Church v. State on the meaning of marriage

Until relatively recent times, marriage has been regarded by most of civilized society in sacred terms.  It is precisely this reverence for the married state that led to a fascinating mix of tacit and explicit terminology and tradition in defining what marriage is in social, legal and even physical terms.  (Add to that the interest of the Church in the nature of marriage and you introduce a sacramental dimension that completes what marriage is in moral and spiritual terms.)

Pope Francis' prayer intentions for April

Papal Prayer Intentions Template Pope Francis' Prayer Intentions for

VATICAN CITY, 31 MARCH 2014 (VIS) - Pope Francis' general prayer intention for April is: "That governments may foster the protection of creation and the just distribution of natural resources".

His mission intention is: "That the Risen Lord may fill with hope the hearts of those who are being tested by pain and sickness".

Published by VISarchive - , March 31, 2014


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Same-sex attraction ==> same-sex marriage


It seems to me we need to separate the issues in order to clarify them. (1) Same-sex marriage declared as a constitutional right inevitably comes into conflict with religion and individual conscience. (2) Opening up sexual relationship to same-sex attraction effectively removes procreation as a source of meaning and purpose,inevitably opening it up to all forms of sexual attraction. (3) Same-sex relationship can be regarded as a life-style or as a living out of nature. To those who view it as the latter, viewing it as the former amounts to bigotry.

The outlook for GM...

As everyone knows (or think they know), General Motors Corporation was bailed out by the U.S. Government in the middle of 2009. Technically, however, GM did not get a bailout. Instead, it was sold, under Chapter 11 bankruptcy rules, to a conglomerate headed by the U.S. Treasury. This is why it came to be known as "Government Motors." The conglomerate included the Canada Development Investment Corporation, the Government of Ontario, old GM bondholders and the U.S. and Canadian Auto Worker unions (UAW and CAW).

If it looks like a duck, ,,,

The Pope has taken Jesus' remarks about those who cause others to sin as an opportunity to speak about the scandal of incoherent Christian lives. I especially like his definition of a Christian: "A Christian is a person who thinks like a Christian, feels like a Christian and acts like a Christian." You might call it the "duck analogy". See his remarks at "Pope to Christians: Practice what you preach."

The progressive's "anagogical sense" of Constitutional interpretation

Scripture is written by people. Inspired scripture is written by people under God's inspiration. Inspired scripture is inherently deeper than that which is not. The Church has recognized this point, and discerned three spiritual senses of interpretation (allegorical, moral and anagogical) of the canon of scripture to supplement the literal interpretation. To tease out the literal interpretation, it can be necessary to apply technical means such as historical and literary criticism. What did the original human author intend to convey?

Changing the heart [Reflecting on Matthew 5:17-37]


This Sunday we have a lengthy reading from Jesus' Sermon on the Mount, as reported in the Gospel of St. Matthew. At the beginning of the reading, Jesus informs us that "I have come not to abolish but to fulfill." Among his teachings, we find the following commandments that serve to fulfill the meaning and purpose of the Law of Moses.

Repairing the incoherence of the term "Catholic"

While the author of "Our Secular Future", a piece in America Magazine, has some important things to say about the cultural clash between (what I prefer to call) serious Christians and the increasingly dominant secular progressive elites, the comments that follow the article point to dissent even to his employment of the term "Catholic". Given all the controversy over the meaning of the word "Catholic" and who is allowed, or not allowed, to apply that term to themselves, I propose the following solution:

Fruit of the Spirit vs. the law


St. Paul's letter to the Galatians (especially the part we skipped yesterday due to the observance of an obligatory memorial to Sts. Cyril and Methodius) contains important insights into the spiritual and moral life.

The "New Jerusalem" [Evangelii Gaudium, paragraph 71]

The new Jerusalem, the holy city (cf. Rev. 21:2-4), is the goal toward which all of humanity is moving. It is curious that God's revelation tells us that the fullness of humanity and of history is realized in a city. We need to look at our cities with a contemplative gaze, a gaze of faith which sees God's dwelling in their homes, in their streets and squares. God's presence accompanies the sincere efforts of individuals and groups to find encouragement and meaning in their lives. He dwells among them, fostering solidarity, fraternity, and the desire for goodness, truth, and justice. This presence must not be contrived, but found, uncovered. God does not hide himself from those who seek him with a sincere heart, even though they do so tentatively, in a vague and haphazard manner. 1


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