Sunday, June 25, 2006

New D.C. Archbishop!

My cousin was officially installed as D.C.'s new Archbishop in a 3 hour ceremony at the Basilica last week. The WaPo had a nice article and a good photo slide show, so if you're interersted, here are links:


Photo show link in the article.

Good stuff...wonder if he'll be made a Cardinal? That would just be too cool. :)

Friday, June 23, 2006

Just when I thought we were done

with DVC, it turns But this is a good article from Monday's USA Today . Entitled "A green light for blasphemy", here it is:

When The Da Vinci Code hit theaters last month, like other Christians around the world I faced a dilemma: to go and see it, or not. At first I considered arguments in favor? mostly so that I could be in the loop culturally, and because the story and settings are so intriguing. But then I started thinking more seriously about what my small vote, my "yea" or "nay" to The Da Vinci Code, would say.
INDEX:Read other stories in the series

I finally made up my mind between innings in our church softball league.

"I'm not going to see that? no way," Brian Williams, the first baseman for our opponents, the Oakland Christian Church team from Oakland Township, Mich., told me as he pounded his mitt getting ready for a new batter. "That's blasphemy, pure and simple. I don't want any part of it."

Brian's matter-of-fact resolve helped me form my own decision. I also passed on the movie. It wasn't because I was worried that seeing Dan Brown's yarn depicted on the big screen would make me question my faith. It wasn't because, by most critics' accounts, Code isn't that good a movie. Nor did I avoid the film because I'd already read a borrowed copy of the book a couple of years ago.

In the end, my reasoning was much more visceral: I just didn't want to be a party? especially a paying party? to what I consider blasphemy. I didn't want to give money, time or any other homage to a film that is not merely heretical but also attacks my faith at its foundational levels and seems fully intent on reshaping how the world views Christ.

The 'B' word

I may eventually forgive Ron Howard and Tom Hanks, two of my Hollywood favorites, for their decisions to direct and star in the movie. I don't for a minute dispute Dan Brown's right to write The Da Vinci Code or to contribute to the theological trend du jour, which seeks to scramble orthodox ideas about Jesus and about Christianity's beginnings. And, true, I almost was seduced by the evangelical leaders who said that I should go see this movie because it would be a convenient way into a discussion of Christianity with non-believers who also had seen it.

But instead, I ended up being much more impressed by the spine displayed by the Catholic Church on this issue: Don't go see it because it is blasphemy, some Vatican officials and church groups have suggested.

Blasphemy is something that no one talks about anymore because it's now considered a backward concern in our relentlessly secularizing Western culture. Basically, blasphemy is demeaning the sacred or the supernatural through speech or action. It was considered such a serious sin that, according to the Book of Jude, the archangel Michael refused to badmouth even the devil. Nor did the ancient Greeks and Romans take it lightly when someone defamed their pantheon.

Nowadays, however, blasphemy is a cottage industry in American entertainment and letters. Whether it's the Code's professor Sir Leigh Teabing, or Madonna in her blood-red shirt pinned to a huge crucifix to kick off her latest concert tour, or even Hollywood's cynical attempts to cash in on The Passion of the Christ with tasteless TV dramas such as The Book of Daniel, Christianity has become a permissible whipping boy. Rather than some kind of new pinnacle of cultural enlightenment and progress, this trend is only another troubling indicator of the disregard for the Judeo-Christian underpinnings of Western society.

'A flaming contradiction'

But that doesn't mean Christians have to take it lying down in the name of a misplaced tolerance and sophistication. If someone came into your home, looked through your family heirlooms and then told wild fabrications about your Aunt Martha and your Uncle Herman, would you welcome it as great entertainment and a saucy enhancement of the family legacy? or would you kick that person out on his rear?

Or if a major motion picture were based on the premise that the iconic emancipator, Abraham Lincoln, secretly was a slave-owning megalomaniac, would you eagerly line up to see it because you owe the other side a look at its interpretation of our 16th president?

That's basically what the Code does. It's "a flaming contradiction to what the Gospels say about Jesus, undermining his deity and his ministry, relegating his significance to the earthbound," as the Rev. Daniel Lewis, my pastor at Troy (Mich.) Christian Chapel, puts it.

Christians are used to the idea of both dishing it out and taking it. The Gospel is a watershed manifesto. Its assertions inevitably divide people. The cross, ultimately, will either offend you? or beckon you.

It's fine if The Da Vinci Code wants to give everyone an alternative view. But Christians don't have to bankroll it.

Dale Buss is a journalist and author in Rochester Hills, Mich. A paperback version of his book, Family Man: The Biography of Dr. James Dobson, will be published this fall.


One of the last posts on the Episcopalians...but here are two articles from Wednesday's Dispatch about the gay bishops decision.

From "Limits on gay bishops rejected":

"[T]he Epicopal Church continued to anger conservatives yesterday by refusing a request to stop electing gay bishops. The move, certain to further alientate the U.S. church from overseas Anglican leaders, prompted the outgoing head of the church to call a special session [Wednesday] in the last-ditch effort at compromise. 'Obviously, it's not over until it's over, but every indication is that the Episcopal Church intends to continue on its revolutionary course, one that it out of the Christian mainstream,' said Peter Frank, spokesman for Bishop Robert Duncan of Pittsburgh, a leader of the conservative wing of the church. 'It's heartbreaking.'...Leaders of the worldwide group have warned of a break-up unless progressive Episcopalians back away from their acceptance of gay diocesan leaders and same-sex blessing ceremonies....'What I'm seeing here is teh Holy Spirit moving us in new directions,' said the Rev. Heather Buchanan Wiseman, of Cincinnati, a deputy for the Diocese of Southern Ohio. 'It's kind of exciting, it's scary, it's new,' she said....Wiseman said...many leaders think [the church] shouldn't have to sacrifice the dignity of homosexual members in the process...Bishops, however, were unwilling to let the convention adjourn without weighing in on the church's response to the crisis that erupted in 2003 with the consecration of Bishop V. Gene Robinson of New Hampshire, an openly gay man...Officials have apologized for the fallout but not for choosing Robinson...The presiding bishop-elect, Rt. Rev. Katherine Jefferts Schori of Neveda, is viewed as a liberal on sexuality issues. She voted in favor of Robinson and has backed same-sex unions in her diocese...she said...people of all races, creeds and orientations are "fully part" of God's creation...'This is not your grandmother's church anymore.' For Mike Wernick, president of the Episcopal gay advocacy group Integrity-central Ohio, yesterday's developments offer hope...'In my opionion, when Jesus came, Jesus came to expand God's circle. He came to make it so there would be no one left on the outside.'"

Man, these libs!! Come on! "No one left on the outside"? Who said they couldn't be in the Church? They just can't be bishops, or whatever. Women can't be priests. Hello! There are just some things you can't do within a church. If you don't like it, find somewhere else to go. Sheesh. But don't try to change everything and mangle the Bible in the process by giving me this touchy feely stuff. It's not going to fly.

The next article's headline says it all: "'Restraint' urged in allowing gay bishops." Well what the heck does that mean?? Are they allowed or not?? "We're again quite in a muddle," Bishop Duncan says in the article. A muddle indeed....

Thursday, June 22, 2006

Popcorn time: Cars

Haven't had a popcorn in awhile, so here you go ( a change from the Episcopalians!)

Saw Cars on Father's Day with my dad, brother and sister with a relatively good crowd of folks, mostly parents with small kiddies but a lot of adults and teens, too, given that this is Pixar. Contrary to some reviewers, I thought it was equal to Pixar's previous efforts and outshone Lassiter's last directorial works, the Toy Story films (I'm sorry, I've just never been that big a fan). The film revolves around Lightening McQueen (Owen Wilson), a hot shot race car who wants to win the "Piston Cup" and is heading to the final race in L.A. to decide the winner. On the way, Mac, his faithful carrier, accidentially loses him, and Lightening ends up in Radiator Springs, an all-but-deserted town along the fabled Route 66 (the shots of Rt. 66 are awesome, by the way, as is all the background work. Just amazing. No one does sunsets like Pixar). There he's forced into labor by the town sherrif after breaking the laws. He ends up meeting Doc (Paul Newman), Sally (Bonnie Hunt, as a really sexy Porsche) and the town's other colorful characters, like Italians Luigi and Guido, a hippie VW van, a real SUV, Sarge, and the tow trucks, whose name I'm forgetting. Of course Lightening has a lesson to learn from these guys and it's fun to watch him learn it. I liked it, but I think my dad liked it a lot more--he did his really loud laugh thing a couple times. :) Good music, good animation, great voices. Highly enjoyable, so go see it, and stay till the end because there's more animation.

Internal fall-out with Bishop Schori

From Tuesday's Dispatch :

"The first woman chosen to lead the Episcopal Church faced a conservative backlash yesterday when the diocese said it would seek leadership elsewhere...The Diocese of Forth Worth told the church's General Convention...that it was appealing to the leaders of sister Anglican churches abroad for immediate oversight and pastoral care...JEffertss Schore called Fort Worth's actions 'understandable.' When asked what she might do, she said, 'try to build relationships.' Forth Worth, San Joaquin, Calif., and Quincy, Ill., are the only dioceses in the denomination that don't ordain women. Resistance to female clergy is more prevalent in other parts of the 77-million member Anglican Communion (emphasis mine). ..Forth Worth now argues that an entire diocese can seek spiritual leadership from other Anglican Churches."

Well it's this a nice kettle of the words of columnist Damian Thompson, who had a column about this issue in the UK Telegraph :

The lowest common denomminator of any mainstream Christian Church is that its ministers accept the validity of each another's orders and therefore sacraments: that is the essence of "communion." Now that Anglicanism encompasses women and gay bishops (and, come to think of it, gay women bishops), roughly two thirds of its provinces do not recognise the minsitry and bishops ordained by the other third. This is not a Church: it is an ecclesiastical car crash."

Tuesday, June 20, 2006

More from the Episcopalians...

From various and sundry...

"Supporters in Greater Cincinnati and Northern Kentucky say Jefferts Schroi's election to the church's top post is a sign that the 221-year old denomination is "embracing equality." ...'I was pleased about the choice, though I know it's going to be trouble,' said Jane Beuteel, of Park Hills...Many of [the ECUSA's] provinces opposed the EC's decision 30 years ago to ordain women priests, and the consecration of an openly gay bishop in 2003...'I think they've lost touch with the mission of the church and with the grassroots,' [Cynthia Burst, spokeswoman for the American Anglican Council] said. 'Your average mom or pop in the pews does not embrace the view of the Bible, Jesus and sexuality as represented by the national convention.'" (hat tip: Cincy Enquirer)

And from the youth side of the convention....(also from Cincy)

"..For these teenagers, gay rights are worth fighting for, and a woman presiding over a major denomination should have happened years ago... 'there have been so many advances in the church with women and with homosexuality, but if they're not open now, we'll just be taking steps backwards,' said 15-year old Kathleen Darger of Crystal Lake, Ill. 'The way we were raised was not be racist or prejudiced against others. But when older people were growing up, it was a lot different for them.'...'Modern times come with modern adaptations,' said 15-year old Brooke Heinichen, of Cincinnati, who spoke during the mock committee meeting.

Whoa! Hold the horses!
Back up here. If this is the way Episcopal teens feel then they better never cross paths with a lot of Catholic teens while they're in town. The Columbus Diocese has a very strong youth contingent that believes strongly in traditional Catholic doctrine, and there are plenty of folks my age who feel the same way. It's not about being ' prejudiced' or 'racist.' I think it's safe to say that none of us are that. That's just not Christian. But at the same time, that doesn't mean, 'Well then do whatever you want! It's all OK!' because that's not what Jesus taught, either.

One of the things that gets me about the whole homosexuality argument is the 'well it's biological so it's OK.' I once defeated this argument to rather dramatic effect in a room full of men (my age, don't worry), by saying, "OK, so I'm a heterosexual female. You are heterosexual men. We were all born this way. So why aren't we all upstairs in some massive group orgy or something?" Needless to say, this shut them up for a bit. :) But levity aside, it's true! You don't see me, or the vast majority of people, just having random sex or engaging in all sorts of urges when we have them. Plenty of things are 'biological' that aren't OK, either morally or physically or socially. It's not about being prejudiced or not. It's about doing what the Bible says, what's actually Christian thought. It's not about being touchy-feely and trying to make everyone happy. That's not our goal. Or if it's the goal of the Episcopal Church, it's not going to exist for another 200 years, let alone the century. I guarantee it.

For the Love of All Things Holy-- 1

OK, I'm really, really glad I am not a Presbyterian:
From the Washington Times :

At some Presbyterian churches the Holy Trinity -- "Father, Son and Holy Spirit" -- will be out. "Mother, Child and Womb" is in.
Delegates to the national assembly of the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) voted yesterday to "receive" a policy paper on sex-inclusive language for the Trinity, a step short of approving it. Church officials are enabled to propose "experimental liturgies" with "alternative phrasings" for the Trinity, but congregations won't be required to use them.
Besides "Mother, Child and Womb" and "Rock, Redeemer, Friend," options include:
• "Lover, Beloved, Love"
• "Creator, Savior, Sanctifier"
• "King of Glory, Prince of Peace, Spirit of Love"
"This does not alter the church's theological position, but provides an educational resource to enhance the spiritual life of our membership," legislative committee chairman Nancy Olthoff, an Iowa laywoman, said during yesterday's debate on the changes.
The assembly narrowly defeated a conservative bid to send the paper back for further study, which would have killed it.
A panel that worked on the issue since 2000 said the classical language for the Trinity still should be used, but Presbyterians should seek "fresh ways to speak of the mystery of the triune God" to "expand the church's vocabulary of praise and wonder."
The language used for hundreds of years to describe the Father and Son "has been used to support the idea that God is male and that men are superior to women," the panel said.

Give. Me. A. Break.

Monday, June 19, 2006

Cousin heads to D.C.

Yesterday was Archbishop McCarrick's last day in D.C., so bring on my cousin...

From the WaPo:

In May, Pope Benedict XVI picked Bishop Donald W. Wuerl of Pittsburgh to replace McCarrick, overseeing an archdiocese of 560,000 Catholics and 115 parochial schools in the District and Maryland. Wuerl, scheduled to arrive in Washington today, will deliver his first Mass as archbishop Sunday at St. Matthew's Cathedral in Northwest Washington. McCarrick said he is confident that Wuerl will have no trouble picking up where he is leaving off.

"Whatever good I had, he's going to double it, and whatever stupidity I have had, he's not going to have," McCarrick said.

As priests and prelates donned their robes in the sacristy before the Mass, McCarrick leaned casually against an altar where his vestments had been carefully placed and chatted about his plans for the future. He will continue to serve the church, he said, traveling extensively on church business over the next several months to Rome, Moscow and possibly the Middle East. He'll split his time between Washington and New Jersey, where he lived for many years, and hopes to catch up on his reading, fishing and napping. But much of his time will be spent praying and preparing for what he says is his final journey.

"I'm going to get ready to go home," he said.

Compact and energetic, with lively hazel eyes, McCarrick looked ready for anything yesterday as he strode across the polished floor of the basilica toward the dais. He paused several times as some in the audience reached out to touch him and whisper their thanks. He nodded to some and gave a jaunty wave to others as he mounted the steps to the throne one last time.

The Mass marked the end of an era for a religious leader who has been beloved but also unafraid to take controversial stands. In the final days of his tenure, McCarrick was a vocal supporter of a Senate bill to allow thousands of illegal immigrants to become U.S. citizens. His longstanding work with the Latino immigrant community has drawn a mix of criticism and admiration, as was his decision to oppose conservative church leaders who said in 2004 they would bar Democratic presidential nominee John F. Kerry from taking communion because of Kerry's abortion rights advocacy.

It would have been hard to find critics of McCarrick yesterday among the hundreds gathered beneath the gilded dome of the basilica to hear his final words. There were no long goodbyes or lengthy speeches. McCarrick briefly thanked his fellow clergymen and women and D.C. Mayor Anthony A. Williams for coming. Then he thanked those who had come from far and wide to see him.

"Most of all, I thank God for you -- God's people here in Washington," McCarrick said.

True to form, McCarrick delivered a simple message for a town that often seems to thrive on complexity.

"In humility, we always find hope. Hope is impossible without humility," McCarrick said. "Because to have confidence in someone else, we must be humble."

As McCarrick delivered his final words, the audience began to clap. Moments later, McCarrick, with a lei of gold and white flowers around his neck, walked down the steps of the dais for the last time and turned to wave to the people he will miss the most.

Can't wait to see my cousin over'll be a good thing for the people of Washington, although we'll miss him in Pittsburgh!

The Episcopalians vote

Once again, why I am glad to be a Catholic...

So the Episcopalians have chosen their new leader, for a 9 year term (anyone want to explain to me why 9 years? Why not 10? or 8? Or something else random???) and it's the first woman, Katherine Scori. But apparently she's on the liberal end of the spectrum, the conservatives aren't happy, and the Anglican Communion, who doesn't even ordain women as bishops (nor do all the dioceses of the Episcopalian Church USA). So between the failure to act on the Windsor report and the fact that they've got a new female head of church who is in favor of same-sex "blessings" (what the heck is that??), things do not look like they are going the right direction for Episcopal reconcilation. In fact, new Presiding Bishop Schori is against the Windsor Report's recommendations. But I could be wrong. They've still got a few days left, I think. But the election of this new leader isn't going to sit well with Canterbury, or the conversative bishops around the country. The fall out should be interesting...

It's already interesting, as amatter of fact. The Archbishop of Canterbury, in a statement, says he sends his best wishes and prayers to Bishop Scori, who will bring unique gifts, etc., etc. to the position. He does mention that her election will bring (i'm paraphrasing) a new "wrinkle", to to speak, to the issues the two churches are having (for more, check out Amy Welborn's Open Book blog). So hmmm.

Sunday, June 18, 2006

New words

So I guess we are gonna have some new Mass dialogue, once Rome approves our new changes, and I for one think it'll be better. I mean, if you're going to have a Latin translation, have a real Latin translation, please! Don't just try to make it an approximation!

As a fun point of movie trivia: watch Gone With the Wind --just the beginning, when the family is at prayer. Mrs. O'Hara says the Confeiteor the 'old' way, which is to say the way we're soon going to be saying it. Interesting...

Thursday, June 15, 2006

Changes to the Mass?

The U.S. Catholic bishops will be taking up the idea of changing (well, OK, adjusting) the English translation we say at Mass to a more accurate reflection of the Latin. Several countries, including England and Australia, have already adopted these new translations. For example, instead of "The Lord be with you/ and also with you" it would be "The Lord be with you/And with your spirit", which is closer to the Latin "Et tum spiritu" (forgive the spelling). I actually think this is a good idea and would love to have Latin Mass, since I was born after Vatican II and missed it. I love all that old stuff. :) The only problem it'll cause is with the Mass settings, and since I'm in choir that means we'll have to learn some new stuff, since the new language probably won't fit with the old stuff everyone knows. But oh well. I'm sure with some tweaking we can still keep the "Celtic Mass" and the "Mass of Creation."

More on this when they have their conferene later this summer...for more, check out the WaPo ( religion section.

Wednesday, June 14, 2006

An "American Genocide"

is what Rep. Brinkman of the Cincinnati area called abortion in America yesterday during House hearings on his bill that would ban all abortions in Ohio. I thought I'd do a little press round-up of the coverage from today's Ohio papers, with, of course, commentary throughout, as warranted:

From the Plain Dealer :
"One abortion-rights ( gotta love that jargon! ) supporter countered [an earlier woman's testimony] with her own harrowing tale of life before Roe . Bill opponent Taba Aleem told lawmakers about her illegal abortion performed in 1968 by an Akron factory worker who demanded sex before using a coat hanger and a piece of rubber tubing. She asked lawmakers to vote the bill down, saying she was speaking "for the poor women and African-American women" with "limited financial means." ( OK, so we solve poverty by killing our babies? Ehhh?? Seems rather, um, barbaric to me. If you can't afford to get pregnant, then don't!)
Said Gary Dougherty, the executive director of Planned Parenthood Affiliates of Ohio in his testimony: "laws that criminalize abortion are bad for women's health, bad medicine and bad public policy." ( well, geez. I guess being vacuumed out of the womb is good prenatal health, though.

From the Dispatch :
This bit talks about a woman who runs a pro-life organization and how the tide has turned on abortion politics:

" 'I used to walk thesehalls and people would hide,' Folger said of the Statehouse. 'But they realized: Guess what, it turns out there are more of us then there are of them - not to mention the fact that our folkds have been having children whole the other side has been aborting them.'
The remark drew loud groans from many of the 160 people who packed the third-floor hearing room, where women outnumbered men about 2-1...House Bill 228, which opponents say is dangerous to women's health and imposes a particular religious view, would bad all abortions in Ohio... ( so it's a particular relgious view to say that we shouldn't kill kids? Yeah, I would kind of hope we could all be in agreement on that. Apparently not. )

Dayton Daily News :
"Gary Daughtery, executive director for Planned Parenthood Affiliates of Ohio, said: 'banning abortions will not stop abortion.' Instead, it'll lead to unsafe illegal abortions that put women's health at risk, he said. ( When things are banned, you generally see a decline in usage. I'm sure that a ban would drastically reduce the number of abortions in the U.S. How many women wouldn't have sex so casually if they knew that they couldn't have an abortion? How many young girls would practice abstinence instead? As for putting women's health at risk, don't tell me that an abortion is a safe proceedure for the mother. It's a major medical procedure, which carries inherent risks. So let's not act like this is akin to a teeth-cleaning, shall we?

From the Enquirer of Cincinnati:

(Remember Ms. Aleem from the P-D? She shows up a lot in these she is again...)

"Aleem, who was 20 at the time [of her abortion], said she was not ready to be a mother and felt this procedure was her only choice." ( Methinks she made the choice around the time she had sex...but that's just me )

"Dr. John Willke of Cincinnati who helped found the Right to Life movement in the early 1970s, said life begins at conception. To a lawmaker's question about supporting single mothers, Willke said poverty cannot be solved "by killing the children of the poor." (Amen!)

"Kathy Helmbock of Oakley, a member of NOW since 1972, testified that "abortion should be safe, legal and rare." ( OK, I don't get that. Good medical procedures are never called this. You don't hear anyone saying appendectonmies or tonsillectomies should be "safe, legal and rare." If it's truly safe and beneficial, then it should be legal. If it's not- and abortion isn't- then it should be illegal, therefore also making it rare, since illegality tends to make things rare. )

From the Blade , one of my favorite papers! (ha, ha)
A great quote: "The United States Supreme Court decision in Roe V. Wade began the American genocide of some 40 million lives." --Rep. Tom Brinkman.

An exchange from Pastor Russell Johnson, who compared abortion to the Holocaust, and Rep. Redfern (also chair of the exactly does that work?):

" 'Are you trying to equate members of this standing committee to those who allowed the Holocaust to occur?' asked state Rep. Chris Redfern (D., Catawba Island), chairman of the Ohio Democratic Party.
'I believe that God will hold us accountable for standing on behalf of the least of these little children,' said Mr. Johnson."

And more from Ms. Aleem of Akron..."'I didn't feel I had a choice.'" See above....

The Canton Repository has an exchange on rape:

" Most of testimony covered territory familiar to both opponents and proponents of abortion. John Willke, a Cincinnati doctor and former National Right to Life president, said he saw no reason to permit abortion in cases of rape.

'I don't see killing a baby for the crime of his father,' Willke said."

"Nationally, about 32,000 rape victims become pregnant each year and forcing the women to carry the [baby] deepens and prolongs their trauma, said Corrina Lohse of the Cleveland Rape Crisis Center.

'We believe choice was taken away from the survivor when she was raped,' Lohse said."

All right, I'll give her that. She sure didn't have much choice. But why compound a sin with another? One crime for another? It's certainly not the baby's fault. And with the evidence we have of the psychological trauma of abortion, why would any woman want to compound the mental agony?

Finally, the Akron Beacon Journal weighs in, with more from Ms. Aleem...

"Aleem and her allies fear her story will be repeated in the future for the state's girls and women if the legislation, sponsored by State Rep. Tom Brinkman becomes law.
Abortion opponents disagree. 'We don't want any exceptions,' Brinkman said. 'Women deserve better than abortions.'

Taba Aleem doesn't want a return to [days of abortions in back rooms with unsterile conditions]. She has four grown children and is a director at Planned Parenthood forr Summit, Medina and Portage counties. "

Well isn't that nice. One of the other articles I read said that she also went to college, something she "wouldn't have been able to do" as a single mother. Well, as Mother Teresa said, "It is a crime that a child must die so you may live as you wish."


Tuesday, June 13, 2006

Episcopalians in town

The Espiscopalians are having their 2006 convetion here in Columbus, so there's been a lot of buzz in the Dispatch , especially regarding potential schism and how they're going to deal with the homosexual issue. Apparently they're having alot of trouble with this, which, as you know, I also don't get. If you're Protestant, and the Bible alone is your only authority, as Luther said, then isn't it pretty clear? I dunno. But more on this as it develops....

The Coalition for what ?

it's another abortion day at the Statehouse...

In House is considering a bill that would ban all abortions (sort of like SD's ban). Now it probably won't go anywhere, but it's summer time, it's quiet, and this spices things up for us (at least a bit). So anyway, we had, of course, a bunch of people (I think 50 witnesses for each side) come to testify at the House today, and that included one of my "favorite" anti-life groups: the Religious Coalition for Reproductive Choice.

OK now here's what I don't get. If you're "religious", then how do you can you be for abortion? I just don't get it. There's that whole thing about "thou shalt not kill", "children are a blessing from the Lord," etc. , etc. etc. But it's OK to kill them? These little human beings that God knew in their mother's womb before they were born? (Psalms) How can you be for their slaughter?

I 've read a lot of different Christian churches positions on abortion, and it usually goes something like, "While we do not condone the practices of abortion we realize that it may be admissable in certain cases, yada yada yada." But then they're against the death penalty!

Don't get me wrong. I'm against the death penalty, too. But I'm also against abortion. How can you be for the killing of innocents but against the punshiment of people who, let's face it, 99.9% aren't good citizens to begin with. So hmmm. Explain that one to me. But, like most liberal causes, there is no logic. It's just ridiculous and irrational. Par for the course.

Sunday, June 04, 2006


Happy Pentecost, y'all!

Today I had a very different Mass experience than normal. I was at Children's for the Children's Miracle Network Telethon, which raises money for the hospital every year, and I was on it due to my transplant last year. It was really cool, btw, but afterwards we went to Mass at the Chapel with the fantastic Fr. Mark.

Now I love Fr. Mark. He is the best chaplain one could ask for at Children's, and he has been phenomenal for my family (for more, see my other blog!). He is just phenomenal. I've never, however, been to one of his Masses, since everytime I'm in I'm usually hooked up to all sorts of fun machinery, so I didn't travel well. But today I got to go.

He had a big bowl of red candy (since it's Pentecost) on the altar, which was cool- he used it for the homily, and talked about how each one represented something different. Twizzlers, how we're all intertwined; Big Red gum, how sometimes we need that long-lasting faith; Tootsie pops, for the sweet surprises of faith, and cinnamon, because sometimes we need that fun taste. :) It was a great homily. The chapel was totally packed, every seat filled, and some of the awesome 5T and 4AE nurses--like Rita!-- where there, and Michelle, the awesome nurse would could get me off the evil BIPAP after my transplant (go to Bucket of parts-- -- for more on all this!). It was awesome, with kids running around and a few patients but not too many. One of the pulmonologists was even there. It was a lot of fun, with applause and laughter and all sorts of good stuff. We even sang "happy birthday" to the birthday people before Mass, and offered our own intentions before, which was great. I got to do the first reading with all the big words, and my dad did the second. It was a lot of fun, especially with the little kids who reaallly wanted some of that candy! The atmosphere was just perfect for Pentecost, very celebratory and fun. It's nice to be there when you don't have to be there, you know?