Yesterday at RealClearReligion, Nicholas Hahn put up a snarky slideshow of what he considers the ugliest churches in the world. I agree that many of the churches he included are indeed ugly and believe, firmly, that beauty is an essential characteristic of Being for the Christian, so the beauty of our churches is a matter of real concern.
Last week, there was good news in the fight against abortion. The State Senate in New York voted down an attempt to expand the right to late term abortion. Unfortunately, Gov. Cuomo is now refusing to endorse the rest of the bill, which is focused on women's health, unless the abortion expansion language is added back in. Shame on him. But, kudos to Democratic State Senator Ruben Diaz, Sr. who has long supported the right-to-life. Here is the powerful speech he delivered to his colleagues (h/t to Democrats for Life of America for the link!):
Of all the many issues our nation faces, affirmative action remains one of the trickiest, especially when it comes to student admissions policies at universities. For better or worse -- and the "worse" side of the ledger has gotten longer as the modern university has become increasingly unmoored from its historic roots in liberal education -- a college degree is a ticket to a better life in America, an America that for centuries did not much care about improving the lot of racial minorities.
By their fruits....I hope everyone who has had kind thoughts about Edward Snowden, the young man who stole property that was not his and leaked it to the press, will think twice about this man's actions. His decision to go on a tour of repressive regimes seeking refuge tells us all we need to know. A true martyr accepts the consequences of his actions. This Snowden fellow has decided to make nice with some of the world's most repressive opponents of free speech.
I was trying to figure out the politics of the Farm Bill's defeat and what it says about the state of politics in D.C. today. But E.J. Dionne, in this morning's Washington Post, said everything that needs to be said.
A Happy Feast to all my Boricua friends, both those on the island and in the diaspora on this, their patronal feast, The Solemnity of the Nativity of St. John the Baptist. Wish I was in San Juan for the Mass!
The Fortnight for Freedom kicked off Friday night with a Mass at the Basilica of the Assumption in Baltimore. As I wrote last week, I do not like it when Masses are turned into political rallies, although I must confess that this year, the rhetoric was less heated than last, less of a focus on the culture wars and more of a focus on the good the Church does in society. This is a welcome change in tone.
I have long suspected that Eric Metaxas is two parts politician, three parts marketing guru and one part evangelical Christian. A toxic mix. Now, he has noisily quit an evangelical group committed to immigration reform because he believes, apparently erroneously, that the group took money from George Soros. There are a couple of stories in the Scriptures about those who were scandalized when the Lord ate with tax collectors and sinners.
Over at Vox Nova, Morning's Minion pens a "Catholic Defense of Obamacare." The article is in response to a truly alarming post at Catholic University's new business school. I hope we can expect better next time from the new school. We can certainly rely on Morning's Minion to always explain Catholic social teaching in all its clarity and commitment to justice.
Here is a news story in the Staten Island Advance, about Cardinal Timothy Dolan visiting a mosque. Evidently, the visit went well. I wonder how much more credible and persuasive the USCCB's religious liberty campaign would be if they mentioned the very real, direct, threats to the religious freedom of America's Muslims more frequently?