Supernature and Nature Are Not Opposites

Friday, January 17, 2014 1:01 AM Comments (28)

Last time we talked about the fact tnat Truth does not contradict Truth and that the same God who creates also redeems. For that reason, Catholics have nothing to fear from the exploration of the physical world. It is also why Catholics should be the last to assume that the God who made an orderly Creation cannot alter or suspend the course of Nature with miracles. He is, after all, God. So I see no reason why denial of the miraculous follows from acknowledgement of the natural order and the sciences, any more than I see why Shakespeare, imposing a metrical form on himself and his characters, might not choose for his own artistic reasons to switch from iambic pentameter to prose when he...READ MORE

Filed under natural revelation

Truth Cannot Contradict Truth

Monday, January 13, 2014 1:01 AM Comments (55)

As I mentioned last time in this space, it’s a strange time to be alive when an explanation of St. Thomas’ argument for the existence of God is attacked—by Catholics—as an assault on the Faith. But that is what I frequently found during the Natural Revelation discussion in November. On the central question—whether God exists and is Creator—I agree with the ID guys and not with atheists. I even made clear that I thought the basic intuition of some kind of design in nature was something that ID guys got right. So you’d think that whatever else may be the case, the argument I was making for God as Creator would, on the whole, be welcomed by the ID guys in my combox even though we disagree on...READ MORE

Filed under natural revelation

Ruminating on the Natural Revelation Argument

Friday, January 10, 2014 1:01 AM Comments (18)

So back in November, I thought I would try my hand at giving a sort of quick and dirty overview of natural revelation: what we can tell about God by looking around at stuff. It wasn’t meant to be a full treatment, of course, but it sketched out a bit of what we are talking about when we say, with Paul in Romans 1:20, that creation points to the Creator.

The series generated the usual controversy one expects, of course. Since its primary point is simply “God exists” the primary audience of interlocutors attracted to such an argument are the people who say “No he doesn’t.” And so various atheists showed up, some to converse, many to blaspheme and do the internet atheist equivalent of...READ MORE

Filed under natural revelation

A Reader is Interested in Apologetics and Defending the Faith

Monday, January 06, 2014 1:01 AM Comments (21)

He writes:

I am currently reading your book By What Authority: An Evangelical Discovers Catholic Tradition. I'm only about four chapters in, but what I've read so far about "modernist" Christians (which today I believe we refer to as progressive Christians) and the Jesus Seminar has really stuck with me.

Before going any further, I want to tell you that I am also a Catholic convert. I come from a Southern Baptist family (although in recent years my father has become Episcopalian and my mother has joined some fringe non-denom church.) Feeling lost and spiritually empty for most of my life, I eventually found my way to Rome. I have never felt the presence of God in my life like I...READ MORE

Filed under mailbag

An American Reader Writes from Austria

Friday, January 03, 2014 1:01 AM Comments (15)

Curious about the take you and your readers might have on this.

I'm in Austria at the moment. Last night, I was chatting with a friend who mentioned she's going to mass in December. After doing a double-take, it turns out she isn't actually a Christmas/Easter Catholic, but rather that she's going to the Vienna Boys' Choir, which regularly performs some of the more famous masses (e.g., Mozart) at the local cathedral.

I'm OK this far in; I heard Tallis' Spem in Alium performed in Seattle's St. James for example (and that's not even technically Catholic music!). Both the music and the venue were meant to evoke the glory of God.

My discomfort settled in when she mentioned...READ MORE

Filed under mailbag

Just a Bit of Merrymaking for Christmas!

Friday, December 27, 2013 1:01 AM Comments (3)

And remember: if you find that too much hollandaise sauce is hurting your teeth over the 12 days, dentists recommend that you have them replaced with chrome-plated dentures because....




wait for it.....





Ah me!  I am so funny!  So, so funny!  Merry Christmas, everyone!

Filed under season's greetings

In Honor of it Being Christmas Eve

Tuesday, December 24, 2013 1:01 AM Comments (4)

I post what was, for nearly the first two decades of my life, the sole (but essential) connection I had to gospel:

Thank you, Charles Schulz, for having the moxie to stand up to the network suits and insist that this scene remain in the show.  For nearly 50 years, it has stood as witness to the actual meaning of Christmas into the midst of the mad and ungodly hubbub of Mammon and tinsel that is Xmas.  It stuck with me through a thoroughly pagan youth and was an essential component of Christmas even when I couldn't tell you why it was so important to me.  If we ever fetch up at the Pearly Gates together, Sparky, I'm gonna shake your hand, say thank you and, if need be, put in a good...READ MORE

Filed under exalted felicitations of the day

For All Your "Hokey Pokey" Humor and/or Evil Conspiracy Needs

Friday, December 20, 2013 1:01 AM Comments (19)

Also, there is this Shakespearean adaptation:

And, of course, what is an innocuous minor cultural phenomenon without a sinister conspiracy lurking behind it?

A spokesman for the leader of the church in Scotland said the song had disturbing origins.
Critics claim that Puritans composed the song in the 18th century in an attempt to mock the actions and language of priests leading the Latin mass. Now politicians have urged police to arrest anyone using the song to “taunt” Catholics under legislation designed to prevent incitement to religious hatred.
Peter Kearney, a spokesman for Cardinal Keith O’Brien, said:
“This song does have quite disturbing origins. Although apparently...READ MORE

Filed under flotsam and jetsam, insensitivity training

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About Mark Shea

Mark Shea
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Mark P. Shea is a popular Catholic writer and speaker. The author of numerous books, his most recent work is The Work of Mercy (Servant) and The Heart of Catholic Prayer (Our Sunday Visitor). Mark contributes numerous articles to many magazines, including his popular column “Connecting the Dots” for the National Catholic Register. Mark is known nationally for his one minute “Words of Encouragement” on Catholic radio. He also maintains the Catholic and Enjoying It blog. He lives in Washington state with his wife, Janet, and their four sons.