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Showing posts from January, 2022

Liberalism

  Liberalism                       Gerry OShea The revolutionary cry from America in the 1770’s that all men are created equal shattered the prevailing political wisdom of those years. It debunked the legitimacy of monarchs and clerics who claimed that their power was unassailable because it was part of their heritage, approved from on high. The American colonies asserted their right to independence from England and they won the war against a disgruntled king to establish a democratic form of government, the first since the Greeks of old. Fourteen years later, the French – greatly influenced by events on this side of the Atlantic - made a similarly decisive move. Louis XV1 was convinced that he ruled with divine approval, but he and his wife, Queen Marie Antoinette, represented the Ancien Regime and were dispatched by guillotine.  Loud French proclamations about their new radical guiding principles of Liberty, Fraternity and Equality reverberated throughout the world. These

The Biden Record

  The Biden Record                     Gerry OShea President Biden’s poor approval rating is causing consternation among Democrats. His score in various polls hovers around 45%. This is the lowest of any president at this stage of his tenure in the last half century. The one exception is his immediate predecessor, Donald Trump, who, a year into his term in the White House, was judged to perform even more poorly at just above 35%.   Nearly all the experts predict that Republicans will win a majority in the House of Representatives in the November midterm elections, with dire consequences for the Democratic agenda. The leadership of the senate is also in danger of changing from Schumer to McConnell. Our era is defined by chaos and uncertainty. We have the jitters worrying about covid and climate change, police brutality and mass shootings in schools. Democracy itself is under attack with about 50 million Trump voters firmly convinced that Joe Biden thieved the election. It is imper

The Challenges of a Synodal Church

  The Challenges of a Synodal Church              Gerry OShea The 16 th Synod of Bishops announced recently by Pope Francis, unlike any previous one, calls for involvement in church decision-making by all Catholics in every diocese throughout the world. The pope stressed that the heart of this process involves people walking together and listening to one another, believing there is a divine light prompting the whole ecclesial movement. The Synod will take two years. The first crucial stage, which began last October, involves worldwide consultations that will continue until April of 2022. This listening phase ushers in further deliberations in each continent lasting until March 2023. The whole process will culminate in October of that year when the bishops assemble in Rome, presumably to make decisions, influenced by grassroots thinking, which will then be passed on to the pontiff for his approval. The Vatican stresses that the Synod should not be compared to some kind of parliam