Tuesday, September 26, 2023
Tuesday, September 19, 2023
October is traditionally the month of the Holy Rosary.
It is also Respect Life month.
The two seem to go together so perfectly as I encourage you to pray the rosary each day for an increase of the awareness in our society of the sanctity of all human life—from the moment of conception until natural death. We especially pray to end practices like abortion, euthanasia and embryonic stem cell research and pray that all human beings be treated with their God-given dignity and respect.
Sadly, on the news just recently I learned about two young drivers in Las Vegas who deliberately hit a man on a bicycle and killed him. The cyclist was a retired police chief, Andreas Probst. The video of the incident was boldly posted by the laughing perpetrators on social media. How life has indeed become so cheap and seemingly disposable! It is frightening that there are various incidents where the homeless are set on fire, elderly are beaten and robbed, children are tortured and sexually assaulted, the infirm or handicapped are physically abused, etc., etc. We need to insist that all human life never be treated with such lack of dignity and respect, but rather as a gift from God which is to be honored and preserved.
Do not be deceived by people who claim things like: “A woman has a right to choose.” First of all, without denying our God-given free will, the conceived baby is a separate human person who had no “choice” in the matter of his/her conception. Since we may never “choose” that which is intrinsically evil, no one can make the “choice” to take an innocent human life.
With regard to embryonic stem cell research, the same results can be achieved by using stem cells taken by other means. I quote the Document of the Holy See on Human Cloning:
“There are two potential sources of stem cells for human research, firstly "adult" stem cells, which are derived from the umbilical cord blood, the bone marrow and other tissues and secondly "embryonic" stem cells, which are obtained by the disaggregation of human embryos. The Holy See opposes the cloning of human embryos for the purpose of destroying them in order to harvest their stem cells, even for a noble purpose, because it is inconsistent with the ground and motive of human biomedical research, that is, respect for the dignity of human beings. However, the Holy See applauds and encourages research using adult stem cells, because it is completely compatible with respect for the dignity of human beings.”
Euthanasia, sometimes called “mercy killing” is usually presented as a humane solution to a life of suffering. However, “playing God” and actively putting a person to death by some direct means is morally wrong. (A person may choose, however, to take no extraordinary means to keep himself/herself alive.)
Human life needs to be respected and honored as sacred. After all, Jesus Christ chose to become one of us—a human being—in all things but sin.
Fr. Ed Namiotka
Monday, September 18, 2023
Tuesday, September 12, 2023
Monday, September 11, 2023
Tuesday, September 5, 2023
Where did the summer months go?
School has begun and I’m sure there are some mixed emotions in many families. There may be disappointment that summer is over, a certain joy for students to be reunited with their classmates, relief for parents that the children are back in school, etc. etc. For many of us, it seems the summer just flew by too quickly! Tempus fugit! (Time flies!)
What is it about our fast-paced life in which so many of us seem to be carried away? For me, it can sometimes be described like a riptide experience. We often go about our lives doing so many things until we reach a point when we can be over our heads and become overwhelmed and overpowered by various activities and demands. We may seem rushed—maybe even a bit out-of-control. We may ask questions like: How did we get to this point? Where did the time go? Where did my life go?
When I was a child, it seemed there was more time in the day. It’s funny how various perspectives in life can change! There have always been 24 hours in the day. Why did there seem to be longer days back then?
When I become recollected and reflective, I realize that time is one of the precious gifts we have been given. We don’t know exactly how much time we have left in our lives, do we? How we spend those precious minutes, hours and days should have certain priorities. I suggest a few here:
- Take time for prayer each day. A life lived in prayer seems to be more manageable—especially when there are difficulties. I have found that when I take the time to pray, I am able to handle the day’s activities better and I find the necessary time to do what I need to do. When I push prayer aside, my days frequently are more chaotic.
- Take time to worship God—at the very minimum, once a week at Mass. I am amazed that so many people find excuses why they can’t (or don’t) make it a priority to go to Mass. We need to be spiritually fed with the Word of God and the Holy Eucharist. If we love God, then this small portion of my weekly time needs to be spent with my fellow Catholic Christians in prayer and worship.
- Take time for the family. The people in our lives who should certainly be a priority when divvying up our time and attention are our family members. Sharing meals, regular conversation, family activities, and common prayer are good ways to spend family time.
- Take the time to stay healthy. Physical, spiritual and emotional health are all important considerations for a well-balanced person. Do I exercise? Do I eat right? What productive activity do I use to release stress? Do I have a spouse, companion or good friend who I can talk to and share what is happening in my life? Do I take time for my spiritual needs? (After all, I am made of body and soul!)
- Take the time to enjoy life. Everyone has different enjoyments in life. I have found that a walk on the beach, on the boardwalk or in a park can refresh the mind and uplift the spirit. A bicycle ride also helps me relax. I enjoy listening to music. The various wholesome activities that help to refresh and renew a person are certainly worth prioritizing.
Life’s journey when compared to eternity is simply a blink of an eye! Spend the time you have remaining wisely, living life to the fullest!
Tempus fugit, momento mori. (Time flies, remember death.)
Fr. Ed Namiotka