Self-Blindfolded in Paradise

Just because I am God’s own, totally unique, God’s very own possession, what else can I do but sing of God’s goodness. My whole being sings.

                                                              Sr. Charleen Hug, S.N.D.

(She teaches theology at Notre Dame Academy in Toleodo, OH)

Self-Blindfolded in Paradise


Last week when I was in Florida, I took an early morning walk.  The morning sun felt good on my face.  I shook hands with a giant benjamina ficus tree by firmly grasping one of its root stalks, and I sensed the power and strength of this masterpiece of Nature.  Further along, I stopped to listen to a mocking bird in a large hibiscus tree with yellow bell-shaped flowers. For my benefit, the bird sang every song it has ever heard — non stop.

          When I passed a six-foot gardenia bush covered with white flowers that perfumed the area, I snapped off a flower to put in my buttonhole.  In all directions, there was lush green vegetation and shrubbery with bright red and orange flowers.  I thought that the word which best described the place was “paradise.”
          Then I saw a man walking forward me, with a dog on a leash and a cell phone held against his ear.  As we passed, he didn’t see me.  I startled him when I said, “Good morning!”

          He gave me a quick nod and pressed the phone closer to his face.

          “Communication’s a great thing,” I said.

          “You betcha,” he muttered as he passed on his way.

          As have millions of his compatriots, the poor fellow walking the dog is a victim of the Age of Distraction, which has been successfully nurtured by mobile technology.  iPods, Walkmans, cell phones and the yet-to-be-invented audio-communication tools entice us to be blind to that which is within our field of vision.  It is difficult to be a joyful Catholic when you are not aware of nearby people and things in which you should have interest.

          It is good to test ourselves occasionally to be sure we haven’t let modern hearing and speaking devices prevent us from quiet time. As Father Thomas Massard, S. J., wrote in a recent American magazine, “If technology is rendering this sort of deliberate oblivion more likely, then let’s unplug and make a choice for immediacy.”

          I think it’s important to be available and receptive to hear the Voice which needs no device to reach our ears.


(And what are your thoughts?)



Joyful Catholic Quiz

(The first to send the right answers will receive a gift copy of

Light Reading for Good and Wayward Catholics)


1.   Who were the women who discovered the empty tomb of Christ on Easter morning?


2 When a new Pope is elected, what is the color of the smoke that arises from the Vatican chimney?


3.  Who was St. Monica’s famous son?




Chuckle time

 (Church Bulletin) Now that we have a second baptism fount at the North Entrance of the church, babies can now be baptized at both ends.


My favorite priest

Don’t forget to submit your recommendation for your favorite priest above.


One thought on “Self-Blindfolded in Paradise

  1. Depends on which book you’re reading

    At least 5 women visited the tomb

    Mary Magdalene
    Mary the mother of James
    and other women.

    Most people hold that Mary Magdalene found the tomb empty

    White smoke – Habemus Papam …

    St. Augustine – Monica prayed and prayed for her son to be converted

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