Ad Limina Apostolorum (Blog) | St. Augustine's Library
Tuesday, October 25, 2005

I'm out of town from October 27-30, at the National Catholic Youth Conference in Atlanta, GA. If any other bloggers are there, look me up. It's my intention, as always, to do some blogging on site, but that sort of thing paves the road to you-know-where. See you all in a few days.

# posted by Jamie : 4:18 PM


Bishop Vasa is apparently actively promoting the Dead Theologians Society in the Diocese of Baker. (ht, Mark Shea)

# posted by Jamie : 12:41 PM


Monday, October 24, 2005

Bishop apologizes for aide's remarks on Protestant service 

Colorado Springs' Catholic bishop has issued an apology after his assistant angered local Catholics by saying they shouldn't attend services at Protestant churches.

[Bishop's assistant Peter] Howard told The Gazette that Catholics should not attend Protestant worship services even if they also celebrate Catholic Mass, saying such services could 'confuse' some Catholics and that their participation denigrates the Catholic faith.
(scare quotes in original)

Sheridan wrote that Howard's comments to The Gazette caused 'a great deal of distress and hurt' among Christians and non-Christians - though he believes the hurt was unintentional.
Okay, okay, good...
Howard's comments were significant because some of the diocese's 130,000-plus Catholics attend both Protestant and Catholic services. New Life Church, Colorado Springs' largest congregation, is said to attract thousands of Catholics every weekend. (more)

The good bishop Sheridan, I think, is doing some public damage control, which is all too necessary as shepherd of the Mecca of American Evangelicalism. But when 'thousands' of your sheep are venturing out of the sheepfold on a weekly basis, it's hard to imagine a little shepherding isn't in order. (I'm very confident that Sheridan, taking into account the death threat he posed to me on these pages last month, is more vigilant in this regard than this piece gives him credit for; in fact, like Amy, I would love to see the original letter to find out how much of an 'apology' it really is).

Anyone who has worked with Catholics, especially youth, who routinely attend 'Bible' services at evangelical churches knows they are, generally speaking, the most confused of Catholics. I had a young man ask me, in a youth group, why he had to learn about all these saints, statues and devotions, since 'all that mattered is his relationship with God, anyway'. My suspicions were confirmed afterwards, when I found out his parents were reinforcing his CCD with a summer Bible camp at the local Baptist church.

It's true that, for intelligent and well-grounded Catholics, with a solid prayer life and thorough understanding of their own tradition, occasional attendance at non-Catholic services can be very beneficial. Especially if the benefits go both ways: I've known good Catholics who attend Evangelical services mainly as an opportunity to show a good Catholic witness to those who've probably never seen one.

# posted by Jamie : 8:28 AM


Cardinals call on Pope to save Latin from last rites 

When Cardinal Angelo Scola, the Patriarch of Venice, opened the synod, he gave his address entirely in Latin, sending many of the 241 participants rushing for headsets to hear a translation. Nothing could have better illustrated the Church's fading proficiency in its own language.

One of the synod's 50 'propositions' to the Pope is that the language should feature prominently in Masses at major international events, where Catholics speaking many different languages are present.

According to reports, only one synod participant spoke Latin every time he took the microphone: Latvian Cardinal Janis Pujats, the Archbishop of Riga. He did the same at the previous synod in 2001, when a disconsolate Pope John Paul II commented: "Paupera lingua latina, ultimum refugium habet in Riga" (Poor Latin, it has its last refuge in Riga). (more)

I believe in English that's called 'showing off'.

# posted by Jamie : 8:23 AM


Friday, October 21, 2005

The Karmic Wheel o' Catholic Topics Comes Round to Material Cooperation 

Dear sir,

I was wondering if I could ask you a few questions regarding the cooperation of an everyday Catholic in a marketplace that is interwoven with the culture of death. I read your blog on John Kerry, and I already am generally familiar with the Catholic Church's teaching on material cooperation (formal v. material, remote v. proximate, necessary v. unecessary), so you don't need to fill me in on any of that. I am just looking for some imput, as I am a bit scrupulous on the matter.

Let me number my questions:

1) Among the corporations on the new boycott list with regards to abortion is Johnson and Johnson. As I'm sure you know, they produce a wide array of products: Neutrogena, Tylenol, Band-Aid bandages, and a variety of soaps and personal health-related products. If I go to a supermarket that sells these things, and purchase some vegetables, some of the money I spent could go into J&J's pockets when the store orders more of their products. Moreover, if I live with my parents and they buy these products, am I to boycott them? I understand that a "proportionate reason" is necessary for remote material cooperation, is the mere preference of a product sufficient reason? The bank where I have my money is also on the boycott list, am I to terminate my account even if the bank is my best option locally (which it might be)?

Material cooperation is more or less remote, by degree, from the immortal act in question. The act in question being abortion, and its presumable subject being Planned Parenthood (P.P.), to supply funds directly to P.P. would be proximate. To buy products from a company, a portion of whose funds go to P.P., is fairly remote. To shop at a store which stocks products from such a company is very remote. To live with parents who shop at such a store is so remote as to be laughable. In fact, the chuckles probably began one earlier.

There is a line, somewhere. For me to tell you where it is crossed, even if it were possible, would not be desirable, because it would be casuistry. Casuistry, for those uninitiated into its joys, is sort of like the 'voting quiz' I took on CNN's website last October. I was asked how I felt about twenty issues, and how strongly, on a scale of one to ten. My answers were then tallied and computed, and within a few seconds I was told how I should vote. My relief at the instantaneous dissolution of my moral dilemma was only outshone by my trembling awe at the beautiful simplicity of the machine which dissolved it. Casuistry is sort of like that, but in ethics.

The application of the eternal law to the temporal demands of human life takes place in the heart of man, and the only machine that does it runs on the virtue of prudence. That doesn't mean no one can give you advice, but it does mean, as I mentioned two weeks back, that I probably can't (since we just met and the whole 'friendship' thing takes a bit longer). But anyone who tells you to boycott your parents because they shop at K-Mart probably isn't a friend.

And shopping at a store which sells J&J products will not directly support J&J, so long as you do not buy J&J products (if it does, the connection is so remote as to be untenable in serious moral discussion). As for buying J&J products and the like, serious moralists disagree. It would depend upon a number of factors, many of which would be specific to your own situation: how much do I really need this product?, do other realistic alternatives exist?, etc. One can hardly compare a vaccine for a deadly disease with mouthwash.

It is these sorts of factors which prudence is able to take into account, in the context of authentic Christian liberty, in the midst of a life of prayer and discipleship. Casuistry attempts to emasculate prudence, by robbing it of its divinely intended role in moral decision making. Casuistry turns these factors into mathematical formulas in a database, rather than the terrain of a spiritual battlefield.

Personally, I avoid J&J products mainly because it's easy to do: products of similar quality are available, usually at a lower price. We switch banks (from First Union, which supports P.P.) as soon as we found another one within walking distance. But I can't point fingers at other patrons of the Green Onion (my preferred nomenclature), because I don't know their circumstances.

2) Is it "sufficient reason" to buy something in that it contributes to the well-being of the economy? Suppose an entire small town gets its employment by working in a factory that is owned by one of the "boycott" corporations. A boycott could cost all thosepeople their jobs. That said, a boycott also does bring results in the battle against abortion. How do I prioritize?

For the first question, no. Other small towns get their employment from prostitution and crack cocaine. Shutting down an abortion mill itself will have its own economic cost, including blows to facility maintenance, security, and medical insurance companies. Economic concerns such as this should certainly play a part in the moral discussion, but I hardly think they take the issue off the table. You prioritize by growing in prudence, and you grow in prudence by acting prudently (and temperately, courageously and justly).

3) Suppose I am enjoying dinner at a restaurant, and my waitress, is doing a great job, even though I notice she looks pale and worn out. I decide to reward her with a 20 dollar tip. As it turns out, she was pregnant, and uses that tip to help pay for an abortion. Am I responsible? Am I required to ask her how she'll spend the money?

For the last question, as one who used to work in the restaurant industry, asking that is a sure way to get a wad of spit in your soup. Without knowledge, of course, there is no culpability. There is, as you imply, a moral obligation to inform your conscience, but asking a waitress if she'll spend her tip on an abortion is not, I should think, a necessary step in this task. Forming one's conscience is a serious obligation, but one that falls within the limits of reason and moderation. One is not required to take every possible step to inform one's conscience, but every reasonable step.

4) In college, I was in a band that played the music of Bruce Springsteen, who, at that time, was supporting John Kerry for president. I didn't vote for Kerry, but do you think I am guilty of scandal? What about purchasing the music of a band that is pro-choice?

Playing Springsteen is never, ever morally problematic.

5) Can people babysit/housesit for people who work for hospitals where abortions take place (these people aren't doctors, but one is a lawyer, and I don't know what their involvement is at all, but I don't think I can play stupid).

See answer to question 1. Sadly, many hospitals have abortion mills within them, often on the same floor where babies' lives are saved. Babysitting and housesitting, again, is so remote that proximity to their moral evil is itself not a problem (so long as they are not abortionists themselves, which would most certainly present a problem, if only that of scandal). Obviously you share no intention of assisting abortions. If anything, your presence in their lives as a witness may be important. Don't play stupid: evangelize.

6) Can one attend a public university that may or may not have ties to less savory affiliates?

See answer to question 1. Public universities inevitably have ties to less savory affiliates. Most are less than savory themselves. To attempt to eradicate every tie to a morally problematic person or institution is to attempt to approximate the life of blessedness on earth. It is an attempt doomed to failure from the beginning. This life is one where we gain virtue by straining against the bonds of sin, not one where we know of no sin, or pretend such. This is not to introduce moral license, but rather to avoid moral rigorism, which deals the death blow to the liberty of the sons of God.

If you can answer any of these I'd appreciate it. I seriously don't understand how to determine if there is a proportionate reason. It seems impossible to completely avoid tangling with evil, but I don't know to what extent I can engage the society that I am in.

Thank you for your time. Mark

You can and must engage it 100%. You are only a part of it for a few decades, which isn't long in the face of eternity. Might as well take advantage of the brief opportunity.

# posted by Jamie : 9:08 AM


Thursday, October 20, 2005

The Site of Martyrdom 

Diogenes comments on Rich Leonardi's visit to the Tower of London:

We were given a 90 minute tour of the cell, the chapel where St. Thomas' body was first deposited, and then the crypt tomb where it now rests. Our gaoler shared many details of St. Thomas' life. Milk Street, on which the boyhood homes of both Thomas More and Thomas a Becket were located, is just off Tower Hill. Young More likely snuck away from his mum to watch a beheading or two (more).

# posted by Jamie : 1:22 PM


Reflections on Statuary 

On visiting St. Patrick's Cathedral in New York this week, I was struck by the monumental structures of stone. In particular, the number of statues carved of stone, which line each interior wall of the cathedral, all the way around the nave. These are the old statues, too. Too many of the statues in newer churches are of wood or plastic, or emaciated strips of metal twisted into fearsome shapes which bewilder the senses.

The old, stone statues, on the other hand, have a certain solidity to them. Rough-hewn, unpainted, stark and unchanging, they seem to stand in a timeless world, sculpted out of the stuff of mountains, while the stuff of flesh passes by underneath, lighting a candle and whispering a prayer. St. Augustine spoke of the nunc stans, the 'now-standing-still' which was the best image he could conjure of God's eternity: the stone statues on the cathedral facade are their own timeless witnesses to the nunc stans - perfected reflections of blessedness, looking down upon the school of frail sinners.

# posted by Jamie : 1:12 PM


Do Catholics not 'Get' Community'? 

While I was at a convention in Tampa earlier this month, I ended up in a long table discussion with a pair of French Canadians, discussing, of all things, the growing number of Evangelical Protestants in the Ontario region. The Catholic parishes, sparsely populated as they already are, are being thinned even further by those who are drawn away to the neighboring Evangelical churches. They asked me, as a former Evangelical myself, to explain what the 'draw' was.

I responded without missing a beat. It has nothing to do with theology, moral conviction, etc. The answer is much more pedestrian: community. Evangelicals get it, Catholics don't. The observation has become so routine that it's hardly worth discussing.

In the Evangelical church I used to attend, you couldn't make it to an empty seat before the service without wading through nine handshakes, seven hugs, three shouts from across the room, and four invitations to lunch afterwards. A visitor, ironically, got not less attention, but about twice as much. Any visitor was invited to a side room after the service was over, for coffee, donuts and a personal introduction and conversation with the pastor. At another church I attended, visitors got a loaf of homemade bread baked fresh that morning, compliments of a group of mothers in the church. When visitors signed a card and dropped it in the plate during the service, they got a home visit from church members the next week, most likely with a hot apple pie. Most refreshing of all is the utter sincerity and generosity with which it was done. Is it a surprise that a huge chunk of our members consisted of former Catholics?

Many of these, I observed, would note that, during their thirty or forty years as a Catholic, they could not recall receiving even one warm introduction while visiting a new parish. It is almost ritualistic: shuffling quietly into a back pew, avoiding eye contact during mass, darting quickly out immediately after communion, and racing out of the parking lot like it's the Indy 500.

Not that Catholics haven't been trying. Many parishes, including our own, have experimented with a 'donut Sunday' at least once a month after mass. These end up being so awkward, contrived and ill-attended that the experiment fails as soon as it begins. Our young associate pastor has started evening meetings for young families, young women and young men, respectively, but these are only attractive for the handful of parishioners who fit the niche and can make the schedule (probably less than 2% of the parish). You could recite a litany of other attempts: invitations by the pastor for visitors to introduce themselves before the opening prayer, extended 'greet your neighbor' sessions during the opening rites, 'greeters' at the church doors (these make me think I'm in Wal-Mart), etc. These inevitably prove to be similarly awkward, contrived attempts to 'impose' community where it doesn't exist. Hence, they fail.

Is the sort of community I'm describing have something innately 'Protestantized' about it, which Catholics would be ill-advised to imitate? Or is it simply that Evangelicals 'get' community, and Catholics don't? If the latter, why?

# posted by Jamie : 10:00 AM


Back on Terra Firma 

I just returned from a three-day excursion to New York City. I had a meeting or two for work-related business, and decided to bring the family along. We stayed in southeast Manhattan, one block from the UN headquarters. All in all, we were very impressed with Manattan (previous trips had been mainly to Brooklyn), especially with Central Park, although I can't imagine actually living there, much less raising a family there.

While on a traveling note, I'll be in Atlanta for the National Catholic Youth Conference October 27-30. If anyone else in St. Blog's will either be attending, or lives in the area, I would love a chance to meet up. Regrettably, I know no one in the area.

# posted by Jamie : 9:58 AM


Friday, October 14, 2005

Don't try this at home 

A far cry from sorcerers, satanists and other practitioners whom he dismisses as "charlatans," Italian exorcist Andrea Gemma fights the devil only with the strength of his prayers and advises Catholics: 'Don't do this at home".

A rotund, expansive Neapolitan, the 74-year-old bishop was the first lecturer to face the Catholic Church's latest crop of budding exorcists at a unique course run by clergy at Rome's Pontifical Regina Apostolorum University. The course began Thursday and will run for several weeks.

# posted by Jamie : 1:27 PM


Wednesday, October 12, 2005

Pope Praises von Balthasar and His Theology 

In Message for Centenary of His Birth

VATICAN CITY, OCT. 10, 2005 ( Benedict XVI says that spirituality does not rob theology of scientific weight but rather gives it coherence.

The Pope made that point in a message written for the centenary of the birth of a friend, Swiss theologian Hans Urs von Balthasar.

"Theology, as and how he conceived it, had to be combined with spirituality; only in this way, in fact, could it be profound and effective," said the Holy Father in his message addressed to the international congress entitled "Love Alone Is Credible," organized at the Lateran University in tribute to von Balthasar.

In his message, Benedict XVI said: "On an occasion such as this, it would be easy to fall into the temptation to return to personal memories, based on the sincere friendship that united us and on the numerous works that we undertook together, addressing many of the challenges of those years," and he mentioned in particular the foundation of the review Communio.

"However, I do not wish to make reference to memories, but rather to the richness of von Balthasar's theology," said the Pontiff. "Hans Urs von Balthasar was a theologian who put research at the service of the Church, as he was convinced that only theology could be characterized by the ecclesial."

Spirituality does not diminish the scientific weight of theology, "but imprints on theological study the correct method to be able to arrive at a coherent interpretation," the Holy Father added. (more)

# posted by Jamie : 7:22 AM


Friday, October 07, 2005

A theological Souter 

From a commenter at CWNews:
Pope Benedict XVI is not turning anything like the way I had hoped. Abuses continue unabated. He does nothing on Card. Mahony or on pro-aborts receiving.

I trust to God he is not a theological Souter!
My God. What are you going to do if he is - try to impeach the man who appointed him? Not vote for him in the next election? Throw some money into a lobbying group to undermine him? Write a letter to your senator?

Talk about a policiticization of religion. The Roman Pontiff is the Vicar of Christ on earth, not some black-robed ninny who pulled some strings with the President to get a job.

# posted by Jamie : 4:12 PM


Sandro Magister casts doubts on conclave leak 

But there are errors in the diary that a jurist cardinal should not commit . . . . This major discrepancy is enough to cast doubt upon the reliability of the 'historical rigor' of the diary.

The rest of the text suggests, rather, that the 'intention' to publish it was a much more combative one: to demonstrate that Ratzinger’s victory was not at all 'plebiscitary,' that it was in question up until the last moment, that it was unduly favored by the fact that Ratzinger was the dean of the college of cardinals, that the time is ripe for a 'new' pope, perhaps a Latin American, and that Benedict XVI should accept these as limiting factors. (
I'll just note, the moment I saw that story, I knew it was bunk.

# posted by Jamie : 1:11 PM


News on Purported Vatican Document 

A forthcoming Vatican document on homosexuals in seminaries will not demand an absolute ban, a senior Vatican official told NCR Oct. 7, but will insist that seminary officials exercise "prudential judgment" that gay candidates should not be admitted in three cases.

Those three cases are:

If candidates have not demonstrated a capacity to live celibate lives for at least three years;
If they are part of a "gay culture," for example, attending gay pride rallies (a point, the official said, which applies both to professors at seminaries as well as students);
If their homosexual orientation is sufficiently "strong, permanent and univocal" as to make an all-male environment a risk.

In any case, the Vatican official said, whether or not these criteria exclude a particular candidate is a judgment that must be made in the context of individual spiritual direction, rather than by applying a rigid litmus test. (more)

# posted by Jamie : 11:58 AM


Bishop Vasa Won't Take It 

Bishop Vasa of the Baker Diocese announces that he is, more or less, flushing the Dallas Charter down the toilet, which will certainly raise more than a few hackles, on both sides of the ecclesial divide. Few will be comfortable with the precedent it sets for spurning policies adapted by the Episcopal Conference. Vasa is a 'give 'em hell' renegade at heart, who has little but distaste for bureaucracy of any sort. He shoots from the hip, if nothing else. Despite the backlash he will no doubt receive, there is something about Vasa's approach which seems to harken back to a . . . well, genuinely apostolic era of the episcopacy. I'll stick with the 'threefold harvest'.

As the Lord asked what the owner of the vineyard would do when he came back to his vineyard to find it ill-kept and unfruitful, so the Lord of our particular harvest will likewise ask each of us, who are tenants of His gracious gifts, what kind of harvest we have produced. I sincerely hope the Lord does not hold us accountable for the harvest of aborted babies that our country produces each year, or the harvest of abused children, or the harvest of pornography, or the harvest of more and more permissive judicial rulings, or the harvest of anti-life legislative actions.

I asked for and committed myself to seek a threefold harvest from and for the Diocese of Baker. The first is priestly and religious vocations from among our own young men and women to serve in the Diocese. The second is a harvest of evangelization, an evangelized Catholic laity and an evangelizing Catholic laity. The third is a harvest of Catholic adults imbued with a deep and solid understanding of the complete package of Catholic teaching as presented in the Catechism of the Catholic Church. As I explained at Mass, this does not mean that I have no passion for youth and child protection or for life issues or for CCD or for Catholic schools, but rather that I hope the promotion and pursuit of these three harvests will also, almost automatically, entail a fruitful harvest in all the others as well. I pray it is so.

As a result of this discrepancy between a new interpretation of the charter and our diocesan policy, the annual charter audit will undoubtedly find the Diocese of Baker, and me as bishop, 'Not in Compliance' and will issue a 'Required Action,' which I am prepared, at this point, to ignore. I say this not because I resist efforts to protect children, but rather precisely the opposite. There are a series of questions that I believe need to be answered before I could mandate such a diocesan-wide program of 'safe-environment training.

UPDATE: See Dominic Bettinelli's critiques at Bettnet.

# posted by Jamie : 10:13 AM


Wednesday, October 05, 2005

Solidarity Sunday at Notre Dame 

From Bill Cork:

The webpage of the University of Notre Dame tells us that October 9 will be Solidarity Sunday. Will they be recalling the Polish labor movement? Nope.

"Solidarity Sunday is as an annual event each Fall semester that highlights our community’s Spirit of Inclusion for gay, lesbian, and bisexual students, faculty, and staff. This event has become an important symbolic event for the Notre Dame community." (more)

# posted by Jamie : 8:50 AM


Tuesday, October 04, 2005

Jimmy Akin is reporting on the cause for the canonization of John Paul I, which is apparently being 'fast-tracked', as the saying goes:

Pope John Paul I, who died in 1978 after a reign of only 34 days, could be the next addition to the growing list of possible papal saints.

"The beatification process for the Italian pontiff has moved swiftly ahead since its 2003 launch, the official in charge of the cause said in an interview marking the 27th anniversary of the pope's death.

"'We have testimony of an apparent miracle which we are evaluating and which we are thinking of presenting to the Vatican,' Monsignor Giorgio Lise told a Catholic website." (

# posted by Jamie : 2:06 PM


The good thing about Mark Shea being back on-line... 

Is that my job is easy. I should just shovel readers in his direction.

Mark on Harriet Miers:

That's about right. Bush has managed to create an almost perfect storm of contempt for his base, coupled with ongoing contempt from people who will always loathe him. This is more than mere bungling. This is active stupidity. Stupidity that may come only once in a generation. Stupidity that works on so many levels. You almost have to admire the sheer elegance of the stupidity. It tempts you to believe in Stupid Design Theory. A magnificent, towering monument to the ability of a single man to do so much wrong with so little effort. (more)

Speaking of Harriot Miers, she has her own blog as well. Who knew?

Mark's got his readers jumping with his proposition that women can be made Cardinals:

Down below, I pointed out that I've been saying for years that one of the effects of Ordinatio Sacerdotalis was to make clear that it is *only* the priestly office to which women cannot be ordained. This means, among other things, that the offices of King and Prophet *are* open to women (and have been occupied by them for centuries, right along side men).One of the consequences of this fact is that I can see nothing in the Tradition that particularly forbids the Church from making laywomen cardinals. I don't have anything particularly invested in laywomen (or laymen) being made cardinals (which is why you haven't seen a lot of entries here on that topic). But I see no reason why it couldn't happen. However, since somebody sent me a link about somebody who is making the same basic point, I thought I'd post a little quickie pointing out that the thought had occurred to me too.Yikes! My comboxes freaked out! (more)

Also: 'On the Square,' the First Things blog, is up and running.

# posted by Jamie : 9:01 AM


Reports from the Front 

Catching up on a few reports on the Synod of the Eucharist via Zenit:

Synod a Chance to Rediscover "Amazement," Says Relator

The most crucial issue for the Synod of Bishops is to rediscover the "Eucharistic amazement" that helped to propel the Christian faith worldwide, said the assembly's general relator.

"The difficulties lie in how to rekindle amazement, generated by the Eucharist, in the many non-practicing baptized persons," Cardinal Scola acknowledged.

"Therefore, the announcement and the personal and community testimony of Jesus Christ to all men are necessary to incite vital and open Christian communities," he said. "Outside of this Eucharistic and sacramental communion the Church is not fully constituted: The Eucharist makes the Church." From this conviction, the cardinal deduced, among other things, the reason why "Eucharistic Communion" requires "ecclesial communion," which led him to pose the question of "intercommunion" -- the possibility that non-Catholic persons might receive communion in the Eucharist -- as one of the issues that will be studied further by the assembly. (more)

Question of Communion for the Remarried Arises

Cardinal Angelo Scola, the general relator of the synod, today mentioned "the diffused tendency of the divorced-and-remarried to Eucharistic Communion, beyond what the teaching of the Church indicates."

"Many of these get divorced and remarried" without annulments, the cardinal continued. "Following the practice of Christian life, some of these manifest serious unease and at times considerable suffering when faced with the fact that the union after the marriage blocks their full participation in sacramental reconciliation and Eucharistic Communion."

Recalling the teachings of Pope John Paul II's postsynodal exhortation "Familiaris Consortio," the cardinal said: "Those divorced and remarried need to be supported by the whole Christian community in the knowledge that they are not excluded from ecclesial communion. Their participation in the Eucharistic celebration permits, in every case, that spiritual communion, if correctly lived, which mirrors the sacrifice of Jesus Christ himself." (more)

Ordaining the Married Isn't an Answer, Says Cardinal

The cardinal considered it superfluous to reiterate "the profound theological motives which have led the Latin Church to unite the conferring of ministerial priesthood to the charism of celibacy."

Instead, he posed this question: "Is this choice and this praxis pastorally valid, even in extreme cases such as those mentioned above?" In some countries, remote Christian communities only have Sunday Mass. In parts of the Philippines, some priests celebrate up to nine Masses on a Sunday. "Being intimately tied to the Eucharist, ordained priesthood participates in its nature of a gift and cannot be the object of a right.

If it is a gift, ordained priesthood asks to be constantly requested for," responded Cardinal Scola, 63. In fact, the cardinal continued, it "has become very difficult to ascertain the ideal number of priests in the Church, from the moment in which this is not a 'business' which should be equipped with a determined quota of team managers." (more)

UPDATE: Be sure to check out Michael Liccioni's comments at Sacramentum Vitae.

# posted by Jamie : 8:15 AM


Under the Patronage of
St. Augustine of Hippo

Contact me:

Ad Limina Apostolorum: An ecclesiastical term meaning a pilgrimage to the sepulchres of St. Peter and St. Paul at Rome, i.e., to the Basilica of the Prince of the Apostles and to the Basilica of St. Paul "outside the walls".

"Augustine of Hippo Refuting Heretic"
(illuminated manuscript,
13th century)

"Jamie . . .
I could kill you in three seconds.
-Bishop Sheridan

Books Recently Read or Currently Reading

John Milbank's Theology & Social Theory: Beyond Secular Reason (next in stack)

Colson Whitehead's Zone One (reading)

Michael Wyschogrod's Body of Faith: God and the People Israel (reading)

J. B. Schneewind's Invention of Autonomy: A History of Modern Moral Philosophy (reading)

Paul Hacker's Ego in Faith: Martin Luther and the Origins of Anthopocentric Religion (finished: 3 stars)

Edward Peter's Modern Guide to Indulgences: Rediscovering this Often-Ministerpreted Teaching (finished: 1 star)

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