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Thursday, June 30, 2016

Human Folly

The morning found me reading John James Audubon's The Passenger Pigeon.  My appetite was whet.  Audubon had no idea that the great numbers of Passenger Pigeons he was writing and drawing about, would some day become extinct.  Audubon was writing in 1813.

 One 1855 account from Columbus, Ohio, described a “growing cloud” that blotted out the sun as it advanced toward the city. “Children screamed and ran for home,” it said. “Women gathered their long skirts and hurried for the shelter of stores. Horses bolted. A few people mumbled frightened words about the approach of the millennium, and several dropped on their knees and prayed.” When the flock had passed over, two hours later, “the town looked ghostly in the now-bright sunlight that illuminated a world plated with pigeon ejecta.”

 It seems that their survival depended upon their flocking behaviors.  They had to stick together.  However, their demise is still debated as to whether they died from some sort of avian disease or were over hunted.  Usually, it's "both and and."

What a phenomena!

Sunday, June 26, 2016

Lectio Divina for the Thirteenth Sunday in Ordinary Time Year C

The Gospel reading for today is from Luke 9: 51-62.  But this Lectio Divina is Luke: 9: 51-56.


When the days for Jesus' being taken up were fulfilled, He resolutely determined to journey to Jerusalem and He sent messengers ahead of Him. On the way they entered a Samaritan village to prepare for His reception there, but they would not welcome Him because the destination of His journey was Jerusalem.  When the disciples James and John saw this they asked, "Lord, do You want us to call down fire from heaven to consume them?"  Jesus turned and rebuked them, and they journey to another village.


Hostilities and disagreements about proper worship dot the centuries-long history of relationships between the Judeans and Samaritans.  In the first century, B.C.  Pompey rebuilt Samaria and Herod built a city there that included a temple to Caesar Augustus.  This did not endear the Samaritans to the Jews.  Later events make matters worse, i.e., Samaritan vandalism of the Jerusalem temple in A.D. 6 and 9, murder of a Judean pilgrim en route to Jerusalem in 51 A.D. and the subsequent retaliation of a massacre of Samaritans.


Does not this vile animosity remind you of the world, today?  Liberals against conservatives, Muslims terrorists against Western values,  citizens against immigrants, Constitutionalists against reformers, pro-lifers against abortionists, etc..  When Jesus turns and rebukes His disciples for wanting to call down fire from heaven upon the inhospitable Samaritans (Luke 9:56)  He is rejecting the old "eye for eye, tooth for tooth" laws proscribed in Leviticus.  Jesus, later on will have the good Samaritan save the day for the wounded man, whom the priest and Levite ignore (Luke 10:25-37).  Jesus is witnessing to respect neighbors and reconcile our differences.  There is more than one way to live and worship God and we are to respect all of them.


Lord, may we have the graces of wisdom and understanding, for those who are different from us.  May we help towards reconciliation between all who love You.  Help us not to allow cultural and historical differences to divide us.  May we all serve You.  May we all love You.  I ask this in the name of Jesus Who taught us this.


Lord, Jesus Christ, help me be Your instrument today.

Saturday, June 25, 2016

My life can get back to normal, now.  I finished reading, The Free Frenchman by Piers Paul Read.  I normally read about 8-10 books, at a time.  Some I have to, i.e., I was given them to review, some I am required to read for Lay Dominican Study Group.  I also belong to two reading groups, so there's two books I also have to read.  But there's always one or two that are recommended by friends and I am seduced.

The Free Frenchman fell into my lap, while I was sorting books for my town's library book sale.  Once a month the library has a book sale.  I volunteer to help sort the books into some sort of order.  (Not that I have any selfish motive for volunteering.  Perish the thought.)

I read Alive by Piers Paul Read and was riveted by the author's narration.  I also read Monk Dawson by the same author.  So the novel interested me because I knew it would be a good read.

However, I was almost turned off by Read's simplistic depiction of Dominican history.  Being a Lay Dominican I was offended by Piers Paul Read's specious history of the role the Order of Preachers' played during the Middle Ages.  (Secret police of the Catholic Church--I admire the author's imagination!)  I know there were bad Dominicans and very bad Dominicans, but they don't define my family.  It was just that Read only told his readers the bad stuff.  He should have had Dominique enter the Dominicans, as a penance, to make up for his one-sided depiction.

Oddly, I didn't mind that Antoine Dubec was a Dominican friar.  I kind of liked the man.  He certainly was committed to his interpretation of Christian social justice and was willing to risk his life for it--and more.  He broke the Seal of Confession.  He's in hell.

Anyway, as I was saying, I was reading a chapter or so from each of my tower of books, until The Free Frenchman hooked me.  I had no idea of the machinations behind the German occupation of France.  It was riveting.  From page 100-584, I only had eyes for The Free Frenchman.  My tower of books collected dust.  I stayed up too late reading.  I ignored my blog.  I was too involved with Bertrand de Roujay.  I admired him.  I was shocked by his immoral behavior.  I was nervous he'd get caught.  I was saddened when Madeleine was unfaithful, and Jenny, too.  How could he ever trust another woman?  And then he himself...  And he used Lucia--how could he! And how many times can a man die?

So the hero is human;that's true.  The story rings true.  The history is convoluted but true.  The de Roujay family itself branches out in three different directions to fight for France. More than that if you count ex-wives and lovers.  What a story!

Who wins?  "In a war it is always the devil who wins." Spoken by Edmond de Roujay to his sobbing grandson Thierry.  Those who are traitors become heroes, and vice versa.  History is written by the winners.

But miracles do abound, thanks to a praying grandmother--Alice de Roujay.  She holds the family together with her prayers.  Her little part of the world is a sanctuary.  I always felt relieved when all the characters were at Saint Theodore, with her.  "The world outside...was the principality of satan, and it was impossible to live in it without giving the devil his due." Actually, these expressed thoughts are Bertrand de Roujay's about his sister's convent, but I thought they fitted Saint Theodore.

France was a nightmare in WWII. The author proved by his story that morality is relative.  Everyone claims they are on the side of God.  Foolishness!  How wretched the illusions of those who imagined that it could ever be right to kill for Christ.  How mistaken the example of the crusaders; for evil could only be answered with evil, the bombardment of London with the obliteration of Berlin.  God took no sides in wars, because as Christ himself had said, his kingdom was not of this world, and no legions of angels were ever summoned to battle for His cause.  p. 565  Bertrand de Roujay's thoughts in prison.

I loved the book.  I learned a lot of French history.  I learned how weak human nature is.  I learned how noble humans can be.  Although I found myself depressed, when I finished the novel.  But I'll attribute that for wanting more.  Piers Paul Read gives us much to chew on.

Thursday, June 23, 2016

St. Toribio Romo

Toribio Romo was born in Jalisco, Mexico in 1900.  He always wanted to be a priest and was ordained when he was 22.  But this was a time when religion was not only frowned upon, in Mexico, there were laws severely restricting Catholicism.  The President, Plutarco Elias Calles was very hostile towards Catholicism.  His anti-Catholicism fueled the Cristeros.

In order to minister to his people, Father Romo had to go underground.  He celebrated Mass in factories and residences.  I imagined he prayed for a lot of strength, but his fears didn't stop him.

On February 25, the government soldiers woke him up at 4:00 AM and shot him. The story of his martyrdom spread.  He became the patron saint of those who watch over migrants and refugeesand border crosses
.  In 2000, Pope John Paul II canonized Father Toribio Romo, along with 24 other martyrs murdered for their faith during the Cristero War.

Wednesday, June 22, 2016

Book Selections

St. Mary's Book Club met last night and decided
which books to read for the coming year. 

June – Sept.       Wolf Hall                              by Hilary Mantel

October               The Nightingale                by Kristin Hannah

November          Life in the Jar:The             by Jack Mayer
                Irena Sendler Project

December           The 100 Year Old               by Jonas Jonasson
                                Man Who Climbed Out the Window and Disappeared
January                                The Glass Castle                by Jeannette Walls

February              The Caning:The                 by Stephen Puleo
                                Assault that Drove American to Civil War

March                   The Soul of an Octopus:                by Sy Montgomery
                A Surprising Exploration into the Wonder of Consciousness

April                      The Mayflower                 by Nathaniel Philbrick

May                       The Circle                             by Dave Eggers

June – Sept.       What Alice Forgot            by Liane Moriarity

Monday, June 20, 2016

Count Your Blessings

Another story one of my confreres related yesterday in chapter had to do with the way we look at the world.  Remember, we're discussing prayer.  Gary was thinking positive.  Too many people focus on what they don't have or what's missing, rather than looking at what they do have and should be thankful for.  His story:

A grandmother (why a grandmother I don't know) and her grandson were walking the beach.  The boy stopped to play in the waves and the grandmother sat down to watch and enjoy.  Suddenly, a rogue wave came and snatch the boy up and pulled him far out in the ocean.  The grandmother freaked!  She screamed to heaven, begging God to bring her grandson back.  Then just as suddenly as the grandson was snatched away, a wave brought him in and deposited him back on shore.
    Instead of thanking God, she said, "He was wearing a hat."

Sunday, June 19, 2016


We were talking about Faith in Chapter, this morning.  We actually were discussing prayer.  What makes prayer fruitful is Faith.  Not necessarily that we pray for a miracle and have faith that a miracle will happen, but that it could, if it were God's will.  Faith knows that prayers are heard, acknowledged, and we get what we ask for if it is good for us.  We trust that God, Who is omniscient, will allow what is good for us.  Anyway, you get the idea--how and what we were saying.  Nghia told us a story that hit the nail on the head.

There was a drought in the land. The people prayed for rain.  The village leaders decided to get together and all pray together, to pray for rain.  They decided on a date to do this.  The date came and everyone came out to pray together.  There they all were.  Only one of them had an umbrella.  He had Faith.

Friday, June 17, 2016

Winter Moths

You wouldn't believe the devastation. Yesterday, the trail hikers hiked the French Trail in Borderlands.  It was hot and sticky because even though we were in the woods, there were no leaves on the trees.  Why?

Our leaves are being attacked by the Winter Moths.   "In the spring, our communities have witnessed an astonishing number of small, green caterpillars defoliating maples, oaks and other deciduous trees. The major caterpillar pest thought to be responsible for this foliar destruction was initially thought to be the fall cankerworm. However, in 2003, by collaborative work done by Deborah Swanson of Plymouth County Extension (retired), the late Robert Childs of UMass Extension, Dr. Joseph Elkinton of UMass, and Dr. David Wagner of UConn it was discovered that the damage was done by a newly introduced insect called the winter moth (Operophtera brumata), a member of the Geometridae family.
Initially, the hardest hit areas were in Eastern Massachusetts, especially southeastern MA, including Cape Cod. The winter moth's known range in Massachusetts and beyond is now much better understood due to the extensive pheromone trapping that has been orchestrated by Dr. Joseph Elkinton at the University of Massachusetts. Winter moth is at its heaviest numbers east of Route 495, on the North and South Shores, including Martha's Vineyard and most of Cape Cod, as well as in towns in and around Boston. However, it is also found as far west as Worcester. Winter moth is now established throughout Rhode Island and has been picked up in traps, in southeastern NH, coastal Maine, southeastern CT and out on Long Island, New York. Massachusetts still appears to have the largest and most damaging populations of this pest." Source:  
Disgusting! They were in our hats, hanging from the brims!  Oddly, we reached an open field where there weren't trees, just high grass. Across, the tree leaves were fine.  The moths were there.  Yet!  We plowed through the grass.  Then we checked each other for ticks.  The ticks seem to attach themselves from the hips up, not our ankles.  Lastly, we found some picnic tables to lunch on.  But first, we had to brush off what looked like pepper (Winter Moth turds).  Ugh!
This was our last hike for the season.

Thursday, June 16, 2016

Who Am I?

I am the only saint directly canonized by Jesus, Himself.  I was assured of a place in Heaven by Him.  I confessed to Him in an open confessional.  My face was closest to Jesus in His last hours of death than anybody else.  I offered Him words of comfort while He died in agony.  Who am I?

Answer: Dismas

Tuesday, June 14, 2016

Our First House

The ‘70’s had just turned the corner and so had our lives.  We were engaged to be married and the world was engaging our generation.  Every weekend found us at the beach.  Sometimes we drove along Route 1A in Salisbury and followed the coast to Maine.  Other times we crossed the bridge and traveled Route 6A to P-town.  The best times were with friends.  A group of our friends had rented a cottage in East Falmouth.  They called it Sha-na-na, after a popular 50’s style musical group.

We thought the place was Shangri-La.  We would walk to the Association Beach, and swim across a narrow channel to Washburn Island.  Washburn Island is uninhabited and perfect for twenty-somethings to just enjoy being young.

Or, we would walk in the other direction to Eel River and get in a rubber raft, a sunfish, or a canoe and paddle around enjoying the sun-kissed gentle waves.  We could also walk to the end of Seacoast Boulevard and watch the sun set.

Wouldn’t it be heaven if we lived here forever?

That thought did enter our minds.  We were getting married and saving to buy a house.  The rental house our friends had for the summer had an interesting plan.  It was only four rooms, yet slept six.  The two bedrooms were narrow with built-in bunks.  The bunks were fun.  Even more fun, was the spiral staircase that led to the basement.  The basement was open space and a place where card games, parties, and loud music could be held without disturbing neighbors.

The house was new and the builder would often drop by to see if we needed anything.  One time my fiancé asked him how much a house like this would cost for him to build. (Keep in mind, the year is 1970).  I forget the exact amount but it was in the $ 20,000+ range, “or,” he said, “I’ll sell you this one for $18,000.”

To this day, hubby can’t resist a sale.

Why would we want to live here?
We’re trying to decide between king or queen size beds, not—built-in-the-walls-bunk-beds!
We’ll rent it out.
The roof is flat.  It looks like the Alamo.
It’s a good deal. 
But…but shouldn’t we be buying a real house BEFORE rental property.

Since I was new to the art of arguing persuasively, I was sweet talked into agreeing. Within months we were married, and a few months following, we signed papers to own the rental.  We 
didn’t even have the money for a down payment.  Since my charge cards were still in my maiden name, I borrowed the maximum I could, $ 1500 from Visa, $ 1500 from Mastercard.   Hubby did likewise.  Our $ 6000 down payment was totally borrowed.  You can’t do this nowadays.

Forty-five years have passed.  We still own this property.  At first, we rented to the same friends who introduced us to the place.  We rented the bunks, not the place itself. ( For $ 250 you room  with us for the summer.)  It worked well, until we had children.  Then the place itself was rented until the mortgage was paid for.  Now it’s all ours for all time.  Our children love it and our grandchildren love the built-in-bunks.

Sunday, June 12, 2016

Nurse Log

Hubby and I were taking a little hike on the nature trail behind Dacey Field.  We came across a nurse log.  A nurse log is a decayed tree that begins to decompose and provides moisture and nutrients for insects, plants, and even other trees.

It is easy to tell if a new tree has grown out of a nurse tree.  The nurse tree has decomposed and leaves a large gap extending from the new tree roots to where the nurse log originally was before decomposing.

Now there's plants, trees, and homes for animals, insects, and fungi.  New life is created.

Friday, June 10, 2016


One of my "cloistered brothers" taught me a method of meditation that really works--for me, anyway. Oddly, this is the same "cloistered brother" who showed me how to do SUDOKU.  He has the knack to reach me.

What I used to do, that never worked, was try to rid myself of distractions.  My meditation time was spent at war, fighting off distractions, or using distractions in inventive situations.  Now, I'm trying to place myself in the most distracting place I can think of.  The noise will be background noise or white noise.  It's just there.

The most distracting place I can think of is the city.  So I'm in Boston.  I need to sit, so I sit on a bench.  There're benches in the Common, but that's not THE most distracting.  There's the Garden, but that's not distracting.  There's Washington Street, Commonwealth Ave. and Beacon Street, where's there are benches along the Fens, but the traffic is too slow.  I'm picking Storrow Drive.  I sit on a bench looking at the traffic go by, not the Charles River.

Swish, sw-sw-sw-ish,  sw-sw-sw-ish,  sw-sw-sw-ish,  sw-sw-sw-ish, sw-sw-sw-ish,  sw-sw-sw-ish,  sw-sw-sw-ish.  All the horns and noise are in the background.  People walking pets, runners, nannies with carriages, etc. are in my periphery.   Sw-sw-sw-ish,  sw-sw-sw-ish,  sw-sw-sw-ish,  sw-sw-sw-ish. I think I'll look at the people inside the cars:  sw-sw-sw-ish,  sw-sw-sw-ish,  sw-sw-sw-ish,  sw-sw-sw-ish. I try to count them but can't.  They're too fast and too many.   Sw-sw-sw-ish,  sw-sw-sw-ish,  sw-sw-sw-ish,  sw-sw-sw-ish,  sw-sw-sw-ish,  sw-sw-sw-ish,  sw-sw-sw-ish,  sw-sw-sw-ish,  sw-sw-sw-ish.  I'm counting just red cars.  Sw-sw-sw-ish,  sw-sw-sw-ish,  sw-sw-sw-ish,  sw-sw-sw-ish, etc.  I pick out one approaching red car and focus on that one car, only.  I follow it approach, come closer, pass me, and travel on, and on, and on, and...until it's out of my sight.  I do it again.  And again.

My focus pulls me with the red car towards God.  All the other cars pass us.  Everything is white noise.  All the cars and everything pass by.

All is passing.  God alone abiding.   Sw-sw-sw-ish,  sw-sw-sw-ish,  sw-sw-sw-ish,   sw-sw-sw-ish.  All is passing.  All.  God alone abiding.  All is passing.   Sw-sw-sw-ish,  sw-sw-sw-ish.  Passing--all--all is passing.  God alone abiding....

Thursday, June 9, 2016

Bang - Bang!

A Loaded Gun by Jerome Charyn is well worth your time reading.  Not only is it enjoyable, but you will learn some history of an era, besides gain a little understanding of  what makes a poet tick.  The poet is the poetess, Emily Dickinson.  Charyn views Emily as a complicated character.  She was agoraphobic, but her poems take her out of her self-imposed cloister to meet all kinds of people.  She was a spinster, but her poems can be erotic.  Her eroticism includes fantasies between both sexes.  Perhaps Emily was bi-sexual.  But despite this radical ambiguity, Charyn’s depiction of Emily Dickinson as “A Loaded Gun,” showcases an expert mistress of creative writing.  Her poetry, writing and life are liquid language personified into A Loaded Gun
Charyn is a detective writing up his surveillance of Emily.  He has to be meticulous because if he can’t prove she’s guilty, the evidence will be thrown out.  Hence the microscopic analysis of her life.  First, Charyn considers what others have concluded: William Luce’s play—the Belle of Amherst, Adrienne Rich’s Vesuvius at Home, Thomas Wentworth Higginson’s The Magnicent Activist, Jay Leyda’s The Years and Hours of Emily Dickinson, Christopher Benfey’s works, Rebecca Patterson’s The Riddle of Emily Dickinson,Joseph Cornell’s art, etc.. There’s too many to name.  Read the Bibliography. 
Next, Charyn follows Emily around.  She hides in her home, running when the door knocker raps.  Charyn teases her out.  She does have relatives and some of these are friends.  There’s Carlo her dog and sometimes muse.  But each of these tells conflicting experiences.  Which relationship reveals the true Emily?  Charyn finds that the deeper he digs, the more elusive she becomes. 
Finally, Charyn has to conclude that Emily Dickinson is a loose cannon.  She is guilty of impersonating a simple woman of letters.  She’s guilty of impropriety.  She is guilty of hubris.  She is just not who we think she should be. 
In the end, the reader has to agree with the excellent research and scholarship of Jerome Charyn.  He gives enough evidence to prove that Emily Dickinson was a loaded gun.  But Charyn’s biography also has evidence that Emily was an innocent product of her environment.  Everyone wanted her to be their version of Emily.  And she tried to placate everyone.  Nonetheless, the conclusion is still that she was a loaded gun.
Jerome Charyn was born and raised on the mean streets of the Bronx. He graduated cum laude from Columbia College. He has taught at Princeton, Columbia, Stanford, Rice, was Distinguished Visiting Professor at the City University of New York and is currently Distinguished Professor Emeritus at the American University of Paris. Charyn is a Guggenheim Fellow and has twice won fellowships from the National Endowment for the Arts. His stories and articles have appeared in The Atlantic, Paris Review, Esquire, American Scholar, New York Review of Books, New York Times, Ellery Queen and many other publications. Charyn's most recent books are The Secret Life of Emily Dickinson, I Am Abraham and Bitter Bronx: Thirteen Stories. His latest book is A Loaded Gun: Emily Dickinson for the 21st Century.

Video of Jerome Charyn HTML embed code:
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A Loaded Gun
 Book Summary:

We think we know Emily Dickinson: the Belle of Amherst, virginal, reclusive, and possibly mad. But in A Loaded Gun, Jerome Charyn introduces us to a different Emily Dickinson: the fierce, brilliant, and sexually charged poet who wrote:

My Life had stood—a Loaded Gun—

Though I than He— may longer live
He longer must—than I—
For I have but the power to kill,
Without—the power to die—

Through interviews with contemporary scholars, close readings of Dickinson’s correspondence and handwritten manuscripts, and a suggestive, newly discovered photograph that is purported to show Dickinson with her lover, Charyn’s literary sleuthing reveals the great poet in ways that have only been hinted at previously: as a woman who was deeply philosophical, intensely engaged with the world, attracted to members of both sexes, and able to write poetry that disturbs and delights us today.

A Loaded Gun Excerpt One:

A Loaded Gun Excerpt Two:

Prices/Formats: $11.99 ebook, $19.95 paperback
Literary Criticism
March 15, 2016

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Wednesday, June 8, 2016

Book Review of The Thing IS

The Thing Is by Kathleen Gerard
The Thing Is by Kathleen Gerard a very humorous novel.  Not only does it have humor, but it also has romance and mystery, plus a plot that holds the reader’s interest.  The story is told by two people.  One is a very intuitive dog with the name Prozac.  The name is apropos because he is a therapy dog.  That means his presence makes people feel better.  The other voice in the story is Meredith.  She ends up with Prozac.  By “ends up”, I mean that Prozac originally belonged to a lady who was hospitalized, so she asked a trusted friend to dog sit.  The trusted friend was Meredith’s sister, who is too busy and allergic to dogs.  It may seem to be a complicated introduction to the story, but this rigmarole is part of the humor.  Meredith is not in the mood to help out.  But somehow she’s sweet-talked into it. 
Prozac has responsibilities.  He ministers to a nursing home.  This place has a judge that keeps threatening Meredith, a bully receptionist, some sweet old ladies, a delinquent, and a love interest.  What could go wrong? 
The author, Kathleen Gerard, uses the characters for the humor.  The events of the story come from the characters -- their pettiness, their carelessness, their selfishness--their human frailties. 
The Thing Is, is an easy read.  It has everything: humor, mystery, romance, suspense and my kind of ending. Read it and find out yourself.
I did receive a free copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.  And my review convinced a lady in my cribbage group to order it.  I read it to the group and she wrote down the ordering information and said it sounded like the perfect summer read.  Thank you, Kathleen Gerard.
Kathleen Gerard writes across genres. Her work has been awarded many literary prizes and has been published in magazines, journals, widely anthologized and broadcast on National Public Radio (NPR). Kathleen writes and reviews books for Shelf Awareness. Kathleen's woman-in-jeopardy novel, IN TRANSIT, won "Best Romantic Fiction" at the New York Book Festival.

Prices/Formats: $5.99 ebook, $14.99 paperback
Romantic Comedy
February 9, 2016
Red Adept

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Tuesday, June 7, 2016

Blog Tour--Dying to be Beautiful

I am pleased to host a stop on a Tribute Books blog tour and a raffle give-away.  The tour features Dying to be Beautiful, which is a mystery series by M. Glenda Rosen.  

About Book One - Without a Head

“Dying To Be Beautiful,” is about the billion-dollar world of beauty. The mystery series takes place in The Hamptons, where the murdered and suspected murderers are often arrogant and obnoxious with a sense of entitlement. Private Investigator Jenna Preston and her long-time friend, Detective Troy Johnson, work together to solve these murders and other crimes.

However, the intriguing series is about much more than murders and mysteries. “Dying To Be Beautiful” explores the beauty—or lack of it—in humanity. It’s about insights into human behavior, people’s life choices and the impact of their choices on themselves and others.

The first book in the series, “Dying to be Beautiful: Without a Head,” begins with an ordinary occurrence transformed into a gruesome scene. “The head in the sink stared up at her. Darcy Monroe, the owner of a popular, chic hair salon was used to this. Only this time, the head was there without a body.”

About Book Two - Fashion Queen:

The second book in the “Dying to be Beautiful” mystery series, “Fashion Queen,” begins with another murder on Eastern Long Island:

Kevin Larson swam in his pool nearly every morning. Going on sixty-five, he prided himself on being in good shape.

Walking toward the small pool house, he noticed a light was on to the left of the pool. He was certain he turned it off the night before. Strange, he thought.

Even stranger, lying in a different sort of pool—blood—was his longtime friend and lover, fashion designer Andre Yellen.

The mystery series takes place in The Hamptons, where the murdered and suspected murderers are often arrogant and obnoxious with a sense of entitlement. Private Investigator Jenna Preston and her longtime friend, Detective Troy Johnson, work together to solve these murders and other crimes.

Throughout the “Dying To Be Beautiful” mystery series, solving crimes leads Jenna to philosophical perspectives; commitments to the environment, the homeless and Vets; as well as plenty of danger and romance (thanks to her dog, Watson). And... Watson now has a puppy sister, Aggie.

Apparently, in the billion-dollar world of beauty—especially on the East End of Long Island—there are those who are literally... dying to be beautiful!

About the Author:

M. Glenda Rosen is the author of The Woman’s Business Therapist: Eliminate the MindBlocks and RoadBlocks to Success, and award-winning My Memoir Workbook. For over fifteen years, she helped numerous authors develop and market their books, and presented writing programs in New York, The Hamptons, New Mexico and Carmel, California, on “Encouraging and Supporting the Writer Within You!” She's the founder and owner of a successful marketing and public relations agency for twenty-five years.

 And that's not all!!!  Thru out the month of June you may purchase Dying to be Beautiful for 99 CENTS! Besides the raffle!  What have you got to lose?


runs June 1-30, 2016 

Prices/Formats: $2.99 ebook, $14.99 paperback
Genre: Mystery
Pages: 140
Release: February 1, 2016
Publisher: Lulu
ISBN: 97814834453

M. Glenda Rosen's Web Site:
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Monday, June 6, 2016


30 Year Anniversary

This is an anniversary for a priest.  Father Al Faretra, the pastor of Saint Blaise in Bellingham celebrated thirty years being a priest.  His parishioners love him.  He is an excellent pastor because everyone can feel his love for them.  The picture on the left is Father Al at his own First Communion.  He still has the same smile.  

Thank you for answering God's call.

Sunday, June 5, 2016

Community is a Powerful Motivator

For some reason, I can't post this video.  It's from the facebook page, Collective Evolution, June 1st.

What I think is noteworthy about it is its message.  It's a group of firefighters arriving in Canada to help fight their apocalyptic fires.  They're from South Africa.  Although they haven't met before they are together now and need to unite to join a common cause.  They sing and move to a unity song.  You really need to see it.  You will see how this community technique builds moral courage.  It shows what collective teamwork can inspire.  They get together when they're tired and need a boost.  Let us pray that our communities learn what communities can do when we support each other.  Think Community of Saints.  Let us pray for these firefighters and the victims of these Canadian fires.

Saturday, June 4, 2016

Thru Samaria

Lectio LK 9:51-56

When the days for Jesus to be taken up were fulfilled,
he resolutely determined to journey to Jerusalem,
and he sent messengers ahead of him.
On the way they entered a Samaritan village
to prepare for his reception there,
but they would not welcome him
because the destination of his journey was Jerusalem.
When the disciples James and John saw this they asked,
“Lord, do you want us to call down fire from heaven
to consume them?”
Jesus turned and rebuked them,
and they journeyed to another village.


The time for Jesus’ mission to be fulfilled was approaching.  He started out to go towards Jerusalem.  To get  there, He had to travel through the land of Samaria, an adversary of the Jews.  V 53-4 They did not welcome Him, which is insulting because Middle Eastern peoples have an obligation to be hospitable towards strangers.  Not only that, they knew He was a prophet on His way to Jerusalem.  This means their refusal to accept a religious teacher was a rejection of His teachings.  This is why Jesus’ apostles were angered at such an insult of their rabbi.  V. 53-54 Lord, do you want us to call down fire from heaven to consume them?  But in V. 55 we see that Jesus did not think or feel as His apostles did.  Jesus is the Savior of all mankind, not a castigator.  The Samaritans did not know who they were rejecting.

 Saint Vincent de Paul relates.  Saint Vincent followed Christ in his treatment of all mankind equally.  He built hospitals and shelters for the poor and even convicts.  His love of the poor has grown into an international ministry and the Saint Vincent de Paul Society looks to him as their patron.  He, along with Louise de Marillac found the Daughters of Charity.  He also founded an order of priests, the Vincentians.  He is known as “Apostle of Charity.”


There are more and more people today who claim to have no religious affiliation, whatsoever.  Should we bother with them?  Would you ask God to rain down fire from heaven to consume them?  God doesn’t punish.  Remember that.  Jesus spread divine goodness everywhere He went.  Jesus talks to everyone, including Samaritans.  The conversation takes place in words and actions, from the stable to the tomb and beyond.  If you want to see divine goodness in the world today, look at Saint Vincent de Paul.  Saint Vincent’s works are still carried on today by those whom follow his spirituality.  They bring divine light, healing, and liberation where it is needed. Our work is to do likewise, the best that we can.  With God’s grace we will also spread divine goodness.


O God, who for the relief of the poor, and the formation of the clergy, endowed Saint Vincent de Paul with apostolic virtues, grant, we pray, that, afire with that same spirit,
we may love what he loved and put into practice what he taught.
Through our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son,
who lives and reigns with you in the unity of the Holy Spirit,
one God, for ever and ever.
  (Collect from the Memorial of Saint Vincent de Paul)


May we always strive to love and serve all of mankind.

Friday, June 3, 2016

The Antichrist

Do you think you are the antichrist?  Kathleen Norris and her pastor think we all are.  I see where they're coming from, and I agree.  John speaks of the antichrist:
Little children, it is the last time: and as ye have heard that antichrist shall come, even now are there many antichrists; whereby we know that it is the last time.
— 1 John 2:18 
Many deceivers have gone out into the world, those who do not confess that Jesus Christ has come in the flesh; any such person is the deceiver and the antichrist!
— 2 John 1:7 
Who is the liar but the one who denies that Jesus is the Christ? This is the antichrist, the one who denies the Father and the Son.
— 1 John 2:22 
By this you know the Spirit of God: every spirit that confesses that Jesus Christ has come in the flesh is from God, and every spirit that does not confess Jesus is not from God. And this is the spirit of the antichrist, of which you have heard that it is coming; and now it is already in the world.
— 1 John 4:2–3 
 In other words, every time we don't follow Jesus' teachings, we act as the antichrist.  Every time we fail Him, we are the antichrist.  It is I.

The Lord is Our Rescurer

  LECTIO: Ps 34:2-3, 4-5, 6-7 R. (9a)  Taste and see the goodness of the Lord. I will bless the LORD at all times; his praise shall be ever ...