A Big Hand to Our Parish

October 30, 2006

Before I do two posts on the latest First Communion workbook lessons, I want to give some big kudos to our parish for the supplemental material they used in class and sent home this week.First, they gave out Halloween candy! No, the candy wasn’t the good part. The good part is the paper attached to every bag of candy. It reads:


“Hallows Eve” sounds like Halloween.
Halloween is celebrated on the “Eve” or
night before “All Saints Day.”
All Saints Day used to be called “All Hallows.”
Candy given today on Halloween comes from
An old-time practice of eating “little cakes”
On “All Hallows” and then praying for
The souls of all our Catholic ancestors
Who died and are in Heaven.
Say a prayer this week for all the souls in Heaven!

I have never seen a parish explain where Halloween actually came from. Okay, so now you have a cheap tool for evangelization to give out with every piece of candy on Halloween.

Secondly, my daughter’s teacher explained what Holy Days of Obligation are and reminded everyone that they needed to go to Mass on All Saints’ Day.

My First CatechismThirdly, the teacher is supplementing the religious ed workbook with My First Catechism, a great, inexpensive catechism for little kids.

Finally, and best of all, is the religious education newsletter that was sent home with all religious education students today. The newsletter starts off with information about a “teaching Mass” that is required for all confirmands. This Mass is going to be a step-by-step walk through of the Mass with explanations given by our pastor. The next page provides a list of recommended movies for family viewing. The list gives ratings, a brief description and warns if the movie is too mature for young children. The list includes:


  • Enchanted April
  • Chicken Run
  • Lilies of the Field
  • The Bicycle Thief
  • Cheaper by the Dozen (the original)
  • Trip to Bountiful
  • The Incredibles
  • Roman Holiday
  • The Incredible Journey
  • March of the Penguins
  • Shindler’s List
  • Babette’s Feast
  • Singing in the Rain
  • The Pink Panther
  • National Velvet
  • The Tree of Wooden Clogs
  • Around the World in Eighty Days
  • Stagecoach
  • Chariots of Fire
  • Citizen Kane
  • Modern Times
  • Stand and Deliver
  • The Blue Angel
  • The Bear
  • Born Free

The best part of the packet is a five-page essay titled “The Catholic Family”. The essay comes from the Association for Catechumenal Ministry. We carry this company’s RCIA program and recommend it for every parish. The student book is $300 BUT you only need to buy one for the entire parish because once purchased you have unlimited reproduction rights for the entire book making it a great investment for the parish.

The essay starts off this way:

In the latter part of the twentieth century, a breakdown in the family occurred that had not previously been experienced. Divorce rates, which had been roughly stable except for a brief period after World War II, began rising and are more than twice as high as forty years ago. Many millions of children are victimized by the breakup of their parents’ marriages, and themselves grow up wary of committed relationships. Each new break with the law of God has brought additional havoc to the family. Not only divorce, but also contraception, cohabitation, and abortion have devastated marriage and the family. A huge variety of social pathologies exist that seem to rise as the number of intact, stable, two-parent homes falls. And, although children may manage to develop into healthy, happy adulthood, more who might have done so, do not. Yet there is a better way to create a home and raise children, to avoid these tragedies and rebuild the foundation of human society.

What a Catholic Family Looks Like

In God’s plan, the family is a community, founded upon the marital consent of the spouses, and the children they bring into the world or adopt. Marriage exists for the good of the spouses and for the procreation and education of the children with which God blesses them. The education and nurturing of their children is the right, responsibility, and privilege of parents. With this wonderful privilege comes accountability to God for its responsible fulfillment.

I would love to reprint the entire essay but since it is copyright, I’m not going to. I will say that the essay goes on to quote Ephesians on the roles of husbands and wives (both the bit about mutual submission and that part about wives being submissive that priests tend to leave out of the Gospel reading). The essay also talks about the Holy Family being the example to follow.

The section on raising children is also quite good. It starts:

Raising Catholic Children

Before God, before themselves, and before society, a husband and wife as parents in a family have awesome and indispensable responsibilities. First, they must know that they live not with but for each other; for happiness here and hereafter. They are responsible for living in such a way as to assure that they will be forever together in Heaven. They have a reciprocal responsibility for each other’s sanctity and salvation. To fulfill this obligation of mutual love and to provide the proper environment for wholesome Catholic living, parents establish a home characterized by respect, tenderness, fidelity, forgiveness, and self-sacrificing service. In this Catholic home, virtue can grow, for it is fostered by self-denial, solicitude, and just judgment as well as by a spirit of faith through which the things of God are given priority over the lesser things of daily concern.

Th next section gives a list of four things that are essential to religious education and says that these things need to begin in preschool:

  1. Children must learn to pray.
  2. Children must learn to worship in community. They insist that taking all your kids to Mass is vital and that teaching them to behave and pay attention is critical.
  3. Children must learn Catholic attitudes.
    1. A sense of the sacred
    2. A sense of family
    3. A sense of the good
    4. A love of truth
    5. A sense of service
    6. A sense of hope
  4. Parents must help their children learn to avoid and resist sin. This section is interesting because it ties in the Bible passage about a millstone around the neck to not only overt attempts to get children to sin but also to the failure of parents to teach their children right from wrong.

I hope your parishes provide wonderful material like this. It gives me hope that the next generation of the Faithful might actually have a clue about what the Faith is.

20% Off All Sophia Press Books and New Olive Wood Items for Christmas

October 25, 2006


October 25, 2006

We have a large selection of Olive Wood in stock. Each style is in limited supply. Make GREAT Christmas gifts! Many Nativity styles available.

This beautifully hand-carved statue of the Madonna and Child is 8 3/4 inches tall and made of olive wood from the Holy Land.

Only 1 left! Actual product pictured.

This beautifully hand-carved Nativity set is 3 inches tall and made of olive wood from the Holy Land. In the background is a tower with a hanging bell.

Limited Quantities Available.

This beautifully crafted rosary is 21 inches long and made of olive wood from the Holy Land. Uses 8mm beads. Crucifix measures 1 5/8in. x 1in.

This beautifully hand-carved Nativity set is 3 inches tall and made of olive wood from the Holy Land. In the background is a carving of a star.

Only 3 left!

These beautifully hand-carved statues of the donkey and three camels 3 1/2 inches tall and made of olive wood from the Holy Land.

Limited Quantities Available!

This beautifully hand-carved statue of the Holy Family fleeing into Egypt is 7 1/2 nches tall and made of olive wood from the Holy Land.

Only 1 left! Actual product pictured.


The Usual Suspects are Mad at Our Bishop Again…

October 24, 2006

It must be election season.

Commonweal is very upset at Bishop Sheridan in Colorado Springs because he addressed the intrinsic evils of abortion and gay marriage without bringing up the death penalty and unjust war. Stop me if you’ve heard this before.

The bishop’s column can be read here.

If you want to read the warmed over, regurgitated tripe that passes for intelligent discourse in liberal “Catholic” circles, click here.

If you want some resources to assist in making an intelligent decision about the upcoming election, we’d be happy to sell you some.

Why We Never Give Money to Pink Ribbon Campaigns

October 23, 2006

The journal of the Mayo Clinic has published a key article in its October 2006 issue entitled “Oral Contraceptive Use as a Risk Factor for Pre-menopausal Breast Cancer: A Meta-analysis”.

Basically, their major findings were that oral contraceptives ARE, beyond any doubt, linked with a measurable and statistically significant increase in pre-menopausal breast cancer.

Basically means that the contraceptive pill can make you have breast cancer before about age 50yrs.

More here.

Why Little Kids Wouldn’t Like to Visit St. Peter’s…

October 22, 2006

According to my four-year-old son“They don’t serve donuts.”

Time to Purchase Your Yearly Calendars and Christian Prayer Guides

October 20, 2006

Time to purchase your yearly goods!

October 19, 2006


Support our troops! Aquinas and More Catholic Goods has created this soldiers’ registry as a way for you to help support our troops’ spiritual needs while they are away from home.

We have a huge selection of military and patriotic goods!

This attractive 16-month 12×12 wall calendar: Lists all the indulgenced works of the Church on a month-at-a-glance basis, highlights the twenty-two special days when a partial indulgence becomes plenary to honor a day, color-codes the indulgences for easy identification, has scholarly notes on the history of indulgences, contains the conditions for earning both partial and plenary indulgences, gives the complete text of over a dozen different indulgenced prayers, carries weekly reminders for Friday fasts and Saturday confession.

This beautiful Calendar features a different full-color picture of Our Lady for each month, plus Marian prayers, Scripture passages and Catholic traditions on the Blessed Virgin Mary. It shows the Saints’ feast days and Sundays of both the New Calendar and the Traditional Calendar, plus Historical feasts that are no longer on either calendar–such as St. Philomena, St. Gemma Galgani, St. Tarsicius, and St. Dismas (the Good Thief). All feast days are marked as to their status.

This item will ship in November/October of 2006. Order early to insure you get your copy as soon as it becomes available!

An inexpensive, handy missal for use on all Sundays and Holy Days. This is the most popular Annual and most economical Missal for parish participation. It contains the complete Masses for all Sundays and Holydays from December 3, 2006, to November 25, 2007. Completely up-to-date.

This essential reference book provides a summary of all liturgical information for every day of the year including liturgical colors, liturgy of the hours psalms, readings, a brief note about the Saint of the day, notes about any special historical significance of a day, special intentions, anniversaries specific to each diocese and a brief overview of general liturgical law. Make sure you choose the correct book for your diocese. Imprimatur.

The Liturgy of the Hours is truly the prayer of the Church for all the people of God – bishops, priests, deacons, religious and the laity. The purpose of this handy Guide for Christian Prayer is to facilitate use of Christian Prayer, the one-volume Liturgy of the Hours, by providing clear, accurate references for each day of the year – always in accord with the principles on which this particular Breviary was compiled.

The Catholic Almanac remains the only annual, comprehensive guide to the Catholic Church. It is the esential one-volume reference work for students, teachers, researchers, homilists, writers, and media professionals.

Myth 1: A person can buy his way out of hell with indulgences.

This is a common misunderstanding, one that anti-Catholic commentators take advantage of, relying on the ignorance of both Catholics and non-Catholics. But the charge is without foundation. Since indulgences remit only temporal penalties, they cannot remit the eternal penalty of hell. Once a person is in hell, no amount of indulgences will ever change that fact. The only way to avoid hell is by appealing to God’s eternal mercy while still alive. After death, one’s eternal fate is set (Heb. 9:27).

Myth 2: A person can buy indulgences for sins not yet committed.

Read More here.

The Blessing Of the Minivan

October 20, 2006

I wish we had had this when we got our last minivan.

Our minivan is a Chevy Venture. It is the only minivan that seats eight. This Christmas we will try to go to Tucson, AZ with all the seats full of children under the age of eight. The only reason why we are attempting something this insane is that the next step up in size is out of our price range right now.