I Agree

Thus it seems important to accelerate a serious debate within American Catholicism on whether the Church ought not pre-emptively withdraw from the civil marriage business, its clergy declining to act as agents of government in witnessing marriages for purposes of state law.

If the Church were to take this dramatic step now, it would be acting prophetically: it would be challenging the state (and the culture) by underscoring that what the state means by “marriage” and what Catholics mean by “marriage” are radically different, and that what the state means by “marriage” is wrong. If, however, the Church is forced to take this step after “gay marriage” is the law of the land, Catholics will be pilloried as bad losers who’ve picked up their marbles and fled the game—and any witness-value to the Church’s withdrawal from the civil marriage business will be lost. Many thoughtful young priests are discussing this dramatic option among themselves; it’s time for the rest of the Church to join the conversation. 

-George Weigel

The war on gay marriage is a war we will loose because we keep engaging on their terms. Marriage is far more than a civil institution. It is high time the Christian church, Catholic and Protestant, acknowledged this and refuses to perform civil service marriages. It would rip the carpet from under those who are attacking marriage, it would reclaim what we do from the state and put it back in its proper religious footing.

“You talk about surgical strikes,” the Guardian’s Harriet Sherwood said to a senior Israeli official at a news conference in Jerusalem on Sunday afternoon. “I’ve actually just come here straight from Gaza, and the idea that the strikes are surgical is, um, not quite accurate.

Read more: http://world.time.com/2012/11/19/the-israeli-assault-on-gaza-how-surgical-is-surgical/#ixzz2CivoBz5N

World

On the day they buried Ahmed Jabari, the Hamas commander blown apart in what Israel calls a “targeted killing,” a man named Jihad Misharawi cradled the corpse of his 11-month-old son, killed when an apparently errant Israeli shell pierced the roof of their Gaza home. The father’s grief was captured in a compelling Associated Press photograph that Misharawi might have appreciated in his professional capacity: he works for the BBC as a photo editor, the job that involves deciding what images to send out to the world when the story becomes the death of civilians, as it is becoming in Gaza.

Until Sunday, the number of Palestinian bystanders killed in the Israeli assault on the crowded, poverty-stricken stretch of sand may have been as low as 16, barely half the number of fatalities among militants across the first four days. That proportion, if it had stood, would have been exceptional…

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