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Member since: Wed Mar 24, 2010, 10:49 PM
Number of posts: 4,277

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About God and evolution

I believe in both God and evolution. What sometimes gets me wondering, is why have evolution to get to humans? I mean why the millions of years of dinosaurs? Why the strange odd creatures like the platypus? On the one hand, I see God's affinity with humans, being able to contemplate him, but on the other hand, it seems evolution is a dynamic process that could go any which way, depending on the circumstances. So in my mind, it is not inevitable to have humans. Also I think Jesus coming to earth as God's son, also strengthens the argument that God meant for there to be humans. So these are some thoughts that come up in my mind. I have always been fascinated with wildlife and its divergent ways. It seems like maybe there is a law that a creature cannot be created whole cloth, that it has to come from an evolution from basic components of single cell up. So that God is the one to bring all the necessary components together to start the beginnings of life on earth. But was it inevitable to lead to humans?

The Hunter and the Goat, a moral fable

A very good moral fable about a hunter hunting a goat and his mystical experience.

It was a day in the present that became a day from the past and a path to the future. It was a hoop bending backwards and then forwards through time.

Once upon the present, there was a hunter on the trail of a she-goat, a bighorn sheep, a ewe. He was chasing the wild goat in some high hills, filled with rocks, in a big sky landscape in the undulating terrain of the state of Idaho.


Trump ramblings

I am the great and all powerful Trump. Hear me speak. I gather together all who would believe me and believe me there is no shortage of those who I can bring to my feet. I was born great and I get greater all the time. I have great hair and a great body. I don’t even exercise, that is for chumps. I have my hair done by a great hair stylist, she is the greatest. If it is hate groups who are my biggest supporters, then it is hate that I will peddle. I wouldn’t mind peddling dope, but my grandfathers would be against that. I like to continue the legacy of white supremacy for my family. And you can see that in my children, who stare at you with the cold hearts I raised them with. The wall I will build may take a century to build, but nevermind that, I will get it started, a small piece. Hey maybe I can get the Chinese to build it, they did such a great job with their own wall, a great wall. Maybe I can even sell pieces of the wall at the Trump Tower. Hey, I was great in the Apprentice wasn’t I. I couldn’t give a fig about charities, but I played the role well. Biggest show on TV. I don’t believe in charity. Survival of the fittest. How can you know who is meant to rise and who is meant to fall if not for the struggle, and leaving people behind to die in the dust.

I am the ruler of the world and don’t forget it. I could nuke North Korea if I wanted to and no one can stop me. No one gets in my way. Kelly won’t be around for long. I will give him the boot. No one stands between me and my audience. I don’t need anyone anyway, I am the president now. No one beats me. Make America Great Again, is Keep Me Great. I’m not scared of Mueller. So what if I have investments in Russian enterprise. Putin said there was no interference in the election and that is all I needed to hear. Besides it is all about winning, no matter what way it is done. Send all the black people back to Africa. Send the Mexicans back to Mexico. Close all the borders. Make America all White again. Make women kiss men’s feet. And if they start to look like Hags, dump them. I don’t know how long Melania’s looks will last, but she knows she better look hot or else. My wives and children know who is the master. Long live Trump, the best dictator in the World. As for the Republicans, they can kiss my lily white ass. I have never worked hard in my life and never read a book, and I never will. Golf is my occupation, my real love. I am good at tearing things down though, abortion rights, women’s rights, citizen right’s, all down the toilet under my reign. Flush them down my gold toilet and they should be thankful for my kiss goodbye.

Brown Bears, Katmai National Park, Alaska Webcam


The link works in Firefox, but it did not work in Internet Explorer.

Idaho Wolves, State of the Nation, Meeting with Spirit Wolf and Spirit Human

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Wolf and the Voices Speaking For Them Meet Together

( Pia Isan deaseN nanitewazai nahma) In Shoshone [/font size=4] [/font color=blue] [/font size]

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A gathering in the sky of big spirit of Wolf, a Human voice for the wolves in the spirit world and a sentinel Wolf from the Southern Mountain Range territory in Idaho. They meet in the sky above Borah Peak, the highest mountain in Idaho.

Wolf Spirit: Thank you for meeting us and to you wolf sentinel for traveling so far up to the peak of Mt. Borah to talk and listen. You know that Wolves were here long before the human beings. Then came the exterminations by the guns. Thanks to many caring humans, Wolves were reintroduced to our native land in Idaho, Wyoming and Montana in 1995. Since care and management of Wolves was transferred from Obama and Salazar to Gov Otter in Idaho, we have faced persecution again by a minority of the humans in Idaho who use the land for their own money-making purposes, hunting and ranching. Our fate is now in the hands of the humans across the globe who care about us, to live free again from persecution. We are listening now to the humans to see how we can gain advantages in this fight.

Wolf Sentinel: There are only 8 of us now in the Southern Mountains. Our numbers are small. We are now over 600 wolves in Idaho, but they keep wanting to kill all of us. What shall we do. Who will help us.

Spirit Human : There are many humans across the land in the United States as well as in other countries who want the wolves to live unmolested, who see the wolf as the apex predator, with great skill, intelligence, and beauty. Recently two of the humans in Idaho, who make a living killing the wildlife held a contest to see who could kill the largest and the most Wolves and Wolves’ little Brother, the Coyote. They even invited children to participate in this killing contest and held it near the holy day of Christmas. There was a petition started by Judy B. I have gathered some of their opinions for us to hear. I let it flow gently down the Snake River as we all listen to what they have to say.

Ssshhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh, words traveling down the Snake River. [/font color]

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Voices of the Sages
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"He who kills, kills himself, and whosoever eats the flesh of beasts eats the body of death."- Jesus Christ The Essene Gospel of Peace (taken from the Dead Sea Scrolls)
"Compassion for animals is intimately connected with goodness of character; and it may be confidently asserted that he who is cruel to animals cannot be a good man". Arthur Schopenhauer

"If you have men who will exclude any of God's creatures from the shelter of compassion & pity, you will have men who will deal likewise with their fellow men" - FRANCIS OF ASSISI

Because the heart beats under a covering of hair, of fur, feathers, or wings, it is, for that reason, to be of no account? -Jean Paul Richter, writer (1763-1825)
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Who is Behind this wolf killing, wealthy ranchers and hunters
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people are slaughtering OUR wolves in favor of your moneyed interests big fat wallets. wealthy cattle & sheep ranchers and wealthy trophy hunting

The real tragedy is that Wolf Slaughter is done in the Name of Convenience, Wealthy Sheep Ranchers, and Gun Rights!

Why are hunters and ranchers interests given preference over wildlife and wild lands? Because the Animal Agriculture lobby in D.C. is HUGE! Want them to listen? Start boycotting for an entire year, or more, the 'products' that ranchers are grazing and selling - we will have Earth's wolves back on the endangered list in no time. My family, my friends,and I have been doing this and will continue to so so - boycotting beef and lamb is no sacrifice compared to losing wolves to extinction! Enough of this Dark Ages killing of wolves!

these people are the scum of the earth, look at a beautiful wolf and get an overwhelming admiration

"Idaho For Wildlife" is a gross misnomer, neanderthals and "animal terrorists" spin-off group of the mindless NRA
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The wildlife agency [font color=purple]

your agency is not 'honest', moved away from wildlife protection. To endorse species genocide is mentality of a serial killer.
Idaho Dept of Fish and Game should change their name to the Slaughter of Wildlife Dept.

I think that we need to look at getting rid of the Fish and Game dept everywhere. They are only made up of a few people who make decisions like this that everyone is powerless to override. Sopporting this company of killers is a waste of our taxpayers money. Leave the wild life alone. And stop encouraging children to kill for the fun of it.

stole wolves from Canada, dumped them in the wild, without a pack, and when they succeed, you start to murder them??? Need their heads examined.

I can't believe you people. Millions in federal money was not spent to restore a species so you could extinct it all over again. Pull your head out of your ass, Idaho. You suck donkeys.

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What is wrong with Idaho [font color=tan]

Idaho falls into category of most uneducated, ignorant, wildlife-unfriendly places in the US.

Idaho, you have seen the last of my money. Not anything grown, produced, manufactured , originating until your people rejoin the humane race

Guess what Idaho? I haven't bought one of your potatoes in over six years now. And I won't buy any or anything else from Idaho for a long, long, time so long as I continue to hear the name of the state mentioned in connection with hare-brained and cruel/destructive measures related to wolves.

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Native Idahoans
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I live in Salmon where you lump all of us. Not all of us support this. Not signing my name cause of death threats floating all over

I live in Idaho, this makes me embarrassed

I am a native Idahoan. I am shocked and embarrassed

Please don't condemn all of Idaho, the majority of the population here is strongly against this group Idaho For Wildlife and their antics.

My family has property bordering the Challis National Forest, the Sawtooth Wilderness area, in the Stanley Valley in central Idaho. Wolf reintroduction was *successful* and created jobs & ecotourism to the area. Big Ranchers sabotaged that successful tax-paid program with cynical spin & outright lies. Wolves are *crucial* to sustainability and natural balance in the area.

As a property owner in Twin Falls county as well as in Twin Falls itself, I feel that is my responsibility to take action on this subject. This contest is an obscene activity, that I can not condone. It is time for the idiots in charge to protect our ecosystem.

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Voices against murder [font color=red]

murdering living, breathing, thinking, feeling beings! They love their family and protect unto their own death. Just like you. They grieve They are traumatized

Respect your fellow earthlings! treat animals with and then we can respect ourselves.
Disgusting there are still primitive hominids walking around killing wolves in this day and age.

Excuse me, what year is it again? need to get these people out of the Dark Ages.

Hunting used to be a source of food for people living in caves. Today it is useless and unethical. use your bare hands if you want to enjoy a fair contest with wild animals

More evidence that the United States mentality has barely left the Stone Age.

All nations have groups who are deranged and being small minded and empty beings, they turn to primitive, basic instincts i.e. cruel killing, to boost their egos and make them feel superior.

America is supposed to be a morally advanced country, the practices it's allowing to go on are similar to those in the Roman Colosseum thousands of years ago.

I understand the killing of animals for food, I don't understand the killing of animals for enjoyment. That's
probably because I'm not a psychopath.

Stop killing our wild life. Hunting is not a sport, it is not entertainment. It is murder.

Hunting: the ultimate sport for cowards! I should know. I used to be one myself!

enough of your punk insanity! we will never give up, till we stop you heartless creeps!!

When I was younger my family encouraged me to become a hunter. Now years later I truly regret this part of my life. Killing, for the sake of killing, is not something to be passed down to our children.

Is this how hunters interpret the North American Model for wildlife conservation: Kill for killing sake?

Bloodlust entertainment for ignorant people to distract their attention from their true enemies, the oligarchy. Harden the children from any empathy for life so they can go and serve the industrial-military-security complex. Children who are taught such lessons can also enter a school and kill others.

Too bad these animals can't hunt humans. Humans claim the animals are encroaching onto their territory. It's humans encroaching onto the animals territory.

Why are humans considered the most "civilized" species again? Things like this make me think we're actually at the bottom of the ladder.

We live with Coyotes right across the street from us in an abandoned farm house. We have dogs and the coyotes do not bother us and we don't bother them. The coyotes help us by eating apples that fall from the trees in our orchard and they eat field mice and voles. We do not kill mice or voles the coyotes do it for us. Without them we would be overrun with mice in farm country here in the Midwest. I don't understand if the rest of the U.S. can learn to live with wolves and coyotes why can't the people of Idaho?

Wolves have been here for thousands of years, they lived in harmony with the native Americans, were even honored by them. The white man is a curse upon this land, and if not stopped he will destroy all that's precious to us. His dark ignorance and his love of violence is taking away the rights of all creatures that get in his way. His karma is going to be crushing when it comes upon him.

Idaho, you need to move into the21 st century. The 'Little Red Riding Hood' syndrome needs to STOP. Why don't you people go join the army if your need to kill is all comsuming for you. Oh wait, then someone will be shooting back. Not your cup of tea. You only want to shoot something that can't shoot back.....

big brave hunters, I love the noble wolves. Shame on you.

humans more important than animals?. sages explain we are responsible for G-ds creatures

the moment we stop killing, our kids will stop killing other human beings in classrooms.

just go out and enjoy nature - take a camera. These animals are beautiful

Use Kangal Dogs - protect villages, farmers and livestock keep predators out

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Voices of humor [font color=pink]

How much does a trophy-hunter tag cost? I'm going hunting

Save a Wolf shoot a hunter. Save a Coyote shoot a hunter.

At last! Proof that there is no God. God made man in his own image. Man shot God remarking upon the ugliness of the catch. He then gave his son the gun in an effort to bond and the boy shot him. Hurray.

How many wolves and coyotes are in Idaho? There must be MILLIONS and MILLIONS and MILLIONS of wolves and coyotes in Idaho for you Idaho families to fear for your lives over. Mercy me! Let's get 10,000 TANKS UP TO YOUR PEOPLE to protect you all from those wolves and coyotes and how about some nuclear bombs!!!!! I bet you Idaho folks could use some nuclear bombs to wipe out all those wolves and coyotes that are a threat to your security. Oh, you poor,poor Idaho folks, I will pray that God Himself will send you a GIANT asteroid to kill all those wolves and coyotes to!!!

I want to save the wolves, but I would also like to apply for an Idaho non-resident otter-hunting permit. I don't care if the limit is just one otter, but I would like the head of a Butch Otter on my basement wall.

Do I want 10-year olds to learn to shoot to kill? Hmm, let's see... " Look there--Shoot that durned wolf, over there,sonny! Yeah, aim careful! aim careful...SHOOT! Gol durn, you got 'im! Mommy and Daddy and Grandma and Grampa will be SO PROUD OF YA! Oh, gosh, he's not DEAD yet--don't worry, just because he's thrashing around, and screaming, and blood's spurting out of the bullet hole doesn't necessarily mean he's hurting. Nah! He's just getting around to dying. ARE YOU CRYING? Why on earth would you...? SHUT UP! You're embarrassing me, ya little crybaby! Shut up or I'll take that gun from you and shut you up proper! Ya yellow-bellied wissy, sissy girlie--that's what you are--a GIRL! I thought you were a big boy. Look--the damned wolf is dead, finally--see how quiet he's layin' there? Now you jist go on over there and put your hands in that beautiful red blood, feel how warm it is..... HEY, COME BACK HERE, YA LITTLE COWARD!" Down with this GUTSY NUTSY IDAHO killer idea!

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Map of people who signed the petition to Stop the Wolf and Coyote Killing Contest in Idaho December 2013

Coyote Hunting Contest, Dillon, Montana Jan 10, 11 and 12, 2014

January 6, 2013

Coyote Hunting Contest, Dillon, Montana, on January 10, 11 and 12, 2014. “Dog Days of Winter Coyote Derby”.

It is hosted by Rocky Mountain Supply who sells “Everything for the farmer, rancher, and traveler”. It is also being supported and advertised by The Montana Outdoor Radio Show, that also has a webpage with paragraph length articles by several writers, including by “Angela Montana”, who seems to take a special relish in the job of writing blurbs on killing coyotes, wolves and all other wildlife.

This is the 2nd Coyote Hunting Contest in Dillon, Montana. The first one was in February 2013. As described by Angela Montana, the contest was started by Tyler Linse, a college student working at Rocky Mountain Supply. “We thought it would be a fun way to spend a winter weekend and help manage the coyotes in the area”, said Linse. Ten coyotes were killed in the contest.

Dillon, Montana is in Southwest Montana. It is just 65 miles from Salmon, Idaho, who held a Wolf and Coyote Killing Contest on December 28 and 29, 2013. Both Salmon Idaho and Dillon Montana are surrounded by national forests including Yellowstone National Park. Salmon Idaho has a population of 3000, and Dillon, Montana, 4000. Of note, Great Harvest Bread Company has its headquarters in Dillon, Montana.

From an article on dogfighting in Montana by the organization, All Creatures, “Most people know by now that killing coyotes doesn’t “manage” their numbers, proving that these folks have some catching-up to do…or that it really IS all about bloodlust.”

If you want to voice your opinion on this contest, you can post a message to the following people.

Rocky Mountain Supply, Dillon Montana

Montana Outdoor Radio Show

Great Harvest Bread

Montana Tourism

All Creatures, Working for a Peaceful World for Humans, Animals and the Environment

Article on Coyote Derby in February 2013

Montana Outdoor writer Angela Montana

Catholic Worker letters by my Dad to Dorothy Day, 1950s

My father had a farm in Missouri from 1950 or so to 1961. He tried to use it partly as a Catholic Worker farm. I found some letters he wrote to Dorothy Day that were printed in the Catholic Worker.

It might be interesting to someone. Here is his first letter and a link to the other letters at the end.

Here is a link to an article on the Catholic Worker Farms too.


Novice on the Land

Big Springs, Missouri

July-August, 1953 page five

Dear Editors:
Every once in a while I review all the circumstances that led Frances and me to our present setup. Collectively, they sound like something Horatio Alger dreamt about after a sardine and cake nightcap. First of all, let me say that I've always wanted to be a farmer from paper route on down, but friends and family succeeded in convincing me that a bit citied guy from Green Bay, Wisconsin, shouldn't dream about pitching manure. The idea settled comfortably in the subconscious and waited for future references. I think I almost flunked out of high school. If my Latin teacher hadn't died a month before graduation, I would have. The war came and I confused patriotism with indecision and found myself in the service at a very tender age. These years went fast though, and after it was all over I still had my indecision. College looked appetizing and so did the subjects. Let's see now, believe I started with Electrical Engineering as a major, switched to pre-med the second semester, over to English the third and rounded off my dabble in education by sampling Jesuit psychology. After that, I had nothing left to do but enter the Trappists, which I did , for an alternately stupendous and miserable four months. Everyone was very kind to me there and sometimes the thought that I would ever leave seemed absurd to say the least. I kept hounding the novice master to let me dye my brown shoes black but he wisely forestalled such a move. I think I cooperated with God's grace one afternoon out in the cow barn at Gethsemane, I crawled into a pen with a couple of little newborn calves, let them suck my fingers and wondered why in the heck I couldn't have the simplicity of the monastery, the beauty and quiet, the dedication somewhere outside.

My mother lived in Chicago now, and that's where I headed after leaving. Father Louis (Thomas Merton, the monk was his novice master) had mentioned Friendship House, so I contacted them and started spending three afternoons a week, working in the clothing room and helping out on their soup line. It was there that I met Fred O'Connell, Will Mische and Johnny Cronin and the beginnings of Peter Maurin House in Chicago. We worked together abut a year, trying to take care of ten tor twelve men at two houses and dishing out about twenty gallons of soup down on skid row each night. During this time, we held little meetings each week at some home or rectory or tavern, discussing our progress, our aims. I argued the city was no place for man. I talked of a lay monastery, lay community, a place where these fellows from skid row could live for a while, where they wouldn’t feel the ostracism of the city, where they would be just as much as home as they were on skid row. I felt that, as they were already in a more or less de-materialized state, instead of trying to rekindle the dying flame of safe and sane living by getting them jobs on docks or in hamburger joints, renting them rooms in flea bitten bird cages, we should make their monk-like reforms work for them. Everyone was patient with me and my ideas An idea is one thing, its fulfillment quite another. I needed land for my project and I had no money. I tried to work at different jobs and save what I needed or thought I needed. I”d get a few bucks together and we would suddenly need a new soup pot or the gas bill would have to be paid or the rent, or someone else would need dough to pay their rent. Well, after about a year of working and saving, I wound up with a bank book.

I wrote to Dorothy thinking she might have some ideas and she suggested I go to some Worker farm and try out and see if I was headed in the right direction. She sent the names of twelve or fifteen and especially suggested Marty's. I wrote him and he told me to come down as soon as I wanted. That was in February of 1951. It was snowing when I arrived, and Marty was working on Ruth Ann Heaney's new home. The first time we met, he reminded me of Burgess Meredith but after knowing him a while, he reminded me of Marty. We worked that spring and all that summer together. I thought about my farm but things didn't look too promising.

One June morning, Marty decided to go into town. He planned on leaving a t seven thirty and as Mass was at seven, I told him I would meet him at a certain crossroad about a mile from church. After Communion, I kept right on walking out of church and down the road in order to catch him. I was making my thanksgiving while walking and didn't notice a truck pull up behind me. A long lean face leaned out of the window and asked me if I could use a lift. I said I was only going a short distance but would accept the ride. We hadn't gone fifty feet before he knew I was interested in buying a farm and I knew he had one to sell. His name was Ben Fischer, a legendary figure in these parts, and he asked me to take a run up to his place some day. This I did and what I saw, I liked. It was a little on the huge side, almost four hundred acres with several nice fields, a good strong barn, deep cistern, three ponds, two big steel granaries and excellent fencing. He wanted ten thousand dollars and I thought surely it must be worth it.


Toward the end of July, I heard that Agriculture school under the G.I. bill had only a few days to run, at which time there would be no more openings. I had completely forgotten about my remaining schooling under the G.I. bill and I hurried down to the nearest V.A. Headquarter. The area was experiencing one of the worst floods and had you been anywhere near highway nineteen that day, you would have seen a tall lanky guy, holding his shoes over the water and propelling his skinny legs through the whirling muddy Missouri. They told me they were all filled up and as Marty's farm wasn't very large, my chances of getting in anywhere else were slim. I asked where anywhere else was and they told me to go to Montgomery City , about twenty miles away. So back across the muddy Missouri and three rides later, Montgomery City and sixty-give dollars a month for thirty months. That was July 25th, that night was the deadline, but that day I started to hope a little.


A few weeks passed and then one day my mother came for a visit. She stayed several days and we talked about my future and I asked for suggestions. “Why don't you ask Aunt Clara to help you?” This I did and within a few days I held a check for three thousand dollars in the morning sunlight, payable as soon as my head broke water. It wasn't long before my status changed from looker to buyer in the eyes of the populace. They knew I was thinking of buying the Fischer place and each day someone would tell me what a mistake that would be. I became confused and started looking for an out. I met Ben one afternoon, told him ten thousand was out of the reason. He kicked a stone and asked how much was in reason. I responded quickly, thinking this was that “way out”, and said eight thousand. He accepted.

This was August. Ben told me I'd better put in some wheat. I borrowed a sulky plow from Marty, his town horses and a horse trader down the road made it a trio by giving me a horse and two sets of harness. Plowing was slow but wonderful. At one corner of the field, I could look down into a valley for twenty-five miles. I spent a lot of time there. A few weeks passed and one day Ben held a public auction of all the farm machinery and livestock he had on the place. I had paid two thousand down on the farm and had a thousand dollars left for equipment. I knew one thing. I wanted some Jersey cows and Ben had some on the sale bill. I told him I would rather buy them outright and would give him three hundred dollars apiece. He laughed and said they weren't worth it but he'd take 200. I agreed, and bought six and a heifer and the remaining Jerseys' averaged $140 at the the sale. I felt like a big wheel bidding on sows and cows and plows. At one pen, I bought a registered Shrop ram and then bided my time until they got down into the yearling stuff. I asked a fellow what they were and he said females. I bought thirteen of them and then discovered I had thirteen castrated males. I was too proud to ask for a recount. I had a start though and with Marty's help plowed, disced and planted my twenty-three acres of wheat. One field had clover in it and I'd let Katy my yellow mare, the cows and little lambs graze the part I hadn't plowed up yet. This proved a tragic practice. Thinking two little lambs would skitter away from the oncoming horses, what with my yelling and their snorting, I found that lambs don't skitter and the horses trampled them into the dirt. I don't think I've every felt as miserable as I did then. They didn't let out a whimper. One died an hour or so later and the other hung on for a week. I lost some more from worms and marketed seven out of the thirteen. While discing that field, I had a bit more trouble. I bought a so-called field disc from a neighbor. It proved later to be nothing but a little go-devil used to disc between rows of corn. I had no seat for it so stood over the blades while bouncing over the field. I'd fly over every half a round and one time slipped in between the blades and horses, burying my leg underneath. Between digging down to my leg and keeping three horses pacified and under the maltreatment of horseflies, I managed to lift the thing off of myself. I must have sat there fifteen minutes shaking.


I had been visiting St. Louis and Msgr. Hellriegel's Holy Cross Parish on the big feasts and it was here that I met Fran. She had just returned from a Poor Clare Monastery, was working in the office of a mirror manufacturer. Either the mirrors were driving her crazy or she had a weak moment, at any rate, we became man and wife not many months after. Fran was born and raised on a farm, but she knew no more about it than I. We found our biggest problem is in organization. I still have the trouble, but not as seriously. There must have been a hundred different things to do on the place but some days Id just stand there scratching my head.


We try to pray in an organized way too. This has its problems. We say the Office, sing it during the slack seasons and our record is spotty. We have been able to dust ourselves off and try again up to now but the flesh is weak. We want to evolve a rule for married people. We've worked several out and though difficult to maintain, they always bring refreshment. We'd like to have a chapter of faults twice a week, prime on rising, terce and sext before and after breakfast, none before dinner, vespers before chores and compline before bed. Matins and lauds optional, lessons mandatory. We've tried to set aside a certain period each evening for study. Transformation in Christ, Divine Pity, Mysteries of Christianity. I murder the latter. We've tried to study encyclicals, insert a half hour meditation, read the Bible for fifteen minutes but most of the time, we end up unconscious on the bed, with the radio going. We know this, it is possible, but it takes will power and one must supply where the other fails. God has been very patient with us on this score. I hope His patience pays off.

After purchasing the farm, I heard of a plan whereby the govern refinances farms on a forty-year basis. (This is where Ammon stops reading.) I went and had a talk with the representative. Come back when you've had a year's experience, he said. I filed it and forgot about it. A year passed and once again I paid him a visit. This time he pointed out that my farm was a bad risk, being in red area and having little corn ground. He was sorry, but, I thanked him and didn't bother to file it this time. It must have been about a month later when a car pulled up into our yard. Three men got out, took off in different directions with tripods and things and after a thorough examination of the farm, I was told I could get a loan. They would take over the debt, all chattels, improve multa acres of pasture on a forty-year basis. At this point, they all piled back into the car and took off in a cloud of chalky dust. I felt like I could use a drink.


Just what God wants of us, we do not know for sure, nor does anyone. We've had men from skid row out here, some for long periods of time but we've seemingly contributed little toward the solving of their problems. Sometimes I get so wound up with problems at hand I get a long distance look in my eye. During these periods, I don't even get my rosary said. Father Louis always emphasized balance and plasticity. As long as we balance our everyday problems with quiet and prayer and as long as we remain plastic to God's wishes, I don't think we need fret over the future. At any rate, if we are fretting, we must be doing it between compline and prime.


In case anyone would care to visit us, we would be happy to have them. We've plenty of work to do, a pond to swim in, woods to walk in. The farm is ninety miles west of St. Louis, eight miles straight west of a little community called Big Springs, Missouri.

Jack Woltjen


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