Bulletin (January 30, 2005)

At most I see one movie a month when I get together with a couple of priest friends. And, I have to admit, that the three of us are not the most discriminating moviegoers. We tend to choose a matinee that is at a convenient time and that would not embarrass us if we ran into parishioners, which happens often enough. Except for Ray, a film about singer Ray Charles, I have not seen any of those nominated for an Oscar. Still, it is hard to ignore all the “hype” around the Oscars. Film critic, Barbara Nicolosi, made the following observation:

So, this year, the top Oscar nominations have gone to…

…a movie that makes a hero out of a man who murders his adopted daughter.

…a movie that makes a hero out of an abortionist.

…a movie that makes a hero out of a discredited researcher who was obsessed with sex and encouraged many others to experiment with various perversions.

…a movie that lionizes a billionaire narcissist who died insane from syphilis.

…a movie that suggests it is funny when an engaged man sets off for a week of debauchery before his marriage with his drunkard best friend.

…a movie that glamorizes four alley cats dressed as beautiful people who fornicate and commit adultery with each other, and indulge in various sexual perversions until the movie ends.

…a movie that makes a hero out of a paraplegic in despair who wants to kill himself.

While the movies might be well done technically, the glamorization of such destructive behavior is a sad commentary on the state of our culture. The problem is not the depiction of evil: great drama like Oepidus Rex, Hamlet and Dante’s Inferno depict evil – but they also show the consequences. Hollywood, on the other hand, tends to make light of destructive behavior, even glamorize it. For example, the famous sex researcher Alfred Kinsey brought great misery on himself, his wife and his close associates, but Hollywood tends to gloss over the more unpleasant realities. (Read James Jones’ Private/Public Life if you want an unflinching portrait of the hell he created for himself and others.)

On the other hand, there is a deeper culture in our country than what is represented by the Oscars. Hollywood virtually ignored Mel Gibson’s The Passion of the Christ, yet it was one of the most popular movies ever. The film impacted many people on a profound level. I noticed it last year in Lenten confessions. People commented to me that the movie helped them appreciate how much Jesus loves them and what a terrible thing sin is. As we begin Lent in ten days, it would be worthwhile to find a quiet time to watch the video with your family or by yourself.

Another good resolution for Lent is to attend the Father Corapi retreat. He will be with us beginning on Friday evening, February 18, and continuing all day Saturday through the 5 p.m. Mass. Registration forms are available at the church entrances, in our parish office and on our parish website: http://www.holyfamilyparish.net/ Here is some basic information about Fr. John Corapi:

Father is a perpetually professed priest and member of the Society of Our Lady of the Most Holy Trinity.

The pillars of father's preaching are basically three:

• Love for and a relationship with the Blessed Virgin Mary,which leads us into a vibrant and loving relationship with Jesus Christ.

• Great love and reverence for the Most Holy Eucharist--from Holy Mass to adoration of the Blessed Sacrament.

• An uncompromising love for and obedience to the Holy Father and the teaching of the Magisterium of the Church.

Father Corapi's audio and video series on the Catechism of the Catholic Church entitled The Teaching of Jesus Christ has been widely acclaimed and is used throughout the world as a course in religious education and catechesis. The essence of Father's message is the essential message of Jesus Christ. It is Good News: a message of truth and goodness, love and mercy. It is above all else a message of hope.

En solamente diez días comenzamos el tiempo de la Cuaresma. El 9 de febrero es miércoles de ceniza. Es una temporada bien ocupada, pero llena de bendiciones. Quisiera mencionar algunas actividades de estos días.

Este fin de semana tenemos recepciones después de todas las misas para la Campaña Capital. Les voy a invitar al salón parroquial para una pequeña presentación sobre este proyecto. Necesito la participación de todo feligrés para realizar este sueño para el futuro de nuestra parroquia y nuestros niños.

Esta semana es Semana de Escuelas Católicas. Habrá una “Open House” (casa abierta) el día miércoles en la noche para saber mas sobre los programas de nuestra escuela parroquial. Les invito considerar la posibilidad que su hijo vaya a la Escuela de Sagrada Familia.

Este año la Presentación del Señor (Nuestra Señora de la Candelaria) cae en el día miércoles, 2 de febrero. El día jueves es primer jueves. Como siempre habrá confesiones desde las 6 p.m. hasta las 8 p.m. El viernes habrá misa en español a las 7:30 p.m.

La semana siguiente comenzamos la Cuaresma con la recepción de la ceniza. Durante el día habrá varios servicios, incluyendo una misa en español, para comenzar la temporada sagrada.

El 18 y 19 de febrero, el Padre John Corapi estará aquí otra vez para dar un retiro cuaresmal. Sus presentaciones son en inglés pero valen la pena, especialmente para los jóvenes. Durante el retiro, que comienza viernes en la noche y sigue hasta las 5 p.m. el día sábado, habrá plena oportunidad para confesiones.