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Showing posts from August, 2010

Catholics and Muslims

The flap over the mosque near ground zero in New York has set me to thinking about several things in regard to our understanding of the Muslim religion. I am not writing this blog entry to take a stand on that issue, but I do think that several things need to be pointed out.

I certainly appreciate the sensitivity to victims of 9/11, but sensitivity notwithstanding we sometimes need to point to facts rather than emotions. And one fact is that the Muslim religion did not take down the World Trade Center towers. Islamic extremists who distort Islam performed that terrible deed. Another fact is that the US Constitution makes it impossible to ban the construction of a house of worship on private property. All this having been said I do hope that the Immam and some of his followers could sit down with political leaders from New York and come to some common agreement. Right now it seems that they're talking through the airwaves but not directly to each other.

I also believe th…

A Midsummer Feast

This coming Sunday the Church will take a break from ordinary time and celebrate the Feast of the Assumption of Mary. It was on the feast in 1963 that I received the Franciscan habit. A year and a day later on August 16, 1964 I professed my first vows as a Franciscan. I was 18 for the first event, 19 for the second. Much has changed in the world, the nation and the Church during that time and needless to say much has changed in my own life. An understanding of this great feast of Mary perhaps can shed some light on those changes.

For some it might be tempting to dismiss this feast as something tough to explain in light of modern science and our present understanding of the universe, but I think that a deeper look at the true meaning of the feast shows its timeliness, even though the theology around it may need to be reworked.

With the Church's teaching that Mary is assumed body and soul into heaven a statement is made that our salvation and redemption is not just spiritu…