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...
The HHS Mandate: Is it a Religious Liberty Issue? - "The more fundamental problem with the HHS mandate, therefore, is the immorality of the acts themselves in which religious organizations are being 'required' to cooperate."
Congressman Gowdy Grills Secretary Sebelius on HHS Mandate - You MUST watch this video! The Congressman NAILS IT!""
8 Reasons Catholics are the Worst Protesters - "In this upcoming election, the bishops have called on Catholics to protest the Obama administration's efforts to curtail religious liberty... But there are some major problems facing Catholics, namely that Catholics are the worst protesters in the world."
Hey Bishops:Offer to fund NFP for Mandate! - [No here is an interesting idea.]
Congressman Ryan on Being Guided by Catholic Social Teaching - [Great analysis by Msgr. Pope]
Pushing back the limits of subsidiarity - "Where are health care costs low? Laser eye surgery, plastic surgery, etc. Those services that are not usually covered by insurance. In those cases, people shop around for the best and most cost-effective doctors like they shop around for the best and most cost-effective car mechanics."
Of Rosa DeLauro and Other Disoriented Catholics - "The impending fiscal meltdown of European welfare states vindicates subsidiarity by making clear that providing necessary aid to those in genuine need means, among other measures, developing the associational and charitable instincts of civil society. The alternative is state bankruptcy and social chaos."
Can Business Save Your Soul? - "For everybody, holiness is found in doing ordinary daily tasks with an awareness of their importance to our God, and with Gratitude to him. If we try to perform everyday things in a way that will please and honor him, we follow his law and fulfill his even higher expectations."
The Most Pressing Issue in Global Christianity - "Of all instances of religious persecution in the world, 80% are direct against Christians."
Killing the Geniuses - [These numbers are staggering!!] "Conservatively....about 2.5 billion lives have been eliminated from earthly existence by chemical abortion. When the dust settles, and we add at least another 50 million surgically-aborted souls each year worldwide, one gets 1.2 trillion total deaths over the last twenty-four years. That’s over 1 TRILLION souls that had their mortal lives extinguished."
Eliminating The Competition - "...in America today, our government looks on churches and other non-profit organizations not as a dependable front line in the war on poverty, racism, and social injustice, but as a competitor..."
Feds regulate farm chores for kids - "As one farmer described the new regulations, the biggest 'blow is not teaching our kids the values of working on a farm. Losing that work-ethic – it’s so hard to pick this up later in life.'"
Gay Marriage, Incest, and Polygamy - "One of the most often-mocked arguments in the debate over 'gay marriage' is the argument that permitting gay marriage leads to permitting incestuous marriages, polygamy, and the like. The problem is, the argument is solid, and I've yet to hear a coherent answer for it ."
Secularism in America: Growing American movement raises concerns - "A survey released in 2009 by the Pew Research Center found that a quarter of Americans between the ages of 18 and 29 surveyed said they were atheists, agnostics or had no religion."
Tithing on Social Media - "We could add a tithing element to our Facebook status updates and tweets on Twitter, giving 10 percent to the Lord. That means one-in-ten status updates or tweets could be related to God, spirituality, inspiration, prayer, or a link to something church-related."
Why is "Christian" Music so Awful? - "A friend of mine used to quip, 'When you’re talking about Christian music it’s pretty safe to substitute "bad" for "Christian".'"
Music for Private Devotion, Not Liturgy - [This link includes a video of GOOD Christian music.]
3 Basic Biblical Questions About the Sacrament of Confirmation - "All Seven Sacrament of the Catholic Church can be seen in Holy Scripture, but often times the biblical origin of the the Sacrament of Confirmation is missed. "
A Catholic Responds – Five Common Protestant Objections to the Sacrament of Confession - "...in my experience, the Sacrament of Reconciliation ranks right up there with Marian Dogmas among the Church’s teachings that prompt the most questions from those inquiring about the Catholic Faith. The following objections to the doctrine are those about which I am most often asked to respond."
Speaking of Christ: 10 True and False Propositions from Aquinas - "Do you know how to speak about Christ? How to use the exact words so as to avoid anything that could logically lead to — heresy?"
Book Arts: Modern Illuminators and Potentialities for Liturgical Books Today - [Proof that artistry can still be found in the written word.]
Miss America Contestant Told Not to Mention Pro-Life Views - "[Maria] Cahil is a prime example of someone who recognizes that beauty is not only seen in a beauty contest but in the wonderful and awesome development of human life before birth and she is willing to stand up to the powers that be to proclaim that truth."
Sympathy for the Devil and Mercy for the Damned - [Interesting and imaginative piece that explores the Final Judgement.]