JULY . . .Happy New Year, everyone! Blessings and laughter to you in barrels.
Barack Obama, having secured North and South America, flies to Germany without using an airplane and gives a major speech -- speaking English and German simultaneously -- to 200,000 mesmerized Germans, who immediately elect him chancellor, prompting France to surrender.
Wednesday, December 31, 2008
Tuesday, December 30, 2008
- My 2nd VIDES formation camp, this time having a clue
- My 2nd semester teaching, still without a clue
- The St. Vitus Fools, our drama club, and our production of "Looking Glass Land, which was a sucess largely because no one could tell none of us had a clue.
- More nuns, all indescribably wonderful.
- Leaving the nuns, with a full heart and some tears...
- ...and arriving at Notre Dame to start ACE...
- ...where I met some of the most incredible people ever, and certainly the heaviest concentration of awesome I've encountered yet
- My second convent full of community mates, this time unconsecrated my own age
- My second year of teaching, with a little bit of a clue
- And meanwhile, my family continued to be awesome and weird
Please note: There are two people who were as important in my life this year as anyone else, and more important than most, even though I only saw them once in April for a few hours each (hence the painful dearth of pictures and sinful under representation). You know who you are. This year would not have been nearly as wonderful without your constant long-distance support, laughter, and presence. Thank you. I love you more than I know how to say.
All the pictures in the movie are available here, should you be inclined to take a more leisurely look.
Thursday, December 25, 2008
Merry Christmas, Dear Readers!
My life flows on in endless song
above earth's lamentation.
I hear the real, though far-off hymn
that hails a new creation.
No storm can shake my inmost calm
while to that rock I'm clinging.
Since Love is Lord of heaven and earth,
how can I keep from singing?
Through all the tumult and the strife
I hear that music ringing.
It sounds an echo in my soul!
How can I keep from singing?
What though the tempest loudly roars,
I hear the truth; it liveth.
What though the darkness round me close,
songs in the night it giveth
While tyrants tremble, sick with fear,
and hear their death knells ringing;
When friends rejoice both far and near,
how can I keep from singing?
Thursday, December 18, 2008
2. It was sent by a friend to me and several common friends with this note:
"Makes me think of Andie. Every time. (Get to 1:56 and I think you'll understand)"
I can't deny it, I do get pretty excited when I hear this song.
Wednesday, December 17, 2008
Friday, December 12, 2008
I does, in fact, and it's finally cool enough here that I just might.
I related news, for reasons unknown to me, YouTube has decided to make it impossible for me to copy the code to embed videos. What did I do to invite your scorn, YouTube?
Thursday, December 11, 2008
His most well-knwon prayer, and a favorite of mine:
My Lord God,I have no idea where I am going.
I do not see the road ahead of me.
I cannot know for certain where it will end.
Nor do I really know myself,
and the fact that I think that I am following your will
does not mean that I am actually doing so.
But I believe that the desire to please you does in fact please you.
And I hope I have that desire in all that I am doing.
I hope that I will never do anything apart from that desire.
And I know that if I do this you will lead me by the right road
though I may know nothing about it.
Therefore will I trust you always
though I may seem to be lost and in the shadow of death.
I will not fear,for you are ever with me,
and you will never leave me to face my perils alone.
I love ACE.
The rest of the article is here. it has a pretty good summary of the ACE program, in case you're curious exactly what I'm up to, and short (very short) list of some of ACE's associated programs and initiatives.
At retreat, Fr. Scully emphasized that he was getting this award on behalf of all the people who do and have ever done work with the Alliance for Catholic Education. When I signed up for this thing, I thought, "Hey, grad school AND service!". I am realizing more and more that ACE is a lot bigger than that. It is, in fact, a movement unto itself, and I'm profoundly excited that I'm part of it.
Father Scully receives Presidential Citizens MedalRev. Timothy R. Scully, C.S.C., professor of political science and director of the Institute for Educational Initiatives (IEI) at the University of Notre Dame, received a 2008 Presidential Citizens Medal in an Oval Office ceremony held Wednesday (Dec. 10).
By: Julie Hail Flory
Date: December 10, 2008
One of the highest honors the president can confer upon a civilian – second only to the Presidential Medal of Freedom – the Presidential Citizens Medal recognizes U.S. citizens who have performed exemplary deeds of service for the nation. Since its establishment by executive order in 1969, some 100 people have received the award.
Tuesday, December 2, 2008
What that means is that while our internet is still technically there, it's useless for anything other than basic HTML e-mail checking. I can only do most internet activities from school.
While this is a good thing for the amount of work I will get done at home, it is a bad thing for the amount of blogging I am able to do. I'm sorry. This is just how it has to be. It's not you, it's me.
Thursday, November 27, 2008
Monday, November 24, 2008
It's funny, in the parental genetic roulette, we ended up very physically distinct from each other. I was never a particularly teeny child, but she has been utterly minute from day one; my dark curly hay stack of hair could hardly be more different than her well-behaved straight locks; likewise her multicolored eyes to my dark solid irises; she has her mom's nose, I have our dad's. I don't think people look at us and say, "Ah! You are sisters!"
Sadly, she does seem to have my teeth (which I eventually grew into, with the help of orthodontia, so there's hope for her yet).
I do believe that people spend time with us and see there is clearly a common root between us. I mean, really, how could two such bizarre characters exist otherwise, if they were not sprung from the same place? At her age, I was equally obsessed with the written word, as great of a dork, comparably creative, and very nearly as weird. She's gaining on me in her introspective tendencies. Every time I go home, our mom makes some comment about how she's more and more like a mini-Andie every day.
Fish Face was born about eight weeks premature. The night before she was born, I dreamed our dad came into my room, woke me up, and told me not to go to school in the morning. He was taking Mom to the hospital and would call me to check in regularly (I was nearly thirteen and quite used to being home alone with my younger brother for a while). In the morning, I told my mom about it, and she laughed and said something along the lines of, "Well, let's hope that doesn't happen. It's too soon."
The next night, I had the exact same dream, like a movie being replayed. I awoke in the morning long after I should have left for school and panicked until I found Alex blissfully chowing down on cereal and watching cartoons. And I realized the second time, the dream had not been a dream at all.
I dreamed my sister's birth a day before it happened, and two months earlier than it should have. Make of that what you will.
There is something special about my sister. And I know everyone says that about children they love, but there is truly something very particular about her. If I believed in reincarnation, I would say she is the oldest soul I've ever met, and yet also the most hopeful and searching one. She has always been so, from her earliest days spent in an incubator. My ties to her are not stronger or deeper than those to my brothers; they are thicker. They transmit more.
Mark Shea has posted a few items lately about odd occurrences that can only be explained by the Holy Spirit, which reminded me of that dream, which got me pondering Melissa herself. I am always in awe of the incredible gifts I've been given in my life when I stop to think on them, and even more so the ones that just keep growing and giving more and more. My siblings all fall under that category. Such wondrous things are not made by our kind, but by the One who made us.
Little update: Mr. Shea just posted an e-mail I sent him about my dream in response to his posts.
Thursday, November 20, 2008
I wonder if any other saint's relic has been brought into the cold black beyond our atmosphere. Is Therese our first extraterrestrial saint?
NEW CANEY, Texas, NOV. 20, 2008 (Zenit.org).- St. Thérèse wrote that she wanted to be a missionary on every continent simultaneously and reach the most remote islands -- now her dream has extended to space flight.
The Carmelite community of New Caney, Texas, enjoys the friendship of Colonel Ron Garan, who was on the May 31-June 14 Discovery shuttle mission.
Before heading into space, Garan had called the women religious to request their prayer for the voyage, and he told them he could take some small item into space on behalf of the community.
The sisters reported that the words of St. Thérèse came to mind: "I have the vocation of an apostle. I would like to travel over the whole earth to preach your name and to plant your glorious cross on infidel soil. But oh, my beloved, one mission would not be enough for me, I would want to preach the Gospel on all five continents simultaneously and even to the most remote isles. I would be a missionary, not for a few years but from the beginning of creation until the consummation of the ages."
The Carmelites gave the astronaut a relic of St. Thérèse for his flight.
Now, they report, she has traveled 5,735,643 miles around the earth for 14 days at 17,057 miles an hour. Meanwhile, the sisters commended the world to her intercession.
Tuesday, November 18, 2008
I am not a movie franchise purist. I am a fan of good movies. Most of these recent series revamps/reboots (the new Batmans and the latest Bond movies, for example) have perhaps not been entirely true to the legacy of their predecessors, but they have tended to be darn good movies. I hope and suspect such is the case with J.J. Abram's treatment of my most beloved Star Trek series.
I'd be very interested to find out how old she actually is.
Monday, November 17, 2008
"The low temperature in Harlingen dropped to 39 degrees; which was the coldest morning since February 1st of this year. "
I don't think I need to comment on that.
Saturday, November 15, 2008
I knew all the people on the left in the picture below as many as four years before starting ACE; the people on the right are fellow ACErs who know the left-side folks somehow. Some of the connections aren't too surprising -- if you happen to go to the same school and both go to Mass, odds are you'll know each other at least by name -- but some are really random, like the twins going to grade school with another girl in my VIDES group. All in all, I think it's pretty nifty.
- Andrew is from a town about 40 minutes from my family in California and went to Gonzaga in Spokane, where I spent a good chunk of my childhood.
- Steph is from the Seattle area, where I spent an even bigger chunk of my time.
- Savannah is from Colorado, where I also lived, and lived with her cousin in Seattle for a semester when we were in high school.
Friday, November 14, 2008
Thursday, November 13, 2008
Thomas D. Jones is a Catholic who went into space. I'd like to be one of those. He writes a reflection of the experience worth reading, but this is my favorite part:
I apologize to whoever I got that link from in the first place, because I've forgotten where exactly that was.
Our silent reflection was interrupted by a sudden burst of dazzling white light. The sun had risen (as it did 16 times each day) just as we finished Communion, and now its pure radiance streamed through Endeavour’s cockpit windows and bathed us in its warmth. To me, this was a beautiful sign, God’s gentle touch confirming our union with him.
I rolled away from my crewmates, unable to stem the tears evoked by that singular sunrise. My gaze turned to the overhead windows and the Pacific Ocean, the dawn lighting its surface in a rich, limitless blue.
I called out to Kevin and Sid, “Look at that ocean—what an incredible color!” They both turned and drank in hues unmatched by the palette of any human artist. After a moment, Kevin said simply, “It’s the blue of the Virgin’s veil, Tom.” He was right. There were no other words for that vision out the window.
Meanwhile, back in the farthest reaches of space, as I understand it we have our first pictures of planets in another star system (correct me if I'm wrong). I think that's pretty cool.
Wednesday, November 12, 2008
Tuesday, November 11, 2008
Sunday, November 9, 2008
and the holy guardian angels watch over you
and keep you in their safe protection,
and the blessing of God almighty,
the father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit,
descend upon you and remain with you always.
Many more years of health and happiness, Dad. I love you!
Friday, November 7, 2008
Thursday, November 6, 2008
Tuesday, November 4, 2008
Friday, October 31, 2008
Monday, October 27, 2008
Wednesday, October 8, 2008
"Alright, so an alien is something foreign or from another planet, and Mexicans get called aliens all the time, so what we drew is a Mexican sombrero abducting a person."
Thursday, October 2, 2008
What?! Get outta here! No way! No way. I'm both shocked and amazed.
Earliest Reference Describes Christ as 'Magician'
Jennifer Viegas, Discovery News
Oct. 1, 2008 -- A team of scientists led by renowned French marine
archaeologist Franck Goddio recently announced that they have found a bowl,
dating to between the late 2nd century B.C. and the early 1st century A.D., that
is engraved with what they believe could be the world's first known reference to
If the word "Christ" refers to the Biblical Jesus Christ, as is speculated, then the discovery may provide evidence that Christianity and paganism at times intertwined in the ancient world.
Also rich: the headline seems to imply this might undermine the whole "Son of God" thing, which is just silly. That a pagan saw (or heard of) miraculous healings and such and thought, "Hm, magic!" is not at all unlikely. It also doesn't even put a dent in the Truth of the thing.
Recognize it? It's a wearable mini version of Notre Dame's most distinguished landmark:
I love it.
Monday, September 29, 2008
Saturday, September 27, 2008
Friday, September 26, 2008
So I removed myself from the entire thing. I just don't talk politics. When it comes up in conversation, I quietly leave the room.
Recently, the Catholic blogosphere has been passing around the Litany of St. Thomas More, and after seeing it on at least three different sites, it suddenly dawned on me.
Duh, Andrea. You should be praying.
Rather than simply refuse to play, I ought to be praying about this unfortunate state of affairs, and for more people like Thomas More, who was martyred for the faith and refused to compromise his integrity, to get into the game.
Litany of St. Thomas More, Martyr and Patron Saint of Statesmen, Politicians and LawyersO Glorious St. Thomas More, Patron of Statesmen, Politicians, Judges and Lawyers, your life of prayer and penance and your zeal for justice, integrity and firm principle in public and family life led you to the path of martyrdom and sainthood. Intercede for our Statesmen, Politicians, Judges and Lawyers, that they may be courageous and effective in their defense and promotion of the sanctity of human life - the foundation of all other human rights. We ask this through Christ our Lord.
V. Lord, have mercy
R. Lord have mercy
V. Christ, have mercy
R. Christ have mercy
V. Lord, have mercy
R. Lord have mercy
V. Christ hear us
R. Christ, graciously hear us
V. St. Thomas More, Saint and Martyr,
R. Pray for us (Repeat after each invocation)
St. Thomas More, Patron of Statesmen, Politicians and Lawyers
St. Thomas More, Patron of Justices, Judges and Magistrates
St. Thomas More, Model of Integrity and Virtue in Public and Private Life
St. Thomas More, Servant of the Word of God and the Body and Blood of Christ
St. Thomas More, Model of Holiness in the Sacrament of Marriage
St. Thomas More, Teacher of his Children in the Catholic Faith
St. Thomas More, Defender of the Weak and the Poor
St. Thomas More, Promoter of Human Life and Dignity
V.Lamb of God, you take away the sin of the world
R.Spare us O Lord
V.Lamb of God, you take away the sin of the world
R.Graciously hear us O Lord
V.Lamb of God, you take away the sin of the world
R.Have mercy on us
Let us pray:
A long time ago, I noticed an odd phenomenon with my littlest brother and sister. However much I adore them in their present form -- and I do, my friends, roommates, students, and vague acquaintances get rather sick of hearing my endless stories of how stinkin' funny and brilliant they are -- there are times when I look at them in their ten and eight year old bodies and think, "I miss baby you".
I think parents can relate to this, and other way-bigger siblings. I am by no means as important in Melissa and Charlie's lives as our parents are, but because of our significant age gap (about thirteen and fifteen years, respectively), I have always been more of a caretaker than the typical older sister (like I was for Alex, who is only four year behind me). Along with that, I clearly and distinctly remember loving the ever-living daylights out of them from the moment I saw them, especially when they smiled at me like that or drove me up the wall by repeatedly sitting on the dishwasher when I was trying to load it and laughing at me when I yelled at them.
They were other, different individuals then. Both of them have always been busting with their own personalities, and they still blow me over daily, but when they were babies there was just something... different. Almost magical, if you'll excuse the sap. Maybe they were just unbearably cute.
And now they're big, and smart-mouthed, and clever as all get out, and I am more glad every single day I have them. But there are moments, not at all uncommon, when I wish I could rewind them and have them be the teeny little pudge balls they once were, mischief and glee and pure life flying like sparks from a sparkler from their eyes and laughs.
Thursday, September 25, 2008
It's a funny thing with middle schoolers. They are, for the most part, not even quite on the outskirts of abstract thought. Of course, that's part of why the language arts are so important. A huge part of my job is to teach them how to think abstractly; heck, that such a thing exists. I, having been out of that stage of cognitive development for almost a decade now, have a fair amount of trouble figuring out how in the blazes to get them past the concrete (this is why you do basically the same thing in English class from 6th grade up -- it's really tricky stuff, and it takes a lot of practice).
So when I show them a poem that you and I, Dear Reader, instantly recognize as an ode to that deep, unspeakable, intimate love that exists in a parent's heart for a child, 8th graders read, "The kid's dad lit a match to check on him and he had a happy look on his face."
Alright kids, let's look at this a little a little closer:
He wore, it seemed to his small son,After reading these six lines very slowly with deliberate annunciation, and a lot of hinting and prodding, I got these responses:
A bare heart on his hidden one,
A heart that gave out such a glow
No son awake could bear to know.
It showed a look upon a face
Too tender for the day to trace.
- "Maybe the dad is dead and he's seeing a ghost."
- "Maybe he died but the son still feels like he's watching over him." (Give her credit for going beyond the surface.)
- "Why doesn't he just tell his son he loves him?"
- "Maybe the son is crazy and the dad was sad because the son is crazy." (Give him credit for making a personal connection.)
Wednesday, September 24, 2008
To think, in middle and high school I detested poetry.
The Secret Heart
by Robert Tristin Coffin
Across the years he could recall
His father one way best of all.
In the stillest hour of night
The boy awakened to a light.
Half in dreams, he saw his sire
With his great hands full of fire.
The man had struck a match to see
If his son slept peacefully.
He held his palms each side the spark
His love had kindled in the dark.
His two hands were curved apart
In the semblance of a heart.
He wore, it seemed to his small son,
A bare heart on his hidden one,
A heart that gave out such a glow
No son awake could bear to know.
It showed a look upon a face
Too tender for the day to trace.
One instant, it lit all about,
And then the secret heart went out.
But it shone long enough for one
To know that hands held up the sun.
Dad sent me a truck full of scans of old pictures. This one makes me miss my siblings (including Charlie, my fellow bookend, though he was probably inside drooling when this was taken) very, very, very much.
This one, on the other hand, just makes me laugh out loud.
Tuesday, September 23, 2008
My kiddos got a little mixed up. The Election Collection was released today, but it turns out the 30th Anniversary edition with "Every (School House Rock) Song Ever Created" has been out for years -- since 2002! How did I not know this? What a sad vigil I've kept over the latest in instructional media. Shame on me.
One of my experiments has been assigning a student to lead prayer once or twice a week. A few have gone "free style", some have read scripture, and one had us recite the Apostle's Creed. Most have gone the YouTube route. If they use a video, they introduce it and explain why they feel it's good for prayer, and those few sentences -- even though it's like pulling molars to get them out -- reveal an impressive understanding of the faith for 7th and 8th graders.
Some of the videos they've used so far this year:
What About Now? - Daughtry ("Embedding disabled by request")
The Lifehouse "Everything" Skit
Granted, they're not winning any prizes for "videos no one's seen yet", but hey, it's middle school. We're working up to originality.
Monday, September 22, 2008
Two Mondays in a row now, I have come in to find the room's AC on full blast (I turn it off before I leave for the weekend) and my desks totally out of order.
Those not in the teaching profession may not fully appreciate this, but especially in the middle grades, order is everything. Even if my lesson is abysmally ineffective (can't win 'em all), if I can keep order I consider the day a success. My desks are the way they are for a reason. Were I to let my 7th graders walk into the room as it was when I walked in, chaos and confusion would erupt. So I was obliged to spend ten minutes putting my desks back (while I lost feeling in my hands because the air was so cold).
I'm not taking this lying down. This Friday, before I leave, I will write them a note.
Yup. I mean business.
Saturday, September 20, 2008
Here's a pacticularly unique tradtion I hadn't heard of until I got there this summer: in the stuent section at the football games -- I don't know if you knew, but Domers are pretty serious about football -- with every score, a group of people will pick up one person and do "push ups".
Here's how it looks up close.
And here's how it looks from afar when the whole lot of them are doing it.
Two of my housemates teach at St. Joe's, which has its homecoming game Friday night. The St. Joe fight song just happens to be exactly the same as the Notre Dame fight song, and three of the six housmates present were ND alum. So, when St. Joe scored and the band started playing the fight song, naturally they all decided we should do push ups. Being the smallest one present not wearing a skirt, and being totally game, I soon found myself the object of a lot of odd stares as my housemates threw me in the air nine and then twenty-five times (we missed a touchdown), counting as we went.
I am now truly and undeniably an Notre Dame student.
This month's book order offers the "Classic Goosebumps set", twenty-some of the "best of Goosebumps".
False! The set doesn't include Night of the Living Dummy, Phantom of the Auditorium, or Monster Blood. What?! You can't have ANY Goosebumps set that doesn't include Monster Blood!
That's it. I'm writing a letter to Scholastic.
Image taken from Reader Beware: The Goosebumps Blog
Friday, September 12, 2008
Shall I compare thee to a Summer's day?
Thou art more lovely and more temperate:
Rough winds do shake the darling buds of May,
And Summer's lease hath all too short a date:
Sometime too hot the eye of heaven shines,
And oft' is his gold complexion dimm'd;
And every fair from fair sometime declines,
By chance or nature's changing course untrimm'd:
But thy eternal Summer shall not fade
Nor lose possession of that fair thou owest;
Nor shall Death brag thou wanderest in his shade,
When in eternal lines to time thou growest:
So long as men can breathe, or eyes can see,
So long lives this, and this gives life to thee.
"How do we know he wasn't talking about a dog or a cat or something?""Good question. You tell me, class.""Well, it's romantic.""I don't read this and think 'romance'. I wouldn't want to be compared to a tree.""Do 'thee' and 'thou' mean 'you'?""Yes.""Then why didn't he just say 'you'?""But summer isn't nice or pretty. It sucks.""Yes, in Brownsville.""Well, where was Shakespeare from?""Miss, was Shakespeare dyslexic or something?"
Thursday, September 11, 2008
Me: That is is a good line.
Charlie: Well, in important things. Not like race cars and stuff.
Me: What are important things?
Chucky: Weeeeeell, you know... like insurance. All that financial stuff.
Tuesday, August 26, 2008
As to the question when human life begins, the answer to which is above Mr. Obama's pay grade, oh, let's go on a little tear. You know why they call it birth control? Because it's meant to stop a birth from happening nine months later. We know when life begins. Everyone who ever bought a pack of condoms knows when life begins.
To put it another way, with conception something begins. What do you think it is? A car? A 1948 Buick?
If you want to argue whether legal abortion is morally defensible, have at it and go to it, but Mr. Obama's answers here seemed to me strange and disturbing.
Related but different, the DNC is a load of horse manure in at least on respect, probably others (which is not to say the RNC is a repository of truth and candor).
Thursday, August 7, 2008
You know that saying, life intervenes? I might be making that up, but even in such case, you're clever enough to get what I mean. Anyway, that's my excuse. The last couple months of school and getting ready to leave the convent and go to Notre Dame sucked up most of my time in April and May, and ACE sucked up every waking moment in June and July.
A brief summary of my first ACE summer:
ACE has articulated the philosphy of education I've been dancing around for years: education is a social justice issue, because education is a right to all people because of their God-given dignity. Moreover, education is about the whole kid and not just their little brains. These were things I knew, but I don't think I'd articulated it, and ceetainly hadn't met so many people who agree.
My fellow ACErs are the greatest "quantity of quality" of people I've ever encountered. I have always been blessed with remarkable, incredible, astounding friends, make no mistake, but the sheer number of "wow" people I met was awesome. One rarely encounters this caliber of people, and never in such numbers.
The Church I fawn over so much is more than the mystical, mysterious body I usually focus on. It's a living, breathing institution, and I'm trying to shift my perspective to see that better, day to day.
More will come out in the wash, I'm sure.
I'll be in Brownsville with my community Tuesday night. Teaching starts August 22.
Wednesday, August 6, 2008
Tuesday, August 5, 2008
Sunday, August 3, 2008
Saturday, July 26, 2008
Wednesday, July 23, 2008
Monday, July 21, 2008
And you said i know that this will hurt,
But if i don't break your heart things will just get worse
This God thing gets more and more complicated all the time, sometimes everyday. Where once it seemed sufficient to feel joy in His presence and to be content with my life, now the notion begins to creep into my mind that the Lord of Abraham is not all about brownies and hugs. I "knew" that, we all "know" that, but it seems most of us have this concept that when hard times come, God's role is to shoo them away, to make them not so, to blink them out of existence because He is the God of all Goodness and Love. His job is to carry us through to the good times again.
A few months ago I would have said "Well... yeah, of course", but now I'm beginning to wonder if there isn't a flaw in the attitude, the thinking that that's based on. I don't doubt for a moment that God's ultimate plan for us is to be "happy" (although that's an incredibly insufficient word for the kind of freedom and joy we're promised), to be with Him in Heaven and just celestial choir our brains out. While on Earth, however, it seems everyone wants "happy" now. Which is fine, and most of us get it. The general attitude towards suffering seems to be "God will lead me through this, and after it I will be better for Him". The object is to get it over with and go on being "happy", and I'd say for 98% of our lives, that's more or less accurate.
Maybe, though, sometimes God is not in the process, He's not there getting you "over it". Perhaps once in a long while, He isn't the least bit interested in making us feel better. None of that "footprints in the sand" sentimentality; instead, God is in the suffering itself. It may be that in the time we think we most need rescue, when we feel our darkest hour yet is bearing down on us and we are most willing to be plucked from harm, that He instead stands by and says, "No. I'm not getting you out of this one. You're going to sit right there and it's going to hurt like hell, because this is what you need right now."
It's like spiritual chemo: the chemo itself yields the results, not the process of surviving it. It's excruciating and the side effects make you wonder if it's worth it at all, but somewhere in you, a cancer is slowly dying. And God never abandons us, even when we're so hurt that in prayer, we can only ponder our anger. He throws at us the raging storm or the blazing fire and makes no efforts to defend us from the pain -- but He's there. "You will fall apart," He promises, "but I will not let you fall away, and in this sorrow, you will be better."
Tuesday, July 15, 2008
Monday, July 14, 2008
My reasons are several:
1) It's funny, objectively.
2) It's Notre Dame, of which I am now a student, so go Irish!
3) That kid, the leprechaun, is a year ahead of me in the ACE program and I played basketball against him yesterday. Well, let me rephrase that: I ran around the court like a headless chicken while he and his team ran circles around me and made baskets.
"The button" she refers to is the chat option on Gmail, and the rest refers to my express banning of the use of this "Baby Net Yak" when she writes to me.
Date: Mon, Jul 14, 2008 at 9:55 AM
Subject: it works!
Tuesday, July 8, 2008
My first day here at Notre Dame, I went and sat by the tabernacle in the Basilica of the Sacred Heart for a while. There was a priest across the aisle from me. Suddenly, he dropped to his knees on the ground. A sister had come in with the Blessed Sacrament to repose in the tabernacle. I followed his lead, thinking "I'm in a totally different place than I've ever been before."
Appreciation and love for the Eucharist are increasingly paramount in my mind.
"Love is not affectionate feeling, but a steady wish for the loved person's ultimate good as far as it can be obtained."
Monday, July 7, 2008
To my St. Teresa of Avila medal, my constant companion: thanks for the memories and weird tan lines. You will be missed.
Tuesday, July 1, 2008
I admit it, family. I go to bars.
I go to loud, crowded, gross, stifling bars, and I flail around like a fool.
Whew. Feels good to go public. Anyway.
In undergrad, I went rather infrequently because the crowd that frequented most of the bars in Delaware was not a crowd I wanted to be jammed into a tight space with. One of the beautiful things about the social side of ACE if that we all tend to go to the same places, so I can go, insert myself in a crowd of known, trusted, and not-creepy people, and dance like a fool, carefree.
These are just a few (I have a play list of more than twenty) of the songs that make the entire mob of people scream, sing along with full off-key voices, and dance like idiots. I will provide no explanation or justification. Make your own conclusions.
Monday, June 30, 2008
Sunday, June 29, 2008
I have a degree in secondary education, and I've had several people ask me since I got here if I feel like I'm learning anything or if I feel like I'm taking the same classes over. The answers to those questions are yes and no, respectively.
As far as I know I'm the only one in my cohort with a degree in education. My background has given me an edge here, yes, but not in the ways I thought (worried) it might -- I don't feel like I'm repeating anything. My cohorts are processing a lot more new information than I am, but honestly most of them are as good or better than I am at the method of planning and class curriculum development we use here.
It's like a remix. I know this tune and its parts, I know what the point is, but the beat and the sound are different, meaning I have to relearn the movements. In this, my cohorts have an edge over me: they're not breaking any old habits.
We've been in class for four weeks now, starting week five tomorrow, and I can safely say that I will be a smarter, better teacher when I come out of this. I like the perspective and the philosophy they work with here. We're reading different authors than the ones I got to in undergrad, and having the background allows me to compare, contrast, evaluate, and call B.S. on parts while recognizing the value in other parts.
It's like, you know, like all of a sudden I'm like a -- what's that called? -- like a thinking adult-ish like person thingy. Or at least I was until I wrote that sentence.
For whatever reason God chose to make man as he is--limited and suffering and subject to sorrows and death--he had the honesty and courage to take his own medicine. Whatever game he is playing with his creation, he has kept his own rules and played fair. He can exact nothing from man that he has not exacted from himself. He has himself gone through the whole human experience, from the trivial irritations of family life and the cramping restrictions of hard work and lack of money to the worst horrors of pain and humiliation, defeat, despair, and death. When he was a man, he played the man. He was born in poverty and died in disgrace and thought it well worthwhile.Dorothy Sayers
Friday, June 13, 2008
My blogging purpose is temporarily squelched, but I somehow suspect I'll still find the odd item to prattle on about.
You Dear Readers who are not my immediate family, please say a prayer or six for their safety and sanity.