Fathering With Intentionality: The Importance of Creating a Family Culture.

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My family preferred “Aqua-Culture”

Have you ever met one of those families that just seem to have it all together? Maybe you knew such a family growing up and loved hanging out over at their house – there was such a great atmosphere there that you kind of felt like you were coming home whenever you stopped over.

The parents were happy. The kids were all well-adjusted and generally did the right thing. Everyone in the family seemed to genuinely love, respect, and care about each other. They all truly enjoyed each other’s company and had a blast doing things together.

Sure, they had problems and struggles like any other family, but they supported each other and rallied together to take care of whatever they were going through. Maybe you joked about them being so good it was creepy – perhaps they were perfect aliens from another planet — but you envied them nonetheless.

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Editor’s note: The above photo is a self-portrait I took of my family while we were on a shipwreck diving trip beneath the chilly but clear waters of Lake Superior. It’s actually a composite of two different photos, shot using a wide-angle lens with good, old-fashioned “film”.

To avoid obscuring anyone with my exhaust bubbles it was necessary for me to break the cardinal rule of SCUBA diving, which is, “Never hold your breath.”

Warning: Don’t try this at home!

Here’s another wreck diving pic, shot at a different location, about 60 feet below the surface of Lake Michigan:

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It comes down to one word: R-E-S-P-E-C-T.

By Kyle-Anne Shiver

…It comes down to one word: R-E-S-P-E-C-T.

Respect for God, our Creator. That’s the fountain of American wisdom from which all else flows.

From respect for God, our Creator, comes respect for each individual that God has made. The foundational principle of American government is that human souls come in only one color, in one type, and at one value. In God’s sight, we are all created equal. And since our very founding, good Americans of all stripes have worked to further this principle.

As if to highlight this fundamental loss of respect for our Creator as the source of citizens’ unalienable rights, our big-government elitist in chief feels perfectly free to simply remove God from the American equal-rights paradigm, as he did when speaking to the Hispanic Caucus last month.

From respect for each individual flows the idea that liberty is a fundamental — unalienable by government — human right. Just as God has given free will to each person, in perfectly equitable manner, respecting man’s ability to choose his own path, so a government made in the image of God’s plan must permit the freedom to succeed or to fail, to prosper or to flounder, and to account for his own life when he faces God at the end of his earthly journey.

If the majority of American citizens want to change our Constitution, if they wish to banish the word “Creator” from our public display of the Declaration of Independence, they have legal ways in which to do this. The states can call a Constitutional Convention to take such steps democratically. Or our elected representatives can propose legal amendments to our Constitution which transform America into a socialist democracy. This is respect for the people’s will.

But Democrats have decided to transform America from the top-down position of tyrants, boldly challenging the people to resist. Our founders were brilliant men who put into our Constitution the legal means to transform this country by purely democratic means. But Barack Obama is not legally empowered to make America into what he thinks it ought to be.

What we have in America today isn’t just a feckless bunch of big spenders running our economy off a cliff. We have a cadre of power-mad folks who have no respect for the rule of law or the Constitution they are sworn to protect.

Respect for the will of the people is the very soul of democracy. Without it, liberty is nothing but a sham.

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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.

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Is it true that the late Pope John Paul II once publicly kissed the Koran?


Q: Is it true that the late Pope John Paul II once publicly kissed the Koran (Muslim Holy Book)? What can we infer from this?

A: Yes he did, as the above photo shows. As for inferring the pope’s intentions or motives, this 1985 address to a group of Muslim Moroccan youth provides a good idea of the pope’s position on the Islamic faith:

“Christians and Muslims, we have many things in common, as believers and as human beings. We live in the same world, marked by many signs of hope, but also by multiple signs of anguish. For us, Abraham is a very model of faith in God, of submission to his will and of confidence in his goodness. We believe in the same God, the one God, the living God, the God who created the world and brings his creatures to their perfection.

It is therefore towards this God that my thought goes and that my heart rises: it is of God himself that, above all, I wish to speak with you; of him, because it is in him that we believe, you Muslims and we Catholics. I wish also to speak with you about human values, which have their basis in God, these values which concern the blossoming of our person, as also that of our families and our societies, as well as that of the international community. The mystery of God, is it not the highest reality from which depends the very meaning which man gives to his life? And is it not the first problem that presents itself to a young person, when he reflects upon the mystery of his own existence and on the values which he intends to choose in order to build his growing personality?”

Read the full text from the Vatican website

This approach makes a lot of sense, based on the official Catholic Church teaching regarding Islam (and other, non-Christian faiths.) From the Catechism:

The Church and non-Christians

839 “Those who have not yet received the Gospel are related to the People of God in various ways.”325

The relationship of the Church with the Jewish People. When she delves into her own mystery, the Church, the People of God in the New Covenant, discovers her link with the Jewish People,326 “the first to hear the Word of God.”327 The Jewish faith, unlike other non-Christian religions, is already a response to God’s revelation in the Old Covenant. To the Jews “belong the sonship, the glory, the covenants, the giving of the law, the worship, and the promises; to them belong the patriarchs, and of their race, according to the flesh, is the Christ”,328 “for the gifts and the call of God are irrevocable.”329

840 And when one considers the future, God’s People of the Old Covenant and the new People of God tend towards similar goals: expectation of the coming (or the return) of the Messiah. But one awaits the return of the Messiah who died and rose from the dead and is recognized as Lord and Son of God; the other awaits the coming of a Messiah, whose features remain hidden till the end of time; and the latter waiting is accompanied by the drama of not knowing or of misunderstanding Christ Jesus.

841 The Church’s relationship with the Muslims. “The plan of salvation also includes those who acknowledge the Creator, in the first place amongst whom are the Muslims; these profess to hold the faith of Abraham, and together with us they adore the one, merciful God, mankind’s judge on the last day.”330

842 The Church’s bond with non-Christian religions is in the first place the common origin and end of the human race:

All nations form but one community. This is so because all stem from the one stock which God created to people the entire earth, and also because all share a common destiny, namely God. His providence, evident goodness, and saving designs extend to all against the day when the elect are gathered together in the holy city. . .331

843 The Catholic Church recognizes in other religions that search, among shadows and images, for the God who is unknown yet near since he gives life and breath and all things and wants all men to be saved. Thus, the Church considers all goodness and truth found in these religions as “a preparation for the Gospel and given by him who enlightens all men that they may at length have life.”332

844 In their religious behavior, however, men also display the limits and errors that disfigure the image of God in them:

Very often, deceived by the Evil One, men have become vain in their reasonings, and have exchanged the truth of God for a lie, and served the creature rather than the Creator. Or else, living and dying in this world without God, they are exposed to ultimate despair.333

845 To reunite all his children, scattered and led astray by sin, the Father willed to call the whole of humanity together into his Son’s Church. The Church is the place where humanity must rediscover its unity and salvation. The Church is “the world reconciled.” She is that bark which “in the full sail of the Lord’s cross, by the breath of the Holy Spirit, navigates safely in this world.” According to another image dear to the Church Fathers, she is prefigured by Noah’s ark, which alone saves from the flood.334

Explanation of Catholic teachings about homosexuality

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Psycho-biological research on homosexuality leads to the conclusion that it is a vice, namely a disorderedbehavior, fruit of undergone or freely chosen disordered habits. From a sociopolitical point of view, the attitude towards homosexual persons must be full of respect, compassion and thoughtfulness, while – on the contrary – the homosexual vice can’t be and must not be protected or promoted as a value. It can’t be and must not be equalized with the normal and ordered sexual behavior, originating family and the possibility of adopting children. Society must provide every support to people with homosexual tendencies, but still willing to free themselves from the vice. A progressive itinerary of liberation from vice is the only realistic and true way to preserve the freedom and the dignity of persons with homosexual tendencies. In corroboration of the truth of this statement, there are social phenomena such as the growth of the “ex-gay” international movement, made of homosexuals and ex-homosexuals who refuse to resign to their disorderedtendencies. In the U.S.A., the movement originated associations like Exodus International and Courage: members help one another to promote an improvement and a change in life to free themselves from the vice of homosexuality.

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