Monday, October 29, 2007

Scholastic Dilemma

So I just recieved my schedule for next semester and its pretty loaded. I have 17 credits that are mandatory. This does not include my pastoral formation assignment, which will be 8 hours of serving the homeless on Friday. It also only includes 2 hours of Spanish, which meets for 4 hours a week. So, I basically have 19 hours of class stuffed into 4 days. Its definately do-able, but the problem is that I'd really like to take some electives. I will continue Latin, which is 2 credits more which puts me at 19 credits and 21 hours Mon-Thurs.

So the dilemma is should I really push myself and take on another elective or just really invest myself in the 17 credits I already have? If I go for the elective, which should I take. So many look good. Here is what I have to choose from:

Greek (Which I've already taken 3 times)
Health Care and Catholic Morality
Hans Urs von Balthasar
Pneumatology (Theology of the Holy Spirit)
The Theology of C.S. Lewis

Me thinks von Balthasar is the way to go if anything. I'll have to talk it over with the academic dean and my advisor. I'm sure all of these classes will be offered again, so there isn't really a rush. But I would be interested in your thoughts if you have them.

Pope to Say Mass in Satan's Lair

Rocco Palmo of whispers published this story about the Pope's plans for his upcoming visit to the United States. It looks like the Pope is planning on taking the battle between good and evil straight to the source of evil:

As things presently stand, the plan now looks to give B16 three days in New York, including a culminating Mass on the final day in Yankee Stadium, as opposed to the previously-proffered option of Central Park.

I have never been to Yankee Stadium, but I've seen many atrocities happen here. I have to hand it to the pontiff... he's fearless.

In other news from Satan's team, A-Rod won't be returning. This means that there is a good chance A-Rod will be suiting up for (of all teams) the Anaheim Angels. If this happens, there is a very good chance the Angels will pass the Yankees on my list of most hated sports franchises. Don't let the name throw, these buggers are up to no good.

Friday, October 26, 2007

Bella

I just saw it with 11 other guys from the seminary. The theater was packed and everyone applauded at the end (although I may have had something to do with that). Everyone who offered an opinion afterwards liked it. The critics have not been as positive. Rotten Tomatoes, a usually reliable indicator me gave it a 40% rating (although I've been questioning RT lately because it gave Eastern Promises and 82% and it was probably the worst film I've seen since A History of Violence, done by the same people).
I'd recommend two reviews of Bella. American Papist has a very positive review. This is in shocking contrast to another very reliable Catholic Blogger Barbara Nicolosi from Church of the Masses who doesn't have many positives things say except that she likes Eduardo Verastegui. I suggest reading them both. Although they don't contain any serious plot spoilers, I would suggest reading them after watching the movie, because (like all movies) its better to see films without that kind of bias going into it. If you haven't seen it, you might want to come back to this.....

As for myself, I disagree with both reviewers in certain ways. American Papist said that the movie was "well told." Although I didn't think it was badly told I thought there were some improvements that could have been made. This was mostly in the dialogue. The conversations between the main characters, Jose (Eduardo Verastegui) and Nina (Tammy Blanchard), did not strike me as being very, well, REAL. I took one quarter of creative writing in college and I learned a concept that you, "Show! Don't Tell!" Well, in the context of Bella, they could have shown that she was poor, afraid, and not ready to have a baby without having Nina just overtly stating "I'm poor," "I'm afraid," and "I'm not ready to have a baby."

But I consider this minor and definitely did not ruin what was (for me) a very moving film.

Nicolosi (we actually have a couple of mutual friends, although I've never met her) was very critical of the whole project (even some of the people who made it) and weaved quotes from the secular critics throughout her review which all demonstrated the film was not good. Her main problem is that Christians blindly jumped on the Bella bandwagon, completely over-hyped it, and labeled it "the greatest pro-life film ever," when in fact we could have done much better. She might be right (at least I know I blindly jumped on the bandwagon without seeing it). But, the film wasn't as bad as she seems to say. I thought was a great first attempt from Metanoia Films, and it showed promising signs of good things to come.

NOTE: I have one other comment to make but I'm really tired and I just can't quite get it to sound the way I want it to. If you're interested, check back tomorrow.

Thursday, October 25, 2007

Go See This Movie

Its called Bella and its supposed to be incredible. It has been winning awards all over the country at the various film festivals. Its most notable prize is probably the People's Choice award at the Toronto International Film Festival. This award is widely regarded as an indicator for Oscar Success, and past winners include Life is Beautiful, Crouching Tiger Hidden Dragon, Hotel Rwanda, American Beauty, and Tsotsi. Not only is the movie a great film as all of these are great films, but it also has a very positive message. It will be good to give this a good first weekend at the box office, so if you aren't doing anything GO SEE IT!!!!

Click here for a list of theaters.

Trailer:

Monday, October 22, 2007

Fire

Hello everyone. I'd like to take a moment to ask you all to pray for the wildfire situation in southern California. For those of you who don't know, there is a very strong wind that has a tendency to blow from the east, called the Santa Ana winds. When these winds begin to blow, a few morons decide that they want to go light fires. It doesn't take a large fire to get spread with these powerful winds.

I'm not in any danger here at the seminary, but there is a lot of smoke. Everyone here is coughing pretty frequently. I ask you all to join in our prayers for the safety of the firefighters, for their families, and for all who have lost property due to these criminal acts of arson.

Monday, October 15, 2007

Ministry of Reader

It is with great joy that I announce to you all that, after having petitioned my bishop, I have been called to the Ministry of Reader. I will be installed here at the seminary this Saturday October 20th.

For those of you who are unaware, Pope Paul VI replaced the minor orders of Tonsure and Porter with the ministries of Reader and Acolyte with his Motu Proprio, Ministarae Quaedam. Now, every seminarian applying for orders is entrusted with these ministries. Here is what the ministry entails for me as outlined in the Motu Proprio:

5. The reader is appointed for a function proper to him, that of reading the word of God in the liturgical assembly. Accordingly, he is to proclaim the readings from sacred Scripture, except for the gospel in the Mass and other sacred celebrations; he is to recite the psalm between the readings when there is no psalmist; he is to present the intentions for the general intercessions in the absence of a deacon or cantor; he is to direct the singing and the participation by the faithful; he is to instruct the faithful for the worthy reception of the sacraments. He may also, insofar as may be necessary, take care of preparing other faithful who are appointed on a temporary basis to read the Scriptures in liturgical celebrations. That he may more fittingly and perfectly fulfill these functions, he is to meditate assiduously on sacred Scripture.

Aware of the office he has undertaken, the reader is to make every effort and employ suitable means to acquire that increasingly warm and living love and knowledge of Scripture that will make him a more perfect disciple of the Lord.

One thing to note is that this is a permanent ministry that I am called to perform. If I were to leave seminary next Monday after being instituted a reader, I would still be asked to perform these functions. I'm a little scared, to be honest, but I'm also overjoyed at this opportunity to serve the Church.

Also, being able to take these small steps helps prepare me for Diaconate and Priesthood, if by the grace of God I am called to serve the Church in this capacity. When the rector made the announcement a small chill went through my spine. I'm seriously moving closer. I ask you all for your prayers that I will be able to meet the demands of this responsibility.

I promise that I will serve you all to the best of my abilities!

Saturday, October 13, 2007

Hey Sun Devils, Saints of New Orleans, Boston College

...and while I'm at it, Trojans.

Steeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeve Perry!

This one is definately going to work. (I just hope it isn't too late.)

Tuesday, October 09, 2007

Texas Hold Them 2

My bad for not getting this one out sooner. Many of you might remember when I blogged about a professor I had at WWU , Steven Garfinkle, who competed in the 2007 World Series of Poker. Well, last tuesday the episode aired where he was eliminated, finsihing 10th and one seat shy of becoming a millionaire. Sorry I forgot to tell you. But you are in luck! Its on Youtube. And its embedded right below this sentence.

Sunday, October 07, 2007

Psyche-Out Update

After last night's Notre Dame game, I was about to declare this whole psyche-out thing the best idea I've ever come up with. Then the Seahawks played. Awefully.

But USC lost, so thats good.

Latin test tomorrow, followed by a week of studying leading up to midterms. I have a post on the evangelical council of obedience brewing, so look out for that if youre interested.

Saturday, October 06, 2007

Here's a good laugh...

Brought to you by the women at ABC's The View (through Jimmy Akin) who recently discussed certain aspects of Church teaching.

"We were all raised Catholic here, so this is not some anti-Catholic rant that we're on. This is just factual information." Just in this statement alone: 1)Not all of them were raised Catholic. 2) Being Catholic does not mean you can't be anti-Catholic. 3)Being Catholic does not mean everything you say about the Church is factual. 4) There were very few facts presented in this segment of the show.

Jimmy has the transcript here.

I'd like to add a couple last things, speaking as an average Catholic, rather than as someone who studies theology. When you recieve communion, you are in fact making a public statement, to me and to everyone else, that you are in communion both in faith and action, with us. For most of us (usually when we slip into mortal sin) we deny ourselves communion, by not presenting ourselves. If people don't believe what we believe (in matters of faith and morals), or if they act innapropriately, they shouldn't present themselves either. I find it personally disrespectful when they do.

Comments?

Hey Steelers and Bruins.....

Despite the fact that the Steelers are decimated by injuries, 4 out of 5 morons pick the Steelers to win this Sunday.

Steeeeve Perry!
Note: I'm really going to try to make this a regular occurance. My teams depend on me.

Wednesday, October 03, 2007

A Little on ND

This year has been pretty bad, but all the talk about firing Charlie Weis is ridiculous. If this program is going to get rolling we need to let it get rolling. Here is a pretty good take on it all.


Goooooooooooo Irish! Beeeeeeeeeeeeeat Bruins!

Tuesday, October 02, 2007

Sports Adoption

I'm adopting the Colorado Rockies for the playoffs, although I question how much time I will be able to actually watch them. Things are busy. The reason for this adoption is that, if you didn't know, their playoff run has been possibly one of the most incredible feats in recent history... (they kind of remind me of a certain Seattle team in say, 1995, who was 13 out in early August and took the division in a one game playoff against the California Angels keyed by an in the park grand slam by Luis Sojo*). I will also, of course, be cheering for the Angels and the Yankees to lose, and lose bad. Between them and Cleveland, who I also don't really care for, the AL is a mine field of potential lameness. So, GO NL!

Also, its almost that time of year again! and by that time of year again, I mean time for GONZAGA BASKETBALL!

Here is a good article, posted over at La Revolucion. Oh, and speaking of La Revolucion, do check out his Gameday Video tournament bracket. Its quite good, except I really think the "selection committee" pulled a Homer by picking Thundercats over Voltron. Silly. * In seventh grade my friends and I called it a Grand Slam, but it was really a double with several errors.