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Weigel digs Lickona and Judge

Congrats to Matthew Lickona and Mark Gavreau Judge for being touted by George Weigel in his most recent column!

Having survived the silly season, Matthew Lickona and Mark Judge have built integral, exciting Catholic lives despite the collapse of intact Catholic culture in the United States. Growing up in the intensely Catholic culture of Bavaria, a more famous Catholic apologist, Joseph Ratzinger, discovered that the Catholic Church is a wonderful thing, a treasure-house of insights and experiences to be savored and explored, reflected upon and argued over. Amidst the confusions of post-modern America, Lickona and Judge have discovered what Benedict XVI intuited as a boy: that the Church is everyday life and soaring speculation, liturgy and art and music, all at the same time. Learning the connections is a lifelong project, full of adventure and beauty.

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James Freeman

posted August 11, 2005 at 2:12 am

As a convert, I didn’t have to overcome a disintegrating Catholic culture and educational system in order to stumble into faith. I had to overcome other things, but at least they weren’t silliness and lies disguising themselves as The Truth . . . If You MUST Believe in That Sort of Thing (c) 1970, Sister Stretchpants Ministries.
To me, the glory of Catholicism is that it sees Jesus as big enough to hang on the cross, to walk with us through our daily crucifixions, and we as fallen enough that we need to see Jesus hanging on the cross. Being that we put Him there.
Bluntly — and my friends and spouse keep reminding me I’m nothing if not blunt — Christian denominations that can’t handle the crucifix or “Pick up your cross and follow Me” have nothing to say to me. Nothing.
Now if only Catholics who wish their Church were more “relevant” could realize that they’ve had all the “relevance” they needed (or could handle) right under their noses for the last 2,000 years.

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posted August 11, 2005 at 8:48 am

Indeed. Pope Benedict has often spoken of the warm, colorful and human Catholic culture in which he grew up. Catholic Bavaria, with its magnificent Benedictine monasteries, its Baroque architecture and beautiful landscapes are a treasure.
Life is much more challenging these days for Catholics, converts or cradle. I sympathize with James Freeman’s comments. Converts are somewhat fortunate in that some, at least, don’t have to unlearn some of the nonsense that has been passed on in Catholic academic and religious circles over the last few decades.
Lickona and Judge are to be commended for taking responsibility for their own faith life and nuturing it. One simply cannot always leave it up to the “professionals” these days.

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Gerard E.

posted August 11, 2005 at 9:04 am

Ah, the professionals cited accurately by Christine. See above post about Msgr. Clark and his alleged indiscretions (cue throat-clearing sound) with Mrs. DeFilippo. Or that we better not stay on the defensive when an orthodox cleric is caught with his mitt in the ol’cookie jar. Consistency and all.
Christine’s wider point is well-taken. With apologies to the fine, orthodox clergy in and outside St. Blog’s, we laypersons, with real lives and careers, are largely on our own when it comes to spiritual matters. Particularly those who have not found The Right Person For Marriage (whoever that might be.) Kudos to Matt and Mark for deprogramming themselves to become solid spiritual citizens. More kudos to the Holy Spirit for leading them into these directions.
(Hot Tubs??????)

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posted August 11, 2005 at 9:21 am

Gerard, aside from the ethical questions involved, my eyebrows flew to the ceiling when I read about the good Monsignor’s $2 million vacation home. $2 million?????? I lived on Long Island for a short period of time when I was still single and I know New York is expensive but, gee whiz!!
Ah yes, those “professionals.”
I’m also cued in on your comment about the “Right Person For Marriage.” One of the crosses I’ve been given to bear is a husband whom I love dearly but because of his exposure to a very inauthentic “cultural Catholicism” (and there is also a very HEALTHY form — I experienced it living in Europe) and simply terrible childhood formation we don’t, at this point in time, share the faith I’ve come to love so much. But I can’t blame him. When we met the last thing on my mind was spiritual matters.
Oh well, St. Paul does admonish wives who believe to perservere with husband’s who choose to live outside of the Church — the Holy Spirit can do marvelous things over a lifetime.

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posted August 11, 2005 at 9:56 am

I’ve heard that Monsignor inherited the Hampton’s house from a family member many years ago. If that’s correct, it would certainly be different from the Rector of St. Pat’s going out and buying a $2 million home.

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Rich Leonardi

posted August 11, 2005 at 10:26 am

I can’t help but think John Paul II pulled a “Reagan” with the release of the Catechism of the Catholic Church, speaking over the heads of the professionals to the truth-starved faithful.
If I had to point to one event that’s had the greatest impact on the renaissance of orthodoxy, it’s that.
In one fell swoop, it ended the professionals’ unchecked ability to obfuscate, shade and color what the Church teaches.
Which is why I’m so excited about the Compendium …

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posted August 11, 2005 at 10:37 am

Yes, re Clark’s house – the Post story to which I linked above said he’d had it for 46 years..

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posted August 11, 2005 at 10:51 am

I didn’t read the Post article but if it is the case that Monsignor Clark inherited the home that is, of course, an entirely different cone odd.
All of the married Lutheran pastors I grew up with generally lived under pretty modest circumstances, since few of them who pastored congregations made what I would call spectacular salaries.

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posted August 11, 2005 at 10:53 am

Entirely different “cone odd????” Those laser beams floating around in my neighborhood have gotten to me again. What I meant to say was an entirely different “context.”

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posted August 11, 2005 at 11:10 am

It’s a good thing for us that the Church is more than just our sinful part of it, and that God is good and merciful.

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