Catholic Interest

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    Friday, June 29, 2007

    Left Right, Right Wrong; More education please.

    I watched an hour of "All American Presidential Forum" on PBS last night.

    It was from Howard University, all Black, all Democrat. It will be an interesting 8 years for sure.

    Hillary got the only standing ovation when she said...

    "Let me just put this in perspective: If HIV-AIDS were the leading cause of death of white women between the ages of 25 and 34 there would be an outraged, outcry in this country,".

    Well yes, they would stop having sex with strangers I suppose, and test their partner in case HIV snuck in some other way.

    Stopping having sex like barn animals was not an option voiced. Supposing that they were ignorant of HIV's causes was.. and of course, more education is called for. I think a dime pamplet could explain the situation.

    What the Dems want is the money we now spend on war to be spent on education. Get it??? MORE EDUCATION. Apparently no one is getting educated. There was no advice though regarding what will replace the need for war. Just quit it I suppose.

    They are high high high on education. Since studies show that early education improves later results, they have applied their thinking to extrapolate this to education starting at birth. A few thought that 4 year olds gotta get to school. A few others countered that that is not nearly early enough... it must start at birth by educating the parents. Birth to grave, they will be there for us.

    Without exception they didn't like that day's Supreme Court decision regarding forced placement at schools based on race. Having one's race determine which school they attend is still very important to them.

    One mentioned that a Dem in the White House would surely be able to stuff the court with liberals again.

    And who is that guy from Alaska? He wants to abolish Income Tax and legalize marywanna. I happen to agree with him, but with half a percent in the polls, I don't think it's going to happen.

    Oh yes, and all agreed that there are too many Blacks in prison, and mandatory sentences need to be mitigated. I agree too. But I could never vote for these folks.

    New Bishop story

    Here's a nice story from Archbishop Terrence Prendergast's installation
    He told a story from an 1856 book written not long after the founding of the diocese called The Christian Life by Thomas Arnold, who wrote that some converts from heathenism and ignorance, “were accustomed to leave their right arm unbaptized” to that this arm, not pledged to Christ, might continue to wreak revenge.

    “This is a great image: these warriors going into the waters of baptism with their arms held high, holding back something of their life from being immersed in God,” Archbishop Prendergast said, noting the story “contains a great message of challenge to me and to you, to all of us.”

    The priest who had told Archbishop Prendergast about this book and the story it contained had confessed it had been easy for him to tithe while on a parish priest’s salary, but far more difficult when he moved into a new salary bracket at a university. That priest asked him to imagine his upraised, unbaptized hand holding his wallet.

    “Each of us could, no doubt, discover an area in our following of Jesus that still is incomplete, where we have not yet completely surrendered to the author of life,” he said.

    Archbishop Prendergast said Christian disciples need encouragement to “embrace the implications of following a crucified redeemer, whose death and resurrection, offering new life, alone sets us free.”

    “There are aspects of our lives where we would prefer that the gospel call did not enter, or not yet at any rate,” he said.
    The big "not yet".
    Bishop Dolan also said as he began his Milwaukee assignment, that his mission was to make us all Saints. I was immediately impressed. At least it implied there may be some of us who were not Saints.
    Both these Bishops see some difference between being holy, and not. I would think they might add that there are some ramifications to being holy or not, both here and in the hereafter, yet they don't.
    The only homily I can recall that mentioned the difference was at the Shrine in D.C.. The Priest had us look up at the mosaic of the Last Judgement, and notice the sheep and the goats.
    He also pointed out that the artist had gotten who would be on Christ's right hand vs. left backwards compared to the Gospel teaching. It's as if when we look to last things, we are lately surrounded by confusion.
    Confusion could explain the silence. Better to give them hope vs. brimstone, and let the Lord sort things out.
    It clearly was not like this for 1,900 years. Last things were always before us. I would only add that in my small experience, whenever confusion reigns it reigns intensely. Which is something I would expect if caused by that Liar from the beginning.
    Is it really all fluff? Are all the many admonitions directly from Jesus in the Gospel regarding the seemingly few that will enter the Kingdom hyperbole? We seem to have the attitude that he was like our parents warning us that if we ran with a stick we'd poke our eye out.
    This mark of confusion, from the Shrine's artist, to the homilies of silence would serve the Devil well. That Liar.
    God have mercy if that Last Judgement is just. Not only the Mercy that surrounds us every minute down here, but a lot extra then.
    Life is not fair, and we'd better hope the afterlife is not fair also.

    Thursday, June 28, 2007

    Raging Railroads

    Not much Catholic news today, but this is kinda interesting re: who can you trust.

    Doesn't seem like you can trust the Railroad with your well being. Even when they are not de-railing.


    PHOENIX -- A 65-year-old St. Louis man is missing after Amtrak personnel, mistaking his diabetic shock for drunk and disorderly behavior, kicked him off a train in the middle of a national forest, according to police in Williams, Ariz.

    "He was let off in the middle of a national forest, which is about 800,000 acres of beautiful pine trees," Lt. Mike Graham said.

    Police said there is no train station or running water at the crossing, which is about two miles from the nearest road, at an elevation of about 8,000 feet.

    Amtrak personnel told police dispatchers that Sims was drunk and unruly. The Sims family said Sims is diabetic and was going into shock.

    Sims' brother, Brian Mason, said his family tried to call Sims on his cell phone that night, but Sims was incoherent.

    When officers arrived at the crossing, police said, Sims ran into the woods, leaving his luggage and medication behind.

    Tuesday, June 26, 2007

    Better PR needed

    Is it just me, or does this look not too cool?

    I think the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops and the Catholic Communication Campain can do a lot better.

    It seems like they put those boring homilies on a billboard. Be nice, and so what?


    Monday, June 25, 2007

    Can we talk?

    How about intoxication.

    When I was in grade school, the nuns stressed that in biblical times, wine was drunk regularly because water was scarce. They said this was not wine you could get drunk on, but more like grape juice.

    Nowadays I think they were telling a little white lie. Starting way back with Noah, folks got drunk. It’s part of life. It’s almost natural, although the grape juice does have to be processed to make it intoxicating. And it’s important. The wine used at Mass must be the good stuff. Not grape juice, but intoxicating wine.

    Jesus is real, the Last Supper is real, and the wine’s gotta be real. I love it.

    Early in the 20th Century, a believable thing happened. While our boys were ‘over there’ fighting the Hun, the folks at home decided to suppress intoxicating brew to make us all healthier, happier, and painfully sober.

    After a while an unbelievable thing happened, the constitution was amended to repeal the nonsense. Actually it made very much sense in a non-human insane type of way. But it just didn’t fit the human experience. In retrospect the whole experiment was amazing.

    Now to get to the point, there is a natural plentiful plant supplied by God for great ropes and wonderful mild intoxication. Unlike wine, it does not need to be processed, and although it is usually smoked, it can just as easily be eaten if there is enough supply to be extravagant. When not smoked, unlike wine’s action on the liver, it has no known adverse physical side effects.

    It is widely used, although technically illegal for the last 70 years. One of those things so widespread, that the government can only afford to go after suppliers vs. the vast number of users past or present.

    How did such a nice plant get to be illegal? Through a dislike of Mexicans, Blacks and threatening unemployment.

    The huge bureaucracy of anti-alcohol government agents were faced without a needful purpose or mission after prohibition was repealed. The solution was to turn them loose against the weed which had always been popular with Mexicans and could be found in the U.S. cities among the Blacks.

    As proof how ill informed, or just how evil the propagandists were, you can watch the 1936 infomercial “Reefer Madness”, a constant source of amusement for the 60’s crowd.

    Video Link

    OK, since pleasure is hard to defend, what’s the big deal? The big deal is the forever failing and destructive U.S.A. war on drugs, which unfortunately includes the beloved weed.

    The prohibition has the side effect of death, crime, corruption. Mexico is the mess it is largely because drug crime infiltrates all levels of government. And the weed being illegal is a giant agent in this debacle.

    I propose we discuss this in the light of day, and get rid of the prohibition.

    It would be very pleasurable, wipe out the cause of much crime in Mexico, be a great source of new ‘sin tax’, and make my trips to the gas station for cigarettes more meaningful. I’m sure there will be a great display of weed brands, along side the Winstons and Copenhagen.


    Mexico temporarily removed all 284 of its top federal police officers from their jobs and is forcing them to prove they will not be corrupted in the fight against drug trafficking, the government announced Monday.

    In a rare acknowledgment of the gravity of violence related to drug trafficking, Mexico's top domestic security official, Interior Secretary Francisco Ramirez, recently said the government had lost control before President Felipe Calderon launched the current offensive.

    The heavily armed drug gangs are blamed for more than 1,300 deaths this year, including dozens of decapitations. Calderon responded by sending out more than 24,000 soldiers and federal police to battle the traffickers, and by ordering the creation of an elite military special operations force capable of surgical strikes.

    The Calderon administration insists the crackdown is working. More than 1,000 gunmen have been detained, and millions of dollars in marijuana plants burned.

    Extravagant home

    The traveling exhibit of Papal things came to the local museum. Jewels, crowns, chalices, gold threaded vestments.

    I heard, and I'm sure many people thought, it was a sign that the Catholic Church is rich and the money would be better spent on the poor.

    And this regardless of Jesus defending the woman in the Gospel, pouring that expensive perfume on him, to the complaining apostles.

    Recently in Mexico, some small town took lots of that money that immigrants send back from the U.S.A., and completed a beautiful church. The mayor thought the money should be spent on a much needed sewer system. The people interviewed leaving Mass seemed well pleased with their building efforts.

    The Basilica of the National Shrine of the Immaculate Conception in Washington D.C. is just amazing. Built from contributions from classroom coin bottles and average folks, and rich folks during the 20th century.

    The Bible has a lot to say about giving alms to the poor, not spending money on the poor.

    The rich man was told if he wanted to be perfect, first give all to the poor, then follow. It's the giving, not the spending that eases the condition of the poor and involves the holiness of the giver. It even seems to me that the holiness of the giver is the Bible's first concern, and the state of the poor the second concern.

    If I should again be around that argument of the Church being rich, being better off selling its properties and giving to the poor, I will use the argument of the holiness of the giver being the first concern. And mention that any wealth the Church possesses came from givers to the glory of God.

    The poor's situation is eased by love, which might involve money, and might not.


    Six Italian mosaicists suspended 100 feet above the ground last week pasted thumbnail-sized Venetian glass on the ceiling of the Basilica of the National Shrine of the Immaculate Conception in Northeast, guided only by an artist's rendition of what the finished project should look like.

    The workers will place nearly 2.4 million of the colored glass tiles — each less than an inch in length and width — transforming 3,780 square feet of plain, gray ceiling into a mosaic depicting four scenes from the life of Jesus Christ.

    The artwork, which will cover the ceilings of the three domes of the basilica, has been 40 years in the making — from gathering donations, drawing up plans and hiring artists. When completed, the mosaics will fulfill the original vision of Bishop Thomas Shahan, who oversaw the construction of the shrine nearly 85 years ago.

    Saturday, June 23, 2007

    Right and Wrong; Crying changes everything

    Men are generally crying more and more lately, or so I hear, and so I see on TV and PBS.

    Do you think it was like that with George Washington, Lincoln, Hoover, Roosevelt, JFK, your male ancestors pre 1970?

    But it is more than plausible with Clinton, both Bush boys, and the foreseeable future.

    If our dappled men in government cross from analysis to public crying which is something close to the temporary insanity of grief, what do we get?

    We get what we got I'm afraid.


    ALBANY, N.Y. -- It is a rare day in the state Legislature _ perhaps once or twice a decade _ when a debate keeps members in their seats listening intently to their colleagues. It happened Tuesday evening as the state Assembly took up the difficult issue of same-sex marriage. The often emotional three-hour debate showed many at their best.

    For five minutes, Teresa Sayward spoke to the hushed chamber about her son.

    About his coming home from elementary school and asking what "fag" and "queer" meant. " My son didn't want to be different. Lord knows, he wanted to change," she recalled. "So I consulted the church. I read everything I could. I read the Bible. I read white papers on this issue. Surely, I could make him normal," said Sayward.

    He also tried. He got a girlfriend in high school. It helped for a while, she said. His classmates were more accepting. Then he went to college. There were drugs and questions about identity.

    "When he would come home on the weekend, we would spend long nights crying together and talking," she said.

    "One night, I said to him, `You have to be who you are. You can't be what people think you should be.' "And he said to me, `But Mom, I want to be normal. I want to have a house and a fence and a dog and children and I want to be successful,"' Sayward said. "He did decide with us _ with his family, with his father and I _ that he would be who he was. And, he became much happier in life," she said.

    "I'm happy to report that my son has the house and the fence and the dog. And, he's raised two wonderful young men."

    "Let's search our hearts tonight and do the right thing and vote for the civil rights and the human rights of all of the people that we represent and give them the right to marry the people they love just like I had the right, 43 years ago, to marry my husband," Sayward pleaded.

    The applause went on for a full 20 seconds.

    "The tears were streaming down my face," said one veteran Democratic Assembly employee.

    Exciting and intense, tears and grief.

    Now for the boring analysis of right and wrong. No applause is noted.

    Brian Kolb spoke of "the nuns who taught me in grammar school" and his marriage in the Catholic Church. " I do feel threatened. I do feel harmed in terms of what you are trying to do with this particular bill because it's a direct challenge to me and how I was brought up," said the Canandaigua Republican as he came out against "a bill that tears at my very soul."

    "I might be over-dramatizing, but I truly fear we are witnessing the twilight of our modern civilization," said Bronx Democrat Michael Benjamin as he voted with Kolb against the measure even while declaring his love "for my gay brother."

    Dierdre Scozzafava of St. Lawrence County told her Assembly colleagues "the politically easiest thing" for her would be to vote against the measure and support civil unions for gays. But the Gouverneur Republican said that four days earlier she had sat with a good friend "and he explained to me why that did not provide him equal protection under the law." "What might be the easiest thing for me to do tonight, is not the right thing," she said.

    Celebrate multicultural diversity

    Quick, name a muslim country you would consider vacationing to for the multicultural experience..... nope, I couldn't think of one either.

    Oh I know, it's the dancing and ethnic foods that we most think of when we say multicultural appreciation.

    Wait, I don't know if dancing is allowed in Pakistan. I do know they have the bomb. I can really appreciate that little genie that got out of the bottle.

    When the British drew the lines that separated India and Pakistan I think they did a pretty good job. The only multicultural area left was Kashmir, and even that is 95% muslum.

    Kashmir is the flashpoint for the future nuclear war. Perhaps India better let Pakistan have it so that sharia justice may prevail. You know, amputation and such; the kind muslums would like for themselves in places like the UK.

    Maybe they use holy sabers when cutting off pieces of a person instead of these advanced tools displayed here... another thing I don't know and will not travel to find out.


    A full bench of the Federal Shariat Court (FSC) on Friday declared awarding a sentence of limb amputation without Tazkiya Al-Shahood (two witnesses) un-Islamic, and set aside the limb amputation sentence awarded to a convict by a trial court in a robbery case.

    During the hearing of an appeal, the FSC bench said that if judges continued awarding sentences without fulfilling the condition of Tazkiya Al-Shahood, thousands of robbers in Karachi would lose their hands and legs due to the increasing incidents of robberies there.

    Noor Alam Khan said the additional district and sessions judge had convicted Ajab on January 26 and sentenced him under Section 17(3) of the Offence against Property (Enforcement of Hudood) Ordinance, 1979. He said that a trial court had ordered that his (Ajab) right hand from the wrist and left foot from the ankle be cut off. He said the court had also awarded a five-year imprisonment and a Rs 30,000 fine to the appellant.

    Alam said the trial court had erred while sentencing the appellant under Hadd as the condition of Tazkiya Al-Shahood had not been fulfilled. He referred to Section 7 of the ordinance, arguing that the proof of an offence liable to Hadd was in two forms: either the accused should plead guilty to the offence or at least two Muslim adult male witnesses should give evidence as eyewitnesses of the occurrence. He said the witnesses should be truthful people and should have abstained from the major sins.

    Friday, June 22, 2007

    Gitmo blockage

    The people of the U.S.A. have had a mental blockage regarding the Guantanamo Bay prison.

    Over these past years, we have all known something is wrong with putting prisoners on foreign soil to keep them away from American Justice. But we have been immobileized from action or serious uproar.

    Now after Bush and Congress are at their lowest public ratings, people from all over, including Bush, are taking action. We have been slow as molasses.

    For this shame, history will judge us badly. But I bet we will repeat the actions again when we feel threatened in the future. Again under pressure we will default to reasoning that our leaders know best, especially in times of shooting. That default is something deep inside us which surfaces with stress, and practically allows quick action in turbulent times. As such the leaders deserve most of the future blame game.

    But for now we are quiet still, not knowing how to explain ourselves in the light of day.


    Senior administration officials said Thursday a consensus is building for a proposal to shut the center and transfer detainees to one or more Defense Department facilities, including the maximum-security military prison at Fort Leavenworth, Kan., where they could face trial.

    Cheney's office and the Justice Department have been against the step, arguing that moving "unlawful" enemy combatant suspects to the U.S. would give them undeserved legal rights.

    Rice has said she would like to see Guantanamo closed if a safe alternative could be found. She said during a trip to Spain this month that the United States "doesn't have any desire to be the world's jailer." "I don't think anyone wants to see Guantanamo open one day longer than it is needed. But I also suspect nobody wants to see a number of dangerous people simply released out onto the streets," she said.

    On Thursday, two Democratic lawmakers, Rep. Alcee Hastings of Florida and Sen. Benjamin Cardin of Maryland, told a human rights commission that Guantanamo must be closed if the United States is to regain credibility and authority on human rights.

    "The damage done to the United States goes beyond undermining our status as a global leader on human rights," Cardin said. "Our policies and practices regarding Guantanamo and other aspects of our detainee policies have undermined our authority to engage in the effective counterterrorism measures that are necessary for the very security of this country."

    Earlier this month, former Secretary of State Colin Powell called for the immediate closure of the prison, saying it posed an untenable foreign policy risk and was irreparably harming the U.S. image abroad.

    Sen. John Kerry, D-Mass., said in statement that "removing the stain Guantanamo has left on our foreign policy" is long overdue. "It also goes a long way toward returning America's moral authority in the world and addressing the mistakes which have set us back in the fight against terrorism," said Kerry, the Democrats' 2004 presidential candidate.

    Thursday, June 21, 2007

    Rape ruse

    It's hard not to like Amnesty International, unless you're a fan of Gitmo and those secret prisons the USA used in Poland after 9/11.

    Lately, AI is getting on the abortion bandwagon, and using rape and women's health (like our famous Supreme Court) as the excuse.


    Until this year, Amnesty International was officially neutral on the issue of abortion. In April, the group’s executive board decided to drop that neutrality. Now, the group will promote access to abortion for women who are victims of rape and for women whose life or health is endangered by pregnancy.

    Widney Brown, Amnesty International’s senior director of international law, policy and campaigns, said that discussion about the new abortion policy began more than two years ago, after Amnesty International became involved in a global campaign to stop violence against women.

    But Austin Ruse, president of the Catholic Family & Human Rights Institute (C-FAM), said Brown’s argument that rape justifies access to abortion has been used routinely by pro-abortion lobbyists since the 1990s.

    Ruse said international abortion lobbyists use subterfuges like the rape issue to try to promote abortion as a “human right” because “they cannot come right out and win an up-or-down vote on abortion, even using extreme circumstances, at the United Nations.”

    Ruse also rejected Brown’s claim that Amnesty International only recently began considering whether to promote abortion rights.

    Ruse said that Amnesty International representatives at the United Nations have supported pro-abortion initiatives for a number of years.

    According to Amnesty International’s Web site, “AI’s vision is of a world in which every person enjoys all of the human rights enshrined in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and other international human-rights standards.”

    However, abortion is not mentioned in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights or in any other internationally recognized human-rights document. And the preamble of the Convention of the Rights of the Child, one of the United Nations’ foremost human rights documents, states, “The child … needs special safeguards and care, including appropriate legal protection, before as well as after birth.”

    Brown conceded that the right to abortion is not “expressly” enshrined in international human rights.

    But she argued that the “right to health” of the pregnant woman trumps the unborn child’s right to life.

    “Her right to health and the right to the quality of life that she needs and the healing that she needs, this is what we would say should be the priority,” Brown said.

    Brown also cited a World Health Organization estimate that 68,000 women die annually as a result of unsafe abortions.

    “Once we looked at that figure, neutrality would have meant essentially saying it’s OK that 68,000 women a year die because of criminalization of abortion,” Brown said.

    Brownie forgets to mention that 68,000 babies also die along with their mothers as the result of the free will choice of these moms to kill their little ones.

    Wednesday, June 20, 2007

    This is what it smells like

    America the mob.

    No Christ, no manners, TV as a role model, isolated sexual objects, no parents, no future.

    Of course it could happen for some reason not yet revealed; Christ, manners, parents as role models, private loving married sex, and a future.


    David Rivas Morales died Tuesday from injuries sustained in an assault by an unknown number of black men following the car accident, which occurred in the parking lot of an East Austin apartment complex, police said.

    "It doesn't seem to be a hate crime, it really seems to be a spontaneous act resulting from that collision with that child," Harold Piatt, the commander of the Austin Police Department's Robbery Homicide Unit. "We don't know if there were any words exchanged between the driver and the men to start with that escalated this to the assault."

    "The driver, for whatever reason, whether he realized he was involved in the collision or his vehicle forced a stop, got out of the car, got into a confrontation with several men and was assaulted," Piatt said.

    Morales came to his aid and was fatally attacked in what police are calling a "spontaneous homicide." He was pronounced dead at a local hospital.

    The driver was able to get back into his car and drive away. Both he and his vehicle have been located, Piatt said, but he declined to release the driver's identity because the man is a witness in an ongoing investigation.

    "We could have had anywhere from two to 15 and 20 [people] who are actually involved in the assault," Piatt said. Some 2,000 to 3,000 people were gathered in the parking lot at the time.
    The child was treated for non-life-threatening injuries at Brackenridge Hospital.

    Monday, June 18, 2007

    Insensitive West

    First the obligatory correctness...
    "It is simply untrue to suggest that this in anyway is an insult to islum or the Prophet Muhammed, and we have enormous respect for Islam as a religion and for its intellectual and cultural achievements," Brinkley said.
    The the living and breathing reality behind the correctness...
    Lawmakers in Paki-stan's lower house of parliament on Monday passed a resolution proposed by Minister for Parliamentary Affairs Sher Afgan Khan Niazi, who branded Rushdie a "blasphemer." He said the honor had hurt the sentiments of Muslims across the world.
    "This is an occasion for the (world's) 1.5 billion Muslims to look at the seriousness of this decision," Mohammed Ijaz ul-Haq, religious affairs minister, later said in parliament.
    "The West is accusing Muslims of extremism and terrorism. If someone exploded a bomb on his body he would be right to do so unless the British government apologizes and withdraws the 'sir' title," ul-Haq said.
    Is this a joke or is this guy unaware of his twisted logic? Just what brand of civilization has desended upon these 1.5 billion folks? Not the brand to show up at a debate, but just right for the "celebratory arms fire" they are so fond of.
    "This queen has made a mockery of Muslims by giving him a title of 'sir.' Salman Rushie was condemned by Imam Khomeni and he issued a decree about his death. He should be handed over to the Muslims so they can try him according to Islamic laws," he said.

    Iran's late spiritual leader, Ayatollah Khomeini, issued a 1989 fatwa, or religious edict, ordering Muslims to kill the author because "The Satanic Verses" allegedly insulted Islam. The threat forced Rushdie to live in hiding for a decade.
    Nice peaceful folks.

    Middle East nest of fire

    Dialogue in the Middle East conjures up thoughts of Jimmy Carter. Yet it is still true that after all this time, Egypt has remained non-combative with Israel.

    Now we have the Gaza Strip, Iran, Iraq, and lesser threats. Who could work such a thing as dialogue now?

    No one comes to mind, but the Holy Father reminds us that we are all missing the point. There is only one solution, yet no one has any vision for bringing it forth.

    I bet it's only through prayer, and God Help Us, seems an appropriate one.


    Benedict said he considered it his duty in Francis's birthplace -- "this city of peace" -- to make "a pressing and heartfelt appeal so that all the armed conflicts that bloody the earth may cease, so that weapons may go silent and so that, everywhere, hate gives way to love, offense to forgiveness, and discord to union."

    "We feel spiritually close to all those who weep, who suffer, and who die because of war and its tragic consequences in whatever part of the world," the pope said at the end of Mass in a courtyard below the Basilica of St. Francis, which houses the saint's tomb.

    "Our thoughts go in a special way to the Holy Land, beloved by St. Francis, to Iraq, to Lebanon, to the entire Middle East," the pontiff said. "The populations of those places have known, for too long, the horrors of fighting, of terrorism, of blind violence, the illusion that force can resolve conflicts."

    "Only responsible and sincere dialogue, backed by the generous support of the international community, can put an end to so much sorrow and restore life and dignity," Benedict sad.

    Sunday, June 17, 2007


    Crystal Ball humor.


    First of all, I must denounce, in the strongest possible terms, the anti-Islamic bigotry that animates much of the resistance to the establishment of nationwide Sharia Law in the United States.

    It is my position (and the Synod of Bishops supports me entirely here) that such resistance is both sinful and counterproductive. Sinful, first of all, because it is symptomatic of two of the greatest of all transgressions -- racism and religious bigotry.

    Counterproductive because it is rooted in a basic misconception concerning the very nature of our faith. Christianity has always been a religion of the oppressed and the weak. (Not that I expect us to be oppressed under the enlightened rule of our good Muslim neighbors. Far be it from me to suggest such a thing.) Centuries of Christian domination in the world have left behind an unbroken record of tyranny and exploitation for which we can only ask forgiveness. (As a matter of fact, I intend to ask forgiveness when I am granted my first audience with the Grand Mufti of Detroit next month.)

    Saturday, June 16, 2007

    Party for Animals and Christian history

    I have wondered why the EU refuses to include a reference to it's Christian roots in its constitution.

    Now I see it is the result of the usual suspects. Perhaps all of Europe besides Poland has become pagan. But still, it is interesting to see who is behind the motions to suppress the "rabble-rousing".


    THE HAGUE, 10/04/07 - Premier Balkenende is not pushing for a reference to the Judaic-Christian tradition in the Declaration of Berlin to be adopted next week by EU member states.

    A newspaper reported last week that Balkenende would along with Poland push for such a reference. This report is inaccurate and "rabble-rousing," the premier said in the Lower House debate on last week's EU summit. He was thereby expressing irritation that some media apparently want to portray the cabinet as a heavily conservative-Christian club.

    Centre-left D66, supported by the leftwing Greens (GroenLinks) and the Party for Animals (PvdD), put forward a motion calling on the government to oppose references to religions and traditions in the declaration or in treaties.

    Labour (PvdA) did not support the motion. The party has no problem with a reference to religions in the Berlin Declaration. A reference to religions must however in no way whatsoever be included in an EU Treaty, according to PvdA MP Samsom.

    Only if the foundations of European values were after all named in the statement, then the Judaic-Christian tradition should not be missed in the series alongside Greek philosophy, Roman law, the Enlightenment and humanism. "That would be unhistorical," according to Balkenende.

    Now why would the Greens and the Party for Animals resist religion? It seems normal really if one believes that history starts now with me.

    Or even worse normal if religion is an enemy that needs to be abolished. Remember how the Romans would scratch out the names of past heros on statues and monuments if those past heros became politically out of favor?

    Perhaps this is nothing new for Europe after all. But anyway, 3 cheers for Poland who can still remember where they come from.

    Friday, June 15, 2007

    USA lady leads the way

    They have Rowan in England trying to keep things together...

    Williams said the U.S. wing would have been better off deciding first to approve ordaining clergy in same-sex relationships before consecrating Robinson.

    "As it is, someone living in a relationship not theologically officially approved by the church is elected to a bishop--I find that bizarre and puzzling," he said.

    Williams does not have the direct authority to force a solution on Anglican churches. However, he has decided not to invite Robinson to a once-a-decade global meeting of Anglican bishops, called the Lambeth Conference, which will be held next year.

    The Catholic Church's hierarchy is often talked about as being outdated, and it is suggested it should become more democratic. But led by the Holy Spirit it keeps things together. How the Anglicans have stayed together for these hundreds of years with no authority is amazing to me. I think it has something to do with them in the past having kept close to Rome, considering themselves only one degree separated from the larger Catholic Church. That has pretty much disappeared now.

    Williams also did not invite Bishop Martyn Minns, head of a U.S. network of breakaway Episcopal churches formed by the conservative Anglican Church of Nigeria to compete with the American denomination on its home turf.


    And they have the smirky USA lady bishop growing tired of waiting for the rest of the world to catch up to her enlightened views...

    A top Episcopal Church panel on Thursday turned down demands from overseas Anglican leaders to stop consecrating openly gay bishops and blessing same-sex unions.The 40-member Executive Council, headed by the presiding bishop, the Most Rev. Katharine Jefferts Schori, said such decisions could only be made at the U.S. church's triennial General Convention, to be held next in 2009.

    During a teleconference, Jefferts Schori suggested the "conversation" could continue at the U.S. bishops meeting in September in New Orleans.

    But the Rev. Canon Kendall S. Harmon, a conservative from South Carolina, said: "It's a clear rejection of any sense of commitment to the Communion."


    Ms. Katharine thinks it may take 50 years for the backward orthodox to change their minds and read Scripture re homosexuals as she says "as I read it". Waiting until 2009 is an installment toward that goal.

    But I doubt the orthodox Anglicans will wait a generation or two to settle things.

    "The era of justice and Islamic rule have arrived."

    Very bad news. I don't think that Israel can abide the Gaza Strip as a little Islum bloodground.
    Arab and Muslim states appealed for calm, warning that the fighting was threatening the Palestinian cause. The United States, Britain and the EU pledged continuing support for Mr Abbas, but his ability to lead the Palestinian Authority appeared damaged beyond repair.

    Wednesday, June 13, 2007

    Mother Teresa critics

    I have heard this same complaint about money and Mother Teresa's group before. I am guessing that the fact they have money in the bank is probably true.

    Mother's mission is caring, and the holiness it brings. If they have too much money, then I say so be it. The bank is the best place for it.

    Most reasonable people would say that with all the donations, the group should morph into something different and grand, for their sakes, and the sakes of their patients.

    But even when Mother was alive, she did not want that. She asked God for her needs, and established the mission. The fact that more money came in than she could use given her mission's structure may have confused her, but I think not.

    I think it's there for a rainy day, and will only be used eventually for exactly the purpose it was donated for.

    Here's an x-nun who didn't understand about the money, didn't understand how poverty like Mother's group can lead to holiness, and has become sour enough to call Mother a fraud.

    Apparently the almost 2,000 years of pre-Vatican II holiness are not to her liking.


    "Once a sister has accepted these fallacies she will do almost anything. She can allow her health to be destroyed, neglect those she vowed to serve, and switch off her feelings and independent thought. She can turn a blind eye to suffering, inform on her fellow sisters, tell lies with ease, and ignore public laws and regulations.

    Women from many nations joined Mother Teresa in the expectation that they would help the poor and come closer to God themselves. When I left, there were more than 3,000 sisters in approximately 400 houses scattered throughout the world. Many of these sisters who trusted Mother Teresa to guide them have become broken people. In the face of overwhelming evidence, some of them have finally admitted that their trust has been betrayed, that God could not possibly be giving the orders they hear. It is difficult for them to decide to leave - their self-confidence has been destroyed, and they have no education beyond what they brought with them when they joined. I was one of the lucky ones who mustered enough courage to walk away. "

    It is in the hope that others may see the fallacy of this purported way to holiness that I tell a little of what I know.

    Sunday, June 10, 2007

    Brownback.. I havn't heard anything bad yet

    I don't know if the political machine will deliver Sam as a viable candidate, but I havn't heard anything bad yet.

    It sure seems that we would get some honesty from anyone so plain as to question abortion for raped women. That's an area where nobody treads.

    We have such a sorry excuse for a Catholic in Wisconsin's Governor Jim Doyle.. the difference couldn't be more clear.


    "Rape is terrible. Rape is awful. Is it made any better by killing an innocent child? Does it solve the problem for the woman that's been raped?" the Kansas Republican asked at the St. Joseph's Covenant Keepers gathering.

    "We need to protect innocent life. Period," Brownback said, bringing the crowd of about 500 to its feet.

    Brownback also talked about keeping marriage between a man and a woman, saying nations that have allowed same-sex marriages were engaging in bad social experiments, with bad results.

    Saturday, June 09, 2007

    How nice

    Exactly. This article makes a good point. “It’s very easy for someone to vote for this amendment if they think of the gay person as the ‘other,’” he said.
    Given America's live and let live attitude, the winning move from homosexual activists will be to be nice. Then we're really likely to leave them alone to do what they do.
    As he says.. “If you actually talk to [straight] married people,” he said, “they don’t feel that their marriages are threatened, and they don’t feel that the institution is threatened.”.
    And as she says.. Should the amendment get on the ballot, there are many political arguments that can (and will) be made, but the most effective tool, she said, will be people telling their personal stories. “It’s one thing to hear about the issue,” she said. “It’s another thing to know someone. That makes the difference.”
    Getting to know them; not feeling threatened. This is not what these morals in question are about. And as you may notice, there is no discussion in the article about morals. That's not on their radar. It's feelings. It's rights. But you know it's all about morals to the people that want to stop this nonsense.
    And along with morals it's about the kids. These strange couples are pretty sure they would make great parents, or at least no worse than the hetrosexual marriages they try to mimic.
    Yes, except for the kids. Why get married if you don't want kids? Some old folks do, but mainly young marrieds keep kids in mind. And it's when we think of kids, then it's time to think hard about what these type of arrangements will do to the kids.
    We know it won't do nothing. And the something it will do, the Church calls child abuse. And when it comes to committed men doing what they do, I say again that we all know this is not where a too young boy belongs.
    Let's see what they think of kids... “We are a committed couple. We’ve been together for 10 years. Jamie’s a nurse practitioner; I’m a social worker. We do good things in society. We want to raise children.
    We do good things and we want to raise children. Yikes.
    One thing I will admit is that it is always harder to look someone in the eye who's being nice, and stick to right and wrong. So much easier to just let live and let live. But it's the kids, and will always be.
    I now pronounce you married.’” Ashley said. “To know that those words were legal, and legally binding words, was pretty incredible … Marriage is the way in our society that we give a lot of social and economic privileges, and to have that kind of security in my relationship with Jamie, as future parents, as homeowners, as partners, is huge.”
    And when they have a baby, sometime in the near future, they hope, they will still have to take additional legal precautions, like second- parent adoption, to protect their family.
    Now having a baby is of course impossible for a really good reason. But they will call it having a baby by taking anonymous sperm or taking someone else's baby. Odd no? Very.
    So will we succumb to nice or remember right and wrong? If we keep the kids in mind it may help our decision.
    Oh and St. Anthony's shrine and it's nice lector? Not a place I would make a pilgramage to.
    At St. Anthony’s Shrine in Boston, where he is an active member and a lector, Pomfret said, and where the church’s position is that “all are welcome,” he has already started making his views on the subject clear. He has exchanged “cordial correspondence” with Cardinal O’Malley’s secretary, he said — though “essentially they’ve said they’re going to keep me in their prayers,” — and has talked to many fellow parishioners, both formally and informally.

    Thursday, June 07, 2007

    Pilate washes his hands

    Bishop Thomas Tobin teaches nicely.

    This is the first time I have heard the Catholic politicians compared to Pilate. I wish I would have seen that plain and present parallel.

    A Bishop's teaching chrism is something wonderful to behold when they choose to use it.


    Rudy’s public proclamations on abortion are pathetic and confusing. Even worse, they’re hypocritical.

    Rudy’s explanation is a classic expression of the position on abortion we’ve heard from weak-kneed politicians so frequently in recent years:

    “I’m personally opposed to but don’t want to impose my views on other people.” The incongruity of that position has been exposed many times now. As I’ve asked previously, would we let any politician get away with the same pathetic cop-out on other issues: “I’m personally opposed to . . . racial discrimination, sexual abuse, prostitution, drug abuse, polygamy, incest . . . but don’t want to impose my beliefs on others?”

    Why is it that when I hear someone explaining this position, I think of the sad figure of Pontius Pilate in the Gospels, who personally found no guilt in Jesus, but for fear of the crowd, washed his hands of the whole affair and handed Jesus over to be crucified. I can just hear Pilate saying, “You know, I’m personally opposed to crucifixion but I don’t want to impose my belief on others.”

    Rudy’s preposterous position is compounded by the fact that he professes to be a Catholic. As Catholics, we are called, indeed required, to be pro-life, to cherish and protect human life as a precious gift of God from the moment of conception until the time of natural death. As a leader, as a public official, Rudy Giuliani has a special obligation in that regard.

    In The Gospel of Life, Pope John Paul made the obligation to defend human life very explicit:

    “This task is the particular responsibility of civil leaders . . . No one can ever renounce this responsibility, especially when he or she has a legislative or decision-making mandate.”

    And more recently, the Bishops of the United States wrote: “If a Catholic in his or her personal or professional life were knowingly and obstinately to repudiate [the Church’s] definitive teaching on moral issues, he or she would seriously diminish his or her communion with the Church.” (Happy Are Those Who Are Called to His Supper, p. 11)

    Rudy’s defection from the Catholic Faith on this moral issue is not unique, of course. Catholic politicians of both parties, nationwide, have followed a similar path in abandoning the Faith for the sake of political expediency: Ted Kennedy, John Kerry, Pat Leahy, Nancy Pelosi, and Joe Biden come quickly to mind. And on a local level, of course, Congressman Patrick Kennedy and Senator Jack Reed. How these intelligent men and women will someday stand before the judgment seat of God and explain why they legitimized the death of countless innocent children in the sin of abortion is beyond me. (But God, really, I was personally opposed to it, but just couldn’t do anything about it.”)

    Oh well, as you can see by now, I won’t be attending the fundraiser for Rudy Giuliani. If Rudy wants to see me, he’ll have to arrange an appointment at my office. We’ll talk about his position on abortion. And if he wants a photo, it will cost him $1,500 as a donation for the pro-life work of the Church.

    Wednesday, June 06, 2007

    Poland reminds us

    Little by little Poland faces capitalism's power to persuade. Now will the people find enough people who don't care? Probably.


    I am old enough to remember when no stores were open on Sunday here. Just one brand of gas station did the 24/7 thing.


    Imagine all the lost sales! Imagine all the lost convenience. In 50 years it is nearly impossible to imagine what we have done to ourselves.




    Leaders of Poland's Solidarity movement are threatening a nationwide strike on the feast of Corpus Christi, to protest policies that require employees to work on religious and national holidays.


    Solidarity is demanding that all retail stores be closed on Sundays and on the country’s 12 most important national and religious holidays, including New Year’s Day, Easter, Corpus Christi, All Saints’ Day, Independence Day, and Christmas. A proposal to the same effect was introduced in the Polish parliament this year, but has yet to be voted on.


    Bujara admitted that Solidarity leaders do not know how many workers will join in the June 7 work stoppage. Some workers, he said, have said that they are afraid to miss work because their employers have indicated that they might hire temporary workers to take their places.

    Prepared to go to hell

    A Sydney lawmaker from the ruling Labor Party, Tony Stewart, a Catholic, said Wednesday he was prepared to go to hell rather than oppose the legislation, which he said would save many lives.

    Opposition lawmaker Adrian Piccoli, also a Catholic, said there would be "outrage" if an Islamic cleric told Muslim lawmakers how to vote.

    "The vast majority of Catholics don't believe that the church should influence politics and politicians," Piccoli told Australian Broadcasting Corp. radio.

    The bill would bring Australia's most populous state into line with federal law. The federal Parliament lifted a ban on therapeutic cloning last year.
    The Catholic archbishop of Sydney, Cardinal George Pell, gave the warning to lawmakers Tuesday ahead of a debate in the New South Wales state Parliament on Wednesday over a bill that would lift a ban on the splicing of DNA from skin cells into human eggs to produce stem cells for medical research.
    State Premier Morris Iemma and his deputy, John Watkins, are the highest-profile practicing Catholics who have announced their support for the bill.

    Pell said he might refuse to give Iemma, who lives in Sydney, the sacrament of communion during Mass if the premier supports the bill.

    "It is a serious moral matter and Catholic politicians who vote for this legislation must realize that their voting has consequences for their place in the life of the church," Pell told reporters Tuesday.

    Pell said he was not threatening to excommunicate lawmakers _ the most serious possible sanction, in which a Catholic is cut off from the church.

    Iemma said he had not met any Catholic lawmaker who would be swayed by Pell's threat.
    Piccoli says there would be "outrage" if an Islamic cleric told Muslim lawmakers how to vote. I doubt it. Religious leaders tell their followers how to live, and voting is a small part of how we live. Perhaps Piccoli has not heard a sermon in a long while.
    He does present an interesting contrast though regarding how we would accept the same specific instructions in muslim circles. One small difference though is that muslims leaders are always calling for war and veils, and Catholics are talking about protecting life and babies.
    Poor Tony Stewart who is prepared to go to hell. Such a long term commitment.

    Jack vs Muhammad

    Ya gotta have babies folks.


    MUHAMMAD is now second only to Jack as the most popular name for baby boys in Britain and is likely to rise to No1 by next year, a study by The Times has found.

    Muhammad Anwar, Professor of Ethnic Relations at Britain's Warwick University, said: “Muslim parents like to have something that shows a link with their religion or with the Prophet.”

    Muhammad, which means “one who is praiseworthy”, is often given to boys as an honorary prefix and is followed by the name by which they are commonly known. It is regularly cited as the most common name in the world, though there is no concrete evidence.

    Mufti Abdul Barkatullah, a former imam at the Finchley mosque in northwest London, said: “Parents who name their son Muhammad believe that the name has an effect on their personality and future characteristics. They are saying that this boy will be of good character.

    “Some people may not really understand the history of the Prophet Muhammad and the name but they still want the association so they can be recognised as one of his followers.

    “In Arab countries, the name Muhammad is said when you don’t know the name of someone. On the sub-continent, it is different: Muhammad can be used either before or after another name.

    Monday, June 04, 2007

    Kentucky bad

    Maybe there's more to this story than is listed here. It's hard to imagine Kentucky's attitude if they really take the evil of killing babies seriously.

    The last time I drove though Louisville they still had rent-by-the-hour motels on the outskirts of town. Perhaps it's just a matter of a poor state with poor Catholic leadership.

    Perhaps it's just some kind of mistake.

    Perhaps the Bishop's out of the country on vacation, and the lay committees are running things.


    The Archdiocese of Louisville, Kentucky has no objection to the appearance of pro-abortion Rep. John Yarmuth as commencement speaker at a local Catholic university. Yarmuth will give the address and receive an honorary doctorate from Spalding University, a nominally Catholic school, despite his position as a board member of Planned Parenthood.

    Archdiocesan spokesman Cecelia Price was quoted by the Courier Journal saying that the archdiocese had no difficulty with Yarmuth’s appearance and that it was the “right” of the university to invite him. “We understand that it is not unusual for universities to invite sitting members of Congress to participate in graduation ceremonies,” she said. “And we accept Spalding’s right to do so.”

    A spokesman for Kentucky Right to Life Association told that as a Congressman, Yarmuth, who is not Catholic, has participated in three votes on life issues and voted each time against the pro-life position.

    He told local TV station in May 2006, “I am a member of the board of Planned Parenthood, an organization which makes sure that children who are wanted are born, and those that aren’t, aren’t.”

    Cecelia, you're breaking my heart; you're shaking my confidence daily. I'm begging you please to come home.

    Bishops to-do list for G8

    The results of the Bishops' thinking on matters:

    • Focus on Africa
    • AIDS
    • Global Climate Change
    • Darfur
    • Illegal exploitation of natural resources (Africa)
    • Reforms in basic education (Africa)


    catholic interest.