At a recent conference on the social doctrine I found myself in a room full of some very bright people who said they couldn’t figure out what the Church meant by a “just wage,” or a “family wage.” At the time I wasn’t sure what the problem was, and I’m not so sure now either. The social encyclicals do, after all, talk about this with some specificity. Read More
Today is the feast of St. Francis de Sales, and it is perhaps only too fitting that it should come on the heels of such controversy surrounding our government and our Church. I say “too fitting” because St. Francis provides us with exquisite lessons from which we can learn to address this dire moment. The first of them, of course, is trust. Read More
What the Obama Administrations Health and Human Services Department (HHS) has done is an attack, which is why Catholics need to be well-informed about what is going on so that they can tell their neighbors about it. So, here are the facts. Read More
Today’s feast of St. Anthony of the Desert is full of lessons, but of them I will draw out only two related notes. First, was his regular battle with the enemy. With some friends the other night my wife and I sat discussing the spiritual life and the role of the devil. St. Ignatius is adamantly clear that the evil spirit is weak. He flees when he is confronted with fervor and strength. He charges whenever we falter or delay. But ultimately he is weak. Read More
Just recently I finished watching the documentary Waiting for “Superman” about the state of public schools in our country. One doesn’t get the sense that the film-makers are right-wing kooks out to end the Federal Department of Education. The beginning starts with the admission that the maker of the film admires public school teachers…and the admission that he drives past three public schools every day to drop his child off at a private one.
There was a lot in Ryan McMaken’s defense of libertarianism last week that I disagreed with, and I’ve got notes here and there about why, but of all of them, the one “myth” of McMaken’s that I disagree with most is the one about the principle of solidarity. He says Catholics unfairly accuse libertarians of neglecting it, one of the firmest and most important of the social doctrine principles. Read More
One of the interesting bits from Pope Leo XIII’s Rerum novarum is in paragraph twenty where the good pontiff decides to lay out the responsibilities, and not just the rights, of employers and employees. Some of what he says would probably be accepted by the average American with no problem whatsoever while some other parts… well let’s see what he says.
Here is my piece in The Catholic Voice on prayer and voting.