Wednesday, May 23, 2007

Religion vs. "spirituality"

Rich at Ten Reasons had a great post with a quote from Archbisop Charles Chaput from Denver. Archbishop Chaput is an eloquent defender of the Church. Pray for more like him.

The quote is fairly short, so I've just re-printed the part that Rich did. If you haven't checked out his blog, do so. You'll find it much more fruitful than what I have here.

Religion vs. "spirituality"
Denver archbishop Charles J. Chaput
on a key distinction:

You know, there’s a reason why "spirituality" is so popular in the United States today and religion is so criticized. Private spirituality can be quite satisfying. But it can also become a designer experience. In fact, the word spirituality can mean just about anything a person wants it to mean. It’s private, it’s personal, and, ultimately, it doesn’t place any more demands on the individual than what he or she wants.

Religion is a very different creature. The word religion comes from the Latin word religare—to bind. Religious believers bind themselves to a set of beliefs. They submit themselves to a community of faith with shared convictions and hopes. A community of believers has a common history. It also has a shared purpose and future that are much bigger than any political authority. And that has implications. Individuals pose no threat to any state. They can be lied to, bullied, arrested, or killed. But communities of faith do pose a threat. Religious witness does have power, and communities of faith are much harder to silence or kill.

Monday, May 21, 2007

Modesty question

An article on the Catholic Dads blog brought up something that's been bothering me lately:

When did "dressed up" for girls and women become equated with cleavage? It seems to have become a pre-requisite for going out, even to Church. I go to Church to pray, not to see a complete side-view of some 17 year old's breast, which is what I saw a couple of weeks ago. Clothes are too tight, too short, too revealing, and the parents condone it. I'm on the Board of Education for our parish and have brought this up with the principal - about school uniforms being too tight, etc. She just said it's a losing battle with the parents, that they meet the letter of the law and don't want to hear it. What a shame.

That's why I think the Catholic Dads movement is so important. Our daughters need to hear from us about what message that sends. They need to ask themselves if that's really the attention they want. And if so, why?