As another week comes to an end, this is your chance to top off your glass with a final helping of news, current events, and just plain interesting stuff that may not have made into the mainstream media. A chance to linger for a few more moments before we close the door on the week. Below are some links to articles, blogs, and miscellaneous happenings that caught my eye over the past few days. Sample what you like - I'll serve up more next Friday...
On the Indefectibility and Infallibility of the Church - "There are very few certainties in this world about anything. But one thing is for sure: The Church will prevail, the Church will be here to infallibly lead us to the end of days."
Hand Communion Causes Loss of Faith - "One takes ordinarily with one's fingers what one wants in a commonplace way. On the other hand, kneeling Communion on the tongue is a 'complete gesture of sacrality, which expresses the sublime.'"
The Importance of Vocation - "All work, not only that of priests and religious, can be holy when done as an act of love, service, and sacrifice according to the mind God."
Child sacrifice in 21st-century America - "...America is a country in which almost 1 in 4 pregnancies ends in the willful, violent death of the unborn child. And this slaughter of the innocents has been going on, often in higher percentages, for almost four decades."
A Thread for Weaving Joy [Archbishop Charles J. Chaput]- "Studies show that more than 80 percent of unborn babies diagnosed with Down syndrome now get terminated in the womb. They’re killed because of a flaw in one of their chromosomes – a flaw that’s neither fatal nor contagious, but merely undesirable."
“It’s a Girl!” Could be a Death Sentence in Canada - "'A pregnant woman being told the sex of the fetus at ultrasonography at a time when an unquestioned abortion is possible is the starting point of female feticide from a health care perspective,' writes Dr. Rajendra Kale."
Bene, bene, bene - "What do we call our children, beyond their literal names? What do we say to them? No matter how old they are, how often do we tell them that they are good, and it is well that they are here?"
Every American Catholic Must Fight for Religious Freedom - "There may well be no perfect candidate, but there will be those who pose a greater threat to our Catholic principles. Pope Benedict XVI has given us our priorities: the defense of human life from conception to natural death, the defense of the family and the defense of religious liberty."
Top Catholic bishop feels betrayed by Obama - "I had to share with him [Obama] that I was terribly let down, disappointed and disturbed..." - (Archbishop Dolan) [I don't mind saying: "I told you so." Why did the bishops put there confidence in a guy who supports abortion and the destruction of traditional family when he says that he's going to fix healthcare??? Don't you realize that his plan will include the evils that we oppose?? Why do Catholics support the Democratic Party??? You're just asking to get burned. The Republican Party is not perfect...]
Contraception mandate prompts Peoria bishop to instate St. Michael Prayer - "The move comes in response to a new federal requirement that will force many Catholic organizations to provide insurance coverage for sterilizations and contraceptives."
Pope Benedict, President Obama and religious freedom - "The bottom line, [Pope Benedict] said, is that America's once-strong political consensus has 'eroded significantly in the face of powerful new cultural currents which are not only directly opposed to core moral teachings of the Judeo-Christian tradition, but increasingly hostile to Christianity as such.'"
The Bell Is Tolling - "Without change, Catholic institutions will soon be legally required to provide services which violate a fundamental principle of our religious beliefs. If plans go unchanged, the Catholic Church, acting through our Catholic institutions, will no longer have legal protection for the free exercise of religion."
Forgotten religious relic rediscovered in New York - "The tapestry contains a calendar of 365 relics of the saints, one saint's relic for each day of the year. And in the center of the roughly 2-foot-by-3-foot tapestry are what are supposed to be the relics of the actual crucifixion of Jesus: a piece of the Crown of Thorns, the sponge used to dab his lips, and a sliver of the cross itself, all woven into the cloth."