Monday, April 27, 2015

On marriage, truth, and the freedom to speak of these things...

...and with the Election focusing thoughts on what the next Government will be like, and what might happen over the next years....read here...

CATHOLIC HISTORY WALK...

TODAY , Monday April 27th. Starts at this church...Mass 1.05pm. Nearest tube: LONDON BRIDGE

Papa Francis giving good advice...

...and a heart-warming sight as new priests are ordained. See here...

Reading up on the debates over whether the weather is changing...

...I found this of interest...

Sunday, April 26, 2015

While at a care home for elderly people...

...one of the residents kept gently reminding everyone that "Songs of Praise", the popular BBC Sunday programme of hymns, would shortly be on the TV. Part of me thought "Oh, dear...I suppose that's the sort of thing people here like...." But the cheery nurse turned on the TV and we heard some of the most enchanting, beautiful singing from children's school choirs. DO LISTEN, especially to the choir of  Ysgol lau Llangennech - and watch the young faces. And there's lots more: enjoy. Here...

And share this with friends.

A  particularly wonderful moment this afternoon was the staff and residents of the home - yes, and Auntie Joanna too - joining in with "What a friend we have in Jesus" with the choir of St Peter's CofE school,   Go on. Listen, watch, and join in too.

An important read...

...about an important dialogue. Read here...

Saturday, April 25, 2015

London...

...very crowded indeed on a sunny April Saturday.  The London Marathon tomorrow, various Gallipoli commemorations today...the bells of St Paul's Cathedral were ringing a most glorious peal  (??Evensong? It was just before 5pm) and helicopters were chattering overhead at intervals throughout the day.  I was lunching with Ciara, who works at St Patrick's, Soho - good to catch up on news and ideas...she was due to spend the evening in street evangelisation (they give out  holy medals, get chatting to people)...

Yesterday evening, I attended, with a fellow student, a fund-raising event for one of our MA team, Fr Bala, who later this year will be returning to India to work with disadvantaged youth in a scheme run by the Jesuits...a group of his friends and parishioners here in London had organised a splendid fund-raising dinner-dance  and H. and I were glad to support it. We went along in our best dresses and enjoyed being part of it all!  Delicious food, beautiful candlelit tables, lots of talk and music, a very happy atmosphere, a really splendid evening...Fr Bala gave a short presentation about the work he hopes to do in India and you can get a flavour of it here...

Friday, April 24, 2015

Shock sex eduation in a Catholic school....

...yes, I thought that would get you reading.

More info here

There is evident fear about what might happen if pupils become influenced. And the organisation involved is active, apparently, in giving talks to other schools and to youth groups. Info here...


If you do not know...

...why  thousands of Australians and New Zealanders , young and old, will be getting up at dawn tomorrow morning, then you must find out.

This is a day that never goes uncommemorated in the Bogle family (Australian, and grateful and proud of it)  because, as for so many other families, it resonants with family names, family history.

An Australian friend sent me an ANZAC link which includes the words from Ataturk on the Gallipoli memorial: 
Those heroes that shed their blood and lost their lives ... You are now lying in the soil of a friendly country. Therefore rest in peace. There is no difference between the Johnnies and the Mehmets to us where they lie side by side here in this country of ours ... You, the mothers who sent their sons from faraway countries, wipe away your tears; your sons are now lying in our bosom and are in peace. After having lost their lives on this land they have become our sons as well.

St George's Day...

...and  Mass and celebration supper at this London cathedral,

I was due to give a lecture in the cathedral hall, as part of a whole series of talks on the Catholic faith, organised by the Catholic Formation Centre, and  it drew good numbers, extra chairs brought in etc. Topic was a suitable one for the feast of St George, who is patron of chivalry...we were tackling male/female relationships, marriage, family...

St John Paul the Great gave us a rich new way of teaching all this, with the Theology of the Body, and there are now some good resources on this to enable useful discussions, especially with the young.


Tuesday, April 21, 2015

University Chaplain...

...Fr Mark Vickers of Hatfield, spoke at LOGS.  As  Catholic Chaplain to students at  the University of Hertfordshire, he welcomes students from all over the world, many of whom are baffled by the (often ugly, sordid, and drunken!) lifestyle of modern Britain. African and Asian Christians find a home-from-home in the Church. It was fascinating to get a picture of what the Church can offer to students at a modern university and to realise the creative part played by things like the FAITH Movement, World Youth Day, and the whole vision of the New Evangelisation...and the day-to-day life of a welcoming Catholic community.

A useful, upbeat and informative evening - and we also had a lot of planning and discussion because the LOGS activities are endlessly increasing as the Ordinariate activities expand and our own evangelistic outreach grows...projects for primary schools, meetings, pilgrimages, and we've got to look ahead and book our slot for carol singing in December (yes, I know that sounds daft but the big London railway stations get booked by dozens of groups each year!) and we're thinking of  our programme for 2016 too...

Monday, April 20, 2015

...and meanwhile in San Francisco...

...a major on-line secular newspaper ran a questionaire on the topic of the Archbishop's upholding of Catholic moral teachings in Catholic schools.

The thing began because the San Francisco Chronicle ran an advertisment paid for by rich Catholics demanding that the Archbishop be sacked: they are angry because he is upholding the teaching that Catholic teachers in  Catholic schools should abide by Catholic moral teaching on sex and marriage. The rich-team think that as "prominent Catholics" they must tell him to stop doing that.

Here's the latest, reported by the CWR Blog,  and you can read more here...

The San Francisco Chronicle, the newspaper that published the appeal, is the largest circulation daily in northern California, owned by the Hearst group. Its online twin is SFGate, with 22 million visitors monthly.
To reinforce the impact of the appeal’s publication, SFGate also launched a questionnaire with four pre-determined answers—two pro and two con—to this question: Should Pope Francis remove Archbishop Cordileone from the San Francisco archdiocese?
And what came of it? The overwhelming majority lined up not to fire the archbishop, but to defend him.
For the sake of accuracy, at noon on Sunday, April 19th, here are the results of the questionnaire:
77% answered: “No, the archbishop is upholding the values of the Catholic Church.”
11%: “Yes, the archbishop is fostering a climate of intolerance.”
10%: “No, the archbishop is right to oppose same-sex marriage.”
2%: “Yes, his morality clauses for teachers in parochial schools defies the law.”
Evidently, the signatories of the appeal are “prominent Catholics”, but they have neither the pulse nor the following of bulk of the faithful, not even in the U.S. city depicted by the media as the most “liberal”.

Privacy...

...a couple of correspondents have written in demanding that I give out more information about my family - and especially about my closest elderly relatives.  I deliberately protect their privacy by not revealing any information: not their names, not the specific relationship, not their address, not any information that will reveal the address. So please stop seeking it. We have discussed this in the family and agreed to protect our privacy.

Like many other writers, I will often want to refer to personal anecdotes and will continue doing so, and will tend to refer simply to "a relation" or "a young friend" etc. Get used to it.

Sunday, April 19, 2015

St John Paul - Doctor of the Church?

...The idea has been raised and certainly has merit. Read some thoughts here...

One suggestion is that he should be honoured as the "Doctor of Mercy"  but that title really belongs  also to St Faustina...

St John Paul's teachings on marriage, family, the male/female sacranmental bond, the "nuptial meaning" of the Eucharist, and the "theology of the body", along with his work on freedom, inter-religious dialogue, and the centrality of truth, are all of huge importance. His Trinitarian emphasis, at the core of all his teachings, is of significance.


...and when at St Patrick's. Soho the other day...

...I picked up info about SPIRIT IN THE CITY, which happens in June. Events include drama, a street party, and a great Blessed Sacrament Procession through Soho. More about it all here...