Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Thomas Becket, Archbishop of Canterbury, Martyr; 1170



When Thomas Becket was a young man he was an unlikely candidate for Martyrdom.  


Chancellor of England and good friend of King Henry the II, he lived the good life (for medieval times anyway) He enjoyed the wealth and power that came with his high position.

Then Henry II decided to make him archbishop.  At this time there was a power struggle going on between the King and the church and Henry no doubt thought putting his good buddy in such a position would strengthen his position.  He thought Becket would take his side.


The King was in for a surprise.  


Perhaps Thomas Becket surprised himself.  He rose to the occasion.   As he described it he changed from being “a patron of play actors and a follower of hounds to a shepherd of souls”.  He led a much more austere life, looked after the interests of the church and did not take Henry’s side in his quarrels with the church.
 
Becket became such a throne in Henry’s side that in a rage he is said to have demanded “Who will rid me of this turbulent priest?”  There is always someone to indulge the king and on December 29, 1170, four knights murdered the archbishop in front of the altar in his cathedral.

The people were shocked by this brazen murder of their Archbishop. Beckett was soon declared a saint and King Henry subjected himself to a public whipping by monks of the abbey as penance.

You just never know what you are capable of until you are called.  



And if God puts you in a position, God must figure you can handle it. 

Almighty God, you granted your martyr Thomas the grace to give his life for the cause of justice: Keep your household from all evil and raise up among us faithful pastors and leaders who are wise in the ways of the Gospel; through Jesus Christ the shepherd of our souls, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever.  Amen.
 

Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Michael Vick the Poster Child for Employing Rehabilitated Convicts?




Pardon me while I gag!

I started a post on Vick a while back when I heard he wanted a dog.  As a condition of his probation he is not allowed to have a dog.  But he wants a dog "So the public can see that I really love animals"  That statement alone tells me he should not have a dog.  

I'm all for forgiveness.  But I don't send wives back to live with abusive husbands and NO DOGS for Micheal Vick.

That's what I was going to say about that.  But I think I had to go work or something annoying like that.  

Now I'm all for forgiveness. 



I'm not like a lot of animal lovers who want to tie Vick up in chains and treat him the way he treated his dogs.  

Back then he didn't know it was wrong to slam a dog's head against the wall.  Now he knows it's wrong so he won't do it anymore.  Good for him!  I don't even begrudge him his job back with the Eagles.

But seriously President Obama calling Eagles owner, Jeffrey Lurie and CONGRATULATING him for giving Vick his job back because convicts have such a hard time getting jobs? 

SERIOUSLY? 

 I want to smack our president up side the head for that, not Vick.  

Micheal Vick had the job he dreamed of, a lot of money, everything and he chose to entertain himself by abusing animals.  Now he has the job he has dreamed of, is going to make a lot of money again and will probably talk a judge into letting him use another animal to rehabilitate his public image.  

WHAT THE HELL DOES HE HAVE IN COMMON with your average convict who cannot get a job?  

I could just spit.  

In the words of Mr. Knightley to Emma, "Badly done, Mr. President.  BADLY DONE!"

The Slaughter of the Innocents

Massacre of the Innocents Léon Cognie

When Herod saw that he had been tricked by the wise men, he was infuriated, and he sent and killed all the children in and around Bethlehem who were two years old or under, according to the time that he had learned from the wise men. ~ Matthew 2:16


You know, I don't really care if this particular act of oppression actually happened.


 It symbolizes the reality of the evil that occurs when human beings put their lust for power above all else.   This is the world God entered.  A world where the weak and vulnerable are sacrificed for the sake of the powerful.

Why did God allow this to happen? 



 Why didn't God save the babies of Bethlehem?  Why doesn't God save the children who are stolen and sold into sex slavery today?  For that matter why doesn't God just snap his fingers and make everything all better?  

Why do we have to even bother with a baby born in a stable, with wisemen and stars and a crucifixion for that matter?

Who knows?  But here's a clue.  

The world where babies are killed on the whim of a power hungry king is the world that we humans create.  So what makes us think we have a better idea than God how to save it?

This I know.  


The world where innocents are sacrificed for the powerful is coming to an end.   



Perhaps the purpose of throwing this dark story at us at this time is to keep us from turning Christmas into our own private little family time.    

What does it mean for us today to worship one who came “throw down the mighty from their thrones”?  While we wait for Jesus to return and establish his Kingdom of justice, love and compassion, what can we do today for those who suffer from oppression, loneliness and unkindness? 




Friday, December 24, 2010

Joyeux Noel

Sleeping Virgin with Infant~Deborah Sorrentino



To me there is no greater consolation given to mankind than this, that Christ became man, a child, a babe, playing in the lap and at the breasts of his most gracious mother. Who is there whom this sight would not comfort? Now is overcome the power of sin, death, hell, conscience, and guilt, if you come to this gurgling Babe and believe that he is come, not to judge you, but to save.
~Martin Luther's Christmas Sermon

Monday, December 20, 2010

Oven Barbecued Country Ribs



It took me a long time to come up with a barbecue sauce I liked.  I like it sweet and smokey. With a little spice.  

This is a picture of tonight's ribs which are boneless but that's only because they didn't have the bone-in ribs.  It is SO MUCH BETTER with the bone.  Much more taste and gets more tender with the marrow.

I use Penzeys Barbecue of Americas spice which is a mixture of nutmeg, cinnamon, pepper and ginger.  I shake that on the ribs, a little granulated garlic, salt and pepper and about a half cup of Chardonnay.  Stick that in the crock pot and cook it for  a few hours.  My crock pot cooks too fast - only 4 hours - You should be able to put this in the morning and have it ready when you come home from work.

Then melt a couple of tablespoons of butter in a sauce pan.  That's REAL butter.  NOT margarine.  Add a cup of your favorite barbecue sauce and a cup of ketchup.  Add 1/4 cup of brown sugar,  a few shakes of liquid smoke, a few tablespoons balsamic vinegar.  If you have some peach or apricot jam, put a couple of tablespoons in too, plus bout 1/4 cup white wine.  A few shakes the Penzeys's spice or a little cinnamon, nutmeg and ginger.  A few shakes cayenne pepper.  Simmer on low for about 10 minutes.

Take the ribs out.  If they are on the bone, it will just fall off the bone at this point.  Put the ribs in a pan.  Smother them with the barbecue sauce.  Bake at 325 for 30 minutes.  We always have this with baked potatoes.  You know you can nuke your potatoes in the microwave for 4 minutes, then stick them in the oven for only about a half an hour and they will taste baked.  This is a family favorite.

Friday, December 17, 2010

A Christmas Tradition I was Unaware of


Until last night I was unaware that Isaac would always point his storm trooper toward one of Sarah's skaters or Barbies on the tree...

Friday Five - Christmas Past


Pretty simple task from the RevGalBlogPals-  Tell us about five Christmas memories you have.

1,  My parents were divorced.  We didn't have a big family so we didn't have those big crazy get togethers.  One of my first memories that I have is telling my mother I wanted a certain doll and telling my father I wanted a different doll and I got both dolls.  Now they made a big thing of that like that was something sneaky I did to get two dolls.  But it never occurred to me they would get me the same present.  They didn't do anything else together why the hell should they get together to give me one present?  
2.  One more childhood Christmas story.  Because most of them were just not that memorable.  One year my mom decided instead of us staying home and feeling bad that we were alone on Christmas we should go to Disneyland.  On Christmas Day.  That was fun.

3.  Fast forward to my first Christmas in Wisconsin with my soon to be husband, Loren.  1985 I believe. I bought a little tree.  A real one.  I just bought some gold thread covered balls, gold lights and tied gold ribbons on it.  Loren gave me diamond earrings.  I don't remember what I gave him.    I did go to his family's house and had Ludefisk which I didn't think was so bad.  That night I threw up all night.  After midnight service we (well I) went ice skating on a pond in 17 below weather.   Loren watched from his truck.  He said it was the best Christmas he ever spent.

4.  Fast forward to several years later and Loren and I were married.  You had to hide presents from him because he would peak.  He would shake and guess.  I could never surprise him with a gift.  Then one year we were at a toy show and he saw a Ertl toy version of an Allis Chalmers tractor he actually had when he was younger.   We were dirt poor those days.  It was $30.  He could not justify paying $30 for a toy tractor.  




I took the guys card, called him the next day, had him mail me the tractor and told him it was a surprise.  When it came I put it in doll box and put that in another box and wrapped it.   THIS was the year I was going to surprise him for Christmas!

Well the box threw him but it just so happened he had called the guy later about the tractor and the guy who was usually very talkative said "It's sold" and hung up on him.  Based on that alone, Loren guess I bought for him.  But the box threw him off.  After that I gave up trying to surprise him.

5.  Our first Christmas after Loren died.  It was five months after he died.  I don't remember much about it other than it was not sad.  I think I spent a little too much on gifts and decorations trying to make up for it but mostly I decided I was going to be joyful about what I did have and I did.  I got the church youth group - mostly football players to get up on my roof and hang LOTS of lights around the house.  It was late in morning and my daughter Sarah remembers being scared to death looking outside her window and seeing a kid with a ski mask on her roof.  But what I remember is how much difference making up my mind to think about all the things I DID have and not what I'd lost made.  It was a lovely Christmas.

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Rita Nakashima Brock on "The Importance of Mary's Virginity"

There is an interesting piece in the Huffington Post on how Mary's virginity is more about resistence to the Roman Empire than Mary's "purity:"

Rita Nakashima Brock writes:

We might describe the story of Mary as a powerful rejection of patriarchal family systems and imperial powers that oppress everyone subject to them. By blessing her and trusting her with the Spirit in human flesh, God challenges the rich, proud, and haughty, which means those who love her story and follow Jesus ought to be doing the same. 

I wish she had fleshed this out more and spent less time on a history lesson.  However, this is a blog post in the Huffington Post, not a religious journal.  

But the idea intrigues me as it goes along with my theory that at the heart of many of the stories and legends the virginity and chastity of the early women saints and martyrs are a protest against a culture that gives women no say over who has control over their bodies.  I said more about this when I wrote about Santa Lucia last year.

In another life I'd write a doctoral thesis on this subject.  Someday someone will or write a book and I will bemoan the fact that I thought of it first but then remind myself I did nothing about it and be glad someone else fleshed it out.  Hopefully.  Or maybe I will write that dissertation.  I'm not dead yet, as my late husband used to say when I nagged him about things he hadn't done.

Sunday, December 12, 2010

It's a Wonderful Life (As Long as you are not an Old Maid)

 Don't get me wrong.  I LOVE LOVE LOVE "It's a Wonderful Life".  I watch it every year.  I know it by heart.  I just love the message of how every single person impacts their world.  As we get more and more into a culture that encourages people to just follow their dream, whatever the consequences, I like the message of learning to appreciate and love the life you are "stuck with" even if you never fulfill your dream of traveling the world.

But even when I was a kid, there was one scene that bugged me.  It's when, after discovering all the terrible things that happen in a world without George Bailey, Clarence has to break the news to George about the worst thing that happened to poor Mary.  And he can barely choke the words out..."She's....an OLD MAID" 

An OLD MAID? OH NO!  Worse than the town being ruined by Potter.  Worse than poor old Mr. Gower accidentally poisoning a child in his grief and going to prison.  Worse even than his own brother drowning because he wasn't there to save him.   Poor Mary has turned from a vibrant, happy, clever woman into a fearful, dried up old maid.  Who needs glasses now!

To be fair, perhaps it's just a way of making it clear to George, who always thought Mary could do better than him, that no, he was the one she loved and wanted.  But I see a more sinister message.

This is 1946.  Right after WW2  women dropped their children into daycare and went about the business of holding the country together without the menfolk just fine thank you very much.  Perhaps the women needed a not-so subtle message that they really did need the menfolk?

Or maybe I've just seen this movie too many times and am overthinking it.

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Kelly Fryer's Note to the Church "STOP HOGGING CHRISTMAS!"




STOP HOGGING CHRISTMAS!


Okay that's not her exact words, that's my take on it. Kelly Fryer is always trying to get the church to stop hogging the Gospel to itself. Now she's taking on the Advent Conspiracy in A Renewable Holiday Season And I agree with everything she says.

I've been thinking along these lines for awhile now.  I even had a throw away line in my sermon about how we need to stop being so judgmental about the shopping malls at Christmas as those shopping malls give people jobs so that they can fix a nice Christmas dinner for their families.  A lady in the congregation who owns a store thanked me.  

Just think how she feels with all the scolding about shopping that goes on for Christmas?   

To quote Fryer:
Here's a message that would make more sense this year: SPEND MORE...wisely.
If you've got it, by all means friends, use it to do what matters. Give it away to help the poor. But, also, go spend it at your local florist, bookstore, or clothing shop. Invest it somewhere that will give life and make a difference.
The truth is I've given lip service to this "advent conspiracy" - don't spend money, make your own gifts, be simple gospel, but I never lived it or believed it. 

I LOVE Christmas decorations and lights and SHOPPING for presents.



I've had light up reindeer in my yard. 

Our first Christmas, we were pregnant and poor and my husband and I saw this SILLY USELESS "Santa's band" - where Santa and his elves played 50 Christmas songs on bells.  

It was $50.  $50 was a LOT of money in 1987.  No self-respecting advent conspirator would buy thatIt had nothing to do with Jesus.  But it made my husband and I smile.  And that was our Christmas present to each other.   

Today Santa's band is hopelessly tangled up, it takes up way too much space, the bells are broken so the carols sound pretty weird but the kids insist I get it out every year.


Fryer also challenges us to stop with the "them vs. us" thinking and this "take Christmas back" mentality.   

She's got the nerve to suggest that we stop insisting people can only have Christmas if they come to church.  

She suggests we get out there and celebrate THEIR Christmas with them.... 


And, in whatever way you can think of, be more Ho-Ho-Ho and a lot less Holier-Than-Thou.

Amen sister!  Now I need to go out and BUY MORE LIGHTS!

Saturday, November 27, 2010

Lutherans, Hogs and Social Statements

The ELCA has released a  Draft Social Statement on Genetics 
a while ago.  And so now is why a congregation in North Dakota is leaving the ELCA.    Obie Holmen over at Spirit of a Liberal has a good post about how STUPID PEOPLE are about believing  CRAP they read on the internet and reaching all kinds of crazy conclusions and then blaming everything on the ELCA.  Okay well, he says it nicer.

I'd just like to make a few comments.  First of all, the HYPOCRISY of some of this rhetoric is making my eyes bleed.  These are the same people who want the ELCA to have a social statement that tells women exactly what they should do with their bodies and their pregnancies.  But tell a FARMER what do to do with his SEED CORN???  Oh no.  HOW DARE THE ELCA suggest that you know, maybe God and the Gospel and ethics is not just about pregnant women but maybe has something to do with YOUR life??

And what is with all these comments about how terrible social statements are and how they are divisive, and the church sticking its nose where it doesn't belong and yadda yada.

I LIKE social statements.  Even ones I don't agree with or don't think are written all that well.  If Pastors would just USE THEM the way they are supposed to be used, we would all be better off.  

I lay a whole wad of blame on ELCA pastors for our current situation.  Pastors who a) are too wussy to share with their congregations what they learned about biblical scholarship so we have a boatload of lay people who think respecting biblical authority equals being fundamentalists.  And b)  I blame pastors for being too chicken and too lazy for getting out the social statements, beating the doors and dragging people to study them.

The problem is not enough people have had a chance to look at social studies with their pastor and fellow Christians.   It's not just that people have no idea what these studies say, it's that people don't understand their purpose.  They think they are supposed to be some sort of Papal Decree stating definitively- "This is What the ELCA Believes about That".  That's not what they are for.  They are to give us resources to teach us how to talk about things in the world that are difficult.  They are to teach us how to have conversations with Christian brothers and sisters with whom we disagree.  They are to teach us to wrestle with difficult issues, think about these things and use what we have heard and learned and thought about when it comes to our day to day living.  And they teach us to live with ambiguity which always drives us back to Grace.   We can never be certain of anything but God's mercy and grace.  We just do the best we can and cling to God's grace.  

We'd all be much better off if we had more practice doing that.

So pastors, dig that damned draft out of your back file and put a study on the calendar.  Offer Christmas cookies.  But do the study. 

Not really skating with the Stars


I don't really like this show as much as you think I would.   I remember when Fox had their version and it annoyed me for two reasons.  First of all, Lloyd Eisner, who I used to be a big fan of back when he competed in the 90s with Isabell Brasseur, goes and knocks up his "celebrity" partner  when his wife just had a baby.   Kind of spoiled the whole show for me.

The other thing that bothered me is that I've skated for more than ten years and these people get out there and make it look like all you need is a couple of weeks and skating's really not that hard and why can't I skate like that?

But if you take a good look --these celebrities are not actually skating much at all.  Obviously some have more of a knack at it than others - like the star of my favorite Soap "All My Children" Rebecca Budig.  She looks really good.  But really what she is good at is holding a pose.  And her partner was very good at pulling her around and choreographing a program that makes her look good without having to actually skate much.

Because skating IS harder than dancing.

But Johnny Weir is a judge and he skated and that alone makes it worth tuning in.



Friday, November 26, 2010

Friday Five - Pie



The RevGalBlogPals are discussing pie.....


1) Are pies an important part of a holiday meal?  Yes.  One year at my sister-in-law's they served some kind of pumpkin bar instead of pie.  It just was not right.

2) Men prefer pie; women prefer cake. Discuss.  Well I know my husband preferred pie and so does my son.  I think it might have something to do with the fact usually it's the women who make pies (though my husband made a mean sweet potato pie) and pies are more trouble to make than cake.

3) Cherries--do they belong in a pie?  Well of course.  But pitting them can be a pain.

4) Meringue--if you have to choose, is it best on lemon or chocolate?  I'm not real crazy about meringue.   I prefer chocolate or lemon cream pie.

5) In a chicken pie, what are the most compatible vegetables? Anything you don't like to find in a chicken pie?  Onions and carrots are a must.  I don't like peas.

More about pie...

Regarding crust.  I am more a cook than a baker.  People are usually better at one than the other.  They require different skills.  Baking requires precision.  Cooking requires experimentation.  I am not precise.  I cannot make a decent pie crust.  I can't manipulate it. You can't mess with pie crust.  The more  you manipulate it the worse it tastes.  You need to make it, roll it and put in the pie tin, no fooling around or repairing the torn part or rolling it up in a ball and starting over.   I just can't do it. I buy the refrigerated pre- made crusts.  They taste decent but of course home made is better.  But not my homemade. 

I make good pumpkin pie.  I make it with sweetened condensed milk.   Makes a richer pie.  But I really think anything made with pumpkin taste better if you use squash or sweet potatoes instead.  The only reason people make pumpkin pie is because that's all pumpkin is good for - to be mixed with sugar.

A fun thing I like to do with fruit pies is cut out the top dough with cookie cutters.  

Enough about pie.  Today I take crap to the Good Will and pack more.  Moving day is Monday.   I still have hope I will be ready by then.

PS - Joan's blog about canned filling reminded me of a story when I was younger.  I had a boyfriend who liked pie.  I wasn't much into cooking or baking then but I would buy a pre made crust, dump a can of fruit pie filling in it, bake it and it was plenty good enough for him.
So I was living in a rented room in a house with a couple of other girls and an old lady who owned the house.  One of the girls grabs me in the kitchen and shows me the empty fruit can and starts ranting "Look at this -- Wilma (the landlady) made this pie --she used premade crust and CANNED filling!  Isn't that horrible!  My mother is a gourmet cook and she would have a stroke if she saw that"  I tried to interrupt her and say that it was me because I was not ashamed.  But she just kept going on and after awhile  I felt like I would embarrass HER if I said anything.  Later that day I grabbed my pie and went out the door and waved at her.  She never said a word.  My boyfriend loved the pie and loved the effort. 

Thursday, November 25, 2010

Have a Very Lutheran Thanksgiving.



Which means JELLO of course:

1 6 oz  Box Raspberry or Orange Jello
1 can jelled Cranberry Sauce
1 8 oz can crushed pineapple

Prepare jello as directed.  Let set an hour to an hour an a half.  Mix in cranberry sauce and pineapple well. 

There.  Now you can have a real Lutheran Thanksgiving.

PS - I DO make real cranberry sauce with fresh cranberries as well, but this has been a family tradition since the kids were tots.

Monday, November 22, 2010

Knowing only Christ

When I came to you, brothers and sisters, I did not come proclaiming the mystery of God to you in lofty words or wisdom. For I decided to know nothing among you except Jesus Christ, and him crucified. And I came to you in weakness and in fear and in much trembling.  I Corinthians 2:1-3


Yesterday was my last Sunday.  

Next Sunday the church I have served the passed five and half years will vote to leave the ELCA and the day after that I will move to a new home.

I usually use the above text for my farewell sermons.  This time there was no farewell sermon.  I just didn't have it in me to preach that kind of a sermon under these circumstances.  

It's been very difficult for me to find the balance between forgiving, leaving gracefully but not being "Minnesota nice" and pretending everything is okay and normal.  To me the answer as been to live those words of Paul - to decide to know only Christ and him crucified.

I've been in conflicted congregations.  I've been targeted by "alligators"  I've been a scapegoat.  Most pastors have.  It's not pleasant but you learn to deal with it.

I've never been in a congregation where the people just basically stopped listening to you.  

The last year there has basically been absolutely no respect for me as the pastor.    People chose to believe things they read from strangers on the internet instead of me.   People pretty much ignored me except for that cursed "Minnesota nice" where they are nice to your face and turn around and say God knows what about you behind your back.


But the one power they could not take away from me was the power to preach the gospel.  


I still got in that pulpit every Sunday and preached the Gospel.  The more they complained about "Gospel lite" and "too much grace"  the more I preached grace and forgiveness and God's love.  

Many ignored it, some tried to argue against it, but I'm convinced some heard it.  

All I had was Christ and him crucified and the Gospel and I preached it.  


And that's how I survived.  

Until the last day when I had no sentimental tear jerking farewell sermon.  All I had was Christ and him crucified and that's what I preached.  

And to me it just proves what I've suspected all along---there's lots of things people think pastors ought to do these days and that's all fine.  But Lutherans have always taught the ordained ministry is about the Word and the Sacrament.

  Yesterday all I had was the Gospel and the words - "Take and eat, the body and blood of Christ, given and poured out for you, for the forgiveness of sin "

I will say more about what I learned this past year.  But I still need time to figure out how to say it in a way that helps me forgive this congregation but also recognizes that they do need my forgiveness.

I needed forgiveness too and of course part of the problem was that they were pretty unforgiving.  

Pastors need forgiveness.  Forgiveness helps me repent.    

It's so backwards when we insist repentance comes first.  


It is when forgiveness is withheld from me that I turn to justifying and rationalizing and excusing myself.  It is when I am forgiven that I can humbly accept my error and resolve to do better next time.  

Being unforgiven leaves a gaping wound.  


If forgiveness is  not forthcoming then the only way to heal that wound is to forgive the unforgiveness.


Love.  Grace.  Forgiveness.  That is all there is.

Sunday, November 7, 2010

Airing our Dirty Laundry

Lately pastors in my synod have taken to handing over correspondence between their church, themselves and the bishop and spreading their version of confidential meetings with the bishop all over the internet.    This is because they believe they are victims of our big bad bully of a bishop, Steven Ullestad. Here is what I'm talking about.  Bishop Suspends Zions Pastors

Rather odd that these are the same group that want to restore LAW to it's rightful place and tone down all the grace stuff.  Except of course when THEY are the ones who are being asked to JUST FOLLOW THE DAMNED RULES already.

If you are an ELCA pastor, you can't serve another denomination without permission.  That includes LCMC and NALC.  "But but but!" They stutter.  "Nobody worried about the rules when there were gay pastors not following Visions and Expectations.

Well actually, there were.  Quite a few pastors and churches were disciplined.  And I know that the bishop who is doing the disciplining now, WOULD have been disciplined pastors and congregations had he occasion to in his synod.  I have heard him say he thought bishops who did not should have.  But he respected the reasoning of those who did not.

I just think it is unseemly to be sending letters the bishop wrote to YOU PERSONALLY to newspapers. But of course that is the way of this reality TV culture.  Invite everyone into your business to make judgments and take sides without a) having all the facts  b) any right whatsoever to make a judgment on the matter.


Anyway I trust our bishop.  And feel really bad he has to put up with this crap.  And am very proud that he is taking the high road and not engaging on the same level. 


And if these are the kinds of people who are leaving the ELCA -- sorry but good riddance.

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

If you are in the US VOTE


I know there is good reason for cynicism.   I know there is a lot of corruption.  I know we little folk don't have a whole lot of power.  But I still believe my vote counts.  Call me naive.  Call me idealistic.
Women in this country were arrested, locked up in insane asylums, beat up, force fed and lost their children so that I can vote.  People of color in this country were terrorized, tortured and killed so that all people could vote.
 Women in other countries risk acid thrown into their faces in order to vote. When Blacks obtained the right to vote in South Africa they would walk miles to polling places and wait hours in order to vote.
Vote, if for no other reason than to honor the people who sacrificed so much for this precious right.

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Children Learn what they see

(I gotta vote "creepy")






Now I don't quite know why this creeps me out as much as it does - but this is an example of how children learn to worship.  I guess they don't have a video of a darling little cherub learning the Kyrie...but this is why children need to be in the pew not in the nursery or in "children's church"

Saturday, October 23, 2010

Carribean Black Bean and Pumpkin Soup

I found this recipe on the internet and made it tonight.  At first, I thought it tasted strange but the more I ate it, the more I liked it.  There are a lot of versions of this....

Here's the way I made it. 


1 onion, chopped coarsely
1 acorn squash peeled and chopped
1 Buttercup squash, peeled and chopped
1 granny smith apple, peeled and sliced
2 cloves garlic
1/2 jalapeno, sliced 

toss all the above ingredients with salt, pepper and a little butter and olive oil in a pan.  Roast at 375 for about an hour.   Puree the entire mixture together.  Put the puree in a pan and add the following ingredients

1 can coconut milk
2 Tb brown sugar
1 cup cooked black beans

Bring soup to boil, stirring and then reduce heat and cook about 3 minutes--then add

juice of 1/2  lime
chopped cilantro

Serve with a little cream drizzled on it.  I think I will make this again