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Showing posts from June, 2008

The Patience of Job...

I have not. In a first for this blog,k I am actually writing this as I am experiencing the matter about which I blog. So I am writing from seat 28 C on a Continental flight from San Francisco to Dayton with a stopover in Cleveland. I'll not give any more information, lest other passengers find this and feel that I have singled them out for derision.

On three passengers, in reality, should have this worry.

Allow me to begin with the woman on my left. Probably approaching retirement, she has thoughtfully squeezed herself into sausage-skin tight shorts and a strange, yet inexplicably captivating, white linen shirt. Upon her mountainous bosom rest a pair of antique brown spectacles. Her fingers are painted a shade of light pink, her hands look soft and supple. They seem care-worn, soft, and now smeared and streaked with what pizza sauce she was unable to slurp off of her fingers. My entire left side is wet and sticky from her baptizing me with her "orange juice, no ice" that s…

Ryan and Emma talk about Theology

As one who strives so hard to be a good Jesuit, I thought I'd continue my niece Emma's catechetical formation.

I began with the question, "Emma, who is the greatest theologian in the Church?" She was, of course, a little stumped: she loves theology but, as she's only 10 months old, she feels that there may be some thinkers that she's not quite familiar with.

So I offered her a few suggestions. "Emma bug, do you think Hans Urs Von Balathasar is the bestest, coolest, most neat-o theologian EVER?"

Her face said it all:


Then I said, "Hey now! He's a really good theologian, too. Sure, he is not nearly as fun as some others, but you need to be open to him!"

I continued our lesson. "Emma, there's a very clear answer in my mind. Two words: Transcendental Thomism. Okay, one more hint: think Vorgriff."





Yes, Emma, of course it's Karl Rahner!!




You see, everyone, theology is fun! 
Now all I have to do is by her the "Foundations of C…

And he's off!

Tonight begins my marathon of travel for the summer. In this order (and subjected to a few additions) I will be:
Leaving tonight for Los Angeles where I will play a 2-day feis in IrvineFlying from LA to San Francisco on MondayStaying in SF until Friday, when I'll fly to Dayton and Cincinnati for their feisReturning to SF for two weeksGoing to Denver the second weekend of JulyTwo weeks later, I may or may not take another feisFly from SF to LA, and then LA to Cleveland (On August 1st)August 3rd I'll fly from Cleveland to Chicago, get picked up at the airport, and then drive to Omena for summer villaPost-Omena, I'm playing two feises (Windsor and Lansing) and then coming home to Cleveland. That week I'm having a medical procedure done and going to my cousin's weddingThen, finally, I'll return to New YorkNow this does not include any day trips I take while in SF.
I should mention that my travels do have an apostolic purpose:
I love playing for Irish dancers, and I th…
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The Storm has Passed

On Saturday I had the joyful privilege of watching my sister - Torrey Duns - marry Brian Holleran. So my first order is to offer my sincerest congratulations and best wishes to Brian and Torrey Holleran (Mrs. Holleran!!) as they embark for their honeymoon. 
When I go home this afternoon (I'm writing this from Bruegger's Bagels. Grandma Hagan's house does laundry, it does not do internet) I will upload some pictures from the wedding. 
I've been to a good few weddings in my day, and I'll say this: this was the most fun I've ever had at a wedding. The food was delicious, the crowd was in great spirits (both literally and figuratively), and we had great music. Again, I'll post pictures later today.
My own travels begin on Friday. I'll be playing at the Irish Fair in Los Angeles and then I'll head down to San Francisco for a few days. I'm coming back to Ohio for two feiseanna and then BACK to San Francisco until the end of July. I'll be, as I may ha…

The Calm Before the Storm

Well, it's upon us: my sister's wedding. Months of planning and scheduling, meetings and fittings, are all about to culminate in the Sacrament of Marriage between my sister Torrey and Brian Holleran. 
Do you think that peace and tranquility are reigning supreme at our house?
Not on your life.
So forgive me if posts are sparse this week. There is much that must be done before the Big Day arrives. Then again, if things are totally insane at my house, I'll probably camp out at various coffee shops where I'll sip green tea and blog. So who knows: there may be multiple posts giving updates about the insanity that is sure to break out before Saturday!

One for Joseph Fromm

So I thought I'd throw a bone to Joseph Fromm over at GoodJesuitBadJesuit. Given his ability to stand in judgment over the relative goodness or badness of a member of the Society of Jesus, I reckon he'll appreciate that I've been spending some time with both the code of Canon Law and with various directives issued by the USCCB  in regard to the reception of the Holy Eucharist.
You see, there's a young diocesan priest in my Bronx neighborhood who has been the source of great consternation these past few months. Now for many, Father certainly looks the part: he struts regally throughout Little Italy in his cassock and biretta. He also has brought the Latin Mass to the parish. 
Yet Father sometimes forgets that the homily is often better spent breaking open the readings and preaching the Gospel of Christ rather than ranting about poor mass attendance (preaching, of course, to the people who do attend). And just yesterday, I heard from a friend that this week's homily - …

Give us this day, our daily rant

I was doing some maintenance on my YouTube videos this evening and I discovered that as of right now, my videos have been viewed 1.2 million times. That's 1,206,877 times to be exact. That's a lot of times that my mother has clicked on my videos to drive up the view count!
Now, while it's no Charlie the Unicorn, the popularity of the Tin Whistle videos has prompted many people to send me emails. I get quite a few each day and, truth be told, I really do read each one and I try to respond to all of them. But sometimes I get behind in my correspondence, thus forcing me to answer a slew of emails in one sitting. 
Don't get me wrong: I love hearing from people. It really does seem that the whistle videos have reached a world-wide audience and I've heard from two guys who are discerning vocations to the Society of Jesus, in part, because they were introduced to the Jesuits through my lessons. So I'm glad to be of service both to my faith and to my musical heritage.
I a…

My Prayer Metaphor

So I've now concluded my annual retreat. It was a graced time of prayer and reflection and I feel a renewed sense of joy and enthusiasm as I enter into the busy travel schedule of the summer.
If I were to distill the movements of the retreat into a single image, it would be this: Green Lantern. As some of you know, the Green Lantern is a character from DC Comics. Given a green power ring, the Green Lantern is charged with being a force for good in the world. But the awesome power of the ring requires that it be recharged on occasion. The wearer must charge it using a small battery that draws its own power from the Central Power Battery. (yeah, it's a stretch, but bear with me)
You see, the power of the ring fails if it is not charged. Sure, the Green Lantern is still the Green Lantern but, without taking the time to charge his ring, he is unable to answer demands posed to him as a member of the Green Lantern Corps. Wearing a charged ring, the Green Lantern is possessed awesome a…