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Scenes from my first Christmas

Yes, this is my First Christmas.....as a Deacon of course. Fr. Andrew reminded me and the entire congregation of that, along with the story ...

Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Pictures from The Vigil 07/25/12

 Our Altar Servers (3 are brothers!)

St. Anne!

Fr. Kyle!
Photos courtesy of Maggie Garon!
please view these and numerous others at our parish website:


Bonjour et Adieu mes Amis,


What was hidden in the mist!

I will announce what has lain hidden from the foundation
of the world.

This is the final verse from yesterday's Gospel reading, and it is also the emphasis of Deacon Andrew's homily. He recalled from his time teaching in Ireland how the mist would veil what would soon be revealed by the sun. The metaphors were awesome and he remarked that as of yet he had not seen this happen during his stay in Berlin. Today is Deacon Andrew's final day here in Berlin, and upon awakening this morning and gazing outside I noticed that there was a mist that veiled the city. I think he was given a treat by Our Lord today in honor of his wonderful homily. 
There are many things that are yet to be revealed to us once we break away from the mists that cloud our views, or the veils that obscure our judgements. Let the Lord's word ring in our hearts and may your vision be clear and your hearts pure in Love for Our Lord!

Bonjour et Adieu mes Amis,

Sunday, July 29, 2012

Do you believe in Miracles?


 This morning I got up early and started going over today's readings and trying to really let them sink in.  Each and every reading had something special to it, but there was an underlining theme that was burning inside of me. I put myself into the Gospel reading and tried to imagine how I would handle the situation of the multiplication of the loaves and fishes. Being somewhat practical I thought that upon hearing what Jesus said about feeding the people, all 5,000 of them, I would have thought to myself  "is he nuts?" This can't happen, there's too many of them we can't possibly pull this off. 

Then it dawned on me, in 1980 a bunch of college kids were put together in a quest to do the impossible. There were no superstars, they were relatively unknown, and very few of them went any further than this event. Nobody gave them a chance, and anyone saying they could pull this off, would have been called "NUTS!" 

I'm sure the title of this posting has already given away where I'm going with this. We are like those young men who used what they had, they worked together, they learned to believe, and yes a miracle occurred, The Miracle on Ice. 

Our Lord is challenging us today, giving us everything we need, and when we believe we can perform miracles. This week our parish with the guidance of Deacon Andrew and Fr. Kyle pulled off a miracle of sorts where we successfully hosted over 1,200 pilgrims. We shared our talents, our love, and we were blessed with a beautiful day. 

Al Michaels may have believed that he coined the phrase "Do you believe in Miracles?" but honestly Jesus is the author, when he asked his Apostles to trust Him, to believe in Him, and also believe in themselves. Here is another quote from Al Michaels:..................

  "That was the beauty of that game," Michaels says. "You didn't have to understand to understand."

 Again, who is really the author of this, can't you just picture Jesus saying.......
 "That's the beauty of following me, you don't have to understand to understand, 
You just need to Believe!
 Bonjour et Adieu mes Amis,


Saturday, July 28, 2012

Our Reason to Pray............more Vocations!

A gathering of Priests that surrounded our Bishop who said.........."What do you think?"

Naturally a round of applause thundered through the mountains, and without a doubt our voices were heard!

Today and everyday we need to pray for more vocations, Priests, Religious, Sisters, and Deacons!

Bonjour et Adieu mes Amis,


Friday, July 27, 2012

St. Anne's Pilgrimage!

Bishop Peter -The Blessed Sacrament
350 yellow roses signifying the number of vocations from Berlin!

Bonjour et Adieu mes Amis,


As we celebrate at Grandma's House!

There will never be enough nor the right words to describe what happened yesterday in Berlin. I was standing way out back  with about fifty of us in the standing room only area. To give you some perspective, St. Anne's can hold 1200 faithful, and yes there wasn't an empty seat in her house. Bishop Peter spoke so well about how we all loved memere's house (grandma),as she had the best candies, she had special meals, she had that special china closet where she stored all her treasures, and yet she carried with her the greatest treasure of all, her faith and she passed it on to us. The faithful were reminded of that Treasure and that we must pass on this Treasure to the next generation. There were 350 yellow roses on the high altar, each representing the 350 vocations that have come out of Berlin. This nest, again coined by our Bishop, was given the opportunity to share our lives, our love, but most of all our faith with so many people. 

The procession was awesome............................

This will be the first of many to come!

How do you top off a day like this one. Well, Deacon Greg was standing next to me throughout the Mass and unfortunately couldn't stay, but Steve, Cheryl, Michelle, Chris, and Mike joined Terry and I for a nice meal and a chance to be with each other again. 

Bonjour et Adieu mes Amis!


Thursday, July 26, 2012

A Vigil of Joy and Hope!

Last night marked the beginning of our celebration here in Berlin. The initial count was estimated that 200 people would be attending. The count resembled more like 400 people attending. Fr. Kyle spoke about that typically, most vigils are a time of sorrow after a loss, and that this one is one of Joy and Hope anticipating something great that is about to occur. After the vigil I spoke to a few parishioners who were extremely moved by last nights event, and some are making plans to change their schedule to be at the Church today.There is so much life that is exuding from this vigil, and the Spirit is definitely within us all. I also met one of our classmates with his wife, Steve and Cheryl who made the trip to be with us.We are making plans to gather Thursday evening and have supper together.

This morning Mike M and I met for Morning Prayers and then helped set up the Church for some final touches. I popped into my store for a few minutes to touch base with my employees and when I was leaving my assistant said ............................................."Don't forget to pray for us!" and I said ........... "I always pray for all of you!"

Today my prayers will be with all of you who will be here physically and spiritually. I hope to show off some of the pictures that will eventually be posted.

 Bonne St. Anne priez pour nous!

     Good St. Anne pray for us!

Bonjour et Adieu mes Amis,



Sunday, July 22, 2012

Shine Like the Stars!

This week I have my assistant manager on vacation and so it's my turn to endure the marathon week filled with a Super Sale that is now going on. We have extended our hours so our complete days are now one hour longer, and I had three of them this week. Normally, it's not that big of a problem but my assistant called me this week and asked ...."did you bang your head while on vacation?" ..... " are you sure that you can handle all those hours alone?" Well, my ego at the time thought so (more on that subject later), but soon enough I found out that this would kick me hard in the behind!

The fatigue has gotten to me as far as blogging and journal-ling is concerned, but I haven't lost what matters most and that is receiving epiphanies along the way. This one happened yesterday at morning prayer. I'm really into it, I'm reading along, and then it happens. The Morning Reading:

Reading: Phillipians 2:14-15

In everything you do, act without grumbling or arguing;
prove yourself innocent and straightforward,
children of God beyond reproach in the midst of a twisted  
and depraved generation-
among whom you shine like the stars in the sky.

I know in the past I mentioned how incredible it feels to read something over and over again, and then suddenly it creates a spark inside of you that can't be extinguished. I also know that I have mentioned that one of my faults that I'm really working on is arguing, so needless to say this one was written for me, (and everyone else of course). I had to stop reading and really reflected upon this one. St. Paul has such an incredible way of getting to us, and then presenting a timeless message of hope and also evangelizing.
If we really want to bring more souls to Christ the road is mapped out right here. Don't be the one who grumbles all the time when you are faced with a prickly person or situation, don't be the one who argues and tries to prove that they know more or are always right, do prove yourself to be someone special in this still twisted and depraved generation, and when you shine like the stars in the sky, the world will look with envy and then they will say ......."I want what they have, I want to be like them!"

Bonjour et Adieu mes Amis,


Tuesday, July 17, 2012

And today it begins!

Today marks the beginning of the preparation for the pilgrimage and the Feast of St. Anne!  It is my wish that with all of our prayers, this Diocese and the Church throughout the world will see a greater number of vocations. Please begin a Novena if you haven't already done so, and once again I hope to see you all in Berlin on the 26th!

Bonsoir et Adieu mes Amis,


Sunday, July 15, 2012

Spiritual Friends!

This being Sunday I'm really going to enjoy this day. This is the last day of my vacation, this is the Lord's Day, today is Hospital Ministry Day, and I will be celebrating my cousins 60th Birthday!

Terry was off an running to work this morning and she dropped me off to Church just a little  bit early. We said our goodbyes and her vacation came to a halt. I stopped by to check the schedule and was greeted  by the Three Amigos: Fr. Mark, Fr. Kyle, and Deacon Andrew. Fr. Mark said "Here comes trouble", that's me! Fr. Kyle was the Celebrant today and he looked very intense, he reminded me of the look I must have had when I was giving my reflection with our community.

In his homily today he noted  that Jesus sent the Apostles out two at time, knowing that the Mission would be difficult, and challenging, and that they would be better off if they were not alone. He spoke about, that we all need a Spiritual friend in our life, someone that can help us out when times get rough, and when we may want to throw in the towel. I couldn't help but have many images race across my mind. Spiritual friends, traveling in two's, hum, Mike and I! That one was very special! Who else? My wife, my best friend,my candidate community, my morning prayer partner Mike M, Fr. Mark my Spiritual director, Fr. Kyle my confessor, and many others. We are not individualistic believers, we are an Assembly of believers, and we are all one body! I guess Fr. Kyle's intense appearance was pretty much like the one I had, one which was probably typical but unnecessary. We all do well together!

Hospital ministry continues to evolve and amaze me. Sometimes I see new people and at times I see them a second time around, but either way I grow from this experience. The Spirit, and the love that comes from this is incredible.

Soon I will be leaving to celebrate, and like the way this day his been going, it should be pretty special!

Bonjour et Adieu mes Amis,


Friday, July 13, 2012

Novena to St.Anne

Novena to St. Anne


St. Anne Glorious St. Anne,
filled with compassion
for those who invoke you,
with love for those who suffer,
heavily laden with the weight
of my troubles,
I kneel at your feet and humbly beg you
to take my present need under your special protection, for an increase of vocations everywhere and especially in the Diocese of Manchester New Hampshire.
Recommend it to your daughter,
the Blessed Virgin Mary,
and lay it before the throne of Jesus.
Cease not to intercede for me
until my request is granted.
Above all, obtain for me the grace
to one day meet God face to face,
and with you and Mary
and all the angels and saints
praising him through all eternity.

Good Morning! I'm passing on a sample Novena to St. Anne in honor of the upcoming event here in Berlin! I am asking that all of you begin a Novena on July 17th to our Grandmother, especially for those who will be unable to make the pilgrimage to Berlin!

Bonjour et Adieu mes Amis,


Monday, July 9, 2012

"Venez" Come to Berlin!

So are you coming?

I can honestly say, I never thought that Berlin would be the center of such a religious event!  There is certainly a buzz, excitement, and definitely pride in our community for for receiving such an honor. The "NEST" as Bishop Peter has labeled us, is ready and eager to welcome you home! I hope I get to see each and every one of you. If you recognize me or my wife please introduce yourself, after all we are  "Family!"

Bonjour et Adieu mes Amis,


PS please check out the related links where you can view the events and register online. The links are berlingorhamcatholics.org and catholicnh.org and they are below the icon of St. Anne!

Saturday, July 7, 2012

Road Trip!

Terry and I have spent the majority of our lives living in the Great North Woods of New Hampshire. We are blessed to live next to most of our family members and friends. The only problem has been when the daughters, and sons grow up they generally move away from the nest.

Traveling is a staple if you live up north. Today we are heading south to be with family in Mass. My niece will be having her daughter baptized tomorrow morning, so we will be loading up the car and make the four hour road trip! Yes I know it is a long trip, but after all "it's family!"

Bonjour et Adieu mes Amis,


Wednesday, July 4, 2012

Happy Birthday America!

Today being our nations birthday we celebrate our richness, our freedoms, and most all the gifts that we have received from Our Lord!

As a parish we will gather as one family at our annual picnic!

Check out the picture from last years event! Fr. Mark is concentrating very hard! (The big guy between the youths in the green and red shirt!"

Que Dieux vous Benis Tous, May God Bless you all!


Tuesday, July 3, 2012

Are you still here?

It's Sunday morning and it's my turn to spend time at the hospital. It's a beautiful day outside and it would have been real easy to find an excuse not to go. Today, I didn't make any excuses and felt a strong need to go to be with those who are suffering. It's been almost a year now since Mike and I have been doing this ministry and today would prove to be a day I won't ever forget. Each and every time I go something happens and this day would turn out to be very special.

The first lady I visited was a lovely woman who was actually getting ready to go home. I asked if she was excited to go home, and she said ...... "not really!" I don't think anyone has ever said this to me before. She was in the hospital for a short stay, but before she entered the hospital she had to have her dog put to sleep. The emotions, and the pains of a loss, and going home to an empty house was frightening. I spent quite a bit of time with her trying to encourage her and reassure her that all would be well. She even talked about getting another pet, maybe a cat, or maybe another dog. She smiled, and thanked me for my time, and she felt a little guilty for keeping me around so long. I told her not to worry as I was sent to be with God's children.

From then on each and everyone I spent time with was quite special and revealing for me. This was going to be one of those days that reminds me of why I'm being called to this vocation. The ministry of presence was in full force and the Spirit that filled this time was incredible.

As I entered into the elevator to head back home I was just in a state of awe of how this day had unfolded. Upon exiting from the elevator the receptionist and the gift shop attended in stereo said "are you still here?" I looked at the clock and noticed that I had been in the hospital for almost two hours! It actually was the longest time that I had ever been there.

The adventure didn't end there! For almost another 45 minutes the three of us had a great conversation of faith and how we can be witnesses to God. When we read in Scripture about not worrying about what to say, I was reminded of this again. I found myself sharing my faith, acknowledging theirs, and then inviting them to celebrate with every one on July 26th at St. Anne's Church. By the way, one of the ladies wasn't even Catholic but she said that she probably would be there! Incredible!

I never thought that I would have ever invited anyone to come and be with us, and yet I shouldn't have been surprised.

After all .............."all things are possible through Him who strengthens me!"

Bonjour et Adieu mes Amis,


Sunday, July 1, 2012

And we have a visitor.....sort of!

This weekend we are playing musical pastors! Fr. Mark is heading south and we have a visitor for the weekend. Actually, he really isn't a visitor! Fr. Richard Dion an old friend that I grew up with on Berlin's East Side is here for the weekend.
My folks and I went to his Mass last night and he's still the same old Richard! Even though we have both aged only a little, his character and his style hasn't. He hasn't lost his sense of humor and he definitely has a gift for preaching.

Welcome Home Fr. Rich!

Bonjour et Adieu mes Amis,