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Category Archives: Church

Fake News and a good laugh

Everywhere I go people are talking about FAKE NEWS.

They make it sound like a new phenomenon but I was reminded of a post I put up on this blog way back 6 years ago and I thought it was worth repeating.

Here it is. It was titled

 

The Biker, The Hungry Lion and Housesitting

LionAs I was reading a report on housesitting in the Guardian I was reminded of this old but still funny story:

A biker is riding by the zoo, when he sees a little girl leaning into  the lion’s cage. Suddenly, the lion grabs her by the cuff of her jacket  and tries to pull her inside to slaughter her, under the eyes of her screaming parents. The biker jumps off his bike, runs to the cage and hits the lion square on the nose with a powerful punch.

Whimpering from the pain the lion jumps back letting go of the girl, and the biker brings her to her terrified parents, who thank him endlessly.

A reporter has seen the whole scene, and addressing the biker, says  Sir, this was the most gallant and brave thing I saw a man do in my whole life. 

Why, it was nothing, really, the lion was behind bars. I just saw this little kid in danger, and acted as I felt right.

Well, I’ll make sure this won’t go unnoticed. I’m a journalist, you know, and tomorrow’s papers will have this on the first page. What motorcycle do you ride?

A Harley Davidson.

The following morning the biker buys the paper to see if it indeed brings news of his actions, and reads, on the first page:

BIKER GANG MEMBER ASSAULTS AFRICAN IMMIGRANT AND STEALS HIS LUNCH

Fake News
As I said I was reading an article in The Guardian that reminded me of that story. The headline says Find a housesitter – for free.

And the article goes on to talk at length about a company who offer to find you a suitable sitter. But in my opinion the headline is very misleading!  (Or to use today’s language it is FAKE NEWS.)

Yes registration is indeed free BUT the article continues by saying that once a suitable sitter is found you will have to pay the agency for their services. This is not free and I find the cost expensive. According to the article  someone with two pets could pay £772.80 (approx $1500)  for a two-week stint

I believe that we offer a far better solution.

And our service is available worldwide.

With Christian House Sitters registration as a Home Owner needing a sitter is FREE

Once you have a suitable sitter they will come and look after your home and pets and this is once again FREE

Why pay £772 (approx $1000) for 2 weeks when we offer a Free alternative?

But what about security? All our sitters are members of a recognised Christian church, supply the details of their church leader/minister/ pastor and they will provide the owner with references from a church leader and at least one other person.

If you are thinking of a vacation and want someone to look after your home please visit our website and register as an owner.

Register as soon as you know your vacation dates, don’t leave it to the last-minute, as that way you will have a much better range of sitters to choose from.

If you want to be a sitter and to enjoy a rent-free vacation then we can also help.

Have a look at the website for the details. CLICK HERE

God bless you,

Ray

We are part of the registered charity

TLC Children’s Trust

UK Charity number 1156786

www.tlc-childrenstrust.org

WordPress are adding adverts to blogs. They are not always shown but if there are adverts on this page please note they were not placed by me, not approved by me and do not imply my recommendation

Latest News Report

It is always lovely when someone else says nice things about you. 

I was therefore delighted to receive a copy of the following article written by Rev Dr Ali Green and published in the Holy Trinity Church. Bradford on Avon, Wiltshire. March 2017 news.

Here is a copy:

Home of Peace

Each time I go on holiday I have a house sitter to care for pets and plants – and the sitter gets a holiday, too, in lovely Bradford on Avon. A modest amount of money is generated from this scheme by the organizing charity, Christian House Sitters, run by Ray and Marilyn White. All the funds raised go to a very special family in Kenya.

A Caring Home

This is the Home of Peace, an interdenominational children’s home in which a dedicated team looks after 53 children. The staff of 14 includes the Manager, the Administrator and a Qualified Social Worker. They are overseen by Marilyn on a daily basis. Ray and Marilyn are responsible for all the financial needs of the Home of Peace and oversee the work, monitoring where every penny is spent, under the UK Registered Charity TLC Children’s Trust, and are closely monitored by the Trustees.

Many of the youngsters’ parents have died from AIDS, typhoid, malaria or other diseases and as a result they were left homeless and to had fend for themselves because their home village was too poor to take on an extra hungry child. Some children, as young as three or four years old, were taken from their tiny villages in the bush and dumped in the town of Siaya because the family could no longer look after them. Once in Siaya they were simply left and had to beg or steal to survive.

Thanks to the Home of Peace these children now have a home, medical care and clothing, and they attend a local school. The manager recently purchased two sewing machines and employed a qualified seamstress to make all the children’s play clothes, church clothes, school uniforms and the staff uniforms. She also repairs any damaged clothing – a big longterm money-saver.

Following a major storm last year the home had to undertake a major building project. This resulted in two new boys’ dormitories, two staff bedrooms, a laundry, additional toilets and washing facilities, a new water storage tank and the conversion of a temporary dining room into a permanent structure.

Showing their new shoes

Happy Feet: The children show off their new Christmas shoes

Last Christmas the Home of Peace sent out an appeal to all members of Christian House Sitters and their response allowed the children to get new shoes and underwear and to celebrate Christmas with a special meal. Residents invited local boys and girls to join them for Christmas dinner. These were children who would otherwise not have had a special meal at Christmas.

Help for a Needy Family

A few weeks ago the Home of Peace Social Worker reported coming across a local household that captured her attention. She took a picture of their house and wrote: “It is a nuclear family with five children. Both parents are alive but are living from hand to mouth. My concern was the fourth born girl, ten years old. I was shocked. The mother said she has not been going to school because of lack of food. She seems weak and febrile.

Their homestead is a one-roomed thatched house with a small table sketchily structured at the centre of the room. Nothing to sit on, a papyrus mat spread at the corner as the family bed. They are indeed in abject poverty.”

Her home

Home of Peace arranged some emergency food for the family and contacted Children’s Services to see what else could be done.

Shortly after Christmas I received a message from Ray: “I am delighted to say that we have managed to sort out all the red tape and this young girl is now living safely at Home of Peace, getting nutritious meals, having good health care, getting an education and is happy. Her parents are also thrilled.”

You can find out more about the Home of Peace and Christian House Sitters at www.christianhousesitters.com

Rev Dr Ali Green

Our sincere thanks to Rev Dr Green for the article.

God bless you,

Ray

We are part of the registered charity

TLC Children’s Trust

UK Charity number 1156786

www.tlc-childrenstrust.org

WordPress are adding adverts to blogs. They are not always shown but if there are adverts on this page please note they were not placed by me, not approved by me and do not imply my recommendation

“A Diary of House-Sitting Tails”

A diary of house-sitting tails

I am naturally always interested to read about House Sitting so when I found out about a book called “A Diary of House-Sitting Tails” by Carolyn Slingsby I downloaded a copy from Amazon.

I was thrilled to read about our ministry in this book!

Here is an extract from the first couple of pages:

At the end of November 2008, after living and working in Spain for six years, my husband and I suddenly and devastatingly lost everything, and had no choice but to head back to the UK.

Brian and I had gone to Spain six years previously in 2002, knowing nobody there at all, and we began totally from scratch. I knew I had to find my feet, so I quickly became resourceful in finding jobs, mainly in the property market. At one time, I helped a company to sell villas and apartments, focusing mainly on marketing, but I had other duties, too. Once, I had to do a complete ‘makeover’ on a property, which turned out to be a total full cleaning and fumigation exercise. The property in question was in a terrible condition, covered in excrement and filth which stank to high heaven; he had kept five dogs there, and hadn’t done much in the way of cleaning! Eventually –after hours of cleaning and sorting –I managed to find a buyer, but it still smelled if you were downwind! It was only months later that I realised why I was so ill after that experience.

We loved Spain and its people, and it was our fantastic church community who helped us through the very traumatic ending to our lifestyle there, when –due to the economic climate –we lost our villa and all our money, and had only forty-eight hours to leave and hand the keys back to the bank.

Our compassionate congregation bought all our furniture, including the wood burning stove and very large satellite dish (which went off on the roof of an estate car!), to raise us enough money for petrol to drive back to the UK. We stored ten boxes, containing our various small everyday goods, in the under-house storage of one of those kind church folk, where it ended up staying for two years!

So, back in the UK and having to start again from scratch, we knew we had to survive and get a roof over our heads whilst we worked out what direction life was taking us in.

This was when God led us to The Christian House Sitters website! We found two separate house sits in France on our way back to the UK in December and January 2008-2009, and so began our ‘Tails of House Sitting’ –adventures and experiences we would have missed out on if not for the traumatic ending of our life in Spain!

The book is a lot of fun and well worth reading.

If you have interesting stories about House Sitting please share them with me.

Would you like a break from your normal daily grind. Time to getaway, relax, renew relationships, rest, have fun and generally recharge your inner batteries.

We can help.

We offer rent-free vacations all over the world and, if necessary, we can also arrange for someone reliable to look after your home and pets free-of-charge while you are away

If you would like to benefit from our service please have a look at the website. CLICK HERE.

God bless you,
Ray

 

Christian House Sitters
is part of the registered charity
TLC Children’s Trust
UK Charity number 1156786
www.tlc-childrenstrust.org

WordPress are adding adverts to blogs. They are not always shown but if there are adverts on this page please note they were not placed by me, not approved by me and do not imply my recommendation

Visiting Medieval English Towns

Medieval England

I posted this article in my blog a few years ago but felt an urge to re-post it as we now have so many new readers.

I love it when our members take the iniative and write about their experiences. This is an extract from an article that was written by a Canadian house sitter who visited England and was printed in Cathedral Connections.  St Peter’s London Ontario

A UNIQUE ADVENTURE – HOUSESITTING IN MEDIEVAL ENGLAND
By Joyce Hilton

At some point we all think about a dream vacation, especially one that costs little and allows you to enhance your love of Christianity and its history and architecture.

My dream vacation and journey began when I stumbled across a website that promised just that. It was called Christian House Sitters, an Internet based service that brought Christian home owners and Christian house sitters together.

Christians home owners who wanted to take a holiday and needed some one to look after their home and! or their pets while away could apply. The other side of the service accommodated persons who could not afford a holiday but would now be enabled to take a break and see other countries. Their only expense would be the cost of travel and their food.

It was totally Christian based and required everyone involved to have a reference from their church.
The registration cost was twenty dollars Canadian for the year which allowed me access to information about various properties in different countries that required a house sitter.

A couple in Norwich, England advertised for a sitter for three months. I was born in England and wanted to experience the atmosphere of its medieval history and churches. Norwich seemed like a perfect fit! It is a church enthusiast’s paradise. It possesses more medieval churches than any other English City. There is an old saying in Norwich that there are 52 churches for every week of the year and 365 pubs for every day of the day. (My interest was in the former.)

In addition to its great cathedral and the ruins of three other buildings, there are thirty-one other parishes in Norwich that have survived.

I arrived in England in early January of this year and met my awesome hosts who were leaving in the next few days for New Zealand.

Before they left, they drove me to Great Yarmouth, a city on the east coast of England situated about fifty miles away. Along the way, we stopped to look at the ruins of a thirteenth century Augustinian Priory. Even though the walls had eroded to half their size and roofs had long disappeared, you sensed that this was once a holy place and the likely home of earlier saints.

It was the first step in my quest to visit ancient holy places.  I left realizing that I was a part of a much larger faith community, one that transcends countries and history.

~~~~~~~~~~~~

kitty

So if you are thinking of going on vacation let me briefly remind you how we can help you. Remember we operate worldwide. So wherever you are this applies to you.

You can register as a Home Owner and that means we will make your house details known to our large list of sitters all over the world and they will then be able to contact you and offer to look after your house and your pets free of charge. Registration as a home owner is free. There are no charges.

You can register with us as a House Sitter. That will mean that you get access to all the houses that are made available, all over the world, for 12 months. If you like what you see you can contact the owner and apply for the house. All houses are rent free. registration as a Sitter will cost £25 per year. All the money will go through our registered Charity to support needy children at Home of Peace Children’s Home in Kenya. For details about the home CLICK HERE. Note 100% of income goes to the Children’s Home Marilyn and I personally cover the cost of running Christian House Sitters.

You can register as both a Sitter and as a Owner.

TO REGISTER VISIT OUR WEBSITE: CLICK HERE  (www.Christian-Housesitters.com)

God bless you,

Ray

We are part of the registered charity

TLC Children’s Trust

UK Charity number 1156786

http://www.tlc-childrenstrust.org

WordPress are adding adverts to blogs. They are not always shown but if there are adverts on this page please note they were not placed by me, not approved by me and do not imply my recommendation

8 Important Questions

Questions

I get asked a lot of questions about House Sitting as it is a very new concept to many people (Although it has actually been available for many years) so I decided to devote this blog post to answering some common questions.

 

WHAT IS IT?

In essence it is very simple. A House Sitter moves into your home while you are away on vacation. They look after your home and pets for you and in return they receive a rent free vacation in your home.
The house owner saves money by not having to pay anyone to look after their home and pets. They have the security of knowing that their home and pets are being looked after by a responsible Christian.
The House Sitter gets to travel and stay in lovely homes rather than an expensive and often characterless hotel room.

Another questionWHAT HAPPENS?
When you register as an owner we list your house details (without the specific address) on the restricted section of our website that can only be viewed by registered sitters. We also email all registered sitters drawing their attention to the listing.
Sitters then decide which houses they are interested in and click an enquiry button. That automatically sends the owners their details and their profile info. Then it is over to the owner to make contact and decide which application they like best, check references and arrange the sit.

IS IT SAFE?
Naturally one has to take precautions. We strongly advise all home owners to get two references before entering into any agreement. As this is a Christian site and all members must list their church connection we suggest one of the reference should be obtained from their church leaders. We also include a general outline of an agreement for both parties to sign.

PuzzledWHO CAN JOIN?
Any Christian who belongs to a recognised Christian Church. People can register as a House Sitters, a Home Owners or as Both.

CAN YOU GUARANTEE US A SUITABLE HOUSE SIT?
Sadly not. The list of available properties is constantly changing. New houses are added and existing properties find sitters. We are facilitators and have no idea what houses or sitters are going to become available in the future. We never know from one day to the next what is coming and what is going to be removed. For example we had a message from someone asking about a house in Florida. We wrote back saying that we did not have any. The very next day we got a house 5 minutes from Disney World available for 2 months. God is in control. We trust that He will provide the right match between owners and sitters.

More questionsWHY DON’T YOU HAVE MORE HOUSES LIKE SOME SECULAR SITES?
There are a couple of reasons. Firstly our pool of potential members is naturally smaller as we only accept people who are members of a recognised Christian church.
But that is not the only reason. I have been doing some research. In fact in order to do the research I ended up having to join a few secular sites. I discovered that most of the houses shown on their sites are not actually available. This is because many of these sites do not remove any listing until the end of the available period. We on the other hand ask our members to inform us as soon as a house is taken and we then immediately remove the listing. his saves our sitters the frustration of applying for houses that are no longer available. To be honest occasionally owners do forget to inform us. But as soon as a sitter lets us know that they are not getting a reply from an owner or that the owner has replied saying the house has been taken we investigate and if the house has been taken we remove that listing.
Finally our houses are made available for vacations purposes. Through my research into some of the secular sites I was astounded to see that a lot are not vacation offers but simply a way of trying to get free labour.
Here are some real examples “Someone with building experience to help with renovation of the house. ” Another said ” Nightwatch the hotel do some gardening, some cleaning, sometimes making breakfast, welcoming clients. Check in clients. In spring and summer we have our own staff which you will be ‘ working’ with. In winter you will be alone, working with us.”
To my way of thinking these are not vacations. They are job opportunities and for jobs with no wages.
Our listings are for a genuine vacation!

Resting on QuestionWHY DO YOU CHARGE and WHAT DOES IT COST?
In addition to providing Free Holidays we also seek to support the work of Home of Peace Children’s Home in Kenya. 100% of all our income goes to this Christian Children’s Home.
Registration as an owner is free.
Registration as a sitter is only £25 per year. All of which goes to supporting a Christian Children’s Home in Kenya. The cost of running the service is covered by my wife and I as a service.
Answering Questions
HOW DO I JOIN?
Visit our website Click Here and click on Register then follow the simple on screen instructions.

 

If you have any  other questions that are not answered on the website please use the contact page and I will do my best to answer you promptly.

Is this for you?

Have a look at our website www.Christian-housesitters.com

God bless you,

Ray

We are part of the registered charity

TLC Children’s Trust

UK Charity number 1156786

www.tlc-childrenstrust.org

WordPress are adding adverts to blogs. They are not always shown but if there are adverts on this page please note they were not placed by me, not approved by me and do not imply my recommendation

Featured in Sight Magazine

Posted on

The following is an article that appeared in SIGHT MAGAZINE AUSTRALIA on the 6th of July 2016

MY MISSION: A CHRISTIAN ALTERNATIVE TO FINDING A HOME AWAY FROM HOME (AND SUPPORTING CHILDREN IN KENYA AS YOU DO SO)

6th July, 2016

DAVID ADAMS

Sight Magazine Australia

Ray and Marilyn White, former owners of a Christian counseling centre in the UK, didn’t have the money to go on expensive holidays when they retired, meaning they had to find a way to do so – without paying full price.

Hearing about a house-sitting organisation which offered people the chance to look after someone’s else’s home while they were away, they registered and ended up living in a property in France for three months. While Dr White says it was a “wonderful experience”, they did have times of loneliness and couldn’t find a church. There were also some statues and other things left around the house which he says, as Christians, made them feel uncomfortable.
sightmag1
“Marilyn said that next time we should use a Christian organisation,” the South-African born 69-year-old recalls. “So we searched and could not find one anywhere. Marilyn therefore suggested we start one, which we did, and the result is Christian House Sitters.”

The organisation, which is based out of their home in Somerset, aims to bring together Christian home-owners and house-sitters by providing a website and email service which they can use to find each other.

“If you register as a home-owner, we help you find a house-sitter to move into your home while you are away on vacation,” says Dr White, who has previously worked in business, for Youth For Christ and as a pastor, and who still, as well as writing books, runs an “active preaching ministry” and takes seminars on subjects such as stress management for church groups.

“(The house-sitter) will look after your home and pets for you free-of-charge and in return they receive a rent-free vacation in your home. So, as an owner you save money by not having to pay anyone to look after your home and pets. You also have the security of knowing that your home and pets are being looked after by a responsible Christian.”
The benefits for those who register as house-sitters is also somewhat obvious – they “get to travel and stay rent-free in lovely homes all over the world rather than in expensive and, often characterless, hotel rooms”.
People wanting to advertise their house will have its details, excluding the exact address, listed on a protected area of the organisation’s website where registered would-be house-sitters can find them. All registered sitters are also emailed about the listing. Sitters can then register their interest with a particular property and their details are sent on to the home-owner. It’s then up to the home-owner to make contact, check references and arrange the ‘sit’ (a draft agreement is provided on the website).

Dr White says he and his wife insist that all who apply must be a member of a Christian church.

“We then email the pastor of their church and say that they have registered with us and given him as a reference,” he says. “We tell him that he can expect to be contacted by home-owners seeking a reference from him about these people. If he indicates that this is all satisfactory we register them. If they can’t supply these details or if the pastor is not willing to vouch for them, membership is refused.”

Properties listed range from apartments to large family houses with the length of time they are available anywhere from a week to a year, although between two to four weeks is more typical.
wds2

sightmag2

The profile of the house-sitters varies widely.

“We have families with children, single people, missionaries on furlough, ministers wanting a holiday that they can afford, retired people,” Dr White says.

More than 1,000 people have registered on the site since it commenced and current members live in 15 countries, mostly in Europe but also including Australia and New Zealand, the US and Canada.

While home-owners pay no fee to register on the site, sitters pay £25 (or equivalent) a year. All of this money is used to support a Christian children’s home in Kenya – The Home of Peace Children’s Home – which Mrs White took over the responsibility for raising funds for in 2010 after the UK church which had supported the organisation decided they could no longer continue to do so.

The Whites have since set up a registered charity – the TLC Children’s Trust – to raise funds for the home which is officially registered with the Kenyan Government.

Asked what they love most about running Christian House Sitters, Dr White says it’s the connections they make all across the globe.

“We love getting email from people all over the world telling us how God has used Christian House Sitters to enable them to have a holiday that they really needed but could not afford. Knowing we have made a real difference gives us a thrill.”

 

www.christian-housesitters.com

~ www.tlc-childrenstrust.org

 

End of the article.

VISIT OUR WEBSITE: CLICK HERE  (www.Christian-Housesitters.com)
God bless you,
Ray

We are part of the registered charity

TLC Children’s Trust

UK Charity number 1156786

http://www.tlc-childrenstrust.org

WordPress are adding adverts to blogs. They are not always shown but if there are adverts on this page please note they were not placed by me, not approved by me and do not imply my recommendation

Where would you like to go? Rent-Free

I am often asked what sort of houses are available through Christian House Sitters and where they are located.

It is a really hard question to answer as the list changes all the time but to give an idea here is a selection of SOME of the houses available today on the site. Remember these are all offered Rent-Free.

NOTE I am not listing all the details for each house just some key points.

House in ClivedenENGLAND
The house is situated near Cliveden, Near to Burnham Bucks but on the border of Berkshire near Maidenhead and Windsor

The house is large and has 6 Bedrooms,.

Downstairs rooms including lounge, dining room, playroom, breakfast room and kitchen. The breakfast room is equipped with an Aga and usual kitchen appliances including Microwave, Washing machine and Dishwasher.

 

GUILDFORDGuildford
It is a large detached house set in a very quiet part of Guildford on the edge of a large area of countryside, but within easy access of the town and train station. The Guildford to London train takes just 40 minutes.

We are close to a number of National Trust properties and just 10 minutes from the famous RHS Wisley gardens.

Guildford is a very picturesque town with its own cathedral castle and many beautiful surrounding places of interest for all tastes.

The house comprises a large lounge, dining room, study, conservatory, kitchen and utility room alongside a double garage.

Upstairs are 4 bedrooms (1 double and 3 single)and 2 bathrooms ( 1 en suite) one of the bathrooms has a bath also.

The kitchen has a microwave, dishwasher and good storage space whilst the utility room houses the washing machine.

The lounge has a TV and the Internet connection is available along with the telephone.

FRANCESt Antonin Noble Val
4 months in a rural situation, it is quiet & clean with no near neighbours.

Near St Antonin Noble Val

There is a large garden, acres of woodland & meadows, fantastic walking from the door & loads of places to explore, local markets, ancient villages, stunning scenery.

 

CANADASaskatoon
Saskatoon
Located just 5 miles west of the city on an acreage.
5 bedrooms
Two baths shower and jet tub.
Kitchen fully equipped with microwave oven stove washer dryer.
We will make available a vehicle.
Wifi
TV and satellite

 

NEW ZEALANDGisborne
Gisborne
Our house is situated in an elevated position about 5 km from the city centre, overlooking the hills and the sea in the distance. The town is about 45 mins brisk walk. We have three beautiful beaches within five minutes drive of the house.

There are one double and one single bedroom, and one bathroom with shower and bath.

The kitchen has hob, oven, microwave, dishwasher, toaster, sandwich toaster, slow cooker, wok, washing machine.

Our car will be available for sitters to use while they are here.

AUSTRALIAMelbourne
Melbourne
We own a beautiful brick attic house, with spectacular landscape gardens, our backyard is a mini tropical paradise, a place for relaxation, reading or just enjoying the ambiance.

We live in sunshine, Melbourne, Vic Australia, in a quiet family orientated pocket of tree lined streets, that connect to a wonderful park, which has a bike, walking trail, and a place all the locals meet up with there canine friends, It is a very friendly community.

Our house is double story with living area on lower level, bedroom with ensuite on the top floor, and fully equipped gym room to use at leisure.

USAMount Rainer
Spanaway, Washington
The House is in Spanaway, Washington (state). By auto: one half hour South of Tacoma, one hour South of Seattle, 45 minutes from SeaTac (SEA, Seattle-Tacoma International Airport). The home is 4 years old. We are 3 minutes from a small shopping area (Safeway supermarket, Starbuck’s, restaurants, etc) and less than 15 minutes from a large mall with hundreds of businesses between here and the mall. We are about an hour from the entrance to Mount Rainier National Park. Our church is 2 miles and less than 5 minutes away

You could be enjoying a rent-free vacation in one of these or one of the many other houses that we get all over the world.

Also if you need someone honest, reliable and with references to look after your home and if necessary your pets while you are away. Even if you are not in one of our houses. We will help you find someone free-of-charge.
Have a look at our website www.Christian-housesitters.com

God bless you,

Ray

We are part of the registered charity

TLC Children’s Trust

UK Charity number 1156786

www.tlc-childrenstrust.org

WordPress are adding adverts to blogs. They are not always shown but if there are adverts on this page please note they were not placed by me, not approved by me and do not imply my recommendation

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