Apr 30, 2009

NIH - provides free treatment and medicines for certain cases

My daughter has this severe skin irritation that eludes conventional treatments.  Her doctor suggested that we take her to NIH to be a subject of their study.  We applied and got accepted in the program.  Now, NIH provides free treatment and medicines in exchange for the data that they get from my daughter's case.  Confidentiality is assured and we can back out anytime.

Apr 27, 2009

Origins of the Fighting Irish

I've always wondered about the "Fighting Irish". What's with the fighting? For a Catholic people, it seems contradictory. Folks at http://catholic-dads.blogspot.com/ had this to say.

Thomas More says, "I think it has more to do with the Irish Brigades that fought on the side of the Union during the Civil War."

RobK states,   "The most generally accepted explanation is that the press coined the nickname as a characterization of Notre Dame athletic teams, their never-say-die fighting spirit and the Irish qualities of grit, determination and tenacity. The term likely began as an abusive expression tauntingly directed toward the athletes from the small, private, Catholic institution. Notre Dame alumnus Francis Wallace popularized it in his New York Daily News columns in the 1920s."

But my favorite explanation is from the late Archibishop Fulton Sheen.   It's been said that during the war between Lucifer's legions and God's faithful angels, a third group of angels stayed on the sidelines - taking neither side. At the end, these neutral angels were also banished from heaven until judgment day. Though they were not condemned in hell, they were sent to Ireland. Ever since, they have inspired the people there to fight the good fight.

Apr 26, 2009

Is abortion the most important issue? [annotated commentary]

I found this article at Vox-nova http://vox-nova.com/2009/04/22/is-abortion-the-most-important-issue/

Is abortion the most important issue?

[The answer below is no. It is not torture either. See below for the surprise ending.]

Though abortion is objectively the most widespread and murderous social evil in America (and those who fight against it - whether at abortion clinics or in politics - are to be honored), this does not make all other issues somehow less important. Even John Paul the Great, a man on a crusade against death, proclaimed that “the one issue which most challenges our human and Christian consciences is the poverty of countless millions of men and women.”
[so is it the one or just one of many?]

This is
JPII saying this, not Vox Nova, not Nate Wildermuth, but the man, our man, John Paul. (Might I add that it’s a great name for a baby?) [Only for a son.]

It’s time we saw all these “issues” as one great problem: sin.
[It is both then because they’re interwoven. ] Abortion and poverty and violence are all interwoven into one terrible system of sin. [Getting to the root – radical approach]
This sin can only be confronted through the Gospel of Jesus Christ, not through clever programs, not through vicious blogs
[most likely not], not through dense books [alone], not through televised homilies [by themselves],

[ Recall when a professor once remarked about St. John Vianney, "This fellow is a complete ass. What can he possibly accomplish?" Father Vianney replied, "If Samson armed only with the jawbone of an ass, could kill one thousand Philistines, imagine what God can do with the complete ass!"]

but through a personal encounter with the King and the Kingdom.
[whose personal encounter - the pro-lifer, the pro-abortionist or both? Both, only Jesus can move the pro-abortion folks. For the pro-lifers to bring Jesus, they must first have Jesus – can’t give what you don’t have. Nemo dat quod non habet.]

But what does that really mean?
[Good question. It means we’re involved in a spiritual combat as Arch. Chaput mentioned before. What does it not mean? It does not mean that we have to stop other efforts e.g. legislation, counseling, rescue and education to stop abortion.]

It means, perhaps, finding a holy hour instead of an
internet hour. [perhaps both]

Apr 25, 2009

How far along are you? See your child not a blob.

She is God's creature and your child.  She is a living person, not a blob.
She was given life.  Do not take it away from her.

Apr 24, 2009

Safe, Legal & Rare (GRAPHIC)

The Secretary of State stated that the administration intends to keep abortion
safe, legal and rare.  Didn't she mean well done?

Safe and Legal? (GRAPHIC)

The Secretary of State stated that the administration intends to keep abortion 
safe and legal.  

Apr 22, 2009

Why 42 bishops cannot order Fr. Jenkins to rescind the invitation

"Not my will but your will be done."

Because Fr. Jenkins is a "religious" and not a diocesan priest, he is not subject to the local bishop. He belongs to the Congregation of the Holy Cross that answers only to the bishop of Rome.

However, the members of this order have religious superiors who can order them by invoking their vow of obedience. Fr. David Tyson, Fr. Jenkins' superior, decided to not go there for whatever reason. In an interview, Fr. Tyson pointed out that Fr. Jenkins is "fulfilling his responsibilities" in his current assignment and that it is the board of trustees that controls Notre Dame governance and policy. As provincial superior, his role is limited to the spiritual welfare of his subjects.

With all due respect, this sounds like passing the buck. I think that Fr. Jenkins as president is a decision-maker and not a rubber stamp. So, he can overrule whatever the board decides. They can fire him, but he'll go down fighting for the Lord and his children.

Fr. Jenkin's is not an independent layman. He is a member of a religious order that is there to serve the Church in America and not vice-versa. Their exempt status was not meant to justify their defiance but rather to facilitate their service to the local Church. If their ultimate superior, the bishop of Rome were to get into the act, guess what his direction will be.

Even if we assume that theoretically Fr. Jenkin's has the right to award the honorary degree in law to a proponent of abortion laws, are there other factors that come in the big picture that makes his right, wrong? In other words, a moral act is not evaluated in a vacuum but is considered along with the circumstances and consequences. Forty-two bishops have pointed out his error and the scandal that it causes. Is it not unconscionable for a religious to ignore their pastoral concerns?

Another criterion in evaluating the morality of an act is the intention. According to Fr. Jenkins, he intends to engage Obama in a dialogue to somehow open his views about the sanctity of life. If that is his intent, can he not accomplish it without scandalizing thousands of his brothers and sisters in the Lord? The Lord warned about scandalizing the weak and how it is better to drown than to mislead a single one of them, even the most insignificant..

There's also the matter of the virtue of obedience. No one really orders anyone under the vow of obedience anymore. Instead, religious strive to live the virtue of obedience following the example of the incarnate Son of God who was obedient from birth in a manger until death on a cross. Then there's Notre Dame herself who obeyed even if she did not understand and at the risk of being stoned for perceived adultery. Without any thought for her well being, she made the fiat that saved the world, "Be it done to me according to thy word."

So, legally the local bishops cannot compel Fr. Jenkins to do anything. However, if Fr. Jenkins had the spirit of obedience, then they would not have to.
"Be it done unto me according to thy word"

Why you should continue blogging.

  As I surveyed today's posts about Jenkins and Sebellius I wondered,  "Why even bother?".  Here's what kept me going.
I can help others.  Last night, I published Bishop Blair's response to an accusation.  I was able to provide 5 platforms for his defense.
I can influence others.  My opinion gets amplified when people know that it is out there for everyone to see and that gives me more power to make things happen.  I've been asking my bishops to deny communion to pro-abort pols.  It hasn't worked the way I wanted.  But Bishop Loverde made that dramatic gesture of delivering the post cards to Congress last month and Bishop Wuerl did say that Sebellius will comply with the prohibition to not receive Holy Communion.  (How?  Maybe he told her privately.)
I can warn others and they can benefit from my mistakes.  A wise man learns from his mistakes;  a wiser man learns from others'.  I've stepped on a lot of land mines and I can point out where they are.
I can refute error and correct falsehoods.  There are websites that misrepresent the teachings of the Church.  I can weigh in with the truth and keep the readers from being misinformed and consequently misled.  
I can edify and encourage others by pointing out the good that I see.  There's a lot out there.  That way, people will know what to do and how to do it.  And it is better to light a candle that to curse the darkness. (Christophers' motto)
I can share my thoughts, feelings, insights, aspirations, hopes, fears, joys with others and know that I have company.  This encourages me in following Jesus.
I am forced to deepen my faith by reading, study, analysis or synthesis because,  I have to mull over the things that I write.  The Lord pointed out that, "The mouth speaks of what the heart contains."   So, I make St. Thomas Aquinas' motto my own i.e. "Contemplari et contemplate aliis tradere." To meditate and to transmit to other whats was contemplated.  And also Sir Francis Bacon when he observes,  "Reading makes a full man, conference a ready man, and writing an exact man."
God bless & love you all.

Apr 21, 2009

A personal message from Bishop Blair

Written by MOST REVEREND LEONARD P. BLAIR, Bishop of Toledo, Bishop of Toledo

On April 18, the Toledo Blade ran a story about the request that the Holy See has made of me to conduct a doctrinal assessment of the Leadership Conference of Women Religious in the United States. 

The Blade took the occasion to solicit comments about me from persons totally unrelated to the news in question, including a comment from SNAP’s national outreach director in St. Louis, whom I have never met or heard of. She was quoted as saying that I am “a bishop with a terrible track record on child sex abuse and cover-up.”

Since becoming your Bishop in 2003 I have had to deal with many grave matters, including cases of clergy sexual abuse of minors. I want to assure you that I have never “covered up” anything. Each and every allegation, past and present, has been taken with the utmost seriousness and handled according to the requirements of civil and church law. Above and beyond the law, our diocese has reached out to victims, and the outcome of clergy cases has been made public.

Every person has a right to his or her good name.  As your Bishop I want you to know that I reject as false the characterization that appeared in the Blade. At the same time I take to heart what our Lord said, that we are to love our enemies, do good to those who hate us, and pray for those who persecute us.

Apr 20, 2009

Links to statements of 46 bishops protesting honorary award to Obama in ND

Click on link to read the bishop's statements against Notre Dame’s awarding of an honorary degree in Law to Obama.
  1. Bishop John D’Arcy, Fort Wayne-South Bend
  2. Cardinal Francis George, Chicago
  3. Cardinal Daniel DiNardo, Galveston-Houston
  4. Archbishop Timothy Dolan, Milwaukee (--> NYC)
  5. Archbishop John Nienstedt, St. Paul-Minneapolis
  6. Archbishop Eusebius Beltran, Oklahoma City
  7. Bishop Edward Slattery, Tulsa
  8. Archbishop John Myers, Newark
  9. Archbishop Alfred Hughs, New Orleans
  10. Bishop Joseph Martino, Scranton
  11. and Auxiliary Bishop John Dougherty, Scranton
  12. Bishop Thomas Doran, Rockford, Ill.
  13. Bishop Thomas Olmsted, Phoenix
  14. Bishop Gregory Aymond, Austin
  15. Bishop Robert Lynch, St. Petersburg
  16. Bishop R. Walker Nickless, Sioux City
  17. Bishop Kevin Rhoades, Harrisburg, Pa.
  18. Bishop William E. Lori, Bridgeport, CT
  19. Bishop Robert Morlino, Madison WI
  20. Bishop George Murry, S.J., Youngstown, OH
  21. Bishop William Higi, Lafayette, IN
  22. Bishop Anthony Taylor of Little Rock, AR
  23. Archbishop Jose Gomez, San Antonio, TX
  24. and Auxiliary Bishop Oscar Cantu
  25. Bishiop Jerome Listecki, La Crosse, WI
  26. Archbishop Edwin O'Brien, Baltimore MD
  27. Bishop Alex Sample, Marquette MI
  28. Archbishop Daniel Buechlein, Indianapolis
  29. Bishop Robert Baker, Birmingham AL
  30. Bishop Samuel Aquila, Fargo ND
  31. Bishop Gerald Barbarito, Palm Beach FL
  32. Bishop Fabian Brukeswitz, Lincoln NE
  33. Bishop Richard Stika, Knoxville TN
  34. Bishop Robert Finn, Kansas City
  35. Bishop Joseph Latino, Jackson MS
  36. Bishop Leonard Blair, Toledo OH
  37. Bishop Gerald Gettelfinger, Evansville IN
  38. Bishop George Lucas, Springfield IL
  39. Archbishop Daniel Pilarczyk, Cincinnati OH
  40. Bishop Thomas Wenski, Orlando FL
  41. Bishop Robert Vasa, Baker OR
  42. Bishop Paul Coakley, Salina KS
  43. Bishop John Le Voir, New Ulm MN
  44. Bishop Victor Galeone, St. Augustine FL
  45. Bishop David Zubik, Pittsburgh PA
  46. Bishop Paul Loverde, Arlington VA
H/T to American Papist

Remembering my family tonight.

Tonight, I remember my grandpas,  granduncle and other family killed during WWII.  My granduncle was with the resistance and died fighting in the mountains.  One grandpa was with the merchant marines helping the war effort by transporting materials.  The other was a civilian but got hit by sharpnel.  Then I have brothers and sisters, nephews and nieces who were rounded up and forced into hard labor in concentration camps.  When they were too sick or too weak to haul gravel, they were herded into gas chambers and died by asphyxiation.  I was told to forgive and forget.  I leave the forgiveness part to the Lord.  But I can not forget their senseless deaths. Those who forget the lessons of history are bound to repeat it's mistakes.  Join me in remembering them so that,  man's inhumanity to man may never be repeated and simply remain as a ghastly remainder of the evils that we are capable of.  Here's a link about my family:

Here's another picture of my other family members who continue to be murdered in the states under the administration of Obama and the political leadership of the Democrats.

Apr 15, 2009

Obama cannot silence the young prophets

Just as Henry VIII sought St. Thomas Moore's approval for his divorce, Obama continues to court good Catholics to bless his pro-abortion efforts. He surrounds himself with Catholics like Biden, Sebellius & Pelosi. He tries to ignore our pro-life concerns as a 90's cultural ideology. He depreciates our cause as a lesser evil in the context of a bigger problems e.g. war, poverty, disease and ignorance. He ridicules us as irrational and divisive extremists. He rationalizes his stance as simply tolerating abortion. Then he negotiates by saying he's for reducing abortion and using only throw away embryos.
But why target the Catholics? Is it because we have the power to keep him from being re-elected? If those 54% did not vote from him, he won't win. So, there's a big chance of "buyers' remorse" as people realize that Obama cannot walk the walk.

Is it because we can be violent? Afterall, we're already listed as possible terrorists in a communique with law enforcement agencies. But that's not true because, liberation theology has long died. So, Catholics won't start bombing federal buildings anytime soon.
Is it because we can't be bought? The good ones can't be bought just like St. Thomas. Others have sold out the unborn babies with the justice of Pontius Pilate. They chose a political career even at the cost of excommunication. Why people would pay with unending torment in hell for a stint of power is beyond me. But there are even clerics with the spirituality of Judas Iscariot who encouraged others to vote for Obama and now continue to support him. For Obama, their support provides little solace just because they're traitors. Their word and support is worthless.
On the contrary, good Catholics speak the truth whether or not it is convenient. This would make any person re-appraise what is truth if there is a smidgen of honesty left in him. Not only are good Catholics faithful to the truth, they have the courage of their convictions. They wake up anyone from his self-deceptions. In the show down between the lackies of Planned Parenthood and Catholics, there is no doubt the Catholics will prevail because, they are more committed. Good Catholics are witnesses to the truth of the alienable right to life bestowed by God to the unborn; others are moved by bling that runs out.

That is why Obama wants the approval and support of good Catholics. If we absolve him of his sins then he thinks his guilt will stop and he can start to sleep again. But the only way for that to happen is for him to respect life.

Apr 11, 2009

Annual Easter Miracle of the Holy Fire

Here is a YouTube link: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=l1I6wlobutc 
and the description is as follows: 

This is footage of the miraculous appearance of the Holy Fire, Saturday April 26, 2008, in Jerusalem at the Orthodox Church of the Holy Sepulchre.

The miraculous appearance of the Holy Fire occurs every year on Holy Saturday in the Church of the Holy Sepulchre in the Old City of Jerusalem. Holy Saturday is the day before Orthodox Pascha, the celebration of the Resurrection of Jesus Christ.

The Holy Fire appears when the Patriarch of Jerusalem enters a small marble structure built over Christ’s actual, historic tomb. He enters inside, closes the door, and two large candles are miraculously lit as he is uttering prayers. When he exits the tomb he uses his lit candles to light the candles of pilgrims, who in turn light other pilgrims’ candles.

The Holy Fire doesn’t burn, as one can witness when the pious pilgrim in the video (27 second mark) moves his flame back and forth over his face and neck. The Holy Fire is later transported on chartered flights to Athens, Russia, Bulgaria and other Orthodox countries.

For more info:  http://www.holyfire.org/eng/

Choosing between Notre Dame or Femme Fatale

Fr. Jenkins from Notre Dame University has invited a pro-abortion government official to give the commencement address and receive an honorary degree. That has caused quite a stir in the Catholic community that 30 bishops have publicly requested that he rescind the invitation. Despite that, Fr. Jenkins remains adamant. 

And there lies the tragedy because it shows the disconnect between faith and life. A tree is known by its fruit. You don't get hemlock from an apple tree.  Or agere sequitur esse  - activity proceeds from essence or being.

 There lies the root of the problem - an identity crises. Are they a university for Catholics or a Catholic university?  

 In the past, universities were only for Protestants;  so, colleges were put up for Catholics.  So, they could be a generic college with that history and are now almost Catholic in name only as written up in 'The Idea of a Catholic University' ( Land'o'Lakes Conference, 1967 )

Cf.  http://www.projectsycamore.com/pages/landolakes1.php

 The only Catholic trait there is from the statement " Distinctively, then, the Catholic university must be an institution, a community of learners or a community of scholars, in which Catholicism is perceptibly present and effectively operative."

 Or the university can be the educational arm of the Church preparing leaders to permeate the world with the spirit of God as defined the apostolic constitution on Catholic Universities (Rome, 1990) by the late Pope John Paul II.  http://www.vatican.va/holy_father/john_paul_ii/apost_constitutions/documents/hf_jp-ii_apc_15081990_ex-corde-ecclesiae_en.html

 The essential characteristics quoted below leaves no doubt on the identity and vision of a Catholic university.

13. Since the objective of a Catholic University is to assure in an institutional manner a Christian presence in the university world confronting the great problems of society and culture(16), every Catholic University, as Catholic, must have the following essential characteristics:

"1. a Christian inspiration not only of individuals but of the university community as such;

2. a continuing reflection in the light of the Catholic faith upon the growing treasury of human knowledge, to which it seeks to contribute by its own research;

3. fidelity to the Christian message as it comes to us through the Church;

4. an institutional commitment to the service of the people of God and of the human family in their pilgrimage to the transcendent goal which gives meaning to life"(17).

There seems to be a little of both visions as shown by some of the students, teachers, staff and alumni who demonstrated last week against the invitation.  So there’s hope in reforming it’s vision and mission in the long-term and doing some damage control this May. 

We plan to join the students there as they stand for all these values as personified  by Our Lady – Notre Dame.

Apr 7, 2009

2.25 million red envelopes of protest against Obama's assault on the unborn.

The White House mail office has confirmed the receipt of around 2.25 million red envelopes sent by pro-lifers to show opposition to the administration's promotion of abortion. Cf. http://www.worldnetdaily.com/index.php?fa=PAGE.view&pageId=94142
These did not come from a few corporations and their PAC contributions. Rather it came from working mothers, retired seniors, high school students and from every demographic across this diverse nation expressing the anguish and rage of it's soul as they oppose the cruel, mindless, vicious and rabid violence on the unborn children. Archbishop Chaput reported that a Gallup poll estimated more than 50% of the American population now oppose abortion.
If so many are standing for the sanctity of the life that the Church upholds, one may wonder why Obama won in the first place. One possible cause is the confusion coming from the bishops' misdirection about considering all the issues even if one candidate blatantly and unapologetically presented his platform as diametrically opposed to the Church's teachings. While hindsight is 20-20, the Church is now stuck with the purveyor of the culture of death in the highest office of the land.
But as long as America remains to be the land of the people, for the people and by the people, then decency will prevail because people are intrinsically good being made in the image and likeness of God. And the forces of evil, the legions of the devil who promote promiscuity, fornication, infidelity and ultimately murder through contraception and abortion will have the fight of their lives as people make a stand for God and His children.

Obama admin in shame as Vatican rejects godless ambassadors for 3rd time

It is the third time that the Vatican has rejected the US candidate to serve as ambassador there according to the Washington Times. Cf. http://washingtontimes.com/news/2009/apr/07/embassy-row-7410554/ The Pope has done this because all the candidates were pro-abortion.
It seems that the US administration is trying to force in these unsavory characters to make a point that the Vatican will condone the reality of abortion i.e. that there is some tolerance allowable in this matter. Little did they know that the Church is guided by God's Holy Spirit and will not be suckered into supporting godless policies and compromises with evil.
Then again, there is also a possibility that Washington is misled by the Catholic pols who present an obscene interpretation of the Church's position as allowing some form of lesser-evil. This may have been further corroborated by the refusal of Archbishops Wuerl and Bishop Loverde to enforce the Church law that will exclude pro-abortion pols from Holy Communion.
Regardless, what matters is the direction from the top and there is no confusion there, no room for doubt as the Holy See demonstrates the unity and integrity of belief and life not only at a personal level but also at the state level.

On Conscience Protection: it's not over.

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