WCR This Week

From the category archives: LeftColumn

Stories for the Left Column of the WCR This Week Page

More than 6M Filipinos celebrate Mass with pope

January 26, 2015
FRANCIS ROCCA
CATHOLIC NEWS SERVICE

Pope Francis urged a crowd estimated at six million gathered in a Manila park to protect the family "against insidious attacks and programs contrary to all that we hold true and sacred, all that is most beautiful and noble in our culture." The pope's homily at the Jan. 18 Mass also reprised several other themes he had sounded during the four-day visit, including environmental problems, poverty and corruption. Despite continuous rain, the congregation in Rizal Park began to assemble the night before the afternoon celebration. The crowd was so dense in spots that people passed hosts to fellow worshippers unable to reach priests distributing Communion.

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CSS enjoys another successful Sign of Hope campaign

Beth Allard-Clough

January 26, 2015
RAMON GONZALEZ
WESTERN CATHOLIC REPORTER

EDMONTON – The Sign of Hope campaign has again surpassed its campaign goal in support of Catholic Social Services. From October to December the campaign raised $3.4 million – $300,000 more than its goal of $3.1 million. "I'm thrilled and proud," said campaign chair Beth Allard-Clough. "I'm incredibly grateful for the amazing support of our community." What brought the campaign over the top was "lots of hard work as a team," Allard-Clough explained. "I really believe in this agency and I am passionate about the cause, and when you believe in something you make it happen."

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Pallottines foster lay involvement

Fr. Francis Mariappa

January 26, 2015
RAMON GONZALEZ
WESTERN CATHOLIC REPORTER

Father Gottfried Seifert joined the Society of the Catholic Apostolate, better known as the Pallottine Fathers, in Germany in the early 1950s. "There was no divine intervention or any great revelation," he says of his priestly vocation. The young lad had to decide what to do with his life and since he felt called to a life of service, the priesthood seemed like a good option. Seifert chose the Pallottines because he knew the order and was familiar with its charism. He was ordained in 1958 and was sent to Canada the following year.

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World without mothers would be inhumane – pope

January 26, 2015
CAROL GLATZ
CATHOLIC NEWS SERVICE

Mothers are indispensable to society and the Church, showing the world what it means to generously give oneself for others, Pope Francis said. Mothers respect life and display tenderness and moral strength even in times of trouble, the pope said at his Jan. 7 general audience. Even though mothers are often "exalted" with praise and poetry, they often get very little concrete help and appreciation, he said. In his talk, the pope looked specifically at Mary's role in the Gospel accounts of Christmas. "She gives us Jesus, she shows us Jesus, she lets us see Jesus," he said.

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Scripture melded into melody; music ministry was born

Steve Bell

January 26, 2015
RUANE REMY
THE CATHOLIC REGISTER

Steve Bell was ready to face the music: his decade-long career as a nightclub musician was over. A little over age 30, he played in bars six nights a week, not making enough money to support his young family. He says he slipped into a deep depression and realized that, other than music, he had no employable skills. Then one night, as he lay in bed, he felt a presence, a presence he now acknowledges to be God, which provided him with a sense that he was meant to do something else. "So I quit playing, thinking that I was going to hang up my guitar and my career was over. But literally when I quit is when all of this new music came out of me," said Bell.

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Massive 'blanket' recounts residential school trauma

January 26, 2015
FRANK FLEGEL
PRAIRIE MESSENGER

REGINA – "The most poignant artifact for me are the braids," said Dr. Shauneen Pete, as she explained the meaning of the "Memorial Blanket" artwork set up along a wall in the University of Regina's Research and Innovation Centre Atrium. The Memorial Blanket was put together by West Coast artist and master carver Carey Newman. Residential school artifacts were collected from across Canada and placed in panels of the nine-metre-wide work. The artwork includes everything from an old door, worn-out skates, a shoe, door handles, a clock, pieces of wood, glass and photos. Old books and encyclopedias occupy slots along the bottom of the work. A slide show of photos and letters are displayed on an old table behind the blanket.

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In Sri Lanka, pope appeals for national reconciliation

Kurukkal SivaSri T. Mahadeva

January 26, 2015
FRANCIS ROCCA
CATHOLIC NEWS SERVICE

COLOMBO, SRI LANKA – Pope Francis told Sri Lankans seeking reconciliation after two-and-a-half decades of civil war that, before they can forgive each other, they must repent of their own sins. "Only when we come to understand, in light of the cross, the evil we are capable of, and have even been a part of, can we experience true remorse and true repentance," the pope said Jan. 14, during a prayer service in the northern jungle town of Madhu. "Only then can we receive the grace to approach one another in true contrition, offering and seeking true forgiveness." The pope had traveled 250 kms in a helicopter from the capital city of Colombo to visit the shrine of Our Lady of the Rosary, which houses a statue of Mary venerated by Sri Lankans since the 16th century.

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The rains pour down, but weather won't separate Pope Francis from the people.

January 26, 2015
CINDY WOODEN
CATHOLIC NEWS SERVICE

MANILA – New situations are opportunities to learn new things, even about the 78-year-old Pope Francis. After two days of watching the pope tenaciously keep his appointments in the Philippines despite pouring rain Jan. 17-18, one lesson is that the papal wardrobe needs to be expanded to include rain gear. A white umbrella – the usual Vatican response to a drizzle – is not adequate. And cancelling or moving an event indoors – the usual Vatican response to a heavy rain – is not acceptable to Pope Francis if his appointment is with thousands or even millions of predominantly poor people.

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Daughters of St. Paul made for media

Sr. Helena Burns

January 26, 2015
RUANE REMY
THE CATHOLIC REGISTER

Over the years, the strongest of Pauline Sisters could manage the huge printing presses and handle the massive rolls of paper – work that men usually did. But these women religious were determined to share the Gospel the way their founder thought best a century ago: The Daughters of St. Paul were made for media. Today, the sisters outsource printing, but have their hands in almost every media pie imaginable spanning print, broadcast and the Internet. Technology has been good to these media mavens. "That's what makes us so unique.

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