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Fortnight Sunday Readings Stress Culture of Life (698)

User's Guide to Sunday, July 1.

07/01/2012 Comment
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– Shutterstock

Sunday, July 1, is the 13th Sunday in Ordinary Time (Year B). July 4 is Independence Day, the completion of the U.S. Catholic bishops’ “Fortnight for Freedom.”

Readings
2 Kings 22:8-13, 23:1-3; Psalm 119:33-37, 40; Matthew 7:15-20

Our Take
Today’s readings are highly appropriate for the Fortnight for Freedom. That’s the special two-week period of prayer, fasting and reflection the Church is undergoing to promote religious freedom in America in light of several recent federal challenges to Catholics’ rights.

The fortnight started on June 21, the vigil of the feast of Sts. Thomas More and John Fisher. It ends on July 4. For EWTN coverage and specials for the fortnight, click...READ MORE

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Unalienable Rights (1457)

Publisher's Note from July 1 issue.

07/01/2012 Comment

“Life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness”: the “unalienable rights” granted to us by God, as ratified by the Founding Fathers of the United States of America.

I can’t think of a better way to prepare for Independence Day than to go back and revisit what the founders of this country had in mind when proceeding with their auspicious venture. Just a simple rereading of the Declaration of Independence and the Preamble to the U.S. Constitution provides sharp focus into the past — and the present.

Religious freedom — which one bishop called “the pre-eminent social-justice issue of our time” — is as germane today as it was to the framers of the Constitution.

That is why the Fortnight...READ MORE

Filed under religious liberty

Children Make a Joyful Noise for the Lord (7146)

July 1 issue feature on an early-childhood music program.

07/01/2012 Comment
Making Music Praying Twice

– Making Music Praying Twice

A group of parents sits comfortably in a circle on the floor, some with babies in their laps, some with toddlers or kindergarteners next to them or moving around the circle. A teacher, seated on the floor with the rest, leads parents and youngsters in a cheerful greeting song, tapping and swaying to the rhythm. Then the class participants fold their hands, bow their heads, and sing Ave Maria.

This is Making Music Praying Twice, a Catholic early-childhood music program. Early-childhood music classes have achieved huge popularity throughout the United States. Parents are attracted by the benefits of early music exposure and the desire to have fun with their children.

Making Music...READ MORE

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Archbishop DiNoia, Ecclesia Dei and the Society of St. Pius X (21148)

The native New Yorker, secretary for the Congregation for Divine Worship and the Discipline of the Sacraments, discusses his new role and the challenges he expects.

07/01/2012 Comments (222)

Archbishop J. Augustine Di Noia

– Wikipedia

In a bid to keep talks on course to a possible reconciliation, Pope Benedict XVI has appointed American Archbishop J. Augustine DiNoia as vice president of the commission charged with helping to bring the Society of St. Pius X back into full communion with Rome.

The 68-year-old Dominican and Bronx, N.Y., native, until now secretary of the Congregation for Divine Worship and the Discipline of the Sacraments, becomes vice president of the Pontifical Commission Ecclesia Dei. He spoke with Register correspondent Edward Pentin June 27 about his new position, some of the obstacles involved in bringing the society back into full communion, and his hopes for a successful resolution.

As...READ MORE

Filed under archbishop j. augustine dinoia, church unity, congregation for divine worship and the discipline of the sacraments, ecclesia dei, pope benedict xvi, second vatican council, society of st. pius x

Summer Commitment (1428)

Register editorial from July 1 issue.

06/30/2012 Comment
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– Shutterstock

Summer is a time for family barbecues and vacations, and some Catholics will use the opportunity to join pilgrimages and youth ministry conferences.

But as much as we welcome the shift in daily patterns that comes with summer, we can’t afford to put the defense of religious freedom on hold until Labor Day.

At press time, the U.S. Supreme Court had not yet ruled on the constitutionality of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act. But it’s reasonable to expect that the high court’s ruling will define the next chapter in the battle for religious freedom in the United States.

Yet, our concerns about the health-care bill should not distract us from the First Amendment challenge...READ MORE

Filed under catholic teaching, religious freedom

Let's Play! (755)

Putting Sports and Fun in Proper Perspective: July 1 issue feature.

06/30/2012 Comment
Shutterstock

– Shutterstock

Picture this: It’s a weekend afternoon. The boys of the neighborhood have gathered for their weekly game of stickball. The teams have been picked, and the ground rules have been laid. As usual, Mrs. Bruin’s Oldsmobile will serve as third base. If the ball bounces once before landing in old man Kotter’s flower garden, it’s an automatic double.
This scene was quite familiar to Bill Thierfelder, president of Belmont Abbey College in Charlotte, N.C., growing up in the Bronx. However, in his opinion, it is an unfortunate reality that such imaginative, spontaneous play has become a thing of the past.
“Play is a universal theme. As far back as we know it, we have examples of play (and...READ MORE

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Fortnight for Freedom in Boston: Cardinal O'Malley and Catholic Leaders Educate on the Issues (3812)

Town hall panel includes head of Knights of Columbus and president of Catholic University.

06/30/2012 Comments (13)
Justin Bell

Cardinal Sean O'Malley and John Garvey (with back to camera) participate in religious freedom discussion in Boston.

– Justin Bell

WATERTOWN, Mass. — The “contraception mandate” of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services poses a risk to people served by Church entities.

That was the consensus of Cardinal Seán O’Malley of Boston and lay Catholic leaders who spoke about religious-freedom issues during a nationally televised forum.

“Religious liberty is our first freedom on which all others depend; it’s not a right granted by our government — it’s a right that precedes our government. Religion is an essential aspect of the common good,” said the cardinal Monday evening.

The program, sponsored by the Catholic TV Network, was designed to coincide with the ongoing “Fortnight for Freedom,” an initiative of...READ MORE

Filed under abortion, affordable care act, archdiocese of boston, barack obama, bishops, cardinal sean o'malley, carl anderson, contraception, evangelization, fortnight for freedom

Perspectives on the 'First Freedom' (1914)

Saturday Book Pick: 'Religious Freedom: Why Now?'

06/30/2012 Comments (2)

Religious liberty is under assault around the world. Citing a 2009 Pew Research Center study, this new book, Religious Freedom: Why Now?, reports that most of humanity lives in countries “in which religious restrictions — whether imposed by government or social groups — reach high levels of severity.”
In many countries, religious repression enables dictatorships to exercise control over their citizens, who can have no other loyalty but to the incumbent regime. In some countries, a prevailing religion forges an alliance of altar and throne to protect its privileges at the expense of others. In the West, secularist hostility to religion in the public square leads to downplaying the right...READ MORE

Filed under politics, religious freedom, religious liberty

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