US Catholic Faith in Real Life

Daily Links, Nov. 7: Missal misgivings, bishop blunders, and CCHD stalemate

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We're under three weeks away from the implementation of the new translation of the Roman Missal in U.S. parishes, and people are starting to talk. Although the Catholic press has been covering the story for more than two years now, secular outlets are finally catching up, with many papers around the country running an AP story on the new translations over the weekend. That story offers both sides of the argument on the new missal, including a pretty harsh criticism from a New Jersey priest who claims some of the language "separates religion from real life."

CNN also jumped on the story, claiming a "major overhaul" of the Mass is taking place and that Catholics are confused by the change. And our own Bryan Cones gives the new missal the toughest examination of all: The Dad Test.

In Illinois, Cardinal Francis George and the state's other bishops took aim at Gov. Pat Quinn, a Catholic, last week when they heard he'd be speaking at a luncheon hosted by a pro-choice organization. What they didn't know is that he was going to be presenting an award to a rape victim who has become a strong advocate for others who have suffered a rape, and Quinn is proud to honor her regardless of the setting. George now admits he may have made a mistake in criticizing Quinn without having the facts. Here at U.S. Catholic, Meghan Murphy-Gill blogs about the tendency to act too quickly when we hear the word "abortion."

In other bishop news, officials of the U.S. bishops' Catholic Campaign for Human Development have responded to the latest attacks on the group, saying that after careful study they've found only one out of 55 allegations to be legitimate. Unlike the critics, who released a report based on viewing websites, the organization itself actually contacted and spoke with their grant recipients to clear up any questions they had. CCHD's opponents still aren't satisfied, and likely won't be, as CCHD's executive director Ralph McCloud says the attacks are mostly based on the fact that critics "simply do not agree with CCHD's mission and how we apply our guidelines and requirements."

Finally, how was the homily you heard at Mass yesterday? One Vatican official is worried that preaching in Catholic parishes has become too "gray, dull and flavorless." He may be right, but if your pastor isn't inspiring you with his homilies, you might want to find a slightly more delicate way of saying it.