Sunday, December 28, 2014


Nine of us made up our family on Detroit's east side.
Two sets of twins kept my parents hopping.
There never was a dull day.

Our family was active.

Meaningful activity kept us going.
The Church celebrates family today at Mass.

We need family.
It is the foundation of society.
Family develops as members give, forgive and prays.
The new year gives us pause to ponder family and its role today.
May we never take family for granted.

Monday, December 22, 2014

erry Christmas!

Dear Jesus,
Happy birthday!
This daily connection with You in prayer reduced high blood pressure 43 percent conclude in a study.
What did they expect?
Of course, my believing in you amounts to more than any other gifts I may get, or want.
Of course, following you causes happiness and joy.
You show us the way to live for you are the way, truth and abundant life.
You save us from the grip of sin and death.
You do!
Thank you.
And thanks for Christmas.

Thursday, December 18, 2014

Holiday Hope

Amid a culture of terror and death we need this Christmas.

We do.

With so much carnage of human life, including children, Christmas presses for upholding of human life in and outside of the womb.

It does.

Jesus taught peace and showed it in his life.

Nonviolence was his way.

It needs to be our way as well in a world gone mad.

Will we step up to press for life?

Wednesday, December 10, 2014

Race Relations

Do we need a discussion on race relations?

Clergy met Monday conversing about that while the Hamtramck Police Chief hosted a national documentary crew on police brutality.

Of course it's painful to open this unhealed wound.

Who wants to talk about this festering feeling surrounding this nation?

Leaders need to converse.

That seemed to be among conclusions Monday as clergy met in a Think Tank Theological Reflection session.

Imam Ali Elahi of the Islamic House of Wisdom in Dearborn Heights, MI., mentioned that serious wisdom beyond talk alone is needed now on race relations.

What are the options?

Friday, December 5, 2014

Rite of Anointing and Pastoral Care of the Sick

Father Bogdan Milosz called me the other days requesting help at the 5 pm Mass in Saint Faustina Church in Warren, Michigan tomorrow.

Of course, my reply was positive.

Healing is always a good thing.

It is.

With so much fracture across the globe, we all could use a dose of God's saving grace.

After all, Jesus "went about doing good and healing" (Acts. 10:38).

He did.

At Mass, those prayed with are nourished with the anointing oil of the sick, the Word of God and the Eucharist, for sure.

The healing power of this sacrament resounds across the globe for all to benefit.

Tuesday, December 2, 2014

Hurrying, Busy Pilgrims

With the holidays upon us, hurry, busy, and more seem to be the signature words as pilgrims rush everywhere, it seems. Is busy and hurry the new addiction? Everyone I meet seems to be in a hurry and in a rush. Makes me wonder how my parents raised seven of us when I never heard them say, "I'm too busy." What gives? Are we so busy? In such a rush?

Monday, November 24, 2014

Everybody's Prayerbook

While occupying the corner at Chene and Lafayette with Good News in downtown Detroit,Everybody's Prayerbook,published by O'Neill D. Swanson of Swanson G. Funeral Home, was widely welcomed by pilgrims, the homeless, and others I met. "How may I pray for you?" I'd ask. People would say, "Get me a job." Then, I'd hand them the prayer book. The foreword to it is remarkable. It is among the best definitions I've seen on praying. "Prayer has been described as conversation with God." A Prayer for the Home Visit, we beseech Thee, O Lord, this house, and drive from it all the snares of the enemy. Let Thy holy angels dwell herein, to preserve us in peace; and may Thy blessing be upon us forever, through Jesus Christ Our Lord. Amen. Sharing the ardor of the Gospel is a joy. People engage readily. They are courteous and kind. I love occupying the corner.

Thursday, November 20, 2014

John S. and James L. Knight Foundation informed by engaged communities.

Apply for funding for innovative ideas that advance informed and engaged communities today.

A letter of inquiry is the principal way to apply for funding from Knight Foundation.

Submit an idea.

Apostle Paul: From Jailer to Jailbird

On the inside looking out...of a jail cell in Macomb County's Jail on Groesbeck at Elizabeth and beyond Michigan.

For many there they look within as they look outside the doors for a fresh take on life.

The Kingdom of God is within.


All of us.

In Acts 7:58-28:3 1noted is Paul's travail in jail.

Paul wrote to young church, like the many young in our jails today across the globe and in the USA where it is reported that the most jails exist.

Go figure.

From among the greatest enemies to one of the champions of the early Way, long before we were dubbed Christians with Emperor Constantine organizing the apostles.

Prisoners are among the company of Paul, among other Bible characters.

That's hopeful the inmates tell me on Monday while Mass is celebrated there at about 1 pm.

Wednesday, November 19, 2014


Watch out for the two-legged turkeys and the other turkeys I like to jest by way of holiday greetings these days.

People laugh.

I do also.

In a culture of hurry and impatience, the captured turkeys waiting to be roasted have the harder task, no?

Courtesy and civility of the late and revered legacy of Saint Francis of Assissi, Italy emerges as a reminder for me.

Blessed thanksgiving.

A special day.


Clem Kern and Labor

A conscience of Detroit.

That is the legacy of Monsignor Clement Kern of the Archdiocese of Detroit.

A beloved mentor of mine, he told me once, "Do what your people ask."

So, I do.

Today, near Chene and Lafayette in downtown Detroit where I reside, a visit to a union office
has a few of us talking about a food supplier at a local Catholic university that "get little respect from staff" while their contract is up for renewal.

Earlier, a commercial driver, now a mover for Saint Vincent DePaul told me that his dignity and worth was violated at a downtown Detroit church on Woodward.


One wonders what is going on.

In fact, I was told what a particular Catholic university stands for is currently practicing far from official teaching.

Of course, there are many sides to everyone's stories.

We're all mature enough to know that.

When another gentleman told me that someone was fired at a university when attorneys found out that an employee drove a pregnant mother to the hospital, I perked up.

What a travesty if true.

University officials don't want to be involved.


The conscience of Detroit.

What would Clem Kern say?

Friday, November 14, 2014

The Wisdom of Advent

With Advent season approaching at the end of November, the four-week conscious-raising rite offers Christians the opportunity to prepare for the anniversary of the birth of Jesus the Christ December 25 as they await his Second Coming.

To that end, four sessions with Dominican Sister Suzanne Schreiber, O.P., are set for Dec. 3, 6 pm, Dec. 4, 12 noon, Dec. 9, 9:30 am, and Dec. 10, 6 pm at various homes in the metropolitan-Detroit area.

All are welcome, including inter-generations, cultures and faith traditions, planners said.

For sites and more information, write

Mass Mob

A Catholic Mob Mass Movement.

With 'jump starts' in Buffalo, New York and Cleveland, Ohio, Detroit, Michigan is reviving churches.

 The Mass mob has moved into the phenomenon of the Sunday crowds filling urban churches with suburbanites who may have attended the parish school long before many shuttered.

Our Lady Queen of Apostles in Hamtramck, MI., will be the latest edifice November 16, 2014 at 12 noon when local bishops also move in to preside at the fledgling parishes.

Earlier, Saint Florian Church, also in Hamtramck, bordering Detroit and Highland Park, hosted that Mass Mob.

Nearly 2,000 people participated in the Mass at Saint Florian, according to organizers who encourage worshipper to bring a can of food for the parish's soup kitchens that aid the area hungry daily.

Countless competing activities affect one's committing to regular Sunday attendance that is shrinking even though research surveys show that belief in God is firm.  And, Detroit-area Catholics boast about being most generous to mission collections across the United States and beyond.

Boundaries and respect for human life, marriage and family, and more, are blurred these days even as related to respect for courtesy in the marketplace, and, the "courtliness" that Saint Francis of Assisi, Italy addressed in the 13th century wanes.

Perhaps this lay-run initiative that is organized and managed by the faithful is a clear signal that current church clergy, bishops and other leaders can learn a different model of attracting younger generations to church services.

Holiday Pain

Need to manage holiday pain these days?

Help is on the way November 24 and December 8 from 12 noon until 1 pm with Father Lawence Ventline leading the sessions.

Participants will learn how to calm down, mediate and be equipped with other means to survive the season that tends to be frenetic for many in a culture of 40 millions addicts, research shows.

Write for details.

Tuesday, November 11, 2014


They lined up to serve.

More will follow, for sure.


A grateful nation appreciates vets today.

We do.

We need to respect their role, however one may agree or disagree with war and its misery, mystery and more.

Lukas Ventline, 23, died in Vietnam in '68.

My brother served his nation well.

Today, I remember the 6 foot 3 inch man who was the oldest of the seven of us, including two sets of twins.  I pause.  I ponder.

At Mt. Olivet Cemetery I will honor my brother and all the veterans who gave and served this grateful nation.


Exit Halloween, All Saints, All Souls.

Enter Christmas, New year's, Thanksgiving, Advent, more.

Amazing grace!

Accepting how they all merge now, overlap and create a culture clash even.

Yet, accepting life's flow on its terms seems to be the way to go.

Go with the flow.


Why go against the grain to create boundaries again.

That would be too much like ridding the culture of no fault fault accidents...and....

Boundaries, rules, commandments, and more as in the days of old seem gone in this modern era.

Nevertheless, culture is paying for lack of boundaries, separate seasons, designated days for the holiday and holy days.

Are boundaries still part of family?

Of households?

Even, of myself?

Go figure.

And, let me know, please.


Wednesday, November 5, 2014

Occupying the Corner at Lafayette and Chene Streets, Detroit

Equipped with Good News, I am surprised by my encounters daily at this corner where I minister.

I ask people who frequent the corner how I can be helpful.

Inevitably, they ask me for work.

Focus:HOPE in Detroit is where I point them all the time.

There they can get job training an more that may land them a job.

When I ask them how I can pray for them, they quickly ask for work.

Good Grief

Grieve, but do not grieve as those without hope.

The Good Book suggests that. 

It does.

Like a long tunnel, multiple persons I met this week were dealing with losses that caused grief.

Grief is the natural process one encounters over time to recover.

Fall weather can also affect those experiencing losses in life.

Expression is an antidote to depression.  Staying active, getting rest, eating well and exercising helps one get through the long tunnel.  It does.

If one's grieving goes longer than a year, professional help may be necessary.

Wednesday, October 29, 2014


On my way to Port Austin, Michigan, a deep sadness came over me after visiting a nursing home.

Parkinson's Disease caused one elderly lady to shake during our conversation.  The nurse told of her satisfying life teaching, while her husband told of his "quiet" funeral home.

Memory lapses from some.

Loneliness for some.

All of it got me thinking as I drove to meet a friend in Bad Axe for dinner.

And, that thinking is what my dad always warned me about.

"You think too much," dad would say.

And, I would go play then.

Gone fishing for a day, at least.

That should revive and recreate me.

Always does as I visit my brother before returning home to downtown Detroit.

Friday, October 17, 2014

Think Tank: Theological Reflection on ISIS with Clergy, Specialists

A rigorous discussion of a clergy circle, among others is set for Monday, Oct. 27th from 5 pm in Detroit Unity Temple, hosted by Gregory Guice and Care of the Soul and Companions Counseling All-Faiths Festival.


Invited guests include Bishop Francis Kalabat and/or spokesperson for the Chaldean Catholic Community, and the Arab-American News.

Is Your Teenager Alcohol Attached?

Teen drinking is a challenge but not unbeatable.

Monitor his or her discussion about getting drunk, perhaps.

Does teen know of variety of brands of liquor?

Are teen's friends morphed for the worse?

Does teen get in trouble at work, report absences, is tardy?

Does he or she have trouble staying in stable time span at same job over a period of time?

Friday, October 10, 2014

To Support and Encourage with Pastoral Care, Compassion

That's the aim of a new task I took on today.

Police chaplaincy for Hamtramck, MI.

I do solemnly swear that I will support the Constitution of the United States, and the Constitution of Michigan, and that I will faithfully perform the duties of the office of Police Department Chaplain in and for the City of Hamtramck, County of Wayne, according to the best of my ability, so help me God.

With Police Chief Maxwell Garbarino and City Clerk August R. Gitschlag, I said those words to serve in the name of all interfaith clergy who lift up first responders on the front lines in terribly turbulent times.

God help me.


7 Tuesdays
Oct. 28 - Dec. 9, 2013
5:30-6:45 pm


Hamtramck, MI., Public Library
2360 Caniff
Hamtramck, MI. 48212

Meet-up with other women and men
exploring their story, roots and

High school age and older welcome to register
313 530 2777

Facilitator: Dr. Lawrence M. Ventline

Care of the Soul and Companions Counseling
All-Faiths Festival of Metropolitan Detroit, MI.,


The Psalms of the Hebrew Scriptures
Richard Rohr, OFM
Anne Wilson Sheaf

Saturday, October 4, 2014

Focus:HOPE Walk

Join me for a stroll or a run, Sunday, Oct. 12, 1 pm. Register at

Veterans Meet in Mainstreet Grill First Tuesdays at 7 pm in Detroit

For inspiration and scripture, veterans are welcome to join me in the Grill and Coney Island at 1985 E. Jefferson, Detroit.  For more call me at (313) 530 2777.

Faithfully Yours: Hello Fall, My Old Friend!

I've come to talk with you again.

With thanks to "Bridge Over Troubled Water" singers Simon and Garfunkel.

Fall-like feelings fill, even flood my soul as summer gave way to its sunny rays.

Darker days envelope me as I await the Artist's coloring of the green leaves with orange and gold and brown.

My walk even seems to quicken as I tend to jump over fallen leaves as I aim to let them be.

Fall's procession reminds me of my own feet pressing the ground's soil and soon-to-fall snow that blankets Michigan in whiteness.

I begin to be a friend of autumn's visit only to know inside that summer will have its revenge once more.

My winter wonderland in Detroit this years will unfold as this heart, at least, is gratefully welcoming.

Hello Fall, my old friend!

Fed Up, Fired Up, Detroit City Council Member Mary Sheffield Takes City Hall to the Streets

Detroit, Michigan Mayor Denny Duggan was on hand Friday night as a new initiative, "Occupy the Corner," was launched with City Council Member Mary Sheffield at Lafayette/Chene in zip code 48205 having Detroit's highest  crime rate.

"We're fired up and fed up," hundreds of clergy and resident chanted October 3rd when most City officials were at home other than Council Member Cushionberry who join Sheffield and the Mayor under a tent as rain drizzled amid singing of "Amazing Grace,"  "We Shall Overcome," and more.

Fired up they were.

And, fed up.

Tired of crime in the struggling 'hood" where neighbor seems to have been taken out of the sparsely populated streets in a town that vied with Chicago and New York once upon a time.

After a spirited "bullhorn" session, the crowd walked over to the Martin Luther King Apartments to distribute  service opportunities such as jot hints with Detroit Employment Solutions, Sheffield said the City contracted with to aid the impoverished and drug-infested strip mall where a Spartan store, Family Fair Food, and the Elmwood Park Library is situated alongside a row of unkempt and empty storefronts.

Sheffield was knocking on doors and greeting residents who warmly welcome her literature and zest.

Other such "Occupy the Corner" initiatives are set for a few remaining Fall Fridays at the corner.

The program drew one City Council member from Brooklyn who told the tale of a similar "Occupy the Corner" in New York, along with remarks from a minister who was tapped by Sheffield to wrap up his talk after his admonition to participants to report criminals.

I imagine a tent with my decades-old organization's sandwich-board sign, "All-faiths Festival Care of the Soul" sitting at that corner Sunday for a praise service.

And, I bet the "fired up" Sheffield, among others, will join me as I lead the worshipers.

Pets Prowling Through Edifices Today: The Francis Effect

At 2 pm today at the former St. Edmund Church (now St. Faustina) on Twelve Mile Road, east of Schoenherr in Warren, Michigan, furry pet friends, and more, will be prowling about the edifice, and elsewhere as a blessing of Saint Francis of Assisi, Italy has its enduring effect for pet owners.

Francis was noted for his persistent love of animals when he was told in a vision by God, it is recorded, "to rebuild my church."  At first, the "outside the box" saint who is endeared by many long after his debut in the 12th century, took the vision's message literally and started to build brick by brick allegedly.

With rampant corruption, and more, Francis was asked to bring "fresh air" to the fledgling institution.

I'll be there with my Bichon Frise, "Woofie," for some holy water and a sign of the cross to ask God's blessing upon that fury white creature who is my companion where I reside in Detroit near Jefferson and Joseph Campau, a stone's throw from a bustling and booming downtown now.  Detroit is about to be lifted from bankruptcy, the first of a major urban city.  Kevin Orr, an attorney, was hired to be Motown's Emergency Manager for over a year.

Saturday, September 27, 2014

Under the Trees at Elmwood Park Community, Detroit, Michigan, USA

How can I pray for you?

That's the question asked of my downtown Detroit community.

Quickly they ask me for a job.

And, as fast, I shoot back with Focus:HOPE.  You can secure training and education at, or, (313) 494 4933.

In fact, a Job Seeker's Boot Camp information session is set for Wednesday, Oct. 1st at 11 am with classes starting Oct. 6th at 9:30 am at the iconic social services, civil and human rights organization founded by the late Father William Cunnigham and Eleanor Josaitis, at 1400 Oakman Blvd., Detroit, MI., 48238.

Focus:Hope was founded in the wake of Detroit's riot and unrest among races in 1967.

Be there!

It's a free four-week program to give you the skills to find a job.  Commit to meeting daily from 9:30 am to 1:30 pm, and, to obtaining employment as a resident.

You will be remembered in prayer.  I can already see you working at your new job with help from Focus:Hope.

Wednesday, September 24, 2014

Eager to Love: The Alternative Way of Francis of Assisi By Richard Rohr

A good read.


As usual, Rohr takes the reader to new depths, and then some.

Francis of Assisi is a beloved creature of Italy beyond Padre Pio, among others.

Francis was a paradox.

Prophets are like that.

They are.

Down to earth while reaching toward a better understanding of the world beyond.

The Franciscan friar -- Rohr -- is an ecumenical teacher like Francis who is loved across faith traditions.

Francis was "a master of 'making room for it' and letting go of that which was tired or empty," claims Rohr in this head-turner of a tome.

This alternative way of Francis paves a way and a path to the divine that will deepen and enrich our spiritual lives for sure.

Francis lived on the edge of the inside of both church and society.

He did.

I like that.

Saturday, September 20, 2014

Jordan, Israel Pilgrimage

Join me for an interfaith pilgrimage to Jordan and Israel, May 12-23, 2015.  Register with me and call Linda Bugess at the World of Travel (248) 203 0022.

October 12th Focus:HOPE Walk, Jordan/Israel Pilgrimage, May 12-23, 2015, More

Join me in the Focus:Hope 40th Annual Walk Sunday, October 12, 2014.  Register at

Monday, September 15, 2014

Shot to Hell

I like Jack Lessenberry's columns.

His latest on loving guns merits reprinting.

"We love our goddam guns," Lessenberry notes.

Japan makes it harder to get and keep guns at home, he notes.

We love our guns more than our children, Lessenberry says.

With a little less than the U.S. population, Japan had eight homicides while the U.S. had 9,146  in 2007.

Go figure.

Is anyone else speaking up against guns besides Lessenberry?

Tuesday, September 9, 2014

Life of a Priest

Off to Mass after some quiet prayer time much earlier and a cup of coffee.

Appointments followed at nearby Elmwood Park community, a favorite spot where an hour is spent daily, at least.

One guy in a wheelchair accepted "Everybody's Prayer Book," a highlight for many I visit there.

Some errands follow.

Off to Harrison Township to sort notes in my garage as I prepare to sell my condo in a sleepy sort of town.

After an hour I'm off to Celina's for lunch at Harper and 13 Mile Road in St. Clair Shores.  There, some conversation with multiple people enlivens my day.

A classmate from high school is arriving by 4:30 for dinner and the Tiger ballgame.  I look forward to that after some phone calls are returned.

And, another pause in prayer.

The pace and practice and prayer of a pastor's day.


I'll sleep well as usual.

Monday, September 8, 2014

Swanson Funeral Home's Prayerbook for Everybody

Everybody's Prayer Book.

I like it.

Others seem to also.

Swanson Funeral Home published it.

While I was borrowing a casket for the Second Annual Urban/Suburban Unity Walk recently, I asked O'Neil D. Swanson if I could have some to hand to people I minister with at Larned and Chene near Jefferson in downtown Detroit.

He gave me a couple hundred.

I was impressed that a funeral home would have such a prayer book and begin with a description of prayer.

"Prayer has been described as conversation with God," the book begins.

It also speaks of prayer as an obligation.

It does.

A Morning Offering follows.

In 16 pages, Everybody's Prayer Book, ends with a Prayer for the Home:

Visit, we beseech Thee, O Lord, this house,
and drive from it all the snares of the enemy.
Let Thy Holy Angels dwell herein, to preserve us in peace;
and, may Thy blessing be upon us forever, through Jesus Chrst Our Lord.


Swanson Funeral Home in Detroit has been around a long time.

They seem to realize how daily prayer is key to prosperity, and more.

Saturday, September 6, 2014

Pilgrimage of Jordan and Israel May 12-23, 2015

Join Rabbi Dorit Edut, Chaplain Yvonne Moor with me and my guests accompanying them, for an interfaith tour to Jordan and Israel, May 12-23, 2015. Call The World of Travel and Linda Burgess at (248) 203 0222 or (888) 268 7500 to request registration form.
Complete package, including air is about $3989.00 per person/double occupancy.

Highlights include Jewish/Christian perspectives of the Hebrew and Christian Scriptures, 11 nights in 4 star hotels, a camel ride, baptismal site on Jordan River, Dead Sea, and much more.

Jobs, the Golden Rule and Safety Now, Theme October 7th

"Job, the Golden Rule, and Safety Now," is the theme of an inter-religious dialog, Tuesday, Oct. 7, 2014 from 11:45 am until 1 pm in the Big Boy Restaurant, 7033 E. Jefferson at E. Grand Boulevard, Detroit, with block clubs, Neighborhood Watch, and area business leaders concerned about jobs and dignity and a quality of life for all.  All are welcome.  Care of the Soul and Companions Counseling All-Faiths Festival is host. Call (313) 530 2777 for information.

When I ask people how I may pray for them, immediately they ask me for a job while I converse at the Elmwood Park community at Chene and Jefferson in downtown Detroit where I spend at least a hour daily in street ministry bringing Good News.

Wednesday, September 3, 2014

Addressing Violence by Males with Mentoring, More

The Golden Rule to treat others as one wants to be treated is a common thread in Jewish, Christian and Muslim faith traditions, among others.

It is.


And, with Summer giving way to September and the Fall season, one wonders about whether gunfire will ring out in schoolyards again, too?

God no, we hope and pray.

It would be gratifying to lift up the dignity and worth of all with the Golden Rule of respect if no more balloons and bows of yellow, green and red are needed to mark the sites of shootings by school bullies.

Mind you, it isn't little girls who are doing the gunning.  Females tend to do a better job of bonding with young girls.  They admit pain more readily.  The feminine expresses feeling more fully than guys, it seems to me.

More study about this predicament will help save a society and the soul of this nation.

Could this trend of growing violence by boys be about a quest of meaning and purpose nurtured while lads are young and formative?

I think so.

Youngsters need to be initiated early in life, let alone introduced to the predicaments, mysteries, even miseries of life by their father.

They need to be taught as nowhere else that they are not the center of the world; that pain is real, life is hard; you win some and lose some; you are not in control, you may be passed over at school, at work, by the coach, or, the teacher; one day you will die; and, you life is about something or someone bigger than you -- the young male will not know how to manage pain, loss, alienation and rejection or abandonment.

And, if he cannot deal with his pain, he will abuse power.

He will.

Lads listening to and looking into the eyes of their fathers may help. 

That may change the order of violence that seems more common than blowing one's nose these days.

Initiation and introduction into the mysteries of life can help lessen the violence of schoolyard bullies, and more.

It can.

Fathers, even grandfathers and sons checking into a hotel for a weekend together, or, a hike in the woods together to hear about life's struggles and the realities of the trek through life's limitations and boundaries, including pain, suffering, difficulties and death, may best help male mentoring and bonding for boys who may become bullies otherwise.

Guns and gangs don't have to win.

They don't.

Men and fathers need to mentor and mold their sons.

Tuesday, September 2, 2014

Catholic Church Closures

They're having final Masses and closing their doors.

Too many are being shuttered too often.

When will it stop?

Who is next?

Why not require clergy to bring Good News to the neighborhoods?

Visit neighbors,  ask them what they need prayers for,  and ask how you can be of service to them?

After twelve months,  invite the 'hood to evaluate any growth at the local church.

Think outside the box and grow the church.

Monday, August 25, 2014


The Founders' Bible: The Origin of the Dream of Freedom by David Barton

American stands at the crossroads of human history, once revered and respected throughout the world for its exceptionalism, a gleaming "city on a hill" as a beacon of enduring freedom, now reviled, its influence reduced, teetering on the brink of disaster.

Urban/Suburban Unity Walk Thursday at 6 pm in Warren, MI

Join me to walk from 8 Mile Road and Van Dyke in Warren, MI., Thursday, August 28, 2014, south to Saint Lazarus Serbian Orthodox Cathedral at Outer Drive and Van Dyke at 6 pm.

Each step moves us toward the aim of better regional cooperation and jump starting a conversation on an open would of race in this culture of persistent poverty and increasing crime among Blacks that is greater now that when the Civil Rights Movement emerged.


Saturday, August 23, 2014

Life Is A Long Walk

Life is a trying journey home. 

It can include division, discord and more.

Join Care of the Soul and Companions Counseling Thursday, August 28, 2014 at 6 pm for a symbolic trek at 8 Mile Road and Van Dyke in Warren to Outer Drive/Van Dyke in Detroit.

We'll dedicate the walk to veterans and their families, Cardinal Edmund Szoka who led Catholics in Detroit for decades, and those who speak truth to power.

We'll break bread after the walk at about 7 pm in Saint Lazarus Serbian Orthodox Cathedral with a pot luck meal and program with  Dr. David Jantz addressing drugs and their effects with a response from Diane Shultz.

The public is welcome.

Call (313) 530 2727 for more information.

Thursday, August 21, 2014

Sunday's Sermon: A Homily - Building On Rock: Who Is Jesus the Christ? Mt. 16

Rock Financial.

Climbing rocks.

Rocky water.

Jesus declared he is the rock on which the church is built.

Today,  however, Peter's faith waivers when Jesus tells of his impending suffering, even death on the cross (as some Christians this minute are crucified, buried alive even,  in Iraq!)

Catholics look here in Matthew regarding the Pope, successor of Peter.

After Jesus is said to be "rock," Peter is challenged to build the Church.

He is.


A peg in a sure spot, like Eliakim in Isaiah 22.

Like gravity, ground of all being, and, a fixed place, posture, point forever.

Popes are like all of the community of disciples of Jesus, like Francis, our current pope,  (Romans 11), and, any "who has known the mind of the Lord or who has been his counselor?"

Papacy is a charism, a gift, a favor and blessing to unite Catholics and the world in this universal Church down through history.

Pope Francis fills the office of "rock" passed on by Jesus from Peter.

A good thing, no?


Like a rock.

A solid foundation.

For sure.

Thursday, August 14, 2014

Detroit-area Chaldeans, Others Decry 'Genocide' of Christians in Iraq

Imam H. Al-Husainny, Rabbi Dorit Edut, others and myself will join in solidarity Friday, August 15 at 4 pm in the Karballa Islamic and Educational Center, 15332 W. Warren/Greenfield, Dearborn, 48126, (313) 729 8035 to show our support for Iraq's plight.

All are welcome.

Join us and let us stand together to declare our appreciation for life.

Fr. Ventline
313 530 2777

Tuesday, August 12, 2014

Where is the Outrage?

Where is it?

As children, among others are alienated on a mountain, and others beheaded in Iraq, where is the outrage among Christians, others?

When will we rise to stop the violence?


How can we allow such genocide?

And, do we realize that as Christians are expelled and killed by terrorists, and, Christianity is threatened at home and abroad, as Christianity and religious liberty go, so goes this Nation?

Monday, August 11, 2014

Building Up Marriage and Family Is Theme at People's Community Services Center Sunday

By Fr. Lawrence Ventline, D.Min.

Metro-Detroit area residents are welcome to the People's Community Services Center August 17 to learn some skills to build their marriage and family, according to Common Word Alliance leader, Arif Huskic of Hamtramck.

Starting at 4 pm, Mayor Karen Majewski will greet the guests and their family, that includes child care at the site at 8625 Joseph Campau at Danforth.

Refreshments will be served at 6:15, following nine workshops, including Islamic and Buddhists perspective on marriage and family development, ways to fight fair in love and marriage, teens and parents hearing one another, how to find a job and support your family, how to find the right person for marriage, family addictions and alcohol, and maintaining peace in the neighborhood.

Among those leading workshops are Imams Ali Suliman, Mohamed Almasmari and Mohammad Ali Elahi, Revs. David Kasbow and Dharmananda Mahathera, Rabbi Dorit Edut, and Sister Grace Keane.

The event is free.  For more information, call (313) 999 5483, or e-mail,


One's Own Garden Story and a Good Self Image is Theme of Pastor's Book

By Rev. Lawrence M. Ventline, D.Min.
A Dump, A Garden, And One's Worth: Growing An Interior Life by Lawrence M. Ventline

Life's story begins in a garden of paradise, Genesis notes.  Another garden in John's Gospel across the Kidron Valley that Jesus and his disciples used is mentioned there also.  So does one's trek of twists and turns take one on her or his trail through a garden, or, a dump.

After all, every pilgrim has a story to tell.  It is a tale of joy and sorrow, of desolation and consolation, spiritual ups and downs.

My own trek takes me through a dump-like plot of land where I once lived in Harrison Township, Michigan  that builders once began and did not finish as the Good Book notes. Debris filled the area around boulders of rocks and more.  Bottles were strewn there with other garbage from passers-by. I pulled weeds and re-made the dump with colorful flowers and evergreen trees.  Less debris was left by others then.  After all, it was a garden now.  And, gardens grow greens and more, beyond rubbish.  Like life.  A poor self image begets more of the same until I decide otherwise and make a garden like paradise of life.

Dumps attract debris the same way humans attracts more of the same when their self esteems lacks dignity and worth.

This tale is told of my own family of nine with parents who hailed from farming towns of Port Austin and Cheboygan ,Michigan.  It takes me through Detroit's east side where we were educated at Saint Thomas the Apostle Parish and its grade and high school after attending kindergarten at Lynch Elementary on Palmetto near Van Dyke where I couldn't tie my gym shoes with two loops and was shamed by the teacher who made me face the wall until I learned.

My own demeaned self-image and worth needed shoring up from a boyhood pastor, the late Father Edward Popielarz who taught me to accept myself, others and God in his weekly class in acceptance that I attended in Pontiac where he led the self-help session weekly while I was at St. Mary's College, Orchard Lake.

Later in life, others dumps were explored in Kingston, Jamaica, and, San Salvador in a chapel where the blessed Oscar Romero was murdered at Mass.  Dumps began to turn into fresh gardens over time and turns in life's travails.

I came to accept my story of desolation and consolation from  Father Popielarz' quoting of theologian Paul Tillich's, The Shaking of the Foundations:  "Simply accept the fact that you are accepted."  Accepted by whom?   By God, by golly!  For sure.  When that happened, I experienced grace, favor and blessing.  Everything is transformed and morphs when I accept.  Grace, after all, conquers sin and estrangement, and the abandonment I felt early on in life as my own father seemed estranged from his stepmother who abused him and his siblings.  Alcohol consumed my dear dad's tale.  And, I needed to learn to trust, talk and feel again - classic traits of children of alcoholic parents.

Like the sermon on the mount address of Jesus in Matthew 5:1-12, acceptance principles are analogous, I realized...finally.  Accepting my self and my story completes the threads, brings life's trek together, and, helped me appreciate the need for the gym shoe laces tied with two loops.  Like laps of life, my tale's threads connect in helping others to ask:  How does your garden grow?


Sunday Sermon: Homily for August 17, 2014

Matthew 15: 21-28


The outsider had it.

She persisted and Jesus responded.

The Canaanite woman would not take no for an answer.

Jesus listened to her.  He gave in to this outsider.  She begged Jesus to hear her.

He did.

Her persistent faith pressed on beyond her origin of birth.

God simply needs to hear me. 

Just ask God.

Although a sinner, I trust that God welcomes me and my request for life after death.

God will hear me also.


Vatican Synod October 5-19

The social and spiritual crisis of the world today is increasingly impacting the Catholic Church's evangelizing mission as it concerns the family now.

Consequently, Pope Francis is calling a special meeting October 5-19th to address issues of the widespread practice of cohabitation; same-sex unions; inter-religious marriages, and more.

Vet Support and Venting

Join me the first Tuesday, monthly through December, for Vet Support and Venting, starting September 2nd, 7-8:30 pm in Mainstreet Coney and Grille, 1985 Jefferson, Det., 48207.

Get support and resources to face trauma caused from battle fatigue and more with a licensed counselor and pastor of 38 years.

Call 313 530 2777, for more.

Saturday, August 9, 2014

Weddings in the Woods, and, at the Water at Stoney Creek, Michigan

O happy bliss!

Alicja is getting married at Stoney Creek in metropolitan Detroit, MI., later today.  She's my brother's daughter, the daughter he raised and loves.

Conversation is abuzz about it.


One relative refused to attend since the couple are "naturalists" who revere the water, the elements, the trees, and more.

Let it be.


The couple love each other.

And, they enjoy nature.  And, want a wedding by the water.

So . . .

Let it be.

Let them be.

Relish the relationship of matrimonial bliss.  Attend the wedding.

After all, love is love.

"Love your neighbor as yourself," the Good Book says.

And, "Love one another."

"God is love."


Not sure I can improve on that.

May the newlyweds "I do" be forever.

For ever!

That's another blog, however.

Thursday, August 7, 2014

Spirited Service of Praise

When I showed up to support the pastor at World Deliverance Temple in Dearborn Heights, Michigan, Tuesday, I sensed I was in for a lively service of praise.

A drummer, keyboard players, and more were plenty.

The week-long conference hosted a variety of speakers including Pastor Winans of Perfecting Church in Detroit.  And, his voice reminded me of an experience at his church years ago when he sang and I felt like I was in heaven, not that I know what that is like.

A grateful pastor welcomed the inter and intra-faith clergy.

Pastors are like that.

They know that linking our lives in God is crucial to ministry and more.

The Pentecostal service had the Imam wondering as I prepared him for what to expect.

He was grateful.

And, he accepted that people worship differently, saying, "I don't judge; God will sort them all out."

How true.


We clapped.  We shouted and prayed in tongues, even danced in praise of the Maker.

One's entire being is engaged here, I thought.

A Catholic physician turned from his front row saying, "We Catholics should try this!"

Why not, I thought.

God awaits our entire being to fully engage.  And, although we are more cerebral, I think there's room for diversity of ways of worshiping.

A Spiral of Failed Functioning

When a customer at a local restaurant ordered poached egg, oatmeal and yogurt, the server reported that they were out of yogurt.

"Would you like something else,"  I overheard her say to the patron.

"OK," I overheard again, "I'll have turkey patties," he said.

The waitress forgot the eggs and let the cashier know that the lack of yogurt seemed to confuse the waitstaff.

"Oh," she said, as I waited behind the customer to pay for my breakfast.  "At times, the trucks say they will bring yogurt when they forget to load it, but never do," the cashier told the waiting customer.

And, so goes the cycle of failed functioning.

How we are connected, I thought, as the cashier rang me out as I paid my bill.

We are.

When one function is upset, others follow.

Like with the yogurt.

We are so tied into each other and the cycle of service, aren't we?

Taking responsibility for the job I have at hand will assist in keeping the spiral functioning well.

Or, else.

Friday, August 1, 2014

A Pot Luck Picnic Sunday at Belle Isle Park

Crowds will be busy Sunday, August 3rd from 12 noon until 5 pm at Detroit's jewel of a park, Belle Isle.

We will gather on Central near the Playcape area.

The sun is scheduled to shine widely upon us. 

Bit, even if it rained we would enjoy the shower some, wait, and, get back to the busy schedule the planners set.

Not a dull moment Sunday.

Too much for me.

I like more calm and quiet to talk and sit and sip a beverage with the homeless who attend also.

It's nestled downtown at East Grand Boulevard and Jefferson blocks from where I overlook it at home.

Diverse people will bring various kinds of food to feast upon with all faiths and generations who will play soccer, get their faces painted, dance, drum, and more.

It's the third annual picnic for all.

Cost-free and family friendly we'll pray and give praise to the Creator of trees, rivers, and living temples, at 12 noon.

Kosher hot dogs and an array of dishes will satisfy then.

Kids will run and sing, while adults will engage eyes and voices of diversity with one another.

I relish this annual event.

Join me.

Summer Solitude, Silence

Some solitude and silence twice daily with twenty minutes each times seems to row my boat, so to speak.

When neglected, my day seems less joyous.

"After doing so, Jesus went up on the mountain by himself to pray."

                           - Mt. 14:23

When I have my fill of people where I minister on the street, I pause.

It's as though I dismiss the crowd as Jesus did.

I rest.

A park nearby helps.

And, the Detroit River at Belle Isle draws me deep within.

Finding a place, a spot to hear God whisper in the wind, or my ear and heart, helps me to be ready and welcoming for the crowd. . .again...later, or, tomorrow.

Sunday's Sermon: A Homily on Satisfaction

I can't get no satisfaction.

Someone sang those lyrics out of the depths of his heart, no?

When one's basic needs are met, am I more satisfied with giving to the poor, than buying another TV with a wider, bigger, larger screen? Or, a huge mansion that may need a scooter for me to get around from one end to the other?

Perhaps not!

So . . .

"Why spend your money for what is not bread; your wages for what fails to satisfy?"

                                           - Isaiah 55:2

The prophet would concur, it seems to me.

Meaningful living with a semblance of satisfaction comes from stooping low to serve the most vulnerable, or, those near me in need at any given moment.

In our economy that depends on consumerism, the question is a challenge, no?

Subliminal messages in the media, and more, press us to spend and shop 'til I drop!

Now, a fresh loaf of bread made from scratch and free from preservatives and processed ingredients clearly satisfies me.  The "On the Rise" Bakery on Gratiot, near McClellan in Detroit motivates me to eat Farmer's Rye, for example.

The Bread of Heaven, this Eucharistic feast -- simple as it is -- made from human hands off God, satisfies hungry hearts.

My mother, and Mary, perhaps would agree. 

After all, they were simple peasants seeking to serve and stoop low to meet the basic needs of my four sister and two brothers. 

Furthermore, in their own womb of an oven, they carried meaning and more.

Mom always seemed satisfied despite meager money, and, living from paycheck to paycheck.

May appeared that way also, no?

God, assist me to balance desires, wants and needs by finding meaning in serving right where I am at home, work, school or on the streets of  Chene/Jefferson at the Detroit Branch of the Elmwood Park Library where I craft this talk today.

Saturday, July 26, 2014

Surprised by Scripture by N.T. Wright

Wright engages contemporary issues in his latest tome.

A formidable figure in Christian though and Scripture, Wright takes on topics on ordaining women, idolatry, politics, the historical Adam, science and religion, the Apocalypse, and hopeful people.

I couldn't get back to finishing Wright's book each time I put it down.

It reads easily and is a head-turner.

Clergy would do well to sit down and discuss it together once they git it the attention it deserves.

'Be kind to Each Other'

That's the message, Michael Balcomb, president of the Family Federation for World Peace and Unification, shouted Thursday at Detroit's Belle Isle State Park.

The remarks were made at the 50-state bus tour recalling the International Unification Church founder's automobile trek across the USA, including Belle Isle, five decades ago. Rev. Sun Myung Moon, who was imprisoned, began Unification in Korea.  One local leader said Moon was to finish what Jesus didn't complete.

Aim of the spirited memorial at a parcel of land with a rock and marker on it, and, a tree planted there at Belle Isle is to revitalize the nation, organizers said.

"What governments cannot do for peace, people of all faiths who love, can bring peace to Palestine and Israel," said Balcomb.

Wednesday, July 23, 2014


Thomas Jefferson said that on freedom of religion.

"Truth will set you free."  - Jesus the Christ.

A Favorite

Lord, I am Yours,
and I must belong to no one but you.

My soul is yours, and must live only by you.

My will is yours,
and must love only for you.

I must love you as my first cause,
since I am from you.

I must love you more than my own being,
since my being subsists in you.

I must love you more than myself,
since I am all yours and all in you.


                                      - Saint Francis de Sales

At 313, Happy Birthday, Detroit! July 24, 1701 - Feast of Saint Sharbel Makluf, Priest Matthew 13:10-17

There will be a long, colorful sheet cake with 313 candles and lots of lit up faces celebrating my native birthplace, my Motown Motor City's 313rd birthday, tomorrow at Belle Isle State Park at East Grand Boulevard at Jefferson in Detroit, Michigan USA.

Happy birthday, ole friend! 

I love you Detroit, MI.,!

A 50-state bus tour recalling the Reverend Sun Yeong Moon's automobile pilgrimage across the USA fifty years ago to Detroit's Belle Isle, among the other States, will roll int town at about 1 pm Thursday, July 24, 2014, the exact date of Detroit's founding in 1701.

Prayer and praise will powerfully be part of the crowd's regional reconciling of religions also.  Interfaith clergy will sprinkle water from the Detroit River to cleanse of feuds over doctrine and more, over the centuries.

Not to mention the music ministry with Steve Maestro Thompson of the Lord's Side Ministry, and long-time music minister at Detroit area Catholic churches including St. Charles on Baldwin Street not far from Martha Reeve's home where she grew up. She recently came home to mark her own birthday with Motown!

One family under God.

That's the theme of gratitude enveloping Thursday.

And, on Friday, August 29th, from 5:30-7 pm, current and former Detroiters will share good news about Detroit in Main Street Restaurant, 1985 Jefferson Avenue.  All are welcome to come and share the news that Detroit is up and running and open for business despite its filing for bankruptcy a year ago.

Come and see!

"It is error alone that needs the support of government.  Truth can stand by itself,"  founding father Thomas Jefferson said,, addressing freedom of religion.

And, of course, Jesus the Christ said:

"The truth will set you free."

And, with food for all, and more, everything seems to be heading to our jewel of a Park Thursday for a big Detroit  birthday bash!

Friday, July 18, 2014

A Bishop Is Called to Task

The New York Times called for a bishop to resign in its op/ed pages today.

Investigations seem to be uncovering disturbing truths, let alone allegations.

A local bishop doesn't think he will resign, however.

Pressure on him presses on daily.

How can he endure the ache and push to surrender?


Some time ago, I called his office and wanted to ask this bishop to do a courageous thing.

His affect seemed flat.

I didn't have the heart to tell him then.

Weeks later, I called his office again asking his priest secretary to give him a message.

He replied that he would.

I trust he did.

Media is all abuzz about this story.

Honesty is the best policy.  Whoever one is, she or he is set free by the truth.

In all humility, I know.

God is in all this always.

The bishop will do the right thing, I hope, sooner than later.

Let's pray he will as his parishioners applaud his accepting who their Shepherd is leading them.


It is exciting to walk the streets near Chene and Jefferson in zip code 48207.

Near the Elmwood Park Library, a walk in the mall next to the high rise is telling.

All of God's people are here.

One gals walks about with a can of beer in a brown bag.  Children are skateboarding.

A crowd of men are drinking in the shady area of this park.

They join the small group of us under a tree sitting on the benches nearby as we rap about God and more.

They are engaging people.

Seemingly honest also.

Meaningfulness is what they seek, it seems, but, what would I know.

However, I do believe, they love life in their quest for more.

I love ministering with them all.

Respect is key in all we say and do.

We will return tomorrow under the same tree.

Join us.

Monday, July 14, 2014

Dead Wrong

How psychiatric drugs kill your child and what you can do about it is a DVD presented by the Citizens Commission on Human Rights.

Two years in the making, this riveting video lays bare the destruction wrought by psychiatrists upon every sector of our society.

Graphic eye-opening stories of mothers who watched their own daughters or sons die after drugs changed their brains, medical experts, among others, listen to victims in this devastating account of psychiatric abuse ever produced.

1 323 467 4242 or 1 800 869 2247

CCHR International
6616 Sunset Boulevard
Los Angeles, California 90028 USA

Rediscoverying My Motown, Detroit, MI.,August 29, 2014

Open up your mind and heart and rediscover Detroit, Michigan, August 29, 2014 from 5:30-7 PM in Main Street Grill and Coney Island, 1985 E. Jefferson in downtown Detroit.

A French word, "Retrouvaille" means "rediscover."

Former and current Detroit residents are meeting to share "good news" stories about the City and their experience of it.

Enjoy a meal in the private space at Main Street, hear personal urban legends, and other stories about growing up, being educated, and, leaving and returning to Detroit again.

Weeks ago I moved back into Rivertown off of Jefferson at McDougall.  A whole world awaits me to unfold and open up what seemed impossible in a city building up from the ashes.

Good news is possible here in the heart of Detroit where I've been spending time in the Elmwood Park Community at Chene/Jefferson hearing the hearts of an engaging community who smile, laugh, live and love like the rest of humanity.

Trust me.

Come home again.

Wednesday, July 9, 2014

Listening to Love

No one wants to be taught, to be criticized, to be blamed, to be reminded, to solve problems, or to be minimized when all one wants at any given time is to be listened to by another.

True more so of a child.

When people want to correct and criticize me when all I want is for her or him to listen to me, engaging in dialogue becomes a chore, if not impossible.

Children want a safe place to open up to mom or dad, or, to a mentor, or more.

Since a parent feels responsible for a child's wellbeing, she or he may want to always correct, teach, or influence the child in some way.

Taking time to listen is a skill learned and earned over time.

Adults may get turned off to another person when he or she insists, or rants on and on in an effort to convince the other of another perspective.


Plan now to participate in "Celebrating the Smart Step-Family," Thursday, Aug. 21, 2014, 5:30-7 PM in La Dolce Vita Restaurant, 17546 Woodward, Detroit, 48203, blocks north of McNichols.  Enter through the back at secured parking.  Free. 

Learn to recognize the unique personality of each family member; solve everyday puzzles of steparenting and stepchildren relationships; learn communication skills to deal with former spouses;
honor families or origin while developing new traditions; and learn to invest the time to grow a stepfamily slowly rather than look for instant results in a hurried, often frenetic culture of speed as the new drug running rampant.

Call (313) 530 2777 for more information on building families and mending conflicts and fractures.


Monday, July 7, 2014

34-year-old Polish Festival July 11-13, 586 264 7990

Move over red, white and blue!

On the tails of Independence Day, the ethnic Polish-American community is gearing up for another of its outstanding events that draw thousands each year.

Polonia - the widely-popular Polish-American community is moving in with its 34th annual American-Polish Century Club festival and craft show next weekend at 14 Mile Road and Maple Lane in Sterling Heights, MI.

With all things Polish guests can expect stuffed cabbage with turkey or beef, pierogi, "city" chicken and potato pancakes, including piwa - Polish beer, and the famous Polka dance with a wild kick to watch out for when moving.

See you at the festival for food, fun and friendship.

Monday, June 30, 2014


When one moves, a series of activities is required to steer the transition from one home to another.

Take for example, my trek from Harrison Township to Detroit's River Place.  I've been at packing, sorting, and selling matter for weeks.

Plenty of time, energy and effort is required.

Perhaps you know from your own experience.

Transfer utilities, mail, and more. A change of address to the postal service helps.

Then, there's selling or leasing the current condominium while settling into the new place without too much difficulty.

It has been a smooth ride even though the corner of the very heavy glass table top crashed into the step on the way into my apartment.

Now, it is good for nothing.

But, the hand of the mover could have been shattered or bloodied, for that matter.  Apologizing profusely, I told the mover it was just a table top.

There is a liberating satisfaction to all of this as I rid myself of things no longer needed. 

Packing them and putting them in my car for St. Vincent DePaul nearby is gratifying.

Then, there's my watchful eye of not taking anything I don't need into the new home.

And, my Harrison Township condominium is looker leaner, cleaner and empty each time I spend hours there these days.

Moving. . .

I'm glad it happens rarely.

Saturday, June 28, 2014


We like power.

Power is like information we refuse to communicate to others in order to "lord it over them," and be in charge or control, for example.

But, unhealed woundedness and power is projected and transmitted onto others.

And, that's the rub.

Bullying, and more enters the scene.

The "false self" that the ancient mystics - those head over heal in love with God - speak of is full of the self, the false self, the ego, that edges God out, as some dub the toxic ego, the shell that is superficial that I like to present to others.

Imagination is born of still and quiet minds, hearts and beings who know to whom they belong, namely, to the Creator, the infinite One - the beginning and end, the alpha and omega of my being.

In a culture that projects and transmits its false self, beyond the "true self" that Trappist monk, Thomas Merton (famous for his Seven Story Mountain that many young people and seekers read) also speaks of, along with another Cistercian monk, Thomas Keating of a Colorado, bad power comes from unhealed wounds that toss about egocentric behavior, or, narcissistic personality disorder named in the Diagnostic Statistic Manual that social sciences label people for insurance payment and purposes.

When the shell and ego is surrendered, and,one submits to the Maker, the three conversions or ways begin in the process of morphing/mending and more.

Not before.

The first journey has the believer crawling like an infant in the spiritual life. It involves uncovering and taking off the masks one wears to present him or herself in the false self to others.

Stage two of morphing is clinically called discovering, when one begins to walk in his or her faith journey in God.

And, finally the third way of conversion of self involves divine union, running into the arms of God, as it were, submitting and trusting totally in surrender.

Such divine union happens by way of connecting with the Maker daily a couple of times at least of 15-20 minutes of stillness, of silence, hearing the voice of God.

In this conversion, the "false self" falls like a deck of cards tumble as they are lined up against one another.

Ever so slowly, the "real self" made in God's image and likeness evolves as the false self folds, and, lets go of ego.

False power goes the way of the false self also.

Service beyond the grab for power and influence shines and illuminates one in the surrender and submission to the true self, the only real self worthy of living the abundant life.

Thursday, June 26, 2014


Some like it.

Others abhor change.

Change keeps me growing, morphing, even mending more daily.

Moving back to Detroit after decades away in Macomb County, Michigan, finds me loving the move and transition home again.

The nine of us lived at 7107 Arcola Street on Detroit's east side until the '1968 riot and a robbery pressed my mother to convince my dad and the rest of us to be safe and secure and leave.

We left.

After assignments as a pastor in Detroit Saint Raymond, St. Gerard, and St. Christine in Brightmoor, I moved to Sterling Heights after the bishop wanted me to do counseling.

"You're good at it," his aide said, unappreciative of the fact that I had no license, insurance or credentials to function without lawsuit, and more.

Ever since this "cryptic" assignment, I find myself not trusting those who requested this change of assignment.  In fact, the current boss decided that the counseling is a non-ministerial assignment, go figure.

With little experience, if any as a pastor, the present bishop changed my assignment for a so-called, Special Assignment with dog tags IDs and all, without even letting me know.


That change I can do without.

One goes with the flow even though some authorities have their own agendas.

But the move back to the City of Detroit is a welcome transition.

People are engaging and friendly in the Harbor Town market, and more.

They stop and listen as I engage St. Paul's Street Evangelization along Jefferson/McDougall Streets where I reside in River Place that overlooks Detroit jewel, Belle Isle Park, and the Ren Cen GM Building, among other historic buildings, churches, and nearby parks I walk daily with my dog, Katura, along the Detroit River.

Change is good.

I've downsized again and freed up massive amounts of books, and more.

A feeling of liberation buoys my attitude of letting go any attachments to things, property and more.

Bring on my Motown.

I'm glad to be home again in a booming city filling with restoration, renewal and vitality once more.

Saturday, June 21, 2014

Does Someone You Know Suffer From Anxiety, Depression, Stress, Panic Attacks or Insomnia?

If so, you'll want to join Dr. David Jantz, Thursday, July 10 at 12 noon in La Dolce Vita Restaurant, at 17546 Woodward, Detroit, just blocks north of McNichols in Detroit.

Alternative solutions will be proposed over medicines and more.

The Palmer-educated chiropractor studied in Iowa and now practices in Grosse Pointe amid multiple talks he gives on nutritional and other solutions, and, the dangers of psychiatric drugs, particularly psychotropics and their side effects and long-term effects

Join me as I serve as host at a Detroit favorite Italian restaurant where the iconic Elanor Josaitis often dined.

The talk is free.  You pay for the dinner, however.

Limited seating will rush you to reserve a spot in the meeting room by calling (313) 881 7677 to mark your seat.

It Ends Where It All Began

Someone said something similar to that heading.

T.S. Elliott came closest suggesting that one goes full circle and ends where one started.

So it is with me.

Back home to my native Detroit, Michigan.  Moving back to my city on a rebound.

That's what I will do next Tuesday as I pack up the little I have and transport it to Rivertown where pastoral green walking paths, a spirit I appreciate, symphony and shows downtown, festival of all ethnic origins, and more await me.

Couple that with ministry on the streets along Jefferson, and, nearby, Belle Isle (now leased by the State of Michigan) a  jewal of enormous respect.  There, the late William Cunningham, a revered pastor who founded Focus:HOPE in the wake of Detroit's civil unrest in 1968, jogged before he would trek to Saint Bonaventure Monastery nearby to pray and quiet down some in stillness with the Maker.


Detroit awaits me like heaven does as I make another round of five years with a passion for Motown.

By then, I will have turned full circle.

Born in Detroit in 1949 at St. Joseph Hospital on Milwaukee and East Grand Boulevard, my twin, Patti, and I emerged on Detroit's east side at Lynch Road and Van Dyke, near the City Airport.

Ministry awaits me, and, the joy of engaging with enthusiasm and then some, for the Maker.

Bring on my City! 

And, heaven can wait at least another half decade as I nest at River Place along the Detroit River. 

There I will overlook Belle Isle and Windsor.

Home, I will call it for Cara, Katura, my 4-legged Yorkie who bustles with energy I had decades ago in Brightmoor.

Home sweet home.

My Detroit.

Tuesday, June 17, 2014

Hundreds to Converge on Warren, MI., City Hall Thursday

When the saints go marching in. . .

Remember that tune by Louis Armstrong?

I do.

Trumpet and accordion will accompany those in procession with balloons, banners and international flags.

It will steer hundreds of families, among others, into the Warren City Hall June 19th at 4:45 pm when Mayor Jim Fouts welcomes the All-Faiths Festival, and more.

"The Star-Spangled Banner"  and "Ave Maria" will be sung by Maggie Rees-Baker.

"Amazing Grace" will be sung by Bob Gillenkirk, a blind man.

Felician Sister Mary Felicity, campus minister at Livonia Ladywood High School will say an opening prayer
after anniversary couples, and more, march into the atrium at the civic center of Michigan's second-largest city.

Jewish, Christian and Muslim Scriptures will be proclaimed.

Skits depicting humor, forgiveness, conflict resolving, and more will add to the festivities celebrating family at a time when its definition is enlarging.

It will be upbeat.

When the Saint Go Marching In.... will end the hour-long event after a benediction.

All are welcome.

I don't want to miss it.

Announcements will remind the crowd of a joint Belle Isle Picnic, Sunday, August 3rd from 12 noon, and, a Urban/Suburban Unity Walk, Thursday, Aug. 28th at 8 Mile/Van Dyke's Warren side into Detroit toward Outer Drive and Saint Lazarus Serbian Cathedral for a pot luck meal and program to bridge Detroit, and, step further into overcoming racism, lifting love.

How Big Is Our Table?

 CORPUS CHRISTI: Body of Christ

At home, our table would enlarge around supper time when the aroma of mom's fresh-made apple pie filled the nostrils of my friends and me. 

The buddies I hung out with wouldn't go home.

So, mom made sure they were fed.

It was in her DNA to be hospitable and welcoming.

It was.

We always seemed to have enough even though nine was a crowd and we were poor.

Like the feeding of the five thousand, tradition maintains that there was an abundance out of scarcity.

There was.

Where did the extra food come from?


Did the Massasoit bring deer and maize? 

Certainly, the road to enough was through the caring hands and hearts of one another, for sure.

Jesus would make certain of that.

He would.

From the few fish and loaves, much emerged. 

Much more.

Baskets full.


Hospitality over hostility is a lesson my parents taught by example.

No one was shut out.

No one.

And, in a day and age when exclusion and absolutes reign for some, the table has to enlarge.

It does.

Jesus is like that.

Thursday, June 12, 2014


If you're like me, we tend to do something when we have to, and, usually not before, true?

I take out the garbage when I have to, I wake up when I have to, I look for a job when I have to. . .

You know the routine.

In 1950, a year after my twin sister, Patti, and me emerged from mom's womb, my Detroit was hometown to 1.85 million people. 

Now, Detroit is smaller than Milwaukee with less than 700,000.

What happened?

You name it: Detroit shrank when economic forces in the world undermined my Motown's base.

There was corrupt government.

Leadership failed to lead well with little or no accountability.

Government officials squandered my Detroit's wealth.

My parents, among others, moved to Warren when security and safety seemed to vanish after the '68 uprising that pitted blacks and whites against each other.

So, why would I want to move back to Detroit after having served in the blighted Brightmoor area at Fenkell and Lasher in northwest Detroit from 1979-81 while concurrently completing a doctor of ministry degree, and, organizing the ecumenical Michigan Coalition for Human Rights?


After all of that did me in and required a three month respite to mend up, the evergreen virtue of hope once more calls me to my native town where the seven of us - including two sets of twins - resided in our aluminum-sided home on Arcola Street near Lynch Road and Van Dyke, miles from the late, once upon a time, sprawling Romanesque edifice and grade and high school where sports champions and scholars, and more emerged from Saint Thomas the Apostle Church at Townsend and Miller.

Of course, it will take many years to raise up this great City!

It will!

It will take money.

Like the $456 million coming from the bankruptcy plan earmarked to remove blight in the vacant lots, abandoned homes, tired, tried and rundown industries like the Dodge Plant in Hamtramck, MI., where immigrant flocked to work on the assembly line building cars in the '50s.

Detroit, however, is not a disease. 

It may be down.

But, it is not out.

It may be dire, but it is not without promise.

And, besides being a model for what may happen to other towns in need of awakening, Detroit is being watched across the country.

After all, as Detroit goes, so goes the nation, warned the late, charismatic Father William Cunningham of Focus:HOPE who pumped hope into Detroit with its mission statement that illuminated the dignity and worth of every human being when civil unrest exploded in the streets with fire, fury and anger over race.

Simply listening to Detroiters these days while shopping in Harbor Town on Jefferson Avenue where I live now, there is a bouncy in their walk, their spirit, and, in their voice, often accompanied with a smile.

Where I lived in Harrison Township, MI., for six years, the drivers speeding along Jefferson, between Crocker and Shook Roads literally scares my dog and me as we try to take a scroll along that stretch each day.

We played 'dodge em ball' in the street when we were kids, now they play 'dodge em cars,' I'm told.

For one's safety and security, one's eyes and ears must be fully engaged along Jefferson where speed limits are hardly enforce, and, even police cars drive as fast, or faster than resident, or visitors to this boat town and sleepy community where leadership has yet to steer.

officials want to erect a so-called 'nautical mile,' I'm told, near Terri's Terrace Restaurant and a trailer home park doomed nearby in Harrison Township.

After a couple of unreturned calls about these plans over enforcing speed limits, it became clearer that show and 'primping' of Boat Town transcends safety and security.

I want to be part of the revival in faith and promise in my Detroit.

I do.

It will take tons of energy, stamina, vision, an enduring spirit, and more amid dilapidated buildings and empty lots where sturdy homes and families once stood.

Social and spiritual problems stem from a lack of meaning and purpose in life.

Aimlessness abounds.

For sure.

No doubt about it.

But I want to help Detroit rebound the way I did in high school when I played basketball and football in teamwork even though I mostly played left out!

A walk yesterday at noon by the river with full view of Belle Isle and Windsor, Canada, followed by a visit to River Place, and more, spikes much hope and healing here in Detroit.

That evergreen virtue.

It's green.

And, it calls out beyond those people who "don't do Detroit," and will take more than bulldozers, wrecking balls and dump trucks.

I'm in.

Engagement is part of the package of the solution to rise from the ashes.

And, I'm ready for the challenge again.

Wednesday, June 4, 2014

7 Big Myths About Marriage

While Millennials, ages 18-33, reveal that only 26% of them are married, 69% says that they would like to marry.

Generation X claims 36% are married, and 48% of baby boomers, a survey from Pew Foundation shows currently.

Christopher and Jennifer Kaczor's, The Seven Big Myths About Marriage, sums up what marriage is, along with being a recipe to navigate marriage's consolations and desolations today.

With humor and humility, the authors appeal to me in this tone.

Celebrating marriage and family, this tome is a valuable resource while being a reminder of the fruits of marriage even today.

In Good Times and in Bad

In sickness and in health,
we belong to each other
as we belong to you, God ever faithful.
By morning and by night may your name be on our lips,
a blessing to all our days:
so may kindness and patience be ever among us, a hunger for mercy, justice, and truth,
a song of thankfulness in all we do.

We ask this of our Maker, and more.


Do you remember where you were this day on June 4, 1976?

Monday, May 26, 2014

SUNDAY'S SERMON: Caesar's Last Breath

The Word of God for June 8, 2014
Acts 2:1-11
Psalm 104
I Cor. 12: 3-13
John 20:19-23

Hurt people hurt people.

Along the way, however, 1,022 molecules of air and breath was exhaled by Julius Caesar, while dying, for example.

Similarly, for each of us.

Caesar's last breath is a chemistry formula dubbed for molecular diffusion.

Claims are that some of Caesar's final breaths of air are in the air you and I inhale daily.

"Receive the Holy Ghost."

How do I breathe God into the space I occupy? 

How do I inhale the breath of God in prayer and a daily connection with God?


That was breathed upon Jesus' disciples in the upper room encounter of the Spirit.

Fresh air.

We like it.

Yet, we know that hurt people hurt people.

The virginity of the 22-year-old man who murdered six others and himself comes to mind here.

The Santa Barbara, California lad was hurt that girls wouldn't ask him out, apparently.  His 137-page manifesto and U Tube witnesses to his abandonment feelings, anxiety and explosive anger eventually in the usual routine and ritual street rampages sweeping this nation.

Hurt people hurt others.

God's Word and our communions with each other connects us to meaning and that deepest place with the Creator.

Worth and esteem comes from such depth each day.

It does.

What is not healed by the grace of God is projected and transmitted onto others.

Growth requires healing of early childhood hurts and the lack of being taught the mysteries of life - that I don't get everything I want; I will get sick, will be excluded, even rejected by others; will be passed over for a promotion, and so forth - that consequently erupt in anger unless processed and faced in counseling, with a parent, and more.

Individuals and systems must grow or die.

The gifts of the Holy Spirit, and, the virtues, strengths, help.  Google "virtues," and gifts today.

These inner strengths of charity, faith, hope, prudence, fortitude, justice, temperance, and gentleness, counsel, and more gifts of God see us through an often turbulent trek in the spiritual life like a "roller-coaster" ride of desolation and consolation, good times and bad.

Hurt people hurt people.

Unless I morph, mend, and more, the cycle of destruction, far from God's way, rules.


Like a merry-go-round, this latest rite of routine serial violence by 20-30-year olds is more common than blowing one's nose these days, it seems.


The 22-year-old lad on his rampage in California, killing six and himself, proves that hurt people hurt people.

They do.

We do.

And, if young people are not taught early the mysteries of life - I don't get everything I want in life; I will be rejected and excluded at times in school, will get sick, lose a love, a life, a job, a pet, for example and, die - then, when refused, abandoned, angry, or more about entitled feelings, I may strike out, even gun down with hate.

That seems to be the ritual of violence daily in the U.S.A.

Unless this cycle is stopped with constructive choices and mentoring of our boys and girls early on, we will grieve a little, move on, and, see this same practice repeat itself in crime, drive-by shootings, more.

God help us.

God, help me to stand up and make a difference in my own, and, another's life.

Friday, May 23, 2014

Remembering on Memorial Day

Some will pause Monday as we mark Memorial Day in this nation.

Those who gave their lives in the ultimate sacrifice will be recalled.

A moment to stop.

A time to recall loss of life, love, live, and more.

When US veterans allegedly wait long periods of time for treatment these days, my thoughts turn to them, to my brother killed in Vietnam in 1968, and to those who continue to serve today.

While burgers and brew will mark the day for many, others will also pause to ponder the real meaning of Memorial Day.

I will.

For sure.

Forever grateful for all who paid the price for freedom that is not free, I will pause and pray.

Thursday, May 22, 2014

Volunteers in Prevention (VIP)


That's what  I thought of the VIP Mentoring Program orientation I attended the other day in Detroit.

A handbook guided three of us into the role of mentoring youngsters.

And, it was clear, concise and helpful.

It was.

The leader walked us through the entire process on how to mentor well.

In two hours, our handbook showed us how to lead as mentors.  And, page by page we learned how to help and serve students at risk.

I was glad I signed up to mentor.

Much like the Detroit Public School Reading Mentor Program, I liked what I saw here.

I wondered how to bring VIP Mentoring to Macomb County, MI.

Wednesday, May 21, 2014

Called for Jury Duty

One never knows when the summons will call.

At least, I didn't.

But, the surprise came and 8:15 am today was the call to report for jury duty.

I watched videos about the service, hear a judge speak about the judicial system, waited, and, waited some more.  In fact, 132 of us waited.

We were give a break for fifteen minutes to walk about Mt. Clemens, MI.

Fresh air sounded good.

When I returned we waited some more.

By 11 am, however,  the receptionist said that we weren't all needed so she called out my number to conclude my jury duty.

With a letter in hand and a $13.01 check to arrive within three weeks, I left.  And, she said she wouldn't call for a year.

So much for democracy.

A delightful experience relishing the time with other in the same boat.

Friday, May 16, 2014

Standing Tall

People everywhere are standing tall these days for the voiceless many in and outside the womb.

It amazes me that people are doing this for the cause of justice and right.

They're from all walks of life, all sizes, and, every accent.

It's as though the clarion call is imprinted in people's DNA.

That's impressive.

While people, and, families are busy with so much, some still take time to stand up while others simply sit still and say nothing in the face of injustice.

Thursday, May 15, 2014

Mentoring Children, Marriage and Family


The more I hear about it, the more I am convinced of its merit for marriage, family, and children.

Children need mentoring.

Marriages need mentoring.

In fact, don't we all need some kind of mentoring to live, and, to lead well?

Studies show that youngsters who have mentoring from their parents, among others, are less prone to commit crime.

Monday, May 12, 2014

Celebrating Family, An Urban/Suburban Picnic at Belle Isle, and, a Unity Walk in Detroit

Louis Armstrong's "When the Saints Go Marching In," will trumpet in hundreds of Detroit area families Thursday, June 19 at 4:45 pm at the Warren, MI., Civic Center Atrium.

Armed with colorful balloons, children, parents and grandparents will showcase family today in a festive program with Warren Mayor Jim Fouts and clergy.

All are welcome to attend and park free  in the attached garage off of Van Dyke, north of Twelve Mile Road.

And, you'll want to join in the picnic for all at Belle Isle landscape area the first Sunday of August from 12 noon.  The inter-faith event is a pot luck event with games for children, and more.  All are welcome to this annual event where hundreds attend.

Finally, an Urban/Suburban Unity Walk from 8 Mile/Van Dyke Warren, MI., side into Detroit is set for Thursday, Aug. 28 at 6 pm with a program following at St. Lazarus Serbian Orthodox Cathedral at Outer Drive and Van Dyke.

Saturday, May 10, 2014

Walk Tall

Father James L. Meyer stars in "Walk Tall," a theatrical production that follows the true story of the young rebel priest in an unrelenting pursuit of fairness and equality during the 1960s civil rights movement and the struggle of a new generation to change the leadership of the U>S..

Included is a live musical reenactment by the Cannonball Adderley Quintet, Pete Seeger and Phil Ochs, May 8-11, 2014.  Visit WalkTallWalkTall.Com, or call (313) 899 2243.  Hastings Street Ballroom, 715 E. Milwaukee, Detroit 48202.

Thursday, May 8, 2014


Mothers are special.

They are.

My own mom comes to mind with Mother's Day coming Sunday.

Although her life ended with cancer at 54, my mom's life was a full one.

With two sets of twins and seven of us children, my mom went without often so that her children could have food, shoes, and more.

She gave so much of herself.

To the end of her days, she was a blessing, and, a joy.

Raised on a farm in Cheboygan, MI., in a merged family, my mother came to Detroit to work while still a teen. 

I recall how she would tell us of her various jobs working and cleaning homes in the Jewish community, and more.  Dad also came to Detroit early in life from a farm in Port Austin, MI.

Home-made foods were always on mom's mind.  From scratch she made chocolate cake with real flour, and more. 

Apple and cherry pies attracted my brother's, and, my own friends.

Life was good with mom at the center, and, dad supporting her always.

Saturday, May 3, 2014


Are Americans numb?

With 40 million U.S. addicts currently, is this threat to a functioning society worth noticing?


Such danger calls us all to action, or else.

We must stop the cycle of addiction.

Before anything else can happen, destruction of one's temple, soul must be terminated.

That's what an addiction does.

It destroys life.

It does.

A Homily on Luke 24:13-35




When crossing a street I was told to be aware of the above-three items.

Stop.  I must stop at the red light if I am to get across the street safely.  Stopping puts me in a right state of mind to prepare me to take on the next step before crossing the street.

Look.  View the surroundings.   Assess what's happening.  Pay attention to traffic.

Listen.  Engage the green light.  Accept what's happening and then walk across.

These three points are key to the spiritual life.

Did the disciples on the road to Emmaus miss Jesus?

Were they totally self-engaged?

Did they only wake up, notice and look after Jesus engaged them?

Intentional Disciples

How important discipleship is to the work of ministry of the Gospel if we are to thrive as a people, a church, and, a community of disciples of Jesus the Christ.

Before one can be ordained he or she, for that matter, needs to explicitly be in relationship with Jesus and repent.

I remember being ordained a priest.

However, I should have been prepared to be a minister of the Gospel.

This work is meant for apostles, not the unrepented, and, not for those who have no relationship with Jesus the Christ.

Charisms, gifts of the Holy Spirit emerge usually after one begins her or his relationship with Christ, not before.

Friday, April 25, 2014

Jimmy Carter: A Call to Action - Women, Religion, Violence and Power

The Carter Center gathered religious leaders, scholars and activists to align religious and political life with full equality for girls and women. 

Carter's latest tome tells of human trafficking, abuse and the violence that needs addressing the world over.

Human slaves.

Body mutilation.

Legitimized murder on a massive scale.

Men and boys are not superior to women and girls, Carter claims.

Such thinking is supported by some male religious leaders who distort the Bible, the Koran, and other sacred texts to perpetuate that women are inferior and unqualified to serve God on equal terms, the former president notes.

Shame on us.

Such a premise seems to justify physical punishment of women and girls, claims Carter.

"Contributing to the abuse of women and girls is an acceptance of violence, from unwarranted armed combat to excessive and biased punishment for those who violate the law, writes Jimmy Carter who addresses suffering of women and girls who are denied equal rights.

Why are they?

Wednesday, April 23, 2014

Two Merciful Men

Although I wanted Mother Teresa of Calcutta, India to be recognized and canonized as a saint before
Popes John XXIII and John Paul II, the first popes to be raised to the level of saints in 700 years, the festive ceremony Sunday in Vatican Square will be appreciated by many Catholics, and more.

Amid wonderment about the sexual abuse crisis that was brewing during both pontificates, both are merciful men who seemed to lead well the 1.2 million-member Catholics. Leaders are only as good as the information they get from those who could have been more forthright and honest, rather than looking the other way, perhaps.

"Peace on Earth," an encyclical by Pope John the XXIII who called for "fresh air" in the church, is among the most notable of his many writings, coupled with the worldwide ecumenical Vatican II.

The Cold War was raging, and John XXIII spoke up.

He did.

Unafraid was John.

That council from 1962-65 gets blamed for so much in the church's disarray today. 

Got to blame someone, something at some time, I guess.

Social unrest and thunderous change at the time when the authority of God followed human likes and wants reigned.

Fresh air was needed in the church.

Good John XXIII led the Holy Spirit's breeze and wind giving Mother Church a birth anew.

Although I was in the eighth grade at the time, I only wondered what the council in Rome was all about. I was unaware for my age.

And, while Pope John Paul II helped to "get the horses back in the barn," so to speak, Vatican II released the laity with a liberty and respect for their gifts unheard of ever.

Yet, still, their gifts go unappreciated, it seems to me.

Collaboration, collegiality and local ecclesiology was front and center.

Good John Paul II aimed at bringing back devotions, even the Mother of Perpetual Help devotions that were sung and prayed weekly at my home church of the late Saint Thomas the Apostle on Detroit's east side.  I enjoyed them.  Who wouldn't savor prayers to Mary, one mom like all mothers who really are the center of families.

Moms calls us together.

My own mother of seven gathered us with dad around the table for supper, for study, for chores, discipline, boundaries, for the rosary, and, so much more.

Sunday, two merciful men will be canonized.

Praise God.

They are set apart as the rule by which the rest of us may line up our lives after Jesus the Christ, to get to heaven, unless one has other plans.

The ideal of the strength and virtue of mercy is in fact greater than justice.

It is.

Look at Pope Francis.

A merciful man, indeed.

He invites us to walk alongside of those estranged, condemned, forgotten, abandoned, looked down upon.

Moms are merciful, after all.

Popes and all of us are called to be that also.

Like the great Teresa of Calcutta who wanted those no one else wanted to care for and love, and clean, bathe and raise up in dignity.

There's a saint.

For sure.

Yet, I will rejoice that two others saints will also show us how to be more, to be better beyond bitter, bolder in the faith, and, in the daily trek we make in the trenches of people's hurts, desolations and consolations.

Praise God!

Men Can Be Better

Cokie Robert's comment that "Men could be better," is a challenge for all to heed.

The media voice makes much sense.

And, she was willing to stand up.

To say it to us guys.

We can be better.

I forgot the context of her comments Sunday on TV's morning shows, between Mass presiding,
but, I took notice at what she said.

Now, let the men begin. . .with a little push from the gals, of course, as always.

Women seem to know how to press men and lead well.

Thanks, Cokie!

Monday, April 21, 2014


Celebrating Family at the Warren, MI., Civic Center Atrium, Thursday, June 19, 4:45 pm. All are welcome!  Families march in with balloons, and more!

Bridging Eight Mile Road with the Second Annual Unity Walk from 8 Mile/Van Dyke Warren, MI., side into Detroit, Thursday, August 28, 6 pm.
Call 313 530 2777.

Dedicated to families, and, to victims of human trafficking, and, to Molly Bish!

Saturday, April 19, 2014


Humans need hope.

We need healing.

Without both, life is hard.

Easter's 50 days give the evergreen virtue of hope, of possibilities amid struggles and challenges that the trek through life faces.

Faces and faith merge with hope, even healing, that morphing and mending so needed in South Korea when hundreds perish in a ferry capsizing this week, and, problems elsewhere.

The victory of Jesus Christ over death, sin, and a life lived well for the common good soothes souls.

Amid Roman and Judean rule and oppression, people sought hope from an earthly king.  Jesus' kingdom is not of this world, however.  It is beyond us.

We inch along and do what we can to be for and with one another in healing.

We do.

Ever so slowly.

Like the Easter bunny, or empty colored eggs, Christ is risen.  And, the shell is filled with hope and healing.

Happy Easter all fifty days of celebration beyond the 40 of Lent's fasting and praying.

Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Inter-religious Dialogue Good Friday, 11 am, Historic Sacred Heart Church, Roseville, MI., 48066

Join Rev. Dr. Yvette Griffin, Marge Hallman, responding, and more, on "GOOD FRIDAY GRIEF OF JESUS, THE LORD, AND, MOURNING OF MARY, A MOTHER'S, AND MORE ACROSS FAITH TRADITIONS." 586 777 9116.






Tuesday, April 15, 2014


These days before Good Friday and Easter are called Holy Week.

There is a calm and quiet about them..

It is Jesus' time.

Christians recall his suffering, dying and rising to save us from sin and death.

Truth is told by Jesus.

To live.

To love.

To speak truth to power as he did.

One's aim is to get to Heaven by being a saint on earth.

No easy order.

Yet, it is done daily by countless souls.

Friday, April 11, 2014

Silence, Sickness, Authority and God

No longer do I trust in human authority alone.

In God we trust.  That's on currency for all to read. And, to make it meaningful, the late William Cunningham and Eleanor Josaitis, of Detroit's Focus:HOPE would press a penny into the palm of people they made.

With an admonition:  "Remember in whom we trust!"

Perhaps it was around the 80s when authority was put in its place, so to speak.


People no longer seemed to rely on the authority of God. Rebellion ruled.  "Selfies" shined ego!

They resorted to one's own whims, wishes, and desires, following their own versions of truth with a small T!

Of course this has been true throughout human history.

However, a tremendous turn from God to one's own truth and authority became paramount, it seems to me, in the last few decades.

Relegating God to "just in case" ruled.  I believe with my lips but not my lives, some seemed to suggest. My heart was far from the authority of God's Word, for example.

The candid conversion of the late physician, Bernard Nathanson, MD., a pioneer in the abortion industry, is a case in point.

After enormous amounts of abortions at his hand and scalpel, Dr. Nathanson's ways and "authority" turned to God's hands leading and guiding him after the murders of over 175,000 babies.

Anyone of us can rely on his or her own authority alone, sad to admit.

It is insufficient.

When I was ordained a Catholic priest in 1976, the revered John F. Dearden reminded me to be sure that what I preached was "God justice, God's truth," and, not my own.

Wise words.  Well spoken!


God's own.

Now, I more fully  realize that unless I stand up for the most vulnerable "on the edge" human beings, this culture will continue to be sick.

And, we need to imagine a way out of that path placing one's self in the hand of the Creator, and, his authority.