Thursday, October 31, 2019

Christ the King Festival - St. Mary’s, KS

Every year the Society of St. Pius X sponsors a Christ the King Festival at its Chapel/Academy/College in St. Mary’s, Kansas the last weekend of October.  If you live within driving distance like us, it’s a fantastic and edifying event to attend, as we were fortunate to do this last weekend.

We left vey early Saturday morning with the intention of making their 9 am Low Mass.  No such luck.  Rain and then my need for a road side nap slowed us down.  Arrived at friends’ house to stay there the night, went to The Friendship House for lunch in a nearby town, then shopped for food to make Filipino dishes for the Festival, went home to cook, enjoyed a backyard fire and the Fall weather, then take out Mexican before getting to bed. 

Sunday was ecstatic, full of energy.   There must’ve been more than 1,500 people for the Feast Day Solemn High Mass, after which a huge, long procession formed, led by priests, acolytes, and also volunteers leading the rosary and hymns through the streets of St. Mary’s.  It was like a Spiritual Booster shot to be united in prayer with so many Catholics who believe and practice the Faith as we do.  

After the procession, the people gather for hours of recreation, entertainment, and food in the large, picturesque church/school square, lined by many tables each representing a different Catholic culture.  My wife being Filipino, we brought homemade sticky rice and macaroni fruit salad.  I enjoyed dishing out pieces of mahal blanca, a coconut corn custard. 

Even ran into several old friends and acquaintances who hail from Tulsa, as well as the former infamous Tulsa chaplain Fr. Kenneth Novak.   Met some new friends, including a Filipino SSPX Sister, and a retired academy teacher who came up to us engaging us in a long conversation. 

It was definitely a festive, relaxing, and holy outing.  

Thursday, October 24, 2019

Back Early From Clear Creek Campout

When it rains it pours, and that it did.  At my long anticipated Fall Campout our at Clear Creek monastery.  The older I get the more I understand almost nothing in life is a sure thing, except death and taxes.  

Three days of prayer, meditation, hiking, fly-fishing, rib eyes, and Busch Lite.   Surrounded by chanting monks, and beautiful Fall colors.  Such was the plan.  

But God another plan.  He always does, doesn’t He.  A perpetual daily lesson. 

Yesterday started well.  Caught up with an old trad friend on the phone while driving to CC, about practical issues of medical ethics.  Arrived at what I’m going to call the hanging bridge campsite on CC land, which is right on the banks of the majestic creek.   

Took all my equipment out, made a quick fire, grilled up a steak.  A brother dropped by to unload a truck full of firewood, us unloading it talking about the weather.    Proceeded to setting up my brand new tent, took out the poles, one of the main poles being broken with a vital piece missing.   

I knew there may be rain that night and the next day, expecting to snuggle in, dry and warm with a good book.  But no such luck, with a broken pole the tent could not stand erect.  Which left me with
two choices, drive into Tahlequah an hour plus round trip and buy a new tent, or try and keep dry 
and warm on my bedding under the wall-less canopy I brought.  

That evening after my fire and more steak, the plan did work, me all warm and dry  despite the downpour, from 9pm til about 1am, when I woke up in a large puddle of water.  Fortunately after Vespers, Fr. Guestmaster had mentioned if I get flooded, to go down the road to the old monastery now in part used as a men’s guesthouse.  And that I did.  After changing into dry clothes, I snuggled into a wool blanket covered bed in one of the guest cells.  My homeostatic equilibrium regained, at least for a while. 

Long story short, I did manage to do a bit of hiking with a new hiking stick immersed in an array of Fall colors.  When I fished I caught one small bass, but when I put it in a stringer which I set on some rocks, I discovered just a few minutes later something had partly eaten it.   Such is the food chain.  Step out into the Wild, you are the one vulnerable to everything unpredictable.  

Next day (today, I’m writing this in the evening sitting in my couch with a blanket keeping snug with Peanut), I attended the High Mass, bought some excellent and well priced cheese made by these traditional monks, visited one of the community’s elders perched in his little cabin, then finished the wild but renewing outing having lunch with the monks.  Itself alone worth the trip and sacrifice.  

Monday, October 7, 2019

Monday Evening Thoughts

Just off from work. About to hit the pool at my gym.   Thought it’d be a good way to end the day of Labora to jot down some recent thoughts.  

All of you so inclined need to start your own blog, and perhaps relate it to your life as a Catholic.  It’s  even more therapeutic than journaling in my experience.   But really a blog is meant to be more like a journal than a bully pulpit.  

This Fall weather.   Cue the song Ode to Joy in its most triumphal parts.   What a divine tonic God gives us in this very moment of the year. Soothingly cool temperatures.  It’s as if our brains have figuratively and literally become less swollen by the inflammation that heat induces in the body.   Blood pressure and heart rate likewise subside. 

Red Bud Valley Nature Preserve.  A must this time of year for the avid Tulsa hiker.  As I am.  Went there early this last Saturday morning to kick off the weekend.   Before witnessing OU dominate another football game.  Go Sooners!  My Alma Mater.  Best State school here in the Heartland. Yessir. 

Calmer temperaments.  And I don’t know about you, but I’ve predictively noticed subsiding temperaments with subsiding temperatures.   It’s as if the high heat of the deep summer messes with our minds.   Had some very cantankerous individuals I was treating in July and August, but 
since September people seem more level-headed.  

Diocesan Latin Masses in Tulsa.  I want to reflect on this soon in a well organized post (as opposed to my off the cuff posts squeezing in some thoughts at the end of the day full of misspellings).   But as much as I generally support the whole cause of the Latin Mass Movement, in particular that unequivocal traditionalist stance against Catholic Modernism preached by the saintly Archbishop Lefebvre, I also whole-heartedly support the plan of every Roman rite parish have a Sunday Latin Mass.   Tradition cannot be just a private preference for a private club.   It is meant for everyone!  Everywhere!

Rib eye steak and my keto diet.   I’ve been faithfully getting back my a ketogenic metabolic state, great for burning body fat as well as extraordinary levels of physical and mental 

energy.  And so I’m getting out of my car to go into the gym, then home to grill a steak dipped in half a stick of melted butter, and grilled asparagus.  A keto diet is high fat, medium protein, low carb

Have a good rest of your week.  Planning more hiking plus local fly-fishing. 

Go Sooners.