Pull up a chair in my domestic church and let's chat!

I have worn many labels (Not in any particular order): Catholic, Wife, Mom,Gramma, Doctor, Major, Soccer Mom, Military Wife, Professor, Fellow.

All of these filter my views of the world. I hope that like St. Monica, I can through prayer, words and example, lead my children and others to Faith.
"The important thing is that we do not let a single day go by in vain without putting it to good use for eternity"--Blessed Franz J├Ągerst├Ątter

Thursday, October 31, 2013

All is not lost for women and work

After reading Elizabeth Corey's article in the October issue First Things I felt compelled to once again wade into the work-vs-home debates. You can read the full discussion over at the Truth & Charity Forum. The premise for my position can be summarized by this excerpt:

 I would not characterize domestic and professional lives as equal callings. Instead, I would say we are each called to live out a vocation. Some will be priests. Some will be consecrated religious. Some will be married. Some will be single. Within these vocations, we also live out occupations. For example, a priest may also be a physician. A sister may also be a teacher. A husband and father or wife and mother may also work as a doctor, lawyer, teacher, or any number of other jobs. There is no doubt that the way we conduct our occupations will impact our vocations. Our challenge is to keep our occupations in perspective so that they never overshadow our vocations.
Do head over to Truth & Charity and read the whole article. I would love to know what you think.

Tuesday, October 29, 2013

Possible solution to the Boy Scouts of America conundrum for Catholics

I have no information to indicate that the National Catholic Committing on Scouting is looking for a solution similar to what has been offered the Lutherans, but I think they should be. Read all about it at the Truth & Charity Forum!

Thursday, October 17, 2013

Rights vs Privileges

It is good news that within 24 hours of filing a law suit against the federal government for prohibiting Catholic practices including Mass, baptisms, religious education and counseling during the government shut down, the administration reversed course and notified the Thomas More Law Center that their clients would once again be free to practice Catholicism at the Kings Bay Naval facility.

It would have been instructive, however, to hear government lawyers argue their case. Only Catholics were barred from all activities--even lay run activities such as religious education. Other denominations were allowed to function unimpeded. Exactly how were they going to justify their judgment that Catholic religious practices were not essential and did not contribute to the morale and welfare of military personnel and their families?

Before we break out the champagne to celebrate this legal victory, it is time to take a sober look at the implications of this case. The fact that the freedom to exercise our religion was ever called in to question speaks volumes about the tenuous position of our religious liberty within the United States and within the military in particular. This freedom that is a right guaranteed by our Constitution is being reduced to a privilege that is subject to the whims of those with power. We must not be content that everything turned out ok in the end. We owe the current administration no gratitude for their concessions. We need to make clear to all elected officials of both parties that we will not stand for this type of infringement upon our religious liberty in the future.

Friday, October 04, 2013

The priorities of Senator Tim Kaine, my senator from Virginia

I am very disturbed because the Obama administration sees fit to stop Catholic Mass, baptisms, etc if they are performed by contract Catholic priests in the military, Even though these priests are willing to perform these functions without pay, the federal government has threatened them with arrest if they offer the sacraments. Active duty military priests can still offer the sacraments, so it is not a case of the worship facilities being closed by the shutdown.

I wrote to my senator, Tim Kaine about this. This is my letter:

The government shut down is supposed to happen because we cannot pay bills. It is not supposed to be political posturing to selectively shut down that which will inflict the most pain on the American people. This is an opportunity to look at every expenditure and evaluate if we need it or not. Shutting down parks that generate revenue and barricading monuments that are normally open without supervision is insane.

Now the Obama administration is forbidding contract priests to say Mass. As a Catholic, you should know that Catholic priests do not charge to offer the sacraments and would be willing to say Mass without pay. In the linked article, you can see that the Archdiocese of the Military reports that a couple was not allowed to use a contract priest for their wedding even though this priest had done all of their marriage preparation. My daughter just got married on August 10 and it would have been devastating if the priest who had bonded with her and her new husband had been prevented from saying the wedding Mass. How dare President Obama and the Democrats insert themselves into the sacramental lives of Catholics!

Fund the non-controversial aspects of the government. Do your job. Use reasoned arguments instead of political hyperbole to work through the gridlock. Failure to do so shows that your interest is in your own power and not in doing what is good for the country.

Dr. Hunnell

I received a response from Senator Kaine:

Thank you for contacting me.
Unfortunately, a lapse in funding has required the nonessential operations of the federal government to temporarily close. I will be unable to respond to your message until the situation is resolved.
As we continue to discuss and debate the many significant challenges facing our Commonwealth and country, I do appreciate you taking time to contact me. Hearing from Virginians helps me better understand my constituents and the issues facing them.
I encourage you to visit my website at for regular updates about my activities, as well as my positions on issues that are important to Virginia and our nation.
Thank you again for contacting me.
Note that the website that collects input from constituents is functionally shut down because it is considered "non-essential" by Senator Kaine. However, I am directed to the website that keeps his name and picture front and center and features his political grandstanding. Senator Kaine thinks it is essential to keep that up and running during the shut down.  Let's me know exactly where I stand.