August 22, 2014

With the beheading of James Foley and the increasing reports of his Catholic faith, the word “martyr” is becoming more popular. Some would caution that we shouldn’t use the word too lightly. I agree. At the same time, I also think martyrdom is more common than we realize. Here are 16 points (5+6+5) and few more for good measure. It’s been happening for a long time. Christians (and others) are being killed for their faith, for what they believe and… Read more

August 21, 2014

When a movie gives me perspective on where I’m at here and now in my life, I give it a thumbs up. In all honesty the new movie When The Game Stands Tall (in theaters tomorrow) surprised me in this regard. Let’s face it. I’m the kind of person who, with the exception of this year’s Super Bowl, watches the biggest football game of the year for…the commercials and the party. (This year was different since the Seattle Seahawks were… Read more

August 18, 2014

The BBC has this great piece about Kurdish fighters stopping to rescue this young disabled child who’d been abandoned in the desert for approximately two days. You know you’re dealing with a real soldier when he or she stops to help a child. (Sorry, but the BBC video doesn’t appear to have an embed option.) The Kurds seem to be amazing heroes. I never even knew they existed until St. John Paul II mentioned them in the Sunday Angelus -… Read more

August 16, 2014

The US Conference of Catholic Bishops has asked that today, Sunday, August 17, be marked as a day of special prayer for peace in Iraq. It’s the least we can do for all those suffering religious persecution – Yazidis, Christians, and Muslims – in Iraq. The above video comes from an article in The Daily Mail that appears to be legit. More reality TV that we should be watching. The article details the treatment of women captured by the Islamic… Read more

August 15, 2014

I’ve held off writing anything on Robin Williams as I don’t know much about him except that I’m grateful for all the times he made me laugh and his suicide suggests his ability to make us laugh came from a place of deep, deep suffering. But I just read Ben Stein’s piece and hope you will, too. Yes, he has some strong opinions about psychoactive anti-depressant drugs. You can take that up with him. I’m no expert in that area…. Read more

August 13, 2014

  CNN has excellent footage of delivering food to the Yezidis in Iraq and rescuing some of them. People need to see this footage. This is how bad it it is for Yezidis and Christians. H/T The Daily Signal which has an excellent photo essay on this topic. Here’s a teaser. Do visit TDS for the whole series. These are real people. This is real suffering. This is religious persecution. The Vatican, through the Council for Interreligious Dialogue issued a… Read more

August 7, 2014

Iraq. It’s not looking good. Earlier today, I posted: “Iraq. Genocide. ‘Never Again’ Should Cue Something More Than A James Bond Movie.” At that point, the WSJ was reporting that the US Military might start to get involved, particularly with dropping supplies to the Christians and other religious minorities who are being forced out of their homes as the Islamic State advances. Pope Francis made an urgent appeal today. Some bullet points – The attacks are being waged upon “defenseless… Read more

August 7, 2014

The Wall Street Journal reports today that the U.S. military is considering airstrikes and emergency relief supplies to the religious minorities in Iraq who are being forced out by the Islamic State (aka ISIS). Finally. Patheos bloggers have been covering the story consistently. I wrote about it early on, including an email from a Dominican priest who was near Mosul and described the activities of then ISIS. The situation in Iraq is very, very bad. Read Deacon Greg’s piece describing… Read more

August 4, 2014

The Boston Globe’s Inés San Martín has a summary piece of Pope Francis’ involvement in the various Middle East conflicts. She quotes Pope Francis: “I think especially about the kids, who have been robbed of a hope for a better life, a future: kids being killed, wounded, mutilated and orphaned. Kids who as toys have the debris of war, who cannot smile anymore.” Reminds me of my brother’s description of the average 5-year-old he would see in Kabul, Afghanistan in… Read more

August 4, 2014

The other day, I wrote about a significant milestone at Heartbeat International’s Option Line, the world’s first and largest pregnancy help call center. Option Line has been open nonstop for 100,000 hours since it’s inception in 2003. Over 2 million people, mostly women, have reached out to Option Line for help. Option Line connects callers to local resources for pregnant girls and women who might otherwise feel as if they have no choice but abortion. A few days later, the… Read more

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