Mark, chapter 6: The dance, the promise, the beheading

Tags

, ,

John the Baptist, model of conscience.

Spoke truth to power, as many self-righteous of this day claim they do, when they know nothing of the kind of power he faced, autocratic, middle eastern, first-century A.D., rule by whim of ruler.

Herodias the trophy wife gave the word to her dancing daughter, voluptuous, tempting, the coolest of chicks. Her stepfather Herod, a potentially decent sort, got lassoed. Had been drinking, the kid got to him (and his hangers-on, watching his every move), he promised the world or half of the part he controlled (I said POWER). The fool.

The angry mother told her. The head. She told the fool in charge, gulp. He liked John, liked to listen to him. John used the occasions not to butter him up but to admonish him. He was not going to back down, knew what was right and what was his duty. Very gutsy guy. Went with his conscience, angered the spiteful woman.

Now what? The others are looking at him. He had promised, had he not? What kind of king was that whose promise meant nothing? He swallowed hard. Turned to the hatchet man (not a figure of speech, as we use the phrase today), said get the head. Hurry up, chop-chop.

The daughter, learning how things are done, took the head on a platter (not figurative), and the mother smiled.

St. John the Baptist, pray for us.

St. Francis is recruited to help save planet earth

Tags

, ,

Take the
St. Francis Pledge

Pope Francis cares about how the most vulnerable people among us are affected by climate change. Commit to protecting the people God loves by taking the St. Francis Pledge.

By pledging, you commit to praying, acting, and advocating to solve climate change. How you fulfill those commitments is up to you. We’ll send you resources and information to guide your choices. 

After taking the Pledge, you will receive action alerts to make a difference, carbon-reduction strategies to live justly on the Earth, and updates on Catholics leading the charge to solve climate change.

Let’s respond to Pope Francis’s call to act on climate change. Together, we can make a difference.

Dan Misleh,
Executive Director

Holy chutzpah, this assuming St. F. believes in man-made, man-preventive global w.

Why does Univision’s man on horse bother about Trump?

Tags

, ,

Crusader with microphone:

Over on CBS This Morning, Ramos again proved he is much more interested in pushing an agenda and opinion. Taunting Trump, the reporter insisted that the candidate can’t win:

JORGE RAMOS: Nationwide he doesn’t have the Latino vote and without the Latino vote, he cannot make it to the White House and he’s realizing that. You know, let’s talk in a year from now, let’s see first if he becomes the nominee and if he becomes the nominee he’s going to be pleading for the Latino vote because without the Latino vote, without 60 million that will go to the polls in 2016 he can’t make it to the White House, and he knows it.

However: If he’s not gonna win, why bother about him? Or does Ramos mean he’s not gonna win if Ramos bothers about him? The civilized world depends on Ramos!

Common Core Standards: To Know Them is not to Love Them

Tags

,

Originally posted on Diane Ravitch's blog:

Politico reports on the opinion poll conducted by the rightwing journal Education Next:

“COMMON CORE WAR MELLOWING?: Support for the Common Core standards is dropping, but it’s not in a freefall. In fact, it might even be stabilizing. Education Next’s new annual survey [http://bit.ly/1KsoOF2 ] released with the Program on Education Policy and Governance at Harvard Kennedy School shows overall support slipped this year, falling four percentage points to 49 percent. A year earlier, however, support fell 12 points in one year. The survey has two more key takeaways on Common Core: Democrats over Republicans favor the standards (by a 57 percent to 37 percent margin), and the standards are becoming less popular with teachers. (Seventy-six percent of teachers in 2013 said they support the standards compared to 40 percent this year).”

To read the Education Next report, go here.

The big story here is the dramatic decline in…

View original 91 more words

Pope Francis said WHAT about St. Francis? Referencing whom?

Tags

, , ,

I think this from # 66 of Laudato si says a lot about Pope Francis:

Saint Bonaventure held that, through universal reconciliation with every creature, Saint Francis in some way returned to the state of original innocence.[40]

In some way, eh? State of original innocence? That would be before Adam and Eve got the heave-ho from paradise.

Adam, Eve expelled

Heave-ho

So maybe, in some way, the pope’s patron was cured of original sin, placing him second only to the Blessed Virgin Mary, who was conceived without it! Why haven’t we heard about this before Laudato si?

Because we have not been reading our St. Bonaventure, who floats this arresting speculation in The Major Legend of Saint Francis, VIII, 1, in Francis of Assisi: Early Documents, vol. 2, New York-London-Manila, 2000, 586 — which I know from reading Laudato si footnote 40 (of Francis’s 172).

The next sentence says more:

This is a far cry from our situation today, where sin is manifest in all its destructive power in wars, the various forms of violence and abuse, the abandonment of the most vulnerable, and attacks on nature.

Pope Francis is on firm, well-traveled ground here, except that what it’s a far cry from is the state of innocence granted to St. Francis because of his universal reconciliation with every creature, which we know because the early Franciscan Bonaventure mentioned it in his Life of the saint..

So Pope Francis bolsters his argument for saving the earth with a throwaway line from a 13th-century philosopher-theologian writing a book about the revered founder of his own religious order.

One foot in the 21st century as a prophet against man-made global warming, the other in the 13th as off-the-wall homilist. That’s our pope, too easily impressed.

Our modern Pope is stuck in ancient ways

Tags

, ,

Footnoted references in Pope Francis’s Laudato si range from Francis of Assisi’s Early Documents to Basil the Great — 172 in all, just two of them not a church source, one of these a noted 20th-century philosopher, the other a Muslim spiritual writer.

He offers no reference to any scientific authority or commentator, nothing but airy meditation material, bad poetry aimed primarily at the feelings, one a priori argument after another.

It’s a model of church talk, apodictic as can be. Why is he so apodictic? And formal? And so dependent on authority rather than argument made by his sources?

He concedes nothing. Nowhere is there a “coal does a lot of good, heating homes of many poor people, but . . . ” for instance. Nope, it’s “you have to shut up and listen,” it’s your holy father talking.

From the mountain top, or on one of the seven hills of his see city, he speaks. We are down below, being told what to do. He’s supreme, we are devotees.

But he’s actually from Argentina, and seems to think he knows how to help poor people because there are so many of them in his country. That’s no recommendation, for my Peter’s pence.

Maybe he should consider a country where there are not so many poor people, the United States, for instance, where tho on the rise it’s where every poor person in the world would give his eye teeth to live and where Mexican and other people are dying to get in.

Why not look to the one country where everyone wants to live and see how things are done there, one of the world’s most free-market capitalist countries?

Instead, he rails against free markets and pulls an Obama, making nice with dictators and other autocrats, he himself effectively dictating, under cover of biblical-style prophecy, how we should to run our countries and our lives. A little second-guessing of yourself, Holiness, a little humility!

Do not laugh at end-of-world predictions, says Pope Francis

Tags

This from Pope Francis on global destruction gives us a flavor of his worldview:

161. Doomsday predictions can no longer be met with irony or disdain. We may well be leaving to
coming generations debris, desolation and filth.

The pace of consumption, waste and environmental change has so stretched the planet’s capacity that our contemporary lifestyle, unsustainable as it is, can only precipitate catastrophes, such as those which even now periodically occur in different areas of the world.

The effects of the present imbalance can only be reduced by our decisive action, here and now. We need to reflect on our accountability before those who will have to endure the dire consequences.

He truly wants to save the world, lives in fear of the Apocalypse. Walking through the valley of the shadow of death, he fears evil in the worst way. Which coming from a Pope is scary, and I fear it.

Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 684 other followers