Showing posts from May, 2017

Spanish Cooking

In my conversational Spanish class, we translate articles we read in Spanish.  To be different, I decided to translate a recipe.  To get an "A" for a grade, I decided to make the dish and bring it to class to eat.

The dish was Pez Amarillo.  The translation is Yellow Fish.  It didn't come out like the picture but it tasted good.  The fish was supposed to be catfish.  Well, the fish markets around here don't carry catfish.  I thought tilapia would taste like it.  Unfortunately, I shouldn't have gone with "taste," but rather texture.  The picture shows a fish that looks like kabobs.  The tilapia disintegrated into rice-looking tiny flakes.

Another problem was the measurements.  Instead of teaspoon and tablespoon, the Spanish said "g."   It couldn't mean gram; that's too much.  The teacher said it meant, "grain."  Grain!  How could I separate one grain out of a powder of cumin?

Then in the preparation, the directions said to a…

Repent, the End is Near!

"Repent, the End is Near!" are signs crazy people in comics carry.  To me, that's what all the messages from Medjugorje say.  I didn't pay much attention to that apparition.  In fact, I don't pay much attention to any of the apparitions, except Our Lady of Kibeho.   And that's because of Immaculee Ilibagiza's story.  That story will rock you!  Ever since then, I'm open to apparitions.  That means I am not convinced they're a divine intervention but if you believe, then God bless you.

My Heart Will Triumph by the visionary Mirjana Soldo is the latest book I've read.  I enjoyed it and have a little bit more understanding what the hoopla from Medjugorje is about.  It's Mirjana's story, but she tells of the other visionaries, also.  At least I know who's who.  Some of my questions were addressed, maybe not answered, but I am information to ponder.

The book is a history of the apparition.  I really do recommend it.  What drives me crazy…

Respect    I prefer that this link be a picture, but I can't get it to be one.  It's a positive reminder on respect.  Everyone you talk to is worthy of your attention.  I saw this image, this morning.  It brought to mind an incident that happened, yesterday, when I was waiting behind a lady who was being served, at a counter.  While the cashier was ringing up her purchases, she had a few questions for her--the customer.  "Did she have a store card?" "Her phone number?" "How was she paying?" "Did she have any questions?"

Unfortunately, the customer was simultaneously on her cell phone.

How rude!

She slipped her answers to the cashier, in between her conversation on the phone.  She didn't miss a beat.  She was carrying on two conversations!

Surely, she could have paused her phone conversation for a couple of minutes.

Prayer and Community

Lectio          Acts 1: 12-14    

After Jesus had been taken up to heaven the apostles returned to Jerusalem from the mount called Olivet, which is near Jerusalem, a sabbath day's journey away.

When they entered the city they went to the upper room where they were staying, Peter and John and James and Andrew, Philip and Thomas, Bartholomew and Matthew, James son rof Alphaeus, Simon the Zealot, and Judas son of James.

All these devoted themselves with one accord to prayer, together with some women, and Mary the mother of Jesus, and his brothers.


Afer the Ascension of Jesus, the apostles stay together and often pray.  They are a community, in communion with each other.  After seeing Jesus ascending, the intensity of their prayers increased.  "All these devoted themselves with one accord to prayer...".  What is important in these verses is that the believers stayed in community.  Also, they devoted themselves to prayer.  Can you continuously pray?


Did the a…

The Debt Cursillo Owes

Prison ministry is my apostolate.  I'm also a Cursillista, which means I've made my Cursillo.  Cursillo is a "working retreat" that introduces you to Jesus.  But I never heard the story of how Cursillo owes it success to two prison inmates.

The prison chaplain handed out the story, yesterday.  I read it then and chalked it up to a nice "tale."  Today, I did a google search and found that it definitely happened.

I don't know why I doubted.  I see it often in prison--conversion.

The story is about the founder of the Cursillo movement, Eduardo Bonnin in 1949.  He had an idea and was trying to start Cursillo.  He wasn't succeeding very well.  Cursillo wasn't going anywhere.

Coincidentally, two men were condemned to die in prison.  The priest chaplain tried to prepare them to meet God.  They would have none of it.  So the priest asked two Catholic laymen to talk to the inmates to see if they could reach them.

One of the men was Eduardo Bonnin.  They…

Prayer for Us Ephesians

Lectio                                  Ephesians 1:17-23

Brothers and sisters:

May the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of glory, give you a Spirit of wisdom and revelation resulting in knowledge of him.
May the eyes of your hearts be enlightened, that you may know what is the hope that belongs to his call, what are the riches of glory in his inheritance among the holy ones, and what is the surpassing greatness of his power for us who believe, in accord with the exercise of his great might, which he worked in Christ, raising him from the dead and seating him at his right hand in the heavens, far above every principality, authority, power, and dominion, and every name that is named not only in this age but also in the one to come.
And he put all things beneath his feet and him as head over all things to the church, which is his body, the fullness of the one who fills all things in every way.


Note this is a prayer.  Paul is praying for the Ephesians. He praises God, th…


My mother told me that these initials stood for "I Have Suffered."  We were in church looking at a monogram.  And I have been told a million times what it really means.  Of this, I was reminded by Philip Kosloski, in his article in Aleteia, IHS - What does the Monogram Mean?

Mr. Kosloski explains that it isn't a monogram.  It's a Christogram because it's not initials, but rather the name, Jesus.

Dating all the way back to the third century, Christians shortened the name of Jesus by only writing the first three letters of his name in Greek, ΙΗΣ (from his full name ΙΗΣΟΥΣ). The Greek letter Σ (sigma), is written in the Latin alphabet as an “S,” resulting in the monogram being commonly represented as ΙΗS.



Lectio                                                 Acts of the Apostles 8:5-8, 14-17

Now when the apostles in Jerusalem heard that Samaria had accepted the word of God, they sent them Peter and John, who went down and prayed for them, that they might receive the Holy Spirit, for it had not yet fallen upon any of them; they had only been baptized in the name of the Lord Jesus. Then they laid hands on them and they received the Holy Spirit.


I am concentrating on Acts 8: 14-17.  But the reason for the two apostles, Peter and John, to come to Samaria is understood in the events preceding this Lectio.
    Firstly, Samaria is important because it shows that the Gospel is being spread beyond the Jews of Judea and Galilee.
    Secondly, before chapter 8, the deacon, Stephen is stoned to death (our first martyr).  So the persecution of the church has begun.
    Thirdly, the Samaritans believed in a messiah.
    Fourthly, the emphasis on creating a community is exemplified here. T…

Surrogacy Outrage

Of course, I've heard of surrogacy.  But not until I read Breakpoint's article, "The Handmaid's Tale Come True, did I realize how widespread it has become.  It's alarming!

Surrogacy is embryo transfer.  Women who want babies but not the pregnancy that produces the babe, have their fertilized embryos inserted into other women.  These women carry the baby to term.  They are surrogates.

What has happened is an industry has arisen in Third World Countries.

In India, the number of women renting their wombs for affluent white foreigners was so high that the government enacted a law limiting the practice to Indian couples. All that did was open the “market” to other desperate Third World women.

To me, this is just one example of a cultural fad gone amock.  Too many us jump on the latest fad without thinking very deeply.  Sound good, if you can't carry your own baby to term.  But good things are misused and in this case, our most vulnerable (babies and poor women), a…

A Maternal Ambassador's Peace Plan Unveiled at the United Nations

A Maternal Ambassador's Peace Plan Unveiled at the United Nations: On May 12, at the very time Pilot, writes about the event.
Pope Francis was arriving in Portugal to celebrate the hundredth anniversary of the Fatima apparitions and the canonization of Saints Francisco and Jacinta Marto, something unusual was happening at the United Nations.  Father Roger Landry, in the

This is a clear sign that they believe that Fatima has something important to say to us, regardless of our religious status, and to say to the nations of the world. It has something in particular to say about peace in this institution dedicated to preventing the scourge of war."

Archbishop Bernardito Auza, Papal Nuncio and Permanent Observer of the Holy See to the UN explained that Our Lady of Fatima has a timeless message of Peace for the world:

(1) Conversion of  minds

(2)  Conversion of hearts

(3)  Prayer is important

(4)  Everyone must work towards peace.

Archbishop Auza said at the end of his remarks that …

Reaping What I Sow

I hate gardening.  I've spent all morning planting.  The soil had already been prepared by hubby.  I just had to plop in seedlings.  Even so, I worked enough to remember why I hate to garden:

the dirt--It's disgusting.  My gardening gloves are ruined.  Even washing them, they're never the same.  Somehow the dirt manages to penetrate through the gloves and into my fingernails--and I keep my fingernails short.  And (get this) when I went to take a drink from my water bottle, there was dirt on the rim.  I thought it wouldn't bother me, but I could taste it and now my teeth are gritty.worms, snakes, nightcrawlers--They're disgusting.  My garden is full of them.  The thought did occur to me to put a BAIT sign in my front yard.  Hubby says they're good for the garden.the sun--It's disgustingly hot.  I was wearing a big straw hat so I wouldn't get sunstroke.  But after awhile, my head was sweating and I felt like I was getting heat stroke.the bugs--They're…


This post should be a book review of The Circle by Dave Eggers.  But I couldn't get into the novel.  I'm on p. 127.  I get that this company, The Circle is the best company ever.  OKay, already!

Book Club is tomorrow night.  I have 326 more pages to read.  I just can't.  So I went to see the movie, instead.

I liked the movie, in spite of Facebook friends saying they didn't.  One even said that he walked out on it. And it was the dumbest movie he ever saw.

Well, I disagree.  I think of it as the new 1984.  I can see a really good discussion coming tomorrow night, at book club.

The Games Jerzy Played

You know how many books have written a disclaimer, in small print, somewhere near the front of their novels, “The characters and events in this book are fictitious. Any apparent similarity to real persons is not intended by the author."  Well, Jerome Charyn, the author of Jerzy A Novel, writes the disclaimer more creatively, “This is a work of fiction.  Characters, organizations, events, and places (even those that are actual) are either products of the author’s imagination or are used fictitiously.”
I consciously had to keep that in mind because Charyn’s Jerzy is real.  Jerzy was a real person.  His name was Jerzy Kosinski and he was a prominent writer from the 1960’s to the 1990’s.  He was popular and sold many books. Jerome Charyn uses Jerzy as a diving board to cannon ball into his imagination.  And what a ride it is.  Jerzy is BFF with Peter Sellers, Princess Margaret and Stalin’s daughter, Svetlanda. All the people he meets, befriends, loves, and marries, add color to Jer…

Close Call

Truly, Madly, Guilty, by Liane Moriarty is one of my book club, Argonauta's assignments. I had such a hard time getting into it, that I was wondering if I was going senile.  I just could get into it.  The plot revolves around three couple and I couldn't keep them straight.  Who's who?  Who's married to whom?

But as the day of the Argonauta's meeting approached, I sat down with the story and focused on just reading.  It is a good story.  Liane Moriarty drives you crazy with talk about an event, an earth shattering happening, something that changed the lives of the three couples.  She teases you because you think the next chapter contains the revelation.  But it never does.  Very late in the novel, everything will mesh.

It is a nail biter, easy to read, and the characters are people you know.  I mean they're believeable.  This would make a good beach book because its 400+ pages. And it really is a good book.

Why I don't Want My Family In the Audience

The expression, “It’s complicated,” is overused.  But in my particular case it is true.  I confess, I don’t really understand my own feelings.  They’re too complicated.  I never tell, never mind ask, any one in my family to come to an event I’m a participant in.  I feel:
·Nervous because I can’t trust them to be honest.  They’ll be kind and tell me how good I was. ·Rushed to get everything over with to let them off the hook—which means I’m not focused on my part. ·Ashamed that they well be ashamed to have such an old fool for a relative. ·Fear, that  I am belittling their image of their mother or wife. ·Embarrassed to show a side to my family that they’ve never seen before. ·Evil—did I force them to come and see me. ·Exposed in revealing ideas that they can’t, won’t ever appreciate. ·Worried about what they are thinking. ·Self-conscious—are my clothes and demeanor appropriate? ·Crazy—why am I like this?  I must be crazy.
Have I given you my explanation of “it’s complicated?”  The urban diction…

Contemplative Nuns v. "Cloistered Brothers"

Our Spiritual Advisor was with Chapter, today.  He was telling us that one of his students was amazed at how much my "cloistered brothers" were like the nuns in the abbey.  They were comparing my "cloistered brothers" to the Trappestines.

community lifeprayer scheduleworship togethersimple life It seemed that the nuns and "cloistered brothers" have similar attitudes.  Their community helps them overcome any separate problems which an individual would have.  This sharing and community spirit is a testimony to their trust in God.  Their simple life of prayer lived within a community makes them strong. Happy, too!

Reaction of Jews and Romans to Resurrection of Christ

Reaction of Jews and Romans to resurrection of Christ: Q. I have always been puzzled by the lack of reaction to Christ's resurrection from Jewish citizens and Roman officials.

Oh, there was a reaction all right.  Read Matthew 28: 11-15.

What convinces me is the reaction of the Apostles.  Why would they all insist that Jesus rose from the dead?

There was no money in it.

There were no fame and glory in it.  In fact, they were persecuted.

What was in it for them except persecution and tortured to death? (John was exiled.)

And they all told the same story.

Read Father's Doyle in the link above.

Turibius of Mogrovejo

One of my "cloistered brothers" was received today in the Lay Fraternities of Saint Dominic.  He St. Turibius.
chose to have the religious name of

He was Spanish priest and sent to Peru as Archbishop of Lima.  He baptized both St. Rose of Lima and St. Martin de Porres.

Be Patient

1 PT 2:20B-25Beloved:
If you are patient when you suffer for doing what is good,
this is a grace before God.
For to this you have been called,
because Christ also suffered for you,
leaving you an example that you should follow in his footsteps.

He committed no sin, and no deceit was found in his mouth.

When he was insulted, he returned no insult;
when he suffered, he did not threaten;
instead, he handed himself over to the one who judges justly.
He himself bore our sins in his body upon the cross,
so that, free from sin, we might live for righteousness.
By his wounds you have been healed.
For you had gone astray like sheep,
but you have now returned to the shepherd and guardian of your souls.


Peter is addressing the people's sufferings.  He urges them to imitate Jesus, Who suffered.  Recall Isaiah's Suffering Servant.  Jesus brings healing with God, through his life-giving death.


My sufferings are nothing compared to what Jesus endured.  Life is too short to wallow in se…

Beaver Destruction

You had to be there.  The area looked like a bomb hit it.  The trees were fell all over the ground. We were hiking Rocky Woods.

Worse!  The beavers had made a dam which caused the water to pool on one side of it and rise.  This wiped out our bridge to cross Chickering Pond.  See how one end is under water.  The entire bridge is under water due to the high water level caused by the damn beavers' dam.
They really did some damage.

Noli Simul Flare Sorbereque

At the bottom of by the page of a magazine I was reading was an ad for a book, The Devil HatesLatin by Katharine Galgano.  It sounded interesting so I bought it.  I was immediately hooked because the hero was a Dominican and although the setting was in Italy, there were many references to Boston.  Add to that, one of the main characters is an ex-con.

What more could I want?  How about action?  Thrills?  Romance?  Catholicism?

The Devil Hates Latin has them all.  It's a very good story.  I'd qualify it as an adventure story.  Two families are strangely united by a common interest.  They go through some scary stuff together.  A rogue religious community tries to eliminate the entire families.  That's the story.  But you find yourself rooting for the ordinary people.  The priests, you have to sort out the good ones from the bad ones.  The bad ones have the money and are trying to protect their power.  An exorcist does the trick.
Another interesting observation was the descr…

God Judges Justly

Oo-o-h. I finally get it.  A scripture phrase has been bothering me ever since I read it, Monday.  It is 1Peter 2: 23.

It says "he handed himself over to the one who judges justly."

I was thinking, Pilate judges justly?

Well I finally figured out that the verse is talking about God--Jesus handed Himself over to the Father by His death.

I would have understood immediately if capitalization was used to refer to God.

He handed Himself over to the One Who judges justly.


No question that One is God.

Pride, Humility, and Social Media

Pride, Humility, and Social Media: On a recent trip to Sacramento, from my home base in the LA area, I flew Southwest Airlines. In an idle moment, I reached for the magazine in the seatback pocket and commenced to leaf through it.

The irony of posting this on a blog is not lost on me.

Facial Expressions

There has always been something about this photo that has bothered me.  I think it's the expressions on the girls' faces.  It's not the suspicious unsmiling expressions on the girls, primarily.  It's the fact that the boy's expression is well, expressionless.  Why?

When my son was that age he would have been wearing the same expression as the girls.  He didn't like having his picture taken and would have been grouchy about it.  He was being forced to do something he didn't want to do, which is what the girls expressions tell me.

So the girls seem like normal kids, to me.  It's Francisco.  What was he thinking?