Sunday, December 10, 2017

Rome - Boston

December 10, 2017 Peace and Good, I was in Rome this past couple of weeks. We had a very long definitory, meeting with some of the men who work with the causes of Blesseds and Saints, with our office of Justice and Peace, and with our office for Ecumenism. We also met with the definitories of some of our Italian provinces. After the meetings finished, I worked on a series of daily reflections to get ahead of the game because I will be travelling extensively these next few weeks. I also finished a series of articles for our magazine in Kenya and a couple of articles for our magazine in Padua. Then we had our big celebration on the Feast of the Immaculate Conception. During the novena, we have a different cardinal each day. On the feast itself, it was Cardinal Re. Yesterday I travelled with our Minister General, fr. Benedict Baek, fr. Donald Kos to Boston. We were stopping off in Boston to drop Donald off. He had lived in Rome for 59 years in service to the Order and the Church. His health is failing a bit now, and so we brought him home to be in the Old Friars home in Chicopee, Massachusetts. Today the General and I take off for San Jose, Costa Rica where we will be celebrating a custodial chapter which marks the union of two jurisdictions (something we have been working toward for over seven years). I have finished some reading: You’ll Apologize If You Have to by Ben Fowlkes This is a short story of a professional octagon fighter who loses a battle and end up unconscious and with a huge bruise on his face. He returns home, and has a bad meeting with his ex-wife and child, and another bad meeting with a stranger whom he encounters while walking on the beach. He had just smoked a joint, and the man objects to what he did. The protagonist pushes him to sit down where he is, in the sand and the mud. He later goes back to apologize because he is afraid that the man will call the police on him, and he meets the man’s wife who is much older than he and welcomes the fighter into here home. White Guy in a Djelleba by Michael Chabon This is a travel story about how Michael Chabon is on a trip in Morocco with his family. He is going to a particular village, and his driver goes off track, causing everyone a bit of anxiety. It turns out that the family had asked for lunch somewhere where they served more than couscous, for they were already getting sick of it. The driver had taken them to a market/barbacue place where they get the best meal they were to have while in Morocco. It is a nice story of typical tourist anxiety with a happy ending. How Chance and Stupidity have Changed History: the Hinge Factor by Erik Durschmied This is a good book on a series of battles and historic events in which plain dumb luck or plain stupidity played a major role in the ultimate result. It speaks of battles all throughout history as well as things such as the fall of the Berlin Wall. The author gives enough datail to picture what was happening as well as a bit of speculation concerning the “what if” this or that had happened. Gabrielle Glaser The False Gospel of Alcoholics Anonymous This is an essay in a collection of scientific articles. AA has been considered to be the only way to fight alcoholism, but this article challenges this belief. It speaks of attempts to treat alcoholics in Finland with a mix of medication and counseling which can result in total abstinence or a much lower level of drinking. This is an interesting detail in the article, for AA takes it as a given truth that alcoholics can never drink again, a truth that this article challenges. I am not sure I buy all of its conclusions, but it certainly gives one much to think about. The Big Cat by Louise Erdich This is a strange little story about a man who marries into a family in which all of the women snore incessantly. He speaks of family get togethers as torture during which he rarely slept. He eventually divorces his wife, has an affair with her, and then remarries her. Have a good week. Shalom fr. Jude Winkler


Post a Comment