19 Whose offspring can be honorable? Human offspring. Those who FEAR the LORD are honorable offspring. Whose offspring can be disgraceful? Human offspring. Those who transgress the commandment are disgraceful offspring. 20 Among relatives their leader is honored; but whoever fears God is honored among God’s people. 21 The beginning of acceptance is the fear of the Lord; the beginning of rejection, effrontery and pride. 22 Resident alien, stranger, foreigner, pauper—their glory is the fear of the LORD. 23 It is not right to despise anyone wise but poor, nor proper to honor the lawless. 24 The prince, the ruler, the judge are in honor; but none is greater than the one who fears God.
By the action of Jesus Christ and the grace of the Eucharist we are no longer human offspring but the very offspring of God.
As His offspring we radiate a presence; it affects our whole being. The indwelling of the Holy Spirit is real.
God’s Holy presence changes us physically, mentally and in a deeper sense within the heart. We are new people. In a similar way Moses face radiated this presence so much his face had to be covered because its glowing terrified the Israelites. In earlier postings we discussed how Sarah; Abraham’s wife was exquisitely beautiful at an advanced age.
Those who radiate the presence of God seek His will. They have the right intention giving all things to God. They avoid mortal sin and obey the laws of God. They cherish God in their hearts and seek to do those things that please God. At times we find ourselves so engrossed with our day-to-day activities and worry about the mundane; much like Saint Martha forgetting “the better part”. If we are to radiate His presence we must be in His presence. Perhaps today would be a good day to develop the practice of putting one item on your daily “To Do” list that you know will please God.
Catechism of the Catholic Church
II. THE VOCATION TO CHASTITY cont.
Chastity and homosexuality
2357 Homosexuality refers to relations between men or between women who experience an exclusive or predominant sexual attraction toward persons of the same sex. It has taken a great variety of forms through the centuries and in different cultures. Its psychological genesis remains largely unexplained. Basing itself on Sacred Scripture, which presents homosexual acts as acts of grave depravity, tradition has always declared that "homosexual acts are intrinsically disordered." They are contrary to the natural law. They close the sexual act to the gift of life. They do not proceed from a genuine affective and sexual complementarity. Under no circumstances can they be approved.
2358 The number of men and women who have deep-seated homosexual tendencies is not negligible. This inclination, which is objectively disordered, constitutes for most of them a trial. They must be accepted with respect, compassion, and sensitivity. Every sign of unjust discrimination in their regard should be avoided. These persons are called to fulfill God's will in their lives and, if they are Christians, to unite to the sacrifice of the Lord's Cross the difficulties they may encounter from their condition.
2359 Homosexual persons are called to chastity. By the virtues of self-mastery that teach them inner freedom, at times by the support of disinterested friendship, by prayer and sacramental grace, they can and should gradually and resolutely approach Christian perfection.
There are a lot of websites that deal with the subject of chastity. One such is Jason Evert’s author of several books on the subject:
Human Trafficking Awareness
Human Trafficking Awareness Day is dedicated to raising awareness of sexual slavery and human trafficking worldwide. Today, there are between 21-30 million people enslaved in the world, more than at any time in human history. Every day, modern slavery can be recognized: children become soldiers; young women are forced into prostitution and migrant workers exploited in the workforce. Human Trafficking Awareness Day seeks to end this slavery, return rights to individuals and make the world a safer place for all inhabitants. Human Trafficking Awareness Day started in 2007, when the U.S. Senate designated January 11th as National Human Trafficking Awareness Day in the hopes of raising awareness to combat human trafficking. It began as a U.S. initiative, and the United Nations has started to highlight this topic and work towards global awareness with days such as International Day for the Abolition of Slavery.
Human Trafficking Awareness Facts & Quotes
· The most common form of human trafficking is sexual exploitation, accounting for 79% of human trafficking victims. These victims of sexual exploitation are predominantly women and girls.
· According to UNICEF, 2 million children are estimated to be trafficking victims of sex trade each year. 20% of traffic victims are children.
· The average age of a girl being forced into the US domestic sex slavery market is 13.
· The average cost of a slave around the world is $90.
· It is slavery in the modern age. Every year thousands of people, mainly women and children, are exploited by criminals who use them for forced labor or the sex trade. No country is immune. Almost all play a part, either as a source of trafficked people, transit point or destination. - United Nations Secretary-General, Ban Ki-moon.
Human Trafficking Awareness Top Events and Things to Do
§ Talk to children about strangers and make sure they memorize important addresses and phone numbers.
§ Save 888-373-7888 to your phone. This is number to the National Human Trafficking Resources Hotline.
§ Make a donation to an organization fighting human trafficking.
§ Learn the signs and indicators of human trafficking so that you can learn to recognize it and report it. US Homeland Security offers a training online free of charge.
Watch a movie about human trafficking. Our
picks: Taken (2008), Trade (2007), Human Trafficking (2005), The Pink Room
(2011), Nefarious (2011) and Lilya 4-ever (2002).
Know the Signs
indicators of human trafficking is key to identifying victims and helping them
Look for someone who:
1. Is not free to leave or come and go as he/she wishes
2. Is unpaid, paid very little, or paid only through tips
3. Works excessively long and/or unusual hours
4. Is not allowed breaks or suffers under unusual restrictions at work
5. Owes a large debt and is unable to pay it off
6. Was recruited through false promises concerning the nature and conditions of his/her work
7. High security measures exist in work and/or living locations (e.g. opaque windows, boarded-up windows, bars on windows, barbed wire, security cameras, etc.)
8. Is fearful, anxious, depressed, submissive, tense or nervous/paranoid
9. Exhibits unusually fearful or anxious behavior after mention of law enforcement
10. Avoids eye contact
11. Lacks health care
12. Appears malnourished
13. Shows signs of physical and/or sexual abuse, physical restraint, confinement or torture
14. Has few or no personal possessions
15. Is not in control of his/her own money, has no financial records or bank account
16. Is not in control of his/her own identification documents (ID or passport)
17. Is not allowed or able to speak for themselves (a third party may insist on being present and/or translating)
18. Claims of just visiting and inability to clarify where he/she is staying/address
19. Lack of knowledge of whereabouts and/or do not know what city he/she is in
20. Loss of sense of time
21. Has numerous inconsistencies in his/her story
Party at Winterskol in Aspen
Raise a toast to winter in Aspen’s annual Winterskol Festival. The winter tradition is more than 60 years strong and was started by a lodge owner who wanted to enliven the Aspen winter season following Christmas. Today, the four-day winter fest includes a snow sculpture competition, a soup cook-off and a downhill race with apple strudel at the finish line.
Tuesday: Litany of St. Michael the Archangel
· Plan winter fun: