Cluster of wheat image Grapes and vines image Cluster of wheat image
August 23rd, 2013


In life time is always present
And as each second ticks away
A part of us is gone forever
Until our final day.
It’s said that time is constant
And every second is the same –
A day for me is a day for you.
A fact that does not change.
If this is so, it’s funny
That in so many different ways
Time seems ever changing
As we live it every day.
The sun comes up each morning,
Giving all an equal start.
But why is my day longer
When I have a heavy heart?
In joy the days are fleeting,
Flying by us ten by ten,
And it seems tomorrow’s comings
Will never cease to end.
The years of youth are longer
Than those of older friends
Whose perception is much different
When looking from their end.
Feeling well,  the days are passing,
Each one a new surprise,
For the ill a day’s a lifetime,
A  forever in disguise.
For love, time is but a moment,
Lying together in the sun,
Yet, how long each passing hour
When apart from loving ones?
For the heart knows no second,
Nor hour of any kind,
It just beats to the rhythm
Of the body and the mind.
“How long is time?” you ask me.
“Is it a moment or forever,
Or just a frame to live in
As we walk through life together?”
I believe that time’s a measure.
One that varies in a way
That depends on how we live it
As we use each passing day.
And that time alone is nothing
Unless blending with the being.
It needs a heart and soul to live
And people are its meaning.
With time and life in concert
There is music ever flowing,
For time that beats to living
Is the melody of our growing.
In life this song is  sung
As a harmony with a blending
Of the ticking and the beating
Till the day of final ending.
So lend one ear to the ticking,
But keep the other to the beat
By living life the fullest
As you trod along its street.
Do not wait for days to fly by
Or for moments to stand still,
Love your life and what you’re living
So life’s measure may be filled.
Until the time when we are with Him –
It may be short or it may be long,
But it makes so little difference
When your time in life’s a song.
…………………By Ernie Hodson
August 11th, 2013


We were singing “The Cry of the Poor” at Mass but the words in the new songbook weren’t the words I had learned.  The first verse used to be

“I will bless the Lord at all times.  His praise ever in my mouth.  Let my soul glory in the Lord, For he hears the cry of the poor.”

Now it went

“I will bless the Lord at all times.  With praise ever in my mouth.  Let my soul glory in the Lord, Who will hear the cry of the poor.”

Who are the people who have changed the words in this song and in other songs that I once knew and enjoyed?  Is this always done with the permission of the author?  Some of the changes are awkward, with little regard to grammatical antecedents.  Why is somebody so determined not to call the Lord “He?”

Then came the homily that was the final straw prompting this article.  The priest referred to “our forefathers and foremothers!”  What next?  Will they change the Gettysburg Address (never mind what Lincoln actually said) to “Fourscore and seven years ago our fathers and mothers brought forth on this continent….”?

Who are they who have decided that our language does not mean what it has always meant?  Linguistics experts report that the use of “man” to refer to a member of the human race predates the use of “man” to refer to an adult male.  “Man does not live by bread alone.”  “No man is an island.”  “What does it profit a man if he gains the whole world…..”  “Time and tide wait for no man.”  “Unless a man be born again…..”  “Man’s inhumanity to man.”  “Friends, Romans, countrymen!”  “Man overboard!”  All of these sayings have suddenly become incomprehensible or unacceptable because they do not include women?

Of course they include women!  They always have.  “Man” is a generic term meaning “humankind.”  Women have always had a word of their own.  Most animals have separate words for the male and female of the species–stallion/mare, buck/doe, billy goat/nanny goat, rooster/hen, and so forth.  But the human male actually has no word of his own; he has to share.

From whence comes this urge to get the “men” out of “women?”  California State University has a course in “Wymyn’s Studies!”  Others spell it “wimmin.”

Fifty years ago New York’s Museum of Modern Art had a photography exhibit titled “The Family of Man” and the subsequent book of photographs with the same title met with great critical acclaim for its depiction of men, women, and children the world over.  Everyone understood the title and no one complained about it.  Now it apparently would be insensitive and politically incorrect.

Language is an organic thing that grows with roots and branches.  They are uprooting it and retrofitting it with artificial glosses to correct a perceived but non-existent slight and we do not withhold our “Amen.”   (We’d better get the “men” out of that, too!)

Next they will be correcting Shakespeare!  There goes the iambic pentameter; here comes the bastardization of the product of genius!

Friends, Romans, countrypeople, lend me your ears,
I come to bury Caesar, not to praise him,
The evil that men and women do lives after them..

Dr. Helen Dietz, in a protest to the National Conference of Catholic Bishops on proposed inclusive changes in our English liturgy wrote, “Jesus said, ‘Be ye perfect as your heavenly Father is perfect’ not ‘be ye perfect as your Heavenly Supreme Being is perfect.’  Today when there are so many fatherless households is not the time to be promoting a fatherless universe.”  She also noted that adopting inclusive language “introduces awkward circumlocutions…which do not reflect the way people ordinarily speak.”

We all know that God is not a man or a woman but a Spirit.  Jesus said to call him “Father.”  “Our Father who art in heaven.”  Or “Abba”  (Daddy).  Jesus called Mary “mother” and that makes sense to me.  God has the best of both masculine and feminine characteristics.   Genesis says that God created man in his image.  I especially like the RSV version of Genesis 5:2 which clearly illustrates the generic use of “man.”  “Male and female he created them and he blessed them and called them Man when they were created.”  Yet there are those who do not want to say “Father, Son,and Holy Spirit,” but rather “the Parent, the Child, and the Power!”

According to Webster, the second meaning of “he” refers to one whose sex is unknown or immaterial.  Webster should know.  “He who hesitates is lost.”  “Blessed be he who is poor in spirit..”  But lately I am seeing more and more writings peppered with him/her or s/he.  I have also seen (I kid you not) “history” transformed into “herstory.”

Scripture says quite clearly that the first woman came from man, but ever since men have been coming from women!  (1 Cor. 11,12)  God has given women plenty of status.

As for me, God is my Father, Jesus is my brother, and Mary is my mother.   And I do not feel that the “brotherhood of man” leaves me out.

“God has visited his people.”  Let’s see them fix that!




August 10th, 2013


A few nights ago I dreamed I was on Facebook and having trouble with it.  I have no idea what the trouble was but as I was waking up I somehow decided I would stay off Facebook for a month.  Once I was fully awake, I thought about that decision and wondered:  “Why not?”  What would be the downside of taking a month off from Facebook?  True, I keep up with family and friends on FB but should I spend so much time keeping up?  I still have email and my blog and it occurs to me that there were blogs I used to follow before I was addicted to FB.  Well, I clicked  the FB icon one last time to inform followers that I’d be away until September.  The next day I learned that grandson Jeremy and family were going to Guatemala for three weeks; they promised to send pics by FB.  I guess I’ll have to wait.  It seems I am already anxious for September to arrive so I can “catch up.”  Yesterday I came, purely by accident, across a video by “the ugliest girl on the internet.”  In a culture enamored of human beauty, what must it feel like to be “Miss Ugly?” It touched me so much that I immediately wanted to share it with FB friends.  I was able to do that  without actually going on the Facebook site.  So I did it.   How will this adventure go from now on?

Of course, if I can’t go on Facebook, I can’t play FB Scrabble!  Ever since Scrabble  updated itself, every time I open my iPad I’ve been getting a little pop-up that says, “Katy has played a word in Scrabble.   Close?  or Launch?”  And since Katy and I have two games going, when I close the first one, a second one pops up.  I close that and a third pops up, from Stephen.   It seems Stephen has played a word in Scrabble.  Close?  or Launch?  Stephen hasn’t been playing with me lately and I’d love to re-engage.    By this time, I have no idea why I opened the iPad in the first place.  I used to Launch whoever had just played a word because I knew they were waiting, intending to send a “quick” word and stop the pop-ups.  Sadly, the last time I opened the iPad I found I was being “nudged”  to take my turn.

In truth, I don’t know why I still enjoy Scrabble after having played hundreds of games.  I started Scrabbling just like I started blogging — just jumped in, without rules and without skills.  But even old folks can learn, and I’ve learned just enough to get by.  Too often I will settle and send a word with only 20 points because it’s “good enough” and I don’ feel like striving for my “best.”  Mostly, I think, it’s about keeping in touch.  That little “chat” feature that goes along with Scrabble keeps me in almost daily touch with my dear daughter in Indiana, who gave me the iPad in the first place.

Who knew?  It turns out that Facebook will not allow me to ignore Facebook.  After a couple of days of not going on, Facebook emailed me with “Hi, Dorothy, here’s some activity you may have missed on Facebook.”  I had 2 messages and 7 notifications.    It listed the names of the people who had posted statuses, photos, and more on Facebook.  I had missed some popular stories by other friends.  It even included seven itty-bitty pictures of my friends and if I so much as touched one of them my iPad would take me directly to their Facebook site.


Nikki Vikki, Joël le Vigne, Gypsy VonBeck, and 4 other friends have posted statuses, photos and more on Facebook.

So, only a week after beginning  my “Facebook Fast” I am itching to get back on.  Friends and relatives are traveling and will be sending updates and pics.  I came across a really great quote that I wanted to share with FB friends.  I wanted to send a message to someone on FB and I don’ t have an email address.  What stops me from giving up this moratorium nonsense?  I am reminded of something I read as a teenager about a woman who received a letter and put off opening it for several hours, trying to grow in patience and self-discipline, offering that wee sacrifice to her Lord.  How hard can it be for me to wait until September?

Which brings me to my first insight into Facebook — it is a major DISTRACTION!   In the same way that one enters a room and promptly clicks on the TV I used to open my iPad to see what was happening — usually without a thought that I’d be better off doing something else.  Both TV and FB are time thieves.  We seem to have a greediness for something new to amuse us, engage us, and with the World Wide Web and satellites available there is ALWAYS something new — no human can possibly keep up with all the fascinating things happening EVERYWHERE!  We get lured in and can waste inordinate amounts of time just wandering the world,  seeking, learning, sucking, feeding, grasping.   Perhaps inordinate is the operative word here.

Where is self-disclipline?  Where is BALANCE?  We can be stretched too far and too thin.  Balance consists in doing the will of God at the moment in our own little sphere.   Lead Thou me on.

August 4th, 2013


To Those I Love, by Isla Paschal Richardson

If I should ever leave you
     whom I love
To go along the silent way
     grieve not,
Nor speak of me with tears,
   but laugh and talk
Of me as if I were
     beside you there.
     (I’d come – I’d come,
     could I but find a way!
     But would not tears and grief
     be barriers?)
And when you hear a song
     or see a bird
I loved, please do not let
    the thought of me
Be sad . . . for I am loving you
     just as I always have . . .
You were so good to me!
There are so many things
     I wanted still to do,
So many things
     to say to you . . .
Remember that I
     did not fear . . . it was
Just leaving you that was
     so hard to face . . .
We cannot see Beyond . . .
But this I know:
I loved you so – ’twas heaven here
     with you!