Lenten Gameplan, 2019

posted by Mike on March 6th, 2019

Fasting: At last, Facebook has become a miserable enough experience that it doesn’t feel like a sacrifice to give it up. So the likely candidates this year are the old classics: giving up (some) sugar, giving up caffeine, and so on. There are so many fasting fads these days, I might play around with a few, more out of curiosity than spiritual discipline.

Prayer: This year, for the first time in a long time, I’m already doing plenty of praying by myself and with my various communities. My plan is to maintain these, in Lenten form, but not add much extra work.

Reading List: Kugel’s How to Read the Bible (because why not provoke a crisis of faith during Lent?), Hart’s weird New Testament translation (at least the Gospel of John, more if it seems helpful), the Catechism (spread out at around 20 pages per Lenten day, stopping at the nearest chapter/article/section break), and Dorothy Day’s diaries (stopping each day when I’m as inspired or discouraged as I need to be). Lent is 6½ weeks, so that feels like plenty of reading to me. (Looking at the stack, I notice that a bonus Lenten sacrifice may end up being “carrying heavy books.”) In the unlikely event I need to fill more time with reading, I have ebooks of St. Thérèse, Girard’s I See Satan Fall Like Lightning, Spitzer’s How to Find True Happiness, and Pilgrim’s Progress at hand. This might be the perfect Lent to include some books or films on clergy sex abuse, but I am already reading tons on that, believe me.

Scent List: Zoologist’s perfume “Bat,” which Luca Turin observes is built around geosmin, the chemical odor of wet dirt and beets. Maybe the closest thing you’re going to get to ashes, but not incense-y, but not bad. Really only something I’m using on Ash Wednesday and Good Friday.

Lent is not a self-help guide, but about entering Paschal Mystery:

The purpose of Lent, therefore, is a microcosm of the life and worldview of the Christian believer. Knowing themselves to be the sons and daughters of the Resurrection, everything they think, feel, and do is placed in the light and hope of eternity. This gives the disciple of Jesus Christ the strength to forgive an enemy, control their sexual passions, suffer patiently, and selflessly serve others. When the Resurrection is lived and heaven is seen as a real possibility for the righteous, then everything is worth it and everything becomes ordered to it.

posted by Mike in Books, Fasting, Lent | on March 6th, 2019 | Permanent link | No Comments »

Affordable Housing in Worcester (508 #324 w/Eleanor Gilmore)

posted by Mike on March 2nd, 2019

508 is a show about Worcester. This week, we talk with Worcester urbanist Eleanor Gilmore about problems and solutions around affordable housing and gentrification in Worcester.

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posted by Mike in 508: A Show about Worcester, Worcester | on March 2nd, 2019 | Permanent link | No Comments »

Much-Maligned (508 #323)

posted by Mike on February 23rd, 2019

508 is a show about Worcester. This week, we discuss getting off campus, recycling, the Research Bureau [PDF], electricity aggregation, economic development as municipal procurement, clergy abuse, the cost of living, and Universal Basic Income.

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posted by Mike in 508: A Show about Worcester, Worcester | on February 23rd, 2019 | Permanent link | 2 Comments »

This week’s notes on the Catholic clergy abuse crisis

posted by Mike on February 17th, 2019

Here’s a summary I wrote for this week’s radio show that I thought I’d post here.

This week we are seeing a historic meeting on clergy sex abuse, including some Worcester participants; expanded rights for victims of abuse; financial difficulties in the Diocese of Worcester; and even some relevant anecdotes from my own life as a faithful Catholic.
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posted by Mike in Catholic Worker movement, Religion, Worcester | on February 17th, 2019 | Permanent link | No Comments »

Amanda Kidd Schall (508 #322)

posted by Mike on February 17th, 2019

508 is a show about Worcester. This week, we interview Amanda Kidd Schall of the Worcester Arts Council, master picture framer at Framed in Tatnuck, sometime Clark University art professor, visual artist, and long-time Worcesterite. Topics include the Worcester arts scene, local funding, great art in Worcester, recent news from the Catholic clergy abuse crisis, money laundering in contemporary art, John Wick, and Hamlet.

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posted by Mike in 508: A Show about Worcester, Worcester | on February 17th, 2019 | Permanent link | No Comments »

Unwooable (508 #321 b/w #320)

posted by Mike on February 9th, 2019

508 is a show about Worcester. This week, we talk about Conan O’Brien, policy choices in a post-woo society, and clear-bag recycling. The audio version of the show also includes a previously-unreleased radio episode from late 2018 on municipal finances.

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posted by Mike in 508: A Show about Worcester, Worcester | on February 9th, 2019 | Permanent link | No Comments »

Václav

posted by Kaihsu Tai on January 2nd, 2019

A recent sermon on the carol Good King Wenceslas reminded me of this text of mine six years ago:

Quando dou comida aos pobres, chamam-me de santo. Quando pergunto por que eles são pobres, chamam-me de comunista.

When I give food to the poor, they call me a saint. When I ask why they are poor, they call me a communist.

Hélder Câmara

In the carol, King Wenceslas did everything right to be called a saint. The “poor” was “gathering winter fuel” on St Stephen’s. Who would collect the fuel otherwise? When else? – What other time? What’s wrong with collecting fuel? Even if it were wrong, the king’s response was not – “Let’s reorganize the system for energy in the neighbourhood around my palace” but to call his page. All right – a feast might be had by all on St Stephen’s if the entourage made it to yonder the poor’s.

But on the festival of St John the Evangelist, on the Day of the Holy Innocents, the King remains king, the page page, the poor still poor. Only that the King now sleeps sounder on the 27th of December and will not look out. He may then commission the carol writer later in the afternoon for his hagiography. The unnamed “poor man” does not stop collecting winter fuel – even come January.

(New Year’s Day 2013)

posted by Kaihsu Tai in Christmas, Hagiography, Heresy | on January 2nd, 2019 | Permanent link | No Comments »

Credo

posted by Kaihsu Tai on December 14th, 2018

Credo – uskon siihen, että: Taivas ja Maa on täynnä Jumalan kirkkautta. Hänen luomakuntansa avautuu kuin sateenkaaren värit kirkkaasta valosta. Rauhan liiton merkki on monivärinen. – Mekin kaikki saamme osallistua Jumalan ikuiseen liittoon. Kun syömme yhdessä, leipä ja viini tulevat meille lihaksi ja vereksi. Näin osallistumme Kristuksen seurakuntaan. Hoosianna! – Pyhä Henki liikkuu meissä, kun puhumme ja ymmärrämme toistemme kieliä. Näin osallistumme taivaan valtakuntaan.

Credo – I believe: Heaven and Earth are full of the glory of God. God’s creation opens up like the colours of the rainbow coming out of the bright light. The sign of the covenant of peace is multicoloured. – We too can participate in the eternal covenant of God. When we eat together, the bread and the wine become for us flesh and blood. This is how we become part of the fellowship of Christ. Hosanna! – Holy Spirit moves within us when we speak in tongues … when we understand each other’s languages. This is how we get to the realm of heaven.

posted by Kaihsu Tai in Catechism, Finland, Heresy | on December 14th, 2018 | Permanent link | No Comments »

Megan Myers of the Worcester Blades (508 #319)

posted by Mike on December 14th, 2018

508 is a show about Worcester. This week, we talk with Megan Myers, professional hockey player, captain of the Worcester Blades, and assistant coach of the Becker College women’s hockey team, about hockey, the Worcester Ice Center, newly-opened weed stores, Doctor Who, Marvel + Netflix shows, and Liam Neeson.

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posted by Mike in 508: A Show about Worcester, Worcester | on December 14th, 2018 | Permanent link | No Comments »

Unlimited Weed Licenses (508 #318)

posted by Mike on December 11th, 2018

508 is a show about Worcester. This week, we navigate technical difficulties and talk about snow removal, how Worcester can best regulate marijuana, weed as a 2019 campaign issue, Smokey and the Bandit , Taken vs. The Grey, Massachusetts tourism, regulating Christmas tree sales, and the local response to the Catholic clergy abuse scandal.

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posted by Mike in 508: A Show about Worcester, Worcester | on December 11th, 2018 | Permanent link | No Comments »