Taking a moment

In her Sunday column, Tish Harrison Warren talks an aspect of our humanity. I think the larger arc of the story is part of something that I ponder: the role of technology in improving our lives. It is an age old argument with the promise of a better future, in part, enabled by scientific and technological discovery and implementation. For example, back when I was only single-digits old, my maternal grandparents lived in Utah. It might as well have been Mars. One did not simply “catch a flight” and travel cross country. With modern air travel Utah is but a few hours away, perhaps even non-stop. If my single-digit youth was here in the 2020s, Grandma and Grandpa Obray would have only been a zoom call away. And that would have been a good thing. I hope I would be able, interested, and willing to “catch a flight” to Paradise, Utah to visit the family homestead. Continue reading

The cords of life

About ten years ago I was serving as Pastor at Sacred Heart in Tampa. I had been in Tampa for six years and had no aspiration or desire to be elsewhere. It was the year that Pope Francis was elected. The joke in the parish office was that I was waiting for a call from Rome telling me that I have been appointed Papal Household Swim Coach.  Oddly enough, it was only a few weeks after the election when the parish telephone rang – and on the other end was a call from Rome.  It wasn’t an offer to be  swim coach, but rather it was the Minister General of the Franciscan Order worldwide asking me to consider a new job.  It was not a pastoral job, but a full time job more akin to running a business – and in a place where people wear sweaters even in summer. As a vowed Franciscan it was something I had to consider and take into prayer.

And then came the gospel for this week. Continue reading

Things you need to know

A friend sent me this list of things you just have to know!

  • On average, 100 people choke to death on ballpoint pens every year. 
  • A dentist invented the electric chair. I think he didn’t have many repeat patients.😂
  • TYPEWRITER is the longest word you can type using only the letters on one row of the keyboard.
  • A snail can sleep for three years.
  • The “pound” (or hashtag) key on your keyboard (#) is called an octothorpe.

You never know when you need to fill in the gap in conversation at some gathering!