The latest fashion among child rearing experts is to bemoan the lack of free, unscheduled time among children and adolescents.  Time to daydream, create, come up with their own games, set their own rules, work out their own relational problems.  Yes, those things are important . . . but I was pondering the purpose of the break from school this summer and thinking perhaps we need to take a different lesson from history. Summer breaks were originally scheduled in the… Read more

Dogs, according to dog whisperer Cesar Milan, live fully in the present.  There is no past or future for them.  So, whatever happens happens right at that moment, without regard for future consequences, and, apparently, without learning much from the past. Now, I have two dogs–a yellow lab, Jake, and a golden retriever, Lacey.  They were rescue dogs, found running across a highway near Roanoke by a couple of friends of my husband’s.  These dog lovers picked them up, took… Read more

This came out from the Associated Press last week:  “A fiercely debated, nine-year investigation into Ireland’s Roman Catholic-run institutions says priests and nuns terrorized thousands of boys and girls in workhouse-style schools for decades – and government inspectors failed to stop the chronic beatings, rapes and humiliation.” I looked at parts of the 2,600 page report–mainly skimming the abstract and seeing how much detail went into the reports.  Although some students tried to bring to light was what happening during the worst… Read more

Our church is holding a yard sale at the end of May to raise a little extra money to finish out the furnishings of our new building.  As I’ve also got numerous house guests coming shortly and am motivated to clean before they come, I have grabbed the opportunity to sort out drawers, closets, cupboards and garage. A yard sale is a form of barter.  It’s out of the mainstream retail economy, and serves multiple purposes.  Those doing the selling… Read more

Last week in Boston, a trolley went ran a red light and hit another trolley. Forty nine people were injured. According to the report in the Boston Globe, the operator of the trolley that did not run the red light was text messaging at the time. He looked down at his phone to do so, and when he looked up and saw the other trolley in the intersection, he couldn’t hit the brakes in time. Now in response, all trolley… Read more

Fear has won.  We are shutting down.  All, just in case . . . just in case someone gets sick and dies, or, more likely, someone gets sick and sues the school district or the county or church or business or what ever organization was so irresponsible to actually hold an event where someone might, just might, pick up a virus and pass it on. Yes, the swine flu is contagious, as are all types of influenza and lots of… Read more

As a female pastor, I’m still an object of curiosity to Adriana and Rocio, both raised Roman Catholic and educated in RC schools in Colombia.  During lunch yesterday, we had some conversation about their spiritual lives and their willingness to abide by certain Roman Catholic doctrines, particularly the ban against any kinds of artificial birth control.  Essentially, they were told by the nuns who taught them to ignore that requirement, which they have both quite firmly done. We also talked… Read more

It was a typical early spring London afternoon, damp, occasional sprinkles, low overhanging clouds.  I’m here in London enjoying a couple of weeks playing “Granny” to three year old and 1 1/2 year old grandsons.  We had been joined for the day by their cousins, two girls, aged 8 and 5 and they had all played together quite well most of the day.  But now the littlest one was up from his nap, and a long, unplanned afternoon spread out… Read more

Late last week, my husband and I were hosting a birthday party for a business friend of his at a restaurant in East Dallas. The party was to begin at 6:30; we left Krum at 5:25, cutting it pretty close timewise. Of course, if I had been driving, we would have left earlier, but that is a story for another time! After a brief slowdown on I35 at the south end of Denton, we enjoyed smooth driving through Lewisville and… Read more

“If all the churches in your community disappeared, what difference would it make?” I read this question this week and felt it worth exploring. If all the churches disappeared, what difference would it make? Now, I don’t know the inner workings of all the churches here, just the one where I serve. But I will affirm this: the people of every church in our community work diligently to add value to us. I know that people are fed and clothed,… Read more

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