Rewilding the Word #10
by Rick Ganz on June 30th, 2024
This past week, I went to the home of a man whom I had never met, except through the report of him in the words, and in the expressive face, of a friend who admires him. I was told that the man has been significantly, and irreversibly, disabled for five years by the breakdown of several essential systems in his body. The friend had asked me, “Could you come and visit with him? I know that you will know what to do.” (Words to this effect.) I said, “Of course I will come. When?” And so it was arranged. I went.  Read More
Notes from the Wayside - June 2024
by Tara Ludwig on June 13th, 2024
Wayside shrine in Carinthia, Austria The Ludwig family garden will not be appearing on the cover of Sunset magazine anytime soon.  My husband and I, both natives of asphalt-laden urban areas, did not seem to inherit the gene that enables one to create a neat, polished, and orderly garden.  Instead, our front yard is a mix of sprawling, unpruned rose bushes, random patches of wildflowers such as da...  Read More
Rewilding the Word #9
by Rick Ganz on May 29th, 2024
I want to recount a conversation that I had this week. He and I found ourselves, at one point in our conversation, reflecting on the relentless calamities happening inside a formerly distinguished Institution. We had been noticing too many evidences of its lostness, its progressive self-destruction under bleakly vague leadership. when people lose hope.  Read More
Notes from the Wayside - May 2024
by Tara Ludwig on May 9th, 2024
My husband, Matt, is a “go-go-go” type of guy. His German heritage has instilled in him a tireless work ethic, and he is eternally a busy bee: always puttering around the house, working on little projects, fixing things, and just generally getting stuff done. It is a Herculean task to get the man to sit down. As a couple we are a true example of the adage that “opposites attract” because my family, (all Italian), are experts in the art of lounging. I am constantly urging Matt to take it easy, rest a little, and leave things till later, but alas, relaxation is not in his repertoire.   Read More
Rewilding the Word #8
by Rick Ganz on April 25th, 2024
A dear and fifty-year friend of mine died in March, on the 14th day, on the birthday of Albert Einstein (1879-1955). The latter wrote wisely such words as: “Imagination is the highest form of research.” And “The only thing that interferes with my learning is my education.” And “If you want your children to be intelligent, read them fairy tales. If you want them to be more intelligent … read them more fairy tales."  Read More
Notes from the Wayside - April 2024
by Tara Ludwig on April 17th, 2024
Wayside shrine in Mertert, Luxembourg I must confess to having, like many folks, a secret favorite “guilty pleasure” TV show. Granted, it is a lowbrow show that contributes nothing whatsoever to my intellectual development, but I enjoy it for its sheer entertainment value, even though I would be mortified to ever publicly admit to being a fan (which, ironically, is exactly what I am about to do).T...  Read More
The Lenten Meditations 2024, Week 6
by Tara Ludwig on March 24th, 2024
Mary Magdalene on Christ’s Tomb (circa 1900) by Giuseppe CaliExhibited by the Malta Art Association. In this year’s Lenten Meditations, we have contemplated together many aspects of suffering:  what it is and isn’t, what we can do with it, what it calls out in us.  We are beginning to get a sense that, when we have suffered something profound, it inevitably changes us.  Suffering causes us to bec...  Read More
The Lenten Meditations 2024, Week 5
by Tara Ludwig on March 17th, 2024
The Descent into Hell (1568) by Jacopo TintorettoHangs in San Cassiano Church in Venice, Italy In Matthew 20:28 Jesus says, “the Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serve, and to give his life as a ransom for many.” When we hear that word “ransom”, I’m guessing most of us probably imagine something like a scene from a Hollywood movie, where a ransom of an outrageous sum of money is demand...  Read More
Rewilding the Word #7
by Rick Ganz on March 13th, 2024
There was a boy, a native of Alexandria, Egypt, who lost his eyesight at the age of 4. History would come to know him as Didymus the Blind (313-398 CE). But for a man who could not see, he was among the greatest Christian biblical scholars and theologians of his time. He worked in the 4th century, which very few Christian centuries since then can match for the intensity and depth and range of original Christian thinking...  Read More
The Lenten Meditations 2024, Week 4
by Tara Ludwig on March 9th, 2024
We have explored previously in the Lenten Meditations the idea that suffering, in itself, is not inherently good. And yet, remarkably, when a thing is suffered well, it often inspires goodness; not only in ourselves, but in those who bear witness to our suffering. In his book The Problem of Pain author C.S. Lewis writes...  Read More
The Lenten Meditations 2024, Week 3
by Tara Ludwig on March 2nd, 2024
Everyone knows by experience the frustration of being inconvenienced. An appointment is canceled at the last minute, the store doesn’t have the item we need, a home renovation takes longer than expected. Inconvenience is a part of life, and admittedly, not a fun one. We do not like intrusions into the smooth efficiency of our routine...  Read More
The Lenten Meditations 2024, Week 2
by Tara Ludwig on February 25th, 2024
In everyday conversation we often tend to use the words “pain” and “suffering” interchangeably. We may say, “My arthritis is causing me pain”, but just as likely we might also say, “I’ve been really suffering with my arthritis lately”. And we would mean much the same thing. In both instances, when we are talking about pain and suffering, we are attempting to express the inward reality that something is hurting us...  Read More