Showing posts from January, 2012

Breaking: Komen to Stop Grants to Planned Parenthood

This is wonderful news! What a great victory for life!

After years of protests and criticism from pro-life advocates, the biggest breast cancer organization, Susan G. Komen for the Cure has announced it is halting further grants and donations to the Planned Parenthood.

Figures from August directly from the Komen for the Cure foundation show 18 affiliates of the breast cancer charity gave a total of more than $569,000 to the Planned Parenthood abortion business in 2010. That was down from the $731,303 Komen officials publicly confirmed in October 2010, when they acknowledged that 20 of the 122 Komen affiliates gave to Planned Parenthood during the 2009 fiscal year.

Now, Komen says it is halting all grants because of public pressure from pro-life groups and due to the impending investigation in Congress of the Planned Parenthood abortion business.

The policy makes it so no further Planned Parenthood grants will be given unless the investigation results in Planned Parenthood’s favor.


Vatican's Secret Archives turn 400 years old

January 31, 2012. ( Within the walls of Vatican City is stored one of the most important treasures in the world, the Vatican's Secret Archives.

Only a limited number of people can access documents kept here by the Catholic Church. It's free to gain access, but only academics and historians are allowed and they must request authorization from the Vatican.

The Vatican Secret Archives began under Pope Paul V. It was officially opened 400 years ago on January 31 in 1612. It's called “secret” from its Latin name “secretum” meaning “private”. Since it opened, it's become the private archive of the popes.

In 1810, Napoleon Bonaparte took over 3,000 documents to Paris. After his fall from power, the files over time made their way back to the Vatican. Although during these transfers, many valuable documents were lost, some of which were from the fifth century.

Today, 400 years after its creation, the archive has over 50 miles of shelving, filled with books, p…

St. John Bosco

Today the Church commerates the life of St. John Bosco (1815-1888), a priest who founded the Salesian Society, named in honor of St. Francis de Sales, and of the Daughters of Mary, Help of Christians.

Born in 1815, Giovanni (John) Melchior Bosco was the youngest son of a poor farmer in hamlet of Becchi in northern Italy. John lost his father at age two and was raised by his mother.

At age nine, John had a dream that predicted his vocation. In the dream, he was surrounded by a crowd of swearing and fighting children he attempted to pacify, first by reasoning with them verbally, then by hitting them. Then, suddenly a mysterious woman appeared who instructed him, “Softly, softly…if you wish to win them! Take your shepherds staff if you wish to lead them to pasture.” As she spoke the children transformed first into wild beasts, then into lambs.

From this time on, John believed that it was his duty to lead and to help other boys.He began teaching the children of his village catechism, firs…

Rick Santorum's Daughter Bella Has 'Miraculous Turnaround'

We learned today that Rick Santorum's daughter has had a miraculous turnaround, but it was a very close call. shares the following:

A simple cold can kill her, and it almost did this weekend. She ended up with pneumonia and a cold,” Santorum told Glenn Beck on his radio show Monday. “But she was able to get great care and yesterday really made a great turn around and she will be out of the ICU today and so we are getting back to normal here.”

“She had a very tough go of it, but yesterday afternoon she rallied, and she’s on the mend,” he said. “We are feeling very, very blessed, I just want to thank everybody for their prayers.”

“She’s had a miraculous turnaround,” Santorum said. “We have a long way to go, but she turned the corner and we are very, very grateful.”

Read the full story there.

View the embedded video here.

Previous Post: Prayers Needed for Rick Santorum's Daughter

Funny Video: Pope Benedict XVI releases doves only to have them re-enter his window

January 30, 2012. (  The pope released doves to ask for peace. One remained on his window sill and the other flew a few yards and then came back into his office.

“They want to be in the pope's house!” exclaimed Benedict XVI.

This charming scene occurred during the Angelus prayer, that was attended by families and youth of Catholic Action, who participated in the 'Caravan of Peace '.

Fr. Barron on the HHS Contraception Mandate


St. Hyacintha Mariscotti

The saint of the day for January 30th is St. Hyacintha Mariscotti (1585-1640), a religious of the Third Order of St. Francis and foundress of the Sacconi, also known as the Oblates of Mary.

Born of a wealthy, noble family near Viterbo, Italy, Hyacintha was pious in her early youth, but, as she grew older became frivolous, vain, and proud of her rank. When her younger sister married the man she desired as her spouse, she became disappointed and depressed. She sought refuge from her sorrows in a Franciscan convent. However, when she entered the convent, she refused to give up the luxuries of the world, but instead arrived at the convent with her own personal servants and chef. She came with a full supply of food, wore garments of the finest materials, and demanded a full suite of rooms, which she decorated lavishly. She received both male and female visitors at her pleasure. Thus, she lived a very worldly and luxurious life amid those who had pledged themselves to lives of poverty and…

Prayers Needed for Rick Santorum's Daughter

Rick Santorum cancelled all his campaign stops in Florida after his daughter, Isabella Marie, who has Trisomy 18, was admitted to a Philadelphia hospital.  Let's all pray for her and for the Santorum family.

Catholic Motivational Poster

This perceptive poster on prayer was created by Marcel at Aggie Catholics:


Stanek's Weekend Question: Complete this sentence for Planned Parenthood’s new ad campaign: “We’re your…”

Planned Parenthood of Northern New England has a new ad campaign, which completes this sentence in a variety of sexually suggestive ways: “We’re your….” Click all graphics to enlarge…

Check out Jill Stanek's weekend question and complete the sentence about Planned Parenthood. "We're your..."

Pro-life Quote of the Day: Pia de Solenni on the HHS mandate

"The point is that the Catholic Church (that includes the Bishops, the clergy, and the laity) is facing a crisis that is deeply rooted in the failure of catechesis. Without thorough catechesis, people in the Church – whatever their vocation or state in life – lack the conviction and strength to be effective Catholic witnesses. And when the secular media does discuss issues like same-sex marriage, contraception, abortion, et al, than the Church does, well then we’re faced with things like this new HHS mandate, not to mention other even more serious issues."

~ Dr. Pia de Solenni from her post at Catholic Vote, Emily's Right

Fr. Barron comments on St. Thomas Aquinas


St. Thomas of Aquinas, "Angelic Doctor"

Image Source

Happy Feast of St. Thomas Aquinas! As a graduate student in theology, I pray daily to St. Thomas Aquinas, my dear friend and intercessor, who has helped me through some trying times. Today is his feast day and I plan to celebrate it heartily, but first, let me share a little about him.

Saint Thomas Aquinas was a great medieval theologian and philosopher, who died at the age of 49, leaving behind a body of work that would have taken three normal lifetimes to complete. As a Doctor of the Church, he has been given the title "Angelic Doctor" and is the patron of Catholic universities and schools. His most important work, the Summa Theologiae, an explanation and summary of the entire body of Catholic teaching, has been standard for centuries, even to our own day. St. Thomas, a Dominican priest, reflected the Dominican ideal. He was a true contemplative who shared the fruits of contemplation with others.

Born of a noble family in southern Italy, Thomas was educated by…

Cardinal Designate Timothy Dolan on the Intolerance of the Obama Adminstration

Cardinal-Designate has written an op-ed in the Wall Street Journal which you will definitely want to read. Here is an excerpt:

On Friday, the administration reaffirmed the mandate, and offered only a one-year delay in enforcement in some cases—as if we might suddenly be more willing to violate our consciences 12 months from now. As a result, all but a few employers will be forced to purchase coverage for contraception, abortion drugs and sterilization services even when they seriously object to them. All who share the cost of health plans that include such services will be forced to pay for them as well. Surely it violates freedom of religion to force religious ministries and citizens to buy health coverage to which they object as a matter of conscience and religious principle.

The rule forces insurance companies to provide these services without a co-pay, suggesting they are "free"—but it is naïve to believe that. There is no free lunch, and you can be sure there's no …

Council of Europe votes against euthanasia

January 27, 2012. ( For the first time in decades, euthanasia has been directly rejected by the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe.

In a resolution, it says “euthanasia, in the sense of the intentional killing by act or omission of a dependent human being for his or her alleged benefit, must always be prohibited.”

Even though some European countries allow euthanasia, this resolution shows that as a whole Europe opposes it. It also highlights that intentional killing, should not be allowed.

The resolution states that when people are faced with an ill family member, one should always opt for “pro-life” and the prolongation of life.

The Council of Europe is based in Strasbourg, France. It includes 47 European countries. Its objectives are the protection of human rights, rule of law, promoting culture and consolidating democratic stability.

Belgium and Holland for example legally allow euthanasia. But this, resolution sends a clear message that as a whole …

Cardinal Wuerl asks for views of Catholics not to be marginalized in public debate

January 27, 2012. ( Cardinal Donald Wuerl of Washington is following up on the pope's call to fight secularism. Cardinal Wuerl says that it has spread to many different industries in the US.

“It used to be that across our country the voices of all were respected. Now there is this emphasis particularly in the entertainment media, in the information industry to make everything a secular gray. And to say that there can only be one voice, determining public policy, public life, the direction of the community, the common good, and that that voice must be secular,” said the cardinal.

On January 20th, the White House also announced that religious non-profit organizations such as hospitals and universities will have to include birth control as part of their health care, but gave them one year to comply.

Religious groups are saying their rights are not being respected. Cardinal Wuerl is hoping the New Evangelization can help to create a revival of Christian values. He ha…

St. Angela Merici

Today is the optional memorial of St. Angela Merici, the foundress of the Ursulines. Angela was born on March 21, 1474 at Desenzano, Lake Garda, Italy and died on January 27, 1540 in Brescia.

Angela’s parents died when she was only ten years old. Together, with her older sister, she moved to the nearby town of Salo, to live with her uncle. When her sister died quite suddenly without receiving the last sacraments, Angela was deeply upset. At the age of 15, she became a Franciscan tertiary and greatly increased her prayers and sacrifices for the repose of her sister's soul. She asked God to reveal to her the condition of her deceased sister and He answered her prayer by showing her through a vision that her sister was in Heaven.

When her uncle died, she returned to live at Desenzano to make a life for herself. She was convinced of the need for women to be educated in their faith and converted her home into a school where she daily gathered all the girls of Desenzano and taught them…

Leticia Velasquez - A Special Mother is Born

Leticia discusses her experiences as the mother of a special needs child, which are described in her new book A Special Mother is Born.

Ten Tips for Successful Catholic Blogging

Joe Heschmeyer at Shameless Popery has written a post with some great tips for successful blogging for those just starting out, as well as for more experienced bloggers. Posts like this are helpful to all bloggers -- as we strive to develop new ways to improve our blogging skills to maintain the interest of our current readership and to attract new readers. Reaching out to others to spread the good news is my ultimate goal and that of most of many Catholics bloggers I know.

To learn more about Catholic blogging, read the many helpful of posts at The Church and the New Media.

More Tips:

Six Blogging Tips for Boomers.

5 Things Every Catholic Should Know About How Search Engines Work

March For Life 2012 - Highlights from EWTN's exclusive coverage


Sts. Timothy and Titus

Memorial of Sts. Timothy and Titus

St. Paul was so influential and attractive a personality that he was able to draw such different types of men as Timothy and Titus and to make them his collaborators. Timothy and Titus were converted to Christianity by St Paul, and became his companions and helpers. They were were two of the most beloved and trusted disciples of St. Paul, whom they accompanied in many of his journeys.

Paul made both men bishops and entrusted Timothy with the care of the Christians in Ephesus, and sent Titus to Crete to look after the Christians there. He wrote them “pastoral” epistles, giving advice for pastors and people alike.

Timothy was St. Paul's confidant. St. Timothy has been regarded by some as the "angel of the church of Ephesus", Rev 2:1-17.

Titus was the negotiator, the one St. Paul sent to clear up misunderstandings, reconcile differences, and the one who would organize a new Church. He received a letter from St. Paul which encouraged Christ…

March for Life 2012: Christendom Leads the Way

I'm sure my Spiritual Father, a graduate of Christendom, will be happy to see this one!

On January 23, the entire student body of Christendom College, including members of the faculty and staff, led hundreds of thousands in protesting abortion at the 39th Annual March for Life in Washington, D.C. Select students were given the honor of carrying the lead March for Life banner as well as the official March for Life flags.

March For Life 2012 -- The Rebellion


Benedict XVI dedicates General Audience to prayer of Jesus at Last Supper

January 25, 2012. ( During the general audience, following his series of reflections on prayer, the Pope reflected on the prayer of Jesus before the Passion.

In it he says “Jesus, priest and victim, prays that the Father will glorify him in this, the hour of his sacrifice of reconciliation” for the sins of all men.


Dear Brothers and Sisters,

In our continuing catechesis on Christian prayer, we now turn to the priestly prayer which Jesus offered at the Last Supper (cf. Jn 17:1-26). Against the backdrop of the Jewish feast of expiation Yom Kippur, Jesus, priest and victim, prays that the Father will glorify him in this, the hour of his sacrifice of reconciliation. He asks the Father to consecrate his disciples, setting them apart and sending them forth to continue his mission in the world.

Christ also implores the gift of unity for all those who will believe in him through the preaching of the apostles. His priestly prayer can thus be seen as in…

Eduardo Verastegui recorded a song dedicated to Benedict XVI

January 25, 2012. ( The actor and film producer Eduardo Verastegui has recorded a new song for the pope's upcoming visit to Mexico. In March, Benedict XVI will make his first visit to the country. While the official agenda for the visit was being confirmed, the star of the film “Bella” wanted to do something to welcome the pope.

Verastegui was part of the group Kairo that also released a solo album. In the past, he's performed with singers like Alejandro Sanz, Shakira and Gloria Estefan at the taping of “The Last Goodbye,” an emotional song dedicated to the victims of the September 11th attacks.

Not much is known about the melody of the song dedicated to Benedict XVI. But it's planned to be released in a few weeks and will probably become one of the most popular song in Latin music this March.

The Feast of the Conversion of St. Paul and My Own Conversion

Today the Church celebrates the Feast of the Conversion of St. Paul, which gives us occasion to reflect on our own faith journey and our own conversion experiences. How do we relate to Paul’s conversion story?

Paul was the most ferocious enemy of the Church, who as a zealous Jew and Pharisee was persecuting Christians during the first century. Paul rooted out Christians in the synagogues, taking them into Jerusalem in chains to have them persecuted. In fact, he even assisted in the stoning of St. Stephen, the first martyr. Then, suddenly, without warning, as he is traveling on the road to Damascus, he hears the voice of God speaking to Him, is blinded by a bright light, and is knocked off his horse. While Paul was an intellectual, a learned Rabbi, a great theologian, his conversion experience was hardly an intellectual one. He was not converted by reason, by an acceptance of Christian ideas, nor was he swayed over by Christian apologetics, but his was a deeply spiritual experience.

Pope calls journalists to reflect on the power of silence... and Twitter

January 24, 2012. ( The pope has called for journalists to learn the capacity of listening and reflection for the annual World Day of Communication. The Vatican's Council of Social Communication presented his message called “Silence and Word: Path of Evangelization.” It says that as much, if not more, could be said with silence instead of the spoken word.

The president of the Vatican's department of communications believes this message is a reflection of the pope's personality and his outlook on being human.

Msgr. Claudio Maria Celli
President, Pontifical Council for Social Communications
“I think that it's not only his personal characteristics but probably his knowledge, his thinking, his reflection about the human being is helping us to rediscover what it means to give an authentic deep sense, human sense to my communication.”

The pope's message also says that communication has largely moved to search engines and social networks on the web. It n…

Our Lady of Fatima on Fox News

Go here to learn more about the documentary.

Pro-life Quote of the Day: Bishop Robert Vasa

“Any government leader, particularly those who claim to be Christian, who claims to be pro-choice, is unworthy of public office.”

~ Bishop Robert Vasa, Santa Rosa, California at a pro-life rally marking the 39th anniversary of the Supreme Court’s Roe v. Wade decision

The March for Life 2012 Photos You Probably Haven't Seen

OSV posts a number of them here. Check out the slideshow at Mommy Life.  You'll find even more here.  Crescat has some personal photos posted here.

U.S. Bishops vow to fight against contraception mandate

January 24, 2012. ( The U.S Conference of Catholic Bishops says religious freedom is facing a serious threat in America.

At the center of it all, is a health care mandate that would require employers and insurance companies to offer contraception, sterilization and abortion inducing drugs.

Msgr. Timothy Dolan
U.S Conference of Catholic Bishops, President
“It's requiring almost all Americans, even those with ethical or religious objections to pay for this coverage.”

In this video, produced by the Conference of Catholic Bishops, Dolan says the mandate does have an exemption, but it's limited. In essence, he says, the health care plan violates religious freedom, virtually ignoring the rights of those who oppose it.

Msgr. Timothy Dolan
U.S Conference of Catholic Bishops, President
“The administration offered a very narrow religious exemption to some employers such as Churches, but the government will still require almost all Americans to pay for this coverage, …

Best Messages from Pro-life Leaders at March for Life 2012

"Mr. President, the violent destruction of children in the womb—killing babies—is not an American value.

Mr. President, Americans by an overwhelming majority oppose abortion on demand and value the lives of women and unborn children.

Mr. President, stop imposing abortion policies on American institutions and religious organizations. 

America values religious freedom.

Mr. President, abortion is not, never was, and never will be an American value.

Stop forcing abortion on America and the world!"

~ Congressman Chris Smith (R-NJ)

Read his full speech.

Listen to all of the messages here:

Walk for Life West Coast 2012 Photos

This was taken at the Walk for Life - West Coast in San Francisco on Saturday, January 21. Check out the rest at Sr. Lisa-Marie's Nun blog, Nunspeak.

St. Francis de Sales, Mentor and Model

St. Francis de Sales (1567-1622), a Swiss theologian and the patron saint of writers has long been my mentor and model, and one of my most powerful intercessors. As a graduate student in theology and as a freelance writer, I look to him for guidance and for assistance in my studies and my writing. His unique methods of evangelization have also greatly inspired me.

At the age of thirteen, Francis studied theology at the University of Paris and immediately afterword earned a doctorate in law. However, he felt called to the priesthood and was ordained and during the time of the Protestant Reformation. The Catholic Church at this time was losing many of its parishioners to the new churches of the Protestant Reformation and Francis set out to restore Catholicism to the area around Lake Geneva known as Chablais.

For three years, he trudged through the countryside, his feet frozen and bleeding, as he trampled through the snow. No one would listen to him, so he wrote out his sermons, copyi…

7 Things You Can Do to Fight the Contraception Mandate

Here are some great suggestions from Truth and Charity:

1.  Pray! We all intend to pray for an end to abortion, contraception, and any other practices which defile human life, but how often do you offer a rosary or divine mercy chaplet specifically for those issues? Do you fast? Try skipping one meal per week. Heck, try giving up every snack or even just butter on your roll or gravy on your potatoes. Even the smallest sacrifice for our Lord can do wondrous things.

2.  Call your Congressmen! Congress holds the purse strings of the Federal Government, and empirical data suggests that Congress doesn’t generally act unless the public expresses outrage. (Follow this link and use the directory at the top right of the page to find your Congressman’s info.)

3.  Take courage! Christ instituted the Church in a time when many were hostile to outside religions. Christ himself was crucified, and countless followers were martyred for their belief in his teaching. Their martyrdom did not d…

Documentary remembers Archbishop Fulton Sheen as great evangelist

January 23, 2012. ( He's been called “The John the Baptist of our times,” Archbishop Fulton Sheen is remembered by many as the greatest evangelist in the history of the United States. When television was still in its infancy, Archbishop Sheen hosted his own show called “Life is Worth Living,” that would reach 30 million viewers per week.

His cause for beatification and canonization was opened in 2002 in Peoria, Illinois, where Archbishop Sheen was originally ordained as a priest in 1919. In December, the investigation tribunal into an alleged miracle was closed and sent to the Vatican for review.

Also, now available is the documentary “Servant of All,” which tells Sheen's story and shows the testaments from many who were close to him or affected by his life.

Msgr. Daniel R. Jenky
Bishop of Peoria, Illinois
“He really was one of the most important evangelists in the history of the United States. He may have more souls to his record than anybody else in our n…

Thousands of Young People attend March for Life Activities

28,000 Catholic Young People fill the Verizon Center in Washington DC each year for a rally and Mass prior to the Prolife March. This year an additional 10,000 also filled the Armory.

Read To March for Life is to Experience Life by Msgr. Charles Pope.

Pro-life Quote of the Day: Archbishop Chaput

“Abortion kills a child, it wounds a precious part of a woman’s own dignity and identity, and it steals hope. That’s why it’s wrong. That’s why it needs to end. That’s why we march.”

~ Archbishop Charles J. Chaput speaking at Georgetown University on Jan. 22, 2012.

National Day of Prayer and Penance for Life


St. Ildephonsus

Today's saint of the day is St. Ildephonsus.

St. Ildephonsus was the Archbishop of Toledo, and died 23 January, 667. He was born of a distinguished family and was the nephew of St. Eugenius, his predecessor in the See of Toledo. At an early age, despite the determined opposition of his father, he embraced the monastic life in the monastery of Agli, near Toledo. He was ordained a deacon, around the year 630. He was called by King Reccesvinth, near the end of 657 to fill the archiepiscopal throne of Toledo, where he governed the Church of Toledo for just over nine years and was buried in the Basilica of Saint Leocadia.

Ildephonsus had a strong devotion to the Blessd Mother, and it is said that one day he was praying before the relics of Saint Leocadia, when the martyr arose from her tomb and thanked the saint for the devotion he showed towards the Mother of God. It was also related that on another occasion the Blessed Virgin appeared to him in person and presented him with a pries…

St. Agnes of Rome, virgin and martyr

St. Agnes was born in Rome during the beginning of the third century. She was brought up as a Christian and grew to be a very beautiful young woman. By the age of twelve, Agnes was already receiving suitors for her hand in marriage. And already by the age of twelve, Agnes had developed a deep spirituality that directed her to devote her life to God as a consecrated virgin.

Several of the suitors who Agnes turned away became bitter at her and turned her in to the authorities as a Christian. The political atmosphere at the time was very charged, and the Diocletian persecution was well under way. Agnes was arrested and thrown into a house of prostitution to await her death. All who came to look lustfully upon Agnes lost their sight, but many had their sight restored by her intercessory prayers. At last Agnes was sentenced to death. Her body was taken away and buried in a catacomb that later came to bear her name.

Under the reign of the Emperor Constantine, a basilica was built in her ho…

Cardinal-designate Timothy Dolan speaks out against HHS mandate on Contraception

Archbishop Timothy Dolan on HHS Conscience Regulation from Rocco Palmo on Vimeo.

Via the USCCB website:

WASHINGTON—Cardinal-designate Timothy Dolan of New York, president of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB), sharply criticized the decision by the Obama administration in which it “ordered almost every employer and insurer in the country to provide sterilization and contraceptives, including some abortion-inducing drugs, in their health plans.” He made the statement in a web video posted at: . .

“Never before has the federal government forced individuals and organizations to go out into the marketplace and buy a product that violates their conscience. This shouldn’t happen in a land where free exercise of religion ranks first in the Bill of Rights,” Cardinal-designate Dolan said.

On January 20, Kathleen Sebelius, secretary of the Health and Human Services, announced that non-profit employers will have one year to comply with the new rule.


AUL's Life List: Where does your state rank?

Click here to find out.

Obama Administration Decides to Force Religious Institutions to Cover Contraception

Today  the Obama administration refused to change a controversial rule that would require religious institutions, in violation of their conscience, to pay for contraceptive drugs—including those that could cause an abortion. Instead, the administration merely delayed the effective date of the rule by one year.

The rule is currently subject to two lawsuits filed by The Becket Fund for Religious Liberty—one on behalf of Belmont Abbey College in North Carolina, and one on behalf of Colorado Christian University.

“This is a shameless attempt to kick the can down the road in an election year,” says Hannah Smith, Senior Legal Counsel for The Becket Fund. “Religious colleges, universities, and hospitals will never pay for abortion drugs in violation of their religious beliefs–this year or any other year.”

The announcement comes just one week after the Supreme Court’s decision in EEOC v. Hosanna-Tabor, a landmark case involving the right of churches to select their religious leaders. In that…

St. Fabian, Pope and Martyr

Today is the optional memorial of St. Fabian, pope (236-250) and martyr.

Eusebius, born just a few years after Fabian's death, tells us how Fabian came to Rome after Pope Anteros died in 236. A layperson, and not a very important one, he may have come for the same reason many still come to Rome today during a papal election: concern for the future of the faith, curiosity about the new pope, a desire to grieve for the pope who had passed. Seeing all the important people gathered to make this momentous decision must have been overwhelming. Which one would be the new pope? Someone known for power? Someone known for eloquence? Someone known for courage?

Suddenly during the discussion, a dove descended from the ceiling. But it didn't settle on "someone known" for anything at all. The dove, according to Eusebius, "settled on [Fabian's] head as clear imitation of the descent of the Holy Spirit in the form of a dove upon the Savior." There must have been somet…

Pope expresses concern over hostility toward Christianity in US

January 19, 2012. ( A group of American bishops met with Benedict XVI during their Ad limina visit to Rome. Cardinal Donald Wuerl of Washington DC spoke on behalf of the bishops and thanked the pope for the meeting.

Benedict XVI expressed his concern over the hostility against Judeo-Christian tradition and “Christianity as such”. He said it's “imperative that the entire Catholic community in the United States come to realize the grave threats to the Church’s public moral witness presented by a radical secularism which finds increasing expression in the political and cultural spheres”.

Benedict XVI
“When a culture attempts to suppress the dimension of ultimate mystery, and to close the doors to transcendent truth, it inevitably becomes impoverished and falls prey.”

The pope also applauded their “efforts to maintain contacts with Catholics involved in political life,” adding that Catholic politicians needed to respect the values of respect for life, human dignity, an…

Steven Tyler's Ex-Fiancée to Talk About Her Abortion at March for Life

Julia Holcomb was forced to reveal a secret she had been keeping for 35 years after her son came across one of the unflattering -- and untrue -- statements that Aerosmith singer Steven Tyler had written about her, their relationship, and their abortion.

"I had to become Silent No More right in my own home, I had no choice," said Ms. Holcomb, whose life hit a low point in 1975, when she nearly died in an apartment fire and was then convinced to abort her baby at five months.

Now Ms. Holcomb is a spokeswoman for the Silent No More Awareness Campaign by choice.

On Monday, Jan. 23, in front of the U.S. Supreme Court building, she will publicly share the story of her abortion and how it was the catalyst that prompted her to turn her life around. She is a married mother of six sons, a devout Roman Catholic and a pro-life activist.

Ms. Holcomb will join dozens of other women and men from the campaign who will tell their stories at the annual event that immediately follows the Marc…

Saint Joseph Sebastian Pelczar

Today is the feast of Saint Joseph Sebastian Pelczar 1842-1924), Bishop of Przemyśl and founder of the Congregation of the Handmaids of the Sacred Heart of Jesus.

Joseph Sebastian Pelczar was born on January 17, 1842, in the small town of Korczyna in southwestern Poland, where he was raised by pious parents. He decided to devote himself to the service of God as a young student. In his diary he wrote: “Earthly ideals are fading away. I see the ideal of life in sacrifice, and the ideal of sacrifice in priesthood.”

Ordained a priest on July 17, 1864, Joseph Sebastian was sent to Sambor, to a parish in the Diocese of Przemysl, where he worked for a year and a half as a curate. He was then sent to Rome to study and spent two years there. Having earned doctorates in theology and canon law, he returned to Poland and, after a short period of service as curate in Wojutycze and Sambor, he became a professor of the Major Seminary of Przemysl (1869-1877). Later, he was appointed as professor of…

Pro-life Quote of the Day: Newt Gingrich

"I would like to defund Planned Parenthood…."

"I want to take all of that money and put it directly into adoption services to give young women the choice of life, not the culture of death."

~ GOP presidential hopeful Newt Gingrich, commenting at the Faith and Freedom Coalition’s presidential forum in South Carolina, as quoted by Newsbusters via CNSNews, January 18

H/T: Jill Stanek

Funny: Baby "Tebowing" on Ultrasound


Reader's Choice Awards Now Open

The 2011 Catholicism Readers’ Choice Awards have opened up for nominations.

May Catholic Fire ask for your support?

Thank you!   God bless you!

Second Grader's Dream: Obama defeat, because "“He Says You Can Kills Babys”

Even small children understand the difference between right and wrong when it comes to abortion.

This is from Jill Stanek at LifeSite News.

I received the following from a second grade teacher:

The class has been learning about Martin Luther King, Jr., and we were talking about how one person can make a big difference. We talked about how he had a dream.

So they had a writing assignment to write about what their dream for the world right now is. This little boy wrote, “My dream for the world Is for president Obama to not be president ever again. Because he says you can kill babies. And because that is a dumb law.”

Read the entire article.

Fr. Barron comments on "Why I Hate Religion, But Love Jesus"

Fr. Barron comments on this controversial YouTube video.

Movie Review: Courageous

Alert: Contains Spoilers

I was not really sure how I would feel about Courageous. I had heard good things about it, but thought that it would be more appealing to men – fathers. How wrong I was. I viewed Courageous on blue ray this past week and loved it!

Courageous is an exciting, emotional, and entertaining movie, filled with action scenes, and interspersed with humor. It is the story of five men – four policemen and one Hispanic carpenter -- who realize they need to be better fathers and are determined to do something about it.

The film opens with African American Nathan Thompson pulling into a gas station and pumping gas into his truck. When he turns his back, a gang member steals it and drives off. Nathan catches up to him and a frantic battle for the truck ensues. Nathan latches onto the driver’s side on the truck, dangling from the moving vehicle, grabbing the steering wheel through the window, while fighting off the thief. When he finally regains control of his truck, we disco…

Best Films of 2011

Steven Greydanus shares his 10 best films of 2011.

Here are my top five favorites for 2011:

1. Of Gods and Men This compelling historical drama relates the ordeal of seven French Trappist monks in the mountains of Algeria who are taken captive by Islamic fundamentalists. Before the monks' abduction, they have ample reason to believe they may be in danger, but their assumption that there can and must be common ground between Islam and Christianity leads them to remain at the monastery. This is truly a masterpiece and a must-see movie. Teens and up.

2. War Horse  A friendship begins between a horse named Joey and a young man called Albert, who tames and trains him. When they are forcefully parted, the horse moves through the First World War, changing and inspiring the lives of all those he meets -- British cavalry, German soldiers, and a French farmer and his granddaughter. Bring a box of klennex. Teens and up.

3Jane EyreJane Eyre flees Thornfield House, where she works as a governes…