St. Augustine Augustine was a Christian from birth. However, in his youth and adolescence, he lived a life of sensual immorality as well as a high level of rationality. He reasoned powerfully, but he could… More
This (what is below) is it. Pay attention. Glance back at “Ecclesia in America” when JP II called for it after the Synod of 1998 [following the collapse of Communism in 1989]. It is all about Aparecida of 2007 and the impetus of retirement of Benedict XVI who saw it clearly, extolled it and quickly left the papacy knowing it to be true. Vatican II is the true Liberation theology and the CDF gave it teeth in the second document on “Christian Freedom and Liberation” (with Ratzinger as its head) which is a succinct Magna Charta of the Church of the future. I would also throw in that it is all Opus Dei in its call to universal sanctity through secular work and the family. It is amply developed in Austen Ivereigh’s “The Reformer Pope” who refers to the Uruguan philosopher Albert Methol Ferre who had a deep and far seeing vision for the future of the Church beginning in the Cono Sur of South America and spreading world wide. A most worthwhile read.
|Hispanics chart pastoral direction|
|by Soli Salgado|
|La Iglesia Hispana: Hispanic Catholics are organizing the largest evangelization effort the U.S. church has yet to see, the V Encuentro — a four-year conversation beginning at the parish level and ending on a national stage in 2018. The process is meant to gauge pastoral realities within Hispanic communities while inspiring new leaders among youth.|
|Process asks participants to analyze their own realities|
|by Soli Salgado|
|La Iglesia Hispana: The V Encuentro, a national gathering, is slated for September 2018 in Dallas. But it’s the four years leading up to the event that are of particular consequence.|
Holy Mass is the supreme action of the created universe. The same “I” on the Cross is the same “I” celebrating each Mass, and the same “I” throning at the right hand of the Father. Our destiny, by living this “I” – action in the street and home is to become this “I.”
I want to offer the Mass as the supreme ontological center of the created cosmos because it is the Creator Himself – Incarnate Christ – acting in time and space As Self-Gift in ordinary life [Like Tolkien’s Shire]. It is the Quid Divinum – the action – that is given to us to transform us into Himself on the occasion of each free secular act.
Here is another meditation about purity and the self-gift
I’ve got several podcasts to put on, but I need someone to show me. It’s arranging schedules. Thanks for your patience, but I’ll be on soon. Fr. Bob
Fighting for the ‘Soul of France,’ More Towns Ban a Bathing Suit: The Burkini
By ALISSA J. RUBIN AUG. 17, 2016
A Muslim woman on Wednesday wore a burkini, a swimsuit that leaves only the face, hands and feet exposed, on a beach in Marseille, France. CreditReuters
PARIS — The debate is now so heated in France that one could be forgiven for assuming that the burkini — the full-body bathing suit worn by some Muslim women — had invaded French beaches. Five towns have banned them. Three more are in the process of doing so. Prime Minister Manuel Valls supported the prohibitions on Wednesday, calling the garment part of “the enslavement of women.”
In fact it would be challenging to spot a burkini on most French beaches, and even some of the mayors considering the bans admit to never having seen one.
But with a presidential election approaching next year, and the nation palpably on edge after a series of terrorist attacks — including 85 people killed this summer along the French Riviera — the burkini has become a new dividing line in France’s increasingly fraught relationship with its Muslim population, Europe’s largest.
That there is no clear definition of what qualifies as a burkini, and that Muslim women have complained of being singled out on beaches even when covered by other kinds of garments, has raised the question of whether the increasing number of bans are meant to signal France’s demand for conformity with its non-Muslim majority or are genuinely part of France’s culture of laïcité, or secularism in public life.
That debate is a continuation of deep-seated discomfort in France with Muslim women’s dress that has long defied simple categories of left and right, leaving Mr. Valls, a Socialist, sounding a lot like the presidential hopeful for the center-right, Nicolas Sarkozy, or for that matter, Marine Le Pen, the leader of the extreme-right National Front.
“This is the soul of France that is in question,” Ms. Le Pen wrote in a blog post that strongly supported the burkini ban. “France does not lock away a woman’s body, France does not hide half of its population under the fallacious and hateful pretext that the other half fears it will be tempted.”
“The French beaches are those of Bardot and Vadim,” she said, referring to the movie star Brigitte Bardot and Roger Vadim, a screenwriter known for his sensual movies, not those of “Belphegor,” she added, referring to a television serial about a lugubrious ghost in a long cape that haunted the Louvre Museum.
Mr. Valls, in an interview published Wednesday in La Provence, the daily newspaper in Marseille, called the burkini part of a “political project” to enslave women.
Laurence Rossignol, a feminist and the Socialist minister for families, children and women’s rights, called the burkini “profoundly archaic” and “not just a new kind of bathing attire,” but a garment with a deeper meaning. “That meaning is to hide, to conceal the women’s bodies and the position it accords to women is a position that I fight against,” she said in a television interview.
There is little doubt that politics, cultural prejudices and latent fear after a terrible season of terrorism in France have newly inflamed the debate.
The mayors who have enacted bans justify them with vague rationales that include maintaining public order and hygiene, “good morals” and laïcité.
Prime Minister Manuel Valls of France on Wednesday supported the prohibitions on burkinis, calling the garment part of “the enslavement of women.” CreditLionel Bonaventure/Agence
The reality is far less clear, and in fact the presence of burkinis could be taken as a sign that at least some French Muslims have a relatively liberal stance, said Marwan Muhammad, the executive director of the Center Against Islamophobia in France. In conservative Muslim countries, women would never go to a beach with men, much less go swimming, since even in the burkini the wet cloth sticks to a woman’s body, outlining her curves.
“This is a good news in a way because it means Muslim women who didn’t used to enjoy that day at the beach or at the pool are now taking part, they are socializing,” he said.
The Center Against Islamophobia challenged the ban in Cannes, and lost, but is appealing that decision. Meanwhile, the Council of State, which determines whether such bans meet French legal requirements, is reviewing the local ordinances and is expected to rule on Thursday.
However, the more important and dangerous point, Mr. Muhammad said, is that there is no legal definition of the burkini. Typically many Muslim women, who do not want to spend 40 to 125 euros for a burkini, wear a T-shirt and long pants. Some even take off their hijab, others put on a bathing cap.
He said that six Muslim women who complained to his center in the past week were asked to leave public beaches even though they were not wearing burkinis.
“One was wearing a long-sleeve T-shirt and pants with a head scarf, and another was wearing an actual competition bathing suit, like they wear in the Olympics, and a bathing cap, and she was taken off the beach,” Mr. Muhammad said.
However, he added, “her mother was wearing the hijab and was enjoying a picnic on the beach,” and the fact that she was Muslim and wearing a bathing cap was enough to cause local officials to ask her to leave.
In Cannes, where a ban on the burkini was enacted last week, at least six of 10 women who complained to a local Muslim association were simply going into the sea with their bodies covered. Violators of the ban are asked to leave the beach and can be fined 38 euros, or about $42.
On Saturday, brawls broke out at a beach in Corsica after some beachgoers began taking photographs of Muslim women wearing burkinis, prompting the mayor of the town of Sisco to ban the full-body bathing suits.
The slippery slope of such restrictions first came into view with a law in 2004 that banned the wearing of overt religious symbols in public primary and secondary schools. It included wearing the Jewish kippa, large crosses and the hijab, but affected disproportionately those wearing the hijab because there are few parochial schools for Muslims, so they have no choice but to go to state schools.
But in colleges, the hijab and other signs of religious faith are acceptable, and there is no law against them in daily life unless a person works for the French government, where all signs of religious practice are prohibited.
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In 2010, the Parliament approved a law banning in public any clothing that hides the face. While worded generally, the debate focused on the full-face veil, sometimes called the burqa. The reason given was public safety.
More recently politicians have begun to compete in further regulating clothing worn by Muslim women. One of the candidates for the nomination of the right-leaning Republican party, Mr. Sarkozy, has called for banning the hijab also in university settings.
“Islamophobia is very emotional, there’s not only a religious element, there is a sexist element and a racist element and with the burkini there’s a real need to control women’s bodies,” Mr. Muhammad said.
One mayor, describing a ban he was about to enact in a town in the north of France, was unable to say exactly why it was so necessary.
Olivier Majewicz, a Socialist mayor in Oye-Plage on the English Channel, said he was on the beach on Sunday speaking to lifeguards, “when I saw a woman dressed in black from head to toe; she was wearing a burqa and looking out towards the ocean.”
The woman’s garb took him by surprise, Mr. Majewicz said, adding that she was not doing anything disturbing. “It was a beautiful, warm, sunny day,” he said.
“We are in a small town and the beach is a small, family friendly place,” he continued. “It’s also a bit wild, close to nature.” The woman’s attire, he said, did not correspond with “what one normally expects from a beachgoer.”
He has never seen a burkini in Oye-Plage and neither had the mayor of Le Touquet, another English Channel town, seen one there, but both are planning bans.
Further complicating matters is the deeply held belief that government should not be tainted by religion, an idea referred to as laïcité, a concept for which there is no English translation. It dates from the bitter wars here between Protestants and Catholics and the later efforts by many to curtail the powers of the Catholic Church, which had long been allied with the monarchy and conservative political forces in France.
Although politicians often cite laïcité as a reason for prohibiting Muslim and other religious attire, in fact that is a misconception, said Nicolas Cadène, the spokesman for the government’s Observatory on Laïcité.
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“During crises, there are crises of passion, of looking to your own experiences, of retreating, of rising fear,” he said. “One must not overreach in such a climate. We need to calm down the situation.”
“One should not exploit laïcité for partisan ends and to stigmatize people,” he added.