Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Alot of Hot Air...

This made me laugh out loud:

In a type of mock ceremony that's now been performed in at least four states, a robed "priest" used a hairdryer marked "reason" in an apparent bid to blow away the waters of baptism once and for all. Several dozen participants then fed on a "de-sacrament" (crackers with peanut butter) and received certificates assuring they had "freely renounced a previous mistake, and accepted Reason over Superstition."

Who Would Have Thought...

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What's really cool, is that I have visited Our Lady of Spring Bank Abbey a number of times. They are men who are truly striving for holiness. One of the monks runs a blog called Sub Tuum. It's worth a look.

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Bishop of the Moon?

“There's a story here in Baltimore about our beloved Archbishop-emeritus-emeritus, William D. Borders. He was ordained bishop in 1968 and made the first Bishop of Orlando, Florida. The new diocese encompassed central Florida and included Cape Canaveral, from where, the following year, Apollo 11 launched, bound for the moon. After that historic launch and lunar landing, with all the images of our astronauts walking, golfing, and planting the flag, Borders made an ad limina visit to Rome to meet with Paul VI. During their meeting, Borders rather nonchalantly observed, "You know, Holy Father, I am the bishop of the Moon." Pope Paul looked at him rather perplexed - probably wondering where along the line this American prelate lost his mind. Borders then continued by explaining that by the existing (1917) Code of Canon Law, he was the de facto ordinary of this "newly discovered" territory.

Archbishop Borders is 96 years old now, and he is still a beloved part of the Archdiocese of Baltimore. I hope he is as beloved in his former diocese - and on the moon.”

Biretta tip to Jesus Goes to Disney World.

Friday, July 17, 2009

Now I'm not normally a fan of Thomas Merton, but in the current edition of First Things there appears a letter that Thomas Merton wrote to an sixth grader in 1967. It's rather delightful and worthy of sharing, so here it is:

Thanks for your nice letter. You want "any information whatsoever" to help the sixth grade in the study of monasticism. Well, I'll see if I can get the brothers down in the store to send you a little book about the monastery here. That ought to help.

The monastic life goes back a long way. Monks are people who seek to devote all their time to knowing God better and loving Him more. For that reason they leave the cities and go out into lonely places where it is quiet and they can think. As they go on in life they want to find lonelier and lonelier places so they can think even more. In the end people think these monks are really crazy going off by themselves and of course sometimes they are. On the other hand when you are quiet and when you are free from a lot of cares, then you don't make enough money to pay taxes, and don't have a wife to fight with, and when your heart is quiet, you suddenly realize that everything is extremely beautiful and that just by being quiet you can almost sense that God is right there not only with you but even in you. Then you realize that it is worth the trouble of going away where you don't have to talk and mess around and make a darn fool of yourself in the middle of a lot of people who are running around in circles to no purpose. I suppose that is why monks go off and live in lonely places. Like me now I live alone in the woods with squirrels and rabbits and deer and foxes and a huge owl that comes down by my cabin and makes a spooky noise in the night, but we are friends and it is all ok. A monk who lives all by himself in the woods is called a hermit. There is a Rock 'n' Roll outfit called Herman and his Hermits but they are no the same thing.

I do not suppose for a moment that you wish to become a hermit (thought now I understand there are some girl hermits in England and they are sort of friends of mine because they are hermits, so I send them stuff about how to be a hermit). But anyway, I suggest that you sometimes be quiet and think about how good a thing it is that you are loved by God is is infinite and who wants you to be supremely happy. Isn't that something? It is, my dear, and let us keep praying that it will work out like that fore everybody. Good bye now.

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

What I Am Doing

Well folks, it's been awhile, and some of you might be wondering where I have been and what I have been doing, so it's time for a little update.

As of July 1 my assignment has changed from being pastor of one parish, pastoral administrator of another, and associate vocation director to further studies in the area of liturgy. In the fall I will begin studies toward an STL (Sacred Theology License) at the Liturgical Institute in Mundelein, IL. It was a great surprise (that's an understatement) and a great honor to be asked by my Bishop to do this. In the meantime - right now - I am in residence at my home parish, St. Lawrence, and providing weekend coverage for a number of small parishes. Below is a picture of my home parish church and school/parish center, which by the way, was just recently paid off. This makes the pastor very happy.

During these months between my last assignment and my next I am doing my best to prepare myself by studying my Latin and Italian. Why Italian? Well, I need to be able to read another modern language, so I decided Italian would be fun. So pray to St. Benedict, St. John Vianney, and St. Joseph of Cupertino that my Latin and Italian studies will go well.

So, as I resuscitate this blog, any ideas on what I might write about? Shall we do an "Ask Fr. Christensen" sort of thing where you can e-mail me your questions? Or shall we do something else? Please let me know what you thing. You can post it either in the comments or you can e-mail me at padredana at gmail dot com.

Saturday, July 11, 2009

Happy St. Benedict's Day!

Happy St. Benedict's day! Benedict is my Confirmation name so I consider him my patron, thus this is my feast day, and boy am I going to feast! As many of you know I am currently in transition from one assignment to another. I am no longer at my parishes, and in the fall I will begin working toward an STL (Sacred Theology License) in Liturgy at the Liturgical Institute in Mundelein, IL. Until then I am in residence at my home parish. During this transition time I have a little more time on my hands than normal, so I thought it would be good to resurrect this blog, and I can't think of a better day to do it than St. Benedict's feast day. So consider this blog live. Stay tuned for more.