Count Me on Board
Re “U.S. Bishops Condemn Trump’s Proposal to End ‘Chain Migration,’ Say It Threatens Families,” by J. D. Long-García (3/5): I consider myself a proponent of immigration and a never-Trump voter. However, I have to admit I like Mr. Trump’s immigration proposal. First, it goes further than President Obama in taking care of the DACA problem. Second, it strengthens the borders and reduces the incentives for the illegal immigration that created the DACA problem in the first place.
Third, the end to chain migration is only for extended family members, not for the nuclear family. But the best part is the movement to a merit-based system (like Canada’s and Australia’s) and to people who will admit to a love for the United States. Count me on board for this proposal.
Boredom in the Neighborhood
Re “Life in the Neighborhood,” by Matt Malone, S.J. (Of Many Things, 3/5): I was 9 years old when Mister Rogers was introduced on television. Being a fan of “The Bugs Bunny Show,” along with “The Munsters” and “The Flintstones,” I found “Mister Rogers’ Neighborhood” to be terribly boring.
Herman Munster was a monster, yet he was more real than Mr. Rogers. Millions of children grow up believing that life is always sweet and that all problems can be overcome by just being nice. I think such teaching harms children, giving them unrealistic expectations and making them unable to deal with conflict and adversity.
Hopeful for China
Re “Uniting the Chinese Church: Five Things to Consider,” by Drew Christiansen, S.J. (3/5): I am hopeful the Vatican’s new approach will lead to a dramatic growth of the Catholic faith in China. Catholicism has a hierarchical structure with conformity and accountability. The Chinese government likes that. Catholicism is a religion of peace, where supporting the government on secular matters poses little conflict (with the notable exception of the one-child policy, which is thankfully ending).
Disappointed and Disillusioned
“Western journalists have been too easily swayed by misleading accounts circulated by those opposed to an entente between Rome and Beijing,” writes Drew Christiansen, S.J. What a terrible and baseless accusation. His Eminence Cardinal Joseph Zen of Hong Kong has long been in contact with the underground church. Is America accusing him of spreading false accounts? Catholics in Hong Kong, including liberals and conservatives, have joined together to appeal to the Holy See to reconsider the agreement. An open letter appealing to bishops around the world has received more than a thousand signatures. So are we being “swayed”?
The author seems to think he understands China better than we do. Is it really that difficult for one single Jesuit to understand that today’s China is not the dynastic China Matteo Ricci traveled to? I have long admired the Holy Father and the Jesuits, to a degree that I once pondered the possibility of becoming one of them. But now I am extremely disappointed and disillusioned.
Mok Chit Wai
Re “The Uncertain Future of Catholic Ireland,” by James T. Keane (3/5): For all those cheerleading the possibility that Ireland will follow the path of Quebec, we have seen how sterile societies become that reject the church, both literally, in terms of unsustainably low birth rates, and in terms of lived experience.
Re “In Praise of Noise,” (Our Take, 3/5): What is most important about our Pope Francis is his effort to lead our church back to being a church that is based on mercy and love and not on self-perfection. Only a church that so thoroughly shows the divine love of Jesus can attract all who desire Jesus to greater communion and reconciliation.
S. J. Sparber
Mother of Us All
Re “Black, Broken, Beautiful,” by Mickey McGrath, O.S.F.S. (3/5): In Catholic elementary school in the 1970s, I was the recipient of many holy cards. One was called, I believe, Our Lady of the Cherry Blossoms and depicted Mary as Japanese. This image resonated powerfully with me at the time and still does. I often think how Mary, mother of us all, looks like us all. This thought gives me joy.
Mary Kelley Donovan