Sunday, September 21, 2014

Clear


Nice, clear, smog-free Sunday morning over downtown Dallas. 

Saturday, September 20, 2014

Goodbyes



Yesterday we said our final goodbyes to my grandmother. She was a true example of how to live out your faith, not with mere words but with action. Some of the flowers from her service were taken to a local nursing home and given to some of the residents. She would have liked that. 

Friday, September 19, 2014

Thursday, September 18, 2014

Blame Mel


Apparently, this is what is showing on all the channels in Scotland today. So if Scotland votes for independence...blame Mel Gibson. 

Freedom!

Wednesday, September 17, 2014

Liturgists Podcast


One of my favorite singer/songwriter/musician/creators, Michael Gungor, recently began recording a podcast. The Liturgists Podcast stated goal is to be a place where science, art and religion collide. The podcast is hosted by Gungor, "Science" Mike McHargue and Lissa Paino. Great stuff. Check it out HERE.


Tuesday, September 16, 2014

Ban

I will not post his picture here. Adrian Peterson should be banned from playing football. I was once a big fan of his. I am a Sooner fan. But I hope he never shows his face in Norman again. 

If there was a video of Peterson beating his child, he would never play again in the NFL. 

Monday, September 15, 2014

Smartphone Excess



These new smartphones have gotten ridiculous. That won't fit in your pocket. 

Sunday, September 14, 2014

The Central Triangle


This is a map of a small section of East Dallas south of White Rock Lake. That orange line going east-west along the bottom is I-30. That red circle is the church where I attend. Within that red triangle there are no other churches. That  tan square, dead center, is an elementary school where 97% of the students are economically disadvantaged. 44% are labeled at-risk. Looks like we got some people to help, prayers to pray, and things to do. 

Saturday, September 13, 2014

My Grandmother


My Grandmother passed away very early this morning. This photo was taken a month ago, the last time we saw her. I loved and admired her greatly. She was someone who actually put action to her faith. When she was able, she visited shut-ins, delivered flowers to those in nursing homes and convinced numerous businesses to give her free stuff to donate to those living alone in care facilities. 

I will miss her terribly. I love her so much. Goodbye Grandma. You fought the good fight. You deserve some rest. 

Friday, September 12, 2014

Visça Catalunya!



In the United States, September 11th is a day of remembrance for those who lost their lives in the terrible terrorist attacks on the World Trade Center and Pentagon. That day was horrific and I still shudder at the images from that morning. Selfishly, I don't like to dwell on that day because it was an incredibly depressing moment in our nation's history. However, I don't believe we should ever forget those who lost their lives both as victims and as heroes, sacrificing their lives in the attempt to rescue others.

In Catalunya, September 11th has been a day of remembrance for three centuries. Yesterday marked the 300th anniversary of the Catalan surrender to Spanish forces, ending Catalan independence. Every year, on September 11th, hundreds of thousands of Catalans take to the streets to protest Spanish rule and celebrate their culture. Spanish rule has rarely been kind to Barcelona and Catalunya. The Franco years were particularly harsh. 

A slight majority of Catalans favor independence from Spain. As opposed to the Basques, their appeals for independence have rarely turned violent. They have a much greater case for independence than the Scots. Catalunya has a distinct language, cultural tradition, and history of political autonomy. Catalunya was one of the very first regions in Europe to embrace democracy...five hundred years ago! 

Catalan independence also makes much more pragmatic sense than for Scotland. Catalunya is the wealthiest region of Spain. Their economy represents over 1/5th of the Spanish economy. They have a major port city on the Mediterranean. They have a vibrant industrial and manufacturing sector. They have a massive service economy. Tourism is also huge in the region. Catalunya is blessed with agricultural and mineral wealth. The Catalan work ethic and spirit of entrepreneurship is legendary. If anything, Spain has always been a drain on Catalunya, holding them back from greater prosperity. Catalunya has propped up Spain for decades. 

I have an emotional tie to Barcelona and Catalunya. I visited the region as a senior in college and returned to live there for a year after graduation. That year was one of the most important and formative experiences of my life. I maintain regular contact with my friends there and keep up with the news of the area. I root and support FC Barcelona...which as any Catalan can tell you, is more that just about rooting for a soccer team. FCB represents the cultural heritage of Catalunya. 

So yesterday, in solidarity with my friends who paraded in the streets, I put on the Catalan colors. Visça Catalunya!

Last Post Translated.

Here the Catalan translation of my last post:

Als Estats Units, 11 de setembre és un dia de record per a aquells que van perdre la vida en els atacs terroristes terribles contra el World Trade Center i el Pentàgon. Aquest dia va ser horrible i encara s'estremeixen davant les imatges d'aquell matí. Egoistament, no m'agrada posar l'accent en aquest dia perquè era un moment molt depriment en la història de la nostra nació. No obstant això, no crec que hem de mai oblidar els que van perdre les seves vides com a víctimes i herois, sacrificant les seves vides en l'intent de rescatar altres.

A Catalunya, 11 de setembre ha estat un dia en memòria de tres segles. Ahir es va complir el 300 aniversari de la rendició català a les forces espanyoles, posant fi a la independència català. Cada any, el 11 de setembre, centenars de milers de catalans surten als carrers per protestar contra el domini espanyol i celebrar la seva cultura. Domini espanyol poques vegades ha estat amable amb Barcelona i Catalunya. Els anys del franquisme van ser especialment dures.

Una lleugera majoria dels catalans a favor de la independència d'Espanya. A diferència dels bascos, les seves crides a la independència que poques vegades s'han tornat violents. Tenen un major cas d'independència dels escocesos. Catalunya té una llengua diferent, la tradició cultural i la història de l'autonomia política. Catalunya va ser una de les primeres regions a Europa a abraçar la democràcia ... fa cinc-cents anys!

Independència català també sentit molt més pragmàtic que per a Escòcia. Catalunya és la regió més rica d'Espanya. La seva economia representa més de 1/5 de l'economia espanyola. Tenen una important ciutat portuària a la Mediterrània. Tenen un sector industrial i manufacturer vibrant. Tenen una economia de serveis massiva. El turisme també és molt important a la regió. Catalunya ha estat beneït amb la riquesa agrícola i mineral. L'ètica de treball català i l'esperit de la iniciativa empresarial és llegendària. En tot cas, Espanya sempre ha estat una càrrega per a Catalunya, la celebració de tornada d'una major prosperitat. Catalunya ha donat suport Espanya durant dècades.

Tinc un llaç emocional a Barcelona i Catalunya. He visitat la regió en el seu últim any a la universitat i vaig tornar a viure-hi durant un any després de la graduació. Aquest any va ser una de les experiències més importants i formatius de la meva vida. Mantinc un contacte regular amb els meus amics allà i segueixo amb les notícies de la zona. Arrelament i suport del FC Barcelona ... que com qualsevol català pot dir, és més que només d'arrelament per a un equip de futbol. FCB representa el patrimoni cultural de Catalunya.

Així que ahir, en solidaritat amb els meus amics que van desfilar en els carrers, em poso els colors catalans. Visca Catalunya!