Blog author: jcarter
Wednesday, June 12, 2013

Cardinal Kurt Koch on the Dialogue Between the Catholic and Orthodox Churches
Religious Information Service of Ukraine

The Orthodox Church should “boldly examine its main ecclesiological problem, namely, autocephaly of national churches and their inclination toward nationalism.”

Climate Activism in Africa
Mark D. Tooley, First Things

We must reckon with the possibility that the people of Malawi need and want more electricity and economic growth than U.S. and Western climate activism.

How to Think About Gifts, Talents and Welfare
Sam Ellis, Values & Capitalism

We should all use our gifts for the betterment of God’s kingdom and for the betterment of ourselves and for our families.

Three Biblical Blessings That Illustrate Flourishing
Hugh Whelchel, Institute for Faith, Work, and Economics

The gospel, when understood in its fullness, is not solely about individual happiness and fulfillment; it is not “all about me.”

On June 11, 1963 Alabama Governor George Wallace became a national symbol for racial segregation by blocking the doors of a school to physically prevent the integration of Alabama schools. According to the Alabama Department of Archives, Governor Wallace “stood in the door-way to block the attempt of two black students, Vivian Malone and James Hood, to register at the University of Alabama. President John F. Kennedy federalized the Alabama National Guard, and ordered its units to the university campus. Wallace then stepped aside and returned to Montgomery, allowing the students to enter.” Unfortunately, the way Wallace defended what he did compromised the promotion of political and religious liberty for the generations that followed.

At the standoff, Wallace defended his actions by an official proclamation saying:

Alliance Defending Freedom has released a transcript and audio of a phone conversation an IRS agent placed to a non-profit organization that provides support to women in abusive pregnancy situations. In the recorded phone conversation, the agent lectures the president of the organization about forcing its religion and beliefs on others and inaccurately explains that the group must remain neutral on issues such as abortion.

In a May 28, Huffington Post article, Rev. Seamus P. Finn, OMI, exhibits a woeful lack of economic knowledge. In most cases members of the clergy can be forgiven somewhat for getting it so utterly and completely wrong. After all, few people go into the ministry because they’re fascinated with things like lean manufacturing techniques or monetary policy. But in this instance Finn must be taken to the proverbial woodshed for a lesson in what truly benefits the world’s poor.

Why Finn and why now, you ask? Most important, because he represents the Missionary Oblates of Mary Immaculate, and represents the Oblates as a board member at the Interfaith Center on Corporate Responsibility. He also serves on the executive committee of the International Interfaith Investment Group (IIIG). From this resume, one might gather that he is influential with the faithful on financial and business matters.

PowerBlog readers who have been following my series of posts on religious-based shareholder activism these past few months may recall my coverage of several ICCR proxy resolutions submitted to a host of companies this spring. I called attention to these resolutions because they draw more from leftist ideology than they do from centuries of deeper Christian thinking on social problems.

Now comes Finn with a HuffPo piece linking ICCR and IIIG initiatives with recent statements made by Pope Francis. While the current pope is no fan of capitalism – read about his views of the market economy here and here on the PowerBlog – Finn apparently despises it outright. (more…)

Blog author: jcouretas
Tuesday, June 11, 2013

schmemannMan’s nature is to reject it, because it can only be thrust on people by force. The most fallen possession is closer to God’s design for man than malicious egalitarianism. Possession is what God gave me (which I usually (mis)use selfishly and sinfully), whereas equality is what government and society give me, and they give me something that does not belong to them. (The desire for) Equality is from the Devil because it comes entirely from envy.

– Fr. Alexander Schmemann, The Journals of Father Alexander Schmemann, 1973-1983, page 330-331.

(HT: AOI Observer)

12 year old girls are a lot of things, but keenly aware of their own bodies, biological functions and the side effects of medications are typically not among their strong suits. Imagine a 12 year old girl who isn’t even sure how she might get Adolescent Girl with Head in Handspregnant, let alone if she is. Imagine a 12 year old who’s been coerced into having sex or has even been raped. Imagine she may or may not be pregnant, but has contracted an STD and doesn’t know it. Imagine she’s so afraid of being pregnant that she takes the ‘morning-after’ medication 2 or 3 times, “just to be sure.” Imagine the harm being done to her young body and mind, with no counsel from a parent and a medical professional. In fact, the parents have no rights here, despite the fact that there are only five states in the U.S. that do not have laws regarding piercings and/or tattoos for minors. The Obama administration has decided that a child facing an unplanned pregnancy needs less parental supervision than one who wants to get a nose ring. (more…)

Blog author: jcarter
Tuesday, June 11, 2013

Christians face being driven from the Middle East
Simon Kent, Toronto Sun

Fr. Peter-Michael Preble says “the entire Judeo-Christian heritage that once underpinned the region is threatened with collapse.”

‘Environmental Justice,’ EPA Style
Steven F. Hayward, The American

If the EPA wants to help low-income and minority populations, it should stick to promoting technologies that reduce pollution for everyone, rather than making environmental issues about racial justice.

The Unintended Consequences of Granting Home Schooling Family Asylum
Aaron Goldstein, The American Spectator

Even if you disagree with the German law prohibiting homeschooling, it is a law that is applied to anyone who wasn’t sending their children to school be they religious or not. Christians aren’t being singled out under this law.

A Guide to the 2013 Medicare Trustees Report
Charles Blahous, e21

Medicare’s HI trust fund, which finances hospital, home health following hospital stays, skilled nursing facility and hospice care services, is only one piece of a larger Medicare program and indeed represents less than half of total program costs.