July 2004 Archives


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Greetings from Newark, CA. I am now sitting in the office of St. Edward Catholic Church. It may be weeks before I am moved in, but the guest room is comfortable. All the books still sit out in the storage shed in myriad boxes.

What with the whirlwind of my first weekend as Pastor, and then a 6:00am flight Monday morning back to Chicago, participation in a week long retreat dedicated to St. Gaspar del Bufalo held at St. Joseph College in Rensselaer, IN, it does not seem like I will have any time for blogging this week. Besides, I plan on leaving my computer at home and will not have access to email while on retreat.

Three years ago when I moved to Chicago, I took nine days for a drive and camping trip to get there. After I was in Chicago for a few days I flew back to Oakland for a Retrouvaille weekend.

This time I took four days for the move from Chicago to Newark and after I am here fore a few days I will fly back to Chicago for a Retreat.

Sr. Madelene used to call me a boomerang since I kept coming back. It still seems to be true.

I would appreciate it if you would keep all the priests, brothers, sisters and Companions or associates in your prayers this week. This is a National Retreat given in honor of the 50th anniversary of St. Gaspar del Bufalo's canonization.

So, the Blog will be silent until August 9th.

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I did 628 miles today, the longest day, but also the last day. I am here at the Provincial Center where I have had a second office these past three years. Tomorrow we have a Provincial Council meeting. That is one of the reasons I was in such a hurry to get here. I still have some work to do to get ready for the council meeting.

I go to my new parish on Saturday morning. It is located about 30 minutes south of here.

It was a long and boring trip, not the kind of thing that is fun to do alone. But I am grateful that I made it safely, and I look forward to the challanges and joys of being a pastor again.

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563 miles today. Well, it has been a long day. The first 50 miles took two hours because more than an hour of it was sitting in a five mile long parking lot. A big rig had caught on fire and both lanes were closed. I was about two and a half miles from the accident.

Tomorrow maybe the longest day, but tomorrow may find me at home. I can hardly wait.

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485 miles today until exhausted. I am supposed to be on vacation, but this time crunch makes the miles grueling. There are some nuts out on the road and they are driving those huge rigs.

Gas was a variety of prices, 1.87, 2.09, 1.95, and 2.25. I made nine stops today. The back will not let me sit much longer than that. Two more days until home. I am looking forward to being with people again.

The trip was a bit monastic, talking with no one and praying the various daytime hours at each stop. Bach's B minor mass was the accompaniment again. I had some chant in but it was too relaxing and was putting me to sleep. The Gloria from the Bach mass is pretty exciting. It was a good thing I have speed control.

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I drove 486 miles today, and now have turned in for the night. Gas was 2.29 in Chicago, 1.85 in Iowa, and 1.73 in Omaha.

The ride was boring enough, but I listened to the B minor Mass by Bach a couple of times and it made time go by a bit faster.

I hope to make it to Utah by tomorrow.

Blogging will depend on Internet access. I will take advantage of it when it is free.

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Okay, I am home from Cincinnati. It was a Reconciliation Conflict Management meeting with the Cincinnati/Dayton Retrouvaille community to clear up some problems they had been having. The meeting was held at a hotel in Ft. Mitchell, Kentucky.

Flew into Chicago this morning, and now it is time to pack the car and head to my new home in California. I was going to start driving today but decided to get a good nights sleep before beginning.

Does anyone live close to I-80?

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I leave in the morning for Cincinnati. Prayers appreciated for the Retrouvaille community there. Members of the International Board are attending their community meeting.

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I got a few things done today and even enjoyed a bit of the Arizona sunshine. One thing I did today was read a book I had picked up on a lark in a half-price book store in Cleveland.

I had seen the book before but had avoided it. Reactionary, overly conservative books are not my favorite, but this one was only $3.00 and so I thought I would check out anf see, just for fun, what this guy thought was wrong with Vatican II.

The book is titled: "What Went Wrong With Vatican II" by Ralph M. McInerney.

Well, I was surprised. It is an excellent book. It would be better titled "What Went Wrong After Vatican II." The author fully supports Vatican II and everything it proclaimed. His thesis is that there is a crisis of authority after the council and that the faithful have been forced to choose between the authority of dissident theologians and the ordinary magisterium of the church. The book was a very balanced presentation.

Another proof that you cannot judge a book by its cover.

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The Giants had a great game and I came home with a souvenir, a foul ball hit into the second deck off the bat of SF Giant Ray Durham in the top of the seventh.

One more game tomorrow night we have the treat of seeing Randy Johnson pitch.

They said it was going to be 112 degrees tomorrow, too.

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From Phoenix, AZ. Well, I get a few days of quiet here for vacation, BUT!!!!, both Province and Retrouvaille have given me work that needs to be done by the weekend. Arggghhh. Oh well, I will squeeze it in.

Tonight I see the Giants/Diamondbacks game. Go Giants!

Retrouvaille went very well. The teams were excellent. We had 30 couples. Continue praying for them as they continue their journey of healing.

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It is Retrouvaille time again. I believe this is the eighth weekend I have done since the first of the year. I will be on the Retrouvaille Weekend in Houston.

Please pray for the couples seeking healing in their marriages this weekend. The program will be presented in the following cities this weekend:

Ft. Worth Wichita Kansas City Houston

God, our Father,

Each Friday we recall the day when your Son, Our Lord Jesus Christ, suffered his passion and death for us, your sons and daughters. We gather today on this Friday as Retrouvaille weekends are beginning, seeking to assist couples who are suffering serious conflict.

Look down on your people in their moments of need, for you alone are the source of peace. Your Son suffered and died for them. Please see in their faces the pain of your Son. .As you strengthened him, so help them to work through their pain by trusting that you, Heavenly Father, will enable them to accept their pain and work toward their reconciliation, so that their Friday will be followed by a Sunday of hope leading to final victory.

Please use the teams as your instruments to bring about your holy will, through the guidance and strength of the Holy Spirit. The love you offer always exceeds the furthest expression of our human longing, for you are greater than the human heart. Direct each thought, each effort of this weekend, so that the limits of our faults and weaknesses may not obscure the vision of your glory or keep us from the peace you have promised.

We ask this through Christ Our Lord. Amen.

St. Joseph, Pray for us!

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For more on Precious Blood Companions click here.

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Even on Vacations, there always seem to be deadlines that intrude. My next article for Precious Blood Family is due today.

Ok it was done on limited resources. All my books are packed away, and reports are that they arrived in California today. It is a topic near and dear to my heart. I helped to begin Precious Blood Companions in the Province of the Pacific and was their director for several years.

The article was supposed to be 500-700 words. It is 900. Still I am sure that I left things out. I will wait to hear what that is when the Companions par excellence who drop by here leave their comments.

Click on the link below to read the whole article.

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Done, finished, complete, put a fork in it, it is done. It took the better part of two whole days. The experience of putting little numbers into little boxes. Some categories got divided 50/50, some two fifths/three fifths. It all balanced in the end, and I even figured out how to divide the remaining funds between two provinces. There was one two hour period where I searched in vain for the reason why I had a missing $3000 on the report. All the numbers were there, it just did not add up the same. It was such a relief to find that one figure, put a minus sign in front of it, and finally everything balances. I promise, I will never take another position where I have to be the one to compile the financial report. I am so grateful to be going to a parish with a fulltime book-keeper.

I am so ready for vacation.

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It has been a restful couple of days. I do not follow the American League much, so I did not know that the Cleveland Indians were so dominant when it come to the Oakland A's. I enjoyed the hospitality of some Cleveland fans when their team was winning, but I experienced some drunken near hostility in the section where I was sitting on the evening that the As demolished the Cleveland Bullpen with 13 runs and eventually finished the game at 16-7.

Sunday I attended Mass at the Cathedral of St. John the Evangelist. The Rector was the presider and preacher. I appreciated his homily a great deal, but he was a bit loose around the edges with the text of the mass. The music was simple and beautiful. One curiosity was the communion hymn. They used the antiphon from "A Simple Command" by Peloquin, and the verses came from "No Greater Love" by Joncas. I thought it worked well, and that early morning congregation sang it very well.

I enjoyed the singing of the Gloria. It was a simple chant setting by John Lee, the same one that had been used at my ordination.

Today there are no baseball games to attend. I am just relaxing, making it a mini retreat out here in the wilds of Plainsville, Ohio. Today was spent reading some of the books I brought punctuated with th psalms of the liturgy of hours. It is a muggy rainy day, but I took a side trip to the Presidential home of James Garfield and did a little tour of Presidential politics around 1880.

Tomorrow I return to Chicago for a few days before taking off again. There I will hopefully conclude the annual summer penance of putting numbers into little boxes, otherwise known as annual Financial Reports.

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Blogging will continue as Internet access is available

I leave in the morning (7/9/04) for Cleveland for a bit of vacation which includes three games with the Oakland A's and the Cleveland Indians. From Cleveland I head to Houston where I will be doing their Retrouvaille weekend. From Houston I go to Phoenix for more vacation, this time with a bunch of friends, and it includes two games with the San Francisco Giants and the Arizona Diamondbacks. From Phoenix I go to Cincinnati for a bit of Retrouvaille business. I hope you are all keeping that troubled community in your prayers. On July 25 I go from Cincinnati to Chicago. On the 25th I will retrieve my car and drive to St. Louis. That will begin the drive to my new home in California. I hope to arrive on the 29th because we have an all day Provincial Council meeting on the 30th. On the 31st and August 1st I will be spending my first weekend at the new parish. August 2nd I fly to Chicago. I will be on Retreat in Rensselaer, IN August 2-6. It is a national Retreat sponsored by the five Precious Blood Communities of men and women on the occasion of the 50th anniversary of the canonization of St. Gaspar del Bufalo. On August 6th I will fly back home to Newark, CA. August 7/8 is a busy weekend at the parish. On the 14th of August I fly back to Chicago as one of the men I have been working with these past three years will be making his final profession on the 15th. Also there is the whole process of unpacking, getting moved in and getting settled. I am hoping that by the end of August I will be getting back to sense of normality.

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The Chant CD


The recently recorded Chant CD may be ordered from Fr. Larry Heiman, CPPS. The Cds will be $10.00 each with $2.00 shipping.

I ordered a whole bunch for possible Christmas gifts. If you are on my Christmas gift list and want one before Christmas, let me know.

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Moving Day


The movers are expected today. I am still tieing up details, taping boxes, etc.

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I am not entirely sure I want to do this, but it was a significant part of the discussion Sunday night at Calvert House. I am assuming that people have read the Bishop's document on Politicians in Public Life.

This is not a political blog, and I am loath to discuss politics here. So nothing here can be construed as support for any candidate for political office.

The thing that troubles me: the discuss of an individual's conscience in the public arena. Refusing communion to anyone should not be part of public discussion. A pastor has an obligation to address the conscience of any Catholic who public professes erroneous views, but I am not entirely sure that the public arena is the best place to address that conscience. It is not good pastoral practice to declare someone in error, if I as a pastor have not addressed that person individually first.

The following is a comment from Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger. I find it the best thing I have read on the subject recent ly. It is balanced and clear.

The line that intrigues me:

When a Catholic does not share a candidate's stand in favour of abortion and/or euthanasia, but votes for that candidate for other reasons, it is considered remote material cooperation, which can be permitted in the presence of proportionate reasons.

Here is the whole document:

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Select pictures from the Chant institute and the recording
I took more than 300 pictures during the week and a half I was in Rensselaer. The link is to about 26 of my favorite pictures.

It was such an incredible week. I am going to do my best to be back next year. There is no one quite like Fr. Larry Heiman, CPPS. He is such a treasure.

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The movers come tomorrow.

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Kathy reports that Mom is home and they have given her some meds to relieve the pain and allow her to rest comfortably. Thanks for the prayers, especially for my sister who is taking some much needed vacation.

Happy 4th of July!

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Prayers would be appreciated for my Mother who was taken to Emergency this morning and is still there. Also for my sister who is attending to her needs at the moment. Mom will be 79 this September.

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Budgets, bills, reports, myriad numbers in myriad little boxes. It is a monthly, quarterly and annual penance.

I have not been looking forward to these days. It is the annual chore. It is the beginning of July and I am trying to close the books on the year. So I spent the entire day paying bills, and balancing check statements. It is a $257,000 budget to run this place, not terribly large by the standards of the parish I am going to, but there will be a fulltime bookkeeper there.

Well, after all the numbers were in place, I let the computer generate a first draft annual report. The chief achievement is to get the bottom line on the report to match the check book balanced statement. I remember last year spending half of a day looking for $0.35 cents.

Well, everything balanced on the first run. Everything balanced the first time, all the numbers figure out.

Small things like this excite me.

I still have to generate three separate reports for the two provinces and the other religious community. (Did I fail to mention that I was the formation director for the Glenmary Missioners this past year, another Institute of Apostolic Life. )

After the reports are run, filed and the movers come, I am on vacation. Yippee!!!

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Moving is so detailed. Changed the info today for Gas, electric, phones, cable, and bank, booked travel for Cleveland, Phoenix, Houston, Cincinnati, and changed address on Credit cards. American Express messed up the bill for the third month in a row. They seem to do this every summer and it always seems to cost me money. United Van Lines is coming Tuesday. The place is a mess and I can't find anything. But there is a huge stack of mail and a bunch of bills to pay. I just love financial reports. They are next. Cleveland and Phoenix are vacation, using up some free tickets. Houston and Cincinnati are both Retrouvaille. I have Gregorian chant going through my brain, so ended up singing the psalms all day. Actually, it made all the details pleasurable.

Actually this morning started out very well. I found myself wide awake at 4:50am this morning and so found myself out on the deck at 5:00am as the sun rose, chanting psalms and listening to the birds sing. It was a piece of heaven.

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Solemnity of the Most Precious Blood
July 1

Feast instituted in 1848, Pius IX, First Class Feast, 1934, Pius XI, 19th centenary of the redemption; After the Second Vatican Council it was joined to the feast of Corpus Christi, changing that feast to the Solemnity of the Body and Blood. The Solemnity of the Most Precious Blood is still observed in Precious Blood Communities.

By your Blood, O Lord, you have redeemed us from every tribe and tongue, from every nation and people: you have made us into the kingdom of God. (Rev 5:9-10)

Opening Prayer

by the blood of your Son
you have set all men free and saved us from death.
Continue your work of love within us,
that by constantly celebrating the mystery of our salvation
we may reach the eternal life it promises.
We ask this through Our Lord Jesus Christ,
Your Son, who lives and reigns with you
and the Holy Spirit, One God
For ever and ever.

First Reading
Exodus 12:21 27 Then Moses called all the elders of Israel, and said to them, "Select lambs for yourselves according to your families, and kill the passover lamb. Take a bunch of hyssop and dip it in the blood which is in the basin, and touch the lintel and the two doorposts with the blood which is in the basin; and none of you shall go out of the door of his house until the morning. For the LORD will pass through to slay the Egyptians; and when he sees the blood on the lintel and on the two doorposts, the LORD will pass over the door, and will not allow the destroyer to enter your houses to slay you. You shall observe this rite as an ordinance for you and for your sons for ever. And when you come to the land which the LORD will give you, as he has promised, you shall keep this service. And when your children say to you, 'What do you mean by this service?' you shall say, 'It is the sacrifice of the Lord's passover, for he passed over the houses of the people of Israel in Egypt, when he slew the Egyptians but spared our houses.'" And the people bowed their heads and worshiped.

Responsorial Psalm
Psalms 103:1-2, 3-4, 6-7, 8,11

R./ You have redeemed us, O Lord, in your Blood.

Bless the LORD, O my soul,
and all that is within me, bless his holy name.
Bless the LORD, O my soul,
and do not forget all his benefits--

The Lord who forgives all your iniquity,
who heals all your diseases,
who redeems your life from the Pit,
who crowns you with steadfast love and mercy,

The LORD works vindication and justice
for all who are oppressed.
He made known his ways to Moses,
his acts to the people of Israel.

The LORD is merciful and gracious,
slow to anger and abounding in steadfast love.
For as the heavens are high above the earth,
so great is his steadfast love toward those who fear him;

Second Reading
Hebrews 9:11 15 But when Christ appeared as a high priest of the good things that have come, then through the greater and more perfect tent (not made with hands, that is, not of this creation) he entered once for all into the Holy Place, taking not the blood of goats and calves but his own blood, thus securing an eternal redemption. For if the sprinkling of defiled persons with the blood of goats and bulls and with the ashes of a heifer sanctifies for the purification of the flesh, how much more shall the blood of Christ, who through the eternal Spirit offered himself without blemish to God, purify your conscience from dead works to serve the living God. Therefore he is the mediator of a new covenant, so that those who are called may receive the promised eternal inheritance, since a death has occurred which redeems them from the transgressions under the first covenant.

Mark 14:12 16, 22-26 And on the first day of Unleavened Bread, when they sacrificed the passover lamb, his disciples said to him, "Where will you have us go and prepare for you to eat the passover?" And he sent two of his disciples, and said to them, "Go into the city, and a man carrying a jar of water will meet you; follow him, and wherever he enters, say to the householder, 'The Teacher says, Where is my guest room, where I am to eat the passover with my disciples?' And he will show you a large upper room furnished and ready; there prepare for us." And the disciples set out and went to the city, and found it as he had told them; and they prepared the passover. And as they were eating, he took bread, and blessed, and broke it, and gave it to them, and said, "Take; this is my body." And he took a cup, and when he had given thanks he gave it to them, and they all drank of it. And he said to them, "This is my blood of the covenant, which is poured out for many. Truly, I say to you, I shall not drink again of the fruit of the vine until that day when I drink it new in the kingdom of God." And when they had sung a hymn, they went out to the Mount of Olives.

Prayer Over The Gifts
by offering these gifts in this Eucharist
may we come to Jesus the Mediator of the New Covenant,
find salvation in the sprinkling of his blood
and draw closer to the kingdom
where he is Lord for ever and ever.

Father, all powerful and ever-living God,
we do well always and everywhere to give you thanks
through Jesus Christ our Lord.

Him you sent into this world,
that, as paschal victim,
he might free all people from the power of evil,
and redeem the lost sheep
cleansed from all sin in his Precious Blood.
All who have washed their robes in the Blood of the Lamb
will follow him,
and share in eternal glory.

And so, with all the choirs of angels in heaven
we proclaim your glory
and join in their unending hymn of praise:

The cup that we bless is a communion with the blood of Christ; and the bread that we break is a communion with the body of Christ. (1 Cor 10:16)

Prayer After Communion
Lord you renew us with the food and drink of salvation.
May the Blood of our Savior
be for us a fountain of water
springing up to eternal life.
We ask this through Christ our Lord.

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Date: July 1, 2004

Dear Precious Blood Network:

A vote on the Federal Marriage Amendment to the U.S. Constitution is expected to occur in the Senate as early as mid-July. The measure, introduced as S.J. Res. 30 by Sen. Wayne Allard (R-Co), reads as follows: "Marriage in the United States shall consist only of the union of a man and a woman. Neither this Constitution, nor the constitution of any state, shall be construed to require that marriage or the legal incidents thereof be conferred upon any union other than the union of a man and a woman."

This proposed amendment leaves legislative decisions on civil unions or domestic relationships up to the state legislatures.

Opponents to the amendment are expected to mount a filibuster, keeping the issue from a vote. Bishop Wilton Gregory and the USCCB offices ask that the following message be sent to your two U.S. Senators:

Do not allow a filibuster on the Federal Marriage Amendment so that the substance of the amendment can be voted on.

For more information please see: Click here Thank you!

Stephanie Mertens, ASC

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  one of Fr. Keyes' photos

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About this Archive

This page is an archive of entries from July 2004 listed from newest to oldest.

June 2004 is the previous archive.

August 2004 is the next archive.

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