Saturday, August 30, 2008

Pro-life Republican Ticket

+JMJ+
It is not my intent to change this blog into a political blog, but since not many feast days are occurring right now, and this issue is on every one's mind, I decided to post the following article:

GOP-PALIN Aug-29-2008 (570 words) With photos. xxxn

McCain selects Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin as running mate
By Carol Zimmermann
Catholic News Service

WASHINGTON (CNS) -- Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin, selected by Sen. John McCain Aug. 28 as his vice-presidential running mate, won the praise of Catholic leaders earlier this year for embracing the arrival of her fifth child, born with Down syndrome in April.

The Republican governor, who is a nondenominational Protestant, knew from early testing that her son Trig "would face special challenges," according to a family statement, but she and her husband Todd felt "privileged that God would entrust us with this gift and allow us unspeakable joy as he entered our lives."

The family's decision stands in contrast to statistics showing that more than 90 percent of women who receive a prenatal diagnosis of Down syndrome choose to abort the child.

Recent polls had indicated that if McCain picked a running mate who supported keeping abortion legal it would have cost him a significant number of votes.

Although Palin, Alaska's youngest and first woman governor, has been a strong supporter of pro-life issues, the 44-year-old governor's name had not been widely mentioned on the list of potential vice-presidential candidates that included former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney, Sen. Joe Lieberman, I-Conn., and former Pennsylvania Gov. Tom Ridge.

Palin accepted her selection as McCain's running mate during a rally in Dayton, Ohio, calling the role the "privilege of a lifetime."

McCain described her as someone with "grit, integrity and fierce devotion to the common good ... exactly what we need in Washington today."

Palin, who took office in 2006, came to the governor's job after a stint in local politics as the mayor and council member of the small town of Wasilla and as chairman of the state Oil and Gas Conservation Commission, which regulates Alaska's oil and gas resources.

Although she has pushed for ethics reform and has a reputation for standing up to special-interest groups, Palin also described herself plainly as a "hockey mom." She likes to fish and hunt and is a lifetime member of the National Rifle Association. In 1984 she was named Miss Wasilla and was a runner-up for Miss Alaska.

Born in Sandpoint, Idaho, Palin moved with her family to Alaska when she was an infant. She graduated from Wasilla High School in 1982 where she was a point guard and captain of the basketball team and earned the nickname "Sarah Barracuda" for her tough style.

She received a bachelor's degree in communications-journalism from the University of Idaho in 1987. Her husband is an oil production operator on Alaska's North Slope. Their oldest son, Track, enlisted in the Army last year.

Palin introduced her husband and four younger children -- Bristol, 17; Willow, 14; Piper, 7; and Trig -- at the Dayton rally.

After Trig's birth, Anchorage Archbishop Roger L. Schwietz told the Catholic Anchor, the archdiocesan newspaper, that Palin's "actions are a public witness to the fact that every child is a gift. This is what the pro-abortion people don't want to admit to."

Mercy Sister Kathleen O'Hara who assists people with disabilities at the Joy Community of Providence Alaska Medical Center in Anchorage, likewise praised Palin's decision, saying "people who had Down syndrome births were so thrilled."

"It says a great deal for their deep and abiding faith that they knew they were going to have a hard road ahead and they were willing to do this," she added.

Tuesday, August 26, 2008

Denver Bishops on Church's Stance Against Abortion

+JMJ+

This may not have anything to do with the liturgical year, but I felt it neccessary to post anyway!


"It's Always Important to Know What Our Faith Actually Teaches"

DENVER, Colorado, AUG. 26, 2008 (Zenit.org).- Here is the online letter Archbishop Charles Chaput and Auxiliary Bishop James Conley addressed to the Archdiocese of Denver on the stance of the Church against abortion. The letter, released Monday, is titled, "On the Separation of Sense and State: a Clarification for the People of the Church in Northern Colorado."

* * *

To Catholics of the Archdiocese of Denver:

Catholic public leaders inconvenienced by the abortion debate tend to take a hard line in talking about the "separation of Church and state." But their idea of separation often seems to work one way. In fact, some officials also seem comfortable in the role of theologian. And that warrants some interest, not as a "political" issue, but as a matter of accuracy and justice.

Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi is a gifted public servant of strong convictions and many professional skills. Regrettably, knowledge of Catholic history and teaching does not seem to be one of them. Interviewed on Meet the Press August 24, Speaker Pelosi was asked when human life begins. She said the following: "I would say that as an ardent, practicing Catholic, this is an issue that I have studied for a long time. And what I know is over the centuries, the doctors of the church have not been able to make that definition. ... St. Augustine said at three months. We don't know. The point is, is that it shouldn't have an impact on the woman's right to choose."

Since Speaker Pelosi has, in her words, studied the issue "for a long time," she must know very well one of the premier works on the subject, Jesuit John Connery's "Abortion: The Development of the Roman Catholic Perspective" (Loyola, 1977). Here's how Connery concludes his study:
"The Christian tradition from the earliest days reveals a firm antiabortion attitude. ... The condemnation of abortion did not depend on and was not limited in any way by theories regarding the time of fetal animation. Even during the many centuries when Church penal and penitential practice was based on the theory of delayed animation, the condemnation of abortion was never affected by it. Whatever one would want to hold about the time of animation, or when the fetus became a human being in the strict sense of the term, abortion from the time of conception was considered wrong, and the time of animation was never looked on as a moral dividing line between permissible and impermissible abortion."
Or to put it in the blunter words of the great Lutheran pastor Dietrich Bonhoeffer: "Destruction of the embryo in the mother's womb is a violation of the right to live which God has bestowed on this nascent life. To raise the question whether we are here concerned already with a human being or not is merely to confuse the issue. The simple fact is that God certainly intended to create a human being and that this nascent human being has been deliberately deprived of his life. And that is nothing but murder."

Ardent, practicing Catholics will quickly learn from the historical record that from apostolic times, the Christian tradition overwhelmingly held that abortion was grievously evil. In the absence of modern medical knowledge, some of the Early Fathers held that abortion was homicide; others that it was tantamount to homicide; and various scholars theorized about when and how the unborn child might be animated or "ensouled." But none diminished the unique evil of abortion as an attack on life itself, and the early Church closely associated abortion with infanticide. In short, from the beginning, the believing Christian community held that abortion was always, gravely wrong.

Of course, we now know with biological certainty exactly when human life begins. Thus, today's religious alibis for abortion and a so-called "right to choose" are nothing more than that -- alibis that break radically with historic Christian and Catholic belief.

Abortion kills an unborn, developing human life. It is always gravely evil, and so are the evasions employed to justify it. Catholics who make excuses for it -- whether they're famous or not -- fool only themselves and abuse the fidelity of those Catholics who do sincerely seek to follow the Gospel and live their Catholic faith.

The duty of the Church and other religious communities is moral witness. The duty of the state and its officials is to serve the common good, which is always rooted in moral truth. A proper understanding of the "separation of Church and state" does not imply a separation of faith from political life.

But of course, it's always important to know what our faith actually teaches.

+Charles J. Chaput, O.F.M. Cap.
Archbishop of Denver

+James D. Conley
Auxiliary Bishop of Denver

Friday, August 15, 2008

The Assumption of Mary

+JMJ+

I have posted yet another video, which is a good message for today:

Thursday, August 14, 2008

Saint Maximillian M. Kolbe

+JMJ+

Below is a video about Kolbe's life:



I am a member of an organization that St Maximilian Kolbe established, called the Militia of the Immaculata. For more information regarding the MI, please click here.

Monday, August 11, 2008

St. Clare


+JMJ+
Clare was a beautiful Italian noblewoman who became the Foundress of an order of nuns now called "Poor Clares." When she heard St. Francis of Assisi preach, her heart burned with a great desire to imitate Francis and to live a poor humble life for Jesus. So one evening, she ran away from home, and in a little chapel outside Assisi, gave herself to God. St. Francis cut off her hair and gave her a rough brown habit to wear, tied with a plain cord around her waist. Her parents tried in every way to make her return home, but Clare would not. Soon her sister, St. Agnes joined her, as well as other young women who wanted to be brides of Jesus, and live without any money. St. Clare and her sisters wore no shoes, ate no meat, lived in a poor house, and kept silent most of the time. Yet they were very happy, because Our Lord was close to them all the time. Once, He saved them from a great danger in answer to St. Clare's prayer. An army of rough soldiers came to attack Assisi and they planned to raid the convent first. Although very sick, St. Clare had herself carried to the wall and right there, where the enemies could see it, she had the Blessed Sacrament placed. Then on her knees, she begged God to save the Sisters. "O Lord, protect these Sisters whom I cannot protect now," she prayed. A voice seemed to answer: "I will keep them always in My care." At the same time a sudden fright struck the attackers and they fled as fast as they could. St. Clare was sick and suffered great pains for many years, but she said that no pain could trouble her. So great was her joy in serving the Lord that she once exclaimed: "They say that we are too poor, but can a heart which possesses the infinite God be truly called poor?" We should remember this miracle of the Blessed Sacrament when in Church. Then we will pray with great Faith to Jesus in the Holy Eucharist: "Save me, O Lord, from every evil - of soul and body." Her feast day is August 11.

Taken from www.catholic.org.

Saturday, August 9, 2008

St. Teresa Benedicta of the Cross (Edith Stein)

+JMJ+

Saint Teresa Benedicta of the Cross (Edith Stein)Virgin and Martyr Edith Stein, born in 1891 in Breslau, Poland, was the youngest child of a large Jewish family. She was an outstanding student and was well versed in philosophy with a particular interest in phenomenology. Eventually she became interested in the Catholic Faith, and in 1922, she was baptized at the Cathedral Church in Cologne, Germany. Eleven years later Edith entered the Cologne Carmel. Because of the ramifications of politics in Germany, Edith, whose name in religion was Teresa Benedicta of the Cross, was sent to the Carmel at Echt, Holland. When the Nazis conquered Holland, Teresa was arrested, and, with her sister Rose, was sent to the concentration camp at Auschwitz. Teresa died in the gas chambers of Auschwitz in 1942 at the age of fifty-one. In 1987, she was beatified in the Cologne cathedral by Pope John Paul II. Out of the unspeakable human suffering caused by the Nazis in western Europe in the 1930's and 1940's, there blossomed the beautiful life of dedication, consecration, prayer, fasting, and penance of Saint Teresa. Even though her life was snuffed out by the satanic evil of genocide, her memory stands as a light undimmed in the midst of evil, darkness, and suffering. She was canonized on October 11, 1998.

Taken from www.catholic.org

Friday, August 8, 2008

Saint Dominic

+JMJ+

I posted this video because Our Lady gave the rosary to St. Dominic!

Tuesday, August 5, 2008

August 5.—THE DEDICATION OF ST. MARY AD NIVES.

+JMJ+

THERE are in Rome three patriarchal churches, in which the Pope officiates on different festivals. These are the Basilics of St. John Lateran, St. Peter's on the Vatican Hill, and St. Mary Major. This last is so called because it is, both in antiquity and dignity, the first church in Rome among those that are dedicated to God in honor of the Virgin Mary. The name of the Liberian Basilic was given it because it was founded in the time of Pope Liberius, in the fourth century; it was consecrated, under the title of the Virgin Mary, by Sixtus III., about the year 435. It is also called St. Mary ad Nives, or at the snow, from a popular tradition that the Mother of God chose this place for a church under her invocation by a miraculous snow that fell upon this spot in summer, and by a vision in which she appeared to a patrician named John, who munificently founded and endowed this church in the pontificate of Liberius. The same Basilic has sometimes been known by the name of St. Mary ad Pr├Žsepe, from the holy crib or manger of Bethlehem, in which Christ was laid at His birth. It resembles an ordinary manger, is kept in a case of massive silver, and in it lies an image of a little child, also of silver. On Christmas Day the holy Manger is taken out of the case, and exposed. It is kept in a sumptuous subterraneous chapel in this church.

Reflection.—To render our supplications the more efficacious, we ought to unite them in spirit to those of all fervent penitents and devout souls, in invoking this advocate for sinners.

Taken from Lives of the Saints, by Alban Butler, Benziger Bros. ed. [1894], at sacred-texts.com

Monday, August 4, 2008

St. John Mary Vianney

+JMJ+

St. John Vianney
St. John Vianney, Priest (Patron of priests) Feast day - August 4 Universally known as the "Cure of Ars)," St. John Mary Vianney was ordained a priest in 1815. Three years later he was made parish priest of Ars, a remote French hamlet, where his reputation as a confessor and director of souls made him known throughout the Christian world. His life was one of extreme mortification.

Accustomed to the most severe austerities, beleaguered by swarms of penitents, and besieged by the devil, this great mystic manifested a imperturbable patience. He was a wonderworker loved by the crowds, but he retained a childlike simplicity, and he remains to this day the living image of the priest after the heart of Christ.

He heard confessions of people from all over the world for the sixteen hours each day. His life was filled with works of charity and love. It is recorded that even the staunchest of sinners were converted at his mere word. He died August 4, 1859, and was canonized May 31, 1925.

Taken from www.catholic.org

Friday, August 1, 2008

St. Alphonsus Liguori


ST. ALPHONSUS was born of noble parents, near Naples, in 1696. His spiritual training was intrusted to the Fathers of the Oratory in that city, and from his boyhood Alphonsus was known as a most devout Brother of the Little Oratory. At the early age of sixteen he was made doctor in law, and he threw himself into this career with ardor and success. A mistake, by which he lost an important cause, showed him the vanity of human fame, and determined him to labor only for the glory of glory He entered the priesthood, devoting himself to. the most neglected souls; and to carry on this work he founded later the missionary Congregation of the Most Holy Redeemer. At the age of sixty-six he became Bishop of St. Agatha, and undertook the reform of his diocese with the zeal of a Saint. He made a vow never to lose time, and, though his life was spent in prayer and work, he composed a vast number of books, filled with such science, unction, and wisdom that he has been declared one of the Doctors of the Church. St. Alphonsus wrote his first book at the age of forty-nine, and in his eighty-third year had published about sixty volumes, when his director forbade him to write more. Very many of these books were written in the half-hours snatched from his labors as missionary, religious superior, and Bishop, or in the midst of continual bodily and mental sufferings. With his left hand he would hold a piece of marble against his aching head while his right hand wrote. Yet he counted no time wasted which was spent in charity. He did not refuse to hold a long correspondence with a simple soldier who asked his advice, or to play the harpsichord while he taught his novices to sing spiritual canticles. He lived in evil times, and met with many persecutions and disappointments. For his last seven years he was prevented by constant sickness from offering the Adorable Sacrifice; but he received Holy Communion daily, and his love for Jesus Christ and his trust in Mary's prayers sustained him to the end. He died in 1787, in his ninety-first year.

Reflection.—Let us do with all our heart the duty of each day, leaving the result to God, as well as the care of the future.

Taken from Lives of the Saints, by Alban Butler, Benziger Bros. ed. [1894], p. 269 at sacred-texts.com