We have a unique amalgam of traditional, continental and common law. It is an appropriate symbol for our system. Will the number of women in government and the law grow significantly in the foreseeable future? Yes, things are changing. Before, women remained housewives. Now women are becoming career-oriented with nuclear families. The first 25 students will be accepted into the new law school in Thimphu later this year.
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Does training young lawyers in Bhutan change jurisprudence here? Also, study of environmental law will be required as a priority since Article 5 of our constitution mandates that Bhutan maintain 60 percent forestation at all times. Polyandry, wedding multiple husbands, and polygamy still exist in Bhutan. Indeed, King Singye has four wives, all sisters. Do you think polyandry and polygamy will decline as Bhutan modernizes?
In the long term it should but one aspect behind taking multiple spouses is to keep land familial. It may take some time. Land is a major issue. How will basic services be delivered to the more than 60 percent of Bhutanese that live in rural areas? It is happening but it needs to be prioritized. It becomes a political issue, since fulfilling social needs will be required if politicians wish to get re-elected at elections held every five years.
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Kidu, the duty to care for people, is fundamental to Bhutanese social structure. How can Kidu be reconciled with the changes that are necessary in order to modernize?
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We need the Kidu system because of the safety valve it provides. This is the basis for our humanity, coming from Buddhist compassion. Kidu is becoming institutionalized and will likely be with us forever. That our king constantly travels throughout the country to speak with the populace and evaluate their needs comes from Kidu. How do you reconcile your upbringing in Bhutan under an absolute monarchy with your travel, education and knowledge of the rule of law?
It has not been difficult, since even under the absolute monarchy we had the rule of law. Grateful for the life we shared together, we were ready to be greeted by the guests and staff of St. Francis House each day. I will never forget that sense of belonging, the feeling that everything was right in the world; I was surrounded by soul mates, our small community that would change my life. It was in these moments that I fell in love with these individuals and the countless others that formed us, fell in love with the journey we were on, fell in love with the man with whom I would spend the rest of my life.
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During that year, and the many years that followed, we experienced the power of community. Because of our volunteer year with the Franciscans, Doug and I knew from the very beginning of our relationship that nurturing a sense of community, both local and long distance, would be the crucial link that would sustain our marriage. The desire to serve grew within us as a couple.
We took all that we learned from the Franciscans and ventured to St. From there we held hands and followed our calling to Africa with Maryknoll Lay Missioners. About ten years after our arrival in Tanzania, all roads led to Bolivia with our three kids- all under five years old at the time. Our Franciscan support network was widened to include the Maryknoll world.
We quickly found that these global communities are strongly intertwined. Was it a coincidence that we were in Bolivia at the same time as two other former Franciscan Volunteers? I think not.
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It was incredible being surrounded by Franciscans and Maryknollers while in Africa and South America. As our bonds of community strengthened, so did our marriage. These communities are life-giving and reinforce the values that we share as a couple and as a family. Over all these years we have been blessed with countless people and experiences that have changed our life. Off the dusty beaten path there is a small cloister situated in the hills of Mwanza, Tanzania.
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I will never forget the moment when I looked up from prayer and noticed an adaptation of a quote from Dag Hammarskjol painted on the cracked plastered walls of this chapel next to the Swahili translation: The mercies of God I will sing forever. For all that has been, thanks! For all that shall be, yes! Each day we celebrate the blessings and challenges of our vocation. Marriage is fulfilling but marriage is hard. Our lives are woven together.
And we are grateful. Thanks to all the volunteers who shared their love story for this post! The Visitation. There is no Greater Medicine than Compassion. Community and Recruiting at the Fairs. Search Volunteer Opportunities With over different programs in the Catholic Volunteer Network community — you have a wide variety of service opportunities to choose from.
Our online database can help you sort through programs based on the criteria that is most important to you. Search Now. Shaun Bythell. Your review has been submitted successfully. Not registered? Forgotten password Please enter your email address below and we'll send you a link to reset your password. Not you? Forgotten password? Forgotten password Use the form below to recover your username and password. New details will be emailed to you. Simply reserve online and pay at the counter when you collect.
- A judicious view of the emergence of modern Bhutan.
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