WCR This Week

Jay's Articles

Knights help renew memorial for JP2's walk in Elk Island

July 11, 2016

The path walked by a saint is being renewed in Elk Island National Park. Parks Canada and five councils of the Knights of Columbus are installing five commemorative panels and replacing the bench on which St. John Paul II sat when he spent an afternoon at the park in September 1984. A bench and plaque had once been installed years ago to honour the pope's visit to Edmonton. But years of harsh northern Alberta weather took its toll on the wood.

God wants us to share in divine life - theologian

Matthew Leonard

July 11, 2016

The goal of this life is divinity, says theologian Matthew Leonard. As Christians, we want to reach a state of grace to "become partakers of the divine nature of God." "God, in this unprecedented act of love and mercy, offers us a share of who he is," Leonard said at the 21st annual Family Life Conference at Lac Ste. Anne. "We don't become omnipotent or omnipresent, but God offers us the ability to incorporate ourselves into his family. Through grace we become what he is. That's your dream and destiny, provided you accept it."

Aboriginal people flock to N. America's oldest shrine

July 11, 2016

For more than 300 years, First Nations people have been coming to the shrine at the Basilica of Ste. Anne-de-Beaupre, northeast of Quebec City. But for Blair Paul of the Membertou First Nation in Nova Scotia, it was only his second pilgrimage to North America's oldest Catholic shrine. "This is a peaceful place, very spiritual," said Paul, who made the journey with his daughter, Jada. "It's only the second time I come. But before me, my father came for 40 years. So I came to pray."

Sask. Bishop opens eyes, heart to life on the street

Bishop Donald Bolen

July 11, 2016

Thirty-six hours may not seem like a long time to be without a home, but for Bishop Donald Bolen of Saskatoon and nine others, it was long enough to better understand what being homeless is really like. The bishop, who lives in an apartment in central Saskatoon, said the brief experience of living on the streets opened his eyes. "The most powerful experience was the vulnerability of the situations that we were in," Bolen said after the June 17-18 event to raise funds for Sanctum Care Group.

Pope Benedict sees Pope Francis as his protector

July 11, 2016

In his first public address in almost a year, retired Pope Benedict XVI expressed his sincere gratitude to Pope Francis, saying that his goodness "from the first moment of your election, in every moment of my life here, touches me deeply." "More than the beauty found in the Vatican Gardens, your goodness is the place where I live; I feel protected," Pope Benedict said June 28. Pope Benedict, 89, also conveyed his hope that Pope Francis would continue to "lead us all on this path of divine mercy that shows the path of Jesus, to Jesus and to God."

Undeserved mercy brings joy, says Collins

Cardinal Thomas Collins

July 11, 2016

We should be gracious to other people as God is gracious to us, says Cardinal Thomas Collins of Toronto. "What a better world it would be if we were all more gracious to one another," he told hundreds of Catholics at Lac Ste. Anne July 1. "Mercy is profoundly important in our life in Christ. It is a thing of which we all have need." Collins, a former archbishop of Edmonton, was one of several speakers who addressed the Catholic Family Life Conference on the theme of mercy.

Pope stirs Turkish response by mentioning genocide

July 11, 2016

Pope Francis and his hosts on his June 24-26 visit to Armenia repeatedly used the word "genocide" to describe the deaths of 1.5 million Armenians at the hands of the Ottoman Turks between 1915 and 1918. It is a term that has raised the ire of the leaders of neighbouring Turkey in the past, and it did this time as well. Turkey recalled its Vatican ambassador for about a year after Pope Francis in April 2015 quoted St. John Paul II in describing the massacre as the first genocide of the 20th century.

Kasun to be ordained a bishop on Sept. 12

July 11, 2016

The episcopal ordination of Bishop-elect Robert Kasun will take place Monday, Sept. 12 at 7 p.m. in St. Joseph's Basilica in Edmonton. Kasun, pastor of Edmonton's St. Alphonsus and St. Clare parishes, has been appointed auxiliary bishop to the archbishop of Toronto, Cardinal Thomas Collins.

Ont. law society infringement on religious liberty upheld

July 11, 2016

Religious freedom advocates are troubled by a June 19 Ontario Court of Appeal ruling upholding the Law Society of Upper Canada's refusal to accredit the proposed law school at Trinity Western University (TWU). The appeal court ruled that although the law society's decision infringed on the right to religious freedom, that discrimination was justified.

Kasun shocked when named Toronto auxiliary bishop

Fr. Bob Kasun

June 27, 2016

Call Basilian Father Bob Kasun a most reluctant bishop. "I find this appointment shocking and really hard to handle," he said in a June 17 interview. When he started receiving mysterious phone messages from Ottawa one Friday afternoon, leaving a woman's first name and a number to call, he deleted them from his phone. Maybe it was a telephone solicitor or some sort of scam.