Thursday, December 27, 2007

Just in time for the New Year...

Have you ever tried to read through the whole Bible in a year? What about the Catechism? What about both the Bible and the Catechism? Well I have some options for you! The Coming Home Network has a pamphlet you can print out to read through the entire Bible and the entire Catechism in one year. It's here (warning: PDF) as a free printout.

Are you familiar with Jeff Cavins' The Great Adventure? I've linked to the site, but let me quote here from the What is The Great Adventure? information page:

"The Great Adventure is a Catholic Bible learning system that makes the complex simple by teaching the story (the narrative) of the Bible...Jeff Cavins developed The Great Adventure in 1984 when he realized that most people, despite their strong faith, did not grasp the 'big picture' of the Bible. Though they knew selected stories, they were not able to connect them into a full narrative. His answer was to identify the books of the Bible that tell the story from beginning to end. By reading just these 14 'narrative' books, a chronological story emerges."

Mr. Cavins has a printable PDF document (also free) on his site that will let you read these 14 narrative books in 90 days. Click here for it. If you're not that ambitious, I've developed my own version of this list which allows one to read these 14 books in a year. If you're interested, e-mail me from my profile page, and I'll e-mail you a copy as a Microsoft Word attachement. Use "Reading guide" as the subject.

Also, I have a Microsoft Word document I can send you as an attachement to read the Catechism through in a year.

My guides use the following format:

01: 257-267
02: 268-274
03: 275-281
04: 282-289
05: 290-294

This example shows you February 1-5 of the Catechism guide. On Feb. 01 one reads paragraphs 257-267; on Feb. 02 one reads paragraphs 268-274; etc,

Both guides have little boxes before the dates you can check when you've done your reading for the day.

If I get enough time, I'll develope a plan to read the entire Bible through in 2 years. Should that ever happen, I'll post it on my blog.

Tuesday, December 25, 2007

Merry CHRISTmas, everyone!

And it came to pass in those days that there went out a decree from Caesar Augustus that all the world should be taxed. (And this taxing was first made when Cyrenius was governor of Syria.) And all went to be taxed, every one into his own city. And Joseph also went up from Galilee out of the city of Nazareth into Judea, unto the City of David which is called Bethlehem (because he was of the house and lineage of David) to be taxed with Mary, his espoused wife, who was great with child. And so it was that while they were there, the days were accomplished that she should be delivered. And she brought forth her firstborn Son, and wrapped Him in swaddling clothes and laid Him in a manger, because there was no room for them in the inn.

And there were in the same country shepherds abiding in the field, keeping watch over their flock by night. And lo, the angel of the Lord came upon them, and the glory of the Lord shone round about them, and they were sore afraid. And the angel said unto them, "Fear not, for behold, I bring you good tidings of great joy, which shall be to all people. For unto you is born this day in the City of David a Savior, who is Christ the Lord. And this shall be a sign unto you: Ye shall find the Babe wrapped in swaddling clothes, lying in a manger."

And suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host praising God and saying,
"Glory to God in the highest,
and on earth peace, good will toward men!"

And it came to pass, when the angels were gone away from them into heaven, the shepherds said one to another, "Let us now go even unto Bethlehem and see this thing which has come to pass, which the Lord hath made known unto us." And they came with haste and found Mary and Joseph, and the Babe lying in a manger. And when they had seen it, they made known abroad the saying which was told them concerning this Child. And all those who heard it wondered at those things which were told them by the shepherds. But Mary kept all these things and pondered them in her heart. And the shepherds returned, glorifying and praising God for all the things that they had heard and seen, as it was told unto them.

Monday, December 24, 2007

Hallelujah Chorus Nuns

I just found this video on YouTube. It's quite funny. I hope you enjoy. (Jeron, I'm sorry you can't watch all the silly videos on my site.)

Sunday, December 23, 2007

My roommate is gone till Christmas.

I get to throw food away with abandon! This means nothing to you reading this, so I'll explain.

My roommate, by his own admission, is cheap. And he has weird ideas about food. Even his mom thinks his food ideas are weird. He thinks spending money on food is a waste of time, so he tries everything he can think of (within ethical and moral limits) to get it for free. Within this past year, his most fruitful plan fell through, so he actually does go to the grocery store now. I, on the other hand, have always gone to the grocery store. I buy food, fully intending to eat it all. Unfortunately, very often I don't make it to the food before it expires. Tim, my roommate, eats things well past the expiration date. Indeed, if there's something in the fridge with a surface layer of mold on it, he will remove the moldy layer and eat what's underneath it! If I knew how to use HTML to make a smiley that is puking, you would see one here. The smiley would not represent Tim puking, it would represent me puking! If I have food that's old, he tells me to let him know about it and not to throw it away so he can eat it. I always so "Okay," but throw the food out anyway. I feel a little guilty about this. Not the lying part, the throwing away food part. It's like I'm being naughty!

But Tim is visiting family out of state till Christmas. I went on a throw-out-food-free-for-all last night. I hope something else expires before he gets back!

Tuesday, December 18, 2007

The Te Deum Laudamus

We praise thee, O God: we acknowledge Thee to be the Lord.
All the earth doth worship Thee, the Father everlasting.
To Thee all Angels cry aloud: the Heavens and all the powers therein.
To Thee Cherubim and Seraphim continually do cry,
"Holy, Holy, Holy: Lord God of Sabaoth;
Heaven and earth are full of the Majesty of Thy Glory."
The glorious company of the Apostles praise Thee.
The godly fellowship of the Prophets praise Thee.
The noble army of Martyrs praise Thee.
The holy Church throughout all the world doth acknowledge Thee;
The Father of an infinite Majesty;
Thine honorable, true, and only Son;
Also the Holy Ghost: the Paraclete.

Thou art the King of Glory, O Christ.
Thou art the everlasting Son of the Father.
When Thou tookest upon Thee to deliver man:
Thou didst not abhor the Virgin's womb.
When Thou hadst overcome the sharpness of death,
Thou didst open the Kingdom of Heaven to all believers.
Thou sittest at the right hand of God in the glory of the Father.
We believe that Thou shalt come to be our Judge.
We therefore pray Thee,
help Thy servants whom Thou hast redeemed with Thy precious blood.
Make them to be numbered with Thy Saints in glory everlasting.

O Lord, save Thy people: and bless Thine heritage.
Govern them and lift them up for ever.
Day by day we magnify Thee; and we worship Thy Name,
ever world without end.
Vouchsafe, O Lord, to keep us this day without sin.
O Lord, have mercy upon us.
O Lord, let Thy mercy lighten upon us: as our trust is in Thee.
O Lord, in Thee have I trusted: let me never be confounded.

I have many ideas for posts...

...but very few of them actually make it to this blog. And when they do, they don't quite turn out the way I expected them to. I spend a lot of time driving for my job. This gives me a lot of time to think. Sometimes, I come up with great ideas for this blog, excellent posts, intelligently written, thoughtful, real sharing from my heart. By the time I get home, I'm too tired to write. Then when I'm finally able to sit down at the computer, my mind goes blank. I wirte silly things like this, or I do one of these. One day, I'll post something with real content again. For example, I could finish up one of my series: The Story of my Faith and Missions, Sex, and All Things New. Maybe I'll make time this coming up weekend, wherein I will (hopefully) have four days off in a row! We shall see.

So many bloggers have written about this lately...

...that I'm going to throw my two cents in, as well.

I shared in a previous post that I was at Urbana '96.* As I said in that post, "Sometimes I miss the unity I used to feel with my Evangelical brothers." When I was an Evangelical, I was ignorant of the true devastation the Great Schism and the Protestant "Reformation" have caused. I wasn't sure if Catholic and Orthodox Christians were actually Christians, so I viewed them as "targets for evagelization". Now that I'm Catholic and have a much better understanding of the nature of the Church, Church history, and, especially, Common-union, it hurts that there's so much division among Christians! It hurts! Sometimes, I cry over the un-community we've created. And remember, it's not just a split between Catholic and Orthodox. The Coptic and Armenian Churches broke off from the Church around 500A.D. The Protestant groups broke off in the 16th century and started fragmenting off from each other. The Old Catholic Church broke off from the Western Church in the 1800s, I believe, and we also have the SSPX, the McFeeny-ites, and other groups. The Orthodox Communion deals with "Old Calendarists" (the Orthodox version of the Catholic "rad Trad"). The Antiochan Orthodox communion broke off from the Orthodox Church in the 20th century. And let us not forget the heretical "Christian" cults: the Watchtower Society, the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints (which has also experienced schism), the Worldwide Church of God, etc. Let us fast, pray, and work to bring the heretics into the Truth, and let us fast, pray, and work to heal all the divisions within the mystical Body of Christ.

*Urbana home page link here.

*History of the Urbana Conventions here.

Thursday, December 13, 2007

I'm dying.

I think that's the message the grey hairs I found in my goatee today are telling me. I'm only thirty-three! I'm too young for this!

Tuesday, December 11, 2007

A Random Conversation I had with a Coworker

Dave: "I think [another coworker] forgot to show the nurse the Trendelenberg function on this (hospital) bed when he placed it."

Me: "I usually forget to tell the nurses how to use Trend. when I place a patient on that bed, too.
Dave: "Fortunately, most of the staff at [the hospital under discussion] know our beds."

Me: "Yeah, but sometimes you find someone that doesn't know anything at all about them, and you have to give them a complete inservice. The other day I was in [one of the ICU departments] and had to give an inservice to a hot nurse...Anthony."

Dave: "You know, it doesn't bother me that you're gay, but when you say 'hot nurse' and follow it up with a guy's name, it kinda throws me."

Thursday, December 6, 2007

"On this very night...

...ten years ago, on the same stretch of road, in a dense fog, just like this, I saw the worst accident I ever seen. There was this sound like a garbage truck dropped off the Empire State building...and when they finally pulled the driver's body from the twisted, burning wreck, it looked like THIS!

"Yes, sir. That was the worst accident I ever seen...

"Be sure and tell 'em Large Marge sent ya! A-haa-haa!"

A New Blog in My Favorite Places on the Web blogroll:

Islam and Christianity

I should have added this one awhile ago. It's full of great information about Islam, Christianity around the world, quotes from the Church Fathers, all kinds of good things!

Use it often. Learn about Islam. Remember Christians from a Muslim background who are persecuted for their faith. Make the issues this blog raises and the information it gives you part of your regular prayer life. And pray for Abu Daoud and his family, too.

Sunday, December 2, 2007

A New Encyclical from our Pope!

Spe Salvi...

So far I've read only the first two paragraphs. Can't wait to read the rest, but I'm taking a nap now. I've been working since 7am! (I don't usually get up till noon-I'm not lazy, I just work a late shift except sometimes on Sundays when it's a really early shift.)

Saturday, December 1, 2007

"You are loved with an everlasting love. That's what the Bible says. And underneath are the everlasting arms."

Thus began the radio program called Gateway to Joy, hosted by Elisabeth Elliot.

I don’t know if anyone who reads my blog is familiar with Elisabeth Elliot. If not, I'd like to introduce you to her. She is the widow of Jim Elliot, whose journal I quoted from in my last post. She and Jim were missionaries in Ecuador. Jim and four other missionaries were killed in an attempt to take the Gospel to a tribe of people who were so fierce the headhunters were afraid of them! A few years after Jim's and the other missionaries' deaths, she wrote a book about it called Through Gates of Splendor.

Elisabeth continued her missionary work for a few more years, and even, with her daughter (born a few months before her father's death) and the sister of one of the other missionaries, went to work for about two years among the tribespeople who had killed her husband. Eventually Elisabeth returned to the US and became a highly respected Evangelical author, speaker, and radio host.

I have never met Elisabeth Elliot, but if I ever get the chance, I will. Her writings have had a great impact on my life, and I hope they continue to do so. In many ways she has been a spiritual mother to me. You know how God is sometimes referred to in the Bible as the God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob? Well, a few years ago, as I was going through a time of great doubt and trouble in my life, I could only pray to God as the God of Jim and Elisabeth Elliot. I wasn't sure if God was with me, but I knew He had been with them.

Elisabeth Elliot is no longer on the radio. In August of 2001 her program went off the air. When she announced that she was discontinuing the show, I cried! The website is still up, but it's not as good as it used to be (it's under constant construction lately). There used to be audio archives on it, but I think Mrs. Elliot asked that they be taken down. I miss those archives! There are transcripts of the broadcasts on the web site.

May God bless Elisabeth Elliot with many more years of life and ministry! Amen and amen!

Here are some links (some of which have been provided in the above paragraphs):

Elisabeth Elliot's web site

Gateway to Joy web site

Elisabeth Elliot on Wikipedia (contains a bibliography)