2011 featured numerous high-profile appointments by Pope Benedict. But none, arguably, were as buzzed-about as the new head of the Archdiocese of Philadelphia, a historic see that has been rocked by the abuse crisis. The Pope chose Archbishop Charles Chaput, who, as the former Archbishop of Denver, had already gained international exposure for his eloquent writing on faith and politics. Witness host Fr. Thomas Rosica, CSB speaks with the Capuchin prelate in the days following his appointment to Philadelphia.
Daily Archives: November 5, 2011
AFP via Yahoo:
The Vatican’s top cultural official on Friday hit out at sermons he said were too often dreary and bland and urged Catholic priests not to shy away from spicing up their preaching.
Speaking at a conference organised by a French institute, Cardinal Gianfranco Ravasi said preaching in churches “was so dull and vapid that it had become quite meaningless.”
To yank drowsy church-goers to attention, the Italian cardinal urged priests to jazz up their vocabulary and not be afraid of letting the “scandal” contained in the Bible erupt from the pulpit.
Ravasi argued that priests needed to be in sync with their time and adapt to a high-paced, tech-savvy world.
“The advent of televised and computerised information requires us to be compelling and trenchant, to cut to the heart of the matter, resort to narratives and colour,” he said.
He praised micro-blogging site Twitter as a tool that “forces to deliver something in a flash, something primal.”
Here is the keynote address given by Bishop Michael Gill (TAC Southern Africa) at the the Conference of Continuing Anglicans in Boston USA yesterday:
Read it in pdf. by following this link.
UPDATE: In Virtue Online, Dr David Virtue offers the above speech with his own comments (here) such as:
The Rt. Rev. Michael Gill, Bishop of Pretoria and Southern Africa, told his listeners that trouble makers who come in to destabilize parishes, those who proselytize from other churches, and the Pope’s offer of Anglicanorum Coetibus were little more than “cunning plans” that “never won a single soul for the Lord Jesus Christ nor did it add one soul to the Kingdom of God.”…
The bishop shredded the Pope’s offer…
Gill said the offer was little more than an attempt by Rome for Anglican Christians to “swap allegiance” and join the Roman Catholic Church – to “convert” as individuals or groups and become Roman Catholics…
Gill said that this was not what those with stars in their eyes and their hands already grasping for St Peter’s keys had been told…
The Archbishop of Canterbury, Dr Rowan Williams, raises concerns about David Cameron’s plans to allow the monarch to marry a Roman Catholic.
The Telegraph reports:
The Archbishop of Canterbury, Dr Rowan Williams, has found common cause with the Left-wing agitators camping outside St Paul’s, but he is less enamoured of a radical move by David Cameron.
The Prime Minister announced at the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting that the Government planned to scrap “outdated” laws which ban the spouse of a Roman Catholic from taking the throne.
Now, however, Dr Williams has raised concerns that allowing a future monarch to marry a Catholic could bring into question his or her role as the supreme governor of the Church of England.
“The constitutional question, of course the tough one, is the upbringing of any heir to the throne in an Anglican environment, given that the heir to the throne will be the supreme governor, under law, of the Church of England,” says the Archbishop in an interview with Vatican Radio.
“I think if we’re quite clear that, so long as the monarch is supreme governor of Church of England, there needs to be a clear understanding that the heir is brought up in that environment, all well and good.”
The historic change was agreed unanimously in Australia last week by the 16 nations of which the Queen is monarch.
Cameron said it did not “make any sense that a potential Monarch can marry someone of any faith other than Catholic”. He added: “The thinking behind these rules is wrong. That’s why people have been talking about changing them for some time. We need to get on and do it.
Could religion be playing a part in the relative success of Europe’s economies? One academic thinks so.
In Guardian (UK):
If maps were shaded like balance sheets, the bottom part of mainland Europe would be deepest red. Italy, Spain and Portugal are heavily in debt. They are also Catholic countries. Their predominantly Protestant neighbours to the north, including Germany and Scandinavia, are in comparatively good shape financially. Is that simply a coincidence, or is Max Weber’s theory about the Protestant ethic being intertwined with the spirit of capitalism still valid, over 100 years on?
There is more on Dr Sascha Becker belief that religion is a factor in economic differences here.
Set Your Clocks Back, Or Just Switch to Mecca Time…
This summer, the world’s largest clock began its first official duty: marking time during Ramadan in Mecca—Islam’s holiest city. This colossal clock bears a striking resemblance to Big Ben, and the tower that hosts it (courtesy of the Canadian-based Fairmont hotel operation) is six times taller than the British landmark, making it the second tallest building in the world, visible for 16 miles.
All well and good. One can marvel at human ingenuity and move on. However, what makes this case interesting is the fact that after the inauguration of the clock, there were calls from many Muslims to replace Greenwich Mean Time (GMT)—the world standard for 125 years—with Mecca Time. Some have argued that GMT is the remnant of a colonial heritage, and it is time to turn over a new page.
Surely, there is nothing special about where the Greenwich Observatory is located. The reason that the meridian is 0 at Greenwich is because the British figured out how to calculate longitude at sea first, so they got to make a part of England the main reference point. Names associated with science are often, if not always, symptomatic of political power of the time. This is why many of the elements discovered in the 20th century—like berkelium, americium, and californium—have American names (though sometimes there were competing claims from Soviet laboratories also). Similarly, because Arab astronomy was dominant in the late medieval period, and Arabic atlases played a key role in the development of modern astronomy, more than half of the brightest stars in the sky have Arabic names. But for some Muslims today, that’s not enough.
Even if we concede the colonial legacy of GMT, what would justify Mecca to be the replacement reference point for the entire world?
Things start to get messy pretty fast…
Read on here.