Thursday, January 29, 2009

God vs. Chance

Formerly anonymous Thomist James Chastek writes rants in his comments more profound than most of my posts on the same issue. Go and read.

Sunday, January 25, 2009

On empiricism

I have no problem with empiricism properly understood. Aristotle and St. Thomas were both empiricists: "All knowledge begins in the senses."

I do, however, have a problem with the kind of "empiricism" that moves from, "all knowledge is derived from sense experience," to, "sense experience is all that we know." To which I can only respond: "Please show me Newton's law of universal gravitation."

Thursday, January 22, 2009

A Day of Mourning

Today is the 34th anniversary of the travesty and abomination that is Roe v. Wade. Please remember in your prayers the countless lives lost.

Please pray for an end to abortion in the United States and the world.

Prayer to End Abortion

Lord God, I thank you today for the gift of my life,
And for the lives of all my brothers and sisters.
I know there is nothing that destroys more life than abortion,
Yet I rejoice that you have conquered death
by the Resurrection of Your Son.
I am ready to do my part in ending abortion.
Today I commit myself
Never to be silent,
Never to be passive,
Never to be forgetful of the unborn.
I commit myself to be active in the pro-life movement,
And never to stop defending life
Until all my brothers and sisters are protected,
And our nation once again becomes
A nation with liberty and justice
Not just for some, but for all,
Through Christ our Lord. Amen!

Written by Priests for Life

Saturday, January 17, 2009

Aphorism XV

Contra Voltaire, it is to the living that we owe truth; to the dead we owe only respect.

Update on the Seminary

Since someone asked, and since it is National Vocation Awareness Week - even if it is the last day of it - I thought I would offer an update on my current situation.

On the licentiate front:

No news, which may be good news. Classes have only recently resumed after Christmas break, and even professors deserve some time off. My director received at least two other thesis papers the day before mine, so he is reading them in the order that he received them. Hopefully I will hear something in the next few weeks.

While I wait I am preparing to answer the questions I may be asked during my oral examination.

On the seminary front:

I have had my first interview with the Diocese vocations director and have truthfully sworn that I have never committed any actions that would pose an impediment to my potential ordination - i.e. that I have never killed anyone, adhered to heresy with full knowledge and consent of the will &c.

I have visited the seminary my diocese sends her candidates through.

I have received and begun filling out the application for the seminary and sponsorship by my diocese.

I have signed most of the necessary waivers and permission forms.

I have just finished my handwritten letter to my bishop telling His Excellency that I am entering into this under my own free will, that I am doing so for the good of the Church and my own soul and that I understand, insofar as I am able, that the priesthood entails commitments to celibacy and obedience to His Excellency and his successors.

I have scheduled the necessary physical.

I have scheduled the first part of the necessary psychological exam - the written portion.

I have contacted most of the people I am going to ask for recommendations. Three have already sent them in. One has the necessary information and should be working on it (I had better give him a gentle reminder). Two or three others all work in education, so I will contact them in another week or two after first giving them time to ease into and prepare for the new semester.

I still need to write a detailed autobiography. (I was asking my mother some questions the other day, making sure I remembered various childhood details correctly. She asked me why I was writing an autobiography. She had forgotten I needed to write one for the diocese's application process and so she though I was beginning my memoirs a little early.)

I need to begin answering some of the longer questions on the seminary application. If any of them are interesting, I may share my answers here.

Sunday, January 11, 2009

Rosary Novena

Someone at my parish was passing out this information. I thought I'd pass it on. I've already started, since it began today.
If you are apposed to abortion then there is bad news on the horizon. For those of you who do not know, the Freedom of Choice Act (FOCA) is set to be signed if congress passes it on January 21-22 of 2009. The FOCA is the next sick chapter in the book of abortion. If made a law then all limitations on abortion will be lifted which will result in the following:

1) All hospitals, including Catholic hospitals will be required to perform abortions upon request. If this happens Bishops vow to close down all Catholic hospitals, more then 30% of all hospitals in the United States .
2) Partial birth abortions would be legal and have no limitations.
3) All U.S. tax payers would be funding abortions.
4) Parental notification will no longer be required.
5) The number of abortions will increase by a minimum of 100,000 annually.

Perhaps most importantly the government will now have control in the issue of abortion. This could result in a future amendment that would force women by law to have abortions in certain situations (rape, down syndrome babies, etc) and could even regulate how many children women are allowed to have.

Needless to say this information is disturbing, but sadly true. As Catholics, as Christians, as anyone who is against the needless killing of innocent children, we must stand as one. We must stop this horrific act before it becomes a law.

The Plan :

To say a novena ( 9 days of prayer ) along with fasting starting on January 11th. The prayer of choice will be the rosary with intentions to stop the FOCA. The hope is that this will branch and blossom as to become a global effort with maximum impact. We have very little time so we all must act fast. Just do three things:

1) Pass this letter to 5 or more people
2) Do it in three days or less
3) Start the novena on January 11th and pray for nine consecutive days. (please also fast for at least two days during the novena)

Remember that with God all things are possible and the power of prayer is undeniable. If you are against the senseless killing of defenseless children then the time is now to do something about it!
Please join in if you can.