President Obama’s State of the Union speech left me scratching my head. It was a far better speech than we have heard him give in a long, long time. Listening to it, I fancied somewhere in DC, there was a bar with a group of former Democratic senators and members of Congress wondering where this guy was during September and October?
Want an example of a "self-referential Church"? Fr. Zuhlsdorf and his readers are offended by the way Holy Communion was distributed at the Pope's Mass in Manila. It is to weep.
Want an example of a Church that is not self-referential? Check out this story on religious women who serve the Chaldean community in Chicago at NCR's Global Sisters report. A study in perseverance and deep, abiding faith.
Yesterday, the nation stopped to remember the life and legacy of the Rev. Martin Luther King, Jr. Alas, in the manner of contemporary holiday-making, there was less remembering than I would have liked, but the same could be said for Memorial Day and Labor Day too. At least in January, we did not have to have a barbeque to mark the day.
In this morning's Washington Post, E.J. Dionne addressed the decaying consensus of the Reagan legacy and its consequent overvaluation of the market as the remedy of all social ills and related undervaluation of the role of government in addressing social ills.
Distinctly Catholic: What most amazes is that he showed his pastoral instincts in countries that were completely unfamiliar to him, and he did so deftly and courageously.
Some rightwingnuts - that should be a word - who especially stoke anti-Muslim xenophobia are taking to the twitter verse to spread fears about the appointment of Rep. Andre Caron to the House Intelligence Committee. Rep. Carson will be the first Muslim-American to serve on the post. Politico has the story.
The terrorist attacks in Paris understandably generated much media attention, and from so many different angles. We learned about the Muslim community in France, about the quasi-feud between Isis and Al-Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula, about the foundational commitment of France to secularism and the limits they place on free speech, and about the state of counter-intelligence, to name just a few. One phrase, however, is found in many of these different reports, on the radio, the television and in print, that I find deeply disturbing.
Here are some links that might interest Distinctly Catholic readers:
In this morning's Washington Post, E.J. Dionne debunks the idea that our government is engaged in massive income redistribution. Turns out that at the state and local levels, the distribution is from the poor to the rich.
Monday, I attended a briefing at the U.S. Capitol by Larry Cohen, President of the Communications Workers of America, and AFL-CIO Executive Vice President Tefere Gebre, both of whom were part of a fact-finding mission to Honduras this past November. It turns out that the Catholic Church and the AFL-CIO are just about the only two organized groups in the U.S. who even discuss the root causes of immigration, and what can be done in both countries to improve the lives of our citizens.
For the indefinite future, because of a changed layout on our homepage, instead of posting multiple links through the day, I will bundle them up in one post that will go up mid-morning.
First, good news for the people of Northwestern Nebraska in the appointment of Monsignor Joseph Hanefeldt as the next bishop of Grand Island. Rocco has a profile.