Another road trip from Montpellier, this one to Sommières

Since we’d reserved a rental car for four days, I felt a certain obligation to make the most use of it. Thursday morning, after lingering a little too long over breakfast, we got in the car to visit Uzès, an ancient walled village that dates back to pre-medieval times, about a 90-minute drive from Montpellier. … Continue reading Another road trip from Montpellier, this one to Sommières

A few photos from Montpellier before hit the road

Not long after our safe arrival Saturday in Montpellier, the Gilets Jaunes protests started to get interesting, more or less outside our window. First they marched up the street, then they marched down the street. Then we heard a commotion and returned to the window to see a line of police in riot gear. A … Continue reading A few photos from Montpellier before hit the road

Just a quick status update and a change of plans

This is going to be brief, since we’re heading out in a few minutes to join a friend who gives tours of Montpellier, and then probably out for a few drinks with him after that. We’ve moved up our planned side trip to Lourdes. We originally planned to go next Saturday for just the day. … Continue reading Just a quick status update and a change of plans

Notre Dame de Paris during a late evening stroll along the Seine

I put this photo of Notre Dame de Paris Cathedral on my blog many years ago. In light of the news out of Paris today, I thought I’d share it again. Kathryn took the photo in September 2007 during our first visit to Paris together, a little over a year before we were married. We … Continue reading Notre Dame de Paris during a late evening stroll along the Seine

The old and new basilicas of Our Lady of Guadalupe, Mexico City

While looking through my photos from last year, I noticed one from our Mexico City pilgrimage that never ended up on the blog. There are two basilicas of Our Lady of Guadalupe shown here. The old basilica, on the left with the golden dome, while still beautiful outside and inside, has suffered such extensive damage … Continue reading The old and new basilicas of Our Lady of Guadalupe, Mexico City

Earlier this week, I became a 47-year-old altar boy

Back around Christmastime, the priests at our parish started running announcements in the weekly bulletin, asking all males of any age to prayerfully consider becoming altar servers. Altar servers were in short supply, particularly for the weekday Masses.

From time to time, I attend the 6:30 am Mass before heading to work, and I’d witnessed the altar server shortage on a number of occasions. In fact, not too long ago, there was no altar server available twice in the same week.

Memento, homo, quia pulvis es, et in púlverem revertéris

Today is Ash Wednesday. It falls relatively late this year, March 6, as Easter will not arrive until April 21 for those of us in the Western churches. For me, Ash Wednesday also means it’s time for a rare selfie. This one is quite a disappointment compared to last year’s. Even after a lot of … Continue reading Memento, homo, quia pulvis es, et in púlverem revertéris

New altar rail at St. Stanislaus Catholic Church in Nashua, New Hampshire

Since Kathryn and I spend a lot of our weekends away from Phoenix, it’s not uncommon for us to find ourselves visiting another parish for Mass on any given Sunday. It is far less common for us to visit the same parish two Sundays in a row, although that’s exactly what happened the past two … Continue reading New altar rail at St. Stanislaus Catholic Church in Nashua, New Hampshire

The main altar of La Madeleine, Paris, just before a weekday Mass

Kathryn took this photo of the main altar of the Church of St. Mary Magdalene, La Madeleine, located in the heart of Paris, over five years ago, in January 2013. It was one of those right-place-right-time situations we like to take advantage of. We happened to be walking by the church just a few minutes … Continue reading The main altar of La Madeleine, Paris, just before a weekday Mass

Blessed to be called as godparents for another baptism

Two weekends ago, Kathryn and I were called to be godparents once again, this time for the baptism of a seven-week-old son of friends who live in Oro Valley, a town about ten miles north of Tucson. Kathryn is already godmother to the newly baptized’s older brother. Being called to godparenthood — my auto-correct seems … Continue reading Blessed to be called as godparents for another baptism

Photographs from Punta del Este, Uruguay

After a nice breakfast and a long morning walk through the city here in Montevideo, Kathryn and I are having a bit of a siesta in preparation for what will likely be an enormous steak lunch. That gives me time to post several leftover photos from Punta del Este. Just a few blocks from our … Continue reading Photographs from Punta del Este, Uruguay

A rainy day in Punta del Este, Uruguay

The weather didn’t look promising when we woke up this morning in Punta del Este, Uruguay. It deteriorated from there. As the day progressed, sprinkles became drizzle became steady rain. While it was still in the drizzle stage, we drove a few miles up the coast on the river side of Punta del Este. The … Continue reading A rainy day in Punta del Este, Uruguay

A few photographs from Colonia del Sacramento, Uruguay

Our stay in Colonia del Sacramento, Uruguay, was rather short, less than twenty-four hours. However, the charming old barrio is compact, so tourists can take in the highlights in a few hours. Some even visit as a day trip from Montevideo by bus or from Buenos Aires by ferry. The weather during our brief visit … Continue reading A few photographs from Colonia del Sacramento, Uruguay

Arrived at our apartment in Punta del Este, Uruguay

We arrived in Punta del Este, Uruguay, late yesterday afternoon and took a short taxi ride to our rental apartment. As is often the case with any sort of online booking, you don’t know what you’re getting until you get there. The location is excellent. We’re on the eleventh floor of a high-rise near the … Continue reading Arrived at our apartment in Punta del Este, Uruguay

Photographs from yesterday in Buenos Aires, Argentina

As was the case in Montevideo, we discovered quickly two nights was not enough, so we’ve extended our stay in Buenos Aires through tomorrow. However, we woke up this morning to steady rain, so a long walk like yesterday is not likely. We’ve decided to take in one or more of the city’s hundreds of … Continue reading Photographs from yesterday in Buenos Aires, Argentina

Ss. Peter and Paul Catholic Church, Waterloo, Illinois

A photo of the altar at Ss. Peter and Paul Catholic Church in Waterloo, Illinois. Kathryn and I attended Sunday Mass here this morning with our cousins and their family. After Mass, we witnessed the baptism of their youngest daughter at the baptismal font just to the left side of the altar.

Richmond, Virginia: Cathedral of the Sacred Heart

When I lived in Richmond, I wasn’t much of a church-goer. In the three years I lived there, I can count the number of times I attended Mass on one hand. Zero. Now, seven years later, attendance at Sunday Mass is part of my life. I don’t intentionally miss it. When planning our recent visit to Richmond, I found the Cathedral of the Sacred Heart has a Mass at 5:15 pm on Saturdays. It was a particularly convenient time, shortly after our arrival in town. It was also within walking distance of our hotel. We had a winner.

Mission San Xavier del Bac, the White Dove of the Desert near Tucson

During our recent weekend trip to Tucson, Kathryn and I took an opportunity to visit Mission San Xavier del Bac, just outside the city. As luck would have it, there was a Mass scheduled there Saturday morning. It was to celebrate the 366th birthday of Fr. Eusebio Kino, the Jesuit priest who founded the mission way back in 1692. So we made sure to schedule our visit to coincide.