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Friday, 18 May 2012

Just wondering about budgeting

Several post day again. I just have a question. When a family experiences financial difficulties, do we not cut back on expenses, cutting dinners out, vacations, new clothes or jewelry, other luxury items, and even budgeting on the food, lights, heat, and daily needs? So, why can't nations do this? Just wondering....

As a teacher, I need to stand before God on my judgement day and hear His verdict on my teaching and example

LifeSiteNews has shown the depth of the rot in Catholic higher ed in some universities in a small but excellent snapshot of articles on schismatics in the Church. Check it out.  Hubris.....on the part of these academics lead many students to put their souls in danger. I would not want to be a teacher standing in front of Pure Justice and Love and be told how many young ones I had led to sin, and even eternal death.

 A snippet--“[Cardinal Timothy] Dolan and the United States Catholic Conference are misrepresenting ‘Catholic teaching,’ and are trying to present their idiosyncratic minority view as the ‘Catholic position,’ and it is not,” said said Daniel Maguire, a Marquette University professor and former priest who supports legalized abortion, according to Catholic World News.
“The bishops will stand with Dolan and the US Catholic Conference, but on this issue, they are in moral schism since most in the Church have moved on [to] a more humane view on the rights of those whom God has made gay.”
Umm, nope, the Bishops are not schism, folks. So, when have we believed that God makes gays---God does not make sin or temptation. Heresy, as well as mushy thinking does not help the conversation. And, by the way, America is not the only country which has seen the exodus of higher education institutions and professors from the Church's Teaching Magisterium.

Of Course, His Eminence is Right...

Tim Stanley on his blog yesterday has a post on a talk given by Cardinal Cormac Murphy-O'Connor on the decline of tolerance for Christianity in Great Britain. Here is the link. 

If you do not follow Dr. Stanley's blog, I recommend it. Part of the post states, 

What (Cardinal) Murphy-O’Connor is really talking about is the decline of Christianity as an institution. His list of complaints are linked to the special privileges that Protestant and Catholic churches have hitherto enjoyed: gay marriage removes the Church’s right to define unions as a sacrament, gay rights subverts its authority in the moral education of children, rules against the wearing of the cross at work undermines the Church as a visible presence. As a Roman Catholic, I’m sympathetic to Murphy-O’Connor’s concerns. But it’s perfectly possible to be a Christian within a society that regulates or proscribes religious practices. The Christians in classical Rome or the Catholics in communist Poland proved that.

Now, I do not always agree with Dr. Stanley, but his points are good and based on an understanding of Catholicism, at least from a historian's point of view. 

Here is more: Our society is intolerant towards faith because it seeks to create an artificial, neutral public sphere that doesn’t preach to individuals about how to lead their lives. The problem is that in rejecting the authoritarian strictures of the established church it also rejects the utilitarian benefits of the Christian message. A society that has no moral point of reference beyond the reason of the individual (and who, in their right mind, would trust that?), or the ever shifting law of the land, is bound towards selfishness and tyranny. With its sexualisation of children, disregard for the sanctity of life and its confusion of desire and happiness, Britain isn’t just squeezing Christianity out of everyday life. It’s also killing itself.

Of course, for those of you who follow my blog, I blame the capitulation of Catholics themselves, who have voted socialist, voted money over morals, and have become soft in the head regarding religion. As I have noted here over and over, British Catholics are increasingly anti-intellectual and therefore, lose the battle of wits and argument in the public sphere. It seems to me that the country needs moral and intellectual Catholic leaders NOW. Of course, His Eminence is right.

Another Timely Re-post from Father Z, November, 2008

We fell asleep.........................................................We will know Gethsemane. I have used this link, as the original from the magazine from Catholic University is no longer online.

from What Does the Prayer Really Say  Posted on  by Fr. John Zuhlsdorf
A reader sent me this from the magazine of the Catholic University of America.
This is from the magazine of Catholic University of America.  My emphases and comments.
Cardinal at CUA: Obama is ‘Aggressive, Disruptive and Apocalyptic’
Posted By Elizabeth Grden On November 14, 2008 @ 7:58 am In News
His Eminence James Francis Cardinal Stafford criticized President-elect Barack Obama as “aggressive, disruptive and apocalyptic,“ and said he campaigned on an “extremist  anti-life platform,” Thursday night in Keane Auditorium during his lecture “Pope Paul VI and Pope John Paul II: Being True in Body and Soul.“
Because man is a sacred element of secular life,” Stafford remarked, “man should not be held to a supreme power of state, and a person’s life cannot ultimately be controlled by government.”
“For the next few years, Gethsemane will not be marginalWe will know that garden,” Stafford said, comparing America’s future with Obama as president to Jesus’ agony in the garden. E2On November 4, 2008, America suffered a cultural earthquake.” 
Cardinal Stafford said Catholics must deal with the “hot, angry tears of betrayal” by beginning a new sentiment where one is “with Jesus, sick because of love.”   [I didn't hear the speech and I don't have the full text.  But I wonder if he isn't in part referring to the betrayal of Catholic teaching both by pro-abortion Catholic politicians and also... it must be said... Catholic voters.]
The lecture, hosted by the Pontifical John Paul II Institute for Studies on Marriage and Family, pertained to Humanae Vitae, a papal encyclical written by Pope Paul VI in 1968 and celebrating its 40 anniversary this year.
Stafford also spoke about the decline of a respect for human life and the need for Catholics to return to the original values of marriage and human dignity.
“If 1968 was the year of America’s ‘suicide attempt,’ 2008 is the year of America’s exhaustion,” said Stafford, an American Cardinal and Major Penitentiary of the Apostolic Penitentiary for the Tribunal of the Holy See. “In the intervening 40 years since Humanae Vitae, the United States has been thrown upon ruins.”
This destruction and America’s decline is largely in part due to the Supreme Court’s decisions in the  life-issue cases of 1973, specifically Roe v. Wade. Stafford asserted these cases undermined respect for human life in the United States.
“Its scrupulous meanness [what a phrase!]  has had catastrophic effects upon the unity and integrity of the American republic,” said Stafford.
Humanae Vitae (“On Human Life”) reaffirms traditional Catholic teachings regarding abortion, contraception and other human life issues. Pope Benedict XVI said in May it is “so controversial, yet so crucial for humanity’s future…What was true yesterday is true also today.”
Monsignor Livio Melina, president of the Pontifical John Paul II Institute for Studies on Marriage and Family, gave the opening address at the lecture and spoke about the importance of agape love to gain knowledge.
“Love itself is a form of knowledge, and this knowledge cannot be objectified,” said Melina. “It is a unique relationship between the believer and God.”
Stafford said the truest reflection of the love between the believer and God is that of the relationship between husband and wife, and that contraceptive use does not fit anywhere within that framework.
According to Stafford, the inner dynamic of a spousal relationship is much like the body itself, which ‘speaks’ in terms of masculinity and femininity.
“The experience of love introduces us in a specific way to moral knowledge,” added Melina.
If we will know Gethsemene, we will also have the consolation of seeing the Lord conformted by angels… if we do not fall asleep.

A Repeat of a Bishop's Letter from 2008--We Are Facing Ruin in the States

TUESDAY, NOVEMBER 4, 2008 thanks to Catholic Key Blog

Bishop Finn's Election Eve Homily

Homily for the Eve of the Election
November 3, 2008 – St. Therese North Parish
Most Reverend Robert W. Finn
Bishop of Kansas City-St. Joseph

Judges 7:1-22
Revelation 11:19; 12: 1-6, 10.
Matthew 10: 26-33

Dear friends,

Over the next 24 hours, millions of Americans will go to the polls throughout our country to cast ballots for the leaders of our nation, state, and community. We will make decisions about amendments and propositions. This is a wonderful process and privilege of citizenship in a country that values the ideal of freedom.

But let us have no doubt about this: through this process we are more than participants in a democratic process. We are becoming participants in life and death. The candidates we choose do not arise merely on their own. We place them in office.

Clearly, all these leaders are imperfect men and women like ourselves. They will make decisions day by day, and many of the circumstances of war and domestic work are not able to be known until they happen. Nonetheless, when they tell us specifically what they will do and we are therefore able to foresee some of the likely consequences of their leadership we share in the responsibility of their acts. In this sense an election is about even more than physical life and death. It is also about your eternal salvation and mine. This is the first reason to pray. Pray that we will take seriously – that every other voter will take seriously – the meaning of our choices. In a country where we have made choice an absolute, we must remember that underlying every choice is a value; that flowing from every choice is a consequence; that we must give an accounting to God for what we decide.

Our Lord instructs us in the Gospel we have heard, “Do not be afraid of those who kill the body but cannot kill the soul; rather, be afraid of the one who can destroy both body and soul in Gehenna.” The enormity of this election is founded, in part, on the radical determination of some who would lead our country deeper than ever before into the darkness of the culture of death. This is a path that would certainly mean the death of countless more innocent lives. As shepherd of this Diocese I am also deeply saddened by the prospect of the cost in people’s souls, the souls of those who would place a candidate’s promise of economic prosperity above the life of the most innocent of our brothers and sisters.

Most perilous is the fate of those Catholics who, with hardened hearts, decide to create for themselves, and preach to others, a false gospel that the “right” to an abortion must not be challenged, or that the humanity of the child need not be protected.

Most fraudulent are those Catholic leaders, or alliances of Catholics, that insist that the radically evil injustice of abortion need not be directly opposed, but rather, that somehow solving the dilemma of the poor in a sweeping act of charity will cause the foundation of this monstrous crime to crumble.

Why is this so terribly amiss? Because the foundation and cause of abortion is not poverty but a blind disregard for personal responsibility, a heinous denial and disrespect for human life, and an idolatrous worship of personal convenience. This is why even in the wealthy countries of Scandinavia the highest rates of abortions are followed by rampant euthanasia.

Friends, the poor do not hate their children any more or less than the rich. The poison of which abortion is the most dreadful manifestation is the sinful suffocation of selfishness, and it can and does affect all strata of society. Woe to those, particularly Catholics, who dare to try to convince us that their “choice” of a radically pro-abortion leader is within the parameters of conscience. God have mercy on those who exude freely this salve for their partisan cooperators. I fear that they will bear a greater responsibility than most. Against them will come not only the cry of millions of human lives savagely destroyed, but the souls of those they have sucked down with themselves. This is the very definition of scandal, and the reason that so many have spoken out with such urgency to announce the authentic teaching of the Church.

Part of the damage we have been promised is encapsulated in the Freedom of Choice Act, which has been held at bay the last eight years. When all the reasonable limits on abortion, gained in the last 35 years have been summarily swept away: parental notification, waiting periods, counseling and informed consent, the number of those killed will grow by more than 100,000 a year.

The Freedom of Choice Act will mark the beginning of a great persecution against religious liberty, because it will require tax payer money to be used for abortions. You and I will be faced with this legal trial: whether we should pay our taxes making us participants in the slaughter of Innocents or be liable for jail and fines.

And what of our Catholic hospitals? If we are forced to provide such destructive services under the Freedom of Choice Act, we will have to refuse. Catholic health care workers, and other men and women of good conscience, will risk losing their jobs when their conscience exception is lost and they are pressured to participate. I read a letter recently in our daily paper: The man said, “If you don’t want an abortion. Don’t have one.” Under a regime of such change, you and I will not have such an easy choice. By paying, it will become “our abortion.” Lord, have mercy on us, and on our country.

In the light of these clear and present dangers, I chose tonight’s Gospel, in part, because four times it tells us, “Don’t be afraid!” Let us not be afraid, dear flock. You are worth so much to God; more than sparrows, more than an election, more than any man can measure. Our first goal is this: we must get through tomorrow with our eternal souls intact. We know that God will take care of the rest.

A week ago, I wrote our diocese a letter hoping that it would be heard by all as a necessary call to prayer. Many of our pastors read it to their people. Some, I am sure, suffered a bit from doing so. Thank you, dear brave priests.

I also know that it wasn’t heard by all. Let us not be too hard on those who, for fear or even disagreement, have shrunk back even from the call to pray! It takes time for us to learn to carry our burdens, our obedience, our responsibility. I want you all to pray that – at the hour of greatest need – none will step back from the sacrifice that makes us most like Jesus Christ.

In the first reading, God tells Gideon that He is going to win a great victory. So that Gideon and the People of Israel don’t get too big a head, God determines to go against the hundreds of thousands of the enemy with only three hundred men. He even proceeds to choose those who are perhaps the least sophisticated of all, “those who lap up their water like dogs.” God certainly doesn’t pull any punches!

St. Paul says something similar when he announces that God chooses those whom the world considers foolish to shame the wise. (1 Cor 1:27) Dear friends, there is hope for us! God can use us – few and unsophisticated as we are to win the victory of life. God can choose “the lowly and despised of the world, those who count for nothing, to reduce to nothing those who are something.” (1 Cor 1: 28)

I pray this reading from about Gideon’s lopsided battle will remind God and us of the kind of victory He can win for His people. May He grant us this same mercy these days, all in accord with His will and plan; all for the glory of His name; all for the protection of human life.

In the second reading we have the image of Mary, the Woman clothed with the sun, with the moon under her feet and the crown of stars on her head. Mary, we cry out to you, O Mother of life, O Empress of America, O Star of the New Evangelization, O Immaculate patroness of our Diocese and our country: Gather us under the mantel of your maternal love. Mary, Lady of the Rosary whom we have invoked so often, particularly in the last month, “Pray for us sinners!” You, O Queen and our Mother, “despise not our petitions in our necessities, but deliver us from all dangers, O ever-glorious and blessed Virgin.

Dear friends, over the next 24 hours, millions of Americans will go to the polls throughout our country to cast ballots for the leaders of our nation, state, and community. We are called to be participants in life and death. May God guide us to choose life. May He make us his fearless apostles, and use us to construct a civilization of life and love.