Thursday, July 20, 2006

Fun with Philosophy

















My freind Kate sent me this great philosophy cartoon from www.qwantz.com. If you click on the picture it should blow it up in a new window. It's got the best of both worlds: dinosaurs AND logical reasoning. Does it get any better than that?

Wednesday, July 19, 2006

Interviews with priests

This diocese is doing something called "Fishers of Men" a project for searching out young men who are interested in priesthood. Part of the process is going around and doing interviews of priests. That has been so good for me. I think every newly ordained priest should have to do this. It has given me a new appreciation for the priests of this diocese. It's way too easy to label someone and forget that they have histories that have made them the men that they are today. It reminds me of how blessed that I am to be part of this very unique oppertunity.

They also remind me that they have all weathered storms but have felt centered in the eucharist. I need to be better at finding the eucharist as my central point of prayer and as my source of strength. I need to remind myself that that is what the eucharist is and what is always has been.

Tuesday, July 18, 2006

Double Effects

I love the Lord of the Rings. I have the extended version of each of the movies and I try to watch each one at least once a year. I think they tell a lot about good vs. evil and use Christian imagery to tell a great story. You can imagine how frustrated I am to read this, then. So part of the profits are funding stem cell research You support a movie that promotes christian values and the people take your money and use it against us. There's just no justice on this earth.

Lebanon's Patriarch

I'm afraid I agree. I don't think anyone should be kidnapped but to kill tens if not hundreds of innocent civilians in order to take out a terrorist organization because they kidnapped 2 soldiers isn't right. Sorry Israel. I love you but this isn't just.

Monday, July 17, 2006

Some thoughts about the Holy Land

Having lived in the Holy Land for a while with Palestinians and taken classes with Israelis, I still don't feel like I have a great answer to the problems there. Abtout the best thing I can think I can say is that, in some way, no one belongs there. It's true that the Israilites were there in ancient times, in the time of the Old Testament. It's true that they were removed by the Roman empire and, for all intents and purposes, replaced by the Palestinians, though I don't get the feeling like they had a sense of ownership at the time.

How to solve the problem? Is it, as my Jewish prophets professor suggested, that Arabs can't stand a Jewish state? They have no fondness for that land. They have always looked down upon the Palestinians as less than Arabs until 1947 when they became martyrs for a cause? Or do we feel sorry for Palestinians who have been displaced by the communal guilt of the world over the massacre of World War II? I'm just not sure that there is a hard and fast answer. I am extremely skeptical of the answer that this has to do with having a democracy in the middle east and Muslim fears of cultural diversity, though I clearly remember crossing from Israel to Egypt and being told not to be caught alone with a woman because her husband will kill you if he finds out. If that was true in Israel, I would not be typing this blog. If I were to suggest a lesson we christians can learn from the situation, I would say that we can't become so fixated on a place or a building. Christianity is about a person - Jesus Christ. If St. Peters were to be destroyed tomorrow, the church would perdure. When the majority of Europe is Musilm, Christianity will still exist. As long as there is one good Christian somewhere in the world, the Spirit will be with us and there will be hope.

Sunday, July 16, 2006

It's too darn hot!

In the midwest, it's hot. We hit 94 degrees so far today and it feels all of it. I decided that today was a good day to give the people of Gilbert a missa briva, a short mass. 45 minutes and we were all out of church.

So, I had an abbreviated homily, needless to say. I talked about simplicity of life and how this is an important aspect of the Christian life. It's not purely pragmatic. In other words, it's not just about not having too much stuff sitting around. It has to do with not letting the stuff of life get in the way of our mission of evangelization. The stuff of life should always give way to the path to holiness. Then I sat down and we went on with life.