Saturday, May 09, 2009

Gospel for the 5th Sunday of Easter

From: John 15:1-8

The Vine and the Branches

(Jesus said to His disciples,) [1] "I am the vine, and My Father is the vinedresser. [2] Every branch of mine that bears no fruit, He takes away, and every branch that does bear fruit He prunes that it may bear more fruit. [3] You are already made clean by the word which I have spoken to you. [4] Abide in Me, and I in you. As the branch cannot bear fruit by itself, unless it abides in the vine, neither can you, unless you abide in Me. [5] I am the vine, you are the branches. He who abides in Me, and I in him, he it is that bears much fruit, for apart from Me you can do nothing. [6] If a man does not abide in Me, he is cast forth as a branch and withers; and the branches are gathered, thrown into the fire and burned. [7] If you abide in Me, and My words abide in you, ask whatever you will, and it shall be done for you. [8] By this My Father is glorified, that you bear much fruit, and so prove to be My disciples."
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Commentary:
1. This comparison of the chosen people with a vine was used in the Old Testament: Psalm 80 speaks of the uprooting of the vine in Egypt and its re-planting in another land; and in Isaiah's Song of the Vineyard (5:1-7) God complains that despite the care and love He has lavished on it, His vineyard has yielded only wild grapes. Jesus previously used this imagery in His parable about the murderous tenants (Matthew 21:33-43) to signify the Jew's rejection of the Son and the calling of the Gentiles. But here the comparison has a different, more personal meaning: Christ explains that He Himself is the true vine, because the old vine, the original chosen people, has been succeeded by the new vine, the Church, whose head is Christ (cf. 1 Corinthians 3:9). To be fruitful one must be joined to the new, true vine, Christ: it is no longer a matter of simply belonging to a community but of living the life of Christ, the life of grace, which is the nourishment which passes life on to the believer and enables him to yield fruits of eternal life. This image of the vine also helps understand the unity of the Church, Christ's mystical body, in which all the members are intimately united with the head and thereby are also united to one another (1 Corinthians 12:12-26; Romans 12:4-5; Ephesians 4:15-16).

2. Our Lord is describing two situations: that of those who, although they are still joined to the vine externally, yield no fruit; and that of those who do yield fruit but could yield still more. The Epistle of St. James carries the same message when it says that faith alone is not enough (James 2:17). Although it is true that faith is the beginning of salvation and that without faith we cannot please God, it is also true that a living faith must yield fruit in the form of deeds. "For in Christ Jesus neither circumcision nor uncircumcision is of any avail, but faith working through love" (Galatians 5:6). So, one can say that in order to produce fruit pleasing to God, it is not enough to have received Baptism and to profess the faith externally: a person has to share in Christ's life through grace and has to cooperate with Him in His work of redemption.

Jesus uses the same verb to refer to the pruning of the branches as He uses to refer to the cleanness of the disciples in the next verse: literally the translation should run: "He cleanses him who bears fruit so that he bear more fruit". In other words, He is making it quite clear that God is not content with half-hearted commitment, and therefore He purifies His own by means of contradictions and difficulties, which are a form of pruning, to produce more fruit. In this we can see an explanation of the purpose of suffering: "Have you not heard the Master Himself tell the parable of the vine and the branches? Here we can find consolation. He demands much of you for you are the branch that bears fruit. And He must prune you `ut fructum plus afferas": to make you bear more fruit'.

"Of course: that cutting, that pruning, hurts. But, afterwards, what richness in your fruits, what maturity in your actions" ([St] J. Escriva, "The Way", 701).

3. After washing Peter's feet Jesus had already said that His Apostles were clean, though not all of them (cf. John 13:10). Here, once more, He refers to that inner cleansing which results from accepting His teachings. "For Christ's word in the first place cleanses us from errors, by instructing us (cf. Titus 1:9) [...]; secondly, it purifies our hearts of earthly affections, filling them with desire for Heavenly things [...]; finally, His word purifies us with the strength of faith, for `He cleansed their hearts by faith' (Acts 15:9)" (St. Thomas Aquinas, "Commentary on St. John, in loc.").

4-5. Our Lord draws more conclusions from the image of the vine and the branches. Now He emphasizes that anyone who is separated from Him is good for nothing, like a branch separated from the vine. "You see, the branches are full of fruit, because they share in the sap that comes from the stem. Otherwise, from the tiny buds we knew just a few months back, they could not have produced the sweet ripe fruit that gladdens the eye and make the heart rejoice. Here and there on the ground we may find some dry twigs, lying half-buried in the soil. Once they too were branches of the vine; now they lie there withered and dead, a perfect image of barrenness: `apart from Me, you can do nothing'" ([St] J. Escriva, "Friends of God", 254).

The life of union with Christ is necessarily something which goes far beyond one's private life: it has to be focused on the good of others; and if this happens, a fruitful apostolate is the result, for "apostolate, of whatever kind it be, must be an overflow of the interior life" ([St] J. Escriva, "Friends of God", 239). The Second Vatican Council, quoting this page from St. John, teaches what a Christian apostolate should be: "Christ, sent by the Father, is the source of the Church's whole apostolate. Clearly then, the fruitfulness of the apostolate of lay people depends on their living union with Christ; as the Lord Himself said: `He who abides in Me, and I in him, he it is that bears much fruit, for apart from Me you can do nothing'. This life of intimate union with Christ in the Church is maintained by the spiritual helps common to all the faithful, chiefly by the active participation in the Liturgy. Laymen should make such a use of these helps that, while meeting their human obligations in the ordinary conditions of life, they do not separate their union with Christ from their ordinary life; but through the very performance of their tasks, which are God's will for them, actually promote the growth of their union with Him" ("Apostolicam Actuositatem", 4).

6. If a person is not united to Christ by means of grace he will ultimately meet the same fate as the dead branches--fire. There is a clear parallelism with other images our Lord uses--the parables of the sound tree and the bad tree (Matthew 7:15-20), the dragnet (Matthew 13:49-50), and the invitation to the wedding (Matthew 22:11-14), etc. Here is how St. Augustine comments on this passage: "The wood of the vine is the more contemptible if it does not abide in the vine, and the more glorious if it does abide....For, being cut off it is profitable neither for the vinedresser nor for the carpenter. For one of these only is it useful--the vine or the fire. If it is not in the vine, it goes to the fire; to avoid going to the fire it must be joined to the vine" ("In Ioann. Evang.", 81, 3).
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Source: "The Navarre Bible: Text and Commentaries". Biblical text taken from the Revised Standard Version and New Vulgate. Commentaries made by members of the Faculty of Theology of the University of Navarre, Spain. Published by Four Courts Press, Kill Lane, Blackrock, Co. Dublin, Ireland. Reprinted with permission from Four Courts Press and Scepter Publishers, the U.S. publisher.

Principles and Practices - May 10

The Best Choice

Jesus Christ says last of all: Blessed are the humble and those who suffer persecution for justice, who are calumniated for My sake, who live and die in obscurity, victims of the holy love of God. The glory of the Saints will be their recompense and their lot. The world, however, next to gold and silver, next to sensual pleasures, esteems only glory and honours, tyranny and inde­pendence. It considers unhappy those who lead a hidden life without any renown, spent in the un­known service of charity and the care of the poor, the sick and the unfortunates of this world.

-Msgr. Albert Farges.
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From Principles and Practices
Compiled by Rev. J. Hogan of The Catholic Missionary Society
Published by Burns Oates & Washbourne Ltd., Publishers To The Holy See
Nihil Obstat; Eduardus J. Mahoney, S.T.D. Censor deputatus.
Imprimatur; Edm. Can. Surmont, Vicarius generalis.
First printed in 1930

Thoughts of St Augustine for May 10

WHEN is the way ended? It is not ended at the same hour to all. Each several man hath his hour when he shall end his way; when thou hast ended this life thou hast ended the way. We are going on and the very living is advancing.
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From Thoughts of St Augustine for Every Day
by Kathleen Mary Balfe (© 1926)
Nihil Obstat: Georgius D. Smith, S.T.D
Imprimatur: Edm. Can. Surmont

Thoughts from St Alphonsus for Every Day-May 10

IF we concentrate all the love that mothers bear their children, husbands and wives one another, all the love of the angels and saints for their clients, it does not equal the love of Mary towards a single soul.
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From Thoughts from St Alphonsus for Every Day
Compiled by Rev. C. McNeiry, C.SS.R.
Imprimatur: Joseph Hull, C.SS.R., Prov. Angl. Sup.
Nihil Obstat: Innocentlus Apap, O.P., S.T.M., Censor Deptutatus.
Imprimatur: Edm. Can. Surmont, Vicarius Generalis.
Westmonasterii, Die 9a Junii, 1927.
First published 1927

Dr. Alan Keyes Released from Jail -- And Will Bear Witness on Notre Dame Campus Again

SOUTH BEND, Ind., May 9 /Christian Newswire/ -- Dr. Alan Keyes and 20 peaceful pro-lifers were arrested yesterday after they walked onto Notre Dame's campus praying the rosary and pushing baby strollers carrying baby dolls covered in "stage blood" to protest the invitation of Notre Dame to President Obama to deliver the commencement address at this year's graduation.

Dr. Keyes will be leading peaceful witnesses again on campus this coming Tuesday and Friday -- and is calling on others to join him...
More here.

Abp Burke: Keynote Address, Nat'l Catholic Prayer Breakfast

Keynote Address of
The Most Reverend Raymond L. Burke, D.D., J.C.D.
Archbishop-Emeritus of Saint Louis
Prefect of the Supreme Tribunal of the Apostolic Signatura

National Catholic Prayer Breakfast

“Celebrations of the Teachings of the Catholic Church”

Washington, D.C.
May 8, 2009

Introduction

1. I am deeply honored to give the Keynote Address at this annual gathering of Catholics to pray for our nation. I express my heartfelt esteem and gratitude to those who, each year, organize and support the National Catholic Prayer Breakfast.

2. The theme of this year’s Breakfast is most fitting to the difficult time through which our nation is now passing. Before the fundamental and great challenges which we as a nation are facing, how better to express our patriotism than by celebrating the teachings of our Catholic faith. The most treasured gift which we as citizens of the United States of America can offer to our country is a faithful Catholic life. It is the gift which, even though it has often been misunderstood, has brought great strength to our nation, from the time of its founding. Today more than ever, our nation is in need of Catholics who know their faith deeply and express their faith, with integrity, by their daily living.

3. Although I no longer have my residence in our beloved nation, I am no less bound to practice the virtue of patriotism, taught and exemplified by Our Lord during His public ministry. It is Our Lord Who gives us, in the Church, the grace to practice patriotism as a fundamental expression of the bond of charity which we have, in Him, with our fellow citizens. From my earliest formation in the life of the faith, received at home from my parents and in the Catholic schools, it was clear to me that duty to one’s nation, to one’s fellow citizens, is integral to our life in Christ in the Church. In the Baltimore Catechism, the virtue of patriotism is joined with filial piety. These essentially connected virtues, in the words of the Catechism, dispose us to honor, love and respect our parents and our country (Revised Baltimore Catechism and Mass, No. 3, New York: Benziger Brothers, Inc., 1949, 1952, no. 135). Surely, the most fundamental expression of patriotism is daily prayer for our homeland, the United States of America, her citizens and her leaders. Our participation in the National Catholic Prayer Breakfast is, I trust, an extraordinary expression of the daily prayer which we all offer for our country, as good Catholics and, therefore, good citizens.

4. It pleases me that today’s celebration included a presentation by Mother Shaun Vergauwen, Superior General of the Franciscan Sisters of the Eucharist. I have known Mother Shaun’s religious congregation for all the years of my priestly life. The consecrated life of the Franciscan Sisters of the Eucharist is an inspired witness to the truths of our Catholic faith, especially what pertains to the Gospel of Life, and, therefore, also makes a strong contribution to the good of all citizens in our nation.

Growing Crisis in Our Nation

5. I come to you, this morning, with the deepest concern for our nation. I come to you, not as someone who stands outside of our nation but as a citizen who, with you as fellow citizens, takes responsibility for the state of our nation and, therefore, cannot remain indifferent and inactive about what most concerns the good of us all, especially those among us who are small, weak and defenseless.

6. Over the past several months, our nation has chosen a path which more completely denies any legal guarantee of the most fundamental human right, the right to life, to the innocent and defenseless unborn. Our nation, which had its beginning in the commitment to safeguard and promote the inalienable right to “Life, Liberty and the Pursuit of Happiness” for all, without boundary, is more and more setting arbitrary limits to her commitment (cf. The Declaration of Independence: Action of Second Continental Congress, 4 July 1776, in The Constitution of the United States with the Declaration of Independence and the Articles of Confederation, New York: Barnes and Noble Books, 2002, p. 81). Those in power now determine who will or will not be accorded the legal protection of the most fundamental right to life. First the legal protection of the right to life is denied to the unborn and, then, to those whose lives have become burdened by advanced years, special needs or serious illness, or whose lives are somehow judged to be unprofitable or unworthy.

7. What is more, those in power propose to force physicians and other healthcare professionals, in other words, those with a particular responsibility to protect and foster human life, to participate, contrary to what their conscience requires, in the destruction of unborn human lives, from the first or embryonic stage of development to the moment of birth. Our laws may soon force those who have dedicated themselves to the care of the sick and the promotion of good health to give up their noble life work, in order to be true to the most sacred dictate of their consciences. What is more, if our nation continues down the path it has taken, healthcare institutions operating in accord with the natural moral law, which teaches us that innocent human life is to be protected and fostered at all times and that it is always and everywhere evil to destroy an innocent human life, will be forced to close their doors.

8. At the same time, the fundamental society, that is, the family, upon which the life of our nation is founded and depends, is under attack by legislation which redefines marriage to include a relationship between two persons of the same sex and permits them to adopt children. In the same line, it is proposed to repeal the Defense of Marriage Act. At the root of the confusion and error about marriage is the contraceptive mentality – which would have us believe that the inherently procreative nature of the conjugal union can, in practice, be mechanically or chemically eliminated, while the marital act remains unitive. It cannot be so. With unparalleled arrogance, our nation is choosing to renounce its foundation upon the faithful, indissoluble, and inherently procreative love of a man and a woman in marriage, and, in violation of what nature itself teaches us, to replace it with a so-called marital relationship, according to the definition of those who exercise the greatest power in our society.

9. The path of violation of the most fundamental human rights and of the integrity of marriage and the family, which our nation is traveling, is not accidental. It is part of the program set forth by those whom we have freely chosen to lead our nation. The part of the program in question was not unknown to us; it was announced to us beforehand and a majority of our fellow citizens, including a majority of our fellow Catholics, chose the leadership which is now implementing it with determination. For example, I refer to our President’s declared support of the Freedom of Choice Act, which would make illegal any legislation restricting procured abortion; his repeal of the Mexico City Policy, permitting U.S. funding of procured abortion in other nations, together with the grant of fifty million dollars to the United Nations Fund for Population Activities which, for example, supported the Republic of China’s policy of one child per family by means of government-dictated sterilization and abortion; his proposal to rescind the regulations appended to the federal Conscience Clause, which assure that, not only physicians, but also all health-care workers may refuse to provide services, information or counsel to patients regarding medications and procedures which are contrary to their conscience; his removal of limitations on federal funding of embryonic-stem-cell research, involving the wholesale destruction of human life at the embryonic stage of development; and his choice of the members of his administration, who are remarkable for the number of major officials, including several Catholics, who favor the denial of the right to life to the unborn and the violation of the integrity of marriage and the family. These are only some examples of a consistent pattern of decisions by the leadership of our nation which is taking our nation down a path which denies the fundamental right to life to the innocent and defenseless unborn and violates the fundamental integrity of the marital union and the family.

10. As Catholics, we cannot fail to note, with the greatest sadness, the number of our fellow Catholics, elected or appointed by our President to public office, who cooperate fully in the advancement of a national agenda was is anti-life and anti-family. Most recently, the appointment of a Catholic as Secretary of Health and Human Services, who has openly and persistently cooperated with the industry of procured abortion in our nation, is necessarily a source of the deepest embarrassment to Catholics and a painful reminder of the most serious responsibility of Catholics to uphold the natural moral law, which is the irreplaceable foundation of just relationships among the citizens of our nation. It grieves me to say that the support of anti-life legislation by Catholics in public office is so common that those who are not Catholic have justifiably questioned whether the Church’s teaching regarding the inviolable dignity of innocent human life is firm and unchanging. It gives the impression that the Church herself can change the law which God has written on every human heart from the beginning of time and has declared in the Fifth Commandment of the Decalogue: Thou shalt not kill.

11. As is clear, the anti-life and anti-family path down which our nation is being led has repercussions for many other peoples who rely upon the United States for aid or who are influenced by the international policies upon which our nation insists. The interest of so many nations in our recent presidential election is a clear sign of the world leadership which our national leadership exercises. What those who were so enthused about the strong message of change and hope in the United States, delivered during the last election campaign, are now discovering is a consistent implementation of policies and programs which confirm and advance the culture of death, which can only finally leave our world without the great hope, described by our Holy Father Pope Benedict XVI in these words:
Let us say once again: we need the greater and lesser hopes that keep us going day by day. But these are not enough without the great hope, which must surpass everything else. This great hope can only be God, who encompasses the whole of reality and who can bestow upon us what we, by ourselves, cannot attain. The fact that it comes to us as a gift is actually part of hope. God is the foundation of hope: not any god, but the God who has a human face and who has loved us to the end, each one of us and humanity in its entirety. His Kingdom is not an imaginary hereafter, situated in a future that will never arrive; his Kingdom is present wherever he is loved and wherever his love reaches us.

His love alone gives us the possibility of soberly persevering day by day, without ceasing to be spurred on by hope, in a world which by its very nature is imperfect. His love is at the same time our guarantee of the existence of what we only vaguely sense and which nevertheless, in our deepest self, we await: a life that is truly life (Pope Benedict XVI, Encyclical Letter Spe salvi, On Christian Hope, 30 November 2007, Acta Apostolicae Sedis no. 31).

The change which brings hope can only be the renewal of our nation in the divine love which respects the inviolable dignity of every human life, from the moment of its inception to the moment of natural death, and which creates and gives growth to new human life through the love of man and woman in marriage. Any hope which is incoherent with the great hope is truly illusory and can never bring forth justice and its fruit, peace, for our nation and world.

Addressing the Crisis

12. How can we as Catholics address effectively the critical situation of our nation in what pertains to the fundamental right to life and the integrity of the family? What does the virtue of patriotism, together with all of the virtues inspired by the Holy Spirit dwelling within us, require of us for the common good, for the good of the whole nation? First and foremost, it demands what we are doing this morning, that is, prayer, and the serious reflection which arises from our communion with God in prayer.

13. When Our Lord descended from the Mount of the Transfiguration, he found that his disciples had tried, without success, to help a boy afflicted by an unclean spirit. Our Lord then cast out the unclean spirit, prompting his disciples, when they were alone with Him, to ask why they had been unable to free the boy from his affliction. Our Lord responded with these words: This kind cannot be driven out by anything but prayer and fasting (Mk 9:29). Our Lord reminded them that the good which they wished to accomplish in the face of great evil could only be attained through prayer and fasting. In other words, evil cannot be overcome by our own forces alone, but by the grace of God which inspires and strengthens our thoughts and actions. It is Christ alone who has accomplished the victory over sin and its most evil fruit, eternal death, and it is Christ alone, in the Church, who continues to bring forth the fruits of His victory in our lives and in our world.

14. In the battle for the protection of the right to life and for the safeguarding of the integrity of marriage and the family in our nation, we are easily tempted to give way to discouragement. And it would be right to do so, if the outcome of the battle depended upon us alone. But it does not. Christ is with us always in the Church and, in a particular way, in the struggle to restore the respect for the right to life of all of our brothers and sisters, especially those who are helpless and who have the first title to our care, and to safeguard the integrity of marriage and the family. Christ Who is the Gospel of Life, encountered in prayer and through the Sacraments, will give us the strength to announce His word of life and to act upon His word of life, on behalf of all in our nation, especially those who depend upon us to care for them and protect their God-given rights.

15. If we are serious about our patriotic duty, then we must pray everyday for our leaders, especially our President, and our nation. We should also practice more fervently our fasting and abstinence for the conversion of our lives and the transformation of our society. If we want to act for the common good, the good of all, in our nation, then we will seek to convert our lives each day to Christ, especially through the Sacraments of Penance and the Holy Eucharist. Christ desires to announce the Gospel of Life and bring about its saving effects in our nation by the complete conversion of our lives to Him for the sake of all our brothers and sisters, without boundary, and for the sake of the preservation of the sanctuary of human life, marriage and the family.

16. At various times of great crisis in our nation and in the world, the Holy Father and our Bishops have called upon all Catholics to offer special prayers for the nation and for the world. I recall so well, from my youth, the Leonine Prayers offered at the conclusion of every Mass to address the growing threat of atheistic materialism in our world. Remember, too, how Pope Saint Pius V, in 1571, called upon the whole Church to pray, especially through the intercession of the Blessed Virgin Mary, when the Christian world was under attack by the Turks. After the victory of the Battle of Lepanto, on October 7, 1571, he established October 7th as an annual feast in honor of Our Lady of the Rosary and introduced the title of Mary Help of Christians into the Litany of Loreto. In the present crisis, praying daily the Rosary for our nation and invoking daily the intercession of Mary Help of Christians will be powerful forces for the victory of life and love.

17. At every Mass, we should offer special prayers for our nation and her leaders, in order that the culture of death may be overcome and a civilization of love may be steadfastly advanced. All Catholics throughout the nation should take part in Eucharistic adoration and in the praying of the Rosary for the restoration of the respect for human life and for the safeguarding of the integrity of the family. In our prayers, we should seek, above all, the intercession of the Blessed Virgin Mary, under her title of the Immaculate Conception. Mary Immaculate is the patroness of our nation. In a most wonderful way, she appeared, on our continent, in what is present-day Mexico City, in 1531, as the Immaculate Mother of God, in order to manifest the all-merciful love of God toward His children of America. Through her example and intercession, the Native Americans and Europeans, who were on the brink of a most deadly conflict, were brought together to form one people under her maternal care, and the widespread practice of human sacrifice among the native people was brought to an end. In our time, in many parishes and dioceses there are campaigns of prayer for our nation and her leaders. May these powerful spiritual works continue and prosper, so that, through prayer and fasting, the grave evils of contraception, procured abortion, euthanasia, the experimentation on embryonic human life, and so-called same-sex marriage may be overcome in our nation.

18. Connected with our prayer must be the thoughtful and faithful reflection upon the Church’s teaching on the respect for all human life and the integrity of the family. In our homes, in our Catholic schools and universities, in parish study groups, and in everyday conversations and discussions with our neighbors, we are called to give an uncompromising witness to the Gospel of Life. Parents, parish priests and institutions of Catholic education must be aware of the constant anti-life and anti-family messages which constantly bombard us and our young people. One has only to think, for example, of the corruption of the goodness of our youth by the multi-million dollar industry of pornography, especially on the Internet. Our reflection as individuals and groups must open our eyes to the gravity of the situation in our nation, lest we fail to take responsibility for the widespread attacks on human life and the family. Our reflection must help us all and, in a particular way, our young people to see the godless secularism and relativism which underly and justify our nation’s anti-life and anti-family programs, policies and laws.

19. Our encounter with the world must be clear and uncompromising. Parents must reflect in their daily living the lifelong and rich fruit of the Gospel of Life, which they are called to teach to their children. Catholic educational institutions must devote themselves ever more strenuously to the study of the truths of the faith, addressing them to the moral challenges of our time. In a culture marked by widespread and grave confusion and error about the most fundamental teachings of the moral law, our Catholic schools and universities must be beacons of truth and right conduct. Clearly, the same is true of our Catholic charitable, missionary and healthcare institutions. There can be no place in them for teaching or activities which offend the moral law. Dialogue and respect for differences are not promoted by the compromise and even violation of the natural moral law. The profound granting of an honorary doctorate at Notre Dame University to our President who is as aggressively advancing an anti-life and anti-family agenda is a source of the gravest scandal. Catholic institutions cannot offer any platform to, let alone honor, those who teach and act publicly against the moral law. In a culture which embraces an agenda of death, Catholics and Catholic institutions are necessarily counter-cultural. If we as individuals or our Catholic institutions are not willing to accept the burdens and the suffering necessarily involved in calling our culture to reform, then we are not worthy of the name Catholic.

Catholics and Public Life

20. Our prayer and conversion of life, and the serious reflection upon and study of the truths of the moral life, both as individuals and in our Catholic institutions, require that we accept our responsibility as citizens to work tirelessly to change unjust programs, policies and laws. In a nation set so firmly on a path of violation of the most fundamental moral norms, Catholics and others who adhere to the natural moral law are pressured to think that their religious commitment to the moral law as the way of seeking the good of all is a merely confessional matter which cannot have any application in public life. Apparently, a number of Catholics in public life have been so convinced. How often do we hear Catholic legislators who vote in favor of anti-life and anti-family legislation claim that they are personally opposed to what the legislation protects and fosters, but that they as public officials may not allow religious beliefs to affect their support of such legislation? How often do we hear fellow Catholics supporting candidates for office, who are anti-life and anti-family, because of political-party loyalties or for reasons of other policies and programs supported by the candidate, which they deem to be good? How often is such thinking justified by the claim that religious faith is a purely private matter and has no place in the public forum? On the contrary, the common good depends upon the active engagement of religious faith in the public forum.

21. Addressing the role of the Church in the political order, Pope Benedict XVI reminds us:

It must not be forgotten that, when Churches or ecclesial communities intervene in public debate, expressing reservations or recalling various principles, this does not constitute a form of intolerance or interference, since such interventions are aimed solely at enlightening consciences, enabling them to act freely and responsibly, according to the true demands of justice, even when this should conflict with situations of power and personal interest (Pope Benedict XVI, Ad Congressum a Populari Europae Faction provectum, Acta Apostolicae Sedis 98 [2006], 344)."

In his Encyclical Letter Deus caritas est, our Holy Father reminded us of the great gift of our faith which enables reason to do its work more effectively and to see its proper object more clearly (Pope Benedict XVI, Encylical Letter Deus caritas est , On Christian Love, 25 December 2005, Acta Apostolicae Sedis 98 [2006], 239, no. 28). When the Church addresses her social teaching to issues of the common good, she has no intention of giving the Church power over the State or to impose on those who do not share the faith ways of thinking and modes of conduct proper to faith (Deus caritas est, no. 28). Her aim, which is our aim as patriotic Catholics, is simply to help purify reason and to contribute, here and now, to the acknowledgment and attainment of what is just (Deus caritas est, no. 28). In addressing the critical issues of our nation, the Church and we, as her faithful sons and daughters, intervene on the basis of reason and natural law, namely, on the basis of what is in accord with the nature of every human being (Deus caritas est, no. 28).

22. Our uncompromising commitment to protect the inviolable dignity of innocent human life and to safeguard the integrity of marriage and the family are not based on peculiar confessional beliefs or practices but on the natural moral law, written on every heart and, therefore, a fundamental part of the Church’s moral teaching. At the same time, what is always and everywhere evil cannot be called good for the sake of accomplishing some other good end. All of us must be concerned about a wide range of goods which are important to the life of our nation, but the concern for those goods can never justify the betrayal of the fundamental goods of life itself and the family. We must take care to uproot from our moral thinking any form of relativism, consequentialism and proportionalism, which would lead us into the error of thinking that it is sometimes right to do what is always and everywhere evil.

23. An important part of our moral reflection must include a clear understanding of the principles regarding cooperation in evil, especially by the act of voting. Too often, in our time, our inability to accomplish all that we should for the sake of the defense of the right to life and of the protection of the integrity of the family is used to justify the direct choice of a political leader who espouses a position or positions in violation of the natural moral law. The Servant of God Pope John Paul II, in his Encyclical Letter Evangelium vitae, addresses at length the question of cooperation in evil which violates the dignity of innocent human life. He offers as an example the case of a legislator who has the possibility of voting for a law which would restrict the evil of procured abortion, even though it would not eradicate it completely. He concludes that the legislator could vote for the legislation, while his own opposition to procured abortion remains clear, for his vote does not in fact represent an illicit cooperation with an unjust law, but rather a legitimate and proper attempt to limit its evil aspects (Pope John Paul II, Encylical Letter Evangelium vitae , On the Good and Inviolability of Human Life, 25 March 1995, Acta Apostolicae Sedis 87 [1995], 487, no. 73). In an analogous manner, as voters, we are often faced with a choice among candidates who do not fully oppose unjust laws. In such a case, we must choose the candidate who will most limit the evil effects of unjust laws. But, there is no element of the common good, no morally good practice, which a candidate may promote and to which a voter may be dedicated, which could justify voting for a candidate who also endorses and supports the deliberate killing of the unborn, euthanasia or the recognition of a same-sex relationship as a legal marriage. The respect for the inviolable dignity of innocent human life and for the integrity of marriage and the family are so fundamental to the common good that they cannot be subordinated to any other cause, no matter how good it may be.

24. In the present situation of our nation, a serious question has arisen about the moral obligation of Catholics to work for the overturning of the Supreme Court decisions in Roe v. Wade and Doe v. Bolton. There are those who would tell us that such work is futile and, therefore, is to be abandoned, so that we can devote ourselves to help prevent individuals from choosing abortion. As Catholics, we can never cease to work for the correction of gravely unjust laws. Law is a fundamental expression of our culture and implicitly teaches citizens what is morally acceptable. Our efforts to assist those who are tempted to do what is always and everywhere wrong or are suffering from the effects of having committed a gravely immoral act, which are essential expressions of the charity which unites us as citizens of the nation, ultimately make little sense, if we remain idle regarding unjust laws and decisions of the courts regarding the same intrinsic evils. We are never justified in abandoning the work of changing legislation and of reversing decisions of the courts which are anti-life and anti-family.

Conclusion

25. As we gather this morning to pray for our nation, let us draw courage and strength from the glorious pierced Heart of Our Lord Jesus. Let us not give way to discouragement in our exercise of patriotism but rather be confident of the essential contribution which our Catholic faith makes to the life of our nation.

26. May the courage and strength which comes to us from the Sacred Heart of Jesus enlighten our minds to see more clearly the gravity of the situation of our nation and inflame our hearts to do our part to transform the life of our nation, in accord with the natural moral law, that is, with what is just and serves the good of all. Let us draw courage and strength from the Sacred Heart of Jesus through prayer and the Sacraments, especially the Sacraments of Penance and the Holy Eucharist. May the courage and strength of Christ guide our reflection on the state of our nation and lead us to that just action, taught to us by our faith, which serves the good of all.

27. Invoking the intercession of Mary Immaculate, Our Lady of Guadalupe, Mother of America, let us pray today and everyday that we as Catholics, true to our faith and, therefore, patriotically devoted to our nation, may promote respect for all human life, safeguard the sanctity of marriage and the family, and, thereby, foster the good of all in the nation and in the world.

Thank you. God bless you.
###

Friday, May 08, 2009

Gospel for Saturday, 4th Week of Easter

From: John 14:7-14

Jesus Reveals the Father

(Jesus said to Thomas,) [7] "If you had known Me, you would have known My Father also; henceforth you know Him and have seen Him.

[8] Philip said to Him, "Lord, show us the Father, and we shall be satisfied." [9] Jesus said to him, "Have I been with you so long, and yet you do not know Me, Philip? He who has seen Me has seen the Father; how can you say, `Show us the Father?' [10] Do you not believe that I am in the Father and the Father in Me? The words that I say to you I do not speak on My own authority; but the Father who dwells in Me does His works. [11] Believe Me that I am in the Father and the Father in Me; or else believe Me for the sake of the words themselves.

[12] "Truly, truly, I say to you, he who believes in Me will also do the works that I do; and greater works than these will he do, because I go to the Father. [13] Whatever you ask in my name I will do it, that the Father may be glorified in the Son; [14] if you ask anything in my name, I will do it."
_____________________
Commentary:
8-11. The Apostles still find our Lord's words very mysterious, because they cannot understand the oneness of the Father and the Son. Hence Philip's persistence. Then Jesus "upbraids the Apostle for not yet knowing Him, even though His works are proper to God--walking on the water, controlling the wind, forgiving sins, raising the dead. This is why He reproves him: for not recognizing His divine condition through His human nature" (St. Augustine, "De Trinitate", Book 7).

Obviously the sight of the Father which Jesus refers to in this passage is a vision through faith, for no one has ever seen God as He is (cf. John 1:18; 6:46). All manifestations of God, or "theophanies", have been through some medium; they are only a reflection of God's greatness. The highest _expression which we have of God our Father is in Christ Jesus, the Son of God sent among men. "He did this by the total fact of His presence and self-manifestation--by words and works, signs and miracles, but above all by His death and glorious resurrection from the dead, and finally by sending the Spirit of truth. He revealed that God was with us, to deliver us from the darkness of sin and death, and to raise us up to eternal life" (Vatican II, "Dei Verbum", 4).

12-14. Before leaving this world, the Lord promises His Apostles to make them sharers in His power so that God's salvation may be manifested through them. These "works" are the miracles they will work in the name of Jesus Christ (cf. Acts 3:1-10; 5:15-16; etc.), and especially the conversion of people to the Christian faith and their sanctification by preaching and the ministry of the sacraments. They can be considered greater works than Jesus' own insofar as, by the Apostles' ministry, the Gospel was not only preached in Palestine but was spread to the ends of the earth; but this extraordinary power of apostolic preaching proceeds from Christ, who has ascended to the Father: after undergoing the humiliation of the cross Jesus has been glorified and from Heaven He manifests His power by acting through His Apostles.

The Apostles' power, therefore, derives from Christ glorified. Christ our Lord says as much: "Whatever you ask in My name, I will do it". "It is not that he who believes in Me will be greater than Me, but that only that I shall then do greater works than now; greater, by him who believes in Me, than I now do by myself without Him" (St. Augustine, "In Ioann. Evang.", 72, 1).

Jesus Christ is our intercessor in Heaven; therefore, He promises us that everything we ask for in His name, He will do. Asking in His name (cf. 15:7, 16; 16:23-24) means appealing to the power of the risen Christ, believing that He is all-powerful and merciful because He is true God; and it also means asking for what is conducive to our salvation, for Jesus is our Savior. Thus, by "whatever you ask" we must understand what is for the good of the asker. When our Lord does not give what we ask for, the reason is that it would not make for our salvation. In this way we can see that He is our Savior both when He refuses us what we ask and when He grants it.
___________________________
Source: "The Navarre Bible: Text and Commentaries". Biblical text taken from the Revised Standard Version and New Vulgate. Commentaries made by members of the Faculty of Theology of the University of Navarre, Spain. Published by Four Courts Press, Kill Lane, Blackrock, Co. Dublin, Ireland. Reprinted with permission from Four Courts Press and Scepter Publishers, the U.S. publisher.

Principles and Practices - May 9

Strength of the Meek

'Blessed are the meek,' said our divine Lord, 'for they shall inherit the earth.'

Does not this mean that the meek shall possess power over souls and control them by their very gentleness, that, far from being passive, con­sists of strength, self-possession and unchangeable serenity?

One who is assailed by the sufferings and trials of life, and never flinches; who by God's grace has learnt how to hide the depths of his own soul under a veil which allows the soul's light to shine on others without permitting its central point to be reached by agitation or trouble from without, is strong by God's own strength, and can say with S. Paul: 'I live, not I, but Christ liveth in me,' and giveth me His peace.

-Elizabeth Leseur.
_________________
From Principles and Practices
Compiled by Rev. J. Hogan of The Catholic Missionary Society
Published by Burns Oates & Washbourne Ltd., Publishers To The Holy See
Nihil Obstat; Eduardus J. Mahoney, S.T.D. Censor deputatus.
Imprimatur; Edm. Can. Surmont, Vicarius generalis.
First printed in 1930

Thoughts of St Augustine for May 9

OUR time is very near to each one of us, seeing we are mortal. We walk in the midst of chance. If we were made of glass we should have to fear chances less than we have. What is more fragile than a vessel of glass?
_________________________
Click here for more information.

From Thoughts of St Augustine for Every Day
by Kathleen Mary Balfe (© 1926)
Nihil Obstat: Georgius D. Smith, S.T.D
Imprimatur: Edm. Can. Surmont

Thoughts from St Alphonsus for Every Day-May 9

How great should be our confidence in this Queen, knowing her great power with God, and that she is so rich and full of mercy, that there is no one living on the earth who does not partake of her compassion and favour.
_________________
From Thoughts from St Alphonsus for Every Day
Compiled by Rev. C. McNeiry, C.SS.R.
Imprimatur: Joseph Hull, C.SS.R., Prov. Angl. Sup.
Nihil Obstat: Innocentlus Apap, O.P., S.T.M., Censor Deptutatus.
Imprimatur: Edm. Can. Surmont, Vicarius Generalis.
Westmonasterii, Die 9a Junii, 1927.
First published 1927

Archbishop Burke Slams Obama's Appearance at Notre Dame

One of the Vatican's highest ranked clerics and a frequent critic of President Obama said Friday that Notre Dame is causing a "scandal" by giving the president an honorary degree and a platform to address graduates at its commencement next weekend.

'The proposed granting of an honorary doctorate at Notre Dame University to our president, who is so aggressively advancing an anti-life and anti-family agenda, is rightly the source of the greatest scandal," said Archbishop Raymond Burke, who is the prefect of the Apostolic Signatura, the Vatican's highest court.

Burke, the former archbishop of St. Louis and vocal opponent of giving communion to politicians who support abortion rights, told Catholics at a national prayer breakfast in Washington, D.C., that "with unparalleled arrogance, our nation is choosing to renounce its foundation on the faithful."

He pointed to several Obama administration decisions that he said have damaged "the fundamental society that is the family," citing the repeal of the conscience clause, which prohibits health care workers from refusing to participate in abortion-related services; repeal of the Mexico City policy, which allows federal funding to be used abroad to provide abortions; presidential support of the Freedom of Choice Act, which prevents government from in any way denying or interfering with a woman's right to choose; and support of the U.S. Population Fund, which he noted supports China's one-child policy.
Source.

Chairman Maobama [Public Enemy #1] and his treasonous thug criminal friends are taking this country down the path toward hell, the abode of his mentors and heroes. America would do well to awake from its complacent slumber before its citizens find themselves enslaved even more...

The fact that Notre Dame surrenders to Satan and his earthly minions like Obama is, after the genocide of unborn innocents, one of the greatest scandals of our time...

Thursday, May 07, 2009

News Updates, 5/8

Alan Keyes among 21 arrested at Notre Dame
Former Illinois U.S. Senate candidate Alan Keyes and 20 other protesters were arrested this morning when they refused to leave the Notre Dame campus during a protest of President Obama's upcoming commencement address there, a university spokesman said.

Angel or Demon? In the Vatican, Obama Is Both
"L'Osservatore Romano" praises him. Two prominent scholars of the pontifical academy of social sciences rail against him. The complete text of the accusation, signed by Michel Schooyans in conjunction with the archbishop of Dijon, Roland Minnerath

68 U.S. Bishops Oppose Notre Dame's "Serious Mistake"
Two more bishops are continuing the steady stream of criticism aimed at the University of Notre Dame for honoring Chairman MaObama with the commencement address and an honorary law degree May 17. However, unlike several of their brother bishops, the two bishops say that despite the gravity of the scandal, the invitation ought not to be rescinded out of respect for the office of the Presidency...

Taliban warns Pope Benedict on 'proselytism'
'Reaction' threat after US soldiers seen with Bibles

Cardinal Sean Brady: IRA dissidents shame Ireland
Splinter groups still plotting gun and bomb attacks

Vatican defrocks Vermont priest over abuse
Former altar boy was awarded $3.6 million by diocese

Israeli officials deny reports about holy sites
Claim Peres did not suggest ceding control to Vatican

Prominent priest leaves Legion for NY archdiocese
Claims revelations about Maciel are not the reason

Celebrity priest raised questions about celibacy
Rally supporting disgraced pastor interrupted by scuffle

Alaskan diocese cuts salaries by 20 percent
Cutting costs because of decreased interest income

Vatican newspaper embarrasses itself over Obama
Columnist set up straw man for President's first 100 days

No Christian license plates for Florida drivers
Design with images of crucified Jesus dies in congress

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Other Issues
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Mike Morgan - No More Trading Advice
I’ve had many requests to not kill off the weekly client onference calls and updates. In fact, new renewals doubled, since I announced the cancellation of services. Unfortunately, this market is beyond irrational. It is now criminal. There is nothing we can do when regulators allow the corruption we have seen. Here are just two examples:
1 – Stephen Friedman, former CEO of Goldman Sachs and most recently the Chairman of the New York Fed, was allowed to own, buy and trade Goldman Sachs stock while overseeing Goldman Sachs banking issues in New York State and the AIG bailout dollars that flowed to Goldman Sachs and to basically run his own little mafia style racketeering organization....
2 – Ken Lewis accuses Paulson and Bernanke of mafia tactics. He does this under oath. Bernanke, also under oath, tells Congress that Lewis is a liar. Two men under oath calling the other a perjurer, yet no one investigates. No one even questions this....
[We are being governed by those who promote LAWLESSNESS and THEFT by the government and its accomplices!!!]

U.S. jobless rate hits 25-year high
...the Labor Department said the unemployment rate soared to 8.9 percent, the highest since September 1983, from 8.5 percent in March.
[Real unemployment - the U6 is nearly 16%]

Obama Said Planning to Visit Buchenwald Concentration Camp
Chairman B. Hussein Obama is scheduled to visit the Nazi concentration camp of Buchenwald during his upcoming tour of Europe, official German sources reported Friday.
[Getting ideas from one of his heros, no doubt]

WHO: Up to 2 billion people might get swine flu
The World Health Organization said Thursday that up to 2 billion people could be infected by swine flu if the current outbreak turns into a pandemic. The agency said a pandemic typically lasts two years.

Fed tells GMAC to raise $13.1 billion
The Federal Reserve on Thursday reportedly told GMAC, the lending unit of General Motors Corp. , to raise $13.1 billion in capital to ensure the company's stability amid heavy losses...

Chavez starts, Obama to follow his lead
Chavez says Venezuela to take over oil services
CARACAS, May 7 (Reuters) - The government will quickly take control of hundreds of small boats and other assets belonging to oil service companies operating in Venezuela, President Hugo Chavez said on Thursday, tightening his grip on the industry. Earlier in the day, Venezuela's legislature approved a law allowing the nationalization of a group of oil service companies. Chavez said the takeovers will start on Friday in the Lake Maracaibo oil heartland....
[Chairman Maobama advisors are probably in the country observing and taking notes so the the Fraudster can do the same thing.]

Rep Keith Ellison (D-Caliphate) Awards "Muslim Democrat of the Year" to Oppressors of Christians
...During the gathering, Maldives Foreign Minister Ahmed Shaheed will receive the “Muslim Democrat of the Year” award for his work in the past 15 years to strengthen and promote democracy and human rights in the Maldives.

Eight members of homosexual pedophile ring found guilty of child porn and sex charges
The groundbreaking court case uncovered Scotland's biggest paedophile network and revealed the shocking crimes of a "spider's web of apparently respectable men"....Rennie, 38, was the chief executive of LGBT Youth Scotland, a group dedicated to helping young lesbian and homosexual deal with their sexuality. Strachan, 41, a paint firm engineer who was previously jailed for molesting a young boy, was the former secretary of a Celtic boys club and a campaigner on homosexual issues.
[And the fraudulent claim is made that these pedophiles are not homosexual...And perverted and deviant child molesters are being given "protection" by the scum in Washington DC. This country is doomed unless it is cleansed of these treasonous vermin.]

Your Yard Sale May Be Illegal
Thinking of having a yard sale this weekend? Before you do, be sure to consult CSPC Publication #254 [PDF].
This handy 28-pager from the Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) reminds the American people that, thanks to the Consumer Product Safety Improvement Act, the government is totally in charge of your yard sale:
[Feds now regulate those as well - losing your freedoms everyday - the Fascists are everywhere!]

===============
Welcome to the New Amerika - "Chains you can believe in"

Gospel for Friday, 4th Week of Easter

Optional Memorial (Canada): Bl Catherine of St Augustine, Religious

From: John 14:1-6

Jesus Reveals the Father

(Jesus said to His disciples,) [1] "Let not your hearts be troubled; believe in God, believe also in Me. [2] In My Father's house are many rooms; if it were not so, would I have told you that I go to prepare a place for you? [3] And when I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again and will take you to Myself, that where I am you may be also. [4] And you know the way where I am going." [5] Thomas said to Him, "Lord, we do not know where You are going; how can we know the way?" [6] Jesus said to him, "I am the Way, and the Truth, and the Life; no one comes to the Father, but by Me."
_____________________
Commentary:
1-3. Apparently this prediction of Peter's denial has saddened the disciples. Jesus cheers them up by telling them that He is going away to prepare a place for them in Heaven, for Heaven they will eventually attain, despite their shortcomings and dragging their feet. The return which Jesus refers to includes His Second Coming (Parousia) at the end of the world (cf. 1 Corinthians 4:5; 11:26; 1 Thessalonians 4:16-17; 1 John 2:28) and His meeting with each soul after death: Christ has prepared a Heavenly dwelling-place through His work of redemption. Therefore, His words can be regarded as being addressed not only to the Twelve but also to everyone who believes in Him over the course of the centuries. The Lord will bring with Him into glory all those who have believed in Him and have stayed faithful to Him.

4-7. The Apostles did not really understand what Jesus was telling them: hence Thomas' question. The Lord explains that He is the way to the Father. "It was necessary for Him to say `I am the Way' to show them that they really knew what they thought they were ignorant of, because they knew Him" (St. Augustine, "In. Ioann. Evang.", 66, 2).

Jesus is the way to the Father--through what He teaches, for by keeping to His teaching we will reach Heaven; through faith, which He inspires, because He came to this world so "that whoever believes in Him may have eternal life" (John 3:15); through His example, since no one can go to the Father without imitating the Son; through His merits, which make it possible for us to enter our Heavenly home; and above all He is the way because He reveals the Father, with whom He is one because of His divine nature.

"Just as children by listening to their mothers, and prattling with them, learn to speak their language, so we, by keeping close to the Savior in meditation, and observing His words, His actions, and His affections, shall learn, with the help of His grace, to speak, to act, and to will like Him.

"We must pause here...; we can reach God the Father by no other route...; the Divinity could not be well contemplated by us in this world below if it were not united to the sacred humanity of the Savior, whose life and death are the most appropriate, sweet, delicious and profitable subjects which we can choose for our ordinary meditations" (St. Francis de Sales, "Introduction to the Devout Life", Part II, Chapter 1, 2).

"I am the way": He is the only path linking Heaven and Earth. "He is speaking to all men, but in a special way He is thinking of people who, like you and me, are determined to take our Christian vocation seriously: He wants God to be forever in our thoughts, on our lips and in everything we do, including our most ordinary and routine actions.

"Jesus is the way. Behind Him on this Earth of ours He has left the clear outlines of His footprints. They are indelible signs which neither the erosion of time nor the treachery of the Evil One have been able to erase" ([St] J. Escriva, "Friends of God", 127).

Jesus' words do much more than provide an answer to Thomas' question; He tells us: "I am the Way, and the Truth, and the Life". Being the Truth and the Life is something proper to the Son of God become man, who St. John says in the prologue of his Gospel is "full of grace and truth" (1:14). He is the Truth because by coming to this world He shows that God is faithful to His promises, and because He teaches the truth about who God is and tells us that true worship must be "in spirit and truth" (John 4:23). He is Life because from all eternity He has divine life with His Father (cf. John 1:4), and because He makes us, through grace, sharers in that divine life. This is why the Gospel says: "This is eternal life, that they know Thee, the only true God, and Jesus Christ whom Thou has sent" (John 17:3).

By His reply Jesus is, "as it were, saying, By which route do you want to go? I am the Way. To where do you want to go? I am the Truth. Where do you want to remain? I am the Life. Every man can attain an understanding of the Truth and the Life; but not all find the Way. The wise of this world realize that God is eternal life and knowable truth; but the Word of God, who is Truth and Life joined to the Father, has become the Way by taking a human nature. Make your way contemplating His humility and you will reach God" (St. Augustine, "De Verbis Domini Sermones", 54).
___________________________
Source: "The Navarre Bible: Text and Commentaries". Biblical text taken from the Revised Standard Version and New Vulgate. Commentaries made by members of the Faculty of Theology of the University of Navarre, Spain. Published by Four Courts Press, Kill Lane, Blackrock, Co. Dublin, Ireland. Reprinted with permission from Four Courts Press and Scepter Publishers, the U.S. publisher.

Fr. Corapi on Notre Dame Scandal

From The Cardinal Newman Society:
----------------------
Dear Brothers and Sisters in Christ,

As May 17 approches, it is now almost certain that the University of Notre Dame will violate the Bishops' clear prohibition against honoring pro-abortion leaders at Catholic institutions - ignoring the pleas of nearly 70 Catholic bishops and more than 350,000 of you!

So what are we to do? Right now, as Bishop Wenski, of Orlando said in his Mass of reparation, "I am not going to send upset Catholics to storm Notre Dame with pitchforks, I am going to tell them to pray." In that same spirit let us pray for the graduating seniors, Notre Dame and the renewal of faithful Catholic higher education in our country.

If you are near South Bend, graduates of Notre Dame who oppose the commencement honor have invited others to join them in adoration, Mass and prayer at Notre Dame's Campus. For details please visit their website: NDResponse.com

With gratitude for your witness of the Catholic faith, Fr. John Corapi has taped the following message about what the scandal at Notre Dame means for our faith and the importance of not giving up the fight.



Please forward this to your friends and remember to pray for Notre Dame. For ongoing updates or if you are unable to view the video in this message please go to NotreDameScandal.com

In Christ,
Patrick J. Reilly
President
The Cardinal Newman Society

Principles and Practices - May 8

The First Lesson

We may gather that without humility it is impossible to please God, and that there is no other way of gaining heaven. It is the beginning, foundation, and safeguard of all good, which all the saints who are now in heaven embraced as the first lesson in the school of virtue. Wherefore we may be sure that if ever we will reach any degree of perfection, either of grace in this life or of glory hereafter, it is absolutely necessary that we become as little children by humility: little in our own eyes, little in the eyes of the world, little before God.

-Fr. Constantine Barbanson.
_________________
From Principles and Practices
Compiled by Rev. J. Hogan of The Catholic Missionary Society
Published by Burns Oates & Washbourne Ltd., Publishers To The Holy See
Nihil Obstat; Eduardus J. Mahoney, S.T.D. Censor deputatus.
Imprimatur; Edm. Can. Surmont, Vicarius generalis.
First printed in 1930

Thoughts of St Augustine for May 8

THE Lord then did not blame Martha's work, but distinguished between their services.
Thou art occupied about many things, yet one thing is needful. Already hath Mary chosen this for herself. The labour of manifoldness passeth a way and the love of unity abideth.
_________________________
Click here for more information.

From Thoughts of St Augustine for Every Day
by Kathleen Mary Balfe (© 1926)
Nihil Obstat: Georgius D. Smith, S.T.D
Imprimatur: Edm. Can. Surmont

Thoughts from St Alphonsus for Every Day-May 8

MARY is not only willing to help, but she herself offers milk and wool to all: the milk of mercy to animate our confidence, and the wool of her protection against the thunderbolts of divine justice.
_________________
From Thoughts from St Alphonsus for Every Day
Compiled by Rev. C. McNeiry, C.SS.R.
Imprimatur: Joseph Hull, C.SS.R., Prov. Angl. Sup.
Nihil Obstat: Innocentlus Apap, O.P., S.T.M., Censor Deptutatus.
Imprimatur: Edm. Can. Surmont, Vicarius Generalis.
Westmonasterii, Die 9a Junii, 1927.
First published 1927

Dr Edward Peters Responds to Archbishop Wuerl's Refusal to Protect the Holy Eucharist

Dr Peters has a response to Abp. Wuerl's claims that canon law supports his inaction in regard to Nancy Pelosi

Abp. Donald Wuerl of Washington DC continues to defend his refusal to withhold holy Communion from Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi in a number of ways, but his recent claims that canon law supports his inaction attract my attention. I think the prelate's canonical claims are wrong...
See why here.

I have a response to Archbishop Wuerl's complicity in the continued scandal and sacrilege, also - he's a weak and worthless shepherd who has absolutely no business being a bishop. He is either a coward or a willing ally of the heretics in DC. May God have mercy on his soul.

National Right to Life Slams Obama the Fraud

What follows is a press release issued by the National Right to Life Committee (NRLC) in Washington, D.C., on Thursday, May 7, 2009, at 1:30 PM EDT. For further information, contact the NRLC Federal Legislation Department, 202-626-8820, Legfederal@aol.com, or the NRLC Communications Department, 202-626-8825, mediarelations@nrlc.org, or visit the NRLC website at http://www.nrlc.org/

National Right to Life Slams Obama White House for Urging Repeal of Ban on Tax-Funded Abortion-on-Demand in Nation's Capital

The following statement was released by the nation's largest pro-life organization, the National Right to Life Committee (NRLC), soon after today's release by the White House of President Obama's first detailed budget recommendations to Congress. The White House document is intended to guide lawmakers as they craft spending bills for the new federal fiscal year that begins on October 1. NRLC is the federation of the right-to-life organizations in all 50 states.

"Some wide-eyed journalists and various political shills for the Obama Administration continue to write fairy tales about how President Obama wants to pursue policies that would reduce abortions," said Douglas Johnson, legislative director for the National Right to Life Committee (NRLC). "That is a political scam. In reality, President Obama is pursuing a step-by-step strategy to expand access to abortion, and today's step is to urge Congress to authorize the funding of abortion on demand in the nation's capital, with funds appropriated by Congress."

Today's White House budget submission explicitly urges the House and Senate -- which the President's party currently controls with nearly three-fifths majorities -- to repeal a law (sometimes called the Dornan Amendment) that has prevented tax-funded abortion in the District of Columbia for many years.

Article I of the U.S. Constitution says that Congress holds complete legislative authority over the District of Columbia ("exclusive legislation in all cases whatsoever"). That is why the entire budget for the District of Columbia (including revenues generated by local sources) must be appropriated by Congress through an annual appropriations bill.

For many years, the annual D.C. appropriations bill has contained a provision to prevent the use of any congressionally appropriated funds for abortions (except to save the life of the mother, or in cases of rape or incest). The White House budget document released today (on Appendix page 1209) asks Congress to repeal the ban on the use of congressionally appropriated funds, and replace it with a meaningless bookkeeping requirement that would apply only to funds specifically contributed for federal program purposes.

"If Congress goes along with the Obama proposal, the predictable result will be tax funding of several thousand elective abortions annually, including roughly 1,000 abortions annually that would not otherwise occur," said Douglas Johnson, legislative director for NRLC. "Any member of Congress who votes for a bill that contains the White House proposal is, in reality, voting for tax-funded abortion on demand with congressionally appropriated funds."

From 1988 until 1993, Congress annually included the ban on the use of any appropriated funds to pay for abortions (with narrow exceptions). The ban was temporarily lost early in the Clinton Administration, but it was restored in 1996 (although the city government illegally continued to pay for abortions for two subsequent years, according to press reports), and has been in continuous effect ever since.

During the period prior to enactment of the Dornan Amendment, and during the time it was suspended in the Clinton Administration, the city government paid for elective abortion on demand with congressionally appropriated public funds. During the congressional debates of that era, evidence was cited that indicated that the city's abortion-funding policy was among the most permissive in the nation, and was not even limited to Medicaid-eligible clients. Elizabeth Reveal, D.C. budget director at the time, "confirmed that the District's government has a policy of funding abortion on demand and does not attempt to determine the circumstances of the pregnancy." (Philadelphia Inquirer, August 1, 1985.) In 1994, then-Mayor Sharon Pratt Kelly authorized the use of $1,000,000 from the Medical Charities fund, which was originally set up to help indigent AIDS patients, to pay for abortions.

Pro-abortion groups periodically publish academic studies that demonstrate that policies that bar tax-funded abortions actually prevent one-third or more of the abortions that would otherwise occur among the covered populations.

"The abortion industry's own studies suggest that many thousands of residents of the nation's capital are alive today because of the abortion funding ban that President Obama now proposes to repeal," said NRLC's Johnson.

"Today's White House action is one more evidence that President Obama is trying to pull off a massive policy scam -- he generates a smokescreen of soothing rhetoric about seeking 'common ground' and 'abortion reduction,' while step by step advancing concrete policies that will substantially increase the number of abortions -- and pay for abortion on demand with everyone's taxes," Johnson concluded.

The next step, Johnson suggested, would be "an attempt to smuggle vast expansions of abortion into law through health care reform legislation."

Barack Obama met with Planned Parenthood in 2007 and promised that mandatory abortion coverage would be "at the center, the heart of" his health care reform legislation. In an April 30, 2009, National Public Radio report, Cecile Richards, president of the Planned Parenthood Federation of America, confirmed that "health care reform is going to provide a platform" for ensuring that "all women . . . regardless of their income, can get access to the full range of health care options..."

The National Right to Life Committee (NRLC) is a national federation of nonsectarian right-to-life organizations, governed by a board elected by the state right-to-life organizations and by members at large.

Missouri Right to Life is the sole Missouri affiliate of the National Right to Life.

Wednesday, May 06, 2009

News Updates, 5/7

No end to the trend
University of San Francisco to feature dissident bishop, anti-Prop. 8 district attorney at commencement exercises later this month

House GOP Demands Probe of Obama Admin Report Saying Pro-Lifers Extremists
House Republicans have used a rare Congressional procedure to force a potential probe of documents the Obama administration released calling pro-life people "right-wing extremists." The move forces a Congressional panel to vote on a resolution calling for an investigation...
[I'd love to see someone go "medieval' on the crooks, liars and thugs.]

Afghan Taliban Threaten "Harsh Reprisals" if Pope Benedict Doesn't Stop Christian Conversions
The Taliban on Thursday threatened "harsh reprisals" if Pope Benedict XVI does not immediately intervene to stop Christians proselytising in Afghanistan. In a message posted on their official website, the Taliban made the threat against the pope and Christians for spreading their faith.

Jerusalem's Patriarch worried about papal visit
Catholic leader fears consequences from Jews, Muslims

Spain's bishops defend Pope against Congress
Legislature seeks to censure Benedict's condom remarks

Christian girl gang-raped, murdered in Pakistan
Nine-year-old dumped in canal, no one arrested
[The animals responsible for this should be shot with bullet soaked in pig's blood.]

Cardinal: no violence to achieve united Ireland
Says unification is 'legitimate and still noble ideal'

Celebrity priest punished for beach frolicking
Dozens of photos with woman published in magazine

Vatican Swiss Guards consider opening to women
New commander: 'I could imagine it for one job or another'

Maine latest state to legalize same-sex marriage
Poll: 54 percent of Americans are against such measures

Vision for Catholic college unswayed by recession
Ave Maria University vying for ugliest church award

Vatican breaks silence on 'Angels and Demons'
Editorials call film 'ephemeral' but 'alluring'

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Other Issues
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401(k)s Hit by Withdrawal Freezes
Investors Cry Foul as Some Funds Close Exits; Perils of Distressed Markets
[Another example of how the government crooks view the serf. They own all of you, and allow you to have what they decide you can have.]

Hidden By MSM: Life Long Dem. Attorney Slams Obama's Birth Certificate Eligibility (Video)
If Barry has nothing to hide, then why doesn't he produce the proof? Barack Obama has yet to comply to any fact check of his birth certificate. Pennsylvania attorney lays out the case against Obama's "natural born" qualifications. Birth certificate or not; his performance over his first 100 days has proven his lack of qualifications to be President.

Obama Budget Rescinds Oil, Gas Industry Tax Breaks
Chairman MaObama wants to end $26 billion in oil and gas industry tax breaks, calling them ''unjustifiable loopholes'' in the tax system that other companies do not get.
[The lying thug want Americans to pay $5.00/gallon for gas in addition to enslaving every "working" citizen with taxes...]

Hawaii Lawmakers Pass Bill to Create 'Islam Day'
Hawaii's state Senate overwhelmingly approved a bill Wednesday to celebrate "Islam Day" -- over the objections of a few lawmakers who said they didn't want to honor a religion connected to Sept. 11, 2001...
[Mohammed was a deranged satanic child molester...and those who honor this satanic religion are equally deranged and deluded and they walk in darkness.]

Criminals running the country!
Massachusetts welfare recipients provided cars at taxpayer expense...

House bypasses governor’s veto to claim Oklahoma’s sovereignty
Although Gov. Brad Henry vetoed similar legislation 10 days earlier, House members Monday again approved a resolution claiming Oklahoma’s sovereignty. Unlike House Joint Resolution 1003, House Concurrent Resolution 1028 does not need the governor’s approval. The House passed the measure 73-22. It now goes to the Senate.
[It's high time for states to withdraw from the "union" as the Federal government continues to destroy itself and the republic. Narcissistic Chairman Maobama and his crew of incompetents and thugs are hell bent on turning the US into a third world country.]

US public at risk from complacency over flu
ATLANTA, May 6 (Reuters) - The U.S. public could become more vulnerable to a flu pandemic if complacency about the need for heightened vigilance sets in, health experts said on Wednesday.

Gospel for Thursday, 4th Week of Easter

From: John 13:16-20

Jesus Washes His Disciples' Feet

(Jesus said to His disciples,) [16] "Truly, truly, I say to you, a servant is not greater than his master; nor is he who is sent greater than he who sent him. [17] If you know these things, blessed are you if you do them. [18] I am not speaking to you all; I know whom I have chosen; it is that the Scripture may be fulfilled, `He who ate my bread has lifted his heel against me.' [19] I tell you this now, before it takes place, that when it does take place you may believe that I am He. [20] Truly, truly, I say to you, he who receives any man whom I send receives Me; and he who receives Me receives Him who sent Me."
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Commentary:
15-17. Jesus' whole life was an example of service towards men, fulfilling His Father's will to the point of dying on the Cross. Here our Lord promises us that if we imitate Him, our Teacher, in disinterested service (which always implies sacrifice), we will find true happiness which no one can wrest from us (cf. 16:22; 17:13). "`I have given you an example', He tells His disciples after washing their feet, on the night of the Last Supper. Let us reject from our hearts any pride, any ambition, any desire to dominate; and peace and joy will reign around us and within us, as a consequence of our personal sacrifice" ([St] J. Escriva, "Christ Is Passing By", 94).

18. Lifting one's heel against someone means hitting him brutally; metaphorically, therefore, it means violent enmity. Judas' treachery fulfills the words of Psalm 41:10 where the psalmist complains bitterly of a friend's treachery. Once again the Old Testament prefigures events which find their full _expression in the New.

Through Baptism, the Christian has become a son of God and is called to share in God's good things, not only in Heaven but also on earth: He has received grace, he shares in the Eucharistic Banquet..., he shares with his brethren, other Christians, the friendship of Jesus. Therefore, if a person sins who has been born again through Baptism, in some sense his is a sort of treachery similar to Judas'. However, we have the recourse of repentance: if we trust in God's mercy we can set about recovering our friendship with God.

"React. Listen to what the Holy Spirit tells you: `"Si inimicus meus maledixisset mihi, sustinuissem utique"'. If it were the enemy who insulted me, I could put up with that. But you...`"tu vero homo unanimis, dux meus, et notus meus, qui simul mecum dulces capiebas cibos"': you, My friend, My Apostle, who sit at My table and take sweet food with Me!" ([St] J. Escriva, "The Way", 244).

19. Jesus tells the Apostles in advance about Judas' treachery, so that when they see Christ's predictions come true, they will realize He has divine knowledge and that in Him are fulfilled the Scriptures of the Old Testament (cf. John 2:22). On the words "I am", cf. note on John 8:21-24.
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Source: "The Navarre Bible: Text and Commentaries". Biblical text taken from the Revised Standard Version and New Vulgate. Commentaries made by members of the Faculty of Theology of the University of Navarre, Spain. Published by Four Courts Press, Kill Lane, Blackrock, Co. Dublin, Ireland. Reprinted with permission from Four Courts Press and Scepter Publishers, the U.S. publisher.

Principles and Practices - May 7

Jesus, Our Model

But what is the holiness which is proposed to Christians as a model? No other than that of God Himself: 'Be ye therefore perfect, as your Father in heaven is perfect': it is Our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ, it is God made Man, to teach us the way of holiness, who addresses these words to us. What do they really mean? Can we, in very deed, be holy as God is holy? No; it is impossible for us to be holy as He is, or even to approach His infinite perfection. But what­ever may be our holiness, it must be moulded upon His, which is the only source and the only pattern of all holiness.

-Father Jean Grou.
_________________
From Principles and Practices
Compiled by Rev. J. Hogan of The Catholic Missionary Society
Published by Burns Oates & Washbourne Ltd., Publishers To The Holy See
Nihil Obstat; Eduardus J. Mahoney, S.T.D. Censor deputatus.
Imprimatur; Edm. Can. Surmont, Vicarius generalis.
First printed in 1930

Thoughts of St Augustine for May 7

THEREFORE hath Mary chosen the better part, which shall not be taken from her. She wished to be occupied about one thing. She under­stood already, but it is good for us to cleave to the Lord. She sat at the feet of our Head. The more lowly she sat, the more amply did she receive. For the water flows together to the low hollows of the valley, runs down from the rising of the hill.
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Click here for more information.

From Thoughts of St Augustine for Every Day
by Kathleen Mary Balfe (© 1926)
Nihil Obstat: Georgius D. Smith, S.T.D
Imprimatur: Edm. Can. Surmont

Thoughts from St Alphonsus for Every Day-May 7

ALTHOUGH Mary is under an infinite obliga­tion to her Son for having chosen her to be his Mother, yet it cannot be denied that the Son is under great obligation to her for having given him his humanity.And therefore, Jesus, to pay as it were what he owes to Mary, honours her in a special manner by listening to and granting all her petitions.
_________________
From Thoughts from St Alphonsus for Every Day
Compiled by Rev. C. McNeiry, C.SS.R.
Imprimatur: Joseph Hull, C.SS.R., Prov. Angl. Sup.
Nihil Obstat: Innocentlus Apap, O.P., S.T.M., Censor Deptutatus.
Imprimatur: Edm. Can. Surmont, Vicarius Generalis.
Westmonasterii, Die 9a Junii, 1927.
First published 1927

May 7 & 8-National Catholic Prayer Breakfast w/ Abp Burke and Scalia

Featuring as keynote speaker His Excellency, Archbishop Emeritus of St. Louis, Raymond L. Burke, who serves as the Prefect of the Apostolic Signatura and President of the Commission for Advocates.

And special guest speaker is The Honorable Antonin Scalia, Associate Justice of the United States Supreme Court.

Would be a great event to attend.

More info available here.

Forgive Us Our Trespasses

by Alan Keyes

Worth repeating - again and again:
==================
[FYI: This past weekend Fox news reported the arrest of Randall Terry as he protested against Notre Dame's invitation and honorary degree for Barack Obama. (See Notre Dame: Promoting the Glamour of Evil, and An Open Letter to Father Jenkins.) According to the report "Terry was taken to the St. Joseph County Jail on criminal trespass charges." He has since been released after posting a bond. In light of this occurrence, I feel bound in conscience to make the following statement, commitment and call to all who labor in defense of the God given and unalienable right to life.]

With the arrest of pro-life servant Randall Terry, Father Jenkins and the University administration at Notre Dame take their adulation of evil to a new level of spiritual atrocity.

In a little less than two weeks they will welcome to the university campus a man who represents the most abominable and extreme commitment ever known in US politics to destroying the God given right to life of innocent human offspring. With their actions and the "honor" they confer upon Obama, they will actively promote the lie that it is possible to dishonor God blatantly and unashamedly, yet be somehow "honorable" in the eyes of those who profess faith in Jesus Christ.

Christ said
31 When the Son of man shall come in his glory, and all the holy angels with him, then shall he sit upon the throne of his glory: 32 And before him shall be gathered all nations: and he shall separate them one from another, as a shepherd divideth his sheep from the goats: 33 And he shall set the sheep on his right hand, but the goats on the left. 34 Then shall the King say unto them on his right hand, Come, ye blessed of my Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world: 35 For I was an hungred, and ye gave me meat: I was thirsty, and ye gave me drink: I was a stranger, and ye took me in: 36 Naked, and ye clothed me: I was sick, and ye visited me: I was in prison, and ye came unto me. 37 Then shall the righteous answer him, saying, Lord, when saw we thee an hungred, and fed thee? or thirsty, and gave thee drink? 38 When saw we thee a stranger, and took thee in? or naked, and clothed thee? 39 Or when saw we thee sick, or in prison, and came unto thee? 40 And the King shall answer and say unto them, Verily I say unto you, Inasmuch as ye have done it unto one of the least of these my brethren, ye have done it unto me. (Matthew 25:31-40)
These words must ring in the ears of faithful Christians as they consider the grim reality of abortion. Every time abortionists rip a child limb from limb within the womb; every time they crush crush an infant's fragile head; every time they have scorched the life from its body with a death dealing chemical solution; every time they scrape its nascent cells of life from the walls of a womb - Jesus is savagely beaten again; his skull pressed down with thorns; his limbs pulled recklessly in their sockets; his hands and feet pierced through with nails; his breaths infused with fiery pain; his life finally extinguished; every time.

And every time there stands vociferous in the taunting crowd, the ambitious man of blood, Barack Obama. He is crying aloud, "Let Him be crucified." He is justifying the torture, forcing bystanders to aid in the atrocity, assuring that the nails are paid for and the henchmen of evil well fed and rewarded for their role in the daily crucifixion. Even the garments of the innocent children (their little organs or their stem cells), like the vesture of Christ, he prepares for division among those who perpetrate the slaughter.

All his life Randall Terry, seeing this passion play of evil repeated over and over again in our day, has born witness bravely and shamelessly against it. On the day of crucifixion, Christ endures the punishment reserved for infamous rebels and criminals. Fearing that they too would be treated as criminals, Peter and most of the other disciples run and hide. So too do many of us today. Though we profess to believe that abortion breaks God's fundamental law, we will not stand boldly with Jesus as he endures humiliating injustice. We fear for ourselves and shrink from association with the bloody and terrible images of torture and death. But through the years Randall Terry, and those who share his lion's heart for justice, have stood with the Mother of our Lord at the foot of the Cross. They have been sprinkled with the blood and water that gushed from his wounded side. They have received from the pierced and bleeding hand of our Dying Lord, the Blessed Gift by which he made his Mother Our Lady (Notre Dame), the mother of all the faithful ones who endure with Him to the end, receiving His crown of pain, which is also the crown of life.

Instead of cringing inwardly at Randall Terry's bold willingness to be arrested for bearing witness to God's truth, those who understand the gift of Christ's words and example must be moved to imitate his boldness. Tragically, ironically, a supposedly Catholic university and its administration have stepped forward to be the Bull Connors of this era's most clear and pressing battle for God given human rights. They have declared it an offense peacefully to demonstrate the evil of abortion. They have declared it an offense, prayerfully to bear witness to truth on a campus supposedly guided by and subordinate to that truth. Though it is an offense to them, it is a duty to Truth, and to Christ and to God. Wherever there are faithful hearts drawn to do this duty, they must feel now the vocation to join Randall Terry in defiance of this intimidation. I will join him. I ask others who all these years have prayed and labored for the unborn to join us. I know you are there. I have broken bread with you at dinners for crisis pregnancy centers and right to life groups. I have marched with you to proclaim the sanctity of innocent life, and decry the laws that sanction its destruction. I have been uplifted by your faith, your perseverance, your love of God and His son. The forces of evil mean to lay final claim to a place supposed to be within the precincts of our God and Lord. Come what may, we must come forth now to occupy and hold it against them.

I will go to South Bend. I will step foot on the Notre Dame campus to lift up the standard that protects the life of the innocent children of this and every generation. I will do it all day and every day until, if it be God's will, shame and the love of Christ overcome the university administration's vain craving for iniquitous "honor". I will do it though it means I shall be housed every day in the prison house of lies and injustice that Obama, Jenkins and their minions now mean to construct for those who will never be still and silent in the face of their mockery of God and justice, their celebration of evil.

If this be trespass, then forgive us our trespasses and join us in trespassing until the South Bend jail is filled to overflowing with witnesses to truth; filled beyond capacity; filled until we break the most onerous shackles of all- the ones that bind the heart and mind to evil and our nation to the path of its moral and spiritual destruction.
==============
Source.

Tuesday, May 05, 2009

News Updates, 5/6

Fr. Chris Carpenter Excommunicated in Diocese of Phoenix, Arizona
Fr. Chris Carpenter is now called by some the “Chancellor of the Diocese of St Joseph the Worker in Southern California”. Only he is no longer allowed to hold himself out as a Roman Catholic Priest. He separated himself from the Catholic Church and incurred the penalty of excommunication. That has now been formally recognized by an official decree. However, Chris Carpenter still calls himself a priest. Only now he claims to be a priest for the so called “Reformed catholic church.”

Pope: "Non-Negotiable Human Rights" include "Right to Life and Right to Freedom of Conscience"
Pope Benedict XVI addressed members of the Pontifical Academy of Social Sciences yesterday at their plenary session which is focused on the theme of Catholic social teaching and human rights, and called for the promotion of universal human rights based on both faith and reason, affirming the "right to life and the right to freedom of conscience and religion as being at the center of those rights that spring from human nature itself."
[Has anyone passed this on to Chairman Maobama and the pseudo-Catholic brownshirts in Congress?]

A brisk Sacramento welcome
Legislators fall over themselves to speak at Planned Parenthood rally, Catholic counterparts get less enthusiastic welcome in competing ‘lobby days’

Pope Benedict to skip Israeli Holocaust Museum
Display questions role of war-time Pope Pius XII

Vatican denies Pope Iraq-visit reports
May 8-15 trip includes Jordan, Israel and Palestine

Church calls on Berlusconi to be more 'sober'
Says Italian PM is a 'mirror of the country's soul'

Jesuit university to honor S African condom bishop
Kevin Dowling has slammed abstinence-only programs

Five Catholic schools close over swine flu threat
In Texas alone 799 schools are closed today

Ave Maria numbers far short of heavenly
Catholic city in Florida hit by economic downturn

Scientists growing transplant organs in sheep
New technology promises new source of organs

Israel's Hebrew Catholics keep the faith
Vicariate established in 1955 by group of convert Jews

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Other Issues
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WHO says H1N1 pigs must be kept out of food supply
* WHO expert says flu viruses can survive freezing
* Blood of H1N1 infected pigs may also contain virus
* Meat from sick pigs or pigs found dead must not be eaten
* Existing food safety, trade checks offer ample protection

The Obama Birth Certificate
Under Hawaiian law, it is possible (both legally and illegally) for a person to have been born out of state, yet have a birth certificate on file in the Department of Health. Somehow, you know it’s coming. That OMG moment is just around the corner. You can feel the inescapable reality creeping up on you. Something will leak. Someone will spill the beans...

Chairman Maobama to be Prayer Day no-show
Pres__ent [ID missing] Obama is distancing himself from the National Day of Prayer by nixing a formal early morning service and not attending a large Catholic prayer breakfast the next morning....
[He's not yet ready to show the world that he worships at the feet of his father, Satan! what a thug punk!]

124 Congressman Demand Audit of Federal Reserve
A bill calling for the comptroller general of the United States to audit the private Federal Reserve is gaining widespread support in Congress, as 124 representatives have added their names to its growing list of co-sponsors....

We already knew this would happen!
Chrysler won't repay bailout money
An administration official confirms that a $4 billion bridge loan and $3.2 billion in bankruptcy financing won't be paid back by Chrysler following bankruptcy....
[As long as the UAW is protected at taxpayer expense, we should all be happy, yes? What a bunch of thieving criminals!]

Team Obama May Seek Disbarment of Bush Lawyers...
An internal Justice Department inquiry into the conduct of Bush administration lawyers who wrote secret memorandums authorizing brutal interrogations has concluded that the authors committed serious lapses of judgment but should not be criminally prosecuted, according to government officials briefed on a draft of the findings...

Weiss: The Next Mammoth Failures
Just in the past few days, the United States has moved dramatically closer to the final fork in the road that I set forth in my online video of April 7th: Either a prolonged, agonizing depression that dooms our country to decades of stagnation, decline, and poverty … or a painful-but-shorter depression that paves the way for a wholesome, sustainable recovery.

Chairman Maobama Hints at Tougher Line on Israel
The Obama Administration has signalled a tougher approach towards Israel ahead of fresh talks on the Middle East peace process by insisting it must endorse the creation of an independent Palestinian state.

Kalifornia Income Tax Revenue Drops 44%
For the full month of April, income tax receipts were $7.336B. For April 2008, the total was $12.995B. This is a 44% decline. The fiscal YTD is down 20%.

Bernanke likely to give less dour take on economy
[Not really news...When he tells the truth - THAT will be news!]

GM Is Officially Wiping Out Common Shareholders
In a filing today with the SEC, GM announced that it would issue 60 billion new shares, in order to "pay off" debts to the government, its bondholders and the UAW. And since the government would end up being the majority owner, only the approval of the US Treasury would be needed (talk about a gating factor).

AIG bonuses four times higher
AIG now says it paid out more than $454 million in bonuses to its employees for work performed in 2008...That is nearly four times more than the company revealed in late March when asked by POLITICO to detail its total bonus payments....

Senate Democrats Deny Turncoat Arlen Specter Committee Seniority
The Senate dealt a blow tonight to Sen. Arlen Specter's hold on seniority in several key committees, a week after the Pennsylvanian's party switch placed Democrats on the precipice of a 60-seat majority....
[There is no honor among thieves and reprobates]