“The issue is now quite clear. It is between light and darkness and every one must choose his side.” G. K. Chesterton

Friday, July 13, 2012

7 Quick Takes Friday

--- 1 ---
I have a confession to make: I am a elections geek. Not that I'm that crazy about politics or politicians; like most red-blooded Americans, I have little use for either most of the time (as a Fed, particularly during the annual round of "shutdown/no shutdown" roulette). But I love the process of elections; who is ahead and where, what do the polls say today, and what does the Electoral College map look like. Having said all that, my favorite website (other than various Catholic sites and NASCAR.com) is realclearpolitics.com. It's "one-stop shopping" for the latest in political news and opinion. They have two really great features: a compilation of all current polls and the tracking of an average of all of them; and a map showing the current projected distribution of the Electoral College. My favorite feature of the latter is the ability to create your own map. Sometimes when I need a break, I just go to the map and play around with different scenarios. Which led me to discover at least one scenario where Obama and Romney tie in the Electoral College, something that has not happened since 1824. Having lived through the 2000 election, I hope this does not happen--but at least it would be exciting!
--- 2 ---
Speaking of NASCAR, I'm thinking about setting up an online petition asking that the organizers of one of the upcoming Sprint Cup races ask Archbishop Timothy Cardinal Dolan of New York deliver the invocation.

Every Sunday the invocation is delivered by an Evangelical Protestant minister; I think it's time we Catholic NASCAR fans were represented.  Besides, have you ever heard the man speak?  I'm not sure he would even need a microphone.
--- 3 ---
As a proud Dad, I should brag about my 17 year old daughter Maggie.  She's started her own blog, Blue Denim Skirts and Red High Heels.  Check out her first post on her first confession when she along with the rest of us entered the Catholic Church in October.
--- 4 ---
I want to say congratulations to the courageous Abby Johnson, who gave birth to her first child (a son) on Monday.  For those of you who don't know, Abby was once a director for a Planned Parenthood clinic who left her job when she came to realize what abortion is.  Her book, Unplanned tells her story.

I want to encourage everyone to check out the website for her new ministry, And Then There Were None, an outreach to abortion clinic workers who want to leave their jobs, but often need emotional, spiritual, and financial support in making the transition.  We often forget about the clinic workers; for a few, it's a calling, but for many it's just a way to pay the bills.  They have souls who are in just as much need of our love and prayers as the women and unborn children who go into the clinics. 
--- 5 ---
I had not seen this video from the National Prayer Breakfast in February.  The keynote speaker was Eric Metaxas, author of the biography Bonhoeffer:  Pastor, Martyr, Prophet, Spy.  (A book I have not read yet, but is now on my reading list).  Also in attendance was President Obama, Vice-President Biden, Nancy Pelosi and other pro-abortion dignitaries.  This is what "speaking truth to power" really means.

Due to popular demand, Thomas Nelson Publishing published an Ebook of the speech, Jesus Hates Dead Religion.  You can order it from Amazon or Barnes and Noble 
--- 6 ---
I hate the commercials for NuvaRing.  You've seen them; young obviously single twenty-something women out for a night on the town, or at an outdoor concert, or at dance class, sharing breathlessly about the latest advance in artificial contraception.  (If you haven't seen it, you can go here to view the commercial and see what I'm talking about).  Aside from the unbelievability of the scenes (how many women talk about their birth control over cocktails), it makes it seem to be the glamorous, hip thing to do.  If you want to be hip, you'll use this latest advance in contraception; you'll be more of a woman, more of a free spirit.  It will allow you to do the one thing you were meant to do--have sex without worrying about commitment or children getting in the way.  While the commercials do have the standard mentions about possible side effects, the don't mention that the Ring has around an 8% failure rate.

The reason I bring this commercial up is because it goes to a problem Catholics and others have had in arguing against artificial birth control and in favor of Natural Family Planning; the former seems modern, the latter archaic.  That's why I'm excited about 1flesh.org, a website for
"A grassroots movement in opposition to the use of artificial contraception, dedicated to bringing great sex [n.b, within marriage] to the entire universe."  With cutting edge videos, graphics, and articles it provides solid information about the problems caused by the use of artificial contraception and talks about Natural Family Planning.  Instead of young women talking rapsodically about the pill, you get a video of a young married couple talking about how the Creighton Method of Natural Family Planning has worked for them.

Not only is 1flesh.org effective in getting the message concerning NFP across, it also should serve as a model for delivering our messages in other areas.  We need to use videos, graphics, and personal stories to broadcast our case for the sanctity of life, the sanctity of marriage, religious freedom, and parental responsibility to a world desperate to hear, but that drowns out older forms of communication.  1flesh.org should serve as a model for how to evangelize for the culture of life.

--- 7 ---

Finally, I want to say thank you to everyone who visited my blog during it's first week of existence.  I'm not sure I would have continued writing without knowing that someone was out there actually reading my random thoughts.  
For more Quick Takes, visit Conversion Diary!

1 comment:

  1. The young woman in this video is a home-schooled Northern Virginia girl now attending a Catholic university further west. One of the most important reasons for homeschooling is to teach young people how to swim against the tide.