Posts Tagged ‘god’
I’m Catholic. In America, it sometimes seems more trouble than it’s worth. Fortunately, for all the routine vilification the Church receives, as jokes at her expense are a touchstone of popular culture, it seems the critics can’t get their stories straight.
First and foremost, the Church is, apparently, a dinosaur that cannot change with the times. On abortion, gay rights and masturbation, the Church is a relic. True to form, the second most popular criticism is another
After a friend expressed interest in reading up on the Apocrypha — the books of the Catholic Bible deemed deuterocanonical and are not found in the Protestant editions — I found myself searching on Google for the terms “free bible apocrypha Catholic.” I didn’t find any free Bibles complete with both Maccabees and a few more chapters of Daniel, but I did find on both sides of the Apocrypha debate, quite a lot of hatred.
Due to my poor selection of search terms, a plethora of inflammatory Web sites popped up in my browser, Web sites not content to refer to the Church without using quotes.
The Roman Catholic ‘Church’ in effect accepts 12 of the apocryphal books as canonical (omitting I & II Esdras and the Prayer of Manassah from the above list.) Because of this the Roman Catholic ‘Church’ speaks of the Apocrypha as “deutero-canonical” books, and in turn labels as apocrypha what we may term “pseudoepigraphical” books.”
Almost everywhere, it seemed, the Church is belittled and mocked. The Church includes the Apocrypha in its Bible, and it cannot be a true Church, claims these garish Web sites. The Church must be discredited, they say, for putting words in God’s mouth, specifically:
While claiming to be the preserver of God’s word the Catholic Church has corrupted God’s word by adding books to the Bible that have no place in it.
To paraphrase, the second claim is that the Catholic Church is not afraid to contradict, interpret and change the Word of God as it suits her. To think, I was almost convinced that the Church is an unchanging relic way behind the times, only now to hear that she is actively working against the Word of God with all due haste, as a sort of Whore of Babylon.
Is the Church the symbol of stogy tradition, or does she flout tradition as the anti-Apocryphites believe?
Even this minor contradiction is enough to convince me all the more that the Roman Catholic Church has far more credibility than these most militant Protestant denominations who seek to discredit her. It isn’t much of an observation to note that the anti-Catholic attacks made here by Christians in the states aren’t very Christian in nature, given that they’re attacks and all.
Whatever the values advanced by the Bible, there will always be these few who nonetheless number all too many. Whatever the costs, they will always believe that it’s more worth their time to disparage the Catholics than to love these neighbors.
I’ve decided that my room isn’t big enough for a bed.
At about 8 feet by 10 feet, I can just barely fit my two desks, a couch and some random computer chair, but I can’t comfortably squeeze in a mattress, box spring and bed frame. Therefore, I’ve decided to live without one.
Thanks, Japan, for making this decision possible. I figured that because your largest metropolitan area has an average of almost 5,800 residents crammed in every square kilometer, you know a little something about space management. For readers who need a more allegorical comparison, that’s like cramming the population of the city of Los Angeles into the city limits of San Francisco. Tight fit.
So instead of taking that extra-long twin my parents want out of their house and stashing it somewhere in my room, I pull out a cheap, blue, child-sized futon at night. I sleep on that, in the style of all those really crowded countries across the Pacific.
It’s mighty comfortable, even ignoring that it lays right on the floor and all. I like my mattresses firm. The floor is pretty firm.
I have no reason to switch back in the near future, especially considering the health benefits of a firm mattress for my sort of sleeper.
I’m thinking that this is a pretty smart move, at the very least because not having to worry about a permanent fixture in the middle of my room really opens up my place.
When I think about it, though, this isn’t a decision between mattress and futon. The last guy with this room had no problem with his bed the way it was, and he had a mighty fine bed. No, this was a decision between one mattress and two or three large, wooden bookcases.
Even after recognizing that this is the real reason I’m going without a West-style bed, I’d choose bookcases any day of the week. Nothing makes me feel more at home than multiple full bookshelves. I’d like to get back to that.
Of course, it’s a good thing I’m only sleeping Japanese and not living it. If I were living Japanese, I wouldn’t be able to afford an apartment large enough to fit either my mattress or the behemoth-sized oak shelving coming my way.
In other words, God bless America.
Monday’s lesson went like gangbusters.
In case you don’t know what we’re talking about, it’s this lesson.
Students read aloud comments from CNN which ostensibly reacted to the Rev. Jeremiah Wright’s “God Damn America” sermon and what most-famous-parishioner and Democratic presidential candidate Sen. Barack Obama should do about him. Then, they watch the sermon and argue amongst themselves.
The first period loved it. Half of the class thought Wright’s phrasing was outrageous and should not be tolerated under any circumstances. The other half thought that it was reasonable, given the context. There was arguing even before we got to the comments read aloud.
Once the comments were read aloud, students were required to write their response to that comment on a sheet of binder paper, noting how effective and how fair that comment was.
Second period was more sedate, but most of the really high performing kids were absent. Fortunately, even though there wasn’t much talking or arguing — we finished a two-hour block with half an hour to spare, while the first period went into the passing period — their written responses were just as insightful as the first period.
Next time, I’ll get students to volunteer to read the comments aloud. Those who were handed the comments read them grudgingly and unenthusiastically — hardly the effect for which I had hoped.
Next up: a timeline of the Civil Rights movement since the Dred Scott decision. Naturally, we’ll bookend this by listening to Sen. Obama’s well-spoken response to the criticism of the Rev. Wright.
I expect nothing but good things from this class this week.
Moral of the story? If you, the history teacher, has trouble finding standardized content relevant to students’ everyday lives, read a newspaper once a month. You’ll find something.