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Showing posts from 2009

Is it right to call the church 'evil' ?

TCTheTiger, a frequent poster on the Holy Post Blog of the National Post objected recently to someone referring to the Catholic Church as 'evil'. Here is my response to him. I would appreciate comment. Thanks, Fr. Tim TCTheTiger:  You write: "It's exactly like saying since Hitler said 1+1=2, it must be wrong."  Forgive me but I have no idea what that is supposed to mean. If O/C claimed that all clergy are evil, then I think it's more than fair to say that was offering such a statement as a rhetorical flourish or said in the heat of argument. He has certainly not said such a thing in his many exchanges with me.  Aside for this, to a degree he is correct.  You must remember that the Catholic Church exists as a spiritual and an earthly form. The former being our inspiration and goal, and the latter is as sinful and evil as any other earthly enterprise. It is only by admitting the reality of these two entities that we Catholics can hold true to the pr

Bonne et heurese année (Happy New Year)

Le Jour de l'an has traditionally been a time of great  importance within French-Canadian families as it was the occasion when children would ask for their father's blessing. Alas this is another tradition that has been lost to common knowledge with the decline of the Catholic Church in Quebec and now throughout much of Canada. An opportunity to strengthen family ties is lost to the omni-present hangover that afflicts so many in the wake of "ringing in" the New Year. The faith assumptions of many bishops and priests who are "of a certain age", (at least within Canada, pre-1965) are no longer understood or even held as relevant by the majority of the generation that is now coming into power in the political, social and economic spheres of western societies. I fear that now is the time when the sad truth of Richard Neuhaus' maxim ("that which is permitted will soon be found to be obligatory") will be realized. This mean that the Church will soo

Prayer for Priests

I post here a copy of the Prayer for Priests that has been issued within the Archdiocese of Vancouver. I have added a stanza which I highlight in italics. I commit to offering this prayer ever day before I celebrate mass as I ask you as reader to do the same. We priests are very much in need of every spiritual weapon at our disposal in these evil times. “God our Father, look with mercy and love upon those your Son has chosen to be ministers of your Word and Sacraments, and ardent but gentle shepherds of your flock. As spiritual fathers of those entrusted to their care, keep them faithful in obedient service to you. Enkindle in our priests the fire of your love, so that they will seek nothing but your greater glory and the salvation of souls. We pray that Mary, Queen of the Holy Rosary, will wrap her mantle around our priests, draw them closer to your heart day by day and inspire many young men to answer your call. May God’s mercy and justice be made manifest in their commitm

The best and worst news stories of 2009

Phil Lawlor of Catholic Culture website shares his opinion re: the top five worst and most positive news stories of 2009 (from an American perspective). It is hard to argue with his choices, given that there might have been other stories that may have greater local interest to some.

What "Evangelical" really means

Nathan Martin writes on the First Things blog about an interview with Os Guinness on the true meaning of 'evangelicalism'. His wisdom helps to purify the term from the American understanding which confuses the spiritual with the political (The "Christian Right"). It is in the historical sense of the word that we find its true power. If you are looking for another work which explores the same ground, make Richard John Neuhaus' last work American Babylon: Notes of A Christian Exile (Basic Books, 2009) the first book your read in 2010!

... and then there was one

Two more Irish Bishops named in the Murphy Report have resigned, leaving only one other who still remains as Ordinary of his diocese... and he says that he will not resign. It is truly heartening as a priest to finally see Bishops taking responsibility for their actions and not leaving it to the priests to carry the load of this scandal. I sincerely hope that this attitude becomes "des rigeur" among the the episcopate, not that I hold them in any disrespect or wish them any ill, but it is a necessary step in winning back the confidence of the faithful. I offer my promise and prayers and heartfelt appreciation to these Bishops who are taking the step of resigning. Putting the interests of the Church and the faith ahead of their own demonstrates a true Christian witness that is sorely needed in these troubled times.

A Merry Christmas Card for my friends & family

Merry Christmas to everyone. As these last few hours of peace and calm pass before the chaos, confusion and crises of the Family Christmas Eve Masses befalls all clergy, my thoughts are not of the trials ahead but of gratitude and prayerful thanksgiving for the souls I have encountered since I began this virtual journey three months ago. Enjoy a moment and remember the joy that filled our hearts as children, as we tried to stay awake to hear those reindeer hooves on the roof, only to wake before the sun and discover that Santa had indeed been there! Jesus is indeed the reason for the season, but Santa was fun too. Click on the title to this post, and Merry Christmas! Fr. Tim Moyle Where the Rubber Hits the Road

Does Science provide evidence for the truths of faith?

From my earliest days, I have always been fascinated about the relationship between science and religion. I was taught that both disciplines taught the “truth” about creation so I always assumed that they would provide complimentary information and should not be viewed as contradictory bodies of knowledge. It is only natural then that I would look at the discoveries and developments of each in relationship to the other. It was with great anticipation then that I picked up David Bodanis’ book E=MC 2 :A Biography of the World's Greatest Equation . I was not disappointed. Energy as a concept was developed by Michael Farady when he posited that there existed invisible forces that accompanied magnetism and electricity. This began a line of research that demonstrated that this energy interacted with other elements and thus could be seen as an independent entity of its own. Antoine Lavoisier discovered that matter was a closed system, which is to say that matter can never be destroy

Great debate from National Post: Church stand of Marriage & homosexuality

by Outlaw_CA Dec 22 2009 11:48 PM The Catholic Church teaches that the Pope is infallible at closely defined times. The Pope is only infallible when he, in union with the body of bishops, solemnly teaches that a doctrine as true. This comes from the words of Jesus to Peter (the first Pope) and the Apostles (the first bishops), "Whatever you bind on earth shall be bound in heaven" (Matthew 18:18) and "He who hears you hears me" (Luke 10:16). At all other times the Pope can be just as sinful as you and me and be in need of forgiveness. I have never really believed that any human being could be infallible and that explains all the contradictions in the Bible, as well why some things in the Bible are in fact dead wrong. Should we accept that then many questions arise, the first comes to my mind is that just because body of bishops and the Pope are in agreement is important but not necessarily good enough reason to accept that

Archbishop Martin (Dublin) seems to get it!

Archbishop Martin has intimated that each of the Bishops named in the Dublin report on clergy sexual abuse should resign as Ordinary of their respective Dioceses. Not only is it refreshing that a Bishop is calling his brother bishops to take responsibility for these abuses, and for the neglectful way that they dealt with the victims of abusing priests. He seems to understand that the laity need this step to believe that the Church is serious about taking responsibility for its misdeeds... and that the Bishops need to demonstrate this by assuming this responsibility personally. Click on the title on this post to be taken to the story on the Catholic Culture which will offer links to more source documents on this story. Here's hoping that his example will spread among the Bishop's world wide!!

Applying business practices to faith ... and it works?

This link will take you to an article published in the Globe and Mail which argues that Evangelical Christians in the USA are using standard business practices, and this accounts for their success (especially their megachurches). It's worthy on consideration. After all, did Christ not tell us to use the wisdom of the day to promote his Kingdom?

Vatican announcement

Today the Vatican published a list of people who are either to be declared "saints" or on that "heavenly path" . Most of the subsequent comment that has followed this announcement has focused upon the declaration of Pope John Paul II and Pius XII as venerable (lived lives of virtue) but for Canadians there is great joy with the inclusion of Brother Andre Bessette of St. Joseph's Oratory (Montreal) among those to be declared as saints. Brother Andre is well known among Canadian Catholic as he is thought of as being the agent of many miracles of healing at the small oratory that he founded in Montreal. Given the humility that Andre demonstrated in life, it seems only appropriate that the declaration of his eligibility for canonization would be a hidden gem among the news declaring the giants of John Paul and Pius XII as venerable.

There are happy priests!!!

Fr. Michael Smith (a 'happy soldier' in his own right) sent me an uplifting article today that was published by the Zenit news service about a priest from St. Louis in which he expresses his joy in ministry of over 55 years. Sometimes I might put out the image of being dour or unhappy by the negative issues that I often deal with in these pages. Rest assured folks that I too can state unequivocally that my 20+ years as a priests has been a very positive and happy experience for me. I cannot imagine that I would ever want to do anything else!! If God calls one to such a priestly vocation, happiness is a sure fruit of this ministry. I pray that more men will heed this divine invitation and experience the joy of the priesthood that I see in my life, and in the life of most priests that I have come to know.

I've been challenged to make a statement about how the church responds to the various sex abuse scandals

One of the things that I do each day in my spare time between services and appointments is participate in various comment threads of major Canadian news websites such as the National Post. Today I was challenged to make a definitive statement about how the various sex abuse scandals (pedophilia and sexual abuse of religious sisters) should be handled by a poster who goes by the handle of Outlaw_ca. He put the challenge as follows: In case valid cases how many priests and bishops were fired and were they referred to authorities for prosecution. I think your and church mind set is protection of the Church, I am more concerned about the fair treatment of victims. Why has this been hidden from you for all these years. Now that you know what do you plan to do? Would you ask the Vatican to provide the answers and keep us posted on your blog? Here is the response I offered to him in those same National Post threads. O/C: You are absolutely correct. If priests or bishops are positiv

Bishops CAN have an effective voice IF they are willing to SPEAK UP in the Public Square

US News and World Report publishes an article today commenting on the renewed and strengthened voice that the American Bishops have had on the Health Care debate in the United States, particularly with respect to abortion. It seems that the American Bishops, buoyed by the strong and public witness of what I refer to as the John Paul II Bishops, have been able to influence legislators and public opinion. They have done this through effective lobbying and public statements CLEARLY and FORCEFULLY reminding politicians of the moral imperative of protecting life. A major part of their strategy has been to make full use of the instruments of media that this modern age provides. Another example of this new willingness to use the levers of the media can be seen in the Sacramento Diocese where they are launching a television advertising campaign to reach out to lapse Catholics, inviting them back to Church this Christmas. It is my prayer that the Bishops of Canada and elsewhere might

What will they think of next?

One of the blogs i check every day is the Catholic Dialogue site. While I don't agree with everything they post (some posts are a little off-balanced, especially when it comes to Fr. Michael Prieur and St. Joseph's Health Care Center) it usually offers something that is thought provoking and interesting. Today there were two posts the caught my eye. First there is a report on something that claims to be a device that will allow the distribution of communion in a new hygienic fashion . It has got to be one of the stupidest items I have ever seen. It reminds me of the days immediately following the Second Vatican Council when changes came at Catholic fast and furious. After one mass when we had witnessed some strange new development (I can't remember what it was - there were so many) I remember my father saying that eventually we will see people dispensing hosts from the type of device that bus drivers used to wear on their belts to make change. I am glad that Dad has alr

British government intrusion into Jewish faith

I have been receiving some emails lately suggesting that I am too concerned about the intrusion of the state into the affairs of the Church. This has caused me to look at whether or not there is any truth into their concerns. Then I stumbled across this tidbit on the the First Things blog. It presents the fact that a British court has now decided that Jewish law is "racist" and gives to the courts the right to determine who is a "Jew". I think that I was (sadly) right all along.

Quebec used to be the most Catholic of Canadian Provinces... now it's the least!

Barbara Kay of the National Post writes on the new "religion" that has taken root in Quebec with the blessings of the provincial government. Quebec is the harbinger of what is to come in the rest of Canada unless we learn the lessons of the Church's mistakes in that province. Please pray that our Bishops will be willing to learn from their experience.

Vatican official explains the difference between just and unjust discrimination

Rev. Philip J. Bené, J.C.D., Legal Attaché for the Permanent Observer Mission of the Holy See to the United Nations offers a defense for the right of Christians to "discriminate" in its hiring practices and in its religious practices. Click on the title to this post to be taken to the article posted on

Human Rights Commission menaces Christian organization (again)

Once again the Canadian Human Rights Commission has set its perverted gaze upon a Christian organization, this time threatening "Christian Horizons" with the loss of its charitable status since it does not limit its ministry to just Christians. Christian Horizons, an organization that provides residential care services to severely handicapped persons, has been brought before the H.R.C. by an employee who was dismissed for living in a lesbian relationship despite signing a Christian code of conduct statement as part of her employment that forbid employees from living in such a non-biblical relationship. The ruling of the HRC tribunal was that since Christian Horizons did not limit itself to providing care to only Christians, it could not demand that its employees live in accordance with biblical principles. What's truly bizarre is that is the same HRC that previously stated that the organization could not place such a condition upon its employees UNLESS they signed suc

Just-War Tradition explained

George Weigel, the man that John Paul II acclaimed to be the greatest lay theologian of the 20th century, has written a great concise post on the National Review which is also posted here on the Ethics and Public Policy Center website on the proper understanding and origin of the Just War Tradition. It is MUST READ for anyone interested in the proper understanding of this essential element of Catholic theology, particularly when our western democracies are engaged in Afghanistan and Iraq. Thank you George! Clearly the late Pontiff knew what he was talking about when he spoke so glowingly of you.

Balance is a hard thing to find in avoiding the Super Catholic Syndrome

Teresa Tomen writes on Catholic Exchange about something that is all too evident within the Catholic Blogosphere: a lack of balance that grows from the desire to be a "Super Catholic". Those of us who are doing are best to try and follow the teachings of the Church know enough not to take our cues from the secular society, especially when it comes to this time of year in terms of what the world says is important. We try not to get sucked into the culture of consumerism and commercialism, of what has become society’s idea of the reason for the season; the emphasis on the material instead of the spiritual. Many of us have been there done that in our former lives and had our own “V 8″ moments so to speak. All of that said, some of us are now striving so hard to be good Catholics that we don’t allow for balance. We are replacing that former drive for materialism with the push for perfectionism. She hits the nail right on the head! Her advice would be well taken by thos

The Soviet Socialist Republic... of Massachusetts?

An eight year old elementary student in Tauton Massachusetts was suspended from school and sent to a psychiatrist for drawing a picture of Jesus on the cross as his submission for an assignment to draw something that reminds him of Christmas. Thankfully the psychiatrist said it was safe for the child to return to school as he was not "a threat" to himself or others! I appreciate that a teacher may have over-reacted, but surely someone in the school system would have seen how inane sending the child for a mental health evaluation simply for expressing belief in Jesus before the student was actually subjected to a mental evaluation! So, no longer is it sufficient to take Christ out of Christmas, but now it's a sign of mental illness to express a belief that Christ, by his birth, death and resurrection is "the reason for the season"? Sending people to mental health professional and institutions for expressing their faith was something that we associated with

SoCon Blog posts insightful piece on the role of media in affecting culture

Paccheo, at posts an insightful article reflecting upon the role of the media in forming societal values. As I have previous written in the initial posts on this blog, Marshall McLuhan's contention that the "medium is the message" most likely reaches in fulfillment with the advent of mass media and the internet. I may not agree with the manner in which he sums up his argument in the last paragraph of the article (sounds to me like he is calling for a return to the days of 'Christendom") but Paccheo does present much for people of faith to consider.

Population control and answer to climate change?

The U.N. Climate summit in Copenhagen has been debating and discussing how nations should address the issue of climate change (formerly known as 'global warming'. One of the more disturbing suggestions to deal with the issue is for a global policy which would facilitate a reduction in the number of humans on the planet. Diane Francis of the National Post joins her voice to this suggestion when she called for the world wide implementation of China's 'one child' policy. This is just another example where science appears to spit up inane suggestions to deal with a supposed crisis. Not only would this be a GROSS infringement of human rights, but the suggestion is racist and reeks of the type of science that can best be exemplified by the Nazi fascist regime of the 1930's and 40's. I use the terms racist and fascist very deliberately for when one explores the models and examples these scientist propose, it is inevitable that the sacrifice of life is usually t

Just how big is the universe?

Every now and then there is a science article that provides an insight into the nature of things that serves to reinforce Christian belief. The Globe and Mail has published such an article entitled "Where does the universe end?". I draw your attention to following quote: The Universe doesn't end, as counter-intuitive as this seems. Once again, language confuses concepts. We speak of a ‘Big Bang' but don't mean a ‘bang' like an explosion, which has a centre and a shock wave that moves spherically out into air from the explosion. Instead, the ‘Big Bang' happened everywhere in the Universe at once, with no centre. Shortly after the ‘Big Bang', density and pressure of the Entire Universe were the same everywhere. So, pressure difference could not possibly create an explosion. The ‘Big Bang' wasn't a bang at all. Humm... so the universe appeared everywhere all at once. Sounds like the Genesis account to me.

Remember the Club of Rome?

Back in the 1970's there was an influential groups of academics and power brokers who were advocating for the immediate need for stringent population control, based upon their projections that the earth would be unable to sustain the human population. They are called the Club of Rome . Their message is being heard again in the halls of the Copenhagen Conference. This alarmist message is being put forward to justify the limitation of the human right to reproduce. Check out this story at ZENIT for more details.

Scriptural lesson on religious dialogue

Michael Brandon, on his blog " Freedom Through Truth " shares a wisdom he heard from his parish priest, Fr. John Pirt of the Diocese of London on this Third Sunday of Advent. Fr. John was a seminarian one year in advance of me at St. Peter's Seminary. I always thought he was a fine fellow. I appears that he is wise as well. The lesson that he drew from the Gospel of the day is an inspiration for those who are dealing with the great questions that exist between the various faiths of today. Thanks to him, and to Michael for sharing this wisdom with us. Fr. Tim Our priest Father John Pirt, preached a good homily about the Gospel today. He spoke of the 3 different types of people that came to John, the soldiers, the tax collectors, and the main stream of Jews. Each group, John met them where they were at. The soldiers, who were not Jews, but Roman occupiers, were able by their power to take from the people, and John told them to not to extort, nor falsely accuse and t

Parental rights disappearing in Germany

If there is one thing that has always been a foundational principle of law in our western democracy, it has been the right of parents to make decisions regarding their children. Alas, this bedrock right is now under attack. Lifesitenews is promoting a story about eight German parents who are going to jail because the held their children home from state sponsored sex education classes. It seems that in Germany, the state has decided that it possesses the right to make these decisions instead of parents. This should raise alarms throughout the western world, especially among Christians. Time and time again we are told that we do not have the right to "impose" our views on others - and for the most part, Christians have respected this societal convention. With this decision in Germany, it is clear that the forces of secularism do not believe that they need offer the same right to Christians. This is just another example of a "canary in the coal mine"; a harbinge

The question of religious freedom throughout the world

The topic of "religious freedom" has come to the fore via the Swiss referendum banning the construction of minarets. In the National Post's religion blog (Holy Post) there has been an extensive discussion on this story . Essentially the debate boils down to should Christians adopt a position of militant reciprocity ("you can have your rights here when we can have our rights there") or should our approach be one that calls to the greater angels within Islam so as to call them to the theological/cultural developments to permit the acknowledgment of religious plurality. It is in this light that I recommend an article published by the American Spectator which examines the States that infringe upon the right to religious freedom. This article gives some "real world" perspective with which to assess the challenges that theists face in asserting their right of belief.

The Great Consolidator

The American Spectator has published an article focusing on the steps that Pope Benedict XVI has taken to bring back into full communion various groups that have split from the Roman Communion. A great deal of ink has been spilled over his overtures to Anglicans, but they point out as well the fact that Pope Benedict has also prepared the way for reunion with traditionalists and with the Orthodox Church. These steps are simply the actualization of what he said that he was going to do in his first homily as pontiff. We can only hope that his efforts will come to fruition in his lifetime.

CCCB (Canadian Bishops Conference) publishes sex abuse policy document

I am often saying that the Canadian Bishops (all Bishops for that matter) need to be judged not on how they dealt with sex abuse cases in the past, but by how they are living up to their policy today. So here is a link that will take you to the official policy of the Canadian Bishops. Use it to measure and determine whether or not the Church is currently practicing what it preaches!

British legislation menaces Church right to choose their own clergy

British Bishops have warned the Parliament that legislation that is currently before it might be used to force the Catholic Church to ordain women and married men. What protection that exists is framed as a position where the majority of work time is sacramental, ie)priest = agent of sacraments. But as a clergyman I know that the majority of my time is spent taking care of more pedantic affairs such as caring for church property, paperwork etc., or at best religious work that a lay person can also accomplish, visiting the sick, cathechetical instruction or sacramental preparation. Given the growing adversarial relationship that exists between the forces of faith and the forces of secularism, is it wise to vest in one side or the other the right to so profoundly and directly impose their will upon the other? Experiences in Quebec clearly demonstrate the folly of the Church accepting the promise of good faith or favorable interpretation of the language of the legislation. For issue a

Different standards for Catholic vs Protestant clergy offenders

Today's National Post published an article about another Newfoundland Priest who has been charged with child pornography charges. The one difference this time is that the alleged offender is a priest of the Anglican Church of Canada and not Roman Catholic. Actually, there is another notable difference. In the 24+ hours that this story has been posted on the NP website, not one single comment of condemnation has appeared in the response to these sordid revelations. When it is a Roman Catholic clergyman, within mere minutes the vitriolic avalanche of comments begin to accumulate in the comment threads, usually hitting 100+ responses/comments within the first 24-36 hours. This most certainly is the case whenever the Lahey scandal incites a new report within the pages of the National Post. Now that the clergyman is a married man with children... and protestant... the story passes without a single comment. But is this one case not insufficient to justify a charge of general prej

"The Final Call" starts a multi part investigation into the manner which the Church has treated victims of "the long lent" of sex abuse cases

Ashahed M. Muhammad -Asst. Editor- of The Final Call , ( a black Muslim website/paper) begins a series of investigatory pieces examining the manner in which the church has treated the victims of clergy sex offenders. This first installment raises the issue of race, but this is an argument that is well refuted. However, the subject soon moves to the manner in which victims are being dealt with, and the legal/financial strategies of some Dioceses, a far more damning situation for the church and its Bishops. Whereas the State has the obligation to enforce the criminal law of the land - using the legal system to assign guilt and determine levels of compensation, whenever the Church uses the same protections offered to any legal entity in its defense, or if it adapts the tactics and standards of lawyers and insurance executives (and yes, even criminals), it is pilloried once again. Yet, the question that I believe should guide the hearts of church men is to determine what is in the best

Bishop Jim Wingle (St. Catherines) addresses Catholic obligations to Life issues

Bishop Jim Wingle (St. Catherines Diocese) has granted an excellent interview in the pages of his Diocesan Newspaper on the obligations of Catholics to work for the promotion of Catholic values, especially those that fall under the heading of "Life issues" (abortion, euthanasia, embryonic stem cell research). That a bishop would call for Catholics to work for these causes is hardly new, however Bishop Wingle points out that the battle needs to be waged on the level of our self-definition as Catholic. Put simply, we need to sell the argument that we are not "anti-choice" but "pro-life". In other words, we have let the opponents of Catholic values define us as "negative". Thank you Bishop Wingle (which for the sake of full disclosure I add that he was originally a priest of our Pembroke Diocese before he was taken away for greater things)! Your witness, voice and counsel in these issues are welcome by all who work for the cause of faith and lif

How to define the "Catholic Identity" of higher schools of learning

" Inside Higher Ed " presents an interview with Rev. John C. Haughey, a senior fellow at Woodstock Theological Center, Georgetown University, and the author of the book Where is Knowing Going? in which he explores what it means to be "Catholic" as a college or university. His insights are worthy of consideration, as are the comments that follow the posting. We have entered a time in which we as a Church will no longer be afforded the "benefit" of our good intentions (as slim as these blessings are today) and we will have to clearly identify our "brand" if we intend to effectively compete in the marketplace of today's value systems. Pure, unfettered self-autonomy is the zenith to which the majority aspire. The prescripts and teachings of Catholic morality will literally need to to be "sold" to citizens in today's consumer culture. Thankfully we've faced this same challenge before. In fact, this desire to be our own god i

Holy Father hale and healthy!

A well connected friend of mine who is currently in Rome, assures me that there is no foundation to the speculation as to the Holy Father's health. This is good news for all people of good faith. Let's not forget to remember him in prayer each and every day that God keep him in good health until the end. Amen.

Please comment on the pro-life argument presented below

Caitrin, one of the friends of this blog, posted an excellent comment in the Communion to Pro-Life story. I post it below, together with my response. I invite comment upon my analysis of the situation. Thanks for your help in exploring these arguments and suggestions. Fr. Tim caitrin said... Justin Trudeau seems to think that he can support abortions rights and call himself Catholic. Fr. Tim, people hate pro-lifers. The church hierarchy is not too fond of pro-lifers or "conservative' catholics ( a descriptor I dislike because truly there is only orthodoxy or heterodoxy) either. So it is not surprising that politicians, who want people to like them, abjure church teaching. The liberal party has long ago become hostile to pro-life members. To proclaim your pro-life beliefs is to instantly discredit yourself as a politician in this country. My husband and I have attended the Life Chain for many years and have brought along our children from very young ages. Many ye

This is what I've been trying to say....

  R.J. Rushdoony is not an unblemished voice in the concert of Christian social values: the conclusions that he held as orthodox and proper views would today result in his universal condemnation... and rightly so. But in at least this snippet of text he captures the essence of something very important. If you can free yourself from his misapplied labels of "conservative"  or "radical humanists" (think of them as little more than algebraic expressions, "A" or "B") we can see an insightful piece of societal analysis in the ongoing cultural and religious exchanges between Islamic and Christian faiths and the importance of defending creedal values. "Every social order has an implicit creed, and this creed defines and informs it. When a social order begins to crumble, it is because the basic faith, its creed has been undermined. But the political defense of that order is usually made the first line of defense; it becomes the conservative positi

Midnight Mass time change at Vatican: Is the Pope ill?

While it easy for any priest to understand the appeal of an earlier Christmas eve celebration than the traditional midnight hour, it is surely at least a reminder that we must continue to pray daily in support of our Holy Father. As priests, we owe it to him, the faithful and ourselves to pray that the successor of Peter be safe and in good health. Not many of us could carry his workload and stress in our 60's, let alone as he is on the northern side of his 80's. With the aid of our guardian angels and the intercession of Mary, Mother of all priests he continues apace with his efforts to guide the barque of Christ through these complicated times. As ethnic, cultural and religious stresses are rising around the world (see National Post articles on Swiss Minaret issue), the strong voice of reasoned faith such as animates the soul of Joseph Ratzinger, Pope Benedict XVIth is surely needed. Still... midnight mass at 10 pm? Link to article in Referenced Article Box

Drawing strength and inspiration from the witness of our fore brothers in the priesthood of Jesus Christ

by Archbishop Terrence Prendergast    * ( Taken from New Jesuit Review ) There is a phrase in the Epistle to the Hebrews that I have always associated with the missionaries of Huronia because it is used in the readings proper to the Jesuit celebration of the Martyrs Feast.  In telling how people lived in faith, the author of Hebrews speaks of some wandering over the face of the earth while yearning for their heavenly homeland:  Some were tortured, refusing to accept release, in order to obtain a better resurrection.  Others suffered mocking and flogging and even chains and imprisonment.  They were stoned to death, they were sawn in two, they were killed by the sword; they went about in skins of sheep and goats, destitute, persecuted, tormented—of whom the world was not worthy.  They wandered in deserts and mountains and in caves and holes in the ground (Hebrews 11:35b-38). Our evangelist is giving a description of how, throughout salvation history, people signalled that the

Tiger Woods story

The National Post runs a story today about the eighth woman to step forward to having had an affair with Tiger Woods; this latest, a porn star. The story goes on to state that Woods is considering an appearance to confess at the altar of that cultural high priestess Oprah, where he will bare his soul to that semi-divine paragon of all that is "nice", correct, and proper, to he shall receive from her, through the sacred aura of the stage lights and television camera lens and amongst the sobbing gallery of her supplicants, absolution and penance for this "transgressions". After all, as some commentators have said in the wake of this sordid matter, what he has done "is no worse" than what perhaps 50% of the American public are themselves guilty of the same. Among the comments that quickly followed the posting of this story on the NP website was this delightful offering: "Is Oprah his next stop?" LOL, I guess that would make her #9. I apprecia

Communion ban for politicians with vote pro-abortion

Argument for denying politician communion for voting contrary to Catholic fundamental values and teaching by Rev. James Molgano. Brilliant... Concise... and I believe, universally applicable. Thank you Fr. Molgano!   The argument is categorically fallacious and hence a non sequitur. The particular conclusion of this inductive argument is derived from false premises. To say, then, that the Catholic Church has “withheld” its basic connection to worship God from anyone is grossly erroneous. First, basic tenets of worship are not purely subjective, but are inextricably connected with “spirit and truth” (John 4: 24-25; Catechism of the Catholic Church, 1179). Then, and only then, can true worship be offered unto the father in a “full, active and participating” manner. Second, to say that a politician or anyone who espouses the Christian faith can at the same time support, protect, defend or advance the cause of a man/woman’s “right” to abort human life is always intrinsically e

"Holy Post" Blog column

Theo Caldwell: What would Saint Nicholas do? Posted: December 05, 2009, 10:10 PM by Ron Nurwisah Christianity , christmas Beginning on his Feast Day of Dec. 6 and continuing through the Christmas season, folks are put in mind of St. Nicholas, who comes in guises ranging from a red-suited elf to a retail pitchman. In reality, Nicholas was a fourth century Bishop of Myra, born in what is now southern Turkey, who personified the divine nature of generosity. As the patron saint of, among others, archers, bakers, bankers, mariners, merchants and pawnbrokers, he has myriad responsibilities, to be certain. But of course, Nicholas is best known as the Patron Saint of Children. At first, this may appear an impossibly eclectic group of things for one saint to represent. In particular, the idea that the same figure can