Sunday, May 27, 2007


Yesterday I attended my first Ordination Mass. Eight seminarians from the Archdioces of Atlanta were ordained to the transitional diaconate. Not only does that mean they are now Deacons, but it is also a fancy way of saying, God willing, they will be priests next year.

Everytime I see Archbishop Gregory I am more impressed. His homily was on the role of a Deacon and he stressed that their first role is to take care of the poor. He addressed them as his children and he their father. It was just wonderful to see this successor to the Apostles shepherding his flock.

Two of the newly ordained (shown below) come from our parish Saint Brigid.

Reverend Mr. Jim Flanagan.

Reverend Mr. Neil Dhabliwala.

Here are all eight of the newly ordained.

Congratulations to all eight. May God bless and protect them as they move towards ordination to the priesthood. Please keep them all in your prayers and continue to pray for more men to answer God's call.

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Thursday, May 24, 2007

Catholic Conversions

James Swan explains what Catholics really mean when they give the reasons why they became Catholic.

I will not interact with the whole essay here, but his basic point is that those who leave their Protestant communities, to enter the Catholic Church, do not spend enough (or any) time talking about a conversion to Christ. They focus on a conversion to "an infallible church," and their "conversion stories are about what they did...what...they achieved."

Giving Mr. Swan the benefit of the doubt I would say this is a case of a Calvinist talking about Catholics in decidely non-Catholic language. I mean what person who is becoming Catholic does not believe that the Church is the Body of Christ. Not in some invisible, we can not really know the Church, kind of way. In the way that Jesus confronts Saul about persecuting the Church. "Saul, Saul, why do you persecute me?" What person who believed this would possibly think that he is not being converted more towards his Lord by entering his Lord's Church?

Mr. Swan says that these stories "are about what wisdom and glory" the converts have achieved. Even if we grant that his observation is correct, it just means that the convert has not been converted enough. This person is not boasting about themselves because they are Catholic, but because they are not Catholic enough. However, having read a lot of these stories myself I do not think it is safe to assume Mr. Swan has gotten this correct. Let us look at his evidence.

Since there is only one story quoted, you would assume that it shows a clear example of Mr. Swan's thesis. Reading the example I am afraid I find the opposite - the convert clearly speaks of the gifts that he has been given, not what he has done for himself. Since the example quoted in no way (that I can see) supports his thesis, I am lost as to the reason why he uses it or why no other examples are given.

If Mr. Swan does not enjoy these stories he is certainly free not to read them. If he thinks Catholics are a bunch of glory seeking, self-lovers that do not realize what fools they are for receiving "the Lordship of an alleged infallible church magisterium as the ultimate rule over their lives," then he will be included in my prayers. He is, of course, free to think these things, but they really do not further his thesis in any fashion. In fact, they seem to be stated in the hopes that whoever reads them will just accept them blindly as truth and continue on to agree with his conclusion.

Mr. Swan spends a lot of time talking about what a true conversion to Christ entails. I applaud him for that and most of the things he says should be evident in anyone's life who claims Christ as Lord. It just is not plain to me (granted I am not the brightest bulb) why he is railing against something that all seems to be in his head.

Those who say Catholic conversions are about trusting a "human" institution show their lack of trust in Jesus when he says, "I will build my Church, and the gates of Hades shall not prevail against it." and "...behold, I am with you always, to the close of the age." A Protestant who enters the Catholic Church already trusted his Lord. The new Catholic's gift of faith has only grown to trust that Jesus will always protect his Bride.

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Thursday, May 03, 2007

So All May Eat

Here's a really cool idea how to serve the poor and also respecting their diginity as persons made in the image and likeness of God. The owners decided to open a cafe where the patrons only pay what they can afford. Check out their website for more information.
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Tuesday, May 01, 2007


Hello random people who I may, or may not, know...

It has come to my attention that I haven't posted in quite some time, or maybe it was only that one time... either way.

So in order to make this blog seem cool and exciting (not just one or the other) I will now wow you with my photo taking skills. On your right you will see our Godson (Luke) as seen in his natural habitat. (He had to stalk that cake for quite some time before it finally submitted.)

On your left is our Goddaughter (Mary Clare) hanging out at her older brother's football game. Obviously these are two of the most adorable kids on the planet!! Oh - but I haven't even gotten to our niece and nephews yet!

In the interim though, here's a lovely picture of my handsome man...

...yes that's right. Some women go for tree huggers, I go for tree biters. Don't knock it until after you have eaten your first tree. Unfortunately due to poison ivy Todd had to give up gnawing on random foilage. (I'll spare you all the poison ivy pictures.)

More pictures coming soon...

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Returning to Georgia

It's official. We are moving back to Georgia. We have our move back date (5/19), the truck rented (Penske), and Beth gets to keep her job (woohoo!). Unfortunately, we don't know where we are going to live yet...I figure we will work that out relatively quickly.

As for why we are moving and what is going on up here in Virginia, Beth's family has decided to place her Grandaddy in a assisted living facility. Please keep him and the family in your prayers.

Meanwhile, Michelle (Beth's cousin) is about 10 months pregnant and ready to pop any minute now. It's a boy (Joshua) and he should be arriving any day.

Hopefully we will see you soon...
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