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Showing posts from January, 2017

The Last to Leave

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This is my third attempt.  The first was Abandoned.  The second was Abandoned Again.  And this is my last attempt; I've rewritten this to death. The Last to Leave
The caller ID on my phone read, “Jill Byron.”  I had just been to a meeting with Jill, a couple of hours ago.  I quickly picked up the phone.  “Hello.”
Shocked!  I heard crying.  “You left me alone!  I was alone.  It was dark.  I was scared—all alone!”
I-I-I didn’t know what to respond.  I thought back. 
Jill was traveling from Medfield to Holliston’s Community Center.  She didn’t know the way.  We made arrangements to meet at a shopping plaza on Rte. 109, in Medway.  The actual directions were simple.  I’m sure she could have found the Holliston Community Center on Rte. 126, herself.  All you do is take Rte. 109 until it intersects with Rte. 126.  Then you take Rte. 126 towards Holliston, until you come to your destination. 
And we did meet at the plaza and she followed me to the meeting, which wasn’t long.   It just ended …

Coloring the Book of Kells

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Since hubby and I are visiting Ireland in the spring, we have put seeing the Book of Kells on our itinerary.  The book dates circa 800 A.D.  It was made by monks, stolen a few times but still is a beautiful example of art and history.  To get the most out of our experience, I am reading up on the Book of Kells.  I also bought a coloring book on the Book of Kells and I'm surprised by two things.  One, I'm learning more about the book from the coloring book, than the nonfiction book.  The coloring book explains what you are looking at; the book--not so much.  Compare the coloring book explaining that the design is the beatitudes to the colored page in the nonfiction book.  These are the four evangelists.  If I didn't know that, how would I know what I was looking at.  Even so, I still can never remember who is who.

The second revelation that I am surprised at is that when I am coloring, I find myself praying.  I caught myself praying the Jesus prayer.  After the initial sur…

Disc Golf

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Hubby is teaching me to play disc golf.  Here's a photo essay on the lesson.  Pictures from Dacey Field Disc Golf Course.


Hubby has a lot of patience.  But if I can't see the basket how can I throw the frisbee disc?  "Throw it!  Throw it!"  He yells.

Help Given, Help Sought

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Announcing a great way to help out returning residents from prison. A Stitch in Time Textiles Dear Friends of Bethany House, We are so excited to share with you our new joint venture with our good friend Guido Jacques, Vice President of Operations at A &M Tool and Design Company in Southbridge, MA. For the past year we have been working with Guido who has begun a program to give employment to folks being released from prison. He has given our brothers a job opportunity with a future....it has been a positive experience for all. And now Bethany House Ministries is entering into a joint venture with Guido in a business that is more geared to women. Two members of our Bethany family, Joli and Lisa have begun "A Stitch in Time Textiles" company on the 4th floor of the mill of Guido's business in Southbridge, MA. Our mission is to build a profitable business that serves both its customers and its employees. "A Stitch in Time Textiles" was formed to provide empl…

Friends from the Magic Mountain

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Friends from the Magic Mountain  is an interesting story about a Lay Dominican.  Marie Knudtzon certainly under the influence of the Holy Spirit converted to Catholicism, became a Lay Dominican and helped found a monastery.  


Her story will make you feel helpless, if not a downright failure.

Patron Saint of Confessors

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St. John Nepomucene (1340-93), was the vicar general to the Archbishop of Prague.  King Wenceslaus IV, was a vicious, young man who easily succumbed to rage and caprice, was highly suspicious of his wife, the Queen.  St. John happened to be the Queen’s confessor.  Although the king himself was unfaithful, he became increasingly jealous and suspicious of his wife, who was irreproachable in her conduct.  Although Wenceslaus tortured St. John to force him to reveal the Queen’s confessions, he would not.  In the end, St. John was thrown into the River Moldau and drowned on March 20, 1393.  He would not break the Seal of Confession.

Hear O Dubia

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This morning's Gospel for the Memorial of Sts. Timothy and Titus, was Mark 4: 21-25.  Jesus is speaking in parables because people like stories and they can relate even though they may not understand.

I will add another reason.  People remember them.  People aren't sure they understand so they discuss them.  And today's Lectio Divina is an attempt to unwrap Mark v. 21-25.

There is one line that makes the people in the pew eyebrows go up: Mark 4: 25, To the one who has, more will be given; from the one who has not, even what he has will be taken away.

Harsh?

Think deeper.

Lectio: Mark 4: 25

To the one who has, more will be given; from the one who has not, even what he has will be taken away.

Studium:

This saying is an adaption of a popular proverb.  Jesus is speaking to his apostles and those disciples who are learning from him.   Remember the apostles asking Jesus in Matthew 13:10 why He spoke in parables?  His answer is in the next v. 11: Because knowledge of the mysteries o…

The Wisdom of Kings

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At Donald Trump's inauguration, Cardinal Timothy Dolan, the Archbishop of New York read from the book of Wisdom.  I didn't pay much attention to the prayer, then, at the inauguration; I thought it a lazy prayer; he's just quoting scripture.  But this morning as I read Christianity Today's article on Trump's Inaugural Bible Reading Is Not Your Bible, I've been meditating on Dolan's prayer.

I've spent most of the time trying to find the verse.  CT said it was 1 Kings 3.  No way.  Then upon googling I read it was chapter 9.  That was an even more remote parallel.  Finally, it occurred to me to search for Dolan's prayer and came to the USCCB website.  It's Wisdom Chapter 9.

This is a famous prayer.  It's known as Solomon's prayer.  I was confused by the Protestant reference to 1 Kings.  I was wrong.  It is a very appropriate prayer to pray for our president.

Faithful Discipleship

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Lectio:  Zephaniah 2:3; 3:12-13

Seek the Lord, all you humble of the earth, who have observed his law; seek justice, seek humility; perhaps yu may be sheltered on the day of the Lord's anger.

But I will leave as a remnant in your midst a people humble and lowly, who shall take refuge in the name of the Lord: the remnant of Israel. They shall do no wrong and speak no lies; nor shall there be found in their mouth a deceitful tongue; they shall pasture and couch their flocks with none to disturb them.

Studium:

Zephaniah was a prophet during the reign of King Josiah of Judah (640-609) B.C.  Josiah was a good servant to God.  He tried to change his people's idolatry habits.  Zephaniah reproaches the people but also gives them promise.

This particular reading is taken from two different chapters; one is about the faithful in Judah, while the other is admonishment upon the idolators.  God will judge them.

Meditatio:

The reading begins in exhortation.  There are those who are not actin…

God's forgiveness is call to sin no more, pope says

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God's forgiveness is call to sin no more, pope says: VATICAN CITY (CNS) -- God forgives sinners unless they keep reminding him of their errors by pretending they have no need to change, Pope Francis said.  Of course, the Holy Father is correct, but  how to do what we know we should?

Pope Francis makes a strong call for better marriage prep

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Pope Francis makes a strong call for better marriage prep: Vatican City, Jan 21, 2017 CNA/EWTN News.- In his annual speech to the Holy See's main court on Saturday, Pope Francis stressed the pressing need for effective education and preparation for the sacrament of matrimony.

    For sure!  I've heard of couples leading marriage prep that are in their early twenties and have been married a couple of years.  Their class is all older than they and many have been cohabitating for years and even have children together.  Isn't that a joke?  Would you want to be taught by a younger couple who have only been together a few years?

Criminal Justice Reform Event

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Greater Boston Interfaith Organization Save the Date-GBIO ACTION February 2, 2017 Arrive 6:30pm, Sharp start 7-9pm Bethel AME Church 40 Walk Hill St Jamaica Plain/Forest Hills T Join us as we come together to address, with key elected officials and stakeholders, the critical issues facing us around:Criminal Justice--Passage of true Criminal Justice Reform: oEnding Mandatory Minimums for drug offences oPre-trial and Bail Reform oEnding Long Term Solitary Confinement oEliminate excessive probation and parole fees and fines ●Affordable Housing--The post election implementation of the Boston Community Preservation Act (CPA) ●Healthcare--The post election effect on our Massachusetts Universal Healthcare System (MassHealth) ●Gun Safety--Update on the “Do Not Stand Idly By” Campaign The purpose is to continue building power relationships to keep GBIO’s recent work and platforms in the forefront and moving towards winning on our issues. RSVP today with your GBIO liaison/leader to reserve a seat! Follow G…

Would somebody please turn on the lights!

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Would somebody please turn on the lights!: Is our human compassion being hoodwinked by the promoters of assisted suicide? Last October a Boston newspaper highlighted the issue with a front page story of Dr. Roger Kligler. Dr. Kligler had brought suit against the Commonwealth of Massachusetts because the state makes it illegal to end his life.



Assisted suicide is not the subject of my post.  That's a separate issue altogether.  What pisses me off is the Globe's manipulation.  The author states that in October's Globe, an article got front page coverage.  The article was about a man who wanted to end his life.  The author sent a letter in response.  It was never published.  OK, but recently a letter supporting the man's suicide was published.  AGAIN the author wrote a letter offering the opposite view.  AGAIN it was ignored.



Do you think the Globe has an agenda?



Do you think the Globe spins the news?



Do you think?

Abandoned Again

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The caller ID on my phone read, “Jill Byron.”  I had just been to a meeting with Jill, a couple of hours ago.  I quickly picked up the phone.  “Hello.”
Shocked!  I heard crying.  “You left me alone!  I was alone.  It was dark.  I was scared—all alone!”
I-I-I didn’t know what to respond.  I thought back. Jill was traveling from Medfield to Holliston’s Community Center.  She didn’t know the way.  We made arrangements to meet at a shopping plaza on Rte. 109, in Medway.  The actual directions were simple.  I’m sure she could have found the Holliston Community Center on Rte. 126, herself.  All you do is take Rte. 109 until it intersects with Rte. 126.  Then you take Rte. 126 towards Holliston, until you come to your destination. 
And we did meet at the plaza and she followed me to the meeting, which wasn’t long.   It just ended a little while ago.
But here is Jill sobbing.
 “I’m sorry.  I thought you were following me.  Everyone left the meeting at the same time.  I thought you were behind me.…

Abandoned

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The caller ID on my phone read, “Jill Byron.”  I had just been to a meeting with Jill, a couple of hours ago.  I quickly picked up the phone.  “Hello.”
Shocked!  I heard crying.  “You left me alone!  I was alone.  It was dark.  I was scared—all alone!”
I-I-I didn’t know what to respond.  I thought back. 
Jill was traveling from Medfield to Holliston’s Community Center.  She didn’t know the way.  We made arrangements to meet at a shopping plaza on Rte. 109, in Medway.  The actual directions were simple.  I’m sure she could have found the Holliston Community Center on Rte. 126, herself.  All you do is take Rte. 109 until it intersects with Rte. 126.  Then you take Rte. 126 towards Holliston, until you come to your destination.
But here is Jill sobbing.
 “I’m sorry.  I thought you were following me.  Everyone left at the same time.  I thought you were behind me.”  I did remember thinking that I hoped she was in one of the cars behind me.  I was first, and everyone else poured out of the par…

Batten Down the Hatches

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The Ship of Brides by Jojo Moyes is fantastic.  I keep calling it Ship of Fools, by mistake.  Freudian slip?  No, because Ship of Fools is a book by Katherine Ann Porter and also an award winning movie.  So it's just unthinking slip of the tongue.

However, the plot is the same but different.  Both take place entirely on board ships.  But that's it.  The passengers drive the story line and there's the difference.

You know how I'm usually reading several books at a time.  Once I got into The Ship of Brides, everything else was put on hold.  That's all I wanted to do was to read the book.

The time is after WWII, 1946.  The ship is the aircraft carried, Victoria.  The passengers are Australian brides going to England.  One cabin has four passengers that will pull you into their lives.  You'll be the fifth passenger.

"
Batten down the hatches", you're in for the duration of the voyage.

LWOP

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Pope Francis has branded life-long prison terms "a hidden death sentence" in an attack on "penal populism" that included severe criticism of countries that facilitate torture.  He said that believers should oppose life-long incarceration as strongly as the use of capital punishment. Below please find a Petition to the General Court of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts to replace all current laws imposing lifelong prison sentences offering no possibility of parole with legislation providing for parole reviews at 25 years. We hope that you will sign this petition and send it to the Criminal Justice Policy Coalition at the address provided.  So many of us know men and women who are doing 1st degree life sentences, many of who were sentenced at a young age who would be an asset to society.  They would pose no threat to public safety and would significantly save the Commonwealth money . Thank you all for your love and support to our sisters and brothers both in and out…

Anacleto Gonzalez Flores

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I was reading about Anacleto Gonzalez Flores in Aleteia, this morning and was poignantly moved.  Here is a saint after my own heart.

He didn't grow up in a particularly devout household--his father barely tolerated the mother's religiosity.  


He was studious and religious.

He was a lawyer and went to daily Mass.

He was married and had two children.

He visited prisoners and taught religion.

He was a writer and published a magazine.

At that time, the Mexican government became very anti-religion.  The government purposely aimed to rid the country of Catholicism.  Anacleto Gonzalez Flores worked to defeat the government's policies.  Eventually, he was martyred for his activities.

May he rest in peace and may we all be as steadfast in faith as he.  Lord Jesus in Your Name I pray.

Thinking Our Loud

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So to speak...the word "suss" is new to me.  I googled it and learned that it means to figure out. Using my frame of reference then does "suss" mean the same as "discern."  Do you suss out a vocation?

Looking further I found out that the word "suss" comes from "suspect."  Oh!  There you go.  Suss does not mean the same as discern.  But I can suss that you are thinking of a religious vocation.

Called by Name

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S. Zdislavae de Moravia (O.P.) More details Called by name Lectio John was standing with two of his disciples, and as he watched Jesus walk by, he said, "Behold, the Lamb of God." The two disciples heard what he said and followed Jesus. Jesus turned and saw them following him and said to them, "What are you looking for?" They said to him, "Rabbi" (which translated means Teacher), "where are you staying?" He said to them, "Come, and you will see." So they went and saw where he was staying, and they stayed with him that day. It was about four in the afternoon. Andrew, the brother of Simon Peter, was one of the two who heard John and followed Jesus. He first found his own brother Simon and told him, "We have found the Messiah," which is translated Christ. Then he brought him to Jesus. Jesus looked at him and said, "You are Simon the son of John; you will be called Cephas," which is translated Peter.(JN 1:35-42) HideStudi…

Additions to the Experiment

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A couple of days ago, I blogged "The Experiment" where I posted an activity aimed at putting God in the forefront of your mind.  Additionally, I was hoping that you would see a difference in how people treated you.  Your behavior made them better persons.  Following, you became a better person.  It was an experiment.

I can tell you that humming "He ain't heavy, he's my brother," brought smiles to everyone.  I hope it also brought some to reflexion.

Here are some additions to the experiment.

15.  Improve today--read, learn, exercise, etc.

16.  Be cheerful all day.

17.  Praise someone's success.

18.  Telephone someone you haven't heard from in awhile.

19.  Pay it forward.  Coffee would be nice.

20.  Treat yourself.

At the end of each of these don't forget to take an assessment.  The assessment will be how others reacted and then assess how you feel.  Do this each day for 20 days.  What do you think?

Love is Evident

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Since I'm the lector for the Second Sunday in Ordinary Time, I will be proclaiming the Responsorial Psalm.  To understand it the best that I am able, I am doing a Lectio Divina on it. This is the selection:

Lectio: Psalm 40: 2, 4, 7-8, 8-9, 10.

R.     Here am I, Lord; I come to do your will.       


I have waited, waited for the Lord,
and he stooped toward me and heard my cry.
And he put a new song into my mouth,
a hymn to our God.

Sacrifice or offering you wished not
but ears open to obedience you gave me.
Holocausts or sin-offerings you sought not;
then said I, "Behold I come."

"In the written scroll it is prescribed for me,
to do your will, O my God, is my delight,
and your law is within my heart!"

I announced your justice in the vast assembly;
I did not restrain my lips, as you,
O Lord, know.

Studium:

These verses are only selections from Psalm 40.  The psalm in its entirety sings of the experiences of being exiled.  Temple sacrifices are helpful but the worsh…

The Experiment

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1  1.   Look for something good in everybody you meet. 2  2.   Try to make everyone you meet feel better about themselves.
3  3.   Pray for everyone you meet. 4  4.   Hum a hymn all day. 5  5.   Every time you  enter a room, pray “Thank you, Jesus.” 6  6.   Read something religious today. 7  7.  Carry a cross in your pocket. 8  8.   Do something nice for someone without them knowing it. 9  9.   Fast from TV today. 1  10. Sit and meditate for awhile, today.     11. Help someone. 1  12. Smile all day. 1  13. Pray for the dead. 1  14. Go for a walk and look for God in nature.

At the end of each of these 14 days take an assessment.  The assessment will be how other reacted and then assess how you feel.  Do this each day for two weeks.  What do you think?