Father Michael’s Blog


The Lenten Spring (Training)

“The Lenten spring has come – the light of repentance.” This is a line from just one of the many hymns that describe this Lenten season using the analogy of the change of seasons happening around us as we emerge from winter. There is something refreshing about spring (even if our winter doesn’t seem to […]

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You Just Never Know

You just never know. And it’s not the point that we know. This past Sunday, we heard the Gospel reading of the Last Judgement as written in Matthew 25. One of the remarkable aspects of this reading is the fact that neither the people that helped the needy, nor the ones who did not, realized […]

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Touching One Life at a Time

While out last night for a Valentine’s Day date, Vicky and I caught the Academy Award nominated film, Lion. All I knew before we walked into the theater was that it was nominated for Best Picture this year…and that it was convenient to see after the time of our dinner reservation. What an incredible film! […]

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Work and Rest

So here’s a phrase I never thought I would be writing in a mid-week message to my church community: Way to go, Lady Gaga! In the lead up to this last Sunday’s Super Bowl, many had assumed that the outspoken performer would use the opportunity of having the largest television audience on the planet to […]

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Let there be Light!

Well, I had another blog post ready to go for today, but the beautiful sunny morning we’ve been enjoying here in West Michigan has convinced me to spend some time reflecting on the importance of light. We’ve gone through several weeks where we’ve not really seen the sun. This is not a practical problem; we […]

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Can’t we all just disagree?

In May 1992, with widespread violence and looting breaking out across Los Angeles, Rodney King went on live television to utter his famous line: “Can’t we all just get along?” The acquittal of the police officers who had been video-taped in what appeared to be a clear case of police brutality touched off city-wide violence […]

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Physical and Spiritual Fitness

With the coming presidential inauguration, there have been newspaper columns, magazine articles and TV specials looking back at the Obama years. Part of this reflection has been not only reflecting on the presidency of Barack Obama but on the influence of First Lady Michelle. She championed several important causes, but the most well-known was her […]

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How a Mighty River is Stopped

There are a few things in life that continually astound me. One of them is something that those who grew up in Michigan find to be utterly ordinary: rivers that freeze in the winter time. To me, it’s mind-boggling. How does something continually in motion, let alone the force of a mighty river, find itself […]

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New Year, New You

No, I’m not trying to sell you running shoes. But lots of other people are, and the slogan “New Year, New You” seems to be all over the place. Others may not be selling shoes, but ARE selling gym memberships, treadmills, or weight-loss meal plans. That’s because retailers are on to us. They know that […]

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Memories Not Yet Made

Those of us who are parents and grandparents want nothing more for our kids than the best we had growing up, and if possible, even more. Since I arrived at Saint Nicholas, I have heard dozens of stories – and that’s no exaggeration–of parents and grandparents who are sad that their children and grandchildren don’t […]

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More Work?!

The Gathering Room of The Cultural Center was a beautiful sight this past Monday, with lovingly-arranged Christmas centerpieces on the tables. In one corner of the room, handcrafted drinks looked as if they were pieces of art, flanked on the other corner with a dozen varieties of homemade sweet treats. The opposite side of the […]

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What’s with the oranges?

Anyone who was at the services at our parish of Saint Nicholas, Grand Rapids noticed two bowls of oranges flanking the icon of Saint Nicholas. As we celebrated  the memory of our patron saint, there were lots of folks asking, “What’s with the oranges?” I was actually the first one to ask the question when […]

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