Monthly Archives: December 2007

Pointing the way…

Evidently most of your readers don’t have G(i)FB(o) in their list.

Christmas update in Ubaúna — check it out!


“Christmas Child” coming online

preparando-as-cestas-5.jpgThe photos are coming in from the Ubaúna Christmas Child project. Check this out to see some of the pictures. Be sure to click on the photos on the right of the screen when you get there.

A most interesting Christmas Eve

I like to ruminate.

That is simply the act of thinking on, and reliving, words, events, actions.

It’s almost 10:00 p.m. on Christmas Eve and I’ve just walked in the door from the Waterstreet Restaurant downtown where we fed somewhere around 300+ homeless, down-on-their luck, and needy folks. I literally helped turn out the lights in the restaurant.

And now I’m ruminating.

  • “Why are you doing this? I mean, seriously, why?
  • “I’ve got to get to Fayetteville and I’m gonna walk it. How far is it to Fayetteville anyway? Be truthful with me man!”
  • “I can’t believe that I’m sitting here on Christmas Eve eating like this! I haven’t eaten in two days and I’ve been staying under the overpass. I’ve tried to find work, but there isn’t any. I heard that somebody was giving away free food tonight so I came hoping to get something to eat. I never dreamed I’d get a feast. You have no idea how much I appreciate this.”
  • “I walked here from Leland. I’ve been in town all day looking for work. I can’t find s***. But I found you. I don’t eat much these days ’cause I don’t have money and today I’ve eaten nothing. It’s hard not to get depressed, especially on Christmas, especially when everything is going wrong, especially when you’re hungry and don’t know when you’ll eat again. But lookey here. Food! Tons of it! My tummy is so excited that my brain thinks it’s happy.”
  • “Hey man, can I get one of those free Bibles?”
  • Toothless mouth, broken glasses, layers upon layers of clothing and a “ripe” smell, all wrapped around a big grin and twinkling eyes: “Merry Christmas? Yessir, you have given me one!”
  • “Don’t you have a church in Orlando?”
  • “I’ve got a buddy with a bum leg lying up in the woods… is there any way I can get some food to take to him?”

And that was just a sampling.

I bussed tables, I carried food, I worked on the food line, I carved up whole turkeys and hams (I even ate some of the meat pieces… is that allowed?), I swept, I took food to a bar down the street, I heard a drunk Santa trying to sing Silent Night. But more than anything, I observed.

I saw a church doing what a church should be doing. I saw Jesus followers engaging the down-and-out, lending a sympathetic ear, evoking a shy smile on wrinkled, hard faces. I saw lots of people I don’t even know from the same church I go to… lots of volunteers, giving up their special night with their family to serve. That amazed me. It made me proud. It got me excited.

On a night when many churches hold special Christmas Eve services to honor the birth of the Christ child, Lifepoint became the Christ child to more than 300 people.

I think that is quite traditional… in a first-century church type of way.

Now, this is cute and puts me in the right spirit…

Mary Christmas — no, really!
Taken from Central Utah’s The Daily Herald

Merry Christmas to you, Mary Christmas. That’s what the former Mary Young is hearing this holiday season, after she married Brian Christmas earlier this year.

“It was meant to be,” Mary Christmas told the Daily Herald of Provo. “God has a sense of humor. What are the chances that it would ever happen?”

She has found, however, that she is not alone. Mary Christmas has been working at for three years and discovered there are as many as 100 other Mary Christmases in the United States.

The last name of Christmas has its origins in Wales, she said.

“It was given to people that were born on Christmas Day,” she said. “Somewhere back there someone of my husband’s ancestors was born on Christmas. It is not a super common name.”

Christmas said her husband’s grandmother, Joy Christmas, once was stopped at a counter at JCPenney, under suspicion for using a phony name.

The name brings compliments.

“For many people, it seems to make them happy. ‘You are my favorite,’ they tell me. ‘I think of your name and it makes me happy,'” Christmas said.

Her husband, Brian, says the best part of her name is that he has Mary Christmas all year long, not just in December.

Christmas Hymn of the Times

Competition Sneezing

I’ve decided to begin working out for the new sport announced on ESPN the week of Thanksgiving: Competitive Sneezing.

People have been known to auto-induce severe head colds just to be able to better compete. That is the category I am in. I wanted to be in top form to be able to blow my brains out with explosive sneezes that project out of my mouth at over 200mph. I wasn’t real keen in participating in the “Juicy Sneezing” competition, just too messy. I had to make sure that the head cold I induced was just of the right consistency to  make me feel like dried dog manure and make my head locked up tighter than a snare drum. That way, when I sneeze, I just get a fine mist with an explosive, high decibel sound. The recoil needs to be strong enough to snap the head back and be followed by a low, but audible, “ooohhhh” sound, but not so strong that it hurts. A simple wipe of the nose with a tissue should be all that is required once my heat is over.

I’m really quite proud of what I’m achieving. I actually made the sheet I had pulled over my head last night to blow up about two feet this morning. I even accomplished a difficult 6-sneeze repetitive sneeze that left me gasping for breath. In the “Sneeze with food in your mouth” Category I didn’t fare too well: I blew cracker and peanut butter across the table and got choked. The minimum requirement is to coat a wall five feet away with food particles and completely empty your mouth in the process.

I did compete in the “3 Sneeze Drive down College Road at Rush Hour” last night. It wasn’t executed very gracefully but I did manage to slam on the brakes before hitting the car in front of me.

I’m antecipating the followup competition that should begin in 24-48 hours — deep talking like Arnold Schwarnezeger on steriods.

<in a really deep voice> I’ll be back…

Ding, dong, the witch is dead…

raquel-3.jpgOr, HoHoHo, Merry Christmas!

Yep! The little gal in red is none other than our Raquel. She doesn’t look very dead, does she?

As Jerry Clower used to say:
Ain’t God good!