Wednesday, April 30, 2008

A Life Time Of Achievements

Fr. Paul McNellis, S.J.
A reader let me know about Fr. Paul McNellis, S.J. who was a Green Beret in Vietnam, an AP freelancer there, refugee worker on the Cambodian frontier during the Killing Fields, Jesuit priest, and philosophy professor at Boston College. He is also totally faithful to the Church and yesterday he was award the Mary Kaye Waldron Award at BC which is the highest honor students can bestow on a teacher.
Here is a video tribute his students have made to honor him.
Hat Tip to Karen and Joe at Some Wear Clerics
and Jeff Miller at the Curt Jestor

Jesuit's Invented Tempura? Come On!

Tempura holds a bit of Japanese history

Apr. 30, 2008
Tempura embodies qualities Japanese cooks hold dear: fresh ingredients, precision cooking and beautiful presentation. It also exemplifies the uncanny ability of the Japanese to absorb outside influences -- in this case, from the Iberian peninsula -- and mold them into new constructs that are very much their own.
The idea of frying fish and seafood in a light batter came to Japan with Jesuit missionaries in the 16th century. These learned and zealous men were the evangelical arm of the Portuguese crown in Asia.
They arrived in Japan in 1549 following the wreck of a Portuguese ship along the coast of Kyushu, Japan's most southwesterly island.
Led at first by Francis Xavier, who was born in Navarre, Spain, the Jesuits gained Japanese converts to Christianity even in the upper echelons of the nobility (daimyo) and the samurai warrior class.
They also managed to secure a stronghold in Nagasaki, which became the hub of Japanese trade with Portugal. Naturally, as the Jesuits came into contact with all levels of Japanese society, their influence extended beyond religion to other aspects of Western culture such as technology and science and even cooking. In the book Japan: Its History and Culture (MacGraw-Hill, 2005), historian W. Scott Morton writes that by 1569, there were about 300,000 Christian converts in Japan and that linguistic borrowings from this period include the Portuguese words for bread (pan, from the Portuguese pao) and tempura ``for fried shrimp in batter, derived from the fact that on Ember Days, quattour tempora [days of fasting and abstinence], the Jesuit fathers ate only seafood.''
Japanese rulers began issuing edicts banning Christianity as early as 1587, and soon the Jesuits, along with all the Portuguese, were expelled, effectively closing Japan to the outside world until the 1850s.
Nonetheless, Portuguese culinary borrowings like tempura became embedded in Japanese popular cooking. By the 18th century, tempura had become a popular street food all over Japan, often sold from wheeled carts. The idea was to eat the fritters as soon as they were fried -- the kind of freshness and immediacy diners still find today in Japanese tempura restaurants, where the cook working across the counter places the crispy morsels on your plate as soon as he pulls them from the hot oil. Batter-fried seafood is common in Portugal, Spain and all over Latin America, but our coatings are never as crisp and lacy as in tempura. In fact, Cuban foods (mostly fish or vegetable like eggplant) that are rebozadas (batter-fried) are meant to have a spongy crust. One of the keys to the Japanese method is careful calibration of the batter ingredients.
You can find tempura batter flour in Japanese markets that contains dehydrated egg yolks, carotene coloring and baking powder, but I much prefer making my own mix with fresh eggs and a low-gluten cake flour. Though I am partial to shrimp tempura, squid, eel, king crab and even sea urchin roe (uni) lend themselves beautifully to this cooking method.
Small Japanese eggplant (usually cut in a fan shape) and thinly sliced starchy vegetables like kabocha squash, yams and boniato (white sweet potato) are also delicious tempura style. Like the cameras and luxury cars that have become a hallmark of Japanese technological sophistication, tempura is the result of felicitous borrowing coupled with ingenuity and meticulous attention to detail.

Link (here)

Iraqi Leader Was Jesuit Educated In Baghdad, At Baghdad College

The following are excerpts from the book Soldiers of Reason:
Back when neoconservatives ruled Washington (was it really just five years ago?), some conservative observers compared the controversial Iraqi banker-politician Ahmed Chalabi to George Washington. As head of the largest Iraqi exile group, The Iraqi National Congress, he had convinced the Bush administration that invading Iraq would be a cakewalk, that invading Americans would be greeted as liberators, not conquerors. Under Secretary of Defense Douglas Feith, former Assistant Secretary of Defense Richard Perle, Vice President Dick Cheney, President Bush, all saw Chalabi as the man who would be hailed as the founding father of his country.....

The scion of an ancient Iraqi family, Chalabi was a precocious child, regularly skipping grades in the Jesuit school (Baghdad College) he attended in central Baghdad. After King Faisal II was assassinated and his government deposed in 1958, Chalabi's family fled Iraq, losing most of its fortune. Chalabi, then twelve years old, went to boarding school in England.

He finished his studies in America, earning undergraduate and master's degrees in mathematics from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. He also earned a Ph.D. in mathematics at the University of Chicago at the same time Wohlstetter was teaching there, although according to Chalabi they did not meet then. In 1977, at the invitation of Crown Prince Hassan of Jordan, Chalabi moved to Amman; there he founded the Petra Bank, which soon became the country's second-largest financial institution. He befriended the royal family of the small (interesting) Hashemite kingdom; he lived in an opulent villa filled with modern art, and his children rode horses with the king's family. The pain of exile was mitigated by his growing wealth, yet by 1989 Chalabi was fleeing Jordan to London with his wife and four children, accused of causing the collapse of his own bank. In 1992 a Jordanian court found him guilty in absentia of thirty-one charges, including embezzlement, forgery, and theft; it sentenced him to twenty-two years of hard labor and ordered restitution of $70 million.

Picture is of King Fiasal II visiting Baghdad College

Tuesday, April 29, 2008

Georgetown's “Intellectual Charity", Intriguing

Pope Addresses Catholic Educators
Officials Say Georgetown Mission of Interreligious Dialogue, Catholic Identity Falls In Line With Message of 'Intellectual Charity'
Pope Benedict XVI called on U.S. Catholic university presidents and educators to “recognize that the profound responsibility to lead the young to truth is nothing less than an act of love” during a private gathering on April 17. This is “intellectual charity,” Benedict said as he reiterated the importance of Catholic schools and expressed gratitude for educators.

These words have rippled across Georgetown administrators and provided strong encouragement for the work the university undertakes, according to senior university leaders. President John J. DeGioia, who attended the meeting, said Benedict’s words showed a “deep resonance with the values that are informing us.”

The notion of intellectual charity struck him as a poignant way of thinking about interpersonal interactions at every level of the university.

Also intrigued by the idea of intellectual charity, the Rev. Philip Boroughs, S.J., vice president for mission and ministry, said he felt prompted to consider how that “act of love” plays out at Georgetown. “This visit to the United States and the very presence of the Holy Father compels us to reflect on what it means to be Catholic and what it means to be a Catholic university,” he said.

The pontiff touched upon several key areas of Georgetown’s mission: creating students of faith, respecting academic freedom and discourse, service to the poor and making a Catholic education affordable to all who seek it.

Link to the full article (here)

Taking Aim At Liberation Theology

The recent election of former Bishop Fernando Lugo as President of Paraguay poses a sticky dilemma for the Vatican and underscores the hostile political environment facing incoming Pope Benedict XVI in South America. Lugo, who was known to his constituents as the “Bishop of the Poor” for his support of landless peasants, advocates so-called Liberation Theology, a school of thought which took shape in Latin America in the 1960s. Recognizing the pressing need for social justice, Liberation Theology was minted by Pope John XXIII to challenge the Church to defend the oppressed and the poor.

Since its emergence, Liberation Theology has consistently mixed politics and religion. Its adherents have often been active in labor unions and left-wing political parties. Followers of Liberation Theology take inspiration from fallen martyrs like Archbishop Oscar Romero of El Salvador and Dorothy Mae Stang, an American-born nun who was murdered by ranching interests in Brazil.

Romero, an outspoken voice for social change, was gunned down in 1980 by a right wing death squad during a Mass in the chapel of San Salvador’s Divine Providence hospital. Stang, an advocate of the poor and the environment, was shot to death in the Brazilian Amazon in February 2005; her assailants were later linked to a powerful local landlord.

Joseph Ratzinger: Doctrinal Czar
During the 1980s and 1990s Benedict, then Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger, acted as John Paul II’s doctrinal czar. At the time, John Paul was in the midst of a fierce battle to silence prominent Church liberals. “This conception of Christ as a political figure, a revolutionary, as the subversive of Nazareth,” the Pontiff once said, “does not tally with the church’s catechism.” In 1983 the Pope wagged his finger at Sandinista government minister and Nicaraguan priest, Ernesto Cardenal on a trip to Managua, warning the latter to “straighten out the situation in your church.” Cardenal was one of the most prominent Liberation Theologians of the Sandinista era. Originally a liberal reformer, Ratzinger changed his tune once he became an integrant in the Vatican hierarchy.

As prefect of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, the Vatican’s doctrinal watchdog agency, Cardinal Ratzinger warned against the temptation to view Christianity in an exclusively political light. Liberation Theology, he once said, was dangerous as it fused “the Bible’s view of history with Marxist dialectics.” Calling Liberation Theology a “singular heresy,” Ratzinger went on the offensive. He blasted the new movement as a “fundamental threat” to the church and prohibited some of its leading proponents from speaking publicly.

In an effort to clean house, Ratzinger even summoned outspoken priests to Rome and censured them on grounds that they were abandoning the church’s spiritual role for inappropriate socioeconomic activism. As Pope, Ratzinger has not sought to hide his lack of esteem for Liberation Theology. During a recent trip to Brazil, he was pressed by reporters to comment on Oscar Romero’s tragic murder in El Salvador. The Pope complained that Romero’s cause had been hijacked by supporters of liberation theology. Commenting on a new book about the slain archbishop, the Pope said that Romero should not be seen simply as a political figure. Hoping to avoid any meaningful political discussion on the matter, Benedict said “He was killed during the consecration of the Eucharist. Therefore, his death is testimony of the faith.”

Link to the full article (here)

Personal Conversion Not Enough For Irish Jesuit

Jesus: Social Revolutionary?
Jesuit priest and leading social justice campaigner, Fr Peter McVerry, has called on the Christian churches to look afresh at the social implications of the life and message of Jesus. Speaking at the launch of his new book: Jesus: Social Revolutionary?

Fr McVerry said: "For me, the life and work of Jesus should mean that a huge commitment to social justice should be at the heart of all the Christian churches preach and do. However, it appears to me that the Churches' emphasis on personal conversion fails to go beyond the personal, to emphasise the radical economic, social and political consequences of such conversion."

Explaining the background to the book,

Fr McVerry said: "I decided to write this book because for me the gospels are extraordinarily radical. The Jesus I find there is an extremely attractive person but he is hard-hitting, pulls no punches. Jesus was scathing of the inequalities which existed in the society of his own time and was very critical of the way the weak and vulnerable were regarded and treated by his society. His vision for a society of equality and inclusiveness is hugely relevant for Irish society, and for societies of every time and place."

The book was launched jointly in Dublin by Bishop Willie Walsh, and broadcaster and journalist, Vincent Browne. Speaking at the launch, Mr Browne said: "This is a different and interesting account of Jesus and the Jesus Story." The Jesuit Centre for Faith and Justice, where Fr McVerry is based, has established a special website to allow readers of the book share their reactions with the author and with one another. The website also contains extracts from the book and interviews with Fr McVerry. See Jesus: Social Revolutionary? is published by Veritas. Peter McVerry is a Jesuit priest who has spent many years working with homeless young people. In 1979 he set up a hostel for homeless boys. Four years later he established the Arrupe Society, now known as the Peter McVerry Trust, to provide accommodation and support for young people. Based at the Jesuit Centre for Faith and Justice in Upper Sherrard Street, Dublin, Peter's work with and campaigning on behalf of troubled young people has made him one of the most prophetic voices in Ireland today.

Monday, April 28, 2008

Jesuit Says That Benedict XVI Is, "Awe-Inspiring"

Jesuit Joe wrote in his blog The City and the World.

I never got a chance to see the last pope, but I can now say that I've seen the present one. On Saturday, I joined a number of other scholastics from Ciszek Hall, Jesuit novices from Syracuse, and roughly thirty thousand young people (including about five thousand seminarians and religious) at St. Joseph's Seminary in Yonkers, New York to greet the Holy Father. Though exhilarating, the event was also fairly exhausting - as any event that involves standing for hours in a dusty, unshaded field on a hot day probably would be. The demands of security as well as the practical logistics involved in gathering such a large crowd meant that everyone had to be in place hours before the Pope's actual arrival. During the wait, the assembled multitude listened to performances by various musicians (Kelly Clarkson was the only one that I'd previously heard of) and got to wait in long lines to get lunch (outside food being prohibited).

At around five o' clock - four hours after the scholastics from Fordham had arrived - the Holy Father finally appeared on the field. It's hard for me to think of appropriate words to describe my impressions of the Pope, though "awe-inspiring" would be a good start. What impressed me the most about Pope Benedict XVI in person were two qualities that I'd noticed before in reading things written by or about the present pontiff: his evident humility and great sincerity.
There's something disarming - and, in a way, refreshing - about this soft-spoken pope who seems more at home in the study than in the pulpit, a theologian who is firm in his beliefs but who can nonetheless listen respectfully to the opinions of others, a teacher who still enjoys meeting with former students to discuss their latest discoveries, a classical pianist who loves cats (and who apparently used to adopt strays off the streets of Rome, until his staff begged him to stop).
Read Jesuit Joe's clear and well written post, that is akin to a passage written into his own personal journal (here).

A Jesuit And The Leviathans

Whales appear to be making a comeback in the waters where they were once hunted to near extinction.
By Patrick J. McDonnell, Los Angeles Times Staff Writer April 28, 2008
STRAIT OF MAGELLAN, CHILE -- From the earliest days of exploration, mariners in Chile's cool southern waters marveled at the abundance of whales.

A Jesuit naturalist wrote of the sea "boiling" with the spouts of the leviathans. Among 19th century Nantucket boatmen, the island of Mocha was notorious as the stamping grounds of "Mocha Dick," an ill-tempered sperm whale riddled with harpoons.

Why Herman Melville opted to substitute "Moby" for "Mocha" remains unclear, but literary detectives believe the vengeful whale helped inspire his dark classic. Now, almost two centuries after the commercial carnage of Melville's era and 22 years after an international whale-hunting moratorium went into effect, some whales appear to be making a comeback off Chile's coast, where a proliferation of islands, fiords, peninsulas and straits creates tens of thousands of miles of shoreline.

Link to the full article (here)

Sunday, April 27, 2008

Jesuit Is Keynote Speaker At San Jose Dissidentfest

“Irreconcilable with the Catholic Faith”
Call to Action holding 3-day dissidentfest in San Jose
Call to Action, the dissident Catholic group described by Cardinal Giovanni Battista Re as “causing damage to the Church of Christ,” began a three-day regional conference this morning in San Jose. Call to Action dissents from Church teaching on, among other things, homosexuality, women’s ordination, priestly celibacy, and contraception. The “10th Annual West Coast Regional Call to Action Conference,” with the theme “Rebuild My Church – Responding Creatively to Injustice,” is being held at the Wyndham Hotel. It is scheduled to conclude on Sunday, April 27.

According to a program announcement, the conference will feature various dissidents from Church teaching, including several so-called “women priests.” Victoria Rue, Juanita Cordero, Kathleen Kunster and Jane Via – who claim to be “women priests” -- are scheduled to conduct a workshop entitled “Women Priests at the Grassroots.” Fr. Brian Joyce, pastor of Christ the King parish in Pleasant Hill (Oakland diocese), is another of several scheduled speakers.

His talk will cover “Concrete Examples for Rebuilding a Parish -- How the vision of Vatican II can be explored and implemented in today's parish using sound theory and concrete examples.” Fr. Joyce became notorious in 2002 when someone videotaped a “Clown Mass” he was celebrating at his parish. The video has since been posted on YouTube and can be viewed at Rob Grant, described in the program announcement as “a driving force in the Bay Area liturgical scene,” will lead a workshop on “Why the Church has a Problem with Progressives.” The program announcement describes the workshop this way: “Why on earth would an otherwise intelligent institution be so wary of concepts as seemingly benign as women priests? Inclusive language? Collaborative leadership? Knowing the paradigms, assumptions and fears from which a person or a group operates is the first step to conversation and true engagement.”

Listed as “keynotes” are Fr. John Dear, who, says the program announcement, is “a Jesuit priest, peace activist, lecturer, and writer of approximately twenty books on nonviolence. In the course of his civil disobedience against war, he has been arrested more than 75 times;”

retired Bishop Remi De Roo, who, as a result of his participation in Vatican II “came to see how creative and life-giving these internal ecclesial tensions could become and grew to welcome the healthy diversity that is innate to authentic catholicity;” and Leo Keegan, who “has been working in area of liturgical renewal for over 25 years as consultant for parish, diocesan and National Conferences specializing in initiation rites, liturgical arts and ministry formation.”

In March 1996, Bishop Fabian Bruskewitz excommunicated all Catholics in the Diocese of Lincoln, Nebraska, who were members of Call to Action (along with members or supporters of Catholics for a Free Choice, Planned Parenthood, the Hemlock Society, the Freemasons, and the Society of St. Pius X).

Call to Action’s Nebraska chapter appealed their excommunication to the Vatican. In December 2006, Cardinal Giovanni Battista Re, prefect of the Congregation for Bishops, wrote to Bishop Bruskewitz that the Vatican was upholding his decision. “The activities of ‘Call to Action’ in the course of these years are in contrast with the Catholic Faith due to views and positions held which are unacceptable from a doctrinal and disciplinary standpoint,” wrote Cardinal Re. “Thus to be a member of this Association or to support it, is irreconcilable with a coherent living of the Catholic Faith.”

Link (here)

Saturday, April 26, 2008

Spanish Jesuit Martyr Built First Church In Guam, 350 Years Ago

'A Golden Harvest' - A Documentary About 300 Years Of Catholicism On Guam,

It's premiere week for 'A Golden Harvest: 50 Years of Grace, Joy & Gratitude,' a made-for-TV documentary that records and interprets the often complex, but ultimately inspirational story of Guam’s Catholic faith. FOX-6 presents this two-part, 60-minute documentary produced by Lotus Media Services about Guam’s most enduring and populated religious tradition -- just in time for the 50th Jubilee of the Dulce Nombre de Maria Cathedral-Basilica, the spiritual home of Guam’s Catholic faithful. FOX-6 is airing the show at 7:30pm and 10pm Mondays through Saturdays, and at 7pm on Sundays. Part I (30 minutes) and Part II (30 minutes) will air in rotation. “This jubilee commemorates 50th celebration of the life of the Dulce Nombre de Maria Cathedral-Basilica we know today, and the wondrous 339th anniversary of our faith. We are truly a people blessed,” said His Excellency Anthony S. Apuron, Metropolitan Archbishop of Agana. “God gives us the gift of his grace, so that with unspeakable joy, our gratitude may reach to the ends of the earth and touch the hearts of all humankind.” While surveying the Church’s three-century history in the Mariana Islands, executive producers Angela Blardony Ureta and Sharla Torre Montvel-Cohen also grapple with its relevance in the modern world. Ureta, a Filipina lay Carmelite from Manila, Philippines, and Montvel-Cohen, a self-described Catholic Chamorro educated at Guam’s Catholic schools, speak with the Church’s chief pastor, Archbishop Anthony Apuron; its youngest rector for the Agana Cathedral-Basilica, Monsignor James L.G. Benavente; Chamorro historian and cultural scholar, Dr. Robert Underwood; retired federal judge Cristobal C. Duenas, and others whose lives have been shaped by the Church on Guam. Ureta and Montvel-Cohen are at once probing and reverent as they pursue: questions of faith, an understanding of the confluence of Chamorro culture and Catholic tradition, and the relevance of religion in a secular society.
It has been nearly 340 years since Spanish Jesuit Diego Luis de San Vitores (Venerable) erected the first church on land donated by the legendary Chamorro Chief Quipuha.

In pursuing the duality between native identity and religious tradition, an unmistakable theme emerges: the two are intertwined.

“The Church has always been at the forefront of the preservation of language and of culture – we pray the liturgy in Chamorro, we’ve translated the New Testament in Chamorro, we’ve grown up in the techa tradition learning and reciting Chamorro prayers, and today, our Cathedral-Basilica is home to Camp Hurao, where children are learning Chamorro language, prayers, arts and traditions,”
says Reverend Monsignor James L.G. Benavente, rector of the Dulce Nombre de Maria Cathedral-Basilica.Dr. Robert Underwood, bilingual education advocate and University of Guam President adds: “It’s hard to pull apart the meaning of Chamorro identity and the meaning of being Catholic. At this point in time…all major events are demarcated by sacraments. All major social events have to begin with some kind of prayer or blessing from the Catholic Church.” This History Channel-like, docutainment-style TV program balances over three centuries of historical fact with the complex and contemporary web of feelings aroused by the Catholic Church around personal faith, cultural heritage, and the institution of religion. It triumphs as a story about how the Catholic Church remains connected to the daily lives of the faithful on Guam – how it enriches relationships between diverse cultures; how it reaches out to all regardless of age, gender or stature; how it speaks boldly in addressing social issues that challenge the ideal of being Christ-like in the modern world. “This project has been rewarding and eye-opening for our team,” said Evan M. Cohen, managing director Lotus Media Services, who, along with Carl (Tommy) Gutierrez II, created the show.

“The more deeply we engaged the subject, the more we came to see the Catholic Church on Guam as more forward-thinking and vibrant than we imagined. Its leaders embrace the modern world and a youthful perspective, while remaining firmly planted in moral living and respect for tradition, culture and humanity. It’s a journey to awareness and appreciation that Lotus Media Services is proud to bring to our fellow Guamanians.”
“Sorensen Media Group is proud to present this excellent programming to the viewing public,” concluded Rex Sorensen, chairman and CEO of Sorensen Media Group. “We want to thank Archbishop Anthony Apuron and Monsignor James Benavente for sharing Catholicism’s rich and textured story.”
Link (here)

Jesuits, Fordham, ROTC And The .22 Caliber Rifle Team

ROTC at Fordham: A Look Back
Daniel J. Sullivan, S.J., Ph.D.Professor of Biology, Department of Biological SciencesArmy ROTC: An Attractive Elective for Freshmen
Sixty-two years ago in 1946, as a D-train commuter from Queens, I arrived at Fordham’s Rose Hill campus on a four-year academic scholarship to begin my freshman year as a biology major and pre-medical student. Over the next four years, Fordham offered me not only the standard “core courses” that included the sciences, literature, history, languages, theology and philosophy, but extracurricular activities as well.
They included sports (the .22 caliber rifle team) and electives such as the Army Reserve Officer Training Corps (ROTC) that students can voluntarily join, as I did, for patriotic, financial and career motives.
The ROTC in the United States began with the Morrill Act of 1862, which established the land-grant colleges. Part of the federal government’s requirement for these institutions was that they include military studies as a commissioning program. The ROTC program focuses on leadership development, problem solving, strategic planning and professional ethics.
The ROTC produces 56 percent of the officers in the Army, including six chiefs of staff (including Colin Powell), and Fordham’s own four-star general, John M. Keane (Class of 1966). We are good friends, and I nominated him for the honorary degree that he received at Fordham’s commencement in 2000.
In 1946, Fordham had about 1,000 cadets in the Army ROTC because many new students were veterans who had served in World War II. The G.I. Bill of Rights gave them the opportunity to go to college, and many joined the ROTC. Fordham has had the ROTC for 82 years, and besides studying the history of the Army, courses include military operations and tactics, theoretical and field experience, weapons familiarity and use, command and staff functions, computer science, domestic and international military law and ethics, and a field-oriented summer camp.
60 Years of Fordham’s Pershing Rifles: 1948-2008In the spring of 1948, one of my ROTC classmates, Francis Cunnion, organized 20 of us into the Fordham University chapter of the Pershing Rifles National Military Society. I had never heard of it, but we soon learned more. In spite of the name Pershing Rifles, it has nothing to do with Fordham’s .22 caliber rifle team, which I had joined as a freshman, and earned my varsity “Block F” letter.
In 1886, a young cadet named John Pershing graduated from the United States Military Academy at West Point. One of his earliest assignments as a second lieutenant was to be a professor of military science at the University of Nebraska.Pershing wanted to improve the morale and discipline of the Army battalion there, so in 1893 he hand-picked an elite group of cadets and called them the Varsity Rifles. They won honors as a precision drill team, and represented the Nebraska Battalion in military ceremonies. When John Pershing moved to another assignment, the ROTC cadets renamed their unit the “Pershing Rifles.” Pershing had a distinguished military career, serving in the Spanish-American War, the Philippines Insurrection, the Mexican Expedition and World War I, where he became the overall American commander in Europe as “General of the Armies.”
This April, Fordham is celebrating the 60th anniversary or “Diamond Jubilee” of the Pershing Rifles National Military Society called Company Delta-8. We had our military ball in the Officers’ Club at West Point to honor the occasion. Fordham’s Pershing Rifles continues the tradition of being a precision drill team, representing the University in parades, ceremonies and field training events.
Air Force ROTC for my Junior and Senior years When looking at movies about World War II that show fighter planes and bombers, we may forget that they were part of the Army Air Corps. But when the war ended, the Air Corps wanted to separate from the Army and become an independent unit. This was done in 1947 with the beginning of the Air Force.Then in 1948, this Air Force visited universities and colleges with Army ROTC programs and recruited some of the cadets in the Army ROTC to transfer to the new Air Force ROTC. This I did with some others cadets, so that for my junior and senior years at Fordham I was enrolled in the Air Force ROTC. For the summer camp between our junior and senior years, we were sent to Stewart Air Force Base in Newburgh, N.Y. where we met many Air Force ROTC cadets from other universities and colleges. So it was a memorable summer experience for all of us.
1950 Graduation – Turning Point in my Life Several wonderful things happened to me when I graduated from Fordham in 1950. I received my bachelor’s degree in biology cum laude; I was accepted into Georgetown University Medical School; I was commissioned a second lieutenant in the Air Force Reserves and I decided to enter the Jesuits. I have been a happy member of the Society of Jesus for 58 years, and a professor in Fordham’s Department of Biological Sciences for almost 40 years.
I am also privileged to be the chaplain for the Fordham ROTC and the Pershing Rifles.As a Christian, a Catholic, and a Jesuit priest, I know that war, the military and even the ROTC are contentious topics. Certainly, the conscience of pacificists and conscientious objectors must be respected. But, similar respect also should be shown to those who follow their own consciences and support the “just war theory” in certain circumstances—with its corollary of defensive preparedness by training officers for the military, as is done in the ROTC.
Link (here)

Jesuit To Speak At Lecture

Theologian will speak May 23 in Bernardin lunch, lecture series
Saturday, April 26, 2008
VILLA MARIA, Pa. — The Rev. Howard Gray will explore the topic “The Life of the Spirit” at the annual Bernardin lunch and lecture series scheduled from noon to 3 p.m. May 23 at Villa Maria Education and Spirituality Center. The center honors the memory of the late Cardinal Joseph Bernardin and his Catholic Common Ground Project by offering this annual lecture on a current theme. Father Gray is a noted theologian, author and lecturer.
He was provincial for the Detroit Province from 1983-89 and executive director of the Detroit Province Spirituality Team from 1991-95. From 1977-83, Father Gray was an associate professor of spiritual theology at Weston School of Theology, where he also served as dean from 1982-83 and was an adjunct professor in Spiritual Theology at the Jesuit School of Theology in Berkeley, Calif. During his time at Weston, he lectured occasionally at Boston College. He also has taught at Fordham and John Carroll universities, Loyola University of New Orleans and the University of Detroit Mercy. Father Gray is special assistant to the president of Georgetown University in Washington, D.C.
The $40 fee for the lecture includes registration and lunch. There is a student discount rate of $35. Registration deadline is Friday. Send registration fee to Cindy Wilpula P.O. Box 424 Villa Maria, Pa. 16155. For information, call (724) 964-8920, ext. 3241, or send e-mail to The Diocese of Youngstown will grant two hours toward religious education credits for anyone who attends the Bernardin lecture. The certificates will be available that day.

Link (here)

Friday, April 25, 2008

Traditional Latin Rite Confirmations In Great Britian

Westminster bishop to confer Traditional Latin Rite confirmations
An excerpt.
Bishop George Stack, auxiliary bishop in Westminster, will administer Confirmations in the Traditional Latin Rite at St James’s Church, Spanish Place, London W1 on Saturday, 15 November at 11.00 am at the request of Cardinal Cormac Murphy-O’Connor, Archbishop of Westminster.
This will be the fifth consecutive year that Westminster auxiliary bishops will have conferred Confirmation in the Traditional Rite. Last year in November 2007, a record 54 candidates received the sacrament at the hands of Bishop John Arnold – 50 children and 4 adults.
Also in November 2007, Bishop Peter Doyle of Northampton became the first diocesan bishop of England and Wales to administer Traditional Rite Confirmations when he confirmed 7 candidates during a pastoral visit to Our Lady of Perpetual Succour Church, Chesham Bois, Bucks on Sunday 18 November 2007. Bishop Doyle also celebrated Sunday Mass in the Traditional Rite on that occasion. John Medlin, General Manager of the Latin Mass Society, said, “There is no sign of slackening of demand for Traditional Rite Confirmations – in fact the opposite. The numbers are increasing every year and I expect this trend to continue after Pope Benedict’s Motu Proprio. We hope it will not be long before bishops all over England and Wales respond to pastoral demand for Mass and the Sacraments in the Traditional Rite. Those attached to the Extraordinary Form of the Roman Rite are very grateful to Cardinal Cormac and the Westminster auxiliary bishops for making provision for the Traditional Mass and Sacraments.”

Read the full press release (here) A Hat Tip to Fr, Ray Blake at St Mary Magdalene blog (here)

Jesuit Loves The Holy Father! But For How Long?

Impact of pope's visit goes beyond his six-day stay, say observers
04-25-2008 By Carol Zimmermann
When Pope Benedict XVI left New York April 20 after his six-day visit to the United States, Catholics were catching their breath from the whirlwind tour and many were trying to figure out what kind of impact the visit would leave in its wake. The trip -- anticipated since last November -- prompted a fair amount of guesswork about what the pontiff would and wouldn't say. Pope Benedict, not swayed by hearsay, frequently reiterated that the theme of the visit was "Christ Our Hope" and stressed his optimism that the visit would prompt "a time of spiritual renewal for all Americans." Whether he was addressing international or interreligious leaders, educators, priests and religious, bishops, youths or baseball stadiums full of Catholics, the pope stuck with that message of hope in Christ throughout his various stops. Overall reviews of the papal visit were positive and then some.
"In general, the visit was a terrific success. He hit a home run every time he went up to bat," said Jesuit Father Thomas Reese, senior fellow at Woodstock Theological Center in Washington.
Pre-trip speculation about whether Pope Benedict would address the clergy sex abuse crisis was put aside from the start when the pope spoke on the plane ride to Washington of being "deeply ashamed" about the scandal. He followed those comments with several other references to the abuse scandal and then a personal meeting with abuse victims.
The pope did "exactly what American Catholics needed and wanted to see" from the person with the highest authority in the church, Father Reese said, adding that the directness will have a positive impact on the church. "He took the issue seriously, knowing that apologizing once wasn't going to do it," the priest added.
Thomas Groome, director of the Institute of Religious Education and Pastoral Ministry at Boston College, called the pope's visit a "resounding success," where he "did and said all the right things." In an e-mail to Catholic News Service, Groome said Pope Benedict offered Catholics and other Christians of this country a "new apologetic" for their faith that he described as "one of persuasion rather than legislation," where he encouraged people to follow the "way of Jesus" to find freedom, truth and happiness. The pope also reached out to young people, making reference to them in homilies and meeting with them on the grounds of St. Joseph's Seminary in Yonkers, N.Y., April 19. Mike Hayes, associate director of Paulist Young Adult Ministries in New York and managing editor of the Paulist online site, said the immediate impact of Pope Benedict's visit might not necessarily be a flood of new vocations despite encouragement in that direction. Instead, he said, more young people will be "interested in connecting with what it means to be Catholic in today's world." To those who wondered how Pope Benedict would fill Pope John Paul II's shoes, especially with youths and young adults, Hayes has this perspective: "Where (Pope) John Paul was a rock star, (Pope) Benedict might be the audiobook." Simply put, people came to be with Pope John Paul; they came to listen to Pope Benedict, he told CNS April 24. Pope Benedict is "very direct, telling people, 'This is where we need to be,'" Hayes said, noting that even though the pope is "not a sound-bite guy" his directness is "something that young people really connect with." And they weren't just thrilled to see him for the moment either, because, as Hayes pointed out, many young adults have read Pope Benedict's two encyclicals on hope and love and now, of course, they can read his various messages to the U.S. church. Reading material is certainly one thing Pope Benedict left behind with papal texts available online at:, and in a special issue of Origins, the CNS documentary service.
As Father Reese pointed out, the pope's substantive speeches and homilies will "require reading and rereading."
The pope also left behind an improved image of himself among U.S. Catholics. Just two weeks before his arrival, only 18 percent of the general public and 37 percent of Catholics said they knew a lot about Pope Benedict. If the poll were redone now, Father Reese said, "the pope's approval rating should skyrocket."

Thursday, April 24, 2008

Padre Pio Not Very Important To Anonymous Jesuit

Pilgrims flock to see Padre Pio, the saint whose piety overcame Vatican doubters.
Nearly a million have booked to view the saint and thousands more are expected to queue for hours.
Paul Bompard in Rome

An excerpt.

Padre Pio, who was born in 1887 and died in 1968, is Catholicism’s most widely and fervently worshipped saint.

During his lifetime he was believed to have borne the stigmata – the wounds of the crucified Jesus – on his body, to have performed many miracles of healing, to have had the capacity of being in two places at the same time (bi-location) and to have emitted a strong aroma of wild flowers.

He was made a saint by John Paul II in 2001. But the Catholic hierarchy has not always warmed to him and he was accused of fraud throughout his life. In the 1960s John XXIII called him “a cloth idol” and he was at one point investigated by the Holy Office of the Vatican, which suspected him of “abuse of popular gullibility”. For a time Padre Pio was even forbidden to say Mass in public.

A senior Jesuit academic, who preferred to remain anonymous, told The Times: “This is a very tactile form of spirituality. It is not pagan, but it is not very important to my faith.”

Nevertheless, any objections in Rome were swept aside by the force of his veneration by millions of believers. A survey in 2006 by the Catholic weekly Famiglia Cristiana found that more Italians prayed to Padre Pio than to Jesus or the Virgin Mary.

This what the Summa Theologica has to say about the divine nature of saints (here)

Fr. Patrick Howell, S.J.Now Lead Jesuit At Seattle University

Key Jesuit leadership appointment announced
April 24, 2008
Pat Howell, S.J., named new rector of SU Jesuit community
Patrick Howell, S.J., has been named to the top religious post of rector to the Jesuit Community at Seattle University. Father Howell will continue his current responsibility as vice president of Mission and Ministry until his new role begins July 31. Fr. Howell will succeed Peter Ely, S.J., who will complete his term of service for the SU Jesuit community and will be taking a sabbatical to write a book. "I congratulate Fr. Howell in this appointment to service on behalf of the Society of Jesus," said SU President Stephen Sundborg, S.J.

"We Jesuits welcome him as our next religious superior, and we look forward to his continuing contribution to the mission of the university when he is rector." Appointed rector last week by the Very Rev. Father Adolfo Nicolas, S.J, superior general of the Society of Jesus in Rome, Fr. Howell's primary function for the six-year term will be to support and promote the Jesuit community's work at SU.

"The appointment came as a surprise, but as a great honor," Fr. Howell said. "We have a wonderful, energetic, deeply committed Jesuit community and I know they will buoy me up in this job." Fr. Howell entered the Society of Jesus in 1961 after earning his undergraduate degree in mathematics from Gonzaga University.

He received his masters degree in English literature from Boston College, studied at the Gregorian University in Rome, and earned a Doctorate in Ministry from Catholic University of America in 1985.

Prior to his role as vice president of Mission and Ministry at SU, Fr. Howell served as dean of the School of Theology and Ministry, and authored two books, Reducing the Storm to a Whisper: the Story of a Breakdown and A Spiritguide through Times of Darkness. His writings also appear regularly in a religion column for The Seattle Times.

Link (here)

Wednesday, April 23, 2008

An Irish Jesuit, For An Irish Leader

Good day at the Dáil
Shaun Connolly, Political Correspondent
An excerpt.
BERTIE AHERN began to let the past go yesterday as he said a softly spoken farewell to the Dáil he has dominated for more than a decade as part of his long goodbye from power. The journey will sweep him through the majestic setting of the US Congress next week before finally climaxing on May 6 when he meets the north’s first minister Ian Paisley at the site of the Battle of the Boyne. The deeply symbolic occasion will sear into the national consciousness the defining image of him as the bringer of peace, standing together with the enemy he tamed on the blood-soaked faultline of Irish history he helped soothe. Keen to avoid the Shakespearean drama of Charles Haughey’s sudden exit from the Dáil, Bertie chose a reflective quote from Jesuit writer Fr John Sullivan.

“Take life in installments. This day now, at least let this be a good day. Be always beginning, let the past go. Now let me do whatever I have the power to do,”
he told TDs as his final command to the Dáil as the Taoiseach was lost amid the chamber rising in unanimous applause. As befits this most pragmatic of men, the moment was executed without a trace of emotion from him. Apart from a lone Sinn Féin voice, the tributes that flowed towards Bertie were universally warm, but it was Mary Harney who touched on the enigma the man best.

Read the full article in the Irish Examiner (here)

Defiant GU Student

GU Won't Blindly Submit to Catholic Doctrine
By Apr 22 2008

In an interview within the lead story “A Papal Voyage, a Campus Question” (THE HOYA, Apr. 18, 2008, A1), Patrick Reilly, the president and founder of the Cardinal Newman Society, unnecessarily injected his disdain for sizable segments not only of the Georgetown campus community but of the Catholic community in general.

Reilly seemingly views a Catholic undergraduate education as a time for blind obedience to doctrine rather than an opportunity for the interaction of faith and reason, free thought and critical analysis of issues both religious and secular.

His view is the antithesis of what both a liberal arts education, even a Jesuit one, is supposed to be, but also of the inclusive nature of our campus. For example,

Reilly describes H*yas for Choice as “very much a problem” and describes its members as promoting the “killing of innocent children.” Using such language in no way furthers his argument, as it only serves to demean those of us who are both Catholic and pro-choice, a group to which many Catholics in the United States belong.

Reilly went on to denounce the forthcoming LGBTQ Resource Center, saying it should be frowned upon because it will celebrate sinful activity. Particularly given the events of the past school year that have furthered the need for such a center on campus, Reilly’s belief that Georgetown should not be supporting members of the LGBTQ community is insulting, harmful and incorrect.

People like Patrick Reilly are precisely what is wrong with the Church in current times. President DeGioia is right to stand up for the advancement of what he describes as “both academic freedom and ... the free exchange of ideas and opinions across all issues.”

Georgetown must continue to promote the free exchange of thought and critical analysis of issues. Thus far, particularly here at Georgetown, that resulted in a rejection of the views of those such as Reilly, based on both rationale and religious thought.

Link to the Hoya letter (here)
Adam Beck (COL ’10)April 21, 2008

Tuesday, April 22, 2008

Stonyhurst College A 400 Year Jesuit Tradition

Changes in the way Stonyhurst College is run
By Ben Briggs

A ROMAN Catholic college that admits pupils from all over the world has announced major changes to the way it is governed. Stonyhurst College, Hurst Green, near Clitheroe, is planning to establish a self-governing charity to own and manage the future development of the school. The decision has been reached after lengthy discussions between Roman Catholic religious order the Jesuit foundation - the Society of Jesus - and the Stonyhurst board of governors.

The Jesuit church has been involved in the running of the college for more than 400 years and will continue to have a say in the way it is run. Now though, instead of the college being run as a charitable arm of the Society of Jesus, it will be governed by a separate charitable trust which give the college greater financial flexibility. The charity is expected to come into operation within the next 12 months, once it has been approved by the Society of Jesus' offices in Rome.

A college spokesman said: "The announcement about governance at Stonyhurst is an important and exciting development in the way our schools will be governed and led in the future. Above all, the governors will work to safeguard and develop the Jesuit ethos of the school." The Society of Jesus will continue its 400 year involvement with Stonyhurst, one of the oldest Jesuit Colleges in the world. There will, for instance, be the same strong presence on the board of governors. "The main benefit of the new arrangements will be that the governors will have more financial autonomy to develop our schools to meet the needs of the 21st Century. That financial independence will be underpinned by an endowment from the Society of Jesus which will support us in staying true to the ideals that have guided us down the years."

Link (here)

Nancy P. And The True Believers

Looking at the Prisoners of Shangri-La
by Ed Kaitz

An excerpt.
“Socially engaged” Buddhism is a mirror image of “liberation theology” now raging through many Christian denominations and college campuses here in America.

This is why a Catholic defender of partial birth abortion rights like Nancy Pelosi can be invited to give a commencement speech at the Jesuit University of San Francisco. Progressive true believers at universities like this who have championed “diversity” over the years were in many cases simply out to overcome the “post-imperial guilt” associated with being European or Christian.

This is why historical European writers such as Alexis de Tocqueville, who wrote about the crucial place that “small town America” had in preserving American democracy, rarely made it to the class reading list. This is also why Barack Obama will not be adversely affected by his recent patronizing remarks about this slice of American life: students have been hearing the same contempt since their schooling began.

Link to the full article at (here)

The Holy Father Pope Benedict XVI: USA Tour 2008

Via and thanks to Catholic Culture for this excellent recap.
Well, ahem, probably the best course is to get myself out of trouble by giving you the complete list of Pope Benedict's statements while he was in the United States. Here they are, all in one place:
On the plane: I Go to the United States with Joy
To President Bush: Faith Sheds New Light on All Things
To the Bishops: The People of This Country Are Known for Their Great Vitality and Creativity
Homily at National's Stadium: Americans Have Always Been a People of Hope
To Catholic Educators: Freedom Is Not an Opting Out, it Is an Opting In
To Religious Leaders: A United Society Can Indeed Arise From a Plurality of Peoples
To Members of the Jewish Community: On the Feast of Pesah
To Other Religious Communities: Address at the Ecumenical Prayer Service
To UN Staff: Meeting with Staff of the United Nations
To the UN General Assembly: Human Rights Must Be Respected as an Expression of Justice
To the Disabled: Meeting with Young People Having Disabilities
To Young People and Seminarians: Meeting with Young People and Seminarians
Homily at St. Patrick's Cathedral: Votive Mass for the Universal Church
At Ground Zero: God of Peace, Bring Your Peace to Our Violent World
Homily at Yankee Stadium: Look to the Future with Hope
Farewell Address: Promote Peaceful Co-Existence among Nations
There's a treasure-trove of spiritual reading here. If you haven't already, I invite you to sample it.

Jeff Mirus President
Trinity Communications

Monday, April 21, 2008

Unhappy Campers! I Mean, Unhappy Catholics

Theology students extol pope's pastoral gifts but say change unlikely
By Chris Herlinger
An excerpt.
Jeremy Kirk, 30, a master of arts candidate at Union, plans to pursue a doctorate in Christian ethics focusing on the work of Jesuit Father Jon Sobrino, a Latin American liberation theologian. Kirk gave measured praise to Pope Benedict's pastoral outreach to those who survived clergy sexual abuse. "I see he's doing the right thing pastorally," said Kirk, whose social activism includes volunteering with the Catholic Worker Movement. "The apology (Pope) Benedict offered impressed me. But it would have been more powerful if every person involved in an institutional cover-up (of clergy sex abuse) would be ousted from office."

The pope remains a symbol of a hierarchy "that has failed the victims," Kirk said, adding that he believed media coverage of the pope's visit was focusing too much on Pope Benedict's pastoral image rather than on what Kirk said was the pope's potent political symbolism. "If the pope had gone to the nearest soup kitchen after arriving and (President) Bush had been the third person, rather than the first person, he had met, I'd be happier," said Kirk.

Catholic students are a minority at Union but one of the largest single denominational groups at the predominantly Protestant school. Although Union is still perhaps best-known for being the midcentury intellectual home of such leading Protestant theologians as Reinhold Niebuhr (American Socialist) and Paul Tillich, since the 1970s the school has been known as a leading center of study in the United States for black and feminist liberation theologies. The prominent black theologian James Cone, for example, has taught at Union for more than three decades. But Union also has had a long tradition of hosting well-known Catholics.

Liberation theologians such as Peruvian Dominican Father Gustavo Gutierrez have taught for short terms at Union, which has ties with Columbia University. Catholic scholars not associated with liberation theology, including the late biblical scholar Sulpician Father Raymond Brown, (troublesome, read link) have also been permanent faculty at Union.

Of the current five full-time Catholic faculty members at Union, three are women. Union's current Catholic faculty includes Jesuit Father Roger Haight, whose book, "Jesus Symbol of God," (contains grave doctrinal errors) was sharply criticized by the Vatican Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith when it was headed by then-Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger, now Pope Benedict. The Vatican has banned Father Haight from teaching at a Catholic institution.

Another Roman Catholic theologian who has had trouble with the Vatican is Paul F. Knitter, currently Union's Paul Tillich professor of theology, world religions and culture.

Kirk told Catholic News Service April 20 that Union was lucky to have scholars like Father Haight and Knitter on the faculty, adding that the student view of Pope Benedict at Union is colored in large part by the pope's relationship with them, with figures like Father Sobrino and by Pope Benedict's past criticism of liberation theology. For her part, Harris -- a Catholic who used to be Presbyterian --

said her concern about church reform, specifically the need to expand the eligibility for clergy to include noncelibate men and women, is coming out of real and "lived experience."

Catholic women at Union share a commissioning service as a tribute to their work and also as a formal recognition that they cannot be ordained as clergy within their church. Harris said she would like to be ordained if she could be, though she doubts that her ineligibility will change in her lifetime. Still, she added, "We never thought we'd see altar girls and now we do have altar girls."

Link (here)

Fr. James Martin, S.J. , "I Am Liberal"

The Jewish People, Joseph Ratzinger and Me
By Father James Martin
An excerpt.
Benedict’s trip has been a surprise for me. To be honest, I was one of those (many) liberal Catholics who was disappointed by his election. (At the time, I told someone that when Pope Benedict XVI first stepped onto the Vatican balcony after his election, I felt like jumping off of one!)
In his previous role as prefect of the Congregation of the Doctrine of the Faith, charged with serving as the church’s theological watchdog, it was his job to ensure doctrinal purity, especially among theologians.
During his many years in that position, he disciplined many good scholars and writers, even some of my friends, who were doing their best to advance Catholic theology.
Link to the full editorial (here)
Hat Tip to Karen Hall at Some Wear Clerics for some more reflection go (here)

Are You Too Young To Be A Jesuit?

Vocations in focus
21 April 2008
Conall O’Cuinn SJ has just returned from a three day Jesuit European Vocation Directors Meeting in Frankfurt, Germany. They addressed key issues such as: men joining too young; men joining too old (when formation becomes ineffective); the reticence in Jesuits to invite people to join; and the move to have lay colleagues as vocation promoters.

Twenty Jesuit Provinces were represented at the meeting, including Lebanon, Romania, and Malta.

Fr. Orlando Torres SJ, assistant to the General for formation, attended all of the sessions. [ For photos of the meeting, click here.]
Link (here)
St. Aloysius Gonzaga, S.J. joined the "Society of Jesus" at 17, read more about him (here)
St. John Berchmans, S.J. joined the "Society of Jesus" at 17, read more about him (here)

Pope Benedict XVI Meet Avery Cardinal Dulles Privately

Benedict & Avery Dulles
How absolutely wonderful.The Pope is going to make a personal visit to Cardinal Avery Dulles in his bedroom while in Dunwoody seminary. It was not on his schedule. Cardinal Dulles is too ill to attend any of the events but no one deserves a private visit more. Dulles, who is 89, is one of the great converts and theologians of the 20th century and gave his final annual McGinley lecture at Fordham on April 1. When I met him last April, he was still able to walk with a cane. Now he is wheelchair bound.
Link to the full post at Intentional Disciples (here)

Sunday, April 20, 2008

Quote Of The Day: The Jesuit

Today, it is good to pray for priests, but not only for priests. I went for confession today and I was asked to pray for religious Sisters and Brothers many of whom are struggling. The form of life called Religious Life is waning not because it is no longer relevant but because somewhere in our history, priests and religious have failed to remain faithful to Christ crucified but are instead infatuated with the spirit of the world. In our desperation to be relevant, we might have just made ourselves irrelevant.
The Jesuit in his blog Jesuit Homilies read his full post entitled Holy Thursday Year A

The Stirring Of The Holy Spirit At Boston College

A Posture for Prayer
April 19, 2008
Posted by Fr. Robert P. Imbelli
Those, who watched on television the Mass at Saint Patrick’s Cathedral, saw, from time to time, the large cross placed on the altar, between the Pope and the assembly. It is Benedict’s effort to introduce a spiritual “ad orientem” posture to the Eucharistic liturgy. Yesterday, at the request of a group of Boston College students, I celebrated Mass with them in the lower church of the parish where I reside.
For the first time since I was ordained, I prayed the Eucharistic prayer of the ordinary form of the Roman rite facing in the same direction as the congregation, with a standing cross in front of the altar.
When I asked the students afterwards what they had experienced by this new (both for them and for me) posture, they concurred with one student’s description. They were helped to experience being offered together with Christ to the Father. Twice this past year I have attended the extraordinary form of the Roman rite; and, although I was moved by it, I felt the lack of an audible praying of the Eucharistic prayer to be a limitation. I will need to ponder last evening’s experience further, and would welcome thoughts of others who have experienced a similar liturgical celebration.
Link (here)
Fr. Zulsdorf's comments (here)
Joe Garcia's Hat Tip (here)

Benedict XVI, "This Will Be A Time Of Purification For Each And Every Particular Church And Religious Community,"

Deal reached in Alaska abuse cases
Sunday, April 20, 2008
Attorneys for more than a hundred people who say they were victims of abuse involving Jesuits in Alaska reached a $50 million negotiated settlement.
Rob Adams
The 110 people, all Alaska Natives, said they were abused by 15 Jesuit priests, brothers or those supervised by Jesuits from about 1961 to 1987. The alleged abuse occurred in remote villages along the coast of Western Alaska and along the Yukon River. Officials at the Society of Jesus,
Oregon Province said Sunday that any settlement announcement would be premature since details had yet to be worked out. But copies of the "draft settlement documents" were leaked that confirms a settlement for $50,000,000 to be paid to the plaintiffs/claimants. The lawsuits also named the Diocese of Fairbanks, which owned and managed the churches in the villages where the Jesuit priests, brothers and volunteers were assigned, the victims' attorneys said.
The Fairbanks Diocese has not settled, and negotiations continue. In the past several years, many cases have been filed against the Jesuits in the Northwest, and the province has considered filing for voluntary bankruptcy. It is not clear how Sunday's announcement would affect any bankruptcy decision. Excluding the Sunday announcement, the Oregon Province — which includes Washington, Alaska, Oregon, Montana and Idaho — has spent about $16 million to settle claims with 61 victims against 41 priests since 2002.
In the Washington state, there have been several settlements, including those involving the Revs. Michael Toulouse and Englebert Axer, both former professors at Seattle University, and against the Rev. John Leary, former president of Gonzaga University. All three men are deceased.
The victims' attorneys said the $50 million settlement is the largest against a religious order in the recent Catholic Church abuse cases.

Link to original article (here)

Link to the Holy Fathers comments (here)

Link to the Boston abuse scandal (here)

University Of Scranton Presents Awards

Two will receive Pedro Arrupe Award The directors of two of the preeminent Jesuit ministries in the United States will be honored with the University of Scranton’s annual Pedro Arrupe, S.J., Award for distinguished contributions to Ignatian mission and ministries. The awards to Suzanne Geaney, executive director of the Ignatian Volunteer Corps, and the Rev. Kenneth Gavin, S.J., national director of the Jesuit Refugee Service/USA, will be presented at a university assembly on Wednesday at noon in the DeNaples Center Theater as part of ongoing celebrations of the university’s 120th anniversary of its founding in 1888.
Link (here)

Saturday, April 19, 2008

In My Day

Omaha Observes Earth Day
Thousands think green during Elmwood Park celebration
Apr 19, 2008
Thousands descended on Elmwood Park Saturday for Omaha's 17th annual Earth Day observance, featuring speakers, music, food, freebies and an education on how we can all take steps to protect the environment.

Teacher Mike Mansour won this year's green award for designing a Web site with his class at Jesuit Middle School with tips on how to go green.

Things like making copies on double-sided paper and turning off computer monitors when not in use. Mansour's family practices what they preach.

"In our house we recycle and we have the light bulbs that are better for the
earth, just those little things,"

says Kari Mansour. "You know, I've got a little daughter right now and so I want the world to be a good place for her and I want it to be a good place for me,” says Mike. If you want to read more tips from Mike Mansour's class, log on to
Link (here)
In my day, my mother told me to shut the lights off with the follow up zinger, "We are not made out of money, shut the lights off!" In my day, attending a Catholic middle school we collected recycled newspapers because the school used it as a fund raiser. The class with the most newspapers collected won a free ice cream. We were bribed with a frozen Heath Bar Crunch. In my day, we car-pooled to school because our parents went to work. In my day every one raised their air conditioners to 77 and wore an extra sweater in the winter because Jimmy Carter said so. In my day no one even new what an Earth Day was, these things were just common sense.

3,000 Catholic Clergy And Nuns Errupted In Applause

Pope laments abuse scandal in Mass with priests
Daniel Burke/Religion News Service
April 19, 2008
An excerpt.
a top Vatican official traveling with Benedict hinted to reporters that the church was considering revising how it handles accusations of sexual abuse by extending its statute of limitations on when victims may come forward. Clergy said they welcomed the pope's repeated attention to the scandal's scars, even if they had not anticipated that the issue would be such a prominent theme of the trip.

"I was happy to hear his solidarity with all of the good priests and religious, the vast majority of whom had nothing to do with the crisis," said the Rev. James Martin
, the associate editor of America magazine, a Jesuit weekly. Benedict was greeted at the doors of the massive Gothic cathedral by New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg as trumpets sounded and some 3,000 Catholic clergy and nuns erupted in applause.

Link (here)

Talk About Missing The Boat

Hans Küng tells why Jesuit college rejected young Wojtyla
Banned Swiss theologian Hans Küng has told the ABC that Pope John Paul II failed to gain admittance to Rome´s Gregorian University in his student days because he lacked a strong background in modern exegesis and theology. Küng, who turns 76 tomorrow, is emeritus professor of theology at Tübingen University in Germany. His right to teach at Catholic universities was revoked by the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith in 1979. He was speaking to Stephen Crittenden on yesterday´s Religion Report on ABC Radio National. He said:
"In the period when I was at the Gregorian, Karol Wojtyla was studying in Rome, and I think it was important to mention that he was certainly intelligent enough to enter the Pontifical Gregorian University of the Jesuits, but he obviously did not have the prerequisites in the plan of studies." Küng said
Wojtyla´s studies had focused on the neo-scholastic theology of St Thomas Aquinas. He was admitted to the Dominicans´ Angelicum University after ordination in 1946.
"I think it’s a fact that Karol Wojtyla does not know enough modern exegesis, history of dogmas, modern theology," he said. "He has a very traditional neo-scholastic training, but I think that these are his limits, and I do not see why we cannot speak openly about that." Küng,
who was a theological adviser to the Second Vatican Council alongside his then colleague Joseph Ratzinger, has recently published the first volume of his autobiography. Reminiscences of his contemporary Wojtyla will appear in the second volume.
SOURCE Hans Kueng on the death of Cardinal Koenig (ABC Religion Report 17/3/04)
Link (here)

Some Interesting French And German Jesuit Practices In The 1960's

Doing God in the land of Mammon
By Christopher Howse
An excerpt.
Modernity is a question that has interested Pope Benedict deeply. Just because he was 81 last Wednesday and wears funny clothes does not mean he is unaware of the way the world wags. In a fascinating new book about his ideas, Ratzinger's Faith (Oxford, £12.99), Tracey Rowland gives an instructive incident from 40 years ago to illustrate his perspective on the current age.
In 1968, the year of student demos - at his own university at Tübingen as much as at the Sorbonne - he was not shocked by bolshie intellectuals on the streets. What disturbed him was that on the barricades, Jesuit and Dominican priests were giving out Holy Communion to anyone, whether they shared the faith of the Church or not.
This might sound odd or unimportant, from an ordinary, secular point of view. But Pope Benedict, or Joseph Ratzinger as he was then, had developed a clear view of the Eucharist as literally embodying the Church. In other words, the Church as the Mystical Body of Christ is made what it is by the presence of God in the Sacrament of the Eucharist. This was an insight he derived from St Augustine, the fourth-century North African bishop.

Link to the full story (here)
Photo is of President Bill Clinton receiving the Eucharist