Monday, September 22, 2014

Does the Terry Fox Foundation Support Embryonic Stem Cell Research?

Every year, my kids come home with requests to raise money for the Terry Fox run.

I re-verify this year.

This year's answer is: yes, they do.

As evidence, this application for research funds, from their website:

Human Embryonic Stem Cell Research. Applicants are required to approach TFRI before submitting an application for support of research including human embryonic stem cells. TFRI endorses the guidelines set forward by the Canadian Institutes of Health Research ‘Human Pluripotent Stem Cell Research (June 30, 2010)

I think Catholic schools should break off their relationship with this entity.

About the Liberal Party's Abortion Resolution: A Clarification


Liberal officials say Trudeau was simply voicing the firm ideal they've held since a 2012 policy convention, at which 90 per cent of those present affirmed the party's pro-choice stance.

Some important background information.

Only 584 of 3200 delegates voted for the motion a to support abortion.

90% of delegates did not vote for it.

Just thought I'd put forward that clarification.

Sunday, September 21, 2014

QUOTATION: Why Souls Go to Hell

Souls go to hell for one reason...they refuse to love. Love pardons everything except one thing - refusal to love.

--Archbishop Fulton J. Sheen

Taken from The Catholic Breadbox.

Friday, September 19, 2014

QUOTATION: Love in Hell

St. Peter Julian Eymard
Alas! it is love that lights and feeds the fire of the damned, and their most cutting regret is for not having loved.

--St. Peter Julian Eymard

Taken from The Catholic Breadbox.

Thursday, September 18, 2014

UK: Young Muslims Start Campaign to Denounce ISIS

One said that Muslims should "unite together to stop this group from damaging Islam and damaging Muslims."

When the Muslim World sends troops and arms to defeat these people, then I will know they are serious about being part of the civilized world.

ISIS can build a sophisticated army from recruits from around the world,  but 57 Muslim countries can't beat them?

Muslims Not the Only Persecutors of Christians: Hindus Drive Out Christians in India

Ecumenical News: 
Christian Headlines reported that Indian village councils have passed new laws making Christian prayer, meetings, and evangelism illegal in 50 towns. 
"In some places, the passing of the resolution has been followed by attacks on pastors and pulling down of village churches," said Aneesh Andrews, a Methodist district superintendent.

South Africa: "Open Mosque" Welcomes Non-Muslims, Gays

Women to lead prayers.

I thought this took some guts.

Indeed, the founded has been sent death threats.

He is quoted as saying:

"We have a theological mafia that controls the Muslim community - bamboozles them, brainwashes them, indoctrinates them - and that they follow without question. And it's this type of unquestioning mind-set that leads to the growth of extremism, radicalism and fanaticism," said Hargey.

I don't agree with religious liberalism, but I prefer it to a religion that requires apostates to be killed.

I suspect, though, that this mosque will turn into the Islamic version of the United Church. When you sap revelation of its supernatural and inerrant status, there's hardly any point of going to Church. You can be liberal at home.

In any case, I hope it does help de-radicalize Islam.

Wednesday, September 17, 2014

The Demotion of Cardinal Raymond Burke: The Silver Lining

Cardinal Raymond Burke

This piece of news hit Catholic social media like a bombshell.

Fr Z:

If this happens – and it is still not official yet – Card. Burke will not have so much on his plate. He is still young enough to have a good store of energy. This move, if true, would mean that he would not be tethered to a desk full of nearly as much paperwork. He will have more time to write. He will have more opportunities to raise his voice and express his views. He is already pretty forthright as a Prefect. When he is off the leash, he will still act with the Romanitas and the gravitas of a Cardinal, but I’ll bet he’ll be even more vocal.

Another upside? He will probably retain his membership in the Congregations to which he belongs. Those appointments change from time to time. We shall see.

In case you're wondering.

I don't really care about liturgy wars. I know he's pro-Latin Mass, but that's not what I like Cardinal Burke.

I like him because he tells it straight.

QUOTATION: Getting to Know God

Archbishop Fulton J. Sheen
If you want to know about God, there is only one way to do it: get down on your knees. You can make His acquaintance by investigation, but you can win His love only by loving. Most people who deny God do not do so because their reason tells them there is no God, for how could reason witness against Reason? Their denial is rather because of wishful thinking. They feel they would be happier if there were no God, for then they could do as they pleased. Think a little less about whether you deserve to be loved by Him; He loves you even though you are not deserving. It is His love alone that will make you deserving. Most of us are unhappy because we never give God a chance to love us; we are in love only with ourselves.

--Archbishop Fulton J. Sheen, A Preface to Religion

Taken from The Catholic Breadbox.

Tuesday, September 16, 2014

New Jersey Nun to Be Beatified Next Month

I had no idea:

But soon the state may also be known as home of the latest American saint, a Bayonne-born nun who is to be beatified in Newark next month.

The beatification of Sister Miriam Teresa Demjanovich, who died in 1927 at the age of 26, puts her one step away from formal canonization.

If Demjanovich does make the final hurdle, she would become just the second person born in the U.S. ever to be named a saint, and it would give New Jersey something to brag about — albeit humbly, no doubt.

Wikipedia has the story of her life.

She was a Ruthenian-Byzantine Catholic but served in a Latin-Rite community.

Why is she considered for beatification?
Because of her saintly life, her striving for perfection in her religious life, her spiritual writings, the mystical privileges accorded her by God during life and the favors received by others after her death through her intercession with God, the Sisters of Charity petitioned Rome for permission to open her Cause for Beatification and Canonization.

Guttmacher Study Examines Client Response to Ultrasound Before Abortion

Time for another abstract:


In the United States, abortion opponents have supported legislation requiring that abortion patients be offered the opportunity to view their preprocedure ultrasound. Little research has examined women's interest in and emotional response to such viewing.


Data from 702 women who received abortions at 30 facilities throughout the United States between 2008 and 2010 were analyzed. Mixed-effects multinomial logistic regression analysis was used to determine which characteristics were associated with being offered and choosing to view ultrasounds, and with reporting positive or negative emotional responses to viewing. Grounded theory analytic techniques were used to qualitatively describe women's reports of their emotional responses.


Forty-eight percent of participants were offered the opportunity to view their ultrasound, and nulliparous women were more likely than others to receive an offer (odds ratio, 2.3). Sixty-five percent of these women (31% overall) chose to view the image; nulliparous women and those living in a state that regulates viewing were more likely than their counterparts to do so (1.7 and 2.5, respectively). Some 213 women reported emotional responses to viewing; neutral emotions (fine, nothing) were the most commonly reported ones, followed by negative emotions (sad, guilty, upset) and then positive emotions (happy, excited). Women who visited clinics with a policy of offering viewing had increased odds of reporting a negative emotion (2.6).


Ultrasound viewing appears not to have a singular emotional effect. The presence of state regulation and facility policies matters for women's interest in and responses to viewing.

What I wonder is: at what stage of gestation were these viewings take place?

I remember when I went in the hospital for some bleeding at five weeks for Daughter Number 3, I took a look at the ultrasound, and I had a tough time seeing anything. I could see the beating heart, but I had difficulty making out the rest of her.

In subsequent viewings (the next one being a follow-up at 8 weeks) I could make out her body.

I would find it normal for a woman to not have a strong reaction at five weeks.

The ultrasound can only be manipulated so that the view seems smaller or less detailed. Kermit Gosnell would manipulate the ultrasound to get the right measure so that he could say the fetuses he killed were under 24 weeks.

Monday, September 15, 2014

Child Protection Contacts Mom for Letting Her Kid Play Outside

Calling Child Protection for such trifles should be criminal.

I completely relate.

I had a stranger come knock on my door to warn me that my five-year-old daughter was playing outside by herself.

On my front lawn.

When I told him, non-chalantly, that I knew,  he looked at me like: aren't you worried?

It should be assumed that kids playing by themselves within a reasonable distance from their houses are not in grave danger.

At what age? How far? It's a judgement call. I think they're fine if they're within the block, are verbal, self-aware and can express their wants and needs. As the mother of autistic children, I have given this some thought.

Kids should be able to play outside, even alone. It's good for them.

H/T: Lenore Skenazy at Reason.

QUOTATION: Persuasion

Blaise Pascal
People almost invariably arrive at their beliefs not on the basis of proof but on the basis of what they find attractive.

--Blaise Pascal, On the Art of Persuasion

Taken from The Catholic Breadbox.

My Year as an Abortion Doula


The fetus comes out easily; they put it in the bucket and shove it near me. It is fully intact, curled on its left side, fists closed, knees bent up. He sleeps just like you, I think. Then, a second thought, an act of distancing: He looks more like an alien than a person.

I have, by this point, seen lots of women and lots of fetuses, and the sight of the second doesn’t change my feelings about the first. The mourning for what could have been is countered by an appreciation for what is — a woman’s life, allowed to proceed as she wants it to.

Yeah, it's just human life. A woman's aspirations is what's really important.

Sunday, September 14, 2014

MUST-READ: Long-Term Probability of Contraceptive Failure (New York Times)

Contraception is supposed to be the solution to abortion.

It's supposed to reduce abortion.

Statistics show this is wrong.

But people put faith in that belief anyway.

People make the assumption that contraception solves the problem of abortion because they assume that with the introduction of contraception, rates of sexual activity remain the same.

People engage in sexual activity using contraception and think pregnancy will never happen to me.

Whereas in the age before widespread contraception and abortion, there wasn't nearly as much sexual activity. And people accepted that pregnancy was the natural result of sex and welcomed their children.

Take a look at these very informative charts on the likelihood of contraceptive failure over a ten year period. The follow is the number of women who will become pregnant in a ten year period after typical use.

Condom: 86 in 100

The Pill: 61 in 100 (Even perfect use has a 1 in 10 rate!)

Depo-Provera: 46 in 100 (Shocking! It's supposed to be fullproof!)

Copper IUD: 8 in 100 -- that's 1 in 12! For something that's supposed to be so safe, that stat is kinda scary!

Female Sterilization: 5 in 100. 1 in 20

Levonogestrel IUD: 2 in 100. 1 in 50.

The only thing that stops abortion is the acceptance of the child that is the result of sexual activity. If the child is not loved, he will be aborted.

Promoting contraception as a means to prevent fetal death is self-defeating.

When Catholics said contraception leads to abortion, we were right.

Women Who Are Denied Abortion More Likely to Remain With Partner: Study

From an abstract:

When a woman who seeks an abortion cannot obtain one, having a child may reshape her relationship with the man involved in the pregnancy. No research has compared how relationship trajectories are affected by different outcomes of an unwanted pregnancy.

Data from the Turnaway Study, a prospective longitudinal study of women who sought abortion in 2008–2010 at one of 30 U.S. facilities, are used to assess relationships over two years among 862 women who had abortions or were denied them because they had passed the facility's gestational age limit. Mixed-effects models analyze effects of abortion or birth on women's relationships with the men involved.

At conception, most women (80%) were in romantic relationships with the men involved. One week after seeking abortion, 61% were; two years later, 37% were. Compared with women who obtained an abortion near the facility's gestational age limit, women who gave birth had greater odds of having ongoing contact with the man (odds ratio at two years, 1.7). The odds of romantic involvement at two years did not differ by group; however, the decline in romantic involvement was initially slower among those giving birth. Relationship quality did not differ between groups.

Giving birth temporarily prolonged romantic relationships of women in this study; most romantic relationships ended soon, whether or not the woman had an abortion. However, giving birth increased the odds of nonromantic contact between women and the men involved throughout the ensuing two years.
In other words, if you give birth, you're tied to your man. How horrible is that! If you get pregnant and give birth, you're stuck having contact with the guy for the foreseeable future.

Maybe it should give people pause about who they decide to sleep with.

I'd be interested in learning the results for married women who are denied abortions, whether their marriage status has a protective effect on their relationship. A "romantic relationship" doesn't speak to the degree of commitment of both partners.

Effect of Abortion vs. Carrying to Term on a Woman's Relationship with the Man Involved in the Pregnancy
By Jane Mauldon1, Diana Greene Foster2 andSarah C. M. Roberts2
Article first published online: 8 SEP 2014
DOI: 10.1363/47e2315

Saturday, September 13, 2014

VIDEO: Art Addresses Sex-Selection Abortion in China

I thought this was clever.

As an aside-- I do have a problem with museum art. Not the art that seeks to preserve four- or five-hundred-year-old paintings that have stood the test of time and need specialized care. I'm thinking contemporary pieces. If you have to go to a museum to see your installation art, or your painting or your photography, that's just wrong. It ghettoizes art. It makes it the province of jargony specialists. If it's not something people would put in their living rooms or in a public park, or on the street, to me, it fails. Art should be part of the everyday, not walled up in an expensive museum and only brought out as part of an exhibit. And if a significant portion of the public can't appreciate it on some level, that's a fail too. Art that is so cryptic it only speaks to the initiated is gnostic and elitist. It doesn't have to be as obvious or low-brow as dogs playing poker, but it needs to speak to an audience beyond those who study Critical Theory.

That being said, Terracotta Daughters is clever and well-executed, and the idea of burying the statues is kinda cute, but burying those statues seems to be a bit of a shame. They will end up in some museum.

What I would prefer is for them to be nailed to a platform in a public square, where people sit down on benches and eat their lunch so they can contemplate this piece. I hope that ends up being their fate.

Yes, Your After Hours Matter as Mayor

Toronto Sun:

“I go and do my job. What I do after hours, it shouldn’t matter to anybody,” he said, adding he wished Ford a swift recovery.

This is a dumb attitude.

Being a mayor is not like many other jobs.

You are the mayor 24/7.

Suppose some terrorists were to commit an act of terrorism, and Rob was drunk when he was told about it?

And then he had a hangover.

You can't have an alcoholic as mayor.

It's a moot point, but it's bound to come up in the future.

Character matters, folks. So does sobriety. You need someone who can be relied upon to be ready if called into action.

UK Study Examines Women's Attitude Towards Fetal Disposal

Posting FYI:

Background and methodology: UK regulations on managing fetal tissue after pregnancy loss, including abortion, are underscored by the concept of ‘sensitive disposal’. This involves offering women burial or cremation and, when disposal is by the health care provider, separating fetal tissue from other clinical waste before incineration. We interviewed 23 women who had undergone one or more abortions about their understanding, attitudes and experiences of fetal tissue disposal and ‘sensitive disposal’. Transcripts were analysed for representative themes.

Results: Prior to the abortion, most participants did not give consideration to disposal methods because their focus was on ending the pregnancy. Appropriate disposal by health professionals was assumed but some women undergoing early medical abortion reported anxiety about how to manage disposal at home. The term ‘sensitive disposal’ was unfamiliar to most respondents. Participants generally favoured separation of fetal tissue from other clinical waste and approved of incineration as a means of destruction. Ceremonial disposal was approved of following the loss of a wanted pregnancy but not following elective abortion. Most wanted the opportunity to access information about disposal but did not favour being asked or required to make decisions about disposal.

Discussion and conclusions: Knowledge about the management of fetal tissue after abortion or the concept of ‘sensitive disposal’ was limited among the women we interviewed. Current guidelines appear discordant with the views of women terminating an unwanted pregnancy. Further research is needed to better inform policy on this issue.
Just bear in mind this is a small study, and two of the authors work for the BPAS, Britian's public abortion provider.

Disposal of fetal tissue following elective abortion: what women think
J Fam Plann Reprod Health Care jfprhc-2013-100849Published Online First: 8 September 2014

QUOTATION: Sinners are No Argument Against Christianity

G.K. Chesterton
It is no disgrace to Christianity, it is no disgrace to any great religion, that its counsels of perfection have not made every single person perfect. If after centuries a disparity is still found between its ideal and its followers, it only means that the religion still maintains the ideal, and the followers still need it.

--G.K. Chesterton in The Illustrated London News, March 2, 1929

Taken from The Catholic Breadbox.