Columns

Parents must nurture children's vocations

Mark Pickup

November 21, 2011

Archbishop Richard Smith's recent pastoral letter, Pastoral Priorities of the Archdiocese of Edmonton, identified vocation promotion as one of the three priorities along with evangelization and faith formation. My previous columns have addressed the latter two. Now I want to look at the promotion of vocations.

God calls us all to lives of faith, obedience and service. We who have welcomed Christ into our lives are called to "come follow me." We are called to make known the Gospel message throughout a hurting world. This can happen in various ways.

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Teacher of the faith underlines Christian call to discipleship

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November 14, 2011

In his catechesis at the Oct. 27 Nothing More Beautiful session, Archbishop Richard Smith provided a succinct, thorough overview of Christian discipleship. The text of his talk, which consumed four pages in last week's WCR, might not seem concise. However, rare is the talk that would more concisely provide a thorough-going alternative to the faulty notion that being a Catholic means a life of following rules.

The archbishop hangs his hat on the Second Vatican Council's teaching that the meaning of Christ's revelation is expressed not only by his words, but also through his actions. When we try to live as Christ lived – that is, to be a disciple – we run up against our own hypocrisy. Our actions never measure up to what we say we believe.

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Death takes us on a lonely path, the same as Jesus trod

Fr. Ron Rolheiser, omi

November 14, 2011

When I was 22 years old, a seminarian, I was privileged to have a unique kind of desert experience. I sat with my siblings in a palliative care room for several weeks, watching my father die.

My father was young still, 62, and in good health until being struck with pancreatic cancer. He was a man of faith and he brought that to his final struggle. He wasn't afraid of God, whom he had served all his life, nor of the afterlife, which his faith assured him was to be joy-filled.

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Christ is King, on earth, as in heaven

 Lasha Morningstar

November 14, 2011
Christ the King
November 20, 2011

Mention monarchy and most folk's ears perk up. The most recent bit of chatter came out of Perth, Australia, when Commonwealth leaders gathered to discuss items of common interest.

England's Prime Minister David Gordon proposed changes to allow a royal's daughter to be queen, changing a centuries' old rule that said sons took precedence over older sisters.

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Climate change a moral crisis – faith leaders

Joe Gunn

November 14, 2011

In an historic declaration last month, some 26 communities of faith in Canada, joined by another seven faith-based organizations, stated that climate change represents a moral crisis. They also recognized that solutions to this crisis will not be found without relying on the spiritual resources of the world's religious traditions.

Canada's faith leaders went further. They debunked the bogus argument that climate change is not caused by human activity. The faith leaders correctly named "the unprecedented human contribution to climate change."

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Mystery of human person finds fulfillment in Absolute Love

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November 7, 2011

The interfaith prayer gathering at Assisi Oct. 27 draws attention to the mystery of the human person. There, holy people, people whose focus is on the Divine, gathered in startling diversity.

One might think devotion to the one God would inspire humanity with visible unity in worship and belief. Indeed, the Catholic belief is that such unity will one day be a reality.

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Faith, like love, needs to be sustained by ritual

Fr. Ron Rolheiser, omi

November 7, 2011

"Yes, junk," she said again, but a little more quietly. And that little more-more-quiet tone got me. And she went on: "You don't have to have all those reasons. We love each other. That's enough."

Irritation, anger and boredom within a relationship do not necessarily mean that love has died, as this story illustrates. Love rests at a deeper place. But how do we touch that place inside less-than-idyllic feelings?

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Wounded warrior still fought injustice

Kathleen Giffin

November 7, 2011
33rd Sunday in Ordinary Time
November 13, 2011

Father Dajczer, in his book The Gift of Faith, writes about the parable of the talents, the Gospel for this Sunday. He states that the talents God gives us are not just gift and material, but opportunity. Opportunity is found especially in the absence of things and in suffering.

He says that God is continually bestowing his gifts upon us, and that how we use those gifts, especially the gift of difficult experiences, is the way that we are transformed. It is easy to see the possession of certain "talents" or abilities as gift; but what about sickness as a talent, or the pain of loss as the gift with which to transform our world and us?

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Share the Good News of Christ's love

Mark Pickup

November 7, 2011

There are three priorities identified in Archbishop Richard Smith's pastoral letter entitled Pastoral Priorities of The Archdiocese of Edmonton. They are as follows: evangelization, faith formation and vocations promotion.

My last column addressed faith formation. It is vitally important that Christian faith be well formed, based upon a relationship with Christ and be supported by the solid foundation of Church teachings. In this column, I want to reflect on evangelization and how lay people like you and me can participate in this task.

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Traumas of war leave a lasting mark that may never heal

Lasha Morningstar

November 7, 2011

Striding down Yonge Street in Toronto on a fall day in 1945, Elmer Foy looked the picture of male vigour. Always polite, the striking, tall Irishman stopped when two posh, stony-faced women stood in front of him. They handed him an envelope and kept on walking.

Elmer opened it. A white feather – the symbol of cowardice – fluttered to the ground.

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