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ON FAITH & MEDIA View Comments

The Muppets

By
Sr. Rose Pacatte, F.S.P.
Source: AmericanCatholic.org

It has been twelve long years since there has been a Muppet movie.  Walter (voice of Peter Linz), a new Muppet and a huge fan of the Muppets, the world’s biggest Muppet fan, and his “brother” Gary (Jason Segel) and his girlfriend Mary (Amy Adams) plan a trip to Hollywood.
 
They visit the Muppet Studio, now in ruins. When they learn that an oil magnate  (Chris Cooper) is buying the land, a man who has no love for the Muppets, and plans to tear down the studio to drill, Walter goes into action.
 
Walter, Gary and Mary track down Kermit the Frog and convince him that they have to save the studio by putting on a musical to raise money. Then they track down Miss Piggy who heads up Vogue’s Plus Size division in Paris (in a hair style like Vogue’s Editor-in- Chief Anna Wintour), Animal, Gonzo and the rest. They must also deal with the Muppet knockoff group, the Moopets.
 
“The Muppets” is a fun musical. I loved “The Rainbow Connection” but wondered a little at the chicken’s singing a version of CeeLo Green’s “Forget You” that everyone know used a different word beginning with “f” and now the Camilla and the Chickens are singing their version. Maybe this is why the film has a PG rating for some mild rude humor.
 
There are a lot of inter-textual references, that is, inside jokes about Muppets and Hollywood, plus much music and guest appearances, including politico James Carville – twice! The film is a very enjoyable crowd pleaser.
 
Themes of friendship, community, and solidarity abound.
 
“The Muppets” signals a move from Muppet-maker Jim Henson’s original creative home in New York to Los Angeles, after all, Disney acquired The Muppet franchise in 2004.


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Pedro de San José Betancur: Central America claimed its first saint with the canonization of Pedro de San José Betancur by Pope John Paul II in Guatemala City on July 30, 2002. Known as the "St. Francis of the Americas," Pedro de Betancur is the first saint to have worked and died in Guatemala. 
<p>Calling the new saint an “outstanding example” of Christian mercy, the Holy Father noted that St. Pedro practiced mercy “heroically with the lowliest and the most deprived.” Speaking to the estimated 500,000 Guatemalans in attendance, the Holy Father spoke of the social ills that plague the country today and of the need for change. </p><p>“Let us think of the children and young people who are homeless or deprived of an education; of abandoned women with their many needs; of the hordes of social outcasts who live in the cities; of the victims of organized crime, of prostitution or of drugs; of the sick who are neglected and the elderly who live in loneliness,” he said in his homily during the three-hour liturgy. </p><p>Pedro very much wanted to become a priest, but God had other plans for the young man born into a poor family on Tenerife in the Canary Islands. Pedro was a shepherd until age 24, when he began to make his way to Guatemala, hoping to connect with a relative engaged in government service there. By the time he reached Havana, he was out of money. After working there to earn more, he got to Guatemala City the following year. When he arrived he was so destitute that he joined the bread line that the Franciscans had established. </p><p>Soon, Pedro enrolled in the local Jesuit college in hopes of studying for the priesthood. No matter how hard he tried, however, he could not master the material; he withdrew from school. In 1655 he joined the Secular Franciscan Order. Three years later he opened a hospital for the convalescent poor; a shelter for the homeless and a school for the poor soon followed. Not wanting to neglect the rich of Guatemala City, Pedro began walking through their part of town ringing a bell and inviting them to repent. </p><p>Other men came to share in Pedro's work. Out of this group came the Bethlehemite Congregation, which won papal approval after Pedro's death. A Bethlehemite sisters' community, similarly founded after Pedro's death, was inspired by his life of prayer and compassion. </p><p>He is sometimes credited with originating the Christmas Eve <i>posadas</i> procession in which people representing Mary and Joseph seek a night's lodging from their neighbors. The custom soon spread to Mexico and other Central American countries. </p><p>Pedro was canonized in 2002.</p> American Catholic Blog We sometimes try to do everything on our own, forgetting that the Lord wants to help us. Let's never be afraid to admit that we are weak and can't do things on our own. St. Paul gives us a great example: "On my own behalf I will not boast, except of my weaknesses" (2 Corinthians 12:5).


 
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