Wednesday, December 28, 2011

It takes a village... make a village. This village scene took shape last night only because I had help! Many thanks to the omnicompetent Joe Horner and his highly talented sister Lucy. Joe conceived and executed the snow effects and trees, assisted by Lucy, who assembled the snack bar to the right of the train station. The station was painted several years back by their father, Bruce Horner. I glued together and painted the bridge if that counts for anything.

Saturday, December 24, 2011

Trains and Tree

Rather at the last minute, the train and tree have appeared in the rectory.

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

In honorem sanctae Caeciliae

I wanted to post a piece of organ music for St. Cecilia on her day. But which piece?  And what kind of piece? Every music lover will have his own suggestion. This year I offer a quiet piece that shows what the organ can do that no other single instrument can: create a complete world of music in which time is suspended.

Friday, September 23, 2011

Summer's Over

But a little bit of sailing can still be squeezed in before winter comes.

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Oh Happy Fault? Double-meaning headline alert

Transfiguration Catholic Church Celebrates Fall

The Transfiguration Church community celebrate fall together.

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Friday, September 16, 2011

See You at the Concert

The Five Priests Concert
Sunday, September 18, 3 p.m.

Five priests of the Diocese of Columbus who are also fine musicians will open the 2011-2012 Cathedral Concerts series. Msgr. Stephan Moloney of Immaculate Conception Church, Columbus, Fr. Kevin Lutz of Holy Family Church, Fr. Thomas Buffer of Saint Stephen the Martyr Church, and Fr. Ty Tomson of Saint Andrew Church will play a program to include works of J. S. Bach, Cesar Franck and others. The Cathedral's musicians will also perform a work composed by Fr. David Poliafico.

Sunday, September 11, 2011

Where Does Water Come From

Recently I spent 3-1/2 days without running water in my house. I knew that something was wrong when the well pump began running every four minutes. When we pulled the well pipe out of the ground we found that it had a hole in it, and the check valve at the bottom of the well (60 feet down) was bad. Parts were ordered and the well pipe replaced. Then the pump wouldn't prime. We pulled the pipe out again and found a tiny stone lodged in the intake. Back into the ground it all went. We poured 10-15 gallons of water into the pump to get it primed. It began to pump water, finally, but the pressure would not go above 10 psi (normal operating pressure is between 20 and 60 psi). So we got a new pump. Then we went across the street to fill 5-gallon containers with water to prime the pump. That took two hours. When the water started coming up it was dark gray, almost black. I let the hose run outside for two hours until all the silt we had stirred up ran out. Then I drained the water inside the house to get the silt out of the inside lines. My advice is: never buy a house that has a well.

Sunday, August 28, 2011

Up on the Roof

Yesterday some of the men from the parish started removing and replacing the convent roof. My role in the project was limited to buying the materials and staying out of the way. As you can see, they are making great progress -- probably because I stayed out of the way,

Sunday, July 24, 2011

Double Decker

A recent visit to the website of the Italian State Railways showed that while the Italians are good civil engineers they still have problems with the English language. In an age of globalization there is something comforting about this.
For example, someone attempted to say :in addition to" the Frecce (arrow) class trains, but instead wrote "on top of the train." Quite a mental picture.
Ciao. Link HERE

Friday, July 1, 2011

Before and After

During the past six months we have worked, at times round the clock, on the remodeling of our church interior. Bishop Campbell dedicated the new altar on June 25. The next step will be the refinishing and installation of pews.

Friday, June 17, 2011

Time to Start Practicing

have been asked to participate in an organ concert on Sunday September 18 or this year at St. Joseph Cathedral in Columbus. I will play just one piece: the Franck Chorale in A Minor. I have begun practicing it at the piano to get it back under my fingers. I first learned the piece almost thirty years ago but you would never know it to hear me practice. It's going to take a while to get it up to speed. In the meanwhile, here is an excerpt from the piece, as played by a real organist.

Thursday, May 26, 2011

Launching Day

Bright and early on Tuesday morning, we hooked Vidi Aquam up to the tractor and watched her trundle down the road to the marine railway behind Coastal Marine for launching. There was some anxiety about whether the Yamaha outboard would behave itself, but the new fuel pump did the trick. No thanks to Yamaha for not telling anyone that they had updated their fuel pump design. I am trying to think of something that makes less sense than a sailboat owner worrying about an outboard motor and I can't come up with anything. Once at the Port Clinton Yacht Charters dock, we stepped the mast and I gave the decks a good washing. Then back to sunny Columbus the same day (had a construction meeting Wednesday 8 a.m.).

Friday, May 20, 2011

Mariological Society of America

We have just closed the 62nd annual meeting of the Mariological Society of America, held at the Franciscan Renewal Center just outside Scottsdale, Arizona. We had some really terrific talks, and were blessed by a visit from the Bishop of Phoenix, the Most Reverend Thomas Olmsted, who celebrated Mass for us last night and stayed for dinner. Here is an outline of the program.

The Mariological Society of America: 62th Annual Meeting:
The Virgin Mary in the United States and Canada
(Part I : Until 1900)

Tuesday, May 17, 2011
4:00 PM Meeting of the Administrative Council

7:30 PM Welcome: Fr. Thomas Buffer
Fr. Emery de Gaál, Ph.D., University of St. Mary of the Lake/ Mundelein Seminary
The Marian Connection between the Americas and Europe: Our Lady of Guadalupe 1531-1900

Wednesday, May 18, 2011
7:00 AM Morning Praise, Eucharist
9:00 AM Opening Orientation: Fr. Thomas Buffer

Dr. Joseph White, Catholic University of America, Washington, D.C.
Mary Immaculate as National Patroness: New Perspectives on the Decision of the Sixth Provincial Council of Baltimore (1846)

10:30 AM Lynn Marie Busch, S.T.L. Dallas, PA B
The Marian Spirituality of Blessed Kateri Tekakwitha (1656-1680), Iroquois Virgin and Patroness of the United States Association of Consecrated Virgins

1:30 PM Fr. Neil Roy, STL., PhD. University of Notre Dame, Notre Dame, IN
The Marian Legacy of St Marguerite Bourgeoys CND (1620-1700)

2:45 PM Bro. Lawrence Scrivani, SM, Pacific Grove, California
The Place Afforded to Mary in the Initial Evangelization of the Stone Age Peoples of New California, 1769-1824

4:00 PM Richard Bulzacchelli, S.T.L., Aquinas College, Nashville, TN
Crushing the Head of the Serpent: Our Lady of Guadalupe and the Triumph of Revealed Religion in the Aztec World

Rosary Service (Guadalupe Chapel)

Thursday, May 19, 2011

7:00 AM Morning Praise, Eucharist

9:00 AM Dr. Wendy Wright, Creighton University, Omaha, NE
The Virgin Mary's Kaleidoscopic Heart: Southern California from the 19th to the 21t Century

10:30 AM Fr. Richard Gribble, CSC. Stonehill College, MA
Fr. Nelson Baker and Our Lady of Victory Basilica, Lackawanna, N.Y.

1:30 PM Edward Looney, Diocese of Green Bay, WI
Called to Evangelize: The Story of Adele Brice and
the Marian Apparition That Changed Her Life

3:00 PM Sharon Perkins, University of Dayton
Marian Devotion among Czech Catholic Immigrants to Texas from the 1860s through the 1940s

5:30 PM Eucharist: Most Rev. Thomas Olmsted


Friday, May 20, 2011
7:00 AM Morning Praise, Eucharist

9:00 AM: Fr. Thomas Thompson, S.M.
Select Marian Bibliography 2011

9:30 AM Business Meeting.

10:45 AM: Pilgrimage to the St. Mary's Basilica (Phoenix)

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Welcome Home

Pleaes continue to pray for all catechumens and candidates for full communion who will join the Church this Saturday night during the Easter Vigil. Here are a few of their stories:

Wednesday, April 6, 2011

Earth Day

This year Good Friday and Earth Day coincide. Because I plan to concentrate on observing Good Friday, I am attaching this video to help everyone celebrate Earth Day early.

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Read Any Good Books Lately?

Just finished Legacy of Ashes: The History of the CIA by Tim Weiner. Highly recommended. Here's the video version (scroll past the inane introduction given by someone who must have gone to university):

Tim Weiner Discusses the History of the CIA

And here are two well-informed negative reviews:

The book is flawed but still well worth reading, if nothing else as an introduction to an endlessly fascinating subject.

Saturday, March 12, 2011

Wisconsin protests: 'democracy in action' or 'mob rule'?

Now that the hoo-haa in Wisconsin has subsided somewhat, and attention has turned from the tidal wave of protesters in Madison to a literal tsunami IN Japan, it is time for a dispassionate look at what the Madison riot means in a nation of laws. And Patrik Jonsson of the Christian Science Monitor has kindly provided such a gaze:

Wisconsin protests: 'democracy in action' or 'mob rule'?

Friday, February 25, 2011

Church Remodeling Update

I haven't posted much on my other activities as the church remodeling has absorbed a lot of attention. For pictures and videos of progress, see the parish blog.

Monday, February 7, 2011

Special Guest Column

when will the people who organize sporting events learn that not just anyone is capable of singing our National Anthem? Here is a plea for sanity:

Saving the "Star Spangled Banner" - New Orleans Opera |

Sunday, January 9, 2011

On the Last Day of Christmas...

No, I have not forgotten about the Christmas train. In fact, this year I put two trains under the Christmas tree. I finished laying out the track and connecting the wires to it about four days ago. Here is proof: