Tag Archives: culture

“Make Sure You Tell The Whole Story”

On September 8 – 21, 2013, Dr. Michael Gable, Director, Mission Office, Ms. Melonise Knight, Dr. Jessie Thomas, Ms. Barbara Wuest, Mrs. Donna Goddard, Mrs. Nor-Rita Winters, and I traveled to Ghana, West Africa on a mission trip.  This trip was very important for me because it allowed me to fulfill a promise I had made to my friend and mentor, the late Rev. Paul Rehling. It would be very easy for me to describe the wonderful people I met: Most Rev. Gabriel Mante – Diocese of Jasikan, Most Rev. Peter Atuahene – Diocese of …

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Subtle Irony

My wife and I were visiting the East Coast last week where we heard a priest talking about the scriptures.  He was discussing Christ’s statement, “I came not to bring peace but the sword,” and he was explaining that we need to read this passage in the context of the early church.  To be a Christian in Ancient Rome bore severe consequences that divided you from both your family and the culture of the day. He then went on to cite several historical examples.  People of the day were required to practice worship only in …

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Christ at the Center Home Edition

August 18, 2013: 20th Sunday in Ordinary Time Gospel: Luke 12: 49-53 Jesus said to his disciples: “I have come to set the earth on fire, and how I wish it were already blazing! There is a baptism with which I must be baptized, and how great is my anguish until it is accomplished! Do you think that I have come to establish peace on the earth? No, I tell you, but rather division. From now on a household of five will be divided, three against two and two against three; a father will be …

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The Culture “Wars”

Recently, I came across a phrase that captures nearly perfectly for me where I am in the religious/political discussions of these days. Several years ago I was part of a planning committee for the Annual Meeting of NCCL, an organization of diocesan and parish catechetical leaders. One of the names suggested for possible speakers was Cathleen Kaveny, whom I knew at the time through her columns in Commonweal magazine. I contacted her at the University of Notre Dame; we had a conversation about possible topics; I agreed to get back with her soon. Much to …

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It’s Beginning to Look A Lot Like Christmas… or Is It?

I try to avoid going to the mall for as long as possible, but it’s Christmas time, at least in the eyes of those doing the buying and selling.  So, I went to the mall with my wife and at first enjoyed some of the many signs of Christmas in every store – artificial pine trees obviously trimmed by professional decorators, synthetic snow, colored lights of all sorts, and of course Christmas sales seemingly on every item.  Signs wishing “Happy Holidays” and “Seasons Greetings” to all were everywhere.  All of this was accompanied by the …

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Visiting the Amish, Part II: Living the Questions Now

In my last post I described a visit to Holmes County Ohio, home of a large Amish population. The Amish grapple with the same questions of any religious organization or group of believers. These questions ask how much engagement in the world is appropriate and even necessary for survival and growth, what identifies members to the world as a sign or witness of the group’s beliefs, what is a positive witness, how is the not so positive witness handled by its own organization, and how do members live a healthy expression of individuality and still …

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Game Changers, Part I

“You Lost Me,” screamed the title of my last blog. I based it on the book, by David Kinnaman, by the same title, which focuses on young adult’s angst with the Church. Since then Archbishop Schnurr had three meetings with archdiocesan stakeholders in youth and young adult faith formation. One of the purposes of the conversation was to discover “game-changers” to the youth and young adults’ growing indifference what the Church has to offer. The discussion I was at was complex and mildly contentious yet honest and real. I want to share my “game-changer” ideas. …

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