In North Korea, Tears for fear

December 19, 2011 by  
Filed under Patrick's Blog

I’m pretty sure that some, perhaps even many, of these poor, battered, starving North Koreans are only “weeping” because Big Brother is keeping careful track of who does and who doesn’t. Sure, some of them have no doubt been brainwashed to believe the Big Lie, but not all. Now that Dear Leader has died and gone on to his eternal reward, I hope North Korea can somehow rid itself of the atheist Communist cancer that has subjugated it for so long. Maybe a lot of them aren’t cyring for Kim Jong Il, but for themselves, as they reflect with fear and despair on their horribly bleak predicament.

Look at these spectacular pictures from the 90th floor of One World Trade Center

December 16, 2011 by  
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The day I flew into LaGuardia Airport early this year, I missed this. From my vantage point above Lower Manhattan, I couldn’t pick out this tower from the among the other high-rises clustered around what, a little over 10 years ago, had been the World Trade Center. I wasn’t sure what to look for. Now I know. Since then, One World Trade Center has been going up so rapidly that it’s estimated it has reached the rapidity of “one story per day.” Impressive. And what’s beyond impressive are these recent images from the new edifice’s 90th floor. Wow. Just wow.

I admit, I can’t help but think about how utterly horrifying it must have been to fall from that height on September 11, 2001. May God rest the souls of all those poor victims of terrorism.

According to the Daily Mail:

When it is completed, it will be the tallest building in Manhattan and one of incredible poignancy for New York City.  One World Trade Center reached its 90th floor this week – with just 14 more floors to go until the top. The structure can now be seen from all five boroughs of the city. Stunning pictures showed how the area has been reborn since the 9/11 attacks more than a decade ago where almost 3,000 people lost their lives in the worst ever terrorist attack on American soil.

 

“Change”: This movie will mess you up . . . in a very good way

December 9, 2011 by  
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Watching this short film will be 10 minutes of your busy life  well-spent. One of my Facebook friends reacted this way: “If you do not have the time to make a three day retreat this advent, why not make it a ten minute retreat right here and now?” Personally, I couldn’t help but think of the reality that Jesus Christ is truly present to us in our neighbor, both when we serve Him (Matt. 25:31-46) and when He serves us (Luke 24:13-52). I would love to know your reactions to “Change.” Please watch. Please share.

A look at the biblical foreshadowing of The Blessed Virgin Mary’s Immaculate Conception

December 8, 2011 by  
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I wrote this article 20 years ago to give an overview of some of the biblical aspects of the Immaculate Conception of the Blessed Virgin Mary.  Pope Pius IX, who defined this dogma, declared that Our Lady, “in the first instance of her conception, by a singular privilege and grace granted by God, in view of the merits of Jesus Christ, the Savior of the human race, was preserved exempt from all stain of original sin” (Ineffabilis Deus, 1854).

His face stiffened, and his eyes narrowed to slits. Until now the Calvary Chapel pastor had been calm as he “shared the gospel” with me, but when I mentioned my belief in Mary’s Immaculate Conception, his attitude changed.

“The problem with you Roman Catholics,” he said, his forefinger stabbing the air a few inches from my face, “is that you’ve added extra baggage to the gospel. How can you call yourselves Christians when you cling to unbiblical traditions like the Immaculate Conception? It’s not in the Bible–it was invented by the Roman Catholic system in 1854. Besides, Mary couldn’t have been sinless, only God is sinless. If she were without sin she would be God!”

At least the minister got the date right, 1854 being the year Pope Pius IX infallibly defined the doctrine of Mary’s Immaculate Conception, but that’s as far as his accuracy went. His reaction was typical of many Evangelicals. He was adamant that the Catholic emphasis on Mary’s sinlessness was an unbearable affront to the unique holiness of God, especially as manifested in Jesus Christ. . . . (continue reading)

Ah. So that’s where babies come from

December 5, 2011 by  
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Can you guess what’s in your home that costs $65,000 a gallon?

November 28, 2011 by  
Filed under Patrick's Blog

I bet you can’t. But here’s a hint:  It’s in your home right now. In fact, a batch of it is very probably within 3 feet of where you are seated. It’s vastly more expensive than gold. And guess what else: You go to a store  routinely and pay for it. Can you guess what it is? By now, you probably can.

P.S. For more examples of shockingly high mark ups you pay on a 9 other common items, be sure to press the “next” link just below this part of the article.

This unlikely video can teach us Christians something about getting out of our comfort zones

November 28, 2011 by  
Filed under Patrick's Blog

“And do not fear those who kill the body but cannot kill the soul; rather fear him who can destroy both soul and body in hell. Are not two sparrows sold for a penny? And not one of them will fall to the ground without your Father’s will. But even the hairs of your head are all numbered. Fear not, therefore; you are of more value than many sparrows. So every one who acknowledges me before men, I also will acknowledge before my Father who is in heaven; but whoever denies me before men, I also will deny before my Father who is in heaven” (Matthew 10:28-33).

And you thought “Black Friday” in the U.S. is the epitome of grotesque and demeaning?

November 25, 2011 by  
Filed under Patrick's Blog

Then you haven’t seen this. For me, the best part of this show (if “best” can properly be used as an adjective in this case, which I don’t think it can) is the sustained expression of disbelief and consternation on the faces of the show’s judges. Oh, and I like the music.

Blessed Miguel Pro’s final, defiant challenge to his atheist persecutors

November 23, 2011 by  
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Blessed Miguel Pro is a prominent example of Christian heroism in the twentieth century. The indefatigable Jesuit priest was martyred by the Mexican government in 1927 for performing his priestly duties.

Born on January 13, 1891, Miguel Pro Juarez was the eldest son of Miguel Pro and Josefa Juarez. His birthplace, the humble central Mexican village of Guadalupe, was especially fitting in view of his intense, lifelong devotion to Our Lady of Guadalupe, Patroness of the Americas.

Miguelito, as his doting family called him, was, from an early age, intensely spiritual and equally intense in his mischievousness. From the time he could speak he had the reputation of being a motor-mouth, frequently exasperating his family with his humor and practical jokes, a trait which remained with him into adult-hood.

As a child he had an unbridled precociousness that sometimes went too far, tossing him into near-death accidents and illnesses. On regaining consciousness after one of these episodes, young Miguel opened his eyes and blurted out to his frantic parents, “I want some cocol” (a colloquial term for his favorite sweet bread). Cocol became his nickname, which he would later adopt as a code name during his clandestine priestly ministry. . . . (continue reading)

Three words I never expected to see together in a news headline

November 23, 2011 by  
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“Amish Haircut Attacks.” One might assume it is the name selected by an imaginative garage band or perhaps it’s a lost-in-translation title of a Pennsylvania-German language B movie. But one would be mistaken. In fact, the “Amish Haircut Attacks” in question were a real and quite bizarre series of depredations involving “forcefully cutting the beards and hair of Amish men and women.”

Several members of the group carried out the attacks in September and October by forcefully cutting the beards and hair of Amish men and women, authorities have said. Cutting the hair is a highly offensive act to the Amish, who believe the Bible instructs women to let their hair grow long and men to grow beards and stop shaving once they marry.

The attacks struck at the core of the Amish identity and tested their principles. They strongly believe that they must be forgiving in order for God to forgive them, which often means handing out their own punishment and not reporting crimes to law enforcement. . . .

Aside from the Associated Press article’s clumsy and potentially misleading word order (Amish women don’t have beards), another weird element of this sad story is that the surname of one of the principle suspects is, get this, Mullet.

 

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