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Spiderwick, Chronicles, The

By

Source: Catholic News Service

Gothic fantasy adventure tale set on an isolated Victorian estate once occupied by an eccentric student of the paranormal (David Strathairn) and now home to his great-niece (Mary-Louise Parker), her twin sons (both played by Freddie Highmore) and daughter (Sarah Bolger), all of whom find themselves caught up in a struggle among normally invisible creatures, some good, others evil, for possession of a book detailing their ancestor's discoveries. Director Mark Waters' lavish film, showcasing first-class special effects, some fine performances, unobjectionable dialogue and estimable lessons about family life, is appropriate for all but the youngest viewers, who might find it too intense. Some fantasy violence and a couple of mild oaths. The USCCB Office for Film & Broadcasting classification is A-I -- general patronage. The Motion Picture Association of America rating is PG -- parental guidance suggested. Some material may not be suitable for children.

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Gregory VII: The 10th century and the first half of the 11th were dark days for the Church, partly because the papacy was the pawn of various Roman families. In 1049, things began to change when Pope Leo IX, a reformer, was elected. He brought a young monk named Hildebrand to Rome as his counselor and special representative on important missions. He was to become Gregory VII. 
<p>Three evils plagued the Church then: simony (the buying and selling of sacred offices and things), the unlawful marriage of the clergy and lay investiture (kings and nobles controlling the appointment of Church officials). To all of these Hildebrand directed his reformer’s attention, first as counselor to the popes and later (1073-1085) as pope himself. </p><p>Gregory’s papal letters stress the role of bishop of Rome as the vicar of Christ and the visible center of unity in the Church. He is well known for his long dispute with Holy Roman Emperor Henry IV over who should control the selection of bishops and abbots. </p><p>Gregory fiercely resisted any attack on the liberty of the Church. For this he suffered and finally died in exile. He said, “I have loved justice and hated iniquity; therefore I die in exile.” Thirty years later the Church finally won its struggle against lay investiture.</p> American Catholic Blog In Christ, true God and true man, our humanity was taken to God. Christ opened the path to us. If we entrust our life to him, if we let ourselves be guided by him, we are certain to be in safe hands, in the hands of our Savior.

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