UBI CARITAS ET AMOR. DEUS IBI EST.
Friday, 31 December 2021
Thursday, 30 December 2021
Wednesday, 29 December 2021
The fish seem to be a dimwitted species unwilling or unable to evolve. They can't even punch their way out of a plastic bag. (Look out for environmentalists' comments).
Let's face it, when is the last time you've seen a fish driving a bus, or writing a book? Mammals, like humans for instance, can do both. Even chimpanzees have been taught to ride a tricycle, and dogs to herd sheep, and parrots to talk. But fish ... ???
I've done some research on your behalf. Did you know that the mangrove killifish, which lives in Florida and Mexico, can tolerate very salty water, and temperatures of up to 100* F.
It can also survive for about two months on land. So it's like going on holiday. It gets out of the sea, leave behind its swimming costume, and it takes a three-piece suit or the best dresses and goes on land for a few weeks. Bravo for the mangrove killifish. That's one small step for evolution. You'll have to wait for another million years before you see one driving your bus, or at the check-out counter of your supermarket.
The rest of the fish species are totally left behind in the evolutionary scale.
The anchovy, for instance, as well as the sardine, the herring, the pilchard and the tuna, have a tendency to get into tins and cans and wait for you to buy them at the supermarket. You may know of other stupid fish with similar self-destructive habits. Some cover themselves with tomato sauce or olive oil to camouflage their taste.
You'll note I do not mention the dolphin in this article. Strictly speaking it is not a fish but a mammal that swims. Being a mammal it is a very enterprising creature which has benefited enormously from the tourist trade by enticing humans to swim with them. Unlike the shark, which being a stupid fish, has ruined its chances of similar fame and success by taking a bite out of any tourist too near to hand ... or mouth!
Many people have a lifetime ambition to swim with dolphins. I have always wished to do so but could not afford it. So I swam with sardines instead. They all swam away and left me. Which proves the point of their stupidity.
There are all other shapes and sizes of marine creatures which I suppose we can classify loosely as fish ... lobsters for example, prawns, oysters, clams, shellfish and octopusses or octopussies or whatever. They are all considered as fish. You do not for instance find them at the butcher's or the greengrocer's or the hardware store!
The octopus is a delicacy in many countries. It has eight legs and very difficult to catch because it runs faster than any human on two legs. This accounts for why it is so expensive in restaurants and why you have never seen an octopus run in the Olympics. When it is occasionally caught its a struggle to put it in a boiling pan of water. As you put one leg in another comes out, and often it uses its spare legs to turn off the heat under the boiling pan.
Perhaps man can learn to evolve and grow more legs. That way we can run faster and catch not only the octopus but other fast creatures like the cheetah or the ostrich.
Can you imagine if you had an extra leg or arm? I'd like an arm out of the front of my chest. I could hide it under my shirt and get it out to wave at the other passengers on the bus. Or perhaps an extra mouth on top of my head. I could put a sandwich under my hat and eat whilst driving.
Oh the possibilities ... How about you? How would you like to evolve?
Tuesday, 28 December 2021
I don't see anything wrong with that. I often buy myself a few cans of Guinness regardless of what I'm celebrating.
A friend of mine said that for Christmas as a personal present she had a tattoo done in a very private place.
I feigned interest and asked her what it was. A bird perhaps? Or a flower? A heart?
"No ..." she said, "it is an inscription in a foreign language! I don't know what it says but it looks nice."
I thought it was rather odd, or silly, to have an inscription tattooed and you don't know what it means.
"You're good at languages," she said, "perhaps you could translate it for me." And before I could say anything she revealed her shapely body and showed me the inscription.
It took me quite a time to decipher it. I did not know what it said. So I scribbled every bit of the inscription on a piece of paper as accurately as I could. Took me some time in order to be very accurate.
She said she saw the inscription in the tattooist catalogue and liked it.
I checked with a colleague what the inscription means and it is "Do Not Machine Wash - Dry Clean Only".
Do you think I should tell her? Or should I go back and check the tattoo inscription again in case I got it wrong first time? This time I'll copy it more korrectly ... correctly.
Monday, 27 December 2021
One tradition in our family is that every Christmas, after our meal, we play charades or mimes. One of us starts, usually me, and mimes either the title of a book, a film or a song and the rest of the family have to guess which book, film or song it is.
To make it easy, every year it is the same mimes. I start with miming the book "Great Expectations" by Charles Dickens, followed by "A Christmas Carol"; and the family have to guess. They have to pretend not to know it at first and they say things like Star Trek, I left my heart in San Francisco, or Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer. Then they guess correctly.
Other mimes in our annual repertoire are The Sound of Music, Jingle Bells and Gone With The Wind.
It is always the same mimes. And its great fun. You should try it.
Sunday, 26 December 2021
Friday, 24 December 2021
Wishing A Blessed Christmas
to all our friends.
Thank you for your support and encouragement.
Thursday, 23 December 2021
Wednesday, 22 December 2021
Tuesday, 21 December 2021
When four of Santa's elves got sick, the trainee elves did not produce toys as fast as the regular ones, and Santa began to feel the Pre-Christmas pressure.
Then Mrs. Claus told Santa her Mother was coming to visit, which stressed Santa even more.
When he went to harness the reindeer, he found that three of them were about to give birth and two others had jumped the fence and were out, Heaven knows where.
Then when he began to load the
sleigh, one of the floorboards cracked, the toy bag fell to the ground and all the toys were scattered.
Frustrated, Santa went in the house for a cup of apple cider and a shot of rum. When he went to the cupboard, he discovered the elves had drunk all the cider and hidden the liquor
In his frustration, he
accidentally dropped the cider jug, and it broke into hundreds of little glass
pieces all over the kitchen floor. He went to get the broom and found the mice
had eaten all the straw off the end of the broom.
Just then the doorbell rang, and an irritated Santa marched to the door, yanked it open, and there stood a little angel with a great big Christmas tree.
The angel said very cheerfully, 'Merry Christmas, Santa. Isn't this a lovely day? I have a beautiful tree for you. Where would you like me to stick it?'
And so began the tradition of the little angel on top of the Christmas tree.
On a totally separate incident ... ... ...
bought a big Christmas tree from the garden centre the other day. As he helped
me tie it on top of the car the assistant said, "Are you going to
put it up yourself?"
"No; I'll put it up in the living room!" I replied growling at him.
Monday, 20 December 2021
Silent night, holy night!
All is calm, all is bright.
Round yon Virgin, Mother and Child.
Holy infant so tender and mild,
Sleep in heavenly peace,
Sleep in heavenly peace
Silent night, holy night!
Shepherds quake at the sight.
Glories stream from heaven afar
Heavenly hosts sing Alleluia,
Christ the Saviour is born!
Christ the Saviour is born
All is calm, all is bright.
Round yon Virgin, Mother and Child.
Holy infant so tender and mild,
Sleep in heavenly peace,
Sleep in heavenly peace
Sunday, 19 December 2021
Saturday, 18 December 2021
Friday, 17 December 2021
The priest approached the lectern and said:
“I am very pleased to see so many of you gathered here today to celebrate 50 years of service which you, and this hospital, have given to the community.
“I would like, if I may, to read you three passages from the Bible. The first is from Luke Chapter 4 Verse 40.
“After sunset all who had friends who were sick with various diseases brought them to Jesus; He placed His hands on everyone of them and healed them all.
“This reading is from Matthew Chapter 8 Verses 2 and 3.
“Then a man suffering from a dreaded skin-disease came to Him, knelt down before Him, and said, ‘Sir, if you want to, you can make me clean’”. Jesus stretched out His hand and touched him. “I do want to,” He answered. “Be clean!” At once the man was healed of his disease.
“And finally I like to read from Mark Chapter 7 Verses 32 to 35.
“Some people brought Him a man who was deaf and could hardly speak, and they begged Jesus to place His hands on him. So Jesus took him off alone, away from the crowd, put His fingers in the man’s ears, spat, and touched the man’s tongue. Then Jesus looked up to Heaven, gave a deep groan, and said to the man, ‘Ephphatha’, which means, ‘Open up’. At once the man was able to hear, and his speech impediment was removed, and he began to talk without any trouble.”
Father Ignatius paused for a few seconds and looked at the congregation.
“You will remember” he said, “that the woman who followed Jesus on the way to Jairus’ house only had to touch His cloak and she was healed.
“A few verses further on, we read that when news came that Jairus’ daughter was dead; Jesus walked all the way to the house and there He performed His miracle and raised the little girl.
“Have you noticed, I wonder, something common in all these stories we have read? They are written by different people; Luke, Matthew and Mark, yet they all record something in common. What is it?”
Father Ignatius paused yet again to allow the congregation to think.
“In all passages we read that Jesus touched people to heal them,” he continued.
“Jesus placed His hands on the sick. He touched them, and they were healed.
“Now we know that Jesus was, and He is, all powerful. He could have clicked His fingers, or even thought about it, and the sick person would have been healed, if He wanted to.
“But He didn’t do that. He stopped and touched them instead. And they were healed.
“He really didn’t have to walk all the way to Jairus’ house. He could have said ‘Talitha, kaum. Little girl, I tell you to get up!’ from the very place He was standing and she would have been raised from the dead.
“But He did not do that. He walked all the way there and raised her up in the presence of her parents.
“And what we learn in all these stories is that Jesus really cared about people. He sympathized with them. He shared their pain and their worries and their fears and had compassion for them.
“He stopped and took time to speak to them. To touch them and to be with them on a one-to-one basis.
“He didn’t just raise His hands and a multitude of them were healed at once. He treated them as individuals and loved each one of them as individuals. They were important to Him and He made them feel worthy of His care and attention
“And that’s what I would like to remind you dear friends.”
Father Ignatius stopped for a few moments yet again.
“Most of you gathered here are practicing in the medical profession. And I do know that you tend to get very busy … I’ve been here visiting many times and seen you work very hard dealing with several emergencies at once.
“And being busy … it is possible that sometimes you may deal with those in your care as just another patient, another case in the long list of cases that come your way.
“Please remember that the person lying there in the hospital bed, or waiting for medical tests, is a human being with fears, worries and natural foreboding of what is to come.
“If you can, spare a minute or two treating that person as an individual … just like Jesus did all those years ago … and still does today.
“And this thought applies to the rest of us as well … those not in the medical professions. Counsellors, lawyers, teachers … and priests too.
“Oh yes … I’ve known many priests too busy rushing from one Ecumenical Meeting to another to spend time with their parishioners … I suppose I’m guilty of this sin too … may the Lord forgive me.
“Whatever our profession … medical or otherwise … let us remember to treat those that God has placed in our way with love, care and compassion; just as Jesus taught us.
“No matter how busy we might be; let us never switch off our kindness dispenser!”
Thursday, 16 December 2021
I tell you this, I ceased to believe in Father Christmas, or Santa, years ago. As a child I asked for a live unicorn as a present. I didn't get it. I was told Santa could not bring him down the chimney. So I ceased to believe.
Until the other day. I got home from work late and as I drove into our drive I saw Santa leaving our house in a hurry from the back door. He jumped over a fence and into his car which drove off at speed. No doubt he's delivering our presents early this year!
I imagined lying under a tree as she said, then a dog came and relieved itself!
You know those contraptions they point at you to check your temperature? I went to the supermarket and the assistant pointed it at me. It must have messed up my brain. I went in the shop for some groceries and got out with wines and chocolates.
Just a thought ... what if you went to church and the priest pointed the instrument at you. And he could tell all your sins. Would you go to church again?
But God can see all your sins. He does not need an instrument for that. Think about it!
Anyway ... not much else to say for the moment. So as I lean back on my chair and read what's on my computer monitor one more time ...
All I have to say is ... ... ... ... ...
Wednesday, 15 December 2021
FOR YOUR REVIEWS ON
This is such an excellent written book, that keeps you literally on edge till the very end. I read it through... could not put it down! WOW. - Mariette
When Father Ignatius and Father Donald are called away to a Conference at a monastery little did they know they would end up as suspects in the murder of a monk. Murder in the Monastery is a murder mystery with a unique twist. Even though the story is a who-dun-it there are several passages throughout the story that Father Ignatius speaks to others about forgiveness. I intend on reading more by this new author and I recommend this inspirational story to others.- Romaine Heart
Victor using his created character, Father Ignatius, has completed a very good example, in short stories, of a man of God interested in people. I smiled as I read the stories. It could have been the small office or churches my dad pastored. Victor's insight into the problems encountered by any ministers of the Gospel, yeah, including priests. As I read I actually remember several short stories that were nearly word for word of problems and the Priest's answers were as if my dad had advised. I recommend this book very highly. As I write this review I am smiling remembering my dad the pastor of a very fundamental Protestant church. He would have gotten a kick out of me comparing him to an educated Catholic Priest; my dad was self taught, very successful, from a very poor family and a formal education of the 3rd grade. He had to quit school to be a full time farm hand. Victor's Father Ignatius was also from a poor family. Anyway, no matter your situation, you will enjoy Father Ignatius. - Kindle Customer
If you haven't already met the lovable and caring Fr. Ignatius, here is your chance! Take Care of My Sheep is a collection of thoughtful and inspiring stories by author Victor S E Moubarak, stories that star Fr. Ignatius and the varied experiences he encounters that cry out for his Christian knowledge and gentle demeanour. When I'm feeling down, I pick this book up and immerse myself in one of the stories - they never grow old! ~Martha Orlando, author of A Trip, a Tryst and a Terror, Children in the Garden, The Moment of Truth, Revenge!, Redemption, and Revelation, all available on Amazon
Victor Moubarak has provided us with a collection of short stories that are simply heartwarming. I enthusiastically second Martha Orlando's positive review!- Chris Lally
This is a very well written 'Who Done It'. I thoroughly enjoyed the plot, and many original lines. The one I remember most was concerning a conversation in which the old saying "If someone yells in a vacuum can it be heard?" You have to appreciate the wit of the author and also the surprise ending. It is a very enjoyable read and I definitely would recommend the author. Yep, tis a fun read. - Jack Darnell
A man of many talents, Victor, entertains us with a "Who Don It" in this offering! What I liked MOST about the story---the reminder to not jump to judgement based upon circumstances! Victor tells a story with a touch of tongue in cheek--always--and adds a lesson in morality and faith while weaving an intriguing tale of murder and mystery. The faithful stand by Father Ignatius, but most fall away and even call for heads to roll--reminiscent of the last days of Christ. A talented writer, Victor, has once again used the infamous Father Ignatius to keep us on the edge of our seats--while at the same time gently reminding us of important life lessons. A Great Read!- LJC
I so much love this book! I am still reading it, have not finished, but love how the story combines adventure, faith, and suspense. The author is very talented and has crafted a wonderful story. My highest recommendation!- Patrick Kearns
I have read Victor Moubarak and am impressed with his ability to teach me about the Catholic Church and it's stands and beliefs. He does not shy away from the controversial and that is important for me. I will probably never be a Roman Catholic Church 'follower' but it is refreshing to read, and learn things I did not know. One of my best friends converted from Baptist to become a Catholic, we have had many discussions. Now after following Victor and reading his books I feel more informed. I recommend the book as a very good fiction novel, very entertaining, you cannot go wrong giving this book a read. - Kindle Customer
I really enjoyed following my favorite priest, Fr. Ignatius, as he navigates his way through a tough challenge. Celibacy and the priesthood are tough subjects, yet the author addresses it with such grace and insight. Priests are people, just like any of us, with the same feelings and inner conflicts. This book just made me love and respect the character of Fr. Ignatius more than I already did...which was a lot!- Ceil Ryan
Of all Moubarak's Father Ignatius stories, this one most definitely is his most poignant. Torn between his priestly vows and the reemergence of a former love, Fr. Ignatius is faced with a deep and life-changing decision. You do not want to miss this one! - Martha Orlando, author of A Trip, a Tryst and a Terror, Children in the Garden, Moment of Truth, Revenge!, Redemption, and Revelation, all available on Amazon
but were embarrassed to ask. :)
As ever, the author's narrative flows easily, and provides answers to 'those' niggling questions. Thank you! - Myra G.
Especially nowadays where so many people tend to stray away from God, this is a very good book for bringing them back into the fold.- Mariette
Thank you everyone who has reviewed my books on AMAZON. Too many to mention here. I am really humbled and grateful for your kindness. God bless you.
Tuesday, 14 December 2021
I don't know if you ever sent love letters. And whether, if you did, did you keep copies of the letters you sent to your sweetheart? Did you have access to a photocopier or printer, or did you use carbon paper which people used years ago to make copies of letters and documents?
Anyway, years ago I kept carbon paper copies of the hand-written letters I sent to my various girl-friends. I'd forgotten about them, but I found them in an old shoebox the other day when I was looking for a box big enough to bury our hamster in. As it happens, he was not dead. By the time I put him in the box he opened his eyes and twitched. Apparently he was a little lethargic because he saw an episode of Downton Abbey on TV. Anyway, he was now better and saved from a premature burial.
Back to the letters. They were a bit faded but you could still read some of the words faintly. Here are a few of them.
This letter was written to Helena to tell her that I wanted to break up our relationship.
This is the most difficult letter I have had to write. So let me make it easy and let you work out what I want to say.
This letter is to Erica. For some unknown reason she broke up with me.
I cannot understand why you have stopped contacting me and do not answer my phone calls. I have said a million times that I am sorry to have dropped the anvil on your foot. I was practicing at being the strongest man and could hold it no longer when you tickled me.
I am heartbroken at our breakup; although I would guess you are toe-broken as a result.
I hope your toe gets better soon. Does it hurt?
She never answered that letter and I did not see her again. She emigrated to Australia soon afterwards.
This letter was written to Marjorie.
I am so saddened and in despair at the lack of seeing you and being with you. I write once more whilst on my bended knees to ask for your forgiveness.
I am so so sorry that whilst massaging your dog my wristwatch got caught in his hair and he jolted and bit your nose. How was I to know he'd be so frisky. And to be fair, you were holding him rather close to your face at the time. So in my estimation, the blame should be shared equally between us for the unfortunate accident which led to you going to hospital to have some stitches in your nose. I hope it heals up soon and your nose would be as beautiful and as kissable as ever it was. Do not believe the doctor about the scars that will be there as a result. What do doctors know anyway?
I am sorry too about the various injections you had in your bottom at the hospital to prevent any possible infections. Life is full of surprises. We never know when we'll be showing our backside to complete strangers.
How was I to know you would get an adverse reaction to the injection? You can hardly hold me responsible for that.
Oh ... and about the door ... I did not know you were standing behind the door when I opened it. So fortunate we were at the hospital at the time and you got treated in the Emergency Room. Hope your eye is better soon.
Despite the pain we have shared together, and my broken wristwatch strap, I sincerely hope we can get back together again.
How is Fifi your dog?
Love and kisses,
She did not reply to the letter although we had several correspondences from her lawyers.
I also had a girl-friend called Michelle. She was French. This is what I wrote.
Mon petit choux Michelle.
You are so beautiful Michelle ma belle. These are words that go together well. I love you I love you I love you.
Michelle ma belle. Sont des mots qui vont tres bien ensemble. Tres bien ensemble.
I would like to serenade you like Maurice Chevalier, like Charles Aznavour, like Sacha Distel ... like Edith Piaf. These words by The Beatles were written for you, ma belle.
I am so very sorry that when we were in lovely Paris together I accidentally tripped you up and you fell in the river. I am also sorry that I did not jump in to help you out because the water was too cold.
You must have thought I was insane at the time; although strictly speaking it was you who was in Seine at the time.
I'm also sorry at this puny joke I made as Claude jumped in and got you out of the water.
How is Claude these days? I hope you two are happy together. I shall always miss you.
Claude was a passer-by who jumped in the river and got Michelle out. They are now married and have three children.
Monday, 13 December 2021
This leaves me both perplexed and somewhat vindicated; because for the past few years I have not been sending any Christmas or other greeting cards to anyone. My reasons had nothing to do with the hot air generated by the global warming debate, but more because I am mean by nature and resented having to spend so much on cards which are thrown in the re-cycling bin within days.
For a period I had considered sending people cards which I had received from family and friends in previous years, thus saving me having to buy new ones. But then the cost of postage went through the roof and I discovered another opportunity to save more money.
So I stopped sending cards altogether and decided on one group e-mail sent to everyone on my mailing list saving me the time and effort to type different greeting messages to everyone.
That's efficiency as well as preserving the planet for a few more years or so.
Oh ... another thing ... the money saved is grudgingly given to charity!
Sunday, 12 December 2021
This Christmas we need to focus on the greatest reality there is - that God loves us so much that He gave us His only Son to free us from our sins!
We need to be grateful for His love and respond to His love; and the best way to do that is by surrendering our life completely to Him, as He has surrendered Himself completely to us. How do we do this - by putting Him first in our daily lives? This means that we build our day around Him. We need to give Him quality time in our prayer life.
meditate on His birth and see Mary holding her divine Child in her arms
we can think of her saying, "Would you like to hold Him?" Then she hands
Jesus to you and you get to hold the God of the universe in your arms.
But we do not just stop
there – we realise EVERY DAY we can hold Jesus in our arms when we
receive Him in the Eucharist! To believe that Jesus, who is God, and who
the Universe cannot even begin to contain, became a little baby for us
and continues this humility in the Eucharist is amazing - What a gift He
has given to us! How very blessed we are!
I also realize and appreciate that there are some who think Christmas is a hard time. You may be experiencing loneliness or illness, or you may be in sorrow because you have lost someone dear. You need to know that you are never alone! Jesus became one of us so that He could be near us! There is never a time when you need to feel that no one cares or that you have to go through your struggles alone - YOU ARE LOVED! This is what Christmas is about, and this needs to be our hope that brings us through the darkness.
Remember that no matter how dark the darkness is - it can never conquer the Light! Try this - go into a dark room and light a match or candle and watch just how the darkness flees from the power of the light. Jesus is that Light and He is inside of YOU! That is so true. Cling to this Truth, and know His power!
This Christmas let us pray for each other and accept the love of the Christ Child, and of Our Father who gave Him to us, our best Christmas present. Mary and Joseph, we thank you for the part you played in bringing Jesus to our world.