28 February, 2011

Pedophilia a ‘sexual orientation’ experts tell Parliament | LifeSiteNews.com

...and on and on it goes. The distance we've traveled since my youth on what was considered moral or acceptable is immense, and we're picking up speed. You can choose to see this as a race to the top or to the bottom, but no one can doubt the direction we're headed.

Pedophilia a ‘sexual orientation’ experts tell Parliament | LifeSiteNews.com

Nova Scotia man who admitted euthanizing his wife now blames wife’s doctor | LifeSiteNews.com

... and the plot thickens?

Nova Scotia man who admitted euthanizing his wife now blames wife’s doctor | LifeSiteNews.com

Nothing sounds as pure as the innocent laughter of a child! Treat yourself to a 2minute smile.

Christian convert on death row out of Afghanistan | Holy Post | National Post

Christian convert on death row out of Afghanistan | Holy Post | National Post

Diagnosing the 'implosion' of Benedict's Vatican | National Catholic Reporter

Diagnosing the 'implosion' of Benedict's Vatican | National Catholic Reporter

Nation of Islam leader Minister Louis Farrakhan predicts uprising coming to America - chicagotribune.com

Louis Farrakan has been smoking something... that's for sure. It sounds like he has converted from Islam to the Church of Scientology. It would seem that he overlooked the Koranic punishments he previously supported regarding apostates. Either that or he figures he's is safe behind the lawyers of the Church. Who knows? Given the ferocity of Scientology's defense of its members, perhaps he has put himself beyond the reach of any Islamist who might see 'taking him out' as a ticket to paradise. 

Murderous jihadist or Scientologist lawyers? Pretty much a toss-up in my books. No matter who loses... western civilization wins!

Nation of Islam leader Minister Louis Farrakhan predicts uprising coming to America - chicagotribune.com

Al Qaeda Finds Itself at a Crossroads - News Analysis - NYTimes.com

No one can yet know what the long term effects of the revolutionary spirit that's sweeping through the Arab nations, but if this analysis is correct, this has got to be counted as 'good news'.

Al Qaeda Finds Itself at a Crossroads - News Analysis - NYTimes.com

Surgeon's act of compassion | Adelaide Now

'Compassion'?? A Doctors puts a bullet into someone's head can (IMO) be called many things... but I don't think 'compassion' is an appropriate word. I sincerely hope that this does not become standard medical practice! It may be 'cost efficient' but it's hardly compatible with the Hippocratic Oath!!!

Surgeon's act of compassion | Adelaide Now

Fr. Rosica vs. “The Catholic Taliban”

Socon or Bust » Blog Archive » Fr. Rosica vs. “The Catholic Taliban”

Pondering Abortion in the African American Community | Archdiocese of Washington

Msgr. Charles Pope opines on the abortion billboard controversy in New York City.

Pondering Abortion in the African American Community | Archdiocese of Washington

Unpleasant Truths « The Gospel in the Digital Age

Here is the 'offensive' billboard ad that NYC officials ordered removed
The pro-life/pro-choice debate and the issue of freedom of expression. It seems that speech is 'free' so long as it doesn't argue for the rights of the unborn.

Unpleasant Truths « The Gospel in the Digital Age

John Dominic Crossan's 'blasphemous' portrait of Jesus - CNN.com

The 'Jesus Seminar' has spent the better part of the past 25 years trying to strip Christ of his divinity. With 'friends' like them, no wonder belief in Christ as our Lord, Savior and God is being diminished in the eyes of so many.

John Dominic Crossan's 'blasphemous' portrait of Jesus - CNN.com

'The King's Speech' wins best-picture Oscar - CTV News

'The King's Speech' wins best-picture Oscar - CTV News

27 February, 2011

American political ad opposing abortion - Thank God we live in Canada

So just how far have we progressed? Comparing ancient Rome with the USA

Outside the Asylum: So just how far have we progressed?

Can a priest simply refuse to hear a confession? | Fr. Z's Blog – What Does The Prayer Really Say?

QUAERITUR: Can a priest simply refuse to hear a confession? | Fr. Z's Blog – What Does The Prayer Really Say?

» Update on Said Musa | Denny Burk

» Update on Said Musa | Denny Burk

Obama decision on gay marriage shows government trying to abolish God - Yahoo! News

Obama decision on gay marriage shows government trying to abolish God - Yahoo! News

Prayers, please, for baby Ava

The hermeneutic of continuity: Prayers, please, for baby Ava

Why We Write About Grief - NYTimes.com

An interesting article about a universal human experience... grief.


Why We Write About Grief - NYTimes.com

Must Presidents Defend Laws They Don’t Like? - NYTimes.com

No matter what one's position is on same-sex marriage, the fact that the executive branch of the US government has decided to ignore a law passed by the legislative branch is worthy of discussion. The Canadian equivalent would be for the Prime Minister's Office instructing the civil service to ignore a law passed by Parliament. This is a dangerous step to take as it moves a society away from a democratic process and closer to governance by executive fiat.


As I said, it's something to ponder irrespective of the particulars of the gay marriage issue.

Must Presidents Defend Laws They Don’t Like? - NYTimes.com

Scientists Are Cleared of Misuse of Data - NYTimes.com

It's hard to deny that our climate is changing, yet many still hold to the view that it is. The recent brouhaha about scientists manipulating data to justify their conclusions is often raised by those who do not believe that the situation is as dire as many scientists profess. We may not be headed for 'global warming' (a disappointment to we frozen Canucks!) but there can be little doubt that our eco-system is definitely in a state of flux due to the many chemicals and gases we are pumping out into the atmosphere.

Scientists Are Cleared of Misuse of Data - NYTimes.com

NHLer helps man's best friend

A little something 'nice' to balance the abortion ad!

NHLer helps man's best friend

Anxiety on all sides of upcoming House hearing on radicalization of U.S. Muslims

Anxiety on all sides of upcoming House hearing on radicalization of U.S. Muslims

Three Aspects of Anxiety And How to Overcome Them – A Meditation on the Gospel for the 8th Sunday of the Year | Archdiocese of Washington

Three Aspects of Anxiety And How to Overcome Them – A Meditation on the Gospel for the 8th Sunday of the Year | Archdiocese of Washington

22 February, 2011

A bit of humor that's on the edge... but the writer in me couldn't resist!

For all my grammatically correct friends.

On his 74th birthday, a man got a gift certificate from his wife.


The certificate paid for a visit to a medicine man living on a nearby reservation who was rumored to have a wonderful cure for erectile dysfunction.


After being persuaded, he drove to the reservation, handed his ticket to the medicine man and wondered what he was in for.


The old man handed a potion to him, and with a grip on his shoulder, warned,"This is a powerful medicine. You take only a  teaspoonful and then say '1-2-3.' "


When you do, you will become more manly than you have ever been in your life and you can perform as long as you want."


The  man was encouraged.  As he walked away, he turned and asked, "How do I stop the medicine from working?"
 
"Your partner must say '1-2-3-4,'" he responded, "but when she does, the medicine will not work again until the next full moon."


He was very eager to see if it worked so he went home, showered, shaved, took a spoonful of the medicine and then invited his wife to join him in the bedroom.


When she came in, he took off his clothes and said, "1-2-3!"  Immediately, he was the manliest of men.


His wife was excited and began throwing off her clothes and then she asked "What was the 1-2-3 for?"


And that, boys and girls, is why we should never end our sentences with a preposition, because we
could end up with a dangling participle.

There’s no such thing as the Bible and never has been – CNN Belief Blog - CNN.com Blogs




My Take: There’s no such thing as the Bible and never has been – CNN Belief Blog - CNN.com Blogs

What porn did to a marriage – CNN Belief Blog - CNN.com Blogs

What porn did to a marriage – CNN Belief Blog - CNN.com Blogs

Let's Get Real - Whatever That Means

Freedom Through Truth: Let's Get Real - Whatever That Means

A Romp Through Theories on Origins of Life - NYTimes.com






A Romp Through Theories on Origins of Life - NYTimes.com

B. N. Nathanson, 84, Dies - Changed Sides on Abortion - NYTimes.com

B. N. Nathanson, 84, Dies - Changed Sides on Abortion - NYTimes.com

Oscars 2011

Here's an interesting summary page with lots of Oscar links.

Oscars 2011

5 possible Earth-like habitable planets found - Technology & Science - CBC News

5 possible Earth-like habitable planets found - Technology & Science - CBC News

Australian priests rebel against new Mass | Holy Post | National Post

Some rebellion! A dozen priests out of 1600 don't like the new translation. Too bad boys. It's time to get with the program.


This is not some sort of attempt to stifle the 'aggornamento' (renewal) of Vatican II. It is an expression of the sister imperative, 'resourcement' (connecting to our traditions). In other words, it simply brings the english text into closer harmony with the other languages the church uses as it better reflects the text of the original latin.


Fr. Tim

Australian priests rebel against new Mass | Holy Post | National Post

Who Are You Calling "Anti-Science"? | Feature | Articles

InsideCatholic.com | Who Are You Calling "Anti-Science"? | Feature | Articles

Scientism is not Science – Toward a Christian Admiration for True Science | Archdiocese of Washington

Scientism is not Science – Toward a Christian Admiration for True Science | Archdiocese of Washington

21 February, 2011

Newman’s Assent of Faith | First Things

Cardinal John Henry Newman
"Newman countered the Enlightenment’s understanding of reason, a reduced notion of reason, which sets itself as the judge of all truth and demands scientific evidence, arguing that faith in God is possible without formal evidence. In fact, as Newman points out, many truths are received implicitly. Often people cannot explain what they know to be true and yet this does not diminish the truth of their claims. "

Read more by clicking on the link below.

Newman’s Assent of Faith | First Things

Love your enemies: B16 reflects upon this Christian imperative

VATICAN CITY, 20 FEB 2011 (VIS) - In his remarks before praying the Angelus today with faithful gathered in St. Peter's Square, the Pope turned his attention to this Sunday's Bible readings which speak to us, he said, "of God's desire to bring mankind to share in His life: 'You shall be holy, for I the Lord your God am holy' as it says in the Book of Leviticus.


  "With these words and the precepts that follow", the Holy Father added, "the Lord invites the people He chose to remain faithful to their covenant with Him by following His path, and He founds social legislation on the commandment: 'you shall love your neighbour as yourself'. If, then, we listen to Jesus, in Whom God took a mortal body in order to come close to all men and to reveal His infinite love for us, we rediscover this same call, this same bold objective".


  The Pope continued: "Jesus Himself says: 'Love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you, so that you may be children of your Father in heaven'. Those who welcome the Lord into their own lives and love Him with all their hearts are able to make a new start. They manage to accomplish the will of God: that of creating a new form of existence, inspired by love and destined for eternity. ... If we are truly aware of this fact and our lives are profoundly moulded around it, then our witness becomes clear, eloquent and effective".


  The Holy Father then went on to recall the fact that 22 February marks the Feast of the Cathedra of St. Peter, the "first of the Apostles", to whom "Christ entrusted the role of master and pastor for the spiritual guidance of the People of God, that they might be raised unto heaven. Thus", he said, "I exhort all pastors 'to assimilate that new style of life which was inaugurated by the Lord Jesus and taken up by the Apostles'".


  In his greetings delivered in various languages after the Angelus prayer, the Pope emphasised the importance of reconciliation. "When we suffer because of evil, persecution or injustice, let us avoid retribution, revenge and hatred, and pray for our persecutors", he said. "'Overcome evil with good'. Let us entrust all these adversities to God in order to achieve freedom and spiritual peace".


  Finally, speaking Spanish, the Holy Father reaffirmed that today's liturgy invites us "to the fullness of Christian life and perfection of charity by forgiving our enemies and praying for our persecutors, which is the source of lasting reconciliation".
ANG/                                                                                                VIS 20110221 (440)

When faith and learning collide; just what are kids saying these days? | Full Comment | National Post

Paul Russell: When faith and learning collide; just what are kids saying these days? | Full Comment | National Post

Early universe revealed at 4 trillion degrees – This Just In - CNN.com Blogs

Early universe revealed at 4 trillion degrees – This Just In - CNN.com Blogs

Jesuit James Martin on his guide to (almost) everything | Holy Post | National Post

Interview: Jesuit James Martin on his guide to (almost) everything | Holy Post | National Post

Christians targeted for persecution in Iran

Press releases - Christian Solidarity Worldwide

18 February, 2011

L.A. Att'y Donald Steier: "Many Cases" of Abuse Claims by Catholic Priests Are "False"

TheMediaReport.com :: L.A. Att'y Donald Steier: "Many Cases" of Abuse Claims by Catholic Priests Are "False"

Rational Human Beings - An Oxymoron?

Great post on Michael Brandon's blog about what it means to be 'rational'.

Freedom Through Truth: Rational Human Beings - An Oxymoron?

Twisted Physics: 7 Mind-Blowing Findings | Spooky Entanglement, Antimatter & Nuclear Fusion | LiveScience

Twisted Physics: 7 Mind-Blowing Findings | Spooky Entanglement, Antimatter & Nuclear Fusion | LiveScience

Guilty Until Proven Innocent? | Daily News | NCRegister.com

I absolutely agree that this is a major concern for priests. It is another example of our not being properly dealt with or respected by our Bishops! If they would actually have followed their own procedures instead of trying to cover up for actual predators, this would most likely not be an issue today. Alas they have historically been more concerned with protecting their own reputations and that of their diocese that they were about either the victims or their good priests.


It has effected how we minister. I will never allow myself to be in a situation when I am alone with any children, even for an instant. I insist on the children being brought to the church for confessions so that I can use the confessional rather than using a room at the school as a means of protecting myself from false allegations. Parishes everywhere have dropped their youth and child ministries because we cannot take the chance. I used to raise funds every year from friends so that I could take a busload of kids to an Ottawa Senators game. I stopped doing that five years ago as it was becoming too difficult to find chaperones to come with us.


It's a sad, sad situation... but it's not the faithful priests who are at fault. It's now squarely on the shoulders of our Bishops. This more than anything is what chill's me to the bone given their terrible record to date.

Guilty Until Proven Innocent? | Daily News | NCRegister.com

17 February, 2011

Quebec court upholds fines for cabbie’s ‘religious artifacts’

Quebec court upholds fines for cabbie’s ‘religious artifacts’

Defunding Planned Parenthood:'Let the Abortion Providers Provide for Themselves' - U.s. - Catholic Online

Defunding Planned Parenthood:'Let the Abortion Providers Provide for Themselves' - U.s. - Catholic Online

China's magic goldfish trick under fire - The Globe and Mail

Excuse me? They don't complain when people demanding freedom get tossed into jail or run down by tanks... but make a goldfish do a trick and it's a crime?


What the hell is going on in this world? Things are upside down!

China's magic goldfish trick under fire - The Globe and Mail

In Grand Jury's Wake, "We Have Fallen Short"

SIGH... When will the Bishop's finally get it through their heads that they can no longer rely on 'in-house' investigations of sexual abuse allegations. The protocol in Canada and the USA is supposed to include an automatic referral to civil authorities to investigate. Yes, some priests will fall victim to false allegations, but we should have enough faith in the justice system that the names of anyone falsely accused will be cleared.


Besides this, the Church has no one but itself to blame for putting priests in this dangerous position. If the Bishops would have dealt with these issues properly in the first place, innocent priests would not be in such a tenuous position.


It is not the priests who are letting the Church down. It's the Bishops!

Whispers in the Loggia: In Grand Jury's Wake, "We Have Fallen Short"

South Dakota Shelves Bill on Killings in Defense of the Unborn - NYTimes.com

A ham-handed attempt that produced a VERY BAD bill. Everyone, pro-life or pro-choice should be offended by this legislation. Thankfully it will probably never become law, but it does point to some of the stupidity around the abortion issue.


Read the article for yourself for the NYT and see what you think.

South Dakota Shelves Bill on Killings in Defense of the Unborn - NYTimes.com

15 February, 2011

I Am In Awe of Such Faith | Blogs | NCRegister.com


Dear Reader,

Please... if you read and respond to only one article on this blog today, make it this one. You will not regret it. It will move the heart (and hopefully much more) in all of us.

With many thanks,

Fr. Tim

I Am In Awe of Such Faith | Blogs | NCRegister.com

The 'Hard Road' of Catholics

Beautiful inside & out!
Dianne Wood, a friend of this blog and a frequent letter writer within the virtual and real pages of the National Post remarked the other day that Catholics are called to walk a 'hard road' in these times. She offered this in defense of an argument that such a journey can be successfully accomplished with faith, discipline and the grace of God. As always, she is so RIGHT ON!


I wanted to let her know of my appreciation for her witness that I posted the comment below in the relevant thread on the Holy Post. I post it again here to ensure that she (and others who do the same) might find it to be of encouragement in this difficult times for those who argue in defense of the Catholic faith and Church.


---------------------------


Dianne: You are so right! It is a road made hard by the sinfulness of clergy who both enabled and committed these heinous crimes. Yet we continue to believe in the truth the Church contains, soiled but not stained by human sin and continue to stay true to our course no matter how hard the journey becomes. Christ himself gives us the model to follow in his passion, death and subsequent resurrection. He continued through the entire paschal mystery not of his own desire, but in obedience to his Father and in reparation for our sins. If we are to find ourselves heaped under from the abuse and taunts of others, we know that we are securely walking in his footsteps. It is the place we are called to be if we too want to journey through death to eternal life. Yes?


Fr. Tim

What has more bacteria: food court trays or gas station toilets? - The Globe and Mail

What has more bacteria: food court trays or gas station toilets? - The Globe and Mail

Preparing for the upcoming season of Lent

Lent, Ramadan, Tisha B'Av...virtually every religion has its own version of a time set  each year during which adherents deny themselves some of life’s ordinary pleasures as penance for their failings of the year past. For Christians and Muslims, it is common during Lent and Ramadan to refrain from eating foods and forego indulging in other favorite passions.  It's their participation in a collective mea culpa, mea maxima culpa; a shared act of atonement for sin. The weeks leading to the Jewish days of Tisha B’Av and Yom Kippur include certain rites of purification when orthodox Jews ritually cleanse themselves. It is to make clear the change of state from sin to grace using the cleansing power of water as exteriorly revealing an inner change.

During Lent, individual acts of abstinence and penance undertaken by Christians of various denominations seem to take on greater significance when joined by sharing the experience communally. Attendance at daily mass rises as practicing Catholics devote extra time from their daily schedule to come together in time dedicated to communal prayer. Countless numbers of recitations of the rosary, novenas and other shared acts of devotion will also be offered in atonement for the failings of others, living and dead.

People unfamiliar with the need for ritual or collective acts of atonement can sometimes find the reasoning behind such deliberate privations unfathomable. Even some within the Christian family cannot countenance or understand what benefit could come from these traditional Lenten practices. The tradition of almsgiving is matched by their instinct to charity that moves them. It’s easy to grasp. So too can they understand the need for times of fast and purging to pay for price for consuming too many sweets and treats nonstop since Christmas (speaking personally). For many a quick glance in a mirror can show the need for a period of self discipline and denial to bring ourselves back into shape.

However, atonement prayer is outside their personal zeitgeist. They feel no personal need to be cleansed, spiritually or otherwise and can see little value in denying ourselves that which we enjoy as a consequence for past failures.  For many Christians, such ritual privations and oblations make perfect sense. They know it is essential in any relationship to spend regular effort and time to demonstrate our repentance for acts of the past which injured others. As believers, they see themselves as being in relationship with a loving and personal God. Lent offers  an opportunity to devote time and attention each day to reflect upon how we have relationally failed God and others over the past year and learn to do better in the future. The purpose of their penance is not as a bribe fearfully offered to a vengeful God, but an acknowledgment of the failings of those who are in relationship with Him.

Put in religious terms, the sufferings are undertaken to express concretely  contrition, which allows us to appreciate future pleasures that we share in our daily life. Don't they say that absence makes the heart grow fonder? As money spent on roses bought for another rather than for ourselves can say both ‘I love you’ and ‘I’m sorry’, time spent in prayer or money offered as alms rather than consumed for self satisfaction can benefit us all as they strengthen relationships that are considered essential for happiness in life. It would benefit us all to take such regular times dedicated regularly to making ourselves better for ourselves and for the welfare of others.

As fewer and fewer people observe the practices of Lent, another wisdom  is in danger of being forgotten outside of a shrinking community: that for the good of all, it’s vital to take time for annual frank self assessment, contrition and correction.

Groundless Gossip « The Gospel in the Digital Age

Groundless Gossip « The Gospel in the Digital Age

Man ties machine on Day 1 of "Jeopardy!" showdown - latimes.com

Man ties machine on Day 1 of "Jeopardy!" showdown - latimes.com

14 February, 2011

More Shame on the Church - NYTimes.com

IF these events happened after the Diocese committed to transparency and cooperation (2002 at the latest with the creation of the Dallas Protocols) and accepted the requirement of immediate suspension of the priest involved and reporting of the allegation to the Police, then 'charge away'. If Catholic leaders today commit such an offense as not following the current laws and protocols they should and no doubt will be charged and prosecuted to the full extent of the law.


IF HOWEVER these events took place prior to 2002, in a Diocese that still was guided by the ethos of putting the interests of preserving the taint of scandal rather than the legitimate questions of justice and protection for the victims of these predators, then it is little more than an example of 'piling on' by the NYT. We all know that the Church hierarchy acted abominably prior to getting caught with the pants down, figuratively, literally, legally and morally before finally being humiliated into accepting the Dallas Protocol under the weight of scorn and opprobrium that had been justly dumped upon them.


If members of the hierarchy acted as is alleged in Philadelphia AFTER committing to the faithful to do otherwise, then (to quote a good friend) "we may yet see 'cones-in-chains'. And not for being defensores fidei." To which I can only add... and rightly so.

More Shame on the Church - NYTimes.com

144 theologians confront hierarchy | National Catholic Reporter

144 theologians confront hierarchy | National Catholic Reporter

PM lets Cheryl Gallant walk plank for ‘incomprehensible’ maritime musing - The Globe and Mail

Sad, but once again the local Member of Parliament that represents the majority of the diocese of Pembroke is making headlines for all the wrong reasons. I say it's sad because she is an avid (and usually more capable) defender of the pro-life agenda. Now the local pro-choice advocates are heaping opprobrium on their opponents in this debate by ridiculing them as being associated with other malapropisms. Such are the tides of life in these parts. I take comfort in knowing that the tides may ebb and flow but time marches on towards its ultimate fulfillment in Christ.


Such a perspective helps keep fresh one's hope and energy in these contests in the public square. It speaks to the need for all who argue for the enshrinement in legislation that which our faith teaches to remain personally connected to God, both in His church and individually. This is nourished and sustained best through an active personal prayer life and communal celebrations of faith. It is also sustained by days of peace and quiet such as I am enjoying today. (Monday: the cleric's Sabbath.) I give thanks for the ability to both minister as a priest of Jesus Christ and for the gift of days such as today.


I pray that God inspire and touch the hearts of ALL people involved in these debates. It will do all of us good!


PM lets Cheryl Gallant walk plank for ‘incomprehensible’ maritime musing - The Globe and Mail

Cardinal Ravasi Urges Dialogue With Nonbelievers

ZENIT - Cardinal Ravasi Urges Dialogue With Nonbelievers

...and on a lighter note after all these heavy issues

Each Friday night after work, sun, snow or rain, Jack , being a Newfie, would fire up his outdoor grill and cook a moose steak. But all of Jack's neighbours were Catholic. And since it was Lent, they were forbidden from eating meat on Friday. The delicious aroma from the grilled moose steaks was causing such a problem for the Catholic faithful that they finally talked to their priest. 

The priest came to visit Jack, and suggested that he become a Catholic. After several classes and much study, Jack attended Mass, and as the priest sprinkled holy water over him, he said: "You were born a Protestant and raised a Protestant, but now you are a Catholic."

Jack's neighbours were greatly relieved, until Friday night arrived, and the wonderful aroma of grilled moose filled the neighbourhood. The priest was called immediately by the neighbours, and, as he rushed into Jack's yard, clutching a rosary and prepared to scold him, he stopped and watched in amazement.


There stood Jack, clutching a small bottle of holy water which he carefully sprinkled over the grilling meat and chanted: "You wuz born a moose, you wuz raised a moose, but now you is a Codfish.

Gay rights groups attack iPhone confession app for Roman Catholics | World news | The Observer

Give me a break. What did they expect from something that the Church approved of as a preparation for confession? I have not purchased this app but I hardly find this surprising.


It is the teaching of the Catholic Church that homosexual acts are intrinsically sinful because they are unchaste. In other words, they are sexual acts that take place outside of the sacrament of marriage and are therefore a major sin against chastity. One should not expect a church instrument to say anything else. In fact, it WOULD be a story within the Catholic world if the app answered in any other way but as it stands, it doesn't really budge the 'surprise meter'.


Fr. Tim

Gay rights groups attack iPhone confession app for Roman Catholics | World news | The Observer

Morality without Religion?

Morality without Religion? 

Can you be a moral person without religion? Yes and no. It all depends on what you mean by 'moral' and what you mean by 'religion'. What most people mean by 'moral' in our society is "Try to be a nice person. Be normal. Have relatively good manners. Don't do any of the big bad ones like killing someone or stealing or being a pervert. Be involved in a good cause of some sort--like the soup kitchen or saving the Amazonian rain forest." Morality for the post Christian masses doesn't really have anything to do with a set moral code or particular rules to follow. It is more a sense of 'feeling that you are a moral person'. Part of this feeling 'moral' is tolerance of everyone else and outrage at hypocritical Christian type people who try to force their version of 'morality' on others. So can you be 'moral' in this way without being religious? Of course. In fact true religion would be downright counterproductive to this sort of 'morality'. But they don't mean 'true religion' they mean 'going to church.'

Can you be moral without going to church? Yes. Just like you can be immoral and go to church. However, there is more to it than that.…


Click here to read the rest...

A kiss that lasts forever, literally - The Globe and Mail

What a magnificent response to the idiotic state in Malaysia which warned Muslims not to engage in such 'immoral acts' on Valentine's Day. It is little more than a variation on the dancing marathon contests of years gone by, although I do think they took the 'potty issue' a little too far. Chacun a son gôut! It's campy but hardly a crime. Click on the link below to see what I mean.

A kiss that lasts forever, literally - The Globe and Mail

Clothing prices to rise 10% starting in spring - The Globe and Mail

Clothing prices to rise 10% starting in spring - The Globe and Mail

Do others have the right to define what’s ethical for me?

BIG BLUE WAVE: Do others have the right to define what’s ethical for me?

09 February, 2011

A survey from the late night talk shows on American politics

Fact-Checking The Church Of Scientology: Journalist Lawrence Wright : NPR

Fact-Checking The Church Of Scientology: Journalist Lawrence Wright : NPR

Ultimate Biblical Run through Jerusalem!

Defenders of the Catholic Faith : Hosted by Stephen K. Ray » Ultimate Biblical Run through Jerusalem!

Salvation - a User's Manual and FAQ's

I like the way that Michael uses everyday imagery and events to help explain the Christian message. Well done Michael!

P.S.  What's up with your photo? I thought you were supposed to wait for the flamé to extinguish before eating!

Freedom Through Truth: Salvation - a User's Manual and FAQ's

Christian Number-Crunching | First Things

George Weigel's latest column.

Christian Number-Crunching | First Things

Forgive Me, Father, for I Have Linked - NYTimes.com

How bizarre! The one paper that does the best at explaining the new iphone app for Catholic confessions is Maureen Dawd's column on the NYT website. 


Will wonders ever cease?

Forgive Me, Father, for I Have Linked - NYTimes.com

08 February, 2011

Pray for persecuted Christians

Socon or Bust » Blog Archive » Pray for persecuted Christians

Biblical Evidence for the Perpetual Virginity of Mary | Feature | Articles

InsideCatholic.com | Biblical Evidence for the Perpetual Virginity of Mary | Feature | Articles

An invitation to the youth of the world to gather with the Pope

An app for the penitent: Bless me, Apple, for I have sinned - The Globe and Mail

Here's a wonderful example of how the MSM has no idea how to report religious stories. The headline and first paragraph state that the church has approved the use of an iphone app to be forgiven of personal sin... in lieu evidently of going to confession.


You have to read all the way to the last line to discover that absolution still requires a trip to the confessional... "for now, anyway."

An app for the penitent: Bless me, Apple, for I have sinned - The Globe and Mail

Jerusalem UFO 'Almost Certainly a Hoax' : Discovery News

Jerusalem UFO 'Almost Certainly a Hoax' : Discovery News

Anti-Christian violence in Indonesia especially alarming | National Catholic Reporter

Anti-Christian violence in Indonesia especially alarming | National Catholic Reporter

07 February, 2011

Grading the 2011 Super Bowl ads | Posted Sports | National Post

Another compilation of the Super Bowl ads. One or two repeats from previous posting but lots of new ones.

Grading the 2011 Super Bowl ads | Posted Sports | National Post

Video: The 2011 Super Bowl's commercial crop

For we Canadians who missed them.

Video: The 2011 Super Bowl's commercial crop

Opening up the border

The Ottawa Citizen editorial board raises some interesting questions as Canada and the USA move closer to the reality of 'continental security' rather than 'border security'.

Opening up the border

Avoiding the blame game on abuse | National Catholic Reporter

Avoiding the blame game on abuse | National Catholic Reporter

Every Tom Dick and Satan Knows Scripture

Every Tom Dick and Satan Knows Scripture

And Satan Knows It Best

Christianity is split largely between the Catholics and the Protestants, though there are so many splits among the Protestants that it is hard to tell denomination from denomination without some kind of score card. But, the Catholics don't get off so easily either. Catholics have abandoned their faith in droves, some surfacing with our Protestant brothers and sisters, but many just lapsing into nowhere land....
Click on link below to read entire post.

Freedom Through Truth: Every Tom Dick and Satan Knows Scripture

Who will defend Mideast Christians? - USATODAY.com

Who will defend Mideast Christians? - USATODAY.com

Cancelled debate highlights tension among Canadian Muslims | Holy Post | National Post

Cancelled debate highlights tension among Canadian Muslims | Holy Post | National Post

Science, Galileo and the Catholic Church

Science, Galileo and the Catholic Church

A little Catholic humor

A guy goes into a restaurant and is greeted by the hostess, who asks: “Smoking or non-smoking?” “Non-smoking,” he replies. He is seated and the waiter comes over to his table to take his drink order. “I’ll have a Coke,” he states. The waite......r says: “Diet or Regular?” “Um, regular.” “Caffeine or caffeine-free?” “Uh, with caffeine.” The drink is brought to his table and the guy orders his food. The waiter asks what kind of dressing on the salad, “Italian, French, Thousand Island, raspberry vinaigrette?” He says: “Italian,” and the waiter immediately comes back with “regular Italian or fat-free?” “Regular,” says the man, with a hint of impatience in his voice.

And it goes on, with the steak order: “how do you want that prepared, rare, medium rare, medium, medium well, or well done?” and “how do you want your vegetables: raw, steamed, baked, boiled, blanched or fried?” and “how would you like your potatoes: baked, French fried, or mashed?”


Finally, the poor man has had enough and looks up to heaven and shouts: “I can’t TAKE all these choices!” He then turns his prayer to his patron saint saying: “St. Francis, HELP ME—help me with all these decisions!”


At that moment a big voice comes booming down and says: “Assisi, Xavier or DeSales?” 


(Thanks to Sue at BIG BLUE WAVE - Canada's best pro-life blog!)

05 February, 2011

Muslim families in Winnipeg want children excused from certain classes | Holy Post | National Post

Muslim families in Winnipeg want children excused from certain classes | Holy Post | National Post

Why do religious leaders fall to temptations? Who is responsible?


Another one bite's the dust.” The rock super-group Queen probably never intended to provide a theme song for Christian leaders – but in the wake of the continuing sex abuse scandals among priests, ministers and religious leaders, the lyric seems to be an appropriate mantra for believers.

The latest leader to fall is Fr. Tom Eutreneuer, former executive director of HLI (Human Life International) and a Catholic priest of the Palm Beach Diocese in Florida. He has had to step down from his position and has had his religious faculties suspended after he admitted to inappropriate sexual activities with a woman who came to him for an exorcism. HLI is one of the largest pro-life Catholic organizations in North America and has been considered to be among the most fervent and outspoken voices promulgating the call to chastity and obedience to Roman Catholic sexual ethics.

This phenomena is not unique to the Catholic faith. Church leaders from Ted Haggart to Jim Baker and Jimmy Swaggart have been revealed to fall into the category of religious leaders who have not practised what they preach. Of course, there have been many other examples of priests and clergy of various stripes who have been convicted and removed for similar offences.

The question needs to be asked: Why does it seem that so many religious leaders are falling prey to these wicked and immoral acts?

The trite but correct answer is “the devil made them do it!”

To say this does not absolve clergy of their offences, nor does it lift from their shoulders the personal culpability they carry for their crimes. But it is clear, that with rare exceptions, they did not intend to fall into a state of sin and become an obstacle for others to believe in the 'good news' they preached when they first began their ministry. So it seems appropriate to look for whatever it is that turns men who start with noble intentions but find themselves in such an evil predicament.

C.S. Lewis in his book “The Screwtape Letters” offers insight into this phenomena. The book is a series of letters between two devils ('Screwtape' and 'Wormwood') in which the senior is teaching the junior devil how to win souls for Satan. The first step in the process according to Lewis is for the devil to convince his target that there is no such thing as evil, but rather everything is simply a matter of choice. By removing such concepts of sin and evil from ones mind, the devil will soon be able to confuse the believer such that soon he believes that he is justified in acting in ways that were previously considered 'wrong' or 'sinful'.

Yet the question needs to be asked: why are some many Christian leaders falling prey to this trap? The answer to that is easy to understand! The devil will target those who promote 'goodness' and 'grace' because they are his true enemy. He need not bother with those who have already decided to live as if sin does not exist. They are his already! For this reason, the forces of evil can focus more and more upon those who claim to follow Christ, especially as the numbers of nonbelievers continues to grow. Like any General engaged in combat, the forces of evil will endeavour to destroy the 'command and control' functions of their adversary, to facilitate their goal of confusing their enemies and thus gathering as many souls for Satan as they can. Religious leaders must be ever vigilant for this demonic siren call which leads them to corrupt the Christian message, for they are clearly targets of those forces who work against them.

Christians believe that the road that leads to salvation is difficult and narrow but the road to hell is wide and easy to take. It's a tribute to the realities and power of evil that the devil can effectively seduce so many. His capacity to plant self-deception in the hearts and minds of some religious leaders ensures that there are many who take a seat on the bus that runs the 'Highway to Hell' rather than walking the 'Stairway to Heaven'.

Movement to expose and defund Planned Parenthood - Politics & Policy - Catholic Online

Movement to expose and defund Planned Parenthood - Politics & Policy - Catholic Online

The Catholic Church Wants To Cure You of Witchiness

I post this in response to the earlier article about converting Pagans to Catholicism to provide a little balance.

The Catholic Church Wants To Cure You of Witchiness

04 February, 2011

Something to make every Canadian outside of Toronto smile!

New iPhone app aims to help Catholics go to Confession :: Catholic News Agency (CNA)

But how do you keep them from texting during their confession? (grin)

New iPhone app aims to help Catholics go to Confession :: Catholic News Agency (CNA)

Did Jesus Exist? | Blogs | NCRegister.com

Did Jesus Exist? | Blogs | NCRegister.com

Volkswagen trolls the dark side of the 'Force' for inspiration - great for a smile on a snowy Friday

Irish priests claim new Mass translation is ‘elitist and sexist’  | CatholicHerald.co.uk

Irish priests claim new Mass translation is ‘elitist and sexist’ | CatholicHerald.co.uk

Worldwide Paradigm Shift Underway

The Catholic Knight: Worldwide Paradigm Shift Underway

03 February, 2011

Moral scepticism versus Sam Harris's moral realism - ABC Religion & Ethics - Opinion

"In recent years, Sam Harris has become a leading figure in the rational scrutiny of religions and religious cultures, earning himself a place as a prominent "New Atheist," along with Richard Dawkins, Daniel Dennett, and Christopher Hitchens. In The Moral Landscape, he pushes his agenda a step further, examining the nature of morality from a secular viewpoint and offering prescriptions for change.
In particular, he contests the moral credentials of religion, argues against popular understandings of free will, and savages moral relativism.

Though The Moral Landscape contains much technical material from philosophy and neuroscience, Harris makes it accessible. He has an enviable gift for vivid phrasing and clear exposition of difficult concepts, and he undoubtedly has much to teach us. Many passages are timely and convincing. That said, however, morality is a tricky phenomenon, and I am left with reservations."

To read the rest of the article, click on the hyperlink below.

Moral scepticism versus Sam Harris's moral realism - ABC Religion & Ethics - Opinion

Vatican to host AIDS prevention, care conference - AP News Wire, Associated Press News - Salon.com

Vatican to host AIDS prevention, care conference - AP News Wire, Associated Press News - Salon.com

How to convert witches to Catholicism – Telegraph Blogs

Lady Janus... this one's for you! Have fun!

How to convert witches to Catholicism – Telegraph Blogs

WOW!! UFO buzzes Jerusalem? AMAZING VIDEO!!!!

"Speaking Truth in Love": From the Capital, The Cardinal on the Discourse

Whispers in the Loggia: "Speaking Truth in Love": From the Capital, The Cardinal on the Discourse

Personalities Of The Catholic Combox | Blogs | NCRegister.com

"The comment box in the blogosphere, or combox, is the wild wild west of the internet.  In the combox you can and will meet all kinds of strange and wondrous characters.
The combox in the Catholic interwebs has its own cast of characters.  I suspect that your average Catholic blog reader probably has never, or very rarely, left a comment on a post.  They read what you have to say and if you are really, really lucky, they might think about it for a moment. Those are the readers.  Commenters are a different ball of wax.  Commenters, and you know who you are, have opinions and they…well they have opinions.
Having been around the Catholic blogging game for a few years now, certain easily identifiable personality types emerge in the combox.  I hear tale that there are those who have actually read your entire post and write to make a cogent and civil point to add to the discussion.  I hear tales of these commenters—and unicorns.  Unicorns mostly.  Although I am quite sure that this description will apply to everyone who comments on this post.  Quite sure. ;-)"  .....


Read the entire article by clicking on the link below


Personalities Of The Catholic Combox | Blogs | NCRegister.com

02 February, 2011

Who declared 'Science' the winner?

Who declared that science was the single discipline that gets to determine what is to be considered the path to discover 'truth' in western society? I mean, we have always accepted different means of discerning truth. Now the scientific method is presented by atheists as the means by which societal and moral decisions are to be made.


Do the lessons of history not contain truth? Is philosophy no longer a font from which we can find meaning to the events of our life? Will I need a biologist to prove that I love my vocation as a priest? Do you need one to prove that you love those close to you? For that matter, could science even pronounce on such subjects that it have nothing to do with?


Science cannot explain love, faith, joy. Science cannot tell me why a magnificent sunrise is capable of moving my mind and soul in ways that are hard to explain. Science cannot explain the genius of a Mozart or the artist's eye of Picasso. Science cannot even tell me why I am alive! (although in its defense it doesn't claim to answer the 'why' questions - it simply rules such a question as being unworthy of addressing).


Science has not proven that it is capable of providing a yardstick by which to determine the morality of its own creations. People love to castigate the Church for the failings of its clergy, yet as Carl Sagan points out, scientists have produced immense evil in their lust for knowledge (watch some tape of scientists testifying before Congress on the necessity of funding the development of building bigger and more horrific instruments of war before their 'enemies' do).  Scientists are given a 'pass' on moral condemnation of their creations because we are told we must not condemn science for the human failings of a few scientists. Funny how that seems to work for scientists but it hasn't gone as well Churches who are condemned in whole for the sins of a few.


If atheists want to replace the morality of religion, they are going to need to do a lot better than the scientific method. It is as susceptible to being wielded as an evil and open to corruption as religion has ever been.


Fr. Tim

`Village atheist' takes aim at Catholic school - David Quinn | The Irish Catholic - Ireland's biggest and best-selling Catholic newspaper since 1888

`Village atheist' takes aim at Catholic school - David Quinn | The Irish Catholic - Ireland's biggest and best-selling Catholic newspaper since 1888

NASA finding lots of planets outside solar system - CTV News

NASA finding lots of planets outside solar system - CTV News

The Real Presence

Michael Brandon (Freedom Through Truth) shares some wonderful insights and reflections on the Catholic belief in the real presence of Christ in the Eucharist.

Freedom Through Truth: The Real Presence

An excellent compendium of recent news stories coming out of Eygpt

Morning Must Reads: Mess - Swampland - TIME.com

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