Monday, March 21, 2016

FGO March 2016: I AM I AM

The March FGO was based on this article about a recent Catechism class. The moral of the story is if you teach Catechism class, you won't run out of material For the Good of the Order.

Tuesday, October 13, 2015

FGO October 2015

Audio of the October 13 2015 FGO from Council 13112.
(Magazine I refer to is the October issue of First Things)

Correction to the audio: Mr. Moore does mention marriage, noting that unlike the Catholic Church, Evangelicals believe the Bible allows for divorce and remarriage.

Thursday, September 10, 2015

FGO September 2015: Assumption

The Feast of the Assumption was last month, and I found this related article interesting. I had never even heard of "microchimerism" before, much less seen it in a post about Mary's Assumption. I thought it'd make an interesting FGO. This post is about how quickly I was able to put something together.

I first went to Wiki & Google and browsed a bit, cutting & pasting from a wide assortment of articles, enough to familiarize myself with some main points, such as:

"Microchimerism is the presence of a small number of cells that are genetically distinct from those of the host individual. Most people are born with a few cells genetically identical to their mothers' and the proportion of these cells goes down in healthy individuals as they get older.....Women often also have a few cells genetically identical to that of their children, and some people also have some cells genetically identical to that of their siblings (maternal siblings only, since these cells are passed to them because their mother retained them)."

"Studies have shown that women may harbor cells from their mothers, albeit small amounts, for decades. Couple that with cells from their children, and a remote possibility can be imagined where a fetus may receive cells from their mothers, grandmothers,  and older siblings. A person may be walking around with 4 or more distinct genetic lineages within them."

Then I wrote down a half-dozen or so ideas that would take me from Mommas and Babies to Microchimerism and the Assumption. Not having anything I could read out loud kept my delivery fresh and conversational, and I was done in less than 5 minutes. Part of the fun was talking about pregnancy and microchimerism without giving any clue as to what it might have to do with Catholicism.

Thursday, August 13, 2015

FGO August 2015: Dewfall

A short one, less than 5 minutes.

Here’s a favorite bit from Isaiah 45:

“I am the LORD, there is no other.
I form the light, and create the darkness,
I make weal and create woe;
I, the LORD, do all these things.
Let justice descend, you heavens, like dew from above,
like gentle rain let the clouds drop it down.
Let the earth open and salvation bud forth;
let righteousness spring up with them!
I, the LORD, have created this.”

I like occasions when Scripture refers to rain or dew: I imagine both precipitations would figure prominently in the imagination of anyone living in an arid land.  And I’m guessing, but I bet anytime a prophet figuratively referred to rain or dew, his hearers would reflect on this bit of Exodus:

“Then the LORD said to Moses: I am going to rain down bread from heaven for you. Each day the people are to go out and gather their daily portion…”

And I love the way the bread came down: not in a torrent, but lightly, softly-

“In the morning a layer of dew lay all about the camp,
and when the layer of dew had gone up, fine flakes were on the surface of the wilderness, fine flakes like hoarfrost on the ground.
On seeing it, the Israelites asked one another, “What is this?” for they did not know what it was. But Moses told them, “It is the bread which the LORD has given you to eat.”

It’s especially relevant for Catholics, because Eucharistic Prayer #2 riffs elegantly on that bit of Exodus:

“You are indeed Holy, O Lord, the fount of all holiness.
Make holy, therefore, these gifts, we pray, by sending down your Spirit upon them
like the dewfall, so that they may become for us
the Body and Blood of our Lord Jesus Christ.”

In Exodus, first came the dew. When the dew went up, the miracle bread was present. And at Mass we pray for a similar miracle: that the Holy Spirit will, dew-like, cover our offerings, and shortly after, there will be miracle bread to eat.

Stay fired-up about Jesus and his Church.