Twilight Twitches

msgrfetscherDear Family,
There are probably a few among us who remember the aftermath of WW II. I was four years old, standing on the front lawn of my grandmother’s house in Staten Island, overlooking the Kill Van Kull. It was V-J day. The waterway separated Staten Island and New Jersey where all the oil refineries in Bayonne were blowing their whistles. The boats were tooting their horns, the train that ran along the river whistled loudly, and every car running below me on Richmond Terrace was blowing its horn. I’ve told you this before, but it is a powerful memory for a four-year-old child.

So now, when I think of the current heart-wrenching issue of the Ukraine invasion, I mentally make a connection with the huge European/Asian war memory of my childhood.

It’s hard to explain that to someone much younger today , but if the images of then bring me to more fervent prayer now, I welcome the flood of childhood sights and sounds.

Do you think our prayer affects the Ukraine situation? Besides remembering the words of Jesus, “Ask and you will receive,” (Mt. 7:7), I think there’s another dimension.

Praying can bring our hearts and minds to a place where we are more open to being peacemakers. That’s the subject of another Twitch, but basically a good personal reflection might be, “How does prayer affect me, as well as the thing I’m praying for?”

I readily confess that praying for Vladimir Putin does not come easily. Perhaps that’s one of the issues: too many of us subconsciously think it wouldn’t do any good. How many other issues are there like that in our lives? We get to the point that we just stop hoping and praying because it doesn’t seem to work.

I’m glad I’m having this little discussion with myself. It’s reminding me of things I didn’t even realize I had given up on.

Sometimes I wonder if it’s old age. Other times I suspect it just isn’t important. Remember my grandmother’s line? “If you can’t remember it, either it’s not important or it’s a lie.”

In the past I told you about saving Christmas cards. I keep my cards on the dining room table, and each day I pick up a card and make it a point to pray for the sender. Thank God I don’t get 366 Christmas cards.

Perhaps I can do the same if I start a list of politicians who are involved with the Ukraine conflict. Better than one a day, might be praying for the whole list.

Ash Wednesday comes this week. I still have Christmas ornaments I haven’t stashed in the Christmas closet.

For each household we’ve purchased a Lenten Reflection booklet from the folks who publish Not By Bread Alone. We hope you find it helpful to get ready for the great feast of Easter.

We also have the Rice Bowls from Catholic Relief Ser¬vices. In past years the bowls have been a great way to share in the valuable outreach that CRS does throughout the world. The idea is that perhaps you’d put that on your dining room table, make a simple meal, and put what you would have spent on a bigger meal in the Rice Bowl.

Also, along with he Rice Bowl, CRS send a great insert with recipes from different places they help, and a reflection/action question for each day.

The best thing about changing our routines is escaping the limits of being in ruts. Happy driving,

In Jesus,
sign frjim

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