Thursday, March 10, 2005

The implosion of baseball

Well, Congress has finally dropped the ball on Major League Baseball, demanding that some of the game's most high-profile stars and personalities (including Head Horse's-Ass Donald Fehr) appear before a Committee of Congress investigating steroid use in major sports in America.

MLB is fighting the subpoenas, attempting to say that Congress has no jurisdiction over the issue. Here's my question: Does baseball want to further harm its image in the eyes of the American public? Is it the desire both of MLB and the union make baseball look like the Great National Sporting Joke as opposed to the National Pastime? Apparently this is the goal of Mr. Selig and his attorneys in New York. If their goal was to rehabilitate the greatness of the national sport, they would be co-operating with Congress, no questions asked.

Wednesday, March 09, 2005

The dream of an Irish Catholic Tennessee

Nicole and I had a safe trip to Tennessee to help her parents move. The house they've chosen is a lovely old one-story in the tiny town of White Pine. It was built in an early 20th Century style, and includes an old clawfoot tub as well as (in the true Southern tradition) a parlor. There not being any room for us in other parts of the new house, Nicole and I were consigned to retire in the parlor each evening. Aside from a few minor pieces of work that need doing, the house makes me envious. For the most part, it is a very accessable home, one that is easy for me to navigate in, and that is saying something, because there are many houses we can't even contemplate living in because they are inaccessible to me.

The National Catholic Reporter, the trumpeter of heterodoxy and schism in the Church in America, published a list last week of people who had been disciplined by Rome for their heresies since the beginning of John Paul II's pontificate. As Karl Keating points out in his e-letter for this week, this supposed exhaustive list of repression actually accounts for the harsh discipline of one heretical Catholic per year in each year of the Pope's reign. That's one per year in a Church of 1.1 billion people. If anything, it may be argued that Rome has been overly merciful!

We are entering a time of year when our hearts turn to the celebration of all things Irish, as next week is St. Patrick's Day. How my heart aches that the world should know the true meaning of the feast! This is especially true for my in-laws, who are quite proud of what they perceive as their Irish heritage, yet fail to connect the annual celebration of March 17th with the Catholic faith from which it sprung. (Nor, I might add, do they have an understanding of just how Catholic the Irish are, at least culturally...I think a trip to Ireland would simply shock them!)

To believe certain Protestant commentators, Patrick might just as well have been a good Baptist! However, as I age I realize that you really can't celebrate the glories of St. Patrick, of Ireland, or the whole of the Irish race outside of Holy Mother Church. The longer I live, the more I understand that true Irishness is intimately connected with True Faith. If one claims Irishness, but lives outside the confines of Holy Mother Church, that person doesn't have the fullness of Irish heritage, let alone the Fullness of Faith. I can speak to this, because I didn't really appreciate my own Irish heritage until I embraced the truth of the Catholic faith. The Church brings a whole new dimension to being Irish, because in the light of history one understands that the Christianity of Ireland was the Catholic faith, and this was the faith for which our ancestors spilled their blood on that island for over a thousand years. When one understands that, it gives being Irish an entirely deeper meaning. Erin Go Braugh.

Here's to the dream of one day acheiving a truly Irish South, complete with the truly Irish faith!

Locations of visitors to this page
Profile Visitor Map - Click to view visits
Create your own visitor map