wDe Virtutibus
The goal of a virtuous life is to become like God.
-St. Gregory of Nyssa; CCC 1803

De Virtutibus; or, Kevin's Kasuist Korner; or, Miller's Moral Musings.

"Why 'De Virtutibus'?"



wLinks, resources:
Worth browsing ...

Balthasar: a Sketch
Book TV.org
Center for Life Principles
Christian Classics Ethereal Library
Coalition of Americans for Research Ethics
Communio
Dominicans
Franciscan University of Steubenville
IntraText Digital Library
John Paul II Institute for Studies on Marriage and Family
Junkscience.com
Christopher Kaczor
Life Issues Institute
Lifeissues.net
Marquette University Institute for Natural Family Planning
National Catholic Bioethics Center
National Right to Life
New Advent
Perseus Digital Library
Priests for Life
Ratzinger Fan Club
The Thomist
USCCB
Vatican

blogs4God

< x ? ChristBlogs # x >

<< # St. Blog's Parish ? >>

Select Catholic and other good blogs

After abortion
Being! Or Nothingness
Catholic Analysis
Catholic and Enjoying It!
Catholic Light
Catholic Ragemonkey
Dappled Things
Dawn Patrol
Disputations
Dyspeptic Mutterings
Envoy Encore
Fructus Ventris
HMS Blog
In Light of the Law
Open Book
Rerum Novarum
SecretAgentMan's Dossier
Sed Contra
Summa Contra Mundum
Thrown Back
Veritas
... and more ...

News and commentary

Catholic News Service
First Things
FOXNews.com
National Catholic Register
National Review Online
Town Hall
Weekly Standard
ZENIT News Agency

Some especially good moral theology reads ...

Aquinas, Summa Theologiae; Ashley & O'Rourke, Health Care Ethics; Cessario, Introduction to Moral Theology; Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, Christian Freedom and Liberation - Ecclesial Vocation of the Theologian - Euthanasia - Pastoral Care of Homosexual Persons - Procured Abortion - Profession of Faith - Questions concerning Sexual Ethics - Respect for Human Life in its Origin and Dignity of Procreation - "Theology of Liberation"; DiNoia, Veritatis Splendor and the Renewal of Moral Theology; Gagnon, Bible and Homosexual Practice; Kaczor, Proportionalism and the Natural Law Tradition; de Lubac, Brief Catechesis on Nature and Grace; Matera, New Testament Ethics; Melina, Sharing in Christ's Virtues; Pieper, Faith, Hope, Love - Four Cardinal Virtues; Pinckaers, Sources of Christian Ethics; Schindler, Heart of the World, Center of the Church; Schürmann, Ratzinger, Balthasar, Principles of Christian Morality; Sokolowski, Moral Action; Steck, Ethical Thought of Hans Urs von Balthasar; Vatican II, Apostolate of the Laity - Church in the Modern World - Priestly Formation - Religious Freedom; Wojtyla/John Paul II, Catholic Universities - Church in America - Dignity and Vocation of Women - Faith and Reason - Human Work - Hundredth Anniversary of Rerum Novarum - Gospel of Life - Letter to Families - Lord and Giver of Life - Lord's Day - Love and Responsibility - Mercy of God - Person and Community - Redeemer of Man - Role of the Christian Family in the Modern World - Social Concern - Splendor of Truth - Theology of the Body

Who is this blogging moralist?


Note. This blog adheres to the Welborn Protocol: All correspondence is bloggable unless it requests otherwise - and to the Shea Protocol: At my sole discretion, uncivil commenters will be banned.



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wSaturday, October 23, 2004


Righteousness

What must our attitude be if we are to be accounted righteous by God - whose opinion is, after all, the one that ultimately matters? Tomorrow's readings might seem to present us with somewhat of a mixed message. On the one hand, St. Paul is convinced that "a crown of righteousness awaits" him. On the other hand, though, Jesus' parable warns "those who were convinced of their own righteousness," with the example of the Pharisee who, unlike the penitent tax collector, did not go home justified. So what distinguishes the former Pharisee Paul's attitude from that of the Pharisee in the parable?

I think the point is something like this. Paul speaks of the righteousness of "all who have longed for the Lord's appearance." His confidence stems not from a presumption that he "stands acquitted" before the Lord, but from his longing for the Lord - a longing not unlike the tax collector's longing for mercy and justification.

"The prayer of the lowly," in the words of Sirach, is what God wants: the prayer of those who are not "convinced of their own righteousness," but convinced of God's righteousness, which includes his cleansing and healing and elevating and transforming mercy not only for the innocent oppressed but even for the repentant sinner - which includes, that is, his desire to share his righteousness with us, if we will accept it as the pure gift that it is.


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"The Church Needs Holy Priests, Says John Paul II," in message to international congress for 1000+.


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"Don't rule out Dolan: He could win U.S. bishops' No. 2 role"


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On, Wisconsin!


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"Theory of Relativity Evidence Found"

My question: To what degree of precision does it have to be proven before we can say, "Yep. Einstein got it right. Now, on to other things"?


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Trial lawyers. Again.

They help put a company out of business in a case I've mentioned before.

They snag $26M in a malpractice case.

Regarding the latter case: Let's assume the jury rightly concluded that there was true malpractice here - not an unavoidable error for which "someone" was nonetheless going to have to pay. I still think that the award in such a case should be limited to expenses. That could include legal expenses, thereby taking care of the problem that otherwise the costs of trying a malpractice case will make lawers unduly reluctant to help plaintiffs. It's especially pernicious that relatives can collect "pain and suffering" damages for someone who has died. It is also especially pernicious that the doctors were penalized for refusing to settle. Pressure to settle possibly winnable cases, due to the costs to the defendants of taking them to court, is one of the things that helps drive up medical costs. The law shouldn't make defending a case even more of a gamble than it is by its nature.

And for any lawyers who want to tell me that maybe high malpractice premiums are at least partly the fault of insurance companies - rather than solely the fault of doctors and/or lawyers - I'll say that that might be true. But $26M awards are hardly going to help. Being a malpractice insurance company doesn't mean you have a money tree growing out behind the office.


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"C-section Babies at Risk for Food Allergies"

Another reason to be concerned about a recent trend.


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"Courting the Gay Vote: What John Kerry really told the Advocate."


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"Patients With Dementia Receive 'Suboptimal' End-of-Life Care"

Sad, but not surprising.

By the way, I suspect that it's also - and perhaps even more often - the case that dementia patients who really do need feeding tubes are less likely to get them.


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"Federal Court Points Way for Abortion Ban: New Facts Must be Backed by New Legislative Effort"

Somehow, I suspect this is wishful thinking, but I suppose it could be worth a shot.


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"The Politics of Suffering"


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The House of Daschle has got to go!


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Another example of why Bush is good for the international community (and Kerry would be a disaster)

Email received:

Dear Colleague,

Today we report on an important panel convened by the Bush administration at the United Nations to tackle maternal mortality in the developing world. The US wants real health care for poor women and their babies, not a "right" to abortion.

Spread the word.

Yours sincerely,

Austin Ruse
President

October 22, 2004
Volume 7, Number 44

US-Sponsored Panel Calls for Focus on Main Causes of Maternal Mortality

At a panel convened Tuesday at the UN, public health experts discussed the failure of UN "reproductive rights" and family planning programs to reduce maternal mortality in the developing world. The panel was convened by the United States to explore alternative programs for maternal health. ... more




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What will the world do about human cloning?

"Statement of the Holy See on Human Cloning addressed to the United Nations: ‘Humanity Needs a Common Basis, a Common Understanding of Humanity’"

"Statement by Archbishop Migliore On Cloning to 6th Committee of U.N. General Assembly: Cloning ‘Concerns the Nature and Existence of Human Life Itself’"

"Human Cloning: the Ongoing Battle: Some Scientists Reject Limitations on Research"


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How should - and how will - Catholics vote and otherwise deal with politicians?

Archbishop Chaput: "Faith and Patriotism"; "Speakout: Silence of the faithful is cowardice"

Priests for Life: National Prayer Campaign, and other resources

Also from Priests for Life, email passed on by a friend:

Distorted Citizenship
Fr. Frank Pavone
National Director, Priests for Life

We seem to have a major problem in the Church in the area of reading comprehension. The problem is most obvious when the reading material asserts the primacy of abortion among issues that voters have to consider in elections.

Statements of the Pope, various Vatican officials, committees and officials of the USCCB, and the entire body of US bishops, all point to abortion as the fundamental human rights issue of our day. Even Cardinal Joseph Bernardin, who during his life was a key spokesperson for the "consistent ethic of life," pointed out repeatedly that the fundamental right is the right to life.

To illustrate how profound the reading comprehension problem is, just take a look at the list of quotes I have added at the end of these remarks. Then determine for yourself whether they are clear or not.

Meanwhile, we have people in various positions within the Church saying that all the issues are equal. Excuse me, but not only does that violate Catholic teaching, it violates common sense. Ask any parent whether, among their daily activities caring for their children, all issues are of equal importance. In fact, you can ask the children themselves. They seem to know the answer better than some Church officials do. I’ve been acquiring a whole file of letters sent out, often from offices of "social ministry" in various dioceses, which state that voters have to consider a wide range of issues. So far, so good. But then these letters say that no issue is more important than another. And that’s where the lack of reading comprehension reveals itself. Either they have never seen the quotes below, or they are deliberately ignoring them. And neither is appropriate for a person who has the responsibility to convey Church teaching.

Two explanations can be offered for why some would distort the teaching. The first is simply loyalty to the Democratic party. The problem has to be faced honestly that the loyalty of some Church ministers to the Democratic Party is deeper than their loyalty to Catholic teaching. There is nothing wrong with belonging to a political party and being loyal to it. But when that party promotes the widespread, daily, legal killing of children, the voice of protest must be heard. Silence is not an option, neither for Democrats, Republicans, or anyone else - most certainly Catholics.

The second explanation for the reading comprehension problem is a legal concern. Unfortunately, the Church has been fed for decades with legal advice which is far more restrictive of the Church’s freedom than the IRS or the FEC has ever been. And this is wrong. Not only are the IRS/FEC restrictions on the Church minimal, but the enforcement policy is even looser. No Church has ever lost its tax exemption by teaching about abortion, or the primacy of the right to life, or the duty of public officials and voters to advance the Culture of Life by voting. No Church has ever lost its tax exemption for doing what it exists to do, namely, convey the teachings of the Church. No Church has ever lost its tax exemption for distributing materials that did not cover a wide-enough range of issues; in fact, no Church has lost its tax exemption for distributing voter guides, period. Despite all this, various Church officials will go into all kinds of contortions to protect their assets from legal problems that they think will arise if the Church says that the right to life is primary among all the issues. Of course, the problem here is that this kind of legal advice, if it were accurate, would prove too much. Statements of the USBishops themselves, like "Living the Gospel of Life" (1998), would constitute illegal activity under such an erroneous framework. The best way to describe the current problem with some of our attorneys is the bumpersticker that says "I Brake for Hallucinations."

The solution to all of this is for all of us, clergy and laity alike, to bear faithful witness to the teachings of the Church, no matter what the political implications may be. Bear witness to the consistent ethic of life, and to that which makes it consistent - the right to life. Proclaim that there are many rights, and proclaim the foundational right. And be sure to keep your reading skills in top shape!

Abortion: The Primary Issue: According to Statements from the Pope and Bishops

Letter to Cardinal McCarrick from the Milwaukee Archdiocese Priests Alliance; coverage in the JS

"Living on a Prayer: Pro-abortion candidates like Kerry face long-term trouble from Catholics."

"Catholics dispute weight of abortion in election"

"The Myth of the Catholic Voter: The media are obsessed with the Catholic vote, the Catholic bishops, and the Catholic influence on the election. Is there any there, there?"


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An interesting Bush campaign commercial


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Voting, the state, and the citizen

"Racism vs. responsibility"

"Stay home; don't vote"

"The Florida Lie: A paranoid urban legend returns."

"The Myth of the Disenfranchised: It’s not the government’s fault if you can’t properly fill out a ballot."

"'Provisional' Democracy: Will Democratic lawyers make voter fraud easier?"


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Kerry (and his political allies) on wars of yesterday and today

"Never Apologize, Never Explain: John Kerry's real record as an antiwar activist."

"Kerry on Zarqawi: Wrong: The Democratic nominee is ignoring the evidence on Zarqawi's activities in Iraq."

"The Levin 'Report': Yesterday Carl Levin released a report on the Iraq-al Qaeda from the Democratic staff of the Senate Armed Services Committee. It is an embarrassment."


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Whither Iraq?

"The Spirit Endures: Iraq's democrats look for support from a democracy."

"Religious Leaders Ahead in Iraq Poll: U.S.-Supported Government Is Losing Ground."


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"Afghanistan Reborn: The epic achievement of the Bush administration--and of America."


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The House of Kim has got to go!™


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With HMS Blog down for a few days,

I'm going to post a few things - mostly links of interest - here so as not to have to choose between leaving them unblogged and having my "to blog" pile grow unmanagable. (I'll note this on HMS when we're back up.)


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