Entries by Bill Droel

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 […]

The Working Catholic: Idolatry

The Working Catholic: Idolatry by Bill Droel David Cloutier teaches Catholic ethics at Mt. St. Mary’s University in Maryland. The students give a skeptical “oh hum” to the unit about Catholicism’s sexuality teaching. However, the unit on property and consumption is met with shock, outrage and even offense. “They seem to believe that so long […]

The Working Catholic: The Undeserving Poor? by Bill Droel

Too many people seem too sure about the causes and the cure for poverty. I hear it in the barbershop, at my favorite lunch spot and frequently at the bar. “If only they would get a job and quit living off my hard-earned money.” The adjectival hard-earned is always used. I also hear: “My family […]

Working Catholic: Fashion Statement by Bill Droel

Some philosophical and religious traditions look askance at fashion. Eastern religions, for example, focus on the transitory nature of the material world. They advise us not to get infatuated with appliances, jewelry or one’s wardrobe. Gnostic philosophy, which has at junctures influenced Roman Catholicism and other expressions of Christianity, says appearances are a deceptive illusion. […]

Urban Decline

The Working Catholic: Urban Decline? by Bill Droel It wasn’t so traumatic here when in the 1980s Los Angeles overtook Chicago, until then the Second City, in population. Last month, however, demographers caused a stir in Chicago; predicting that soon Houston will be the Third City, while Chicago will drop to number four. Ouch. The […]

The Working Catholic: 125 Years

The Working Catholic: 125 Years  by Bill Droel As anniversaries go, the 125th of modern Catholic social thought is a non-starter except perhaps in a small circle of specialists. Yet Catholic social thought offers a timely perspective on our society’s clash between what some people call our nanny-state and the libertarian free-for-all favored by others. […]