Trump ties pope in poll -world doomed.

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Gallup has released their annual, ‘Most Admired Man/Women’ poll for 2015, and the winner in the man division was none other than Barack Obama. Actually, every year since Pope John Paul II’s victory in 1980, the sitting President has won top billing, which seems to say that this is the most admired vocation more so than the most admired man. I would also like to make the assertion, despite the fact that it may be way off base, that millennials are just far lazier than their predecessors, but the trend wasn’t all that much different prior to 1980, either.

Since this poll really is not interesting in the first place, we really need to drum the story up and for that we have to look to the bridesmaids. The 2nd place vote was given to Donald Trump and Pope Francis in a tie. I think this is the point that we can nail the Millenials to the church doors – Them, or Gallup themselves, who potentially ignored the epicenter of educated persons when conducting this research.

We can assign blame to the former for their anemic levels of church attendance, so diminutive, that apatheism, which says not that they think there is not a God, it’s that they just don’t care if there is a God, is a thing. Scratching your head? Look into it – it’s oddly fascinating.

We can throw our stones to the latter on the basis that hotbeds for educated persons must have been avoided, because there simply is nothing admirable about Trump. I mean, if you think misogyny is cool, sure. If you think acting like a bully is an example to follow, sure – but don’t give me some shtick that he’s a great businessman. Four corporate bankruptcies says he’s not the shrewd capitalist he says he is. If that’s not enough, had he retired over 30 years ago and put his money in a simple stock index fund, he would be worth twice as much as he says he is, but that’s only if you believe his robust $10B evaluation. I guess a bit of hard work and a $1M loan can get you anywhere.

If Trump truly is seen as an admirable figure, those 7th Day Adventists are going to be making a lot of headlines in the coming months.

Follow me on Twitter @ryandavidprice

Trump ties pope in poll -world doomed.

Central America takes migration tips from Trump

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Donald Trump’s effort to cool the melting pot and reinvigorate a dwindling blond haired and blue eyed populace has spread to Central America.

Cubans, destined for America who have chosen a route that includes traveling through Central America are being held up by Donald Trump imposters. These Cubans have opted for this route over the more conventional Cuba-Miami route as a result of US-Cuba relations that have been eased in recent history.

The Cubans are being help up at the border of Costa Rica and Nicaragua. Nicaragua has refused to allow the migrants to pass through its territory. Nicaragua has suggested that the migrants be airlifted to the United States. Without missing a beat, Donald Trump said, “We’d shoot that bird out of the sky”. Well, ok – he didn’t say that, but you can’t say that it would be beyond the pale.

With all this humanitarian adverse behavior, @pontifex is less than pleased.

“I invite the countries of the region to renew with generosity all necessary efforts in order to find a rapid solution to this humanitarian drama,” the Pope told tens of thousands of people at the Vatican’s St Peter’s Square.

It seems as though we can likely expect a rapid solution, but I anticipate it not being one that the pope would support, but that’s really just the realist in me.

Peace be with you.

Follow me on Twitter @ryandavidprice

Central America takes migration tips from Trump

Merry Christmas or Happy Holidays; you may be a jerk either way

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Today I went to pick up meat at the local butcher for the annual Christmas breakfast. As I was rung up, I noticed the cashier, a women in probably her 50’s, a women who is always pleasant to talk to, wearing a button that read, “You can say Merry Christmas to me”.

I was immediately turned off.

I generally say Merry Christmas during the holiday season, as a matter of habit. However, whenever I hear Happy Holidays, I often return in kind. Both expressions are innocuous to me. Well, most times.

If you express either in an effort to make a statement, you’re a jerk – it’s really that simple.  If you’re a secularist and use Happy Holidays to intentionally exclude using Merry Christmas, you’re a jerk. If you’re the pious type and make a point to ‘keep Christ in Christmas’, you’re also a jerk.

In an effort to enjoy the holidays, if someone offers you either where it’s clear there is no agenda, either return the sentiment in kind, or offer the one that makes you feel best during this season – I assure you, people will appreciate the sentiment. If your first reaction to, “Happy Holidays” is, “It’s Merry Christmas”, I fear to repeat; you’re the jerk.

With that, I wish you a Merry Christmas, with no ulterior motive than to wish you and your family joy and happiness.

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Merry Christmas or Happy Holidays; you may be a jerk either way

Pope Francis renounced Jewish conversion. What next, world peace?

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Pope Communist I is at it again, folks. He has renounced the practice of mission worked intended to convert Jews to Catholicism. It won’t be long before he looks us dead in the eye and asks for world peace.

The Catholic Church has historically been on the wrong side of this badminton match, which has resulted in deaths upon deaths and created a division that was otherwise not present, and certainly, unnecessary.

Though it had long been a contentious behavior, The Crusades saw a spike in this attempted, sometimes successful, conversion. Well, let’s call it a forced conversion, because after all, being offered death or conversion doesn’t really leave you with the warm and fuzzies.

These converts, or conversos – which is clearly a name given by someone’s child in the same way they name their stuffed animals. You know, if it’s a bear, for young children, they name it beary. If this isn’t universal, I suppose that means my children have no imagination. Let’s assume the former – these converso’s were relegated to second class citizenship because they were not of a Catholic bloodline and were persecuted because they were not. Talk about being damned both upstream and downstream. This, of course, was a great environment for anti-Semitism to be born and grow up healthy – of which it did.

James Carroll has a nice article in the New Yorker covering this, in which h says, “Across the centuries, the mad Christian impulse to convert Jews has erected not only pillars of anti-Semitism but also underlying structures of biological racism, white supremacy, and Western contempt for, among others, Arabs and Muslims. After the Holocaust, at the Second Vatican Council, the Church began to reckon with this legacy, especially in Nostra Aetate (“In Our Time”), a declaration from 1965, which condemned anti-Semitism and disavowed the notion that Jews had been responsible for Christ’s death. Now, though, humane new Church attitudes that were only hinted at before are being made explicit. The Catholic Church, under Pope Francis, is attempting to cure Western civilization of the illness that it caused”.

Of course, the Second Vatican Council remains a sticking point of contention and division for Catholic’s around the world, so a sentiment that supports the spirit of the Council fans the flame of contention amongst the Pre-Vatican II crowd, and this, which will not be as overt a point of contention as Kobe continuing to play, it will make some noise in the traditional Catholic camp.

Read the entirety of the article here:

http://www.newyorker.com/news/news-desk/pope-francis-and-the-renunciation-of-jewish-conversion

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Pope Francis renounced Jewish conversion. What next, world peace?

Durbin pens open letter to Francis

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I often cringe at an open letter penned by a U.S. legislator, especially when intended for someone like the Pope, if for no other reason than they are fulfilling a voided spot of their ego, or they are simply are shoring up their base. Either way, they are almost always disingenuous, and as a result, never grow any legs.

This may be an exception to that rule. This may get its legs.

Durbin has turned to the pope to tune down one of his own.

Cardinal Nicolas de Jesus Lopez Rodriguez, of the Dominican Republic, “Reportedly helped organize a protest against U.S. Ambassador James “Wally” Brewster”. Brewster is openly gay. Lopez Rodriguez has used derogatory language in his opposition to Brewster – language reserved for backroom poker games of the 60’s, or popular comedy routines of the 1980’s. I listened to a show on Frank Sinatra this past Monday to celebrate his 100th birthday, despite, you know, being dead. Some of the audio focused on the banter between him and Sammy Davis Jr. and Sinatra cracking jokes about his color, which was met with great applause.

“The church’s teachings on gay marriage are well known, but the church also teaches us to show tolerance for those with different sexual orientations,” Durbin wrote. “The intolerant public statements of Cardinal Rodriguez are inconsistent with that clearly stated value.”

This has been a cornerstone of Francis’ papacy – to maintain doctrine while exercising compassion and Cardinal Rodriguez’s comments need to be addressed, most appropriately by the pope. Unfortunately, this is not the first time Rodriguez has made disparaging remarks at Brewster.

According to Wikipedia, “When asked about problems between between Haiti and the D.R. resulting from Haiti’s claim that bird flu could be found in the D.R., Cardinal López Rodríguez laughed and said: “After talking about faggots and lesbians, now we’ll talk about chickens”. In the Dominican Republic, homosexuals are usually referred to pejoratively as “birds.”

I anticipate the Vatican to issue a statement condemning López Rodríguez’s words, but my prognostications are often wrong – after all, my intentions to eat an entire Little Caesar’s pizza on my own last night was thwarted by forgetfulness, resulting in great personal despair – hopefully this will be the rebound I so greatly need.

http://www.chicagotribune.com/news/local/breaking/ct-dominican-republic-gay-ambassador-met-20151215-story.html

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Durbin pens open letter to Francis

False selfies / St. Maria Goretti

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Today is another one of those slow news days out of the Vatican. The lead story is about a selfie the pope took and posted to an Instagram account run by the Vatican. As it turned out, this ‘story’, was false, so it is in that spirit that we move over to a bit of history.

I am looking to be merciful this year and exercise forgiveness, even under the most acute of circumstances.

For that,  I give you St. Maria Goretti:

Maria Goretti was one of seven children born to a poor Italian farming family. When she was nine, her father passed and they were forced to move in with another family. They had vacated their farm three years prior. The family they moved in with had a son that fancied Maria, and one day, when his sexual advances were shunned by Maria, the son, Alessandro, stabbed her fourteen times. She would succumb to her injuries twenty-four hours later, but not before she offered forgiveness for Alessandro, whom she wanted in heaven with her.

An eleven year old girl exercised the greatest expression of mercy and forgiveness by forgiving what she likely had known at that time, her murderer. A call to task that the most average of persons would fail spectacularly at. For this remarkable act, however, Maria was beatified in 1947 by Pope Pius XII. He canonized her three years later, in 1950.

Alessandro, who was convicted as a minor was given a reduced sentence, and upon his release, he sought the forgiveness of Maria’s mother. “She forgave him, saying that if Maria had forgiven him on her deathbed then she could not do less, and they attended Mass together the next day, receiving Holy Communion side by side”. He would attend the canonization in 1950.

I mention this in the spirit that in the jubilee year of mercy, there may be instances where forgiveness and mercy may be appropriate where it had once been thought a lost cause.

Peace be with you.

Follow me on Twitter@ryandavidprice

False selfies / St. Maria Goretti

Pope Francis to hold Mass at Mexican border-town – Texans totally pumped

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Just before Donald Trump puts up another ghastly bankruptcy inducing structure, Pope Francis will hold Mass at the cross border town of Ciudad Juarez, just a toss of a stone from El Paso, where local residents are reportedly, “super pumped”.

Texans will likely show their support for the Mass, which will be held at a stadium that seats 220,000 people, by taking up arms. The Mass will likely be seen as an act of aggression or an attempt at a, excuse the pun, a mass border-crossing event.  This will be their grandiose act of mercy for the year.

“During Mass, Pope Francis will undoubtedly call attention to many realities that are lived on both sides of our U.S. – Mexico border, particularly the plight of so many migrants and refugees fleeing violence and poverty in their home countries, in search of better lives for themselves and their children,” El Paso Bishop Mark J. Seitz said in a statement. “Pope Francis is expected to approach the U.S./Mexico divide as a symbol of the same journey taken by migrants. It will also provide him an opportunity to acknowledge the faithful on the El Paso side of the border.”

It feels safe to say at this point, that Francis is living up to his namesake, and despite the many who believe he is simply poking the bear at the border, most know that he is serving god and his children.

Peace be with you.

Follow me on Twitter@ryandavidprice

 

 

Pope Francis to hold Mass at Mexican border-town – Texans totally pumped