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Country Bears, The

By

Source: Catholic News Service

Silly musical comedy in which an 11-year-old bear (voiced by Haley Joel Osment) who was adopted by a human family, runs away to Tennessee to find more folks like himself and reunite his favorite band, the Country Bears, for a benefit concert that could save the legendary venue where the band got its start. Inspired by the Country Bears Jamboree attraction at Walt Disney World, director Peter Hastings' film has several amusing laughs with a predictable plot that is secondary to the energetic musical numbers, but the jocular manner in which a kidnapping subplot is presented may put off chaperoning parents. Some mild menace, but likely suitable for older children. The U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops classification is A-II -- adults and adolescents. The Motion Picture Association of America rating is G -- general audiences.

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Alphonsus Rodriguez: Tragedy and challenge beset today’s saint early in life, but Alphonsus Rodriguez found happiness and contentment through simple service and prayer. 
<p>Born in Spain in 1533, Alphonsus inherited the family textile business at 23. Within the space of three years, his wife, daughter and mother died; meanwhile, business was poor. Alphonsus stepped back and reassessed his life. He sold the business and, with his young son, moved into his sisters’ home. There he learned the discipline of prayer and meditation. </p><p>Years later, at the death of his son, Alphonsus, almost 40 by then, sought to join the Jesuits. He was not helped by his poor education. He applied twice before being admitted. For 45 years he served as doorkeeper at the Jesuits’ college in Majorca. When not at his post, he was almost always at prayer, though he often encountered difficulties and temptations. </p><p>His holiness and prayerfulness attracted many to him, including St. Peter Claver, then a Jesuit seminarian. Alphonsus’s life as doorkeeper may have been humdrum, but he caught the attention of poet and fellow-Jesuit Gerard Manley Hopkins, who made him the subject of one of his poems. </p><p>Alphonsus died in 1617. He is the patron saint of Majorca.</p> American Catholic Blog People mess up, and it’s especially hard to watch as our children and other young people go down paths we know are likely to lead to heartbreak. Providing gentle guidance when it’s needed, and love even when that guidance isn’t followed, helps them to start fresh.

 
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