Deborah Gyapong: January 2011

Monday, January 31, 2011

We can now register for the Anglicanorum coetibus conference

The information has been posted at the Archdiocese of Toronto Website.

The registration form is here.

Here's what it says on the page devoted to the program of the gathering.

Thank you for your interest in the upcoming Anglicanorum Coetibus conference in the Archdiocese of Toronto. A program committee is working to finalize details for our March 24-26 conference. Our plan is to provide more complete information in this space by February 11, 2011.

In the interim, we recognize that many are looking to make travel plans and wish to have details around timing especially the beginning/ending of the conference to make arrangements as appropriate.

Our tentative program includes the following:

Thursday, March 24, 2011 – Our opening session will take place in the early evening, likely 7:00 p.m. at which time we will welcome all delegates, join together in prayer and have our first session together. Following the opening session, all delegates will be invited to participate in a wine/cheese reception as we build fellowship on our first evening together.

Friday, March 25, 2011- A full day is planned beginning with breakfast at 8 a.m. The day will include prayer, numerous presentations and the opportunity to engage in dialogue. Our tentative schedule concludes with dinner, providing a free evening for delegates to enjoy.

Saturday, March 26, 2011 – We will continue with prayer & sessions on Saturday morning, concluding with lunch at which time delegates will return home, armed with the wisdom and knowledge gained through our time together.

Keynote speakers include:

  • Fr. Christopher Phillips, Pastor, Our Lady of the Atonement Catholic Church in San Antonio, Texas. He is the founding pastor of the first Anglican Use parish, erected in 1983 under the terms of the Pastoral Provision.
  • Archbishop Thomas Collins, Archbishop of Toronto, Delegate, Anglicanorum Coetibus in Canada (as appointed by the Vatican’s Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith).

Cardinal Pell in a debate with an atheist

I have been a fan of Cardinal Pell's for decades, but mostly through writings that I came across first of all in First Things Magazine back in the 1990s, and more recently on the 'net.

But here I see what he's like on video for the first time in this most interesting debate at Macquarrie University in Sydney, Australia.

Most interesting article by George Weigel on the end of the Cardinal Bernadin era

At First Things Magazine, Weigel writes, my bolds:

John Paul II embodied a heroic model of the priesthood, and a heroic exercise of the office of bishop, that had a profound effect, over two-and-a-half decades, on the Catholic priesthood and episcopate in the United States. The men who elected Timothy Dolan as USCCB president in November 2010 were men deeply influenced by the John Paul II model, as they were men intellectually formed by the Polish pope’s dynamic magisterium on questions ranging from the Catholic sexual ethic to Catholic social doctrine. They understood, in a way that those who embodied the Bernardin Era did not quite seem to grasp, that it was important for the Catholic Church to be able to give a comprehensive, coherent, and compelling account of its faith, hope, and love in the Cathechism of the Catholic Church, just as they understood that the reaffirmation of classic Catholic moral theology in Veritatis Splendor was an important weapon in the war against what John Paul II’s successor called the “dictatorship of relativism.”

And they were prepared to challenge the culture—and American politics—to re-discover the public-policy implications of America’s founding commitment to self-evident moral truths; they were not interested, in other words, in finding an agreeable fifty-yard line. They had learned from John Paul II and the Revolution of 1989 in east central Europe that seemingly invincible forces could be defeated, and they were determined to defeat, not find an accommodation with, the cultural forces that, in their judgment, were at war with the gospel even as they were eroding the fabric of American life.

There was paradox here. Joseph Bernardin, growing up in that part of America where Catholics were most suspect, defined a style of engagement with American public life that put great stress on remaining “in play.” The bishops who ultimately brought an end to the Bernardin Machine and the Bernardin Era grew up comfortably Catholic and comfortably American—and then came to understand that their Catholicism could require them to be forthrightly countercultural in dealing with American culture and politics. The paradox underscored that a sea change had taken place, the effects of which were likely to be felt for generations.

The ecclesiastical sensibility that characterized the Bernardin Era can still be discerned in several parts of the complex reality that is the Catholic Church in the United States. That sensibility is perhaps most palpably felt in Boston, where Father Hehir has wielded considerable influence over archdiocesan affairs in recent years and has done so according to the Bernardin model. The Bernardin ethos is also felt within the bishops’ conference bureaucracy, as it is within diocesan bureaucracies. But if the Bernardin Era is indeed over, one should expect to see some continuing shifts of default position, not least within the bishops’ conference.

The conference might, for example, reexamine its habit of having a comment on virtually every contested issue in American public life. The late Fr. Richard John Neuhaus used to say that, when the Church is not obliged to speak, the Church is obliged not to speak; that is, when the issue at hand does not touch a fundamental moral truth that the Church is obliged to articulate vigorously in the public-policy debate, the Church’s pastors ought to leave the prudential application of principle to the laity who, according to Vatican II, are the principal evangelizers of culture, politics, and the economy. The USCCB’s habit of trying to articulate a Catholic response to a very broad range of public-policy issues undercuts this responsibility of the laity; it also tends to flatten out the bishops’ witness so that all issues become equal, which they manifestly are not.
Most interesting. Great magazine, First Things.

Saturday, January 29, 2011

Michael Coren and Michael Voris?

What could be more entertaining and interesting?

I will be tuning in.

Thursday Feb 3
State of Catholicism:
An hour with Michael Voris

H/t The Socon

Some great John Zmirak

As I have said before, this man can write! Here is an excerpt of his take on the movie about The Rite. (H/t The Anchoress).

But it bothers me that so many of the movies promoted this way are not really "spiritual," much less Christian; they're simply bland and inoffensive.

The Catholic faith is neither. In fact, like really authentic Mexican food (think habeneros and fried crickets), it is at once both pungent and offensive. It offends me all the time, with the outrageous demands it makes of my fallen nature and the sheer weirdness of its claims. It asserts that, behind the veil of day-to-day schlepping, of work and laundry and television and microwaved burritos, we live on the front lines of a savage spiritual war waged by invisible entities (deathless malevolent demons and benevolent dead saints) whose winners will enjoy eternal happiness with a resurrected rabbi, and whose losers will writhe forever in unquenchable fire. Sometimes I step back and find myself saying in Jerry Seinfeld's voice: What's with all the craziness? Why can't I just enjoy my soup?

The Church's heroes, seen from a worldly point of view, are a pack of self-destructive zealots who embark on crackpot projects like lifelong celibacy, voluntary poverty, and (worst of all) obedience; who leave perfectly serviceable chateaus in France to go preach the Beatitudes to scalp-collecting Indians in freezing Canada; who volunteer to sneak into Stalin's Russia precisely because he has imprisoned so many priests, then spend decades saying secret Masses in labor camps; who open up pro-life pregnancy centers in crappy neighborhoods so they can talk welfare queens into having still more babies we'll have to pay for . . .

And so on. A religion like this doesn't need after-school specials; it needs science fiction and fantasy, horror films and surrealism to convey the fundamental strangeness that it believes lies just beneath the surface of day-to-day "reality." To keep our sense of perspective, every once in a while at one of our dull, desacralized liturgies, the priest needs to die of a heart attack in the pulpit (as happened at my old New York parish, St. Agnes, some years ago), if only to remind us of the stakes we're playing for. We need -- though let me stress, we don't enjoy, and I do not want -- the occasional "Flannery O'Connor moment."

and this, which is amazingly insightful:

The best depiction I've seen of how occultism kills the soul, Robert Hugh Benson's novel The Necromancers, details what happens next: a slow, sick burn seeps into your brain. The colors of nature (which you've raped) all fade to a sickly, jaundiced yellow. Having glimpsed the dark underbelly of things, you become utterly cynical. Ordinary knowledge, earned through hard labor, loses all attraction compared to secrets, conspiracies, and gossip. You begin to see other people with that hideous spiritual hunger that demons feel all the time, as if they were healthy animals and you were a parasite, looking for somewhere to batten on them and drain their strength. Soon the glamour of evil fades, and once it's too late (by any human power) for you to escape, you feel deep in your bones the crassness, the foulness, the cheapness of what you have become.
Please read the whole thing over at

Interesting post about married priesthood

From Leon J. Podles site:

According to the Suddeutsche Zeitung, in 1970 several theologians wrote to the German Bishops asking that the requirement that all priests in the Latin Church to be celibate be discussed. Among the theologians were Karl Rahner, Walter Kasper, Karl Lehman – and Joseph Ratzinger, currently Pope Benedict XVI. This letter was quietly and discretely filed away and was recently leaked to a reform group in Regensburg.

They wrote that they did not desire to prejudice the decision of the Church, but that they thought that the long-standing tradition of clerical celibacy should be reconsidered in the light of modern historical and social conditions “neuen geschichtlichen und gesellschaftlichen Situationen,” such as the ever-increasing lack of priests, “dieses akuter werdenden Priestermangels.” They also pointed to the Eastern Catholic churches, which ordain married men.

In particular, they wondered whether such a requirement of celibacy was prudent in the overheated sexual atmosphere of the modern world. They questioned the formation of priests. If a candidate said he had no problem with celibacy, did he really know his own desires? They also thought it important to consider “the psychological instability of many young men in today’s sexually overwrought society,” “die psychische Labilität vieler junger Menschen in der heutigen sexuell überreizten Gesellschaft.”

I comment over at The English Catholic:

There is something wonderful about a fruitful celibate ministry when it is an obviously heterosexual man who loves women and children, who could have made a wonderful husband, father and grandfather, gives up the *goods* of marriage for the sake of the Church. It's not so wonderful if a man is giving up what he is not interested in or does not perceive as good.

That said, the wife of a married priest is not merely some sort of lust-catcher or receptacle for a man who can't otherwise control himself. I reject that view.

As I wrote in the comments section over there, a Ukrainian Catholic priest told me when he has confronted this attitude towards the married priesthood, "Does it ever occur to them that my wife helps me be a better priest?" Anyone who is married knows how one's spouse is probably one of the best agents for the correction of selfishness and other bad habits.

It is not easy being married and being chaste within marriage. Contrary to the ideas of those who are single, it is not a big free for all or an antidote for lust.

While I think we need to appreciate more the gift of celibacy and understand that it is not a "gift of asexuality" but something that requires constant prayer and vigilance and discipline to rise above, I believe the charism of a family at the heart of the parish needs to be better appreciated by the whole Church.

A good article to whet your appetite on the real agenda of the left

Dreier’s defense of Piven is completely at odds with the upshot of her writings, which lovingly chronicle efforts by community organizers to intensify riots and violent protests. I explain Piven’s strategy on NRO’s homepage today in “Frances Fox Piven’s Violent Agenda.” Dreier’s efforts to turn Piven into a latter-day incarnation of Martin Luther King are absurd. Piven looks forward to rioting and urges community organizers not to waste time channeling violent protests into conventional politics but to escalate disruptions for maximum leverage. Dreier’s defense of Piven’s latest controversial editorial in The Nation leaves out the crucial passage where she calls for Euro-style protest riots in the United States.

The hope of silencing Beck in the wake of Tucson has lured the Left into a strategic blunder. They’ve decided to turn Piven into a martyr. Yet in doing so the Left has tied itself to Piven’s wild writings and over-the-top radicalism. Dreier acts as though Piven’s scholarly work is somehow different from the calls for rioting, crisis, and polarization in her two notorious Nation articles. Actually, Piven’s scholarly writings are worse.

Friday, January 28, 2011

A change in direction

From Sub Tuum:

Our worship at Spring Bank was always reverent and remains simple and identifiably Cistercian, contested and vague though that term may be, but these two photos, one from the Canon of the Mass on St. Bernard's Day 2008 and one from the Canon of the Mass at this morning's Conventual Mass for the Feast of the Founders, brought home that we have been fairly busy over the past two-and-a-half years:

St. Bernard's Day, August 2008.

The Feast of the Founders, January 2011.

On January 1, 2009, we moved to ad orientem celebration of all Masses. Last month, we finished the first phase of renovations to our oratory. In between there have been many less dramatic steps, from more frequent choir rehearsals to returning to more traditional vestments to numerous tiny clean-ups to the customary. We are a small house and are far from being a model of the liturgical renewal, but I think what we have done is a testament to the fact that no matter the circumstances in which you find yourself, there are always concrete ways to move forward.

Thursday, January 27, 2011

Good stuff over at Free Canuckistan

Binks has the usual great links, plus several on Egypt, including this:

God’s Mercy Unto Egypt?

~ ITEM: Egypt: Egypt’s 1960′s Remarkable Virgin Mary Sightings, Egypt

~ ITEM: The Apparitions Of The Blessed Holy Virgin Mary To Millions In The Coptic Orthodox Church Named After Her, In Zeitoun, Cairo, Egypt (1968-1970)

~ ITEM: Muslim Brotherhood foments uprising in Egypt

Virgin Mary Zeitun Photographs

~ ITEM: The jihad against Egypt’s Copts

Yikes! Barbara Hall wants to indoctrinate our kids!


TORONTO, Ontario, January 27, 2011 ( - The controversial Ontario Human Rights Commission has signaled their “takeover” of the province’s education sector, a development that could threaten private schools and homeschoolers, said the Family Coalition Party of Ontario (FCP) today.

“If the OHRC is given control over the thoughts of our children, the next target will be private schools and parents who home school,” argued Phil Lees, the leader of the FCP. “The OHRC will quickly move to require private schools and parents who home school to teach their children curriculum that contradicts the values they work to instil in their kids at home.”

The FCP’s concerns are based upon the OHRC’s role as a dominant player at a major Ontario Ministry of Education conference on equity and inclusive education this week. Every school board in the province, Catholic and public, sent a delegation including a trustee, principal, parent, student trustee, and administrator.

The conference, entitled “Deepening the Understanding…Widening the Response: Equity and Inclusive Education Part II,” was held on January 26-27 at the Sheraton Hotel in Toronto, and was designed to promote the implementation of the government’s mandatory equity and inclusive education strategy.

The conference program notes that the OHRC “is working with school boards” on the strategy and will “offer details about the work the OHRC is doing to create a policy on human rights in our schools.” Barbara Hall, the OHRC’s chief commissioner, gave an opening address and OHRC members delivered two workshops, one on “human rights and student discipline” and another on “competing human rights claims.”

I used to love this song

What a treat to find a live version of Phoebe Snow singing it. I played her album over and over and over and over back in the 1970s.

Lean on me and Just the two of us

Bill Withers' phrasing is just terrific.

Trust me---by Crystal Lewis

Love this song.

Some excellent VDH on how things have changed

Here's one interesting excerpt from, as usual, a most insightful piece by Victor Davis Hanson:

Race relations are being redefined as never before. Interracial marriage, integration, and immigration have made the old rubrics — “white,” “black,” “brown” — obsolete. Rigid, half-century-old affirmative-action programs have not caught up with everyday reality. Their overseers are likewise ossified, now that millions in an interracial America do not fit into their precise racial slots, and being white — to the degree that it can be easily defined — is not synonymous with innate privilege. The notion that Tiger Woods’s children need an admissions or employment edge over natives of Appalachia or immigrants from India is surreal.

Abroad, things are just as upside down. Russia is no longer the avatar of global Communism but the world’s largest cutthroat oil producer. China’s cultural revolution is now about making tons of money and driving luxury cars. The European Union has been reduced to pointing fingers and standing in line to beg Germany for cash — a far cry from its advertised 21st-century utopian brotherhood. Our old neighbor Mexico is now a near-failed narco-state, bearing a greater resemblance to Afghanistan than to its brother nations in North America.

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Bishop Elliott on the Ordinariate in Australia

An excerpt of a Zenit interview:

First there is the challenge of geography — Australia is the same size as mainland United States.

We have to bring together groups that are scattered, even isolated. As episcopal delegate for the bishops’ conference, my frequent flyer points are rising fast!

Then, two somewhat diverse groups have to come together: Some Anglican clergy and laity in the official Anglican Church of Australia (ACA) and most members of the Anglican Catholic Church in Australia (Traditional Anglican Communion: TAC). Both groups share an Anglo-Catholic heritage, but their history is different.

One of the fruits of the ordinariate will be their coming together in one community.

ZENIT: How will the community of former Anglicans in Japan be included into this ordinariate?

Bishop Elliott: This possibility is only in its earliest stages, so I cannot provide more details.

ZENIT: What has the general environment been like among those who seek to be part of the ordinariate?

Bishop Elliott: There is a sense of enthusiasm and anticipation among these Australian Anglicans.

Over the past 20 years they have suffered for their Catholic principles, confronted and torn apart by serious doctrinal and moral issues.

In this country, no pastoral provision was made for these good people in the official Church. They had to accept the new order or fend for themselves. They are still unfairly labeled as “disaffected Anglicans.”

At the same time, those who set up independent Anglican dioceses and parishes (TAC) suffered rejection and ridicule, and they have made great sacrifices to follow their consciences.

In both circles, they are coming to see that the Holy Father’s generous offer means peace and unity. They are diligently studying the Catechism of the Catholic Church — a good example to us all.

Thank you, Holy Father for Anglicanorum coetibus

From the National March for Life via the Anglo-Catholic blog.

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Obama and Kermit Gosnell

From National Review Online:

Gosnell’s Philadelphia clinic’s lack of hygiene is not the detail that has captured the most attention, or inspired the most outrage. It turns out that Gosnell frequently, perhaps hundreds of times, fully delivered intact fetuses and then used scissors on the newborn. In his words, he engaged in “snipping” to “ensure fetal demise.” In many cases, the fetuses were in the third trimester.

This procedure, sometimes called a “live-birth abortion,” is illegal. But not thanks to President Obama. As a state legislator in Illinois, he argued that the law should offer no protection to neonates if they had been delivered before viability. He said that protecting them would violate Roe v. Wade and undermine the right to abortion. What looked like infanticide to most people was for him, it must be inferred, a “private family matter.” When Gosnell applied his scissors to pre-viable children, he was, on Obama’s terms, merely exercising a cherished freedom.

Credit Obama with a real insight: The physical location of a human being conceived five months ago may mark the difference between whether he is considered a “fetus” or an “infant,” but it cannot mark a moral difference. Nor can it make a moral difference whether this being is partly inside the womb.

Mark Steyn on the Lars Hedegaard trial

The last time I used the headline “Lars Man Standing” was for a National Review post about Lars Hedegaard’s analysis of Europe’s Islamo-leftist alliance. Mr Hedegaard was my host in Copenhagen back in September, when the Danish Free Press Society presented me with its Sappho Award. Yesterday, I returned from a few weeks off the Internet-beaten track to find that he is yet again the Lars man standing – standing in the dock in Fredericksburg, charged with offending Islam. His is merely the latest in a long line of the western world’s new heresy trials - Elisabeth Sabaditsch-Wolff in Austria, Geert Wilders and Gregorius Nekschot in the Netherlands, Michel Houllebecq in France, Michael Smith in Australia, Ezra Levant and me in Canada.

As in Canada, as in the Netherlands, so in Denmark the defendants in such cases are informed that the truth is no defense. As Lars said in court yesterday:

My counsel has instructed me that in cases brought under Article 266b, the only thing that determines whether one is convicted or not is a matter of the perceived insult whereas one is barred from proving the truth of the statement.

The article deals with public statements whereby a group of people are "threatened, insulted or degraded". But as my lawyer has already noted, I have made no public statement.

The Danish Member of Parliament Jesper Langballe commented on the Hedegaard case and was himself charged with “racism”. While preparing his defense, he was also told by the court that “defendants in cases brought under Article 266b are denied the right to prove their case”.


That’s why these are heresy trials, and only the first of many. The prosecutors think Hedegaard, Langballe, Wilders, Mrs Sabbaditsch-Wolff et al are apostates from the new state religion of multiculturalism. Thuggish Muslim lobby groups, on the other hand, consider them heretics against Islam. In practice, it makes little difference, and multiculturalism is merely an interim phase, a once useful cover for an Islamic imperialism so confident it now barely needs one. The good news is that European prosecutors are doing such a grand job with their pilot program of show trials you’ll hardly notice the difference when sharia is formally instituted.


And in the final indignity they'd wound up sharing a stage with me because their leftie pals weren't there for them. All your liberal friends who went to the Amnesty and PEN fundraisers and bored the pants off you with that bit of apocryphal Voltaire - “I disapprove of what you say but I will defend to the death your right to say it” - stayed utterly silent. As Molly Norris discovered in Seattle. C’mon, nobody’s asking you to defend anyone to the death. A mildly principled fax would do.

That is why the Lars Hedegaard trial matters. The zombie husks who lead the western world in twilight pass off their groveling prostration as a defense of “multicultural tolerance”. It's not. It’s the Pansy Left (in Orwell’s phrase) auditioning to be Islam’s lead prison bitch (that’s mine, not Orwell’s). In the same way that the left embarked on its long march through the institutions, so too has Islam. Its Gramscian subversion of transnational bodies, international finance, human rights institutions, the academy and the justice system is well advanced.

Sez who?

Unlike men, women relax by doing things, so they need storage and a place to work, Griffin said.

Oh yeah? Well, I guess I would have to have a computer in my "cave" so I could blog. Hey. I have a computer. I'm blogging. Am I relaxing?

I don't knit. I don't sew. Sewing on a button is something that engenders years of procrastination. I don't do crafts, except once a year I make centre pieces for Christmas out of evergreens.

Pretty silly article, and sad that so many women have no genuine spiritual lives and have to make one up as they go along.

H/t FFofF

Stanley Kurtz at National Review on silencing strategy

The campaign to use the tragic shootings in Tucson to silence conservatives continues. The latest twist is an attempt to highlight anonymous threats against leftist scholar and strategist Frances Fox Piven as a way of forcing Glenn Beck, a critic of Piven, off the air, or at least prohibiting him from mentioning her on his Fox News television show. This affects me as well, since an excerpt from my recent appearance on Beck’s show to discuss Piven has been aired in the course of the controversy. My new book, Radical-in-Chief, extensively treats Piven’s influence on contemporary leftist strategy, and on Barack Obama’s political development. If Beck is forced to stop talking about Piven, efforts will surely be made to silence me and other conservative critics of Piven.It is extraordinary that conservatives should be charged with stirring up violence at a moment when Piven, in an editorial in The Nation, has called for an American movement of “strikes and riots” on the model of the one recently seen in Greece. The anonymous threats against Piven are reprehensible. I condemn them in the strongest terms. Yet it is not conservatives but Piven and The Nation who advocate violence. Neither Piven nor The Nation should be forcibly silenced, but they certainly ought to be criticized. Instead, The Nation is leading the effort to silence those who have rightly condemned Piven’s call for rioting in America
Read the whole thing. And please pray that Obama is a one-term president. Don't be fooled by his tack to the centre.

A little more of Kurtz' post:

In her December 2010 Nation column, Piven wrote: “Local protests have to accumulate and spread — and become more disruptive — to create pressures on national politicians. An effective movement of the unemployed will have to look something like the strikes and riots that have spread across Greece. . . .”

Never let a crisis go to waste, eh?

MSM propaganda--the role of suppression

Jack Cashill writes:

Successful propaganda is composed of equal parts deception and suppression, and the apparatchiks in the mainstream media are much better at the latter.

Then he tells of an interesting story you never heard of.

And where is the coverage of the National March for Life that took place in Washington, D.C. yesterday?

The Holy Father's advice on new media

Is there is a risk of being more distracted because our attention is fragmented and absorbed in a world "other" than the one in which we live? Do we have time to reflect critically on our choices and to foster human relationships which are truly deep and lasting? It is important always to remember that virtual contact cannot and must not take the place of direct human contact with people at every level of our lives.

In the digital age too, everyone is confronted by the need for authenticity and reflection. Besides, the dynamic inherent in the social networks demonstrates that a person is always involved in what he or she communicates. When people exchange information, they are already sharing themselves, their view of the world, their hopes, their ideals. It follows that there exists a Christian way of being present in the digital world: this takes the form of a communication which is honest and open, responsible and respectful of others. To proclaim the Gospel through the new media means not only to insert expressly religious content into different media platforms, but also to witness consistently, in one’s own digital profile and in the way one communicates choices, preferences and judgements that are fully consistent with the Gospel, even when it is not spoken of specifically. Furthermore, it is also true in the digital world that a message cannot be proclaimed without a consistent witness on the part of the one who proclaims it. In these new circumstances and with these new forms of expression, Christian are once again called to offer a response to anyone who asks for a reason for the hope that is within them (cf. 1 Pet 3:15).

Monday, January 24, 2011

Baby Mae's first haircut

Why all of us are called to be saints

By nature his temperament was choleric, fiery; little was needed to throw him into a state of violent anger.

Go on over and read about the amazing saint who started out with such a bad temper!

It reminds me of an email conversation I had with someone about a mutual friend of ours who exhibits qualities that I think will make him some day be declared a saint.

I told her that I sometimes think to myself, I am no great example like this person when I find myself being uncharitable.

"but then I'll think to myself, [he] did not drop down from the sky with this kind of love, it is a love he has stormed heaven for through prayer, through discipline, and many hours of tears at experiencing his own spiritual poverty and hungering and thirsting after righteousness and the experience of coming to the end of himself, his human abilities, and trusting and waiting on God, who is faithful when we pour ourselves out and let Him in. Why do I give myself a pass on this, why should I not be as charitable as he is? He shows me that I have no excuses not to be as loving as he is."

Sunday, January 23, 2011

Yikes! too much body building

can result in this.

A fascinating interview with a young Swiss priest

who is with SSPX. Very interesting.

Unbelievable statement from DA in Philadelphia

Saturday, January 22, 2011

Mass murder in a Philadelphia abortuary

“This case is about a doctor who killed babies and endangered women. What we mean is that he regularly and illegally delivered live, viable, babies in the third trimester of pregnancy – and then murdered these newborns by severing their spinal cords with scissors. The medical practice by which he carried out this business was a filthy fraud in which he overdosed his patients with dangerous drugs, spread venereal disease among them with infected instruments, perforated their wombs and bowels – and, on at least two occasions, caused their deaths. Over the years, many people came to know that something was going on here. But no one put a stop to it.”

Friday, January 21, 2011

Someone told me he liked Crazy Love by Van Morrison

I won't tell you where this guy lives or you might be scandalized ;-). But he liked my posting of Have I told you lately that I love you and wrote me, mentioning a few other great Van Morrison songs.

Crazy love was one of them. But I couldn't find a Van Morrison version, but I found Aaron Neville's. I love Aaron Neville and this is sweet.

Then I found this duet of Aaron Neville with Linda Ronstadt from 1989. I like the way she does not try to sing like a black woman but is herself. Yet they blend beautifully.

Which reminds me of my favorite version of endless love by the wonderful late Luther Vandross and Mariah Carey. I love how they sing to each other like real lovers. Or Luther did anyway. Man oh man, could he put himself into a song. Always did covers better than the original singers.

I love the sheer joy of their singing together, the perfection, the virtuosity. Beautiful.

Here's another favorite Luther Vandross. He really works hard on stage.

Hey, here's my brother on You Tube!

And some of my old friends:

Iranium will be shown on Feb. 6

Got this today from my friend Fred Litwin:

Iranium will be shown in Ottawa on February 6th!

January 21, 2011
Dear Free Thinking Film Society Supporter:

I want to express my extreme disappointment that Iranium was not shown in Ottawa this week. We are committed to ensuring this film is shown in the capital of Canada - and that our cultural policies are not dictated by the Khomeinist thugs of Iran.

So, I am happy to announce that Iranium will now be shown on Sunday, February 6th at 7:00 PM at the Library and Archives Canada. Clare Lopez will also be flying in to talk at the event. Tickets are $15.00 (Students/Seniors - $8.00) and will be available, in advance, at the following locations:

Compact Music, 785 1/2 Bank Street

Compact Music, 190 Bank Street

Ottawa Folklore Centre, 1111 Bank Street

Ottawa Festivals, 47 William Street

Tickets will also be available at the door, but to ensure you get a seat, please buy your ticket in advance.

What really happened this week
On Monday, January 17th at 2 PM, I was informed by staff of the Library & Archives Canada (LAC) that they had received 'complaints' about Iranium and had decided to cancel the film. They offered to find an alternate venue.

I then phoned the office of the Minister of National Heritage (James Moore) to complain about the cancellation. I also sent an e-mail through the official website.

The LAC then offered to move the film to the Museum of Nature, but for a substantial fee. I really couldn't understand why the film could be shown in one building, but not the other. I told the LAC that if it had to be moved, they would have to pick up the costs.

After conferring with our Board of Directors, we decided that it was way too late to move the film, and that we should hold our ground and insist that the film be shown at the LAC. At 6:30 PM on Monday night, I received a call informing me that the film was now back on at the LAC.

On Tuesday morning, January 18th, I was informed that the complaints had indeed come from the Iranian Embassy! At 4 PM, I received a call from a senior manager at the LAC that there were protestors inside and outside the building; that they had called the RCMP; who had then informed them that security could not be assured; and that they had no choice but to cancel the film.

I immediately got into my car and drove to the Archives, arriving about 4:50 PM. The building had been closed and employees were leaving the building. Few people knew what was happening - and I didn't see any protesters anywhere. I was then informed that there were no protests - just the 'threat of protests.'

The police then arrived and the fire department arrived. I conducted a few interviews and left with Clare Lopez for my home. After we left, the hazardous materials team arrived - apparently because of two envelopes left at the front desk - but that occurred after the building had been closed down.

So, there you have it. We still need some answers! What event on Iranian culture was cancelled by the Archives in December of 2010 and why? Why did the Archives cancel so fast on Monday? Why would anybody care if the Iranian Embassy was unhappy? Were there actually threats on Tuesday? From whom? Was there just the 'threat of protest'? Why can't people protest a film? And, why couldn't the building be secured?

And, finally, why can the building now be secure on February 6th for the 'new' screening?

I applaud the Minister of National Heritage, James Moore, for his determination in standing up for freedom of speech - but it should never have had to go to his office.

The Khomeinist Thugs in Action

Check out this important article.

Police in Afghanistan are hunting for an attacker who sprayed acid in the face of journalist Razaq Mamoon as he walked home in Kabul on Tuesday.

Mr Mamoon is in hospital after the assault by a masked man, which was condemned by President Karzai.

The journalist - who has blamed the attack on Iran - said that he was only saved from critical injury because he was wearing glasses at the time.

The Iranian embassy in Kabul has not commented on Mr Mamoon's allegations.

Police, meanwhile, have given no indication in public that Iran is in any way responsible.

But speaking to the BBC from his hospital bed, Mr Mamoon said: ''Absolutely the Iranians are behind this attack because nobody dares to speak out in front of Iran."

He said that a new book he had written, The Footprint of Pharaoh, documented "Iranian sabotage and intelligence activities... of how they wanted to divide Afghanistan during the Taliban's rule".

''The publishers of my book were threatened a few days ago by officials of the Iranian embassy in Kabul," he said.

"They tried to ban the book. I had the feeling that they would do something. I don't think this will be the first and last. There might be other people too on their list.''

Mr Mamoon has accused Iran in the past of being involved involved in the killing of Northern Alliance commander Ahmad Shah Massoud in 2001.

I want to thank the hundreds of people who have called or e-mailed with their support for the Free Thinking Film Society and what we are doing. In particular, I have received many e-mails from Iranian-Canadians who thought they, and their families, had left the Khomeinist regime behind, and are outraged to see Khomeinist influence right here in the capital of Canada.

I want to thank the Board Members of the Free Thinking Film Society who have stepped up to the plate to help out the last three hectic days.

Iranium will now show on Sunday, February 6th at 7 PM at the Library & Archives Canada (395 Wellington). Admission is $15.00 ($8.00 for students/seniors). Clare Lopez will be speaking at the event. Reception to follow Q&A.


Frederick Litwin
Free Thinking Film Society

Thank you, Saint Francis Xavier

He's been my patron saint for 2011 for a while. Here's how we're doing!

Yes, I log in as Helenoftroy over there. My husband chose the name, not me.

Thank you Oswald Chambers

. . . for reminding me Who my first love is:

Thus says the Lord: ’I remember . . . the kindness of your youth . . .’ —Jeremiah 2:2

Am I as spontaneously kind to God as I used to be, or am I only expecting God to be kind to me? Does everything in my life fill His heart with gladness, or do I constantly complain because things don’t seem to be going my way? A person who has forgotten what God treasures will not be filled with joy. It is wonderful to remember that Jesus Christ has needs which we can meet— “Give Me a drink” (John 4:7). How much kindness have I shown Him in the past week? Has my life been a good reflection on His reputation?

God is saying to His people, “You are not in love with Me now, but I remember a time when you were.” He says, “I remember . . . the love of your betrothal . . .” (Jeremiah 2:2). Am I as filled to overflowing with love for Jesus Christ as I was in the beginning, when I went out of my way to prove my devotion to Him? Does He ever find me pondering the time when I cared only for Him? Is that where I am now, or have I chosen man’s wisdom over true love for Him? Am I so in love with Him that I take no thought for where He might lead me? Or am I watching to see how much respect I get as I measure how much service I should give Him?

As I recall what God remembers about me, I may also begin to realize that He is not what He used to be to me. When this happens, I should allow the shame and humiliation it creates in my life, because it will bring godly sorrow, and “godly sorrow produces repentance . . .” (2 Corinthians 7:10).

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

“How can Tehran dictate what movie is going to be shown in the capital of Canada?”

Threatening e-mails and phone calls resulted in the cancellation Tuesday evening of a film that exposes Iran’s efforts to build nuclear weapons and promote terrorism.

The threats followed a formal complaint last weekend from the Iranian Embassy, seeking to stop the showing of the film Iranium at Library and Archives Canada.

Late Tuesday afternoon, police cars and fire trucks surrounded the WellingtonStreet building after staff reported two suspicious letters had been dropped off by a man at about 4 p.m. The man hurried away before anyone could question him and the letters had no return address. An hour later, there was a series of phone calls threatening violent protests. By 6 p.m., long after most of the staff had left, there were no protesters and the letters were found to be harmless.

Nonetheless, the situation forced Fred Litwin, president of the Free Thinking Film Society, to accept the cancellation of the film’s showing. Litwin said he was told of the intended cancellation on Monday, and, when he later asked why, was told it was because of a complaint from the Iranian Embassy.


Litwin said he suspected that beyond the Iranian Embassy’s formal complaint, it was also behind the intimidation efforts. “It’s simply astounding that in the capital of Canada we can’t show a film that offends the Iranians,” he said. “How can Tehran dictate what movie is going to be shown in the capital of Canada?”


David Harris, director of Insignis Strategic Research, a private firm specializing in intelligence on terrorism, said the decision to cancel the film leaves the impression agencies of the Canadian government are susceptible to the influence — and threats — of foreign governments. Equally problematic, he said, is that bureaucrats in Library and Archives Canada seemingly gave no thought to maintaining Charter guarantees of freedom of assembly and speech.

“Does a call from the Iranians mean the collapse of free speech in Ottawa? What kind of surreal atmosphere exists in the bureaucracy? The whole situation leaves the impression of a knee-jerk bowing to the mullahs of Iran.”

Read more:

Calling all Anglicans!

Toronto Archbishop welcomes Anglicans

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Anglican Catholic Church of Canada Bishop Peter WilkinsonAnglican Catholic Church of Canada Bishop Peter WilkinsonArchbishop Collins invites Anglicans interested in Canadian Ordinariate to conference
By Deborah Gyapong
Canadian Catholic News

OTTAWA (CCN)—Anglican groups interested in a Canadian Ordinariate will be gathering in Mississauga March 24-26 at the invitation of Archbishop Thomas Collins

“To help move our dialogue and planning forward, I would like to extend an invitation to all those interested in Anglicanorum coetibus to join me for a conference dedicated to this topic,” the Toronto Archbishop said in an open letter posted Jan. 18 on the Toronto Archdiocese’s website.

“I look forward to meeting with clergy and laity from across the country this March to engage in prayer, fellowship and dialogue as we move forward with this important initiative,” said Collins, who the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith named as the episcopal delegate for Canada. It’s his job to liaise with the Anglican groups interested in an ordinariate, the CDF and the Canadian Conference of Catholic Bishops (CCCB).

Though the conference schedule is still in the planning stages, Archbishop Collins has invited Father Christopher Phillips, who founded the first Anglican Use parish in the United States in 1983 under Pope John Paul II’s Pastoral Provision.

Phillips, a married Catholic priest, started Our Lady of the Atonement Anglican Use Parish in San Antonio, Texas with a mere 18 fellow Anglicans, including five children, who wished to avail themselves of the provision. The Atonement parish has since grown to over 500 families and runs a school that has more than 500 students who attend Mass everyday according to an approved Anglican liturgy.

Phillips hosted the Becoming One conference in San Antonio last November that drew Anglicans from across the United States and Canada, bringing together those from the Anglican Use parishes, the Traditional Anglican Communion and The Episcopal Church and other Anglican groups.

“When Archbishop Collins contacted me and asked if I would be able to take part in this meeting, I was impressed with his sincere desire to provide an opportunity for all the Canadian Ordinariate-bound folks to get together,” said Phillips. “The Archbishop's dedication to the successful launch of the Ordinariate was very evident.”

“I'm looking forward to meeting him, and also to making lots of new friends in Canada,” he said on the Anglo-Catholic blog (

The event will take place at Queen of the Apostles Retreat Centre in Mississauga. Registration will open February 1. Details and registration information can be found at The web page also includes background information on the formation of an ordinariate in Canada, links to the Apostolic Constitution Anglicanorum coetibus, and a Q&A on the “practical aspects” of the erection of an ordinariate in Canada.


Tuesday, January 18, 2011

I showed up to see this movie and I'm not happy it was cancelled

OTTAWA – A suspicious package and a rash of phone calls threatening protests shut down the planned screening of an anti-Iran documentary at Library and Archives Canada Tuesday night.

Iran’s embassy in Ottawa had tried to censor the film, Iranium, by complaining to the national library, which cancelled it until Canadian Heritage Minister James Moore stepped in.

But after library officials fielded calls they say threatened protests, they reversed course again and re-cancelled the event just hours before it was due to start.

They called in police and shut down the building after somebody hand-delivered suspicious letters, forcing out researchers working in the archives.

By 6 p.m., three police cars and two fire trucks sat in front of the closed building. There were no protesters outside the building and just a handful of staff inside.

About 90 minutes later., police had investigated and were satisfied the letters weren't dangerous.

The Free Thinking Film Society had paid to rent a theatre in the library to screen the movie. Their spokesman called it chilling.

“It’s like the Iranians have set something in motion and they’re able to shut down a film in the capital of Canada,” said Fred Litwin.

“They obviously thought they could push around some people and they were right.”

Interesting contrast

Toronto Archbishop Thomas Collins has put up a Q&A on how Anglicans will be received into the Catholic Church.

He writes:

The corporate dimension of Anglicanorum Coetibus does not mean that whole communities of Anglicans will enter the Catholic Church in a way that sweeps along individuals who may not want to do so. Freedom of conscience must be respected. Although an ordinariate parish is a corporate community (and in the Anglican Use parishes in the United States, we have for several decades had a model of what an ordinariate parish will be like) each member of the new congregation must freely and individually choose to become a Roman Catholic, who will then become a member of a parish within an Anglican Use Ordinariate within the Catholic Church. Although many other members of the group of Anglicans may also at the same time be in the process of reception into the Catholic Church, and will together form an ordinariate parish within the Catholic Church, each person enters the Catholic Church individually, after an appropriate process of instruction, as will Anglican clergy, who must also individually go through a process of discernment and formation in preparation for possible ordination to the Catholic priesthood, in accordance with the pastoral needs of the ordinariate and the Church’s requirements for ordination as Catholic priests of the ordinariate.

Contrast that with what the new Ordinary of the Personal Ordinariate of Our Lady of Walsingham Fr. Keith Newton said at a news conference with the English Episcopal delegate Bishop Alan Hopes by his side:

All these things seem very quick but we’ve been thinking about this for the last fifteen months since the Apostolic Constitution. And I know that the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith feel very strongly that the first priests needed to be in the Ordinariate quite quickly so that we can help to gather and help those who are coming over. That’s why we’ve been ordained within two weeks. The others will go through a longer process. They will have some formation from Ash Wednesday to Pentecost. It’s very important to say that formation will continue afterwards. It’s not that they will have any less than any other clergy coming from the C of E who wants to be a priest into the Catholic Church. It’s just that it will be done in a different way. It’s important that those priests will pass to their groups. There will be an intensive bit of preparation before Ordination, but that will go on for up to two years.

Q. Can you put a figure on the numbers who may come over?

I wouldn’t want to say any number. Until a person actually says, 'this is what I want to do’, then they have the opportunity to say 'I’ve decided not to do it'. They have to be committed to being a Catholic. Although we say it's groups, within those groups everybody has to make a personal decision. It’s what my colleague Fr Andrew said; it’s a bit like going on a charabanc outing to Walsingham. You have to pay your own fare and get on on your own, but then the bus travels along. Every individual has to make a declaration of faith and receive confirmation and chrismation. But they will do it together. Until they do it, I can’t say. Some of the groups may be a dozen or twenty, some may be 60 or 70. Until that moment comes we just can’t say.

Chipping away at Catholic identity

Why have a Catholic School if it can not or does not teach with the Church teaches about human sexuality?

Why don't homosexual activists found their own schools instead of forcing their sexual dogma on the rest of us like gay inquisitors? Can't we agree to disagree and live and let live?

HALTON, Ontario, January 12, 2011 ( - After pressure from homosexual activists, a committee of the Halton Catholic District School Board voted Tuesday night to recommend the scrapping of a policy that required schools to be faithful to Church teaching in the area of homosexuality.

In a 6-2 vote, the committee - composed of all nine trustees - recommended the rescinding of the current equity policy, which had won praise from pro-family groups, and replace it temporarily with a controversial Catholic template policy.

The effort was launched by trustee Paul Marai, a homosexual activist elected in October, who was supported by lobby groups such as Egale and

“Does Egale now have more influence on the board’s teaching on morals than the Catholic bishops and the Catholic community?” asked Alissa Golob of Campaign Life Catholics. “By voting to rescind their policy conforming to the Catholic Church’s teaching, the Halton board has voted to go against the faith, the teachings of the Church on homosexuality.”

“They’ve also put themselves in direct disobedience to the Ontario bishops with regards to gay-straight alliances,” she added.

I could get used to this !

My friend Barbara gave me a gift certificate for a pedicure. So today, I went to see Susanne Gervais for some delightful pampering.

Being the ink-stained wretch that I am, I don't take care of my hands and I had a broken nail, so she offered to fix it. Then I decided, what the heck! why not a manicure with the same Strawberry Marguerita nail polish that she had applied to my toes. She told me it is unusual for someone to choose a color like that for the winter, but hey! Last pedicure I had red toe nails and felt slightly risque.

My hands and feet look gorgeous and I wanted to show them off, so I asked Susanne to fish my camera out of my purse--my nail polish was drying you see--and take a photo.

She is reachable at 613 820-5300 and available by appointment. She has flexible hours so you could even swing by in the evening if that's your preference.

I am happy, happy, happy.

Guys, it doesn't take much to make a gal happy. Valentine's Day is coming up. A little gift certificate from Susanne for a manicure or a pedicure or a facial (I see a facial in my future) or a massage.

Her rates are reasonable and she's in Nepean not far from Bayshore, just off the Queensway.

Monday, January 17, 2011

The overwhelming demand for women's ordination

Mulier Fortis captures the hordes protesting outside the historic ordinations of former Church of England bishops on Saturday (h/t Father Z):

I was slightly amused to see this photo on Facebook. The hordes of supporters calling for the Holy Father to ordain women…

…almost outnumbered by the cameraman and the interviewer…

Sunday, January 16, 2011

Some Victor Davis Hanson for a Sunday afternoon

He is always interesting:

When I lived in Greece in the 1970s, it was a relatively poor country. The road system was deplorable; the airport at Athens was little more than an insulated warehouse. I usually stayed in hotels with bathrooms down the hall. A bus trip of about 200 miles translated into about a six hour marathon. The buses were often of eastern European make and spewed black smoke into the Athenian air whose toxic bite could devour marble. Rail travel was nightmarish (biking was quicker). There was no bridge across the Gulf of Corinth. The Athens “subway” was little more than a 19th century electric carriage.

Greeks’ second homes were one bedroom village affairs. It was rare to see a Mercedes in Athens. I knew one Greek who had a swimming pool. Getting off an island ferry boat usually meant meeting a swarm of older ladies trying to hawk you their extra bedroom for rent.

You get the picture:1970s Greece reflected a small southern Balkan population wedded to a siesta lifestyle, on a rocky peninsula in which there was little wealth other than tourism, a poorly developed agriculture, some shipping, and remittances from Greek expatriates in the United States and Germany.

Fast forward to the post-Olympics Greece: five star hotels, 20,000 plus private swimming pools (most of them unreported for tax purposes), half the work force ensconced in cushy government or government-related jobs, Attica dotted with Riviera-like second homes, BMWs more common than Mercedeses, billions of euros worth of new highways, and a new airport and subway system.

In other words, somehow a country without a manufacturing base and with poor productivity, a small population, an inefficient statist economy, and bloated public sector suddenly went from near third world status to a standard of living not that much different from a Munich or Amsterdam. How? Did Greek socialism produce all that wealth?

Please read the whole thing, because he says most interesting things about California, too.

"A powerful affirmation of the orthodoxy of the departing Anglicans . . ."

Damian Thompson writes of the Personal Ordinariate:

My first reaction was one of relief that the Catholic Church has had the courage to entrust stewardship of the Ordinariate to a former “flying bishop” who knows intimately and is trusted by the Anglo-Catholics preparing to make the journey. This is a powerful affirmation of the doctrinal orthodoxy of the departing Anglicans: Rome has finally recognised that only impaired communion separates many Anglo-Catholics from the Holy See. At the same time, the Ordinariate puts on the spot those traditionalists who say they recognise the primacy of the Pope but, for one reason or another, have no plans to take up his radical offer, made in the teeth of opposition not only from members of the Catholic Bishops’ Conference but also from within the Curia. The setting up of the Ordinariate will be fascinating to observe; equally interesting, I reckon, will be the manoeuvring on the Anglican bank of the Tiber.

Bishop Mercer issues clarification

He told Fr. Anthony Chadwick at The English Catholic the following:

Bishop Robert Mercer CR has asked that the following be clarified with regard to the ENI news article released on the 14th January 2011.

Bishop Robert Mercer CR has not said at any time that he will be ordained at the same time as Edwin Barnes in Portsmouth on the 5th March 2011 as reported in the London (ENInews) news article released by Trevor Grundy 14th January. No decision has as yet taken place with regards to his ordination in the ‘Ordianariate of Our Lady of Walsingham’.

Saturday, January 15, 2011

From Cardinal Levada's statement

This was read at the ordinations today of the first priests of the Ordinariate of Our Lady of Walsingham:

Together with Reverend Burnham and Reverend Broadhurst, Keith Newton will oversee the catechetical preparation of the first groups of Anglicans in England and Wales who will be received into the Catholic Church together with their pastors at Easter, and will accompany the clergy preparing for ordination to the Catholic priesthood around Pentecost. I urge you all to assist the new Ordinary in the unique mission which has been entrusted to him not only with your prayers but also with every practical support.
This is really good news. First of all, there had been many rumors and comments that Rome would have to appoint a Roman bishop as the first ordinary. In the comments section of The Anglo-Catholic, Fr. Christopher Phillips, an Anglican Use priest in San Antonio Texas, writes:

Fr. Christopher Phillips says:

This appointment is wonderful news. There have been so many "Vaticanistas" who have wanted to bet me that the Holy Father would never entrust the initial running of the Ordinariate to one of the three founding clerics, but would put in "an experienced Catholic bishop" at first. When I pointed out the clear words of Anglicanorum coetibus, there would be a "yes, but…" response. This appointment emphasises the fact that Pope Benedict means what he says.

Congratulations to the new priests! We pray for them, and especially for Fr. Newton as he leads this first Personal Ordinariate into a glorious future!

The other point is that the former Anglicans will be in charge of preparing their fellow Anglicans for reception into the Ordinariate. This should go a long way to dispel the rumors that Anglicanorum coetibus is really all about absorption.

Archbishop Nichols homily at ordination of first Ordinariate priests

Here is an excerpt of what the Archbishop of Westminster said. Beautiful. (my bolds):


Many ordinations have taken place in this Cathedral during the 100 years of its history. But none quite like this. Today is a unique occasion marking a new step in the life and history of the Catholic Church. This morning the establishment of the first Personal Ordinariate under the provision of the Apostolic Constitution ‘Anglicanorum Coetibus’ has been announced in our hearing. So I too salute John Broadhurst, Andrew Burnham and Keith Newton who are to be the first priests of the Ordinariate of Our Lady of Walsingham. In particular I offer my prayers and best wishes to Keith, chosen by the Holy Father to be its first Ordinary.


Today we thank the Holy Father for the courageous leadership he gives in establishing the first Personal Ordinariate. His intentions are clear. It is, as he has said, ‘a prophetic gesture’. It is to contribute to the wider goal of visible unity between our two Churches by helping us to know in practice how our patrimonies of faith and living can strengthen each other in our mission today. At Oscott College, the Holy Father said to us bishops: ‘It (the Ordinariate) helps us to set our sights on the ultimate goal of all ecumenical activity: the restoration of full ecclesial communion in the context of which the mutual exchange of gifts from our respective spiritual patrimonies serves as an enrichment to us all.’

The visible unity of the Church, then, is central to our thoughts today. Indeed, it was never far from the heart of St Paul as is well expressed in his Letter to the Ephesians and, a little earlier, to the Philippians. His appeal is steadfast: that believing in Christ as Lord, that sharing in one Spirit, that worship of one God and Father create a unity which must be constantly served by the practice of humility, gentleness, patience and love. In Philippians he is more explicit about the attitudes and behaviours that threaten this unity: selfish ambition for the power of office; the search for personal approval or prestige; a focus on the importance of self within a competitive spirit, all taking us away from ‘the mind of Christ Jesus’. (cf Phil 2.1‐5).

History shows how right he is. These patterns of failure mark our histories. They also find expression in the lives of each of us today. So we ask pardon for our failings and seek to renew within ourselves that mind of Christ Jesus himself.

The quest for the visible unity of the Church remains an imperative. In it the role of the successor of St Peter is crucial. Pope Benedict expressed it thus in Westminster Abbey: ‘Fidelity to the word of God, precisely because it is a true word, demands of us an obedience which leads us together to a deeper understanding of the Lord’s will, an obedience which must be free of intellectual conformism or facile accommodation to the spirit of the age. This is the word of encouragement which I wish to leave with you this evening, and I do so in fidelity to my ministry as the Bishop of Rome and the Successor of Saint Peter, charged with a particular care for the unity of Christ’s flock.’ (Westminster Abbey, 18 Sept 2010)

The Pope’s ministry to the visible unity of the Church is central to the faith of the Catholic Church. It is central to the faith of those who enter into full communion in this Ordinariate. It is central to the welcome, encouragement and support the Catholic community in England and Wales gives to this development and to all who seek to be part of it.

In his Letter to the Ephesians, St Paul speaks about the variety of gifts given to the community of believers. While recognising that variety, in this Mass we focus, in particular, on the gift of the ordained priesthood within the Catholic Church. It is a priesthood which takes it shape, its purpose, its experience from the Cross of Christ, the great cross above us, referred to so movingly by Pope Benedict. Through this ordained priesthood, the one, same sacrifice of Christ is made real at the altar and offered again to the Eternal Father. It is made present as the sacrament of our salvation. This Mass, every Mass, is at once the prayer of Christ and the prayer of the Body of Christ, his people. Through it Christ constitutes the Church afresh each day, both in Himself and in its visible unity, in the world. This is the work of the ordained priest – the daily constituting of the Church ‐ and it is a priceless gift and service for which we thank God constantly. To this one sacrifice we bring our own small sacrifices, the losses and hardships we carry through failure and sin, through the pursuit of truth and love, through the passing of time. All is offered to the Father in one sacrifice of praise to become a means of our salvation.

In today’s Gospel passage from St. John, we have heard again of the appearance of the Risen Christ to his disciples. At that moment he brought to them the fruits of his triumph over death: the forgiveness of sins and the gift of peace. Here too we come to the work of the ordained priest: to pronounce with confidence the forgiveness of God and to bring peace to a troubled soul and a troubled world.

To this service, to this ministry we welcome our three priests today. But we must be attentive to the words of the Gospel. In bestowing these gifts, the Risen Lord also employs an eloquent gesture: he shows them his hands and his side.

He shows them his wounds. The mission they receive, the mission of reconciliation, comes from the wounds of Christ. This is the mission we share and at every Mass we once again gaze on the wounded, broken body of the risen Lord. Our mission is characterised by woundedness: a mission to a wounded world; a mission entrusted to a wounded Church, carried out by wounded disciples. The wounds of sin are our business. The wounds of Christ, even though we have caused them, are also our consolation and strength.

The first to witness these wounds, the first, perhaps, to grasp their true significance, was Mary, Mother of Jesus. Standing at the foot of the cross she witnessed the inflicting of those wounds. Holding his dead body she must have been marked by the blood shed from them. Now she looks down on our new priests from the other side of this Cathedral crucifix above me. Mary always holds before us her Son, presenting him to us as our hope and salvation. Nowhere does she do so with more grace and elegance than in the image of Our Lady of Walsingham. As this Ordinariate, her Ordinariate, comes into being so may we entrust to her the work of bringing it to fulfilment.

Friday, January 14, 2011

Fr Dwight Longenecker on the Ordinariate

Under a provision established in the mid-1990s, when women were first ordained to the Anglican priesthood, clergy and congregations could decline the ministry of their diocesan bishop in favor of one of the flying bishops. While this provision was in place, the Anglo-Catholics in the Church of England felt they still had an honored place. In fact, they were a church within a church -- and, since women's ordination in the mid-1990s, they were becoming increasingly marginalized and excluded. Last year, as legislation allowing women to become bishops moved through the synod of the Church of England, it became clear that the provision for provincial episcopal visitors would be withdrawn.

At the same time, the Vatican was responding to requests from the Traditional Anglican Communion for some sort of structure to allow Anglicans to come into full communion with the Catholic Church while retaining some of their traditions. The Traditional Anglican Communion is a global federation of autonomous denominations within the larger Anglican family. Sometimes called "continuing churches," they are some of more than 100 little breakaway Anglican groups. Not-so-secret visits were paid to the Vatican by the three Church of England flying bishops, and sources believe that it was the request of the flying bishops (in addition to the already existing requests from the Traditional Anglican Communion) that convinced Pope Benedict XVI to take action and set in motion the now famous document Anglicanorum Coetibus, which allows for the erection of Anglican ordinariates worldwide.

That the ordinariate will be set up by the end of this month in England is astounding. Most of us who have been watching the ordinariate develop imagined that it would first be erected in the United States. However, it is right that the Anglican ordinariate be established in England first, since the entire Anglican Communion looks to England for its inspiration and origin.

Bishop Mercer speaks to the news media


Bishop Robert Mercer CR has asked that the following be clarified with regard to the ENI news article released on the 14th January 2011.

Bishop Robert Mercer CR has not said at any time that he will be ordained at the same time as Edwin Barnes in Portsmouth on the 5th March 2011 as reported in the London (ENInews) news article released by Trevor Grundy 14th January. No decision has as yet taken place with regards to his ordination in the ‘Ordianariate of Our Lady of Walsingham’.


Finally, Bishop Robert Mercer is mentioned in the British media. And my oh my does the mild-mannered monk give unpolitically correct copy. You got to love him. My bolds:

Shortly afterwards, Dr Rowan Williams, the Archbishop of Canterbury and the spiritual head of the 77 million-member worldwide Anglican Communion, said that the pope’s offer to disaffected Anglicans had put him into an "awkward position." Just before Christmas last year he said he was "very taken aback that this large step was put before us (the Church of England) without any real consultation."

However, Robert Mercer, the former Bishop of Matabeleland (Zimbabwe) and former bishop of the Anglican Catholic Church in Canada, said he sees the pope's move as a step toward reconciliation.

"I’m a great enthusiast for what is going to happen on Saturday ... Off and on over 400 years, the Anglican and Roman Catholic churches have talked in a pretty desultory way about reconciliation. Now it is happening. I will cross to Rome as soon as I hear from the Vatican. No one can say how many Anglicans will do likewise but this is the start," Mercer told ENInews in an interview.

"The present pope ... is a revolutionary and this is a revolutionary thing he is doing," Mercer added. "It’s the logical outcome of the 19th century’s Oxford Movement." The movement stated that Anglicanism along with Orthodoxy and Roman Catholicism form three branches of the one Catholic church.

Mercer said the pope is expected to appoint a leader of the new ordinariate later this month.

He said that in recent years Anglicans had pursued a path that had made reconciliation with Rome difficult. He included support from the “liberal wing” of the Church of England for gay marriages, the ordination of women as priests and what he called "extreme feminism that turns God into a mother figure and Jesus as a daughter. In other words, what they have been doing is a revolt against the universal Christian tradition."

Earlier this month, the Catholic Church in England and Wales issued a statement saying that the three former Anglican bishops – Broadhurst, Burnham and Newton – had been received with some members of their families into full communion with the Catholic Church during Mass at Westminster Cathedral on New Year’s Eve. Three former Anglican religious sisters were also received.

Two more Anglicans, Edwin Barnes, former Bishop of Richborough and David Silk, former Bishop of Ballarat in Australia, are expected to be ordained as Catholic priests either this month or in February. Mercer said he expects he will be ordained at the same time as Barnes. {I guess not}

Thursday, January 13, 2011

Eye witness account of ordinations today

Thursday, 13 January 2011

Ordinariate Ordinations in London

Where were you when JFK was shot? Where were you when the white smoke came from the Sistine Chapel that elected Pope Benedict? Where were you when the Ordinariate began?

Tonight, quietly and calmly - but with the beauty and splendour of the Mass - the face of English Christianity changed. Tonight the first three men were ordained for the Ordinariate in these isles and another step towards the fulfilment of Christ's prayer - that all may be one - was made.

John Broadhurst, Andrew Burnham and Keith Newton are brave men of great integrity who, only a few days ago, left their old lives behind to follow Christ's call and to take up the great challenge laid out by the Holy Father in Anglicanorum coetibus. These three, now in the full communion of the Catholic Church, gave up all they had been given and this evening submitted humbly to 'the quiet rectification', in Aidan Nichols' words, of their orders.

It was moving beyond words to be present at this momentous occasion.
More here. The former Church of England bishops will be ordained to the priesthood on Saturday.

News has leaked the ordinariate will be called the Ordinariate of Our Lady of Walsingham.