January 4, 2016

The Prayer of Pope Francis (Adapted from his speech at the conclusion of the 2014 synod)

Lord, help us to avoid the temptation to hostile inflexibility. Lord, help us to avoid the temptation to treat symptoms and not root causes, to bind wounds without first treating them and curing them. Lord, help us to avoid the temptation to transform bread into a stone and cast it against sinners, the weak and the sick. Lord, help us to avoid the temptation to come down off the Cross, to please the people, to bow down to a worldly spirit instead of purifying it and bending it to the Spirit of the Lord. Lord, help us to avoid the temptation to act as owners or masters of the faith. Lord, help us to avoid the temptation to turn our eyes away from reality.   Lord, help us build a Church that is not afraid to roll up her sleeves to pour oil and wine on people’s wounds. A Church that doesn’t see humanity as a house of glass to judge or categorize people. A Church, one, holy, catholic, apostolic, that is composed of sinners, needful of God’s mercy. A Church that is the true Bride of Christ. A Church that is not afraid to eat and drink with prostitutes […]
October 11, 2015

Sister Aches and Brother Pains

When I wake in the morning, Sister Aches and Brother Pains are there to greet me. Brother Death, sitting on a chair in the corner, gives me a smile and a nod. Sister Aches is dressed in a nun’s long black habit. The thick fabric covers her rotund figure. Her neck seems to be bothering her. Every few minutes, she raises her left shoulder as if to clear some obstruction or unkink a muscle. She bustles about the bedroom, and it seems I can hear her bones creak with each rapid movement. I have no idea what she’s doing. Over at the window, Brother Pains has a flat face, or maybe it’s just so empty of emotion. His gaze is interior. He wears his body like a suit of armor. He is dressed in a power-blue polo shirt and khaki shorts. Out in the car, I head to breakfast. Sister Aches sits next to me in the passenger seat. Behind me is Brother Pains. To his right — I can see him in my rearview mirror — is Brother Death. He smiles and gives me a nod. That night, at basketball, Sister Aches and Brother Pains plod after me, up […]
September 16, 2013

135 North Leamington Avenue, Chicago — where I grew up

February 16, 2013

Yankee hat

February 13, 2013

History Book Club — 20-year book list — 119 books, one of which read twice

Month Book Author March, 1993 Nature’s Metropolis William Cronon May, 1993 Capt. Sir Richard Francis Burton Edward Rice July, 1993 Memoirs U.S. Grant September, 1993 A World Lit Only By Fire William Manchester November, 1993 The Oregon Trail Franics Parkman January, 1994 Homestead William Serrin March, 1994 The Price of Admiralty John Keegan May, 1994 The Great Bridge David McCullough July, 1994 1066 David Howarth September, 1994 Truman David McCullough November, 1994 Out of the Storm Noah Andre Trudeau January, 1995 Plagues and Peoples William H. McNeill
December 30, 2012

“Woven Lives: 100 years in the story of the St. Gertrude faith family” by Patrick T. Reardon

My new book — Woven Lives: 100 years in the story of the St. Gertrude faith family — is a history of my parish, written as part of St. Gertrude’s centennial celebration. It’s a modest, 64-page work, and, alas, isn’t available through amazon.com or from a bookstore or library. However, if you’d like a copy, send me an email at AirVermeer@gmail.com. Include your name and street address, and I’m mail you a copy. Pat Reardon