This week, an interesting thing will likely happen in Mexico City. It looks as if the city will be the first and only abortion zone in Mexico. I don’t know much about abortion or the politics behind it–particularly in Mexico–but this seems like a strange phenomena to me; a local area that permits abortion, in spite of the rest of the nation’s policies. That would be like having prostitution legal in Reno or alcohol illegal in Oberlin, Ohio, despite it’s permission in the rest of the state.

I think abortion is revolting, so I’m not happy about Mexico City, but I can assure you that I’m losing no sleep over the matter. The Pope made a statement, essentially asking the city council there to reconsider, but being as liberal-minded as they are, it appears that they may not reconsider their tentative approval for the matter.

Just strange, I guess. Oh well. Our country permits it everywhere. It will be interesting to see what happens in this.

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Pope mentions Iraq War in his easter greeting

During his Easter Sunday address to thousands of Catholic faithful, our Pope, Benedict XVI, mentioned the futility of the ongoing war in Iraq. I have provided a news story about the pontiff’s address. Pope Benedict has been a vocal critic of the war since his days as Cardinal. Benedict called into the question the morality of preventative or preemptive war and has caught the ire of many people for that. I’m proud that my Pope, like his predecessor, John Paul II, can speak strongly on the matter in Iraq. All Christians–even Protestants and Orthodox–should be grateful that there are Christian leaders throughout the world who are willing to speak up on this matter so bluntly. God Bless us all this year and thank you Benedict for your words. I only wonder why so-called conservatives such as Sean Hannity and Newt Gingrich or Rush Limbaugh haven’t turned on this guy. The second a celebrity speaks out against the war they’re trashed. What about the leader of the largest Christian body in the world? The thing is, these men are cowards. None could hold a candle to the decency and integrity of Il Papa. On this day of the Resurrection (sp.), I’m proud to call Benedict my Pope.

Pope: ‘Nothing positive’ from Iraq

By FRANCES D’EMILIO, Associated Press Writer1 hour, 30 minutes ago

In an Easter litany of the world’s suffering, Pope Benedict XVI lamented that “nothing positive” is happening in Iraq and decried the unrest in Afghanistan and bloodshed in Africa and Asia.

“How many wounds, how much suffering there is in the world,” the pontiff told tens of thousands gathered Sunday at St. Peter’s Square on what is Christianity’s most joyful feast day.

Benedict, delivering his traditional “Urbi et Orbi” Easter address from the central balcony of St. Peter’s Basilica, read out a long list of troubling current events, saying he was thinking of the “terrorism and kidnapping of people, of the thousand faces of violence which some people attempt to justify in the name of religion, of contempt for life, of the violation of human rights and the exploitation of persons.”

“Afghanistan is marked by growing unrest and instability,” Benedict said. “In the Middle East, besides some signs of hope in the dialogue between Israel and the Palestinian Authority, nothing positive comes from Iraq, torn apart by continual slaughter as the civil population flees.”

He singled out what he called the “catastrophic, and sad to say, underestimated humanitarian situation” in Darfur as well as other African places of suffering, including violence and looting in Congo, fighting in Somalia — which, he said, drove away the prospect of peace — and the “grievous crisis” in Zimbabwe, marked by crackdowns on dissidents, a disastrous economy and severe corruption.

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Saint, I aint.

I think one of the great downfalls of Christianity has nothing to do with Christianity in fact.

Christianity should never be righteous, arrogant or boastful, for none of those things are what Jesus Christ was about and there is nobody on this earth who is deserving of that praise. All have sinned and come short of the glory of God.

During Lent, Christians prepare themselves for the Resurection of Jesus from the dead, which is something beyond all comprehension.

Lent, for many Catholics, myself not included, is a time of fasting, penance, privations even.

I respect that type of admiration and enthusiasm for Christ because it is far from what I have been able to achieve in my life.

Since “becoming a Christian” in 2001 and being Confirmed in 2002, I have made just as many mistakes, committed just as many sins and done more lousy things than I did before. Nothing has changed in that regard.

I don’t disclose this to be exculpatory towards myself. In the end, there is but one divine judge He will have his way with my soul.

At times I’m not sure why I call myself a Christian.As a Catholic, we’re supposed to love and love until it hurts. And when the hurting is too much to bear we should call on God to help us love more.

It seems at times that I’m incapable of that type of selfless love that binds all men to God.

In the fall I had a spiritual experience that I can’t describe other than peace. It went away, but I’m glad I have it and welcome for it to come again into my life. Until then, it appears that I’m like everyone else, just a person, a man, confused, tired, wanting.

This is a life worth living and one that I love, despite it’s frustrations. I only wish I could do better though. How is it? It’s no one’s fault either.

We prepare for ourselves a condominium on earth when there is a Kingdom beyond us. The grass is greener on this side of God, I suppose. It looks that way.

The best Christians, in my view, aren’t the righteous, but those who recognize their weakness, their tendency towards evil and their shortcomings (I won’t include myself in that group, despite my predeliction to do wrong!).

Instead, I’m speaking of the models of Christian life: St. Augustine comes to mind as does my hero, St. Francis of Assisi, the reveler and prodigal son who before founding one of the greatest spiritual movements known to man, was a carouser and womanizer and a drunk.

The best Christians aren’t always the ones wearing robes or certainly not pin striped suits, dancing and screaming Hallelujah.

The crem-de-la crem of Jesus’ flock are the prisoners who turn the other way, the murderers who recognize their evil, the corrupt leader who asks forgiveness.

Karla Faye Tucker, who the state of Texas put to death in 1998 for murder did in my opinion more for the message of peace and love by asking for her forgiveness than a million holy men looking for praise, attention or worse, money.

Then Governor George W. Bush, the compassionate Christian leader that he is, ignored Tucker’s plea to be spared execution, turned his back on her tears and signed away her life.

In writing this, I don’t imply that a murderer, a molestor, adulterer, rapist, drug dealer, thief or any other miscrient is doing good work for God’s Kingdom simply by doing what they do. No. Not at all. But doesn’t God rejoice over one sinner turning his way more so than a multitude of holy men?

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If you're gonna send one of these things, make sure you put it in the right envelope

With the Internet connecting people from every walk of life and every social and political perspective, this item has certainly been around a lot so likely if you’re reading this, you’ve heard of it before. I’ve yet to break a story!

 Two nights ago CNN’s Paula Zahn invited Aspen Baker, the founder of the post-abortion counseling organization Exhale on her show to talk about a new and controversial  sympathy card, one you’re not likely to find in the stationary section at CVS or Walgreens.

It’s an abortion sympathy card and you can send them through the Internet. An e-card! Awesome. But there’s others. Awesome!

I’ll begin by saying that I’m pro-choice. By default. I don’t like abortion. I think it’s pretty revolting. I also think it is the proverbial red herring in politics. Both camps throw it out when in my belief abortion effects our collective society much less than the global climate, war and the economy. I am convinced making it illegal is about as effective as the war on drugs. Pro-choice activists—I hate that term because anyone can call themselves an activist these days—have a valid point. It will just go underground. My solution is not giving it any public subsidies, of which it receives very few. Fair enough.

 People must face the consequences, whatever they may be, bodily or spiritually of having a living thing removed from their body.

 And that’s why I find these cards so incredibly tacky. Because the people who are so gung-ho about abortion are generally speaking the ones who want things to be both ways.

They would like the right to terminate a pregnancy—which is offensive to some—but they would also like their decision to be seen as sacrosanct and beyond question.

It’s a free marketplace of ideas and some people can handle abortion better than other. As a social worker, my mother told me there were several women she came across in her time working in an inner city hospital who had numerous ones

I generally believe that God is merciful. There’s no reason to believe He’d be any less merciful to a woman with an abortion than he would to a common criminal or someone who watches pornography day and night. I fully support the ideas of forgiveness, redemption and personal growth in life.

But something about wanting things both ways just seems like a joke. If an abortion is such a serious decision, then why how is a sympathy card–printed or downloaded–going to mean anything. It’s an empty gesture like a yellow ribbon on a tree or one of those Lance Armstrong wristbands. Just idiotic in my opinion. Birthdays and anniversaries and graduations and promotions already mean very little. And meaning very little, a cottage industry of card makers swoops in to grab up the cash of those who are too lazy or to insincere or dishonest to admit that these are boring events in life. Therefore, a card in the mail with a $5 bill will suffice. Awesome.

<——————–I love this one for it’s intense emotional detachment.