For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places. ---Ephesians 6:12

"The age of casual Catholicism is over; the age of heroic Catholicism has begun. We can no longer be Catholics by accident, but instead must be Catholics by CONVICTION." ---Fr. Terrence Henry TOR, Franciscan University of Steubenville

Tuesday, June 30, 2009

When The Government Controls Health Care...

A humorous look at what to expect when... okay IF (though you know that Obama as well as the Democrats who control both houses of Congress will get their way) we get stuck with Government controlled health care.

From NetRightNation.

Monday, June 29, 2009

Media Ignoring New Duke Rape Case

It could be due to the over-hype and conclusion jumping done on the previous Duke rape case in which Duke Lacrosse players were accused of such a crime, or it is more likely due to the fact that the perp is a gay parent who adopted the victim, a young boy. Hmmm. Dr. Mike Adams has the details in his Townhall column HERE.

Two Articles Well Worth Your Read

Irwin Stelzer, the director of economic policy studies at the Hudson Institute (a think tank with another notable named Robert Bork), has written a wonderful piece for the Times UK Online called The Four-Pronged Attack On Our Future Prosperity. He lists them as energy policy, health care policy, trade-union resurgence, and fiscal madness. See what else he has to say.

From Kimberley Strassel, an article in the WSJ called The Climate Change Climate Change in which she points out the counter trends against global warming hysteria legislation in the Australian Senate.

A snippet:

[Among the many reasons President Barack Obama and the Democratic majority are so intent on quickly jamming a cap-and-trade system through Congress is because the global warming tide is again shifting. It turns out Al Gore and the United Nations (with an assist from the media), did a little too vociferous a job smearing anyone who disagreed with them as "deniers." The backlash has brought the scientific debate roaring back to life in Australia, Europe, Japan and even, if less reported, the U.S.]

A ray of hope for change? It appears it will get in motion here before we can stop it.

Sunday, June 28, 2009

As If By Chance?...

On most Sundays it is next to impossible for me to go to Mass when I am working (driving my semi) out on the road. Even though I drive all over the country in the lower 48 states and bits of Canada, it is hardly worth trying to find a Catholic church with semi-truck parking because they simply don't exist. But on those rare occasions when everything works out perfectly, I find a truck stop nearby that will allow me to drop my trailer (many no longer allow this since 9-11 as they fear one loaded with explosives will level said truck stop), so I can bobtail (tractor without trailer attached) to a parking lot close enough to church and then walk to Mass. But I only do this after I go to confession to put myself in a state of grace in order to receive Holy Communion. The sacrament of Penance is usually not offered on Sundays, so the only time I ever go to Mass on the road is Saturday vigil just after confession.

So it seemed as if by pure chance that I had a load to St. Louis which delivered this morning...early... and was assigned a re-load that would pick up much later today, allowing me time to attend Mass...somewhere hopefully. And it seemed by pure chance that I was in a city whose Cathedral is one I'd been wanting to see for quite some time. Pope Paul VI referred to it as the most beautiful in the New World. After going online I found that by pure chance the Cathedral Basilica of St. Louis offers the Sacrament of Penance on Sundays just before the Noon Mass.

As if by pure chance the place I delivered to has a large lot next door where I could drop my trailer, which I did, allowing me to bobtail (see above) to somewhere near the cathedral...hopefully. And as if by pure chance I-64 was closed just after Kingshighway Blvd., allowing me to exit North to Lindell blvd with no low overpasses or truck restrictions. And although there was no parking lot within view of the Cathedral that would allow semi bobtail trucks, I did find a gas station/convenience store/Laundromat with plenty of room to if by pure chance. But then I had to get permission to leave the truck there. And as if by pure chance the guy behind the plexi-glass had no problem whatsoever with the idea, so long as I got back by 2pm when the boss showed up. So I parked and walked.

The line to the confessional was long, but well worth the wait. I got in and out just in time for Mass. And as if by pure chance the celebrant of today's Mass was Bishop Hermann, who wrote a great pro-life homily in January which I posted HERE in its entirety, and who won my undying admiration last November for announcing he would be willing to die to end abortion (read that HERE). And although for some reason it didn't occur to me to take out my camera from its case and take his picture (D'Oh!) after Mass in the vestibule, I did have the presence of mind to walk up to him then and shake his hand. He seemed pleased when I told him I had posted his homily.

It was a magical start to a beautiful day. And I don't care in the least that my re-load fell through and I'm likely stuck here until tomorrow. I am still feeling the glow of this morning's events which occurred all as if by chance.... But I don't believe in chance, you see. I believe I was being led by the Spirit to find opportunities to attend Mass on the road. And since God helps those who help themselves, once I made the attempt in a direction He was pleased with He made the rest fall into place. And until you have faith in God, you will probably never understand what I'm talking about. So if you choose to count on chance (luck), coincidence, or your own abilities (*snort*) to get you through life, well,... good luck with that.

Feel free to click on the images to make them large. At 8 megapixels, they will show up in great detail.

Friday, June 19, 2009

Lithuania Stands Its Ground Against Gay Lobby...Poland Soon To Follow

Years ago a University Of Illinois psychology professor told our class that in 1974 the APA (American Psychiatric Association) removed homosexuality from the list of disorders in the seventh publication of the DSM-II (Diagnostic And Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, 2nd version) in hopes that violence against gays would lessen. The professor said that while at first he thought it damaging to the credibility of the industry that a classification would be altered for political reasons, that violence against homosexuals did in fact go down in the late 1970s and that the change in the Manual is what helped cause it. What this professor of mine did not consider beyond good intentions is that this was one of the first trips down the slippery slope of not only legitimizing homosexuality as a normal behavior, but of promoting it as an ideal behavior not only to adult society but to impressionable young people, too.

I bring this up because there are a couple of civilized nations in Eastern Europe who are not buying into such political correctness. The first one is Lithuania, whose government passed a law this week forbidding the promotion of homosexual propaganda in schools. Promotions of violence and suicide were also mentioned in the ban, which passed the Parliament 67 to 3 with 4 abstaining. The president has yet to sign it into law, but is expected to do so soon.

From MP Narkiewicz:

“Members of parliament came to a conclusion, that behavior which has a destructive effect on children cannot be tolerated. The present situation in the media influenced that,” Narkiewicz said in an interview. “We see growing violence in the media, to which minors have access. We also see attempts to present homosexuality or bisexuality in a positive way, not only in entertainment programs or in talk shows, but also in educational shows. While the fact that these kinds of behaviors are against natural law and Christianity, is largely forgotten.”

Opponents of the law claim it violates free speech and promotes discrimination.

Poland is expected to pass their own version of this in the not so distant future. I applaud them for it.

No one is suggesting that violence against homosexuals is okay or that homosexuals should be discriminated against. But when we cease to see heterosexuality as the more desirable of the two conditions, then where is our society headed? At the very least, the birthrate in westernized countries will be a major factor in the continued existence of our culture as well as our very freedom and way of life. The alternative does not suit either hetero- or homosexuals in western nations. See an earlier post HERE.

And why should any nation's youth, already undergoing a confusing period in their lives, be subjected to such promotions, or be encouraged to experiment sexually in ways which could psychologically damage them for the rest of their lives? Ask our nation's gay lobbies. They will do anything to make their own lifestyles seem more mainstream...

And to avoid any faith-based arguments on this issue, please refer to the Catechism of the Catholic Church #2357-2359 and #2396. Pick up a Bible, too, and read Genesis 19:1-29, Romans 1:24-27, 1 Corinthians 6:10, 1 Timothy 1:10, etc...

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

"Bring An End To This False Prophet, Obama" --- Jon Voight

Here is the speech by actor Jon Voight everyone is talking about. How refreshing it is to hear someone from Hollywood, who isn't afraid of having doors of opportunity slammed in his face, stand up and tell it like it is and take Obama to task, not only on how he got elected President but how he plans to run this country off a cliff in four years or less.

I have been rather quiet for the past few months on Obama, not hitting him nearly as hard as I might considering the embarrassment he has caused this country in his travels and at home. But until recently I have thought it a useless endeavour trying to convince the overzealous and insanely fanatical that Obama was a dangerously poor choice for Commander-In-Chief until these nuts have personally felt the pain and anguish from their irresponsible decision. A good case can be made that until you do, nothing in the world will change their minds. They cannot see what a vapid, self-absorbed opportunist Obama is because they have invested so much emotion and religious fervor in the idea of him, even after viewing his Middle East speech...or any other speech in which Obama relates his OWN personal's all about ME, babes...

As time presents itself, I will be hitting Obama along with so many others...until the Main Stream Media either gives in and acknowledges his stupidity, or goes bankrupt from lack of subscribers.

(hat tips: Blonde Sage and No Sheeples)

"On A Summer Day In 1944...The Soldiers Came..." 65 Years Ago Today

In the weeks leading up to Memorial Day I watched the entire World At War series, which has held up quite well since 1974, IMHO, and saw in both the first and last installments the reference to the death of Oradour-sur-Glane. It was a small village in France over 1,000 years old, but it only took the SS troops who passed through it few of hours to round up the population of 600+ and execute them. The town has been preserved uninhabited since that fateful day, June 10th 1944, ...65 years ago today.

I have included the first nine and one half minutes of the first hour installment of World At War, but you only need watch until the title sequence. Then below is a video of Oradour-sur-Glane today put together by someone who visited the site and was so moved. I just couldn't post one without the other. You will be glad you made the time to watch the one below in its entirety. It's that good.

But what can one say after seeing this? Never fight a war again under any circumstances? Or perhaps, this is why pre-emptive war is so necessary? War will always be with us, unfortunately, until ALL of mankind figures out the true cost of such undertakings. You cannot simply have one side who gets it and the other doesn't. That's what we have today, and had at the start of WW2. And it resulted in appeasement on one side and emboldened bullying on the other. Welcome to today. I display this to remind ourselves that the price of freedom isn't free but quite heavy. And not just for soldiers, but for civilians, too. And the earlier you deal with a situation, like stopping Hitler at Czechoslovakia or earlier (which we should have done), the fewer Oradour-sur-Glanes we will have. And there were many back then...

Sunday, June 7, 2009

The Remains Of The Day...

After Pentecostal Celebrations (seen in post below this one) my friend Kevin and I drove down to Washington D.C. both to see the sites/sights, and to have lunch with an old friend of Kevin's, Michael Fumento (author of several books, blogger, lawyer, etc...) in Georgetown (see pic on left).

After a quick lunch and quicker picture, Kev and I were off to the Immaculate Conception National Shrine of DC (see pics below) which looks to be big enough to encapsulate 2 Philadelphia Basilicas or perhaps 3 St. Patricks of Harrisburg. The crypt downstairs is mighty impressive, but the cathedral itself is truly stunning (if you like Jesus with blond hair and blue eyes, I am impartial to this).

Then we were off to the National Mall, or near it, for dinner at Occidental at the Willard. But first we had to stop by this little gift store where they had a life-sized cardboard cut-out of President Obamania standing outside, which presented an opportunity for effigial eye-gouging by Kevin (see pic below). Then we enjoyed some rather expensive bread and circus ($150+) for two before advancing to the White House for more effigious expressions (by request only). Then we got drenched in the rain and left.

Friday, June 5, 2009

At Long Last!...Confirmation At Pentecost!

At the original Pentecost, the one mentioned in The Acts of the Apostles, the Holy Spirit descended to those apostles in tongues of fire which rested upon each one of them. As a result of this, each apostle spoke a different tongue so that he could go abroad and confess boldly the name of Christ. Then the apostle Peter explained it all to those around him, and as a result of this 3,000 were converted to Christianity that day. All who believed in Christ were together and had all things in common...

At my own Pentecostal Confirmation this past Sunday at St. Patricks Cathedral in Harrisburg, PA, a successor of the Apostles, The Most Reverend Kevin C. Rhoades, Ninth Bishop of Harrisburg, and five priests dressed in red robes celebrated both the birthday of the Catholic Church and the Sacrament of Confirmation for myself and several others in the Harrisburg Diocese. When my forehead was anointed with Chrism oil and I confessed with my mouth in agreement (Amen!) with Bishop Rhoades that I was now sealed in the Holy Spirit, I felt such joy, elation, and peace I could hardly contain myself. Without ruining the solemnity of the occasion (I hope), I gave a mini-high-five to my RCIA leader on my way back to my seat. Then I got on my knees and washed the incense out of my eyes with tears of joy, for what should have been done at age 13 and was finally done at 45. Better late than never... I have posted on my journey at length HERE and HERE.

When Communion time came minutes later I stood and nodded to my mother, who had taken the train in from Chicago, now sitting several rows back and observing me for the first time taking Holy Communion. To this day I cannot explain why I had refused it back when I was 7 years old, much to her anger and chagrin. But she nodded back to me this time and smiled wryly, knowing I had already taken my first at Easter Vigil earlier this year. My long-time friend and college roommate, Kevin Gleeson, who also helped me out late last year with this blog, stood with me as my Confirmation Sponsor, with his right hand on my shoulder as I was anointed with Chrism and named Augustine.

After Mass, the Bishop, a man of the people, stood for a good 45 minutes to an hour shaking hands and posing for pictures for anyone who wanted them. For me he blessed my Confirmation Rosaries and stood patiently for SEVERAL pictures. Leaving the Bishop at the Cathedral, we walked to Molly Brannigans for good Irish eats and great Guinness on tap where I sat glowing among the seven friends and relatives who traveled from as far as Oklahoma to join the celebration. At the end of the day we took dessert at Rita's for their great gelati and Italian Ice. It was an exceptionally good day, to say the least.

Here are the rest of the pics from that day. As usual, please feel free to click on the image to make it much larger: