Precious time


                 "What do you give if you do not give  of your time ?"


  A story dropped into my lap this week courtesy of my precious daughter-in-law Juanita, the contents of which are so poignant, so relevant and so urgent today.  I quote:

 A man came home from work late and tired, to find his seven year old son waiting for him at the door. "Daddy may I ask you a question ? " "Yes sure, what is it ? " replied the man "Daddy, how much do you get paid each hour ? " "That's none of your business;  why do you ask such an impertinent question ? " the man said angrily. "I just want to know, so please tell me," pleaded the little boy.

  "If you must know, I make $20 an hour, replied the father and now please go to your room. " Dad may I please, please borrow $10 " the boy went on.  The father was furious " Stay in your room! " he ordered.

  The little fellow complied and gently closed his bedroom door.  After a good meal the father felt sorry and going to the child's room asked " are you awake son ? " . "Ive been thinking, I was too hard on you, so here are your $10 ." The little boy jumped for joy and reaching under his pillow pulled out a roll of notes.

  " Daddy I now have $20 " he yelled "can I buy an hour of your time ? " "Please, please, come home early tomorrow, I would like to have dinner with you."


'If Mario crashes my car once more he will be shown the door'. these were the words of Jackino Attard who was smouldering in a tower of rage as he surveyed the damage done to his beloved car - his pride and joy.     Now six months later Mario had done it again.    This time he was literally booted out of the house and told not to return.The  hours passed into days and the days into weeks and yet there was neither sight nor sound of the troublesome boy.   Jackino was really worried.   On the advice of the Kappillan he decided to drop his pride and to do all in his power to bring back his wayward son.  Where, oh! where was Mario?

Jack had a brilliant idea.  He swung a large white banner across the frontage of an empty building in the village square which bore the following inscription in big, black, bold lettering:  MARIO COME HOME!  ALL IS FORGIVEN... SEE YOU HERE AT NOON SHARP ON SATURDAY. 


Mario arrived on the dot of time and so did five other urchins.  They did not look alike, but they all had one thing in common.   Each boy rejoiced in that wondrous name of  - MARIO.


"And a woman who held a babe against her bosom said, Speak to us of Children.     And he said :

Your children are not your children / they are the sons and daughters of Life's longing for itself.

They come through you but not from you / And though they are with you , yet they belong not to you.

You may give them your love but not your thoughts / For they have have their own thoughts.

You may house their bodies but not their souls / for their souls dwell in the house of to-morrow, which you cannot visit, not even in your dreams.

You may strive to be like them/ but seek not to make them like you / For life goes not backward nor tarries with yesterday.

You are the bows from which your children as living arrows are sent forth / The Archer sees the mark upon the path of the infinite   / and He bends you with His might that His arrows may go swift and far.

Let your bending in the Archer's hand be for gladness  / for even as He loves the arrows that fly / so He loves also the bow that is stable".

Khalil Gibran. 


'  In the immortal words of the same Lebanese poet Khalil Gibran:

 "what do you give, if you do not give of your time". 


The wrath of God is reserved for those who refuse compassion, no matter how religiously observent and religiously scrupulous they may be.      ( Amos 5 - 21 ). 


  "The hand that rocks the cradle rules the world" 


"There is nothing sure or lasting in this world.

Human opinions change from day to day,

but the words of Christ do not change or pass away.

However, those who listen to His words

but do not act on them, are building on sand.

Time will erase His words from their minds;

nothing will remain, nothing will come of them.

On the other hand , those who listen to His words

and who do act on them, are building on rock;

they will have something to show for their efforts,

something to be proud of,

and something that will last, last eternally."

The beatitudes are the badges of a true disciple of Christ.They are the marks of a child of God.  They make us rich in the sight of God.  They open our minds and hearts to a new way of seeing and judging.  They give us a whole new set of bearings .  The things the beatitudes stand for are very beautiful and  very precious, things such as peace, goodness, joy and love, gentleness, compassion, mercy, integrity...

a person who lives according to the beatitudes is already living in the kingdom of heaven. 

Eternal life will merely be the full blossoming of a plant that is green with life.


The Toys.

My little Son, who look'd from thoughtful eyes

And moved and spoke in quiet grown-up wise, 

Having my law the seventh time disobey'd, 

I struck him, and dismiss'd, 

with hard words and unkiss'd,

His Mother, who was patient, being dead.

Then, fearing lest his grief should hinder sleep, 

I visited his bed,

But found him slumbering deep,

With darken'd eyelids, and their lashes yet

From his late sobbing wet.

And I, with moan, 

Kissing away his tears, left others of my own;

For, on a table drawn beside his head, 

He had put, within his reach, 

A Box of counters and a red-vein'd stone,

A piece of glass abraded by the beach, 

And six or seven shells,

A bottle with bluebells.

And two French copper coins, ranged there with careful art,

To comfort his sad heart.

So when that night I pray'd

To God, I wept, and said:

Oh, when at last we lie with tranced breath,

Not vexing Thee in death,

And Thou rememberest of what toys

We made our joys, 

How weakly understood

Thy great commanded good, 

Then fatherly not less

Than I whom Thou has moulded from the clay,

Thou'lt leave Thy wealth, and say, "I will be sorry for their childishness".

Coventry Patmore.

(1823 - 1896).

 Anita Kilbride-Jones.

St,Paul's bay, Malta.



  Juanita & Daniel

above & below

Oisin & Daniel



Gold, Silver, Bronze !

 Sheba, Orlaith & Siobra

Christmas with Mark (Sheba's Husband), at Iosagan

Gran with Daniel 

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