Archive for November, 2019

“Don’t Mess With Texas!”

That famous phrase is actually a double entendre. For one thing, it’s a caution against littering. Anyone who has traveled the vast state of Texas has seen the signs noting the heavy fines for throwing trash on the miles and miles of roads and highways.

But it’s also a reminder that Texans are a tough, independent lot, not to be messed with.

As a Texan with roots pre-dating the fall of the Alamo, I can assure you that rural Texas landowners covet their properties –their farms, their ranches and their thousands upon thousands of old country churches and cemeteries.

The Trump administration keeps learning this cultural fact as it keeps meeting legal resistance from Texans who refuse to let Trump steamroll them and their sacred properties.

It’s a sad thing that Trump holds nothing in this world sacred except Dollar Almighty. And more sad that people like the good Texan and his kith and kin featured in this video are having to fight like hell to preserve a historic United Methodist Church chapel and cemetery that they hold so sacred.

(Once you’ve viewed the video, here’s another horror story from two years ago regarding the wall.) https://jitterbuggingforjesus.com/2017/08/04/trump-vs-land-owners-ugly-wall-news/

Read Full Post »

God created the good, green Earth, which some are intent on destroying.

I wish we’d get over this lunatical notion that we need to explore Mars because humankind is going to need it to re-locate some day.

Now that I got that off my chest…

I’m sharing this Ute Native American poem for the simple reason that I love poetry and memorize a lot of it and I liked this so much that I memorized it a few years ago.

And sharing because every day is Earth Day, or should be.

EARTH teach me stillness
As the grasses are stilled with light.

And sharing because I’m so distressed by the current administration doing everything in its power to steamroll American Natives and their sacred lands.

While, at the same time, it is thoroughly advancing the destruction of American land and water sources from coast to coast.

So I need the beauty and wisdom of these words to help me maintain my spiritual equilibrium.

And with no further ado … I invite you to reflect on these loving words, gentle reader:

EARTH teach me stillness
As the grasses are stilled with light.
EARTH teach me suffering
As old stones suffer with memory.
EARTH teach me humility
As blossoms are humble with beginning.
EARTH teach me caring
As the mother who secures her young.

EARTH teach me courage
As the tree which stands all alone.
EARTH teach me limitation
As the ant who crawls on the ground.
EARTH teach me freedom
As the eagle who soars in the sky.
EARTH teach me resignation
As the leaves which die in the fall.

EARTH teach me regeneration
As the seed which rises in spring.
EARTH teach me to forget myself
As melted snow forgets its life.
EARTH teach me to remember kindness
As dry fields weep with rain.

~ from the poetry of the Ute Native American Indians

Read Full Post »

Meanwhile, down on the U.S./Mexico border…

Art by Angel Valdez for The Houston Catholic Worker at http://www.cjd.org

The Trump administration–with all its Christians who never let us forget how Christian they are–continues its policy of cruelty toward poor, vulnerable, so-called “invaders.”

I still hear this all it time from conservatives: Parroting Trump, they say we’re being “invaded” by people from south of the U.S. border. They love that Trump is fighting to stop this invasion.

I point out to them that invaders are almost always heavily armed because they seek to conquer a land and its people by force. The desperate people seeking asylum at our borders are unarmed men, women and children who couldn’t conquer America if they wanted to.

Which they don’t.

They hardly qualify as “invaders.”

Art by Bro. Mickey McGrath, an Oblate of St. Francis De Sales, artist, author, and speaker. More on him at http://www.bromickeymcgrath.com and http://www.embracedbygod.org

It’s interesting the responses I hear from those conservatives. They typically pivot to the argument that we are being invaded by violent, heavily armed drug smugglers. Which is an entirely different issue from the issue of poor and vulnerable people fleeing violent, heavily armed drug gangs in their home countries.

I’ve said it often and will say it again: American conservatives–especially those who purport to be Jesus-loving, God-fearing Christians–simply have no defense for the Trump administration’s endless cruelty toward asylum seekers.

* * *

The wonderful Shalem Institute for Spiritual Formation shared an article about St. Peter Claver this morning on its Facebook page. The Spanish Jesuit devoted most of his life ministering to thousands of African slaves who arrived every year at the port city where he lived in the 16th century.

Mary van Balen, a fine spiritual writer who penned the Shalem Institute article, writes:

    As I thought of Peter Claver’s instinctive action to first alleviate human suffering, the plight of refugees at our Southern border came to mind. They come mostly from Central and South America, fleeing unspeakable violence, poverty, and fear for their lives. How are they met?

    I spoke with Sister Barbara Kane, a member of the Dominican Sisters of Peace in Columbus, Ohio. She and others in her community have traveled to El Paso to serve as they could.

    She spoke of refugees’ long waits in enclosed areas (some liken them to cages) until they have their Credible Fear Hearing (when the refugee states what has driven them to seek asylum). “The enclosures have concrete floors, are kept at 60 degrees, and are so small people are packed together, unable to lie down to sleep,” Sr. Barbara said. People receive little food. Yet, despite the great needs, no one is allowed inside to help.

Thank God we still have many American Christians, clergy and lay alike, whose “instinctive actions” are to do whatever they can to alleviate the suffering that is still being compounded by the Trump administration while impeachment is in all the news.

You can read van Balen’s entire article, which I commend to you, dear readers, here.

Read Full Post »

God is packing his bags for Cancun. Let me explain why.

The godly woman in the video above, the fabulously wealthy evangelical preacher Paula White–who has the kind of hair and figure that has always appealed to Donald J. Trump–is now employed by Donald J. Trump in the White House, which is now without question The Christian People’s House.

As far as I can tell, her job description is simply to protect God.

And probably to provide the kind of Christian moral training that the president and First Lady undoubtedly want their young son Baron to receive from God’s most favored evangelical preacher.

And to always stand real close to the Chosen One and give him lots of hugs throughout the working day and night if you know what I mean and I think you do.

The candidate Donald J. Trump once told an audience of evangelicals in a campaign appearance–I am not making this up–that “You don’t have to worry about God anymore. I’m going to protect God for you.”

God has been able to relax ever since Trump moved into the Christian People’s House.

And now, with his favorite blonde Paula White a few doors down from The Chosen One Donald Trump–she whom God has sprinkled with glitter as shiny as all the gold she has made off of poor, gullible people–God can go down to Cancun and chill.

So relax, America. You’re in Paula’s hands.

Paula White, whom God has sprinkled with special, holy glitter.

Read Full Post »