Tuesday, December 2, 2014

martyrs, seeds of the Church...

Fran Szpylczyn reminds us of the four women killed in El Salvador thirty-four years ago today.  Strong stuff, especially the photo Fran places prominently atop the blog's post.  It's Advent--shouldn't we be celebrating barns and farm animals?  Y'know, good feelings????    Fran writes, "Ultimately, if you can’t stare at the Cross, deeply gazing at the Creche is not possible."

Exactly.  We celebrate the Creche because of the victory celebrated first in the Cross.  The women in El Salvador--whom Fran notes realized full well that staying in country would likely result in their deaths--understood this.  Part of Advent involves that same assessment.  Hence the waiting.

Read it all here.

clear thinking

Marking the season of Advent, Mark Shea and Simcha Fisher take apart "Mary, Did You Know?"  It's about time. One thing I wish Shea and Fisher would've mentioned:  effectively bad Marian theology leads to Nestorianism, a heretical splitting of Jesus' human and divine natures.  This amounts to a sloppy gnosticism wherein the divine exists alongside yet apart and thus unsullied by the human.  No.  "We believe in One Lord, Jesus Christ..."  (And a good ecclesiology student would continue here:  that same one Lord founded _one_ church...)  Our salvation doesn't work with Nestorianism.

Another approach:  "Mary, Did you know?" captures one of Thomas Day's criticisms in his (now two decade old) seminal study Why Catholics Can't Sing:  contemporary Catholic music presumes a divine perspective wherein the singer (cantor, choir leader, or congregation) conveys a perspective only God would know.  Of course, though, there's no way--apart from revelation in Scripture--for us to know anything like that.  Thus Day's point:  apart from the aesthetics (which Day hammers), contemporary Catholic worship music is bad theology.  Mark Shea, having once been an Evangelical, knows the broader point: contemporary Christian music makes bad theology.  Thus his point.  They're both right.

Want to hear/appreciate the fuel for this fire:  Go here (sung by a popular singer, too!)  but do not blame me.  Do not let this meme happen to you.

H/T Catholic Memes on Reddit