Chipping Away

Regarding “S-Chipping Away Pro-Life Protections?” (Sept. 16):

Some Catholic activists fear federal funds may soon go to contraceptive subsidies and sterilizations and open the door to state-funded abortions.

Guess what? The doors to abortion are open at Planned Parenthood facilities, have been for many years, thanks to our support via tax dollars. The federal government dishes out more than $270 million per year to Planned Parenthood. How much does your state add to this?

This money is icing on the cake, which brings in many more millions from the contraceptive and abortion services that Planned Parenthood supplies to women and girls, pre-teen and older.

In Aurora, Ill., Planned Parenthood has just completed a $7.5 million facility — some say the largest in North America. That still leaves them with one quarter billion dollars from one year’s Federal tax dollars alone. Not bad for a not-for-profit organization!

Christians are apathetic; put to shame by secular humanists. I challenge anyone to verify that more than 1% of Christians are actively involved in promoting the culture of life. Let’s start chipping away at Planned Parenthood.

Write to President Bush and as many legislators as you have postage stamps (go buy some more) and tell them you want them to stop giving you tax dollars to Planned Parenthood.

Your cost is $41 per 100 first class letters to 100 politicians, less if you use postcards. Encourage your fellow Christians to do the same.

Peter J. Hahn

Hampshire, Illinois

Editor’s note: The citizens of Aurora are doing their part. They, and like-minded citizens in neighboring towns, came together and are fighting the opening of Planned Parenthood’s mega-facility and, despite the business opening Oct. 2, will continue the battle.

Cut the Generalizations

I am writing in response to a quote in “Fact of Life: Homemakers at Heart” in the Sept 23 issue. This blurb about how working mothers would prefer to cut back on hours or stay home with their children started out fine with a reference to a study.

It caught my attention, since I do work outside of the home and have two children. I also have, on several occasions, wished to work less or not at all. However, it took a turn for the worse when it quoted author Deborah Collin Stephens saying, “Women are realizing that children aren’t just projects that you can go back to at certain moments” and “Children are a one-time shot.”

The first quote is completely offensive to mothers who do work outside of the home. It is a blatant generalization implying that if a mother works, her children are not her first priority and that she cannot possibly raise her children as well as a stay-at-home mom.

I have never thought of my children as some sort of hobby that I dabble in when I am not at work. Nor would I think that this attitude is held by the majority of mothers.

I am sure most mothers would agree that we do get one chance to get it right. However, I would also guess that most of your readers (including me) rely on God for this one chance. I am constantly praying for guidance in the decisions that affect our family, including my working outside of the home. It is clear to me that my life, and the lives of my husband and children, are directed down the path God wants us to be on.

If God wanted me to be at home instead of working, he would have provided my husband with a job that paid two times what it does with full benefits, he would not have blessed me with a flexible, fulfilling job, and with great daycare.

Finally, I am disappointed that the only quotes regarding the study are from an author who wrote a book with the title: This is Not the Life I Ordered. As Catholic Christians, we believe that we do not get to “order” our lives. Instead, God is in control and it is up to us to prayerfully ask for direction and to be open to his plan. I expect this kind of information from a secular newspaper, but not from a Catholic publication.

Holly Schurg

Traverse City, Michigan

Broader Objective

In your article “Rise of the New Catholic Colleges,” (Sept. 23) you mention that here at Belmont Abbey College we have recently launched the Envoy Institute for apologetics.

Actually, the Envoy Institute has a much broader objective than that — it is, in fact, is aimed at helping address the need mentioned by Richard Yanikoski that we need to reach the 85% of Catholic students who are going to schools that are not Catholic-sponsored. We hope to help young adults, Catholic and non-Catholic, at all colleges through this new effort to ‘bring hope to young adults through the Truth.’

The Envoy Institute at Belmont Abbey College ( will provide a community of support for newly independent young adults to help them develop a better discernment of how God wants them to develop and apply their personal talents to serve him in today’s society. It will bring the fullness of the truth to young adults in a way that is easily accessible, readily available, relevant, practical, and personal.

Kenneth L. Davison Jr.,

Vice President, College Relations,

Belmont Abbey College

Belmont, North Carolina

Movies’ ‘Ugh’ Factor

Regarding the 100 top pro-Catholic movies on your website ( /info/top_100_pro_catholic_movies/): I don’t mean to be snippy, but why not replace Sister Act (ugh!) or Angels in the Outfield (double ugh!) with The Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring, which is much more substantially Catholic than either one of these lamentable films?

The Exorcism of Emily Rose would also be a better choice than The Exorcist, which strips William Peter Blatty’s novel of most of its salvific character. Heck, even X-Men 2 is more Catholic than Sister Act. But kudos on including The Quiet Man. To End All Wars is another great one.

Joseph Breslin

Frederick, Maryland

Editor’s note: Our Top 100 Catholic Movies list, available under “Resources” at our web-site was the result of a poll of 1,000 online respondents. We specified movies that had explicit Catholic references. There are other lists that recommend movies with Catholic themes — this one recommended movies that explicitly pay homage to Catholic culture.

Ringside Protection

I read with interest your article, “Boxing: an Insult to the Brain” (Sept. 30). It is unfortunate that you obviously are unaware that in 1997 doctors from around the world formed the American Association of Professional Ringside Physicians (AAPRP) to address the dangers of boxing and mixed martial arts.

As such, we have developed many safety protocols to ensure the safety of the fighter both in the ring and after their careers are over.

Nevertheless, it should have been mentioned that American football and auto racing still rank higher in mortality and morbidity when compared to boxing. I sincerely believe that before writing such an article, you should have been better informed that we are working diligently to preserve life and ensure that these athletes have an organization looking out for their safety and well-being.

Injuries and deaths will happen in all sports regardless of the precautions taken. However, if we were to ban the sport and it were to take place in back rooms of bars, then there would be no one looking out for their safety. This needs to be considered when addressing this topic.

Dr. Michael Schwartz

Chairman AAPRP

Darien, Connecticut