UP Catholic 02 05 2016 E Edition Page 16

16 February 5, 2016 THE U.P. CATHOLIC www.upcatholic.org Congratulations to our diocesan employees who reached the following milestones in years of service to the Catholic Church in the Upper Peninsula. 15 years Wendy Negri Terri Gadzinski ***** 30 years Carol Parker I am grateful to all of our employees for their dedicated and faith-filled service as they assist me in ministering to the parishes, Catholic schools and people of the entire diocese. + Bishop John F. Doerfler Diocese of Marquette T he Iowa caucuses are in the rear-view mirror, the New Hampshire primary looms on the horizon, and by most me- dia accounts, the leitmotif of Campaign 2016 is anger. As in: a lot-of-Americans-are- angry-and-that-explains-the attraction-of-cer- tain-candidates, whether that be the anti-political-correct- ness anger of Donald Trump voters, the anti-government anger of Ted Cruz voters, or the Obama-hasnt-been-rad- ical-enough anger of Bernie Sanders voters. For those of us with long cinematic mem- ories, its rather reminiscent of the Howard Beale character in Network, urging people to stick their heads out the window and holler, Im mad as hell and Im not going to take this anymore! I get it. My own reactions to the papers I read daily, the magazines I read weekly, and the news programs I watch occasionally are not often conducive to a happy blood pressure reading. Yet whatever my sympathies may be with this, that, or the other wrath du jour , I hope that, as the 2016 campaign unfolds, the electorate will begin to understand that anger is not a particu- larly healthy metric of public life. The first Marquis of Halifax, George Savile, a 17th-century English statesman and a notable phrase-maker, ranks second only to the im- mortal Dr. Johnson in the number of entries in The Viking Book of Aphorisms. There, I find this small gem: Anger is never without an argument, but seldom with a good one. Does that ring a bell or two, my fellow Americans? It should, given the character of the presiden- tial debate thus far. And that warning bell suggests that weve got a problem. For serious debate, conducted with civility, is the lifeblood of democracy. Civility does not preclude passion. Given the fravity of the issues before us in 2016 which involve the future of freedom around the world and the dignity of the human person here at home passion is entirely welcome. But pas- sion is not anger. Anger is a glandular thing. An angry politics is a politics of the gut. A passion- ate politics, informed and disciplined by reason, can be a politics of the intelligence, a politics of freat ideas: a politics, if you will, of sound moral judgment. And sound moral judgment is rarely, if ever, the child of anger. Most of us recognize that in our personal lives. We ought to recognize it in our public lives, too. In 1818, John Adams, parsing the great events in which he had played a central role, wrote this: But what do we mean by the American Rev- olution? Do we mean the American war? The Revolution was effected before the war com- menced. The Revolution was in the minds and hearts of the people; a change in their religious sentiments of their duties and obligations. The American Republic, in other words, began with ideas: ideas passionately held, to be sure; ideas that took shape in response to perceived griev- ances, without a doubt. But these were ideas (and sentiments, or feelings) about duties and obligations: which is to say, they were ideas and feelings about moral responsibilities. The United States did not begin in a spasm of anger, although there were surely anger-driven incidents before and during the Revolution. And if historys longest experiment in democratic republicanism is to reach its 250th anniversary, a mere ten years from now, in moral continuity with its founding, it wont get there through an anger-defined, anger-driven, and anger-dom- inated politics. It will only get there through a rebirth of genuine political argument, which is a rational, not a glandular, thing. Catholic citizens of the United States should be particularly sensitive to this dimension of our public life. Catholic political theory is an extension of Catholic moral theology; or to put it another way, Catholic political theory treats politics as an arena of moral reasoning and moral judgment. The Catholic citizen, as the Church understands these things, is obliged to think, not just to feel; to judge, not just to react; to exercise prudence in weighing options among usually-imperfect alternatives, not to indulge in fantasies about simplistic quick-fixes to all that ails us and the world. Were the Catholic citizens of the United States to act that way in 2016, both God and the Re- public would be well served. Anger and citizenship THE CATHOLIC DIFFERENCE George Weigel Reading and studying the Bible is being promoted at St. Francis de Sales Parish in Manistique, Divine Infant of Prague Mission in Gulliver and St. Francis de Sales Catholic School. The pastor, Father Ben Paris, encourages parishioners to buy The Catholic Study Bible. He gives Bible quotes in his bulle- tin articles and encour- ages people to look them up. Recognizing a desire and need for Bible study, Father Paris began the Great Adventure Bible Study Program from Ascension Press. Now, more than 50 people are on a quick journey through the Bible. They meet in small groups to accommodate various schedules. Group leaders have included Mary Des- jarden, John Villemure, Patty Faketty and John Hogan. The program gives a big picture of the Bible, focusing on the story about our heavenly Fathers unfailing love for us. It shows how the Bible relates to everyday life and explains how the sacraments, the papacy and our entire Catholic faith are rooted in Scripture. Anyone interested in the program my contact Ascension Press at (800) 376-5020 or visit www.ascensionpress.com. Bible study makes popular program in Manistique, Gulliver John Hogan leads a Bible study session at Divine Infant of Prague Mission in Gulliver. J h H l d Bibl t d

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