Tag Archives: current-events

Church of the Shipwreck of Saint Paul – Valletta, Malta

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On a recent European tour, we spent eight glorious days in the beautiful country of Malta.  It was an amazing journey and we found the Maltese people and culture to be so very wonderful.  In anticipation of a glorious time, we booked an apartment in the oldest part of Valletta, here is the view from our windows……yes,  stunning 180 degree panoramic sea-views of Marsamxett Harbor and Manoel Island, all the way out to the open Mediterranean sea!!!

Perfect for a leisurely dinner with beautiful Maltese wine….

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While searching for places to stay, I found this photo and decided I had found the perfect place!!

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The Tin Man has many stories to tell about the travels in Malta; however, let’s begin with the Church of the Ship Wreck of Saint Paul…..

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It all started with a shipwreck, as told in the book of Acts, about 60 AD while the apostle Paul was en route to Rome.

Boarding an Alexandrian grain freighter on the isle of Crete, a fierce Nor’easter blew the ship off course.

The tiny ship was tossed, it looked like all was lost.

(you should now be hearing the theme from Gilligan’s Island in your head)

The Books of Acts describes the scene as such:

“On the fourteenth night, they were still being driven across the Adriatic sea when the sailors sensed land approaching.   They took soundings and found that the land was 120 feet deep.   A short time later they took soundings again and found that it was 90 feet deep.   Fearing that we would be dashed against the rocks, the sailors dropped four anchors from the stern, and prayed for daylight,”

When daylight came, they did not recognize the land.   But they saw a bay with a sandy beach, where they decided to run the ship aground if they could.   Cutting loose the anchors, they left them in the sea,”

The anchors were discovered by Ray Ciancio in the 1960’s and are on display at the National Maritime Museum

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A Shipwreck’s Impact

With the storm still raging, the ship struck a sandbar, and began to break apart. With the vessel and her cargo a total loss, the nearly 300 men on board swam for their lives.   Miraculously, everyone survived.

Once safely on shore, we found out that the island was called Malta,” the story reveals.

And so began a Christian influence in Malta that has continued down through the centuries.   Today, it is the most religious nation in Europe — 98 percent of its citizens are members of the Catholic Church.

Saint Paul is memorialized throughout the island, no where more than in Saint Paul’s bay,   today tourists come to the Church of the Shipwreck of Saint Paul to see relics of the Saint who was cast ashore on this marvelous island nation….

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While we had planned to visit this church during our stay in Valletta, on this particular day we were in search of Piadina Caffe, the number 2 rated restaurant in Valletta…

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This wonderful Café is owned and operated by a wonderful woman named, Giada….

There are only 3 chairs inside the tiny place and guests are invited to stand or sit on the sidewalk outside

Here is the interior of the entire place…..

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Delightful and Fresh Creations

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We had such a delightful time and returned every chance we had to this very bohemian culinary paradise.

Click HERE to read my review…….

To our delight, we sat on the sidewalk and there directly in front of us was the entrance to the

Church of the Shipwreck of Saint Paul!!

When we finished our delightful luncheon we stepped across the street to explore the church…..

The church hosts fine artistic works, including the magnificent altarpiece by Matteo Perez d’Aleccio

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The Collegiate Parish Church of St Paul’s Shipwreck, also known as simply the Church of St Paul’s Shipwreck, is a Roman Catholic parish church and is one of Valletta’s oldest churches.

 St Paul is considered to be the spiritual father of the Maltese.   His shipwreck is popularly considered as the greatest event in the nation’s history.   For this reason, St Paul’s Collegiate Church is one of the most important in Malta.

The church is incredibly large compared to its humble entrance across from the café.  The inside is packed with all sorts of marvelous art and sculpture.

Here is part of the column on which the saint was beheaded in Rome; you see, he lost his appeal to Caesar and was executed, but his Roman citizenship spared him crucifixion, granting him a more humane beheading instead.

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The choir and dome of Lorenzo Gafà, the paintings by Attilio Palombi, and Giuseppe Calì

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The wooden statue of Paul the Apostle was carved in 1657 by Melchiorre Cafà, the brother of Lorenzo Gafa  who remodeled the church in 1680

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 The statue is paraded through the streets of Valletta on the feast day of St Paul’s Shipwreck, February 10

 One can also view the treasured relic of the right wrist-bone of St Paul……..

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What a delightful time we had wandering these ancient streets……..now it was time to go back to our marvelous apartment, after a few stops at the local markets to buy ingredients for dinner……….oh yes, and more wine!

(http://www.tripadvisor.com/VacationRentalReview-g190328-d2365752-or3-Valletta_Seafront-Valletta_Island_of_Malta.html#REVIEWS)

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 It was a day rich in history and discovery…..just the beginnings of an adventure that would lead us into the bowels of the earth to a Neolithic city over 5,00 years old

we sat and watched the sun set over our beautiful Malta and wondered what tomorrow would bring…..

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Remembering Memorial Day

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Memorial Day is a Federal holiday in the United States which occurs every year on the final Monday of May.   Memorial Day is a day of remembering the men and women who died while serving in the United States Armed Forces.

Formerly known as Decoration Day.  It typically marks the start of the summer vacation season, while Labor Day marks its end.

Many people visit cemeteries and memorials, particularly to honor those who have died in military service. Many volunteers place an American flag on each grave in United States national cemetery.

A fact that you should probably know is that African Americans are the reason that Memorial Day even exists in the first place.

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According to Professor David Blight of Yale University, the event began on May 1, 1865.  A group of former slaves in Charleston, SC gave a proper burial to 257 Union soldiers who’d been put into a mass grave.

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The black community of Charleston then consecrated the new cemetery with “an unforgettable parade of 10,000 people.”

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The event was initially called “Decoration Day” and was led by 3,000 black school children who started off by singing the song “John Brown’s Body.”  They were then followed by hundreds of black women with baskets of flowers and crosses.  After that, black men marched behind them in cadence, followed by Union infantry.

The Union soldiers lived in horrible conditions, and 257 of them died from exposure and disease.

This was the reason for the creation of the mass grave site.  A total of 28 black men went to the site and re-buried the men properly, largely as a thank you for helping fight for their freedom.

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They also built a fence around the cemetery, and on the outside, put the words, “Martyrs of the Race Course.”

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Dr. Boyce Watkins, who created an online course based on a forum held with Minister Louis Farrakhan, says that this is simply the tip of the iceberg.

He says that misinformation is one of the most storied weapons used to perpetuate the oppression of black people.

“Black people must, as part of our healing, go back and rewrite history to ensure that we learn the truth,” said Dr. Watkins. “You’ve been lied to for your entire life, so it is up to all of us to use the Internet as a critical resource in helping us to learn who we truly are.  We are great people and America would not be the country that it is today without our sacrifice.”

Now you know the rest of the story.  Go tell this one to everyone you know……

……let Freedom, Knowledge and Truth Ring……

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Tea & Cakes….and perhaps some Welsh Rarebit

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If you have been reading the exploits of the Tin Man, you know that he often travels to Media, Pennsylvania to visit the Marvelous, Magical Mary.

…………so in usual Tin Man fashion, here is a bit of history of the place called Media….

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The borough of Media was incorporated in 1850 and  is the county seat of Delaware County, Pennsylvania.     

In June 2006, it became the first fair trade town in America.

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The history of the town goes back to William Penn, who was named proprietor of the colony of Pennsylvania in 1681 by King Charles II of England. 

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William Penn

  

The Delaware County Institute of Science was founded in Media in 1833.

Media promotes itself as “Everybody’s Hometown”.

 Peter and William Taylor bought the land where Media is now located, directly from Penn. 

Thomas Minshall, a Quaker, was an early Media resident, settling just outside the small village then known as Providence, along the Providence Great Road.  The village then included a tailor shop, blacksmith shop, wheelwright shop, barn and other buildings.  Minshall bought 625 acres from William Penn and arrived in 1682. The Providence Friends Meeting was established at his house in February, 1688, and a meetinghouse was later built on land he donated for the purpose.  The original meetinghouse was built out of logs in 1699 or 1700 and the current building dates to 1814. 

Minshall’s house still stands and was given to the citizens of the borough in 1975. 

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The John J. Tyler Arboretum occupies part of Thomas Minshall’s original  property.   This farm was used by the underground railroad.   The land was donated to a public trust in 1944 by an eighth generation descendant. The arboretum was started as a private collection by brothers Jacob and Minshall Painter.  In 1825 they began systematically planting over 1,000 varieties of trees and shrubs.  Over 20 of their original trees survive including a giant sequoia.

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Media may be best known for secret government documents which were illegally seized there by activists in 1971 and distributed nationwide.  On March 8 of that year, the Citizens’ Commission to Investigate the FBI raided a FBI “resident agency” in Media. They later released thousands of documents to major newspapers around the country. These documents revealed controversial and illegal FBI tactics, like the recruitment of Boy Scouts as informants, and confirmed for the first time the existence of COINTELPRO, a FBI program to “expose, disrupt, misdirect, discredit, or otherwise neutralize” dissident groups in the US.

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Now back to the Tea Room…..

Downtown Media is a plethora of restaurants, shops and art….

We love to walk the streets and run across them to avoid the Trolley Cars, exploring all the marvelous culinary delights.

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On a recent trip, we went to explore the delights of an English Tea Room… Tea & Cakes

what a delightful and interesting place. ……. one of the owners sits in the Tea Room and joins any and all conversations she desires…and she is quite opinionated!

We had some delightful fare……

A plate of High Tea Sandwiches and Sweets…

….of course Welsh Rarebit with Toast Points….

and Tea…Marvelous Tea…..

….back outside to run in front of the Trolleys!…..wish me luck……….

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Fells Point : Baltimore

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Fell’s Point is a neighborhood in Baltimore, Maryland, and home to a variety of shops, restaurants, coffee bars, music stores, and over 120 pubs.  Located on the harbor and famous for its maritime past, it now boasts the greatest concentration of pubs/bars in the city.  The pubs and bars in Fell’s Point provide excellent entertainment and nightlife.  This waterfront community is a much-visited location in Baltimore.   The neighborhood has also been the home of large Polish and  Irish populations throughout its history.  In recent years a steadily increasing numbers of middle to upper middle-income residents have moved into the area, driving up property values.    Fell’s Point is one of several areas in and around Baltimore that are listed on the National Register of Historic Districts, and the first from Maryland.

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In 1965, transit planners proposed to link Interstate 83|I-83 and Interstate 95 in Maryland|I-95 by building an elevated highway along the north shore of the Baltimore harbor.  This project would have entailed extensive demolition within Fell’s Point, and the highway would have cut off the remainder of the neighborhood from the waterfront.  A  revolt against the proposals was raised by local residents and derailed the project.  Fell’s Point’s addition to the National Register of Historic Places prevented the use of federal funds for the road project, and contributed to the project’s cancellation.

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Barbara Milkulski

  One of the leaders of the revolt was Barbara Mikulski, who would go on to become a U.S. Senator.  We had the great pleasure of visiting with her at the Greek Festival in Baltimore recently.

 We love Fell’s Point and are so grateful to the marvelous Barbara for saving the place from becoming a highway! 

We found Fell’s Point from the Most Incredible Theadora whose blog is called People, Places and Bling

Now, every visit to Baltimore includes a day in Fell’s Point.

Our very favorite place to visit is The Thames Street Oyster House, small Pub located on the waterfront which provides the most delicious fare!

The Mussels are, quite frankly, the BEST I have eaten anywhere on our planet, including Belgium!

The bar is small and always full of locals eating and socializing.

The cocktails are most interesting and creative concoctions, we had the Moscow Mule………oh for YUM!

I sometimes dream of having lunch at Thames Street!

The streets of Fell’s Point are full of quaint and interesting shops…

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Even the Police Department is charming….and it was featured in “Homicide: Life on the Streets”

 

If you are ever in Baltimore……….go visit Fell’s Point, it is a place lost in time……

Does Your Vote Count?

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Let me begin by informing you that the photographs and much of the historical content of this blog is not my original research.

I received an email containing much of this information from my WONDERFUL friend of many decades (since she was my undergraduate English Professor, actually)

To see something of her click on: Reflections – A Visit to Pennsylvania 

………..so the story begins………A True Story of OUR Mothers and Grandmothers who lived only 90 years ago…..

 

Remember, it was not until 1920 that women were granted the right to go to the polls and vote……..

 
…………at one point, innocent and defenseless women were jailed for picketing the White House….

…… carrying signs asking for the vote……..

……..and by the end of the night, they were barely alive. Forty prison guards wielding clubs and their warden’s blessing went on a rampage against the 33 women. Women wrongly convicted of “obstructing sidewalk traffic”!!!
Lucy Burns, pictured below, was beaten and then left hanging from shackles on her wrists that were chained above her head…….she was left in this manner, throughout the night, bleeding and gasping for air………

Dora Lewis (below) was hurled into a dark cell, causing her to smash her head against an iron bed frame. She was knocked out by the blow; her cell mate, Alice Cosu, thought Dora was dead and became so terrified that she suffered a heart attack. Affidavits describe the prison guards as grabbing, dragging, beating, choking, slamming, pinching, twisting and kicking the women.
Thus was the unfolding of “The Night of Terror” on November 15, 1917.

This was the night that the warden at the Occoquan Workhouse in Virginia ordered his guards to ‘teach a lesson’ to the suffragists who dared to picket Woodrow Wilson’s White House for the right to vote.

For weeks, the women’s only water came from an open pail; their food was infested with worms.


Alice Paul, pictured below, was one of the leaders among the women and began a hunger strike. The guards tied her to a chair, forced a tube down her throat and poured liquid into her until she vomited. Alice continued to be tortured like this for weeks until word of her treatment was leaked to the press

Pictured below is Mrs. Pauline Adams in the prison garb she wore while serving her 60 day sentence.


………Miss Edith Ainge of Jamestown, New York………

……..Berthe Arnold Graduate of CSU…….

……….conferring over ratification of the 19th Amendment to the United States Constitution at the National Women’s Party Headquarters, Jackson Place, Washington D.C.………
Left to Right: Mrs. Lawrence Lewis, Mrs. Abby Scott Baker, Anita Politzer, Alice Paul, Florence Boeckel, Mabel Vernon (standing)

It is jarring to imagine Woodrow Wilson and his cronies attempted to persuade a psychiatrist to declare Alice Paul insane so that she could be permanently institutionalized.

To his credit the psychiatrist stated that Alice Paul was strong and brave and that did not make her crazy.

Below is Helena Hill Week from Norwalk, Connecticut, serving a three-day sentence in a Washington D.C. prison for carrying a banner that stated: “Governments derive their just powers from the consent of the governed.”


……….so it is with this recollection of facts that I implore you to not let all this hard work and suffering be in vain…..VOTE