Saturday, August 30, 2008

"May Day! May Day! Houston, We Have A Problem!"

This photograph was taken at the Jesuit ordination Mass in 1925 at Georgetown University. Please notice the fiddleback vestments of the Traditional Latin Mass and the lay faithful kneeling and awaiting the new ordained Jesuit priests first blessings.
This past summer only 2 Jesuits were ordained into the priesthood in the New York Province and another two Jesuits were ordained in the Maryland Province, that is a 90% decrease in vocations.
There is a serious vocational crisis for the Society in the United States, what can be done about this and what are the causes of this problem? The GC 35 decrees point out the problems and the solutions very clearly, but is the Society in America implementing any of the decrees? In my 15 year walk with the Jesuits, there seems to be two broad categories of Jesuits: the first are for a lack of a better term
"Old School Jesuits" these Jesuits relate to the world through Ignatius' Spiritual Exercises, and the second "New School Jesuits", which tend to relate to the world through Teilhardism and Liberation Theology, they often have a flexible and even a syncranistic interpretation of the Spiritual Exercises.
It is also my experience that the "New School Jesuits" out numbers the "Old School Jesuits" hence, dominate the Ignatian message. You can see this transformation played out in the pages of the Jesuits leading publication America Magazine in the editorial and theological positions of today (Fr. Reece and Fr. Christiansen) verses, say fifty years ago (Fr. Hartnett) , are nearly unrecognizable to each other and even contradictory. It is my opinion that the "New School" Jesuits have diminished the Society's ability to evangelize, making it harder to win for Christ, Catholic converts and new members to the Society of Jesus.

Read the rookie Jesuit priest Fr. Mark Mossa's post entitled, Back in the Day Fr. Mark gives his own read on the 1925 Georgetown picture and Jesuit vocations then and now.

Agustino And The Jesuits In Kenya

It was our last day in the Kenyan capital before heading south to Tanzania. After breakfast at the Methodist guesthouse where we were staying, I checked my e-mail and found a note from my dear friend in New York City, the Jesuit priest and author Jim Martin. He'd heard that I was traveling in Kenya and asked me, if time allowed, to please stop by the Jesuit Refugee Service where he lived in the 1990s.
During his tenure in Nairobi, Jim opened a shop called the Mikono Centre at the Jesuit compound where refugee artisans sell their wares.
Our agenda for the day was pretty full, but we decided to swing by the shop on our way to visit some new friends in Kibera, one of two enormous slums in the city not far from the Jesuit Refugee Service. While we were browsing at Mikono through racks of textiles and paintings depicting African scenes and spiritual tableaus -- I purchased a nativity set made entirely from banana leaves -- the shop clerk asked if we'd like to see some of the artists at work.
One of their most popular artists, she told us, was working on a carving in a building a few yards away. "His name is Agostino," the clerk said.
Hearing that name felt like a thunderbolt had hit the ground. Agostino! Jim had mentioned his name to me with so much love. He'd written about Agostino in his wonderful book This Our Exile: A Spiritual Journey with the Refugees of East Africa. Jim had discovered Agostino, a refugee who had fled to Kenya from his native Mozambique, carving rosewood sculptures on a mat outside an office building in downtown Nairobi. Jim invited Agostino to sculpt at the Jesuit compound and sell his pieces at Mikono. He was one of the first artists to do a booming business and gather a following of patrons -- a man whose faith, as well as his artistry, had so inspired my friend the priest, and one of the center's great success stories. I bolted out the door toward the building where the clerk said Agostino was carving. As I turned the corner, there he was, bent over a piece of ebony wood propped up on a broad stump that served as his workbench.
He looked exactly as Jim had described him, a bear of a man with liquid eyes, soulful and with a quiet strength, like a living saint.
When I introduced myself and told him I brought greetings from Jim, he beamed. "Please tell Father Jim that it's a good thing he started Mikono all those years ago," he said. "Now we have children and some of them are in school, and they're in school because of this." When Agostino said "this," he motioned to the piece he had just finished carving and was beginning to stain with a delicate, long-handled brush. It was the figure of a small black child pressing his face and hands into the palm of a giant man's hand. Even in its unfinished state, it was breathtaking. We asked Agostino when he thought he would complete the sculpture and told him we would like to buy it and take it home with us. He said he could finish it by that evening. We agreed on a price and told him how glad we were to meet him and how thrilled Jim would be that we had been able to see him.
As we turned to leave, I asked if the sculpture had a name. "Yes," Agostino said quietly. "I call it 'Hand of God.' "
When we returned that night to collect the Hand of God, Agostino was gone and the sculpture was wrapped in paper and packed carefully in a bag for our travel the next morning. I don't recall how many days later we opened the package to take a better look at the piece, but when we did, we found an added surprise. On the bottom of the sculpture, next to where he'd signed his name and the date, Agostino had carved a Scripture reference from the 49th chapter of the book of Isaiah. We took out our Bible and looked it up. This is what it said: "Can a mother forget the baby at her breast and have no compassion on the child she has borne? Though she may forget, I will not forget you! See, I have engraved you on the palm of my hands."

Link to the full article Why Jesus has great hands by CATHLEEN FALSANI
Photo is of Fr Jim Martin, S.J. in his early years (here)

Friday, August 29, 2008

The Tale Of The Two Obama's

First, Micheal Sean Winter's at America Magazine's blog In All Things, his post is entitled Obama's big night in Denver. Second, from The Atlantic's senior editor Ross Douthat's, Obama's Night. Their is a big difference in the two views and points out the editorial and political bias at America. Jesuit's aren't just for liberal Democrat's, Republican's need Jesuits too.
A hat tip to Paul Snatchko and his post entitled, Missing the Rhetoric.

Seven New Jesuits In California

Brendan Busse, 30, from Los Angeles, California, has a BA in English from Loyola Marymount University. He taught religion at a high school in Greater Los Angeles and did Jesuit Volunteers International Belize for two years. Most recently, he has been working in Campus Ministry at LMU as Director of Community Service and Social Justice. He enjoys reading, writing, film, playing the guitar, and travel.

Andrew Laguna, 21, from Chino Hills, California, has a BS in biological sciences from the University of California, Irvine. He has helped as a retreat leader with the confirmation program at his parish and has worked as a barista for a well-known coffee seller. Andrew enjoys running, soccer, and reading.

Curtis Leighton, 24, from Seattle, Washington, has a BA in English from the University of Notre Dame. After graduation, he worked for the past two years as a teacher at a grade school in Gilroy, California, for the “Teach for America” program. Curtis enjoys hiking and other outdoor activities, cooking, and American Literature.

Alex Llanera, 20, from Sacramento, California, went to Jesuit High School in Sacramento and has a bachelor’s degree with majors in political science and theological studies from Loyola Marymount University. He organized a service trip for LMU students to the Philippines. His interests include playing cards, politics, recreational reading, and working out.

Justin Mungal, 23, from Santa Clara, California, has a BA in statistics from UC Berkeley. He worked briefly as a high school math teacher in El Paso, Texas, for the “Teach for America” program. He enjoys traveling and spent two months on a backpacking trip through Australia. Justin also enjoys swimming and playing the drums and is learning to play the guitar.

Travis Russell, 23, from Roseburg, Oregon, has a BS in global security and intelligence studies from Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University in Prescott, Arizona. He has done volunteer work in his parish. Travis is interested in aviation and Islamic culture; in his free time he enjoys biking, hiking, scuba diving, and golf.

Robert Van Alstyne, 22, from San Carlos, California, has a bachelor’s degree in philosophy from Boston College. He has worked as a lifeguard and swim instructor, as a counselor at a summer youth camp, and as a volunteer tutor for middle-school students. He enjoys swimming, playing acoustic guitar, singing, hiking, camping, reading, and listening to classical music.

Link to the post entitled Meet the new California Jesuit Novices at the blog The Tech Stop.

Jesuit Educated Atheist

Bob Tiernan is an agnostic. "I'm not a hard-core atheist", he says. He was raised a Catholic and went to Jesuit College (LeMoyne College) and law school (Boston College Law). He is a practicing lawyer who specializes in issues involving separation of church and state. He is also a Democrat. This week he was in Denver to protest what he sees as the dangerous mixing of religion and politics, and the sad exclusion of non-believers in a party known for its inclusiveness.
Robert R. Tiernan is an evangelist of atheism at the Freedom From Religion Foundation
Link to the full article/blog post by Sally Quinn entitled, Atheists: The Last Political Outcasts

Thursday, August 28, 2008

Fr. Thomas Reese, S.J. On Abortion and Politics

The Rev. Thomas Reese, senior fellow at the Woodstock Theological Center at Georgetown University, has some advice for candidates who seek to join the debate: Stick to politics - and support programs that truly help reduce the number of abortions.

"It is a big mistake," Reese said, "for politicians to talk theology." Link (here)

Unmissionable And Disobedient

New Book by Peace Activist Priest John Dear, SJ, Recounts Life of Civil Disobedience
By Michelle Halm, Senior Marketing Coordinator, Loyola Press

An excerpt.

Fr. John Dear, S.J. has organized hundreds of demonstrations against war and nuclear weapons. His work has taken him to war zones around the world, including Iraq, where he led a delegation of Nobel Peace Prize winners to witness the effects of sanctions on Iraqi children. It hasn't been an easy life.

His activism was generally not supported by his superiors, and he was considered "unmissionable" and "disobedient" by one Jesuit superior.
But for Dear, commitment to nonviolence is an all-or-nothing proposition. A Persistent Peace is the story of his consistent and tireless work for peace, including his arrests and imprisonments, death threats made against him for criticizing the military (including a threat from the father of one of his students at a Jesuit high school, who threatened to shoot him dead in front of his class), and many other amazing stories of social action for peace.

Link to the full publicity piece (here)

The Dauphin A Supporter Of The Jesuits

Louis the Dauphin was the only son of Louis XV and the father of three kings of France, including Louis XVI. According to Wikipedia:
Louis was rather plump. He was well educated: a studious man, cultivated, and a lover of music, he preferred the pleasures of conversation to those of hunting, balls, or spectacles. With a keen sense of morality, he was very much committed to his wife, Marie-Josèphe, as she was to him. Very devout, he was a fervent supporter of the Jesuits, like his mother and sisters, and was led by them to have a devotion to the Sacred Heart. He appeared in the eyes of his sisters as the ideal of the Christian prince, in sharp contrast with their father who was a notorious womanizer.

Kept away from government affairs by his father, Louis was at the center of the Dévots, a group of religiously-minded men who hoped to gain power when he succeeded to the throne. (more)

Hat Tip de Brantigny at le fleur de lys too and a Merci to Tea at Trianon

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Jesuit To Lead Prayer At Republican National Convention

I would love to be sitting at the table at Norma's restaurant, the tony diner around the corner of the offices of the Jesuit's leading magazine America. I can just imagine the America staffers enjoying some lunch conversation about a Jesuit speaking at the upcoming Republican National Convention. The Jesuit just so happens to be America's former embattled editor, Fr. Thomas J. Reese, S.J. brother, Fr. Edward (Eddie) A. Reese, S.J. president of Brophy College Preparatory in Phoenix, Father will give the opening invocation at the Republican National Convention in Minneapolis-St. Paul on September 3. The McCain's two sons went to Brophy College Preparatory, and Cindy McCain is a member of Brophy's board of regents.

Hat Tip to Fr. James Martin, S.J. read his full post entitled, Jesuit to Pray at GOP Convention.

More (here) from CNS

A Celebration of 90 Years

From City and the World, Jesuit Joe brings us a his personal perspective and pictures his post Dulles 90th.

Fordham's own Avery Cardinal Dulles celebrated his ninetieth birthday today in the company of family, friends and brother Jesuits. As I mentioned in a previous post, I had the good fortune of taking part in the final seminar that Cardinal Dulles offered as Fordham's McGinley Professor of Religion and Society; wanting to pay my respects to a great theologian and a fine teacher, I made a point of attending the
Mass of Thanksgiving offered today in celebration of the Cardinal's nine decades of life. At an outdoor reception following the Mass, New York Archbishop Edward Cardinal Egan offered tribute to Dulles and led the assembled company in a birthday toast.
As you can see in the second photo from the top, the ordinary also took the lead in cutting the birthday cake. I like the fourth photo because it appears to show Cardinal Egan pointing at the camera; in fact, the Archbishop of New York was pointing to lend emphasis to something he was saying as part of a humorous anecdote regarding his personal history with Cardinal Dulles - an anecdote that Dulles and the audience seem to have appreciated, given their smiles and laughter.

The New Fordham Campus,"Westchester"

C.W. Brown completes $8 million renovation for Fordham University at 400 Westchester Ave.

The lobby at Fordham Westchester
The lobby at Fordham Westchester

White Plains, NY Fordham University, the country's leading Jesuit university, recently relocated its Westchester campus to 400 Westchester Ave., completing a full interior renovation of the building.
The University signed a 20 year full-building lease. 400 Westchester Ave., formerly the site of NYNEX Corporation's headquarters,
is owned by a private partnership among the principles of White Plains-based GHP Office Realty and Benerofe Properties, and was acquired by the owners in 2007 from Verizon as part of a 25 building, multi-state portfolio. Set on 32 landscaped acres in White Plains, Fordham Westchester is a three-story, 62,500 s/f building that houses the University's adult undergraduate program as well as its graduate schools of Social Service, Religion and Religious Education, Education, and Business Administration.
Fordham Westchester at 400 Westchester Avenue conveniently sits on White Plains' "platinum mile"
- the most accessible location from all areas of the county, as well as nearby Fairfield County, Conn. Immediate access to both public transportation and every major thoroughfare in the county will allow Fordham to expand its existing Westchester base by attracting students from every direction.
Read the full article (here)

Tuesday, August 26, 2008

Denver Bishops Rebuke Nancy Pelosi And Refer To Jesuit On Abortion

Bishops Correct Speaker Nancy Pelosi: 'On the Separation of Sense and State'
By Archbishop Charles J. Chaput, O.F.M. Cap. and
Bishop James D. Conley
An excerpt.
Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi is a gifted public servant of strong convictions and many professional skills. Regrettably, knowledge of Catholic history and teaching does not seem to be one of them......Speaker Pelosi has, in her words, studied the issue "for a long time," she must know very well one of the premier works on the subject, Jesuit John Connery's Abortion: The Development of the Roman Catholic Perspective (and here) (Loyola, 1977). Here's how Connery concludes his study:

"The Christian tradition from the earliest days reveals a firm antiabortion attitude . . . The condemnation of abortion did not depend on and was not limited in any way by theories regarding the time of fetal animation. Even during the many centuries when Church penal and penitential practice was based on the theory of delayed animation, the condemnation of abortion was never affected by it.

"Whatever one would want to hold about the time of animation, or when the fetus became a human being in the strict sense of the term, abortion from the time of conception was considered wrong, and the time of animation was never looked on as a moral dividing line between permissible and impermissible abortion."

Link (here) to the full article about Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi.

Jesuits And The History Of Lacrosse

How to Play a Better Game of Lacrosse
by Tate Palumb

Lacrosse is a game rich in history, involving a stick and rubber ball. First created by North American Indians in the 15th century, this game was a favorite pastime for recreation. However, the Indians soon discovered that the game was physically demanding, making it a great training tool for teaching the warriors to fight. Nowadays Lacrosse players use a titanium stick and rubber ball. In the early years the sticks were wooden.

Back then as many as 1,000 would join in a single game that often lasted for three days. Matches would start as soon as the sun came up and go on until it was dark. Trees and rocks became the goals and they were between 500 yards and a half mile apart.
French Jesuit missionaries knew the game by the 17th century and in time the rest of the world learned of it. Lacrosse is still enjoyed in the United States, Canada, England, Ireland, Australia, and Scotland among other nations. It’s a rough game involving both thinking and physical stamina. This article offers a few tips for playing the game well
Link (here)

Monday, August 25, 2008

Were Is That Found In The Ratio Studiorum?

LGBTQ Center Finds Leadership
Aug 22 2008

An excerpt.

As painters work to put the finishing touches on the newly created LGBTQ Resource Center, the center’s first director, Sivagami Subbaraman, has been working to make a presence for the center as students arrive back to campus. Subbaraman arrived at Georgetown four weeks ago to begin preparing the center, located adjacent to the Women’s Center on the third floor of the Leavey Center.

Read the full press release from Georgetown's website (here)

Diogenes lets it go (here)

The Ratio Studiorum (here)

Sebastian Rale Jesuit Martyr ,"They Took His Scalp"

From a Catholic Democrat from Ohio
The border of what came to be the maritime provinces of Canada and New England was not fixed until 1842. The first half of the 18th century, the territory was disputed between French l’Acadie and English Massachusetts, and of course there were the aboriginals. There is the high school history question, “Who won the French and Indian War†?” Well, those were not the competitors, but the allied opponents of the British empire, of which the colonies, which were to form the United States, were a part.
In that territory, the French and the Indians were united in faith. That faith, was the ancient faith that was demonised by the Calvinists of Massachusetts.
Because of the valuable timber and furs that were coveted, and the fear of enemies that the English had, there was always a war looming.
Nanrantsouak/Norridgewock was the principle village of the Abenaki/Wabanaki/Abernaquois on the Kennebec.
The Christian, Catholic, identification of the area’s Indians began with the Passamaquoddy in 1604 and later with the Penobscot and Abenaki. Sébastien Râle S.J.*1652, came to Quebec in 1689, and to the Abenaki in 1695 where he founded a chapel (to replace a previously burned church) and school, which the english first burned with the village in 1705. L’Acadie was lost (when the War of Spanish Succession, ended with the Treaty of Utrecht 1713), and English settlement approached the Abenaki. It was, specifically, illegal to be a priest in the colony of Massachusetts, the repeated presence was a capital crime. More than one expedition was made to execute the law, on Father Râle.
Samuel Shute, governor of Massachusetts, discharged the expedition to take care of Râle, when the English made war|| on the Abenaki, in 1722. It was the first war, in which, an American government offered a bounty on scalps.
The English and their colonists always feared, and entertained conspiracies of Indians, Frenchmen, Spaniards and Catholics, and hated all of them, and coveted their possessions. Râle was a Frenchman, a Catholic, a priest, a Jesuit (the most hated and feared of catholics) and a major figure amongst the Indians. All these earned him martyrdom. On August 23rd, 1724 the Massachusetts militia caught their prey. The accounts differ widely based on partisanship, but his scalp was a prized trophy, along with other items.
The oldest account, includes that, he was shot dead, in front of an outdoor cross. Forty years later, the English provided another account. When the survivors returned, they found his grossly, mutilated body and buried him, where the altar had been. A ‘fama sanctitatis’ (reputation for holiness) began among the Abenaki, concerning Râle, and remains. The requirements, to be recognised, as a martyr are, that he willingly risked life, with fervor for the faith, to those ‘in odium fidei’ (hatred of the faith).

Hat Tip to A Catholic democrat From Ohio (here)

Sunday, August 24, 2008

A Jesuit's Vow

Almighty and eternal God, I, Matthew Ian Edmund Dunch, understand how unworthy I am in your divine sight. Yet I am strengthened by your infinite compassion and mercy, and I am moved by the desire to serve you. I vow to your divine Majesty, before the most holy Virgin Mary and the entire heavenly court, perpetual chastity, poverty, and obedience in the Society of Jesus. I promise that I will enter this same Society to spend my life in it forever. I understand all these things according to the Constitutions of the Society of Jesus. Therefore, by your boundless goodness and mercy, and through the blood of Jesus Christ, I humbly ask that you judge this total commitment of myself acceptable. And as you have freely given me the desire to make this offering, so also may you give me the abundant grace to fulfill it.

At Detroit, Michigan, chapel of the North American Martyrs, University of Detroit Jesuit High School and Academy, on the 16th of August in the year 2008.

Link (here)

BC Professor On John Paul II And Abortion

Lisa Sowle Cahill, a theology professor at Jesuit-run Boston College, noted that Pope John Paul II wrote that whatever the local abortion laws might be “ there’s still an obligation to work in all kinds of ways to protect the unborn.”
Link (here)

Saturday, August 23, 2008

"Spectaculum Facti Sumus Deo, Angelis Et Hominibus"

The English Jesuit priest Edmund Campion was executed in London in December 1581. Standing on the scaffold with the noose round his neck, he began to speak: "Spectaculum facti sumus Deo, angelis et hominibus".
These are the words of St Paul, Englished thus: "We are made a spectacle unto God, unto his angels and unto men, verified this day in me, who am here a spectacle unto my Lord God, a spectacle unto his angels and unto you men..." At this point he was cut short.
Nowadays, sporting events are almost the only occasions when we can enjoy physical endurance as a spectacle. In the days of public executions, the repertoire was wider. When the Catholic Campion was condemned for plotting against Queen Elizabeth, his hanging, drawing and quartering was a show – justice being seen to be done. But more than that, as Campion's speech makes clear, it was a show in which both the authorities and the victim had an interest. From one point of view, here was a heretic-traitor, receiving his due and horrible destruction. From the other, here was a martyr, bearing witness to the end. The spectacle of punishment and the spectacle of enduring faith are one.

Link (here) to the full article.

The Shrine Of St. Joseph In St. Louis: Founded By The Jesuits

This beautiful old church, at the corner of 11th Street and Biddle in St. Louis, Missouri has a vast and interesting history. The church had its beginning in 1843. The Jesuits founded the parish to serve a pleasant residential community consisting mostly of German immigrants. Also, the church is the site of the only authenticated miracle in the Midwest.

After founding the parish in 1843, the Jesuits immediately began plans for building a church. Mrs. Ann Biddle, a wealthy widow, known for her many philanthropic deeds, donated the land for the new church. The cornerstone was blessed by Bishop Kenrick on April 14, 1844. The completed structure was a modest building facing west toward 11th Street. It was dedicated on the first Sunday in August of 1846 with Father James Van de Velde, later Bishop of Chicago, officiating.

St. Joseph Parish soon became a very active community. In 1862, a large parish school was built nearby. The Sisters of Notre Dame staffed the school for the many children of the area. In late 1861, a German immigrant, Ignatius Strecker, was suffering from an injury he incurred while working at a local soap factory. Despite every known treatment, Mr. Strecker grew worse and was finally told by doctors that he had two weeks to live.

Link to the Shrine of St. Joseph (here)

Continue on to read Shrine History 1866 - 1880.

Friday, August 22, 2008

Fordham Univeristy Award Ethics Award To Abortion Advocate Justice

Fordham has compromised its Catholic identity.

This the bio of Justice Steven Breyer on the NARAL website

Biography of Supreme Court Justice Steven G. Breyer

Justice Breyer is one of the three strongest supporters of reproductive freedom on the court today. If Breyer retires and is replaced by an anti-choice justice, or even a so-called "swing" justice, the court will shift dramatically in its support for reproductive choice. Although five other justices are currently on record as supporting the "essential holding" of Roe v. Wade, the nature of that support is tenuous. The U.S. Supreme Court decided the two most significant recent cases concerning the fundamental right to choose by a one-vote margin.

Link to the National Abortion Rights Action League bio (here)

Now Fordham University is awarding him an ethics prize.

Supreme Court Justice Breyer to Receive Fordham-Stein Ethics Prize

Justice Stephen Breyer has been selected to receive the 2008 Fordham-Stein Ethics Prize. This national honor, bestowed by Fordham Law’s Stein Center for Law and Ethics, recognizes one individual each year whose work, according to the prize's charter,
"exemplifies outstanding standards of professional conduct, promotes the advancement of justice, and brings credit to the profession by emphasizing in the public mind the contributions of lawyers to our society and to our democratic system of government."
"Justice Breyer has devoted his life to the public good,” said William Michael Treanor, dean of Fordham Law. “He was a brilliant, influential, and path-breaking scholar. His government service before taking the bench was of the highest quality. As a jurist, his opinions have been marked by thoughtfulness, balance, rigor, and a commitment to justice and liberty. He has been an eloquent and forceful champion of judicial integrity, as we saw this spring when he participated in a forum on judicial independence at Fordham Law together with Justice Sandra Day O'Connor. In every facet of his extraordinary career, he has embodied the great ideals of the Fordham-Stein Prize, and he is a superb honoree."
Appointed to the Court by President Bill Clinton in 1994, Justice Breyer had previously served as an assistant to the United States assistant attorney general for antitrust, an assistant special prosecutor on the Watergate Special Prosecution Force, and a special counsel of the U.S. Senate Committee on the Judiciary.
Following government service, Breyer taught at Harvard Law School and was also a professor at Harvard’s Kennedy School of Government. A leading expert on administrative law, he wrote a number of influential books and articles on issues ranging from deregulation to copyrights. He left teaching to join the bench, initially as a judge on the United States Court of Appeals for the First Circuit. In 2005, in his book Active Liberty, Justice Breyer presented his views on how the judiciary can best encourage citizen participation in the government’s decision making process. "In every phase of his professional life, as a lawyer in government service, as a scholar, as a judge and justice, Stephen Breyer has exemplified the values that the Fordham-Stein Prize honors," said
Bruce Green, co-director of Fordham Law’s Stein Center. "Justice Breyer is clearly an attorney whose career has been unwaveringly committed both to excellence and to upholding the integrity of the profession."
Named after prominent Fordham Law alumnus Louis Stein '26, the award recognizes the positive contributions of the legal profession to American society. Justice Breyer will accept the prize at a dinner in New York on October 29.
"The Stein Center, which sponsors the prize, has become synonymous with the thoughtful discussion of law and ethics in the scholarly community and among members of the bar. We are forever grateful to the members of the Stein family for their commitment to upholding this important tradition,"
Dean Treanor said. Justice Breyer joins a list of recipients that includes six other members of the U.S. Supreme Court, including two Chief Justices, and three lawyers who have served as Secretary of State. Recent recipients have included John Feerick '61, professor and former dean of Fordham Law; Hon. Patricia M. Wald, former chief judge of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit; Hon. Joseph M. McLaughlin; Attorney General Griffin Bell; Robert Fiske; and Chief Judge Judith Kaye.
Link (here)

A Jesuit Run In

Lisa from the blog, Joys, sorrows, & prayers of a Catholic young woman

An excerpt.
The gentleman next to me said “Happy feast day!” (it was the Feast of the Assumption) and then asked me what part of the Bible I was reading. Apparently he was a Jesuit priest from Marquette University in Milwaukee, and was in San Diego to give a talk and celebrate the 60th anniversary of joining the Jesuits with the rest of the priests that joined at the same time.

Read the full post (here)

Anarchist, Communist And Professional Protestor

And I should care…why?

Dorothy Day, founder of the Catholic Worker Movement, was one tough broad. Batman could learn a thing or two.

By James Y. Lee

On Thursday 28, Father James Martin, associate editor of the Jesuit magazine America, and editor of the Maryknoll's Orbis Books Robert Ellsberg (The Duty of Delight: The Diaries of Dorothy Day) will lead a panel discussion of Day’s life at the Museum of the City of New York (1220 Fifth Ave between 103rd and 104th Sts, 212-534-1672, So who the heck is Dorothy Day? Picture Mother Teresa living the bohemian’s life in 1920s Greenwich Village, tearing through two marriages, having an abortion, and scoring an impressive rap sheet with the FBI. In other words, she was the kinda gal we could call our own. “Dorothy Day is the most famous New York City Catholic,” says Father Martin. “She was a radical and an intellectual. In 20 to 30 years, I think she’ll be declared a saint.”

Link (here)

More on Dorothy Day (here)

Thursday, August 21, 2008

Jesuit University Director On Modesty In Dress

Mexican prelates defend editorial calling for women to dress modestly
Thursday 21 August 2008

MEXICO CITY (CNS) - An editorial in an online publication from the Archdiocese of Mexico City urging women to don more conservative attire has generated headlines across the country as Catholic leaders defended their call for modesty as a method of promoting dignity and reducing incidents of sexual harassment and assault.

In an August 14 statement issued by the archdiocese clarifying the editorial, church leaders said women should "make sure that their dress is not a pretext for being intimidated, victimized by violence and sexually assaulted in a city where gender-based violence is a part of everyday life." The statement added: "The church is conscious that the human body is naturally beautiful, it is a work of God and for our eyes, it is the most perfect of works." Local media responded to the editorial and statement with a steady stream of cheeky headlines, suggesting the church was out to ban miniskirts. A small group of young women -- clad in miniskirts -- protested Aug. 16 outside Mexico City's Metropolitan Cathedral. Even high-profile politicians weighed in; they included Ruth Zavaleta, speaker of the lower house of Congress known for her stylish attire. "How is it possible that it's a pretext ... that because we wear miniskirts we're now going to be victims of a crime?" she asked.
Catalina Morfin Lopez, director of the human development center at Jesuit-run ITESO University in suburban Guadalajara, said the church comments were received poorly by some groups because they interpreted them as "blaming the victim."
"Violence against women and children is a serious problem" in Mexico, she said, although she cautioned that it was difficult to compare figures on the subject with other countries.
Link to the full article (here)

Georgetown's Lesbian Adjuct Professor Defends Pro Choice Feminist Theologian At USD

USD revokes invitation to feminist theologian

Bonnie Morris, an adjunct assistant professor of women's studies at Georgetown University, said some Catholic colleges employ faculty supportive of causes at odds with the church, from gay rights to the use of contraceptives. “I'm openly gay, and I'm teaching at a Jesuit institution,” said Morris, who added that Georgetown is developing a Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender Center.

2,000 sign petition opposing decision

August 20, 2008
A University of San Diego decision rescinding a prestigious position to a Catholic feminist theologian has thrust it smack in the middle of a national debate over academic freedom versus adherence to church teachings.

Rosemary Radford Ruether
Faculty and Roman Catholics are divided over USD's decision to withdraw the appointment of Rosemary Radford Ruether to an endowed chair. At issue is Ruether's position on the board of directors for Catholics for Choice, an abortion rights organization. Two national women's religious groups have sponsored a petition with more than 2,000 signatures demanding that she be allowed to assume the post.
USD is standing by its decision. “Her public position and the symbol of this chair are in direct conflict,” said USD spokeswoman Pamela Gray Payton. “This chair is a powerful, visible symbol of Roman Catholic theology, and in Roman Catholic theology abortion is disallowed.”
The flap underscores a long-standing issue for American Catholic colleges: the debate over academic freedom versus fealty to Catholic doctrine. Many notable universities have come under fire for actions that clash with Catholic orthodoxy, including Notre Dame, Georgetown and St. Louis. Ruether, 71, is concerned about the decision's effect on academic freedom.
“It appears to me that some right-wing group has put pressure on the university,” she said. The position, the Monsignor John R. Portman Chair in Roman Catholic Theology, involved coming to campus three days a week, teaching a course, giving a public lecture, and mentoring junior faculty during the fall 2009 semester, said Lance Nelson, chairman of the Department of Theology and Religious Studies.
Nelson began negotiating with Ruether early this year after a list of possible candidates including Ruether was recommended in a department vote and approved by the previous dean of the College of Arts and Sciences. “She's a widely respected scholar in the field,” Nelson said.
“She's done seminal work on Christian feminism, social justice, and the relationship between religion and ecology.” Ruether writes a regular column for National Catholic Reporter, has 13 honorary doctorates and has written more than 40 books. She teaches part time at Claremont Graduate University, about 40 miles east of Los Angeles. After Ruether was offered the USD appointment, the university's Web site characterized her as a “pioneering figure in Christian feminist theology.” The problem is that the appointment should have gone to the provost for final approval, Gray Payton said. That did not happen. USD received various complaints about the appointment, though not from the chair's anonymous donor, Gray Payton said., founded by a Canadian anti-abortion organization, wrote a scathing article after the appointment was made. “This is a woman who is in favor of abortion, in favor of contraception, homosexuality and women priests,” editor John-Henry Westen said in an interview. “I mean how much more anti-Catholic can you get?”
Nelson said the Department of Theology and Religious Studies was unaware of Ruether's role with Catholics for Choice, but he doesn't know if that knowledge would have changed the faculty's recommendation. In mid-July, USD Vice President and Provost Julie Sullivan called Ruether to withdraw the offer. Fifty USD faculty members have signed the petition demanding that USD reverse course. The petition was sponsored by the Women's Ordination Conference, which advocates for female priests, deacons and bishops; and the Women's Alliance for Theology, Ethics and Ritual, a multireligious feminist educational center with Catholic co-founders. The petition asks for USD either to apologize and honor the offer or allow Ruether to deliver a campus lecture on academic freedom. “Rosemary Ruether is like the godmother of the feminist theologian movement,” said Linda Pieczynski, spokeswoman and past president of Call to Action, a nonprofit Catholic organization that advocates on church reform issues and is endorsing the petition. “It's just criminal to disinvite her from the University of San Diego.” Many Catholic colleges have clashed with church leaders on issues such as abortion, stem cell research and sexuality. In January, St. Louis Archbishop Raymond Burke called for disciplinary action when St. Louis University basketball coach Rick Majerus publicly voiced his support for abortion rights. University of Notre Dame took heat for permitting a production of controversial play “The Vagina Monologues” on campus. Many schools have been rebuked for hosting politicians and speakers who support abortion rights. During a visit in April to Catholic University of America in Washington, D.C., Pope Benedict XVI advised Catholic college educators not to allow scholarly pursuits to depart from Catholic doctrine. “Any appeal to the principle of academic freedom in order to justify positions that contradict the faith and the teaching of the church would obstruct or even betray the university's identity and mission,” he said.
Bonnie Morris, an adjunct assistant professor of women's studies at Georgetown University, said some Catholic colleges employ faculty supportive of causes at odds with the church, from gay rights to the use of contraceptives. “I'm openly gay, and I'm teaching at a Jesuit institution,” said Morris, who added that Georgetown is developing a Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender Center.
But Anne Forsyth, spokeswoman at Thomas Aquinas College in Ventura County, said abortion-rights advocates would not be given a platform on campus. “As a Catholic institution for higher education, our understanding of ourselves is that we are to uphold the church's teachings on abortion and other subjects as the Holy Father calls for,” Forsyth said. USD's Monsignor John R. Portman Chair in Roman Catholic Theology was established in 2000 through a $2 million bequest. It was named after Monsignor Portman, who became the founding chair of the department in 1967. According to the university's Web site, “Chair holders are to be distinguished theologians who think from within the Roman Catholic tradition while exploring and expressing the tradition in contemporary contexts.” Sullivan said USD has a responsibility to see that any appointment matches a donor's vision for an endowed position, and in this case it did not. “We're not at all impugning Professor Ruether's scholarship,” she said. “She is a prolific and well-respected scholar.” Although Ruether was denied the Portman Chair, that does not rule out her being invited to USD in another campus appointment or as a guest speaker, Nelson said. Ruether doesn't see a conflict between her two roles. “First of all, what people are doing in their personal life has nothing to do with what you're going to teach,” said Ruether, adding that she had no plans to speak on campus about abortion.

A Jesuit Cardinal And A Catholic Traditionalist

American Theologian Avery Cardinal Dulles has pointed out that the new rite of the Mass violated every norm for liturgical renewal prescribed by Vatican II. He said it was the only Mass in history that was put together by a committee. has published a new article entitled

Confessions of a Traditional Catholic
An excerpt.
"Hello. My name is Steve, and I'm a 'traditional' Catholic."
So begins my admission of membership in a disparate group that, as you've already read, is far too well known for its bitterness, anger, and lack of evangelical spirit. I don't like being typecast in this way. Just because I have a profound love and respect for -- and even a belief in the superiority of -- older liturgical and sacramental forms does not mean that I am an unreasonable malcontent oozing acid from every pore.
I am first and foremost a Catholic, and I detest even needing to wear a label to distinguish myself. Unfortunately, I must, for it is still an uncommon thing among Catholics to venerate many of the traditions that I hold dear.
I'll be honest: There was a time when I was an "angry trad," when I lashed out at others as I clawed for a spiritual inheritance I felt was stolen from me. While this is probably a natural reaction, I now know it gained me nothing. There is no value in promoting the beauty of something when one's conduct in so doing is itself repulsive.
Link to the full article (here)

Wednesday, August 20, 2008

Jesuit Brother: Stargazer

How to teach science to the Pope
The Vatican keeps tabs on science, integrates new research into theology
By Michael Mason

An excerpt.

Brother Guy Consolmagno occupies a small space of heaven. A Jesuit brother and astronomer for the Vatican Observatory, he works at the observatory’s headquarters at the pope’s summer palace in Castel Gandolfo, a 45-minute train ride from Rome.

Castel Gandolfo sits on the high ground of Italy’s Lazio region, perched above the exotic, sapphire-blue volcanic Lake Albano. The view you get is magical. “This is a good place for things like an occultation, like the transit of Venus in 2004,” Consol­magno says. “We observed the comet hitting Jupiter because the first events were visible only from this part of the world.”

Below the observatory’s domed chamber are the offices that make up the rest of the Vatican Observatory. One study has bookshelves filled with hardbound journals all the way to the high ceiling. Consolmagno pulls one off a shelf and reads aloud: “Account of a new telescope by Mr. Isaac Newton.” He shows me, then smiles. “I think he has a future,” he says.

Link to the full article (here)

Photo is of the spots on Jupiter

5 New Scholastics

Jesuit novices commit themselves to God

Sunday, August 17, 2008
By Renée K. Gadoua

Five men professed vows Saturday making public their commitment to live as Jesuits. The vow ceremony came during a Mass at Holy Cross Church, DeWitt. The men, none of whom is from Central New York, have spent two years as novices. They are now known as scholastics in the men's Roman Catholic community known as the Jesuits, or the Society of Jesus. All intend to become priests, a process of study, prayer and ministry that could take up to 10 years. Sometime after ordination, they will profess final vows as Jesuits. The men range in age from 24 to 34 and are members of the New York, New England and Maryland Jesuit provinces of the United States. St. Andrew Hall, the novitiate for the three provinces, is at Le Moyne College. Before joining the Jesuits, the men worked in careers including the military and education.There are about 18,800 Jesuits worldwide; that's about 400 fewer than the previous year. About 2,850 Jesuits serve in the United States.

Link (here)

Newest Jesuits: Rodolfo Casals, Luis Infante, Brett McLaughlin, Matthew Prochilo and Eric Studt pronounced their first vows as Jesuits on Saturday, August 16.

Czech Jesuit History

History of Jesuit Library in Český Krumov

The first Jesuits came to Český Krumlov in March of 1584. Four years later in May 16th, 1588 new Jesuit College was opened in town (Horní No. 154). The library had always been a part of Jesuit educate and preaching activity. Wilhelm von Rosenberg donated to it in the very beginning, and more books, money and maps arrived in 1591.

Liber benefactorum collegii Crumloviensis, inchoatus a R. P. Albrecht in 1670 brings the first mention of the Jesuitical library in 1657. It is associated with the name of a prelate Jiří Bílek z Bílenberku who held his office here during 1642 - 1657. In his testament he bequeathed his library and 100 ducats to the College. Another library patron was friar M. Ondřej Freyberger. According to the statute of the order, he renounced his father's heritage in the amount of 600 ducats, which, as he had declared in November 12, 1692, were split to 400 ducats assigned to the College, while 200 ducats of it were determined to the purchase of valuable books, and 100 ducats were given to buy books for convent cells of professors in the Latin school at the College. So did Jan František Schikmayer, a former priest in Hofkirchen in Austria, who bequeathed his own library to Jesuitical College in April 17, 1698. Marie Ernestine von Eggenberg, neé von Rogendorf, who married the Duke of Krumlov Johann Christian I. von Eggenberg was another firm patron of the library. She was directly involved in obtaining books for the Jesuitical Library. After her death, Eleonora Amalie Terezie von Schwartzenberg, née von Lobkowitz and wife of Maria Ernestine's descendant and nephew, committed herself to donating regularly, starting in 1720, a German section of the Library with an annual amount of 30 ducats.

The library was even well insured against the case of fire. A special provision in a fire control order from 1695 give us details as of how the library caretaker was supposed to rescue the library content in cooperation with appointed seminar students and the poetry magister as to transport books, especially those of the greatest value, and store them into various rooms along the central corridor.

For f more than a half century afterwards, during 1721 - 1777, there is no more mention of the Jesuitical Library within the State Regional Archive branch in Třeboň. It seems that after the Jesuit Order dissolved in 1773, it was all transferred from Český Krumlov to a former Jesuitical farm at nearby Římov.

On April 30th of 1777, a council in Opařany that cared for the former Jesuitical property administration issued an order for the Commercial Office in Římov to transport the Library to Prague and hand it over against a receipt to a University Library administrator P. Charuel. Not even three weeks passed when the council requested of the office in Římov whether or not the transportation of books to Prague would be worth the price. The office in Římov then answered, immediately after the first order in May 19th, that they had put the books into 45 cases and arranged their transportation to Prague for a daily carriage price of 1 ducat. The price of the books had been estimated at 2000 ducats and the catalog was left with Count Morzino. The reception of 44 cases of books, thoroughly put under seal, was confirmed on a separate receipt by the university librarian Karel Charuel. The last known mention of the Jesuit Library stated the books' transportation expenses. Since the load was so heavy, 21 farm carriages would have to be utilized, and as the draught animals would consequently have gotten tired soon, the journey would have taken 9 days, each day per 1 ducat, and altogether it would have cost 189 ducats. Nevertheless, the Commercial Office ultimately did not use the farmers' help as originally planned; it arranged horse-and-cart transports, paid 170 ducats only and therefore saved 19 ducats from the budget.

Link (here)

Hotel Ruze formally the Jesuit Library (here)

Photo is an old print of Český Krumlov

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

Gavin Newsome, On His Jesuit Upbringing

Progressive Values Stories: Gavin Newsom on Inclusivity and Noah’s Ark
An interview by Edwin Rutsch

an excerpt.

Edwin Rutsch's question: What progressive values are personally most important to you?

Gavin Newsome's response:
........."That interesting, you know, I guess this is my Jesuit upbringing. It comes from the Bible where there are many parts, but one body, where when one suffers, we all suffer. I mean it's a fundamental, a very human value. It's a spiritual one, it's also a secular one and I think a progressive one nonetheless."

Link to his full interview on his progressive values (here)
Gavin Newsome and abortion (here)
Gavin Newsome and family life (here)
Gavin Newsome and his John Edwards issue (here)
Gavin Newsome and Santa Clara University (here)

Chakras And Fr. Teilhard de Chardin, S.J.

This one is strait from the Noonesphere,


by Allen L Roland

An excerpt.

Think of it in terms of chakras ~ after the heart chakra opens, you must speak from your heart ~ only then will the third eye open and you will begin to see through the heart . When you speak what you see through the third eye, your crown chakra will open and you enter a state of soul consciousness and assume your place in a loving plan.

As such, Fr. Pierre Teilhard de Chardin's ultimate truth can be summed up with my axiom;

The basic underlying and uniting force of the universe is a psychic energy field of love and soul consciousness ( The Unified Field ) which lies not only beyond time and space but ALSO beneath our deepest fears.

Link (here)

More from GJBJ on Fr. Pierre Tielhard de Chardin, S.J. (here)

Monday, August 18, 2008

The Carpenter Who Became A Jesuit

From the blog entitled, Our Lady's Tears. The authoress, Sanctus Belle writes a moving piece on hope. Read her excerpt from the post, Heroic Virtue IV.
Saint Nicholas Owen was probably the most important person in the preservation of Catholicism in England during the period of the penal laws against the faith.
He was a carpenter or builder, who saved the lives of countless Jesuit priests in England for two decades by constructing hiding places for them in mansions throughout the country. He became a Jesuit lay brother in 1580, was arrested in 1594 with Father John Gerard, and despite prolonged torture would not give the names of any of his Catholic colleagues; he was released on the payment of a ransom by a wealthy Catholic.
Brother Nicholas is believed to have been responsible for Father Gerard's dramatic escape from the Tower of London in 1597. Nicholas was arrested a third time in 1606 with Father Henry Garnet, whom he had served 18 years, Father Edward Oldcorne, and Father Oldcorne's servant, Brother Ralph Ashley. He refused to give any information concerning the Gunpowder Plot. They were imprisoned in the Tower of London. Nicholas was subjected to such vicious torture, which literally tore his body to pieces, killing him. Nicholas was also known as Little John and Little Michael and used the aliases of Andrews and Draper. Born in Oxford, England; died in the Tower of London, 1606; beatified in 1929; canonized by Pope Paul VI in 1970 as one of the Forty Martyrs of England and Wales; feast day formerly March 12.
Link (here)

Sunday, August 17, 2008

Out Of This World Fictional Jesuits

“AN EXPERIENCE NOT TO BE MISSED . . . If you have to send a group of people to a newly discovered planet to contact a totally unknown species, whom would you choose?
How about four Jesuit priests, a young astronomer, a physician, her engineer husband, and a child prostitute-turned-computer-expert?
That’s who Mary Doria Russell sends in her new novel, The Sparrow. This motley combination of agnostics, true believers, and misfits becomes the first to explore the Alpha Centuri world of Rakhat with both enlightening and disastrous results. . . . Vivid and engaging . . . An incredible novel.”
–Milwaukee Journal Sentinel
Link (here)
Here my response to the review.
"No thanks, I'll pass!"

Back When Protestants Feared Jesuits

The Death of Protestant America: A Political Theory of the Protestant Mainline
by Joseph Bottum
Copyright (c) 2008 First Things (August/September 2008).

An excerpt.
From the beginning, Protestants in America felt some interdenominational unity simply because they were all Protestants—named by their protest against Rome. The United States never experienced a state-sponsored Catholic Church, capable of oppressing dissenters. Still, even in this country, the Protestant imagination was formed by works such as John Foxe’s 1563 Book of Martyrs, and it retained a collective image of the Reformation as a time when Protestants of every stripe were martyred for their faith by the Jesuitical priests of the Roman Antichrist.

Link (here)

Rent A Former Jesuit Priest And His Wife

This post is from the Rentapriest blog, exemplifies the correlation between bad theology and disobedience.
Check the post entitled, Ministry of Prophetic Obedience: Don Cordero

An excerpt.
By Juanita Cordero
New Women, New Church
Spring 2008

My call to ministry began when I was about six years old. I vividly remember playing priest in our backyard. Those dreams were tucked away and after high school I entered the Sisters of the Holy Names in Los Gatos, Calif. where I remained for ten years. In 1969 I left and went to Phoenix, Ariz. to teach. What lay ahead of me was a mystery that would slowly unfold.

In 1971 I married Don Cordero, a former Jesuit and was immediately kicked out of teaching in the parish school. Needless to say neither of us had a job as Don too was told to pack his bags and leave his parish in Santa Clara. We managed to return to California and together raised a family of five children.

Saturday, August 16, 2008

Jesuit On Who Should Get The Catholic Vote

From the blog Night of the White Cross
Yes, Who Should Get the Catholic Vote?

An excerpt.
There was a recent article from Fr. Ray Schroth S.J. on Who Should Get the Catholic Vote?
Presumably he feels it should be Sen. Obama.
He lists the breakdown of Catholics and their political party affiliation, according to a recent poll by the Center for Applied Research in the Apostolate (CARA) at Georgetown U. They found 38 percent of Catholics identify with the Democratic Party, and 21 percent with the Republicans, while 41 percent identify with neither. Meanwhile, those who most identify with church authorities, who look to the Pope and Bishops for moral decisions, tend to be Republicans.
Link (here)