An extended piece on a theological topic.

Sham Rock of Ages

Submitted by frlarry on Sat, 03/09/2019 - 10:21

St. Patrick (whose feast day, March 17, happens to fall on a Sunday - the 2nd Sunday of Lent - this year) is known for converting the Irish people from paganism to Christianity. In his effort to do so, he chose the shamrock as an image of the Trinity. How curious it is, then, that Satan has chosen to beguile us with a variety of shams intended to turn us away from the path of true faith, to present us with, as it were, a sham rock of ages.

Alluding to Daniel 2:34-35, Jesus declared to Simon (see Matthew 16:17-20)…

Is scientific morality possible?

Submitted by frlarry on Sat, 11/03/2018 - 14:16

There is such a thing as natural theology, a theology that doesn't presume the truth of revealed scripture from any religious tradition. Socrates, Plato and Aristotle had interesting approximations (acknowledging that there are limits to what finite human beings can know about an infinite God) to a monotheistic concept of God that is as far above paganism as quantum physics is above Aristotle's concepts of motion, attraction, form and matter, etc.

On Miracles, Grace and the Human Existential Dilemma

Submitted by frlarry on Tue, 12/06/2011 - 14:43

Before I go deep into this topic, I need to give a nod to C. S. Lewis for his book, Miracles, in which he deals with this problem from a fairly comprehensive perspective. I also give a nod to John C. Polkinghorne, who presents a somewhat different perspective from Lewis' supernatural intervention idea in his books, particularly in Belief in God in an Age of Science. (See, especially, Chapter 3, "Does God Act in the Physical World?")

Pope Suggests Patience in Struggle With Evil

Submitted by frlarry on Mon, 07/18/2011 - 01:49

Benedict XVI is recommending patience in the struggle with evil, since, as St. Augustine says, "many at first are weeds and then become good seed."

The Pope said this today before praying the midday Angelus with pilgrims who had gathered at the papal summer residence in Castel Gandolfo.

He commented on the readings for today's Mass, particularly the parable of the sower in the Gospel.

Two heresies are better than one?

Submitted by frlarry on Thu, 03/17/2011 - 15:10

That seems to be the motivation for many mergers of what the Church calls "ecclesial communities.1 " One of the more interesting mergers from an historical point of view is the union, in 1961, of the American Unitarian Association (which consisted of ecclesial communities united in the belief that God is not trinitarian, except for more conservative sects such as the Jehovah's Witnesses) and the Universalist Church of America (which consisted of ecclesial communities united in the belief that everyone will eventually go to heaven) to form the ecclesial community of Unitarian Universalism.

Pope Benedict XVI reflects on the contributions of St. Francis de Sales.

Submitted by frlarry on Wed, 03/02/2011 - 15:45

Pope Benedict XVI reflects on the contributions of St. Francis de Sales, focusing on his magnum opus, Treatise on the Love of God, in "St. Francis of Sales: Great Master of Spirituality and Peace." Of particular interest is an observation in his opening statement:

Non-Ecclesial Christianity and Secular Catholics

Submitted by frlarry on Thu, 02/10/2011 - 15:50

Let's prescind, for the moment, from the recognition that the phrase "non-ecclesial Christianity" is an oxymoron, and consider the demographics and beliefs of those who describe themselves as Christian, but without belonging to any given ecclesial community (much less belong to an actual church). To consider this, I will appeal to a study by a Protestant polling organization known as the Barna Group. See "Christianity Is No Longer Americans’ Default Faith."

The unforgivable sin

Submitted by frlarry on Tue, 09/28/2010 - 13:49

In Luke 12 and Mark 3, Jesus warns us that blaspheming the Holy Spirit cannot be forgiven.

I believe we would be misunderstanding him if we took this to mean, literally, that if we say irreverent things about the Holy Spirit, we incur everlasting punishment. What this is fundamentally about is the rejection of the source of grace.

Internet Freedom Preservation Act

Submitted by frlarry on Fri, 10/02/2009 - 15:06

Sen. Byron L. Dorgan (D-N.Dak.) plans to reintroduce his "Internet Freedom Preservation Act" (S. 2917 from the 109th Congress) to complement the House version (H. R. 3458 from the current Congress), introduced by Rep. Edward J. Markey (D-Mass.) on July 31st of this year. These bills are intended to work in concert with recent FCC rules, recently under discussion at the FCC. See the following: