Today I bring you a diverse collection of links, things sure to inform and inspire. At least that's how they feel to me. First up, we have a USA Today opinion piece by Catholic author and OSV alumna Amy Welborn, who writes about the pope's new book that sparked the recent condom controversy.
From Amy's post:
Now what confuses and even angers some Catholics is that along with this high sense of church is the acceptance of the reality — very clear throughout this interview — that human beings interact with the church at different levels of commitment. Some go to Mass every day, and others once a year. Some are saints, while others are barely hanging on. There certainly have been through history various ways to articulate God's call to humanity, some more forceful and dire, but that is not Pope Benedict's language. The way he has always expressed it is that it's not the church's role to force an individual to come closer, but rather to constantly invite. Not to impose, but to "propose" — one of Pope Benedict's favorite turns of phrase.
So in essence, he's saying some will agree, some won't. But what of "everyone else?" Contrary to popular impressions and maybe even the hopes of some Catholics, Pope Benedict doesn't see it as his job to issue blanket condemnations of that "everyone else." "We are sinners," he says. "We should try to do as much good as we can and to support and put up with each other."
That doesn't sound like "God's Rottweiler," a nickname Benedict earned as a cardinal. Nor does it sound like the words of a man too often condemned as intolerant, rigid and stuck in past centuries. In short, Pope Benedict is saying: It's not my job to either change the teaching or declare you eternally condemned for your failures in living it. That's God's job. And I'm not God.
Read Amy's column in its entirety HERE.
Over at Fathers For Good, there's a great interview with Matt Baglio, author of "The Rite," the book-turned-Hollywood-movie about exorcism.
From the FFG interview:
Baglio: I would say that the devil was never on my radar, but like most Catholics I still had this wariness about the topic of evil. I think I am more respectful of evil but I wouldn’t go so far to say that I am convinced the devil is behind all these problems that people claim are caused by an evil spirit. I will say that there is more to exorcism than just fakers and weak-minded people and this book really helped me to understand that exorcism is more about a person making the right choices. I felt comforted by the fact that at the end of the day, even if evil exists, the choice to open a doorway to it is entirely up to us.
To read the full interview, click HERE.
And finally, on the 30th anniversary of Dorothy Day's death, we have this beautiful post from Bridges and Tangents. There's a lot that could be said, but this post by Stephen Wang says it best:
It was the simplicity of her love – for Christ, for the poor, for whoever was sitting next to her. It was the fact that she took the gospel seriously, and literally; and believed it was something to be lived and not just explained away. It was her intelligence, which made her think about the causes of poverty and injustice, so that talking, writing, publishing and debating (all for ‘the clarification of thought’) were as much a part of her mission as opening soup kitchens and houses of hospitality. And it was her beauty – the beauty of her writing, the beauty of her life. Much of it, I’m sure, was romanticised – I was 19 and looking for heroes and heroines. But she remains one of the most important people in my life, and her life has shaped my own thinking and the way I look at the world as much as anyone else’s has.
Read the full Dorothy Day post HERE.