Home' Trinidad and Tobago Guardian : March 19th 2017 Contents B4 life
guardian.co.tt Sunday, March 19, 2017
Last week, on a visit to my
daughter's school, I happened
to be waiting in the reception
area for a short while.A bold sign
displayed on the notice board
caught my eye, "Be a CLASS act,
have good manners!"
It struck me how much this holds
true not only in daily life but when
it comes to events in general and
weddings, in particular. It's an area
often overlooked after the flurry
of the honeymoon is over and as
newlyweds settle into married life
and back into their working lives,
However, proper etiquette dic-
tates that even if you have thanked
guests in person, you are still ex-
pected to send out a formal note or
card. Thank you cards should always
be handwritten and should contain a
personalised message to your guest.
Your thank you notes should be
sent within six to eight weeks of the
date the gift was received. Although
it does involve "work" (sometimes
writing hundreds of cards), it is a
gesture that guests will appreciate
and remember for years to come.
If you have received a gift from a
group, perhaps co-workers or an-
other association, you are required
to send a thank you card to each per-
son in the group. Should the group's
members be in excess of ten people,
you can do a general thank you card
to the entire organisation.
Here's a fool-proof guide to get
• Keep a detailed list of gifts re-
ceived and from whom.
• Direct the note to all of the gift
givers of the particular gift; with
the names and titles that you are
accustomed to addressing them by.
• Always mention the gift by name
and try as much as possible to avoid
referring to it as "the gift".
• Mention any special effort that
the guest would have made for you
eg, helping you craft a speech, vol-
unteering their time, giving a heart-
felt toast or travelling from abroad.
• State how you plan to use the
gift, particularly if it was a cash
gift. You can say that perhaps you
are putting the monies toward new
appliances or using it for a one-year
• Only if it is realistic for you, you
may also want to mention a future
encounter with the gift givers, for
example, having them over for din-
ner or going out for drinks, but this
is totally optional and depends on
how close you are, to the guests in
Thank you cards need not be
limited to guests alone. They can
also be sent to wedding suppliers
who did exceptional jobs, your of-
ficiant, people who organised the
bridal shower and bachelor party,
and your parents!
There was a time in this coun-
try when incidents of violence or
anger were few and far between.
Of course, there were less peo-
ple, less cars, less roads and
smaller roads and, naturally,less
money. And there is the saying
that money is the root of all evil.
I want you to consider whether
money and the desire to have
more (money) is not really the
major cause for today's upsurge
So we cannot say that the violence
we are now experiencing as a society
is not spurred by the need to have
more money. Remember, money
buys things---the elite class buys
expensive things while the layers
of classes below buys that which is
less expensive, all for the purpose of
showing our friends and neighbours
what we have been able to acquire
good or ill-gotten.
Violence has become such a ter-
rible thing in T&T---against women,
domestic violence, to settle argu-
ments, and to show 'who is badder
than whom' in gang-related activ-
ities---that it has spawned several
movements in the church, all with
the intention of stamping out this
We have the Living Water Com-
munity (LWC) which recently held
an hour-long service with repre-
sentative of different faiths to lend
their perspectives on how active
non-violence can be achieved.
LWC co-founder Rhonda Maingot
told the gathering non-violence is
"a journey, a pilgrimage to becoming
God's true people of peace and love
But more than that, the LWC has
a movement called 'Non-violence
Begins With Me’
, which came out of
a Facebook post by Rhonda Maingot
who wrote, "Violence all over and
you don't know what to do. How
can I make a difference?" And after
a year of discussion, research and
planning was born...40 hours of
prayer, 40 days of action.
According to Candice Clarke-Sal-
loum, a core member of the move-
ment, non-violence is not the avoid-
ance of conflict or confrontation and
neither is it pacifism nor passivity.
Non-violence is the absence of vi-
olence; it is the choice to do harm
to people, the environment and
animals. She said the movement
seeks to cover four key areas: intra-
personal, interpersonal, communi-
ty, and then long term and national
Then we had Fr Clyde Harvey call-
ing for introspection saying recently
that in the midst of violence in the
world Catholics needed to "come
to grips" with the anger within and
their anger toward God.
Speaking to a congregation of
mainly women, he shared with them
his realisation that anger was not
just "ours" but "universal"
are people in society who view crime
and violence in the country as how
"bad" things were and they wanted
In confronting their anger people
also have to forgive themselves, said
Fr Harvey. "Forgive yourself and say
'Lord, I know you are not really re-
sponsible for this'
. It is amazing how
things happen in your life."
He said people venting anger
should not be seen as if they were
"possessed", but Christians can
recognise there is work to be done
and God is asking them to be His
instruments in the "new creation"
Even Archbishop Nicola Gira-
soli, the Papal Nuncio got into the
non-violence theme. Speaking at
the Cathedral of The Immaculate
Conception, he recalled his involve-
ment in the non-violence move-
ment in the 60s and the "strong
slogan" of the time "non-violence
is the answer"
. Another slogan was
"non-violence is not a word, it is
a dictionary". He said this meant
non-violence has many meanings,
among them health, and reconcil-
iation. He said strong slogans and
sentiments were needed now.
Micheal Sipaul and Candice Lorance Sipaul got married on January 7,
2017, at Drew Manor in Santa Cruz.
Be an instrument of peace
Guide to writing thank you notes WEDDING BELLS
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