Thursday, October 25, 2007

Nobel Peace Prize Nominee

Here is an article I came across about a Polish Catholic woman who dramatically rescued Jewish children during WWII. She was recently nominated for the Nobel Peace Prize and deserved it far more than Al Gore!

And her story only came to light because of 4 Kansas high school girls working on a class project. How cool is that?

"How Holocaust heroine rescued 2,500 children"

Visit their website: Life in a Jar

Tuesday, October 23, 2007

Rudy worse than Hillary

Why Dr. Dobson's right
Posted: October 23, 20071:00 a.m. Eastern
By Joseph Farah
© 2000>© 2007

Focus on the Family's James Dobson has been getting a lot of heat lately for taking a principled stand – that he will not support any candidate for president who is pro-abortion.
For the life of me, I can't figure out what is controversial about this position.
This is my position. And I think it's healthy that the Republican Party knows there are people like me and James Dobson – I strongly suspect millions like us – who will not vote for Rudy Giuliani over Hillary Clinton.

We can't do it. Our consciences do not permit us to do so. It's just that simple.
I believe not voting for either candidate is the right thing to do in that scenario. I believe announcing it, as Dr. Dobson did, is the right thing to do. And, I believe saying it early and often is the right thing to do.
There are some practical reasons for doing this besides being faithful to one's principles – and, I believe, God's principles.

We will never get better candidates if we accept lesser candidates. It's simple market politics. If Rudy Giuliani wins the Republican nomination, it will represent the first time in 30 years that an avowedly pro-abortion candidate did so. Don't expect that pendulum to swing back for another 30 years.

And, if Giuliani should, by some twist of fate, win the presidency, it will mean the end of Reaganism. It will represent a turning point in the history of the Republican Party and our nation. It will mean the continued deaths of tens of millions unborn babies when we are closer than ever to defeating the abortion culture that Roe v. Wade initiated in 1973.

Should Giuliani succeed, it will represent the end of any hope for the Republican Party to serve as an alternative to the Democratic Party for millions of people like me and Dr. Dobson. That's bigger than two terms of Hillary Rodham Clinton. That's worse even than four or eight more years in the wilderness.

I'll go even further than Dr. Dobson. Not only will I not support any candidate who is pro-abortion, I won't support any candidate who is not doing his or her absolute best to uphold, support and defend the Constitution of the United States.
That shouldn't just be my prerequisite. It should be the prerequisite of every American.
Yet, it is very difficult to find among the front-runners candidates who respect and revere and understand the Constitution.

I also won't vote for any candidate who says he's against abortion and same-sex marriage and higher taxes and Second Amendment restrictions but whose actions as an elected public official betray his words. That means you, Mitt Romney.

As voters, we should raise our standards. Otherwise, we will get candidates whose standards reflect the lowest common denominator – not the ideals of life, liberty and pursuit of happiness.
Dr. Dobson is right. More of us should take that principled stand. More of us should let the whole world know what that stand is. More of us should hold politicians accountable to higher standards.

If they want our votes, they should have to earn them.
What is so hard to understand about that?
I actually believe it would be worse for America if Rudy Giuliani were elected president than Hillary Rodham Clinton.
If Hillary wins, the reaction to her predictable overreaching will be similar to what we experienced in 1994 – a "Republican revolution."
If Rudy wins, millions will simply defect from the Republican Party. If you want to see the rise of a third party, just be sure to nominate Giuliani and elect him as president.
The long-term consequences of a Giuliani victory are far worse than the consequences of a Clinton victory.

So let's avoid that dire choice now. There's still time to avoid such an unpleasant scenario. Let's just nominate a Republican the Republican base can support.

Monday, October 22, 2007

Rosary Time!

We have started trying to say a decade of the rosary with the kids. It is so sweet to watch them each hold a rosary and pray with us, at least for the first 30 seconds that their attention is held!

Today I was holding the baby at the computer and letting him hold the rosary case and before I realized it, he had dropped it on the floor. Next thing I know I hear the older three praying a Hail Mary and I look down and they are sitting there, each with a rosary in hand, praying their "Rosey," as Dominic calls it.


I wish I had a picture, but I knew if I left to get the camera, the moment would be lost, so I just sat and enjoyed it. It is amazing what kids will pick up and how quickly, without you realizing it!

Saturday, October 20, 2007

Pumpkin Patch

Catherine, Anne, and Dominic found their pumpkins at the Pumpkin Patch (and Mommy's pumpkin is at Catherine's feet - the little green one!)

Wednesday, October 17, 2007

Monday, October 15, 2007

Are there no Catholic Billy Mitchells?

This is a great article I read on WND:

Are there no Catholic Billy Mitchells?
Posted: October 15, 2007 1:00 a.m. Eastern
By James Welsh

The recent blasphemous reception of holy communion by two homosexual "Sisters of Perpetual Indulgence" in San Francisco, actually administered by the archbishop of San Francisco himself, has set a new low in the sorry history of pastoral care and example that United States Catholics have received in the recent past from their apostolically appointed shepherds.

There is no need to list the numerous scandals that the Catholic laity have had to bear and finance in the last 20 years (some would say longer). For the "average" Catholic, the cry is repeated, "How long, O God, how long?" We suffer, but it seems no one on this earth listens to our laments.

The offending or, occasionally, incompetent bishop or cardinal will continue to promote this or that questionable liturgy or liberal policy or abuse blithely dismissing orthodox or traditional or conservative (take your pick) complaints as the rantings of malcontents or, even worse, bigots or haters. And what can we do? We occupy pews, they sit in chairs.

Oh, yes, the Internet is full of websites and blogs that list the latest outrages. They do yeoman's work for us. And we need them to stay informed. But we need more. We need the voices of the more powerful of our faith to lead us. Our pikes and plowshares are not enough. We need knights and ladies to rally us to follow them and to publicly confront the clergy who are squandering the inheritance our Catholic forbearers bequeathed to us.

Many of our Dioceses are now in hoc to pay for sexual scandals. The beautiful churches and schools that our parents, grandparents and great-grandparents built with money they really could not afford to give (somehow they would always survive the inevitable next "pledge") are closed and empty. And there is no end in sight and, as the saying goes, "And the band played on."

Now, what does this have to do with Billy Mitchell?

For those unfamiliar with Billy Mitchell, or who are too young to have seen the film "The Courts-Martial of Billy Mitchell" starring James Stewart, he was a decorated Army Air Force pilot who, after World War I, tried in vain to convince the civilian and military leaders of our country that air warfare would be the deciding factor in future wars. His efforts to have more military investment in fighter and bomber research were repeatedly rebuffed by his superiors. In frustration, in 1921 and 1923, against orders, he equipped aircraft with large bombs and, in full view of a large group of high civilian and military officials, sank several large German warships that had been seized after WWI. His efforts to work within the Army were rebuffed and ignored.

In 1925 Mitchell went public with charges of incompetence and "almost treasonable administration of the national defense." Rather than reexamine their prejudices against Gen. Mitchell's prophesies of future warfare, Mitchell's superiors in the Army brought charges against him and court-martialed him. He was found guilty of insubordination and left the Army Air Corps in disgrace.

Through the '20s and '30s, the Army Air Force (and Naval air units) became a backwater of our military establishment. On Dec.7, 1941, a large force of modern Japanese naval aircraft attacked the United States naval base at Pearl Harbor( as Mitchell had prophetically predicted). Much of our Pacific fleet was destroyed. The rest is history. Billy Mitchell had been vindicated, but at great price for himself and for his country. It is true that Mitchell had many faults, but no great man is perfect. We must ultimately judge them on their singular greatness.

And what does Billy Mitchell have to do with the average Catholic? Nothing because this writing is not directed to average Catholics. Few of us ever achieve high rank in life. We live, by God's intention and design, ordinary lives. But for some, He has given special talents in politics, arts, communications and finance. It is to that distinct group of our Catholic brethren that I address this question:
Are there any of you willing to publicly begin to stand up to the continuing lack of pastoral care by our clergy, both hierarchal and ordinary, and begin to publicly call for those offenders to be recalled and replaced by Rome?

The second part of the question is the issue at hand. Certainly many (most?) have at times been publicly critical of actions and policies of Episcopal authorities. But calling for removal and replacement? A strong question, I acknowledge. Perhaps even shocking. Maybe even outrageous. Who are we to call for a bishop's replacement? Well it is our church also. It does not just belong to the hierarchy. There was a time when temporal authorities had influence on canonical appointments. I will acknowledge there were abuses, but in light of actions such as recently occurred in San Francisco and the woeful state of the church in the United States in general, would more input from the lay faithful be worse?

Now, who are these Catholics that I address these words to?

You are the Catholics who are elected to political office and are faithful to the magisterium, but are silent when an outrage is perpetrated by a bishop such as described above. You are the Catholics in the media who often defend the church from attacks from without but are publicly silent when the outrage is from within. You are the Catholics who occupy esteemed positions in think tanks and educational institutions who often bring to light abuse, but never call for penalties for those who allow them. You are the Catholics who are CEOs and board members of corporations that often raise monies for diocesan organizations that are diverted to questionable or even sometimes immoral activities. You are the Catholics in powerful Catholic fraternal organizations who regularly meet and socialize with pastoral shepherds who permit scandal within their dioceses and say nothing.

I will not name any Catholics who are among the above groups. You know who you are. And average Catholics know who you are. We look up to you to carry our banners in the public square. It is now the time for you to do more, to answer the second part of the question. You are the potential Catholic Billy Mitchells.

Our church is a hierarchal organization, and we are taught and conditioned to respect our superiors. We understand the difficult situations and scorn and contempt that public appeals to Rome will put upon you. But as Christ says, "To whom much is given, much will be expected." We are properly taught reverence and obedience to our superiors just as was Gen. Billy Mitchell. But Mitchell knew that his superior's blindness to the future required his sacrificing all that he had achieved for a greater good – that of his country.

So we arrive at the question: Are there any among you, individually or in group, who will now say "Enough is enough" and begin to publicly appeal to Rome for relief from hierarchy and clergy who subject us to the outrages such as occurred in San Francisco on Oct. 7, 2007? Yes, you may lose access to the chancelleries. You may lose prestige among your peers. You may face cancellation of your columns from diocesan publications. You may be dismissed from your board chairs in Catholic charities and organizations. All these may happen. But who else, at this point, can carry our pain to those in the seats of power in our church.

Will you accept your commissions in this great battle for the soul of our church?

Friday, October 12, 2007


We were watching EWTN's The World Over with Raymond Arroyo, and he had on an actor named Eduardo Verastegui to talk about his life story and his movie called "Bella".

Please visit the website, go see the movie, and purchase the DVD. We need more decent, pro-life films like this!

Thursday, October 11, 2007

Overwhelmed by homeschooling information

Our oldest child will soon be 4 and I have been researching homeschooling off and on for the last few years. Until recently I kept telling my husband that I was only considering it (he would really like us to do it). Now I am acknowledging that I want to homeschool and will do it. At the least I want to try it. And it seems that it may be God's will for our family. I don't know if I have the patience, but I suppose that is something I will get better at over time. I have always loved to learn things and study, and what better thing to share with my children.

However, I am feeling quite overwhelmed with all of the information out there about homeschooling. I guess it is a good problem to have so many great Catholic homeschooling resources to choose from. Now we have to decide whether to use a home-study school fully or partially, or to select our own curriculum. I guess that is my project for the next year or so. Anyone have any tips on how to choose? I know each mom (or dad) will have their own teaching style and you have to find what works for your family, but it seems hard to decide where to begin.

Tuesday, October 9, 2007

Time for Confession

Last month I posted a comment about "Protestants embracing confession." This is a related article from Zenit:

For the full article:

Confession Comeback
Efforts to Stimulate Interest in Reconciliation
By Father John Flynn, L.C.
ROME, OCT. 8, 2007 (

Confession is undergoing a revival of sorts after a long period of neglect. There has been a spate of recent press articles on the sacrament of confession, or reconciliation, as it is often termed. On Sept. 21 the Wall Street Journal reported that more than 5,000 people turned up at a Reconciliation Weekend held in March in the Diocese of Orlando, Florida. A column dated March this year by Bishop Thomas Wenski, posted on the Orlando Diocese's Web page, spoke about the need for confession. The loss of the sense of sin was termed "the spiritual crisis of our age," he said.

Meanwhile, the Wall Street Journal article explained that interest in confession is rising among some Protestant denominations. This summer, a North American branch of the Lutherans passed a resolution at a meeting supporting the rite of confession, after more than a century of neglect.

Some of the Protestant versions of confession being popularized are, however, notably different from the Catholic sacrament. The Wall Street Journal mentioned practices such as individuals coming clean in videos that are even posted on sites such as YouTube, for all to see. Other initiatives include a confession Web site, set up by an evangelical congregation in Cooper City, Florida, which according to the Wall Street Journal has postings from 7,700 people who list their faults.

The rising interest in confession marks a turnaround, the article observed. A 2005 survey reported that only 26% of Catholics in the United States went to confession at least once a year, down from 74% in the early '80s. (My emphasis...Note that 74% of Catholics don't go to confession at least once a year! )

The Catholic Church is also trying to promote interest in confession. "It remains one of the great marvels of God's love that God would make forgiveness so readily available to each of us," Archbishop Wuerl commented. "The sacrament of reconciliation is the story of God's love that never turns away from us," he said. "Like the father in the parable of the prodigal son, God waits, watches and hopes for our return every time we walk away."

Benedict XVI reflected on the importance of confession, in words directed to the youth of Rome, gathered March 29 in St Peter's Basilica to prepare for the local diocesan celebration of World Youth Day on April 1. God's love for us, expressed by the death of Christ on the cross, has obtained for us the gift of the Holy Spirit through which our sins are forgiven and peace granted, the Pope commented. "Christ draws us to him to unite himself with each one of us so that, in our turn, we may learn to love our brothers and sisters with this same love, as he has loved us," the Pontiff added. Once we are filled with this love, Benedict XVI recommended to the young people, we are called upon to make an impact in the world by means of an authentic Christian witness. Valuable words of encouragement to encourage participation in a sacrament neglected for too long.

Monday, October 8, 2007

Justice Thomas

I was able to listen to some of Justice Clarence Thomas' interviews on Rush, Hannity, and CSPAN last week (he has been promoting his book "My Grandather's Son"), and am once again reminded of how fortunate we are to have him as a Supreme Court Justice.
If only we could get a few more like him (or Scalia or Roberts or Alito for that matter)!

I am looking forward to reading his book - if I can ever find the time...


Friday, October 5, 2007

The War

Instead of blogging in the evenings this week, Janet and I have been watching (after the kids have all gone to bed) the PBS documentary by Ken Burns called "The War".

There has been some interesting comments in the blogosphere and on the Internet and printed media about this documentary. I don't want to get into that now - maybe on another posting.

I recommend that everyone watch this film. It's a great chance to get a reality check and realize that our problems we encounter in our everyday lives are quite trivial compared to what the WWII generation had to endure.

The documentary has a lot of actual footage from WWII that will make your heart break. There are some interesting things that I didn't know happened during the War. So it is a good history lesson as well (assuming these things in the film actuallly happened - I have to assume they did).

It is easy to forget about the wars we have fought in our young history as a nation. This film is a good reminder of why we are and should remain "One Nation Under God."

God Bless our WWII veterans, and all veterans of this country!