Archive for May, 2014

May 31, 2014

“The energy of the story of the Visitation evokes and imagery of the best liturgy.  Coming together from different places, different lives, meeting, singing, remembering the stories that feed us, it is like a pregnant womb, a store house of life for the journey.  As they stand at the altar of their lives, they help us remember that our lives are also holy tables, places where our words can evoke hope, where our bodies nourish life, where we bless one another’s continuation on the  road ahead” Sr. Fran Ferder.

This is what it means to be in community, a place where we remember that our lives are of sacred meaning and purpose; a place where we sustained to share this vocation with those who are broken. At our liturgy on Thursday night one young man pulled a knife on another, and I stepped in between them–he put it down–the space became community again.  Community is about being a safe space. Deo Gratias! Thanks be to God!

Even those who acknowledge that our treatment of animals is indeed a great evil may feel that it is, like the other evils in our world, simply a product of human limitations, such as ignorance, pride, selfishness, fear, and so forth.

According to this view, the horror we inflict on animals is a problem, but not a fundamental cause of our problems—and, because it’s a problem for animals, who are less important than us humans, it’s a lesser problem. Dr. Will Tuttle

May 30, 2014

May 30, Joan of Arc, John 16:15-23, “A Quieter Waitng”

“But take heart, I have conquerored the world”

Last night one after another came to pick up food, and most of them I have known for twenty years. Voluteers have come and gone because they could not see the continued suffering, and in reflecting upon that I thought of the lesson I learned through the years–the journey of a Christian is to wait–anticipate the fullness of time. There is value in each person that passes by, and God loves that person immensely, and we are called to love that person and to be quiet, and wait, and in waiting Jesus will conqueror. Deo Gratias! Thanks be to God!

Looking from a variety of perspectives at our animal-based meals, we discover that eating animals has consequences far beyond what we would at first suspect. Like a little boy caught tormenting frogs, our culture mumbles, “It’s no big deal,” and looks away.

And yet the repercussions of our animal-based diet are a very big deal indeed, not only for the unfortunate creatures in our hands, but for us as well. Our actions reinforce attitudes, in us and in others, that amplify the ripples of those actions until they become the devastating waves of insensitivity, conflict, injustice, brutality, disease, and exploitation that rock our world today.Dr. Will Tuttle

May 29, 2014

May 29, “The Ascension”, “Risking All” Matthew 28:16-20

“not sure about. . .risking themselves totally.”

It is hard to give yourself totally to anything. I have spent over thirty years of my life risking everything for ministry, and I can remember twenty years ago beginning to truly let go and risk all.. It is scary to trust in this man–who in his own day much was said about–rebel rouser, devil, and today oh the words people often use–non-repeatable., but when you trust in him you see that there is a life you can would never  have dreamed of–a life full of joy, and meaning, and hope. A life that no amount of money can buy.  The Ascension is about being lifted up in hope, hope in the Crucified One. Deo Gratias! Thanks be to God!

It is well known that animal foods are heavily contaminated with viruses and bacteria such as salmonella, listeria, E. coli, campylobacter, and streptococcus, which can be harmful if not fatal to people, especially given our already overworked immune systems.

The urea in animal flesh also contains toxins. It has furthermore recently been shown that cooked animal flesh contains heterocyclic amines, which are carcinogenic chemicals that form during the cooking process. Thus, by not cooking flesh enough, we may expose ourselves to salmonella, E. coli, and other pathogens, and by cooking it, we end up eating cancer-causing chemicals formed by heating the animal fat. Dr. Will Tuttle

May 28, 2014

May 28, Blessed Margaret Pole Acts 17:15-18:1 John16:12-15 “Evolving”

A young man last night commented he knows a couple of young men who have killed five or six people–and asked me “Why aren’t they on T.V.? I know several people who have murdered a number of people, and they have never been on T.V.. One reason they are not white, upper middle class people, a second is they are done one at a time over time and in parts of Cities most people stay away from.  Our media grabs at the sensational. Our political leaders offer sympathy, but our gun laws are loosening up across the country. 

Someone commented on the post with Pope Francis about how they do not like the Catholic Church, because of its position on women.  I think back many years ago when I came out of how there was no institutional Church that supported queers in ministry.  You see it is not about the institution–it is about our relationship with Jesus, and when the real Jesus gets through–we have healing and wholeness. It was that relationship that saved me, and the institution introduced me to Jesus–like Paul, like all of us there are the positives and the negatives.

We are all evolving, and it is in that evolving that salvation comes to each of us.  It is in that evolving that Christ comes.  And each one of us are called to share our sparks of evolution, and in sharing wholeness comes. Deo Gratias! Thanks be to God!

Eighty percent of grain grown in the U.S. and about half the fish hauled in are wasted to grow billions of animals big and fat enough to be profitably slaughtered, or to produce dairy products and eggs at the high levels demanded by consumers. And over ninety percent of the protein in this grain turns into the methane, ammonia, urea, and manure that pollutes our air and water.

A conservative estimate is that the amount of land, grain, water, petroleum, and pollution required to feed one of us the Standard American Diet could feed fifteen of us eating a plant-based diet. Dr. Will Tuttle

May 27, 2014

There was a group on the street yesterday preaching that “Jesus was coming soon! Repent!”  But our Scripture tells us that judgment is coming in our actions and we see the results–people on the street, rising seas and temperatures, and destruction of our environment.

I met a disabled couple and their four young children, kicked out of where they were staying, and I spent three hours trying to get them housing, but there is a long wait, and they have to be “patient” I was told again and again.  Through a system that has no room due to our greed, we bring judgment upon ourselves. I am haunted by this family.

Through our own actions with human beings and all creatures, through our destruction of the environment, our greed, we are destroying life and judgment is coming.  The hope is that in people who have a sense of the Divine–be it Christian or otherwise that there will be a new creation out of which life will come or judgment will and has come  to this world through our actions–not by God’s. Deo Gratias! Thanks be to God!

“The world is his who can see through its pretensions. What deafness, what stone-blind custom, what overgrown error you behold, is there only by sufferance—
your sufferance. See it to be a lie, and you have already dealt it a mortal blow.”
~ Emerson

Tenderness and Severity

May 26, 2014

Tendernessw and severity unfold in Scripture and in our lives. To what will we testify?  When we face God of what will be sorry for?  The Scripture is full of violence and severity–ie Paul persecuting the Christians–and in his conversion–much tenderness. 

I have experienced more anger, and danger from Christians then I have from those who did not believe.  It is how we humans allow God to enter our lives, mode and change them that makes the difference–it is not about the black and white where God works, but in the grey areas. Dr. Will Tutle sums up how we can truly be free:

To be free, we must practice freeing others. To feel loved, we must practice loving others. To have true self-respect, we must respect others. The animals and other voiceless beings, the starving humans and future generations, are pleading with us to see: it’s on our plate. Deo Gratias! Thanks be to God!

May 25, 2014

May 25, “Travel With Deep Consciousness” I Peter 3:15-18

“Your life is a journey you must travel with deep consciousness of God.”

To travel life with a deep sense of God allows you to perceive God in every creature in life, and with that perception one comes to respect, and seeks to enable each creature to live life to its fullness. Our own needs, our own desires, come second to the welfare of others.  Deo Gratias! Thanks be to God!”

We can see that the three reasons that we eat animal foods—infant indoctrination, social and market pressure, and taste—reinforce each other and create a force field around our food choices that, like a sturdy fortress, resists any incursions.

The walls of the fortress are built of cruelty, denial, ignorance, force, conditioning, and selfishness. Most importantly, they are not of our choosing. They have been, and are being, forced upon us.

Our well-being—and our survival—depend on our seeing this clearly and throwing off our chains of domination and unawareness. By harming and exploiting billions of animals, we confine ourselves spiritually, morally, emotionally, and cognitively, and blind ourselves to the poignant, heart-touching beauty of nature, animals, and each other. Dr. Will Tuttle

Being An Outsider

May 24, 2014

Aldergate Day/ John of Brado, John 15:18-21 “If you lived on the world’s terms, the world would love you as one of its own.. .”

In John Steinbeck’s   The Grapes of Wrath when confronted about why he was pushing people off their land, one man said: . .”I got two little kids, I got a wife. Them people got to eat. .I got to think about my own folks,. .What happens to other folks is their lookout.”

This book stirred up a lot of anger because it pointed out what was going on in our country in the 30’s–“a dog eat dog” world. Make a few changes and the book fits now.  We are eating each other up, we are destroying our selves over money, power. There are high rises going up all around me–high rises for the elite, and I hear the pain of people who fear for their lives, both on and off the street. I hear the same phrase, but in different words, uttered by the gentleman above, in our restaurants, from people when asked about homeless people, and people being kicked out of their apartments. 

We have a choice–we can move from beyond ourselves-or live on God’s terms of loving our neighbor–being equal in the way we treat people, raging against City Hall, the Developers, the Congress, the President, for more equitable housing, food, and health care. In our City alone one out of six goes to bed hungry each night–that is inexcusable.

I choose not to “live on the world’s terms”–but God’s, where do you choose to live?

May 23, 2014


Dorothy Day refused to vote and participate in what she called “a dirty rotten system,” and I have now taken the same point of view.  Guantamo is an illustration of that “dirty rotten system”. 

We are a country that proclaims a judicial system of fairness to all, we believe we are a “light on the hill,” and yet we have imprisoned and tortured fellow human beings in another country and refused to give them a fair trial.  We live in a “dirty rotten system.”

Democrats and Republicans alike play on our fears, and in that playing, they create an enviornment of revenge, hatred, religious and racial prejudice.  They create an enviornment in which we kill innocent civilians in drone attacks and do not give people equal justice, and in so doing we create hatred and anger towards us.

I read an article last week about the military personel at Guantanmo and how they justify what they do by saying they are following orders and their country is always right, Yet they suffer severe mental, emotional, and physical distress. To me this says plenty about the justification of Guantamo.

I love the United States for the freedom, the openess, and the fairness for which she stands, but I deploy the actions of her leaders who have taken those ideals and used them for their own means, and to justify inhumane actions agains human beings.

It is time that we close Guantamo, it is time that the detainees either be freed or given a fair, just and quick trial in the United States. It is time that we call upon everyone to love our neighbor as ourselves. Deo Gratias! Thanks be to God!

May 23, 2014

May 23, “Girolamo Savonarola” “Not Another Day in Guantanamo”

“Friendship”  John 15:12-17 ‘Put your life on the line for your friends.”

It makes people nervous when I call my guys my friends, because friendship connotes a responsibility to care and provide for, it denotes a commitment in which you give away a part of your self.  It is in that giving that new life comes, and I give my life, all my being for my guys, it hurts, it tears me to pieces like the Veleveteen Rabbitt, but it is in giving that one finds life.  

We need to move to be friends with everyone for in so doing we see them as human beings. Today is another day of witnessing against the tortue of Guantamo Bay, a witness agains the imprisonment of “people who have been charged with no crime on a piece of land that is not a part of our country.”

Come be their friend and join us at Powell and Market from 4:30  p.m.-6:00 p.m. and/or write your SenatorRepresenatative, and the President to close Guantanamo.

Deo Gratias! Thanks be to God!

When we contemplate our tastes, we can see how conditioned they actually are. More importantly, though, we can see how utterly unsupportable they are as reasons to commit violence against defenseless, feeling beings. Self-centered craving for pleasure and fulfillment at the expense of others is the antithesis of the Golden Rule and of every standard of morality.. Deo Gratias! Thanks be to God!