Weightier posts are coming soon! But for now a few quick-hitters:
At catholicvote.org, John Shimek tells us that “the fight for religious freedom just entered a new round. Another assault on First Amendment protections just reared its ugly head.”
What is this dastardly attack on religious liberty?
It’s President Obama’s executive order forbidding federal contractors from discriminating on the basis of sexual orientation or gender identity.
What practical impact could this executive order have? Picture this. A Catholic archdiocesan or diocesan adoption service, that needs federal monies in order to function, announces plans to place children in traditional families comprised of one father and one mother. Such a plan would violate the new executive order being drafted. What happens next? A phone call from the Feds? Burdensome fines? At this juncture, we don’t know.
He goes on:
Obama’s team is gearing up to place pressure on Catholic charitable social services to conform to its progressive agenda. Church services – like adoption agencies – will have to face a choice: Either conform to that agenda or shut their doors for lack of federal financial support. The choices are bleak.
Well, I see another choice. Run the agencies without federal money. How many millions of dollars has the Catholic Right ponied up to finance political campaigns, conferences, events, publications aimed at stopping the spread of marriage equality? Why not direct some of that money towards the adoption agencies you claim to love so much?
For instance, Catholic Right, if you really wanted to find money for your social services, you could stop funding…
Jeremy Hooper reports that Archbishop Salvatore Cordileone, Robert George, Maggie Gallagher, Brian Brown, and others have been meeting to plan their next steps now that NOM, the nation’s preeminent anti-equality organization, seems doomed to extend its multi-year streak of losing court cases, votes, and public support.
As I put it on twitter:
— DearCatholicRight, (@DearCatholicRt) June 18, 2014
Seriously, I can’t help but imagine that, at the start of their meetings, these guys call roll to the tune of “Yakety Sax.”
To change the subject a bit, at Patheos Catholic, Pascal Emmanuel Gobry is struck by the (NSFW) tumblr LES CORPS IMPARFAITS, “Because an imperfect body belongs to an incarnate, real person with whom communion is at least conceivable. And because there is a soupçon of transgression associated with the display of imperfect bodies in a society that holds up impossible ideals of ‘beauty’.
For we are called (as Augustine well knew) to be imperfect bodies, at least until the world to come, and the theology of the body is, on this Earth, to be a theology of the imperfect body, and this has consequences for its erotic dimension. As true lovers well know, one comes to cherish one’s lover’s bodily imperfections, to go from loving their bodies in spite of them, to loving these imperfections, and from there to loving them because of these imperfections, so that if we were able to trade them for supposed perfections we would not.
It is through loving these imperfections of your body that I grow to love you as you, not some idealized fantasy, but you personally. These imperfections are called, in other words, to be transfigured by love. Through these imperfections I am called to love you personally, for you, to become this selfless divine love of which carnal union is meant to be an icon.
Speaking of sex, Michael Boyle has started his long-form review series on Dr. Gregory Popcak’s book Holy Sex!. It promises to be a good series, given Michael’s incisive writing and the promises Popcak makes in the book’s introduction:
In Holy Sex! you will discover what it takes to celebrate a toe-curling, eye-popping, mind-blowing, deeply spiritual, and profoundly sacramental sexuality—a sexual relationship that is both fully sensual and fully equipped to move beyond sensuality so that it can become an authentically transformative, spiritual encounter. Heaven will be wedded to earth as you and your spouse walk the path toward becoming Infallible Lovers, the kind of lovers who can infuse their marital lives with a passion that reaches biblical proportions. Literally.
As Michael says: “Wow. Those are, needless to say, pretty bold claims.” I can’t wait to see how Popcak develops those claims, and I look forward to Michael’s commentary.
Finally, I’m losing hours these days reading the blog posts at Augustine-obsessed, Cambridge-attending, Catholic convert Elizabeth Stoker’s site. Today, she took down Robert Tracinski’s “chickenshittishly anti-Catholic ‘Dear Pope Francis’ open letter.” Love it. And she’s from Fort Worth!