For several years, my office was just two blocks away from the Museum of Modern Art (MoMA). I used to go there during the lunch break and spend half an hour looking at one or two works of art. Can we digest more than a couple of masterpieces a day? I wanted to look at one or two great paintings without the tourist rush that turns museum halls into racetracks.
“And if Christ has not been raised, our preaching is useless and so is your faith,” St. Paul says.
During the last two weeks, our political world has been dissecting a sentence in the summary of the Mueller Report that Attorney General William Barr sent to the leaders of Congress: “The Special Counsel’s investigation did not find that the Trump campaign or anyone associated with it conspired or coordinated with Russia in its efforts to influence the 2016 U.S. presidential election.”
Recently, Bishop Nicholas DiMarzio announced that the Diocese of Brooklyn was joining the international 40 Days For Life campaign during the Lenten season. You can read all the details about the mission and the history of the campaign in its website: https://40daysforlife.com/
Last Saturday, as the St. Patrick’s Parade filled Fifth Avenue with the music of bagpipes and marching bands, Bishop Nicholas DiMarzio of Brooklyn and Cardinal Timothy Dolan, Archbishop of New York, greeted the crowd from the sidewalk in front of Saint Patrick’s Cathedral. It was a symbolic image – two descendants of Irish and Italian immigrants as the leaders of the Catholic Church in the greatest city of the world.
Last Sunday, 466 adults from Brooklyn and Queens met with Bishop Nicholas DiMarzio in the auditorium of the former Bishop Ford High School. They came together with their sponsors, families and friends to celebrate the Rite of Election, which is one of the last steps before becoming members of the Catholic Church.
Last week, 44 U.S. senators blocked a bill that would have punished doctors who don’t try saving the life of babies born alive during failed abortions. The 53–44 vote fell short of the 60 votes needed to move the bill forward.
In 2003, when the first wave of sexual abuse by the clergy in the United States was at its critical point, a Latin American priest visiting New York told me: “We in Latin America read the news about the sexual abuse scandals in the Church in the United States but we can’t understand how such a thing could happen.”
Last week, the Diocese of Brooklyn published the list of members of its clergy credibly accused of sexual abuse against minors. Reading the list and the accompanying statement is a sobering experience.
As we celebrate Black History Month, the State of Virginia has been thrown into turmoil by revelations that its governor and attorney general had dressed up in blackface in their youth. The scandal is another reminder that the long fight against racism in our country is not over.