Saturday, September 11, 2004
A Prayer to Christ Suffering with Us.
Lord Jesus Christ, we know that as Son of God, You left the unchanging light of eternity to come into our dark world. By Your coming as a helpless child, You brought the light of hope to the struggling human race. By Your holy life and Gospel You taught us the way to live and die so as to live again forever.
Though You were totally innocent, by Your death You saved us through Your loving acceptance of the Father's will that You be as vulnerable as we are to the effects of evil and the darkness of sin. No one can now claim that God does not know what it means to suffer pain and injustice. You tasted it all, right down to the bitter dregs. You saw Your Mother and Your friends overwhelmed with sorrow, grief, and confusion. You even asked, "Why?"
And then when You departed and returned to the heavens, You mysteriously remained with us till the end of the world. Not only are You present in the sacraments and the Scriptures but You tell us that You are there with the sick, the poor, the suffering, and even the imprisoned. You weep with those who weep, You grieve with those who grieve, You die again with those who die or are killed. And Your cross, a cross made holy by suffering love, is the sign of all these mysteries, of all that love. While our lips cannot speak or our minds fathom all this mysterious truth, one word the cross sums it all up.
Have mercy on all who suffer, and especially those who suffered in the present darkness and attack. We hope, O Jesus, that all who died were called by You to Your Divine Mercy at the moment of death. Deliver our whole world from war and civil strife. Give us the truth and a love for justice. Send Your Holy Spirit that we may speak up for life and truth. And at the end of our days bring us to Your Father’s house.
Lord Jesus Christ, place the sign of the cross on our troubled and suffering country, on the wounded human race stumbling along in blindness. Place the sign of the cross in the hearts of every one of us and let the light shining from the cross guide us on our way. Let all who come to You even in conflict and doubt, even in pain and bitterness, let them all know that Your cross is ultimately our only hope, the only sign of hope we need to guide us to eternal life, where we shall be together with You and the Father and the Holy Spirit. Amen.
From The Cross At Ground Zero, Fr. Benedict Groeschel, CFR, p.113
posted by Patrick Sweeney at 1:01 AM Permalink
Friday, September 10, 2004
Here were have another conflict where new media triumphs over old media.
The old media and especially television network news thought themselves to be the gatekeepers. In the 80's, before cable news and the internet they might have been.
You would think that NBC and ABC would jump at the chance to show a grievous error in judgment and now a cover-up over the documents authenticity and perhaps intentional falsehood.
But no -- they closed ranks and defended CBS. For them, the book was closed when CBS said "we stand by our story". The television networks have a shared stake in giving an illusion of objectivity.
New media, time and time again, doesn't have to reproduce what the AP and CBS are doing -- but what new media can do is be a real watchdog for the truth which is the function of a free press. They are self-deluded in thinking they have a monopoly something more significant than those old-fashioned megawatt antennae.
posted by Patrick Sweeney at 8:51 PM Permalink
Museum of Television: Recalling Dan Rather's conversation with George H.W. Bush
In September 1987 Dan Rather walked off the CBS Evening News set in protest over the network's decision to allow U.S. Open tennis coverage to cut into the broadcast.
Could Dan Rather be holding a grudge against the conservatives or George Bush because of this incident?
It's been years since I watched the news on CBS with Dan Rather.
Dan Rather became famous for being at the scene of the Kennedy assassination and insulting Nixon. Later he was part of a cabal at CBS News to forcibly retire Walter Cronkite at age 65 in 1981. Dan Rather himself turned 65 back in 1996.
posted by Patrick Sweeney at 7:31 PM Permalink
Catholic World News: Caucusus could be a "powder keg," archbishop warns
Tbilisi, Sep. 10 (FIDES/CWNews.com) - The papal nuncio in the former Soviet republic of Georgia has warned that the entire region of the Caucasus could become a "powder keg" because of the poverty and instability that are breeding grounds for terrorism, the Fides news service reports.The breeding ground of terrorism is evil. There are many places in the world with worse poverty and worse instability that South Ossetia which are not creating terrorists who would injure and kill children in the manner of the Beslan murderers.
Asking that the people who fled not be forgotten is suggesting a moral equivalence between the terrorists who killed and injured babies and the armies of Russian and Georgia. We heard the same "root cause" nonsense after 9/11.
posted by Patrick Sweeney at 6:14 PM Permalink
posted by Patrick Sweeney at 1:08 PM Permalink
Catholic X-Files (2) Hollister Free Lance: Researcher studies mysteries of the mission
San Juan Bautista - Unexplainable phenomena have been said to happen at thousands of churches throughout time, but in 2000, on an early December morning at San Juan Bautista Mission, even Ruben Mendoza, a man of science, was astonished.
posted by Patrick Sweeney at 10:57 AM Permalink
Catholic X-Files: "Frankly," she said, "I've never thought of California as Catholic."
Travel writer treats an encounter with the Catholic history of California as a visit to space aliens at Area 51.
It was inside Serra Chapel that my epiphany began.Cue the Twilight Zone music.
posted by Patrick Sweeney at 10:15 AM Permalink
Thursday, September 09, 2004
posted by Patrick Sweeney at 10:58 PM Permalink
George Weigel: Catholic = (Jesus + me)? Not exactly
The recent debate over the ecclesiastical status of pro-abortion Catholic politicians has sharpened several issues in U.S. Catholic life: the utility (or lack thereof) of "seamless garment" approaches to public policy questions; the roles of moral conviction and prudential judgment in legislating and voting; the bishops' responsibilities for the integrity of the sacraments. The list could be expanded further and much of it would be familiar; many of these issues have been debated before.
I'm always happy to link to George Weigel.
Catholics who dare risk their salvation by voting for Kerry may actually be Protestants -- and Vatican II proves it.
posted by Patrick Sweeney at 10:51 PM Permalink
Jimmy Akin of JimmyAkin.Org explains what Ratzinger said
James has a good article here. It's a problem that Cardinal Ratzinger expressed it in the scholastic framework: demonstrating that something is utterly impossible by posing it a question that if it had an answer it would be possible. But the question has no answer, ah ha! Then it must be impossible.A Catholic would be guilty of formal cooperation in evil, and so unworthy to present himself for Holy Communion, if he were to deliberately vote for a candidate precisely because of the candidate’s permissive stand on abortion and/or euthanasia. When a Catholic does not share a candidate’s stand in favor of abortion and/or euthanasia, but votes for that candidate for other reasons, it is considered remote material cooperation, which can be permitted in the presence of proportionate reasons.
I can imagine the young students of 13th century pre-reformation Oxford giving a "huzzah!" when this is explained to them.
The 21st century Catholic student merely goes "huh".
I'm no Marshall McLuhan, but in terms of literacy of people who need to hear this message proportionate reasons sounds like the motivation for a diet. This much I know.
Rather than helping, bishops, archbishops, and cardinals are falling into traps that set by National Catholic Reporter and the New York Times using the langauge of scholastic equivocation.
Simple Declative Sentences. More, faster, please.
posted by Patrick Sweeney at 10:27 PM Permalink
Hugh Hewitt has a good summary of the forged National Guard documents.
This has been discussed all over the net. My own input here is that the people who are talking about about proportional spacing typewriters being common enough to be in the hands of the Texas Air National Guard, you people are clueless.
What's really disturbing is that CBS either lied about having these documents authenticated, or for some unfathomable reason is choosing to shield an incompetent document expert.
It's an old temptation of hack journalism -- the story was too good to check.
My own quick points:
It is such an obvious forgery prepared from the default settings of Microsoft Word.
CBS is nuts to say that's our story and we're sticking to it
posted by Patrick Sweeney at 9:59 PM Permalink
Gay American Jim McGreevey is having second thoughts.
It has been four weeks since McGreevey made the stunning announcement that he was gay, carried on an extramarital affair with a former male employee and would step down on Nov. 15. But the disgraced governor has failed to file a formal letter of resignation and may be rethinking his resignation.
The change of heart refers to his political ambition and not his marriage vows.
I believe I was the only Catholic blogger to point out that McGreevey did not resign as governor of New Jersey but announced an intention to resign -- which is quite different. See, I told you so.
McGreevey never sent a letter to the Secretary of State of New Jersey to make official his resignation -- and now there are signals that he will never make his resignation offical. He believes he can ride out the storm to the end of his term in January 2006. Say... he could even run for re-election!
What's being litigated now is whether the announcement of the intent to resign created a vacancy in the constitutional sense and that this vacancy should be filled by holding an election as opposed to the automatic succession to the president of the state senate. (Discussed in The New York Times: Lawsuit Presses for November Ballot on McGreevey Successor )
No word on reconciliation with his second wife, first wife, daughter, or the Catholic Church.
posted by Patrick Sweeney at 1:18 PM Permalink
Wednesday, September 08, 2004
Putin doesn't have the options that President Bush has
The Russian army doesn't have the technology that United States has used with tremendous effect in Iraq. This technology not only kills the bad guys and blows their buildings up, it reduces the death and injury to our military and the non-combatants.
We have arrows, swords, and chariots. The Russians have big wooden clubs.
If Putin decided on creating his own version of "shock and awe" it will be a Russian form of it. A WMD attack on Chechen population centers. What will the Chechen terrorists do in response? Kill hundreds of Russian children?
There's an internal political necessity for Putin to strike soon and hard.
The irony is that through greed and corruption, the terorrists have been armed by Russians themselves.
posted by Patrick Sweeney at 10:35 PM Permalink
2004 Catholic Voting Guide
The problem is that the 2004 Catholic Voting Guide contains characterization of the positions of the candidates which have inherent bias. Only the candidates themselves are the source of their positions along with their recorded votes.
The 2004 Catholic Voting Guide is an textbook case of spin -- a little truth, a little distortion, ommissions and a change in emphasis. As a Bush supporter I see the bias aganist Bush and for Kerry. I'm sure a Kerry supporter would see some evidence of bias in the opposite direction.
A Catholic Voters Guide should explain Catholic teaching and leave the characterization of the candidates positions to the candidates themselves, the political media, and, of course, the voters themselves . <
posted by Patrick Sweeney at 10:07 PM Permalink
Not so fast there, Mr Scotsman
Mr Kerry’s Catholicism has helped make him favourite with Arizona’s large Hispanic population and thereby the state as a wholeThe Kerry Spot on National Review Online (not a perma link) has an update
A new Arizona Republic survey of 600 likely voters found that if the election were held now, Bush would sweep Democratic Sen. John Kerry by 54-38 percent. Only 7 percent of those surveyed said they were still undecided. More than one in five Democrats interviewed said they intended to vote for Bush. The poll had a margin of error of plus or minus 4.0 percentage points.
posted by Patrick Sweeney at 9:57 PM Permalink
Johnny Cash reenacted the Last Supper -- crude imitation of the Catholic Mass
Country legend Johnny Cash spent the final months of his life practising bizarre Christian rituals with eccentric music producer Rick Rubin.
posted by Patrick Sweeney at 9:47 PM Permalink
Catholic World News: Pope opposes military response to terrorism
Milan, Sep. 08 (CWNews.com) - At a major international conference in Milan this week, two prominent Vatican officials have acknowledged the need for a military campaign to eliminate terrorism. But Pope John Paul II (bio - news) is not ready to endorse a military response.
My short reply at the Catholic World News site:
"Peace is always possible" only when there's a possiblity of the war ending on terms acceptable to the victor. Peace in the mind of the Islamofascists is rule of the world under Islam guided by a new Mahdi -- not merely Palestine.
I have a lot more to say. I love the Pope. I love the idea of "outlawing war".
"Peace is always possible" is only possible when the aggressor wants peace. Poland in 1939 had peace. France in 1940 had peace. The Jews of Poland and the Jews of France did not have peace.
We are not the Poles of Poland nor the French of France with whom Hitler sought a surrender. We are the Jews in the minds of this enemy -- because we are not Muslims obedient to the emergent Mahdi, a successor to Mohammed and Muhammad ibn Abd al-Wahab -- fervently desiring to go back to the 3rd century AH/10th century AD -- an Islamist utopia.
Some of my friends and perhaps the Pope as well now believes there is a table somewhere around which we can sit down and negotiate our differences and leave that table in peace and in dignity. No. They want to kill us. We recoil in disbelief that people can be and are so evil.
The Vatican has not disbanded the Swiss Guard. The Vatican has not removed all the locks from all its doors. Yet the evil acts that these prevent or deter are "outlawed". It is the reality of the there being a Swiss Guard and locked doors -- and not the mere declaration of it being outlawed -- that allows the Vatican to be at peace.
Our peace is protected by armed force -- man and women willing to kill the enemy and willing to die to for us. God bless them. We need them.
posted by Patrick Sweeney at 8:27 PM Permalink
Catholic League: Democrats Give Up on Religious Outreach
Catholic League president William Donohue commented today on the decision by the Democratic National Committee (DNC) to quit its religious outreach program:And I had thought the Catholic vote was important to the Kerry campaign."On August 2, the Catholic League exposed Rev. Brenda Bartella Peterson, the DNC’s first-ever Senior Advisor for Religious Outreach, as someone who had signed on to an amicus brief supporting atheist Michael Newdow in his attempt to excise the words 'under God' in the Pledge of Allegiance.
posted by Patrick Sweeney at 8:20 PM Permalink
Fox News: Ann Coulter triumphs on Hannity and Colmes
Richard Aborn a Democratic Strategist was a deer caught in the headlights -- whenever a question was posed "Let's talk about the issues!".
"Iraq. What's John Kerry's policy for Iraq?"
"...sit down with allies..."
"You mean a permission slip from France?"
"Terror. How will Kerry defend this nation against terror?"
"...strengthening our defenses..."
"...increasing the number of police..."
"Back to the Clinton approach of treating this as a law enforcement problem."
posted by Patrick Sweeney at 9:26 AM Permalink
Tuesday, September 07, 2004
CNN: The Timeline of Russian terror attacks
Real strength, not merely the appearance of strength
Rock concerts, a goverment assembly, 2 aircraft in one minute -- and now hundreds of children...
There is a long list of unanswered attacks on Russians by Putin's government.
Putin is going to have to fight more than internal battles of these ex-communist cronies. He's going to get some resources mobilized and take the initative back from the terrorists or patriotic Russians will take him out.
What irony that a free United States with dedicated professionals in Homeland Security, the FBI, and the CIA, as well as local police departments -- in spite of basically open borders -- have prevented another terrorist attack, while the near police state known as Russia is suffering from hundreds of deaths now.
posted by Patrick Sweeney at 11:09 PM Permalink
A future case study in episcopal mis-communication
St Louis Dispatch: Burke clarifies voting stance (or is it Burke reverses voting stance?)
...a Catholic who personally opposes abortion rights, votes for a candidate who supports abortion rights "for what are called proportionate reasons," he said....
Is this plain language Catholic teaching or a graduate seminar on scholastic rhetoric?
To ask the question "That's the question that has to be answered in your conscience. What is the proportionate reason?" is to say "The answer is there in your conscience -- Now go and look for it."
There has not been, not now, nor will there ever be a proportionate reason to take innocent, defenseless human life. Suggesting in this quasi-academic way is a poor way to teach.
As if to prove my point The New York Times runs this the opposite of what Archbishop Burke said (I think):
The archbishop of St. Louis ... now says Roman Catholics may vote for such candidates under certain circumstances.
It was Yogi Berra who said "I made a wrong mistake"
posted by Patrick Sweeney at 10:41 PM Permalink
Dawn Eden: The New York Times Fingers Judeo-Christians in Beslan Deaths
I know that's a strong headline, but imagine you're a person who only gets his or her news from the New York Times. For many people, that isn't much of a stretch.
posted by Patrick Sweeney at 10:31 PM Permalink
Opinion Journal: Bush Will Bury Kerry
The Democrat will be lucky to exceed Michael Dukakis's share of the popular vote.
Now don't get over-confident on this -- we've still have an election to win.
posted by Patrick Sweeney at 10:25 PM Permalink
MEMRI: Beslan Seen Through Muslim Eyes
The attack on a school in Ossetia, Russia in early September 2004 which killed hundreds of people, many among them children, brought on a flurry of reactions in the Arab and Muslim media.
Blaming Jews and Zionists.
posted by Patrick Sweeney at 10:15 PM Permalink
The man with a pen can rob you as well as the man with a gun.
A man who admitted using a copy of a stamp with Cardinal William Keeler's signature on it to steal $443,000 in church donations was sentenced to four years in prison Tuesday.
posted by Patrick Sweeney at 9:10 PM Permalink
Newsday: Coulter brings invective to life. James P. Pinkerton
Is Ann Coulter the ideal spokeswoman for the Right to Life movement? The anti-abortion forces think so. But her prominence points up some of the paradoxes, as well as the strengths, of the pro-life crusade.
And yes I do own the Ann Coulter action figure.
posted by Patrick Sweeney at 8:16 PM Permalink
NRO: Beslan has changed Russia
I would add to this excellent article that now would be a good time for Putin to commit troops to anti-terrorist efforts in Iraq. Better late than never.
posted by Patrick Sweeney at 1:00 PM Permalink
LA Times: Heinz Kerry Criticized Christian Right in Speech
In a 1994 talk, nominee's wife said the group 'broadcasts its hatred.' Kerry camp stands behind the comments.
Another case study in liberal intolerance in the name of tolerance.
posted by Patrick Sweeney at 8:50 AM Permalink
Newsday: So, who is the real Rudy?
As former Mayor Rudy Giuliani basked in a sea of national goodwill at the GOP convention as a hero of Sept. 11, some New Yorkers who tangled with the former mayor over civil-rights issues had memories of a different Giuliani legacy.Some analysis of the mixed emotions that people have about Rudy from the left to match the mixed emotions that people like me have about him from the right.
posted by Patrick Sweeney at 8:41 AM Permalink
Monday, September 06, 2004
Newsday: Arrest in church burglary
A Westbury man, 19, was arrested and charged with third-degree burglary on Aug. 2 for allegedly stealing from St. Brigid's R.C. Church. The defendant was recorded on a video surveillance camera unlocking a church collections cabinet, separating cash from the checks, and taking cash on July 5 at 1:30 a.m., July 26 at 1 a.m. and again on Aug. 2 at 1:30 a.m., according to police records.
posted by Patrick Sweeney at 10:55 PM Permalink
AP: Hurricane Frances Looting Report
...In Brevard County, two men were charged with looting after trying to break into the Ascension Catholic Church in Melbourne.
posted by Patrick Sweeney at 10:51 PM Permalink
Media Bias Watch
I've been listening to some radio while trying to enjoy the weekend.
At each news break, Kerry speaks first. He poses a challenge to the Bush administration. The sound bite from President Bush, of course, is what the President said in the last 12 to 24 hours. It's strucutured to make it seem as if Bush is avoiding the issues Kerry is raising.
For example, Kerry mentions unemployment -- now lower when Clinton and other Democrats ran for re-election. Now that 5.4 percent rate is unacceptable -- yet it's lower than the average unemployment rate for the 1970's, 1980's, and 1990's.
And if statistics don't work -- the appeal to annecdotes works -- I've spoken to thousands of out of work Americans...
The sound bite to match that is the one when Bush has said that he has spoken to thousands of hopeful and optimistic Americans.
No one has been elected with a campaign based on misery.
posted by Patrick Sweeney at 9:49 PM Permalink
1010 WINS: Teen Killed By Car While Fleeing Police
17-year-old boy died after being struck by two cars while he fled police at the Jersey Shore [Sea Isle City, N.J.] over the Labor Day weekend, authorities said.
posted by Patrick Sweeney at 7:37 PM Permalink
Fox News: Critics: Priest Up for Sainthood a Sinner (with video)
The pope has called him the apostle of California and he's being considered for sainthood, but if some teachers and Native American activists have their way, Father Junipero Serra will be remembered more as a sinner than a saint...
Heating up again. I'll pass this anti-Catholic item onto my friends at the Catholic League
posted by Patrick Sweeney at 6:18 PM Permalink
New York Times: Giuliani Honor Draws Anti-Abortion Fire
That would be the former mayor of New York, Rudolph W. Giuliani, an abortion rights supporter, whose name will grace a new $25 million trauma center at St. Vincent's Hospital Manhattan. Ground was broken last week.
What's next? The Margaret Higgins Sanger Obstetric Center?
UPDATE: My comment from Amy Welborn's blog:
It's one thing for a New Yorker like Pat Sweeney or an ex-New Yorker like Rod Dreher to honor former Mayor Rudolph W. Giuliani.
posted by Patrick Sweeney at 5:05 PM Permalink
Michelle Malkin: Keep those Republicans out of the churches!
Over the past two months, The New York Times has hammered Republicans for including conservative Christians in the American electoral process: [examples]
posted by Patrick Sweeney at 2:30 PM Permalink
Searching for a cause for congential Cerebral Palsy
Justice Grove wrote, "As a matter of hindsight, considerable suspicion must be directed to the very recent termination which [mother Sharon] Chevelle underwent just prior to becoming pregnant with the plaintiff."Blogger Credit: Touchstone
posted by Patrick Sweeney at 11:04 AM Permalink
Sunday, September 05, 2004
Massacre in Beslan
(1) The mainstream media with the New York Times at the top of this list are refusing to call them Islamic terrorists preferring to given them labels which mask the fact they are Muslims and are using terror -- this is not merely a "crime" or a military "attack". What's motivating the avoidance of the "T" word? That it will help get Bush re-elected.
(2) An attack like this shows that Putin obtained nothing for appeasing Islamist terrorists by not supporting the US coalition in Iraq. Russia learned that you are either with us or against us in this war.
(3) As Steve and others on WABC have pointed out. This sort of terrorist attack targeting children is common in Israel.
posted by Patrick Sweeney at 11:08 PM Permalink
A long descriptive list of current national "third" political parties in the United States.
posted by Patrick Sweeney at 1:12 AM Permalink
Washington Times: GOP seeks faithful Catholic vote
Several hundred Catholic Republicans meeting on the last day of the party convention here were presented with a strategy on how to persuade Catholic friends to switch their support from Democratic presidential nominee and fellow Catholic Sen. John Kerry to President Bush.More coverage of Thursday's meeting.
posted by Patrick Sweeney at 1:11 AM Permalink