Archive for December, 2013

December 31, 2013 – Fr. Peter Stryker

// December 31st, 2013 // No Comments » // Quest for a Culture of Life in America

Fr Peter Stryker is a native of Cincinnati. After a stint providing hospitality to Westin Hotel guests, he followed God’s call to priesthood with the Fathers of Mercy and now provides hospitality to pilgrims visiting Our Lady of Good Help Shrine near Green Bay Wisconsin. For over 150 years people have come to this site where the Blessed Mother appeared to Adele Brise , asking her to teach the catechism to children of French and Belgium descent. Adele succeeded in raising the funds to build a school, convent and chapel at the apparition site, which has become a place of physical and spiritual healing.

It was on October 9, 1859, that the Queen of Heaven appeared to Adele Brise in Champion (Robinsonville), Wisconsin.The apparitions to “Sister” Adele took place 20 months after Mary appeared in Lourdes France to St Bernadette.

When Adele asked the apparition, “In God’s name, who are you and what do you want of me?”, the lady in white replied,
“I am the Queen of Heaven, who prays for the conversion of sinners, and I wish you to do the same. You received Holy Communion this morning, and that is well. But you must do more. Make a general confession, and offer Communion for the conversion of sinners. If they do not convert and do penance, my Son will be obliged to punish them.”

The Blessed Mother went on to say, “Gather the children in this wild country and teach them what they should know for salvation.” Adele replied, “But how shall I teach them who know so little myself?” Mary replied, “Teach them their catechism, how to sign themselves with the sign of the Cross, and how to approach the sacraments; that is what I wish you to do. Go and fear nothing. I will help you.”

On December 8, 2010, the feast day of the Immaculate Conception, Diocese of Green Bay Bishop David Ricken gave official Church approval of the Marian apparitions that occurred in the month of October at Robinsonville, now known as Champion, Wisconsin. The Bishop stated, “I declare with moral certainty and in accord with the norms of the Church that the events, apparitions and locutions given to Adele Brise in October of 1859 do exhibit the substance of supernatural character, and I do hereby approve these apparitions as worthy of belief (although not obligatory) by the Christian faithful.”

This declaration makes the Shrine of Our Lady of Good Help at Champion the first and only Marian shrine in the United States that is on the site of an approved apparition of the Blessed Virgin Mary.

December 10, 2013 – Mary Eberstadt

// December 10th, 2013 // No Comments » // Quest for a Culture of Life in America

The parallel declines of the family and the Christian Religion in the West (Europe and North America) has long fascinated academicians and sociologists. The debate has typically been over whether family decline caused religion decline, or religion’s decline caused family decline. In How the West Really Lost God, Mary Eberstadt makes the case for religion and family being so intertwined that neither can change without a consequent change in the other.

This influence of family on religion, Mary calls the “Family Factor”–the active effect that family participation has on religious belief and practice.

The American Catholic Church has certainly been in decline for several decades as manifested by closed schools and parishes, fewer vocations to priesthood and religious life, and a mere 25% of Catholics attending weekend Mass.
Family decline is equally evident in the 50% divorce rate, 40% out-of-wedlock birth rate, push for same-sex “marriage”, and the continuing abortion of one out of every four pregnancies. Can Mary convince us that these facts are intertwined?

What does the future hold for the institutions of family (marriage and children), and Church? Mary offers two possibilities–one pessimistic, another optimistic? What do you think? More Churches closing, even smaller families, or a rebirth, a new evangelization, and stable families?

December 03, 2013 – Katie Short

// December 3rd, 2013 // No Comments » // Quest for a Culture of Life in America

That is the title of a recent symposium at Biola University in California, and it is our topic of the day on “The Quest for a Culture of Life in America”. I had not heard of “stealth” euthanasia until Katie Short alerted me to this event. Katie is a wife, mother, and staff attorney with Life Legal Defense Foundation in California. She participated in this symposium; she will be our Guest today.

Stealth–not disclosing one’s true ideology, affiliations, or positions–euthanasia is the intentional killing of vulnerable humans by covert means while projecting an image of loving care. It can happen in home, hospital, or hospice. The killer/s may be family members, medical personnel, or other “care” providers. The hospice industry is a mixture of truly compassionate and ethical care providers and rogue organizations/individuals whose primary focus is on money. Why is “hospice” one of the fastest growing industries in America?

This is too huge a topic to be covered in 50 minutes, but today we can open the subject and provide some guidance to those who are entrusted with the care of a loved one.