Is Anybody There?

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Not by might, nor by power, but by my Spirit,' says Yahweh Sabaoth" Zach 4:6 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Dio di Signore, nella Sua volontà è nostra pace!" . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . They that can give up essential liberty to obtain a little temporary safety deserve neither liberty nor safety." Ben Franklin 1759

Thursday, April 30, 2009

What This Is Doing To Jesus

"During My bitter Passion they tore at My Body and Heart; that is, My Church."
(Taken from the prayer for the 5th day of the Divine Mercy Novena Jesus asked St. Faustina to pray. The term used by Jesus to describe the group she was to pray for on this day was "heretics and schismatics".)

The above picture is from the latest dress up fantasy by the Poncho Ladies aka Roman Catholic Womenpriests USA. On 19 April 2009 they went through the motions of the Roman Rite ordination of Bishops. I say motions because all their were doing was play acting. For a sacrament to be valid there are 2 things required, the proper form & the proper matter. & this doesn't meet them. I can't speak on how faithful to the form it was (the prayer of ordination), not being there (Ringrazi il dio!) However, I can guarentee you that despite their fantasies to the contrary, the fact that they are all missing a Y chromosome makes validity impossible. Whoever the ordaining Bishop may have been (real or not), since he (assuming it was a validly ordained bishop) didn't lay hands on a man, the matter was not proper in any way, shape or form.
& as a reminder, on 29 May 2008, the Vatican declared that any women who attempt “ordination” or any bishops who attempt to “ordain” women are automatically excommunicated from the Church by their actions. The decree from the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith was absolute, universal and immediately effective.
& should they ever decide to rejoin the Catholic Church, they will have to renounce any claims that they were validly or licitly ordained. Or to put it in plain English, they will have to admit they were play acting in what was a blasphemous farce.
Photo source H/T: LarryD @ Acts of the Apostasy (Impersonators )

Magadan Update - April 2009

The other day I received my latest issue of the Mission to Magadan newsletter.I always look forward to the latest copy. This issue had an article in it by Fr. Mike Shields that was originally printed in the 6 March 2009 issue of The Catholic Anchor (Archdiocese of Anchorage). Rather than try & summarize it, I'll let Father Shields speak for himself:
God sent me to the gulags to get my attention
By Fr. Mike Shields
A good close priest friend recently asked, “What have I learned in Russia?”
Here is my answer.
I have learned to be a true spiritual father in Russia. I have fallen in love with the cross of Jesus in Russia. I have learned to be quiet and let God speak to me in Russia. I have learned to love Jesus in the Blessed Sacrament. I have learned to love, and pray to Our Lady in Russia. I have learned about the spiritual battle in Russia.
I learned Satan is real and wants to destroy me, the church, fatherhood and motherhood. The family is a favorite area of his attack and yet families keep struggling to be families.
I have learned to love my weaknesses and depend on God. I have learned that my strengths can also lead me away from God. I have learned I can be too independent and live as if God is my helper not my savior. I have learned about real evil that destroys souls and real good that reveals God’s face in another, especially in the poor and broken.
I have learned to hope when it seems hopeless; to love when I don’t feel like it; to forgive when I don’t want to and I am right. I have learned my faith is weak and still miracles happen all the time around me.
I have learned that people can’t be trusted, but I still trust them. I have learned to embrace the cross and love the Eucharist, which is the salvation of the cross, given to us to eat. I have learned falling isn’t the hard part; it is having enough humility to get up again and start over.
I have learned the sacrament of confession is one of my greatest joys to receive and to give. I have learned that I love poorly and God loves perfectly. But above all I have learned what it means to be a priest. I have learned to really be His priest.
What is a priest? What do you think is most important to us priests? I want to give you my definition. (John 15: 15-17) A priest is a friend of Jesus. It seems too simple, doesn’t it?
A priest is a friend of Jesus. But ask yourself what is most important for us priests? I think most important is to have a deep, loving, honest and open relationship with our savior Jesus Christ, who is also our brother priest. Everything changes when we have this deep friendship with Jesus. But if we don’t have a personal, deep friendship, it is a dead definition. And so is priesthood. Pope Benedict XVI spoke in 2006:
“And only when God is seen does life truly begin. Only when we meet the living God in Christ do we know what life is. We are not some casual and meaningless product of evolution. Each of us is the result of a thought of God. Each of us is willed, each of us is loved, each of us is necessary. There is nothing more beautiful than to be surprised by the Gospel, by the encounter with Christ. There is nothing more beautiful than to know Him and to speak to others of our friendship with Him.”
What have I learned here in Russia? God is a marvelous God who loves and loves and loves. Maybe these truths are for everyone to learn? All I know is that God sent me to the gulags to get my attention and I am so very thankful.

The writer is pastor of the Church of the Nativity in Magadan, Russia. The church is a mission of the Archdiocese of Anchorage.
& while I am sure the details are going to appear in a future issue, I want to share something that originally was reported by Zenit:
Russian government wants to see more births
MAGADAN, Russia, — Plans are under way to open three pro-life centers for women contemplating abortion in Russia.
Aid to the Church in Need reported that the Russian authorities — traditionally pro-abortion since the Soviet years — have changed their stance. State doctors are backing these advice centers due to concerns about the country’s low birthrate and changing demographics.
Father Michael Shields plans to open the first center in June in the east Siberian town of Magadan, historically known for the Soviet gulag camps.
It will give him and his volunteers the opportunity to work with women at the moment they confirm a pregnancy and begin contemplating their options.
Father Shields, a priest from the Archdiocese of Anchorage, has served as pastor of the Church of the Nativity in Magadan since 1994 with the blessing and support of the Anchorage Archdiocese.
In regards to his most recent work with pregnant women, Father Shields told Aid to the Church in Need, “What is amazing is that the state doctor who works at the Women’s Consultation Center in Magadan approached us to see if we would be willing to develop a project there.”
Father Shields said, “It has been wonderful because Russia is really turning a corner and wants to see more births.”
He added, “The Russian government knows that the country’s demographics do not look good and that’s why the birthing doctors have asked us to work with and encourage pregnant mothers.”
Father Shields began his outreach to struggling women and children in Ola, a nearby village, where he opened Nativity Inn to provide short-term housing for newborn babies and their parents. Women who moved to the area for studies were often dismissed from college dormitories when they were discovered pregnant, and the priest began the inn as an outreach to them.
Success at the Nativity Inn won support and opened doors for the pro-life centers. He underlined the ecumenical significance of the venture, as the Russian Orthodox Church has also pledged its pro-life support.
Father Shields reported: “What has surprised us is how much the Nativity Inn project and our center at the Church in Magadan have grown through word of mouth.
“We find again and again that women come along having heard about us from other women in the same situation.”
He noted, “We hold regular meetings for women on our programs and it is really beautiful to see how good they are with children. This is remarkable when you think that they almost certainly didn’t have very good childhoods with poor parenting.”
I have been sharing news from Magadan for quite a while now. I do it for 2 reasons. 1st of all, to share the good news of how God is working there. I 1st heard about it on Fr. Groeschel's show on EWTN. Here was a ministry I knew I could support because of what it was doing. Fr. Groeschel's strong suggestion to support it didn't hurt either. I saw an opportunity to support a Pro-Life ministry. & it is also a prime example of how Pro-Life isn't merely about stopping abortion. It is about helping the mother, the father (when there), & the child. Magadan also serves those who were prisoners in the gulag at Magadan as well. Again Pro-Life. & there is also the evangelical aspect. What they are doing there needs to get out.
Which leads to the 2nd reason for these posts, a blatant plug (unsolicited) for the Mission in order to help raise money for this important ministry.
1st of all, unless you are in Russia sending money or checks directly to Magadan will do no good. Donations need to go through the Archdiocese of Anchorage that sponsors the mission.
Donations need to sent to:
Archdiocese of Anchorage
Mission to Magadan
225 Cordova St.
Anchorage AK 99501-2409
The Mission website has info on how to mail packages directly to the Mission, including dealing with customs. The declared value has to be less than $90 US or they will have to pay a fee.
There is also an organization in St. Louis MO, Friends of Nativity Inn, that supports the work at Magadan.
As I said, Pro-Life is not merely putting an end to abortion. It includes so much of what is going on at Magadan. Please consider giving something to help this wonderful work.


Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) Rejects Gay Clergy

Barely. But the article does raise a question. How long before they follow the same disasterous road the Episcopal Church has? Given the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) [PCUSA] stand on homosexuality it is only a matter of time. Then watch a similar exodus to that we are seeing in the Episcopal Church.
I know that there has already been local churches that have split from the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) for other branches of Prebyterianism that are more faithful to traditional Christian dogma. 1 of those is here in DBQ. A few years ago 3rd Presbyterian voted to leave the PCUSA & affiliate with the Evangelical Presbyterian Church (EPC) instead. 3rd Pres was called that because it was the 3rd Presbyterian Church to open in DBQ. Some friends of mine who belong told me that the name change to GracePoint came about at the insistance of the PCUSA.
FYI: The EPC is Pro-Life. The PCUSA says that "The considered decision of a woman to terminate a pregnancy can be a morally acceptable, though certainly not the only or required, decision." I won't go into the whole set of contortions it does to justify that stand that, despite the PCUSA claims to the contrary, is pro-abortion.
What I see happenning is what is has occured with the Episcopal Church, there will be an influx into the Catholic Church because it has the fullness of truth. & always will, despite the efforts of some groups to get it go the way the PCUSA & Episcopal Churchs have. Something tells me that as the PCUSA goes further down the road it is on The Coming Home Network will be seeing an increase in activity. Esp since the President and Founder of CHNI, Marcus Grodi, was himself a Presbyterian.

Presbyterian Church gay clergy bid gains, but is voted down again
The margin of defeat is guaranteed to be narrower than in recent years' balloting on the measure to allow gays and lesbians to serve as Presbyterian Church (U.S.A) clergy.

Associated Press
April 26, 2009
Efforts to allow gays and lesbians to serve as clergy in the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) have been defeated again, sealed by votes tallied Saturday.But the margin of defeat -- the final tally has yet to be determined -- is guaranteed to be closer than in previous years. That is encouraging for supporters of gay clergy and cause for concern for opponents, with both sides expecting the issue to be revisited.
Last summer, the General Assembly of the 2.3-million-member denomination voted to drop a constitutional requirement that would-be ministers, deacons and elders live in "fidelity within the covenant of marriage between a man and a woman, or chastity in singleness."Any such change requires approval by a majority of the nation's 173 presbyteries, or regional church bodies. Those votes have been trickling in for months. On Saturday enough "no" votes had been recorded to clinch the measure's defeat.At least two presbyteries -- Northern Plains, which covers North Dakota and part of Minnesota; and Boise, which covers the Idaho capital -- voted against the amendment Saturday, said activist groups and an independent Presbyterian website,
Before Saturday, the total was 68 presbyteries for and 86 opposed, one shy of the margin needed for defeat, according to Presbyterian News Service, the denomination's press arm.

The Real Root Causes of 3rd World Poverty

Are the Rich to Blame for Poverty?
Missionary Discusses Causes of Underdevelopment
By Father Piero Gheddo
ROME, APRIL 26, 2009 ( The radical causes of poverty are not colonization, or the multi-nationals or the egoism of rich countries. Although the rich of the world bear so much responsibility and culpability, they are not at the root of the poverty of poor peoples.
It makes me sad when I read in books and magazines not phrase "impoverished peoples" in the place of "poor peoples." And the explanation given is that, prior to the encounter with Western colonization, for example, the African peoples and the Amazonian Indians lived a natural, happy, peaceful and community life. However, it is an ideological vision altogether contrary to the historical reality.
Suffice it to read the biographies of the first missionaries who came into contact with these peoples even before the colonial intervention. For example, PIME missionaries went to eastern Burma [now Myanmar] in 1868, and English colonization in those regions inhabited by tribal peoples -- who lived in the Stone Age (iron was unknown to them) -- began toward the end of the 19th century.
In fact, the missionaries wrote that the tribes were constantly at war among themselves, and described their life as inhumane, slightly above that of animals, in addition to being "impoverished." The tribal peoples of Burma developed precisely through the action of the missionaries, who brought peace, taught them how to work and cultivate rice-fields -- previously they were nomads -- opened roads and schools, brought in modern medicine, studied their languages and compiled dictionaries, gathered proverbs and narratives from them and so on.
In 2001, the "non-globalists" coined an effective slogan for the Group of Eight meeting in Genoa: "We are rich because they are poor and they are poor because we are rich." I always say that the poor are not helped by telling lies.
Akin to the other slogan: "Ten percent of the world population consumes 90% of the resources, and 90% of men consume only 10% of the available resources." This must be corrected to read: "Ten percent of men produce and consume 90% of the resources, and 90% of men produce and consume 10% of the resources."
The root of the problem is that first one must produce if one is to consume: One consumes if one produces, and in poor countries not enough is produced to maintain the rate of growth of the population.
Africa increased from 300 million inhabitants in 1960 to more than 800 million today, but basic agriculture is still to a large extent at the level of colonial times. Some "catastrophists" say that there are too many men to be able to surmount famine. It's not true.
Japan, which has 342 inhabitants per square kilometer (Italy has 194), and has one of the highest densities of population in the world in a wholly mountainous country (only 19% of the territory is cultivable), and a difficult climate, is self-sufficient in the basic food it consumes, namely rice.
Famine does not come from too many men and women, but from the fact that they are not taught how to produce more, beyond the level of pure sustenance.
However, in the West this is not acknowledged because it calls into question our true responsibility, which is not just helping finance poor countries and paying a just price for their raw materials (this is also true, but it is not first and foremost). Our responsibility is to contribute to their education so they become self-sufficient, first of all in the production of food and then of all the rest.
The distance between the rich and the poor in the world is not above all an economic fact, but a cultural-political one. In Europe, after centuries of slow progress toward modern industry and agriculture, we have arrived at having the technology, the capacity, the entrepreneurial and work mentality (in addition to democracy and the free market) to produce. Whereas at the end of the 1800s and the beginning of the 1900s, many peoples of the global South passed from pre-history -- that is, absence of written languages -- to modernity in one century, with two World Wars in between!
In situations such as this, it is superfluous to say that they have great human values, that they are young, intelligent and affable, full of good will. Even I know these things very well, but the cultural leap from pre-history to the computer and airplanes can be absorbed in part by some individuals in the technical sense, but not in the cultural sense.
The popular masses use mobile phones and television, but the head, the habits, the customs of life, the underlying mentality have remained more or less in the past. Religious faiths and cultures cannot change rapidly; time is needed.
This is the story that I hear most often repeated by missionaries who live their life with poor people, something which is still not understood in the West and, what is more, there is no desire to admit it.
In December 2007 I was in Cameroon, one of the model countries of Africa south of the Sahara: large enough to contain Italy one and a half times, with 18 million inhabitants, politically stable, without wars or civil strife, with an acceptable form of democracy and liberty. Annual economic growth equals 2%-3% of GDP. Average income per capita is US$800 a year, when in many African countries it varies from US$100 to US$300 (Italy is just under US$30,000). Foreign debt is virtually nonexistent, a few tens of millions.
Fine, but the fact is that Cameroon produces little if anything in the industrial area. It has no real industry, only cement works, textile production and sugar, beer and cigarettes, ginning of cotton and little else. It imports almost all modern goods, including lamps and refrigerators, exporting natural riches (oil, various minerals, wood) and agricultural products. And economic growth without industry is not possible.
The second cancer of Cameroon is state corruption at the political and administrative level. In the list of the most corrupt countries of the world drawn up by the United Nations, Cameroon always places at the top; in 2007, in fact, it placed first. It is not the specific fault of this or that head of state or administrator; it is a custom that stems from the mentality: When one has power one must think first of all of one's ethnic group, tribe, village and family.
It is a widespread cancer throughout Africa -- and not just in the latter, of course -- which very much halts development, because the aid and grants received from the United Nations or from other states ends up almost totally in the pockets of those who hold power.
And, I repeat, this is true for high-level government officials and administrators, the military, etc., but also for anyone who has some power over others. There are exceptions, of course, but the bad custom that everyone speaks about is this. These are the real roots of underdevelopment.
Development is not only a technical and economic event, but stems above all from culture, from education: It is the work of individuals and not of money, it comes from people and not from machines, it is born through education, which is, however, a long, patient process, not accomplished by emergency interventions, but by living together with a people.
We Westerners do very little for the education of poor peoples, and we never hear of the role of cultural and religious values that lead to development: It is a topic that is ignored by the mass media and the Western "experts" that favor economic and technical aid.
[Translation by ZENIT]
--- --- ---
Father Piero Gheddo, is currently director of Mondo e Missione and of Italia Missionaria, and is the founder of AsiaNews. Since 1994, he is the director of PIME's historical office and postulator of several causes of canonization. He teaches in PIME's pre-theological seminary in Rome. He is the author of more than 70 books.

But, I Thought You Said Legalized Abortion Would Reduce Domestic Violence

(Follow the link at the end of the article to see what it does to your sex life)

By Hilary White
April 20, 2009 ( - When a woman gets an abortion, the couple is more than twice as likely to argue when discussing future children, and nearly three times as likely to experience domestic violence, compared with women who carry the pregnancy to term and raise the child, according to a study published in the peer-reviewed journal Public Health on Mar. 24.
"Abortion may play a vital role in understanding the aetiology [cause] of relationship problems," the authors stated. The study said that abortion within a current relationship causes 116% more arguing when discussing future children, and 196% more domestic violence.
The researchers found that abortion affected future relationships as well.
"For both men and women the experience of an abortion in a previous relationship was related to negative outcomes in the current relationship," they wrote.
"Men whose current partners had an abortion were more likely to report jealousy (96% greater risk) and conflict about drugs (385% greater risk). "These results suggest that abortion may play a vital role in understanding the aetiology of some relationship problems," the study's authors wrote.
Dr. Priscilla Coleman, a professor of Human Development and Family Studies at Bowling Green State University headed up the study with Vincent Rue of the Florida-based Institute for Pregnancy Loss and post-abortion researcher Catherine Coyle.
The study's findings support previous research that has found higher rates of substance abuse, serious depression and suicide after abortion. In March 2008, Britain's Royal College of Psychiatrists issued a statement calling for better screening and informed consent before women undergo an abortion. The statement said that the College had undertaken a review of existing research and found that a "full systematic review around abortion and mental health is required."
In 2005, research conducted in Finland found that aborting women were 3.5 times more likely to die within the next year compared to women who gave birth.
Read related coverage:
Abortion Kills Your Sex Life Says UK Doctor in Times Column

Wednesday, April 29, 2009

To Dream The Improbable Dream (At Least in the Short Run)

Iranian president Mahmoud Ahmadinejad calls Rush Limbaugh and tells him, "Rush, I had a wonderful dream last night. I could see America, the whole country, and on each house I saw a banner."
"What did it say on the banners?" Rush asks.
Mahmoud replies, "UNITED STATES OF IRAN."
Rush says, "You know, Mahmoud, I am really happy you called, because believe it or not, last night I had a similar dream. I could see all of Tehran, and it was more beautiful than ever, and on each house flew an enormous banner."
"What did it say on the banners?" Mahmoud asks.
Rush replies, "I don't know. I can't read Hebrew."
Source: Patriot Post

California Man Adopts Children Wife Aborted

This has definitely got to be a 1st. The heart of the story is the emotional & psychological damage done to Lisa Musil. The damage that those who promote abortion say doesn't exist. It is also a story of love, of forgiveness & healing.
There is 1 problem I have with the Fox version of the story. Instead of calling them 'aborted children" as the original story did, they changed the term to fetuses. While technically correct, using fetus doesn't quite express the same level of horror about what abortion does, killing a child. It softens that horror instead of giving it the full expression of evil that "aborted children" does.

California man has signed papers to symbolically "adopt" and give his last name to his wife's two aborted fetuses.
Stan Musil said he filed the posthumous "adoption" on Monday as a way to support his wife, Lisa, and help her heal from the pain of having those abortions, Lisa Musil told
"He told me 'I love you and you are a part of me. Your babies are a part of you, and so that makes them a part of me also,'" she said.
Musil, now 45, had her first abortion at 19 because she was too frightened to admit her pregnancy to anyone — including her then live-in boyfriend, the Assist News Service reported.
But terminating the pregnancy caused her so much pain that she tried to cover it with "drugs, alcohol, partying and a promiscuous lifestyle," she told radio host Rich Buhler in an interview with KBRT AM-740.
That lifestyle led to her second pregnancy — and subsequent abortion — just before she was due to serve a jail sentence for a drunken driving conviction, ANS reported.
"The world tells me that it was only a blob of tissue, but my heart tells me otherwise," Musil told by e-mail. "The grief often times was more than I could bear."
To try to cope with that pain, Lisa Musil turned her efforts to honoring those who have gone through abortions.
"It’s been a desire of mine to establish a memorial where post-abortive women can go to have the names of their aborted children engraved to honor their remembrance," she said. "As this is coming to fruition, I was wondering what last name I would put on this memorial, and my sweet husband asked if we could find some way he could legally adopt my babies and then they could take his name."
Upon hearing about Stan's idea, Buhler put the Musil's in contact with adoption law expert and NightLite Christian Adoptions Executive Director Rod Stoddart.
"I explained that it's not possible from a legal standpoint, because there's no birth certificate and no child living now to be adopted," Stoddart told "But from an emotional standpoint, there's no reason why we could not do an agreement between them where he would adopt those children and give them his name."
Stoddart drafted paperwork that reflected the Musils' desire for the adoption before each other, God and witnesses, which the couple signed on Buhler's radio show.
Stoddart said he's since received several requests from other couples looking to do the same.
"I feel it's given them a lot of comfort. It's something they're in together now," Stoddart said.
When the intended memorial is erected at Pierce Brothers Crestlawn Memorial Park in Riverside, Calif., it will include the names the Musils gave the aborted fetuses — Alicia Anne Musil and Vincent Matthew Musil.
Click here for more on this story from the Assist News Service.'s Diane Macedo contributed to this report

Labels Won't Stop Us From Speaking Up

So Label Me "Extremist"!
By Gina Giacopuzzi
I sat in church today and listened to one of the most beautiful women in America talk about her decision, made just one week ago, to become one of the most ostracized and criticized women in America. Rather than the regular sermon from Pastor Miles MacPherson, who is a celebrity for his former career in the NFL and his current church following of over 10,000 people, I listened to this girl who was vaulted to celebrity in a much different way.
Carrie Prejean, who was Miss California and also runner-up for Miss America one week ago, also happens to go to my church. In the final round of competition, gossip blogger Perez Hilton asked her about her beliefs on gay marriage. Prejean, with a glittering smile, said, "I believe marriage should be between a man and a woman." With that simple comment, she lost the competition and won more attention than the winner herself.
Prejean talked today about that split-second decision she made, and how she felt more alone than ever before. Her statement attracted a maelstrom of criticism from the gay community and touched off a debate over whether one could express one's opinion if that opinion happened to be politically incorrect. She was immediately flown to New York to appear on the O'Reilly Factor, the Today Show, and pretty much every primetime news broadcast. The Miss California Organization prepped her on what to say, asking her to apologize and retract her statement. Prejean chose instead to defend her beliefs on national TV.
Earlier this month, on April 7, the U.S. Department of Homeland Security released a report on domestic terrorism that labeled pro-life supporters as "extremist" and a possible terrorist threat. DHS secretary Janet Napolitano defended the report, saying, "at the very edge of the [abortion] debate, at the very edge are the extremist groups that have committed violent crimes."Pro-lifers' constitutionally-held right to defend the unborn, and moral obligation to speak up for those who cannot speak for themselves, is now being filed in the same category as those who mail envelopes of anthrax and set off pipe bombs in subways.
The report is a drastic departure from U.S. judicial policy over the last 30 years. Free speech rights, and the protection of the First Amendment, have been routinely upheld by the Supreme Court, especially when it comes to political speech.
In defending our rights to free speech, pro-lifers have avenues for recourse, all of which justify the Congressional hearings that some opponents of the DHS report are calling for.
To begin with, the First Amendment is pretty straightforward. "Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances." That's it.
In interpreting the First Amendment's Free Speech Clause, the Supreme Court has continually found that protected speech includes everything from obscenity to "fighting words". It has made every effort to prohibit governmental interference in the content of a message, or laws so vague that citizens would be tempted to keep quiet out of fear-exactly the type of laws that may result from the DHS's report. The Supreme Court has set a progressively more restricted definition in what qualifies as hate speech and unprotected speech. It has also ruled that government can only prosecute political dissidents or socially disruptive speech when the expression is intended to incite imminent lawless activity and is likely to do so.
Excuse me, but the priest standing outside the abortion clinic with his Bible is not anywhere near inciting lawless activity. Neither, for that matter, are the young men and women of Survivors who hold signs on street corners, outside political events, or in organized rallies. Granted, these performances sometimes raise emotions (and voices) in bystanders or counter protesters. Yet, even inflammatory messages are constitutionally protected. The Supreme Court found that the mere threats of "hecklers' vetoes" (disorder threatened by counterdemonstrators) should not hold free speech hostage. Intentionally provocative speech cannot be blameworthy for reactions (Edwards v. South Carolina, 1963).
It is ridiculous enough that merely stating the belief that unborn children are human beings could be filed under "intentionally provocative speech." But even if it were, it would be protected by the Constitution and 200-plus years of judicial opinions that defend even flag burning and obscenities-including the obscenities that Perez Hilton hurled at Prejean earlier this week for stating her opinion.
As I sat in church today, I thought about how easy it would have been for Prejean to give a non-answer to Hilton's question. It would be so easy for pro-lifers to back off, to let the DHS report slide. Thankfully, while the Survivors are battling it out on the street, the American Center for Law and Justice and several pro-life Congressional representatives are calling for a retraction of the DHS report and Congressional hearings to investigate the source of it. "
The DHS report represents at the very least-- bad judgment-- and at worst-- an Administration-backed effort to intimidate and silence pro-life supporters," said Jay Sekulow, Chief Counsel of the ACLJ in a statement.
Hilton's criticism, the loss of the Miss America crown, and the backlash from the gay community have not silenced Prejean. She has chosen to stand for her beliefs, even if doing so makes her a target. She knows, as do pro-lifers nationwide, that if someone goes to the trouble of singling you out, you must be doing something right.
Gina is a veteran of several Survivors ProLife Training Camps, and currently lives in San Diego where she plans to attend law school in August 2009.

Red Flag Alert: Why Is the UN Unwilling to Give Details About New Global Gender Policing Agency?

You can be sure that there is some hidden agenda that will do 2 things:
1) Take away national sovereignty
2) Force abortion & birth control on nations who currently reject them
& that is only for starters. I suspect gay rights & radical feminism are on the agenda as well. As you will see, some details have leaked out that show that what I just said isn't idle supposition.
Bluntly, there is no justification to keep details secret unless they do have something to hide. Be honest, how many of you out there would buy a car from a dealer if he said that he would tell you what was included in the package offered for a car or final price or the loan details only after you signed up to buy it? The same for a house? Yet that is exactly what the UN Secretary General's Advisor on Gender Issues, Rachel N. Mayanja of Kenya is doing by refusing to give specific details.
The UN is becoming more & more dangerous to American sovereignty. With some administrations we might be able to battle those attacks. The Obama administration is not 1 of them. & that scares me.
I know I've said this before. The Scripture quote from Isaiah 2 that is on the wall of the UN building in NY speaks about beating swords into plowshares. It refers to establishing the reign of the Messiah at His 2nd Coming. The way the UN is functioning by its anti-life policies is anything but helping to establish that reign. In fact, these policies are in downright opposition to the Will of God & what will occur during that eternal reign.
By Susan Yoshihara
NEW YORK, NY, April 23, 2009 (C-FAM) - At a meeting at United Nations (UN) headquarters last week, nations pushed back when UN staff insisted governments approve an enormous new gender-policing agency with scant details on its budget, staffing, or mandate. The UN Secretariat called the meeting to get nations to choose one of four models it proposed for a new UN "gender entity." It is estimated that the new entity will have a minimum one billion dollar annual budget, including non-voluntary funding by the United States (US) and other major UN donors, while giving the new agency free rein to set the UN's "gender" agenda and broad authority to hold UN agencies and member States accountable for implementing it.
The UN Secretary General's Advisor on Gender Issues, Rachel N. Mayanja of Kenya, resisted attempts to pin down the UN Secretariat on specifics, drawing strong objections from several national delegations. A delegate from Singapore complained that sovereign nations were pressed for a decision but were denied an estimated budget or even an outline of the new entity. The delegate pointed out that nations had been assured the new office was supposed to save resources but, as a representative from UNIFEM (the UN Development Fund for Women) had just admitted, the Secretariat's preferred model would require significantly more funding than the status quo.
Mayanja insisted that such details would be provided but only after nations chose one of the four options. The options include: maintaining the status quo with "gender" affairs divided among various UN entities, establishing a fund or program, a department within the secretariat, or a "composite" fund/department.
Despite the apparent obfuscation, documents provided by the UN Secretariat reveal the sweeping scope of the Secretary General Ban Ki-moon's endorsed "composite" option. It calls for a "global presence" in some 150 countries, with an Under Secretary General at the helm given authority to appoint all "staff, consultants, and experts" of her choosing, set the "normative and policy" agenda, and "hold accountable" all other UN agencies such as UNICEF to promote it by linking it to their operations on the ground.
According to a Secretary General's report dated March 5, the specific mandate would focus on "advocacy" to get "national attention" for "emerging issues, under-recognized, and under-resourced issues," and would "maximize the contribution of civil society" both at the UN and at the national level. Critics are concerned that this will further empower non-governmental (NGO) activists who use the UN to circumvent the democratic process in their countries in order to promote highly controversial social policies.
Along with the Secretary General, backers of the "composite" option include the European Union, whose representative called for immediate endorsement of the composite option, and powerful feminist NGOs under the umbrella group Gender Equality Architecture Reform (GEAR).
In a recent interview, GEAR member Charlotte Bunch intimated that her NGO has been regularly consulted on an "acceptable" choice for the entity, and has promoted the "composite" model. She explained that it is the only option that allows the entity to get non-voluntary funding from the US and other donors to reach a minimum of one billion dollars a year, while creating massive presence and influence on the ground to promote the "normative and policy functions" of the new entity.
(Reprinted with permission from

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Some Good News, Bad News About DBQ

1st the good news:

Dubuque made Relocate-America's™ Top 100 Places to Live in 2009. (Other than its top 10, they didn't assign a numerical order.)

Now the bad news, & even though many here won't, everyone in DBQ should hang their heads in shame as well as asking God's forgiveness for us deserving this 1:
In its current issue, Gay Chicago Magazine is promoting Dubuque as "the logical, obvious and most desirable of wedding destinations".
This is an infamia. Nothing less.

Dying to Tell the Truth About the Democratic Party

Shaddap A You Face*

*Or: The only way the left can win its arguments is by taking away your 1st Amendment right to free speech. (& the rest of the 1st Amendment rights are being endangered by them as well.)

Thank You, Mr. Brown, and Merry Christmas

Monday, April 20, 2009 12:19 PM CDT
OELWEIN - Retired West Delaware teacher, William "Bill" Green, and Dave Prehm, New Hampton art instructor never envisioned they would team up to produce their first children's book entitled "Thank you, Mr. Brown, and Merry Christmas."
The story was written by Green and illustrated by Prehm. Both men are longtime friends and previously taught at Britt, in the early 80's --- Green at the elementary and Prehm at the high school.
The author and illustrator will be showcasing their new release at the Oelwein Public Library on Tuesday evening April 28 from 5 - 7 p.m. The public is invited to attend.
The book is a nostalgic look back at a simpler time when Christmas was celebrated in public schools. The book revolves around the community of Lamont, the author's hometown.
The two main characters in the story, Mr. Brown and Nancy, are fictional, but the others mentioned in the story may be recognized or remembered by area residents.
An excerpt follows:
"Even though it was ages ago, I could still remember all those who touched my life there. Janitor George, the cooks- Mrs. Helms, Mrs. Scovel, and Nellie Richmond - Harvey my bus driver, and Mrs. Sage, my fourth grade teacher. I also thought fondly of Mr. Brown, who helped me for several years with my reading and math."
Green says he actually wrote the story as a gift for his family, but it became much more than that when friends and acquaintances encouraged him to publish the book.
In this fully illustrated storybook…Nancy and Mr. Brown formed an everlasting bond at Lamont Elementary. Nancy shares some Christmas time memories and something special that she learned from her teacher, Mr. Brown, that even he wasn’t aware of. That “special” something was that life’s lessons don’t always come from text books, but from simple acts of kindness and caring.
"The book may serve to motivate a struggling student, inspire a teacher, or just serve as a reminder to all of us that life's lessons don't always come from text books, but from simple acts of kindness and caring," commented Green.
Green also stated that the illustrations really enhance the book. "What's a children's book without illustrations? Dave did a terrific job and really got into the project. Each illustration is truly a work of art and we have sold prints as well as the book itself." Green went on to say, " I could have had the publishing company provide the illustrations, but I knew Dave could do the job if he had the time. Plus, he is a great artist, friend, role model and promoter."
"Thank you, Mr .Brown, and Merry Christmas", is "geared" toward elementary students, but has adult appeal as well. The book is available at many local libraries and on-line shoppers can find the book at and
According to Green significant sales have occurred on-line despite the fact the book is set during the Christmas season. Green also states: "The great part about this book is the fact that many in Iowa and in the Midwest readily relate to it. What's even greater is that ordinary people we all know, like those mentioned in the book can have an extraordinary impact on those they interact with."
If you would like more information about the book, the author and the illustrator, go to You may also send email to or call (563) 920 6037.
FYI: Lamont is a part of what is now the Starmont Community School District. (STrawberry Point, Arlington, Lamont)
I saw this article in the online version of my hometown paper (Oelwein Daily Register) the other day. When you think of an author's book tour to promote his/her latest effort, you don't think of Iowa, & especially small town Iowa. & definitely not Oelwein. But then, it isn't every day that a book that focuses on the real heart of the state, the small farm communities that are the building blocks of Iowa, is written. No, I haven't had a chance to read the book yet, but I am looking forward to being able to do so.

Lila Rose with Glenn Beck

For more go to Live Action.

Can You Say AntiChrist? I Thought So!

This picture has been making the rounds of the blog-o-sphere. It is called The Truth & was painted by Michael D'Antuono. & while I am not saying Obama is the AntiChrist of Revelation, this is just more proof that he is an antiChrist as defined in St. John's Epistles. Blasphemy is another word that has been used on some posts, appropriately IMHO. Idolotry is another term that could be used to describe what accurately captures a wide held view of Obama as well, that he is THE savior.

Want To Learn More About the Extraordinary Form of the Roman Rite? Here's Your Chance

Una Voce Quad Cities is happy to announce a Workshop for the Laity in the Extraordinary Form of the Roman Rite (the “Latin Mass”), Saturday, June 13, 2009 (the feast of St. Anthony of Padua) at St. Anthony’s Church, 417 N. Main St., Davenport, Iowa 52801. (click here for a map)
Fr. Scott Haynes, SJC, a priest of the Canons Regular of St. John Cantius in Chicago, will speak on the history and ceremony of the Roman Rite, the Divine Office, and Gregorian chant. Mass will be included in the schedule, and we will conclude the day by singing the short mid-afternoon service of None in Latin according to the traditional Gregorian Chant melodies.
9:00 am Lecture: History of the Roman Rite
10:00 am Liturgy: Latin High Mass (1962 Missale Romanum)
11:15 am Lecture: Mystical Theology of the Mass
12:15 pm Lunch Break (bring a sack lunch or visit a local restaurant)
1:15 pm Lecture: Introduction to the Divine Office
2:15 pm Workshop: Singing Gregorian Chant
3:00 pm Liturgy: None (mid-afternoon prayer) for the Feast of St. Anthony
3:30 pm Dismissal
To register for this event, visit the following link:
Cost is $10 for students, $20 for individuals.
For more information on this event, please contact
Fr. Scott A. Haynes, SJC
Canons Regular of St. John Cantius
825 N. Carpenter St.
Chicago, IL 60642
312 243 7373 x 111
For more information on the Extraordinary Form check out Sancta Missa.

Monday, April 27, 2009

Mary Ann Glendon to Notre Dame: I Will Not Be A Cover For You Inviting Obama

Manassas, Va. – At the news of Ambassador Mary Ann Glendon’s decision to decline the University of Notre Dame’s offer of the prestigious Laetare Medal and a speaking platform on account of the selection of President Obama as commencement speaker, Cardinal Newman Society president Patrick J. Reilly issued the following statement:
“Mary Ann Glendon is one of the most accomplished Catholic and pro-life leaders of our time. In heroic fashion, she has willingly sacrificed an award that she richly deserves, as a casualty of Notre Dame's choice to betray its Catholic mission. We urge Catholics nationwide to continue to pray that Notre Dame will end this scandal.”
Below is the text of the Honorable Mary Ann Glendon’s letter to the president of The University of Notre Dame, Rev. John I. Jenkins, C.S.C.

April 27, 2009
The Rev. John I. Jenkins, C.S.C.
University of Notre Dame

Dear Father Jenkins,
When you informed me in December 2008 that I had been selected to receive Notre Dame’s Laetare Medal, I was profoundly moved. I treasure the memory of receiving an honorary degree from Notre Dame in 1996, and I have always felt honored that the commencement speech I gave that year was included in the anthology of Notre Dame’s most memorable commencement speeches. So I immediately began working on an acceptance speech that I hoped would be worthy of the occasion, of the honor of the medal, and of your students and faculty.
Last month, when you called to tell me that the commencement speech was to be given by President Obama, I mentioned to you that I would have to rewrite my speech. Over the ensuing weeks, the task that once seemed so delightful has been complicated by a number of factors.
First, as a longtime consultant to the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops, I could not help but be dismayed by the news that Notre Dame also planned to award the president an honorary degree. This, as you must know, was in disregard of the U.S. bishops’ express request of 2004 that Catholic institutions “should not honor those who act in defiance of our fundamental moral principles” and that such persons “should not be given awards, honors or platforms which would suggest support for their actions.” That request, which in no way seeks to control or interfere with an institution’s freedom to invite and engage in serious debate with whomever it wishes, seems to me so reasonable that I am at a loss to understand why a Catholic university should disrespect it.
Then I learned that “talking points” issued by Notre Dame in response to widespread criticism of its decision included two statements implying that my acceptance speech would somehow balance the event:
• “President Obama won’t be doing all the talking. Mary Ann Glendon, the former U.S. ambassador to the Vatican, will be speaking as the recipient of the Laetare Medal.”
• “We think having the president come to Notre Dame, see our graduates, meet our leaders, and hear a talk from Mary Ann Glendon is a good thing for the president and for the causes we care about.”
A commencement, however, is supposed to be a joyous day for the graduates and their families. It is not the right place, nor is a brief acceptance speech the right vehicle, for engagement with the very serious problems raised by Notre Dame’s decision—in disregard of the settled position of the U.S. bishops—to honor a prominent and uncompromising opponent of the Church’s position on issues involving fundamental principles of justice.
Finally, with recent news reports that other Catholic schools are similarly choosing to disregard the bishops’ guidelines, I am concerned that Notre Dame’s example could have an unfortunate ripple effect.
It is with great sadness, therefore, that I have concluded that I cannot accept the Laetare Medal or participate in the May 17 graduation ceremony.
In order to avoid the inevitable speculation about the reasons for my decision, I will release this letter to the press, but I do not plan to make any further comment on the matter at this time.
Yours Very Truly,
Mary Ann Glendon

Mary Ann Glendon is Learned Hand Professor of Law at Harvard Law School. A member of the editorial and advisory board of First Things, she served as the U.S. Ambassador to the Vatican from 2007 to 2009.
1. I applaud her decision to say no. She saw the ND was using her to say that the commencement would be a discussion of the issues. She knew it wouldn't & is refusing to go along with ND's charade.
2. This is going to leave ND in a bad position. At this point, any other real Pro-Life Catholic will also say no. & giving it to someone like Kmiec will just make the scandal worse.
3. Her pre-emptive release of her letter clearly show that she knew ND might try & spin her decision if she didn't. So she said what she had to, got it out there, & now, let the chips fall where they may. She has done the right thing & it speaks for itself. She has shown class, & smarts.
4. Fr. Jenkins clearly better be preparing to resign. But the Board of Trustees better take their share of the blame as they are usually the ones who approve an honorary degree. & this mess is not going to fade away so easily as they hope either. ND is either going to have to become authenticly Catholic or face the lose of big donors & its position in Catholic education. Both of which could be fatal.
Added @ 12:49 am on 28 April 2009
Here is the text of Fr. Jenkin's reply: "We are, of course, disappointed that Professor Glendon has made this decision. It is our intention to award the Laetare Medal to another deserving recipient, and we will make that announcement as soon as possible." See point 2 above for how I see that playing out.
Also a bit more on point 4., a national effort consisting of Notre Dame graduates and financial supporters, announced Monday that they have personally confirmed over $8.2 million in withheld donations. In a press release, contact person David DiFranco (Class of '95) said: "The website has received over 900 pledges from alumni and donors promising to withhold future donations. Several of the largest gifts include estate bequests to the University that have been removed from donors’ wills. organizers have personally confirmed a majority of the largest donations, and continue to verify the validity of millions of additional gifts."
The process of verifying the largest donors has been carefully conducted,” DiFranco explained. “We dismissed the obvious bogus submissions, and are not counting a huge number of larger donations that we are still in the process of verifying. We are speaking directly with donors, and in several cases we have spoken with estate attorneys to confirm that Notre Dame has been stripped from a donor’s will. We are going about this process with a critical eye in order that that the numbers we report are accurate. For that reason, the $8.2 million we are reporting today is actually very conservative.”
The website has been up for just a little over a week now. From the title it is clear that they are also calling for Jenkins to resign or be fired as well. (Source: Notre Dame Loses $8.2 Million in Withheld Donations over Obama Scandal)
Meanwhile, the number of Bishops who have spoken up to express their disapproval is growing. According to a LifeSite News report, as of 27 April 2008 the count stands at 48. A good number of them have specificly cited the 2004 directive by the U.S. Bishops Conference (USCCB) forbidding Catholic institutions from honoring pro-abortion politicians. That is the directive that Fr. Jenkins says doesn't apply in this case. Let's see 48 Bishops or Fr. Jenkins? Not that the majority is always right, but in this case I would say the Bishops are better interpreters of their document than Jenkins is.

Troy Newman - Why the "Morning After" Pill Is Bad

Speaker assails 'morning after' pill
President of Operation Rescue speaks at Dubuque County Right to Life's annual dinner.


Troy Newman calls the decision by the Food and Drug Administration to allow 17-year-olds the ability to buy the "morning after" emergency contraception pill without a doctor's prescription "a classic bait and switch."
"It's not a contraceptive -- a barrier method would be a contraceptive," said Newman, president of Wichita, Kan.-based Operation Rescue. "It is an abortifacient (a drug or instrument which produces an abortion.)"
Newman became the leader of Operation Rescue in 1998 and refashioned the group into a nationally active organization. He spoke Friday night at the Dubuque County Right to Life's annual LIFE dinner at the Grand River Center. He sat with the Telegraph Herald earlier to discuss current events surrounding opposition to abortion.
Question: What was your reaction to the decision to allow 17-year-olds over-the-counter access to the "morning ,after" pill?
Answer: "This pill is taking the life of a baby. You cannot take a human life; it is immoral to do so."
Question: Are you troubled by the administration's decisions related to abortion?
Answer: "Troubling is the least amount I could say about President Obama. It is a radical left-wing revolution, but I see the sleeping giant awakening, the Red States, the heartland of America. That is what we're here for: to be the watchdog."
Question: Why do you think sign-carrying opponents continue to stand outside Dubuque's Planned Parenthood facility?
Answer: "This isn't an ideology for us. This isn't lower taxes, this isn't a new subdivision going up in town. What they have to understand is we believe -- and we know -- this is about the taking of innocent life, and we find it reprehensible."
Question: Why did you become involved in the movement against abortion?
Answer: "Somebody invited me to a men's conference in Orange County, California. He drove me past an abortion clinic. I saw a picture of an aborted baby.
I immediately knew there was good and evil. It was just that black and white for me."
This is about as fair & balanced as the TH gets. I was amazed that it actually made the front page. But Saturday was a slow news day. It also shows how lazy they are in covering something they oppose. There is nothing about his speech at the DCRTL banquet. I couldn't make it, but I am willing to bet the TH didn't have anyone there to cover it. But I know they would have it it was a Planned Parenthood fundraiser. There would have been a glowing report of every word the speaker said.
Still, the TH got across more of the truth than it hoped to. Of course the comments section has the usual gang of hate mongering pro-aborts spreading their venom & lies.
PS I talked to some friends who were there that sayed Troy Newman's talk was basicly 1 of encouraging us in our efforts to fight PP & the evils of the abortion industry.

Cardinal Pell - Solving AIDS Crisis With Condoms Is Ridiculous

On St Patrick's Day, Pope Benedict spoke about the Catholic Church's teachings and the spread of AIDS in Africa. His comments provoked a storm of indignation, much of it genuine if uninformed, but a deal of it ferocious and disingenuous. It helps to be clear about what he said.
The Pope rejected the notion that the Catholic attitude was unrealistic and ineffective, adding: "If there is no human dimension, if Africans do not help [by responsible behaviour], the problem cannot be overcome by the distribution of condoms; on the contrary, they increase it."
During an Easter television interview, I supported Pope Benedict's comments. I said: "I agree with him totally [about condoms] because they're encouraging promiscuity, because they're encouraging irresponsibility." I also said: "The idea that you can solve a great spiritual and health crisis like AIDS with a few mechanical contraptions like condoms is ridiculous."
My comments, too, prompted a reaction, including one from the Herald's David Marr, who galloped into the fray to defend the sexual revolution against what the Pope and I had said. He even mentioned Africa a couple of times. "How many good Catholics will die in Africa and the Philippines," he asks, before they learn?
At the heart of Marr's position is a fundamental misconception, which he states as follows: "And we know in our hearts - and every reputable study confirms - that the church's call for abstinence is useless."
In fact, the studies confirm that behaviour modification is possible and is occurring. In Cameroon the percentage of young people having sex before the age of 15 has gone down from 35 per cent to 14 per cent, United Nations AIDS said last year. Uganda has had a 70 per cent decline in HIV prevalence since the early 1990s, linked to a 60 per cent reduction in casual sex, says a 2004 report in Science. Similar evidence exists in Africa, from Ethiopia to Malawi.
Other studies support my claim that condoms encourage promiscuity and irresponsibility. UN AIDS has found that even when people use condoms consistently, something goes wrong about 10 per cent of the time. Condoms give users an exaggerated sense of safety, so that they sometimes engage in "risk compensation". In one Ugandan study, gains in condom use seem to have been offset by increases in the number of sex partners.
Pope Benedict was right to point out that the human dimension in sexual activity is crucial. We are not automatons, slaves to animal instinct. Education campaigns focusing on fewer partners, less casual sex and less use of sex workers have been key to reducing infection rates.
Earlier this year, the British Medical Journal reported: "In numerous large studies, concerted efforts to promote use of condoms has consistently failed to control rates of sexually transmitted infection", even in Canada, Sweden and Switzerland.
The response of critics to the Pope's comments have been classic examples of diversionary tactics; blame someone else in case people begin to understand that your solution is a significant cause of the problem.
To blame Catholics and Pope Benedict for the spread of HIV/AIDS requires proof that while people are ignoring the first, essential Christian requirement to be chaste before and within marriage, they are slavishly obedient to a second requirement not to use condoms. I doubt anyone thinks that is realistically the case.
Catholic teaching is opposed to adultery, fornication and homosexual intercourse, even with condoms, not because it denies condoms offer health protection, but because traditional Christian moral teaching believes all extra-marital intercourse contradicts the proper meaning of love and sexuality.
Christ called Christians to a different way of living, to a purity of heart where even looking on a woman with aggressive and disordered desire (lust) is wrong.
At least 25 per cent of the services and care for people with HIV/AIDS in Africa is provided by the Catholic Church. While the role of a church is different from government, which has to legislate and organise for people of all religions as well as those without, both are required to respect the evidence and good moral values in the programs they deliver.
Catholics are not obliged to protest publicly against every harm minimisation program, even when the church urges her members not to participate. In the same way, governments and non-Catholic aid agencies can and will continue to hand out condoms in HIV/AIDS programs, although the evidence suggests they may on balance be exacerbating the problem.
But all of us who want to help prevent and reduce the spread of HIV/AIDS need to respect the evidence about what helps and what doesn't. And the evidence is that it's not condoms which make the crucial difference, but the choices people make about how they use the gift of sexuality.
Cardinal George Pell is the Archbishop of Sydney

If Slavery & Segregation Were Wrong, So Is Abortion

By Fr. John J. Raphael, SSJ
(Taken from the Spring 2009 Josephite Harvest)

The week of January 20th was a period of great historical significance in our country as we witnessed the inauguration of the first African American as president of the United States of America.
It was a week of great symbolism as a country which has been deeply stained with the blood, sweat, and tears of peoples of African descent, chose a man of African descent to be its leader. Many could never have imagined a day when the White House, once serviced by African slaves, would have an African American and his family as its chief occupants
It was a week where a spirit of optimism and hope for a better tomorrow permeated the atmosphere as President Obama emphasized in his inauguration speech that his presidency would usher in an era of liberty and opportunity for all!
And so it must also be noted that in that very same week, an equally significant event was held in the very same place as the events surrounding the inauguration. On January 22, two days after the inauguration, hundreds of thousands of Americans of every race, color, and creed gathered as they do every year on this day, to protect and defend life and to ask President Obama, Congress, and the Supreme Court to include the unborn in the plan for America’s
That week was a moment of great symbolism, but it also reminded us that countries are not governed by symbols, they are governed by men and women, politicians to be exact. And so, as citizens of these United States, we must hold our elected leaders accountable to our values as we move from symbol to substance.
As pro-life African Americans present at the March for Life, the St. Augustine High School contingent prayed particularly that the first African-American president would end America’s history of excluding whole classes of human beings from the full blessings of life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness.
We prayed that President Obama would one day be known as a president who embraced and defended life from the womb to the tomb, and that the rights of the unborn would be given the same kind of consideration and respect that he and others are giving to the suspected terrorist detainees at Guantanamo Bay. We continue to pray!
Pro-Life advocates, African Americans and others, know that we have a great challenge ahead of us in the defense of the unborn because, sadly, Senator and Candidate Obama, and many in his Cabinet, including our Catholic Vice-President, Joseph Biden, have regularly sided with the advocates of abortion.
During his first week in office, President Obama issued an executive order rescinding the U. S. Mexico City Policy. This long-standing policy prohibited the use of American tax dollars to fund abortion as a family planning measure in developing countries. President Obama’s order reversing this policy is being highly lauded by aggressive pro-abortion groups such as Planned Parenthood – which stands to regain much funding which it lost as a result of the policy, and other groups such as the National Abortion Rights League, NARAL.
That American tax dollars are being spent in this fashion makes all of us more directly responsible for the consequences of spreading the pro-abortion agenda beyond the United States and into the developing world.
Unfortunately, this move is a signal that Candidate Obama’s promise to Planned Parenthood to protect “a woman’s right to choose” was not an empty one, hence his promise to sign the Freedom of Choice Act – which would enshrine legal and unlimited access to abortion on demand throughout the country – if he became president must be taken very seriously.
If we believe that slavery was wrong, if we believe that segregation was wrong; if we would never support a politician who upheld these odious practices, then we must believe that abortion is wrong and actively fight to protect the unborn regardless of who occupies positions of leadership.
If abortion is okay, then slavery was okay; if abortion is okay, then segregation was okay because it was always a matter of choice – the choice of those who were in control. But if these things were wrong because they deprived men and women of human and civil rights, then how much more is that act wrong and offensive to God which deprives an innocent human being of his or her very life?
We must act as indeed our ancestors acted before us making possible the day whenan African American could be elected to the presidency of the United States. The law and the Constitution have not always been on the side of justice and truth.
After a terrible Supreme Court decision (Dred Scott) upholding it, slavery was finally outlawed after a war with the greatest casualty numbers of all American wars. It’s hateful daughter segregation was eventually ended by a Supreme court decision (Brown) that reversed a previous one (Plessy), a movement committed to non-violent protests, civil disobedience, and imprisonment (in addition to beatings, lynchings, and assassinations) — all designed to change laws first (1964 Civil Rights and 1965 Voter Rights Acts), and then hearts.
When America was pro-choice on slavery and pro-choice on segregation, the choices ofstates, slave owners, and segregationists ultimately had to be limited by law so that justice for the oppressed could finally prevail.
Are we are willing to stand up for the unborn today as our forebears stood up for us? If we are not, then unto what purpose is our faith? In the end, we must be accountable to God and there is no doubt where He stands,
Before I formed you in the womb, I knew you, before you were born, I consecrated you, a prophet to the nations, I appointed you” (Jeremiah 1:5).
This day I call heaven and earth as witnesses against you that I have set before you life and death, blessings and curses. Now choose life, so that you and your children may live” (Deuteronomy 30:19).
May God make these United States and us, the people who form them, a people of life and justice for all, born and unborn, lest the great symbolism of recent weeks ultimately be rendered void of all substance.

Father John J. Raphael, SSJ, is principal of St. Augustine High School in New Orleans.

Dominican Republic Amends Constitution, Bans Abortion

& UNICEF & other pro-aborts are up in arms. The 'culture of death" is throwing a hissy fit because they lost a battle. IMHO, they need to get over it. Good won over their demonic agenda. But, I suspect the "culture of death" will not role over & go away silently. They will use the UN & other countries to try & blackmail the Dominican Republic by withholding financial aide as long as they abortion ban is in place. & A huge dose of anti-Catholicism will be included in these attempts to overthrow the ban.
In fact, the attacks on the Catholic Church have already begun. From an article in Dominican Today: "Several citizens and health and human rights specialists called 'a shame and a mistake' the approval in the first roll call of the controversial article 30 of the constitutional reform bill submitted by the Executive Branch, and rebuff the Catholic Church’s alleged influence on the assembly members’ decision.
United Nations Program for Human Development coordinator Miguel Ceara Hatton criticized the approved article and the Catholic Church, which in his view has become a motor for 'social exclusion' in the country. 'The Catholic Church influenced in everything. For following a dogma it has become a source and a motor for social exclusion in the Dominican Republic. The dogma is placed ahead of the needs of the population, health, housing and better living conditions.' " (Groups rail the Dominican Catholic Church for abortion ban) (emphasis mine)
I would remind those people who complain about dogma (which simply means teaching) being put ahead of human needs what Jesus said about gaining the whole world & losing their souls. Actually, they are creating a false dichotomy by saying these needs can only be met by killing the unborn. Pro-aborts are the true motor for "social exclusion" because they exclude the unborn from having their basic human right to life. The Catholic Church is standing up for the true rights of everyone.
Their attacks on the Catholic Church are another example of calling evil (abortion) good & good (defending the basic human right to life) evil. But since Satan, the father of lies, is behind the "culture of death" is it any wonder that they would use lies to forward their evil agenda?
Pro-life article 11 passes by large majority despite pressure from pro-abortion groups
By Matthew Cullinan Hoffman
SANTO DOMINGO, April 22, 2009 ( - The Dominican Republic has voted to approve language in its new constitution protecting the right to life from the moment of conception.
Article 11 of the new constitution, which was approved by a large majority of 167-32, states that "the right to life is inviolable from conception until death. The death penalty cannot be established, pronounced, nor applied, in any case."
The approval of the article came in the wake of a series of massive campaigns by the Catholic bishops of the Dominican Republic, led by Cardinal Archbishop Nicolas de Jesus Lopez of Santo Domingo. The Cardinal has organized marches, has given a speech on national television, and has staged large-scale protests outside of government buildings and in other places over the past two years.
On Easter Sunday, a little more than a week before the vote, the Cardinal and other priests gave sermons on the importance of protecting the right to life (see LifeSiteNews coverage at
The nation's Evangelical Protestant churches have also had a major influence on the outcome. Organized by such leaders as Dr. Gene Antonio, they have succeeded in playing video of abortions on national television and have distributed tens of thousands of flyers to Dominicans."
We are thrilled that the protection of human life from the moment of conception is now established into the constitution in spite of fierce international pressure to legalize abortion," stated Antonio. "This overwhelming victory serves as an example to the other Latin countries fighting to protect life, that we can win and we must win because the lives of little people are at stake."
The article passed despite pressure from pro-abortion groups, whom Catholic Church officials have accused of representing the international abortion lobby, as well as opposition from the Dominican Medical College.
Passage of article 11 ensures that the Dominican Republic's existing penal code, which punishes abortion in all cases except when the life of the mother is at stake, will remain intact despite the pressure exerted by international and domestic pro-abortion organizations.
Related LifeSiteNews Coverage:
Santo Domingo Cardinal Calls Abortionists "Butchers" and "Merchants" in Easter Homily
Interview: Cardinal Nicolas Lopez Gives Prescription for Defeating International Abortion Lobby
Catholics in Dominican Republic Plan Offensive Against Abortion
Dominicans Stage Massive Pro-Life Demonstration at National Congress
Dominican Republic Protest Against Attempt to Legalize Abortion

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Bishop D’Arcy - Fr. Jenkins Is Wrong, Catholics in Public Life,” Does Apply To Obama

There isn't much to add to this statement. Except to applaud Bishop D"Arcy for his willingness to do his " duty as the bishop of this diocese to respond and correct." He has taken Fr. Jenkins to task & clearly shows why Jenkins is wrong in justifying the invite to Obama.
My Dear Brothers and Sisters in Christ,
Recently, Father John Jenkins, CSC, in a letter of response to Bishop Olmsted of the Diocese of Phoenix, who had written him, critical of the decision to invite President Obama to speak and receive an honorary degree of law at Notre Dame, indicated that it was his conviction that the statement “Catholics in Political Life” (USCCB) did not apply in this matter. Father Jenkins kindly sent me a copy of his letter, and also at a later meeting, asked for a response.In an April 15th letter to Father Jenkins, I responded to his letter.
Now the points made in his letter have been sent by Father Jenkins to the members of the Notre Dame Board of Trustees and have been publicized nationally, as well as locally in the South Bend Tribune. Since the matter is now public, it is my duty as the bishop of this diocese to respond and correct. I take up this responsibility with some sadness, but also with the conviction that if I did not do so, I would be remiss in my pastoral responsibility.
Rather than share my full letter, which I have shared with some in church leadership, I prefer to present some of the key points.
1. The meaning of the sentence in the USCCB document relative to Catholic institutions is clear. It places the responsibility on those institutions, and indeed, on the Catholic community itself. “The Catholic community and Catholic institutions should not honor those who act in defiance of our fundamental moral principles. They should not be given awards, honors or platforms which would suggest support for their actions.” — “Catholics in Political Life,” USCCB.
2. When there is a doubt concerning the meaning of a document of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops, where does one find the authentic interpretation? A fundamental, canonical and theological principle states that it is found in the local bishop, who is the teacher and lawgiver in his diocese. — Canon 330, 375 §§ 1 & 2; 380; 381 § 1; 391 § 1; 392, & 394 §1.
3. I informed Father Jenkins that if there was any genuine questions or doubt about the meaning of the relevant sentence in the conference’s document, any competent canonist with knowledge of the tradition and love for Christ’s church had the responsibility to inform Father Jenkins of the fundamental principle that the diocesan bishop alone bears the responsibility to provide an authoritative interpretation.
4. I reminded Father Jenkins that he indicated that he consulted presidents of other Catholic universities, and at least indirectly, consulted other bishops, since he asked those presidents to share with him those judgments of their own bishops. However, he chose not to consult his own bishop who, as I made clear, is the teacher and lawgiver in his own diocese. I reminded Father Jenkins that I was not informed of the invitation until after it was accepted by the president. I mentioned again that it is at the heart of the diocesan bishop’s pastoral responsibility to teach as revealed in sacred Scripture and the tradition. (“Lumen Gentium,” 20; and “Christus Dominus,” 2.) I reminded him that it is also central to the university’s relationship to the church. (“Ex corde ecclesiae,” 27 & 28; Gen. Norm., Art. 5, §§ 1-3.)
5. Another key point. In his letter to Bishop Olmsted and in the widespread publicity, which has taken place as the points in the letter have been made public, Father Jenkins declared the invitation to President Obama does not “suggest support” for his actions, because he has expressed and continues to express disagreement with him on issues surrounding protection of life. I wrote that the outpouring of hundreds of thousands who are shocked by the invitation clearly demonstrates, that this invitation has, in fact, scandalized many Catholics and other people of goodwill. In my office alone, there have been over 3,300 messages of shock, dismay and outrage, and they are still coming in. It seems that the action in itself speaks so loudly that people have not been able to hear the words of Father Jenkins, and indeed, the action has suggested approval to many.
In the publicity surrounding the points Father Jenkins has made, he also says he is “following the document of the bishops” by “laying a basis for engagement with the president on this issue.” I indicated that I, like many others, will await to see what the follow up is on this issue between Notre Dame and President Obama.
6. As I have said in a recent interview and which I have said to Father Jenkins, it would be one thing to bring the president here for a discussion on healthcare or immigration, and no person of goodwill could rightly oppose this. We have here, however, the granting of an honorary degree of law to someone whose activities both as president and previously, have been altogether supportive of laws against the dignity of the human person yet to be born.
In my letter, I have also asked Father Jenkins to correct, and if possible, withdraw the erroneous talking points, which appeared in the South Bend Tribune and in other media outlets across the country. The statements which Father Jenkins has made are simply wrong and give a flawed justification for his actions.
I consider it now settled — that the USCCB document, “Catholics in Public Life,” does indeed apply in this matter. The failure to consult the local bishop who, whatever his unworthiness, is the teacher and lawgiver in the diocese, is a serious mistake. Proper consultation could have prevented an action, which has caused such painful division between Notre Dame and many bishops — and a large number of the faithful.
That division must be addressed through prayer and action, and I pledge to work with Father Jenkins and all at Notre Dame to heal the terrible breach, which has taken place between Notre Dame and the church. It cannot be allowed to continue. I ask all to pray that this healing will take place in a way that is substantial and true, and not illusory. Notre Dame and Father Jenkins must do their part if this healing is to take place. I will do my part.
Sincerely yours in our Lord,
Most Reverend John M. D’Arcy Headlines

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