Archive for the ‘Signs of hope’ category

Shhh Don’t Tell The ACLU

July 5, 2010


Have you ever noticed on TV or at military funerals that the honor guard pays meticulous attention to correctly folding the American flag 13 times? I’ve known how the 21 gun salute was determined (adding the individual digits of 1776), but only recently learned why the flag was folded 13 times when it is lowered or when it is folded and handed to the widow at the burial of a veteran.


The first fold of our flag is a symbol of life.

The second fold is a symbol of our belief in eternal life. 

The third fold is made in honor and remembrance of the veterans departing our ranks who gave a portion of their lives for the defense of our country to attain peace throughout the world.

The fourth fold represents our weaker nature, for as American citizens trusting in God, it is to Him we turn in times of peace as well as in time of war for His divine guidance.

The fifth fold is a tribute to our country, for in the words of Stephen Decatur, “Our Country, in dealing with other countries, may she always be right; but it is still our country, right or wrong.”

The sixth fold is for where our hearts lie. It is with our heart that we pledge allegiance to the flag of the United States Of America, and to the Republic for which it stands, one Nation under God, indivisible, with Liberty and Justice for all.

The seventh fold is a tribute to our Armed Forces, for it is through the Armed Forces that we protect our country and our flag against all her enemies, whether they be found within or without the boundaries of our republic.

The eighth fold is a tribute to the one who entered into the valley of the shadow of death, that we might see the light of day, and to honor mother, for whom it flies on Mother’s Day.

The ninth fold is a tribute to womanhood; for it has been through their faith, their love, loyalty and devotion that the character of the men and women who have made this country great has been molded.

The tenth fold is a tribute to the father, for he, too, has given his sons and daughters for the defense of our country since they were first born.

The eleventh fold, in the eyes of a Hebrew citizen represents the lower portion of the seal of King David and King Solomon, and glorifies in their eyes, the God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob.

The twelfth fold, in the eyes of a Christian citizen, represents an emblem of eternity and glorifies, in their eyes, God the Father, the Son, and Holy Spirit.

When the flag is completely folded, the stars are uppermost reminding us of our nation’s motto, “In God We Trust”. After the flag is completely folded and tucked in, it takes on the appearance of a cocked hat, ever reminding us of the soldiers who served under General George Washington, and the sailors and marines who served under Captain John Paul Jones, who were followed by their comrades and shipmates in the Armed Forces of the United States, preserving for us the rights, privileges, and freedoms we enjoy today. There are some traditions and ways of doing things which have deep meaning. You will see many flags folded in the coming weeks, and now you will know why.


Better than winning the lottery!

April 7, 2010

As I surfed the Catholic web today, I found some descriptions about the Archbishop-designate of Los Angeles very intriguing.  Abp Jose Gomez, currently the Archbishop of San Antonio, was described on Rocco’s blog as “the lone American bishop ever to be a full member of Opus Dei,” and was quoted by Tim Drake as saying “In the Archdiocese of San Antonio we started a new marriage preparation program based on the Theology of the Body.”  Tim also mentioned the Abp’s 2007 pastoral letter entitled “The Tender Mercy of Our God.”  Since we’re in the middle of the Novena to Divine Mercy, that seemed too coincidental to pass up, so I searched it out and began reading.

Wow!!!  What an awesome letter!  The very first paragraph uses the phrase “called to holiness and mission.”  The second paragraph is in-your-face Trinitarian.  So, already, by the third paragraph, I am deeply appreciating Abp Gomez’s teaching style.  After reading the sixth paragraph (still on the first page [of the pdf]), I’m addicted.  And it continued.  Nothing new, mind you.  What was so striking to me was the JP2-esque pastoral clarity with which he presented the Truth.  Christocentric throughout.  Challenging us to “deepening a personal relationship with [Jesus] in order to be his follower and his friend.”

More specifically relevant to Catholic Men’s Fellowships was this role model to whom he directed us:

“Let us remind our culture of people like Blessed Luis Magaña Servin, one of our newest American blesseds, a devoted husband and father, martyred in Mexico in 1928. Facing a firing squad, he was able to speak words of forgiveness to the soldiers about to execute him: ‘I pardon you and I promise you that on arriving in the presence of God you are the first ones I will intercede for. Viva Cristo Rey! Viva Santa María de Guadalupe!’”

All in all, a tremendous read in this ‘mercy week,’ and a great resource for teaching about the Sacrament of Penance.


March 28, 2010

…from the March 2oth Catholic Men’s Prayer Breakfast at Harvey’s Lake:

Deacon Tom Cesarini leads Morning Prayer

Ted Mike provides music

Men at prayer #1

Men at prayer #2

Glenn encourages the men

Frank Yanik & Dave Parmalee work the kitchen

Fr Daniel Toomey teaches after breakfast

Fr Daniel Toomey & Deacon Tom Cesarini

Holy Bible — Chuck Norris Edition

January 13, 2010

A good friend of mine recently showed me the cross he wears around his neck.  It’s pretty neat, made of bent iron nails wrapped in wire, but the wire was painted red white and blue.  There’s a number of ways you could interpret that, but he is very sincere and respectful.

In light of that there was a recent ‘ad’ for a new version of the Bible that I came across.  With the myriad of protestant bible editions out there, I thought this made for a humorous start to the day:

Fruit of the New Evangelization

November 9, 2009

This post at the Intentional Disciples blog left me astounded, astonished, absolutely stupefyed, open-mouthed-in-amazement.  Please…read the post.  Then…you MUST watch the video (at the bottom of the post).

The turnaround.  The numbers.  The youth.  The joy.  The unabashed love for Jesus.  And it’s not just a weekend youth conference.  Imagine an entire Church aflame like that, committed to daily living the life in the Spirit!

I’m going to try to watch that video at least once every week for the rest of my life!

Tired of depressing posts?

October 8, 2009


Here is a MARVELOUS blog.  Bookmark it now.  The Blog, “Why I am a Catholic” was writtten because a friend and fellow convert asked, out of the blue one day, “So Webster, Why Catholicism?”  I was at a loss.  I couldn’t say.  So I started this blog.  Each post is a partial answer.”

I love the entry “For his love endures forever.”

Anti-Catholicism not the only game in town:

September 23, 2009

In Britain, the founder of the (wait for it…) Jedi religion (inspired by the Star Wars films) has accused Tesco supermarkets of religious discrimination. The London Guardianreported last Friday that Daniel Jones was ordered by staff at a Tesco store in north Wales to remove his hood while in the store. Jones, also known by his Jedi name Morda Hehol, said his religion requires him to wear the hood while in public. He is considering legal action against Tesco. Tesco though was undaunted in enforcing its rules, saying: “Obi-Wan Kenobi, Yoda and Luke Skywalker all appeared hoodless without ever going over to the Dark Side and we are only aware of the Emperor as one who never removed his hood. If Jedi walk around our stores with their hoods on, they’ll miss lots of special offers.”