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Day_dorothy1And she’s still preaching the Gospel.

Dorothy [Day]
was a great believer in what de Caussade called “the sacrament of the
present moment.” In each situation, in each encounter, in each task
before us, she believed, there is a path to God. We do not need to be
in a monastery or a chapel. We do not need to become different people
first. We can start today, this moment, where we are, to add to the
balance of love in the world, to add to the balance of peace.

Robert Ellsberg in America Magazine 

The momentary truth is, I’m a mess.  I’m trying to begin Advent in a spirit if waiting and giving birth, but it’s hard.  I wonder if you would pray for me.

I’m, as I said, a mess.  Mom’s cancer is tough and challenging and her health is not so much improving!  My thesis, which is supposed to be completed shortly,  is deeply delayed and I am really trying to figure out if I even care about it.  And I’m plagued currently by depression.  If I were me counseling me, I’d say, be patient and kind with yourself.  If I were me, as I really am, I’d say get over yourself, already… everyone else has it harder, tougher, more painful, and just flat-out-worse-than-me.  And I so wish I were a better knitter and writer than I am.  You know the drill. Wishing I could write a kick-ass thesis: wish I could knit an item that will make my Mom feel better….

Thanks for saying a prayer for my mother!

[some inanity edited out on 12/1/05]

Some Thoughts on Wombishness—Lorretta Ross-Gotta

The intensity and strain
that many of us bring to Christmas must suggest to some onlookers that, on the
whole, Christians do not seem to have gotten the point of it. Probably few of us have the faith or the
nerve to tamper with hallowed Christmas traditions on a larger scale or with
our other holiday celebrations. But a
small experiment might prove interesting. What if, instead of doing something, we were to be something
special? Be a womb. Be a dwelling for God. Be surprised. 



Ah, that last quiz was so unfair!  If you didn’t "know" me, you couldn’t "know" me!  (ahem.)  So, here’s
a better quiz ’bout me at which you could excel (well, if you’ve read my blog, that is.)

I made a Quiz about me.
Take my Quiz! and then Check out the Scoreboard!
(then let me know after you make a quiz about you!)

Dscn8621I’m off to the beach again with a group of some new and some not new knitters for our fifth knitting retreat.  Years ago I started these knitting retreats to facilitate the passing on of knitting to others (the gift that keeps local yarn shops in booming business).  It was at a knitting retreat that Eunice invented our favorite "happy hat" pattern

Also it has been a time for me to connect with others in my own peer group and share my Mom with others.  Mom has been to all the previous four retreats and between us, and the ongoing sharing of the craft from those we’ve touched, more than 30 people have been enabled, um, er, encouraged to take up the addictive needles.

KnittingIt’s such a blessing to gather with others for a casual weekend of food, folks, and sometimes even fun fur.  If you’re interested here is the prayer brochure we will be using. I’ll hold you all in prayer as well. 

Download knitting_retreat_program_2005.pdf

"We can never do theology well unless we have the humility and the courage to listen to the arguments of those with whom we disagree and take them seriously. … We have to lose those certainties that banish uncomfortable truths, see both sides of the argument, ask the questions that may frighten us."

   — fr. Timothy Radcliffe o.p., The Wellspring of Hope,1996


Baby_on_floor_1Chinese folklore says there are invisible red threads connecting a
newborn child’s spirit to all the people who will be important in her/his
life. As the child grows, the threads shorten to bring these people closer



Xi An Jie I cannot tell you how excited we are.  My sister got word today that a daughter awaits her and her husband in China.  She’s adorable, isn’t she?!  She waits (in good care, I’m sure) in Dingyuan orphanage in Anhui Province.  Here’s the link to a map of orphanages in Anhui province. We, her family here in CA, are all wearing red threads as a prayer, to help bring her safely home to J and J.  I pray for her biological mother who gave her the gift of life both by birthing her and by finding a way to give her to my sister. 

A red thread to China

A red thread to China was cast today
From us to a child so far away.

This thread symbolizes an attachment of hearts
That distance alone can’t keep us apart.

This tiny, thin thread may stretch, tangle or fray
But our love for her will grow stronger each day.
Through the test of time it won’t break or sever
She’ll be part of us forever and ever.

With oceans between us, the distance is spanned
By a love that is greater than we could have planned.

So for now we’ll just love her and pray every day
That God keeps her and loves her for us till we may
Travel to China, that land of great past,
To the side of our daughter, to hold her at last.

© T.A.F. 2002 (Adapted)

For more information about adoption of girls from China, I highly recommend the book The Lost Daughters of China, by Karin Evans

As an example of a hermeneutical exploration, we are reading Violence Unveiled: Humanity at the Crossroads by Gil Bailie for my Hermeneutics course.  I’ve read the text before and have heard Bailie speak (even had him as one of our Theology on Tap presenters in the Archdiocese) and this text is on my lifechanging books list. 

Based on the theories of French anthropoligist Rene Girard, Bailie’s text explores the roots and uses of violence in culture.  Using a plethora of materials from the vast intertext of sources, he explores the effects of mimetic desire on humanity and culture. 

In a time of war (and when has there been a time of no-war?), on  day when we honor those who have fought in the name of national safety and interests, let us hope for a time when we will grow beyond the impulses that drive us to war with others for any reason.

You are Kermit the Frog.
You are reliable, responsible and caring. And you
have a habit of waving your arms about

“Hi ho!” “Yaaay!” and
“How Green Was My Mother”

“Surfin’ the Webfoot: A Frog’s Guide to the

Sitting in the swamp playing banjo.

“Hmm, my banjo is wet.”

What Muppet are you?
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November 2005