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Why I love my invisible friend Print E-mail
Word on Fire
Thursday, Aug. 28, 2014 -- 12:00 AM

One of the favorite taunts of the New Atheists is that religious people believe in an "invisible friend."

They are implying, of course, that religion is little more than a pathetic exercise in wishful thinking, a reversion to childish patterns of projection and self-protection. It is well past time, they say, for believers to grow up, leave their cherished fantasies behind, and face the real world.

In offering this characterization, the New Atheists are showing themselves to be disciples of the old atheists such as Feuerbach, Marx, Comte, and Freud, all of whom made more or less similar observations.

I’m writing here to let atheists know that I think they're right, at least about God being an invisible friend. Where they're wrong is in supposing that surrendering to this unseen reality is de-humanizing or infantilizing.

POLST: A Catholic moral dilemma (part two) Print E-mail
Heroes for Life
Written by Lillian Quinones   
Thursday, Aug. 28, 2014 -- 12:00 AM

Author's note:  "God is the foundation of hope: not any god, but the God who has a human face and who has loved us to the end, each one of us and humanity in its entirety. His Kingdom is not an imaginary hereafter, situated in a future that will never arrive; his Kingdom is present wherever he is loved and wherever his love reaches us. His love alone gives us the possibility of soberly persevering day by day, without ceasing to be spurred on by hope, in a world which by its very nature is imperfect" (Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI, Spei Salvi).

The words of Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI articulate the unique aspect of hope in the Catholic paradigm. In Part II of POLST: A Catholic Moral Dilemma, Dr. Franklin Smith contrasts POLST to the Catholic approach to end-of-life decision-making.

Reflections on work as we mark Labor Day Print E-mail
Seeing with Jesus' Eyes
Thursday, Aug. 28, 2014 -- 12:00 AM

Labor Day offers us opportunities to reflect upon the value, blessings, and crosses of work from the perspective of Catholic spirituality. Since we spend much time working and commuting to work, such reflection is important.

In Genesis 1:26 God said, "Let us make man in our image, after our likeness." By our work, we honor the gifts and talents we received from God. Our work helps us to co-create with God by transforming creation in ways that benefit humanity, reflect Christ-like values, and bring creation to its completion and fulfillment.

Transforming the world -- and ourselves

When we make crutches or rosaries, or write about poverty, we ought to feel good because our work benefits others. When we prepare meals, grow crops, or repair computers, we should be proud because our work serves others.