We all remember the scene in Casablanca when Captain Louis Renault, played by Claude Rains, pronounces him "shocked, shocked" to find that gambling has been going on at Rick's cafe, just before he collects his winnings. I thought of that scene when reading Janet Smith's article at First Things in which she asks who Pope Francis could be speaking about when he suggested that some Catholics are obsessed with certain moral issues to the exclusion of the fundamental proclamation of the Gospel. I can only recall the first meeting of young theologians with the USCCB doctrine committee a couple of years ago at which Dr. Smith spoke. The meeting was called to assess the intellectual tasks of the New Evangelization. Smith gave her standard stump speech against contraception. In fact, the words "New Evangelization" or, for that matter, "Old Evangelization" did not cross her lips until someone asked a question after her talk. It was appalling. Now, she is shocked to think that anyone she knows is obsessed. It is rich.
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In This Issue
- Francis' encyclical an urgent call to prevent world of 'debris, desolation and filth'
- Editorial: Churches can lead the fight against racism
- New family synod document a mixture of welcome, criticism of modern life
- Special Section: Women Today [Print only]
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by Chris Seiple, Religion News Service NCR Today
by Sr. Camille D'Arienzo Conversations with Sr. Camille
by Anne Marie Cox, Catholic News Service Eco Catholic