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Showing posts from January, 2014

Why wage a battle against the HHS mandate?

My latest article at the HLI Truth and Charity forum is the final contribution to a four-part series on the HHS mandate. The first three articles explored the level of cooperation with evil required for business owners to comply with this mandate.

In my article, I argue that we will eventually have to fight assaults on religious liberty. Our culture is growing more and more hostile to religion.  It is better to fight now than to allow the government to gain an even stronger foothold and try to fight later.

Please take a look at my article as well as the other three pieces of the series. I would love to know what you think as well!

Disciples of the Lamb of God--Sam-I-am

In my last post, I tried to explain how gratitude means understanding that we are unworthy of all our blessings, but God bestows them anyway out of mercy. Our gratitude must be active and an effort to imitate that mercy. We can never shut anyone out of our lives because we deem them to be unworthy.

Pope Francis offers a similar message in yesterday's Angelus:
“What does it mean for the Church, for us today, to be disciples of Jesus, lamb of God?” asked Pope Francis. “It is a good task! As Christians we must replace malice with innocence, force with love, pride with humility, and prestige with service. Being disciples of the Lamb means living not like a besieged citadel, but rather as city set on a mountain, open, welcoming and supportive. It does not mean adopting a closed attitude, but rather proposing the Gospel to all, showing by the witness of our lives that following Jesus makes us freer and more joyful”. I think this is Pope Francis's papacy in a nutshell. It is all about…

Gratitude and Mercy

For those who have read my blog over the years, you may have noticed that I find themes or words that become the focus. These are not consciously crafted, but patterns that evolve. Sometimes it is a word or theme that permeates a liturgical season like Lent or Advent. I am finding that the start of 2014 is developing a theme for the year and it is Gratitude.

In this post-Christmas season of thank-you notes it is easy to contemplate gratitude. We all have those gifts that we absolutely love and for which we cannot say "thank you" enough. Then there are those that we look at and say, "Well, that is interesting." And while we are tempted to roll our eyes and grumble about having to deal with more useless stuff, it is always good to remember that it is rare that a gift is given for any reason other than to bring you joy. Sometimes it misses the mark, but the intent was there so our thanks may be for the intention rather than for the gift itself and that is ok.

The init…

Proclaiming the Good News face to face

I just read about this amazing parish evangelization effort by a parish in St. Louis. Parishioners are trained to go door to door in their neighborhood and invite the community to join them. The thought of that sends shivers through my introverted soul. As noted by one of the parishioners:
“All four of us felt very uncomfortable going (on) cold calls, door to door. We thought, ‘Are we Jehovah’s Witnesses? Are we Mormons?’ I mean this is something Catholics typically don’t do,”  But maybe this is exactly what Catholics should be doing. I am very comfortable sitting with my keyboard and proclaiming the Gospel with blog posts and articles. As one who does not always like to be center stage, it is a bit unnerving for me to know that my name, picture, and written words are indelibly etched on cyberspace, but except for the occasional internet stalker who tracks me down wherever I publish in order to spew ad hominem vitriol, my personal space is not breached.

The problem is that my written w…

Prayer to the Magi

Fr. Z offered an excerpt from the book Helenaby Evelyn Waugh (author of Brideshead Revisited, a book I thoroughly enjoyed) which is a prayer to the Magi by St. Helena, mother of the Emperor Constantine. 
This is my day, and these are my kind.
“Like me, you were late in coming. The shepherds were here long before, even the cattle. They had joined the chorus of angels before you were on your way.
How laboriously you came, taking sights and calculating, where the shepherds had run barefoot! How odd you looked on the road, attended by what outlandish liveries, laden with such preposterous gifts!  You finally came to the last stage of your pilgrimage and the great star stood still above you. What did you do? You stopped to call on King Herod. Deadly exchange of compliments in which began that unended war of mobs and magistrates against the innocent!  Yet you came and were not turned away. You too found room before the manger. Your gifts were not needed, but they were accepted and put caref…

Subsidiarity, solidarity, and being a good steward

If you are friends with Catholic author Simcha (Somechop) Fisher on Facebook you may have seen the rather lengthy discussion about an essay by Pat Buchanan that questioned whether or not the income disparity between the "haves" and the "have nots" is really the crisis we are being told it is. He also stated that the standard of living now considered as dire poverty was considered normal middle class living in the not too distant past.

Well this got a great number of people all riled up. Quite a few of those who were upset are receiving government assistance of some kind and were highly offended that Pat Buchanan would suggest that they may not be as poor as they think they are.  There was all sorts of talk about how we needed to raise the minimum wage to guarantee that even the workers at McDonald's could support a family on their pay. 

I waded into the fray in the comments just briefly, but I did not think the Facebook comments could do the discussion much justi…