Monday, November 23, 2009
Tuesday, October 13, 2009
Sunday, August 2, 2009
Thursday, July 30, 2009
Does anyone else think that Charlie Day (writer, producer and actor of "It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia) looks and acts just like Bobcat Goldthwait? I had a freaky dream about it last night and can't get it out of my head. Other than the above evidence, here is some more:
Wednesday, July 29, 2009
After different papers have scrapped a few of my stories, I was happy to see my school board story hit the stands today. Read it here.
This story was my first experience at a tribal council meeting, and was inter interesting, if nothing else. I'm still working hard on my final series that should be out in a few weeks.
Thursday, July 23, 2009
Last week was the annual feast day of Blessed Kateri Tekakwitha. I covered the story and they chose different photos. I like the photo just above of Deacon Ben Black Bear praying the rosary with the congregation in front of the Monstrance. He prayed the first half of the prayer in Lakota and we finished in English. Good stuff.
Monday, July 20, 2009
I could NEVER live without my blanket, Manky. Ask Abby. Or Ricky. Or my parents. As a kid, special arrangements would have to be made if I was going to sleep somewhere. I couldn't apparently make the "bl" sound as a kid, so instead of Blanky, she became Manky. I wouldn't need a change of clothes or a toothbrush, but I would need my Manky. I guess nothing has changed. my teeth may be crooked from sucking my thumb obsessively until I was like 13, but it was totally worth it.
Thursday, July 16, 2009
Sunday, July 12, 2009
Friday, July 10, 2009
The grass has infiltrated our garden.
It's hiding under the beats
and strangling the carrots.
Why do you have to grow in the garden?
You get to grow everywhere else.
Weeds are one thing.
Easy to pull.
But your roots are too deep, grass.
I can never dig deep enough
to make sure you're gone for good.
Leave our garden alone!
Thursday, July 9, 2009
Brother Patrick Douglas, S.J. walked into the Body Mind and Soul summer camp in St. Francis and automatically started making conversation with one of the first graders sitting at a table with his friends.
Rubbing his bald head Douglas joked, “Hey, I like your haircut, but I think you need it a little shorter like mine.”
The boy laughed with some of the others at his table. This is just one example of what the people who know Douglas say about him: that he’s good-natured and can make anyone feel comfortable.
But the hair-do, or lack thereof, is just the half of it. He’s a young man, by the Jesuits’ standards, in his early 30s, sports a tattoo, a goatee, makes chain-link rosaries in his spare time and can juggle just about anything from bowling pins to knives.
“What can I say, I’m a Renaissance man,” he said. “You don’t have to be a specific type of person to be called to the Jesuits. God calls all sorts of people to different vocations: religious life, marriage, anything.”
Douglas is the newest addition to the Jesuit community at the Saint Francis Mission, who will be working on the reservation for the next two or three years. He previously worked for Holy Rosary on the Pine Ridge reservation before joining the Jesuits, but never lived on the Rosebud.
“I’m excited to get started, I think I can lean a lot from living out here,” he said. “I have found the most helpful thing is to just ask questions. Most people don’t like it when you come in and start telling them what’s what. I don’t know what it’s like to be a Native man, so I plan on being a Jesuit brother, learning the culture, respecting the culture and letting people teach me.”
While Douglas is one of four Jesuits on Rosebud, he is the only Jesuit brother. This means, while he takes the same vows as Jesuit priests, he does not perform sacramental ministry such as saying Mass or performing the rite of baptism.
Douglas, who has a master’s degree in counseling from Loyola Chicago and a background in working in juvenile detention centers and, more recently, with drug and alcohol recovery, plans on working with the Betty Ford program and with local youth. Because he is just now arriving, he doesn’t have concrete plans on where his ministry will lead him.
The Rev. John Hatcher, S.J., president of Saint Francis Mission, said he heard about Douglas two years ago and was automatically interested in having him work for the Mission. Hatcher wants him to work with the juvenile court judge to start talking circles in the juvenile detention center and aftercare for young people coming out of the JDC. On top of that, Douglas will be working with counseling, alcohol and drug recovery and youth programming in Parmelee.
Hatcher said he went to the JDC last summer to do some work with the youth, but wasn’t able to follow up because of lack of personnel.
“The reports we got back is that they were really excited we were there,” Hatcher said, “so it’s important to have something more regularly for spiritual direction, counseling talking circles, recovery, anything.”
Douglas first learned about the Jesuits at Creighton Prepatory High School in Omaha, where he grew up, but didn’t think seriously about joining until he was 28 and working as a social worker in St. Paul, Minn.
“I didn’t have some sort of ‘ah ha’ moment, but I did have this emptiness deep down and this call just kept getting louder and louder,” he said. “Joining the Jesuits was for me what falling in love is for other people. You spend all day thinking about this person, wondering what it’s like to be with this person… well that’s what the Jesuits was for me. I just couldn’t get it out of my head.”
Brother Mike Wilmot, S.J., knew Douglas at Creighton Prep when he was the dean of students and Douglas was a student.
“To tell you the truth, I knew his brother much better back in high school,” Wilmot said, chuckling. “His brother was in my office so often I knew his ID number by heart. I guess that means Brother Douglas wasn’t getting into too much trouble back then.”
Wilmot said he got to know Douglas better when he visited Porcupine.
“He told me he was seriously considering the Jesuits,” he said. “He’ll make a good Jesuit. He’s a good guy, easy to like and friendly to everyone. I’m sure he’ll do a lot of different things because that’s just the way he is, good at anything.”
Friday, June 12, 2009
Tuesday, June 9, 2009
Friday, June 5, 2009
Two stories I did recently: one on a stained glass project and another on the Christian Children's Fund working with the St. Francis community.
I had a great time doing the CCF story because it was the first time I did something not affiliated with the Mission, so I was able to hear people's take on the community who I wouldn't regularly hear from. You can read that here. Unfortunately the Rapid City Journal didn't post any of my photos with the online version.
The stained glass story was fun, too. I got to see kids taking pride in making something really cool, and the window looks great in the back of the church. Read it here.
This is a picture one group of kids did of St. Francis. They had to put happy face stickers on the places they thought were positice (home, church, school, etc.) and frowning faces on bad places. Wisdom corner (where alcoholics and homelss people hang out all day) and the cemetery were two places the kids chose.
Wednesday, May 20, 2009
Thursday, May 14, 2009
I was on a scenic road and saw a little turnoff to the river bank. I figured in my head that is would be a nice little clearing for picnics and whatnot, but instead it was just piles of trash, old mattresses and broken bottles. What a waste of such a beautiful view of the river.
I was told that originally these old cars were piled next to the river to stop erosion. I can't help but wonder what the rust an chemicals have done to the water that they seeped into.
Sunday, May 10, 2009
Sand dunes West of Spring Creek. What is so odd, Spring Creek may be the worst off of all the communities up here, but it is surrounded by the most beautiful country I've seen on the reservation so far. I only took a few of the sand dunes because I kept thinking I saw a snake... I'm a baby when it comes to snakes, just like Indiana Jones.
The river. I drove along it for miles until I could find a curve I loved. This one was may favorite. I've been taking photos all week, but the clouds were the best that day. Fo' sho'.