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ON FAITH & MEDIA View Comments

Swing Vote

By

Source: Catholic News Service

Smartly made if unabashedly formulaic comedy about a beer-chugging, slovenly single father (Kevin Costner) whose civically minded child (Madeline Carroll) surreptitiously tries to vote on his behalf, leading to an anomaly where his vote will determine the U.S. presidential race between the incumbent Republican (Kelsey Grammer) and his Democratic rival (Dennis Hopper). Costner and Carroll have good chemistry, though his character's predictable reformation takes annoyingly long, but the important messages of director and co-writer Joshua Michael Stern's film – the importance of every vote and the integrity of the political process – are entertainingly conveyed, and the script wisely takes a nonpartisan position. Much crude language, profanity and crass expressions; heavy drinking; brief irreverence; and some domestic discord. The USCCB Office for Film & Broadcasting classification is A-III – adults. The Motion Picture Association of America rating is PG-13 – parents strongly cautioned. Some material may be inappropriate for children under 13.

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Gregory Grassi and Companions: Christian missionaries have often gotten caught in the crossfire of wars against their own countries. When the governments of Britain, Germany, Russia and France forced substantial territorial concessions from the Chinese in 1898, anti-foreign sentiment grew very strong among many Chinese people. 
<p>Gregory Grassi was born in Italy in 1833, ordained in 1856 and sent to China five years later. Gregory was later ordained Bishop of North Shanxi. With 14 other European missionaries and 14 Chinese religious, he was martyred during the short but bloody Boxer Uprising of 1900. </p><p>Twenty-six of these martyrs were arrested on the orders of Yu Hsien, the governor of Shanxi province. They were hacked to death on July 9, 1900. Five of them were Friars Minor; seven were Franciscan Missionaries of Mary — the first martyrs of their congregation. Seven were Chinese seminarians and Secular Franciscans; four martyrs were Chinese laymen and Secular Franciscans. The other three Chinese laymen killed in Shanxi simply worked for the Franciscans and were rounded up with all the others. Three Italian Franciscans were martyred that same week in the province of Hunan. All these martyrs were beatified in 1946 and were among teh 120 martyrs canonized in 2000.</p> American Catholic Blog It is through the Eucharist that Jesus gives us his Body to eat and his Blood to drink, so that we can dwell in him and he in us. Jesus came to lead us into oneness with him and to help us live a life of oneness with others.

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