Over the years, on visits to Mission sites I have picked up nativities. And when people think of you as collecting something, they add to the collection as gifts. As a result, I have beautiful Nativities from Thailand, Zimbabwe, Uganda, Peru, Ecuador, Mexico, and more. Each unique, in size and in the number of pieces. … Continue reading “Christmas”


READINGS: ISA. 7:10-14; Romans 1:1-7; Matthew 1:18-24. Only three days before Christmas and the tension, excitement is everywhere, at least among Christians. But what is it all about? Sometimes in the frantic rush to purchase gifts, prepare holiday meals and dash off Christmas letters it is easy to get overwhelmed and forget what we are … Continue reading “Presence”

Patience and Joy

READINGS:  Isa. 35: 1-6a.10; James 5: 7-10; Matthew 1:2-11 Patience and joy are two themes stressed in today’s readings and, for many, this may seem like a very unlikely combination. What does patience have to do with joy? And, perhaps more to the point, why should we be patient as there are just so many … Continue reading “Patience and Joy”

Immaculate Conception

Hail, full of grace, the Lord is with you  (Luke 1:28)  These words of the Archangel Gabriel to Mary help us know the unique gift Mary was given. As we celebrate the feast of the Immaculate Conception we celebrate Mary, the daughter of St. Joachim and St. Anne, and the mother of our savior Jesus.  We celebrate God’s … Continue reading “Immaculate Conception”

St. Francis Xavier

“In Thee Oh Lord I have put my hope.   Never let me be confounded.” These are the last words of Saint Francis Xavier who, in 1927, was named along with Saint Thérèse of Lisieux, co-patron of all foreign missions. St. Therese Lisieux prayed for missionaries, yet never left her cloister convent. St. Francis Xavier was known … Continue reading “St. Francis Xavier”

But the Individuals

When watching an old episode of Bill Nye on YouTube with my granddaughters, I was struck by how much has developed with understanding and treatment of HIV and AIDS since the episode was made in the 1990s, an episode I remember watching with their mother. When HIV first began infecting humans in the 1970s, scientists … Continue reading “But the Individuals”

Wake Up

Readings: Isa. 2:1-5; Romans 13: 11-14; Matthew 24: 37-44. Once again Advent is upon us- when the Church offers us a time to prepare for the Solemnity of the Nativity of the Lord on December 25 (i.e. Christmas). While for many people this time of year seems frantic with many things to do, for others … Continue reading “Wake Up”

Lowly Toilet

Today is World Toilet Day. And for those of you who think this is on a par with National Toaster Day (which everyone knows is the last Thursday in February1), it is not so! More than half the world’s population (4.2 billion people) live without safely managed sanitation.3 673 million people in the world live … Continue reading “Lowly Toilet”

Road Traffic Victims

Many of us work hard to keep healthy. We exercise, watch our diets, take medications to lower our cholesterol, and watch our blood pressure to help prevent heart attacks. Even though heart attacks can be treated, we know that our lives and health will in many cases depend upon preventing the heart attack in the … Continue reading “Road Traffic Victims”