Wednesday, May 02, 2012

Is Modernity Old Fashioned?

It's difficult to argue with Fr. Kramer's observations:

I attended a university parish for seven years that rejected this approach. For all its honest good in inviting young adults to take on roles of leadership and ownership in the church, it unfortunately fed an image of the church as being unsure of its own teaching and one in which the local community, while important, was insulated the experience of the wider, universal church and cut-off from (and often at odds with) the local archbishop.

The Second Vatican Council was a necessary council for a necessary reform, in my opinion. However, much of what has been done in the name of the Council in the succeeding fifty years has resulted in many bad things. However, things appear to be turning for the better. I was amazed at the vitality of the youth that I discovered when we came to South Eastern Texas. Young adults here weren't ashamed to boldly proclaim their Catholic faith. They devoured the writings of the popes, prayed the rosary, and arranged carpools with other friends to travel en masse to priestly ordinations, not just because they thought ordinations were cool, but because they knew many of the men being ordained and wanted to support them in their vocation and ministry. They were deeply involved in social justice work, including Habitat-for-Humanity and in founding 40 Days for Life. They embraced more traditional devotions and more traditional liturgy, not just the traditional latin mass (the Extraordinary form), but also the modern (Ordinary) form of the mass celebrated as the Second Vatican Council actually intended for it to be celebrated.

Tuesday, May 01, 2012

Written Step by Step

I have developed an extraordinary respect for Msgr. George Lemaître, a belgian priest and physicist better known today as being the first to propose what we now know as the theory of the Big Bang of the origin of the universe. His writing offers a wealth of information, not only in regard to his science, but also into his embrace of the necessary complementarity of faith and reason.
Our world is now understood to be a world where something really happens; the whole story of the world need not have been written down in the first quantum like a song on the disk of a phonograph. The whole matter of the world must have been present at the beginning, but the story it has to tell may be written step by step.

- from “The Beginning of the World from the Point of View of Quantum Theory” Nature 127, 706-706 (09 May 1931)
Lemaître was quite conscious of the fact that the universe is intelligible, that is, it is rational and capable of being understood by human beings insofar as human beings are gifted with reason and cognition.
Scientific progress is the discovery of a more and more comprehensive simplicity... The previous successes give us confidence in the future of science: we become more and more conscious of the fact that the universe is cognizable.

— from O. Godart and M. Heller (eds.), Cosmology of Lemaitre (1985), 162.
The human endeavor into the study of science is a challenge incumbent on us to pursue and embrace. In short, if truth is one, nothing we discover in the natural world scientifically that is true will contradict what has been revealed supernaturally by God. This relatively simple principle dwells at the heart of the Catholic Church's centuries-old engagement with science, physics, astronomy, and medicine. As Blessed John Paul II was fond of asserting, Be not afraid!

Monday, April 30, 2012

Who is man?

This is the fundamental question that must be asked: Who is man? Man is a being who bears within his heart a thirst for the infinite, a thirst for truth -- a truth which is not partial but capable of explaining life's meaning -- since he was created in the image and likeness of God. The grateful recognition that life is an inestimable gift, then, leads to the discovery of one's own profound dignity and the inviolability of every single person. Hence the first step in education is learning to recognize the Creator's image in man, and consequently learning to have a profound respect for every human being and helping others to live a life constant with this supreme dignity.
- Pope Benedict XVI, Message for the World Day of Peace (January 1, 2012)

Sunday, April 29, 2012

More On Reconciliation

Brilliant video:

Once again: If it's been a long time since you last confessed, go now! Make it a regular part of your spiritual life and formation. God's outpouring of grace and mercy is abundant, but it is not forced on us. Too many people today do not believe in sin or do not think they are capable of committing sin. Yet, none of us is without sin! Why refuse God's free offer of forgiveness and reconciliation? Go!

Hat-tip to Fr. Andrew McAlpin, OP.


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