Saturday, November 03, 2007

Is this a trend here on Long Island? First St. John the Evangelist parish and now Cure of Ars in Merrick?

"The church was re-opened in early October after an extensive renovation. Some generous parishioners took on the cost of the renovation which included having the tabernacle moved to the center of the church behind the altar."

From The Long Island Catholic
Special Report: Are they inventing their own Mass in Holland?

"In Nijmegen, Holland, in the church of the Augustinian friars, each Sunday the Mass is concelebrated by a Protestant and a Catholic, with one presiding over the liturgy of the Word and the sermon, and the other over the liturgy of the Eucharist, in alternation. The Catholic is almost always a layperson, and is often a woman. For the Eucharistic prayer, the texts of the missal are passed over in favor of texts composed by the former Jesuit Huub Oosterhuis. The bread and wine are shared by all."

This story by Sandro Magister was found on Catholic Online . In the land of the murder of Theo Van Gogh, it appears Christianity is on its way out.

The 15TH ANNUAL MEETING at St. John's University Law School

Post IV

Professor Joseph Varacalli, the founder of the Center for Catholic Studies at Nassau Community College, asked me if I could put together a panel on Catholic blogging and I was intimidated but very honored. I knew there were a some local bloggers around and asked Leticia Velasquez of Causa Nostrae Laetitiae and Dawn Eden of The Dawn Patrol first. I knew there were others in the NY area I could ask but both of these women said yes so there was our panel. We would each speak for 15 minutes and then there would be a question and answer period. Later, Elizabeth Andrew, a local blogger I was not familiar with, was added to the panel so we had a 4 person panel. I was exciting to talk about Catholic blogging since I have been very interested in them since I started reading some of the blogs on Gerard Serafin's "List of Some Catholic Blogs". When Gerard died I created the Catholic Blog Directory to continue this valuable resource of having a list of blogs of interest to Catholics. I wanted in my talk to give a background/history of Catholic blogging and to point out the importance of blogs to Catholics, and hope I did some justice to this. In hindsight, I wish I had gone over some ideas on blogging that I would have liked to stress, but because of time constraints and nervousness I left them out or mentioned them briefly. I also would have liked to gone into some criticisms of blogs but we did not as a panel do this. Overall though, the panel went fine. Next, I will post my basic talk for the panel and fill in some of the stuff I left out in the talk.

Monday, October 29, 2007


The 15TH ANNUAL MEETING at St. John's University Law School

Post III

After the great panel on Pius XII, I skipped the expensive lunch and went across the street to the Fame Diner and had a turkey burger. Then I met up with Leticia and we went to the room where the blog conference was being held to see if we could get our blogs put up on the screen in the "smart classroom" (we figured it out somehow). Before our blog conference in this same room was a panel on The Legacy of Pope John Paul II Continues so I stayed. The discussant was Brian Scarnecchia, Chair of Humanities and Professor of Catholic Social Thought at Franciscan University. He introduced Peter Colosi of the Franciscan U. Gaming, Austria campus, who delivered a paper on "John Paul II and Christian Personalism vs. Peter Singer and Utilitarianism: Philosophical Reflections on the Foundations of Ethics".

Colosi began his talk by mentioning Peter Singer's decision to hire people to take of his elderly mother who was suffering from dementia. This was a shock to me. After all, this is quite a strange thing to do for a guy who has spent years telling people killing disabled, sick, elderly, and newborn people is morally okey-dokey. Colosi said Singer could not bring himself to do what his philosophical beliefs would have him do, because he loved his mother. He contrasted Singer's philosophy with that of Pope John Paul II's and it is quite a contrast. Colosi gave a deep and interesting talk and I can't wait to read the paper, which he gave out to all in attendance.

Following Colosi, was Jose David Lapuz, UNESCO Commissioner and Executive Vice-President, Philippine Council on Foreign Relations. He spoke on "The Inspired Thoughts of Pope John Paul II and UNESCO: Why Human Rights and Reduction of Poverty is Quintessentially a Catholic Concern". Professor Lapuz spoke fondly of his encounters with Pope John Paul II and of the Pontiff's interest in the work of UNESCO in fighting poverty and in championing human rights. Later, at the wine and cheese reception, I found Professor Lapuz to be very charming and humble in describing to me his encounters with the Pope.

After this conference was the conference on Catholic blogs, which I will write about shortly...

Sunday, October 28, 2007

I went to see the movie Bella today with my wife and my mother. The movie was very good, I would encourage all to go see it. I am a bit leery about movies that are touted as pro-life, or Catholic or Christian as they can be cheesy. Bella was not, it was very well done. On the way out of the theater, who did I run into? My fellow blog panelist Leticia. I still have to write about the rest of the Conference at St. John's Law School, including the blog panel. More to come...
Pius XII and The Catholic Church during World War II

THE 15TH ANNUAL MEETING at St. John's University Law School

Post II

I was able to attend Panel # 39 at the conference of The Society of Catholic Social Scientists yesterday. This panel was "The Pius Wars and Sister Margherita Marchione" Sister did not speak, except to mention 1 interesting fact, but at the lunch following the panel she was given an award for her work on Pope Pius XII and World War II.

The panel was moderated by Fr. Edward Krause of Gannon University. First, Kenneth Whitehead, former U.S. Assistant Secretary of Education, gave a review of several books written about Pius XII that refuted the charges of anti-semitism and non-action during WWII. These included:

The Pius War: Responses to the Critics of Pius XII

The Myth of Hitler's Pope: How Pope Pius XII Rescued Jews from the Nazis

Pius XII, the Holocaust, and the Revisionists

Consensus & Controversy: Defending Pope Pius XII

Did Pius XII Help the Jews?

Righteous Gentiles: How Pius XII and the Catholic Church Save Half a Million Jews from the Nazis

Inside the Vatican of Pius XII: The Memoir of an American Diplomat during World War II

Mr. Whitehead gave an overall summary of the job many people, including those on the panel, have done in showing the charges that Pius XII was silent at the plight of the Jews during WWII was incorrect.

Next, Ronald Rychlak, author of Righteous Gentiles: How Pius XII and the Catholic Church Save Half a Million Jews from the Nazis, gave a talk that mentioned some more details in the fight to correct the perception of Pius XII. He spoke of the sudden attacks on Pius XII that started about 8 years ago and asked why all of a sudden was this an issue? His answer: the chattering classes saw the end of Pope John Paul II's reign approaching and wanted to influence the Church in a different direction. For example, Rychlak mentioned that the last chapter of "Hitler's Pope" was all about Pope John Paul II! Also, the last chapter of "Constantine's Sword" was about the need for a Vatican III. Interestingly, Rychlak pointed out the play The Deputy, the first attack on Pius XII's character, was produced at a time when Pope John XIII was expected to die. (In 1963 he died and the play was first staged). When Rychlak was discussing John Cornwall, Sr. Marchione mentioned that Cornwall has now recanted his thesis of "Hitler's Pope"! Another interesting fact, but the panel pointed out how the damage was already done.

Bill Doino, a Catholic columnist spoke next on "Pius XII: An International Perspective". He mentioned the collection of people, mostly those on the panel, who had been doing important work around the world to correct the errors that are now commonly held about Pius XII. This whole panel was held in the St. John's Law School Moot Court Room, and the verdict was overwhelming against those that had defamed the character of the holy Pope Pius XII. Thanks to these scholars, and to the Catholic League, (Bill Donohue was in the room also listening to the panel) the truth about Pius XII and the Catholic Church during WWII is being told.
Around St. Blog's

I have been enjoying reading The Deacon's Bench by Deacon Greg Kandra, from Queens.

I have also enjoyed reading The Cafeteria Is Closed with Gerard Augustinus' reaction to the fast pace of Manhattan, and to his experience with NYC cab rides.

I also enjoyed checking out the pics at Hallowed Ground.