For All the Saints: The Martyrs of Samosata

Posted by Webster I used to think that before my lifetime people lived in B/W, not color. That’s because in my childhood, all TV was in B/W. When a gangland boss was gunned down in the rerun of an RKO picture from the 1930s, the blood he bled was black. I would have thought the same for the Martyrs of Samosata, whom we remember today.Abibus, Hipparchus, James, Lollian, Paragrus, Philotheus, Romanus: odd names living in a long-lost time in a… Read more

For My Buddies at Adoration

Posted by Webster I have a confession to make: I attend Eucharistic Adoration one hour per day, on average. But that’s not my confession. Here it is: I am not always silent at Adoration. I don’t tumble for Our Lady like Barnaby in Auden’s “Ballad.” But I do talk with several of my “Adoration buddies,” some of them every week.In July 2008 Father Barnes established Adoration in the lower church, basement level. In the days when four or five priests lived… Read more

Because “The Test of All Happiness is Gratitude”

Posted by Webster G. K. Chesterton can be a chore, the way he piles one analogy, one alliterative turn of phrase on another. But there are golden needles in his haystack. Today, I was plowing through Orthodoxy, chapter 4, “The Ethics of Elfland,” when I came upon a statement that stopped me cold: “The test of all happiness is gratitude.” It felt as though I was being handed a golden key, one that can help me make sense of my experience.Think… Read more

To Be Frank, Part 3, “What the Blazes, Blaise?!”

I’m a baseball fan. I love the game! I never really played it that well as a kid, but my oldest son is pretty good. He didn’t play ball on an official team until he was seven years old, but I started pitching Wiffle Balls to him when he was three or four. (more…) Read more

Because the Real Santa Story is Amazing Enough

I’ve told my children that there is no Santa Claus. I make no apologies about that either. My reason? It takes away from the story of the actual miracle man who is Saint Nicholas the Wonderworker. As I’ve stated before, I’m a newcomer to Catholicism. However, I was baptized when I was ten years old and have been a Christian for (do the math) thirty-six years. So I’m not exactly a newcomer to Christianity. And I truly believe in the… Read more

Thoughts on the LOTH for Today

Posted by Webster There’s joyful anticipation in Advent, but there’s also a powerful sense of urgency. Forget the stress of shopping or completing your Christmas card list, the pressure of putting up more lights this year than last or more lights than your neighbor.This is what I call urgency: The Lord is coming, and soon. And we are called, urged, commanded to prepare. The short reading for Morning Prayer today (Romans 13:11-12) reminds us: It is now the hour for… Read more

Because of “Godspell”

Posted by WebsterThrowing down the gauntlet to my Catholic brother and fellow YIMC blogger, Frank Weathers— The year was 1970, when you were—what—six years old?! That’s when “Godspell” opened off Broadway, five years after Vatican II, one year after Woodstock. It totally rocked my world. And you were in what, kindergarten? How could you understand, Frank? I was one year into an alternative spiritual trip that left the Episcopal Church in the rear-view mirror. Just then, this hippie-dippie musical inspired… Read more

For Larry, Who Served at Funerals All These Years

Posted by WebsterI had a singular honor Friday morning. I served at the altar for a funeral for the first time. And not just any funeral. Larry, the deceased, had served at funerals for years. I am now “in the rotation,” effectively taking Larry’s place. Someday, another man will serve at my funeral. As long as Father Barnes is celebrating, no problem.Ferde, a regular altar server for funerals, has the same requirement, by the way—that Father Barnes celebrate his funeral… Read more

Because the Holy Spirit is On the Line

Posted by Webster I have a theory that can be stated simply: The Holy Spirit is on FaceBook. I don’t mean to promote a single form of the new electronic media by proposing this. I could as easily prove that the Holy Spirit uses Twitter. I mean, think about it. What sound does a dove make? Tweet, tweet. I offer this for weekend discussion and propose one test case for consideration. Exhibit A: Frank Weathers. Several weeks ago, as dedicated… Read more

Thoughts on the LOTH for Today

Replace the phrase descendants of Israel in Isaiah 45 with the sheep of my flock from Psalm 99 in today’s morning prayer and ponder these words anew. Isaiah 45: Turn to me and you will be saved, all you ends of the earth; for I am God, there is no other. I have sworn by my own being, I have decreed a judgment that will not be revoked; for every knee will bend to me, every tongue swear by my… Read more


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