Columns

From the category archives: Opinion

Opinion

God bless us everyone, says Tiny Tim

Mark Pickup

December 5, 2011

Christmas is my favourite time of the year. I love everything about it including the smallest details and traditions commonly associated with the season.

Throughout the last half of November my wife resisted my requests to put up the Christmas tree. She reminded me that it takes up too much space in the living room for my electric wheelchair to manoeuvre easily. She was right. The Christmas tree stayed in the basement until Dec. 1.

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Push for euthanasia highlights crisis of the western world

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November 28, 2011

Two Canadian reports released in mid-November highlight the grave moral crisis facing Western society. First came the report of a committee of the Royal Society of Canada advocating the legalization of euthanasia, even for cases in which there has been no diagnosis of terminal illness.

The Royal Society report was followed two days later by that of a parliamentary committee calling for more effective palliative care, suicide prevention and elder abuse intervention across the land.

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Entry to heaven requires reference letter from the poor

Fr. Ron Rolheiser, omi

November 28, 2011

I doubt that any of us would have the raw courage to preach this, just as it is written in the Gospels, from any pulpit today. Yet Jesus meant it. Nobody gets to heaven without a letter of reference from the poor.

Now there's a whole series of challenges in this.

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Celebrate the virtue of each Advent week

Ralph Himsl

November 28, 2011
Second Sunday in Advent
December 4,2011

Some traditions assign particular, how shall I say – virtues to each Sunday in Advent: hope, peace, joy, love for each of the first to the fourth respectively.

Memory tells me that we mark the Third Sunday of Advent as Gaudete Sunday, quite in line with the tradition. As Catholics, we have a leaning toward historical roots that prefer Latin for an idea when we wish to assign it a special elegance. So we refer to the Third Sunday of Advent as Gaudete Sunday, always with the explanation, "Gaudete means rejoice".

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New missal offers courtly upgrade to enrich liturgy

Fr. Robert Barron

November 28, 2011

Commencing the First Sunday of Advent, the Church will be using a new translation of the Roman Missal. I would like to emphasize that this in no way represents a return to "the old Mass," for the Latin texts that provide the basis for the new translation were all approved after Vatican II.

So why the change? What had come increasingly to bother a number of bishops, priests and liturgists over the years was that the translation of the liturgical texts, made in some haste in the late sixties of the last century, was not sufficiently faithful to the Latin and was, at least in some instances, informed by questionable theological assumptions.

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Elder abuse: serious moral issue of our times

Gordon Self

November 28, 2011

Imagine the following: An elderly couple asks their niece to pick up some groceries for them. They give her their debit card and tell her to get some cash from the bank machine too.

She has committed to memory their PIN to use the card, and they trust her implicitly. After all, she looks after all their banking needs and reconciles every financial statement. Little do they know but she has been bilking hundreds of dollars for herself each month, not quite enough that the bank will become suspicious.

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Why is the collection plate put aside?

Sr. Louise Zdunich

November 28, 2011

I've noticed that when the collection plate is brought up to the altar with the bread and wine, the money is put aside or moved away from the altar. Does not that make the money offering unworthy of the altar and of blessing?

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Pro-life doesn't stop at the moment of birth

November 28, 2011
KELLY WILSON
SPECIAL TO THE WCR

A controversy arose this fall in Winnipeg surrounding the relationship between Catholic schools and anti-abortion activities such as the recently-ended 40 Days for Life campaign.

In the midst of this controversy, one letter to the Winnipeg Free Press caught my attention by its objection to the designation "anti-abortion." "Pro-life," the author of the letter said, was to be preferred over "anti-abortion."

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Church revitalized when Gospel challenges us to lives of holiness

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November 21, 2011

St. Anthony of the Desert was a wealthy landowner in the third century. Upon walking into church one day when he was 34, he heard Jesus’ words proclaimed: “If you would be perfect, go, sell what you possess and give it to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven; and come, follow me” (Matthew 19.21).

Anthony took those words literally. He gave away some of the family estate and sold the rest, giving the proceeds to the poor. He spent his remaining 57 years in the desert, living a life of asceticism and prayer, counselling people and inspiring the development of monasticism.

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Moral battles are won with reason, courtesy, respect

Fr. Ron Rolheiser, omi

November 21, 2011

Today, both within society and the churches, we are finding it ever more difficult to resolve differences because our conversations are shot through with non-civility, name-calling, character-assassination and disrespect.

What’s particularly worrying is that we do this in the name of truth, cause, the Gospel and Jesus. We are giving ourselves permission to hate, demonize and disrespect each other in God’s name. Our cause seems so important that, consciously or unconsciously, we give ourselves permission to bracket some of the essentials of Christian charity, namely respect, graciousness, love and forgiveness.

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