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Showing posts from July, 2009

St. Ignatius of Loyola

Taking a break from health care reform and enjoying the feast of St. Ignatius of Loyola. I know that if one of my sons or maybe one day a grandson became a priest, I would feel blessed. But I think I would feel a special grace if he chose to be a Jesuit. More than a few Jesuits have raised my eyebrows, but those who are truly faithful to Ignatian spirituality are like the Marines of the clergy--simply awesome. They just inspire one to see God in all things and do all things for the greater glory of God.

St. Ignatius of Loyola, ora pro nobis

Representative Gordon enables federal funding of abortion

I posted here about the defeat of the House amendment to ban federal funding of abortion in the health care reform bill. President Obama via his staffer Tina Tchen has assured Planned Parenthood that abortion will be part of the health reform package. Representative Bart Gordon (D-TN) aims to help President Obama keep that promise.The initial vote on the Stupak amendment that would ban federal funding of abortion passed the amendment. However, in a strategic move, Chairman Waxman called for a second vote and Representative Bart Gordon changed his vote. The amendment failed.In its place the House committee passed the Capps amendment:Although the amendment’s language appears to do away with the abortion mandate, Capitol Hill pro-lifers note that it explicitly permits the Secretary to include abortion in the services offered by the public plan. Indeed, if the Hyde amendment is reversed, the amendment would actually require that the public plan cover abortions.With regard to the massive s…

The Greatest Organization on Earth

As I posted earlier, I just published an article over at Examiner.com about the DeLauro-Ryan bill. I tried to provide documentation of how this was just a push to increase the funding for Planned Parenthood. I also provided documentation of the racist origins, the enabling of sexual abuse of minors, as well as the status of PP as the largest purveyor of abortion in the country. My article prompted this comment from a reader:

KMcK - This is one of the reasons I happily vote for DeLauro. Planned Parenthood is one of the greatest organizations on the face of this Earth and the best thing we can do is support them.

Perhaps some prayers are in order. I would also welcome any of you who would like to help me offer charitable correction to this commenter.

Finally!

Finally! Someone besides Fox News and bloggers are talking about the lack of true journalism when it comes to President Obama. WTOP Radio is the leading source of local news in the D.C. Metro area. Mark Plotkin of WTOP offered this commentary on the White House Press Corps:

I don't fault the President for trying to control the press. But I ask you, why does the press go along? There is not one moment of spontaneity. The questioners are tipped off, in advance, by the White House and they behave accordingly. No. Not one questions about Iraq. Not one questions about Afghanistan, where American troops have had the worst month of fatalities in eight years. These guys, and women, are not journalists. They're enablers.





Update: I know it is just a coincidence that after WTOP published this commentary, their web site went down.

Stop the Abortion Mandate!

Please make time this Thursday Evening, July 23, 2009 for an important webcast. At 9:00 PM (Eastern) Pro-life and Pro-family advocates will join in an educational effort:

The live event will be approximately 70 minutes long. If you have access to the Internet -- even with a dial-up connection -- you can listen in on the live webcast audio and ask questions.

During this nationwide event, you will discover:
• The shocking facts about the sweeping legislation that the political power brokers are trying to ram through before Congress goes on summer recess...
• The devastating implications of the proposed mandates -- facts the abortion industry doesn't want Americans to hear...
• Why respected leaders, national organizations, and pro-life people are joining together in record numbers to challenge this attempted power-grab...
• The exact action steps YOU can take to make a difference at this crucial moment...
• ... And much more!

You can find out more and regi…

Rationing Health Care: What is Catholic Teaching?

If you read the New York Times Magazine this weekend, you will see a lengthy article by Princeton professor Peter Singer. In this article he argues for health care rationing. Read this article very carefully. This paragraph seems to capture the moral problem with his reasoning:

As a first take, we might say that the good achieved by health care is the number of lives saved. But that is too crude. The death of a teenager is a greater tragedy than the death of an 85-year-old, and this should be reflected in our priorities. We can accommodate that difference by calculating the number of life-years saved, rather than simply the number of lives saved. If a teenager can be expected to live another 70 years, saving her life counts as a gain of 70 life-years, whereas if a person of 85 can be expected to live another 5 years, then saving the 85-year-old will count as a gain of only 5 life-years. That suggests that saving one teenager is equivalent to saving 14 85-year-olds. These are, of course…

I don't have all the answers--but neither does the President or the Congress

President Obama is ready to drop over one trillion dollars on a health care reform initiative. Let me be clear. Every human being is entitled to basic health care. Our current health care system is not doing an adequate job of providing basic health care to every American. However, I am not an impulse shopper. I want to know what I am getting for my money. We do not know what we are getting with this health care initiative, because the health care is yet to be determined by a Benefits Advisory Council. Let me clarify what we do know and more importantly what we do not know.Health insurance is not the same thing as health care. Right now, all anyone is talking about is making sure those 50 million Americans without insurance get health insurance. Great. Now tell me what will be different because those 50 million people have insurance. For every sob story you can tell me about how someone didn’t have insurance and couldn’t get some sort of care they needed I can tell you another sob sto…

A new low for partisan politics

Felix Sanchez, the Chief Executive Officer of TerraCom, a government and public relations firm in Washington D.C., is propagating a digital image of Our Lady of Guadalupe with the Blessed Virgin’s face replaced with the face of Sonia Sotomayor. Above the image he writes the words "Confirm Sonia Maria Sotomayor". As a Catholic American woman of Mexican heritage, I find the politicization of this sacred image revolting.
May the real Our Lady of Guadalupe pray for us!


H/T Creative Minority Report

Seeking Truth

The Episcopal Church is holding its General Convention this week in Anaheim, California.This is where they make their polity. They decide who will be considered saints. It is very educational to watch. Imagine the Catholic Church without the Magisterium. Imagine Voice of the Faithful running the Church. The blog Stand Firm has been providing complete coverage of this event. This post comes from the debate over a resolution to allow someone who is in an active gay or lesbian relationship to be ordained to any ministry within the Episcopal church.As a matter of background, in 2003 the Episcopal church did ordain as bishop a gay man who was in an active homosexual relationship. This caused great consternation in parts of the Anglican communion. In 2006 the Episcopal church voted at their General Convention to refrain from ordaining any other gay or lesbians as bishop until some sort of consensus on this issue could be reached within the communion. The resolution being debated does away w…

The company he keeps

Okay. So President Obama has one appointee that thinks bloggers need to be corralled because they are stirring up too much trouble. Now we find he has another appointee, John Holdren, the "science czar" who wrote a book saying forced abortions and mass sterilizations are needed to save the planet. And the "car czar" Steven Rattner is resigning amid questions about his dealings with the New York state pension fund. Does this say anything about the President's judgment? Just asking.

Obama official wants to muzzle the blogosphere!

Read this while you still can!

When it comes to the First Amendment, Team Obama believes in Global Chilling. Cass Sunstein, a Harvard Law professor who has been appointed to a shadowy post that will grant him powers that are merely mind-boggling, explicitly supports using the courts to impose a "chilling effect" on speech that might hurt someone's feelings. He thinks that the bloggers have been rampaging out of control and that new laws need to be written to corral them.

Evangelizing Catholic Aggies

My oldest son graduated from Texas A&M and was a member of the student Catholic community at St. Mary’s in College Station, TX. My future daughter-in-law was received into the Catholic Church at St. Mary's this past Easter. I can give you first-hand testimony that there is an amazing Catholic presence at Texas A&M University. But don’t take my word for it. Take a look at this awesome evangelization program Aggie Catholics started and are sharing with college communities across the country and around the world:Ask A Catholic A Question is a program of evangelization from St. Mary's Catholic Center at Texas A&M University. The program's success on-campus was followed by a reputation, which has spread across the country. Several other campus ministries, organizations, and individuals asked for a "how-to" manual, which we are happy to offer both through this website and the AACAQ Manual (pdf) available for download.Another sign of the incredible Catholic …

United Breaks Guitars

This guy is really talented and what a creative way to get your message across. I think he captured the "indifferent employee" perfectly. They don't just work for airlines. I think I ran into them at Walmart on Friday!

Richie Rich Award 2009

Today I assisted at Mass at St. Raymond’s in Fairfax Station. This isn’t my home parish but one that I often attend. What I love about living in the Diocese of Arlington is that virtually every parish is faithful in its teaching and liturgy. Today at Mass there was a visiting priest. He too offered solid catechesis from the pulpit. He spoke about hard facts: Jesus Christ is a Divine Person. He took on our human nature to redeem us from the death of Original Sin. Each of us has an immortal soul. Each of us will one day have a resurrected immortal body. Whether this immortal body and soul spends eternity in Heaven or in Hell depends on how well we do God’s will here on earth. God is merciful, but we have to do our part.

Did your parish mention Caritas in Veritate, the Pope’s latest Encyclical? We did not hear about it from the pulpit, but Father Gould gave a link to it in the Sunday bulletin. He also printed the opening passage of this document in the bulletin. He followed it with this …

Abortion is not a partisan issue

A few weeks ago a nice gentleman knocked on my door and told me he was a candidate for the Virginia House of Delegates. He was going to knock on every door in his district to try and win our votes. I didn’t recognize his name so I took some of his literature and thanked him for stopping by. I checked out his web site. What did I find? One of his first fundraisers was sponsored by Planned Parenthood. So today when I received a phone call from his campaign asking me how I planned to vote, I told them I am voting for the pro-life candidate which their candidate is definitely not. The woman who called me did not try to show how her candidate could be viewed in a pro-life manner. She agreed that if I was looking for a pro-life candidate, Greg Werkheiser was not the candidate for me. She then said, “Do you always vote Republican?” I had to tell her I always vote pro-life. This is not a partisan issue.

Fortunately, there are some Democrats in the United States House of Representatives who als…

Sigh!

Today I submitted my final paper for the National Catholic Bioethics Center Certification in Bioethics Course. Once that is accepted and deemed passing, I will receive my certification. This has been a fascinating year of study. My final paper was a moral argument against age-based rationing of health care. I will write more about that later. Right now I am just going to breathe easily for a little bit as this item that has been a constant on my to-do list is finally done. I won't actually celebrate until I get the word that I passed.

Sane Commentary on Caritas in Veritate

There is a lot of insane commentary about the Pope's latest encyclical. Fr. Thomas Reese, SJ is gleefully proclaiming that Pope Benedict is politically to the left of every American politician. May I suggest you ignore such antics. They sound like toddlers jumping up and down saying "Daddy loves me best!" Caritas in Veritate is not a political document. It is not about scoring political points. It is about proclaiming truth. The Truth.

What strikes me most about Caritas in Veritate is that it is implicitly humbling. No matter how enlightened we think we have become, if we have not fallen to our knees and first pleaded with God for his assistance and responded to HIS WILL, we will not adequately address global social and economic issues. It does not matter if we are proposing a highly government controlled socialistic intervention or a market driven libertarian approach. We need God.

The best commentary without political shrieking I have found is over at the Mirror of Justi…

Caritas in Veritates

Pope Benedict XVI released the third encyclical of his papacy today. I am still studying it. It is a marvelous work that speaks to our contemporary state with timeless wisdom. My first impressions are here.

"Moral evaluation and scientific research must go hand in hand"

I wrote about the Obama administrations's abandonment of the President Council on Bioethics because it was to reflective and not practical enough. Perhaps paragraph 31 of the Pope's latest encyclical, Caritas in Veritate, will cause him to reconsider:

This means that moral evaluation and scientific research must go hand in hand, and that charity must animate them in a harmonious interdisciplinary whole, marked by unity and distinction. The Church's social doctrine, which has “an important interdisciplinary dimension”[77], can exercise, in this perspective, a function of extraordinary effectiveness. It allows faith, theology, metaphysics and science to come together in a collaborative effort in the service of humanity. It is here above all that the Church's social doctrine displays its dimension of wisdom. Paul VI had seen clearly that among the causes of underdevelopment there is a lack of wisdom and reflection, a lack of thinking capable of formulating a guiding synth…

My post for today

I will be focused on having all four children home, as well as my oldest son's fiancee visiting for the weekend. She also brought her dachshund "Chewy" for the visit. Athena, our labradinger, is going wild!

In any case, I have managed to pull together a compilation of the reports on President Obama's meeting with the Catholic press. You can read it here.

Texas Tales

I returned Monday evening after eight days in Texas. The 85º temperatures in Virginia seem very cool and comfortable after eight straight days of 100º+ temperatures in Houston and San Antonio.

Most of the details for the rehearsal dinner are under control. We will be gathering at the Astin Mansion in Bryan, Texas. Dinner will be a Mexican buffet. I am trying to decide what to serve as dessert. I am thinking pecan pie with Bluebell Homemade Vanilla ice cream on top. They also suggested a fruit tart or cheesecake. I’ve got some time to work out those details.

I spent the weekend in San Antonio attending the Catholic New Media Celebration sponsored by SQPN. It was both inspirational and instructional. I enjoyed meeting many bloggers. Most especially, it was fun to chat with Danielle Bean, Julie Davis, and Heidi Hess Saxton. Make sure you are checking out their blogs on a regular basis.

If you are not familiar with SQPN, you are missing out on some great Catholic programming. Fr. Roderick’s