Sunday, December 28, 2008

Christmas Greetings

Merry Christmas to all of you out there, and happy Chanukah to my Jewish friends (although they're not likely to be reading this blog anyway). I may get off my duff and post some more soon. I have a Patristics class through Holy Apostles coming up in a few weeks, so that will be fodder for blogging.

If you are in the Treasure Valley, you might dial in to 790 KPSD this afternoon at 3:00 PM or this evening at 8:00 PM for "Faith with Father." You can also listen online at I was asked to sit in for someone as a studio audience member. Our rector, Fr. Henry Carmona, asks a number of questions, and we're called to respond. This is the first of two sessions we recorded, and I suspect I'll be asked to take part in more in the future. Anyway, please tune in.

Also, please keep my wife in your prayers. Surgery is eight days away.

Thursday, December 18, 2008

Forty Four

Forty-four years ago tonight, at a military hospital about 60 miles east of Boise, I came wailing and crying into the world. I have lived in three other states since then, tried and left several lives behind, had some experiences I wish I had forgone, and have had others that I remember fondly. I'm happy to be married, to have a wonderful wife, daughter, step-daughters and stepson, and two beautiful grandchildren.

By God's grace, I think I'm a better man than I was half a life ago. In whatever time I have left, I hope God will make me into the man he intended.

Monday, December 15, 2008

Barcelona 2008

Sorry for taking so long with this post. I'm in Lexington, Kentucky today doing some business training. Everyone is at lunch, and since I often don't eat lunch when I travel (to avoid the afternoon crash that often follows), I'm sitting here with little else to do.

I'll add most of the architectural shots without comment, since I don't recall the names of many of these buildings. A couple were designed by Gaudi, but others are just in and around the city. I shot many of these while I was on one of the bus tours. I bought a two-day pass, then promptly left the pass in my hotel room on the seond day (the one one which I would have actually used the pass extensively). Yes, I was annoyed. I could have gone back to the hotel and gotten the pass, but for some reason, I didn't. Can't explain why. Still kicking myself a little.

Same building from the side.

Here are some shots from various angles of Sagrada Familia.

UPDATE: Okay, a few more. Lexington, KY is pretty much frozen over. I'm really hoping things thaw a bit before my flight time tomorrow.

This monument, I think, is a tribute to a Catalunyan poet and friend of Gaudi's.

I've been trying to find an image online of this lovely little church. From the painting on this first image, I assumed it was dedicated to Sts. Peter and Paul. However, I haven't been able to find a church in Barcelona of that name.

Another church I can't name. Like many European cities, there's a Catholic church every hundred yards or so. This is probably more the case in Spain than many northern European countries, which retained its Catholic heritage well into the 20th century.

The last time I was in Barcelona, I failed to take photos of the interior of the cathedral. This time, I probably overdid it. However, there are so many beautiful altars in this cathedral that it's shame they aren't more well known.

Here's the high altar.

Below the main altar, in the crypt, is the tomb of Santa Eulalia.

I don't remember where I took this shot, but it's an awesome altar nonetheless.

I have to admit to an error of judgment. I thought it would be better to try to shoot the side altras from behind the protective bars. That was a mistake. Next time, I'll stick my camera through and get some good shots. Until then, I can only tell you that the side altars in the cathedral are incredible.

I think I still have some other shots on the camera that I'll post later.

UPDATE 2: Oh, almost forgot this monstrance that was on display in the cathedral museum. Wish I'd remembered to turn off the flash.

Also, when you go through the churches and cathedrals of Europe, you are truly treading sacred ground. Many of the graves are underfoot.

Thursday, December 11, 2008

Prayers for My Wife

If you would please add my wife (who sometimes comments here under the name St. Joan) to your prayer lists. She will be going into surgery in early January to have a myomectomy. The recovery period is 3 to 8 weeks. I have no doubt she'll bounce back quickly. She just seems to do that.

Peripherally, this situation has developed since we moved to a high-deductible insurance policy (on which I cover all premiums, as a self-employed person). We will be having a tight winter and spring financially.

Wednesday, December 10, 2008


Hi. Just thought I'd drop by to water the blog and say hello.

Don't have much to write, but you can always go check out Patrick Madrid's new blog. He even has this catchy bug you can put in your sidebar.

Yes, I suspect he's a silly man.