Dear Inner Circle,

“Torrid” is one way of explaining life here just lately. We had a fellow attempt to take his own life with a rope although he fell into the capable and compassionate hands of Una before he came close to doing himself damage. Another dear lady, under the influence of ICE, suddenly produced a knife and threatened two of our staff. The saddest part of this situation was that she was threatening the person who loves her in this world the most. I’m thankful for highly trained and disciplined staff members who handled this according to long-practiced policy. The person was soon enough contained behind a locked door. Police responded quickly and soon enough the lady was in custody and on her way to psychiatric help. To top off a busy few days, on Sunday while our little church was on, a lady at our front door suddenly produced a knife and cut her own arm open causing a dramatic, spurting bleed. If that was me, I would have fainted, but this lady ran, fast. Our staff who were concerned that excessive blood loss could be fatal, also ran, fast. The outcome was a quick resolution where medical care and psychiatric care were put in place. Fabulous work on the part of all our people but you’ll understand that while they look pretty relaxed, they are on their toes all the time.

Quite often, members of our inner circle write back to me with stories that resonate with something I’ve written. I have to share this one with you (with permission) because it made me laugh out loud.

Dear Graham,
I always love reading your "Inner Circle" letters. When I read your comments on rules in the latest one, "wisdom is a tricky business", I thought you might enjoy this little story. I went to mass yesterday for Ash Wednesday and because it's a day on which Catholics come out of the woodwork to go to church, the church itself filled up quickly and the overflow was directed to a hall underneath. We were sitting on chairs waiting for the priest when a nicely dressed man standing towards the back (a church warden apparently?) said in a booming voice, "Please turn your phones off. It's rude to have them on." ...so far so good... "And if you don't like our rules, you can f*** off." Well, that's telling it like it is! (A few more interjections made it clear he probably had some kind of mental health issue. To state the obvious, one hopes that those outraged by the breaking of rules about appropriate language in a church could look past that.)
Best wishes

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