Tag Archives: #Peace

Table Rock – A Peaceful Get-a-way, Winter or Summer

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If you love the outdoors, are seeking a peaceful, out of the way vacation with lots of options, Table Rock Resort in Pickens, South Carolina is the place for you.
Some background:  Beautifully located four miles SW of Table Rock State Park on the Cherokee Foothills Scenic Highway (SC Hwy 11) the drive there from Low Country at the beach changes majestically with the high, blue-hue (it actually is!) thrilling mountainous roller-coaster roads up to the sky. The Cherokees called these heights the “Great Blue Hills of God.” Following an ancient Cherokee path, this beautiful two-lane road arcs through peach orchards and villages, past Cowpens National Battlefield and over Lake Keowee.

The Blue Ridge contains the highest mountains in eastern North America. About 125 peaks exceed 5,000 feet (1,500 m) in elevation The highest peak in the Blue Ridge (and in the entire Appalachian chain) is Mt. Mitchell in North Carolina at 6,684 feet (2,037 m). There are 39 peaks in North Carolina and Tennessee higher than 6,000 feet (1,800 m); by comparison, only New Hampshire’s Mt. Washington rises above 6,000 feet (1,800 m) in the northern portion of the Appalachian chain.

The Blue Ridge Parkway runs 469 miles (755 km) along crests of the Southern Appalachians and links two national parks: Shenandoah and Great Smoky Mountains. In many places along the parkway, there are metamorphic rocks (gneiss) with folded bands of light-and dark-colored minerals, which sometimes resemble a marble pound cake.

Arriving at our destination, the 18-Hole Scenic Golf course overlooking The Rock at Jocassee surrounded by the Blue Ride mountains, the first thing you see is the equestrian center. Guests abound atop trail horses, exploring the scenery and many nearby waterfalls.

Along with golf, there are tennis courts, fishing, boating and hiking, a swimming pool (open Memorial Day to Labor Day and just good old plain fresh air and beautiful scenery plus skiing in the winter.

In our two-story 2-bedroom unit equipped with all modern conveniences and a fireplace, we found a pamphlet entitled “A Homeowner’s Guide Living with Bears”. [Okay.]  Natural Resources officials say the number of black bears in South Carolina has gotten so large that the animals are boldly looking for food in residential areas. Black bears can get up to 600 pounds. [Mouth open on that one.] If one does approach you, the booklet tells you the ‘thing to do’ is make yourself look as large as you can possibly can by waving your arms. It’s difficult to look ‘that big’ if you are only 5’2″, so I looked over my shoulder a lot. The locals told us that they haven’t seen a bear in the resort area for over 12 years, and we didn’t see one either. The guys were disappointed somewhat.

Cell phones do not work in these elevated areas, so bring a phone card. Also, the Wi-Fi works in the club house, but not in the rooms. This was disappointing at first, but the blood pressure drop and serenity feeling overlooked the loss almost immediately. Accommodations are immaculate.

The restaurant at the Club House was better than anything locally (within 10 miles) and we dined there every night on fresh caught trout, crab cakes roasted stuff chicken, and wonderfully fresh garden salads, all cooked in gourmet style. Veggies, ice cream and bread were all fresh and delicious. We enjoyed visiting with the chef, and owners each night after dinner and they gave us many insights as what to see and where to go.

It was unanimously agreed among our group that the locals in neighboring (10 miles or less) local towns were the friendliest people we’ve ever met. Down-to-earth, congenial, happy, and helpful, from the waitresses to the owners to the other guests. This is a Mayberry, NC-like town seen on the Andy Griffith Show. We visited homegrown honeybee stores, the largest flea market ever on Wednesdays, and Greenville, the third largest city in the state of SC, is only 20 miles away – one half hour if you have to have city.

We took a couple of day trips: one to Biltmore, American’s Largest Home in Asheville, NC – about an hour and a half ride – 70 miles away. You can spend the whole day there and have lunch at their extraordinary buffet amidst an outside garden. And wine tasted at the Biltmore winery.

We also visited the Cherokee Reservation’s Harrah’s Casino – about a two and a half hour ride from the resort. No one won anything, but it was a hoot.

One very pleasurable lunch – just up the road a couple of miles from the resort is the Victoria Valley Vineyards. Overlooking a Tuscany Terrain look-alike with terraced vineyards, we enjoyed a Bistro lunch after another delicious wine-tasting and wine tour. This beautiful facility, known for its scenery and good food, is a popular venue for weddings, receptions, or any kind of celebration. The day we lunched there, the only other group was a small wedding party of about 6 people.
I brought many books with me – and I never read one. The entire time was pleasurable, relaxing, fun and memorable. A great place to go with a golf group, a family, or as a couple. If you like solitude, even alone. There are people all around in the middle of the mountains and the bears know their place;  they never visited.
Table Rock Resort in the Foothills of the Blue Ridge Mountains, South Carolina 144 Sliding Rock Road, Pickens, SC 29671,
864-878-3942

WHY DID THE HOLOCAUST HAPPEN?

 

If you have never visited the Holocaust Museum in Washington, D.C., you have not seen first-hand how prejudice and discrimination can escalate into something horrific and evil.

Once you are inside, it is a somber mood, as the crowds make their way through the authentic film footage, artifacts, photographs and documents that mirror what life was like in pre-war Europe, the Nazi move toward the “Final Solution” and life after the Holocaust. This is not for the faint hearted. You can spend two to three hours in this self-guided exhibition and it is recommended for visitors 11 years of age and older.

There are different estimates of deaths during the Holocaust because not only did the national borders during the Holocaust change, but many of the victims simply were never recorded. In the eastern European regions, millions of Poles — Jews and Catholics alike — were murdered by the Secret Service and police personnel in the field or in killing centers such as Auschwitz-Birkenau and Treblinka. In the ideology of the Nazis, the Poles were considered an inferior “race.”

It is estimated that number of Jewish fatalities during the Holocaust is usually given as between 5.1 and 6 million victims.

It is estimated that between 5 and 5.5 million Polish civilians, including 3 million Polish Jews, died or were killed under Nazi occupation. Poland lost one-fifth of its population: three million of the dead were Polish Christians, predominantly Catholic, and the rest were Polish Jews.

Many people were killed trying to hide or help people escape concentration camps and executions.

Why? What was the Holocaust and why did it happen: The Holocaust is the state-sponsored systematic persecution and annihilation of European Jewry by Nazi Germany and its collaborators between 1933 and 1945. Jews were the primary victims — six million were murdered; Roma and Sinti (Gypsies), people with mental and physical disabilities, and Poles were also targeted for destruction or decimation for racial, ethnic, or national reasons. Millions more, including homosexuals, Jehovah’s Witnesses, Soviet prisoners of war, and political dissidents, also suffered grievous oppression and death under Nazi Germany. Ref: http://www.ushmm.org/research/library/faq/details.php?lang=en&topic=01#01

Does this boggle your mind as it does mine? All these people executed because of who they were and what they believed in? So how does peace start with You, and You, and You and You?

You can see above what happens when a people decide that they are going to annihilate people that don’t think, live, believe or act like they do. They were people, with families, with normal lives going about the business of making a living and loving and caring for their family. And because of discrimination, profiling, intolerance and persecution, innocent people like you and me were executed.  It can happen with a government that tries to think, guide and change you into how they want you to be for their end.

I don’t know the intricacies of what and how these seeds of discontent against others first materialized into what they did. Perhaps because people who were different from those in charge behaved differently, believed differently and acted differently.  Or perhaps the end product was the emergence of a possible super race and any abnormalities had to be exterminated.   We can’t ever let his happen again.   Is not our world leaning this way again?

Is not today’s world filled with people who are all very different; they behave differently, believe differently and act differently from how we do? Aren’t our all our countries a matrix of different countries, languages, religions, customs, lifestyles, and even countenances different from one another?

It would be easy to point out the differences, make fun of the language or customs and shun their religion and lifestyles. It could be just as easy to accept and respect people for who they are and learn from their diversity of ideas and values.

We are all different from different worlds and walks of life, but there is one sameness we all have. We are all created by God and made in His likeness. There is no discrimination in His eyes; He loves each and every one of us the same. We are all equal, all races, all creeds, all people, men and women.

Peace can start with you by treating everyone as your equal. There are no class, caste, or standards of living in God’s eyes.

There are websites with Q&A relating to the Holocaust http://www.ushmm.org/research/library/faq/details.php?lang=en&topic=03#02

Marie Coppola  Revised February 2017© 

Do you have a Prayer Box?


 

Life can sometimes be challenging and let’s face it, downright stressful. Along with the daily news of the nations’ problems and economy, there are friends and family who are having problems with foreclosures and changes in their lives if they have moved in with relatives after losing their homes.

When tempers and frustrations are at an all-time high; families in distress may have strained relationships and some collapse. Along with this, there are friends, family and acquaintances who are dealing with sickness, separation, physical and/or mental challenges. Some of them have lost family members through death or have other loss issues.

Sometimes, the best way to help a friend is to just listen to them. They may not want advice but just need an ear to vent, express grief or frustrations or seek help for assistance. Hurting folks deal with all these issues in different ways – exercise or work more, take medications, drink more or turn to their faith.

How do you, the listener, deal with the sadness, anger or problems of people you care about and are emotionally involved with? Or it may be someone whom you meet fleetingly in a doctor’s office or at church. After you listen to their different stories, you can offer a hug or some uplifting comment. You could also tell them that you will pray for them or the person in their lives who is having difficulty, sick or at a crosssroads.

Or you could tell them that you will place their problem, situation or requests in the Prayer Box.

Our faith-sharing group meets during Advent and Lent each year. At these meetings, we discuss scripture and gospel readings. At one of these meetings, the facilitator brought in a box, handed out a small notepaper and pencil & invited all to write down a prayer for someone they know who is in need of a prayer. We did not need to write the whole problem, “God already knows what the problem is.”  The prayers are placed in the covered box, and are prayed for at each meeting.   No one ever reads the contents.

Matthew 18:20 says, “For where two or three come together in my name, there am I with them.”   Prayer is as powerful for the recipient as well as the giver.

If you are a sensitive person who internalizes the sadness and anxiety of friends who confide in you, I suggest you prepare a Prayer Box for them.  It does not have to be fancy; mine is a plain gift box with a cover and I wrote the words “Prayer Box” on it.   I keep it on my dresser and have many prayer requests in it. People who have asked  me to include their requests in it – I just need their name and write ‘special intention’ or a simple word of the request .

I send up prayers for requests in the box during the day and at bedtime.  I touch the box and pray each night that God answers all the prayers in the box and for peace and freedom from anxiety.   If it is not God’s Will to answer a prayer and He has something else in mind for that person, I pray that they are given peace, strength & understanding.

The Prayer Box is beneficial to the requestor as it gives them a support – a hope – an action. It is also beneficial for the person praying for them. It relieves the internal distress you may feel for others and gives it over and up to God, who can act on the request according to His Will.  It is the best help you can give them. I can attest that many miracles and positive results have resulted from praying over the Prayer Box.

© Marie Coppola July 2013

Father~Jesus~Love~Peace~The Holy Spirit

Pastor Bob delivered a beautiful homily at church today;  I will try to recreate the message he shared with us.

He reflected on the past three Sundays Readings and Gospels which give the accounts of Jesus’ visits with his disciples after his resurrection and before his ascension into Heaven.

He  noted that Jesus did not go into the teachings of his past three year’ ministry with his disciples, reviewing with them all the facets of the faith he spoke through his Father. It would seem he would warn them or remind them of parables addressing the continual harassment by the scribes and Pharisees who constantly badgered him.

Instead, Jesus spoke simply to the disciples of the Father, his Love , Peace and the Holy Spirit.  Twice Jesus told them, “If you love me, you will ‘keep’ my words” and the Father will reward that person by making his home with them.

When we become like Christ, we automatically do the right thing.

Then he told the disciples that the Holy Spirit would dwell within them and would enable them to remember the words and incidences of Jesus and to record them for future posterity. The promised Holy Spirit would enable the apostles to discern the truth, clarify the doctrine and encourage the new believers in faith, the Gentiles.

The priest explained how in the First Reading, some were teaching that ‘unless you are circumcised according to the custom of Moses, you cannot be saved.” (Acts 15: 1-2, 22-29.) They were preaching from their previous teachings.  Even Paul at one time believed that all new believers should convert to Judaism before they became Christians, relying on previous teachings.  With aid of the Holy Spirit, Paul and Barnabas sent men out to maintain Jesus’ doctrinal purity.

Today is the same: we are guided by the Holy Spirit to maintain doctrinal purity by the Magisterium, the Teaching Authority of the Church. It consists of the Pope and Bishops. Christ promised to protect the teaching of the Church: “He who hears you, hears me; he who rejects you, rejects me, he who rejects me, rejects Him who sent me”. (Luke 10.16)

In the Gospel Reading today (John 14:23-29) Jesus tells us,  “If a man loves me, he will keep my word, and my Father will love him, and we will come to him and make our home with him.   He who does not love me does not keep my words; and the word which you hear is not mine, but the Father’s who sent me.”

“These things I have spoken to you, while I am still with you.  But the Counselor, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name, he will teach you all things, and bring to your remembrance all that I have said to you.   Peace I leave with you; my peace I give to you, not as the world gives do I give to you.   Let not your hearts be troubled, neither let them be afraid.”

Simple faith – simple words.  Do not add or take away from them ~ This is our faith:

Father ~ Jesus ~  Love ~ Peace ~ The Holy Spirit

Have a blessed week.

Marie Coppola

Ref: http://emmausjourney.org/reflecting