Thursday, April 04, 2013

10 Years Blogging!

I really have not blogged much lately except for pointing out some worthwhile events of interest to Catholics.  However, January 18, 2013 was my 10 year blogiversary.  I am going to try to blog more often and have done some housecleaning by eliminating defunct blogs and sites on the right.  I have also added a donation button for the first time (gotta start the kid's college fund sometime!). 

Catholic man removed from volunteer post at Oceanside parish

From PIX11:

Catholic church removes gay married man from his activities

"Nicholas Coppola’s faith means everything to him. His Long Island home  is full of religious books, pictures of cardinal timothy Dolan even the word, faith.
“Father Nick said I have to remove you from any public ministry, he said I have no choice,” said Coppola.
Coppola was teaching religious instruction, he was a Eucharistic minister and also a lector then in January, he got word from his church in oceanside he couldn’t do any of it anymore. He never thought marrying the love of his life a man would cost him that.
“What was pointed out, you made a very public statement getting married, I think the question was asked why, I said I got married like any other loving couple,” said Coppola.
The pastor of Saint Anthony’s Church in Oceanside told us “He’s always welcome to come to the church and receive the sacraments as far as I’m concerned.”
Pastor Nicholas Lombardi says the decision came from the Diocese of Rockville Center.
The Diocese received an anonymous letter complaining of Coppola’s marital status and sent a letter the parish. He showed us copies.
The Diocese of Rockville Center told us in a statement:
“Gay married people cannot be on staff in the position that he held, however the church is welcoming of all persuasions.”
Coppola just wants to get back to doing what he loved so much."

St. Anthony is a parish that is staffed by Jesuits. 

The Mystery of Matter and the Hunt for the God Particle

 This is an event of the Crossroads Cultural Center which was founded by members of Communion and Liberation.  They host many worthwhile presentations.


 A look at the fascinating discovery of the "God Particle" with Dr. Lucio ROSSI, physicist an High Luminosity LHC Project Leader at CERN and an introduction by Dr. Allan J. JACOBSON, Robert A. Welch Chair of Science and Director of the Texas Center for Superconductivity at the University of Houston

Presented by Crossroads Cultural Center

The recent announcement of the discovery of a Higgs-like particle at the Large Hadron Collider, the world’s largest and most powerful particle accelerator, has generated enormous shockwaves in the press. Some people call it The God Particle.
Why such an awesome name? Can it really be the key for unlocking some of the mysteries of the universe? Can it help us understand the origin of mass, for instance? Can it tell us anything about ourselves and our place in the universe?
In this talk, Prof. Lucio Rossi, a leading scientist from the European Organization for Nuclear Research (CERN), will address the fundamental questions scientists are facing in the pursuit of the most fascinating scientific discovery of the century.

About this Event

Date: Tuesday, April 16, 2013
Time: 6:30 pm
Location: University of Houston - Athletics/Alumni Facility - Carl Lewis Auditorium
3100 Cullen Blvd. Houston, TX 77204
UH Entrance 15 off Cullen Blvd.
Open parking in Lots 16F, 16B and 16C.

About the Speakers

Lucio Rossi, PhD
High Luminosity LHC Project Leader, CERN, Geneva, Switzerland
  Allan J. Jacobson, PhD
Robert A. Welch Chair of Science and Director of Texas Center for Superconductivity, University of Houston, Houston, TX

Sports and the Culture

This opinion piece by former NBA player John Amaechi on the firing of Rutgers coach Mike Rice is a good take on the culture of coaching:

Rutgers coach and sports bully culture

"(CNN) -- Too often, it's tempting to view sports through rose-tinted glasses. We believe that coaches always have the best interests of our young people at heart and that everything they do on the side of that court, field, pool or track is for the long-term, holistic benefit of young people.

We even rationalize that coach-player interaction and athlete management behavior that makes us wince and avert our gaze somehow makes our children -- and even society -- stronger and our future elite athlete role models more humble and worthy.

Sadly, "it's character-building" is the rallying cry for dysfunction and another damaged generation. Even when we believe that a young person's sports experience is on the wrong track, we convince ourselves it can't have that much of an impact. I wish that were true, but medieval coaches, like the recently fired Mike Rice at Rutgers University, are a detriment to society, not just sport.

As a former basketball player at college and in the NBA, I know this coaching style firsthand."

Coaches can be a huge influence on athletes and what is considered acceptable behavior is way below what is expected of teachers.  Athletes and sports have a huge influence on the culture at large and vice versa. Catholics should have a good influence on both sports and culture especially since there are so many Catholic colleges, universities, high schools and elementary schools.

At The Deacons Bench there is an article linked that shows that people often choose sports for their children above going to Church on Sunday.  Chaminade High School has a good practice - an entire sports team attends Mass together on Sunday at each teammate's parish.

Wednesday, April 03, 2013

Reform of the Reform in the Diocese of Rockville Centre

 (This is an old post that I apparently saved as a draft and never posted)

I was checking Mass times for Our Lady of Perpetual Help in Lindenhurst when this note on the front page of their website struck me:

"Thanks be to God, the Blessed Sacrament is now back in the sanctuary "front and center". The focus is now where it ought to be... on Christ in the Eucharist and in our lives. - Father Anthony"

Right below are some pictures of their new altar and rearranged sanctuary.

As Fr. Z. says, Brick by Brick......

There was an idea pushed in the 1970's and 1980's within the Church: The tabernacle should be moved to a place set apart from the sanctuary. This, combined with a Church design that would allow people to sit closer to the altar and even face one another, would make Catholics focus on the Liturgical action taking place. It would emphasize the presence of Christ in fellow parishioners. It would end the assumed widespread problem of Catholics focusing on the Real Presence in the Eucharist during Mass. This idea, like the pet rock and bell bottom pants, was not so good and in many places is now falling out of favor. The results of these moves may not have been what was intended: people now feel free to talk loudly in Church - before, during and after Mass, the worst offenders are the elderly and the ushers. (Ironically another idea in the 70's and 80's was to expand or create large spaces in front of the main section of the Church to create a 'gathering space'. This was to encourage community and was a good idea and is where the meet and greets should be taking place.) There is very little to no prayer before or after Mass. Catholics have less of a belief in the Real Presence today and very little belief in the value of piety. Many people are returning the tabernacle to the traditional location and are pleased with the results.

Faith On Tap

I have not been to a Faith on Tap in quite awhile (which makes sense since I am no longer of the age group for this event), but hopefully I will stop by sometime because they were always interesting and fun.

"Being A Young Catholic in the 21st Century"

All Young Adults
You are invited to join us on
Monday, April 22 for our Next Faith on Tap

cameronJoin us on Monday, April 22, as Paul Morisi discusses the challenges that face young adults in the church.  Why do young adults leave the Catholic Church ... and why do others stay? What does the Church offer young adults in the 21st Century?  Come out and join us as we discuss these issues!

Faith on Tap will be held at the Wantagh Inn
3264 Railroad Avenue 
Across from the RR Station
Doors will open at7:00
Come out early ~ have dinner ~ meet new friends ~
re-connect with old friends
Talk begins at 7:30

Tuesday, April 02, 2013

Christian-Jewish Relations In the Middle Ages According to Primary Sources

At Seton Hall University in New Jersey:

The Department of Catholic Studies is pleased to present a lecture in its Medieval Catholicism Lecture Series, entitled "Christian-Jewish Relations in the Middle Ages according to Primary Sources: Nicolas Donin and the Paris Talmud Trial of 1240." The lecture will be presented by Piero Cappelli, Ph.D., Professor of Hebrew Language and Literature at Ca' Foscari University in Venice, Italy, and Visiting Professor of History at Johns Hopkins University.

The lecture will be held on Thursday, April 11 at 4 p.m. in The Walsh Library’s Beck Rooms A and B. This event is free of charge and open to the public. Light refreshments to follow.

About the Lecture

The thirteenth century marked a turning point in the relationship between Christians and Jews. In a single decade, from 1230-1240, the status of the Jews and Judaism in the Holy Roman Empire and in the other Christian kingdoms of Europe was transformed and defined for several centuries to come. These events can be viewed and understood through the prism of one man: Nicolas Donin, the convert from Judaism who acted as the prosecutor in the first public trial against the Talmud in Paris in 1240. This lecture will explain how and why Nicolas Donin stood at the crossroads of religious and political developments in his lifetime, according to primary sources. The lecture will expand the analysis from the intellectual discourse to its application in the 13th century politics.

About the Lecturer

Piero Capelli is an Associate Professor of Hebrew Language and Literature at Ca' Foscari University, Venice, Italy, and a Visiting Associate Professor of History at Johns Hopkins University. He is currently the Primo Levi Fellow at the Katz Center for Advanced Judaic Studies at the University of Pennsylvania. Professor Capelli's research interests are focused in the history of texts and ideas in late antiquity and medieval Judaism, especially in the Greek pseudepigrapha, in Hebrew and Aramaic rabbinic literature, and in medieval Jewish-Christian intellectual polemics. His most recent book is a history of the conceptual field of evil in Judaism from the Bible to early Qabbalah (Il male, Florence 2013). He is currently working on the first critical edition of the Hebrew account of the public trial held against the Talmud in Paris in 1240, which results he will share with us in this lecture.

Happy Easter!

It has been 22 months since I became a father and there has been little time for blogging.  I am going to try to do it more often now, as long as my son will allow me.  Happy Easter!

Seinfeld, Baldwins and the Orthodox

I grew up in Massapequa just like Jerry Seinfeld and those Baldwin guys.  I think within this classic American suburb you can see the 'signs of the times' regarding Christianity -

The Christian Science Reading Room that had been on Merrick Rd. for decades is now St. Peter's & St. Paul's Malankara Jacobite Syrian Orthodox Church.

What was once an Episcopal Church is now St. Gregory of Nyssa Orthodox Church.  (OK, technically this is Seaford but it still shows the Orthodox and Liturgically rich Churches are expanding)

Domus Porta Fidei

An interesting new community is being formed at the seminary of the Immaculate Conception in Huntington that is open to young lay people. 

Check it out at