Sunday, June 16, 2019

MY COUSIN'S BIG DAY



FATHER BOB (ROBERT EARL) RAY
Celebrating 50 Years of Priesthood

Our grandmothers, on our fathers' side, were sisters. 
His  youngest brother and my youngest sister were (before her death) married to each other. 
We have three nephews in common. 
He was ordained a priest in 1969.
I was ordained a priest in 1970.  




Father Ray during his First Mass in 1969. I served as his Deacon.





At our Confirmations in 1956. 



Saint Theresa's 175 anniversary celebration



At our home parish, Saint Theresa, for its 200th anniversary celebration.


FATHER RAY AT 50 YEARS

Celebrating his 50th anniversary Mass with deacon Greg Beaven


A full church of family and freinds. 



The parish presented him with a beautiful Paschal Candle



Some of the celebrating priests, deacons and women religious.

Friday, June 14, 2019

DO YOU NEED A GOOD LAUGH?

"I laughed out loud," 
is the most recurring response from people who have read my latest book. 

You can pick up a copy at:

Tonini Church Supply in Louisville
(502) 897-7100
966  Breckenridge Lane
Louisville, KY 40217

or

you can order a copy online. by clicking on 
"MY BOOKSTORE" under "LINKS" 
over on the right of this page.


ALL OF MY BOOKS ARE LISTED THERE







Wednesday, June 12, 2019

REPORT FROM THE 2019 CROOKSTON (MINNESOTA) PRIEST RETREAT



A FEW PHOTOS FROM THE CROOKSTON PRIEST RETREAT


Getting ready for one of the  retreat conferences..



A few of the tables at dinner time


My cabin is the one on the left. There are many cabins in this resort. 


Enjoying a cigar with a few of the priests.



We are on one of the many Minnesota lakes.


An after dinner walk with a few of the priest on our retreat.  




Morning Mass in our very small make-shift cabin chapel.



Former students of mine at Saint Meinrad: Matt, Raul, Vince and Nate. 



Some of the priests relaxing after dinner. Retired Bishop Balke is in the very center, back row.
Bishop Balke is a wonderful man and beloved former bishop of Crookston. 



We were on Pelican Lake



Another group of retreat priests relaxing by the lake



Enjoying lunch on a boat ride around the lake.



A pastor and his associate enjoying the Minnesota sunshine. 



Relaxed, refreshed and ready to go back to the parish - Father Vince. 

Sunday, June 9, 2019

EXCITED TO BE GOING BACK UP TODAY TO MINNESOTA....



...TO LEAD THE SPRING 2019 PRIEST RETREAT
Diocese of Crookston 




FAIR HILLS RESORT
June 9 - 13, 2019





Last time I got stuck in a late-in-the-year freak snow storm in the Minneapolis Airport. I didn't know how to handle it, but they did!  They managed to get me to Bemidji on time! This time I am flying into Fargo, North Dakota, just across the border! "It will be easier," they said! I wonder what this is going to mean? Hmmm!  


DIOCESE OF CROOKSTON

The Diocese of Crookston, Minnesota, borders on North Dakota on the west and Canada on the north. 


Aerial view of Crookston, Minnesota, with the Red Lake River twisting through the town

Crookston is a city in the U.S. state of Minnesota. It is the county seat of Polk County. The population was 7,891 at the 2010 census. It is part of the "Grand Forks, NDMN Metropolitan Statistical Area" or "Greater Grand Forks".

Crookston is the episcopal seat of the Roman Catholic Diocese of Crookston. Since Crookston is close to the larger city of Grand Forks, North Dakota, many people who live in Crookston commute to jobs in the Grand Forks area.



They really are nice people! I enjoy them so much! 





I will be flying into the Fargo, North Dakota, Airport, just over the border. 


Of course, I will be flying into Fargo on the "official Minnesota airlines" - "Lutheran Airlines!"
Click on their official advertisement below for a  "nice" laugh!




I hope they enjoy my teasing or else they will have a week to get even with Kentucky jokes! 

Friday, June 7, 2019

WHEN ENOUGH IS ENOUGH!



I Am Not Going To Wait Till Thanksgiving Day To Say It




I have said it before, but I would like to say it again. Sometimes I am overcome with feelings of gratitude. 

I joke with people sometimes and say, "I don't have problems, I have aggravations. There's a big difference so I try not to complain too much!"
I deal with people almost every day who have problems, real problems! Maybe the fact that I get to be part of their lives is why I am often overcome with feelings of gratitude when I hear about all they have to go through: sick children, aging parents, lost faith, financial difficulty, chronic illnesses, loneliness, drug addicted children and God know what else!

There is not much more that I need or even want. The only thing that I really crave at this point in my life is continued good health. My car is a few years old, but it runs just fine. I don't need or even want a new car. My condo in the Germantown area of Louisville is comfortable and is located in convenient spot. I neither need nor crave a bigger or better house. I buy clothes and shoes "on sale" on the internet and from places like Penny's and Target. I neither need nor crave fancy name-brands.  I have enough income to keep my bills paid, enough to give some to charity and enough saved to take care of myself in my old age. I travel for free to wonderful places leading priest convocations and even get paid for it. I have had the honor of meeting hundreds and hundreds of priests, bishops and even cardinals from at least fifty different countries. People loved my 15-year weekly column in The Record, still buy my books and respond positively to what I have to say when I preach or write.  

My family loves me and I love them. We get along extremely well. 
I am so happy to be invited back to the Cathedral to help out. I am honored to keep being asked by Bishops in the United States, Canada and the Caribbean to lead priest retreats. I am passionate about my volunteer work in the Caribbean missions and I am constantly amazed at people's generosity.  
I have a wide circle of interesting friends from various countries, walks of life, diverse religious convictions and economic levels. These friends stay in touch and are extremely supportive. If I ever really needed anything, they tell me they would be there in a flash.
 I have the ability to put the scandals of the Church in perspective. I know that the validity of the Church's message has never depended on the goodness of its messengers - certainly not mine!  Therefore, I remain hopeful. 
I am not itching to go just yet, but if I do I have the consolation of realizing that I went a whole lot further in life than I ever imagined growing up in Rhodelia. I will hopefully be at peace and, filled with gratitude, embrace my own death when the time comes. 

There is nothing I really crave here that I don't already have! 
I have been blessed and I certainly know it! 
At age 75, for all the above, I find myself so very, very grateful! 


Thursday, June 6, 2019

GOODBYE IRELAND! HELLO GERMANY!


MY IRISH FRIEND JUST LEFT!  

MY GERMANS FRIENDS WILL BE RETURNING SOON! 







The Schroth Sisters, Birgit and Inge, Are Coming to Visit Again

August 1 - August 13, 2019 

Inge and I met in Taize, France, at a world-wide youth  gathering back around 1976.  Inge and her parents, Helmut and Anny, used to visit quite often when they were alive. Birgit's first visit was last summer. I am happy to have them come back again this summer! They both speak fluent English which makes it possible for us to have a great time laughing and sharing stories. Inge is a retired teacher and Birgit is a supervisor of social workers. They are from the Stuttgart area of Germany.  


Here they are on a recent vacation in southern Italy.
Birgit is on the left and Inge is on the right.  




LAST SUMMER IN LOUISVILLE



Here they are relaxing on the deck of my condo last summer.
Birgit ( on the left) looks like their father, Helmut! Inge (on the right) looks like their mother Anny. 



Phyllis, me, Birgit and Jan



Inge and me