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Archive for September, 2007

Parent Day

September 29, 2007 Leave a comment

Today we had lots and LOTS of vistors!  It was “Parent Day” where immediate family is invited to spend the evening together for a tour, Mass, dinner and entertainment.  With 65 seminarians, we had a record number of people (about 300) from all over the world.  Everything went great!  Everyone worked together to prepare, plan, execute and clean-up (I even served wine).  We had some great entertainment, ranging from solos, poetry, skits (“Making Beans” & “Pick-Pocket”) and some music (including “Amore“).  –We’ve got a talented & blessed house!
SJV Parent Day - crowd SJV Parent Day - Making Beans SJV Parent Day - music

2 tests – Archangel Battle – tables

September 28, 2007 Leave a comment

MODERN PHILOSOPHY – (Fr Santos) — Quiz on Decartes.  3 essay questions took the whole hour: How was he successful at determining “self” as the “rock of certainty”?  How did he fail at proving “world” and “God” as “innate”?  How was “world” distinct from “self” and “God”?   — at least those are the questions I thought (through subjective perception and err) I answered.

ANCIENT PHILOSOPHY – (Fr Santos) — continued Plato’s Phaedo to explore personal, social & objective immortality.  Body vs soul.  4 Causes: material, efficient, formal & final.

ARTS & IDEAS – (Fr Vallee) — test on Classic Greek Culture.  Also turned in a 3 page Reflection paper on “Greek Hellenic Idealism vs. Hellenistic Reality.”

SOCCER TOURNAMENT — Soccer has become some big here that we have a 4 team tournament going on.  Today was game 2 of round 1.  It was called the “Battle of the Archangels” because one team is called St Raphael and the other ???  Today’s game was supposed to be last night, but there wasn’t enough light.  — today was too hot (1:30pm) 
SJV Soccer SJV Soccer SJV Soccer

Parent Day table setupTABLE SETUP — in preparation for Parent Day tomorrow, we set up the tables in the Refrectory for 300 people!  — wow 

VOCATION LINK UPDATE — Yesterday I had a record 35 hits on my Vocations link page (& 190 for my whole site), so I decided to add more than just Miami links.  Added some links for general vocation info, seminary listings and all the diocese of Florida with their vocation links.  I even found some profiles of some of my brother here.  — it only took me 4 month to add stuff in a half hour … procrastinator

pre-T house blessing

September 27, 2007 Leave a comment

Archbishop Favalora blessing the groundsToday, the Rector’s staff met with the Board of Trustees, who are mainly the bishops of Florida.  Just before lunch, we had all the Pre-Theology guys and bishops at the 2 new off-site housing locations (1 block away) to be blessed.  The picture I took of Rector Fr Michael and Archbishop Favalora blessing the grounds was located in the shared back yard of both duplexes.  There’s still some detail to take care of (like adding grass), but the new residences look great.

Bishop Estevez – name graces – volleyball fix

September 26, 2007 Leave a comment

MODERN PHILOSOPHY – (Fr Santos) — started John Locke’s “An Essay Concerning Human Understanding.”  Empiricism vs rationalism.

ANCIENT PHILOSOPHY – (Fr Santos) — continued Plato’s Phaedo with “knowledge as recollection” and “the indestructibility of the soul.”

ARTS & IDEAS – (Fr Vallee) — finished the Greek handout for our test on Friday.

WORKLIST — in “Sacristy,” I had bathrooms, so I finished pretty quick with time enough to help mop.  The tapistry of St Lawrence (hurricane damaged) was also being put up, so I took some pictures up close.
St John Vianney College Seminary - St Raphael Chapel sacristy St John Vianney College Seminary - St Raphael Chapel sacristy St John Vianney College Seminary - St Raphael Chapel sacristy St John Vianney College Seminary - St Raphael Chapel - St Lawrence tapistry St John Vianney College Seminary - St Raphael Chapel - St Lawrence tapistry

HOLY HOUR — with a small delegation of visitors from a Cuban priest and religious conference in Miami, we were blessed to have Bishop Estevez presiding over Benediction & Vespers.  He mentioned some words of wisdom from a formator in seminary that stood out for him.  He said we should NAME the graces we receive throughout the day in order to trace our journey with the Lord.  — that’s a great idea … like “Connect-the-dots” of grace … I should do that, but I probably won’t stick to it

VOLLEYBALL TONIGHT — I finally got my fix tonight from 9-10pm in the gym.  I hope we can have it more regularly (weekly at least).

CONNECT-the-DOTS — (since holy hour🙂  rain … benediction … air conditioning … Bishop’s blessing … good food … table fellowship … quiet study … volleyball … health & safety … refreshing shower … did I mention volleyball?   🙂

Matrix acolyte + Vietnamese food + choir tryouts

September 25, 2007 1 comment

Seminarian alter serverMASS – (Fr Joseph) — the homily story was the “2 brothers’ grain exchange,” but more importantly (to me), today was my first time serving as Acolyte.  I haven’t been an alter server at Mass since 6th grade 20 years ago … so I was nervous.  Since I didn’t have a cassock & surplice, one of my seminarian brother gave me an extra cassock (black robe) he had and I borrowed a surplice (white top) from another brother.

Matrix Neo dodging bulletsHere’s what I can remember (that I haven’t repressed): everything went well, until I presented Fr Joseph with the water & wineI forgot to take the tops off! … and had to fumble around on the alter to get them open (--I don’t know how my heart restarted).  If that’s not enough … after the Eucharistic prayer, when I tried (important distinction) to get up from kneeling, I forgot to pull up my cassock, slipped (repeatedly) and fell back like Neo dodging bullets in the Matrix.  I thought everyone saw me, but later found out few noticed.  —learning the hard way. 

OLD TESTAMENT – (Fr Michael) — our first test was 36 multiple choice questions.  I know I missed the 3 about names of specific Vatican documents (– didn’t see those coming).  Then we covered various Biblical translations and the history of our Canonical books of Scripture.

Vietnamese Food NightCULTURAL FOOD NIGHT — Today was “Vietnamese Food Night”  — with some Vietnamese carrot cake for dessert?

CHOIR TRYOUT — all new guys were required to tryout for “Escoela,” the choir that practices on Wednesday nights and sings at Sunday Mass and special events.  —la-la-lA-LA-LA   [I didn’t make it — found out Wed morning — ok by me]

TV — watched the season opener of “The Unit

John De Rosen – polish artist

September 24, 2007 3 comments

John De Rosen, polish mosiac muralistARTS & IDEAS – (Fr Vallee) — at the end of class, we went to the St Raphael Chapel to view the outdoor mosaic mural by John De Rosen, a polish artist.  His most famous works are at Grace Cathedral (with 8 murals) and the Shrine of the Immaculate Conception in Washington DC (with 12 murals).

Our mosaic is themed after the Second Vatican Council in the spirit of ecumenism with Peter (the first pope), surrounded by the 4 churches and includes the bishop coat of arms for Pope John XXIII, Pope Paul VI, and Archbishop Coleman Carroll (who built St John Vinney College Seminary here in Miami, FL, USA).  — beautiful!
“Vatican II Council” mosaic murel by John De Rosen “Vatican II Council” mosaic murel by John De Rosen “Vatican II Council” mosaic murel by John De Rosen “Vatican II Council” mosaic murel by John De Rosen “Vatican II Council” mosaic murel by John De Rosen “Vatican II Council” mosaic murel by John De Rosen “Vatican II Council” mosaic murel by John De Rosen “Vatican II Council” mosaic murel by John De Rosen “Vatican II Council” mosaic murel by John De Rosen

In froht of the mosaic are three porcelains by Rafael Consuegra that represent the 3 Archangels Gabriel, Michael and Raphael here @ St John Vianney College Seminary, Miami, FL
 “Archangel Gabriel” porcelain by Vincenzo Bianchini @ St John Vianney College Seminary, Miami, FL, USA “Archangel Michael” porcelain by Vincenzo Bianchini @ St John Vianney College Seminary, Miami, FL, USA “Archangel Raphael” porcelain by Vincenzo Bianchini @ St John Vianney College Seminary, Miami, FL, USA

TV — watched the season opener of “Heroes.”

silent retreat – fall in love

September 22, 2007 1 comment

St John Vianney College Seminary - Flat Palm areaToday finished our 24 hour “Day of Reflection” with a Vigil Mass at 4:30pm.  It was a “silent retreat” that helped us to “retreat” from our busy-ness and be “silent” to listen to what the Lord has to say.  Of all the 4 conferences, the line that stood out for me was a quote from the late Jesuit Superior General Fr Pedro Arrupe:

Nothing is more practical than finding God, that is, than falling in love in a quite absolute, final way. What you are in love with, what seizes your imagination, will affect everything. It will decide what will get you out of bed in the morning, what you will do with your evenings, how you spend your weekends, what you read, who you know, what breaks your heart, and what amazes you with joy and gratitude. Fall in love, stay in love and it will decide everything.

We must fall in love with Jesus Christ first … and that will decide everything else.

Last night’s rain storm filled our “Reflection Pond” enough for a beautiful picture of the entrance grounds.  I also spent some time reflecting in some beautiful outdoor areas around the main St Raphael Chapel.  (the pictures don’t do them justice)
St John Vianney College Seminary - Reflection Pool - from entrance St John Vianney College Seminary - Reflection Pool - facing entrance St John Vianney College Seminary - Palms area St John Vianney College Seminary - Palms area St John Vianney College Seminary - Pond w goldfish area St John Vianney College Seminary - Pond w goldfish area