Monday, November 24, 2008

Conflicts Within

We're having some major snow today (Monday) and I'm very glad my book, Unto Others, is printed and safely on the shelves of three local stores. Thursday is Thanksgiving and I hope all of you have a safe and blessed holiday. We are not going anywhere--I need some catch-up time from all the work I've been doing to finish, print and place my book. Then maybe we'll run down to Ohio in a few weeks to make a Thanksgiving-Christmas visit with my mother.

I am unfortunately reading about tensions between Catholics which have been flaring since the election of Barack Obama. Many Bishops are becoming more vocal about Obama's record on abortion, yet many Catholics voted for him. There are also tensions involved in the debates about Evolution vs. Intelligent Design Theories. Several of the major players are Catholic. Michael Behe and Kenneth Miller testified against each other in the trial in Dover, Pennsylvania. Behe believes that life is too complex to have come about in the small, naturalistic steps which neo-Darwinism claims. Miller believes nature's forces after the Big Bang are sufficient to have brought about life, even though it's "OK" if God made prior design for a universe which supports this life.

Arguments have deeper associations which cause us to make our stands. The bishops, of course, believe the embryo is a living human and therefore in need of legal protection as any human is. Some apparently do not see it that way, and are affected instead by the inhumanity of poverty and oppression. In the evolutionary debate, Miller fears we will stop trying to understand biology if we say, "God made it," whereas ID advocates say the evolutionists are not willing to correctly evaluate all the facts.

My book, Unto Others, does not address either abortion or evolution. But it does start with conflict within the Catholic Church. There are more areas of conflict with which we must grapple. Yet Paul in various places calls us to get along together. Perhaps at this time of year, it is good to recall the things for which we can be Thankful, which are many. Then, in prayer and joy of the Christmas season and the promise of a new year, we can work toward unity and love.

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