Monday, April 06, 2015

Happy birthday, Bonnie!

It's a special day today--Bonnie's birthday--and therefore time for another blog post/note to mark the occasion. Whenever I do these posts, going through old pictures, I find a million that I want to post (well, not a million, but a lot). I know I can't post them all, so here are 10 or 12 specially selected shots from her past.
Here's one of the earliest ones--her passport picture. Born in Spain, she needed a passport to get into the United States.
 Here's a very early shot in Mifflin Township with Grandma and Grandpa Switzer. Note on the back says "1st grandchild--Bonnie S. Switzer"

 Here I am with Bonnie. Kathy's note on the picture says "Bonnie and Daddy (see Bon's haircut?). April '75.
 Bonnie with Kevin Bell--Gaeta, October '78.
 Then-Vice President George H.W. Bush stops in for Bonnie's birthday party (no, actually we were at his birthday party at the home of the U.S. ambassador to Canada).
 Not exactly sure where or when this was taken, but I liked it. Do you remember, Bon?
 At the Pearl Street house with Rory.
Here we are with Bonnie and Rory at their wedding at Faith Bible Chapel, Arvada.
Love this shot of Bonnie and Rory. 
Jono and Alia, our first two grandchildren. We are so proud of these guys and how Bonnie and Rory are raising them.
This is Bonnie's office (not to mention her cat). Her current position is at Goodlife Community Centre in Buderim, Queensland, Australia, where she takes care of many administrative tasks, including editing a quarterly glossy magazine.
 Some time ago, Bonnie began exercising her creative talents painting favorite quotes. This is one that I treasure and have hanging on the wall of my office.
 Eventually this led to her starting her own Etsy shop online. Her paintings are very beautiful and quite popular.
We celebrate you today, Bon. We rejoice with you as we remember the day of your birth with great joy. We are very proud of you and all that you are involved in, and we look forward to seeing you again soon.

Sunday, April 05, 2015

He is Risen, Indeed!

 The tomb is empty. Life has overcome death.
 The Agnus Dei is risen as El Buen Pastor.
  He is risen!
 He is risen, indeed!
 Nature proclaims the new life as it rises from the death of winter into marvelous springtime.
Whether you call it Easter or Resurrection Day or Pasqua or you are just enjoying the new life budding forth in nature, may the Resurrection Life shed abroad on this joyous occasion infuse your being with newness of life and grace and every good thing. May we all experience new life in those areas that are dead or barely living.

Friday, April 03, 2015

Chag Pesach Sameach

To all who celebrate the historical and continuing miracle of Passover, we wish you "Chag Pesach Sameach." Happy Passover.


Sunday, December 21, 2014

Chag Hanukkah Sameach!

Zot Chanukah. As we contemplate the lights on our Hanukkiot on this final day of the festival, let us resolve to carry that light into a needy world in the ensuing days, weeks, months, and year. 

Thursday, November 27, 2014

Thanksgiving 2014

This Thanksgiving, I am of course thankful for all of the beautiful, wonderful, exceptional, blessed things in my life. There is the family—wife, children, grandchildren, parents, siblings, aunts, uncles, cousins, nieces, nephews, in-laws. There are the friends and acquaintances, old and new. There is the roof over our heads, large enough to house not only the two of us but family and friends, as well. The amazing variety of foods and drinks in this world, and the infinite variety of ways to prepare them. The transportation vehicles that take us from here to there and back again. The giant flying machines that whisk us from city to city, state to state, and country to country, over mountains and oceans, all while we eat, sleep, and watch the latest movies or sporting events. The form of government that, at least for the moment, still allows us to make many of our own choices and lead lives relatively free of tyranny.

As I pondered the very idea of thanks and what it means to give thanks, I saw how the idea of thanks so exemplifies the reality of our interconnectedness, as beings. Giving thanks always requires another, one separate from ourselves, another being, whether human or divine. We have explored in times past how various languages imply various shades and subtleties of thanksgiving ( The gratias/gracias/grazie stream of thanksgiving reflects thanks for grace, the grace of God or the gracious, full of grace, full of kindness acts of our fellow human beings. The merci folks of Gallia reflect gratitude (there’s that grace again) for mercy received. The obrigado form indicates that an act worthy of thanksgiving creates an obligation, but one that must be freely realized and returned. Nihonjin speakers also acknowledge an indebtedness whenever they offer arigato. That and the xie xie ni of the “Middle Kingdom” contain a tinge of apology along with the thanks, perhaps reflecting an Asian attitude of humility in language directed toward another. The xie character seems to indicate that the physical act of speaking thanks is itself an act justly required. The spasebo speakers of the frozen north declare “God saves” whenever they give thanks. The Hellenists remember good gifts when eucharistically giving thanks. The descendants of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob reflect their thanks with hands, lifted up and out, in blessing. Todah Rabah. A whole lot of thanks and blessing.

All of these things are obvious between people. Grace, kindness, mercy given, obligation and indebtedness from charitable acts. Giving, receiving, speaking and doing good things. But what of the thanks we give for being, for the creation, for the blood coursing through our veins, for the life-giving breath we breathe, for thought, for speech, for awaking every morning. To whom do we give thanks for these acts of grace, kindness, goodness? To and for whom do we apply our hands in worshipful thanksgiving? To the ultimate You.
On this Thanksgiving, I give grace-and-mercy-received-obligation-indebtedness-creating,-slightly-apologetic-acknowledging-the-good-gifts-of-salvation-received-hands-uplifted-and-offered-in-service THANKS to you and you and ultimate You.
Modeh ani lifanekha...

Friday, July 04, 2014

Happy Independence Day 2014

When in the course of human events, July 4th rolls around, it is time to say...
Happy Independence Day!
To paraphrase some famous Americans, 34 score years ago our forefathers brought forth on this continent a new nation, conceived in liberty and dedicated to the proposition that all men are created equal, and that they have been endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable rights, and that among these are Life, Liberty, and the pursuit of Happiness.
Now we are engaged in a great politico-socio-economic war, testing whether that nation or any nation so conceived and so dedicated, can long endure. May G-d grant us the insight, wisdom, and moral courage to extricate ourselves from the self-destructive morass in which we find ourselves—that we might once more be a shining city on a hill.
May G-d bless us as we bless ourselves by re-discovering and re-committing to the founding principles of this nation that have guided us through 238 years.

2013    2012    2010   2009   2008    2007

Sunday, June 29, 2014

Bonnie's Virtual Gallery of Quotations--Room Two

Bonnie continues to post excellent quotations on Facebook. This is room two. Room one already contains 100 of her favorites.