Monday, July 25, 2011

Notes: Wednesday, July 20-Monday, July 25, 2011

1. "[In N.S.W. State school 'ethics classes', children] are now critically thinking about ethical concepts and moral issues within a secular framework", writes one of the "volunteer ethics teacher[s]"

Labels: education, morality, secularism, St James Ethics Centre

2. A couple of recent items regarding polyamory

2.1 Research findings on Muslim polygynous and otherwise irregular marriages

Labels: Islam, marriage, polyamory

2.2 Fr. Zuhlsdorf's fisking of an article on "[t]he slippery slope: from decriminalization to social acceptance"
(It's the article itself, rather than the fisking, for which I've logged that web-page.)

Labels: G.L.B.T., marriage, polyamory

3. "The [Russian Orthodox] Moscow Patriarchate has undertaken a real campaign of expansion at home and abroad"

Labels: R.O.C.

4. On planned or desired State attacks on the Sacrament of Penance

4.1 More on Ireland's planned attack on the Sacrament of Penance
(In that post's combox, good points are made by the commenters markomalley, PostCatholic, and albizzi here, here, and here, respectively.)

Labels: Ireland, Sacraments, sexual abuse

4.2 On Sen. Xenophon's desire for Australian States to attack the Sacrament of Penance

Labels: Nick Xenophon, Sacraments, sexual abuse

5. Mr. Skinner on the U.K.'s Office for National Statistics's findings on the size of the homosexual and bisexual proportion of the population

The comment of 20.7.11 / 5pm in the combox here:

The interesting thing about those findings is that it seems that even if you count all non-answers and answers other than heterosexual/straight as 'queer' (or whatever catch-all you prefer) then that would still give a mere 5.2%.

Labels: demography, G.L.B.T.

6. "Obama's [latest] gay rights push"

Labels: Barack Obama, G.L.B.T., marriage, U.S.A.

Feast of St. James the Greater, Apostle, and of St. Christopher, Martyr, A.D. 2011

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Notes: Wednesday, July 13-Tuesday, July 19, 2011 (part 2 of 2)

6. "Notitiae ["the official journal of the Vatican’s Congregation for Divine Worship"] Responses online"

Labels: liturgy, Roman Curia

7. "The Greens, to be to be launched in Melbourne on July 21, is the first book to provide a practical analysis of the wide-ranging [Australian] Greens policies"

A revised version of one of that book's chapters, by Dr. Kevin Donnelly, was published at The Punch last week. Of particular interest were its last half-dozen or so paragraphs; this is the last of them:
Given that all Australian schools, under the banner of the ALP’s education revolution, will be made to teach a national curriculum after 2012, it should not surprise if the Greens pressure the Gillard Government to incorporate a positive view of LGBTI lifestyles in the new curriculum.[]
Labels: Australian Labor, education, G.L.B.T., Greens

8. Dr. Feser on "some of the non-serious objections" to the cosmological argument for God's Existence

Labels: God's Existence, philosophy, theology

9. "Studies estimate between 20,000 and 40,000 polygamists live in the heavily Mormon state [of Utah]"

Labels: C.J.C.L.D.S., polyamory

10. "Russians launch space super-telescope": "The main point is that Russia is returning to scientific programmes in space after a long break"

Labels: Russia

Reginaldvs Cantvar
Feast of St. Vincent de Paul, Confessor, A.D. 2011

Notes: Wednesday, July 13-Tuesday, July 19, 2011 (part 1 of 2)

1. Interesting discussion on Assisi III

Labels: Benedict XVI. Ratzinger, ecumenism, inter-religious dialogue

2. Mr. Muehlenberg on the A.B.C. and its recent Compass episode on so-called gay marriage

(See also Mr. Clarkson's comment of 13.7.11 / 2pm in that post's combox; his comment deals with the first episode of what was apparently a two-part series.) The remarks by Prof. Altman as recorded in the episode transcript are of particular interest. (See this web-page for a follow-up piece by Mr. Muehlenberg on one of those remarks and gay polyamory.)

Labels: A.B.C., Compass, Dennis Altman, Frank Brennan, G.L.B.T., marriage, morality, polyamory

3. Msgr. de Galarreta with some quotations from then-Cardinal Ratzinger

Labels: Benedict XVI. Ratzinger

4. Fr. Zuhlsdorf on the nine ways in which one might "participate in the sin of another person"

Labels: morality

5. "[Ireland's] Justice Minister Alan Shatter vowed to bring in ... new laws" under which priests "will be jailed for up to five years if they fail to report paedophiles to gardai -- even if they are told of the abuse in the confession box"

(That web-page came to my attention via this AQ comment.) Related coverage:

Labels: Alan Shatter, Ireland, sexual abuse

Reginaldvs Cantvar
Feast of St. Vincent de Paul, Confessor, A.D. 2011

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Notes: Thursday, July 7-Tuesday, July 12, 2011

1. Dr. Biddulph on paternal involvement in families
Father love is known in countless studies to help children grow happy and strong. It is the key to boys feeling motivated and believing in themselves, that being a good man is something to strive for. It gives daughters self-esteem and a sense of their intelligence and a value beyond mere sexual attraction. In families where mothers would otherwise do all the emotional heavy lifting, an involved dad provides the missing key to everyone's mental health. Women love a good father. They often wish they had had one themselves.
Labels: families, parenthood, social trends, Steve Biddulph

2. Associate Professor Craig on, among other things, Australian "work-family balance strategies and parents' time in paid work, domestic work and childcare"

Labels: families, parenthood, social trends, work

3. "'That's racist' as a punch line",0,1863723.story

Labels: racism, social trends

4. "the FSSP ... have a general indult to use both the 2nd confiteor and St. Joseph in the canon"

Labels: F.S.S.P., T.L.M.

5. Ms Irvine and Mr. Penberthy on, among other things, marriage

I highlight here the two articles in question for some of the facts and figures which they report. From Ms Irvine:
... Two thirds of marriages in Australia are performed by civil celebrants rather than religious ministers. ... In the mid-1980s, 60 per cent of the population aged 15 and over were married. By the early noughties, this had fallen to 55 per cent.

The proportion of the population who will never marry increased from 29 per cent to 32 per cent.

Meanwhile, the probability of marriages ending in divorce has risen. The Bureau of Statistics estimates about 28 per cent of marriages entered into in the mid-1980s could be expected to end in divorce. By the early noughties, this had risen to 33 per cent. ...

Mr. Penberthy had more on the relative proportions of civilly- and religiously-celebrated weddings:
... ABS figures released this month show that religious wedding ceremonies are now very much in the minority for couples tying the knot. Almost two-thirds of all wedding ceremonies are now conducted by celebrants. In 1969, 90 per cent of couples opted for church weddings. In 1999 it was 50 per cent. In 2009 it was just 35 per cent. That’s a decline of 15 per cent in the space of one decade.
Labels: divorce, marriage, social trends

6. A new initiative for propagating the Darwinist worldview

Labels: David Christian, education, evolution, history, secularism

7. More on 'sleeping rough' by the homeless
According to the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS), on Census night in 2006 the homeless population in Australia was 105,000. There are more than 27,000 living in NSW, a figure that has seen no decline since 1990 (ABS 2009).

The bureau’s most recent report on homelessness – Counting the Homeless, 2006 (which includes data from the 2006 Census and other sources, such as the Australian Institute of Health and Welfare) – found that primary homelessness, such as ‘sleeping rough’ or in an improvised shelter, accounted for 16 per cent of all homelessness in Australia.

News&subclass=CW National]
See also the editorial:

(Again, I ask you not to jump to conclusions about why I'm posting this. And note that the inverted commas in this item's title are not scare quotes; I'm just following the usage of the linked article.)

Labels: homelessness, poverty

Reginaldvs Cantvar
Feast of St. John Gualbert, Abbot, and of Sts. Nabor and Felix, Martyrs, A.D. 2011

Wednesday, July 6, 2011

Notes: Wednesday, June 30-Wednesday, July 6, 2011

1. "[In the U.S., n]o state referendum or initiative to outlaw same-sex marriage has ever been defeated at the ballot box"

Labels: G.L.B.T., marriage, U.S.A.

2. "... an approximation [of pi] appears in the Bible ..."

Anyone know the chapter and verse for that approximation?

Labels: Scripture

3. Mr. Timbs on the origin of the Sacraments

Here is an excerpt from a comment by one of CathNews's frequent commenters, one David Timbs:
... in fact, Jesus never ordained anyone to anything nor instituted any sacraments of any kind. That sacramental system developed over time in the Church
Labels: David Timbs, Priesthood, Sacraments, theology

4. "Many Successful Gay Marriages Share an Open Secret"

(Brought to my attention via a comment in the combox of this CathNews post.)

Labels: G.L.B.T., marriage, polyamory

5. Talk soon. Talk often--scandalous new "sex education guide"

Available here:

(Brought to my attention by a short article in one of the editions of the Sydney Daily Telegraph last week, an expanded edition of which article is available here.)

That guide's title reminds of that old joke about how to vote in some kinds of corrupt electoral systems--'vote early and vote often', which is fitting, given that that guide would do to the virtue of chastity in a youngster what electoral corruption does to civic virtue in a citizen.

Labels: education, Jenny Walsh, vice, youngsters

6. A couple of recent items regarding the Russian Orthodox Church

6.1 "The Myth of Orthodox Revival in Russia"

Labels: R.O.C.

6.2 "Russo-Orthodox cleric in Vatican ceremony: closer ties?"

Labels: Diocese of Rome, R.O.C.

7. Death of H.I.&R.H. Archduke Otto of Austria

Eternal rest grant unto him, O Lord; and let perpetual light shine upon him. May he rest in peace. Amen.

Labels: Otto Habsburg-Lorraine

Reginaldvs Cantvar