May 19th, 2007

Chi-Rho Seal

Theological Notebook: CNS article on Latin American hierarchy's perspective on cultural challenges

One of the Cardinals most touted as a potential pope – Honduras' Oscar Rodriguez Maradiaga – and others give an interesting, Latin-American cultural assessment of the Church's challenges for the future.

Cardinal: Latin American bishops stress need to adjust pastoral work
By Barbara J. Fraser
Catholic News Service

APARECIDA, Brazil (CNS) -- The changes which have occurred in Latin America in recent years are so profound that they require fundamental changes in the way the church approaches pastoral work, said a cardinal from Honduras.

"We need a pastoral conversion," Cardinal Oscar Rodriguez Maradiaga of Tegucigalpa said. "If these are difficult times, new disciples are needed -- disciples who are able to respond to the difficulty, to resist the cultural storms that we are experiencing."

After listening to presidents from Latin American and Caribbean bishops' conferences describe the problems the church is facing in their countries, Cardinal Rodriguez told reporters, "The question is how to respond to the new situations in Latin America."

That will be the key issue for bishops participating in the May 13-31 Fifth General Conference of the Bishops of Latin America and the Caribbean. The second full day of the meeting May 15 featured a seven-minute presentation from each country's bishops' conference.

Some of the bishops provided detailed analysis of their countries' political, economic and social situation, while others focused on their expectations for the conference.

One common theme, Cardinal Rodriguez said, was the need for better formation for Catholics as disciples of Christ who can spread the faith with reinforcement from the Scriptures.

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Benedict XVI wind

Theological Notebook: Online blog article on the Ressourcement movement

Here's a link to the first part of an interesting-looking online essay (I've not sat with it yet, myself) on the mid-20th century Ressourcement movement that played such a major part of pre-Vatican II history and which still is not without influence as the Council still works itself out a generation later, particularly under the leadership of ressourcement thinker Joseph Ratzinger/Benedict XVI. This blog certainly looks like a much more serious "theological notebook" than mine is, which is often more of a "theological scrapbook." I'm impressed by the kind of effort and essays she's putting into her blog.
Life and Other Impossibilities

Musical: "Life and Other Impossibilities" on iTunes – sort of.

Huh. Well, long after I was intending it to happen, so that I might combine for some earlier regional airplay/marketing possibilities, my CD has finally appeared on iTunes. And wouldn't you know it? The sample quality is shot all to hell – way too loud with signal clipping all over the place: you'd think it was recorded on an old cassette recorder set in front of an amp, and not in Nashville studio heaven. They're not the samples I designated, either, but all 30-second clips starting from the very beginning of the song, which frequently aren't very representative.