“The picture on this page is an untouched photograph of a being that has been within its mother for 20 weeks. Please do me the favor of looking at it carefully.” Cardinal Egan
Click on the the Bishop’s last name to go to their statement.
35. Bishop Ronald Gilmore of Dodge City, KS
36. Bishop Paul Coakley of Salina, KS
37. Bishop Michael Jackels of Wichita
38. Bishop Gerald M. Barbarito of Palm Beach
39. Bishop Kevin W. Vann of Fort Worth
75. Joint Statement by the bishops of Florida (9 bishops)
One of Matteo Perez d’Aleccio’s fresco’s depicting the Great Siege. The frescos started being painted eleven years after the siege and although Matteo Perez d’Aleccio himself was not a witness to the event he relied heavily on Francisco Balbi di Corregio’s account of the Great Siege and on surviving Knights, including the Grand Master who surely furnished the artist with more information. They are on display in the Palace of the Grand Master in Malta
Father Corapi has been asking Catholics to pray a rosary novena to Our Lady of Victory for the election, click here to see our post on this novena.
Today I received an email from Dan Engler with a letter from Luis Mendoza encouraging others to pray this Novena for the election. He gave a personal testimony about how powerful this novena is and what happened after he and his wife and a small group prayed it:
Dear Pro-Life Friends,
I have attached Father Corapi’s letter explaining the importance of our uniting in prayer for a “Moral” outcome to this election.
This is an effective novena. My wife and I plus a small group prayed this Novena for Justice to be done in regards to Bertha Bugarin the owner of the CLINICA MEDICA abortion mill chain. On the final day of the the novena Bertha was arrested in a Los Angeles courtroom , brought to San Diego in shakles and paraded before the local television stations. And the most notorious abortion mill chain in California was eliminated…
Yours in Christ through Mary
Here are links and pictures that detail this story:
Unlicensed Abortionist Bertha Bugarin Arrested And Jailed After Botched Abortion Victims Come Forward
Fernando Bertelli: Battle of Lepanto (1571), Venedig 1572
The Holy League was outfitted with around 208 galleys; while the Turks had nearly 300. Click here to find out more about the Battle of Lepanto which the Christians won despite the odds against them.
I believe that millions are praying fervently for this elections. My hope for this election is in God and with this in mind I would like to make everyone aware of a Novena to Our Lady of Victory that Father Corapi is promoting. Click here to read his entire text. (It is a flyer from Father Corapi’s website that can be handed out to promote this Novena.) Below is Father Corapi’s explanation of this feast day and it’s significance for our times.
“Among the most important titles we have in the Catholic Church for the Blessed Virgin Mary are Our Lady of Victory and Our Lady of the Rosary. These titles can be traced back to one of the most decisive times in the history of the world and Christendom. The Battle of Lepanto took place on October 7 (date of feast of Our Lady of Rosary), 1571. This proved to be the most crucial battle for the Christian forces against the radical Muslim navy of Turkey. Pope Pius V led a procession around St. Peter’s Square in Vatican City praying the Rosary. He showed true pastoral leadership in recognizing the danger posed to Christendom by the radical Muslim forces, and in using the means necessary to defeat it. Spiritual battles require spiritual weapons, and this more than anything was a battle that had its origins in the spiritual order—a true battle between good and evil.
Today we have a similar spiritual battle in progress—a battle between the forces of good and evil, light and darkness, truth and lies, life and death. If we do not soon stop the genocide of abortion in the United States, we shall run the course of all those that prove by their actions that they are enemies of God—total collapse, economic, social, and national. The moral demise of a nation results in the ultimate demise of a nation. God is not a disinterested spectator to the affairs of man. Life begins at conception. This is an unalterable formal teaching of the Catholic Church. If you do not accept this you are a heretic in plain English. A single abortion is homicide. The more than 48,000,000 abortions since Roe v. Wade in the United States constitute genocide by definition. The group singled out for death—unwanted, unborn children
No other issue, not all other issues taken together, can constitute a proportionate reason for voting for candidates that intend to preserve and defend this holocaust of innocent human life that is abortion.”
With this in mind, Father Corapi is calling on Catholics to pray a Rosary Novena for the nine days preceding the election (October 27 to November 4th) to Our Lady of Victory and Our Lady of the Rosary.
Solemn Novena to Our Lady of Victory, Click here.
El Greco Christ Driving the Traders from the Temple. The episode is described in all four Gospels: St. Matthew (21:12-13), St. Mark (11:15-18), St. Luke (19:45-46), St. John (2:14-17).
There is a scene in the Gospel, one of the most vivid scenes, one that probably scandalized many of the religious and secular leaders but was secretly loved by all of the little ones of the flock. I’m speaking about when Christ went into the Temple and overturned the money changers driving them from the Temple.
Bishop Martino of Scranton did just that last Sunday. He went into one of those Church forums that many of us detest so much where questions of faith and morals are debated. Often at parish events like this Catholics leave not altogether sure what the Church is teaching. At this particular forum some panel members were trying to make the case for it being OK as a Catholic to vote for the most pro-abortion presidential candidate in the history of our country.
And then Bishop Martino overturned their applecart.
“No social issue has caused the death of 50 million people,” he said, noting that he no longer supports the Democratic Party.* “This is madness people.” Bishop Martino also said that he had wanted to persuade Father Martin Boylan, of St. John’s, to cancel the forum.
After his comments, most of the audience stood and clapped loudly.
The forum had handed out literature from the USCCB that was ambiguous.
Here is what Bishop Martino had to say about that:
“No USCCB document is relevant in this diocese,” said Bishop Martino. “The USCCB doesn’t speak for me.” “The only relevant document … is my letter,” he said. “There is one teacher in this diocese, and these points are not debatable.” Click here to read his letter.
Some people might take issue with that statement but he is correct. In 1998 Pope John Paul II issued an : APOSTOLIC LETTER “MOTU PROPRIO” APOSTOLOS SUOS, ON THE THEOLOGICAL AND JURIDICAL NATURE OF EPISCOPAL CONFERENCES (1) 21 May, 1998 Here follows an excerpt:
20. In the Episcopal Conference the Bishops jointly exercise the episcopal ministry for the good of the faithful of the territory of the Conference; but, for that exercise to be legitimate and binding on the individual Bishops, there is needed the intervention of the supreme authority of the Church which, through universal law or particular mandates, entrusts determined questions to the deliberation of the Episcopal Conference. Bishops, whether individually or united in Conference, cannot autonomously limit their own sacred power in favour of the Episcopal Conference, and even less can they do so in favour of one of its parts, whether the permanent council or a commission or the president. This logic is quite explicit in the canonical norm concerning the exercise of the legislative power of the Bishops assembled in the Episcopal Conference: “The Conference of Bishops can issue general decrees only in those cases in which the common law prescribes it, or a special mandate of the Apostolic See, given either motu proprio or at the request of the Conference, determines it”. (77) In other cases “the competence of individual diocesan Bishops remains intact; and neither the Conference nor its president may act in the name of all the Bishops unless each and every Bishop has given his consent”. (78)
*I imagine this is the reason that Bishop Martino no longer supports the Democratic Party. From the 2008 Democratic Party Platform: “The Democratic Party stronly and unequivocally supports Roe v. Wade and a woman’s right to choose a safe and legal abortion, regardless of ability to pay, and we oppose any and all efforts to weaken or undermine that right.”
This year the Catholic Bishops have really stepped up to the plate. First, around 50 Bishops across the U.S. came out and soundly corrected Nancy Pelosi and Joe Biden when these two ‘Catholic’ politicians deliberately distorted the Catholic position on abortion earlier this year.
During Respect LIfe month this year many Bishops around the country are clearly speaking to Catholics about their voting choices this November. What they are pointing out is that abortion should be the most important issue as Catholics step into the voting booth.
Here are quotes from some of these Bishops – If you click on the Bishop’s name it will bring you to the entire statement.
From: Little Murders by Archbishop Charles J. Chaput, October 18, 2008.
“I believe that Senator Obama, whatever his other talents, is the most committed ”abortion-rights” presidential candidate of either major party since the Roe v. Wade abortion decision in 1973. Despite what Prof. Kmiec suggests, the party platform Senator Obama runs on this year is not only aggressively ”pro-choice;” it has also removed any suggestion that killing an unborn child might be a regrettable thing. On the question of homicide against the unborn child – and let’s remember that the great Lutheran pastor Dietrich Bonhoeffer explicitly called abortion ”murder” – the Democratic platform that emerged from Denver in August 2008 is clearly anti-life.”
“I Thought You Should Know” By Bishop Robert J. Hermann Archdiocesan Administrator St. Louis Diocese (he took over for Archbishop Burke who was given an appointment in Rome this year.)
“The decision I make in the voting booth will reflect my value system. If I value the good of the economy and my current lifestyle more than I do the right to life itself, then I am in trouble. Pope John Paul II, in his Post-synodal Apostolic Exhortation Christifideles Laici tells us: ‘Above all, the common outcry, which is justly made on behalf of human rights – for example, the right to health, to home, to work, to family, to culture – is false and illusory if the right to life, the most basic and fundamental right and the condition for all other personal rights, is not defended with maximum determination….’ ”
Joint Statement from Bishop Kevin Farrell and Bishop Kevin Vann to the Faithful of the Dioceses of Dallas and Fort Worth
“Therefore, we cannot make more clear the seriousness of the overriding issue of abortion – while not the “only issue” – it is the defining moral issue, not only today, but of the last 35 years. Since the Roe v. Wade decision in 1973, more than 48 million innocent lives have been lost. Each year in our nation more than one million lives are lost through legalized abortion. Countless other lives are also lost through embryonic stem cell research. In the coming months our nation will once again elect our political leaders. This electoral cycle affords us an opportunity to promote the culture of life in our nation. As Catholics we are morally obligated to pray, to act, and to vote to abolish the evil of abortion in America, limiting it as much as we can until it is finally abolished.”
Bishop Holley Calls on Black Community to Overcome Abortion
“As an African American, I am saddened by evidence that Black women continue to be targeted by the abortion industry. The loss of any child from abortion is a tragedy, but we must ask: Why are minority children being aborted at such disproportionate rates?
Many African Americans are not aware that since the Roe v. Wade decision legalized abortion throughout all 9 months of pregnancy, the number one cause of death in the African American community has been abortion. We have lost over 13 million lives. To put that in perspective, it is one third of our present Black population. Since 1973, twice as many Black Americans have died from abortion than from AIDS, accidents, violent crimes, cancer, and heart disease combined.
As I noted in my recent Respect Life Program article, ‘A Reflection on the African American Family and the Culture of Life‘ (www.usccb.org/prolife/programs/rlp/holley.pdf), our legitimate commitment to other social concerns must not push the primary moral issue of abortion onto the back burner. It clearly must be at the heart and center of our discussion of the survival of African American people.”
“Abortion is the issue this year and every year in every campaign. Catholics may not turn away from the moral challenge that abortion poses for those who seek to obey God’s commands. They are wrong when they assert that abortion does not concern them, or that it is only one of a multitude of issues of equal importance. No, the taking of innocent human life is so heinous, so horribly evil, and so absolutely opposite to the law of Almighty God that abortion must take precedence over every other issue. I repeat. It is the single most important issue confronting not only Catholics, but the entire electorate.”
From: Bishop Robert W. Finn, Diocese of Kansas City, St. Joseph Can a Catholic Vote in Support of Abortion? Oct. 17, 2008.
“When a candidate regards the unborn child as unworthy of the defense of law, then he or she asks us to join them in ignoring the lessons of history by which African Americans in this country were once regarded as non-persons; or the Jews of Europe were once marked for genocide or racial purification. Had we known, would we have supported the “choice” to enslave or destroy these brothers and sisters of ours? Can a candidate expect us as Catholics to ignore the classification of the unborn as non-persons? Will he or she expect us to look aside while these babies are quietly exterminated at a rate of 4000 per day? This is precisely what they are asking us to do.“
Filed under: Pro-life
Click here to see a great MSNBC video entitled
Palin Strikes a Chord with Special Needs Families
On a more personal level here is a very moving account I found on Creative Minority Report. Evidently, one of their long time readers sent the video, letter and photographs about her own experience with Sarah Palin at a rally. It is really worth viewing and reading.
Hi Matthew and Patrick,
I read your blog every day, and have loved your posts on the election and everything else. I comment every once in a while, and thought I’d email in my story of meeting Sarah Palin yesterday.
I’m an amputee, and have had a lot of health and mobility problems over the past couple of years. I just got a new leg, and am finally getting back on my feet. (Pun intended!) Even standing for fairly short periods of time was impossible without a lot of pain a few weeks ago. At the McCain/Palin rally in Virginia Beach yesterday, we stood for around eight hours straight, and I wasn’t any more sore than anyone else. But that wasn’t what made the day one of the happiest of my life.
Since we were the first people in line, we were able to rush like mad when they opened up the area around the stage, so we were only about six or eight feet from it. There was something I really, really wanted to request if I was lucky enough to meet Governor Sarah Palin. After the speeches, when Sarah walked down the stairs, my mom’s was the first hand she shook. People were already crowding in and shoving things at her to sign, and she started moving away. I was so disappointed, but Mom grabbed her hand and asked her if she would grant my request–to sign my leg.
She kept moving, and Mom said, “Sarah!” one last time, and this time asked her to sign my artificial leg. Heh. Sarah’s face lit up and she said, “Oh, yeah, okay!” My sister Libby got a picture of her right when she realized what Mom was asking and looked at me. I just about melted into a puddle. (That’s my mom in the left of this photo, not me.) (By the way, you know how they say people on TV and in magazines are airbrushed within an inch of their lives and don’t really look that nice? Well, neither does Sarah Palin: she looks better. I joked with Mom that if she were any more radiant, our eyeballs would melt right out of our skulls. Photos and videos don’t do the woman justice.) Here’s a link the video Mom took. It’s shaky and super close-up in some shots, because we were all smashed so close together. The camera’s focused on Palin’s waist some of the time, but you can hear what was said and watch most of it. It ends with a shot of Sarah’s back when she hugs Mom, then one of Mom’s hand, and then I think Todd Palin’s feet…ha. The only thing missing from the video was when she first came over. There were several Secret Service men (and one incredibly dour woman) on every side, scowling the way they do, so I jokingly asked her if her guys would pounce on me if I took my leg off and tried to hand it to her, and she threw her head back and laughed.
I thought she’d hurriedly sign one ankle, but she signed “Sarah” on one side, then flipped it around and signed “Palin” on the other. It was all I could do to keep from turning into a weepy, snotty mess–and I would have if I’d looked to either side and realized Mom and one of my sisters were crying. She gave me a hug. I stepped back into my leg, and she kind of leaned over the barricade thing to check it out, and said I looked beautiful and was inspiring. I just barely managed, “So are you!” before I started crying, and she said, “Thank you!” and then hugged Mom, too.
When I shared the story with some lefty friends, I said I couldn’t explain why I see a totally different person than a lot of them see when they look at Gov. Palin, and I didn’t particularly care to try as I didn’t want to argue. What I see is someone who radiates love and compassion, someone who reminds me of my mother and other wonderful women in my life, someone who makes me want to do great things. What I wish I’d been able to say to her is that the major reason I consider her a hero is the way she stands in stark contrast to the false compassion of our day, in which otherwise good people believe love means trying to eliminate suffering by doling out death like it’s the ultimate gift. Modern humanitarians think, “I wouldn’t want to live like that,” and they never have a chance to see that (as Gov. Palin said in her RNC speech) with a special challenge comes a special joy. Even when we can’t see those special joys right away, our faith lets us trust we will see suffering turned right-side-out someday. I would still be here if my parents had known about my leg before I was born, because my mother is a lot like Sarah Palin, and they both have a heart like Our Lady: wise and brave; one that “ponders all these things,” when “all these things” includes the promise “a sword shall pierce your own heart, too.” But thousands of babies with my condition and others–cleft palate, club foot, Down syndrome, etc.–never had the chance to live.
In response to people who said it would have been better if a certain disabled little girl had never been born, the great Flannery O’Conner wrote, “In the absence of faith, we govern by tenderness. And tenderness leads to the gas chamber.” If Flannery had lived to see Roe vs. Wade and its effects, I think she would have added “abortion clinic.” Flannery knew about pain, suffering, and disability–she died of lupus when she was only forty years old. She lived her adult life dying, and knowing it, and you know how she wrote about it? “I have never been anywhere but sick. In a sense sickness is a place…and it’s always a place where nobody can follow. Sickness before death is a very appropriate thing and I think those who don’t have it miss one of God’s mercies.” Sickness and disability aren’t one and the same, but they share that quality of being a place apart–and a mercy, if only we let them. I admire Flannery greatly–oddly, all of my heroines either died or were born in 1964–Flannery, my mom, and Sarah Palin. Or maybe it’s not so odd–I can’t help but think Flannery passed a torch. Feel (more than) free to share this if you want! 🙂
The Madonna of Port Lligat
(detail) by Salvador Dali
Do you remember the story Jesus told His followers one day about the rich man and the beggar at his gate, “full of sores”, named Lazarus (Lk 16:19-31). Both of them die, the beggar goes to Abraham’s bosom while the rich man goes to Hades. The rich man calls out to Abraham asking that Lazarus be sent to the rich man’s brothers to warn them to change their lives. The rich man cries out to Abraham: “…if some one goes to them from the dead, they will repent”. Abraham does not share the once-rich man’s unfounded optimism.
Well imagine if an unborn baby were to speak words that our modern world could understand, wouldn’t that be enough? Wouldn’t today’s pro-abortion doubters – especially those who claim to be “Christian” – finally repent?
An unborn baby has spoken!
“Consequently, when Christ came into the world, he said,
‘Sacrifices and offerings thou hast not desired,
but a body hast thou prepared for me;
in burnt offerings and sin offerings thou hast taken no pleasure.
Then I said, ‘Lo, I have come to do thy will, O God,
as it is written of me in the roll of the book.'” Heb 10:5-7
In this case, the Unborn Christ prays to His Father. When did this occur? It occurs after the Incarnation, traditionally it has been understood to have occurred immediately, that is, at the one cell stage of Our Lord’s development. In a General Audience December 10, 1997, Pope John Paul II says that Christ spoke these words “at the very moment he enters the world“. At “the very moment” would be at the one cell stage.
Centuries before John Paul II, the great doctor of the Church, St. Alphonsus de Liguori, said that Christ spoke these words “from the very first moment of his entrance into the world”. The Unborn Christ refers to His body with respect, acknowledging it as a gift from the Father…but for what purpose? He states it simply “…to do thy will, O God.” In fact, He acknowledges that He has been sent: “I have come to do thy will…”
This Unborn Christ is the exemplar for every unborn child. No other unborn child will be a redeemer. But all are blessed with the gift of life and certainly called to do the holy will of God.
The Unborn Christ has spoken. He has revealed a key mystery about life to all who have ears to listen.