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opinion/commentary View Comments

Back From Iraq
By B.B.
Source: St. Anthony Messenger
Published: Wednesday, October 20, 2010
Click here to email! Email | Click here to print! Print | Size: A A |  
 
At our Thanksgiving dinners, sometimes as part of the grace before the meal, we each say what we are especially thankful for right now. This year I will say I am thankful for the removal of combat troops from Iraq.

Yes, we all know it’s not “Mission Accomplished,” and we will never know the jubilation of V-E or V-J Day. Changing the program from “Operation Iraqi Freedom” to “Operation New Dawn” does not mean Iraq is militarily secure or its government is democratic. But it is a milestone, as President Barack Obama said in his August 31 speech from the Oval Office, only the second time in his presidency he has used that prestigious venue.

About 50,000 Americans remain in the country in an advisory capacity. What that means in a country that six months after its national elections had yet to form a government, I can’t predict. But I do know two things: Fewer Americans will die in Iraq, and Obama kept a key campaign...

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Joseph of Arimathea and Nicodemus: The actions of these two influential Jewish leaders give insight into the charismatic power of Jesus and his teachings—and the risks that could be involved in following him.
<p><b>Joseph</b> was a respected, wealthy civic leader who had become a disciple of Jesus. Following the death of Jesus, Joseph obtained Jesus' body from Pilate, wrapped it in fine linen and buried it. For these reasons Joseph is considered the patron saint of funeral directors and pallbearers. More important is the courage Joseph showed in asking Pilate for Jesus' body. Jesus was a condemned criminal who had been publicly executed. According to some legends, Joseph was punished and imprisoned for such a bold act.
</p><p><b>Nicodemus</b> was a Pharisee and, like Joseph, an important first-century Jew. We know from John's Gospel that Nicodemus went to Jesus at night—secretly—to better understand his teachings about the kingdom. Later, Nicodemus spoke up for Jesus at the time of his arrest and assisted in Jesus' burial. We know little else about Nicodemus.
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