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Life Arts    H3'ed 1/30/14

Phyllis Zagano has drafted a pastoral letter about men for Pope Francis to issue

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Duluth, Minnesota (OpEdNews) January 30, 2014: Pope Francis continues to receive favorable media coverage. Now Rolling Stone features a cover story about him.


But certain Roman Catholic women have not been exactly thrilled with Pope Francis.


For example, at the National Catholic Reporter online, columnist Phyllis Zagano has published ""Humanity for All: A Pastoral Letter on Men' (draft)" (dated January 29, 2014).


I gather that she would like to see Pope Francis issue a pastoral letter on men along the lines she sets forth in her draft. But I don't think he's likely to do that. Nevertheless, I'd like to discuss something she says.


In the paragraph that she has numbered 1 in her draft of a proposed pastoral letter, she makes the following statements:


"1. Men are called to follow our Lord Jesus Christ and proclaim his Gospel in the midst of a complex world. This reality poses both opportunities and difficulties. Men must be measured by how they protect or undermine the dignity of all persons. Their decisions have consequences and moral content; they help or hurt people, strengthen or weaken family life, advance or diminish the quality of justice in our land. Yet many men do not understand what it is to be human. They do not know who they are."


For the moment, I want to skip over all of her sentences leading up to the last sentence.


In her last sentence she says that "many men" "do not know who they are."


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Thomas James Farrell is professor emeritus of writing studies at the University of Minnesota Duluth (UMD). He started teaching at UMD in Fall 1987, and he retired from UMD at the end of May 2009. He was born in 1944. He holds three degrees from Saint Louis University (SLU): B.A. in English, 1966; M.A.(T) in English 1968; higher education, 1974. On May 16, 1969, the editors of the SLU student newspaper named him Man of the Year, an honor customarily conferred on an administrator or a faculty member, not on a graduate student -- nor on a woman up to that time. He is the proud author of the book (more...)

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