Ask Powerball

Dear Powerball:
Why do Catholics pray in repetition in spite of the admonitions against it in Matthew 6:7?

The verse you are refering to reads in the King James version, "But when ye pray, use not vain repetitions, as the heathen do: for they think that they shall be heard for their much speaking."

Yet Jesus gave us the "Our Father" prayer which most Protestant Christians pray with no qualms about praying repeating often. The same command in Luke 11:2 reads: "And he said unto them, When ye pray, say, Our Father..." -- "when you pray, say..."

Christ Himself prayed in repetitions. Matthew 26:44: "And he left them, and went away again, and prayed the third time, saying the same words".

Have Israelite, early Christian, Jewish, Catholic and Orthodox liturgists been praying "vainly" for all these millennia, only to be set straight in the past hundred or so years by sola scriptura Protestants? Is it wrong to sing hymns that have been sung, verbatim, before? Or could some Protestants be simply wrong about what Catholics do when praying formal prayers?

IRS Asked to Probe Dr. James Dobson

A Washington-based group has asked the Internal Revenue Service to investigate whether Focus on the Family or its founder James Dobson violated IRS rules by electioneering.
James Bopp, an attorney for the Colorado Springs-based conservative Christian group, said the group has fully complied with IRS code.

The complaint, filed Monday by Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington, also asked the IRS to investigate whether the tax-exempt status of Focus on the Family should be revoked. Tax-exempt organizations cannot participate in campaigns for or against candidates for public office.

New Flight 93 memorial crescent

You can hum "We are the Champions" as you read this.

Designers of a Flight 93 memorial have made a circular, bowl-shaped piece of land its centerpiece, replacing the original crescent-shape design that some critics had said was a symbol honoring terrorists, officials announced today.

The new design features most of the same details of the original, which was unveiled in September after a worldwide design competition. A tower with 40 wind chimes welcomes visitors to the site, where they can then walk to a large circular field ringed by 40 groves of red and sugar maple trees, symbolizing the 40 passengers and crew who died on the plane.
Officials say the circle enhances the earlier design by putting more emphasis on the crash site, according to details in the Flight 93 National Memorial's November newsletter. A break in the trees will symbolize the path the plane took as it crashed.

Pittsburgh Post-Gazette.

My Michael Jackson Story

Could this guy make any more bad moves? Well, yes he can. Michael Jackson has officially announced that he intends to convert to Islam, according to a report on the website of Arab-Israeli newspaper Panorama.

Jackson's announcement noted he is moving to Bahrain and has purchased some real-estate on an artificial island there. An artificial island is the perfect place for this guy.

The singer said he decided to convert to Islam because he is convinced it is the closest religion to his personal beliefs. I can see that. Mohammad was a child molester as well.

He scratched the Jewish faith off his list by saying "they're like leeches...I'm so tired of it. They start out the most popular person in the world, make a lot of money, big house, cars and everything. End up penniless. It is a conspiracy. The Jews do it on purpose."

Jackson also noted he intends to soon move all his assets and his studio from the U.S. to Bahrain, and expressed his hope to be rid of various legal troubles and enjoy the kind of freedom he says he does not have in America. Ahh yes Bahrain, the beacon of freedom for the world.

Say hello to Cat Stevens as you moonwalk your way to your artificial island.

It's a Frickin' Christmas Tree!

I'm so sick of these can't say Christmas, only sparkle season, happy holiday, so no one gets offend people. I'm offended.

But yeah, out of the stands comes a loud cheer.... Go Dennis Go!

If it's a spruce tree adorned with 10,000 lights and 5,000 ornaments displayed on the Capitol grounds in December, it's a Christmas tree and that's what it should be called, says House Speaker Dennis Hastert. I like this guy.

Hastert, R-Ill., in a letter to the Architect of the Capitol, recommended that the annual Capitol Holiday Tree, as it has been called the past several years, be renamed the Capitol Christmas Tree.

"I strongly urge that we return to this tradition and join the White House, countless other public institutions and millions of American families in celebrating the holiday season with a Christmas tree," Hastert wrote to Architect Alan Hantman.

His office said the tree began to be referred to as the Holiday Tree in the 1990s. Spokesman Ron Bonjean said the reasons were unclear.

On Dec. 8 Hastert will flip the switch to light the CHRISTAMS (so sue me) tree, a 65-foot Engelmann Spruce from the Santa Fe National Forest in New Mexico. On Tuesday workmen were erecting the CHRISTAMS tree on the West Front of the Capitol.

Al-Zarqawi's Clan, Family Publicly Disowns Him

Hundreds of clan members of terror leader Abu Musab al-Zarqawi publicly disowned him Tuesday despite anger from his al-Qaeda in Iraq, which said they will face God's judgment for abandoning him.


Ask Powerball

Thanks for all the email with questions about Catholic beliefs. Mony have come in. I will try to get to all of them. Here is one of the many:

When you ask a saint to pray for you, are you not disrespecting God?

Certainly not. Roman Catholics, in addition to praying to Jesus Christ, often pray to Mary and Saints. Protestants do not usually do this. I don't believe there is anything wrong with asking other Christians to pray to God for us. That would include those who are in Heaven.

The Bible tells us to ask for help in prayer. In Psalm 103, we pray, "Bless the Lord, O you his angels, you mighty ones who do his word, hearkening to the voice of his word! Bless the Lord, all his hosts, his ministers that do his will!" (Ps. 103:20-21). And in Psalm 148 we pray, "Praise the Lord! Praise the Lord from the heavens, praise him in the heights! Praise him, all his angels, praise him, all his host!" (Ps. 148:1-2).

Most of us ask others to pray for us. Remember, "on earth as it is in heaven".

Presbyterians & Hezbollah: Apologists & terrorists

Will buttering up Middle Eastern fanatics for the destruction of Israel become an annual prelude to welcoming the Prince of Peace?

Word comes to us that elements of the Presbyterian Church USA met with a top official of the southern Lebanon-based terrorist organization Hezbollah last month.

In October 2004, retired theology professor Ronald Stone of Pittsburgh praised Hezbollah during an official "fact-finding" mission for the Presbyterian Church USA. The public outcry was deafening; the national church distanced itself from the remarks.

Yet, the well-regarded Middle East Media Research Institute says Lebanese media on Oct. 21 reported another delegation of the Presbyterian Church USA met with terrorist commander Nabil Qawuq at Hezbollah's invitation.

Hezbollah was assured that the Presbyterian delegation had voted for the Democratic Party. A delegation spokesman said U.S. Jewish organizations are pressuring the church to back away from divesting its investments in corporations doing business with Israel.

Troubles with Jews allow a basis for solidarity with Hezbollah, eh?

"The Americans hear in the Western media that Hezbollah is a terrorist organization, and they do not hear any other opinion," spokesman Robert Worley said.

Of course they hear other opinions; they're quite common. These are the ideas of people who cloak their despicable apologies for terror with "Christian understanding."

Pittsburgh Tribune-Review Editorial

NAACP Urges Clemency for Gang-Founding Murderer - The National Association for the Advancement of Colored People has launched a two-week "crusade" in California to show its opposition to the pending execution of gang founder and Nobel Peace Prize nominee Stanley "Tookie" Williams. Full Story

Muslim attack in Oakland, CA

Last Wednesday, a group of about a dozen black Muslims wearing suits and bow ties - attired in the same fashion as members of the Nation of Islam, brazenly vandalized two Oakland, California liquor stores, terrorizing the store clerks and warning them not to sell liquor to blacks and black Muslims. Using metal pipes, the men smashed cooler doors, swept numerous bottles of liquor from store shelves and knocked over food displays. The attacks took place at the New York Market at 3446 Market Street in Oakland, and the San Pablo Liquor Store, 2363 San Pablo Avenue, also in Oakland. Although attired like the members of the Nation of Islam headed by Louis Farrakhan whose signature garb consists of dark suits and bow ties, investigation suggests that the perpetrators are associated with a group of radical black Muslims once led by now-deceased Yusef Bey (born Joseph Stevens in 1935). Bey's group operates Your Black Muslim Bakery Store Chain located at 5832 San Pablo Avenue, also in Oakland. Bey and his followers have a long history of violence associated with their group, which was allegedly inspired by the Nation of Islam. Just last month, Yusef Bey's son and successor to lead the group of radicals was slain in an assassination-style hit. Bey reportedly discovered the Nation of Islam in 1964 and met with their leader, Elijah Muhammad on numerous occasions, also taking the advice of Muhammad to locate in Oakland. A thorough and extensive historical account of Bey and his group of black Muslims is located at this LINK.

Yesterday, the owner of the New York Market that was vandalized last Wednesday, Tony HAMDAN, was kidnapped and his store set ablaze, destroying the establishment. HAMDAN was found locked in the trunk of a blue car in the parking lot of the Safeway store on San Pablo Avenue in El Cerrito about 1:40 P.M. He did not appear to be harmed during the abduction. Although Oakland police have not publicly admitted a direct connection between last week's "attacks" and the arson and kidnapping, sources privately stated that there is a direct connection between the events, the perpetrators are some of the same individuals who terrorized the establishments, and about a half-dozen arrest warrants have been or will be issued for the men identified on the surveillance footage from the stores.

Crying Mary?

Carrying rosary beads and cameras, the faithful have been coming in a steady stream to a church on the outskirts of Sacramento for a glimpse of what some are calling a miracle: A statue of the Virgin Mary they say has begun crying a substance that looks like blood.

It was first noticed more than a week ago, when a priest at the Vietnamese Catholic Martyrs Church spotted a stain on the statue's face and wiped it away. Before Mass on Nov. 20, people again noticed a reddish substance near the eyes of the white concrete statue.

Thousands of such incidents are reported around the world each year, though many turn out to be hoaxes or natural phenomena.

The Diocese of Sacramento has so far not commented on the statue, and the two priests affiliated with the church did not return a telephone message Saturday.The Rev. James Murphy, deacon of the diocese's mother church, the Cathedral of the Blessed Sacrament, said church leaders are always skeptical at first.


Unofficial translation of Vatican Instruction

The following is an unofficial translation by CWN of the full Vatican document.
Congregation for Catholic Education:

Instruction concerning the criteria of vocational discernment regarding persons with homosexual tendencies, considering their admission to seminary and to Holy Orders.

Available here

Confining Free Speech in Pittsburgh

Two Pittsburgh City Council members introduced legislation today that would govern protests near clinics, hospitals and other healthcare facilities.

The legislation, sponsored by Councilmen Doug Shields and William Peduto, would create a 100-foot zone around entrances to healthcare facilities. People could protest within that zone but could not go within 8 feet of a person seeking to use the facility without that person's consent.
It would bar any protests within 15 feet of the entrance to a healthcare facility

Pittsburgh Post-Gazette

Buddha Probe

Authorities in Nepal urged religious groups and scientists on Sunday to help solve the mystery of a meditating teenaged boy who some believe is an incarnation of Buddha.

At least 100,000 devotees from Nepal and neighbouring India have flocked in recent weeks to a dense forest in southeastern Nepal to see 15-year-old Ram Bahadur Bamjon, who, his associates say, has been meditating without food or water for six months.

Bamjon sits cross-legged beneath a "pipal" tree, which is sacred to Hindus, with his eyes closed in meditation. He does not speak and followers are only allowed to see him from a distance of 50 metres (165 feet).

The young mystic is hidden from public view at night behind a curtain drawn by his followers. Doctors observing from a distance have said the boy is breathing normally but is weak.
Well give the guy a sandwich!

His mother, Maya Devi -- the same name as that of Buddha's mother -- said Bamjon, the third of her seven children, is a quiet boy who kept aloof from friends. This won't improve his social life much.


Homosexuality destabilizes society: Vatican paper

The Vatican newspaper said on Tuesday that homosexuality risked "destabilizing people and society", had no social or moral value and could never match the importance of the relationship between a man and a woman.

The remarks were contained in a long commentary published to accompany the official release of a long-awaited document that restricted the access of homosexual men to the Roman Catholic priesthood.

The article by Monsignor Tony Anatrella, a French Jesuit and psychologist, said homosexuality could not be considered an acceptable moral alternative to heterosexuality.


"I'm an abortionist"

Dr. William F. Harrison has forgotten how many children the woman had. He remembers she was poor and, most vividly, he remembers her response when a physician diagnosed her distended stomach as pregnancy."Oh, God, doctor," the woman said. "I was hoping it was cancer."

In 1968 he trained on a maternity ward. In a 24-hour shift, it was not unusual, he said, for four or five women to come in feverish or hemorrhaging from botched abortions.Harrison opened an obstetrics and gynecology practice, but after the Supreme Court established abortion as a constitutional right in 1973, he decided to take on an additional specialty. Now 70, Harrison estimates he's terminated at least 20,000 pregnancies.

Harrison warns every patient he sees that abortion may be illegal one day. He wants to stir them to activism, but most women respond mildly."I can't imagine the country coming to that," says Kim, 35, in for her second abortion in two years. A high school senior says the issue won't weigh heavily when she evaluates candidates. "There's other issues I see as more important," she says, "like whether they'll raise taxes."

He calls himself an "abortionist" and says, "I am destroying life."But he also feels he's giving life: He calls his patients "born again.""When you end what the woman considers a disastrous pregnancy, she has literally been given her life back," he says.

Before giving up obstetrics in 1991, Harrison delivered 6,000 babies. Childbirth, he says, should be joyous; a woman should never consider it a punishment or an obligation."We try to make sure she doesn't ever feel guilty," he says, "for what she feels she has to do."

So what does Dr. Harrison actually do? Harrison glances at an ultrasound screen frozen with an image of the fetus taken moments before his next abortion.

Against the fuzzy black-and-white screen, he sees the curve of a head, the bend of an elbow, the ball of a fist."You may feel some cramping while we suction everything out," Harrison tells the patient. A moment later, he says: "You're going to hear a sucking sound."

The abortion takes two minutes. The patient lies still and quiet, her eyes closed, a few tears rolling down her cheeks. The friend who has accompanied her stands at her side, mutely stroking her arm.

When he's done, Harrison performs another ultrasound. The screen this time is blank but for the contours of the uterus. "We've gotten everything out of there," he says. As the nurse drops the instruments in the sink with a clatter, the teenager looks around, woozy.

"It was a lot easier than I thought it would be," she says. "I thought it would be horrible, but it wasn't. The procedure, that is."She is not yet sure, she says, how she is doing emotionally. She feels guilty, sad and relieved, all in a jumble."There's things wrong with abortion," she says. "But I want to have a good life. And provide a good life for my child." To keep this baby now, she says, when she's single, broke and about to start college, "would be unfair."

Three abortions before lunch and three more after: The appointment book is always full.

LA Times

Abortion on the Docket

To some, a never-enforced New Hampshire law requiring parental notification before a minor has an abortion is a backward step for women's rights. To others, it protects parents' right to know if their child is having an abortion.

The U.S. Supreme Court will consider those arguments Wednesday as it begins to weigh whether to reinstate a law that requires parental notification 48 hours before an abortion can be performed on a woman under the age of 18.

The 2003 law was struck down, days before it was to take effect, for failing to provide an exception to protect a minor's health. Under the law, parents or guardians must be notified either in person or by certified mail.


Homosexuality & The Catholic Church

Homosexulaity and the Catholic Church is about to burst into the media, due to a report about to be published by the Church.

Clayton Emmer posted a comment over at the Openbook blogger that is too important to be overlooked. The subject is the November 12 [2005] conference on human sexuality sponsored by the Archdiocese of Los Angeles. Clayton was one of the attendees. He writes:
Just a taste of what the 30 or so catechists received in the presentation on Gay and Lesbian Catholics:

Dr. Bill Mochon (gay Catholic, aspiring permanent deacon for the archdiocese, and co-director of the Ministry to Gay and Lesbian Catholics) told us that the Bible has nothing to say about homosexuality. The OT passages were related to hospitality, and St. Paul's references were vestiges of the OT habit of avoiding all similarities with pagan practices.

I gather that Clayton is planning to post more details concerning this presentation. Until then, however, I cannot help but attempt to connect some of the dots, at least for myself.
The ludicrous assertion that the Old Testament passages about homosexuality are related to "hospitality" comes straight out of the DIGNITY playbook. DIGNITY considers itself a Catholic organization which is actively working to change the Church's clear and constant teaching that homosexual acts are always intrinsically disordered and gravely sinful.

In 1986, the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith issued a letter on the pastoral care of homosexual persons in which it was stated:

"All support should be withdrawn from any organizations which seek to undermine the teaching of the Church, which are ambiguous about it, or which neglect it entirely. Such support, or even the semblance of such support, can be gravely misinterpreted."

Beware of Reasoning by Historical Analogy

By Dr. Earl Tilford

Thirty years ago, in the wake of the Vietnam War, historian James Clay Thompson warned: the primary lesson learned was that the United States should never again go to war in a former French colony located on the other side of the globe, in a land with a tropical climate, against an insurgent force supported by a sympathetic communist regime in a contiguous state.. Thompson acknowledged the lesson’s limited applicability.

Pennsylvania Democratic Representative John Murtha, a decorated Marine who served in Vietnam, recently dubbed the American effort in Iraq “a flawed policy wrapped in an illusion” and called for a rapid US military withdrawal. Representative Murtha is among many from my generation drawing analogies between Vietnam and the fighting in Iraq.

In late 1971, I returned from Indochina perplexed by my experiences. Over the next fifteen years I wrote a volume in the Air Force’s official history of that conflict, completed a doctorate in military history and then penned two additional books on the war. I also taught courses on the Vietnam War at the Air War College and several civilian universities. While I appreciate lessons history provides, with no disrespect to nineteenth century philosopher Georges Santayana, the past does not repeat itself.

Nevertheless, there are only two ways to approach the future: faith and the study of history. The former, based on things unproven, issues from beliefs and opinions usually flowing subjectively from religious or ideological convictions. History, while open to interpretation, relies on facts, however subject to interpretation those may be. For instance, how the Viet Cong and their North Vietnamese allies defeated the United States remains a matter of historical controversy. Fact is, however, on April 29, 1975 North Vietnamese forces raised a Viet Cong Flag over the Presidential Palace in what is today Ho Chi Minh City.

Four years into the global struggle against al Qaeda and its supporters, US-led forces have planted democracies in Afghanistan and Iraq. Despite barbarous attacks by insurgents and terrorists infiltrated from Iran and Syria, the Iraqis held two elections and ratified a liberal constitution. Polemically-driven carping aside, the US is winning this war.

Nevertheless, Vietnam specters linger for good reasons. With a tip of the hat to Santayana, the current administration’s strategic goals entering this war were as poorly-defined as those of the Kennedy and Johnson administrations in Vietnam. This goes beyond analogies between the Gulf of Tonkin incidents of August 1964 and whether or not President Bush lied about intelligence, “fixed” dubious intelligence to support the case for invading Iraq, or simply acted on bad information. The more egregious mistake was that the administration failed to make a strategically clear case for war. Without clear strategic objectives, the military cannot devise a coherent strategy. Poorly defined strategies cannot be redeemed by firepower or heroic sacrifices. In Vietnam, that was the ultimate reason US policy failed. America’s will evaporated because there were no coherent and clearly established strategic goals to which the public could respond until President Richard M. Nixon provided three limited objectives in 1969: withdrawal of US forces by the end of his first term in office, turning primary responsibility for the prosecution of the war back to the South Vietnamese—a process labeled “Vietnamization,” and the return of American prisoners of war. While the US accomplished only two of those goals, the subsequent fall of South Vietnam testifies to failure of Vietnamization.

However poorly defined, the strategic goal in Vietnam was the preservation of an independent and democratic Republic of Vietnam. Great nations do not go to war so they can retreat and get back their POWs. While the Nixon administration succeeded in the withdrawal part of its strategy and in bringing the POWs home, US forces withdrew before the South Vietnamese were adequately prepared to persevere against a determined foe.

The Vietnam War was a side-show in a larger struggle between the East and West. Likewise, Iraq is a theater in a larger global struggle with al Qaeda, Hezbollah and the nations that support them, primarily Iran and Syria. In Vietnam, Hanoi and the Viet Cong pursued the limited strategic objective of compelling the withdrawal of US forces so they could then unite Vietnam under a single totalitarian socialist regime. Today’s enemy seeks US withdrawal as a first step toward establishing radical Islamic regimes throughout the Middle East. What follows will be a global struggle of unprecedented horror, made more horrible by an enemy likely-armed with—and willing to employ—weapons of mass destruction. While the consequences of losing in Vietnam were comparatively small, the cost of in this war could be catastrophic. More is at stake than the future of Iraq. And the American response must rise above partisan bickering.

Dr. Earl Tilford is Professor of History at Grove City College. He enjoyed an extensive military career and after retiring from the U.S. Air Force, served as an associate professor of history at Troy State University in Montgomery and professor of military history at the U.S. Air Force Air Command and Staff College. In 1993 he became director of research at the U.S. Army's Strategic Studies Institute in Carlisle, Pa., where he worked on a project that looked at possible future terrorist threats. He has authored three books on the Vietnam War and co-edited a book on Operation Desert Storm. He has lectured throughout the U.S. and abroad on the Vietnam War and, more recently, the future of armed conflict.

Cleveland's Terror Imam

The scenario is anything but unique: a local Imam from a local mosque, portrayed as a "moderate Muslim" who publicly denounced terrorism actually facilitated it through his vitriolic, hate-filled speeches and sermons to selected audiences. And as investigation and research shows, he did more than preach hatred and advocate the annihilation of the Jews, Christians and all non-Muslims. While local religious and community leaders were entranced by his charisma and his condemnation of Islamic terrorism, Imam Fawaz DAMRA was engaged in the Islamic tactic of "al-Taqiyya," a Qu'ranic tenant that permits lying and deceiving non-believers to advance the stated goal of radical Muslims - complete world and religious domination through whatever means necessary. This tactic was clearly identified by Cleveland's Plain Dealer reporter Amanda Garrett on February 23, 2003:

"Blood money for deadly bombings of buses and malls in Israel may have been paid for, in part, from a secret fund established in Cleveland, according to a federal indictment unsealed this week.....Damra - who for years portrayed himself as a moderate who tried to bring local Muslims and Jews together - declined to comment Friday. He nearly lost his job shortly after the Sept. 11 terror attacks, when a grainy video emerged showing him with Al-Arian in Cleveland on April 7, 1991."

In another fantastic bit of investigative reporting, Cleveland's Plain Dealer reporter Amanda Garrett provided her readers with more damning evidence about DAMRA in her report dated September 16, 2004:

On Feb. 5, 1993, an FBI agent investigating international terrorism visited Imam Fawaz Damra at his Cleveland mosque, hoping to learn more about a group of Muslim radicals in New York City.Do you know El Sayyid Nosair, the man accused of assassinating the founder of the Jewish Defense League? the agent asked the young cleric.No, Damra answered, according to court documents.How about Mahmoud Abouhalima, one of Nosair's friends?No, Damra replied again.Three weeks later, on Feb. 26, 1993, a truck bomb exploded beneath the World Trade Center.Nosair, it turned out, had helped the bombers, and Abouhalima had masterminded the scheme. And by year's end, Damra had conceded to the FBI that he knew them both.
Research also determined that In the mid-1980s, Fawaz DAMRA co- founded the Alkifah Refugee Center in Brooklyn, N.Y. Like many Alkifah centers around the world, the Brooklyn chapter was assimilated into Osama bin Laden's al-Qaeda network and later fell under the control of Omar Abdul Rahman, also known as the "blind sheik," who was later blamed for the February 26,1993 bombing of the World Trade Center . It has also been widely reported within the recent "Able Danger" revelations that the USSOCOM data mining operation had identified Moahmmed Atta and other members of his cell by name in June 1999 in Brooklyn, New York . Coincidence?

The more radical DAMRA also hid in plain sight as he was invited to speak at the College of Wooster (Ohio) as reported in this February 19, 2004 article by Jihad Watch and excerpted here:

Also disturbing, Wilson adds, is the response some of the more virulently antisemitic [sic] speakers receive. "Fawaz Damra (imam of the Islamic Center of Cleveland and recently cited for lying about his ties to terrorist organizations) was invited here, and while I don't mind having him on campus, I was disturbed that no mention was made of his recent past."
While he's not sure how many students or faculty came to hear Damra, Wilson says there was a "very large turnout of people from the area who cheered him and cheered him."

Cindy Sheehan: A sad, Lonely woman

Anti-war activist Cindy Sheehan waited for someone to show up at her book signing near President Bush's ranch on Saturday, Nov. 26, 2005 in Crawford, Texas. Sheehan, whose 24-year-old son Casey died in Iraq, called for anti-war activists to return to Crawford this week as Bush celebrated the Thanksgiving holiday.

Fifty babies a year are alive after abortion

A british government agency is launching an inquiry into doctors’ reports that up to 50 babies a year are born alive after botched National Health Service abortions.

The investigation, by the Confidential Enquiry into Maternal and Child Health (CEMACH), comes amid growing unease among clinicians over a legal ambiguity that could see them being charged with infanticide. The Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists, which regulates methods of abortion, has also mounted its own investigation.

Its guidelines say that babies aborted after more than 21 weeks and six days of gestation should have their hearts stopped by an injection of potassium chloride before being delivered. In practice, few doctors are willing or able to perform the delicate procedure.

For the abortion of younger foetuses, labour is induced by drugs in the expectation that the infant will not survive the birth process. Guidelines say that doctors should ensure that the drugs they use prevent such babies being alive at birth.

In practice, according to Stuart Campbell, former professor of obstetrics and gynaecology at St George’s hospital, London, a number do survive.

“They can be born breathing and crying at 19 weeks’ gestation,” he said. “I am not anti-abortion, but as far as I am concerned this is sub-standard medicine.”

The Sunday Times

Moving Backwards

As some fight to remove God from this country it's interesting to see What role God played in the infancy of America. In the first official “Thanksgiving” proclamation our first President and Commander-In-Chief invoked the name of God 13 times in the 4 sentences of this proclamation. That certainly leaves very little doubt about the nature of his proclamation, doesn’t it? What would our founding fathers think of some Americans today? Here is that proclamation:

Whereas it is the duty of all nations to acknowledge the providence of Almighty God, to obey His will, to be grateful for His benefits, and humbly to implore His protection and favor; and Whereas both Houses of Congress have, by their joint committee, requested me to "recommend to the people of the United States a day of public thanksgiving and prayer, to be observed by acknowledging with grateful hearts the many and signal favors of Almighty God, especially by affording them an opportunity peaceably to establish a form of government for their safety and happiness:"

Now, therefore, I do recommend and assign Thursday, the 26th day of November next, to be devoted by the people of these States to the service of that great and glorious Being who is the beneficent author of all the good that was, that is, or that will be; that we may then all unite in rendering unto Him our sincere and humble thanks for His kind care and protection of the people of this country previous to their becoming a nation; for the signal and manifold mercies and the favorable interpositions of His providence in the course and conclusion of the late war; for the great degree of tranquility, union, and plenty which we have since enjoyed; for the peaceable and ration al manner in which we have been enable to establish constitutions of government for our safety and happiness, and particularly the national one now lately instituted for the civil and religious liberty with which we are blessed, and the means we have of acquiring and diffusing useful knowledge; and, in general , for all the great and various favors which He has been pleased to confer upon us.

And al so that we may then unite in most humbly offering our prayers and supplications to the great Lord and Ruler of Nations and beseech Him to pardon our national and other transgressions; to enable us all, whether in public or private stations, to perform our several and relative duties properly and punctually; to render our National Government a blessing to all the people by constantly being a Government of wise, just, and constitutional laws, discreetly and faithfully executed and obeyed; to protect and guide all sovereigns and nations (especially such as have shown kindness to us), and to bless them with good governments, peace, and concord; to promote the knowledge and practice of true religion and virtue, and the increase of science among them and us; and, generally to grant unto all mankind such a degree of temporal prosperity as He al one knows to be best.

Given under my hand, at the city of New York , the 3d day of October, A.D. 1789.

Bishop Wuerl on New Catechetical Tools (Part 1)

In an effort to make Church teachings more accessible to modern Catholics, the Compendium of the Catechism of the Catholic Church is being released in English in early 2006.

Bishop Donald Wuerl -- chairman of the American bishops' editorial oversight board for the U.S. Catholic Catechism for Adults and a member of the bishops' Committee on Catechesis -- is heralding the Compendium as a concise yet complete presentation of the faith.

You can read part 1 of the interview here

Another Flag on the Pray!

If you thought that the explanation given by a group of Muslims to security officials at the Meadowlands on September 19, 2005 (Read post here) strained credulity, you might find yourself equally or perhaps more mystified at the end result.

Are you read for this? PowerBlog has learned an area at Giant's Stadium - as well as the Continental Airlines Arena - is scheduled to be designated a "prayer area" at the behest of Muslims. George Zoffinger, the president of the New Jersey Sports and Exposition Authority, said he agreed to designate areas to pray at the football stadium and the nearby Continental Airlines Arena in response to a complaint of "religious profiling."

So Long Sam

Sam, the dog whose ugliness earned him TV appearances, his own website, limousine rides and even a meeting with millionaire Donald Trump, has died.

The pooch with the hairless body, crooked teeth and sparse tuft of hair atop his knobby head died Friday, just short of his 15th birthday, said his owner, Susie Lockheed.

"I don't think there'll ever be another Sam," she said, adding wryly, "Some people would think that's a good thing."
(Watch Sam's bizarre gait and hear him howl -- 3:04) If you dare.

I know Sam is in a better place. Where he will no longer creep me out. That's unless some goof posts his picture on a blog.

Deaths After Abortion Pill to Be Studied

Federal drug regulators have discovered that all four women in this country who died after taking an abortion pill suffered from a rare and highly lethal bacterial infection, a finding that is leading to new scrutiny of the drug's safety.

Since all four deaths occurred in California, an unusual clustering, the Food and Drug Administration quietly tested to see if abortion pills distributed in California were somehow contaminated. They were not.

Stumped, officials from the F.D.A. and the federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention have decided to convene a scientific meeting early next year to discuss this medical mystery, according to two drug agency officials who spoke on the condition of anonymity because of the sensitivity of the topic.

Among other issues, the experts hope to explore whether the abortion pill, called Mifeprex or RU-486, somehow makes patients vulnerable to an infection with Clostridium sordellii, the lethal bacteria. If so, they will explore how such an infection "could be more easily diagnosed and even prevented," one official said.

Monty Patterson, whose daughter Holly died on Sept. 17, 2003, less than a month after her 18th birthday, said he believed that Mifeprex inhibits the immune system, making women more vulnerable to bacteria.

Mr. Patterson's campaign against Mifeprex helped persuade the family of at least one other woman who died to have tissue samples tested for the presence of the rare bacteria, he said.
"I believe this drug should be taken off the market," Mr. Patterson said.

NY Times

Church dissolved over homosexual issue

A congregation that refused to pay its dues in protest of the Episcopal Church of the USA's ordination of a homosexual bishop has been dissolved by its diocese.

Rochester's Episcopal diocese in New York voted Saturday to shut down All Saints Episcopal Church in Irondequoit, according to the Rochester Democrat and Chronicle newspaper.

The church's property and other assets are to be turned over to the trustees of the diocese. The church refused to pay $16,000 it owed the diocese after the 2003 ordination of Bishop Gene Robinson in New Hampshire – a practicing homosexual – and the denomination's decision to give individual dioceses liberty to bless same-sex unions.

All Saints plans to continue operating and possibly be a home for others in the diocese who disagree with the Episcopal Church of the USA.

Vatican gay document prompts criticism

A new Vatican document on homosexuality in the Catholic priesthood touched off a storm of criticism on Wednesday from those who say the Church is missing the point and using gays as scapegoats for its sex scandals.

The document, which says the Church can admit those who have clearly overcome homosexual tendencies for at least three years, is due to be released officially next week.

But it said practicing homosexuals and those with "deep-seated" gay tendencies and those who support a gay culture should be barred, a stand which was welcomed by conservatives both in the Catholic Church and in other religions.



FORT MYERS BEACH -- A naked man was accidentally shocked in the genitals by a Taser after he was found breaking windows and asking women to touch him inappropriately, police said.

Jeremy J. Miljour, 26, of Bonita Springs, attempted to run when approached by Lee County sheriff's deputies Saturday. When he ignored requested to stop, Deputy Daniel Hollywood shot Miljour with a Taser.

One of the Taser prongs accidentally hit Miljour's genitals and got stuck, said Cpl. Matt Chitwood. Officers are taught to aim for the torso, but it was difficult for officers to aim because Miljour was moving, Chitwood said.

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Catholic School Fires Unmarried Pregnant Teacher

An unmarried teacher is charging a Queens Catholic school with discrimination after she was fired for becoming pregnant out of wedlock.

The New York Civil Liberties Union yesterday filed a complaint with the federal Equal Opportunity Employment Commission on behalf of Michelle McCusker, 26, who was dismissed by the St. Rose of Lima School in Rockaway Beach last month.

The school, which is run by the Brooklyn Archdiocese, told Ms. McCusker it was firing her because she had violated the "precepts and doctrines of the Catholic church" by becoming pregnant out of wedlock. In the complaint, Ms. McCusker and the NYCLU claim the firing was an act of gender discrimination because the school's policy can only be enforced against women.
"The school determined that Ms. Mc-Cusker violated Catholic doctrine only because they discovered her pregnancy," an attorney for the NYCLU, Cassandra Stubbs, said. St. Rose of Lima couldn't do the same for male employees, she said: "For example, does the school question its male employees about their sexual practices? How does the school punish male employees for engaging in nonmarital sex?"

A spokesman for the archdiocese, Frank DeRosa, said teachers at the school are required, as outlined in a personnel handbook, to abide by Catholic teachings, both in words and actions. "This is a difficult situation for every person involved," Mr. DeRosa said, "but the school had no choice but to follow the principles contained in the teachers' personnel handbook."

With her parents standing at her side, Ms. McCusker, speaking to reporters on her 26th birthday, cried as she recalled her short tenure at the school. She was hired in September to teach pre-kindergartners. A month later, she told the school's principal, Theresa Andersen, that she was three months pregnant and did not plan to get married. Ms. Andersen initially "made it seem like it was fine," and told her of a similar situation in which a pregnant teacher got married and was allowed to keep her job, Ms. McCusker said.

Two days later, however, the principal met again with Ms. McCusker and told her that she was being dismissed. Ms. Andersen also sent Ms. McCusker an official termination notice, which, the principal wrote, "was probably the most difficult letter I've ever had to write."

"The way you live your life must witness the precepts and doctrines of the Catholic church," Ms. Andersen stated in the letter. "When a situation becomes evident that a teacher's life cannot witness what the Catholic church teaches, then termination of contract must occur."

"May your child be born healthy, knowing God's loving care," the letter concluded. Ms. McCusker, who lives in Nassau County, said she knew she could be fired when she told the school of her pregnancy, but the dismissal still came as a surprise. "I held the Catholic religion to a higher standard, I guess," she said. "I thought the church was more forgiving than judgmental."

The New York Sun

Our Lady of the Night?

A German brothel owner is planning to build his own multi-denominational church.
Bert Wollersheim, 54, who has over 50 prostitutes working for him, plans to preach from the pulpit himself.

Wollersheim, one of Germany's best known pimps, wants to speak out against fanaticism.
He said: "I want it to be a place for Christians, Muslims, Buddhists, Hindus and every other religion. That is my biggest dream."

He added he had no problem reconciling the sex industry with religion and often threw charity events in his brothel.

"You can work as whatever you want. What is important is to be honest and fair," he said.

LDS Church liable in girls' abuse

In a decision that could reverberate through clergy sexual-abuse cases everywhere, a King County Superior Court jury has awarded $4.2 million to two sisters who were sexually abused for years by their stepfather, a Mormon priest.

The civil jury found The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, commonly referred to as the Mormon church, liable for intentional misconduct and negligence and ordered the church to pay most of the award. The remainder of the award would be paid by the girls' abuser, Peter N. Taylor, who is no longer their stepfather or a priest.

Seattle Times

Target of Boycott

A traditional-values organization says nearly 300,000 people have signed its online petition calling for a boycott of Target stores during the launch of the Christmas shopping season this weekend.

The American Family Association wants shoppers to avoid the retailer during the most important shopping weekend because of its continuing ban on Salvation Army bell ringers and shunning of the phrase "Merry Christmas" in in-store promotions and advertising.

Alito Stands Tall on Religious Liberties

Judge Samuel Alito Jr. was perhaps best known as a defender of religious liberty before his nomination to the Supreme Court.

In 15 years as a federal appellate judge, he consistently articulated a broad interpretation of the First Amendment clauses pertaining to religion.

He has written that the Establishment Clause does not prohibit government acknowledgement of religion, and has held that the Free Exercise Clause gives wide berth to citizens and employees against government restrictions on their religious practices.
Both supporters and opponents of his nomination agree that if confirmed, he would likely become the court’s strongest voice on religious issues.

Falwell fighting for holy holiday

Evangelical Christian pastor Jerry Falwell has a message for Americans when it comes to celebrating Christmas this year: You're either with us, or you're against us.

Falwell has put the power of his 24,000-member congregation behind the "Friend or Foe Christmas Campaign," an effort led by the conservative legal organization Liberty Counsel. The group promises to file suit against anyone who spreads what it sees as misinformation about how Christmas can be celebrated in schools and public spaces.

An additional 800 attorneys from another conservative legal group, the Alliance Defense Fund, are standing by as part of a similar effort, the Christmas Project. Its slogan: "Merry Christmas. It's OK to say it."

Organizers of the Christmas campaigns say many Christians feel aggrieved by the secularization of the season. They say teachers feel too intimidated to allow students to sing "Silent Night" in school, and they believe cities have every right to place a nativity scene in a public park.

San Francisco Chronicle

Murtha Madness

Shaun Pierce

The media is all a buzz over Congressman John Murtha's (D-Penn.) call for the removal of American troops from Iraq. Yes, the guy is a war hero and served this country bravely in Vietnam, but a medal does not make you infallible. While I respect and honor his past service, the guy is wrong.

Murtha denounced the war in Iraq more than a year ago. He has been expressing disgust with the Bush administration and their prosecution of this war since six months after it started. Yet the story now is a big war supporter is jumping ship. It's a lie.

Murtha has the right to express his opinion as all Americans do. However, I'm appalled that he would use his office to undermine the efforts of our troops. For an elected official to stand in front of the cameras and say "Our military is suffering. The future of our country is at risk" is irresponsible and endangers our troops. Once that soundbite plays around the world, it will only serve to embolden the enemy. Congressman Murtha should hang his head in shame.

If any lesson was learned in Vietnam, it's politicians need to stay out of the way, and let the troops get the job done. Congressman Murtha of all people should know that.

Mutha's comments, "The future of our military is at risk. Our military and their families are stretched thin" is an invitation for more acts of terrorism. A perception of weakness endangers us all.

I would much rather see the war on terror, the war for oil, the war on Islam or whatever war label you want to put on it, fought in Iraq rather than on our soil. I don't care how long it takes. Our troops coming home right now would not end the war. It would mean the terrorists would have to travel a bit further. The front line is in Iraq. On 9/11 it was in New York. Let's keep things the way they are Congressman. Step aside and let our troops finish the job.

Heretic Idol

There is no shortage of church splits or countless variations of "Christianity" today. Each one questioning and challenging the next. I was asked recently what role I thought Martin Luther played in our modern denominational divisions. To consider that question in any public manner invites an entire spectrum of response.

To many protestants Martin Luther is not only a hero, but at the core of their understanding of Scripture and God. They claim Luther got it right and the Catholic church should have listened to him. If only the Catholic church would have bowed to Luther, we would all be united today. Somehow, I doubt it.

Luther saw himself as a great reformer of the Catholic church. He believed his ideas would single-handedly redirect the church. History has shown he failed in that mission. I think it is only fair to ask, if Luther was being led by the Holy Spirit, would he have failed in such a divine mission?

The result of Luther and his campaign has deeply divided Christianity. His challenge forged two separate churches. The second division, Protestantism, which hold Luther as their second founder, has gone on to divide over four centuries into a near infinity of separate churches.

I don't doubt for a moment that Luther really believed what he proclaimed. I do question where he drew his authority? He earned a doctorate in theology from the University of Wittenberg. Yet he began to develop his own personal theology, which erupted into outright blasphemy when he protested the use of indulgences in his 95 Theses.

Indulgences, which were granted by the pope, forgave individual sinners not their sins, but the temporal punishment applied to those sins. It was big bushiness back then. It was the main source of income to the church and it did not sit well with many. It's one thing to challenge the fund raising methods of the church, but Luther did much more than that.

His theological arguments against the use of indulgences, were based on the notion that Christianity is fundamentally a phenomenon of the inner world of human beings and had little or nothing to do with the outer world. It is this fundamental argument, not the controversy of the indulgences themselves, that most people in the church disapproved of.

When the focus turned to the spiritual value of "good works," that is, the actions that people do in this world to benefit others and to pay off the debts they've incurred against God by sinning, Luther ran. The split began as the northern humanists embraced Luther and his ideas and abandoned up until that time, the only Christian church.

Luther's first writing was "The Sermon on Good Works". He argued that good works do not benefit the soul; only faith could do such. Pope Leo declared 41 articles of Luther's teachings as heretical teachings, and Luther's books were publicly burned in Rome. Did Luther reach out and seek understanding in a loving Christian manner? No. He pressed for the German nation to use military means to force the church to reform.

In 1521, the Holy Roman Emperor, Charles V, demanded that Luther recant his claims. Failing to submit to authority, Luther refused and he was placed under an imperial ban as an outlaw. He developed his new church, a bitter and angry man hidden away in a castle in Wartburg .

Luther wrote a letter to Pope Leo explaining the substance of his ideas, "Von der Freiheit des Christenmenschen". That to failed. Luther was excommunicated from the church in 1521. What had started as an attempt to reform the church, turned into a new creation independent of the Catholic church. The fact that most forget is, was it not for the Catholic church, Luther would not have been introduced to Christianity or the Word of God from which he based his objections.

Luther planted the dangerous seeds of "custom theology". He brought forth the concept that man need not follow a single authority, but his own understanding and personal knowledge of God. If the the objections of Luther were valid, then it would be the shepherds of the flock that should tremble before God. Luther invited us all to choose not only our own Shepard, but flock, field, food and demand that our Christian leaders submit to the will of the people.

There are people who worship God. There are also people who worship idols they call God. We all think the other is wrong. All I can tell you is truth is not plural. Luther makes us choose.

Pope blesses 'John Paul' TV movie

The cavernous Paul VI Hall was near capacity with about 6,000 on hand for the reduced version of the three-part series that will air December 4-6 on CBS.

"I would like to extend my gratitude to the actors for honoring the memory of my illustrious and loved predecessor," the pope said following the screening. "Viewing this film has reopened my gratitude to God for providing us with a pope both so human and so spiritual. . . . I welcome the distribution of this film."

I have no idea if popcorn was served.

Hollywood Reporter

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Call in your pledge to 1-866-4-WORD-FM, or click here to donate on-line.

No doubt Saddam had WMDs

The producer of a new documentary on Saddam Hussein says there is no question that Saddam Hussein possessed weapons of mass destruction.

The real question he says, should be: Where did they go? (Gee, where have I heard that before?)

Former real estate broker Brad L. Maaske interviewed dozens of Iraqis in producing his film "Weapon of Mass Destruction: The Murderous Reign of Saddam Hussein." He says it is absurd that prominent Democrats, including a former U.S. president, continue to say the former dictator did not possess WMDs.

"There's interview after interview of people who say they saw truckloads of something going out through Syria and into the Bekaa Valley of Lebanon," he recalls. "And of course we've tried to track that as best we can. The U.S. military can't go into Syria; it can't go into Lebanon. But the question is: Where did those weapons go?"

There didn't have to be massive stockpiles of chemicals," he explains. "A few 55-gallon drums of a nerve gas could kill a million people if properly dispersed, so it's not that difficult for him to get rid of what he had."

The documentary, now available on DVD, exposes the historical facts about Saddam's rise to power, his world-defiant reign of terror, and the events leading to his demise. More than mere facts and figures, the work brings to life faces, names, and stories that encompass the unimaginable 1.3 million lives exterminated by Saddam's reign of terror.

Terri's Watch: Clinton says Americans 'reluctant to get to heaven'

I'm really glad this guy didn't run our country or anything. Bill Says living wills 'will help to deal with the health-care crisis'.

In making a point about the importance of having a living will, ex-President Bill Clinton remarked that religious Americans are apparently hypocrites for having a fear of death.
"It's interesting to me that we always proclaim – especially certain numbers of us – that we're the most religious big country in the world," said Clinton. "It may be true, but we also seem to be the most reluctant to get to heaven."

The remark came at a speech this month before an audience of 5,000 at the University of Minnesota in Minneapolis, and was greeted by laughter and applause.
"Look, I only halfway mean that in the sense that I think that everyone has a moral obligation to live as long and as well as he or she can," Clinton continued. "But I do think the living will will help to deal with the health-care crisis."

The impeached president mentioned the case of Terri Schiavo, the brain-injured Florida woman who was starved to death by court order after a long legal battle between her parents and her husband, Michael.

"We spend far more money on the last two months of life than any other country," Clinton noted. "And I think the only answer to that and maybe the good thing that came out of the terrible agony of the Schiavo family that we were all treated to for weeks is that amazing numbers of Americans including Hillary and me ... did living wills. We'd been wanting to do it a long time. We just kept puttin' it off and puttin' it off, and I saw that [tragedy] unfold and I said 'You know, I don't want to see Chelsea on television like that. Let's do the living will.'"

Europeans lowercase 'Christ'

Thanks to The Unseen Blogger

A new grammar rule devised in the Netherlands and Belgium stipulates the word "Christ" shall be spelled with a lowercase "c."
The rule was part of a Dutch orthography reform published in October, reported Canada Free Press.

The paper cites a German newssite,, in reporting that the new guidelines also indicate the Dutch word for "Jews" (Joden) is to be spelled with a capital "J" when referring to nationality and with a lower-case "j" when referring to the religion.
The changes – made by the main linguistic authority for the Dutch language, Nederlandse Taalunie – become mandatory next August.

Howard Stern Too Filthy for Canada

Despite his claims of being the "King of All Media,” it appears Howard Stern will not reign in Canada. When the foul-mouthed shock jock begins broadcasting on Sirius Satellite Radio in January, the radio signals will not connect with listeners in the Great White North.

Apparently, Stern is too filthy for Canada, home of the Canadian Broadcast Standards Council.
According to the Toronto Sun newspaper, Canada - unlike the United States - requires satellite radio providers to be licensed by the Canadian equivalent of the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) – the Canadian Radio-Television Telecommunications Commission (CRTC). One Canadian radio CEO told the Sun that Stern would not be worth the gamble or the controversy.


Not a surprise with so many shows highlighting Texas Hold ‘em. (ABC News) When you type in “Texas Hold ‘em” in “Froogle” you get over 9,000 results. (Froogle) Toys R Us sells a Texas Hold ‘em set for kids “8 – 12.” (Toys R Us)


The GOP website now has video proof, including clips from Madeleine Albright, Bill Clinton, Howard Dean, Sandy Berger, Nancy Pelosi, Jay Rockefeller, Joe Biden, Harry Reid, Hillary Clinton, John Edwards and Evan Bayh. Did they think nobody would whip these out? Or were they just certain (and correct, it seems so far) that the mainstream media wouldn’t? (GOP)


Catholic League president Bill Donohue commented today as follows:

“I am asking Roman Catholics all over the nation to make a Thanksgiving Day appeal to New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg regarding the request of those families who lost their loved ones in the World Trade Center (WTC) attack of September 11, 2001: please accede to the plea of ‘WTC Families for Proper Burial’ (click here for more info) so that this group can disband. Since 9/11, these families have yet to be afforded a respectful burial for their kin. It is only fitting that this unconscionable condition come to an end this Thanksgiving.

“It is hard to believe that more than four years after this national tragedy, these families are still being denied a proper burial for their loved ones. The remains of more than 1,200 victims of 9/11 who could not be identified are deposited in the Fresh Kills garbage dump on Staten Island. The families of 9/11 have been told that the remains—including identifiable body parts and personal effects—could be retrieved for a proper burial. But to date, nothing has been done to satisfy their request.

“Norman Siegel, a noted New York City attorney and civil liberties advocate, is a man of great courage and conviction; he is also a personal friend of mine. Because of the recalcitrance on the part of the Bloomberg administration, he was forced to file suit on August 15, 2005 in pursuit of a proper burial; the case is scheduled to be heard December 8.

“As Catholics know, August 15 is the Feast of the Assumption, and December 8 is the Feast of the Immaculate Conception; these are two holy days of obligation honoring Our Blessed Mother. It would be so great if Mayor Bloomberg were to take advantage of a national feast day, Thanksgiving, and put an end to this issue by doing the right thing.”

Contact Mayor Bloomberg:
City Hall, NY, NY 10007 or

No More Narnia!

May I climb on my soapbox for a moment?

Every time I go to my mailbox there is another book about C.S. Lewis and the "Chronicles of Narnia” books. Must we really write books about books? Worse yet, now they are writting books about people who wrote books. Currently I am looking at 7 books on my desk about Lewis. Those are just the one's on my desk! I'm sure once the Disney movie comes out I'll have the C.S. Lewis plush doll included in my child's happy meal.

I have nothing against the book series. It's great. But that's does not mean I need one hundred other books to support the first. In case you feel otherwise, here is a partial list to keep you busy the rest of your life:

“Step into Narnia: A Journey Through The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe”By E.J. Kirk
“Beyond the Wardrobe: The Official Guide to Narnia”By E.J. Kirk
“So You Think You Know Narnia?”By Clive Gifford
“The Magical Worlds of Narnia: The Treasury of Myths and Legends”By David Colbert
“Companion to Narnia, Revised Edition: A Complete Guide to the Magical World of C.S. Lewis’s The Chronicles of Narnia”By Paul F. Ford
“Pocket Companion to Narnia: A Guide to the Magical World of C.S. Lewis”By Paul F. Ford
“C.S. Lewis: The Boy Who Chronicled Narnia”By Michael White
“Cameras in Narnia: How The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe Came to Life”By Ian Brodie
“The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe: The Movie Storybook”By Kate Egan
“The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe: Edmund and the White Witch”By Scout Driggs
“The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe: Tea with Mr. Tumnus”By Jennifer Frantz
“The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe: The Quest for Aslan”By Jasmine Jones
“The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe: The Creatures of Narnia”By Scout Driggs
“The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe: Activity Book with Gel Pen”By Sadie Chesterfield
The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe: Coloring and Activity Book and Magnets”By Julia Simon-Kerr
“The Chronicles of Blarnia”By Michael Gerber

There's more, but you get the point.

Using Rosa Parks

By Rev. Jesse Lee Peterson

Nearly every liberal demagogue alive showed up at Rosa Parks' funeral to score political points, including the Clintons, Jesse Jackson, Al Sharpton, Louis Farrakhan, and NAACP leaders.

Rosa Parks became the first woman to lie in honor in the Capitol Rotunda, sharing the tribute bestowed upon Abraham Lincoln, John F. Kennedy, and other national leaders. Her funeral lasted seven hours! Jesse Jackson – of all people – delivered the eulogy, and called for a life-size statue of Rosa Parks to be erected in the halls of Congress.

I have no issue with Rosa Parks. But I do have an issue with liberals trying to canonize her in order to glorify themselves, and legitimize their route to "progress" through political and racial agitation instead of hard work and character.

Current liberal black leaders have accomplished nothing of value. They are like parasites, living off the legacy of Dr. King. In contrast, the black and white freedom fighters of the civil-rights era were men and women of character.

Jesse Jackson and other liberal black leaders never encourage black Americans to do better. They're motivated by greed for power and money, which can only be fed if blacks stay dependent – i.e., stay Democrats. Why else turn Rosa Parks' funeral into a political opportunity instead of a celebration of courage?

The legacy and name of Rosa Parks will continue to be used to advance the aims of the corrupt liberal elite, specifically in the lead-up to the 2006 elections. Shame on them and their pretense of love for Rosa and for America.

Full Commentary

Baby on Board

A pregnant woman ticketed for driving in the carpool lane will have her day in court next month to argue that her unborn child counts as a second person in the car.

"I understand the reasoning for the HOV lane," said Candace Dickinson, 23. "But whether my son is in a car seat versus in my stomach, I don’t get it. It’s the same thing."

The near-full-term woman was driving to work on Interstate 10 last week when a Phoenix police officer pulled her over. "He asked how many people were in the car with me, and I said, ‘Two’ and he said ‘No, one.’ I said I was nine months pregnant and had my son in the car with me," she said. "The way the law is written, he can occupy the vehicle without occupying a seat."

This should be interesting............

East Valley Trib

Democrats Modifying Abortion Stance

If you can't beat em'.......

The Democrats are so intent on unseating Republicans in Congress next year that they’re even moderating their strong pro-choice stance on abortion.

Case in point: The party has chosen Robert Casey Jr., who is pro-life, to run against Pennsylvania Sen. Rick Santorum, the third-ranking GOP member of the Senate and the Democrats’ chief target in the 2006 election.

Writing in The New Yorker, Peter J. Boyer reveals that New York Sen. Charles Schumer – chairman of the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee – told him: "When we sat down and looked at the map we said our No. 1 take-back seat would be Pennsylvania.”
Schumer asked the advice of Pennsylvania Gov. Edward G. Rendell, who Schumer says told him: "There’s only one guy who can beat [Santorum]. But he doesn’t want to run, and you guys wouldn’t want him even if he did. He’s not pro—choice.”

State Treasurer Casey is not only pro-life, he’s linked in many Pennsylvanians’ minds with his father Robert P. Casey, who as governor of the state promoted and signed the Pennsylvania Abortion Control Act.

Turning the Democratic Party away from a staunch pro-choice position has not been an easy task. When Tom Roemer, a former congressman from Indiana, campaigned to become chairman of the Democratic National Committee, his platform included "tolerance of differing views on abortion,” Boyer reports. Pro-choice activists lined up behind Howard Dean and against Roemer, and Dean won out.

Bible Ban Controversy Swirls

It’s the controversy about religion on campus that won’t go away, with fresh salvos fired today from both sides.

On July 26, an University of Wisconsin–Eau Claire (UWEC) administrator banned resident assistants (RAs) from leading private, non-school-sponsored Bible studies in their dorms out of concern that students might feel "judged” and that Bible study–leading RAs might not be sufficiently "approachable.”

Undergraduate RA Lance Steiger contacted the Foundation for Individual Rights in Education (FIRE), which on October 10 asked UWEC Interim Chancellor Vicki Lord Larson to lift the Bible study ban. Receiving no response, FIRE took the case public on November 2, resulting in public outcry and condemnation of the policy from state and national lawmakers.

Adrian Rogers, dies at 74

Adrian Rogers, 74, pastor emeritus of Bellevue Baptist Church in Cordova, Tenn., and a former president of Southern Baptist Convention passed away in the early hours of Nov. 15 after battling cancer and double-pneumonia.

The following announcement was made at 5:30 a.m. (CT) on the Web site of the ministry Rogers founded, Love Worth Finding (

“Dr. Adrian Rogers, Founder of Love Worth Finding Ministries, pastor Emeritus of Bellevue Baptist Church and a gifted man of God passed away in the presence of the Lord early this morning after battling cancer and double pneumonia."
“I imagine literally thousands who came to know Jesus because of his ministry met him at the gate as he stepped over to glory and beheld the face of Jesus.”
More details will be announced later. The Love Worth Finding Web site asks readers to “continue to pray for the Rogers’ family.”

Hey Remember those WMD's in Iraq?

The debate and accusations of "Bush Lied" are tossed around the media like confetti these days. I have had people pull the old "I told ya so" out of their liberal pockets and shove it in my face.

They forget about the mass graves that were found with women and children in them. Did Saddam kill them withy a pocket knife one by one. NO! We know has gassed the Kurds. Lethel use of poison gas on a large group of people to me clearly equals WMD.

I remember watching Colin Powell stand before the UN and play a tape of an intercepted conversation for the world to hear.

Here's how Powell introduced his case on Feb. 5, 2003:

POWELL: Let me begin by playing a tape for you. What you're about to hear is a conversation that my government monitored. It takes place on November 26 [2002], on the day before United Nations teams resumed inspections in Iraq. The conversation involves two senior officers, a colonel and a brigadier general, from Iraq's elite military unit, the Republican Guard.

IRAQI COLONEL : About this committee that is coming with [U.N. nuclear weapons inspector] Mohamed ElBaradei.
IRAQI GENERAL : Yeah, yeah.
COL: We have this modified vehicle. What do we say if one of them sees it?
GEN: You didn't get a modified... You don't have a modified...
COL: By God, I have one.
GEN: Which? From the workshop...?
COL: From the al-Kindi Company
GEN: Yeah, yeah. I'll come to you in the morning. I have some comments. I'm worried you all have something left.
COL: We evacuated everything. We don't have anything left. [END OF POWELL TAPE EXCERPT]

What type of "modified vehicle" do Iraq war critics think Saddam's general was worried about? A souped-up 1967 Mustang?

And what, pray tell, do they think Saddam's colonel was referring to when he said, "We evacuated everything. We don't have anything left"?

Just because we have not found the type or amount of WMD's in Iraq, does not mean they were not there. The question we should be asking is not who is to blame but where did they go?

Five questions non-Muslims would like answered

This was written by Dennis Prager. It certainly desevers a post here.

The rioting in France by primarily Muslim youths and the hotel bombings in Jordan are the latest events to prompt sincere questions that law-abiding Muslims need to answer for Islam's sake, as well as for the sake of worried non-Muslims. Here are five of them:

(1) Why are you so quiet? Since the first Israelis were targeted for death by Muslim terrorists blowing themselves up in the name of your religion and Palestinian nationalism, I have been praying to see Muslim demonstrations against these atrocities. There are a billion Muslims in the world. How is it possible that essentially none have demonstrated against evils perpetrated by Muslims in the name of Islam?

(2) Why are none of the Palestinian terrorists Christian?If Israeli occupation is the reason for Muslim terror in Israel, why do no Christian Palestinians engage in terror?

(3) Why is only one of the 47 Muslim-majority countries a free country?According to Freedom House, a Washington-based group that promotes democracy, of the world's 47 Muslim countries, only Mali is free.

(4) Why are so many atrocities committed and threatened by Muslims in the name of Islam?Young girls in Indonesia were recently beheaded by Muslim murderers. Last year, Muslims — in the name of Islam — murdered hundreds of schoolchildren in Russia. While reciting Muslim prayers, Islamic terrorists take foreigners working to make Iraq free and slaughter them. Muslim daughters are murdered by their own families in the thousands in "honor killings." And the Muslim government in Iran has publicly called for the extermination of Israel.

(5) Why do countries governed by religious Muslims persecute other religions?No church or synagogue is allowed in Saudi Arabia. The Taliban destroyed some of the greatest sculptures of the ancient world because they were Buddhist. Sudan's Islamic regime has murdered great numbers of Christians.

Hundreds of millions of non-Muslims want honest answers to these questions, even if the only answer you offer is, "Yes, we have real problems in Islam." Such an acknowledgment is infinitely better — for you and for the world — than dismissing us as anti-Muslim. We await your response.


From the story: “At the 102 members of the Council of Christian Colleges and Universities, primarily Protestant and largely evangelical, enrollment surged 70.6 percent from 1990 to 2004. That compares with 28 percent for all independent four-year schools, and 12.8 percent for all public, four-year campuses, according to data from the National Association of Independent Colleges and Universities.”

Boston Globe



Among many documents released today. (Washington Times) It’s early, but Alito is already gaining public support. (Gallup) Trying to stem the tide, the AFL-CIO, NAACP and other far left groups are preparing ads against Alito. (Boston Globe)

You know it was Coming" 'In God We Trust" to come off money?

Michael Newdow, perhaps America's best known atheist, has a new target in his personal war against God in the public domain: "In God We Trust" on U.S. money.

"I am about to file to get 'In God We Trust' off the front of our currency," he told the Oklahoman. "I plan to do that this week."

"The key principle is that we're supposed to treat everybody equally especially in terms of religious belief," Newdow told KWTV in Oklahoma City. "Clearly it's not treating atheists equal with people who believe in God when you say 'In God We Trust' or we are a 'nation under God.'"
"People say, 'Are you an atheist activist?' And I'm not," he continued. "I couldn't care less what anyone believes. I just care that our government treats everybody equally."

Gore: Global Warming More Serious Than Terrorism

The United States has been waging a war on international terrorism for more than four years, but what does Al Gore think is a more serious issue?

Global warming.

In in interview with Australia's The Age, the 2000 Democratic presidential nominee and former senator drew parallels between those who dispute global warming, and its investment implications, with Neville Chamberlain and others who wanted to appease the Nazis before World War II.

Veterans Day

U.S. Department of Defense Veteran’s Day 2005 Link

Pat Robertson, Take Your Meds

Conservative Christian televangelist Pat Robertson told citizens of a Pennsylvania town that they had rejected God by voting their school board out of office for supporting "intelligent design" and warned them on Thursday not to be surprised if disaster struck. Robertson, a former Republican presidential candidate and founder of the influential conservative Christian Broadcasting Network and Christian Coalition, has a long record of similar apocalyptic warnings and provocative statements. Last summer, he hit the headlines by calling for the assassination of leftist Venezuelan Present Hugo Chavez, one of President George W. Bush's most vocal international critics. "I'd like to say to the good citizens of Dover: if there is a disaster in your area, don't turn to God, you just rejected Him from your city," Robertson said on his daily television show broadcast from Virginia, "The 700 Club."

Jubelirer Sees the Light!

In an abrupt U-turn, the leader of the state Senate yesterday called the legislative pay raise he helped pass this summer a "mistake," apologized to his constituents for adopting it late at night without public notice and vowed to repeal it next week.

Senate President Pro Tem Robert Jubelirer, R-Altoona, told reporters that he recently realized the public's anger over the package wasn't going away and that the issue had become a serious political liability.

For those of your who don't speak politicalese let me translate:
The man noticed his own butt was on the line.

Pointing to the failure of state Supreme Court Justice Russell M. Nigro to retain his seat in Tuesday's elections, Mr. Jubelirer said "there was an anger level by the constituency that I had never seen in 31 years" in the Senate.

Thank you to all who voted and sent the message that we are fed up and ready to fight back!



A machine appears to have malfunctioned.

York Dispatch


Story points out the hypocrisy of Barry Lynn, who was “very much concerned” about the “censorship” of anti-Christian books but wants Narnia ousted.


Must Flee TV

The lastest invasion into my home through that box we call TV is a commerical for chewing gum of all things. I watched some guy on TV eat a piece of this stuff and suddenly some total stranger of a women can't control herslef in public. I'll stick with the Tic-Tac's.

A new study by the Kaiser Family Foundation finds that the number of sex scenes broadcast on TV has doubled in the past seven years. Kaiser found nearly 3,800 scenes with sexual content in 2005, compared to 1,100 such scenes in 1998. That doesn't even count the commericals!

The House passed bills last year and again last February to increase the current maximum penalty for violations of those laws from $32,000 to $500,000. In the current Congress, Sen. Brownback's (R-Kan.) Broadcast Decency Enforcement Act (S. 193), is the counterpart to the House bill that passed in February. Commerce Committee Chairman Sen. Ted Stevens (R-Alaska) has supported stronger indecency rules for television, but he has not yet offered the pending indecency bill a hearing. Please contact your two U.S. Senators. Ask them to press Sen. Stephens to hold hearings on the broadcast decency bill, S. 193. It's time.

The Good News Bad News

A new prenatal test for Down Syndrome is being touted in the media. The Washington Post reports this story. "This is huge," said Catherine Y. Spong of the National Institute of Child Health and Human Development. Spong's agency is part of the National Institutes of Health (NIH) and provided $15 million to fund the study over eight years. The study was done by the Royal College of Surgeons in Dublin, Ireland, where abortion is illegal. Speaking for the Royal College, Fergal Malone said: "This is a big deal for women. It's going to have a big impact on care for women, not just in the United States but throughout the world...Women who would opt to terminate a pregnancy based on the results would be able to do so much earlier, when abortion is less risky and less traumatic."

The new test brought a quick response from Gene Rudd of the Christian Medical & Dental Associations: "What's the goal here? Is it to rid our society of Down babies? It that is the goal, I really have to question the civility of that. The overwhelming number of people with Down will tell you their life is good." So will their parents, their siblings, and all those who love them. The Post goes on to report that "women who test negative will be able to ease their minds much earlier." Here we see once again the constant pro-abortion bias of the major media. Your tax dollars are, in effect, promoting abortion at a foreign research center. Surely, this is not the way to build a culture of life.

An Open Letter to Anglicans

Anglicans from around the world descend on Pittsburgh this weekend. They will discuss the future of the church in light if the recent ordination of a homosexual bishop. I don't know if any Anglicans will read this post but I'd like to offer a few thoughts as a humble Roman Catholic.

I know first hand the pain one can feel, when those entrusted to watch over the souls of the flock, openly defy morals and the clear command of Scripture. The sexual abuse scandal of the Roman Catholic church swung the spotlight on the failing of individuals. Not an entire church or it's faithful members. Yet that is not the way it was presented to the world. Something very similar has happened to the Anglicans.

I believe the best way to attack the church would be to do it from the inside out. It is clear to see that every Christian denomination is now under attack in some way. It is up to the faithful lay people and clergy to stand guard at the gates. We have been promised that the the enemy will not prevail. No where in Scripture are we promised that we would not have to fight to make it so.

It would of course be my desire for this to unite all true Christians. The more believers divide and isolate themselves, the weaker we become. Yet one should not compromise Christian beliefs to inflate membership. Nor should one wavier in the interest of retaining a building or funds.

Anglicans must be aware that the fruit of this conference will not only determine the course the church will follow, it will impact countless generations. The salvation of millions is being decided. It is no less a matter. I pray that the true servants of God will prevail and the Lord will use this to bring all believers to unity.

Bush meets Dalai Lama

President George W. Bush met at the White House on Wednesday with the Dalai Lama, exiled spiritual leader of Tibetan Buddhists, ignoring objections from China 10 days before he makes an official visit to Beijing.

The private meeting with the president and the first lady came one day after the Bush administration named China a serious violator of religious freedom in a report to Congress.
"We've made our views very clear when it comes to our support for religious freedom... And we will continue to speak out on those issues," said White House spokesman Scott McClellan. The Chinese government opposed Bush's meeting with the Dalai Lama.


Jesus Themepark

Officials in Israel say that out of about 2 million people who will realize their dream of visiting the Holy Land this year, more than half will be Christian. And among those, more than half will be Evangelical.

With that in mind, the Israeli ministry of tourism has gone public with a plan to build - in partnership primarily with American Evangelical churches - a sprawling Holy Land Christian Center on the northern shores of the Sea of Galilee, home to some of the most notable chapters in Jesus' ministry. The center, to be built on approximately 125 acres that the Israeli government is offering free of cost, would be a Christian theme park and visitors' center, one that would be particularly attractive to Evangelicals and other Christians who want to spend more time in the places where Jesus walked.

Officials in Israel say that out of about 2 million people who will realize their dream of visiting the Holy Land this year, more than half will be Christian. And among those, more than half will be Evangelical.

With that in mind, the Israeli ministry of tourism has gone public with a plan to build - in partnership primarily with American Evangelical churches - a sprawling Holy Land Christian Center on the northern shores of the Sea of Galilee, home to some of the most notable chapters in Jesus' ministry. The center, to be built on approximately 125 acres that the Israeli government is offering free of cost, would be a Christian theme park and visitors' center, one that would be particularly attractive to Evangelicals and other Christians who want to spend more time in the places where Jesus walked.

one of the key figures at the heart of the project would be Pat Robertson, the prominent televangelist and founder of The 700 Club.
"It thrills me to think that there will be a place in the Galilee where Evangelical Christians from all over the world can come to celebrate the actual place where Jesus Christ lived and taught. It will be our pleasure to fully cooperate with this initiative of the Israeli Government," says Mr. Robertson.

Christian Science Monitor

Reclaiming Europe for Christianity

A leading Catholic thinker in Scotland has been given a key role in the Vatican's long-term campaign to promote Christianity in Western culture.

John Haldane, professor of philosophy at St Andrews University, is to become consultor to the Pontifical Council for Culture. The 51-year-old, who has written for The Herald, said it was time to "reclaim Europe for Christianity".

Western society, he said, had lost its sense of the transcendent and lost the sense of "something beyond themselves that is greater and better than human beings".

The Pontifical Council for Culture was established in the 1960s in an effort to relate the Catholic church to modern society. Forty years on, the council has been charged with bringing spiritual meaning back into what is seen as an increasingly Godless culture.Professor Haldane said: "Everything has become unserious and shallow and we have got to re-evangelise the culture."The church has to engage with artists, writers, musicians and speak through radio, television and the print media in an effort to try to re-transcendentalise things. We have to inspire culture with a sense of its own dignity."

The Hearld

Lord Save Pittsburgh

I've held my tongue on the recent Mayoral election in Pittsburgh. With Bob O'Connor at the helm, I foresee something similar to Detroit happening here. It's not a pretty picture. Yet the folks elected him. They are happy to live in a corrupt environment and do not care who runs it so long as that person is a democrat. Long Live Yesterday! That's why I moved out of the city. Please just don't care about anything.

Mayor elect O'Connor made known his top priority. He said one of his top priorities after he is sworn in Jan. 3 will be to "redd up" the city in time for next summer's Major League Baseball All-Star Game at PNC Park.

That's it Bob. Forget the city is in ruins. Just take me out to the ballgame. So I can watch them play in the stadium that was supposed to solve all our problems. You know, the one I was forced to pay for. Strike 3 Pittsburgh. I send my condolences.

Welcome to Our World Ex-Justice Nigro

The voters get mad because the folks we elect pick our pockets and laugh in our face when we object. They think we are there to serve them and do not have the power to change things. That's what Goliath thought and look wht happened to him!

State Supreme Court Justice Russell M. Nigro, the first state-level judge ever denied another 10-year term, says he was the victim of "misguided" outrage over the pay-raise law the Legislature approved in July. Don't worry sir. We are not yet done.

"It doesn't make any difference whether you're good, bad or indifferent -- you're gone," Nigro told The Philadelphia Inquirer. "What (voters) did was an irrational thing. They sent a misguided missile."

The election came on the heels of a dramatic, albeit stalled, effort in the Legislature to repeal a four-month-old pay raise law that has riled voters. With no other state-level officials up for election this year, citizen groups that opposed the pay raise trained their sights on defeating the justices as a way to register public disenchantment with state government.

"I don't know what they thought they accomplished by knocking me out of the box," he said.

Calvin Cooledge was once asked what one thing he would like to do to improve the presidency. He replied saying he would like to be able to execute one person a year. The reporter then asked him if one would be enough? He said no, but it would keep the others wondering who's next.

Ponder that Mr. Nigro.



a special that aired last night, according to this story, they were sympathetic to abortion clinics. (Oregon Magazine) From Salon: PBS's "Frontline" special "The Last Abortion Clinic" shows us why the dark ages of illegal abortions and unwanted children are already here. (Salon) The person who made the documentary was asked “Was it difficult to get pregnant women to talk about their decisions about abortion?” Her answer was remarkably telling: “Yes, incredibly difficult, and understandably so. We talked to numerous pregnant women who were not able to access abortion due to lack of funds or transportation issues, who ultimately decided not to go on camera with us because they feared their child would learn someday that they really wanted to abort them and that would be heartbreaking to them.” (PBS)

A girl claims God told her to get an abortion
Waiting period is damaging


Simply stating a doctor must tell a woman having an abortion after 20 weeks that the baby may feel pain. Still, the governor insists he will veto it.


"Able Danger" UPDATE

Rep. Curt Weldon, R-Pa., who says the Defense Department is maligning a special unit called "Able Danger" to cover-up warnings of terror attacks, will hold a press conference this morning to provide new details of his findings.

The vice chairman of the House Armed Services and Homeland Security Committees will hold the press conference at 12:30 p.m. Eastern to discuss the latest findings of his own investigation.

He claims Able Danger provided to Defense officials information about terrorist activity in the Port of Aden prior to the terrorist attack on the USS Cole in October 2000. He will also reveal the discovery of another Able Danger member who confirms the Pentagon is not accounting for data. He also says the Defense Intelligence Agency is trying to smear Able Danger member Lt. Col. Anthony Shaffer who broke the silence about the Pentagon’s efforts to track al-Qaida worldwide prior to Sept. 11.

Weldon also has said the information on the prior identification of Atta was provided to the official "9-11 Commission" investigating the attacks, but commission members Timothy J. Roemer and John F. Lehman have said they never received it. He also says when the hijacker team leader was first identified, Pentagon lawyers prevented the passage of the information to the FBI.