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Archive for April 19th, 2020

[The Sunday following Easter Sunday is the day Catholics are reminded of the story of “Doubting Thomas“:
19 In the evening of that same day [Easter], the first day of the week, the doors were closed in the room where the disciples were, for fear of the Jews.  Jesus came and stood among them.  He said to them, ‘Peace be with you,’
20 and, after saying this, he showed them his hands and his side.  The disciples were filled with joy at seeing the Lord,
21 and he said to them again, ‘Peace be with you.  ‘As the Father sent me, so am I sending you.
22 After saying this he breathed on them and said: ‘Receive the Holy Spirit.
23 If you forgive anyone’s sins, they are forgiven; if you retain anyone’s sins, they are retained.
24 Thomas, called the Twin, who was one of the Twelve, was not with them when Jesus came.
25 So the other disciples said to him, ‘We have seen the Lord,’ but he answered, ‘Unless I can see the holes that the nails made in his hands and can put my finger into the holes they made, and unless I can put my hand into his side, I refuse to believe.’
26 Eight days later the disciples were in the house again and Thomas was with them.  The doors were closed, but Jesus came in and stood among them.  ‘Peace be with you,’ he said.
27 Then he spoke to Thomas, ‘Put your finger here; look, here are my hands.  Give me your hand; put it into my side.  Do not be unbelieving any more but believe.
28 Thomas replied, ‘My Lord and my God!’
29 Jesus said to him: ‘You believe because you can see me.  Blessed are those who have not seen and yet believe.
30 There were many other signs that Jesus worked in the sight of the disciples, but they are not recorded in this book.
31 These are recorded so that you may believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God, and that believing this you may have life through his name.
[In my lifetime, I have been a believer, an agnostic, an atheist, and an on-again / off-again believer / agnostic.  I am currently a believer (with doubts).  My doubts are not about God.  My doubts are about the Church and religion I CHOOSE to follow.  As a practicing Catholic, I simply cannot tolerate the child abuse scandals which have come to light in the past few decades.  I recognize the Church is made up of individuals and sometimes they can be spiritually weak and fail in their personal duties and responsibilities.  But I cannot accept the institutional toleration of crimes against children (or the elderly).  I believe the arc of history bends towards justice.  I believe the touch of the Holy Spirit guides the Church on its own arc towards justice.  I believe in a just AND a loving God.  I do not fear God’s wrath against the Church of my faith as much as I dread God’s indifference in a time of need.  I am still waiting for this generation of Church leaders to ACT.  Justice will come.  The question which remains to be answered is whether today’s leaders place greater value on the followers or on the institution?  By your acts we shall know you.  —  KMAB]
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On This Day In:
2019 Before & After
Quiet, Please!
2018 Heavy On The Starch
2017 But The Beginning Of What?
2016 Today’s Rule
2015 Remembering Oklahoma City
2014 Who Was That Masked Man?
2013 Enemy Mine
2012 Strengthen Me
2011 Service, Please
2010 The Church In Crisis…

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Orwell sought to awaken British and U.S. societies to the totalitarian dangers that threatened democracy even after the Nazi defeat.  In letters before and after his novel’s completion, Orwell urged “constant criticism,” warning that any “immunity” to totalitarianism must not be taken for granted: “Totalitarianism, if not fought against, could triumph anywhere.”
For 19 years, private companies practicing an unprecedented economic logic that I call surveillance capitalism have hijacked the Internet and its digital technologies.
Because this power does not claim our bodies through violence and fear, we under-value its effects and lower our guard.  Instrumentarian power exiles us from our own behavior.  It delivers our futures to surveillance capitalism’s interests.  And it undermines human autonomy and self-determination, without which democracy cannot survive.
Surveillance capitalist falsely claim their methods are inevitable consequences of digital technologies.  But Orwell despised “the instinct to bow down before the conqueror of the moment.”  Courage, he insisted, demands that we assert our morals even against forces that appear invincible.
Seven decades later, we can honor Orwell’s death by refusing to cede the digital future.  Like Orwell, think critically and criticize.  Do not take freedom for granted. Fight for the one idea in the long human story that asserts the people’s right to rule themselves.  Orwell reckoned it was worth dying for.
  —  Shoshana Zuboff
From her opinion / editorial:  “The Threat of Big Other
Appearing in Time Magazine, dtd: 6 June 2019
This quote is from the hard-copy issue.  The article is also online, but significantly differs from the text version.
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On This Day In:
2019 Before & After
Quiet, Please!
2018 Heavy On The Starch
2017 But The Beginning Of What?
2016 Today’s Rule
2015 Remembering Oklahoma City
2014 Who Was That Masked Man?
2013 Enemy Mine
2012 Strengthen Me
2011 Service, Please
2010 The Church In Crisis…

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