View from the choir

I am a Catholic layperson and Secular Franciscan with a sense of humor. After years in the back pew watching, I have moved into the choir. It's nice to see faces instead of the backs of heads. But I still maintain God has a sense of humor - and that we are created in God's image.

Thursday, July 31, 2008

Saint Song

This song gave me a chuckle:

St. Padre Pio and Brother Bee

As I traveled about yesterday doing errands and visiting my father, I stopped as I like to do at the St. Padre Pio Chapel in Gates (a suburb of Rochester).

There was one car in the parking lot. When I went into the chapel though, no one was there. I sat in a back pew listening to the birds outside, saying a few prayers and doing some spiritual reading. This chapel dedicated to that good Italian Capuchin has become a treasured place of peace and prayer for me here in Rochester.

After a while, I heard some rumbling. At first I thought maybe the person in the car I had seen was in the basement moving something. The rumbling came again. Moving something? Or thunder?

Sure enough, it started to rain. The rain grew heavier, striking the roof, echoing throughout the chapel. I listened to the sound and looked out the windows at the rain, thanking God for the beauty of the moment. Finally I went over to one of the windows to look outside.

As I looked at the fields, my attention was suddenly drawn to the motion on the outside frame of the window. A bee was there, moving in from the rain, and then holding tight to the frame.

He and I were both finding a moment of peace thanks to the chapel.

Summer thunderstorm -
Franciscan chapel shelters
Brother Bee and me

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Abortionists lie?

"We claimed that between five and ten thousand women a year died of botched abortions. The actual figure was closer to 200 to 300 and we also claimed that there were a million illegal abortions a year in the United States and the actual figure was close to 200,000. So, we were guilty of massive deception."

"One of the myths that was fed to the public through the media was that legalizing abortion would only mean that abortions taking place illegally, would be done legally. But in fact, abortion is now being used primarily as a method of birth control all over the world and in the USA. too."~

-- Former Abortionist Bernard Nathanson, On July 9, 2008, in an interview with CFRB talk show host, Spider Jones

(Thanks to Jean at Catholic Fire -

Wednesday, July 30, 2008

Reading and Writing

Life goes in cycles. So, too, does spirituality for me.

I have been thinking of St. Francis of Assisi lately. I've always considered him my patron saint (Lee Francis Joseph Strong). My oldest daughter is named Clare. It was through his biography of St. Francis that I discovered Chesterton. When I considered the priesthood, the Franciscans were one congregation I thought about.

Feeling spiritually hungry, I looked at my bookcases and spotted some of the books I have about St. Francis. I grabbed The Way of St. Francis by Father Murray Bodo, OFM. I've never read it before, even though it's been on the bookshelf for years. I am enjoying it.

Thinking of St. Francis has also got me thinking about the Secular Franciscan Order again. There are two local fraternities. I visited one a couple of decades ago, but it didn't click at that time, and the meeting times did not work in my schedule at the time (working two jobs and starting a family). Now that the diaconate is not an option and my life has gotten simpler in terms of work and family obligations, I've begun to think of the SFO once as a place for community and growth.


On the writing front, "Swedenborg" is now over 28,500 words long. Still on track for my 35,000 words goal before the summer ends.

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"Give me that old time humor ... "

A rabbi, a priest and a minister walk into a bar.
The bartender looks up and says, "What is this, a joke?"


Tuesday, July 29, 2008

A St. Francis Prayer

We adore You, Lord Jesus Christ, in all your churches throughout the world, and we bless You, for through Your holy cross You have redeemed the world. ( St. Francis of Assisi, The Testament)

Monday, July 28, 2008

St. Francis and haiku

Given his love of nature, his simplicity, his poetic nature, and his mysticism, I wonder if St. Francis of Assisi would have appreciated or even written haiku.

Of course, haiku was not developed until long after he was dead. The form would certainly seem to lend itself to Franciscan spirituality. Adele Kenny, a member of the Secular Franciscan Order, wrote this one:

April snow-
the lightness of the Host
in my hand

(published in Frogpond, No. 3, 1998)

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Old poems rediscovered

Jesus called a thief
to be among his chosen
-there is hope

--Lee Strong

Back on June 16, The Ironic Catholic ( used that old haiku/senryu of mine as an example of the kind of entry to send in for the 2008 edition of the The Ironic Catholic Poetry Contests (the poem was from 2006). I only stumbled across it now, so I could not bask in the glory at the time, and I also missed this year's contest deadline. (Sin of omission - or lack of submission?)

While cleaning some papers upstairs I also came across an old issue of City, a local newspaper I worked for back when I was a semi-serious journalist. The poems, written after I'd left the paper to return to the greener pastures of teaching, were topical in nature:

The truth about white-collar crime
is offenders will rarely do time.
They're in bed, you see,
with the powers that be,
who'd turn a blind eye for a dime.

Please don't call them corporate crooks
because it is not as it looks.
After working each deal,
it's hunger they'd feel,
and that is why they cooked the books.

Ah, old poems, like old friends.


Sunday, July 27, 2008

The Super Vatican Unofficials - revised

I have removed the original post. Here's why:

I went to my site meter this morning, and noticed there was a sudden spike in page views in July - more than 1,400. That's my second highest total in the last year (1,800 plus last December).

It's due, I suspect, to the recent interest generated by (this) piece (that was) critical of some of the "Super Vatican Unofficials."

I'm sure that traffic will die soon. Good. It saddens me. The piece was written in a pique, and, as I've always acknowledged, my mouth (or my typing fingers) are my own worst enemies.

On rereading the piece, I can see how it might be taken as critical of traditionalists - especially the comment about the wearers of medals, scapulars and hair shirts. The hair shirts was the real point of that line - building from two normal things to something that's absurd. After all, I wear a scapular, and in the past have worn medals and crosses. But still, some folks might see that line and feel slighted or offended. Sorry.

I have nothing against traditionalists. Given my beliefs and actions, I could easily be taken for one. How many people do you know who go to shrines on their anniversaries?! Or hang out in chapels? Or read theology and spiritual books on their summer vacations? Or blog about G. K. Chesterton?

The target of the post was the nit pickers and the people who seem so full of anger and hurt.

Ahh, but there's that word "target." Am I any better?

Rather than trying to argue, or trying to tweak them, I should be praying for them, asking their prayers for me, and seeking reconciliation.

And asking their forgiveness.

Sarcasm is not the way to promote dialogue, or to foster Christian community.

I need to keep in mind the model set by St. Francis.

Saturday, July 26, 2008

I wanted to like it

I took the lassies to see the new X Files movie - I Want to Believe.

With Emily heading back to school, and Bridget and Clare launched off into their lives, it may be a while before the three of them, the good-looking-wife, and I all can do something together like this.

I wish it could have been a better "last time" - in terms of being together, and perhaps for the X Files, a show we used to like.

The movie wasn't terrible, it just wasn't that good. It had some obvious plot holes that taxed even the suspension of disbelief required for the X Files anyway. It was dark and depressing. Scully's character is joyless - even with the silly tag-on during the credits.

Faith wise, we have a pedophile psychic former priest, a priest in charge of a hospital (Mother of Sorrows??!) who seemed uncaring and given the nature of the other priest seems unnecessarily ominous. Oh, and Dr. Scully is using stem cells to treat a patient in a Catholic hospital with no explanation of what kind of stem cells - or even discussion by the staff that obviously includes nuns in habits and priests in collars. By the way, is the kid the only patient Scully has?? (One of the plot holes.)

Plus, the movie is a stand alone. Some of the loose ends left over from the show's end remain unresolved. If you weren't a fan of the show and didn't know, okay. But for someone like me, I wanted to have them at least acknowledged. Maybe mention of some of the characters (beyond the one character who mysteriously shows up later to help save the day). And I missed the humor that sometimes popped up in the show.

If you were a fan of the show, you may want to see it for the sake of seeing it. Otherwise, well, if you have nothing to do, you've already seen The Dark Knight, and you can't stomach the idea of seeing Step Brothers, give it a shot.

The Strong family vote: 4 ehs, one thumbs down (the good-looking-one).

Insincerely yours

The local newspaper had a mini poetry contest. I lost - though one of my poems did get mentioned in passing.

The contest called for parodies of the famous William Carlos Williams poem:

This is just to say

I have eaten
the plums
that were in
the icebox

and which
you were probably
for breakfast

Forgive me
they were delicious
so sweet
and so cold

My three entries were:

This is just to say

Your cat
really didn’t
run away
last week.

he was using
my guitar case
as a litter box

and I
…well …
don’t look
in the flower bed.

This is just to say

I took
the money
you had
in your sock drawer

I know
you were saving
it for
plastic surgery

my sure thing
in the fifth race
lost by a nose

This is just to say

I didn’t mail
the contest poem
you asked
me to mail

I know
you had high hopes
it would win
and bring you fame

but I had one stamp left
the mortgage was due
and poetry
doesn’t pay the bills


Friday, July 25, 2008

Redability level

At another blog I stumbled across a tool to gauge a blog's readability level (

This humble blog came out as Elementary. Hmm. Hopefully, the U of R won't now revoke my M.A. in literature.

My guess is that due to my journalism background, I tend to keep the language and the sentences simpler in my posts. The aim then was to write for the typical eighth grader, which, we were told was the average reading level of genus Americanus.

Still, my ego is offended. Couldn't I have at least have registered as High School?

Maybe I need to get out my thesaurus and substitute some longer, more obscure words in lengthier, more complex sentences; perhaps a semicolon or two might help to raise the level of complexity and therein elevate my score.

Nah. After writing like that I'm tempted to use some toilet paper.

Baba Dada

I continue my silly game over at the newspaper blogs.

Our local newspaper offers blogs. They do give people an opportunity to spout, though they are really just a way to get people to the newspaper's site to read the content and see the ads. Newspapers have to figure out some way to survive.

Most of the blogs are little read, and, to be honest are dreadful. Some are written by sincere folks who do indeed want to share or express their thoughts and feelings. (I have no problems with them.) Sometimes, though, they are places for the barely literate and the sons and daughters of Savage and Limbaugh to spew. Still others are intended to promote some business or organization. Free ads.

So I started posting words of "wisdom" from Baba Dada. Sometimes the sayings or stories make sense. Sometimes, there are silly. Sometimes they are Dada in nature. (Dada was an art and literary movement that, to be simple, offered satire, nonsense and the irrational in the face of the horrors the rational world was serving up at the time of WW I. The aim was to mock and shock and rebel. Saner souls "rebelled" by turning to faith, as, for example, did G. K. Chesterton, or even one of the Dada leaders, Hugo Ball.)

Here's a few of the more recent sayings of Baba Dada.

Unrestrained freedom is a prison.

The worker deserves his wages - and a coffee break.

When you really consider my words you will realize I have nothing to say.

Acknowledging virtue means denying popular delusions.

For the partisan, truth is negotiable.

Your underwear is fourth dimensional.

Fornicators are unfaithful to themselves.

Nourish your soul and you will never die.

Keep an eye on the man who picks his toes in public indifference.

Translation is the uncle of the essential.

Never underestimate the power of repeated ovine ignorance.

Never engage in a pregnant circle dance with a knowing man.

We cling to shadows to avoid loneliness.

That which is the most private is often the most universal.

It might seem irrational for a rational person to attempt rational discussion with an irrational person, but such irrational rational discussion might make the irrational rational.

Even the enlightened soul sometimes needs a flashlight.


Novel update

I keep plugging away at "Swedenborg." Up over 27,000 words at this point. Some of those words might actually be okay.

I am in the midst of the vision scene at the wicca's house. I'm not satisfied with it yet; it needs more fleshing out. But at least I have it on paper (on in a computer file anyway).

Still don't know what the title will be. Something related to dead souls? Shadows. Soul parasites?

But at least I'm getting closer to my goal of 35,000 for the summer. If I keep up my current pace, I might hit that in the next two to three weeks.

Thursday, July 24, 2008

Old posts, new comments

One of the interesting things about blogging for a few years is that the earlier posts are still out there, and people still read and comment on them.

In the last couple of weeks people have posted on things I wrote three years ago on music, the Trinity, and diversity. I'd even forgotten I'd written those posts.

What's the protocol - go back and comment there? Hmm.

And maybe I should go back some time to read what I've written just so I'll remember.


In writing to an old friend, I began thinking about the fact that I currently have no real friends here in Rochester. Coworkers. Acquaintances. But not friends.

Now part of that is a function of the fact that I am kind of reserved by nature. A loner. My dream of heaven is a cottage by the sea with just me. And my dog. Jesus would stop by for coffee. Otherwise, sea and sand and sun, circling birds, the dog sitting at my feet, and me.


In addition, I've been raising three daughters and taking care of elderly parents and a grandmother.

I've also had the excuse of working so much. At one point, I was working seven days a week to pay the bills. I've been known to have one full time and three part time jobs at the same time.

But that's lame.

Besides, man is a social animal, and I am open to charges of being antisocial.

So I called an acquaintance and invited him to lunch. It was a start. I'll try to meet up with another acquaintance next week.

You never know.

Wednesday, July 23, 2008

Obama and Planned Parenthood

We know where he stands.
And where they stand.

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

The Dark Knight

Yes, while waiting for the new X Files movie (with hopes that it will be better than the first), I became part of the record and saw The Dark Knight over the weekend.

I don't give it a thumbs up. I give it two thumbs and two big toes up.

It was well-acted, well-scripted: Not your typical superficial superhero special effects extravaganza. There is a moral complexity to this film as well. Even good characters have to make decisions, and they don't always do what we would expect or what in a pure world would be considered the "right" decision.

Heath Ledger does indeed give an incredible performance at the Joker. Dark, crazy, unpredictable. He is not merely an evil character, he is Evil itself. Worthy of Oscar buzz (I haven't seen enough films this year to say definitely worthy of a nomination).

Gary Oldman is also a stand out in the cast, and Michael Caine and Morgan Freemen provide their usual quality turns. Bale as Batman is better than Keaton, Kilmer or Clooney were.

Caution: This movie is intense and long, and there are some grisly, disturbing moments. DO NOT take younger kids or squeamish friends.

Monday, July 21, 2008

Novel update (if anyone cares!)

I wrote more on the novel this morning. I'm up over 25,000 words.

As I go along, the story evolves, so we are only up to the Witch's house - literally standing at her front door in the section I just wrote. I had thought I would get there last week!

I still haven't resolved the qualms I have about some of the more graphic sections. When I am done with the first draft, I may still revise those sections.

In addition, the notion of seeing spirits is developing. Seeing the "dead" and demons - and possibly angels? Hmm. Have to think about that.

About 10,000 more words until I get to this summer's goals.

Padre Pio Chapel benefit

I love going out to the new Padre Pio Chapel here in the Diocese of Rochester. It's a quiet place to pray and reflect.

Now, it is providing a potential benefit for my wife's family.

One of my wife's aunts had left the Catholic Church years ago. She later joined a very active Protestant church. She recently died, was cremated, and her cremains divided among family members. No Catholic burial. No interment. No grave.

Her siblings and other relatives who have remained Catholic are grieving for her, and for not having a place to go to honor and remember her according to their traditions.

The Padre Pio Chapel has a "Tree of Life." On it there are leaves with names engraved on them - individuals, couples, families.

My wife's family is now considering buying a leaf in the aunt's memory to help support the Chapel, and to give them a place to go to remember her and pray for her soul.

I hope this comes true.

I'm grateful for the Chapel being there, and for the Diocese of Rochester giving its blessing to this private effort (the Chancellor of the Diocese is even on the board that oversees the Chapel).

Sunday, July 20, 2008

Fr. Pacwa II

Imagine my delight when I went to Mass this morning and Father Pacwa was the celebrant and homilist.

His homily challenged us all to get out and evangelize - to be leaven in the world, to be the good seed producing wheat.

Nice job. Thank you.

Isn't it great that he felt welcomed in the Diocese of Rochester to speak at two different parishes?

Gay Pride Parade

It was Gay Pride Parade time here in Rochester.

It is sad that elements in our society celebrate a disorder.

From the Catechism of the Catholic Church:

2357 Homosexuality refers to relations between men or between women who experience an exclusive or predominant sexual attraction toward persons of the same sex. It has taken a great variety of forms through the centuries and in different cultures. Its psychological genesis remains largely unexplained. Basing itself on Sacred Scripture, which presents homosexual acts as acts of grave depravity, (141) tradition has always declared that "homosexual acts are intrinsically disordered."(142) They are contrary to the natural law. They close the sexual act to the gift of life. They do not proceed from a genuine affective and sexual complementarity. Under no circumstances can they be approved.

2358 The number of men and women who have deep-seated homosexual tendencies is not negligible. This inclination, which is objectively disordered, constitutes for most of them a trial. They must be accepted with respect, compassion, and sensitivity. Every sign of unjust discrimination in their regard should be avoided. These persons are called to fulfill God's will in their lives and, if they are Christians, to unite to the sacrifice of the Lord's Cross the difficulties they may encounter from their condition.

2359 Homosexual persons are called to chastity. By the virtues of self-mastery that teach them inner freedom, at times by the support of disinterested friendship, by prayer and sacramental grace, they can and should gradually and resolutely approach Christian perfection.

I thinks that some folks err when it comes to 2358, forgetting the compassion and sensitivity parts. We must love the homosexual person even as we declare homosexual acts to be sinful.

How to deal with the issue, and be sensitive, is something that many of us struggle with.

Saturday, July 19, 2008

Fr. Pacwa at St. Theodore's

Father Mitch Pacwa spoke at St. Theodore's last night. The topic was St. Paul, and he provided some interesting insights into St. Paul's times and life. I certainly feel inspired to read Acts and the Letters again!

Someone raised a question about how we can evangelize, especially in the workplace where it is often not allowed.

Fr. Pacwa talked about simply "doing little things" and acting like a Catholic and in that way inviting questions. Wearing a scapular, for example, or saying grace when about to eat in a public place. "People will ask you questions ... you gotta get people to question."

He mentioned that people will often raise objections about the Church, frequently noting that they were once Catholic but ...

One objection involves bad popes (or, for that matter, bad bishops and priests). He pointed out that the reason people know about these bad ones is the Church keeps the records. it is the source of the information in the first place, and doesn't just bury it. Moreover, he pointed out that even when they are bad, they still hold the office, and that the office deserves respect. He likened it to the military. You might have bad officers, but you still have to respect the rank of the officer.

One part I liked was that he emphasized doing so with a bit of humor to help lighten situations. Certainly better than thumping people over the head! I'm bad at that part.

Two other points he made got me thinking - perhaps in ways he hadn't intended. He mentioned the Pharisees, who were primarily lay people obsessed with the minutia of the law. The Traditionalists and there obsessions with rubrics and canon law? And he talked about folks who wanted to cling to and even go back into the old Covenant - the folks who want to go back to Pre- Vatican II ways? Hmm.

Overall, enjoyable.


Tuesday, July 15, 2008

Lake Placid - Santa's Workshop

One place we always visit near Lake Placid is Santa's Workshop.
Yes, it has rides and shows and fun and more - but it also remembers the real reason for Christmas.

Every day, they reenact the Christmas Story.

They also have a small chapel dedicated to St. Nicholas in which they tell stories about him and his goodness. (Here's the good-looking-one in the chapel.)


Novel, Rock of Faith

Making progress on the novel. 800-1,000 words in the last two days. I moved an exposition section from earlier in the novel to the current scene I'm working on, turning it into dialogue and thus making it flow more smoothly.

Rock of Faith practiced last night. We worked on a new song (for September), and practiced some of the songs for the July 27 Mass. I'd like to see us pick up the pace and play more often.

Sunday, July 13, 2008

Out of death, life

It is terrible that some parishes are closing in the Diocese of Rochester. Many people are mourning.

But out of those deaths we can see life. We are witnessing that at our parish.

We held a coffee hour to greet new parishioners. Father noted that we'd added a number of them in recent weeks.

My wife and I went. We talked to several new people. They were coming from parishes that had closed. They were joining St. Theodore's.

Our parish is indeed growing. I looked back at the collections for the past few weeks, and even though summer is traditionally a time for dropping contributions and attendance, the numbers were all healthy.

I think it was great that we were reaching out to these new people. We need more of that.

Father Pacwa's talk this Friday night should also help to draw people to the parish - if not to become members, at least to know that it is there and to appreciate what it offers.

Meanwhile, in two weeks Rock of Faith will play, giving people a taste of the music we have at St. Theodore's. Practice is tomorrow night. I haven't completed my new song - but the other one that I wrote for the group will be played at the July 27 Mass.

Saturday, July 12, 2008

Quit complaining; do something positive

(Yeah - I've got more shots from the vacation!)

I was at a Catholic bookshop today. A customer was talking to one of the clerks about churches closing in the Diocese of Rochester - and in some other New York dioceses (such as Buffalo).
He then made a crack about how things will get better when Bishop Clark goes.
I was annoyed. Other dioceses are facing problems, too. Ones that have had traditional or conservative bishops. It's a dilemma faced by many dioceses in the Northeast, no matter what kind of bishops the dioceses have. And who is to say what will happen when we do get a new bishop? I don't think it will substantially change things in and of itself.

Moreover, complaining does not improve things. In fact, it can make things worse by creating an environment of nonsupport and negativity. It turns into a self-fulfilling prophecy.

Then I thought of St. Francis. The Church in his day was in a mess. Did he just complain about the bishop? No. He responded to the call, "Rebuild my church." Simply, humbly, actively, and positively.

So instead of complaining, take action. Do something positive to improve things - like the people who created the new Padre Pio Chapel here in Gates.

Friday, July 11, 2008

Novel writing - things learned

Writing this novel is a learning process in many ways.

As I go along, I have to figure out how to handle various things in ways that enhance the story and don't slow things down - like dialogue, background and exposition.

But there are two things I stumbled over in the last few days.

One was character names. I came to a section that dealt with characters I hadn't written about in a couple of weeks, and I forgot their full names. And because I'm working on a computer, their names were buried in previous files. Yesterday, I went back and made a list.

I've also realized that it might be helpful to make a time line to help make sure the timing in the story is plausible. I'll do that today.

These are things I'm sure that any experienced novelist knows, but I'm learning as I go.

One final thing. The novel is being written on my home computer. That makes it hard to work anywhere else. And on hot days, I hesitate to have the computer on for any length of time (we don't have air conditioning). Maybe it's time to think of a laptop I can take with me (especially to air-conditioned places!).

Thursday, July 10, 2008

The novel - and the McDonald's boycott

A few hundred more words today - up to more than 22,000 overall. That means I've added about 5,000 this summer so far.

13,000 more to go to my "goal," though I will happily push past that mark.

I've got to come up with another name besides the working title "Swedenborg."

On another note, the AFA is calling for a boycott of McDonald's because of its support for same sex marriage - and for implying those who oppose SSM are motivated by "hate."

Umm, some folks are motivated by faith and love.

But I pretty much boycott McDonald's (and other fast food places) already because the food they serve is a threat to health!

Wednesday, July 09, 2008

Wounded wings

Mountain stream Adirondacks. I sat on some boulders, just listening to the water. Peaceful.
Yesterday was not so peaceful. I went to give blood.
Things started off okay - except for the technician talking to another about "sticking" me. She got the needle in and the blood flowing - then it stopped. A more experienced technician came over and started to adjust the needle in my arm. It hurt. I made that known. She did it again, and again, hurting each time. Finally she suggested that I not give that day. I agreed.
But when the original technician took the partly filled bag off, she put it on the chair near my legs, and it leaked. On the chair. On the floor. On my pants. And she had taken her gloves off, so blood got on her hands, too.
There was lots of furious wiping of blood. I then mentioned it got on my pants. She said she was going to clean that. She did, with an alcohol swipe.
That did not get all the blood out, and I also then smelled of alcohol.
Meanwhile, no sorry, nothing.
I went home with my left arm bandaged and unusable for anything heavy, and my right arm still tender from the pulled muscle I got getting my dad out of his wheelchair a week and a half ago.
That's twice now, Red Cross. I used to give regularly - two gallons in the 1970s and 80s. I had to stop when I made a church trip to Haiti, which put me on a list for several years, and I got out of the habit.
In the 90s I went once, a similar painful experience (though no spilled blood). Maybe as I've aged my veins have gotten smaller, I don't know.
What I do know is that I won't give again for a long time - if ever.

Tuesday, July 08, 2008

Lake Placid, the novel, and the Anglicans

6 a.m., Lake Placid, from near the motel where we stayed.
I wrote about 650 words on the novel yesterday - back to it. Another killing. I'm going ahead and writing it as it comes to me, not worrying whether it is too graphic for "Christian" markets. I'll deal with that later.
I also wrote the beginning of the "Santa" story I came up with at Lake Placid. A couple of hundred words on that. Sometimes I wonder if I should give up on adult fiction and just stick with the kids stuff.
And I finished the biography of Milton Hershey (of Hershey chocolates), about whom I might write a play for the school.
Speaking of the school, I have to go out there today and clean out computer files. They have to ship the computer back to the central office for reconfiguring, and I have all my school files on it. Ulp.
And then I go to give blood.
On a religious note, the Anglicans are having some problems over the ordination of women. There are reports that some bishops and even dioceses are thinking of aligning with Rome! The women's ordination and gay bishops/marriage issues could lead to more of this.

Monday, July 07, 2008

Vacation note

One of the views of Whiteface Mountain near Lake Placid.

The mountains inspired poetry - as I mentioned - and a children's story idea.

I enjoyed the trip.

It was also nice going to a church in another diocese (Ogdensburg, as opposed to Rochester). Not because of problems with Rochester, but because it just helps to illustrate the universality of the church.

The parish in Lake Placid, by the way, was Kate Smith's. Apparently she converted while living in Lake Placid, and is buried in the parish cemetery. Not surprisingly, Mass on July 5 ended with "God Bless America." I'm not a fan of "patriotic" music at Mass, but given the circumstances, I didn't grumble.

Sunday, July 06, 2008

Back from vacation.

Back. Wonderful time.

Santa's Workshop. Wild Center. Robert Louis Stevenson Cottage. Olympic training center. Fishing. John Brown's Farm.

I even scribbled a few haiku, and found a canoeing Santa to add to my collection.

Pictures to follow.