Monday, December 09, 2013

University of the Incarnate Word Student Shot to Death by Campus Police Officer

The University of the Incarnate Word in San Antonio, Texas is a Catholic school founded by the Sisters of the Incarnate Word.   It started out as a small all-female school and is now a large university with a very diverse student population. On Friday, a student named Robert Cameron Redus was pulled over by a campus police officer for allegedly speeding and driving erratically.  The police office shot Cameron Redus multiple times and Redus died.  This article from the San Antonio Express News quotes various people regarding this incident which I will break down in a different format:

Cameron Redus
  • Honors Student
  • "Dozens stood to speak about Redus. Nearly all invoked his outgoing spirit, helpful attitude and affection for everyone he met."
  • " I don't think anyone understands how something like this could happen to someone like Cameron. It makes no sense.”
  •  “He was one of the most level-headed people I've ever met. What I have heard is completely counterintuitive to what I have known him to be,” he said, referring to accounts of Redus initiating an altercation with the officer who shot him."
UIW police Cpl. Christopher J. Carter
  • "As authorities investigate the shooting, one of the officer's former neighbors described him as having a confrontational personality.
    “He was mean,” said Hugo Bustillos, who now lives in the two-bedroom apartment near Fort Sam Houston where Carter, 38, used to live."
  • Carter also had run-ins with at least one other tenant over Carter's dog before Carter moved away last year."
  • “He exaggerated a lot,” Bustillos said.
    “He put a lot of false statements on us with our landlord,” Bustillos said. “He said we were smoking pot in front of our kids, but we were just smoking cigarettes.
    “He also made trouble for someone else and got into an argument with” management.
  • "Over the course of Carter's eight-year law career in Texas, he has held nine jobs at eight agencies"
This is a horrible situation that cuts very close to home for me.  I just hope that justice is served for the Redus family and that all at the University are able to pull together to come to some sort of peace.

New Catholic Book

Accentuating the Positive - Robert Royal reviews Philip Lawler's new book - When Faith Goes Viral: 11 Success Stories on the New Evangelization from Alabama to Vladivostok. 

The book is a collection of essays on movements and organizations that are having a positive effect within the Church.  ETWN, St. John Cantius, Focus are examples that I am familiar with through various Catholic media, but the book also has examples of international groups that are new to me. 

Sunday, December 08, 2013

Beneath Malta’s Beauty, a Tangled History

From the New York Times Travel section:

"Nicholas de Piro doesn’t look like a warrior monk. As the bespectacled grandfather padded around his 16th-century palazzo, pointing out curiosities like a gilded sedan chair and silver medical tools, he appeared more likely to offer me a cup of tea than slay anyone in the name of Christ. And yet that is the sort of thing Mr. de Piro’s order, the Knights of Malta (officially the Sovereign Hospitaller Order of the Knights of St. John of Jerusalem, of Rhodes and of Malta), were known for in their heyday. Drawn from the most noble families of Europe, they left their homelands, took vows of chastity and obedience and dedicated themselves to fighting infidels. The order no longer wages war, focusing instead on caring for the sick and poor. Until I arrived at Mr. de Piro’s doorstep on the Mediterranean island-nation of Malta, though, I’d had no idea that the Knights of Malta still existed. 

 The history of Malta — actually an archipelago that includes three inhabited islands, just 50 miles south of Sicily — is peppered with violence and disorder. Today, though, it is hard to find a corner of the country that doesn’t feel peaceful and safe. Its crystal-clear, intensely blue waters make for some of the best snorkeling and scuba diving in Europe, while its beaches, rocky coves, arid hills and warm weather have long attracted northern neighbors in search of cheap sunshine. And yet not even 2 percent of visitors come from the United States. If you have seen it recently, it was probably in its role as a Hollywood stand-in for places like Athens (“Munich”) and Jerusalem (“World War Z”)"

Fr. Richard Novak, martyr

I never knew Michael Novak's brother was a priest who was murdered:

"Do you know young people looking for causes that would give their lives immeasurable value for the future? Before his violent death, young Father Richard Novak, CSC, started a movement that desperately needs the labors of a new generation.

My younger brother was murdered at age twenty-eight in Bangladesh, in the waning days of the 1964 Muslim/Hindu riots that left several thousand dead. It was January 16, not quite two months after the murder of John F. Kennedy in Dallas.

When the news was reported to Pope Paul VI, he exclaimed:  A martyr!”"

2nd Sunday of Advent: 9 things to know and share

Read Jimmy Akin on the Second Sunday of Advent here.

Pure Evil

Police: Newlyweds lure man through Craigslist for thrill killing

"(CNN) -- It isn't that the man had done anything wrong to infuriate Elytte Barbour and his wife.

The couple -- married three weeks -- just wanted to kill someone together, police said.
And Troy LaFerrara, 42, happened to be the unlucky one.

The Barbours are accused of luring LaFerrara through a "companionship" ad on Craigslist, and stabbing and strangling him to death.

Barbour told police he and his wife had tried to kill others. But the plans didn't work out.

"He tells us that they intended to kill somebody together," Sunbury Police Chief Steve Mazzeo told CNN. "They tried to kill other individuals and failed. And this happened to be one that worked."

Read the rest only if you have a strong stomach here.

I often think that the muslim culture is sick, but perhaps the West, especially the US, is sicker.