Chesterton Would Be Proud

Friday, July 15, 2011 2:00 AM Comments (16)

From the Wall Street Journal, amidst a whole batch of tales of strangeness which cluster around WalMart like bees on honeysuckle, we have this fetching tale of Small Is Beautiful crime and punishment:

... One of the latest outbreaks of Wal-Mart weirdness took place in June in Texas. A 5-foot 2-inch shopper and mother of two named Monique Lawless, who later told a reporter she was “sick of the lawlessness,” chased down three brothers after she spotted them allegedly running out of a store with stolen beer.
Her actions, which included hopping up and down on the hood of a car, led to the arrest of the brothers, named Sylvester Thompson: Sylvester Andre Thompson, Sylvester Durlentren Thompson...READ MORE

Filed under small is beautiful

Gay "Marriage" is About Power, not Love

Wednesday, July 13, 2011 2:00 AM Comments (346)

George Weigel gets it:

According to a New York Times story of June 25, an essential part of the coalition that brought “gay marriage” to the Empire State consisted of Republican financial high-rollers who gave Republican legislators cover for voting in favor of Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s “marriage equality” bill while generously funding the pro–“gay marriage” ground campaign, and who “were inclined to see the issue as one of personal freedom, consistent with their more libertarian views.”

More intellectual and political confusion would be hard to pack into one sentence.

“Gay marriage” in fact represents a vast expansion of state power: In this instance, the state of New York is declaring that...READ MORE

Filed under gay brownshirts on the march

Zac Alstin Notes a Basic Principle

Monday, July 11, 2011 2:00 AM Comments (39)

Namely, he recognizes that when you scratch an atheist, particularly a New Atheist, you will typically find a passionately religious (albeit flatfootedly moralistic and literalistic) Fundamentalist.

I can’t tell you how often I have gotten mail from people who tell me they don’t believe in God and then almost instantly reveal that they are furious with him.  Sometimes they are furious with him for not existing, but much more often they are furious with him for not doing something they badly wanted him to do.

That’s not stuff for mockery by the way.  Because many and many a time the something God was supposed to do was “save my daughter from death by cancer” or “keep my wife from...READ MORE

Filed under atheism

Ross Douthat Blasphemes Moloch

Friday, July 08, 2011 2:19 AM Comments (21)

...by pointing out a screamingly obvious fact in the pages of secular liberalism’s most sacred and holy word, the New York Times:

In 1990, the economist Amartya Sen published an essay in The New York Review of Books with a bombshell title: “More Than 100 Million Women Are Missing.”  His subject was the wildly off-kilter sex ratios in India, China and elsewhere in the developing world. To explain the numbers, Sen invoked the “neglect” of third-world women, citing disparities in health care, nutrition and education. He also noted that under China’s one-child policy, “some evidence exists of female infanticide.”     

The essay did not mention abortion.     

Twenty years later, the...READ MORE

Filed under babies are good and are a gift of god

A Reader Grapples with Concupiscence

Wednesday, July 06, 2011 2:00 AM Comments (7)

So a couple of weeks ago, I wrote a little piece for Crisis which attempted to explain the Church’s teaching on Concupiscence.

In response, a reader writes the following:

Your refresher on concupiscence this morning has inspired me to pass this along to you (as I have my spiritual director and parish priest).  I have been reading St. Augustine’s Confessions over the past weekend and it has stirred some rather unsettling revelations in my own life.  I have a troubling question that has kept my mind restless for the past two days, and I was wondering if I could steal a little of your (understandably precious) time and energy to help me perhaps distil the problem.  I will strive to be as...READ MORE

Filed under mailbag

Good and Evil Humor

Monday, July 04, 2011 2:00 AM Comments (22)

A few days back I wrote a little piece satirizing the truly crazy obsessions of the media with Sarah Palin.  In the course of the piece, I assumed the “voice” of various media types who hate, not just her, but her children—and especially her disabled son, Trig—with the white hot passion of a thousand suns.  I linked to one particularly despicable attack on Trig (whose author denied was fantastically tasteless and whose editors only removed from their site when the outcry from readers became so intense that sponsors began to pull out).

Most people saw the point of the satire but one good man wrote me in fury and told me, with perfectly understandable anger, that I better never meet him in...READ MORE

Filed under thinking out loud

Patriotism and Family

Friday, July 01, 2011 2:00 AM Comments (3)

As you read this, I am up in Edmonton, Alberta at a conference dedicated to Familiaris Consortio.  It is a sort of happy coincidence that as we Yankees are busy celebrating our Independence Day and the founding of the United States, our Canadian brethren are celebrating the founding of an even more important Republic: the Family.

Independence Day is, for us Americans, the primordial celebration of our beginning as a people.  It is the original celebration of American patriotism, and patriotism is a good thing.  Patriotism is rooted in the same thing that Familiaris Consortio is rooted in: the conviction that the family is a natural good, instituted by God and reflective of him because we...READ MORE

Filed under second greatest commandment

Prophets and Priests

Monday, June 27, 2011 2:00 AM Comments (15)

One of the greatest aspects of our Church is that, while it certainly makes room for the office of prophet, it primarily relies on the office of priest on a day to day basis.  The reason that’s good is because we have a culture that is all agog for prophets and almost wholly ignorant of the need for priests.

What I mean is this:  our culture puts great emphasis on the charismatic individual with the story of personal inspiration and revelation.  That’s good as far as it goes.  We need to hear from people who have had an encounter with the living God.  Such people are, says St. Paul, letters from God with the word of God written on their hearts.  A Mother Teresa or a St. Francis or any...READ MORE

Filed under thinking faithfully

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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.