Thomas Froese

 author & journalist | life & letters

June 18, 2016
by Thomas Froese

A world where the beautiful and terrible live side by side

(The Hamilton Spectator – Saturday, June 18, 2016)

HAMILTON, CANADA ✦ It was my daughter’s first teenage birthday party and the family van was full of giggling girls.

The verdict on the Tim Bosma trial wasn’t in, not yet, when we pulled into the bowling ally across from Carmen’s banquet hall and I said, “Tim Bosma’s funeral was in that hall. And his wedding too.”

Silence fell. One girl said it was terrible what happened to Tim. Then my barely 13-year-old asked, “Why would they have his wedding and funeral at the same place?”
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May 23, 2016
by Thomas Froese

Home is a place of God’s differences

(The UCU Standard – Monday, May 23, 2016)

MUKONO, UGANDA ✦ It was in Canada and we were at a campy lakeside retreat, and it was a beautiful summer day and a gaggle of children were playing outside the large window near where we ate.

My daughter, that is my adopted Ugandan daughter, Hannah, looked at me with a tear rolling down her cheek. I asked her what was the matter, and, looking down in shame, she said, “I’m the only black person here.” Continue reading

May 20, 2016
by Thomas Froese

The mouse and the dishwasher

(The Hamilton Spectator – Saturday, May 20, 2016)

HAMILTON, CANADA ✦ So it’s the middle of the night and my wife walks into the bedroom and says: “There’s a mouse in the dishwasher.”

This is strange even for our household, the sort of announcement that suggests my wife is hallucinating from working way too late, again, or that I’m having one of those dreams. Continue reading

May 6, 2016
by Thomas Froese

The unknown boy and finding hope in dark places

(The Hamilton Spectator – Saturday, May 6, 2016)

ATHENS ✦ I’ll never forget the unknown boy and his horrible end, not any more than I’ll forget Arash and his eyes on the day we met when the waters of the Mediterranean were cold. Continue reading

April 22, 2016
by Thomas Froese

An airport cross-point in Brussels

(The Hamilton Spectator – Saturday, April 22, 2016)

BRUSSELS-ZAVENTUM AIRPORT ✦ Once upon a time (otherwise known as “the old days,”) people would watch news on their old televisions, or listen on their old radios, or pick up old newspapers that even landed on their front porches (remember front porches?) with a thud. Continue reading

March 22, 2016
by Thomas Froese

Light and darkness on screen

(The New Vision – Tuesday, March 22, 2016)

KAMPALA, UGANDA ✦ It’s the foolish things of this world that can shame the wise and the weak that can upend the strong. This is how it was put a couple of millennia ago by the apostle Paul when he foreshadowed this great reversal, this deep sorting out that will be known only fully in the hereafter.

But it’s the story-tellers in the here-and-now who often say the very same thing, and you’d have to be blind or deaf or both not to see it in the new Star Wars movie, “Episode VII: The Force Awakens,” which recently made it here to Uganda. Continue reading

March 19, 2016
by Thomas Froese

Grab death and scream “mine!” And what does it turn into?

(The Hamilton Spectator – Saturday March 19, 2016)

MUKONO, UGANDA ✦ It was getting late and she, my 12-year-old, sat on the couch and looked into the nothingness and pulled from the air a comment as plain and profound as any.

“You know,” she said, “People don’t know how good they have it.”

This is what happens when you live in Africa. You see things. Life. People. Suffering. Death sometimes. You get perspective.

“They don’t know,” Liz said. “People don’t know.” Canadians don’t know. This is what she said. Continue reading

March 3, 2016
by Thomas Froese

Hello, democracy? This is Africa calling. Again.

(The Hamilton Spectator – Saturday, March 3, 2016)

KAMPALA, UGANDA ✦ Hello? Hello? Can you hear me? Is this you? Democracy? It’s me, Africa, calling. Can we talk? About us? About our relationship? I mean, are you still interested?
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