Jul. 23 at 9:31am
In his recent talk on von Hildebrand and superabundant finality, Jules distinguished among different kinds of "superabundant finality". Some superabundant goods of sex (i.e. children) are much more important and central to its essence than others (such as, say, stress relief). He drew an analogy with an ancient apple tree at our home in New Hampshire. He said that its apples are its fruit in a much deeper and fuller sense than other real superabundant gifts connected to the tree, such as shade and fun for boys. I thought those who listened might like a visual. This is the tree he had in mind.
It is true, the Brotherhood of Hope--and the community from which they originated
Jul. 31 at 3:16pm | See in context
Well you did say, " I wish Fr. Bob had time for conversations like that. On the other hand, I'm not sure he and I see eye to eye on the subject".
Forgive me if read into that...my point is broader. JPII sums it up nicely:"There is so much need today for mature Christian personalities, conscious of their baptismal identity, of their vocation and mission in the Church and in the world! There is great need for living Christian communities! And here are the movements and the new ecclesial communities: they are the response, given by the Holy Spirit, to this critical challenge at the end of the millennium. You are this providential response." (ibid)
Jul. 31 at 3:05pm | See in context
Further, I think you are overstating the case when you say Wojtyla strongly supports Catholic covenant community. The article you link says nothing about covenant communities. He is speaking generally about the "new movements" within the Church, including the charismatic renewal. I support those too.
And he reminds all that it is "easy to err", and that to "guarantee the authenticity" of a charism, it is essential to be in proper relation to the competent ecclesial authorities.
One of the ways (only one) the Covenant Communities went off track is that they were not properly related to the Church and Church authorities. This isn't my personal opinioin; it's the finding of the bishops.
My concern with this post isn't to diss community, but rather to make a start toward identifying and articulating the principles by which they can avoid error and dysfunction—the kind of error and dysfunction that caused so much damage in so many lives through the Covenant Communities of the 80s.
Jul. 31 at 3:00pm | See in context
How do you know that, Samwise, when I have said nothing of what he holds or what I hold, or where I see the difference between us?
Jul. 31 at 2:29pm | See in context
Wojtyla strongly supports Catholic covenant community:
So did Ratzinger and so does Bergoglio. Perhaps it's true that you don't see eye to eye with Fr. Bob...but I do
Jul. 31 at 2:24pm | See in context
And Samwise, thank you for that link! As always for us, Wojtyla's thought is seminal. He nails the nub right in the beginning:
The Acting Person does not contain a theory of community, but deals only with the elementary condition under which existence and activity “together with others” promotes the self-fulfillment of the human being as a person, or at least does not obstruct it.
This imo, in a nutshell, is the difference between sound and dysfunctional community. Wholesome communities promote the the self-fulfillment of the human being as a person; dysfunctional communities tend in practice to subordinate the individual to the whole.
Jul. 31 at 12:49pm | See in context
Samwise, I wish Fr. Bob had time for conversations like that. On the other hand, I'm not sure he and I see eye to eye on the subject. His sense of where and why convenant communities went wrong is (unless his view has changed in recent years) very different from mine.
Jul. 31 at 12:41pm | See in context
Rhett, I, too, noticed that point of Jacques Maritain's, in his introduction to Raissa's Journal. It's come to mind often. He remarks in the same place that even if the initiative dies on the vine, often the friendships it engendered abide. I love that thought, and I have found it to be true in my own experience.
I agree completely that the deepest kind of interpersonal communion cannot be forced. Forced intimacy is one of the mistakes the Covenant Communities made.
One of the things I admire in Newman's description of the Oratory of St. Philip Neri, as he understood it and brought it to England, is his unapologetic adoption of the principle of affinity. New members would be admitted on the basis of the other members' sense that they were a good fit for the community.
Of course that principle would have to be guarded against the problem of elitism. How do we limit ourselves and safeguard our specific identity without becoming elitist?
Jul. 31 at 12:35pm | See in context
Also, Katie, I highly recommend bringing this subject up with Fr. Bob Oliver! I heard the superior of his order last evening in Minnesota: Br. Ken Apuzo. His order is all about community for both religious and lay members. Brotherhood of Hope and www.ccredeemer.org
Jul. 31 at 12:30pm | See in context
Wojtyla's The Person: Subject & Community sheds a bit of light on this topic http://www.crisismagazine.com/1994/the-person-subject-community-the-second-of-three-installments-of-one-of-wojtylas-most-important-essays
His points about the differences between personal participation vs. alienation are crucial to understanding community.
Yep, unfortunately, suffering is shared along with bearing fruit over time--but it is worthwhile
Jul. 31 at 11:41am | See in context
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