Friday, January 2, 2015

The 9th Day of Christmas - Hark the Herald Angels Sing & Favorites From 2014

Merry Christmas!  Today is the 9th day of Christmas, and the Memorial of two Doctors of the Church, St. Basil the Great and St. Gregory Nazianzen.  It is also the first day of the Christmas Season that is not a Solemnity, but don’t let that get you down; I’ve included a rousing version of “Hark, the Herald Angels Sing” below.  After that, for those who are interested, are my “Baker’s Dozen” of favorite posts from 2014.  Oh, and have a Happy New Year!

As a farewell to my first year of bloggery, here are a selection of thirteen posts from 2014, a “Baker’s Dozen”, if you will, of pieces that I thought might be of interest:

“Where have all the fathers gone . . ."   [here] My first foray into a favorite theme: the vital importance of fathers, and the baleful effects of the decline of fatherhood.

“In Mother Jones, Of All Places” Some interesting conclusions about the causes of poverty from an unexpected source.  [here]

“Fr. Ratzinger’s Prediction Of A “Smaller, Purer Church”  Theology professor Joseph Ratzinger saw the Signs of the Times way back in 1969.  [here]

“Traditional Marriage: The Liberty Argument”  In which, in response to the short-sighted (to me, anyway) arguments of some libertarians,  I make the case that government redefinition of marriage does not promote liberty, but is rather a step toward totalitarianism. [here]

“Dressing For The Wedding Feast Of The Lamb” Why it is important to put on our Sunday Best. This seems to be a Hot Topic, based on the response this post received last summer.  [here]

“Love And Marriage”  [here] I had actually forgotten about this piece until I started compiling this list; it’s fairly succinct (for me) discussion of the societal benefits of marriage, and why the Church’s teaching is motivated by Love.

“St. Bridget of Sweden, Patroness Of Successful Failures”   [here] I write about the Saints fairly often, sometimes the heavy hitters, sometimes more obscure Heroes of the Faith.  St. Bridget of Sweden is certainly not obscure, but not particularly well-known today, either.  As is often the way with Saints, her story has some surprises for us.

“Why would you want Satan as a mascot?” [here] I’ve never looked at those cute little cartoon devils the same way after a random comment by a high school student more than twenty years ago. 

“Peace, Baby!”  [here] Why is it that the Sign of Peace causes so much discord?

“It Is A Fearful Thing When Man Sets His Will Against The Will Of God” [here] The arguments of Bishop Clemens August Von Galen against the Nazi euthanasia program are worth rereading, in light of what is happening today.

“St. Therese of Lisieux, Spiritual Warrior” [here] Another Saints posting, in which I compare St. Therese to Soldier-turned-Saint Ignatius of Loyola; includes cool picture of The Little Flower dressed as St. Joan of Arc.

 “Our Pre-Cana Adventure”[here] This is the revision of one of my earliest pieces, about what happens when a Catholic couple tries to discuss Catholic teaching on marriage in a Catholic parish to couples preparing to marry in the Catholic Church.  Can you guess where this is going?

“Amy Or Dawkins?” [here] A beautiful young woman with Downs Syndrome versus the Dark Angel of Atheism.