Tuesday, April 28, 2009

More of what is wrong today.

I saw this article last week but chose to ignore it. Today it has surfaced again here in the Toronto Star Newspaper.
I just have to shake my head, no I am not a saint nor do I think I ever will be. Yes I do make mistakes in my life and yes I do sin and luckily I am able to ask for forgiveness of my actions and I also have the ability to learn from them. But the following article is another scoop onto the sundae if you will of what is going wrong in the world today.
Marriage was once a sacred institution is now today just a joke reduced to a term like a car payment. Here is the article and judge for yourselves.

Do you expect your marriage to last forever? Maybe that's the problem.

Imagine if love had term limits. Imagine if marriage was not steeped in romantic ideals but was based on a business contract. Imagine if wedding vows sounded like this:

"To have and to hold, from this day forward, for better for worse, for richer for poorer, in sickness and in health, for the next 60 months (some terms and conditions apply)."

That's what an Australian marketing expert proposed last week.

"We have fixed-term contracts for the buying of property, cars and insurance, but there is only one contract available for marriage and it is for life," wrote Helen Goltz in Queensland's Courier-Mail. "Is it time to consider introducing fixed-term marriage contracts?"

Her argument: Since divorce rates are skyrocketing, we should remove all that "till death do us part" pressure. Then we could create a no-fault system in which marriage becomes just another "five-year contract."

If you remain in love with your spouse after tying a partial knot, no problem, just tie it again before the dissolution date. If you begin to believe your spouse was the biggest mistake of your life, no big deal, you can bid adieu when the contract expires.

Getting married would be like leasing a car: If you were expecting a luxury sedan but drove away in a rusting lemon, you could take it back to the dealership and find another ride on the road of life.

This is one those ideas that sounds reasonable at first but becomes insane the more you think about it.

Personally, I like marriage just the way it is. That is, I like knowing there is no easy way out of my existing contract.

Do you know how many chores I would shirk without the fear of eternal wrath? The only reason I take out the garbage or clean the litter boxes is because my contract clearly stipulates that penalties can be incurred yesterday, today or tomorrow – you just never know.

My wife, I'm guessing, would also balk at signing a new contract. Why would she abandon a plan in which self-interest rates are at historic highs?

Under her current contract, she has veto power over all domestic affairs. If she decides we need a bigger vehicle to transport the little hellions around town, I just ask, "Wagon or minivan, dear?" If she says we need to reconfigure the basement to yield a higher square-foot ratio of children-to-adult indoor space, I tiptoe downstairs late at night, throw my arms around my beloved wet bar and sob into its tacky bricks:

"Goodbye, old friend. I shall never forget you."

Under a fixed-term contract, you see, my wife might be forced to explain a decision with more than a shrug or casual: "That's just the way it's going to be." There is also no possible way a fixed-term contract could beat her existing contract's perk of unlimited nagging on weekends and on weeknights after 6.

According to Goltz, a fixed-term marriage would "encourage partners to work toward maintaining a good relationship – in effect, it opens communication akin to a marriage performance review."

Right, because that's what every guy needs.

"Honey, come in and have a seat at the foot of the bed. So I've completed your performance review and areas for improvement include listening, watching less sports on TV, remembering to feed the children when you're in charge, talking more when we're around my folks and, in general, helping out without being asked.

"But the good news is you have an entire lifetime to work on this!"

Leaves me scratching my head!

Friday, April 24, 2009

This and That

So another week gone by. Time does certainly fly and went by extremely quickly this week. I was able to make a small web site for my parish and have sent the link to Father B and I am awaiting his verdict. I think he will be pleased about it.
I think it might be me but the news and what goes on these days just makes one shake their heads and really want to just turn inward and not listen. Sometimes the news is extremely disturbing and other times you just shake your head and laugh that some people have no sense at all. Luckily I try to immerse myself more into happenings in the Catholic Church and also try to learn more about the faith. That part really shows there is a lot to learn and also weeding out what you read about the church as to being right or fact or opinion is amazing. Yes I continue at times to struggle with the faith but really this makes for more of an amazing journey.
One news article going around and has lit my life up is Susan Boyle from Scotland. Yes the non glamour looking singer. I watched her video and was utterly disgusted with the behaviour of the judges and the audience. But when she started singing well I was in tears. Truly the voice of an angel from above. There are a very few female singers who move me. Yes me the classic rock guru but who with age has expanded his listening field. Singers like Billie Holiday who really was the angel of Harlem. Well Susan Boyle is up there.
It is sad to think that as a society we now anticipate the perceived "Hollywood" looks to be accepted as a performer with talent. We have forgotten to put the talent first. There is a well written article about Susan Boyle and our perceptions found here.
Really I generally do not watch these shows because too many times talent is eliminated in a form of a popularity contest. Jennifer Hudson another excellent singer who from my understanding did not win at Idol. Really shows what is wrong. But Susan Boyle should make each and everyone of us reflect as to how we perceive all people and then reflect on ourselves and how to improve our own inner self. Have a nice weekend!

Saturday, April 18, 2009

After Easter

Hopefully you all had a wonderful and joyous Easter. I certainly did and for what ever reason this year through Easter I started not only to understand the readings more I also seemed to absorb them more than before. I am not sure if this makes sense to you but it does to me.
Father B had the church looking good and everybody on board for readings and helping out. In fact he even emailed the whole powerpoint display to me for the Saturday night mass as it was long and I had to make sure I had the right screen up at the right time. It helped and everything worked to perfection.
As mentioned I seemed to absorb more this year than ever before and found myself thinking about what and why Jesus did for us and what he sacrificed for us and the pain we put him through. It really somehow was astounding for me to think this way but it did getting me thinking more and more about the church, the scriptures and Jesus. Maybe I have turned a corner?
Just for some thinking as to where we are in the world today and how the church is really under attack especially here in North America the first reading today does have some meaning in relation to that. Read through, digest and think about how this passage applies today.

1st Reading: Acts 4:13-21
The leaders, elders, and scribes were astonished at the boldness of Peter and John, considering that they were uneducated and untrained men. They recognized, also, that they had been with Jesus, but, as the man who had been cured stood beside them, they could make no reply.
So they ordered them to leave the council room while they consulted with one another. They asked, "What shall we do with these men? Everyone who lives in Jerusalem knows that a remarkable sign has been given through them, and we cannot deny it. But to stop this from spreading any further among the people, let us warn them never again to speak to anyone in the name of Jesus." So they called them back and charged them not to speak or teach at all in the name of Jesus.
But Peter and John answered them, "Judge for yourselves whether it is right in God's eyes for us to obey you rather than God. รข€‰We cannot stop speaking about what we have seen and heard." Then the council threatened them once more and let them go. They could find no way of punishing them because of the people who glorified God for what had happened.

Saturday, April 11, 2009

Good Friday

Well It was an interesting Good Friday with quite the contrasts in delivery between the two churches I attended.

The first service was at my regular parish and the mass was very traditional and actually quite well attended. We went early so I could go over the slides for the mass with Father B. We also took part in the stations of the cross which was very humbling to say the least. Mass started at 3:00pm sharp and as mentioned was very nice and traditional and very humbling.

In the evening my daughter and I went to our former parish to see the Passion play as one of her very good friends were in it. Actually we have been going for the last 3 years. The 2 previous years we went and it was on Palm Sunday afternoon. The Deacon presided over the small mass and introduced the Passion. Just before the start of the Passion there was a request to which the result almost made me scream!
It seems there had been issues as we were told with the sound and it was believed that cell phones were causing interference with the sound system and if those who had a cell phone if they would turn off their phones. Well of the 300 or so people about 200 had cell phones on. Is it me but what do you need a cell phone for when you go to mass. Yes I have a cell phone but never in my life have I taken into the church nor would I. But this was unreal and the worst part of it, as soon as the Passion Play was over people were turning on their phones. Totally unbelievable.
Certainly this is wrong but I guess this is the liberal permissive Catholic Church. I don't know and don't understand. It seems the older I get well you know the rest.
Oh just for those who want to know the Passion Play was very well done and my hats off to the kids.
Have a great Easter!

Tuesday, April 7, 2009

This and that!

Well it was a beautiful mass that Father B arranged on Palm Sunday. He even added a few extra slides to have displayed while the passion was being read. The usual palm leaves also. Now we are getting ready for Holy week starting on Thursday night.
There was an interesting occurrence at the end of mass as we were read in English a letter from the Bishop which was sent to the local paper. It was in regards to a political cartoon of Pope Benedict XVI. Apparently the Holy father has his mouth taped after his speech on the distribution of condoms. The Bishop took quite the exception to this especially in regards to this matter ( which I have commented on already) and as Father B clearly pointed out after that the irony here is that the newspaper has and is given freedom of expression but yet they want to deny it to the Holy father and the approximately 1 billion catholics and send this does not make sense.
As mentioned I have very little time the last few years for the glorification of daily occurrences for the sake of television ratings. I also am sick of we only report enough to shock you and never divulge the whole story. Really maybe in Canada and the US we should have the news stations and press investigated for how inaccurately they do portray the news.
Okay enough of that, yesterday I celebrated the big 50 and hope to get at least half as many years in yet. Certainly some prayers would help for that.
While until later take care as always!

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

Home Again!

Back from the hospital. I was away Monday night and all of yesterday for a sleep study. Last real chance to get my drivers license back.
I tried but have difficulty sleeping elsewhere and even more where they have about 20 wires hooked to your body. Then during the day they want to see if and how deeply you dose off as you are given 4 nap periods. Nobody has ever answered my question though do they want to have you sleep or try to stay awake. I did the daytime test once and due to the lack of sleep the night before from the sleep study I apparently did poorly. I apparently fell asleep quickly. I did ask the doctor how this daytime study reflects reality? He asked me what I meant by this? I basically told him my boss does not throw me into a dark room to see if I will fall asleep. I function at a high level during the day when occupied when not such as the occasional weekend yes I will have a nap.
Worst thing out of this is this doctor wants to perform surgery on me and I am not going to let him, at least that is the road he is pointing me onto. I think I will rather not drive although that does deprive me of a lot of freedom but so be it. Funny I had driven for 33 years without a major accident and only a couple of speeding tickets and I have my license pulled and very little chance of getting it back. If I would have driven drunk and killed someone I would have been driving until my trial and then maybe have a suspension and then have it given back after the suspension. My current suspension is indefinite until the government is happy which will be never and the operations being proposed are not something I want to go through as one of the options could lead to disfigurement.
The good thing about the test though was the nurse who worked with me Monday night. She allowed me onto the Internet with her passport and I was able to go to the catholic sites I visit and blogs for this may God bless her!
Well until next time take care!