Wednesday, July 18, 2012

The Feast of St. Mary Magdalen

That's right, Dan Brown's favorite Catholic feast day is just around the corner.  That whimsical prostitute who, along with Jesus, fathered the Merovingian Dynasty, has her feast day this Sunday - according to the best scholarship of course. 

Don't know what will be done.  As so often happens, in our hip, secular world there isn't much time for big celebrations any more, at least those centered around saints.  July 4th was the last one, and Labor Day will be the next.  But it's worth remembering that there was a time when such days came filled to the brim with customs, traditions, and celebrations.  But we can still do our part as Catholics, and try to put some vim and vigor into days around which the entire annual Catholic calendar once turned.  So dab on some perfume, get a Madeleine or two, and remember someone who didn't point to a vast, global Jewish Catholic conspiracy to murder and take over the world, but rather pointed to the infinite mercy and love of a forgiving Savior.

Surgens autem mane prima sabbati, apparuit primo Mariæ Magdalene, de qua ejecerat septem
                  Mark 16:9

When weather is climate is weather is climate

If you can keep track, you're better than me. When it was hot in the 90s, we were told because it was so hot in the 90s, that it proved Global Warming. Then some time in the mid-00s, it became cool, really cool. At first we got the new term 'Global Climate Change', and were told bad winters were the result. But as several years brought mild to cool summers, and terrible record breaking winters, we were told it didn't matter. All that was just weather. Now, we're told that all this that was called weather is really climate and once again proves Global Warming.

Two blogs that are better than mine take up the order of business about all the latest. Michael Flynn does a wonderful job explaining for us novices why we should be skeptical about the latest 'this proves we're right' study that supports what MMGW advocates want to believe. Meanwhile, Thomas McDonald uses common sense to point out that all of this near record breaking heat in the summer was once understood as being part of summer. Notice the emphasis on near record breaking when we hear it discussed. So far, it's not record breaking. The worst since the 50s. Not even close to the Dust Bowl yet. And yet, the beat goes on.

I'm sorry, but by now you have to have faith in the purity of humanity not to smell a rat. Many advocates of MMGW rush and say I don't know the science so shut up. They're right. I don't know the science. So I can only rely on scientists to explain it to me. But when those scientists exhibit the same characteristics of a used car salesman standing beside a Buick and insisting that it's no big deal that it has an oil leak the size of a small wading pool, forgive me for being cautious. Especially when so much of the frenzy and hysteria fits with the modern 'We're all going to feakin' die!', when the solutions range from 'give us more billions to research this' to 'vote for more government control of your lives', to 'there's just too damn many people in the world and it's time we start thinning the herds', I'm going to take a second look.

More and more, as I hear scientists change what they said a month ago, rename what they named a year ago, and tell me it's time to pay attention to what's happening outside my window again (despite saying the opposite a few years ago), I think less of clear scientific reasoning and theorizing, and more about a desperate attempt to ignore any pesky data that could show they are wrong:

We can assume Christians are the guilty ones

According to new convert Leah Libresco.  Picked up on Mark Shea's blog, it doesn't take long for Christians to take their places in the circular firing squad.  Could the hacking be from Christian groups? Yeah.  The Secular Student Alliance would seem to be targeted by religious types.  It could be true.  And I don't know the designs of the alliance.  If it's a place for secularists to hang out, no problem.  If, like other atheist groups, it's all about how to crush the right to be religious in our post-modern age, then my sympathies aren't there. 

The fact is, it's a group we know little about hacked by someone we can't identify.  Leah, God love her, sings the praises of atheists who came to the rescue when Christians were so treated.  Though I know from experience some of the sites mentioned in the links have about one part 'gee, maybe it's sometimes not good to vandalize churches', and about three to four parts 'stupid religious fanatic scum, it's what they get.'  But notice the ease and speed with which Christians jump forth to help a group they know little to nothing about, all the while rushing forward with the assumption that, as is always the case in our post-modern narrative, Christians do not deserve a trial, by nature they are guilty as charged.  It's just when Christians do it, we assume that applied to all [not me] Christians. 

Boy Scouts affirm the right to not be liberal

Looks like after giving it careful consideration, the Boy Scouts of America have failed to conform to the Left's dogmatic definitions of diversity.  Leftist outlets are, as can be expected, outraged at this failure to conform to goodthink.  The usual accusations of captivity by evil Jews, Communists, Religious Zealots are flying fast about the media world.  Expect the attacks to step up in the upcoming months. 

Because Christians are the most violent people in the world

According to the likes of Tavis Smiley and Whoopi Goldberg, we can expect endless riots and mass killings any minute because of this.  Any minute at all.  Just wait. Here they come...

I'm back

For a time, times and half a time.  Anyway, what follows are some links to things that have caught my attention, a few comments, and an update.  The update first.  I've been plowing forward in my second of two jobs, which when combined with my first, is still unable to provide the sparsest sustenance.  My wife is currently looking for gainful employment, but still nothing.  The toughest part is that for the underpay and no real upward potential, my schedule is such that I will miss entire swaths of my boys' life this year.  If it was enough even to get by on, I could handle that.  If it was for some grand purpose, OK.  But for a job scarcely making it, that pill goes down tough.  Especially as there is no way we are gaining any means to help my oldest prepare for college, or even make some necessary - and safety oriented - repairs around the house.   Oh, and I won't even discuss our garden this year.  So much for saving money that way.

Needless to say, I'm not the happiest.  After almost seven years of trying to make myself available within the diocese, I have concluded that there is no need - or want - of my services.  I've been told by no less than three priests that putting 'former Protestant clergy' on my resume is probably the issue.  Like it or no, attitudes about the Great Protestant Clergy Conversion (TM) have cooled in recent years.  I've known for some time that the numbers have diminished, that being logical given the economic factors of our time.  But it's clear at this point that the Church in our neck of the woods, if not the Church universal, has little interest at this point in putting former clergy converts to work (except for the Anglican Communion, but that's another story).  That's just a fact.  It's not good or evil, right or wrong.  It's a fact, and one I must accept.  Waiting for that dream position that would utilize my years of schooling, training, and experience as a former member of the clergy, while having some position that might help us financially, is akin to waiting for Rush Limbaugh to vote for President Obama. 

Therefore, I've moved on, though the economic fact of our age, as so many other Americans are aware of, is hindering our ability to even keep up, much less make it with anything to spare.  So these last weeks, and likely the upcoming weeks (months?) will find me working, looking, searching, and looking some more in the hopes of taking care of my family - the only vocation I have left.  We'll see.  But during this time, I'm afraid I won't have much time, and will only be able to swing by on random and sparse occasions to blog.  So here are a few of the things I saw.  Enjoy, and I hope everyone is doing well, getting by, and making it if not more so. 

Sunday, July 8, 2012

This always cracked me up

Back when Cartoon Network could still be understated and over the top at the same time, before the dark days of modern comedy made subtlety a thing of the past.

Saturday, July 7, 2012

Have I mentioned that I have awesomely cool kids?

Posting has been light of late, owing to some issues that have arisen, not the least of which was my wife falling off a ladder a couple weeks ago.  Hopefully I'll get caught up soon.  I have a few thoughts here and there, but most importantly, we've had some absolutely beyond-cool fun with the boys due to birthdays and the 4th of July celebrations.

Here is a sketch picture done at the house of cheese-mouse himself.  Ironically, our 12 year old, whose birthday it was, is the one mostly hidden, but his enthusiasm still shows.  Maybe it's the proud Dad, but ti sure looks like it could be the cover of an album to my eyes!  More to follow (assuming the good old computer will work!)

Wednesday, July 4, 2012

A belated happy birthday

To our now 12 year old.  He's the last of the older three to be on the verge of teenage years.  Our youngest has many years to go.  But in this first phase, he stands on the brink, the odd man out of our somewhat introverted family, the nitro to his older brothers' glycerin.  May God bless you with a wonderful and fulfilling year. 

Happy Birthday America

May you live to see your tricentennial.  For all its failings, for all its missing the mark of its own lofty standards, it's still been one of the greatest single undertakings in human history.  Today, as so many seem eager to put a stop to everyone else's liberties, as our place in the top spot of the world seems threatened, as the population continues to lumber on like so many extras from the set of The Walking Dead, I'm still optimistic that this country can survive.  Put me in that camp of Catholics who see America as a great nation, whose greatness is threatened only by the lax example and compromising that defines so many Americans, including Catholics.  While those conservatives are not immune to failing - I'm thinking torture in recent years - I've not given up hope.  But that's because the alternative, the post-modern progressive movement, which promises, for the time being, freedom for hedonism and oppression and censorship for everything else, is the single greatest threat to our freedom that we've faced since 1780.  So happy birthday America, may your citizens wake up and realize that by focusing on the bad for all these years, we've set the stage for losing anything that was ever good, and once lost, it will not be recovered easily, if ever again this side of heaven.

Tuesday, July 3, 2012

God bless Andy Griffith

Andy Griffith as he'll always be remembered
Andy Griffith has died.  A little over a year after my own Dad, and that saddens me even more.  Andy Griffith was one of those rare individuals who you got the impression was all that he seemed to be.  While many remember him as the skinflint lawyer Matlock, most will forever remember him as the kind, wise, and respect- demanding sheriff Andy Taylor.  Even today, young people I work with and know were saddened to hear of his passing.  In an age of reality TV and the muck and murk of modern tabloid celebrity, it stands as a testimony that he would be missed by so many across so many age groups.  My boys have long enjoyed reruns of The Andy Griffith Show.  A man whose heart never strayed far from his roots, his faith, or his values; actor, comedian, Gospel singer - he will be missed.  Rest in the arms of God Mr. Griffith, and thank you God for giving him to us, if just for a little while. 

Sunday, July 1, 2012

Some storm shots from the car

A little shot of the storms that flew through yesterday.  At 5:00 PM, when it is normally sunny and bright, it looked like this:

I had to stop at this point, since the rains were getting heavier and the hail was beginning to fall.  Soon the winds were so high (about 80 mph), I could feel the car being lifted up.  At this point, thousands are still without power.  We were blessed, however, as we neither sustained damage nor had a power outage.  God's speed to those who cannot make either of those statements.