Monday, December 25, 2006

Pope Benedict XVI: On the Dignity of Children

from breitbart news:

Pope Benedict XVI appealed for the respect of the "dignity of children" during Midnight Mass attended by thousands at St Peter's Basilica and watched by millions more on television.

With the birth of Jesus in a stable in Bethlehem, God "teaches us respect for children," the pope said in his homily broadcast live on 73 television stations in 47 countries.

"The child of Bethlehem directs our gaze towards all children who suffer and are abused in the world, the born and the unborn," said the spiritual leader of the world's 1.1 billion Catholics.

Speaking in Italian, he pointed to "children who are placed as soldiers in a violent world ... children who have to beg ... children who suffer deprivation and hunger ... children who are unloved."

He said: "In all of these it is the child of Bethlehem who is crying out to us. ... Let us pray this night that the brightness of God's love may enfold all these children. Let us ask God to help us do our part so that the dignity of children may be respected."

The Pope is recentering Christmas on the Christ-Child, which is the correct thing to do. The silliness that we see around us is from the loss of focus on the Christ.

Reuters had some accurate analysis as to what may be on Pope's mind:

The Catholic Church, particularly in the United States, is still reeling from a 2002 child sexual abuse scandal involving priests. This month a papal preacher suggested the Pope should call a day of penitence to seek forgiveness from God.

Merry Christmas and Peace to Men of Good Will

In Memoriam: Patricia Elizabeth Connors (1946-2006)

My mother passed away on Friday, December 22 at 2:30 pm at Mount Auburn Hospital in Cambridge, Massachusetts. She was born Patricia Elizabeth Connors on September 16, 1946 in St Elizabeth Hospital in Brighton (Boston), MA to Constance Ambrose and Robert John Connors of Watertown, MA, St Luke's Parish. She lived virtually her whole life in St Luke's Parish area of Watertown and Belmont. She is survived by her ex-husband Thomas Gerard Coolberth, two sisters Maureen (Connors) Pires of Stoneham, MA and Debra (Connors) Corsetti of Weare, NH, her brother Robert Connors of Florida. She had five children: MSGT Philip S. Coolberth USAF of Boise, ID, Thomas S. Coolberth of Leominster, MA, Kimberly Ann (Coolberth) Fuller of Everett, WA, Joseph Albert Pires of Watertown, MA and Jennifer Maria Pires of Waltham, MA. Her six grandchildren are Candace, Carley, Colin, Stephanie, Vincent and Dominic.

Wednesday, December 20, 2006

No Santa, Says Brit Teacher, Parents Outraged

A primary school has been accused of spoiling Christmas for pupils after a lesson telling them that Santa Claus does not exist.

Children as young as nine were told that only 'small children believe in Father Christmas'.

And yesterday their parents criticised teachers for taking the 'magic' out of the festive period.

The blunder came after the Year 5 pupils were given seasonal worksheets containing various festive classroom exercises.

One began by informing the children that 'many small children believe in Father Christmas'.

It then went on to explain that thousands of letters sent by these children to Santa every year are actually answered by the Post Office.

The youngsters were then asked to write a pretend letter from the Post Office to a child explaining why their requests for presents had been refused.

I'll admit that I saw red for a second when the headline caught my eye but 9 years old is a bit long in the tooth for Santa Claus myths. I'd say 6 or 7 is about the right time for a factoid about the Roman Catholic Bishop of Myra, Turkey (see previous post). But that is the problem with the myths ... they explode and the children are left with nothing. Better to give the truth (Jesus, the Nativity, Virgin Birth, Bishop of Myra) and give it to them early, the teachers are militant deconstructionists and they'll have their claws into your kids starting at age 5 in most cases.

I'll also admit that I am not pushing Santa on my little guys. This was met with protests by a Catholic friend but this person could not answer one reason why on religious grounds why Roman Catholics should push the Santa thing. This person also admitted that they dared not relate the story of the Nativity to their child. Weird. Filipino wifey looks at all this stuff as weird, also. I guess fat white guys dashing through the snow does not go over so well in sub-tropical Philippines.

The parents in the story and my Catholic friend, kept going on and on about the "magic" of Christmas. Sorry, I don't buy it and neither does wifey. Maybe we knew too many threadbare Christmas morns.

Here's my beef. What's up with the assignment? Why assign the kids a task to write other kids about why there is no Santa or about why they get no gifts? What are the being assigned the task of being a Scrooge? Seems a little militant to me.

Anyway, I'm officially ceding Santa Claus to the wicans, pagans and athiests ... call him Kwanzaa Claus for all I care. I'll stick with Jesus, the Virgin, the Nativity and the good ole Bishop of Myra, Turkey.

Tuesday, December 19, 2006

Libya To Execute Bulgarian Nurses

A dear Bulgarian friend brough this story to my attention and then my eye caught the headline on the Reuters website:

By Lamine Ghanmi

TRIPOLI (Reuters) - A Libyan court sentenced five Bulgarian nurses and a Palestinian doctor to death on Tuesday for deliberately infecting hundreds of children with the HIV virus that causes AIDS.

"Justice has been done. We are happy," said Subhy Abdullah, who daughter Mona, 7, died from AIDS contracted at the hospital in the town of Benghazi where the medics worked.

"They should be executed quickly," Abdullah told Reuters after the guilty verdicts were announced by judge Mahmoud Haouissa at the end of a seven-month retrial of the case.

The charges

The six were accused of infecting 426 Libyan children, more than 50 of whom have since died, with HIV at a hospital in Benghazi in the late 1990s. The prosecution had demanded the death penalty. The medics deny the charge.

The truth

Luc Montagnier, a French doctor who first detected the HIV virus, has said the infections were first present in the Benghazi hospital in 1997, a year before the medics arrived.

Moral to this story

Stay out of Islamic countries especially if you intend to practice evil Western ways (e.g. rational thought, modern medicine, humanitarian activity.)

French Socialist Gets Cozy with Terrorists., Later Bewildered by Cold Shoulder

From Reuters by By Kerstin Gehmlich

PARIS (Reuters) - One is French. One is American. [Both are socialists] Both may become the first female presidents of their country. But will Segolene Royal and Hillary Rodham Clinton support or snub each other in their battle?

Speculation about the power women's relationship rose in France after a newspaper said Royal had postponed a U.S. trip planned for this month because Clinton did not want to see her.

Socialist regional leader Royal, 53, a relative political newcomer with little foreign policy experience, has made little secret of the fact she would like to meet Clinton to bolster her international credentials.

But after gaffes by Royal on a trip to the Middle East, the Democratic Senator from New York, who is believed to be eyeing a White House bid in 2008, was less than enthusiastic about being seen together with the French candidate, Le Parisien daily said at the weekend, quoting a Clinton adviser.......

and buried at the bottom the Reuters reporter reveals Royal's gaffe

On her recent Middle East visit, Royal waited a day before condemning comments made in front of her by Hezbollah politician Ali Ammar who described past Israeli occupations of the country as Nazism. She said she had not heard his words.

She was also forced to clarify her position after she seemed to agree with Ammar's assessment of U.S. foreign policy as "unlimited insanity".

I'm sure Mrs. Royal is confused as Hilary Rotten Clinton has famous for constant make out sessions with the wife of terrorist Yassir Arafat, but this is an election year honey! There's no time for romance just now.

Besides, American socialists save their diatribes against their own country for their overseas trips.

Monday, December 11, 2006

Santa Claus: More Roman Catholic stuff


St. Nicholas by Susan Seals
Used by permission
The true story of Santa Claus begins with Nicholas, who was born during the third century in the village of Patara. At the time the area was Greek and is now on the southern coast of Turkey. His wealthy parents, who raised him to be a devout Christian, died in an epidemic while Nicholas was still young. Obeying Jesus' words to "sell what you own and give the money to the poor," Nicholas used his whole inheritance to assist the needy, the sick, and the suffering. He dedicated his life to serving God and was made Bishop of Myra while still a young man. Bishop Nicholas became known throughout the land for his generosity to the those in need, his love for children, and his concern for sailors and ships.

Elisabeth Jvanovsky illustration
Illus. by Elisabeth Jvanovsky from Saint Nicholas by Henri Gheon, Sheed and Ward, 1936

Under the Roman Emperor Diocletian, who ruthlessly persecuted Christians, Bishop Nicholas suffered for his faith, was exiled and imprisoned. The prisons were so full of bishops, priests, and deacons, there was no room for the real criminals—murderers, thieves and robbers. After his release, Nicholas attended the Council of Nicaea in AD 325. He died December 6, AD 343 in Myra and was buried in his cathedral church, where a unique relic, called manna, formed in his grave. This liquid substance, said to have healing powers, fostered the growth of devotion to Nicholas. The anniversary of his death became a day of celebration, St. Nicholas Day.

Through the centuries many stories and legends have been told of St. Nicholas' life and deeds. These accounts help us understand his extraordinary character and why he is so beloved and revered as protector and helper of those in need. more.

The need for this post stems from a fun conversation at work. It was posited by someone that "Nicholas was a German guy who gave away presents in Germany, somewhere." Not quite, young man but being misinformed about the Roman Catholic origin of just about everything is easy to do.

In a way, a discerning Protestant or pagan should banish the though of teaching their children about a very good Roman Catholic Bishop..... maybe they need to come up with their own guy for the "Holidays", maybe Kwanzaa Claus modeled somewhat on Jesse Jackson and Malcolm X.

The non-believers need a new word, also, as holiday comes from "Holy Day." So when they go around insisting in their pedantic way to have a "Happy Holy Day", they scarcely know what they are saying. I'm happy to have one though

On the Roman Catholic Origin of Just About Everything

Read it (and weep if you are a Protestant, athiest, Jew, pagan or anything else.)

From an AMAZON reviwer:

In two hundred pages, Foley (who teaches at Baylor University) covers the Catholic origins of everyday objects, words, practices, and institutions in our life, in entertainment, manners, food, music, sports, flowers, science, technology, law, and language. The title of the book is slightly misleading, since the purpose is not to explain Catholic practices but rather to show how we all practice Catholicism without really knowing it.

Remember the invisible ink you used when you were a kid? You would write and not see it until you held it up to the light or covered it with a special liquid. This book is that light, that liquid, that brings into sharp relief what was there and yet could not see. These are the ghosts that surround us on all sides, and they are here to stay and dwell among us so long as we are civilized.

And they are here to stay and dwell among us so long as we are civilized, indeed.

Wednesday, December 06, 2006

Two Seemingly Unconnected Stories, When Combined Form a Thread

Here's, the thread: Israel sucked us into a proxy war with Iraq at the instigation of Jewish moles in the government and at the helm of the Neo-Conservative movement in America. I always discounted this as a crack-pot idea and as rank anti-Semitism. But here's two stories, taken together what do they mean?

Democrats negotiate with Hamas (Hamas is terrorist organization bent on the complete elimination of Israel). From the Jerusalem Post via Drudge:

Hamas officials have managed to smuggle more than $66 million in cash through the Rafah border crossing in the past eight months, a member of the Hamas-led Palestinian Authority government said Wednesday.

Meanwhile, sources close to the PA government claimed that Hamas representatives recently held talks with officials from the US Democratic Party at an undisclosed location.

Meanwhile, James Baker seeks to block Israel from a regional summit. from via Drudge Report:

The White House has been examining a proposal by James Baker to launch a Middle East peace effort without Israel.

The peace effort would begin with a U.S.-organized conference, dubbed Madrid-2, and contain such U.S. adversaries as Iran and Syria. Officials said Madrid-2 would be promoted as a forum to discuss Iraq's future, but actually focus on Arab demands for Israel to withdraw from territories captured in the 1967 war. They said Israel would not be invited to the conference.

Summary .... Israel your goose is cooked, you're on your own. Is Drudge a Jew? Is he fear mongering? I attended a great conferences two years ago sponsored by the St Benedict Center, Richmond, NH. At the conference, a speaker named Robert Hickson was warning that we were "getting sucked into a paradigm." He was insinuating that we were getting sucked into this mess in Iraq by Israel and their proxies that permete Washington D.C. power-base. Maybe Hickson was right and maybe this is the end of all that.