Links for 01/19/17

by Michael Sean Winters

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At the Working Class Perspectives blog, Jack Metzger looks at how the phrase "working class" covers a group of people of diverse experiences and attitudes and simply lumping them together is a big mistake.

At Mirror of Justice blog, Rick Garnett replies to my post in which I raised concerns about Betsy DeVos' nomination to be Education Secretary. Garnett's arguments are always worth reading but in this instance he betrays one of the problems to which I said DeVos would contribute, namely, a failure to engage those whose perspectives are different with even a modicum of empathy. Garnett quotes Al Shanker, the late head of the United Federation of Teachers, and the quote is unfortunate: "When school children start paying union dues, that is when I'll start representing the interests of school children." But, what I hear in those words is the voice of a man representing underpaid teachers, frustrated that they negotiate in good faith, only to have the political leaders of a town or state come in subsequently and cut their pensions, increase their working hours, and ignore their professionalism. 

The National Catholic Register has published a pastoral letter on Amoris Laetitia from Bishop Stephen Lopes who leads the Ordinariate for former Anglicans. Bishop Lopes, who formerly worked at the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, takes the approach of Archbishop Charles Chaput, namely, pastoral accompaniment must always result n the same place, and the bishops and pastors know where that place is in advance. Kinda funny hearing this from a man who oversees a group of Catholics who were, until a few years ago, Anglicans who did not subscribe to the Catholic Church's teaching on the indissolubility of marriage.

From the "truly strange" folder: It is funny what one finds on the internet by mistake. While looking for a recording of the Flentrop organ at Holy Name Cathedral in Chicago, I found this "explanation" of the "satanic artwork" at the Mother Church of the Windy City. There is a nice photo of the Flentrop, which has a classic zimbelstern on the facade which the narrator claims is a satanic sign. A zimbelstern is a somewhat rare organ stop that sets small bells or chimes ringing and the star turns while the bells ring. Someone should alert Cardinal Burke to give him something other than Amoris Laetitia to complain about. 


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