Friday, January 20, 2006 — Dear Friends,

I arrived back in Rome just yesterday, and was able to sleep a delicious 10 hours straight. Today I feel like a new man! How helpful a good night’s rest can be.

As promised, I am posting a few e-mails that you have sent. I tried to select a few according to this criteria: 1) representative of the majority 2) of some interest to other readers 3) related in some way to the Venezuelan trip. I didn’t edit any of the e-mails, but on a couple of them I took out paragraphs that dealt with more personal items, out of respect for those who sent them. When you write in, if you prefer for your comments to remain confidential, just let me know.

In the future I will try to post some answers to the questions that you have asked me to comment on.

Some of you have asked me to tell you when I will be on FOX. I do not have any specific time slot, but rather am invited on different shows a couple of times a week, when there are issues that could be understood when a moral, ethical, or social perspective is appropriate. Tonight, Friday, for example, I will be on Neil Cavuto’s show at about 4:35 p.m. U.S. Eastern Time, to give a little summary of the trip to Venezuela.

Take care and God bless. Fr. Jonathan


Dear Father Jonathan:

Thank you. In today's blog, I learned more about the Venezuelan political situation than I have in months on regular TV news. Great work.

I am a retired teacher. One day a few years ago, (well before terrorism was a common word) I had a military member (father of a student) come to talk to the class. He discussed the terrorism threats in South America. His fears are justified. It is alarming how what I learned that day is coming true.

Thank you again for your insight and excellent reporting.

God's speed.
Carolyn (Manassas, VA)

-----------------------------------

Father —

I’m not sure how you ended up working for FOX News, but I am enthralled by the work you are doing, bringing the plight and the views of the Venezuelan people to us here in the States. Keep up the good work and God bless!

Sgt. Cory (Ft. Bragg, NC)

-----------------------------------

Dear Father Jonathan:

I like the fact that you are staying ahead of the news and presenting the positive side of Venezuela. Perhaps this country will be another Poland.

Bad news sells, but that is why it is all the more important to present another perspective.

Thanks for taking the risk.
Helen (Connecticut)

-----------------------------------

Welcome to the TV media my wife and I watch most. We find you bring a breath of fresh air to the FNC cast that is interesting and frank. Your contribution to anything we have seen so far is very meaningful and straightforward.

We hope you will continue to enjoy yourself and grow with the experience.

Ray & Bonnie (Haines City, Fl)

-----------------------------------

Dear Father Jonathan: I stumbled on your link on FOXNews.com just now and I wanted to thank you for bringing the right kind of attention to the plea of my home country (Venezuela). We live in the U.S., after emigrating four years ago due to the bleak prospect for the future of my country. I believe that there is much to be done to preserve the values of freedom and dignity that the U.S. stands for and that are so attacked in all circumstances. You can count on my prayers and those of my family from now on, so that your spot on FOX News will start gaining popularity and that Our Lord will always be your closest companion! God bless you!

Irene (Fort Lauderdale, FL)

-----------------------------------

Greetings Father,

Your column was certainly a bit of fresh air after hearing the nonsense that Pat Robertson has been spewing out. I agreed with the balance of "religious leaders should always stay out of partisan politics and, at the same time, they should always have the courage to speak out against injustice, even when politicians are involved." The Christian community is called to be a conscience in a world that appears not to have one of its own. But calling for military action to remove a political leader or the pronouncement of the "judgment of God" on an Israeli leader, who was at least attempting to find peaceful solutions, only discredits this mission.

By the way, having grown up in a very conservative Mennonite home, I am an evangelical with a growing respect for both Catholicism and Judaism. (Try that one on for size!)

Nate

-----------------------------------

Dear Father,

I can't wait to see your pictures. My brother-in-law is from Venezuela, and he speaks secretly and quietly about the goings on involving Chavez, and he does so with fear, despite the fact that he is from a political family with their own powerful ties. To me that is a sure sign of true evil running their government. So PRAYER is desperately needed, and rightly so.

Stay safe and may God be with YOU every breath you take.

FOX Fan in Indiana

-----------------------------------

Father Jonathan,

I am American and my wife is Venezuelan. We have a small house in Puerto La Cruz, but since I am currently working in the U.S., we spend most of our time in there. My wife does have family on both sides (Chavistas and Opposition), so we try to use reason and calmness when we discuss politics. However, we both are frustrated with the government in Venezuela, and somewhat frustrated with the press in the U.S.

I keep reading in the U.S. about all the new schools being built by the Venezuelan government, but I cannot find evidence. I know of no schools being remodeled, let alone new schools being built. Perhaps this is going on in another part of Venezuela. It seems to me the citizens in Venezuela could make better informed decisions on their leaders if there were more transparency. I am surprised there has not been an outpouring of outrage when even local governments seem to be able to keep their budgets and expenditures secret. I am glad to see you in Venezuela reporting on the news, and am particularly pleased to see FOX News elevating the importance of Latin America. Would also welcome any suggestions you have on how we can help the Venezuelan people live up to their potential.

Clark (Beaverton, OR)

-----------------------------------

Father Jonathan,

It's so very good to have a person to pass on the word so clear for us to hear.

Thanks -- B.K.

-----------------------------------

Dear Father Jon,

I am heartened to see another brave soul willing to stand up and shout about the wrongs and rights of our world. Unfortunately, that makes you a target, but you knew that. We the people, need all the voices we can get. For most of us, just getting from one day to the next is nearly all we can manage.

I'm sure you intend to read everyone's input either in person or through a surrogate. If you read this, I will briefly give some personal info to give my thoughts context. I am a Christian, not Catholic. I believe myself to be spiritual, though I don't attend church. My husband and I are neither rich nor poor, financially.

But I I hope you will be able to inform and encourage us all to participate more actively in our own futures. It's not enough to know what's right. Right must be DONE and seen to be done.

I look forward to hearing your voice.

Deb (Albuquerque, NM)

-----------------------------------

Thank you. I couldn't agree more. The happy news, the good news, and the news about peaceful people don't end up in the media. I agree that good news may not sell papers or advertising time on the TV. However, bad news doesn't seem to be helping newspapers make money either. I pray that God will bless your projects and allow the people of the world to see the good. We need it.

Carolyn (Manassas, VA)

-----------------------------------


Dear Fr. Jonathan Morris,

I think it's a victory for freedom of speech and media that FOX News is letting you, a humble priest, cover stories and news for them. Congratulations to FOX News for overcoming the censorship problems that plague mainstream media, and offering a media voice to the millions of
Catholics in Canada and the United States. I've seen you speak on "The O'Reilly Factor" a couple times and I am very impressed with the voice you give to the Catholic Church over the airwaves. I'll say a prayer for you and I hope to see another one of your stories soon.

-----------------------------------

Father Jonathan,

I love seeing you on FOX News. Every time you come on I tell my family to SSSHHHHH. I am a Christian and love to hear what you have say. You did a great job covering those car fires in France. I hope your trip to Venezuela is successful. I am a big fan of yours.

All the best, Noelle

-----------------------------------

Dear Father —

You have made a correct and great decision joining FOX. I saw your first coverage of the millions in Venezuela march. I am a premium member and hope to write again following your progress, adventures and leaving footsteps along the way. Have a great Sunday and may the Good Shepherd watch over you and keep you safe.

A.C. (Miami Beach, Fl.)

-----------------------------------

Write to Father Jonathan Morris at fatherjonathan@foxnews.com.