Writing a letter to your confirmation candidate

It seems that one of the biggest events in confirmation preparation in this country is the letters of support to be given to the confirmation candidates during their mandatory retreats.

I have three such letters saved on this blog:

Confirmation letter to my daughterConfirmation letter to my fourth sonConfirmation letter to to my third son
I've asked my children what they remember about the letter they got from me and their dad, and also what they remembered about the letters they received. 
The answer was not much, or at least nothing specific. In general they were happy to have gotten a bag full of letters and there was a sense of feeling loved and supported. I guess that's the main thing - for them to have a sense that this is an important step in their spiritual growth, and that people they know, love and respect have taken the time out of their lives to let them know that! So here are some tips on procuring and writing letters for young confirmation candidates. Start thinkin…

Political thought from this Catholic's perspective.

Two years ago, this country put the most liberal, leftist candidate into the office of President of the United States. Many of those voters were Catholic and quite a few were unashamed to put their views online. The only words that came to mind when I would read their blogs was, "Father forgive them, they do not know what they are doing." The truth was and still is that the American public had never had a candidate like Barack Obama before and I don't mean just because of his race. His entire education and philosophical formation was unlike any of his predecessors. The way he viewed our history and our way of life was just different. Maybe his wife said it best when she said during the campaign that she had always been ashamed of this country. I think her husband shared that sentiment.

The people I talk to in real life weren't ashamed of America. They had their own reasons for voting for him. One voted for Obama because she just wanted us to get out of the war. Another friend because she was so excited about the possibility of getting an African American president and how that would unite the country. (It didn't and it won't - at least not with this president). Many like her, I think, were caught up in Obama mania. Still another would have voted for anyone but a Republican because of the daily hammering by the news media. The tanking of the economy switched a lot of  voterss (although if you really want to get technical, it wasn't conservative policies and practices that brought us into this economic mess). Democratic friends voted a Democratic ticket because that's what they do - I wondered if they realized that this was not their typical "Democratic" candidate.  This was not Bill Clinton 2.0. He's more like Jimmy Carter on steroids.

In recent days, the president's rhetoric has not sounded as if he wants to reach across the aisle and work with Republicans. It sounds to me as if he will continue to try to implement his agenda regardless of how the congress is stacked against him.  The good news that a stalemate in Washington will prevent more damage from being done I hope.

Recently Cardinal Designate, Raymond Burk reiterated what many in the Catholic Blogosphere have been saying for years- the most basic issue is the vote for life. Nothing supercedes that, nothing is more important than that. A Catholic in good conscience can never vote otherwise; a Catholic who feels that they must vote otherwise because of conscience has not formed their conscience properly - It's really that simple.

However, the church is very, very clear about what the top priorities in deciding on a candidate should be and the right to life of the unborn is the top priority.  Although many issues relevant, not all are of equal importance. Pope John Paul II and Pope Benedict have referenced again and again the importance of the rights of the unborn as being of primary importance.

Some will say and have said that no one has the right to "judge other Catholics."  My reply is that the spiritual works  of mercy are still part of the Catholic faith. They are in the catechism. There is no "jugement" in simply following the directives of the catechism- which is the sure norm for Catholics.

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