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Spanking: Continuing the conversation

Here is an excellent article on the challenge to effectively communicate what research says about corporal punishment and to help parents do an even better job without it.  The author is a researcher at the Columbia Univ.  School of Social Work. We found that children who were spanked by their mothers at age 5, even [Read More...]

“Teach Us How To Pray” A Great New Guide for Families

On our radio program, More2Life, Lisa and I regularly get call from parents struggling with one issue or another.  Although the advice we offer is always tailored to a family’s particular circumstances, we often start by asking parents to join together with their children to seek God’s guidance on the best way to proceed.  The [Read More...]

Today on "Kresta in the Afternoon" – October 22, 2013

Talking about the "things that matter most" on October 22

4:00 – The New Evangelization: What It Is and How It Affects the Life of Every Catholic – Continued Conversation From Last Week
"No believer in Christ, no institution of the Church can avoid this supreme duty: to proclaim Christ to all peoples."-- Blessed John Paul II. With the encouragement of Blessed John Paul II and Pope Benedict XVI, discover a renewed urgency and growing enthusiasm for sharing the Gospel with those in your life, both non-believers and those who are no longer practicing their faith. In The Urgency of the New Evangelization: Answering the Call, Ralph Martin explains: It's not just a churchy buzzword, It's not just for priests and missionaries to carry out, YOU and every individual Catholic play a role, it is literally a matter of life or death for everyone in your life, And… it's not as hard as you think. Ralph joins us to continue a conversation we started last week.

5:00 - Graphic Images: An Apologia – Their History and Role in the Pro-Life Movement
The Nazi Holocaust ended nearly seventy years ago. Yet, despite the overwhelming evidence of the systematic extermination of European Jews, there are those who deny that these atrocities actually occurred. Much, if not all, of such denial is motivated by a politically or philosophically based anti-Semitism. One of the most persuasive rebuttals to Holocaust denial is the photographic record of its victims. This record, both still photos and film, was used to great effect by the prosecutors during the Nuremberg trials. They are often graphic and hard to look at, but they are real. They show something that is real. Why not the same for the reality of abortion? Dr. Monica Miller offers an apologia for graphic images of abortion.

What’s the #1 Reason Marriages Fail?

People always ask me that question.  They expect me to say, “poor communication” or “infidelity” or “addiction” or some such.  Although these are all challenges, the real problem  is something deeper.  Here’s an article from Together for Life taken from Lisa and my latest book, Just Married:  The Catholic Guide to Surviving & Thriving in the First [Read More...]

The Secrets of Exceptional Couples Revealed!

The Christophers website shares some thoughts from my book on what it takes to have an exceptional marriage. For any marriage to work, spouses have to step into it with one absolute in mind: no matter what, we stay together. From that place of certainty and security, couples can navigate the rough spots and know [Read More...]

“Marketing” Catholic Marriage in a Post-Marriage World–FREE WEBINAR TODAY!

Join us in this webinar today and learn how to share the Catholic vision of love & marriage more effectively! Webinar Registration Everyone uses the word “marriage” but it seems to mean a million different things to a million different people. Today it seems that many couples don’t believe marriage means anything anymore.  In this marriage-hostile [Read More...]

Faith schools may lose the right to teach religion from their own perspective and be forced to tell pupils more about other faiths

Faith schools could be banned from teaching their own denomination if proposals to add RE to the national curriculum go ahead
Faith schools could be banned from teaching their own
  denomination if proposals to add RE to the national
curriculum go ahead
  • Report says RE should be added to national curriculum
  • Fears that subject has been marginalised and is being badly taught
  • Faith schools would be legally required to teach standard syllabus
  • Currently RE is a compulsory subject but with no agreed content
By Chris Pleasance
|
 

Faith schools could lose the right to teach their own belief and instead have to give more weight to other religions.

A report by the Religious Education Council for England and Wales says RE has become marginalised and should be added to the national curriculum.

But that would make it a legal requirement for all school to teach the same syllabus, regardless of their faiths.

The report, a three year review of religious teaching in schools, could form the basis of a new curriculum when it is released next week.

Chairman John Keast has admitted that it would be difficult for faith schools to teach their own denomination, but said one solution could involve optional modules for students.

Speaking to The Times, he said: 'These are quite important and difficult issues to overcome. I don't personally think they are insuperable.

'I think you could get sufficient agreement on a national body of religious education knowledge and skills and understanding that everyone should know for the modern world.'


Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2467231/Faith-schools-lose-right-teach-religion-perspective-forced-tell-pupils-faiths.html#ixzz2iQLnrWPt
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Drunk, But Not on Whiskey

 

The Public Discourse
We have the worst of both worlds: a Prohibitionary State that gives license to all kinds of evil, but that regulates and restricts actions that are not evil, to manage the chaos that results from the license.
 
In October, 1919, a heavily “progressive” Congress passed the Volstead Act enforcing the Eighteenth Amendment, prohibiting, for almost all purposes, the production, sale, and distribution of alcoholic beverages. There are two things everybody has learned from Prohibition. First, it is wrong to try to legislate morality. Second, you cannot do it, for Prohibition failed. But neither of these things is true, and the real lessons of Prohibition go unheeded.

First, law is nothing if not the codification of morality. All laws bear some relation, however distant, to a moral evaluation of good and bad. We cannot escape making moral distinctions. One man’s theft is another man’s redistribution of income. One man’s defense of family honor is another man’s murder. Even people who reduce law to utilitarian calculations cannot evade this truth. They may say, “It is useful to refrain from stealing, because then everyone’s goods will be secure,” appealing to self-interest. But why should security be prized higher than the thrill of danger? And how can mere usefulness bind my conscience? A man may fight to the death for justice, and to hell with utility.

Second, if Prohibition was intended to curtail hard drinking, it did work. It’s always easier to look at something that happened than to imagine what would have happened but didn’t. Most people obeyed the law. Of course there were speakeasies and bootleggers. The Kennedy family made their fortune on illegal whiskey. But there wasn’t a speakeasy on every street or a still in every backyard. Actuarial tables show that, shortly after Prohibition began, deaths from cirrhosis of the liver dropped considerably, and continued to drop through the twenties, leveling off by the time Prohibition was repealed in 1933.

After all, Prohibition did enjoy some wide support. Billy Sunday, baseball player and itinerant preacher, campaigned for it. Even Irish Catholics were not uniformly in opposition. I recall a photograph of a parade held in my coal-mining town in 1918, to celebrate the armistice. Prominent were the Knights of Father Mathew, an Irish temperance society.

So, then, what does Prohibition teach us?

Read the rest here: http://www.thepublicdiscourse.com/2013/10/7577/

“What was Auschwitz?” “I don’t know…”



No rant here, just clear demonstration of our terrifying ignorance and disconnection from our recent past:

Questioner: What was the Holocaust?
American College Student: Um…I’m on the spot.

Questioner: Which country was Adolf Hitler the leader of?
American College Student: I think it’s Amsterdam?

Questioner: What was Auschwitz?
American College Student: I don’t know.
.....


Watch it to the end. The woman makes her point, very well, and with no acrimony.

 



Read the rest here: http://www.patheos.com/blogs/theanchoress/2013/10/17/what-was-auschwitz-i-dont-know/

Some Hard Spiritual Truths That Will Set You Free.

A Meditation on a Teaching from St. John of the Cross

 
I have written before on Five Hard Truths That Will Set You Free. In this post I would like to ponder Some Hard Spiritual truths that will set us free.
 
In calling them “hard truths,” I mean that they are not the usual cozy bromides that many seek. They speak bluntly about the more irksome and difficult realities we confront. But, if we come to accept them, they have a strange way of bringing serenity by getting us focused on the right things, instead of chasing after false dreams.
 
For it sometimes happens that a person can spend his whole life being resentful that life isn’t peachy, forgetting all the while that we are in exile, that we are making a hard journey, we pray, to a life where, one day, every sorrow and difficultly is removed, and death and sorrow are no more. But not now.
 
There is a kind of unexpected serenity in living in the world as it is, rather than resenting the world for not being what we want it to be. For now, the journey is hard and we have to be sober about our obtuse desires and destructive tendencies. And that is why there is a value in calling these insights, “hard truths that will set us free.”
 
In the very opening section of his Spiritual Canticle, St. John of the Cross lays out a presumed worldview that the spiritually mature ought to have attained. And because he presumes it of his reader, he states it only briefly.
 
Yet, for us who live in times not known for spiritual maturity, we ought to slow down for a moment and ponder these truths which are not only poorly understood, but even actively resisted today by many who call themselves wise and spiritually mature.
 
Remember now, these are hard truths, and many today wish to bypass the harder teachings of God. Thus we do well to pay special attention to a Spiritual Master who is deeply immersed in Scripture, as a remedy for the soft excesses of our modern times.
 
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