We are pleased to present below all posts archived in 'June, 2014'. If you still can't find what you are looking for, try using the search box.
When you walk the Via Appia, hoping not to twist an ankle on the large, flat stones of this ancient road, it is hard not to think about St. Peter. His sandals must have trod the same stones, his eyes seen the same or similar sights. Both sides of this ancient road were lined with tombs at that time, the more ancient ones closer to the city gates. The huge cylindrical mausoleum of the wealthy aristocratic woman Caecilla Metella must have still gleamed with marble decorations, reliefs of once-sacrificed bulls' heads, and heavy swags of fruit and leaves.
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In the last month, both the House of Commons and the Canadian Medical Association have called on the federal government to bring in a national palliative care strategy that will improve the quality of life for the dying. Federal Health Minister Rona Ambrose says she supports that call and will "continue" to discuss the upgrading of palliative care with the provinces.
No, it's not your imagination. Food does cost more. Even pet food brings a "my gosh!" to shoppers' lips. TD-Canada Trust economists predict our food bill will rise eight per cent this year. Utility bills, no matter how much one tries to cut down, climb. And were you sitting down when you opened your city tax bill? If you live in one of the areas where you really got hit, you wonder "How am I going to handle this?"
The last few years I have had a "growing" problem in my garden. I have a larger than usual lot in town, with more flowerbeds than I actually have time to look after properly. There are several beds of perennials further away from the house, on the edge of the property, that don't get the same level of attention as the ones next to the house. The result is that whatever weed issue those beds have tend to get more entrenched every year.
Living the Christian life is quite simple. All we need to do is remember the words of St. Josemaria Escriva: "In Baptism, our Father God has taken possession of our lives, has made us share in the life of Christ and has given us the Holy Spirit." If Christ has taken possession of my life, I need always to ask myself whether what I am doing is done in Christ or with indifference to Christ.
I was invited by a leading Catholic health care journal to write a theological reflection on the influence of Pope Francis in our ministry. Where does one begin? In the brief time since the Holy Father's election, the reach of his pastoral message has been enormous. Countless images and interview quotes have ignited the moral imagination of what it means to be Church, and how we are called to deeper expressions of service to the poor.
Why do we use readings from a Bible at Holy Mass which does not have an imprimatur? How do we know we are getting the truth?
I keep a bust of Ludwig van Beethoven on the mantle above the fireplace in my home. It reminds me of the human capacity to overcome adversity to achieve great things. When I doubt myself in my own acquired disability of multiple sclerosis, I listen to Beethoven particularly his Ninth Symphony written in near-total deafness but at the peak of his creative power His Ninth Symphony exemplifies a triumph of human spirit over adversity, sustained by a spark of God's love in a silent world. Although Beethoven used Schiller's Ode to Joy, there is a spirituality or mystical quality to Beethoven's Ninth.
Last December, the Supreme Court of Canada unanimously ruled that Canada's prostitution laws were unconstitutional. The judges gave Parliament one year to pass new laws that would pass the constitutional test. On June 4, Federal Justice Minister Peter MacKay introduced a new prostitution law (Bill C-36) into the House of Commons. Predictably, this proposed law has given rise to intense debates that go beyond predictable ideological divides. No government would voluntarily open up debates on prostitution legislation unless forced to by courts. Prostitution is a complex, difficult issue that defies a simple solution.
Seemingly miniscule changes in wording can hide major shifts in understanding. So it was when the Second Vatican Council's Constitution on Divine Revelation (Dei Verbum) spoke of "Tradition" in comparison with "traditions" referred to in the teaching of the 16th century Council of Trent. The shift from the plural to the singular and from a small "t" to a capital "T" augured a significant shift in Church teaching. For Joseph Ratzinger, this was but one sign in Dei Verbum indicating that Tradition had come to mean something quite different than the strict "passing on" of unchanging truths and laws inherited from the past.