The Twenty-Second Sunday in Ordinary Time
Su SUNDAY, n day, AUGUST Au g u s t28, 28, 2011 2011
VOL.65 NO. 035 032
Pope Ends World Youth Day Trip with Words of Thanks By Cindy Wooden Catholic News Servic MADRID (CNS) -- Pope Benedict XVI said he was leaving Madrid filled with gratitude to the Spanish people, the World Youth Day organizers and volunteers and the million-plus pilgrims who prayed with him. Spain is a great nation whose soundly open, pluralistic and respectful society is capable of moving forward without surrendering its profoundly religious and Catholic soul,” the pope told King Juan Carlos and other dignitaries Aug. 21 before boarding a plane to return to Rome. Spain has a reputation as a country where the overwhelming majority of residents are baptized, but faith has little resonance in public policy. But Pope Benedict said the way Spanish society handled World Youth Day showed it could rally for a great cause: “helping young people to become more deeply rooted in Jesus Christ, our savior.” The pope thanked the young pilgrims who came to Madrid for World Youth Day with their “joyful, enthusiastic and intense presence. To them I say thank you, and I congratulate you for the witness which you gave. “I leave Spain very happy and grateful to everyone. But above
This week’s issue includes a special section sponsored by the Department of Public Health and Social Services. Please see pages 7-10 for information on healthy living for you and your family.
Catechetical-Liturgical Conference Registration See Details on Page 2
all, I am grateful to God, our Lord, who allowed me to celebrate these days so filled with enthusiasm and grace, so charged with dynamism and hope,” the 84-year-old pope said at Madrid’s Barajas airport. Many of the young pilgrims were on hand at the airport, waving mostly Spanish flags and cheering for the Holy Father as he reached his final destination of
the four-day whirlwind tour. World Youth Day lets the church look toward the future with greater hope and trust in God, he said. That is why the church “continues to be young and full of life,” even as it confronts challenging situations. The grace of Christ, the pope said, “tears down the walls and overcomes the barriers which sin erects between people and
generations,” a fact the pilgrims at World Youth Day experienced firsthand. The pope said the celebration also proved that young people will respond happily and massively “when one proposes to them, in sincerity and truth, an encounter with Jesus Christ.”
WYD Week in Pictures See pages 12-13
See THANKS on page 14
Pope To Proclaim St. John of Avila “Doctor of the Church” By Cindy Wooden Catholic News Service
While in Madrid for World Youth Day, Pope Benedict XVI announced that he will name St. John of Avila the Catholic Church’s 34th doctor of the church. The 16th-century Spanish saint was a popular preacher and spiritual adviser. He will join the short list of Catholic saints given the title as eminent teachers of the faith. St. John is depicted in the 18thcentury painting “The Blessed John of Avila” by Pierre Hubert Subleyras. (CNS photo/Erich Lessing, courtesy of Art Resouce in New York).
MADRID (CNS) -- Telling seminarians they must prepare seriously for the priesthood by devoting themselves to becoming saints, Pope Benedict XVI gave them a role model: St. John of Avila, who will become the Catholic Church’s 34th doctor of the church. At the end of a Mass Aug. 20 with some 6,000 seminarians from around the world, the pope announced he soon would add the 16th-century Spanish saint to the short list of saints formally recognized for making a big mark on Catholic theology through their teaching and writing. His remarks were greeted with sustained applause in Madrid’s Almudena Cathedral. Pope Benedict entrusted all the seminarians, as well as priests and bishops, to the intercession of St. John, a master of spirituality and a renowned preacher.
“As they persevere in the same faith which he taught, may they model their hearts on that of Jesus Christ the good shepherd,” the pope prayed. Pope Benedict did not say when he would make the formal proclamation, and while the announcement was a bit of a surprise, it was almost a replay of how the news came out the last time a pope declared a doctor of the church. The 33rd saint honored with the title was St. Therese of Lisieux. It was during World Youth Day in Paris in 1997 that Blessed John Paul II made the announcement; the formal ceremony was held at the Vatican two months later. The doctors of the church are all saints and come from both the Eastern and Western church traditions. They include early church fathers like Sts. Jerome, John Chrysostom and Augustine, as well as major theologians like Sts. Thomas Aquinas, Bonaventure and John of See Doctor on page 6
Increase in Devotion to Mary? See Page 14 TO KE N O F FA IT H Preach the Gospel at all times; when necessary, use words. St. Francis of Assisi
INSIDE Announcements Archdiocesan Church & Society Devotion & Spirituality Manhoben Guam Sunday Gospel & Reflection World Youth Day
03 02 06 14 11 05 03 12
Sunday, August 28, 2011
MATUNA SI YU’OS
R O M A N C AT H O L I C N EW S PA P E R
With Your Catholic Community Listen to KOLG 24 hours a day on 90.9 FM (Sunday masses at 9:30am)
Tune in for Mass every Sunday at 9:30am on Channel 8
ARCHDIOCESAN CATECHETICAL-LITURGICAL CONFERENCE TO PREPARE FAITHFUL FOR NEW MISSAL In preparation for the promulgation of the new edition of the Roman Missal on the first Sunday of Advent this year, the Archdiocese of Agana is focusing its LiturgicalCatechetical Conference this year on topics related to changes in the translation of the liturgy. The conference is intended to help all clergy, religion and CCD teachers, parish liturgical leaders, and all interested laity prepare for this landmark renewal of the liturgy. This liturgical renewal, grounded in a more faithful translation of the parts of the Mass from Latin into English, are expected by liturgists and scholars to allow worshippers to experience a far richer appreciation of the Eucharist, particularly of its sacrificial nature. This translation will also promote a deeper understanding of the parts of the Mass, such as the Nicene Creed, in that it employs the more literal language of theology. Scholars anticipate that this will help the Catholic faithful to better understand both
the fundamental beliefs of the Faith as well as better connect with the Church’s 2,000 year old heritage of faithfulness to Christ. The conference, scheduled for September 10, 2011 at the Father Duenas Memorial School Phoenix Center, will feature plenary sessions with speakers Fr. David Knight, Fr. Val Rodriquz, and Fr. Danny Ferrandiz, in addition to two “break-out” sessions, concentrating on more that 20 topics related to the liturgical changes about to take place. Besides registering at the Chancery office, registration is also conveniently available online at www. archagana.org. By registering online, participants may choose their break-out sessions of interest and requires only a few minutes. Registration fee is $15 if paid by August 29. Registration after August 30 is $20, and $25 if registered on the day of the conference. For further information, please call the Chancery at 472-6116.
To register online, go to the Archidiocesan website at www.archagana.org. Then click on the “Register Online” tab (top picture). This tab will direct your web browser to the online registration form (lower picture).
San Vicente Catholic School Opens New Academic Year
Most Reverend Anthony Sablan Apuron O.F.M. Cap., D.D. Director
Reverend Monsignor James L.G. Benavente Editor-in-Chief
Jeffrey L. Fitzgerald Graphic Artist
Sedrick S. Serisola Staff
Luz S. Oberiano Contact
Phone: 671.989.6391 Fax: 671.472.1729 E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org News Deadline
Deadline for news stories and photos is noon Tuesday prior to the date of publication. Please note that the U Matuna reserves the right to select and prioritize content based on relevancy and editorial discretion. Ad Deadline
Deadline for reserving advertising space is noon Tuesday prior to the date of publication. Camera-ready copy is due at the U Matuna Si Yu’os office no later than noon Wednesday prior to the date of publication. The office of the U Matuna Si Yu’os is now located on the second floor of the Dulce Nombre Maria Cathedral-Basilica in Hagåtña.
MIS S ION
By Monica F. Limtiaco for the U Matuna Si Yu’os
On the morning of Monday, August 8, 2011, students gathered at the school’s auditorium for the first day of school to give glory to God and to pray for an enjoyable, faithfilled and productive year. Both new and returning students and staff were welcomed during the morning assembly. New students and teachers were acknowledged and presented with “Welcoming Shell Leis”. Warm smiles and beaming faces of young
is an entity of the Archdiocesan Development Group 207 Archbishop Felixberto C. Flores Street Hagåtña, Guam 96910
and eager students filled the auditorium. As San Vicente Catholic School begins its academic year, the focus once again will be its mission and purpose “to proclaim the gospel, develop a faith community, and educate for service to humanity, integrating the Catholic faith with the learning process”. The school will continue focusing on Improving Student Learning and prepare students to be productive, engaged and active citizens in our democratic society.
(Top) Sister Joseph Ann, SSND Principal with students Rebekah Bautista and Olivia Camacho (Bottom) Enthusiastic parents Annette Wells and Joe Cruz accompany their daughter Aariyah to her classroom. Photos Courtesy of Monica F. Limtiaco
The U Matuna Si Yu’os is published every week by the Archdiocese of Agaña, Guam. Our mission is to print and distribute a true report of the Roman Catholic Church’s ministry of changing lives though the proclamation of the Gospel of Jesus Christ. By offering news and commentary about issues impacting the Catholic Church, it aims to serve as a focal point for the e xpression and discussion of the Catholic faith on Guam.
U MAT U N A ON LIN E U Matuna Si Yu’os is happy to announce that we will be launching our new website September 4, 2011. In addition to our weekly printed content, our site will feature regular daily updates of all news pertaining to the Catholic Faith on Guam, in the US, and around the world. We look forward to bringing you the very best Catholic news coverage that we can provide.
Sunday, August 28, 2011
SUNDAY GOSPEL & REFLECTION
Archbishop Anthony Sablan Apuron, O.F.M. Cap., D.D.
Our Archbishop’s Gospel Reflection
isters and Brothers: Jesus challenges us today to take up our cross and follow him. To respond to his challenge is to take the narrow road and live the pains that carrying the cross entails. Like Jesus, who was tempted by Satan to take the easy way, we are continually tempted to desist from continuing with our difficult journey. Most of us want to lead a life of leisure in a pain-free world. And yet we are confronted with violence, hatred, hunger, injustice, incurable Refleksion Ibangheliu ginen Atsubispo diseases, and natural calamities. In the face of all these, do we “rejoice in Mane’lu-hu, ha u’uga hit si Jesu Kristo pa’go para ta katga i kilu’os-ta yan the Lord.”? Some of us probably try to para ta tattitiyi gue’. I para ta oppe i inagang-na i para ta chule’ i mahihot bargain with God. “Spare me from these na chalan yan para ta fanla’la’ gi pininiti ni i matkan i kilu’os ha nana’i hit. trials, Lord, and I will henceforth lead Taimanu ha si Jesu Kristo tinienta as Satanas para u chule’ i libianu na a virtuous life.” Others ask in despair: chalan, man ma tietienta hit para ta suhayi chumule’ i makat na biahi-ta. “Why me, Lord?” Jesus’ passion does not Meggai giya hit manmalagu’ manla’la’ gi libianu yan tai pininiti na tano’. Ya end in death. By rising from the dead, ta fafana’ i nina’lamen, chinatli’e’, ninalang, tai hustisihia, i ti sina mahgong he gives us a vivid--and more accuratena chetnot, yan i mannaturat na dinimalas. -picture of what it means to follow him. Gi mafana’ este siha kao “manmamagof hit gi Saina?” Guaha entre hita We can appreciate the value of sharing chumachagi manatulaika yan si Yu’os: “Na’ libre yu’ ginen este siha na the passion of Christ if we move from chinagi, Asaina, ya despues di este bai hu la’la’ gi lina’la’ bittut.” I pumalu “sight” to “insight.” In the level of the sight, man-mamamaisen, “Hafa na guahu, Asaina?” I mina’sapet Jesu Kristo ti we see difficulties, we feel anguish, and makpo’ ha gi finatai-na. Ginen i numa’lon lina’la’-na, ha na’i hit u sen klaru we almost come to believe that existence yan mas kabales na litratu ni hafa kumeke’ilek-na para ta tattiyi gue’. is meaningless. Suffering overwhelms us Ta agradesi i bali-na i para ta fanaonao gi pinadesi-na si Jesu Kristo precisely because we do not know what yanggen manhanao hit ginen “ma’atan” asta “inatan.” Gi bandan “ma’atan”, we are suffering for. ta li’e’ i minappot, ta siente i atburotu, ya kana’ manmafatto hit ta hongge But in the sphere of “insight”, we find na i lina’la’ tai sustansiha. I mina’sapet ha hohonu hit mampos sa’ put ti ourselves asking, “What is the reason tatungo’ hafa na manmasasapet ha hit. behind this, Lord?” Only those who Lao gi bandan “inatan,” ta sodda hit tafaisen-mamaisa hit “Hafa i rason gi tatten este, Asaina?” Ayu ha siha i umekspiriensiha mina’sapet yan mana’sina pumo’lu este gi dinanchen inatan sina kumomprende i bali yan i sustan-sihan i lina’la’. Maseha ti komprendiyon, i piniti yan mina’sapet hafanana’gue’ hit na’manman na leksion put lina’la’. Gi maseden i ekspiriensiha-ta chinatsaga para u fana’gue’ hit este siha na leksion, i hinengge-ta luma’la’ ya lumalataddong. ACADEMY OF OUR LADY OF GUAM Sa put ta tungo’ na i yo’ase’ na Tata u saosao kada lago’ ginen i matata, manmama’ taotao hit ni bula inangokko yan guinaiya. I para ta katga • SEPTEMBER 5: Labor Day Holiday, i kilu’os-ta yan para ta tattiyi si Jesu Kristo guiya este i para ta po’lo i NO CLASSES inangokko-ta as Yu’os ni mannana’i todu para i minaolek i lina’la’. I mina’sapet ti u choma’ hit “manmangof yan i Saina” yanggen ta tungo’ na’ este intrada para i binilan lina’la’ yan si Jesu Kristo yan i Tata. I iniga i para • SEPTEMBER 22: Mercy Day Liturgy ta po’lo i ekspiriensiha-ta gi propriu na inatan. Mungga hit manmanoppe para i “ma’atan” i mina’sapet. En lugat nihi ya ta takka i tinaddong-na ya ta • SEPTEMBER 23: Mercy Day Holiday, ganna i “inatan.” I mina’sapet u giha hit para i marinueban i hinengge-ta gi NO CLASSES Kristo ni bumiabiahi yan hita. Ohalara ya u bula guinaiya i ha’anen-miyu ya i todu hana’sina na Yu’os Please visit the school’s website at infambinendisi, i Tata yan i Lahi-na yan i Espiritu Santo. Amen. www.aolg.edu.gu or call 477-8203 for more information.
have experienced suffering and have succeeded in putting it in the proper perspective come to understand the value and meaning of life. Para-doxical as it may seem, pain and suffering teach us wonderful les-sons about life. By letting our experiences of hardship teach us these lessons, our faith comes alive and attains greater depths. Because we know that the compassionate Father will wipe away every tear from our eyes, we will be a people full of hope and love. To take up one’s cross and follow Jesus is to put one’s trust in God who gives everything for the goodness of life. Suffering will not hinder us from “rejoicing with the Lord” when we know that it is the entrance into the fullness of life with Jesus and the Father. The challenge is therefore to put our experiences of suffering in the proper prospective. Let us respond not merely to the “sight” of suffering. Rather, let us fathom its hidden depths and gain “insight.” Suffering will lead us to the renewal of our faith in the Christ who journeys with us. May your day be filled with love and may Almighty God bless you in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit. Amen.
Mina’ Bente Dos Damenggo Gi Otdinariu Na Tiempo IBANGHELIU (MATEO 16:21-27) Ha tutuhon si Jesus fuma’nu’i i mandisipulu-na na debi di u hanao para Jerusalen para u famadesi meggai ginen i manamko’, i manma’gas mamale’, ya n i ma’estron i Lai, ya u mapunu’, lao gi mina’ tres dihas para u mana’la’la’ ta’lo.
guaha malago’ dumalalaki yu’, debi di u maleffannaihon nu guiya mismo, u katga i kilu’os-na, ya u dalalaki yu’. Sa’ i taotao ni malagu’ na para u satba i lina’la’-na siempre ha na’falingu; lao i taotao ni ha na’falingu i lina’la’-na put guahu siempre ha ganna todu i tano’ lao ha na’falingu i lina’la’Kinene’ gue’ as Pedro gi un na? Ahi’! Taya i taotao sina ha banda ya tinituhon linalatde. na’innaihon put i para u ganna Ilek-na si Pedro, “Si Yu’os ti u tatte i lina’la’-na. sedi este, Asaina. Ti debi di u masusedi este nu hagu!” Ha Sa’ i Lahen i Taotao esta ha’ bira gue’ si Jesus ya ilek-na as para u fatto gi glorian i Tata-na Pedro: “Ritira hao ginen guahu, yan i mananghet-na siha, ya Satanas! Estotbo hao gi me’na- guennao nai siempre ha apasi hu, sa’ i hinasso-mu hinasson kada unu sigun i fina’tinas-na. taotao ahi ti hinasson Yu’os!” Despues ilek-na si Jesus nu i mandisipulu-na: “Yanggen
NOTRE DAME HIGH SCHOOL •
AUGUST 30: Picture Day
AUGUST 31: Picture Make-Up Day
SEPTEMBER 1: Mass of the Holy Spirit and visit with Archbishop Apuron – 8:30 at NDHS campus
SEPTEMBER 5: Labor Day – No Classes
SEPTEMBER 6 – 9: Week of 1st Qtr Progress Report Distribution
SEPTEMBER 8: College Night
SEPTEMBER 16: NDHS Service Day
SEPTEMBER 23: Faculty/StaffDevelopment Day
2011 ARCHDIOCESAN CATECHETICAL-LITURGICAL CONFERENCE Conference to be held on Saturday, September 10, 2011 at Fr. Duenas Memorial School—Phoenix Center. Registration to continue until August 29, 2011. Registration forms are available online at www.archagana.org. For more information, please call the Chancery Office: 472-6116.
PITI CHURCH FAMILY MOVIE NIGHT The Assumption of Our Lady Parish will be holding a Family Movie Night from 7pm until 9pm on Friday September 2, 2011 at the Church Social Hall. Admission is $1 and children 5 years and younger are free. Hot dogs, popcorn, drinks and other items will be on sale. The movie will be family orientated and will be announced at a later date. All proceeds from this event will go toward the Church’s fundraising efforts. Please send any announcements to: email@example.com.
Sunday, August 28, 2011
Sunday, August 28, 2011
FDMS Graduate Earns Army Commission Zion Sablan Perez was commissioned as a 2nd Lieutenant in the Army Signal Corps on May 13, 2011 at the University of Southern California where he participated in the Army ROTC Program. 2nd Lt. Perez graduated from the University of Southern California that same day with a Bachelors of Science degree in Computer Science from the Viterbi School of Engineering. He is a 2007 graduate and salutatorian of Father Duenas Memorial High School and a 2003 middle school graduate of Bishop Baumgartner Memorial Catholic School. He is currently at Fort Gordon in Georgia undergoing training and will report to his first duty station in Fort Huachuca, Arizona in March 2012.
â€œTherefore, endure hardness, as a good soldier of Jesus Christ.â€? 2 Timothy 2:3
Pictured from left to righty: Ken Perez (father), Zion Perez, Elsa Perez (mother), Rufina Perez (grandmother), Benito Perez (grandfather) and Bob P. Cruz (uncle). Photo courtesy of Elsa Perez.
Pictured (left to right): Ken and Elsa Perez (parents), 2nd Lt. Zion Perez, Rufina and Benito Perez (grandparents). Photo courtesy of Elsa Perez.
Sunday, August 28, 2011
CHURCH AND SOCIETY
ITE, MISSA EST
From the Mass to the Market: Engaging the World Beyond the Church Doors
“Should We Make More Money?”
Some months ago I found myself in considerations can be among those a conversation with the author of a new reasons. book about Natural Family Planning. I My friend had arrived at what he had written to thank believed to be his economic threshold him for writing the with two children, but then, so had I. The book. He replied difference was that with child number and inquired about three I shifted career gears in order to my family. I advised provide for a family size that was in that my wife and excess of my original plan - though my I were blessed reason for the shift was not to afford to have eleven more children, but to afford the children children and shared I already had with nice stuff: house, car, a bit about the joys education, vacations, ballet lessons, and challenges of a comfort, gadgets, etc. large family. In hindsight, it seems to have been a Tim Rohr I was a bit amused “divine trick”. While I might have pursued at his next email in a larger income for material reasons, a which he asked what I did for a living. I larger income made me less concerned knew why he was asking. Today, most about the prospects of a larger family, couples preset their family size to what and a larger family we soon had. And they believe they can afford so its natural while challenges remain, the bottom to think that larger families means a line was the more control we had over larger income. our income, the less concerned we were He also shared that though he had just about another child. written a book about being open to life, In answer to my friend’s question, I he was struggling with doing what he had replied that though I had begun my just written about. Like many Catholics, work life as a teacher, my growing family he had reached the maximum number of forced me to increase my income, and children he thought his paycheck could I had moved to a career in sales. He bear and had employed NFP to put off commended my wife and me for our having more kids. openness to life, shared that sales wasn’t As most Catholics know, Church for him, wished me the best, and I no teaching allows recourse to periodic longer heard from him. abstinence for the spacing or even I wanted to tell him that sales wasn’t suspension of child bearing for serious for me either and that if I had my druthers reasons. “Serious reasons” is the key to I’d be conducting choral ensembles and the morality of the method and financial not business presentations. Nevertheless,
children had trumped my druthers. Out of this little episode a question formed: if one is limiting the size of one’s family because of money, and one has the ability to make more money, does one then have the responsibility to make more money? After all, as Catholics we stood before God on our wedding day and promised to “accept children willingly and lovingly” from God. This is a tough one. A desire for more money is often associated with greed and materialism. Yet lack of money is probably the main reason couples do not accept more children “willingly and lovingly” as they promised they would. What to do? There are the obvious limitations such as illness and physical or mental incapacity. But beyond these, the question remains: Is it moral for Catholics to suspend the fount of life because of self-imposed fiscal limits? Is it moral to eschew a career change that could support a larger family simply because one finds the work uncomfortable? I don’t have the answers, and in hindsight, I’m glad eleven children slipped into our lives before I even had the questions. Well, off to work.
This column reflects only the views of the author and does not necessarily reflect the views of the staff and management of the U Matuna. This column can be commented on and shared via email and social media at www.themassneverends.com
Continued from page 1 the Cross. In addition to St. Therese of Lisieux, the women doctors of the church are Sts. Catherine of Siena and Teresa of Avila. Jesuit Father Federico Lombardi, Vatican spokesman, told reporters Aug. 20 that a date for the ceremony has not been set. He described St. John of Avila, who lived 15001569, as “a great master of priestly spirituality,” and an important influence on Spanish Catholic luminaries like St. Ignatius of Loyola, St. Francis Xavier, St. Teresa of Avila and St. John of the Cross. “He was one of the important figures of the golden age of Spanish spirituality,” Father Lombardi said. During the Mass for seminarians attending World Youth Day, Pope Benedict said the young men preparing for priesthood are “proof of how Christ continues to call young disciples and to make them his apostles.” Pope Benedict told the students their time in the seminary “should be years of interior silence, of unceasing prayer, of constant study” and gradual introduction into pastoral activities. But prayer, study and pastoral activity are not enough, he said: The seminarians must strive for holiness. “The holiness of the church is, above all, the objective holiness of the very person of Christ” and “we have to be saints so as not to create a contradiction between the sign that we are and the reality that we wish to signify.” Seminarians must be open to the grace of the Holy Spirit that will help them decide to live a life of celibacy, simplicity and obedience, he said. “Approach the priesthood only if you are firmly convinced that God is calling you to be his ministers, and if you are completely determined to exercise it in obedience to the church’s precepts,” he said.
Sunday, August 28, 2011
Sunday, August 28, 2011
Sunday, August 28, 2011
Sunday, August 28, 2011
Sunday, August 28, 2011
Keeping Christ on Campus by Gabriel M. Lapid
As a young student, my start-of-theday routine was mostly repetitive and uneventful – wake up, stumble into the shower, and eat breakfast. In fact, my mornings have hardly changed years later as I continue my education in college. One day, however, when I was an elementary school student, my mom decided to add a small twist to my routine. Before she dropped me off to school, she called me to her room. She then asked me to hold my hand out as she picked one of her bottles of perfume. Gently, she pressed down on the top and a light mist came to rest on the back of my hand. As the sweet fragrance began to fill the air, I wondered about what prompted my mom to do this. Surely my odor was not an issue because I had just showered. Plus, I was a young boy. Why would I need perfume for ladies? My mom continued by rubbing my hand in order to let the perfume dry. Satisfied, she explained, “See, now when you’re at school, even if I’m not there, you can smell your hand and think of me.” I sniffed my hand and with that, my routine continued and I was taken to school where I remember smelling the perfume several times. My mom’s invitation to remember her was a success. Similarly, Jesus constantly calls upon all students to remember Him in school. Thinking about your expe-
rience last school year, how often have you listened to Him? Forgetting about God seems to happen more often as the world pushes to be more secular – to keep God and anything about Him within the confines of a church. We have seen such an example when people advocated keeping prayer, including personal voluntary prayer, out of schools. Yet, keeping Christ with us at school even at public institutions is a necessity. While some may claim that the banning of prayer in public schools is essential to the separation of church and state, we know that it is a constitutional right to freely choose and practice our faith. More importantly, we owe everything we have and all that we are to God. Each school supply and piece of knowledge that we gain is a gift from our Heavenly Father who blesses us every day. We must realize that God hears and answers our prayers wherever we are. We do not have to be doing our homework in a church pew for Him to grant us the patience and perseverance to complete the assignment. Therefore, remembering Christ at home, school, and everywhere else is truly right. Keeping Christ in school can be done by speaking to Him (praying) or by just thinking about Him (meditating). Prayer is used to thank God and to ask for any kind of help that we might need while meditation allows us to have relaxed, intimate moments with the Lord. Both methods are easy to use in school whenever possible. Aside from
the more obvious suggestions about praying before classes, tests, and meals, students can start their own creative ways to keep in touch with God. A few suggestions follow. First, turn your class schedule into a prayer sequence. Just like we use beads to keep track of the mysteries on a rosary, students can reflect on that day’s mysteries as they walk to each class. For example, when you walk to 4th period on Monday, you could focus on the 4th Joyful Mystery (The Visitation). Adjust the activity to the number of classes you have in a day. Another way to keep God in your school day is to sing or hum a favorite church song. If you need practice with the words or the tune, many Christian songs are easily accessible on Internet sites such as YouTube. On the way to school, you could also tune in to Catholic radio 90.9 FM or listen to a CD or
MP3 player. Lastly, students can bring a reminder of Christ with them to school. Whether it’s a bracelet around your wrist, a trinket on your bag, or a symbol you drew on a notebook, a visible reminder will help you focus on God. If you begin to get used to the sight of something, make a noticeable change. Acts like these can easily become habits with parental involvement. Not only did my mom find a way to have me remember her in school, but she also constantly encouraged me to call on the Holy Spirit for guidance in my classes. The message stuck thanks to her persistence. With a heartfelt desire and help from their parents, students of all ages can learn great lessons from the best Teacher of them all.
Scriptural Cryptogram The sentence below is encrypted using a secret code. Your job is to break the code by substituting the correct letter for the ones given. Each letter given in the code always represents the same letter throughout the puzzle. Your clues:
H = i, and I = t
“H GDRX JYI KYUX IY KDBB IGX CHNGIXYEM SEI HJMIXDQ MHJJXCM IY CXOXJIDJKX.” The answer will be in next week’s U Matuna Si Yu’os.
Happy 25 Jubilee, Fr. Felixberto C. Leon Guerrero, O.F.M., Cap. The Parish Family of Santa Teresita Catholic Church along with the Capuchin Franciscan Friars joyfully invite all family and friends of Fr. Felixberto C. Leon Guerrero, O.F.M., Cap. to a celebration in his honor on Sunday, August 28th beginning with Holy Mass at 4:30pm at the Santa Teresita Catholic Church. Dinner to follow in the Parish Social Hall.
WORLD YOUTH DAY
Sunday, August 28, 2011
Pope Tells Young to Build on their Faith, Share It with the World formed into action, service who are looking for something who suffer, and take time to and love for others. In addi- greater,” the pope said. discern their vocation? tion, it must be lived within the Share the faith, he said, and “I think if you asked them Catholic News Service church, the community of be- help them see they are right now, many of them would say lievers to whom Jesus entrust- when “their heart tells them yes, they will try,” he said. “It MADRID (CNS) -- Pope Bene- ed his message and his mission that more authentic values is my profound hope that the dict XVI saw that 1.4 million of salvation. do exist” and they resist being experiences of the past two young people could be buf“We cannot follow Jesus on “seduced by the empty prom- weeks will stay with them, and feted by gusty winds and our own,” he said. Those who ises of a lifestyle which has no that the experience of God’s drenched by a driving rain and still fall silently to their knees to adore the Eucharist. At the final Mass closing World Youth Day Aug. 21 in Madrid, the pope challenged the Catholic pilgrims to take that faith, make it grow and share it with the world. Despite the hardships of getting to the Cuatro Vientos military air base in blistering heat Aug. 20 and the downpour during the nighttime vigil with the pope, hundreds of thousands of young people from around the world spent the night on the open field, praying, singing and perhaps trying to snatch a few hours’ sleep. But they were up, ready and rowdy when the pope arrived for the morning Mass. The pope noticed. In his homily, he said, the vision of that sea of happy souls Pilgrims pray during Eucharistic adoration being led by Pope Benedict XVI at the World Youth Day prayer “fills my heart with joy.” vigil in Madrid Aug. 20. Pilgrims endured 30 minutes of heavy rain during the vigil. (CNS photo/Paul Har“I think of the special love ing) (Aug. 20, 2011) with which Jesus is looking upon you. Yes, the Lord loves try “approach the life of faith room for God.” presence and of the church you and calls you his friends,” with the kind of individualism Even before Mass began, which they have felt here will the pope told the young. so prevalent today” and risk officials of World Youth Day be the seedbed for a deepenTo the joy of the crowd, par- not encountering the real Jesus broadcast another challenging ing commitment to Christian ticularly the Brazilians present, or “following a counterfeit Je- message to the crowd, telling discipleship. But as with all of at the end of the Mass, the pope sus,” he said. them that most pilgrims would us, time will tell. announced that the next interChrist asks each person, not be able to receive Commu“Many of the youth have alnational gathering of World “Who do you say that I am?” the nion during Mass and asking ready shown signs of serious Youth Day would be held in Rio pope said. them to offer it up as a sacrifice commitment to a life of Chrisde Janeiro in 2013. “Respond to him with gen- for the pope. tian discipleship; others are In his homily at the erosity and courage, as befits Jesuit Father Federico Lom- certainly searching. There is no Mass, Pope Benedict said faith young hearts like your own,” he bardi, Vatican spokesman, doubt, however, that the expeis not about understanding a told the young. said the plan was to distribute rience of World Youth Day is a bunch of facts, “it is an ability “Let me urge you to strength- Communion from 17 eucharis- gift for both those already comto grasp the mystery of Christ’s en this life of faith which has tic chapels set up on the perim- mitted and those still searchperson in all its depth.” been handed down from the eter of the airfield. The storm ing,” he said. Even if it feels like a struggle time of the apostles,” he said. Aug. 20 destroyed several of the James Arblaster of Woodat times, faith is not primarily “Make Christ, the Son of God, chapel-tents, and police asked land, Australia, told Catholic about people working out their the center of your life.” organizers to dismantle most News Service he struggles with thoughts about God; it starts Pope Benedict told the of the others because they the church’s teaching on the with the gift of God’s love and young people, who had been posed a danger in the wind. theology of the body and the God’s reaching out to each per- texting, tweeting and posting Canadian Bishop Donald church’s stance on homosexuson, he said. Facebook updates about their Bolen of Saskatoon, Saskatch- ality. Faith entails “a personal rela- adventures, that whenever we ewan, joined about 80 pilgrims “I’ve been able to attend cattionship with Christ, a surren- really “like” anything, we share from four groups in his diocese. echesis and learn about more der of our whole person, with it, and that must hold true for He said the pilgrims found of the in-depth arguments all our understanding, will and faith as well. the whole experience “enjoy- for different (teachings the feelings,” he said. “You, too, have been given able and meaningful, and in church has). That has assisted But the pope went even the extraordinary task of being some instances, transforma- in explaining a lot of positions, further, telling the young that disciples and missionaries of tive. Will they pray daily, cel- although I still remain uncona personal relationship with Christ in other lands and coun- ebrate the sacrament of recon- vinced on homosexuality,” he Jesus always must be trans- tries filled with young people ciliation frequently, help those said. By Cindy Wooden
Arblaster said one of the priests at confession also helped clear up some of the church’s teachings on sexuality for him. Brigette Liss, a 26-year-old from Chicago, said she has a difficult time attending church every Sunday while working. “This experience has helped me come back to Mass and see how important it is to keep up on your faith and be sure that every day you take time out to pray and think of God,” she said. Liss said it was the catechesis and the witness of so many young people alive in their faith --”wearing it on their sleeves” -- that helped her. She also went to confession for the first time in four years. Father Loreto “Bong” Rojas, pastor of St. James Parish in Davis, Calif., traveled to Madrid with 33 youths, ages 1424, from the Diocese of Sacramento. He said just the way they handled the hardship of getting to Cuatro Vientos -- squashed like sardines on the Metro and walking miles in the heat -- shows they got the message, especially about charity. “They may not be able to verbalize it on a theoretical level, but on a practical level, they are there,” he said. “It’s very real. We’re a big group and they are very mindful of each other. Some were not up to the walk and others, who wanted to experience the 8-kilometer (5-mile) walk, volunteered to stay with them.” Yago de la Cierva, director of World Youth Day Madrid, told CNS the event was planned to be “more religious and less entertaining” than some previous youth gatherings. “We are proud of our Catholic identity. This is who we are. It is what we wanted people to know and what we shared,” he said. “It was really moving how people participated.” Contributing to this story was Gretchen R. Crowe in Madrid. U Matuna Si Yu’os thanks all who have prayed for the pilgrims from Guam who attended WYD in Madrid. May the discovery, reform, and renewal of faith in Madrid build up the Church on Guam as we strive for re-evangelization.
Sunday, August 28, 2011
WORLD YOUTH DAY
WYD: THE WEEK IN REVIEW
(Top Left) Young people carry the World Youth Day cross during the Way of the Cross led by Pope Benedict XVI in Plaza de Cibeles in Madrid Aug. 19. (CNS photo/Paul Haring) (Top Right) Pope Benedict XVI leads Benediction of the Eucharist during the World Youth Day prayer vigil at Cuatro Vientos airfield in Madrid Aug. 20. Hundreds of thousands of young people, set to camp out for the night in the open field,endured driving rain and wind at the start of the service. The pope continued with the evening’s rituals after the storm cleared. (CNS photo/Paul Haring)
(Middle Right) Pope Benedict XVI sits in a temporary confessional as he offers the sacrament of reconciliation to four World Youth Day volunteers in Madrid’s main park Aug. 20. The pope heard the confessions of the pilgrims, as did many priests, at the 200 white confessionals set up in the park for World Youth Day. (CNS photo/L’Osservatore Romano via Reuters) (Middle Left) Pope Benedict XVI, celebrates a Mass with seminarians inside the Cathedral of Our Lady of Almudena in Madrid Aug. 20. During the service, the pope announced his decision to proclaim St. John of Avila, patron of Spanish clergy, as the 34th doctor of the church. The pope was in Spain for the celebration of World Youth Day. (CNS photo/Alessia Giuliani, Catholic Press Photo) (Lower Left) Lightning flashes behind pilgrims as they attend the World Youth Day prayer vigil led by Pope Benedict XVI at the Cuatro Vientos airfield in Madrid Aug. 20. (CNS photo/Juan Medina, Reuters)
Sunday, August 28, 2011
DEVOTION AND SPIRITUALITY
Renewed Interest Growing in Mary’s Role in Faith Life, Depiction in Art By Bob Zyskowski Catholic News Service DULUTH, Minn. (CNS) -There is renewed interest in Mary -- her role in lives of faith, how to interpret references to her in Scripture, how she is depicted in art and literature -- enough to spark a second “Mary in Our Day” conference, this one in Duluth and held on the feast of the Assumption, Aug. 15. “Her call to holiness still echoes,” explained Christian Brother Mark McVann. “Mary continues today to be a major spiritual force and resource in the modern world.” The College of St. Scholastica hosted this second exploration of the enduring significance of the Blessed Mother. The first was organized by St. Mary’s College of California last year. Brother Mark, a professor of theology and religious studies at St. Mary’s, said the revival of interest in Mary and Marian devotions is evident in the vol-
ume of recent books on Mary, in the University of Dayton’s “The Mary Page” on the Internet, and of enough significance that the History Channel has done a series (and now a book) -- “Visions of Mary” -which he called excellent. The fact that there are sparse references in the New Testament makes discussions of Mary complex and open to interpretation, he said. In St. Luke’s Gospel, we see a Mary as “open, intelligent, independent and faithful,” Brother Mark said. “Mary is more than an Old Testament saint,” he added. “She is the first one to hear the Gospel. Mary is the first Christian disciple. ... When she appears at the foot of the cross, she becomes the model for believers.” Father William C. Graham, a priest of the Diocese of Duluth and theology professor at St. Scholastica, pointed out that the church teaches during the liturgy what Mary’s role is. “The Roman Missal is a rich re-
pository for us as we seek to reflect on and understand and teach what is acceptable on Mary.” Father Graham, who also spoke at the first “Mary in Our Day” conference and organized the one at St. Scholastica, gave examples of how the church’s liturgical prayer through the year references A woman prays at the monument of Our Lady of Lebanon in Harissa, Mary and reveals her Lebanon, Aug. 15, marking the feast of the Assumption of Mary. (CNS role as the one who photo/Cynthia Karam, Reuters) brings the Word to flesh. The Annunciation was The emblazoning of Mary’s As a variety of images of Mary one such instance. image on the “tilma,” or cloak, from various artists through “Mary’s honor is in her courageous faith-filled reply to the of St. Juan Diego left a rich the ages came up on a large angel Gabriel,” Father Graham symbol that not only “medi- screen, he made the point that said. “The church’s prayer aims ates a sense of the divine,” she Mary has been envisioned by to shape us in the same faith- said, but in the cloak’s combi- all cultures. nation of Aztec and Catholic “These images serve as filled, joyful trust.” symbols the native peoples openings to the inner life of Mary’s role as the mother of Christ and mother of the “see a future for themselves and God,” he said. “An image of their children.” Mary prompts our memory -church is clear, he added. Our Lady of Guadalupe, it’s shorthand for the faith we “Every feast, every act of devotion to Mary, finds its dignity Pineda-Madrid posited, initi- know,” and it can open for us a in turning our hearts to God,” ates a zeal for mission, crosses door to prayer. racial and ethnic lines, and “Whatever Mary becomes Father Graham said. Boston College theologian continues God’s promise that for the individual Christian, Nancy Pineda-Madrid put for- the presence of the Holy Spirit, whether she is mother of the ward the case that the appari- will continue to be with and church or Our Lady of the Rosary or our refuge and life’s tion of Our Lady of Guadalupe empower the faithful. Brother Charles Hilken, also confidant or simply a reposiin Mexico in 1531 is “an American Pentecost,” a renewal of a Christian Brother and a his- tory of faith, her image defines hope that, like the coming tory professor at St. Mary’s in for us beauty,” Brother Charles of the Holy Spirit both to the California, used images and said. “It is she who shows us apostles after Jesus’ ascension likenesses of Mary to explain the way.” Benedictine Sister Lois Eckes into heaven and continuing to- why she continues to be influsaid Mary is “a woman for our day, the miracle of Guadalupe ential in the 21st century. “Christian faith is one that time, a woman for all seasons.” is an ongoing event. The prioress at the St. SchoPineda-Madrid drew paral- overflows into images,” noted Brother Charles, who was a lastica Monastery added, lels between the dashed hopes of the apostles and the down- curator for the “Vatican Splen- “She’s such a model for our trodden, even suicidal native dors” exhibit that toured the faith, one who helps us know peoples of 16th-century Mex- United States recently. “Chris- that God is in our world in all tian faith wants to express it- this mess.”f ico. self.”
continued from page 1
Local resident Hilda Berkley prays near a painting of Mary breast-feeding the infant Jesus at the Milk Grotto chapel in Bethlehem, West Bank, Dec. 5. The grotto is believed to be a place where Mary fed Jesus as the Holy Family fled to Egypt. Pilgrims, e specially women who want to conceive, have visited the grotto for centuries. (CNS photo/Debbie Hill)
He asked bishops, priests and lay leaders to make sure that their young pilgrims are supported as they return home, so the experience could transform their lives. Before going to the airport, Pope Benedict took time to thank about 12,000 of the 30,000 volunteers from around the world who ensured -- as much as possible -- the smooth functioning of the Aug. 16-21 World Youth Day events. Crowds waving banners and throwing confetti bid the pope farewell as he traveled through the streets of Madrid on the way
to the fairgrounds adjacent to the airport. Upon entry, a crowd of green-shirt-clad volunteers clapped and waved, cheering for the man whose visit they had worked nonstop all week to coordinate. Baby after baby was lifted through the window of the popemobile for a papal kiss as he circled the crowd, smiling and waving. After greeting a handful of volunteers personally, Pope Benedict addressed the entire group, acknowledging “all the effort that went into preparing for these days, all the sacrifices, all the love.” “Everybody did his or her best, by work and prayer, to weave, stitch by stitch, the magnificent,
colorful tapestry of this World Youth Day,” he said. Speaking on behalf of the volunteers, Giselle Azevedo, a 28-yearold from Rio de Janeiro, said they all love God and the church, which led them to dedicate their time and energy “to serve and to help young people from the whole world have the most incredible experience of their lives: a personal encounter with Christ.” And, she said, the young people of Brazil eagerly await the opportunity to welcome young pilgrims to World Youth Day 2013 in Rio. Contributing to this story was Gretchen R. Crowe.
Sunday, August 28, 2011
DEVOTION & SPIRITUALITY
Friends Are Natural Healers Divine Mercy Moments by Fr. Joel De Los Reyes
Who is a true and best friend? Someone who stays with you in times of crisis, someone who remains when everybody else has deserted, someone whom you can confide with your personal issues without fear or doubt, and someone who understands you despite your misgivings and mistakes. We all have friends but among them there’s always one who stands out, or a couple or more whom you can turn to at your beck and call “twenty-four – seven.”. The Holy Bible is rich with insights about friendship especially the Book of Sirach. Here are some quotations to live by in this regard which are so inspiring and uplifting. “ Let your acquaintances be many, but one in a thousand your confidant”. (Sir. 6:6). “ “ A faithful friend is beyond price, no sum can balance his worth”. ( Sir. 6:15). “ A faithful friend is a sturdy shelter, he who finds one, finds a treasure.” ( Sir: 6:14). “ A faithful friend is a life-saving remedy, such as he who fears God finds “. (Sir:6:16). Friends are paracetamols who relieve our heart-aches and heart-breaks, our moral and psychological wounds, our emotional pains and discomfort with their love and care. Recall the moment when you were in your deepest sorrow and grief such as death in the family, loss of property or divorce and how your faithful friend helped carry your cross. What about one of those sleepless
nights when you picked up the phone to urgently call your friend in the middle of the night seeking advice or help and in no time readily attended to you? Friends are antibiotics of stressful and busy life. They diffuse tensions, worries and weariness by their concern and thought of you. They are like pillars supporting the dome of an edifice by their encouragement and wisdom. Sometimes we go through some kind of emotional infection and mental indigestion in the midst of adversity and tragedy in life. When big problems arise, our capacity to find solutions are sometimes impaired leaving us handicapped and helpless. I know of someone who was in deep emotional and psychological recession and depression over mounting bills to settle. But a dear friend’s financial help bailed him out of an imminent personal life disaster. Friends are therapeutic and their effects are lasting. When someone insults you, gives you a hard time or show hostile attitude, don’t recede to self-pity and anger but think of your friends who support you and believe in you. For sure your true friends outnumber the bad apples. True friends rejoice with your success and triumphs, share tears with your pains miseries. True friends tell you who you are even your mistakes, wishing only the best for you. The mere thought that you have friends who share common belief
WHAT DID OUR UNBORN JESUS LOOK LIKE IN HIS BLESSED MOTHER’S WOMB? By Marilu Diaz Martinez
fetal heart (similar to His Blessed Mother’s or an adult’s) is already In this 6th series of the 9-month recorded; now, His circulatory series following of Unborn Jesus’ system is the first body system development in Mother Mary’s (or group of related organs) that womb, we find that He is now 10 achieves a functional stage. inches in length and most of His Unborn Jesus’ heart rate and vital life-support organs and sys- breathing activity begin to follow tems -- his heart and circulatory a daily cycle and rhythm referred system, his lungs, digestion and to as circadian rhythm. It is at this brain -- are now functioning and point that Unborn Jesus and other it’s now a matter of counting down human fetus are considered being the months before birth! at a fetal age of viability, meaning UnbornNovena Jesus can hear that itChapel is at this age that Unborn at His themothCañada er’s heartbeat and some other fun- Jesus or the human fetus’ survival ny noises she makes and even rec- outside the mother’s womb is posognizes her voice; this is because sible. the cochlea -- hearing organ -- has …but God allows Jesus to wait reached adult size inside the fully out the 36 or 38 weeks in the womb developed ear and will respond to of His Blessed Mother before being a much wider and growing range of born -- just as most of us do in our sounds. mother’s womb The umbilical cord where He gets “When Mary visited her cousin His food transports 300 quarts Elizabeth, Mary spoke the longest of fluid per day and completes a of her recorded words which gave round-trip of fluids every 30 sec- vent to the thoughts pent up in her onds -- what a really awesome and heart. She at once closes the door marvelous engineering of God! against any praise given to herself: In His 5th month and entering “My soul doth magnify the Lord.” 23 weeks in the womb, Unborn Je- He it is Whom we must praise and sus’ bronchial tree is now nearly make much of; “and my spirit hath complete and He gains the ability rejoiced in God my Savior.” to breath air on His own. Mary understands what it is that At 3 weeks and 1 day after con- is making her so full of joy. It is the ception or fertilization, Unborn presence of Jesus her Savior. She Jesus’ heart started beating, and at has Him within her…” 7 ½ weeks electrical activity of His
and interest builds up self- confidence and bolster your morale. If you have a best friend who stands by you through thick and thin in all seasons of your life, there’s someone better who will stand by you through the thickest and thinnest seasons of your life and who will be your “BFF” ( best friend forever); his name is Jesus, a simple Son of a poor carpenter from Nazareth. He said;” I call you friends not slaves, for a slave does not know what his master is all about, but I call you friends because I’ve made known to you what I have learned from My Father.” We say in the Cursillo, “Make a friend, be a friend, and bring a friend to Christ”. Yes, friends are precious and priceless and not for sale, they are the best gifts from Someone up there. Yes, friends are natural healers and let’s keep them in our medical kit. Amen on that folks!!! In her Diary entry no. St. Faustina wrote Jesus’ words; “ With no other soul do I unite Myself as closely and in such a way as I do with you, and this because of the deep humility and ardent love which you have for Me.” Tune in to KOLG for the Divine Mercy prayer at 3 p.m. daily. Recite the Chaplet of Mercy everyday for peace in the world and conversion of sinners. Thanks to Misula for the presentation and
veneration of the sacred relic of St. Faustina in their home in Dededo last Sunday afternoon, August 21, 2001.To the Divine Mercy prayer team for your faithfulness in our Sunday afternoon Divine Mercy home apostolate and to the participants of the Divine Mercy Symposium last Saturday at St. Anthony Church spiritual center last Saturday, August 20, 2011. May the good Lord bless you and your families with the abundance of His grace and mercy. To arrange for Divine Mercy home presentation, prayer and veneration of the sacred relic of St. Faustina, please contact Amy Borja at 472-7778. Thank you. PILGRIMAGE; I will be leading the Guam Divine Mercy pilgrimage to Lourdes, Nevers, see the incorrupt body of St. Bernadette, visit the Miraculous Medal Shrine in Paris, see the incorrupt body of St. Catherine Labore, to Lissieux, vist the house of St. Therese of Lisieux, to Tolouse, Nice, Geneva, Zurich, Lucerne, Switzerland, Infant of Prague, Czechoslovakia, Vienna, Austria, Shrine of the Divine Mercy in Poland, Our lady of the Black Madonna, House of Blessed John Paul 11 and many more. Final registration will be this week. For more information, please call Ann Marie of Pactours at 649-3221, Lou Salas at 477-8079, or Fr. Joel at 483-9464. Thank you.
SAN RAMON FIESTA Patron Saint for childbirth; children; expectant mothers, fasely accused people; fever; infants; midwives; newborn babies; obstetricians; and pregnant women
Schedule Fri. 8/26 Sat. 8/27 Sun. 8/28 Mon. 8/29 - Fri. 9/2
Novena 6:00 pm 6:00 pm 6:00 pm 6:00 pm
On the day of the Fiesta on Saturday, September 3, the Novena will be at 3:45 pm, followed by the mass at 4:30 pm. The procession and Na Taotao Tumano will follow.
Please join us!
BIBA SAN RAMON San Vicente/San Roke Church, Barrigada
Sunday, August 28, 2011
I’M JUST SAYING
JEFFREY L. FITZGERALD
“Vikings, Casinos, and the Legacy of Bob Saget”
You might remember that in the early 1990s, a book came out called “Chicken Soup for the Soul.” Wildly popular, readers went en masse to their local bookstores to buy this heart-warming tome, and Oprah exulted in its insights. It didn’t take long for the publishers to hit upon the notion of tailoring this book for various markets. Kids. Pet lovers. Golfers. Housewives. College students. Convicted felons. Millions Me if I were upon millions were sold, on a “Beowulf” and readers delighted in movie poster its message of healing and forgiveness. So I got this idea one night when I was in the Marines while on duty at 4 a.m. As a platoon sergeant, I figured it might be nice to come up with a “Chicken Soup” idea that would motivate my Marines—something like a feel-good reflection for warriors. Sensing that tailoring a book for Arabic translators called “How to Use Your God-Given Language Talents to Kill People for Your Government” was probably not suitable for moral edification, I struck upon the idea of “Chicken Soup for the Viking Soul.” Think of it: I could put a story in there about Olaf, a young man going on his first raiding party. Insecure about pleasing his dad Sven, he returns after a long week of bloodshed, looting, and mayhem, only to find that his dad was proud of his son all along, but he didn’t want to spoil him. “Yes, son—I remember the first time I slaughtered a whole village…” dear ol’ dad would say with a tear in his eye. This topic came up in conversation shortly after I brainstormed this inspired notion, and most of my corporals reacted with a gentle shaking of the head and that “Well, that’s just Fitz” sort of look. My commanding officer—a major who was a decidedly humorless man and particularly contemptuous of enlisted men in general—was not amused. “What is wrong with you, Fitzgerald? That’s not what the book series is about! How dare you mock something that promotes peace in the family? You
think you’re superior? What are you, a snob?” [NOTE: His phrasing was rather more colorful than what I’ve indicated, but you get the gist.] But that’s the funny thing about bad ideas: they always start off as good ideas. At least they seem like good ideas at the time. After all, no one ever knowingly does something they know to be profoundly stupid. They do it—even if it is bad idea or morally wicked—precisely because they see some good in it. Aristotle begins his Nicomachean Ethics talking about this truth. We do things because the perceived good of performing an act seems at the time to outweigh the bad of the act or its results. Take a burglar (something a lot of us on Guam know something about). This thief knows stealing is wrong, but the perceived good of taking your stuff outweighs the evil of theft, at least to his way of thinking. That doesn’t excuse him, of course. The point is that bad ideas always start out as seeming like good ideas when we think of them. This of course explains half the movies pumped out of Hollywood. I am convinced that movie producers in southern California are about as original as bands named after band members (think Van Halen, Bon Jovi, Winger, Nelson, or that paragon of banality called Hansen). Hence, lacking any artistry, integrity, or intelligence while still intent on turning a profit, producers figure it’s a good idea to make movies based on TV shows that were popular. Not so fast, there, bubba. More often than not, these movies don’t make Dime One. Nor should they. The mother of all cinematic adaptation disappointments has to be 1994’s The Flintstones starring John Goodman. This movie was so tragically awful that even has-been actors like Corey Feldman must have been like, “No, really. That’s ok. I’m fine with my job washing dishes at Larry’s Diner.” On a quasi-related note, rumor has it that Seth MacFarlane (the creator of Family Guy and American Dad) plans on doing his own adaptation of The Flintstones for the movie screen. While it’s conceivable that this project will result in a family-friendly TV run on
Aug. 29 The Beheading of John the Baptist Mon Aug. 30 St. Margaret Middleton Tue Clitherow* Aug. 31 St. Aidan* Wed Sep. 1 Thu
Sep. 2 Fri
Blessed John Francis Burté and Companions*
Sep. 3 Sat
Pope St. Gregory the Great
Sep. 4 Sun
23rd Sunday of Ordinary Time
* denoted saint memorials not commonly celebrated on Guam
Disney Channel one day, I have the feeling that it will be so off the rails that anyone who watches it will need to say a novena to St. Michael just to remove the spiritual stink that will cling. Thankfully, even Hollywood producers can occasionally recognize a bad idea when they see it. This of course explains why there has never been a movie adaptation of the TV show Full House. I’m not sure the natural order of the cosmos can bear the strain of Bob Saget doing a full two-hour movie as America’s favorite laugh-track dad. Speaking of ill-conceived notions, there was a petition online a few years ago calling for Bob Saget’s arrest and execution for crimes against humanity. His offense? Starring on Full House. I honestly couldn’t make this stuff up. So what possesses us to think up these lame-brain ideas that are intrinsically inane, yet seem so common-sensical at the time? I’m not entirely sure on this, but I think it’s called “being human.” St. Thomas Aquinas follows St. Augustine and the rest of the Tradition in noting that the fact that human beings are capable of bad judgment is part of what makes us forgivable. Put another way, human beings recognize their choices by means of their intellect, and they choose their course of action from among these choices by means of their will. Because we sometimes don’t recognize all the available choices with our intellects (and the will—although a rational faculty—often enough chooses the short-term perceived good instead of what is truly good), we make really poor choices— particularly moral choices. Just ask Adam and Eve. Not exactly humanity’s finest moment. That goes with human nature. It’s how we roll, I guess. But the good news is that’s also what makes repentance possible. Our Blessed Lord knows that we don’t really get it, and (to Aquinas’ way of thinking) that’s why there can be a certain “forgivability,” if you will, when it comes to us. He doesn’t have to forgive us, of course, and we sure don’t deserve it. But our lack of foresight—our limitation—gives us a certain lee-way in the eyes of the Lord (that we should never, ever take for granted, I might
Looking Ahead St. John the Baptist’s birth and death are both celebrated with feasts—the only saint on the Church’s calendar to have both commemorated. Called by the Lord Jesus the greatest man ever born, his life as a prophet was focused on the proclamation of the Messiah as the fulfillment of prophesy, thereby making him obsolete. After St. John’s arrest and languishing in prison until King Herod’s stepdaughter trapped the king with a request to behead the saint. Born in York, England shortly after England broke from the Church of Rome, St. Margaret was married at age 15 and became Catholic at 18. She was put in prison for not attending Protestant services, and upon her release ran a school for her neighbors’ and her own children. Although her husband remained Protestant, he supported her decision to hide Catholic priests in their home at a time when this was illegal. At the age of 30, the hiding place was discovered. Refusing
add). Aquinas adds that angels don’t know things quite the way we know with these two rational faculties (especially the intellect). They simply know, and they see quite clearly all the implications of their free choices in a way befitting their place in Creation and quite impossible to humans. That, by the way, is why the fallen angels can’t be forgiven. They knew full well what they were doing, and they aren’t capable of repentance. Repentance is particular to humans alone, and regret flows from not seeing all the consequences.. It might sound odd, but Aquinas makes a sound theological argument here based on the Tradition before him. Beautiful. Still, though, I have yet to hear the explanation for practical jokes that are bad ideas. In 2002, the National Catholic Educational Association held its annual convention in that East Coast gambling Mecca called Atlantic City, NJ of all places (probably not a good idea). All of us who taught at our Catholic school in San Antonio stayed at a hotel-casino owned by Donald Trump (an even worse idea). Me being me, and boredom being what it is, I devised a plan to take the driver’s license of David, our barely 5-foot tall Hispanic PE teacher, glue my blond haired and blue-eyed picture over his, re-laminate the license, and return it to his wallet. While I thought the idea had comedic merit since he would have to show ID every time he used his credit card— thereby creating chaos in his otherwise goofy life—the computer teacher Mr. Peak assured me that my sense of humor was predisposing me to getting myself in trouble (not to mention everyone else). I later attempted to compromise with the suggestion that we write “Thug Life” on David’s forehead with a Sharpee permanent black marker while he was sleeping, but that too was over-ruled. Such as it is. It’s a world of monumentally boneheaded ideas, and most of the time, I feel like the human equivalent of a dog chasing its tail. Thankfully, the Sacred Heart of Jesus is loving enough to keep me even closer to Him—just to keep from me from hurting myself too much with my ideas. Good thinking, Lord.
to plead, she could not be tried. She was crushed to death with a heavy stone on March 25, 1586. St. Aidan lived in the 7th Century and is regarded as the great evangelizer of Northumberland, the northeasternmost county in England on the border with Scotland. Born in Ireland, St. Aidan was sent to assist King Oswald in the evangelization of his kingdom. He was known for his poverty, simplicity, prayer, and devotion to the Scriptures. After founding numerous churches and monasteries, he died in 651. St. Giles is believed to have been a noble, 7th Century Athenian. Renowned for his piety and holiness by the people of his country, he left Greece and traveled to France, eventually settling in the Diocese of Nimes. Living as a hermit, he gained fame for his miracles and remarkable holiness—eventually taking disciples. The patron saint of the physically disabled, he died about the year 724. Blessed John Francis Burté and his Companions were victims of the French Revolution. During the Revolution, after the Civil Constitution of the Clergy was
Send your ideas so stupid that they make me look smart to firstname.lastname@example.org.
passed, all clergy were required to take an oath that denied the Faith. Blessed John and more than 200 bishops, priests, and religious—many of whom were Franciscans—refused to take this oath and were imprisoned in a Carmelite monastery. Most were slaughtered at the Carmelite house in Paris on September 2, 1792. Pope St. Gregory the Great was born in Rome and descended from a Roman aristocratic family. Elected Pope in 590 AD (and the first monk to be so elected), he reformed Church administration and devoted funds to assisting the poor and the ransoming of prisoners. He worked for evangelization in Europe, particularly by sending St. Augustine of Canterbury (not to be confused with St. Augustine of Hippo, of The Confessions fame) to England with other monks. He also wrote extensively on pastoral care, morals, and spirituality. Actively involved in liturgical reform, Gregorian chant is named after him. Because he died on March 12—a date that always falls in Lent—his feast day is celebrated on the date of his election to the Papacy. He died in 604.