Friday, June 29, 2018


Hi There !

So, I really hope

it is in fact

"high" there

where you are.

It is not so here where I am.

It is "low" here, very low.

I so want to write

for you of things like

cosmic energy, 

near and dear companionship

in The Spirit,

everyday contemplative living,

and lots more.

Can't just now.

I'm down.

My heart ( "cor")

has been ("dist")

as in

"dis - cour -aged."

Relational failures -

big time and bad.


No blame game.

I can only speak

for myself,


my ineptitude,

my mis-reads,

my mis-steps.

Love is union,

and for me lately love

has failed into separation.

Union left town,

went south,

far and fast.

What hurts so much

is to be blocked,

by myself and by others,

denied an opening

to pour forth

God's love

freely and fully

 so that it transports

 to transcendence.

 Rather, it's been

the incarnation

of love aborted

 and union lost.

 Heart blockage is

so dangerous and painful.

Look, honestly I don't mean this

as an invitation to a Pity Party.

We will get to cosmic energy,

near and dear companionship

in The Spirit,

everyday contemplative living,

and lots more, and that soon.

First, though, the imperative

for me, and for you

in your own time and way

of discouragement,

is to get Heart Healthy.

How do I/we do that?

How deal with the devil of


whatever the cause:

be that relational, vocational,

economic, your air conditioner

takes a vacation on a 95 degree day,

health issues upend everything?

How be, and what to do,

when something

frustrates our oneness,

our union with God, be that

God present in our relationship

with one of his children, be that

God present in our relationship

with some part of his good creation?

Whatever the cause and context,

it throws us for a loop.

In plain English,

how deal with discouragement?

The best response I know and

 am employing right now is:

    - admit it

    - suffer the pain

    - allow for mourning

    - refuse furry

    - as a particular love union

      is denied, embrace all the other

      particular love embraces

      open, healthy, fresh, good

      that welcome you -

      family and friends, babies and puppy dogs,

      tulips, Giotto's frescoes , a walk in the woods,

     a meal shared, a child happy to have you

     as a Big Brother/Sister, restoring a 1930 Model T,

    mentoring a young person from the inner city,

    and endlessly more if only

    we keep looking through our tears

     to see the Love Unions open to us

   - realize that all Reality is not wrapped up in

      just one particular love union denied

    - in simple, plain, pure prayer

       "Cast your care upon the Lord."

             ( Psalm 55:22 )


     - "There is a Wideness to God's Love"

                      for sure.

    - in fact, there are no limits,

      no denial of union from

      The Love Who Is God.

      The Love Union of God is oceanic

      and it is present in all sorts of

      people, projects, possibilities,

      places and objects.

  -  when discouraged, sink into the ocean

      of God's Love so universally present.

    - We go deep, or we drown where we are.


"Discouragement focuses on

'what is not,' and completely misses

the far greater reality of  'what is'."

     (  Craig D. Lounsbrough )

Hey, thanks for letting me be

honest and open with you

and go through this here.

Yes, it's so good

"to embrace all

the other particular love unions -

open, healthy, fresh, good...

that welcome you,"

and not get stuck in 

'what is not' and miss

the far greater reality of

'what is '.

When the devil of discouragement

tries to steal and still to death our hearts

when love union is denied one way or another,

stay open, go deep, swim free in that ocean of

presence that is the Love Who Is God.

Please do consider the


that follow when either discouraged,

or supporting another who is.

They provide an abundance of

clarity, comfort, direction and wisdom.


We are blessed to be joined lately

by many new to our weekly sharing


"frankly speaking" is posted Fridays

online and is available  at

and can be bookmarked

for easy access.

It is also available

for automatic delivery by email

each Saturday.

Please see the signup up

for that at the top right of

of the online version

for that option.

Past posting are available from the

Blog Archive

located at the bottom of the right column

of the online version.

Holding one and all gratefully in

God's Dear Love,

A Refreshed and Renewed,

    John Frank


            Meditation Markers

- When written in Chinese the word "crisis"

  is composed  of two characters -

  one represents danger

  and the other opportunity.

                         John F. Kennedy

- If the wind will not serve,

  take to the oars.

                       Latin Proverb

- What the caterpillar calls

   the end of the world,

   the master calls a butterfly.

                       Richard Bach

- If one dream should fall and

  break into a thousand pieces,

  never be afraid to pick

  one of those pieces up

   and begin anew.


- Fall seven times.

  Stand up eight.

              Japanese Proverb

- Weeping may endure

   for a night,

   but joy cometh

   in the morning.

                        Psalm 30:5

- It's just that in the Deep South,

   women learn at an early age

   that when the world

   is falling apart around you,

   it's time to take down the drapes

   and make a new dress.

          Karen Marie Moning

- I survived because the fire in me

  burned brighter than

  the fire around me.

                    Author Unknown

- We must endure pain

   and burn it as fuel

   for our journey.

                    Kenji Miyazawa

- God is my Shepherd!

  I don't need a thing.

  You have bedded me down

   in lush meadows,

   you find me quiet pools

   to drink from.

   True to your word,

   you let me catch my breath

   and send me in

   the right direction.

   Even when the way

   goes through Death Valley,

   I am not afraid

   when you walk at my side.

   Your trusty shepherd's crook

   makes me feel secure.

   You serve me a six course dinner

   right in front of my enemies

   You revive my dropping head;

   my cup brims with blessing.

   Your beauty and love chase after me

   every day of my life.

   I'm back home in the house of God

   for the rest of my life.

                Psalm 23

            ( The Message )





Friday, June 22, 2018


Hi There !

So, Sunday there I was in church.

Nothing particularly special

about that?

But there was.

I had a revelation -

right there in church -

a for real revelation.

To be honest about it,

I drifted a bit

during the sermon.

No, I wasn't preaching!!

Drift I did, though.

That's when it happened.

The stained glass windows,

those narrow,


floor to ceiling panels,

got a hold of me,

drew me in.

Windows of wonder.

All sorts and sizes

of colored bits

happy to be together

and showing so.

     The sun

over spreading them,


a gentle intensity

artfully caressing,


 a radiant response,

   penetrating to

fusion and perfusion,

  birthing brilliant


A tone poem in color -

silent sight speaking

mystery and majesty.


I almost missed the collection.

Musing and meditating

      on Sunday's


   and its revelation,

    I delight to be the

   unique bit of color

        that  I am,

    to be in company

 with such a plenitude

    of varied others,

each of us singular in

coloration, tone and hue,

 all of us yielding to




    intensifying us to

    shared  brilliance.

Think I'll call

the Pope,


Emmanuel Macron,

Franklin Graham,

The Saudi Crown Prince,

Donald Trump,

and my barber, Harry,

and tell them all about

      LIGHT ART.

Sure hope they'll pick up on it.

It's a Revelation that can make

all the difference in the world.

That goes for us, too.

So, how about we all take some

time, quiet, reflection, and prayer

this coming week for our own

           LIGHT ART.

Prompts and helps follow in our

        Meditation Markers.


We are blessed with new participation

                    here at

            "frankly speaking"

                from Algeria.

                 Welcome !

      "God bless us, every one!"

         Holding each and all

         In God's Dear Love,

               John Frank



Please draw from the plenitude

             of insights

            "sights into"

            little "peeks"


     the mystery and majesty







                                   that follow.

See what they say,

hopefully sing,

to your soul.

Let's muse and meditate,

 ponder and pray

our way through

the next week,

daily drawing

from what is offered here.



The ancient Greeks counseled

  "To thine own self be true."

              Am I?

    Have I embraced my

           True Self?

       Do I delight to be

      the unique me that 

              I am,

           this body,

           this spirit,

           this personality,

           this temperament,

           these talents,

           this dear, precious

             "bit  of color"

               created for

             the brilliance


           LIGHT ART



      How about

  "Just be yourself

and forget all the stuff

you read in 'GQ' magazine"

                     (Chris Pratt)

  or Vogue, or online,or...



Do I try to tailor

my clothes, manner,

activities, body, spirit,

life values and style 

  -   my very self  -

    in some sort of

      "make over"

to please, to play up,

      to position



The mystic scholar,

John Duns Scotus

shared that each

individual being is a






delighting in us.

   Can I join

God's delight in me?

Yes, there are

flaws and faults in me.

Some I inherited from

my earth community

in its slippage

at times

into chaos.

Some from my own slippage

into unrealness.

Yet, they are not my essence,

        they are not the



                  colored bit

                           of potential



wants to shine through

       unto brilliance.


Allowing for the shading of

     time and occurrence,

what is God's favorite way

  of shinning through me?

What ray of the Divine Intensity

    radiates right through me?


There are so many other

     bits of color

in the composition of life,

      each unique in 

coloration, tone and hue  -

     in orientation to

understandings, gender,

spirituality, politics, life styles.

      Am I free enough

       to be delighted

      by the plenitude

     and blend right in.



Using a different metaphor,

the Sufi Mystic, Hafiz shares:

"I am the hole on the flute

that God's breath flows through."


A variation on our theme

comes from the Sufi Mystic,


"Everyone has been made

for some particular work,

and the desire for that work

has been put in in every heart."


"That which God said

  to the rose

  and caused it to laugh

  in full-blown beauty,

  He said to my heart and

  made it a hundred times

  more beautiful."



"Forget not that the earth delights

  to feel your bare feet and

  the wind longs to play with your hair."



"Art enables us to find ourselves

and lose ourselves at the same time."

                               Thomas Merton


"Creativity takes courage."



"Every child is born an artist.

The problem is how

to remain an artist

once we grow up."



"Creativity is contagious.

 Pass it on."



"Be yourself: everyone else

 is already taken."

                                Oscar Wilde


"Your time is limited.

 Don't waste it

 living someone else's life."

                                 Steve Jobs


"Find out who you are

 and do it on purpose."

                                 Dolly Parton


"Always be a first-rate version of yourself

 and not a second-rate version

 of someone else."

                                  Judy Garland


"Own who you are."



"We are ourselves creations.

We are meant to continue creativity

by being creative ourselves.

This is the God-force

extending itself through us."

                                   Julia Cameron


"So God created humankind in his image..."

                                    Genesis 1; 27

               - Have I noticed?

               - God has designs on me, his!!

               - How about that??


"The soul has been given its own ears

 to hear things the mind does not understand."



"What matters is how quickly you do

  what your soul directs."



"If a man is to be alive,

 he must be all alive,

 body, soul, mind, heart, spirit."

                                      Thomas Merton


"God will use you to accomplish great things

 on the condition that you believe much more

 in his love than in your weakness."

                                      Mother Theresa


" Our own life has to be our message."

                                      Thich Nhat Hahn


"With passion pray.

With passion make love.

With passion eat and drink

and dance and play.

Why look like a dead fish

in the ocean of God?"



"You and your purpose in life

  are the same thing.

  Your purpose is to be you."

                                     George Alexion


From the Quakers:



Welcome to those new to

   "frankly speaking."

- It is posted online each Friday

  and can be accessed at

  and can be bookmarked for easy access.

- It is delivered weekly and automatically

   by email each Saturday.

   Sign Up is at the top right

   of the online version.

- Past Postings are available from

  Blog Archive. It is at the bottom right

  of the online version.

                   Thank You !





Friday, June 15, 2018


               This time last week

               it seemed this posting

               would be delayed a day.

               Happily, here we go

               right on time!

Hi There !

So, come on.

Let's count 'em up,

because they sure do


Let's count up all those


of this world who have made

all the difference in the world

to us in our spiritual lives.

Honestly, right here, right now,



 our for real "patron" saints,

the whole ones, the holy ones,

who have been our spiritual patrons,

our spiritual benefactors,

those who have endowed us so richly

by their lived example and sharing.

As a prompt, please permit me to share

a few examples from my own long  


of  my patron saints and benefactors.


               WHO REALLY


 My Mother

-She didn't talk it, she walked it.

- She was the real deal,

  really and truly

  rooted, centered in

"The Love Who Is God."

- So centered, she was energized

  to raise eight children and

  one husband.

- Steadiness, generosity, hard, hard work.

- The good of all others always first and foremost.

 - Encouragement, high ideals

   blended with workable practicality.

 - A warm, nurturing way.

 - Found beauty everywhere.

 - Knew how to laugh.

 - Knew how to cry.

- A right at home mystic.

        Brother Marius

- The care taker and handyman

   at the seminary.

- So singularly, totally in full focus on God.

- A mystic on a lawn mower.

        Father Anthony Vivona

- A quiet, not much noticed priest.

- Had the courage to be

  who and how he really was.

- Introduced me to

  the contemplative, mystical life by

  his passionate love affair with God.


         The weekly greeting here at

               "frankly speaking"


                   "Hi There !"

           comes from Father Vivona.

       That's how he always greeted me.


         Rita "Ma" Willett

- Rough, tough widow.

- Raised thirteen children

  in extreme poverty and

  with a determination

  of steely faith.

- She wasn't pretty or poetic,

  but she sure was beautiful.

     Father James McMillan

- The greatest thinker and scholar

               I ever met.

- Taught in an obscure setting.

- Introduced me to the intellectual life,

               one with soul,

      one open to unendingness.


- Strong, vigorous farm woman.

- Robust of spirit.

- Generous to a fullness.

- Could laugh at a bug walking backward,

  and most of all at herself.

- Free and freeing soul.

- Contagious zest for life,

  life received, life given.

OK, time out.

Let's list the


of this world

who have made

all the difference

in the world to you

as you have come alive spiritually.

                  LIST OF


              WHO REALLY


Let's think and pray, then name the top six,

 and reconvene in ten








           Ten Later

Pretty counter intuitive, right?

And there's the paradox.

         Those named

so different and delightfully so

           than the

       "Big Names,



of commerce, politics,

entertainment, the academe.

         Try this on.

When we come to die,

          who will


            for us?

Bill Gates or our own Father Vivona?

Well, before we get there,

we have a lot of living to do

right here, right now.

So, over the next week let's focus

on those dear ones who are

our spiritual patrons saints



Let's let them be present to us anew.

It will  renew and refresh us.

It will redirect and reconstitute our spirits

out here on the street of every day living.

Like most of them, we don't


        in the public eye.

          Thank God !

One less illusion and distraction.

Happily, though, we are invited

        to what really does


in the long ( forever ) run -

free, full, open, joyous,

rambunctious, expansive


     received and given,

    and that without end.

Numbers just can't go that high,

            but we can.

     We are meant to really


 As my dear friend, Bill Engisch say,

             "Love to all."

              John Frank


For those new to our sharing:

-"frankly speaking" is posted every Friday

                          online at

and can easily be bookmarked for ready access.

- "frankly speaking" is also available

    by automatic email delivery

    every Saturday.

    Please see the top right of the

    online version for sign up.

 - Past posting are available at Blog Archive.

   It is located at the bottom right

   of the online version.









Friday, June 8, 2018


         PLEASE NOTE

           The Friday,

           June 15th.

             issue of

       "frankly speaking"

      will be posted online

  Saturday Evening

                          June 16th.

   It will be available by email

   Sunday Evening

                          June 17th.

             Thank You!

Hi There !

So, when was the last time

you heard a really good sermon

about being  prophetic,

about giving unflinching

to a significant wrong?

For that matter,

when was the last time

you caught yourself

just itching for

such a sermon anyway?

For most of us

it's at least a  -12

on a scale of 1-10.
Truth to tell,

and that's what prophets do,

who the heck wants it,

the bald, bold, unwashed,

(as in not watered down),


We're rather adept at

dancing around sheer truth.

In (not so) good part,

we prefer to play/pretend truth

down to a shadow of itself.

For all our protestations

to the contrary,

we're not all that fond of truth.

Just check out what we get and take

from advertisers and politicians,

and how we handle a personal critique

pointing out an uncomfortable truth

about ourselves.

When I get caught out like that,

say about my sermon

being way too long,

I usually play "nice, nice"

on the outside about the


but you shouldn't hear

what I say inside!!

It sure isn't "nice, nice."

I/We shouldn't really get

all hot and bothered

about those kinds of

   a low intensity


Turned around the other way,


 we sure as heaven should get

hot and bothered enough to


when there is evil loose among us.

A good example of a bad

                    that needs a vigorous


         right now

is the horrific practice

                        in our country of

separating immigrant children

      from their parents.

Yet, how many of us

and our political leaders

are hot and bothered enough

to be giving a vigorous


    to such a blatant




That sin should make us forget

being bothered over the likes of

     "Nice try, but your sermon

       went about fifty miles too far,"


    " Haven't seen you in months

       and where ever did you pick up

        all the new fullness?"

Way more, though,

it should make us

so  hot and bothered that

we make a lot of noise,

         take a stand,

until the truth about the evil of

separating children

                  from their parents

     is faced and corrected.

It is a hideous, violent practice.

         According to

The Department of Health

and Human Services,

10,773 migrant children

 are in government custody this week,

     torn away from their parents.

This travesty comes from

an administration that talks

       "family values,"


          "right to life."

Make that "double talk."

How about the right to family life?

How about upholding

"the God given natural order of things" -

mom, dad and kids together

as a family unit?

The administration claims that

          "it's the law."


            "the law"

    is wrong and immoral

         and must face


 Jesus was murdered under

             "the law."

 White people founded this nation

with enslaving black people

built into its foundation and

          "the law."

The killing  of women

attempting to marry outside

their caste or religion is

          "the law"

in sectors of our world right

     to this sad day.

   "The Law"

is not necessarily,

           nor essentially moral.

Consider laws protecting

       slavery and segregation

  in our country's past.

When law is not moral,

it needs a strong, clear,

non-compromising and



In terms of our current and

pernicious immigration practice

of severing children

                    from their parents,

I'll bet one of those

           record breaking,

           high profile,

          much touted

       executive orders

    from the White House

could make a saving difference,

could uphold family values and

the right to life as a family,

make adjustments to the practice

of stealing children away

from their parents until

           "the law"

           is righted.

To expel immigrants is one issue.

To violate the natural order

in the process is a devilish other.


Being prophetic, standing up,

and often standing way out

on a limb to do that,

to speak for truth and justice,

is not only a bother, it can be costly.

       As a newly ordained,

I was asked to be right up front,

a white man in a black clerical suit,

     in a civil rights march

in segregated southern Maryland.

        That was  in 1968.

Martin Luther King

                  and Bobby Kennedy

had recently been shot to death.

       Civil rights workers

were beaten and even killed.

It was an angry, violent time.

We got a death threat just before

 we left church that morning for the march.

      I was a clear, easy target.

I feared I might be shot by evening.

   Leading that march was a


    I didn't want to give,

        but I had to give.

Years later I was working

in the Chancery.

The bishop and I

were in daily contact.

We were quite friendly.

He was also my superior.

He buckled under pressure

and countermanded my decision

to hire a properly laicized,

highly recommended priest

with a doctorate in theology.

That man had a family to support.

The bishop denied him

the chance to do that in his field.

     I had no choice but to


           the bishop.

     It strained a friendship

         and threatened

       my clerical climb

        ( shame on me!).

A caution.

In a run up to the crucifixion of Jesus

          the soldiers involved,

          the one's torturing

     and preparing to execute him

            did so under

             "the law,"

    They taunted him:

      "Prophesy to us.

          Who is it that struck you?"

                       (Matthew 26: 68)

      Jesus kept silent.

Sometimes saying nothing,

not playing into a contrivance,

withholding a recommendation,

and other forms of silence

are the appropriate 


There are other times,


  when to be real,

we "real"-ly must be




    loud and clear


 "...speaking the truth in love."

                     (Ephesians 4:15)

It gets up front, personal

      and practical for

spouses, partners, children,

parents, business associates,

pastors and congregants,

police and military, politicians,

advertisers, merchants,

coaches and teachers,

citizens and neighbors.

All of us do well

to heed the wisdom and


            of Jesus


"The truth will make you free."

           ( John 8:32 )

That does not mean we are free

to mount our own, personal Inquisition

every time something is wacky or annoying

      It does mean we need

to accept a prophetic word or action of


            addressed to us


  to give such when truly necessary

              to others.

Either and both can be difficult.

Either and both are fundamental

to our spiritual life and health out here

on the street of everyday living.

By the way, I recently visited

a wonderful United Methodist Church

                 and heard

         "... a really good sermon

         about being prophetic,

         about giving unflinching


                  to a wrong."

It in part was the prompt for this blog.

The pastor gave a principled, balanced,

scriptural reminder that we need

to take a stand for the truth -

              Jesus is

            " the way,

           THE TRUTH,

            and the life."

         (  John 14:16 ) -

even if that stand for the truth

costs us money, friends, position.

That sermon was refreshing and itself a


one we too rarely hear in church,

but one essential to our spiritual lives.

By writing all this  I run the risk

of loosing friends and followers of this blog.

Well, that is a risk this

                  not so brave me just has to take.

          Every once in a while,

               we all need to


                 and to be


It's not an every day, all the time matter.

Nor is it a matter of being

                       prickly and judgemental.

It's a matter of  taking a stand

                              so others can stand.

Teresa of Avila fleshes out

taking a stand for others,

standing in in the Truth of Jesus.

     "Christ has no body now, but yours.

      No hands, no feet on earth, but yours. 

      Yours are the eyes through which

      Christ looks compassion into the world

      Yours are the feet

      with which Christ walks to do good.

      Yours are the hands

      with which Christ blesses the world."

Spirituality for the street

in one way or many means

"We are all just walking each other home."

                                                    Ram Dass

Thanks for considering all this today.

"The truth will make you free."

That's the promise and the


       Holding each and all

      In God's Dear Love,

            John Frank


Each Friday

(except next Friday )

"frankly speaking"

is posted online at

and can be bookmarked for easy access.

Each Saturday

(except next Saturday)

"frankly speaking"

is available by email.

For automatic, weekly delivery

please see the email sigh up

at the top right of the online version.

Past postings are available at

Blog Archive,

which is located at

the bottom right of the online version.



Friday, June 1, 2018


Hi There !

So, Kyle came over for dinner

the other night.

Guaranteed, you'd really like him.

He's seventeen, big and strong.

That goes for his soul, mind,

and ever ready smile as well.

As Kyle moved into

his second generous portion of

"Hammered Chicken,"

(a family favorite)

flavored orzo, avocado

and lettuce salad,

home made bread, asparagus,

 (and while keeping

an eager eye on

the chocolate cake waiting

over on the server),

we got to talking about school.

Kyle shared how grateful he is

that he has been home schooled.

Among other things,

it has allowed him

to hold to Creationism,

and not be forced to accept

other understandings.

Now, it so happens that

I understand and speak

about creation

quite differently than Kyle.

I chose not to speak

those differences at the table.

That wasn't to play it safe,

nor be polite.

It was to widen our sharing

rather than shut it down.

Neither Kyle nor I were around

at the get go of creation.

We both believe that God

is the creative power.

Just how God did it,

or in my view is still doing it,

is way bigger than

any human explanation,

or doctrinal encasement.

Like everyone else,

Kyle and I draw from

the multiple and varied

takes of 


geologist, religious texts,

philosophers, theologians,

biologists and

my barber, Harry.

None were primary

to the occurrence.

So, rather than play God,

arguing human articulations,

Kyle and I had a good time

talking about the gifts

and wonders of  God's creation,

( including that

delicious chocolate cake ).

Glad we did that.

That approach

       faces differences

           and looks to fields

              of sharing and support.

Right now our societal setting

is stuck in aggressive defense/offense

of difference, and that to the peril of

sharing and support,

if not our continuance.

It's down right dangerous and lethal.

Things have not only "gone ballistic,"

they threaten to go nuclear,

metaphorically and actually.

It's pervasive:

politics, religion, morals,

economics, governance, and racial,

ethnic to international relations.

It's a cultural war.

( See Ross Douthat's  Op Ed piece,

 NYT, May26,2018

for one view of this war).

In this belligerent, toxic atmosphere

we try to live out our spiritual lives.

And this belligerent, toxic atmosphere

is right where we can

freshen and free up things

for our choking, warring

constricted society.

It comes down to what

Kyle  and I experienced:

    face differences

          and look to fields

             of sharing and support.

"Live and let live "is good,

 but it is not good enough.

We need to

"Live and help live."

Let's frame it this way.

We all share existence.

How we interpret,

explain and live it varies.

Those variables are not

of the essence of existence.

Dealing with, allowing for

difference is imperative.

It's "Live and let live,"

perhaps better put as

"Live and let live to keep living."

If, however, we stay

on the surface of things,

our differences will destroy us.

If we go deep,

think and act from

the Center of

our shared existence,

we can deal with difference

and sprint together

to fields of unitive engagement.

That's spirituality

for the street in our right now -

all manner of differing people

gathered, facing their differences

and focused

beyond those differences -

shoulder to shoulder,

busy doing good things together

and thus truly "being" together.

          " To direct the mind towards

             the basic unity of all things

             and to divert it from

             the seizing of difference -

             therein lies bliss."

                       Tejo-Bindu Upanishad

This comes about in all

 manner and modes

 of teaming up

 to share and support:

   - working together to get

     a group of inner city kids

     to summer camp

   - forming  a local writers'

     and artists' colloquium

   -  campaigning together for

      the political party

      of your shared persuasion

    - organizing a community garden

      that grows enough extra

      to feed local needy

    - developing a support group

       for single parents -

       spotting each other

       for child care,

       providing social settings

       and activities

       for single parents

       and their and kids

    - mounting a week long,



     work team repairing homes

     in Appalachia

     ( if you do, please

      let me know

      and I in turn will alert

     Fox and  CNN !! )

    - enjoy regular Food Fests,

      serving and savoring

      each other's different ethnic

      and regional foods

    - putting  together

      a mentoring team

      for at risk teens

   - visiting each other's

      religious services.

   -  fielding a sports league

       with Jews, Moslems,

       alt-left and righters,

       Hindus, Christians,

       agnostics, atheists,

       and anybody passing by,

       on every team and  then

       name the league

       "Differently Together" -

         (be sure to serve

          veggie dogs and

          beanburger along

          with the hot dogs

          and hambergers)

       - hiking, going to concerts

         and museums together

        - hosting Insight Evenings

          where people explain

          their traditions

          and  rituals in an open,


          non-persuasive way

       - sharing an away, silent,

         spiritual retreat

       - frequently holding

         each other's babies

Working together,

walking together,

brings together.

God is One,

and we are invited

to be counted in!!

Glad we are together here.

In God's Dear Love,

    John Frank

If you have the time and interest,

please consider the

Addendum that follows.


This week we had our first ever

participation from Ecuador.

Good to welcome you and

be welcomed by you.

- "frankly speaking is

posted every week on Friday and

is delivered by email on Saturdays.

- Online it is available at

and can be bookmarked for easy access.

Sign up for automatic,

weekly email delivery

is at the top right of the online version.

Past postings are available from the

Blog Archive at the bottom right

of the online version.

Thanks to all who have shared

"frankly speaking" with family and friends.



Honesty and Humility

We really need to be

honest and humble,

not claiming absolute,

divine or scientific certainty

and completeness

for our limited, human attempts

to explain things way bigger

than we are so far.

Biblical and scientific matters

are a clear example of that today.

Humans are indeed inspired to reveal.

We catch on to a goodness

and express it our way.

Our way is limited.

Einstein regularly reminded us

that there  is a vastness and mystery

way beyond where we are or can go.

We certainly can be on to

deep insight and critical truths,

but we cannot know

or express them fully.

Consider the biblical writers

of Genesis.

They conveyed a central truth -

God's creative love and action.

That more than qualifies

as a divine revelation,

a revelation "about,"

but not exhaustive

of God's creation.

It is described,

is toned, colored and limited

by what the writers

had available to them

in their time and culture.

Their metaphorical description of

 God's Six DayWork Week,

and a good rest on the seventh day,

put it well for

the working people

of their time.

It is also a variation

on a number of Creation Myths

current in their region at the time.

Myth does not mean untrue.

It means a truth expressed

in a metaphorical story.

It's important not to confuse

the package for the content.

It works the same way for science.

Read centuries of scientific history.

A scientific theory or fact

is refined or replaced

by a clearer one,

and that repeatedly

by more and more over time.

Remember The Peking Man.

Scientist are dealing with

the mystery of energy.

They tell it the best they can

with the understandings.

the calculations

and articulations

available to them at the time.

With time, those expand and change.

Whether it's biblical or scientific writers,

philosophers, psychologist, theologians -

the whole troop of thinkers and teachers,

I 'd say we are getting pretty good

at understanding and describing a leaf,

a leaf on one branch

of one tree

in the forest of existence.

Honesty and Humility.

Different peoples understand, describe,

and live out the mystery of existence

in different ways.

We need to face those differences

and focus on sharing and supporting

as together we start  to deal with

the second leaf

and endlessly more

in the forest of existence.