Category - Christmas

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Christmas 2019
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Christmas, 2018
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Tears and Hugs: A Touching Hint of What?s To Come
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Christmas 2017
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Peace on Earth? Not the Other Night at Hemlani
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Christmas 2016
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Christmas 2015
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Christmas, 2014

Christmas 2019

One of the keynotes of this past year was a home visit during the summer. It was highlighted by a week with a family that has grown closer over the years, even if the members of this broad group are scattered throughout the northeast.     

Where exactly is home? I sometimes ask myself. Surely not Buffalo, where I haven’t lived for the past sixty years, even though the city holds warm memories from long ago and is still the residence of some family and good friends. Not even Chuuk and Pohnpei, places that offer other rich memories and bonds. Nor Guam, where I currently work. As a Jesuit friend of mine, who passed away early this year, used to say of the island in which he spent much of his life: “We have here no lasting city.”

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Christmas, 2018

Advent, the four weeks before Christmas, is traditionally a time of waiting. Kids everywhere know full well what this means, as their parents shop and decorate in preparation for the big day.

For me, waiting has defined the whole year… Waiting for the arrival of grant funds so that we can complete our video documentary on a major historical event on Pohnpei a century ago… Waiting for the local support we?re seeking to begin work on a new film on the homeless people on Guam, some 800 people without shelter… Waiting for the completion of the new website that will offer public access to the treasures of the MicSem library, now housed in Chuuk.

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Peace on Earth? Not the Other Night at Hemlani

A couple of nights ago I attended a wake for a Pohnpeian youth who had been stabbed to death two days earlier. It happened in a drunken fight here on Guam outside the Hemlani Apartments?a low-end unit situated right next to what looks like might be the island dump. The Hemlani Apartments have made the front page of the local newspaper quite a few times over the past year, usually because of some minor crime or drunken brawl.

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Christmas 2016

Old age and Christmas season are a tough combination. The old Yuletide favorites?with their ?silver bells? and ?sleigh bells? and ?jingle bells,? their wistful ?I?ll be home for Christmas,? not to mention the familiar melodies themselves?are dripping with nostalgia. As if an old-timer like me, head packed with fond memories, needed any more reminders of happy days past and marvelous holiday seasons!

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Christmas, 2014

Christmas greetings from the Bronx campus of Fordham University, where I have made my home for the past year. But my time here has always been with computer on and bags packed for forays to other places. Most of the trips have been to where the coconut tree grows and waves lap on warm shores. With five trips to Hawaii and beyond, as well as a recent spurt of trips to the islands for a total of ten weeks since September, my air travel was enough to win me platinum on United Airlines? mileage program?a status I never achieved in all my years living in Micronesia! Read More

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