Tag Archives: motherhood

Facebook Pro-Life Quotes of the day…

“Life is always a good.” — John Paul II

 

Mrs. Smith is thanking God today for babies and children. Whether you have children or not, whether they are grown up or not – we should all try to keep babies and children in our lives – we get way more from them than we could ever give them. We NEED our babies – please pray for an end to abortion.

Mrs. Cassiday Well said J – this is a message many of our medical personnel need to recognize as well. Just because a child isn’t going to be “perfect” in man’s eyes, doesn’t mean that child isn’t perfect in God’s eyes (or their mothers)….I still get angry over how many doctors suggested that I terminate Andrew….I still remember the look on the world renowned Pediatric Neurosurgeon when I calmly asked him to stop telling me to kill my child because it was never going to happen……

EDITOR NOTE: Keep these beautiful words in mind as you read about this terrible quiet revolution…

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Prop 8: Federal Decision Pending on Future of Marriage

Federal Case to Overturn Prop 8 Goes to Judge

 

This from Bill May of Catholics for the Common Good Institute followed by story:

On Wednesday, I attended the closing arguments on the federal case to overturn Prop 8. You cannot get a good idea of what really went on from media coverage, so I have provided a summary and analysis on the website at http://www.ccgaction.org/index.php?q=marriage/CA/prop8trialclosingarg.

Charles Cooper did a great job of getting key points into the record that should make it very difficult for the Judge to do anything but uphold Prop 8. Having said that, the decision could go either way. If Prop 8 is overturned, it will be immediately appealed.

I have provided clarity on the most compelling arguments, which should be helpful to you in explaining what happened to friends and family members.

As you will see, a bad discussion on this case could completely remove the definition of marriage from the realm of political debate, just as Roe v. Wade created a constitutional right to abortion. This case will likely go to the U.S. Supreme Court and could affect the entire nation.

As I noted at the end of the article, conversations between attorneys and the judge highlighted the great amount of confusion there is about what marriage is, and its relationship to children and parenting.

The debate is complicated by many factors, among which are the promotion of alternative families in which depriving children of mothers or fathers is considered normal, redefinition of motherhood and fatherhood as roles rather than biological realities, artificial means of procreation through IVF, and children unwittingly being reduced to objects for adult fulfillment rather than gifts of equal dignity. The fight to protect and promote marriage between a man and a woman cannot be divorced from these factors.

This continues to highlight the need for training large numbers of people in the new and very effective techniques that have been developed in conjunction with the Stand with Children strategy to promote the centrality and integrity of marriage for children and society.

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SAN FRANCISCO, June 16, 2010 – The message delivered to Federal District Judge Vaughn Walker by Prop 8 proponents during the closing arguments at the trial to redefine marriage in San Francisco was clear. The voters have overwhelming authority and rational reasons for defining marriage between a man and a woman. The voters’ decision to pass Prop 8 cannot be overturned unless the plaintiffs negate every single claim of state interest for promoting the uniquely pervasive institution that channels procreative activity into a stable relationship.

Judge Walker noticeably stiffened in his chair as Charles Cooper, lead counsel for the defense, further stated that even if he concludes that every claim made by the plaintiffs is true, he could still not rule against Prop 8 unless he found that all of the rational reasons for protecting marriage were false. “It is a judicial tsunami they are asking you to sail into.”

Plaintiffs’ counsel claimed that people who voted for Prop 8 could only have done so “through irrational or dark motive, some animus, some kind of bigotry.” After citing myriad U.S. Supreme Court cases going back to the late 1800’s that affirmed the public interest in marriage, Cooper responded by telling the judge that the plaintiffs’ charge was “a slur on 7 million Californians It’s a slur on 70 of 108 judges who have upheld as constitutional and rational the decision of voters and legislatures to preserve the traditional definition of marriage.”

Over the course of his closing argument, Cooper was masterful at weaving in pertinent legal authorities that are not only important for this judge’s deliberations, but are most critical to have in the record for appeals likely leading to the U.S. Supreme Court.

The Roe v Wade of Marriage?

At the end of his argument, Cooper took the opportunity to urge the judge to let the debate on marriage continue by upholding Prop 8. Cooper’s words were more significant than one might imagine, because if Prop 8 had failed, — or if the judge decides to overturn it and his decision is upheld –, it would be legally discriminatory to even argue that marriage between a man and a woman has a higher value to society than same-sex relationships.

As the plaintiff’s counsel rose to rebut Cooper’s argument, Judge Walker seemed to turn pensive and asked about detrimental consequences of “constitutionalizing” social change and taking it out of the “political realm,” effectively ending debate. He obscurely referred to the example of the Roe v. Wade case, without mentioning it by name, and the resulting polarization. Roe v. Wade overturned every restriction on abortion across the country and ignited shock waves that are still reverberating 37 years later. Walker suggested that overturning Prop 8 could lead to the same kind of situation that has “plagued our politics for 30 years” and could be dangerous for the future of the same-sex “marriage” movement.

Plaintiffs argued that because of discrimination against homosexuals the must be treated as a protected class requiring a stricter standard be used since the plaintiffs contention is that Prop 8 discriminates against this class of people. Cooper pointed out that for homosexuality to be a “suspect class” under the equal protection clause of the constitution, homosexuality must be immutable.

Evidence provided during the trial by one of the plaintiffs’ witnesses is that about two-thirds of lesbians change their sexual orientation at least once over the course of their lives – contradicting the immutability claim. The judge responded that discrimination based on religion is protected and religious beliefs can change, but Cooper reminded him that protection of religious beliefs is covered by the first amendment guaranteeing religious liberty creating the basis for equal protection clause.

The performance of former U.S. Solicitor General Ted Olsen, the attorney who presented the closing arguments for the plaintiffs was somewhat surprising for someone who has argued a number of cases before the U.S. Supreme Court. His arguments seemed very general and to be more directed toward repeating campaign-style rhetoric than legal argument. This plays well with gay “rights” communities and with the media, who enthusiastically applauded when the plaintiffs’ legal team was introduced at a closed press conference following the hearing.

Olsen argued that procreation has never been a condition for marriage and therefore it cannot be about procreation. There is much procreation taking place outside of marriage as less people are getting married and more people are cohabitating. Marriage has changed over the last 30 years, he claimed, and is breaking down on its own attempting to demonstrate that it could not be adversely effected by permitting gays and lesbians to marry. If the state’s interest were to channel people who procreate into marriage, there would be no no-fault divorce laws that channel people out of marriage. New York is the only state without no-fault divorce and it is expected to adopt it soon.

Olsen tried to equate restrictions on same-sex “marriage” to attacks on the dignity of blacks in past marriage laws, and a contention contended that withdrawing same-sex “marriage” rights contributes to stigmatizing gays. He referred to the fact that 18,000 same sex couples married during the period from May 2008, when the California Supreme Court struck down the Defense of Marriage Act passed by the voters in 2000, to the date of passage of Prop 8 that November.

For some reason, Olsen felt it important to draw attention to testimony by Dr. Nancy Cott of Harvard about how slaves were denied marriage and somehow linking this with bans on interracial marriage. Olsen continued to misrepresent court decisions striking down interracial marriage barriers as a redefinition of marriage to bar racial discrimination against adults in loving relationships. Cooper, on the other hand, pointed out that the right to marry in those cases assumed marriage between men and woman as the justices pointed out was “fundamental to the existence and survival of the human race.” He noted that these restrictions “grew out of . . . white supremacist theory,” meaning these laws were about eugenics – racial purity and the procreative nature of relationships between men and women.

Olsen tried to argue that precedent for overturning Prop 8 could be found in the Lawrence v. Texas decision that overturned a law criminalizing private sexual behavior. He argued that marriage is also a private behavior. Cooper countered that Lawrence focused on a criminal statute, not a statutory privilege created by the state. Further, Cooper cited Crawford v Board of Education, a 1982 California case in which the U.S. Supreme Court upheld the rights of voters to pass an initiative to reduce state requirements for school busing to the federal standards. The national standard for marriage established in the federal law (DOMA), and by 40 states that have adopted marriage protection amendments or legislation, is that marriage is between a man and a woman.

Olson also pointed to Romer v. Evans, a Colorado case on an initiative amending the state constitution to ban all legislation at any level of government that would provide any protections against discrimination based on sexual orientation. The U.S. Supreme Court found that there was no rational reason to adopt something so broad and overturned it on that basis. Cooper pointed out that is not the case in California. Prop 8 is very narrow and there are clear reasons for retaining the traditional definition of marriage, which the plaintiffs have not refuted.

Cooper further cited a New York Court of Appeals case upholding marriage and the Lofton v Florida upholding a ban on gay adoptions by the 11th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals. Both courts cited common sense alone as being sufficient as rational reasons for adopting the laws. No one knows how long it will take Judge Walker to arrive at a decision. It could be a couple of weeks or it could be several months. There is no deadline.

As a closing note, conversations between attorneys and the judge highlighted the great amount of confusion there is about what marriage is, and its relationship to children and parenting.

The debate is complicated by many factors, among which are the promotion of alternative families in which deprived of mothers or fathers is considered normal, redefinition of motherhood and fatherhood as roles rather than biological realities, artificial means of procreation through IVF, and children unwittingly being reduced to objects for adult fulfillment rather than gifts of equal dignity. The fight to protect and promote marriage between a man and a woman cannot be divorced from these factors.

This continues to highlight the need for training large numbers of people in the new and very effective techniques that have been developed in conjunction with the Stand with Children strategy to promote the centrality and integrity of marriage for children and society.

  

Please support this effort with a tax-deductible donation to Catholics for the Common Good Institute.

    Or simply mail a check to:
    Catholics for the Common Good Institute
    P.O. Box 320038
    San Francisco, CA 94132

Our Lady of Guadalupe our patroness and guide, pray for us.

For the Common Good,

Bill May
Chairman, Catholics for the Common Good
415 651 4171
415 738 0421 (Fax)

Brother in Arms (pic)

Bram, Ever. Ever, Bram…

[Click To Enlarge]

..And they share birthdays 1 day apart… (Good luck with that parents!)

Happy Birthday Bram– Grandpapa

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Pope Benedict XVI Homily on the Solemnity of Mary: Peace, A Divine Gift to Be Constantly Implored

Dear Brothers and Sisters,

Today, we are beginning a new year and Christian hope takes us by the hand; let us begin it by invoking divine Blessings upon it and imploring, through the intercession of Mary, Mother of God, the gift of peace: for our families, for our cities, for the whole world. With this hope, I greet all of you present here, starting with the distinguished Ambassadors of the Diplomatic Corps accredited to the Holy See who have gathered at this celebration on the occasion of the World Day of Peace. I greet Cardinal Tarcisio Bertone, my Secretary of State, and Cardinal Renato Raffaele Martino and all members of the Pontifical Council for Justice and Peace. I am particularly grateful to them for their commitment to spread the Message for the World Day of Peace whose theme this year is: “The human family, a community of peace”.

Peace. In the First Reading from the Book of Numbers we heard the invocation: “The Lord… give you peace” (6:26); may the Lord grant peace to each one of you, to your families and to the whole world. We all aspire to live in peace but true peace, the peace proclaimed by the Angels on Christmas night, is not merely a human triumph or the fruit of political agreements; it is first and foremost a divine gift to be ceaselessly implored, and at the same time a commitment to be carried forward patiently, always remaining docile to the Lord’s commands. This year, in my Message for today’s World Day of Peace, I wanted to highlight the close relationship that exists between the family and building peace in the world. The natural family, founded on the marriage of a man and a woman, is “a “cradle of life and love'” and “the first and indispensable teacher of peace”. For this very reason the family is “the primary “agency’ of peace”, and “the denial or even the restriction of the rights of the family, by obscuring the truth about man, threatens the very foundations of peace” (cf. nn. 1-5). Since humanity is a “great family”, if it wants to live in peace it cannot fail to draw inspiration from those values on which the family community is based and stands. The providential coincidence of various recurrences spur us this year to make an even greater effort to achieve peace in the world. Sixty years ago, in 1948, the General Assembly of the United Nations published the “Universal Declaration of Human Rights”; 40 years ago my venerable Predecessor Paul VI celebrated the first World Day of Peace; this year, in addition, we will be commemorating the 25th anniversary of the Holy See’s adoption of the “Charter of the Rights of the Family“. “In the light of these significant anniversaries” – I am repeating here what I wrote precisely at the end of the Message – “I invite every man and woman to have a more lively sense of belonging to the one human family, and to strive to make human coexistence increasingly reflect this conviction, which is essential for the establishment of true and lasting peace” [n. 15].

Our thoughts now turn spontaneously to Our Lady, whom we invoke today as the Mother of God. It was Pope Paul VI who moved to 1 January the Feast of the Divine Motherhood of Mary, which was formerly celebrated on 11 October. Indeed, even before the liturgical reform that followed the Second Vatican Council, the memorial of the circumcision of Jesus on the eighth day after his birth – as a sign of submission to the law, his official insertion in the Chosen People – used to be celebrated on the first day of the year and the Feast of the Name of Jesus was celebrated the following Sunday. We perceive a few traces of these celebrations in the Gospel passage that has just been proclaimed, in which St Luke says that eight days after his birth the Child was circumcised and was given the name “Jesus”, “the name given by the Angel before he was conceived in [his Mother’s]… womb” (Lk 2:21). Today’s feast, therefore, as well as being a particularly significant Marian feast, also preserves a strongly Christological content because, we might say, before the Mother, it concerns the Son, Jesus, true God and true Man.

The Apostle Paul refers to the mystery of the divine motherhood of Mary,the Theotokos, in his Letter to the Galatians. “When the time had fully come”, he writes, “God sent forth his Son, born of woman, born under the law” (4:4). We find the mystery of the Incarnation of the Divine Word and the Divine Motherhood of Mary summed up in a few words: the Virgin’s great privilege is precisely to be Mother of the Son who is God. The most logical and proper place for this Marian feast is therefore eight days after Christmas. Indeed, in the night of Bethlehem, when “she gave birth to her first-born son” (Lk 2:7), the prophesies concerning the Messiah were fulfilled. “The virgin shall be with child and bear a son”, Isaiah had foretold (7:14); “Behold, you will conceive in your womb and bear a son”, the Angel Gabriel said to Mary (Lk 1:31); and again, an Angel of the Lord, the Evangelist Matthew recounts, appeared to Joseph in a dream to reassure him and said: “Do not fear to take Mary for your wife, for that which is conceived in her is of the Holy Spirit; she will bear a son” (Mt 1:20-21).

The title “Mother of God”, together with the title “Blessed Virgin”, is the oldest on which all the other titles with which Our Lady was venerated are based, and it continues to be invoked from generation to generation in the East and in the West. A multitude of hymns and a wealth of prayers of the Christian tradition refer to the mystery of her divine motherhood, such as, for example, a Marian antiphon of the Christmas season, Alma Redemptoris mater, with which we pray in these words: “Tu quae genuisti, natura mirante, tuum sanctum Genitorem, Virgo prius ac posterius – You, in the wonder of all creation, have brought forth your Creator, Mother ever virgin”. Dear brothers and sisters, let us today contemplate Mary, ever-virgin Mother of the Only-Begotten Son of the Father; let us learn from her to welcome the Child who was born for us in Bethlehem. If we recognize in the Child born of her the Eternal Son of God and accept him as our one Saviour, we can be called and we really are children of God: sons in the Son. The Apostle writes: “God sent forth his Son, born of woman, born under the law, to redeem those who were under the law, so that we might receive adoption as sons” (Gal 4:4).

The Evangelist Luke repeats several times that Our Lady meditated silently on these extraordinary events in which God had involved her. We also heard this in the short Gospel passage that the Liturgy presents to us today. “Mary kept all these things, pondering them in her heart” (Lk 2:19).

The Greek verb used, sumbállousa, literally means “piecing together” and makes us think of a great mystery to be discovered little by little. Although the Child lying in a manger looks like all children in the world, at the same time he is totally different: he is the Son of God, he is God, true God and true man. This mystery – the Incarnation of the Word and the divine Motherhood of Mary – is great and certainly far from easy to understand with the human mind alone.

Yet, by learning from Mary, we can understand with our hearts what our eyes and minds do not manage to perceive or contain on their own. Indeed, this is such a great gift that only through faith are we granted to accept it, while not entirely understanding it. And it is precisely on this journey of faith that Mary comes to meet us as our support and guide. She is mother because she brought forth Jesus in the flesh; she is mother because she adhered totally to the Father’s will. St Augustine wrote: “The divine motherhood would have been of no value to her had Christ not borne her in his heart, with a destiny more fortunate than the moment when she conceived him in the flesh” (De Sancta Virginitate,3, 3). And in her heart Mary continued to treasure, to “piece together” the subsequent events of which she was to be a witness and protagonist, even to the death on the Cross and the Resurrection of her Son Jesus.

Dear brothers and sisters, it is only by pondering in the heart, in other words, by piecing together and finding unity in all we experience, that, following Mary, we can penetrate the mystery of a God who was made man out of love and who calls us to follow him on the path of love; a love to be expressed daily by generous service to the brethren. May the new year which we are confidently beginning today be a time in which to advance in that knowledge of the heart, which is the wisdom of saints. Let us pray, as we heard in the First Reading, that the Lord may “make his face to shine” upon us, “and be gracious” to us (cf. Nm 6:24-7) and bless us. We may be certain of it: if we never tire of seeking his Face, if we never give in to the temptation of discouragement and doubt, if also among the many difficulties we encounter we always remain anchored to him, we will experience the power of his love and his mercy. May the fragile Child who today the Virgin shows to the world make us peacemakers, witnesses of him, the Prince of Peace. Amen!

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