In the 2004 election, the Democrats dropped the ball on outreach to
faith-based voters. In 2006 and 2008 they did better, one of many things
that can plausibly (though hardly persuasively) be credited with their
wins. If you’re anything like me, you both appreciated this turns of
events and got very sick of hearing about it in the news. The Democrats
Have Found Their Faith!
In my Living By the Word
column on this week’s readings, I comment on Paul’s readiness to boast
of suffering, because it “produces endurance, and endurance produces
character, and character produces hope. . . .” Suffering is a signal
doorway through which the Holy Spirit enters our lives.
Acts 2 tells of those who, while seemingly drunk with the new wine of
the spirit, actually understand one another’s native languages. What if
we saw here a parable for listening to one another’s viewpoints? So
often, others’ native languages not only leave us bereft of
understanding but perpetuate our dislike and distrust of one another.
My dad and I fought constantly when I was a teenager. In my adolescent
mind, every boundary set by my parents was evidence that they did not
trust me or see me as the adult I obviously was. From my dad I inherited
the need to always be right, thus ensuring regular escalations of
arguments into legendary yelling matches.