Tuesday, January 25, 2005

This Conservative Sister Likes That Progressive Brother's Attitude

I have changed the name of what was once "Progressive Catholic Blogs" and expanded it. It is now "Catholic Blogs," and it includes thirty blogs instead of the previous fifteen. I've added a number of moderate and conservative weblogs. Why the name change, and why the addition of moderates/conservatives? Am I flip-flopping again? No, I've become quite comfortable being a progressive/orthodox Catholic. I've changed the name of this section and expanded it to include a more diverse selection because I feel that, despite our many differences, we are still one Church. We have differences on a number of things -- everything from gay marriage to female priests to life issues. Despite these differences, I do believe that what unites us is greater than what divides us, because what unites us is a common Catholic Christian belief in Jesus Christ, and a common Catholic Christian Eucharist. What division can overcome this unity? So, even though I am quite comfortable with my own progressive Catholic faith, which is at its core still orthodox despite the claims of others, I do consider my moderate and conservative brothers and sisters as just that -- my brothers and sisters. We bicker, and at times it even gets ugly, but we can never change the fact that we are one Mystical Body of Christ, one People of God, one Church.

Nathan at Fides, Spes, Caritas, as a self-declared progressive Catholic is someone who I don't agree with a lot of the time. However, I've gotta go with him on this one ... what unites us is so much greater than what divides us. It was something that I have always remembered from reading All the Pope's Men. John Allen, while writing in the finest nonjudgmental journalistic style, repeatedly reminded readers that, whether liberal or conservative, we are all passionate because we love God and His Church and want to do right by it.

I have also learned that from Talmida whose honesty and passion I find just as inspirational as I find many of her views infuriating (I can say that because I'm fairly sure she'd say the same about me ... it's that love/hate thing going on!). She is the only person I have had a debate with who has stopped and said that I probably was right but she realized she just didn't want to admit it. I can't tell you how much I admire that ability to reexamine your position and then admit it. Total honesty. Wow.

I was just bringing that point up to my girls the other day. They are just the age to have liberal- or conservative-bashing break out on either side of discussions in the cafeteria. That reminder of our common love of Christ puts a human face on all my brothers and sisters whether I agree with them or not. Good on you, Nathan!

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