Wednesday, February 13, 2013

pope benedictSo Pope Benedict XVI announced on Monday that he’s retiring, the first papal resignation in 600 years! 

At 84 and ailing (it was recently revealed he had a pacemaker for years, the battery being replaced only a few weeks ago) The Pope stated not wanting to go out like his predecessor Pope John Paul II, who died of heart failure while still in his Papacy.  What would be great would be for the Vatican to take this unprecedented opportunity to bring in a new kind of Pope who can bring the Church and Christianity into the 21st century. Sorta like the intentions of the character from Dan Brown‘s “Demon’s and Angels“,  Camerlengo Carlo Ventresca, but without the maniacal plot to vanquish all his competitors and fake the rescue of Vatican City from an Illuminati plot blow it up. A Pope who will create a fresh path to ideas regarding birth control, homosexuality, the use of the Church’s vast riches to help the poor all around the world who join the legions of Christianity more regularly than any other faith. Making religion less of a cash cow and more of a scared one. The world doesn’t exist in a vacuum. Christianity can no longer afford to stay in theirs. “Make That Change” as Michael Jackson used to say. ♦

SOTU_0212_FullSpeech_480x360President Obama‘s State of The Union Address went off as planned, without a hitch. He made good on his promises to address a push for the strongest of gun control laws, to continued commitment on bringing the troops home from Afghanistan, to fix the Immigration process, to administer stern presidential warning commissioning both parties to grapple fairly and intelligently with the country’s debt crisis and its recovery from it, and creating an agenda to battle climate change. I think he pretty much has the next four years covered, don’t you? And they will make great signature legislation along with ObamaCare, to come off of what is already an extraordinary Presidency. ♦

Today is Ash Wednesday, one of the holiest days in Christianity. But how many of us really know the story behind the ash in Ash Wednesday? Here’s a quick lowdown:

ASH WEDNESDAYAsh Wednesday is the first day of Lent in the Western Christian calendar. Occurring 46 days before Easter, it is a moveable fast that can fall as early as February 4 and as late as March 10. According to the canonical gospels of Matthew, Mark and Luke; Jesus spent 40 days fasting in the desert, where he endured temptation by Satan. Ash Wednesday marks the beginning of this 40-day liturgical period of prayer and fasting. Ash Wednesday derives its name from the practice of placing ashes on the foreheads of adherents as a reminder and celebration of human mortality, and as a sign of mourning and repentance to God. The ashes used are typically gathered from the burning of the palms from the previous year’s Palm Sunday. This practice is common in much of Christendom, being celebrated by Catholics, Anglicans, Lutherans, Methodists, and some Baptist denominations ~ Wikipedia

“…ashes on the foreheads of adherents as a reminder and celebration of human mortality, and as a sign of mourning and repentance to God.” And now you know…and knowing IS half the battle…♦

 OMG! I’m I just slow or has everyone just discovered the miracle of Well–its a magical site that allows you to print out super-duper discounts on everything from aqua filters to zebra patterned pillow cases. I’m talking up to sometimes half off stuff like Sushi dinners, spa days, kickboxing lessons, hotel stays, camping gear, comedy shows, clothes, everything!


One thing’s for sure, the Brains behind this idea did their homework on how to take a simple idea like the discount coupon and make it a globally successful business in an economy that otherwise is not giving out breaks. Wish it had been me, but there’s more great ideas where that one came from pilgrims!…♦



Amy Conton is a freelance writer and graphic designer living in New York, USA.