Entries by Bill Droel

The Working Catholic: Silence

by Bill Droel Martin Scorsese was vaccinated with “a Catholic imagination,” writes Fr. Andrew Greeley (1928-2013). For Scorsese this means that the use of Catholic images and themes in many of his films is “not a matter of choice but of necessity.” The Catholicism of the films, Greeley emphasizes, is not churchy. Sorrow for sins […]

Go Home

The Working Catholic by Bill Droel Fr. Gustavo Gutierrez, OP of Peru is rightly receiving awards these days for his role in developing liberation theology. His 1973 book, A Theology of Liberation, signaled the end within Catholicism of the Western European theological monopoly. It is also now worthwhile to recall Ivan Illich (1926-2002). In early […]

The Working Catholic: Holy Capitalist

by Bill Droel A small number of Catholics more or less believes that capitalism is evil. On the other extreme an even smaller number of neoconservative Catholics believes that humanistic capitalism is God’s preferred system. Most Catholics implicitly take a micro-position, confining judgment to particular cases. Thus these Catholics might see holiness in the work […]

The Working Catholic: Heavenly Institutions

by Bill Droel Once upon a time there was an elderly monk “who wove a basket one day; the next day he unwove it,” Fr. John Courtney Murray, SJ (1904-1967) relates. “The basket itself did not matter; but the weaving and unweaving of it served as a means of spending an interval.” Only the soul […]

The Working Catholic: A Nostalgic Society

by Bill Droel After about 35 years of weekly gatherings, the members of my spiritual support group are now all retired. At our age we tend to recall the long gone car companies, the discontinued breweries and the great athletes of yesteryear. However, our group concludes that nostalgia is a temptation, that escapism is a […]

The Working Catholic: Broken Ladders

— by Bill Droel Bishop Ricardo Ramirez of Las Cruces, New Mexico, grew up in a small Texas town. There were six Mexican-American families on his block and others nearby. One large family “was unique,” writes Ramirez, a member of the Basilian Fathers, in Power from the Margins: the Emergence of the Latino in the Church […]

The Working Catholic: 501-C-3

According to an IRS rule, churches (and other non-profits) “are absolutely prohibited from directly or indirectly participating in or intervening in any political campaign.” The current Republican Party platform, reports Kevin Baker (N.Y. Times, 8/28/16), wants the rule overturned. The platform plank is a response to some evangelical organizations that desire more direct electoral influence. […]

The Working Catholic: Stealing Donuts by Bill Droel

“It is not a sin to steal food if you are starving.” That is what the Mercy Sisters at my grammar school told us some 50 years ago. It’s funny what one remembers. Of course, this lesson was reinforced for me every time I rode my bike over to a most delicious donut shop in […]

The Working Catholic: Jealous Crabs

by Bill Droel All ethnic groups experience a tension between the old world and the new world. First generation immigrant parents, for example, are distressed when their children prefer social activities among their schoolmates over family gatherings. The children are angry because these obligatory family events occur every weekend. Daughters say their parents are over-protective; […]

The Working Catholic: Baseball Lesson

by Bill Droel Chicago White Sox hurler Chris Sale forgot that he is a member of a powerful labor union. Instead of following normal grievance procedure, he recently used a scissors to voice his objection to a management decision and destroyed team uniforms. Further, Sale by-passed his union steward, outfielder Adam Eaton, by whining that […]