Archives for January 2012

7 Quick Takes Friday (set #51)

7 Quick Takes Friday the 13th

This week: Another Planned Parenthood manager switches sides and witnesses for life. It is time again for the March for Life. The Holy Father celebrating the Mass – Ad Orientem. Victory for the good guys in one battle against freedom of religion. Republicans and Democrats join hands to censor and kill the Internet. Reasonable and sane…   or extreme ideologue? Three years down, one to go – Bill Whittle gives us a summary so far.

— 1 —

This is a wonderful success story of 40 Days for Life. A Planned Parenthood manager converts and the “clinic” closes. Precious lives are saved.

— 2 —

It is almost time for the 2012 March for Life (January 23rd). What can we expect? Massive turn-out around the country. In Washington DC we will probably see even more than the record 400,000 of last year. The marchers, as every year, will be young and enthusiastic. They will be polite and not make a mess.

There will also be a dozen counter-protesters at the Supreme Court. They will be old, angry and use fowl language if the past is any guide. Also if the past is any guide, mainstream media will give little coverage. What little coverage they do give will be buried, avoid acknowledging the size of the crowd, and feature tightly cropped images of the dozen pro-aborts on the court steps.

The battle for life is being won despite the media’s efforts. Make voting pro-life your number one priority. Vote pro-life for president, congress, state government, local government and even the dog catcher. I am not kidding – those in higher offices began in lower ones. Make it impossible to be a successful politician in America for those who accept the murder of innocent life in the womb.

— 3 —

Yes, the Mass CAN (and should, IMHO) be celebrated Ad Orientem. Most certainly not with the priest’s back to you, but rather with all the gathered faithful facing together toward our Lord (including the priest). Our Holy Father often celebrates Mass this way. Here he is at the Feast of the Baptism of the Lord:

(This video is no longer available.)

Spotted by Shawn Tribe at NLM.

— 4 —

An important victory! In a Supreme Court case looking at the right of churches to hire and fire staff free of discrimination claims. Had the decision gone the other way, the door would have opened to telling us who we must hire (or keep) as priests. Elizabeth Scalia has some excellent coverage of the decision. The Catholic News Service has the details of this specific case. Fr. Z has comments too.

The left’s war against religion (Catholicism in particular) is at least not completely unchecked. This recent decision will not make Obama happy as a more measured legal strategy will be necessary. Who can forget this classy display of respect for co-equal branches of government:

— 5 —

Republicans and Democrats are joining together to censor the Internet. They want contributions from entertainment companies. Entertainment companies want to shut down any site they wish. The result will NOT stop internet piracy but it WILL hurt you in a wide variety of ways. The acts are named PIPA and SOPA and your elected representatives will probably vote for them unless they know you are watching.

— 6 —

Reasonable and sane…   or extreme ideologue? Patrick Archbold at Creative Minority Report reminds us in this video he made in 2008:

— 7 —

Bill Whittle takes a look at our president’s first three years. Is this what we wanted?

Some random thoughts or bits of information are worthy of sharing but don’t warrant their own full post. This idea was started by Jennifer Fulwiler at Conversion Diary to address this blogging need. So, some Fridays I too participate when I have accumulated 7 worthy items. Thank you Jen for hosting this project!

Elsewhere: speaking the truth and feeding the flock


We are blessed to have some truly outstanding bishops. Excellent shepherds who are not afraid to speak-out on issues of faith, knowing they will be vigorously attacked by secular interests (and “progressive” Catholics too). I gave some examples back in November 2010.

Likewise, we also have some exceptional priests. One such man is Father Michael Rodriguez of the Diocese of El Paso. John Quinn recently made a list of Fr. Rodriguez’ quotes about homosexual acts on his excellent Courageous Priest blog:

  1. I urge all of the Catholic faithful to treat homosexuals with love, understanding, and respect. At the same time, never forget that genuine love demands that we seek, above all, the salvation of souls. Homosexual acts lead to the damnation of souls. Any Catholic Who Supports Homosexual Acts
  2. Furthermore, a Catholic would be guilty of a most grievous sin of omission if he/she neglected to actively oppose the homosexual agenda, which thrives on deception and conceals its wicked horns under the guises of “equal rights,” “tolerance,” “who am I to judge”,” etc. Any Catholic Who Supports Homosexual Acts
  3. Remember: Every single Catholic, out of fidelity to charity and truth, has the absolute duty to oppose (1) the murder of unborn babies, and (2) any and all government attempts to legalize homosexual unions. Any Catholic Who Supports Homosexual Acts
  4. I was ordained to the Catholic priesthood to offer sacrifice and teach the only truth which brings salvation and happiness…   The priesthood is my greatest joy. In the present circumstances, I intend to try even harder to be a good, holy priest. Obedience to my bishop is essential to the priesthood. Bishop Publicly Disciplines Fr. Rodriguez
  5. Today, throughout 21st century America, elementary school children are being indoctrinated by homosexual activists that there are “different kinds of families.” Jesus Christ preached against the man who looks upon a woman and lusts after her. (Mt 5:28). Today, 21st century man, a slave to the fires of his passion and lust, cries “equal rights” in order to justify the abomination of male-male or female-female “unions.” The stench of moral decadence surrounds us, and yet we insist on spreading the lie that we of the 21st century are “enlightened and progressive” because we’ve “moved beyond the prejudices of the past. The Truth About Homosexuality, Part IV
  6. A truly pastoral approach will appreciate the need for homosexual persons to avoid the near occasions of sin. We wish to make it clear that departure from the Church’s teaching, or silence about it, in an effort to provide pastoral care is neither caring nor pastoral. The Truth About Homosexuality, Part IV
  7. Above all, we are to show love and compassion towards homosexuals by leading them to the truth, and helping them to reject sinful homosexual activity. Remember, it’s about saving souls! We must be firm, yet humble, patient, and caring. Love and compassion means assisting the homosexual person to live chastely, form wholesome friendships, and grow in the virtues: peace, patience, benignity, goodness, longanimity, mildness, faith, and modesty. (Gal 5:22) Happiness and self-fulfillment can never be gained through sinful relationships and disordered sexual activity. The Truth About Homosexuality
  8. Under no circumstances can sinful homosexual acts ever be approved. Woe to the Christian who denies the reality of sin! It is never loving and respectful to lie to homosexuals by telling them that homosexual behavior is o.k. or “normal.” Don’t be fooled by the well-orchestrated campaigns of misinformation and deceit by pro-homosexual groups which have infested the media. Instead, trust in God and His commandments! Trust in the teachings of His Church! Homosexual acts were, are, and always will be an abomination before God and man. This is an infallible moral teaching of the Catholic Church to which every Catholic must give assent. The Truth About Homosexuality, Part II

The embedded links go to the full Courageous Priest posts. View them for the complete context. The quotes were posted in Father Rodriguez’s 2011 Top Eight Quotes

Note that Fr. Rodriguez’ efforts were strongly supported by the faithful in his parish, but political and other forces were arrayed against him. Unfortunately, he did not enjoy the support of his liberal bishop. His Excellency Armando X. Ochoa reassigned Father to a small parish in a far corner of the diocese.

Fr. Rodriguez has introduce the EF (Latin) Mass in his new, smaller parish and continues to teach the authentic Catholic faith. Bishop Ochoa is no longer in the El Paso diocese.

7 Quick Takes Friday (set #50)

7 Quick Takes Friday

This week: Catvertising, a new paradigm for the advertising world. A girl who wanted only her daddy. Top 50 Saints’ Quotes. Top 10 reasons for hope in the new year. Promises not kept…   the young wise-up. The entertaining antics of the Occupy Wall Street crowd, hypocrisy division. Stephen Colbert is an odd duck.

— 1 —

This is funny. The future of advertising rests in a paradigm shift to cat videos:

Spotted by Fr. Finigan

— 2 —

Everybody in her class got presents, but her. All she wanted was her daddy home for Christmas:

(This video is no longer available.)

Spotted by Marcel

— 3 —

Speaking of Marcel LeJeune from Aggie Catholics, last fall he posted a Top 50 Saints’ Quotes list. His lists are always good and interesting. If you missed it, check it out!

— 4 —

It is easy, in a disappointing year like 2011, to overlook the positive fruits also reaped. Some times they are in response to challenges. In other cases, just wonderful developments all on their own. The fine folks at Catholic Vote have put together their year-end top 10 list of reasons for hope:

— 5 —

I like Obama, other than his laser-like focus on (1) bankrupting the country, (2) destroying the family, and (3) killing as many as possible in the womb. He is also a man of many bold promises:

The younger generation, who will bear the trillions in additional debt of Obama’s failed programs, is wising up:

— 6 —

Occupy Wall Street is one of 2011’s best sources of entertainment. What do Russell Simmons, Jay-Z, Kanye West, Yoko Ono, Jane Fonda, Alec Baldwin, and Michael Moore have in common? They all claim to be part of the oppressed 99%, proudly speaking-out against the rich class. The problem is, they are all multi-millionaires (tens and hundreds of millions). In fact, according to a list assembled by Paul Wilson of the Culture and Media Institute, the 25 wealthiest OWS celebrities are worth a combined $4 BILLION dollars. Hypocrisy is one of OWS most entertaining hallmarks. L. Brent Bozell III wrote about this yesterday for Chris Magazine in his Occupy’s Celebrity 1 Percent Backers piece.

— 7 —

Stephen Colbert is an odd duck. He is very popular with young, progressive, often anti-religion adults. He is also by all reports a faithful Catholic. One safe path for him would be to never mention Catholicism. Presenting Catholicism as you or I might would be received very poorly by a hostile crowd. Yet, he manages to cleverly teach elements of our faith and is well received. I don’t think his audience has caught on or they think he is only being irreligious. He is a recent example:

Some random thoughts or bits of information are worthy of sharing but don’t warrant their own full post. This idea was started by Jennifer Fulwiler at Conversion Diary to address this blogging need. So, some Fridays I too participate when I have accumulated 7 worthy items. Thank you Jen for hosting this project!

Elsewhere: Tebow holy water


I have always had a profound disinterest in spectator sports. Yet, I now know about the Denver Broncos, “controversial” Super Bowl ad star and Heisman Trophy winner Tim Tebow. I know about him because of his “scandalous” behavior, at least in the view of the militantly secular world.

In a year when the big professional sport news is athletes boldly “coming out of the closet” to announce their homosexuality, we have Tim. Where the former is fawned over by the media, the later is ridiculed. In a world where athletes routinely demonstrate the poorest morals, we have a shining example of one who does not. The liberal media hates him.

It started with a Super Bowl pro-life ad. Tim’s mom suffered a life threatening condition during pregnancy which required a powerful drug to wake her from a coma. Doctors expected Tim to be stillborn and pushed for an abortion. Obviously, she refused. Fast forward to the Super Bowl ad. Pro-abortion groups and their liberal media allies were having a meltdown in anticipation. All manner of threats were made and editorials decried this vulgar, anti-choice spot. When it aired, abortion was not even mentioned but embracing life was displayed – embodied in Tebow’s simple existence.

The “problem” with Tebow is that he openly lives his life as a Christian. When asked in interviews, he admits he will remain a virgin until he marries. He acknowledges God as the source of his success. On the field, he recognizes that by briefly going down on one knee and pointing skyward. Many call this “Tebowing,” but the effect is more like sprinkling holy water on evil. That seems to be the seething reaction of many.

Colleen Carroll Campbell wrote recently about Tebow:

That this former Heisman Trophy winner and famously devout evangelical Christian quarterback has become a Rorschach test for our attitudes on religion in public life was never more apparent than in the wake of Sunday’s game, when Tebow’s feverish detractors rushed to the airwaves and blogosphere to exult in his defeat. Tebow’s unexpected success, and his habit of publicly thanking Jesus Christ for it at every opportunity, drove his critics crazy. His loss on Sunday restored their sense of cosmic justice – not that they believe in such nonsense.


It is odd that the clean-cut, perpetually grinning preacher’s son who spends his summers caring for orphans and publicly touts his plan to eschew premarital sex inspires such widespread fear and loathing, given how forgiving Tebow’s critics often are of the thuggery common in the NFL. Pundits horrified by Tebow’s pious persona have shown far less alarm at the antics of such gridiron stars as Brett Favre, caught harassing a female television commentator with unsolicited pictures of his private parts; Adam Jones, connected to multiple violent episodes in strip clubs; and Ben Roethlisberger, implicated, though not charged, in two sexual assaults. Doping, drunk driving, beating women, abusing dogs – you name it and there is an NFL star who has been caught doing it, only to issue a cursory apology, serve his time (or not) and scamper back to the huddle, usually to raucous public applause. But Tebow opens press conferences with praise for God and ends touchdown drives with genuflections of thanksgiving? Now that crosses the line.

In the end, both Tebowmania and Tebowphobia say far more about us than about this rookie quarterback. Tebowphobia tells us that for all our pretense to tolerance in 21st century America, many Americans harbor little tolerance for public figures who take their religious commitments too seriously, elaborate on them too specifically or live them too publicly – especially when those commitments are connected to traditional moral values.

As for Tebowmania, it reminds us that Americans are still hungry for heroes, still inspired by leaders whose optimism and grit allow them to overcome great odds and still captivated by that rare professional athlete who plays for love of the game while remembering that it’s not all about him and it is, at the end of the day, just a game. Tebow’s football star soon may fade, but the truth he has revealed to us – both about ourselves and about the power of an authentically lived faith to capture the imagination – will endure.

Read the whole article at Catholic Lane (reprinted from the St. Louis Post-Dispatch): Rorschach Test for our Attitudes on Religion.