Thursday, April 25, 2019


In her lifetime (1451-1504), Queen Isabella of Spain bathed twice.

Elephants are the only animals that can't jump.

During his or her lifetime, the average human will grow 590 miles of hair.

Crossing one's fingers is a way of secretly making the Sign of the Cross. It was started by early Christians to ask for divine assistance without attracting the attention of pagans.

The largest number of children born to one woman is recorded at 69. From 1725 - 1765 a Russian peasant woman gave birth to 16 sets of twins, 7 sets of triplets and 4 sets of quadruplets.

George Washington died the last hour of the last day of the last week of the last month of the last year of the 18th century.

Charlie Chaplin once won third place in a Charlie Chaplin look-alike contest.

The first coin operated machine ever designed was a holy water dispenser that required a five-drachma piece to operate it. It was the brainchild of the Greek scientist, Hero, in the 1st century A.D.

The U.S. interstate highway system requires that one mile in every five must be straight. These sections can be used as airstrips in a time of war or other emergencies.

Americans consume 42 tons of aspirin per day.

Women blink nearly twice as much as men.

It's possible to lead a cow upstairs...but not downstairs.

Money isn't made out of paper ---it's made out of linen.

Sharks are apparently the only animals that never fall ill. As far as is known, they are immune to every known disease including cancer.

If two flies were left to reproduce without predators or other limitations for one year., the resulting mass of flies would be the size of the earth.

It's illegal in Alabama to wear a fake mustache that causes laughter in church.

In parts of Alaska, it's illegal to feed alcohol to a moose and in Oklahoma , you're subject to fines and/or imprisonment for making "ugly faces" at dogs.

The electric chair was invented by a dentist.

The average person walks the equivalent of twice around the world in a lifetime.

Oak trees do not produce acorns until they are about 50 years old.

It is physically impossible for you to lick your elbow.

Like fingerprints, everyone's tongue print is different.

Your heart beats over 100,000 times a day.

It takes approximately 12 hours for food to entirely digest.

A sneeze travels out your mouth at over 100 m.p.h.

Most of the dust particles in your house are dead skin.

There is a company that will (for $14,000) take your ashes and compress them into a synthetic diamond to be set in jewelry for a loved one.

There are more living organisms on the skin of a single human being than there are human beings on the surface of the earth.

The longest bout of hiccups lasted nearly 69 years.

Babies are born without kneecaps. They appear between the ages of 2 and 6.

Men can read smaller print than women. Women can hear better.

Wearing headphones for just an hour will increase the bacteria in your ear by 700 times.

If you sneeze too hard you can fracture a rib. If you try to suppress a sneeze you can rupture a blood vessel in your head or neck and die. If you keep your eyes open by force they can pop out.

A kiss stimulates 29 muscles and chemicals that cause relaxation. Women seem to like light and frequent kisses while men like them more strenuous.

Every time you lick a stamp, you're consuming 1/10 of a calorie.

Our eyes are always the same size from birth, but our nose and ears never stop growing.

The average person falls asleep in seven minutes.

According to Chinese acupuncture, there is a point on the head that you can press to control your appetite. It is located in the hollow just in front of the flap of the ear.

In a recent survey, Americans revealed that banana was their favorite smell.

Almost everyone who reads this will try to lick their elbow. Did you?

    Tuesday, April 23, 2019


    You Don't Want to Miss This! 

    I have told you before about my friend, Tim, who helps me publish my books, manage my blog, does all the interior design work for the Pastoral Center SVG, designed Jack's Coffee Shop as well as helped design the teaching kitchen at Saint Meinrad Seminary and wrote the Daily Bread cookbook for priests. What I have not mentioned before is that he is also an artist. He has just set up a shop on where you can buy prints of his work. Check it out ....

    Sunday, April 21, 2019


    Mary of Magdala came to the tomb early in the morning, while it was still dark.
     Later, Simon Peter and John came to the tomb. None of them understood 
    yet that he had to rise from the dead.
    John 20:1-9 

    Speaking of visiting the cemetery where Jesus was buried, I have a fascination with cemeteries, especially the two in my own country parish of Saint Theresa where I will be buried, the two in Calvary, Kentucky, down around Lebanon, where I used to serve, the Sisters’ cemeteries at the Motherhouses at Nazareth, Springfield and Loretto, Kentucky, as well as the abbey cemetery at St. Meinrad in Indiana. With my new tombstone now in place, I find it even comforting to look down on the very spot where these bones will be buried someday! 

    I am fascinated, not with death, but with those who have lived the Catholic faith and served the church, as I have done these last 75 years. Cemeteries do something for me – several things, in fact. (1) They remind me that life is short so I need to live well while I can. By looking death in the face, it reminds me that death is a fact of life, not only for those who have gone before me, but also for me. I feel that it is good to remind myself to live with the end in mind.  (2) They remind me, as well, that I am part of a large family of faith, that stretches back for two thousand years around the world and over two hundreds of years here in Kentucky. (3) I am reminded of a line from the creed where we say that “we look forward to the resurrection of the dead and the life of the world to come.” We believe that life does not end with the grave, but rather that we continue to live  - that we will rise again someday, just like Christ rose from his grave that first Easter. (4) Believing in the “communion of saints,' it reminds me to pray for those who have died and it reminds me that they are praying for me as well.

    The great Lutheran theologian, Dietrich Bonhoeffer, once said, “The pastor should visit the cemetery as often as he is able. This is wholesome for him personally, for his preaching, for his spiritual care and also for his theology.” Bonhoeffer was right. When I walk through these cemeteries and view the names on the gravestones, I experience a peaceful, reassuring calmness.

    I recommend this practice to any of you, especially when you are depressed or down about something.  Looking death in the eye makes us realize how short and precious life is, makes us put our problems in perspective and restores our peace of mind so that we can get back to living while we can.  It reminds us that we are not alone, that we belong to a huge family of faith and that we will be remembered after we die, even by people who have never met us.

    There are several things that stand out when we read about the disciples’ visit to the cemetery shortly after the tragic death of Jesus.  First of all, it was a woman disciple who first brought the news about the empty tomb to the men disciples. Obviously, no one among them was expecting a resurrection. Even those who knew Jesus, saw him die and viewed his empty tomb, were slow in coming to faith.  Seeing that the tomb was empty, Mary Magdalen immediately concluded that the body had been snatched. The youngest apostle, John, looked in but was too scared to go into the tomb. The impulsive Peter, wanting to get to the bottom of things, was the first to enter the tomb. John was the first to believe, and only gradually, over several days, did the others come to believe. 

    If the resurrection of the body was hard to believe, even for those who were there, what about us? Are we not, also, slow in coming to faith? As Jesus said about us to the doubting apostle, Thomas, in his demand for proof, “Have you come to believe because you have seen me? Blessed are those who have not seen and have believed.”

    With the Church, we believe in “the resurrection of the body.”  Saint Thomas Aquinas, the great theologian, said that without the body, the human soul is incomplete. We need our bodies to be who we are, to have memories and relationships, to express our unique personalities. Our risen bodies will not be our limited bodies, but fully realized bodies, glorified bodies. Our risen bodies might exhibit some properties of our physical body, but without its limits. Like the risen Lord, who seemed to pass through doors but was also able to be recognized, our bodies will be our bodies, only in a glorified state. Frankly, I am still hoping to trade this old one in for an upgraded version!!!!

    If you are finding it hard to comprehend what I am trying to say, don't worry about it. It really cannot be described in normal language. Frankly, I don’t spend a whole lot of time trying to logically figure all this out. I am simply comforted by the words of Saint Paul, “Eye has not seen, nor ears heard, nor has it even dawned on human beings, the great things God has in store for those who love him.”  I can live with that! I can still believe while I wait for an answer to all my questions! 

    So on this Easter morning, let us not just remember the resurrection of Jesus as a historical event, but let us remember it with our own end in mind. Let us look forward to our own resurrections - whatever that reality may look like.  All I know and believe, really, is that it is going to be wonderful.  Let us, in the meantime, remain connected to Christ as we “wait in joyful hope” for that great and glorious day.