27 September 2007

Catholic League Protests Miller Brewing Ad

Thanks to Bill Donohue at the Catholic League for continuing the good fight. On Thursday, September 27, Catholic League president Bill Donohue will apear on Fox News Channel's "Fox & Friends" at 7:30am ET to discuss Miller Brewing sponsoring the Folsom Street Fair.

Yesterday, we contacted the Miller Brewing Company protesting an obscene ad for an event it is sponsoring in San Francisco on September 30; the ad for the Folsom Street Fair depicts a sadomasochistic scene where sex toys are placed on the table of the Last Supper, flanked by half-naked homosexuals. Miller now says, “We understand some individuals may find the imagery offensive and we have asked the organizers to remove our logo from the poster effective immediately.”
Catholic League president Bill Donohue responded this way:
“Miller’s response (some might find mocking the Last Supper offensive?), while limp, would normally have been enough to get us off their back. But we have subsequently learned that some of the monies being raised at this event are being funneled to a notoriously anti-Catholic and misogynist group, the Sisters of Perpetual Indulgence (click here). After this development was brought to the attention of Miller, spokesman Julian Green responded that Miller was standing by the event. That’s fine with us. We just hope he knows that it really is ‘Miller Time.’
“Tomorrow night, the group that Miller is funding via the festival will hold ‘The Last Supper With the Sisters,’ an event that will ridicule this sacred moment in history. Indeed, on its website it describes this sick stunt as the best way ‘to prepare your mortal flesh for the kinkiest weekend on Earth.’ (Its emphasis.) On Friday, the Sisters will bring in porn stars to entertain the leather crowd. The big day is on Sunday, or what the Sisters call ‘the biggest and baddest fetish fair fundraiser in the world!’ Pictures from last year’s event (click here) show naked men and women, simulated sex, a huge phallic glass sculpture, etc.
“Apparently, Miller has decided to side with a small band of depraved and bigoted gays against Catholics (25 percent of the population) and Protestants (60 percent of the nation). This is an ethical and marketing fiasco of colossal proportions. I will announce within the next day exactly what our game plan will be. The collision course that Miller wants with Christians is now on.”

Please pray for these poor souls.

26 September 2007

Men's Apologetics - Argument of the Month Club

The Minneapolis & St. Paul (MN) Argument of the Month Club is having dinner and a debate with Dr. Arthur Hippler on the topic, "Is religious liberty the road to secularism?" The club holds it's meetings at the Church of St. Augustine in South Saint Paul and is a great opportunity for men to get together for a fine dinner and engaging conversation. See their web site for further details on this talk as well as future speakers Archbishop Nienstedt from St. Paul/Mpls and Dale Alquist who is the host of an EWTN series on G.K. Chesterton. http://www.aotmclub.com/

25 September 2007

Archbishop Chaput on Renewing the Church

This excerpt is from an article in First Things By Archbishop Chaput of Denver to a Legatus conference. While most of us are not able to become members of this organization, the message is certainly to all of us. The full article is here. http://www.firstthings.com/onthesquare/?p=856

"So what are you going to do? How are we going to convert this world? I want to suggest an answer from history. Did you ever wonder how the early Church did it? I mean, how did a handful of very ordinary men, disciples of an obscure man executed as a criminal, wind up changing the world—conquering an empire and founding a whole new civilization on the cornerstone of that executed man’s life and teachings? And they did it in just a few centuries, without armies, and usually in face of discrimination and persecution. Never before had a religion taught that God loved people personally and that God’s love began before the person was even born. Abortion and birth control were rampant in the Roman Empire. Christians rejected both of them from the beginning. Athenagoras, a Christian layman, explained why in an open letter he addressed to Emperor Marcus Aurelius. He said: “For we regard the very fetus in the womb as a created being, and therefore an object of God’s care.”
Before Christianity came on the scene, no religion had ever taught that God could be found in our neighbor. The world largely ignored the poor, the hungry, the stranger, and the imprisoned. And it still does. And yet Jesus said that we find God in our love for these least brethren of ours.
Christian love is not weak or anesthetic. It’s an act of the will. It takes guts. It’s a deliberate submission of our selfishness to the needs of others. There’s nothing “unmanly” about it, and there’s nothing—and I mean nothing—more demanding and rewarding in the world. The heart of medieval knighthood and chivalry was the choice of a fighting man to put himself at the service of others—honoring his lord, respecting the dignity of women, protecting the weak, and defending the faith even at the cost of his own life.
That’s your vocation. That’s what being a Christian man means. We still have those qualities in our hearts. We are not powerless in the face of today’s unbelieving civilization. We can turn this world upside down if only we’re willing to love—the kind of Christian love that is vastly more powerful than just a sugary feeling; the kind of love that converts men into something entirely new; the kind of love that bears fruit in a man’s zeal, courage, justice, mercy, and apostolic action.
So I leave you with this: Be men who love well. Be the Catholic men God intended you to be. Be men of courage and fidelity to your God, your wives, your families, and your Church. Put your belief into practice. Do everything for the glory of God, even the little things you have to do each day. Love those who don’t love you. Love—expecting nothing in return. Love—and those you love will find Jesus, too. Love—and through your actions, God will change this world.
Charles J. Chaput, O.F.M. Cap., is the archbishop of Denver. This talk was given in September at an Indianapolis men’s conference for Legatus."

Reclaiming Fatherhood

On November 28 and 29, there is a conference in San Francisco titled Reclaiming Fatherhood and its focus is on helping men dealing with abortion.

17 September 2007

Bishop Aquila of Fargo calls for "40 days for Life"

In a letter posted on the Diocese of Fargo Web site, Most Rev. Samuel J. Aquila, Bishop of Fargo, encourages the faithful to participate in the national, ecumenical “40 Days for Life” campaign. “Make a plan for prayer and fasting,” Bishop Aquila writes. “Then, if you are not homebound or physically impaired, schedule an hour or more of prayerful vigil. I have asked each priest of the diocese to do the same and to challenge you to follow his example.”The bishop has already scheduled a personal time of prayer. “I will be at the abortion facility on Sept. 28 at 10:30 a.m.” he writes.According to their website, the "40 Days for Life" campaign is planning its next forty days from September 26 through November 4. They provide a simple three step plan of 1) Prayer and Fasting 2)Peaceful Vigil and 3)Community Outreach.

Saginaw Seminarians: And the Award Goes to...

13 September 2007

Faithful laymen to renew the faith

While meeting with a group of Cardinals, Pope St. Pius X asked them, "what is the thing we most need, today, to save society?" One replied, "build more Catholic schools," another, "more churches," still "No." "Speed up the recruiting process for priests answered a third." "No, no," said the Pope. "The MOST necessary thing of all, at this time, is for every parish to possess a group of laymen who will be at the same time virtuous, enlightened, resolute, and truly apostolic." He saw no hope for the salvation of the world unless the clergy could use their zeal to form faithful Christians full of apostolic ardor, preaching by word and example, but especially by example.

12 September 2007

Pope Benedict in Austria

Pope Benedict XVI ended a three-day pilgrimage to Austria on Sunday, telling Catholics to keep Sundays holy and to dedicate themselves to volunteer work to spread "the Christian image of God." With those themes, Benedict homed in on two aspects of Christian life that Austrians are particularly adept at. Despite disaffection with the once-powerful church here, Austria remains one of Europe's last countries to ban most commercial activity on Sundays, and it is a leading force in social charity work.After two rain-drenched days, the sun came out Sunday as the pope finished holy Mass at Vienna's landmark St. Stephen's Cathedral, a Gothic and Baroque church that survived heavy damage in World War II bombing.Its distinctive roof in blue, green and gold geometric-patterned tiles dominates the skyline of Old Vienna.The Mass was filled with the music of Haydn performed by orchestra and chorus and echoing out of doors in the plaza and cobblestone streets, where thousands of faithful gathered and chanted the pope's name."Without the Lord and without the day that belongs to him, life does not flourish," the pope said in his homily, seated under the cathedral's gilded 17th century high altar.Western societies, he complained, have turned Sundays into part of a weekend of leisure. Leisure is necessary, he said, "especially amid the mad rush of the modern world."But without an "encounter" with God, he said, Sunday "becomes wasted time that neither strengthens nor builds us up." Austrian business groups have been pressuring the government to allow them to open shops on Sundays, a move the Roman Catholic Church has been fighting.Taking advantage of the improved weather, the pope then walked several yards from the church to Stephansplatz, where he stood to deliver the Angelus greeting.A strong gust of wind suddenly whipped his white skullcap from his head, sending aides scurrying after it. Another gust lifted and wrapped his long red cape around his head, briefly veiling his face."The wind has spoken for itself," the pope said to laughter.Organizers had expected as many as 40,000 people to crowd into central Vienna to see the pope, but police said fewer than 20,000 were there, filling the area around the cathedral but only the beginning of the famous Graben walkway.Several middle-aged men and women stood to one side of the Graben with hand-painted signs calling for reforms in the church: "Brother pope, learn from our sister churches. Women to the priesthood!""This is a very meaningful visit," the group's leader, Hans Peter Hurka. "However, more discussions instead of speeches were needed."Later Sunday, the pope toured Heiligenkreuz Abbey, a 12th century Cistercian monastery on the outskirts of Vienna that includes a theological academy.There, he spoke to monks, then he returned to Vienna to hear a symphony recital and to address a range of church and lay volunteer organizations active in Austria."Volunteers like yourselves," he said, "are not 'stopgaps' in the social fabric, but people who truly contribute to giving our society a humane and Christian face. . . . Volunteer work is really about the heart of the Christian image of God and man: love of God and love of neighbors." The pope's mission in Austria was to bolster a church troubled by scandal and the same rampant desertions experienced throughout an increasingly secular Europe.It is not clear he achieved that, given the smaller, subdued crowds he attracted and commentaries offering mixed reviews."Benedict left. The event is over," noted commentator Alfred Payrleitner in the daily Kurier. "The account of his visit is also a portrait of our modern times -- a mixture of popular culture, imperturbable religiousness, ready reflexes and a lot of doubt."Many Austrian Catholics are ambivalent about their religious identities. There is a basic cultural Catholicism for many, without the piety, and it is not at all clear that Benedict's message will penetrate."We are what you might call Catholic atheists," Paul Zulehner, dean of theology at Vienna University, said in an interview."Austrians can combine being culturally Catholic without being religious."They are saying, yes, Christianity is important to the European identity and should be learned about in schools, but they don't go to church very often and they are not fervent believers."

10 September 2007

Is Chivalry Dead? Should it Be?

This is a link to a talk given by James Bowman, Resident Scholar of the Ethics and Public Policy Center and author of the new book, Honor: A History

08 September 2007

A proper understanding of the Consecration.

Jean de Joinville, who was a close friend of King St. Louis, wrote that while on Crusade he took ill with a severe cold and fever and was confined to bed. His priest who was sick with typhus like much of the camp, came to his tent to say Mass. "It came about that he fainted when he reached the Consecration. When I saw that he was about to fall, I jumped out of bed, just as I was in my shirt, and, without putting on my shoes, I took him in my arms and told him to make the Sacrament slowly and softly and said that I would not leave him until he had quite finished. He came back to his senses and made his Sacrament. And he completed the singing of the Mass and afterward never sang it again." This sublime act illustrates that to the 13th century knight the Mass was the central element of his life while in our own time our first thought would be to call an ambulance. Is it any wonder that today at Mass I was distracted by two teenagers talking and looking at messages on their cell phone, even during the Consecration.

07 September 2007

What am I doing?

I started this blog to hopefully reawaken in men the ideal of Christian chivalry. Not the modern romantic notion of chivalry as something akin to King Arthur and his Knights of the Round Table but the timeless idea as expressed by Kenelm Digby, "Chivalry is only a name for that general spirit or state of mind which disposes men to heroic and generous actions and keeps them conversant with all that is beautiful and sublime in the intellectual and moral world."


This blog and the opinions are all my own and in no way imply the endorsement from any organization. Nor does a recommendation of another blog or web site imply my agreement or endorsement of everything found on their site.