Columns

From the category archives: Columns

Columns in the WCR

Worn-out piano symbolizes new year's transition

Dr. Gerry Turcotte
January 25, 2016

Several years ago, when my daughter decided she wanted to learn to play the piano, a good friend tracked down a used upright for us on Kijiji. Even though it was on its last legs, Sophie was able to spend almost two years learning her basic skills until a better instrument was needed. When we discovered that the soundboard on the first piano was irreparably damaged, it became a large, useless, dust-collecting sculpture in the dining room.

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Refugee crisis requires both open doors and vigilance

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January 11, 2016

The Canadian people and government deserve congratulations for their openness to receiving large numbers of Syrian refugees. Although the new Liberal government has promised to accept 25,000 refugees, the numbers may end up being higher, a fact with which the majority of Canadians are comfortable.

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As intimacy deepens, so does the mystery of God

Fr. Ron Rolheiser, omi
January 11, 2016

When I first began teaching theology, I fantasized about writing a book about the hiddenness of God. Why does God remain hidden and invisible? Why doesn't God just show himself plainly in a way that nobody can dispute? One standard answer to that question was this: If God did manifest himself plainly there wouldn't be any need for faith.

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Mary's role is to point us toward Christ

Lydia Cristini
January 11, 2016
Second Sunday in Ordinary Time
January 17, 2016

Mary and I have never been close. Don't get me wrong; I really respect her. I know her prayers are incredibly powerful. Whenever I need to pull out all the stops, prayer-wise, the rosary is my go-to. The Hail Mary, and especially the Memorare are my favourite prayers in a pinch. Not only that, but she is the ultimate Christian. Her "yes" to God in the Magnificat is a beautiful expression of perfect humility, faith and trust in God.

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Mercy is integral to spirit of Vatican II

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January 11, 2016

Although God's mercy is the recurrent theme of the current papacy, Pope Francis is not the only recent pope for whom it has been a major theme. St. John Paul II, for example, made it the focus of his second encyclical, Rich in Mercy, issued in 1980. Pope Francis, in fact, sees the theme of mercy as one way of keeping the Second Vatican Council alive as an event and in our hearts.

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Two chances every year to take responsibility for your life

Lasha Morningstar
January 11, 2016

We have two New Years. The first of course is the New Year celebration on Jan. 1. The second is the day after our birthday. These are the days when we traditionally make resolutions - vows almost always are targeted at changing some habit or pastime that twigs our conscience. About four or five weeks later, our resolve melts like a dripping spring icicle and we break that resolution. So we add guilt to our shame. Stomp on the brakes. Why do we set ourselves up to fail?

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Anxiety rampant due to society's confusion

Kathleen Giffin
January 11, 2016
Third Sunday in Ordinary Time
January 24, 2016

We live in interesting and difficult times. I spoke to a young man today who told me how life is harder for young people now because things are more "open"; the imperative to find one's own truth, to determine one's own course and meaning in life has been broadened to include all possibilities. The result is bewilderment and anxiety in the face of infinite choices and parameters. Truth has been declared relative, biological sex has been declared irrelevant, ultimate meaning is denied and the power to define has been conferred upon the individual. No wonder anxiety is rampant.

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Another step toward positive relations with Jews

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January 11, 2016

A new Vatican document on the Church's relationship with the Jewish people insists "there can only be one single covenant history of God with humanity." The New Covenant, established through Christ's death and resurrection and the descent of the Holy Spirit, fulfills, but does not replace, God's covenant with Israel. Understanding this is crucial to a proper relationship between Christians and Jews.

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Mercy can spark reconciliation which brings light of peace

Douglas Roche
January 11, 2016

I have been reflecting on how the Year of Mercy, proclaimed by Pope Francis, connects with my work of building the conditions for peace in the world. This has led me to examine the run-up to an extraordinary meeting to be held in 2016: the first-ever World Humanitarian Summit. "Mercy" is a word and a virtue that ought to be celebrated. In fact, Pope Francis called this special year the Extraordinary Jubilee of Mercy.

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National inquiry into missing indigenous women a local issue

Bob McKeon
January 11, 2016

Last month Prime Minister Justin Trudeau announced the establishment of a national inquiry to investigate the disproportionate number of missing and murdered indigenous women and girls in Canada. This public inquiry had been requested by many across the country. The Truth and Reconciliation Commission in its Final Report explicitly mentioned such a public inquiry in its Calls to Action.

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