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Matchstick Men

By

Source: Catholic News Service

Clever shell-game drama about an obsessive-compulsive small-time con artist (Nicolas Cage) whose neurotically routine life unravels when he learns he has a teen-age daughter (Alison Lohman) with a gift for the grift, complicating a potentially lucrative scheme to fleece a heavy-hitting millionaire. Full of triple-dealings and exploiting viewers' fascination for confidence games, the film, directed by Ridley Scott, while morally glossing over its protagonist's dishonest actions, ultimately imparts a message that crime burns you in the end. A benign attitude toward larceny, some violence, a scene in a strip club with partial nudity, an instance of fleeting rear nudity and rough language, as well as recurring crude language and profanity. The USCCB Office for Film & Broadcasting classification is A-III -- adults. The Motion Picture Association of America rating is PG-13 -- parents are strongly cautioned. Some material may be inappropriate for children under 13.

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Sharbel Makhluf: Although this saint never traveled far from the Lebanese village of Beka-Kafra, where he was born, his influence has spread widely. 
<p>Joseph Zaroun Makluf was raised by an uncle because his father, a mule driver, died when Joseph was only three. At the age of 23, Joseph joined the Monastery of St. Maron at Annaya, Lebanon, and took the name Sharbel in honor of a second-century martyr. He professed his final vows in 1853 and was ordained six years later. </p><p>Following the example of the fifth-century St. Maron, Sharbel lived as a hermit from 1875 until his death. His reputation for holiness prompted people to seek him to receive a blessing and to be remembered in his prayers. He followed a strict fast and was very devoted to the Blessed Sacrament. When his superiors occasionally asked him to administer the sacraments to nearby villages, Sharbel did so gladly. </p><p>He died in the late afternoon on Christmas Eve. Christians and non-Christians soon made his tomb a place of pilgrimage and of cures. Pope Paul VI beatified him in 1965 and canonized him 12 years later.</p> American Catholic Blog You cannot claim to be ‘for Christ’ and espouse a political cause that implies callous indifference to the needs of millions of human beings and even cooperate in their destruction.

 
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