In our church bulletin this past weekend our parish priest's weekly letter was a list of several topics he needed to discuss. He used this cool new numbering system that he stole from the youth minister. I thougt it was pretty clever myself!
For the past week I have been watching with increasing horror and grief the TV and internet coverage of the awful earthquake in Haiti. There is so much I could say about this. I am grieving night and day for all the people of the poorest nation in the Western Hemisphere; especially all those people killed by the quake, lying trapped underneath the rubble, and the thousands of people who have lost their homes and family members. It's devestating to know that many people are dying now for lack of doctors and medicine. We all need to keep praying for Haiti, and to open up our pockets and give whatever we can. Thanks to my new friendship with Twitter, I found this beautiful prayer on Michelle Malkin's website. (I probably should print it out and tape it to my refrigerator.) Archbishop Timothy Dolan summed up the disaster with these words: "Haiti is the broken, bloody body of Jesus in the arms of His Mother."
The other day I saw this article (again, via Twitter): Apparently just days after the earthquake, Royal Caribbean Cruise Lines are docking ships on private beaches in Haiti, just 60 miles from Port-Au-Prince. While dead bodies line the streets, and injured people are dying of gangrene, folks are frolicking on the beach and drinking Pina Coladas. The justification is that the ships are bringing supplies to donate to the relief effort, all of the proceeds from the ports-of-call in Haiti are being donated; and anyway, the folks who live near the luxury beaches depend on the cruise ships for their livelihood. Hmmmm. Lots of people are outraged by this, including Patrick Madrid. I'm not sure "outrage" is the right term for my reaction to the whole thing; "bewildered sadness" would be more like it. We live in a broken world, and there are still many people who would look the other way when others are hurting, because reaching out to others might mess up their own little happy worlds.
Take a look at this beautiful boy:
His name is Getro Vincent, and he lives about 200 miles north of Port-Au-Prince, Haiti. My parents set up a sponsorship for him through World Vision as a Christmas gift for our three boys. After Christmas was over, I set the little folder of pamphlets aside, with a mental note to have my children write to him soon. For the first couple of days after the earthquake, I was so upset over the hundreds of thousands of people dead and dying, I did not even think about little Getro. One morning as I was enjoying breakfast, I remembered him, and honestly I thought I would pass out from worry. After a phone call to World Vision, however, I was told by the representative that his community was not directly affected (that's when I learned he lived far enough away from the capital that he would most likely be spared). Later World Vision announced that all of their sponsored children in Haiti were safe. Praise God! They are doing great work in Port-Au-Prince now as well. (Even Rich Stearns, the president of World Vision USA, whose book I reviewed in this post, is himself in the Hatian capital helping out with relief efforts.) One thing I was told over the phone was that because the ports are closed, people in the rural areas would need more help than usual since their supply of food, medicine, etc. has been cut off.
On a lighter "note," I have been substitute teaching these past couple of weeks for the music teacher at our school. It hasn't been easy, to say the least, but it has been a great way to get to know the children (I'm learning fast which kids will always listen to me and which ones will test me to the limit), and it has been a lot of fun, too. At one point I found myself literally singing and dancing in front of the class, and I thought, "So does this mean substitutes literally have to put on a song-and-dance show to keep kids' attention?" Even though music is generally not my "forte" (get it?) I'm happy to fill in while our music teacher recovers from surgery. It's only three days a week, so I have some time at home to catch up on chores, errands, and blogging! :)
I am substituting this Friday, so we'll be missing the March For Life this year. (Last year Curly and I went for the first time, and of course I blogged about it! :D) I don't know if it will make music classes easier or not; I expect there will be a number of kids attending from the school. Americans United for Life sponsors a Virtual March for Life for those of us who can't be there; I registered my name and now I have a little virtual person standing on the virtual Mall by the virtual U.S. Capitol building. You can check it out and add your name here.
Our trip to New York is coming up soon, and we are all getting very excited! This past weekend Moe dug out a box of tempra paints and some paper out of the basement and painted an image of the Empire State Building. (I took a picture of it, but haven't downloaded it to the computer yet. I'll try to remember to post it after our trip.) Back when I was first taking stabs at blogging, I published an account on Gather-dot-com of a New York trip my husband and I made a couple of years ago; you can check out the article and photos here.
I hope you all have a great rest-of-the-week, and a blessed weekend! I'll look forward to reading my fellow bloggers' Quick Takes, and thanks as always to Jennifer for hosting! :)