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Lenten commentaries on farm workers

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Interfaith Action of Southwest Florida offers a series of Lenten commentaries on farmworkers and their Campaign for Fair Food in the context of each week's lectionary. The commentaries are written by Florida clergy and offer the opportunity to reflect on each Sunday's readings and how they relate to efforts for dignity and justice in the fields. These are ideal for sermon preparation or individual devotional reading: www.interfaithact.org/lentencommentaries2010

Deal Hudson v. Sr. Carol? Not a Hard Choice

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So, NOW Deal Hudson decides he likes the USCCB! Just the other day, he was attacking their anti-poverty program, the Catholic Campaign for Human Development. Now, however, the USCCB is opposing the final health care bill, he is scandalized that some Catholics have reached a different conclusion. He is shocked – shocked! – that the Catholic Health Association, in a statement from CHA head Sr. Carol Keehan, has taken a position that “puts them in direct opposition to the Catholic bishops, who have stated unambiguously that the Senate health-care bill leaves the door open for federal funds to be used for abortions.”

Mar. 15, St. Louise de Marillac, Founder

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Today is the feast of St. Louise de Marillac, the 350th anniversary of her death.

Louise was born in 1591, the illegitimate daughter of Louis de Marillac, a well-connected widower. Her mother's name is not known. Her father acknowledged his "natural" daughter and placed her with her aunt, a Dominican nun at Poissy. When he died, his second wife removed Louise from the convent and placed her with a poor woman to learn household skills.

Beck and Call: Looking for Social Justice in the Wrong Places

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Almost overnight, Glenn Beck has become Irritator in Chief. He sends legions of left-leaning Americans into fits of apoplexy with a deft turn of phrase. His laser-tongue attacks are typically vile but his method is impeccable. He knows how to rile.

His latest poison arrow was aimed at Christians who think social justice has something to do with the Gospels. It doesn't, he declares, instructing his followers to bolt any church that sponsors such causes.

Beck hates socialiam and believes social justice is its handmaiden. Anything smacking of it it is likely in his calculus to lead to the dreadnaught of Big Government.

I'm not convinced that he is seriously targeting churches, however. Churches are not real threats, he seems to say, mostly potential ones. After all, very few parishes would be found guilty of sticking their necks out for social change aimed at justice (notable, mostly isolated exceptions, of course). Their relative silence on health care is but the latest evidence.

The Vatican's DA on sex abuse: 'False and slanderous charge against the pope'

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Amid Germany’s mounting sexual abuse crisis, which threatens to engulf not only the pope’s brother but potentially Benedict XVI's record as Archbishop of Munich from 1977 to 1981, the Vatican took the rare step yesterday of making its chief sex abuse “prosecutor” available for an on-the-record interview. Monsignor Charles J. Scicluna, a Maltese priest and canonist who works as Promoter of Justice in the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, sat down for an interview published in L’Avvenire, the official newspaper of the Italian bishops’ conference.

The following is an NCR translation of the Scicluna interview, conducted by veteran Italian journalist Gianni Cardinale. The Italian original can be found here: http://www.avvenire.it/Chiesa/intervista+pedofilia+scicluna_201003130801409170000.htm

INTERVIEW
The Vatican’s DA: “The Church takes a hard line on pedophilia”

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