WCR This Week

Jay's Articles

Pregnancy led young woman to become doula, pro-lifer

Darby Ramsay with her son Noah.

April 20, 2015

A young girl from Salmon Arm, B.C., has become a cheerleader for women in labour after facing motherhood at age 16. Darby Ramsay, 19, is a doula, a woman who gives emotional and physical support to women before, during and just after they have a baby. "(Giving) birth is a significant event and it leaves a mark on women for the rest of their lives," she said. Ramsay is also a bold speaker for the pro-life movement. Her testimony, part of LifeCanada's You'll Never Regret Loving This Much campaign, was featured at a series of events at university campuses last month.

A century filled with tears

April 20, 2015

John Ourfali, 77, remembers how as a child he saw an elderly family friend break down and cry whenever he met with Ourfali's parents, unable to speak about what had happened to him and his family in the dark days of what today is known as the Armenian genocide. "He used to cry a lot and couldn't talk about it so we never knew what happened to his family," said Ourfali, an Armenian Catholic whose original family name is Khatcherian.

Papal critique of genocide draws swift Turkish rebuke

April 20, 2015

VATICAN CITY – Commemorating the 100th anniversary of the Armenian genocide, Pope Francis said atrocities from the past have to be recognized ndash; not hidden or denied ndash; for true reconciliation and healing to come to the world. However, Turkey's top government officials criticized the pope's use of the term "genocide" in reference to the deaths of an estimated 1.5 million Armenians during their forced evacuation by Ottoman Turks in 1915-18.

Religious orders ask Ottawa to cut Canada's carbon emissions

April 20, 2015

OTTAWA – Religious congregations and faith groups from across Canada have urged Canada's finance minister to put a price on carbon emissions to combat climate change. The 53 groups asked Finance Minister Joe Oliver to have the Canadian government "set a clear, reliable and effective price for carbon emissions with the goal of reducing greenhouse gas emissions and limiting catastrophic climate change."

Year of Mercy will be time of healing, forgiveness

April 20, 2015

Mercy is what makes God perfect and all-powerful, Pope Francis said in a document officially proclaiming the 2015-16 extraordinary Holy Year of Mercy. "If God limited himself to only justice, he would cease to be God, and would instead be like human beings who ask merely that the law be respected," the pope wrote in Misericordiae Vultus, (The Face of Mercy). The document is the "bull of indiction" calling a holy year to begin Dec. 8.

Dancer stumbles on to synergy of prayer, movement

Franck Waille

April 20, 2015

Franck Waille still has the posture of a dancer. When he stands, his back is straight, his shoulders are squared and his feet are pointed out – a more relaxed version of ballet's first position. Trained in contemporary dance since the age of 19, Waille has more than 27 years of experience as an artist and teacher. The French academic is one of the leading experts on the history and method of François Delsarte, an influential French theorist of artistic practice.

Church's oils spur growth in economy of salvation

Archbishop Richard Smith, aided by seminarian Roger Niedzielski, blesses the holy oils at the annual Chrism Mass March 30 at St. Joseph's Basilica in Edmonton.

April 6, 2015

The Church, like the provincial economy, is resource dependent, says Archbishop Richard Smith. Speaking at the annual Chrism Mass at St. Joseph's Basilica March 30, the archbishop said the Alberta economy is heavily dependent on oil, a resource whose fluctuations in price create an unstable economic foundation for the lives of the people. The Church herself is resource dependent, he acknowledged. "She relies upon the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ."

In the family, we show our real selves

Archbishop Richard Smith

April 6, 2015

Our Holy Father, Pope Francis, has called a special Synod of Bishops for this coming October. The theme he has designated is The Vocation and Mission of the Family in the Church and in the Contemporary World. This provides us with an opportunity to ask what our Easter celebration of the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ teaches us about the call of the family. Much can be said, of course, in response to this question. One dimension of the vocation of the family, especially in our day, is to be what I call the bulwark of the real.

Edmonton native to head Cochrane retreat centre

Susan Campbell

April 6, 2015

Susan Campbell wants people to know what a treasure they have in Mount St. Francis Retreat Centre. Campbell, the newly-appointed director of the Cochrane retreat house, had been to Mount St. Francis before and experienced its spiritual richness. "It's a sacred place," she said, "and I want people to know that it is here and it is available so they can get in touch with their inner spirit."

Romero High School gears up for patron's beautification

April 6, 2015

Students and staff at Edmonton's Archbishop Oscar Romero High School are rejoicing at the upcoming beatification of their school's patron, who gave his life for the poor and the oppressed. They say Romero is their role model and are happy that the Vatican is fast-tracking his cause. Romero was archbishop of San Salvador during the bloody and tension-filled time leading up to El Salvador's 1979-1992 civil war. Shot dead while celebrating Mass in 1980, the archbishop has long been considered a saint by many in Latin America, but the official Vatican process of canonization had lingered for years.

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