Friday, November 2nd, 2012
2 November 2012
Posted by catholicsensibility under bishops
, Politics  Comments
I enjoy reading news outlets from beyond the US borders. The Vatican media is telling its readers that Catholics will decide the US elections. Pennsylvania Catholics are shifting to the president by five percentage points, at least, from four years ago. Thanks to that, there’s no swinging in the keystone state. About one-third of registered Iowa voters have already submitted ballots. I see lots of hand wringing over bishops getting into the political fray, but a few things on that:
Lots of Catholics have already voted. I like early voting because it throws expectations out the window, and makes partisan campaigning close to Election Day even more irrelevant.
Let the bishops speak. I don’t have any problem with them chasing alienated Catholics into doing the exact opposite of what they’re being asked to do. These bishops don’t realize that even Catholics who agree with them don’t like them and don’t like how they conduct themselves as governors of the Church. It’s going to take a lot more than being on the winning side in an election. Or the right side.
2 November 2012
Not only is beauty itself not enough, but the bishops stress that the church is not a storehouse for treasures:
§ 143 § Art chosen for the place of worship is not simply something pretty or well made, an addition to make the ordinary more pleasant. Nor is the place of worship a museum to house artistic masterpieces or artistic models. Rather, artworks truly belong in the church when they are worthy of the place of worship and when they enhance the liturgical, devotional, and contemplative prayer they are inspired to serve.
The standard for visual art would seem to apply in principle to liturgical music. Does art appeal to liturgy, devotion, or contemplation? If so, then it would seem to belong in a special way.
All texts from Built of Living Stones are copyright © 2000, United States Conference of Catholic Bishops, Inc. All rights reserved. Used with permission.
2 November 2012
Posted by catholicsensibility under My Family 1 Comment
Our daughter has always been very hands-on with the family pets. They tolerate handling from her they resist mightily with me or my wife. She can sit our cats up in her lap like babies. We try it and they squirm away. Both cats will try and “pet” her. Ginny, below …
My favorite picture is the one just above.
2 November 2012
Women and men in religious life have a role to play:
69. Religious, for their part, find in their consecrated life a privileged means of effective evangelization. At the deepest level of their being they are caught up in the dynamism of the Church’s life, which is thirsty for the divine Absolute and called to holiness. It is to this holiness that they bear witness. They embody the Church in her desire to give herself completely to the radical demands of the beatitudes. By their lives they are a sign of total availability to God, the Church and the (brothers and sisters).
The fact that the Church has religious orders is itself a witness to the results of evangelization. No problem there.
As such they have a special importance in the context of the witness which, as we have said, is of prime importance in evangelization. At the same time as being a challenge to the world and to the Church herself, this silent witness of poverty and abnegation, of purity and sincerity, of self-sacrifice in obedience, can become an eloquent witness capable of touching also non-Christians who have good will and are sensitive to certain values.
From the regard for celebrities like Mother Teresa to the anonymous witness of religious who serve in hospitals, schools, and other services to non-believers, we know that people notice the work of men and women in religious life.
In this perspective one perceives the role played in evangelization by religious men and women consecrated to prayer, silence, penance and sacrifice. Other religious, in great numbers, give themselves directly to the proclamation of Christ. Their missionary activity depends clearly on the hierarchy and must be coordinated with the pastoral plan which the latter adopts. But who does not see the immense contribution that these religious have brought and continue to bring to evangelization? Thanks to their consecration they are eminently willing and free to leave everything and to go and proclaim the Gospel even to the ends of the earth. They are enterprising and their apostolate is often marked by an originality, by a genius that demands admiration. They are generous: often they are found at the outposts of the mission, and they take the greatest of risks for their health and their very lives. Truly the Church owes them much.
So religious need not be in the high profile spots or front lines of preaching to people. And it should be said that religious both inside the cloister and outside of it are valued by the Church, as noted here by Pope Paul VI.
2 November 2012
Posted by catholicsensibility under Miscellaneous Leave a Comment
Getting ready for next Tuesday’s big event.
Attended school for election officials today. Got my pin, too. Two hours of new procedures, a few new machines, and connecting with the teams at the various voting locations. For the first time, I’ll be working in my home precinct. Usually I have to vote in advance–they don’t always assign us to our voting location, and we’re not permitted to leave a site to vote. Or do other things. Some of the other officials like to be the first to cast a vote. Like many of my brother and sister Iowans, I went ahead and voted today at the school. Election Day is a long day for us in Iowa–I like to get voting taken care of so I can pay attention to helping others vote.
We arrive on site at 6AM, set up our stuff, take our oaths, and get ready to open the doors at 7. Most people sail through the lines and vote in a handful of minutes. We have set procedures for registering voters on Election Day (see if you can do that in your state) for assisting voters who need it, even if they can’t leave the car. We have to make sure everybody behaves themselves. Lots of stories were exchanged–unusual things happen on Election Day, as you might imagine. Some people have been working for decades.
At school today, the county auditor noted a few things. Iowa polls are open longer than any other state–14 hours. We also have forty days of voting before Election Day. Turnout has already well exceeded thirty percent of registered voters. (In 2008, it was 22%.)
Blogging will be light to non-existent on next Tuesday. Now you know why. Get out and vote. If you are in Iowa and not registered, you can register and vote on Election Day. If you live in another state, you have time to contact your county auditor, get information, be prepared to register, find out if redistricting has changed your voting place, and be prepared to exercise your responsibility for civic participation.