Life is a journey; the choices you make now will determine your eternal destination.

Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Happy New Year

I thought I would leave this year with the Holy Family to see us out; may Mary and Joseph care for and protect us in 2009 and may the Christ Child live in our hearts forever. I pray for a strengthening of family values and that all babies will be born. I pray for the spiritual and temporal needs of my family and yours. And I ask Our Father for families to receive the grace and courage they need in any troubles which may beset them in the coming year. Blessed Virgin, shelter families beneath your mantle. God bless you all!

Monday, December 29, 2008

Looking Back

The end of the year is always a good time for reflection; and it has been quite a year for many of us. My husband and I moved into a new community in the spring where he found a job that suits him well; I too am working here at an Auction mart for cattle sales- which I thoroughly enjoy.
We have a little country church here which I helped to paint the interior, and did a little painting of the Holy Spirit for; my husband is now attending Mass regularly and receiving the Sacraments, for which I am very grateful that my prayers have been answered.
My husband got in contact with his daughter after many long years of not knowing her and we hope that she will decide to get to know him for the wonderful person he is.
I overcame my fear of flying to go to the coast to sponsor my niece for Confirmation.
I started two blogs- this one and my horse blog- which has led to more proficiency on the computer and camera, but more importantly, I have new friends to share with and pray for.
Every year must also have it's sadness, and while we had a wonderful family gathering for Dad's 80th birthday, he has, in the last few months, advanced in dementia, and it's very sad to see. My mother also is failing in health but increasing in holiness.
I lost my cat Otis last month to Urinary Tract disease, and my heart goes out to Tom in Vegas who lost his little dog, Critter, on Dec. 28th.
Although the world is in a recession, it hasn't hit us too hard, and I pray for relief for those who are struggling to get by.
So to all, I wish a Happy New Year and pray that God will bless you in all your spiritual and temporal needs, and that 2009 will see a renewal in traditional values in the Catholic Church, and will see more people living their faith.

Thursday, December 25, 2008

Wednesday, December 24, 2008

Fr. Corapi newsletter

A Christmas Greeting
The blessed and joyous time of Christmas is here again. So, I’ll just take the opportunity to thank all of our viewing and listening family for allowing us into your homes. I don’t take that for granted. I am honestly grateful to you for allowing us to serve you in that way.
As I look out the windows of my home in Montana it sure is “beginning to look a lot like Christmas.” We have about a foot of snow and it’s been below zero for about ten days. Two of my dogs are under my desk with their heads resting on my feet--looking like those big fuzzy slippers that little kids sometimes wear.
Christmas is, of course, the best time to recall that Jesus, the Son of God, in fact was born in a poor stable or cave on a cold night—“for us men, and for our salvation.” Amidst the escalating uncertainty and chaos of the modern world we must sit still for a moment and remember what really matters.
In recent years major corporations have been vaporized in the twinkling of an eye. It’s a sign of the times, but recall that what really matters is that it was the twinkling of a star that led shepherds and wise men to the One who is the Light of the world.
In recent years the biggest accounting firm in the world ceased to be over night. They don’t account for anything today, but it honestly doesn’t matter. What really matters is that on a cold night two millennia ago the God who loves us was born in Bethlehem and laid in a manger by the Mother who loves Him.
In recent years the unthinkable has happened--major banks and financial institutions have ceased to be. That doesn’t matter either because the truly unthinkable happened on the first Christmas Eve long ago when the God who always was and will never cease to be came to show us the depth and breadth of His love.
In recent years I have been accused of being a “prophet of doom, and a pessimist.” I can understand this criticism, but it really isn’t true. I am a realist, and as a priest and Catholic/Christian of necessity must share in the prophetic dimension of Christ. The United States, and the entire world for the most part, is in many ways precipitating its own demise. That matters, and we must do all we can to “fight the good fight,” but what truly matters is the state of your soul and mine because in the end that will determine how we live forever, and compared to that nothing else really matters.
Things may go from bad to worse. It may well go from uncomfortable to dangerous to live your Catholic/Christian faith in a world unraveling rapidly due to one bad moral choice after the other. Remember that it will not be the first time if Christians are persecuted, even imprisoned and executed. “The blood of martyrs is the seed of Christians.” The Western world is too fat and lazy, in the secular order and even in the religious. Perhaps a jolly good persecution may be what it takes for people to decide to live their faith, rather than go along with what they know to be a sick society.
In any event, don’t let it get you down. Whatever happens, stay close to Jesus and Mary. Remember that our God is not against you. He is for you, and He will be with you through all of the ups and downs of life. He will be with you in sickness and in health; in good times and in bad; and when death comes knocking at your door He will be there to comfort you and lead you safely home. Having fought the good fight and run the race to the finish line, you will surely hear those beautiful words:
“WELL DONE MY GOOD AND FAITHFUL SERVANT! NOW AT LAST ENTER INTO THE JOY OF YOUR MASTER’S HOUSE.”
A most blessed and merry Christmas and a holy, happy, and healthy New Year to each and all of you!
Fr. John Corapi

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

The History of a Carol

I recently came across this explanation of the Twelve Days of Christmas, and I'm asking you scholarly types out there if there is any truth to it:

From 1558 until 1829, Roman Catholics in England were not permitted to practice their faith openly. Someone during that era wrote this carol as a catechism song for young Catholics. It has two levels of meaning: the surface meaning plus a hidden meaning known only to members of their church. Each element in the carol has a code word for a religious reality which the children could remember.
-The partridge in a pear tree was Jesus Christ.
-Two turtle doves were the Old and New Testaments.
-Three French hens stood for faith, hope and love.
-The four calling birds were the four gospels of Matthew, Mark, Luke & John.
-The five golden rings recalled the Torah or Law, the first five books of the Old Testament.
-The six geese a-laying stood for the six days of creation.
-Seven swans a-swimming represented the sevenfold gifts of the Holy Spirit.
-The eight maids a-milking were the eight beatitudes.
-Nine ladies dancing were the nine fruits of the Holy Spirit.
-The ten lords a-leaping were the ten commandments.
-The eleven pipers piping stood for the eleven faithful disciples.
-The twelve drummers drumming symbolized the twelve points of belief in the Apostles' Creed.

So what say ye?

Saturday, December 20, 2008

Faith Freedom Fighters

Are courts in the U.S. starting to get a backbone? So it seems.....

Illinois Supreme Court Decision Supports Conscience Rights of Pharmacists
CHICAGO, Illinois, December 19, 2008 (LifeSiteNews.com) – Yesterday the Illinois Supreme Court ruled in Morr-Fitz v. Blagojevich that individual pharmacists and pharmacy owners do have legal standing to challenge a rule requiring them to dispense Plan B, which abortion activists call “emergency contraception,” regardless of their religious, moral, or conscientious beliefs. The rule was originally forced upon the pharmacists and pharmacies by a 2005 emergency order of Governor Rod Blagojevich, who stated in no uncertain terms that pharmacists should either dispense the controversial drug or leave the profession. Two lower courts had previously ruled that the plaintiff-pharmacists and pharmacies did not have legal standing to challenge the rule. In a 2006 State of the State address, Blagojevich expressed his intention to veto any bills that attempted to restore physicians’ conscience rights. "Now, I understand that several bills have been introduced that would overturn my executive order to protect women's reproductive freedoms,” he said. “So let me make something else very clear -- if any of those bills reach my desk, they are dead on arrival."
Also in 2006 he boasted to the Windy City Times about his record of denying pharmacists their conscience rights. “Think about what we’ve been able to do since I’ve been governor,” he said. “The reproductive freedoms of women are more protected in Illinois than any state in America. That’s in [stark] contrast to the advances and assaults coming from the Bush administration of Washington. We passed a law under my leadership to make insurance companies fill female contraceptives. Illinois had never done that before and we passed that law.”
Dr. Charmaine Yoest, Americans United for Life (AUL) President and CEO, responded to the Supreme Court decision, stating, “This is a huge victory for the freedom of conscience of all healthcare providers. Pharmacists now have proper recourse against a discriminatory law that would force them to check their constitutional rights at the workplace door.” Mailee Smith, AUL Staff Counsel, noted, “Finally, an Illinois court got it right. If pharmacists and pharmacy owners don’t have standing to challenge a rule that unfairly targets them, who does? People should have legal recourse when the state attempts to circumvent and even eliminate their constitutional rights.”
AUL’s brief is available at
http://tinyurl.com/aulmorrfitz

Friday, December 19, 2008

Nuns receive the Order of Canada

Two nuns have received the Order of Canada. While there is no doubt that they deserve it,is this just a knee-jerk reaction to the huge protest over giving the Order to abortionist Morgentaler? Are the powers that be trying to placate us, like throwing the dog a bone? Hmmmm...

Thursday, December 18, 2008

My Journey, Continued

"People today do not come to God through the order of the universe; they come to God through disorder within their own selves." This quote from Archbishop Sheen, is true in my own case. It was the emptiness in my life and the knowledge that there was something missing that brought me back to the Catholic Church and an active prayer life. When I look at the people in my life, I can see so many of them that also have this emptiness and are not even aware of it; they are dissatisfied and find no joy in life, but don't know how to change.
The beginning of change has to be in surrendering ourselves to the inspiration of grace. Those still, small voices within us that prompt us to do something good; a kindness, or a charitable act. So often these are shrugged away as an inconvenience, as the world takes over. Sheen also says; "The path of duty, in a flash of an eye, becomes very plain, but self-indulgence makes the soul as blind as a mole."
Don't be afraid to give in to the inspirations of grace. It will take you out of your comfort zone, to be sure. It may make you the center of ridicule among your family and friends. It may give your life the fulfillment your restless soul has been seeking.

Friday, December 12, 2008

Feast of Our Lady of Guadalupe

I was going to do a post with a prayer to our lady of Guadalupe, patroness of North America, but instead I am directing you over to St. Robert Bellarmine's Blog for his post, complete with beautiful pictures and a scriptural reading.

The Pope's World Day Of Peace Message

I love our Pope! Here is a link to his World Day Of Peace (Jan. 1 2009) document. If only the world leaders were as wise as he is!

Faith Freedom Fighters

Here is the story of a police officer who was fired for defending his faith. I sent an email to his employer asking for him to be reinstated and I urge you to do the same. The link is at the bottom. Keep it polite and charitable!

Officer Fired for Expressing Christian Views on Homosexuality Says Dismissal is "Destroying" Him and His Family
By Matthew Cullinan Hoffman
NORFOLK, BRITAIN, December 11, 2008 (LifeSiteNews.com) - A Norfolk County police officer who was fired for quoting the Bible regarding the immorality of homosexual sexual relations says that he is "totally devastated" by what has happened to him.
"It was a job I loved. This is destroying me and my family," Officer Graham Cogman told the Daily Mail last week.
Cogman was reportedly dismissed from his position in late November after he sent an email quoting Biblical passages denouncing homosexual behavior, and another e-mail linking to a ministry in the USA that seeks to cure homosexuals of their condition.
Cogman says he sent the emails after being "bombarded" with emails sent by police department employees promoting the "gay" agenda, including messages urging him to wear a pink ribbon in honor of "gay history month." He reportedly responded to one email from a homosexual liaison officer with the Christian saying, "Love the sinner, hate the deed."
There are no reports of firings or discipline against the employees of the police department who promote homosexual behavior.
Police officials claim that Cogman violated department regulations regarding computer use, as well as regulations requiring "politeness and tolerance," according to one media report. "This officer's behavior fell well below what we expect of our people," said department spokesman Ian Learmoth.
"In the service in general there is a feeling of fear," Cogman told the Daily Mail. "There is a definite bias against faith – any faith – if it takes a critical view of homosexual sex."
"The easy option for me would have been to keep quiet but when there is such prejudice towards one point of view, how can that be right? That doesn’t sound like equality and diversity to me," he added.
The Rev Martin Young, vicar of St Andrew’s church in Norwich, has written an open letter to the Norfolk police department blasting their actions.
"His views are not extreme or unusual," writes Young. "They are consistent with the published understanding of the Church of England, of which he is a member."
“The phrase 'Love the sinner, hate the deed' is a common Christian aphorism which encapsulates the Christian's duty to love all people, regardless of their lifestyle choices," the letter continued. "This is presumably also what the service intend to convey in their diversity policy."
“PC Cogman made measured responses in a spirit of openness and honesty, and for this he should be lauded, not punished."
Cogman is reportedly appealing the decision with the help of the Christian Legal Centre.
Contact Information:
Norfolk Police Department(44) 0845 456 4567 (from the US, dial "011" first)enquiries@norfolk.pnn.police.uk
Christian Legal Centre
http://www.christianlegalcentre.com/

Thursday, December 11, 2008

Dec. 11 and what it means to me

This was my sister, Sharron. We were very close. I think she was 14 when this picture was taken. At the age of 16, she was hit and killed by a drunk driver while walking along the side of the highway. Today, she would have been celebrating her 58th birthday.
Her patron saint is St Therese, and I have been making a novena to her that ends today. Please join me in the last day of this novena:

St Therese of the Roses, please pray for the soul of my sister, Sharron. Eternal rest grant unto her, O Lord, and let perpetual light shine on her and may she rest in peace. Amen.

Please remember that you never know the hour or the day when Our Lord will call you home; be prepared by always striving to remain in a state of grace, always trying to do God's will in your daily life, and remembering that each day draws you closer to death and is a preparation for your eternal life.

Monday, December 8, 2008

Family: God set the example

In this news article from Australia, the Archbishop hits on a subject that infuriates the gay community. However, thank you to the Archbishop for this timely message, and affirming the necessity of fathers in the family. St. Joseph, please pray for and protect families.


Archbishop Barry Hickey laments lost fathers
Article from: PerthNow
December 06, 2008 06:00pm

THE absence of fathers is the biggest family and social problem in our society, according to Catholic Archbishop Barry Hickey.
Delivering his pre-Christmas message on Friday, Archbishop Hickey said the absence of dads was a bigger problem than drugs. ``If Father Christmas was offering me gifts, I would ask for peace in every family and a father at the heart of every family,'' he said.
``The absence of fathers is the biggest family and social problem we face today. It is the biggest cause of lifelong difficulties for fathers, mothers and, most of all, for children.
``The absence of fathers is bigger than anger, aggression, alcohol, drugs, crime and under-achievement by children because it is the biggest single contributor to all of them. ``This is borne out worldwide by every large-scale, long-term study of family.
I know that Father Christmas isn't going to solve this problem for me, but I keep praying for it.'' Archbishop Hickey said Christmas was an important time for families. But these days we were in danger of forgetting what family was, he said.
``Firstly, it is father and mother accepting lifelong responsibility for one another and their children and then it is sharing of family life within and across generations,'' he said.
``It is not only that Christmas is important for families. It is also true that family is important for Christmas. When God chose to send his only son to Earth to share in our humanity, he chose to place him in a family.
``He chose a mother, Mary, who gave her life to God's will and a father, Joseph, who gave his life to caring for Mary and Jesus.
``This was God himself confirming to us that children need to be raised in families where they can learn what it is to be a man and what it is to be a woman and how wonderful is the love between them.''

Saturday, December 6, 2008

Faith Freedom Fighters

It is suitable that during Advent, there are signs of hope throughout the world. More and more we see people standing up for Christianity in the face of the outrages being perpetrated by those in power; and by the grace of God this new political party will gain support and momentum:

Italy’s Most Prominent Muslim Convert to Catholicism to Establish Party to Defend “Europe’s Christian Values”
By Hilary White, Rome Correspondent
MILAN, Italy December 5, 2008 (LifeSiteNews.com) – A well-known convert to Catholicism from Islam has announced that he will be starting a new European political party that will uphold “the sanctity of life of every human being.” Magdi Allam, an Egyptian journalist living in Italy, said that he and others will run in European Parliament elections on June 7, 2009 for a new party called Protagonists for Christian Europe.
“The party,” he said, “will be committed to promoting and defending Europe’s Christian values.” It will “fill the ethical void” that he says exists in Italy and in Europe and will be based on the “Judeo-Christian roots of Europe.” These values “must be recovered and affirmed with clarity now more than ever” in response to the threats of “savage capitalism, relativism and the spread of Islamic extremism,” Allam said.
He warned against the growing incursions of Islamic law in Europe, which, he said, represent a threat to the traditional Christian family structure, “as is occurring already in England, where decisions by private Muslim courts regarding polygamy are indirectly beginning to be legitimized.”
He wrote recently of his conversion to Catholicism: “On my first Easter as a Christian I not only discovered Jesus, I discovered for the first time the face of the true and only God, who is the God of faith and reason.” He has received numerous death threats from Islamic extremists since his baptism.
Allam, who was baptised and received into the Catholic Church in a well-publicised Easter Vigil ceremony at St. Peter’s Basilica by Pope Benedict XVI this year, is a long-time supporter of Israel and was honoured last year by the American Jewish Committee. Author of the Italian best-seller, “Long Live Israel - From the Ideology of Death to the Civilization of Life: My Story,” he has continued to defend Israel despite the fact that the Islamic Palestinian authority Hamas condemned to death in 2003.
Allam was exposed to Christianity early in life, being raised in part by a member of the Catholic religious order, the Comboni Missionary Sisters, and later sent to a Catholic boarding school in Egypt - the Institute of Don Bosco - for junior high and high school. He is a deputy editor of Milan-based Corriere della Sera newspaper, regarded in Italy as a paper with a conservative editorial position.

Thursday, December 4, 2008

Quotes from Bishop Fulton Sheen

Sanctifying the moment:

Every moment brings us more treasures than we can gather. The great value of the Now, spiritually viewed, is that it carries a message God has directed personally to us.

The Divine Beloved speaks to the soul in a whisper, but because the soul is waiting for a trumpet, it loses His command.

The big, world-shattering things many of us imagine we would like to do for God, might, in the end, feed only our egotism. On the other hand, to accept the crosses of our state of life because they come from an all-loving God is to have taken the most important step in the reformation of the world, namely, the reformation of the self.

The phrase that sanctifies any moment is, “Thy will be done.”

Each trial is an occasion for faith and an opportunity for virtue.

Wednesday, December 3, 2008

My Journey, Continued

In my spiritual readings today, everything I read was about accepting suffering and humiliation. It got me to thinking about a conversation I had a few years ago with a young friend. We were talking about how suffering can purify the soul, and the grace derived from accepting suffering gladly. This young woman was raised as a Jehovah's Witness, and she just didn't understand. She talked about how her grandfather had suffered greatly before his death. Being such a young person, the thought of such suffering moved her to tears, and she told me she would be in favour of allowing drug-induced death rather than allowing the suffering to continue. There are so many people in the world today that have absolutely no idea about the redemptive value of suffering that it is no surprise that euthanasia is gaining in popularity. This all comes back to the lack of good religious education. There is a lot of clean-up to do for Catholics to repair the damage done in the last 50 years, and I believe that until we, as Catholics, return to the correct teachings of the Catholic Church, the world will continue in it's downward spiral. The good news is that we have a Pope who is attempting to return us to our traditions and Traditions, and I pray that he lives long enough to see the fruits of his labour. If you would like to read a report on this subject, go here.

Friday, November 28, 2008

Faith Freedom Fighters

I am starting a new series of posts with this one. The focus will be on those who are willing to defend our faith, to put themselves in the public eye and stand up for what they believe in. I believe that we need to have our voices heard in mainstream culture, for this seems to be a media based culture, and let's use the resources available to us. The news reports of those who do good are too often buried in favour of sensational reports of the evils being done today, so I would like to do my part to support those who stand up for our religous freedom.
There is a pro-life short film called Volition that is the subject of today's post.

Behind the Scenes of Volition: Coincidences and Startling Circumstances
By John Jalsevac
(
November 26, 2008 (LifeSiteNews.com) – The RED One has been described as the “Lamborghini” of digital film cameras; shooting in 4k resolution with a dynamic range close to that of traditional cameras, the RED prices at about $25,000, with all the necessary gadgets. And so, when a rented RED One was dropped on the second day of shooting the powerful pro-life short-film “Volition,” 22-year-old director Tim Morgan, and his younger brother and collaborator, Matthew, thought the game was up.
“At that point we thought we had to throw in the towel, because there was no way we could continue filming that day,” Tim Morgan told LifeSiteNews in a recent interview. And with only three days to shoot scenes in three different locations depicting three different historical periods, the film was already on a tight, if not impossible, schedule. It was beginning to look as if Volition was not meant to be after all.
Its circuit boards cracked, the camera refused to start up for ten minutes … at least, not until members of the cast and crew gathered around the camera and prayed over it. At that point it fired up, and the shoot was completed.
Tim says that in the whirlwind of post-production he and his brother completely forgot about the incident - until they sent the camera back to the manufacturer. The manufacturer, he relates, said that “all the circuit boards were cracked and there was no way this camera should have been able to work.”
This incident, which the young director posits may be a veritable miracle, is just one of a host of remarkable stories that surround the making of “Volition.” Indeed, the creation of the short film is steeped in coincidences and startling circumstances that hint that “Volition” yet has some definite purpose to serve.
Morgan relates, for instance, that for most of his life, while he had always been “pro-life,” he had never given much thought to the issue – that is, until last year when he attended the massive prayer rally, “The Call.” “That’s when it really hit me, hit my heart,” he says, “that there is a need for just some sort of voice in the arts, in the entertainment world, in defense of these unborn babies.”
At this point, however, Volition was, if anything, but a seed of a thought, without any definite form. It was one night, while doing some work in Israel, the birthplace of Christianity, of the Christ-child Himself, the ultimate proof and testament to the sanctity of human life, that Tim found himself in a fever and unable to sleep. “So I woke up and started a hot bath and pretty much wrote the whole outline for the movie that night,” he relates.
But with an elaborate script that called for scenes in Nazi Germany, the pre-Civil-War American South, and modern times, money was an issue. For six months after Tim wrote the script the brothers sought investors interested in making Volition a reality; but none were to be had. It was then, however, that they received an unexpected phone call from The Doorpost, an online film competition that they had entered some time back, and never thought twice about.
Now the representative from The Doorpost was telling Tim that the competition had selected the brothers as finalists and that they were offering them seventeen and a half thousand dollars to make any film of their choice on the theme of “hope.”
“It was like a door opening out of nowhere,” Tim says. “All of a sudden I have this budget for a movie I’ve been looking to get the budget for.”
The Morgan brothers promptly began to plan the shoot, advertising to find actors for the rolls and compiling a production team that involved numerous family and friends. Volition was beginning to take shape.
With only two weeks to go before production began, however, Tim was in Uganda filming a documentary for an NGO. Most of the other contestants in The Doorpost contest had already started shooting their films, Tim says, but he was halfway around the world, trying to finish shooting the promo for Show Mercy International (See the promo at:
http://www.showmercy.org).
It was in Uganda that Tim says he found the final inspiration for Volition. “We were working with these orphan kids who had these horrendous stories,” he relates. “One kid, for instance, he saw his father chop down his whole family with a machete before killing himself.
“And I’m listening to this kid, and this kid has had nothing. And I’m thinking to myself, ‘If there was any group of people on earth, that it would seem that they didn’t have a reason to live, it would be these kids. But these kids have been given a chance by the people at the orphanage.” Some of these orphans, he related, now had dreams that would before have been inconceivable, such as becoming an engineer.
This experience in Uganda, which Tim describes as “life altering,” gave him the final confirmation that he needed, filling him with a sense of urgency. “Just seeing the beauty of a human life given another chance inspired me, and really crossed over to the issue of, ‘OK, there’s this whole group of people in the US and North America - the unborn babies - that are not being given the same chance.’”
This epiphany, he says, “really crossed over and inspired me, as I was making this movie.”
Back in his hometown of Atlanta, Tim and his brother launched into a hectic schedule of pre-production (two-three weeks), shooting (three days), and post-production (10 days). Numerous friends and family stepped in, sometimes at great sacrifice, such as one friend who flew from Calgary at his own expense to do the art design, and another from Portland. “They’re not doing this for me,” Tim says he realized at the time, “they’re doing this because they believe in the message of the film.”
The end result of that month of work was Volition, a short film of startling beauty and rare poignancy that cuts to the very heart of the debate over abortion, and, indeed, the very meaning of what it is to be human.
The “thesis” of the film, explains the director, is “that throughout history there’s been groups of people that have tried to classify other groups of people as less than human, as sub-human, through scientific means or whatever means possible, so as to rationalize the mistreating and the suppressing of the other group.”
As far as the reception of the movie has been concerned, Tim states that, as expected for a film that tackles such a controversial subject, it has been “mixed.” On The Doorpost’s website, he says, “There was definitely a lively conversation that this film sparked, which was encouraging to me.”
As far as Tim and Matthew are concerned, however, Volition is only the beginning of much more to come. According to the young director, there is a great need for Christians to enter into and influence the art world, including the film world. He and his brother hope to be two of those who do exactly that.
The Christian community, he says, “has kind of left the art world on the back burner. My vision would be them treating the art world, the film world, with the same sense of urgency as they’re treating, for instance, an overseas mission.
“This is an emergency for our culture, to be able to influence our film, our arts, the American pop culture in this way.”
“I know there’s a lot of Christian investors out there,” he concludes. “My vision is kind of having the Church as passionate about the art world and the culture and film, and having people, kind of like in the old days of the Church, where they would sponsor the artist that would influence the modern pop culture. I guess my vision is of seeing that happen again, where the Church sees the urgency of influencing the film and entertainment world.”
To watch Volition, go to:
http://www.thedoorpost.com/hope/film/?film=420351f1aefa2b42b...
To find out more about Tim and Matthew Morgan and their film company, go to:
http://www.rockyfarmstudio.com/
The brothers can be reached at: info@rockyfarmstudio.com

Thursday, November 27, 2008

Thanksgiving newsletter from Fr. Corapi

In his usual inimitable style, Fr, Corapi's latest newsletter tells it like it is!

Give Thanks to the Lord for He is Good
Every Thanksgiving we are reminded to do for at least one day what should be a constant dimension of our spiritual life: Give Thanks. The prayer of thanksgiving is one of the major forms of prayer, along with adoration, reparation, intercession, and impetration (asking for what we need) to name some of the major categories of prayer.
This year, as always, we should count our blessings whoever we are and wherever we are. In the United States of America we should carefully and clearly think of what makes this country great, the essentials that were there from the beginning and that define what we are. By the same token, we should carefully, clearly, and courageously define what is not part of the true fabric of our nation’s very essence. Things that have become an everyday part of American life threaten to destroy the real country, the one the Founding Fathers founded on Christian principles. Anti-human realities such as abortion, euthanasia, fetal stem cell research, human cloning, pornography, and homosexual sexual relations—all of these are foreign to what this country is about and always was about. We should thank God for this, for if this were not true we would have ceased to exist long ago. God has to be first in our lives, not economic prosperity. If you are right with God, the economic factor will fall into place. If not, then greed, fraud, deceit, and every vice under the sun will rule. No one will trust the government, the corporate world, the professions, etc. The moral unraveling precedes the ultimate unraveling of a nation or a world. Chaos is the inevitable result, and death follows close behind.
Immorality is un-American, and a threat to national security. I said that right after 911, and it is more true than ever. In my lifetime I have experienced the moral erosion of our national consciousness. It’s as if large segments of the population had some portion of their brain removed or their eyes blinded. We should recall that all of the “old ways” are not inferior to some of the “new ways.” We must likewise recall that “God’s ways are not our ways. God’s ways are as far above our ways as the heavens are above the earth.” God can’t indeed write straight with crooked lines. He can bring good out of the worst evil, not that the evil should be accepted or countenanced, but when we’ve done all we can do to fight the evil, know that we haven’t lost. Jesus Christ is the “Lamb of God,” and “Prince of Peace” to be sure, but don’t ever forget that He is also “the Lion of the Tribe of Judah.” The violence and power with which God himself will confront and destroy the evil that threatens us far surpasses anything we could do.
So, this Thanksgiving “thank God for God!” God is in charge! Don’t forget that. God is all-good, all-merciful, all-loving, and all-powerful. He will fight the enemies of what is true and good. “If God is for you, who can be against you!” Thank God for your faith and your family, your health and your wealth—no matter how large or small. The spirit of thanksgiving makes a heavy heart lighter. It’ll clear your head of a thousand worries and concerns. One thing alone is important: your personal relationship with the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. If that is right you will be right. If that is right, the entire world can be sinking into hell under the weight of its sins and misery, you will fly above the turmoil, destined for the glory held in store for the sons and daughters of the Lord of the Universe.
Have a blessed and happy Thanksgiving!
Fr. John Corapi

Purgatory blog

One of my readers, Owen, has a blog started to pray one month for the souls in Purgatory. If you have someone you would like him and his family to pray for, go here.
Thanks, Owen; may our Lady of Mercy bless you.

Monday, November 24, 2008

Christmas Challenge

Christmas and charity should go hand in hand. At a time when our thoughts turn to the joyful birth of our Savior, we may also think of those who do not feel joy because of hunger, lack of shelter and clothing, lack of the necessities of life, oppression, abuse, addictions, and so on. There is a reputable Catholic organisation called Chalice; here is their Mission Statement:
Sharing with our Children.
Our Mission:
Chalice proclaims Christ's loving care for the poor and suffering by inspiring our Catholic community to support local initiatives in developing countries primarily through the sponsorship of children and elderly in need.
Our Values:
We are rooted in Catholic social teachings that affirm the sacredness of life, and dignity of all people regardless of colour, nationality, age, gender or creed.
We believe that community members are fully capable of identifying the social conditions that impact their communities and are the best agents to address those conditions and effect positive changes.
We are guided by Christ's example of loving care in all our relationships with one another.
Our Goals:
To alleviate the effects of poverty, by offering an effective and trustworthy sponsorship programme that reflects God's love and mercy in our world. "The Spirit of the Lord is upon me, for he has anointed me (us) to bring the Good News to the poor. He has sent me to proclaim liberty to captives and sight to the blind, to let the oppressed go free." (Luke 4:18)
To increase awareness and mobilize support in our Catholic community for the many children and elderly in developing countries facing conditions of extreme poverty and lack of opportunity. "For I have set you an example, that you should also do as I have done to you." (John 13:15)
Our Objectives:
To establish and maintain sponsor sites that respond to the needs of people struggling with the effects of poverty, particularly the lack of basic education, food, clothing, housing and health.
To support community initiatives of people who share our mission and values.
To monitor all Chalice sponsor sites in order to ensure that those sponsored are properly benefiting from the funds given by our sponsors and other donors, according to our goals.
To provide programme and sponsor site information regularly about Chalice that will be of interest to sponsors and other benefactors.
To provide maximum financial support to our sponsor sites by keeping overhead and administrative costs to a minimum.
To offer presentations and make appeals to Catholic parishes and other interested groups who wish to support the work of Chalice.

Here is the link to their gift catalogue
I am challenging all my blog readers to support them. You can give as little as $10, which will buy chickens or seeds to provide a family with an income; you can sponsor a child for $33 a month, or specify your gift to go towards anything from household needs to education to health needs. Their gift catalogue has many choices. You can even send $5, to go where most needed,which is a good way to get children involved in helping other children- some of our children get more than that in daily spending money!
I am not asking you to tell what you have done or how much you spent, just to help others this Christmas. No matter how little we have in these hard times, there are always others who are more in need than we are.

Friday, November 21, 2008

Wake up call from the Vatican

It seems that my take on the world in my post, Fight or Fade, is echoed in this story out of the Vatican:
Vatican Cardinal: "A New World Order is Gaining Ground"
By John-Henry Westen
ROME, November 20, 2008 (LifeSiteNews.com) - Speaking at the opening of the 23rd plenary assembly for the Pontifical Council for the Laity, the president of the Council, Cardinal Stanislaw Rylko, warned, "The idea of creating a 'new man' completely detached from the Judeo-Christian tradition, a new 'world order,' a new 'global ethic,' is gaining ground."
According to the Vatican newspaper L'Osservatore Romano, the cardinal denounced the "dictatorship of relativism," rampant in Western societies, in which there is a growing "anti-Christian attitude" that makes "attacks on Christians, and particular on Catholics, pass off as politically correct."
Speaking of Christians today he said, "Our true problem is not being a minority, but rather having voluntarily become marginal, irrelevant, because of our lack of courage, so that we will be left alone, because of our mediocrity." "For Christians," Cardinal Rylko added, "the moment has arrived to free themselves from a false inferiority complex … to be valiant witnesses of Christ."
This is, he said, the "hour of the laity," to take on their "responsibility in the diverse fields of public life, from politics to the promotion of life and family, from work to the economy, from education to the formation of youth."
He warned, however, that such faithfulness would come at a personal cost. "Whoever wants to live and act according to the Gospel of Christ has to pay a price, even in the highly liberal societies of the West," he said.
This is exactly what I was talking about. In his editorial, John-Henry Weston has this to say:
LifeSiteNews is placing a lot of emphasis on the reporting of religious developments because we see a return to traditional religious belief and practise as the only answer to the overwhelming problems that the world faces at this time in history. As well, the decline of such belief and practise seems to be the root cause of most of the current problems, including the huge economic crisis. When will we learn?
We don't need to fear defending our faith; we can take our strength in these words of our Savior:
Blessed shall you be when men shall hate you, and when they shall separate you, and shall reproach you, and cast out your name as evil, for the Son of Man's sake.
Be glad in that day, and rejoice, for behold, your reward is great in heaven. (Luke6-22-23)
Christians, and especially Catholics, are under attack throughout the world; from death at the hands of Muslim extremists to being urinated on by homosexuals in California. I pray that we don't weaken under the onslaught of evil that is determined to undermine our faith, that we can stand up to the lawmakers and make our voices heard, that we receive strong leadership from the Vatican and our bishops and priests, and that we, at the grassroots level, can help to implement a return to the strong morals and values that are the foundation of the Catholic Church. Dig in. It's going to be a long, hard battle.

The Presentation


Thursday, November 20, 2008

What freedom?

First the University of Calgary is trying to squelch the pro-life display featuring photos of aborted babies, now the Queens University in Ontario is trying to tell people how to speak! Gimme a break! What are we, a facist ,or dictatorship, or Communist country? What about our right to free speech? What about our freedom of religion??


Speech Police Hired to Roam Queens University Campus
By Tim Waggoner
KINGSTON, ON, November 19, 2008 (LifeSiteNews.com) – Queens University in Kingston, ON is coming under criticism for hiring six "dialogue facilitators" to roam its campus and intervene in student conversations in order to promote “diversity” and deal with what they deem to be any “offensive" material.
The six graduate students from diverse backgrounds have been hired to encourage discussion on race, gender, sexual orientation, ethnicity and other social issues, as well as step-in when they hear conversations that could be deemed "offensive." Each facilitator went through an 11-day training course to prepare them for their roles and have been granted free room and board as well as a yearly stipend as payment.
Critics of the program are questioning what constitutes offensive language, and are worried this initiative will be a step towards effectively squashing free speech rights on the Canadian university.
Social conservatives in Canada have in the last several years expressed increasing alarm at escalating efforts to silence “offensive” speech – efforts that, in practice, have led primarily to the targeting of those with politically incorrect views, particularly Christians with traditional views on sexual morality.
"As Catholics we are very concerned about this because the Church teaches that practicing homosexuality is sinful and homosexual sexual orientation is disordered," said Suresh Dominic, spokesman for Campaign Life Catholic, about the university’s program. "I am wondering now if Catholics at Queens are going to be discriminated against for openly stating their faith."
Dominic's comments are especially significant in light of the number of Canadians who have been brought before the Canadian Human Rights Commission (CHRC) in the last 5-10 years for having defended Christian teaching on homosexuality.
Section 13-1 of the Human Rights Act gives the CHRC authorities the power to deem some speech "hate speech" and has been used quite liberally in attempts to charge many outspoken commentators for committing "hate crimes." These include Christian pastor Steve Boissoin, who was fined and ordered to apologize by a human rights tribunal after publishing a letter to the editor in a local newspaper, expressing his disagreement with homosexual “marriage,” and Scott Brockie, a Christian printer who was fined for refusing to print materials for a homosexual organization.
In a LifeSiteNews.com interview, Theresa Gilbert, executive director of National Campus Life Network, echoed Dominic's concerns, questioning what the "facilitators" might deem to be "offensive."
"We have already had clubs across Canada opposed, banned or discriminated against regardless of what they do but merely because of the fact that they are pro-life," said Gilbert. "Will pro-life students at Queens be discriminated against for their perfectly legitimate pro-live views?"
Other opponents of the Queens program have made jabs at the fact that students are being paid to eavesdrop on other students' conversations – a factor that could suffocate rather than promote constructive conversation on social issues.
"Having a program like this in place could stifle public discussion if people are worried their private conversations are being monitored," said Angela Hickman, managing editor of the Queen's Journal, as reported by the Globe and Mail. "For a lot of people, their opinions get formed in conversations and so stifling that is dangerous."
An editorial in the Queen's Journal said the program "seems to be an inadequate, lacklustre attempt to deal with social inequalities—and especially racism—on campus."
"It's unlikely six facilitators in a crowd of thousands will have much impact on fostering dialogue in residences," it reads.
"On the other hand, if they do become regularly involved in conversations, they risk hostility from students who don't want to be approached in what they consider private social settings. The resulting dialogue likely won't be productive or effective if students feel they're being cornered and become defensive."

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Blog award!

Therese at Aussie Coffee Shop sent me this award: (Thank you, Therese!)
The rules for this award are:
1. Pick ten people and pass this award to them.
2. Then contact them and let them know that you have chosen them and their blog for the award.
3. Also link back to the person who gave you the award.

I haven't had time lately to follow a lot of blogs, so I will pass it on to a few:
Tom in Vegas
Ask Sister Mary Martha
The Inn at The End of The World
The Classic Canadian
Te Deum Laudamus

Monday, November 17, 2008

My Journey, Continued

For me to be able to defend my faith, I must first be at peace with myself. Then I will be able to speak to others in a loving and charitable manner, and be an example to others. Being Catholic is something that I want other people to long for, so that they can experience the joy and peace of heart that comes from living our faith. This is from The Imitation of Christ, and lays it out beautifully:

Goodness and Peace in Man
FIRST keep peace with yourself; then you will be able to bring peace to others. A peaceful man does more good than a learned man. Whereas a passionate man turns even good to evil and is quick to believe evil, the peaceful man, being good himself, turns all things to good.
The man who is at perfect ease is never suspicious, but the disturbed and discontented spirit is upset by many a suspicion. He neither rests himself nor permits others to do so. He often says what ought not to be said and leaves undone what ought to be done. He is concerned with the duties of others but neglects his own.
Direct your zeal, therefore, first upon yourself; then you may with justice exercise it upon those about you. You are well versed in coloring your own actions with excuses which you will not accept from others, though it would be more just to accuse yourself and excuse your brother. If you wish men to bear with you, you must bear with them. Behold, how far you are from true charity and humility which does not know how to be angry with anyone, or to be indignant save only against self!
It is no great thing to associate with the good and gentle, for such association is naturally pleasing. Everyone enjoys a peaceful life and prefers persons of congenial habits. But to be able to live at peace with harsh and perverse men, or with the undisciplined and those who irritate us, is a great grace, a praiseworthy and manly thing.
Some people live at peace with themselves and with their fellow men, but others are never at peace with themselves nor do they bring it to anyone else. These latter are a burden to everyone, but they are more of a burden to themselves. A few, finally, live at peace with themselves and try to restore it to others.
Now, all our peace in this miserable life is found in humbly enduring suffering rather than in being free from it. He who knows best how to suffer will enjoy the greater peace, because he is the conqueror of himself, the master of the world, a friend of Christ, and an heir of heaven.

Sunday, November 16, 2008

Saturday, November 15, 2008

Another new blog

There is another new blog on the block, this one by Steve, the husband of Therese at Aussie Coffee shop. Welcome to Secular Heretic! It's always good when a Catholic dad makes his voice heard.

Thursday, November 13, 2008

Bravo to the US Bishops!

From Life Site News:

US Bishops Issue Stark Warning to Obama over Abortion
By John-Henry Westen BALTIMORE, November 12, 2008 (LifeSiteNews.com) - In a stark warning to President-Elect Barack Obama, Cardinal Francis George of Chicago, president of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB), today warned the Obama Administration, on behalf of all the US bishops, that "aggressive pro-abortion policies, legislation and executive orders will permanently alienate tens of millions of Americans, and would be seen by many as an attack on the free exercise of their religion."
The statement, which was "written at the request and direction of all the Bishops," was released today at the end of the annual fall assembly of the US Conference of Catholic Bishops.

While the message begins on a conciliatory note, the vast majority is directed at the issue of the rights of the unborn. "The bishops of the Catholic Church in the United States welcome this moment of historic transition and look forward to working with President-elect Obama and the members of the new Congress for the common good of all," begins the statement. From there, however, it notes that the 1973 Roe v Wade decision was "bad law" and that the Freedom of Choice Act which Obama has promised to sign is even "more radical."
Cardinal George writes that "the unity desired by President-elect Obama and all Americans at this moment of crisis will be impossible to achieve," if the administration's policies increase abortions.
The full statement follows:
STATEMENT of the President of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops
"If the Lord does not build the house, in vain do its builders labor; if the Lord does not watch over the city, in vain does the watchman keep vigil." (Psalm 127, vs. 1)
The Bishops of the Catholic Church in the United States welcome this moment of historic transition and look forward to working with President-elect Obama and the members of the new Congress for the common good of all. Because of the Church's history and the scope of her ministries in this country, we want to continue our work for economic justice and opportunity for all; our efforts to reform laws around immigration and the situation of the undocumented; our provision of better education and adequate health care for all, especially for women and children; our desire to safeguard religious freedom and foster peace at home and abroad. The Church is intent on doing good and will continue to cooperate gladly with the government and all others working for these goods.
The fundamental good is life itself, a gift from God and our parents. A good state protects the lives of all. Legal protection for those members of the human family waiting to be born in this country was removed when the Supreme Court decided Roe vs. Wade in 1973. This was bad law. The danger the Bishops see at this moment is that a bad court decision will be enshrined in bad legislation that is more radical than the 1973 Supreme Court decision itself.
In the last Congress, a Freedom of Choice Act (FOCA) was introduced that would, if brought forward in the same form today, outlaw any "interference" in providing abortion at will. It would deprive the American people in all fifty states of the freedom they now have to enact modest restraints and regulations on the abortion industry. FOCA would coerce all Americans into subsidizing and promoting abortion with their tax dollars. It would counteract any and all sincere efforts by government and others of good will to reduce the number of abortions in our country.
Parental notification and informed consent precautions would be outlawed, as would be laws banning procedures such as partial-birth abortion and protecting infants born alive after a failed abortion. Abortion clinics would be deregulated. The Hyde Amendment restricting the federal funding of abortions would be abrogated. FOCA would have lethal consequences for prenatal human life.
FOCA would have an equally destructive effect on the freedom of conscience of doctors, nurses and health care workers whose personal convictions do not permit them to cooperate in the private killing of unborn children. It would threaten Catholic health care institutions and Catholic Charities. It would be an evil law that would further divide our country, and the Church should be intent on opposing evil.
On this issue, the legal protection of the unborn, the bishops are of one mind with Catholics and others of good will. They are also pastors who have listened to women whose lives have been diminished because they believed they had no choice but to abort a baby. Abortion is a medical procedure that kills, and the psychological and spiritual consequences are written in the sorrow and depression of many women and men. The bishops are single-minded because they are, first of all, single-hearted.
The recent election was principally decided out of concern for the economy, for the loss of jobs and homes and financial security for families, here and around the world. If the election is misinterpreted ideologically as a referendum on abortion, the unity desired by President-elect Obama and all Americans at this moment of crisis will be impossible to achieve. Abortion kills not only unborn children; it destroys constitutional order and the common good, which is assured only when the life of every human being is legally protected. Aggressively pro-abortion policies, legislation and executive orders will permanently alienate tens of millions of Americans, and would be seen by many as an attack on the free exercise of their religion.
This statement is written at the request and direction of all the Bishops, who also want to thank all those in politics who work with good will to protect the lives of the most vulnerable among us. Those in public life do so, sometimes, at the cost of great sacrifice to themselves and their families; and we are grateful. We express again our great desire to work with all those who cherish the common good of our nation. The common good is not the sum total of individual desires and interests; it is achieved in the working out of a common life based upon good reason and good will for all.
Our prayers accompany President-elect Obama and his family and those who are cooperating with him to assure a smooth transition in government. Many issues demand immediate attention on the part of our elected "watchman." (Psalm 127) May God bless him and our country.

I am so pleased that the Church is getting a backbone over this issue. Better late than never!

My Journey, Continued

For those who choose to fight and not fade, here is a reminder from Thomas A Kempis about the One who will help us to live our faith, living in love with Jesus.


The Intimate Friendship of Jesus
WHEN Jesus is near, all is well and nothing seems difficult. When He is absent, all is hard. When Jesus does not speak within, all other comfort is empty, but if He says only a word, it brings great consolation.
Did not Mary Magdalen rise at once from her weeping when Martha said to her: "The Master is come, and calleth for thee"?
[6] Happy is the hour when Jesus calls one from tears to joy of spirit.
How dry and hard you are without Jesus! How foolish and vain if you desire anything but Him! Is it not a greater loss than losing the whole world? For what, without Jesus, can the world give you? Life without Him is a relentless hell, but living with Him is a sweet paradise. If Jesus be with you, no enemy can harm you.
He who finds Jesus finds a rare treasure, indeed, a good above every good, whereas he who loses Him loses more than the whole world. The man who lives without Jesus is the poorest of the poor, whereas no one is so rich as the man who lives in His grace.
It is a great art to know how to converse with Jesus, and great wisdom to know how to keep Him. Be humble and peaceful, and Jesus will be with you. Be devout and calm, and He will remain with you. You may quickly drive Him away and lose His grace, if you turn back to the outside world. And, if you drive Him away and lose Him, to whom will you go and whom will you then seek as a friend? You cannot live well without a friend, and if Jesus be not your friend above all else, you will be very sad and desolate. Thus, you are acting foolishly if you trust or rejoice in any other. Choose the opposition of the whole world rather than offend Jesus. Of all those who are dear to you, let Him be your special love. Let all things be loved for the sake of Jesus, but Jesus for His own sake.
Jesus Christ must be loved alone with a special love for He alone, of all friends, is good and faithful. For Him and in Him you must love friends and foes alike, and pray to Him that all may know and love Him.
Never desire special praise or love, for that belongs to God alone Who has no equal. Never wish that anyone's affection be centered in you, nor let yourself be taken up with the love of anyone, but let Jesus be in you and in every good man. Be pure and free within, unentangled with any creature.
You must bring to God a clean and open heart if you wish to attend and see how sweet the Lord is. Truly you will never attain this happiness unless His grace prepares you and draws you on so that you may forsake all things to be united with Him alone.
When the grace of God comes to a man he can do all things, but when it leaves him he becomes poor and weak, abandoned, as it were, to affliction. Yet, in this condition he should not become dejected or despair. On the contrary, he should calmly await the will of God and bear whatever befalls him in praise of Jesus Christ, for after winter comes summer, after night, the day, and after the storm, a great calm.

Monday, November 10, 2008

Biden gets told

I was pleased to see that there is a Bishop who is standing up to the power-to-be, in this article from LifeSite News:

Bishop of Diocese Where Biden Received Communion Calls Him to Account over Abortion
By Kathleen Gilbert
TALLAHASSEE, Florida, November 7, 2008 (LifeSiteNews.com) - In a rare show of episcopal mettle, the bishop of Pensacola-Tallahassee swiftly sent VP-elect Joseph Biden a letter after he received communion on Sunday in the diocese, chastising him with "urgency" to examine his conscience carefully before receiving communion again.
Biden, who calls himself a devout Catholic, is an outspoken abortion proponent and as such has incurred automatic excommunication from the Church according to Canon Law.
The bishop witnessed to the Church's teaching that "human life is to be respected from the moment of conception until natural death," a principle of reason and of the common good that he called "knowable to all even beyond the categories of faith."
While not explicitly condemning the VP-Elect's reception of Holy Communion, Bishop John Richard of the Pensacola-Tallahassee diocese reminded Biden that his policies reflect "a profound disconnection" from his obligation as a Catholic "to protect the weakest and most innocent among us: the child in the womb."
Quoting the U.S. bishops' 2004 document Catholics in Public Life, Bishop Richard recalled the words of St. Paul to warn that, "'Whoever ... eats the bread or drinks the cup of the Lord in an unworthy manner will be guilty of profaning the Body and Blood of the Lord.'”
The U.S. bishops had explained, using St. Paul's admonition as a reference, that "all must examine their consciences as to their worthiness to receive the Body and Blood of our Lord.
"This examination includes fidelity to the moral teaching of the Church in personal and public life ... Respect for the Holy Eucharist, in particular, demands that it be received worthily.”
Bishop Richard concluded his letter with the words, "I pray that the Catholic faith you have been raised in, the faith by which you pray, and the life of virtue which flows from both may strengthen you so that you may have the strength to ... live by the virtue of fortitude as you proclaim your support to the Person of Christ in the most vulnerable of his members: the pre-born child."
Sen. Biden has come under fire from Church leaders on several occasions during the election season for misrepresenting Church teaching as compatible with his pro-abortion agenda.
To read Bishop John Richard's full letter to Sen. Biden, go to:
http://www.ptdiocese.org/documents/Ricard%20to%20Biden%2011_04_08.pdf

Friday, November 7, 2008

Fight or Fade

It is time for every Catholic, indeed, every Christian, to take a stand on our faith. We are being assaulted on every front, from our babes in the womb to our elderly and sick; from our work places to our churches, our hospitals, and schools. Everywhere there is an anti-Christian, and especially anti-Catholic, agenda. We have a choice: You can say, it doesn't concern me; I am a good Catholic- I go to Church, receive the Sacraments, I pray every day. You can fade into the background and just live out your life. Or you can choose to fight. That is the hardest choice. It means facing ridicule and scorn. It means speaking up against all the evil that is being forced on us by politicians and people with culture of death agendas. It means setting an example for others. It means financially supporting those who are fighting the good fight. It means taking a stand with your children and not letting them fall prey to the undermining of fashion trends and peer pressure. It means taking the time to make your voice heard by your political representative on issues that are being voted on in Parliament or the Senate. It means inspiring others in your family and friends to renew their religious faith so that they too will not be steamrolled by a society hellbent on destruction. It means getting up off your couch and your comfort zone. It means the salvation of your soul.
I would dearly love to become a hermit at this time; just fade away to a cabin in the wilderness and spend the rest of my life in prayer, as my 78 year old mother is doing. ( God Bless her!) But I am certain that God gave me this outspoken and tenacious personality for another reason. So I am going to stand up and be counted, no matter the cost. After all, I have a good example to follow:


Wednesday, November 5, 2008

What have you done?

I am sad that our Rosary novena wasn't powerful enough to prevent Obama -Bi(n La)den from getting elected and it breaks my heart to think of the countless unborn souls whose mothers will legally murder them once Obama signs more abortion laws into being. For those souls, Obama is a terrorist. He is known to support killing babies who survive partial birth abortion. To condone a sin and encourage it makes you guilty of that sin too.Here is my take on why they refuse to admit that a person is human until after it's born: if they do, then they have legalised murder through legalising abortion, and if they do that, then killing of any person will be legal. Of course, the euthanasia laws they are trying to ram through are doing just that. It is the beginning of the fall of the US Empire. The devil is grinning. He is dancing with glee.

Saturday, November 1, 2008

Our Duty to the Holy Souls

We all have loved ones who have died, and most of us as Catholics know to pray for their souls. Here is what St. Alphonsus Ligouri says in my little book, Purgatorian Manual:

"The practice of recommending to God the souls in Purgatory, that He may mitigate the great pains they suffer, and that He may soon bring them to His glory, is most pleasing to the Lord and most profitable to us. For these blessed souls are His eternal spouses, and most grateful are they to those who obtain their deliverance from prison, or even a mitigation of their torments. When, therefore, they arrive in Heaven, they will be sure to remember all who have prayed for them. It is a pious belief that God manifests to them our prayers in their behalf, that they may also pray for us. It is true that these blessed souls are not in a state to pray for themselves, because they are, so to speak, criminals atoning for their faults. However, because they are dear to God, they can pray for us, and obtain for us the divine graces. St. Catherine of Bologna, when she wished to obtain any grace, had recourse to the souls in Purgatory, and her prayers were heard immediately. She declared that, by praying to these Holy Souls, she obtained many favours which she had sought through the intersession of the saints without obtaining them. The graces which devout persons are said to have received through these holy souls are innumerable."
He goes on to say that it is our Christian duty to relieve them by our suffrages, for they cannot help themselves and so are in need of our assistance.

Friday, October 31, 2008

From the Pope to Canadians

Pope To Canada: "I Know it is Possible" For You to Turn to a Culture of Life and Respect Natural Marriage
By John-Henry Westen VATICAN CITY, October 30, 2008 (LifeSiteNews.com)
- Today Pope Benedict XVI addressed Canadians as he greeted the new Canadian Ambassador to the Holy See, Anne Leahy.
In his address, the Holy Father noted his concern for Canada's growing lack of respect for life and family, despite the fact that Canadian culture has Catholicism as one of its cornerstones and has been recognized as a champion of human rights and dignity.
"Nevertheless, profound changes can be noticed today, which are seen in different sectors and at times cause concern to the point of asking ourselves if it does not mean a regression in the understanding of the human being," he said. "These changes mainly concern the areas of defense and the promotion of life and the family based on natural marriage."

"In this context," said the Pope, "I would like to encourage all Canadians to reflect deeply on the path that Christ calls us to follow." That path, he said "is bright and full of truth." Speaking of turning to a culture of life, Benedict XVI said, "I know it is possible and that your country is capable." He said, "A culture of life can nourish anew the personal and social existence of Canada as a whole."
"To help," said the Holy Father, "it seems necessary to redefine the meaning of freedom of expression too often invoked to justify certain excesses." He noted that freedom is often wrongly perceived as an absolute value, disregarding its divine origin and its communal dimension. In such an interpretation of freedom, he suggested, "only the individual can decide and choose the form, characteristics, and ends of life, death, and marriage."
"True freedom," he observed, "is ultimately based on and develops in God." He added: "It is a gift that can be accepted as the seed from which the person and society can grow responsibly and be enriched. The exercise of this freedom implies reference to a natural moral law that is universal, which precedes and unifies all rights and duties. In this perspective, I would like to show my support to all the Canadian Bishops' initiatives in favor of family life and thus of the dignity of the human being."

Come on, Canada; lets lead in following Rome instead of following the US.

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

A message from Fr. Corapi

Fr. Corapi has requested that this video be shared, so I am doing just that:
http://www.fathercorapi.com/election.aspx
It is posted on You Tube in three parts, and is called Eleventh Hour Election Alert. God bless Fr. Corapi in his efforts!

Monday, October 27, 2008

Rosary novena reminder

If you are thinking about not praying the Rosary Novena- here is a reminder from Fr. Corapi:
I strongly urge every one of you to make a Novena and pray the Rosary to Our Lady of Victory between October 27th and Election Day, November 4th. Pray that God’s will be done and the most innocent and utterly vulnerable of our brothers and sisters will be protected from this barbaric and grossly sinful blight on society that is abortion. No woman, and no man, has the right to choose to murder an innocent human being. May God grant us the wisdom, knowledge, understanding, and counsel to form our conscience in accordance with authentic Catholic teaching, and then vote that well-formed Catholic conscience.

Saturday, October 25, 2008

My Journey, Continued

In my last post, I talked about the turmoil in the world and the need to give time to God. This excerpt from The Imitation of Christ is exactly what I meant:

The Inward Conversation of Christ
with the Faithful Soul


"I WILL hear what the Lord God will speak in me."

Blessed is the soul who hears the Lord speaking within her, who receives the word of consolation from His lips. Blessed are the ears that catch the accents of divine whispering, and pay no heed to the murmurings of this world.
Blessed indeed are the ears that listen, not to the voice which sounds without, but to the truth which teaches within. Blessed are the eyes which are closed to exterior things and are fixed upon those which are interior. Blessed are they who penetrate inwardly, who try daily to prepare themselves more and more to understand mysteries. Blessed are they who long to give their time to God, and who cut themselves off from the hindrances of the world.
Consider these things, my soul, and close the door of your senses, so that you can hear what the Lord your God speaks within you. "I am your salvation," says your Beloved. "I am your peace and your life. Remain with Me and you will find peace. Dismiss all passing things and seek the eternal. What are all temporal things but snares? And what help will all creatures be able to give you if you are deserted by the Creator?" Leave all these things, therefore, and make yourself pleasing and faithful to your Creator so that you may attain to true happiness.

Friday, October 24, 2008

All the world needs now....

is prayer, sweet prayer..... I find that there is so much going on in the world that is upsetting right now that I have to step back and just give time to God, and remember to trust Him, to pray to Him, and to ask the intersession of Our Lady. Also I would like to remind you that tomorrow is the day to start a novena for the Holy Souls in Purgatory to end on Nov. 2, All Souls Day. Please join me in this novena, in which I will ask the Holy Souls to protect the unborn.
Did you know that St. Joseph is the patron of the unborn? So is Our Lady of Guadalupe. So I think that I will pray to them concerning the upcoming election in the States, and for all pregnant women who are considering abortion to do God's will and not their own.

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

A very powerful video

Mark from Dominican Idaho left me this link on a comment, please watch this video and show it to everyone you know who is thinking of voting for Barack Obama and everyone you know who is pro-abortion.

Economic collapse and abortion

I recently signed the petition to deny the Order of Canada to abortionist H. Morgentaler, which was presented through Life Site News. I now get a regular email from them, and I tell you, it is frightening what is going on in the world; euthanasia , organ donation, cloning, and of course, abortion. Do women who have abortions even consider what the long term effects of their self-centered act costs? As a woman, it is scary to me to think of how women are affecting the world! I don't understand how governments can be aware of this information and still aggressively promote abortion. Please join me in the Rosary novena as recommended by Fr. Corapi in my post below; starting on Oct. 27.
Here is an article on the subject from Life Site News: (the quotes in italics are my emphasis.)

Researcher: Economic Impact of Abortion in U.S. Since 1970 - $35 to $70 Trillion"No matter how you slice it, aggressive ‘population control’ exacts a huge price in future economic growth "
By Thaddeus M. Baklinski
MT. FREEDOM, NJ, October 20, 2008 (LifeSiteNews.com) - Researcher Dennis M. Howard, president of the pro-life group Movement for a Better America, who has been tracking the economic impact of abortion since 1995, has shown that the 50.5 million surgical abortions since 1970 have cost the U.S. $35 trillion dollars in lost Gross Domestic Product (GDP).
If the number of missing children includes those aborted by IUDs, RU-486, sterilization and abortifacients, the figure climbs to over $70 trillion.
Originally calculating losses in "downstream tax revenues as an index of the cost of abortion," which showed only government revenue loss, Howard then turned to using lost GDP (GDP per capita per year times the cumulative number of abortions since 1970) as a measure of total economic cost.
"No matter how you slice it, aggressive ‘population control’ exacts a huge price in future economic growth that can never be recovered. Indeed, it is a loss that reverberates through all future generations. Without an enormous new Baby Boom lasting another 40 or 50 years, that growth is lost forever. We don’t have a debt crisis. We have a death crisis," wrote Howard.
Howard mentions the collapse of the former Soviet Union as an example of a nation whose demographic implosion has contributed to its economic breakdown.
"The main reason for their collapse was internal - 300 abortions for every 100 live births for decades. Their future is still grim. Right now, there are not enough younger women to reverse their population decline. Indeed, they are expected to lose another 40 million people between now and 2050."
Barry McLerran, producer of the film "Demographic Winter: the decline of the human family," said Russia's population is currently declining by approximately 750,000 people a year. Efforts by the Russian government to boost its population, including paying parents the equivalent of US $9,200 for every child after the first one, are failing.
Referring to current worldwide financial crisis, Howard recalled his 1997 report titled, “The Abortion Bomb: America’s Demographic Disaster.” In it he said, “I see little hope that we can avoid an eventual crash on Wall Street that will make the 1930’s look like cashing in your cards after a bad game of Monopoly."
He also predicted, "It will last longer than the Great Depression, and if it takes a war to get out of it - as happened with World War II - America as we know it may not survive."
The societal cost of abortion, both economic and moral, has been studied for years, but very little mainstream media attention is given to the findings.
In his book “The Cost of Abortion” (Four Winds, LaGrange, GA, 1995) Lawrence F. Roberge gathered and analyzed statistics on the number of abortions and the correlation between abortion and the decline in fertility and an increase in medical complications such as Asherman's syndrome.
Roberge's research showed the direct connection between the number of abortions and declines in GDP, which involve not only the lost potential of the aborted children, but the spin-off effects of, for example, the elimination of 950,000 to 1.2 million potential teaching jobs.
"There is a certain time and place for everyone," Roberge says, "and what happens is that, when you remove a life, it has a rippling effect throughout society. And it has an effect on the growth and future prosperity of that nation. Unless we take good care of [our] future and cultivate it instead of destroy it, we will have no future for this nation."
An article by National Right to Life (NRL) Research Assistant Laura Antkowiak published in 1998 titled, “What Do 40 Million Lost Lives Mean?” gave further evidence of the economic impact of abortion in the US. (
http://www.nrlc.org/news/2001/NRL01/laura.html)
A 1998 feature on the cost of a child that appeared in U.S. News & World Report, declared, "A child, financially speaking, looks more like a high-priced consumer item with no warranty. It's the decision to remain childless that offers the real investment opportunity." Antkowiak, however, responded, stating, "The economic argument designed by pro-abortionists collapses when we examine children's place in the economy as consumers, workers, innovators, and taxpayers."
"The simple response to the abortion advocates' case is that most children inevitably grow into adults. They work and pay taxes, or otherwise spend, save, invest, and innovate," Antkowiak points out. "Economists attest that even before these children reach adulthood, their very belonging to a large and growing population spurs economic growth."
In 2006 Steven Mosher, president of the Population Research Institute (PRI), warned that the aging population will produce a dangerous imbalance between those who produce (GDP) and those are dependent on them.
"When you look at the projections that show our population aging rapidly over the next few decades, when you see our economy and government programs such as Social Security risking bankruptcy, you can see that the United States' annual 0.9% population growth rate is not enough," said Mosher.
"America's baby boomers didn't have many children on average, and as a result, our country faces a gray dawn. Even our currently high immigration levels haven't made up the difference."
Joseph A. D'Agostino, Vice President for Communications at PRI added, "According to United Nations figures, the percentage of the American population 65 or over will rise from 12.3% today to 20.6% by 2050. The proportion of Americans 80 or over will rise from 3.6% to 7.3% of the population. Our worker-to-retiree ratio is already at a dangerous 3-to-1.
"By 2050, it will be 2-to-1," D’Agostino said. "And those retirees will be living much longer than they do today thanks to beneficial improvements in health care."

Sunday, October 19, 2008

Friday, October 17, 2008

Attention Prayer Warriors

My sister at Salve Regina has a great post on the need for prayer in the spiritual battle being fought in the US elections. Fr. Corapi also is calling for prayer in this cause; here is his latest newsletter from my email inbox:

A Call for a Rosary Novena
Among the most important titles we have in the Catholic Church for the Blessed Virgin Mary are Our Lady of Victory and Our Lady of the Rosary. These titles can be traced back to one of the most decisive times in the history of the world and Christendom. The Battle of Lepanto took place on October 7 (date of feast of Our Lady of Rosary), 1571. This proved to be the most crucial battle for the Christian forces against the radical Muslim navy of Turkey. Pope Pius V led a procession around St. Peter’s Square in Vatican City praying the Rosary. He showed true pastoral leadership in recognizing the danger posed to Christendom by the radical Muslim forces, and in using the means necessary to defeat it. Spiritual battles require spiritual weapons, and this more than anything was a battle that had its origins in the spiritual order—a true battle between good and evil.

Today we have a similar spiritual battle in progress—a battle between the forces of good and evil, light and darkness, truth and lies, life and death. If we do not soon stop the genocide of abortion in the United States, we shall run the course of all those that prove by their actions that they are enemies of God—total collapse, economic, social, and national. The moral demise of a nation results in the ultimate demise of a nation. God is not a disinterested spectator to the affairs of man. Life begins at conception. This is an unalterable formal teaching of the Catholic Church. If you do not accept this you are a heretic in plain English. A single abortion is homicide. The more than 48,000,000 abortions since Roe v. Wade in the United States constitute genocide by definition. The group singled out for death—unwanted, unborn children.
No other issue, not all other issues taken together, can constitute a proportionate reason for voting for candidates that intend to preserve and defend this holocaust of innocent human life that is abortion.
I strongly urge every one of you to make a Novena and pray the Rosary to Our Lady of Victory between October 27th and Election Day, November 4th. Pray that God’s will be done and the most innocent and utterly vulnerable of our brothers and sisters will be protected from this barbaric and grossly sinful blight on society that is abortion. No woman, and no man, has the right to choose to murder an innocent human being. May God grant us the wisdom, knowledge, understanding, and counsel to form our conscience in accordance with authentic Catholic teaching, and then vote that well-formed Catholic conscience.
God Bless You
Fr. John Corapi

Thursday, October 16, 2008

Coffee Catholic Blog

I don't usually get political on my blog, but I think that every voice counts in the battle against the evils of today's society and the direction that it is taking our youth. I just found this blog courtesy of a post on Aussie Coffee Shop and I find it very interesting, no-holds-barred, and fierce! She has a good grasp on the damage done to the whole world by the feminist movement, and some pretty scary insight on where it can lead us. The progression of evil caused by the acceptance of abortion is escalating, and we need to stop it in its tracks. If we don't all stand and be counted in this fight, we will only have ourselves to blame. We have formidable enemies in our school systems, who are infringing on parents rights to make decisions for their children. And our children are the future- and they are more in need of moral guidance now than at any time in history because they are being bombarded by the acceptance of evil in every walk of life. It's past time for us to get tough. It may even be too late, but we must hope and pray that there will be an end to this moral destruction. It has to start in the home and family. It has to start with you.

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

St Teresa of Avila

Today is the Memorial of St Teresa of Avila, my patron saint. I am blessed to have this very great saint as my patron. Most of us know her as a Doctor of the Church, about her great devotion to St. Joseph, and of her writings on mental prayer- her book, The Interior Castle, is on my must buy list. What many of us do not know is how much she suffered physically as well as spiritually, and the part it played in her devotion to St. Joseph and in her spiritual growth. I will let her tell you:
....... I was in such a state that only the Lord can know what intolerable sufferings I experienced. My tongue was bitten to pieces; nothing had passed my lips; and because of this and of my great weakness my throat was choking me so that I could not even take water. All my bones seemed to be out of joint and there was a terrible confusion in my head. As a result of the torments I had suffered during these days, I was all doubled up, like a ball, and no more able to move arm, foot, hand or head than if I had been dead, unless others moved them for me. I could move, I think, only one finger of my right hand. It was impossible to let anyone come to see me, for I was in such a state of distress that I could not endure it. They used to move me in a sheet, one taking one end and another the other. This lasted until Easter Sunday.[31] My only alleviation was that, if no one came near me, my pains often ceased; and when I had rested a little I used to think I was getting well. For I was afraid my patience would fail me; so I was very glad when I found myself without such sharp and constant pains, although I could hardly endure the terrible cold fits of quartan ague, from which I still suffered and which were very severe. I still had a dreadful distaste for food.
I was now so eager to return to the convent that they had me taken there. So, instead of the dead body they had expected, the nuns received a living soul; though the body was worse than dead and distressing to behold. My extreme weakness cannot be described, for by this time I was nothing but bones. As I have said, I remained in this condition for more than eight months, and my paralysis, though it kept improving, continued for nearly three years. When I began to get about on my hands and knees, I praised God. All this I bore with great resignation, and, except at the beginning, with great joy; for none of it could compare with the pains and torments which I had suffered at first. I was quite resigned to the will of God, even if He had left me in this condition for ever. My great yearning, I think, was to get well so that I might be alone when I prayed, as I had been taught to be -- there was no possibility of this in the infirmary. I made my confession very frequently, and talked a great deal about God, in such a way that all were edified and astonished at the patience which the Lord gave me; for if it had not come from His Majesty's hand it would have seemed impossible to be able to endure such great sufferings with such great joy.
It was a wonderful thing for me to have received the grace which God had granted me through prayer, for this made me realize what it was to love Him. After a short time I found these virtues were renewed within me, although not in great strength, for they were not sufficient to uphold me in righteousness. I never spoke ill of anyone in the slightest degree, for my usual practice was to avoid all evil-speaking. I used to remind myself that I must not wish or say anything about anyone which I should not like to be said of me. I was extremely particular about observing this rule on all possible occasions, although I was not so perfect as not to fail now and then when faced with difficult situations. Still, that was my usual habit; and those who were with me and had to do with me were so much struck by it that they made it a habit too. It came to be realized that in my presence people could turn their backs to me and yet be quite safe; and so, too, they were with my friends and kinsfolk and those who learned from me. But in other respects I shall have to give a strict account to God for the bad example which I set them. May it please His Majesty to forgive me, for I have been the cause of much wrongdoing, though my intentions were not so harmful as were the actions which resulted from them.
My desire for solitude continued and I was fond of speaking and conversing about God; if I found anyone with whom I could do so, it gave me more joy and recreation than indulgence in any of the refinements (which are really coarsenesses) of the conversation of the world. I communicated and confessed very much more frequently -- and this by my own wish; I loved reading good books; I was most sincerely penitent at having offended God; and I remember that often I dared not pray because I was afraid of the very deep distress which I should feel at having offended Him, and which was like a severe punishment. This continued to grow upon me and became such a torment that I do not know with what I can compare it. And its being greater or less had nothing to do with any fear of mine, for it would come when I thought of the favours which the Lord was giving me in prayer, and of all that I owed Him, and when I saw how ill I was requiting Him. I could not bear it; and I would grow very angry with myself at shedding so many tears for my faults, when I saw how little I improved and how neither my resolutions nor the trouble I took were sufficient to keep me from falling again when an occasion presented itself. My tears seemed to me deceptive and my faults the greater because I was conscious of the great favour which the Lord bestowed upon me in granting me these tears and this great repentance. I used to try to make my confession as soon as possible after I had fallen; and, I think, did all I could to return to grace. The whole trouble lay in my not cutting off the occasions of sin at the root, and in the scant help given me by my confessors. For, if they had told me how dangerous was the path I was taking and how incumbent upon me it was not to indulge in these conversations, I feel quite sure I could never have endured remaining in mortal sin for even a day with the knowledge that I was doing so. All these tokens of the fear of God came to me in prayer. The chief of them was that my fear was always swallowed up
[32] in love, for I never thought about punishment. All the time I was so ill, I kept a strict watch over my conscience with respect to mortal sin. O God, how I longed for health that I might serve Thee better! And that was the cause of all my wrongdoing.
For when I found that, while still so young, I was so seriously paralysed, and that earthly doctors had been unable to cure me, I resolved to seek a cure from heavenly doctors, for, though I bore my sickness with great joy, I none the less desired to be well again. I often reflected that, if I were to grow well and then to incur damnation, it would be better for me to remain as I was; but still I believed that I should serve God much better if I recovered my health. That is the mistake we make: we do not leave ourselves entirely in the Lord's hands; yet He knows best what is good for us.
I began by having Masses said for me, and prayers which had been fully approved; for I was never fond of other kinds of devotion which some people practise -- especially women -- together with ceremonies which I could never endure, but for which they have a great affection. Since then it has been explained to me that such things are unseemly and superstitious. I took for my advocate and lord the glorious Saint Joseph and commended myself earnestly to him; and I found that this my father and lord delivered me both from this trouble and also from other and greater troubles concerning my honour
[33] and the loss of my soul, and that he gave me greater blessings than I could ask of him. I do not remember even now that I have ever asked anything of him which he has failed to grant. I am astonished at the great favours which God has bestowed on me through this blessed saint, and at the perils from which He has freed me, both in body and in soul. To other saints the Lord seems to have given grace to succour us in some of our necessities but of this glorious saint my experience is that he succours us in them all and that the Lord wishes to teach us that as He was Himself subject to him on earth (for, being His guardian and being called His father, he could command Him) just so in Heaven He still does all that he asks. This has also been the experience of other persons whom I have advised to commend themselves to him; and even to-day there are many who have great devotion to him through having newly experienced this truth.
I used to try to keep his feast with the greatest possible solemnity
[34]; but, though my intentions were good, I would observe it with more vanity than spirituality, for I always wanted things to be done very meticulously and well. I had this unfortunate characteristic that, if the Lord gave me grace to do anything good, the way I did it was full of imperfections and extremely faulty. I was very assiduous and skilful in wrongdoing and in my meticulousness and vanity. May the Lord forgive me. I wish I could persuade everyone to be devoted to this glorious saint, for I have great experience of the blessings which he can obtain from God. I have never known anyone to be truly devoted to him and render him particular services who did not notably advance in virtue, for he gives very real help to souls who commend themselves to him. For some years now, I think, I have made some request of him every year on his festival and I have always had it granted. If my petition is in any way ill directed, he directs it aright for my greater good.
If I were a person writing with authority, I would gladly describe, at greater length and in the minutest detail, the favours which this glorious saint has granted to me and to others. But in order not to do more than I have been commanded I shall have to write about many things briefly, much more so than I should wish, and at unnecessarily great length about others: in short, I must act like one who has little discretion in all that is good. I only beg, for the love of God, that anyone who does not believe me will put what I say to the test, and he will see by experience what great advantages come from his commending himself to this glorious patriarch and having devotion to him. Those who practise prayer should have a special affection for him always. I do not know how anyone can think of the Queen of the Angels, during the time that she suffered so much with the Child Jesus, without giving thanks to Saint Joseph for the way he helped them. If anyone cannot find a master to teach him how to pray, let him take this glorious saint as his master and he will not go astray. May the Lord grant that I have not erred in venturing to speak of him; for though I make public acknowledgment of my devotion to him, in serving and imitating him I have always failed. He was true to his own nature when he cured my paralysis and gave me the power to rise and walk; and I am following my own nature in using this favour so ill.