Saturday, February 7, 2015

Sunday Snippets - A Catholic Carnival (8 Feb 2015)

Happy Sunday, Day of Our Lord's Resurrection!  And welcome to Sunday Snippets, A Catholic Carnival, in which a merry band of blogsters and blogstresses of the papist persuasion gather to swap their weekly posts.  The center of this blog-a-rama is here, at This That and the Other Thing, home of chief blogstress RAnn. 

     I'll get to my own posts in a moment, but first I'd like to wrap up some of the past week's business, with a little help from the Liturgy of the Hours. Saturday's Non-Scriptural Reading from the Office of Readings was from Gaudium et Spes, the Constitution on the Church in the Modern World from the Second Vatican Council. This line caught my attention: "Man's worth is greater because of what he is than because of what he has." I mention this in the context of my ongoing discussion ("Hey folks, let's dialogue!") with atheists, which also informs several of the posts linked below. This reading makes a fitting conclusion to some of the ideas I explore in those posts.

     The quote from Gaudium et Spes zeroes in on something that stands out in my conversations with atheists, the fact that their worldview doesn't permit them to discuss what we are: their materialist philosophy only admits the importance of what we have. We have bodies, for instance, which have needs, and so on, but all we are is matter, no different, in essence, than the matter that makes up a dog, a rock, or anything else. In the materialist world view, "human worth" is a mere sentiment (if such a thing can be said to exist), nothing more.
     In the Catholic Christian world view, on the other hand, humanity is something special, both because we are made in the image and likeness of God (Genesis 1:27), but also because Christ sanctified humanity through the incarnation. As St. John Paul the Great said in his 1995 address to the United Nations:

As a Christian, my hope and trust are centered on Jesus Christ . . .Jesus Christ is for us God made man, and made part of the history of humanity. Precisely for this reason, Christian hope for the world and its future extends to every human person. Because of the radiant humanity of Christ, nothing genuinely human fails to touch the hearts of Christians.

     That is why the future of humanity belongs, not to the champions of "matter", but to Christ and His Church.

And now, here are the past week's posts from Principium et Finis:

Monday – “The Presentation of Our Lord, Atheism, and the Problem of Suffering”  Just as I was gathering my thoughts for my Feast of the Presentation post, I ran across a story about an angry atheist blaming God for all the trouble in the world.  The rest, as they say, was history. 

Tuesday – “Domenico Scarlatti  - Te Deum” We heard from the father last week, now the son.  They really don’t make music like this anymore, at least not this side of Heaven. 

Wednesday – “Abortion Myth # 18” A crazed abortion enthusiast picked up last week’s “Abortion Myth” on twitter, and his, ahem, “brilliant” rejoinder gave me the idea for Myth #18.  Thanks, Dude! 

Thursday – “Mortar Gunnery, Molly Pitcher, and Altar Serving” Is everyone tired of arguing about altar girls yet?  This throwback from last May is one of those mix and match things, but it really does all fit together (and allows me to prove that I did, at one time, have hair). 

Friday – “What Would Darwin Do?” Another look at our unbelieving friends, this one pondering the curious fact that, if Darwinian evolution is right, atheists are slotted for extinction.  Be careful what you wish for . . .