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Monday, February 28, 2011

Darren Mullan takes 'Forever Friend' to #2!

      Darren Mullan achieved the Number 2 position in the UK NCM Charts for week ending 27th February. The song, with lyrics by Colin Gordon-Farleigh and music by Greg Scheer, is being played on radio stations around the world to great acclaim.
      You can listen to it and download it by going to CD Baby, emusic, Amazon, and most digital download sites. It's a great song, so why not go and take a listen to it and download it right now!

Jihadist arrested in Texas

Saudi national arrested in Texas on terror charge

Washington (CNN) -- A Saudi national living in Texas was arrested Wednesday for allegedly researching and acquiring chemicals to make a bomb, authorities said Thursday.

Khalid Ali-M Aldawsari, 20, of Lubbock, Texas, allegedly researched several possible targets, including the Dallas home of former President George W. Bush, and nuclear power plants and hydroelectric dams.

Aldawsari was arrested in Lubbock on a federal charge of attempted use of a weapon of mass destruction in connection with his alleged purchase of chemicals and equipment necessary to make an improvised explosive device, according to the Justice Department.

Aldawsari is expected to make his initial appearance in federal court in Lubbock Friday morning, the Department of Justice said.

Aldawsari, who was lawfully admitted into the United States in 2008 on a student visa and is enrolled at South Plains College near Lubbock, faces a maximum sentence of life in prison and a $250,000 fine if convicted of attempted use of a weapon of mass destruction, officials said.

According to court records, Aldawsari has been researching online how to construct an improvised explosive device, or IED, using several chemicals as ingredients. He has also "acquired or taken a substantial step toward acquiring most of the ingredients and equipment" needed for the bomb.

Authorities said Aldawsari described his desire for violent jihad and martyrdom in blog postings and a personal journal.

Aldawsari conducted research on various targets and e-mailed himself information on these locations and people, the Department of Justice said.

On February 6, the affidavit alleges, Aldawsari sent himself an email titled "Tyrant's House," in which he listed the Dallas address for former President George W. Bush, investigators said.

In another email to himself, titled "NICE TARGETS," he listed two categories of targets: hydroelectric dams and nuclear power plants.

Other documents sent to himself, with the subject line "Targets," contained the names and home addresses of three people who had previously served in the U.S. military at Abu Ghraib prison in Iraq.

"As alleged in the complaint, Aldawsari purchased ingredients to construct an explosive device and was actively researching potential targets in the United States. Thanks to the efforts of many agents, analysts and prosecutors, this plot was thwarted before it could advance further," said David Kris, who is assistant attorney general for national security. "This case serves as another reminder of the need for continued vigilance both at home and abroad." 

Government pursue persecution of Christians

Judgment handed down today on Eunice and Owen Johns fostering application. Government body suggests Christian beliefs can "infect" children.

High Court suggests Christian beliefs harmful to children. Fostering by Christians now in doubt

In a landmark judgment, handed down this afternoon (28
In a landmark judgment, handed down this afternoon (28 Feb), the High Court has suggested that Christians with traditional views on sexual ethics are unsuitable as foster carers, and that homosexual ‘rights’ trump freedom of conscience in the UK. The Judges stated that Christian beliefs on sexual ethics may be ‘inimical’ to children, and they implicitly upheld an Equalities and Human Rights Commission submission that children risk being ‘infected’ by Christian moral beliefs.

Today's judgment strongly affirms homosexual rights over freedom of conscience and leaves the Johns currently unable to foster a child as desired, despite their proven track record as foster parents. There now appears to be nothing to stop the increasing bar on Christians who wish to adopt or foster children but who are not willing to compromise their beliefs.

The summary contained in the judgment sends out the clear message that Christian ethical beliefs are potentially harmful to children and that Christian parents with mainstream Christian views are not suitable to be considered as potential foster parents as this does not accord with diversity and equality policies.

Donate buttonThe Johns are being represented by the Christian Legal Centre.

To read the rest of this breaking news, and quotes from the Johns, please see here.

We will be organising a major response to this development and will be in contact again soon with action points.

Christian Concern relies solely on the generous support and donations of Christians in the UK to fight cases like this. Please continue to stand with us and with the Johns as we campaign against injustice and defend the right to practise the Christian faith freely in public. Please help us to continue our work if you can.

Blast from the Past! : Model Days in Zimbabwe!

Here's a real blast from the past! When I was in my 30's and living in what was then known as Rhodesia, I used to moonlight as a male model. That was the period when I actually had hair on my head! This picture appeared in Illustrated Life Rhodesia on 15th November 1973, as part of an advertising supplement for Meikles' Department Store. 

Blast from the Past: On stage with Cilla Black

Many decades ago, in an earlier life, (or so it seems now), I spent some time in the '60's as a part-time compere, and this photo was taken at the backstage entrance to The Pavilion, Bath, when Cilla Black was the star turn for the evening. It was 1964 and we were both 21. I'm behind Cilla and to the left of her in the photo is her late husband Bobby Willis who was a really great guy. This picture appeared in the Bath & Wilts Chronicle & Herald, which was the local paper.

Poem for Today : 'Peace'

I sat by myself
near the mountains close-drawn;
I listened alone,
forgotten ... forlorn.

As I watched the dark sea
with it waters so deep,
I uttered a prayer
that I might never sleep.

With the sun setting down,
and the tide rushing fast,
I listened and watched ...
all was quiet at last!

No sound from the gulls,
for all noise did cease,
and, for a few brief moments,
in my world there was peace!
© 1961 : Colin Gordon-Farleigh

Great quotes from George Whitefield

"All I can say is I look for perpetual conflicts and struggles in this life, and I hope for no other peace, only a cross, while on this side of eternity."
- George Whitefield

"God give me a deep humility, a well-guided zeal, a burning love and a single eye, and then let men or devils do their worst." 
- George Whitefield

Joanne Lowe's Meditations

"Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father which is in heaven."
Matthew 5:16 (King James Version)
      When people look at us, they either see the light of Jesus or they see the darkness of satan.  The question is what do they see when they look at us?  Leila Naylor Morris wrote a hymn that should cause us to search our heart.  The name of this hymn is "Can the World See Jesus in You?"
      "As an open book they our lives will read, To our words and acts giving daily heed; Will they be attracted, or turn away From the Man of Calvary?"  Are we turning people away from Jesus?  If we are turning them away from Jesus because of the way we are living, may God have mercy on us.
      One day every one of us will stand before a Holy God and give an account of what we did with Jesus.  He gave His life's blood for us on a cross of horror and agony so we can have our sins forgiven and be saved and live with Him in Heaven for all eternity.  How can we do less than give Him everything we have?
      When your family and friends look at you, what do they see?  Do they see the love of Jesus on your face and hear His love in your words?  A teenager hearing his parents yelling at one another said "If this is what it is like to be a Christian, I don't want any part of it". 
It is no wonder at all that some teenagers don't want to go to church.  What a sad commentary it is on those of us who claim to be Christians that there are times when we talk the talk but fail to walk the walk.  May God help us to let the light of Jesus shine from our heart so that others may see Jesus.
Joanne Lowe

New Hymn for today . . . 'One Saint at a Time'

One Saint at a Time
God's saving sinners into His kingdom,
He's reaping a harvest of love;
Saving their souls unto salvation,
To call them to heaven above.
One saint at a time,
One saint at a time,
God's bringing souls into His kingdom
One saint at a time.
Come to the river, when you hear Him call,
The fast-flowing river of love;
You will be cleansed, there in the waters,
Made ready for heaven above.
One saint at a time,
One saint at a time,
God's bringing souls into His kingdom
One saint at a time.
Once you've been washed then God can use you,
To help reap the harvest of love;
Helping prepare souls for the kingdom,
To lead them to heaven above.
One saint at a time,
One saint at a time,
God's bringing souls into His kingdom
One saint at a time.
One day we will meet, down by the river,
The fast-flowing river of love;
In clouds of glory Jesus will come ,
To take us to heaven above.
One saint at a time,
One saint at a time,
God's bringing souls into His kingdom
One saint at a time.                (x2)
© 2010 : Colin Gordon-Farleigh

Sunday, February 27, 2011

'Tamira Jehova', sung by the Celebration Choir, Zimbabwe

Having lived in Zimbabwe for many years and having a great love for, and empathy with, the Zimbabwean people, as well as an even greater love for God, I hope that you will enjoy worshipping with me as you listen to this energetic rendition of Tamira Jehova sung by the Celebration Choir in Zimbabwe.

A song from Zimbabwe: 'Munoshamisa' by Andrew Bard

Poem for Today : 'At Close of Day'

At Close of Day
To walk on a summer evening
is best at half-past six,
watching the sun set slowly
beyond the hazel sticks.
The scarecrow in the cornfield
is resting for a while;
the lonesome call of a tired bird,
at rest on a far-off stile.
When bats are circling
across the rainbow sky,
when crickets chorus loud
their plaintive lullaby;
a tired sun goes down to rest:
at half-past six you see it best.
© 1963 : Colin Gordon-Farleigh
 First published in 'Shades of Spring'
Gazebo Books, 1967

Greta Quote by George Whitefield

"For unless your hearts are free from worldly hopes and worldly fears, you never will speak boldly, as you ought to speak. The good old Puritans, I believe, never preached better than when in danger of being taken to prison as soon as they had finished their sermon. And however the church may be at peace now, yet I am persuaded, unless you go forth with the same temper, you will never preach with the same demonstration of the Spirit and of power. Study, therefore, my brethren,-I beseech you by the mercies of God in Christ Jesus,-study your hearts as well as books; ask yourselves again and again whether you would preach for Christ, if you were sure to lay down your lives for so doing?"
- George Whitefield (1714-1770)

New Hymn for today . . . 'Old-Time Gospel'

Old-Time Gospel
Let's sing that old-time Gospel
Of repentance and the Word;
Let's share the love of Jesus,
And make our voices heard.
Let's sing of joy and sorrow,
And the promise of tomorrow -
Let's all praise our Lord!
We'll sing 'Glory, alleluia!'
We'll raise our hands on high;
Of meeting at the river,
And the sweet bye and bye.
We'll sing our songs of gladness,
No more sorrow, no more sadness;
Let us all praise our Lord!
Glory, glory, alleluia!
Let us glorify the King;
Let's give ourselves completely,
And all our praises bring.
Let us sing the Gospel song,
How Jesus triumphed over wrong;
 Let us all praise our Lord!
Let's sing that old-time Gospel
Of repentance and the Word;
Let's share the love of Jesus,
And make our voices heard.
Let's sing of joy and sorrow,
And the promise of tomorrow -
Let's all praise our Lord!
Let's sing of joy and sorrow,
And the promise of tomorrow -
Let's all praise our Lord!
© 2010 : Colin Gordon-Farleigh

Saturday, February 26, 2011

Great quote by Charles Haddon Spurgeon

"In seasons of severe trial, the Christian has nothing on earth that he can trust to, and is therefore compelled to cast himself on God alone. When no human deliverance can avail, he must simply and entirely trust himself to the providence and care of God. Happy storm that wrecks a man on such a rock as this! O blessed hurricane that drives the soul to God--and God alone!"
- Charles Haddon Spurgeon

God's Overwhelming Love Reaches Down

Joanne Lowe's Meditations

 "And they entered into a covenant to seek the Lord God of their fathers with all their heart and with all their soul;"
2 Chronicles 15:12 (King James Version)
      Pastor Philip Doddridge wrote the hymn "O Happy Day, That Fixed My Choice".  The words describe how our lives are changed from sadness to happiness when we are saved.  "Happy day, happy day, when Jesus washed my sins away!  He taught me how to watch and pray, and live rejoicing every day."
      I have had many happy days in my life but none of them compare to the happiness that flooded my heart when I invited Jesus into my heart to be my personal Saviour.  Not only is He my Saviour, He is also my best friend and constant companion.  He laughs with me and cries with me.  O what a precious friend!
      Jesus gives us much more than happiness.  He also fills our heart with joy.  We read in the Bible "Thou wilt shew me the path of life: in thy presence is fulness of joy; at thy right hand there are pleasures for evermore" (Psalm 16:11).  If you want to have the fulness of joy, stay in His presence.
      When Jesus washes our sins away and comes into our heart to be our personal Saviour, it truly is the happiest day of our lives.  Does Jesus live in your heart?  If not, I urge you, I plead with you to invite Him into your heart before it is too late.  Don't miss out on spending eternity with Jesus.  He loves you so much.
      Heavenly Father, I pray that You would touch people and speak to their heart.  Please help them to realize that without Jesus in their heart they will never know real happiness.  Thank You for Jesus and thank You for loving me and for Your patience with me and understanding.  Amen.  I love You, dear Father.
Joanne Lowe

Meditation on Psalm 16:11

New Hymn for today . . . 'The Armour of the Lord'

The Armour of the Lord
I don't need a TV to make me feel at home,
Just a place that is flowing with God's Word.
I need to seek and find others of my kind,
Folk who wear the armour of the Lord.
I've got the breastplate of righteousness,
With the armour of our Lord;
The helmet of salvation,
Truth's power in the sword.
See the devil tremble,
Watch his minions flee -
I have the love of Jesus, and He has me!
Yes, I have the love of Jesus, and He has me!
Rich men in their castles, or poor men at the gate,
Salvation's there for everyone to own:
We need to seek and find the lost, the lame, the blind,
Reach out in His name and bring them home.
I've got the breastplate of righteousness,
With the armour of our Lord;
The helmet of salvation,
Truth's power in the sword.
See the devil tremble,
Watch his minions flee -
I have the love of Jesus, and He has me!
Yes, I have the love of Jesus, and He has me!
© 2010 : Colin Gordon-Farleigh

Friday, February 25, 2011

Afghan convert Said Musa is free!

      I join with those who rejoice that Afghan convert to Christianity Said Musa has been released from prison, where he was under threat of execution for apostasy, after months of vigorous campaigning.
      Said was arrested last May as part of a crackdown on Afghan converts to Christianity. He was tortured and abused in prison but remained steadfast in his faith.
      What a travesty that there are extremist Muslims and Islamic organisations who persecute those who choose to exercise the freedom to worship as they choose rather than as others dictate. 

Yusuf Qaradawi is a huge threat to Egypt and the Middle East

Yusuf Qaradawi's U.S. minions

The real aim of the Fiqh Council of North America

By Alyssa A. Lappen

ACT! for America special report

Those who believe Muslim Brotherhood spiritual leader Yusuf Qaradawi doesn't threaten Egypt --- or the U.S. --- should reconsider. The U.S. banned Qaradawi as a terror-sympathizer in late 1999, 1 yet his MB emissaries continue working to implement his brand of sharia in North America.

Since its 1963 inception within the Muslim Students of America religious committee 2 the Fiqh Council of North America (FCNA), it has been key to MB plans for the U.S. Indeed, the MB so designated FCNA (by an earlier moniker) in an internal 1991 strategic memo.3 FCNA focuses on implementing sharia: individually and collectively, FCNA advises and educates “members and officials on matters related to the application of sharia,” here.4

For at least a decade, FCNA has also espoused an unique version of classical Islamic law.5 Drawn largely from Qaradawi's frequently odious rulings, this temporary “fiqh al aqalliyyat” 6 covers Muslim minorities in the West, according to sharia finance adviser and FCNA secretary Yusuf Talal DeLorenzo, 7 a Dow Jones Islamic Indexes adviser to date.8

Like classic sharia, fiqh al aqalliyyat is highly illiberal. Unlike classic law, it is only interim: It encourages Muslims to temporarily accept non-Muslim rule but heavily populate the West.9 The thesis posits that Dar al-Islam exists wherever Muslims live. It prefers to call the Muslim world “dar-al ijaba,” land of response, and non-Muslim nations, “dar ad-dawah,” i.e., where Islam “has to be spread.” Traditional fatwas banning citizenship in the West block Muslims from fulfilling dawa requirements and calling non-Muslims “kufir” doesn't persuade converts. Whether by conversion or war, the MB goal remains conquest of the West.10

Sharia criminal law, for example, demands and routinely applies capital punishment for apostates from Islam,11 directly contradicting U.S. constitutional rights to freedom of faith. In late Sept. 2009, Former Muslims United sent polite, respectful requests to several dozen U.S. Muslim leaders, that they sign its Freedom Pledge to protect lives, property and rights to freedom of faith for all former Muslims. Pledge recipients included FCNA chairman Muzammil Siddiqi,12 vice chair Muhammad Nur Abdullah, executive director Zulfiqar Ali Shah, executive council members Mohamad A. El Sheikh, FCNA executive trustee Jamal Badawi, Abdur Rahman Khan and Zainab Alwani and member Ishan Bagby.13 All falsely attest to moderation. None replied. None signed.

Apart from unindicted terror-financing co-conspirator Badawi, a onetime trustee of the U.S. arm of the global Muslim Brotherhood itself --- and a decades-long trustee on ISNA's 18-member board14 --- the FCNA executives and members include many figures whose troubling associations, rulings and deeds are equally difficult to digest:

Since his circa 1976 arrival in the U.S. to head religious affairs at the United Nations office of the terror-linked Muslim World League (MWL),15 Siddiqi has maintained close ties to Islamic radicals both in Egypt and Saudi Arabia. Siddiqi thus serves both the Supreme Islamic Council of Egypt and Mecca's Supreme Council of Mosques,16 plus the fatwa board at Islam Online, a website of Qatar-based MB spiritual mouthpiece Yusuf Qaradawi --- who returned to Egypt on Feb. 17, 2011 after a 30-year exile to pray for Jerusalem's conquest.17 (Siddiqi's class was first to graduate from the MB's 1961-founded Islamic University of Medina, after King Saud bin Abdel Aziz welcomed a second wave of Egyptian exiles and funded their spread of orthodox Islam and jihad doctrine, particularly to foreign students.)18

FCNA co-founder, former chairman and president Taha Jabir Alalwani --- an unindicted co-conspirator in the case of admitted terror-financier Sami al-Arian 19 --- on Oct. 13, 2007 signed “A Common Word,” a declaration of commonality purporting to tie Christians and Muslims more closely. Nevertheless, he supports Islamic law --- including the death penalty for apostates. Very few website visitors pierce the facade 20 or recognize the MB goal --- buying time to complete their North American conquest. That's all it is.

In April 2006, Abdullah and Badawi co-authored a fatwa encouraging Muslim proselytizing to Christians and Jews, but finding gross sin in Muslim conversions outside Islam.21 When scholars distinguish apostasy “not punishable by death,” from “apostasy... accompanied by ... high treason,” Badawi wrote, the death penalty is still administered --- for high treason. The distinction would not comfort the murder victims, in either sort of fiqh ruling.

Alwalani also serves SAFA Group and its suspected terror-aiding and funding network. In 2003, the U.S. Customs and Treasury departments raided FCNA's Virginia offices within their Operation Greenquest dragnet for terrorist ties and financing.22 Homeland security's senior special Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) agent David Kane, in Oct. 2003 reported strong evidence of al-Arian's conspiracy with SAFA Group executives to fund and support HAMAS and PIJ. In a late 1988 (or so) fatwa also discovered, Alwalani invoked jihad, invested by Allah's power in Muslims, as “the only way to liberate Palestine,” where “no person or authority” could give Jews any rights at all, much less let Jews settle or live.23

On Mar. 24, 2003 at Islam Online, Abdullah, Badawi and Siddiqi condoned “Seeking Martyrdom by Attacking US Military Bases in the Gulf,” a ruling of anonymous “muftis” mandating maiming and murder of U.S. troops in the Middle East. “[A]ttacking American soldiers who came to launch war against Muslims is an obligation and Jihad, as they are true invaders,” the fatwa commands. Such obligatory jihad, moreover, would deliver “the highest degree of martyrdom” to Muslims “killed” so doing:24 Eternity with 72 virgins.

In 2008, a federal jury unanimously convicted five Holy Land Foundation officers of 108 counts of funding Hamas, money laundering and tax fraud. 25 Prosecutors also pronounced FCNA executive trustee Jamal Badawi and FCNA member, trustee and former Islamic Association of Palestine (IOP) director Muhammad al-Hanooti 26 unindicted co-conspirators (with many MB organizations). A circa 1978 immigrant 27 --- and unindicted co-conspirator in the 1993 World Trace Center attack --- Hanooti remains in Washington D.C. 28 A preponderance of publicly accessible evidence prompted the New Orleans 5th Circuit Court of Appeals in Oct. 2010 to leave all HLF unindicted co-conspirator designations unsealed and intact. 29 Badawi, Hanooti et all remain highly suspect.

Great Quotes from Leonard Ravenhill

"One of these days some simple soul will pick up the book of God, read it, and believe it. Then the rest of us will be embarrassed."

- Leonard Ravenhill

"The opportunity of a lifetime must be seized within the lifetime of the opportunity."

- Leonard Ravenhill

New Hymn for today . . . 'Walking with Jesus'

Walking with Jesus
I'm walking with Jesus
each moment of the day;
yes, I'm walking with Jesus,
He's the Truth, the Life, the Way.
The road is straight and narrow,
and it sometimes can be rough;
sometimes it's so easy,
but other times it's tough.
Walking with Jesus,
He's the Truth, the Life, the Way.
Walking with Jesus,
Every minute of the day.
My life would be empty
if Jesus were not there,
then I would find life's burdens
were far more than I could bear.
I praise God that He's with me
every minute of the day,
Jesus is my Saviour,
the Truth, the Life, the Way.
Walking with Jesus,
He's the Truth, the Life, the Way.
Walking with Jesus,
Every minute of the day.
Walking on life's highway,
no need to be alone;
just share the road with Jesus,
till the day He takes you home.
Keep on the straight and narrow,
even when the goings tough;
He'll ease every journey,
and smooth away the rough.
Walking with Jesus,
He's the Truth, the Life, the Way.
Walking with Jesus,
Every minute of the day.
© 2010 : Colin Gordon-Farleigh

I was in Tallahassee in February last year for the launch of Charlotte Kerce's CD He's Always With Me, and whilst I was there I wrote the lyrics to six new Country Gospel songs. Recently my song-writing partner, Greg Scheer, started working on the music for them, and yesterday evening they dropped into my in-box. This song is the first of the six set to a guitar score. Play it, sing it, praise the Lord with and through it and, above all, enjoy it!

Incidentally, for those who might not know, you can buy the full CD or individual tracks of He's Always With Me on CD Baby, iTunes, Amazon and all leading digital download sites, as well as purchasing the hard-copy CD from the Sheer Joy Music on-line shop. Why not visit one of them today, have a listen to the samples and then make your purchase.

Thursday, February 24, 2011

"Do you really exist?" --- A few philosophical thoughts

Possibly the prime argument that we exist is that we are here, wherever here may be supposed to be, and that by reasoning that, if we are able to consider our own existence, weighing up the various influencing factors, then we must, ipso facto exist. This argument, in itself, must surely be based only upon the surmise that we are in fact here and considering the case for existence at all. In the first instance I say possibly because of course, if we cannot prove for the argument that we do indeed exist then, by the same mode of reasoning, we are thereby unable to consider that we do even exist at all. To simply make a statement, supposedly of fact, that "I reason, I am, therefore I exist”, must surely be flawed in the extreme, particularly when we ask the question, "In whose opinion do I exist". Even presupposing that I do exist in someone's opinion, as opinion is considered to be an intangible in that it cannot be seen or touched or even experienced other than by the person who claims it as their own, is it not therefore something that should be viewed, metaphorically speaking of course, since it cannot be visually seen, with the utmost distrust. Should we only be prepared to consider it's existence once we have proved beyond doubt that the person who claims to hold such opinion does in fact exist themselves. This brings us back to the original consideration whereby we can only surmise that we exist because we reason that we do. This, in itself, cannot be considered proof of existence.

Poem for Today : 'Forgotten Land'

Forgotten Land
A tall tree on the brow of the hill,
Meadow stretch as far a you gaze;
A tumbledown farm near the mill,
The stream covered in misted haze.

The noise of the sheep away in the fold,
And cattle in the byre near:
Dreams of a land where we never grow old
And never a worry or fear.

But alas, it's a dream for me now,
As I gaze down the brambled track.
Not a sheep nor a lonesome cow ---
Just a land that is calling me back.

The mill-stream goes on through the ages,
Though the farmhouse is crumbling still;
And we look at the last broken stages
Of the tree on the brow of the hill.

© 1961 : Colin Gordon-Farleigh

This poem dates back 50 years to 1961, and I remember the time that I wrote it very clearly. It was inspired by a painting at the home of my very first love, which showed a ploughed hill crest with a tumbledown farmhouse to the right of the picture and a lone tree towards the left. There was such beauty and yet such sadness in the sparsity of the painting, and I had looked at it so many times as I sat with the family in their lounge. The image is still imprinted on my memory, and still evokes the same feelings about it that I had when I first saw it over fifty years ago.

A Few Thoughts on Friendship