Friday, November 30, 2007

Spe salvi

SPE SALVI facti sumus ait sanctus Paulus Romanis et nobis quoque.
"In hope we were saved, says Saint Paul to the Romans, and likewise to us" so begins Pope Benedict's second encyclical, following Deus Caritas Est, God is Love.
Like the his first encyclical letter I found it very easy to read, full of deep Christian wisdom, filled with quotations from the Epistles and the writings of the Doctors of the Church and other philosophers both divine and diabolic.
Though not directed particularly at Liberation Theology the encyclical makes it quite clear that
The critique of Heaven is transformed into the critique of earth, the critique of theology into the critique of politics...

Thus Biblical hope in the Kingdom of God has been displaced by hope in the kingdom of man, the hope of a better world which would be the real “Kingdom of God”.
Striving for perfection on Earth, be it for social justice or economic fairness is a task which never ends
What this means is that every generation has the task of engaging anew in the arduous search for the right way to order human affairs; this task is never simply completed.
Our hope is not hope for this world but for the hereafter:

Christians here on earth do not have a permanent homeland, but seek one which lies in the future.
In this future homeland, made available to us through Jesus Christ is where our hope lies.

Let us say once again: we need the greater and lesser hopes that keep us going day by day. But these are not enough without the great hope, which must surpass everything else. This great hope can only be God, who encompasses the whole of reality and who can bestow upon us what we, by ourselves, cannot attain.

The translation of the encyclical itself is very good. Better than some of the translations of the Holy Father's writings which have been professional published. It is posted on the Vatican web site here.

Monday, November 26, 2007

More on stem cells

Reports from the Weekly Standard state that several groups working independently have managed to turn adult cells into embryonic stem cells, without having to use babies, human eggs, or other morally indefensible techniques. It seems that America's President, who supported research on such techniques all along, instead of the unproven and ethically unsupportable use of stem cells from aborted human babies, was right.
Have no doubt some supporters of embryonic stem cell research will fight tooth and nail to continue their research, even in the face of evidence that it is scientifically unnecessary as well as morally bankrupt. Most competent scientists will look at what the research has shown and abandon this line of work. Of course morally ethical scientists will have been working on this alternate process or another field of research all along. Thank God that He has rewarded their efforts so quickly. And may he bless those who have stood the line against the used of embryonic stem cells from the unborn.

The Way of the Student

Amy Welborn has an excellent post on voting, living and minimalism.

Tuesday, November 13, 2007

Busy Days

Between the many autumn tasks that have been piling up and working I have been reminiscent in my blogging.
The warnings on the Golden Compass have reached my local parish. It's nice to see that word is getting around. I fear that unless people stay away in groves that New Line Cinema will not get the message. The worst part is that the film maker deliberately down played the anti-Christian message of the story. Was this done in an effort to subvert our children or simply a callus effort to prevent bad publicity which might affect movie gross? If it's the later they have obviously failed.
As with many movies of questionable value I have to make the decision on whether to see the movie, so as to review it, or to simply count on other bloggers to review the propaganda piece. This is most likely what I'll do, so as to minimize New Line's profit.
So pass it on. With any luck the Main Stream Media will pick this up eventually, though I don't count on a friendly hearing from them.