Wednesday, September 12, 2012

"God has given us the Commandments to educate us to liberty and genuine love"

Tuesday, September 11, 2012

Some discussion of women in the diaconate at ByzCath. Both men and women can serve others - but is it the case that women deacons were raised to Holy Orders? Does the deacon have a place in the hierarchy of authority? (Or is it the case that the diaconate, for both men and women, is a separate Holy Order from that of the presbyterate, as one commentor claims?)

While it may convince some that the priest is male because he represents Christ, what about the question of why is Christ male? Arguing that He is male because He is the Bridegroom while the Church is the Bride may be sufficient for some, but isn't the difference in role not something accidental?

Tomás Luis de Victoria, Ave Regina Caelorum

Tomás Luis de Victoria (1548-1611) Ave Regina caelorum a 8

Tomás Luis de Victoria (1548-1611) Missa Ave Regina caelorum
Forte's joining the fray is significant, and in some ways surprising.

It is significant because he is one of the best-known Italian bishops, including at the international level, and enjoys a substantial following among his brother bishops, who in fact appointed him as their representative at the worldwide synod on the new evangelization that will be held in Rome in October. Of the four selections he is the only one without the scarlet, the other three being all cardinals: Angelo Bagnasco, Giuseppe Betori, and Angelo Scola.

It is surprising because Forte has always been considered a theologian of the progressive camp, the camp that most opposes, and not only in Italy, the passage from "for all" to "for many."

At the memorable ecclesial conference in Loreto in 1985, which marked the ascent in the leadership of the Italian Church of then-auxiliary bishop of Reggio Emilia Camillo Ruini, Forte was fighting for the other and the winning side, together with the president of the episcopal conference at the time, Anastasio Ballestrero, and Cardinal Carlo Maria Martini. And it was he who gave the introductory theological presentation.

This is why he has not rarely ended up in the crosshairs of his more conservative theologian colleagues.

For example, in a 2004 article Fr. Nicola Bux, an adviser – both then and now – to the congregation for the doctrine of the faith, singled out Forte as one of the "promulgators" of a "weak and derivative theology" concerning the resurrection of Jesus, reduced "to an 'etiological legend,' or an artifice in support of the worship that the Judeo-Christians were conducting on the site of Jesus' burial."

But Forte's taking the field is even more surprising because it marks in him a change of judgment with respect to the past.

Monday, September 10, 2012

Behavior psychology and Mass Marketing... as Tools of Evangelization?

Full and Active Participation: The Challenge of “Porta Fidei” and the Promise of Right Brain by Deacon Dominic Cerrato (via Insight Scoop)

Given all that has been said to promote the Year of Faith effectively along with its associated catechetical programs, a new marketing approach needs to be crafted that puts joy before the law. It must lead with the contagious love of Jesus Christ, demonstrating how, by attending these various efforts, the participants will share in that joy by experiencing that love. One way this new marketing approach can be crafted is through the Right Brain Research of Dr. Charles T. Kenny. 22 Right Brain has discovered that a brand is created when people make an emotional connection that transforms the specific product or service into an implicit promise. This promise drives their perceptions, the way they feel, their behavior, and their expectations. By understanding this emotional connection as it relates to the product or service, a highly effective marketing effort can be crafted. The Right Brain approach, inasmuch as it seeks to fulfill a deeply felt emotional need, corresponds directly to the kind of dynamic that moves passive participation to active participation.

Historically, marketing approaches tended to be more left brain. Where left brain describes an analytical approach often expressed through a logical argument, right brain keys in on the emotional benefit for the consumer. As explained in St. Thomas’ ethics, and as illustrated by Fr. Barron’s baseball analogy, these two approaches are by no means mutually exclusive. Quite the opposite: they are inclusive and complementary insofar as the joy (right brain) makes possible a fuller appreciation of the law (left brain). The left brain acts to balance, control, and explain actions that are driven by emotional needs seated in the right brain. All human behavior is an interplay of the left brain and the right brain, a beautiful and synergistic interconnectedness.

Motivating people to participate in a catechetical event is subject to the same universal laws of human behavior and psychology that govern any great brand campaign. These include appealing to one or more of the 47 emotional needs discovered by Right Brain Research, and overcoming one or more of the emotional barriers (i.e., fears) that prevent people from responding. In their commercials, the Catholics Come Home advertising appeals to such emotional needs as: love and acceptance, affiliation, community, hope, intimacy, immortality, and redemption. In those same commercials, they also help people overcome such emotional barriers as: fear of rejection, guilt, fear of judgment, and fear of inadequacy. This achievement can be duplicated using Right Brain Research in the promotion of all catechetical programs.

the Motu Proprio Porta Fidei

I need to read Bellarmine.

And how he explains the separation between temporal authority and spiritual authority.

What Barack Obama Could Learn from St. Robert Bellarmine by Gerald J. Russello

3. Laws affect persons. Bellarmine was adamant in his “On Laymen,” part of a series of works called the Controversiae, published between 1586-89, that “from the fact that political authority is temporal and its end is external peace and that man does not make judgments on internal matters, it is rightly inferred that it can oblige only to perform temporal and external acts but not that it cannot bind in conscience.” This is a crucial point that secularists often overlook, since they have a utilitarian or agnostic view of the law. For them, regulations like the HHS mandate simply preserve “health care” or “equality,” and affect only external actions. For them, such laws do not touch religious belief, which is considered only an internal matter and not one concerned with action.

Sunday, September 09, 2012

Cardinal Burke's Address to the Kenyan Canon Law Convention


Someone wrote in linking to this, "The ever amazing Cardinal Burke on how to remake society in a Just and Christian mold...organically." I think that may be an overestimate of its practical usefulness with respect to civic reform.

Canon law is necessary instrument for the life of the Church. But a conference on canon law is not the same as a symposium on the lay vocation or "spiritual" theology, but one should not take the cardinal's remarks on the universal call to holiness (borrowing heavily from John Paul II) as being complete, nor a program for the renewal of political community.