What if’s and do you Remember

I do like this time of year because in my many memory bank I have lots of good solid family times to rest back into along the way.

Sure, this year will be new and filled I think with memory making moments.  There will be 12 (so far) at the table.  I love a full table.  I love having new people together.  I look forward to good conversation and laughter.

I’m cooking in Raton and the kitchen there is different than the one here in ABQ.  Neither of which have much counter space.

There is a song of the Civil War era that always comes to mind this time of year.  “We will meet but we will miss him”.   the next line is there will be one vacant chair…

And I recognize how many of the dear memory people won’t be with us.   But their spirits remain.   I’m looking forward to it.

So what if you could have the perfect table of people, who would be there?   Just wondering.  Who would be missing?  Just remembering.

Happy Thanksgiving

God abides


November 2018




Lunch at flying star Juan tabo

The place was noontime-crowded when. She sat down, she chose a table near the counter so she could get refills easily and because it is not in the center of things. Sometimes she likes sitting on the edge. (that reminds me of a quote from midnight in the garden of good and evil).

The gentlemen next to her were in intense conversation. Something about the church the older man a retired Bishop, The younger in mid x50’s talked about the bishops daughter, an apparently wonderful woman.

She tried to get online but there were 4 EMT s who seem to be sapping the juice to the Internet. Hopefully it was something important. She glanced again their way to seeing one man playing bejeweled blitz …she supposed that they needed a break from their very intensive work. She would wait.

Lunch came, good as before, and she ate with slowness attempting to savior her sandwich not just eat it so fast that it is forgettable. There was a glare from the window of a car backing out that flashed bright in the window, A ray of sunshine inside amazing.

several people noticed it and were surprised. We shared a collective smile

The upcoming Sunday’s readings were on her mind. Them men next to her began talking about church stuff. She could

T comprehend the flow of it but bits and pieces were heard…you taught me so well Bishop and how do you learn to do an exorcism?

Time for a refill. Friends had laughed at her last week when she got a piece of bread pudding and a diet coke… She recognized the

Strangeness of that combination. they had all laughed and the bread pudding lasted three days…

A friend from 8 years ago had met her that morning before lunch…just a little time before her plane…so they jumped into real deep conversation quickly, Their memories of where they had been together were the same. They were both happy to be gone from there but missed some of the really dear people. Those who had been mean or betrayed them were not missed though they obviously had left strong impressions in pain. The two of them prayed for healing. It was good to share.

Not long from now she has a new yoga class. She decides this would be a good time for a nap. One more refill and home she goes to be greeted again by her puppy always happy to see her.

God abides

Lucky? Me

Dear Friends,

I have been thinking of you all today and pray this finds you well. It has been a week.

Friday musing

All of a sudden, as the saying goes, I realized that I am really lucky. Blessed some would say but I’ll go for lucky right now. Why? Why? I hear you ask… because I have had the experience of the presence of God with me in ways that are completely real.

Betsy was having surgery on her strabismus when she was 11 months old. We found a wonderful, wonderful doctor named Elizabeth Sowa. We had taken Betsy in and she said, “Well you are just a darling beauty of a little girl, lets get those eyes so they work together.”. And she tickled Betsy’s toes. I said, “Ok, You can do the surgery on my daughter.”

As the time came for the surgery we could either come in the morning it was done or spend the night before in the hospital. We lived over an hour to the hospital and we had to be in really early so she and I spent the night. The real trick was that I couldn’t nurse Betsy after midnight and keeping her from getting upset about that might have been tricky. The crib had really high bars on the side and I had a rocking chair, thank God. Betsy got a little fussy so I took her out of the crib and rocked her… the rest of the night as I prayed and prayed and prayed.

The room we shared with a little boy whose mother gave him Dr. Pepper and he was not quiet. The little boy had his surgery the day before but was supposed to be still. They brought his breakfast and that made Betsy really hungry so I took her out. The Doctor came in to see the little boy and saw him jumping. “You can’t let him do that,” he admonished the mother, “we talked about this” . I said as I passed ‘Well, it might be the Dr. Pepper she gave him when he woke up”. The doctor glanced at me and pointed to the can by the bed.

Betsy and I found an outdoor patio and it was really peaceful out there. I just held her and walked and walked and walked and walked and talked to her and tried to distract her from wanting to nurse. We were out there for an hour.

As the time grew closer for her surgery I really got anxious. Then to my mind came this gift, Bobbie, your mom and dad are praying and they are in Virginia, your aunt and uncle in Chicago are praying, your cousins spread out all over, your church members are praying…

and as if ribboned streamers were drifting into the area from all directions, I felt overwhelmed with peace. It was like the prayers were visible. I felt them. Anxiousness left. (Add deep sigh).

I went inside and John had arrived and it was about time for her surgery. The gentle nurse came to take her and I handed her to John to hand over to the nurse. No give her back her eyes are ok I was saying in my head.

We went down to wait. Hours passed. Hours Hours Hours.. Well really it was just about one hour but time was skewed. The Doctor came out ..big smile on her face, “ It went really well. We had trouble starting an iv. but she was asleep when we were poking her for that. I am really pleased.”

We went down to the door outside recovery. We could hear her crying, well screaming, and we weren’t allowed in. Finally a nurse came out and ask for McGarey’s. They said one of you can go in and perhaps that will calm her.

John went. I waited, immediately her crying stopped.

They brought her out and though she was still some groggy she was as ready to nurse as I was to nurse her. Again we settled in the rocking chair. A few hours later the Dr. came in to check her out and we went home.

I’ve tried to share that sense of this Godly presence so many times. That real palpable feeling of peace that just rushed in and washed over me. I’m lucky. I can remember that time and the peace returns. Yes I am lucky, blessed.

Bobbie Giltz McGarey

August 17, 2018


They came through town …

A message was sent around via friends and churches that a group, two busses,  of the detainees were coming briefly to ABQ.   I got the message Friday and announced on Sunday an opportuniy to my church people.  The mostly men in the group needed ..well… everything as they were being let out of detention and taken to reunite with their children.  We were asked to provide what we could, clothes, backpacks, shoelaces,  snacks, stuffed animals, small portable toys…

A friend was part of the group helping to coordinate and organize this effort By Tuesday  said they had all they needed from folks all over.   They donated any leftovers to local sheltears.

When the busses pulled up a group of tired, frightened, suspicious, and curious  men got off not knowing what  was going to happen next.   When it was explained that the good hearted folk  of Albuquerque had provided all of these things for them, a good hot meal, supplies they needed, all of the basics, they were thrilled, .   They had not been told here they were going or that there were plans to get them together with their children.

A different group of men reborded the bus.  They were fed, clothed, relaxed, smiling more,and much more relaxed,  in a few hours they would be with their kids.


One man said as he got on the bus,  This is the America I expected when I left home, I am happy finally to have found her,

Friends, much work to be done.

God abide



Stravinsky: Petrouchka

I’ve missed you all hope you are well.

When I was a senior in high school and president of the drama club, the Jesters, I was called one morning by our teacher and asked to go to the Columbus Ohio board of education office to spend the day as the radio announcer for the Board’s radio station. My mom took me down and I was to be picked up at 4. I walked into the building and was hustled up to the small studio, introduced to the director, and then given a notebook with page by page things to read between the music that was played.
I sat down and off I went. It was fun for the most part. The director was a kindly man and we would chat in between the numbers. This day was their Classical Music day. Which really presented few challenges but I thought after a while I should read ahead in the script and see if there was anything I couldn’t or didn’t know how to pronounce. And there I saw it. Petrouchka.
I asked the director how to pronounce that and he said…don’t know. So I did a couple of more breaks and when the next recording started I went down the hall to find someone to pronounce this for me. I had 4 minutes. So I walked here and there in the offices and asked folk how to pronounce it. No one knew. I did this several times. But as we were approaching that piece the director smiled, chuckled, and said. Well good luck.

I pronounced it the best I could. I could see the director laughing in the other room. After the
piece started I said…Oh my what did I say? He was still laughing. I had to recover from laughing with him to make the next announcement about a happening with the school board and
a play being put on in one of the high schools.

When the break came the phone rang in the directors booth. I could hear him say, her name is Bobbie Giltz, ….she’s a senior at Whetstone, ….she said it right?! …thank you for letting us know.

A teacher from one of the schools had called in apparently amazed that what ever it was I said in pronouncing “Petrouchka” was right. Then the director and I did laugh.

The day went on and 3:45 came and I was leaving to meet my Mom when the director told me it was really a fun day for him

.All too often we don’t take risks. Risks in sharing our faith, or helping a stranger, or doing something bold outside our usual expectations. Step out friends today and take a risk. Use the brains God gave you to make a difference in the world. Look at a mystery before you and take a chance that you can ‘say’ it just right as well. And laugh….You may just get it right.
God abide with you
Bobbie Giltz McGarey

that in-between

So Friends, here we are in that in between time in the Church yearly cycle.  We celebrated the joy of Easter, of the Resurrection,  of the New Life promise revealed…

and we wait for Pentecost.

So, In the scriptures in the Gospel of John chapter 20 Jesus goes into the room that was locked because the disciples were afraid.  “Peace be with you.”   That should be enough.  God’s peace brought to you by God’s son.   Then he breathes on them.  This breath of life, foreshadowing the coming of the Holy Spirit.  But Jesus fills the disciples with the  assignment to go and be about the work of the Kingdom that they had witnessed up close.   Now it’s up to you.

Wait, wait, I hear you say.  Up to me?  I don’t think so.  Well God thinks so. God knows so.

In this Inbetween—time we come to discern what it is we will do when we are reminded how all are touched by the Holy Spirit.

But its not easy when there are things that are exciting and frightening.   There are missles flying toward one another without a certainty that this is the right thing to do to a country and a people already living in rubble.  True, there are leaders who are killing their own people.  A change  of those who care for power not people

Somehow  we still live in hope that peace, Christ’s Peace can overcome even this chaos in our world.   We are all so hopeful that miracles can happen.  That people can listen to and love one another…Like Jesus told the disciples…all disciples to love one another.  What would that look like in the world?  I hope I know.

Psalm 27 has a line…”I believe that I shall see the goodness of the Lord in the land of the living”. “Wait for the Lord; be strong, and take courage; wait for the Lord!”

Insert deep sigh and read those verses again and again until you find peace. 

God Abides and I thank God

Bobbie Giltz McGarey

April 14, 2018

currently in Bethlehem, PA


Ian Maurice Metzgar April 1, 2018

Continue reading “that in-between”