And . . .

Adoringly, bend the knee

While we own the Mystery.


Back When . . .

I was young, dumb, and the rest of that trivial, rhyming phrase . . .

I made some extra bucks “pressing plastic.”  I had never sampled the product, and being where I was might just now be getting out of jail.  But one night, I crumbled some of what I had been pressing into my meershaum pipe I bought as a curiosity item being in Turkey and all, and put this on the Dual.  I didn’t make enough to own a Thorens.

It was my best buzz ever.  And playing it again, even knowing the song’s origins, takes me way back when.  When Felix and his bride (who later terminated his life and got off! -amazingly) first put it before LW, he was very dubious about doing it in concert.  Of course, now, he loves it.

It is my fave “long version, lead guitar” piece – of the many I love.

Welding and Such . . .

I have a particular liking for the Book of Micah – most certainly the glorious Christmas prophecy of Micah 5:2 –

“But you, Bethlehem Ephrathah, though you be little among the thousands of Judah, yet out of you shall He come forth unto me that is to be ruler in Israel; whose goings forth have been from of old, from everlasting.” 

But in this Season of Lent, I like Chapter 7, because it digs at the heart of our sinfulness and failures, and yet, concludes with a wonderful promise of the totality of forgiveness in verse 19:

“He will again have compassion upon us; he will tread our iniquities under foot; and thou wilt cast all their sins into the depths of the sea.”


I am not attempting the homiletical task in writing this.  No “Amen” at the end as in that endeavor, but even as I key those words, the thought occurred – a sermon is but the effort to make known that which must be known in eternal considerations, and often is not.  In any case, my motivation for writing this day is a piece written today by my physically distant friend Francis who, when he gets in the mood, reminds me of what I told him – that he could have well had another life-long vocation as a WCW.  I suggest you read the whole thing – it is really quite good!

In it, he has a number of “money quotes,” as I like to call them.  The whole piece is an apologetic in the full theological sense of the term.  It should hit many where they live, so to speak.  His first point is a jewel:

I must repeat a point I’ve made before about the partition of human knowledge, convictions, and beliefs. That partition is vital to discriminating among propositions, to assessing them for reliability, and to deciding which ones will command your allegiance.

  • Propositions that can be proved or disproved: Mathematics.
  • Propositions that can be disproved but not proved: Science.
  • Propositions that can neither be proved nor disproved: Faith.

I have another friend who – although I am not certain he would return the favor saying the same of me – over the process of several years simply “de-converted.”  His many reasons for doing so would take up many words, but to summarize – he rejects Fran’s third point for the false reasoning of applying Fran’s first point as if it belonged to the second point.  In effect, he treats science not as Fran properly stated it must be approached, but as one would properly consider mathematics, and in the process rejected his Faith.  He came under the influence of several learned men – one in particular – who revels in pretending to be one of those “detached critic(s)” in matters of the Faith.  My friend now does likewise, enthralled, and has embarked on a mission to disabuse we who hold to the One Holy, as being a superstitious, backward lot.  It is what it is.


Fran then moves on to  several concrete examples of how confusing the order  of the “big three” plays out, before he comes back to his primary point(s):

I could cite many articles of faith people have embraced for reasons that have nothing to do with the available evidence. I’ve written about many of them here. I doubt it’s necessary to enumerate the occasions. But I keep coming back to the willingness, shared by so many Americans, to believe something for which there’s no evidence, simply because they want to believe it…and perhaps because it makes them feel superior to someone else.”

I get a huge giggle out of persons who style themselves “rationalists” but attack me for my Christian faith and Catholic allegiance. Can they produce evidence that the Gospels are fictional – that the events in them did not take place? They cannot. All they can do is sneer at them as “implausible.” Neither can they point to any statement by the Redeemer to which they could take exception on moral or ethical grounds. But it’s plain that feeling superior to me and other Christian believers is an important element of their self-images, so I refrain from embarrassing them.

I’ve begun to wonder if the emotional demands of those who condemn without knowledge are of the same kind. I’ve also wondered, in the case of the imperiously judgmental Christians I’ve encountered, if they give any thought to Christ’s exhortation to forgiveness: “Forgive us our trespasses, as we forgive those who trespass against us.

Our Lenten preparations might be well augmented by making time to think about forgiveness: of those who have harmed us, certainly, but also of those we have judged, whether on the weight of evidence or out of personal pique. Christ Himself forgave His executioners as He suffered on the cross. Ought we not to allow the same to those we disapprove from a distance?

May God bless and keep you all.


There is nothing in his words with which I could disagree.  What he did skillfully in his words was to bring my favorite Lenten passage to the forefront.  Yet again, Micah 7:19:

“He will again have compassion upon us; he will tread our iniquities under foot; and thou wilt cast all their sins into the depths of the sea.”


Have we the capacity to go beyond what Francis says, and actually forgive in such a manner?

No, but for those in the Faith, they have begun the journey of spiritually welding themselves to the Christ, Who could and did forgive in just such a manner.  Welding is a tedious, hot, and potentially harmful task – one could be either burned, or blinded, or both!  It is no easy matter.  The spiritual weld needed by us all – to Christ and the Cross – will not be completed on this side of the river.  We will fail many times, be it in doubting the Christ, or failing to forgive the doubters, before each of us gives up the spirit.

I wrote about the grip sin has on us all in this world the other day.   The Season of Lent nonetheless calls us to the task of “welding” anyway.  The East calls it theosis, we in the West call it sanctification.  It is the ongoing effort at becoming holy as Christ is holy.  It is a call to love our neighbor – whoever that might be – as ourselves, because a mere glance at the Crucifix is ample reminder that in Him Who was crucified for all our sins, God tread all our sins under His feet, and cast them to the bottom of the sea, to be remembered no more.

An impossible task for us to perform?  Yes.  And yet, Christ tells us –

Go and do likewise.

A Joke

What follows, I posted at a site I frequent – Daily Pundit – in a kind of response to the travesty of Robert Mueller’s newest indictments.  That this has been a sham from the beginning should be seen and known by those intelligent enough to tie their own shoes, but in this day and age, who knows?


Here’s my take on matters . . . hey, it’s as good as anything else we’ve been told!

Mueller got a bad batch of Beef Stroganoff for dinner the other night, and got pissed at the Rooskies, even indicting Putin’s chef.  He is desperate – he ain’t got jack for all his “investigating.”  Manafort and Flynn – their lawyers will eat Mueller cases against the two for lunch.  He hasn’t laid a glove on Donald and never will.

Despite all the public ill-will against Russia (90% manufactured out of whole cloth), be sure that Don and Vlad have kept on good terms, albeit on back channels (Oooh – collusion!)  Whacko Kristol and the whole NRO/GOPe bunch were so butt-hurt to see the USSR disappear, and they and the Bushies have been trying ever since to resurrect the USSR.  They need a bad guy against whom to perpetuate their flipping perpetual wars.  Mueller’s just a corrupt gun hired by the highest bidder.

It is all cover and distraction.  Their day of reckoning is looming ever closer, but they are trying to however/somehow postpone it.  Donald just keeps letting out rope.  We are watching the last attempts to save Hildebeast and the entire Bammster administration.  Horowitz has no love lost for that bunch – none whatsoever.

Expect Mueller to next indict a few Yufukazani’s, Hill’s Macedonians, and exhume Reagan to answer questions about what really happened at Reykjavik.  The deep state/swamp is in a panic – when someone as completely inept as the bug-eyed Schifferbrains is running interference for them, you have to know things are a bit desperate.  I am convinced Bill Preistap has turned – he is in a position “to know” only exceeded by Horowitz.  There may well be others, and Donald has kept Sessions on a short leash and let matters play out.

I could be completely wrong, but I don’t think so.  I hold that we are watching The Art of the Deal being played out on the biggest stage ever, and the real estate involved is the entire swamp.  We are watching Sun Tzu’s  Art of War being played out in way and to a degree DC and the swamp critters could have never imagined nor can even begin to understand or contemplate.

The media is of about the same consequence to Trump as are skeeters to any of us watching 4th of July fireworks.  They really are nothing but commie dems with by lines.  The complete dorks in the GOPe imagine themselves the real masters over all things, but truth is, they are simply navel-gazing idiots.

Enjoy the show.  We do, indeed, live in interesting times.




What happened in South Florida was a tragedy – one we have learned in short order, that was eminently preventable, had the FBI been doing its actual job, and not allowing itself as an organization to be political pawns and essentially destroying its own reputation.

The emotions of the victims and victims’ families are genuine, and heart-rending.  But their grief has been assaulted and raped!  Our illustrious media has gone brain-dead berserk in its coverage, all the while the commie left has been raising funds and trying to score political points.  Their target has been isolated yet again and thrust to the forefront – the elimination of the Second Amendment, the goal of every ardent communist!

Ironically, and apparently beyond their rational abilities, it is precisely the 2nd Amendment that would have proven to be the prevention of, and solution to, the tragedy.  I quipped in a comment the other day:

“A head shot from an armed teacher would have resulted in one dead – the asshole that pulled the gun.  His murderous party would have been over before it began.”

BQ went hard at the subject today.  His first commenter explained why we see the irrational madness of the media and the politicos, and the various interest groups.  Facts can prove to be such irritating things, which is why most folks avoid them like the plague.  For those with “dogs in the hunt” so to speak – facts are all but verboten.  They do not serve their narrative.  Those who have been spoon-fed someone else’s logic and absorbed it as if their own, can only respond emotionally.  They lack the ability to think rationally.

And so, we merely await the next such occurrence of horror, with the sure and certain knowledge that again, no one will be prepared to stop it before it happens.


I would like to posit something that may seem cold.  It is not meant to be so – every time one of these fully preventable events unfold I, as a normal human being, have a very visceral reaction.  But such things must be put in perspective – something which is rarely ever done.

On average, based on CDC figures, 7196 Americans die every day.  From a truly human perspective, there are one million abortions in America each year.  The daily number of death jumps to an average of a hair under 10,000 every day.  Despite their list of causes of death, abortion is and will remain the first cause.  It is a truth that many times more than 17 Americans die every day.  By a humongous amount!

But there is larger point.


Death is all around us daily.  As a WCW, having been to more death-beds and funeral homes than most (especially in recent months!), I have seen and known death as up close and personal as one can see it short of my own dying.  And I will know that day as well.

I grieve for the families who lost loved ones, and for the loved ones gunned down.  No one expected anything like that heading out in their morning rounds.  But death is like that, and Jesus told us our days had been numbered by the Father long ago.  He just wasn’t forthcoming with any firm signs or dates or causes, because He had a far greater purpose.

And perspective.  I would never wish to be confronted with a choice between the miserable bastard of the satan – cancer, as was my brother Marty and SIL Elaine, or a bullet from a whacko.  Either would be painful, and deadly.  I would greatly prefer to die in my sleep.  But that is not my call.  But even dying in my sleep shows the grip sin has on us all in this world.

We live in a sinful world, corrupted by the evil one.  Evil does exist, but not merely in the demented minds and hearts of those like the young son who gunned down folk in Florida.  Sin has corrupted all of us.  St. Paul, himself immersed in both the dialectic and rhetorical, laid matters out succinctly – “As it is written, There is none righteous, no, not one.”  The whole 3rd chapter of Romans, where Paul riffs off especially the Psalms, is to show us the simple facts, we are sinners in need of a gracious God.  All of us!  And I know the mindless critic(s) who has never grasped the enormity of sin, nor that of the forgiveness Christ purchased, would jump all over me, asking “How could a loving God have permitted that horrific shooting?”  Idjit – you want the facts, and not rhetoric?

He didn’t permit it.  That notion is so silly and out-of-date as to be absurd.  You and I and every human being “permitted it.”  Get that?  It is what lies in us – the sinful corruption that is our inherent rebellion against God, and it really is most remarkable that when our rebellion against God backfires in our own faces, we still blame God, and not ourselves.  And in the anger born of our rebellion, it is hard to hear the response of God to your cry of anger.  Those first 20 verses of Romans 3 are very harsh, yet very much the truth.  The answer of God to such a horrific event remains the same, constant comfort, which either one will seek and own, or reject and become worse yet:

“But now the righteousness of God without the law is manifested, being witnessed by the law and the prophets; even the righteousness of God which is by faith of Jesus Christ unto all and upon all them that believe.”

Romans 3 puts all of this into – well . . . perspective.


I have witnessed horrific death in my lifetime – not in the form of the shooting, but in many ways, far more horrifically.  Because I myself am mortal, and because my profession allows my the insight of how death operates and how we are so often willing victims of the sin that leads to it, I have had to back off and gain a better perspective on it all.


The Holy Church’s present focus on Lent – a penitential season leading us to the bloody death of the Son of God on His miserable cross for YOU and for ME, and then blossoming into the blessed day of the Resurrection – ah, now that is an altogether different perspective.  It fits none of the narrative of the bloody, horrific mess this world truly is.  It instead, has redeemed it.

And that is the perspective of the Gospel of Christ.  Pax . . .

Clint Nailed It

“A man’s gotta know his limitations.”

When one is young, there seem to be no limitations.  Chase dreams.  Go for the gold ring.  Be all you can be.  We all know the lines.

But odd things happen along the way.  We age.  Unplanned events occur.  Finances fluctuate.  Loved ones pass.  Introspection cause us to back up and re-evaluate goals and dreams.

I knew by age 20, no matter how well I could play the game, becoming a major league ball-player was not within reach.  It was a full cut above my level of talent.  I didn’t quit playing, I could only play to my level.  So I did until I was 50 and had fun.

I turned to my other love – theology, and the Holy Ministry.  When one has a wife and two young sons, that is cause for pause.  But I plowed ahead, and succeeded.  Ten years, a BA and an MDiv, and a Weird Collar for life.  Many would revel in such achievements.  I did.  But I always had that one little hope – call it a dream – in the back of my head.  I wanted to become as I wished when I played baseball and could not – at the pinnacle of my profession – a ThD.  I would not trade that to have SML still with me, but now, as Christ and time does for us, being carried past those dark days of her passing, the old dream re-surfaced.

Except –  “A man’s gotta know his limitations.”   Sigh.

The confluence of age and fixed income become great determinants to one’s direction in life, even if filled with all manner of optimism.  Looking back, I have accomplished much for which I offer nary an apology.  But I just do not have the wherewithal to grasp that gold ring.

Disappointed?  Well, maybe a bit, but the one benefit of age is that one comes to know their limitations fully.  Could I yet learn Latin or a modern foreign language?  Yes, had I the bucks.  Could I then pursue a 2-3 year course of study resulting in the gold ring of a Doctorate of Theology?  I am able.

But then what?  Few my age are chosen for faculty appointments.  Few are called to a parish at my age, nor on the basis of degrees beyond the MDiv.  Were I independently wealthy, it would be different matter, but again, I bump into those “limitations.”  I am not independently wealthy.

I must play the hand I have been dealt – do what I can where I find myself.  There are those in my daily walk to whom I can be, as Luther said, “a little Christ.”  There is an opportunity on the horizon that is not beyond my age or means, as it were, but starting a new mission flock is in most ways, far more daunting than an STM or Doctorate.

It is completely dependent upon the Lord in His wisdom.  All I can do is give it the best shot I know to do.  I did it once.  I know the given tasks, although this time there are a few twists.  They are not outside my limitations, but the final decision is not mine.

It is a step of Faith, for which there are no specific road-maps save for the Scripture, and they simply say “Come, follow Me” and “Go forth.”

I shall endeavor to do so.