Thursday, November 25, 2010

Thanksgiving Prayer (Ação de Graças)

I offer thanks to God for constantly challenging me to be better than I think I'm capable, for giving me the strength and courage to say yes again and again. The result has been an awesome life. 

I offer thanks to my family for putting up with my absences, for always giving me that "coming home" love we can only get from our family. I am missing you all today. 

I offer thanks to my fellow Brothers of the Sacred Heart, for my local community whose prayers I feel strengthened by each day, and for the Institute of Brothers throughout the world who strive to live the Sacred Heart each day. This year I especially give thanks for the Brothers here in Brasil who have shown the true spirit of brotherhood through hospitality.

I offer thanks to my friends who support me in so many ways, for their dedication to their own families and the example they are to me.

At that time Jesus prayed this prayer: "O Father, Lord of heaven and earth, thank you for hiding these things from those who think themselves wise and clever, and for revealing them to the childlike.
Matt. 11-25

Note: I made a sweet potato pie for the brothers. Had to make evaporated milk from scratch, none in Brasil. We'll see how it comes out, but that awesome smell filled the house.  Oh, and I can smell the Cajun Fried Turkey from here. 

Saturday, November 20, 2010

Feast of Christ the King (risking all)

Sunday, Nov. 21 the Catholic Church celebrates the Feast of Christ the King. Now, I have never felt comfortable with the image of Christ as "King". However, recent developments in the political world and in our society in general have given me the opportunity to reflect more on this image.

               In an article titled 'Wandering minds' make people unhappy, the study concluded people are most unhappy when they think of things other than what is happening in the present, when their minds wander. How, you say, does this relate to the opening paragraph? Well, I think the greatest characteristic of a real leader is to live in the present moment. Certainly, we all have to plan for the future, but Christ was able to lead by risking, knowing and doing what was right "in the now". We all have that capacity, to risk, to know, to do what is right "right now". Why don't we? Jesus shares with us the true lesson of leadership, the "truth" as some would say, when he says it all in this one simple statement, "only those who are prepared to "lose" their life will save it." It's time for all of us, political leaders and citizens, to live in the present moment, to lose our life and live for others. Then, we will be truly happy.

To laugh is to risk appearing the fool.
To weep is to risk appearing sentimental.
To reach for another is to risk involvement.
To expose your ideas, your dreams, before a crowd is to risk their loss.
To love is to risk not being loved in return.
To live is to risk dying.
To believe is to risk despair.
To try is to risk failure.
But risks must be taken, because the greatest hazard in life is to risk nothing.
The people who risk nothing, do nothing, have nothing, are nothing.
They may avoid suffering and sorrow, but they cannot learn, feel, change, grow, love, live.
Chained by their attitudes they are slaves;
they have forfeited their freedom.
Only a person who risks is free.

Author unknown

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

"While I have this Chance"

This video sums it up for me. Enjoy!

Friday, November 12, 2010

"Miles for Moz" Benefit Run

           My younger brother Craig, the tall skinny one, will be hosting a benefit run to be held January 29, 2011 in Baton Rouge. It should be a great experience. We hope many people will come out and support the mission, have fun and exercise as well. Please go to the website to register online, donate or volunteer.

           The day of the run we will also be collecting pens, pencils, erasers and pencil sharpeners which we will bring directly to these needy students. We are still looking for sponsors, so please consider  advertising your business with us for a good cause. Contact us at:

           Also, join our "Miles for Moz" on Facebook. Help get the word out!

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

New Info. on Desks

           Yes, you read this correctly. I have new information on desks. I can't think of too many needs greater in a new school than desks, talk about something I would normally take for granted. However, I began to think about the need for desks when I learned that some students don't have desks or the desks they have are falling apart. So, I began my search for information on purchasing or building desks in or near Amatongas.

          After a few weeks I was ready to give up until I received an e-mail from a fellow blogger and missionary in the same area. Check out the pictures above and below from his blog LOVEMOZ. Each desk cost about $25, is solidly built and sits two maybe three students. He thinks we might be able to get them cheaper if ordering in bulk. Better yet, the desks came from Chimoio, a city less than an hour from Amatongas. It would be great to get these ordered ahead of our arrival so the students could have desks for the beginning of next school year. What a dream!!!???

Sunday, November 7, 2010

Thursday, November 4, 2010

Amatongas Bound visits Cristo Rei

We had a great visit today with the students, teachers and administrators at Cristo Rei, a school in Marilia with about 1600 students ranging from 6 to 19 years of age. We talked to them about our new mission school in Amatongas, Mozambique. It was a great visit and we felt such love and support from everyone we met today. We look forward to a great relationship with this beautiful and huge Brothers of the Sacred Heart school.

I felt so guilty after my last blog post I have to include some of the better pictures of Marlia. It is a beautiful city with a tropical feel to it, palm trees and parrots everywhere. On my walk to school everyday I come across some incredible flowering trees pictured below.

Finally for today, I leave you with an image I found on the internet. Just in case you were wondering if Amatongas was a bit remote. I'm not sure how often the train runs, but I'll tell you in less than three months.