Monday, December 28, 2009

Christmastide - the new penitential season.

And other thoughts of course...
Post-Christmas diets.  If you work in an office or are amongst people anywhere after Christmas Day, you will most certainly hear people complaining of how much they ate, drank, and all the weight they gained.  See - that's just so odd, foolish virgin talk - they pigged out all through Advent and are doing their penance during the most wonderful time of the year.
Holy day and Sunday obligations.  Remember a few days - weeks ago - I know, it's all a blurr, but I wrote on how some pastors and religious writers cannot bear to suggest attending Mass on Sundays and Holy days is actually an obligation.  They prefer to believe that people will attend because they want to, out of devotion and religious fervor.  That's so sweet!  Anyway - many protestant sects, as well as the Obamas, are not obligated to attend church on Christmas, and they don't.  Just sayin' Johann - that argument is shot to hell isn't it.
Christmas songs recorded by popular singers.  They shouldn't ever be played.  I was in several stores last week and the very worst Christmas songs I ever heard were played over the sound system.  One by Willie Nelson that sounded like some old drunk singing in a bar.  The other, "Ave Maria" sung by Stevie Wonder.  Horrible.  It was just horrible.  Now you know why unbelievers want Christmas eliminated from the public square.
Kids in Santa hats.  Did you know moms put baby girls in baby wigs now?  I didn't - but I saw a lot of baby girls in Santa hats at Mass on Christmas.  So anyway.  I went to the Children's Mass Christmas Eve.  It was wild - but I wanted to go early because we were having a big snow storm and I did not want to go out later or go out the next day.  I saw the Griswolds there - really, about 100 families of them.  I also noticed many 2 parent professional families with multi-national children - obviously adopted.  I could tell the women were professional because they wore suits, and the children were obviously from other countries because they  looked entirely different from the parents.  (Nothing wrong with that.)  The parish I attend is rather affluent - I mention that because it is very expensive to adopt.  Believe me, I think it is wonderful to adopt; children from the U.S. or elsewhere - I also know it's hard to get babies, unless you adopt from other countries.  I know a little about the process from friends who adopted, I also know there are many reasons people adopt, and so on.  So what's my point?  I'm not sure.


  1. It boggles the mind why anyone, like the Obamas, would not go to Church on the most Holy Day of the year--CHRISTMAS! Unless of course you were not really Christian. Maybe they could just stay home and help moms put wigs on their kids :)

  2. Terry, once again, you state so well what is in my own chaotic brain (sorry to scandalize anyone here!).
    People are somthin' else....somethin' else.
    Without Jesus and the Church, oh dear God, I don't want to even go there!

  3. Wigs on babies? Say it isn't so!
    Adoption- maybe the rich ladies didn't want to ruin their figures by actually having babies.....If there were less abortions, there would be more babies to adopt and maybe the cost would go down. Just sayin'.

  4. I am going to respond to that as calmly as I can.

    I am an adoptive mother.

    NO ONE in her right mind would have her finances, intimate life, past life, mental and physical health, etc. scrutinized in that way because she *didn't want to ruin her figure.* No one would ache for the child still waiting for them in Ethiopia while legalities are settled, staying up late wondering, pleading with God that their child had enough to eat that day, to save her figure.

    I had been married for 4 years before we adopted. After 3 more years, I am pregnant. If I'm not infertile, I certainly have suppressed fertility. I didn't care how I became a mother, I just begged God to let me. And He did. Now, He's blessed us again.

    The "cost" of adoption has nothing to do with the number of babies available. Babies are NOT BOUGHT like so much chattel. The costs involved in adoption are LEGAL costs, and frankly, they're not excessive. I guarantee you I wrote fewer checks for legal fees (oh, the legal paperwork that has to be filed, the attorneys who work late to get YOUR petition filed!) than the average person does to start a small business, or the average klutz does to sue WalMart when they slip and fall as they're hurrying to the 2-for-1 mayonnaise sale.
    My attorney worked HARD for us, spent DAYS in the courthouse for us, and did so many other costly, time-consuming minutiae that adoption involves. Best checks I ever wrote, you can believe that.

    I don't give a crap WHY people adopt or FROM WHERE they adopt. That is just as personal as asking what position or room my husband and I were in when my 2nd child was conceived. But I can tell you that judging adoptive parents is scandalous and NOT pro-life.

    They need our support and encouragement, not our scandalous assumptions.

    Reminding myself to bask in the peace of Christmas now...

  5. And yeah, parents do some ignorant stuff these days.
    Those wigs are ridonkulous. Almost as ridonkulous as little girls with pierced ears, although the wigs can be removed and are painless...

  6. Dear Cathy - I apologize for being so thoughtless. Thank you very much for defending adoption and the love which compels husbands and wives, and single parents to want to share their lives with an unwanted child or orphan.

    I was extremel;y uncharitable and offensive implying anything less than these noble intentions - I wonder if it betrays an unadmitted envy on my part? Being a single man without children, and not quite as affluent as my neighbors... and more deeply, perhaps an echo of resentment since my family life was not nurturing and loving. Whatever the case may be - I have no right to say such things.

    At any rate - you are absolutely right and I ask you to accept my most sincere apologies that I have unwittingly offended you and others by this post. I will leave the post up since your pro-life witness to adoption is a much needed rebuke to the type of thinking my statements typifies.

    Thank you and God bless you and please pray for me that I may have a deeper conversion of heart.

  7. Terry and Cathy: I do think there is a "middle ground" here; I am not thinking so much of the interior reasons of why people adopt; but the fact is that there ARE people who, through artificial contraception or sterilization do not want children at some point in life, and then, when they FEEL they are ready, go the adoption route.
    It's important to be both affirming of the "right to life" and nurturing of life on the one hand, and not to approve (whether by what one says or does not say) of these practices of "waiting" for children and then not being able to have them, and, adopting as a form of compensation.
    I am NOT speaking here of those who cannot have children and want them desperately. Please do not misunderstand.
    But, I do, understand your point, Terry.
    The present "culture of death" has somehow given people the idea that children are a "commodity" rather than a blessing.
    And that is just wrong.
    I hope I do not offend anyone in this. I am just speaking my (perhaps) limited perceptions.

  8. Terry, you know I love you man.

    It wasn't necessarily even about what you had written. I try to educate about adoption when the opportunity presents itself, on behalf of my daughter. It's literally about education, nothing else.

    I love your thoughts and insights and your blog is one of the few I read religiously. (Ba dump bump!)
    If you're not making me laugh out loud, you're giving me a religious insight I hadn't had previously.


  9. Father,

    Absolutely. You said it much better than I did. The culture of death that enables and encourages women to contracept themselves out of fertility and then demand to have babies by any means necessary should ALWAYS be called out for what it is (in a general sense) and Mother Church's position should ALWAYS be defended most adamantly.
    And we should always remember than any life here on earth is a life God desired to exist, even if the means to bring it here were immoral, i.e. rape, incest, or IVF.

    I wish more priests would preach on this subject!

  10. Thanks Cathy and Father! I'm happy this is all sorted out now - and I'm very pleased it permitted me to accuse - rather than excuse - myself.

  11. Terry darling, no one does apologies like you. Can you write every elected official and explain it to them?

    (Even though no apology was necessary. Srsly. And in their case, it almost always is, even though we get, "I'm sorry if you were offended.")


  12. It is NOT true that all adoptions are an expensive business. Foreign adoptions, sure. But domestic adoptions...not at all. If you adopt for true philanthropic reasons.

    There are PLENTY and I mean PLENTY of babies and young children available for adoption in our very own country! (Several of my best friends are adoptive parents of these children.) These poor babies were rescued from their poor drug-addled mothers, and so they suffer from deformities and disorders due to 9 months of chemicals coursing through their tiny developing bodies, while there are slightly older children also available for adoption in our country, who suffer from severe physical abuse, and exhibit inappropriate behavior and signs of mental illness as a result. It is not costly at all to adopt these poor needy little ones. But alas, almost all of them are not perfect and most of them are multi-racial. Mix of black, white, hispanic--not the "right" ethnicity, so no one wants them.

    And, yeah, it is true that many professional women (I am myself a registered architect, I know of what I speak) who do not want to interupt career and figure to bear a child of their own. Many of them opt for none at all. But a few adopt. And do you think it's these poor little needy ones in our own country that they are knocking down the doors to obtain? No, philanthropy is the farthest thing from such people's minds. It is unbelievably the prestige, yes, prestige! of adopting a little oriental girl that they are after! Case in point:

    I was shocked beyond belief when I myself counseled a woman who was considering ending a pregnancy when she revealed all of this to me. She and her husband had spent thousands and thousands to adopt a little oriental girl, and it was just about to be finalized -- and now here she was, pregnant. She could not see how she could handle both a new baby and a newly adopted child. No matter what we said to her, or what information she learned, she was certain that one of the children would have to go. Unbelievably, this woman chose to abort her own child. She decided being a mother was not her goal, but being the "mother" of an adopted oriental girl. See, this was yet another prize to be attained, for all the world to see.

    It was then that I learned just how so very deep selfishness runs in our society. I never, ever, EVER would have imagined such a thing before. I was so naive.

  13. Georgette: How awful for you. I mean, really.
    That a woman who was with child, who wanted one so much, and at the point of adoption of another child, chose to kill her own child in the womb.
    That is just painful and so, so sad.
    May our good Jesus have mercy on us all, for somehow, we all share in the sin of not welcoming the unborn...thank you telling us about this.

  14. There are lots of babies available in America but it's more complicated than domestic adoption. A friend of a friend is trying to adopt but the 17 year old mother keeps changing her mind. This thing has dragged on for months and the poor baby could be taken back at any minute. That's not an experience most people relish especially if you've been through years of infertility hell.

  15. Gette - you expressed a couple of points I was grasping for in my post. That said - I clearly do not know a great deal about this subject - just gut reactions. I do know the trend is going for perfect kids however - as selective abortion becomes more popular, as well as selective adoption.

    This is a very complicated issue - to be sure - so I think I need to stay out of it right now.

  16. I think this is such an important topic that most people don't ever think about and you ALWAYS manage to find interesting, important topics that get people talking.

    How awful. I pray the situation is resolved soon.

  17. Fr Nazareth, thank you. It truly is so very sad. For the child. And for the morally-bankrupt mother. I pray for God to open her eyes and others like her.

    Terry, that's it. Selective, perfect children by any means necessary. Part of the whole culture of death that says, A person's dignity depends on their "wantedness".

  18. Georgette, I just did a post on how SICK I am of hearing "As long as it's healthy, right?"

    NO! We love our baby regardless of his medical condition! WHY do people say that?


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