Father’s Day

  1. Heart of a Father
  2. The World’s Most Important Mother


Where me and the missus keep going for vacation, there’s a very quirky winery, Boskydel.

The founder, Bernie Rink, is generally and mostly fondly known as The Wine Nazi. But a recent profile has made me just plain fond of the guy.

“The first plot was a single test acre; by then I owned sixteen acres in the center of the Peninsula.  It was all a wild experiment—no one had ever grown wine grapes up here.  I worked with Stanley Howell of Michigan State University—he brought students up here as a field research opportunity.”

Those students may have counted themselves among the lucky ones; Rink’s five sons, not so much. Taking the whole enterprise very personally, Jim writes in his essay, ‘Field Of Dreams in Leelanau County’:

“I first realized that my father was serious about growing grapes when he announced his intention to raze our modest, but popular baseball diamond in favor of a nursery. My brothers and I created that ball park, hacking it out from a fallow field with a regular push-type lawnmower. We even built a substantial chicken-wire backstop to halt the progress of an errant pitch.

“In a rude reversal of the magical ‘Field of Dreams’ scenario, Bernie Rink told us the diamond would have to go, replaced by a crop that no one in those parts had ever heard of: Wine grapes.”

To add insult to injury, Jim suspects that Bernie saw the vineyard as an ideal way to keep the boys occupied.  He goes on to lament:

“As economic assets, we were expected to chop weeds in the sweltering heat of mid-summer and pick grapes in the stinging sleet of late fall. Not to mention pruning in knee-deep snow in the winter and sorting out the good wood, which would be plunged into our new-found nursery in the spring to repeat the endless, monotonous cycle.

But it was fun. We used to make up lively little songs about the vineyard to the tune of ‘Tah, Rah, Rah, Boom-de-ay’:

“We work at Boskydel,
the closest thing to hell.
We’re never treated well,
at Slave Camp Boskydel.”

Darned if I can find it now, but the clincher for me was that when someone congratulated Bernie on his role as wine pioneer, he replied “I raise five good men. That’s more important.” That’s the heart of a father.


[A]ll the Mariological doubts and errors of modern times depend in the last resort precisely upon an utter Christological confusion. They reveal a hopeless “conflict in Christology.” There is no room for the Mother of God in “reduced Christology.” Protestant theologians simply have nothing to say about her. Yet to ignore the Mother means to misinterpret the Son. On the other hand, the Blessed Virgin can be properly understood and rightly described only in a Christological setting and context. Mariology is to be but a chapter in the treatise on the Incarnation, never to be extended into an independent “treatise.” Not, of course, an optional or occasional chapter. The Mystery of the Incarnation includes the Mother of the Incarnate.

(George Florovsky) Of course, it also includes the Father, who Mary’s son before all ages, and the Holy Spirit, of whom and the Theotokos He became incarnate. You can look that up.

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“In learning as in traveling and, of course, in lovemaking, all the charm lies in not coming too quickly to the point, but in meandering around for a while.” (Eva Brann)

Some succinct standing advice on recurring themes.