08 May 2005

Happy Mother's Day

...to all of you who are mothers!

Yesterday my DS(ister) called to arrange to meet to collect her pets (I've been pet-sitting for her and her husband), and said, "Want to go to brunch?" and I said, sure - until a brain cell kicked in and I remember I'd heard on the radio it was Mother's Day. We'll hit Starbucks, maybe, instead.

It's been thirteen years since our mother died. This was the first year when I didn't pause on March 7 and remember.

But that's yet another gift of Catholicism. We DO have a Mother to celebrate and make much of, to thank and spend time with. We offer her the flowers from our gardens and from our souls.

05 May 2005

Watching the rain

I live in the foothills northeast of Los Angeles. It has rained a Lot this year. It's raining again today.

I am savouring a few days of vacation this week. I'd hoped to accomplish more, but I get migraines, and this has been a week of them. Thank God for Imitrex, but I still need to rest. And, today, as a special extra blessing, it has rained.

Now, you wouldn't think that was blog-worthy, but in Los Angeles, if one doesn't have sprinklers, the garden must be watered by hand or left to dry out. Even drought-tolerant plants need water. I don't have sprinklers, but have been blessed with a large garden, so am grateful for this year's provision of rain. However, we've had several records broken by the abundance of wet. My heart goes out to those whose property has been damaged, or their lives taken, by too much of this good thing which is soaking my garden this afternoon, and refreshing my soul.

Benedict XVI's theology: more "ressourcement" than "aggiornamento"

Theologians reflect on Pope Benedict XVI's theology

By Jerry Filteau
Catholic News Service

(What follows is an excerpt. Read the entire article here.)

... "This contrast enables us to establish more closely the nature of Ratzinger's 'progressivism' at this point," the British theologian wrote. "It was controlled not so much by the imperative of modernization, or adaptation, 'aggiornamento,' but by that of a return to the biblical, patristic and high medieval sources, 'ressourcement.'"

Father Nichols said that in Father Ratzinger's published notes on the council's fourth session, his objections to the optimism about the world found in "Gaudium et Spes" increased.

In the epilogue to the fourth session notes, he added, Father Ratzinger struck "more than one somber note."

"Here and there, he thought, and perhaps more frequently than this phrase would imply, 'renewal' would be regarded as synonymous with the 'dilution and trivialization of the whole.' Here and there, the pleasure of liturgical experimentation would 'belittle and discredit' the reform in worship. Here and there, people would enquire after modernity, not after truth, and make what was contemporary the measure of all they did," Father Nichols wrote.

Here, and there, and everywhere, especially among the bishops who did not have the courage and humility to wake up and smell the coffee. Better late than never... but late, indeed.

A lot has happened in 40 years. Too much?

Geraniums and morality

Among the gardeners in our family, there was an unwritten rule: you never pay for things like geraniums. You just acquire them.

Here in Southern California they grow almost like weeds. Break off a piece, bury the business end in the ground, water well, and presto! A new geranium plant. Sometimes the cuttings don't even lose their blooms ... what show-offs.

My mother went through a spell when she was in her 50s where she got crazy for geraniums. We'd be driving along and, all of a sudden, she'd yell, "Stop! Stop!! Pull over!!" I thought maybe she'd seen an injured animal or something. I'd stop the car, she'd open the door ... look around furtively ... reach out - snap - back in the car - slam - "Okay, go - quick."

She wasn't larcenous otherwise, but if someone let their geraniums grow enough so that they could be grabbed from the street - a piece would be missing after we passed.

I was tempted myself, the other night. Parked by a showy assemblage of pretty geraniums with sawtooth leaves and dark pink flowers. I could've snagged a piece and no one would have noticed, and in a week it would have grown back... but I didn't. It just doesn't seem right - even though, as a gardener, if someone else felt they'd like some of the geraniums in my front yard, they'd be welcome to nip a small piece for their own. What gets me is that I'll indulge scruples about such things, while allowing sins the size of elephants to sit on my life. Why is that?

Piloti driving shoes

Just check out the link. They're really as good as people say they are... and more comfortable than any other shoes I own. You'd think that here in Southern California everybody'd be wearing 'em by now. If you're gonna spend almost $3.00/gal. for gas, you might as well be comfortable while you're using it up.

Putting a toe in...

...which seems to be how I do everything, if possible: by incremental stages which are so small that there seems to be no progress whatsoever to observers, but to me, sometimes, it feels like a runaway rollercoaster.

More on that later.

In the meantime, I want to join the community of great writers who have inspired me lately here in the neighborhood of 'blogs. It has a wonderfully neighborhood feel to it. Someone will write, "There's a great discussion going on over at Amy's," and we all end up going over there to talk and comment for a while, before following some other link elsewhere, like to selkie, where we find there's been a blessed event, and so on and so on... it's a real community, and I appreciate it, and would like to move in and contribute my mite to the discussion.

Thanks for stopping by.