Last Updated:Friday - 09/24/2010
May 24, 2004
WCR Letters to the Editor
Water comments purified
I feel it necessary to point out that Dr. Chukwuemeka Obiajunwa's letter(WCR, May 3) contains many inaccuracies about Development and Peace and demeans the efforts of a) his fellow Africans who, together with representatives from Asia, Latin America and the Caribbean, determine the nature of the campaigns that D & P undertakes, b) the CCCB who established the organization as one way of inviting Canadian Catholics to put the Gospel message of justice into practice and c) the many thousands of members and volunteers across Canada who devote their time and energy to bring to Canadians, Canadian Catholics in particular, information about the root causes of injustice that continues to occur around the world.
Dr. Obiajunwa obviously did not see that Charles Abugre and Rudolf Amenga-Etego, representatives from an African NGO in Ghana, have stated that privatization has resulted in people losing access to clean water.
Nor did he see the reference to the International Labour Resource and Information Group and the Africa Information Development Centre, both in South Africa, who are working on the issue of privatization of water supplies.
Nor the references to other groups throughout the global South who are also educating the public and lobbying governments to retain public control of water supplies. It is groups like these that provide the information and quotes contained in the D & P material.
This is in fulfillment of the philosophy that D & P has followed for 37 years of promoting the rights of people everywhere to control their economic, social and cultural environments.
Finally, it must be noted that D & P has been and remains firmly rooted in the Gospel message of justice, in bringing to life the social teachings of the Church and in promoting solidarity between groups and peoples; this solidarity manifests itself in partnerships.
Development and Peace
Priest 'taken aback' by colleague's words
In regard to your piece on Father Duncan MacDonnell(WCR, March 15), I want to say that I was privileged to know this distinguished priest for many years. He was always an inspiration.
However, I was taken aback somewhat that Father saw fit to pronounce himself in three areas of theological discourse that stand in direct contradiction to the teachings of the holy father. This is truly unfortunate, especially at this time when the Church is hurting and struggling so much and solidarity with the holy father is needed as never before.
Due to limits of time and space I can only hope to take up one of the items in dispute - a document supporting the ordination of women to the priesthood. It is with good reason that Pope John Paul teaches that the Church is not free under God to ordain women.
Some years ago, a group of scholars produced a document supporting the ordination of women to the priesthood. They stated that there was not a word in all of Scripture that stood in the way of such a step.
However, the understanding of the Scriptures is not just a function of intellectual acuity but of openness to the Holy Spirit that comes through a life of singular holiness. The scholars amazingly imputed no value to the many occasions in Scripture where Jesus is presented as the bridegroom (Matthew 9:15) or as the one "who has the bride" (John 3:29). (see Revelation 19:7-9)
Scripture clearly and frequently attests that Jesus is the bridegroom. This brings to fulfillment the ancient Jewish understanding that Israel is wife to God, that before God we are all feminine. The bridal image of God and his people, of bridegroom and bride, permeates all of Scripture and the implications of this for the liturgical life of the Church cannot be denied.
At every Mass, at every Sunday Eucharist it is Christ the bridegroom who is present. It is Christ alone who, acting through the priest, changes our gifts of bread and wine into this most pure body and blood. This is the table, the banquet he sets for his bride. But this is possible only because he first of all died for the one he loves, his Church, in Scripture always feminine, always his bride (Ephesians 5:25-27).
Our Lord as masculine, our Church as feminine, this is an ordering that comes from God. To mandate women to stand for Christ before the assembled Church which is his bride would be to destroy the polarity needed to symbolize the marriage covenant between Christ and the Church.
The philosophical position that it doesn't matter whether the priest is male or female is a direct application of our culture's push to suppress the meaning of sexual differentiation.
No, the Church is not at liberty to ordain women as priests or to collude with today's culture in its sinister pursuit of the homogenization of human sexuality. To do so would amount to the practical renunciation of God's word in one of its most significant manifestations: Christ as bridegroom, his people as bride.
Fr. Tom Morley
Northside East Bay, N.S
Anglican pleas for Catholic prayer
Mel Gibson's The Passion of The Christ has had the effect of focusing Christians on the enormity of the sacrifice and suffering of Christ on the cross. The Saturday before I actually made my pilgrimage to the local cinema, already sensitized by a plethora of thought provoking articles, the words of Paul in a daily office reading jumped out at me: "I am helping to complete what still remains of Christ's suffering on behalf of his body, the Church" (Colossians 1: 24).
Naively, I had never before realized that the agony of Christ on the Cross did not cease with his death and resurrection, it has continued to this day with our every failure, negligence, disobedience, act of heresy or schism - one could go on forever - that we personally and collectively inflict on the Body of Christ, the Church.
I am an Anglican. The Anglican communion in Canada is engaged in a crisis over the blessing of same sex unions. One diocese, New Westminster in B.C., has already commenced them in direct contravention of the policy guidelines of the Canadian House of Bishops and the unequivocal rejection of them at the 1998 Lambeth Conference.
The general synod of the Anglican Church of Canada will meet from 28 May to 6 June in St. Catherines, Ont. A key item being considered is to allow individual dioceses to authorize the blessing of same sex couples. The proponents of such a move argue of course that our 3,000-year Judeo-Christian understanding of God's calling for us in sexual erotic behaviour - that we have but two options, chastity or heterosexual marriage - is in error.
If, however - as most Christians believe - these modernists are wrong, could there be a more grievous wound that could be inflicted on that precious body? We Anglicans would be essentially taking an action that - if the received tradition on sexual mores is true - turns its back on the redemptive power of his Gospel and instead opens the door for sinful activity?
Any wound inflicted on the Church - the body of Christ - harms the Church no matter who inflicts it. I therefore implore all Roman Catholics, indeed all Christians, to join their prayers to those of orthodox Anglicans that the general synod meeting 28 May to 6 June will pull back from the brink and defeat this proposal. And do, in true Christian love, express your concerns on this matter to your Anglican friends and acquaintances.
Anglican Church of the Good Shepherd
Eclipse of reason depicts abortion reality
May 14 is the 35th anniversary of abortion on demand in our country.
Abortions are increasing in Alberta, and we have to pay for it with our so-called health care money.
One can opt out of the health care system by June for one year. It's one way to protect this unfair use of our money that should be used to cure and help one to better health, and not to destroy human life.
See the video Eclipse of Reason that shows graphically what is done to our innocent unborn to kill him or her.
This video is available at the pro-life offices.
Also, I offer a free 54-day rosary novena booklet to pray for our leaders - as it's only by enough prayer and action, that there will be a change of heart, and thereby protection for our unborn children.
Please atone on May 14 (or when you read this article), by your extra prayers of atonement to God, and for those involved.
I am also offering a free pro-life leaflet, which has a pro-life intention for every decade of the rosary.
May we all work to defend life from conception to natural death, and see, God willing, one day, our efforts bear the fruit of which we earnestly pray and work for.
The Jesus, Mary and St. Anne Abortion Atonement Society
4607-14 Ave. S.E.
Calgary T2A 7H2
Iraqi war shows penalty of disbelief
The disgusting treatment and torture of Iraqi prisoners at Abu Ghraib prison cannot be blamed only on the people shown in the photographs. The problem goes much further.
The war on Iraq was immoral together with the treatment of prisoners at Guantanamo Bay and sending suspects to other countries like Syria for interrogation and torture.
The Red Cross told the American authorities last year there was a problem in the detention centres which was a broad pattern, not individual acts.
Problems cannot be solved by disregarding basic human rights and resorting to similar tactics used by the terrorists. When people veer from God's teachings disastrous consequences are bound to follow.