The Rights of Evil – Part 7.


God’s Biological Society – The Family

The first component, and an obstacle to the secularist goal, is the authority of the genetic family.  There is no continuation of the species of man without procreation.  As such, it is the physical center of humanity and has been such since man climbed out of the mud of the bog.  With such an understanding, all cultures in the past have naturally delegated authority to the family; first to the father and mother, second to the community, third to the state, and so on.  It had always been a fundamental practice that generated opportunity and stability for all, and despite its frequent inequities due to the abuse of authority by self-centered individuals and groups – a condition that exits in all authorities across all philosophies – it is a proven model.  It works because that is God’s creative plan and it is His genetic formula for created man.

Secular man sees another model; one not based upon genetics, but rather upon desires.  The first is stable and evolves at a pace that society bears easily and without notice.  The second is continually disruptive by nature for it gives preference to immediate and temporal desires, and redistributes resources, which had been acquired through the stability of the family structure, to those who have not had to work for those resources.  The secularist, in pursuit of providing resources for the impulse of feelings and desires, has to separate work from reward.  Individuals and groups that had spent their lives working for what they thought was theirs, are left to watch those things of value taken away from them and given to another individual or group so that a new desire may flourish.  Institutions that struggled for generations in order to reach the higher echelons of quality provisions for specific purposes have found their successful programs sacked and redefined by those who merely desired what that institution earned and offered, and saw no reason why they should have to meet the very requirements that made the institution desirable to them to begin with.  The secularist creed is, “Take what you choose not to earn or accomplish”. Continue reading The Rights of Evil – Part 7.

One’s True Pilgrimage

Pilgrimage 1Not Where I Want to Be

As I start this post early in the morning this past Saturday, on the eleventh of May, I should be sitting in my reclining chair on a high-speed train to Pamplona, where I will board the 4:00pm bus for Roncesvalles, a monastery town on the western slope of the Pyrenees Mountains.  Instead I am sitting in my home office in Naples, Florida; hobbled by bandages wrapping my right arm and leg.

The tenth of May, was my take-off date for Spain, and a pilgrimage to the bones of St. James.  It was to be the beginning of my walk on the Camino de Santiago de Compostela.  I was to fly to Philadelphia in the afternoon and catch another flight to Madrid early that evening.  By 8:25am, the next morning, I would land in Madrid, Spain, where my goal was to get to the Puerta de Atocha Train Station quick enough to catch the train to Pamplona. From there Roncesvalles and then over the Pyrenees to St. Jean Pied de Port in France; my starting point for the Camino pilgrimage.  None of this was to be – at least not yet – in my “compostela”(constellation).  My stuffed backpack was set out on the dining room table, my collapsible walking sticks nearby, euros were crammed into an envelope along with a charge card or two, and I wasn’t around to carry any of it.  No. for me, the tenth of May was my day to be lying in a hospital bed at the Kendall Regional Hospital Burn Unit.  The night before had brought me much adventure, a lot of pain, a few revelations, a large dose of peace-of-mind, and a certainty of purpose in life as God has set out before me. Continue reading One’s True Pilgrimage

My Road to the Catholic Faith


“Without individuals, nothing happens; without institutions, nothing survives.”  Talleyrand

This quote cracked some eggs in my budding life as a new Christian and missionary. (As a side, it is of some humor to me that this quote came from the mouth of a man of royal background, priestly inclination, a diplomat at heart, a Prime Minister of France, a womanizer, a voluptuary, and the “lame devil”.)

By Who’s Authority

My first three years at New Hope Ministries were spent in praise & worship of a God whose call finally overcame all of the obstacles I had placed between us.  During that time a theological education became the order of process to shape my faith, and the challenging world of missionary and evangelical efforts became my realization of what real faith produces; work.  In this process I slowly discovered that I was increasingly on an entrepreneurial path – more of a voluntary association with New Hope Ministries, or a sodality as the Catholic Church would call it – rather than in union with the church; a union where the Pastor and church administration was clearly involved, and any volunteer role was clearly defined as secondary and not primary to the mission’s survival.  In truth, though, my church engaged little through its own efforts to pursue mission and evangelical work that had to be reached by walking out the doors of the church.  “Efforts” were the enterprise of individuals and small groups that defined needs, initiated plans, and executed activities independent of, but with the sanction from the church administration.  If I, or some other volunteer, did not do “it”, “it” would not get done.  In a word, I found this “depressing” and somehow lacking in what my theological education was shouting at me. Continue reading My Road to the Catholic Faith

Landscape & Laundry

L&L Snapshot 1 EditI found myself this recent Easter Vigil in my pew, going through the final rite of coming into full communion with the Roman Catholic Church.  For Kathryn and I, this has been a journey that has taken four years to accomplish, and we cannot express the rest we now have in our Lord God.  And during that evening’s Mass, a few verses of Paul’s epistle to the Romans was read – Romans 6:3-11.  In those verses I was reunited with a single verse that has meant so much to me.

Romans 6:5

For if we have been united with Him in a death like His, we will certainly also be united with Him in a resurrection like His.

Perhaps a year ago, I came across a short video, directed by Geza M. Toth, for KEDD Animation Studio.  At that time I was profoundly struck by the film for both its surreality, and by an intense spiritual message that I discerned was being told behind the scenes.  Now, I have no idea what Mr. Toth was attempting to project in his film, but I certainly sensed a meaning that needed to be coaxed from the darkness of the film.

The video resided in my mind for several months without interpretation on my part, as I could not quite bring what was of the spiritual in the film into a focus that we, in the physical, could use to some good purpose.  And then one day the focus was simply handed to me; as a cautionary poem of man’s inability to discern that path that is so well lit by God’s grace, and a love so infinite and constant that He would suffer and die on a cross for us all; through Jesus Christ.

I sat, He wrote.  I hope you enjoy my adaptation of a brilliant piece of work by Mr. Toth, and find some contemplation that might strengthen your covenant with God.

God Bless – Reese

The Two Bicyclists

Bicyclist 1

Two weeks back, I had an interesting experience while walking home from work.

It produced a question that I still work about without full resolution, and so I hand it to my readers for their own use.

I was crossing the Gordon River bridge; leaving downtown Naples.  The bridge has a walkway, perhaps four feet wide, and with a series of light posts that interrupt the walkway; producing a narrow throat where the posts are located.  It makes passing one another a bit of a gamble and a game, as you attempt to predict speed and intent of a person coming from the other direction.  Do you slow down, speed up, step to the side, go first, go second.  These are all choices one makes as they attempt to accommodate other foot and bicycle traffic.  We take these kinds of conditions with normalcy, think little of them, and routinely include them in most of our travels.  Just try walking in a shopping mall without your mind constantly engaging in physics and math calculations, as well as psychological predictions and assertions.U.S. 41 - Google Maps

Now I was nearing the end of the bridge.  Before me were two more narrow throats in the walkway where light posts were located.  And coming towards me were two bicyclists.  I could easily see that we would meet at the last light post.  As one bicyclist was close behind the other, I assumed them as traveling companions.

My attention came to the first bicyclist and our eyes and focus of thought came together as we approached one another.  We both had the same conclusion and physical reaction; to yield to the other.  I stepped to my right and slowed my walk with the anticipation that both bicyclists would pass by.  The first bicyclist quickly slowed and came to a stop to his left with the anticipation that I would continue and pass by.  We were in one thought and purpose; to yield to the other in respect and safety.  Our eyes acknowledged each other for working as one body, and as he had made the greater effort to yield in stopping his bicycle, I proceeded with renewed pace.

What neither of us calculated at that moment was the action of the second bicyclist.  I thought they were together, so the second bicyclist would likewise yield.  The first bicyclist never knew there was another behind him.  They were not together, and the second bicyclist continued his pace; passing the first and coming my way.

As quickly as the first bicyclist and I came to an agreement of yield, I found that the second bicyclist and I likewise came to an agreement; that we were to pass one another without impeding our individual speeds.  We kept our eyes upon each other, he smoothly passed on my right, and we acknowledged each other for working as one body in respect and safety.

As I came off the bridge, the first bicyclist was just beginning to set himself back on his bike.  He was clearly irritated with something that had just taken place, and he sneered out, “Can you believe that guy?!”

The Question

Of the two bicyclists, who best demonstrated Christian ideals of love for another?

Enjoy the brain tease, and God Bless – Reese