Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Two Points about Marriage

Marriage is, first of all, a HUMAN institution. It is not, first, a state institution. It is not, first, a religious institution. Talking about the religious aspect of marriage is like talking about the religious aspect of a priest. You cannot have a "religious" marriage without a "natural", human marriage first any more than you can have a "religious" priest without having a "natural", human man first. The religious institutions elevate (in the eyes of the Church) the marriage to a sacrament but the religious institution does not create the marriage. The state regulates the marriage but the state does not create the marriage. The marriage would exist without the religion or the state. It is a natural institution that exists in all human cultures. It is a community that is created within a community.

    Another important aspect of marriage is that the community recognizes it. Now there are and have been a myriad of human communities on earth and each community knows of marriage. The couple and their children make a small community and the larger community within which they live recognizes that. Even if they move to a new community their marriage will still be recognized as a marriage. Imagine, in the time of cavemen, a migrating couple moving from Asia across the land/ice bridge between Siberia and Alaska and meeting up with a new community in the New World. Most likely, the first thing the Native Americans would ask would be "Is this your woman?" and "Is this your husband." And if the answers are in the affirmative, the new community would probably (unless under the sway of a very corrupt leader who wanted to take the woman) respect the marriage. Even if there were such a corrupt leader, he would at least have to give some excuse for taking the woman and he would have probably have to kill her husband first before he could have her. Because every human community knows what marriage is.

Sunday, July 17, 2011

Two Great Questions About Marriage

1. Why is it important that the couple have sex?
2. Why is it important that they just be two?

I would love to see if anyone can answer these two questions.

Saturday, June 25, 2011

My Take on Gentleness in the Real World

I completely agree with the part of the article about: "Gentleness. Humility."

However, the girl's video was a response to this video: which is obviously some lighthearted humor, "a total throwaway song". It went viral and was posted on Aggie Catholics It is about this list which started with Patrick Madrid in Envoy Magazine The list has been reworked, expanded, and re-posted elsewhere since then. So, if we can't have some lighthearted humor, how will we ever attract anybody to such a glum religion? I would take them more as silly, funny songs. In order to not be too judgmental, I think it is pretty easy to hear them that way.

Monday, April 4, 2011


ARMY: "You remain obligated to follow orders that involve interaction with others who are homosexual even if an unwillingness to do so is based on strong, sincerely held moral or religious beliefs. As expressed in the Manual for Courts-Martial regarding a Soldier's obligation to obey orders: 'the dictates of a person's conscience, religion, or personal philosophy cannot justify or excuse the disobedience of an otherwise lawful order.'"

Sunday, March 27, 2011

How the Church Teaches about her Institutions

Does the Church actually come out and publicly reject formerly Catholic institutions that have lost their way and are no longer fit to be called Catholic? Not usually. Take, for example, Georgetown University. It still publicly proclaims itself as Catholic. The Catholic Church has not publicly proclaimed otherwise.

So how can we, as Catholics, know which institutions are Catholic?

My suggestion would be that we need to judge these institutions based on the teachings of the Church. For example, if you compare the teachings found in the Catechism of the Catholic Church to the practices of Georgetown University, you can clearly see (it would be hard not to see) that Georgetown University is not Catholic in any meaningful sense.

Friday, January 14, 2011

Cooperation and Structures of Sin

Formal vs Material Cooperation.

Structures of sin in society. Creating and sustaining a structure of sin.

What does it take to create and sustain a structure of sin? How do we cooperate with structures of sin? Why has abortion been legal in the United States for 38 years? Are we cooperating with this structure of sin by simply going about our lives and not starting a revolution?

From the Catechism of the Catholic Church:
1869 Thus sin makes men accomplices of one another and causes concupiscence, violence, and injustice to reign among them. Sins give rise to social situations and institutions that are contrary to the divine goodness. "Structures of sin" are the expression and effect of personal sins. They lead their victims to do evil in their turn. In an analogous sense, they constitute a "social sin."144