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Saturday, August 16

THE SHAPE OF THE FUTURE?


ACME News Service
19 August 2042
Baton Rouge

TRADITIONAL EPISCOPALIANS THREATEN SCHISM

Protesting against what it called the "extreme and ill-advised" actions of the recently adjourned Episcopal Church General Convention in approving a new Orgy Liturgy, culminating in the sacrifice and dismemberment of a human being and the drinking of his or her blood, the traditionalist Association of Irritated Episcopalians (AIE) today threatened to leave that church's communion.

"We've had enough," said spokesperson the Rev. Mirabelle Kweezi- Parfait. "There may be good, biblical arguments, such as the relationship between Abraham and his ass, to accept and bless loving partnerships between humans and animals, but this goes too far." Rev. Kweezi-Parfait went on to say that no orthodox Christian could accept the new liturgy because of the Judeo-Christian tradition, strongly emphasized among Episcopalians, that cleanliness is next to godliness. "There is no possible guarantee that these rites would be celebrated under sanitary conditions," she said. The danger of infection from a number of sources is simply too great. This cannot be of Gawd."

The Rev. Dr. Tiffany-Britney Smith-Smith, Griswold Professor of Theology and Sacred Scripture at the General Theological Seminary in New York (the blessing of whose marriage to her own sister, and subsequent divorce to marry a goat named Cosmo, caused such a stir in the late twenties), disagreed. "Modern scholarship, which takes into account all the pertinent paleographical and archaeological evidence, confirms that liturgical orgies and human sacrifice were practiced from the earliest times. Naturally, the early Christians would not have wished to make this public for fear of offending Roman sensibilities, but clear records remain indicating these practices were nevertheless well known. Thousands of bones have been found in and around ancient Christian churches-just what are we to conclude from that?" Professor Smith-Smith told reporters that after Constantine the practice died out as the Christian Church became more acculturated, and the gospels and other records were altered to make it appear that the first Christian Passover was celebrated with bread and wine rather than the body and blood of Judas, whose killing for this purpose was converted by redactors into the well-known story of his treason and suicide. "The evidence is overwhelming. Literally thousands of studies have been made of the issue. The whole weight of current scholarship is behind this understanding," the Professor said, indicating that no reputable scholar today even questions it. "As for infections," she remarked, "haven't these AIE people ever heard about antibiotics? I am afraid they care more for their sensibilities than for truth."

Dr. Kweezi-Parfait, when asked about the numerical strength of the Irritated Episcopalians, and consequent threat of their withdrawal to the health of the denomination, cited last year's conference in Fort Worth as an example of their vigor. "There were people there from all over the United States, and the age range was remarkable," she said. "They came from as far away as Iowa, and some were as young as seventy!" When asked how many actually attended the conference, she simply replied, "Lots, given the hot weather."

The Rt. Rev. Orson Trollope IV, a retired bishop associated with the AIE, along with perhaps three other bishops, are promising the formation of "an independent jurisdiction, not in communion with the Episcopal Church." "If it's all right with all parties concerned, we will take our properties and pensions and leave," he said when contacted Monday at his Florida estate. "We will be seeking alternative episcopal oversight from third world bishops. The Rt. Rev. Mabel Mumbo, Bishop of Eastern Tanzania, has already consented to serve us in that capacity."

Bishop Mumbo, known as an arch-conservative who opposes conjugal relations between humans and animals as repugnant to Africans, has not been available for comment. When asked about the rumor that she had been "brought over" by the promise of as many chicken dinners as she can eat, Bishop Trollope replied that this was "a vicious slur upon a great lady, spread by our enemies for the sole purpose of discrediting her."

"The average Episcopalian in the pew is on our side. He/she has had enough of this," said the Rev. Kweezi-Parfait. When asked about studies indicating that the average Episcopalian has conservative sensibilities but doesn't give a tinker's damn about doctrine, and doesn't care what the rest of the church is doing as long as it doesn't effect his or her own parish life, she responded, "What those studies don't show is the tremendous resilience and hope of these people-hope that it will all go away, hope that they will not have to do things that make them look like fundamentalists, and hope that about half the stuff in New Testament isn't true."

"There is no doubt about it," she said, "faith and hope are, and have always been, our best qualities. They help us forget about everything else."


9:28 AM


Friday, August 15

MR. DREHER OBJECTS:

Of interest to those of you who follow the life of American conservatism, and the work of this magazine: Rod Dreher's "Paleocon Crackup" from National Review's blogsite. Rod, a contributing editor of Touchstone, is responding to an attack on him, included in an attack on us, in the July/August issue of Culture Wars, in an article titled "The Black Operation Known as 'Conservatism'."

The Catholic apologist Mark Shea adds his own thoughts, in a blog titled "I've always been a bit leery of Jones and Fidelity". You may want to read through the long list of responses, in which Rod has to explain himself several times. In his first response, which will give you an idea of the nature of the exchange, he says:

Al, I just love this self-justifying paleocon idea that neocons - which is to say, mainstream conservatives - conspire to "purge" paleos. If you're saying that we don't want to be associated with right-wingers who carry on about Jewish conspiracies, fine, I plead guilty to wanting to push such people out of polite company.

I have no problem at all with conservatives who are against unlimited immigration (as am I), critical of the unrestricted free market (I'm sympathetic to this view), and isolationist in their foreign policy views (I disagree, but fair-minded folks can). But too many paleocons get hung up on the Jews, and racialism, and allow their prejudice to color their moral and political judgment. I want no truck with such people.


8:47 AM


Thursday, August 14

PREMATURE ONENESS:

An insightful response to Jim Kushiner's blog on the Episcopal Church's presiding bishop, posted yesterday, from a lawyer in Texas:

"Out beyond ideas of wrong doing and right doing there is a field. I'll meet you there," said the Sufi poet Rumi. The field is the field of the divine compassion where all things are reconciled in ways that we can only dimly comprehend.

This is a fine example of something one can see throughout the contemporary Loosey-Goosey thought patterns. I call it the claim of "premature Oneness," or "unearned Unity." Along with many others I find Rumi's devotional writings very moving. My conception of 'this field' is that condition referred to e.g. in I Jno 5:18, its glimpse of the inner restoration of all things, a vision occasionally given to Christians and non-Christians alike. Wrong-doing is no longer interesting or even really possible.

But there is a difference between the map that tells me how to get to a destination or level of experience (thanks for the Bible and traditional ascetics) and the ecstatic description of the destination. This description is not an excuse to embrace antinomianism and become a law unto oneself ('do as thou wilt'), as though the pretence we have reached the destination will take us there.

This is a cheap misconception, that we can go cherry-pick from other traditions to ease us in escaping from our own. Basically Gnostic, as is the disconnect between seeking spiritual consolation and our physical and moral behavior. I notice the borrowers do not emphasize the part of Rumi that is described as "a reasoned and measured attempt to explain the various dimensions of spiritual life and practice to disciples intent upon following the Way."

Shameless vandals of every tradition they can get their hands on, turning sacred things to the justification of appetite.


It was signed "obviously annoyed." Writings like Griswold's tend to have that effect on thinking people. I know that sounded rude or catty, but it is also true.

There is something in the fog and haze of Griswoldian rhetoric that annoys the person who wants to think clearly. We feel as an art critic or a painter would if forced to look at paintings through some sort of screen that dulled the colors and blurred the lines. It's annoying to have someone obscuring the view.

Actually that simile implies that we want to listen to Griswold in the way a painter wants to look at paintings, and we don't, but I can't think of a more exact one. It is the annoying frustration of willfully obscured sight I'm trying to bring out.


11:03 AM


FANTASY IMAGES:

Another article by Geoffrey Kirk you may find interesting and of use, in addition to the one recommended in the next blog: "A Hidden Tradition?: Geoffrey Kirk unravels a feminist fantasy". Here he examines in detail the claims, presented by many (including the venerable Prof. Thomas Torrance) as if they were uncontested fact, that pictures in ancient catacombs and the like proved that the earliest Church had women priests.

And I came across a third useful article of Fr. Kirk's, while looking for references to the creative theory about "Junia" of Prof. Richard Bauckham of St. Andrew's University in Scotland: "Absolutely Fabulous: Geoffrey Kirk looks at some very implausible assertions". I remember the praises Dr. Bauckham's theory received when he first raised it in public, though as Fr. Kirk points out, it suffers from a complete of evidence.

Richard Bauckham (Professor, it appears, of New Testament Studies at the University of St Andrews) has apparently ´discovered' more about ´Junia' than we know about almost any other New Testament figure apart from Jesus and Paul. On no evidence at all, Bauckham claims that ´Junia' is the Joanna of Luke 24.10. And that she in her turn was Joanna wife of Chusa, steward to Herod Antipas (Luke 8.3). He goes on to speculate that Joanna changed her name to Junia, and Chusa to Andronicus, that Chusa converted to Christianity and was, with his wife, one of the ´apostles' of the Roman Church!

He is not being unfair to Prof. Bauckham. In my youth, when as a new Christian I thought the sex of the priest or pastor a matter of indifference, I was still astonished at how bad the arguments were for the innovation and how quickly intelligent people bought them anyway. I don't think I remember any argument quite so pathetic as Prof. Bauckham's, but in my search of the internet I found lots of sites treating it as a real discovery and clinching argument for the ordination of women.

Bishop Michael Nazir-Ali, an Evangelical and head of the Church of England's working party on women bishops, even appealed to it in a speech to the General Synod of the Church of England, though all he said of it was

Apart from women leaders in the house churches, Professor Richard Bauckham makes a case for a woman apostle in the reference to Junia in Rom 16:7.

Well, yes, Bauckham "makes a case," but the phrase so used implies that he made a good and plausible case, but leaves the speaker a way to retreat should anyone point out that he didn't.


10:34 AM


ASK THE FATHERS:

A useful short article on the Fathers and the ordination of women by Fr. Geoffrey Kirk: "May the Fathers Forgive Them", from the July issue of the English Anglican magazine New Directions.

Fr. Kirk, an Anglo-Catholic parish priest and one of the leaders of Forward in Faith, the group that pubishes New Directions, argues against the now standard idea that the sex of Christ was "christologically insignificant" and that the idea of the priest as an icon of Christ is an invention invented to justify a practice. Many people hold these positions, and not just recognizable liberals. Perhaps their most distinguished advocate is the Scottish Presbyterian Thomas Torrance (whom Kirk quotes).

I recommend the article for a short but sufficient treatment of the matter.

About ten years ago, we published an article on women's ordination by Dr. Torrance and a reply by Fr. Patrick Reardon. Pat's was a devastating reply, because so much of Torrance's argument depended on claims that were not true, particularly alleged archaeological evidence for priestesses in the early Church. We plan to these and many other articles available on the website, as time and funds allow.


10:20 AM


Wednesday, August 13

TOLKIEN LINK:

For Tolkien fans, a site with some useful links: The Catholic Imagination of J. R. R. Tolkien. It includes links to the articles from our January/February 2002 issue to be found online, and also an interview with Thomas Howard.

It appeared in the magazine Traces, published by the Catholic group Communion and Liberation. To give you a sample, the interviewers say:

More than the communication of a hidden message, the main value of the book seems to be that of being a great allegory of life. As C. S. Lewis said, "no other world is so obviously objective" as that created by Tolkien: men are men in a truer way, friends more friends than we often experience in daily life. In sum: reality in transparence. How is it possible that a fantasy-world brings us close to the nature of things?

And he replies:

Again, the word allegory would make Tolkien unhappy. Analogy would please him more. Characters and places and objects in his saga are not symbols, or allegories, of anything at all. They are what they are, for a start. But it may also be said that they are "cases in point" of this or that, which we recognize from our Primary World over here. Again, Gollum is not a symbol of a soul swiftly en route to final damnation: he is a case in point, recognizable from our world, of what evil in fact does to a creature.

The only difference between the two worlds is that, in Middle Earth, we get to see the difference, whereas in our story one may "smile and smile, and be a villain" (
Othello). The sense in which such a "fantasy" world, paradoxically, brings us closer to the real nature of things in our own world (whereas to a superficial observer such fantasy might seem the most unabashed escapism) is that this sort of narrative gives us distance and perspective. It takes us by surprise.

Our guard is down. I once asked Lewis why the Passion of Aslan (cf.
The Marnian Chronicles) moved me more than the Crucifixion story, when I knew perfectly well that Aslan is "only" a fantasy. Lewis replied that when I read the Gospel, all my "religious" expectations are up and quivering ("I ought to feel a certain response, namely gratitude and perhaps grief"), whereas I am taken unawares by the Passion of Aslan, and hence may find myself overwhelmed.

Likewise, we find, to our surprise, that the very rocks, water, forests, and hamlets of Middle Earth quicken our capacity to "see" rocks, water, and so forth, in our own world. How many of us have said, in the course of a mountain walk, "Whyčthis is almost good enough to be Middle Earth!"


An article by Dr. Howard will be appearing in the View section of the October issue, by the way. In it, e examines the common human interest in famous people and asks what that interest says about our souls. He has also written for us a longer essay giving a sort of summary of his view of Charles Williams, on whom he wrote his doctoral dissertation and one book.


4:07 PM


OUT BEYOND IN THE WILDERNESS OF SIN

I read this from the text of Presiding Bishop The Most Rev. Frank T. Griswold's sermon given at the 74th General Convention of the Episcopal Church
Friday, August 8, 2003:


"Out beyond ideas of wrong doing and right doing there is a field. I'll meet you there," said the Sufi poet Rumi. The field is the field of the divine compassion where all things are reconciled in ways that we can only dimly comprehend.

"Everyone who calls on the name of the Lord shall be saved," Paul tells us in today's first reading. What does it mean to be saved, but to be drawn out of our little worlds of self-preoccupation and placed in the open space of God's transfiguring and all transforming love? And how does this happen? It happens because life accosts us; circumstances force themselves upon us and we are obliged to leave the security of our various Egypts, our states of certitude that are often forms of bondage- and launch out into the wilderness with no clear sense of destination. All we know is that we are being led by a pillar of fire by night and a pillar of cloud by day. And yet, in the wilderness, manna appears, a gift is given, love descends - supplying hope and giving courage, as well as the strength to journey on.


Launch into the wilderness "with no clear sense of destination"? States of certitude that are "often forms of bondage"?

Since the bishop is referring to the story of the Exodus, he should be aware that Moses did have a clear destination--Canaan, and that at one point the Lord God showed the people where they were going and told them go and take possession of it. Of course, save Joshua and Caleb, they lacked the requisite state of certitude about the Lord's direction to take the land. It is only after refusing the Lord's clear direction and failing to embrace and maintain certitude about his Word that the Israelites then wandered with no clear destination for 40 years in the Wilderness of Sin.

Clearly "out beyond ideas of right doing and wrong doing" the Episcopal Church now has a "gay" bishop. Think about it: a diocese has elected, and the national church has approved, a man to be bishop and an example to the flock who has regular sexual relations with a person not his wife. He has repudiated the sacrament of marriage and the tradition of the church openly and is applauded as a new example for this church. St. Paul wrote that the things written in the Old Testament are for our instruction. One of those things is the clear condemnation of homosexual behavior; the New Testament concurs. But some people just never learn; makes one wonder what the Episcopapl Church will be doing for the next forty years.


3:35 PM


Tuesday, August 12

LECTIONARY NEWS:

In response to "Headline New" (below), Michelle Hagerman writes:

This reminds me of something Kathleen Norris wrote in one of her books (either Dakota: A Spiritual Biography, The Cloister Walk, or Amazing Grace: A Vocabulary of Faith). while reflecting on one of her long-term Benedictine monastery visits, she commented that by reading the biblical prophets, one kept up with the news (she heard the prophets read daily during the monastic hours services). She was especially referring to the prophecies concerning chaos in the cities . . . .


1:23 PM


HEADLINE NEWS:

One of the best features of the Wall Street Journal's daily OpinionJournal, a survey of the day's news from the web, is its "Metaphor Alert." The writers offer hopelessly over-done and/or mixed metaphors taken from articles in major newspapers and magazines.

Here is the Alert from the August 6th edition, in case you like this sort of thing:

Metaphor Alert http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/articles/A21388-2003Aug5.html

From an online column by the Washington Post's Terry Neal (italics ours):

*** QUOTE ***

The energy in the Democratic Party at the moment is on the left. . . . Thus only one Democrat right now, former Vermont governor Howard Dean, seems to have any momentum. He has surged to the front of the pack by giving the party activists what they want--red meat attacks on an administration they despise.

Dean has appeared as a welcome breath of fresh air in contrast to the feckless, wimpy Washington Democrats--at least that's the way some of the activists perceive them. . . . While Dean has generated an avalanche of media coverage by surging into the first tier of candidates, the race is still wide open, and there's plenty of time left for any number of candidates to either emerge or fall off the map.


Another of its best features is its list of funny headlines. Most of the headlines the writers list are dopey statements of the obvious, though sometimes they simply find an amusing meaning in the headline if read other than as intended. Here is some from the list in August 6th edition, again in case any of you like this sort of thing.

What Was the First Clue?
http://gomemphis.com/mca/america_at_war/article/0,1426,MCA_945_2161458,00.html

"Terrorists Suspected in Indonesia Blast"--headline, Memphis Commercial Appeal, Aug. 6

What Would We Do Without Some?
http://www.boston.com/dailyglobe2/218/nation/Some_see_link_to_group_accused_in_Bali_bombings+.shtml

"Some See Link to Group Accused in Bali Bombings"--headline, Boston Globe, Aug. 6

What Would We Do Without Antiterrorism Experts?
http://www.nytimes.com/2003/08/05/international/asia/05CND-TERR.html

"Antiterrorism Experts Warn More Attacks May Be Coming"--headline, New York Times, Aug. 5

It's the Eponymy, Stupid
http://www.news.com.au/common/story_page/0,4057,6874085%255E1702,00.html

"More Attacks, Warns Downer"--headline, News.com.au, Aug. 6

Terrorist Tots?
http://www.nynewsday.com/news/local/manhattan/nyc-hswtc06q3404130aug06,0,5356758.story

"Smaller Babies Tied to Sept. 11"--headline, (Long Island) Newsday, Aug. 6

That Must've Hurt
http://sports.boston.com/sports/football/articles/2003/08/05/chiefs_tackle_jones_out_of_hospital

"Chiefs Tackle Jones out of Hospital"--headline, Associated Press, Aug. 6

Generalissimo Francisco Franco Is Still Dead
http://reuters.com/newsArticle.jhtml?type=topNews&storyID=3229688

"Americans Continue to Apply for Mortgages"--headline, Reuters, Aug. 6

Stop the Presses
http://pennlive.com/newsflash/pa/index.ssf?/base/news-5/106011419656460.xml

"If Warhol Were Alive at 75, He'd Likely Be on the Internet"--headline, Associated Press, Aug. 5


One reason newspapers run such headlines is that they have to produce copy, vast amounts of copy, and this means reaching for stories that really are not stories. The list reminded me why we don't read the newspaper very often.

The last time my wife and I bought a Sunday newspaper, we sat down expecting to have a nice hour or two reading up on the world. About thirty minutes later we put it down, both having finished the paper and realized how much news there is that we have no need to know, and feeling guilty that we'd spent thirty minutes and one dollar on the thing. If you don't read the stories you don't need to read, you can finish a fat Sunday newspaper in a few minutes. Or not buy it at all.

I know a democracy needs an informed citizenry, etc. (etc. etc. etc.), and most people assume that this means a democracy needs people who know all the news. An informed citizenry is one that has lots of information about political matters.

The media naturally believe this, because their livelihoods depend upon people believing it and buying their newspapers and watching their television shows. Being realists, and greedy unprincipled realists, they present the news as if it were entertainment, and increasingly blur the lines between the two.

But it isn't true, this idea that a democracy needs people who are always up to minute on political affairs. At least it isn't true without great qualification. People do need to know the basic facts if they are going to make wise decisions when they vote, lobby their representatives to do the right thing, and give money to the right causes. They need to know how Senator Shakedown votes and what People Who Know Better Than You believe.

Finding all this out doesn't actually take very long. To take any more time in reading up on the news is a waste of time, except for the very few people involved in political action. It may be a leisure activity, like watching football games or sitcoms, but it is not fulfilling a duty or in any way meritorious.

An informed citizenry really needs to be informed about the world as it really is, as it is under and behind the distracting affairs of political life: it needs to know about the moral order; about human nature; about their heritage, social, institutional, and philosophical; about the great men of the past; about the great questions of life, not least the end of man; about the ways in which great men think about the world; about God's will and the ways fallen man thwarts it and how God uses even man's rebellion to work all things for good.

The information the citizens need is mostly information about these things. Without this kind of knowledge, the most detailed knowledge of the progress of some particular bill helps them not at all, because they will not know what to think about it.

An informed citizenry will learn more of what it needs to know from reading Dante and Samuel Johnson, Richard Baxter and Pope John Paul II, the Gospel of John and Camus' The Plague, than from reading the newspaper. What Dante learned about sin in The Inferno is more useful information than what Senator Shakedown told his party's convention, even if the senator is a better man than senators tend to be.


9:45 AM


THE GAYING OF THE CHURCH:

Others have taken up the thesis of my book, The Church Impotent, that the Christians churches in their modern, Western form are no place for a heterosexual man.

Mark Oppenheimer of Yale thinks this is just fine, although in the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette he still finds the new gay-feminist church a bit startling:

Over the Fourth of July weekend, my friend Katie got married outside Portland, Ore. The officiant was a gay Episcopal priest, performing his first marriage. He had an earring in each ear and a rainbow-colored stole about his neck.

But then comes the best part:

He sang several bars of Valjean and Eponine's tear-jerking finale from "Les Miserables"

Oppenheimer admits

It was the gayest church moment I had seen.

In addition to the gay men, there are the women ministers:

In the mainline Protestant churches, and in Reform and Conservative Judaism, the female percentage of the clergy increases every year. At the University of Chicago, 43 percent of divinity students are women; at Harvard Div, 57 percent are.

Someone recently predicted that the clergy, like nursing, will become a female profession., and males in it will be assumed to be homosexual.

Oppenheimer doesn't think that a clergy composed of women and homosexuals will change the church much, because it has long been feminized:

Men have always gone to church much less than women have, and it seems unlikely that women and gays will pull them in when preachers who looked like them couldn't.

Oppenheimer ignores the question of what will happen to the men who will keep a greater and greater distance from the churches that look like women's clubs with a gay auxiliary. Will men join fundamentalist churches, or Islam (the preferred solution of American blacks), or some neo-fascist, Fight Club spiritual-renewal-through-violence movement? or just drift into a sensate fast cars, sports, and beer existence?


5:50 AM


Monday, August 11

MORE ON DAY CARE:

An academic friend wrote responding to Saturday's blog "Day Care Daze":

Excellent post on Day Care - the issue that separates the true conservatives from the pretenders. Nothing so works up my wife's blood pressure as does this issue; I will try to be more polite, but here are a couple of random thoughts I've got about it. They're not original to me, and probably most people are aware of the truth of most of them, but they won't get said:

1. You cannot have a culture without communities; you cannot have a community without neighborhoods; you cannot have a neighborhood if no one is home.

2. If no one is home, children will be less likely to be allowed to play outside, and those who do play outside will be at greater risk.

3. Day care and school as we now know it go hand in glove. Essentially, school is nothing but a warehouse for children, who are mildly entertaining but quite inconvenient. After school programs, eroding more and more of any real life a child may have, are logical extensions of day care.

4. Not one single adult reminisces about either day care or about after school programs - not even those young enough to have experienced them. Not one adult who puts his children in day care would have wanted that for himself when he was a child.

5. People these days limit their families SO THAT they can enjoy a double income. The truth is so striking yet so obvious: they NEVER seize upon a double income so that they can let their families grow larger. They limit their families SO THAT they can enjoy a double income - forgive the repetition.

6. Yet much of that doubled income is illusory, and the people know it. That rankles them. It is not only that day care costs a lot; it's also that the whole way of life is awkward and unnatural, and THAT costs a lot, even in material goods. For instance: the second income, if it is attached to a career, is a drag on the first. It's an obvious point, but no one will breathe a word about it. The father need not push himself harder to make his promotion. The father need not look for a better paying job. If he would like to do either, it may not be feasible: he may lack the time, or he may be tied down geographically.

So you do not gain the second income: you gain the second income minus what you lose in opportunity to increase the first. Also, the second income will most of the time be taxed at a higher rate, because it will bump the household into the next bracket, and because deductions, which remain fairly constant, would be in place regardless. Then there are the prepared meals, the extra cars, the clothes, the incidental expenses.

7. So then why do people do it? Various reasons, some better than others:

vanity;

the amassing of huge college bills - a self-perpetuating scam, college is;

loneliness (nobody else is at home);

laziness (much work outside the home is a lot easier, certainly for women it is physically a lot less demanding, than work in the home);

a real career vocation, but a failure to see how deeply such a vocation would conflict with being a mother;

a desire never to be indebted to a man, not even if he is your husband; and

mindless following of the multitude;

8. If more women stayed home, more women would stay home; I am absolutely convinced that many women need to get out of the house just to talk to people. This of course is wholly absurd: not so long ago, the people to talk to, other women, were all about.

9. Boys suffer more in day care than do girls. They suffer more from the deprivation of their mothers than do girls; their linguistic and emotional development suffers especially.

10. No one asks the dread question, "What is this life of ours for, anyway?" Even Christians will not ask it. The only answer is, "That I may do the will of the Lord." I have never heard anyone so brazen as to insist that day care is the will of the Lord. I suppose it will come.

11. Italian for day care center: "asilo," asylum. Enough said.

12. Churches now run day care centers. I think it might be a good rule of thumb - unless the center is for the destitute - to leave any parish that runs a day care center.


I think this is exactly right.


9:27 AM


THE MINNEAPOLIS CREED:

Here is the "Minneapolis Creed," composed by the Rev'd Eric Zolner in response to the Episcopal Church's just finished General Convention. Fr. Zolner describes himself as "a third generation Episcopalian, at age 30 is the youngest Episcopal priest in the diocese of Colorado. He is the Associate Rector of Youth and Young Adults at Grace Episcopal Church in Colorado Springs, Colorado." I was pleased to see that the parish includes Touchstone on its "valuable links" site.

It is brilliant. I pass it on to you with the author's permission.

The Minneapolis Creed

We believe in Justice Mother,
the all inclusive Maker of good self esteem.

And in Jesus,
The only name we recognize from the Bible
He was conceived in an alternative committed relationship
And became person.
He was crucified, died, and was buried.
On the third day his ideals were raised in the minds of his friends.
He "Ascended" into "Heaven" and sits there with the heavenly Parent
But since there is no judgment, he shan't be back.

We believe in the Holy Spirit, Sophia.
She serves as a great rationale for whatever we want to do.
With the Parent and the Child she is used for furthering our agenda.

We believe in one church, as long as it agrees with us,
One baptism for the extinction of sins.
We look for the conversion of those less enlightened,
And a life of full inclusion of all who agree with us

Amen.


9:24 AM


Sunday, August 10

MORE ON MONKS:

Received in an e-mail announcement: the website of the journal Analecta Cartusiana. The announcement described the journal as "the longest continuing series on the
Carthusian Order," founded in 1970, which

have now published more than 290 volumes on all research areas on the Carthusian Order. Soon to appear on this site, a complete history of the Analecta Cartusiana given by Dr. Dennis M. Martin and completed by a detailed account of the series by Dr. Patrick McGuire.


12:15 PM




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