Thursday, June 30, 2011

Hog Poem

It's that time of year again, hog poem time:

What are the roots that clutch, what branches grow 
Out of this stony rubbish? Son of man,  
You cannot say, or guess, for you know only 
A heap of broken images, where the hog wallows, 
And the dead tree gives no shelter, the cricket no relief, 
And the dry stone no sound of water. Only 
There is shadow under this red rock 
(Come in under the shadow of this red rock), 
And I will show you something different from either 
Your shadow at morning striding behind you 
Or your shadow at evening rising to meet you; 
I will show you fear in a handful of dust.
And a shot, the hog is dead.

Apologies to Mr. Eliot.

Hot enough to roast hog on the sidewalk.


Tuesday, June 28, 2011

States' Rights

I stumbled across an article by Kirkpatrick Sale, writing for Chronicles. He's against "excessive federal power", which "is so overreaching that it is incompetent and inefficient, and it is so corrupt that it is clandestine and uncontrollable."

This federal power, for Sale, constitutes an "assualt on our liberty" and leads to the following:

"The system we confront is, for all its ineptness and misguided flailing, a powerful one and practiced in the ways of advancing its interests. But resistance is the only sane, intelligent, moral, and practical course. And the only agency, the only locus, for that struggle is to be found in the individual American states. It is not to be found in the family, the neighborhood (where such a unit still exists), or even in the so-called transition towns... all too limited, too powerless."

He quotes John Randolph, "And it is the power of the states to extinguish this government at a blow. They have only to refuse to choose members for the [Senate] or refuse to send electors for the President and Vice President, and the thing is done!"

I'd say there was sympathy for that point of view in Texas.


Monday, June 27, 2011

Bag Head

some bag head
The Episcopal Church (TEC), under the leadership of Jefferts Schori, the litigious 'boy bishop' of 815 2nd Ave, is in bad decline. It seems that people just don't want to be included in 'inclusivechurch'. To make things better, 'Vestrypersons' met for a church growth seminar. Here's an excerpt:

"The first half-hour was devoted to coffee and meeting one another as the various parish groups assembled. A large circle was then formed, and individual statements were given about hopes for the day. Then the program, or rather the games, began. The stated purpose was to relax us, to get to know one another’s names, and to produce an atmosphere of teamwork. Paper bags covered heads, and people had to form a line or persuade a stony-faced person to smile, etc., for two hours [italics original].

...the leader asked us to show hands if we believed as individuals we would die. Then she said that since death was inevitable, the church too would inevitably die, so we shouldn’t worry about church maintenance and growth. Since we would die, we were “free to live!” It was pointed out that there was a difference between our attachments to 1) the church and 2) bricks and mortar."

Well done.

Carry on,


Sunday, June 26, 2011


random dog
Sometimes being a Parson can get a little intense; you see, there's a lot of driving to Waco to visit the sick in hospitals and the general business of, by the grace of God, leading two missions to growth. All that to say nothing of selecting bad prelates for the coveted Alien Head awards. Burdensome on the mind, I can tell you.

horse that mysteriously went from $500 to $3000...
So to get back down to earth, I like to shoot and ride, especially the latter and preferably in combination (albeit Dragoon style). I find it clears the mind, keeps up fitness and gives a fine sense of achievement; after all, it's no mean thing to chart the progress of training a fast horse and count the success in the increasing pleasure of the ride.

Speaking of which, I've felt far more confident in JB -- after last year's nasty rib-cracking fall -- and have begun to canter/hand gallop her again. She's much smoother in her gaits, with far less tendency to duck, swerve and snake-out, which is a testimony to a 'back to basics' training approach. Since December all we've really done is concentrate on walk, trot and movement around obstacles and she's reacted well to this. But that makes sense, you have to walk before you can run and patient consistency is essential to building that foundation.

I suppose JB has taught me a little of that, which is no bad thing, but I'll spare you the burdensome 'horse lore'. And the reward? Increasing harmony of man and beast, at increasing speed, over the hot Texan countryside. As SBW (great blog) says, Top Result. The next step? More of the same.

Head for Home
Have a blessed Sunday, even if it's hot enough to ignite magnesium in the shade.


Thursday, June 23, 2011

Good News

Got back from an enjoyable ride and shoot to learn that Geert Wilders has been cleared by a Dutch court of "hate speech". His crime? Daring to suggest that Islam isn't some kind of Buddha-meets-Gandhi, pacifist poetry slam, but a "totalitarian political ideology disguised as a religion," whose Koran mandated goal is "to establish the realm of Allah in this world, if necessary by force."

Wilders is free now and I'd say that was good but Mark Steyn's comments on Gates of Vienna are telling:

"And at the end the awkward fact remains: Geert Wilders lives under 24-hour armed guard because of explicit death threats made against him by the killer of Theo van Gogh and by other Muslims. Yet he’s the one who gets puts on trial."

Maybe people like Wilders will help the West understand that a religion founded by a warlord who married a nine year old girl, when not cutting off Jewish heads at Medina, might just, possibly, have something other than peace on its agenda.

In the meanwhile, have a blessed Corpus Christi,


Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Bad News

There was a mighty storm here last night, so I stood on the the front porch and watched the sky light up with lightning as the rain lashed down. Like being on the prow of a ship in a gale.

Then, in the morning all was calm and blissfully cool. Pleasant. I made myself some tea and went out back to relax, only to see... that a large tree had fallen on my neighbour's house from the church car park. Disaster! No one was hurt, thank God.

Speaking of disaster, I just learned, via Ballylong and David Kearns, that Fr. Kit Cunningham had a bad past. It's on Damian Thompson's blog -- I've removed my post and agree with DT's comments. I wish I could think of something uplifting to say about this, but I can't.

Watch out for falling trees.


Monday, June 20, 2011

Texas Beats South Ken

Pit Stop
Back in the olden days, I used to enjoy lounging about in South Ken with the Fact Compiler. He'd say, "But LSP, America is so provincial!" That's absurd. We have "Mojo's".

Cold Air?
We have "Valley Mills",

Dirt Road
the road to Waco,


and Beer Can Chicken.

+ we can own pistols without being thrown into jail.

I like all those things. A lot. The moral of the story? Texas beats South Ken.

Every blessing for Trinitytide,


Saturday, June 18, 2011


Sometimes I get it wrong, it's understandable, we all make mistakes and sometimes they're grievous. Bluesun spotted mine:

"I think any public figure that Bono has mentioned in song should automatically qualify for 5 alien heads before anything else is taken into account."

Well said, Bluesun, I stand corrected.

8 Heads!
Tutu gets another alien head, automatically, and a further three for crazy off-world antics. That brings the total up to eight.

By no means shabby. Well done, Desmond.


Friday, June 17, 2011

Bishops - Desmond Tutu

"They should all be locked up and put in a cage." Fr. Bowling

African Anglicans, by and large, are a pretty conservative bunch. Then there's Desmond Tutu, acclaimed international speaker, Nobel Laureate, retired Archbishop and all 'round saint of 'inclusivechurch', the same crew that brought us Bishop 'Vicky' Gene Robinson, Mary 'Imnotamanhonest' Glasspool, and millions of dollars in litigation against trad dioceses like Fort Worth.

Tutu had this to say, at a meeting of co-religionists in Pittsburgh:

"In his sermon, he poked fun at the belief that only those who accept Jesus as their savior can enter heaven.

'Can you imagine that there are those who think God is a Christian?' he said to laughter from a mostly appreciative audience. 'Can you tell us what God was before he was a Christian?'"

Top humour, Desmond. But just think, what if that awkward bit, inter alia, in John's Gospel, "I and the Father are one", or that pesky "God from God, light from light" business in the Creed, is actually true. What if your job, as a successor of the Apostles, is to uphold Apostolic Faith and Order. What then? 

Think yourself lucky if the reward sticks at a respectable four Apostate Alien Heads.

Just sayin'.


Tuesday, June 14, 2011

France or Texas?

Sometimes Team LSP can get a little mutinous. Here's an example:

" be fair horses and guns are not a monopoly of Texas or indeed the US.  The French for example enjoy riding and shooting, and of course fine wine."

Expensive French Nonsense
They also have the Trianon, which I enjoy, and their City, Paris. But do they have the Alamo? or the Chucacabra?

No, they do not.


Left Behind?

time we left this world today
Everyone knows that the Rapture was supposed to happen the other day and has had to be rescheduled to sometime in October. Or perhaps it did and we're all 'left behind', but whatever the case, the prophets in question should pay closer attention to Scripture. Our Lord says that 'no one knows the day or the hour' of the Apocalypse, or Eschaton (Matt. 24-36). 

TP has an interesting take on the various biblical texts; he thinks we should want to be 'left behind'. Read it here, if you like.



High Church

Spent last week teaching at the St. Michael's Conference, Southwest. The chapel was plain when we arrived, so we got it up higher; the young people prefer it that way. Thanks to Fr. Matkin for the transformation, excellent result.
The Conference is unashamedly trad -- no Pelosianite, priestess nonsense, just the Faith and, of course, worship was central, with daily Morning and Evening Prayer, Solemn High Mass, Compline, Benediction & Exposition of the Blessed Sacrament and Confession. I cunningly made mine before the event, but most of the kids (there were 69) make theirs during the week, often for the first time. There's great spiritual power in that.
LSP (center) at the Confiteor
The Cure D'Ars, who is the patron Saint of priests, tells us that when we go to Confession we 'draw the nails from the wounds of Christ'. A beautiful image, I always think.

After Evensong and dinner, the Conference splits into 'discussion groups'. By some strange coincidence, I was asked to lead the ones on guns, space aliens and cryptids.

'Guns' was simple - we like them, a lot, and approve of the Church's teaching on war, which prohibits priests from killing people. 'Drawing blood' was the old stricture but that didn't stop aggressive prelates, like Odo, from carrying clubs, maces and the odd surreptitious sword into action. 'Aliens' was easy too - the kids believed in them, for the most part. But do they get to heaven? Depends on how wicked they are, I suppose. For example, Jefferts Schori might find the process tricky. 

Genuflect, LSP

The Cryptids discussion was curious; lots of talk about the Chucacabra, whom most considered a mutated dog. Others thought it a new species, but all were agreed as to its animal nature. Altogether different from evil elves, which the Latino children believed in - strongly - and were almost too scared to talk about. No wonder.

They're evil dwarflike spirits who cause mischief around the house and, if not appeased, steal the souls of babies. Scary, so I reminded the kids of the power of prayer, Angelic protection and Our Lady's intercession.
Lift high the Cross
Then, all too soon, the Conference was over. Easily the most spiritually uplifting event I've experienced in years. Well needed, I can tell you.

God bless and be sure to stay away from the sinister dwarf/elf spirits.