Last Updated: Friday - 09/24/2010
Week of February 28, 2000
WCR Letters to the Editor
Church is but one way to God
This is in response to John Norton's article "Pope stresses unique role of Christ" (WCR, Feb. 7), Charles Moore's article "Not all religions are created equal" (WCR, Feb. 14), and Pope John Paul's speech delivered to the Vatican Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith Jan. 28.
It can be unequivocally stated that all three mutually agree that salvation is possible only through the universal Church or by the acceptance of Jesus Christ as "the way, the truth and the life."
Pope John Paul's and John Norton's statement: "The Church is the sole means of salvation," does not leave much room for those outside of the Church, a Church claiming to hold "the keys of the kingdom of heaven." All is not lost, however, as they go on to say: "Nonetheless, non-Christians can attain heaven if they look for God with a sincere heart."
This prompts the question: Is the Church the sole means of salvation, or is she not? If she is, where then do all those who do not belong to the one and only salvific Church end up?
Furthermore, if it is true that Jesus Christ taught, as Charles Moore points out, "that the one and only way to God is through him," where then, one must ask, is the destination of those who never met or encountered Jesus?
To the foregoing, many Christian theologians are saying that the Gospel writers themselves had a diversity in attitude, both in the way they report Jesus' sayings and actions, and in what they actually report.
A number of Christian biblical scholars advocate that the more exclusivist passages attributed to Jesus, like "I am the way, and the truth, and the life" can be considered "love language" directed towards a particular faith community and is not intended for those outside the community.
They consider the phrase "but by me" only valid for those for whom Jesus is the Christ. In addition, earliest strands of the Gospels and other sources portray Jesus as placing little emphasis on belief in himself in order to be saved. He emphasized the importance of a radical change of heart and life.
Why is the Church still holding on to glory, power, riches and authority, while Jesus in the wilderness experience rejected these (Luke 4)?
Is it the fear that Jesus may be seen as less of a "unique saviour of humanity" and that this would diminish Jesus' status as "the Creator of the universe with absolute authority over that creation and everyone in it" which would rob "the Church he founded (of) possessing the rightful claim to authority over the spiritual life and affairs of the entire human race?"
Would the Church not eliminate those fears by proclaiming to the world, while recognizing her uniqueness in many ways. Our theology, and practice is not necessarily a better way, our is simply one of the ways to a union with God.
Rocky Mountain House
Article was erroneous
Re: "Diocese's bid rejected in abuse case" (WCR, Jan. 31).
This article has no basis in fact. The Archdiocese of Grouard-McLennan did not file an application to be excluded as a defendant in native residential school suits.
What did occur in fact was that we filed an application relating to attempted substitutional service of statements of claim on the Archdiocese of Grouard-McLennan as the representative of a fifth defendant described as "the Roman Catholic Church."
It was the position of the archdiocese as outlined in the affidavit before the court that there is no such suable entity. We further submitted that even if the Roman Catholic Church was a suable entity, the administrator of the Archdiocese of Grouard-McLennan is not an authorized representative of the "Roman Catholic Church."
Justice Rosemary Nation dismissed our application to have the Roman Catholic Church excluded from the suit and directed that the fifth defendant's name be amended to read "the archbishop of the Catholic Archdiocese of Grouard-McLennan as the representative of the Roman Catholic Church."
She also ruled that due to the position of the archbishop being vacant, that service upon the Rev. Arth‚ Guimond, as the current administrator of the archdiocese, shall be deemed good and sufficient service upon the Church.
We have directed our legal advisor to appeal Justice Nation's ruling.
Archdiocese of Grouard-McLennan
Nanny's expulsion from Canada is absurd
A Filipino nanny kicked out of the country because she worked too hard (WCR, Feb. 21). What an absurdity!
Canadians like to brag, and often with good reason, about our willingness to help Third World people. Along comes Leticia Cables, her only crime she worked at two low-paying jobs.
With the exception of David Kilgour, no one in the federal government, especially Immigration Minister Elinor Caplan, gives a hoot. "Go back home and try again," is the response of an uncaring government.
We should be grateful for people like Bishop Emmett Doyle and Father Emmett Crough of St. Anthony's Catholic Parish for their support and providing a sanctuary for this besieged woman.
Change the stupid regulation that prevents newcomers from paying their way and building a better life.
Canada should welcome Leticia Cables, if she chooses to return. She has suffered enough.
Time for perpetual adoration
It is time for perpetual adoration here.
EWTN-TV quoted Pope John Paul as saying San Antonio is the most Catholic city in the U.S. The priests there invited the people to come and worship once a week. Now there are many perpetual adoration chapels and since this started, vocations have arisen significantly.
People are expressing a spiritual transformation.
St. Louis, Mo., has 27 adoration chapels and this trend is spreading like wildfire throughout the U.S.
If our lives do not centre around the Eucharist, we are off balance.
It is time to start perpetual adoration in our parishes. It has been shown that parishes with adoration have never been broken into.
Show more respect while in God's house
In the Jan. 24, Alberta Edition Report, is an article titled: "The eyes have it." This article is about the traditionalists and Latin.
It also mentions that "the pope has decided that the Church could stand a little more conservative ballast in the barque of St. Peter."
Under the photo in said article, it asks whether the Tridentine Mass will pull the disaffected Catholics back to the Church. At the end of this article, Anglican Bishop Robert Crawley states: "The primary purpose of worship is to become one with God."
This brings me to a concern I have. Is it not God's presence that makes our churches holy? Why has the Blessed Sacrament been moved out of so many churches to a small chapel? Why do we not focus on him? It seems to me that we focus more on liturgy and on socializing in the Church.
Children don't bother me, and I do realize that we have lots of converts in our churches that do a lot of work. But in some churches it is like going to a movie or a play. Visit, visit and more visiting. No attention is paid to Our Lord in the tabernacle.
Some large and small churches are quiet at all times. Some churches have turned to signs on the doors that say "Silence" so this socializing and talking is going on in several churches.
Have we lost the sense of awe for our God? It is not God himself that makes the Church today? Are we still trying to take Jesus off the cross by focusing mainly on his becoming man? Did Jesus not say: "When I am raised up, I shall draw men unto me."
Is it too much to ask that we show respect in God's house and in his presence?