March 24, 2019

Sunday (Moderated) Open Thread (032419)

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Positivity: Seven 20th-century Romanian bishops declared martyrs

Filed under: Positivity — Tom @ 5:55 am

From Vatican City:

Mar 19, 2019 / 12:01 pm

Pope Francis declared Tuesday the martyrdom of seven Greek-Catholic bishops killed by the communist regime in Romania in the mid-20th century.

Bishops Valeriu Traian Frentiu, Vasile Aftenie, Ioan Suciu, Tito Livio Chinezu, Ioan Balan, Alexandru Rusu, and Iuliu Hossu were declared to have been killed “in hatred of the faith” between 1950 and 1970, during the Soviet occupation of Romania and the rule of Nicolae Ceausescu.

Each of the bishops was arrested and held in prisons and camps until he died, often from isolation, cold, hunger, disease, or hard manual labor. Most were never tried or convicted and were buried in unmarked graves, without religious services.

A year before his death, Bishop Iuliu Hossu was named a cardinal “in pectore.” After spending years in isolation, he died in a hospital in Bucharest in 1970. His last words were: “My struggle is over, yours continues.”

In addition to imprisonment and isolation, Bishop Vasile Aftenie was tortured at the Interior Ministry, later dying from his wounds May 10, 1950.

After meeting March 19 with Cardinal Angelo Becciu, prefect of the Congregation for the Causes of Saints, Pope Francis gave his approval for the publication of the decrees of martyrdom of the seven bishops, and of another seven people on the path to sainthood.

The pope approved a miracle attributed to the intercession of Maria Emilia Riquelme y Zayas, foundress of the Congregation of Missionary Sisters of the Most Holy Sacrament and the Blessed Immaculate Virgin Mary (1847-1940), who will now be called ‘blessed.’

He also recognized the martyrdom of Italian missionary Alfredo Cremonesi, a religious priest of the Pontifical Institute for External Missionaries, who was born in Italy and killed in Burma in 1953. …

Go here for the rest of the story.

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March 23, 2019

Saturday (Moderated) Open Thread (032319)

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Positivity: Tony Perkins — ‘The landscape is shifting — and fast.’

Filed under: Life-Based News,Positivity,Taxes & Government — Tom @ 5:55 am

In a column published at Life News:

MAR 19, 2019, 10:56AM

New Mexico’s bill was supposed to be a slam dunk. But after New York, nothing on abortion is a sure thing — not anymore. In a country that saw a 17-point jump in the number of pro-lifers since January, it’s no wonder that state Democrats are taking a good hard look at their positions, especially on late-term abortion. Americans have changed — and it looks like smart politicians are changing with them.

No one was more surprised by Thursday night’s vote than Governor (and abortion extremist) Michelle Lujan Grisham (D). After the House had sent the bill on with a 40-29 vote, the Democrats’ stranglehold on the Senate was supposed to mean that the New York-style H.B. 51 was a done deal. But despite the party’s 26-16 edge, the vote fell far from party lines. In a stunning victory for pro-lifers, eight Democrats crossed over — killing a bill that would have legalized infanticide and given abortionists the right to destroy babies up to the moment of birth.

Governor Grisham, who hadn’t counted on the intense lobbying from pastors and state conservatives, was astounded. “That… it was even a debate, much less a difficult vote for some senators, is inexplicable to me,” she told reporters. By a 24-18 tally, Democratic Senators Pete Campos, Carlos Cisneros, Richard Martinez, George Muñoz, Senate President Pro Tem Mary Kay Papen, Ramos, Clemente “Meme” Sanchez, and John Arthur Smith proved what a complicated issue abortion is becoming — even in liberal states.

During an emotional debate, some Democrats struggled to come up with a reason why New Mexico should leave perfectly healthy babies on a hospital table to die. Senator Ramos of Silver City told his chamber, “This is one of the toughest decisions any of us will ever have to make.” But, he went on, “I stand unified against legislation that weakens the defense of life and threatens the dignity of the human being.” While others sometimes spoke through tears, the tension inside the Democratic caucus was obvious.

In one strained exchange, two Democrats squared off against each other. Senator Jerry Ortiz y Pino of Albuquerque quoted St. Antoninus to justify why Catholics should feel free to vote for the bill. “The importance of individual choice is what the church has always taught,” he said. Senator Ramos demanded to know which Catholic Church he was talking about. “Mine does not approve of abortion,” Ramos said. Then, to his colleagues he said simply, “Vote your conscience.”

Thank goodness many did. Their courage dealt one of the most significant blows of the year to the extreme abortion camp. When she was asked, one dazed senator could only say, “We did expect more to be voting in favor — and it didn’t turn out that way.” Deep blue states like Maryland and Virginia share her surprise. There, similar proposals have been shelved because of the intense divides on late-term abortion. Even in Illinois, whose governor is vying to be the “pro-abortion state in the union,” a New York-style measure stalled after four cosponsors asked to be removed from the bill.

The landscape is shifting — and fast. …

Go here for the rest of Perkins’ column.

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March 22, 2019

Friday (Moderated) Open Thread (032219)

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Positivity: 91 Babies Saved From Abortion During 40 Days for Life Prayer Campaign, So Far

Filed under: Life-Based News,Positivity — Tom @ 5:55 am

From Washington, via Life News:

MAR 18, 2019, 9:30AM

Today we know of 91 babies saved from abortion by YOUR prayers since March 6…and the fate of one of those children was left to chance.

“One couple stood out,” said Tina, who volunteers for the 40 Days for Life campaign in Forest Park, Georgia. “They were playing ‘Rock, Paper, Scissors.’”

“They must have made an agreement that if one of them won, they should go in [for an abortion],” Tina continued. “But if the other person won, they would walk away. It was apparent that one of the two wasn’t happy with the results because they played the game repeatedly.

Finally, the couple walked over to the local pregnancy center. But it was closed!

“Praying all the way, I approached them and asked if they wanted to speak with someone inside the pregnancy clinic,” Tina said.

They did. …

Go here for the rest of the story.

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March 21, 2019

Thursday (Moderated) Open Thread (032119)

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Positivity: Packed Theater Gives “Unplanned” Movie Standing Ovation After Glitzy Hollywood Premier

Filed under: Life-Based News,Positivity — Tom @ 5:55 am

From Hollywood, via Life News:

MAR 19, 2019, 3:47PM

Hollywood got a deeper, first-person look inside the abortion industry Monday night during the premier of the film “Unplanned.”

The film is based on the true story of Planned Parenthood director-turned pro-life advocate Abby Johnson. It comes out in theaters nation-wide on March 29.

Attendees described a packed theater Monday at the TCL Chinese Theatre in Los Angeles where celebrities like singer Joy Villa, pro-life leaders including Lila Rose and Johnson herself, and conservative entrepreneur Mike Lindell had the opportunity to watch the film for the first time.

Some said they were moved to tears by the film as it depicted Johnson’s struggles through two abortions, her work at Planned Parenthood and her decision to leave and become pro-life.

The premier concluded with a standing ovation. …

…  At least 1,000 theaters are slated to screen the film starting March 29. The film is rated “R” but a group of conservative leaders are contesting the rating.

Visit UnplannedFilm.com for more details.

Go here for the full story.

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March 20, 2019

Wednesday (Moderated) Open Thread (032019)

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Positivity: Directors speak of ‘spiritual warfare’ while making pro-life film

Filed under: Life-Based News,Positivity — Tom @ 5:55 am

From Los Angeles:

Mar 19, 2019 / 01:00 pm

The writers and co-directors of the upcoming film “Unplanned” have spoken of how they prepared for a “spiritual battle” to make the pro-life film in the hopes that it will change hearts and minds through it groundbreaking depiction of the abortion process.

“We, from the beginning, knew that it would be spiritual battle, spiritual warfare. It was prophesied over us that this is not a normal movie,” co-director Cary Solomon told CNA in an interview following a screening for press on March 18.

“Unplanned” dramatizes the truth-life account of Planned Parenthood clinic director Abby Johnson’s decision to leave the organization and become a pro-life campaigner.

Solomon and co-director Chuck Konzelman told CNA that they arranged for a priest to exorcise the set, and bless the cast and props.

“We tried to do Mass and adoration as much as we could,” said Solomon. For the Evangelical Christians involved in making the film, similar spiritual guidance was offered.

Despite anticipating the usual stresses of the production process, Konzelman and Solomon told CNA that they found “profound moments of tremendous peace” on set, which is atypical of the movie-making industry.

“It was amazing. We didn’t have any problems that you would normally have on a movie,” said Solomon. Konzelman agreed, and added that the set of “Unplanned” was “the calmest set [he’s] ever been on.”

“There was no screaming, there was no tension–the average day would have no incident,” said Konzelman. “That’s just not normal in filmmaking.” …

Go here for the rest of the story.

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March 19, 2019

Tuesday (Moderated) Open Thread (031919)

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March 18, 2019

Monday (Moderated) Open Thread (031819)

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Positivity: 31 Babies Saved From Abortion During First Week of 40 Days for Life Prayer Campaign

Filed under: Life-Based News,Positivity — Tom @ 5:55 am

From Washington:

MAR 11, 2019, 10:09AM

On a rainy Memphis day, an abortion-bound couple refused assistance from a trained sidewalk counselor named Tara. But before long, the man exited Planned Parenthood, offering to help shield vigil participants’ materials from the rain.

Was he really that concerned about keeping some pro-life brochures dry? Or was he hoping to have his mind changed about abortion?
Either way, Tara gladly used the opportunity to tell him all about the support available to help the couple choose life. The man said he would try to change the woman’s mind, but when a half hour passed, hope began to fade.

Finally, they emerged from Planned Parenthood and announced they had decided against abortion!

By this point, Tara had been relieved by a new sidewalk counselor named Bethany (second from right in the photo above). On her very FIRST week of sidewalk counseling, she walked the couple over to the pregnancy center and was even invited to see the ultrasound.

“Praise Jesus!” Jessie, the Memphis leader, said. “Suddenly, the rain doesn’t seem so bad!” …

Go here for two other success stories.

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March 17, 2019

Sunday (Moderated) Open Thread (031719)

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Positivity: The Story of St. Patrick

Filed under: Positivity — Tom @ 5:55 am

This post is a BizzyBlog tradition.

_______________________________________________________

The saint who is supposed to be the reason for all the merrymaking today was the man who converted an entire island country to Catholicism:

St. Patrick of Ireland is one of the world’s most popular saints.

Apostle of Ireland, born at Kilpatrick, near Dumbarton, in Scotland, in the year 387; died at Saul, Downpatrick, Ireland, 17 March, 461.

Along with St. Nicholas and St. Valentine, the secular world shares our love of these saints. This is also a day when everyone’s Irish.

There are many legends and stories of St. Patrick, but this is his story.

Patrick was born around 385 in Scotland, probably Kilpatrick. His parents were Calpurnius and Conchessa, who were Romans living in Britian in charge of the colonies.

As a boy of fourteen or so, he was captured during a raiding party and taken to Ireland as a slave to herd and tend sheep. Ireland at this time was a land of Druids and pagans. He learned the language and practices of the people who held him.

During his captivity, he turned to God in prayer. He wrote

“The love of God and his fear grew in me more and more, as did the faith, and my soul was rosed, so that, in a single day, I have said as many as a hundred prayers and in the night, nearly the same.” “I prayed in the woods and on the mountain, even before dawn. I felt no hurt from the snow or ice or rain.”

Patrick’s captivity lasted until he was twenty, when he escaped after having a dream from God in which he was told to leave Ireland by going to the coast. There he found some sailors who took him back to Britian, where he reunited with his family.

He had another dream in which the people of Ireland were calling out to him “We beg you, holy youth, to come and walk among us once more.”

He began his studies for the priesthood. He was ordained by St. Germanus, the Bishop of Auxerre, whom he had studied under for years.

Later, Patrick was ordained a bishop, and was sent to take the Gospel to Ireland. He arrived in IrelandMarch 25, 433, at Slane. One legend says that he met a chieftain of one of the tribes, who tried to kill Patrick. Patrick converted Dichu (the chieftain) after he was unable to move his arm until he became friendly to Patrick.

Patrick began preaching the Gospel throughout Ireland, converting many. He and his disciples preached and converted thousands and began building churches all over the country. Kings, their families, and entire kingdoms converted to Christianity when hearing Patrick’s message.

Patrick by now had many disciples, among them Beningnus, Auxilius, Iserninus, and Fiaac, (all later canonized as well).

Patrick preached and converted all of Ireland for 40 years. He worked many miracles and wrote of his love for God in Confessions. After years of living in poverty, traveling and enduring much suffering he died March 17, 461.

He died at Saul, where he had built the first church.

Why a shamrock?

Patrick used the shamrock to explain the Trinity, and has been associated with him and the Irish since that time.

In His Footsteps:

Patrick was a humble, pious, gentle man, whose love and total devotion to and trust in God should be a shining example to each of us. He feared nothing, not even death, so complete was his trust in God, and of the importance of his mission.

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