Duke Ellington Understood Incarnation, Lived Christmas

Duke Ellington

There is a collection of Christmas-Themed articles over at National Review, and among them you'll find my piece which started out as a rant against cruise-pictures-as-Christmas-cards and ended up being about Duke Ellington and the Great Christmas Secret:“Duke Ellington and I exchanged Christmas greetings each year,” wrote Joe Delaney of the Las Vegas Sun., “Mine were sent in mid-December. Duke sent his when the spirit moved him.”A reformed Ebenezer Scrooge may have pledged to “honor Chri … [Read more...]

You Balance Out the Keening Pain of Newtown – UPDATED

light in darkness

“In normal life we hardly realize how much more we receive than we give, and life cannot be rich without such gratitude. It is so easy to overestimate the importance of our own achievements compared with what we owe to the help of others.” ― Dietrich Bonhoeffer, Letters and Papers from PrisonMy goodness, you guys, I'm not easily moved to tears but the response to this request for toy donations on behalf of an outreach that had none to give -- and the kindness and generosity that i … [Read more...]

Let’s Go Shopping! Christmas Gift Ideas!

pretty knife

A lot of you have been asking for this annual post, and it feels like I am much later with it than usual, but in looking at my archives it seems that with one glaring exception, I'm pretty much on schedule, so let's get to it.To start with, be aware that it's getting towards the deadline to order gifts made by monastic houses. It's already too late to order the wreaths, but I think you can still squeeze in candy, coffee and soap/creme orders. I just ordered these St. Nicholas Shea Butter … [Read more...]


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