Sisterland by Curtis Sittenfeld

Sisterland by Curtis Sittenfeld

I loved this book! Enjoy the review written by Awo Laryea!

Awolaryea

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My first book read in 2018. Although I am neither a twin nor have a sister I share a close bond with, I enjoyed Curtis’s book. I however, think that the story could have been told in fewer pages. At a point, the book seemed  like a movie with too many characters and too many sub-plots. Despite their challenges, I liked the way the sisters  looked out for each other. Style wise, i enjoy a book better when its picturesque. Although very voluminous, I could not clearly find my way around St Louis in my head and most of the time, it was dark and dull- i thought the imagery could have been better. Nevertheless, I read every single page and in record time too. I decided last year not to write out the entire summary in my reviews but this was a 521 page book and I have no…

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Links to various tertiary institutions in Ghana-for admission details

Links to various tertiary institutions in Ghana-for admission details

It’s application time in Ghana for tertiary institutions. Kindly find below a link to the various institutions. You’ll also find details of cut off points. All the best with the application process.

http://www.myskuul.com/20182019-admission-forms-tertiary-schools-ghana/

Cheers!

Angela Azumah Alu

Reasons to attend World Youth Day in Panama 2019

Reasons to attend World Youth Day in Panama 2019

So this post was in response to a question about the need to attend the next World Youth Day in Panama 2019.

By way of introduction, the World Youth Day (WYD) is an international festival for Catholic and other Youth. It was started by late Pope John Paul II. It usually happens every two (2) or three (3) years. In between, there are diocesan and national WYDs.

In 2018, there would be a National Version of the WYD in Ghana from 27th July to 5th August 2018 in the Greater Accra Region with the climax at the University of Ghana. And in 2019, the international Version of the World Youth Day will be in Panama from 22nd to 27th January 2019. Here’s a link to the site: https://www.panama2019.pa/en/home/

The Youth of the Archdiocese of Accra will in addition to the WYD in Panama also visit the USA (Washington and New York) and tour in Panama. So they will travel from 2nd to 29th January 2019.

Below is the Post:
17/12/2017
16:57

Well, I guess it’s a question worth asking. And there are a lot of answers to give .

One of the very first things is that as a pilgrimage, it can be considered as in service training for youth and youth leaders. This is because it provides them with an opportunity to go and pray and to experience the catholic church in its universality. You might argue that we can always pray in the home church but remember that its the same reason why companies send their staff for training out of the office and why the kingdom of God is likened to a pearl you have to sell everything to get. There’s nothing like being in a place for the sole purpose of fellowshipping with God and other catholic youth. It is literally life changing! You get to hear God as never before because you are away from the usual distractions of life. Everyone who attends has many stories of how God spoke to them and used them to minister to others.

Secondly, as youth  and as Catholics, experiencing a Catholic celebration with millions of other catholic youth from all over the world broadens your horizons, gives you new perspectives on how to exercise your faith and how to lead and generally becomes a stepping stone for greater heights. The youthful exuberance is so much that it changes you.

Thirdly, you have the opportunity to exercise your faith through the various religious and cultural activities you participate in. In addition, during the mission days, you are literally a missionary to the family you are staying with. What a way to obey the great commission! You become a lifelong member of that family too! You also get to meet, make friends with and minister to other catholic youth you may never otherwise meet. And of course showcase great Ghanaian culture and experience other cultures.

A fourth reason to go for World Youth Day with the  Accra Archdiocese is that because of the format of going with youth from the various parishes, you literally have a once in a lifetime opportunity to meet with and spend time with other youth from the diocese over an extended period of time. The friendships and sharing that occur over this period tend to be lasting and very impactful.

A fifth reason is that since for many of the pilgrims it is their first time of travelling, it literally becomes an opportunity to get them out into the world in a faith like environment. This helps with getting your documentation and all other things needed for international travel in order. That way, the church is literally being shrewd in giving its young people an international experience so that in other years, they have an easier and smoother travelling experience. And of course, as you travel you see more and come back with more to teach and impact others with.

Anyway, I will end here. From a physical perspective, it seems like a lot of money and the question may be asked why that money should not be used to cater for the poor and needy in the church. Jesus’s words when Mary wiped his feet with an expensive jar of alabaster oil come to mind. The poor and needy will always be with us and we need to take care of them but, just as Mary anointed Jesus’s feet and Jesus promised that this act will be said in remembrance of her, so it is important for youth/the parish to literally do all that is necessary to take part in international WYD at this time because there may be no other time.

Angela Azumah Alu
17/12/17

wyd quote

Meditations on when David finally became king

Meditations on when David finally became king

David was anointed king as a teenager. I think it’s reputed that he was about 17 years old. That was as far back as in 1 Sam 16:1-3. He finally became king in 2 Sam 5:1-7,10. He was 30 years old then.

In between, a lot happened. He killed goliath, he fought battles for Saul. He had to flee from Saul. He got married. Saul pursued him. He became a rebel leader. He learnt how to lead. He fought and won battles. He learnt to trust in God.

13 years! It was a really long time from the promise to its fulfilment. But when the time was due, it was the people of Israel who came and acknowledged that God had anointed David as king. They made him king. And he reigned for 40 years.

So there are a lot of lessons from this story for me. That when God makes you a promise, it will happen in His time not yours. Trust Him and never give up hope.

And while you’re waiting, prepare yourself. As a king, David was a leader. That meant that all the time he had spent being a leader would serve him in good stead as king.

He built up his relationship with God. That is even the most important of all. There are many psalms where you see that David literally had to depend on God. Build up your relationship with God.

He built up relationships with others. That is also very important and necessary.

And finally, he lived! Live your life! Never ever put your life on hold while waiting for a promise to be fulfilled. Cheer up! Live!

Angela Azumah Alu

About weeds and gardens

About weeds and gardens

So my mum has made a garden at home. It was a lot of work. The place was initially full of stones. So she had to get someone to clear the grounds. It’s even still not done yet. And then, she had to buy the grass and the flowers she wanted to plant.
So she did that. And then came the watering. The place had to be watered twice daily. And honestly, it’s a lot of work. I know…coz I’ve done it.
Then the dogs decided to dig the plants up. It was not funny at all. So she had to get a sort of barricade made for the plants to keep the dogs out. It’s better now but mischievous Poncho (one of the dogs) dug up the carpet grass she had planted. He’s even destroyed some of the cage like things she made for the plants.
It’s not all been doom and gloom. She’s harvested okro from the garden. The grass is a delight to see and after a year, we’ll even have our own plantain. Hurray! And now, some of the plants bloom so beautifully that you can even get flowers for the house. See the pictures below.
Anyway, enough rambling. For me, what has stood out in this whole garden story has been the weeds. They just grow! And keep growing! Whereas, she had to buy the other plants and even not all of them did well, the weeds just grow. And you have to make time to uproot them, other wise they make the garden look messy and I daresay, they take up the nutrients for the plants. That was a very deep lesson for me. Bad habits seem to develop naturally while good habits have to be consciously worked at.
And last one, as a “non regular” member of the garden “workers”, I do not uproot weeds…because frankly, I can’t tell the difference…. especially when they are very little, they seem like the other plants. It is when they grow that you can tell the difference. (Hoping to learn though). This reminds me of the parable of the wheat and the tares. The master allowed them to grow side by side so that when they grow, the difference will be clearly seen.
Question for you and I: what are the things we want to grow in our lives? Are we ready to pay the price?
Peace!
Angela Azumah Alu, 1/4/17, Legon
He gave me laughter!-Meditations on Genesis 21:6

He gave me laughter!-Meditations on Genesis 21:6

Gen 21:6 Now Sarah said, God has brought laughter for me; everyone who hears will laugh with me. (NRSV)

Now one of my favourite stories in the bible is that of Abraham. It’s filled with drama.

And there are a lot of stories. If you want to explore more, look at from Genesis 12-23. But my focus is on selected verses from Genesis 12, 15,16,17,18 and 21.

So here goes.

So God called Abraham (his name was Abram then) in Chapter 12 and asked him to go a foreign land. He promised to make him a great nation and to bless all nations through him. Fair enough. Only one problem. His wife Sarah (initially Sarai) was barren. So they had no children. That sounds pretty ridiculous right? Why promise to make a man with no children the father of many nations?

Anyway, Abraham actually leaves and goes to settle in Canaan. And he doesn’t own anything there yet. Until the burial plot he bought to bury Sarah in. But that’s not the focus of the meditation.

So, in Chapter 15, God appears to Abraham again and promises him a son. Abraham believes God and it is reckoned to him as righteousness. Then, in Chapter 16, his wife suggests that he impregnates their maid so they can have a son by her. He does that and Ishmael is born with Hagar the maid as his mother.

Now God comes back in Chapter 17 and tells Abraham that it is Sarah who will give him a son. Really? I loved Abraham’s response! He fell on his face, laughed and asked if a son could be born to a 100 year old man and a 90 year old woman. (Well, that’s what actually happens in the end anyway). Anyway, God even adds that the child is to be called Isaac: He laughs (guess God wanted to have the last laugh!)

Then in Chapter 18, God comes to visit Abraham and tells Sarah that He will come back in a year’s time and she will have a son. She also laughs! But denies when God confronts her about her laughter.

Then in Chapter 21, we read that God did for Sarah as he promised. She actually has a son whom they name Isaac: He laughs! That is when Sarah cannot help but exclaim: Godd has brought laughter for me; everyone who hears will laugh with me.

So now lessons:

God knows you and loves you. That may sometimes be hard to believe but He really does.

He has a plan for you. It may take a long time but trust Him. Abraham was 75 years when God called him. Isaac was born 25 years later.  Trust God.

Don’t be afraid to talk to and dialogue with God. There’s nothing you do that surprises Him. He is able to take any sorrow and turn it into laughter for His name sake. May that be your story!

And finally, build your relationship with Him.

There are many more lessons. I’d encourage you to visit the bible and glean them for yourself. Ciao!

Angela Azumah Alu, 3/1/17, Legon

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Image from: https://www.google.com.gh/search?q=laughter&client=firefox-b-ab&dcr=0&source=lnms&tbm=isch&sa=X&ved=0ahUKEwjt7ojD-7zYAhUJBcAKHUpeBdYQ_AUICigB&biw=1366&bih=656#imgrc=f3ZDVO5ue_eouM:

 

 

2018: To be pleasing and acceptable in Your sight

2018: To be pleasing and acceptable in Your sight

Enjoy! I loved this!

Sharing my life as a phd candidate

On the 1st of January 2018 around 21h54, I sat down to write down my goals for 2018.

I do not have a lot of goals for 2018. I always say I am not such an ambitious person. One of the most important points I wrote down is to be pleasing and acceptable in the sight of God.

(Sorry Sandy B, I am about to snitch on you)

Okay so Sandra is a good friend of mine. She did her year abroad here in Nantes last academic year. She posted a photo of me on her WhatsApp story with the caption “Elle a un coeur comme celui de Jésus” literally translated as: She has a heart like that of Jesus. Of which I replied: I am humbled but I don’t think I am anywhere near Jesus.

It got me thinking. I am a deep thinker haha! I wondered if Jesus…

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