Engaging the Culture of Abortion Print
Tuesday, 16 October 2007 20:41

Written by Keith Strohm

I know I have been scarce of late. I had planned to post on Barb Nicolosi's thoughts about what is needed to transform Hollywood, but our Blogtrix beat me to it. :)

One of the challenges of applying the Church's teaching to the secular world is the necessity of engaging the culture with a language that draws on our common human experience rather than relying solely on theological principles or revelation.

I've said many times that Vox Nova, a group blog where lay men and women wrestle with this cultural engagement, is one of the best blogs around. Recently, several members of Vox Nova engaged in conversation with a feminist blog (Feministe) regarding abortion and the possibility of finding common ground across the ideological divide of pro/anti abortion belief. The result has been a fascinating example of how people of good will can indeed find some common ground while recognizing real division that still exists between them. Of course, the conversation also demonstrated how the lack of good will can cause people to talk past each other and retreat into ideological fortresses.

I found this quote to be particularly moving:

What is important to note is that the “excellent” social positions advocated by many of the contributors at Vox Nova directly follow from the fundamental principles of what appears to Toonces as the women-hating Catholic Church. Catholic positions on peace, immigration, distribution of wealth, environmentalism all unfold from the implications of a robust faith in the Incarnation of Jesus Christ, who in his person, unites two natures–human and divine. In him, time and eternity, creation and Creator, the physical and the spiritual are eternally betrothed. And who stands at the center of this cosmic unity in Christ? Humanity, in the full scope of its essence and activity. Thus, a genuine Catholic is, indeed, “excellent” on social positions for this excellence excels in the very confidence of the Word made flesh. What I would propose is that if Karen agrees with much of the social concern at Vox Nova, yet argues for the right to abortion, then it is she who perhaps only “almost” gets it, for without the key component of protection of the unborn, social concern deteriorates into sham humanitarianism. I would suggest that it is the Catholic position–and I do not mean the partly Catholic position that is strong on liturgy and doctrine, but weak on social justice–that totally “gets it.”

Go here and check out the whole post (and subsequent comments).