27 November 2008

The Rosary in Space and Time by Ruth Rees

For the past couple of days I have been reading a very good book, The Rosary in Space and Time by Ruth Rees. I have greatly enjoyed this book and cannot recommend it enough. I am hardly a scholar, theologian or rocket scientist. However, my interests include a constant interest in learning new things, a love of the Rosary and a passion for the wonder of Space. It has been my privilege to meet several of the incredible men who have been in space and to the Moon. They are truly inspiring.

I was once asked by where I was spiritually, did I have a religion and how was I with it. A good question for anyone. A good question to ask yourself on a regular basis, actually. At the time, I was reading an issue of Astronomy. There was a picture of an incredible nebula on the cover. I held it up and told my friend, look at this. It’s gorgeous. It is also immense. I cannot wrap my head around this unbelievable formation of dust, gas and fire. I cannot wrap my head around the wonder of a lovely nebula. I cannot wrap my head around the fact that there are millions of them, that each contains millions of stars and around each star is the possibility of planetary systems. How on earth can I begin to wrap my head around the consciousness, intelligence, God that not only created this incredible spacescape but conceived it in the beginning.

Many people think I’m just nuts. They are probably right but that is beside the point. It is just that, in a world full of people who think they have all the answers, who are certain that they can tell me what God wants, I cannot begin to say that I have a clue.

There are days when I wish I had the simple, wonderful, complete and sure faith of a child. Everything happens because God said so. I tripped over a stick, hallelujah. To sing Jesus Loves me and allow that to be the end all and be all of my faith would be so easy and so simple. And for some people, that is all they need. For myself, there are always questions. Not because I doubt but because there are more answers to questions I will ever even think to ask. I don’t even know what I don’t know.

I have always felt like Jesus is the most recent of God’s visitations to this Earth. I am certain he has come before and will come again. God watches us and God sees us and He teaches us. In every generation, we learn more. As children, we reach just a little further each day (or generation) the more we learn, the more we ask. The more we ask, the more God shows us. The more He shows us, the more we reach. And on goes the circle.

I know there are many groups, populations and religions that prefer the simple life. They keep their lives to singing Jesus Loves Me and have no wish to go further. And that’s OK. It works for them. And it works for a lot of Preacher’s, Priests, Imams and Rabbis.

But there are far more who continue to ask, learn, teach, search and discover. And each new discovery leads to more questions. Each new question leads to new growth. And in all of it, in all of these questions, the most intelligent and the most simplistic, there is always the underlying question. Why? To that, we may never have an answer. And that’s OK.

Of all the creatures on this earth, Humans think beyond their next meal, their shelter, their own lives and reproduction. God gave us a Questioning and discerning mind. I believe he WANTS us to learn. He wants us to strive. We will make mistakes. It is from mistakes that we learn the most.

Ms. Rees equates the relative obscurity of Galilee as the home of Jesus and the origin of our Salvation with the relative obscurity of our place in the Milky Way and a place of Origin for Humans of Earth to carry our faith. What if we are simply one of the MANY places where Christ has visited? If there are millions of civilizations in the universe, would God, who created them ALL, not have shown himself there as well? perhaps in different forms, perhaps with different outcomes, but surely, he has been there, too.

But, then again, perhaps it all does begin here. If it does, can we handle the responsibility? Are we ready to take it on? Do we want to? Or should we keep God all to ourselves? Many questions. The thing God gives us are questions. And each answer brings more questions. The ability to ask those questions and the desire to answer them is, in my opinion, one of the greatest gifts God ever gave us.

23 November 2008

Rosaries In the Hands of Heroes

Those who read this humble blog know that there are few on this earth that I respect more than the Soldier. They are who keep us safe and they are who we all should thank. Among those wonderful heroes in uniform is a personal Hero of mine, Michael. Michael has served in the Navy and now in the Army. He is 50 years old and has built his life of his own will and God’s Grace. Michael is now and was previously, a Body Building Champion.

In my own weakness, Michael is one of my inspirations. The difficulties he has overcome, I will not enumerate here. Those are his own stories to tell. I will tell you that his is a great victory for himself and his God.

I am extremely proud to call Michael my Friend.

I have recently begun asking those who carry my Rosaries, those I can find, to send me pictures of my Rosaries in their hands. To me, hands tell me everything I need to know about a person. Their character, their strength, their personality. Michael’s, appropriately, was the first picture I have received and I will post it here. I hope to add many more to this page. For now, know that Michael symbolizes all that is good in this country, all that can be done, all the potential there is for any person who wants to build a life. Michael is my ultimate example.

Have a look at the wonderful picture Michael has sent me. You will understand in an instant why my mission is to make as many Rosaries for Soldiers as I can. This picture says it all.