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Showing posts from January, 2012

What's Missing

This image showed up on my Facebook news feed because a friend had left a comment on the site that posted it. There is really nothing objectionable in it so why does it feel like something is missing?

After pondering this for a bit I realized that what is missing is Christ. This is all about us--what we will do--what we will accomplish. Nowhere does it say we are dependent on God. Nowhere does it say He is in charge. Jesus is spoken of as an historical figure who said some good things, but nowhere does it mention our fallen nature and His great mercy and love. Where is Jesus in our current world? Nowhere does this mention the Cross.

My question is, other than the mention of a Bible verse, what makes this statement any different than the local Rotary club, or the Kiwanis or the Junior League or any other secular service organization? As Christians we are more than just a social service organization. Pope Benedict XVI addressed this difference in Deus Caritas Est:

The increase in diver…

Now that we are here...

RAnn made an important point in a comment on my previous post: We would not be in this mess with the HHS mandate if Catholics were by and large following Church teaching and not using contraception. It is similar to the point made my Emily Stimpson here and here, reinforced by Pia de Solenni here, addressed by Thomas Peters here, and finally Tom Crowe offers a summary of all the aspects of these viewpoints here.

I highly recommend you take the time to read all the links above, but in case you are hurried here is the executive summary:

It is all well and good that our bishops are speaking out forcefully against the HHS mandate. It is a true threat to religious liberty. At the same time, there is some real frustration because we are in this mess because our shepherds have not done a very good job for at least forty years and probably longer in  proclaiming the Gospel of life. Catholics know the Church does not approve of contraception, but how many understand the "why" of this…

A Call to Battle!

As they say in the fighter pilot world: Fight's on!

On January 19, 2012, Pope Benedict XVI addressed a group of American bishops in Rome for their ad limina visits and gave them their marching orders. He let them know, in no uncertain terms, that America cannot rest on her laurels of religious freedom. The Church and all she represents are under assault in the United States:
[I]t is imperative that the entire Catholic community in the United States come to realize the grave threats to the Church’s public moral witness presented by a radical secularism which finds increasing expression in the political and cultural spheres. The seriousness of these threats needs to be clearly appreciated at every level of ecclesial life. Of particular concern are certain attempts being made to limit that most cherished of American freedoms, the freedom of religion. Many of you have pointed out that concerted efforts have been made to deny the right of conscientious objection on the part …

Who said anything about ignorance?

As I mentioned, my latest piece over at HLI America takes on the "experts" who think they know better than I do what my children need to know about sex and when they need to know it. As expected, the first commenter is outraged because she assumes I want to keep my children ignorant and in the dark about sexuality. I never said that. I said I will teach my children. Why does she assume that parents are incapable of providing essential information about sex to their children?  If anyone wants to wander over there and offer some support in the com box, I would appreciate it!

The "experts" want to tell your child about sex

If you, like most parents, are anxious about how to impart a healthy and moral view of sexuality to your children, a coalition of  ”experts” want to come to your rescue. They have decided what your children need to know about sex and when they need to know it.
The Journal of School Health published the special report, National Sexuality Education Standards: Core Content and Skills, K–12. The purpose of these standards is to make a radical agenda normative for all public schools in the United States.
According to the “experts,” what should your child know? By the end of the second grade, your child needs to, “Identify different kinds of family structures,” which means that they not only want your child to know about traditional two-parent families, single-parent families, blended divorced families and gay-parent families, but they want them to see each of these as equally acceptable and good. In addition, by the end of the second grade your child should be able to, “Provide ex…

Robert McCartney gets all selectively sanctimonious

What did I tell you? As soon as people criticized the actions of Page Melton (now Page Ivie), the powers that be at the Washington Post came down on them, characterizing them as judgmental cowards. Columnist Robert McCartney goes on to say that those who object to a woman divorcing her disabled husband so she can marry another man and get on with her life are just out of touch with the American mainstream:
These writers have every right to voice their disapproval of Ivie’s actions on the grounds that their view of the marriage covenant is different from hers – and, given the national divorce rate, different from that of most Americans.   I agree with Mr. McCartney that hateful comments offer nothing to the discussion. No matter how much we disagree, we should always try to respond with charity. However, Robert McCartney has never uttered a peep over the hateful comments directed towards Sarah Palin, the Tea Party, clergy, Catholics in general, or any one else with whom he has ideolo…

All parents are homeschoolers!

I strayed from a strictly bioethics topic to write on parenting over at HLI America.

We are all homeschoolers. Some of us may seek more outside help to cover English literature, calculus or social studies, but the crucial education of our children in truth and virtue begins at home, and begins with parents. This means it is our responsibility to form our children in the principles of a culture of life.
That is a very high sounding ideal, but what are the practical nuts and bolts components of raising children of faith and virtue? First and foremost, parents can show their commitment to the dignity of every child when they are open to the gift of life and welcome each new family member as a manifestation of God’s love. Supporting a culture of life must be a family activity and can be accomplished through both corporal and spiritual works of mercy.Please read the whole thing here!

Marriage is for a lifetime

I have been struggling for four days to figure out how to write a post on this article without sounding harsh and judgmental. I have finally given up and will just have my say. The title of the article is: A family learns the true meaning of the vow ‘in sickness and in health’The thing is, I don’t think they learned the true meaning at all. The gist of the story is that at age 46, Robert Melton suffered a stroke and a heart attack. His brain suffered from lack of oxygen but he survived. He was conscious and conversant but had some mental disabilities. He had an incomplete memory of his family but did eventually remember his wife and daughters. He needed a very structured environment so he was placed in an assisted living facility. The family had a healthy and happy routine of visiting every Saturday, while Page also visited a few days during the week. Then Page reconnects with an old friend, Allan, who is getting divorced. They hit it off and develop a relationship. They even include …

Intercession by Blessed Fr. Seelos

When my husband was diagnosed with lymphoma in 2010 I found that Blessed Fr. Seelos was a powerful intercessor. My husband was in terrible pain that was poorly controlled with medications. Before he even began the chemotherapy the pain seemingly miraculously subsided. There is no doubt in my mind that his relief was Divine intervention and was helped along by the intercessory prayer of Fr. Seelos. I have continued to ask for his prayers ever since and include him in my Litany of Saints after a Rosary. So I am very happy to see Blessed Fr. Seelos is credited with the recovery of a priest who suffered a fractured neck and was paralyzed.

An American priest who was paralysed from the chest down has started to walk again after praying to a 19th-century Blessed.
When Redemptorist Fr John Murray struck his head against a railing after tripping along a walkway 15 months ago, the consequences were devastating.
The Baltimore parish priest suffered a broken neck that left him immediately para…

Conscience Rights Affect Quality of Health Care

Did you know that the quality of care provided by doctors and nurses can be negatively impacted when they are forced to violate their moral or professional principles? Over at HLI America I cover a new study that suggests patients will suffer if conscience rights are not respected.

Are there significant consequences when doctors and nurses provide health care that violates their moral or professional principles? The APPROPRICUS study, results of which were reported in the December 28 issueoftheJournaloftheAmericanMedicalAssociation (JAMA), suggests that the inability of physicians to practice medicine in accord with their personal ethical standards leaves them professionally dissatisfied and clinically less effective. Specifically, the authors conclude:Among a group of European and Israeli ICU clinicians, perceptions of inappropriate care were frequently reported and were inversely associated with factors indicating good teamwork.Continue reading here