WCR This Week

Jay's WCR This Week Articles

Build your marriage on God's foundation

Jean MacKenzie

November 3, 2014
RAMON GONZALEZ
WESTERN CATHOLIC REPORTER

Jean MacKenzie believes marriage is like a house. If the house's foundation is weak, the house will eventually crumble. Speaking at the annual conference of the Catholic Psychotherapy Association of Canada (CPAC), MacKenzie said for couples to have a good marriage, the marriage needs a good foundation. "To help people have strong marriages you must help people understand the elements necessary for a strong foundation," MacKenzie told marriage counsellors, psychologists, mental health therapists, nurses and social workers from several parts of Canada.

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Youth Rally: Greens outnumber reds

Colm Leyne

November 3, 2014
CHRIS MILLER
WESTERN CATHOLIC REPORTER

Beginning his first talk at the Edmonton archdiocesan youth rally, speaker Colm Leyne told the young people in attendance to vote for or against him. If he said something inspirational or told a story that resonated with them, they were to put a green slip of paper in a box at the back of the room. However, if he could not keep them enthused or change the way they think about God or their faith, they were to vote with a red slip.

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CSS Alpha programs help clients end addictive behaviour

Beth Allard-Clough

November 3, 2014
RAMON GONZALEZ
WESTERN CATHOLIC REPORTER

Chad used to drink a lot. As a result, he neglected his responsibilities to his now nine-year-old daughter. It was his love for his daughter that led him to quit drinking, seek treatment and join Catholic Social Services' Alpha House for Men, a recovery house for men with addictions. "I would drink and I would isolate myself, and I couldn't live life in those terms," Chad, who didn't want his last name to be used, recalled in a recent interview. "I was on a path of destruction. If I wasn't at Alpha House, I would either be in jail or dead."

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Bishops fear terrorism growing out of Canadian soil

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November 3, 2014
DEBORAH GYAPONG
CANADIAN CATHOLIC NEWS

OTTAWA – Anti-terrorism experts warn terror attacks involving lone assailants are likely to increase, but faith leaders urge a Christian response to ensure Canada remains an open society. "This is a time of profound national sadness for all Canadians," said Canadian Conference of Catholic Bishops president Gatineau Archbishop Paul-André Durocher Oct. 24 in response to two attacks on Canadian soldiers during the week of Oct. 20. "We worry that the horror of terrorism is taking root in our soil, so long a land of peace, cooperation and inter-cultural collaboration," said Durocher.

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Muslim leaders rebuke ISIS for 'abominable crimes'

Muslims making the Hajj

November 3, 2014
MARK PATTISON
CATHOLIC NEWS SERVICE

More than 100 Muslim leaders – clerics and laypeople alike – have signed on to a letter criticizing the Middle East Muslim military group ISIS, short for the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria. In the 17-page letter, the leaders quote extensively from the Quran, the Muslim scriptures, to rebuke ISIS' tactics and actions. Since the letter was issued Sept. 19, more than 125 Muslim leaders around the world have signed the letter.

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Giving to charity through one's estate leaves a testament

Carla Smiley

November 17, 2014
RAMON GONZALEZ
WESTERN CATHOLIC REPORTER

As disciples of Jesus, Catholics are stewards, not owners, of what God has entrusted to them. "In fact we are accountable to God for what we receive and how we used it to serve others," explains Carla Smiley, coordinator of planned giving for the Edmonton Archdiocese. At the end of our lives, "we are to give whatever gifts we received back to God with increase." One way to be a good steward is to leave money to charity in your will, says Smiley, noting that Catholic charities rely primarily on Catholics for funding.

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Cemeteries are a place of evangelization

November 17, 2014
BETH GRIFFIN
CATHOLIC NEWS SERVICE

Beyond their traditional roles as predictably quiet and often-beautiful places, "cemeteries have a huge opportunity to evangelize and a responsibility to stand for what the Church represents," said New Jersey Catholic cemeteries director. People who come to a committal service in a cemetery may be encountering Catholic funeral tradition for the first time, or for the first time in many years, said Andrew Schafer, executive director for Archdiocese of Newark Catholic Cemeteries. A positive experience might encourage them to return when they need to arrange a burial, Schafer said.

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Survivors need consolation

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November 17, 2014
LASHA MORNINGSTAR
WESTERN CATHOLIC REPORTER

Someone dies. What do we say when we meet their relative, their friend, their family? Too painful, right? Maybe we will blurt out something inane or insensitive. Yet this is the very time the grieving person needs words and/or actions of comfort. Father Leo Hofmann is sensitive to what not to say when someone has died, such as "God only takes the good ones." Or if a child dies, one shouldn't tell the parents, "'Oh, you are young. You can have another.' That is the most unfortunate thing. It's not like a litter of puppies.

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Aboriginal elders discuss indigenous Church

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November 17, 2014
PRAIRIE MESSENGER

SASKATOON – A group of about 40 Catholic elders recently gathered at Queen's House of Retreats for a dialogue to explore avenues leading to a more indigenous church. This dialogue was held under the auspices of the Standing Committee on Aboriginal Affairs of the Western Bishops. It is an initiative of the bishops' Building Bridges Project headed by Sister Eva Solomon, an Anishinabe from Winnipeg.

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Quebec Catholic schools died from loss of identity

Spencer Boudreau

November 17, 2014
EVAN BOUDREAU
THE CATHOLIC REGISTER

Ontario supporters of Catholic education should heed the lesson of Quebec before it's too late, said a former education professor and ombudsman at McGill University in Montreal. Spencer Boudreau said one reason for the collapse of Quebec's publicly funded Catholic education system in the 1990s was that Catholic schools "lost their identity." Speaking to about 150 Catholic educators at an Oct. 20 event at Msgr. Percy Johnson High School in Toronto, Boudreau said the loss of identity was due to the advent of an increasingly secularized society coupled with a push by Catholic schools to become overly accommodating.

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