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What Catholic bishops can learn from Hurricane Sandy


 

The bishops should understand that casting (the church) as a militantly right-wing political organization clouds its Christian message of generosity and social reconstruction visible every day in parishes such as St. Francis and in the homeless shelters, schools, hospices and countless other Catholic entities all over the nation.

E.J. Dionne, Jr., Washington (DC) Post / Minneapolis (MN) Star Tribune

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St. Francis de Sales Catholic Parish of Rockaway Park, N.Y., is the center of hurricane relief areas for the community. People come for clothes and other assistance in the school gymnasium. Photo: John Minchillo, Associated Press

November 25, 2012 | To say that the Belle Harbor neighborhood on New York City's Rockaway Peninsula was slammed by Hurricane Sandy understates the case. Like many other parts of the region, it has suffered the kind of devastation we usually associate with wars.

In these circumstances, people turn to government, yes, but they look first to trusted friends and to neighborhood institutions that combine deep local knowledge with a degree of empathy that arises only from a long connection with residents of a particular place.

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Series | How Rome Didn't Decline and Fall (Yet), Part 1

  • The Vatican Occupation of America
  • A Tragi-Comedy In Three Acts
  • Part 1: No God Before Me

Bill Annett, American Logo, Salem (OR) News

November 25, 2012 | I remember as a little boy in our small town saying something derogatory about the Catholic church within the hearing of a catholic man, who not only upbraided me but reported the event to my father. I was punished by being forced to go to the man and apologize and – characteristic of my Dad – I was instructed to write an essay on tolerance. (Or as we say in contemporary America, “Religious freedom.”) It was a great idea on Dad's part, but something intervened which I can't recall, and I never did complete the penance by composition. My life has probably been incomplete as a result.
          
We Americans are so fixated on protecting our freedom that we will carpet bomb anybody who challenges our worldwide endeavor to make everybody as free as we are. And religious freedom is at the top of our list.

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Maryknoll: Vatican has dismissed Roy Bourgeois from order

  • In interviews Bourgeois focused on the rights of conscience of Catholics and "the importance of people of faith and members of Maryknoll to be able to speak openly and freely without fear ... of being dismissed or excommunicated."
  • SOA Watch Activist Arrested by Military Police
  • Churchgoers, save yourselves

Joshua J. McElwee, National Catholic Reporter

Thanks to Evergreene Digest reader Dominique Diaddigo for this contribution.

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Roy Bourgeois (NCR photo/Joshua J. McElwee)

November 19, 2012 | Roy Bourgeois, a longtime peace activist and priest who had come under scrutiny for his support of women's ordination, has been dismissed from the Maryknoll Fathers and Brothers, which he served for 45 years, according to the congregation.

The Vatican's Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith made the dismissal in October, according to a news release issued Monday afternoon by the Maryknoll Fathers and Brothers.

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Related:

SOA Watch Activist Arrested by Military Police, Hendrik Voss, SOA Watch

  • Thousands Gather at the Gates of Fort Benning, GA, to close the SOA/WHINSEC
  • 3-day mobilization culminates with mass die-in and funeral procession to memorialize the victims of SOA/WHINSEC violence and US miliarization.
  • Nashua Chantalk, 60, of Americus, GA, crosses over the fence to carry the protest onto the military base; faces six months in federal prison.
  • SOA Watch Meets with White House Deputy National Security Adviser: Lessons Learned

Churchgoers, save yourselves, Eric Stuberg, Minneapolis (MN) Star Tribune

  • Your influence is waning, but this election, you're doubling down.
  • Child abuse in my church
     

Minnesota Teen Denied Confirmation For Supporting Gay Marriage

  • Earlier this year, a fifth-grade teacher at St. Joseph’s Catholic School in Moorhead, Minn., was fired because she questioned the Catholic Church’s stance on gay marriage, Minnesota Public Radio reports.
  • Churchgoers, save yourselves
  • All Families, All Saints

Meredith Bennett-Smith, Huffington Post

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Lennon Cihak holds up the sign that he photographed and posted on his Facebook page and was ultimately denied taking part in his Catholic Church confirmation about three weeks ago in Barnesville, Minn. (AP Photo/The Forum, Dave Wallis)

One Catholic teen's Facebook post reportedly cost him his confirmation last month after a picture of him holding a sign urging people to vote for "equal marriage rights" was spotted by his priest at a Minnesota church.

Rev. Gary LaMoine of the Assumption Church in Barnesville, Minn., allegedly denied Lennon Cihak the religious rite of passage after seeing him online holding a sign altered to criticize the Minnesota Marriage Amendment, the Forum of Fargo-Moorhead reports. The amendment would have changed the state’s constitution to define marriage as between one man and one woman.

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Related:

Churchgoers, save yourselves, Eric Stuberg, Minneapolis (MN) Star Tribune

  • Your influence is waning, but this election, you're doubling down.
  • Child abuse in my church

All Families, All Saints, Bradley Schmeling, Gloria Dei Lutheran Church (St. Paul, MN)

O Minnesota, Is that what you would have us do?  To have each of us pull down the shades before we pick up our children and twirl them around, giggling in delight?  To make promises and build lives outside the view of everyone else?  To sneak into hospital rooms, pretending we’re a good friend?  To interpret our commitments, our promises, our our families as sin?
 

All Families, All Saints

O Minnesota, Is that what you would have us do?  To have each of us pull down the shades before we pick up our children and twirl them around, giggling in delight?  To make promises and build lives outside the view of everyone else?  To sneak into hospital rooms, pretending we’re a good friend?  To interpret our commitments, our promises, our our families as sin?

Bradley Schmeling, Gloria Dei Lutheran Church (St. Paul, MN)

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November 1, 2012 | I’m humbled by the invitation to be here tonight. It’s a joy to be with you at this important time.  My partner, Darin, and I have only lived in Minnesota since this summer. We moved here from Georgia, a state that already has a constitutional amendment that defines marriage as between a man and a woman.

Darin was living in Minneapolis when we met at a conference.  I only knew Minnesota by reputation.  Of course, I knew about the density of Lutherans.  But I also knew Minnesota to be a state with a strong commitment to community life: a place where the safety net was more secure, schools that ranked high, health care that is more accessible, the home of Hubert Humphrey, Paul Wellstone, Ollie and Lena, and that big burly Paul Bunyon. It’s a testimony to the power of love that Darin was willing to move from a state that’s predictably blue, at least on the weather map, to the red clay of Georgia.

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Churchgoers, save yourselves

  • Your influence is waning, but this election, you're doubling down.
  • Child abuse in my church

Eric Stuberg, Minneapolis (MN) Star Tribune

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November 1, 2012 | I know the church well. My father is a minister; my grandparents were gospel singers until they were too old to sing. I was a poster child for our denomination at a young age, preaching by the time I was 16. It is this past and my love for my family that makes me worry about the future freedoms of the Christian church.

I have a fearful respect for the power of religion, and for the power of a well-spoken message to people who honestly want to please God. I will spare you personal details of my sick feeling when I realized how terribly wrong I had been, as if I had been given the cure for cancer only to find that the active ingredient was long taken out and replaced with a disgusting version of self-righteousness.

Full story...

Related:

Child abuse in my church, Jeff Weis, Change.org

  • Bishop Robert Finn: Resign as Bishop of the Catholic Diocese of Kansas City - St. Joseph, MO.
  • Denying communion to those who disagree
     

Americans United Says Taxpayers Have Right To Challenge Church Control Of Federal Program

  • Watchdog Group Tells Court That Public Has Right To Question Bishops’ Restrictions On Program To Help Sex-Trafficking Victims
  • Keep partisan politics out of our pews

Americans United

Submitted by Evergreene Digest Contributing Editor Lydia Howell

This article is made possible with the generous contributions of all reader supported Evergreene Digest readers like you. Thank you!

October 24, 2012 | When the federal government lets a church group impose religious doctrine on a publicly funded program, taxpayers have the right to take the matter to court.

That’s the viewpoint put forward by Americans United for Separation of Church and State in a friend-of-the-court brief filed with the 1st U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals today.

Full story...

Related:

Keep partisan politics out of our pews, James Salt, Catholics United

  • It is past time to require the IRS to enforce the law.  Tax exemptions must be withdrawn from religious institutions that engage in partisan politics.  No wobbling, no ducking.
  • Catholic Hierarchy’s ‘Fortnight For Freedom’ Campaign Is ‘Thoroughly Misguided’
  • Is America on the Verge of Theocracy?
     

Vatican II: Gone but not forgotten

  • Five decades after sweeping reforms were proposed to update the Catholic faith, the church stands at a crossroads.
  • Vatican II, 50 Years On: The Sunlight That Shines Today
  • Nuns, Faith & Politics

John Gehring, Special to Los Angeles (CA) Times / Minneapolis (MN) Sttar Tribune

This article is made possible with the generous contributions of
all reader supported Evergreene Digest readers like you. Thank you!

Sister Simone Campbell, left, leads a "Nuns on the bus" tour. Photo: J. Scott Applewhite, Associated Press

October 16, 2012 Fifty years ago this month, the Catholic Church embarked on a period of soul-searching that reverberated far beyond St. Peter's Basilica in Rome. Pope John XXIII called Catholic bishops across the globe to the Second Vatican Council,  opening the windows of a monarchical church to the modern world.

The first Catholic president, John F. Kennedy, sat in the White House. Clergy infused the civil rights movement with moral transcendence. These were heady days for religious progressives.

Full story...

Vatican II, 50 Years On: The Sunlight That Shines Today, Charles P. Pierce, Esquire

  • And Good Pope John did it smiling. This would be a joyful revolution and nothing would ever be the same again.
  • Catholic Church '200 years behind,' Cardinal says before death

Nuns, Faith & Politics, Moyers & Company <http://billmoyers.com>

  • On a road trip of faith and politics, American nuns spread the word: Paul Ryan’s budget would hurt those already struggling to make ends meet.
  • Don’t Mess With the Nuns
     

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