I’m surprised it took two days for this stuff to hit the papers:

Students and faculty returned to campus after winter break to find that Boston College had quietly completed, without announcement or fanfare, an eight-year project to dramatically increase the presence of Roman Catholic religious symbols on campus. The additions are subtle but significant, as the university joins other Catholic institutions around the nation in visibly reclaiming its Catholic identity.

“The Christian art reflects our pride in and commitment to our religious heritage,” said Jack Dunn, BC’s spokesman.

Student reaction has been generally supportive, but among faculty, there is division over the appropriateness of the step. A meeting last month of arts and sciences department chairs turned into a heated argument over the classroom icons; a handful of faculty have written to the administration to protest, and some unsuccessfully circulated a petition asking to have crucifixes removed.

“I believe that the display of religious signs and symbols, such as the crucifix, in the classroom is contrary to the letter and spirt of open intellectual discourse that makes education worthwhile and distinguishes first-rate universities from mediocre and provincial ones,” Maxim D. Shrayer, chairman of the department of Slavic and Eastern languages and literatures, said in an interview.

Much to my surprise this Globe story was pretty balanced.

Inside higher ed give the anger a little more vent:

“A classroom is a place where I am supposed, as a teacher, to teach without any bias, to teach the truth. And when you put an icon or an emblem or a flag, it confuses the matter,” said Amir Hoveyda, the chemistry department chair.

“For 18 years, I taught at a university where I was allowed to teach in an environment where I felt comfortable. And all the sudden, without any discussion, without any warning, without any intellectual debate, literally during the middle of the night during a break, these icons appear,” Hoveyda said.

God knows how you can teach chemistry with a crucifix on the wall. I don’t know how Catholic high school teachers manage it.

Update:
Michael Graham has fun with it:

“In the name of tolerance, TEAR DOWN THIS CROSS!”

…if the pope didn’t remove the excommunication on the St. Pius X society:

The rehabilitated bishop at the heart of a Vatican uproar for denying the Holocaust has been dismissed as the head of an Argentine seminary. The seminary announced the dismissal on Sunday in a statement that said the bishop, Richard Williamson was no longer the director of the La Reja seminary on the outskirts of the Argentina capital.

The light that the church put these guys on the spot and it made a difference. There are a lot of people who would rather see a different church and a different pope, one idiot has even suggested Obama but the church is the church is the church. If people don’t like it there are plenty of alternatives.

Was going to wait on this since today I was going to write on the existence of Christ but this link at Hot Air annoyed me. It is one of my pet peeves The idea that indulgences are “returning” is nonsense, they never left.

Like the Latin Mass and meatless Fridays, the indulgence was one of the traditions decoupled from mainstream Catholic practice in the 1960s by the Second Vatican Council, the gathering of bishops that set a new tone of simplicity and informality for the church. Its revival has been viewed as part of a conservative resurgence that has brought some quiet changes and some highly controversial ones,

There is a method to all of this, to encourage the sacrament of confession:

Getting Catholics back into confession, in fact, was one of the motivations for reintroducing the indulgence. In a 2001 speech, Pope John Paul described the newly reborn tradition as “a happy incentive” for confession.

“Confessions have been down for years and the church is very worried about it,” said the Rev. Tom Reese, a Jesuit and former editor of the Catholic magazine America. In a secularized culture of pop psychology and self-help, he said, “the church wants the idea of personal sin back in the equation. Indulgences are a way of reminding people of the importance of penance.”

“The good news is we’re not selling them anymore,” he added.

To remain in good standing, Catholics are required to confess their sins at least once a year. But in a survey last year by a research group at Georgetown University, three-quarters of Catholics said they went to confession less often or not at all.

Under the rules in the “Manual of Indulgences,” published by the Vatican, confession is a prerequisite for getting an indulgence.

The mocking of the church in comments let to the following rant that I repeat here… I will go in to more detail when the time comes later in my writing on Christianity. Continue reading “Promoted from Hotair Jumping ahead”

A lot of the noise about the Williamson case is smoke and grandstanding these days Williamson’s statements on what the Vatican has ordered are not so odd:

Williamson does not plan to immediately comply with the Vatican’s demand that he recant, and has rejected a suggestion that he might visit the former Auschwitz death camp, the German weekly Der Spiegel reported Saturday.

Williamson said he would correct himself if he is satisfied by the evidence, but insisted that examining it “will take time,” Der Spiegel reported.

…but the last line of this associated press story just make me smile and laugh:

Several efforts by The Associated Press to reach Williamson at his home in La Reja, Argentina, have been unsuccessful.

Argentina, ARGENTINA? Boy you don’t get a better fit than that do you?

I was answering a comment in the Ben Stein thread it hit me that the answer was the post I’ve been meaning to write on the subject so I’ve promoted and expaned it.

It is rightly said that if one is not willing to have your religious belief challenged then it must not be worth much. If you can’t defend your faith it is unlikely to be worth defending

I think that is true for science as well. In fact science progresses by the process of idea, observation, experiment, deduction, and reassessment repeated over and over again.

This process has three results:

Affirmation of some existing conclusions
Rethinking of some existing conclusions
Totally new directions that we’ve never thought of

All these things have one core component; the pursuit of truth. As truth is the reason to be Christian the pursuit of scientific truth must be embraced. Continue reading “Chapter 2: My take on Science vs religion”

I must confess I’m getting kinda antsy being home. December had Christmas and the ice storm to keep me busy. January had the open house and the College search. Now Feburary is here. The boy has picked has almost finalized his choice. (I think Das Full Boat has it) the house is empty and I find my mind turning toward the lack of success in my job hunt.

It’s a depressing situation, my lot is shared by an awful lot of people these days and its perfectly normal to worry. It is not however healthy or normal to let these worries overwhelm you.

I’m sure there are things I can improve and I’ll be taking those measures as I can but that doesn’t lesson the feelings that come up. That has to still be dealt with in some ways.

If you are Catholic then might I suggest a solution. When this is getting you down offer a small prayer set (Our Father, Hail Mary and Glory Be) and close by offering your feelings as a sacrifice your sins yours and others, and maybe for the souls in Purgatory too.

This turns the source of weakness into a source of spiritual strength and sticks it to the other side that wants you discouraged and depressed and inactive.

Even if you are weak in faith or not Catholic it certainly can’t hurt. If we have to deal with bad times lets use them to humanity’s advantage.

There is shock and horror over the story of a woman who went in for an abortion, went into labor early delivered a live child and then, well lets quote the story:

What Williams and the Health Department say happened next has shocked people on both sides of the abortion debate: One of the clinic’s owners, who has no medical license, cut the infant’s umbilical cord. Williams says the woman placed the baby in a plastic biohazard bag and threw it out.

Doesn’t shock me one bit. We have a society that has no respect for life. The humanity of he unborn child is denied and it is treated as property. Large profits are made by the industry that does this and lawmakers even “catholic” lawmakers defend it with their votes.

Why would you expect this not to happen? What I wonder is how much does this stuff happen and people stay quiet?

This is the society that people have voted for and supported. Just remember if you are one of those people the day may come when your life might not be considered to have value, when you are considered a burden to society in general and your family in particular. And when that day comes and you are put away or worse, don’t complain.

And if you are Catholic and you support abortion either actively or passively; find a priest and make a good confession. God will give you the rest of your life to do so.

After that you’re on your own.

Update: Via Jules Crittenden slightly off subject but with the same theme via at Jules Crittenden “The normalization of evil.”

Update 2: The captain quotes the Pres.

His speech is pretty good he is hitting all the right notes. He goes into some details about his own family and lack thereof. He mentions that his father was a Muslim who became an atheist and that his people were not particularly practicing Christians.

He notes Tony Blair and his coming to his (Catholic) faith. He talks about his coming to Christianity briefly it is interesting so I’ll comment on it later in its own post.

He asks for prayers for himself and the country.

A good solid speech that hit the right tone.

One small thing that I’ll mention since it will be beaten into the ground; He says that no religion says to kill the innocent. The question is who is considered the innocent? He might want to re-read his Koran on that one. Of course this speech wasn’t the place for that question but there are going to be those who hit on it hard, so I’m saying it now.

You know when after a Vatican investigation of the head of a major catholic order it is decided to:

invite the father to a reserved life of penitence and prayer, relinquishing any form of public ministry. The Holy Father approved these decisions.

That suggested there was some there there. Well it took a year after the old man’s death but this stuff is finally coming out publicly:

The Legionaries of Christ, an influential Roman Catholic religious order, have been shaken by new revelations that their founder, who died a year ago, had an affair with a woman and fathered a daughter just as he and his thriving conservative order were winning the acclaim of Pope John Paul II.

Before his death, the founder, the Rev. Marcial Maciel Degollado, had been forced to leave public ministry by Pope Benedict XVI because of accusations from more than a dozen men who said he had sexually abused them when they were students.

Lots of commentary, starting with the American Papist who is all over this:

the Legionaries of Christ have some hard decisions to make with regards to how they respond to this crisis concerning the founder. The eyes of the world are on them, and the prayers of the universal Church are with them. It is somewhat encouraging to see that the current head of the LC’s personally saw to it that a thorough investigation took place. Now let’s hope they follow through on their discoveries.

And he has plenty more on the subject: Continue reading “You didn’t think the guy was sanctioned for nothing did you?”

…over a group of 50 US Catholic (and I use that word very loosely here) sending a letter to the pope concerning the lifting of the excommunication of the St. Pius X society bishops.

Obviously there are no IQ tests for congressmen. The first thing you might want to do before signing a letter addressed to the Holy Father is to make sure you are factually correct or perhaps even in the ballpark. I guess I must have missed the announcement that Bishop Williamson was reinstated – what diocese was he assigned? It is also of course true that the majority of these same Catholic Congressman have 100 percent NARAL records. I guess they are also all holocaust deniers. They deny the holocaust of abortion that has killed 50 million children while at the same time voting to support abortion. There have more than a log in their eye when condemning the Pope, I think the Amazon was deforested to provide enough logs for their eyes.

The ignorance or dishonesty of the media is nothing new, just too bad that Catholics join into this.

The reason he won’t be going Kryten is he wasn’t willing to take a Sucker bet, you can’t get outraged over what you expect. If these “Catholics” can’t understand the whole “Abortion is Bad” concept do we expect them to understand Excommunication?

Father Z is all over this stuff. After all he called it.

He recommends a prayer for the pope here. My prayer of choice for the pope is this: At the end of the Rosary pray the end chain backwards (1 glory be, 3 hail marys, 1 Our Father, one Creed) and offer those closing prayers for the Holy Father and his intentions.