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Good News Story: Facebook Forgiveness

Social media has become a negative connotation in today’s misue of technology. However, in this awesome story a user uses Facebook as a tool for redemption from his past. I hope you like it! Listen here!

 

 

Full article:

Here’s a heartwarming tale of forgiveness via Facebook, just in time for the holiday season.

A man who mugged a stranger outside New York’s American Museum of Natural History in the late 1970s has apologized to his victim after accidentally finding him on Facebook — 35 years later.

Last month, Michael Goodman, 53, was browsing a Facebook post about the closing of H&H Bagels, a popular New York City bagel chain, when he saw Claude Soffel, his mugging victim, among the commenters. Goodman, who now lives in Hilo, Hawaii, decided to publicly apologize — in the comments section.

“You may not remember this,” Goodman wrote on Nov. 19, “but a long, long time ago I walked up the steps of The Museum of Natural History one afternoon, trying to look like a tough guy.

“I have never forgotten the incident or your name (it has sort of haunted me a bit throughout my life) [and] then here I am … reading about my favorite bagel store in the world closing down, and [whose] name do I see but yours,” he continued. “Finally I can say — I’M VERY SORRY that you had to go through that crap that day long ago. I wish it had never happened but it did.”

Soffel, now a 52-year-old life coach in Sag Harbor, N.Y., wrote back accepting Goodman’s apology.

“Clearly you’re a ‘bigger man’ today,” Soffel replied. “Memory is a funny thing. I recognize your name now as well. Any man who draws a line for himself [and says] ‘Today I step forward for myself, my family, and humanity’ is a hero to me. So let us now, jointly, put this in its proper place, behind us.”

Goodman and Soffel did not immediately return requests for comment.

But Goodman told the New York Post that he mugged Soffel to “impress a classmate who didn’t believe I was in a graffiti gang.”

“I went up to him and said, ‘Where’s your bus pass?’ The cops immediately pulled out badges and arrested me,” Goodman recalled. “I told this story throughout my life. I felt so bad about it.”

Goodman said he was sentenced to three weeks of community service, but never had a chance to apologize to Soffel — until now.

“A very large weight has been lifted off my shoulder,” he said. “I feel peace and dare I say joy. I’m even happier this is bringing joy to other people.”

 

 

Nursing home

SACKed Dec. 6, 2013

Happy Friday!  Make plans this weekend to drop by a nursing home with your kids and some goodies!  If you’re short on time, just leave the cookies, but if you have an hour or so, ask the staff which resident could use a hug and a smile!

christmas

Christmas Blues

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A patient recently told me that Christmas music actually makes her feel sad. She’s embarrassed to feel like a Grinch.

 

If you can relate, you’re not alone. The holiday season can be filled with joy, but for many it’s a time of loneliness, reflection on past failures, and anxiety. Many factors cause the holiday blues and extra activities can only add to the stress.

 

Spending time with supportive people can help you cope and so can helping others through volunteering. Also use the approaching New Year as a time to set new goals and to look forward into the future. Stop looking in the rearview mirror.

 

If you have the Christmas views take positive steps to sing a different tune and don’t make things worse by shaming the way you feel. Give yourself the gifts of grace and forgiveness.

 

If you would like to see other blogs by Dr. Walt on this topic, click here and then click on today’s story.

Listen to today’s audio here. 

bully

School Bullies

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Dear Dr. Bill,

I’m in the 9th grade, and I’m dealing with a bully at school.  He is constantly trying to harass me by throwing me into a dumpster or locking me into a school locker.  This guy is in my same grade, and I don’t know what to do.  Do you have any ideas?

–Matt

 

Dear Matt,

I’m sorry to hear this has been happening to you. If you haven’t talked to your parents about this yet, that’s the first thing you should do.  Some kids are embarrassed to tell their parents when they are being harassed by a bully, but your mom and dad need to know.

They should contact the principal and let him or her know what’s going on.  They should also insist that school deal with the bullying—immediately.

You should also go to a teacher or counselor that you trust and let them know what’s been happening.  The best solution would be for the school to have an administrator or security person keep an eye on the bully and then catch him in the act.  Who knows—he may be bullying other kids too.

Matt, bullies will often pick on kids who don’t have many friends.  If that’s the case with you, get to work on meeting some new kids.  You might join a campus club or service organization.

Some school counselors even run groups where kids get a chance to practice things like meeting new people and making friends.  Kids who have even a few friends on campus and hang out in groups are a lot less likely to get picked on by bullies.

There’s also a website you can visit that will give you more ideas on dealing with this bully.  It’s stopbullying.gov.

Thanks for writing, Matt.

 

If you have a question for me about family issues or Christian living, click the “Questions” link on the Family Expert page.

Listen to today’s audio here.