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ON FAITH & MEDIA View Comments

Happy Feet

By

Source: Catholic News Service

Computer-animated fable set in the Antarctic about a young emperor penguin (voiced by Elijah Wood) whose inability to carry a tune and propensity for tap dancing gets him banished by the puritanical elders who blame him for the colony's dwindling fish supply, prompting the misfit to prove them wrong, get to the bottom of the food shortage, and hopefully discover his "heartsong," the mating call unique to each penguin that will help him find true love. Director George Miller combines terrific animation and voice talent (that also includes Robin Williams, Hugh Jackman and Nicole Kidman) but packs too many themes -- tolerance, conformity, environmental responsibility -- into the sweet yet slender story. There are some dark and intense moments laced throughout and an unflattering view of religious authority, but the broader themes of love and self-worth should melt most objections. Some mildly rude humor and innuendo, as well as some menace and two frightening sequences that may upset very young viewers, but probably OK for older children. The USCCB Office for Film & Broadcasting classification is A-II -- adults and adolescents. The Motion Picture Association of America rating is PG -- parental guidance suggested. Some material may not be suitable for children.

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Feast of the Guardian Angels: Perhaps no aspect of Catholic piety is as comforting to parents as the belief that an angel protects their little ones from dangers real and imagined. Yet guardian angels are not only for children. Their role is to represent individuals before God, to watch over them always, to aid their prayer and to present their souls to God at death. 
<p>The concept of an angel assigned to guide and nurture each human being is a development of Catholic doctrine and piety based on Scripture but not directly drawn from it. Jesus' words in Matthew 18:10 best support the belief: "See that you do not despise one of these little ones, for I say to you that their angels in heaven always look upon the face of my heavenly Father." </p><p>Devotion to the angels began to develop with the birth of the monastic tradition. St. Benedict gave it impetus and Bernard of Clairvaux, the great 12th-century reformer, was such an eloquent spokesman for the guardian angels that angelic devotion assumed its current form in his day. </p><p>A feast in honor of the guardian angels was first observed in the 16th century. In 1615, Pope Paul V added it to the Roman calendar.</p> American Catholic Blog Nothing then, must keep us back, nothing separate us from Him, and nothing come between us and Him.

 
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