Saturday, January 03, 2004
I could have titled this "No Dogs or Catholics Allowed"
UK Telegraph: Windsors in the doghouse
As the New Year begins, the Fabian Society is seeking to build on the recommendations of its monarchy commission. In a modest step, there are plans for a private members' Bill, introduced in the Lords with cross-party support, for abolishing male primogeniture, removing the religious bar on the heir marrying a Catholic and repeal of the Royal Marriages Act, under which the monarch must approve all unions.
posted by Patrick Sweeney at 11:18 PM Permalink
The Nation of Islam's Chief of Staff invokes the hierarchy of the Catholic Church
Scotman: The cult "taking control" of Michael Jackson's life
[Leonard] Muhammad also dismissed "absurd" rumours that Farrakhan is looking into ways to gain control of The Beatles’ back catalogue by bailing out Jackson, who owns it, financially. He added that whatever friendship he had with Jackson did not necessarily extend to Farrakhan. "If someone’s a Catholic, that doesn’t mean he knows the Pope," Muhammad said.
On the other hand, if Cardinal Sodano were released from his other duties to advise Topo Gigio, the Pope would know about it -- which is exactly the analogy here.
I want to add that there is no scandal involving Topo Gigio, I only wanted to provide an example of celebrity with similar gravitas.
posted by Patrick Sweeney at 10:58 PM Permalink
On the Air
Bishop Wilton Gregory, president of the USCCB on ABC: This Week Epiphany Sunday.
posted by Patrick Sweeney at 10:42 PM Permalink
Friday, January 02, 2004
Another Example of the Western Disease
Maryknoll.org: Yearning for a world that is peaceful
This point was the stand-out for me:
U.S. response to the terrorist attacks on September 11, 2001 – a response that does not address the root causes
The 9/11 highjackers were Saudi middle class children of privilege.
As Wahabbist doctrine of resentment and envy informed them: the Christians and Jews hold the wealth and power of the world. It belongs to us, so kill them.
The root causes, Maryknollers, are the achievements of Western Civilization, and the disaster that is Islamic civilization.
posted by Patrick Sweeney at 10:13 PM Permalink
Thursday, January 01, 2004
National Review; Victor Davis Hanson: The Western Disease
In liberating 50 million people from both the Taliban and Saddam Hussein it has lost so far less than 500 soldiers — some of whom were killed precisely because they waged a war that sought to minimalize not just civilian casualties but even the killing of their enemies. Contrary to the invective of Western intellectuals, the American military’s sins until recently have been of omission — preferring not to shoot looters or hunt down and kill insurgents — rather than brutal commission. While the United States has conducted these successive wars some 7,000 miles beyond its borders, it also avoided another terrorist attack of the scale of September 11 — and all the while crafting a policy of containment of North Korea and soon-to-be nuclear Iran.
In the National Review Corner Rod Dreher comments on the New York Times interview with David Macaulay who creates a moral equivalence between a fictional right-wing church in Texas and the real threat from al Qaeda.
posted by Patrick Sweeney at 7:28 PM Permalink
Ending the year, starting the new year.
I went to Mass on 12/31. It was a funeral Mass. I said goodbye to my last uncle, my namesake as well. As I look back I saw what an influence he was on me. He was what you'd call a white collar worker, a reader, and a history buff, and very devoted to the Catholic Church -- all of which in time I became. So I won't put him in heaven now, but I will do the Catholic thing and pray for the repose of his soul.
12/31 is the feast of St. Sylvester, Pope -- we recall him as the first pope not to die a death of violence. He had lived through the last (and greatest) persecution by Diocletian -- then Constantine issued the edict of toleration for Christians in 312. What hapenned next? The Arian heresy -- denial of the Trinity and we live with this heresy to this day.
posted by Patrick Sweeney at 1:40 PM Permalink
Tuesday, December 30, 2003
posted by Patrick Sweeney at 11:02 PM Permalink
USA Today: How wider use of [emergency contraception drugs] could quiet abortion fights
Some traditional abortion foes are sitting out this debate.
But the article text only cites organizations which oppose the use of emergency contraception drugs because they believe life begins at conception.
Question for the readers: What traditional abortion foes support the use of emergency contraception drugs as an alternative to abortion?
posted by Patrick Sweeney at 2:35 PM Permalink
More under-reported stories
posted by Patrick Sweeney at 12:39 PM Permalink
Wraping up Christmas
Since we are now in the Christmas season by the reckoning of the Church and in the post-Christmas season by the retailers (who had a "Holiday Season", not a Christmas season.)
I wanted to post a bit more on how Christmas came to be December 25. I had in mind a long post to mention that the conventional wisdom that Christmas was chosen to replace Sol Invictus -- the feast of the unconquered sun was wrong.
The date was chosen more or less to compete with Sol Invictus as the older Saturnalia was fading out and other influences were reaching into the Empire from Celts and Germans. But others did a far better job than I could have, I point you to them:
Lane Core: The Blog from the Core "Why did we celebrate Christmas yesterday?"
Touchstone: Calculating Christmas
Journal of Social History: Battle for Christmas
We're moving towards a forced sort of cultural uniformity of the "Holiday Season" -- with its wacky diversity from the reality of the December 25 - the birth of Christ to Ron Karenga's 1966 creation of Kwanzaa.
posted by Patrick Sweeney at 12:28 PM Permalink
Peggy Noonan: The Banners
Why are rich people afraid of the Virgin Mary?
An excellent and courageous opinion piece from fellow New Yorker Peggy Noonan. It's very good, so please read the whole thing and pass it on to your friends.
posted by Patrick Sweeney at 11:25 AM Permalink
Wild about Jen [Jenniefer Lopez]
"It's important for Jen that the kids be raised Catholic," says the actor [Ben Afffleck], who describes himself as a "lapsed Protestant" from a mostly Episcopalian family. "But the most important thing for kids is that they know they're loved."
posted by Patrick Sweeney at 8:52 AM Permalink
New York Post: Fetus is ripped out after slay
A woman who convinced her husband she was pregnant - and was even thrown a baby shower - killed a pregnant acquaintance and carved the fetus from her womb, authorities said yesterday.
In a crude way, I suppose, Effie Goodson was doing something pro-choice.
She chose to have a baby, just not her baby. This is the great evil: to believe that we have the power of life and death. The story is as old as Cain and Able.
Media watchdog: the New York Post and Newsday carried the story. the New York Daily News and the New York Times did not at least as of 8:47ET 12/30/03.
posted by Patrick Sweeney at 8:46 AM Permalink
Monday, December 29, 2003
KFMB: New Californian Gold Rush
Californians are rushing to file hundreds of lawsuits against the Roman Catholic Church before the year-end deadline established under a state law that opened a window for old molestation claims.
posted by Patrick Sweeney at 11:40 PM Permalink
Taipei Times - Brazilians turn to cult rites at New Year's
Millions of worshippers carry out ritual sacrifices to Afro-Brazilian deities to ask for good fortune in the nation's tough timesIt couldn't hurt, could it?
posted by Patrick Sweeney at 11:29 PM Permalink
More on under-reported stories
An anonymous reader contributed this one: the closing of Catholic parishes. Besides the immediate loss to the local Catholics, the spiritual loss of the presence of God in these communities is never given the prominence the story deserves and this is especially so when the parish closed is in an area with numerous Catholics.
I have another item, this one was in New Oxford Review: the second great scandal - theft by priests and staff from donations given to the Church.
This one you can read The Second Greatest Scandal in the Church by Michael Ryan.
Crux News is the web site of Michael Rose and other contributors.
posted by Patrick Sweeney at 9:02 AM Permalink
Sunday, December 28, 2003
Explaining the Nativity Scene
The Franciscan Friars and Sisters of the Renewal and the Catholic Evidence Guild explain the Nativity scene in St. Patrick's Cathedral, answer questions, welcome people, and distribute prayer cards.
I've been there the past three days from 1 to 4 PM.
My best story: a sister asked a six-year-old boy "Do you pray to Jesus?" He answered with vehemence: "I pray every night!".
Here's a bit of Cathedral trivia you won't see elsewhere on the net:
The red hat of the cardinal with the round brim, flat crown, and tassels is the galero. One of the reforms of the Church has been to eliminate the physical galero while retaining it in the coat of arms of the cardinal. A cardinal when installed by the Pope is now given a red biretta (this one has wings or horns) and zuchetto (the skullcap).
The Cardinals who received the galero are John McCloskey, John Farley, Patrick Hayes, and Francis Spellman. These four galero hang from the ceiling.
The legend is that their souls remain in purgatory until their hats fall down.
posted by Patrick Sweeney at 9:58 PM Permalink
Readers are invited
to help me identify the top ten Catholic stories of the year. (that's the easy one) and the top ten under-reported stories of the year (here defined as significant events in the domain of extremecatholic (Catholic Church, media, politics, technology, etc.)
By reported I mean covered in mainstream print and broadcast media, not blogs or discussion boards.
The email address is extremecatholic at nyc.rr.com
An example of an under-reported story is the continuing conflict between parents and diocesan bureaucrats and even bishops on the content of sexual education programs in Catholic schools.
posted by Patrick Sweeney at 8:47 PM Permalink
Jakob Nielsen: Top Ten Web Design Mistakes of 2003
No need to reproduce the list here. Jakob is the goto-guy for web design.
posted by Patrick Sweeney at 8:44 PM Permalink
Newsday: Baby Jesus Statue Found in the Gutter and Now Back In His Manger
Baby Jesus was safely back in his manger Sunday morning after the small statue was mysteriously taken from the Nativity scene at St. Pius X Roman Catholic Church in Plainview the previous night, Nassau police said.
posted by Patrick Sweeney at 8:13 PM Permalink