16 May 2008

30 seconds can be a lifetime

How many TV commercials have you seen today?

How about in the last week?

Over the last year?

Over the last 35 years?

The average TV commercial in the United States is still 30 seconds long. Not much at all. Sometimes we barely even notice as they go by.

Now consider this ...

every 23 seconds ...

of every hour ...

of every day ...

of every year ...

for the last 35 years ...

a child has been slaughtered in the United States of America.

And what have I done?

Every half hour sit-com is the equivalent of two high school classrooms empty forever.

And what have I done?

During that hour of American Idle or Survivor or whatever
... the equivalent of every player of every team in the Sweet 16 is lost.

And what have I done?

We rightly mourn the loss of 3,000 souls on 9/11.
And yet more children die every single day
by the will of their very own mothers in their own womb.

And we do nothing.

117,000 Americans died during the Great War (World War I).
About the same number of kids die each and every month.

And yet no parades to honor the dead.

418,000 Americans gave their lives during World War II.
Three times more children die every year.

And we continue to sit and watch TV...

That is nearly 50 million children murdered in one otherwise great country.

God Bless America!
... and please forgive us.

For we know ... and yet do nothing.

So the next time you watch a TV commercial, pray for the poor soul that will never have a chance to watch TV ... or anything else.

05 May 2008

Hexena - The Upside-Down Novena

I dislike the idea of moving "Holy Days of Obligation" (what a horrid term, but that's another topic) to the following Sunday for many reasons. But this week is perhaps the best argument against the practice.

When the Ascension of Our Lord is celebrated on Thursday, the origin of the Novena shines through. It is the 9 days the Apostles gathered in prayer after Our Lord ascended, culminating in the glorious Pentecost.

But now, in many dioceses, the 9 days of prayer have been turned upside down so that only 6 remain. And so we have the "modern" novena (perhaps "lazy novena" is a better term). I suppose "hexena" is an even better term.

Anyway, its just one more example of how seemingly minor liturgical fluidity is subtly obliterating our great Catholic heritage.

The truly sad part is that most don't even realize the treasures we are abandoning.