Wednesday, 26 December 2012

Christmas Day 2012

And lo I went to St. Boniface Church on Christmas Day for the 10:00 a.m. service.

I drove there with my SRQ friend Bob Lewis (a retired Episcopal Priest from Hudson, N.Y).

Behold we encountered Tom Dillon.  Tom was a school teacher in Pittsfield, M A.  His heritage is Roman Catholic, but he frequently attended St. Stephen’s Episcopal Church in Pittsfield during my duration there.

 Tom inherited a condo in Bradenton FL. It is always a pleasure to see him when he comes south from Massachusetts.

It came to pass that another Tom was at Church. He is a splendid semi-retired Roman Catholic Priest who in these days mostly worships in the Episcopal Church.

Tom, Tom, Bob and JMP sat in church  together for the Christmas Day Eucharist.

Two Episcopal Priests – a Roman Catholic Priest – a Roman Catholic educator.  Damn – that’s queer ecumenicism!

The St. Boniface organists being exhausted after three services on Sunday 23rd Dec 2012, and three more on Christmas Eve wisely stayed at home.

The parish found some dollars to employ a guest organist – one Roger Roszell. “By heavens” he was good.

Retired “Priest Associate” Charles Kiblinger presided and preached.  His sermon was excellent even (though his rapid fire delivery is taxing on the ears).

St. Boniface, SRQ "Altar" Dec 2012


In due time on Christmas Day I made my way to the

There I enjoyed a “Christmas Dinner”.

1. Salad

2. Turkey:-  with gravy, green beans, mashed sweet potato, mashed spuds, cranberry etc

3. Key Lime Pie

The food was good, though not great.

The company was excellent.

I enjoyed this dinner with:

 (a) Fred Emrich (a priest now retired) who was my colleague when we served in the Diocese of Western Mass.  Fred was in Greenfield MA.  when I was in Pittsfield MA.

(b)  Diana Clee (Fred’s second wife).  Diana was born of British parents in India. When she was 7 years old they sent her off to England to be educated in a miserable Boarding School for girls.

After school she  married an American man - but was widowed at an early age.

Diana then carved out two careers.  First as a “stewardess” on the late lamented “Pan-Am Airlines”:  then as a very successful Realtor in Greenwich CT.

(c) Joining us was Lee Ysidro.  She was born in Trinidad of Venezuelan parents.

She (1) segued into a career on the stage in NYC. (2) became a stewardess with Pan-Am where she met Diana (3) Married  an Egyptian man who she met in Tunisia (and he died young) (4) retired to SRQ where she reconnected with Diana.

 I live in a small world. It is a world which includes friends from far and near.  

That small world is open to us all.  

I love it!
Lee and jmp

Diana and Lee

Fred and Diana


It was a quiet and lovely 2012 Christmas Day, except that my pooch Penne got no more than a lump of coal from Father Christmas.

For on Christmas Eve when my back was turned she seized a hunk of Morbier cheese from a coffee table at Ben's home.

This was exceptional.  Penne has never before stolen "people food". 

Upon being chastised Penne dropped the cheese.

But the damage was done!

1. The remnant of that bit of cheese had to be "binned" ( as they say in the U.K).

2. Penne's tummy was all upset on Christmas Day on account of the wee bit of cheese she had eaten.

3. By now she is  "ransomed, healed, restored and forgiven"!

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