Saturday, September 05, 2009

The conservatives aren't going to compromise with you, WTF should we?

Obama Asks Liberals How Much They'll Budge On Public Option
--Headline at TPM

I can only speak for myself.

Mr. President, not one damned inch.

There, that was easy. Simple answers to simple questions.

--the BB

It's a cooking day - updated with photos

Hardly an event for those who cook every day, especially those who feed families on a daily basis. For someone too lazy to cook for himself, it becomes an occasion. Nothing new today. I am making mom's potato salad (described here) and will barbecue ribs (see here). I will have a platter of cantaloupe, raspberries, and blueberries. Diane is bringing appetizers and Bill is bringing dessert and, I hope, a tomato and basil tart. It is a 1987 Best of Gourmet recipe and you may find it here. We are talking another once-a-year treat. Bill suggested it and I begged him to do it. One of my favorite foods.

OK, back to it.

UPDATE: Oink. What a wonderful evening. Kathy came early with ice (I have never hooked the water up to my refrigerator) and we chatted. I played the Kiri Te Kanawa video at almost full volume for her. Then the rest of the crowd arrived. There were garden tours under the gray cloudy sky. We had grapes from my yard - small and turning to raisins on the vine but sweet. The tomato and basil tart was awesome. My BBQ was too hot so the meat was tasty but not as moist as I had hoped. Still delish, nonetheless. Dessert was a reine de Saba cake and Kathy blew out all the candles. Lots of interesting discussions and laughter. We all need the laughter. My heart is very full.

Potato salad in need of a good stir

Tomato and basil tart - zuke from my yard

The Gang of Four
James, Kathy, Diane, Bill

I love these people.

--the BB

Celebration is in order!

Twenty-eight years ago Margaret and Joel were married. What a blessing they are to us! May God shower continued blessings on them as they continue to journey together.

You may share the joy at her blog.

--the BB

Friday, September 04, 2009

Heart thread- 09/05/2009

One of the great intercessors, our David@Montreal, asks us to join in holding these before God.
dear beloved Giants of Prayer and Practice

your loving thoughts and prayers are asked for

our dear Elizabeth's brother John- who John, with great grace is struggling to live with dignity and grace the effects of a voracious alzheimer diagnosis

my cousin Frank: though the doctors are encouraged with the progress of his gene therapy ( slow but definately progressive with only a 9/10 match) he has spent most of the time since my last prayer call in hospital, fighting c-difficile, and now c-difficile and pneumonia. Mam spoke with Frank and Carol yesterday, their spirits are good but they definately need your love and prayers

Rose, staggering under the sudden, unexpected death of her idntical twin (Rose is the backbone of the St. Patrick's Society here, and a former work colleague)

Ron for whole man healing, for Rachel his spouse living the reality of M.S, and for our beloved A.P.B. & B.F

dear Dorian, living the reality of MS with such spunk and courage, for her mother, our dear friend Huguette

Louyse, Barbi, Sandra, D.W. for discernment

healing for Jonathan ( the elder) a man of extraordinary grace; grace & insight for his doctors as they have yet to discover what's really going on

Jonathan (Jr) for whole man healing; body & soul

healing of body, spirit and mind for Rose-Ann

our dear Sister E. and the folks at St. John's as the pray and practice to know God's will for their way forward

Merline, Susan, Shu-Tan, John, Lori, William, Eleanor, Imelda, Anne-Chantal, Jane, Anne-Marie, Thiery struggling with the hard reality of unemployment, and for all those left homeless,unemployed and underemployed by this current hard economic reality

Marley for healing

Jane & John for healing into Life

and two things, much on my heart these days: for the women of Islam who, with the grace of the Holy Spirit will be the salvation of Islam- leading it out of feudal misogeny; and for our beloved Communion- even if it only continues to effectively function in the mind of the Holy Spirit, that She will indeed have Her way with us- only and all to God's Greater Glory

and for you my beloved Giants, for your needs and intentions, for those near and dear to you, for those you know in need.


Let us also remember David, who asks for others and not for himself.

Friend Robin shares on FB:
Tough week or so, my son's grandmother and my former mother-in-law who was a wonderful mom to me is so very ill and not expected to live for more than a few months. We had some great conversations about how she and I fell in love with "our" baby - her first grandchild and my first baby!
Friend Richard "is contemplating a new path."

Friend Barbara shares with us Article 25 of The United Nations Universal Declaration of Human Rights:
(1) Everyone has the right to a standard of living adequate for the health and well-being of himself and of his family, including food, clothing, housing and medical care and necessary social services, and the right to security in the event of unemployment, sickness, disability, widowhood, old age or other lack of livelihood in circumstances beyond his control.

She adds: "Anyway, that's where I'm coming from. Health care as a basic inalienable human right...."

The indomitable Roseann informs us:
I'm going to go to church Sunday. My friend Kim is meeting me in the Narthex at 10:15 and she promised she would stop people from trying to hug me. Don't get me wrong, I love hugs, it is just that I'm a little fragile right now and bruise easily. I'm very excited to be going to church. Terri said she expected a rather low turnout being a holiday weekend but I wouldn't care if it was just me and Kim.

Razorback opening game is tomorrow. Go Hogs!
On FB she just posted: "Hotcakes and a great cup of coffee. " Continued prayers for her and Gary.

For Kirstin, still working her way back to the new normal.

For Fran and her courage and compassion in the new blog, There Will Be Bread.

I look on with horror and offer this to Godde:
West Bank settlement growth looks likely
Los Angeles Times - Richard Boudreaux - ‎10 hours ago‎
A decision by Israel's Netanyahu to build hundreds of new homes prompts a US expression of 'regret.' Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu will reportedly approve hundreds of new housing units in West Bank settlements before slowing settlement construction ...
Israël voudrait relancer la colonisation en Cisjordanie avant d ...
Le Monde - ‎Il y a 2 heures‎
En langage diplomatique, lorsque l'administration américaine dit "regretter" une initiative de l'un de ses alliés, cela équivaut à une condamnation. Cette réaction de la Maison Blanche, vendredi 4 septembre, faisait suite à des informations de ...
Sarkozy et Abbas dénoncent la colonisation israélienne Le Figaro
L'UE critique la poursuite de la colonisation israélienne en ...
For firefighters and those in danger:
Fire starter's intent is the key to possible murder charge
Los Angeles Times - Carol J. Williams, Richard Winton - ‎10 hours ago‎
If the Station blaze was started on purpose, authorities say, the arsonist could be given the death penalty. Firefighters salute as the procession for Ted Hall, killed in the Station fire, passes on the 210 Freeway.
For the unemployed in all nations:
US jobless rate soars to 26-year high of 9.7%
Detroit Free Press - Christopher S. Rugaber - ‎7 hours ago‎
AP The national unemployment rate jumped to 9.7% in August, the highest since 1983, reflecting a poor job market that will make it hard for the economy to begin a sustained recovery.
For peace throughout the Middle East and Central Asia:
Iraq sends extra police to Syrian border
CNN International - ‎4 hours ago‎
BAGHDAD, Iraq (CNN) -- Iraqi authorities have sent additional national police brigades to the border with Syria amid heightened tensions between the two ...
For peaceful progress and the well-being of all peoples:
Ahmadinejad y Chávez quieren apoyar a las "naciones revolucionarias"
AFP - ‎hace 46 minutos‎
TEHERAN — El presidente iraní Mahmud Ahmadinejad y su homólogo venezolano Hugo Chávez, principal aliado de Teherán en América Latina, se comprometieron el sábado a apoyar a las "naciones revolucionarias" y los "frente antiimperialistas", ...
For those imperiled by tropical storms:
Miles de damnificados por las lluvias en Sonora
El Diario de Yucatán - ‎hace 1 hora‎
Las históricas lluvias ocasionadas por “Jimena” en Sonora dejaron en los municipios de Guaymas y Empalme 193000 afectados y 72500 damnificados, de acuerdo con reportes de los ayuntamientos. Las autoridades no descartan que las cifras aumenten, ...
Jimena deja 2 muertos y más de 200 mil damnificados en Sonora La Jornada (México)
Otros 72 mil damnificados deja “Jimena” en Sonora El Universal (México)
For a restoration of peace in Gabon:
La France se veut neutre au Gabon, minimise les violences
L'Express - ‎Il y a 14 minutes‎
STOCKHOLM - La France rapelle qu'elle conservera une position de neutralité entre opposants politiques au Gabon après l'annonce de la victoire contestée d'Ali Bongo à l'élection présidentielle. Paris a par ailleurs minimisé les violences qui ont visé ...
Au Gabon, l'opposition, divisée et sans voix, semble en plein désarroi Le Monde
Gabon: Total confirme avoir évacué ses employés de Port-Gentil
New clashes rock Gabon city
AFP - ‎4 hours ago‎
PORT-GENTIL, Gabon - French oil giant Total pulled its foreign staff out of Gabon's second city Saturday as security forces clashed anew with protesters opposed to the election of Ali Bongo as president.
For the Earth:
Urgent: Improved climate talks
Jakarta Post - ‎7 hours ago‎
The US position is that all countries should be put on an equal footing. Going into the negotiations, developing countries have pledged to take mitigation measures, but will do this on their own, and they have agreed to submit so-called nationally ...
Youth across Canada plan for united front at international climate ... The Canadian Press
Current economic growth model is 'immoral', says Prescott
For those who travel far above the planet:
Sights, Smells Shock Rookie Discovery Astronauts
FOXNews - ‎1 hour ago‎
For rookie astronauts flying aboard the International Space Station, the food is good, the rocket thrusters are loud and there's an odd tang in the air - apparently from outer space.
Astronauts relish space's international food court The Associated Press
Astronauts give the lowdown on life in space Houston Chronicle
And for those who travel on a holiday weekend, the last outing before the fall in US culture.

For those killed, injured, or endangered by earthquakes:
More Indonesian quakes tipped
The Australian - Stephen Fitzpatrick - ‎Sep 4, 2009‎
LANDSLIDES like the one that killed at least 57 Indonesians in Wednesday's Indian Ocean earthquake are likely to be repeated across the archipelago as the annual wet season builds.
Team struggling to locate more quake victims Jakarta Post
Indonesia: Quake Toll Rises to 64 New York Times
Might we have cooperation without war games?
China war games 'necessary'
ABC Online - ‎Sep 3, 2009‎
Australian strategists are considering trilateral war games with China and the US. (Department of Defence) Australian Strategic Policy Institute analyst Dr Andrew Davies says it is a good idea for Australia and the United States to conduct trilateral ...
US and Australia look to closer military links with China Radio Australia
Military exercises with Australia, US still on table Sydney Morning Herald

As you can see, Google has restored links to its international news editions (finally!).

O heavenly Father, who hast filled the world with beauty: Open our eyes to behold thy gracious hand in all thy works; that, rejoicing in thy whole creation, we may learn to serve thee with gladness; for the sake of him through whom all things were made, thy Son Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

--the BB

Well, since you asked, the answer is YES!

Can you believe that David Broder, the dean of DC twitdom, actually asks the following question?
Ultimately, do we want to see Cheney, who backed these actions and still does, standing in the dock?
I believe the answer to Broder's question is:

Broder is so out of touch - with the times, with the American People, and with reality.

Here is the whole paragraph.
Looming beyond the publicized cases of these relatively low-level operatives is the fundamental accountability question: What about those who approved of their actions? If accountability is the standard, then it should apply to the policymakers and not just to the underlings. Ultimately, do we want to see Cheney, who backed these actions and still does, standing in the dock?
As for his penultimate sentence here - "If accountability is the standard, then it should apply to the policymakers and not just to the underlings." - I say, "hear, hear!" It SHOULD apply to the policymakers, the principal architect being Dick Cheney. Broder should have stopped there before typing what he - mistakenly - considers a rhetorical question.

Broder boasts precisely where he should be slinking off in shame.
When President Ford pardoned Nixon in 1974, I wrote one of the few columns endorsing his decision, which was made on the basis that it was more important for America to focus on the task of changing the way it would be governed and addressing the current problems. It took a full generation for the decision to be recognized by the John F. Kennedy Library Foundation and others as the act of courage that it had been.
Courage, schmourage, it was one of the greatest mistakes in modern American democracy because it undercut accountability and laid the groundwork for the lawlessness of the GWB gang of thugs. By shifting the focus to "addressing the current problems," the pardoning of Nixon left us vulnerable for the same issues to bite us in the ass, as they have done and are doing. The entire nexus of Bush Administration wrongdoing is integrally related to Dick Cheney's smoldering resentment of any restrictions on an imperial presidency and his determination to restore presidential power to the Nixon days and take it even further. Obama is not moving fast enough to reverse engines on this by any means. I believe many of us despair that he will reverse it and language about "moving forward" is just a means to keep us from dealing with the political cancer we are afraid or unwilling to face and, untreated, may well kill us.

The "high broderism" in the Thursday article stinks so bad it could knock a fly off a shit wagon. Broder thinks Attorney General Holder is wrong. I think Broder is wrong. Again. As usual. I find it amazing that he is still not only published but revered in the Beltway. But the Village looks after its inbred own. Their cocktail circuit mentality is all that exists and all that matters.

--the BB

In case you have never heard of "high broderism" here is an April 2007 post by Atrios:
We normally think of "High Broderism" as the worship of bipartisanship for its own sake, combined with a fake "pox on both their houses" attitude. But in reality this is just the cover Broder uses for his real agenda, the defense of what he perceives to be "the establishment" at all costs. The establishment is the permanent ruling class of Washington, our betters who know better. It is their rough agenda which is sold as "centrism" even when it has no actual relationship with the political center in a meaningful way. Democracy's messy, in Broder's world, and passionate voters are problematic. It is up to the Wise Old Men of Washington to implement the agenda, and the job of the voters to bless them for it. When the establishment fails, the most important issue is not their failure, but that the voters might begin to lose faith in and deference for their betters. Thus, people must always be allowed to save face, no matter what their transgressions, as long as they're a part of his permanent floating tea party.

While this basic attitude isn't unique to Broder, his apparent lack of interest in the actual details of policy makes him a more absurd figure than some. For him it's not about results, but about the right people being in the right places. It is terribly elitist in all the wrong ways. Arguments can be made for certain types of elitism - you do want a brain surgeon conducting brain surgery - but Broder's elites are simply aristocrats. It's their town.

Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals speaks


All seizures of criminal suspects require probable cause of criminal activity. To use a material witness statute pretextually, in order to investigate or preemptively detain suspects without probable cause, is to violate the Fourth Amendment.



Almost two and a half centuries ago, William Blackstone, considered by many to be the preeminent pre-Revolutionary War authority on the common law, wrote:

To bereave a man of life, or by violence to confiscate his estate, without accusation or trial, would be so gross and notorious an act of despotism, as must at once convey the alarm of tyranny throughout the whole kingdom. But confinement of the person, by secretly hurrying him to gaol, where his sufferings are unknown or forgotten; is a less public, a less striking, and therefore a more dangerous engine of arbitrary government.


The Fourth Amendment was written and ratified, in part, to deny the government of our then-new nation such an engine of potential tyranny. And yet, if the facts alleged in al-Kidd’s complaint are actually true, the government has recently exercised such a “dangerous engine of arbitrary government” against a significant number of its citizens, and given good reason for disfavored minorities (whoever they may be from time to time) to fear the application of such arbitrary power to them.

We are confident that, in light of the experience of the American colonists with the abuses of the British Crown, the Framers of our Constitution would have disapproved of the arrest, detention, and harsh confinement of a United States citizen as a “material witness” under the ircumstances, and for the immediate purpose alleged, in al-Kidd’s complaint. Sadly, however, even now, more than 217 years after the ratification of the Fourth Amendment to the Constitution, some confidently assert that the government has the power to arrest and detain or restrict American citizens for months on end, in sometimes primitive conditions, not because there is evidence
that they have committed a crime, but merely because the government wishes to investigate them for possible wrongdoing, or to prevent them from having contact with others in the outside world. We find this to be repugnant to the Constitution, and a painful reminder of some of the most ignominious chapters of our national history.
I commend these portions of the decision to your attention. The author of this decision is a George W. Bush appointee confirmed in 2006. As Jay Elias, who brought this to my attention at Daily Kos, comments:
This is what honest evaluation of the legality of the methods of the Bush administration looks like.

The problem with this approach

The above is a photo I took while waiting, vainly, in line for Martin Heinrich's town hall meeting on August 22 here in Albuquerque.

CBS Poll (released September 1):
Support for the so-called “public option” -- a government-administered health insurance plan – still finds majority support, though that support has been steadily dropping since June. In this poll, 60% favor it, with 34% opposed.

CNN Poll (released August 31):
Now thinking specifically about the health insurance plans available to most Americans, would you favor or oppose creating a public health insurance option administered by the federal government that would compete with plans offered by private health insurance companies?
Favor = 55%; Oppose = 41%; No opinion = 4%.

Kaiser Poll (released August 11):
Creating a government-administered public health insurance option similar to Medicare to compete with private health insurance plans
Favor = 59%; Oppose = 38%; Don't know = 3%.
[Breakdown: Strongly favor = 25%, Somewhat favor = 33%, Somewhat oppose = 16%, Strongly oppose = 22%, Don't know = 3%.]

In sum, even as opinions shift, the majority of Americans still favor a public option.

This support erodes under an onslaught of misinformation and fearmongering, so our work is cut out for us. I still hope the politicians DO listen to the people.

h/t to Greg Sargent at The Plum Line who notes that the White House is citing these polls BUT OMITTING MENTION OF THE PUBLIC SUPPORT OF A PUBLIC OPTION.

h/t to emptywheel who started me on this line of thought with her post "Obama Doesn't Want You To Know He Knows Public Option Is Popular."
--the BB

For John and all his family

At Telling Secrets Elizabeth Kaeton writes concerning her brother John with early onset Alzheimer's:
I covet and cherish your prayers for my brother. Go ahead. Put that request on your prayer lists. I haven't wanted to be a bother but now I'm thinking it's time to 'storm heaven' on his behalf.

John. His name is John. He's 56 years old - just turned in July.

Pray for a miracle - without condition or specifics. I don't know what God has in mind in all of this, but I do know that when things get this bad this fast there's usually a miracle just around the corner which often doesn't have as much, if anything, to do with a 'cure' or 'healing' of that which gave rise to the prayer in the first place.

It's about "something else" that needs curing or healing, by which the party of the first part finds hope and strength and solace, through which the parties of the second, third and fourth parts play a significant role - which changes and transforms everyone and everything.

I know that sounds confusing, but I'm actually crystal clear in my head and heart.

I don't know how any of this works. I only know that it does.
There is more at her post, including a poem.

Let us pray.

--the BB


Lowest divorce rate in the nation? Massachusetts. In fact, it got lower (back to the pre-WWII level) SINCE gay marriage was legalized there.

h/t to Susan Russell

--the BB

Belated items

Yesterday was the natal festivity of my dear friend Kathy. Here she is at Sandia Peak with the eastern hills behind her. I have shared some of her e-mail comments here though she does not comment here directly. She still swings by daily. Kathy is an awesome woman with an ever-exploring, ever-wondering mind and we are celebrating tomorrow evening.

Happy Birthday, Kathy!

Saint Aidan, Chapel, Holy Cross Monastery, West Park NY
Photo by Randy, OHC - via Wikimedia Commons
h/t to Sister Ellie

Monday, 31 August, was the Feast of Saint Aidan of Lindisfarne, the missionary from Iona who founded the Lindisfarne community and evangelized Northumbria. He raised up a generation of saints that followed. St Cuthbert's call to the monastic life was triggered by Aidan's death. Aidan walked the lanes and did not live in fear or pomp, staying in contact with the people he encountered. King Oswald sometimes acted as his interpreter so Saxons could understand what the Irish-speaking Aidan was saying.

I apologize to Aidan for not mentioning his feast on the day.
O loving God, you called your servant Aidan from the peace of a cloister to re-establish the Christian mission in northern England, and endowed him with gentleness, simplicity, and strength: Grant that we, following his example, may use what you have given us for the relief of human need, and may persevere in commending the saving Gospel of our Redeemer Jesus Christ; who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever. Amen.

Gregory the Great
(c) Paul E Strid

Yesterday, 3 September, was also the Feast of Saint Gregory the Great on the Roman Catholic calender. Episcopalians celebrate him on March 12. He was my friend Bill's favorite saint and we agreed to skip the various Saints William and celebrate Gregory as Bill's saint's day. So, Happy Saint's Day, Bill! We will be celebrating that tomorrow evening along with Kathy's birthday.

Almighty and merciful God, you raised up Gregory of Rome to be a servant of the servants of God, and inspired him to send missionaries to preach the Gospel to the English people: Preserve in your Church the catholic and apostolic faith they taught, that your people, being fruitful in every good work, may receive the crown of glory that never fades away; through Jesus Christ our Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever. Amen.

--the BB

Heart thread - 09/04/2009

Let us pray for firefighters and those endangered by or homeless from wildfires.
Firefighters gaining on Los Angeles-area wildfire
The Associated Press - Raquel Maria Dillon - ‎1 hour ago‎
LOS ANGELES - Fire bosses say they are making progress in taming the 226-square-mile arson fire north of Los Angeles that has led to a homicide investigation into the deaths of two firefighters.
Los Angeles Wildfire Sends Pollution 1000 Miles East to Denver Bloomberg

The extended family continues to grow. My niece Paula notes the following on FB:
Have a new niece born this morning to my brother's son BJ and his wife Tracey. Haven't heard the full name yet, but her middle name will be Hallie after my maternal grandmother who shared the same birthday as BJ. She weighed in at 8 pounds 1 oz. This has been a great week...twin nephews born one week ago and today a niece. Just too cool. :-)


Add to that Nicole's new nephew -- who by the way is another cutie patootie, and that makes 4 babies in a week. Crazy...
So another grandnephew of mine, BJ, has become a dad too. And my grandnephew Nate is a new uncle. Joy in seeing a whole new generation arrive. And mortality too as I realize my generation, that of the great-grandparents, is not getting younger.

My cousin Maureen pointed out that her niece, cousin Dan's daughter Jennifer Hallie, also has that middle name after my mom. My own niece Paula and nephew Glen Paul and I all are named for my dad, Paul Victor (my middle name is different). Mother, in turn, was named for her Aunt Hallie, who was also named for her Aunt Hallie in the generation before that.

It is nice to see family names carried on, though a colleague who has "IV" behind his name implies it can go too far. LOL.

Welcome to the next generation!

O God, you have taught us through your blessed Son that whoever receives a little child in the name of Christ receives Christ himself: We give you thanks for the blessing you have bestowed upon this family in giving them a child. Confirm their joy by a lively sense of your presence with them, and give them calm strength and patient wisdom as they seek to bring this child to love all that is true and noble, just and pure, lovable and gracious, excellent and admirable, following the example of our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ. Amen.

Let us pray for the unemployed.
Unemployment Rises to 9.7 Percent; 216000 Jobs Lost in August
Washington Post - Neil Irwin - ‎17 minutes ago‎
The job market continued its long, steep decline in August, with the jobless rate soaring to 9.7 percent and employers continuing to shed jobs, albeit at a slower rate than expected.
For a cessation of war.
Report of civilian deaths after NATO airstrikes kill 90 in Afghanistan
Los Angeles Times - ‎37 minutes ago‎
KABUL, Afghanistan - NATO airstrikes on a pair of hijacked fuel tankers killed up to 90 people early today, according to Afghan authorities.
For a very soon return of sanity to this nation.
Obama's speech scares the wingnut parents
Kansas City Star - Yael T. Abouhalkah - ‎53 minutes ago‎
It's Day 3 of the whipped up frenzy over President Barack Obama's planned stay-in-school message to K-12 students. Conservative parents are whipping up on their schools boards -- in the ...

I checked a NYT article when GHWB gave a speech to students in 1989 and the synopsis of a news broadcast on it. While there seems to have been concern in some quarters about GHWB's approach to drugs (his topic) and a drug raid timed to bolster his speech, there was no hysteria or calls to pull children out of school, etc. Senator Byrd said Bush's drug proposal did not go far enough. Democrats in Congress accused Bush 41 of using government money for political purposes. Students were rather unimpressed with the "just say no" content of the President's speech. A commenter at one site vaguely remembers it.
I was only 10 at the time, and we had just started 5th grade.
But I remember all of us gathering in the cafeteria (it was a small Catholic elementary school - maybe 120 kids total in grades K - 6) and watching this on the TV.
But shielding students from what he had to say? No. When it comes to the reaction there is no qualitative equivalency so don't let someone pass off the current frenzy as the same-o same-o. False equivalencies must be rejected; they do not stand up to scrutiny.

Has the entire nation gone off its meds against medical advice?

One of my friends writes at FB:
Erik ... thinks ALL media needs to look at what they are doing and STOP flaming the fires of hate, discrimination, controversy and stupidity. REPORT the facts... STOP SENSATIONALIZING!
I thank those praying for me as I go through dental work. I was all brave and calm yesterday but last night I lost several hours of sleep because of pain. Today I will accept the doc's offer of stronger analgesics (the ones I turned down yesterday). I will be going in to work later, assuming I can talk without such an intense distraction since we are short-staffed today.

Let us remember all who are ill and those who do research to combat disease and suffering.
H1N1 has killed 2837, virus has not mutated-WHO
Reuters - Stephanie Nebehay, Laura MacInnis - ‎1 hour ago‎
GENEVA, Sept 4 (Reuters) - H1N1 flu has killed at least 2837 people but is not causing more severe illness than previously and the virus has not mutated, the World Health Organisation (WHO) said on Friday.

Antibodies found that prevent HIV from causing severe AIDS
Los Angeles Times - Thomas H. Maugh II - ‎13 hours ago‎
Scientists were able to isolate two antibodies responsible for resistance to the disease in an African patient. The discovery could be key to the development of a vaccine.
LJ notes at FB:
According to the New York Times, the lack of medical insurance coverage in the US is the direct cause of 18,000 unnecessary deaths a year. That’s more than five times the number of people killed on 9/11. Each year.
From the Prayer List at OCICBW:

It's Bad Alice again. The hospital discharge nurse called me about my brother and SIL and told me they have to release them into someone's care because they aren't competent to take care of themselves. My SIL possibly has the beginnings of dementia. Neither has been taking their medications properly or eating properly. This has probably been going on for a while, hidden by the fact that on the surface they seem okay. I will be sitting down with doctors today to learn more about their actual diagnoses, and eventually with a case worker from their insurance company and a social worker. It's probable that she will need some sort of assisted living. I'm not looking forward to trying to explain any of this to my brother or SIL.

In other words, it's a mess and I feel like sitting down and crying.

+ + +
Last night I also ended up in hospital myself after I passed out with pain on the landing. It’s probably either the endometriosis again or a cyst bursting but my blood pressure went through the basement and I was unable to move or talk for some time. I’m ok again now and aiming to be back at work tomorrow but why oh why do these things always come at the same time???
+ + +
Posted by Charlotte at THEATRICAL MILESTONES:

... one of my best friends--let's call him Randy--is involved in an abusive relationship with a junkie. ...

+ + +
Posted by THE EPISCOPAL PRINCESS on her blog:

... I am finding it so hard to put into words all the things which are blowing about in my brain right now. In no particular order... anxiety, fear, sadness, excitement. Okay so all of those are pieces of anxiety. I cannot put them in order because quite frankly the order changes from minute to minute. I keep remembering the song my mother used to sing when we were being particularly difficult "They're Coming to Take Me Away, Ha, Ha". It feels so appropriate right now.

I am scared of change, it is one of my huge challenges and not one that I relish.
+ + +

Margaret notes Bishop Paul Jones in the TEC calendar today:
Today I give thanks for +Paul Jones (1880-1941), young priest, younger bishop, who spoke peace and non-violence in the early days of WWI. He was forced to resign as bishop because of the conflict he caused preaching peace.

Take heart you bishops that are fearful to act or speak plainly, or believe you are working a "process."

Today is also the feast of the Translation of Saint Cuthbert of Lindisfarne. On this day in 1104 his relics were moved to their new shrine in Durham Cathedral. The icon shown below, through the hands of this unworthy presbyter, was laid on Cuthbert's grave in the cathedral in summer of 1997 as I prayed for everyone and everything I could imagine. St Cuddy is one of the saints famous for healing. May his prayers for this hurting world continue.

A Lindisfarne Litany

Most High and Glorious,
Lowly and Generous,
Sweet God,
Strong and Swift to Save,

By your joy in making all things,
By your passion in saving all things,
By your grace in keeping all things,

Hear the prayers of your servant,
Give ear to the prayers of your friends,
Hearken to the voice of those who love you,
And show mercy to those who know not your love;

Fashion anew your Image in us,
Keep us by your tender love,
Save us and guide us safely home;

For your own sake, Who pity mortal flesh,
For your own dear sake, Who took our mortal flesh,
For your mercy's sake, Who are the Life of mortal flesh,

Holy and Glorious, Gracious Three,
Save us and guide us safely home,
Save us and guide us safely home.

--the BB

Thursday, September 03, 2009

So, about that scary Canadian health care system....

ht to Maha

--the BB

I signed. I donated.

Remember this?

Well, let's stand up and prove that YES WE CAN!

Are you listening, Mr. President?

Here is where you can join in by signing.

--the BB

Some of the folks in Congress have spines

Letter to the President of the United States from the House Progressive Caucus:
We look forward to meeting with you regarding retaining a robust public option in any final health reform bill and request that that meeting take place as soon as possible.

Public opinion polls continue to show that a majority of Americans want the choice of a robust public plan and we stand in solidarity with them. We continue to support the robust public option that was reported out of the Committees on Ways and Means and Education and Labor and will not vote for a weakened bill on the House Floor or returning from a Conference with the Senate.

Any bill that does not provide, at a minimum, a public option built on the Medicare provider system and with reimbursement based on Medicare rates--not negotiated rates--is unacceptable. A plan with negotiated rates would ensure higher costs for the public plan, and would do nothing to achieve the goal of providing choice and competition to keep rates down. The public plan with set rates saves $75 billion, which could be lost if rates are negotiated with providers. Further, this public option must be available immediately and must not be contingent upon any trigger.

Mr. President, the need for reform is urgent. Every day, 14,000 Americans lose their health care coverage. We must have health care reform that will effectively bring down costs and significantly expand access. A health reform bill without a robust public option will not achieve the health reform this country so desperately needs. We cannot vote for anything less.

Speaker Pelosi has also said this:
"A bill without a strong public option will not pass the House. Eliminating the public option would be a major victory for the insurance companies who have rationed care, increased premiums and denied coverage."
I would love to see more folks standing up for the American People instead of the insurance companies.

--the BB

OMFG! - updated

UPDATE: You can read about this at the NYT today.

You have, perhaps, heard or read about the brouhaha over the President speaking to the students of the United States about being good students.

If the asshats freaking out about this (and the evil bastards playing it up and propagating it) are true Americans, strip me of my citizenship now. I don't want to be associated with this level of stupidity.

But they are just fucking stupid. And the furor is phony and just plain evil. Got that?

It just boggles the mind that we have sunk so far.

The media in this nation have given themselves over to the reptilian hindbrain that has risen to the fore now that we have a - tell it not in Gath - black President!

From the Rude Pundit:
Some abusive parents have decided that their blind ideology is more important than exposing their children to ideas not approved by Rush Limbaugh and are actually preventing them from watching the speech. Because why? They're afraid Obama will seem like a nice guy when he doesn't have a Hitler mustache?

Oh, sweet, stupid motherfuckers who shouldn't have been allowed to breed, like it or not, when someone is the President, that person is the President of all of us. So, sorry, conservatives madly craning your necks to lick your own taints over Obama's speech, he's your President, too. The only way he's not your President is if you leave the country. On the left, we lived with that knowledge for 8 years. You're not even up to ten months. A little advice here: let this one go.

For the past eight years I got apoplectic every time I heard W's voice. I acknowledge that I hate him with the passion of a thousand white-hot suns, which is tame compared to how I feel about Dick Cheney. All right, cards on the table.

But I attacked him verbally for what he was doing or for the lies he told, not for made-up shit. I screamed at the television or radio but I never protested his prerogative to address the nation.

For that matter, the world did not get very exercised when G. H. W. Bush (Poppy or Bush '41) addressed the school children of the nation to push his style of assault on drugs. It seems however that the world has gone bat shit crazy.

I would like to take a cue from the Rude One's rant:
If you don't like your children hearing from the President of the United States just fucking leave the country now. And do us a favor. Don't come back.

--the BB

Sealing all the entries

From +++JN1034 (in a comment thread):
As I've told my students for decades (most forget, many choose not to remember):

To deny our common heritage and witness as Christians is to refuse attempts at visible unity, thereby propagating the great heresy that the Holy Eucharist - that is God's own being - is an exclusive privilege of a few, and that the Holy Spirit is limited to even less. What value has Baptism and Chrismation to the ones claiming Paradise while sealing all entries?
Господу помориця:
Most Holy and Lifegiving Trinity, in whom we live and move and have our being, in your infinite compassion look upon your warring children and touch our hearts that the doors thereof may open and that we may behold one another through your merciful eyes. Suffer us not to turn from one another but grant that turning our faces toward each other we may turn them unto you, whose Light illumines all who come into this world. To you be glory now and forever and unto the ages of ages. Amen.

--the BB

Bearsy's got an owie

It seems tooth #19 (a lower left molar) had an abscess. So I began my day with a root canal. I had a root canal done there two years ago and I'm not thrilled with going through this again. Must say, I love the Zen setting of the endodontist's office and the softly played baroque music in the background. Almost no pain in the process. Tonight, however, I am grateful for Tylenol with codeine and am about to take another one.

Next week: the final filling for today's work and tackling cavities and a new crown.


--the BB

Wednesday, September 02, 2009

Women in Iran

If you are interested in learning about the role played by women in contemporary Iranian political culture, check out the guest post by Nayereh Tohidi at Informed Comment.

One paragraph:
The international media, often unaware of the brewing women’s movement in Iran, were surprised to see women marching in the demonstrations in large numbers and braving the violent response by security forces, which dramatically illustrated the clash between a changing society and an increasingly repressive government. But the massive participation of women in the latest protests is not an unprecedented, overnight development. This has been the result of many years of rather quiet educational and organizational work carried out by many small groups of women and men focused on civil rights, especially women’s rights. Women’s social activism and participation in political movements in modern Iran has more than 100 years of recorded history, with special highlights during the Constitutional Revolution of 1906–1911, the nationalist movement of the 1950s, the modernization and reform processes of the 1960s and 1970s, and the Islamic Revolution of 1978–79.

--the BB

Tarahiki (Cicada) - updated

Update: If you have a problem with the embed, click on the YouTube link below.

I ran across this today at Crooks and Liars. Too cool! nonny mouse posted it, and I thank you. thecelticinme poasted it at YouTube, and I thank you.

Nonny tells us it is "an old Maori haka sung by New Zealand’s most famous soprano, Dame Kiri Te Kanawa, with a dozen Maori back-up vocalists." The song is evidently over 300 years old and is here performed in a blend of traditional haka and symphonic orchestra. It's just way cool.

The following is from the YouTube post:
Footage taken from "Faith and Music" with a little editing.


E, pakia kia rite
E, ko te rite kia rite
E, takahia kia ngawari
E, torona kei waho
Hoki mai

E whakarongo ai au
Ki te tangi mai
A te manu nei,

A te tarakihi,
I te weheruatanga
o te po

Tara ra-ta kita kita
Tara ra-ta kita kita

Wiri o papa, towene, towene
Wiri o papa, towene, towene

Hope whai-a-ke
Turi whatia
Ei! Ei! Ha!


Clap in unison,
in unison, in unison.
Stamp your feet smoothly
Hands outstretched
then back.

I listen
to the cry
of this flying creature

of the cicada
in the middle
of the night.

Tara ra ta ki ta ki ta
.... (cicada noises)

Quivering rear end, whirring, whirring
Quivering rear end, whirring, whirring

Knees bent
hips swaying
Ei! Ei! Ha !

--the BB

Chaos and War

K’s body lay limp across F’s arms. No sparks flew from her now, though flashes of sunlight reflected from the small silver coins sewn about the hem of her voluminous skirt, its great folds dark as the last blue before the night sky turns black. F. held her head close to his cheek as though he cradled his own child. The old woman was tall and large-boned but looked frail as a sparrow in the Norrung’s huge arms.

R. shivered as she remembered F’s brother carrying Ian down from Mount Rğan and reminded herself that Ian was ultimately all right. She hoped this was true of K.

Memories haunt and comfort us. The greatest warmaiden of the eastern forest has a flashback here on the battlefield, recalling the morning F's brother raced up the mountain, struggling against the scree, to bring the great hero down. He who saved the world from the darkness seemed lifeless. What she beheld this day was too evocative of that earlier struggle. Was every victory of the Light only momentary?

I just returned from church by way of the grocery store. A quick bite to eat and all too soon to bed. Tomorrow morning I see the endodontist at 8:00 to evaluate the tender tooth.

Ah, now there's a title for a short story: The Tender Tooth. Or perhaps a band? I am rapidly becoming silly. Time to close this post.

Sweet dreams, my altruistic alstroemerias!

--the BB

Twenty-six Lies About H.R. 3200

Twenty-six Lies About H.R. 3200
A notorious analysis of the House health care bill contains 48 claims. Twenty-six of them are false and the rest mostly misleading. Only four are true.

--the BB

Heart thread - 09/02/2009

Deadly earthquake hits Indonesia
BBC News - ‎49 minutes ago‎
At least seven people have been killed after a powerful earthquake struck near the Indonesian island of Java. Dozens of properties collapsed in the city of Tasikmalaya on the west of the island and thousands of people have been evacuated, ...

Suicide bomber kills 23 in east Afghanistan attack
Reuters - Rafiq Sherzad - ‎1 hour ago‎
MEHTAR LAM, Afghanistan (Reuters) - A suicide bomber killed at least 23 people, including the country's deputy head of intelligence, in an attack near a mosque in eastern Afghanistan on Wednesday, officials said.

Bomb hits Athens stock exchange
AFP - ‎37 minutes ago‎
ATHENS - A powerful van bomb caused major damage Wednesday to the Athens stock exchange and injured a woman in one of two attacks suspected to have been carried out by far-left militants.

Weather aids firefighters; Mt. Wilson still threatened
Los Angeles Times - ‎7 hours ago‎
Higher humidity and a bit lower temperatures help crews battling the Station fire in the Angeles National Forest. But the northern and southeastern fronts could re-erupt, officials said.

Tropical Storm Erika heads towards Leeward Islands
Reuters - ‎21 minutes ago‎
NEW YORK (Reuters) - Tropical Storm Erika, which formed late Tuesday in the western Atlantic Ocean, was headed toward the northern Leeward Islands early Wednesday, the US National Hurricane Center in its last advisory.

Job cuts ease in August - ‎34 minutes ago‎
Summer layoffs slow with 76456 jobs lost last month; 21% fewer than in July, according to outplacement firm report. By Jessica Dickler, CNNMoney.

Bishop warns of South Sudan war
BBC News - ‎3 hours ago‎
In a rare statement, the head of the Episcopal Church of Sudan warned that the 2005 peace deal was in "grave danger" unless more is done to prevent conflict ...

Contractors Outnumber US Troops in Afghanistan
New York Times - James Glanz - ‎10 hours ago‎
Notes from Afghanistan, Pakistan, Iraq and other areas of conflict in the post-9/11 era. Go to the Blog » On a superficial level, the shift means that most ...
US Death Toll at Record Low in Iraq, at Record High in Afghanistan
US to boost combat force in Afghanistan Los Angeles Times

Ga. police 'need help' after eight people slain - Terry Dickson - ‎Aug 31, 2009‎
BRUNSWICK, Ga. - Toni Mugavin says she wonders if she needs to sleep with a gun under her pillow, afraid the killer of eight people at a Georgia mobile home is still on the loose and frustrated with the lack of information about what ...

From Patrik Jonsson at The Christian Science Monitor (via Meteor Blades at Daily Kos):
For more hard-pressed Americans, a campsite is home

As cities from Sacramento, Calif., to Tampa, Fla., debate the merits of tent cities to house newly homeless people (many of them young families), this recession is starting to yield scenes that evoke the Great Depression, especially at places like Timberline Campground in Lebanon, Tenn.

Living in well-worn campers and tent compounds overstretched with 20-foot-long tarps, 85 percent of residents here are permanent, a good chunk of them "economic refugees." It’s an increasingly familiar scene across the country as campgrounds, RV parks, national parks, and city-owned pockets become inundated with permanent campers, and as entire tent cities spring up and expand, with some hinting at permanence by voting on village bylaws.

"It’s not quite Hoovervilles, but it’s getting there," says Leonard Heumann, a housing policy professor at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, referencing the massive tent cities and shantytowns erected during the Great Depression. ...

The National Alliance to Prevent Homelessness (NAPH) estimates that this recession will create 1.5 million new homeless – nearly double the current number. Half of those people will exist outside the shelter system – in cars, tents, campers, or sleeping bags under highway overpasses.

O God, you made us in your own image and redeemed us through Jesus your Son: Look with compassion on the whole human family; take away the arrogance and hatred which infect our hearts; break down the walls that separate us, unite us in bonds of love; and work through our struggle and confusion to accomplish your purposes on earth; that, in your good time, all nations and races may serve you in harmony around your heavenly throne; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

Tuesday, September 01, 2009

Good fracking question

The Gestapo did not use waterboarding - so their methods of interrogation in this case were not as extreme as Cheney's. Nonetheless, the US-run court ruled that Cheney-style EITs, deployed by the Gestapo with the same justification as Cheney, constituted prosecutable torture:

And they were executed for war crimes.

The question Americans have to ask themselves is why they hold the former president and vice-president to lower moral and ethical standards than the United States once held the Gestapo. That's all. And that's everything, isn't it?

--Andrew Sullivan at The Atlantic

h/t to Markos


--the BB

Sinead's hand

Well then, that puts it right out there, doesn't it?

h/t to Chris Bodenner at The Atlantic

--the BB

When you shatter my myth....

Patricia Williams at The Nation:
But for those whose sense of identity has been premised on a raced, masculinist, conservative Christian hierarchy of American power, the world must seem even more emotionally terrifying than any actual facts would indicate.
[Emphasis mine]

Boy, does that sum up a lot.

h/t to Maha

--the BB

Please, wash it off

Is Chris Wallace the journalistic equivalent of dried dog's vomit on the sidewalk? Inquiring minds want to know.

[You can witness journimalistic fellatio here and here if you must. And yes, the term "journimalism" has been around a while.]


09/01/09 :
DoD Identifies Marine Casualty
Lance Cpl. David R. Hall, 31, of Elyria, Ohio, died Aug. 31 while supporting combat operations in Helmand province, Afghanistan. He was assigned to 2nd Battalion, 8th Marine Regiment, 2nd Marine Division, II Marine Expeditionary Force, Camp Lejeune, N.C.

08/31/09 :
DoD Identifies Army Casualties (2 of 2)
Pfc. Eric W. Hario, 19, of Monroe, Mich...died Aug. 29 in Paktika province, Afghanistan, of wounds sustained when they were shot by enemy forces Aug. 28 while conducting combat operations. Both soldiers were assigned to the 1st Battalion

08/31/09 :
DoD Identifies Army Casualties (1 of 2)
Staff Sgt. Jason S. Dahlke, 29, of Orlando, Fla...died Aug. 29 in Paktika province, Afghanistan, of wounds sustained when they were shot by enemy forces Aug. 28 while conducting combat operations. Both soldiers were assigned to the 1st Battalion

08/31/09 :
DoD Identifies Army Casualty
Spc. Abraham S. Wheeler III, 22, of Columbia, S.C., died Aug. 28 in Logar province, Afghanistan, of wounds suffered when enemy forces attacked his vehicle with an improvised explosive device. He was assigned to the 3rd Squadron...

08/28/09 :
DoD Identifies Army Casualty
Pfc. Matthew E. Wildes, 18, of Hammond, La., died Aug. 27 in Afghanistan, of wounds suffered when enemy forces attacked his vehicle with an improvised explosive device. He was assigned to the 1st Battalion, 12th Infantry Regiment...

08/28/09 :
DoD Identifies Army Casualty
Staff Sgt. Kurt R. Curtiss, 27, of Murray, Utah, died Aug. 26 in Paktika Province, Afghanistan, of wounds suffered when he was shot while his unit was supporting Afghan security forces during an enemy attack. He was assigned to the 1st Battalion...

08/27/09 :
DoD Identifies Army Casualties (4 of 4)
Pfc. Dennis M. Williams, 24, of Federal Way, Wash...died Aug. 25 in southern Afghanistan, of wounds suffered when enemy forces attacked their vehicle with an improvised explosive device.

08/27/09 :
DoD Identifies Army Casualties (3 of 4)
Sgt. 1st Class Ronald W. Sawyer, 38, of Trenton, Mo...died Aug. 25 in southern Afghanistan, of wounds suffered when enemy forces attacked their vehicle with an improvised explosive device.

08/27/09 :
DoD Identifies Army Casualties (2 of 4)
Capt. Cory J. Jenkins, 30, of Arizona...died Aug. 25 in southern Afghanistan, of wounds suffered when enemy forces attacked their vehicle with an improvised explosive device.

08/27/09 :
DoD Identifies Army Casualties (1 of 4)
Capt. John L. Hallett III, 30, of California...died Aug. 25 in southern Afghanistan, of wounds suffered when enemy forces attacked their vehicle with an improvised explosive device.

08/27/09 :
DoD Identifies Marine Casualty
Lance Cpl. Donald J. Hogan, 20, of San Clemente, Calif., died Aug. 26 while supporting combat operations in Helmand province, Afghanistan. He was assigned to 1st Battalion, 5th Marine Regiment, 1st Marine Division, I Marine Expeditionary Force...


DoD Identifies Army Casualties
The Department of Defense announced today the death of two soldiers who were supporting Operation Iraqi Freedom. They died Aug. 28 in Rashid, Iraq, of wounds suffered when insurgents attacked their vehicle with an explosively formed penetrator. Both Soldiers were assigned to the 41st Special Troops Battalion, 41st Infantry Brigade Combat Team of the Oregon Army National Guard in Portland.
Killed were:

Sgt. Earl D. Werner, 38, of Mondovi, Wis.; and

Pvt. Taylor D. Marks, 19, of Monmouth, Ore.

DoD Identifies Army Casualty
2nd Lt. Joseph D. Fortin, 22, of St. Johnsbury, Vt., died Aug. 23 in Hussaniyah, Iraq, of wounds suffered when enemy forces attacked his vehicle with an improvised explosive device. He was assigned to 1st Squadron, 7th Cavalry Regiment, 4th Brigade Combat Team, 1st Cavalry Division, Fort Hood, Texas.

Father of all, we pray to you for all those whom we love but see no longer. Grant to them eternal rest. Let light perpetual shine upon them. May their souls and the souls of all the departed, through the mercy of God, rest in peace. Amen.

Monday, August 31, 2009

I gots a sore toof - updated

Going to the dentist tomorrow. A bit of sensitivity became an outright toothache yesterday, localized in one of my gold crowns. I didn't recall still having any nerves there but one loses track of root canals. Has not bothered me much today except when I chewed on my left side. I'm pretty brave about dentists, having had so many fillings as a child and braces from age 16 to 22. Nowadays damage comes mostly in the form of old fillings failing. To bed a bit early.

Today was just cleaning, x-rays, exam by dentist, fluoride coating, antibiotic shoved up my gums. Thursday I see the endodontist and next Wednesday the real dental work begins. It's tedious but necessary. I'll be fine but thanks for all who've prayed or sympathized. (The sore tooth, mercifully, is only at discomfort or very low level pain right now.)
--the BB

Senza parole

Keeping abreast

Juan Cole's post today is titled "Are the Taliban Surrounding NATO Armies and Cutting them Off? Why Washington Needs Iran and Russia."

I commend it to you for an update on Afghanistan-Pakistan-Iran-Iraq-Russia.

Informed Comment is a great source of current information on the Middle East and Southwest Asia.

--the BB

Sunday, August 30, 2009

A fond farewell to Vicar emerita the Rev. Sandra S. Bess

Today the Episcopal Mission of San Gabriel Árcangel in Corrales, New Mexico, celebrated the ministry of Mother Sandra, our founding vicar. We were joined by many members of St Michael and All Angels, Albuquerque, our mother parish, and friends from the Cathedral Church of St John, St Chad's, and St Thomas of Canterbury. It was a day of laughter and tears.

We send her forth with gratitude, hope, and deep affection. She signs her e-mails "Vaya con Dios" and we say the same to her as she moves into well-earned retirement. Blessings on her writing, her travels, and the as-yet-undiscovered ways in which she will continue to minister to others.

These photos are in reverse chronological order; I am too tired tonight to sort it all out.

Deacon Karly with a sunshine yellow balloon, the last photo I shot but nice symbol of the day's joy.

The new aumbry crafted by Bud Light and installed in time for this special day.

This is the congregation just after the dismissal. You can see that the place was packed.

Mother Rhonda McIntyre (our new vicar), Father Bryan Taylor (our rector), Deacon Karly Shepherd, with Cheri Winter, Steve Hayden, and Tad Pound assisting.

Fr Brian presenting a resolution from the Rector and Vestry of St Michael's.

Mother Rhonda presenting the awesome portrait of Mother Sandra that will hang in our fellowship area.

Mother Sandra with the certificate from the Standing Committee of the Diocese of the Rio Grande.

Diane Butler presenting the certificate (shown above) on behalf of the Standing Committee.

I would dearly love to know each word or event that provoked all these reactions. I was just snapping away.

Fr Brian, Mthr Sandra, Vicar's Warden Tad Pound. We are a church where laughter abounds.

Yes, I was there too. Shown here with Stephanie Padilla, one of the founding members.

Go in peace! Go in love! Go in joy! Go with God!

--the BB