Friday, August 6, 2010

On the Road

August 6, 2010

The Feast of the Transfiguration

Peace and Good,

I'm a little late this week getting the blog done, but a couple of things got in the way. First of all, there has been travel. I have driven over 1200 miles since this past Saturday. There was the travel from the Chautauqua Institute to Ellicott City, then I travelled up to Totowa, New Jersey and back to meet with my publisher, then from Ellicott City to Carey, Ohio, where I begin a Novena to our Lady for the Feast of the Assumption at the Shrine of Our Lady of Consolation.

The Chautauqua Institute was incredible. It is a cultural institute founded by the Methodists in the late 1800's (originally a tent meeting sort of gathering) on the shore of Lake Chautauqua in south-western New York State. During the season there are bout 12,000 people there. There are lectures, concerts, operas, plays (including plays in progress where one gets to give feedback to the author), etc. The Catholic House is right across a walkway from the outside concert hall, so one can sit on the porch and listen to the lectures or the concerts throughout the day. The Catholic House does have a number of rooms which they rent out. They choose the occupants with a lottery every November, and the price of the rooms is very reasonable (although there are other fees for participating in the activities of the Institute). The people are all relaxed. Everyone is walking or biking around the grounds. It reminds one of a small town in the old days.

A second reason why this blog is so late is that I had a tear duct infection which began ten days ago. At first, I thought it was just an allergy to something, but it got worse and worse until I had to go to the Emergency Room. They gave me antibiotic drops, and I didn't realize how badly I felt until I started to get better. It is incredible that such a small thing can throw one off so much.

I finished a few books/tapes this week. The first is the Guns of August by Barbara Tuchman. This is a book about the beginning of World War I. I had read it a number of years ago, and it was worth rereading. Tuchman is a very good popular historian (although she does not like the Catholic Church).

The second book was A Journal of the Plague Year by Daniel Defoe. This is one of the classics I picked up on my Kindle Reader for free, and I had seen this title for years and wondered what it was about. It speaks exactly about what one would think, the chronicles that an author produces during a year of an attack of the bubonic plague upon London. One sees the reactions that one would expect from a tragedy of such incredible proportions unfolding in the midst of a major city. People flee, panic, try various good and not so good solutions, hunker down, are selfish, are selfless, etc. The plague only really dies out when the city of London suffers from the great fire which burns out the disease. It is good to read when one considers things like the Swine Flu and other new diseases that might hit our world without warning.

A third work was the CD's of a book called the Thirteenth Tale. It is set in England, and concerns a famous author who is dying and the woman whom she chooses to do her biography. The title comes from the fact that the author had written a book called the Thirteenth Tale, but the book only contained twelve tales. Everyone is wondering what the thirteenth tale might be. When one first starts it, it seems like a nice and proper English novel, but there are many wicked turns in the action. It is very well written and worth reading.

My schedule for the coming months is:

08/05/10 - 08/15/10 - Our Lady of Consolation Shrine, Kerry, OH p.o.c. Br. Jeffrey Hines (Novena)

08/28/10 - 09/03/10 - St. Francis of Assisi Friary, Mishawaka, IN 46544 p.o.c. Br. Paschal (Novitiate Talks)

09/11/10 - 09/16/10 - Holy Rosary Cluster, Elma, IA 50628 p.o.c. Fr. Ray Atwood (Parish Mission)

09/18/10 - 09/23/10 - Sacred Heart, Newburgh, NY 12550 p.o.c. Sr. Mary McCarthy/Most Reverend Dominick J. Lagonegro (Parish Mission)

09/25/10 - 09/29/10 - St. John, the Apostle, Kingston, Ontario p.o.c. Fr. David Collins (Parish Mission)

10/02/10 - 10/06/10 - St. Raphael, Burlington, Ontario p.o.c. Fr. Maurice Richard (Parish Mission)

10/08/10 - 10/10/10 - Priestfield Retreat Center, Priestfield, WV p.o.c. Carolyn Protin (SFO Retreat)

10/14/10 - Dominican Retreat Center, McLean, VA 22101 p.o.c. Sr. Agnes (Evening for Married Couples)

10/15/10 - 10/17/10 - Dominican Retreat Center, McLean, VA 22101 p.o.c. Sr. Agnes (Men's Retreat)

10/22/10 - 10/26/10 - St. Julia Church, Siler City, NC 27344 p.o.c. Reverend James Fukes (Parish Mission)

11/06/10 - 11/11/10 - Sacred Heart, La Plata, MD 20646 p.o.c. Fr. Ron Potts (Parish Mission)

11/13/10 - 11/18/10 - St. Alphonsus, Wexford, PA 15090 p.o.c. Fr. Peter P. Murphy (Parish Mission)


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