Posted on Jul 30, 2020 in Church News, Homilies

2 August 2020 My mother’s only sibling, my aunt, was emotionally and mentally challenged all of her life. She was institutionalized when I was in grade school and then under the great reforms of Richard Nixon was “mainstreamed.” Mainstreaming for her has meant a dingy studio apartment in a bad section of the city in which she lived. The most notable thing about her was that she has a deep, perjuring anger/hostility towards all the members of her family. She would not let us get close to her, help her in any way.          ...

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Posted on Jul 23, 2020 in Church News, Homilies

26 July 2020 Rachel Naomi Remen is a Physician who has written a book: My Grandfather’s Blessings: Stories of Strength, Refuge and Belonging. Her grandfather was an Orthodox Rabbi and scholar. Once when she was four, he grandfather brought her a paper cup. She expected to find something special inside. It was full of dirt. Her grandfather filled a jug with water, took her and the cup and the jug of water to the window sill. Then he said: “If you promise to put some water in this cup every day, Just a little mind you, but do it every day, something may happen.” She promised, “Every day,”...

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Posted on Jul 16, 2020 in Church News, Homilies

19 July 2020 Fr. Tom Krieg was one of my associates at Newman. Tom was and is a rare character. In many ways he was just plain “holy,”                He was also a bit odd but when then hasn’t a truly holy person been odd.                He lives simply–never a fashion plate.                He lives without consuming a lot of the world’s goods.    He has simple pleasures....

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Posted on Jul 9, 2020 in Church News, Homilies

12 JULY 2020 About 25 years ago I paid my summer visit to my parents in Hatley.  My friend Mike came along. I believe there are two things which mark a Polish household: 1.  There is always more food set out for guests than could possibly be eaten. 2.  And you don’t leave the table until you’ve eaten it all. On this trip to Hatley I decided that I could politely refuse the food my mother would push. After all these years, I should know better. When mom came around, for the fourth time with the last of the new potatoes just dug from their garden for us, I said: “I’ve really had...

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Posted on Jul 2, 2020 in Church News, Homilies

5 July 2020 Ephesus is one of the best preserved of the classical Roman cities and was perhaps one of the highlights of my trip to Greece and Turkey. It grew to be the second largest city in the Roman Empire and had the second largest hospital in the then known world. The most amazing thing about that hospital though, is that in its known history, no one ever died there. The physicians had a 100% cure rate. How did they do it? Was this miraculous? Did they have cures known to them that we with all of our scientific knowledge don’t have? Did they have access to ancient herbal medicines that...

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Posted on Jun 25, 2020 in Church News, Homilies

28 JUNE 2020 At Newman our preparation program for First Eucharist included “The Gold Book.” It was a recognition that while some preparation was done in class more of it was done in the home. Each year I would read over the gold books which our children completed with their mothers and fathers. The gold books have places for the children to draw pictures of what they see when someone is baptized. Often there were squalling babies held up by their heels over a font and a bald man pouring water over their heads. There was a place for the children to draw what they see in church on Sunday....

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Posted on Jun 18, 2020 in Church News, Homilies

21 June 2020 Several summers ago a former student who now lives in the Cities, offered to take a group of us on a boat trip up and down the St. Croix. I had never been on the St. Croix so I said, “Yes.” My good friend Mike, also came along as well as several other former students. It was a good reunion and also a sad one. A couple of the students who used to be active at Newman, no longer go to church. We chugged up the St. Croix from Hastings, put in at Stillwater for lunch, and then up a little further, and then we turned around. Just as we’re approaching Hudson on the return trip, the...

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Posted on Jun 11, 2020 in Church News, Homilies

14 June 2020 There is a wonderful story about a man who lived quite an extraordinary life. He encountered one hardship after another. His wife died, his children never visited him. His house was destroyed by fire, he lost his job. Through it all he never became cynical, always remained cheerful, never returned evil for evil. Then he died. When he arrived at the pearly gates everyone in heaven turned out to meet him– The prosecuting angel stood up first, drew everyone’s attention, pointed his finger at the man, and then said in a weak voice: There’s nothing, no charges against him....

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