Columns

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Columns in the WCR

Prophetic voices offer us new truths

Lydia Cristini
June 29, 2015
Fifteenth Sunday in Ordinary Time
July 12, 2015

Today's First Reading is an example of God sending a prophet to communicate his will to his people. This prophet is an unlikely candidate and is rejected. Jesus told us no prophet is accepted in his hometown. Who are the prophets of our own age? Who are the people speaking God's truth? On a global scale, it is safe to say today's prophets include people who speak out for the voiceless, the poor, the rejected, the different, the displaced, the disenfranchised, the de-humanized.

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Canadian priest was murdered 50 years ago

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June 29, 2015

Fifty years after his murder on June 22, 1965 in the Dominican Republic, efforts are being made to remember Scarboro Father Art MacKinnon. According to a report in The Catholic Register, Bishop Brian Dunn of Antigonish was to celebrate a memorial Mass for MacKinnon in his childhood home of New Waterford, N.S. MacKinnon, the son of a Cape Breton coal miner, was 27 in 1959 when he was ordained a priest and soon after was sent to the Dominican Republic where the Scarboro Fathers were active.

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Pope will raise development issues on trip to U.S.

Joe Gunn
June 29, 2015

Gird your loins! Pope Francis will soon make the headlines again. Not long after the huge global stir caused by the pontiff's encyclical on the environment, Laudato Si, the pope will again be making news this autumn. On Sept. 24 he'll be the first pope ever to address the U.S. Congress (where both speaker of the House John Boehner and Democratic House minority leader Nancy Pelosi are Catholics).

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Did Jesus belong to a group or sect?

Sr. Louise Zdunich
June 29, 2015

To what sect or group did Jesus belong? Was he a Pharisee or a Sadducee or what?

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Teach a Haitian orphan to sew and you can clothe him or her for life

Mark Pickup
June 29, 2015

There is an old proverb that says "Give a man a fish and you feed him for a day; teach a man to fish and you feed him for a lifetime." Indeed, the best form of charity is to show people how to be self-reliant. It's not the only form of charity; often immediate measures are crucial to save people affected by disaster. But the best long-term results come from helping people to be self-reliant.

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Dublin archbishop calls for Church self-examination

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June 15, 2015

Dublin's Archbishop Diarmuid Martin is surely correct in his call for the Church to examine its failure to communicate its teachings in a country which not long ago lived and breathed Catholicism. The May 22 referendum in which 62 per cent of voters said the country should legalize same-sex marriage indicates something important is not getting through. Indeed, if a similar referendum were held in Canada, Catholic support for same-sex marriage might well exceed that in Ireland.

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Jesus' only 'secret' is in the open for all to know

Fr. Ron Rolheiser, omi
June 15, 2015

Everyone longs to know something that's secret, to know something that others don't know, but that you know, and the knowledge of which gives you some insight and advantage over others who are outside the inner circle of that secret. It has always been so. Historically this is called Gnosticism, which is the belief that a secret insight into spiritual truth is the key to salvation.

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God's storm is the pangs of a new birth

Brett Fawcett
June 15, 2015
Twelfth Sunday in Ordinary Time
June 14, 2015

Today's Gospel reading tells the familiar story of Jesus, asleep in the boat in the midst of a storm, awakened by his agitated apostles to calm the wind and the waves. Mark presumably recorded this story as a consolation to the persecuted Church, but what consolation are believers supposed to derive from it? Are we supposed to assume that Jesus will calm all the turbulent problems of our lives?

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Gov't leadership required to move to reconciliation with First Nations

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June 15, 2015

The truth has been told; reconciliation is yet to come. Reconciliation with Canada's Aboriginal people – over the residential school morass, yes, but also over the whole range of issues afflicting indigenous people – will require political will. During the nine years of the current federal government, there has been no hint of a political will to put relations between Canada's original peoples and the dominant settler culture on a more equitable footing. The Harper government began its term in office by walking away from the Kelowna Accord, a landmark agreement that would have gone a long way toward dealing with some of the pressing issues facing Aboriginal communities.

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Reconciliation is not one-stop shopping

Douglas Roche
June 15, 2015

The recent photo of Britain's Prince Charles shaking hands with Gerry Adams, the leader of the former political wing of the Irish Republican Army that killed Charles' uncle, Earl Louis Mountbatten, 36 years ago, stirred me deeply. It is flashing through my mind now as I watch the reports of the devastating findings of Canada's Truth and Reconciliation Commission. Prince Charles and Adams appear to be reconciled, well, somewhat. The treatment of thousands of aboriginal people in residential schools across Canada is now labeled "cultural genocide." What a powerful term!

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