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'Gaudium et Spes' reflected the spirit of post-war Europe

November 3, 2014
GLEN ARGAN
WESTERN CATHOLIC REPORTER

The Pastoral Constitution on the Church in the Modern World (Gaudium et Spes) was the crowning achievement of the Second Vatican Council. There is no document remotely like it in the history of the Church, and it should be regarded as an act of providence, rather than deliberate design, that Vatican II was able to produce such a statement. Gaudium et Spes arose out of the folding-together of various documents the council was preparing and giving those documents a more solid theological foundation than had been found in earlier Catholic social teaching.

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Media bias is different than what writer said

November 3, 2014

This is a response to Celia Paz's letter in the Oct. 6 WCR. We tend to agree that mainstream media and social media coverage of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict tends to be biased and constrained. However, we are not sure what coverage Paz is referring to because the mainstream media we hear and read commonly portray Israel as an aggressor.

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L'Arche offers lifein the heart of God

November 3, 2014

I would like to thank Glen Argan for the article entitled "Church should cherish hidden life of Nazareth" (WCR, Sept. 22). As a stay-at-home mom with three young children, I do agree that it can at times feel lonely and unsatisfying leading a "hidden," ordinary life, dedicated to the largely thankless task of raising a family.

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Canada drags its heels as Church speaks clearly on climate change

Bob McKeon

November 3, 2014

Environmental concerns have been very much in the news over the past weeks. Last month, on the occasion of the UN Summit Climate, more than 300,000 people marched together in New York to support a call for effective and timely action on climate change. There is a strong sense of urgency. Unless major changes are made in current governmental policies, practices and commitments, it is almost certain that global warming will exceed two degrees C by 2100, the generally accepted limit by scientific and government authorities around the world. National leaders came from around the world to speak, with our prime minister being a notable exception.

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As days grow shorter, it is time to pray by flickering candles

Lasha Morningstar

November 3, 2014

Night comes sooner. Mornings later. Halloween is just past. That's usually when it's the first time we light a candle in the fall. Fat, juicy pumpkins are hollowed out, the seeds spread under the trees for the birds and then a jolly face carved in the front. A thick white candle is lit, a few drops dripped down to the inside base to give needed support. The flame is blown out, and the candle is placed inside the grinning lantern. At dusk, the candle is lit. (Wooden matches are safest.)

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Church, Caesar are uneasy partners

WCR Logo

November 3, 2014

One unfortunate fallout of the extensive media coverage of the bishops' synod on the family is that it plays into the widespread perception that the only societal issues with which the Catholic Church is concerned are those dealing with human life, the family and sex. Of course, the Church is and ought to be vitally concerned with those issues, but there are many others as well. Coincidentally, the end of the synod fell next to a Sunday when the Gospel reading included Jesus' much-abused statement, "Give to Caesar the things that are Caesar's and to God the things that are God's" (Matthew 22.21). The statement is misunderstood when it is used to assert that the Church should not concern itself with political matters.

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Talents to be used for Christ's mission

John Connelly

November 3, 2014
33rd Sunday in Ordinary Time
November 16, 2014

Talents. We all have them. Some are used, some undeveloped, some buried completely. The parable of the talents reminds us we are here for a purpose. Are we living the mission we are created to live? Are we using our talents to shine the light of Christ in our world today? All of us have probably wondered if the life we are living is the one we are destined to live. We question God and question ourselves.

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Terrorism an aberration as passion for peace prevails

Douglas Roche

November 3, 2014

The flight map showed our plane flying directly over Westport, a town in County Mayo on the west coast of Ireland. In 1842, my great-grandfather Michael Roche sailed with his bride Ann Keenan from Westport to the "new world" in a wretched trip that took six weeks to reach Quebec City. Now, here I was in the comfort of a jetliner streaking through the skies at 800 kilometres an hour with the comfort of home only a few hours away. I have always been grateful to my great-grandfather for his courage. The early stages of the potato famine had struck Ireland and life was undoubtedly hard, but it must have taken enormous determination to set out across the Atlantic Ocean to build a new life.

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No inevitability to Canada's future

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November 3, 2014

During the Oct. 22 lockdown in Ottawa following the murder of armed forces reservist Cpl. Nathan Cirillo and the subsequent killing of Michael Zehaf-Bibeau, a reporter for a national media outlet wrote that Canada will never again be the same. One can appreciate the fear and anxiety a person would experience in such a situation without granting that our nation is forever altered. There will, no doubt, be greater security on Parliament Hill, a result of the increasingly dangerous times in which we live. Yet, the strength of a nation will be found not in kneejerk responses to lunatics who – even if they are politically or religiously motivated – cause death and mayhem. Our strength is found in re-emphasizing our commitment to peace and freedom, building more intercultural dialogue and understanding, and renewing Canada's spiritual fabric.

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Roman basilica a sign of emperor's gratitude

Maria Kozakiewicz

November 3, 2014
Dedication of the Lateran Basilica
November 9, 2014

The huge Lateran Basilica whose anniversary of dedication we celebrate this Sunday has a long, interesting history. bA nice villa once stood there. Then, beginning in the second century, the land housed the barracks of the imper-ial cavalry bodyguard. The end of the third century and start of the fourth saw the most cruel and massive persecutions of Christians ever. Hundreds of thousands died in horrible ways because they refused to renounce Jesus. The Church seemed to be dying.

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