Monday, December 26, 2005

This Week

On behalf of Orin and the rest of the Oddwalk family, I would like to wish all of you a very Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year. I hope that this season finds you spending time with friends and family.

This week is going to be especially great for me. Tuesday night, I am going out to dinner with my cousins. This is something we try and due over the holiday season, but it will be more special this year as we will be joined by my cousin, Heidi. Heidi is a lay missioner for the Maryknoll Missionaries. Currently she is working in Sao Paulo, Brazil. Because of the distance we don't see her very often, so Tuesday night should be a lot of fun.

On Thursday night, I'll be traveling to Belleville for the Youth Sing Praise Reunion. I have been involved in Youth Sing Praise (YSP)for a long time now, and I can tell you that it is an outstanding Catholic music camp for high school students. The participants of YSP form a tight knit family, and many of the friendships formed in this program last for many years. To learn more about Youth Sing Praise, visit the Shrine Youth Ministry website.

Please know that you are in our prayers during this holiday season.


Monday, December 19, 2005

Christmas Music Quiz

Can you figure out the more common name for these familiar Christmas tunes? Answers in the comments!


1. Have hither ward the entire assembly of those who are loyal in their

2. Listen, the celestial messengers produce harmonious sounds.

3. Nocturnal time span of unbroken quietness.

4. An emotion excited by the acquisition or expectation of good given to the
terrestrial sphere.

5. Embellish the structural supports with botanical evergreens.

6. Exalted heavenly beings to whom harkened.

7. Twelve o'clock on a clement night witnessed its arrival.

8. The Christmas preceding all others.

9. Small municipality in Judas southeast of Jerusalem.

10. Diminutive, masculine master of skin covered percussionist cylinders.

11. Omnipotent supreme being who elicits respite to ecstatic distinguished

12. Tranquility upon the terrestrial sphere.

13. Obese personification fabricated of compressed mounds of minute

14. Expectation of arrival to populated areas by mythical, masculine
perennial gift giver.

15. Natal celebration devoid of color, rather albino, as a hallucinatory
phenomenon for me.

16. The first person nominative plural of far eastern heads of state.

17. Tintinnabulation of vacillating pendulous in inverted, metallic .

18. In distant location the existence of an improvised unit of newborn
children's slumber furniture.

19. Proceed forth declaring upon a specific geological alpine formation.

20. Jovial yuletide desired for the second person singular or plural by us.

A Clarifiation of Sorts

This is not me (Orin). Nor am I one of Toronto's most wanted.

Weird what turns up when you do a Google image search for yourself. I'm also not a beekeeper nor a silent movie star. I know, hard to believe. I am the Assistant director of the St. Louis Chamber Chorus, which thankfully is the first picture and link to show up. I am also many other things: husband, mac/treo addict, egg-nog drinker, Oddwalker, haiku-writer, etc.

But I'm not this guy. The end.

Tuesday, December 13, 2005

The Happy Holidays vs. Merry Christmas Debate


Recently, my friend, Fr. Jamie Smith, weighed in on the touchy subject of how to greet people during the holiday season. For my money, he's right on. You can check out his entry here.



Strongbad has one. You have to wait for it, though.
Key-Sword-Tars are pure awesomeness.

PS - Don't forget to keep playing our Haiku Challenge!

Wednesday, December 7, 2005

Haiku Challenge

Inspired by this blog, we present the Oddwalk Haiku Challenge.

Well, it's not really much of a challenge. If you read this blog (I'm looking at you Marianne), simply use the comments to add a Haiku of your own. The only rule, besides the 5-7-5 syllables, is that your haiku must begin with the last word of the one before it. For instance:

It is cold outside.
Minnesota is colder.
Orin misses home.

Your next Haiku would begin with the word "Home." You can play more than once!

Monday, December 5, 2005

Mike Patin's Traveling Roller Bag

Mike Patin is a friend of Oddwalk's, so we just had to point you in his direction for this funny story.

When we saw him at NCYC this year, his roller bag didn't make it to Atlanta with him - it decided instead to visit South Africa without him. You can read about that incident on his blog too.

Well, guess what - the bag did it again, this time going to New Jersey while he was returning to Louisiana.

As Mike says, the bag is racking up a lot of frequent flyer miles!

Reminds me a bit of the Travelocity Roaming Gnome (video clip).

Check out the full stories on Mike's blog here.

Saturday, December 3, 2005

Fundraiser at Wash U.

Oddwalk is excited to be heading to Washington University in St. Louis to be a part of a fundraising concert for their Campus Ministry's Social Justice trip to Bangladesh next year.

Shannon's cousin Pete (find him on this page) is organizing it, and asked us to open for Javier Mendoza, who is active at their student center along with his other performance schedule.

Please support this trip if you can: by coming to the concert tonight (saturday) or by contacting Pete at

Pete Cerneka
Service and Social Justice Coordinator

Catholic Student Center, Washington University
6352 Forsyth Blvd, St. Louis, MO 63105-2269
314-935-9191, x209

Thursday, December 1, 2005

Nun recognizes, helps nab suspected thief

And right in our own "backyard" too - Granite City, Illinois!

Put 'em up!

Ryan Fitzpatrick, Harvard Graduate

Hey All,

For those that don't know this already, I, Orin, am a Harvard graduate - BA, 1996. I don't tell you this to boast or to make you bow down to me in homage or anything -- really, if you knew what my degree was in, you'd probably just burst out laughing -- but that's a post for another time.

I tell you this so that you understand why I empathize so much with the following tale.

Ryan Fitzpatrick is a recent Hararvd graduate too, and was it seems a great player in the Ivy League. I don't follow football too closely, but know that in last sunday's game, the Rams' usual starter, Bulger, was out with injury, and the backup, Martin, got hit in the head a few too many times during the game. So Fitzpatrick came in and rallied the team from behind to win the game (in overtime I think).

Anyway, he's all the buzz around St. Louis now, and will probably even start the next game.

But check out this quote from yesterday's Rams press conference - I heard it on the radio driving in today, and thought to myself, "Ah, so I'm not entirely alone."

Fitzpatrick, answering some sort of reporter's question about his academic history, says:

I’ve heard just about everything. The best is [that] everybody expects me to know every answer to every question. During training camp some guys were in a big, heated discussion, so I walked over to see what they were talking about. They said, ‘Fitz, you can answer this question; you’re from Harvard.’ I said, okay, maybe it’s some trivial question, some history, something. They said, ‘What do you think would hurt more, getting hit in the face by the trunk of an elephant or being kicked in the face by a donkey?’ So that is one of the stranger questions I’ve been asked.

Amen, brother, Amen.

Wednesday, November 30, 2005

Happy Advent

Orin and Erin light their baptismal candles from an advent wreath created by Orin's sister at their wedding last year, on the First Sunday of Advent.

Tuesday, November 29, 2005

Preaching in Missouri last weekend

This past weekend, the bishops of the Missouri Catholic Conference decided to ask all of their priests and deacons to direct their homilies toward educating the faithful about Church teaching with regards to stem cell research. This means that, in theory, anyone who attended Mass in Missouri this weekend was presented with a homily on this subject.

A reporter from the Associated Press was at the 10am Mass at St. Peter Church in Jefferson City (where I work) this past Sunday to listen to a homily by Fr. Jamie Smith and interview him after Mass. That information was then turned into an article that has been circulating regionally and nationally for the last few days. A version of that article can be found by clicking here.

I bring this to your attention because, in some news reports, Fr. Jamie's words have been taken out of context, and in other places his words have supposedly implied that the Catholic Church opposes all forms of stem cell research. This is not true. I would refer you to Fr. Jamie's complete homily text which can be found by clicking here.

If you've gotten to this point in the blog, thanks for your concern. Please pass this along to others who might not fully understand this issue and what the Catholic Church has to say about it.


Monday, November 28, 2005

Orin & Erin's 1st Anniversary

We have been married one year and one day as I (Orin) write this... Seems like not that long, honestly, which I guess is better than it feeling more like 10 years!

We celebrated with a night at the Renaissance Grand downtown and dinner where we had our reception a year ago. ANd presents and stuff. Flowers, cards, etc.

I'm not sure anyone truly appreciates the marriage vocation going into it - I'm not sure if I had any pre-coceived notions, but if I did, I'm sure they weren't what the last year actually was.

Here's to going forward on the journey together, both looking forward at what we can't exactly see!

Thursday, November 24, 2005

Wednesday, November 23, 2005

Minor Earthquake!

So, Erin and I (Orin) were up watching TV (The Colbert Report) on our new DVR (yay!) about 11pm last night, and suddenly, there's a bump that lasts about a second or less. I felt the whole house move, so did Erin, probably like 1/32 of an inch or something. It felt as if a really slow moving really heavy truck had come to a stop by bumping our house. I looked at her, she looked at me. She used to live next to a small airport and wondered if a little sonic boom had happened... We shrugged, and kept watching TV, and eventually went to bed.

So, this morning I'm driving to the Shrine, and hear on KMOX news that about 11pm last night there was a mild (2.x on the Richter Scale) earthquake in Cahokia, right across the river from STL and where Erin grew up. No damage, injuries, most slepping probably didn't even know about it. Of course, I can't find a link to prove it to you, but I'll be back when one turns up.

I experienced a similar earthquake when I was about 9 years old as my family was visiting friends in South Dakota. It was a little stronger and longer, felt like a large truck (again) was driving along the bumpy road outside (which didn't exist). You just don't expect happenings like this in this part of the country, and when those moments occur, earthquakes aren't first on the list of things you think about...


Update: Ah, here we go: rumble rumble

Tuesday, November 22, 2005

Darryl Strawberry, Jesse Manibusan, and the Diocese of Ogdensburg


What a great time we had in Watertown, NY this weekend! On Saturday, Orin and I had the opportunity to present at the first ever Jr. High Youth Alive. About 120 youth and adults filed into a high school auditorium for three hours of stories, music, and fun. We were very impressed with the young people, especially. While they were certainly packed with energy, the teens also showed a tremendous amount of focus. Thank you to all who attended, and especially to Bishop Cunningham for capping the day by presiding at the closing liturgy.

The strangest part of our trip, however, involved our travel. On Friday, we were waiting at the gate for our flight when a gentleman nearby got our attention and asked us if we liked baseball. After we said we did, he pointed out the fact that Darryl Strawberry, former New York Mets/Yankees outfielder, was also waiting for the same flight. It's not everyday that you see someone like Darryl, so we were a little caught off guard. If you are a fan of the St. Louis Cardinals and attended games at Busch Stadium in the 80's, you undoubtedly remember taunting Darryl by chanting his name (Daaarrrryyyllll....Daaarrrryyyylll....) I don't ever remember giving that treatment to any other visiting ballplayer.

Then, on our way home, it happened again. As we were waiting (at 5am EST) to check in at the Syracuse Airport (a very small regional airport), we saw someone else we knew. Jesse Manibusan! It turns out that Jesse had a booking somewhere else in New York state that weekend and was on his way home. Not only were we at the same airport at the same ridiculously early time in the morning on the same day, but we ended up on the same flight to Chicago. You would think that would be strange enough, but by some twist of fate, we were also booked into the same row on the plane. It was a small airplane that, in each row, has one seat, an aisle, and then two seats. There were only three seats in the row and Orin, Jesse, and I filled them. Very strange! It gave us a great opportunity, though, to catch up with Jesse and talk a little business. There is a lot that Orin and I can learn from Jesse, so we were grateful for the chance to spend some time with him.

All in all, it was a great weekend. We look forward to Thanksgiving Day, when Orin and I have the opportunity to play music for an annual dinner provided for the needy in the Belleville, IL area. It should be a lot of fun.


Thursday, November 17, 2005


It is toally snowing in up-state New York right now! Oddwalk is getting ready for its visit to the Diocese of Ogdensburg, and Orin particularly is ready to see some fluffy white stuff.

He grew up in Minnesota, after all, and it is the middle of November. St. Louis is not a snow-lover's paradise.

Perhaps that could be effective marketing for St. Louis, "St. Louis is not a snow-lover's paradise" -- but I doubt it.

Back on topic: Orin will not lose a snowball fight. Remember that before firing the first shot.

Wednesday, November 16, 2005

It's Cold

In honor of the first freeze of the year (In St. Louis, MO)...

Let's build a snowman! Yay!

Monday, November 14, 2005

My New Nephew

Hello All,

If you click on the title of this post you'll find the Web Nursery picture of my nephew Nathan. Mom, Dad, and son are back at home and doing well. Please continue to support them and all new parents with your prayers.


Wednesday, November 9, 2005

Announcing the arrival of Nathan Ryan Young

Tonight, my sister Laura gave birth to a healthy baby boy. Nathan Ryan was born at around 4:30pm CST. He he is 7 lbs. 13 oz. and 20 inches long. Laura is doing well. Both she and her husband Ryan are elated and exhausted. I'm sure I'll have more later.


Prayers for Evansville, IN

Oddwalk sends prayers and best wishes to those in the diocese of Evansville, IN who were affected by the recent tornados. We have the privilege to be a part of the youth rally there a couple months back. Hope everyone is well, and persevering in life and in faith. God be with you all.

Tuesday, November 8, 2005

Bye-bye Busch

Follow the link to see pictures from the start of the Busch Stadium demolition. I'm sure there are a lot of people outside the St. Louis area who don't care about this, but, for me, it's kind of sad and cool all at the same time.

Go Cards!

Wednesday, November 2, 2005

A new hobby for Orin

This afternoon I had the opportunity to participate in a "Thank You" dinner for the three quilting groups in our parish. I played a couple of songs and had dinner at a table with six or seven other quilting ladies. For some reason our conversation got around to cell phones and I was commenting on all the things that Orin's phone could do, such as play movies and record things. The ladies were puzzled by the "movie" feature on his phone and I explained that if he was, for instance, waiting for a flight at the airport, that this option might come in handy. It was then that one of the ladies told me to suggest to him that he take up knitting as a hobby. I told them that I would. Secretly I knew, though, that unless knitting was a feature on his phone, or unless Macintosh came out with i-knitting, it was never going to happen.


Tuesday, November 1, 2005

Singing Horses

Continuing the flash animation fun...

Click on the horses to start or stop them.


Monday, October 31, 2005

A Hippo and His Curious Joy

Courtesy of Gene from APeX Ministries. Enjoy!

Let me see!

Pray for Orin's Dad

Please keep Orin's Dad in prayer - while Oddwalk was in Atlanta to NCYC, he suffered a mild heart attack. There is no apparant damage to the heart, and he will be having two stents put in tomorrow morning to help solve some blockage issues. He feels fine, and should be home tomorrow night. There are some other health concerns, but what could have been horrible is actually about as good as could be hoped for. He is 80 years old, but is strong and vital still. This was a bit of a surprise, but could have been much worse.

Thanks everyone.

Saturday, October 29, 2005

NCYC Update #4


What a great long day, a great long weekend. The obvious highlight of our day was being a part of the Comedy Club: "God You Crack Me Up!" this afternoon, along with emcees APeX, and performers Over the Top, and Stooge 4 Christ. What a great chance to have fun and entertain about 5,000 youth and adults from around the country. Thanks to Chris from "Iowa" (D.C. really) for being a good sport and the best "Stinky Chris" ever.

A word of apprecation to all the folks from all around the country who came to see us on stages or at the booth, and to those who stopped to have conversations with us. We hope to see you all again soon, maybe at your parish, school, or diocesan event. Thanks too to all who supported our ministry and our visit to NCYC by purchasing CDs and other stuff.

Thanks to Edwin for being a good moving poof-ball target. Thanks to Ryan Myers, Sarah Bauer, Chris Padgett, Mike Patin, APeX, lots of youth ministers, diocesan ministers, volunteers... all the many ministers and friends we had the chance to share some time with, and re-connect with.

If you were there in any capacity, thanks to you, our ministry is literally nothing without all of you. God bless, and safe travels back home.

Back to Missouri tomorrow.

Friday, October 28, 2005

NCYC Update #3

this is an audio post - click to play

This will probably become known as the infamous "Disco Clap" post. This is not what we mean by "Disco Clap" but is still pretty weird.

PS - Hi Marianne, this post's for you.

NCYC Update #2

It's friday morning, and yesterday was a lot of fun! We got to me so many people from around the country, and Orin was excited to see a couple folks from his home area of Tyler/Lake Benton Minnesota. Reconnecting with old friends is always one of the nicest parts of conferences like these.

We heard a lot of stories about really long bus rides, smooth flights, and saw a lot of people wearing a lot of weird things: tie-dye, flamingo hats, crustacean hats, oompa-loompas, several saints and angels... I guess it wouldn't be NCYC without them!

Our first performance opportunity is today at noon, and we're thrilled. Wish us luck!

Wednesday, October 26, 2005

Monday, October 24, 2005

Gearing up for NCYC

Oddwalk is getting excited about our trip to see 17,000 Catholic youth at NCYC! We hope to meet as many of you as we can during our time there, and hope you get to hear some of our music and stories too.

One thing I'm looking forward to is the drive - really! It's been 7 years or so since I've drive through the part of the country between St. Louis and Atlanta. I spent 2 years in SW Virginia at school, and am looking forward to seeing that part of the country again - hopefully the fall colors are timed just right!

Until later - Orin

Friday, October 21, 2005

Oddwalk visits St. Margaret of Scotland School

Hey everybody,

Oddwalk had a great time this afternoon at St. Margaret of Scotland in the Shaw neighborhood of St. Louis, Orin's neck of the woods. Sharing stories of faith, fathers, scars, and mission, the 6th, 7th, and 8th graders seemed to find the spirit of Participation, Community and Mission.

Neither of us were really sure who she was, so let's all read up:
St. Margaret of Scotland

Thanks to Peter Hesed for arranging many of the details of our visit, and thanks to the teachers and youth for being willing to host us and so willing to be a part of our presentation. Thanks to Karl (Carl?) for outstanding (?) "Lord I Lift Your Name on High" leadership.

While this is Orin's parish geographically, he seldom gets to visit due to Shrine obligations; so it was particularly special to make this visit today.

Thanks again, St. Margarets!

Wednesday, October 19, 2005

When you get to the stop sign first... get to go first.

In Missouri that's how it works, anyway. I guess most people in my neighborhood never learned that.

(I'm sure everyone in the neighborhood reads this blog frequently too. Right.)


Tuesday, October 18, 2005

My Nominee for Best Quote about NLCS Game 5

"When that ball flew over our heads, I turned to Mike Mason, our bullpen coach, and said, 'That's why they pay that guy 100 million bucks.' ”

— Cardinals reliever Ray King, who was in the bullpen

From this great article at


New (baseball-type) Hope!

Did you see how far he hit that ball last night - holy cwap.

When watching sports at home, I've jumped out of my seat exactly twice in my life:

1) The last-second tackle by Jones that won the Rams the Superbowl

2) Pujols' homer last night.

Go Cards - Oddwalk *will* be in attendance at Game 7. We will.


Monday, October 17, 2005

Don't do this to us again...

*sigh* Cardinals, you can come back, right?

Thursday, October 13, 2005


On Sunday, my daughter, Madeleine, turns one year old.  Parents often say things like this, but it doesn't seem like it's been a year.  I've watched her grow from a tiny, helpless, wrinkled infant, to a grinning, adorable, walking, mischievous toddler.  I know that there are many more changes in store, and if they're anything like the ones I've already seen, I can't wait.  I could probably write a lot more about all of this, but I don't think I'd know where to stop.  I just like being a daddy.  That's all.

Behold My Keytar, and Weep

I am now the proud owner of a "keytar" - the Yamaha SHS-10, from the mid-80's. (That's a cartoon-drawing of it in the pic. Shannon had one many many years ago too.) Mostly for use at home with my computer/composing/recording setup, but don't be too shocked if it comes along for some random appearances from time to time. Plucked it off of ebay for probably too much $$, but was probably paying for a bit of "kitsch value" too. Kitsch, is of course, in the eye of the beholder...

I'm pleased to learn that HSR is aware of the keytar culture (so to speak) too. Did you know there is a wikipedia site just for HSR stuff? That's where the picture is from, and where the title-link takes you. is also a useful site.

Keytars are awesome, don't let anyone tell you otherwise.


Wednesday, October 12, 2005

Intelligent design?

Read this.

I hope that's not offensive to anyone, I just find it really funny.


Thursday, October 6, 2005

Source and Summit

"Taking part in the eucharistic sacrifice, which is the fount and apex of the whole Christian life, they offer the Divine Victim to God, and offer themselves along with It." (paragraph 11)

Lumen Gentium

So, the oft-used phrase "source and summit" or "font and apex" - what is this we refer to, the Eucharist (i.e. the consecrated host)? No, rather, the eucharistic sacrifice. The sacrifice of thanksgiving, the Mass. The ritual action, not the noun. The ritual action that gathers, breaks open (Christ present in Gospel, and bread/wine become body/blood) shares, and sends. The celebration that calls us to "Participation, Community, and Mission."

Just an observation.

Wednesday, October 5, 2005

Fun Website

I don't know that Oddwalk really is better than oatmeal, or that if we were we'd hear about it from such an authoritative source (such as the Almighty), but I thought at least the concept was innocuous enough.
Clicky to create your own...

Monday, October 3, 2005

End of an era

As the last of the fireworks exploded, and my family and I walked out of Busch Stadium yesterday, I couldn't help but feel like I was losing a part of myself.  Professional baseball stadiums shouldn't rank very high on the list of significant losses in our lives.  I understand that.  Still, many of the most exciting moments of my life are kept in a ballpark that will be torn down a few days after the Cardinals finish their season this year.  These include: watching Vince Coleman stealing bases at will, Ozzie Smith doing a back flip each opening day.  Jim Edmonds robbing an opponent of an extra-base hit with a spectacular catch, standing in awe as Mark McGwire hit a 565 ft. home run, and recently cheering wildly as David Eckstein hit a grand slam to win the game.  The list could go on and on.
Being able to attend the last regular-season game at Busch Stadium was a thrill.  Thanks again to my wife, Erin, for those tickets.  In my life, Busch Stadium went from being an imposing home of heroes, to a comfortable place where men played baseball at the highest level.  I am looking forward going to games in the new stadium, though.  I'm sure it will be great.  Who knows?  Maybe we'll even have a new World Championship flag to fly there.  For now... good-bye Busch Stadium.  Thanks for everything.
-Go Cards!

Friday, September 30, 2005


And now for something completely different...

I was reminded recently of one of my favorite childhood toys growing up, Transformers (more than meets the eye, you know). From the mid-80's give or take. Loved 'em - Christmas 1985 was the Transformer Christmas for me. I had soundwave, Cliffjumper, the small autobot airplane, the firetruck, the microscope, Braun (the little jeep), at least a few others...

I kept a few, and sold of the others at yard sales and such as I grew up... Fast-forward to tday: I looked 'em up on the internet, and to my surprise, on ebay, there's a huge market for these things - they were maybe $20 for the big ones back then... They're selling for well over $200-300 dollars these days! Holy cow.

One of the things that made these toys so unique and is probably pushing their value yet today is that they could change from at least one "object" - usally a car or a plane - into a robot, then back again. They were adaptable to situations and needs.

One of the most important abilities we humans should cherish too is our ability to change. To be instruments of change, when needed. Think about it.


Interesting Surveys of Catholics, Thoughts and Practices

Hi All -

Click above to visit this week's National Catholic Reporter special insert on American Catholics - the results of several polls over several years. There are some interesting results between varying age groups and beliefs/practices, and may turn your thoughts about stereotyping "who is what sort of Catholic" on your head.

For instace, which age group had the highest percentage to self-state they "could not explain their faith to others"?

Those born before Vatican II, at 59%. The lowest percent is 44%, from Shannon and my age group, and the overall average is 49% (Table 13, toward the bottom of the page) - 49% is rather high, don't you think?

Make sure to read the whole of the findings, and please, don't take any items out of context, including the above statistic - everything is much more complicated than it seems...

For more, click here.


Thursday, September 29, 2005

Site Updates

Hey All -

Over at the main page, check out the new info on the CD "Little Steps" and our new book,"Just Because You Can," based on our song of the same name. Other merchandise (t-shirt!) will be for sale soon too, check it out.

Over here at the blog, we've introduced some small google ads. If you click on them, or the ones over at the main page, Oddwalk earns money. Like, 4 cents per click or something. Searching Google via our main page also drops some $ in our coffers. If you want to support us and our ministry, here's a quick, easy way that won't cost you a dime!

Thanks everyone,

Wednesday, September 28, 2005

Great Time in Jeff City (Pt. 2)

I just wanted to echo Orin's sentiments about Sunday's Diocesan Youth Rally in the Diocese of Jefferson City.  I witnessed a great spirit among the teenagers in attendance, the adults, the speakers, and the wonderful team.  For the first time in recent memory, the day ended with Mass.  What a joyful celebration.  Thanks again to Tim for the invitation to be a part of the rally.  We're looking forward to more "house-banding" in April for the Jefferson City Diocesan Jr. High Youth Rally.

Tuesday, September 27, 2005

Great Time in Jeff City

Hey everyone,

Sorry about the suddenly somewhat slow pace of posting, it's been a busy 2-3 weeks, and may be busy right up through NCYC!

We had a great time in Jeff City this past Sunday at the Senior High Youth Rally; thanks Tim for putting together a wonderful event. Wasn't APeX awesome, as usual? And Dawn Kinsman too!

We hope you enjoyed our music and our humor, both gifts from the Lord, meant to be shared.

We don't really have anything coming up until NCYC, but that's okay - got to get a lot of stuff ready for the booth and for the comedy stage, coffee houses... Should be a great weekend too!

Thursday, September 22, 2005

Forget Something?

Last week Shannon talked to Mike Eppler, Director of Youth Ministry for the Diocese of Evansville, IN, and wrote down several very important details about the (then) upcoming Oddwalk appearance at the Evansville Youth Rally. That information included directions to the hotel, the name of the hotel, and phone numbers for the rally organizers. As he left Fulton, MO, Shannon placed that piece of paper in his pocket and left to meet Orin and Erin in Belleville for the trip to Evansville. That is the last time Shannon ever saw that piece of paper. This was not a problem until we reached Evansville and needed to know where to go, where we would be staying, and who we would talk to when we got there. After arriving in Evansville, Shannon, Orin, and Erin (orin's wife) spent the next two hours calling every hotel in Evansville (there are many) to see if they had ever heard of “the Diocese of Evansville”, any one named Cerneka, or anyone named Orin Johnson. The first place Shannon called was the Days Inn. This was because Shannon believed that to actually be the place we were staying. The man at the desk told us that they had no reservation for us. Well…actually…they did. I’m not sure what happened, but long story short, we finally got checked in to our rooms, albeit two hours after we had initially called them. Thanks to the hotel staff at the nearby Holiday Inn for letting us rest on their couches and helping us by calling hotels for us while we were lost.,

The moral of the story is…well…actually…there is no moral. Just don’t trust this kind of information to Shannon…EVER!!

Thursday, September 15, 2005

I Always Wondered...

My (Orin's) score was exactly 50 - I expected much higher. What's yours? Click above!

Many Orins

So, I put my name in that little blank up there, and clicked the "Search All Blogs" button. Many folks write about Orins, some Orins are writers themselves. Lots of Orin Kerr posts and references. So for a more random sampling, I tried "Orin -Kerr" and that helped.

I'm not entirely sure why, but I think this post may be my favorite of the ones I looked at, and it's first on the "orin - kerr" list. Maybe because just by itself it leaves so much to the imagination.

Apparantly, I have not been blogged about, other than right here. That's just fine, not sure what I'd expect others to be saying anyway.

Tuesday, September 13, 2005

Listening for God

This is only Tuesday, and it's already been a pretty busy week.  Due to some circumstances out of my control, Fr. Jamie Smith (the associate pastor at the parish where I work as youth minister) and I had to scramble to put together a three-hour program for about sixty-five 6th, 7th, and 8th graders.  The event was a big success, but I wasn't sure that we would continue to have it once a month as I had originally promised.  That was mainly because I am already pretty busy and the thought of adding to my schedule makes me really anxious.  Throughout the course of those three hours though, five or six volunteers stepped forward to say that they would be more than willing to help me out in the future.  It was really cool.  God was using them to speak to me.  Their offer will allow me to provide more opportunities for our parish youth to deepen their faith in God.
Sometimes our idea of what should or shouldn't be happening is contrary to what God is calling for in that particular situation.  I think it's really important to listen for God's voice.  It's likely to come when you are least expecting it.

Saturday, September 10, 2005

Very Sunburned

Shannon and I are. So is Orin's wife, Erin, but probably not Shannon's wife, Erin.

Also, Orin is thirsty.

But we had a good time at the Festival of Faiths and Cultures at the National Shrine of Our Lady of the Snows, where Oddwalk served as emcees, opening prayer coordinators, and all-around good eggs. Erin was the stage manager.

So, it was sunny and in the 90s here today. Ow. We also got to wear nice, but heavy, brown, long-sleeved shirts.

We'll hopefully be in better shape by Evansville next weekend. Is that event indoors?

Wednesday, September 7, 2005

Site Update - Donations Page Live

Everyone -

More updates at the main site, including several links to make donations - for the Katrina relief efforts, or more generally.

Erin and Orin have signed up through the Humane Society to become a foster dog home for any displaced pets - updates if anything happens there.

Tuesday, September 6, 2005

Go bowling Sunday night, help a good cause

On Sunday night at 7pm, join Belleville-area young adults for an evening of bowling to support the St. Vincent de Paul society - visit Belleville Young Adult Ministry for more info.

PS - Yes, I'm biased, my (Orin's) wife is helping to organize this... Hi, honey...

Saturday, September 3, 2005

A personal perspective

Our good friend Mike Patin lives in Metairie, LA, a suburb of New Orleans.  Thankfully, Mike and his family escaped the city several days ago and are staying with family in Lafayette, LA.  Mike has been updating the blog on his website since the tragedy began.  If you would like to check it out you can click here.  The blog offers a unique and personal look at the devastation.  His writing also offers a Christian perspective and suggests a Christian response.  Very interesting.

Thursday, September 1, 2005

Main Site Updated

Hi everyone,

I've just updated - the main page is slightly updated, the donations page is available for donations to our minsitry or to charities around the world, and you can finally buy our CDs online! Go take a look: shiny updated web page

Wednesday, August 31, 2005


It amazes me that Joe Christ gets an entire blog entry named for him and all he had to say was "O.K.".

Check out the new Oddwalk Website at

Joe Christ (yes, that's really his last name, no relation) is super cool

this is an audio post - click to play

Tuesday, August 30, 2005

Prayers for our friends to the south

On behalf of the Oddwalk family, l want to offer a special prayers for the victims of Hurricane Katrina.  Through our ministry, and our lives in general, we've been able to meet a lot of wonderful friends.  Some of those friends live in the area most strongly affected by the force of the hurricane.
If you would like to contribute to the relief effort, you can click on either the Red Cross or Catholic Relief Services, both of whom are responding to this catastrophe.

Thursday, August 25, 2005

Germany and the near future

Guten tag!
I've finally returned from Germany where I, along with 800,000 of my closest friends, were celebrating the 2005 International World Youth Day.  This event was capped off with a Papal Mass attended by 1.2 million people at Marienfeld.  It was a truly extraordinary event.  To see the overwhelming faith of all of those youth from around the world gave me hope that the present and future church are in good hands.  To see some pictures and highlights from our trip, click here.
The next couple of months will be very busy for me.  In addition to my job as youth minister at St. Peter's, my ministry with oddwalk will keep me hopping.  As Orin mentioned in an earlier blog, we are recording a short CD to take to NCYC with us.  We are also developing t-shirts and traveling around the country a bit to do our ministry.  We are truly blessed to be able to do what we do!
I need to go for now.  Have a great week!

Check out the new Oddwalk Website at

Speaking of the studio...

We'll try to get some pictures up later on, so you may believe this...

But so you know: our "recording studio" is in our recording engineer's mom's basment hair salon. Really.

Shannon's "For All Time" was recorded there, and you'd never know it, would you...

Recording Tonight

Shannon and Orin will be in the studio tonight, working on a little CD to bring with them to NCYC in October... Planned tracks include:

new studio versions of:
Chickenwire Joe
Matilda the Gorilla

and new recordings of:
Just Because You Can
My Name Is I AM
Old Irish Blessing

Stay tuned - visit our CD page on the main site for more info!

Friday, August 19, 2005

World Youth Day Info

Click above to see (in English) the current happenings of World Youth Day.

I've (Orin has) been watching bits and pieces of World Youth Day on EWTN (I'm not so much a big EWTN watcher, but that's another post for another day).

I saw part of Pope Benedict XVI coming down the river (Rhine? not sure...) into Cologne and greeting the pilgrims before heading to the Cathedral. I think his "smile-face" may be frozen that way, I don't think the expression ever changed. Perhaps Shannon will have a different report...


Wednesday, August 17, 2005

Hello from Germany!

I'm writing to you from Dusseldorf, Germany where I'm attending the International World Youth Day celebration.  We're having a great time, meeting a lot of great people, eating some amazing food, and wearing ourselves down.  I don't have much time to write.  Please pray for us and all the pilgrims who've traveled here for this event.  See you when I get back.

Taize community in mourning

Brother Roger Murdered

AP, PARIS - The 90-year-old founder of a Christian ecumenical community was stabbed to death in front of thousands of worshippers during an evening prayer service, a killing deplored Wednesday by Pope Benedict XVI and by the head of the Anglican Church, who called the slain man ''one of the best-loved Christian leaders of our time.''

We join the world in mourning this loss.

Make sure to visit...

If somehow you've found this blog without coming to our homepage first, make sure to visit -- so much content there about us, our ministries, our music...

Tuesday, August 16, 2005


Dear friends,

Welcome to our blog! I know, I know, there are already 1,423,842 blogs out there, why another? Well, why not?

We hope to be able to share with our friends, families, and guests some of what makes us alive here. We hope to share stories, jokes, observations, and anything else that comes to mind, and we hope to do it all with Christ at the center.

Your comments are always welcome! Check back regularly for updates, and we hope to see you all soon!

Orin Johnson (& Shannon Cerneka, off to World Youth Day in Germany!)