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Religion

  • There is a painful pleasure in being perfected

    With truth in teasing, Hubby Dear has often confronted me with a statement delivered to the air surrounding us. “It must be wonderful to be perfect. One day, perhaps, I will be as perfect as you are.” His sarcasm does not suffer from subtlety! With sword swiftness it cuts through to the heart of the matter, exposing the marrow of my need to be in control. Being perfect — as I was perceived — is in no way identical to being perfected! As Scripture says, my husband catches me, the “wise one,” in the throes of my craftiness.

  • Spend Lenten Wednesdays with God to prepare for Easter

    Lent and springtime have much in common. They both offer remarkable opportunities to stretch after a long winter nap in the cold darkness. They are chances to green up from the dry, dull brownness that marks our withered spirits. Lent is a pilgrimage of 40 days and 40 nights. It takes us from arid deserts to mountaintop heights, from gardens of agony to hilltop crosses. It is a voyage that commemorates authentically passionate living, the sort of suffering that many try to avoid and all know is part and parcel of true life.

  • How can we find religion on city streets?

    Hubby Dear and I recently went on a weeklong vacation with a church friends. It was a fairly arduous bus trip with stops in Jacksonville, Miami, and Key West, Fla. Our senior citizen bones ached and groaned, but our equally elderly psyche shouted pleasure at being with folks we knew. We could commiserate as stiffness had to be kneaded from our joints each day. We could laugh at our antics and foibles while enjoying the simple pleasures of life.

  • How can we fill Valentine’s Day with love?

    I can hear Hubby Dear groaning. We are on the brink of Valentine’s Day and he is devoid of imaginative ways to celebrate the day. The usual tributes bear their own degree of difficulty. Meal planning has caused chocolates and rich desserts to be verboten. Equally out of the question are roses that wilt before they are ensconced in a vase. Anything I might have needed or expressed as a yen has already been offered and received — with the possible exception of perfume that I typically declare to be too expensive! What’s a guy to do?

  • Life is a learning process when we are bound in the spirit

    Sometimes it seems as if the scriptures paint a picture of impossibilities. They appear to be impossibly unreachable, impossibly untouchable, impossibly impractical. To think about a time and place where opposites live together harmoniously and communally appears to be a waste of time and energy. I can hear Hubby Dear’s usual retort, given when I present him with ideas that suggest unorthodox combinations of people or ideas. “It’ll never happen!” says he. “You’re wasting your time!”

  • Life is a learning process when we are bound in the spirit

    Sometimes it seems as if the scriptures paint a picture of impossibilities. They appear to be impossibly unreachable, impossibly untouchable, impossibly impractical. To think about a time and place where opposites live together harmoniously and communally appears to be a waste of time and energy. I can hear Hubby Dear’s usual retort, given when I present him with ideas that suggest unorthodox combinations of people or ideas. “It’ll never happen!” says he. “You’re wasting your time!”

  • Hoarding inhibits happiness

    I am not a fan of reality shows. In my view, they distort reality, make it a hoax at best and a horror at its worst. Among those invaders, the one depicting life as a hoarder, is most disturbing. The reason probably stems from the storing of goods, materials, ideas and emotions all of us have experienced at one time or other.

  • In goodness or malice, the world can be ruled with words

    The brief respite between holidays became my nesting place and resting place with words. I read until my eyes grew weary and my brain could not absorb another thought. To say the least, it was fun. To tell the truth, I relished every moment.
    First came the painful journey through life with “The Book Thief,” who learned from firsthand experience “the Fuhrer decided that he would rule the world with words.” He opined he would never fire a gun because he would not have to do so —an opinion he never actually followed into action.

  • Prayer for Christian Unity: Has Christ been divided?

    As noted by the Graymoor Ecumenical and Interreligious Institute, the traditional period in the Northern Hemisphere for the Week of Prayer for Christian Unity is Jan. 18-25. Proposed in 1908, these dates bridge the dates for the feasts of the Chair of Peter (Jan. 18) and the Conversion of St. Paul (Jan. 25), and therefore, have symbolic significance.

  • Check to see the lighthouse of faith from within

    Recently, I attended a funeral for a parishioner who had requested the singing of “This Little Light of Mine” as the opening hymn. The song was both an unusual choice and a heart-rending one. It evoked smiles on the faces of the attendees, mostly retired. Here we were, aging adults, singing a children’s song, alive with rhythm. I guess we all felt it was inappropriate to clap our hands, but the song surely begged our indulgence.