Friday, December 11, 2009

Missions and Talks

December 11, 2009

Peace and Good,

All is well. Sorry that I am a little late in posting the blog this week, but I was working hard on the CD project for the Psalms workshop. I finished it last night. It ended up with six CD's and I am very pleased with how it turned out. If you want to order it, just e mail me at It will cost $30 but I am not sure how much postage will be.

I preached a mission in St. Francis Parish in Vista, CA. It is in the San Diego diocese, not far from San Marcos where I gave a mission in October. The themes I developed were how we are called to the dignity of the children of God through our prayer (sharing in God's work of recreating the world in God's image) through our service of the broken and difficult people of this world. I spoke of how we damage that relationship with our addictions to things and attitudes. The last morning I gave a talk on some of the aspects of the Infancy narratives in Luke and Matthew. That afternoon and evening I helped with the two Advent penance services in the parish. The parish itself is quite large with large Anglo and Spanish elements along with a good sized Vietnamese contingent. They are especially committed to serving the poor (which is witnessed in the number of homeless who sleep on the grounds each evening).

On Sunday, I celebrated Mass in the morning with a lay run community in Relay. It is always like going back home when I am with them. In the evening I gave a talk on the Book of Genesis at St. Timothy parish in Walkersville, MD - about an hour away. On the evening of the 8th I gave a talk on the dogma of the Immaculate Conception here at the friary (I taped it and will have it out on CD sometime after Christmas). On Wednesday, I had a talk on the Infancy Narrative in Luke with the scripture sharing group at Blessed Sacrament Parish in Bethesda, MD, and a talk on the Psalms at Resurrection Parish in Ellicott City.

I have some great news. I had put out an all call to ask for help to get to Ghana this coming June. A very generous couple have given me a free ticket with their air miles program. I am so grateful to them. If anyone wants to send some help for this trip (incidental costs) or other trips to mission countries, we are setting up a small fund to help out with these needs.

I finished a couple of CD books. The first is The Glory of it All by Sean Wilsey. It was a difficult listen. It is about a boy whose parents break up. They are incredibly self absorbed. The new step mother is described as being a witch to the boy. He gets into all kinds of self-destructive activity, pretty much messing up his life until he is sent to a rescue program in Italy to bring him around. It shows what happens to children when parents are too absorbed with their own activities and lives.

The second book was Next by Michael Crichton. It is a book about genetic tinkering and shows some of the possible consequences of bad choices made by individuals and companies.

I also finished a spiritual reading book: Experience the Mystery: Pastoral Possibilities for Christian Mystagogy by David Regan. The book comes across like a doctoral thesis that is somewhat reworked to make it a little easier to read. His theses is that we need a way to invite people into the mystery of our Catholic Christian life in a holistic manner (and not just intellectually). He used the example of small faith sharing groups (base communities) in Latin America. The book offers some good insights, but it doesn't offer enough practical applications.

I will be in Valley Lee, MD this week for an Advent mission. In the future, I will post some of my future assignments on this site so if anyone wants to catch me in a site near your home, you will know in advance (I'll try to keep it a month ahead).

God Bless and

fr. Jude


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