Sunday, April 29, 2018

More Pictures of April 28 Planned Parenthood Rally

The rally featured testimonies, a rosary, and hymns.

The goals of this rally and others like it are to educate people about Planned Parenthood, and to call for the end of government funding for the nation's largest abortion provider. We will be back there with the hope that this abortion clinic will close.

Pax et bonum

Saturday, April 28, 2018

April 28, 2018 Rally at Planned Parenthood

More than 60 people joined us outside Rochester's Planned Parenthood, one of more than 140 such rallies held across the country calling for defunding Planned Parenthood and an end to abortion.

Pax et bonum

I am embarrassed

While searching for something, I read through a diary I kept for more than a decade in my 30s and 40s.

I was horrified.

The arrogance and unkindness were palpable.

I feel as if I need to apologize to almost everyone with whom I had any significant contact during those years - family, friends, co-workers.

I also realize I need to destroy that diary. I'd hate to have people see what I wrote. Too many people would be hurt.

Lord Jesus Christ, Son of the Living God, have mercy on me, a sinner.

Pax et bonum

Friday, April 27, 2018

Press Awards (yes, I have an ego)

I was in a discussion with a woman online and had occasion to note I had won a number of press awards during my career as a journalist. But then I realized I had no handy compilation of those awards (some individual, some shared).

Here's a start:

First Place

2002 - New York Press Association, Coverage of Health Care
2000 - Catholic Press Association, In-Depth Reporting
1998 - Catholic Press Association, Best Special Issue
1998 - Catholic Press Association, Best Editorial Page
1996 - New York Press Association, Coverage of Religion
1993 - New York Press Association, Coverage of Health, Health Care, and Science
1992 - Catholic Press Association, Best Feature Story

I think there's at least one more first; need to look at my files!

There are a number of Seconds, Thirds and Honorable Mentions - need to find those as well. Here are some:

Second Place

1994 - Catholic Press Association - General Excellence (staff)
1993 - New York Press Association - Best News Story
1993- Catholic Press Association - General Excellence (staff)

Third Place

1998 - Catholic Press Association, Best Editorial
1996 - New York Press Association - Coverage of Religion (staff)
1995 - Catholic Press Association, Best Analysis/Background/Round-Up Reporting
1994 - New York Press Association, Best Picture Story
1994 - Catholic Press Association, Best Family Life Column (as editor)
1990 - New York Press Association, Best Sports Feature Story

Honorable Mention

1998 - Catholic Press Association, Best Profile
1996 - New York Press Association, Best Coverage, of Health, Health Care, and Science (staff)
1995 - Catholic Press Association, Best Analysis/Background/Round-Up Reporting (Priests and stress)
1994 - Catholic Press Association, Best Analysis/Background/Round-Up Reporting (Papal Infallibility)
1994 - New York Press Association, Best Feature Story
1989 - New York Press Association, Best News Story
1987 - New York Press Association, Rookie of the Year

- I will update this as I find more.

Pax et bonum

Sunday, April 22, 2018

Monsters from the Id

Image result for Monster from the id

Dying, the Krell left
behind the power to free
monsters from the id.

Pax et bonum

The Bible on homosexual acts

You hear some folks saying that the Bible doesn't really say anything condemning homosexual activity. Here are a few Bible passages that clearly do:

"Do you not know that the unjust will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived; neither fornicators nor idolaters nor adulterers nor boy prostitutes nor sodomites nor thieves nor the greedy nor drunkards nor slanderers nor robbers will inherit the kingdom of God" (1 Corinthians 6:9-10).

"For this cause God delivered them up to shameful affections. For their women have changed the natural use into that use which is against nature. And, in like manner, the men also, leaving the natural use of the women, have burned in their lusts one towards another, men with men working that which is filthy, and receiving in themselves the recompense which was due to their error" (Romans 1:26-27).

"Now we know that the law is good, if any one uses it lawfully, understanding this, that the law is not laid down for the just but for the lawless and disobedient, for the ungodly and sinners, for the unholy and profane, for murderers of fathers and murderers of mothers, for manslayers, immoral persons, sodomites, kidnappers, liars, perjurers, and whatever else is contrary to sound doctrine" (1 Tim. 1:8–10).

"You shall not lie with a male as with a woman; such a thing is an abomination" (Leviticus 18:22).

"Likewise, Sodom, Gomorrah, and the surrounding towns, which, in the same manner as they, indulged in sexual promiscuity and practiced unnatural vice, serve as an example by undergoing a punishment of eternal fire" (Jude 1:7).

Now some folks try to spin these passages and other passages and so dismiss them, saying they are about others things and not homosexual acts per se - but that's all just spin.  

As for the argument that Jesus never said anything specifically against homosexual acts, so, the argument goes, such acts are therefore not condemned, there is a logical problem. Just because something is not named that does not mean it is permitted. Jesus did not specifically name bestiality, incest, the use of chemical weapons against civilians, and so on, but that does not mean that they are therefore morally permissible.

Moreover, Jesus said he came not to abolish the law (including Leviticus above):  "Do not think that I have come to abolish the Law or the Prophets; I have not come to abolish them but to fulfill them. For truly I tell you, until heaven and earth disappear, not the smallest letter, not the least stroke of a pen, will by any means disappear from the Law until everything is accomplished. Therefore anyone who sets aside one of the least of these commands and teaches others accordingly will be called least in the kingdom of heaven, but whoever practices and teaches these commands will be called great in the kingdom of heaven." (Matthew 5:17-19)

There are some practices that are changed, but the law itself, and the underlying teachings contained in them, are not changed.

When it comes to marriage, in the context of a question about divorce, "(Jesus) said in reply, “Have you not read that from the beginning the Creator ‘made them male and female’ and said, ‘For this reason a man shall leave his father and mother and be joined to his wife, and the two shall become one flesh’?" Notice that marriage - the appropriate context for sexual acts - involves a man and a woman.

The Bible - tradition - Church teachings - all clearly condemn homosexual acts.

I specify "acts" because people may have homosexual inclinations due to any variety of causes, but that inclination in and of itself is not a sin, and the individual who has such feelings is not simply just for that reason committing a sin. It is only in acting on such inclinations that one sins.

Again: Homosexuality is not a sin, it is a condition. We sin when we act.

And even if a person falls and sins in that way, he or she can still repent and find forgiveness and mercy from God, as is true of all of us sinners.

Pax et bonum

Saturday, April 21, 2018

Divorcing parents haiku

Image result for child runs to divorced parents

divorcing parents
avoid eye contact as
their child runs to them

Pax et bonum

Baseball haiku

Image result for Empty baseball field in twilight

player who struck out
to end the game
walks home alone

Pax et bonum

Saturday, April 14, 2018

Guess who was a Secular Franciscan?

Image result for Michelangelo art
Image result for Michelangelo art
Image result for Michelangelo art
Michelangelo, of course!
Pax et bonum

Touched By G.K. Chesterton? Help His Canonization!

Touched By G.K. Chesterton? Here's How You Can Help His Canonization! | ChurchPOP: There's still time to help!

Pax et bonum

TV Networks Ignore Pro-Life Walkout

TV Networks Ignore Pro-Life Walkout, Spent 10 Minutes Covering Gun Walkout: It was a tale of two protests. After a school walkout against gun violence in March, students across the country organized a pro-life walkout ...

We've gotten used to this kind of  ignoring of us.

Sunday, April 8, 2018

Secular Franciscan Spirituality

Image result for St. Francis with Secular Franciscans

As a summary of the elements of Franciscan spirituality, a Franciscan should live:

- in communion with Christ poor and crucified,
- in the love of God,
- in brother/sisterhood with all people and all of creation,
- participating in the life and mission of the Church,
- in continual conversion,
- in a life of prayer – liturgical, personal, communal,
- as instruments of peace.

Pax et bonum

Saturday, April 7, 2018

Currently reading ...

Image result for my sisters the saints

After a few false starts on other books, I'm now reading My Sisters the Saints by Colleen Carol Campbell. Enjoying it - even cited it at men's group this morning.

It's interesting seeing a young person finding faith amidst the pressures of our secular culture.

I'm tempted to buy some extra copies to give to certain people, but that would likely not be taken well!

Pax et bonum

Pothole season

Image result for deep pothole

pothole season -
wondering if that last one
reaches to China

Pax et bonum

Friday, April 6, 2018

Some new poems

outside the clinic
a crocus emerges
from the snow

the caravan breaks
against a wall of words
moon hidden by clouds

the new moon
hidden behind the clouds -
reciting Matins

only the moon
is there as I walk the dog
Holy Saturday

Pax et bonum

Sunday, April 1, 2018

Christ Is Risen - Matt Maher

Pax et bonum

On reading Shiki (and about persimmons)

Image result for masaoka shiki

In a haiku mood, I read a collection of the poems of Masaoka Shiki (translated by Burton Watson). Shiki (1867-1902) is generally listed as one of the four great haiku poets (Basho, Buson, Issi, and Shiki), and is credited with helping to revive haiku at time when it was growing stale and to set the direction for modern haiku.

He once observed, "Take your materials from what is around you - if you see a dandelion, write about that; if it's misty, write about the mist. The materials for poetry are all about you in profusion."

That philosophy has helped to guide contemporary haiku poets - and really is good advice for any poet.

I've always enjoyed his poetry, including his baseball haiku.

spring breeze
this grassy field makes me
want to play catch  

It was good to dive into his poetry again.

But this time I noticed the number of his poems that mention persimmons.

Plunging into
a ripe persimmon -
getting my beard all messy with it

I eat a persimmon
and a bell starts booming -
Horyu-ji      -  (the name of a temple)

Persimmons made me think of it -
the face of the maid
at that inn in Nara

Tell them
I was a persimmon eater
who liked haiku

And there are more such poems.

I've never eaten a persimmon.

I did not even know what one looked like.
Image result for persimmon

I did a little research and discovered there are a number of varieties of them, including an American  version.

Image result for persimmon

I'm curious.

I wonder if any of our local stored have them?

a sudden desire
to eat a persimmon -
reading Shiki.

Pax et bonum