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“Fives before Fives” - Faith Leaders – Canberra Workshop

Another great workshop in Canberra yesterday with a number of faith leaders talking about how we can help the Wounded Spirits among our veterans!

The whole focus of the Faith Leaders workshop is not to talk about religion or theology but to help civilian faith leaders to understand how Defence people think and how best to work with them. Interestingly, one of the things I mentioned and was subsequently picked up by a couple of our Defence speakers was the issue of time. As Defence people know, if we have a meeting at 1 pm that’s actually 13:00. In fact, it actually means that we have to be there five minutes early – 12:55. In fact we often turn up five minutes earlier than that or “fives before fives”.

So why is this important to a civilian faith leader, like a priest or pastor or minister or imam or rabbi? It’s all about credibility with the ex-Defence people in your community. If the faith leader turns up five minutes late the veteran probably won’t say anything but they’ll know and from some part of their background they’ll feel uncomfortable. Being there at fives before fives is a simple thing but it demonstrates understanding and respect for those you are trying to help.

So faith leader, 1 pm means 13: 00 and you need to be there at 12:50 or “fives before fives”.

The picture by the way is of me and the Venerable Tenpe Tenpa Bejanke Duim a representative of the Buddhist faith who joined us.