Why I am more pro-life than Carly Fiorina

Written by guest blogger Cecilia. 

When I was twelve, I asked my Norwegian friend what he thought the United States was like. “In America,” he answered, “you can shoot anyone you want.” I laughed and told him he was wrong, it wasn’t like people in the United States just carried guns around. I thought he must have seen that on TV.

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Loving the Other//Loving (an)Other

Written by guest blogger Leila

Last week, in my Muslim-Christian Dialogue class, my professor continuously used the terms other and religious other interchangeably. I wondered: Other in relation to what/whom? Was this going to be yet another class where Christianity is the baseline to which everything else is compared? Since the start of classes, I have deeply questioned my role at this school and in my classrooms as a student who grew up interfaith – as a student who is living and loving proof that multifaith/interfaith (whatever you want to call it) relations and dialogue aren’t solely fostered for the purpose of resolving conflict, but can be pursued out of deep love, care, and respect for an(other) human.

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I Love the Pope too, but…

By Grace O’Malley. 

In her post “Finally Understanding ‘Alleluia’” Theia echoed the sentiments of many American Catholics since the election of Pope Francis. “Liberal Catholics,” she wrote, “our time has come.”

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And yes, she is right. The fact that we have a Pope even noting social inequality is nothing short of revolutionary. It is a breath of fresh air for liberal Catholics who have disassociated their faith from the Church as institution. That he is addressing climate change, poverty, and mass incarceration is fantastic. The fact that he is incredibly humble is awesome.

But sometimes I have trouble jumping on the Pope-adoring bandwagon. I think that if I could look at him simply as an international figurehead who has moral authority, or maybe if he were Lutheran or Jewish or Buddhist or Muslim, I’d be on board in an instant. How can you not?

Yes, of course we need more people to be advocates for the poor! Yes, we need to do something about climate change! Yes, we need to talk about the prison system! Yes, we need more people urging us to take action on social justice issues! Yes, Yes, Yes.

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Finally understanding “Alleluia”

By Theia. 

http://www.nytimes.com/2015/09/24/us/politics/pope-francis-obama-white-house.html

It has been a busy week for me, so I haven’t fully unpacked my thoughts on the Pope’s visit to DC and all of his political commentary, but the overall feeling is joy*. My political views and spiritual views are finally accepted, that these two identities of mine – liberal and Catholic – are no longer repelling magnets but magnets that are attracted to each other. For first time in my life I don’t have to pray to God with doubt, hesitation, or reservations that God won’t love my liberal half. But now I can pray to God with grace, with whole-hearted thankfulness that I was able to witness a Latin American Jesuit Pope in my lifetime.

Liberal Catholics, our time has come.

Matthew 5:6 “6“Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness, for they shall be satisfied.”

Have a great weekend, and don’t forget to help the poor.

*Joy: “While the more secular definition of joy may be simply an intense form of happiness, religious joy is always about a relationship. Joy has an object and that object is God.” James Martin, SJ

How to Get a Rise out of a Young Feminist at a Fundamentalist Religious Convention

Written by guest blogger Amara

The past week has been an interesting one for me.

I’ve been at the SDA General Conference in San Antonio, after my parents generously decided to block out a whole 10 days from my already fleeting, quickly moving summer. But I guess I’ll forgive them for that eventually.

If you aren’t familiar, the Seventh Day Adventist church is based on these three boiled down notions:

  • Church happens on Saturday, not Sunday — from sundown Friday to sundown Saturday.
  • Life is to be lived naturally + as straightedge as possible — many are vegetarian, no drinks or drugs.
  • Jesus is coming back to save those who have earned (enter sideeye here) it. And soon so like, get your shit together.

It seems simple because for the most part, it is. The Adventist life is a surefire way to live simply. This whole week is evidence of that, as I’ve been surrounded by people young and old, hetero families of all sizes with smiles on their faces. Adventists aren’t a flashy people, in fact most Adventists I have met are unassuming and well-intentioned.  Adventists are content.

And that’s where trouble starts for me.

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Romeo and the Feminist

By Theia. 

“People will instinctively find out, as I have done, that it is not your forte to talk of yourself, but to listen while others talk of themselves; they will feel, too, that you listen with no malevolent scorn of the indiscretion, but with a kind of innate sympathy – not the less comforting and encouraging because it is very unobtrusive in its manifestations.”

“How do you know? How can you guess all this sir?”

“I know it well; therefore I proceed almost as freely as if I were writing my thoughts in a diary…”

-Jane Eyre

Dear John*,

Although we were both too shy to admit it, I think we could call it summer love. And since we were both too shy, we didn’t know how to flirt. In the end we were just friends, and that’s what I loved most about it.

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How the Catholic Church Lost, and Continues to Lose

“A Smaller and More Ardent Church”

That the Catholic Church continues to shrink should come as a surprise to no one.  But I can’t help but think, didn’t they see this coming?

In 1971, Catholic theologian and self-proclaimed “radical lesbian feminist” Mary Daly stated, somewhat prophetically, that,

“The women’s movement will present a growing threat to patriarchal religion less by attacking than by simply leaving it behind.”

Although she was fired from her teaching position at Boston College due to her politics and her refusal to let men into her classes, and although she is still considered by many Catholic academics to be a radical, forty-four years later it kind of seems like she hit the nail on the head. As society has changed for women, and changed in general, the Catholic Church has not budged. Instead of staying in it and fighting for change, many have simply left it behind. The Catholic Church has lost the position it once had in the lives of Americans.

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