May 19:  Jesus says in today’s gospel that He gave us a new commandment: “To love one another!” Jesus didn’t say this was one more commandment on top of all the rest of them, but simplified all commandments clear down to this one, little, easy-to-remember commandment, to love. I was wondering how many laws my Dad has to obey in his non-canine world, so I did a little googling and think Jesus would just shake his head at this judicial system.
In an example of a failed attempt to tally up the number of laws on a specific subject area, in 1982 the Department tried to determine the total number of criminal laws. In a project that lasted two years, the Department compiled a list of approximately 3,000 criminal offenses. This effort, headed by Ronald Gainer, a Justice Department official, is considered the most exhaustive attempt to count the number of federal criminal laws. In a Wall Street Journal article about this project, “this effort came as part of a long and ultimately failed campaign to persuade Congress to revise the criminal code, which by the 1980s was scattered among 50 titles and 23,000 pages of federal law.” Or as Mr. Gainer characterized this fruitless project: “[y]ou will have died and [been] resurrected three times,” and still not have an answer to this question.
I don’t think even my Dad could know all those laws, but he’s got a good teacher to show him love - ME! Next to Jesus, a Sheltie is man’s best friend, very loyal, loving, obedient (except for when I took that meatloaf off of that counter…). If everyone could just be as loyal and remember that one little single commandment Jesus gave us - to love.  So now I just have one question: Is it a sin if I don’t love all the squirrels?

May 12:   Everyone knows that Shelties are most famous for herding animals, especially sheep.  Maybe that’s why I think the 23rd psalm is so cool.  This psalm is probably the most loved and known psalm of all for if the Lord is our Shepherd there should be nothing for want, correct?  However today there seem to be so many other shepherds out there.  The Catholic channel had the following rendition of this psalm that  asks the question “Who is your Shepherd?”

   The TV is my shepherd; I shall not want.
   It makes me to lie down on the sofa.
   It leads me away from the Faith.
   It destroys my soul.
   It leads me to the path of sex and violence for the advertiser’s sake.
   Even though I walk in the shadow of Christian responsibilities,
   There will be no interruption, for the TV is with me.
   Its cable and remote control, they comfort me.
   It prepares a commercial for me in the midst of my worldliness
   And anoints my head with secular humanism and consumerism.
   My covetousness runs over.
   Surely ignorance and laziness shall follow me all the days of my life,
   And I shall dwell in the house of wretchedness watching TV forever.      
So the squirrels all voted that we should just get rid of our televisions….   I’m thinking maybe they are on to something good!!                          

May 5:  My Dad keeps saying we’re still celebrating Easter when that was all of 5 weeks ago! I’m wondering how many people have forgotten Easter? How long do we celebrate it anyways? Well, using my Sheltie smarts, I thought I’d just tell you!!

The celebration of the Easter Vigil is the beginning of the season of Easter. The Vigil is the Christian feast par excellence, the feast of new birth, new beginnings, salvation renewed, and humanity restored to the Lord. While the Vigil marks the end of the paschal fast, the end of the celebration of Holy Week, and the end of repentance and conversion for which Lent prepared the community, it is much more a beginning. It is the beginning of a new season of grace and a time of joy and thanksgiving, for Easter is not one day or one solemnity—it is a fifty-day celebration, and the fifty days from Easter Sunday to Pentecost Sunday together comprise what the General Instruction terms "the great Sunday."

So, we have some 3 more weeks of singing our “Alleluias”! I know I bark (I mean sing) those Alleluias every time someone comes to the door! And as long as you’re not a squirrel, you are ALWAYS welcome to come to my house. Well, my Dad’s house too!

April 28:  Like April Fool’s Day, Easter is said to be a jokester’s holiday because God played the biggest joke of them all on Satan. When Satan thought he had overcome the Kingdom, God raised Jesus from the dead and God’s reign commenced for all time. So, mindful of God’s own sense of humor, I’m sharing some of my own Sheltie humor – hoping it brings a smile to your face this week and through Easter! So:

  What is a dentist’s favorite hymn? “Crown Him with Many Crowns!”
  What’s a salesman’s favorite scripture passage? “The Great Commission!”
  Where was Solomon’s temple located? “On the side of his head!”
  How does Moses make his coffee? “Hebrews it.”
  Who was the smartest man in the Bible? “Abraham. He knew a Lot.”
  What kind of man was Boaz before he married? Ruthless
  Why did the hawk sit on the church’s steeple? “It was a bird of pray!”
  Which servant of God was the worst lawbreaker in the bible? “Moses. He broke all 10 commandments!”
  What car make did the Apostles drive? “Honda… because the apostles were all in one Accord!” 
  What’s a missionary’s favorite kind of car?  "A convertible!”

HA HA HA HA HA HA HA! Isn’t God just the funniest?! I even had the squirrels rolling over in their nuts laughing at the above – I hope you enjoyed them and are still in enjoying this most awesome season of the year: EASTER! ALLELUIA!!!!

For more of Maggie's musings, see our online bulletin archives.  Maggie's column appears on page 3