The City in Focus Newsletter - is a bi-monthly letter written by Thomas J. Cooper that offers insight into common personal, professional and family issues.
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Tom's January 2014 Newsletter
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Friday, 10 January 2014 16:23

January 2014

Lets break the silence around addiction

The world of addictions knows no social boundaries. Many of my good friends have spent years in addiction. Relationships, work and health suffer. They are emotionally, relationally and economically draining. It can take years, if not a lifetime, to regain ones equilibrium.

An addiction is characterized by a compulsive ongoing use of a substance or behaviour despite obvious health and social harms. The world of addictive behaviour is both complicated and costly. Addictions can be the cause for or the result of being mentally unhealthy or both. We can all point to the more public examples of addiction, as people slump over on the sides of streets from drugs or alcohol in the poorest sections of our city. Yet, the truth is addictions are prevalent to some degree in all of our communities. Often we don’t see addictions, even when they are right in front of us.

All of us, to some extent, struggle with addictive behaviour. We don’t always recognize it because we tend to apply our own ideas to what constitutes an addiction. Sources of addiction include: food, sex, alcohol, TV, work, illegal or prescription drugs, exercise, tobacco, gambling, video games, pornography, shopping and really almost anything.

My friend, Dr. Evan Wood, is considered a world leader on the prevention and treatment of addiction. Dr. Wood is quick to remind us that we are all directly or indirectly engaged. He says there are things society could do immediately to save lives and families and ultimately our communities. Please come hear him at our January CIF breakfast.

How do we find hope in this struggle? We need the best help God can give us, which might include: a compassionate understanding of our own addictive nature, approaching addicts as fellow strugglers, seeking the guidance of trained professionals.

May grant that you may be strengthened in your inner being with power through his Spirit, …., as you are being rooted and grounded in ….the love of Christ that surpasses knowledge, so that you may be filled with all the fullness of God. Now to him who by the power at work within us is able to accomplish infinitely far more than all we can ask or imagine. Eph. 3:16-20

Don’t we all need someone who can do “infinitely more than all we can ask or imagine,” as we engage the world of addictions?


Tom Volume 23 Issue 1

Upcoming Events:
Breakfast at St Paul’s Hospital with Dr Evan Wood and Dr Rob Allore SJ Topic: Addiction Friday January 24th
Breakfast at Vancouver Club with speaker Jonathan Cooper Topic : Life at 33 Friday February 14th
BC Leadership Prayer Breakfast Speaker Senator Romeo Dallaire Friday May 16th
NEW EVENT Global Leaders Dinner Thursday May 15th


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