It was the spring of 1993, Good Friday to be exact. I had known Monsignor Lorenzo Albacete for only a few months. That night, Lorenzo and his beloved brother Manuel, and a third person whom I do not recall, came into Kramerbooks & Afterwords for dinner. They were seated at table 40, right near the stairs that lead down to the prep kitchen. I can remember it as if it was yesterday. The waitress took their order and I stood by her as she wrote it down. When all three of them ordered lamb chops, I interjected.
This morning, Monsignor Lorenzo Albacete died. I will have a fuller tribute to this most remarkable man and priest on Monday. But, as soon as I learned this crushing news, I knew I had to re-read an article he wrote in the NYTimes. There, he wrote: "The roots of grief arise from a wound deeper than the psychological or the cultural. It is at that level in ourselves where we decide what we can or cannot expect of life, what is just or unjust, what is the purpose and value of our existence." The roots of grief go very far down this morning. I had expected from life more time with Lorenzo.
Heading to the airport to catch a flight to Kansas City for NCR's 50th anniversary celebration. I can scarcely say how proud I am to be associated with NCR and with all the talented people who produce what is clearly the liveliest webpage in the Catholic blogosphere.
I had hoped to have a book review ready to run today, so I could post in advance, but I am not done with the book yet! So, I am taking the day off and, now, so are you faithful readers of Distinctly Catholic! See you on Monday.
Over at America, Meghan Clark discusses solidarity in Catholic Social Teaching on a podcast. Good stuff.
"It sounds like you have a wild man over there...."
A beautiful reflection by Jason Welle, SJ, at Millennial. The issue of physician-assisted suicide is not going away and it should be a point on which progressives and Catholics can stand together against the libertarian sensibility that pushes for euthanasia as the best way to cope with an aging population. Human dignity and love is a better way to honor our elders.
If you live in a state with a competitive Senate or House race, you are probably already tired of clicking past the campaign ads that are now swamping the nation’s television screens. The hope that TiVo and other devices would minimize campaign advertising has not come to fruition. And, in the post-Citizens United world of campaign spending and contributions, there is not just more and more advertising but more and more of it is negative.
Archbishop Chaput's comments were worth a rebuttal. These by Bishop Thomas Tobin of Providence are only worthy of note, not comment.
Over at Crux, Robert Christian on why progressives shouldn't be afraid of subsidiarity.
The National Catholic Register has published an interview by Edward Pentin with Archbishop Joseph Kurtz, President of the USCCB and a synod father. I am glad they printed the questions, not just +Kurtz's answers. The questions are all edgy, trying to bait the archbishop into providing fodder for divisiveness. To his great credit, +Kurtz does not take the bait and provides nuanced responses. Good for him.