I Never Knew Your Name. Thank you!

A Catholic Military Chaplain deployed in Afghanistan

This “thank you” goes out to all of the Roman Catholic Military Chaplains around the world.

Thank you for suffering tireless work at the hands of a wartorn “death culture” world. Thank you for getting up before the sun and retiring after the last soldier retreats. Thank you for mustering the added strength needed for dealing with the feminine face of the military, such that it is, in this ever-changing cultural landscape of soldiering. Thank for weathering an adminstration seemingly unsympathetic to the particular needs of Catholics in the military. For those of you out there, and you are many, thank you for risking bullets and bombs to bring spiritual aid and comfort to our troops on the frontlines.

Many will never announce his work done in anonymity and tireless obedience and humility. You are away from your families and friends. Your spiritual needs are placed way behind those of the needs of the soldiers under your care. You have to face day after day of military food or MRE’s in the field, the physical discomfort of wearing armored gear when you are in the field, bugs and weather, and less than pleasant living conditions, little or no time for your own personal worship and study, extended tours, canceled leaves, alienation, and loneliness of the worst kind. It really truly often is just you and God out there.

Thank you!

Bravery seems a small word to describe what soldiers endure for the sake of freedom, multiply that by seven, for what unarmed Military Chaplains endure. You are often the first one to arrive (even before the commander) when the medic is there ministering to a wounded, or dying soldier, and often the last person he or she will ever see in this life.

I mourned the loss of a prayer-life during basic training. I got to go on a Christian retreat at an Evangelical retreat house after the first month of training. There I learned of a military Chaplain whose vested interest it was to hault the activities of the Planned Parenthood located on the base. The evangelicals (knowing I was Catholic) directed me to him urging me to meet him before my time in tradoc ended there. I didn’t know if I could fit it in as we were really tethered to the Drill Sergeants’ scheduled dictates during Basic.

I showed up on his doorstep for confession not realizing this was the priest that they had told me about. My confession was probably the same as the last 100 hundred soldiers that he had seen.

A lot of people don’t know this but the confession lines are long at military bases. I was cross with other trainees, I needed to be more charitable, and to be more Christ-like. These priests don’t lament the fact of an underused Sacrament. This is not a reality for them.

My turn comes up and I moan and groan about not being able to pray. He told me to pray during sit-ups, during push-ups, on KP, in my runs, and during d & c. I did what he said. I relayed that the loss of a ministry to the unborn in pro-life activism weighed heavily on my mind.

I came out of that confessional to be met by a sea of green in the sanctuary. In his homily he invited a volunteer from the laity to relay to the rest what day it was. The military is a conservative entity and the conservatives are more sympathetic to the pro-life movement.

Nobody volunteered. So I got up to tell them that it was the Anniversary of Roe V. Wade. You could hear a pin drop. This was the second cycle of integrated training where both the men and the women trained together so a sea of, not just masculine, but also feminine faces turned to look at me. Wow did I really just get up and say that? The priest was beaming. I went to Communion and there he had for me two Communion wafers. In a death culture industry such that the Military seems to be (though it in reality is not) he persevered to protect life He was the priest they told me about. This humble and obedient man was the one instrumental in getting that Military Base Planned Parenthood closed down. He never let on even once during confession who or what he was to the pro-life movement.

His example there in that particular place in time was evidence of the sort humility that I would unsuccessfully try to exhibit in my own life. I needed to learn obedience that was why God put me there. Obedience is kind of a watchword in the military, more than in any other other form of service, except for vocations. Military Chaplains, therefore, get a double dose. He most certainly did.

I never knew your name.

Thank you!

– Submitted by a pro-life soldier

Related link

Catholic Chaplain – aftermath of Ft. Hood shootings

Advertisements

Now giants were upon the earth in those days…

Genesis 6:2 – 4 The sons of God seeing the daughters of men, that they were fair, took to themselves wives of all which they chose. And God said: My spirit shall not remain in man for ever, because he is flesh, and his days shall be a hundred and twenty years. Now giants were upon the earth in those days. For after the sons of God went in to the daughters of men, and they brought forth children, these are the mighty men of old, men of renown.

These creatures, through inter-breeding, eventually managed to contaminate the entire human genome, except for NOAH’s family. That’s why Noah (and 7 other humans) got to build the ark and survive.

Genesis 6:9 These are the generations of Noe: Noe (Noah) was a just and perfect man in his generations, he walked with God.

St. Peter tells us that Noah and his family were SAVED by the FLOOD.

1Peter 3:18 – 20 Because Christ also died once for our sins, the just for the unjust: that he might offer us to God, being put to death indeed in the flesh, but enlivened in the spirit, In which also coming he preached to those spirits that were in prison: Which had been some time incredulous, when they waited for the patience of God in the days of Noe, when the ark was a building: wherein a few, that is, eight souls, were saved by water.

These oversize hybrid people showed up again in the Promised Land just in time to battle the Israelites, as they were returning from their sojourn in Egypt. (Remember Moses and the parting of the Red Sea?) Without another flood, they proved difficult to dislodge. Generations later the Israelites were still fighting giants.

God brought the flood to destroy the first influx of these evil beings and here’s what He told the Israelites to do about those they encountered later:

Numbers 33:52 – 55 Destroy all the inhabitants of that land: Beat down their pillars, and break in pieces their statues, and waste all their high places, Cleansing the land, and dwelling in it. For I have given it you for a possession. And you shall divide it among you by lot. To the more you shall give a larger part, and to the fewer a lesser. To every one as the lot shall fall, so shall the inheritance be given. The possession shall be divided by the tribes and the families. But if you will not kill the inhabitants of the land: they that remain, shall be unto you as nails in your eyes, and spears in your sides, and they shall be your adversaries in the land of your habitation.

How evil were these descendants of the nephilim (fallen ones)?

“ … they shall be unto you as nails in your eyes and spears in your sides.”

OUCH!

Read more

 

Living in sin

From Adam’s “fall” to Jesus’ death, all of mankind (except for John the Baptist, and the Blessed Virgin Mary) “lived in sin”.

Today, ignoring the dire consequences, untold millions continue to choose sinful life styles, never stopping to consider how that choice might affect their death style.

One only needs to look around to see that every evil in the world is the result of sin. Despite 21st century advances in science, medicine and technology, sin remains as mankind’s “public enemy number one”.

So that you, through Christ, may truly overcome evil and so doing, overcome the world, here’s the “straight dope” on sin:

Most people would agree that the term, “living in sin” has always referred to heterosexual (male/female) couples living together (and being sexually active with each other) without benefit of the Sacrament of Matrimony.

Homosexual couples that live together (and routinely have sex with each other) are also “living in sin”. But sacramental Matrimony/Marriage can never be any part of the equation, in that case.

Broadening the definition somewhat, anyone guilty of a serious, intentional, unconfessed, unrepented and/or unforgiven offense against God or man is also likely to be “living in sin”.

Read more

Vatican/USCCB ramp up efforts to launch new Roman Missal

WASHINGTON — After a decade of work, the greatest liturgical milestone for American Catholics since the 1970s is right around the corner: The Vatican has approved a new English translation of the Roman Missal, and the U.S. bishops have fixed the roll-out date in the nation’s parishes for the beginning of Advent 2011.

“The use of the third edition of the Roman Missal enters into use in the dioceses of the United States of America as of the First Sunday of Advent, Nov. 27, 2011. From that date forward, no other edition of the Roman Missal may be used in the dioceses of the United States of America,” stated Cardinal Francis George of Chicago, president of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops, in his Aug. 20 letter to the nation’s bishops.

Read more



Honey, if you ever leave me, I’m going with you …

The Scripture says that a man leaves his father and mother and clings to his wife (Gen 2:24).

Now “cling” is a strong word. It means to stick like glue. Notice that a man does this. Boys run around and play the field, but a man looks for a wife and, finding her,  leaves his parents and clings to her. This is what a man does. He works hard to preserve union with his wife. He seeks to understand her needs and to provide, to be affectionate, affirming and encouraging. He confirms her authority over the children and teaches them to respect her.

Too many men today are passive husbands and fathers. But the Scriptures place on the man the first obligation to cling to his wife. When a marriage is in trouble it is usually the wife who calls me. This is already a sign of trouble since the Lord says that clinging is the essential role the man. If there is trouble he should be the first to notice it and to work to restore proper union with his wife.

It is true today that many men have little recourse if a wife simply wants to leave, no-fault divorce is too easy and is hard to fight . But of course the question is what did he do when he first saw trouble, first saw the unity of his marriage threatened.

Read more

“Ask and You Shall Receive.” – But there’s a catch …

And Jesus answered saying to them,

“Have faith in God. Truly I say to you, whoever says to this mountain, be taken up and cast into the sea, and does not doubt in his heart, but believes that what he says is going to happen, it will be granted him. Therefore I say to you, all things for which you pray and ask, believe that you have received them, and they will be granted you.” – Mark 11:22-24

The “Catch”

The virtues of faith, hope and charity are a reflection of the power of God’s grace in our life, and our free will choice to cooperate with that grace … for our own salvation and for the glory of God … all of which are in full agreement with God’s will and his plan.

Should it happen that we ask God for something which is not compatible with his grace, his will, or his plan … then we probably shouldn’t look forward to moving mountains … anytime soon!

Fr. Euteneuer to Return to Diocese

Dear Friends of Life,

Nearly ten years ago I answered the call of the Lord to come to Human Life International and work full-time in pro-life work with the permission of my bishop. I have been utterly privileged to serve this great mission for a decade, and now I am called back to my diocese to continue my priestly service in parish work, which was the original calling of my vocation. A priest is a soldier of Christ and the Church, and obedience is the primary virtue of his state in life, but for my part, my discernment about this decision tells me that this is the right thing for me to do and at the right time. I have great peace about the road that lies ahead and about all that has been accomplished up to this point.

Our international mission remains in good hands with my departure. HLI’s Board of Directors has asked Msgr. Ignacio Barreiro of our Rome office to assume my responsibilities until such a time as a permanent replacement is named. Our tremendously competent staff and generous supporters are looking to the future with great hope despite the many challenges of the death peddlers on a global scale which are only increasing. There is more need of our mission now than ever! HLI’s network of affiliates and associates is more than 100 countries strong, and our international leaders, so often highlighted in our publications, are literally the best in the world! Our dear founder, Fr. Paul Marx would be extremely proud of what we have accomplished in the past decade. I am sure he is smiling on us from where he is now.

I do not have a parish assignment in my diocese as of yet, but I hope to take some time out before I go back into full-time parish work. I expect that some time of rest and renewal will help me to make the transition. It has been 15 years since I last had any significant time for renewal, and after traveling more than 1.1 million miles, authoring two books, visiting 58 countries and making thousands of public appearances, I am ready for a break! I intend to continue to do pro-life work wherever I may be called to serve, and my bishop agrees that this is a vital charism of my priestly life. A true pro-lifer is not oriented to a job so much as to the daily task of fighting the culture of death and building the culture of life!

I ask for your kind prayers as I move forward and for your continued support of HLI and the new leadership that will come soon. I will not be a stranger to HLI’s mission or life but I promise that I will remember each of you every day in the Eucharistic Sacrifice, the font of all unity and LIFE!

Blessings in Christ,

Fr. Tom Signature

Rev. Thomas J. Euteneuer
President, Human Life International