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Back at Home

I’m back. And I appreciate the thoughts, prayers, and support from those who read my blog and knew nothing except that I was going out of town unexpectedly, and would not be posting any blogs for a few weeks. The suddenness of our leaving town was due to a medical emergency with my mother-in-law, who was in and out of the hospital – and back in again – in the time we were there with her. That trip led directly into another one that we [...]

By |June 9th, 2019|Columns, Family, Travel, Values|0 Comments

Tears and Prayers for Notre Dame

My first-ever trip abroad was with a tour group to Paris in 2005. We had a full and glorious itinerary, visiting the Louvre, the Eiffel Tower, Versailles, Monet’s Garden, Sacre Coeur, and other famous and not-so-famous-but-still-wonderful sites. Sadly, Notre Dame was not among them. It was on our original itinerary, but the day we left the States for Paris was the day Pope John Paul II died. In the following days and weeks, Catholic churches around the world – including Notre Dame, of course – [...]

By |April 20th, 2019|Columns, Faith, Holidays, Travel|0 Comments

Coming home

Note from Betty: Sometimes, as I'm writing my blog, I know what I want to say but the words just won't cooperate. That's what happened last week, and by the time I got the words right it was almost time for this week's blog, so I just waited till today to post it. My apologies to those who were wondering why there was no blog post last week! “Gee, but it’s great to be back home.” That’s the opening line of a Simon and Garfunkel song [...]

By |March 15th, 2019|Columns, Making a Difference, Travel, Uganda, Values|0 Comments

A cold reception and a warm welcome

I rarely catch colds – maybe once every few years or so. So naturally, I came down with one a week before we were scheduled go visit our new granddaughter. I blame my son for jinxing me. "Be sure you're getting enough Vitamin C," he said in a phone conversation a few weeks earlier. "You don't want to get sick right before you come to see the baby." What made him even think of this was the fact that his brother-in-law had been planning to visit [...]

By |March 1st, 2019|Columns, Family, Travel|0 Comments

Warm Hearts Melt Winter’s Chill

When my husband retired and we moved to Georgia – after 40 years in the Chicago area and 18 years in Minnesota, with a few other locations in between – we often said that we’d go back to visit family and friends up north, but never in the winter. That was before our son and daughter-in-law had a baby – our first grandchild – in the middle of January, in Minnesota. We were only joking, of course – well, half-joking – when we talked about [...]

By |February 22nd, 2019|Columns, Family, Travel, Values|0 Comments

Celebrating and saying prayers

“We’re going to be a little late getting there,” Richard said as we climbed into his car and left the hotel. It was Sunday morning, and we were on our way to 8:00 Mass at the Angal Parish church in the West Nile region of Uganda. I hate arriving late anywhere, especially places like church. It popped into my head briefly that perhaps we could sneak in quietly and sit, unnoticed, in a back pew, although I knew that wasn’t very likely. For one thing, [...]

A visit to the hospital

We were sitting in the office of the Executive Director of St. Luke’s Hospital in the Nebbe District of northern Uganda, along with the Medical Director and several other department heads. Our main reason for being there was that our organization, Pathways to Hope Africa, is working with a medical equipment company in the States that is donating medical supplies and equipment to the hospital, where it is desperately needed. St. Luke’s is in one of the poorest districts in the northwest Nile region of [...]

Lots to Celebrate

They didn’t walk across the stage individually to receive their diplomas – which is a good thing, since there were more than 9,000 of them. Instead, as each area of study was presented, the graduates came out as a group, singing and dancing in celebration of their accomplishments. The graduates were women – young women mostly, but also women of all different ages – who completed community education programs throughout Wakiso District, one of the largest geographical districts in Uganda.  To understand how significant this [...]

The week before Christmas

‘Twas the week before Christmas, and all through the night, I had fitfully slept on a long airline flight From Uganda to Amsterdam, and then to Atlanta Where I’d finally be home to await our own Santa. The couple beside me were speaking in Dutch, So we nodded a greeting, but didn’t say much. I knew none of their language, they knew little of mine. But we somehow communicated, and things worked out fine. At one point, the wife tried to turn on her light. [...]

By |December 29th, 2018|Columns, Holidays, Making a Difference, Travel, Uganda, Values|0 Comments

A long-distance lesson

“It could have been a lot worse,” we told ourselves. “At least nobody got hurt.” Well, except for the car, of course, but even that wasn’t nearly as bad as it might have been. I thought I should say that right up front, because if I started out with, “We got hit by a semi on our way to Chicago last week,” you might have gotten unduly alarmed. We had just crossed over into Indiana when an 18-wheeler next to us in the far left [...]

By |September 28th, 2018|Columns, Family, Travel|0 Comments