19Oct Mission Impossible – or is it?

Seamus Ahearne gives his thoughts on "mission" informed by his own life experiences.
"I’m a believer:
My Mission here may distract me, out to the byways and highways where the Church is forgotten and where the gibberish of sacred language is irrelevant. But I cannot go out there, unless I am enjoying the living God, where I am. I need to be taking off my shoes, seeing the burning bush, hearing the gentle breeze and finding the teasing- God of the caster-oil plant (Jonah.) I need to be telling people and showing people that God and Church, isn’t like the scarcely remembered version, which is a caricature of the Christ-picture from the Gospels. But I shouldn’t tell anyone, anything, if I am not alive myself. Possibly, the only Mission I have now, is to create some kind of oasis, where the refreshment of God, makes a little sense in the desert of our modern world. I have to do this with total humility and must exude some personal serenity, believing that nothing can ever happen, that is beyond the goodness and love of God. Mission now might just mean: Believing and living as if I/we believe."

08Oct Don’t let life get you down

Seamus Ahearne reflects on life and death, and threats of death, amid all the other day to day happenings in a busy life.
"The brush strokes of nature are also hints and whispers of life. They scatter the colours carelessly. They ask us to notice them and not to forget them. But maybe like nature and autumn, we need to throw around the unruly and incomplete brush strokes in our ministry. The unfinished days; the little celebrations; the Godliness of daily life; the laugher among us; the colours that we cannot take for granted. Possibly nature is talking to us. We too can be so serious (so immersed in the quicksand of problems). What are we doing to God’s world? Is that love song wasted on us?"

01Oct The bishop and the vaccine

We carry a transcript of an interview between Brendan Hoban and radio presenter Monica Morley on 'Faith Alive' on Mid West Radio concerning the intervention by Bishop Alphonsus Cullinane in the debate on the HPV vaccine for young girls.

30Sep Breaking open priesthood

A speech by Vincent Long Van Nguyen OFM Conv, Bishop of Parramatta, Sydney, gives food for thought about the future of priesthood in the church.
".... these vestiges of the Tridentine Model of priesthood are powerful symbols of the clerical class. It is part of the ecclesiology that emphasises the ontological change and separation of the ordained from the faithful. It is a powerful ingredient and ideal condition for the disease of clericalism to fester.
I hold that it is time for this exalted model of priesthood to be consigned to the past. Instead, we must rediscover the specific and full charism of the priesthood within the matrix of the universal priesthood of the faithful. The priesthood cannot be lived fully apart from the community of disciples."
.....
"If we are to break open the priesthood and allow the ministries of the baptised to flourish, I think we will need to revisit the clerical and patriarchal culture along with its many institutional dynamics such as titles, privileges, customs, structures etc.".

30Sep Partners but never Rivals

Brian Eyre, writing from Brazil, outlines his vision of how priesthood may evolve in the (near) future.

26Sep Child Sexual Abuse in the Catholic Church: An Interpretive Review of the Literature and Public Inquiry Reports

https://www.nytimes.com/2017/09/12/world/australia/australia-catholic-church-child-abuse.html

The New York Times carries an interesting article about a study that examines child sexual abuse worldwide in the Roman Catholic Church that has found the Australian church has done less to safeguard children in its care than its counterparts in similar countries have.

The report, released on Wednesday by the Center for Global Research at the Royal Melbourne Institute of Technology, also found that the church’s requirement that priests be celibate was a major risk factor for abuse.

24Sep Coming into the light

Brian Fahy shares a reflection on counting the blessings of life

18Sep A long weekend of harvesting

Seamus Ahearne writes of "A long weekend of harvesting";
"I like the extravagance of God. My little eyes and mind are sometimes too small to notice. The Garden of Eden is everywhere – if my dull heart could only see it. What has been brought to the Table of our life? What do we bring to the Table of Life?"

17Sep The Wahhabi Ideology

Sean McDonagh writes about the origins and spread of a form of Sunni Islam called Wahhabism that is having profound effects on world affairs.

16Sep We are Living with the Reality of Climate Change

Seán McDonagh in the wake of recent hurricanes in the Caribbean reminds us of what Pope Francis has said about climate change; "the scientific community has been “clear and precise” in linking human activities to the ongoing climate crisis…..,, Climate change is a “serious matter over which we cannot make jokes.”




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