Saturday, May 31, 2008

Renagade Bishop Denied Right To Preach By Cardinal Mahoney, Welcomed At Jesuit Fairfield University

This is what Cardinal Rode was talking about at the start of GC35
"Canon 763 makes it clear that the Diocesan Bishop must safeguard the preaching of God's Word and the teachings of the church in his own Diocese,"

Cardinal Roger M. Mahony, the archbishop of Los Angeles, wrote in a letter to Bishop Geoffrey Robinson. "Under the provisions of Canon 763, I hereby deny you permission to speak in the Archdiocese of Los Angeles." But where Robinson was denied Catholic venues, he found others. On Long Island in New York, he spoke at a Unitarian Universalist parish, which waived its rental fee because, he said, the congregation viewed the bishop and his audience as "an oppressed minority." In New Jersey he spoke at a Lutheran church; in southern California he is speaking at a university, a community center, and a hotel. In New England, the bishops have been quieter.
Robinson spoke at Fairfield University, ( on Saturday, May 24th at Fairfield University Dolan School of Business, Dining Room ) a Catholic college in southern Connecticut, as well as at St. Susanna Church and the Paulist Center.
Cardinal Sean P. O'Malley has declined several requests for comment. At the same time, Voice of the Faithful, the reform organization founded in Wellesley, last week gave Robinson its top honor as a "priest of integrity." And Liturgical Press, the Catholic publishing house that is printing Robinson's book, "Confronting Power and Sex in the Catholic Church," said it sold out its first run, of 3,000 copies, and is rushing a second run into print.

Read the full Boston Globe article (here)

Commencement Speaker Is A Conservative, A Repubican, A Catholic And A Pro-Lifer, Huh!

Clarence Thomas Hails 'Dream Come True' at Washington Jesuit Academy
Associate US Supreme Court Justice, Clarence Thomas, emphasized the virtues of diligence, self-discipline and hope for graduates of the Washington (DC) Jesuit Academy.
A survivor of 1950s-era racial discrimination and poverty in the South, Thomas persevered and graduated from both Holy Cross College and Yale Law, and joined the Nation's High Court in 1991.
Thomas lauded the WJA's curriculum and rigorous standards, saying: "If this could be replicated across the United States, so many of our problems could be solved." The virtues of diligence, self-discipline and hope were emphasized for graduates of the Washington Jesuit Academy (WJA) by Associate Justice of the U.S. Supreme Court, Clarence Thomas. In his remarks, Thomas lauded the WJA's curriculum and rigorous standards, saying: "If this could be replicated across the United States, so many of our problems could besolved."
WJA President, William Whitaker commented: "We invited Justice Thomas because he serves as an incredibly apt role model for our students." Whitaker continued, "Like almost a quarter of WJA students, Justice Thomas had no contact with his own father. Yet, with the devotion of extended family, and his own diligence in school, Justice Thomas succeeded academically, and rose to the top of the Nation's legal system. This American success story stands as an outstanding example for WJA's students to emulate."
WJA succeeds in educating its boys, almost all of whom are from at-risk backgrounds (of the 68 students enrolled, 83 percent come from single-parent households; 82 percent qualify for free, or reduced payments for the Federal lunch program). For instance: when entering WJA's sixth grade, only 13 percent of the school's students read at grade level; but after three years of a WJA education, the percentage reading at, or above, grade level exceeds 90 percent. More than 80 percent of all WJA graduates are enrolled in college prep high school education.
WJA, founded by the Jesuit order of priests who established Washington's Georgetown University and Prep, as well as Gonzaga College High School, provides tuition-free middle school education to students from disadvantaged backgrounds.
The typical day at WJA goes from 7:30 AM to 7:30 PM; three nutritional meals are provided; and the academic year extends to 11 months.
Link (here)
My Grandfather's Son (here)
"Old Man Can't is dead !" (here)

Fr. Pfleger Was Jesuit Educated: The Priest Of Black Liberation Theology

The Reverend Dr. Michael Louis Pfleger received his B.A. in Theology from Loyola University, his Master of Divinity from the University of St. Mary of the Lake, and an honorary Doctor of Divinty from North Park Theological Seminary. He has also completed post-graduate studies at Mundelein College and the Catholic Theological Union. Father Pfleger was ordained a priest of the Archdiocese of Chicago on May 14, 1975. In 1981, at the age of 31, he became the youngest full pastor in the diocese when he was appointed Pastor of Saint Sabina Church. In 1981, Father Pfleger became the proud adoptive father of an eight-year-old son, Lamar. In 1992, he also became the adoptive father of Beronti, who is presently a student at University of Central Florida. In 1997, he became a foster father to Jarvis Franklin, who was tragically killed as a result of gang crossfire, May 30,1998. Since 1968, Father Pfleger has lived and ministered in the African-American community on both the west and south sides of Chicago. He spent two summers working in a Native American community in Oklahoma, and did his seminary internship as a Chaplin at Cook County Jail and at Precious Blood Catholic Church, both in Chicago.
Link (here)
What is Black Liberation Theology: The Marxist roots of Black Liberation Theology (here) , Wikipedia (here) and Catholic Exchange (here)
Who is Louis Farrakhan (here)
Why a black Jesus? (here) and (here)
Canon Law on the role of priest in parishes, reasons for his removal (here).
Update: 06/03/08
Fr. Pfleger's video sermons (here)

Feast of the Sacred Heart of Jesus

Some Wear Clerics posted some great pieces entitled,
Devotion to The Sacred Heart Today by Fr. John Hardon, SJ and
Feast of the Sacred Heart of Jesus.
City and the World blog posted this,
"Notes on the Solemnity of the Sacred Heart of Jesus."

Friday, May 30, 2008

A Jesuit Saint Does Not Need His Fingers

Fr. Isaac Jogues and Jean Lalande were ambushed on the evening of October 18, 1644. While on a visit to villages in Ossernenon (modern day Auriesville, N.Y.), Jogues was ambushed and beheaded, his head placed on a pole facing the route from which he came. The following day Lalande was beheaded and his body thrown into the river. Lalande was a Jesuit oblate. Jogues had been in the missions since 1636, and had already had a close call when he was captured while on a trip with Goupil to Quebec for supplies.

They were beaten to the ground, assailed with knotted sticks, had their hair, beards, and nails torn off and their forefingers bitten off. Amazingly he survived and was freed through the efforts of Dutch colonists.

He returned to France a bit of a hero and took the first opportunity he could get to return to Canada (in the days when liturgical law was very specific that the Priest had to hold the Host with his thumb and forefingers, it is said that Jogues asked for and received a dispensation so that he could still celebrate Mass without the necessary digits). He became involved in negotiating peace between the Iroquois, the Hurons, and the French, when he and Lalande were attacked.

Link to Fr. Jay's blog Young Fogey's, his post is entitled Can You Name Them All?.

Wednesday, May 28, 2008

Therese And The Jesuit

Thérèse and Hope
The post happily lifted from Father Mark at Vultus Christi. Thank you for edifying the Jesuits!
About twenty-five years ago, I was on a quest to deepen my capacity for living the theological virtue of hope. More honestly . . . I was battling persistent temptations to hopelessness bordering on despair. I read everything on hope that I could find. One of the books that marked me was L'Espérance by Père Gustave Desbuquois, S.J. (Yes, I even read Jesuit authors!) The book, it appears, also exists in English translation under the title, Hope. What I didn't know at the time was that Père Desbuquois was one of the first advocates of Saint Thérèse of the Child Jesus and of the Holy Face being declared a Doctor of the Church. In a letter written in 1997, Father Camilo Maccise, O.C.D., and Father Joseph Chalmers, O.Carm., the Priors General of the Discalced Carmelites and of the Ancient Order of Carmel, traced the history of the doctorate of Saint Thérèse:

Already from the time of her canonization, there was no lack of bishops, preachers, theologians, and faithful from different countries who sought to have our sister Thérèse of Lisieux declared a Doctor of the Church. This flow of petitions in favor of the doctorate became official in 1932 on the occasion of the inauguration of the crypt of the Basilica at Lisieux, which was accompanied by a congress at which five cardinals, fifty bishops, and a great number of faithful participated.

On June 30, Father Gustave Desbuquois, SJ, with clear and precise theological argument, spoke of Thérèse of Lisieux as Doctor of the Church. Surprisingly, his proposal had the support of many of the participants, bishops, and theologians. This positive reaction to the suggestion of Father Desbuquois spread universally. Monseigneur Clouthier, Bishop of Trois Rivières, Canada, wrote to all the bishops of the world in order to prepare a petition to the Holy See. By 1933 he had already received 342 positive replies from bishops who supported the proposal to have Thérèse of Lisieux declared a Doctor of the Church.

The petition of Father Desbuquois was presented to Pope Pius XI, along with a letter of Mother Agnes of Jesus, sister of Therese and prioress of the Lisieux Carmel.

She informed the Pope about the great success of the Theresian Congress. On 31 August 1932, Cardinal Pacelli, Secretary of State, replied to Mother Agnes' letter on behalf of the Pope. He was very pleased about the positive results of the congress, but added that it would be better not to speak of Thérèse's doctorate yet, even though, "Her doctrine never ceased to be for him a sure light for souls searching to know the spirit of the Gospel."
Saint Thérèse of the Child Jesus and of the Holy Face, the Doctor of Hope? But, of course.

Link (here)

He Was The "Light Calvary" Of The Jesuits In The Philippines

Austere laurels
By Juan Mercado
Philippine Daily Inquirer

The old postcard, used as a pagemarker, slipped from the book we were flipping through. It stirred memories.
The tattered card depicted the “Hundred Islands” of Pangasinan province. Scribbled on it was one homesick line: “What has Rome got to compare with this?” The late Fr. Horacio de la Costa, S.J. had posted it from the Jesuit house on Borgio Spirito Santo, a block away from the Vatican. Columnist Carmen “Chitang” Napkil described De la Costa as “the gentle genius.”
He was priest, historian, professor; first Filipino to head the Jesuits in the Philippines. Later, he became special counselor to the legendary Fr. General Pedro Arrupe. When he died, at 60, in 1977, he had touched the lives of many: from ordinary workers to classmates like Raul Manglapus, Jesus Paredes and Chief Justice Claudio Teehankee.
His statue stands today at the Ateneo Loyola Heights campus. “I was there; second year high school; section C; Boy Scout Troop No. 5, rear rank,” De la Costa lightly joshed. And two incidents come to mind. The first was the small birthday party his mother hosted. Father De la Costa apologized for coming late.
Imelda Marcos summoned him to Malacañang to ask: Would he write the “New Society’s” history? The room fell silent. “And your answer?” someone asked. “They wanted me to be their Pigafetta,” he said with a quiet smile. “I replied: Madame, my specialization is the Spanish colonial period. Perhaps, you may wish to get somebody more qualified.”
The second incident: “Who is this man?” Indonesian editor Sumono Mustoffa whispered to the late columnist Apolonio “Pol” Battala at a Press Foundation of Asia seminar. “He knows more about my country than I do.” The slim, bespectacled De la Costa had, in a few, trenchant paragraphs, sketched out the history, status and problems of Indonesia’s clove industry—source of scented “kritik” cigarettes that Sumono and many of his countrymen puffed with panache. “On my return, I drove out to Bandung to check out with our agricultural scientists on what Father De la Costa presented,” Sumono told me at a Jakarta dinner shortly before the priest’s death. “He was right with that one.”
As a 22-year-old seminarian, De la Costa wrote “Light Cavalry,” a history of the Society of Jesus. The bombing of Manila scrubbed the scheduled release for Christmas of 1941. “Most copies were burned,” wrote his classmate Fr. James Reuter, S.J. “The Japanese used the metal type for bullets. So, the release was delayed for 56 years. Sorry about that.” Harvard University Press published, in 1961, his book on “Jesuits in the Philippines: 1581-1768.”
Former students compiled, 25 years after his death, his papers into four volumes. They are a must for any library. The scope covers his early writings, to studies on colonial Philippines, religious themes and national problems. The language sparkles. “Lord, he could write,” author Raul Rodrigo commented in a book review. And the unassuming scholarship that floored the Indonesian editor is patent throughout. Volume III, for example, is titled: “Selected Essays on the Filipino and His Problems Today.” It seems tailored for politicians scrambling for pelf and power. “The survival of democratic government in our country depends on whether or not people have confidence in the ability of government to reform itself. And they will have this confidence only if they see government making a serious effort to reform,”
De la Costa wrote. “They will lose confidence, they will lose hope, not only in their government but in themselves, if they see our ship of state continues to be, in the words of T.S. Eliot, ‘a drifting boat with a slow leakage.’ “They are no longer contented to be ‘forever bailing.’ They will not long be persuaded to ‘make a trip that will be un-payable, for a haul that will not bear examination.’ “We must stop the leakage; put an end to drift, find a direction and steer. Only thus can we solve what is perhaps our most critical problem: the restoration of hope.”
How? This is a country where “for all the trappings of a national government, we are not far from the era of the ‘barangay.’ We conduct our affairs pretty much in the manner of Lapu-Lapu and Humabon. [Today’s] congressman who moves around with his bodyguards is not much different from the ‘datu’ with his retainers,” he noted. “We can only go back to basic ideas: (1) Build communities; (2) Link communities with common goals; and (3) Recapture the bureaucracy.”
His homily at President Manuel Roxas’ Requiem Mass seemed written with today’s power-seekers in mind. “Posthumous deification is often accorded to those who die in the possession of public power. This is the tawdry privilege of the despot,” he said. But “civil authority is not personal but public.… It belongs to the people who may entrust it to whomever they freely choose. [And he] may not claim thereby the ‘divinity that doth hedge a king’ … He is held accountable always for the authority he holds in trust. And when his mandate is revoked, he must be willing … to return, as a private citizen, to the ranks from which he came.“ Let him not expect any reward but the consciousness of having served his people and his God. For often, he will get no reward but this…. Austere are the laurels of the republic.”
So, will it be possible for citizens to root out injustices embedded into social structures and become free? “Doubtless, we are naïve,” he replied. “We may be attempting the impossible. We don’t know. All we know is that we must attempt it.”
Link (here)

Ted Kennedy And His Jesuits: "Hyannisport Province"?

Ted Kennedy’s Good Fortune
By Thomas F. Roeser, Chicago Daily Observer
Posted in Our Columns on May 27, 2008
An excerpt.
As a Kennedy Fellow.
“You go out there and tell the dean that you are head of the class,” he said. That was just about the last time I talked with him. I certainly don’t want to imply that because he gave me a pass to become a Kennedy Fellow I am indebted to Ted. But I know this. He has many things to mull over during this interregnum and the time he now has can be put to good use. I particularly would advise him to review the meeting he and Bobby called for the family estate at Hyannisport in 1964 before abortion had become a federal issue. But the issue was moving front and center in state legislatures and the meeting was called to provide advice for Bobby who was running for the New York senate seat—but also for future Kennedys like Ted who wanted to follow Bobby in the presidency.

Attending that huddle in Hyannisport were Fr. Robert Drinan SJ (Longtime Dean of BC Law, later to become a pro-abortion congressman from Massachusetts, RIP); Fr. Charles Curran, a non-Jesuit whose writings against Humanae Vitae were condemned later by the Vatican; Fr. Joseph Fuchs, SJ, a professor at Gregorian University, Rome; Fr. Richard McCormick, SJ, (RIP) later to become the Rose Kennedy professor of the Kennedy Institute for Bioethics at Georgetown and after that a theology professor at Notre Dame; Fr. Giles Milhaven, SJ (Former Jesuit) who later figured in the early operation of “Catholics for Free Choice” and Fr. Albert Jonsen, SJ (President of University of San Francisco (1969-1972) ).

According to Philip Lawler in his brilliant new book about how Catholicism receded in Boston, The Faithful Departed: The Collapse of Boston’s Catholic Culture [Encounter: 2008, the hireling theologians worked for two days to develop a rationale for the Kennedys to handle the issue. “Eventually they reached a consensus, which they passed along to their political patrons. Abortion, they agreed, could sometimes be morally acceptable as the lesser of two evils. Lawmakers should certainly not encourage abortion but a blanket prohibition might be more harmful to the common good than a law allowing abortion in some cases…President Kennedy hads already laid the foundation for the argument that a Catholic politician must not attempt to enact his private religious views; now his brothers were prepared to take the next step forward. They were ready to explain that they were personally opposed to the abortion ban, but…”

From that time on, a smattering of Jesuit theologians provided a cover for that effort, writes Lawler including after “Roe” Ted Kennedy’s front-and-center support for abortion rights and his vote even for partial birth abortion—though stopping short at supporting the “Born Alive” ban (which Barack Obama personally endorsed while a member of the Illinois legislature, differing from such worthies as Kennedy, Barbara Boxer and Diane Feinstein).
At the Democratic national convention in Chicago in 1968 with his brother Robert dead, Eugene McCarthy failing to pick up the liberal slack and Hubert Humphrey unattractive to the peace delegates, Mayor Richard J. Daley privately joined with powerful California state house speaker Jesse (Big Daddy) Unruh to try to draft Ted Kennedy at the last minute for the nomination. Ted could have gotten the nomination without a struggle since McCarthy had expressed to this writer and others that he would withdraw in Ted’s favor (“which is what I wouldn’t have done for Bobby”)—but Ted turned it down. His tender age, 36, wasn’t a problem, McCarthy told me later since most of the founders were young men when the Constitution was ratified—Jefferson, 43, Madison, 35, Hamilton, 36.
Link to the full piece in The Chicago Daily Observer, entitled Ted Kennedy’s Good Fortune
Link to Karen Hall's blog Some Have Hats, her post is entitled, The Not-So-Saintly Ted Kennedy
More stories on the subject (here) , (here)

Tuesday, May 27, 2008

The Standard Of Christ

A Ignatian Prayer

That I May Be Received Under the Standard of Our Divine King

O Lord, behold me a suppliant praying before Thee.

I come to implore of Thee a grace which is repugnant to my nature and which I dread to obtain.

Alas, my heart is not indifferent: on the contrary,

it rebels at the thought of voluntary poverty, and the contempt of men.

It is to master my natural inclinations,

to vanquish self, and to conquer my heart,

to extinguish in it every spark of that self-love which

is not in accordance with the rule these exercises place before me,

that I entreat Thee to receive me under Thy standard.

May Thy Divine Majesty deign to shelter me beneath the folds of this Thy holy standard,

to give me the spirit of poverty and detachment,

and to call me even to the practice of actual and perfect poverty,

if such is Thy good pleasure.

Lord Jesus, in order that I may resemble Thee more closely,

grant me a share, I beseech Thee, in Thy humiliations,

and in the injustices that Thou didst meet with,

provided that I can bear them without committing any sin,

without ever displeasing, in any way,

Thy Divine Majesty.

O Blessed Virgin, Mother of my God, obtain for me from

Thy Divine Son the grace to be received and to march under His standard.

Hail Mary...

O Eternal Word, for the love Thou bearest our Lady,

Thy Blessed Mother, obtain for me from the Father the grace to be received

and to march under Thy standard.

Anima Christi…

O Father, for the love Thou bearest the most holy Virgin Mary,

for the sake of Thy Son, our Lord,

I beseech Thee to grant me the grace to be received

and to march under the standard of Jesus Christ.

Our Father...

Monday, May 26, 2008

A Jesuit, The Blessed Mother And Hindu goddesses


An Interview with Prof. Francis X. Clooney, S.J.,
Divinity School, Harvard University
Frontline, Volume 22 - Issue 19, Sep 10 - 23, 2005
India's National Magazine
from the publishers of THE HINDU
An excerpt from a longer interview.

What is comparative theology? Is its objective similar to or different from comparative studies done in the fields of, say, literature or culture? In the latter the primary aim is to identify contrasts and similarities. Does comparative theology go beyond this?

It does. There are two disciplines that are fairly well established. One is comparative religion. It is more or less like being a scientist in a laboratory, where the scientist studies different religions looking for common interests, sorting out the differences and then writing objectively about them.
The other is theology of religions, which is a Christian theological discipline of trying to make judgments about other religions in the light of the Christian faith.
For instance, Joseph Cardinal Ratzinger [Pope Benedict XVI] writing Dominus Iesus [a 2000 Vatican document that reaffirmed the uniqueness and necessity of the Catholic Church and Jesus Christ in achieving salvation]. But the theology of religions is usually vague because it talks about "the religions" in general. The subject could be Judaism, Hinduism, or any other religion. So what I tried to do with comparative theology - which is an old term from 1700, but which I was reinventing - was to use "comparative" and "theological" together. This discipline deals with one's own faith and background, but also then comparing across religious boundaries. My ideal is that somebody in one religious tradition would take time to study another religious tradition in some depth and then ask the question:
How does studying this other religious tradition affect me personally, my community, my Church and so on?
So it is a kind of back-and-forth process of learning from similarities and differences, but basically taking them to heart - learning from the other and allowing it to change your life.
Can you elaborate with reference to your latest work on the Blessed Virgin Mary and three Hindu goddesses?
I have done different projects over the years - in the Darsanas, Purva Mimamsa, Advaita Vedanta, Ramanuja's Vishista Advaita. Then I did Hindu God, Christian God, on themes in Christian theology and how they were developed also by Hindu theologians. It dealt with technical themes showing that theologians exist both in the Hindu and Christian traditions. But in that book I did not talk about gender, I did not talk about male-female issues, or about the ideas of god and goddess - in the U.S. context today these are hot issues... .

So too, women in the Church and in religion, what God is like and so on. And I decided that what I wanted to do was to take up the theme of goddesses in the Hindu religion in order to make Americans understand the goddess traditions of India.
So, the first part of it was simply to choose three goddess texts. I chose three hymns - Sri Guna Ratna Kosa, Saundarya Lahari and Abhirami Andhadhi - and wrote a chapter each explaining the goddess hymns to a Christian, Western audience, which often has a very superficial understanding about goddesses. I explained them in some depth in the tradition and then, as a comparative theologian, explored what these goddesses can mean for Christians.
My book does not say that a Christian should worship Abhirami or pray to Lakshmi ( The goddess of wealth and beauty ) - which would be difficult for a Christian. Instead, it compares the goddesses with the Virgin Mary in the Catholic tradition.
It does not say that Mary is the goddess or the goddesses are Mary, but rather that there are interesting ways in which Mary has a place of reverence just like one of the goddesses.
In what ways? Can you give some examples?
These goddesses are supreme mother figures, supreme women; they are beautiful, gracious; they are purusakara (mediator), they are the vehicles of grace for the world; people often find salvation by going to the goddess, by praying to the goddess. In the Christian tradition, in theory, you can go straight to god, or to Jesus. There is no need for goddesses. But in fact, so many Roman Catholics and the Eastern Orthodox pray to Mother Mary. And Mary is the beautiful one, the gracious one, the Mother. For many people it seemed easier to pray to Mary than directly to Jesus or to God. So you pray to Jesus, then you pray to the Mother of Jesus. But it is basically for intercession, or mediation... .Yes. So it is not exactly the same because ( important link ) Devi in the Saundarya Lahari is supreme Goddess.

Mary is not supreme that way, but for many Christians Mary is Number 1, or seems to be so.
Apparently, your study has important implications for the debate about gender and the divine - God seen and understood in exclusively masculine terms in official theology and popular imagination - one of the important concerns of feminist theology. In the first chapter of the book I take up explicitly the issues of feminist thought and feminist theology because of the great concern expressed by many women today in the West. They are concerned about changing language, changing thought patterns in order to think from the perspective of the woman instead of just that of the male.
So there is a great debate in the West now about the female image, the female way of thinking, the female body as opposed to the male body in culture. Many feminists go back in ancient Europe looking for the goddesses before Christianity.
But very few of these feminists ever pay attention to India. They act as if only searching in European ground for statues of goddesses is a way to understand. Whereas my point is that you have thousands of years of hymns, puranas and other texts in India that talk very intelligently about God and Goddess, male and female, how to think about the similarities and differences, and what does it mean to be male and female. I hope to get Western feminists, religious or not religious, to pay attention more to India and what we can learn from the Indian traditions.
You primarily work across two traditions - Hinduism and Catholic Christianity.
Christianity is a coherent whole (all Christian denominations agree on the Nicene Creed, the Bible is the religious book), whereas Hinduism is best understood as a culture with a religious dimension to it. Moreover, there is practically nothing that unites the innumerable schools of thought, and gods and goddesses of Hinduism.
Does this pose any particular challenge to doing comparative theology?
Modern scholars often ask where the word "Hinduism" came from. It is so much of a modern word. If you read back in the ancient texts, people were not calling themselves "Hindu". And I think there is a great diversity in the Indian traditions, such a variety of theistic, non-theistic... So any comparison between Christianity and religion in India is only imperfect, or partial. But what I do is, therefore, try to narrow it down to some text, to some period of time, to one tradition.
For instance, the Sri Vaisnava tradition is not all of Hinduism by any means, but reading Ramanuja, reading Nammalvar, reading Vedanta Desika, you have a coherent piece of Hinduism, a piece of Hindu tradition.
And that is similar to coherent pieces of Christian theology, Christian religion. But also, particularly when I am teaching, I try to help my students understand that there is much greater variety in Hinduism, that there is no figure like the Pope trying to establish the identity. But if one merely says "Hinduism can be anything", that would be too much, since then you could say almost anything. One must be specific. I never claim to speak all about Hinduism, I try to be much more selective. That is why in writing Divine Mother, Blessed Mother, I picked only three hymns. I could not speak about all goddesses, but I picked three texts with their commentaries.
Picture is of Devi the hindu mother goddesses.

Link to the original article (here)
Who is?
Fr. Francis X. Clooney, S.J., (here) , (here) , (here) and (here) Curriculum Vitae (here)
Mother Teresa of Calcutta (here) , (here) and (here)
St. Francis Xavier, S.J. (here) , (here) and (here)

What is ?
Hinduism (here) , (here) and (here)
Syncretism (here) and (here)
The Caste System (here) , (here) and (here)
Hinduism and human sacrifice (here) , (here) and (here)
Sati ( Ceremony of Burning a Hindu Widow with the Body of her Late Husband ) (here) , (here) and (here)
Hindu persecution of Catholics (here) , (here) , (here) , (here) , (here) and (here)
A Dalit (here) , (here) and (here)
Yoga (here)
Problems with?
Yoga and Catholicism (here) , (here) , (here) and (here)

Sunday, May 25, 2008

A European Jesuit Education Creates An Irish Politician, Convict, Famous Orator, Union Civil War Officer, Hero, Patriot And Governor Of Montana

Meagher of the Irish Brigade
By John E. Carey
Peace and Freedom
In one magical and sweeping moment, an Irishman that had been exiled from Britain for attempting to overthrow the King of England, approached the Governor of New York and asked his permission to raise and equip a body of troops. Practically all the volunteers would be Irishmen. That man was Thomas Francis Meagher, founder of the famed Irish Brigade. Thomas Francis Meagher, the controversial and flamboyant commander of the famed Irish Brigade (2nd Brigade, 1st Division, Meagher (pronounced Mahr) was born in Waterford, Ireland, on Aug. 23, 1823. He grew up amid the Irish independence movement.
He learned discipline and logic from Irish Jesuits at the Clongowes Wood boarding school in Kildare. He studied law in England at the Jesuit Stonyhurst College, where he honed his oratorical skills. He became so convinced of the legitimacy of the violent opposition to oppression, and gave so many eloquent speeches detailing his logic, that he became knows as “Meagher of the Sword.”
Many, perhaps most of his contemporaries in Ireland, considered him a patriot and a hero. He became the spokesman of the independence movement. As famine destroyed Ireland and thousands departed for America, Meagher toiled tirelessly for his cause. Early in 1848, at age 25, he was brought before the bar of justice ostensibly for inciting revolt. He was acquitted by just two votes - in essence, a hung jury. Later that year, implicated as a conspirator in the rebellion, Meagher was imprisoned, and charged with “levying war against the Queen” and “compassing [in this case, scheming or conspiring] the death of the Queen.” Despite his protestation that the jury had been packed, he was convicted and sentenced to death. Queen Victoria “graciously” ordered that the sentence should be “mitigated to transportation for life.” Meagher was exiled to Tasmania off the coast of Australia. In 1852, he escaped and made his way to New York City, where he was greeted with a hero’s welcome by his countrymen. Meagher Clubs were formed and he became a lecturer, co-founder of a journal called the Citizen, and founder and editor of the New York Irish News.
He lived for a year in Central America, participating in a plan to put a railroad across Panama. He hunted big game. He spoke everywhere to enthusiastic audiences, becoming one of the best-known speakers of his day.
After the death of his first wife, the handsome and eloquent Meagher courted Elizabeth Townsend, daughter of Peter Townsend a wealthy New York businessman (Sterling Iron Works) who tore up his will when he learned of his daughter’s intention to marry the firebrand Meagher. Nonetheless, they were married. In the late 1850s, Meagher traveled through the South frequently, expressing sympathy for the Southern cause. He wrote editorials and campaigned for Democratic candidates. But as war broke out, he understood the need to bring Irishmen to arms in support of the Union. He knew well how the Union had accepted so many Irish exiles and poor immigrants.
He knew the importance of America’s toleration for all religions and peoples. “Duty and patriotism alike prompt me to it. The Republic that is the mainstay of human freedom, the world over, that gave us asylum and an honorable career, is threatened,” he wrote. “It is the duty of every liberty loving citizen to prevent such a calamity at all hazards. Above all it is the duty of us Irish citizens, who aspire to establish a similar form of government in our native land.”
In 1861, he raised a company of “Irish Zouaves,” to be attached to the 69th New York militia. The colonel of the 69th, Michael Corcoran, was being court-martialed for insubordination at the outbreak of the war - having refused to march his men in a parade honoring the Prince of Wales. Corcoran’s trial dissolved amid the need to put troops into the field. Meagher, 38 and a captain in the 69th, took his Zouaves along to Bull Run, where he attained recognition and praise in battle.
A sergeant under his command wrote, there was “not on this continent a braver man than Thomas Francis Meagher.” Mustered out at the completion of their 90 days of service, Meagher and many of his allies immediately set out to recruit a unit of Irish volunteers to serve for three years. In his appeals, he reminded young Irish immigrants that their ancestors, divided and unable to unify, had allowed England to conquer their homeland.
Meagher’s persuasive talents as a recruiter eventually led to the creation of the Irish Brigade: the 63rd, 69th and 88th New York regiments. The brigade later included the 28th Massachusetts and the 116th Pennsylvania. In camp near Alexandria, Meagher and the Irish Brigade attained instant notoriety. Meagher adorned his headquarters with the skin of a jaguar he had brought home from Central America. The troops were well-drilled and finely turned out - but sometimes rambunctious and fond of their whiskey.
Meagher made St. Patrick’s Day an event talked about by the entire Army of the Potomac. Maj. Gen. Joe Hooker, when commanding the Army of the Potomac, was the honored guest at one celebration. Festivities began on the eve of the holiday, with the night of March 16 devoted to music and song.At dawn on March 17, according to Meagher’s biographer, Michael Cavanagh, preparations were made for Roman Catholic Mass. “A new and elegant vestment had been purchased by the men for their beloved chaplain, Rev. William Corby,” he wrote. After Mass, the brigade challenged units of the Army of the Potomac to athletic contests, followed by food and drink.
The Irishmen carried green flags into battle alongside the Stars and Stripes. Their distinctive green flags were adorned with the harp of Erin embroidered in gold, “with a sunburst above it and a wreath of shamrock below. Underneath, on a crimson scroll, in Irish characters, was the motto, `They shall never retreat from the charges of lances.’ “ The Irish were fighters, and Meagher led them in the Peninsula Campaign, and at Antietam, Fredricksburg and Chancellorsville. Before Antietam, Meagher displayed again the leadership and sense of style he had established in camp. One of his officers wrote, “On Wednesday, September 17, 1862, General Meagher, gotten up most gorgeous in a somewhat fancy uniform, with a gold shoulder belt, was carefully brushed by an orderly, and remarked that `we’d all have a brush soon.’ And we had it.”
At Antietam, Meagher and the Irish Brigade achieved immortality. Attacking the Sunken Road, the Irish Brigade’s hard fighting became the stuff of legend. Wrote Brevet Brig. Gen. Ezra Carman of the 12th New Jersey Volunteer Infantry, “The ranks of Meagher’s Brigade had been greatly thinned. The 69th New York had nearly melted away but a few heroic Irishmen were left, huddling about its two colors, when one of the enemy shouted from the Sunken road: `Bring them colors in here’; upon which the two color bearers instantly advanced a few steps, shook their colors in the very face of the enemy and replied: `Come and take them you damned rebels.’ “ Brigade historian ( great link ) David Conyngham tells the story from a different angle: ”The fight here was terrific. The rebels were entrenched and screened in the sunken road, all the time pouring a deadly fire into the advancing column of the Brigade. The green flag was completely riddled, and it appeared certain death to any one to bear it, for eight color-bearers had already fallen.” According to Mr. Conyngham, with the green flag of the Irish Brigade in the dirt, “Meagher called out `Boys, raise the colors, and follow me!’ ” Capt. James McGee took up the colors, and “as he raised it, a bullet cut the standard in two in his hand; and, as he again stooped down, another bullet tore through his cap. He jumped up, waved the flag, shook it at the rebels, and cheered on the troops.”
After seeing the Irish Brigade valiantly attack the formidable Rebel forces at Fredericksburg, Confederate Gen. George Pickett wrote to his fiancee, “The brilliant assault on Marye’s Heights of their Irish Brigade was beyond description. . . . We forgot they were fighting us, and cheer after cheer at their fearlessness went up all along our lines.” At Chancellorsville, an unknown writer described the attack of the Irish Brigade: “With Meagher at its head the brigade marched as coolly and steadily as if on parade. As we marched through the wood shot and shell were poured like hail upon us. When the General reached the end of the road he turned the head of the column and deployed into the woods. . . . Though the men were falling on every side, he boldly rode on . . .”
After Chancellorsville, Meagher intended to return to New York on a recruiting effort to refill his decimated ranks. Army leaders, including Secretary of War Edwin Stanton and Gen. Henry Halleck, did not agree. They needed Meagher and his men in the field. The hot-tempered Meagher resigned over the dispute, and the Irish Brigade continued toward Gettysburg without him.
It was an impetuous act, but not completely out of character for Meagher. Meagher sat out the war from May 1863 until he was reinstated at the end of 1864. He actively campaigned for President Abraham Lincoln and Vice President Andrew Johnson during the 1864 election. His military glory days were over, however.
After the war ended and Lincoln’s death, Johnson appointed Meagher as secretary of the Montana Territory. Gov. Sidney Edgerton had been using personal funds to run the territory. Upon Meagher’s arrival, the governor departed for the East, never to return. Meagher served as acting governor through 1866 and into summer 1867. In July 1867, Meagher fell from a riverboat during the night and drowned.
His body was never recovered. Historians debate his death as an accident that befell either a drunken man or a man seriously impaired by illness. A magnificent equestrian statue stands as a tribute to Meagher in Montana, far from any Civil War battlefield. He gave the nation the Irish Brigade – a unit filled with men who accredited themselves admirably throughout the Civil War. Confederate Gen. Robert E. Lee noted his respect for the Irish who served on both sides of the conflict: “The Irish soldier fights not so much for lucre as through the reckless love of adventure, and fights, moreover, with a chivalrous devotion to the cause he espouses.”
John E. Carey is a writer in Virginia. He is a descendant of the Corby family.

Thank you John for writing such a great piece, this was an awsome adventure sifting through the story and the links.

Link to original article (here)

Saturday, May 24, 2008

A Jesuit Doctor Of The Church On The Rosary

St. Robert Bellarmine, S.J.; "The Rosary, Are You A Friend Or Foe?"
Brethren, do we appreciate the full value of the Rosary? Are we its friends or are we its enemies? We are, you say, its friends, But alas! as many a man will say: "I am a Catholic, but I cannot say I practice my religion," so many of us will have to say: "I approve of the Rosary, but I cannot say I practice it." To each I say equally: "Stuff and nonsense; there is no Catholic but a practical Catholic, and there is no friend of the Rosary but he who practices it often and well." "He that is not with me is against me," is not less true of Christ than it is of the Church and the Rosary.
St. Robert Bellarmine - The Yoke Of Jesus
St. Robert Bellarmine Quote: The Role Of Mary
And still more.
Saint Robert Bellarmine "How Suffering Results In Greater Charity"
Thank you J.M.! Link to his St. Robert Bellermine blog post (here)
What is a Doctor of the Church? and why is Bellermine one of them? (here)

Mukasey Said BC Law Graduates Should Enter The Workforce Willing To Separate Their Political Views From Their Legal Opinions.

Mukasey tells BC grads not to shy from tough calls
By Megan Woolhouse
Globe Staff / May 24, 2008
NEWTON - With protesters gathered outside Boston College Law School, US Attorney General Michael B. Mukasey urged graduates yesterday not to shy away from difficult choices, including ones that challenge their ethics or lead to "relentless public criticism." more stories like this "If you do your job well, there will be times when you will have to advise clients that the law prohibits them from doing things that they want to do . . . [or] the right thing to do," Mukasey said. "And there will be times when you will have to advise clients that the law permits them to take actions that you may find imprudent or even wrong." Mukasey has sparked controversy by not taking any action in the national debate over what constitutes torture. At his confirmation hearings last fall, Mukasey refused to say whether he thought waterboarding, a simulated drowning technique the CIA has used, is legal.

Yesterday, 25 people wore orange prison jumpsuits to protest his speech and what they described as a US policy that condones torture. Christina Abbey, who wore a black hood over her head like those worn by some detainees during interrogations, said she felt deeply disturbed that the Jesuit college would invite Mukasey to be the keynote speaker at its graduation.

A member of the Catholic peace advocacy group Pax Christi of Boston, she drove from Revere to voice her objection. "A graduation speaker is supposed to be a good role model for the graduates," she said. "I just feel really upset about the fact that a Catholic institution would be putting this person up on the stage and saying, 'This is the thing to do.' " In his speech, Mukasey also defended former government lawyers who drew up the legal basis of the Bush administration's use of harsh interrogation methods against suspects after the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks, saying they should not be held liable or face criminal charges. Some of the lawyers are facing civil lawsuits, including John Yoo, a former deputy assistant attorney general who worked in the Justice Department's Office of Legal Counsel from 2001 to 2003.

Mukasey said graduates should enter the workforce willing to separate their political views from their legal opinions.

While he never mentioned waterboarding specifically, he acknowledged that the controversy over his actions, or lack thereof, triggered an angry response from some faculty and students. More than 20 faculty members had written him a letter asking him to decline the invitation. In the wake of the flap, law school administrators decided not to give its highest honor, the Founders Medal, to Mukasey, as well as all future commencement speakers.

Mukasey, a Yale Law School graduate, urged students yesterday to make decisions using "dispassionate and reasoned analysis." "You must do law even - you must do law especially - when the stakes are high and the pressures to do something else are tremendous," he said.

"Nowhere are the stakes higher and the pressures greater than when the subject is national security, where . . . the questions are as complex and consequential as they come." Peter Sollins, 32, one of the law school graduates, said he "didn't have a problem" with Mukasey's views or his speech. "Everyone knows what his politics are," he said. "I didn't have a problem with him talking about politically charged issues." But graduate Josmár Ronan criticized Mukasey's speech as too political. "The message I heard is that being a lawyer is regurgitating the law," she said. "That's not what you expect to hear at a first-rate law school. Our calling is much higher."

Link (here)

Friday, May 23, 2008

16th Century Jesuit And His Missionary Zeal In Wisconsin

As early as the mid-1600s Madeline Island was visited by Europeans -
the first known were Pierre-Esprit Radisson and Medard Chouart Des Groseilliers - who came seeking the furs that fueled the economy of fledgling New France. The island and surrounding Chequamegon Bay region quickly became a major trade center for the French and resident Ojibwe Indians.

Father Claude Jean Allouez, the Jesuit missionary, spent several years on the island, where he built the first Christian chapel in Wisconsin.

More traders followed, first French but later British, and in 1816 John Jacob Astor's American Fur Co. established a presence on Madeline. Later, commercial fishermen from Scandinavian countries operated from Madeline and surrounding ports and lumbering prospered as well until the forests were played out.

Link to full article (here)
This from New Advent

Allouez laboured among the Indians for thirty-two years. He was sixty-nine years old when he died, worn out by his heroic labours. He preached the Gospel to twenty different tribes, and is said to have baptized 10,000 neophytes with his own hand.
He took charge of, and put on a firm basis the famous Kaskaskian mission, which death had compelled Marquette to relinquish. None of the missionaries of his time dared more or travelled over a wider territory than Allouez.
He even reached the western end of Lake Superior. His life was one alternation of triumphs and defeats. At times he had to prevent the Indians from adoring him as a god; at others they were about to sacrifice him to their deities. Link (here)
Painting is of a Kaskaskia Indian

The Spiritual Exercises Of St. Ignatius

Jesuit center retreats continue next month
The Jesuit Spirituality Center in Grand Coteau will hold individually directed eight-day retreats. The next sessions are June 2-11, June 16-25, June 3-July 9. Participants may stay for the full eight days or opt for a three-day or five-day retreat, with the same beginning dates as the extended sessions. The fee for attending the eight-day retreat is $480; the five-day retreat is $300 and the three-day retreat is $180. A $50 non-refundable deposit is required. The deposit will be applied toward entry fees.
Information: 337-662-5251 or go to
Link (here)

Thursday, May 22, 2008

New Provincial For The Phillppines

Excerpt from Fr. Daniel Huang's letter
dated 10 May 2008:
It is with great joy and gratitude to the Lord that I wish to announce that, in his letter dated 9 May 2008, Fr. General Adolfo Nicolas has “decided in the Lord to appoint” as the next Provincial of the Philippine Province
In his letter, Fr. General asks me to extend his “thanks and encouragement to Fr. Magadia as he prepares to assume this very important service to the universal Society, and to his Jesuit brethren and all your lay colleagues in the Philippine Province and its apostolates.” Fr. Magadia will assume office some time in early June, after his Installation, the date of which be announced to the Province soon. In the meantime, I wish to join Fr. General in thanking Fr. Magadia for his generous availability for this new mission. I ask too that, on the eve of the feast of Pentecost, we pray in a special way that the gifts of the Holy Spirit be poured out in abundance on our new Provincial, so that he might know the “love, joy, [and] peace” (Gal. 5: 22) which are the first fruits of the Spirit’s presence.
Fraternally in our Lord,

Link (here)

TV Personality Leslie Stahl Is Tongue Tied At Commencement Speech

While giving a commencement speech at the Jesuit-run Loyola College in Maryland, Leslie Stahl said "pusillanimous," adding that "it doesn't have nothing to do with "p---y." She then tried to say that she said pussycat, but it was too late for the innocent ears of the graduates' parents. Link (here)
From the Greyhound comes a nice article on her selection and the process of selecting a commencement speaker (here)

Wednesday, May 21, 2008

A Changing Of The Guard In Florida

At Jesuit High School, a fond goodbye
Father Joseph Doyle retires from Jesuit High School of Tampa.
In a May 9 letter to parents, Father Joseph Doyle wrote, “During my time here, I have sought to care for your sons, encourage them, and also provide strong discipline for them,” he wrote. “You gave me the opportunity to have the ‘sons’ I could never have as a celebate.”
As president of Tampa Jesuit High School, Father Joseph Doyle opposed the building of a 60-foot-high, four-column bell tower as part of an $8 million capital campaign that brought new buildings and extensive site upgrades to the Catholic school a few years ago. “He wasn’t in favor of the bell tower, but the students were,” said Jesuit principal Joseph Sabin. “There was one vote for no, and that was his.” Perhaps the Jesuit priest will become fonder of the centerpiece now that he is so much a part of it.

The president’s relic of St. Claude la Colombiere, a 17th-century Jesuit, has been cemented into the tower; Father Doyle’s name will join those of Jesuit teachers and saints engraved on its bricks.

Those tributes were part of the school’s goodbye to its longest-reigning president, who retired in May after a dozen years of leadership. The people of Jesuit had long planned a proper retirement celebration. What no one anticipated was that Father Doyle, 71, and a Jesuit of almost 50 years, would suffer a stroke six weeks before he was set to step down. The effects of the stroke slowed the president’s walk at the event. His voice, known for its ability to project and persuade, was soft when he addressed Bishop Robert N. Lynch, area priests, the Jesuit community and other friends who came to say goodbye. “(Bishop Lynch) delivered a beautiful homily about Father Doyle, and you could tell it was absolutely heartfelt,” Sabin said. “The number of people who came out, it was a tribute as to how many people and how many souls he touched here.”

At the retirement ceremony, the principal recalled Father Doyle’s first days at Jesuit in the mid-60s. He was Mr. Doyle then, a young man in formation with the Jesuits, at the school teaching English to Sabin and his classmates. “Father Doyle has a gift for speaking, for finding just the right words. It was evident years ago as much as it is today,” the principal said. “He was different than the other Jesuit scholastics at the time. He had a New York accent. He had premature white hair.

Mr. Doyle was tough but also dedicated to helping the students. He would tutor them in any subject in which they were stuggling. “He grew very close to the guys back then,” the principal said. “A lot of them still come by to see him, or write, and so on.” The priest was presented with several gifts. He learned that the school had raised $85,000 toward a $175,000 endowment that would provide enough money to fund a scholarship for one student a year who could not otherwise attend the school due to a lack of financial resources. “His goal has been to keep Jesuit affordable for our students,” the principal said at the goodbye. “He has worked hard to increase the amount of financial aid available to make it possible for academically capable students of limited financial means to attend and enrich this school.” The priest also was given a quilt created by Linda Eisenhart, the school’s adviser for development. The quilt contains the name of every student who attended Jesuit during the years the priest served as a teacher and president. It also displayed photos from the school’s past. Father Doyle wrote a letter to school parents May 9. In it, he thanked the Jesuit family for his goodbye celebration. He thanked parents for sending their sons to the school and said he felt like a father to the boys. “During my time here, I have sought to care for your sons, encourage them, and also provide strong discipline for them,” he wrote. “You gave me the opportunity to have the ‘sons’ I could never have as a celebate.” He said he would work hard to recover and return to serve as a priest in the Tampa Bay community. He also reflected on the stroke.

“In some ways having a stroke is not that bad.” he said. “St. Ignatius said that you have to learn how to be dependent, and through your humility you can receive care from others as a gift of love.

Father Doyle has left Tampa for Louisiana. Sabin said his leadership will be missed. History will recall his brick-and-mortar successes, the principal said, but his friends will recall so much more. “He was so many things to so many different people: a confidant, a confessor, a priest … a friend,” the principal said. “He probably touched my life in every one of those areas.” “Father Doyle leaves Jesuit a better school than when he arrived.” Jesuit Father Richard Hermes, 44, pastor of Immaculate Conception Parish in New Orleans, will replace Father Doyle as president of Jesuit High. His term begins at the end of May.

Link to the Florida Catholic article (here)

Tuesday, May 20, 2008

When Central Florida Was Jesuit Mission Territory

St. Clement Church history began in 1912
with a Mass celebrated in the home of Mr. and Mrs. R. W. Burch on East Baker Street in Plant City. The celebrant was the Rev. Alfred Latiolais, S.J., Director of Jesuit Missions in central Florida.

Jesuit priests first were assigned to central Florida in 1888, at the request of Bishop John Moore of the Diocese of St. Augustine.

Yellow Fever had taken the lives of three Tampa priests within an eleven month period. Bishop Moore also was recovering from Yellow Fever, at the time, and had no more priests to assign to Tampa. He asked the New Orleans Jesuit Province to send a Spanish speaking priest to Saint Louis Church in Tampa.

The Rev. Philip de Carriere, S.J., (excellent link) a survivor of Yellow Fever, volunteered to respond to the request. The 63 year old priest made a solitary trip from New Orleans through quarantined areas, arriving in October, 1888. His church in Tampa, the small, wooden St. Louis Catholic Church, located on the site of the present Sacred Heart Church, was Tampa's oldest Catholic church.

It was dedicated in 1859 in honor of the Rev. Luis Cancer, a Spanish Dominican priest, who was martyred on the shores of Tampa Bay three hundred years earlier. Father de Carriere and four Sisters of the Holy Names spent the next year ministering to approximately 2,000 Catholics who lived in Tampa and Ybor City. They also ministered to an equal number of suffering people of other faiths. All other clergy had succumbed to Yellow Fever or had fled the city. In recognition of this heroic work, Bishop Moore asked the New Orleans Jesuit Province to assume the spiritual care of all Catholics in south central Florida.

The Rev. John Quinlan, S.J. arrived in 1889 to relieve Father de Carriere and to establish a Mother House in Tampa, for the Jesuit mission area, which now includes all of Hillsborough, Polk, De Soto, Manatee, Osceola, Lee and Dade Counties.

Kith the establishment of the Mother House, Jesuit priests began fifty years of mission service in central Florida and also began a continuous ministry of Jesuit pastors at Sacred Heart Church in Tampa. The Rev. Alfred Latiolais was the most active of the many Jesuit priests who served central Florida between 1889 and 1939. Father Latiolais personally supervised the establishment of eleven mission churches between 1912 and 1923, including the Plant City Holy Name of Jesus mission church.

Before 1912 other Jesuit priests had stopped occasionally in Plant City on their way to missions in Polk County. Rev. William Tyrell S.J. reported to his Superior in 1893 that he had stopped in Plant City but found no Catholics.

Few Catholic families were living in Plant City at the turn of the century. Mrs. Earl Mays, a pioneer Catholic resident, reported that she came to Plant City as a bride in 1908 and found no Catholic church. She attended Sacred Heart Church in Tampa until 1912 when Father Latiolais began monthly Masses in private homes. Upon his arrival in Plant City in 1912, Father Latiolais requested that a census be taken of all Catholic families living in eastern Hillsborough County. Dr. Butler Sanchez and Mr. John Fitzgerald completed the census. The results of that survey indicated the need for a monthly Mass in Plant City. Mrs. Butler H. Sanchez stated in a letter dated June 6, 1955,

"When I came to Plant City as a bride in 1915 there were less than a dozen Catholic families. We met in the home of Mrs. R. W. Burch (deceased now) on Baker Street about six blocks east of where the church now is. We only had Mass once a month. Fr. Latiolais from Tampa was our priest (Jesuit)."

For four years Fr. Latiolais traveled from Tampa to Plant City to celebrate monthly Mass. In 1916 he invited all Catholics in eastern Hillsborough County to meet at the Plant City armory to determine if there would be enough support to establish a mission church. Dr. Butler Sanchez had kept contact with Catholic families through visits and sick calls and had recently met with Catholic members of the large Hungarian community west of town. He invited them to the armory meeting. The Hungarian families greatly enlarged the attendance at the meeting, assuring Father Latiolais of future support of a mission church. He petitioned the New Orleans Province for permission to establish a Plant City mission but four more years passed before the church was dedicated in 1920. The monthly Masses continued in private Plant City homes.
For several years they were held in the home of Mrs. Thomas Surrency on the corner of Baker and Thomas Streets. When she moved away the Jesuit Province granted permission to purchase the small, frame house for a permanent church. St. Clements Catholic Church, originally Holy Name of Jesus Mission, first met in this former residence of Mrs. Thomas Surrency at the site of the brick church.

Several generous donations were received for that purpose. Mr. and Mrs. R. Burch gave $1,000. Mr. John Fitzgerald gave $500. Two anonymous donors gave money and land and the Extension Society of Chicago gave $1,000. On April 30, 1920 the Surrency property was purchased for $2,750. When renovations were completed in November, Father Alfred Latiolais returned to Plant City to bless and dedicate the building as the Holy Name of Jesus mission church. Only a few of the Jesuit priests who served as pastor of the Holy Name mission church have been identified. In addition to Fr. Latiolais, the first assigned pastor was the Rev. William A. Fillinger, S.J. The Rev. Michael McNally, S.J. was pastor when the church property was purchased.

Sometime in the 1920's the Rev. Felix J. Clarkson, S.J. served as pastor. He was also pastor of Sacred Heart Church in Tampa, 1935-1939. The little Holy Name of Jesus Mission church, commonly called the Surrency house church, served Plant City's Catholic families until 1929.

That year the Bishop of St. Augustine formed a new parish for Catholics living in eastern Hillsborough and western Polk County. Boundaries of the new Bartow-Plant City parish extended east from Tampa to the area around Bartow. Father John J. Mullins was appointed founding pastor in October, 1929. Father Mullins elected to reside in Bartow but began his duties in Plant City almost immediately. An item in the Plant City Courier in October, 1929 stated that, beginning in November, 1929 Father John J. Mullins would be in Plant City every Saturday afternoon from 4 to 5 o'clock to conduct Catechism classes and would be present each Sunday morning to celebrate Mass at 10 o'clock.The change from mission church to parish church was appreciated by the Catholic families of Plant City. The mission church had been a blessing to the small, isolated Catholic community in 1912, but by 1929 Plant City was a progressive town with a growing Catholic population. The limited religious and spiritual offerings of the mission church no longer met the needs of the Catholic families in the area. Read the rest (here).
Photo is of Fr. Alfred Latiolais

Jesuit Cyber Tour

Meet James Martin
From the executive fast track at GE to ordination as a Jesuit priest, James Martin leads a rather exciting life. His ministry as a Jesuit has brought him to the slums of Nairobi, the projects of inner-city Chicago, and now to a media career in Manhattan. It’s not uncommon to find Fr. Martin on the Colbert Report, CNN, The New York Times editorial page, or advising a theater cast. Why?
As Fr. Martin says, “being a Jesuit has helped me to find God in all things and to experience Jesus as my friend. And so my vocation as a Jesuit is one of the greatest gifts I've ever received from God."
Read more about Fr. Martin’s life and award-winning books My Life with the Saints and A Jesuit Off-Broadway. Saints in Cyberspace: Join Fr. Martin on his Saint blog tour! During the first week of June, Fr. Martin will be visiting a different blog each day to chat with you about the saints, becoming a saint through your everyday life, and much more. Be sure to visit the hosting blogs on the designated day, comment away, and let the inspiration begin!
June 2
Some Have Hats , Karen Hall's post on the tour (here)
June 3
A Nun’s Life , Sister Julie's post (here).
June 4
The Dawn Patrol , Dawn Eden's post on the tour (here)
June 5
The Anchoress , Elizabeth Scaliaha has yet to comment.
June 6
Happy Catholic , Julie D's post on the tour (here)
Here are my questions for Fr. James?
How come only "girl" Catholic blogs?
In your book In Good Company, looking back is there anything you would like to change?
Has Pedro Arrupe been placed in the conical process of sainthood? If not, why is he in a book about Catholic saints?
Why are Arrupe and Teilhard, more important to liberal Jesuits than real Jesuit saints like; Borja, Xavier, Pignatelli and Colombiere? Are the Catholic faithful and the Society being short changed with the constant promotional push to elevate Arrupe and Teilhard to an unwarranted quasi sainthood?
Thomas Merton is a subject in your book. Could please explain why Merton most likely will not be a canonized Catholic saint?