Bob Rice

An internationally famous speaker, musician, and writer, Bob Rice looks at the beautiful and the bizarre of life through a Catholic perspective. Also includes articles and excerpts from books he's working on.

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Location: Steubenville, Ohio, United States

My desire is to share the love of God to everyone I meet through the many gifts God has given me. My full time job is teaching evangelization and youth ministry at Franciscan University of Steubenville, OH. About two or three times a week I travel around the country proclaiming God's word or do a concert/lead worship. I've published many articles and I'm working on my first novel. 12 years ago, I married the love of my life and now we have 5 beautiful children. You can find out more about me and download lots of free stuff on my webpage-

Wednesday, September 26, 2007

The Renaissance Fair

As time goes on, I feel like I'm doing more and more stuff that Weird Al talks about on the "White and Nerdy" song.

Was a Champion in D&D? Check.

MC Esher is my favorite MC? Check.

All of my action figures are cherry? Check.

X-men comics, you know I collect them? Check.

My ergonomic keyboard never leaves me bored? Check.

Memorized The Holy Grail? Mostly.

Only question I ever thought was hard was do I like Kirk or do I like Picard? Double check.

Spent my weekend at the renaissance fair? As of this weekend, check.

To be fair (or fare), I was invited by James and Kate Pauley, some friends of mine from FUS. We looked on line, and it seemed to be a fun thing to do as a family. It was a beautiful day, and we had a good time.

Until the end. They had a jousting thing that was pretty exciting. It was an evil french knight who fought the good Christian english knight. The french knight taunted the english knight, saying he depended too much on faith and goodness and that weakness would kill him. The English knight responded that he did depend on faith and faith would save him.

A battle ensued, and the English knight won, but was willing to spare the French guy. Then the French guy cheated, knocked him down, and slit his throat with blood spurting out!!! I couldn't believe it. My children were stunned. Ellie kept saying, "He cheated! He cheated!" It looked convincing, they even carried him out on a stretcher. I had to convince them it was fake. Needless to say, it was a downer of an ending and probably the last renaissance fair we'll go to.

But other than the oddly tatooed folks, excessive violence, and "evil beating good" vibe, it was a pretty fun day.

Thursday, September 06, 2007

Space Camp!

Yes, it's true. Over labor day weekend, my son John and I went to Space Camp in Huntsville, Alabama.

How was it? In a word: AWESOME.

John had seen the advertisment in a Boy Scout magazine early this year. And every three years I try to take each of my kids on a "Daddy Special Trip". I was available this weekend and so was he (his schedule is a bit more flexible than mine), so I signed us up. I had heard of Space Camp, but had no idea what it was about. Of course, being a sci-fi fan I was excited to learn.

We showed up after some travel snags on Friday afternoon and missed the orientation. They broke all the campers into four groups, and we were in a group called "Team Redstone". As we waited for the group, I kept praying, "Oh please, let this be a cool group for John". My only other "space" type experience was at a Star Wars convention, and there were some serious nerds there (I'm not calling the kettle black, but a darker shade of grey. There's a difference! I'm not a nerd!).

I met the group, we took a team picture, and we were off. At first, I wasn't horribly impressed. Our shuttle simulations were not as exciting as I thought they'd be- but they were going for realism, not action. No aliens showed up and tried to take over the ship, nor was there a distress call from space and we had to answer because we were the closest ship there. Operations ran "nonimal".

But the weekend really grew on me for a number of reasons. I loved learning about the space program, and especially where it is going in the next 10 years. It was so facinating! I came home and immediately put "From the Earth to the Moon" on my Netflix que. We had a great councelor named Melissa from the weekend, and all the Space Camp were as friendly and as helpful as they could be. And we had a great team of parents and kids in our immediate group. Everybody got along, helped each other out, and encouraged each other. Not a "space nerd" in the group. Just folks who loved their kids. There were also people of great faith in our group, and know the Holy Spirit had his hand in putting us all together. It was a beautiful fellowship, and one of the highlights of the experience.

But the best thing about it was being with John. We built rockets together, climbed the rock wall together, just did everything together all weekend. He also had some big "breakthroughs" that weekend. There was this thing that simulated an out of control spin, and he immediately wasn't interested. John's a bit afraid of stuff like that and I could tell the moment I saw it he would never go for it. But we kept talking about it, and talked about overcoming fear. By the end of the weekend (and thanks to the wonderful councelors there) they cranked up the machine and he went for a spin. I could see he was so proud of himself for doing that! He cried and cried to leave the weekend, saying it was one of the best of his life. It certainly is one I will never forget.

So thank you Space Camp! And thanks to Team Redstone! You were a special part of something my son and I will never forget.

I'm already working on my 7 year old to go in another year...