31 August, 2011

Myth Buster: Constantine Founded the Catholic Church? I think not!

Emperor Constine
The Journey: Almost Not Catholic: Myth Buster: Constantine Founded the Catholic Church

Abuse victim ‘hurt’ by confession stance

Has anyone out there ever been in a 'confessional box' where a priest could fondle a child as is alleged by this woman? Confessionals have a solid wall with a screen window through which the priest and penitent converse! It reminds me of an expression my Grandmother used to say when we used to bring our girl friends to our family cottage: "The best form of birth control between a man and woman is a solid wall between them." If my brothers and I were unable to touch our girl friends through a bedroom wall, how can a priest physically molest a penitent if they are separated by a wall? Remember, the 'confessional box' was designed specifically to provide a barrier to prevent just offenses!!

UTV News - Abuse victim ‘hurt’ by confession stance

Catholic League on ban against clergy during NYC 9/11 ceremony | Fr. Z's Blog – What Does The Prayer Really Say?

Catholic League on ban against clergy during NYC 9/11 ceremony | Fr. Z's Blog – What Does The Prayer Really Say?

30 August, 2011

5 Things You Need to Know About The Catholic Church

Aggie Catholics: 5 Things You Need to Know About The Catholic Church

In Defense of Sirico, Weigel, and Novak | Regnum Novum

In Defense of Sirico, Weigel, and Novak | Regnum Novum

Young Guns | VirtuousPla.net

Here is an interesting article focusing upon the emergence of new Catholic 'apologists' who have taken to the new media to promote, proclaim and defend the teachings of the Church. I particularly appreciate the qualities that these new bloggers are bringing forth: courtesy, charity and a facility at using social media to achieve their ends.


They give me hope for the future of the faith!

Young Guns | VirtuousPla.net

Quebec doctor probes possible autism, in-vitro fertilization link

Back in my seminary days, our moral theology professor always repeated one single phrase that explained why it is that the Church seems to be so reticent to embrace these new technologies. "Mother Nature always bats last."

With this catch phrase he was teaching us that there are often unintended consequences to new reproductive technologies that we did not expect... consequences that would have to be born by the child conceived through these means. If this study proves that there is a connection between IVF and autism, it will be just another piece of evidence that the Church is indeed wise in its cautious approach to granting its imprimatur to new innovations, especially when it will be the innocent who will have to bear the costs. 

Quebec doctor probes possible autism, in-vitro fertilization link

29 August, 2011

A request for prayers for a departed priest

High Altar at St. Alphonus Parish where Fr. Alfie was pastor for many years
Fr. Alfie T. Harrington, who was my pastor when I was the assistant priest in St.  Alphonsus Parish in Chapeau, Qc. has died this morning. I was also privileged to follow him as pastor of that same parish.

Fr. Alf was a priest of the 'old mode'... but he was an excellent priest as well. I would ask you please to pray for the repose of his soul. I believe he will be well received by God, but we could all use the spiritual assistance for none of us die as saints.


Please remember him in your prayers.   Fr. Tim

A priest’s nightmare | Fr. Z's Blog – What Does The Prayer Really Say?

This priest was a fool. He should have immediately gone to the Police to report the extortion. He would have had nothing to fear. It was stupid of him to acquiesce to this extortion... no matter what his fears about his 'reputation' being ruined. 

A priest’s nightmare | Fr. Z's Blog – What Does The Prayer Really Say?

Natural disasters a warning to D.C. - Alexander Burns - POLITICO.com

Really? Then who was responsible for these disasters when the Republicans are in power?

Michele Bachmann: Natural disasters a warning to D.C. - Alexander Burns - POLITICO.com

American Theocracy Revisited - NYTimes.com

American Theocracy Revisited - NYTimes.com

Handwriting through the ages: An abridged history of English script - CNN.com

Handwriting through the ages: An abridged history of English script - CNN.com

22 August, 2011

Gone for a few days. Back on the 26th!!

Folks, I'll be absent from the blog for the next six days as I head off for my annual retreat. This year I am heading deep into the woods of Northwestern Quebec once again to spend five days alone in a cabin where none of the usual distractions of the outside world can interfere with the spiritual conversations that take place during such a poustinia.* 

With my Kindle loaded with spiritual material to read and refer to, and together with my trusty canine sidekick, Mateo, I'll journey about 300 km (most of it on logging roads) to reach my poustinia cabin. The last five miles will be by boat, courtesy of the cabin's owner who will return on Friday morning to bring me back as the retreat comes to a close. I'll spend five days and nights on an uninhabited lake in prayer, study and rest. Five days when the only person who will be able to reach me is God. 

It will be heaven. 

I ask your prayers during the week ahead. That I will listen well and heed the wisdom that God reveals within me during these days dedicated to He and I alone. You will all be remembered in my prayers and masses throughout the week. 

Fr. Tim

21 August, 2011

10 things the Belief Blog learned in its first year – CNN Belief Blog - CNN.com Blogs

10 things the Belief Blog learned in its first year – CNN Belief Blog - CNN.com Blogs

The real story of World Youth Day

David Warren's latest column in the Ottawa Citizen on the subject of World Youth Day 2011 in Madrid, Spain.

The real story of World Youth Day

Pope urges pilgrims in Spain to spread faith - World - CBC News

Another successful World Youth Day with in excess of 1 million young people gathered to listen to and celebrate with the Pope. It must be clear for anyone with eyes to see that this speaks not to the charisma of the pontiff (as may have been the case with Pope JPII), but because they want to grow in their knowledge and practice of the RC faith.


Things may be bleak in specific cities, regions or even countries, but viewed from a larger perspective, the faith is indeed alive and growing! A wonderful thought to keep in mind!

Pope urges pilgrims in Spain to spread faith - World - CBC News

Americans Have Lost Faith In Religious Leaders And Church Attendance, New Book Says

Americans Have Lost Faith In Religious Leaders And Church Attendance, New Book Says

HOW PSYCHOTHERAPISTS HELPED SEND AN INNOCENT PRIEST TO PRISON

A RAM IN THE THICKET: HOW PSYCHOTHERAPISTS HELPED SEND AN INNOCENT PRIEST TO PRISON

Planned Parenthood to end abortions at 7 Arizona sites

H/T to Cliff Pyle for this article.

Planned Parenthood to end abortions at 7 Arizona sites

19 August, 2011

WAY TOO CUTE!!! Kitten vs Dog

An essential point in how to remember when dealing with the 'enemies' of the Church

In a current article on the Holy Post I responded to a comment in which someone wrote about the appropriateness of 'hating' the RC Church. I thought I'd share my response here as it is a subject I'd enjoy discussing further.


-------------------------

Prime: I believe that you have hit upon an essential issue, if inadvertently. In your post, you use the language of 'hate' as in it is OK to hate the RC Church. Catholics do not use that lexicography. Christ taught us not to hate but to love our enemies.

You see, we do not disagree with those who see the Church as the 'enemy' for she herself views the forces ranged against her in similar fashion. It may not be politic today to use the language of being 'soldiers for Christ' - but surely training an army to fight for Christ means that there is an enemy to confront.

But the Church calls us to respond by loving our enemies (in the filial sense of the word) so as to perhaps revivify the initial spark of grace that exists within all. We are called to be agents of expiation for those in need by reflecting to them the Christ who lives within us.

You see, that's what is appealing about the Church for Catholics. It isn't that we aren't distressed 'in extremus' by the sins of her members, clergy and hierarchy. Anyone with any sense of justice within them could not help but be revolted and dismayed by their sin. It's just that that is not the totality of what we see and admire when we look at the barque of Peter. We see and hear a beauty and wisdom that illuminates the mind and inspires the heart.

I guess that's the difference between speaking the languages of love and hate.

Thank you for making this clear to me this morning. You've given me a wonderful meditation to ponder this beautiful sunny Ottawa Valley day.

Fr. Tim

The most important thing I will ever write on this blog | Fr. Z's Blog – What Does The Prayer Really Say?

The most important thing I will ever write on this blog | Fr. Z's Blog – What Does The Prayer Really Say?

10 August, 2011

New Philadelphia archbishop says church singled out unfairly on sex abuse | GazetteNET

Want to know why Archbishop Chaput is the right choice to clean up the mess in Philadelphia and why he'll bring a renaissance to the Catholic Church there? Then this article is for you!

New Philadelphia archbishop says church singled out unfairly on sex abuse | GazetteNET

Muslims Attack Christian Village in Egypt -- 1 Murdered, Homes Looted and Torched

Muslims Attack Christian Village in Egypt -- 1 Murdered, Homes Looted and Torched

Defiant Fr Roy Bourgeois Dismissed from Maryknolls. Soon from the Priesthood? - U.s. - Catholic Online

Defiant Fr Roy Bourgeois Dismissed from Maryknolls. Soon from the Priesthood? - U.s. - Catholic Online

Violence, Riots and Anarchy Continue in London, Archbishop Nichols Calls Catholics to Prayer - International - Catholic Online

"You will be hearing of wars and rumors of wars. See that you are not frightened, for those things must take place, but that is not yet the end." (Mt 24:6)

Violence, Riots and Anarchy Continue in London, Archbishop Nichols Calls Catholics to Prayer - International - Catholic Online

08 August, 2011

TSX, Dow losses deepen - Business - CBC News

It is important to ensure that we be open to the needs of our neighbors, friends and family members during these stressful financial times. Advice is often worth the price it costs and is usually in great supply. Prudence and wisdom are virtues that are perennially in short supply. All believers need to pray for those in financial trouble, especially the unemployed with families who are approving (or have reached) the end of their Employment Insurance benefits. I have witnessed the human cost of these times in the lives of local families, those with jobs tend to have at least one parent living and working in another part of the country. Stock Market falls like we witnessed today wipe billions (if not trillions) of dollars from the economy as the valuation of companies experienced a free-fall, dropping over 630 points by the end of trading.


Things will not likely improve dramatically before the American's get their fiscal policies in order, something that is unlikely to happen given the chasm that separates the two political parties. Given the way that they are reacting in the wake of today's collapse (one of the 10 worst days in NY stock exchange history), there seems little hope of things improving before the 2012 election. They are in as deep and vicious a gridlock as I can remember with political opponents holding contemptuous opinions of each other. Right now, I doubt they could successfully organize a tea party without a fight breaking out!


Such is life for we who live north of the 49th parallel. As Pierre Trudeau once remarked, managing the Canadian economy was like being a mouse lying down with an elephant. Every twitch of the pachyderm causes concern in the mouse. When it shudders with a cold, the mouse runs the risk of losing its life as the poor pachyderm is plagued with a fiscal flu.


Stock Markets tanking across the globe... riots in the streets of London... these are not great days for the west. The Soviet Union may have fallen apart due to a financial collapse. Russia, under the Putin oligarchy is an economic power on the rise. The Americans... not so much. I wonder who really won the Cold War? Certainly seems less than clear at this point. That should provide plenty of fodder for the neo-cons to contemplate in the days to come. Maybe they might come to their economic senses and move towards a more balanced approach to US fiscal policy.


TSX, Dow losses deepen - Business - CBC News

Why companies won't hire - CNN.com

An excellent analysis of the current economic challenges that confront the Americans, and by extension we here in Canada from David Frum. He demonstrates a clear understanding of the forces that affects corporate executives as they chart a path of financial survival if not success.


Corporate profits are running stronger than they have been in years. The penultimate example being the recent report which stated that Apple Corp. held more cash resources than does the US government... resource and oil companies are running almost as well. Recessions are also times when weaker firms either fail or become sufficiently enfeebled that they are purchased by larger holding companies (such as the one that Mitt Romney ran) which usually break up the company and sell off its assets, making a quick profit for their shareholders but extinguishing the employment for entire communities. 

This has been our experience here in Mattawa. Smaller, weaker mills were purchased by larger corporate competitors using government funds as incentive. Alas, as soon as the period expired during which they promised to keep the mill open as a condition of receiving various government grants and tax holiday's, (one or two years), they closed the operation, removed the capital equipment purchased over the past two years (with accelerated depreciation to apply to offset taxes due on profit at taxpayer expense) and sent to either American, Chinese or Latin/South American countries where they find lower operating environments. 

Citizens throughout the Greater Ottawa Valley of eastern Ontario have suffered this experience. From the collapse of tech giants such as Mitel and Corel, to the small local mills purchased by multinationals to obtain their timber rights to feed large mills further away. Municipalities who while never actually prospering in any grand style, have sustained employment since the earliest days of our nation, developing a strong middle class as a result. Now that the resource industry payroll has disappeared, (and even as the profits of its proprietor corporation prospered)  the economic welfare of the area now depends more and more on the taxes taken from what is quickly becoming an economically devastated and shrinking middle class.


The good times that came with being hewers of wood have come to an end and the workforce of the area fear becoming the 'cod fishermen' of the early 21st century; communities shaken in confidence and dependent upon government support to survive. 

In other places and in previous times like these, the RC Church in Canada became an agent of economic activity, organizing cooperatives and credit unions throughout the regions. The grew into financial institutions dedicated upon servicing local enterprises. This is on top of many messages

Why companies won't hire - CNN.com

In a Jerusalem tunnel, a glimpse of an ancient war - CTV News

Ahh... the battle between Church and State seems to have a very long history indeed!

In a Jerusalem tunnel, a glimpse of an ancient war - CTV News

Catholic Irish priest still finds great joy and fulfillment in Church | Irish News | IrishCentral

Catholic Irish priest still finds great joy and fulfillment in Church | Irish News | IrishCentral

06 August, 2011

We can only watch: A reflection from David Warren on how Ramadan has been corrupted by Islamic zealots





We can only watch

Poll shows 56 per cent of Canadians think immigrants burden social services

Poll shows 56 per cent of Canadians think immigrants burden social services

Do we have a 'right' to die?


Do we have a 'right' to die? This is the fundamental question that the courts in Canada are being asked to answer in the case of Gloria Taylor, a woman in British Columbia who has contracted ALS and who is petitioning Canadian courts to allow a third party to assist her to suicide at a time of her choosing.


Matt Gurney has advocated in these pages of the Holy Post Blog that Ms. Taylor be granted her request. In his opinion, her 'right' to a death with dignity should not be impeded by what he calls a 'well intended' law which infringes upon her right to determine the method and timing of her death. His passionate advocacy is fired by his description of the horrific prognosis that she as her disease progresses: progressive degeneration of her muscle functions leading to the loss of her motor functioning, trapping a cogent mind inside an increasingly useless body. It is a sentence that no one would want to face. But does such a fate mean that we have a right to demand of our society to terminate our life at the time of our choosing ? Is the fact that suffering faces us as our bodies decay mean that we have the right to 'opt out' at government expense? I think not.


We do not have a "right to die." Many people now speak of such a thing, but without the proper understanding of the terminology they use. A "right" is a moral claim. We do not have a claim on death. Rather, death has a claim on us! We do not decide when our life will end, any more than we decided when it began. Much less does someone else -- a relative, a doctor, or a legislator--decide when our life will end. None of us is master over life and death.


What we do have a right to is proper care. It is never "care" in any sense of the word, to terminate life, even if that life is full of suffering. We have no right to terminate life.


There are groups in our country pushing for the "right" to use lethal injections on the seriously ill, or to remove their food and water. We must oppose such moral nonsense with all our strength. And the time to oppose it is now, before it becomes solidified in law. Why? Because as a society we are judged by our care and concern for the weakest among us: the sick, underprivileged, the widow and the orphan. These are the people who are most in danger of having their lives judged as being 'not worth living', not for any reason other than able bodied or healthy people can not conceive of wanting to live under conditions which the disadvantaged and sick must daily face. It is our fear of pain and the perceived future inability to manifest our wishes and desires in the face of illness that is leading us to false create a 'right to die'.


If assisted suicide is not the answer, what is? The answer offered through our medical system is palliative care. The WHO defines it as an approach that improves the quality of life of patients and their families facing the problem associated with life-threatening illness, through the prevention and relief of suffering by means of early identification and impeccable assessment and treatment of pain and other problems, physical, psychosocial and spiritual. It is the act of offering to accompany one through the final stages of life for it is the fear of facing death alone that is a root fear for all humanity.


Ms. Taylor is asking that the state provide the means and assistance needed to end her life whenever she sees fit. The state should respond not with a needle or a prescription, but by ensuring that she does not suffer needlessly, nor walk her final days alone. It is to help her see her death not as an enemy to be cheated but a natural part of the entirety of her existence. To help her find meaning in her final days rather than offering the meaningless termination of life in a fruitless attempt to escape the indignities of dying.

Thoughts on the arrest of Linda Gibbons on Aug. 4, 2011 | LifeSiteNews.com

Thoughts on the arrest of Linda Gibbons on Aug. 4, 2011 | LifeSiteNews.com

What is ‘Roman Catholic Political Philosophy’? » First Thoughts | A First Things Blog

What is ‘Roman Catholic Political Philosophy’? » First Thoughts | A First Things Blog

Pondering and Parsing Pithy Sayings | Archdiocese of Washington

Pondering and Parsing Pithy Sayings | Archdiocese of Washington

04 August, 2011

Sorry, Mr Weigel: the Irish Church has problems, but to call Ireland the ‘epicentre of European anti-Catholicism’ is simply wrong | CatholicHerald.co.uk

Sorry, Mr Weigel: the Irish Church has problems, but to call Ireland the ‘epicentre of European anti-Catholicism’ is simply wrong | CatholicHerald.co.uk

If The Protestant Canon Were True… | St. Joseph's Vanguard

If The Protestant Canon Were True… | St. Joseph's Vanguard

Is Catholicism in the United States healthy or in decline?

Openers: Is Catholicism in the United States healthy or in decline?

No Homophobia - George Weigel - National Review Online

No Homophobia - George Weigel - National Review Online

Livingston man should not be hassled for wooden cross in yard | NJ.com

Livingston man should not be hassled for wooden cross in yard | NJ.com

03 August, 2011

What Every Catholic Needs to Know about witnessing your faith at work

What Every Catholic Needs to Know about witnessing your faith at work

Are Biblical Laws About Homosexuality Eternal?

Richard Elliott Friedman: Are Biblical Laws About Homosexuality Eternal?

Rate your priest on new Website - The West Australian

Rate your priest on new Website - The West Australian

Ion-powered Dawn begins study of asteroid Vesta | The Space Shot - CNET News

Ion-powered Dawn begins study of asteroid Vesta | The Space Shot - CNET News

Book Review: The Church and the New Media | St. Joseph's Vanguard

Book Review: The Church and the New Media | St. Joseph's Vanguard

Calling things by their proper names

The Impractical Catholic: Calling things by their proper names

Professional Scientist and Amateur Philosopher Stephen Hawking Wanders as he Wonders in a New TV Series | Archdiocese of Washington

Professional Scientist and Amateur Philosopher Stephen Hawking Wanders as he Wonders in a New TV Series | Archdiocese of Washington

01 August, 2011

Losing track | Sylvia's Site

Sylvia's Site is the preeminent Canadian site dedicated to the sex abuse scandals within the Catholic Church. She is a faithful and 'faith-filled' woman who loves her Church but detests the manner in which priests have behaved and Bishops have obfuscated the cause of justice for victims who've suffer at the hands of predators.


In this recent offering on her blog she shares some correspondence that a friend of the blog sent to the Irish Prime Minister and the Archbishop of Dublin, congratulating both for their courageous voices raised in defense of Irish children. The context Sylvia offers truly helps to crystallize the issue seen through the eyes of the victim.


She is to be commended for her excellent blog!


Losing track | Sylvia's Site

More on the Irish Scandal from the Emerald Isle herself

The Thirsty Gargoyle: The Cloyne Report: Tackling Prevailing Myths

Ireland and the Church

Ireland and the Church

FLASH! Fr. Z agrees with the Huffington Post. Imminent fall of sky to follow. | Fr. Z's Blog – What Does The Prayer Really Say?

AMEN! AMEN! AMEN! Probably the best summation of the Church's apparent inability to embrace the opportunities that this digital media that I've read to date.


FLASH! Fr. Z agrees with the Huffington Post. Imminent fall of sky to follow. | Fr. Z's Blog – What Does The Prayer Really Say?

Preserving Our Faith: +Dolan (NY) answers the cries for 'reform' from within and outside of the Church

Archbishop Tim Dolan (NY) posted this excellent article on his blog addressing the current spate of cries calling for radical 'reforms' or 'harmonization' of Church teaching to current mores. 


Gotta love these JPII & B16 appointments to the episcopate. Some have failed to make the grade but many have excelled at 'preaching, governing and sanctifying' the Church and effectively engaging with modern culture at the same time. +Dolan, +Chaput in the US, +Smith, +Prendergast, +Henry and +Collins in Canada are a few who rank  among the best of them! What ever they offer is well worth reading for any serious Catholic.

Preserving Our Faith « The Gospel in the Digital Age

"Non Prævalebunt." How and Why Benedict XVI Is Standing Up to the Attacks

Pope Benedict suffers slings and arrows from without and within... yet he continues apace... THANK GOD!

I absolutely love this joke! After all, if we can't laugh at ourselves, we are taking life way too seriously!

This is an old joke by Emo Philips, once ranked as the funniest religious joke of all time:
Once I saw this guy on a bridge about to jump. I said, "Don't do it!" He said, "Nobody loves me." I said, "God loves you. Do you believe in God?"


He said, "Yes." I said, "Are you a Christian or a Jew?" He said, "A Christian." I said, "Me, too! Protestant or Catholic?" He said, "Protestant." I said, "Me, too! What franchise?" He said, "Baptist." I said, "Me, too! Northern Baptist or Southern Baptist?" He said, "Northern Baptist." I said, "Me, too! Northern Conservative Baptist or Northern Liberal Baptist?"


He said, "Northern Conservative Baptist." I said, "Me, too! Northern Conservative Baptist Great Lakes Region, or Northern Conservative Baptist Eastern Region?" He said, "Northern Conservative Baptist Great Lakes Region." I said, "Me, too!"


Northern Conservative Baptist Great Lakes Region Council of 1879, or Northern Conservative Baptist Great Lakes Region Council of 1912?" He said, "Northern Conservative Baptist Great Lakes Region Council of 1912." I said, "Die, heretic!" And I pushed him over.
Like most good jokes, it has more than an ounce of truth. One of the most important questions Christians should be asking is this: “When I think that the Church is wrong on doctrine, what should I do?


Click on the link below for the rest of the article

Shameless Popery: The Funniest Religious Joke of All Time? Or a Painful Truth?

Winehouse, Breivik and Deadly Ideals - NYTimes.com

Winehouse, Breivik and Deadly Ideals - NYTimes.com

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