In late January a University of Illinois student named Vicente Mundo went missing, and was found murdered somewhere between Tolono and Philo over the weekend of January 31-February 1.
When praying for the dead, the Latin Catholic tradition says Requiem aeternam, “eternal rest,” while the Byzantine tradition both Orthodox and Catholic says Αἰωνία ἡ μνήμη, “eternal memory.” I could not help but think of how short human memory is when I saw this torn-off flyer, and contrast it with the eternal memory of God which is the ground of all being.
For Vicente Mundo, and for all the dead: Αἰωνία ἡ μνήμη! Αἰωνία ἡ μνήμη! Αἰωνία ἡ μνήμη!
I participate in a Lenten discussion group at a parish that has a chapel for perpetual Eucharistic adoration. The members of this group take turns in the chapel for an hour every Sunday evening, between 11 PM and midnight, and yesterday was my turn. I couldn’t resist lugging the camera along for a little devotional photography.
When we were first married, my wife was the organist at St. Thomas Catholic Church, Philo, IL, and in the course of her job we did much driving around southeastern Champaign County. Because of the Embarras River, which rises on the south side of Champaign and then flows southeast, this part of the county has gently rolling land, very gentle but enough to make it noticeably prettier (to my eye) than the rest.
We paid a visit recently to St. Thomas for Mass and were rewarded with this scene on the way home. I had forgotten how much I liked the area, and I’m inspired to go back for some less spur-of-the-moment pictures later this year.
When your children and your nephew have the day off school, what could be better than to go wandering around a local forest preserve? Sure, it may be January, and melting ice may make the boardwalk trail too slippery for mere mortals, but you’re going to have fun, dangit!
Slippery trails or no, it was worth it for this picture.