Tag Archives: parish

Happy New Year, everyone!

Here it is, 2013. Where did you go 2012?

Our weekend kicked off Friday night with a sleep over, not the fun kind. We participate in a homeless ministry at our church. Once of twice a year, the church provides overnight housing for a group of homeless families for a week at a time. They need couples to cook meals, be “evening hosts” and “overnight hosts.” Since we don’t have small children at home to worry about, Mrs. Poolman and I usually take one of the overnight assignments. It’s just a matter of going up to the parish center and spending the night sleeping on cots. It’s not a real hardship duty, and it apparently does some good. Our night was uneventful, except that Mrs. P hardly slept a wink. I rarely have such problems.

So Saturday was largely a wasted day. Mrs. P spent most of the day napping on the couch. I made some corn chowder and delivered it to our daughter and her husband who were sharing a case of the flu.

Trouble with the curve We rented a pretty good movie that evening – Trouble With the Curve (Clint Eastwood, Amy Adams and Justin Timberlake.) It’s a story of an aging baseball scout whose attorney-daughter joins him on the road to help save his career and reputation. It was Clint being Clint and Amy Adams being her usual cute-self. Throw in a boy-meets-girl sub-plot with Timberlake and you have a fairly predictable, but still very enjoyable flick. Mrs. P went back to sleep before we were 20 minutes into the show, but I liked it anyway.

Lincoln-Movie-Poster-1536x2048_extra_bigOn Sunday, we hit another movie at the theater that we both really enjoyed. “Lincoln” with Daniel Day-Lewis, Sally Field and Tommy Lee Jones was simply outstanding. I’m sorry we waited until it was almost at the end of its theater run before getting around to watching it. If you miss it in the theater, be sure to catch it on DVD or pay-per-view. The movie is not a comprehensive bio-pic of Old Abe. Rather, it focuses almost entirely on the single month of January 1865, when Lincoln lead a determined effort to convince the House of Representatives to pass the 13th Amendment outlawing slavery. At face value, that probably sounds boring to a non-history buff. However, the script is very well written, and the acting is outstanding. Watch for it to come up frequently when the awards season rolls around.

Mrs. P had to work both Monday and today, New Years Day. Unfortunately, they can’t send those babies home just for a holiday. Last night, some of our friends invited us to their house for dinner. We had a great time, but were back home by 10 pm so Mrs. P could hit bed in time for her 5 am wake-up. I’ve mostly watched football games today. So far the SEC is looking pretty good. Florida plays Louisville and long-tine, popular Gator assistant coach Charlie Strong tomorrow night. I’m back to work tomorrow. It’s been a good break. I may need it. Right now,  January and February look like they will be rocking.

Helping out

Mrs. Poolman and I spent last night sleeping on cots in our church parish center. This was part of our parish’s participation in the Interfaith Hospitality Ministry. We did this last year. It’s a good program and we enjoy supporting it.

Essentially, a group of churches takes turns providing breakfast, dinner and overnight shelter to a small number of homeless families. This was one of three 2010 weeks our parish is assigned.

Our job was to be the overnight hosts. We showed up at our parish center around 8:30 pm and met one of the two single-mom families. The second family was already in their room and put to bed for the night. I played Scrabble with one of the boys for about 45 minutes until his mom came around and scooted him off to bed.

Mrs. P and I had a curtained off section of the gym with some cots. We were up at 6 am to lay out the breakfast food. We then cleaned up the eating area and were out the door headed home by 7:00 am.

The families in this program are not the hard-core drunks and drug addicts. These are families who have hit bad times and need some help to get back on their feet. We are very glad we were offered the opportunity to contribute.

Hello, CCD class and Good Bye, Mary Travers!

We had our first CCD class of the year last night. In the Catholic Church, these are religious education classes for the kids who go to public or non-parochial private schools. This is my fifth year teaching 5th grade in our parish. I have a co-teacher in our friend, Susan. Last year’s class was very large by CCD standards, 29 students enrolled and about 25 showing up each week. However, they were a great class and we had a lot of fun.

This year’s class should be interesting. It is much smaller, around 16 students. Classroom control is always an issue, especially at the beginning of the year. Many of the students don’t consider having to sit through an hour’s worth of extra education on Wednesday evenings a part of their job description. For some kids, their Ritalin wore off around 5 pm, and they can be seriously wired. My answer to this is to start out as somewhat of an SOB. It’s much easier to start out tough and then let up than the other way around. By the second or third class, I usually have all but one or two stubborn cases converted. Then I can revert to my normal, charming self. (Ha!)

It is interesting though how quickly you can ID certain stereotypes.

“Miss Chatty Cathy” — You hardly ever see her face because she is always turned around talking to the girl in the desk behind her.

“Mr. Center of Attention” — He really wants to be on-stage and likes to make smart aleck comments about everything. He is the first cousin of “Mr. Stand-Up Comedian.”

“Mr. ADHD” – He is so wired that he falls out of his desk several times each class.

“Miss Question a Minute” – Her hand is always in the air with a question, whether it pertains to the subject at hand or not.

It should be a fun year!

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I heard this morning that Mary Travers died yesterday. That is sad. For those not familiar, she was the “Mary” in “Peter, Paul and Mary.” I realize I am dating myself, but I really enjoyed that group and their music. We even went to one of their concerts in Jacksonville just a few years ago. Mary’s rendition of the John Denver song, “Leaving On A Jet Plane” is one of my all time favorites.