St. Francis of Assissi

francis

Today is the memorial of St. Francis of Assissi. I studied for two years in Lourdes School Mandaluyong, a Franciscan-run school and it was there that I first knew about St. Francis of Assissi. Well, actually, it was during my stay at Lourdes School that I saw the movie “Brother Sun, Sister Moon”. Later, after High School, I read the Image Book “The Little Flowers of St. Francis”. Continue reading

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What is “Anti-Life”?

condom cartoon-sm

Someone called my attention to a Philippine Daily Inquirer written by Fr. Joaquin Bernas, SJ on the RH Bill Debates. The article is found here. In the article, the Jesuit lawmaker tried to clarify certain words being used in the current debate. The first is “Family Planning” and the second is “anti-life”. The hub of the argument is about the phrase “anti-life” which he writes is more applicable to abortion and not to contraception nor the abstention from sex. The article can be outlined thus:

Continue reading

Catholicism with a Muscle

Hulk

Jeff Mirus of Catholic Culture describes “muscular Catholicism” as a “tough combination of faith, prayer, sacrifice and effective action. It enlists the aid of heavenly powers while at the same time stretching our worldly resources to make a difference.” In order to explain the idea better, he gives us two examples of Catholic groups that give expression to this Catholic muscularity: “40 Days for Life” and the Dominican’s “Angelic Warfare Confraternity”.

I’ve been using the term “muscular” lately to describe the kind of Catholicism it will take to reconvert the Western world and reform Western culture. A truly muscular Catholicism is a tough combination of faith, prayer, sacrifice and effective action. It enlists the aid of heavenly powers while at the same time stretching our worldly resources to make a difference. Muscular Catholicism goes beyond the realm of ideas, but only in the sense that ideas have consequences. It gets the ideas right, and it is does not pretend that implementation is optional.

Muscular Catholicism grows and develops as committed Catholics are called to actualize the potential God has given them to work for His glory and the salvation of souls. Because every human person is unique, the varieties of prayer-in-action are many, and even if each human person on earth were to respond to his or her personal call, the different initiatives would not exhaust the possibilities open to an infinite God, nor would the effective collaboration exhaust the Divine capacity for good. There is no temptation in muscular Catholicism to rest content, no fear of running out of opportunities.

More on “Muscular Catholicism: Some Examples”

About the picture above. Did you know that Dr. Bruce Banner/Incredible Hulk is a lapsed Catholic? About the Hulk as Catholic

Kerala and Large Families

keralaIndia is like a large triangle pointing downwards. The southwestern tip of that upside down triangle is the state of Kerala, “God’s own country”. Tourist guides will tell you a lot of things about it; they won’t tell you that it has a large Christian population dating back to the year 55 AD. It is said that Thomas the Apostle evangelized India and Kerala is one of the fruits of his work. A history of Christianity in Kerala (formerly Cochin) is given at the Ananthapuri website.

Tho

There are three Catholic rites in Kerala: the Syro-Malabar, the Latin and the Syro-Malankara rites. They make up the thirty dioceses in this Indian State. The Church has suffered from Hindu persecution in the recent past as well.

Recently, Catholic Culture caught my attention with an article entitled “Living Catholic in Kerala”.

In the modern world, we Catholics will be taxed for many things and, according to the way of the world, our money will often be used badly. This means we have to pay those taxes and then step right outside the box, roll up our sleeves, and make the sacrifices necessary to provide a truly alternative way of both envisioning and actualizing the very same things—health, education, family relationships, community support, business, even life itself.

Some parishes in the Indian State of Kerala are doing just that. By offering families $225 if they have a fifth child, they’re saying that they love large families, that they don’t appreciate State efforts to minimize family size, and that they intend to help those who are willing and able to make the sacrifice of raising more children for the glory of God and the benefit of the social order. They’re saying, “We’re Catholics, and we have another way of living.”

Read more from Jeff Mirus’s “Living Catholic in Kerala”.

Hmmm… 225 USD to families with a fifth child? I wonder: can Pondo ng Pinoy handle that?

Why Catholics Have Large Families

Those who promote a healthy sex life usually mean sex without pregnancy — as if getting pregnant or a sexual life that is open to fertility is a disease. Catholics contend that a healthy sex life is one that follows a particular order: God above all, man below God and all other things — career, dreams, ambitions, etc. — below man. Below is Philip Lawler…

We aren’t the people who should be required to explain ourselves. It is the people who deliberately frustrate the natural process who should be asked to give a good reason for their strange behavior. I suggest that Catholics—and all others who welcome God’s design for human reproduction—stop making explanations, and instead ask the nosy questioners to explain their apparent ignorance. Do they really not know why we have children?

If there’s anything ruder than inquiries into why one has so many children, it’s the insufferable question: “Are you going to stop now?” If the sort of people who ask that question were capable of feeling embarrassment, they should be brought up short by a quick reply:

“Stop what?”

Read Philip Lawler’s article here.