Parish Blog

For discussion by parishioners of Our Lady of the Way Parishes, North Sydney.
Views expressed are not necessarily those of the Parish as a whole or of the Jesuit priests.
You will need to login (or click on Register) before creating a blog.
Because new blogs are monitored, they will not appear immediately.

"Dear Lord,
May we always be mindful of your teaching: Love God & love your neighbour."

National Catholic Reporter's Man of the Year

The National Catholic Reporter (USA) on 30 December 2014 announced that it had joined ( although a little later) Rolling Stone, Time Magazine, The New Yorker, and The Advocate in choosing Pope Franci as its Man of the Year.

In one sense, one is prompted to think that , as a prominent Catholic publication, such a nomonation is only to be expected. Niothing exceptional.

But this is a publication different to the others; its editors and journalists are experts on the Church and tend to be knowledgibly critcal of the Church. They are more expert in Church affairs than is the secular press.

...
Rate this blog entry:

Share this article:

Continue reading
1902 Hits
0 Comments

Donate, don't spend

I read the eloquent plea from Father Aloysious Mowe in last Sunday's parish bulletin "JRS urges generosity in the face of despair".

It is a little late for me to be suggesting we ignore the Federal Treasurer's plea to the Australian public to spend for Christmas and to not let Santa down.

But I will suggest that at least for the post Christmas and January period we ignore all the "Spend" pleas and instead donate to the JRS Shelter Project.

...
Rate this blog entry:

Share this article:

Continue reading
1605 Hits
0 Comments

SHOWING REAL LEADERSHIP

All of us, at times, have to deliver important and difficult messages to family and friends, those closest to us, colleagues and workmates, members of the same sporting team. Sometimes we know that the message will disappoint or cause hurt or even anger. It may permanently change a relationship.

Many people duck the responsibility; others wish that someone else would do it or they wish they could be somewhere else. They dont want the confrontation or the risk of losing a friend, being misunderstood or losing popularity.

The attached article shows a Pope who is remarkably brave in facing up to the challenge of delivering difficult messages. The difficulty is not so much in the subject matter of the message. It is more in the close proximity of the audience, their power and opportunity to make his life very hard and the need he has of their support in his wish to take the church back to Christ.

...
Rate this blog entry:

Share this article:

Continue reading
1910 Hits
0 Comments

Child Sexual Abuse Royal Commission

The TJ&H Council has published its Activity Report as at December 2014. The link is at: 

TJHC-Activity-Statement_FINAL-02-web-Medium.pdf

The Report is comprehensive, clear and refreshingly transparent. It shows that the Council is living up to its Terms of Reference.

...
Rate this blog entry:

Share this article:

Continue reading
1702 Hits
0 Comments

Six Characteristics of Ignatian Spirituality

Here is a link to George W Traub's description of the Ignatian/Jesuit vision:

Rate this blog entry:

Share this article:

1837 Hits
0 Comments

Victims and Martyrs

I have been thinking about two events in our Parish over the last month. Francis Sullivan from the Truth, Justice and Healing Council came to speak to us and hear from us about the Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse. Many parishioners turned up, asked questions and made statements as befits this terrible scandal in the life of our Church. Reconciliation may be under way but we have a long way to go.

One of the issues raised was how we, as the community of faith at Our Lady of the Way, can play a role in that reconciliation.

At about the same time, we were remembering the events of 25 years ago in El Salvador; six Jesuits, their housekeeper and her daughter murdered at the University of Central America.

...
Rate this blog entry:

Share this article:

Continue reading
1490 Hits
0 Comments

There are many reasons why I admire Pope Francis

There are many reasons why I admire Pope Francis. One is the clarity, the simplicity of his language.

In my life I have often found that if I could express my thoughts in a few simple words, I was better able to be sure of what i was saying and be more successful in my communication with others. Of course, it usually take much more time to reduce thoughts, ideas, concepts, submissions to a short statement composed of simple words and clear concepts, thus understood by more people. It's like the difference between a well prepared short homily and lengthy waffle which is boring, repetitiious and, ultimately, unconvincing.

But back to FI; here is a link to recent article about the messages which Pope Francis is inviting us to consider with him in Advent. There language is simple and the messages are short.

...
Rate this blog entry:

Share this article:

Continue reading
3047 Hits
0 Comments

Religious stereotypes

This is on the thread started by Father Aloysious Mowe :

and its continuation by Daniel Moszkowicz

Like Daniel, I have not found a way to enter a comment, so I am forced to create a new thread topic.

...
Rate this blog entry:

Share this article:

Continue reading
1856 Hits
2 Comments

Know your neighbour, love your neighbour.

Since I am unable to post my reply in Fr. Aloysious Mowe's blog titled, 'Do we see Australian Muslims as the Trojan Horse inside our walls?' -- I thought it might be best to begin a seperate post, even though it's a direct reply to elements of his thread in answering the question in his title.

Interesting post Fr. Mowe, I acknowledge you have taken the time from your busy schedule to raise this matter for consideration and comment. Whilst I know that computers exist and there is this thing called the internet where one can even go to seek out Muslims condemning violence and terror, I humbly believe you may be missing a critical point in your understanding of the matter. Indeed I can prove it.

I don't believe this is an issue about people finding satisfaction for themselves about the perception of Muslims in our society by hearing Muslims condemn violence and terror. It is a much deeper matter than that, I believe, and you touch on it when you provide us with the quote from the tumblr post: "[i]Lurking behind many demands for Muslims to condemn acts of terror committed by Muslims or done allegedly in the name of the Islamic faith: it is a fundamental distrust of the Islamic religion, and of all Muslims.[/i]" And then go on to ask the important question: "[i]Why are Australian Muslims expected to condemn Muslim extremists in the Middle East?[/i]"

...
Rate this blog entry:

Share this article:

Continue reading
1640 Hits
0 Comments

Pope calls for abolition of death penalty and life imprisonment

Read how Pope Francis is urging Christians to campaign for an end to capital punishment.

 

http://www.thetablet.co.uk/news/1316/0/pope-calls-for-abolition-of-death-penalty

...
Tags:
Rate this blog entry:

Share this article:

Continue reading
1824 Hits
0 Comments

Do we see Australian Muslims as the Trojan Horse inside our walls?

I was not expecting the Parish blog to have something of the nature of the "call and response" tradition of the African American gospel tradition, and I certainly was not planning ever to respond to a comment on any blog that I have posted here, mainly because I have such a busy schedule. However, Greg Bunbury's recent blog entry, in response to a blog that I posted a few weeks ago, raised such an important issue that I felt compelled to write again on this topic of so-called Muslim terror.

Mr Bunbury claims in his blog entry that “what seems to be absent, with some heroic exceptions, is the emphatic condemnation by Muslim communities of the fatal excesses of radicals, extremists, fundamentalists, murderers.  Among the exceptions were the two Muslim fathers, Dr Rifi and Mr Eloued…I believe round condemnation by Muslim communities of the barbarity of IS and their like, and of the exhortations to hatred here in Australia, would very positively fight the deplorable bigotry and racism which this article showcases.”

Mr Bunbury’s call for Muslims to condemn terrorism is a common one, often encountered whenever there is an outrage perpetrated by Boko Haram, the self-designated Islamic State, or al-Qaeda. Variations on Mr Bunbury’s call include, “Why do Muslim moderates not condemn violence done in the name of Islam?”, or “Where are the Muslim voices against terror?” and so on. We know the drill.

...
Rate this blog entry:

Share this article:

Continue reading
1978 Hits
0 Comments

Afflick role model

Of course, all Muslims are not radicals, extremists, fundamentalists, murderers, but what seems to be absent, with some heroic exceptions, is the emphatic condemnation by Muslim communities of the fatal excesses of radicals, extremists, fundamentalists, murderers.  Among the exceptions were the two Muslim fathers, Dr Rifi and Mr Eloued, if I remember their names correctly, who did courageously speak out, and received excellent press coverage, which certainly would have made them soft targets devoid of security for anyone inclined to take a shot at them. 

Without wishing to draw a parallel, I am reminded of the fact that all Germans were not members of the Gestapo, but with some heroic exceptions, Sophie Scholl and her brother, Bonhoeffer, Schleicher, von Dohnanyi, among others, the Germans were silent.

I believe round condemnation by Muslim communities of the barbarity of IS and their like, and of the exhortations to hatred here in Australia, would very positively fight the deplorable bigotry and racism which this article showcases.

...
Rate this blog entry:

Share this article:

Continue reading
1358 Hits
0 Comments

Ben Affleck as a role model

There is a scene in Mira Nair's film adaptation of The Reluctant Fundamentalist, Mohsin Hamid's 2007 novel, where its protagonist, Changez Khan, returns with a colleague to New York from a business trip abroad immediately after the attacks on the World Trade Centre. At customs, Changez, a Pakistani national who graduated from Princeton University and is now working for a prominent Wall Street firm, is stopped by airport security and subjected to a strip-search, despite the protests of his white American colleague. This is the first in a series of humiliations and false arrests for Changez in the wake of 9/11, and this believer in the American Dream is transformed from being a poster-boy for Ivy League education and global capitalism into a resentful scapegoat for American fears about Muslims and terrorism.

These last few weeks I have been wondering what it must feel like to be a Muslim, or even be vaguely "Middle Eastern" in appearance, in Australia. At the more risible end of the spectrum, calls for the banning of the burqa, either because certain politicians claim to find it "confronting", or because it is seen as a possible disguise for women (or men - for who would know?) intent on terrorist acts in Parliament House, dominated the headlines and editorial pages for several days.

What has been of more serious concern to me has been the way that social media has given a platform to people wishing to air, and, in doing so, spread their paranoia and fear about Muslims in the wake of the counter-terrorism raids in Sydney. A random selection of Twitter feeds, for example, yielded tweets ranging from the acerbically cynical ("So the peaceful Muslims were planning to behead a few Australians on Australian streets") to the violence-inciting ("Eradicate them! It's only a matter of time before these radical Muslims will behead an Australian!"

...
Rate this blog entry:

Share this article:

Continue reading
1567 Hits
0 Comments

Be careful of scapegoating Islam

 “... when you think about whatever is true, honourable, pure, pleasing, commendable and worthy of praise .... the God of peace will be with you.”

...
Rate this blog entry:

Share this article:

Continue reading
1547 Hits
0 Comments

Global Action on Climate Change

This link  provides a good summary of the climate rallies held across Australia today.  These rallies are happening across the globe over the weekend to encourage world leaders to take action on Climate Change.  

World leaders are currently assembling in New York for a Global Climate Summit.  Australia will be represented by Julie Bishop.

 

...
Tags:
Rate this blog entry:

Share this article:

Continue reading
2598 Hits
0 Comments

Margaret Whiting turns 90!

b2ap3_thumbnail_b2ap3_thumbnail_CreativeCamera_23_08_2014-6_11_54-PM_jpg.jpg

 

August 2014. This photo was taken at  Saturday night's vigil mass in SFX Church. The lady in the photo is Margaret Whiting - also a resident at Xavier Terrace.  She turned 90 on the Sunday. Congratulations Margaret!

...
Rate this blog entry:

Share this article:

Continue reading
1291 Hits
0 Comments

Pope Francis's Radical Environmentalism

Pope Francis's Radical Environmentalism

(Extracts from an Article first published in The Atlantic in July)

In a talk at the Italian university of Molise in July, Francis characterized concerns about the 

environment as “one of the greatest challenges of our time”—a challenge that is theological, 

...
Rate this blog entry:

Share this article:

Continue reading
1545 Hits
0 Comments

Eternity

ETERNITY

What is our idea of eternity? Does it matter?

 

...
Rate this blog entry:

Share this article:

Continue reading
1380 Hits
0 Comments

Links to religious stores

Where can I buy gifts for First Holy Communion or Confirmation?

Maybe you can put these links on the website?

Rate this blog entry:

Share this article:

1498 Hits
1 Comment

Who will stand up for the Christians in Syria?

Try this link for an interesting read - written by a rabbi.

Rate this blog entry:

Share this article:

1403 Hits
0 Comments