A joyfully Franciscan view of Catholic life, inspired by St. Clare (Santa Chiara) of Assisi!

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Chiara Offreduccio (St. Clare) was born in 1194. It is said that when her mother had Chiara in her womb, an angel appeared to her and said, "your child will be a light that will illuminate the world!" Hence, her mother named the child Chiara, which means "light. As G.K. Chesterton put it, St. Clare was a romantic figure just like Juliet was. However, instead of running away from her family in order to be with an earthly man, Clare gave up everything and ran away from her family for the love of her Savior!

Saturday, January 26, 2008

A "Wilde" Conversion Story

Being sick for the past few days means that I’ve been doing a lot of “resting”- aka, reading and watching TV (after all, St. Clare is the patroness of television!) Given a choice between watching the uber-offensive and degrading Miss America “pageant” (which is just about as classy as its Las Vegas location),and the 1952 version of Oscar Wilde’s The Importance of Being Earnest, I chose the latter. After watching Earnest and having seen adaptations of a couple of other his plays, I can’t deny that Wilde was an amazingly talented artist with a dazzling wit. Wilde’s incisive humor, truly a God-given talent, is generally free of the baseness to which many modern-day comedians have resorted. I had also heard rumors that Wilde ultimately converted to Catholicism on his deathbed, despite having led a scandalous life. A little internet research tonight confirmed my premonition of Wilde’s conversion to Catholicism.

In the spirit of my December post on Edif Piaf, Oscar Wilde’s conversion is another case of a tormented individual who ultimately experienced God’s love and mercy via the Catholic Church. “Oscar Wilde, Roman Catholic” is a great article by Jeffrey Tucker, who gives a great analysis of the Catholic undertones in Wilde’s artistic works and recounts the touching story of his deathbed conversion. Indeed, Wilde’s conversion is a confirmation that Christ’s love and mercy is open to everyone and anyone that opens their heart to Him and His Church!

Friday, January 11, 2008

A Truly AMAZING Movie...

I seldom cry during movies (not counting the movies that are so awfully bad that they bring me to tears). It’s even more rare for me to cry during a comedy film- the only time I remember crying during a comedy was when I went to see Sweet Home Alabama during my first semester at college, and I wept because it reminded me how I was homesick for the South. Putting all that aside, the movie that I went to see yesterday marks the first comedy that was so beautiful, so powerful, so moving, that it actually brought tears to my eyes.

That movie was Juno, not to be mistaken with the vengeful Roman goddess after which the title character is named. You couldn’t really ask for more out of a movie- witty dialogue, offbeat but uproarious humor, an admirable heroine, innovative direction, an eclectic soundtrack, superb acting….and most of all, a strongly PRO-LIFE message. All of those strengths blend together so well, and the end result is a charming film that has universal appeal and which manages to drive home the message of the sanctity of life without being at all “preachy.”

Juno’s success is a landmark for the pro-life movement, partly because the film has reached such broad audiences. Indeed, some of my friends who never really thought about those kinds of issues were very moved by this movie’s message.

Here is a review and synopsis of the film- don’t let the blurb about profanity, nudity, crudeness, etc. scare you off from a wonderful movie…I really don’t remember seeing any nudity or hearing all that much profanity. So PLEASE PLEASE support the pro-life cause by going to see this AMAZING movie and taking LOTS of friends with you!

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