Guest Nicole -
By Jack Ryan
A double-page article in the print edition of Wales On Sunday, a English-language Welsh newspaper, and 'sister' newspaper to The Western Mail (Mon to Sat). Wales on Sunday has a circulation of just under 10,000-copies each Sunday.
Wales On Sunday (UK), Sunday, August 5, 2018 - pages 14 & 15
By Guest Nicole
Exercise changes the brains and sperm of male animals in ways that later affect the brains and thinking skills of their offspring, according to a fascinating new study involving mice.
The findings indicate that some of the brain benefits of physical activity may be passed along to children, even if a father does not begin to exercise until adulthood.
We already have plenty of scientific evidence showing that exercise is good for our brains, whether we are mice or people. Among other effects, physical activity can strengthen the connections between neurons in the hippocampus, a crucial part of the brain involved in memory and learning. Stronger neuronal connections there generally mean sharper thinking.
Studies also indicate that exercise, like other aspects of lifestyle, can alter how genes work — whether and when they get turned on or off, for instance — and those changes can get passed on to children. This process is known as epigenetics.
By Guest Nicole
The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge have left hospital after the arrival of their third child, a boy.
The couple's second son, who was born at 11:01 BST, weighing 8lb 7oz, is fifth in line to the throne.
Prince George and Princess Charlotte had visited their brother at the Lindo Wing of St Mary's Hospital, London.
Leaving the hospital Prince William said the couple were very happy, before holding up three fingers and joking he had "thrice the worry now".
"We didn't keep you waiting too long this time," he added.
When someone asked him whether the couple had decided on a name, he said: "You'll find out soon enough."
Read more: http://www.bbc.com/news/uk-43864933
By Guest Nicole
Independent investigators in the United Kingdom are weighing whether to launch a new investigation into the Jehovah’s Witnesses in the U.K. after receiving a “considerable number” of abuse allegations.
The Independent Inquiry into Child Sexual Abuse, or IICSA, a government-sanctioned investigative panel in England and Wales, told The Guardian that it had gotten a “considerable number” of reports from both the public and elected officials about the Jehovah’s Witnesses in the U.K. A spokesperson told the newspaper the panel would “consider calls for a Jehovah’s Witnesses–specific investigation carefully.”
It was unclear how many reports the watchdog group had received. When contacted by Newsweek, Jehovah’s Witnesses’ public information office did not immediately comment.
Kathleen Hallisey, a lawyer who brought charges against the Jehovah’s Witnesses for sexual abuse in 2015, said she suspected there are thousands of such cases in the U.K., The Guardian reported.
“The Jehovah’s Witnesses refuse to recognize the issue of child abuse in their organization or to create robust safeguarding procedures to protect children,” she said. “An investigation by IICSA into the Jehovah’s Witnesses is an opportunity for the inquiry to effect real change in an organization that refuses to shine a light on child abuse and protect children.”
News of the possible investigation comes weeks after the nonprofit religious transparency organization Faithleaks leaked 33 letters and internal documents revealing a pattern of sexual abuse by one Jehovah’s Witness member, and the lengths the church went to cover up the scandal.
Those documents detail communications among church leaders and several legal entities—collectively known as Watchtower—between 1999 and 2012. In one letterto Watchtower dated November 14, 1999, the Palmer Congregation of Jehovah’s Witnesses from Brimfield, Massachusetts, said it had reviewed claims by two women who alleged their father sexually abused them as children. The group found those claims to be true.
“Our impression upon speaking with both girls was similar. That they are both quite rational. It certainly appears that these were real events,” the letter said.
In that case, church leaders pressured one of the accusers not to report the abuse to police. Years later, the church held an in-house trial and briefly excommunicated the father.
That victim was not the only person pressured to remain silent.
In the U.K., several alleged victims had come forward with similar claims in November 2017, according to The Telegraph.
“Frankly, I would equate this to a scandal and a cover-up akin to the Catholic Church,” Hallisey told The Telegraph at the time.
By Guest Nicole
There's a long list of no-nos that come with being a pregnant Jehovah Witness.
Jehovah's Witnesses are a group of religious believers who consider themselves to be a sect of Christianity, but they have nontrinitarian beliefs that make them oh so different. They are best known by us mainstream folk for knocking on our doors at dinnertime preaching their beliefs, distributing pamphlets that get wedged in our doors and eventually blow around the yard, refusing to serve in the military, shunning all holidays and saying no to blood transfusions of any type. Practicing Jehovah celebrities such as Prince, Michael Jackson and Serena and Venus Williams have brought the religion into the media, but really little is known about what goes on behind their church doors.
According to the Jehovah Witnesses we are all being controlled by Satan and don't have a high chance in hell (not that they believe in hell) of making it into God's Kingdom. Apparently according to their doctrine there are only about 144,000 slots saved up there. While this group of people certainly live by the rules of the church, being a pregnant J.W. comes with a list of no-no's a mile long. There is a whole lot that these expecting women can not do in order to stay right in the Church's eyes.
Read more: https://www.babygaga.com/15-rules-pregnant-jehovahs-must-follow/
By Guest Nicole
Children who were sexually abused by Jehovah's Witnesses were allegedly told by the church not to report the crimes.
Victims from across the UK told the BBC they were routinely abused and that the religious organisation's own rules protected perpetrators.
One child abuse lawyer believes there could be thousands of victims across the country who have not come forward because of the "two witness" rule.
A spokesperson for the church said it did not "shield" abusers.
'Bring reproach on Jehovah'
BBC Hereford and Worcester spoke to victims - men and women - from Birmingham, Cheltenham, Leicester, Worcestershire and Glasgow, one of whom waived her right to anonymity.
Louise Palmer, who now lives in Evesham, Worcestershire, was born into the organisation along with her brother Richard Davenport, who started raping her when she was four. He is serving a 10-year prison sentence for the abuse.
The 41-year-old, formerly of Halesowen, West Midlands, said when she told the church of the abuse she was told not to go to police.
Read more: http://www.bbc.com/news/uk-england-42025255
By Guest Nicole
At an office for Healthy Minds in High Wycombe, England, psychological well-being practitioners perform hourlong evaluations over the phone to decide what type of therapy is most appropriate for people who call asking for help. CreditAndrew Testa for The New York Times
LONDON — England is in the midst of a unique national experiment, the world’s most ambitious effort to treat depression, anxiety and other common mental illnesses.
The rapidly growing initiative, which has gotten little publicity outside the country, offers virtually open-ended talk therapy free of charge at clinics throughout the country: in remote farming villages, industrial suburbs, isolated immigrant communities and high-end enclaves. The goal is to eventually create a system of primary care for mental health not just for England but for all of Britain.
At a time when many nations are debating large-scale reforms to mental health care, researchers and policy makers are looking hard at England’s experience, sizing up both its popularity and its limitations. Mental health care systems vary widely across the Western world, but none have gone nearly so far to provide open-ended access to talk therapies backed by hard evidence. Experts say the English program is the first broad real-world test of treatments that have been studied mostly in carefully controlled lab conditions.
Read more: https://www.nytimes.com/2017/07/24/health/england-mental-health-treatment-therapy.html
January 19, 2017 TO ALL BODIES OF ELDERS IN WALES Re: Prerecorded Memorial and Special Talk 2017 - WelshBy Jack Ryan
see link below:
January 19, 2017 TO ALL BODIES OF ELDERS IN WALES Re: Prerecorded Memorial and Special Talk 2017 - Welsh
By Guest Nicole
Chichester, England (CNN)By the time Rolls-Royce unveiled its one-of-a-kind Serenity Phantom at the 2015 Geneva Motor Show, it was already one of the most buzzed about debuts of the international showcase.
Rendered opalescent with glossy mother of pearl paint and detailed with polished bamboo and smoked cherry wood, it was immediately hailed as "the world's most beautiful Rolls-Royce" and "fit for royalty."
But it's what's inside that truly captivated: The entire interior -- from the seats to the headliner -- was upholstered with pastel blue raw silk, sourced from Suzhou, one of China's silk embroidery capitals, and woven in one of the UK's oldest mills. Delicate flowers, a riff on Japanese royal robes and chinoiserie, were embroidered and hand-painted throughout.
This intricate beauty befit an opulent palace living room, or a priceless couture gown.
"With the fabric, the beauty of it, you just have to stop what you were thinking about and enjoy the moment," says Cherica Haye, the 31-year-old color and textiles maven who helped conceive the interiors. It was she who designed the distinctive floral motif and hand-painted the flowers within.
"It brings you down from 100 to a normal level. With materials you can do that."
Haye is part of Rolls-Royce Bespoke, a studio of craftsman and artisans charged with designing the marque's most ambitious, and expensive, custom models.
Initially trained in fashion at Central Saint Martins -- the prestigious London college that counts Alexander McQueen and John Galliano as alums -- she's elevating auto interiors to new heights.
From couture to cars
While studying textiles at Central Saint Martins, the Londoner had already mapped out her career: she would become a master of fabric innovation, and then take her skills to the storied ateliers of Paris.
"I wanted to be head of material development and design at Dior," she says, laughing, at the Rolls-Royce headquarters in the south of England.
"I don't even know if that exists, but that's what I wanted to do."
It was only when she started her Master in Fiber, Textile and Weaving Arts at the Royal College of Art, by then weary of the competitive nature of the fashion industry, that she decided to shift her focus to automotive design, driven by her dream of someday owning a Jaguar.
Rolls-Royce Bespoke color and material designer Cherica Haye at the company's production plant in Chichester, England.
Instead of interning, she developed conceptual textiles for the likes of Jaguar, Kia and Audi, submitting samples she'd developed as part of her course work.
Her talents eventually caught the eye of Rolls-Royce design director Giles Taylor. Impressed by her graduate portfolio, which incorporated unique woven horsehair blends and incorporated traditional Japanese dyeing techniques, he invited her to join his team less than a year later, when they were set to begin work on their most beautiful project yet.
But Haye is quick to point out that she's not the only one coming to vehicular design from an unexpected background. Michelle Lusby, for example, who worked with her on the Serenity interiors, comes from an illustration background.
Other team members have been handpicked from the worlds of tattooing, sign-making, yachting, saddlery, and costume design. Cross-pollination and interdisciplinary collaboration, it seems, are the foundation on which all projects rest.
"There's a constant coming together of different disciplines, but what strings us together is that we're all design," she explains.
"You just have to have an eye, and that's what connects... Not everybody's taste is going to be the same, but you have to have that."
A dream job
If anything, she finds that her background might have left her better prepared for her current position than people think. Like the luxury fashion industry, bespoke auto design calls for endless creativity and problem-solving. And, as in a couture house, her current clientele is catered to in every way, their every whim and request met regardless of the effort or expense.
And most importantly, both fields allow her to work with and develop unique textiles, which remains her true passion.
"At heart, I'm a textiles designer that specializes in color, in material makeup, in material innovation. Not just the overall feel of it, but to the minute, micro level. I do color, I do material overlaying, material-making, designing," she says.
"It seems pretty dreamy, eh?"
By Guest Nicole
Here are more of them
By Guest Nicole
How This Poster in a Women's Restroom at a Bar Cleverly Combats Sexual Assault 'Ask for Angela,' the PSA urgesBy Guest Nicole
A county council in England has come up with a clever and discreet way of combatting sexual violence and abuse.
A photo posted to Twitter (and retweeted almost 30,000 times) shows a poster in the women's bathroom at a bar in Lincolnshire that advises anyone who is feeling unsafe on a date to ask the bar staff for "Angela"—a code word alerting the staff that someone is in need of help.
The copy reads: "Are you on a date that isn't working out? Is your Tinder or POF [Plenty of Fish] date not who they said they were on their profile? Do you feel like you're not in a safe situation? Does it all feel a bit weird? If you go to the bar and ask for 'Angela,' the bar staff will know you need help getting out of your situation and will call you a taxi or help you out discreetly—without too much fuss."
The idea of being helped discreetly is the most compelling part about the campaign. Fear of causing a scene or being wrong can be paralyzing for people in an unnerving situation.
Hayley Child, substance misuse and sexual violence and abuse strategy coordinator for Lincolnshire County Council, tells the Independent: "The 'Ask for Angela' posters are part of our wider #NoMore campaign which aims to promote a culture change in relation to sexual violence and abuse, promote services in Lincolnshire and empower victims to make a decision on whether to report incidents."
She adds: "Sexual abuse and violence is an national issue, and all councils have a responsibility to tackle abuse. This was Lincolnshire Community Safety Partnership's first awareness raising campaign on this issue."
The only problem we see is that the #NoMore hashtag is a bit lost among many #NoMore hashtags on social media. But overall, it's a great effort toward fixing a major problem.
By The Librarian
Surrey, England Assembly Hall of Jehovah's Witnesses
By Guest Nicole
Stephanie Booth was once in the running to buy Wrexham AFC
Stephanie Booth, one of North Wales' most colourful characters, has died at the age of 70.
Also known as Stephanie Ann Lloyd, the businesswoman and hotelier was regularly in the spotlight during her amazing life and career, even featuring in her own BBC Wales show, Hotel Stephanie.
Originally born Keith Hull to parents who were Jehovah's Witnesses, she had to overcome transgender prejudice following her sex change from family man to female entrepreneur.
As a man, she worked as a director of a FTSE 100 company and became a father of three after marrying at the age of 21.
But, 16 years later in 1983, Ms Booth underwent gender reassignment surgery.
The flamboyant character told how she lost her job and family following the surgery, but was determined to forge ahead with her new identity and life.
Speaking about the gender reassignment, Ms Booth said: “Gender reassignment is a long, painful journey. It solves one painful problem in your life but creates others.”
In the mid 80s, she launched a transgender mail order catalogue and a contact magazine. A transgender hotel was set up in Manchester with a second shop in London.
Ms Booth married David Booth, and they moved from Manchester about 23 years ago to start one of the most respected business partnerships in North Wales.
They had a chain of seven hotels including Bodidris Hall in Llandegla, The Wynnstay Arms in Wrexham, and The Wild Pheasant , The Chainbridge and The Bryn Howel in Llangollen.
In 2008 and 2009, the BBC Wales fly-on-the wall documentary Hotel Stephanie hit the screens, giving a behind-the-scenes look at the larger-than-life character.
In 2011, Ms Booth was in the running to buy crisis-hit Wrexham AFC , but the club eventually came under the stewardship of the Wrexham Supporters Trust.
Later that year, Ms Booth's business went through troubled times when a chain of hotels run by her went into administration.
Ms Booth died at the age of 70 after a tractor crash at a farm on the outskirts of Corwen on Sunday night.
By Guest Nicole
There are museums devoted to pretty much everything: bad art, instant ramen, hair. Now there is a museum in southern England devoted to excrement.
The National Poo Museum, which opened in March at the Isle of Wight Zoo in Sandown, was created by a small group of artists from a collective calledEccleston George. The group, which usually makes interactive exhibits for schools and zoos, was looking for a new project that could generate a trickle of income for its artists. The idea for the museum originated when a member, Daniel Roberts, was walking on a country path in Sweden and happened upon some mysterious animal droppings.
“Everyone stopped in their tracks to wonder what sort of poo it was,” Mr. Roberts said. “It ended up being from a lynx.”
He was struck, he said, by how intrigued his companions were. “People are disgusted by poo, but there’s also this fascination with it,” he said. And so the National Poo Museum was born.
Nigel George, left, and Daniel Roberts created the National Poo Museum at the Isle of Wight Zoo in Sandown, England.
It is more of an exhibit than a museum, occupying a single room at the zoo, where it will be open until the end of the summer; after that, it will go on tour. It features 20 examples of feces from different animals, including pigeon, meerkat and lion. Each sample is suspended in a sphere of clear resin that can be illuminated with the touch of a button.
Before it is preserved this way, each sample must be dried. The bird droppings dried quickly, but a cowpat took about a week to dry out and the lion feces almost two weeks.
One of the more interesting samples, from a herring gull, has a white object tangled in it.
“The white part is the remnant of a plastic bag,” said Nigel George, one of the Eccleston George artists. “This tells a story of what human beings are doing to the ecology of a place.”
The museum also features information on bowel cancer and the importance of keeping sewer pipes unblocked and unclogged, among other helpful tidbits about feces.
“It’s had a huge resonance with kids,” said Bill Cane, another member of the collective. “The poop emoji is super popular now, and it seems to be riding quite a bit on that.”
In fact, Mr. Cane said, one of the children who visited the exhibit came clutching a plush-toy poop emoji.
Jehovah's Witnesses 'ordered destruction' of notes which could have been used during child sexual abuse inquiryBy admin
A former church elder in South Wales has claimed the church has gone against the request made by Judge Lowell Goddard
The Jehovah’s Witnesses have been accused of ordering the destruction of documents in direct contradiction of an order not to do so from a major child sexual abuse inquiry.
Religious organisations, as well as schools, colleges and other institutions, have been told by the Independent Inquiry into Child Sexual Abuse – led by Judge Lowell Goddard – to keep hold of any documents which could be useful to the investigation.
A request sent out to the bodies last year stated measures should be taken “to ensure that everything of potential relevance to the Inquiry is retained”.
Jehovah’s Witness elders hear allegations against members of the congregation and record what is said.
We have seen a copy of an edict distributed to Jehovah’s Witnesses congregations around the UK ordering the destruction of “all agendas and minutes of elders’ meetings (other than business meeting minutes)”, “all personal notes taken at elders’ meetings (except those based on discussions of outlines from ‘the faithful and discreet slave’ and that do not mention any particular individual)” and “any other personal records, notes, or correspondence that refer to particular individuals”.
Referring to the congregation file the edict also says all agendas of elders’ meetings should be destroyed and that Congregation Service Committees should “make sure all records relating to child molestation are in harmony”.
And one former senior church elder from South Wales, who has been a Jehovah’s Witness for more than half a century, said the revelations put the church directly at odds with the request of the independent inquiry.
He said: “The fact is there are dangers within the Jehovah’s Witnesses as there are within other organisations – but whereas I see other organisations taking steps to conform with child safety it seems the Jehovah’s Witnesses are going the other way. They are still trying to keep it in-house and not making it transparent.”
He added: “Under the present rules all personal documents, aides-memoire, agendas and notes are to be destroyed. That will mean in future that if they are approached by police Jehovah’s Witnesses could say they don’t remember anything.
New Zealand High Court judge Justice Lowell Goddard
“This seems a backward step, particularly in the light of Judge Lowell Goddard’s request that, so victims can be helped in bringing justice to abusers, all organisations must keep what they can to assist.
'Ignored' judge's request
“Why, when an organisation says it abhors child abuse, would it go and destroy documents that can assist in bringing a child abuser to justice?
“The evidence I have experienced is a clamming up, a shutting down, and a silence of almost an obstructive nature to police investigations.
“They are saying they send this out regularly but Judge Lowell Goddard has said not to – so why haven’t they instructed the elders and said that although they usually do this but this year we won’t because we want to follow this request?
“They say it’s what they have always done but we have got to change what we have always done.”
Karen Morgan, a victim of sex abuse by church elder Mark Sewell, who was once an elder in the congregation in Barry, Vale of Glamorgan, also criticised the move.
She said: “At the time of my case the police were told there was no paperwork relating to my case as it had been destroyed. This paperwork would have contained all documented evidence from the many meetings with elders.
“Despite knowing the importance of these papers the governing body seem to be deliberately instructing their elders not to keep them.
Church 'committed' to helping victims
“This only confirms my view that the governing body are more interested in protecting their image than caring about the victims.”
A spokesman for the church said: “We are committed to doing all we can to prevent child abuse and to provide spiritual comfort to any who have suffered from this terrible sin and crime.”
Speaking about the leaked edict the spokesman added: “The document... is simply an annual reminder sent to congregation trustees encouraging them to follow standard procedures so as to meet their responsibilities under data protection and other legislation.”
The spokesman also said: “Jehovah’s Witnesses abhor child abuse and view it as a heinous crime and sin. The safety of our children is of the utmost importance.
“For decades our journals The Watchtower and Awake!, as well as our website jw.org, have featured articles for both Jehovah’s Witnesses and the general public on how to protect children from abuse.
Cover-up claim 'absolutely false'
“We have no paid clergy. Congregation elders comply with child-abuse reporting laws and with the data protection principles contained in the Data Protection Act 1998. (Romans 13:1) They provide abuse victims and their families with spiritual comfort from the Bible. (Isaiah 32:2; 1 Thessalonians 5:14)
“The victim and his or her parents have the absolute right to report the matter to the governmental authorities. (Galatians 6:5) Congregation elders do not shield abusers from the authorities or from the consequences of their actions. (Galatians 6:7)
“Anyone who commits the sin of child abuse faces expulsion from the congregation. If such a person is serving in a position of responsibility he is removed. Any suggestion that Jehovah’s Witnesses cover up child abuse is absolutely false."
A spokesperson for the Independent Inquiry into Child Sexual Abuse said: “The chair has stated that the inquiry will investigate abuse in religious settings (including all faiths and religious traditions) and issued a letter giving notice of retention/non-destruction of documents to the leaders of 18 prominent religious organisations.”
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