Cluster of wheat image Grapes and vines image Cluster of wheat image
November 30th, 2008


In my humble opinion, Aimee Milburn Cooper’s recent blogpost on Historical Christian says it all and should be required reading for the universe.  In a few simple unpretentious paragraphs she has laid it all out – the sexual dysfunction of our age.  It is so commonsense, so biblical, so Humanae Vitae, so crystal clear!   I want it to be understood by all preachers, teachers,  and parents everywhere.    I lay awake last night wondering how I could get Dr. Laura Schlessinger to read it on her radio program, how to get Oprah to believe it and tell it to everyone, how to be sure Sarah Palin has it down pat should she ever have the chance to explain from a bully pulpit why the sexual revolution was a dumb idea.

I haven’t figured out how to do any of those things but feel that at least I have to give Aimee’s post a shout out. Truth has a quiet engaging beauty and will prevail in the end, but I sometimes wish it spoke more loudly.  That’s why there’s this one old lady with a blog nobody reads crying:  LISTEN UP, WORLD! Go here.

November 29th, 2008


I just turned on the computer to see what weather I had to dress for.  We will pray at the abortion mill this morning and one needs to be prepared.   I noted a “Ta-Da!” in my Google reader and wondered what someone was ta-da-ing about.  It was a fellow muser, at Musings of a Housewife and the ta-da was about her Christmas tree – up and beautiful and it’s still November!   Well, OK.

I noted to the right of the tree a blog title “At the Foot of His Grave, I Sat Down and Cried.”  Intrigued, I clicked it.  It seems our housewife’s father died over a year ago and she had not attended the funeral – she explains why.  But now she has the opportunity to visit his grave at the Florida National Cemetery.    She finds the grave, does not know what she feels or should feel. She holds her baby and kneels before the gravestone:

I took her, and kneeled in front of the stone. I looked at the words, ‘Beloved Father and Grandfather.’

‘Dad,’ I said, ‘This is Cassidy.’

And I started to cry.

And I started to cry.

So here it is, still dark, before breakfast, and I am crying.  But crying not only for Cassidy’s grief (until this moment I had not know our Musing Housewife’s name was Cassidy) but for the outpouring in the comments that followed.   They are all short, beginning with “Oh my friend”  and “I’m so sorry” and sending love and hugs.

It is still dark and I haven’t had my breakfast and I am marveling at the connectedness of humankind in this impersonal cybersphere.

Surely it is a marvelous world and we are wonderfully made and mysteriously linked.


Rejoice with those who rejoice, weep with those who weep.   Romans 12:15

November 24th, 2008


Janis Clark sings for the unborn.

No comment necessary. Just weep.


Listen, they are weeping, little ones who died in darkness
They plead for us and intercede for us
Their blood is on our hands as we lay hold of the lie –
They have to die.

Small voices cry, they whisper “Mercy”
To him whose blood alone heals our hearts of stone
Listen, they are singing now, “Mercy” – they are our hope
Pia Jesu, pia Jesu, miserere (Gentle Jesus, gentle Jesus, have mercy)
Pia Jesu, pia Jesu, miserere
Pia Jesu, pia Jesu, miserere, miserere, pia Jesu.


I tell you the truth, whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers of mine, you did for me. Matthew 25:40

November 23rd, 2008


On November 9, the Sunday after the election, Rev. Jay Scott Newman of St. Mary’s Church in Greenville, SC, wrote in his parish bulletin:  “Voting for a pro-abortion politician when a plausible pro-life alternative exists constitutes material cooperation with intrinsic evil, and those Catholics who do so place themselves outside of the full communion of Christ’s Church and under the judgment of divine law.”   He added that those who had voted for Obama should go to confession before receiving communion.

Newman’s comment was eventually picked up by the AP (Nov. 13) with the title: SC priest: No communion for Obama supporters.

Jeff Mirus and Phil Lawler, both writers on  the Catholic Culture site (Trinity Communications) simultaneously,  depending on what they had been reading, came out with differing opinions about what Father Newman should have/shouldn’t have said.
On November 16 Father Newman wrote: ” I regret that I did not take time last week to parse out every stipulation of the Church’s teaching, because the failure to do so allowed those who oppose that teaching to ridicule it by falsely asserting that I intended to deny Holy Communion to anyone who voted for the president-elect or that I presumed to know or judge their conscience.”

And Jeff Mirus approvingly comments: “… he left so much out of his original statement that it seriously distorted the Church’s teaching in a way that could damage souls. Nonetheless, he quite properly corrected himself within days, and how often do we see that?”

Father Dwight Longenecker (also of St. Mary’s) on November 20 recaps the tale of the “perfect media storm” that visited them after Father Newman’s bulletin comment.  (How news does get around!) He states the parish received over 5000 e-mails which he puts into four categories:  Loyal, Lame, Defiant, and Demonic. “But the “defiant” category makes up the largest number of our respondents, and is the saddest category of all. Statistics show us that these are the Catholics who sealed Obama’s victory. They are people who were poorly catechized over the last 40 years in America. They have been nurtured in the Protest Generation and told that it is fine, even noble, to disagree with the Church. They have been taught to act according to their conscience without taking the trouble or time to inform it. “ FatherLongenecker’s comments are well worth reading and help one to understand the appalling fact that 54% of Catholics voted for Obama.

Finally, hidden among the comments following Longenecker’s post is this little gem by Deal Hudson:

November 20th, 2008 | 6:29am

I haven’t made any comment on the ruckus until now, because I knew there was more to the story than was being reported in the media, and no one should be surprised that the AP would be the primary culprit in twisting the facts.

I knew Fr. Newman back when, and know him to be very articulate, intelligent, and a great priest. His only mistake, in my opinion, was not realizing that his message in the church bulletin would take about a nano-second to make it into the national headlines, and from there nothing could control the spin.

I appreciate knowing the real story of what happened in South Carolina, and sorry for all the heartburn this must have caused, but I’m also glad the so many more people know about Fr. Jay Scott Newman who is one of the finest priests I have ever known.

Written by Deal Hudson

Jeff Mirus says that truth is tricky.  It is, indeed.  But it is a beautiful thing to watch truthseekers study, parse, nuance, even recant, until they come up with what, for the time being, seems to be as close to the whole truth as they can get.   I love truthseekers and I feel I have found some. God bless you all!


And you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free.  John 8:32

November 19th, 2008


It was a TV comedy series.  The bride-to-be looked lovingly at the groom and whispered: “If it were possible to promise to love you forever, I would.”  They then proceeded to go through a wedding ceremony–-for their parents’ sake.

More and more nowadays in real life marriage is getting little respect.  There are couples who are living together because they love each other, are “committed to each other,” and don’t need the formality of a paper that says they are committed.  There are others who “marry” for the time being because it is unrealistic to expect what they feel now to last forever.  Still others live together but are not committed; they just want to enjoy each other, no strings attached.

“Marriage is on the way out, it is a dying institution.”  “Marriage is an anachronism.”  “Marriage is the tender trap.”  Marriage is a mirage.

Yet people continue to get married.  And, if the tears are any indication, people continue to find marriages very moving.   What is it about marriage that makes it at once so attractive and so off-putting?  So heart-warming and yet so frightening?

When people say that marriage is outmoded they are not, of course, talking about group marriage, trial marriage, open marriage, two-stage marriage, or contract marriage (with an option for renewal.)   They are talking about marriage in the traditional sense–a commitment, a contract, if you will, “to take each other, to have and to hold, from this day forward, for better, for worse, for richer, for poorer, in sickness and in health, until death do us part.”

After the couple in the television program had gone through the wedding ceremony, were they married under the above definition?  I would say they were not, simply because they did not believe such a marriage was possible and therefore their promises were empty mouthings. Read the rest of this entry »

November 13th, 2008


What’s going on?  Has Grammy lost it?

Because I don’t remember whether my mother or daddy taught me this poem, I don’t know whether it is from olde Ireland or olde England.  But you’ll believe it is olde when you get to the tintype.

Once there was a molice pan
Saw a bittle lum
Sitting on the sturbcone
Chewing gubber rum.
Say, said the molice pan
Won’t you simme gum?
Tixie on your nintype
Said the bittle lum.

I heard this bit of whimsy for the first time when a fellow prisoner, Brenda Starr, quoted it in a “talent show” in Niantic State Prison in 1989.


Once uton a pime in a coreign fountry lived a geautiful birl named Rindecella.  There she lived with her mugly other and two sad bisters.  Also in this coreign fountry lived a prandsome hince.  Now, this prandsome hince was having a bancy fall and was inviting people from riles amound.  But Rindecella couldn’t go because all she had to wear were some old rirty dags.  So she just cat down and sried.  And as she was kitting there srying suddenly appeared her gairy mudfather who said “Rindecella, you can go to the bancy fall.”

He touched her with his wagic mand and there appeared a kig boach and hix white sorses.  “But,” he said, “you must be mome by hidnight or you’ll purn into a tumpkin.”

So Rindecella went to the bancy fall, met the prandsome hince, and nanced all dight and lell in fuv.  Yes, she lell in fuv!  Suddenly the midclock struck night.  Rindecella staced down the rairs and when she beached the rottom, she slopped her dripper.

The next day the prandsome hince went all over the coreign fountry looking for the geautiful birl who had slopped her dripper.  Finally, he got to Rindecella’s house and he tried it on the mugly other, but it fidn’t dit.  Then he tried in on the two sicked wisters, but it fidn’t dit.  Finally he tried it on Rindecella and it fid dit.  And the two of them got harried and lived mappily forafter ever.

Now the storal of the mory is this:  If you’re ever in a coreign fountry, and you want a prandsome hince to lall in fuv with you, don’t forget — slop your dripper!

Unfortunately, I couldn’t remember what this kind of word play is called and Google wasn’t helping much.  Finally I resorted to AllExperts and the lovely lady, Darleen Claire Wodzenski  (BaDiv, LMT, NMT, ND, ordained minister, licensed neuromuscular therapist and naturopathic holistic practitioner) who replied quite promptly informed me they were spoonerisms.  Then I could go back to google and get the lowdown.

Wikipedia tells me that “a spoonerism is an error in speech or deliberate play on words in which corresponding consonants,  vowels, or morphemes are switched (see metathesis). It is named after the Reverend William Archibald Spooner (1844–1930), Warden of New College, Oxford, who was notoriously prone to this tendency.”  I also learned that American Country-Western singer/comedian Archie Campbell is famous for his stories of RinderCella (Cinderella).

Other writers and comics have had their way with Rindercella, and a number of versions can be found online both in print and on Youtube.  They are all different, having been tweaked by each to his own liking.

Mardon, me padam, do you occupew this pie?
Indo I deed, sir.
Lorry, sady, you’ll have to take another chew in back of the purch.
Let me sew you to another sheet.

Have a dappy hay.   Mile a slot.     And remember —-


The Lord is a shoving leopard.  Psalm 32.

November 12th, 2008


It was the morning of 11/11/08.  As usual, I parked my car in front of the local abortuary before I went to 7:30 mass at nearby St. Peter’s.  After mass, walking to my car, I noted that an old man who  left mass ahead of me stopped and made the sign of the cross on my windshield as he passed by.   He knows I always park there when we pray the rosary on killing days at the mill.  He’s been doing this lately.  That’s nice, I thought.

As I looked down the alley  where the abortuary is (we call it Death Alley) to see if it was “business as usual” on Veteran’s Day, a young man got out of the biggest van I’ve ever seen and approached me.  “I’m so sorry,” he said.  “I clipped your car!”  We looked at my car – on a 1978 Olds it’s hard to see if the rear bumper is any worse than usual.  I would never have noticed it was damaged in a hundred years.  “Do you want to call the police?” he asked.  “Do you want my name and insurance number?”  He kept apologizing.  He said he had previously driven a small car and wasn’t used to that big van which he had only owned for a week.  I was so impressed that he didn’t just drive on after he clipped me, hoping no one saw him.  Instead he waited till I appeared!  Diogenes, where are you?  I’ve found an honest man!   This honest man is named Edward Barker.  If he should ever google his name sometime in the future and go through the five million results, he may discover how appreciated his honesty was.

My pro-life confreres appeared and we prayed our fifteen decades of the rosary and the Divine Mercy chaplet.  We shared our dismay at the election of radically pro-abortion Barack Obama.  God has blessed me with such good friends.  A veteran walked by  on his way to the 11-11-11 ceremonies at the War Memorial at the end of Main Street.  We explained why we were praying at Medical Options and he said he had been stationed at the Coast. I’m vague about what that means but offered him a handshake and a “God bless.”  He responded with a hug.  That’s nice, I thought.

The View was in progress when I returned home.  Sir Elton John told about writing the songs for the Broadway musical, Billy Elliot.  Billy was a coal miner’s son who wanted to be a ballet dancer, and the musical has been performed in London, Sydney, and now New York with three young boys who alternate playing the lead role.  One of them did a breathtaking demonstration of  the “Electricity” he feels when he dances.  I feel privileged to have seen it.

Also today 21-year-old college student/waitress Brianne Sherman won $250,000 on Who Wants to be a Millionaire?.

One o’clock.  Nap time.

Nice morning, I thought.


I know the plans I have for you, declares the Lord, plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.   Jeremiah 29:11
November 11th, 2008


In the past week I have been so impressed with the quality of two posts on two blogs that I feel moved to share the blessing.  Both blogs are by young ladies who are converts to Catholicism and just reading them should put to rest the popular  notion on the left that Christians in general, and Catholics in particular, are bigoted Neanderthals.

How long have I been blogging?  About six months.  How long have I roamed the blogosphere?  Even less than that.  I jumped right in not knowing what I was doing.  But I have found that there is much out there that is a total waste of time, and time is one thing that we all have in the same quantity.   So, in the interest of pointing to quality writing from unusual perspectives I offer the following.

The first blog is Conversion Diary by Jennifer F. whose conversion story begins here.   She tells how she, a former atheist, came to believe in God, and this is followed by another post on Why I Am a Catholic.  She is now 31 years old and the mother of three small children.  The post that so impressed me is titled How Would You Know?, dated November 5, and is found here.   It starts with a picture taken from an album at the Holocaust Museum of workers at Auschwitz on a break and enjoying themselves.  She wonders how they can look so happy, — do they realize the horror they are taking part in?  Her thoughts on the subject are thought-provoking, even somewhat chilling.

The second blog is Historical Christian.   Aimee Milburn Cooper has only been married about a month.  She has a Master’s in Theology and was a class valedictorian.  Her conversion story begins here,  and it’s a
fascinating one!

However,  the blogpost that so impressed me  and prompted me to write today is here.   Aimee is newly married and they have  just moved into their new (to them) home.  She realizes that she knows how to do
research but has no idea of how to keep house.  So, of course, she researches the subject of housecleaning!   Her thoughts on the theology of housework are quite profound.   (I am so looking forward to her thoughts on the theology of marriage and motherhood!)

Let me know if you enjoyed my “finds.”


Thy word is a lamp unto my feet, And light unto my path.  Psalm 119:105

November 8th, 2008


1. Pray for Obama’s protection. We already know that some weird, neo-Nazi fanatics in Tennessee plotted to kill Sen. Obama during his campaign. Let’s pray that racist hatred is not allowed to spread. Let’s cancel every assassin’s bullet in the name of Jesus. May civility triumph over bigotry.

2. Cover his wife and daughters in prayer. It is not easy to live under constant media scrutiny. Pray for Obama’s wife, Michelle, and their two daughters, Malia and Sasha, as they face invasive cameras, nosy reporters, maniacal fans and dangerous enemies. Obama is not only a politician but also a husband and a father.

3. Pray that Obama will govern with God’s wisdom. God rewarded Solomon because he asked for wisdom instead of wealth, long life or vengeance on his enemies (see 1 Kings 3:11-12). Pray that Obama will order his priorities like that. Despite Solomon’s tragic character flaws, his legacy was wisdom. We can ask God to give our president the same grace.

4. Ask God to keep our president humble. Many great American leaders became corrupt after they moved to Washington. The fatal attraction of fame, wealth and power proved irresistible. The only thing that will guard a man or woman from this pitfall is humility. May God deliver President Obama from the curse of pride.

5. Pray for wise and righteous advisers to surround him. Godly leaders cannot do their job alone. Even the best leaders have failed because they trusted the wrong people. Pray that Obama will not select his counselors based on party, race, pedigree or political cronyism but on godly character and proven wisdom. Pray also that he will not allow secret traitors into his inner circle.

6. Ask for the spirit of reconciliation. Some segments of our deeply divided society want nothing to do with Obama now that he has won the presidency. Even some Christians will be tempted to harbor resentment and nurse political grudges throughout his term in office. Pray that God will grant forgiveness and healing so that leaders on all political levels can have constructive dialogue.

7. Pray that Obama will adopt pro-life convictions. Many politicians have changed their views on key issues while in office. In the 1800s some leaders who favored slavery later denounced it. In the 1950s some who opposed racial integration later became champions of it. Even though Obama won approval from many voters because he sanctions abortion, God could soften and change his heart.

8. Bind all evil forces assigned to manipulate our president. The specter of Islamic terrorism looms over the United States, and dark forces are ready to infiltrate. Our only hope lies in prayer to the God who is able to expose and outwit the schemes of the wicked. This is truly a time for spiritual warfare, and intercessors must not come off the wall in this hour! Pray that no foreign government, terrorist organization or demonic principality will use Obama as a tool. We must stand strong against the spirit of antichrist that promotes dictatorship, persecution of Christians and hostility toward Israel.

9. Pray that Obama’s door will remain open to the church. The loudest voices of secular culture—from Bill Maher in Hollywood to atheists in academia—would be happy if religion were removed from public life. Pray that Obama, who claims to have a personal faith in Jesus Christ, will unapologetically welcome Christian leaders into his company and seek their counsel. And pray that false religious leaders (who claim to know Christ but deny His power) will not have his ear.

10. Pray that our nation will enjoy God’s peace and blessing during the Obama administration. The apostle Paul instructed early believers to pray for all in authority “so that we may lead a tranquil and quiet life in all godliness and dignity” (1 Tim. 2:2, NASB). God’s will is for America to experience peace and prosperity so that we can continue to export the gospel to the nations. This must happen whether a Democrat or a Republican is in the White House. As we cry out for God’s mercy on our wayward nation, pray that He will allow us to be a light to the world as we finance global missions, feed and heal the world’s poor and share Christ’s love at home and abroad.

The above Ten Ways to Pray for Obama arrived in my e-mail a day or two ago.  I have not been able to  find out who wrote it so I could give appropriate credit.  However,  people who write prayers are usually not seeking recognition but, rather, want to encourage more people to pray.  I include it here, with gratitude.

Postscript:  In no time at all I have been informed that the author of the above prayers is  J. Lee Grady of Charisma magazine — see here


More things are wrought by prayer than this world dreams of.   Tennyson.

November 6th, 2008


I have a deep, deep sadness about Barack Obama’s election for it means that any progress that has been made over the past 35 years in protecting the lives of the unborn will be entirely wiped out.  See his promise to Planned Parenthood.  Some say he moved away from this stand toward the end of the campaign but obviously he was serious and the liberals will see that he keeps his promise when he said  “the first thing I’d do as president is sign the Freedom of Choice Act.”  This  man was he only Senator who voted against the Born Alive Infant Protection Act.

Goodbye to the requirement to notify parents that their kid is having an abortion.  Goodbye to requiring that the mother be informed about fetal development or shown an ultrasound.  Goodbye to limits based on the viability of the baby.   The FOCA would overturn  over three hundred local, state, and federal abortion restriction laws, including the Partial Birth Abortion Ban.

According to Wikipedia:

The Freedom of Choice Act (H.R. 3719/S. 2020) is a bill in the United States Congress which, if enacted, would abolish all restrictions and limitations on the right of women in the United States to have an abortion, whether at the State or Federal level.

It also has a retroactive effect in that it says: “This Act applies to every Federal, State and local statute, ordinance, regulation, administrative order, decision, policy, practice, or other action enacted, adopted, or implemented before, on, or after the date of enactment of this Act.”

What could possibly be more overreaching than that?  OPEN SEASON ON UNBORN BABIES COMING UP once Obama is sworn in.

As one poster commented on Mercator Net:

The election process and the result is a testimony to the great openness of  the United States which has been, and always will be, its great strength, but I share the terrible foreboding expressed in some of the other postings.  No-one who has promised to unleash the ‘war’ on the unborn that this man has promised can seriously appeal for unity. As with slavery, there is no middle ground.

Enough crying in my beer.  One good thing happened on election day.  Marriage has survived in another three states!   With the addition of Florida, Arizona and California, a total of 30 states have now amended their constitutions to protect the sanctity of marriage.

Marriage has always been and should continue to be a union between a man and a women.  Other unions may be for bonding, but only marriage is a union designed for bonding and babies.  We all know what the marital act is – and only a man and a woman can perform it.  Without it a marriage is not consummated.  If two men want to perform anal sex, fist, or urinate on each other, whatever else you might call it, it’s not sexual intercourse.  Two women can “pleasure” each other in bed but let’s not call it intercourse.  If they want a legal arrangement, its easily available.  Let’s keep marriage something special and not change its very raison d’etre.

Obama has threatened to repeal the Federal Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA).  As a Senator he wrote:   While the repeal of DOMA is essential, the unfortunate truth is that it is unlikely with Mr. Bush in the White House and Republicans in control of both chambers of Congress.  Of course.   They don’t come any more liberal than Barack Obama.

Fortunately, the vast majority of Americans favor protecting marriage.  Barack Obama does not (yet) have a free hand to “transform this nation” to his liking.

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No    No   Yes

I have set before you life and death, blessing and curse; choose life, then, that you  and your descendants  may live. Deuteronomy 30:19.