Peniel August


“Where Jacob Wrestled With God!

Newsletter of Temenos Catholic Worker

August, 20021

P.O. Box 642656

San Francisco, CA 94164



Journal of An Alien Street Priest:

    As we enter August my mind goes back to the days of growing up and hearing the adults talk of entering the “Dog Days of Summer”, a time of intense heat, thunderstorms, and for us kids a fun time of playing, and chasing fireflies throughout night.

    The “Dog Days of Summer” historically comes from the Hellenic view of the star system. Sirus, ‘”Dogstar” which in Greek mythology, connects with drought, fever, thunderstorms, lethally, mad dogs, and bad luck. 

    With the drought, fire, and disease California finds the Dogstar very present with us.

    And this summer with my injuries of being beaten up I too am experiencing the “Dogstar”, and from this experience, I am learning what St. Ignatius calls the “Cannonball Moments”.

    “Cannonball Moments” are the moments, the events we can not predict or see coming, the times when we find we are simple creatures who are vulnerable, and ultimately have very little control over our lives, and must trust in God. I had my summer planned: surfing, hanging with friends and working, but suddenly all that changed–and I am on a walker, doing exercises, in a lot of pain, and taking it moment by moment.

    St. Ignatius suggests and reminds us of six ways of living with our “cannonball moments”:

1. None of us get to choose a “cannonball moment”. We are not immune.

2. Our decisions are not prophecy–our plans are subject to the “cannonball moment”, for eg. I have a friend who found she has cancer, her life has been turned upside down.

3. The “cannonball” is only the beginning, all else is unknown.

4. “Cannonballs” bring unsuspecting graces for us, for me friends who have gone out of their way to assist and love me. We learn to depend on others, for ultimately we all depend on each other.

5. “Cannonballs” call for surrender.
We ultimately must surrender to God and trust moment by moment.

6. No one can survive the “cannonball” alone.

    Every creature will have “cannonball moments”, until the ultimate one of death.     Every time I walk outside my door, tears come to my eyes as I witness individuals who live on the street, and have no one to be with them in their “cannonball moments’.

    All of us need to move out of our “Tribes,” from computer screens, and our fears to touch the lives of those on the street, and alone in hotels and shelters.

    We need to open ourselves to “Do unto others as you would have them do unto you.” Deo Gratias! Thanks be to God!


    WE ARE BEGGARS! Our work continues. We have volunteers doing outreach on the street each week, and we do counseling on the phone, on Snapchat, and by text. So please consider supporting our ministry.

    You may mail donations to:

Temenos Catholic Worker

P.O.Box 642656

San Francisco, CA 94164


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