SAINT OLGA

SAINT OLGA
MY GREAT GRANDMOTHER, SAINT OLGA, PATRON SAINT OF CONVERTS

Saturday, December 17, 2016

WHAT I AM WATCHING NOW (SPOILER ALERT!)

Florence  Foster Jenkins
(nee Narcissa Florence Foster)
1868-1944

I don't require what you might traditionally call "entertainment" these days, as I find certain types of WORK to be my happiest compulsions; things like genealogy research which leads so naturally into historical research, and the making of hats for the homeless...or the occasional cold mail delivery lady. Writing is terrible work, and I just hate it, but I can't seem to get away from it as it also entertains me, in a grim fashion.

Having been given a television during the last year...and quite a large one (to accommodate my failing vision), I DO watch several programs, but I can't seem to generate much interest in anything more than the news channels, and I watch them all, even Faux News Channel, which seems to give credibility to some incredible things and which gives me anxiety, so that channel gets short shrift from me. Everything else, though, as long as people aren't arguing loudly over one another, I will "watch." Actually, the television might as well be one huge radio because I can't bear to just SIT there and watch it. I must be doing something else besides.

Crochet, painting and house cleaning are good accompaniments, except when doing dishes. I have to keep turning off the water to catch the drift of what's being discussed, now and then.

It goes without saying that there are certain PBS programs that are sacrosanct, and I watch them as if I am in a movie theatre; enrapt in the story line and watching every movement in the actors' faces, as if I am one of those human lie detectors I've heard about, the ones who watch the micro movements beneath the skin of a person's face and can tell when they're lying. When Downton Abbey finished its final season, I felt as if a best friend had died. There was so much about that series that I appreciated!

The beauty of the surroundings, the stately movement of time that became less stately over the long haul and more herky jerky over the landscape of what I consider to be a bad bit of historical geography. Anything later than 1925 is on shaky ground with me. Everything became so coarse after that time, while at the same moment congratulating itself that everything was becoming modern.

The grand dowager, Lady Grantham, if you haven't guessed, was my favorite character, and she took something of me with her when she disppeared from my weekly ritual of Downton Abbey worship. She represented the old guard which, to me, seemed very beautiful and lovely in many of its habits.

Recently, however, I was given a discount coupon from my internet carrier so that I could watch a pay-on-demand movie for free. I could have watched one in "high definition" and used up the whole $6.00 THAT way, but instead I decided to watch two movies in "standard def" so that I could have a double feature on an especially painful evening when I didn't have the energy to crochet or write. I got the first movie for free and then paid only $5.00 for the second one, which means each one cost $2.50 (in my mind, anyway.)

As luck would have it, I had snacks in the house, which is a rare thing. I typically eschew anything that isn't real food; that is to say, bread, eggs, fruits, veggies, meat, beans, nuts, seeds, filtered water. This year, when a friend called me from the grocery store and asked me what I wanted, I asked for "goodies" to share with any of the other old lady neighbors who may drop by. It's usually just my friend Ruby, but you never know. Anyway, I had PIE. It wasn't a very good pie, as it turned out, because it had NONFAT MILK in it, which makes me dreadfully sick, but I didn't know about the nonfat milk until it was too late. Anyway, I got to have my movie night with pumpkin pie that would not blow up inside me until a few hours later.

The movie blew up immediately, however. Forever the anglophile, I chose BRIDGET JONES'S BABY as the first feature. Never mind that the starring actress is actually an American. She did a fair job of ACTING as a Brit in the first film, so I thought she'd be good in this sequel.

Mind you, I am not one of those people that hate sequels. I will give them a chance, especially since I always have trouble remembering the FIRST film of the series, so I don't usually catch the little bumbles. If I happen to be sharp enough to catch a flub in the sequel, I yell to no one in particular, "continuity!" as if I was still in the movie business, watching to make sure that a 1960's timepiece didn't show up in a scene that was supposedly from the 1940's! The dog reacts in amusement whenever I talk to myself like this. He thinks his little human has gone mad...or something.

So, Bridget Jones's Baby immediately slapped me in the face with the most vulgar language and innuendo I could possibly imagine, even to the not-so-vague references to the size of a man's genitals, while all her girlfriends kept telling her, in the most chipper way, that she needed to have sex. This is where I learned that, while the first movie ended on a happy note that led us all to believe that Bridget was, finally, ending up with the equally adorable Mr. Darcy, it had not actually worked out with them, and they'd called it quits after 10 years together.

In this second movie Bridget is the head of a similar department in which she had suffered while juggling her boss and Mr. Darcy in that first movie. She has a vulgar sidekick who is the on-screen interviewer for their news program. Said chipper sidekick  pulls Bridget away for a girls weekend at a spa, supposedly, but has actually booked them into a yurt at some muddy rock festival where extremely short blue jean cutoffs are the costume of choice, despite the grim and continual rain.

Now, mind you, Bridget is, by this time, 43 years old, we are told, and the bloom is definitely off that rose. She's lost that bungling sweetness we loved about her in the first film. The camera keeps zooming in on her tight and trim upper thighs where they meet her bum, perhaps to keep us from looking at her face that wears a pained and rigid expression through most of the film. Or perhaps the cameraman got distracted.

I would suspect botox, except that an entire field of terrified wrinkles moves across her cheek bones whenever she mistakenly makes an expression. You could see those micro-expressions from outer space. I'm not being mean. Wrinkles are lovely when one is SMILING, but I can't tell you what to call that expression that happens on her.

It goes from bad to worse. In an extremely awkward set of scenes, she has sex with a man at the rock festival and then sex with her ex, Mr. Darcy, and ends up preggers, having to string along the both of them until they can figure out who is the father. (She won't submit to an amniocentesis test, with that long needle, and I don't blame her a bit.)

The movie slams from one nauseating scene to another, something like a distressed boat on the high seas during a deep sea fishing trip that's gone bad, with the audience mourning dear little Bridget who has obviously died before the movie began, and everyone is vomiting from sea sicknesses and sorrow.

Actress Emma Thompson puts in a highly credible performance as Bridget's gynecologist and is wryly funny despite the lukewarm jokes they make her say. She's a trooper, that one, and it was a relief to see her every time she popped up.  In fact, she may have saved our lives.

The ONLY laugh I got out of the whole movie was when dear Mr. Darcy was trying to carry this balloon of a pregnant woman through the streets of London whilst in labor. His facial expressions were priceless. The second man meets up with them halfway to the hospital, at which point carrying Bridget becomes a two-man job. We could have used a few more good men to carry this film.

Eventually, while giving birth, Bridget realizes she's still in love with Darcy and holds his hand with both of hers, leaving the other guy to just deal with it on the periphery. It was a clunky, heavy scene, with closeups of the hands involved. 1940's, anyone?

So, finally, I have arrived at my POINT.  Our modern world continues to express surprise that women want love, devotion, and family ties, NOT free-wheeling sexual encounters in yurts at rock concerts. We don't want to wait until we're 43 to have babies and get married. Careers, while wonderful and captivating, simply do not replace what we really want. We are biologically programmed for partnership, love and family. God created us for one another, and we keep pretending that it isn't necessary or that we can put it off until our FORTIES, or, indeed, forever...just fornicating our lives away until we're too old to do otherwise.

The developed world keeps fighting biology. Our prime baby making years are between the ages of 15 and 25, which makes sense, given that we are born with every egg we shall ever have. The older we grow, the older the eggs, and the more chance for birth defects or infertility. Believe me, I have heard all the reasons why couples shouldn't marry young or have children young, but the proof is in the pudding. What we are doing now does not work and is just plain sad.

The bleak and sodden love story that is BRIDGET JONES'S BABY is, in my mind, a cautionary tale, at best. Mostly, it is a bad movie because it is inauthentic. It tries to push concepts that do not work in real life. There are no happy feelings at the end of this movie.

Modern ideas about sex, love, marriage, children and abortion are all engineered and fueled by our hyper-capitalistic society, the corporate obsession with money. In short, it all boils down to GREED, but those of us suffering under the consequences of this soul-killing way of looking at the most important aspects of life are not even the people that BENEFIT from the modern philosophies about family, sex, etc. CORPORATIONS are the beneficiaries of this sort of cultural expression. If the corporations can keep us slaving away underneath them, (making slave wages), then the corporations and the CEOs at the top of the heap can benefit. Oblivious to the way that we are being used, movies like BRIDGET JONES'S BABY act like the Nazi propaganda films, trying to get us all heated about our "right" to kill our children or to put off conceiving for so long that children don't enter into the picture or there are damn few of them.  Bridget Jones is a success!  She is the boss at the news studio, churning out entertainment news, making the guy at the top of the heap very wealthy...and she can STILL have a baby, even though her eggs are geriatric. See, people? We can have it all.

Frances Foster Jenkins is also a movie about love, based upon a true story about a socialite who adored classic music and wanted to sing, sing, sing, but she had a tin ear and the vocal chords of a drunken raptor. I loved that movie, and I don't want to ruin it for you because it gives the payoff that Bridget Jones's Baby never could. I hope you see both movies and you can make your own comparisons.

God bless us all.

Silver Rose



Friday, December 16, 2016

LEARNING HOW TO PRAY FOR OTHERS

Elderly woman in wheelchair...just watching the world pass her by

I am reading my notice of income increase from the Social Security Administration.

Last year I did not get any raise in income whatsoever, despite the fact that my cost of living skyrocketed. Goods and services became more expensive, I became more ill and NEEDED more goods and services...like food and medicine and a thousand other things. Where will the money come from?

This year, I got a whopping big increase.  This year, I will be receiving $5.10 per month more than LAST YEAR, when I got no increase at all.  Yes, five dollars and ten cents a MONTH.  It is humiliating.

I am gradually going blind with macular degeneration and need eyeglasses. I haven't seen a dentist in more than 10 years.

This year, I need a new rollator walker, motorized scooter, wheelchair, electric bed and recliner to lift my almost useless legs. Can't get any of those things with my income. "The government" doesn't pay for them, either.

The cost of living increases for the elderly and disabled are based upon the cost of things that we cannot afford to buy....like new cars. Food doesn't factor into it at all. You get the drift.

I am not alone. Far from it. Almost 80% of the poor in America who receive entitlement income are elderly and/or disabled. Less than 7% are able bodied adults. Mean people are fond of criticizing all those people who are "working the system." The other grannies and I look at one another and wonder who the hell they're talking about.

My whole life, I worked very hard. I started at age 11, babysitting for various families in a huge apartment complex in the San Fernando Valley after my father abandoned the family in his bright red convertible car with big fins. It looked like a boat, sailing away down the freeway. By that time, he was well on his way to becoming very very wealthy and, although he promised me an allowance if I made "As" on my report card, I made the A's but never saw an allowance. I knew, even then, I would have to work if I wanted anything in my life.

So, I began babysitting, and my mother stole my babysitting money AND the pennies and nickles out of my pink plastic piggy bank, as well as the silver dollars that I had been saving in my sock drawer. (Wish I had those silver dollars now!)

By the time I was 15, I was working as a maid in a small motel near our house where we had moved after leaving the apartment complex, with the creditors close on our heels. I was already so stressed, I was smoking, just like my mother, about a pack a day of Marlboro's, which is where my money went, for the most part. I had to hide my wallet because she continued to steal from me.

I continued to make the A's, went to boarding school, went to night school, went to summer school and graduated at age 16 - a year early than scheduled. Shortly thereafter, I left home, on foot, as it turns out, because my mother also stole my car. She invented some kind of really weird story that I had been spending my college money on groceries for a COMMUNE, of all things. I have yet to even SEE a commune in my lifetime. It was a calculated lie to encourage my father to wrench my used Mustang out from under me and give it to my sister, who would drive my mother around, since mother's car had broken down.

Immediately I went to work as a live-in housekeeper for an old man and his two sons who were both a couple years older than me, but I lied about my age, I was so desperate for work and a place to live. Eventually, the old man fired me because I served rice pilaf with steak, and "EVERYONE knows that you eat baked potato with steak." (The lack of a mother in the house was apparent.)

Moving to Southern California, I spent some time homeless, but always gravitated toward WORK, toward supporting myself. FORTUNATELY, I had graduated high school a year early, thanks to the summer school, the night school, and doubling up on my academic credits on my last year of high school. I graduated a year early and went out into the work place with a high school diploma. It proved to be the minimum required but nowhere near what I needed, in the long run.

I moved many times, working for the Scientologists, working for insurance companies, working in the entertainment industry. I wrote television treatments at night and worked as a secretary during the day. I had a clothes designing business in a shop I manned during the weekends, and a jewelry business, and a ceramics business, always working at least two jobs at a time, desperate to never be homeless again.

My father was a multi-millionaire television writer and refused to help me, except to say that I was in his will and "when I die, you're gonna be rich, kid." As it turns out, one of his many women took him to a strange attorney after he got Alzheimer's and had me written out of the will!

In the early years, when I was about 20, I asked to borrow $200 between jobs once and he just SCREAMED at me on the telephone. I asked for help when the Scientologists locked me out of my apartment the day after I paid the rent.  I was homeless and needed somewhere to go with my baby in my arms, and he refused to let us live with him, then he spent the rest of his life criticizing me to anyone who would listen that he just didn't understand why I didn't raise my son instead of "letting" my ex-husband do it. He lied to save his own reputation.

Mind you, there was no reason to reject me. I didn't drink or take drugs. I wasn't a thief or a prostitute. I wasn't a jailbird. I was intelligent, I was motivated, and I was a hard worker. I was a tough cookie...but there is only so much a tough cookie can do when no one cares about you.

Despite becoming ill in my early 20's and fighting numerous inherited illnesses and constant pain, I worked. I paid taxes. I worked. I did "the right thing." I missed a lot of days, due to chronic illness, but I did the best I could. My numerous sick days cost me many jobs, but I just kept crawling onto the next job. This went on for my entire life and now, here I sit, looking at my newly received notice of income increase for 2017. Five dollars and ten cents a month.

I have been married, but did not marry well, as it turned out, thanks to some naivete on my part. Some friends my age are doing much better than I am because of marrying well. MANY grannies are in my spot, though. Those of us with rotten families are almost completely isolated, which is why I am the "accidental" hermit.

I DO have a few very kind Catholic friends who do what they can do, but none of them supply the rapidly increasing list of very expensive medical equipment and adaptive furniture that I need, nor can they be expected to pay dental bills or buy me eyeglasses. After all, I am not their family.

Occasionally, someone will learn of the difficulties and donate, but then proceed to boss me around and tell me what to do with my life, how, when and why. I have thought of taking down that donate button more often than you know. The price that people extract for the money is just humiliating.

I've spent my whole life doing what I was supposed to do. I've spent my whole life paying taxes, carrying my weight, holding my own.

Five dollars and ten cents a month. Is this all I'm worth? Last year, I got nothing. Are they trying to squeeze us gradually, on and off, until we give up and die?

The wealthy pay nothing close to the percentage of our income that we pay into Social Security. They pay LESS THAN 1 percent into it, while the rest of us pay as much as 14% of our income into it. The reason why is because of the CAP on payment into Social Security. Anyone who makes more than about $116,000 a year will not pay a single cent of Social Security tax on any income over and above that $116,000 a year.

If the cap on contributions into Social Security were to be lifted, granny and grandpa could receive TWICE what they receive now, and there would STILL be enough Social Security benefits to last until the sun burnt out.

Meanwhile, men like Donald Trump live on gold plated furniture and poop on a gold plated toilet, washing their hands and brushing their teeth at a gold plated faucet. He is FAMOUS for not paying his workers and having to be sued to get him to pay even a portion of salaries due. He is FAMOUS for his bogus "Trump University" which taught nothing and was just another scheme to make money off his name. Thieving, stealing, lying and stomping on the poor little guy is how Donald Trump has made his fortune. He lies, he cheats, he steals, and, not only does he get away with it, but he ends up being the president of our United States through some quirk of American policy that allows someone to "win" the presidency while LOOSING by more than 2 million votes! Then he lies about it and claims that he won "in a landslide!" He violates women, brags about it (on audio tape, no less), and STILL has people defending him and calling the women who come forward to further prove it "LIARS."

We live in a very evil world. Fortunately, however, the Lord loves the poor, and I can feel his love for me. A very kind and very wise confessor once told me that, because I have been subjected to such a mountain of abuse (some of it mentioned here), I am in the perfect position to pray for and work for justice for others who ALSO need an advocate. He encouraged me to use my own personal injustice to fuel my prayers for others who ALSO do not get justice.

I do my best to stand up for the poor...not just MYSELF...no...for all the elderly and disabled poor grannies. I am not the only granny who got FIVE DOLLARS AND TEN CENTS A MONTH raise this year. There are thousands of us....maybe millions.

I ask you also to pray for the grandmas and the grandpas who are being treated with such disrespect and disdain...who DESERVE an increase of more than FIVE DOLLARS AND TEN CENTS A MONTH, after a lifetime of working and paying into the system, being good citizens and doing the right thing.

In a bizarre sense, the many indignities to which I have been subjected were a blessing from the Lord...a blessing that gave me a ministry and a fuel, and a gritty strength that probably could not be given to me otherwise.

There are some people who do not want me to advocate for the poor in America. They demonstrate contempt for the poor, call them names and cast aspursions on their characters. One woman called me names because I see Donald Trump for who he is and because I have a donation button on my blog! She lives off the support of her ex-husband and doesn't have the disabilities, but calls me names because I ask for help.  Honestly, there are those who don't wish to give help but hate you because you try to help yourself! Many of these people call themselves Christians, which I find horrifying.

I intend to follow the instructions of that wonderful confessor and stand up for all of the people who are suffering the injustices of the world.  I stand up for all the other grannies and grandpas, all the disabled and the vulnerable. I am not going to stop advocating for the poor, even though it is humiliating at times.

The disabled and elderly deserve the respect of age, pain and effort. They deserve more than FIVE DOLLARS AND TEN CENTS A MONTH. I don't care what cockamamey table they use to justify this ridiculous amount. It is wrong. Just wrong.

I pray for them. And I pray for people like Donald Trump who will have to pay for his lies and his crushing of the poor.

What a mess our world is in.  What a mess.  I have to stop watching the news. It just makes it worse.

Silver Rose

Monday, December 12, 2016

FAKE NEWS

R

Proverbs 19:9
A false witness will not go unpunished, and
he who breathes out lies will perish



My entire childhood and young adulthood, my mother and grandmother insisted that we were part Native American. The funny thing is, I could never find the Native American link, no matter how hard I searched genealogy records. Then my sister and I had our genealogy done, and we discovered that we didn't have one iota of Native America blood. None. No "Indian Princess," no Sacajawea, no Cherokee maiden...nothing. Nada.

The first thing I have always told genealogy clients is, "your grandmother lied to you." Little did I realize how true that was when I found out things about my OWN grammy that I wish I had not known. She was my beloved Grammy, and she lied about my mother and aunt having a half sister, robbing them of the opportunity to get to know that sister until long after she was dead. (Prior to marrying my grandmother, when my grammy was away at nursing school in Denver, my grandfather had had an affair with a young woman, and they had a love child, etc.)

I always wondered why my grandfather's headstone in the Old Union Cemetery said "FATHER" on it in big letters but was paid for by someone whose name I did not recognize and no one could tell me who she was. EDITH LAIRD. Who was Edith Laird? It took many years of digging. Then I made my enormous family file available to the public on the internet and eventually received a phone call from my 1/2 first cousin, EDITH LAIRD'S daughter. Having the truth from a reliable source opened the way to my finding the proof of the truth.

The Lord detests lying lips,
But he delights in people who are trustworthy.
Proverbs 12:22

The internet has been a huge boon to my genealogy research, but it can also be the source of vile lies, such as in the case of FAKE NEWS SITES that invent Incendiary, scandalous and dangerous stories. As the result of one such ludicrous fake news item, some misguided man recently went into a pizza parlor with a loaded gun, intent on freeing the children that were being held by Hilary Clinton as part of a child trafficking ring! Yes, it's laughable to most of us that anyone would actually believe something so stupid, much less grab their gun and act on it, but this is why inventors of fake news make the big bucks.

The most important thing to remember, from genealogy research to the stories that we spread around the internet is that we have a responsibility to identify THE TRUTH. The only way you can be sure to do that is to ascertain THE SOURCE of the information. The closer the source of the information to the original actors, the more sure one can be that what we are hearing is true, provided, of course, that the original actors have not lied themselves, in which case witness evidence such as newspaper articles, church records; birth, death and divorce records; and other evidenciary sources that are not easily faked are invaluable tools in the search for TRUTH.

When I ask someone for the source of some salacious story, I usually get one of two answers. Either they send me a link to someone's blog or manufactured "news" site, or they cite some political figure whose acquaintance with the truth is famously tenuous. The further away from the agencies and actors of the story, the less reliable is the story. FOR INSTANCE: If I say that Donald Trump is a male chauvinist pig, that is just an opinion and cannot be relied upon as truth. If I submit as proof an audio tape in which we HEAR Donald Trump making vulgar, salacious and disgusting comments about women, THAT is true source information. When a dozen women come forward to give testimony that bolsters my OPINION that Donald Trump is a male chauvinist pig, my case is further strengthened. This is how one builds credibility.

Eloquent lips are unsuited to a Godless fool,
How much worse lying lips to a ruler!
Proverbs 17:7

This is what I have to do when researching a person's family line. More often than not, every fact about every person in the family tree has conflicting information attached to it. Learning to recognize the most credible source has taken years of research experience. I have to obtain information from people closest to the facts, and hope that they actually know what they're talking about and are not just spouting lies their grandmother told them. (I can't tell you how many women have lied about their ages over the years, for instance. Even their children don't know the truth, at times.)

If this sounds like work, it is. If you're too busy to fully research a scandalous story before spreading it, then you shouldn't spread it at all. It is tempting to spread a juicy story that you hear. I don't know why human beings love to spread bad news, but we do. It is one of the temptations of Satan and most of us have given in to it at least once in our life.

Here's the really bad news: If you spread a lie, then you are equally as responsible for that lie as the person who told it to you, especially if you have done nothing to research the veracity.

If we become Christian and are serious about it, we learn that unrepentant lying is a bar to entering heaven. We learn that lies belong to Satan, the father of lies.


You are of your father the Devil, and your will is to do your
father's desires; He was a murderer from the beginning
and has nothing to do with the truth, because there is no
truth in him. When he lies, he speaks out of his own
character, for he is a liar and the father of lies.
John 8:44





Truthfulness is the cornerstone of Judeo Christian morality, taking its prominent place in the ten commandments that:

Thou shalt not bear false witness.

Lying about another person is abhorrent to the Lord. Giving false witness against another person causes harm to that person, in their character, reputation, or legal standing. In the most extreme cases, obviously, it could even lead to a person's death, in the instance of giving false witness in a criminal case in which the punishment could be the death penalty. Lying hurts people. Lying belongs to Satan, yet we have become inured to a constant stream of lies entering our eyes and ears.

I provide the following links to background information about fake news sites and related topics:


Why are some people creating websites that LOOK like real news sites but only provide incendiary lies? According to a recent interview with a fake news blogger that aired on CNN, money is the motive. The more scandalous the headline, the more views ("hits") a website gets. The more "hits" a website gets, the more money the website owner receives from the ads that are splashed across it.

Filthy lucre, once again, draws people into hell by encouraging them to lie.

In the meantime, believers pump up their egos by imagining they are specially privy to secrets that "the government" is trying to disguise from the world, thereby making the reader special. This egotistical desire to be special in the eyes of others is similar to Satan's desire to be as powerful as the Lord, to abrogate to himself certain powers that belong to our Lord and Savior.

The lips of the righteous know what finds favor,
 but the mouth of the wicked only what is perverse.
Proverbs 10:32

Promoting false stories about groups of people are just as damaging as lying about an individual. Not only does it cause scandal and discomfort of heart to other people, but it inflames the ego of the person spreading the wild story.

For instance, an acquaintance told me last week that the government is hiding alien beings and secretly working with the aliens to move everyone to Mars because we are ruining our planet. She believes this flapdoodle because she saw it on some fantasy-based production regularly found on the so-called "History Channel."

When I asked her the names of the people exposing this fabulous story she could not tell me. I asked her if she even knew the credentials of the people producing this bit of fantasy. Of course, she did not. She said she didn't care about credentials, which is the same thing as saying one does not care about the truth.

I tried to approach her from the logical side of things. I asked her why the mainstream media, who LOVE to uncover conspiracies, did not report any of these things. She claimed that all of the mainstream media are part of the conspiracy against all the people in the world from knowing the "truth."

This woman talks endlessly about being sincere about Christianity, about what a lover of God she is and how all she wants to do is His will, yet she has no interest in Truth. Likewise with Christian history. She has no interest in that either, except where some television program tries to alter Christian history with vulgar imaginings about the supposed sex life of Jesus. Again, the kind of fare in which "The History Channel" specializes.

He chose to give us birth through the word of truth,
that we might be a kind of firstfruits of all he created.
James 1:18

Many times, I have found myself angry with the "History Channel" for hosting crazy stories. When one watches a program on a network called the "History Channel" one expects some actual HISTORY, not wacko imaginings of ersatz ghost busters, Martian insiders and anti-Catholic groups intent on "proving" alternate versions of Christ and Christian history.

My acquaintance simply believes it, and that's it. These conversations remind me of yet another reason why people give credence to fake news stories. The stories simply corroborate the person's desire to believe something bizarre. Maybe it titillates them.

As Christians, we have to be devoted to the Truth, even when that truth is not exciting, does not comport with what we wish the truth to be, does not make us special, and does not convict someone we hate. Before we spread ridiculous and harmful stories about other persons, groups, or the good Lord Himself, we have to do our research, and this research does not include relying upon yellow journalism rags with no legitimate credentials.

Another truth buster I find frequently in social media, especially, is the tendency for people to make assertions about the motives, intentions or inclinations of heart that another person may have. For instance, I have read more than a few posts in Facebook in which the writer claims that President Obama "wants to destroy America."

Do not let any unwholesome talk come out of your mouths,
Only what is helpful for the building others up according to their needs,
That it may benefit those who listen.
Ephesians 4:29

We cannot say with any reliability whatsoever that we know the heart, mind or intentions of other persons. It is IMPOSSIBLE to know these things, and anyone who pretends to know these things has arrogantly judged the heart of their fellow human being and violated Jesus admonishment that we must not judge others. Judge a person's actions, if they are sinful. Judge those things which we KNOW to be true, but do not judge their hearts. That is God's territory.

Don't assume that a person's sinful actions can magically inform you of the contents of their heart and their intentions, and especially do not spout these heinous imaginings in public or in private. If you think you have psychic ability that informs you absolutely of someone else's motives, you need a psychiatrist.

Guide me in your Truth and teach me,
For you are God my savior,
And my hope is in you all day long.
Psalm 25:5

So, at the end of this ramble, I find myself feeling very sad that I had to write this. This is BASIC . CHRISTIAN . PRINCIPLE.   B*A*S*I*C.   Knowing that I am a simple and weak sinner, with no power or authority, I wonder if I have wasted a lot of my time by writing this. After all, the entire Bible is filled to the brim with holy instruction about the way in which we are to treat other human beings. Lying about people, spreading rumors about them, impugning bad motives to them, are worthy of hell. If the Bible cannot inspire people to love the Truth, what can I do? All I can think is that I feel it is important to insert a HOLY message into the public arena. At least I can be ONE MORE PERSON advocating for TRUTH. It is not my version of the Truth. It is God's Truth.

Out of love for you, my brothers and sisters, I ask you not to spread stories about anyone or anything without having ascertained their truth. Restrain yourselves, and live with Jesus forever.

God bless us all.

Silver Rose Parnell

Outside are the dogs, those who practice magic arts,
the sexually immoral, the murderers, the idolaters,
and everyone who loves and practices falsehood.
Revelation 22:15
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Sunday, December 4, 2016

A MARVELOUS VISION OF HEAVEN



When I was a nun in the Hindu convent in Hollywood, I distinctly remember a short conversation in which the ersatz head nun waxed enthusiastic about how wonderful it would be when she died and just "merged" into God and became part of Him. Without thinking I said, "that sounds REVOLTING!"

It was then that I realized that my true inner knowing and belief was far different than the Hindu-style religion I'd entered in my late 20's. Even though I'd had almost NO exposure to Christianity while growing up, I somehow just knew that God was my creator and not my equal and that, if I was lucky enough to make it to heaven, it would not be a little Goddess on par with the great creator.

Many of these Hindu-based and "New Age" religions believe that the world is a horrible place and that the whole rationale for spiritual practice was to escape the grim and never ending cycle of birth and death. Some Christians, influenced by our pagan culture, believe that everything earthly, including our bodies, is bad and must be overcome. They believe that we are spirit beings stuck in the material world, but this is not Christian theology.

God created this world and pronounced it "good." He created us in His image, which, of course, is automatically good.

When I became disabled, and the illnesses worsened and accumulated with age, I forgot for a short time that the world is good and that our bodies are good. The horrible distraction of trying to get my needs met and my illnesses addressed pulled my mind away from the Lord to some extent. I was sad that my life had "ended up" like this, despite my joy at finding my Lord and experiencing the privilege of serving Him.

Thanks to a mini-series about heaven that I saw on EWTN, I was reminded of the truth, and I snapped out of my depression! My life has not "ended up like this" because my life has no end. My life has just barely begun, in the context of eternity. SO MUCH lays ahead!

In heaven, according to Anthony Destefano, the author of A TRAVEL GUIDE TO HEAVEN  our bodies will be transformed into our "most perfect selves-physically, emotionally, and spiritually." In addition to the deep, abiding joy that we naturally expect to experience in heaven, Anthony draws upon Biblical scripture and Catholic theology to fully develop a vibrant, soul-thrilling glimpse into the heavenly realm.

The Amazon.com page dedicated to this book says that heaven is "not only a spiritual place, but also a physical place, a fabulous "luxury resort," more sumptuous than any on Earth. The residents are real, their bodies transformed into their most perfect selves..."

The DVD based upon this book can be purchased at EWTN, the Eternal Word Television Network AT THIS LINK: DVD - 3 HOURS - TRAVEL GUIDE TO HEAVEN. I found it very entertaining, sometimes charming or funny, and often inspiring. Watching it helped me form a more specific expectation of heaven.

Since 2017 marks the 100 year anniversary of the miracles of Fatima, I intend to devote part of this year to the study of the Fatima miracles, the promises, and the instructions of our Lady. With a little help from my friends, I plan to give out rosaries, books about Fatima, and books about the rosary. Having a vision of heaven under one's belt is a fabulous inspiration to fuel a renewal of spiritual zeal, and is appropriate to any ministry, I would imagine.

Once we learn about the remarkable miracles that were witnessed by 70,000 people, "on cue," so to speak, how can we doubt the words of Christ or his blessed church? How can we not believe that, if we love Christ and follow his words, we are destined for that beautiful place called Heaven, where we will spend much more time than here on earth?

I would like to suggest that you purchase and watch the DVD: "TRAVEL GUIDE TO HEAVEN", which is sold through EWTN. Commemorative 100-year rosaries with attached special medal are sold by the Blue Army, otherwise known as the WORLD APOSTOLATE OF FATIMA.

I also recommend perusing the Catholic web websites and pick up anything you can on the Miracle of Fatima. The whole story is a wonderful aid to Evangelization.

If you can spare it, please donate on my website so that I can also distribute some rosaries and books this year. As usual, I have medical needs that are not being addressed, and if you God has graced you with the ability to help with those, I am grateful.

Most monastics have to do some sort of work to support themselves, since the generosity of modern man is limited, and the value of lives devoted to prayer is not appreciated. It is difficult to do this while disabled, which is the reason that most convents and monasteries will not accept disabled people, and some will even throw you our if you become ill while living as a monastic among them. Fortunately, the Lord has graced me with some creative skills.

In future, I may be uploading new blogs for the artworks.  In the meantime, my genealogy business can be found at: SILVER COTTAGE GENEALOGY



Please remember that I have professional genealogical skills, I paint, I write, and I make home-made lace chapel veils. I will be putting up some websites for these when I can, but keep it in mind for the time being. I am disabled for most functions, but I can produce a few items for sale, and perhaps I can make something for you. Christmas is around the corner.




May you be showered with blessings!

I pray for all of you, as I hope you pray for me.

God bless us all!

Silver "Rose" Parnell