Thursday, August 25, 2016

Droppings from the Catholic Birdcage: When We Already Know That Every Zygote Is a Baby, Why Waste Time Looking at Scientific Evidence?



In a just-published essay, National Catholic Reporter regular Phyllis Zagano, who was recently appointed to the papal commission to study ordination of women to the diaconate, writes that embryo destruction is the great moral shortcoming of IVF. Phyllis Zagano takes for granted — this is not questioned or questionable, in her theological worldview — that magisterial teaching holding that a conceptus is a human person, a baby, from the moment egg and sperm unite, is true and binding on all Catholic consciences. 

Wednesday, August 24, 2016

"We've Got to Get Past the Fact That Sexual Orientation Is a Reason to Discriminate": Video Resources



I continue working on the writing project I've been commissioned to write about Garrard Conley's painful, beautiful memoir Boy Erased, a story of growing up gay in a conservative evangelical Missionary Baptist preacher's family in Arkansas, and being sent to Love in Action in Memphis in 2004 for "reparative" "therapy." I mentioned this project early this month, and wrote a review of the book in July.

On Wrecking of Online Conversation Spaces by Trolls: Recent Commentary



Because I happen to have run across two very good pieces of commentary in the past day or so, about how trolls are trashing open discussion spaces online and causing some news sites to shut down their commentary threads, I commented on this topic on Facebook today. I thought some readers of Bilgrimage might be interested in what I had to say.

Footnote to Commentary on Bishop Vincent Long's Ann D. Clark Lecture: Link Is Now Back Up



A footnote to what I posted yesterday about the disappearing link to Bishop Vincent Long's Ann D. Clark lecture, which had been uploaded to the website of his diocesan newspaper, Catholic Outlook, on 19 August, and then vanished from that website after the lecture began to be discussed and circulated online on 20 August:

Monday, August 22, 2016

On a Disappearing Lecture by a Bishop Challenging Injustice Towards Gay Folks: Churches Hostile to Gays Might Consider Just Shutting Up about a Loving God



Last Friday, the publication Catholic Outlook, a publication of the Catholic diocese of Parramatta in Australia, uploaded to its website the text of a lecture given by the diocesan bishop Vincent Long Van Nguyen the preceding day as the annual Ann D. Clark lecture in Penrith, Australia. When I saw links to Bishop Long's lecture on Twitter over the weekend, I shared a link to the Catholic Outlook text of the entire lecture. That link is here.*

Peter Montgomery on How Right-Wing Christians Justify Support for Trump; Frederick Clarkson on Dominionist Agenda Hidden in Plain Sight in U.S. Right-Wing Christianity



One of several reasons I have found it difficult to blog here of late is that the ongoing discussion of Donald Trump's candidacy in the U.S. has pulled me into rather intense daily discussions on Facebook and Twitter of issues like the influence of race matters in the 2016 elections and the role religion is playing in the elections.

Friday, August 19, 2016

Michael Coren: Not Only Did Some Christians Oppose Slavery — Many Christians Defended Slavery, Citing the Bible and Longstanding Tradition



As Michael Coren reminds us in his Epiphany: A Christian's Change of Mind and Heart Over Same-Sex Marriage (Toronto: Signal, 2016), p. 61, not only did some Christians oppose slavery and work for aboltion, but many Christians also avidly defended slavery. Noting as they did so that slavery was practiced by the biblical patriarchs, blessed by the bible, taken for granted by Paul, and had long been considered essential to proper social order in Christian societies — just as the subordination of women to men was essential if Christian social order was to be maintained in Christian societies.