Notice from the Association of Catholics in Ireland
Today's Homily Resource
The mystery of growth
The seed growing secretly suggests the mystery of growth. The farmer works hard to sow the seed, but then he has to wait. In a way he does not fully understand, the seed grows of his own accord...
Soline Humbert reminds us of an international day of prayer against human trafficking on 08 February.
Tony Flannery reviews a new book by Angela Hanley, Athlone based theologian.
Whose A La Carte Menu will be launched on Sunday, February 1st, in the Shamrock Lodge Hotel, Athlone at 5.00pm.
A gathering of peoples
Chris McDonnell responding to Brendan Hoban's article and recent events sees hope in the meeting of Pope Francis and Hindu priest Kurakkal Somasundaram and its message of "peaceful understanding between peoples, of religious tolerance and of care not to offend."
However the reality of the world is that some will continue to go on insulting anyone they choose and "This is the reality we must live with, always willing to respond to what we perceive as unjust comment, always preserving the right for opinion to be expressed, but always careful that violent reaction is not the outcome of thoughtless words."
Brendan Hoban, in the Western People, muses about the rights and responsibilities of freedom of speech.
"While the right to free expression is important and should be defended, it’s not an absolute right. And those who are prepared to hurt and offend should not see it as a fail-safe or catch-all defence for their bigotry, of whatever hue."
Brian Eyre expresses concerns about the illogical norms that are being followed in ordaining married men, former Anglican priests, while excluding Catholic priests who wish to marry from official ministry.
Let Battle Commence
Gabriel Daly OSA writes that " In a body as large and as culturally diverse as the Catholic Church, discrepant and irreconcilable attitudes are inevitable. We should try to live with them, not pretend that it is necessary – or even desirable – to smooth them over. "
Gabriel reminds us that "The truth and the will of God may actually be found in the clash of ideas and convictions expressed freely and without the threat of institutional interference."
Sean McDonagh tells us that the most important part of the forthcoming encyclical on the environment by Pope Francis is that it develops a credible and adequate theology of creation.
Australia's catholic bishops have produced a new questionnaire of 30 questions, based on the 46 proposed by the Vatican, to survey Catholics' attitudes to issues relating to family life. The consultation is to help inform October's Synod on the Family.
Michael Commane OP in a column for INM Irish regionals says that statements from Pope Francis and the German Bishops set him thinking. He found what they had to say " ... heart warming and must give hope to those who pray to an open and forgiving God. How great would it be to see far more of a church that stressed prudence and compassion over authoritarianism and discipline."