Articles from December, 2016

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Of Holy Families, Peace and Good Will Toward Men


Today's feast of the Holy Family reminds us of the fundamental importance of this 'basic building block' of each and every society, not just Catholic ones.  Although Christian revelation and practice elevate and perfect the family unit, making it a true ecclesia domestica, a kind of domestic Church, there can be no society at all without the family even at a natural level:  Husband, wife and children. Any deviation from this ideal leads to some level of diminution in society, ... (Continue reading)

Of Silence, Saint Death and Saint John


Feel free to peruse an article I just finished on Shuasku Endo's controversial novel Silence, published in 1966, and now soon to be released as a major Hollywood production.  The book follows a Jesuit missionary, Sebastian Rodrigues, forced to choose between apostasy, and saving a whole group of people being tortured.  The tale analyzes the nature of  faith, evangelization and love.  The 'controversial' bit is that Endo seems to imply that apostasy can in fact be the deepest form ... (Continue reading)

A Chrismas Poem, by G.K. Cheserton


There fared a mother driven forth Out of an inn to roam; In the place where she was homeless All men are at home. The crazy stable close at hand, With shaking timber and shifting sand, Grew a stronger thing to abide and stand Than the square stones of Rome. For men are homesick in their homes, And strangers under the sun, And they lay their heads in a foreign land Whenever the day is done. Here we have battle and blazing eyes, And chance and honour and high surprise, But our homes are ... (Continue reading)

Pope John Paul II’s Final Christmas Address


For putting us spiritually into the Christmas spirit, here is the Pope Saint John Paul II's final Christmas address, from 2004, which seems now almost like another universe:  The world has changed, but also still much the same, and the words of the saintly Pope echo through time, unto eternity: 1. Christus natus est nobis, venite, adoremus! Christ is born for us: come, let us adore him! On this solemn day we come to you, tender Babe of Bethlehem. By your birth ... (Continue reading)

A very joyous, merry and grace-filled Christmas to all the faithful readers of Catholic Insight! Awake, awake, fling off the night! For God has sent His glorious light! And we who live in Christ's new day, Must deeds of darkness put away.  (Continue reading)

Christmas Terror


As a number of pundits have predicted, there was a terrorist attack in Berlin, at a Christmas festival, with a multi-ton 'lorry' smashing full speed into a stall selling mulled wine. Eleven people were killed by the truck, with scores wounded, some severely, and a twelfth victim, the operator of the truck, killed by an Islamic hijacker, who careened it into the market.   Just today, we heard that the alleged perpetrator was shot and killed by police in Milan, after ... (Continue reading)

A Personal Reflection on Truly Accompanying the Dying


(The following letter was sent to Catholic Insight in response to my brief posting on the letter of the Bishops of Atlantic Canada in response to the sacraments and the suicide-euthanasia law, euphemistically termed 'medical assistance in dying'.  Ms. Ackford has kindly agreed to have her letter posted in full, which helps put what this all means into a real, living context.  Accompanying people towards the end of their earthly journey, especially those whom we love most, is difficult, the ... (Continue reading)

More mayhem, alas, from the Muslim world, which is now in the heart of Europe.  A truck driven into a Christmas market in Germany, killing 12 and injuring 48; the Russian ambassador to Turkey shot in cold blood before a crowd at an art gallery, the gunman, a police officer, shouting Islamic slogans about Syria before being shot to death by his fellow officers; a shooting at an Islamic centre in Zurich. I don't agree with everything Mark Steyn says, but ... (Continue reading)

A Reflection for Christmas: God, Truth and Love


As Christmas rolls around this year, try not to be swept up with the hoopla of consumerism and economic materialism.  In our day and age, with the technology of smart phones, hi-speed internet, wi-fi access, iPads, new gaming systems, etc., it is easier than ever to get distracted from God, truth, and love. The significance of Christmas, irrespective of the historical origins of its celebration, is the idea that the Second Person of the Trinity invaded the space-time created order and ... (Continue reading)

Italian Marriage, Atlantic Bishops and Continuing Mayhem


From the extinction of marriage files:  Italy is considering officially removing the 'fidelity' aspect  in the promises of legal marriage; no longer will one have to be faithful to one's wife or husband (or, I suppose now, any significant 'partner'), and adultery, in its various manifestations, will no longer be grounds for divorce.  The Italian Senators argue that this a "cultural legacy from an outdated and obsolete view of marriage, family and the rights and duties of spouses,” according to ... (Continue reading)

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