He is Risen!

Raise your joys and triumphs high!

Praise to Thee by both be given,
Thee we greet triumphant now,
Sing, ye heavens, and earth reply,

And on the third day, He rose again.

Christos aneste! May God bless you all as we celebrate His glorious triumph.


Consolation of Tradition

The elder walked up to the altar and blew out the last candle.

He sat down.

Ubi caritas et amor
Deus ibi est.

The choir sang through the hymn, hidden upstairs, their voices pierced the great silence with sharp shards of glory.

Saecula per infinita saeculorum. Amen.

Everyone walked out of the sanctuary. Silent. I held my little brother's hand, he smiled at me, and we maintained the silence until we reached the cars.

The Maundy Thursday service has been our family's tradition for years now. Every year we take the half-hour drive down to Pasadena, to Lake Avenue Church. Every year, we leave the service in silence, participating with hundreds of other people.

I love our family traditions. In a world where we are on the everlasting search for something new (and consequently "better"), it is always so comforting to fall back on tradition. Not just my family's tradition, the tradition of the Christian Church for hundreds of years past. The solemnity of the service, the taking of the bread and wine, walking out in complete silence at the end. We don't do this in everyday life. It is a beautiful, powerful reminder of the holiness of these few days.


It's here!

Fragrant fruit blossoms, the hum of busy bees, emerging lavender, and opening snapdragons. My not-so-little brother and I planted our gardens yesterday - precious time together. His infectious laughter, as our cat chased our big labrador dog, the warm sun, then the shade of my floppy hat, freshly turned dirt on my hands. And then the small rows of little plants: chiles, squash, tomatoes, pansies, rosemary, and sage. A triumphant smile from my little brother, then away with the gardening tools.



St. Patrick's Day

I arise today
Through a mighty strength, the invocation of the Trinity,
Through the belief in the threeness,
Through confession of the oneness
Of the Creator of Creation.

I arise today
Through the strength of Christ's birth with his baptism,
Through the strength of his crucifixion with his burial,
Through the strength of his resurrection with his ascension,
Through the strength of his descent for the judgment of Doom.

I arise today
Through the strength of heaven:
Light of sun,
Radiance of moon,
Splendor of fire,
Speed of lightning,
Swiftness of wind,
Depth of sea,
Stability of earth,
Firmness of rock.

Christ with me, Christ before me, Christ behind me,
Christ in me, Christ beneath me, Christ above me,
Christ on my right, Christ on my left,
Christ when I lie down, Christ when I sit down, Christ when I arise,
Christ in the heart of every man who thinks of me,
Christ in the mouth of everyone who speaks of me,
Christ in every eye that sees me,
Christ in every ear that hears me.

I arise today
Through a mighty strength, the invocation of the Trinity,
Through belief in the threeness,
Through confession of the oneness,
Of the Creator of Creation.

- Selections from St. Patrick's Breastplate

And a Gaelic blessing:

Deep peace of the running wave to you,

Deep peace of the flowing air to you,

Deep peace of the quiet earth to you,

Deep peace of the shining stars to you,

Deep peace of the gentle night to you,

Moon and stars pour their healing light on you,

Deep peace of Christ the light of the world to you.

May you all have a blessed St. Patrick's day!


From My Philosophy Book

Shouldn't the universe, life, and, especially, consciousness cause a sense of deep wonder within? Do we take this mystery for granted simply because we are used to it? Should we not sit like little children before the wonder of the universe and ask fundamental questions?

- Louis Pojman, Philosophy: The Pursuit of Wisdom

I love that imagery, sitting like children and wondering. It is a position of humility, forgetting our adult-ness, back to eagerly asking questions simply for the sake of it. Not for good grades, not for a degree, just wanting to know. Child-like, just as CS Lewis says.


It's "Just Wight"

"We are looking for the human being behind the roster of activities and grades. We are looking for those who can let down their guard just a bit to allow others in. We are looking for people whose egos won't get in the way of learning, students whose investment in ideas and words tells us--in the context of their records--that they are aware of a world beyond their own homes, schools, grades and scores."

From the Dean of Admissions at Pomona Claremont College, you can read the whole article here.

When we were little, my Dad would swing my youngest sister in the air and tickle her. He'd playfully look at her adorable round stomach and ask her, "Are you just chunks? Or just right?"

Jacqueline would reply with a huge smile on her face, "I'm just WIGHT!" It's one of our family signature phrases now. We looked until we found the church that was just wight, we found the circle of friends who were just wight.

And now I have found it. The "just wight" college. Just 15 minutes away from home, just wonderful philosophy of education, just 15 students per class, just one of the top liberal arts colleges in the US. Oh, and did I mention the price is almost just free? Yep.

Pomona College, Classics would definitely be part of my major, and I'm considering majoring in Philosophy as well. And Linguistics! Hebrew, Homer, and Hume in college? I couldn't dream of anything better. And as an extra, Claremont's ballroom dance team has won Nationals six years in a row.

This is definitely just wight.



These past two months have been hard. Really hard. Sometimes I still can't believe they're over. Some part of me still leaps with fear when the phone rings... hoping, praying it's not more news from the hospital. But it's over now. Last month, I saw all three dear ones - uncle, sister, father - all who had been so, so close to death; together, laughing, smiling. Alive.

Blogging is now back up in my hobbies list (well, it's always been there, just not the time). As for more news, I've decided on a college (more on this later), am taking 4 - new- college classes, and enjoying every moment of now.

Go mbeannaĆ­ Dia duit.


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