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Veritatis Splendor

"Keep your eyes fixed upon Jesus, who inspires and perfects our faith" --Hebrews 12:2

Pope Benedict XVI before our Lord

And only where God is seen does life truly begin. Only when we meet the living God in Christ do we know what life is. We are not some casual and meaningless product of evolution.
Each of us is the result of a thought of God.
Each of us is willed,
each of us is loved,
each of us is necessary.
There is nothing more beautiful than to be surprised by the Gospel, by the encounter with Christ. There is nothing more beautiful than to know Him and to speak to others of our friendship with Him.
~Pope Benedict XVI, Homily April 24th, 2005

Monday, September 27, 2004

'Jesus and Me?' Not Exactly...

Recently, author George Weigel wrote a brief article for the Denver Catholic Register newspaper, regarding the confusion that many Catholics have regarding their Church and its place in their lives.

Quote: "The Church is neither incidental nor peripheral to Catholic faith. The Church is an integral part of the faith. To deny that is to confess oneself confused, at the very least, about the creed. We do not profess “one holy, catholic, and apostolic Church” every Sunday as a matter of taste, tribal allegiance, or sociological self-definition. We “believe in” one holy, catholic, and apostolic Church as an integral part of our confession of faith in God and in Christ. That’s the true “seamless garment.”"

Check it out! -- http://www.catholicexchange.com/vm/index.asp?vm_id=1&art_id=25279

(Also see Weigel's latest book, Letters to a Young Catholic -- not just for the young either! :)

Thursday, September 23, 2004

"Don't Close Your Blinds!"

This was posted recently on another web board... provides some food for thought I think --

(author unknown)


"The other day, my nine year old son wanted to know why we were at war. My husband looked at our son and then looked at me. My husband and I were in the Army during the Gulf War and we would be honored to serve and defend our Country again today. I knew that my husband would give him a good explanation.

My husband thought for a few minutes and then told my son to go stand in our front living room window. He told him: "Son, stand there and tell me what you see?"

"I see trees and cars and our neighbor's houses." he replied.

"OK, now I want you to pretend that our house and our yard is the United States of America and you are President Bush."

Our son giggled and said "OK."

"Now son, I want you to look out the window and pretend that every house and yard on this block is a different country" my husband said.

"OK Dad, I'm pretending."

"Now I want you to stand there and look out the window and see that man come out of his house with his wife and he has her by the hair and is hitting her. You see her bleeding and crying. He hits her in the face, he throws her on the ground, then he starts to kick her to death. Their children run out and are afraid to stop him, they are crying, they are watching this but do nothing because they are kids and afraid of their father. You see all of this son.... what do you do?"


"What do you do son?"

"I call the police, Dad."

"OK. Pretend that the police are the United Nations and they take your call, listen to what you know and saw but they refuse to help. What do you do then son?"

"Dad, but the police are supposed to help!" My son starts to whine.

"They don't want to son, because they say that it is not their place or your place to get involved and that you should stay out of it," my husband says.

"But Dad...he killed her!!" my son exclaims.

"I know he did...but the police tell you to stay out of it. Now I want you to look out that window and pretend you see our neighbor who you're pretending is Saddam turn around and do the same thing to his children."

"Daddy...he kills them?"

"Yes son, he does. What do you do?"

"Well, if the police don't want to help, I will go and ask my next door neighbor to help me stop him." our son says.

"Son, our next door neighbor sees what is happening and refuses to get involved as well. He refuses to open the door and help you stop him," my husband says.

"But Dad, I NEED help!!! I can't stop him by myself!!"

"OK, no one wants to help you, the man across the street saw you ask for help and saw that no one would help you stop him. He stands taller and puffs out his chest. Guess what he does next son?" "What Daddy?"

"He walks across the street to the old lady's house and breaks down her door and drags her out, steals all her stuff and sets her house on fire and then...he kills her. He turns around and sees you standing in he window and laughs at you. WHAT DO YOU DO?"



Our son is crying and he looks down and he whispers, "I close the blinds, Daddy."

My husband looks at our son with tears in his eyes and asks him... "Why?"

"Because Daddy.....the police are supposed to help...people who need it....and they won't help....You always say that neighbors are supposed to HELP neighbors, but they won't help either...they won't help me stop him...I'm afraid....I can't do it by myself. Daddy.....I can't look out my window and just watch him do all these terrible things and...and.....do nothing...so....I'm just going to close the blinds....so I can't see what he's doing........and I'm going to pretend that it is not happening."

I start to cry.

My husband looks at our nine year old son standing in the window, looking pitiful and ashamed at his answers to my husband's questions and he tells him...."Son"

"Yes, Daddy."

"Open the blinds because that man.... he's at your front door..."WHAT DO YOU DO?"

My son looks at his father with anger and defiance in his eyes. He balls up his tiny fists and looks his father square in the eyes, without hesitation he says: "I DEFEND MY FAMILY DAD!! I'M NOT GONNA LET HIM HURT MOMMY OR MY SISTER, DAD!!! I'M GONNA FIGHT HIM, DAD, I'M GONNA FIGHT HIM!!!!!"

I see a tear roll down my husband's cheek and he grabs my son to his chest and hugs him tight, and cries..."It's too late to fight him, he's too strong and he's already at YOUR front door son.....you should have stopped him BEFORE he killed his wife. You have to do what's right, even if you have to do it alone, before......it's too late."

Wednesday, September 22, 2004

Dealing with the Devil

Today, Archbishop Chaput of the Archdiocese of Denver released a clear and concise essay on the history of the sundering of the Catholic conscience from the Catholic identity in American politics.

While the root cause comes from much further back in history, President John F. Kennedy, who spoke the infamous words that comforted a "wary Protestant audience" that he would not "let the pope" tell him what to do in office, can be seen as the primary motivator behind the modern idea of religion's relation to politics. He effectively "severed his Catholic identity from his public service," as Archbishop Chaput writes.

Since Kennedy's day, many "Catholic" political figures have since followed in his footsteps, claiming his words are an argument from authority and assuming its validity outright -- "welll of course I can't let my religion dictate how I make political decisions! We do have a separation of church and state you know" (or so the line usually goes).

At first, as Archbishop Chaput notes, the "Kennedy compromise" seemed to work alright, on a certain level anyway. However, with the rise in 1973 of the historic decision by the Supreme Court to "legalize" abortion in this country, the error of Kennedy's compromising way became clear. Suddenly, direct murder was being made "legal" and the supposedly "Catholic" politicians hid behind Kennedy's words, as they furthered the cause of the pro-abortion groups. What began as an innocous and superficially correct "compromise" quickly changed from "compromise" to "surrender". By accepting the notion of Kennedy's separation between church and state, without questioning the extent to which it could be morally applied, those politicians are raising themselves above all moral authority, including that of the Catholic Church to which they profess to be in communion with.

The Archbishop warns, "that's a deal with the devil, and it has a balloon payment no nation, no public servant, and no voter can afford."

Follow the link to read Archbishop Chaput's article -- http://www.archden.org/dcr/news.php?e=97&s=2&a=2293

Saturday, September 18, 2004

Rosary for Truth

For those in the Twin Cities metro area, I would like to encourage you to participate when you are able in the lay outreach "Rosary for Truth". This group goes every Sunday to a different parish in the Twin Cities Archdiocese where there has been open support of the active gay-lifestyle, where the parish has invited anti-Catholic/pro-choice speakers to talk, and where the liturgies are severely illict and even invalid.

The group meets 20 minutes before the mid-morning Mass, and prays together silently the Rosary in the main church. The intention for this Rosary is to pray for the ongoing conversion of the parish and clergy, for their hearts and minds to be open to the fullness of the faith that they profess to be in communion with. The group also prays for our Archbishop, that he may be strengthened by the Holy Spirit, and be more willing to stand for Christ and His Church, charitably but uncompromisingly.

Since beginning this project, many fruits have already emerged. Regular parishoners have approached Rosary for Truth members desiring to join them in prayer, or wishing to learn how to pray the Rosary themselves. Others have asked about other ways to pray, as they have never been told how before. Many are beginning to seek out Adoration. All because they first saw these people silently gathering in their church one Sunday, and wondered what was going on!

So many of the Catholic faithful have actively sought out faithful and orthodox parishes, and in doing so have left behind parishes that are struggling. While it is important for our own spiritual growth that we find a good parish that will nourish our faith, it is not to be done by completely abandoning our brothers and sisters in Christ. They need our prayers, they need our presence, they need to see the joy that we have found in the fullness of the Church founded by Jesus Christ to carry on His mission in the world!

If you are in the Twin Cities area and would be interested in participating occasionally with the Rosary for Truth group, please contact me and I will get you in touch with them. If you are not in our area, please consider beginning a similar group in your diocese!

The whole concern of doctrine and its teaching must be directed to the love that never ends. Whether something is proposed for belief, for hope or for action, the love of our Lord must always be made accessible, so that anyone can see that all the works of perfect Christian virtue spring from love and have no other objective than to arrive at love.
--Catechism of the Catholic Church, 25

Friday, September 17, 2004

44% of pro-lifers are not registered to vote!

Well, I think we're back up and running here finally! :)

As seems typical, whenever you move everything is a bit out of whack for a few weeks. And, even more so in this case since classes started again last week.

Anyway -- a bit of news that I would like to pass along from Priests for Life:

"44% of Pro-Lifers who support a major Pro-Life organization are not registered to vote!

I've sent you this special letter because almost 44% of our own Priests for Life family members are NOT registered to vote in this year's critically important November elections!

In Florida alone, 3,215 Priests for Life supporters are not registered to vote! That's over FIVE TIMES the number of votes that separated the two Presidential candidates in 2000!

I don't know whether you are registered to vote or not. But please take a few moments to read my letter when it arrives … sometime after the 10th. And if you are registered to vote, would you read my letter and help get ten more of your fellow pro-lifers to register?

Just go to http://www.priestsforlife.org and click the register to vote button. Then, please let me know that you have done so!

Thank you. Father Frank Pavone"

Everyone -- please PLEASE register to vote and VOTE in this year's crucial election!!

Tuesday, September 07, 2004

Moving, moving, moving...

Well, I've been offline for about a week now, as I've moved to a new house with a couple of friends.

The boxes are unpacked, and I even have stuff on the walls now, but still no Internet at home... silly Qwest is taking forever to get our phone/DSL line going.

Anyway, supposedly our line will be hooked up tomorrow and I will be able to resume normal programming here! :)

God bless all of you!!

Fra Angelico's Annunciation