Wednesday, January 31, 2007

struggle against sin

Calling Rome Home: Resisting sin
Heb. 12: 1-4 ... In your struggle against sin you have not yet resisted to the point of shedding blood.
Chris makes the good point on this last line. We too often fall to temptation without much of a fight. That verse has often struck me in the same way.

More Trigger laws getting approved

North Dakota State House Strongly Backs Abortion Ban Trigger Law
Bismarck, ND ( -- The North Dakota state House approved a measure that would prohibit most abortions, leaving it legal only in extremely rare cases when it might be necessary to save the life of the mother. The legislation, known as a trigger law, would go into effect once the Supreme Court overturns Roe v. Wade.
Rep. James Kerzman, a Democrat, is the primary sponsor of the measure and he said unborn children must be protected in all circumstances, even if a pregnancy is a result of rape or incest.
Good to hear the old country is still fighting the fight.
Christopher Dodson, executive director of the North Dakota Catholic Conference, said his group supports the bill because it doesn't have prison terms and fines for women, like past abortions bans that the legislature has rejected.

"The woman is second victim in the abortion tragedy,"
Dodson told the Tribune newspaper.
So, true. Penalize the perpetrators of this crime. And more often than not, the women are just victims pushed into it by others.
Other states are considering trigger laws as well, including Texas, Virginia, Oklahoma and Utah
Except it looks like Utah will challenge the Roe v Wade rather than just going for the trigger law.
Utah State House Committee Approves Bill Banning Most Abortions

Tuesday, January 30, 2007


What Chris said, I wish he would.

Monday, January 29, 2007

Reserved for the elect few

Yosemite Lawsuit Could Limit Park Access-AOL News
In November, a federal judge barred crews from finishing $60 million in
construction projects in Yosemite Valley, siding with a small group of
environmentalists who sued the federal government, saying further
commercial development would bring greater numbers of visitors, thus
threatening the Merced's fragile ecosystem
So we should preserve our national parks so everyone can enjoy the pristine beauty, but we really shouldn't allow people to enjoy them. Unless you are part of the "more than equal" to paraphrase from the big brother book "1984".

Of course, we all should still pay for these "parks" because they are "ours", but heaven forbid they actually get upgrades so they can bring some cash in.

Bottom line here:
The Merced itself is protected under the federal Wild and Scenic Rivers Act.
Go look up the Wild and Scenic Rivers act if you are running short on conspiracy material. It is insane what the environ wackos want to do with our country.

Holier families

Bishop Yanta and the recipe for Holier families
Prayer topped the list of several practical tips for strengthening the Catholic family that the bishop of Amarillo offered in a recent pastoral letter.
The bishop reminded parents of their responsibility to teach their children to pray. "No Catholic child," he said, "should be enrolled in a Catholic school or CCD program who doesn't already know by heart how to recite the Sign of the Cross, Our Father, and Hail Mary."
Sounds reasonable to me. If our children don't start picking it up by 4, then I start getting worried. My 20 month old keeps us chuckling with his attempts at the Sign of the Cross. The other day he got very close, but the touches across the back of his neck cracked me up.

And a Bishop Yanta also made a point that I like to rail on.
Bishop Yanta also warned parents to not make the mistake of asking their children what they want to be when they grow up, but rather to teach them to ask what God wants of them.

"Parents should remember and teach that the first calling of the Christian and Catholic is to follow Christ," he said.

The bishop said God "has a special love for every human person and a special plan for each of us."

"So the question becomes," he said, "What do you think God wants you to be in your life?"

Sunday, January 28, 2007

5 random things meme

A blogging first, I have now been tagged with the 5 random things about me meme by Chris at callingromehome. So here goes.

1. I have two brothers with the same birthday but I am not a triplet. I am actually a twin and we were born on an older brother's golden birthday, The 12th.

2. I spent my first 8 years of school in a one room country school house. The first 4 years, we had no indoor plumbing. Outdoor toilets in North Dakota winters are not a fond memory.

3. And after that comment, it may be surprising to know that I am younger than 35.

4. I proposed to my wife while driving home in a blizzard.

5. And similar to Chris's #5, I also have rarely been visibly upset. My wife sometimes wonders if I have a pulse.

And although he was recently tagged with a similar meme, I am tagging James at the Daily Brouhaha and Eric at Square Zero. (since they didn't tag me in the weirdness one.)

Friday, January 26, 2007

Trouble seeing

From the Catholic Cartoon Blog via the Curt Jester

Thursday, January 25, 2007

Skating terms I can relate too

Huckleberries Online: John Blanchette's definitions for skating terms
  • Axels – Pawn shop where Spokane skating fans took their stereos, silverware and first-born sons for the cash to afford a season ticket to the championships.

  • Double Axel – Return trip to hock the plasma screen for a second season ticket when your wife refuses to go to the Arena without you.

  • Salchow – What a farmer has to do to afford tickets.
  • Lutz – How much tickets cost, if you haven't already figured that out.
  • Camel – Tonya Harding's brand.
  • Compulsory dance – What seventh-grade boys hate about P.E.

Wednesday, January 24, 2007

The "law" of the land

CBS News Poll: Majority of Americans Want Abortion Illegal, Restrictions
Just 31 percent of the public wants to permit abortion in all cases.
Hmm, guess the "majority" who support abortion on demand have their work cut out for them.

different meanings

China's top Red vows to 'purify' net | The Register
Hu told the politburo the party should "strengthen administration and development of our country's internet culture". He continued: "[To] maintain the initiative in opinion on the internet and raise the level of guidance online, we must promote civilised running and use of the internet and purify the internet environment."
Somehow I don't get the idea that they mean to eradicate spam or wipe out porn. Kinda gives me the shudders and makes me think of how Hitler "purified" Germany.

This is interesting in light of Google and Yahoo perhaps owning up to their sellout to Red China.
Yahoo! helped to identify a journalist in China who was later arrested and convicted for emailing dissident comments to the US, according to the court papers in that man's trial.

Tuesday, January 23, 2007

Maccabeen warriors

The New Liturgical Movement: "Horizontalism … Does Damage to Catholic Faith and Worship" via the Curt Jester
Primary among the duties of a higher liturgical institute is to be a beacon of light in matters liturgical. ... It throws light on the close link between theology and liturgy, between the faith of the Church and the celebration of the mysteries of Christ, between the "lex credendi" and the "lex orandi."
And why we do(1 Mac 1:21) (liturgy geeks, or the Maccabeen warriors as some prefer.) what we do(1 Mac 2:23-25), why we care(1 Mac 2:27).
the sacred liturgy is a gift we receive from Christ through the Church. It is not something that we invent. It has therefore unchangeable elements which come from our Savior Jesus Christ, as in the essential forms of the sacraments, and changeable elements which have been carefully handed on and guarded by the Church.
Now to be fair, there are many reasons for abuse,
Many abuses in matters liturgical are based, not on bad will but on ignorance, because they "involve a rejection of those elements whose deeper meaning is not understood and whose antiquity is not recognized" ("Redemptionis Sacramentum," No. 9). Thus some abuses are due to an undue place given to spontaneity, or creativity, or to a wrong idea of freedom, or to the error of horizontalism which places man at the center of a liturgical celebration instead of vertically focusing on Christ and his mysteries.
So go and read the rest.

Friday, January 19, 2007

Grant them rest

Grant Them Rest: Marie Maus - d. 1/7/2007

A new blog that the Curt Jester linked too. I submitted an entry for my aunt Marie who recently passed away. Lee posted it promptly and here it is, with her picture too. My aunt Marie is in the upper left on the picture. My mom is in the very center.

May she rest in peace. And thank you Lee for your blog.

Thursday, January 18, 2007

How is the health of your Parish?

1. Have you ever heard your priest refer to the GIRM as a suggestion book?

2. Does your parish resemble a hippie commune singing Kumbaya more than a divine, heavenly, worship where heaven and earth meet?

3. When you tell people where you go to church, do they respond, “I didn’t know that was a Catholic Church” or “That’s Catholic?”

4. Has your liturgist replaced the phrase in the creed “made man” with “became one of us” or dumped the “smells and bells” by the wayside?

5. Has the bread and wine used for consecration been replaced with milk and cookies?

6. Does your church have a committee to tell the priest how to wipe his nose, with what to wipe it, and when to wipe it? In other words, are there more committees at your parish than there are parishioners?

7. Has the Clergy confused himself with the laity? Has a parishioner confused himself or herself with the Clergy?

If you answered yes to two or more of these then your parish might be suffering from Litabutinitus (lit-a-bu-ta-ni-tus). Litabutinitus is a deadly crippling disease, which if not treated properly will lead to spiritual staleness, post Vatican II Blues, and closure of an infected parish. In years past the only available treatment was excommunication, and it worked effectively on some and not well enough on others.
Hmmm, I may have to put in a large order soon. I think we may have to go straight to the mass dosages via the donut ministry.
Other possible means of administering Lit-Rite are to hide Lit-Rite 10mg in the jelly donuts and to slip Lit-Rite Liquid into the coffee and juice at the Donut Ministry table after each Sunday mass.

Wednesday, January 17, 2007

get this

I got a visit from Iran.  (on my blog of course, not at home.)  Seems they were searching for 'kalej', whatever that is. 
They didn't stick around long tho.  Wonder why?

What about the fortune seekers

The Curt Jester: Alphabet Jihad
The letter "X" soon may be banned in Saudi Arabia because it resembles the mother of all banned religious symbols in the oil kingdom: the cross.
Ah the irony of a letter derived from the Phoenician alphabet being discriminated against by Arabs.
What about all the fortune seekers? How do they propose to mark their treasures in that vast desert? I mean really, W marks the spot?

And some of the Jester's commentors are 'worried' about some math symbols. I wouldn't worry too much though, I am not sure they have discovered them yet.

The question is, do they deliver?

Catholic World News : "Confessional car" designed for tourists' needs

Hello, is this the Confessional Car? Good, I would like to order on large mortal whopper, with a few venials on the side. Light on the penance though. I can explain when you get here.

You guarantee 30 minute delivery right? Okay, cuz we are busy you know.

Delivery or pickup? Delivery us from evil of course.

Monday, January 15, 2007

question for my readers

Has anyone else noticed their priest or deacons "doing the dishes" recently.
This is regarding the end of the indult for purification of the sacred vessels after Communion which has allowed the extraordinary ministers of Holy Communion to help cleanse cups and plates.
I have noticed it since the beginning of January and am wondering if the bishops have instructed the change nationally.  I know Gerald has posted on the response from the LA Archdiocese.

Friday, January 12, 2007

what SHE said

OpinionJournal - Peggy Noonan on the President's speech

As usual, Peggy said what I wanted to say and says it better than I could even think it in my mind. Just go read it. I won't pick at it like an ungrateful child picks at a fancy dinner.

Just one quote to note:
Richard Holbrooke on PBS: The speech was "an astonishing event. . . . The president is doubling down on every bad bet."


My wife was a bit giddy this morning as she called to tell me the news, Texas Congressman, Ron Paul, Seeks Presidency. It is just exploratory at this point, but this guy is a rock when it comes to what is best for our country.

I will go ahead and give him my early nomination.

Explaining the Mass

A favorite item from Zenit, Liturgical Answers.

Father Edward McNamara looks at Explaining the Mass During Mass. What is allowed and how it should be done. I wish it were done a bit more often. I like a good reminder what should be the focus as my mind tends to wander sometimes.

A Catholic knows it's cold when

As the temperature dips into the low single digits (or below zero according to some), I ran into some particularly Catholic experiences this morning. So here is my "A Catholic knows it is cold when:"
- Your lips freeze to the metal crucifix as you kiss your Rosary for the morning commute.
- You bless yourself with holy ice instead of holy water from the font by the front door.
- You experience an apparition walking by the front yard statue of the Blessed Virgin Mary; she isn't crying, but she appears to be shivering.
- The Rosary swinging from the rear view mirror chips ice off the windshield as you slam on the brakes.
and the number one way to know it is cold (not exclusive to Catholics)
- The environmentalists stop talking about global warming.

Thursday, January 11, 2007

Excuse me

But I consider these quite funny.


Others worth noting, "Let Lying dogs sleep" with a picture of the Clintons.

Killing communication

Or perhaps, They prefer you to be in the dark. I what could be termed The Darkest Hour of their First Hundred Hours, it looks like the demos don't want you to be informed.

Read the AFA ActionAlert on what the Senate is trying to pass. Once that gets you fired up, read the entire Review of Senate Bill 1

It sure seems to be targeting the small grassroots organizations that work so hard to keep the voters informed. It specifically exempts the large lobbyist types and they large corporations.

What it targets is
any organization that encourages 500 or more members of the general public to contact Congress
Blogs might even get caught in this mess. (those that have a bit more readership than here anyway.) Not sure on the technical language, but it seems broad enough to go after anyone posing a threat.

Wednesday, January 10, 2007

Working together

It is good to see that the new Demo Congress and Bush are working together. (personally, I long for gridlock.)

Minimum wage boost races through House

All those former small business owners can now join the military as the look to be hiring:

Bush adding 21,500 troops to Iraq force

Of course, being sent to Iraq is probably less risky than owning your own small business these days. At least the bleeding heart liberals would pretend to feel your pain.

Warning: Don't read the first article on a queasy stomach. You might get ill reading the sappy warm fuzzies with no filling like:
"For 10 years the lowest-paid Americans have been frozen out," said Rep. George Miller

"The little guy is not going to be forgotten any longer," said Rep. Bill Pascrell

Tuesday, January 09, 2007

Filling that incessant need

Sub Voce: Ministry Pins for Sinners via the Curt Jester

a bit of a humorous look at the need for people who want to be recognized. Seems like the stronger the dissent, the more re-assuring they need that they are really somebody. Perhaps the further they are from the truth, the more they need approval.

"I am not defined by what I am, but please say you like me!"

Monday, January 08, 2007

couldn't resist

From SPuN on Tony Romo - CBS

funding death

Pro-Lifers: Reconsider Embryonic Stem Cell Research Vote Over Amniotic Find
researchers have been able to successfully manipulate stem cells found in the amniotic fluid of a pregnant woman that have many properties of embryonic stem cells.

They have been able to grow the cells into various tissue types -- the big benefit often cited for embryonic cells -- but without the tumors that accompany the injected of embryonic cells or the destruction of human life needed to obtain them.

this sounds like a win-win for everyone. Except those that make a living off killing babies. Oh and those that make a living of bilking taxpayers to support the baby killers.

Funny how the ESCR folks keep promising results, yet they have to keep begging for more tax dollars to fund their work. If they produced results, the science would pay for itself.

Friday, January 05, 2007


Public library discarding the classics *

Dom discusses an article about a library discarding classics because of space. And he wonders if they aren't just leading the way into the digital book age? With tools such as LibriVox and Project Gutenberg and the new Sony Reader, are Libraries ready to be slimmed and trimmed?

And if so, why is Coeur d'Alene still trying to build a mega-million dollar monstrosity at a very inconvenient downtown location? And after seeing some of the art they are considering, I think they maybe should re-think.

A good 10 to begin the new year.

10 rules for handling disagreement like a Christian

The Catholic Voice - In His Light, Bishop Allen H. Vigneron's Column

This is a great reminder for us all, especially those involved in "debates" in the blogosphere. I have slowly been learning some of these on my own, but the good bishop gives us 10 rules to help us act like Christians, even when we disagree.

1. The Rule of Charity: “Charity is primary.”

2. The Rule of Publicity: “Think with the mind of the Church.”

3. The Rule of Legitimate Freedom: “What the Church allows is not to be disallowed.”

4. The Rule of Catholic Freedom: “There’s something for everybody, but not everything is for everybody.”

5. The Rule of Modesty: “Not all of my causes are God’s causes.”

6. The Rule of Integrity: “To do evil in order to accomplish good is really to do evil.”

7. The Rule of Realism: “Remember that Satan is eager to corrupt my efforts to build up the Kingdom, and he’s smart enough to figure out a way to do it.

8. The Rule of Mystery: “Not all the habits and attitudes which belong to a society governed by a representative democracy are appropriate in the Church.”

9. The Petrine Rule: “Nobody ever built up the Church by tearing down the pope.”

10. The Eschatological Rule: “The victory is assured; my job is to run out the clock with style.”

Not quite sure on the wording for #10. But I would agree in principle. And I would add to #9 "or bishop." We must get over openly tearing apart our bishops. No matter if they don't live up to our standards. The latest "This Rock" magazine has a great article on this (more later)

Tip to Dom.

Thursday, January 04, 2007

Movie Review: The Nativity

We took the all the kids to see The Nativity in the theater last night.  It wasn't crowded, in fact our family made up over half the audience.  Glad that was the case, I hate to annoy other movie goers by talking, but our kids are accustomed to talking during movies.  I think that is in part because I do my best to verbalize the movie for my blind son.  So the others think they are free to ask questions too, which can be a good thing, but it can get annoying right quick for anyone else in earshot. 
I enjoyed the movie.  It had a few distinctly non-Catholic items, but overall it portrayed the story very well.  It even interjected bits of humor without ruining the sacredness of the scenes.
The issues I had with it pertain mostly to the portrayal of Mary and to the visits by the Angel Gabriel.  It seemed the unshaven and curly haired Gabriel looked a bit too much like a Hollywood Hunk and not quite angelic.  I believe angels are beautiful, but they should be beautiful in a Godly way, or to put it simply; someone a man can think is beautiful and not just "hot" in the eyes of a woman.  But I can forgive Hollywood for not understanding the true meaning of beauty, after all, most Catholics don't get it either.  Also I wasn't fond of the way his voice first came to Mary in the wind.  It sort of left the "Hail, favored one" as a unintelligible windy voice before she saw Gabriel.  And although it isn't a deal breaker, I always envisioned him appearing during the night or early morning while Mary was praying.  Perhaps that is the influence of good art.
My biggest complaint about the movie was the way Mary came across as a pouty and almost disobedient teenager.  Her frolicking with the young boys and throwing seeds (that they were supposed to be planting) seemed rather sinful.  More to the point, the wasting seeds in such a poor culture would be highly doubtful. They rounded out her character nicely in the end, but it seemed very "Protestant" to portray Mary as just a better than average teen who courted with rebellion and disobedience to her parents.
Another part that seemed out of place was Mary's pain in childbirth.  Catholic tradition has it that Mary gave birth to Jesus without the pain promised to Eve after the fall.  But my wife pointed out that the verse in Genesis 3 says that pain will be "multiplied" or "greatly increased" which means that there has to be something there to increase.
The movie did great at what this medium is supposed to do.  Bring the person in touch with the sights and sounds of the setting.  Or to make the characters and setting vivid and real.  Herod was suspicious, jealous and evil.  The gluttony of their eating showed in stark contrast to the poverty of the Israelis.  He was obsessed with power and would have killed his own son if he thought him a threat to the throne. 
The hardships and poverty was very real.  Journeying 100 miles on foot over stone and poor roads made me comment how rough that would be to walk that far in that terrain.  My wife mentioned how rough it would be for a pregnant woman to ride a donkey that far. 
A couple of humorous parts involved the three wise men.  The other line I laughed out loud to was when Joseph and his scandalously pregnant wife were leaving for the journey to Bethlehem.  Many people were giving them the judgmental looks or looking away.  Joseph commented, "I think they will miss us."
Overall, it was a very worthwhile film.  The kids liked it and followed along quite well.  And even the slaughter of the Holy Innocents wasn't as bad as some have claimed.  It depicted Herod's troops taking the young boys from their mothers but no bloodshed was seen.  Only screams and crying afterwards.  It reminded me of the way the killing of the Israeli children was done in the animated "Prince of Egypt".  Lots of commotion, lots of crying and some screaming, but it didn't disturb our young children.

"Holy" First Communion

Dom provides a link to another fight over First Communion.  And as usual, the kid gets dragged into a big mess.  I wonder how many of these "examples" retain their faith or remember this as the holy day it is.
One quote I find interesting. 
she wants to fully understand what it means
If she doesn't already understand that, her parents have failed in their duty.
Our 9 year old son is blind and the RE department went out of their way to get a Braille version of the curriculum.  I went to every class with him so as not to burden the instructors who had no clue about Braille.  (I at least have a cursory knowledge and was able to help him find his place.)
But Dom's point is correct.  Parents are too willing to hand over their children and the DREs and leaders are so willing to be elevated to that level of "essential".

Wednesday, January 03, 2007

Fun with science

Saw this on Slashdot.  A fun list of materials that behave outside the norm.  And they do mean outside the norm.   Jesus walked on water, but these guys run on a water and cornflour mixture.  And when they stop, they sink.  The official term is Dilatants. Kinda like slowsand or something.