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Ordained in 2011, Father Friel served for five years as Parochial Vicar at St. Anselm Parish in Northeast Philly. He is currently studying toward an STL in sacred liturgy at The Catholic University of America in Washington, D.C.
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“In spite of what it is currently called, the music of these songs is not modern: this musical style is not new, but has been played in the most profane places and surroundings (cabarets, music halls, often for more or less lascivious dances with foreign names). The people are led on to rock or swing. They all feel an urge to dance about. That sort of “body language” is certainly alien to our Western culture, unfavorable to contemplation and its origins are rather suspect. Most of the time our congregations, which already find it hard not to confuse the crochets and the quavers in a 6/8 bar, do not respect the rhythm; then one no longer feels like dancing, but with the rhythm gone to pieces, the habitual poorness of the melodic line becomes all the more noticeable.”
— Unnamed choirmaster (Northern France) circa 1986

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Fides et Ratio
published 15 November 2015 by Fr. David Friel

ERE TODAY not Sunday, we would be celebrating the feast of St. Albert the Great. From the time I venerated his tomb during World Youth Day 2005 in Köln, Albertus Magnus, O.P. has been a saint I much admire for his learning and balance of life.

Noteworthy as a philosopher and theologian (indeed, a “Doctor of the Church”), St. Albert was also well trained in the physical sciences. It is for this reason that he is the patron saint of scientists, among other things.

St. Albert had a stalwart appreciation for the compatibility of faith and reason. So, too, did St. John Paul II, who wrote a magnificent encyclical on the subject. The sense that faith and reason are not contradictory, but mutually supportive, is fundamentally lacking in much of modern society, and it needs to be reclaimed.

The tension and collaboration of fides et ratio has long been an interest of mine. This interest has found expression in numerous blog posts over the years, which I would like to share with you again today:

The Dawkins Delusion: Faith as Evidence (11 August 2013)

Faith Seeking Understanding: Anselm of Canterbury (21 April 2013)

Catholic Education & the Epiphany: The Hidden Teacher (10 January 2012)

The Resurrected Christ: We Are Witnesses of These Things (24 April 2012)

In honor of the feast of St. Albert the Great, I invite you to delve into the richness of our faith, which can never be separated from right reason.

“Faith and reason are like two wings on which the human spirit rises to the contemplation of truth.” (Pope St. John Paul II)