Wouldn't an American flag be more tasteful anyway, since the Mt. Soledad cross is a memorial for veterans?
Hear, hear! I would much rather use [accepted] symbols of America to show respect for people who gave their lives in the service of America.
::sigh:: There seems to be no winning.
I agree that, for pagans, working with Mary as goddess may not be "optimum" as there are other wonderful goddesses to work with. But for me, She will always have a special place because She was my goddess before I had the vocabulary to call Her such. She has a place on my altar as "goddess of my father" when I work with ancestors and "goddess of my mother" when I work with my female aspects. She is by no means the only goddess I work with, but when I find myself in a Catholic church with my family, I am comforted by Her presence.
That's beautiful! Tradition and experience tell us that roses are favored of Mary. My sister (who would reject any hint that she was pagan or goddess-worshipping) found a house filled with rose bushes and prayed to Mary that, if she got the house, she would always keep roses there. She did and she has. There's a grotto, now, in the backyard, with a 3-foot statue and she buys a new bush every other year or so. There are always fresh roses in the house and near the statue.
If there is, I've not heard of it. I hear it from Protestant corners all the time (usually as proof that the Catholics really are the Whore of Babylon). Most Catholics I know—including the really fundamentalist ones—have a very deep devotion to Mary (as intercessor, of course).
I think I will light a Guadalupe candle on Her day
Good idea, but—which one?
January 1 - the Solemnity of Mary
January 8 - the Feast of Our Lady of Prompt Succor
February 2 - Presentation of the Lord
February 11- the Feast of Our Lady of Lourdes
March 25 - the Annunciation
May (the whole month) - the Month of Mary
Mother's Day (2nd Sunday in May (US)) - also sacred to Mary
May 31 - the Visitation
floating between May and June - the Feast of the Immaculate Heart
June 27 - the Feast of Our Mother of Perpetual Help
July 16 - the Feast of Our Lady of Mount Carmel
August 15 - the Assumption
August 22 - the Queenship of Mary
September 8 - the Birth of Mary
September 12 - the Feast of the Most Holy Name of Mary
September 15 - the Feast of Our Lady of Sorrows
September 24 - the Feast of Our Lady of Walsingham, England
October (the whole month) - the Month of the Rosary (the sequence of prayers sacred to Mary)
October 7 - the Feast of Our Lady of the Rosary
October 8 - the Feast of Our Lady of Good Remedy
November 21 - the Presentation of the Blessed Virgin Mary
December 8 - the Immaculate Conception
December 12 - the Feast of Our Lady of Guadalupe (of course, I'm sure this is the one you meant)
every Saturday - set aside for Marian Devotions
Those Catholics sure do love their goddess!!
I love all the people who have said that She was our "first Goddess". It makes me want to write a kids' book (for Catholics and pagans alike) called My First Goddess with all the awesomeness (in both the colloquial and the religious senses) of Mary!
DIttos to you and Labrys—Mary, whether as the Mother of God, the Magdalene, or the Three Marys was my first goddess. Her ever changing face and Her deep roots in the cultures She has touched lead me (among other things) to paganism and a love of Her aspects in other cultures (White Tara & Kwan Yin, for example). I'm [Catholic] godmother to a niece and I'm trying to cultivate in her a similar love of Mary.
My journey from the pain of Catholicism has come to the point that I can pray to its Mary without thinking I'm invoking its god. This book may well be a gift to myself—or to She Who it glorifies!
Loath as I am to bump this post back up, I've been hearing about the new backscatter devices and their controversy in other news sources and I love knowing that I heard it here, first! Congrats, Jason, on an awesome news source!
You raise some very good points and make me wish I had a more intimate knowledge of how it works in Germany (where my understanding is that every male over the age of 18 is required to enlist for a minimum of two years in either the army or the civilian corps). They must have some kinds of accommodation for those who are unable to serve in either for one reason or another.
With regard to training, just as we don't (at least, I hope we don't) toss new recruits into battle without training, my idea would involve appropriate training for the civilian option. As a woman, I feel it's very important that this kind of a "draft" be of all genders—and this might even be a way to help get rid of the restrictions on women in the military and DADT.
Finally, I would hope that people would see it as service rather than requirement. I know that many would not, however. We simply don't [currently] have the kind of culture where giving back to one's community is honored.