I'm linking up with This Ain't the Lyceum to bring you seven quick takes from my world this week.
I'm devastated by the shootings in Orlando this week. What's more, I'm also concerned by the reaction I've seen. I have lots of gay friends, even a few who live in Orlando (they are okay). My more liberal and/or gay friends in general have said that Christians are responsible for this shooting, despite the fact that the shooter was Muslim. I have seen memes and posts that equate lack of support for gay marriage or a lack of support for gun control with the murder itself of gay people, posts that have said that straight people are responsible for creating this atmosphere. I am sad that these deaths are being politicized over gun control and bathroom laws, over labels of hate crime versus terrorist. No one deserves to die in that way. Our religion says to love another, and thou shalt not kill. I am trying to understand where they are coming from. It is no coincidence that the majority of the countries in which you can be killed simply for being homosexual are Islamic countries. By the same token, I don't appreciate the Catholic bishop who basically fed into this mindset by indicting Catholics as well or the ACLU for somehow blaming a different religion than that of the shooter for his actions. We cannot even discuss anymore rationally. We cannot disagree without it being seen as "hate" or irrational fear (the definition of "phobia"). Due to the sad divisions with Christianity, those who also hold to the label of "Christian" might propagate hateful ideas, and we are all indicted. Despite the fact that many cry "not all Muslims" are terrorists, it seems that the battle cry that "not all Christians" are bigoted spewers of hate, the logic does not seem to apply equally. I understand that this specific attack can be seen as a hate crime aimed at the LGBT community. That is wrong. I also think there is room for both/and rather than either/or. It can be terror and hate. Sadly, I don't see how the label matters. I am listening, trying not to wound further my friends who are directly hurt by this. I understand how this attack seems like a threat to all, and I don't want to minimize that.
Yet, I foresee a dark future for anyone who holds to true Catholic teaching as it relates to marriage, sexuality, the human person, etc. In the meantime,
"May the souls of these victims in Orlando, and the souls of all the faithful departed,
through the mercy of God, rest in peace. Amen."
Quite related to number 1, Joseph Sciambra provides a nice Catholic response to this tragedy as an ex-gay man. He is much more qualified than I to have an opinion about the best approach. (This post on his blog was also featured on Lifesite news.) He also was interviewed in a wonderful podcast, which you can catch here. I believe this is the defining issue of our time: sexual identity. It's not abortion, the death penalty, divorce and remarriage, it's sexual identity. The Church quite simply has not done a good job of providing the truth with clarity, and not just that but providing healing. If we view this as a wound, not just a sin, then we need to help people have alternatives. We provide healing retreats from those involved in abortion, why not provide healing retreats from those who have had unwanted same-sex attraction? There is much to be done, and as a married straight woman, I have no idea what I am to do, I just know we have got to respond better as a Church. Learning about natural law and Theology of the Body was life-changing for me. It changed my mind and my behavior. It is likely the reason I am still Catholic. If I had not understood these issues on a deep level, I would possibly have left the Church over them, before having a re-conversion of sorts. Pray, pray, pray for our world and our Church.
It's not every day that you get to hear one of your favorite authors speak. This week, Dawn Eden gave a talk about her book Remembering God's Mercy that was I able to attend in person. It was great. I hope I didn't act like too much of a dork when I met her, since I was saint*-struck. Again, it's the best book I've read this year, and I read about one book per week of non-fiction Catholic theology or spirituality books such as this. I highly recommend for anyone struggling with past pain or painful memories.
(*Catholic equivalent of star-struck upon meeting a future saint)
~4~They're making a documentary about Misophonia! Here's a link to the trailer. Very depressing preview, I have to say. I'm not sure I want to watch it, but the fact that it exists makes me feel less psycho. Don't forget, it's thought that Therese of Liseaux had this too.
On a much-needed lighter note, there is now such a profession as a water sommelier. That's right - an expert in how different waters taste, impact your meals, or when enjoyed alone. All you have to do is visit a bar in Los Angeles to consult a water menu, cultivated by the water sommelier.
I'm behind the times, since we don't have cable (or even the free channels). But, we watched a cute movie this week. It promoted nice family values, even though there were tear-jerking moments, it was overall a happy, sweet story. I recommend for kids and parents alike, The Good Dinosaur.
One of my favorite depictions of the Blessed Mother - Madonna of the Lilies by Bouguereau.
Pray for us, O Holy Mother of God!