Media Watch

Bar Association Considers Pro-Life Proposal

FEDERALIST SOCIETY, Aug. 6 — The American Bar Association, the lawyers' professional association, will consider a resolution supporting the right to life of “those conceived but not yet born,” announced the Federalist Society, a law debating society.

The proposal may be ruled out of order on the grounds that it conflicts with the Bar Association constitution's vow to “uphold and defend the Constitution [of the United States].” Since the Bar Association has previously stated its support for Roe v. Wade, it may interpret “upholding the Constitution” to require defending abortion.

The lawyers' association will also consider a resolution opposing the newly-reinstated “Mexico City policy,” which prohibits organizations receiving U.S. money from advocating or performing abortions in foreign countries.

Do Seminaries Deserve an ‘F’ in Economics?

WALL STREET JOURNAL, Aug. 3 — In order to fulfill the Gospel command to care for the poor, ministers must understand basic economics — and seminaries may not be offering adequate preparation, the New York daily argued.

The Acton Institute, which seeks to defend classical liberalism based on Christian principles, surveyed of the presidents and deans of 251 American Christian seminaries. The survey found that seminaries devote little time to economics, and those that place the heaviest emphasis on economic issues are the most hostile to the free market, the Journal reported.

The survey covered every major Christian denomination in the United States. It found that students studied topics relating to social justice in an average of one-quarter of their classes. However, more seminary leaders thought their students left “not well prepared” on these topics (11%) than “very well prepared” (6%).

Catholic and Orthodox seminaries were the most likely to have “intensive” programs.

Woman Indicted in Dorothy Day Cottage Demolition

ASSOCIATED PRESS, Aug. 9 — A Staten Island, N.Y., woman pleaded innocent to charges of forging documents that made possible the destruction of a cottage where Catholic Worker co-founder Dorothy Day once lived, the wire service reported.

The indictment charged that Flory Henao doctored building permits that let developer John DiScala demolish the cottage before the city's Landmarks Preservation Committee completed deliberations.

Day, who was proposed for canonization by the late New York Cardinal John O'Connor, lived in the cottage until her 1980 death.

Auden: Poetry Isn't Prayer

FIRST THINGS, August/September — Edward Mendelson's new study, Later Auden, explores how W.H. Auden's adult conversion to Christianity affected his poetry, according to a review in First Things.

Auden first came to Christianity through recognizing his own inadequacy and sinfulness, and was influenced by the existentialist Soren Kierkegaard, but later wrote that Kierkegaard was “deaf” to the joyful aspects of Christianity.

Auden emphasized the goodness of the body and free will. After his conversion, he also emphasized that poetry is no substitute for God or prayer.