Thursday 2nd October 2014

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Christmas: Peace Or Passivity?

December 19, 2013 Frontpage Comments Off

By DONALD DeMARCO Peace, although universally desirable, remains intellectually problematic. I recall inviting a group of 25 or so university students to give me a working definition of peace. Despite their sincere and studied attempts, they could not offer me a single image of peace that was positive. Peace, for them, was the absence of war, strife, conflict, problems, interruptions, frustrations, and so on. Peace, according to their provisional definitions, was indistinguishable from anesthesia. It was a synonym for Requiescat in pace. Christmas is about peace in its positivity. Mary is the Queen of Peace. Her Child is a bearer of peace. At Christmastime, our hearts should be filled with peace. We may begin our understanding of the positive quality…Continue Reading

The Story Of The Star Of Bethlehem

December 18, 2013 Frontpage Comments Off

By DONAL ANTHONY FOLEY Around this time of year, articles and stories appear in the media on the subject of the Star of Bethlehem. Quite often they focus on the astronomical state of the heavens at the time of Christ’s birth and try to show that some natural phenomenon can be held to be responsible for the appearance of the star — a comet, a supernova, or a conjunction of stars or planets. If we examine the biblical text, however, it becomes clear that it isn’t quite so easy to categorize the Star in this way, and that the truth may well turn out to be far more intriguing. The references to the Star are found in St. Matthew’s Gospel,…Continue Reading

In The Beginning . . .

December 17, 2013 Frontpage Comments Off

By GEORGE A. KENDALL When we think about the beginnings of things, something those of us with philosophical predilections tend to spend a lot of time doing, a sense of deep mystery comes over us. That is especially the case when it is our own personal beginnings that we contemplate as we reflect on our memories of early childhood, something that we become more and more prone to in old age — paradoxically, as the end gets closer, so does the beginning. That kind of reflection can easily degenerate into an exercise in self-absorption, a kind of navel-gazing. Yet, done rightly, it can also lead to real insight into who we are and what our relationship is to the reality…Continue Reading

The People In Charge Matter

December 16, 2013 Frontpage Comments Off

By JAMES K. FITZPATRICK Over the past few months the debate among correspondents to First Teachers over the federally mandated guidelines known as Common Core has centered on the language and specific provisions of the program: on, for example, whether Common Core takes too much power away from local school boards and whether its guidelines promote a secular humanism hostile to traditional values. These things are important, to be sure. But it is also important to know who will be in charge of implementing Common Core. Programs that sound unobjectionable, even high-minded, on paper can take on a different character if they are under the control of individuals with an animus against traditional values.

Culture Of Life 101 . . . “The Abortion Situation In Europe”

December 15, 2013 Frontpage Comments Off

By BRIAN CLOWES (Editor’s Note: Brian Clowes has been director of research and training at Human Life International since 1995. For an electronic copy of chapter 18 of The Facts of Life, “The Worldwide Abortion Situation,” e-mail him at bclowes@hli.org.) +    +    + Many American pro-lifers wonder what the long-term impacts of abortion will be on the United States. We have been making significant progress against the Culture of Death over the past decade, but if our progress is reversed and abortion strengthens its hold on our society, what will happen to our country? With Obamacare’s funding of abortions and the related economic problems, what will happen if the abortion rate rises even higher, and we add millions more to…Continue Reading

Bishop Conley… Counters Dismissals Of Pope’s Economic Warnings

December 14, 2013 Frontpage Comments Off

LINCOLN, Neb. (CNA/EWTN News) — Critics of Pope Francis’ warnings about capitalism are reducing him to a “cartoonish socialist” to diminish the seriousness of his message, Bishop James Conley of Lincoln, Neb., said. “The Pope affirmed that markets must be understood and administered in justice, with due regard for the sovereignty and solidarity of families and human dignity,” Bishop Conley stated in a December 2 column for the Republican-leaning web site National Review Online. He added that the Pope’s November 26 document Evangelii Gaudium did not reject capitalism, but instead rejected “idolatry of any economic system” and “called Catholics to human solidarity in the context of public policy.”

Belgium Senate Committees… Pass Bill To Allow Child Euthanasia

December 13, 2013 Frontpage Comments Off

By HILARY WHITE BRUSSELS (LifeSiteNews) — Two Senate committees in Belgium have voted to approve a measure that will allow children to be euthanized under the country’s current law. The social affairs and justice committees voted for the measure, 13 to 4, at the end of November in a joint meeting. They have now sent the bill, which will also extend the provisions for euthanasia to dementia and Alzheimer’s patients, to the Senate for further debate. Currently the law only allows euthanasia requests for those over 18 and of sound mind, although it is acknowledged that these restrictions are widely ignored. Support for the lowering of the age limit, which has received criticism from Church leaders, is strong among Belgian…Continue Reading

With More Threats Afoot . . . Compassion Gets Confused With Pushing Border Politics

December 12, 2013 Frontpage Comments Off

By DEXTER DUGGAN PHOENIX — Jesus Himself was a refugee, Phoenix Bishop Thomas Olmsted told a news conference here as some Arizona religious officials continued to push for quick congressional approval of “comprehensive immigration reform.” Olmsted linked this push with Christian duties of basic charity in the Bible, according to an article posted November 26 at the Phoenix diocesan web site, “Arizona bishops lend voices to call for immigration reform.” Phoenix’s auxiliary bishop, Eduardo Nevares, was quoted in support of the “reform,” which includes a “path to citizenship”: “We have to keep fanning the flame to keep the interest alive.” With Christmas around the corner, a person might recall the story of the Holy Family’s flight into Egypt to escape…Continue Reading

Common Core: The Debate Goes On

December 11, 2013 Frontpage Comments Off

By JAMES K. FITZPATRICK It is not surprising that the debate over the federal government’s attempt to set standards for the nation’s schools through the Common Core curriculum grows more intense with each passing day. Most Americans had never heard of Common Core until a few months ago. It seems the more people learn about it, the more alarmed they become. M.S.D. of Wyoming writes to join those who protest the manner in which Common Core unnecessarily and unwisely increases the federal government’s control over our local schools: “The fundamental problem with Common Core is that the federal government has neither the power nor the authority nor the competence to meddle at all in education. None.”

The Spiritual “Knockout Game”

December 10, 2013 Frontpage Comments Off

By REY FLORES I imagine most of you have already heard all about the infamous “knockout game” craze that’s sweeping the nation. Those crazy kids; what’ll they come up with next? I am also not sure how many of you may feel the same way I do, but by the time I get to bed at night, I feel as if I have been severely knocked over the head with bad news, worse news, and even more worse news on top of that. Thank God for bedtime prayers, because how else would we make it in this crazy, sinful, and mixed-up world? It seems like we’re all in for a daily “spiritual knockout” the way things are going. This past…Continue Reading