As another week comes to an end, this is your chance to top off your glass with a final helping of news, current events, and just plain interesting stuff that may not have made into the mainstream media. A chance to linger for a few more moments before we close the door on the week. Below are some links to articles, blogs, and miscellaneous happenings that caught my eye over the past few days. Sample what you like - I'll serve up more next Friday...
The Queenship of the Blessed Virgin Mary - "The Blessed Mother, in her regal beauty, authority, and power, has not left us orphans, for she is 'the Living Temple of the Holy Spirit, the Inviolate Mountain, the ladder” that joins Heaven and earth.'"
Cardinal Dolan to Give Closing Benediction at GOP Convention - "The news came out during an exclusive interview Raymond Arroyo conducted with Mitt Romney..." See also, this, and this.
Oh, but I guess Cardinal Dolan is not welcome at the Democratic National Convention: check it out here.
Barack Obama: Enemy of the Church? - "A coincidental pattern of antagonism and hostility may not make him an outright enemy of the Church, but he is no friend to Catholics and others of good faith."
Abortion in Cases of Rape: Todd Akin’s Gaffe Spotlights Catholic Teaching — Again - "A furor over a recent campaign-season comment provides another opportunity to clarify Church doctrine."
Todd Akin said something stupid. Barack Obama supports after-birth abortion. Which is worse? - [That's a valid question. i think we know the answer.]
What Voters Will Remember about Abortion in November - "What the Obama campaign has decided to do is to make unrestricted access to abortion a key component of his campaign. By highlighting Sandra Fluke, NARAL, Planned Parenthood, and a host of pro-abortion advocates at the Democratic National Convention, their strategy seems to be to use abortion as a wedge issue in order to paint Republicans as out of touch with most Americans."
A Paul Ryan Round-Up - [A lot of info here from early in the week. Yep, Paul Ryan is still big news in the Catholic blogosphere.]
Solidarity and the Welfare State - "An interesting look at Paul Ryan by Father Barron based upon the twin poles of Catholic social teaching: subsidiarity and solidarity."
Small-town Paul Ryan: Defender of Subsidiarity - "No doubt this fundamental Catholic social teaching distinguishes Ryan from fellow liberal Catholic Joe Biden, whose job he seeking to take. Both are of Irish Catholic descent, but that is about all they have in common."
Paul Ryan and Government Pelagianism - "Paul Ryan back in May and I was struck by the common-sense approach he takes in evaluating government programs like Medicare and Medicaid. His main point being that government compassion too often measured by inputs rather than outcomes; by money spent and programs created than by how many people are lifted out of poverty." [The author continues with this theme and relates it to prayer...but I think this political observation is spot on too.]
Bishops Dolan, Morlino and Aquila defend VP pick Ryan’s Catholicism - "In the last week three prominent US bishops have publicly defended Republican Vice Presidential candidate Paul Ryan’s reputation as a faithful Catholic amidst claims from some nuns and clergy who are claiming otherwise."
Where wages come from - "My suggestion? Treat everyone in the employment relationship equally and justly: employees and employers alike."
Are we witnessing the establishment of a “state religion”? - [Fr. Z not pulling any punches.]
Economics, reproductive health and the integrity of the family - "The modern economist who restricts his professional interest to financial data displays a much narrower view of economics than has been characteristic of the Christian tradition."
How Protestants Learned to Love the Pill - "The Protestant Reformation was in significant part a protest against the perceived antinatalism of the late Medieval Christian Church. It was a celebration of procreation that also saw contraception and abortion as among the most wicked of human sins, as direct affronts to the ordinances of God."
Why does the same-sex marriage debate seem so futile? - "What many people fail to grasp is that key terms of the debate are being interpreted in different ways. Unless these are clarified, there is little hope of a meeting of minds. Here are a few of the issues which need to be unpacked."
Should the Bishop Have Bought the Crystal Cathedral? - "One of the major criticisms of Catholic architecture during the past fifty years is that it has incorrectly adopted many of the forms of low-church Protestantism...Are [Spirit-of-Vatican-II "liturgists"] finally admitting their agenda by purchasing a ready for TV megachurch complete with a jumbotron and three huge balconies for the 'spectators'?"
Interesting follow-up to the previous article: Amazing discovery: Churches are Houses of God
Picture of the Week (in honor of Mary, Queen of Heaven):