UP Catholic 10 07 2016 E Edition Page 4

4 October 7, 2016 THE U.P. CATHOLIC COMMENTARY www.upcatholic.org COOPER OFFICE EQUIPMENT Full Copier Line From Tabletop To Networkable Digital Laser Systems (906) 228-6929 Phone 800-432-7682 Fax 800-908-8542 Purchase & Lease Options Authorized KONICA Printers-Copiers Dealer Holy Cross Cemetery Escanaba & Marquette Fall Notification Each year, in order to beautify our cemetery, our grounds and maintenance crews perform the final cleaning of the year and make preparations for the winter. All decorations, tributes, flowers (natural and artificial), pots, baskets and wreaths should be removed by families by October 15th. Articles not removed by this time will be disposed of by Cemetery personnel. Families may leave a shepherd's hook but should remove the arrangement. Christmas Wreaths may be placed after November 15th. We appreciate your assistance. If you need assistance or have questions, contact Neil at (906) 225-0191 Dale at (906) 786-4685 Please pick up a copy of the decorating and planting regulations at the cemetery office. Beginning October 1st our cemetery gates will be open from 7am - 9pm Upper Peninsula Travelers Presents AMELIA ISLAND, ST. AUGUSTINE & JACKSONVILLE, FLORIDA 11 DAYS, 10 NIGHTS FEBRUARY 10-20, 2017- $899 PP/DBL OCC. Price Includes: Transportation, lodging, 18 meals, Shedd Aquarium in Chicago, Free time in Nashville, Fountain of Youth, Kingsley Plantation, St. John's River Cruise, Historic St. George's Street, and much more. For information and reservations, contact: Sheila Heikkinen (906) 524-7003 or shebob123@charter.net GENERAL ELECTRIC APPLIANCES KIRKISH FURNITURE Largest stock in the U.P." Restonic Bedding Televisions - RCA - Hitachi - Toshiba Floor Covering Free Delivery in the U.P. 1-800-535-0258 1200 W. MEMORIAL HOUGHTON, MICHIGAN See our electronics department for more specials. I cant say Ive ever been a fan of the Clemson Tigers. However, I recently took stock of Dab Sweeney, head coach of the foot- ball team. In a recent press conference, Sweeney addressed professional football players kneel- ing during the national anthem as a means to voice their displeasure for social injustice. His words were poi- gnant, he spoke with passion, with emotion. He acknowledged the right for one to express him or herself. His issue, however, was doing it in a team setting and being a distraction to the game and team. I totally disagree with that, he said. I think there is a right way to do things. I dont think two wrongs make a right. I think it just creates more divisiveness, more division. I think there is a better way, he add- ed. How about call a press conference? Express your feelings. Go and be a part of things and protest them. Everybody has that right. But I just think this creates more division. Thats what I hate to see. Amen. This all started with San Francisco 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick, who first sat while the national anthem was played and later kneeled. His argument is minori- ties in this country are not being treated fairly. Its tough to argue with that because we see it on the news every night. Christians have been fighting injustice including in those institutions we honor for centuries. And Kaepernick, a Christian, says hes doing this to make America better. Yet, in kneeling, is he? We know its created a worldwide Twitter pandemic, and just in the past few weeks, a number of high school players have followed suit by kneeling. If I remember correctly, my American Government teacher in high school taught us that standing for the national anthem is not in support of what current policies are in place. Rather, he shared that it is a way to honor the principles on which this beautiful country was founded. Its a means to work together to make the coun- try better. And, for centuries, weve never had an issue doing it. That brings me back to Sweeney, who tied his remarks into the Bible. That really struck a chord. The Bible says love your neighbor as youd love yourself, he said. It doesnt say love your neighbor from the same religion. It doesnt say love your neighbor if theyre the same color as you. It doesnt say love your neighbor if they pull for the same team as you. It just says, love your neighbor as youd love yourself. If we all lived by that in this country, we wouldnt have near the problems we have. Truth. I believe that in standing for the national anthem we are, in a small way, giving thanks to God. And I also believe that in standing, we are fighting, as a whole, for the injustices Kaepernick draws attention to. Above all, surpassing the rhetoric, isnt it the Christian thing to do? I stand and pray we can find ways to respect and love one another. I stand to show my honor and love to all the brave men and women who sacrificed their lives in order for us to enjoy freedom. Kaepernicks courage is to be commend- ed. Yet, I question the manner used in drawing attention to the highly divisive ra- cial issue. Kneeling may draw awareness. It may start a conversation about social inequalities. But to achieve results, much more needs to be done if we are to make true advancements in this country. (Editor's note: LaJoie is a member of St. Paul Catholic Church in Negaunee. He welcomes reactions to his column at jlajoie@charter.net). FROM THE SIDELINES Jim LaJoie Standing for the national anthem, simply the right thing to do E ver since I can remember, Ive enjoyed gadgets. As a student at Holy Family Catholic School in St. Louis, I looked forward to the Computers and Robots of the Future day. The halls would be lined with the students creations of what they thought technology would bring in the future. One of the robots I remember was supposed to go out into the yard each morning and fetch the newspa- per. Were still waiting for that one. If memory serves me right, you had to be at least in the third grade to enter your creation. When I reached the minimum age I was excited to take my turn, but had one big wor- ry. I thought the computers and robots actually had to work. Since my dad was a radar man in the Navy and my experience with electrical circuitry was minimal, I enlisted his help to build a working computer. The idea was to have the operator answer a series of questions and the comput- er would indicate if the answer was correct. To this day I still remember that Abraham Lincoln was the 16th president since that was one of the questions. What we ended up with was a card- board box with a column of questions beside a column of possible answers. The operator would touch a wired sty- lus to a contact by a question and touch a second wired stylus to a contact by the answer. If the answer was correct, it would complete a simple circuit and a battery-powered light would turn on. It came as quite a surprise to learn that I had the only working gadget in the exhibition. It was a bigger surprise to learn that we were supposed to come up with something that might work in the future and not something that actu- ally worked now. The biggest surprise was to learn that I received a poor grade because I hadnt followed directions. But I learned from that and moved on. Now that a few years have passed, this reminds me of my spiritual life. I want to devise a penance or some formula to make things work with God. But Hes the one with the plan. He simply asks me to trust Him. Lord Almighty, blessed is the one who trusts in You. Psalm 84:12 Thinking about gadgets, help from a sailor, God HERE AM I John Fee

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