|But... Why? What purpose could such a contraption serve?|
Ever since the Second Vatican Council, The Church has seen the phrase "Catholic identity" enter it's lexicon in increasing extent. I go to a Catholic university, and we are dripping with that phrase. "We need more Catholic identity here" and "Catholic identity needs to improve" and "This campus has a weak Catholic identity" and so on. We drop the phrase like its nothing, and I wonder if we actually stop to ask ourselves "What does it mean to be Catholic? What is our Catholic identity?" because all too often, it is the words we use the most that we know the least about.
|First off, he never actually said that.|
Second, the presence or absence of this mug
in your possessions makes you no
more or less Catholic.
All too often, I find that when people use the term "Catholic identity", they really mean "Catholic brand". They want their university/high school/hospital/youth ministry/indoor and outdoor decor to look Catholic, usually to an overwhelming extent. In the same manner that a guy might make his man-cave a glittering tribute to Budweiser, Dale Earnhardt Jr., and Goodwrench tools, he could make it a glittering man-cave dedicated to Mary, St. Francis, and Padre Pio. Now, its perfectly good and holy to have great devotion to these people, but true Catholic devotion differs in style from a devotion to beer, NASCAR, and tools. People know our devotion to a certain brand or icon because we put its image on our person and property (or, in the case of one guy who passed away, on his tombstone. Busch Light cans, sandblasted in stone until the end of time.) Catholicism is not a brand. We're not one marketing scheme among others, nor are we one purchase among others in the religious marketplace. Catholicism isn't one option of religion among others, as much as our society (and many Catholics) seem to think.
|As it turns out, the Vatican actually is a city on a hill...|