Columns

Jay's Articles

Shunning is one form of abuse of power

Lasha Morningstar

June 9, 2014

Shunning is a rather arcane word. History and religious studies students come across it when studying groups such as the Amish. Strict, living their lives according to set rules, they shun any one of the group who leaves or breaks one of their cardinal edicts. Ignore them. Do not speak to them. Shunning hurts and it is alive and well in offices, schools, neighbourhoods, families. All of a sudden you are invisible to former friends, fellow workers, classmates, members of charity groups, family members.

Fatherhood a gift that calls dads to love, guide, inspire

Dr. Gerry Turcotte

June 9, 2014

I never got to speak to my father as he lay dying. Quite simply, he was the most important figure in my life, a humble, funny and deeply honourable individual, a unique person who could discipline without anger, inspire without fanfare, and who kept the ship afloat no matter how bad the seas. Despite a desperately poor upbringing and a difficult life, he managed to steer his family through good and bad times and to ensure that we had all the necessities of life.

Those who believe in Jesus have eternal life

Ralph Himsl

June 9, 2014
Corpus Christi
June 22, 2014

Today's Gospel Reading from John tells of a time of intense activity on the part of Jesus. His curing of the sick, acts of compassion and mercy in themselves, also offered testimony of a person possessed of remarkable powers. As John puts it, in the verses preceding today's reading, "A great crowd of people followed him because they saw the signs he had performed by healing the sick." Jesus recognized a need of the crowd and we have the occasion of the feeding of the 5,000 – another convincing sign.

Tutu brings climate change struggle to Alberta

Joe Gunn

June 9, 2014

A bishop is making news – calling on Canadians to restore our moral standing in the global community. Are we listening? Desmond Tutu is (Anglican) archbishop emeritus of Cape Town. A confidant of Nelson Mandela in the struggle against apartheid in South Africa, Tutu won the Noble Peace Prize in 1984. Tutu came to Alberta at the end of May – and his message was making waves.

Why is it OK for us to pray to the Virgin Mary?

Sr. Louise Zdunich

June 9, 2014

A lady who is Catholic now belongs to one of the "new age" religions. She was told that you do not pray to Mary because she is human. You pray only to God. I told her that Jesus was human too and asked her if she prayed to him. She said "that's different" but could not explain why.

Please, please restart negotiations on First Nations education

WCR Logo

May 26, 2014

The federal government cannot and should not abandon its efforts to improve on-reserve First Nations education because of divisions among aboriginal leaders over the now-withdrawn Bill C-33. While the resignation of Shawn Atleo as national chief of the Assembly of First Nations has drawn the most media attention, it is aboriginal students who will suffer most if improvements are not made to on-reserve education.

Prairie author makes pilgrimage of soil and soul

Fr. Ron Rolheiser, omi

May 26, 2014

Nature, desire and soul, we rarely integrate these well. Yet they are so inextricably linked that how we relate to one deeply colours the others; and, indeed, spirituality itself might be defined as what we each do in terms of integrating these three in our lives. More recently notable spiritual authors such as Annie Dillard, Kathleen Norris, Bill Plotkin, and Belden Lane have argued persuasively that physical nature profoundly affects the soul, just as how we manage our private desires deeply influences how we treat nature. Spirituality is naïve when it is divorced from nature and desire. In a book just released, The Road Knows How: A Prairie Pilgrimage through Nature, Desire and Soul, Canadian writer Trevor Herriot joins these voices in calling for a better integration between nature, desire and soul.

Rome offers reminders of deepest truths

Maria Kozakiewicz

May 26, 2014
Ascension of the Lord
June 1, 2014

Rome in May smells of roses, flowering vines and jasmine. Roof and balcony gardens overflow with greenery. Oranges shine through thick, dark leaves of trees. Streets of this huge, ancient city resound with noise that dies gradually well past midnight and for two hours only. Rome of the 21st century is constantly on the go, very much like New York, Toronto or any other leading metropolis. What differentiates it, however, from the secular, fast-paced world elsewhere is the visible and tangible presence of Christian faith. Even an atheist cannot avoid this experience. Faith is present in the tolling of 600 church bells every Sunday morning, the habits of nuns and brothers on streets, small shrines of Mary on walls of buildings.

Pro-lifers must not abandon politics

WCR Logo

May 26, 2014

Liberal leader Justin Trudeau's announcement that pro-life individuals will no longer be allowed to seek federal Liberal nominations is a calamitous move against social justice and human dignity in Canada. All three major parties have now placed themselves foursquare against one of the most basic human rights – the right to life. A few years ago, the late Jack Layton took the same stance in the New Democratic Party – those who support the life of the unborn will not be allowed to run as NDP candidates.

Tweedledum and Tweedledee lead our political parties

Bishop Fred Henry

May 26, 2014

My mom often used the expression – "tweedledum and tweedledee." My dad explained that it means – "six of one, half a dozen of the other." For example, two matters, persons or groups can be very much alike, as in Uncle George says, he's not voting in this election because the candidates are Tweedledum and Tweedledee. I later discovered that these terms were actually invented by John Byrom, who in 1725 made fun of two quarrelling composers, Handel and Bononcini, and said there was little difference between their music, since one went "tweedledum" and the other "tweedledee." The term gained further currency when Lewis Carroll used it for two fat little men in Through the Looking-Glass (1872).