Sunday, March 02, 2008

Separate Competencies

As a lapsed Catholic, one recognizes certain symbols used by spiritual artists in an attempt to create visual images that mean to show the relevance in today’s world of the mysteries of the Creator. The liberal use of decoupaged layers of tissue paper in colors and shapes vaguely looking like celestial objects is a clear sign that some semi-cool monk is about to invite you to guitar mass.

So when an announcement for a Continuing Legal Education program arrived in Friday’s mail bearing this image:

I just knew we were headed toward a Catholic faith based experience. Sure enough, it was the Fourth Annual Faith & Law Lecture:

Well, the title didn’t seem so bad. After all, I’d be the first to agree that church and state do have separate competencies. The state ought to do those things a state does. Form a more perfect union, establish justice, insure domestic tranquility, provide for the common defense, promote the general welfare, and secure the blessings of liberty to ourselves and our posterity come immediately to mind. On the church side, promote the spiritual well being of its adherents, provide its ministers with mansions and airplanes, secure cover for its leaders and donor base seem to fit the bill.

However, one does wonder if the sponsors, MacLaurin Institute, the Christian Legal Society, MarsHill Students, or the Federalist Society know about an article the lecturer, Professor Douglas W. Kmiec, just recently published in Slate explaining why Barak Obama is the natural choice for Catholic voters.

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