Sunday, July 28

Quite a marvelous piece in praise of the Holy Father from the Globe and Mail. I'll quote a bit of it, but you must read the whole thing: the final act of his life, he has given us an even more remarkable incarnation: the Suffering Pope. Arthritis, various operations and Parkinson's disease have transformed the vigorous man who visited Canada last in 1985 into a shuffling, quivering wreck. Parkinson's freezes the muscles, bends the back, stifles the voice and makes ordinary movements an exhausting battle. The strength of will it must take to travel all this way and then deliver an address to a throng in the summer heat is unimaginable. Yet he does it, and with joy. His disease has made his face, once so expressive, into an impassive mask, but when he faced a roaring crowd of 300,000 on the Toronto waterfront this week, he smiled several times. Those smiles brought tears to many who saw them; he so plainly wanted to be there, spending the last measures of his failing strength to inspire others.

A lovely piece from the WaPo on the Stations of the Cross on Friday in Toronto and the vigil on Saturday.

A massive prayer swept down one of Toronto's busiest streets Friday night, echoing off buildings, as more than 500,000 people whispered Hail Marys in unison and watched a reenactment of the final hours of the life of Christ. "Jesus Christ, you fall under the weight of human sin and you get up again in order to take it upon yourself and cancel it," the crowd chanted. "Give to us, weak men and women, the strength to carry the cross of daily life and to get up again from our falls." Some people knelt on the sidewalks, others gathered in groups, some stood still as they watched the dramatization of the Way of the Cross, which describes the events that led to Jesus's final suffering and death. John Paul II, who was an actor and playwright before he became pope in 1978, wrote the text of this reenactment.

From the Hartford Courant, Jason Berry and Gerald Renner restate the charges against Legion of Christ founder Father Marcial Maciel Degollado and wonder if Maciel will be at the Pope's side in Mexico.

Save your pixels. For equal time, here's Fr. Neuhaus' defense of Maciel from the March First Things. Scroll down to "Feathers of Scandal" to read it.

London monastery deemed a world masterpiece re-opened to public.

Ten years after it was left to vandals and the elements, a Catholic monastery in Manchester opened its doors again yesterday to reveal why its neglect has been one of Britain's architectural tragedies.The colossal Monastery of St Francis was built by Edward Welby Pugin, son of Augustus, the creator of the Houses of Parliament's intricate fa├žade and interior. Marked out by its distinctive green bell turret, it was the spiritual home for its inner-city flock for more than 100 years after its consecration in 1872 at Gorton, east Manchester. But its congregation disappeared with the slum clearances and after the Franciscan friars left in 1989, its redbrick and stone splendour fell into ruin. It was about to be converted into flats, while pews, crucifixes and even doors had been sold by developers, when the World Monuments Fund named it as one of the world's 100 most important endangered buildings five years ago. ...The building is still majestic, despite missing statues and 19th century wall paintings, scrubbed away by volunteers who thought the building needed a good clean.

Bulletin notice of the day:

A local radio station is going to start broadcasting the Catholic Answers Live radio program, the apologetics call-in apostolate of Catholic Answers, naturally. A notice of the broadcast appeared in today's parish bulletin, noting that the Bishop had given permission for the program to air, but also that

...the views of "Catholic Answers Live" do not necessarily reflect the views of the Diocese of Fort-Wayne- South Bend.

I'd be fascinated to find out what those disputed views might be, exactly.

News photos of today's Mass
Next stop: Guatemala
Kathy Shaidle has some good links to WYD commentary over Relapsed Catholic way
Three priests of China's underground church reportedly sent to labor camp.
Pope calls on young to keep hope.

In his homily, he also jokingly referred to his age, saying: "You are young and the pope is old and a bit tired. Being 80 or 82 is not the same as 22 or 23, but he still fully identifies with your hopes and aspirations." The pope, who lived through the horrors of World War II, Nazi occupation of his native Poland and later Communist prosecution, told the young people not to be discouraged by life's ups and downs. "Although I have lived through much darkness, under harsh totalitarian regimes, I have seen enough evidence to be unshakably convinced that no difficulty, no fear is so great that it can completely suffocate the hope that springs eternal in the hearts of the young. Do not let that hope die."

Next WYD to be in Cologne, Germany
From the Dallas newspaper: (LRR) Diocese of Tulsa did nothing about priest who had been caught in odd situations with boys:

We need to be ultrasafe – to have zero tolerance – in order to protect children," Bishop Edward Slattery told the Tulsa World in March. Privately, however, he was keeping on the job a pastor who had been accused of inappropriate behavior with several boys, sent to a treatment center in 1994 and then moved to new parishes. He kept the Rev. Kenneth Lewis on the job until last weekend, despite new allegations of early-1990s misconduct and the vote by U.S. bishops last month to crack down further on abuse.

Other Catholic news from Canada:

Two New Jersey Catholic priests nabbed for picking up prostitutes in Montreal

- Two New Jersey priests, including the former head of a Catholic high school for boys, were arrested in Montreal on charges of soliciting sex from minors, a spokesman for the Archdiocese of Newark said.
The Rev. William Giblin, 70, and the Rev. Eugene Heyndricks, 60, were caught in a police sting operation Wednesday, archdiocese spokesman James Goodness told The Star-Ledger of Newark in Saturday's editions. The arrests were connected to the breakup of a prostitution ring that employed boys as young as 14. Giblin, ordained in 1959, served as headmaster of Seton Hall Prep, run by the archdiocese, until the 1980s. He retired last year, Goodness said. Heyndricks, ordained in 1981, served until this week at St. John Nepomucene in Guttenberg, a post he held since November 2001


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