Category Archives: namesake

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in the pulpit


This was supposed to go out last Friday. I got so nervous I forgot to post it. I’ll follow up, coincidentally with the Honest Scrap Award post in response to Lazy Buddhist, who bestowed it upon me.

~~~~~

some truth in all graphicI’m a little nervous about this weekend at church. Nervous because I’ll be giving the sermon. The title of it is: “The semantics of religious language”

The description of it reads like this in our newsletter:

You say tomato, I say tomahto… should we call the whole thing off? Of course not.

Although we may see the same thing, we might call it by different names. For instance, some languages such as Spanish use the word Dios for God, Arabic uses the word Allah for God and others to describe The Divine or Supreme Being might call it by another name.

Unfortunately it isn’t always as easy in one’s own language. It is our abstract concepts of faith and our attempt to attach words to describe them that can often times create tension, misunderstanding and dismissal of growth opportunities.

Join us as we delve into the different aspects of religious speak and how honing our ability to transcribe the faith language of others will help us grow as UUs.

I’ve given a few sermons before at my church so Continue reading

a retelling


I was visiting with my dad a little last week and he said, “did i ever tell you how my dad died. In three days it will be the anniversary of when he died. He was 22. [dad looks down and somewhat whispers] just 22.”

I’ve heard the story only a few times and I guess for that reason I never really remember all the details. I probably should pay closer attention since he is the reason my name is Julian.

He was an accountant, just like my dad.

He was newly married… only about a year or so and his bride at the time of his death was a mere 18 and a half years old.

He was working at a pharmaceutical company.

It was pretty cold that night. Seems odd to me because in Matamoros which is in the northern part of Mexico right across the border from Brownsville, Texas, I would think it wouldn’t be too terribly cold.

He apparently went back to talk to the chemist about some expenditures or invoices or something. As he was standing in the room, the chemicals that were being mixed reacted in an unexpected way and there was a huge explosion. The chemist died instantly but my grandfather was engulfed in flames. He ran down the stairs and outside into the street. Someone saw him and took off their coat and patted him down to put out the flames. My grandfather was horribly burned and hung on for two days until he passed away.

He was just 22.

Roberto Julian

Jan 10, 1920 – Nov 9, 1942

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of my namesake


I just found out that yesterday was my grandfather’s birthday. He was born in 1920 and would have been 88.

He died in November 1942…  two months before my dad was born.

I wonder what he was like.   I know my dad does, too.