30 August, 2010

Offbeat Photo: Nuns host gnarly surfing contest in NJ « CatholicVoteAction.org

Sr. James Dolores (73 yrs) shows her form!



You go Girl!!

Offbeat Photo: Nuns host gnarly surfing contest in NJ « CatholicVoteAction.org

Freedom Through Truth: Why Parents Drink

An 'oldie' but a 'goodie'!!

Freedom Through Truth: Why Parents Drink

Holy War Over Ground Zero | First Things

Holy War Over Ground Zero | First Things

Questions before the upcoming Papal Visit to Great Britain

John Paul II
Benedict XVI
With Britain on the horizon, is the Vatican’s communications office up to the challenge?


Sadly, the probability that the answer to this question is 'No'. The Holy Father is an intellectual and holy man; a wise choice of the Holy Spirit. Alas, he does not the possess charismatic presence of his predecessor. Come the end of his Pontificate, it is unlikely that  the crowds will shout out "Magnus" as happened at the Funeral Mass of John Paul the Great. Learned Vatican watchers bemoan the chaotic and seemingly 'reactive' posture of this pontificate when it comes to presenting a hermeneutical key that defines the message of the Holy See. Where John Paul fashioned and planned his messages with JoaquĆ­n Navarro-Valls and others so as offer the clarity of fundamental principles as they apply in different cultures.


Politics teaches: you can either 'define' yourself, or allow others define you. Through missteps and poorly crafted messages, the team around B16 has let the opponents of the Church define him. Where John Paul's charisma and coherent message was able to breakthrough into the public consciousness, seizing the opportunities of foreign visits to proclaim his message, B16's lack in these same areas has been insufficient to accomplish the same feat. Admittedly B16 suffers in the comparison, not because of any religious or moral failing - he is universally accepted by the majority of Catholics as being as holy and orthodox as J.P. II,  - but because of his failure to surround himself with advisers who understand how to 'market' his message.


This has resulted in B16 being portrayed as probably complicit in the tsunami of sex abuse scandals that have swept across the planet over the past 30 years. Documents such as 'Crimine Sollicitationis'  and the 2002 letter of the Holy Office reserving such cases to the Holy See have been deliberately misinterpreted in the media by litigation lawyers as a 'command' to cover-up of these crimes. This is patently false. The document deals only with one aspect of these abuses (when the sacrament of reconciliation is involved and ergo the seal of confession must be protected so as not to identify the victims) and did not include a prohibition or admonition to keep these offenses from the civil authorities. Instead of making this fact clear from the start, the Vatican dithered, delayed and failed to present a cogent response until it was too late. The die had again been cast in a negative light with the current pontificate trapped within its grasp.


This is but one example of a series of misadventures which have served to squeeze the breath out of B16's pontificate.


As the Papal Visit to Great Britain draws near to the land of Fleet Street, there is little reason to hope (and thus a significant reason for Catholics to pray) that this journey will improve the media image of this Pontiff.  His message will have an uphill task in making itself heard above the din of the tabloids hyping the antics of Dawkins and Hitchens.  The BBC will also air a mock 'trial' of the Pope during the visit, encouraging viewers to call in with their verdict - facilitating an orchestrated campaign to vote B16 'off the island', further distracting for his message and adding fuel to the fire of those attempting to burn this pontificate to the ground.

Is Pope Benedict's media team up to the challenge? | Media | The Guardian

Will Muslims win the coming battle for the West!

Mecca
Demographics alone points out that there is a coming confrontation between Muslims and the West. With birthrates throughout the western world having fallen below replacement levels while Muslims continuing for at least the first generation of their arrival as immigrants into western countries. This demographic reality has created a great deal of disquiet among Christians and the 'chattering classes'. 

IMHO, Christians should have confidence in the forces of western secularism rather than fear the 'Islamification' of culture, as seems to be the opinion of a significant percentage of frightened western citizens. Consider that as recently as the 1960's, Christian values and religious standards were enshrined as the dominant societal consensus. In one generation, these same preeminent values have been wiped from the public square. Though seemingly blind to the horrendous consequences wrought upon children and women's interests by the sexual revolution, secularists have at least proven their capacity to win the hearts of heretofore believers.

It has happened to Christians... it will happen to the Muslims who come here too. The Koran and Imans will never be able to match the creativity and effectiveness of Madison Avenue in the contest for the hearts and minds of future citizens. The exemplary  practice levels of various immigrants of all communions drops like a stone with each year they spend in Canada.

It is an intriguing amalgam of secularists and some Christians who have been fueling the hysteria. One camp believes that its own institutions and creeds will not succeed in a contest for the affections of theists, who are in league with those who object to any public expression of religious values and beliefs. We see public personalities and politicians such as Glen Beck and Sarah Palin trying to ride in the wake of this bizarrely paired set of bed-fellows into positions of influence and power south of the border. Following the footsteps of Karl Rove, they have enlisted tens of thousands of evangelical Christians to organize their neighborhoods and disseminate their positions to as many as possible. This was a winning strategy of George W. Bush and Christians should remember that their values were given little more than lip service in his administrations.

Unfortunately, the principle of freedom of religion and religious expression is now being put at risk by this Christian dalliance with the Conservative Right-wing of the Republican Party. If believers of any conviction allow the creation of a right for the state to discriminate against one religion as opposed to another (Islam is a religion insofar as Sharia law is a faith based system of laws, and with over a billion adherents, it is irrelevant if one believes its tenets or not - they merit the rights and obligations as a religion), then it can just as easily be wielded as a weapon to restrict the rights and actions of Christians in the future.

This is not a precedent that believers of all creeds must not allow to happen. These alarmists are claiming little more than the 'sky is falling' as they churn up the citizenry with their predictions of the 'Muslim menace'.
 

Put your confidence in the rule of law and western culture. They are far more powerful than alarmists are giving them credit for. Human rights, Hollywood and Haight-Ashbury combined are a force to be reckoned with for any religion. Christians should not think that Islamists will succeed where Christians have failed.

Fr. Tim

26 August, 2010

Charles Lewis: A chance to rethink embroyonic stem cell research | Holy Post | National Post

Charles Lewis: A chance to rethink embroyonic stem cell research | Holy Post | National Post

Why I won't publish anonymous letters on my blog

Yesterday, a letter was published on a website (Sylvia's Site) that was received anonymously, claiming to come from priests of my diocese writing under the pseudonym of 'Pembroke Priests for Justice, Truth and Integrity'. I have been asked on that site whether or not I would publish the letter here on my blog.


The answer is an emphatic NO!!!


The reason that I won't publish it is BECAUSE it is anonymously offered. Anyone who follows my blog here or elsewhere on the net should know that I always use my real name (not some made up 'handle') when I express an opinion. I do this because IMHO, if I am not willing to attach my name to an opinion, then I should have no reason to expect that anyone would give it more than just a passing glance. If someone is not willing to stand behind what they write, be they allegations or plaudits, then there is really no reason to give it much attention.


I am always mindful of John Gabriel's 'Dickwad Theory of the Internet' whenever I face a decision as to whether something anonymous should be included in these pages:


One Person + Anonymity + Audience = One 'Dickwad'


If these priests (if in fact it does come from priests of the Diocese) want to express an opinion about how these sad affairs have been handled by our Bishops past or present, let them put their name behind their words. To do otherwise will only serve to deepen the sense of doom and mistrust that already exists between brother priests; priests who have been battered and shocked by previous revelations in these abuse cases in our own backyard. The end result will be the transforming of a relationship of fraternal trust between brother priests into a cesspool of distrust and suspicion.


So, NO, I will not be publishing any letter that I receive that does not come with the name of the author attached.  Want to anonymously make a comment? Go ahead... that's why I moderate comments... to weed out the loons. But offering a remark in response to a column without revealing one's identity is far different that launching a broadside attack without standing behind what is written with your name.


I appreciate the difficulty this brings... I have felt the sting on episcopal disapproval myself on occasion for things that I have written here. But at least the Bishop involved knows that it was me who wrote it. I'm quite willing to accept the consequences of my words. The author(s) of this anonymous letters are not. This is not an insignificant difference.


Priests should do better. One horror (predator priests) does not justify another (anonymous allegations). We priests should be held to a higher standard and be willing to accept the consequences of our acts and words. No matter what our opinion on these tragic affairs are, we all deserve better.


Fr. Tim Moyle
Mattawa, Ontario

25 August, 2010

Antimatter detector to catch last shuttle to space - The Globe and Mail

Antimatter detector to catch last shuttle to space - The Globe and Mail

THIS WOMAN IS BRILLIANT!!! Every 'Mom' MUST take the time to watch this short compendium of a 'Mother's Vocabulary'

The 'Mommy Rhapsody'

In a spirit of equality, and having witnessed the never-ending quality of a Mother's work during my friends recent visit with me at my cottage, I offer this inspirational video in tribute to Mothers everywhere. 'Dads' may 'rock', but 'Moms' are cool.


(H/T Michael Brandon for the suggestion and the video)


Enjoy!


Event: John Paul the Great Legacy Project « CatholicVoteAction.org

Event: John Paul the Great Legacy Project « CatholicVoteAction.org

Taking the Summer Series: The Commissioning and Dismissal to bring Christ to the World.

 

As summer draws to a close, it's appropriate to come to the end of my summer meditation project on the Mass. I've accompanied this prayer time with a reading of a social gospel classic text by Walter Rauchenbauch: Christianity and the Social Crisis of the 21st Century. This book, published in 1907(!) is amazing preessencent for what has transpired in the past number of years. Writing in the first decade of the 20th century he spoke of the need to re-engage the prophetic voice of the Church to remind society of the existence of truth as understood by Christians. He predicted that the voice of faith would be challenged both externally and weakened internally resulting in a privatization of faith, driving it from the public square. This Baptist convert from Lutheranism prefigured the arguments of a latter convert from the Church of Luther, Richard John Neuhaus. Catholics (and Christians of all denominations,) need to heed these voices. I pray that this short inspirational video might help to convey our mutual obligation to bring Christ out of the Churches and into our daily lives, for it is for this reason (and not simply for our own personal salvation) that we have been fed by Christ himself in the sharing of his word and Body in the celebration of the Eucharist.


I hope you've enjoyed this short series as much as I have in preparing it! Now, onto the start of the new school year... and beyond.

When the Tribunal of the World Condemns the Church for Heresy

Archbishop Charles Chaput (Denver)
IF the day should ever come that I would leave my beloved Ottawa Valley Diocese of Pembroke, and were to leave the country, the Dioceses headed by the Archbishops mentioned in this story would be my destination. These men are orienting their diocese in the right direction, choosing to engage the argument in defense of faith in the Public Square. It would be an honor to harness myself to the team that is being guided with such wisdom. In Canada men like Archbishops Collins (Toronto) and Smith (Edmonton) and Bishop Henry (Calgary) are also working towards the same goal. They too are a blessing for the Church in North America.

With the elevation of Cardinal Ouellet to the Congregation of Bishops in Rome, and with the imminent replacement of over 50% of the Bishops in Quebec over the next five years (as they reach 75 years of age), the chances for other like minded Bishops throughout the province are future is pregnant with hope for better times in both French and English Canada.

This article by Sandro Magister in which he comments primarily on Archbishop Charles Chaput (Denver) profiles one such Bishop who embodies the best of this pastoral approach. It is well worth the time to read!

Fr. Tim 

When the Tribunal of the World Condemns the Church for Heresy

24 August, 2010

I FINALLY understand what my Dad was trying to tell me!

 

Friends of mine have just left my cottage after an eight day visit.... Dad, Mom, Hannah (5) , Jocelyn (3) and Olivia (1), together with Zack (Jack Russell Terrier) and Tawney (major league Mutt!) have just pulled out of the driveway on their way home. In their honor (and in eternal thanksgiving for the peace and quiet that has finally returned to my life), I post this video from YouTube entitled "The Dad Life".


Parenthood is most certainly a vocation... because if it wasn't for God's grace... I don't kids would not live to see their 6th birthday!!! 

I finally understand my father who used to call me whenever he came to the end of a visit with the grandkids at his house to tell me that I should be on my knees thanking God everyday for being a celibate!! "I like to see them come" he would say, "but I love to see them go!" Dad... for the first time in my life, I truly understand what you were telling me. You were a wise man!


So, enjoy the video... as I go and fall down on my knees in humble supplication and prayer as I watch the tail lights of their mini-van disappear over the bridge. 

Then... all that's left to do is find all those hiding places where the kids have hidden my books, dishes, DVD's, CD's, TV remote..... (sigh)

21 August, 2010

Taking the Summer Series - The Lords Prayer in Aramaic

My thanks to Fr. Paul Conway (Elliot Lake, Ontario) for pointing out this magnificent presentation of the Lord's Prayer which follows after the Eucharistic Prayer.

Taking the Summer to Reflect Upon the Mass: The Consecration

Brothers at arms: Peter Hitchens talks about his faith and his atheist sibling Christopher | Holy Post | National Post

Brothers at arms: Peter Hitchens talks about his faith and his atheist sibling Christopher | Holy Post | National Post

A Youtube Treasure from my youth!! Johnny Cash sings "Ringing the Bells for Jim"

I happened upon this song by Johnny Cash. It was one of my favorites when I was a kid. I guess it plays to my Irish sentimentality, but you might appreciate it as well... Irish or not!

Brampton Civic hospital imposes euthanasia by dehydration through pressure tactics

Brampton Civic hospital imposes euthanasia by dehydration through pressure tactics

Some people just have no fashion sense!

Here is a shot that was posted on the CNN website of a gentleman waiting to board a flight. I can't decide if he was a victim of a wicked security check or is simply in (DESPERATE) need of a wardrobe makeover. Either way, I doubt you would see him walking down a Canadian street in winter with this get-up! 


I wonder though... where does he keep his passport?

Three Sayings on Marriage | Archdiocese of Washington

Three Sayings on Marriage | Archdiocese of Washington

19 August, 2010

My Little Piece of Heaven!!

Stephen Weigel, son of George & Joan Weigel, was kind enough to take some pictures while taking a tour on the Ottawa River, including this shot of my cottage. Stephen is a professional photographer who is well on his way of eclipsing his father's fame (George is a noted author, biographer of Pope John Paul II and NBC religion commentator) with his spectacular shots.


Next year, Stephen will be producing a multi-media project of Churches and Chapels in Rome. It will include two versions of a book and a DVD. His Facebook page (Stephen Weigel Photography) offers a few albums of his recent work in Canada and the USA.


Thank you Stephen for this gift. It helps to make clear why I so deeply appreciate my little piece of 'heaven on earth' as this photo captures the essence of the peace, quiet and isolation that my humble little cottage offers me.

16 August, 2010

Prop 8 Ruling Could Criminalize Christianity, Leaders Warn - U.s. - Catholic Online

Prop 8 Ruling Could Criminalize Christianity, Leaders Warn - U.s. - Catholic Online

Taliban stone couple for adultery in Afghanistan - CTV News

Religion can be a great force for good. This story (sadly) proves that it can also be a force of ill.

Taliban stone couple for adultery in Afghanistan - CTV News

David Frum: What went wrong in the Islamic world? | Full Comment | National Post

David Frum: What went wrong in the Islamic world? | Full Comment | National Post

Rex Murphy: Testing America’s tolerance | Full Comment | National Post

Rex Murphy: Testing America’s tolerance | Full Comment | National Post

Gay Marriage... from a different perspective!!

Thanks Lady Janus!!!
This was too good not to post. (I stole it off of Lady Janus' Facebook page) It might not fit with Catholic theology, but it does provide a different perspective on the topic.

14 August, 2010

Why a high flying communist could not see clearly | Holy Post | National Post

Why a high flying communist could not see clearly | Holy Post | National Post

Obama endorses building a mosque near Ground Zero - The Globe and Mail

Obama bases his position on the principle of religious freedom. Good move!

Obama endorses building a mosque near Ground Zero - The Globe and Mail

The Oprahfication of Religion | Register Exclusives | NCRegister.com

Easy to do.... if you're as rich as Oprah!!

The Oprahfication of Religion | Register Exclusives | NCRegister.com

Taking the Summer to Reflect Upon the Mass: The Homily

The homily follows the liturgy of the Word. It is the part of the Mass where the priest is to 'break open' the word that has been proclaimed so that all participants might be able to digest the lessons of God. Just as the priest is to break the eucharistic bread so that it can be taken by individuals, so too the preacher is to take apart the scriptures so that people will be able to understand them and by nourished by the Word of God.

Here is a meditation video on the significance of the Eucharist.

Enjoy! (I did!!)

13 August, 2010

One teenager's eye-opening trip to a Christian youth conference - The Daily Observer - Ontario, CA

Good things are happening in my own little diocese of Pembroke! Here is a letter to the editor of the local daily from a Grade 12 student who has found peace and strength in her faith. She is not alone. This is a trend that has been engendered in our Diocese through programs such as 'Lifeteen'. These young men and women are to be commended for taking up the wonderful challenge of Catholic orthodoxy. 


Well done!!! Keep up the great work for Christ!

One teenager's eye-opening trip to a Christian youth conference - The Daily Observer - Ontario, CA

Opinion: Trajectory of the Culture of Death - Compulsory Euthanasia? - Politics & Policy - Catholic Online

Opinion: Trajectory of the Culture of Death - Compulsory Euthanasia? - Politics & Policy - Catholic Online

Catholic Apostolate Creates Powerful Ads to invite Catholics to come back to the Church

Catholic Online Activism, in 10 Easy Steps « CatholicVoteAction.org

Catholic Online Activism, in 10 Easy Steps « CatholicVoteAction.org

Why Apple is Catholic and PCs are Protestant – Telegraph Blogs

Given that all of my personal electronics are from Apple (imac, iphone, ipod), I can only agree with the authors contention!!


Fr. Tim

Why Apple is Catholic and PCs are Protestant – Telegraph Blogs

12 August, 2010

Madonna House reveals simplicity of Catholic faith | Holy Post | National Post

Here is an article that I wrote for the National Post's religion blog, the "Holy Post". The friends I mentioned were George & Joan Weigel (and their son, Stephen) as well as Fr. Andrew Fournall, a Polish Dominican who serves on the campus of Columbia University in NYC and is pastor of Our Lady of Lourdes Parish in Manhattan. Aside from visiting Madonna House, we also spent part of the day exploring Wilno, a hamlet set high upon the hills that frame the Ottawa Valley. It was of particular interest to Fr. Andrew as Wilno is also the first Polish settlement in Canada, with Polish continuing to be spoken by many of the elder residents of the area. Stephen, an up and coming professional photographer. His first project will be published next year (book/DVD), a collaborative effort with his father and others highlighting the churches and chapels of Rome. This will be a 'must have' book for anyone interested in the history and beauty of this treasure trove of churches.


Please feel free to join in the comment threads that accompany this Holy Post article! Intelligent voices are always welcome there, irrespective of their communion, faith or belief.

Madonna House reveals simplicity of Catholic faith | Holy Post | National Post

09 August, 2010

In Search of the Multiverse | Blogs | NCRegister.com

In Search of the Multiverse | Blogs | NCRegister.com

Taking the summer to reflect upon the beauty of the Mass: The Liturgy of the Word

Another tidbit taken from today's National Post religion blog "The Holy Post"

Taking the summer to reflect upon the beauty of the Mass: The Liturgy of the Word

The Liturgy of the Word is the public telling of the sacred stories of our faith. As a people of Abrahamic faith, we are a people of the written word complied together in the Old and New Testaments.


One of the most beautiful ways to take in the scriptures is to participate in singing them using Gregorian chant. Much of sacred writing is in fact musical lyric and mnemonic rhythms, forms that allowed for easy memorization by populations who for the greater part, were illiterate.


For the next few days, I will post video's which offers different angles on this subject so as to help in reflecting upon how the chanting of scripture can augment our understanding of how God's spirit moves through the telling of His encounters with humanity.

05 August, 2010

Editorial - Marriage Is a Constitutional Right - NYTimes.com

An interesting and cogent defense of the rights of individuals to 'marriage'... whatever that word means. I am still troubled by one element of this interpretation by the US Federal Court: what does 'marriage' now mean? If it is simply a registration of a legal domestic relationship - something that every citizen possesses according to this ruling, does the state still possess the capacity to determine what a 'marriage' is? Is it necessarily limited to a relationship between two individuals, or can other configurations be accepted? Will there need to be a separate set of laws that will govern sexual relationships within 'marriage' to ensure the genetic health of any progeny that would spring from the marital act? Would this not be a gross intrusion of the state into the 'bedrooms of the nation', unraveling legal definitions that we have benefited from since the 1960's?

Fr. Tim



Editorial - Marriage Is a Constitutional Right - NYTimes.com

02 August, 2010

We may exist inside a black hole, scientist says | Posted | National Post

WOW!!!

We may exist inside a black hole, scientist says | Posted | National Post

Philosophy and Faith - Opinionator Blog - NYTimes.com

Philosophy and Faith - Opinionator Blog - NYTimes.com

Taking the summer to reflect upon the beauty of the Mass: Moving from Penance to Praise!

Continuing with my summer reflections on the parts of the mass, I offer this. As we began our Eucharist by acknowledging our sinfulness and total dependency upon the merits of the cross, the faithful are then called to move both interior-ally and externally to the expression of joy and praise in appreciation of God's mercy and love embodied in the Gloria. 


May this holiday Monday be a time when joy and praise fills your heart and life as well as for all whom you love and hold dear.


Fr. Tim

Freedom Through Truth: When Faced With the Truth Many Hide From It. Why?

"Daniel Patrick Moynihan, a former US politican and sociologist, was quoted as saying: "You are entitled to your opinion. But you are not entitled to your own facts." That said, and that being true, why are there so many differing opinions about things in our world?


In a recent article for her blog, writer Sheila Liaugminas, a very thoughful and reasoned writer pulled together some research and thinking that gave me pause.


She commenced her piece as follows: "Opinions are individual and subjective. But facts are facts. Trouble is, they’re usually communicated or interpreted by someone. That’s where opinion comes back in…."



Click on the link below to read the rest of this concise and insightful offering.
Freedom Through Truth: When Faced With the Truth Many Hide From It. Why?

Catholic Culture : Latest Headlines : 2nd volume of Pope's book on Jesus due in early 2011

Catholic Culture : Latest Headlines : 2nd volume of Pope's book on Jesus due in early 2011

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