01Nov Vatican II; the ‘sure compass’ of Pope Francis

Richard R. Gaillardetz writing in the National Catholic Reporter maintains that Pope Francis' correcting Cardinal Sarah's misrepresentation of 'Magnum Principium' is but "another concrete confirmation of the pope's single-minded intention to realize the council's reformist agenda. He may be the first post-conciliar pope not to have played a role at Vatican II, but no pope has more comprehensively summoned forth the council's comprehensive call for reform and renewal."

28Oct Silence implies Consent – We must Speak Up! 

We Are Church International (WACI) is inviting us to join in supporting Pope Francis.

28Oct Spiritfest – A positive experience of church

Mary Smiddy, a member of Killeagh-Inch Pastoral Council, was recently involved in a "Spiritfest" which ran the last weekend of September.
Here she gives a report on a very successful event.
"At a time when the church gets much negative publicity I feel that much that is good in our churches and parishes is not acknowledged or recognised. Because of that I would like to share some of our experiences and learning over the Spiritfest weekend.
The event illustrates the vibrancy, excitement and joy that can be found in parishes throughout the country and what is possible with a little planning, preparation and willingness to try something different while remaining true to our faith and traditions."

22Oct Pope Francis Corrects Cardinal Sarah on Translation

Paddy Ferry offered the following as comments concerning the latest attempt by Cardinal Sarah to undo reforms to the liturgy and his challenge to the recent decision by Pope Francis granting authority to local conferences of bishops over the translation of liturgical texts.

These comments are carried here as a separate item due to the importance of the issue but also to highlight the opposition Pope Francis faces as he tries to decentralise decision making processes from departments in Rome. 
Also attached is commentary by Fr. Anthony Ruff from his praytellblog.com

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.




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