Wednesday, June 9, 2021


June 9, 2021 Peace and Good, I have been in the Atlanta area since the 1st. We have three friaries in this area, one of which I had never seen before. The first friary I visited was in Columbus Georgia. It is about 2 hours southwest of Atlanta, on the Alabama border. We actually have three parishes there. One is a small African American parish, one a small Hispanic parish, and one a large Anglo/Hispanic parish with a grammar school and high school. All three are being run very, very well by the friars. The large parish also has a huge outreach to the poor (food, clothes, rental and utilities assistance, etc.). I was very impressed. The second friary I visited was in Jonesboro, just south of the city. It is an Anglo/African/African-American/Hispanic parish. I celebrated a couple of Masses there, which was great doing a bit of pastoral work. This was the first Sunday that they were wide open after the pandemic, and it was obvious that many people were coming back. The third friary, where I am now, is on the northeast side of Atlanta, Holy Cross Parish. It is Anglo/Hispanic. There are about 2700 registered families, but many of the Hispanics are not registered for various reasons. Yesterday I spend the morning on a zoom assembly for the friars in Canada. They have formed a new jurisdiction, and they are trying to get off the ground. Last week, on the 4th, I had another zoom meeting with the provincials of our federation. The zoom process is great, but it really tires one out after a couple of hours. Tomorrow I fly to Louisville where I will be for five days, just being available if any of the friars want to stop by and chat. I finished some reading: The History of Bourbon by Ken Albala This is a course from the Teaching Company. They have now joined with Audible, and the Audible company offers a series of free courses each month. This was one of them. The author is an expert on food and drinks at one of the universities. He speaks about the history of the making of bourbon and its popularity (or fall in popularity) in various eras. Greg Hurwitz by Audible Interviews In these two interviews, Hurwitz speak about his series, the Orphan X books. Even is orphan x, an orphan who was trained to be a killer. He escapes his minders and tries to put his life together while he is trying to right wrongs in society. The minders (and he doesn’t know who is behind them) try to eliminate him. He has to rely on a series of experts in various techniques to remain alive. The Rise of Communism by Professor Vejas Liulevicius This is a 12 lecture series on the beginnings of communism from the Teaching Company. The professor is very, very prepared, and his method of instruction is very good. While each lesson is packed with details and quotations, it is never overwhelming. I would recommend this course and others by him to anyone. Deadly Outbreaks by Alexandra Levitt This is a book that covers a series of outbreaks of mysterious illnesses that had to be investigated by the CDC over the years. They include hantavirus in the Southwest, Legionnaires’ Disease, an outbreak of Salmonella, etc. It is well written, and it shows the great difficulties that can be faced in trying to track down information and identify a cause for the various outbreaks. Forever Odd by Dean Koontz This is the second in the series about Odd Thomas. He is a fry cook in a desert California town who can see and help ghosts. Each of the volumes is an adventure in which he must defeat some of the forces of evil that attack him or his town or his friends. In this volume, he must rescue one of his friends who suffers from brittle bone disease for a mad enchantress and her minions. The English Sweating Sickness by Charles River Editors This is an account of a disease the periodically attacked England (and very few other areas) during the Tudor period. Henry VIII was deathly afraid of it, and even Anne Boleyn suffered from it. The book cannot fully identify exactly what the disease was, but it gives good information on how people reacted to it. 1861: the Civil War Awakening by Adam Goodheart This is one of the better historic books that I have read in a long time. The author deals with the first year of the war, but he also gives a good treatment to many of the people involved in the action and sociological background to why things happened the way they did. Although I have read quite a bit on the Civil War, there were a number of things that I had never heard about before. The style is pleasant. I highly recommend this book. Have a good week. Shalom fr. Jude


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