Friday, November 28, 2008

Disillusioned with people

I find, in these tense days after the election, I am disillusioned with people in general. I don't MEAN to be - I just _am_.

Somehow the church was lame during the election and did NOT specify details on HOW to distinguish between non negotibles so no wonder many Catholics had a tough time.

For example, the Republican views on "immigration" which seem to be focused on poverty stricken Mexicans who have for decades, come here, worked for slave wages, enabling places like Walmart to offer things for cheap or farmers to farm without losing their shirts, are now, suddenly treated like criminals and un ceremoniously deported back to Mexico. When they have done nothing wrong, when they are PART of our economy and when, in many cases LIKE those who work for Walmart, they are paying income taxes (because it's automatically deducted from their paycheck but of course, they cannot be re-embursed at income tax time). The government knows that they are paying income taxes because there is a sizable amount of undocumented tax money which remains unclaimed. These are simple people, family people and church going and now being treated like criminals? Sounds like racism to me (because the Canadians are NOT being treated in such a shabby manner and we are NOT spending millions to build walls on the Canadian border) and racism is one of the five non negotibles that Catholics are asked to consider when voting. (Abortion is another).

I don't have a clue how "immigration" got started but it seems to be vaguely connected with 9/11 ...except the guys who "did" 9/11 were in the USA on green cards so would have NOT qualified as "undocumented" or "illegal". When I ask anyone about this, all I get is "well, drugs come in from Mexico". They come in from Canada also though and the simple people being treated like criminals are NOT the ones transporting the drugs. When I bring this up, no one has an answer. Which is one thing that totally disillusions me. WHY DOESN'T ANYONE EVEN ASK QUESTIONS ABOUT THIS?

My Mexican neighbors are confused .... and if anyone bothered to learn Spanish (it's a beautiful language and knowing it enriches us!) so they could TALK to Mexicans, they would see for themselves. They are asking "what did we do? Why are my friends and family members being suddenly treated like criminals? Everyone is afraid now." How sad is this? In a country which boasts "give me your tired and your poor." Apparently that suddenly doesn't include Mexicans, I guess.

The Democrats have a much better stand on "immigration" with granting amnesty but a horrendous stand on abortion. The Republicans have a great stand on abortion but a horrendous stand on immigration. Where do you draw the line? I don't think it would have been "political" for the church to detail that to their people. I drew the line because abortion is killing 9 humans a minute and whereby "immigration" racism kills a few people, it isn't close to 9 humans a minute. The Mexican Americans voted Democratic because they are tired of living in fear. Can't really blame them.

Why do we have to make this choice? Why are ANY OF THE PARTIES REALLY MORAL in ALL their stands? (well I know the Democrats get millions of bucks from the abortion industry but why are the Republicans so blind about "immigration").

Then there was the story on "The Today Show" about the women priests. They interviewed a woman attorney who said how she had been a "good Catholic" for all these years (like she was doing THE CHURCH a favor) and tried to change the church's stand on ordination of women for all those years and finally got tired of it so she was "ordained" as a "priest" or priest-ESS or whatever she calls herself.

And now, she "celebrates Mass" and disrespects the Lord by not only dressing like a priest but by serving Communion to her followers (so she's misleading others). She doesn't give a hang that what she's telling them is Sacrament IS NOT or how she's misleading others down HER primrose path and denying THEM the REAL Body and Blood of Jesus. I mean if you think of it... HOW DARE SHE disrespect God like that? She reminds me of a passage in Timothy which talks about this very type of thing:

But understand this: there will be terrifying times in the last days. People will be self-centered and lovers of money, proud, haughty, abusive, disobedient to their parents, ungrateful, irreligious, callous, implacable, slanderous, licentious, brutal, hating what is good, traitors, reckless, conceited, lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God, as they make a pretense of religion but deny its power.
(2 timothy 3:1 ff)

And what happened to HER CHANGING (instead of changing the church according to HER EGO). Just where did we forget that EGO means "EASING GOD OUT"?

Besides her misleading what looked like 100 or more people into coming to her blasphemous Mass, the "Today Show" LOVED it! Another chance to laugh at the Catholic church and how stupid we are for having only male priests. Nevermind that JESUS never ordained his Mother. Is this attorney so foolish as to think that IF Jesus wanted women priests, His Immaculately Conceived Mother would have been the first to be ordained?

To those idiots who want women priests and say the church is unfair, I ask them "Well, maybe you can answer this - God must also be unfair because you know He only allows WOMEN to be Mothers so why is that?"

Of course in our immoral depraved age, motherhood is not respected but actually, I consider it on an equal basis, RESPECT-WISE as being a priest because in being a mother you are allowed to partake in God's Creation of a new life and also, you have a special closeness to children AND Grandchildren which men do not have. God and His Church are NOT unfair. We each have our incredibly awesome things we can do. We women can be mothers and men can be priests. Why should men OR women have it all?

You see, if people bothered to PRAY or to just RESPECT GOD and His church, all of this would be a real no brainer and they wouldn't even waste time worrying about how women cannot be priests and men cannot be mothers.

(In a speech on youtube, Ms Via states that she was so religious from childhood and also aware of the "injustice toward women". Amazing how she forgets that the most highly thought of individual human in the Catholic church next to Jesus, is Jesus' Mother, A WOMAN. When I listened to this speech (all 58 minutes of it), it truly amazed me that she's a PhD and she knows so little. No wonder our son - also a PhD - reminds me that especially in the case of folks like her, PhD can mean "Piled higher and deeper" Rather interesting are what she calls "radicalizing events", those which led her out of "being a good Catholic" as she described herself to being ordained and having her own parish. One of which was when she went for her tenure at the Catholic University where she taught, she did not pass the test for "Catholicity" and was asked to leave. Wow, I wonder why? Because she doesn't know what the Catholic church teaches? And the second "Radicalizing event", she tells us, is that she was barred from teaching in a Catholic University by the Bishop when she signed an ad - from "Catholics for a free choice" which stated that abortion was a "moral choice" at times. (It should be noted the "Catholics for a free choice" are neither Catholic NOR into free choice because the only choice THEY believe in, is abortion and they are funded by the abortion industry also. The 129 member organization has a president who makes over 60,000 a year!) Needless to say, I definitely suspect Ms Via's elevator doesn't go to the top floor so to speak, but I think that the Bishops should warn people against individuals like this because they can be confusing if folks do not know any better! I could write a whole blog on HER. Maybe I will.... in the future. By the way, Jane Via, if you do read this, I, as a member of several "IQ" groups, would have to say that one would greatly suspect your brain is somewhat lacking since you have managed to do all this studying and have very little knowledge of Catholic doctrine OR Catholic History. Also be warned that you may be playing with your eternal salvation in order to massage your Ego here on earth. Is it really worth taking those type of risks, Jane? "He whose soul is flat, the sky will cave in on them by and by" Edna St Vincent Millay)

Which brings me to the third group I am disillusioned with and that is the person in the pew. Because the most awful pro abortion people (who are ALREADY WORKING TO UNDO 35 years of work on the part of the pro life movement as we speak) have been elected to office and you know, few seem to care. People are just going about their daily life, worrying about what they are going to buy for their next purchase or what they are going to wear to the next "occasion". While these evil people are opening the door for abortions to exponentially multiply.

Do they think abortions WON'T multiply? Look at Russia which encouraged abortion for many decades and now find themselves as a dying society. The average woman in Russia has had NINE abortions and now that the floodgates were opened a few decades ago, the government is actually trying to STOP the flow of baby killing but finding it very difficult to do.

But no one is even upset about it. The pro life movement has gone into immediate denial mode. "Donate more money" say the emails and letters "so we can continue our good fight" and "we have made a lot of progress and will continue to do so" despite the fact that every last bit of progress they have made is quickly being undone.

I have been told "don't be too hard on the prolife movement" and basically that I'm full of it when I'm understandably alarmed and dismayed.

I feel like I am standing alone. My constant prayer as the darkness is rapidly closing in, seems to be "Holy Spirit, please push the darkness away". I got that from Fr Spitzer on EWTN and it helps. So does the Rosary. But what is very upsetting is that so few seem to see the darkness.

For the time will come when people will not tolerate sound doctrine but, following their own desires and insatiable curiosity, will accumulate teachers and will stop listening to the truth and will be diverted to myths. 2 tim 4:3-4
As the saying goes: "you don't have to be a cannibal to be fed up with people".

Sunday, November 23, 2008

Love MUST be a choice!

I have received via the internet (and seen on TV actually), two stories which are supposed to be inspirational and/or inspire guilt or I'm not sure.

One story is of a man who is the person who raises and lowers a bridge so the trains can cross. One day he takes his son (who is about 5 years old) to work with him. As the father is occupied and the bridge is up to allow a boat to pass, the son climbs down in the underside of the bridge. Then a train comes. The father looks for the son and notices that where the son is, if he lowers the bridge, the son will get crushed. He calls to the son but the child does not hear him. He must now make the agonizing decision of saving his son (by not lowering the bridge) or killing his son by lowering the bridge to save the hundreds of people on the train. He decides in favor of the people on the train and lowers the bridge.

In the second story which I just received, it's the same principle only this time, a father is told his young son has the only pure blood with which they can make a vaccine to cure thousands of people. Ignoring the questionable medical basis of this one - vaccines are generally NOT made from human blood - the bottom line is the same as the first story. The father "donates" the son (after lying to the son and saying he would not allow anything to happen to him) and the son dies and the doctors say basically (though not so bluntly) "oops, we didn't know it would take so MUCH of his blood".

The analogy is supposed to be God the father, giving His Son to die for us. In each story, the apathy of the people who are saved is commented on. "Didn't you know I killed my son to save you?"

If we think about each story, at least, this was MY reaction, it's troubling. Could WE make that decision? To destroy our own kid to supposedly save other lives? I doubt that any of us could do this. So it ends up being a dilemma rather than something which is uplifting. (at least to me).

I have been troubled by these stories every time I've heard them or seen it passed on the internet and recently, realized WHY I've found the story so confusing and so troubling and not really LIKE the sacrifice that Jesus made.

Because there are some things which are very different here and perhaps not religious at all.

First of all, the underlying idea is that by the death of a small innocent, lives can be saved which is not really that far away from the idea of abortion or murder or embryonic stem cell research etc. Certainly NOT a religious idea at all. Quite the contrary.

But secondly, what is REALLY wrong with these stories is that we are being compared to God the Father which is totally inappropriate. We are not God, we are human and God is not us - He is NOT human but infinite. And our creator.

And finally, in the story, the small child has no choice in the matter. In the first, no choice at all - the father makes the choice and in the second, choice based on the idea that it will NOT kill him, the child and choice at an age where free will is not developed yet - hardly more of a choice than in the first story.

I don't know if anyone really, if they think about it, finds these stories inspirational. I know they are often told as inspirational stories.

But these are so different from Jesus. Jesus, unlike God his Father, was/is man as much as He is God. And God did NOT make this choice FOR HIM. God ASKED Him to make the choice of allowing Himself to be sacrificed for the salvation of mankind and He could have said "no" just as any one of us has the free will to say "no". But Jesus, at the age of 33, did NOT say "no". He said "yes". Of His own free will. And that is what is so beautiful because Jesus loved us THAT much as to, though not really wanting to suffer that much, telling the Father that if He "must drink this cup then so be it".

And interestingly enough if we wish to look for analogies, there are many and even a couple in the 20th century... i.e. individual humans who had a choice to make a sacrifice and said "yes" to God much as Jesus did.

One of them was Gianna Beretta Molla, a pediatrician who, if she followed the line of the stories above, would have sacrificed her unborn baby in abortion so she could live and save many lives (as she did in her job as a pedriatrician) as well as be mother to her other 3 children. But instead of following the two above stories and sacrificing her unborn child (when she was found to have cancer of the uterus and require treatment to live), she said "take the child first - save my child".

And the child was born (Gianna just had the tumor removed) and they named the little girl, Gianna, after her mother. Gianna the mom, died a week later but to the end had no regrets.

On the morning of 21 April 1962 Gianna Emanuela was born by Caesarian section. Despite all efforts and treatments to save both of them, on the morning of 28 April, amid unspeakable pain and after repeated exclamations of "Jesus, I love you. Jesus, I love you", the mother died of septic peritonitis. She was 39 years old.

Like Jesus whom she followed, she said yes to sacrificing HERSELF and although one might say, this was hardship on her children and husband (and it likely was), these children and certainly Gianna the daughter (who later became a pediatrician like her mother and has saved many lives) would say, could a mother love any more than this? (not withstanding that many of us believe Gianna is in Heaven praying for all of us - she was proclaimed saint by the Catholic church a few years ago).

I think it is really important to make this distinction and to clarify these confusing stories which compare US to God the Father.

Sacrificing someone ELSE's life (without THEIR choice being involved) not only does not necessarily save anyone but is a decision God would NOT ask us to make in the framework of the scenarios given in the stories and even in the Bible when Abraham is willing to sacrifice his son, God stops him. A pretty clear message.

But sacrificing OUR OWN lives is another story. Perhaps for some of us, that might be the ultimate act of love, to follow our Savior in His Choice to do this. And for many of us, to read about this IS a great source of inspiration.

What did Gianna the daughter (pictured here with her father and Pope John Paul II) feel about this sacrifice that her mother made to save her life? Here is what she wrote when a church dedicated a stain glass window to a rendering of her mother:

I am very honoured and moved to be here today with all of you and I thank Fr. Thomas Rosica with all my heart, and his staff, the parishioners and friends of the Newman Centre who are present at this important ceremony. Three days ago, when Padre Tom showed me the church windows for the first time and I saw my mother smiling, I was filled with joy and so pleased, because I have always imagined her in this way, knowing that the message of her life couldn’t be represented better.

Every moment of her entire existence was a real testimony of Christian love and faith, lived concretely and with joy in everyday life: as a young girl, as a fiancée and wife, as a mother and doctor. She always trusted in Divine Providence and she has crowned her exemplary life in the name of a love without measure. She is always with me and since the momentous day of April 24, 1994, I have felt myself to be part of an ever growing family comprised of so many people throughout the world who, like me, pray to her, confide in her, and feel close to her. I believe that this is also the design of Divine Providence, that now I shall never be alone.

Dear Mom, I ask you to fill me and all those who suffer and are in difficulty with your own strength of soul, your hope, your courage to live life to the full. Protect and help all mothers, their families and all who turn to you and entrust their needs to you.

(Imagine praying to a saint who is your Mom!)

Gianna was born on April 21, 1962 which was Holy Saturday, that year and her mother died on April 28, 1962, the eve of what would become Divine Mercy Sunday a few years later. I was received into the Catholic church on April 11, 1963, Holy Thursday, the following year and I truly feel that Gianna's prayers had a lot to do with my OWN conversion...

St Gianna Molla is a saint ESPECIALLY for our times when the lives of children are thought to be so expendable or even sometimes as a way of thinking that destroying their lives can save others (as in the stories of the internet forwards).

Source links:

The story of Dr St Gianna Beretta Molla

Beautiful recounting of the St Gianna story and many photos

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

700 billion dollar bail-out - feeding the hungry would have been bettter use?

A website sent to me by another member of an internet list, suggested that only a small part of the 700 billion dollar bailout, if applied to world hunger, would go a long way to solve the hunger problem. When I saw the title, the premise seemed totally not feasible to me and so, I did not bother clicking the link, much to the chagrin of the person who sent it as he obviously believed it. He commented that the website had led him to believe that the goal of conquering "world hunger" was at least, in sight.

However, evidence suggests that this goal is NOT AT ALL in sight and for many reasons. As one scholar I was listening to this am - Fr Mitch Pacwa, SJ, commented, a lot of world hunger is caused by bad governments including the fact that a goodly part of the AID sent them, never gets there and/or gets stopped by bureaucracy etc. Right now according to the mass media (which we KNOW is NOT friendly to the Catholic church to put it mildly), 80 percent of the world's hungry are being FED BY the Catholic church. And as we know, if a proposed solution to the "financial crisis" had a hard time getting through Congress, we can be assured that a proposal of even a part of that money to feed the hungry would CERTAINLY die in committee! :) The bottom line of the article was not, I suspect to seriously propose a solution to "world hunger" but rather to point out what a bad move, the 700 billion dollar bail-out was.

While I agree the 700 billion buck "bail-out" was a bad move (knee jerk moves are seldom advantageous), I will point out that such measures had been previously tried and were highly successful (for example in my state) although on a smaller scale AND everyone was confused about it and thought perhaps it might help (I interviewed a few individuals with expertise in both accounting -finance and the stock market, in my efforts to try and understand it myself).

Bush proposed it to Congress because he figured if he didn't save the day quickly, the election was surely lost but the measure was supported almost in totality by Congressional Democrats and only blocked by Conservative Republicans in Congress (why it didn't pass the first time around) who turned out to be correct about it not being a good idea. However, enough of them cracked on the second time around and the bill passed, succeeding to only further lubricate the mortgage companies rather than making much of a difference in the financial mess.

McCain, many GOPs thought later, should have supported the Republicans opposing the bill instead of making a big dramatic thing of "stopping his campaign", standing up whatever talk show he was scheduled on while taking an interview with Katy Couric two blocks away from the talk show location, a faux pas which many talk show hosts of course, had a field day with, on a nightly basis for some time after.

But of course, hindsight is 20/20 as we all know. At the time, everyone was panicky and so typically American, wanted a quick fix which they should know by now, really doesn't exist... beefing up the mortgage companies is NOT going to get most Americans to start living within their means which was one of the sources of the 'problem' in the first place. One news person opined that the media might have actually spiked the downward trend in the market because people "hearing" we were facing a so called "depression" sold stock in record numbers which is of course, what causes, at least in part, a dive in the market.

Our stock market has been far from stable for years and in the Clinton era while there was inflation and recession at the same time, some of the same problems existed even though the media did NOT report much on it -they don't during a Democratic regime since as high as 90 percent of media personnel describe themselves as "middle of the road" liberals but some estimates opine that 70 percent of media personnel are actually, far left liberals. (REF: Bernie Goldberg: BIAS, NY 2002 and Ann Coulter: HOW TO TALK TO A LIBERAL, NY, ? both of whom, have actually researched the number of stories in the mass media on several subjects during Clinton's term and during Bush's term and compared. Goldberg, who worked as a news anchor for CBS for 22 years, describes himself as a "middle of the road" liberal Democrat while Coulter is, of course, a far right Conservative but both agree on this subject.)

And there was a higher rate of unemployment during the Clinton years also... a steady 7.5 percent (as high as it STILL has not gotten lately). Last I heard it was 6.5 percent.
It should be pointed out that the unemployment rate may not be accurate as it is figured from those collecting unemployment insurance and that runs out in 6 months and people fall off the rolls whether they have obtained jobs or not.

Back in Clinton days, I was one of the unemployed (which is why I researched it) and knew several in my field, i.e. software design, a type of work which was more and more, being "outsourced", who had been out of work for far longer than 6 months. In fact, one gent I knew had lost his job in 1992 and never found another - he was 58 and "attritioned" from an aerospace company - had worked his way up to some sort of system administrator without a degree so when he was "promoted to the street", his credentials did not serve him well. He did not have the programming skills to take a job as a software developer on contract so he became a "house husband" (and rather depressed) while his wife, a nurse - RN, took over the duty of bringing home the income. I actually knew several like that. And none of this was EVER reported by the media UNTIL Bush came to office and then, of course, we heard stories on a daily basis about how bad the economy was.

But it was a no brainer that a bad economy does not happen suddenly in the span of a day between the outgoing Democratic president and the incoming Republican president. Well, I guess the media thought folks would buy it and angry liberals bought it in spades.

As an FYI, I was sure one of the advantages of a liberal Democrat being elected to president would be a returning to peace, because Conservatives are supposed to be, more sensible than liberals and also patriotic enough (how old fashioned) to SUPPORT the president in solidarity now that the election is over. (Fr Mitch, affore mentioned, defined solidarity as recognizing our mutual "human-ness" and while not accepting what we may feel to be immoral ideas, supporting the president on a HUMAN level and helping whenever we can).

I was wrong though because many Conservatives are whining as loud and unreasonably as liberals were doing, after Bushie got into office.

There are times I think the number of THINK-ing folks regardless of what their IQ scores were in school, is fastly dwindling to a handful and somehow, the concept of large numbers of humans with power and purposeful activity and a significant amount of anger and frustration, who do not THINK is more scary than any one politician's policies OR the 700 billion bucks we flushed down the toilet, borrowed from God-knows-where-I-don't-even-want-to-speculate.

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

Christians could have voted morally but they didn't

Seems not enough Christians voted morally, their greed overcoming their moral compass at the sound of Obama's empty promises. We could have made a statement in this election. We could have pushed back the darkness but instead too many of us SUPPORTED the darkness. Just like those Christians who voted for Hitler, Castro and others.

Seems we never learn.

"He who does not study history is doomed to re-live it"

Not all change is good. Prepare for higher taxes and less money. No country has EVER taxed itself to economic security. And this country may NO LONGER HAVE the protection of God since we are killing 9 unborn babies per minute and we just elected a man for president who is joined at the hip with the evil Planned Parenthood, and financed by their blood monies to the tune of 10 million dollars and it seems, NOT ENOUGH OF US EVEN CARE.

Fr Corapi of EWTN said it well. "If you elect immoral politicians, you get what you deserve"

Obama needed the Catholic Vote to win. He got enough of it, it seems. Some polls were saying that 60 percent of Catholics were planning to vote for Obama.

Where did we fail? Was it the big "" website which didn't really carry a strong message because the creators did not want to SELF FUND IT but instead insisted on asking for donations? Many Bishops spoke out but in the parish I attend, I did not hear ONE sermon advocating the importance, the morality of voting pro life. I suspect many other Catholics did not hear many pro life sermons also.

And now, Fr Pavone of priests for life has his BIG meeting for "strategy" now. What strategy? Get it Fr, Many Catholics don't care because they have NO MORAL COMPASS left. They cannot see past their pocketbooks. Do you really think that shouting over and over at the choir is going to do anything to stop abortion?

Fr writes on his website:

Americans have made a grave mistake in electing Barack Obama to the presidency. Yet America herself remains great and is not a mistake, which is why so many of her citizens will continue, with even greater energy and determination, to defend her founding principles.

Defend our founding principles? We just flushed them down the toilet, Fr Pavone, by our choice at the polls.

The pro life movement, hate to say it, is WORTHLESS, WEAK, INEFFECTIVE. Too many in the movement have made that their job so that if abortion ever became illegal, they would lose their livelihoods. And in 35 years and 48 MILLION humans dead, the pro life movement has done little to change anything.

I remember an African American minister speaking at a HLI convention in the mid-90's saying that one of the reasons abortion still existed was "WICs" (Weak Ineffective Churches). And here it is 13 years later and his words are still ringing true.

Maybe we need to flush the pro life movement down the toilet with the principles we just flushed.

We don't need the pro life movement because it seems when it comes to REAL action, it's constipated. We don't need "new strategies" or more speeches to the choir. We don't need the emotional rallies, the marches or the rest. Probably all we need is A LOT of people praying the Rosary daily for the end to abortion and when the time comes, Catholics making a moral choice of a candidate who will build the "culture of life" and not promote the "culture of death". Of course that does not give anyone employment, or an emotional high or a "feel good" for little output, feeling. IT JUST WORKS.

I will hope and pray that God who can overcome all, will help those of us who DID vote morally.

At least we can live with our consciences.