Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Prayer Power Against RH Bill

Calling all people who love and cherish the dignity of human life, please join this pro-life prayer vigil to be held on August 4, 2012, Saturday, at the EDSA Shrine.

Say NO to RH Bill and YES to Life.

Church Calls Faithful to August 4 Prayer Rally vs. RH Bill

MANILA, July 30, 2012–The Catholic Church is calling on all the faithful to stand up and express their opposition to the reproductive health (RH) bill by gathering at the EDSA Shrine on Saturday, August 4, for the “Prayer Power Rally against the RH Bill.”

Organized by the Episcopal Commission on Family and Life (ECFL) of the Catholic Bishops’ Conference of the Philippines (CBCP) together with the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Manila, the gathering – which takes place from 1:00-7:00pm – is expected to draw thousands, as strong opposition to the contentious measure has continued to grow among faith-based groups, youth organizations, family and life advocates, and concerned citizens.

The event takes place three days before the expected August 7 “judgment day” of the RH bill at the House of Representatives, when solons vote whether or not to terminate interpellations on the measure.

According to ECFL Chairman Antipolo Bishop Gabriel V. Reyes, “this is a moral issue and therefore this event will not be a political rally but a prayer rally focused on praying for the non-passage of the [RH bill].”

Participants are enjoined to wear red — the Church’s symbol of martyrdom – and to bring religious images, rosaries and candles to the event, which will include dynamic presentations and music besides rousing speeches that will shed more light on — and show the beauty and vitality of – an authentic culture of life.

A Holy Mass will be offered at 5:00.

The prelate has also requested for the daily recitation of the Angelus at 6:00 pm in every home and parish during these days leading up to next week’s crucial vote.

In a radio interview today, CBCP President Cebu Archbishop Jose S. Palma referred to the prayer rally as “a demonstration of our sentiments and our advocacy for life.”

“Let us show that what we believe in is for the common good,” he added. (CBCP for Life)

Wednesday, July 25, 2012

The Many Substitue Fathers I Had

A personal sharing from Bro. A.

I have a new neighbor whose hand I wish to shake in congratulations. He’s a man of about 35 years, married, and with two young sons, about two and five years old. They have moved in a rented room in the house fronting my place – apparently a growing family. I wish to congratulate him because, each time he gets home from work, I can hear his young sons greeting him excitedly, “Daddy! Daddy!”

For that alone, I think he did his job well. I offer a prayer for him, that he’ll find a better life for his two beautiful sons (and beautiful wife).

He instantly earned a place in my thoughts because I don’t remember having the same fond relationship with my own father growing up. No matter how hard I searched my memory, I couldn’t find a single episode or even a single moment that I greeted him, “Daddy! Daddy!” All I can recall is how harsh a man he has been. That’s why I became ‘gay’ or had a homosexual problem, which I struggled to resolve these past few years (thankfully with much success after arduous self-reflective work).

I wish I had a father like my new neighbor. But since I didn’t have one, I just choose to be happy to see fathers here and there doing a great job. Whether they be young or old, I wish to shake these fathers’ hand each time, to give them heartfelt thanks. I also wish to throw a high five for each of their lucky little ones. I wish I could tell my story and the stories of about a hundred other people I know (and have read about) who have had troublesome fathers growing up and who have ended up with the same long-time struggle as mine.

I will be lying if I say I’m not envious each time. I no longer cry – for myself, that is – each time I witness such a father-and-son scene, but I still feel a twinge of envy or jealousy or else have a back-of-the-mind wish that I had a loving dad. Otherwise, I rejoice at such a blessed sight, keenly aware that not everyone is so ‘lucky.’

I routinely see this in church during mass – fathers cuddling their young sons, kissing them gently on the head, embracing them, gazing at them lovingly as if to say, “Behold, my son!,” wasting time with them making some enviable skin contact. How lucky these boys are, I thought.

I feel all is well with the world each time I see this. The kids will grow up loving right and loving life, which will mean a lot less delinquency, a lot less crime and terror in the world.

I worry each time it’s Father’s Day, for it exposes two things I lack. In church, I am always being mistaken for a father, and as a result, I sometimes long to be one and have a son of my own. Elsewhere, I pine to have a father I could greet Happy Father’s Day without being insincere, hurting, or feeling forced to.

This state of fatherlessness seems to be a condition I will have to live with the rest of my life. But if I review my life a bit more carefully, God, in His mysterious providence, turns out to have led me to several substitute fathers in ways I haven’t been aware of.

As a member of a Catholic community, I have been constantly under male mentors who have modeled for me what an upright Christian man should be. These relationships had some notable distance and boundaries, but these are better than zero. All these men, in their own flawed way, helped sustain me.

I also have had a lot of male friends through the years, who served as additional models of masculinity, but their example was limited to peer modeling, not fathering. But since I also have had peer rejection issues, this is certainly helpful.

Older male role models elsewhere in society – sportsmen, actors, politicians, etc. that I got attracted to along the way -- may also be replacement fathers should I choose to ‘idolize’ them in a personal way.

Since I go to Mass and confess regularly, the priests also serve as unwitting father figures to me. Of course, it helps that I also call them “Father.”

Lastly, I consider daily contact with God the Father through my prayer time to be the ultimate replacement for the lack. I tend to project and dump my father issues, however, on God the Father, especially when I’m down, but I know He’ll understand. After all, He’s the perfect dad to have. He’ll also know when I’m being abusive and in need of some major spanking.

This way, I am not much different from everybody else in the sense that we are all fatherless in our need to commune with God the Father no matter if we have had a kind earthly father growing up or not.

Sunday, July 22, 2012

Weekly News (Fourth Week of July 2012)

1. Denver Bishops Mourn With Community Over Theater Tragedy

DENVER — Archbishop Samuel Aquila and Auxiliary Bishop James Conley mourned with the Denver community after a gunman opened fire in a local movie theater on July 20, killing 12 and wounding more than 50. [Read More]

2. Catholic Chaplain Helps Families and Survivors After Aurora Shootings

Englewood, Colo., Jul 21, 2012 / 07:24 am (CNA).- At Swedish Medical Center, where 23 victims of a deadly movie theater attack were brought in the early hours of June 20, lay Catholic chaplain Marcus Ebenhoe is helping family, friends, and survivors. [Read More]

3. Train Online Missionaries, Parishes and Dioceses Urged

MANILA, July 19, 2012—Organizers of the first Catholic Social Media Summit (CSMS) held last weekend urged youth coordinators in the dioceses to replicate the highly successful event in their respective regions to train young Catholics to be online missionaries. [Read More]

4. Google Faces Criticism Over Global Push for Gay Advocacy

Krakow, Poland, Jul 19, 2012 / 02:04 am (CNA/EWTN News).- Google's push for the legal recognition of same-sex relationships in countries like Poland has drawn the ire of critics, who suggest the company should address basic human rights violations elsewhere. [Read More]

5. Pro-Life Opposition to Melinda Gates Population Summit Not Fading

New York, NY (CFAM/LifeNews) — Pro-life protesters at the Family Planning Summit in London last week signaled that opposition to the multi-billion dollar campaign is not going away. [Read More]

6. Contest Draws Attention to Natural Family Planning

Voting for Favorite Video Now Open to the Public

LOUISVILLE, Kentucky, July 19, 2012 (Zenit.org).- Goodness Reigns, a Catholic media site, is inviting the public to vote in its mini contest titled "Natural Family Planning: The Better Way." Judges for the event have already chosen as their favorite Leah Chen's video "Natural Family Planning Explained." [Read More]

7. Misperception Clouds the Truth

Americans are massively overestimating the percentage of the population that is homosexual -- a phenomenon that a pro-family activist says plays right into an "information war against the truth." [Read More]

8. The New York Times Reports Marriage leads to Economic Prosperity

NEW YORK, July 19, 2012, (LifeSiteNews.com) – The definition of marriage has long been considered a religious or legal argument. However, a growing number of economists, journalists, and social researchers are concluding that getting and staying married is a key to economic prosperity and domestic tranquility. [Read More]

9. Author of Controversial ‘Gold Standard’ Study on Gay Parenting Being Investigated by University

July 16, 2012 (LifeSiteNews.com) - The University of Texas has launched a “scientific misconduct” investigation of UT sociologist Mark Regnerus, after he was accused by homosexual activists of “scientific misconduct” in his recent study. [Read More]

10. Facebooking for God: Nun Recruits Online

CNN has a nice feature video on the Good Shepherd Sisters in Quebec, highlighting their innovative methods to attract new vocations. [Read More]

Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Courage Philippines' First Newsletter Out!

Kudos to Bro. A's initiative and the officers of Courage Philippines! Our ministry finally has its own newsletter which will be issued twice a year. It will be a great tool to update our benefactors and supporters of what is happening in the organization and also for those who might be interested to journey with us. You can now download our e-newsletter in PDF format which is located on the sidebar under the About Us section. Meanwhile, here is a message from our spiritual director, Fr. Dan Healy.

Congratulations to COURAGE Philippines for launching this newsletter!

It has always struck me that "courage" is a most appropriate name for this movement. I have the privilege of journeying with the men and women who join Courage and who persevere in their pursuit of holiness. They are truly examples of the virtue of courage. It takes great courage to listen to the truth and strive to live by it. It takes courage to face the personal challenges of same-sex attraction. It takes courage to be chaste in a world that promotes sexual immorality.

However, those with SSA are not the only ones who need courage. More and more, I see that this is the virtue most needed by anyone who stands up for the teachings of the Church, especially the truth about sexual morality. In the past it was not controversial to hold and teach that homosexual behavior is gravely wrong. But now, anyone who dares to oppose any part of the agenda of the aggressive gay rights movement is subject to harsh public ridicule, even threats. And it looks like the social climate will get worse before it gets better. We all need courage now!

We do not weaken in the face of trials and opposition, because our confidence is built on the truth, and on the encouragement of Jesus Himself, who repeatedly urges us: Do not be afraid!

May the Lord bless all the members of Courage and Encourage, and all those who support their efforts.

Sunday, July 15, 2012

Weekly News (Third Week of July 2012)

1. Philippine Bishops Release Pastoral Letter on New Evangelization

Highlight 9 Priorities Leading Up to 5th Centenary of Arrival of Catholicism

MANILA, Philippines, JULY 12, 2012, (Zenit.org).- Looking towards the celebration of the fifth centenary of the arrival of Christianity to the nation, the Catholic Bishops Conference of the Philippines (CBCP) released a pastoral letter on Era of the New Evangelization. [Read More]

2. Use Social Media But Value Real Relationships — Tagle

MARIKINA City, July 15, 2012—Manila Archbishop Luis Antonio Tagle urged the over 400 participants of the 1st Catholic Social Media Summit to consider the possibility that the desire to accumulate an enormous number of contacts on social networking sites indicates a yearning for authentic relationships that the virtual world cannot provide. [Read More]

3. Christianity Changing Lives of India's 'Untouchables'

Bangalore, India, Jul 12, 2012 / 04:07 am (CNA).- A human rights group in India says Christianity has brought slow but lasting change to the country's Dalits or “untouchables,” especially for the community's women who are often victims of prostitution and human trafficking. [Read More]

4. Statement by Andy Comiskey Expressing Concern About Exodus International and Alan Chambers [Read More]

5. World Population Day: What Is the UN Doing?

Billions of Dollars Directed to Reducing Births, While Countries Face Aging Populations

ROME, JULY 13, 2012 (Zenit.org).- Last Wednesday was the United Nation’s World Population Day. Predictably the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA) marked it by calling for more funds for family planning. [Read More]

6. Int’l Campaign Counters Gates Foundation’s bid to Depopulate Asia, Africa

MANILA, July 13, 2012—The world’s largest international pro-life organization has launched a campaign to defend the rights of women, in response to yet another massive effort by the British government and the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation (BMGF) to carry out its depopulation agenda in developing nations. [Read More]

7. Does the Church Hate Persons With Same-Sex Attraction?

Father Paul Check of Courage International puts the question of homosexuality in its proper context.

As the California Proposition 8 marriage case wends its way toward the U.S. Supreme Court, the Church is subjected to increasingly hostile attacks. The NewCivilRightsMovement.com, which reports on same-sex “marriage” issues, tells its readers, “The Catholic Church is the world’s single largest anti-gay hate group” and that Pope Benedict’s defense of the traditional family in January was “preposterous anti-gay hate speech.” [Read More]

8. Abortion Is ‘Directly Linked to Porn’: Anti-Porn Crusader

PHILADELPHIA, Pennsylvania, July 13, 2012 (LifeSiteNews.com) – A group of men campaigning against what they call the “pandemic” of pornography say that their fight is “directly linked” to the fight against abortion. [Read More]

9. Focusing on Wholeness: God’s Plan for Human Sexuality

July 13, 2012 (Breakpoint.org) - When it comes to sexuality, we Christians are mostly known for what we’re against, instead of what we’re for. [Read More]

10. Young Doctor Follows the Divine Physician

Meet a 28-year-old physician who is inspired by Mother Teresa. [Read More]

Sunday, July 8, 2012

Weekly News (Second Week of July 2012)

1. Vatican Astronomer Says 'God Particle' is Misnamed, But Exciting

Rome, Italy, Jul 6, 2012 / 04:03 am (CNA/EWTN News).- While it has no direct bearing on theology or revelation, the scientific discovery hailed by some as the “God particle” is an important achievement, a Vatican astronomer says. [Read More]

2. Christian Meditation Community to Hold Conferences in Manila

MANILA, July 7, 2012—The World Community for Christian Meditation here in the Philippines is organizing a meditation event for fellow practitioners, communities, priests, religious congregations and seminarians on July 11 and 12 at De La Salle University-Taft in Manila. [Read More]

3. Family and Life Commission Confab to Focus on RH Bill

MANILA, July 4, 2012–The Episcopal Commission on Family and Life (ECFL) will conduct a 4-day conference that will focus on the Reproductive Health (RH) bill and other anti-life and anti-family bills. [Read More]

4. Bill Gates Backs Gay Marriage Drive With $100K Gift

OLYMPIA, Wash. (AP) —Microsoft Corp. CEO Steve Ballmer and co-founder Bill Gates have each donated $100,000 to the campaign supporting the state's new gay marriage law, which faces a referendum vote in November. [Read More]

5. The Overhauling of Straight America’: Homosexuals Lay Out Marketing Blueprint [Read More]

6. Underpopulation: Muslim World Faces Devastating Fertility Decline

New York, NY (CFAM/LifeNews) — Fertility rates of Muslim populations around the world have almost literally fallen off a cliff, so steep has been their decline. Policy makers at the UN and elsewhere have barely noticed this. [Read More]

7. Brad Pitt’s Mom Slams Obama on Abortion

SPRINGFIELD, Missouri, July 6, 2012 (LifeSiteNews.com) – Brad Pitt’s mother has shocked the Hollywood star’s fans after slamming President Obama for his views on abortion and same-sex “marriage” in a letter to the local paper in Missouri. [Read More]

8. Ex-Scientology Leader: Messy Tom Cruise Divorce Could Destroy the Allegedly Pro-Abort Cult

LOS ANGELES, California, July 6, 2012 (LifeSiteNews.com) – A former leader in the Church of Scientology is warning that a messy divorce between movie stars Tom Cruise and Katie Holmes could “blow Scientology wide open.” In addition to concerns about harassment and abuse, the cult has faced numerous allegations of coercing members into committing abortions. [Read More]

9. The Hidden Costs of Reproductive Technology

Studies Show True Risks of In Vitro Fertilization

ROME, JULY 6, 2012 (Zenit.org).- The number of babies born as a result of assisted reproduction technologies (ART) has reached an estimated total of 5 million, according to information presented at the 28th annual meeting of the European Society of Human Reproduction and Embryology (ESHRE), which opened on July 1, in Istanbul, Turkey. [Read More]

10. Know Thyself: 10 Reflections from St. Teresa of Avila on the Spiritual Life

St. Teresa of Avila, one of the great doctors of the Church, wrote some of the most beautiful and animated descriptions of the intricacies of the spiritual life. [Read More]

Thursday, July 5, 2012

To Inspire Love: A Return to Modesty

Here is a take on modesty by Catholic author Edward Sri based on a series of Blessed Pope John Paul II's Love and Responsibility.

In our post-sexual-revolution world, skimpy dresses, mini-skirts, tiny bikinis, low-rise pants, and low-cut shirts have become part of the mainstream attire for women today. And anyone who might raise questions about the appropriateness of such dress is viewed as “rigid,” “old fashioned,” or “out of touch” with modern style. Modesty is no longer a part of our culture’s vocabulary. Though most people sense they wouldn’t want their own daughters dressing like Madonna and Britney Spears, few have the courage to bring up the topic of modesty, and even fewer know what to say if they did.

John Paul II — then Karol Wojtyla — in his book Love and Responsibility, offers much needed wisdom on the nature of modesty and how dressing modestly is crucial for strengthening our relationships with the opposite sex.

The Experience of Shame

Wojtyla begins his treatment on modesty with an explanation of a common human experience: shame. Shame involves a tendency to conceal something — not just bad things, such as sins, weaknesses, and embarrassing moments, but also good things that we desire to keep from coming out in the open. For example, someone who performs a good deed may prefer that his action go unnoticed. If he is complemented publicly, he may feel embarrassed, not because he did something bad, but because he did not want to draw attention to his deed. Similarly, a student who receives high marks on an exam may feel embarrassed when the teacher praises her in front of the whole class, since she wished to share her good grade only with her closest friends and family. There are many good things that we wish to keep hidden from public eyes, and we feel shame if they are brought out into the open.

This helps us understand one of the most powerful experiences of shame: sexual shame. Why do human persons tend to conceal body parts associated with sexuality? Why do men and women instinctively cover themselves quickly if someone of the opposite sex accidentally walks in on them while they are changing their clothes or going to the bathroom? Wojtyla explains that this tendency to conceal those parts of the body that make it male or female is itself not the essence of shame, but a manifestation of a deeper tendency to conceal the sexual values themselves, “particularly in so far as they constitute in the mind of a particular person ‘a potential object of enjoyment’ for persons of the other sex” (p. 176).

For example, a woman may instinctively sense that if certain parts of her body are exposed, a man might view her merely for her sexual values as an object of pleasure. Indeed, those particular parts of her body reveal her sexual values so powerfully that a man can be drawn primarily not to her true value as a person, but to her sexual values which give him sensual pleasure in his glances and imagination.

That is why we tend to veil the sexual values connected with particular parts of the body — not because they are bad, but because they can overshadow the greater value of the person. Wojtyla thus says sexual shame is “a natural form of self-defense for the person” (p. 182). It helps prevent the person from being treated as an object of enjoyment. Thus, the concealing of sexual values through modesty of dress is meant to provide the arena in which something much more than a mere sensual reaction might take place. Modesty of dress helps protect interactions between the sexes from falling into utilitarianism, and thus creates the possibility of authentic love for the person to develop.

Shame Absorbed by Love

Yet within the context of betrothed love — a mature self-giving love of a husband and wife — there is no longer any reason for shame. True love ensures that sentimental and sensual experiences “are imbued with affirmation of the value of the person to such an extent that it is impossible for the will to regard the other person as an object for use” (pp. 183–84). Each person has complete confidence in the other’s selfless love. They each have total trust that they won’t be treated merely as an object for the other person’s pleasure. Hence, their emotional and sensual enjoyment is grounded in full self-giving love and a profound sense of responsibility for the other person.

The need for shame has been absorbed by mature love for a person: it is no longer necessary for a lover to conceal from the beloved or from himself a disposition to enjoy, since this has been absorbed by true love ruled by the will. Affirmation of the value of the person so thoroughly permeates all the sensual and emotional reactions connected with the sexual values that the will is not threatened by a utilitarian outlook. (p. 184)

This kind of trust, however, can only be found fully in betrothed love. Only in a healthy, thriving marriage is shame absorbed by love in this way. That’s why we want to dress modestly when we are with members of the opposite sex to whom we are not married. Outside the context of betrothed love, we must be careful with the unveiling of sexual values or else we will set ourselves up to be used by the opposite sex.

Avoiding Objectification

Now we are prepared to explore the three aspects of sexual shame presented by Wojtyla. We have already touched upon the first aspect — how shame leads us to conceal sexual values so that they don’t produce a merely utilitarian reaction in another person. A woman should want to avoid dressing in a way that deliberately draws attention to her sexual values and obscures her value as a person. Certain types of clothing (or lack thereof) are bound to elicit a sensual reaction that puts her in a position of being treated as an object of enjoyment.

But here some women may object: “Why is it my responsibility to dress modestly? If a man struggles with lustful thoughts, that’s his problem, not mine.” But this objection misses Wojtyla’s point. The purpose of modesty is not merely to help prevent men from stumbling into impure thoughts. Modesty of dress is primarily meant to protect the woman herself. It helps keep the woman from being treated as an object for sexual pleasure.

Wojtyla offers two important insights that help make sense of this. On one hand, we must remember that human beings are fallen. Thus, it is not easy for us to avoid a utilitarian attitude when we see the body of the opposite sex. The attitude of “I shouldn’t have to worry about how I dress — that’s the man’s problem” naively fails to take original sin seriously. As Wojtyla explains, “Man, alas, is not such a perfect being that the sight of the body of another person . . . can arouse in him merely a disinterested liking which develops into an innocent affection. In practice, it also arouses concupiscence, or a wish to enjoy concentrated on sexual values with no regard for the value of the person” (p. 190). As a result of original sin, the human will “too readily accepts the sensual reaction and reduces another person . . . to the role of an object for enjoyment” (p. 191). And when this happens, Wojtyla calls it “depersonalization by sexualization.” The woman is not viewed for who she is as a person. She is reduced to a potential object for sexual pleasure. Modesty of dress helps women to avoid being depersonalized in this way.

On the other hand, Wojtyla goes on to remind us that men struggle with sensuality a lot more than women. Therefore, it is not surprising that women may have difficulty understanding what really constitutes modest dress, for sensuality is not as strong in them as it is in men. “Since a woman does not find in herself the sensuality of which a man as a rule cannot but be aware in himself she does not feel so great a need to conceal ‘the body as a potential object of enjoyment’” (p. 177). Consequently, women often don’t realize that a certain way of acting or dressing may actually be immodest. And they may have absolutely no idea that the way they are dressing may be setting themselves up to be viewed by a man as a mere object for sexual pleasure. “Very often, a woman does not regard a particular way of dressing as shameless . . . although some man, or indeed many men, may find it so” (p. 189).

Concealing Our Reactions

The second aspect of sexual shame is its tendency to conceal our own utilitarian reactions to the opposite sex when we treat them as objects for our enjoyment. We realize that a human person is not an object for use, and we feel ashamed if we treat people that way in our glances, thoughts, or imagination. Deep down, a man senses, “I must not touch her, not even with a deeply hidden wish to enjoy her, for she cannot be an object for use” (p. 180).

Consider what often happens when a man is staring at a woman lustfully and she notices it. As soon as he is caught, he quickly turns his eyes away because he feels ashamed of what he was doing. He does not want his utilitarian attitude toward her to be exposed. He knows he shouldn’t treat a woman that way and he immediately looks away.

Inspiring Love

The third and most important aspect of sexual shame is its connection with love. Ultimately, modesty seeks to inspire love — true love for the person, not just a sexual reaction to a woman’s body. Deep in a woman’s heart is a longing to inspire and experience love. Thus, a woman should dress in a way that inspires love for her as a person. But dressing immodestly hinders the possibilities for true love to develop, for it draws attention to her sexual values to such an extent that it overshadows her value as a person. In other words, a woman dressing immodestly may deliberately elicit a sexual reaction to her body. And she may attract men to view her body as an object of enjoyment. But she doesn’t inspire men to love her as a person.

Here we see that modesty of dress is about so much more than helping men avoid falling into sin. And it is not simply a “defensive reflex” protecting women from being used. In the end, modesty is about inspiring a reaction to the value of the person — not just to the sexual values. As Wojtyla explains, “sexual modesty is not a flight from love, but on the contrary the opening of a way towards it. The spontaneous need to conceal mere sexual values bound up with the person is the natural way to the discovery of the value of the person as such” (p. 179).

(Source: Integrated Catholic Life)


True Modesty is not:
  • a set of rules and regulations, laid out by others on what is appropriate
  • a strict style - such as wearing dresses all the time, in every circumstance
  • a certain look - only skirts below the knee, etc.
  • a mindset of being 'holy' or superior
  • a focus on self - how we look

Modesty is first and foremost an attitude of the heart. An attitude of submission to the Lord and the desire to please Him in our thoughts, actions and dress. It is not to please others or to gain attention, but is the act of being mindful of others, being careful to avoid causing a brother to stumble or succumb to temptation. A by-product of holiness that reflects in our attitude and dress. As holiness cannot be produced, it must be formed in the heart and then it extends outwardly. Modesty cannot be forced or put on, but it begins with that desire to please the Lord and allow Him to change us from the inside out.

Modesty requires grace. As we receive grace, we must extend grace. There are no 'levels' of modesty. We don't ever 'arrive'! It is a constant surrender of our will to have the will of God molded in us. But it creates an inner beauty that always points others to our Lord.

(Source: Joyfull Living Blog)

Monday, July 2, 2012

Weekly News (First Week of July 2012)

1. Defending Religious Freedom

Threats at Home and Abroad

ROME, JUNE 28, 2012 (Zenit.org).- As the Church in the United States continues its campaign to defend religious liberty, with its “Fortnight for Freedom” campaign a recently-published book examined the variety of threats. [Read More]

2. Church to Oppose Mega Casino Project

MANILA, June 29, 2012— If the government would allow the proliferation of more casino in the country, it must prepare for the consequences of more addicts, stealing and putting more stress on their families, a ranking Catholic bishop said. [Read More]

3. Use Funds For RH to Address Child Labor Problem – Bishop

MANILA, July 2, 2012— Spend funds intended for contraceptives to solve the burgeoning problem of child labor, Catholic Bishops’ Conference of the Philippines (CBCP) president Archbishop Jose Palma told government officials during a recent interview over Radio Veritas. [Read More]

4. President Using Military to Advance LGBT Agenda

A conservative military watchdog thinks the recent government-sanctioned events in honor of the military's homosexuals will spread to bases around the world if Barack Obama is re-elected president. [Read More]

5. Facebook Founder Chris Hughes Donates $100,000 to Pro Homosexual 'Marriage’ Forces in Maine

PORTLAND, Maine — Supporters of same-sex marriage exceeded the $100,000 they needed to raise to receive a matching contribution from a co-founder of Facebook. [Read More]

6. Archbishop Fulton Sheen Beatification Could Come 'Very Quickly'

Peoria, Ill., Jun 30, 2012 / 07:09 am (CNA/EWTN News).- A priest connected with the cause of Archbishop Fulton Sheen has said the “historic speed” with which he was declared venerable could be a sign that next steps to the beatification and canonization of the famous U.S. television evangelist and author might proceed at a rapid pace. [Read More]

7. Forced Abortion: The Most Despicable Human Rights Violation

On June 2nd, a despicable human rights violation was committed, and the world took notice. Chinese woman Feng Jianmei was dragged from her home, beaten, and forced to abort her seven month old unborn child, because it was her second pregnancy. [Read More]

8. Leading California Gay Rights Leader Arrested Over Child Porn Possession

June 27, 2012 (LifeSiteNews.com) – A prominent leader in the gay-rights movement in California headed to jail on June 22 after police say they caught him in possession of graphic images of toddlers engaged in lewd acts of sodomy and oral sex. [Read More]

9. Pro-Lifers on Obamacare Ruling: ‘Abortion Is the Greatest Social Injustice’

(CNSNews.com) – Pro-life activists gathered on the steps of the Supreme Court on Thursday expressed disappointment in the court’s ruling on the Affordable Care Act, which upheld all of the law except the expansion of Medicaid – including the requirement that Americans buy health insurance plans that pay for contraceptives and abortion. [Read More]

10. How Will Gay ‘Marriage’ Hurt Us? Here’s How.

June 28, 2012 (Breakpoint.org) - Christians are often asked by gay activists why they oppose same-sex “marriage.” “How does our marriage hurt you?” they ask. [Read More]