“Bad” Catholic admits: Being The Arbiter of All Truth is exhausting.

Ever since I became Catholic in 2009, I’ve tried to bend Catholicism to meet my Own Ideas About What Catholicism Should Be. Let me be brief: this journey has ended in disaster.

For one thing, it’s exhausting. For another thing, it was atheistic. At least, behaviorally.

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A Catholic convert theologian writes about faith, love, death, God and “other stuff”

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My first glimpse of God was the love which my parents shared with one another. It was a life-giving love centered upon a common faith that despite all the challenges of living out a common life together, they could entrust themselves to one another and find a path to their salvation through one another.

The true character of this love was revealed most poignantly to me when my mother was on her deathbed, emaciated and disfigured by the effects of aggressive cancer treatment. As the options dwindled, my father became more and more desperate, trying every possible medical and spiritual avenue to avoid losing my mom.

One afternoon, as he was venting his frustrations to God before a simple wooden crucifix, he heard God interrupt his stream of thoughts almost as if he were speaking audibly: “Do you trust me?” was the simple question posed to him.

Later, closer to the time of her death, my dad was able to look down at my mother’s unconscious face, and say “I have never loved your mother more than I do right now.” It is an inestimable blessing to be able to root one’s analogical appeal to God as “Father” in that kind of experience.

Hospitality and community were also key parts of my religious formation.

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Heart rending testimony of a former abortion clinic worker who left her job and has since become a Christian.

My official title at the mill was “health worker.” I did various duties-lab work, leading groups (deceiving women about their abortions), “advocating” (deceiving women during their abortions), and assisting the abortionist, which included helping during the abortion and checking to make sure all the parts of the baby were there in the collection jar afterwards. I will never forget, in the second-trimester abortions, holding those little feet up to a chart on the wall to make sure of the age of the baby.

Just like everyone else employed there I laughed at the pro-lifers outside the mill and hardened my heart against the truth. If I thought about what was really happening, it became overwhelming. So, I treated the whole issue as a joke-but somewhere along the line God started working on my heart. I started to read literature left by the pro-lifers, and pro-life books. I began to see what I was doing in a whole new light. I saw these babies for what they were-human beings. It was very hard for my heart and head to accept because I had been leaving both my heart and head at home for so long to work there.

I began looking towards God and sometimes visiting church and reading the Bible. I know that the only thing keeping me from accepting Christ into my life was the fact that I was involved in murder-the murder of those made in His image. After working there eight months, I could no longer resist God-He had awakened me to the ugliness of abortion. I knew that in every abortion a living human being is killed, and I believe that a part of the mother is killed too. In May of 1991 I left the mill and believed that I had shut the door on my abortion experience.

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Remembering the Legacy of Chuck Colson (1931-2012)

Just as Jesus wept at the death of his friend Lazarus, we who are our Lord’s disciples weep at the death of Chuck Colson, our beloved friend and brother in Christ, who passed away this afternoon.

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Eternal rest grant unto him, O Lord, and let perpetual light shine upon him. May his soul and all the souls of the faithful departed, through the mercy of God, rest in peace. Amen

Chuck Colson Reflects On His Conversion to Christianity

“Now, you were Jewish, then Protestant and now you are a Catholic, you’re not going anywhere from here?!”

I handed him my card which announced “Dr. Paul Chaim Benedicta Schenck” and said, “Your Excellency, I have a Greek name, a Hebrew name and a Latin name, I cannot add any more names.”

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Love hurts: Brilliant converted Israeli Jew first becomes Catholic priest, now a high Vatican official.

Jaeger’s appointment to the Holy See’s highest judicial body – comprising 20 auditors hand-picked by the pope and headed by Dean of the Rota Antoni Stankiewicz – is considered a personal sign of appreciation by the pope for Jaeger’s years as legal adviser to the delegation that negotiated the Vatican’s Fundamental Agreement with Israel. This pact, signed in 1993, enabled the establishment of diplomatic relations between the parties the following year.

Jaeger, 56, was born in Tel Aviv to Gershon, a legendary history teacher at the Ironi A High School, and Dvora, who served as Brazil’s deputy consul in Israel.

“He was a genius, physically large, an intellectual at a young age,” Stanger said. “He spoke unusually maturely for his age. And children abused and hurt him.”

As a teenager, Stanger continued, “Jaeger disappeared for six years.” When he returned, at 22, he met Stanger and told him, “You know, I’m now in the church.”

Link

Profound insights into the faith from a Presbyterian to Catholic convert and scholar.

By the time I finished my Ph.D., I had completely revised my understanding of the Catholic Church. I saw that her sacramental doctrine, her view of salvation, her veneration of Mary and the saints, and her claims to authority were all grounded in Scripture, in the oldest traditions, and in the plain teaching of Christ and the apostles. I also realized that Protestantism was a confused mass of inconsistencies and tortured logic. Not only was Protestant doctrine untrue, but it bred contention, and could not even remain unchanged. The more I studied, the more I realized that my evangelical heritage had moved far not only from ancient Christianity, but even from the teaching of her own Protestant founders.

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Submitted by Robert K.

Recent Catholic convert and Republican strategist Mary Matalin (wife of Democratic loud mouth, James Carville) speaks

The Republican strategist, editor and talk show host (and wife of Democratic loud mouth, James Carville) spoke to the Catholic Media Convention last weekend. At one point, she mentioned that she was raised Methodist, but joined the Catholic Church this past Easter, through RCIA.

From Catholics News Service, via the Catholic Spirit:

She shared her observations on the current political climate in the country as it heads toward midterm elections.

A former adviser to President George W. Bush and Vice President Dick Cheney, Matalin is editor-in-chief of Threshold Editions, an imprint of Simon & Schuster. She also is a CNN contributor and co-hosts a radio show.

She filled in for her husband, Democratic strategist James Carville, who was scheduled to speak but had a last-minute conflict. The couple and their two daughters live in New Orleans.

Matalin was introduced by Father John Carville, retired vicar general of the Diocese of Baton Rouge and her husband’s cousin.

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One of the neatest things about being Catholic

One of the neatest things about being Catholic is that I can go to Mass anywhere in the world and feel comfortable. I never felt that way beforehand. Growing up as a non-denominational Christian, we visited other churches rarely and when we did, it felt weird.

As a result, when on vacation we just skipped church. We didn’t know anyone, and we really weren’t missing anything except a sermon and who knew if that was going to be any good? When visiting relatives, if it happened to be a Sunday, we would sometimes attend with them, so there was a modicum of safety from being singled out as potential new members. But if we didn’t know anyone? Nope. What was the point? We were just passing through and the fellowship of our local church would be absent and we would be like strangers and stick out like sore thumbs.

Now that I’m a Catholic, I love visiting other parishes! And I know that the fellowship of our home parish community is not the big draw anyway. The big draw is Christ and His Presence in the Eucharist. We don’t need to know anyone locally because the most important Person there knows us backwards and forwards.

Read the article by Frank Weathers

Musings of an Episcopal Convert to Catholicism

Katherine Jefferts Schorri, leader of the Episcopal Church in America, has called the concept of personal salvation a “western heresy.” Staying in such an ecclesial body is outside my comfort zone.

So, it was worth living through a little bad taste. Even at its tackiest, the Catholic Church has not rejected the Founder. It’s good I found a new home, because my old one no longer exists. It brings me great joy that Pope Benedict XVI is welcoming Anglicans into the Church. Think of it as outreach to the homeless.

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Catholic convert who was world’s oldest student passes away

Nairobi, Kenya, Aug 16, 2009 / 07:08 am (CNA).- The Kenyan man named by the Guinness Book of World Records as the world’s oldest pupil, who enrolled in classes to learn to read the Bible and converted to Catholicism in the final years of his life, died in Nairobi on Friday morning at the age of 81.

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Obama and Blair. Messianism reinterpreted

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Obama and Blair. Messianism reinterpreted

by Michel Schooyans

The election of Barack Obama as president of the United States has raised many expectations all over the world. In the United States, the voters chose a young, mixed race, brilliant president. He is expected to keep his promise of correcting the errors of the president who preceded him. Some excessive terms have even been used, for example the assertion that the time has come to “rebuild” the United States, or to reorganize the international order. This shows the influence of Saul D. Alinsky (1909-1972), one of the intellectual guides of the new president and Hillary Clinton. There has been no lack of zeal among the dynamic new president’s admirers, who demonized the beleaguered president George W. Bush, calling for the dismantling of the politics that he developed as soon as possible. Now the Bush administration, although it did have its merits, was characterized by failures that have been acknowledged, even by the president’s inner circle. Nonetheless, on one essential and fundamental point, President Bush promoted a policy worthy of respect and continuity: he offered both unborn children and medical personnel legal protection, certainly less than sufficient but still effective.

The voters who put Barack Obama into the presidency did not perceive the weakness and ambiguity of the statements made by their candidate concerning this decisive point. Moreover, once elected, one of President Obama’s first actions was to revoke President Bush’s measures to protect the unborn child’s right to life.

President Obama is thus reintroducing the right to discriminate, to “set aside” some human beings. With him, the right of every human person to life and liberty is no longer recognized, much less protected. As a result, President Obama disputes the reasoning invoked by his fellow African-Americans when they demanded, rightly, the recognition of the right of all to the same dignity, to equality and freedom. In its prenatal version, racism has been restored in the United States.

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Quote: “Bush More Catholic Than Kennedy”

White House photo by Chris Greenberg

Here’s an article that definitely mixes politics and religion, and offers a number of very interesting possibilities.

Is President Bush thinking about following Tony Blair’s lead, and becoming Catholic?

He wouldn’t be the first member of the family to do so. Jeb Bush became Catholic some time ago.

Click here to read the story, courtesy of the Washington Post