Saturday, October 3, 2015

Items of Interest: Week of Dominica XVIII Post Pentecosten

Is the Latin Mass the Magic Bullet?
by Fr. Dwight Longnecker (Standing on My Head). «The problems in the Catholic church are not due to lack of reverence at Mass. The lack of reverence at Mass is due to the problems in the church.»

On Abstaining from Communion
by Max Lindenman (Diary of a Wimpy Catholic). «It might also be emphasized that abstaining from Communion needn’t represent a complete severance of a Catholic’s relationship to the parish, or the Church as a whole. Non-communicants are welcome to attend Mass, hear the Word and adore the Blessed Sacrament in the tabernacle. My Aunt Betty spent years out of Communion while waiting for the Diocese of Trenton to annul her first marriage. During that time, she continued singing in the choir, and even switched parishes when she determined that her pastor was an idiot – a fairly full ecclesial life.»

Through African Eyes: Resisting America's Cultural Imperialism
by John A. Azumah (First Things). «The African understanding of biblical authority, sex, marriage, and sin may strike my American liberal colleagues as backward and superstitious. Reflecting on the fact that the PC(USA)’s approval of homosexual practice puts her at odds with her African brothers and sisters in Christ, Susan R. Andrews, moderator of the 215th General Assembly of the PC(USA), observed, ‹They [African Christians] are kind of in their adolescence/young-adult stage of moving out into their own independence, yet still figuring out how to be in relationship with us as their parent church.› This paternalism is sadly typical. The ‹inclusive› West operates with an invincible belief in its superiority. Africa is ‹behind.› It’s not coincidental that ‹Westernize› is often used as a synonym for ‹modernize.› We are accustomed to such condescension. We have a great deal of experience with the white man’s burden of telling the whole world what counts as ‹progressive,› ‹advanced,› and ‹modern.› But we have our own judgments of the West and liberal American Christians. Most African Christians acknowledge the church in the West as their ‹parent church.› But we also see it as a dying church.»

The Pope’s Confounding Consistency
by Peter Manseau (The New York Times). «Francis has said he sees the devil at work in the question of marriage equality; Ms. Davis has said her refusal to grant marriage licenses was ‹a heaven or hell decision.› Whatever sets them apart, what the pope and the county clerk ultimately have in common is more than a few moments together in Washington. As his papacy continues, Francis will likely infuriate people on both sides of our political divide, but it won’t be because he’s fickle. Cool or uncool, the pope is consistency itself.»

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