Showing posts from February 17, 2019

Cambridge, MA connection in Sarasota FL!

My ministry as Rector at St. James's, Porter Square, MA was enriched by two terrific colleagues (they happen to be married to each other),  The Revd. Laurie Rofinot, and Patrick G. Michaels.

Patrick "Pat" was (and is) the minister of music par excellence.  He taught me so much.  Laurie joined us as the staff member for Christian Education.

Pat is enjoying a sabbatical leave.  As part of that leave he and Laurie are spending a week at Ft. Myers Beach, and will take time to explore the Everglades.

But, before Ft. Myers Beach,  they spent a night in Sarasota, so that we could have a joyful reunion.

On Friday 22nd we "visited" at my home before they took me out for a wonderful dinner.  We were at one of the most authentic  Italian Restaurants in town (Cafe Baci) - and we raved at the wonderful food.

This morning I was the host for breakfast at Sarasota's  Amish/Mennonite restaurant  "Der Dutchman".  The breakfast buffet abounded in delicious and greasy &qu…

PLEASE take 13 minutes to watch this powerful video. PRETTY PLEASE

Please take 13 minutes to listen..... this most powerful, honest, truth telling and healing address by Washington Post columnist Michael Gerson, delivered at the Washington National Cathedral last Sunday, 17th February.

PRETTY PLEASE AGAIN!  IT'S DAMN GOOD STUFF  for many reasons, and in particular for those of us who live from time to time with the black dog of depression. 

As Mr. Gerson says, we are those who are " Staking (y)our life on the rumour of grace".

Here is the video.  It spoke deeply to me!  Watch it.  Pretty please again!

Thanks to Noel B for the tip off on this

Maybe God Is Testing Your Faith

I have an acquaintance who is  a member of one of Sarasota's largest Fundamentalist/ Evangelical churches.

This man is a gentle, decent and sweet man.  There is nothing not to like about him.

He and his wife have a son who last year was admitted to one of the most prestigious engineering/aeronautical Colleges in Florida. Kudos to this young man.

Two days ago I asked my acquaintance how his son was progressing in his academic studies.  Dad told me that his good son was struggling in some areas of study -  especially calculus, and had texted his father for help.

The father, my acquaintance, told me that he had texted his son back to say (in so many words)  "Pray and trust God. God opened the door for you to be at that school, and he (God) must have his reasons for you to be there. As for your difficulties with calculus, maybe God is testing your faith".

"Bloody hell"  as we might say in England.  This is exactly the theology which drove me away from the evangelical th…


I am to have a C-T scan on Tuesday 19th at 10:30 a.m.   The appointment was arranged by the staff at my Vascular Doctor's office, whose print-out specified FASTING.

This made me grumpy. Wot,  no early morning coffee?  Wot,  no breakfast. Grumps and yet more grumps.

A staff member at Sarasota Radiological Associates ( the clinic at which I'll have the procedure) called this morning to remind me of the appointment.

She said "Remember to fast, no food or drink after three hours before the C-T Scan". 

Whoop dee do!  I'll be able to have my 4:15 a.m. and 5:30 a.m.coffees.  I'll be able to enjoy my 6:30 a.m. breakfast. 

Life is yet  again wonderful for this dyed in the wool, routine obsessed old bachelor!  No more grumps!

Thinking of Penne - two years on.

It was two years ago (Feb 17th)  that I said a sorrow-filled good-bye to my darling Penne, a friend for many years.

Oh what a darling she was.  She liked other people  (especially my friends Bob L, Den N, and Ed G.)   She did not care for other dogs.

I had to say good-bye to Penne  when the pain from the fused discs in her spine made her comfort impossible.

I cried for three days after her death.

Then came my dear Greyhound Ben. He was with me for a few months.

Ben was a good pal.  I can still feel his gentle nudge on my left hand as  we set out on our walks.  But his separation anxiety was so awful (and destructive) when I left him alone.  After a few months with me,  Ben was re-homed by the Racing Dog Rescue people in a home with another Greyhound where is is doing so well.

Next came Izzy a Catahoula Leopard Dog, also with me for but a few months.  

We bonded deeply and she would still be with me, save for the fact that she saw my female cat as prey and was determined to do her harm.

Izzy, …