August 2004 Archives (28)

The Words and the Music

The ending of this story has been haunting me for the past two weeks: Mark Twain’s wife, a prim and proper lady, tried to shock him one time out of his use of vulgar language. She greeted him at the door, cursed him up one side and down the other with all of the words […]

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Baby Feet

Baby feet love to play. They are fresh and smooth and soft and plump. They are not yet worn flat by the weight and toil of living life, and cramped by constricting shoes. They are sensitive and responsive, with a fetal-like curl to the slightest touch. Their toes wiggle with a joy for life, stretching to reach their full spread, to their full potential. They are happy with anticipation, of skipping and hopping up the path, back to home in heaven.

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My Heart Is Greater Than My Wounds

I know that I have to trust that You will be with me, however broken and wounded my soul. I do not have to earn Your love, I do not have to be healthy and whole. I need only to remember that my heart is greater than my wounds, that You await me there with Your healing presence. — John Kirvan

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For Beginning the Day

O Lord, grant me to greet the coming day in peace, help me in all things to rely upon your holy will. In every hour of the day reveal your will to me. Bless my dealings with all who surround me. Teach me to treat all that comes to me throughout the day with peace of soul and with firm conviction that your will governs all. In all my deeds and words, guide my thoughts and feelings. In unforeseen events, let me not forget that all are sent by you. Teach me to act firmly and wisely, without embittering and embarrassing others. Give me strength to bear the fatigue of the coming day with all that it shall bring. Direct my will, teach me to pray. And you, yourself, pray in me. Amen

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Lord, teach me to be generous. Teach me to serve you as you deserve; to give and not count the cost, to fight and not to heed the wounds, to toil and not to seek for rest, to labor and not to ask for reward, save that of knowing that I do your will. — St. Ignatius of Loyola

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What Would I Say?

Inspired by Karen and Steve: What would I blog about if I could blog today? I’d write about how this pair of birds, little swallows or swifts, not sure which, built a nest over my front door; how they had a family of five in June; and how they grew up and flew away to […]

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When I Look to the Sky

Cause when I look to the sky something tells me you’re here with me, And you make everything alright, And when I feel like I’m lost something tells me you’re here with me, And I can always find my way when you are here — Train

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What if a demon…

What if a demon were to creep after you one night, in your loneliest loneliness, and say, ‘This life which you live must be lived by you once again and innumerable times more; and every pain and joy and thought and sigh must come again to you, all in the same sequence. The eternal hourglass […]

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Avoid This Intersection?

Somedays it feels like I’ve been involved in an accident at this intersection: Photo by Stephen Urich

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They Call Me “Mister Woo”

My students have a nickname for me. They call me “Mister Woo”. You know that they like you if you have a nickname, at least one they can call you in front of your face. It all started three years ago during the first couple months at my new high school. I was not so […]

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Be Still

From John Kirvan’s book, Raw Faith: Let nothing disturb you. Let nothing make you afraid. — St. Teresa of Avila It’s amazing how many of us think that being anxious and worried is a sign that we are spiritual, that we are committed, that we are not like everyone else, content to live on the […]

Where’s the Joy?

The previous entry reminded me of a story. A priest visited a Trappist Monastery for a couple weeks as a retreat for rejuvenating his spirit. (I think the priest was Henri Nouwen.) The abbot confided in the priest that he was thinking of asking one of the novices to leave the community. He asked the […]

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The “Rejoice” Stone

At the first teacher meeting of the new school year, my principal had agendas laid out at every seat. Located on top of each small stack of papers, was a little, polished metalic slug with a word etched into it. I sat down at a seat with the word “rejoice”. That is going to be […]

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Faith’s Fishing Boat

on this deep sea of sadness / faith’s fishing boat / trawls the solemn depths / and in my nets joy collects / like slow fish / fat from feeding / in the deep darkness — H.J. Hughes

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Mary, Our Lady

Some things to think about on this day, the Solemnity of the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary— From Fr. Ken: Mary, the mother of Jesus, enjoyed all the joys of being a mother. Mary, the mother of Jesus, suffered all the sorrows of being a mother. She accepted them both because of Jesus. She […]

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How Do You Greet the Morning?

Do you greet the morning sun each day with your to-do lists? Or do you greet the sun with prayer and silence? Do you greet the morning with clenched hands stuffed with your own devices? Or do you greet the morning by extending an empty hand to the world and waiting for wonder to happen? […]

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Day by Day

Day by day, dear Lord, of Thee Three things I pray: To see Thee more clearly, To love Thee more dearly, To follow Thee more nearly, Day by day. — St. Richard of Chichester

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Somebody to Everybody

Spirituality is about relationships. Every man, woman, and child bears to us the presence of God. — Fr. Daniel Homan, Radical Hospitality I heard this Reba McEntire song on the radio this morning, “Somebody”. It is about this piece of advice this guy gets about looking for someone to fall in love with. At a […]

Consequences of Conditional Love?

We are familiar with Jesus’ call to agape love, to love unconditionally. But we live in a fallen world. We are not perfect. Which makes me wonder: What are the consequences of conditional love? (Please share your thoughts within the comments.)

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Benedictine Values

While searching for some Benedictine weblogs, I found the following list of quotes highlighting Benedictine spirituality at One House. The original source is unknown, but the quotes come from the Rule of Benedict. The use of the word “rule” is meant as a “guide”, not a list of do’s and dont’s. Karen may describe the […]

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A Frightening Conclusion…

Every year that I have taught, going on 14 years now, I have had a copy of this quote taped to the inside of my gradebook as a reminder: I have come to a frightening conclusion. I am the decisive element in the classroom. It is my personal approach that creates the climate. It is […]

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A Family Prayer

I found this prayer at DeoOmnisGloria that is perfect for the family (or small group or school): Our forgiving Lord, we praise you for your unconvential love, compassion, and understanding. It is through your sacrifice that we come together and praise you in song and prayer for all eternity. Jesus, it is through our selfishness […]

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Hospitality – Part 1

I discovered a plethora of quotes in reading Radical Hospitality: Benedict’s Way to Love by Fr. Daniel Homan and Lonni Collins Pratt. Each quote kind of stands on its own, but together they form a picture of Benedictine spirituality. Hospitality is the answer to hostility. Jesus said to love your neighbor; hospitality is how. (Introduction) […]

First Day at College

Along with my many responsibilities of being a teacher in a small, catholic high school, I drive a small school bus for a morning route. Due to moving the beginning of the school day a half hour earlier this year, many days I have the opportunity to drive the bus home each night. This year, […]

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Hospitality – Part 2

More quotes from Radical Hospitality: Benedict’s Way to Love by Fr. Daniel Homan and Lonni Collins Pratt. See Part 1. Genuine spirituality is not cozy, and seldom makes you comfortable. It challenges, disturbs, unsettles, and leaves you feeling like someone is at the center of your existence on a major remodeling mission. While affirming how […]

Hospitality – Part 3

More quotes from Radical Hospitality: Benedict’s Way to Love by Fr. Daniel Homan and Lonni Collins Pratt. See Part 2. When we create a life surrounded by people just like ourselves, it is a very narrow life. We will not be challenged by such a life. We cave in on ourselves; our minds and spirits […]


“Solitude is frightening for some and simply baffling for others.” “There is a big loneliness at the center of every person. It is universal. There’s a reason for the loneliness. It is meant to lead you somewhere. Even if you are unconscious of it, the big lonely is driving you homeward.” Fr. Daniel Homan and […]

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Two Sides of Darkness

I am a pilgrim stuck between two sides of darkness. I am happy, do not get me wrong, but I feel a little sense of restlessness. Behind me is one darkness, or at least I am on the outer edge of its shadow. (I hope.) I see, or rather sense down the road another darkness. […]

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