Not a Slippery Slope, No Slope At All
Those who advocate caution before instituting a change to longstanding ethics and morals often warn that a small change or exception to a moral norm will lead to accelerated and uncontrolled change – the “slippery slope” argument.
Such caution is often derided by those favoring social change who consider the use of the slippery slope argument pandering to fear.
Just exactly how many slips must we take before the slippery slope argument gets more traction? Each and every time we find ourselves sliding down the slope at morally dizzying speeds, it is well to remember we had been warned, but of little solace.
Respect Life advocates have warned that physician assisted suicide, originally demanded for those in intractable pain with terminally fatal disease, will broaden to include non-life threatening conditions and be used without the patient’s consent. Moreover, the rights of health care providers to abstain from morally objectionable legal practices will come under assault. Recent popes and bishops have warned that permissive attitudes toward abortion will lead to a coarsening of social life and a commodification of the human person.
Right to Euthanasia?
The Netherlands are a social experiment in end-of-life practice. Let’s take a look at a recent case report. (Bioedge ) A 19 year old woman who suffered from systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE) since age 12 had, with her parents’ approval, applied for euthanasia under Dutch law. A date for the killing was set and was proceeding according to plan until the woman’s general health care practitioner withdrew her approval of the killing. The hospital at which the euthanasia was to occur then also withdrew its support. In despair, the young woman fled to her family’s apple orchard where she hung herself. Her family has filed a complaint against the general practitioner with the medical regulatory board in order that the physician not be able to “get away with” withdrawing consent for the killing.
Right to Life ?
Closer to home, the undercover videos showing top administrators of Planned Parenthood cunningly discussing remuneration for the bodies of aborted embryos with an eerie indifference to the lives of their “material,” have demonstrated that almost any protection or prohibition built into our permissive abortion laws can be artfully dodged. It would be hard to write a script which shows the commodification of human life in the abortion industry more clearly than these business lunch discussions with Planned Parenthood officials show. Many Americans now demand that the flow of federal tax dollars to such a morally repugnant industry be stemmed.
Take some time this weekend to research some of the dangers to our lives on this planet, not just in the ecosystem, but in our attitudes and legislation. Let us pray for a deeper respect for each unique human life and demand that such respect be reflected in the way we care for the unborn and the vulnerable in our society.
Congratulations to the students and faculty of Holy Cross School who today learned our school has been awarded a National Blue Ribbon by the US Department of Education.
Blue Ribbon Schools have "administrators and teachers who are dedicated to high standards of learning for all students, they engage in data collection and analysis to determine the efficacy of instruction and assessment, they have students who demonstrate academic excellence, and they undertake professional development to stay at the forefront of best practices."
The award was created in 1982, so it is no wonder that some of us older folks didn't grow up hearing about it, or even understand the award's significance. It had been discussed as a goal for Holy Cross for several years and when a Principal Search Committee was formed some years ago, achieving the Blue Ribbon designation was identified as a high priority for our new principal.
After important curricular reforms were instituted by our principal, Mr. William Belluzzi, and most importantly after he gained the trust and confidence of students, faculty and parents alike, the Blue Ribbon goal was set and was achieved this year.
We are grateful the school receives the wholehearted support of parents of our students and parishioners alike.We are proud of our school, its history, its faculty and students. May we always have the enthusiasm and resources to form young boys and girls in the faith of the Catholic Church and prepare them well for everything they will encounter on their life's journey.
Today is St. Michael's feast day and the first time we have had a stained glass window of this saint in our church on his feast day.
Our window shows him clad in the armor of God brandishing a sword of flame and vanquishing Lucifer. On the shield above his head is emblazoned "Quis ut Deus," "Who is like God?" The scale at the top of the window recalls Michael's traditional role in weighing the souls of the just for entry into heaven.
Beside the role of St. Michael defeating Lucifer and other rebellious angels for the battle of heaven, he has also been considered a kind of shuttle-angel, being sent to souls near death for a final opportunity to express sorrow for sins and be escorted to heaven.
Michael is invoked as the patron saint of those in the military, firefighters, police and the sick. Pope Leo XIII added a prayer of exorcism to St. Michael at the end of the mass.
St. Michael the Archangel defend us in battle. Be our protection against the wickedness and snares of the devil. May God rebuke him, we humbly pray, and do Thou, O Prince of the Heavenly Host cast into hell Satan and all the evils spirits who prowl about the world seeking the ruin of souls. Amen
All barrier free doors are located on the North side of Holy Cross Church. A sloped ramp leads to the doors in the exonarthex and the narthex (the gathering space and baptismal font) and a ramp also leads to the door in the north transept (opposite the St. Michael Window). Passengers may also be dropped off at this door.
Parking for four (4) handicapped access vans and autos is available in the courtyard alongside the rectory accessed from Ward Avenue.
Parishioners who can walk but not cope with stairs well, can also walk from any of the parking spaces nearest to these north doors for easier access to the church.
What a wonderful day for Holy Cross Parish as Bishop O'Connell dedicated our church and we gathered for Eucharist in the new church for the first time.
Please take or download a copy of the special bulletin for the Dedication which contains a brief history of the church project and information about each of the liturgical items in our church.
(Pictures to follow...I couldn't take pictures during the mass!)
The cross is the supreme and perfect act of the love of Jesus, who lays down his life for his friends.
Through the Cross, our whole life gains light, strength and hope. The Cross reveals the whole depth of love contained in the original design of the Creator; through the Cross, all is healed and brought to completion. That is why life lived with faith in Christ dead and risen becomes light.
Thank you to Fr. Michael Hall, Director of Worship for the Diocese of Trenton for his reassuring way with our altar servers and liturgical ministers who gathered last evening in the new church for a final look at the Rite of Dedication of A Church before the real thing on Saturday afternoon.
Many tasks have been accomplished over the last few days and today is no exception. It's funny how such zeal to accomplish a goal can only be applied as a deadline looms near.
Today and this evening is an important time to pray for the church and its people at Holy Cross. Even a quick prayer will sanctify the time it takes to remember and pray it:
We adore you O Christ and we praise you,
because by your Holy Cross you have redeemed the world.
Welcome parishioners and guests for this long anticipated and joyful day!
The Rite of Dedication and Mass begins at
in the church
A reception of light fare follows immediately
in the Parish Gymatorium
The main entry Church doors will open at 3:45 PM.
Guests are invited to gather in the garden courtyard until then.
- Barrier free parking spaces may be in high demand. There are four spaces in the courtyard behind the rectory, accessible by the driveway which runs between the church and the rectory. The doors on the north side of the church are barrier free.
- Parking spaces near the entry ramp door are located in the driveway alongside the rectory lawn and along the street on Ward Avenue. These are the best spots for avoiding stairs.
- Barrier free parking spaces are also designated in the main parking lot. Should the entry ramp be required, it can be accessed by taking the walkway through the garden past the Ward Avenue “old entrance” and around to the ramp on the north side of the church..
- Those requiring extra time for seating can be accommodated early through the entry door adjacent to the handicapped accessible courtyard alongside the rectory.
- Our donor memorial book will be on display but has not yet been inscribed with donor names. The memorial plaques will be in place under all the windows whose donors have completed their pledges.
- Nearly all the paver bricks have been installed in the prayer garden. Some of the more recently ordered bricks will be on view, but not yet installed in the path.
Almost 50 servers will participate in our Dedication Mass and help the liturgy move seamlessly from one prayerful moment to the next.
Fifty servers vested in procession will be quite a sight!
Our antique hand-carved angel has finally assumed its place above our main entry doors ready to call us to worship and guard our comings and goings. The angel and belvedere will be illuminated at night.
Recall that we rescued c. 1850 angel from the Netherlands. It looks to be carved of wood from the Black Forest. We had the trumpet gilded with gold leaf.
Welcome to your new home at Holy Cross!
Preparations to be certain the angel is "on the level." It and "on the beam" are interesting expressions. When my father was in radioman's school during WWII, his letters home were peppered with "on the beam," which I always assumed had something to do with either a balance beam or a construction beam. It's neither - the expression comes from an aircraft homing in on a radio navigation beam, akin to someone being "on the right track."
I didn't hear him use "on the beam" much when I was a kid, but he used "on the level" all the time."On the level" isn't really related, but means honest or straightforward. One can imagine Jesus saying of Nathaniel, "He's on the level." So was my father.