Wednesday, December 9, 2009

It Aint So Bad...

With Christmas and other holidays approaching, and the days becoming shorter, some people feel depressed. This week it seems there is a lot to be depressed about, especially if you are a person who values human rights and life. The news is full of stories.

Despite the fact that no useful therapies have been developed, or are close or even likely to be developed by embryonic stem cells, the Obama administration announced the approval of human embryonic stem cell lines for use in federally funded experiments. Our tax dollars are supporting this waste of money and lives.

Our senate has voted down the Nelson amendment. That amendment to the health care bill would have preserved the status quo by preventing our tax dollars to directly pay for elective abortions. In this, the senate disregarded precedent, the will of the people and our consciences.

In more local news we have stories like gay marriage being approved by the NJ senate judiciary committee. Then there's the Vermont court that violated the rights of a biological mother and further rejected the rights of families by awarding custody of a woman's only child to her former lesbian lover. We have the story of a New York woman how tried to force another woman to have an abortion, and when the baby was born alive in spite of her, tried to murder it.

Nor are things better internationally, where Ireland's laws that protect the life of unborn children are under attack by the European Union. In Africa we have the sad case of a law that provides the death penalty for gays. In Copenhagen we have more bad science used to justify discarding human rights with the climate conference.

Our country, and indeed the world are suffering from economic crises and moral decay. Yep, there's a lot to be depressed about. And yet, there's also a lot to be hopeful about. This is advent, a season of hope. Yesterday Pope Benedict XVI said in an address for the Feast of the Immaculate Conception.
Every day, through newspapers, television and radio, evil is recounted, repeated, amplified, making us accustomed to the most terrible things, making us insensitive and, in some way, intoxicating us, because the negative is never fully purged and accumulates day after day. The heart becomes harder and thoughts become darker. For this reason, the city needs Mary who ... brings us hope even in the most difficult situations.
The media, he said, tends "to make us feel like spectators, as if evil regards only others and certain things could never happen to us." Instead, "we are all actors, and for better or worse, our behaviour has an influence on others."

And of course he is right. If we listen to the news of the day, we can get so bogged down with the evil in the world we forget the Truth; that Christ has already conquered sin and death - that Christ died for us, personally. We have been assured "the gates of hades shall not prevail against the Church".

So don't give in. Be hopeful and have a blessed Advent.


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