Thursday, September 15, 2011

Your Catholic Weekend Guide no. I

Many web sites, to prove their usefulness, offer guides on how to live your life, win at your favorite football game, or how to craft the perfect bonzai tree. We at want to guide you as well, so we're introducing the Catholic Weekend Guide, your guide to making the most out of your Friday to Sunday.

My wife and I have a party to attend on Sunday. A birthday party. You know you're old when the majority of your parties end up being birthday parties. The kid loves video games, so we'll probably go to the Game Traders Club and get him a gift card. Screw Gamestop. I go there on occasion, but only when I have no other choice. And by no other choice, I mean bored and it's right next to the clothing store my wife wants to shop in.

Does anyone outside of college even have non-birthday parties any more? I always hear about people having costume parties and things like that, but I have yet to see or hear of anyone who actually throws things like that. The closest thing I can think of are WWE and UFC pay-per-view gatherings, but I consider those to be get-togethers rather than actual parties.

Another sign that life on TV is more fun than life in 4D.

Anyways, here's your Catholic Weekend Guide on everything inside and outside of the Church. It's self-explanatory, and I hope to God someone reads this. Should be fun to write each week.

Film in wide-release with positive Christian overtones/messages: 
The Lion King 
Rated G by MPAA, A-1 (all ages) by United States Conference of Catholic Bishops.
It's only available for two weeks. And besides, movies like this are fun to see on the big-screen again. Makes you feel like a kid again. I'm not sure about the prices, but I remember going to see the re-released Toy Story 1 and 2 a few years ago, and it cost me about $10 for both movies. I imagine that a re-released Lion King, even if it's in 3D, will probably be cheaper than the other movies showing.

Plus, seeing Lion King is a great way to teach your kids about responsibility and growing up. And know that sometimes grownups are bad and say things to you to make you feel horrible even though it's not true.

Film on basic cable with positive Christian overtones
The Green Mile (Fox, 12:30 p.m. ET)
Rated R by MPAA, AIII (Adults) by USCCB
One of my favorite movies and books. The Green Mile isn't for the type that loves seeing prisoners fry that supports capital punishment. Very uplifting Tom Hanks film that shows that every person has value and worth, even if they are convicted of the most horrible crimes imaginable. While not named specifically (much like the book of Esther), I think God definitely has a presence in this film. He has given each of us a gift, and nobody should waste it.

My Catholic football predictions
As a note, please don't use any of this information if you make a bet. If this insight could get you rich, I wouldn't be working customer service as a day-job.

• Boston College over Duke (If you never bet on Duke football, you'll live a successful life)
• Notre Dame over Michigan State (Notre Dame too good to go 0-3 this year)
• Duquesne over Valparaiso (Someone in Pittsburgh has to win a football game)
• Fordham over Columbia (Fordham sounds cooler than Columbia, etymologically speaking)
• Holy Cross over Harvard (my conscience won't allow me to select Harvard for anything positive)

Beautiful Catholic Church of the Week that you should try to go visit

The Cathedral of San Agustin in the Diocese of Laredo
That's a beautiful church right there. $675,000 was used to restore the church from 1989 to 1994, and they actually offer confessions 15 minutes before Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday and Friday's daily mass. But wow, look at that architecture! Now that is an amazing, gothic style church. If I lived in Laredo, I'd walk by it every day.

Best Catholic Blog to read on the toilet this weekend.

I'll man up and admit it: I do a lot of reading on the toilet. Mostly Sports Illustrated and those interesting Yahoo! feature stories on the front page. But lately, I need to get more Catholicism in my life, on and off the pot.

My recommendation to read this weekend? OK, so maybe I'm biased toward a guy named Dustin who writes about faith and family, but I found his post on paying off $54,500 in debt in less than four years very inspiring. I will definitely make time to read this more of this blog, even without a porcelain seat. I just hope he finds the time to eliminate that ghastly Papyrus font that haunts his web site. Ewww Papyrus!

What your priest WON'T tell you this weekend.

I'm no theologian. But if I was given this week's Gospel reading, here's what I'd tell my congregation, in an extremely short but poignant Homily. Which means that your priest will probably tell you something different and probably better. Oh, and the reading is from Matthew 20:1-16a

(clears throat)

God is a fair God. God loves each of us. While it's great that we all have God's love, a lot of times it sucks. Because God treats all of us the same, there are many times when I think that he shouldn't be as fair to others based on their behavior. In the parable, men who worked all day for the landowner. They were probably faithful workers, busting their humps for the boss. And what happens? These guys off the street do half the amount of work and get paid the exact same thing!

I'd probably be mad too. Nothing is more annoying than hearing some person yammer on about how horrible of a person they were, only to find God's grace and magically turn everything around. I gotta be faithful, but this person gets to go out, have sex with thousands of women, but then they get to hop on the bandwagon and get the same forgiveness that I've appreciated for years?

Unfortunately, we can't call B.S. on God's love and forgiveness. This parable is a reminder that no matter how we conduct our lives, God loves each of us the same. And whether we were always faithful, or wait until the last second to seek his mercy, He's going to treat all of us the same.

One look at my ugly sins, and I immediately realize what a blessing that is.

I found a Catholic on Youtube!
It's hard to believe sometimes, but there are Catholics that have embraced Youtube! Each week we scour Youtube to find a real Catholic who believes in the video format and share their goodness with other children of God. Here's this week's find!

Word of caution: Make sure your speakers aren't turned up when you hit play. That girl's voice is extremely high-pitched. And talk about a genius shirt: A little on the cocky side, but it's pure genius.

Good explanation on how to become Catholic, but my only pet peeve (and this goes for anyone who is giving an explanation of their beliefs) is that she spends too much time explaining that she doesn't want to offend anyone with her beliefs. No need to apologize for what you believe in. And let's be honest: a pretty girl telling you how to become Catholic is more appealing than a crusty old man telling you the same thing.

A tweet to leave you by

When you're a 31 year-old man sharing DMs about how All My Children should end, maybe it's time to go to bed. Good night, y'all. #AMCTue Sep 13 05:12:59 via web


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