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The Cross and the Woodworker

In the small hamlet of Malverne, NY...on a small street named Acorn'll find a workman's heART carved into the shapes on Jesus' cross that hangs in the sanctuary

above the altar of the Church of the Intercessor. Eileen and I and our son John spent almost 30 formative years here...a story for another time..."Formative"...but I never graduated Sunday School, couldn't I loved being with the children...

According to Fr. Joseph Ciccarello their Worship Leader, Bob Hulbert's "hands were used in a mold to carve the hands you see on the cross as well as the feet. He also carved the altar trim that is pictured here, as well as the Bishop's Crozier, which he keeps with him. That's all I know. Hope that helps."

Fr. Joe added: "Bob Hulbert is living somewhere up in the Vermont area building log cabins."

Christ has no body now but OURS...

From this point on, I'm offering my own reflections...

Prayer is attributed to Teresa of Avila. See below for more about wonderful human being...

Teresa of Avila - Franciscan Media

Saint Teresa of Avila’s Story

Teresa lived in an age of exploration as well as political, social, and religious upheaval. It was the 16th century, a time of turmoil and reform. She was born before the Protestant Reformation and died almost 20 years after the closing of the Council of Trent.

The gift of God to Teresa in and through which she became holy and left her mark on the Church and the world is threefold: She was a woman; she was a contemplative; she was an active reformer.

As a woman, Teresa stood on her own two feet, even in the man’s world of her time. She was “her own woman,” entering the Carmelites despite strong opposition from her father. She is a person wrapped not so much in silence as in mystery. Beautiful, talented, outgoing, adaptable, affectionate, courageous, enthusiastic, she was totally human. Like Jesus, she was a mystery of paradoxes: wise, yet practical; intelligent, yet much in tune with her experience; a mystic, yet an energetic reformer; a holy woman, a womanly woman.

Teresa was a woman “for God,” a woman of prayer, discipline, and compassion. Her heart belonged to God. Her ongoing conversion was an arduous lifelong struggle, involving ongoing purification and suffering. She was misunderstood, misjudged, and opposed in her efforts at reform. Yet she struggled on, courageous and faithful; she struggled with her own mediocrity, her illness, her opposition. And in the midst of all this she clung to God in life and in prayer. Her writings on prayer and contemplation are drawn from her experience: powerful, practical, and graceful. She was a woman of prayer; a woman for God.

Teresa was a woman “for others.” Though a contemplative, she spent much of her time and energy seeking to reform herself and the Carmelites, to lead them back to the full observance of the primitive Rule. She founded over a half-dozen new monasteries. She traveled, wrote, fought—always to renew, to reform. In her self, in her prayer, in her life, in her efforts to reform, in all the people she touched, she was a woman for others, a woman who inspired and gave life.

Her writings, especially the Way of Perfection and The Interior Castle, have helped generations of believers.

In 1970, the Church gave her the title she had long held in the popular mind: Doctor of the

Church. She and St. Catherine of Siena were the first women so honored.


Ours is a time of turmoil, a time of reform, and a time of liberation. Modern women have in Teresa a challenging example. Promoters of renewal, promoters of prayer, all have in Teresa a woman to reckon with, one whom they can admire and imitate.

Interior Castle

Featuring James Finley & Mirabai Starr

--Online course offered by the Center for Action and Contemplation

--A spiritual journey through the seven mansions of St. Teresa of Ávila’s Interior Castle. Practices of prayer, reflection, humility, and self-knowledge will turn spiritual insights into experiential wisdom.


May 29, 2024 – July 9, 2024

Start Date

July 17, 2024


8 weeks



More about the presenters...Both, like Teresa, are deeply rooted in the contemplative tradition

James Finley

--Former Trappist monk James Finley talks about the spiritual benefits of contemplative practice for Christians.



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