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Retreat is over, but…

So, the mandatory canonical diocesan retreat that never was because of COVID-19 is over (we priests of Charlotte Diocese did up our own retreats). More on that later.

This week I’ve begun a series of staycations vs vacation. Priests in the boonies never get much of a chance to go anywhere because there is only one priest per parish vs the city slickers who can have as many as four priests per parish. That’s just fine by me. I love staycations.

The picture above was taken last night at a priest-friend’s house. We barbequed some brats and chicken breasts and squash and cucumbers. He’s a fantastic chef. I took the opportunity to go to Confession. It’s been ten days or so. I love Confession.

I will be putting up some posts. I’m working on one about the fruit of the retreat. God is good. So are guardian angels.

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But I measure life in donkey years

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420 years. Hahaha. I human year is seven dog years. The above is a card I received from out East. Anyway, getting to that which is more relevant, 1 human year is about 2 donkey years. I measure life in donkey years. So in human years I’m 60, but in donkey years I’m 120. And that’s the iconic biblical age. Meanwhile, what is age? Grace turns to glory as St Paul says, and that’s eternal in heaven.

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Mail Fraud $1,000,000 fine + 30 years

RCMP

Oh my! What building is this, and where? A word to the wise. Mail Fraud is a Federal Crime in these USA along the lines of RICO, with jurisdiction claimed by the Feds if there’s anything interstate or international. We do have an extradition agreement with the very friendly country from where this activity originates. Let’s take a quick gander at 18 USC § 1341:

  • “Whoever, having devised or intending to devise any scheme or artifice to defraud, or for obtaining money or property by means of false or fraudulent pretenses, representations, or promises, or to sell, dispose of, loan, exchange, alter, give away, distribute, supply, or furnish or procure for unlawful use any counterfeit or spurious coin, obligation, security, or other article, or anything represented to be or intimated or held out to be such counterfeit or spurious article, for the purpose of executing such scheme or artifice or attempting so to do, places in any post office or authorized depository for mail matter, any matter or thing whatever to be sent or delivered by the Postal Service, or deposits or causes to be deposited any matter or thing whatever to be sent or delivered by any private or commercial interstate carrier, or takes or receives therefrom, any such matter or thing, or knowingly causes to be delivered by mail or such carrier according to the direction thereon, or at the place at which it is directed to be delivered by the person to whom it is addressed, any such matter or thing, shall be fined under this title or imprisoned not more than 20 years, or both. If the violation occurs in relation to, or involving any benefit authorized, transported, transmitted, transferred, disbursed, or paid in connection with, a Presidential declared major disaster or emergency (as those terms are defined in section 102 of the Robert T. Stafford Disaster Relief and Emergency Assistance Act (42 U.S.C. 5122), or affects a financial institution, such person shall be fined not more than $1,000,000 or imprisoned not more than 30 years, or both.

On face value, a certain person in another country has done this with me multiple times over the last number of years, and is insisting on continuing this activity in future regardless of my vociferous rejections. Amounts have escalated.

Without wanting at all to cash anything, I had the last volley of a financial instrument investigated internationally. There is no such account number anywhere for anything.

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To the purported Canunk sending monetary instruments of one kind or another

Please, don’t send anything. I won’t cash anything. I can’t. I won’t. Sorry. It is what it is. Sorry I can’t explain more. I can’t do anything with it. It isn’t going to happen. Don’t do it. Sorry. I have my reasons. Please respect that. Having said that, please, accept my blessing and gratitude. May the Prince of the Most Profound Peace shower abundant blessings upon you and your family.

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980 miles 14 hours 26 mins return trip in one day: “For you, Father Byers”

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People come to the parish from all over the country. It really is very beautiful here. The Great Smoky Mountains are the most visited National Park in the country. The “Anglo” couple that came to the “Spanish Mass” last night, however, were not here for the sightseeing and leaf-lurking now that the colors of the trees are changing gloriously. They arrived at night and left at night. 980 miles 14 hours 26 mins return trip in one day. That’s not as the crow flies, but as the car drives, pretty much, I’m guessing, to the inch, to the second (not counting stops or the Mass), to the pews here at Holy Redeemer Church in Andrews, NC, all the way from […].

Since we’re the tiniest parish in North America, any visitors stand out.

  • After Mass, I asked: “Where’re y’all from?”
    • […] was the answer.
  • “That’s a really long way!” I exclaimed.
    • “Yes, we just got here and we’re going back right now. We came just for the Mass. All you for, Father Byers. And thank you for the homily. It was good.”
  • “Be safe out there!” I said as they scampered out the door.

They looked alert, but dead tired. Nice couple. The “For you, Father Byers” wasn’t connected with anything I was up to at Mass last night, and surely this wasn’t about the homily. So, that, of course, left me wondering. Theirs was not an easy trip. And they were as old as me, so they would really be tired when they got back sometime on Sunday. I hope they made it back safe and sound.

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My tiny blog shadow banned?

Someone dropped a comment to say that following the blog via email doesn’t work for her because the link in the email notification is corrupted. Anyone else with that problem? This has apparently been going on for many months. Mind you, server names from Google and YouTube are frequently present, spending great amounts of time and going through very many posts, in other words, real people, not just bots. So, what’s that?

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Progress on church renovation

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We’re ripping up the wretched carpet perhaps dating to the 1960s. A start:

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All gone…

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Continuing today with laying down a new floor on the Epistle side. This will include the floors of both sides of the confessional…

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The Day of the Child in this parish. America learning from Mexico.

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Besides Fathers Day and Mothers Day, our Mexican friends also have the Day of the Child. The piñata was beaten to death. Very sweet, that.

The suspension rope was attached to the shrine of Mary on the one side, and someone on the roof of the carport of the social hall held the other side, lifting the piñata now and again so that it would be even more difficult to be smashed apart by the blindfolded participant. Wildly swinging a stick much like a baseball bat can be pretty dangerous, but the insurance company hasn’t forbidden it, and, in the end, no one was hurt during this fun. What a good idea, Fathers Day, Mothers Day, AND the Day of the Child.

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יום העצמאות – Yom Haatzmaut – Celebrating Israeli Independence Day

72:1 Give the king Thy judgments, O God,
And Thy righteousness unto the king’s son;

2 That he may judge Thy people with righteousness,
And Thy poor with justice.

3 Let the mountains bear peace to the people,
And the hills, through righteousness.

4 May he judge the poor of the people,
And save the children of the needy,
And crush the oppressor.

5 They shall fear Thee while the sun endureth,
And so long as the moon, throughout all generations.

6 May he come down like rain upon the mown grass,
As showers that water the earth.

7 In his days let the righteous flourish,
And abundance of peace, till the moon be no more.

8 May he have dominion also from sea to sea,
And from the River unto the ends of the earth.

9 Let them that dwell in the wilderness bow before him;
And his enemies lick the dust.

10 The kings of Tarshish and of the isles shall render tribute;
The kings of Sheba and Seba shall offer gifts.

11 Yea, all kings shall prostrate themselves before him;
All nations shall serve him.

12 For he will deliver the needy when he crieth;
the poor also, and him that hath no helper.

13 He will have pity on the poor and needy,
And the souls of the needy he will save.

14 He will redeem their soul from oppression and violence,
And precious will their blood be in his sight.

15 That they may live, and that he may give them of the gold of Sheba,
That they may pray for him continually,
Yea, bless him all the day.

16 May he be as a rich cornfield in the land upon the top of the mountains;
May his fruit rustle like Lebanon;
And may they blossom out of the city like grass of the earth.

17 May his name endure for ever;
May his name be continued as long as the sun;
May men also bless themselves by him;
May all nations call him happy.

18 Blessed be the LORD God, the God of Israel,
Who only doeth wondrous things;

19 And blessed be His glorious name for ever;
And let the whole earth be filled with His glory.
Amen, and Amen.

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Ambassador Danon at United Nations: history lesson on Jewish Land of Israel

 

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Public Schools teaching children Islam

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Explaining Islam to School Board

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Spring cleaning: more bits of the hermitage fly away

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27 tonne log-splitter and 250 gallon roof water bucket… gone. There are those who can use them more than me. I said, “Awww…” to express my sadness as a pieces of my life were carted away. The people carting them away laughed at my “Awww…” commiserating with me. Lots of memories:

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Spring cleaning is not what our Lord would consider as almsgiving. He might ask, “What took you so long?” And then add, “Pfft!”, in good humor, of course.

There’s much more and much less to almsgiving than what I did here. Real almsgiving is all about our Lord’s charity and not our mere largess. We are to be so absent from our own almsgiving that our our left hand (recalling “sinister”, sorry lefties) doesn’t know what our right hand (recalling the power of God and even “ben yamin” Benjamin, recently mocked in the Congress of these USA) is doing.

Almsgiving is about the Body of Christ. He draws all to Himself as He is lifted up on the Cross, so that, as Saint Paul says, He is the Head of the Body and we the members, so that we, by redemption, belong to each other, hopefully also by way of salvation.

Question: Do you have things you don’t even use that someone else could really use and you’re hanging on to those things just because there is some emotional attachment? This kind of thing is an easy introduction to almsgiving. Our Lord might say “Pfft!” in good humor. He is so very patient with us, and teaches us about the solidarity we are to have with each other in this otherwise dark world.

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Erasing my mom?

Today I discovered that a recent article about my mom had been deleted. WordPress makes it difficult to trash posts. In the main editor, you have to scroll the sidebar, click the tiny trashcan, and then wait for another screen to come up with a dialog box that is waiting for a confirmation click indicating that you really want to delete the post.

When I noted that it wasn’t there, I went in search of it in the drafts, among those marked “personal” and finally found it in the trash. It’s restored now:

Verbalize your evaluation of your mother, Father George

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Thanks dearest Charlene

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Some treats for a happy Laudie-dog and a happy Shadow-dog.

Jesus said, “Amen, I say to you, there is no one who has given up house or brothers or sisters or mother or father or children or lands for my sake and for the sake of the gospel who will not receive a hundred times more now in this present age: houses and brothers and sisters and mothers and children and lands, with persecutions, and eternal life in the age to come. (Mark 10:29-30nab)

Meanwhile I look upon dearest Charlene, retired from the State Department  and long time helper of Father Gordon and godmother of Max… as my elder sister.

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Blocked! I’m suspicious! It is to laugh. So: *Whateevveerr…*

suspicious web page blocked

Not the first time. I can’t count the times with various blogs through the years. The note speaks of phishing and generically of “internet security” and it is not said if the blocking was by way of algorithm or by human intervention, meaning that it can be flagged because of ideological perspectives whether directly or by a thusly tweaked algorithm. Whateevveerr…

I do know that there has been quite a precise interest in a recent post on toxic clouds the other day, you know, by certain agencies. Whateevveerr…

I do know that firstly youtube and immediately after google (linex) [always in that order and in that way] have shown quite a precise interest in a certain recent post on the Congressional grilling of their CEO the other day. Whateevveerr…

At the same time, weirdly, I got a “scam call” with an odd menu, which I just ignored until, in like three more seconds, it hung up. What makes that one particular call among zillions of such calls is that my phone was set to total silence for the sake of not being disturbed at Holy Mass. No notifications. No ringing for calls. Nothing. But it rang for that call. Looking for an oral comment? Whateevveerr… Just a bug inside the phone, I’m sure. “He’s cute!” ;-)

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This guy was climbing the church walls. He must be the bug in the system of my phone.

Also, weirdly, at the same time, I got a note on privacy setting changes for just one account I haven’t used or even accessed for like seven years (and that I totally forgot about) that I created specifically to comment on a friend’s blog called jihadwatch something like ten years ago. It has an email address that I also used to bait terrorists and terrorist funding organizations at that time, but not since. That was good recreation. I learned a lot about the Qur’an from the perspective of terrorists as well. I used that for my ecclesiastical thriller novel Jackass for the Hour. I know, I have to get back to that. Anyway, with that account, I learned just how it is that I could easily work up relationships with the worst of the worst. And while people might know the exterior details of that, it’s quite another thing to know the why of it all. That takes something else than mere analysis. Anywhere, whenever you get privacy setting changes for just one of many, it seems that it’s a CYA move on a provider’s part for liberality of actions to the contrary which they’ve already taken. Whateevveerr… I’m sure whoever reads all of that will be inspired.

As I say, my life is an open book. Whateevveerr…

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Another dragon as drama continues

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Our parish campus has been shut down from right after I got back from the diocesan retreat for all the priests of the diocese at the beginning of October 2018. There’s about no chance that we’ll get in this weekend, so it looks like were aiming at being at the Community Center once again for the Masses in Andrews. The whole schedule for this weekend is as follows:

  • 4:00 PM Saturday for the Spanish Mass with a baptism at Andrews City Community Center.
  • 8:30 AM Sunday English Mass at Prince of Peace in Robbinsville with Adoration and Confessions previous to that.
  • 11:15 AM Sunday English Mass at Andrews City Community Center.

The state of the plumbing is such that we have dragons appearing…

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Lol

A reader sent in the above screen shot adding: “There is something weirdly appropriate about this visual“. Note the URL in the address bar.

Lol. I took down that post because the guy looked up the wrong squadron of the wrong group of the wrong wing originating from the wrong base flying for the wrong people.

No wonder my father didn’t exist where the archivist was looking.

The search continues.

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Dragon in the basement

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Dried up dragon in dried up doodoo. Kind of like hell. That’s in the only basement of the church campus, and part of why we closed everything down, the sewerage being everywhere. So…

Vigil Mass in Spanish will be in Andrews Community Center on Saturday 4:00 PM October 27, 2018. There will also be a baptism.

The first Sunday Mass will be 8:30 AM at Prince of Peace Mission in Robbinsville.

The second Sunday Mass will be at 11:15 at the Andrews Community Center.

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Today, I’m a meth head

dung snow

My symptoms are a bit of a headache, a bit of nausea, dizziness, drowsiness…

For the past six hours I’ve been breathing in methane, not that I wanted to.

We had yet another plumbing catastrophe in the church of Holy Redeemer in Andrews.

  • A plumber came over.
  • The town water / sewerage guy came over.
  • The diocesan property specialists were contacted.
  • Advice from diocesan lawyers was had.
  • Suggestions were made.

But it’s the weekend. Nothing can be done until Monday. So…

The Vigil Mass is cancelled as the Community Center is busy on Saturday.

Sunday Mass in Andrews is moved to 11:15 AM in the Community Center about a mile away on the far side of Main Street in town.

We’ll see what happens on Monday. I’m hoping insurance can pay for documenting what’s wrong, for doing the fix, the cleanup, the disinfection. There may just be some routing work, but maybe some backhoe work, maybe some tearing up the concrete floor of the basement.

The good part is we can offer this for the release of the souls in purgatory. :-)

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