Wisdom Wednesday | April 24th

April 24AUSCP NewsRoundup

Welcome to Wisdom Wednesday for April 24 – though it seems more like the month named for mythology’s Janus who could look back and look ahead at the same time!

We look ahead to the AUSCP Assembly in June this year, and back to Earth Day 2024 – and way back to early Christian times. We look forward to a new video on Teilhard de Chardin, and back to five new books by women – the Exvangelicals – on why they left their churches. We find ancient papyri with “new” sayings of Jesus and a feminist theologian today who seeks new images of God. The back-and-forth world of politics includes questions about life, abortion and homelessness, or, Can it be a crime to sleep outside?

Assembly 2024

Looking ahead to June 24-27, Father Mike Bausch, from the AUSCP Leadership Team, wants to invite you to the Assembly.

You can find the schedule of speakers and other Assembly events at our AUSCP website – and how to register.

An optional Assembly event will be the viewing of a new documentary about Teilhard de Chardin, hosted by the producers, Frank and Mary Frost. The first half of the two-hour film documentary will be viewed Tuesday afternoon, June 25, followed by discussion with the Frosts; the second hour will be presented Tuesday evening. Check out this video trailer.


Beyond Earth Day

On this Wednesday after Earth Day 2024, National Catholic Reporter offers a thoughtful comment: Saving the Earth requires new images of God, says feminist theologian Elizabeth Johnson

On World Earth Day 2024, Pope Francis reminded everyone of our duty to protect the planet and safeguard peace.

ELECTION SECTION – Your Conscience, Your Vote

International News

Scriptures for sale and study

  • Early Christian Scripture and ancient codices draw collectors’ eyes to Paris. The starring role in a June auction at Christie’s will be taken by the Crosby-Schoyen Codex, the oldest known book in private hands. Written on papyrus in the Coptic language, it contains the oldest complete version of the First Epistle of Peter and the Book of Jonah.
  • New ‘Sayings of Jesus’ and texts from other fragments are published in a new volume of ancient papyri contains sayings, attributed to Jesus, that were previously unknown—including a dialogue with a disciple named Mary.

Struggles of faith

  • How can a denomination based on reconciling differences split over its disagreements? Opinion: The United Methodist Church has to stop fracturing over sexuality and learn to live with our differences.
  • A Muslim valedictorian is abandoned by her own university. The decision to bar Asna Tabassum from speaking shows academic institutions are failing to protect students equally.
  • Nuns Who Feuded with Texas Bishop say they will defy a Vatican order on Monastery’s Governance. The monastery also directed some of its frustrations toward how the Vatican has handled the dispute. From National Catholic Register.
  • Five recently published books offer five new memoirs by women who left evangelicalism
    • The Exvangelicals: Loving, Living, and Leaving the White Evangelical Church, By Sarah McCammon
    • Nice Churchy Patriarchy: Reclaiming Women’s Humanity from Evangelicalism, By Liz Cooledge Jenkins
    • The Woman They Wanted: Shattering the Illusion of the Good Christian Wife, By Shannon Harris
    • Rift: A Memoir of Breaking Away from Christian Patriarchy, By Cait West
    • Devout: A Memoir of Doubt, By Anna Gazmaria

Catholic questions

Carolyn Ancell, in the National Catholic Reporter, questions the lack of ordained women in the Catholic Church.

I do not see myself as a victim of an intentionally discriminatory church, but as a keeper of the vision in an institution that has yet to deal scientifically, scripturally, theologically, morally or justly with women.”

Migration and human rights

  • In February, Ken Paxton filed suit against Annunciation House in El Paso, Texas, for “alien harboring, human smuggling, and operating a stash house.” The Texas attorney general’s attack on the Catholic organization, which offers hospitality to migrants and refugees, was in line with the overheated rhetoric that is now a part of our daily national diet. However, editors of the Christian Century say the US-Mexico border is rich with ordinary life—not just the sort of stories amplified by political rhetoric.
  • Can communities make it a crime to sleep outside? That question lies at the heart of a case being heard at the Supreme Court Monday. Everyone involved in the case, City of Grants Pass v. Johnson, agrees that homelessness is a complex problem gripping the United States. But they disagree about how cities should be able to address it.

Honoring a ‘Sister of Selma’

Two events this week (today and Saturday) will celebrate the centennial of the birth of the late Sr Mary Antona Ebo, FSM, a Catholic nun who broke barriers for Black women and famously marched with Dr. Martin Luther King as one of the “Sisters of Selma.”

Ebo, born on April 10, 1924, will be feted with a Mass at St. Josephine Bakhita Catholic Church in St. Louis on Wednesday, followed by a centennial celebration on Saturday at St. Alphonsus Liguori “Rock” Catholic Church, where her funeral was celebrated seven years ago.

Sister Mary Antona Ebo inspires us to ‘tell our story’. Dr. Alice Prince reflects on a recent event commemorating the life and legacy of one of America’s most prominent Black Catholic nuns.

‘A Caress and a Smile’

An event that will take place Saturday, April 27, in the Vatican’s Paul VI Hall will bring elderly people, grandparents, and grandchildren from Italy to meet Pope Francis.

Challenge of Catholic Communications

You think you have a language challenge? Vatican News adds Kannada as the 53rd language in which to provide coverage of Papal, Vatican, and Church news, offering the Gospel Proclamation in the mother-tongue of 35 million Indians.

Vatican happenings

If we don’t work together, we are not a church’ — Pope’s representative to U.S., Cardinal Christophe Pierre, emphasized Pope Francis’ call for unity in a conversation with Catholic News Service before formally taking possession of his titular church in Rome. “The pope feels that if we don’t work together, we are not a church,” he stressed. Cardinal Pierre pointed to a growing “tendency to withdraw, to be more auto-referential,” both in the United States and worldwide.

Pope, Council of Cardinals continue discussion of women in the church. Pope Francis and the nine members of his international Council of Cardinals, including U.S. Cardinal Seán P. O’Malley of Boston, continue to listen to women theologians and experts talk about the role of women in the church.

From the U.S. Bishops

Support Wisdom Wednesday

We hope you have enjoyed this roundup of recent news about faith, politics, and culture. We will return next week with another edition of Wisdom Wednesday.

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