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Showing posts from February 28, 2021

For a new baby

 A friend is holding a blessing circle, hosting us over zoom to celebrate in advance of the delivery date. For the newborn we send our individual prayers and petitions:  "Every form of catechesis would do well to attend to the 'way of beauty' ( via pulchritudinis) .--Pope Francis, The Joy of the Gospel no. 167 Makers of love child, your knowing dream, towing you in these Niagara moments-- In these storied nights swift approaching, as you lay tossed like a leaf on a river, may you together awe in the speeding quiet current. In the Niagara a moment comes--   the horizon surrenders-- May you, under the hypnosis of your sighs, womb churning, may you still find freedom when the incentive to live and grow is required. Far from it -- the falls which still roars--still the gravity which bears you swiftly on in the settling in, you will know you will make it work-- turns falling in their course, trusts latch, sustenances moving into this new birth. As a leaf whorls past those whirl

The Tusk in the Dragon's Lair

Once upon a time in a beaten land, where a village was lost, it's patron dragon disturbed and forelorn, raising hateful vengeance on the pirates who stole her eggs, but that is another story, and this, the story of what happened to the pirate left behind, who stayed in the Dragon's lair, who could not at first draw his eyes from the raw pale thing--was it a walrus tusk? While he stood looking, let us try to answer. Legend has it there was a mystical bone that might restore one's health if he were daft with despair, repair one who felt a barren desert to know themself a fruitful, lush garden--or as it were, it might show a success of an inner struggle yet born out.  As this was indeed ancient, the relic bone in the dragon's lair had passed many a mouth. Animals buried it, dug it out again or they fought, strongest wins, but this is the story of how the bone became a gift bone, how it came to have magic property. In the time of old, the fancy, the well-to-do, as always, m

Does God change what was going to happen because of our prayer? how?

A friend involved in writing prayers of the faithful with another has posed the question, Does God/how does God change what was going to happen because of our prayer? Asking too, what books informed this opinion.  Most of us can find the answer to this question without books. I happen to need them desperately. I'd like to try a few ways of talking: one of them will be anecdotal, one philosophical, another sociological and socio-psychological. Perhaps a narrative theology in conclusion. What a wild ride this answer could be! Does God act? Yes, this is the core belief. While revelation may be sourced not only in scripture or tradition but also in experience, here is one anecdote: I fell through a roof when I was in El Salvador, aged 19. The head-first fall onto concrete from 15 feet or so might have ended otherwise. I'm grateful to God and enter a seminary a few years later. At my home parish, of which I had been on delegation to our sister parish, the community offered prayer in

Prayers of a political immigrant

Consider the prayers of a political immigrant. For in tongues lies the autonomy of prayer, a preference cultivated after a fashion, a tribal competence, whoever belongs in language to G-d,  modeling choices of grateful praise, entering the self-expressive spaces, waving or nodding, the gestures of a kind understanding, spontaneous some, others dignified.  All the links below are internal, directing to other articles on this blog, with exception of the Senator's page. *-*-*-*-*-*-* O God of Peace, For a World Community bent on peace, draw me into community celebration of the Treaty for the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons . For a Senator who enjoins practical steps to nuclear Disarmament,  You make us grateful -- contact Senator Ed Markey for thanks For example, "It means a great deal to me reading of your support for nuclear abolition, at least calling on President Biden to cancel the submarine-launched, low-yeld W76-2 warhead, fielded under Trump. Thank you also for your lette

An official cease fire was signed on March 4, 1991.

 The map of Iraq filled the television screen, while audio played from Baghdad. My sister turned four March 4, the day an official cease fire was signed, but children at the Ameriyah shelter in Baghdad were not so fortunate.   Kathy Kelly writes: "There, on February 13, 1991, two 2,000 lb. U.S. laser guided missiles killed 400 civilians, mostly women and children. Another 200 were severely wounded. I wish President Joe Biden could meet the Pope there and ask him to hear his confession." Promoting dialogue as he did in his 2019 visit to the Arab Emirates, the upcoming apostolic journey, March 5-8, Pope Francis is scheduled to arrive in Baghdad, and the next day go to Najaf in central Iraq to meet Grand Ayatollah Sayyid Ali Al-Husayni al-Sistani, the 90-year-old spiritual leader of Iraq's Shiite Muslims. An interreligious meeting will follow at the Plain of Ur, the birthplace of the patriarch Abraham. On Sunday, March 7, in the Kurdistan region the Pope arrives in the north

Captain James Yee, on Religious Torture at Guantanamo

 He makes paper out of veterans' old uniforms. He writes poetry, including the poem he read for us during our Witness Against Torture fast January--2020. The art is therapy for his PTSD, having served 76 days in solitary confinement. Had they not arrested him, he figures, he would still be in the military.  Outside a hearing of his case he is pictured wearing military dress in 2004 with his wife and young child. The charges including sedition, aiding the enemy, and espionage, were eventually dropped but they had carried the threat of the death penalty. He might have argued with the pathos of Job, they call me not guilty but they don't apologize or call me innocent. The Book of Job: "I am clean and without transgression; I am innocent; there is no guilt in me. Yet he invents pretexts against me and reckons me as his enemy. He puts my feet in the stocks; he watches all my ways!" (Job 33: 9-11) A convert to Islam in 1991, James Yee grew up Christian in a third generation