Anyone but the above

I’m extremely disappointed in our political system now. When I was younger we had politicians like Edmund Muskie, George Mitchell. Bill Cohen, Bob Dole, John McCain, and yes Susan Collins. These people disagreed reasonably and still remained cordial. The rhetoric and extreme drama that I have seen in the political debate makes me believe that our country is headed for the dump. I will not vote for anyone who does not remain positive in their political process. I’d rather see newbies who run for office and maintain integrity without the negative campaigning then see the kind of negative destructive verbal jousting that has become the norm. The constant nipping of political correcting instead of focusing on substantive policy decisions is driving me bonkers. There was a time when I could disagree with a neighbor or some other public figure and simply let the process take it’s course. Now, even disagreeing becomes a moral affront. I simply do not understand it. What ever happened to friendly competition? You know, like when we played marbles in the school playground the the one with the most “steeley’s ” always seems to crush all the others. I never held that against those champions of the marble game and eventually, I decided it was not worth the aggravation. I stopped playing marbles. I did not whine about it. You know the saying “take your marbles and go home”. That is what I did. But now it seems like this is not an option. It is better to stay in the game and keep whining, I think not. Grow up people you have a country to govern.

Divided but Moving Toward the center.

I sense today, maybe it’s the summer weather changing to autumn, that our country is beginning to cooperate in the political arena. People are tired of the divisiveness and fighting. They simply want our Congress to work for all the people. As of today I see the extremes moving towards the center for the overall good of this wonderful country we live in. Sending my prayers to all so we can work together and make this nation better than in the past. We can become our best self as a country. I send my gratitude to the police officers serving for this honorary week. I hope we all can continue to work together for the good of our nation. Thanks be to God. Amen.

Spiritual Life Balance

Hello,  today I am sharing my thoughts about how I am learning to balance my spiritual life with my worldly life with the hope that you will gain insight from my writing and make good decisions in your daily life.  Balance is critical to our health and wellness. Balance is critical to our spiritual development. When we are balanced we thrive.

My approach to learning spiritual/life balance is from an educational perspective. You know the saying

” Give a person a fish they will eat today, teach them to fish and they will eat for a life time.”

Once you learn to fish you still need to discern which catches to reject and throw back and which to keep and [eat] use. Learning this promotes balanced function in you and in the world. When we are balanced we are happy, compassionate, and function well in our individual lives and the community.   Individuals find this balance in their lives by identifying the [catches] various internal and external systems (beliefs, people, organizations, etc.) that support their life, including work, family, friends, faith based organizations and learning resources then consciously strive to attend to these systems by caring and supporting them.  Avoid your feelings and get it done. A good strategy for keeping on task and not letting our feelings sidetrack us is by reviewing The Constructive Living Maxims by David Reynolds. These sayings, used as a thoughtful break from possible down sliding and/or overwhelming thoughts, will help you overcome the feelings and take your next step to achieving balance in your life, community and workplace. Taking time for silence also helps. Some good sources for learning about silence include the monastic tradition of St. Maron, the Desert Fathers, St Sharbel, and Poustinia as well as Holy Silence as described by author J Brent Bill in his book  Holy Silence.

The internet is also a great resource and has the potential for provide enormous, inspiration opportunity and insight. I believe the internet is a physical, or at least a metaphorical, manifestation of Carl G. Jung’s collective unconscious. Which includes all the good and unfortunately the not so good of humanity’s conscious and unconscious thought, values, behavior and spiritual awareness. We must discern the difference as we explore the internet and stay true to our Creative Source which supports and encourages our life. For me this is best manifested in the Eastern Christian Maronite tradition.

Human cooperation will increase when the bridge between traditional, conventional thinking and progressive thinking is strengthened. This melding includes practices regarding individual healing, community and economic development, spirituality and education. We are all humans on this earth. We each have individual needs and differing approaches to meeting those needs. Failing to work through these conflicting views in a collaborative and peaceful way can destroy community living. There seems to be a prejudicial gap among various groups that is keeping our communities from seeking this collaboration. In spite what some think these differing groups are not mutually exclusive. This is not an either or, black or white, kind of debate or discussion. Every individual has their own perspective. Promoting and expanding our differences causes more conflict and discord. We certainly must understand and respect our differences. But that is where it should end. We should pay attention to the concepts that bring us together. This page promotes a collaborative mission encouraging a democratic and ecumenical tolerance for people with different cultural, community, economic, religious and personal values. It supports and embraces all the common core values of being human. This perspective will help sustain your balance.

Some of the common core values that we all strive for include an individual vision to live a peaceful and secure life filled with human cooperation, love and joy. And…gratitude Creation which helps maintain and nurture this view.

Another important part of living on earth is economic opportunity, people all over the world must have a reasonable way to make a living in the community they live. The source of this economic opportunity must be ethical and transparent. It must maintain human dignity. Only then will it sustain the individual, the community and the world.

We each must feel secure physically, economically, emotionally and spiritually. A significant part of this philosophy is that individuals take personal responsibility for the development of our local communities, workplaces and themselves. Working in your local community is a great start. Volunteer in your local community or place of work to make it a better place.

This strategy is primary for individual human development that then impacts our communities.  These concepts are universal and can be applied by any human being, community or workplace that is striving towards more balance and continuity with the environment they exist it. This awareness creates a paradigm shift, which occurs when this practice becomes part of everyday choices. It then moves each individual entity from an isolated self preservation perspective to a local and world community preservation perspective. We realize we are all connected in some way. We center our self, then, when we cooperate with and attend to the systems that sustain and support our existence, individual, community and global balance is achieved because we each cooperate with multiple systems and ultimately the source of creation. These systems, including our own thrive. Community and the individual is born, balanced and sustained through individual focus and effort and community cooperation

Thanks for visiting my web page. Stay in touch

Keep the Faith

 We are the People Makers

WE frown they hide their heads,

We smile they come alive
WE hurl belief at them
and,… they come forth from dungeons and succeed.

“Take care of yourself by caring for humanity”
Subdeacon Stephen

Copyright (C) 1997 – 2017 Stephen C. Crate, CRC
Permission is granted for academic use of this material if cited appropriately.

The best way to find yourself is to lose yourself in the service of others.
Mohandas Gandhi

From St Faustina

The 25 spiritual secrets from the remarkable nun St. Faustina are a strong foundation for the battle we encounter living in the world. http://aleteia.org/2016/10/08/25-secrets-of-spiritual-struggle-that-jesus-revealed-to-st-faustina/?utm_campaign=NL_en&utm_source=daily_newsletter&utm_medium=mail&utm_content=NL_en

St Charbel Relic Visiting Waterville

Waterville church to celebrate visitation of relics of as St. Sharbel

Waterville’s St. Joseph Maronite Catholic Church is celebrating on Thursday and Friday, April 28 and 29, the visitation of the relics of St. Sharbel, the healer. The Maronite Catholic Churches of the United States will be celebrating the Year of Mercy as announced by Pope Francis by having the relics of St. Sharbel visit each Maronite Catholic Church and to celebrate the 50th anniversary of his beatification, which took place at the close of the Second Vatican Council. He was canonized by Pope Paul VI in 1977, according to a news release from St. Joseph Maronite Catholic Church. All are invited to be a part of the spiritual celebration.
According to the release, miracles attributed to him number over 1,000, many are associated with healing. He is called “Instrument of the Divine Physician” and “Model of the monastic life.” Although he may not be familiar throughout America, St. Sharbel, whose feast day is the third Sunday in July, is a prominent saint among Maronite Catholics and those of the Eastern Rites. For more information on St. Sharbel’s life, miracles and St. Maron Monastery in Annaya, Lebanon, where Sharbel is entombed, visit www.saintcharbel-annaya.com.
Veneration of the relics and silent prayer in the church sanctuary will begin at 9 a.m. Thursday. The welcoming ceremony will commence at 5 p.m. with a procession. Everyone is invited to join St. Joseph’s Choir, the Knights of Columbus, church organizations, parish representatives and congregations, as they proceed around the church on the corner of Appleton and Front streets. Mass will be sung at 6 p.m., with the blessing of the relics of St. Sharbel. A free spaghetti supper will be provided by the three area Knights of Columbus councils.
The church will open at 5:30 a.m. Friday for silent veneration of the relics. Public prayers will be offered on the hour, beginning at 6 a.m. with the rosary, the chaplet of St. Sharbel at 7 a.m. and 3 p.m., little office of St. Sharbel at 8 a.m. and 4 p.m., Safro (morning prayers) at 9 a.m., prayers for healing at 10 a.m., St. Sharbel prayers at 11 a.m., novena of St. Sharbel at noon, rosary at 1 p.m., the chaplet of the divine mercy 2 p.m., Songs of Inspiration at 5 p.m., and divine liturgy for the sick at 6 p.m., with the blessing of the relics of St. Sharbel. Silent veneration will continue until 10 p.m. with a closing prayer.
Throughout both days, videos and displays of St. Sharbel’s life and the Lebanese community will be available in the church hall, where there will be refreshments. Prayer cards and St. Sharbel chaplets will also be available. A book will be made available for intentions, which will be sent to the monastery in Annaya to be prayed for by the monks and pilgrims there.
This event is intended to deepen our knowledge and, in the words of Archbishop Zayek, “our love for St. Sharbel, but even more so, our love for what he loved: prayer, penance, sacrifice, the Mother of God, and the Eucharist,” according to the release.
St. Joseph Maronite Catholic Church is handicapped-accessible by elevator; parking is available on Appleton Street, in the side lot next to the church, at Head of Falls or in The Concourse.
For more information, please call the church office at 872-8515, email stjoesinmaine@yahoo.com or visitwww.sjmaronite.org.

Presidential election

Political correctness and volatile public behavior has defeated the moral imperative of electing the best candidate as President of the United States of America. At this moment in time this popular trend appears to be the sliding slope to our mutual destruction. When public discourse is dishonest and nasty with hidden agendas that only serve specific ideology then we all lose. The debate must be public, transparent and civil without hidden backroom eye-wink agendas.  Until this occurs the general public will continue to distrust politicians and our democracy will continue to erode. Our next president must be someone we can be proud of, who can be our commander in chief and show strength, kindness, tenacity and decisiveness  in times of doubt. They will set the course and lead our nation to greatness. We deserve nothing less. Attend the up coming caucus. Let your voice be heard.