History, Slavery, Legacy and Today

The Washington Post recently published an article that is an informative and fascinating read. You should take 15-20 minutes to read:  Their wealth was built on slavery. Now a new fortune lies underground by Julie Zauzmer Weil. In the picture above, people mentioned in the article include, clockwise from top left: Isaac Coles, Carole Coles Henry, Edward Coles, Walter Coles V

Image credit: Washington Post – Justin Ide for The Washington Post, Washington Post illustration with original sources from the New York Public Library, Library of Congress with photographs by Joshua Lott of the Washington Post

Original article: Editing by Lynda Robinson, photo editing by Mark Gail and Mark Miller, copy editing by Vanessa Larson, design by Michael Domine.

A next step in the plan

Today we celebrate the Solemnity of the Immaculate Conception. It is a very Catholic celebration that is often misunderstood outside Catholicism (and to be fair sometimes among Catholics). In popular culture there are lots of misconceptions about the Immaculate Conception. In TV and movies when the woman wonders how her pregnancy is possible, “it just can’t be…” there is some character who comments, “Oh, another Immaculate Conception?”  But the conception of Jesus in Mary’s womb by the power of the Holy Spirit is referred to as the Virgin Birth. In correctly-expressed Catholic theology, our celebration, the Immaculate Conception refers to the conception of Mary, the one we honor with the title the Blessed Virgin Mary. If you would like to read about the development of the celebration and the dogma of the Immaculate Conception, you can find that information here. Continue reading

A History: The Immaculate Conception

The Immaculate Conception of the Venerable One...It’s important to understand what the doctrine of the Immaculate Conception is and what it is not. Some people think the term refers to Christ’s conception in Mary’s womb without the intervention of a human father; but that is the Virgin Birth. Others think the Immaculate Conception means Mary was conceived “by the power of the Holy Spirit,” in the way Jesus was, but that, too, is incorrect. The Immaculate Conception means that Mary, whose conception was brought about the normal way, was conceived without original sin or its stain—that’s what “immaculate” means: without stain. The essence of original sin consists in the deprivation of sanctifying grace, and its stain is a corrupt nature. Mary was preserved from these defects by God’s grace; from the first instant of her existence she was in the state of sanctifying grace and was free from the corrupt nature original sin brings. Continue reading