October, 2013

DIY: Installing a French Drain in DC

A crew of 20 from People of Praise Community helped our DC House Director, Ryan Hehman, install a 60 foot French Drain. We hope this will prevent water from flooding into the basements between our new DC houses…We are waiting on the next storm to test if it works!

Self Taught Ninja Gymnastics!

We have known these brothers for four years. The oldest is nine, and we were shocked when they busted out a handspring and backflip routine. They are some fearless kids, and they use the slope of their yard to help finish some of their jumps. This is basically self taught, and the cell phone video does not do them justice.

Maybe we should try to get them some cheerleading scholarships! Notice how they have a “Dark Side.”

The Cure for Poverty

William Barclay pointed out, “We will never change men from the outside. New houses, new conditions, better material things only change the surface. It is the task of Christianity to make, not new things, but new men.” Many programs have tried using material things, productivity, accomplishment, and education to make someone realize their dignity, meaning, happiness, or fulfillment. Unfortunately, all of these approaches have failed to achieve even one of these ends.

The only approach remaining is Love. “God,” wrote Lacordaire, “has willed that no good should be done to man except by loving him, and that insensibility should be forever incapable either of giving him light, or inspiring him to virtue.”

When it is not clear how to apply love to a problem, it is useful to reflect on the words of Mother Teresa: “Jesus is the unwanted to be wanted. Jesus is the beggar to give him a smile. Jesus is the drunkard to listen to Him. Jesus is the drug addict to befriend Him. Jesus is the prostitute to remove from danger and befriend Her. Jesus is the prisoner to be visited. Jesus is the old to be served. To me: Jesus is my God.”

April 2005

Commercial For the OG Lawnmower Repair Man

This was spontaneously filmed by Clark Massey and Br. Joseph Quinlan OFM Cap. Besides the excellent interview skills, you will notice that Br. Joe has serious camera skills. I think the interview gets more interesting (4:12) when Luis talks about how he learned his trade and providing for his family. This is one of the sweetest guys I have met in KC, and please send him some business and/or prayers.

Is Death God’s Will?

This is our friend Fr. Adam responding to a question about death. He is speaking off the cuff, and we (his fans) find it interesting. He said this during the Simple House retreat, and we hope to have more videos by Fr. Adam Ryan.

Papal endorsement for A Simple House?

Contrary to media coverage, here are the most radical revelations from the Pope’s interview with Jesuit magazines!

“When it comes to social issues, it is one thing to have a meeting to study the problem of drugs in a slum neighborhood and quite another thing to go there, live there and understand the problem from the inside and study it. There is a brilliant letter by Father Arrupe to the Centers for Social Research and Action on poverty, in which he says clearly that one cannot speak of poverty if one does not experience poverty, with a direct connection to the places in which there is poverty. The word insertion is dangerous because some religious have taken it as a fad, and disasters have occurred because of a lack of discernment. But it is truly important.”

Baby Girl’s New Truck

For my whole life, I have loved everything to do with electricity. I have a vocation to be a nun electrician or an electric nun.


Demolition Day

We frequently do our own home renovations.

Loving the Hopeless Cases

Complete Charitable Acts

A complete charitable act should have three parts which please God: the sacrifice, the caring and appreciative interaction of rich and poor, and the actual tangible alleviation of suffering. Modern charity and government programs often fail to capture even two of these three aspects. They can be obligatory, faceless, and received with a sense of entitlement. Sometimes they do not even alleviate physical suffering.

May 2004