Friday, July 31, 2009

Can You Answer A YES or NO Question?

It appears President Obama and Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi can't. Seriously, if this question wasn't so very important, these answers would be hilarious. Can anyone watch these videos and find either Obama or Pelosi trustworthy? I can't.

President Obama




and now.... Nancy Pelosi (I'm searching for audio or video clip because it says so much more than just the words. For now you can read her reply. Embarrassing. And she calls herself a Catholic!)

On the July 26 edition of CNN’s State of the Union host John King asked Pelosi: “If this bill passes and there’s a public option, should that public option cover abortions?”

Pelosi said: “That’s not--that’s not the issue. The issue is people go out there to--we’ll be working on that issue. But that’s not the issue. …” (My interjection: It is the issue because it is the question being asked!!! Answer the question! It's easy. Yes or No!)

King then asked the Speaker about pro-life Rep. Bart Stupak (D-Mich.), who has said he wants language similar to the Hyde Amendment, to restrict taxpayer-funding of abortion, in the health care reform bill.

Pelosi said: “Well, I don’t know that that – that Bart’s language is exactly that. But those – we have people who are working together to help promote health insurance for all Americans, that people will be treated the same in a public option as they are in a private option and that this issue should not be an issue, being respectful of Bart Stupak’s concerns and respectful of full reproductive health care for America’s women.”

Question asked on or around minute 4:30 of the video below.

Thursday, July 30, 2009

Tim Tebow's Christian Faith Once Again Becomes News Story

It is a little hard to hear the question on this video, but to paraphrase the aol reporter's question: I'm personally interested, and I think a lot of people are interested in knowing; are you saving yourself for marriage? Tim Tebow shocked the crowd of reporters at SEC Media Days with his clear and concise answer: Yes I am!
First of all, how creepy and weird is it that this reporter (a male) asks this question. 'I'm personally interested'. Why in the world would that interest him? I can understand why college-aged women might be curious and they should be happy to hear Tim's answer. SEC Media Days is all about getting to know the football team and 99% of the questions are going to be (and should be) football releated. This isn't entertainment tonight. Tim Tebow, despite playing for the Florida Gators (the archrival of Georgia), is a man I highly respect. He is using his success on the football field to evangelize and his actions back up his words. He goes on mission trips, he has good manners, he does just about everything right in the public eye. That is why I bring this story up and why it annoys me so much.
Tim Tebow is not perfect. No person is perfect. Tim will make mistakes along his journey in life. Does that make him any less of a Christian? This question was certainly an attempt by a reporter to find something wrong with Tim Tebow. There is certainly a lot of jealousy when it comes to Tim Tebow. Many people don't think it is possible to live a strongly devout Christian life this day in age. Guess what, it's possible and there are people, most likely you youself reading this blog, who live out their lives in holiness. That doesn't mean you and I will live perfect lives. We are all sinners. We may not always practice what we preach, but we recognize our sinfulness when we fall, we seek forgiveness and we try not to fall into that same sinful state again. Once again I applaud Tim Tebow for being honest and true to his Christian beliefs. He did not have to answer that personal question, but he had nothing to hide. He is proud of his faith and that is a lesson for all of us. We should not be embarrassed about our faith, but we should be proud of our faith and be willing to share it with others whenever the opportunity arises. I wish Tebow the best this upcoming college football season, just not when they play the Georgia Bulldogs... whooo, whooo, whooo, whooo whooo (those are dog barks for those of you confussed.) Have a great day everyone and God Bless!




Monday, July 27, 2009

Overpopulation is a Myth

This was forwarded to my by my Aunt Donna. I thought it was worth sharing. I have added Patrick Madrid's blog site to my side bar. Check out the video below which I found on his site.

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Pro Life Action Items

There are several action items we need to act on as pro-life advocates. Probably the greatest threat right now is the proposed health care "reform" which is destined for disaster. We MUST speak up now and voice our outrage at the proposed "reforms" that will destroy health care in this country. To sign a petition, simply click on the link below and follow the directions on the website.

Free Our Health Care Now

There is also an exciting event occuring this Thursday. A majority of the pro-life leaders from many of the leading pro-life organizations will come together in a webcast and discuss how to unite and fight the impending health care "reform" which will lead to thousands more abortions, taxpayer funded, and a loss of choice or efficiency in our health care. Please visit the website below for more details.

Stop the Abortion Mandate


Thanks for joining me in protecting our freedoms and rights and standing up for life. God bless!

Saturday, July 18, 2009

USCCB Encourages Catholics To Read Bible Daily

The United States Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB) recently released a guide encouraging Catholics to read the Bible daily. Although scripture is read in mass daily, there is a perception that Catholics don't read the Bible. I believe that it is more than just a perception however. Many Catholics don't read the Bible outside of the mass, and this is a sad reality. The Bible is Catholic so why do so few Catholics read the Bible? Part of the reason many Catholics don't read the Bible often is because they don't know how to properly read the Bible. The USCCB has noted ten points for fruitful scripture reading. The essential message is that reading the Bible should be a prayerful action, not simply an action in search of entertainment. Nor should it be considered simply a historical text or scientific textbook. The Bible must be read in proper context, using Catholic editions that include the complete list of sacred books and accurate translations, and this reading should be done in prayerful contemplation. We should pray before, during and after our scripture reading. If we engage in Bible study and any or all of these dimensions are missing, we are opening ourselves up for manipulation of the text and misrepresentations. Our scripture reading will not be as fruitful as it could be and could even become counterproductive. In order for our Bible reading and study to be fruitful, we should follow these guidelines laid out for us by the USCCB. Below is the link to the USCCB website discussion this topic. It will be helpful for me as I continue my quest to read the Bible in it's entirety.

Ten Points for Fruitful Scripture Reading

Sunday, July 12, 2009

Theology of the Body Reflections: Conclusion

After several months, I have finally finished reading Pope John Paul II's Theology of the Body (663 Pages). In this post I am going to give a brief summary using quotes from JPII himself, and encourage you all to read Theology of the Body when you get the chance. If you do not have the time to read the entire book, I highly encourage you to at least read Christoper West's commentary on the pope's masterpiece: Theology of the Body Explained and if you have teenage children I highly recommend that you have them watch the EWTN series Theology of the Body For Teens.
Pope JPII started these talks back in 1980 in large part as a commentary on Pope Paul VI's Humane Vitae. Humane Vitae was met with outrage by many who found it to be working against progress, but Pope Paul VI confirmed the truth consistently taught by the Church about the human person and human sexuality. I have not yet read Humane Vitae, but it is on my short list of things to read next. I will probably take a short brake from reading, but I plan on starting my next book soon. My dad says that he likes to read one fiction book during the summer. I think that is a good idea. It is good to read important non-fiction books, but it is also good to let your mind wonder in a fictional book occasionally. The fictional book I have in mind does still contain spiritual content however. I will unveil my next book reading very soon. I will also be reading the pope's newly released encyclical: Charity in Truth. I have started reading it and read some summaries of the encyclical and I am VERY excited about what I read. I think this encyclical is exactly what the world needs to reflect on in this present day. I think it should provide many answers to some of the toughest questions we face today.

Below are some quotes from Theology of the Body that conclude Pope JPII's reflections. He can sum it up much better than I ever could. May we never forget the wisdom JPII shed in Theology of the Body. This message of Truth is not reserved for theologians and ministers, it is a message for all of us. It is a response to the questions of the lay faithful and modern civilization. I believe that the fact that JPII spoke to a general audience in his talks on the theology of the body speaks volumes about the widespread importance of the message and to his outreach and effort to spread the Truth to all people. He knows that an ignorant lay faithful would destroy the Church family and damage the Church as a whole. May we all proclaim and share the message of Truth to all whether they are willing to listen or not. God bless you all!
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General Audience of November 28, 1984
"THE WHOLE OF THE CATECHESES that I began more than four years ago...are divided into two parts. The first part is devoted to the analysis of the words of Christ. We analyzed these words at length in the wholeness of the Gospel text. There is first of all the text in which Christ appeals 'to the beginning' in the dialogue with the Parisees about the unity and indissolubility of marriage (see Mt 19:8; Mk 10:6-9). Continuing on, there are the words Christ spoke in the Sermon on the Mount about 'concupiscence' as 'adultery committed in the heart' (see Mt 5:28). Finally, there are the words transmitted by all the Synoptics in which Christ appeals to the resurrection of the body in the 'other world' (see Mt 22:30; Mk 12:25; Lk 20:35-36). The second part of the catechesis is devoted to the analysis of the sacrament based on Ephesians (Eph 5:22-33), which goes back to the biblical 'beginning' of marriage expressed in the words of Genesis, 'a man will leave his father an his mother and unite with his wife, and the two will be one flesh' (Gen 2:24)."
"We continually went back to the reflections on the theology of the body that were linked with the key words of Christ. We went back to these reflections also by carring out, at the end of this whole cycle of cateceses, the analysis of Humane Vitae. The doctrine contained in this document of the Church's contemporaary teaching remains in organic relation both with the sacramentality of marriage and the whole biblical problematic of the theology of the body, which is centered on the 'key words' of Christ. In some sense, one can even say that all the reflections... (are) an extensive commentary on the doctrine contained precisely in Humanae Vitae. Such a commentary seems very necessary. In giving an answer to some questions of today in the sphere of conjugal and family morality, the encyclical, in fact, also raised other questions, as we know, of a bio-medical nature. However, the questions are also (and first of all) of a theological nature. The reflections carried out consist in facing the questions raised about Humane Vitae. The reaction the encyclical stirred up confirms the importance and difficulty of these questions. To take up questions raised by the encyclical means to formulate them and at the same time to seek an answer to them. The teaching contained in Familiaris Consortio, fruit of the 1980 Synod of Bishops, asks that both the formulation of the questions and the search for an appropriaate answer concentrate on the biblical and personalistic aspects." (Theology of the Body follows these guidelines)
"The rooting of the teaching proclaimed by the Church in the whole Tradition an in divine revelation itself is always open to the questions raised by people and also uses the instruments most in keeping with modern science and today's culture. The analysis of the personalistic aspects contained in this document has an existential meaning for establishing what true progress consists in, that is, the development of the human person. In contemporary civilization as a whole-especially in Western civilization- there exists, in fact, a hidden and at the same time rather explicit tendency to measure this progress with the measure of 'things,' that is, of material goods."
"The analysis of the personalistic aspects of the Church's teaching contained in Paul VI's encyclical highlights a resolute appeal to measure man's progress with the measure of the 'person,' that is, of that which is a good of man, which corresponds to his essential dignity. The analysis of the personalistic aspects leads to the conviction that the fundamental problem the encyclical presents is the viewpoint of the authentic development of the human person; such development should be measurered, as a matter of principle, by the measure of ethics and not only of 'technology."
"The most important aspect seems to be the essential aspect that, in the whole of the reflections carried out, one can specify as follows: to face the questions raised by Humanae Vitae above all in theology, to formulate these questions, and to look for an answer to them, one must find that biblical, theological sphere to which we allude when we speak about the 'redemption of the body and the sacramentality of marriage.' It is in this sphere that one finds the answers to the perennial questions of the conscience of men and women and also to the difficult questions of the conscience of our contemporary world concerning marriage and procreation.

Tuesday, July 7, 2009

Pope Highlights 'Strong Link' Between Life Issues and Social Ethics in New Encyclical

You can read the pope's new encyclical in it's entirety HERE. I highly encourage you to do so. Below is an article from Catholic News Agency talking about the new encyclical. Somehow I'm guessing that Michael Jackson will still be a bigger news story than this encyclical. Sad. I encourage you all to read and study this encyclical and let it sink in to your heart and mind. Read it with an open mind and open heart and we should all be moved by the truth of the pope's words. God bless!

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Pope highlights 'strong link' between life issues and social ethics in new encyclical

Vatican City, Jul 7, 2009 / 05:57 am (CNA).- In his first social encyclical Caritas in veritate (Love in Truth), Pope Benedict XVI made clear that social issues cannot be disconnected from the defense of life from the moment of conception to its natural end, and that the defense of the right to life cannot be compromised on when seeking common ground on other social issues.

Explaining the importance of the social magisterium of Pope Paul VI, Benedict XVI writes that the Encyclical Humanae Vitae is “highly important for delineating the fully human meaning of the development that the Church proposes.” “The Encyclical Humanae Vitae,” the Pope writes, “emphasizes both the unitive and the procreative meaning of sexuality, thereby locating at the foundation of society the married couple, man and woman, who accept one another mutually, in distinction and in complementarity: a couple, therefore, that is open to life.”

“This,” the Pope explains, “is not a question of purely individual morality: Humanae Vitae indicates the strong links between life ethics and social ethics, ushering in a new area of magisterial teaching that has gradually been articulated in a series of documents, most recently John Paul II's Encyclical Evangelium Vitae.”

“The Church forcefully maintains this link between life ethics and social ethics,” the Pope adds.

Later in the encyclical, Pope Benedict highlights that “one of the most striking aspects of development in the present day is the important question of respect for life, which cannot in any way be detached from questions concerning the development of peoples.”

Moreover, the Pope says that the life issues oblige “us to broaden our concept of poverty and underdevelopment to include questions connected with the acceptance of life, especially in cases where it is impeded in a variety of ways.”

The Pope denounces the fact that “some parts of the world still experience practices of demographic control, on the part of governments that often promote contraception and even go so far as to impose abortion.”

“In economically developed countries,” he continues, “legislation contrary to life is very widespread, and it has already shaped moral attitudes and praxis, contributing to the spread of an anti-birth mentality; frequent attempts are made to export this mentality to other States as if it were a form of cultural progress.”

Benedict XVI also denounces non-governmental organizations such as Planned Parenthood for working “actively to spread abortion, at times promoting the practice of sterilization in poor countries, in some cases not even informing the women concerned.”

“Moreover, there is reason to suspect that development aid is sometimes linked to specific health-care policies which de facto involve the imposition of strong birth control measures.”

“Further grounds for concern,” the Pope notes, “are laws permitting euthanasia as well as pressure from lobby groups, nationally and internationally, in favour of its juridical recognition.”

In his new encyclical, the Holy Father insists that “openness to life is at the centre of true development,” and warns that “when a society moves towards the denial or suppression of life, it ends up no longer finding the necessary motivation and energy to strive for man's true good.”

“If personal and social sensitivity towards the acceptance of a new life is lost, then other forms of acceptance that are valuable for society also wither away.”

Explaining the incompatibility between a mentality that accepts legal abortion as a given and a true social commitment to the common good of society, the Pope also writes that “the acceptance of life strengthens moral fibre and makes people capable of mutual help. By cultivating openness to life, wealthy peoples can better understand the needs of poor ones, they can avoid employing huge economic and intellectual resources to satisfy the selfish desires of their own citizens, and instead, they can promote virtuous action within the perspective of production that is morally sound and marked by solidarity, respecting the fundamental right to life of every people and every individual.”

Later in the encyclical, in number 44, Pope Benedict further explains that “the notion of rights and duties in development must also take account of the problems associated with population growth. This is a very important aspect of authentic development, since it concerns the inalienable values of life and the family,” he says.

“To consider population increase as the primary cause of underdevelopment is mistaken, even from an economic point of view,” he writes.

“Suffice it to consider, on the one hand, the significant reduction in infant mortality and the rise in average life expectancy found in economically developed countries, and on the other hand, the signs of crisis observable in societies that are registering an alarming decline in their birth rate.”

The Pope's encyclical also touches on sexuality as it relates to the Church's “concern for man's authentic development.” The Church, the Pope explains, “urges him to have full respect for human values in the exercise of his sexuality.

It cannot be reduced merely to pleasure or entertainment, nor can sex education be reduced to technical instruction aimed solely at protecting the interested parties from possible disease or the ‘risk’ of procreation.”

“It is irresponsible to view sexuality merely as a source of pleasure, and likewise to regulate it through strategies of mandatory birth control. In either case materialistic ideas and policies are at work, and individuals are ultimately subjected to various forms of violence. Against such policies, there is a need to defend the primary competence of the family in the area of sexuality,” the Pope also writes.

The Holy Father also recalls that “morally responsible openness to life represents a rich social and economic resource. Populous nations have been able to emerge from poverty thanks not least to the size of their population and the talents of their people. On the other hand, formerly prosperous nations are presently passing through a phase of uncertainty and in some cases decline, precisely because of their falling birth rates.”

“Furthermore,” the Pontiff laments, “smaller and at times minuscule families run the risk of impoverishing social relations, and failing to ensure effective forms of solidarity. These situations are symptomatic of scant confidence in the future and moral weariness.”

“In view of this,” Pope Benedict proposes that States “enact policies promoting the centrality and the integrity of the family founded on marriage between a man and a woman, the primary vital cell of society, and to assume responsibility for its economic and fiscal needs, while respecting its essentially relational character.”

Sunday, July 5, 2009

Help Me Vote Adam Lind into 2009 MLB All Star Game



As I've mentioned before, I'm a big fan of Adam Lind. He plays DH for the Toronto Blue Jays and he is having an amazing year. I think it would be awesome if he got voted into the all-star game. He is very deserving. Please see the widget on my sidebar or visit MLB.com and click on final vote. You can vote for Adam as many times as you want - there is no limit. I'm not asking you to give up an entire night and simply vote all night, but they have it set up easy where all your information is stored and you simply have to type in a new code to vote multiple times. If each of my readers would vote just 10 times for Adam I'd be really thankful. If you chose to vote more often, that'd be even better. Thanks and good luck Adam!

Fireworks

Julie slept through most of the fireworks. She woke up briefly, but didn't pay much attention to the fireworks. Next year should be different - if we go. The fireworks lasted about 10 minutes and it took about an hour to get out of the parking lot. Below are a couple videos from last night. Sorry about the second video being sideways - I started video taping half way through the finale - it caught me off guard. So did the music the church across the street was playing... You would think they would be playing patriotic music wouldn't you? Oh well. It was pretty fun.

video video

Friday, July 3, 2009

Julie - 11 Weeks Old on 4th of July

Julie will be 11 weeks old tomorrow on July 4th. Shelly, Julie and I are looking forward to the holiday weekend. I'll be volunteering at the soup kitchen in the morning and we will be going to a cook out with all our RCIA friends. Later tomorrow night, we might go see fireworks. I wonder if Julie will notice? She has been doing a lot better the last couple weeks. She still has some tummy problems, but it's not nearly as bad as it was the first two months. She is starting to make cooing noises and she's starting to drool. She loves to be outside and she loves to sit up and look around. She doesn't like tummy time much but she loves when I "buzz" in her ear. She did enjoy car rides, but after the 11 hour trip back from Indiana last week, I'm not sure she likes car rides anymore. She's a honey baby though and I love her so much. Here are a couple videos we took on our camera. I hope you enjoy. God bless!



video video

Thursday, July 2, 2009

St. Francis Table in Atlanta


I will be joining several members of last year's RCIA group on Saturday, July 4th, on a volunteer mission at the St. Francis Table in Atlanta. The St. Francis Table is a soup kitchen. We will be helping to feed the poor. This is the first time I will be going to St. Francis Table, so I don't know exactly what I'll be doing, but I'll give you a report on the day later this weekend or next week. The website for St. Francis Table is below and saved on the sidebar for future reference. May you all have a happy and safe 4th of July! God bless!

St. Francis Table