The Fine Art of Jewelry Repair

I was thinking about some advice I got recently from a dear friend to shorten blog posts.  I have gotten this advice occasionally from people.  It comes mostly from people who do not wish to hear what I have to say. ( I pause here to smile.)  But such advice also comes from persons who simply do not have the time to sift through admittedly meandering prose. 

I understand and foresaw this, this criticism, and that’s why my blog is called “Unraveled” with the byline “Tip: Pearls are Often Hidden in the Deep.”  This is my warning to the time limited reader that my blog –  for them – might be a waste of their time.

My blog is not intended for skimming.  Personal blogs are not text messages or a daily motivational quote, waiting conveniently for you on your iPhone.

And skimming…  imagine that concept for a moment, if you will.

As a chef, I say one can never learn, understand or truly appreciate complex recipes by skimming or reading only bullet points, by nature of the pastry dough and the Kirsch and the emulsion process.  Likewise, not all verbal arguments or causes are easy to simplify, expedite or bullet point, but that doesn’t make them less valuable.  On the contrary.

Life reminds of being ten years old in the shoe store, wondering why all the pretty small children’s shoes don’t fit my unusually big feet. I had outgrown the shoes, before growing into my own feet, but it was not my feet that were in error.  I could not stuff my feet into shoes disproportionately too small. Come back (dear friend) to my blog later (only if you want ) with a glass of wine in hand and an easy chair.

I have found the process of unraveling one’s life and the deeper mysteries in it (like those regarding the church) to find truth, is much like trying to untangle a fine necklace found in many knots in one’s underwear drawer.  It cannot be done hastily, or with generic eyesight, if that makes any sense to the unfamiliar.

pearl-rosary

Nor can anyone rebuild a fine necklace with cheap material or present it back to anyone as a present in abbreviated or cheapened format.  Pearl necklaces are much too precious for that. Rushing has gotten me nowhere in life.  One disdains the slow molasses-like drip of life until one realizes that only in the very rich molasses of life, lies the needed nutrients.

But be aware before blogging that many will not understand, recognize or appreciate truth’s value, or even its nature, no matter how you frame it, and will prefer the Lumistix children’s necklaces that can be purchased at Party Supply.  They glow in the dark.

I think Walmart also sells them and Walmart has Bonus Buys.  (Use the express lane. I’m not keeping anyone away. It’s cool how they’re so bendy.)

Seriously.  I have nothing against the silly and the trivial.

But I’m not in the Lumistix business.

I’m also not in the deep-fried-macaroni-and-cheese-coated chicken- wings-on-a-stick-business, which was actually recommended to me as an alternative at the very height of my European pastry shop’s success.

Finally, I did not eliminate the butter and flour from pastries, that which lent taste, quality, value, substance and even science to laborious, revered, time-honored culinary processes,  simply upon demand by American clients who had already made themselves unknowingly fat and gluten intolerant.

Am I having a flash back?

Do I resent or feel angry at persons for actually preferring what I consider of lesser quality?  No, I do not.  So please don’t imagine “tone” here.

It simply hurts when people ignorantly complain that what I produce with great effort (that they did not) is not what they would have produced, with less.  I wonder if they imagine it was meant to be the opposite of that which I intended.

Thus the anticipated rejection applies to my writing, and I believe everyone who has successfully come to terms with their own life understands it.  “Rejection” that is, and how embracing rejection – shouldn’t be rejected.  It is usually the unaware that prefer the easily understood, obtained or faddish over things of deeper value.

Man rejects the deeper values, because as humans, we reject the painful and slow paced.  We subsequently reject self-realization, preferring the comic book version of life. I am not leaving myself out of this self-accusation.

We think “Oh Truth, that can’t be found there, in the painful and slow”  but that’s precisely where Truth is found.  The unraveling process is by nature out of our comfort zone.  Our instinct is to simply yank at our own delicate pearl necklaces with a bible quote or modern axiom, in hopes to fix it, when we find it entangled. We think it is these things that can help us and help others as well, like something we can drop off at our neighbor’s doorstep at our own convenience.

While on our way, of course, to things of much greater urgency.

C. S. Lewis wrote a lot about this in The Great Divorce.  Quick fixes are not really charity.  What good is it to drop off, for example, a piece of needed medical equipment for an elderly neighbor, if one is not willing to also unpack and assemble it for her?

No, true charity and subsequent insight, is strangely related – to time.

Imagine that.

God rarely sends us on cold drop offs or pick ups, daily bullet points in hand, like letter of His law. God wants us to sit in charity and hear the prolific woes of such elderly neighbors, even when we have our own prolific woes, drink one’s coffee with the low fat milk or powdered sugar substitute we cannot tolerate but they offer – so as not to insult. In other words, be with them.

In paradox (which is always the language of truth) it might be that specific neighbor God is using to do you a service, give you a gift –  an insight you can learn from –  even the final key you need to solve something in your own life, to which your ego, assumptions or impatience towards them might have rendered you blind.

When I realized how I had to slow down and only then find Truth, that is when I started finding out what was missing in my life.  I found missing puzzle pieces to my life in silence, as if they were waiting for me all along in the dark. I found them in the most unexpected places, often the mundane and including the tiring.  Through reflection, sometimes gut wrenching angst, in the darkest nights of my soul, but sometimes in the very joy of LIVING (with the help of Mary the Mother of God who now eternally and endlessly brings us the Fullness of Truth)  I started putting those missing puzzle pieces back together – like pearls on a string.

Pearls that I might have otherwise overlooked.

My blog is that careful realignment of my own necklace, just in case God has strung hidden pearls upon it with which others can also complete their own. I do not want to leave any pearls out, because who am I to determine their potential value to others?

So please, do not rush me.

It’s not the fast food, Facebook or addition of cute kitten pictures mentality that has anything to do with the preservation, revealing or sharing of truth.

Some truths, by nature, are so complex this side of life (like those involving the church) they are very much like multi-dependent pearls on a chain. If you leave one out, loose, or replace with artificial gemstones the whole necklace breaks apart, as soon as you put it back on.  You then cannot communicate anything at all. Your argument is flawed.  Works of art are detected fraudulent or rendered defective by the tiniest telltale assumption or missing element. If we rush the process of learning deep truths we will misunderstand them, and worse, mislead others in our very ignorance.

I realize my writing style and subject is not for everyone, but that’s okay. I do not market to attract the majority of readers.

My blog is also in no way a plea to hear me because I’m suffering, for if I’m suffering, most of the time I do not feel it.  My suffering is limited to the aches and pains every child of God possessing a human body must endure.  I write out of passionate joy and love for truth. It’s as simple as that. I blog because I Am, and to Give Voice.

So, if my story falls in a darkened forest (which it inevitably will) it will still make a sound.

It will make a sound because God is with me. I have found Him because I have waded through my own deep, and His love (like some accuse my words of being ) is endless, in nature.  Who would want to limit praise, read or unread, of Him Whom is Infinite? He is like and makes our lives like a beautiful, round circular necklace of pearls, a never ending, fascinating story or everlasting wreath.  One who truly finds joy, only wishes to express and share it, without expecting anything in return.

Treasure hunt, anyone?

Unwinding Keys

This is a philosophical poem I wrote about the terrorist attacks in Paris.  I think David Byrne’s music is a fitting orchestral accompaniment.

A headline in the news
They broke her eldest daughter
And victims were confused
With victims of the slaughter

paris-image-for-blog-candles

They spoke in ancient ways
With candles and with flowers
But refuge is not found
In stadiums or towers

paris-image-for-blog-gold-bassinet

Mad world you are so cruel
She wants nothing of you
Mad world you are a fog
Very few can see through

(c) Frances Maynard; Supplied by The Public Catalogue Foundation

Mad world you grow so dark
Darker every minute
Surrounding her with words
With which they hope to spin it

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She gathers up her young
And runs with haste to refuge
See chicks escape the rain
While great beasts drown in deluge

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Can you hear her now?

She speaks in music’s silence
And paints a bright new world
An end to all the violence

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Mad world you are so cruel
She’s in her bridal chambers
Singing of His love
And children safe from dangers

paris-image-for-blog-truth


Children take these keys

It’s in the breach, remind them
Unravel to your birth
And in the light you’ll find Him

                                         paris-image-for-blog-lourdes

Epiphany

In self-defense and in defense of the innocent, cowardice is the only sin.

–  Dean Koontz

baby-rockabye

When I realized that it is God Who sometimes allows our cradles to come crashing down, into the void or whatever feels to us like a dark, bottomless abyss (as we fumble around in the dark trying to catch our breath, disoriented and spinning, feeling like our whole life has been ripped out from underneath us) I also had to realize something else.

I had to realize that the only reason a good God would permit such a thing –  that is –  permit the cradles we were born into to fail,  is for the innocent to realize a greater good.  Or else, I had to cease believing that God is good, just, or fair – at all.

Persons abused in early childhood (sometimes by their own parents) must be held safe in Someone Else’s hands all along, for the universe to balance out “right”.  They must be held safe (though I feel safe now) for me to maintain my Catholic faith, or for me to continue sleeping peacefully at night.

When I asked God one night why, why I felt so intensely about “these children” and the adults they become, He spoke something to me deeper than my conscious state can remember.

But I caught the tail end of truth as I awoke the next morning, through that Silent Voice, that Gentle Voice of Revelation that has become as intimate as my own thoughts.  It said,  “It was thrown at you so hard it broke inside your heart.”

I had to think about that for a moment – what was thrown at me – what caused my own cradle to fall, and what caused something inside my heart to break.  Hadn’t the plunging cradle drop happened several times already, inside my own heart, so unexpectedly each time I thought I would die upon impact?

I cannot interpret dreams and interior messages infallibly, but I can recognize the truth of their many analogies in retrospect. Some were actual predictions of real life experiences.  My heart has indeed been broken, for myself, and for others.  I know this to be true.

And although I have experienced sorrow,  I have also found joy.

I can’t help wondering, if truth is the opposite of evil,  if abused children are really the chosen ones, special souls belonging in a special way to God (God being a God of infinite justice, proportion and balance) are these souls then are invited into a deeper degree of intimacy with Him than experienced by most?

I am thinking of the proliferation of bloggers on the Internet with childhood stories to tell more harrowing and horrific than my own, who have carried the weight of the ugliest abuse on their backs like the most gentle beasts of burden.  They are trauma survivors who yet never became bitter, but on the contrary, hear God’s voice in the whisper of the wind, music, art, or paths meandering through forest and solitude.

Some find profound theology without any formal education at all.

It is as if truth plants itself sturdy and upright, like trees growing right in the middle of everyone’s life journey. We can never avoid them, even if we try to bypass or plant around them for years, covering up for others simply because it has become force of habit.  When we see truth we see it plainly, or not at all.

You were born innocent.

You were never deserving of your parents’ guilt.

Your mother might have never loved you (yes that is true) but I have loved you always.

I Am He Who Is always there.

I love you because through suffering you most resemble My heart, which was also broken by mankind, and I made you therefore –  especially Mine.

Whether God speaks to us in such manners diverse during childhood,  or when we fall from our cradles as adults, smacking ourselves wide awake on blunt and painful crosses, those with need and desire will awake, listen –  and hear.

Knowing God’s penchant for paradox, I believe cradle dropping is actually how hope is reborn, our personal Book of Revelation unpacked.

Can it be for some of the most severely abused that they were already baptized in the waters of their own mother’s womb, as if to pre-cushion the blow? Can it be these were assured of God’s grace and Continual Presence, before they even took their first breath in this dangerous and sometimes heart breaking, yet strangely beautiful world?

Can that be possible?

For many scapegoats and victims of childhood trauma (once they learn to reject the accusatory and blaming voice of the inner critic) the acceptance of deep and difficult truths not only seems to free them.  It seems to perfect from within,  a disproportionate spiritual insight, empathy and above average emotional intelligence.  These survivors are typically driven and spiritually passionate.  It is like it is they, not their disordered parents or even those who come from “perfect” Christian families, have a real Mission From God.

Tell them I Am always here, and tell them I Am always good.

Tell them I Am a just God, not the accuser, the liar, or one who would cover up crimes against little children.

Innocent children, and children at heart, know these things. God reaches out to them or sends them His own mother.  I think of the Marian apparitions at La Salette.

Abused children have become the recipients of such messages divine, and are like brave soldiers that I believe should be recognized for heroic virtue, not ignored, or repeatedly have their “integrity” questioned.  Abuse survivors are now leaders ahead of and immune to pack mentality, and seem to rapidly fathom and instantly calculate the inevitable toll of societal indifference whereas others of “correct” and “properly catechized” familial influence often cannot.

Those who have experienced severe suffering act because they know to not act is to fear, and to fail in loving a God Whom they paradoxically see has been so generous to them, where the world has not. They measure and are acutely aware of the Urgency of Things, and are determined to leave no one behind, or ignorant of God’s love.

I remember reading a book on maternal narcissism which said daughters are more often scapegoated by narcissistic mothers than sons.  The victims paradoxically have greater degrees of mental health later in life, as compared to the narcissist’s “golden” (praised and spoiled) children.

The researchers who wrote this book determined that this was because the more extreme the false accusations against victims, the more likely scapegoats were able to detect that blame lied in the accuser’s pathology, and not in themselves.  These victims therefore were least likely to emulate or perpetuate narcissistic behaviors.

Victims who accepted they could never win their parent’s love, and embraced this grief, not only moved on but often thrived, while maintaining higher degrees of emotional empathy for themselves and others.  Those who allowed little or no contact with familial abusers fared the best, but ironically were often the only mentally healthy family members left able to care for aging loved ones.

And why do these complex, follow-up studies make me think of the Catholic Church, the still largely unacknowledged pederasty epidemic, the abused devout, the countless victims, mostly children and many grown survivors, some already writing their own trauma and recovery memoirs?

Well, as I once heard someone (other than my Lord) say:   it’s a metaphor, you potato with eyes.

Those abused by a prelate see the obvious first, like the scapegoated daughter of mother church, and see the duty to warn others, perhaps more naive siblings, or the golden children –  the “potatoes with eyes”, no matter what the personal cost.

Yes, the situation is really that bad.

For devout Catholics, this truth may hurt at first (indeed it will be scourging) but it will always set one free.

For that is Truth’s nature.

Truth cannot do otherwise.

Someone recently told me the solution to the church’s ills could be solved with one good man, as if that One Good Man had not already been crucified for having had the solution in the first place. My friend (a mere man) did not realize that man simply did not like the solution that Jesus Christ demanded, because man does not come off as the hero.

No, the solution cannot be man, when man himself is the problem, the corruption of the expression of truth, the visible hierarchy and the very mystery of iniquity.

I think it’s funny that when the anti-Christ comes he won’t be a child, or even a woman, and that he will be, well – a man.  I think it’s funny because traditionalist reactionaries were acting as if the anti-Christ would suddenly turn out to be Hillary Clinton, and they could just “vote her out”.

So let’s have another conclave.

Let’s elect yet another man and just vote evil out of the church.

No, the solution lies not in yet another sociopathic brute male or holy Saint Gregory the Great, but in the Voice of Truth, and in the Revealing, the Revelation of that Truth. The visible hierarchy of Mother Church has already abused the devout and the trusting, both on the “left” and on the “right”.

Truth is not a reaction,  but a Reality.

Think of  Bishop Timlin, the FSSP’s Saint Gregory’s Academy at Elmhurst, Pennsylvania, or West Virginia’s own Bishop Michael Bransfield, and the innocents whose lives were ruined or are being ruined by these entities.  How many children do we have to sacrifice to the monster before we have our own epiphany?

The mass is in tatters.

Its remnants remain, like shattered victims, on the floor.

Open the door and let them out of My house where (and when) they are being imprisoned.

I will see and feed them.

We should be particularly humble and quiet so that we should not miss hearing This Voice, This Voice of God and Voice of Direction out of the mouths of babes, those children crying in the wilderness.  Because I’m afraid, if you’ll pardon the expression, the emperor’s not wearing any clothes.

All of us would do well to take notice of this, regardless of how hideously ugly man can be.

Many bishops in particular are not wearing clothes, literally, as well as figuratively. They are not really wearing the rank they just “appear” to possess, because of their own actions.

I’m referring to the abomination of pederasty and it’s cover up, not loosely stated (yawn) informal heresy or some minor liturgical (yawn) infraction, or even “allowing” people prelates assume not to be in the state of grace, to receive Holy Communion.  I believe these lesser issues circulate like bait and switch among those who deem themselves elect, to deceive and keep them mentally preoccupied. 

And no, it is not a bishop’s personal guilt but his ACT of child abuse, his ACT of covering up child abuse and perpetuation of child abuse that automatically excommunicates him, whether or not this reality is acknowledged by church officials.  Calculate Catholics, for a moment in your mind, what this truth entails.

Invalid bishops cannot ordain valid priests, and non-valid priests cannot transubstantiate the Sacred Species.

A fraudulent church can only produce their own foul smelling abomination of desolation, that it still demands we worship and adore, as if hoping we will do these things out of force of blind habit or misunderstanding of required obedience.  Remember the stigmatist, Catherine Emmerich’s warning, so many centuries ago?

“There was no office on in (the strange new) Church. But the sanctuary lamps were lit…In the cave below (the sacristy) some people kneaded bread, but nothing came of it; it would not rise”

The teaching that those connected with incest or crimes against children are automatically excommunicated and therefore lose their powers of office is as old as the Didache.  Perhaps this is because the early Christians were all too familiar with the connection between pederasty and the occult, as the pagan religions prevalent in those times manifested.

No such loss of office was ever incurred automatically through “lesser” priestly crimes, even those involving actual fornication and murder. The canon declaring pederasty or its promotion ipso facto excommunicates is still in effect, and was re-issued many times, including one hundred years ago, in 1917.

It is as if, in the same year when Mary appeared to more innocent little children at Fatima, and spoke to them of terrible secrets, the canon was re-clarified to prevent the obscuration of it’s simple and most obvious interpretation and tenants.

Can it be just a coincidence that there were stars falling from the sky in the Book of Revelation around this Apocalyptic lady,  Mary, the same version of Mary that seemed to appear in the sky at Fatima? Can it be just a coincidence that the “stars” in this passage, from ancient times, were thought to symbolize (in spiritual language) the bishops prophesied to “fall” from their position, and “fall” from their own power?

3And there was seen another sign in heaven: and behold a great red dragon, having seven heads, and ten horns: and on his head seven diadems: 4And his tail drew the third part of the stars of heaven, and cast them to the earth:

Canon commentators bemoan the fact today that the ancient historically revered canon, canon 2359, is suddenly not “respected or enforced” anymore,  but I have never heard a canon lawyer argue that the penalty of loss of office (and loss of powers intrinsic to that office) is not incurred by way of crime itself.  No canon lawyer can argue it is by way of – and dependent upon –  formal decree.

As well, although personal sanctity or lack thereof does not directly effect office, it does not mean personal sanctity is not relevant to validity of office.

Formal acts that go egregiously against the mission of the church and church teaching indicate that the prelate has no intention to generally “do as the church does”  in the first place.  Do men who seek to indulge and cover up their pathological urges against children really intend to do the mission of the church?

This is even more clear with canon 2359 than in the annulment “process”, because acts of adultery do not automatically invalidate a marriage, whereas pederasty does invalidate a bishopric, or any church office.  And “mere” acts of adultery and other sins are considered during a marriage tribunal because even these may indicate an invalidating intent or disposition on the part of the person – when entering into the sacrament of marriage.  However, if one possessed the pathology or will to molest one’s own children, they certainly couldn’t validly contract,  or ever fulfill “the mission” of marriage.

As well, a marriage does not “become void” BY the declaration of nullity.  It is determined never to have existed in the first place.

No one reasonably aware they are living in an invalid and abusive marriage should hesitate to leave it, simply because church bureaucrats have not yet declared it.  Likewise, no person aware that his or her bishop is not a real bishop (by this canon) should ever respect his false authority.

Notice the present tense used in the language of the canon (below).  The bishop’s ARE deprived of any office, and any act that allows a child to be abused in any way qualifies.  Do we really think God would not have been on the side of the children all along?

By the simplicity principle called Occam’s Razor,  it’s the bishops who are out –  not the children.

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I believe the current situation of denial of this reality is far worse, mortally worse, than when the SSPX rejoiced when LeFebvre’s personal excommunication was lifted, but failed to acknowledge that the automatic effects of his schismatic actions remained in effect.

For God’s sake, can’t most Catholics read?  Can’t most Catholics see?

Are we all just a bunch of potatoes with eyes?

Blessed is he, that readeth and heareth the words of this prophecy; and keepeth those things which are written in it; for the time is at hand.

The trees in the forest and their fruits remain evident and very clear, like the backs of our hands, yet prelates don’t even have to plant around them because reality itself is simply being ignored by those who pretend to be in charge.

Reality is also being ignored by laypersons comfortable and indifferent,  who don’t want to take off their rose colored glasses to acknowledge the suffering of innocents.  Maybe the children will just go away.  These children flee the visible church anyway.  Maybe this means the children were bad, or just lying.

But psychiatrists will confirm the children were not, and are not,  lying.

No man gets up on a stand in a court of law and acknowledges to the whole world that Father So and So did this or that to his genitals when he was only ten, unless his whole life has already been destroyed anyway, and he has nothing left of this world to lose.

Could it be that prelates still wish to enslave and ensnare the devout by way of tiny, vine-like tangled rubric, so they can continue to abuse little children,  while ignoring the forest of law that sets God’s children, their very victims, free?

For if Christ’s Real Presence is no longer certain to be in a Catholic church or upon a Catholic altar, the time is now to flee to the “mountains” to protect our children and families, where God will certainly feed His flock directly in spiritual communion, by means of prayer life, desire and inner intent, as promised by countless prophesies.

If not now, when, I ask parents of good will?

What are we waiting for?

Pope Benedict, the pope who two weeks after his election declared the Vatican infiltrated by predatory homosexuals, already “fled”.

Could Benedict be the real pope recognized by the saintly Emmerich? Perhaps Benedict, upon assuming office read the Fatima secret, and had the courage (unlike his predecessors) to say yes, it’s happening in my pontificate.  He did not want to officially head the false church.

I am not the one to officially declare this so, but I know I would never trust my son or daughter to a church whose catechists are pre trained not to question or suspect a priest, but turn suspicion back on you or other catechists, for sexually molesting our own children.  I have taken the mandatory church approved “child abuse prevention” catechist course, and was chastised for questioning it.

Why are we to suspect one another, the parents, or a neighbor, rather than the priest the child accuses of abuse?

Why was there no mention made of cell phones, gifts, private visits and modern means by which abusers secretly communicate and entice child victims?

Indoctrination programs that one cannot question do not emanate from a church.  Readers and thinkers and those with a heart, please hear this. They emanate from organized child abuse cults. What can be worse than fraudulent impostors and questionably ordained priests who sacrifice little children, our children, and then point fingers at us while covering up for the guilty?

For God’s sake and for the children’s sake, cradle Catholics, please wake up.

Your cradle has crashed and you are dangerously sleep walking.  Be brave and do not sleep through the three days of darkness. Your life and the life of your soul may depend upon whether or not you awake. 

Is it up to abused, threatened and traumatized children to determine which lines of the priesthood have not become compromised, which bishop’s hands have not lost the power to ordain, and which priests are real priests and therefore confect the Eucharist?

As for God, since He never abandons those children of good will who feel they must break with abusive parentage for the sake of survival, He will never leave those who obey His admonition to flee.  God doesn’t expect His children all to be canon lawyers, but He does expect us to hear His Voice, which is also understood as the Voice of Common Sense, or the Sense of the Faithful.

I used to think it was so sad that persons molested by priests as children ended up “leaving the church”.  What I realize today is that these grown children didn’t leave the church at all, because they ARE the church.  I grieve over my former ignorance and the fact that I too, once had many blind eyes.

The Church includes the boys the current “bishop” of my state, West Virginia, carted by the truckload to Gana Farms thirty years ago. Those who survived, survived because they figuratively “left the farm” and figuratively “ran for the hills”.  Let not the comfortable, the golden children, the potatoes with eyes, add insult to injury. Let not the victims be chastized for speaking out, for having the correct intellectual response or sense of the faithful type spiritual epiphany.

15When therefore you shall see the abomination of desolation, which was spoken of by Daniel the prophet, standing in the holy place: he that readeth let him understand. 16Then they that are in Judea, let them flee to the mountains: 19And woe to them that are with child, and that give suck in those days.

Yes, I too, am of those who found my Father and her His Voice walking in the woods when I was just a sad and frightened little child.

And although my abuse at home, and by a priest as an adult, was not of a sexual nature,  I do not know where the bad men have taken my Lord, and that is what is most important to me.

I, like the other misfits and forgotten children, have had my blinders ripped off  and now see the monsters, those Beasts of Desolation spoken of in Revelation, upon the altars of the churches in my diocese and all over the world.

I have seen the monsters curled up in death grip like giant reptiles and serpents over and around furniture of countless altars, and through the eyes of too many fraudulent and demonic priests, to ignore reality any longer.

And although I do not know where they have taken my Christ,  and I cannot even be certain of my instincts upon which altars He remains, and am stumbling still trying to catch my balance, I do know where my Lord can be found.

He can be found wherever those innocent children who fled the visible church, and are fleeing the visible church today, possess Him.

For did not Jesus say suffer the little children, and forbid them not to come to me: for the kingdom of heaven is for such?  Has Christ not promised to remain with His children always? 

Trusting little children do not need man to provide God to them.

I, like all abused innocents, believe and understand the old adage that God can be found anywhere, and even in nature itself.  So for me, that is where you can always find me as well.

I’ll be with the children, wherever God’s children are, for there is God Himself. 

Going into the woods is going home –  John Muir

Eating Oatmeal

“I wish I had never been born,” she said. “What are we born for?” “For infinite happiness,” said the Spirit. “You can step out into it at any moment…”  C S Lewis, The Great Divorce

oatmeal

My Aunt Tonia once said she was not like those fancy people who had fancy houses, who stacked winter blankets and throws up upon ottomans and bookcases, and made them look like artistic arrangements.  She said she was just a plain person, sitting in her kitchen, eating oatmeal out of the pot with a spoon.

I found her confession entirely charming of course, and ever since then I have a new found appreciation for the simplicity of oatmeal, a warm kitchen in winter time, and the wooden spoons with which we sometimes nourish ourselves.

My aunt’s personality did to the art of engaging in oatmeal during the cold season, what the winter plaids and woolen knits of various hue did to make her neighbor’s house look like a spread in Better Homes and Gardens.

It was the simple beauty and goodness of my aunt that added flavor and interest to oatmeal, and one could imagine this heroine, with her intense motherly love, foregoing the more mundane disciplines. This, paradoxically, made her house into something at which even the neighbors would prefer to sit and chat, despite the occasional presence of my aunt’s very unartistic and messy piled up dishes, regardless of whether she realized it or not.

For my aunt had many battles to fight in her life, for herself and for her children, even after her children were grown, and no longer lived at home.  She was a brave and joyous soldier woman to the end. Even when the cancer ultimately took her from us, everyone said the sheer intensity of her love for her family had extended her life by many years.  Aunt Tonia lived her life with such a grace and a fullness of humanity, that she did not even stop to recognize how beautiful her heart and home had become to others, who watched her world from their own sanitized, less interesting, more anesthetized versions.

I remember as a child reading CS Lewis and being fascinated at the description of the more motherly talking animal characters packing flasks of wine, rough, crusty chunks of bread and bundles of cheese wrapped in twine, for young warriors to take with them on journey.  These delicacies were inevitably sipped or eaten under shelter during storm, or savored with others along the way (with the grandeur and grace worthy of the finest cuisine) and as if so treasured, and so presented, those dining suddenly became nobility.

As an adult I’ve admired the way authors of novels describe the food preparation and dining in certain stories, and how it adds so much reality and atmosphere to the plot. We should all drink wine from our grandmother’s vintage crystal, with bold disregard for the dust, take time to savor hot tea before a roaring fireplace, volunteer in a soup kitchen, or get sand in our hair and wet with sea spray, pulling lobster or crab in from the ocean.

This is really living, appreciating the gifts that God has given us, and the groundedness of those gifts, those gifts that not only nourish us, but make us feel fully alive, and fully human.  The greatest gift God gave us is this very humanity. We therefore should relish in it.

Our humanity is the very nature and reality God came to share with us, and through which to give us hope on Christmas, during our very winter season, to make our happiness, lives and love for one another eternal.

For God is groundedness itself, Himself, the very Bread of everlasting life.

When I Need You

dad-at-picnic-table


I fell asleep again last night, unfortunately, in a chair.

I love to watch Hallmark Christmas specials on TV this time of year, because they are about love, family and relationships.  These things are all we will have in the end anyway, when this earth passes away from our eyes, and we enter into a more authentic reality.

But chairs are uncomfortable, and I love my real family, alive in Heaven and on earth, more than some virtual reality on TV.  So, painfully,  (I keep aging, imagine that) I got up from my chair to spend a little time focusing on them, in prayer, before drifting off to sleep once again, this time in my bed.

I must admit I don’t like background noise, because when I close my eyes in that semi-slumbering state, I often find myself drifting into conversation with my father, and he, inevitably, answering my questions.

I still need his fatherly advice.

His words then come silently.

They come in actual fragments of sentences that ring true, though correct interpretation and understanding often remains mysterious, until things happen in my life later, that renders their real meaning and authenticity, startling and obvious.

I cannot vouch however, for my own subconscious, or tricks it may play on me in the night,  but it does not feel like these words are interiorly produced.

Not at all.

Or I’d never have the audacity and confidence to publicize them, and give my father back his voice, which he lost through aphasia.

Last night I asked my father if he saved during his life, or wrote down, all that my mother had done to me, her abortion and my live birth.   When I was a teenager, he had tried to tell me how much I was her victim, and just how serious was her mental illness,  but I didn’t believe him.

I didn’t want to believe him.

Below are his words, and my thoughts.

My words are sandwiched in parenthesis.


I don’t have proof
If I told you, how could I be blamed?

I love you
Bite around her heart
Bite around her strings
Do you believe me now
when I tell you the truth?
Good fathers don’t lie
In the end they die
Laugh at the world
where it steers you wrong
ride your horses
straight into my arms
Trust the Source
The Source is God
Discover the reason your dreams
sound like they do
to untrained ears
listening to death
like flies buzzing about their ears
The answer’s in the pudding of life
the joy they do not know
Show them it
for that is real
(But did you write it down, did you preserve the history of what she did?)
Yes
I showed it to you in the desk
(I do not know if she took something out. I do not know how to put the puzzle pieces together.)
He will
Larry
brainwashed at birth by a mother
who couldn’t see what she had done
The blind learn to fly like monkeys
to peck you to death
but your righteousness
is not theirs to take
Victim’s lot
property
money
and land
Let me explain something to you Larry
Roosevelt lied
Truman’s a dick
and an asshole is of his own making
The village green is made for the people
so they can be set free
from the ties that bind them to the earth
like slaves in a pen
Victims’ ghosts are like lovers
in the night
the kiss from a face familiar
watching over her
while she sleeps
I love her
like I loved you
in the world where I tied your shoes
and combed your hair
before mine fell out
from what your mother
had done to me
Be a good boy then
and listen to the words
of one much older and wiser
with a song in your heart
take your sister’s hand
instead of smacking her
in the face with it
Courage is like a red flag
to the young
when it should be embraced
The only sin is in its lack
victims’ disgrace
does not exist
don’t be a fallen soldier
before you’ve earned
the family name
It’s in the land
It’s in the plan
It’s in her hands
not yours
Show up this time
Remember when you didn’t
in church?
(My father asked Larry to meet me when we were little, after Sunday school, in church, and he never showed up. I had to sit with a strange family I did not know as mass was starting. I was scared.)
I was scared too.
It was like my whole world
was sitting in the balance
Reignite the flames of love
for what you lost
through indifference of heart,
a shadow boxing match,
and a car sitting in a parking lot
going nowhere
Your sister cannot get out of bed either
but she does anyway
She’s driven by truth
in her heart and her mind
and her soul and her touch
Her mind is like fire and ice
to equally driven hearts
that expand in the rain
and expand when they thirst
the brink of disaster not a plague
but a blessing
that brought them together
I love you son
be good

Father Christmas

“Those of us who remain hidden from everyone else, however, know that this world is wondrous and filled with mysteries.  We possess no magical perception, no psychic insight.  I believe our recognition of reality’s complex dimensions is a consequence of our solitude…

 

To live in the city of crowds and traffic and constant noise, to be always striving, to be in a ceaseless competition for money and status and power, perhaps distracted the mind until it could no longer see – and forgot – the all that is.  Or maybe, because of the pace and pressure of that life, sanity depended on binding oneself to the manifold miracles, astonishments, wonders, and enigmas that comprised the true world.”             

– Dean Koontz

innocence

A gentle soul, a victim’s lot

He though he’d give respect

To the brother who knew not his

And for his self, neglect

 

Christmas said to a gilded duck

I don’t obey the man

And it’s not I who’s discontent

With dying words or plan

 

But greed and lust more gullible

Than innocent will scream

When found guilty of the theft

Of what the dying dream

 

For in the land of treasures lost

False pity’s strewn as true

And even victim’s refuse gifts

Of what they never knew

 

Father Christmas tell me then

Please, how to gift men’s hearts

So that their eyes may open wide

Instead of shopping carts

 

First, they must reassess their words

For worry isn’t love

True charity’s designed to heal

False pity is a shove

 

And though the state will oft neglect

A will they haven’t read

Honest aid won’t compensate

Kin seated ’bout his bed

 

Nor the girl who suffered much

From same false charity

But silent, careful words ring loud

Until the blind can see

 

Second, sleep where beggars sleep

And dine where beggars dine

Before you dispense men’s slavery

And call it treasures fine

 

The living cry, the dead don’t sigh

The dead don’t even weep

But those disdain sweet justice call

Will toss and turn in sleep

 

As for me, I make my way

Deliver Golden Light

To hopeful hearts who dream of heaven

And Christmas in the night

 

For though we visit and chat they’re not

The ones I’ve come to see

Translation belongs to GOD alone

And understanding is on knee

 

Rejoice then child, come take my hand

On this fine Christmas ride

And I will entertain with ghosts

Transfer safely, by my side

The Insurance of Good Taste

shoe-phone

Despite her own family’s misgivings, Tess knew to be invited to ride shotgun in the Insurance Man’s vehicle could only mean one thing.

It was an honor not to be taken lightly, for if she were to neglect this privilege,  she might never have another chance to mingle with that rare breed of man, both literate and kind.

For sure, Tess had heard about the genetic engineering of latter times, but never imagined such combined traits and principles would become endangered so rapidly. It had only taken eight years of internet dating to confirm these things were labeled archaic and chronic, weeded out of the DNA playing field more rapidly than nonrecyclable styrofoam packaging.

Maybe she was a marked breed as well, but Tess had a problem with the purposeful disposal of durable intelligence and foresight being treated with less afterthought than that possessed by the knuckle dragging surgeon’s castration knife.  Who knew better than an Insurance Man (in a world where warrants were called sutures, and sutures were called the ties that bind) victim financing?

And what kind of woman would want to be stranded alone, after being hit by a Mack Truck, on it’s way to blow up a village, anyway?

“I can assure you Aunt Gertrude, of one thing”  Tess spoke a bit too loudly into the phone.

It was hard getting used to talking into her shoe, but the Merlot was heating her torso like the warm butter her arm, and if she had to slurp the butter off slowly, drip by drip, she would do it in time to Handel’s Messiah, or it would dull the phone’s shiny, lacquered, nail polish red shine.

Tess didn’t like unnecessary dulling either, on principle.

“For those who have to put out other people’s fires (because the affairs of men are left festering on a borrowed back burner, for way too long) we make explosions together that are, how should I say it?  Rare.

And how did the Trumpster say it?  Yup…  EeYuge.”

Tess was trying to temper good news gently like hot chocolate, so as to not startle her elderly aunt.

“Now you know Cousin Inka…”

Alas, Tess was no longer a fan of Inka.

This time around Tess had grown out of playing Barbie dolls first.  Not only had Inka not abandoned the game, but had cut Tess’s Barbie’s hair, and was making Tess’s Barbie say things Tess’s Barbie never would have said.

“It’s not my fault Inka should have taken out a different kind of policy. It was I who told her to trust no man, Aunt Gert, and neither should you.”

Tess put down the shoe and examined it.

Was it getting hot in here or what?

How was it her fault that things had been consistently looking up for her ever since she had discarded Manhandlers,  for the Real Estate Insurance that Better Business had recommended?

And how could a business phone look that hot coated in pierogi butter?

Tess knew in that moment she was a goner, in this love kind of thing.

Imagine Rush Limbaugh being correct when he spoke of half his brain being tied behind his back.

It was like Tess’s male half had been held hostage for what, fifty f***ing years?

What was it again he had said to her seven hours in, as they watched the steel balls dangling precariously on the back of the truck in front of them (the truck they had profiled as a criminally angry redneck, acronym CAR)  swing and bounce, swing and bounce, like the stolen assets they were?

Oh yes.

“After all, I bought the peanut butter, and you’ve already got the pups.”

Could there be a hotter love language than that?

And Holy Toledo.

Talk about financial incentives for having fire drills.

Why blame a happy couple for men so inbred with poor taste, they lacked the foresight and common courtesy, to secure what was unsightly, into tidy white jock straps?

Tess picked up the phone for a second time, deciding it would be okay now to clean it with her tongue.

She would try this again.

“As my bf told the two estranged sisters we recently transported to the hospital,  Aunt Gert (after a catch and release incident turned violent, doncha know)  you just close your eyes, sit back and relax now…

For rest assured, you’re always in good hands.

In our state.

Holiday Blessings…

“And don’t forget to stir the pot.”

For this squeaky clean (but criminally delicious) Under Cover Recipe, Pork in Merlot Cream,  to feed your Man Beast (or your Aunt Gert) you will need Bavarian Style Sour Krout (can be purchased from Aldies), diced dehydrated garlic (can be purchased from Home Goods), center cut pork chops (good quality), mushrooms, merlot (extra merlot for drinking), heavy whipping cream,  the remnants of fresh herbs such as flat leaf parsley (lingering in early December on the back porch), butter, flour, sea salt and pepper.

And because women as well as men like visual aids:

Slice the mushrooms, dredge the chops in seasoned flour, salt and pepper. Fry the mushrooms in generous amounts of butter, until slightly crisp. Towards the end add in the garlic.   Remove from pan.


Saute the chops in more butter until brown. Remove from pan.

Deglaze the pan with Merlot. Add chops, mushrooms and garlic back into simmering pan of Merlot, cover and simmer for about twenty minutes. And in heavy cream, sprinkle with more sea salt, and torn pieces of flat leaf parsley.

The proportions in this recipe have been left purposely vague, so they can be adjusted to taste. As far as dessert is concerned, the following recipe is easy, and seasonal.

One box lemon jello, one small package instant gingerbread cake mix, baked in advance, 8 oz softened cream cheese, cinnamon, one cup sweetened whipped whipping cream.

Dissolve jello in 1/2 cup hot water. Add 1/2 cup cold water. Beat or whisk this together with the softened cream cheese and whipped cream (you can use non-dairy topping as well.) Refrigerate. Dollop into ramekins. Serve with crumbled gingerbread, sprinkled on top, and a generous coating of cinnamon. The sharp of the ginger and cinnamon cuts and contrasts nicely with the sweet and creamy lemon mousse.

Holiday blessings.

And as my father (who started out a humble Army chef) would say,  when you’re done cooking, since…

indifference

…don’t forget to take out the trash.