"Never be in a hurry; do everything quietly and in a calm spirit. Do not lose your inner peace for anything whatsoever, even if your whole world seems upset." Saint Francis De Sales

Friday, August 29, 2014

My Slow Takes About Peter, Noah, Clay Christensen and Labor Day.

1. Father John presented an interesting Homily last Sunday. The Gospel reading centered on Peter becoming the "rock" of the Church.

“And so I say to you, you are Peter,
and upon this rock I will build my church,
and the gates of the netherworld shall not prevail against it. 
I will give you the keys to the kingdom of heaven. 
Whatever you bind on earth shall be bound in heaven;
and whatever you loose on earth shall be loosed in heaven.”  MT 16: 18-19

Our Church was built by Jesus. We do not own the Church but, we are part of it. Jesus laid the foundation and we are the bricks that build upon it. Each of us blending together to support and strengthen it.  And we must continually work to add more bricks, good bricks, so that nothing will “prevail against it.”

2. Dee and I watched the movie Noah, starring Russell Crowe. Although the story line resembled the original it was not Biblically accurate. It's a movie, not a documentary. I have seen many of Russell’s movie's and his acting continues to be excellent. My favorite character was Lia. I have been a fan of Emma Watson all through the Harry Potter films. Her portrayal of the adopted survivor was a demonstration of her ability to communicate true emotions of the character. An outstanding performance.

3. Bill Cosby once did a sketch on Noah. It is original and humorous. 

4. The Battle of Crecy was fought on August 26, 1346 in Northern France. It is the battle of King Edward lll and his English Long Bows against King Philip VI of France. Bernard Cornwell has written an excellent historical fiction trilogy known as the “Grail Quest.” The first novel, "Heretic" includes the Battle of Crecy. (Please note that in the United States, the first novel is entitled, "The Archer's Tale." 

5. I wrote about “The Cat in My Yard” in February. His appearance has been almost nonexistent and I thought that he may have moved on. Last weekend he showed up again. No change in his character. He just wanders in and finds himself a comfortable place to sit and watch for his next meal. 

6. Clay Christensen, a professor at the Harvard Business School. This was sent to me by my brother-in-Christ Mike. It is an interesting point of view on “Religious Freedom.”

7. Next Monday is Labor Day. Please enjoy the day with your family and friends. Also remember it is the day we honor the “contributions and achievements of American workers.”

Read other "Takes" at Conversion Diary.

Friday, August 22, 2014

My Slow Takes About The Temptations, Sam Cooke, The Blues Brothers and Father Barron

.1. The Temptations - I Wish It Would Rain, from 1968. The song was number four on the “Billboard Hot 100.”

2. Sam Cooke - Another Saturday Night, from 1963. The song was number ten on the “Billboard Hot 100.”

3. On August 20, 1794, General “Mad Anthony” Wayne defeated the Shawnee Chief Blue Jacket. The engagement is known as the Battle of Fallen Timbers. This was the last battle of the Northwest Indian War and it removed all Native American claims to the Northwest Territory. 
Chief Blue Jacket
4. Matthew Zahnzinger of USA Today writes about a new wearable personable trainer. The product is “Athos.” It combines sensor-equipped clothes with your smartphone or tablet. Read his article, then check out the Athos website.
5. I own an Xbox 360 and love playing games, especially Halo. Last week when I turned on my console it started grinning at me. Not a happy smile that says, “Hey Paul, I'm ready to game!” It was an annoying red blinking mockery type of smile. One that says, “Sorry Paul, no games today or anytime. I’m done. Ha-ha-ha.” It is known as “The red ring of death.”
So now I must try to coax the little white box to reconsider it’s illness. Explain to it that it must rest itself and return to me the joys of companionship. The fun of gaming with mind and body fully engrossed in the fantasy of other worlds. But, so far nothing has worked. I sit and stare, there is no response.    

6. “We’re on a mission from God.” A statement that Dan Aykroyd repeated throughout the movie, “Blues Brothers.” He and John Belushi created the characters, Jake and Elwood Blues from Saturday Night Live. Our oldest son Eric was here last week and he and I once again watched this great movie. Sharing memories from the 80’s. 

Dan Aykroyd & John Belushi
7. A message from Father Robert Barron. 
“Introducing, the beautiful new Word on Fire website:
The website is unprecedented in many ways. You can now browse thousands of my resources by topic, Biblical verse, Catechism paragraph, liturgical reference, and more. It's elegant, it's easy to use, and I think you'll really enjoy it.”

Read other "Takes" at Conversion Diary.

Saturday, August 9, 2014

My Slow Takes About Halo, The Hobbit, Jury Duty and Msgr. Michael.

1. I have been playing the video game “Halo” from the beginning. I own all the current series games and enjoy playing them. There is a new Halo TV series coming out in November, and the trailer is excellent.

2. The third movie of “The Hobbit,” will be released in December. This is titled, “The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies.” Peter Jackson has done an excellent job of recreating Middle Earth and I’m looking forward to this concluding episode.

3. On August 4, 1753 George Washington became a Master Mason in the fraternity of Freemasonry. He was 21 years old. The ceremony was held in Fredericksburg, Virginia at the Masonic Lodge No. 4.

4. I received a “Summons For Petit Jury Duty” this week. The word “petit” made me wonder what type of jury I was being requested to take part in. Apparently a “petit jury” is different from a “grand jury.” A “grand jury” would be “convened to investigate different cases, like misconduct by politicians.” 

So, could it be something like “Runaway Jury?” Although, I’m no John Cusack.

5. "Rev. Msgr. Chester P. Michael, a retired priest of the Catholic Diocese of Richmond, died on Thursday, July 31, 2014, at the age of 97. Msgr. Michael was born in Berkeley Springs, WV, in 1916, ordained to the priesthood at the Cathedral of the Sacred Heart in 1942, and was a faithful priest of the Diocese for 72 years. Please remember Msgr. Michael and his family in your prayers."

6. Patty Loveless, “When Fallen Angels Fly.” I love her voice and her music.

7. Father Kenneth Doyle has a “Question Corner” at NWI Catholic. The Richmond Diocese publication, "The Catholic Virginian" posted some of the questions and answers in the August 4th edition. One of the questions that we discussed at our men’s group this week was about cremains at a funeral Mass. Father Doyle’s answer; 

“For many centuries, the Catholic Church did not permit cremation, due principally to the Church's belief in the resurrection of the body.

Even today, while it does allow cremation, the Church clearly prefers traditional burial or entombment as noted in the Code of Canon Law No. 1176, Section 3.
In 1963, when the Vatican lifted its long-held ban on cremation, it still did not allow the cremated remains to be present at a funeral Mass. But later, in 1997, the bishops of the United States applied for and received permission to have a funeral Mass celebrated in the presence of the cremains.
It is now the prerogative of the bishop of each U.S. diocese whether to permit this, and many bishops do. At the Mass, the cremains are usually placed on a small table near the altar, in front of the paschal candle, and they are reverenced with holy water and incense during the ritual.”

Read other "Takes" at Conversion Diary.

Friday, August 1, 2014

My Slow Takes About Fr. John, Steve Givens, Jim and Shane.

1. Our Pastor, Father John made his Cursillo last weekend. Dee and I attended the closing and enjoyed listening to him talk about his experiences. He said what a wonderful blessing it would be if everyone in our parish would attend a Cursillo weekend.  

2. On Monday, “Today’s Word,” by Steve Givens was “afraid.” He said that “the fear that God delivers us from is the fear of being alone and helpless when things happen. That life is fragile and always ends in physical death and separation from those we love is one of the harshest realities we learn.” There is hope and it is “be not afraid.” God asks us to “look beyond what we cannot see.” We should seize and hold firmly God’s hand. His hand is always there for us, we are never alone.
I have many friends who are going through illnesses that will be changing their lives and I pray for them daily. Steve has made me realize that I should not fear for them. I should not be afraid for what my future holds. I should take hold of my love in God and walk boldly ahead. 

3. Cancer affects many people I know. Some of it has been devastating and some of it has been cured. There is also recurring cancer. That which lingers and plagues us. A constant reminder of how horrible the illness is. My brother-in-Christ, Jim, has this type of cancer. He has been living with it for over 19 years. He doesn’t complain and he is not afraid. His faith and love of God keeps him strong. His love and support of others is overwhelming. He visits the sick, brings them comfort and prayer. He is the overseer who reaches out to our Epiphany community asking for assistance for those who need it. Never for himself. My “inbox” contains weekly and sometimes daily updates on those who require prayer. We are blessed to have him and pray that God gives him many more years here on earth. Please add Jim to your  prayers this week.

4. This beach art was shared by my cousin Marina. It is much better than the sand castles I build.

5. The new “man-cave” is filling in nicely. Here are a couple of pictures showing my computer desk and hobby table. There is room to place a second hobby table for gaming.

6. On April 1, 1953, Paramount Pictures released the movie, “Shane.” The leading character, Shane, was played by Alan Ladd. It is know as one of the greatest westerns made. I didn’t see the movie until the 1960’s, but it held my attention and reinforced my love of westerns.

Alan Ladd
7. My favorite commercial. Jessie riding off into the sunset with Daisy calling him. A little different from the old Western movies.

Read other "Takes" at Conversion Diary.