Live As Though You Remember

It occurred to me this morning as I was researching my ‘manuscript in process’ that I have used the idea of “remembering” early in each of my historical novels. “I’ve been tempted to lose count of the years as each comes and goes, but I remember.  Remembering is important.” – The Olympian: A Tale of …

Around the World in Seven Years

woke up at 0400 … accomplished two of the four “S’s” … cleared my email and checked book sales, we’re already on the board for 2014 0500 … headed up to the Redemptorist Renewal Center at 0500 …. performed my daily devotion to Our Mother of Perpetual Help …. contemplated for 30 minutes in the …

The Christmas Story

It is my Christmas ritual to share this piece every year.  Maybe you can read it to a child… maybe you will just read it to yourself.  I hope you read it, enjoy it and find value in it … Most people — certainly those younger than 60 — may only know “Ben-Hur” as a …

The War Prayer

I may have mentioned I have been reading an excellent volume, The Rag and Bone Shop of the Heart: Poems for Men.  I come upon poem after poem that demands and commands my attention.  I so much like this book that I purchased four copies, one for each son and one for my son-in-law. Last …

Thanksgiving

Tomorrow is Thanksgiving Day, a day which was first declared a federal holiday in 1863 in the midst of the War Between the States by President Abraham Lincoln.  It pains me to think that 150 years later, it is more often referred to as the day before black Friday. The year has been a challenging …

When You’re Feeling Like George Bailey

“I had the blues ’cause I had no shoes until I met a man on the street who had no feet.”  When my kids were growing up, that is how I would teach them to respond to even their legitimate woes:  someone is always in a more dire strait.  Sometimes, however, a person gets the …

David Walsh McGrath, Smiling Hero for All Time

Just last week at Friday Mass, we read all about friends from the Book of Sirach [6:5 – 18].  “A faithful friend is a sturdy shelter; he who finds one finds a treasure.  A faithful friend is beyond price…..”  I have been blessed with many people I call ‘friend.’  The two funniest men I know …

Uncivilized

Galena, Alaska sits on the north bank of the Yukon River on the 64th N parallel, just two parallels shy of the Arctic Circle.  Flying out of Galena’s now inactive Air Station in the summer of 1973 in my T-33, I once saw the sun set and rise within a 15-minute stretch.  As I climbed …

A Reflection on Pope Francis

I made my first trip to Argentina in 1990.  Although I took one year of Spanish in college in 1967, I was far from fluent, so I carried a small pocket dictionary.  After a 15-hour flight from St. Louis through Miami, my clothes were quite wrinkled.  The first word I learned from that dictionary was …