Model Policies for the Treatment of Transgender Students in Virginia’s Public Schools. PLEASE READ IT!

The Virginia Department of Education (VDOE) has released a draft proposal of a new policy to be forced upon all public schools, promoting radical transgender ideology, and undermining the role of parents in the raising of their children.

The draft is entitled, ‘Model Policies for the Treatment of Transgender Students in Virginia’s Public Schools.’ Please read it!

LifeSite.com has provided an easy opportunity to contact our state legislators to voice our disapproval of such a policy. We can also use LifeSite.com to access Virginia’s official Town Hall ‘Public Comment Forum’ to enter a comment. Please take advantage of these tools to voice disapproval of such a radical policy in our public schools before February 3rd when public consultation ends.

Isn’t it interesting that the more those in leadership move away from God and His truths on morality, the more another ‘morality’ is sought to be imposed? Again, take a lesson from history. It has happened over and over again.

God is Love. How can those who have little time for God and His teachings possibly guide us on how to love one another? Who are the ones who are taught to love their neighbor because that person is made in the image and likeness of Almighty God? It is Christians, particularly Catholics – not someone who has some vague religious belief that ultimately centers on himself.

Does God, Who is Love, love every person He has created? Absolutely. Does He want each person to know His love, His joy and His peace? Yes. Does He therefore accept and endorse behavior of His beloved children that He knows will not bring them love, joy and peace? No. Love does not mean I encourage another to do something which I know will not bring love, joy and peace, but rather fear, sadness and hurt.

Would we say a parent loves a two year old by letting him play next to a busy street alone – even if the child wants to do so? Would we say a parent loves a sixteen year old daughter who allows the daughter to take the car when she is drunk just because she wants to do so? Absolutely not. Then why, do we think it is ‘love’ to encourage – not even allow – children to make life decisions that will hurt them?

Such is the case in transgenderism. Children – and teens – are given to their parents to help them know and understand their sexuality. God has given parents

the gifts to raise their children emotionally, physically, psychologically and spiritually as God has created them – male or female. Children are given to parents, not to schools, not to governments.

Are there those who struggle with their sexuality/gender? Yes. Do we love them and want the best for them? Yes. Who is Love? God. Who guides us according to God’s teachings on love? His Church; His Authority that He left on earth to teach everything He has commanded. It is to His Apostles, His Church, that He promised He would be with until the end of time. (cf. Matthew 28: 18-20)

God bless

FRVW

‘A boy is a boy and a girl is a girl’

The Litany of St. Joseph

Lord, have mercy on us Christ, have mercy on us.

Lord, have mercy on us.

Jesus, hear us, Jesus, graciously hear us.

God the Father of heaven, have mercy on us.

God the Son, Redeemer of the World, have mercy on us.

God the Holy Spirit, have mercy on us.

Holy Trinity, one God, have mercy on us.

Holy Mary, pray for us.

St. Joseph, pray for us.

Renowned offspring of David, pray for us.

Light of Patriarchs, pray for us.

Spouse of the Mother of God, pray for us.

Chaste guardian of the Virgin, pray for us.

Foster father of the Son of God, pray for us.

Diligent protector of Christ, pray for us.

Head of the Holy Family, pray for us.

Joseph most just, pray for us.

Joseph most chaste, pray for us.

Joseph most prudent, pray for us.

Joseph most strong, pray for us.

Joseph most obedient, pray for us.

Joseph most faithful, pray for us.

Mirror of patience, pray for us.

Lover of poverty, pray for us.

Model of artisans, pray for us.

Glory of home life, pray for us.

Guardian of virgins, pray for us.

Pillar of families, pray for us.

Solace of the wretched, pray for us.

Hope of the sick, pray for us.

Patron of the dying, pray for us.

Terror of demons, pray for us.

Protector of Holy Church, pray for us.

Lamb of God, who takes away the sins of the world, spare us, O Jesus.

Lamb of God, who takes away the sins of the world, graciously hear us, O Jesus.

Lamb of God, who takes away the sins of the world, have mercy on us, O Jesus.

He made him the lord of his household And prince over all his possessions.

Let us pray: O God, in your ineffable providence you were pleased to choose Blessed Joseph to be the spouse of your most holy Mother; grant, we beg you, that we may be worthy to have him for our intercessor in heaven whom on earth we venerate as our Protector: You who live and reign forever and ever.

Saint Joseph, pray for us.

2021, Year of St. Joseph

On December 8, 2020 Pope Francis declared this liturgical to be the year of St. Joseph.  It is an inspiration of the Holy Spirit to do so.  As we muddle through social and political struggles that carry over from Covid-2020, we are very aware of the workings of the demons.  Who is the ‘Terror of Demons’?  It is one of the titles of St. Joseph.  Joseph: the silent, poor, humble carpenter that Our Lord chose to be His foster-father and virginal spouse of Our Lady.  This strong man was the protector of the Holy Family.  He was given the title Protector of the Church by Pope Pius IX in 1870 as secular forces sought to kill the pope in Rome. 

Perhaps, every one of us can make a new year’s resolution to become more devoted to St. Joseph in 2021.  There are many prayers that invoke his powerful intercession – his litany is particularly beautiful.  St. Teresa of Avila, the great Carmelite mystic, said Joseph never failed her.  Mother (St.) Teresa of Calcutta often went to Joseph for various needs.

To get to know St. Joseph in a deeper way this year, not only are prayers important, but reading the insights of the saints can be helpful.  One book that has summarized prayers and insights of St. Joseph is by Fr. Don Calloway.  The book is entitled, Consecration To St. Joseph.  It is designed to be used within a thirty day preparation for consecration to St. Joseph.

The one human person who loved Jesus and Mary more than any other is St. Joseph.  As he protected the God-man and His Mother, Joseph will do the same for us this year.  We just need to do as he did and love Jesus and Mary daily!

God bless

FRVW

Epiphany

There is a conflict between Faith and Science!  Really?  Not from the angle of Faith, namely the Catholic Faith.  The Catholic Faith has no fear of science.  Why are people of science fearful of the Faith?  Ah, some will say they are not afraid of Faith.  Why not present the whole truth, history between Faith and Science then?!  Perhaps, it would be good for us to consider just a few points.

God is the creator of the spiritual and physical world.  As people of faith, there is no worry that science will discredit and/or contradict God’s existence and all His tenets.  Why should there be any conflict between the spiritual and physical world if they have the same Author?

If one does not admit God’s existence, how did matter that breaks down and vanishes exist?  The ‘pure’ evolutionist will say it was some sort of release of energy – call it a ‘Big Bang’ – that brought matter into existence and started evolution.  Hmmm.  There’s a problem rooted in the faith of the evolutionist.  Yes, I said ‘faith of the evolutionist.’  What caused the Big Bang if not a Being that exists outside of it and is not dependent any other power for existence?  What caused that release of energy?  Where did the initial matter come from that blew up?  It did not get there on its own!  Again, something outside of the material world had to have created it.  In both cases the evolutionist has faith, belief without seeing, because he believes in these things without proof!  Every evolutionist has faith, just a blind faith.  (We should not forget that the author of the Big Bang Theory was a Catholic priest, Fr. Georges Lemaitre.   He attempted to show that God could have created the universe using a Big Bang!)

But, the Catholic Church has been anti-science!  It silenced Galileo when he taught the truth of the solar system revolving around the sun rather than the earth.  Yes, there were some clerics who overreached their bounds with Galileo.  But, was it because of the subject of his teaching?  Let’s not forget who Galileo followed in his thought of a heliocentric solar system.  Copernicus taught the same roughly a century before Galileo.   He was not disciplined by the Catholic Church.  Actually, do you Copernicus’ full name?  Nicholas Copernicus.  Father Nicholas Copernicus was a Catholic priest!

For those of you who are Star Trek devotees, what is the name of the captain in the ‘Next Generation’ Star Trek?  Jean Picard?  Fictional?  He is not a fictional character totally.  He was a Catholic priest in the 1600s who developed the standard method for measuring the right ascension of a celestial object.  The ‘Picard’ mission, an orbiting solar observatory, was named after him.  Coincidence?

There have been thousands of faithful Catholics who have contributed to and been involved in science throughout the centuries.  It is dishonest and ignorant to claim otherwise.  Today, as we remember the Three Wise Men whose study of the stars led them to Jesus, God, may we be led to Jesus by our study of science.

God bless FRVW

Feast of the Holy Family

On behalf of all the priests we hope that everyone is having a holy and joyful Christmas! Recall, Christmas is not just the celebration of the Birth of Jesus Christ for one day. It is eight day celebration of Jesus’ Birth and the God-man’s presence in the world!

What is God’s definition of a successful family? It would be the family of which the Son of God was a part, The Holy Family. The key to a successful family is holiness – godliness. The Holy Family of Jesus, Mary and Joseph was poor and unnoticed by the ‘powerful’ of their time. Yet, they were the most influential family in all of history! Why? The Holy Family was rooted in God and doing His Will.

How important are truly successful – holy – families to the world? The Son of God chose to be a part of a family. God’s example always teaches us what is best. He chose to have a mother and father on earth. He did not come as an individual, but as a part of a community of persons –similar to the Community of Persons in the Blessed Trinity. The family is the MOST important entity to society according to the example of Jesus Christ! Future husbands/fathers and wives/mothers are raised in a family. Future consecrated men and women learn to give of themselves first in the family before they give themselves to God. Single men and women learn to give of themselves selflessly first in the family. Does Our Lord provide when tragic events separate families? Yes. However, the family is the root for love and society.

On today’s Feast of the Holy Family it is good for us to ponder the home, the life of Jesus, Mary and Joseph. We see the focus on Jesus, God. We see sacrificial love between Mary and Joseph. We see respect and obedience in the Christ Child. We see a family that lived and interacted much each day – the holy house of Nazareth is only ONE ROOM. We see joy and humility. There is so much for us to ponder and learn from Jesus, Mary and Joseph!

May our families resemble the Holy Family. May they truly be holy families that we may truly be successful!

God bless

FRVW

Fear

At the Incarnation of the Son of God, there is a natural emotion that is addressed in the Gospels: Fear, the aversion to a perceived danger.

The Archangel Gabriel appears to Zechariah and tells him, ‘Do not be afraid, for your prayer is heard, . . .’

After greeting Our Lady, Gabriel says to her, ‘Do not be afraid, Mary, for you have found favor with God.’

St. Joseph is told by the angel, ‘Joseph, son of David, do not fear to take Mary your wife, for that which is conceived in her is of the Holy Spirit; . . .’

Finally, the angel greets the shepherds, ‘Be not afraid; for behold, I bring you good news of a great joy . . . .’

As a natural emotion, fear is neutral, neither good nor evil.  Virtue or vice is based upon a person’s response to fear.  Mary is said to have been ‘troubled’ at the Archangel’s words and visit.  Granted, an Archangel is visiting her; honoring her with the greeting, ‘Hail, full of grace’; inviting her to be the Mother of God – though she had taken a vow of virginity.  If there were any natural emotion of fear in Our Lady, she quickly gives it to God, the Father in total trust of His Plan: ‘Let it be done unto me according to Thy Will.’

How often does fear lead me to mistrust Our Lord?  To forget that He is my merciful, loving, almighty Father?  How often does fear paralyze me from prayer, works of mercy and my daily duties according to my state in life?  The devil often uses fear to paralyze us, to discourage us and to disrupt our peace of soul.

We have seen a good bit of attention given to fear this year, haven’t we?!  Paralysis from receiving the sacraments; from interacting with our fellow man?  How many have used fear to control others; fear of being fined or closed?  How many addictions from discouragement?  How much despair?

Fear of losing God’s life and going to hell, can be a motivator to avoid evil.  And, yet, it seems pretty clear fear often focuses us on this life only.  When we forget God is my Loving Father, fear of sickness, of suffering, of death can be overwhelming.  Welcome to our world of 2020!

Rather than acquiescing to messages of fear from many in our secular world, may we turn to Our Lady and ask her this Advent for a deeper trust in her Son.  For, it is His Birth that brings the message of Truth: ‘Be not afraid.’

God bless

FRVW

Voting 2020

In just a few weeks, Americans will again have the opportunity to elect various government officials.  Our Founding Fathers were not perfect.  That said, when they founded this Democratic Republic, they established an incredible system wherein every person would have an equal vote to elect representatives to govern the country.

As Catholics, our Faith, established by Almighty God in Jesus Christ, is our guide as how to apply moral principles so as to cast a vote which is a good action rather than a bad action.  Voting is a moral action: it is either virtuous or sinful.  Some would say the Church should stay out of politics.  True and false.  When priests in various countries have tried to run for politics, the Church has told them to choose the priesthood or politics.  That said, the Church as the Moral Teacher in the world, must address and judge policies that various candidates may espouse.  What of a society that ceases to incorporate principles of Natural Law and Christian charity?  If no one has a right to life; a right to religious liberty; a right to private property?  How long can it endure?

In 2012 Pope Benedict XVI wrote a document entitled, ‘Sacramentum Caritatis’ wherein he explained there are Three Non-Negotiables that a Catholic may never compromise:

Sanctity of Life
Sanctity of Marriage
Religious Liberty

At times people wish to confuse issues related to life as all equal.  Some may say immigration, the death penalty, abortion and euthanasia are equal.  They are not.  Abortion and euthanasia are inherently evil; they can NEVER be good or allowed.  They are the deliberate killing of an innocent human being.  As a Catholic, one may never support abortion

Marriage between a man and a woman is an absolute, objective good as God established it.  So called ‘same-sex marriage’ is inherently wrong; no child can come forth from it.  You will notice that not too long ago we were told to ‘tolerate’ others’ choices.  Do they tolerate ours now?  Will they?

Religious Liberty is an absolute that may never be compromised.  Whether to live out one’s beliefs without harassment in business or in attendance at Mass, religious liberty is innate to the human person.  There are those running for public office who would require Catholic institutions to pay for abortifacient drugs for employees.

The pre-eminent issue, of course, is abortion and the right to life upon which all other rights are built.  What is a candidate’s voting record on abortion?  Even if a candidate says he/she cares about the sanctity of human life, what has been his/her actions?  One may even say he/she is a faithful Catholic.  Has he/she supported abortion?  Facts are facts.  One can easily find the answers from faithful Catholic entities – for example, National Catholic Register.  One can also just read each party’s platform.

May we vote as Catholics this year who are faithful to Jesus Christ in all elements of our lives.

God bless

FRVW

Fraternal Correction Points by Fr. Herbert F. Smith, S.J.

  1. Unless you are a model correction taker, be slow to give it.
  2. Correct like a friend and fellow sinner, not like an enemy.
  3. Knowing how you resent unjust correction, never inflict it.
  4. Harping on past faults is not correction but condemnation.
  5. Know that love wins over better than an army of accusations.
  6. Get help to correct when it is needed.
  7. Frame the correction so it will heal and not wound further.
  8. Decide first whether the person needs correction or help.
  9. Correct infrequently, and only the greater failings.
  10. Correction hurts, so don’t correct with a sledgehammer.
  11. Think how prayerfully Mary would correct, and imitate her.
  12. Put yourself in the culprit’s shoes and think about it.  You may end up congratulating him for not being worse!

Mother Teresa

We hope everyone is having a ‘peaceful’ return to school! It is encouraging to see many parents involved in the education of their children this fall, especially religious instruction.

Over the course of the last many months I have been trying to consider the lives of saints who worked with the poor and the sick. How many there are who cared for the sick and the dying without any of the advances of modern medicine! Their faith and trust in Almighty God’s protection and providence is an example worth considering in our present situation.

One recent saint who cared for the poor, the sick and the dying was Mother Teresa. She died September 5, 1997. On September 10, 1946, after seventeen years as a teaching Sister, she sensed a calling from Our Lord to live with and care for the poorest of the poor – in a predominantly non-Christian country: India. On December 21, 1948 she made her first visit to the slums of Calcutta. After daily Holy Communion and Rosary in hand, she went out each day to serve Jesus in ‘the unwanted, the unloved and uncared for.’ One by one, her former students joined her.

Mother Teresa’s new congregation, The Missionaries of Charity, was established officially on the feast of Our Lady of the Rosary, October 7, 1950. By the 1960s MCs were going out to other countries to care for society’s cast-aways. By the 1990s the MCs were in all of the former communist countries, including the former Soviet Union, Albania and Cuba.

As a younger priest, I was given many opportunities to offer Mass for the MCs in Washington, DC at their Home for the Dying/AIDS House and their Soup Kitchen/Home for Mothers and Children. There is so much to learn from these humble yet capable consecrated women! Their joy and care for others – intermingling with their residents freely and without fear. Their sensitivity with their residents – physical touch is the language of love, especially to the terminally ill and dying. Their daily life of prayer that begins with early morning Mass, Liturgy of the Hours, hours of Eucharistic Adoration and devotion to Our Lady in the Rosary.

A few quotes from Mother Teresa worth considering:

· Being unwanted, unloved, uncared for, forgotten by everybody, I think is a much greater hunger, a much great poverty than the person who has nothing to eat.

· Each one of them is Jesus in disguise.

· Do not wait for leaders; do it alone, person to person.

God bless

FRVW