Monday, February 21, 2011

"If I Had My Child to Raise All Over Again"

Always on the lookout for words of practical wisdom, I came across the following poem by author Diane Loomans:

If I had my child to raise all over again,
I'd build self-esteem first, and the house later.
I'd fingerpaint more, and point the finger less.
I would do less correcting and more connecting.
I'd take my eyes off my watch, and watch with my eyes.
I would care to know less and know to care more.
I'd take more hikes and fly more kites.
I'd stop playing serious, and seriously play.
I would run through more fields and gaze at more stars.
I'd do more hugging and less tugging.
I'd see the oak tree in the acorn more often.
I would be firm less often, and affirm much more.
I'd model less about the love of power,
And more about the power of love.

Retrieved from, February 21, 2011
 Used with permission

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

This Imperfect World

Here's a ray of wisdom that needs to be proclaimed from the housetops:

"Being human means to be imperfect, to be limited, and thus to change and travel on a perpetual journey. Mature spirituality gives us the ability to live joyfully in an imperfect world. This is important because an imperfect world is the only one we have. And if God does not love imperfect people, God has no one to love."
Day 255

Tuesday, February 1, 2011

On the Threshold of Transformation: Daily Meditations for Men

Loyola Press
380 pages

Something has gone terribly wrong when a Catholic parish with wise leadership, vibrant liturgies, consistently challenging homilies, and over sixty active lay ministries reports a weekly attendance of 20-25 percent of registered parishioners. 

In On the Threshold of Transformation, Franciscan Father Richard Rohr, founder of the Center for Action and Contemplation in Albuquerque, New Mexico, offers the clearest connect-the-dots reasons yet for our current Roman Catholic ennui: absence of a focused male spirituality and disinterest among church leaders for encouraging men to develop their unique inner lives. His solution? Churches must "validate, encourage, structure, and teach men an inner life." 

What is at stake if churches continue to stand on the sidelines and simply watch as disenfranchised men drift away? Rohr's high-alert warning is, "I'm not sure what the church's reason for continued existence might be."

For generations, traditional parish ministry has promoted a unisex spirituality, one designed even to meet women's needs better than men's. Connect the dots. Rohr has made it a central work of his ministry to identify men's particular spiritual needs. In his latest book, he draws a year-long roadmap of one-page meditations, challenges, and journaling prompts that free men to honor their distinctly male way of being with God. 

On Day 363, he offers a summary statement: "At the heart of male spirituality is the knowledge that we are imperfect, that we come to God not by doing it right, but ironically and wonderfully by doing it wrong!" In a grave assessment of parishes' failure to promote male spirituality, he says, "More transformation is taking place . . . with things like twelve-step meetings, than in Sunday morning sanctuaries."  

On the Threshold of Transformation is a book that needs to be in the hands of every Catholic priest and every adult male parishioner--now. We can only hope it is not too late.
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