Sunday 13 September 2015

Keeping Your Kids Catholic (xiv)

And to conclude: the last of the links to my old series over at the Catholic Dads' wwwsite on Keeping Your Kids Catholic.  I can't remember why I stopped doing these: I think I was busy, missed a week, then missed another...

Still, I was starting to repeat myself, so it was probably the right time to stop.

Anyway, here they are.

Winning at Life

Catholic Courtship

Planning a Perfect Week

Keeping Your Kids Catholic: Imaginatively

You Are That Man!

Friday 11 September 2015

Keeping Your Kids Catholic (xiii)

We are on the home straight! The six links I post to day are the penultimate set from my series over at the Catholic Dads' wwwsite on Keeping Your Kids Catholic.

Standing Up and Being Counted

Celebrating Advent

Ant Hits 21

Vocations Not Careers

Our Fathers' House (A Short Fable)

Lent: A Great Time For Kids

As once before, there is a reason for posting six, rather than five as usual: that is that one of them is directly lifted from this blog, so you may (if you are very lucky) have read it before. And as before, I make no apologies for posting about Advent and Lent at the end of summer: I want to present the complete set in the order in which they were first published.

Thursday 10 September 2015

Keeping Your Kids Catholic (xii)

Here are the latest links to my old series of posts on the Catholic Dads' wwwsite, on Keeping Your Kids Catholic.

Memento Mori

Raising Them as Pro-Lifers

Children of Mary

Right Relationships

A Sacramental Life

I was particularly interested to re-read the one about raising children as Pro-Lifers, given that Bernie started work as an education officer for Life this week...  Remember her - and them - in your prayers.

Wednesday 9 September 2015


Yet again, alas, it is à propos to post Elizabeth Jennings' poem.


The law's been passed and I am lying low 
Hoping to hide from those who think they are 
Kindly, compassionate. My step is slow. 
I hurry. Will the executioner 
Be watching how I go? 

Others about me clearly feel the same. 
The deafest one pretends that she can hear. 
The blindest hides her white stick while the lame 
Attempt to stride. Life has become so dear. 
Last time the doctor came, 

All who could speak said they felt very well. 
Did we imagine he was watching with 
A new deep scrutiny? We could not tell. 
Each minute now we think the stranger Death 
Will take us from each cell 

For that is what our little rooms now seem 
To be. We are prepared to bear much pain, 
Terror attacks us wakeful, every dream 
Is now a nightmare. Doctor's due again.
We hold on to the gleam 

Of sight, a word to hear. We act, we act, 
And doing so we wear our weak selves out. 
We said, "We want to die" once when we lacked 
The chance of it. We wait in fear and doubt. 
O life, you are so packed 

With possibility. Old age seems good. 
The ache, the anguish - we could bear them we 
Declare. The ones who pray plead with their God 
To turn the murdering ministers away, 
But they come softly shod.

Elizabeth Jennings

Monday 7 September 2015

Keeping Your Kids Catholic (xi)

Here is the next selection from the back catalogue on Keeping Your Kids Catholic over at the Catholic Dads Website.

There are six this time, rather than the customary five, for reasons which should become obvious if you follow the links.

Job Done?

On Holiday

A Touch On The Tiller

Catholic Guilt

Teenage Girls

Direction v. Autonomy

As ever, I have found these fascinating to re-read some five years on: Bernie was just starting University when I wrote these. Now she has finished, spent a year travelling, and has just moved out and is starting her first full time (as opposed to holiday) job, working as an Education Officer for Life.

Friday 4 September 2015

Keeping Your Kids Catholic (x)

After a couple of days off (it has been peculiarly hectic here, with Bernie preparing to leave home for her new job (and needing to buy a car etc in readiness), Charlie preparing to go to University, (and preparing to re-sit his Driving Test...) and Dominique desperately trying to get 10 pieces of Art done before term starts)... after, as I say, a few days off, here is the latest in my exciting series of old posts from my featured column on the Catholic Dads' wwwsite, on Keeping Your Kids Catholic.

The Temptations of the Flesh

Resisting the Devil

Bernie in Barcelona

Why Didn't Our Lord Marry?

Happy Feast Day

Tuesday 1 September 2015

An Offer You Must Refuse!

I am currently reading Surely You're Joking, Mr Feynman!, a collection of autobiographical sketches by the great physicist Richard Feynman.

There are many lovely anecdotes, including the one where two Universities are in a Dutch auction for him, and he decides simply to stay put at Caltech. Later, a third tries to bribe him away, and he won't even let them tell them how much salary they want to offer him. 

A week later, he gets a letter, quoting a huge salary, and he replies: 'After reading the salary, I've decided I must refuse. The reason I have to refuse a salary like that is I would be able to do what I've always wanted to do - get a wonderful mistress, put her up in an apartment, buy her nice things... With the salary you have offered me, I could actually do that, and I know what would happen to me. I'd worry about her, what she's doing; I'd get into arguments when I came home, and so on. All this bother would make me uncomfortable and unhappy. I wouldn't be able to do physics well, and it would be a big mess! What I've always wanted to do would be bad for me, so I've decided I can't accept your offer.'


You can see why he was a great mind!

Keeping Your Kids Catholic (ix)

Here are the next links to my old series on Keeping Your Kids Catholic over at the Catholic Dads' wwwsite.

A Great Paradox

Boyfriends and Girlfriends

Off To Chartres

Back From Chartres

Living In The World