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 …

Mitakuye Oyasin

Mrs. tVM and I have the granddaughters — 2 and 5 — here this week until Saturday. This afternoon, young Xylia, 5-years-old said, “Dziadek — she calls me ‘Dziadek’ which is Grandfather in Polish — I think there is a hummingbird in the pool.”  Sure enough, the gentle soul floated lifelessly on the surface. I …

Martin Sheen: A Hero who Broke Through

Yesterday morning as I waited in the foyer of an assisted living facility, I glanced at a basket filled with old magazines.  The magazine on top of the pile was the AARP magazine.  I am not an “AARP guy,” but the cover picture was a picture of a smiling Ramón Antonio Gerardo Estévez, better known …

“I’ll Stand With You.”

Yesterday, October 16 marks the 44th anniversary of one of the most memorable events at any modern Olympic Games.  On October 16, 1968, silver medalist Peter Norman joined American gold medalist Tommie Smith – who had just become the first human to break the 20-second barrier in the 200-meter dash – and bronze medalist John …

The First Stone

Early in the week, I read an interesting piece on the Spirituality and Practice website entitled, “The First Stone or Hypocrite Stone.”  It is an unique practice presented by Tom Cowan.  I do not know Tom Cowan, but his suggestion makes perfect sense to me… “… carry a small stone in your pocket or purse …