Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Obama Crucified

Bill Donohue released the following remarks today:

Michael D’Antuono is a left-wing artist known for exploiting racial tensions (e.g, depicting George Zimmerman as a Klansman and Trayvon Martin as a generous child). But now he has succumbed to a new low.

D’Antuono’s painting of President Barack Obama with outstretched arms wearing a crown of thorns, against the backdrop of the Seal of the President of the United States, is called “Truth.” [Click here.] It is being hosted by the Bunker Hill Community College Arts Gallery in Boston, Massachusetts.

What makes this display so interesting is the flat denial of truth by so many artists and academicians, as well as their irrepressible hostility to Christianity. Yet when it comes to their savior, President Obama, they not only pivot, they proselytize.

“Truth” was supposed to make its debut on April 29, 2009 in New York’s Union Square; it was to commemorate the first 100 days of Obama’s presidency. But D’Antuono withdrew his masterpiece after being hit with angry e-mails. Now he is back, apparently thinking that after Obama won reelection, the time is ripe to witness his crucifixion. Imagine if his God had lost what our Christmas gift would look like.

It is one thing for the Italian nativity scene builder Ferrigno to include Obama as a figurine in this year’s crèche (it has regularly featured public persons such as Princess Diana), quite another for an angry artist to rip off Christian iconography for the purpose of making a cheap political statement.

I couldn't agree more, this is cheap political posturing using our most sacred images, and it is blasphemous.
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Urge your Senator to oppose ratification of CRPD

Rick and Karen Santorum are opposing the ratification of the United Nations convention  of the Rights of Persons with Disabilities. They, along with Senator Lee of Utah and the Home School Legal Defense Association have read the bill and fear that it may lead to the loss of parental rights over our children with disabilities. From the Patriot Voices website.

CRPD, if ratified, threatens U.S. sovereignty and parental rights and would effectively put the U.S. under international law when it comes to parenting special needs children. One provision in the treaty would give the government, acting under U.N. instructions, the ability to determine for all children with disabilities what is best for them. It would also give the U.N. discretion over decisions about how special needs kids are educated and could potentially eliminate parental rights for the education of children with disabilities. 

Senator Lee has been instrumental in fighting the ratification of several UN Treaties, including CRPD. He authored a letter to his colleagues asking them to commit to not consider any U.N. treaties in the lame duck session. Patriot Voices, along with HSLDA and others, helped to delay consideration of CRPD before the election and is rallying its members again to stop this treaty.

Here is an action page with sample letters to your Senators, your local paper, and a petition to sign. 

When the Nazis wanted to eliminate those with disabilities in Germany, they called upon parents to voluntarily institutionalize their children. Soon the officials in charge sentenced these children to death by starvation, exposure, and gas chambers. This is the infamous T4 Program. The people trusted their government. Does our government believe in the inherent worth of our children? Rick Santorum said no tonight on Piers Morgan's Show. He said that Bella's diagnosis of trisomy 18 is deemed 'incompatible with life'. Medical professionals advised the Santorums to let Bella die. She has defied the odds, living past her fourth birthday, and the Santorums will not allow anyone to take her life, but if this treaty passes, they may have to give their lives to defend hers.
We are the ones who care for our children with love and patience, we must never surrender them to the authorities who claim to know what is best. Think of institutions in our own country like Willowbrook where children like ours were starved and neglected in filth.
Never surrender your parental rights, especially when your child is particularly vulnerable.

Update Nov 27 from Tony Perkins of  Family Research Council

Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) said Monday that he plans to begin floor consideration of the United Nations Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities on Tuesday.

The United Nations' Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (CRPD) would pose serious problems for the United States if it were ratified today. Though it is touted as the progeny and logical follow-up to the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) of 1991, it is in fact more of a power grab than humanitarian action.

U.S. sovereignty is at issue on a number of fronts, including that the CRPD presumes the establishment of rights contained in treaties that the United States has not ratified, including the International Covenant on Social, Economic, and Cultural Rights (ICESCR). These rights are not recognized by the United States Constitution, nor are provided by existing U.S. laws - however U.S. courts could use the ratification of the CRPD to force Americans to comply with other UN treaties which are against American interests.

The original ADA equally protects the rights of all parents to direct the upbringing, education, and care of their children, regardless of the disability status of parent or child. The CRPD would take away this right, obligating our government to ensure that "in all actions concerning children with disabilities, the best interests of the child shall be a primary consideration." The phrase "best interests of the child" is an international law "term of art," its meaning firmly established through consistent application by other bodies, including the Committee on the Rights of the Child. As one international legal scholar explains, "Best interests provides decision and policy makers with the authority to substitute their own decisions for either the child's or the parents' provided it is based on consideration of the best interests of the child." In ratifying the CRPD, the government would apply this standard only to parents of disabled children - a position antithetical to the protection for parents provided by the ADA.

I urge you to contact your senators today, and let them know that parents of disabled children deserve the same rights as all parents.Bookmark and Share

Sunday, November 18, 2012

Our Lady of Breezy Point speaks

One of the first photographers on the scene, Frank Franklin II of The Associated Press, reached the corner of Oceanside and Gotham at 6 a.m. on Oct. 30.
Winding through the fields of blackened debris, he found himself transfixed by the statue of the Virgin Mary. Though raised by Protestant parents, Mr. Franklin attended a Catholic high school and he immediately perceived a deeper meaning.
“It’s weird how I was drawn to it,” Mr. Franklin, 40, recalled. “I’m not the most religious person in the world, but I know what those images are. When I made that frame, I knew it would resonate with people. What I couldn’t imagine was how much.”
I see it as a sign that Our Lady is praying for us. That, even this devastation can be a means of grace in our lives,and can initiate a rebirth of faith in our hearts if we heed the call to come home to the practice of our faith. It is no accident this sign came just as Catholics were facing a major election AND beginning the Year of Faith. Even a Protestant who is distant from his faith can feel it. Even the New York Times writer Samuel Freedman ( sounds like a good Jewish name) can feel it. Read the entire New York Times article here. 
Why are we not reading the signs of the times? 
I am as guilty as anyone. I should know better. 
When I was praying before Jesus in the Blessed Sacrament, He spoke to me, but I refused to listen until the devastating election results came in. I am no saint, but I do consider myself a practicing Catholic.

I hate to admit it, but I knew this, going into the election. I prayed before the Blessed Sacrament for an hour on election day, picturing voters touched by the grace of God which I was pleading for them, and voting pro-life. But I left thinking, "we are not ready for a revival of moral behavior and faith in this nation. We will not vote for a pro-life candidate" (assuming there was one, I am still skeptical). We need to suffer more before we are going to change.

Matthew Warner at the National Catholic Register wrote a great article in the lesson we should draw from the election here. 

If you're discouraged or think the world is upside down, I have something for you.
Whether marriage is redefined now or later, whether our religious freedom is trampled now or in 10 years, these are not at risk because politicians are getting bolder, they are at risk because our convictions are getting colder.

Guess what, regardless of who won the election, today we still have millions of babies being aborted every year. We still have 50% of marriages ending in divorce. We still have a supposedly Christian culture that has separated sex from marriage from procreation. We still have many Americans who are more likely to vote based upon peer pressure, or how nice somebody is, or their own self-interest, or by what the media told them, or by what's socially easy than they are to vote based on their own moral or religious convictions (or any economic sense). We still have lonely and suffering people in our communities who need to be loved.

Matthew is right. We Catholics have LOTS of work to do to undo the damage done by the sexual revolution. To build a Culture of Life and launch the New Springtime of Evangelization. And I am the only person who can begin this change. Waiting for politicians, priests, or even bishops to act first is a cop-out. Blaming secularists, pro-aborts, or Obama won't change anything.

I love this video because it features Pope John Paul and Lech Walesa who are not political leaders (Lech wasn't when he began Solidarity in a Gdansk shipyard) but they stepped out in faith, tiny Davids against the Goliath of Communism, and they suffered and fought till they won. We must follow their example for the Goliath of the Culture of Death is just as soul crushing as Communism or Hurricane Sandy was. If not more.

So must we suffer, pray, fast, fight until marriages last and babies are allowed to live. Till we have to build more churches to hold all those who want to attend daily Mass.
It will come, but Our Lord is looking at me to begin to change to set off a change reaction. What am I waiting for?

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Friday, November 09, 2012

Catholic Professor, and Protestant Pastor insist that Obama will reduce the abortion rate

Professor Schneck
The idea that all abortions are a result of economic hardship is held by many liberals including Professor Stephen Schneck at Catholic University who used it as an excuse to support Obama's re-election in an interview on "The World Over" on EWTN.
Ray Arroyo tried valiantly to make him see how Obama had increased abortions via subsidizing Planned Parenthood, ditching the Mexico City Policy and Obamacare, but he still insisted that Romneycare had reduced abortions by offering free care to pregnant women and that Obamacare would as well. Its a convenient facade to hide behind, but the professor had no hard facts to back it up and a poor knowledge of women's motivations for abortion. He certainly hadn't read this article. 
Michael New destroys Schneck and David Frum's arguments here;
Like other commentators, Frum touts Europe as a model to follow. He argues that the reason why abortion rates are lower in Germany is because they have more generous social programs. However, while the U.S abortion rate has fallen, Germany’s abortion rate has gradually increased since the early 1980s. Frum also cites the Netherlands as a country with low abortion rates. Again, despite the generous social programs, over 60 percent of pregnancies to women under 20 in the Netherlands still end in abortion. Overall, there is no body of peer reviewed research which shows that increased welfare spending reduces abortion rates. Furthermore, studies of abortion rates in the U.S. states found that the level of welfare benefits failed to have a statistically significant impact on the incidence of abortion.
Pastor Terry Graham
Changing the abortion rates has less to do with economics than culture. I was tweeting Pastor Terry Graham,  an African American minister of Team Soteria Ministries from Smyrna, Georgia who stated it plainly.

 "You have a better chance of ending FORNICATION, than ABORTION. If we deal with the root, we can stop the fruit."
Well stated, Pastor Graham, but I wonder how your support of President Obama for re-election, whose campaign ads about losing your virginity to Obama are nothing short of pornographic and whose partnership with Planned Parenthood casts doubt upon his being any kind of moral leader in sexual ethics.Here is an article which describes PP's outreach to teens, including an attempt to redeem the word slut.
Just in case you were wondering whether Planned Parenthood supports sexual promiscuity, they’ve elucidated their position: “slut” is a positive word. Their Facebook page for teenagers carries a video from MTV Voices with Francisco Ramirez, subtly titled “Sextra Credit 2.” In it, Ramirez, a gay activist, says, “A lot of people define slut as someone who has too much sex or too many partners – but according to who? The slut fairy?”
So, Pastor Graham, David Frum, and Professor Schneck, exactly whom do you think you are fooling? If you want to support Obama its your right as Americans, but your attempt to hide behind an attempt to reduce abortions to look good to the Christian community is a scandal. And now you have been exposed for the liberal phonies you are.

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Wednesday, November 07, 2012

Pope Benedict told us there would be times like this

thank you to my friend Mike Johnson who posted this on Facebook

“The church will become small and will have to start afresh more or less from the beginning. She will no longer be able to inhabit many of the edifices she built in prosperity. As the number of her adherents diminishes . . . she will lose many of her social privileges. . . As a small society, [the Church] will make much bigger demands on the initiative of her individual members…. It will be hard-going for the Church, for the process of crystallization and clarification will cost her much valuable energy. It will make her poor and cause her to become the Church of the meek . . . The process will be long and wearisome as was the road from the false progressivism on the eve of the French Revolution — when a bishop might be thought smart if he made fun of dogmas and even insinuated that the existence of God was by no means certain . . . But when the trial of this sifting is past, a great power will flow from a more spiritualized and simplified Church.

 Men in a totally planned world will find themselves unspeakably lonely. If they have completely lost sight of God, they will feel the whole horror of their poverty. Then they will discover the little flock of believers as something wholly new. They will discover it as a hope that is meant for them, an answer for which they have always been searching in secret. And so it seems certain to me that the Church is facing very hard times. The real crisis has scarcely begun. We will have to count on terrific upheavals. But I am equally certain about what will remain at the end: not the Church of the political cult, which is dead already, but the Church of faith. She may well no longer be the dominant social power to the extent that she was until recently; but she will enjoy a fresh blossoming and be seen as man’s home, where he will find life and hope beyond death.

-Fr. Joseph Ratzinger (Benedict XVI), from his book Faith and the Future

So, this election and the general decline in the Church attendance and the selling off of Church properties, the closing of schools, its all part of a plan to renew the Church spiritually and thus the entire world. Our suffering is redemptive if we offer it to God united with Christ's cross. 

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Post election reflections

My heart is as leaden as the grey skies which are blustering and threatening to once again pound our coastline, and I feel like I am attending the funeral of my homeland. So I make moves to comfort myself while the girls are at school. I am cuddling with my cats, eating chocolate and burning candles which leave a hint of Christmas in the air, and when I am done communicating online, I will pray. 
I will read the psalms of lamentation to remember how often in history, God allows us to have the leaders we beg for. Those of us who stormed Heaven, fasted and actively sought to influence others feel that our efforts were pointless against the secularization of America where half of our babies are born out of wedlock to half of the women who are unmarried and the absent men who will never raise them or support them. Where 25% of Americans do not profess a religious faith and the minority practice their faith on a weekly basis.They want their bread (highly unhealthy fattening junk food) and their circuses (wide screen TVs with immoral violent programming, and the omnipresent smart phones). They want a president who is no better than they are morally, who makes friends with the murderous terrorists and abortionists,  reassures the populace that they are victims and that the entitlement check is in the mail. A president who condones their most warped sexual proclivities and helps them avoid the consequences with contraception, abortion and treatment for the inevitable STDs.
Yes, the bishops should never have let America sink to this level. They failed, and next week in Baltimore, when they are facing destruction of all the institutions which their predecessors built in the US over past centuries, they will have to humbly admit that and make a plan to undo the damage with lack of catechesis and smiling at wrongdoing has done to the souls of American Catholics. They will regret allowing men like Biden to cloak himself in Catholicism while defying its central precepts.
But not all of them failed, and maybe, just maybe they will listen to those bishops who have been warning them to speak out. To Chaput, Paprocki, Jenky, Bruskewitz.
Let's pray for our leaders secular and religious, celebrate a holy time of thanksgiving that, despite our nation's cutting God out of political platforms, mocking in the media, killing the vulnerable unborn, elderly and infirm, and mocking the institution of marriage, He still protects us from invasion, pestilence and famine. It may not last, I think He is allowing us to self destruct as Rome did. 
We must ask His help to save us from our own wickedness and for those who understand that gravity of our situation and have worked passionately as I have to turn the tide of the culture of death, to rest a bit in the Lord, to learn from Him in prayer,  and to once again take up the weapons of the Church Militant. That is what we are here for. To fight the Culture of Death until God calls us home.
 Remember, we do win in the end.

From the USCCB website

Psalms, Chapter 37
1Of David.
Do not be provoked by evildoers;
do not envy those who do wrong.

2Like grass they wither quickly;
like green plants they wilt away.

3Trust in the LORD and do good
that you may dwell in the land and live secure.

4Find your delight in the LORD
who will give you your heart’s desire.

5Commit your way to the LORD;
trust in him and he will act

6And make your righteousness shine like the dawn,
your justice like noonday.

7Be still before the LORD;
wait for him.
Do not be provoked by the prosperous,
nor by malicious schemers.

8Refrain from anger; abandon wrath;
do not be provoked; it brings only harm.

9Those who do evil will be cut off,
but those who wait for the LORD will inherit the earth.

10Wait a little, and the wicked will be no more;
look for them and they will not be there.

11But the poor will inherit the earth,
will delight in great prosperity.

12The wicked plot against the righteous
and gnash their teeth at them;

13But my Lord laughs at them,
because he sees that their day is coming.

14The wicked unsheath their swords;
they string their bows

To fell the poor and oppressed,
to slaughter those whose way is upright.

15Their swords will pierce their own hearts;
their bows will be broken.

16Better the meagerness of the righteous one
than the plenty of the wicked.

17The arms of the wicked will be broken,
while the LORD will sustain the righteous.

18The LORD knows the days of the blameless;
their heritage lasts forever.

19They will not be ashamed when times are bad;
in days of famine they will be satisfied.

20The wicked perish,
enemies of the LORD;
They shall be consumed like fattened lambs;
like smoke they disappear.

21The wicked one borrows but does not repay;
the righteous one is generous and gives.

22For those blessed by the Lord will inherit the earth,
but those accursed will be cut off.

23The valiant one whose steps are guided by the LORD,
who will delight in his way,

24May stumble, but he will never fall,
for the LORD holds his hand.

25Neither in my youth, nor now in old age
have I seen the righteous one abandoned
or his offspring begging for bread.

26All day long he is gracious and lends,
and his offspring become a blessing.

27Turn from evil and do good,
that you may be settled forever.

28For the LORD loves justice
and does not abandon the faithful.
When the unjust are destroyed,
and the offspring of the wicked cut off,

29The righteous will inherit the earth
and dwell in it forever.

30The mouth of the righteous utters wisdom;
his tongue speaks what is right.

31God’s teaching is in his heart;
his steps do not falter.

32The wicked spies on the righteous
and seeks to kill him.

33But the LORD does not abandon him in his power,
nor let him be condemned when tried.

34Wait eagerly for the LORD,
and keep his way;
He will raise you up to inherit the earth;
you will see when the wicked are cut off.

35I have seen a ruthless scoundrel,
spreading out like a green cedar.

36When I passed by again, he was gone;
though I searched, he could not be found.

37Observe the person of integrity and mark the upright;
Because there is a future for a man of peace.

38Sinners will be destroyed together;
the future of the wicked will be cut off.

39The salvation of the righteous is from the LORD,
their refuge in a time of distress.

40The LORD helps and rescues them,
rescues and saves them from the wicked,
because they take refuge in him.Bookmark and Share

Thursday, November 01, 2012

Barbara Curtis, requiescat in pace

Barbara and Jonny Curtis

Yesterday, I was devastated to learn that my mentor and friend, Barbara Curtis has gone home to her Father's House. She left us suddenly, suffering a massive stroke.
Barb and I met at  American Life League's  pro-life blog award ceremony in 2009, I was honored as a newcomer to writing, to be seen as a pro-life blogger honoree with Barb, who has written 700 articles, and a dozen books. She, however, was as excited as I was about our awards, she squeezed my hand and said, "look, those are the trophies on the table!" Barb may have been more accomplished than I but we found ourselves bonded when she returned to the Catholic Church and began corresponding. We shared writing, our Catholic faith, and special motherhood. I looked up to her as a role model of a woman who balances writing and family life. I was inspired by her unforgettable conversion story. Her large family of 12 with four sons with Down syndrome was a role model to many and was highlighted in the Washington Post . Barb was an ardent pro-lifer and compiled a photo album from each year's March for Life to make up for the lack of media coverage. She was busy but humble and never failed to answer my emails. Although we only met once in person, I consider her a friend.
My girls and I watched with tears and cheers the video of her lovely daughter Maddie's audition for American Idol which featured a moving story about the Curtis family at home and her brothers' enthusiasm at her success. Barb was trying to raise funds for Maddie's studies at Catholic University, and I know we will be taking a collection for her soon. I will post the address where donations may be sent.

Barb was kind enough to allow me to use "A Little Extra" her story about Jonny, her oldest son with Down syndrome for my book A Special Mother is Born. We were collecting notes about people who were asking for the intercession of Servant of God Dr Jerome Lejeune for their healing. Here is the beautiful tribute she wrote to Dr Lejeune last April in Celebrate Life Magazine.
Barbara did much good on earth and she will be sorely missed by we who were touched by her amazing career, but most of all by the family she created in love with her husband Tripp, however, I like to imagine Barb, on this All Saint's Day, sharing a leisurely French meal (and a bottle of wine) with the good professor as they intercede for our special needs children here on earth.

UPDATE All Soul's Day. Here is a remarkable tribute from Barbara's husband Tripp which includes her funeral plans and an address to send contributions. It is a testament to their marriage and it proves that eloquence ran on both sides of the family.

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