Intentions of the Holy Father for April

Ecology and Justice. That governments may foster the protection of creation and the just distribution of natural resources.
Hope for the Sick. That the Risen Lord may fill with hope the hearts of those who are being tested by pain and sickness.

Eunice Kennedy Shriver Would Be Very Proud

Sometimes our "culture" can seem more homogeneous than it is, here in the U.S., because of our national media, which tends to project just a few key images. Those images are necessarily a bit stereotypical. Since we all watch the same shows, we tend to absorb, I think, the same national self-image.

But in reality, travel throughout the U.S. shows that even aside from superficial similarities and differences, there are really profoundly different cultures speckling our country.

When I was in Omaha for a summer, I noted something different there, as surely as I did when I lived for a semester in the forests of Westchester County, outside New York City. I note differences in Ohio and Michigan from Nebraska or Virginia. In reality, the very ways of thinking vary across the fifty states as surely as the landscapes.

The Catholic Key Blog posted this article, describing something different going on in the area around Kansas City, MO. One wonders how such a phenomenon starts in a given locality. There must be a story there. In any event, it is a beautiful thing to read about: a local community that somehow came to decide, without voting it seems, but just by knowing, that it would be accepting of people with handicaps. To be fair, America as a whole has come a long way in basic tolerance of people who are weird, unusual, burdened, or struggling. I can see it with my own sister Keelin. When we take her out nowadays, it seems to me that people are much more likely to be understanding (or at least tactfully quiet) of her funny noises or mannerisms than a decade or two ago. Very rarely do others mock her, as was common back then. That is a good thing. Still, something special seems to be happening in the KC-MO culture.

No comments: