Thursday, May 29, 2008
Monday, May 26, 2008
A roof to keep out the rain. Four walls to keep out the wind. Floors to keep out the cold. Yes, but home is more than that. It is the laugh of a baby, the song of a mother, the strength of a father. Warmth of loving hearts, light from happy eyes, kindness, loyalty, comradeship. Home is first school...for the young ones where they learn what is right, what is good, and what is kind. Where they go for comfort when they are hurt or sick. Where joy is shared and sorrow eased. Where fathers and mothers are respected and loved. Where children are wanted. Where the simplest food is good enough for kings because it is earned. Where money is not so important as loving-kindness. Where even the teakettle sings from happiness. That is home.~ Ernestine Schumann-Heink
snitched from One Woman's Cottage Life.
Sunday, May 25, 2008
A contemporary Christian band. My 14 year old son Andrew looks just like them. Maybe I should let him grow his sideburns? (naaahhh)
To listen to their latest go here.
To order the CD (like I just did) go here.
And if you still need convincing:
The early days: a song about impoverished newly married life:
Well I do have teenagers. 3 soon to be 4.
The goal of Lightswitch:
"Our desire to see people realize that God loves them and has a plan for them and to encourage them to live an uncompromised life for Him while living in a very compromised world. Our mission is to encourage this generation in their walk with God."
A good graduation party song:
Tuesday, May 20, 2008
...is the best time of the year to live here. The crab apple tree is in bloom and I have a perfect view of it from the kitchen window as well as the dining room. The rough patches in the front yard are the work of the dreaded grub. The drive, in front of the rock wall, is old and has not been used for years. I want to spread white gravel on it because I think it will have a magical effect. In front of the drive, near the road is where I am planting a meadow a la Christopher Lloyd.
I planted my first meadow flowers. They were at BJ's and are called Cheddar Pinks. (apparently they are also known as fire witch dianthus. Creepy) They have a scent of cloves which I could not tell when I planted them because of my cold.
It looks like a plant that will take over. So if I give up on my gardening there will be a meadow of cheddar pinks at least.
Sunday, May 18, 2008
Dr. Paul Byrne with Maryknoll father, Father Paul O'Brien, M.M
Dr. Paul Byrne, a Catholic neonatalogist and father of 12, gave a talk at St. Anthony's in Shirley, MA. Let me just say that I was blown away by what he had to say. He has studied the fraud of brain death and how it has been perpetrated to allow organs to be harvested from living people. It was really an incredible presentation and on more than one occasion there were audible gasps from the audience.
American Life League has published articles by Dr. Byrne on their website and in their magazine. There has been a media black out by other Catholic media sources, including Television if you know what I mean. Naturally, the person who "pulled the plug" on a one hour special featuring Dr. Byrne and Bishop Bruskewitz was a Catholic who runs his own "Catholic nonprofit". May God have mercy on them.
Anyway, I found this article that I think captures the essence of what Dr. Byrne is saying. It's a message we can't ignore.
Go here to read it.
Dr. Byrne's website Life Guardian.
Friday, May 09, 2008
I had never heard of this book and was only attracted to it by its title. There are some of us who still have to keep house you know. And maybe what began as duress ended in considerable contentment. Especially in view of the little things that make housekeeping feed our souls. Folding line-bleached cloth diapers, snipping peppermint leaves to make a cup of tea for a visitor, having strawberry lemon marmalade on hand and hearing the timer for the batch of fresh baked bread that you will serve first as an after-school snack and then as an accompaniment to dinner.
And to think that we housekeepers and mothers have been deigned to be worthy of $117,000 per year. And on the one hand we think, how base to distill our worth to mere dollars and on the other hand we think, but it IS six figures and that is nothing to be sneezed at.
But back to the book. I bought it for the title and the checked curtains on the cover and the review by Walker Percy. It is a book about tragedy. And about family. And about how families pull together and drift apart when subjected to tragedy.
And it's the kind of book that you read and realize the author, Marilyn Robinson, is in such control of her prose that she does not have to force it. After a few sentences I find I have to force it or I can't go on. She doesn't.
I've concluded recently that no book, or movie or play is of any worth if it does not have as its main theme - redemption. It is this that struck me about the movie, "Changing Lanes". It's the redemption of the human race that inspires and propels us to improve, persevere and strive. Redemption is the ultimate gift and the only gift that matters.
From the book:
Memory is the sense of loss, and loss pulls us after it. God Himself was pulled after us into the vortex we made when we fell, or so the story goes. And while He was on earth He mended families. He gave Lazarus back to his mother, and to the centurion he gave his daughter again. He even restored the severed ear of the soldier who came to arrest Him- a fact that allows us to hope the resurrection will reflect a considerable attention to detail. Yet this was no more than tinkering. Being man He felt the pull of death, and being God He must have wondered more than we do what it would be like. He is known to have walked upon water, but He was not born to drown. And when He did die it was sad- such a young man so full of promise, and His mother wept and His friends could not believe the loss and the story spread everywhere and the mourning could not be comforted, until He was so sharply lacked and so powerfully remembered that His friends felt Him beside them as they walked along the road, and saw someone cooking fish on the shore and knew it to be Him, and sat down to supper with Him, all wounded as He was.
It's a worthwhile book to read.
I'm on page 201 and there are only 219 pages left.
I am steeling myself to read the last few pages. Tragedy is heavy in the air. I cannot decide if it will be state-imposed tragedy or self-imposed tragedy. I'm not sure which would be worse. I suppose state-imposed tragedy leaves the soul free of culpability so that is to be preferred. But dreaded nonetheless in the very human sense.
A good book to read while you cherish your family. And be thankful that tragedy is not too heavy in the air.
Wednesday, May 07, 2008
As anyone who still reads this blog, and I can't believe there are people who do considering the way I have neglected it, you know that I am a big fan of the book "Faithful Departed" by Phil Lawler. and I've been helping out with the blog.
Amy Welborn, probably the most pre-eminent Catholic female blogger posted a review over at her site. The review is very positive though as it continues she is asking for the book to do more than one book can possibly do. Anything else will have to be go into the next book.
But anyway that is not my point. The first, hot off the presses comment is just seething with resentment and anger. No, not at the abuse scandal. No, not at the way the Bishops have mismanaged the thing. And no, not even at Fr. Feeney.
The anger is directed at the evil, the nefarious Phil Lawler. The writer states the following:
1 TOM RYAN
I have not read the book yet, but will do so asap.
Always to be remembered is that Phil was fired from his post at the archdiocese of Boston newspaper by Cardinal Law, and some of us felt that there was due cause….but the debris falling from that very acrimonious scene has sometimes been seen in Phil’s writing and commentary.
No, no, not the debris. Yes, it is very, very amusing. Especially so for anyone who has read the book and knows that Phil discusses the fact that he was fired. Thank you Tom Ryan for telling us NOTHING NEW.
It seems from his vitriolic little comment that Tom Ryan is a person, in the know and privvy to the inner workings of the Archdiocese of Boston. I wondered if "Tom Ryan" could possibly be "Fr. Tom Ryan" Googling Fr. Tom Ryan brought up so many interesting websites. Fr. Tom Ryan is a Paulist Priest dedicated to yoga and ecumenism. His website contains the requisite article slamming Traditional Catholics. It is entitled "Catholic Fundamentalism". I didn't even have to read all of his work to know that this one would sum up his views. The liberals are nothing if not predictable.
Fr. Ryan has a yoga website here with a discussion of his "spiritual journey. And there is a Paulist Center in Boston.
Just chalk it up to things that make you go hmmmmm.
Well, when you know you have the Paulists upset with you,you can only know that you have made it, you have really arrived, as evidenced by the fact that you have all the right enemies.
What annoys me is the idea that the writer does not say he will BUY THE BOOK. He is probably going to go into Barnes and Noble with a latte in one hand and the book in the other. Cheapskate.