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Showing posts from February, 2010

What have the Olympics revealed about God & Country!

      The goosebumps have hardly left my arms as I write this post in the wake of the triumph of our hockey team over Team USA; the athletic finale to the Vancouver Olympics, which have been the single greatest standard of excellence in setting an all time Winter Olympic high for gold medals won by a single country! My sense of patriotism and pride in the Canadian accomplishments these past 17 days, has brought me to my feet several times in singing our national anthem. For the "first time ever won on our home soil" gold of Alexandre Biladeau, to the final gold of the hockey victory I suspect that there have been few equals in the outpouring of national pride  now being demonstrated up in these hours! Believe me, I give thanks and praise to God for these victories!! Yet, I can predict there are in both the theist and atheist camps, those who would object to my confidence in saying that God is responsible for this explosion of patriotic fever, which grips all Canadian cit


The puck will be dropped in a few minutes for the gold medal match in the Olympic hockey tournament... Canada vs USA. Win or lose, this has been the most successful Olympics ever for Canada. We have surpassed our total of gold medals in any winter Olympics. In fact if we win this gold medal match, we will stand alone as the country which won more gold medals than any other country in Olympic history (a record we now share with Russia). Go Canada Go!!! Prediction: Canada 4 USA 2

An abrieviated version of an old chestnut

The Perfect Priest The results of a computerized survey indicate the perfect priest preaches exactly fifteen minutes. He condemns sins but never upsets anyone. He works from 8:00 AM until midnight and is also a janitor. He makes $50 a week, wears good clothes, buys good books, drives a good car, and gives about $50 weekly to the poor. He is 28 years old and has preached 30 years. He has a burning desire to work with teenagers and spends all of his time with senior citizens. The perfect priest smiles all the time with a straight face because he has a sense of humor that keeps him seriously dedicated to his work. He makes 15 calls daily on parish families, shut-ins and the hospitalized, and is always in his office when needed. If your priest does not measure up, simply send this letter to six other churches that are tired of their priest, too. Then bundle up your priest and send him to the church on the top of the list. In one week, you will receive 1,643 priests and one of them wi

Why should the state pay for an elective medical procedure such as an abortion?

The issue of abortion has spawned a few comments in a previous post on state-funded medicare such as we have in Canada. Some have used the phrase "universal health care" as meaning that every service should be paid for, while I have taken a different position. The advocates of abortion always say that it is a safe procedure and not a threat to the health of the mother. Common sense also sells us that pregnancy is not a life-threatening condition (with  extraordinarily few exceptions). Why should state funded health care be used to pay for an elective procedure? We do not pay for elective cosmetic surgery... we do not pay for chiropractic services... we do not pay for psychological services (just to name a few). Some of these services may  be needed to save someones life or health (especially for people who suffer from depression or chronic pain conditions). If it is just for the state not to fund these services, why should abortion necessarily be included among the proced

Archaeological dig uncovers support for biblical account of Solomon's 1st temple

Archaeologists have unearthed a series of structures in Old Jerusalem which seems to validate the biblical account of the first temple, built in the 10th century BCE by King Solomon. Once again we seem to be presented with the reality that although the Bible is not a history book, it is a book whose writings are rooted in the history of a people. This has particular resonance for me as I am currently reading N.T. Wright's history of the resurrection in which he continually argues the same point. It's always nice when these lessons of faith serve to be supported through secular academic research! Click on the title to this post to read the article yourself!

American Health Care Solution?

The American government has been brought to its knees by its inability to deal with how to provide health care coverage for its citizens. In place of the insane mismash of legislation that is the Obama Health Care Initiative, I wonder if the following would be another way of framing their argument such that it might be acceptable to both camps involved in the current legislative paralysis. Why NOT pay for your health care through the tax system. It could be formulated, implemented and effective within one current legislation if it can provide universal coverage as attached to universal suffrage. PART 1.  Caring for the "widows and the orphans" 1. Provide all health care for those under the voting age, and those after a certain age so as to ensure coverage for the vulnerable in American society. 2. Determine the average annual cost of health care for these citizens. 3. Divide it by the number of tax payers. 4. Each tax payer contributes their share to this cost thr

Cristina joins the conversation (what can we discuss?) from a position of faith

Cristian Alarcon, a remarkable person of faith and intellect, offers the following as her contribution to the ongoing debate about the appropriateness of what we discuss, as well as modeling how we can do so in charity and truth. I offer my response below her text. Thanks Cristina!!! Fr. Tim ------------------------------------------------------------------- Interesting thread! If you don’t mind, I would like to gently point out something to those who have been critical of your choice of posts on this blog. I am referring here to your concluding words after posting “Church Teaching on Homosexuality: Wisdom or Bigotry?” Here are your own words: “These conclusions are hardly considered "correct" or proper in today's marriage debates. Is it possible that "common knowledge" on this question, just like the public consensus regarding of the safety of children with priests, has turned against the proponents of the gay rights movement?” The remarks above

Some perspective for those who are concerned with first impressions in these discussions

A WOMAN was flying from  Melbourne to Brisbane.  Unexpectedly, the plane was diverted to Sydney.  Along the way  the flight attendant explained that  there would be a delay, and if the passengers wanted  to get off the aircraft, the plane would re-board in 50 minutes. Everybody got off the plane except one lady who was blind. The man had noticed her as he walked by and could tell the lady was blind because her guide dog lay quietly underneath the seats in front of her throughout the entire flight. He could also tell she had flown this very flight before because the pilot approached her, and calling her by name, said, 'Kathy, we are in  Sydney for almost an hour. Would you like to get off and stretch your legs?'   The blind lady replied, 'No thanks, but maybe Buddy would like to stretch his legs.' Picture this: All the people in the gate area came to a complete standstill when they looked up and saw the pilot walk off the plane with a Guide dog! The pilot was eve

Freyr helps open an investigation of that place within us where the negotiation between acceptance/approval, orthodoxy and compassion

Freyr, a regular in the comments of this blog, offers an insightful posting that was inspired by the discussion re: the appropriateness of posting controversial material such as the Reker Study report from Catholic Online. Your thoughts would be appreciated, for I believe that he shines a light on an essential process; essential that is if one holds to the positions of Catholic Christian orthodoxy in these post modern times - especially in its moral teachings. He gives us a language that we can use to discuss how we must negotiate societal norms in that place where beliefs are tested by the pastoral/personal reality and belief of others. Thanks to Freyr for this thoughtful contribution. Fr. Tim --------------------- Freyr said... "They must be accepted with respect, compassion and sensitivity. Every sign of unjust discrimination in their regard should be avoided." Sec 2358, Catechism There is a fallacy present in our culture that says acceptance must in

Ordinary Hero's - excellent reflection on grace in everyday people

Michael Brandon, host of Freedom through Truth blog, posts an excellent article on encountering Christ in the ordinary "hero's" we meet in life. It reminded me of the homily that was preached at my mother's funeral when the preacher spoke of our obligation to be "everyday saints". It's well worth the read if you want to be inspired in finding such earthly vessels of grace among the people of your daily life.

Canadian strikes REAL GOLD!!

Our country is wrapped up in Olympic fever these days as we celebrate each triumph and victory of our athletes. Yet today I celebrate another Canadian today, whose victory is not found on the slopes of Vancouver, but is marked by the cures and souls won for God by Brother Andre Bessette who will be formally declared a saint in October of this year. Eternal life with God... that's a prize worth attaining, no matter whether we are Olympians

Lent is a BUSY time for priests!

G'day all, I am sorry that I have not kept up with as many daily blog postings as usual but Lent is a VERY busy time for one priest in a parish this size. I'll dedicate Sunday evening and Monday to writing out a number of posts on a variety of issues and post them throughout the coming week. I trust (PLEASE GOD!!) that things will calm down to something a little closer to normal in the next few days once we are truly launched into this penitential season. Until then, I'll take whatever free time that comes my way and post as I can. Thanks for your understanding! Fr. Tim Moyle St. Anne's Parish, Mattawa, Ontario

Why I maintain this blog: A reflection and some thoughts. Feel free to make suggestions if you think I can better accomplish what I am trying to achieve - generating a conversation

Martin & Reddog:  Thank you for your posts in this thread. I had never heard of Dr. Reker before I read the news story about his study (I think I provided a link as well as publishing the summary). You each raise a central point of this blog that I would like to address, namely what articles I publish on the blog. I will copy this same text (although maybe with a bit of editing to clean up the grammar) into a posting in its own right. Yours are not the only criticism that I get about the variety of topics that I post on the blog. In fact I catch more flack from fellow Christians who object to the fact that I post comments such as your which argue the opposite to Dr. Reker's study (they often think that I am harming the Christian position by exposing readers to anti-life or other positions contrary to traditional Christian stands on moral issues). I also freely admit that some of what I post is politically incorrect - at least as that term has come to be understood as sayi

The question of ANH (Artificial Nutrition and Hydration

Here is the position of the Catholic Church on when it is acceptable to remove extraordinary means of care for people in a permanently vegetative state, at least as it applies to nutrition and hydration: The church’s view is that giving food and water to a person through a feeding tube is not a medical intervention but basic care . This is always a difficult area in which to balance the moral, religious, pastoral and practical issues of someone that we love in life. I pray that this clear guideline might make the decision easier for families to make in difficult times. Click here if you want to read the original documen t

A father-in-law's heartfelt tribute upon the death of his son-in-law: George Weigel on Dr. Rob Susil, NM, PhD, (RIP)

Robert Charles Susil, 1974-2010 By George Weigel Four days after my son-in-law, Rob Susil, re-entered Johns Hopkins Hospital, where he would die of an aggressive sarcoma on Feb. 5, the Church marked the Feast of the Presentation of the Lord and read the Gospel of Simeon’s prophecy to Mary—that a “sword will pierce through your own soul” (Lk 2:35). That image of a sword, often described as a sword of sorrow, is the first of the traditional “seven dolors” of Our Lady of Sorrows, commemorated throughout the Church on Sept. 15, the day after the Feast of the Triumph of the Cross. Yet if Our Lady is the first of disciples and the model of Christian discipleship, then the sword of sorrow must pass through each disciple’s life, too, configuring us more closely to the Son from whose pierced side flowed blood, water and the Church. All of us who loved and esteemed Rob Susil have been pierced by that sword in recent weeks. He and my daughter, Gwyneth, had fought gallantly against his sarco

With Thanks to "Vic & Carol" who passed this along to me. It could be enlightening to challenge the various syllogisms that construct the argument as a whole!

With H/T to my friends, Carol & Vic J from Mattawa! You should listen someday to their story, if I could convince them to launch their own blog. Being people of such very good heart and character, any thoughts they would share on the subject of their choosing, would be of benefit of others. This  is one of the best explanations of why God allows pain and  suffering that I have  seen...   A  man went to a barbershop to have his hair cut and his beard trimmed. As the barber began to work, they began  to have a good conversation. They talked about so many  things and various subjects.  When they eventually  touched on the subject of God, the barber said: 'I don't  believe that God  exists.'    'Why do you say that?' asked the customer. 'Well, you just have  to go out in the street to realize that God doesn't exist.  Tell me, if God exists, would there be so many sick  people?  Would there be abandoned  children? If  God existed, there would be neit

Church Teaching on homosexuality: Wisdom or Bigotry?

Sonya Corbitt posts on "Catholic Online" an article in which she argues for the position of the Catholic Church on the subject of the gay agenda (or gay advances if you wish). Drawing upon the findings of research, (developed using the tools of modern social science) she offers a persuasive argument that there is a statistically great risk to the psychological well being of children when raised in a male same-sex union. The argument that demands the elimination of "heterosexualism" from modern society is shown in a comprehensive study published by Dr. George A. Rekers, Ph.D., Professor of Neuropsychiatry & Behavioral Science, University of South Carolina School of Medicine, Columbia, South Carolina, to offer a "unique danger" to children raised within a gay male led family. "Rekers cites numerous national and international studies that revealed: • Households with a homosexually-behaving adult uniquely endanger children. • Households wi

Bringing a comment discussion to the floor for consideration by any and all

reddog said... The anti abortion movement, as it has developed over the last 40 years, in America, has lost. Nobody minds if abortion becomes less popular as an option in cases of unwanted pregnancy. Nobody mourns the decrease in the numbers of abortion clinics. If Planned Parenthood is hounded out of business because of a too stident and militant attitude about abortion, that's OK. Whether or not abortion is health care and should be subsidized by the government or healthcare insurance is a civil matter, unrelated to the legality of abortion. Currently, girls and women have the choice of whether or not to carry a pregnancy to term. Thay can raise the child as their own, it can be raised within the family by others, with participation by the mother or given up for adoption. These options have always been legal, never threatened and never will be. The goal of the hard core anti abortion movement is and always has been the recriminalization of abortion. Not on

How to act at a time of death

Brett & Kate McKay write an simple etiquette on how one responds to a death of a family member or friend. Death is always a part of our existence, and it is almost certain that we will experience the death of others before we face our own. As a priest I appreciate how difficult this time can be for mourners and their friends. Alas, I also have experienced more than a few inappropriate moments when people committed some major faux pas that has made the grief experience worse for the people intimately involved. Click here or on the title of this post to read it for yourself if you want to review how to act in such difficult times.


Bruce Tallman, Dr. Min. Spiritual Director "Helping people grow in faith and love since 1983" 519-433-0981 HOW COULD GOD ALLOW THE TRAGEDY IN HAITI? If we ask how God, who is supposedly all-knowing, all-powerful, and all-loving, could allow the disaster in Haiti, it leads us to a larger question: why does God not prevent all accidents, illness, famine, and war? Why does God allow suffering in general? Pat Robertson, an ultra-conservative televangelist from the United States, said that God was punishing Haiti for "making a pact with the devil." Some Haitian preachers are claiming the same thing on the streets of Port-Au-Prince, talking about Sodom and Gomorrah, the biblical Flood, and Judgment Day. A few years ago, some Christians maintained that, because New Orleans had a reputation for being "sin city," God sent hurricane Katrina to punish them. A few centuries ago, John Wesley stated his b

Happy St. Valentine's Day

by Ronald J. Rychlak Last year, my Constitutional Law class was discussing the so-called war on Christmas, part of the effort to remove all things religious (or at least all things Christian) from the public square. One of my students argued that holidays did not need to have a religious basis. As an example, she mentioned Valentine's Day. I asked her whether she had ever heard of the St. Valentine's Day massacre. Of course she had; everyone has. The St. Valentine's Day massacre took place in Chicago in 1929. It is believed that Al Capone's gang from the south side of town dressed like police officers and mowed down seven members of Bugs Moran's north-side gang. The carnage finally motivated Chicago officials to crackdown on the gangsters of that era. My point in mentioning it, of course, was that Valentine's Day was once known to virtually everyone as St. Valentine's Day. It's not clear when people dropped the "Saint," but it's cle

Sisters of Life in Toronto

During my visits to New York when I would visit my dear friend Fr. Richard Neuhaus (RIP), I had a few opportunities to meet members of the Sisters of Life Community. This order of religious, founded under the inspiration of Cardinal John O'Connor (RIP) has dedicated themselves to working and praying for the cause of life. (As as aside, I am pleased to also say that a very talented young woman from my current assignment here in Mattawa is approaching the day of her final vows with this community... may God be with you Sister!!) Click on the title of this post to read an article published in the National Post (Holy Post Blog) about the establishment of a convent of these sisters in Toronto where they work diligently to assist women so that they will make a pro-life decision and bring their unborn child to birth. Please remember to pray for communities such as the Sisters for Life in their ministry.

Chesterton quote (Freyr: Thanks for the correction)

I like Theodore Dalrymple Thanks to Mark Shea for this post. The text below is taken from the "Catholic & Enjoying It!" website. Click on the title of this post to view the original document. There was nothing left that could conquer Rome; but there was also nothing left that could improve it. It was the strongest thing that was growing weak. It was the best thing that was going to the bad. It is necessary to insist again and again that many civilisations had met in one civilisation of the Mediterranean sea; that it was already universal with a stale and sterile universality. The peoples had pooled their resources and still there was not enough. The empires had gone into partnership and they were still bankrupt. No philosopher who was really philosophical could think anything except that, in that central sea, the wave of the world had risen to its highest, seeming to touch the stars. But the wave was already stooping; for it was only the wave of the world. That myth

The Holy Post

At the risk of sending faithful readers and participants in my blog elsewhere, I want to offer a suggestion for an excellent place to participate in similar discussions as I host here - the religion blog of the National Post. If you've never visited there, check it out. Click here or on the title to this post to see for yourself. Just don't forget to share your wisdom here too!! Fr. Tim

Consistory on the way?

John Allen writes in the National Catholic Reporter that Rome is rife with rumours of an impending announcement of a Consistory (when Cardinals are installed). He reports that Canada may be among the countries about to have a new Cardinal named (Archbishop Tom Collins - Toronto). Having studied under +Collins when he taught at St.Peters Seminary in London, I can only say that there are very few men whom I have encountered in life who possess the intellect, gentleness and faith as he does. He would be a very worthy candidate to become a prince of the Church. He will do Canada proud!!

The good that the Church does

If you click on the title to this post, you will find yourself reading an article which points out that fully 25% of all the health care institutions in the world are owned and run by the Catholic Church. In these days when people are so likely to point out the sins and errors of the Church, it's good to be reminded of the good that it does as well.

Planned Parenthood's Polluted Progenitor - from the woman who (respectfully) puts the 'mad' in Madam!

If the Catholic Church is considered unworthy of participating in public discourse because of the suspect beliefs or values of the past, then perhaps Planned Parenthood's must withdraw from the public square as well given the racist values promoted by their foundress, Margaret Sanger. Watch this short video yourself and see what you think. Just don't forget to leave your thoughts behind in the comments threads! Thanks. Fr. Tim

As if this family has suffered enough.... more on Dr. Rob Susil, M.D., Ph.D

Friends: Before we lose power for the fourth time here in North Bethesda, I wanted to let you know that, with the airports closed over the next two days because of yet another impending snowstorm, the decision was made this morning to defer Rob's funeral Mass until next week.      Therefore... 1. Friends may call at the Mitchell-Wiedefeld Funeral Home, 6500 York Road, Baltimore, MD      21212, from 3-5 p.m. and from 7-9 p.m. on Monday, 15 February. 2. The Mass of Christian Burial will be celebrated at the Cathedral of Mary Our Queen (5300     North Charles Street, Baltimore, MD 21210) at 11 .m. on Tuesday, 16 February, with internment to     follow at New Cathedral Cemetery (4300 Old Frederick Road, Baltimore, MD 21229). Ignore any information in the newspapers to the contrary; I know at least one notice went into the Baltimore Sun before we decided to wait until next week.      Gwyneth asks that, in lieu of flowers, memorial donations be made to either The Sarcoma Fed

Dr. Robert Charles Susil, M.D., Ph.D ,, R.I.P.

Friends :       Robert Charles Susil, M.D., Ph.D ., died this evening at age 35. The bleeding in his lungs had become so intense this morning that there was nothing further that medicine could do. Gwyneth was with him when he died, as she has been with him in a most heroic way throughout this illness.       Thank you for your prayers for Rob, for Gwyneth, for their son, William, and for the Susil and Weigel families: John and Agnes Susil, Rob’s parents; his brother Chris and his sister Rebecca; Joan, Monica, and Stephen Weigel.   Your solidarity has been deeply appreciated.       Rob was an extraordinary young man – a man of character, intelligence, faith, professional commitment and skill, humor, and love. We commend his soul to God, in the confidence that the prayers of these past twenty-two months, and particularly those offered so intensely in the past week, have not been in vain, but have opened channels of grace and healing of which we cannot be aware.         Be

A "Silent Scream"

If you hold to the view that an abortion is not the killing of any innocent life, I invite you to watch this short movie that was produced by Dr. Bernard Nathanson. I warn you that it is an EXTREMELY graphic presentation of the abortion of an 11 week old pre-born child, viewed through ultrasound imagery. I do not know how anyone can view this film and hold that abortion is little more than a woman's right to make decisions for her own body. Take the challenge - watch the movie, and share your thoughts below. You can reach the movie site by clicking here or on the title of this post.

Dr. Rob Susil - prayers are now more desperately needed than ever!

Here is the latest update on the condition of Dr. Rob Susil. As you can see, his condition is approaching a point where major decisions will have to be made as to continuing his treatment or allowing the cancer to win. His wife Gwyneth has been posting on the blog he began when he first received a diagnosis of cancer; a task she has taken up on Rob's behalf during this latest phase of his battle. When in her latest post, she speaks of desiring at least to grant him enough time to allow their three year old son, William to be able to see Rob in a state that will not traumatize him, it is clear that the situation has indeed become desperate. I ask you please to offer your prayers of support in the comment threads of this post so that I can offer them to Rob and his family as a sign of hope in these dark hours. Thank you. Fr. Tim ----------------------- Hello to all - The last two days have been difficult, as Robert has not been able to move any closer to coming off the ve

Does Plato hold the wisdom to help Tiger Woods get his libedo under control?

Carson Holloway, an Associate Professor of Political Science at the University of Nebraska at Omaha has posted an article on the First Things blog pages. In it he uses the teachings of Plato on the human soul to explain the recently revealed misdeeds of Tiger Woods. I highly recommend it. It provides some profound insights from this combination of ancient wisdom and all to common human failing. You can read the article here.

Can a Christian vote for the Liberal Party of Canada? Go ahead... it will probably only cost you your soul!

The leader of the Canadian Liberal Party has strongly come out in favor of a woman's right to have a government funded abortion for no other reason than she would want to have one. In this article in the National Pos t, he claims that he does not want to see women die at the hands of back street abortionists (as if somehow pro-life advocates would want such a horrid fate for anyone!). Michael Ignatieff's challenge to the Conservative Party leader (Prime Minister Stephen Harper) to state clearly his support for unlimited abortion services is little more than a cynical ploy trying to paint the (nominally) pro-life Prime Minister as some sort of fundamentalist extremist. Leaving aside for one moment the flawed logic of Ignatieff's argument (dead women - bad; dead babies - good), clearly no one of any political persuasion is supporting unsafe medical procedures at the hands of unqualified professionals. To try to label the pro-life camp in such a light is an intellectually

Canadian Groundhogs KNOW winter! They've got the red Maple Leaf on their chest

Now, if only they can predict favorable weather and results at the Olympics this month for their fellow two legged Canuck's, we'll give them the most comfortable winter accommodations on the continent! Let the voice of groundhog and beaver ring out for our Canadian athletes in Vancouver... !!! GO CANADA GO!!! !!! GO CANADA GO!!! !!! GO CANADA GO!!!