22 October 2007

Cardinal Pell, Again

An example of why the Cardinal Pell might be just what Westminster needs. (By the way, I'm in trouble now for being on the computer instead of packing a suitcase.)

The good Cardinal has published a book "God and Caesar: Selected Essays on Religion, Politics, and Society". The Amazon blurb reads as follows:

"Many of the great questions of our day once again revolve around religion. The secular era of the past two centuries is ending in incomprehension and denial, overwhelmed by the cultural uncertainty and political conflict that have dominated the first years of the new millennium. In the face of developments such as the fall in birth rates and the rise of neo-paganism, secularism has little to say. What does remain in the United States and Europe is a vociferous hostility to religion, especially to the role it plays in public life.

The ensuing conflict continues to play itself out in politics, culture, science and the universities. New phenomena such as multiculturalism and significant Muslim minorities have both arisen in the West. But the focus of suspicion has remained squarely on Christianity and its relationship to democracy, human rights, and secular society.

Cardinal George Pell, one of the Catholic Church's leading spokesmen, has played a significant part in this drama. God and Caesar brings together a selection of his writings on Christianity, politics, and society from the last ten years. Drawing on a deep knowledge of history and human affairs, the essays pinpoint the key issues facing Christians and non-believers in determining the future of modern democratic life.

Cardinal Pell considers questions such as: Is democracy only secular? What role can the Catholic Church and its moral vision play, and have they played, in strengthening democracy? How does "religious capital" strengthen political society? What is the bishop's critical role in building a culture of life? And why is belief in God important to the health of a democratic society?
Christ's instructions to "render unto Caesar the things that are Caesar's, and unto God the things that are God's" (Matthew 22:21) remain the starting point for any reflections on Christianity and political life. God and Caesar is an indispensable text that helps illuminate what Christ's teaching means today."

I liked a comment on one of the essays:

"In one essay which was delivered as a talk to the Linicare Conference in the UK in 2000, under the title "The Role of the Bishop in Promoting the Gospel of Life", the Cardinal warns that the Catholic Church would not grow unless the full teaching of the Church on life issues was promoted. "Tactical silence", as practised by many bishops, would in fact stifle growth, he suggested.

Cardinal George Pell, said a “common heresy of our times” is believing that Catholics can accept and practice contraception, using the “primacy of conscience” as a justification.Taking a metaphor from Oxford professor Felipe Fernandez-Armesto, the Cardinal called this belief that has spread among Catholics the “Donald Duck heresy,” referring to the Disney character who "knows it all", and "has an unshakeable conviction of self-righteousness." The self-indulgent duck, explains Pell is well-meaning but "his activity is often disastrous for himself and others." "

More of Ttony's children's inheritance being converted into book capital.


Mac McLernon said...

Oh wow. I must get my paws on that book... pay day!

In the meantime, have a good holiday!

John said...

I've just come from reading Joe Kelly supporting Bishop Roche on TotalCatholic. This, in the face of Fr. Zulsdorf, Fr. Blake , Fr. Finigan and Damian Thompson!
Have a good holiday!

WhiteStoneNameSeeker said...

Now that looks like a book worth reading.
I have long cinsidered that only by improving family life- that is parents being parents to their children; being there for them, can we have a change in society that will mean a less contraception and abortion.

Democracy without subsidiarity is surely not democracy at all.