Wednesday, May 31, 2006

Joke of the Day

One morning a man comes into the church on crutches. He stops in front of the holy water and splashes some of it on both of his legs, then throws away his crutches. An altar boy witnessed the scene and runs into the rectory to tell the priest what he'd just seen.

Without batting an eye, the priest says, "Son, you've just witnessed a miracle. Tell me, where is this man?"

"Flat on his ass, Father, over by the holy water."

Summer of Tears: 77 Day Novena to Close Tillers Late-Term Abortion Mill

May 31st - Visitation of Mary to August 15th - Assumption of Mary

38 days of Petition May 31st to July 7th
39 days of Thanksgiving July 8th to August 15th

1. Daily Pray Seven Sorrows of Mary on Regular Rosary Beads.
Meditate on each mystery, as you pray 10 Hail Mary's on each decade.

First Sorrow: Simeon's Prophesy "Thy own soul shall pierce thy heart." Second: Mary and Joseph fled into Eygpt with Jesus.
Third: Jesus lost in the temple - Mary and Joseph suffered the loss of Jesus.
Fourth: Mary meets Jesus on the way of the Cross.
Fifth: Mary stood beneath the Cross and watched her Son suffer and die.
Sixth Sorrow: Mary cradles Her dead Son in Her arms.
Seventh Sorrow: Mary watched Her dead Son placed in the tomb.
Finish the 7 Sorrows Rosary as normal with the Hail Holy Queen, etc.

2. Daily Consecrate Tiller's Abortion Mill to the Immaculate Heart of Mary and the Sacred Heart of Jesus. Use these or similar words: "I consecrate Tiller's abortion mill to the Immaculate Heart of Mary and the Sacred Heart of Jesus."

3. Daily Accept Sufferings during the Novena to Close Tiller's abortion mill. "O Lord, I accept all sufferings during this novena, to close Tiller's abortion mill."

Promise: If during the Novena, Tiller's abortion mill is closed, I will do the best I can to create a memorial to the unborn on the sight, and help establish a procession to Our Lady of Guadalupe every year on the date of its closure.

This novena has already closed one abortion mill in Wichita, KS, but let's not stop there. Please join in to close the internationally famous Tiller's late-term abortion mill -- the place where people from all over the world come to slaughter the innocent -- the place where both women and children are nurdered.

Jill Stanek: "Pro-abort PBA paradox"

When exactly is a pregnancy terminated?

Abortion proponents attempting to answer that question should run into a problem. By trying to protect one flank, they've exposed another.

To be consistent, the abortion industry's definition of when a pregnancy begins should agree with its definition of when it ends. But the two don't jibe.

For over 30 years, abortion proponents have maintained pregnancy begins when an embryo implants in the uterus and ends after a completed delivery.

According to pro-aborts, a fallopian tube carrying a newly created embryo has no bearing on pregnancy. It merely provides the portal of entry into the uterus.

How then can they claim the portal of exit, the birth canal, has anything to do with pregnancy either? Once the baby is outside the uterus, they should consider the pregnancy over, terminated.

Read Jill's column today, "Pro-abort PBA paradox," on

Priest Alert!

I woke up this morning in a near panic when I realized what day this was. This evening one of our favorite priests (who gives wonderful pro-life homilies) is coming over to bless our new home and it is still in a sad and chaotic post - holiday condition so I am scrambling around attempting to make it look presentable, while nursing a sick cat who has an appointment at the veternarian's office this afternoon, and attempting to locate a misplaced cell phone to schedule other appointments. Who says you need kids to live the life of a desperate housewife? Thank God we're taking our priest friend out for dinner! By the way, I will get all the comments on the blog that I accidentally deleted while hurrying through them this morning. (Sorry, people, it's one of those days!) Mary, Queen of peace, pray for us!

Father Frank Pavone: The Bite of "Choice"

Via Fr. Frank Pavone National Director, Priests for Life:

In my current series of columns, I've been examining the fact that the price to be paid for doing abortions is life as an abortionist. It is, in many ways, its own punishment, and the examples we have given of how it destroys the personality are only the tip of the iceberg.

Another dimension of this truth is how the stigma of being an abortionist is causing the abortion industry to collapse for lack of personnel. Here we find a beautiful irony, because "choice" has come back to bite the abortion industry. They have discovered the hard truth that if women can choose to have abortions, so doctors can choose not to perform them. There is an amazing disparity in the medical community between the number of those who will identify themselves as "pro-choice," and the number of those who are willing to work in an abortion clinic. Abortionist Morris Wortman attested, "There is tremendous support in the medical community for a woman's right to choose, as long as she doesn't "choose me" to perform her abortion" (Medical Tribune, March 6, 1997).

This has created nothing less than a crisis for the abortion business, and has caused many in it to openly express their fears that the pro-life movement will end abortion without even having to make it illegal. Abortion is quickly becoming the legal procedure that no doctor wants to do and fewer and fewer women want to undergo. Don't take my word for it; read these quotes:

"When I look back on the [Roe v. Wade] decision, I thought these words had been written in granite. But I've learned it was not granite. It was more like sandstone. The immediate problem is, where will the doctors come from?" (Sarah Weddington, pro-abortion attorney who successfully argued Roe vs. Wade before the Supreme Court; Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, February 15, 1998).

"That's how the anti's are going to attrition, because fewer and fewer doctors will perform abortions" (Abortionist Herbert Hodes, Glamour, September 1991).

"Abortion opponents will achieve their goal without ever having to overturn Roe vs. Wade" (Kate Michelman, (former) Director, National Abortion Rights Action League, Dallas Morning News, October 4, 1997, commenting on the shortage of abortionists).

"We've seen a turn-off of physicians coming into this field" (Abortionist Ed Boaz, ABC World News Tonight, January 16, 1998).

"Having the right to abortion doesn't mean a [expletive] thing if you can't access it" (Barbara Ellis, abortion advocate, National Abortion Federation Annual meeting, San Francisco, March/April 1996).

So many pro-life activists have looked for visible results of their legislative and educational activity, and often don't find as much as they would like. Yet these quotes prove that the abortion industry feels the weight of our success. The goal in war is not to destroy one's enemy, but to destroy the enemy's capacity for waging war. By educating the public, especially medical students, about how ugly life as an abortionist is, we continue to rob them of what they need to keep abortion going.

Meditation and Prayer for The Feast of the Visitation of the Blessed Virgin Mary

"Blessed are you among women, and blessed is the fruit of your womb!

~ Luke 1:42

"My soul magnifies the Lord, and my spirit rejoices in God my Savior, for he has regarded the low estate of his handmaiden. For behold, henceforth all generations will call me blessed; for he who is mighty has done great things for me, and holy is his name. And his mercy is on those who fear him from generation to generation. He has shown strength with his arm, he has scattered the proud in the imagination of their hearts, he has put down the mighty from their thrones, and exalted those of low degree; he has filled the hungry with good things, and the rich he has sent empty away. He has helped his servant Israel, in remembrance of his mercy, as he spoke to our fathers, to Abraham and to his posterity for ever."

~ Luke 1:46-55

“Moved by charity, therefore, Mary goes to the house of her kinswoman.... While every word of Elizabeth’s is filled with meaning, her final words would seem to have a fundamental importance: ‘And blessed is she who believed that there would be a fulfillment of what had been spoken to her from the Lord’ (Luke 1:45). These words can be linked with the title ‘full of grace’ of the angel’s greeting. Both of these texts reveal an essential Mariological content, namely the truth about Mary, who has become really present in the mystery of Christ precisely because she ‘has believed.’ The fullness of grace announced by the angel means the gift of God himself. Mary’s faith, proclaimed by Elizabeth at the visitation, indicates how the Virgin of Nazareth responded to this gift”

~Pope John Paul II, The Mother of the Redeemer, 12


Wonderful Lord, on the Feast of Mary’s visit with Elizabeth, we are reminded that You are a God of joy and that You always fulfill Your promises. I ask the Blessed Mother to intercede for me when I feel discouraged, so that my soul may always magnify You, O Lord. May she remind me of Your promises and Your faithfulness when the difficulties of life cover me with darkness. Give me a spirit that rejoices in You, my Savior, for all the great things that you have done for me and will continue to bestow upon me, simply because You love me. Thank You for all You have done and will do! Blessed Mary, pray for me. Amen.

~From Daily Prayers with the Saints for the New Millenium by Terry Ann Modica

Tuesday, May 30, 2006

Conversing with Jesus - Updated

Today I am praying for...

healing for Alice, a junior in high school, who recently had an abortion and for blessings upon her friend who made this prayer request.

Dom's prayer request

Julie D.'s brother's job situation

The repose of the soul of Fr. Todd Reitmeyer and peace for his family.

The repose of the soul of Fr. McKenna and peace for his family.

all the Oblates from the Community of St. John (Jean) who will be making their lifetime Oblature this Pentecost Sunday.

Nan's 87-year old mother who had a heart attack and is suffering from other complications, as well.

healing for Cammie, who had a bad fall recently and is dealing with the side effects of a promising new medication for her chronic illness /pain. Lord, please give her strength, perseverance, and peace of mind.

the repose of the soul of the brother-in-law of the Anchoress who died recently, and for peace and healing for his family.

an end to abortion and a respect for all human life.

an unbiased Grand Jury Investigation for late-term abortionist George Tiller.

Jazzy's health.

another new apostolate for my husband and myself which begins in June.

New Study: Pregnancies Lower The Risk of Breast Cancer; Abortions Hurt

Heidelberg, Germany ( -- A new study by international researchers finds that a woman's risk of contracting breast cancer is lowered and the decrease is more substantial the more pregnancies a woman has had. As a result, women who have abortions could be losing missing an opportunity to lower their chance of contracting the disease. [More]

A Word of Thanks

I would like to thank all who have been praying for me during this training period for my new apostolate. Next week, I will "graduate" and then begin volunteering part-time as a crisis pregnancy counselor. I am looking forward to this as I believe that it is a new path that the Lord wants me to take.

God bless you abundantly!

Monday, May 29, 2006

Conversing with Jesus -- Updated

Today I am praying for...

Nan's 87-year old mother who had a heart attack yesterday and is suffering from other complications, as well.

healing for Cammie, who had a bad fall recently and is dealing with the side effects of a promising new medication for her chronic illness /pain. Lord, please give her strength, perseverance, and peace of mind.

the repose of the soul of the brother-in-law of the Anchoress who died recently, and for peace and healing for his family.

the repose of the souls of Father McKenna and Father Todd Reitmeyer.

the repose of the soul of Sean's father, who passed away and for healing and peace for the family.

an end to abortion and that all human beings may experience the right to life.

all our veterans, including my father, Marcel, (World War II) my brother, Michael (Viet Nam), and my sister, Susan, and especially for all those who have died in our nation's service: that they will be remembered and honored for their immeasurable sacrifice.

our military serving on active duty, for their safety and protection.

world peace and an end to all wars.

those experiencing stress, turmoil, or doubt: that they will see the good things of the Lord in their concrete circumstances.

the grace this week to come to know and believe the unconditional and everlasting love that God has for each of us.

all believers, that they will witness to the presence of Christ in our midst by living holy lives and by their acts of friendship and love towards others.

Please feel free to share your prayer intentions with me and I will be happy to pray with you and for you. Thank you for joining me in prayer for these special intentions. God bless you!

Best of the Blogosphere -- Updated

Check out Amy Proctor's post Memorial Day Commentary from an Army Wife .

Read "Birth Control Is Selfish" ... The Message Society Doesn't Want To Hear By Ruben Obregon at No Room for Contraception, Always room for love.

Babies with club feet aborted via The Black Kettle is a real eye-opener.

A Memorial Day Tribute with Prayers

Memorial Day, which began as Decoration Day for those who fought and died in the Civil War, has evolved into a day of remembrance for all the faithful departed.

As I participated in Holy Mass this morning, remembering all those who have served our country to defend our rights, some even unto death, I couldn't help but think of the many who have died in our country without even the basic right that we all are guaranteed by the founders in the Constitution -- the right to life; for without this right, we have no others.

Today, after Holy Mass, we prayed the rosary at the Knights of Columbus memorial for the unborn -- those who have been denied the right to life in the United States. We grieve their loss and we pray to them and for them for an end to the slaughter of innocents in our country today along with the many military men and women who, in imitation of Our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ, have sacrificed their lives for us.

A Prayer for Memorial Day

Remember, Lord, the fallen
Who died in fields of war,
In flaming clouds, in screaming crowds,
On streets that are no more,
That we today might waken
And greet this day in peace
With grateful prayer for those who bear
The storms that never cease.

Remember friends and strangers,
And those forgotten now,
Whose names are known to you alone,
Before whose love we bow
And ask that you surround them
With mercy’s endless light
That they may live, and we forgive
The foe they went to fight.

Remember, Lord, the living,
Who bear the pain of loss
- A death she died who stood beside
Her Son upon the cross.
Remember all your children
The dead and those who weep,
And make us one beneath the sun
Where love will never sleep.

Text: 7686D; Genevieve Glen, OSB; © 2005, Abbey of St. Walburga, Virginia Dale, CO. Published by OCP Publications.

Prayer for the Deceased
May the faithful departed, through the mercy of God, rest in peace. Amen.

Prayer for the Unborn

Father of Life and Love, we thank you today that you have called us to share in the life of the one human family. We thank you for all our brothers and sisters, and ask You to deepen the bonds of love among us.

We thank you especially for our youngest and smallest brothers and sisters, those in the womb. Today, Oh Lord, we remember them, while so many choose to ignore and forget them. We remember those who are living, and commend them to Your protection. We remember those who have died and commend them to Your mercy.

We pray, Father, that we who are the living stones of the Church, may likewise be witnesses to the dignity of life. Give us the grace to confront the evil of abortion and eliminate it. May we see the day when all people will remember abortion only as a thing of the past, and may praise You forever for the victory of life. We ask this through Christ Our Lord. Amen.

Saturday, May 27, 2006

St. Augustine of Canterbury, "Apostle of England"

St. Augustine was the agent of a greater man than himself, Pope St Gregory the Great. In Gregory's time, except for the Irish monks, missionary activity was unknown in the western Church, and it is Gregory's glory to have revived it.

Gregory decided to begin with a mission to the pagan English, for they had cut off the Christian Celts from the rest of Christendom. The time was favorable for a mission since the ruler of the whole of southern England, Ethelbert of Kent, had married a Christian wife and had received a Gaulish bishop at his court. Gregory himself wished to come to Britain, but his election as pope put an end to any such idea, and in 596 he decided to send an Italian monk following the comparatively new Rule of St Benedict.

Augustine set out with some companions, but when they reached southern Gaul a crisis occurred and Augustine was sent back to the pope for help. In reply the pope made Augustine their abbot and subjected the rest of the party to him in all things, and with this authority Augustine successfully reached England in 597, landing in Kent on the Isle of Thanet. Ethelbert and the men of Kent refused to accept Christianity at first, although an ancient British church dedicated to St Martin was restored for Augustine's use; but very shortly afterwards Ethelbert was baptized and, the pope having been consulted, a plan was prepared for the removal of the chief see from Canterbury to London and the establishment of another province at York. Events prevented either of these projects from being fulfilled, but the progress of the mission was continuous until Augustine's death, somewhere between 604 and 609.

The only defeat Augustine met with after he came to England was in his attempt to reconcile the Welsh Christians, to persuade them to adopt the Roman custom of reckoning the date of Easter, to correct certain minor irregularities of rite and to submit to his authority. Augustine met the leaders of the Welsh church in conference but he unfavorably impressed them by remaining seated when they came into his presence — it is likely that in this he unfavorably impressed St Bede too.

Augustine was neither the most heroic of missionaries, nor the most tactful, but he did a great work, and he was one of the very few men in Gaul or Italy who, at that time, was prepared to give up everything to preach the gospel in a far country.

St. Augustine has been called "Apostle of England" because of his missionary efforts.

Patron: England.

Symbols: Banner of the crucifixion; King Ethelbert rising out of a font (Bishop baptizing a king); fountain; cross fitchée pastoral staff and book; cope, mitre and pallium.


"God, in his promises to hear our prayers, is desirous to bestow Himself upon us; if you find anything better than Him, ask it; but if you ask anything beneath Him, you put an affront upon Him, and hurt yourself by preferring to Him a creature which He framed: Pray in the spirit and sentiment of love, in which the royal prophet said to Him, 'Thou, O Lord, are my portion.' Let others choose to themselves portions among creatures, for my part, You are my portion, You alone I have chosen for my whole inheritance."

Friday, May 26, 2006

Pope rallies Polish Catholics at beloved Marian shrine

(AP Photo/Diether Endlicher)

May. 26 ( - Speaking to 300,000 people at the famous Marian shrine of Jasna Gora on Friday, Pope Benedict XVI asked the Catholic faithful to proclaim the Gospel "in a mature manner-- not infantile and not aggressive-- to the world of culture and of work, to the world of the media and of politics, to the world of family life and the life of society."

The "wisdom of the Gospel," the Pope said, can be "read in the works of the great saints, and verified in our own lives." He went on to say that the quest for holiness is carried out in everyday life, by those who follow the example of the Virgin Mary and "allow our lives to be penetrated by the power of God Himself."


Catholic League president Bill Donohue commented today on an A&E documentary based on the work of Simon Cox, author of Illuminating Angels and Demons: The Unauthorized Guide to the Facts Behind the Fiction:

“Beginning the day before ‘The Da Vinci Code’ opened, A&E has thrice aired a documentary, ‘Illuminating Angels and Demons,’ that is replete with lies about the Catholic Church; the next airing is tomorrow.

“Drawing on the work of a Dan Brown wannabee, Simon Cox, the viewer learns that Peter was the first person to see the resurrected Jesus (he wasn’t—it was Mary Magdalene); the Vatican existed in the Fourth Century (it didn’t exist until a 1000 years later ); there are ‘hidden gospels’ buried in the Vatican that could be used to destroy the Church (the innocuous books can be found online); Jesus was a follower of John the Baptist (he’s got it backwards); the Church is anti-science (no institution has contributed more to science than the Catholic Church); the Church ‘would still kill Galileo today’ (no one—not even an albino monk—killed him); and so on.

“Had A&E accessed serious scholars, these embarrassing errors would have been avoided. Instead, they relied on amateurs and charlatans.

“While we can’t be exactly sure what’s possessing A&E these days, the signs are ominous. Better call on the services of an exorcist, just to be sure.”

Via Catholic League.

Conversing with Jesus

Today I am praying for...

an end to abortion and the closing of all abortion mills.

the success of apostolic work outside abortion clinics.

an unbiased Grand Jury Investigation of late-term abortionist George Tiller.

birthday blessings for Heidi.

a safe holiday weekend for all.

the repose of the soul of Gene, Sean's father, and for peace and healing for the family.

Donna, who is recovering from a heart bypass and laser eye surgery. She is having complications due to diabetes and has gone completely blind.

those Oblates who will be making their life-time Oblature on Pentecost Sunday.

Theophilus at Vivificat.

the conversion of Governor Kathleen Sebelius.

I am thanking the Lord for answered prayers, especially for...

more prayer warriors and sidewalk counselors at the abortion mill.

the passage of a bill that provides monies for adult stem cell research in Kansas.

the closing of Wichita abortion mill.

Please feel free to share your prayer intentions with me and I will be happy to pray with you and for you. Thank you for joining me in prayer for these special intentions.

God bless you!

Novena to the Holy Spirit

Novena to the Holy Spirit begins today.

Saint of the Day: St. Phillip Neri, Priest, "The Humorous Saint", "The Apostle of Rome"

St. Phillip Neri was born in Florence, Italy on July 22, 1515. He was one of four children of the notary Francesco Neri. His mother died when he was very young, but a very capable and competent stepmother filled her place. Although they were related to Italian nobility, the family was quite poor. Phillip was a cheerful and friendly boy, and was popular with all who knew him.

At eighteen, Phillip was sent to the town of San Germano, where he lived with a childless relative who had a business there to train as an apprentice and heir. Phillip had a strong aptitude for business. Soon after his arrival, Phillip began speaking of his conversion, which dramatically changed his life. He left his relative’s home and set out for Rome, as he had a vision that he had a mission to fulfill there. He left without money or a specific plan, trusting in God’s providence.

In Rome, he found shelter in the home of Galeotto Caccia who offered him an attic and a few basic necessities in exchange for tutoring his two sons. During his first two years there, he lived as a recluse, spending time in prayer and eating frugal meals. Then, for the next three years, he studied philosophy and theology at the Sapienza and St. Augustine’s Monastery, where he was a brilliant student. Quite suddenly, he stopped taking classes, sold all his books and gave his money to the poor.

Phillip now set about on a new venture – to evangelize the people of Rome. He started out in a very direct manner, making friends with people on street corners and in the public squares. His warm, friendly manner, his cheerfulness, and his wonderful sense of humor would catch the attention of passersby, and once caught, they found it difficult to escape. He had a magnetic personality and an appeal that drew others to him and held their interest. His usual question, “Well brothers, when shall we begin to do some good?” frequently brought a positive response. Without hesitation, he would take them with him to visit and care for the poor in the hospitals or to pray in the Seven Churches. His days were given up totally for others, but his nights were filled with solitude as he spent them either in a church porch or in the catacombs along the Appian Way.

During the Easter season of 1544, while praying in one of the grottos along the Appian Way, he received a vision of a globe of fire, which first entered his mouth and then his chest. He felt a dilation of the chest. He was filled with such strong divine love, that he fell to the ground, crying out in joy, “Enough, enough, Lord, I can bear no more!” When he stood up, he discovered a swelling over his heart, which gave him no pain.

In the year 1548, when Phillip had been carrying on his mission for ten years, he founded the Confraternity of the Most Holy Trinity – a group of laymen who met regularly for spiritual growth. He also popularized the devotion of the forty hours – exposing the Blessed Sacrament for forty hours, on three successive days, in honor of the forty hours Christ spent in the tomb.

Phillip had accomplished much by the time he was thirty-four, but his spiritual director felt he could be even more effective as a priest. On May 23, 1551, he was ordained. He carried on his mission mainly through the confessional. He started hearing confessions before dawn and continued for hours, while men of women of all ages and social rank flocked to him.

In his later years, Phillip became weak and suffered from many illnesses, each of which was cured through prayer.

On the feast of Corpus Christi, May 25, 1595, Phillip was in a radiantly happy mood. All day he had heard confessions and met with visitors. About midnight, he had a severe hemorrhage and the other priests were called to his bedside. They prayed over him and then he raised his hand in Benediction to bless them one last time. As he raised his hand, he passed to his eternal reward. Six years later, he was beatified and Pope Gregory XV canonized him in 1622.

He was known not only as “The Humorous Saint”, but also as the “Apostle of Rome.”

Quotes From St. Phillip Neri

“Bear the cross and do not make the cross bear you.”

“There is no purgatory in this world. Nothing but heaven or hell.”

“Sufferings are a kind of paradise to him who suffers them with patience, while they are a hell to him who has no patience.”

“The greatness of our love for God may be tested by the desire we have of suffering for His sake.”

"Cheerfulness strengthens the heart and makes us persevere in a good life. Therefore the servant of God ought always to be in good spirits."

~ Excerpted from Gold in the Furnace, Jean M. Heimann, copyright 2004.

Thursday, May 25, 2006

Governor Sebelius: Another Shameful "Catholic" Politician Who Vetoes Pro-life Legislation

Sebelius shames her Catholic faith by claiming to be “pro-life” in veto statement.

Topeka, KS – Kansas Lawmakers will attempt to override Gov. Kathleen Sebelius’ veto today of a measure that would compel abortion mills to report the reason for each abortion on viable babies past 22 weeks. It would also require abortionists to report the diagnosis for babies aborted due to fetal abnormality, such as Down syndrome.

Post-viability abortions are illegal in Kansas, with very narrow exceptions. The Kansas Attorney General, Phill Kline, is investigating abortion mills because he has reason to believe that the mills may be engaging in illegal late-term abortions outside the exceptions allowed by Kansas law. The legislation vetoed by Sebelius would have made the abortion mills more accountable for their actions.

Sebelius’ media spokesperson, Nicole Corcoran, told the Topeka Capital-Journal, “She’s very clear about her personal beliefs as a Catholic and supports a woman’s right to privacy.”

She supports the right to privacy even when it protects murderers, rapists, sexual abusers, those who commit incest?

What kind of beliefs are those? They are certainly not Catholic, Christian or Jewish beliefs.

Sebelius stated, “My Catholic faith teaches me that life is sacred. Personally, I believe abortion is wrong.”

Then, why aren't you acting on your Catholic beliefs?

Why aren't you living out your faith?

If you believe abortion is wrong, why are you supporting it?

Why are you vetoing legislation that would protect innocent women and children?

Why are you accepting money from late-term abortionist George Tiller?

Why do you go out of your way to support abortionists?

Why do oppose every pro-life bill that comes before you?

Don't you think your constituents can see through this?

Kathy Ostrowski, legislative director for Kansans for Life voiced shock at Sebelius’ statement. “Gov. Sebelius’ attempt in her veto explanation to portray herself as pro-life is outrageous. She cannot re-invent the term, no matter how carefully she chooses her words,” she said.

Sebelius also further offended pro-life supporters by claiming responsibility for the 11% decrease in abortions over the past three years, in spite of the fact that she has actively opposed every pro-life bill that has come before her. She also boasted increasing funding to crisis pregnancy centers, even though she voted to decrease their funding two years ago.

Abortionist George R. Tiller, a specialist in late-term abortions, has contributed tens of thousands of dollars to Sebelius’ campaign coffers. Last year Sebelius intervened in a Kansas Board of Healing Arts investigation against Tiller in the death of a third-trimester abortion patient, Christin Gilbert. The KBHA then “cleared” Tiller of wrong-doing even though the autopsy report clearly indicated a misdiagnosis of Gilbert’s fatal abortion complications, which included Disseminated intravascular coagulation (DIC), an avoidable and treatable complication.
Tiller is currently under investigation by a Sedgwick County Grand Jury in Gilbert’s death.

“Sebelius thinks she can sugar coat the issue of child-killing through abortion, but her attempts to reinvent the English language and deceive the voters of Kansas are transparent,” said Operation Rescue President Troy Newman. “In any other state but Kansas, she would be considered a liar for pretending to be something she is not, and for taking credit for pro-life advances that she avidly fought against.”

“Would you eat at a restaurant that is uninspected, unlicensed, and unaccountable for any food poisoning or deaths that occur there? Of course not, but that is exactly the situation at Kansas abortion mills today, thanks to Tiller crony Kathleen Sebelius,” said Newman. “Sebelius’ attempts to keep the abortion industry completely unaccountable is endangering the lives of women like Christin Gilbert and others. Ultimately, their blood — and the blood of their pre-born babies — is on her hands.”

You need to resign from your position, Kathleen, and return to your faith. Run, don't walk, to Confession. Stop killing women and babies, for you are truly an accomplice with Tiller in endangering the lives of women and in his slaughter of the unborn.

Read Story in the Topeka Capital-Journal

Via Operation Rescue.

The Pope Arrives in Poland

(AP Photo/Diether Endlicher)

(AP Photo/Jens Meyer)

Here is a video/audio from Reuters about his arrival and his trip to Poland. For more, go here.

EWTN is offering live coverage on the Holy Father's trip from May 25 -28.

Saint of the Day: St. Madeleine Sophie Barat

St. Madeleine Sophie was born in Joigny, France on December 12, 1779. She was the third child of a Burgundy vine-grower and barrel - maker.

As a young child, Madeleine Sophie showed exuberance, optomism, good judgment and common sense as well as a strong dedication to God. Louis, her older brother and a priest, was responsible for her early education. At an early age, Madeleine became proficient in Latin, Greek, Spanish and Italian.

Through her brother, she met Father Varin who desired to found a female counterpart of the Jesuits which should do for girls' education what they did for boys' education.

On November 21st, 1800, Madeleine with three companions dedicated herself to the Sacred Heart and so the Society of the Sacred Heart of Jesus was begun. From the first house at Amiens it was to spread in the lifetime of its foundress all over Europe and to Africa and America, and its boarding schools have become famous.

Madeleine's energy in extending the work was seconded by her reliance on God which enabled her to succeed in times of great difficulty. 'Too much work is a danger to an imperfect soul,' she said, 'but for one who loves our Lord it is an abundant harvest.'

Madeleine Sophie Barat was a courageous visionary who fought fiercely for the education of girls at a time when the education of females was almost wholly ignored. In fact, during the early 1800's, it was basically unheard of for a girl to receive a sound education. St. Madeleine Sophie Barat believed that all girls, including those from disadvantaged backgrounds, should have the right to an education. She envisioned communities of learning, stretching around the world, which would provide girls with a complete and well-rounded education.

n May 25, 1865, the Feast of the Ascension, Madeleine Sophie Barat died at the age of 85. Her body, incorrupt, is in Jette, Belgium. She was beatified in 1908 and canonized in 1925.


"Let us attach ourselves to God alone, and turn our eyes and our hopes to Him."

"To suffer myself, and not to make others suffer."

"Our Lord who saved the world through the Cross will only work for the good of souls through the Cross."

"God does not ask of us the perfection of tomorrow, nor even of tonight, but only of the present moment."

"Your example, more than words, will be an eloquent lesson to the world."

~ St. Madeleine Sophie Barat

Wednesday, May 24, 2006

Conversing with Jesus

Today, I am praying for...

the repose of the soul of Sean's dad who recently passed away and peace, comfort, and healing for the family.

healing for Sue, whose cancer is spreading.

the grace, strength, and skills necessary for the two new apostolates /ministries the Lord has called me to.

an unbiased Grand Jury Investigation of George Tiller, late term abortionist in the death of Christin Gilbert.

those who feel abandoned, exiled, and hopeless.

an end to abortion and the closing of all abortion mills.

spiritual, mental, physical, and emotional healing for all those who have been injured by the devastating effects of abortion.

Holy Abortion?

Latter day feminists think abortion is not just fine, it's holy.

Wrote Debi Jackson, owner of Cincinnati Women's Services abortion mill, in a web post recently:

"Imagine... that a woman may create a ceremony... to be performed during the abortion or afterwards with family and friends in attendance... She may have a circle of women friends take part in the procedure itself - an ancient ritual of fertility, life, death, and rebirth...."

A Cincinnati City Beat article last year included a photo of Debi, "practic[ing] an ancient Chinese calming ritual.... Harmonic vibrations caused by rubbing the dragon bowl's brass handles create wavelets and jumping water."

I'll tell you what's jumping, Debi. My skin is, that's what, you sicko.

Then there's... The lunatic fringe goes mainstream on

This is a really bizarre, but interesting post.

Via Jill Stanek and ProLife Blogs.

Sleeping pill wakes men in vegetative state

So reads the headlines of Sarah Boseley's article in The Guardian , which follows.

A drug commonly used as a sleeping pill appears to have had a miraculous effect on brain-damaged patients who have been in a permanent vegetative state for years, arousing them to the point where some are able to speak to their families, scientists report today.

The dramatic improvement occurs within 20 minutes of taking the drug, Zolpidem, and wears off after around four hours - at which point the patients return to their permanent vegetative state, according to a paper published in the medical journal NeuroRehabilitation.

All three patients were men around 30 who had suffered brain damage in car accidents. Patient L had been in a vegetative state for three years, showing no reaction to touch and no response to his family. After he was given the drug, he was able to talk to them. Patient G was also able to interact with family, answer simple questions and catch a baseball. Patient N "was constantly uttering random screams". After he was given the drug, the screaming stopped, and he started watching television and reacting to his family.

Ralf Clauss of the nuclear medicine department of the Royal Surrey County hospital, one of the authors, said that clinical trials were now needed. He said the drug could have uses in all kinds of brain damage, including Parkinson's disease and Alzheimer's.

The Terri Schindler Schiavo Foundation reports that the Schindler family pleaded for years with Terri’s guardian, Michael Schiavo, and the courts to try and use different treatments or medicines that could possibly help improve Terri’s condition, but were denied. The Foundation has been contacted by dozens of families with similar stories of patients improving significantly after being wrongly diagnosed in this PVS condition.

In December 2000, Patricia White Bull, after given the drug Amantadine (used to stimulate people with Parkinson's disease and brain damage) awoke after 16 years of being in what doctors were calling a persistent vegetative state. Sadly, we will never know if any of any of these drugs or treatments that were available would have improved Terri’s condition.

This recent finding and other studies in the past demonstrate the dangers of this subjective and often incorrect diagnosis. A report released by the British Medical Journal in 1996, found that 43% of the diagnosed cases of PVS they studied were, in fact, misdiagnosed.

“We at the Foundation are seeing that the PVS diagnosis is being commonly misdiagnosed. Consequently, it has become very obvious we don’t know enough about this so-called diagnosis, and common sense dictates that the removal of food and water based on this misclassification must end until further studies can be conducted.” Robert Schindler, Sr.

US bishops join Supreme Court plea to uphold partial-birth abortion ban

May. 24 ( - The US bishops' conference has joined several other religious bodies in a plea to the US Supreme Court to uphold a ban on partial-birth abortion.

In an amicus curiae brief, filed in the case of Gonzales v. Carhart, the US Conference of Catholic Bishops joined with the Ethics and Religious Liberty Commission of the Southern Baptist Convention, the International Church of the Foursquare Gospel, the Greek Orthodox Archdiocese of America, and the Lutheran Church-Missouri Synod in asking the Court to reverse a lower court's ruling that a statewide ban on partial-birth abortion in Nebraska was unconstitutional.

The lower federal court had ruled that the Nebraska law violates the principles set by the Supreme Court in the 2000 case Stenberg v. Carhart. In that earlier case the Supreme Court sided with opponents of the ban, who said that the law was unduly vague and restricted a woman's legal right to obtain an abortion. The USCCB and its allies argued that the new Nebraska law is more tightly worded, specifically banning a procedure in which the child is killed while most of its body is outside the mother's womb. "Congress could conclude, as it did here, that the challenged ban is necessary to preserve the distinction between abortion and infanticide and to prevent the latter," the brief argued.

The religious groups argued, too, that the Supreme Court's acceptance of legal abortion is based on the faulty logic of the Roe v. Wade decision, which should be re-examined by the current court. The brief argued that "the error of Roe" should be "more fully and explicitly acknowledged and corrected."

Praise the Lord! It is encouraging to see clergy from various denominations working together to fight this battle.


“The Da Vinci Code” will open in India on Friday. The one-week delay was due to negotiations between Sony Pictures and the nation’s censorship board over the propriety of inserting a disclaimer. Sony has now agreed to put the following statement before and after the movie: “The characters and incidents portrayed and the names herein are fictitious, and any similarity to the name, character or history of any person is entirely coincidental and unintentional.”

Last week, Sony agreed with Thailand’s censorship board to put a disclaimer at the beginning and end of the film saying its content is fictional.

Catholic League president Bill Donohue was amused:

“Some people will do anything for a buck. Having run up against a brick wall in India and Thailand, Sony caved and delivered on the disclaimer they said wasn’t necessary. It was either buckle to the demand or lose money, and Sony did what everyone knew they would do.

“I wrote to Ron Howard on March 18, 2005 asking for a disclaimer. I also wrote a New York Times op-ed page ad that was run on March 6 this year asking for a disclaimer. All I ever heard in response was that such requests would compromise the artistic integrity of those associated with the movie, and that it wasn’t needed because it was just a spy thriller. But neither argument holds water: many movies offer disclaimers and ‘The Da Vinci Code’ is anything but a thriller.

“How ironic it is that in the U.S. and Europe, which are predominantly Christian, no disclaimer is afforded, but in nations that are three percent (India) and one percent (Thailand) Christian, a disclaimer is given. It shouldn’t take the presence of a censorship board to persuade Sony to do the right thing—ethics alone should dictate.”

Ridiculous? You bet!

Saint of the Day: St. Vincent of Lerins, Monk and Writer

St. Vincent of Lerins (d.c.445) was a monk and writer. Born to a noble family of Gaul (modern France), he was probably the brother of St. Lupus of Troyes. Vincent initially served as a soldier but gave it up to become a monk on the island of Lerins off the southern French coast near Cannes. He was ordained there and in about 434 authored his famous work the Commonitorium. Written under the pseudonym Peregrinus, the Commonitorium offered a guide to orthodox teaching and included his famous maxim, the Vincentian Canon, by which he hoped to be able to differentiate between true and false tradition: quod ubique, quod semper, quod ab omnibus credituni est ("what has been believed everywhere, always, and by all"). He believed that the ultimate source of Christian truth was Holy Scripture and that the authority of the Church was to be invoked to guarantee the correct interpretation of Scripture.

Via Our Sunday Visitor's Encyclopedia of Saints.

Wednesday of the Sixth Week of Easter: Australia: Solemnity of Mary Help of Christians

Prayer to Mary Help of the Christians

Mary, most powerful Virgin,You are the mighty and glorious Protector of the Church,You are the marvelous Help of Christians,You are awe-inspiring as an army in battle array.
You have destroyed heresy in the world. In the midst of our anguish, our struggle and our distress defend us from the power of the enemy, and at the hour of our death receive our soul into heaven.

~Saint John Bosco, Franciscan Tertiary and modern Apostle of young people (1815-1888)

Tuesday, May 23, 2006


In June, the U.S. Senate will vote on the marriage amendment to the U.S. Constitution, which will define marriage as between a man and a woman. The U.S. bishops are asking as many Catholics as possible to participate in the Knights of Columbus’ drive to contact their U.S. senators.

To participate, print out the Knights’ response form at Kof or write your own letter using the information here. Find their names and addresses by typing in your Zip code at Why homosexual “marriage” is wrong, and not just for Catholics.

World cultural and legal history has never thought of marriage as anything but one thing: the union of a man and a woman. But just as most abortion proponents want to skip the debate about when life begins and argue about “choice” instead, most homosexual activists want to skip the argument about what marriage is.

Instead, they argue about rights or about discrimination. But the fact is, the very nature of marriage is such that the law severely restricts who can and can’t marry. Marriage is restricted by age, by previous marriage status and by kinship, for starters. It excludes other pairings: roommates, brothers and sisters, and best friends.

Why does society have to restrict marriage so severely? Because marriage performs a crucial function for society. Its purpose is the propagation and protection of children, and to conform sexual relationships to morality for the public good. Homosexual “marriage” would do none of these things.

Think of it this way: If either of your own parents chose a homosexual “marriage,” you wouldn’t be here. And if you were raised by homosexuals, your childhood would likely have been very different from what it was.If you were raised by homosexual men, statistics say your guardians would have had to be hospitalized far more frequently than they were.

Doctors advertise heavily in homosexual publications, because homosexual sex injures its participants.

No matter whether they were men or women, your guardians would have been more likely to have severe emotional problems. Even in countries where homosexuality is accepted, homosexuals suffer higher rates of depression and suicide than the general public.And, as the children of homosexual parents have told the Register, kids are bound to suffer if their parents are part of the homosexual scene.

Homosexual parades are never shown uncensored on television, because exhibitionism is so common in the homosexual community. From the Village People song “YMCA” to the Showtime television show “Queer as Folk,” homosexual culture has long celebrated sex with teens. One of the most often searched-for pornography terms on the Internet is a homosexual slang for teens. In The Gay Report, by homosexual researchers Karla Jay and Allen Young, the authors report data showing that 73% of homosexuals surveyed had at some time had sex with boys 16 to 19 years of age or younger.

It’s easy to fall into the trap of thinking that legalized homosexual “marriage” would simply mean keeping things the way they are, only with health benefits for homosexual couples.In fact, the changes will be dramatic. Public schools will include texts and materials treating the two types of marriages identically. Homosexual couples would be spotlighted whenever romance is spotlighted: on Valentine’s Day at the public library, in Christmas specials on television, radio and billboard advertisements.

If you die leaving children, there will be no guarantee that a heterosexual couple rather than a homosexual couple will adopt them — to prefer one over the other would be illegal prejudice. More Catholic adoption agencies will have to close over the adoption issue.

What can we do?

Write to your representatives in state and federal government and your local newspapers, using the information above.

Pray. In his apostolic letter on the Rosary, Pope John Paul II called for Catholics to pray the Rosary daily for the family. He said attacks on the family were “menacing … so as to make us fear for the future of this fundamental and indispensable institution and, with it, for the future of society as a whole.”

Evangelize. Spread the word about marriage — and strengthen the Christian backbone of our society. Promote Sunday Mass, confession, prayer and community service by printing out and distributing the “How to Be Catholic” guides from


"The response to the commandment of love is made possible only by the experience that this love was first given us by God. The veneration of the love made manifest in the mystery of the Cross, re-presented in each Eucharistic celebration, is, then, the foundation that enables us to become individuals capable of love and of giving ourselves. ... This openness to the will of God, however, must be constantly renewed. 'Love is never finished and complete'."

"Gazing at the side pierced by the lance, where shines God's boundless will for salvation, cannot then be considered as a passing form of veneration or devotion. The adoration of God's love, which found historical-devotional expression in the symbol of the pierced heart, remains irreplaceable for a living relationship with God."

~ Pope Benedict XVI in a Letter to Fr. Peter-Hans Kolvenbach S.J., Superior General of the Society of Jesus (Jesuits), for the 50th anniversary of Pope Pius XII's Encyclical "Haurietis aquas" on devotion to the Sacred Heart of Jesus

Saint of the Day:St. John Baptist Rossi, Priest

Born at Voltaggio near Genoa, as a priest in Rome he worked for forty years among the sick and the poor, and especially among cattle-drovers and homeless women. He was in great demand as a confessor, and he once said that the shortest road to Heaven lay in guiding others to the confessional.

Operation Rescue Appeals to the Public: Help Keep the Tiller Investigation Honest

May 23rd, 2006
Operation Rescue is asking for the public to help keep the investigation honest.

Wichita, KS – A grand jury convened on Monday for the first time to begin an investigation of late-term abortionist George R. Tiller in the death of Christin Gilbert.

A group of about 20 Christians gathered to pray for the grand jury proceedings outside the Sedgwick County Courthouse where Chief Administrative Judge of the 18th District Court Richard Ballinger is presiding over the secret proceedings. Reports indicated that a panel of 15 jurors was being selected during Monday’s session.

Responses from the District Attorney’s office to public inquiries about the case have troubled some of the members of the grassroots coalition that helped gather over 7,700 signatures to force the grand jury to convene. Operation Rescue was informed yesterday that the DA’s office was not taking the grand jury investigation seriously due to the fact that the Kansas State Board of Healing Arts cleared Tiller of wrongdoing in Gilbert’s death in November.

“The DA’s office is missing the entire point of the citizen demand for an independent investigation,” said Operation Rescue President Troy Newman. “We have strong reason to believe that the KSBHA investigation was tainted by political influence and cronyism. People who were financially and politically tied to Tiller are the ones who ‘cleared’ him. Those people cannot be trusted because they owe their jobs and political positions to Tiller’s large financial campaign contributions.”

“We know that District Attorney Nola Foulston is personal friends with George Tiller, and that should disqualify her from having anything to do with this grand jury. Foulston already refused to even look at this case when it was initially presented in 2005, so there is no reason for us to believe that she will act without bias now,” said Newman.

“If the DA’s office continues the whitewash of this case, it will only add to the appearance that a cover-up into Christin’s death is active and underway,” said Newman.

News reports continue to mischaracterize Gilbert’s death. “We have heard outrageously false statements in the media such as the report yesterday that Christin died weeks after her abortion, and other reports that claimed she died of pneumonia or some other ‘pre-existing’ condition, “said Newman. “One has to wonder at the lack of integrity of reporters who would publish such obvious nonsense when the facts of the case are readily available for anyone to see.”

Operation Rescue is asking the public to hold the judicial system accountable to conduct an honest investigation by doing two things:

1. Contact District Attorney Nola Foulston and ask her to remove herself from any decision-making regarding the Grand Jury proceedings in the investigation of George Tiller.
District Attorney Nola Foulston

535 N. Main,
Wichita, KS 67203
Voice: 316-660-3600;
Toll free: 800-432-6878

2. If anyone has any information that could assist the Grand Jury regarding sub-standard care or illegal activities by Tiller, Women’s Health Care Services, or its staff in the case of Christin Gilbert or any other matter, please submit your information to the court in care of Judge Ballinger. The court has wide discretion to broaden the investigation.

Judge Richard Ballinger
535 N. Main, Room 7-2,
Wichita, KS 67203
Voice: 316-660-5613

OPINION: The Appearance of Impropriety Demands an Honest Investigation

Monday, May 22, 2006

Best of the Blogosphere

A View from the Pew presents an interesting and thought -provoking view of knowledge in Do You Want to Know a Secret?

At Vivificat, Theophilus has been selected has been selected to particpate in the diocanate program in his Catholic diocese. He writes about it here. Go over and congratulate him and let him know you're praying for him.

Jay at Pro Eccesia shares some interesting views in his post: Cardinal Arinze in to AmChurch Bishops: Get with the Program.

In his post A Daily Reflection, Taken From The Writings of Elisabeth Leseur, Joe introduces us to the spirituality of a 19th century French housewife.

Conversing with Jesus - Updated

Today I am praying for...

the Grand Jury Investigation of criminal allegations against late-term
abortionist George R. Tiller in the death of Christin A. Gilbert. I am praying for justice for Christin.

the repose of the soul of Catholic Caveman's father and for peace, comfort, and healing for his family.

this heartbreaking situation.

Donna, who is recovering from a heart bypass and laser eye surgery. She is having complications due to diabetes and has gone completely blind.

B. who is giving a special presentation tomorrow afternoon.

the conversion of Madonna and an end to her Christ-bashing.

reparation for the sins of those who blaspheme Christ.

an end to abortion and the closing of all abortion mills.

an increase in vocations to the priesthood and the religious life.

healing for all those who all those who are afflicted with same sex attraction.

a special intention.

Federal Partial-Birth Abortion Ban Act Defended In The United States Supreme Court

Mon, May 22, 2006 ANN ARBOR, MI — The Thomas More Law Center, a national public interest law firm based in Ann Arbor, Michigan, has submitted a brief with the United States Supreme Court supporting the Federal Partial-Birth Abortion Ban Act of 2003. Joining the Thomas More Law Center in the friend of the court brief are the Catholic League and the National Pro-Life Alliance.

The appeal to the Supreme Court involves a decision by the United States Court of Appeals for the Eighth Circuit in Nebraska that found the federal Act to be unconstitutional. Two other federal courts of appeal, the Second Circuit in New York and the Ninth Circuit in California, have also ruled the Act unconstitutional.

The Act bans the abortion procedure wherein an unborn baby, generally 20 weeks or longer in gestation, is removed from her mother’s womb, except for the head. The doctor punctures the child’s head, sucks out the child’s brains in order to collapse the skull, and then removes the dead child from the mother.

According to Richard Thompson, President and Chief Counsel of the Law Center, “Partial-birth abortion is nothing other than infanticide, and this barbaric procedure must be stopped.” [More]

Mel Gibson Slams DaVinci Code; Mel for Tom Hanks?

Catholic actor MEL GIBSON has slammed THE DA VINCI CODE book and movie for attacking the beliefs that he holds so sacred. But THE PASSION OF THE CHRIST star has been outraged with the thriller's controversial plot concerning JESUS CHRIST and MARY MAGDALENE.

Gibson tells, "What worries me is that people will take this as fact."I'm not angry, per se, that it refutes everything I hold sacred, the foundations of my beliefs."

The Da Vinci Code is an admitted work of fiction but it cleverly weaves fact into maverick theories in a way that will appear plausible to some."

The angry star was actually the first choice of DR ROBERT LOMAS' (the intellectual who inspired the ROBERT LANGDON character) to play him, not TOM HANKS.Lomas says, "In an ideal world I'd quite like to have been played by Mel Gibson."

Dream on...

Kansas Spends $150K for Adult Stem Cell Research With Umbilical Cords

Rep. Mary Pilcher-Cook

Topeka, KS ( -- In the final version of the state budget lawmakers approved, Kansas will spend $150,000 to fund a research project at Kansas University on adult stem cell research using umbilical cord blood. They weren't able to get a ban on human cloning but hope the adult stem cell studies will lessen the desire to support embryonic stem cell research.

Rep. Mary Pilcher-Cook, a pro-life Republican legislator, inserted the adult stem cell research funding in the bill. She said the funds are a good alternative to embryonic stem cells, which require the destruction of human life to obtain and have not seen the same success as adult cells.

“Some of the leading-edge research is coming from stem cells extracted from umbilical cords,” she told the Lawrence newspaper.

She hopes embryonic stem cell research will "fade away" because of the controversy surrounding it and the fact that it hasn't yet been successful in animals -- yet alone humans.

Kathy Mitchell, the KU assistant professor who will get the funds for her lab, told the Lawrence Journal World newspaper that she favors both kinds of stem cell research and is happy to get the funds.

“I believe that all types of stem cell research should be done because there is much to be learned,” she said.
Her lab is studying the basic characteristics of cells from umbilical cord blood and how they compare with other adult stem cells.

She told the newspaper the umbilical cord cells are useful because the are better accepted by a patient's immune system than embryonic ones and are much less likely to cause tumors or other problems when injected.

Pilcher-Cook says the money is well spent.

“I wish it could've been a lot more” in funding, she told the LJW.

“Each of us have some diseases in our family that are very painful. This would give people the ability to put their money toward research where there is new progress every day."

This is great news! I am looking forward to the results. Hopefully, this will stop the use of embryonic stem cell research, which require the destruction of human life. Great job, Mary!


(AP Photo/Chris Pizzello)

The singer Madonna kicked off her “Confessions” tour in Los Angeles yesterday. Between political statements and oral sex jokes, Madonna found the time to don a crown of thorns, hang from a mirrored cross and croon her ballad “Live to Tell” in front of a screen flashing images from the Third World.

Commenting on this is Bill Donohue:

“When the Material Girl first embraced Kabbalah, we thought her new-found faith would inspire her to show some respect for religion. It stands to reason that a woman whose faith is so important to her that she drags her rabbi to her concerts would not want to mock the faith of others.

“But I guess you really can’t teach an old pop star new tricks. Madonna has been spicing up her act with misappropriated Christian imagery for a long time now. Perhaps she can’t arouse any interest in her work without it. Poor Madonna keeps trying to shock. But all she succeeds in doing is coming across as a boring bigot.

“Do us all a favor, Madge, and stick to singing and dancing. Knock off the Christ-bashing. It’s just pathetic.”

Saint Rita of Cascia, Religious, Patron Saint of Desperate Causes

St. Rita was born at Rocca Porena in the Diocese of Spoleto in 1386 to Antonio and Amata Lotti, who were quite advanced in years. Rita’s birth was an answer to their prayers. The family was well-known for their charity, which merited them the surname of "Peacemakers of Jesus Christ". Rita brought much joy to her parents. She was a cheerful, amiable, pious and devout child who spent much of her time in prayer. At the age of twelve, she desired to consecrate herself to God in the religious state. Pious though her parents were, they refused her pleas, but instead gave her away in marriage, at the age of eighteen, to an ill-tempered young man who was the town watchman. The couple had two sons, who inherited their father's temperament.

After 18 years of marriage, Rita’s husband was murdered by an old enemy. Her sons swore vengeance on their father’s killers, but through Rita's intercessory prayers, they forgave the offenders. Both of her sons died shortly afterwards.

Rita's former desire to consecrate herself to God in the religious life returned. On three separate occasions, she asked to be admitted to the Augustinian Nuns, but her request was refused each time, and she returned home to Rocca Porrena. One night, as Rita was praying, she heard someone call her name and a knock on the door. Miraculously she was instantly transported to the Augustinian monastery. Astonished at the miracle, the Nuns received Rita, and accepted her as one of their own.

St. Rita lived a very austere life and performed many severe penances. After hearing a homily on the Passion of Christ she returned to her cell; kneeling before her crucifix, she prayed: "Let me, my Jesus share in Thy suffering, at least of one of Thy thorns". Her prayer was answered. Suddenly one of the thorns detached itself from Christ’s crown of thorns and fastened itself on her forehead so deeply that she could not remove it. The wound became worse, and gangrene set in. Because of the foul odor emanating from the wound, she was denied the companionship of the other Sisters for fifteen years.

As St. Rita was dying, she requested a relative to bring her a rose from her old home at Rocca Porrena. Although it was not the season for roses, the relative went and found a rose in full bloom. For this reason roses are blessed in the Saint's honor. She died May 22, 1456, and both in life and after death has worked many miracles.

After St. Rita's death, her face became beautifully radiant, while the odor from her wound was as fragrant as that of the roses she loved so much. The sweet odor spread through the convent and into the church, where it has continued ever since. Her body has remained incorrupt to this day; the face is beautiful and well preserved.

When St. Rita died her cell was aglow with heavenly light, while the great bell of the monastery rang of itself. A relative with a paralyzed arm, upon touching her sacred remains, was cured. A carpenter, who had known the Saint, offered to make the coffin. Immediately, he recovered the use of his long stiffened hands.

St. Rita of Cascia was the first woman to be canonized in the Great Jubilee at the beginning of the 20th century, on May 24, 1900.

Rita is well-known as a patron of desperate, seemingly impossible causes and situations. She is also the patron saint of abuse victims, difficult marriages, infertility, impossible causes, parenthood, sterility, and widows.


The saint of Cascia belongs to the great host of Christian women who "have had a significant impact on the life of the Church as well as of society" (Apostolic Letter Mulieris dignitatem, n. 27). Rita well interpreted the "feminine genius" by living it intensely in both physical and spiritual motherhood.

~ Pope John Paul II, the Great

Prayer to Saint Rita

Holy Patroness of those in need, Saint Rita, you were humble, pure and patient. Your pleadings with your divine Spouse are irresistible, so please obtain for me from our risen Jesus the request I make of you: {mention your petition}. Be kind to me for the greater glory of God, and I shall honor you and sing your praises forever. Glorious Saint Rita, you miraculously participated in the sorrowful passion of our Lord Jesus Christ. Obtain for me now the grace to suffer with resignation the troubles of this life, and protect me in all my needs. Amen.

Saturday, May 20, 2006

Saint of the Day: St. Bernadine of Siena, Priest

St. Bernardine was born in 1380 in Tuscany. His parents died when he was seven years old and he was taken in by relatives who raised him as if he were their own.

As a youth, he possessed a strong love for the Blessed Virgin Mary and spoke to her as a child speaks to his mother. She kept him chaste and pure.

While still a student at the University of Siena, he took charge of the hospital there when an epidemic killed most of the staff. Later he looked after a bedridden aunt until her death.

At the age of 22, he became a Franciscan. He was an energetic and popular preacher who spent years travelling on foot throughout Italy preaching to huge audiences. As a priest, he promoted peace among the warring Italian cities, and worked hard for the reform of the Franciscan order and for church unity. He encouraged devotion to the Holy Name of Jesus and is known for his use of the monogram IHS.

Bernadine died on May 20, 1444, at the age of sixty-four in Aquila, Italy. He was declared a saint in 1450, by Pope Nicholas V. Saint Bernardine is the patron of advertisers and advertising; he is invoked against hoarseness.

When a fire is lit to clear a field, it burns off all the dry and useless weeds and thorns. When the sun rises and darkness is dispelled, robbers, night-prowlers and burglars hide away. So when Paul's voice was raised to preach the Gospel to the nations, like a great clap of thunder in the sky, his preaching was a blazing fire carrying all before it. It was the sun rising in full glory. Infidelity was consumed by it, false beliefs fled away, and the truth appeared like a great candle lighting the whole world with its brilliant flame.

By word of mouth, by letters, by miracles, and by the example of his own life, Saint Paul bore the name of Jesus wherever he went. He praised the name of Jesus "at all times," but never more than when "bearing witness to his faith."

Moreover, the Apostle did indeed carry this name "before the Gentiles and kings and the sons of Israel" as a light to enlighten all nations. And this was his cry wherever he journeyed: "The night is passing away, the day is at hand. Let us then cast off the works of darkness and put on the armor of light; let us conduct ourselves honorably as in the day." Paul himself showed forth the burning and shining-light set upon a candlestick, everywhere proclaiming "Jesus, and him crucified."

And so the Church, the bride of Christ strengthened by his testimony, rejoices with the psalmist, singing: "O God from my youth you have taught me, and I still proclaim your wondrous deeds." The psalmist exhorts her to do this, as he says: "Sing to the Lord, and bless his name, proclaim his salvation day after day." And this salvation is Jesus, her savior.

~from a sermon by Saint Bernadine of Siena