Archive for December, 2014

Intrinsic Evils and Inherent Goods

In Shakespeare’s Macbeth, the Weird Sisters, the witches who deceive and betray Macbeth, utter these fatal words at the beginning of the play: “Fair is foul, and foul is fair.” They blur the natural, logical distinctions between things as black and white blend into gray—the appearance of the weather when Macbeth returns home victorious from battle in the midst of thunder and lightning. The witches tempt Macbeth to judge on the basis of the...

God Saved the World Through a Baby

Within the octave of Christmas, we observe the Feast of the Holy Family of Jesus, Mary, and Joseph. Saint John Paul II said in his 1994 Letter to Families (Gratissimam Sane), “To the family is entrusted the task of striving, first and foremost, to unleash the forces of good, the source of which is found in Christ the Redeemer of man. Every family unit needs to make these forces their own so that…the...

Love Descending

Aristotle believed in God. This is to his credit as a great philosopher. What he did not believe was that God could be concerned about us lowly human beings. It made sense, in a way, since there is, as St. Thomas would state many years later, an infinite distance between God and his creatures. God is eternal; human beings are made out of nothing. For Aristotle, love moved the world, but it was...

The Evil of Adoption in Same-Sex Marriages

One of the insidious rationalizations used to permit same-sex married couples to adopt children argues that life in a home, rather than an institution, serves the best interests of orphans. While the adopted child in these situations may enjoy a quality of life that rescues him from poverty and homelessness and receive the benefits of proper food, housing, education and medical care, he does not experience a normal, natural family life. If the child...

Christmas and the View from Eternity

Perhaps the two most beloved Christmas stories that we see every year on television are Charles Dickens’ A Christmas Carol and Frank Capra’s It’s A Wonderful Life. The former involves a man from Hell, Jacob Marley, who shows Ebenezer Scrooge the ruinous future he is preparing for himself and for others. The latter involves an angel from heaven, Clarence Odbody, who shows George Bailey what a wonderful life he has had. In both...

Stewards of the Body: End of Life Care

St. John Paul II writes in Evangelium Vitae about man’s responsibility over life: “With regard to things, but even more with regard to life, man is not the absolute master and final judge, but rather-and this is where his incomparable greatness lies-he is the “minister of God’s plan” (no. 52). But how is one to minister when the...

The Miracle of the Incarnation: God’s Personal Relationships

The Christmas season celebrates the Christian miracle of the Incarnation, almighty God becoming lowly man and eternal God assuming a mortal human nature. The God of power and might enters the world in the form of weakness as a helpless, dependent baby. The Lord who lives in the society of the Blessed Trinity where love circulates between Father, Son, and Holy Spirit in the never-ending giving and receiving of love enters into a humble...

The Fight for End-Of-Life Care: Vitalism vs. Catholicism

In many respects, when St. John Paul II wrote Evangelium Vitae it helped the pro-life movement move forward on matters of public policy. It has served as a guide on many incremental approaches dealing with the subject of abortion. However, what does it have to say on matters of public policy that deal with end-of-life issues? Again, this ground-breaking document has laid a path for the pro-life movement.

Yet, what if the movement is...