Bad news from the Supreme Court

We are hearing more bad news from the U.S. Supreme Court.  In a narrow 5-4 ruling today, they held that a pro-life Louisiana law designed to protect the health and safety of a mother was "unconstitutional."
The four reliably pro-abortion justices were joined by Chief Justice Roberts (sadly, a practicing Catholic) who did not want to overturn precedent.
But precedents aren't absolute.  For example, Supreme Court precedent in the past held that slaves were not worthy of the same rights as freemen.  That unjust precedent was of course overturned, as Roe v. Wade should be, since it is based on the completely faulty assumption that the government has no duty to protect innocent life.

The two justices nominated by the current President voted in favor of the pro-life law.  This is certainly a reminder that an important factor in deciding who to vote for as President is what kind of Supreme Court justices he will appoint.  This one vote difference on the Court will almo…

The Church and Racism

We are busy getting ready to move offices in the parish. But in between moving, I will try to add a few things about the Church and racism, as that continues to be in the news.  Please check back later for updates.

The first thing to note is that the Catholic Church is not a "Johnny come lately" to this issue.  She has always taught that there is one human family, descendants of Adam and Eve, and that the common bond of being brothers and sisters in Christ by divine adoption means that our ethnic differences should not be a source of division.  She has also taught that each person has a right to be  treated in accord with his or her inherent dignity, being made in the image and likeness of God.
As just one example, the Popes have condemned the institution of slavery since before the Europeans arrived in the New World.   Long before there were politically organized abolitionist movements, for instance, the Church had been on the forefront of insisting that mistreatment of human…

Mission priest visiting our region [UPDATED]

UPDATED June 27.: 

On the weekend of July 4th and 5th, we had been scheduled to welcome a visiting priest from the Archdiocese's Mission Cooperative Program.  Fr. Peter Asantebwana from the Diocese of Moshi in Tanzania, Africa.  The plan was for him to preach at of our Sunday Masses, next weekend reminding us of our missionary call and mandate.  Unfortunately, the Bishop of Columbus (where he is currently residing) has asked the missionaries not to travel due to the Covid epidemic.  So instead of a personal visit, he will be writing a letter to the parishioners, which will be read aloud at all of the Masses.

The quote above is from Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI, reminding us that sharing the Gospel with every nation and those in greatest need is at the core of who we are as the Catholic Church.

Tanzania is one of the most economically poor nations in the world, with most of its population living on less than $1 a day.
Please read this brochure for more information on the Diocese of Mosh…

Special Masses coming up

We will have two special Masses coming up over the next couple of weeks.  This Wednesday, June 24th, is the solemn feast of the Nativity of St. John the Baptist, observing the birthday of the greatest of Jesus Christ's prophets.  We will have Mass at 9:00 a.m. at St. Peter's.  On Saturday, the 4th of July, we will have a 9:00 a.m. Mass at St. Mary's to pray for our nation on her Independence Day.

Religious Freedom Week June 22-29 [UPDATED]

UPDATED: June 27th.  To include the letter of St. Thomas to his daughter, Margaret.

Our U.S. Bishops have asked us to reserve Religious Freedom Week from June 22nd through June 29th.  We have to be aware that our most precious freedom -- the freedom to worship God publicly according to our conscience -- is under attack.  Each year seems to bring new challenges.  This year proves no different.  The recent Supreme Court ruling declaring that Title VII requires recognition of transgender and homosexual "rights" will almost certainly cause lawsuits against Catholic organizations because of their belief in the nature of the human person, and likely result in attempts to suppress their religious freedom.
Here's some background reading on some topics in religious freedom from the U.S. Bishops' conference website.
I also recommend reading about two of the patron saints of religious freedom, St. Thomas More and St. John Fisher.

Well worth the read also is the letter from St. Tho…

What's the difference between Mass in person and on TV / video?

During the recent quarantine period, when many people were not able to go to Mass at all due to government shutdowns and bishops ordering the temporary suspension of the sacraments, many people became used to watching Mass on television or over the Internet via livestream.  Many of the bishops encouraged this as the "next best thing" to attending Mass in person.
That is fine.  We do what we have to in times of crisis to nourish our faith.
But it's come to my attention that now many people have become confused by this, and are asking if there's any real difference between watching Mass on television and attending in person.
The answer is a resounding, "Yes."
I've included an article below from a recent post on a good Catholic blog on the liturgy entitled
It helps explain that difference between the two.

Please note:  At this time in the Archdiocese of Cincinnati, the obligation to attend Mass has still been waived for all of the fait…

What does the Church teach about racism?

As many people know, the topic of racism has become a very hot topic in the light of recent events.
So it is good to know what the Church has always taught about this topic, from the beginning, since this is not a new problem.  The Church has had 2,000 years of experience in dealing with all of the problems that have plagued sinful mankind since the first sin of Adam and Eve.

That teaching is summed up in the Catechism of the Catholic Church.
The relevant section is copied below and at this link).

This includes some Scripture references and various writings of the saints and church documents, such as those written in the 1960s at the Second Vatican Council.

The Church does NOT take a stand on particular political solutions to the problem.  That is something that Christians can disagree on but should work out together harmoniously in accord with the common good, guided by these universal truths.

However, the principles and guidelines are not negotiable, since they come from the teaching of…