Friday, November 30, 2018


Hi There !

"May she/he rest in peace."

I've offered that final funeral prayer

just south of twelve hundred times

over the past fifty years.

Rather regularly it causes me

to wonder if we have to wait

 'til grave or urn to

 "rest in peace."

Reading history, checking the news,

counseling all types and strips of us,

looking in the mirror,

hearing countless confessions,

people watching,

supermarket to symphony,

causes me to wonder,

indeed to worry, about that.

So many say they want peace.

Some devoutly pray for it.

Some work hard

 "to get along" with everyone.

Some kill for it.

Since I was born in 1940,

how many wars, deaths,

how much devastation

and destruction,

life wounds, resources

and finance used up

have there been

"killing for peace,"

and where is that peace?

So many say they want peace.

Some drink and drug for it.

Some work for 

social justice and accord

hoping for it.

Some "shop 'til they drop "

trying to buy it.

Some see shrinks.

Some binge.

Some are dedicated to 

Yoga, Tai Chi,

 mindfulness sessions.

Some vigorously vacation and party.

Some have affairs.

Some hike and run.

Some worship at the altar of

non-stop sports and entertainment

trying to numb their way to it.

Some go to religious services seeking it.

Some drown their consciousness

with surround sound.

Some explore 

various spiritualities seeking it.

Some look to philosophy, 

psychology, the arts for it.

Some do porn.

Some go on retreats searching for it.

So many seek peace so many ways.

When we don't find peace 

we get grumpy, moody, 

depressed, agitated, angry.

Some politicians and media moguls 

parley that, driving wedges

in our hearts and between us.

Hate groups, hate media, terrorists,

young males with guns, 

devastate and destroy.

Nations spend

 "the kids lunch money,"

and way so much more, 

incessantly arming

"for peace."

Lovers leave.

Families fray.

Trivia, factual manipulation,

gossip pollute 

airways and awareness.

Corporations leave 

The Common Good in the dust.

     "Peace, peace,
         but there is
          no peace."

     ( Jeremiah 6:14 )

Sadly so.

Yet, happily there is peace.

Lots of it.

We all have some combination of

grandparents, Soul Friends, 

coworkers, acquaintances, congregants,

who are genuinely peace people,

ones who settle us 

and their surroundings

with their for real peacefulness.

I fondly and gratefully remember

the steadiness, calm, centeredness

of old Father John

back in my seminary days.

Just being in his presence

was settling and "whole-ly."

With him things were 

of a piece, 

a peace.

A few years ago 

a deranged young man

terrorized a little Amish school

in Lancaster County, Pennsylvania.

He shot and killed 

five, sweet little girls,

and inflicted permanent trauma

upon the other children 

and the families.

In response, the Amish elders

immediately went to care 

for the wife and children

of that deranged, young man.

That's peace,

    "A peace that passes
        all understanding."
   ( at least for most so far )

         ( Philippians 4:7 )

I recently met a zippy, 

zesty young couple

in their twenties who are doing

wilderness therapy with troubled

and addicted teens,

helping them free up

and experience 

a balanced peacefulness.

When we get right down to it,

better, when we're up for it,

just what is peace?

Does it come to us in positive

or negative ways,

is it a doing or a not doing?

It seems the saints, 

the ones who are "whole,"

find that peace is 

the result of things being as

they really are at their core - 

genuine, alive, loving, 

creative, restorative, real.

It took Augustine half his life

to find that peace,

to let himself accept peace.

He finally experienced that

and expressed it:

" Peace is the tranquility of order."

Now, that's worth a lot of 

good long looks

and frequent revisits.

There is a calm, a freeing, a harmony

when things are in right arrangement,

are ordered and settled 

in their basic realness.

Paul VI said that'

  "If you want peace
   work for justice."

In other words, get things

  (Latin for "right")

  among you and within you.

Francis of Assisi prayed 

for peace in words,

but much more in his living:




Lord, make me an instrument

of your peace.

Where there is hatred,

let me sow love.

Where there is injury, pardon,

Where there is doubt, faith.

Where there is despair, hope.

 Where there is darkness, light.

 Where there is sadness, joy.

  O divine master grant that

  I may not so much seek

  to be consoled as to console,

  to be understood as to understand,

  to be loved as to love.

  For it is in giving that we receive.

  It is in pardoning that we are pardoned,

  and it is in dying that we are born

  to eternal life.

Now, that's an action plan,

a peace plan.

It's down right, 

actually up right, 


    "Blessed are

     the peacemakers,

     for they shall be called

     children of God."

       ( Matthew 5:9 )


     personal life,

            social life,

                 international life

        lived like that.

Peace is love let loose!!

How do we out here

on the street of everyday living

find our way to peace?

Probably the best way of all

is to "catch it," is to share

in the life, the spirit,

of the most peaceful person 

you can find.

For me that is Jesus The Christ.

He has it together, embodies

"the tranquility of order."

He is the incarnation 

of Cosmic Love - God.

He is Love let loose 

in the most personal way.

Happily Jesus is more than willing

to welcome us into a union with him

so complete that 

his spirit becomes our spirit,

that his peace becomes our peace.

We are invited into his realness,

his flow, dynamic in peace, 

powered by his love;

    "My peace I leave you;

     my peace I give you.

     I do not give

     as the world gives.

     Do not let your hearts
     be troubled and
     do not be afraid."

      ( John 14: 27 )

What a source and sharing.

We let Jesus draw us into himself

by meditation, prayer, sacrament,

worship, modeling him, joining his love

of all people and all creation,

and being active in their care.

That opens us up to his flow.

Peace is the result of being:

  - rooted right and real 

    in love and life,

  - and that vibrantly active 

    in thought,word, deed, 

    action and attitude,

    through and through

  - personally and communally

   letting love loose 

   in all affections and actions.

We don't have to wait

 'til grave or urn

to "rest in peace."

Right now, 

we can experience and share

a vigorous living of love, of justice,

and the resultant "tranquility of order"

in our heads, hearts, souls and society

as love is let loose.

"Peace be with you!"

       John Frank


If you are willing to invest

a healthy portion of time,

"Pacem in Terris"

by John XXIII

is a masterful, brilliant treatise

on peace so suited to our time,

need and potential.

It can be sourced through Google.

See" Combat High, America's addiction to war"

Harper's magazine, June 2018,

Forum, beginning at page 25.


We are blessed with new folks

joining us regularly.

Thank you for the gift of you.

Please share this blog with others.

          WELCOME !!

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and soul going over

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   Consider Your Source

  ( right column online posting )

      for an orientation to

        "frankly speaking."

                  It is

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                           THANK YOU




Friday, November 23, 2018


Hi There !

So, when things turn out


it's a right turn for sure.

Things like:

      - two perfectly connecting flights 

        and you get to Chicago 

        ahead of schedule

      - that first date that means for sure 

        there's plenty more to come

      - your signature souffle 

        that was perfect at 

        last night's dinner party

      - securing a spectacular contract 

        for your firm

      - scripting a poem that  

        speaks your soul

      - a winning slam dunk 

        in the last two seconds of 

        the championship final

      - restoring that 

        1932 Ford Coupe to a "T"

      So good when things are

             JUST RIGHT

As we widen our focus,

we see the same is true

in our spiritual lives

out here on the street

of everyday living -

our individual part 

and the universal whole 

we share with all.

This, by the important way, 

bares absolutely no resemblance 

to any sort of puritanical or 

perfectionistic arrogance

in our spiritual living. 

They are not at all right.

Rather, and ever so better,

is our oneness in

    God's Work 
   getting things


Pardon my Latin, but

"just" and "right"

 are identical twins.


       from the Latin 




    as in getting things

       JUST RIGHT.

Our spiritual lives are 

      a continuance 

in this time and place of



the work of getting things
         JUST RIGHT

- if "God" is not your 
  accustomed appellation, 
        please insert 
Existence, Reality,, Being,
   Cosmic Energy Field,
or your own particular word for
   The Whole Enchilada -

      .rights wrong

                    rights creation.



Some times things are not at all right.

Rather, they are dead wrong,

as dead wrong as the 

Pittsburgh Synagogue Slaughter

as dead wrong as the

economic/social imbalance of

          99% to 1%

or the rape of Mother Earth.

Evil is energy gone wrong -

people playing God,

social systems structured 

to the advantage of a selfish few

and the degradation 

of painfully so many,

the abuse of peoples and places.

I don't have the time 

nor competence

to deal fully with 

the problem of evil.

   But God does

and we are invited 

to join in,  

to right the wrong 

in the here and now,

to be part of the ongoing 

redemptive love 

and work of God.

In and with him 

we return good for evil.

Thus, evil is replaced 

with good 
      one moment, 

      one person, 

      one place,

       one setting 

at a time.

  "Do not repay evil with evil...
   do not be overcome by evil, 

   but overcome evil with good."

    ( Romans 12:17 and 21)


In the particulars and practicalities 

of our living we are part of

God's redemptive love

    "Righting Wrong"

until one day things are


Some Examples:

    - not to break up or back  off 

      when someone close is being 

      wackie or weird - 

      it's called long suffering and

      requires high octane love

   -  to have lunch with the local 

      and consistently avoided nerd

      at work or school

   - to pay day laborers $20 an hour

   - to get out of the way 

     and let the tailgater go

   - to calmly and clearly challenge 

      a "play it safe" pastor

      who just won't address

      social justice issues in sermons

    - to tip big time an inattentive waiter

    - to be proactive in welcoming

      minority folk when they arrive 

      in the area (or religious community )

Yes, "overcome evil with good"

             until things are

            JUST RIGHT.



So far, so good.

And it doesn't stop there or ever.

It just gets exponentially better.

      Our moniker for it is


and we're all invited to the party.

We are asked to help get it 

          JUST RIGHT.

To put it in the vernacular,

God has ants in his pants 

and just can't keep

goodness to himself.

God thrills to pour out 

his enthusiastic energy

in ever new, imaginative, 

spectacular creations.

Sticking with the vernacular,

God is like a gourmet chef 

serving up one new excellence 

after plenty before

God is like a toy maker 

bursting forth with 

fascination upon fascination

God is just getting started.

He's on a roll

and he wants us in on 

the exuberance spiraling out

in never to end beauty.

Here's a bit of 

a sampler of possibilities

as we co-create with God,

righting creation:

    - whatever our orientation,

      socializing, mixing it up 

      with folks of other orientations

    - retired folks refusing 

      to "park" it in,



       with a whole new set 

       of  wheels     

       and off they go 

       in new directions of

       care and creativity

       like never before -

           *writing poetry,

           *doing watercolors,

           *building houses 

            for the homeless,
           *mentoring teens 

            in dangerous drift,

          * hosting groups for

           inter- generational sharing

    - simplify by shopping

      in thrift stores and thus 

      recycling rather than land fill  

      everything from clothing to a

      vintage Howdy Doody cap

      ( a cap like that would 

       get things going

      next time on the links!!)

    - being practically and

      locally active in politics 

      so that it gets a chance to be 

      what it's meant to be - 

     high minded, warm hearted 

     principles put into practice

    - moving away from the 

      trivia and falseness of so much 

     social media and instead

     calling people by phone, 

     writing them letters, 

     sending them pictures of the kids

   - selecting a career tract 

     that lifts and frees you 

     and lots of others

   - taking a gap year or two 

     to serve in groups like Sojourners, 

     Jesuit Volunteer Corps, L'Arche

    - starting a spirituality group 

      in the spirit of John Wesley's 

      "Ecclesiolae in Ecclesia"

      ( a little church within the church)

      for deeper community and 

      substantive soul share

     -securing farm and forest land preservation.

Between you, justice focused colleagues

and The Holy Spirit, The Spirit of Truth,

you are sure to get creation wonderfully

                JUST RIGHT

Thanks to God and so many of you.

Our little, weekly circle of sharing

here at "frankly speaking"

continues to widen.

Let's daily hold each in God's Love.

May our love, prayers, 

and hopefully this blog,

support us all in vigorously living

our spiritual lives out here on

the street of everyday living,

in whatever country/context it runs 


   Every goodness and blessing.

         Holding you and yours 

          In God's Dear Love,

                John Frank


 We happily welcome those new

 to our weekly sharing here.

Thank you for your company.

To get a sense of 

what we are about here,

please do spend a few minutes 

and lots of self with

         - What's Going On Here?


         - Consider Your Source.

           (right column online) 


              "frankly speaking"

          spirituality for the street


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