Thursday, September 28, 2006

Some assignments:

I'm gonna be pretty busy the next week or so. Here is an overview of some of my assignments I have to work on.

-A short exegesis on Exodus 3, The Burning Bush. I think I'm gonna zero in on verse 5 which talks a bit about Reverence.

-A critique of a scholarly article for my Old Testament class. I've read half of the article, and its basically a feminist/liberation article.

-An outline of a book on the Eucharist for my class on the liturgy. I have chosen the book, "The Holy Eucharist" by Aidan Nichols, O.P. (I strongly recomend it)

-An instruction on an aspect of the Liturgy to a specific audience or church event. I will be composing a presentation geared towards adult men about full active and concious participation in the liturgy.

-A five page paper on the topic of Faith and Reason in the writings of Pope John Paul II and Benedict XVI.

I'm most excited for the last assignment on this list, the one on Faith and Reason. I will get to compare the great encyclical Fides et Ratio by John Paul II to the (very controversial, at least according to the media) recent address by Pope Benedict at Regensburg. It should be interesting.

Fides et Ratio, literally Faith and Reason, is something that I think everyone should read. If you are catholic, it is vital for you to know the way faith and reason work together in truth. The reason you should read it is that I'm tired of hearing people think that the Church is opposed to Science and the like. But if you aren't Catholic, then I think you should read this too, because you also won't give off the impression that the Church is opposed to Science and the like. Its a very easy read, and you can find it on the vatican website. Here is a link.

Take it easy, have a good weekend. I won't because I'm under pressure with all these assignments. And now for your youtube video... you guessed it:

Tuesday, September 26, 2006

C U When U Get There

The Nike Run Hit Remix was very very fun. It was a 5 mile race, but along the course there were some stages set up where some hip-hop acts from the 90s were playing. These acts included Debbie Gibson, Young MC, Vanilla Ice, Coolio, Digital Underground, and De La Soul.

We stayed at St. Vincent's Catholic Church which is located right across the street from the USC campus. We woke up early and walked over to the starting line, which was at the LA memorial Colliseum. On the way, we walked by one of the stages and saw Young MC doing his soundcheck. William, A seminarian from the Diocese of Orange, and I ran up to the stage and began calling out for the song Principle's Office. Mr. MC was not impressed and gave us quite a nasty stare.

The amount of people at the starting line was overwhelimng. At the beginning it was hard to actually run because the volume of people was so huge. But it wasn't too long before we were at the first stage... Young MC! I fought myself to the front and started yelling for Principle's office again. He just looked at me and said, "Come on man! I'm like 40 years old! I don't do that one anymore!" It was pretty rad.

The way that 'nilla Ice was set up was pretty good in theory because we got to see him twice. But really it was lame because we had to see him twice. I'm gonna pull the "if you can't say anything nice then don't say anything at all" card out now and leave it at that, but you should know it wasn't the music that makes me say that.

Next, we found ourselves in the USC Frat Row. A lot of the fraternities and sororities were out cheering us on, which was actually kind of cool. It was right in the midst of the houses that Coolio was set up. I must say that I really really enjoyed Coolio. I wanted to hear "Fantastic Voyage," but instead we got "C U When U Get There," which was great to hear. He had a dude on a saxaphone playing with him, and everyone was really into it.

The next group of musicians was kind of a nice surprise, actually. A Gospel Choir from one of the local Baptist Churches was out seeing some hymns. Respek.

It was, however, about this time (only 3.5 miles in), that I started getting really sore. I pushed it until Digital Underground when I heard "The Humpty Dance playing." We just missed it though, so we stuck around for a wuick listen and then finished.

Our final time was about an hour and four minutes, but about 15-20 minutes, I'd guess, was spent listening to the acts. At the finish line, De La Soul was playing, and we got free Jamba Juice, which was cool.Unfortuneately I don't have any pictures, but if any are made available, I'll post them.

Friday, September 22, 2006

Fun Run

This weekend, a few other guys from the seminary and I will be heading over to the USC campus for for the Nike Run Hit Remix. It is basically a 5 mile race, but there are bands playing every mile or so.

This is going to be a great event because it combines two of my favorite things: music and running. Oh... Wait a minute... I hate running. Its pizza I like. Danget.

Anyways, since I already paid my non-refundable payment, I'll just have to tough this one out I guess. I'll hopefully get some pictures taken so I can share them with you. And, I'll have the sounds of Coolio, De La Soul, Digital Underground and Young MC. Hey Young, Don't send me to the Principle's Office! Heh heh.

Anyways, if 'Nilla Ice doesn't play this song, I'm going to be one disapointed runner.
Peace. Word to your mother!

Sunday, September 17, 2006

Hollywood

I actually made my first trip into Hollywood last Thursday. I haven't written about until now because I... really haven't wanted to. But now I will. It was a very very fun time. The reason???

MINI KISS!


And this time, Adam was actually in the band! Here I am with him, and his girlfriend Terra:


We had a freakin awesome time, as I'm sure you can imagine. They played at a club in West Hollywood called the Key Club. It wasn't bad once I was in there, but I must say that the Sunset Strip was not my type of place. I think these representatives from America's Heavy Metal community say it best.

Hollywood is the stinking rotting festering epitomy of lameness... well maybe that takes it too far. But really, this area is filled with people trying so hard to be cool, and I'm happy I didn't have to spend too much time here. I wish I was back in Bellingham to be honest. At the 3B. Had it not closed.

Well, anyways. Thank you Adam and Mini Kiss for showing me a great time. I hope you come back soon.

For more pictures of the evening, please visit my flickr page, which is linked on the right hand side of this page.

Friday, September 15, 2006

Thought You Could Use a Psyche Out!

Steeeeeeve Perry. Steeeeeeeve Perry.
Journey psyche outs are still ok by my rules.

Thursday, September 14, 2006

My Letter to the Archbishop

I am in the middle of a crucial portion of my discernment. Just this morning, I had to write a letter to the Archbishop of Seattle, petitioning him to admit me to Candidacy for Orders. Up until now my status as a seminarian has been informal. Its about to become formal, should the Archbishop accept my petition.

Candidacy is done at different times, depending on the seminary and Diocese. Some of the Africans here recieved their candidacy at the end of College. Most seminaries in the US do it during third year, just prior to Diaconate ordinations. My seminary does them in first year, prior to the ministries of Reader and Acolyte. There isn't a right way to do it, but I kind of like the way my seminary does it, because it really is an important step and it makes sense to do them prior to the ministries. There are parts of the petition that relate to fostering the vocation, which is good to reinforce early, I think.

One interesting thing is that I cannot type the letter. It has to be written out by hand. This serves a practical purpose of making sure we understand exactly what we are asking for.

Here is the full text of the letter:

Dear Archbishop Brunett,

In accordance with the Motu Proprio of Pope Paul VI Ad Pascendum of August 15, 1972, I hereby submit my petition to be admitted to Candidacy for the Orders of Diaconate and Priesthood.

I recognize that this admission to Candidacy for Orders does not carry with it any of the duties, rights, or privileges of clerics. I realize, however, that in virtue of your acceptance of me as a candidate for the Orders of Diaconate and Priesthood I must care for my vocation and foster it. I also understand that I acquire the right to the necessary spiritual assistance by which I can develop my vocation and embrace God's will in my regard.

In presenting this petition I solemnly declare that I am actuated by no motive of fear, either physical or moral, and that I am in no way coerced by parent, relative, or any other person. I also declare that I am making this request of my own free will, and that I am motivated by a desire to serve God and his people through ordained ministry.

I respectfully ask for your blessing.

Sincerely...

So thats my petition. If the Archbishop accepts it, then in a couple of weeks the seminary rector will stand up after Mass and announce whether or not we have been called. It will be a little nerveracking to see if anyone doesn't make it (which at this point will usually be their own decision to leave). I can't imagine anyone would leave, but it happened last year to a guy I thought for sure would make it to ordination. Once we are called, we will be formally admitted in the seminary chapel in October.

Please pray for me and my classmates during this crucial time of our discernment.

Monday, September 11, 2006

Sesquicentennial plus One

UPDATE: I was half asleep when I made that last post, and I didn't relize at the time, but my wording accidently slammed Shelley, and made me look like a total jerk. I hope none of you saw it, as it was not the intention.

My 151st post! And its a picture my friend took of a parish back home in Bellingham!Other than the ugly number things on the side this is pretty sweet. Hopefully a bigger picture will be made available. If not, I'll just have to buy it.

Its Sacred Heart Church in Bellingham, Washington, upstairs in the balcony. And it was taken by the talented Shelley Mauss. So pick up a copy of Living Faith at your local Catholic Bookstore and let them know how freakin sweet you think the picture on the front is.

Keep up the good work Shelley.

Saturday, September 09, 2006

Tomfoolery

I began this blog almost one year ago at a time when there was a lot of transition in my life. Many of my frieds and family members were interested in what the seminary would be like and wanted to hear how things were going. After sending out one mass e-mail, I decided I never wanted to do it again. So I began this blog.

I thought briefly about a name. I had no idea what to call it, but I did know that the word "meandering" would not be used. I'm a little more original than that. But still, I'm not that original. I stole the name from the Simpsons... except for the seminarian part.

The episode I stole it from is from season seven (the best season of the simpsons, hands down). Its called "22 Short Films About Springfield," or something like that. One of my favorite characters from the show of all time, Professor Frink, runs in at the end as the credits are rolling with the title of his show, "The Tomfoolery of Professor Frink." This is actually the moment when I became a Frink fan.

Tomfoolery seemed appropriate as well since I wasn't looking to write a theologically driven blog. Obvioulsy, I'm a man of faith and love the church's theology and study it, but until I'm qualified to teach it, I wont be publishing much of it on the internet. One reason is that I'm not is that there are bloggers doing a better job than I can (see the links on the side). Another is that I don't want to get a label pinned on me prior to ordination (if you don't know what I mean here, then you are lucky).

But I do think that this blog has its purpose other than just being some random dude writing about his life. When I was discerning the vocation and considering seminary I would have loved to have seen something like this. I would have liked to have seen someone blogging their journey, from class, to other aspects of formation, to what they do for fun.

It is honestly difficult to keep this up though. Some things I write about might not seem "very priestly" as some people put it. Sometimes, my immaturity might show through in what I right. Sometimes I write too quickly and publish some sort of garbage loaded with spelling errors. With this in mind, I must confess that this blog serves an important purpose in my formation as well, in that it is preparing me to be a public person and a representative of the Church.

I hope you'll enjoy the blog this year, but I realize its not for everyone. Still, please feel free to comment. Its nice to know who finds this thing. And please pray for me and my fellow seminarians as we continue on to be formed for service in the Church.

God bless you all. Now, here is a short Youtube clip of Professor Frink from a Halloween special:

Friday, September 08, 2006

A few words on this semester...

For those of you who don't know, I am currently in year two of a six year formation program. Last year I studied philosophy, and this year I am beginning Theology. Here is an outline of my courses.

Intermediate Spanish - Although I feel like a beginner still. All the other guys in my class are new, and have all had at least two years. I've only had one year so far, and am already struggling.

Fundamental Theology - This class has a strong philsophical component and is very foundational to the studies I will have over the next four years. It focuses on the relationship between faith and reason.

Scripture: Genesis through Kings - Pretty straight forward here.

Homiletics - basically an introduction to public speaking.

Introduction to Christian Spirituality - the only class I haven't had yet. Basically some theology on spirituality and prayer.

Itroduction to Liturgy - with focus on Mass and Liturgy of the hours.

Intermediate Greek - a continuation of the class I had last year. I've got my greek new testament ready to go!

A pretty heavy load. Eighteen credits total. The semester is off to a great start.

I was also made the head sacristan at the seminary this year... which is interesting. I've never worked in a sacristy before, and now I'm in charge of a really big one. Its fun though. Getting up early in the morning when it is quiet and setting up for Holy Mass is an interesting experience.

I have a couple posts planned for the weekend. One will be on the Notre Dame game. I found a great place to watch games. Its a place called Cabo Cantina, and the reason its cool is that the Notre Dame club of Los Angeles has their Game Watch parties there. They even have a band there playing the fight song and stuff.

I also want to post a little bit about why I named this blog the Tomfoolery of a Seminarian.

Happy Birthday Mary. Go ND.

Wednesday, September 06, 2006

Rats

The Seminary, St. Johns, is definately California style. There are lots of courtyards and rarely do you walk anywhere without walking outside. Well on a sunny day that definately has its ups, but it also has its downs. Sometimes wild animals find their way into courtyard. We had a bobcat last year which was cool, but what just happened to me was purely frightening.

I've never been afraid of rats, but I think I'm going to start.

I'm talking to a couple of pre-theologians in the walkway where announcements are posted. Then, all of a sudden, this rat books it around the corner. I see it coming, and back away expecting it to run past. Instead it decided it wanted to come say hello, so it started coming towards me. I kept backing up, but I couldn't move fast enough, and soon it was on my foot, and in my pant leg. I kid you not! I had a rat pinned between my jeans and my leg!

The funny thing was, the other guys never saw the rat, so all of a sudden they just saw me kicking around and cursing (yes I cursed. Mea Culpa). Then finally after what seemed like a while, but was really only about 2 seconds, the rat popped out and ran away. Then for about 5 minutes, we laughed hysterically.

When I'm ordained, I'm going to work this into a homily.

Monday, September 04, 2006

Robots

When I was in college, I went to a robot theme party. It was the coolest thing ever. The guys wrapped everything in their house in alluminum foil. Plus we were all dressed like robots. But we had nothing on this dude. I came across this video a couple years ago.
I was thrilled though to find this one last night of the same guy.
This kid will go far.

Friday, September 01, 2006

Stupid Dave Matthews

He had his California concerts while I was in Washington and his Washington concerts are going on right now... and I'm in California.

And to make matters worse, my phone has been ringing non-stop with people calling me to tell me they are at the Gorge right now waiting for the concert.

Yeah, I haven't liked the guy's new stuff that much, but it would be fun to be with my friends at the Gorge. I miss you all. A lot.