A recent segment on "The Rachel Maddow Show" features the testimony of an Alaskan Daughters of Charity nun named Sr. Mary Peter Diaz and how it helped defeat a Koch Brothers-led effort to deny health care expansion in the state.
"Married priests and women deacons should be reintroduced as soon as possible. That would bring new dynamism to the church," Dietmar Winkler, the future dean of Salzburg University's Catholic theological faculty, told the Austrian daily Salzburger Nachrichten in an interview during the Salzburg Festival.
He said he could not see why men who feel called to the priesthood should be forced to remain celibate. Asceticism, which religious feel called to, is a charism that could not be forced on people, Winkler said.
NCR Today: A Christian group against poverty and hunger asked U.S. presidential candidates how they would help if elected.
NCR Today: Memoir from Guantanamo; world's mayors meet at Vatican; Catholic circus priests; Newark disputes ban on selling headstones
Robert Mickens' column calling for a new way of choosing bishops is most timely. Although the Code of Canon Law of 1983 (c. 377) says that the pope freely appoints bishops, papal appointment is contrary to the church's centurieslong tradition of the election of bishops by the clergy and people of the diocese.
As a big, well-heeled Presbyterian church nearby has been cutting ties with its mainline Protestant heritage in rebellion against the denomination's full inclusion of gays and lesbians, I find myself declaring that the congregation is "on the wrong side of history." I speak it with puffed-up authority as a conversation stopper, implying that I discern with an eagle eye who's going with the historical flow and who's not.
Not long ago, I went to a talk at MIT where one of the presenters, a computer science professor, offered an amusing anecdote about his 2-year-old daughter, who had begun talking more and more. He was surprised, he said, when after the conventional "Mommy" and "Daddy" and "Yes" and "No" that were his daughter's very first words, the next articulate thought that came out of her mouth was, "Skip ad!"
NCR Today: Why should the Jews, of all minority groups in our culture, be begrudged the emotional space in the public arena to speak of their legitimate fears?
NCR Today: Los Angeles gets three new auxiliary bishops; Pope Francis reminds the world to care about poverty; a drop in income for the German church.