Newspaper Archive of
Arkansas Catholic
Little Rock, Arkansas
November 4, 1990     Arkansas Catholic
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November 4, 1990
 

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PAGE'2 A NsAs CATHOLIC NOVI=MBER 4: j'9c)o I'm a baby-boomer and a child of Vatican II. My birth came at an amazing juncture in American Catholic history. Two realities mark the baby boom generation - rebellion and materialism. How did two seemingly mutually exclu- sive traits emerge from the same gen- eration? Failure, I think. And success. The rebellion of the sixties, having failed to significantly affect public policy and society, gave birth to a kind of fatal- ism which haunts us to this day. Having objected to the fiasco in Vietnam with no results in public policy, having ob- jected to racism with few results in so- ciety, we became discouraged. The world was in chaos. Most of us gave up and bought into the system. White baby boomers bought lots of other things, too - domestic goodies produced by the WW II generation - three bedrooms with a bath and a half; two cars; a television, and later two or three; an extension phone, then two or three extension phones with separate lines. Failure of rebellion sublimated itself in materialistic success. Same for Vatican II. So much of the spirit of Vatican II has failed to materi- alize, producing a counter-rebellion. Some of us won't shake hands at the sign of peace, will only take Commun- ion on the tongue, want the Latin Mass back'so badly that we miss out on the revelational mystery of the English Mass. Sometimes we're so concerned with form that we miss the content of Ca- tholicism. We want our old comfortable habits back; we don't want to explore the dynamic meaning of our faith. During this 25th anniversary of the completion of Vatican II we are called to remember the rebellion of that won- drous council, the rebellion of faith against fatalism, the rebellion of Christ against chaos. DKI-I ARKANSAS CATHOLIC iii pt)b~h~148 lir/la6 a yoar, Jot $12 pot year, by lhe C~hofk) Dioco~)of Little Rock, Arkansas Catholic, Inc., 2500 N. Tyler St., Lilfle Rock, AR 72207 (501) 664.-0340 [FAX (501) 8(M-9075]. PUBUSHER: Most Rev. Andrew& McDonald, Bishop MANAGING EDITOR: Rev./Ubert J. Schneider EDITOR : Deborah Hllard ADVERTISING I MARKETING DIRECTOR : Ron M. Hall PROOucTION MANAGER: Rev. Jim Schcatz CIRCULATION MANAGER : Agnes Krdnlg Third class postage paid at Lille Rock. AR. POSTMASTER : Send change of addre~, to: ARKANSAS CATHOUC, PO BOX 7417, LITILE ROCK, AR 72217. Busk ne(m hours are 8:30 to 4, M onday - Friday. Closed on v~ekends, Holy Days. and National Holidays. Offices are located In Morris Hall, SL John's Center, 2500 N. Tyler. kiffie Rock. AR, 72207. "9 To subscribe, send coupon with -- I check for $12 to the above address. I I IIName I I I il Address I ! I mendment 44 is like that law passed eons ago that forbade citizens to spit on the sidewalk. No one ever thinks about it, except, every once in a blue moon, when some judge from Timbuktu refers to the law just to keep such idiosyncrasies alive. Most Arkansans would be at a total loss to answer "what is Amendment 44?" Forget scratching your head and puzzling your brain -- either you know or you don't. And if, indeed, you are like most of us, you don't. Whether this fact can be attributed to Arkansas' poor history curriculum in high schools and colleges or a statewide disinterest in constitutional law, I'm not sure. But the fact that the law did One of his public appeals for the governorship in- eluded sending blacks 'back to Africa.' play some part in our state's civil fights era makes it worthy of some attention. Amendment 44 was authored by none other than ~ustice"JimJohnson during his bid for governor in 1954. If you don't recall Johnson, you might recall that one of his public appeals for the governorship included send- Janls Kearney Lunon ing blacks 'back to Africa.' Amendment 44 was an attempt by Johnson and other legislators who staunchly resisted integration, to ignore federally mandated public school integra- tion. In other words, they were satisfied with the past and didn't ........... " ...... want to see things change. The one most amazing thing about the amendment is that it became law before Orval Faubus made his historical stance against integration of schools in Little Rock. In fact, it is possible that Faubus' reaction was in reaction to Amendment 44... making Faubus a follower of the bandwagon, rather than .the ring leader. Amendment 44 states "The General Assembly of the State of Arkansas shall take appropriate action and pass laws opposing in every Constitutional ner, the unconstitutional dese tion decisions of May 17, 1954 May 31, 1955 of the United States Sfi" preme Court .... " "Such opposition shall continu steadfast until such time as such constitutional invasions or encroact~ merits shall have abated or shall have been rectified .... " Come November 6, voters will asked to dissect this idiocy and the 'right' decision. Voters who kn0V nothing of the history of the law will probably see this addendum to ballot as just one more unimportant law to be ignored or decided upon randomly. Whether it is truly unina" portant is a whole separate issue. fact that it should never have be@ passed into law is not even being at. gued. The fact is, as we attempt to remove all other remnants of segrega" tion and institutionalized racism our society, so must we erase this year-old law that remains a over Little Rock's past, and a road" block - no matter how subtle - to out future. (]anis Kearney Lunon is Arkansas State Press. "Reprinted ~ilh permission.) - WIIB " II@IIWI II- Msgr. George Higgins recently observed the 50th an- niversary of my ordination to the priesthood. The occasion prompted me to recall some of the more important changes in the life t of the Church during the past half century and, :i more specifically, since Vatican Council H. I would put the improved relationship between the Church - and Judaism very near the top of the list. There is no need at this point to review the tragic history of Catholic- Jewish relations before the council. Rev. Edwar.d Flannery did that remarkably well in his book, The Anguish of the Je~, Moreover, it wili not be necessary to summarize in detail the document dealing with Catholic-Jewish relations which came out of the council. I would prefer,to center upon that document's purpose and, in the open- ended spirit that pervades it, to look to the future rather than the past. I will take my lead from the late Rabbi Arthur Gilbert, who in 1968 published a book-length study of the document from the Jewish point of view. Gilbert, like myself and many other 6bservers, had certain reservations about the wording and the scope of the document, and certain misgivings as to whether it would achieve its stated pur- pose. He was optimistic in this regard, however. "God's spirit," he wrote, "cer- tainly was present in the council's de- liberations." Protestants, Orthodox Christians,Jews and people of good will everywhere werex touched by il achievement; he said. "They were moved to explore, in their own way, their relation purpose and their understanding will. "Now, God willing, by the qualitY our associations with each other the courage with which we shall seekt repair the world, we may increase experience of godliness among "To be a blessing unto people See "Higglns,'i next