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FRI-SAT-SUN      June 4-6, 1999      SECTION ONE       vol 10, no. 108

To print out entire text of Today's issue, print this section as well as SECTION TWO and SECTION THREE


How the media monkeys around with the truth!

      In this weekend's editorial we question aloud the media's commitment to truth in light of the fact that they are slanting the news to show the United States in such a favorable light that they have exaggerated the situation and painted a picture that doesn't exist. Now we hear of a possible peace accord in the Balkans which was supposedly authored by the US. Nothing could be further from the truth for the real architects of this peace will have been the Russians and the Vatican, but the western media stubbornly refuses to give credit where credit's due. For why this is true, as documented in this weekend's commentary, The proverbial vicious circle with the emphasis on vicious! , click on CATHOLIC PewPOINT.

The proverbial vicious circle with the emphasis on vicious!

Michael Cain, editor


Star Wars Episode One continues in hyperspeed leaving all other movies in the dust

    In the second week the blockbuster Star Wars' "Episode One - The Phantom Menace" continues to eclipse all competition more than doubling its nearest competitor the newly released "Notting Hill" and quadruppling the third place entry, burying "The Mummy" and the rest of the top ten. The biggest flop was "The Love Letter" which dropped from a weak fifth in its debut last week to last place this week and most likely will drop out of sight next week. Many attribute the low turnout to the inclusion of avowed, blatant lesbian Ellen DeGeneres participation in the movie for many have made it a point to boycott anything she is in as a protest of the sinful way of life she openly promotes. For the Top Ten review for the first week of June, click on MOVIES AND MORALS

TOP TEN MOVIES FOR THE FIRST WEEK OF JUNE

  • 1.   STAR WARS: EPISODE ONE - THE PHANTOM MENACE


  • 2.   NOTTING HILL
      (Universal)    $27.7 million in one week:
         Because of an off-screen sexual encounter, some crude references, occasional profanity and minimal rough language, the U.S. Catholic Conference classification is A-III -- adults. The Motion Picture Association of America rating is PG-13 -- parents are strongly cautioned that some material may be inappropriate for children under 13. "Notting Hill" is a gauzy romantic comedy in which a Hollywood movie star (played by Julia Roberts) and a timid London bookseller (Hugh Grant) fall in love but he finds himself too intimidated by her fame to pursue the relationship. The contrived crowd-pleaser is long on stunning smiles and sugary sentiment but short on realistic romance. May-June 1999.


  • 3.   THE MUMMY
      (Universal)    $117.2 million in four weeks:
          Because of recurring stylized violence and fleeting partial nudity, the U.S. Catholic Conference classification is A-III -- adults. The Motion Picture Association of America rating is PG-13 -- parents are strongly cautioned that some material may be inappropriate for children under 13. "The Mummy" is a spirited horror adventure set in 1920's Egypt where a treasure hunting Yank (played by Brendan Fraser) is confronted by a revived 3,000 year-old mummy whose evil powers seemingly know no bounds. The lavishly shot action movie is stuffed with spooky special effects and comical moments that downplay horror in favor of rousing, old-fashioned entertainment. May 1999


  • 4.   ENTRAPMENT
      (20th Century Fox)    $69.6 million in five weeks
          Because of a romanticized view of crime, fleeting violence and a few instances of rough language and profanity, the U.S. Catholic Conference classification is A-IV, adults, with reservations. The Motion Picture Association of America rating is PG-13 -- parents are strongly cautioned that some material may be inappropriate for children under 13. "Entrapment" is a mindless escapist caper in which a wily insurance investigator (played by Catherine Zeta-Jones) appears to join forces with the world's craftiest art thief (played by Sean Connery) to nail him red-handed. The glossy fantasy of double-crossing daredevils is sluggishly directed which limits the suspense. April 1999


  • 5.   THE THIRTEENTH FLOOR
      (Sony)    $4.3 million in one week
         Because of sporadic nasty violence, some sexual innuendo, intermittent rough language and a few instances of profanity, the U.S. Catholic Conference classification is A-III -- adults. The Motion Picture Association of America rating is R -- restricted. "The Thirteenth Floor" is a densely plotted sci-fi thriller involving a murder in parallel worlds, including Los Angeles 1937 and the present, with characters slipping between dimensions as they search for one true reality. The convoluted tale plays intriguing mind games with viewers until the weakly constructed climax goes over the top then ends unconvincingly. May-June 1999.


  • 6.   THE MATRIX
      (Warner Brothers)     $154.8 million in nine weeks
          Because of excessive violence and recurring profanity, the U.S. Catholic Conference classification, O -- morally offensive. Motion Picture Association of America rating, R -- restricted The Matrix is a convoluted sci-fi tale in which a tiny band of cyber rebels led by Keanu Reeves and Laurence Fishburne do battle with virtually indestructible humanoid killers from the 22nd centry. The action movie's violence is glorified, glamorized and made to look exciting with a dazzling array of eyepopping special effects. April 1999


  • 7.   A MIDSUMMER NIGHT'S DREAM
      (Fox Searchlight)    $11.3 million in three weeks
          Because of romantic complications and, fleeting nudity, the U.S. Catholic Conference classification is A-III -- adults. The Motion Picture Association of America rating is PG-13 -- parents are strongly cautioned that some material may be inappropriate for children under 13. William Shakespeare's "A Midsummer Night's Dream" is an uneven adaptation of the Bard's comedy in which forest fairy Puck causes all manner of romantic upheaval overnight by casting spells on a quartet of mismatched young lovers, a hammy actor (played by Kevin Kline) and fairy queen Michelle Pfeiffer. Not all the cast excel in articulating Shakespearean dialogue but the fanciful and luminous visuals look sprinkled with, fairy dust. May 1999


  • 8.   NEVER BEEN KISSED
      (Fox)    $48.9 million in eight weeks
          Because of implied affairs and sexual references, a sex-education scene involving condoms and occasional profanity, the U.S. Catholic Conference classification is A-III -- adults. The Motion Picture Association of America rating is PG-13 -- parents are strongly cautioned that some material may be inappropriate for children under 13. "Never Been Kissed" is a bogus romantic comedy in which 25-year old rookie reporter Drew Barrymore goes undercover as a high school senior to write about teen life and ends up reliving her adolescent insecurities before winning the heart of her English teacher. Movie cliches and stereotypes abound, and Barrymore's clunky performance further sinks the contrived coming-of-age tale. April 1999


  • 9.   BLACK MASK
      (Artisan)    $9.4 million in three weeks
          Because of excessive violence with gore, a rough-sex encounter, much rough language and an instance of profanity, the U.S. Catholic Conference classification is 0 morally offensive. The Motion Picture Association of America rating is R -- restricted. In "Black Mask", set in Hong Kong, a genetically enhanced human (played by Jet Li) joins forces with a cop to battle super criminals intent on world domination. The martial-arts slugfest seems intent only on cataloging myriad ways to maiza and slaughter opponents. May 1999

  • 10.   THE LOVE LETTER
      (Dreamworks)    $5.1 million in two weeks
          Because of an off-screen affair, references to a same-sex relationship, fleeting nudity and a few instances of rough language, the U.S. Catholic Conference classification is A-IV, adults, with reservations. The Motion Picture Association of America rating is PG-13 -- parents are strongly cautioned that some material may be inappropriate for children under 13. "The Love Letter" is a lightweight tale set in a New England village where romantic complications ensue among the residents (including Kate Capshaw, Tom Selleck, Tom Everett Scott and Ellen DeGeneres) when several of them believe they are the intended recipient of an anonymous love letter. The comedy's charms are minor and its resolution weakly dramatized. May 1999

    Reviews provided through Film & Broadcasting Division of the National Conference of Catholic Bishops and figures provided through Exhibitor Relations Co. Inc.

    In the Body of the Sacred Heart beats the Precious Blood

          In her column this week, Sister Mary Lucy Astuto focuses on this Sunday's Solemnity of the Body and Blood of Christ, known in past times simply as Corpus Christi Sunday when all attention was placed on the Most Blessed Sacrament and the true nature of the Sacred Mystery of Body and Blood, Soul and Divinity of the Holy Eucharist. It was a time when parish processions took place, forty hour devotion and people paid attention to staying in the state of sanctifying grace so they could worthily receive Jesus in Holy Communion. This is what Sister reminds us of today, that nothing has changed and we better understand this and return all reverence to and for Him For her column this weekend, Body and Blood, Soul and Divinity! click on GETTING TO THE HEART OF THE MATTER

    "BODY AND BLOOD, SOUL AND DIVINITY!"

           This Sunday we celebrate the Feast of Corpus Christi, the "Body of Christ!" Of the seven Sacraments which Jesus gave us, this is the Holiest, because IT is JESUS HIMSELF!

           Due to over 25 years of poor Catholic teaching of the Faith, many American Catholics today question that the Holy Eucharist is truly the Body, Blood, Soul and Divinity of Our Lord, Jesus. Many claim that the Holy Eucharist is only a symbol. Yet Jesus Himself at the Last Supper said: "THIS IS MY BODY... THIS IS MY BLOOD...!" He did not say, "This is a SYMBOL of My Body, etc."

           God is the Supreme Being, Infinitely Perfect, Who made all things and keeps them in existence. God can do anything. He can create universes, move mountains, divide seas, bring the dead to life. By His Own Divine Power He CAN change unleavened bread and simple wine into Himself. God is God. God DOES exist. At His Word all things were made.

           One of the tactics of the evil one today is to get people to try to REASON OUT everything. If something cannot be understood by reason, then, many people think, it must not be true. Yet common sense would dictate that there are many mysteries in the natural world. Who understands the causes of all kinds of cancer? What are the cures for all kinds of cancer? Who knows for sure how the universe began? Where is the end of the universe? How many galaxies are there? How can man travel to Mars and back safely? Do we know for sure if there is life on other planets? What is the cure for AIDS? If there are mysteries in the natural world around us, we should not be surprised if there are mysteries in the supernatural world. Why should the human mind, which does not compare to the intelligence of the angels and most especially God, think that God cannot work a profound miracle and change bread and wine into Himself?

           God can do anything He wants to do. "Nothing is impossible for God."

           In college I learned in philosophy that spiritual things are more real than material things. Because we cannot see with our eyes, nor hear with our ears, does not mean that something isnít true. If God said it, I believe it. I donít need "proof" or reason to convince me. I need Faith. And so far, God has blessed me with such.

           It follows, therefore, that if the Holy Eucharist IS the Son of God, Himself, then each of us should receive Our Lord with the purest soul possible. For anyone to receive Holy Communion in the state of mortal sin, they would commit another mortal sin called a sacrilege and their spiritual condition would be worse then it was before.

           This Sunday when I receive Jesus in the Holy Eucharist, I shall pray for you that your Faith in Our Lordís Real Presence is made stronger each day and that you will find in the Blessed Sacrament all the strength you need to live a holy and virtuous life. In Our Lordís Real Presence in the Blessed Sacrament is all the hope, love and strength we need to live.

            God bless you!


    SIMPLY SHEEN:

    True Obedience bears the greatest fruit!

       They say a picture is worth a thousand words, but the words of Bishop Fulton J. Sheen have been known to launch a thousand images in one's mind, one of the ways this late luminary did so much to evangelize the faith. Because of the urgency of the times and because few there are today who possess the wisdom, simplicity and insight than the late Archbishop who touched millions, we are bringing you daily gems from his writings. The good bishop makes it so simple that we have dubbed this daily series: "SIMPLY SHEEN".

    "The real basis of obedience in the family is not the fear of punishment, just as in religiou it is not the fear of hell. Rather, it is based on the fact that one never wants to hurt anyone whom one loves. It will bear repeating that Our Blessed Lord said, 'If you love Me, you will keep My commandments.'"


    May 25th Medjugorje Monthly Message

        Dear children! Also today I call you to convert and to more firmly believe in God. Children, you seek peace and pray in different ways, but you have not yet given your hearts to God for Him to fill them with His love. So, I am with you to teach you and to bring you closer to the love of God. If you love God above all else, it will be easy for you to pray and to open your hearts to Him. Thank you for having responded to my call.
    For more on Medjugorje, click on MEDJUGORJE AND MORE

    DAILY WORD

    "The first commandment of all is, Hear, O Israel! The Lord our God is one God;' and thou shalt love the Lord they God with thy whole heart, and with thy whole soul, and with thy whole mind, and with thy whole strength. This is the first commandment. And the second is like it, Thou shalt love thy neighbor as theyself. There is no other commandment greater than these."

    Mark 12: 29-31


    Click here to go to SECTION TWO and SECTION THREE or click here to return to the graphics front page of this issue.


    June 4-6, 1999 volume 10, no. 108   DAILY CATHOLIC