Current Events

When An Abortion Goes Wrong

Newborn after typical hospital birth

Image via Wikipedia

I understand that there’s debate on whether or not abortion should be legal. I think it should be restricted as much as possible. There, sometimes, are, however, those stories you hear about where I’m not sure how anyone would think an act is acceptable.

In Rossano, Italy, a story of a baby boy aborted at 22 weeks survived, abandoned for 24 hours until being discovered and taken to a neonatal unit. The boy died the next day. ZENIT (ignore the warning if you’re using a browser trying to protect you from harm) has the full story. In short, the abortion was performed, the child survived and was left on a sheet in a container on Saturday. On Sunday, someone noticed movement in the container and alerted a hospital chaplain. 

This is disgusting. I’m ignoring the decision to have an abortion for the moment, but for the doctors to deliver a living child and to just leave it? I don’t care what belief system you have and your thoughts on abortion, that’s murder. I’m completely outraged. I realize the goal was to eliminate the fetus/baby’s life, but to leave it, alone, suffering? The kid lived for a whole day at 22-weeks after conception outside of the womb. The baby completed his first day with almost his entire life (with life being used by the current, least-common-denominator-definition, that is, from birth) alone in a trash container.

In all honesty, I don’t get very emotionally involved with the issue of abortion itself. I suppose I understand the logical fallacy that folks are using to justify it. I completely think it is wrong and think their logic is, literally, fatally flawed, but I don’t get pissed about it.

This is a completely different matter. It’s hard for me to let Olivia cry for more than a minute without going to her. To rip a child from the womb prematurely, never to be held by loving arms, left to die alone… it is sub-human.
Current Events Daddy's Corner Personal

All Good Things…

All good things must come to an end and this is true once again.

After much discernment, prayer, conversation and a bit of gut feeling, I am resigning from the University Catholic Center, effective March 1st. I’ve been employed at the UCC full-time through various positions since the summer of 2005 and have done a great range of project and activities. These five years with all of the experiences I’ve had, new friends I’ve met and folks I’ve (hopefully) had the blessing to help have been quite amazing, unique and, in the true sense of the word, special to me.

I’ve seen quite a bit at the UCC. When I started, Fr. Dave was a year into the director chair, Fr. Ed Koharchik was a newly-ordained priest, Fr. Richard was packing up after helping with the transition of leadership. Deacon John was still working full-time at the UT System and thus not at the UCC anywhere nearly as often as we see him now. Pat Martin was the business manager not long after taking over for her husband, Deacon Terry Martin. Terri Grayson welcomed students and parents at the Front Desk. We had no development office or effort, all of the musicians were volunteers and I was the first student-employee in a number of years.

Fr. Dave left to serve as vocations director for the Paulists. Fr. Ed Koharchik left to serve the Paulists in outreach ministry and was tapped by then-Bishop Aymond to serve as pastor in Dripping Springs. Fr. Richard went back to hospital and other pastoral work. Pat moved on to start her own business and Terri left us to move on to other opportunities. I’ve had the pleasure of working, on staff, with some amazing folks– Jimmy Rose, Chris Babb, Amelia (Perry), Michelle Goodwin, Amber Fogarty, Ana-Cristina Gonzalez, Vanessa Mena, Deacon Tom Johnson, Ruben Garza, Beth Boren, Rosa Marroquin, Eugene Martir, Patrick Sheffield, Allie D’Amico, Adam Henry, Emily Bivona, Alicia Bivona, Maricar Reyes, Rob Johnson, Scott Ball, Jason Pinkstaff and the rest of the CCS crew here during the Diocesan campaign and eight great students from San Juan Diego Catholic High School. I’ve learned from all of these folks and so many more in our student organizations and our resident community.

The UCC was my spiritual home when I first walked onto the 40 Acres in August 2002. I’ve been in this building, more or less, every day since then. I can’t remember how much has changed. The baptismal font, crucifix behind the altar, the chairs, the altar and ambo, the stations of the cross were all great changes in the chapel space. I used to talk to Gloria in the office that’s since been renovated into our reconciliation chapel, the computer lab used to be just another classroom, the basement had completely inadequate heating and cooling, our parking lot used to have a full-time attendant facilitating the double-parking. I’ve fought with people who couldn’t understand why we wouldn’t let them park in our lot at 7:45 p.m. on a Sunday night (I don’t care if the Tower has a big “1” on it for the football team… you can’t park here!)

This building, this community, these organizations have been a home to me when I first left home and helped to guide me into making Austin my home. This community took a know-it-all, overall closed-minded 17-year old into a know-most-everything, relatively open-minded 25-year old. (The transformation seems more extreme in my head than it does typed out.)

In short, it has been truly an honor and blessing to be able to call this place my home and my workplace for all of these years. The University Catholic Center and all of the people I’ve encountered through it will hold a dear place in my heart.

I’ll follow-up with more on why I’m leaving and where I’m going.

Current Events Film and TV Funny

After 17 Years, Leno Hangs Up 10:35

Last night, Jay Leno hosted his final tonight show, available until mid-June on, mixing both a look at the past and a look toward the future.

His opening stand-up included thanking Michael Jackson, Monica and Bill and others who helped the comedy write itself during the past 17 years. The comedy piece was a look back at the best of Jaywalking, his regular feature of recorded bits walking around L.A. asking “normal” folks easy current events questions with quite humorous results.

His only guest was his replacement–Conan O’Brien–with a somewhat awkward interview looking at what the new The Tonight Show will look like starting on Monday.

Musical guest was James Taylor. Leno introduced him mention that on his way out of Boston years and years ago Taylor’s song, “Ten miles behind me and Ten-thousand more to go” was playing on the radio leaving an impression on him that has lasted all these years.

The final “goodbye”, I thought, was the most touching. I’m going to let you watch that for yourself. It starts after the final commercial break.

Conan begins on Monday. Leno’s new show will premier at 9 pm (Central) in September.

Current Events Technology

Breaking News?

I got this in my e-mail twenty-four hours ago. Can anyone tell me how this is “news”, but less “breaking news”?

from CNN Breaking News <>
date Fri, Apr 17, 2009 at 1:18 AM
subject CNN Breaking News

— Ashton Kutcher is first to reach 1 million followers in Twitter contest with CNN.


CNN’s Dr. Sanjay Gupta follows a mother, a son, a daughter and a
husband — each an addict — on a journey through recovery and
relapse. Watch “Addiction: Life on the Edge,” Saturday and Sunday
8 p.m. ET, only on CNN.

You have opted-in to receive this e-mail from
To unsubscribe from Breaking News e-mail alerts, go to:

One CNN Center Atlanta, GA 30303
(c) & (r) 2009 Cable News Network

Current Events Tradition

Indulgences for World Youth Day

I wanted to pass along a little
nugget from this morning’s Vatican news briefing. Pope Benedict XVI
will be extending a plenary indulgence for all who are attending WYD in
Sydney and a partial indulgence for all who pray for the spiritual
goals and happy outcome of WYD.

To receive the partial indulgence, all you need to do is pray for
the success of WYD and the three “normal” things needed for an
indulgence — confession, communion and praying for the Pope’s

As the Catechism reminds us, an indulgence is a remission before God of the
temporal punishment due to sins whose guilt has already been forgiven.
other words, even though our sin is forgiven, there remain temporal
punishment (i.e. purgatory). An indulgence pardons us from the
remaining temporal punishment. An indulgence can be “partial”–removing
some of the time–or “plenary”–removing all of our temporal punishment.

This is one of those aspects of our faith that not everyone will
get excited about and admittedly, it isn’t the easiest concept to
grasp, but one of the various options the Church gives to us to help us
to become closer to God.

You can read more
about the Apostolic Penitentiary, the Vatican office whose only job is
to handle matters of indulgences and issues of the “internal forum”
(i.e. stuff to be talked about under the seal of confession) at their

Below is the news brief from the Vatican Information Service:



VATICAN CITY, 5 JUL 2008 (VIS) – According to a
decree made public today and signed by Cardinal James Francis Stafford and
Bishop Gianfranco Girotti, O.F.M. Conv., respectively penitentiary major
and regent of the Apostolic Penitentiary, Benedict XVI will grant the
faithful Plenary Indulgence to faithful who
“gather at Sydney,
Australia, in the spirit of pilgrimage” to
participate in celebrations for 23rd World
Youth Day, and Partial Indulgence to “
all those who,
wherever they are, will pray for the spiritual goals of this meeting and
for its happy outcome”.


  The English-language decree reads:
“The youth meeting held in the year 2005 in Cologne, offered the
Apostolic Penitentiary an opportune occasion, with the authority of the
Supreme Pontiff, to open wide to youth the spiritual treasures of the
Church, with the aim of gathering singular fruits of


  “Hence, this year, from 15 to 20
July, in Sydney, ‘in the great southern land of
the Holy Spirit’ (according to the expression of John Paul II), will
celebrate the 23rd World Youth Day, with the theme: ‘You will receive
power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you; and you will be my


  Indeed”, the decree adds, “young people
gathered around the Vicar of Christ will participate in the sacred
functions and above all have recourse to the Sacraments of Reconciliation
and the Eucharist. In the Sacraments received with a sincere and humble
heart, they will earnestly desire to strengthen themselves in the Spirit,
and, confirmed by the Chrism of salvation, will openly witness the faith
before others even to the ends of the earth. May God grant that the very
presence of the Supreme Pontiff among the young people gathered in
express and render it such”.


The indulgences may be gained in the following


The Plenary
Indulgence is granted to the faithful who will devotedly participate at
some sacred function or pious exercise taking place during the 23rd World
Youth Day, including its solemn conclusion, so that, having received the
Sacrament of Reconciliation and being truly repentant, they receive Holy
Communion and devoutly pray according to the intentions of His


  “The Partial Indulgence is granted
to the faithful, wherever they are during the above-mentioned meeting, if,
at least with a contrite spirit, they will raise their prayer to God the
Holy Spirit, so that young people are drawn to charity and given the
strength to proclaim the Gospel with their life.


  “So that all the faithful may more
easily obtain these heavenly gifts, priests who have received legitimate
approval to hear sacramental confessions, should welcome them with a ready
and generous spirit and suggest public prayers to the faithful, for the
success of the same World Youth Day”.

VIS 080707

Current Events Personal

I’m Running for Office