Wednesday, October 28, 2009

I'm home free!

Deacon Greg points to this article in Notre Dame magazine, which tells us at last the order by which people are admitted to Heaven.  The first tier of saints (with my emphasis):
To be admitted without review by committee: children under the age of 12, sixth-grade teachers, the mothers of triplets, janitors, nuns (all religions), nurses, all other mothers, loggers, policemen with more than 10 years of service, Buddhists (see Appendix A), bass players in rock bands, librettists, gardeners, cartographers, eighth-grade teachers, cellists, farriers, veterinarians, magicians, compass-makers, firemen and firewomen, rare-book-room librarians, cobblers, anyone from the former Gilbert Islands in the South Pacific, breakfast cooks in diners, philologists, proofreaders, administrative assistants and secretaries, sauciers, mapmakers, cartwrights, cartoonists, essayists, people who manufacture thimbles, and Presbyterians (see Appendix B).
I knew this line of work would pay off somehow.

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

It's been a while...

...since i posted a sunset picture.

This sort of thing is why I love Mark Shea's writing.

Being reminded that Christmas is, theologically speaking, not a KODAK Moment but the spiritual equivalent of D-Day, when the Son stormed the beaches of Satanically-occupied earth under heavy fire and began the long struggle to free us from bondage that would culminate in his crucifixion? Not a bad thing, I think.
Nicely put, sir. as is his, "But on the other hand...":
it seems to me that the Church has real wisdom in setting aside certain moments for feasting and others for fasting and that jumbling them up is probably not wise.

Monday, October 19, 2009

My School!!

I'm little-kid-with-a-drawing-look-mom-look-mom proud of the school I work at.  Our development office put this together.  It's a fair snapshot of the remarkable place we have, though I don't think anything short of a documentary would really capture the wonder of it.

(For my fam: yeah, there's one shot of me in there, and I'd guess about a fourth of those photos are mine.)

Particles from the future prevent their own existence. Seriously.

In a nerdy sci-fi-come-to-life kind of way.  And in a God kind of way. And just generally.
H/T to Mark Shea.

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

The Gym Floor Moment

[I wrote this a couple of weeks ago in my private journal (Yes, I type my journal.  I often misspeak at first, and I like being able to revise until I'm actually saying what I mean.  In fact, I often discover what I mean in that process.), and decided it was the sort of thing I could post here -- heck, maybe even should.]

Today's nugget from my "St. Teresa of Avila for Every Day" book:

"God so places himself in the interior of that soul that when it returns to itself, it can in no way doubt that it was in God and God was in it."

I don't think I've ever talked about the moment I met God, to anyone, ever, and I'm not really going to here, either.  When the subject comes up, I tend to say things like:
  • "I had one of those 'conversion experiences' people talk about."
  • "God just shook me and made me listen."
  • "Well, it involved adoration and lying face-down on a gym floor in Ohio."
  • "Something happened."

I leave it at that.  If people try to get more from me, I shrug and say I can't really explain it.  This is true, in two senses.  One, I'm not sure I'm ready, even over six years later, to talk about it.  It's far too intimate a thing to chat about over coffee.

Two, I've never found the words to describe what happened that night.  It was utterly out of the realm of all my experiences up to that point, as unprecedented to me as a daisy in the arctic -- imagine suddenly seeing the brilliance of the noon sun when before that you've only ever seen fireflies. 

But I can say this, simply and to the point: in the very early morning hours of June 22nd, 2003, I knew God in a way I had not on the afternoon of the 21st.  In fact, I had not really known Him at all before that.

Imagine breathing for the first time and only then discovering there was something other than the feeling of drowning.

Even now, more than six years and a lot of valleys later, I have not forgotten one particle of the experience, a moment so powerful it wiped out all my life before that; before I knew Him, before Love overcame me and I found myself with no alternative but to bumble my way desperately forward.  It was my defining moment.

I am agonizingly aware of how far I have to go.  Certainly I am no saint and my experience pales compared to Teresa's.  The Gym Floor Moment, though, has framed all the rest of my life, the meaning of my existence, my purpose for being.  And I -- a girl with no certainty about anyone or anything on this earth at all -- have never, not once, ever, doubted it at all.

I cannot deny the sun's existence even as I feel it pouring life into me.

Time's Quotes of the Day Often Amuse Me

I will be in Chicago this week, and I think I will have to find this Felony Franks place.  Be honest.  That's awesome.

Political pundit type: "Hey, SNL, quit picking on Obama!" You can't laud Tina Fey's Sarah Palin and get all pouty when Obama gets his turn.  Chill.

Not that I could have ever afforded it anyway, but this guy is never getting a dime of my shopping business: "No one wants to see a round woman".  To use the quasi vulgar vernacular of my generation, WTF, dude?  Has he seen classical art?  Of course, I don't think he's someone I would have taken seriously or shopped from to begin with -- fingerless leather gloves and a formal jacket over jeans with a tacky wash?  Pass.

Monday, October 12, 2009

Harvard Ditches Cookies... oh, and a Library, Too

This article talks about some of the cuts being made at Harvard.  Between the litany of amenities lost, including cookies at faculty meetings and hot breakfasts in the dining hall, is this "by the way" line (emphasis mine):
“Everyone is worried,” said George Hayward, a junior who lives on a part of campus, the Quad, that lost its library to the cuts. “It could be anything next; nobody really knows.”

Perhaps this is the only substantive academic cut -- the article doesn't specify one way or the other -- but it seems to me that closing an entire library at an institute of high learning should merit more alarm than the potential loss of weekday shuttles that run until almost 4 a.m.

I am the last to belittle the difficulties hoisted upon so many Americans by this recession, but at the same time I am thoroughly convinced some people could learn a great deal about the meaning of sacrifice.  Actually, come to think of it, the legions of oblivious well-to-dos who find hardship in their inability to have whatever thy want the moment they want it are an affront to the determination and dignity of people who are working hard just to keep a roof over their families' heads.

Friday, October 2, 2009

Multimedia message

That's a crowd full of my former students, esteemed peers, and roommates at a high school football game. I love my life.

Multimedia message

I miss my tiny siblings.Who wouldn't miss these kids?