DC’s Opportunity Scholarship Program, which provided tuition money to poor students that seek a shot at a better education by going to Catholic schools, is dying a slow death in Congress. The President of the University of Notre Dame, Father John Jenkins, as well as the President Emeritus, Father Ted Hesburgh, and the priest who runs the program in Education Initiatives at Notre Dame, Father Timothy Scully, have written a joint letter to Senator Richard Durbin and Education Secretary Arne Duncan, calling for the program to be extended, not killed.
Today is the feast of Bl. Alvaro of Zamora, "a major figure in the reform of the Dominican Order in Spain".
"He also built 'station' chapels, each representing a scene from Our Lord's passion, and has therefore been credited with originating devotion to the Stations of the Cross in the West, but this had become widespread with the popularity of pilgrimages to Jerusalem, encouraged by indulgences being attached to them in the fourteenth century."
Head of U.S. Catholic bishops to speak at BYU George's talk will be titled "Catholics and Latter-day Saints: Partners in the Defense of Religious Freedom."
It was apparent, just after the fall of Communism, that the "industrial" portion of the military industrial complex wasn't going to give up on the conflict that easily. War planners might change plans, politicians might alter their rhetoric, the world itself might breathe a bit easier as the nuclear clock eased back away from midnight. But the weapons' producers were another matter.
So it is good to see the church again, this time in Britain, stepping up to make the case against new generations of nuclear weapons. The group in Britain was advancing -- in dramatic fashion at the site of a nuclear weapons manufacturer -- the same point as that made last July by Archbishop Edwin O'Brien, former head of the Archdiocese for Military Services and now archbishop of Baltimore, to an audience of military and diplomatic officials.
Three articles today speak about American politics at a deeper level than the day-to-day partisan bickering and that warrant a careful reading.
The first two both focus on populism. George Will writes about the electoral limits of populism, noting that the last successful presidential campaign run on purely populist grounds was that of Andrew Jackson. Further, Will recognizes that populism can serve as a check on the ambitions of more mainstream politicians, but it can almost never convert itself to a governing philosophy.
Leon Wieseltier points out that the populism of former Governor Sarah Palin is fake at its core, that it is merely a new entry in the anti-elitism of some elites against that of others. After all, someone who has a best selling book, was elected to the governorship of her state, and mounted a campaign for national office is not exactly a political outsider no matter how often she repeats the word “rogue.”
Press release from the U.S. bishops' conference:
WASHINGTON -- A series of workshops slated from April 15-16 to November 4-5 will be offered around the nation to prepare priests and diocesan leaders for implementation of the revised Roman Missal.
The seminars are sponsored by the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops Committee on Divine Worship and the Federation of Diocesan Liturgical Commissions as part of educational efforts for introducing the latest version of the Roman Missal, which incorporates the most significant changes in the Liturgy since 1974. Other associates in planning include the National Organization for Continuing Education of Roman Catholic Clergy (NOCERCC) and the National Association of Pastoral Musicians (NPM).
Seminar attendees will study the historical and theological context of the new Missal and will look at some of the new translations to deepen understanding of their depth and richness.
The Roman Catholic Bishop of Brentwood, England, Thomas McMahon, led about 800 peaceful demonstrators in prayer Monday (Feb. 15) as they issued a "call to repentance" over the manufacture of nuclear weapons. It was an interfaith event protesting at the Aldermaston Atomic Weapons Establishment in Berkshire, England. They declared that nuclear weapons are "a great idolatry" and "an affront to the power of God."
"Fra Giovanni was a simple and most holy man in his habits, and it is a sign of his goodness that one morning, when Pope Nicholas V. wished him to dine with him, he excused himself from eating flesh without the permission of his prior, not thinking of the papal authority."
"He never retouched or repaired any of his pictures, always leaving them in the condition in which they were first seen, believing, so he said, that this was the will of God. Some say that Fra Giovanni never took up his brush without first making a prayer. He never made a crucifix when the tears did not course down his cheeks, while the goodness of his sincere and great soul in religion may be seen in the faces and attitudes of his figures."
--from http://www.amazon.com/Lives-Artists-Oxford-Worlds-Classics/dp/019283410X/ref=sr_1_2?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1266458530&sr=1-2#noop> The Lives of the Artists, by Giorgio Vasari, the man who coined the term "Renaissance".
A new Washington Post-ABC News poll finds that the vast majority of Americans are vehemently opposed to a recent Supreme Court ruling that opens the door for corporations, labor unions, and other organizations to spend money directly from their general funds to influence campaigns.
As noted by the Post's Dan Eggen, the poll's findings show "remarkably strong agreement" across the board, with roughly 80% of Americans saying that they're against the Court's 5-4 decision. Even more remarkable may be that opposition by Republicans, Democrats, and Independents were all near the same 80% opposition range. Specifically, 85% of Democrats, 81% of Independents, and 76% of Republicans opposed it.
In short, "everyone hates" the ruling.