Tuesday, November 29, 2005

New Instruction Doesn't have Much that's "New"

The new instruction entitled "Concerning the Criteria for the Discernment of Vocations with Regard to Persons with Homosexual Tendencies in View of Their Admission to the Seminary and to Holy Orders" (what a title) has finally arrived (officially). The document itself seems to simply reiterate the Church teaching on homosexuality, as found in the Catechism and various other encyclicals and pastoral letters. It states that men who "practice homosexuality, present deep-seated homosexual tendencies or support the so-called 'gay culture'" are not to be admitted to the priesthood.

The document states, again, that the homosexual tendency is an "objectively disordered inclination." I know some people have needed clarification on this point: although the Church distinguishes between homosexual acts and homosexual tendencies, the tendency itself is considered to be objectively disordered. The act is "gravely sinful," just as a heterosexual act of fornication is.

Here's the document in full. I'm open to comments, particularly on whether or not those with "deep-seated homosexual tendencies" should be allowed to be priests. The other two things - those who practice homosexuality or support the gay culture - seem more obvious.

Monday, November 28, 2005

Oh Canada

Will somebody please vote this guy and his party out of office? Pretty please? Looks like it might just happen tonight. For those of you who aren't familiar, Canada has this funky thing where the minority government can lose it's position of power by a no-confidence vote taken by the Members of Parliament. A no-confidence measure is a motion that someone from an opposing party brings forward, stating that the party in power no longer has the "moral authority" to govern the country. It expresses the "non-confidence" of the people in the leadership.

In this case, if an election is called in January, Paul Martin's party will most likely fall. Let's hope it happens soon. Good riddance.

UPDATE: Martin's government is toppled. Election to be in January. I'll get to vote while I'm home!! Story here.

Friday, November 18, 2005

Save the Earth, Don't Have Kids?

My initial reaction to this was disgust, then anger, and then, well...pity. It must be a pretty sad world where your sole happiness is an inanimate object (the Earth). Members of this group ask that, for the sake of the environment, people don't have any more kids. Let's make the position clearer: we should render ourselves extinct for the sake of the planet.

Whether you're religious or not, one thing should be clear. Your life, my life, and the lives of any children we might help to create, are each worth infinitely more than the Earth and the whole solar system combined. While we are to respect the Earth, it is a home FOR US. It provides resources FOR US. It would have no purpose without human beings.

For the theologically minded: the co-creation of a soul that will live for eternity is the most noble and important thing that human beings participate in. How dignified we are as humans, that our God would allow us to take part in his Act of Creation? How sinful would it be to worship the god of Mother Earth? He has lowered himself to make us responsible for the carrying out of his plan of salvation on earth by co-creating persons to love Him forever.

I am deeply sorry for this group. For when they give their lives to Earth they get nothing in return. And when they serve only idols, silence is the answer.

Sunday, November 13, 2005

What DOESN'T Medicare cover?

So not only do my tax dollars in Canada go towards funding abortions, but now I have to pay for this. There is no end to the madness.

Friday, November 04, 2005

Interesting Abortion Statistics

These charts show the percentage of pregnancies ending in abortion, state by state. They've divided it up between state of occurrence and state of residence (of the mother, I'm presuming). All in all, it looks like abortion is declining everywhere but in the big cities (namely, LA and New York). Look especially at the county breakdown at the bottom of the page. The state of residence maps seem more helpful to me, because I like to see whether certain States' laws form the minds of pregnant women wanting abortions. But I can see how the state of occurrence maps can also be helpful to see where people are going for their abortions.

Thursday, November 03, 2005

Putting the Smack Down

We had a visitor to campus this week from the Vatican. Archbishop Michael Miller, secretary of the Vatican Congregation for Catholic Education, spoke to students and administrators at Notre Dame on Monday about the possible courses of action regarding Catholic institutions that have lost or compromised their Catholic identity.

Of particular interest to me was this comment: "The 'wait and see' approach generously relied on the goodwill of Catholic educators, but it has only allowed disunity and dissent in the Church to go unchallenged, with disastrous consequences for Catholic students and their families." Miller predicts that the Holy Father would rather have these universities stripped of their Catholic title than allow them to continue in creating scandal. It remains to be seen what happens, and I don't think that Miller was really saying anything about Notre Dame having a serious problem, but it's something to think about. With all the new, orthodox Catholic universities popping up everywhere, I think I might fall on the side of just letting the dissenting institutions go. Good riddance to bad rubbish. (Yes, I'm talking to you, Boston and Georgetown.)

For an interesting conversation about Catholic law schools, go to Mirror of Justice.

Tuesday, November 01, 2005

Happy All Saints Day

Today is the Feast of All Saints, a Holy Day of Obligation in the United States. Is it still a Holy Day of Obligation for Canadian citizens? (I always wondered about this, whether there are jurisdictional rules for Holy Days of Obligation....) Nevermind...I'm going to Mass anyway! :)

Here's a great reflection from St. Bernard on the Feast. Hat tip: Amy Welborn.

As I found out from talking about Halloween in the previous post, the Feast of All Saints was instituted by Gregory IV sometime between 827 and 844. Of course, they were talking about a day for all the Holy Ones back in the 600's, but nothing official for the whole Church till the 800's. Still - this means that it's a VERY old Feast. For more info on the relationship between All Saints Day and Halloween, go here, and here.