Friday, October 24, 2008

Virtual Tour of the Holy Land

For someone like me who has not been to the Holy Land, this site was wonderful.

It takes you through the various stages of Jesus’ life, and has pictures of what those areas look like today.

If any of you know of any other sites like this, please feel free to share!

God Bless.

Thursday, October 23, 2008

Abortion as a Campaign Issue

If you are like me, you have probably asked yourself at one time or another, “How should Catholics evaluate a candidate?”

After all, I’ve yet to see a candidate that embodied all of the qualities and views I would want. So how are we to know which issues are most important?

The Catholic Key published a very good article written by Bishop Finn (Diocese of KC), which you can read here. The article focuses on abortion as the most important issue and how Catholics, by choosing a pro-choice candidate, are “put[ing] aside their conscience on this life and death issue.”

There have also been various groups that argue that there are more issues to think about than just abortion - distribution of wealth and caring for the poor for example. They argue that those issues are just as important as abortion, and represent other important areas of our faith.

After much thinking, and after hearing an excellent homily in my own church a week ago, the priority is much clearer for me. Life has to come before any other social or economic issues. Lower taxes, a better healthcare system, more jobs … none of them matter if a person is not given the chance to live.

I’m sure if you were given the choice between being alive and paying higher taxes, or being dead and having low taxes (or even no taxes!) you would chose life.

Everyone should get to make that choice for themselves.

Now, if only I could find that perfect candidate before November 4th …

God Bless

Friday, October 10, 2008

My iPod, a Gentle Push from God?

“This year I’m going to start reading the bible.”

That was my mantra year after year. And year after year, I failed to do so. I can’t even come up with a good reason - other than the obvious one. I just didn’t set aside time to do it. I had every intention to do so. Really I did. But I just couldn’t find the time to make it a daily event. (I’m embarrassed to even admit that)

But sometimes God gives us the little push we need to get our priorities straight. In this instance, his push came in the form of an iPod.

That’s right. A shiny, new, sleek iPod. Perfect for storing thousands of songs, and, as I would come to discover, hundreds of podcasts. Initially, I downloaded all sorts of news podcasts so that I could keep up with the world while I drove to and from work.

But then one day, I found the Daily Audio Bible, which is a fantastic podcast run by a gentleman named Brian Hardin. Each day he reads from the Old Testament, New Testament, Psalms, and Proverbs, and then gives some brief commentary and inspirational words. I’ve listened to about 120 days worth (which equals about 1/3 of the bible) in the morning on my way to work, and so far and it has been life changing. I see my faith in a new light. I see the world in a new light. And I see myself in a new light.

I am finally making good on my promise to myself.

For those of you that are interested, here is the link to the site, or you can download it on iTunes like I did.

I’ll end this post with a HUGE thank you to Brian and the team at the Daily Audio Bible. Keep up the great work and may God bless you all.