Wednesday, December 3, 2008

I want to see Jesus

I want to see Jesus

I want to see Jesus
Though it's hard to wait in line
But, I'll keep waiting
'Til He says "It's time."

Oh, what a Savior
What love divine
Oh, what joy and peace
To know this love is mine

Though all the treasures
On Earth I can find,
None of them will matter
When Jesus says, "It's time"

Oh, what a Savior
What love divine
Oh, what joy and peace
To know this love is mine

Even a mansion
Waiting on the other side
All that seems small
Because Jesus is mine

Oh, what a Savior
What love divine
Oh, what joy and peace
To know this love is mine

from the "Oops..." file

Zoo solves mystery of celibate polar bears

TOKYO, Japan (CNN) -- Puzzled zookeepers in northern Japan have discovered the reason why their attempts to mate two polar bears kept failing: Both are female.

The municipal zoo in the city of Kushiro in Hokkaido brought in a polar bear cub three years ago. They named it Tsuyoshi, after the popular baseball outfielder Tsuyoshi Shinjo, and waited until it reached reproductive age.

In June, the zoo introduced Tsuyoshi to its resident bear, an 11-year-old female named Kurumi, and waited for sparks to fly.

But much to the disappointment of zookeepers, Tsuyoshi never made any amorous advances toward Kurumi.

Earlier this month, zookeepers put Tsuyoshi under anesthesia to get to the bottom of the matter. That's when they made their discovery: Tsuyoshi is a female.

Still, the Kushiro zoo plans to keep Tsuyoshi because he -- or rather, she -- has become immensely popular with visitors.

"I have rather mixed feelings, given the need for breeding, but Tsuyoshi is an idol for Kushiro," Yoshio Yamaguchi, head of the Kushiro zoo, told Japan's Kyodo news agency.

Tsuyoshi will even keep her name.

"We will not be changing it to 'Tsuyoko' since it is loved by citizens (by the current name)," Yamaguchi said.

"Ko" is a common suffix for a Japanese female name.

Meanwhile, Tsuyoshi's "brother," who was adopted by another zoo, has also turned out to be female, Kyodo reported.

St Louis alderman wants armed residents
St. Louis alderman encourages residents to get armed

ST. LOUIS - A city alderman frustrated with the police response to rising crime called Tuesday on residents to arm themselves to protect their lives and property.

Alderman Charles Quincy Troupe said police are ineffective, outnumbered or don't care about the increase in crime in his north St. Louis ward. St. Louis has had 157 homicides in 2008, 33 more than last year at this time.

"The community has to be ready to defend itself, because it's clear the economy is going to get worse, and criminals are getting more bold," Troupe, 72, said Tuesday.

Troupe said that when he and residents approached a district police commander last year, they were told "there was nothing he could do to protect us and the community ... that he didn't have the manpower."

Police did not immediately return requests for comment. Chief Dan Isom wrote Tuesday in a department blog that citizens arming themselves will lead to more danger, not less, he said. Neighborhood watch groups, and the hard work of helping to eradicate poverty and other social ills, are better crime-prevention tools, he said.

Mayor Francis Slay wrote in his blog Tuesday that some of the most violent crimes in Troupe's ward are committed with guns stolen from law-abiding citizens.

He said Troupe could do more good urging residents to cooperate with investigating police officers, lending support for activities for children, and lobbying legislators to increase funding for jobs training and economic development.

Troupe's reaction to the spike in homicides is understandable, but his idea is not likely to be effective, said University of Missouri-St. Louis criminologist Richard Rosenfeld.

"Much of the problem is free and easy access to guns," Rosenfeld said. "This hope that by putting guns in the right hands will have an influence on criminals is a false hope. There's no evidence for that."

In one of the latest violent crimes in St. Louis, a man was shot dead Monday and an unarmed potential suspect in the killing was shot by police. The 45-year-old suspect had put his hand inside his coat and two officers, fearing for their safety, shot him. He was in stable condition.


One guy has it right...

Si vi pacem, parabellum

Friday, October 17, 2008

unexpected praise note...

So, there I was, driving down the road on my way home from work. The time was around 7:50am. I was maybe 2 miles from the end of my journey. Wait! What's that brown shape that appeared from behind the building heading for the... Anti-lock brakes start pulsing! Swerve to the right!


I hit the back of the deer. Must have been around the left rear leg, or the back side of the deer. I went from about 40 to between 25 and 30. The deer spun around in a couple circles and fell down in the middle of the opposite lane. I pulled the truck off in the gravel. The guy in the truck behind me kept going. I looked in my mirror, and the deer had gotten up and ran off into the woods.

I pulled down the road a couple hundred feet (maybe that far) into a church parking lot. Didn't see any damage to my truck. Got my umbrella and walked back up the road, but didn't see any signs of the deer.

the problem with grace and mercy

Mercy (Middle English, from Anglo-French merci, from Medieval Latin merced-, merces, from Latin, "price paid, wages", from merc-, merx "merchandise") can refer both to compassionate behaviour on the part of those in power (e.g. mercy shown by a judge toward a convict) or on the part of a humanitarian third party (e.g. a mission of mercy aiming to treat war victims). Mercy is a term used to describe the leniency compassion shown by one person to another, or a request from one person to another to be shown such leniency or unwarranted compassion for a crime or wrongdoing. One of the basic virtues of chivalry, Christian ethics, Judaism, and Islam, it is also related to concepts of justice and morality in behaviour between people. In India, compassion is known as karuna.

In a legal sense, a defendant having been found guilty of a capital crime may ask for clemency from being executed.

To be "mercy", the behavior generally can not be compelled by outside forces. (A famous literary example is from The Merchant of Venice when Portia asks Shylock to show mercy. He asks, On what compulsion, must I? She responds The quality of mercy is not strained.)



In Christianity, divine grace refers to the sovereign favour of God for humankind — especially in regard to salvation — irrespective of actions ("deeds"), earned worth, or proven goodness.



The problem with grace and mercy, is that people take it for granted. It is shown to us once, and then we come to expect it. When it is finally taken away, we become indignant and upset.

Have we given any thought to why grace and mercy are extended to us?

Is it because of weakness? They're scared of us - they won't do anything. They're scared of being laughed at by higher-ups - they won't do anything. Those who are Christian aren't supposed to care what the world thinks of them. We have to remember that we don't get our value - our self-worth - from what the world thinks of us. We're not supposed to be of the world, because of this, the world will despise us. The world judges by its own skewed standards.

(I find it disgraceful that the media is trying to convince us that McCain has lost the election, so that their messiah can be elected.)

(McCain '08 The slightly lesser - but still lesser - of two evils)

Maybe grace and mercy are extended to us because we're being protected from something... God extends grace and mercy so we can escape Hell. Maybe non-Christians are just "paying it forward", or they just feel like it. (Can the unsaved truly know what grace and mercy are?) Maybe Christians are trying to practice what they preach...

One day it ends. The events involved with the End of Times occurs in Christian Theology. Procedures and protocols are trampled over in the human world.

Comments? Questions?

Thinly veiled message? I went to Walmart a while back and bought a pair of 13W boots. They felt good when I put them on. (The 12W I had to soften and stretch before wearing.) Now, my toes have the sides pushed out, and they fit really well. So... I wear them. Had they been 11W, I wouldn't wear them - because they wouldn't fit...

I write as much for myself as anyone else. The whole removing the plank thing... :)

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Jesus is the answer

I seem to have subconciously had the tune to "Sink the Bismark" by Johnny Horton going through my head as I wrote this...

"Jesus is the answer"

Lonely brother, weary sister
when your world comes crashing down
You can wear a smile
Instead of feeling down
He can take your heartache
and turn it upside down
Give your heart to Jesus
He'll lift you from the ground

Jesus is the answer
Yes, Jesus changes all
No matter what the problem
No matter great or small

I hear of all the troubles
that are in this world today
Trials and temptations
they never go away
But, when they try to take you,
you can stand and say
Jesus is the answer
and Jesus changes all

Jesus is the answer
Yes, Jesus changes all
No matter what the problem
No matter great or small

Now, when this life is over
and your work on Earth is done
Don't worry about vict'ry
For the battle has been won
Just give your heart to Jesus
and hear "Welcome home, well done"
The devil is defeated
and Jesus Christ has won.

Jesus is the answer
Yes, Jesus changes all
No matter what the problem
No matter great or small

Thursday, August 21, 2008

The Shinobi warriors

From a post at

CLIFTON, N.J. -- Clifton police said they arrested two men dressed liked ninjas and armed with Asian martial arts weapons who said they were sending a warning to drug users.

Calling themselves "Shinobi warriors," the men wore black SWAT-type vests and carried knives, throwing stars, swords, nunchucks and a bow and arrows.

After being arrested early Wednesday in a car on Route 46, the men said they were delivering warning letters to drug dealers and drug users urging them to stop their "impure" activities.

The letters said those who persisted would be stopped with "justified yet, merciful force."

Twenty-year-old Tadeusz Tertkiewicz and 19-year-old Jesse Trojaniak are charged with weapons possession. Tertkiewicz is also charged with harassment for a letter left for an ex-girlfriend.

Trojaniak's father tells The Associated Press his son is "not a maniac" and was only trying to help a friend.

Thursday, August 7, 2008

Sunday school, sermon, and camp

A month or so ago, I wrote on the chalkboard for Sunday School, “Obedience should be our first priority.” Since you are reading this electronically, you are spared from the “wonderful” sounds of the really bad chalk scratching across the board… J


(I was hoping to find the file containing the following, so I wouldn’t have to retype it. But, I couldn’t. Those of you who where there may realize that there is more text here than what I spoke. Some of it, I couldn’t say without going through a box of tissues.)

The following is a sermon that I spoke on July 16, 2008, a week before we left for Youth Camp.

I have one verse and several pages of notes.

Psalm 23 verse four states: Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil: for thou art with me; thy rod and thy staff they comfort me.

Now, I will go through the verse word by word.


“Yea, though I”

The valley of death isn’t something that we like walking through, or that we really want to walk through. We must accept the fact that it is something we must walk through from time to time. It is a natural part of life. No one can walk through that physical valley for us. Jesus has already conquered the spiritual valley of death.



As we go through the valley, we walk in the shadow, so things may be hard to see at times. We may wonder why things happen the way they do, among a multitude of other questions. So, as we go through the valley, we must walk. If we run, we might trip and fall. Though the valley seems long and the road hard to travel, we must continue on. Don’t stop and set up camp – it’s not a good place.



The word “through” implies that something has another side, or an end. If I said I was going to walk through the church, you would assume that I would arrive at the other end.



Death is not usually a mountaintop experience. You don’t often say, “ Experiencing death made me feel so good, I wish I could experience it all the time.” However, valleys are usually located between two mountains.

There is hope. We do not weep like those who have no hope.

1 Thessalonians 4

13But I would not have you to be ignorant, brethren, concerning them which are asleep, that ye sorrow not, even as others which have no hope.

14For if we believe that Jesus died and rose again, even so them also which sleep in Jesus will God bring with him.

15For this we say unto you by the word of the Lord, that we which are alive and remain unto the coming of the Lord shall not prevent them which are asleep.

16For the Lord himself shall descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the archangel, and with the trump of God: and the dead in Christ shall rise first:

17Then we which are alive and remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds, to meet the Lord in the air: and so shall we ever be with the Lord.

18Wherefore comfort one another with these words.



A shadow is a darker than normal spot. It happens when a light shines on an object. If there is no light, then you have total darkness. A shadow is just somewhere the light hasn’t reached yet.



There are many verses that deal with the topic of death. Here are a couple of the ones I like.

1 Corinthians 15

54So when this corruptible shall have put on incorruption, and this mortal shall have put on immortality, then shall be brought to pass the saying that is written, Death is swallowed up in victory.

55O death, where is thy sting? O grave, where is thy victory?

56The sting of death is sin; and the strength of sin is the law.

57But thanks be to God, which giveth us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ.

58Therefore, my beloved brethren, be ye stedfast, unmoveable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, forasmuch as ye know that your labour is not in vain in the Lord.


Colossians 2

13And you, being dead in your sins and the uncircumcision of your flesh, hath he quickened together with him, having forgiven you all trespasses;

14Blotting out the handwriting of ordinances that was against us, which was contrary to us, and took it out of the way, nailing it to his cross;

15And having spoiled principalities and powers, he made a shew of them openly, triumphing over them in it.

Being 30, you may wonder just how much I would know about death. My Dad’s Dad passed away in 1981 when I was 4. My Dad’s Mom passed away in September 1994 – I graduated from High School the following May. My Mom’s Dad passed away in January 1997. Fifteen or so pets are gone from cancer, heart attack, MIA, trauma, and other reasons. One of the kittens died from accidental dog-inflicted trauma February 1997.

September 2004, I sat in the backyard holding Tyson the dog in my arms as he bled.

February 2008, I drove my aunt to the vet to have Molly euthanized. My uncle couldn’t go. I went in his place – it doesn’t make me better than him or worse than him, it just puts me a half-step outside the emotions. I went out that day hoping to ride along. I hold no hard feelings whatsoever – I’d do it again in a heartbeat, if necessary.



Despite what we feel, those who are in Christ have no reason to fear.

2 Timothy 1

7For God hath not given us the spirit of fear; but of power, and of love, and of a sound mind.

1 John 4

18There is no fear in love; but perfect love casteth out fear: because fear hath torment. He that feareth is not made perfect in love.

Psalm 56

11In God have I put my trust: I will not be afraid what man can do unto me.


“No Evil”

Matthew 10

28And fear not them which kill the body, but are not able to kill the soul: but rather fear him which is able to destroy both soul and body in hell.

Matthew 4

10Then saith Jesus unto him, Get thee hence, Satan: for it is written, Thou shalt worship the Lord thy God, and him only shalt thou serve.

11Then the devil leaveth him, and, behold, angels came and ministered unto him.

Romans 12

19Dearly beloved, avenge not yourselves, but rather give place unto wrath: for it is written, Vengeance is mine; I will repay, saith the Lord.

20Therefore if thine enemy hunger, feed him; if he thirst, give him drink: for in so doing thou shalt heap coals of fire on his head.

21Be not overcome of evil, but overcome evil with good.


“Thy rod and Thy staff, they comfort me”

Psalm 125

1They that trust in the LORD shall be as mount Zion, which cannot be removed, but abideth for ever.

2As the mountains are round about Jerusalem, so the LORD is round about his people from henceforth even for ever.

3For the rod of the wicked shall not rest upon the lot of the righteous; lest the righteous put forth their hands unto iniquity.

4Do good, O LORD, unto those that be good, and to them that are upright in their hearts.

5As for such as turn aside unto their crooked ways, the LORD shall lead them forth with the workers of iniquity: but peace shall be upon Israel.

Psalm 56

2Mine enemies would daily swallow me up: for they be many that fight against me, O thou most High.

3What time I am afraid, I will trust in thee.

4In God I will praise his word, in God I have put my trust; I will not fear what flesh can do unto me.

Psalm 44

1We have heard with our ears, O God, our fathers have told us, what work thou didst in their days, in the times of old.

2How thou didst drive out the heathen with thy hand, and plantedst them; how thou didst afflict the people, and cast them out.

3For they got not the land in possession by their own sword, neither did their own arm save them: but thy right hand, and thine arm, and the light of thy countenance, because thou hadst a favour unto them.

4Thou art my King, O God: command deliverances for Jacob.

5Through thee will we push down our enemies: through thy name will we tread them under that rise up against us.

6For I will not trust in my bow, neither shall my sword save me.

7But thou hast saved us from our enemies, and hast put them to shame that hated us.

8In God we boast all the day long, and praise thy name for ever. Selah.


There are other valleys that people travel, also. Drug addiction, alcoholism, and others run rampant in our society.


To get through the valleys of life

2 Corinthians 12

6For though I would desire to glory, I shall not be a fool; for I will say the truth: but now I forbear, lest any man should think of me above that which he seeth me to be, or that he heareth of me.

7And lest I should be exalted above measure through the abundance of the revelations, there was given to me a thorn in the flesh, the messenger of Satan to buffet me, lest I should be exalted above measure.

8For this thing I besought the Lord thrice, that it might depart from me.

9And he said unto me, My grace is sufficient for thee: for my strength is made perfect in weakness. Most gladly therefore will I rather glory in my infirmities, that the power of Christ may rest upon me.

10Therefore I take pleasure in infirmities, in reproaches, in necessities, in persecutions, in distresses for Christ's sake: for when I am weak, then am I strong.

Hebrews 4

7Again, he limiteth a certain day, saying in David, To day, after so long a time; as it is said, To day if ye will hear his voice, harden not your hearts.

8For if Jesus had given them rest, then would he not afterward have spoken of another day.

9There remaineth therefore a rest to the people of God.

10For he that is entered into his rest, he also hath ceased from his own works, as God did from his.

11Let us labour therefore to enter into that rest, lest any man fall after the same example of unbelief.


Lessons learned

  1. Sometimes you have to do things regardless of personal consequences (like how sad you feel). Sometimes the consequences of NOT doing them outweigh the consequences of doing them.
  2. Saying goodbye to an animal that you care about, knowing that you may never see them again here on earth, is very hard. It’s even harder with people, but we never know when our time will be up. The human body is very fragile. You could slide off a roof, and into eternity. Car wrecks happen everyday. Rev. Mark McCalla went to the range after a meeting, and was found dead later after he had been robbed.
  3. And now I'm glad I didn't know
    The way it all would end the way it all would go
    … I could have missed the pain
    But I'd of had to miss the dance

“The Dance” – Garth Brooks

How foolish would that be?

  1. It’s hard, knowing that all you can do and have done isn’t enough. Even the best work of human doctors or vets isn’t enough sometimes.

A blog article hit me when I read it. “Collateral damage is inevitable. Sometimes in the midst of it I wonder why I fight at all. Arriving someplace only to find blood and loss, and seeing a form, thinking perhaps a survivor, and finding only blood and emptiness. Fire and rescue having performed futile efforts to revive that which is gone, and I realize that sometimes another’s life is not ours to save. Sometimes we have to let it slip quietly over the vale. And walk away.

  1. Time is getting shorter everyday. The end gets closer everyday.

One day, everyone will stand before God and give an account of their lives. Some will enter into Heaven. Some won’t. Everything they have done in life will not be enough. What a sad day it will be for those people. To realize that all they had to do was accept Jesus and repent, but that the time has passed.

If I could, I would take your place and get you saved. If there was something I could do, I would do it. Hopefully, my life has illustrated that. But, I can’t do it for you. I can’t walk through the valley of death for you, but if you’ll let me, I’ll walk with you.

Each person will be held responsible for their own actions. I can’t get you into Heaven. If I could say, “I know ___________, they’re alright”, I would. My righteousness is as filthy rags. You’ll have to depend on Jesus to say, “I know ________, he/she is in My Book.”

There is someone who can. Jesus died for our sins, so that we can enter into Heaven.


Then, came the scary part for me. (My emotions were starting to come out when I got to this part.)

After our last revival at church, at had to go to Fairmont to work one night. I sang along with the song in my truck, as I was driving. When the song was over, I thought, “Lord, I need to stop at Walmart. If the CD with that song is there, I’ll buy it and sing it sometime at church.” As I was looking at the CD at Walmart, I noticed it wasn’t the radio version and set it back down. A few feet down the aisle, I turned around and picked it up to buy it. I said I would sing it, so I have to sing it.

AJ pushed the play button, and I sang it.

Yes, you read that right. I sang a song.

Third Day - Cry Out To Jesus
From the album Wherever You Are

To everyone who's lost someone they love
Long before it was their time
You feel like the days you had were not enough
when you said goodbye

And to all of the people with burdens and pains
Keeping you back from your life
You believe that there's nothing and there is no one
Who can make it right

There is hope for the helpless
Rest for the weary
Love for the broken heart
There is grace and forgiveness
Mercy and healing
He'll meet you wherever you are
Cry out to Jesus, Cry out to Jesus

For the marriage that's struggling just to hang on
They’ve lost all of their faith in love
They've done all they can to make it right again
Still it's not enough

For the ones who can't break the addictions and chains
You try to give up but you come back again
Just remember that you're not alone in your shame
And your suffering


When you’re lonely
And it feels like the whole world is falling on you
You just reach out, you just cry out to Jesus
Cry to Jesus

To the widow who suffers from being alone
Wiping the tears from her eyes
For the children around the world without a home
Say a prayer tonight



After the song ended, amid the silence, I asked Mitch to close in prayer.


The next Sunday we left for camp at Glenville.

I will be the first to say that the Spirit of God isn’t limited to showing up just at camp. The Spirit can show up anywhere, but if you weren’t at camp you missed a move of the Spirit. In spite of (because of?) the injuries (attacks) that occurred, the Spirit of God moved. ( Note: Attacks can have two effects. They’ll either drive people apart, or they’ll draw people so close together that nothing can come between them.)

To those from camp:

Don’t let the flame that was started die out. Fan the flame with God’s Word.

Remain obedient. Don’t let fear rob you of a blessing.

There is a saying that “fear never arrives”. It will either not come, or if it does, you’ll be too busy dealing with it to worry.

To whom it may concern:

At campfire (this year and last), I sat on the outer ring. In life, I tend to stay on the outer ring. It’s not that I don’t want to talk to people or be with them. Bad things usually start on the outside and try to work their way to the inside. I would try to stop them, or at least slow them down (be a speedbump?). It is nice to come in from the cold.

In Christ Alone
First Line: In Christ alone my hope is found

"In Christ Alone"
Words and Music by Keith Getty & Stuart Townend
Copyright © 2001 Kingsway Thankyou Music

In Christ alone my hope is found;
He is my light, my strength, my song;
This cornerstone, this solid ground,
Firm through the fiercest drought and storm.
What heights of love, what depths of peace,
When fears are stilled, when strivings cease!
My comforter, my all in all—
Here in the love of Christ I stand.

In Christ alone, Who took on flesh,
Fullness of God in helpless babe!
This gift of love and righteousness,
Scorned by the ones He came to save.
Till on that cross as Jesus died,
The wrath of God was satisfied;
For ev'ry sin on Him was laid—
Here in the death of Christ I live.

There in the ground His body lay,
Light of the world by darkness slain;
Then bursting forth in glorious day,
Up from the grave He rose again!
And as He stands in victory,
Sin's curse has lost its grip on me;
For I am His and He is mine—
Bought with the precious blood of Christ.

No guilt in life, no fear in death—
This is the pow'r of Christ in me;
From life's first cry to final breath,
Jesus commands my destiny.
No pow'r of hell, no scheme of man,
Can ever pluck me from His hand;
Till He returns or calls me home—
Here in the pow'r of Christ I'll stand.

Monday, August 4, 2008

"All that remains are memories" from The Road Warrior (Mad Max 2)

My life fades, my vision dims. All that remains are memories. I remember a time of chaos, ruined dreams, this wasted land. Most of all, I remember the man we called Max, the road warrior. To understand who he was we have to go back to the other time. When the world was powered by the black fuel, and the desert sprung great cities of pipe and steel. Gone now, swept away. For reasons long forgotten two mighty warrior tribes went to war and touched off a blaze which engulfed them all. Without fuel they were nothing. They'd built a house of straw. Suddenly their machines sputtered and stopped. Their leaders talked and talked and talked, but nothing could stem the avalanche. Their world crumbled. Cities exploded. A whirlwind of looting and a firestorm of fear. Men began to feed on men. On the roads it was a white-line nightmare. Only those mobile enough to scavenge, brutal enough to pillage would survive. The gangs took over the highways, waging war for a tank of juice. Good brave men were battered and smashed. Men like Max, who ruled the highways in the name of the law. Who became a lover, husband, father. And with the roar of an engine, he lost everything, his woman, his child, his world. He wandered out into the wasteland, and here he would learn, amid the dark wreckage, that the fire which burns in the heart of man, will endure. Hope survives.

Thursday, July 24, 2008

WV Blackberry Festival

The West Virginia Blackberry Festival is coming up next weekend.

Thursday, July 3, 2008

R.I.P. Reverend Mark McCalla

WAYNE, W.Va. (AP) - Authorities are investigating the death of a former Ohio minister whose body was found at a shooting range in the Beech Fork area.

The Rev. Mark McCalla's body was found Thursday morning. Wayne County Sheriff David Pennington says McCalla suffered a single shot to the head. Police say it's a homicide.

Before serving at Highlawn Presbyterian Church in Huntington, McCalla worked at churches in Columbus, Ohio, and Corry and Franklin, Pa.

McCalla's body was found about an hour after he served breakfast to a group of volunteers working to improve area housing for low-income residents.

Pennington says authorities are not sure if the 45-year-old went to the state park by himself.


Suspects, considered AWOL from the Army, have been arrested.By 700WLW News
Saturday, June 28, 2008

(Huntington, WV.) A Cincinnati man is one of two men that was arrested in the killing of a former Ohio minister. Both men were arrested in Columbus Friday night.

First-degree murder warrants were filed in Huntington, West Virginia against 22-year old Daniel Smith of Cincinnati, and 19-year old Stephen Wilson of Virginia in the shooting death of 48-year old Reverend Mark McCalla. Smith and Wilson are U.S. Army deserters, and had been stationed at Ft. Drum in New York, but the Army says they have been gone since May.

McCalla's body was found about 5-miles south of Huntington, WV. at a rifle range June 19th. His body was discovered an hour after he served breakfast to a group of volunteers working to improve housing for low-income residents. He had been shot in the head.


Highlawn Presbyterian Church members grieve for slain pastor
Jun 22, 2008 @ 06:09 PM

HUNTINGTON — Though no one wanted to talk about exactly what was said at Sunday’s service at Highlawn Presbyterian Church, it was evident that it was a prelude to what today’s funeral service will be like for their slain pastor, Mark McCalla.

The 11 a.m. service concluded at about 12:15 p.m., and people slowly filed out the doors. Many were still wiping away tears, while others embraced.

The service was led by Richard Wilson, the director of the Pastoral Counseling Center at Cabell Huntington Hospital, said church elder Charlie Woolcock. He also said that McCalla’s family has asked that he and church members hold comments from the media until after the funeral services.

Visitation to celebrate the pastor’s life was held at Chapman’s Mortuary in Huntington Sunday afternoon and evening. A service will be held in his honor at 2 p.m. today at Highlawn Presbyterian Church, 2814 Collis Ave. The Rev. Mike Duchaneau will lead the service.

McCalla was found dead of a gunshot to the head at the rifle range at Beech Fork State Park last Thursday morning. The Wayne County Sheriff’s Office is continuing to investigate what they’ve declared a homicide.


Two arrested in slaying of former minister
By The Associated Press

HUNTINGTON -- Two U.S. Army deserters charged in the killing of a West Virginia minister at a state park shooting range have been arrested in Ohio, police said.

Stephen C. Wilson, 19, of Cincinnati, and Daniel R. Smith, 22, of Newport News, Va., were arrested without incident Friday in Columbus, Ohio, said Sgt. Dana Norman of the Columbus Police Department.

First-degree murder warrants were filed in West Virginia against the men Friday in the death of the Rev. Mark McCalla, 48, who had worked at churches in Ohio and Franklin, Pa. McCalla had been working at Highlawn Presbyterian Church in Huntington. He was shot once in the head at close range and dragged about 20 yards, authorities said.

McCalla's body was found June 19 at the Beech Fork Lake Wildlife Management Area, about five miles south of Huntington. It was discovered about an hour after he served breakfast to a group of volunteers working to improve housing for low-income residents.

According to authorities and criminal complaints filed in Wayne County court, the two suspects told a fellow soldier they had shot and killed McCalla.

Smith and Wilson had been stationed at Fort Drum in New York, but the Army has listed them as deserters since May, authorities said. Base spokesman Randolph Murphy said they were in Fort Drum's 10th Mountain Division.

The men had been staying at a home near Huntington with a fellow soldier they served with at Fort Drum, according to criminal complaints. The home was searched Thursday, and police confiscated about a dozen firearms, among other items. The other soldier who lived at the home has not been charged.

Wayne County Sheriff David Pennington said police think McCalla was killed with his own gun, which they have not recovered.

"If any, the one solace that we can take from this is that these two will cause no other family to go through what we have over the past week,'' McCalla's stepson Alan Eargle said in a statement. "We are somewhat relieved, still bewildered, and just plain angry that we will never be able to understand the motive for such a heinous act.''

Wednesday, July 2, 2008

Fire and rescue having performed futile efforts to revive that which is gone, and I realize that sometimes anothers life is not ours to save. Sometimes we have to let it slip quietly over the vale. And walk away.

A principle and a gun

We were taught in school a way to remember the spelling for the word referring to school administration. "The principal is your pal."

"But Myrick foiled that plan. He saw the killer fleeing the campus and positioned himself to point a gun at the windshield. Woodham, seeing the gun pointed at his head, crashed the car. Myrick approached the killer and confronted him. "Here was this monster killing kids in my school, and the minute I put a gun to his head he was a kid again," Myrick said."


Myrick and his gun, no matter how one looks at it, saved lives. His actions saved the lives of waiting victims at a nearby junior high. He may have kept Woodham from shooting police, who would have arrived at the scene disoriented, without Myrick's home turf frame of reference. Arguably, Myrick and his gun even saved the life of the killer, who likely would have killed himself or been shot by SWAT cops after spilling more blood.

Although Myrick saved lives, beyond question, some treat him as a leper. After the shootings, and the relatively peaceful ending to something that could have made Columbine pale in comparison, Myrick was in exile. He'd held a gun to a student's head, and his colleagues simply couldn't accept that.

"Nobody wanted to dog me, but nobody wanted to side with me, either," Myrick says. "I felt like I was being betrayed by everybody."

And that was Mississippi. This summer he studied at Harvard, where he'd been awarded a prestigious education fellowship. That's when uppity intolerance and mass stupidity took on new meaning for Myrick. "Once people found out my story, I got a lot of dirty looks and strange stares," Myrick said. "A few people confronted me."

Myrick shouldn't feel bad. Only goofy losers gave Myrick funny looks, and such people never learn. Myrick's gun, and his ability and willingness to use it, saved lives plain and simple. Yet somehow, in the minds of the anti-intellectual gun control crowd, he's a bad man who did an immoral deed."


"Yes, you've likely never heard Joel Myrick's name as the mainstream media rarely reported how the massacre was stopped. Teachers are still not allowed to have guns. For, though by his actions he saved countless lives, prevented unfathomable grief in the eyes of the law, Joel Myrick is a criminal , for he violated the Federal Gun Free School Zones Act (18 US Code sect. 922(q)(1)(A)), which specifies, "It shall be unlawful for any individual knowingly to possess a firearm... at a place that the individual knows... is a school zone."

No guns for the teachers or administrators charged with teaching and protecting their students, not even locked up where they could perhaps reach them like Myrick did. Librarians are not allowed to have guns. If someone walks in and begins to shoot the patrons, the majority often children, they are instructed to "throw a book at them". Too many potential victims, too many sane, trained people not allowed to carry in certain public places."


Other famous gun free zones:

Columbine High School.
New York City pizza shop.
Pearl Mississippi High School.
Luby's Cafeteria.
The Amish school in Pennsylvania.
Virginia Tech University.


Obadiah 1
11.In the day that thou stoodest on the other side, in the day that the strangers carried away captive his forces, and foreigners entered into his gates, and cast lots upon Jerusalem, even thou wast as one of them. 12.But thou shouldest not have looked on the day of thy brother in the day that he became a stranger; neither shouldest thou have rejoiced over the children of Judah in the day of their destruction; neither shouldest thou have spoken proudly in the day of distress. 13.Thou shouldest not have entered into the gate of my people in the day of their calamity; yea, thou shouldest not have looked on their affliction in the day of their calamity, nor have laid hands on their substance in the day of their calamity; 14.Neither shouldest thou have stood in the crossway, to cut off those of his that did escape; neither shouldest thou have delivered up those of his that did remain in the day of distress.

Monday, June 30, 2008

Cougars, coyotes and bobcats, oh my...

Friday, June 27, 2008

Watch the video starting at 1:26 (from a movie)

Then, watch this one (from real life)

Wednesday, June 25, 2008

a couple Casting Crowns songs

Here I Go Again

Father, hear my prayer
I need the perfect words
Words that he will hear
And know they're straight from You
I don't know what to say
I only know it hurts
To see my only friend slowly fade away

So maybe this time
I'll speak the words of life
With Your fire in my eyes
But that old familiar fear is tearing at my words
What am I so afraid of?

Cause here I go again
Talkin 'bout the rain
And mulling over things that won't live past today
And as I dance around the truth
Time is not his friend
This might be my last chance to tell him
That You love Him
But here I go again, here I go again

Lord, You love him so, You gave Your only Son
If he will just believe; he will never die
But how then will he know what he has never heard
Lord he has never seen mirrored in my life

So maybe this time
I'll speak the words of life
With Your fire in my eyes
But that old familiar fear is tearing at my words
What am I so afraid of?

Cause here I go again
Talkin 'bout the rain
And mulling over things that won't live past today
And as I dance around the truth
Time is not his friend

This might be my last chance to tell him
That You love him
This might be my last chance to tell him
That You love him
You love him, You love him

What Am I so afraid
What am I so afraid
What am I so afraid of?

How then will he know
What he has never heard

Prayer for a friend

Lord, I lift my friend to You, I've done all that I know to do
I lift my friend to You
Complicated circumstances have clouded his view
Lord, I lift my friend up to You

I fear that I won't have the words that he needs to hear
I pray for Your wisdom, oh God, and a heart that's sincere
Lord, I lift my friend up to You

Lord, I lift my friend to You
My best friend in the world, I know he means much more to You
I want so much to help him, but this is something he has to do
And Lord, I lift my friend up to You

'cause there's a way that seems so right to him
But You know where that leads
He's becoming a puppet of the world, too blind to see the strings
Lord, I lift my friend up to You
My friend up to You

Lord, I lift my friend to You, I've done all that I know to do
I lift my friend to You

Will we be sleeping?

While you were sleeping
Casting Crowns

United States of America
Looks like another silent night
As we’re sung to sleep by philosophies
That save the trees and kill the children
And while we’re lying in the dark
There’s a shout heard ‘cross the eastern sky
For the Bridegroom has returned
And has carried His bride away in the night, in the night

America, what will we miss while we are sleeping
Will Jesus come again
And leave us slumbering where we lay
America, will we go down in history
As a nation with no room for its King
Will we be sleeping?
Will we be sleeping?

Fire and Rain - James Taylor

Just yesterday morning they let me know you were gone
Susanne the plans they made put an end to you
I walked out this morning and I wrote down this song
I just can't remember who to send it to

I've seen fire and I've seen rain
I've seen sunny days that I thought would never end
I've seen lonely times when I could not find a friend
But I always thought that I'd see you again

Won't you look down upon me, Jesus
You've got to help me make a stand
You've just got to see me through another day
My body's aching and my time is at hand
And I won't make it any other way

Oh, I've seen fire and I've seen rain
I've seen sunny days that I thought would never end
I've seen lonely times when I could not find a friend
But I always thought that I'd see you again

Been walking my mind to an easy time my back turned towards the sun
Lord knows when the cold wind blows it'll turn your head around
Well, there's hours of time on the telephone line to talk about things
to come
Sweet dreams and flying machines in pieces on the ground

Oh, I've seen fire and I've seen rain
I've seen sunny days that I thought would never end
I've seen lonely times when I could not find a friend
But I always thought that I'd see you, baby, one more time again, now

Thought I'd see you one more time again
There's just a few things coming my way this time around, now
Thought I'd see you, thought I'd see you fire and rain, now

Nevada style coyote hunting?

Tuesday, June 24, 2008

I think Shakespeare put it best...

"Like a tale told by an idiot. Full of sound and fury, signifying nothing."

A barrel shroud is not "the shoulder thing that goes up."

It is a magazine, not a clip.

It would not have kept "large capacity clips out of the hands of those who kill our law enforcement officers". It just keeps them out of the hands of law abiding citizens.

Wednesday, June 18, 2008

Coyote calls... no one answers...

Dinner time!
Varmint Al MP3 sounds
Nodak Outdoors Homemade E-caller
Nodak Outdoors making your own E- caller
Predator Masters wireless remote speaker MP3 caller
Predator calling sequences
Types of coyote calls
Howlers of heritage
How to call coyotes
Calling coyotes
Thomas Neuberger On Coyotes: How To Call And When To Shoot
- Kayser, Mark. "5 dastardly, deadly, and downright dirty tactics for calling winter coyotes". Field & Stream.
- Clancy, Gary. "The coyote crying game". Outdoor Life. Dec 1994 v194 n6 p60(4).
- Gese, Eric M. and Robert L. Ruff. "Howling by coyotes (canis latrans): variation among social classes, seasons, and pack sizes". National Wildlife Research Center. 1997.

Coyote fact sheets

Coyote Fact Sheets
Georgia DNR
West Virginia DNR Coyote Research
Internet Center for Wildlife Damage Management
Ohio DNR Coyote Card .pdf
Pennsylvania Game Commission Coyote info
Washington F&W - Coyotes
Cape Cod coyotes
Virginia F&W Coyote
Maryland Animal Bits - Coyote

General coyote

Shrub-Steppe Ecology Series Coyote info
The Coyote
Coyotes are like people
Overview of the canids
C. lupus tail positions picture
Gross (really) anatomy of the wolf
Skeleton - Ostaeology of the wolf
Coyote Skeleton
The body of a dog
Dog to Dog communication
- Young, Stanley P. and Edward A. Goldman. "The wolves of North America". Dover Publications.
- Kays, Roland W. and Don E. Wilson. Mammals of North America. Princeton University Press. p.230, 164
- Fox, M. W. "The wild canids - their systemics, behavioral ecology and evolution". Van Nostrand Reinhold Company. 1975
- Gambaryan, P.P. How mammals run anatomical adaptations. Halsted Press. 1974. p207-208, 244

Coyote reproduction and development

Reproduction and development
- does not mate for life, but may stay together for several years
- monestrous (breeds once per year)
- usually February
- 4 to 5 day period of estrus
- gestation is 58 to 65 days
- 5 to 7 pups
- birth in April or early May
-- blind, helpless
-- brownish-gray wooly fur
-- weigh 9 oz
-- gain 10.5 oz/week until weaning
- both car for young
-- male brings food for nursing female
- whelps
-- able to crawl when 2-3 days old
-- walk @ 8-10 days
-- eyes open by 2 weeks
-- venture outside 1 week later
-- parents provide partially digested food
-- weaning occurs @ 8-9 weeks
--- group abandons den
--- young taught to hunt
- family disbands in autumn
-- young disperse up to 120 miles from den
-- hunt alone from autumn to winter
-- may pair and breed (most wait until 2 years old)
- achieves adult weight around 9 months old
-- breed when a year old (2 years for wolves)
- close relatives of dogs - will mate with them
- better food supply = larger litter
- for rearing young
- brush covered slopes
- rocky ledges
- hollow logs
- may excavate own den or renovate abandoned woodchuch, fox or skunk den
- well concealed by brush
- have several entrances about 1' in diameter
- tunnels range from 5 to 30 feet and terminate at nest chamber
- nest chamber about 3 feet in diameter

Coyote behavior

- active throughout the year
- principally nocturnal - peak in early evening. May forage during daylight in summer
- hunt singly, in pairs, packs of 3 to 8
- travel single file - if pairs - along game trails and road cuts
- hunting alone - takes small mammals
- hunting in packs - may hunt deer of elk. Two or more may chase large animal 400m
- fastest canine - 40MPH
- leap 14 feet in the air
- holds tail between hind legs while running
- strong swimmer
- territorial
-- body postures
-- Facial expressions
-- scent marking
--- rocks, bushes, stumps, bases of trees. Defecates on small ridges and elevated sites along hunting trails. Scent gland on top of tail about 2" from base - rubs secretion on trees and bushes as individual recognition.
-- vocalizations
--- yip, yelp, howl, growl, bark, woof
--- Canine communications
- commonly rests in a concealed spot on brushy hillsides
- large carcass - will eat organs first and pick bones clean

Coyote mortality

Mortality causes
- humans, fleas, ticks, lice, chiggers, mange, tapeworms, roundworms, hookworms, whipworms, pinworms, heartworms, lungworms, flukes, spiny-headed worms, tularemia, canine distemper, rabies, Q fever, bubonic plague
- Canine pests and diseases
- 11 year old boy developed axillary bubonic plague and plague meningitis 3 days after skinning dead coyote near Albuquerque, New Mexico. Yersinia pestis in spleen and marrow risk is minimal

Coyote description

- long, narrow pointed nose
- erect, pointed ears
- round pupils that shine greenish-gold at night
- both sexes colored alike
- adult males slightly larger
- largest reside in northeast

- gray to yellow-gray pelage
- middorsal band of long black-tipped guard hairs
- bushy black-tipped tail
- head grizzled gray w/ rusty or yellowish tint along neck and sides
- throat, belly, back of ears, top of nose, legs, feet vary from orangish red to cinnamon
- molting begins in late spring and is completed in summer. Pelage is prime between early December and February

General coyote information

Coyote (barking dog)
Canis latrans
- Aztec Indian word (coyotle)
Also called: Eastern coyote, brush wolf, little wolf, prarie wolf, American jackal

Pennsylvania: canis latrans latrans

Length: 46"-54.6"
Tail: 12.7-15.8"
Weight: 25-50lbs

Population density: 1-2/mi(2)

Home range: 1976-19760 acres (5-10 square miles)

6-8 years wild
18 years captivity

Monday, June 16, 2008

Playing God?

Just because you can do something, doesn't mean you should.

On a side note: Hens teeth may not be quite so rare anymore...