National Catholic Reporter

The Independent News Source

NCR Today

Hate: America's real security threat


"This is our most serious public safety issue and a national security threat to America," reads a billboard in Oracle, Arizona.

Surely the message must refer to Osama Bin Laden, still on the loose, I thought, or perhaps to lax safety measures at airports. But no.

According to the Arizona Daily Star, the message is accompanied by a photo of a Latino family.

It is surely a sign of the times. It has become socially acceptable in growing sectors of our society to hate Mexican immigrants -- desperate border crossers risking their lives, fleeing poverty and hunger.

The quote is from Pinal County Sheriff Paul Babeu, the Star reported, although he denies having anything to do with the putting up of the billboard.

The newspaper report was read as part of a recent weekly liturgy in downtown Tucson, led by Redemptorist Fr. Ricardo Elford.

More than \"gotcha\" journalism


The race for California's governor has gone from interesting to very interesting in the last few days, thanks to a "gotcha" journalism drama that stars some main players on the Golden State stage: undocumented immigrants and Catholic church.

Republican candidate Meg Whitman has a lot of (her own) money; she ran eBay for several years. She has thrown a record $119 million of her own funds into her gubernatorial campaign. She's running against Democrat Jerry Brown -- now 72, once governor of the state back in 1975-to-1983, trying for it again.

Church closings (very likely) coming to Brooklyn


According to the New York Daily News:

Catholic leaders in Brooklyn and Queens, N.Y. named Monday a "diocesan day of prayer" as word spread that churches in Brooklyn and Queens may close as part of an unprecedented reorganization.

The Diocese of Brooklyn, faced with budget trouble and a shortage of priests, is considering shuttering churches and merging parishes in Brooklyn and Queens, the Daily News reported Sunday.

Archbishop Di Noia's homily at today's Red Mass


This morning, at St. Matthew’s Cathedral in Washington, the John Carroll Society is hosting the annual Red Mass. As always, Washington Archbishop Donald Wuerl will be the principal celebrant. Vice-President Biden will lead the delegation from the executive branch and Chief Justice Roberts is expected to lead the delegation from the judicial branch. The homilist is Archbishop J. Augustine DiNoia, O.P. who was kind enough to send a copy of his sermon to NCR. It is quite the tour de homiletic force.
-- Michael Sean Winters

The Invocation of the Holy Spirit at the Start of the Judicial Year
Ezekiel 36:24-28 / Romans 8:26-27 / John 14:23-26

Archbishop J. Augustine Di Noia, O.P.
Secretary, Congregation for Divine Worship and the Discipline of the Sacraments

The Social Network: It's all about character


Last week an 18-year old Rutgers University student, Tyler Clementi, took his own life after two students videotaped him having a sexual encounter with another male, then posting it on the Internet. I was listening to NPR on the way home from the theater today and the talk was about privacy issues in the age of the Internet. Perhaps we are all guilty of hurtful gossip as children and teenagers, saying things about people, that even if true, we have no right to say. Perhaps we failed to think of the consequences of our actions, or maybe we were curious, jealous, or angry at some infraction. Most of all, perhaps we didn’t think before we acted.

A Frightening Theology


About two years ago, I interviewed Jeff Sharlet on Interfaith Voices. He had just published a book called The Family: The Secret Fundamentalism at the Heart of American Power. Now, he has a new book called C Street: The Fundamentalist Threat to American Democracy.

What he describes is not garden variety Christian fundamentalism. The adherents of this theology believe that Jesus wants them to work with men of power throughout the world (and they do mean men, not women) to achieve the goals of Christianity. Their “heroes” are people like Stalin, Hitler and Mao – who are not remembered for the ends they sought, but for the means they used to achieve power and keep it.

Priest leaves $1 million to St. Ambrose University


Fr. Joseph Kokjohn, who died May 21, 2009, at the age of 80, left a $1 million legacy gift to St. Ambrose University, Davenport, Iowa, the university he called home for more than 60 years.

The Rev. Joseph E. Kokjohn Endowment for Catholic Peace and Justice has been established to further the education of St. Ambrose students in the Catholic tradition of peace and justice.


Subscribe to NCR Today


NCR Email Alerts


In This Issue

November 20-December 3, 2015


Some articles are only available in the print newspaper and Kindle edition.