Kind, Contentious & Fretful Reading – UPDATED

It is difficult for any read to be at once Kind, Contentious and Fretful, so you realize I am not talking about a single piece, but about several pieces now live at Patheos and elsewhere — what these pieces all have in common is that they are well-worth your time to read and think about.

First up: Kindness — if you missed it this weekend, do read Timothy Dalrymple’s open letter to those who expected to be raptured this past weekend. It’s a very good demonstration of a Christ-like response, and frankly, it directly counters some of the gleeful caricaturing drawn at the expense of Christians, this weekend.

At First Things, David Mills also tackles the subject with a tinge of sympathy.

Also, Taylor Marshall talks about Catholics and Rapture and Eschatology

Second: Contention — there is no shortage of that on the internets, of course, but here I am directing you to the waning days of Patheos’ Symposium on Family, Faith and the Future of Social Conservatism, where this afternoon we will see Tim Muldoon’s profound thoughts about Gay Marriage and the Gamaliel Moment get challenged by Accepting Abundance’s Stacy Trasancos, who declares that Christians need to be more, not less, entwined in our politics and laws. That piece should go live any minute, so check here for it

And the Fretting: Max Lindenman, who did such a terrific job of holding down the fort over here while I was in Rome, and then while I was sick, is in the process of creating his own blog here at Patheos, and he is a little worried about the process of getting naked amid all those newly empowered readers:

As I prepare to launch my first big-boy blog, I find myself in a paradoxical position. Without this new egalitarianism, I’d never have gotten a venue. A dropout of the master’s program at ASU’s Walter Cronkite School of Journalism and Telecommunications, I have no real credentials. I have never covered a journalistic beat, never worked my way up from the police desk (if such things still exist). I belong to a by-now familiar type: the half-baked polymath who taught himself to write on message boards and in chatrooms. Not only will I have to sell myself to readers who may in fact know my subjects better than I do, I’ll get to see their feedback metastasize in the combox, an arena I will enter my peril.

All this freedom and interconnectedness is a great thing—love it. But it’s also made a mug’s game mugsier than ever. It might make me; it could just as easily break me.

In between the fretting, he takes a typically smart look at how blogs and alternative media have substantially changed the way we consume news, and even how the mainstream press is adjusting. So much for blogs being “over,” do read it all.

Appreciating the Unappreciated: How Black Catholic Nuns helped sow the seeds of change

In other news, my hubby and I were just talking yesterday about how women are taking over the social sciences, and today Instapundit has interesting linkage on that subject.

Ed Driscoll: We’ve got a man like Jimmy Carter, again. I can see that.

Heather King: Extols Magnificat Magazine, about which enough good things cannot be said!

The Pope’s Powerful Blend: I think a lot of folks could get into it, frankly.

Thinking outside the box: Twenty and Engaged

Some stunning photography

Call yourself “enslaved” — I’m not.

Finally, is this the guy scaring Obama?

And yes, that is Buster’s baby picture!

About Elizabeth Scalia
  • Manny

    Forget the politics. I think it’s now unquestionable that Obama is not on the Israel’s side. It’s not just his statement about returning to the 1967 borders. Yes it’s true, that’s the trajectory of where the two states will align, at least as a starting point. But the problem with him coming out with that blurb now is that he just took Israel’s bargaining chips off the negotiating table. He undermined their future negotiations. But even worse that the ’67 borders statement is Obama’s lack of taking off the table the Palistinian’s right of return issue. Israel cannot comprimise on that. So in essence what Obama did was reduce Israel’s negotiating power and inflate the value of the Palistinian’s negotiating chip. This was clearly an attempt to bolster the Palistinians over the Israelis.

    I hope to God Obama is a one termer.

  • Manny

    On a searate issue, I’m very disappointed with Tim Muldoon’s defeatest position on gay marriage. Traditional marriage has won every single referendum, and yet he’s ready to give up the ghost? You don’t lose until the other side wins the game, unless that is if you prematurely quit. I can’t help feel that somehow Mr. Muldoon is deep down insecure, perhaps embarressed, about the Catholic marriage position.

  • Rhinestone Suderman

    Manny, yes, I think a lot of Catholics are insecure, and/or embarrassed about the Catholic marriage position.

    And that’s a problem.

    (And Obama was never on Israel’s side.)

  • Mandy P.

    About blending the two masses. I really don’t get the fighting between the NO and the EF people. Maybe its because I was brought up as a Protestant and am a new convert, but I don’t understand what exactly is wrong with the NO. And I don’t care that some people want the mass in Latin in the EF. That’s fine with me. I’d prefer a mass where I can understand what’s going on, but really my focus is on the Lord. So long as I can get Jesus during Holy Communion, I’m happy!

  • Manny

    @Rhinestone – I don’t understand why they should be. Same gender marriage is an absurdity. It’s like telling me that one and one is now three. I know Obama never supported Israel. I don’t know what happened last week was a slip up or he intended it, but it’s clearly out in the open now.

    @Mandy – As a cradle Catholic, I agree with you. I prefer mass in the language I most understand. It’s fine to have options for those that want the Latin, but I feel it’s critical that the vernacular be for the general public. After all, the mass was originally in Greek, per the Eastern half of the Roman Empire, and when it got to the western half, they translated the mass into the vernacular of its place – Latin. So mass was originally intended to be in vernacular.

  • RE: Tim Dalrymple’s Piece

    That was a kind letter! I wonder if it will reach any of them.

    He did point out something you had pointed about about the echo chamber phenomena that can occur:
    I believe that he got caught up in a particular way of looking at the scriptures, and was eventually surrounded by people who believed likewise.

    Since you pointed that out in your Vatican visit, I’m noticing it more and more. (I believe that is called selective attention in psychology.)

  • Mandy P.


    I’m really glad for the mass in the vernacular. In all honesty, it took me two years of study just to get up the nerve to step foot into a Catholic church. If I’d gotten there and not been able to understand what was going on, I dunno if I’d be in communion right now.

  • http://none Jim Ross

    Women taking over the social sciences? Well, yes they are, in a way. I think I can draw a more accurate picture, if you’ll first allow me to set up the landscape.

    The most important force in the past two centuries is the growth of The Technological Society (Thanks Jacques Ellul). A traditional society first deploys techniques only to accomplish familiar tasks. Very quickly, the deployment of techniques alters the society in unavoidable ways.

    Classic examples: First the automobile changes the way we travel to Grandma’s. Then it changes how we get to work, how far from work we live, the organization of shiftwork, the structure of highways and cities. Now think of the ways that owning two cars has changed the the nature of your marriage and your family life. Largely unavoidable changes. Think of technology as a river that is first contained by the society that it flows through. Eventually, it erodes its banks
    and follows a direction more suited to its own dynamics. The banks, i.e. the society, is rearranged to suit the properties of the technologies themselves.

    Men fell into the river in large numbers near the end of the ninteenth century. The technologies of the day could be imagined as extensions of mens’ personal actions. Applied physics, applied chemistry, applied biology made men’s actions faster, more powerful, and of greater scale. Factory work, mechanized farming, railroads, and the horrific mechanized warfare of my grandfather’s day are examples.

    The movement we know as feminism is the vast mudslide that occurred when the women and children fell in. Perhaps we could call this “Landscape With Mudslide”.

    Ever since women fell into the river Technology, family life has become “technogized”. Applied psychology, applied sociology, applied anthropology, etc. etc. form a kind of “human management technology”, and women appear to excel at it.

    The university itself is one gigantic human management operation. It is no wonder that feminist “human management technologists” would dominate that game. I don’t see any social forces on the horizon to change the picture. The more the universities resemble “ideological factories” the more that human management technologies will dominate the curriculum.

    Jim Ross

  • Rhinestone Suderman

    Manny, they’re ashamed because secular society tells them the church’s stance on marriage is “old fashioned”, “Outdated” and, possibly, intolerant, and how can they be so unkind? Don’t they know many gays are wonderful people, wonderful parents? Don’t they know marriage is all about adults being in love? That’s it’s not just about raising families anymore, and that it’s really about being able to get your partner’s property when they die? (Sooner or later, it always comes down to cash.) Don’t they know it’s heterosexual males, who are the worst child abusers, and who beat up women? Look at the pedophilia scandal! Isn’t it time the church changed, before more horrible things happen?

    And so forth.

    Basically, they’re ashamed because society is pushing gay marriage at the moment, and wants them feel guilty; and they’re falling for it.

  • Rhinestone Suderman

    As for Obama and Israel. . . it was only a matter of time before he made his real feelings about it quite clear. Some of us tried to point this out before the election, and were told “Oh, don’t be so paranoid! He won’t abandon Israel! And how can you possibly say he doesn’t support it?”

    No one forced the American people to vote him into office; we committed that act of foolishness all on our own.

  • Will

    I agree with #4 Mandy P.

  • newton

    On a not-so-personal note… Woman, I need to apologize to you.

    I didn’t realize that my blockquotes were not going to work on that last comment that I wrote on Sunday. I never believed that it was going to be a real spaghetti code over there! I wanted to make sure all of the HTML coding was as good and clean as possible, but I was being pressured to join my family in the backyard and they didn’t understand what was taking me so long. In a bit of a hurry, I didn’t check the code. Thus, the mess.

    You can delete it if you want.