Céad Míle Fáilte ~ A Hundred Thousand Welcomes!

Here we seek a rest in the shade, some cool water and a little kindness. This blog is dedicated to peace, truth, justice and a post- industrial, post-petroleum illumined world in spite of all odds against it. I very much like the line about the ancient knight (see poem below) "His helmet now shall make a hive for bees" It is reminiscent of "beating swords into ploughshares" a sentiment I heartily approve of. Thank you for visiting ~ I hope you return!

Waterfall Animation Pictures, Images and Photos

Saturday, January 31, 2009

After Nine Centuries (A Book Report)

I want to share my enthusiasm for a book I just finished reading:

After Nine Hundred Years: The Background of the Schism between the Eastern and Western Churches

by Yves Congar, O.P. 152 pgs. Fordham University Press, New York, 1959

Table of contents:


Advertisement: Read the complete book After Nine Hundred Years: The Background of the Schism between the Eastern and Western Churches by becoming a questia.com member. Choose a membership plan to an academic-level library with more than 67,000 full-text books, 1.5 million articles, an entire reference set with a dictionary, encyclopedia, thesaurus plus a collection of digital tools to organize your information.

After Nine Centuries, by Fr. Yves Congar, O.P. was first published in 1954, hence the title, which refers to the event of 1054. Fr. Congar discusses the causes of the schism and traces the path toward reunion. He points out that the "Oriental schism" was a gradual process of estrangement, with political, cultural, and linguistic factors being as important, if not more so, than the theological problems. Yet this gradual estrangement, which has never been complete, is not the schism per se. The real schism consists in the acceptance of that estrangement.

Interestingly, this assessment fits with what the Mother of God said to Myrna Nazzour, the visionary and stigmatic of Damascus: "The Church that Jesus adopted is One Church, because Jesus is One. The Church is the kingdom of Heaven on earth. He who has divided it has sinned. And he who has rejoiced from its division has also sinned." (March 24, 1983). This is Our Lady's own call to unity!

It is my opinion that three things need to be done in order for there to be true unity between the East and West: This is in no particular order, so each is numer 1:
1. The Orthodox need to acknowlege that the primacy of the Roman pontiff is of divine origin, given by the Lord Jesus to blessed Peter.
1. Rome needs to scale back its universal administration to practically nothing as far as the East is concerned and again function as the court of final appeal, as was the situation during the first millenium.
1. We Greek Catholics need to fully reclaim our Orthodox identity and return to our mother Churches once they have returned to union with Rome.

Remember that with God all things are possible!

Friday, January 30, 2009

Who are the Melkites?

Since the Rosemary Tree is called "An American Melkite Catholic blog for everybody" it occurred to me that some people out there must wonder just who the Melkites are. Many Catholics know that there is a Catholic "Rite" (autonomous-ritual Church) by that name, but nothing else. For those with inquiring minds, then, here is a very brief overview of the Melkite Church.

The name Melkite is derived from the common semitic root MELEK meaning King. A Melkite is a follower of the King.

Originally it was used as a term of derision and scorn by Syrian and Coptic Monophysites who rejected the dogmatic decisions of the Council of Chalcedon in A.D. 451. The Monophysites (believers in "one nature" of Christ) hurled the epithet "Melkites" at those who accepted the council because it's decisions were enforced by the Roman Emperor (Ha Melek) at Constantinople. The taunt was, "You are not followers of the true faith, but of the King - you are Melkites!" To this day you will hear Syrian and Coptic Orthodox and Armenian Apostolic apologists declare that the decisions of the Council of Chalcedon were politically directed and therefore not binding.

Although meant as a reproach, the name Melkite became a badge of honor for Orthodox (Chalcedonian) Catholics in Syria and Egypt. It was taken as designating their loyalty to the King of Heaven in his two chief representatives on earth: The Holy Father in Rome and the Emperor in New Rome (Constantinople).

For various reasons the liturgical rite of the Church of Constantinople, which we now call the Byzantine Rite, was gradually adopted by the Melkites of Egypt and Syria in place of the Alexandrine and Antiochian Rites, especially after the Islamic invasions of the seventh century.

After the schism of Patriarch Michael Cerularius of Constantinople in 1054, the Syrians subject to the Melkite Patriarch of Antioch (where the disciples of our Lord were first called Christians) remained in communion with both Rome and Constantinople. At times the patriarch was more in agreement with Rome, sometimes in greater sympathy with Constantinople. This situation continued until 1724, when Cyril Tanas was elected as the Melkite Patriarch of Antioch. Cyril was a strong Catholic, thoroughly loyal to the Pope of Rome. Unfortunately, not all the clergy and people shared his views. The following year they convened a synod which elected Sylvester of Cyprus as a rival patriarch. From this sad event springs the separation of the Melkite Greek Catholic Patriarchate of Antioch, Alexandria, and All the East from the Greek Orthodox Patriarchate of Antioch and All the East.

The name Melkite, however, was kept by the Catholics. Hence when speaking of the Melkite Church, one need not use the designation Catholic or Greek Catholic; it is understood from the word Melkite.

Thursday, January 29, 2009

The Rule of the Theotokos (Byzantine Rosary)

The Rule of the Theotokos is the Marian Rosary in a form which is indigenous to the Byzantine East, especially the Russian Church. Here is a brief account of its history and significance:

It is well known that Saint Seraphim of Sarov (1759 – 1833) prayed a form of the Rosary. Saint Seraphim’s Rule of the Theotokos consisted in one hundred and fifty repetitions of the Angelic Salutation, divided into fifteen decades. He said the Our Father only once at the beginning. The theotokion Open unto us the gate of compassion and a specific petition to Our Lady followed each decade. He ended his Rule with It is truly meet.

There is a remarkable parallel in this with the history of the Rosary in the West. In Saint Dominic’s time (1170 – 1221), Our Lady’s Psalter had fifteen decades of Aves, but there were as yet no appointed mysteries. The fifteen mysteries as we know them today are a later Dominican use which Pope Saint Pius V, himself a Dominican, codified in 1569.

Another important parallel is that in both the East and the West, tradition holds that the Rosary is not merely a pious human invention, but the Queen of Heaven herself gave it through private revelation. (This does not exclude a process of organic development within the Church.)

Saint Seraphim maintained that this rule of prayer had been given by the Mother of God to a monk in the Thebaid of Egypt in the early eighth century. He also lamented that the Orthodox had forgotten about it. He taught all his spiritual children to pray the Rule, claiming that this prayer is more important for obtaining Our Lady’s protection than any other devotion in her honor, including akathists and canons. In his cell he kept a book in which he recorded the many miracles reported to him as a result of its practice.

A plan of meditations which embrace the whole life of the Theotokos was devised by Bishop Seraphim (Zvezdinsky) of Dmitrov. He prayed the complete fifteen-decade Rule daily and encouraged all Christians to do likewise. Murdered by the Communists in 1937, he is a Holy New Hieromartyr of the Russian Church. The decade meditations given here are substantially the same as those offered by Saint Seraphim Zvezdinsky.

In the Encyclopedia of Orthodoxy (Moscow 2003), the Russian Church commends the Rule of the Theotokos to the Orthodox faithful.

For Catholics of the Byzantine Rite, daily praying the Rule of the Theotokos is a most appropriate devotion according to the mind of the Church: that we should cultivate our authentic spiritual tradition. It is thus a beautiful response to the urgent requests of Our Lady of Fatima that all her children should pray the Rosary.

Introductory Prayers

IN THE NAME of the Father + and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit. All: Amen.

Glory to thee, + our God, glory to thee.

O heavenly King, Comforter, Spirit of Truth, who art everywhere present and fillest all things; Treasury of Blessings and Giver of Life: come and dwell within us, cleanse us of all stain, and save our souls, O gracious Lord.


Throughout Pascha, instead of Glory & O heavenly King, take the Paschal Troparion:

Christ is risen from the dead, trampling down death by death, and upon those in the tombs bestowing life. (3 times: Leader, others, all in unison)

From Ascension until Pentecost, after the Sign of the Cross, continue the customary beginning:


Holy God, + Holy Mighty, Holy Immortal, have mercy on us. (3 times)

Glory to the Father + and to the Son and to the Holy Spirit: both now and ever, and unto the ages of ages. Amen.

All-holy Trinity, have mercy on us. Lord, cleanse us from our sins. Master, pardon our iniquities. Holy God, visit and heal our infirmities for thy name’s sake.

Lord, have mercy. (3 times)

Glory to the Father + and to the Son and to the Holy Spirit: both now and ever, and unto the ages of ages. Amen.

Our Father who art in heaven, hallowed be thy name; thy kingdom come; thy will be done, on earth as it is in heaven. Give us this day our daily bread; and forgive us our trespasses, as we forgive those who trespass against us; and lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil.

Leader: For thine is the kingdom, and the power and the glory, of the Father + and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit: now and ever, and unto the ages of ages. All: Amen.

Lord, have mercy. (12 times: Leader 6 times; others 6 times)

Glory to the Father + and to the Son and to the Holy Spirit: both now and ever, and unto the ages of ages. Amen.

Come, let us worship + and fall down before our King and God.
Come, let us worship + and fall down before Christ, our King and God.
Come, let us worship + and fall down before Christ Himself, our King and our God.

Psalm 50

Alternate by sentences between the leader and others.

HAVE MERCY upon me, O God, according to thy great mercy; according to the multitude of thy tender mercies, blot out mine iniquity.

Wash me thoroughly from mine iniquity, and cleanse me from my sin.

For I acknowledge mine iniquity, and my sin is ever before me.

Against thee only have I sinned, and done evil in thy sight; that thou mightest be justified in thy words, and prevail when thou art judged.

For behold, I was shapen in iniquity, and in sin did my mother conceive me.

For behold, thou hast loved truth; the unclear and hidden things of thy wisdom thou hast made clear to me.

Thou shalt sprinkle me with hyssop and I shall be clean; thou shalt wash me and I shall be whiter than snow.

Thou shalt make me to hear joy and gladness; the bones which thou hast broken shall rejoice.

Turn away thy face from my sins, and blot out all my iniquities.

Create in me a clean heart, O God, and renew a right spirit within me.

Cast me not away from thy presence, and take not thy Holy Spirit from me.

Restore unto me the joy of thy salvation, and steady me with a guiding spirit.

Then will I teach transgressors thy ways, and the ungodly shall be converted unto thee.

Deliver me from blood-guiltiness O God, thou God of my salvation, and my tongue shall sing aloud of thy righteousness.

O Lord, open thou my lips, and my mouth shall declare thy praise.

For hadst thou desired sacrifice, I would have given it thee; thou delightest not in burnt offerings.

Sacrifices to God are a contrite spirit; a contrite and humble heart, O God, thou wilt not despise.

Do good O Lord, in thy good will unto Zion; that the walls of Jerusalem may be built up.

Then shalt thou be pleased with the sacrifice of righteousness, with burnt offering and whole burnt offerings; then shall they offer bullocks upon thine altar.


During Bright Week, take the following Paschal Antiphon instead of Psalm 50.

Leader: Let God arise and let his enemies be scattered, and let them that hate him flee from before his face.

All: Christ is risen from the dead, trampling down death by death, and upon those in the tombs bestowing life.

Leader: As smoke vanisheth, so let them vanish; as wax melteth before the fire.

All: Christ is risen from the dead, trampling down death by death, and upon those in the tombs bestowing life.

Leader: So let sinners perish at the presence of God, and let the righteous rejoice.

All: Christ is risen from the dead, trampling down death by death, and upon those in the tombs bestowing life.

Leader: This is the day that the Lord hath made; let us rejoice and be glad in it.

All: Christ is risen from the dead, trampling down death by death, and upon those in the tombs bestowing life.

Leader: Glory to the Father + and to the Son and to the Holy Spirit: both now and ever, and unto the ages of ages. Amen.

All: Christ is risen from the dead, trampling down death by death, and upon those in the tombs bestowing life.


The Creed

I BELIEVE in one God, the Father Almighty, Maker of heaven and earth, and of all things visible and invisible.

And in one Lord Jesus Christ, the only-begotten Son of God, begotten of the Father before all ages: Light of Light, true God of true God, begotten not made, consubstantial with the Father, by whom all things were made.

Who for us men and for our salvation came down from heaven, and was incarnate of the Holy Spirit and the Virgin Mary, and became man.

He was also crucified for us under Pontius Pilate and suffered and was buried.

And he rose again on the third day according to the Scriptures.

And he ascended into heaven and sitteth at the right hand of the Father.

And he shall come again with glory to judge the living and the dead, whose kingdom shall have no end.

And in the Holy Spirit, the Lord, the Giver of life, who proceedeth from the Father: who together with the Father + and the Son is worshiped and glorified: who spoke by the prophets.

In one Holy Catholic and Apostolic Church.

I acknowledge one baptism for the remission of sins.

I look for the resurrection of the dead.

And the life of the age to come.


Prologue to the Decades

Say the Angelic Salutation 3 times (Leader, others, all in unison); then the following Theotokion once:

HAIL, O Virgin Theotokos, Mary, full of grace; the Lord is with thee. Blessed art thou among women, and blessed is the fruit of thy womb, for thou hast borne the Savior of our souls.

Glory to the Father + and to the Son and to the Holy Spirit; both now and ever and unto the ages of ages. Amen. Open unto us the gate of compassion, O blessed Theotokos; hoping in thee, we shall not fail; through thee may we be delivered from adversities; for thou art the salvation of the Christian People.

The Decade Pattern

The leader announces the decade meditation, using the sentences below. Then the following prayers are said:

1. Our Father (All in unison)
2. Hail, O Virgin Theotokos (10 times, alternating between the leader and others)
3. Glory...both now... Open unto us the gate of compassion (All in unison)

The Decade Meditations

The Nativity Cycle (Morning, or Mondays and Thursdays)

Let us remember the Birth of the Theotokos. Let us pray for mothers, fathers, and children.

Let us remember the Presentation of the Blessed Virgin Theotokos. Let us pray for those who have lost their way and fallen away from the Church.

Let us remember the Annunciation of the Blessed Theotokos. Let us pray for the soothing of sorrows and the consolation of those who grieve.

Let us remember the Visitation of the Blessed Virgin to the Righteous Elizabeth. Let us pray for the reunion of the separated.

Let us remember the Birth of Christ. Let us pray for the rebirth of souls; for new life in Christ.

The Passion Cycle (Midday, or Tuesdays and Fridays)

Let us remember the Meeting of the Lord, and the words of Saint Simeon to the Theotokos: "Yea, a sword shall pierce through thy own soul also." Let us pray that the Theotokos will meet our souls at the hour of our death, arrange that we receive the Holy Mysteries with our last breath, and lead our souls through the terrible torments.

Let us remember the Flight of the Theotokos with the Infant-God into Egypt. Let us pray that the Theotokos will help us avoid temptation in this life and deliver us from misfortunes.

Let us remember the Three-day loss of the Boy Jesus in Jerusalem, and the sorrow of the Theotokos as she sought him. Let us pray, begging the Theotokos for the constant repetition of the Jesus Prayer.

Let us remember the Miracle performed in Cana of Galilee, when the Lord turned water into wine at the word of the Theotokos: "They have no wine." Let us ask the Theotokos - who is quick to hear - for help in our affairs and deliverance from need.

Let us remember the Theotokos standing by the Cross of the Lord, when grief pierced through her heart like a sword. Let us pray to the Theotokos for the strengthening of our souls and the banishment of despondency.

The Resurrection Cycle (Evening, or Wednesdays, Saturdays, and Sundays)

Let us remember the Resurrection of Christ, and ask the Theotokos in prayer to resurrect our souls and give us a new courage for spiritual feats.

Let us remember the Ascension of Christ, at which the Theotokos was present. Let us pray and ask the Queen of Heaven to raise up our souls from earthly and worldly diversions, and direct them to striving for higher things.

Let us remember the Descent of the Holy Spirit upon the Apostles and the Theotokos. Let us pray: "Create in me a clean heart, O God, and renew a right spirit within me. Cast me not away from thy presence, and take not thy Holy Spirit from me."

Let us remember the Dormition of the Blessed Theotokos, and ask for a peaceful and serene end.

Let us remember the glory of the Theotokos, with which the Lord crowned her after she was taken up from earth to heaven. Let us pray to the Queen of Heaven not to abandon the faithful who are on earth, but to defend them from every evil, covering them with her protecting veil.

The Dismissal

IT IS TRULY MEET to call thee blessed, O Theotokos; the ever-blessed, all-immaculate, and the Mother of our God. More honorable than the Cherubim, and beyond compare more glorious than the Seraphim; who without corruption gavest birth to God the Word, and art truly Theotokos, we magnify thee.

Glory to the Father + and to the Son and to the Holy Spirit: both now and ever, and unto the ages of ages. Amen. (Throughout Pascha, substitute Christ is risen, once.)

Lord, have mercy. (3 times)

Leader: Through the prayers of our holy Fathers, O Lord Jesus Christ + our God, have mercy on us and save us. All: Amen.

Post-Dismissal Hymns

Beneath thy compassion we take refuge, O Theotokos; despise not our supplications in time of trouble, but deliver us from dangers, O only pure, only blessed one.

O most glorious, Ever-virgin Mary, Mother of Christ our God: accept our prayers and present them to thy Son and our God; that he may, for thy sake, enlighten and save our souls.

Who Is the Church of Philadelphia?

Over on the Fish Eaters Website someone asked: Who is the church of Philadelphia? Who does this church symbolize today? Anyone have any insight from the Church Fathers or other authorities?

I thought this was a significant question, so I took time to give a thorough response. I wanted to share it with all of you

Link: http://www.websitetoolbox.com/tool/post/apologia/vpost?id=3244783

I'm assuming you know that Philadelphia was one of the major cities of Asia Minor, and that John was addressing the bishop of the local church.

Because of the special praise which the Lord gives to this particular church based on their keeping of his word, it is especially tempting for suffering and persecuted conservatives/traditionalists to read their own group into it. This is common among fundamentalist protestants and traditionalist Catholics alike.

Just for reference, here is the passage:

7 And to the angel of the church of Philadelphia, write: These things saith the Holy One and the true one, he that hath the key of David; he that openeth, and no man shutteth; shutteth, and no man openeth: 8 I know thy works. Behold, I have given before thee a door opened, which no man can shut: because thou hast a little strength, and hast kept my word, and hast not denied my name. 9 Behold, I will bring of the synagogue of Satan, who say they are Jews, and are not, but do lie. Behold, I will make them to come and adore before thy feet. And they shall know that I have loved thee. 10 Because thou hast kept the word of my patience, I will also keep thee from the hour of the temptation, which shall come upon the whole world to try them that dwell upon the earth.

It is very important to begin with the literal and historical interpretation. This church and its bishop were undergoing intense persecution of an unspecified nature from the Jewish synagogue. That explains the reference to the "synagogue of Satan." They were evidently a small congregation with little earthly influence, yet they were persevering in their confession of the true faith of Christ without any compromise. This gave them great influence in heaven. Christ gives a twofold promise to them which he gives to no other church of Asia: (1) That members of the synagogue of Satan, the persecuting Jews would come and "worship before their feet." This would indicate that at least some of those Jews would be converted and declare their faith in Christ and his Church, repudiating their former error. (2) The Lord also promises that he will "keep them from the hour of the temptation which will come over the entire earth." This would refer to an imperial persecution, or it could not be over the whole world; worldwide in this context means throughout the Roman Empire. Some have thought this to refer to a persecution under Domitian (51 - 96). Eusebius of Cesarea mentions this. Others have referred it to the persecution under Trajan. Still others that it referred to the final and worst persecution under Diocletian, an event over two centuries after the writing of the Apocalypse. Whatever the persecution referred to, it does not necessarily mean that they would not undergo any suffering, but that they would be protected, "kept from" the trial of faith that others would undergo. Thus it is a promise of strong faith that will win the victory over the world.

Now, as I said, we ought to be careful how we apply this in the modern ecclesiastical situation. I would be especially cautious about its special application to one or another traditionalist group. Nevertheless it can apply in a general way to particular churches and their bishops who suffer Jewish persecution (and from other enemies) yet remain firm in their witness.

There is another interpretation to consider here: The seven churches of Asia Minor as an allegory of the seven ages of the church throughout history. Venerable Bartholomew Holzhauser taught this.

The seven ages are (copied from the Catholic Encyclopedia):

* (1) the Status seminativus, from Christ and the Apostles to Pope Linus and Emperor Nero, is typified by the first day of creation "Spiritus Dei ferebatur super aquas", the gift of wisdom and the age from Noah. Similarly he treats;
* (2) the status irrigativus, the days of persecution;
* (3) status illuminativus from Pope Sylvester to Leo III;
* (4) status pacifitcus from Leo III to Leo X;
* (5) status afflictionis et purgativus from Leo X to a strong ruler and holy pope;
* (6) status consolationis from that holy pope to the birth of Antichrist;
* (7) status desolationis from Antichrist to the end of the world.

Ephesus represents the apostolic age, which at its close found the church faithful in doctrine but lacking in its first love. Smyrna represents the age of persecutions. Pergamus represents the time of illumination from the Fathers, especially in the East, together with Balaam-like heresies. Thyatira represents the Church flourishing in peace in the high middle ages, especially in the West, but having Jezebel-like religious harlotries in its midst. Sardis is our own time, the age of affliction. The church suffering many heresies. ("You have a name that you are alive, but you are dead"). This brings us to Philadelphia, the faithful church, which represents the time ahead of us, the age of peace promised by Our Lady of Fatima, when multitudes will enter the Church. Those who are and remain truly faithful to the spirit of that time will also be kept from the corruption of the succeeding Laodicean age which will see the rise of Antichrist.

I would like to think that here and there throughout the Catholic world today there are souls who already exemplify the spirit of the sixth age, which is coming, the spirit of the church of Philadelphia.

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Aunt Pat: Memory Eternal

My dear aunt, Pat Spencer, passed away peacefully this morning in Phoenix, Arizona, with her two children, my dear cousins Michael and Dena, holding her hands.

I'll post a more lengthy tribute later. Please pray for her soul, all you Catholic and Orthodox readers, and anyone else who believes that prayer for the deceased does them good.

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

A Love Supreme

Dedicated to the life of Patricia Ann Lindley Spencer. God be merciful to me a sinner, and lead our sister Patricia to a place of peace, a place of verdure, where there is no more pain nor suffering, but Life everlasting.

Red Headed Stranger

I am always drawn back to this Willie Nelson album. I especially love his version of the old gospel hymn, "Just As I Am"

Just as I am, without one plea, but that thy blood was shed for me, and that thou bidst me come to thee, O Lamb of God, I come, I come.

Monday, January 26, 2009

Sunday, January 25, 2009

Please Pray For My Auntie

Dear Readers,

I received word that my dear Aunt Patricia, my mother's sister and the last surviving sibling of her family, has had a very bad stroke and is entering hospice. Please pray for her, her family, a good death if it be God's will that it be her time, and His Will over all.

It can be said of Aunt Pat that she has been always kind to me from early childhood up, and to my husband and my children. Always. Unfailingly kind, unselfish and thoughful. How many people can anyone say that of?

O Blessed Joseph,
you gave your last breath in the loving embrace of Jesus and Mary.
When the seal of death shall close my life (Thy handmaid Patricia's life)
come with Jesus and Mary to aid me/her.
Obtain for me this solace for that hour - to die with their holy arms around me/her.
Jesus, Mary and Joseph, I commend my soul (and the soul of Thy handmaid Patricia) living and dying, into your sacred arms.

The Cherubic Hymn

When this is being sung in the Divine Liturgy of St. John Chrysostom, the faithful are about the receive the Body and Blood of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ. No instruments are used when chanting Byzantine music, only the human voice can be used and nothing else. Modern Greek American churches have adopted use of the organ, but the true Byzantine chant has no accompaniment.

"Let us who mystically represent the Cherubim,
and chant the thrice-holy hymn unto the life-creating Trinity.
Lay aside all earthly cares,
that we may receive the King of all,
escorted invisibly by the angelic host. Alleluia."

Saturday, January 24, 2009

A Straight Shooter

John Médaille over at The Distributist Review gets it right, with straight talk that defines both problem and plausible solution. It is a matter of long concern that the big-picture isn't better seen by the very men and women who attempt
to manuver the ship off the shoals, pushing as hard as they can towards the shore rather than the sea.

QUOTE The new president has hit the ground running and I wish him well. But I have my doubts. He is not at all like the stumble-bum he replaces, of course. Rather, he is a thoughtful and intelligent man. And on economic matters, “The audacity of hope” is backed up by an economic team of truly impressive credentials. Indeed, this may be the most highly qualified group of people ever to serve in government.
And that's the problem. All of them are super-competent to be sure, but they are competent in the very techniques that caused the problem in the first place. They will attempt to solve the problem at the level of thinking that created it. Their plan is for a massive stimulus, and it is easy to see why. They believe it will work for the simple reason that it has worked. Indeed, since at least the 30's, and certainly since the 40's, the economy has been dependent on massive government expenditures—a permanent stimulus economy. And in general, this approach worked for a long time; the economy was more or less stable and prosperous, and the periodic shocks were mild and short-lived by pre-war standards. Given that record, they may well be excused for believing that the Keynesian magic will work yet again.

Friday, January 23, 2009

Padre Bennie Tube

Here comes the Pope's YouTube channel, launched today! Skateboarding guinea pigs in cassocks? or more staid stuff? Stay tuned to Il Papa for all the latest canonical cool.


Heya You, Shut Up & Eat Your Garlic Pasta

I'm sold on the Mediterranean diet. I've been reading articles about it and hearing people talk about it for years, and now here is evidence from ScienceDaily (and here and here) that it is justa soooo gooda for you. (The French paradox is interesting too.) Please pass the fruits, veggies, legumes, Parmesan reggiano, whole wheat pasta, polenta, wine, modest servings of lean meat, garlic, olive oil and fresh fish. Bellissimo!

QUOTE ScienceDaily (Apr. 25, 2005) — The Mediterranean diet is associated with longer life expectancy among elderly Europeans, finds a study published online by the British Medical Journal.
The Mediterranean diet is characterised by a high intake of vegetables, legumes, fruits, and cereals; a moderate to high intake of fish; a low intake of saturated fats, but high intake of unsaturated fats, particularly olive oil; a low intake of dairy products and meat; and a modest intake of alcohol, mostly as wine.

Current evidence suggests that such a diet may be beneficial to health.
The study involved over 74,000 healthy men and women, aged 60 or more, living in nine European countries. Information on diet, lifestyle, medical history, smoking, physical activity levels, and other relevant factors was recorded. Adherence to a modified Mediterranean diet was measured using a recognised scoring scale.
A higher dietary score was associated with a lower overall death rate. A two point increase corresponded to an 8% reduction in mortality, while a three or four point increase was associated with a reduction of total mortality by 11% or 14% respectively.
So, for example, a healthy man aged 60 who adheres well to the diet (dietary score of 6-9) can expect to live about one year longer than a man of the same age who does not adhere to the diet.
The association was strongest in Greece and Spain, probably because people in these countries follow a genuinely Mediterranean diet, say the authors.


One liners - an even baker's dozen!

If you don't pay your exorcist you may get repossessed.

Photons have mass? I didn't even know they were Catholic.

If a man says something in a forest with no women around to hear him, is he still wrong?

I tried writing a drinking song, but I couldn't get past the first few bars.

The race for progress has no finish line; so, technically, it's more a death march.

I'd kill for a Nobel Peace Prize.

A will is a dead giveaway.

You're unique and special.........just like everyone else!

In wine there is wisdom, in beer there is freedom, in water there is bacteria.

I couldn't get lucky in a women's penitentiary with a handful of pardons.

Saying ‘I’m sorry’ is the same as saying ‘I apologize.’ Except at a funeral.

They say gambling is a sin, but I bet you 10 to 1 it isn't.

Did you hear the pope came down with bird flu? He caught it from a cardinal. (OK, ok, it's not a one-liner, but I'm done!)

Rebels of The Sacred Heart

A blessed Friday to you all and may you find a pint of Guinness in your near future, especially all ye rebels of the Sacred Heart out there.

my new irish tattoo Pictures, Images and Photos

Thursday, January 22, 2009

God Is Alive

I first heard this wonderful Leonard Cohen song/poem when I was very young, maybe 14 or so. It has always struck me as a potent and true expression of the sacramental nature of the material world, not to be mistaken for animism, but somewhat akin to it - the Catholic sense that God's Magic, His Mystery (mysterion, agape, nous and sophia) trumps all attempts to diminish it, that Christ is indeed rised from the dead and has once and for all trampled down death by His death, and bestows life upon those in the very tombs.
Sung by Cree singer-composer Buffy Sainte-Marie.

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Song of the Day

There's No One as Irish as Barack O'Bama...

Red Tailed Hawk Soars Over The Capitol

photo credit: richard seaman

In some Native American traditions the red tailed hawk carries the role of visionary and messenger. Hawk served the role akin to Mercury, bringer of messages and portents of change. Hawk reminded the people they needed to be awake and aware. This honorable totem symbol brings the lesson of discovering dormant abilities and helps us to see the big picture. It is a symbol of illumination and peace. In the Pomo tribe Red Tailed Hawk was a symbol, along with the Great Horned Owl, of protection and a sure defense against enemies both seen and unseen.

The hawk was considered an animal symbol of victory and freedom to the ancient Celts. It is typically depicted in Celtic art clutching or devouring a rabbit which was symbolic of lust, greed or frittering away resources.

I find it really cool and interesting that a red tailed hawk should soar above the inauguration yesterday. Sometimes Holy Spirit speaks to us so clearly.

From the Lincoln Journal Star:

QUOTE As President Barack Obama finished his inaugural speech Tuesday, Frank LaMere watched a red-tailed hawk circle the U.S. Capitol.The moment for LaMere symbolized the soaring spirits of those privileged to witness history and hear Obama’s call to action.“Looking around Washington right now, you can feel a new energy, barely minutes old but clearly there,” said LaMere, a Winnebago tribal member, shortly after Obama’s swearing-in Tuesday. UNQUOTE

The View From Integral Llife

I found this in my inbox just now, and aside from the fluff-bunny, new-age scent of patchouli oil, it has its merits. Be sure and click on over and read the whole thing.

It is worth contemplating that often nuggets of gold can be found where one least expects them, and that if one maintains an humble, serving spirit one may find "gold" in unlikely places.

From IntegralLife.com by Robb Smith
QUOTE The leading paradigm for handling this diversity, multiculturalism (and its insistence that all views are equal), has failed under the weight of its own absurdity. After all, if all views are equal than we cannot even accept our own views with any real seriousness, and we’re left to cope with our very own lives with either narcissism (“I am everything”) or nihilism (“I am nothing”). (Today’s teenagers are the canaries in this coal mine, essentially screaming for a way out of the existential crisis they’ve been taught to espouse.) That 2008 provided such frequent and horrific examples of what goes wrong with both ends of this spectrum only underscores its symbolism as the year the Information Age ended (sort of loud and painfully, as these things often do...).

President Obama recognizes this unique moment in history and will call on all of us to join together in a unity that can be formed only in a cauldron of deep crisis and grand vision. Out of the ashes of a demoralized information age, broken as it has been by the limitations of a system too complex to bring to heel, arises the Integral Age, marked by a reconstructive paradigm that can integrate truth, values and action at all levels of diversity. A reconstructive paradigm can honor what has come before - tradition, responsibility, values, and long-cultivated social norms - while also manifesting a future vision not yet realized - progressive, compassionate, liberating and boundary-expanding. UNQUOTE

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

20 January, 2009 - The Inaugural Address

I am, alas, old enough to remember the inaugural speech of John F. Kennedy, and I do believe that the speech given today by the new American President is the best one since then. While I am cynical about the chances of the new administration to successfully deal with every problem on the laundry list left by the past administration, I do think that we have elected perhaps the most bright and good-hearted man in a very long time.

I will for now assume his abortion stance (which is the main thing I am opposed to about the man as a leader)is the result of his buying into the popular pseudo-culture's doublespeak on the matter, and overlook it while I continue to pray for him. Because this speech was a home-run. It was a slam dunk, a perfect ten, and all the other metaphors you could come up with. I was overcome, in spite of my cynicism, and pray that we have indeed turned the corner toward better days and our better selves as a nation. Didn't see it? Here it is:
QUOTE My fellow citizens: I stand here today humbled by the task before us, grateful for the trust you have bestowed, mindful of the sacrifices borne by our ancestors. I thank President Bush for his service to our nation, as well as the generosity and cooperation he has shown throughout this transition.

Forty-four Americans have now taken the presidential oath. The words have been spoken during rising tides of prosperity and the still waters of peace. Yet, every so often the oath is taken amidst gathering clouds and raging storms. At these moments, America has carried on not simply because of the skill or vision of those in high office, but because We the People have remained faithful to the ideals of our forbearers, and true to our founding documents.

So it has been. So it must be with this generation of Americans. That we are in the midst of crisis is now well understood. Our nation is at war, against a far-reaching network of violence and hatred. Our economy is badly weakened, a consequence of greed and irresponsibility on the part of some, but also our collective failure to make hard choices and prepare the nation for a new age. Homes have been lost; jobs shed; businesses shuttered.
Our healthcare ...
... is too costly; our schools fail too many; and each day brings further evidence that the ways we use energy strengthen our adversaries and threaten our planet.

These are the indicators of crisis, subject to data and statistics. Less measurable but no less profound is a sapping of confidence across our land -- a nagging fear that America's decline is inevitable, and that the next generation must lower its sights.
Today I say to you that the challenges we face are real. They are serious and they are many. They will not be met easily or in a short span of time. But know this, America -- they will be met.
On this day, we gather because we have chosen hope over fear, unity of purpose over conflict and discord.

On this day, we come to proclaim an end to the petty grievances and false promises, the recriminations and worn out dogmas, that for far too long have strangled our politics.

We remain a young nation, but in the words of Scripture, the time has come to set aside childish things. The time has come to reaffirm our enduring spirit; to choose our better history; to carry forward that precious gift, that noble idea, passed on from generation to generation: the God-given promise that all are equal, all are free, and all deserve a chance to pursue their full measure of happiness.

In reaffirming the greatness of our nation, we understand that greatness is never a given. It must be earned. Our journey has never been one of shortcuts or settling for less. It has not been the path for the faint-hearted -- for those who prefer leisure over work, or seek only the pleasures of riches and fame. Rather, it has been the risk-takers, the doers, the makers of things -- some celebrated, but more often men and women obscure in their labor, who have carried us up the long, rugged path towards prosperity and freedom.

For us, they packed up their few worldly possessions and traveled across oceans in search of a new life.For us, they toiled in sweatshops and settled the West; endured the lash of the whip and plowed the hard earth.For us, they fought and died, in places like Concord and Gettysburg; Normandy and Khe Sahn.

Time and again these men and women struggled and sacrificed and worked till their hands were raw so that we might live a better life. They saw America as bigger than the sum of our individual ambitions; greater than all the differences of birth or wealth or faction.

This is the journey we continue today. We remain the most prosperous, powerful nation on Earth. Our workers are no less productive than when this crisis began. Our minds are no less inventive, our goods and services no less needed than they were last week or last month or last year. Our capacity remains undiminished. But our time of standing pat, of protecting narrow interests and putting off unpleasant decisions -- that time has surely passed. Starting today, we must pick ourselves up, dust ourselves off, and begin again the work of remaking America.

For everywhere we look, there is work to be done. The state of the economy calls for action, bold and swift, and we will act -- not only to create new jobs, but to lay a new foundation for growth. We will build the roads and bridges, the electric grids and digital lines that feed our commerce and bind us together. We will restore science to its rightful place, and wield technology's wonders to raise healthcare's quality and lower its cost. We will harness the sun and the winds and the soil to fuel our cars and run our factories. And we will transform our schools and colleges and universities to meet the demands of a new age. All this we can do. And all this we will do.

Now, there are some who question the scale of our ambitions -- who suggest that our system cannot tolerate too many big plans. Their memories are short. For they have forgotten what this country has already done; what free men and women can achieve when imagination is joined to common purpose, and necessity to courage.

What the cynics fail to understand is that the ground has shifted beneath them -- that the stale political arguments that have consumed us for so long no longer apply. The question we ask today is not whether our government is too big or too small, but whether it works -- whether it helps families find jobs at a decent wage, care they can afford, a retirement that is dignified. Where the answer is yes, we intend to move forward. Where the answer is no, programs will end. And those of us who manage the public's dollars will be held to account -- to spend wisely, reform bad habits, and do our business in the light of day -- because only then can we restore the vital trust between a people and their government.

Nor is the question before us whether the market is a force for good or ill. Its power to generate wealth and expand freedom is unmatched, but this crisis has reminded us that without a watchful eye, the market can spin out of control -- and that a nation cannot prosper long when it favors only the prosperous. The success of our economy has always depended not just on the size of our Gross Domestic Product, but on the reach of our prosperity; on our ability to extend opportunity to every willing heart -- not out of charity, but because it is the surest route to our common good.

As for our common defense, we reject as false the choice between our safety and our ideals. Our Founding Fathers, faced with perils we can scarcely imagine, drafted a charter to assure the rule of law and the rights of man, a charter expanded by the blood of generations. Those ideals still light the world, and we will not give them up for expedience's sake. And so to all other peoples and governments who are watching today, from the grandest capitals to the small village where my father was born: know that America is a friend of each nation and every man, woman, and child who seeks a future of peace and dignity, and that we are ready to lead once more.

Recall that earlier generations faced down fascism and communism not just with missiles and tanks, but with sturdy alliances and enduring convictions. They understood that our power alone cannot protect us, nor does it entitle us to do as we please. Instead, they knew that our power grows through its prudent use; our security emanates from the justness of our cause, the force of our example, the tempering qualities of humility and restraint.

We are the keepers of this legacy. Guided by these principles once more, we can meet those new threats that demand even greater effort -- even greater cooperation and understanding between nations. We will begin to responsibly leave Iraq to its people, and forge a hard-earned peace in Afghanistan. With old friends and former foes, we will work tirelessly to lessen the nuclear threat, and roll back the specter of a warming planet. We will not apologize for our way of life, nor will we waver in its defense, and for those who seek to advance their aims by inducing terror and slaughtering innocents, we say to you now that our spirit is stronger and cannot be broken; you cannot outlast us, and we will defeat you.

For we know that our patchwork heritage is a strength, not a weakness. We are a nation of Christians and Muslims, Jews and Hindus -- and non-believers. We are shaped by every language and culture, drawn from every end of this Earth; and because we have tasted the bitter swill of civil war and segregation, and emerged from that dark chapter stronger and more united, we cannot help but believe that the old hatreds shall someday pass; that the lines of tribe shall soon dissolve; that as the world grows smaller, our common humanity shall reveal itself; and that America must play its role in ushering in a new era of peace.

To the Muslim world, we seek a new way forward, based on mutual interest and mutual respect. To those leaders around the globe who seek to sow conflict, or blame their society's ills on the West -- know that your people will judge you on what you can build, not what you destroy. To those who cling to power through corruption and deceit and the silencing of dissent, know that you are on the wrong side of history; but that we will extend a hand if you are willing to unclench your fist.

To the people of poor nations, we pledge to work alongside you to make your farms flourish and let clean waters flow; to nourish starved bodies and feed hungry minds. And to those nations like ours that enjoy relative plenty, we say we can no longer afford indifference to suffering outside our borders; nor can we consume the world's resources without regard to effect. For the world has changed, and we must change with it.

As we consider the road that unfolds before us, we remember with humble gratitude those brave Americans who, at this very hour, patrol far-off deserts and distant mountains. They have something to tell us today, just as the fallen heroes who lie in Arlington whisper through the ages. We honor them not only because they are guardians of our liberty, but because they embody the spirit of service; a willingness to find meaning in something greater than themselves. And yet, at this moment -- a moment that will define a generation -- it is precisely this spirit that must inhabit us all.

For as much as government can do and must do, it is ultimately the faith and determination of the American people upon which this nation relies. It is the kindness to take in a stranger when the levees break, the selflessness of workers who would rather cut their hours than see a friend lose their job, which sees us through our darkest hours. It is the firefighter's courage to storm a stairway filled with smoke, but also a parent's willingness to nurture a child, that finally decides our fate.

Our challenges may be new. The instruments with which we meet them may be new. But those values upon which our success depends -- hard work and honesty, courage and fair play, tolerance and curiosity, loyalty and patriotism -- these things are old. These things are true. They have been the quiet force of progress throughout our history. What is demanded then is a return to these truths. What is required of us now is a new era of responsibility -- a recognition, on the part of every American, that we have duties to ourselves, our nation, and the world, duties that we do not grudgingly accept but rather seize gladly, firm in the knowledge that there is nothing so satisfying to the spirit, so defining of our character, than giving our all to a difficult task.

This is the price and the promise of citizenship.This is the source of our confidence -- the knowledge that God calls on us to shape an uncertain destiny.

This is the meaning of our liberty and our creed -- why men and women and children of every race and every faith can join in celebration across this magnificent mall, and why a man whose father less than 60 years ago might not have been served at a local restaurant can now stand before you to take a most sacred oath.

So let us mark this day with remembrance, of who we are and how far we have traveled. In the year of America's birth, in the coldest of months, a small band of patriots huddled by dying campfires on the shores of an icy river. The capital was abandoned. The enemy was advancing. The snow was stained with blood. At a moment when the outcome of our revolution was most in doubt, the father of our nation ordered these words be read to the people:

"Let it be told to the future world ... that in the depth of winter, when nothing but hope and virtue could survive ... that the city and the country, alarmed at one common danger, came forth to meet [it]."

America. In the face of our common dangers, in this winter of our hardship, let us remember these timeless words. With hope and virtue, let us brave once more the icy currents, and endure what storms may come.

Let it be said by our children's children that when we were tested we refused to let this journey end, that we did not turn back, nor did we falter; and with eyes fixed on the horizon and God's grace upon us, we carried forth that great gift of freedom and delivered it safely to future generations.
-- Barack H. Obama. UNQUOTE

Monday, January 19, 2009

Congratulations to Barack Obama

Our heartfelt congratulations to President Barack Obama and his family from The Rosemary Tree upon the historic occasion of his inauguration into the Presidency of the United States of America.

May these words of the founding father, John Adams, guide your path:

If we do not lay out ourselves in the service of mankind whom should we serve? ~ John Adams
Dear President Obama,

If I were to given you a bit of advice it is this: listen to the voiceless, and then give them a voice, and listen to the wise, and heed the sage above the merely powerful and influential. Soften your heart on the abortion cause and awaken to the fact that women are abused more by this purported "right" than by all else combined. Insist that light rail and alternative energy are at the forefront of domestic policy, and stand up to the warmongers and the prison builders.

Have fun with your family and don't forget to play while you and your administration tackle the pile of troubles that assail us.

Best wishes,

Deborah Yost
The Rosemary Tree

obama Pictures, Images and Photos
art credit: margie1p

MLK Day 2009

Have a great day today, and get ready for the new day tomorrow. Peace, my brothers and sisters.

Sunday, January 18, 2009

A History Of Medicine

Hat tip to Gabriel.

"Doctor, I have an ear ache & a fever."

2000 B.C."Here, eat this root."
1000 B.C. - "That root is heathen, say this prayer."
1850 A.D. - "That prayer is superstition, drink this potion."
1940 A.D. - "That potion is snake oil, swallow this pill."
1985 A.D. - "That pill is ineffective, take this antibiotic."
2009 A.D. - "That antibiotic is artificial. Here, eat this root!"

Saturday, January 17, 2009

GF Rice Krispie Treats

Today I'm making a gluten-free version of the old fave dessert bar, Rice Krispie Treats. It's simple ~ just substitute Rice Chex for the krispies and voila !! a GF version. Of course, they could easily make the rice krispies without gluten, which would also solve the problem. ;D

I Love my Rice Krispie treats Pictures, Images and Photos

Vatican Is Getting a YouTube Channel

W00T! Uber cool.

VATICAN CITY (Reuters) - The Vatican will soon have its own channel on the video sharing site YouTube where the Catholic faithful or the curious will be able to see Pope Benedict or Church events, a Vatican source said on Saturday.

Papa Benedict praying. Pictures, Images and Photos

Like A Fox

I have come to the conclusion that my inner scribe is crazy ~ but with the caveat ~ crazy like a fox. My muse definately knows more about blogging than I do.

I have made peace with being a blogger who has thus far attracted a limited amount of interest from the worldwide scrum of bloggers both large and small, paid and volunteer. I have come to the realization that blogging is itself the reward, not attention, certainly not income and not any sort of warm fuzzies or compliments from the great readership which lurks, like a mother ship in a sci-fi movie, slightly above and out of sight but always there, you just know it is.

Anyhow today's salute to the great hovering scintillating breathing living blogosphere, and to blogging as a spiritual tool for those on a spiritual journey (basically all of us whether we know it or not IMO) is my attempt at freeing my muse, making an end run around my inner censor and my rational mind and just letting it roll. It has been said that blogging as an attempt at both transparency and inclusion, and that it makes the world a more honest and warmer place.

Maybe this web log will get more interesting, I think it shall. Oh, and btw, and fellow-blogger, Gabriel: Gabriel, where art thou, my friend? Come out and play on The Rosemary Tree.
computer lady Pictures, Images and Photos
art credit: Juliett5548


Friday, January 16, 2009

Hepburn's Great Peace Speech

Kate the great delivering a few choice words to her character's sons (Eleanor of Aquitane in The Lion in Winter, a wonderful old film) on the prospect of peace and the origin of wars.

Prince Richard: A knife! He's got a knife!!

Eleanor of Aquitaine: Of course he has a knife. He's always has a knife. We all have knives. It's 1183 and we're barbarians. How clear we make it.

Oh, my piglets, we are the origins of war -- not history's forces, nor the times, nor justice, nor the lack of it, nor causes, nor religions, nor ideas, nor kinds of government, nor any other thing.

We are the killers.

We breed wars.

We carry it like syphilis inside. Dead bodies rot in field and stream because the living ones are rotten.

For the love of God can't we love one another just a little?

That's how peace begins.

We have so much to love each other for.

We have such possibilities, my children.

We could change the world.


Thursday, January 15, 2009

Paris Rendezvous

A French Three Kings Day children's song

J'aime la galette,
Savez-vous comment ?
Quand elle bien faite
Avec du beurre dedans.
Trala la la la la la la lère,Tra la la la la la la la la
I love cake,
Do you know how?
When it's made well,
With butter inside!Tra la la la la la la la lère,
Tra la la la la la la

Brahms Symphony No.3


Chapel Veils

I have just reread a great article on the Theology of the Chapel Veil and am linking to it since we had a spate of interest in this topic a few months ago.

I am never weary of visiting my neighborhood Novus Ordo parish with head covered and skirts on, since the obvious discomfort of many parishioners at my appearance hints that such witness to Mother's Church's historical standard is both needed and will eventually be effective in persuading some to try it themselves.

UN Headquarters in Gaza Hit By Phosphorus Bombs

From The Times online

QUOTE Chris Gunness, a UNRWA spokesman, said that the building had been used to shelter hundreds of people fleeing Israel’s 20-day offensive in Gaza. He said that pallets with supplies desperately needed by Palestinians in Gaza were on fire.
"What more stark symbolism do you need?" he said. "You can’t put out white phosphorus with traditional methods such as fire extinguishers. You need sand, we don’t have sand."
The Israeli military has denied using white phosphorus shells in the Gaza offensive, although an investigation by The Times has revealed that dozens of Palestinians in Gaza have sustained serious injuries from the substance, which burns at extremely high temperatures.
The Geneva Convention of 1980 proscribes the use of white phosphorus as a weapon of war in civilian areas, although it can be used to create a smokescreen. The Israel Defence Forces (IDF) said today that all weapons used in Gaza were "within the scope of international law".

If these atrocities were carried out by any other middle eastern country there would be sanctions and possibly military intervention. Saddam stepped over the line in Kuwait and look what he got. The international inaction on this matter reveals something cloaked and sinister in western democracy. Racism, apartheid and a tolerance for genocide.

- related story -

From The Toronto Star
Good for the Canadian Jewish ladies who occupied the Israeli consulate in Toronto last week, bringing some attention to the fact that many American and Canadian Jews disagree with Israel's policy vehemently.

QUOTE Eight Jewish Canadian women who were arrested while holding a protest inside the Israeli consulate have been released.

The RCMP arrested and handcuffed the women, who were staging a sit-in protest against the ongoing Israeli assault on Gaza inside the consulate at 180 Bloor St. W. The women were held briefly inside a paddy wagon, but were not charged and were released.

Included in the group were Israeli peace activists, filmmakers, the president of Science for Peace and a variety of students.

"Israel purports to represent all Jews worldwide and these atrocities are not being committed in our name," said spokesperson and filmmaker Cathy Gulkin, standing outside of the consulate. UNQUOTE

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

Tuesday Song of the Day

Debussy's Clair de Lune

Tuesday Picture of the Day

Sunday Tea Time by Stephen Darbishire

Recovering Evangelicals Welcome Here :D

I have recently stumbled across the website Recovering Evangelical. I congratulate you on your growth and healing, and I remind my Protestant brethren that the Catholic Church has apostolic succession, going all the way back to the twelve Apostles, and has kept the torch of biblical truth lit through the centuries. I mean, who sends missionaries to Copenhagen, Denmark? Nobody except the evangelicals have the chutzpah to write every single person they ever met four times a year and beg for money, not for schools or clinics or even missions in third and fourth world countries, but for themselves. So they can "go on mission" to a rich, white, Christian nation. Holy mackinolee.

Here's a great challenge quiz for all Christians not in union with the Catholic Church to take ~ from FishEater's.com.

"Where the Bishop is, there let the multitude of believers be; even as where Jesus is, there is the Catholic Church''
- Ignatius of Antioch, 1st c. A.D

Pope Benedict and Patriarch Bartholomew recite the Creed in unision, and Bartholomew's homily from the Pope's visit to Constantinople in 2006. Here's to the "ONE holy, Catholic and apostolic Church".
Hat tip to The Byzantine Rambler.

Monday, January 12, 2009

Superior Scribblers

My thanks to The Byzantine Rambler at Byzantine Ramblings for bestowing unto me a Superior Scribbler Award. I am in turn obliged to pick five bloggers of my own to proffer - understanding my solemn responsibility - the same accolade and provide the rules for them to follow:
Each Superior Scribbler must in turn pass the award on to 5 most-deserving Bloggy Friends.
Each Superior Scribbler must link to the author and the name of the blog from whom he/she has received the Award.
Each Superior Scribbler must display the award on his/her blog, and link to this post, which explains the award.
Each Blogger who wins the Superior Scribbler Award must visit this post and add his/her name to the Mr. Linky List (scroll down). That way, we’ll be able to keep up-to-date on everyone who receives this prestigious honor!
Each Superior Scribbler must post these rules on his/her blog.

I now dub thee, Superior Scribblers!



Sunday, January 11, 2009

100,000+ March in Spain to Protest Gaza Attacks

Why is the disturbing pattern of humans who have been abused and victimized to, when given power over others, replicate their abuser's habits,asserting itself here? Israel of all nations should be wary of turning a ghetto into a concentration camp and letting bloodlust against a racial group guide their war policy.

From the Associated Press

QUOTE MADRID, Spain: More than 100,000 people marched through Spain's capital and other cities Sunday calling for Israel to announce an immediate cease-fire in Gaza.
The protest in Madrid was the largest of demonstrations across Europe expressing both support and opposition for the Israeli offensive in Gaza.
Protesters filled downtown boulevards carrying banners saying "Peace," "SOS Gaza," placards with the word "Gaza" above a red-stained hand and mock blood-spattered bodies of children.
Oscar-winning actor Javier Bardem's mother Pilar, also an actress, was among speakers who addressed the crowd.
"The Spanish government has to do something. The Gaza Strip is now practically a concentration camp," she said.

Friday, January 9, 2009

Taste and See That the Lord is Good

blessing the koliva, photo credit: Wikipedia

Dear Friends of the Melkite Mission of Lincoln NE,

We are pleased to announce that Fr. Daniel Lenz will be offering the Divine Liturgy for the continuation of our services this Sunday at

St. George Ukrainian Catholic Church, 3330 North 13th Street, Lincoln.

The schedule is as follows:

1/11/09 Sunday

9:30 AM Morning Prayer

10:00 AM Divine Liturgy followed by a potluck meal.

Fr. Daniel will be available for Holy Confession before the Divine Liturgy.

Please pass this message on to whomever you think might be interested.

I will be making koliva tomorrow (1/10/09) for the memorial service for any deceased loved ones you may wish to commemorate. Please see Father Lenz or Sebastian Carnazzo with your names to be commemorated.

In Christ,



Useful and Practical Doom

From ExRanger's blog, WTF!, comes some advice on what do do when you realize you are, as the Irish say, fecked. Be sure and scroll down to read part one also. Practical Doom 101. Good stuff.

QUOTE I have been reading a lot of Blogs, in particular the comments sections, for the last few months. Most of the time there are regular contributors that you recognise after a while, a bunch of anonymous people, the truly weird ones and ever so often, the person who has just realized that they are totally screwed. The usual response of these poor people is wide eyed, deer in the headlights panic. For those people, here is some advise. (sic)

Sit down, close your eyes, take a deep breath and exhale very slowly. You are going to get through this some how and your mind set in approaching the problem could make all the difference.First off, take stock of your situation. Are you warm, dry and not in imediate danger. Do you have access to food and water. Good. Next get some paper and a pencil and list the assets and debits of your situation in detail. Have you lost your job or about to loose your job? Do you have savings? How much debt? Do you have shelter or are you about to loose it? Do you have friends or relatives you can move in with for the time being? What skills do you have? Do you have any time before your situation gets dire to learn new skills? UNQUOTE

Friday Music Time

Dedicated to those who got bumped off the Lindley and Hamilton family tree (and all other family trees for that matter) because they were from the First Nations to inhabit this land, and to those who get bumped from The Rez because they looked too white.

Mitakuye Oyasin! All my relations! Have fun listening to the music...

~ (Deborah, an American of German, Irish, Scottish, English, Nez Perce and Yakama extraction.)

"The Gipper Was a Peace Conservative"

I saw Peggy Noonan's appearance on MSNBC's Morning Joe show today, and she was wonderful. A gracious lady, and a brilliant one, and a true conservative.

It is interesting to see Scarborough confusing a true conservative's love of peace with utopianism.

Be sure and watch, it really is a must-see.

Thursday, January 8, 2009

Vatican Calls Gaza a "Concentration Camp"

OK, that's quite unambiguous. To the point. And both sides are called to end all attacks. And I am amused that people are shocked at this stance. C'mon, people, the Vatican is for peace. Peace for all peoples. It's what they do.

You know, they represent a fellow who has been known for 2000+ years as the "Prince of Peace"...

From AntiWar.com

QUOTE Echoing Pope Benedict XVI’s repeated calls to end the ongoing bloodshed in the Gaza Strip, Vatican Justice and Peace Minister Cardinal Renato Martino urged both the Israeli government and Hamas to show more willingness toward peace talks and for the world to help them come an agreement that would end the ongoing Israeli invasion.
He also expressed concerns about the dire humanitarian situation in the Gaza Strip, saying “let’s look at the conditions in Gaza: these increasingly resemble a big concentration camp.”

Tuesday, January 6, 2009

Hooray For Roundbouts!

Any readers who happen to stray in to TRT from the Auld Sod, aka The Continent, will think I have gone round the bend, but I am happy to announce that Lincoln, Nebraska is getting a new roundabout! I am a big fan of the nonconventional traffic control patterns mainly because they are so simple that even if a tornado or blizzard whips through town and douses the electricity for hours or days, they, unlike trafic lights, still work just fine without any traffic cops. This will be our first roundabout big enough to handle 18-wheelers.
connswater roundabout Pictures, Images and Photos art credit: bigbadleo

The Unvarnished Truth

Without further ado, please go read the golden Greek, Taki Theodoracopulos' sizing up of the situation in Gaza. The unvarnished truth.

QUOTE So where is Obama on this one? I’ll tell you where—trying to stay out of the way of AIPAC and the Israel lobby that dictates American foreign policy in the Middle East.
I’ve never been a friend of Islam; however, it’s always been perfectly clear to me that the Israelis are the ones sowing terror and the Palestinians are the ones besieged. The American people have been so brainwashed, they have it the other way round.

Monday, January 5, 2009

Old Knowledge Database

I just happened across an amazing online list of archaic but useful knowledge. It is HUGE and includes everything from land surveying to dyeing cloth to manufacture of bricks to how to fish to mushroom collecting. Wow.
Thanks to Midwest Herbalist for putting the links up.

Whole Earth Catalog Is Online

I don't know how many TRT readers were Whole Earth Catalog aficionados "back in the day", but I have just found out it is up online. Tools, hippie-in-mountains stuff, crafts stuff, garden stuff,communications, shelter, land uses ~ neat stuff.

QUOTE In 1968 Stewart Brand launched an innovative publication called The Whole Earth Catalog.It was groundbreaking, enlightening, and spawned a group of later publications.
The collection of that work provided on this site is not complete — and probably never will be — but it is a gift to readers who loved the CATALOG and those who are discovering it for the first time.

whole earth catalog Pictures, Images and Photos

Saturday, January 3, 2009

Will the Circle Be Unbroken

Have a great Sunday!

Going By the Book

Gaza, Iraq, Afghanistan and 2nd Great Depression all summed up by the Man in Black.

Too Many Saviours

The Irish actor and (bad) singer, Richard Harris, wrote and recited this poem on British and Irish radio during "the Troubles" in Northern Ireland around 1969.

He speaks in the voice of Jesus, indicting and condemning and cursing all of those on BOTH sides of Northern Ireland's civil war who pretended it was a "religious" war, with Christ on "their side".

It is equally applicable to all "religious" wars, and in fact to all wars, because all wars are really fratricidal, but especially putatively "religious" wars.The current events in Gaza reminded me of this: http://au.youtube.com/watch?v=thlszLrDjOM

Odds and Ends

We have been either sick or fighting viruses and "bugs" of unknown description here at the old Yost homestead lately. I apologize for the dearth of postings and only hope that any followers of this little blog have hung in there. I know sometimes it gets boring around here, but, hey, that's life. I do encourage all readers to use the "comments" section since the dialog would be better with more voices in it! We're gradually getting better, so hopefully more postings are on the way.
I was saddened to discover that my dear friend and spiritual father, Monsignor David Hintz (of Saint Patrick's here in Lincoln, Nebraska) suffered a stroke on Christmas Eve and is recovering at home after a few days in hospital. Please include him in your prayers and intentions. He is quite young and a very wonderful pastor, humble, full of good cheer, kind and brilliant. It isn't every day that that combination of qualities is found in anyone, much less a "prince of The Church." Get well soon, Monsignor!!
Rosary Pictures, Images and Photos
With the holidays more or less behind us, its time to turn our attention to the next big one - and I do mean Saint Patrick's Day- We haven't seen the Wild Clover Band for about a year, so its time to make the short trip to the Big O and rendezvous with them at the Brazen Head. Craic for all! Also, you will find me tending bar at St. Pat's Irish Festival again this year. And God only knows what other committees I will wind up on.
omaha Pictures, Images and Photos
Omaha, NE

Thursday, January 1, 2009

2009 Aspirations

+ In the Name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit. Amen.
+ O Heavenly King, Comforter, Spirit of Truth, Who art everywhere present and fillest all things, Treasury of good gifts and Giver of Life, come and abide in us, and cleanse our souls, Oh Good One.
+ May I be well. May I be happy. May I be free from suffering and sin.
May my friends be well. May my friends be happy. May my friends be free from suffering and sin.
May those I do not know personally be well. May those I do not know personally be happy. May those that I do not know personally be free from suffering and sin.
May those I’ve thought to be enemies be well. May those I’ve thought to be enemies be happy. May those I’ve thought to be enemies be free from suffering and sin.
May all sentient beings everywhere be well. May all sentient beings everywhere be happy. May all sentient beings everywhere be free from suffering and sin.
I pray to be made compassionate. I pray to be made kind. I pray to be made patient. I pray to be made loving. I pray to be made caring. I pray to be made helpful to others.
+ In the Name of Christ Jesus Our Lord.

All Through the Night

From Eric Parks at Red State Eclectic, comes a lovely Welsh hymn to ring in the new year. Enjoy. It is so peaceful.