Wednesday, September 9, 2009

Today on Kresta - Sept. 9, 2009

Talking about the "things that matter most" on Sept. 9

3:00 – Kresta Comments

3:20 – Listening to the Obama Health Care Speech with a Pro-Life Ear

Tonight President Obama will address a joint session of Congress to continue his push for comprehensive health care reform. The White House is continuing to insist that the plan will not contain tax-payer funded abortion, while independent groups like continue to say that those statements are misleading at best. We talk to Fr. Frank Pavone about how to listen to the President’s speech tonight with a pro-life ear.

3:40 - When Life Doesn’t Go Your Way: Hope for Catholic Women Facing Disappointment and Pain
When life doesn't go our way, how do we respond in faith? Katrina Zeno encourages us to have a heart of hope, one that presses into God and stays connected instead of drawing away during difficult times. Questions for reflection and discussion after each chapter make this book perfect for women's faith-sharing groups.

4:00 – Kresta Comments

4:20 – From Atheist to Catholic
When she was 26, she had never once believed in God, not even as a child. She was a content atheist and thought it was simply obvious that God did not exist. She thought that religion and reason were incompatible, and was baffled by why anyone would believe in God. After a few years in the Bible Belt, she became vocally anti-Christian. Imagine the surprise to find her today, just a few years later, a practicing Catholic who loves her faith. Jennifer Fulwiler tells her story.

5:00 – Kresta Comments

5:40 – Group Asks Court to Reconsider Removing Girl from Home School
A New Hampshire court's decision to order a 10-year-old home-schooled girl to attend public school is coming under attack from some social conservatives and religious freedom advocates. The Alliance Defense Fund has asked a family court judge to reconsider her July 14 decision to send the girl, identified in court documents as "Amanda," to a public school in Meredith, N.H. The ADF noted that the girl was described in court documents as "academically promising" and interactive with her peers. "The court, in its own order, recognized this girl is performing well academically. So why are we changing her school environment?" they asked. The girl's parents, Brenda Voydatch and Martin Kurowski, divorced shortly after her birth in 1999. According to court documents, Kurowski wants his daughter to attend public schools because he believes home-schooling deprives her of socialization skills. A guardian ad litem, essentially a fact finder for the court, agreed, and that recommendation was approved by Judge Lucinda Sadler. We talk to the attorney from ADF on this case, Doug Napier.

1 comment:

  1. Re: How Jennifer Fulwiler came to believe in God

    Jennifer, the contented atheist, goes to a liberal college and starts thinking: Maybe I'm not just a mass of random chemical reactions (because the implications of that are very scary); so, I thought, maybe it's not OK to kill off the weaker members of the species; but I can't really, truly defend that, so I need an objective moral code, one that will make it OK to kill pigs, but not OK to kill a newborn child; then I met a smart guy who believed in God ("I was shocked!") and I married him; then I had a kid, and wow! -- the love; now I can humble myself, and I just want to know the truth.

    Jennifer has reached the mountaintop of truth. So Al wants to talk about atheists and why they're so f'd up. Al notes that atheists have an impulse to be the smartest guy in the room. But why all this pride if they are materialists who know that the final word on things is Death -- darkness, not light; who know we are only a random collocation of atoms and ultimately don't even control our minds?

    Jennifer, on top of the mountain, puts it in perspective: Looking back, I realize that I didn't want to think about it. I knew I was going to disappear into nothing when I die, so I might as well maximize the pleasure right here, right now. If you're an atheist, all you have is your own ego, so you become very self-absorbed and the ego becomes your god. I would ask my atheist friends why we all shouldn't just kill ourselves right now? [What happened to Jennifer's ego?] Their answer? Antidepressants. But I never found a good answer. The only philosophy I felt [that's right -- felt] was fatalism: utter despair. So I distracted myself with career, friends and parties.

    So much for the contented atheist.

    It's a bit confusing. On her blog, Jennifer states that she was generally happy as an atheist, but at nightfall she would feel fear, loneliness, helplessness and discord. Sometimes she felt the "cold terror" of fully understanding the implications of her own mortality. She also writes about doubts and spiritual dry spells during her conversion, and wonders why she didn't revert back to the "comfort of atheism," while acknowledging having "a heart where envy, resentment, anger, selfishness, and all sorts of other nasty sentiments lived." And remember that smart guy Jennifer met who believed in God and eventually became her husband? She told Al that it was he who got her to thinking that all the great men of science, like Galileo and Newton, believed in God. On her blog, however, she attributes that story to her grandfather. She once casually asked her grandfather if he believed in God, and she was surprised when he said yes. "But he's so smart!" she thought. I don't see how she could have gotten her husband mixed up with her grandfather.

    I think Jennifer hung out with the wrong kind of atheists. I'll note that the Nobel Prize winning atheist physicist Richard Feynman had an enormous zest for life and died from cancer at the age of 69, that the 68 year old atheist biologist Richard Dawkins has said he considers it a great privilege to be alive, and that the Nobel Prize winning atheist physicist Steven Weinberg keeps plugging along at the age of 76. Why don't Dawkins and Weinberg just kill themselves?

    About the smartest guy in the room business. I would love to be a fly on the wall in a room with Al Kresta, Regis Martin, Scott Hahn, Benjamin Wiker, Marcus Grodi, Richard Dawkins, Christopher Hitchens, and Steven Weinberg to see who tries to be the smartest guy in the room.

    Just some random thoughts.