Slow blogging again this week...my mom and sisters were here for a visit, which was all too short, and left this morning. I will miss them terribly. It is difficult to be on the opposite side of the country from one's family.
Bleg: Can anyone tell me about good Catholic-based Bible study guides? My sister is engaged to a fine young man, who has been raised in the Baptist tradition but seems interested in Catholicism. While she was here on her visit she asked some great questions about the meaning of various Bible passages, and expressed some interest to me in learning more about Scripture. I can only guess that this interest was sparked by conversations between her and her fiance. I think it would be nice for them both to have a Scripture study that is firmly grounded in Catholic teaching. I'll ask around on Catholic Answers for suggestions as well.
I took them to Chicago for the weekend and while watching TV in the hotel it was difficult to escape constant coverage of Michael Jackson's death. Like many children of the 80s/90s I can remember "Thriller" and his other hits during that time. For her part, my mom and her brothers grew up loving American music and the Jackson Five were part of that as well. For the majority of my life, however, MJ was a grotesque figure, more "famous for being famous" than anything else. His sporadic "comeback" attempts always seemed to simply fizzle out.
But this was hardly intended to be a Michael Jackson memorial post. I have always loathed "celebrity worship" and it seems especially disgusting in this case considering Jackson's apparent pedophilia. No, I feel that the real innocent victims are Michael's children. Conceived by means of a sperm donor and a surrogate mom, deprived of a normal childhood with mother and father, forced to wear masks and veils in public, and now losing the only parent they have known at a young age.
Money can buy anything and in this modern world, that includes children. Their connection with their ersatz dad was not genetic, but financial - he paid to have them brought into this world. How sad is that? To me it seems an act of monstrous selfishness - not unlike the "Octomom" and her actions. I am sure Jackson did not see it as such - rather perceiving the children as something he needed to make his life "complete." But no good can come of it when we reduce persons to objects and means to our own ends. During a discussion over the "custody battle" for Jackson's children on Fox, a commentator observed that "people need to realize children aren't property - you can't will them to someone." I thought that was very telling. I pray Jackson's children will have at least some semblance of a normal, stable life now.