Angelo Guissepe Roncalli, born in 1881, dedicated himself to becoming a priest at eight
and was ordained three months before the minimum age of 23.
He earned a Ph.D. and had a scholarly disposition; yet, he continually found himself
caring for the suffering. In Italy, before WWI, he organized emigration offices for
thousands to seek employment outside their poor country. He served in the medical corps
in the "Great War" then in 1925 served in Bulgaria, organizing relief efforts after the
1928 earthquakes and floods. During WWII, he issued baptismal certificates to Jews and
Wilton Lewis stood with his hands on his hips, studying the sanctuary wall, not trusting himself to speak. He wanted to spit, was thwarted by the fact that he was inside, and instead swallowed hard and said, “This is vile. Disgusting and vile.” He turned to his right and added, “I apologize, Reverend Cashmore. This does not represent the good people of Port William. You know that, I hope.”
Since Albert Einstein is considered the genius above all geniuses, he is often credited quotes he never said. (If Einstein said it, it must be true.) That includes the saying that insanity is defined as doing the same thing again and again and expecting to get a different result. Actually, it wasn't until the 1980's that he was first connected to that saying, but it doesn't matter who actually said it, because these three scriptures seem to validate the saying.
Seven years ago, our family moved from southern Virginia to northeast Wisconsin. As you might expect, spring comes later here. Fall comes earlier. And winter is a much different experience in northeast Wisconsin than it was in southern Virginia. The same temperatures that seemed bone-chilling in Virginia are good reason to leave the mufflers and mittens at home in Wisconsin. Of course, many of the retired folks in my congregation here take their cue from the geese and fly south for the winter each year.