Confessions of an American Bead Counter, Part 2 – Crisis Magazine

Writer cuts to the core of a religio-cultural divide, crucial to understanding religion in our time:

In an earlier Crisis essay, I recalled the dismay at a social gathering when the host, a graduate of a Jesuit university, learned that his guest was a “bead counter.”

Liberal Christians approve, and are even known to practice, the social gospel; however, they suspect a conflict between corporal works and spiritual devotions such as the prayer for the dead at the end of each Hail Mary.

The word “pious” is now deployed with tongue in cheek or as a modifier before fool, fraud, and hypocrite.

Pray for the dead if you like, but it would do real good for the living if you put in an hour at the food pantry. Mother Theresa might have managed both, but the rank and file really must choose.

For that matter, understanding society in our time.

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