Monday, December 28, 2009

FREE Epiphany greeting card in PDF format

I don't, as a rule, mail Christmas Cards, but I do like sending and giving Epiphany cards. If you'd like one, just use the "email Kelly" link on the right (at the end of "About Kelly") and ask.

I'll send you a printable PDF file. All you need to do is print as many copies as you like (8 1/2 x 11), fold it twice, and there you are! The cover image is lovely and the text is from the Epiphany Vespers antiphon.

(If you still have the one from last year, this one's the same one. If you're like me, say an immediate Hail Mary and ask for another one since your probably lost last year's! )

This is my gift to you...thank you for being so good to me!

Save a Mass at a time

Brevity may be the soul o' wit, but in Father Dennis Brown's case, it's also the crux o' common sense.

At Mass today—on the Feast of the Holy Innocents—Father Dennis shared an inspired notion:

Save a baby: one Mass at a time.

The idea is simply and simply divine. During every Mass, ask God our Father, through His Son Jesus, to please turn one woman's plan to abort her child around. Just one!

Imagine the fruit this simple intention can reap!

Yes, it's important to work in secular ways to spread the Gospel of Life. Yes, it's important to pray...more than important, actually: it's vital.

But to offer a Mass!

This is a foolproof way to save a baby's life with every Mass you participate in. God will not deny this request. Nor, I reckon, will He forget you for making it.

And there's a bonus...

Imagine the joy you will experience when you meet the child God saved—through your intercession—in His Heavenly Kingdom.

Oh, you Holy Innocents: pray for us!

(Father Dennis Brown, OMV, is a priest serving at Saint Francis Chapel, Boston.)

Saturday, December 26, 2009

Senator Tom Coburn on ObamaCare

This vote is indeed historic. This Congress will be remembered for its arrogance, corruption and stupidity. In the year of 2009, a Congress ignored the coming economic storm and impending bankruptcy of our entitlement programs and embarked on an ideological crusade to bring our nation as close to single-payer, government-run health care as possible. If this bill becomes law, future generations will rue this day and I will do everything in my power to work toward its repeal. This bill will ration care, cut Medicare, increase premiums, fund abortion and bury our children in debt.

Read the good doctor's whole column here.

Saint Stephen, Deacon and Martyr

Of Saint Stephen, Saint Augustine wrote:

If Stephen had not prayed to God, the Church would not have had Paul.

Saint Stephen, pray for us, that we may use God's grace to pray for our enemies.

Monday, December 21, 2009

Saint Peter Canisius. The model of reform.

It's been my experience, during the final days of Advent, that optional memorials of saints are not celebrated.

(Unless, o' course, the celebrant is Father Dennis Brown, OMV, Saint Francis Chapel. This priest could find a saint to honor under a rug if one was to be found.)

Anyway, his homily on Saint Peter Canisius sorta turned me upside down.

First, you need to understand that the reformation of the Church began before the Protestant revolution.

Not many people realize this...that the Church realized Her need to reform Herself—and indeed, had begun the work of doing so—before the Protestants stepped in.

Peter Canisius was a reformer. But, unlike—say, for example, me—he didn't verbally or otherwise bang dissidents over the head.

He emulated Jesus, in charity and humility.

This gives me pause, since I realize that charity and humility and not two o' my strong points.

Read about this remarkable saint—and your friend and mine—here. Or google him to find more about him.

And, a favor? Ask him to pray for the Church. (And for me.)


Great series of meditations by Unborn Word of the Day

George and Michele Peate offer an amazing series of reflections, each introduced by the Unborn Jesus, on Our Lord's nine month journey in his mother's womb. I've been moved by each installation and I think you will be too. Go here, and make sure you check out the "recent posts." And rejoice!

Saturday, December 19, 2009

Popes Pius XII and John Paul II declared venerable!

A wonderful Christmas present from The Holy Spirit!

Sunday, December 13, 2009

Voters' remorse and other wackiness from Boston Globe letter writers

From today's Boston Globe Magazine, excerpts from letters on last week's articles on the anguish of in vitro fertilization parents, and on regarding the president's "loss of poetry"...

"A Nonissue"

Let me assure you “The Maybe-Baby Dilemma” (November 22) doesn’t exist. It’s disingenuous for couples taking such extreme measures to procreate to turn around and agonize over the fate of a leftover embryo....We’re talking about a few frozen cells. A potential life, true. But not truly a life until nine months of gestation and several years of nurturing, love, feeding -- the labors of love all parents do for their kids. By themselves, a few cells don’t mean nearly as much.

Charles Reitzel

Mr. Reitzel, in his own words, not only doesn't believe life begins at conception, but evidently believes a "true" life takes "several years of nurturing, love, feeding"... after birth! What's next? Life begins at first grade? Upon high school graduation?

"Missing the Magic"

Neil Swidey’s “Where’s the Poetry, Mr. President?” (Perspective, November 22) gives voice to something many have perhaps been feeling -- the unsettling sense of the political mundane that’s been creeping into the Barack Obama show. What Swidey doesn’t mention, though, is the Obama administration’s insistence that the president appear incessantly, making comments, giving speeches, and doing interviews. This over-accessibility is watering down the product, preventing its refinement, and making it seem boring when it is not. The Obama strategists should take a lesson from Colonel Tom Parker, who understood that by keeping the supply of Elvis a little behind demand, the demand was always there.

Mark Rast

Mr. Rast: he's the president, not an oldie rock and roller. (I think.) In any case, why throw the advisers under the bus? Could it be that the president -- not his administration, but the president himself -- likes incessant appearances? (Colonel Tom Parker, huh?)

Where is the substance we thought would come with President Obama’s election? That’s more worrying than the lack of sound bites. I was excited for his “Conversation on Race,” but after his great speech, that conversation never materialized. I fear this presidency was built on words spoken and written prior to his inauguration and that the rest of the term will be in the hands of the machine behind the man.

Everitt Speros

Another one blaming the background guys rather than facing what might be the truth...that the "substance we thought would come with" the election is as substantive as the Emperor's New Clothes.

I’ve been an ardent Obama supporter and moved to tears by some of his speeches. This year, however, almost from his inauguration, I’ve felt something is missing. Swidey’s article hit the nail on the head. The poetry has gone out of his speeches and a dull prose has taken its place. I worry he’s not what I thought he was. I take issue with his economic team, with his possible escalation of war, and his anemic backing of those who were his most ardent supporters. He downright waffled on what he said was the most important aspect of health care -- the public options. Barack Obama seemed to go silent just when our liberal causes needed him to be the most vociferous. Where is he? I don’t know.

Natalie Rosen

Ms. Rosen? I'll tell you where he is...right where you put him. The term "poetic justice" comes to mind.

Somewhat to my surprise, I was disappointed in Obama’s inaugural address. I took the day off in January 1961 and was transfixed by John F. Kennedy on that cold snowy day. Perhaps I anticipated something on that level this year. It did not come. It was at least partly his speechmaking that drew me to Obama: At last, a president who could put together two consecutive complete sentences! But he has disappeared. Bring him back!

Ruth L. Kaplan

My dear Ms. Kaplan: he has not disappeared. He's here. Because o' you and the folks who put him into office, we're stuck with him. But cheer up! You can deal with it! Remember that "speechmaking" that first drew you to him, look in the mirror and repeat after him: "Yes I Can!"

Thursday, December 10, 2009

Dockers: An ad I wish I wrote

Once upon a time, men wore the pants, and wore them well. Women rarely had to open doors and little old ladies never crossed the street alone. Men took charge because that's what they do. But somewhere along the way, the world decided it no longer needed men, disco by disco, latte by foamy non-fat latte, men were stripped of their khakis and left stranded on the road between boyhood and androgyny. But today, there are questions our genderless society has no answers for. The world sits idly by as cities crumble, children misbehave, and those little old ladies remain on one side of the street. For the first time since bad guys, we need heroes. We need grown-ups. We need men to put down the plastic fork, step away from the salad bar and untie the world from the tracks of complacency. It's time to get your hands dirty. It's time to answer the call of manhood. It's time to WEAR THE PANTS.

(c) Dockers

Thursday, December 03, 2009

Contemplating a Christmas gift list for priests...

...that is, for any priest who would love to give me a gift for Christmas.

Heading the list is a simple mantra, one that Father Z has popularized, but in any case one I—and I pray most Mass-goers—hold dear:


Starting out with a simple "good morning"....

...or "good afternoon" or "good evening" or "how the heck are ya"—why do so many celebrants think this is so necessary? So much necessary that it precedes the Entrance Antiphon, the Sign of the Cross, and one form or another of the most beautiful of greetings: "The Lord be with you"?

You might say this is no big deal and perhaps you're right. But I think it is the beginning of the slippery slope that shines the spotlight on the celebrant, rather than Whom he is acting for.

Besides, it's the first thing that happens at Mass that sets my teeth on edge, and this being my blog, there you are.

More, God willing, later. Meanwhile, if you want to add your own gripes, feel free.

Remember though, to pray for our priests...and to thank Our Father for giving them to us, and to ask for more, in Jesus' Name.