Distinctly Catholic: In naming Bishop Leonard Blair to become the next archbishop of Hartford, Conn., the Holy See has sent what can only be described as a counter-sign.
Sources say that as soon as tomorrow, the Holy See will name a new Archbishop of Hartford. The incumbent, Archbishop Henry Mansell, turned 75 one year ago and, under canon law, submitted his resignation. +Mansell has gotten high marks from all my Church friends in Connecticut and, coming after the less happy tenure of Archbishop Daniel Cronin, there were plenty of feathers that needed to be unruffled. Hartford lacks the prominence of, say, Chicago, but it is important nonetheless.
Kudos to William Bole for his discussion of comments by Red Sox Game 4 hero Jonny Gomes. I went to bed as soon as the game was over and did not hear these comments. They are well said, and Bole is right to call them to our attention for the counter-cultural reality check they provide.
This article at The New Republic by Jonathan Cohn explains the real issue facing the implementation of the Affordable Care Act, namely, what will happen to the rates and premiums and deductibles people pay. Long after the website is fixed, this is what will matter to people and it is vital that the administration find someone - Kathleen Sebelius is not that person - who can explain how it all works with the ease that Cohn displays.
Over at RightWingWatch, our friends at People for the American Way captured a radio interview in which Pastor Kevin Swanson warns darkly:
The individualism of feminism has been devastating to this country. I'd say you ought to say no to the Girl Scout cookies too. I don't want to support lesbianism, I don't want to support Planned Parenthood, and I don't want to support abortion, and if that be the case I'm not buying Girl Scout cookies.
Anyone who has cared about peace in the Middle East should be acquainted with the always-thoughtful writings of Yossi Klein Halevi. Over at RealClearPolitics, Peter Berkowitz pens a review of "Like Dreamers: The Story of the Israeli Paratroopers Who Reunited Jerusalem and Divided a Nation," and explains why this is a "must-read" book for any and all who are serious about their hopes for peace in the Holy Land.
Over at American Catholic, "Motley Monk" takes Bp McElroy to task for his recent article at America calling on the Church in the United States to place poverty at the top of its agenda alongside abortion. He quotes from then-Cardinal Raztinger's 2004 statement which begins, "Not all moral issues have the same moral weight as abortion and euthanasia." There is the shell game.
Over at the Wall Street Journal, Nicholas Hahn complains that the U.S. bishops have exceeded their competence by wading into matters such as tax policy and military spending. I am guessing that Mr. Hahn understands taxes have to do with justice -- he probably thinks most taxes are unjust! -- and that justice is a cornerstone of the moral law bishops are charged to uphold.
Wednesday night, I tuned in to watch “EWTN News Nightly” with Colleen Carroll Campbell. She was interviewing two congressmen, Rep. Henry Cuellar, Democrat from Texas and Rep. Tim Huelskamp, Republican from Kansas. At a certain point, the conversation turned to the problem-ridden rollout of the health care exchanges under Obamacare. Campbell noted that “it could be months before the problems are solved,” and then asked Huelskamp if he thought “a delay or repeal” was now likely given all the problems.