Tuesday, October 21, 2008

An Original Catholic Political Culture

From Paper Clippings by Crossroads.
It is appalling that an intelligent Catholic layman like E.J. Dionne accepts as a the normal state of affairs that US catholics should be divided "conservative" and "progressive" groups. It is a sad truth that US Catholics think of themselves according to such external political categories. But do they realize this a symptom of complete cultural failure on their part? If you let the secular culture set the terms of the debate to the point that you end up dividing the Church exactly along the same political lines as the rest of society, that means you have not done your homework in developing an original Catholic political culture. It is a shame, really.

Let's begin.


Dcn Scott Dodge said...

So, what is our positive hypothesis as regards the church?

I propose what St. Paul expresses:

"For all of you who were baptized into Christ have clothed yourselves with Christ. There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither slave nor free person, there is not male and female; for you are all one in Christ Jesus" (Gal. 3,27-28).

This unity is at the basis of Christian culture, writing, art, music, etc. It is of course refracted through the prism of genuine human experience, which includes brokenness.

Dcn Scott Dodge said...

It is interesting to compare what Dionne writes with what Timothy Radcliffe, who also rejects labels imported from secular politics, has written.
Overcoming discord in the church

In looking at the reality, the mystery of the church we can sense different emphases. Compare CL to Sant'Egidio; First Things to Commonweal; Communio to Concilium; Balthasar to Rahner, etc.

JACK said...

Not entirely on point, but related, here's some of my most recent thoughts on an aspect of the election: http://jackblogs.typepad.com/integrity/2008/10/on-building-a-catholic-political-culture.html