December 11, 2007


Once again, Planned Parenthood suggests that contraception not abstinence is the answer. I have seen lots of contracepting ladies get pregnant. I have never seen a pregnancy in a woman who is not having sexual relations (i.e. is abstinent). -- (except for Our Lady)...Alicia of "Fructus Ventris"

A rowdy bunch on the whole, they were most of them so violently individualistic as to be practically interchangeable. - line from book "Dud Avocado" via Amy Welborn

I know that indulgences remit the temporal punishment for sins whose eternal penalty has been remitted. I want to get a better handle on what temporal punishment is: is it the resistance that I experience when confronted with Christ's beauty? In Spes Salvi, Pope Benedict XVI writes about the flames of purgatory: "Some recent theologians are of the opinion that the fire which both burns and saves is Christ himself, the Judge and Saviour. The encounter with him is the decisive act of judgement. Before his gaze all falsehood melts away... In this way the inter-relation between justice and grace also becomes clear: the way we live our lives is not immaterial, but our defilement does not stain us for ever if we have at least continued to reach out towards Christ, towards truth and towards love."...If this is so, then an indulgence is an ecclesial act of begging Christ to look upon us and burn away all resistance to Him. And as this resistance is burned away, we draw not only nearer to Christ but also nearer to those to whom we are sent as emissaries of His mercy and hope. As I'm fond of saying: Christ is the one mediator between God and man - and, the one mediator between man and man. - Frederick of Deep Furrows

Of course, as was the case with the Da Vinci Code, sneering is widespread and appropriately accompanied by disdainful sniffing. Hysterical Catholic Apologists bumbling into the Culture Wars. How typically retrograde and frankly, embarrassing. It’s Art. So what you’re saying…is that this Philip Pullman is the Magisterium? The Authority we Must Not Question? Oh, I get it. Well, actually, I don’t. The irony of trying to shut down debate about a work that sees shutting down debate as a crime against humanity is almost too much. News flash: Being critical and discerning about entertainment choices is not a sin. Last I heard, it was a positive quality. If a person says, “Hmm. I read those books. They may have their good points, but they’re not high, irreplacable literature and they are built around a false, misleading, bigoted portrait of religion and God. Nah, don’t think I’ll take the kids to see the movie. Oh, and when people ask me questions about the content, I’ll answer them.”…..Or, maybe, “Hmm. This Passion of Christ movie..I don’t like the way Jews are portrayed. I don’t like the violence. Doesn’t strike me as true to the Gospels or what I understand the Passion was all about. Don’t think I’ll see it. Won’t take my kids.” Yeah. Like that. It is okay. Embrace the discernment. Philip Pullman and New Line Cinema are not The Authority. You don’t have to see their movie. You can even…criticize it. The other response I’m seeing - especially from critics who claim a spiritual bent - is that GC is so, so valuable because it will give parents and young people a great opportunity to discuss the important issues raised by Pullman about religious authority, human freedom, and so on. Of course, anything can be used as a starting point for discussions on spirituality... After we finish with The Golden Compass, shall we break out The Protocols of the Elders of Zion to open up discussion on Judaism?...The starting point for a good - really good, fruitful discussion - is not the bigoted, agenda-driven misrepresentation of others. - Amy Welborn; the perfect response to the latest controversy

My basic position on the whole matter: Bring back Gregorian Chant and the baroque, or give me AC/DC and Elvis. This conflicted tripe is junk. - Eric Scheske of "The Daily Eudemon" on modern church songs

I've been pulled over several times for small things but have always had the good fortune of having very nice police officers. It always makes me nervous though. My brothers, on the other hand, have some whoppers to tell. Like one time my brother was given a DUI after he just got out of the river white water rafting, went to his truck wet, discovered he didn't have his keys, got in, let out the parking brake, rolled the truck down the hill backwards about a block to where the other guys were coming up from the bank. (He is an auto body man so he really can do this smoothly.) A policeman sees him, and gives him a DUI. He tried to explain that he wasn't drinking - he was cold and wet - and he wasn't driving - he didn't even have his keys! - reader email regarding my recent brush with a cop

Why would [Antonio] Rosmini pull ahead of [John Henry] Newman? The Rosminians. Have you ever heard of Newmanians? - commenter Frederick on "Pertinacious Papist" in the canonization sweepstakes

If I wanted people to stay away from my movie in droves, I'd be sure to tell them it was entirely in harmony with Catholic teaching. --Tom Kreitzberg commenting on Curt Jester's site concerning New Line cinema's claim that "The Golden Compass" is "entirely in harmony with Catholic teaching"

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