Archive for the ‘Catholic’ Category

Spaesato: The Lost

E ‘generalmente riconosciuto che il più grande di tutti i commentatori della Bibbia è stato il 11 ° secolo, studioso francese rabbino Schlomo essere Itzhak che è meglio conosciuto come Rashi. La sua preoccupazione per ogni singola parola del testo che stava studiando è stato abbinato solo da un angusto concisione del suo stile. … Entrambi gli studiosi riconoscono le difficoltà di tradurre la prima riga del testo della Bereishit – Bereishit bara Elohim et-hashamayim v’et Ha’aretz. Contrariamente alla credenza di milioni di persone che hanno letto la Bibbia di Re Giacomo, la linea non significa che In principio Dio creò il cielo e la terra. Che l’ebraico dice letteralmente è, All’inizio, Dio creò il cielo e la terra … Dopo un’ampia discussione della questione linguistica, Rashi alla fine risolve il problema adottando certi paralleli di altri testi nei quali è seguito da un verbo Bereishit piuttosto che un sostantivo, ed è questa che ci permette di tradurre le prime parole cruciali come segue:
n l’inizio della creazione di Dio, il cielo e il cielo – quando il cielo era informe e senza forma, e le tenebre erano sulla faccia dell’abisso, e lo spirito di Dio aleggiava sulla superficie delle acque – Dio disse: ” Sia la luce. “-da Daniel Mendelsen è The Lost

C’era un po ‘di entusiasmo all’interno quando qualcosa ti afferra. E ‘successo quando si sono imbattuto in una grande epopea, o quando sono stati coinvolti nella creazione di qualcosa o qualcuno. Come in un matrimonio, o in una figlia.

Lingua e denaro sono cose che ci legano. Nella vita di ogni giorno. Come fanno le storie, parlando di attaccamento e / o appartenenza. Oppure il loro opposto, abbandono.

Memore della sottigliezza del linguaggio umano e la sua potenza, la sottigliezza del linguaggio è un punto di riferimento per ciò che divide me e la mia comunità da parte di estranei. La significatività è stato quando la gente riuniti a dire insieme parole con un linguaggio vivente che si definiscono tra loro. Le parole per le persone in qualche modo collegate, che avevano riconosciuto significato. Qui! Allora perché le lingue, come valute – come il latino, o gli irlandesi punt – die? Se mai a Killarney, fermarsi nel pub chiamato O’Connors e vedere se PJ è intorno (che possiede il posto.) E chiedere a lui la domanda.

La questione chiave per Rashi, è che la lettura sbagliata suggerisce una cronologia corretta della creazione: che Dio creò il cielo e poi la terra, poi la luce, e così via. Ma questo non è come sia successo, Rashi dice. Se si ottiene i piccoli dettagli sbagliato, il quadro sarà sbagliato troppo. -da Daniel Mendelsen è The Lost

Quando tutti insieme l’obiettivo di un buon traduttore in una lingua morta – un po ‘come in un cambio valuta in una terra così straniera – dovrebbe essere quello di promuovere servizi di qualità tra i suoi cittadini che raggiungono per un qualche tipo di unione.

Gli amici dicono che accetteranno l’altro lotta per accettare ciò che stanno imparando a conoscere se stessi nella loro epica proprio grande, quando coinvolto nella creazione di qualcosa o qualcuno. Forse un po ‘come nel periodo di tempo nella fase iniziale in un rapporto – come quando lo spirito di Dio aleggiava sulla superficie delle acque – c’era questo spirito si libra all’interno che in qualche modo doveva uscire.

E al centro di tutto quel dramma – per Rashi va a non poca difficoltà a spiegare che per davvero stare al centro – il simbolo misterioso e in qualche modo muoversi nel giardino, un albero che rappresenta, sono venuto a pensare, sia la il piacere e il dolore che viene dal conoscere le cose. -da Daniel Mendelsen è The Lost

C’era una saggezza in mostra che viene dal sentir parlare di sofferenza altrui. Per raggiungere il livello di accettazione, dopo aver attraversato tutte le emozioni di rifiuto, paura, rabbia. Dopo aver raggiunto il livello di accettazione, “noi vogliamo dare ciò che abbiamo accettato, anche se ci sarà sempre di più per conoscere il mistero di noi stessi”, scrive Larry Gillick. “Dio vide che gli esseri umani avrebbero ricerca per il completamento, la soddisfazione e ho visto questa ricerca come ‘molto buono’.”

In tutta la storia umana, nessuno ha mai raccontato una storia senza avere un qualche tipo di ordine del giorno. E se si ottiene i piccoli dettagli sbagliato, si ottiene il quadro sbagliato, come nello stress nell’affrontare dell’inizio e della fine. La prima volta che i vostri soldi, poi la tua terra e la tua vita è stato portato via – per sostenere un regno, nei folletti nell’armadio – oltre l’unità dei tedeschi nel 1930, quando c’era disordine valuta così tanto.

L’Olocausto. Per rendersi conto che si potrebbe essere nato in un incubo. Il tema del primo capitolo della Genesi è quello di separare, quindi le cose possono essere buoni, in termini di fertilità. La confusione tra le specie a sé: di uomini e donne, di musulmani ed ebrei. E così la risposta umana nel modo di uccidere ciò che non hai capito.

Come ho detto, la prima cosa che accade in Bereishit non è, come molti pensano che Dio creò il cielo e la terra, ma nel principio della sua creazione dei cieli e della terra, quando tutto era stato un vuoto stupefacente , disse: “sia la luce.” Questo è, infatti, il primo atto della creazione che ci parla Bereishit. Ma ciò che è interessante per me è che ogni atto che segue – luce e buio, giorno e notte, la terraferma e gli oceani, le piante e gli animali, e, infine, l’uomo dalla polvere – è descritto come un atto di separazione. Cosa fece Dio quando vide che la luce era “buono”? Lo separata dalle tenebre, e poi proceduto a continuare a separare …. La storia inizia con la creazione, che, come abbiamo visto, è la storia degli atti di distinguere una cosa dall’altra. Si conclude, alludendo alla distinzione più importante di tutte, la distinzione tra bene e male, una distinzione che diventa apprehensible agli esseri umani solo mangiando il frutto dell’albero della conoscenza, un albero su cui la Torà ci dice che era (come luce) “buono”, che è stato un piacere agli occhi di Eva, e che era auspicabile per la comprensione “, ed è stato a causa di questa bontà, queste meraviglie, questa opportunità che Eva mangiò di esso. -da Daniel Mendelsen è The Lost

C’era qualcosa di eccitante dentro quando qualcosa ti afferra. E ‘successo quando si sono imbattuto in una grande epopea. “Nel modellare ‘donna’, scrive Larry Gillick,” Dio ha dato all’uomo una vicinanza a se stesso, ma semplicemente non abbastanza, e questa forma di separazione o di carattere distintivo avrebbe formato il quadro per il vero significato dell’amore umano, la rivelazione dell’amore di Dio , ma non una sostituzione o di scambio per l’amore. ”

Scrive Larry Gillick, “mi fermo per inserire una citazione lo scopo di stimolare, confondere, e accettare. ‘Non c’è una donna al mondo, il possesso dei quali, è preziosa come quella delle verità che si rivela a noi per mezzo facendoci soffrire.’ ”

Tensione narrativa è soprattutto circa le informazioni alla fonte. Con una paura nella storia. Con tutta la paura nella storia di soldi e donne e la sofferenza, se si ottiene i piccoli dettagli sbagliato, si otterrà l’immagine grande sbagliata che colpisce prima il denaro, poi la vostra terra e la vostra vita. Quando tutti insieme l’obiettivo di un buon traduttore in una lingua morta – un po ‘come in un cambio valuta in una terra così straniera, o forse un po’ come nei rapporti familiari in corso dopo il divorzio – dovrebbe essere quello di promuovere servizi di qualità della sua gente raggiungimento di un qualche tipo di unione.

C’era una paura sconvolgente associato con il potere, e cercando di cogliere la grandezza. Quando hai dimostrato la tua grandezza in un rapporto. E poi nel mondo. Quando il potere nasce dalla relazione.

Esplorare rapporto – come la moneta in circolazione – come ulteriore dislocazione, concettualmente, potrebbe portare a disordini sociali e conflitti geopolitici. Come quello che è successo ieri ad Atene, con la paura della storia, se si abitava nelle vicinanze.

Mettendo insieme i frammenti rotti. Se si ottiene i piccoli dettagli sbagliato, con il Sistema monetario Fiat, il quadro sarà sbagliato troppo. Le banche centrali di tutto il mondo potrebbero gonfiare insieme, creare un massiccio sistema feudale di schiavitù su scala globale e di mantenere entrambi i controlli politici e sociali sulle varie popolazioni del mondo senza molto trattenere o limitazioni. Il problema è che i banchieri centrali ei governi sembrano credere nel sistema che hanno creato a questo scopo. . . herding la popolazione in gruppi controllabili, ordinate per convenienza, la tassazione e la regolamentazione per mantenere le loro controllo politico … in movimento in Europa per una unità della carta internazionale che fluttuano attraverso un sistema indipendente fiat monetario in tutto il mondo. Le guerre mondiali sono storicamente allevati dal disagio economico, dalla valuta che il governo ha dichiarato di avere corso legale, nonostante il fatto che non ha alcun valore intrinseco e non garantite da riserve.

In tutta la storia umana, nessuno ha mai raccontato una storia senza avere un qualche tipo di ordine del giorno. I nostri cervelli sono cablati per la narrativa. Mettendo insieme i frammenti. Con tutta la paura nella storia di soldi e le donne, se si ottiene i piccoli dettagli sbagliato, si otterrà l’immagine grande sbagliata che colpisce prima il denaro, poi la vostra terra e la vostra vita. E io ero un codardo di prendere una possibilità. Perché c’era una volatilità folle in azioni, credito, materie prime e valute – e le donne.

Per perdere la realtà del presente, come il voto donna aveva determinato l’esito di un’altra elezione. La rabbia delle donne a uomini, o in tutti gli altri che hanno collaborato. Forse un po ‘come quello che è venuto fuori dei rapporti dopo il divorzio.

“Quando si è innamorati, si comincia sempre per uno inganna se stessi e si finisce sempre per ingannare gli altri. Questo è ciò che il mondo chiama una storia d’amore. “-Oscar Wilde

Manca il cigno nero. C’era qualcosa di eccitante in quando sono stati coinvolti nella creazione di qualcosa o qualcuno. Si vergogna discutere il cigno nero in pubblico, perché cigni neri semplicemente non è accaduto nel mondo reale. C’era anche una paura sconvolgente associato al potere del denaro e / o amore.

E al centro di tutto quel dramma – per Rashi va a non poca difficoltà a spiegare che per davvero stare al centro – il simbolo misterioso e in qualche modo muoversi nel giardino, un albero che rappresenta, sono venuto a pensare, sia la il piacere e il dolore che viene dal conoscere le cose. -da Daniel Mendelsen è The Lost

Ascolta tutta la sapienza che viene nel vedere la sofferenza altrui, strato dopo strato. Scopriamo e staccarsi superstizione, fantasie, idee di grandezza, i livelli di confusione, di rabbia, di odio, al fine di sperimentare le persone e il mondo che ci circonda – e la mia vita nel mondo – nel modo più diretto e chiaro possibile. Ma quando sempre più persone singole, anche se credevano nella risurrezione, volevo solo evitare la sofferenza.

“E ogni atto che segue – luce e buio, giorno e notte, la terraferma e gli oceani, le piante e gli animali, e, infine, l’uomo dalla polvere – è descritto come un atto di separazione.” Da Daniel Mendelsen è The Lost

 

How the Change in the Mass in English Came to Be

AFTER a time, some of us learn that life comes down to some simple things – how we love, how alert we are, how curious we are. In ways mysterious and comforting comes the profundity of style, of stories, in language, by others more articulate than I. Layer by layer, we discover and peel away superstition, fantasies, ideas of grandeur, levels of confusion, of anger, of hate, in order to experience the people and the world around us – and our life in the world – as directly and clearly as possible.” –Scott Walker of Graywolf Press

To have learned firsthand, through, with, in …. prayer, in the minor Elevation. 

When they come to take you away. The fear, the unsettling fear associated with power, like getting a letter from the IRS. The fear, like on Holy Thursday. There was a certain vintage of fear which came alive, not at all unlike if you had lived in Eastern Europe forty years ago. Over issues of trust. Of people with legal power. When you felt so powerless, as “they” took away my prayers.

In third grade geography, the teacher had discussed the things which made up a regional character. The mountain people seemed different, from the people of the plains. At least in the times when there was a lot less movement, and those people mostly looked alike. With a LANGUAGE which defined them, until the movement in the story changed the people. Language is the reference point for the nuanced subtleties of all relationships. Language is just a measure of what people think about worth. When valuation is so much only what was in a person’s mind, we all are just extrapolating and thinking – and that is perhaps what everyone thinks language is worth. A developed self-worth, when you were touched by the language.

Mindful of this subtlety, day in and day out, of language — the reference point for all delicate human relationships – the significance is when people gathered to say together words which to people somehow connected have recognized meaning. Here!  With a living language which defines us to each other, if not to God.

There is something exciting within when something grips you. It happened when you came across a great epic in which you could identify.  Poetry is a medium connecting the unconnected, measuring a past to the ever-growing present.  And the language of the Mass is what connected us: not only to God but to each other – those graduates of the parochial school.  Prayer is best described as “when you really looked deeply at something, it becomes part of you.”

How alert we are about Divine worship – over power and might? Under John Paul II, Joseph Ratzinger had been the Prefect of the the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith. Get your programs and scorecards ready, concerning issues of power and might. Concerning by whom he had been surrounded. Had there been plots about worldly power, concerning Divine worship among a group of the well-connected? This was like watching the same plot found in The Caine Mutiny?

George Pell was a a member of the Congregation for Divine Worship and president of the Vox Clara Committee, which supervises for the Vatican on English translations of liturgical texts used at Mass. George Cardinal Pell had been a member of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith when Cardinal Ratzinger was in charge. The son of a professional fighter, his infamous polarizing remark once was that he did not “think a Christian can say ‘I’m a lover, not a fighter.’ ”

William Joseph Levada, the current Prefecct of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, had been a member of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith under Joseph Cardinal Ratzinger. He is an American from Southern California.

Archbishop Tarcisio Bertone was Cardinal Ratzinger’s chief canon lawyer having been named in 1995 Secretary of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith before Archbishop Bertone left the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith to become Archbishop of Genoa. In 2006, Archbishop Tarcisio Bertone became Secretary of State under Pope Benedict. He is a current member of the Congregation for Divine Worship and the Discipline of Sacraments.

The current Prefect of the Congregation for Divine Worship and the Discipline of the Sacraments is Antonio Cañizares Llovera. Nicknamed “Little Ratzinger,” Antonio Cardinal Cañizares Llovera had formerly been a member of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith when Cardinal Ratzinger was in charge, since 10 November 1996, and was named Archbishop of Granada on 10 December 1996. He does NOT speak English.

Cardinal Marc Ouellet of Canada, one of Pope Benedict closest friends, is also a voting member of the the Congregation for Divine Worship and the Discipline of the Sacraments. He is the prefect of the Congregation for Bishops.

The men from the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith had long focused upon punishment with those who disagreed with their perspective about shared belief. And now the men were scattered throughout the Curia to implement their vision of a universal church throughout the world. IN ONE SMALL STEP FOR MAN, one more blow to episcopal collegiality.

In an all too politicized church over what groups can legitimately call themselves Catholic, today it is reported the Vatican was “extremely irritated” by the WORDING, as the Irish foreign ministry was closing its Vatican embassy because “it yields no economic return”, particularly as the Vatican sees its diplomatic role as promoting human values.  Maybe like in days of old, in the reign of monarchs, as in the Sport of Kings, in the breeding, not always noticeable or understandable by the unwashed, or those who are being pruned away who also are “extremely irritated” by the wording, in the revised English Order the Mass, affecting the intimate ability to pray with a possessive fervor. In our native tongue.

There is a noted difference between translators and interpreters. When all along the goal of a good translator, on a dead language, should be to promote quality services of its people – in union. And there was a lot more power and might in having a good interpreter, when you sent missionaries out to the salvage world.

So why do languages die? Like Latin, or Irish? In Ireland, when your people had lived under a dominant culture…. because English was a language forced upon the Irish… and you were supposed to reflect THEIR culture. To convey how you overcame anger, through stories of power and might. In song. There the people had come to know how to convey knowledge or understanding. “To be loyal to the church is to expose evil for the good of the church,” Paddy McCafferty said about Ireland’s Association of Catholic Priests who were complaining about the new translation, among other things, where the sentences were so long they could be seen from outer space. Yes, there was a storm in Ireland about the new translation, among other things. Where historically the people mindful of the subtleties, day in and day out, of language — the reference point for all human relationships — knew something about a dying language.

So why do languages, like currencies, die? Like Latin, or Irish. The significance was when people gathered to say together words with a living language which defined us to God. Precise words which to people somehow connected had recognized meaning. Here! When all along the goal of a good translator, on a dead language, should be to promote quality services of its people – in union.

The fallacy behind the call for language change in an English — which has NOT changed — is that you lose something when things change through the life of a living language. Simply what would be lost is union, layer by layer. So you gave up your own currency to use something more universally accepted?

Language was just a measure of what leaders think about worth, and apparently the one-time members of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith do not think much about the English-speaking world and the manner of our prayers or the strength of the faith within the congregation, as expressed in the measure in language, since 1965.

It was as if the chosen English words have not been valued by the English-speaking people in my country. The fallacy, as if these were just words. When the North American bishops who fought the change understood, until the command came down from Rome to “Just do it.”  As if this just was the Nike Corporation, or one with German-engineering like a BMW. 

This pope who as theologian had discussed the need to prune back in the universal Catholic Church — perhaps with his German obsession over clean exterior-dirty interior, or clean form and dirty content while losing sight though the human discussion, in a human perspective, over what would result in, who at the end of the story, exactly would be saved — over who exactly was Catholic? On the question of union, and human relationships, this everyday question was about union and possession where translations did have to be interpreted into every day life.

So why did people quit using or studying language? Was the death of a language just a result of, the victim of, a dominant culture, on issues of power and might? And when a dead language was revived, how could modern people pretend to explain how to translate for the world? When the real issue was the English words – ones like ‘ineffable,’ ‘consubstantial,’ ‘incarnate,’ ‘inviolate,’ ‘oblation,’ ‘ignominy,’ ‘precursor,’ ‘suffused’ and ‘unvanquished.’.

What would happen when English speaking people were not on familiar terms, when they no longer recognized their own language? When this new language was an imposed language. And this was somehow going to affect relationship supposedly based upon real authority, on matters spiritual?  Who really wanted to go to Mass and hear what was the music of language played in the wrong key?   As your language came credentialed by the Authorities who did not actually KNOW the nuance of English, but provided a BARE substitution of English for the Latin. Behold the clericalism in the power struggle to prove you carried a divine Authority. With the take-away – the sacrifice – into a direct English interlinear translation, in what Latin can never reveal what the Vatican II translation until now had.  And the real issue in these changes is about abandonment, in the ongoing papal wars with Modernity.

Read the following edited NCR column by Jamie L. Manson (with a Master of Divinity degree from Yale Divinity School where she studied Catholic theology and sexual ethics), which recently appeared in the National Catholic Reporter.  About the tone-deaf leadership, as one man lost his hearing, just as he came to power, in Rome.

”Anthony Ruff, OSB, is a monk of St. John’s Abbey and professor of liturgy, liturgical music and Gregorian chant at St. John’s University in Minnesota.  In 2005, Ruff accepted an invitation to join the team of the International Commission on English in the Liturgy (ICEL).  Ruff joined ICEL for reasons similar to those that led him to associate with the editors of First Things. He was committed to guarding and promoting faithfulness to church tradition. Back then, he believed that the current Missal used in the United States “was a symptom of a mistake: that Vatican II had implemented these texts in a way that was too liberal and too much a sell-out to the secular world.”

“ICEL is a translating agency formed in 1963 by English-speaking bishops at the Second Vatican Council in response to the Constitution on the Sacred Liturgy’s decree calling for translations of the Missal into the vernacular. Article 22 of the constitution stated that these translations were to be “prepared and approved by territorial bodies of bishops,” such as the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops.

”But six weeks after the bishops approved the constitution, the Vatican sent out its first instruction stipulating that these translations would have to be sent to Rome and be approved by the Holy See. The bishops’ memories were long enough to recall that they did not agree to this arrangement.
”Assuming goodwill on the part of the Holy See, the bishops acquiesced.

“Ruff took pains to chronicle the history of the translation of the Missal beginning in 1963, and was careful to ensure that his portrait of its development was accurate and balanced. He read directly from a number of church documents and explained the theological implications of liturgical language.

“Ruff pointed out that Rome gave ICEL a remarkable amount of freedom as it embarked on translating the Latin into English. In a 1969 document, the Vatican reminded ICEL that it was ‘necessary to take into account not only the message to be conveyed, but also the speaker, the audience and the style.’ By providing this guideline, the hierarchy was working from their own theory of how Christianity ought to relate to local cultures.

“In 1969, the Vatican recognized that these translations would be somewhat loose, and that eventually translations from Latin would not be adequate. The ultimate goal was that all the texts of the Missal would be created in the original language rather than translated from the Latin.

“But history did not pan out that way. The bishops ‘did not know that in future years, further instructions would give more and more power to the center,’ Ruff said.

“By 2001, Rome’s primary emphasis had shifted from respect for receiving cultures to respect for, if not idolization of, the original Latin language of the Missal. This shift was made evident by the Vatican’s 2001 establishment of an advisory committee, known as Vox Clara, to oversee ICEL. Previously, ICEL was directly supervised by Rome. Under this new arrangement, Vox Clara’s power was upgraded, and ICEL’s authority was significantly downgraded.

“Vox Clara was a committee that met several times a year for three days at a time. ICEL was a high-functioning office staffed with full-time employees, consultants and translators. And yet, Vox Clara was suddenly entrusted with the power to override any of ICEL’s work.

“More than 7,000 consultants worked on various aspects of ICEL’s translation of the new Missal. Every translator was appointed by invitation only — and he was appointed by someone to whom he was ultimately obedient. Ruff himself was not appointed since, as a musician, his task was to set the new translations to melodies.

“The process was highly secretive. No progress reports were ever published, and no drafts were made available to those who requested them. This was a marked departure from the protocol followed by ICEL in the 1980s and 1990s.  Apparently, the Holy See tired — as older people often do — of the long struggle into twilight with first the International Committee on English in the Liturgy (ICEL). This had been the main English liturgical translation body. The Holy See ordered the then body of the International Commission on English in the Liturgy (ICEL) restructured, with its bylaws changed, and then mandating a new philosophy concerning translations for the new edition of the Roman Missal.

“ICEL completed its translation of the new Missal in 2008, and the text was handed over to Vox Clara and the Vatican. Rome made more than 10,000 changes to ICEL’s text, many of them unexplainable. The resulting translations from the Latin were so literal that some of the renderings in English sounded convoluted, if not confusing.

“Worst of all, the Vatican’s version wasn’t based on the final draft submitted by ICEL.

“‘It was as if they pulled up the wrong file to work on. The last three years of consultation felt as if it was all for nothing,’ Ruff said. Even though more than 100 bishops approved ICEL’s work, Rome trumped them all.

“’The bishops would be critical of Rome’s translations over drinks at night, but the next day we would read that they were publicly defending the new Missal as a great moment of renewal. Our problem is that our structure doesn’t allow people to say what they believe for the good of the church.’

“Ruff said he doesn’t think all of the changes in the new Missal are bad. But because the process was so cloaked in secrecy, it necessarily became tainted.

“‘If there had been more collaboration at the table, those who are upset or confused by the new translations might have had the opportunity to see the reasons for the changes,’ Ruff said. ‘This lack of transparency leads us to automatically assume the worst of church leadership.’

“Beyond his objections as a liturgist, on a pastoral level this cumbersome wording worries Ruff. These are large problems that pervade the church, though in a church that Ruff intends to engage in and be a part of for the rest of his life. ‘Our system is not set up to tell the truth. It is not possible for those doing the work to say to those in charge “this isn’t working.” This,’ he said, ‘is not exactly a hot-button issue in the way issues of sexuality are. I would hope that we could at least have a variety of opinions about translation.’

“He has learned, however, that this new translation ‘reflects deeply problematic views of the relationship between the See of Peter and local church, the relationship between the church and culture, and the relationship between tradition and the ongoing need for renewal,’ he said.

“His own disillusionment with the institutional church has sparked a new kind of creative vision. He now dreams of a renewed church that honors the prophetic tradition while also celebrating the beauty of tradition. ‘I would love to belong to a community that was working for the transformation of unjust structures in church and society as well as offering direct outreach to the victims of oppression,’ he said.”

Forty-five years after the groundbreaking and liberating document on the sacred liturgy, Sacrosanctum Concilium – that great Magna Carta which transcended ecclesiastical politics in an overwhelming consensus of the bishops of the world which had passed 2,147 to 4 – now comes this obscure 1960s-era strategy known as Operation Twist. Like in the strategy employed by the Federal Reserve Bank, in August 2011.

From the Latin, tyrannus

Officials of The Federal Reserve Bank want to know how investors might respond to changes in monetary policy and to avoid surprising markets. According to interviews and hundreds of pages of documents obtained by The Wall Street Journal, Nancy Lazar, an economist with International Strategy & Investment Group Inc., is among a group of well-connected investors and analysts “with access to top Federal Reserve officials who give them a chance at early clues to the central bank’s next policy moves. The access is part of a push by hedge funds and other traders to get more information about the inner workings of government. Developments in Washington have become more important, after the financial crisis in 2008 spawned new regulations and a stronger hand by lawmakers in businesses. … Conversations are important to both sides, making it difficult for the Fed to completely close its doors to traders and analysts,” reports the Wall Street Journal.

In ways mysterious and discomforting comes this change involving the foundation of the profundity of style, of stories, in language of the WORD ethic. Mindful of the subtlety of human language and its power, this subtlety of language is one reference point for what divides me and my community from outsiders. (If you recall the Christmas story, Jesus was born as an outsider.) Those temporal rulers from far away had what interest to preserve our local language, when language was the outward sign to the insiders, about things working deep within? Language, my language, was the communal means, before Geiger counters and seismographs, to find the Truth before upheaval. It was a real relationship thing. Here.

This perspective of the institution – its connection of this community to the outside world as well as its own connection to communal sins – as a church was trying to pass on the old robes of authority, not recognized by the next generation because of a recognition of what this approach had caused the prior generation. Attempting to address the issues but in a vernacular that was not readily understood here, a church now wanted me to now pray, if not live, unquestioning when inheritance and fertility had once seemed so personal. 

When the decision to change the manner of prayer was about communal sins, like in Germany. Post-war, when there had once been the shame in such a nation. When the seat of Saint Peter now wanted me to now pray unquestioning, based upon the same mysterious foundation which had led to cover-ups and misunderstandings exposed throughout the world. When you obeyed rules based upon a relationship you were born into. When a child obeyed authority, without a developed interpreted perspective into every day life of power. When the best part of my prayer life was in the questioning of Creation.

About the continual movement in the story of communal sins. There was the affect on each and every relationship of the invisible communal sin. Whether just living unquestioning, or trying to figure the world outside.  About acceptance, within a relationship, over past inheritance, and then over presenting that inheritance to the next generation.  Why did I have all of this, and what was happening here in comparison to what once had happened here, to this community?

Did we have communal sin here?  What were we doing to change?  About communal sins, like in Germany. Post-war, the shame of a nation. Did Israel now have some kind of communal sins of their own these days? What were the causes?  Language?  Nationality?  Ways of thinking? There was just a banality of goodness and/or evil, or there were causes? To live unquestioning on issues of authority? And the expiation?

Yes, as the Seat of Saint Peter forces the biggest ‘stress test’ on the English speaking world, English sentences heard at the preface will be more than eighty words long. The fear, the unsettling fear associated with power on issues of infallibility over matters of faith if not morals – in the Church Too Big To Fail – on issues of unity, in the decade when there has been epic challenge to unity in the apostolic visits to nunneries, to the reality of those child abuse cases.

George Cardinal Pell, was the Australian bishop believed to have been a “campaign manager” behind Joseph Ratinzger’s 2005 election to the papal chair. This one time jock, educated abroad in Rome, was a force behind the scenes changing the rules of engagement. George Cardinal Pell had been chairman of the blue-ribbon Vox Clara Committee – think of it as some kind of supercommittee in Washington – which “consulted” the Congregation for Divine Worship and the Discipline of the Sacraments overseeing the text’s preparation, on the wholesale new translation of the Mass-book, soon to become the first vernacular text employed across the whole English-speaking world. With regard to liturgical reform, which is fundamental for the New Evangelization, and so after the corrections on the part of the Prefect of the Congregation for Divine Worship and the Discipline of the Sacraments. When the enforcement of the existing rules seemed totally out of control, due to the existing apparatus, and the language of the Mass is now being used as a tool – some would even say as a weapon — to advance specific agendae with promises of unachievable historic fixes which could be approved by only paid staffers and blood relatives. Because we were such imperfect beings. In need of the approval of such liturgical innovations.

The continual movement in the story: Like within the Mount of Olives when they come to take you away. As the new scribes and Pharisees like George Cardinal Pell made me feel like an outsider each and every Sunday at Mass. And I felt so much like Mary Magdalene that first Easter asking: “Where have you taken my Lord?”

See http://www.thetablet.co.uk/news/1927/0/-priests-and-bishops-latest-to-say-english-missal-translation-needs-overhaul

Foundation for Evangelization through the Media (FEM)

http://www.blogsurfer.us/?url=https://paperlessworld.wordpress.com/2011/11/07/how-the-change-in-the-mass-in-english-came-to-be/

Off-Broadway, Nunsense

Last October, at an uncle’s birthday party, I happen to talk to a former Dominican Sister of Sinsinawa who I think had once lived next door to my grandmother. I happen to mention to her the game that my first-grader teacher had us play – a game that I only had recently recalled which had a lot more unstated spiritual nature. Maybe once a week, a first-grader would come to the front of the room and participate in the “Who is it?” game.

It was in the days Mark Goodson and Bill Todman Productions. With “Beat the Clock.” “To Tell the Truth.” “I’ve Got a Secret.” The child would be blind-folded and got to ask only what seemed to be designated, ritual-like questions.

“Who is it?’
“It is I.’

And the blind-folded first grader would have to somehow resolve the identity of the questioner.

Last night I read the website of the Dominican Sisters of Sinsinawa, wondering whatever happened to my sixth grade teacher. In reading other obits, I was surprised how familiar I was with the schools that these Dominican Sisters of Sinsinawa had taught at. Churches in the Midwest where I had worshipped, long after first grade.

Like God, the Dominican Sisters of Sinsinawa had been everywhere: at St. Joseph’s Cathedral in Sioux Falls, St. Celia’s in Omaha, St. John Cathedral in Milwaukee, Queen of Peace in Madison, or at St. Mary in Evanston.

A child’s first perspective on issues of power, in the outside world – the world outside of parents, where parents rules — and the world seemed pretty good. Except when you had peas served with the chicken.

I saw the obit last night of my first grade teacher, Sister Pancratius Ritacca, OP, who was a member of the order of the Dominican Sisters of Sinsinawa. That is what the OP meant. To a six-year old, she seemed really old at the time she taught me. Hidden, at the time, not so unlike a modern Muslim women is, behind a veil. Including her neck.

There were fifty first-graders in that class, in the days a few years before Vatican II, when sisters were seen as a part of a work force for ecclesial projects. Dominican Sisters of Sinsinawa did not get to complain about class size when, after all, this was the reason they had signed on, wearing their wimples, to teach.

Yes, once upon a time Dominican Sisters of Sinsinawa had been everywhere. Maybe because of the affect of all those Mark Goodson and Bill Todman Productions, the good sisters were no longer at these Midwest parish schools. There had never really been an investigation as to why, until 2008. (And yesterday, I read where it sounds as if that investigation was cancelled. By Brazilian Archbishop João Bráz de Aviz, who was appointed in January as the new prefect of the Congregation for Institutes of Consecrated Life and Societies of Apostolic Life . Good riddance to the last guy!)

If you are attending in its 25th year, the off-Broadway Production of Nunsense, you might be unaware of the profound deep part of a woman who dedicates herself to teach, for no compensation. By the costumes used, no one was messing with the black and white world of the Dominican Sisters of Sinsinawa. Someone had made light of all the nonsense that was imposed by the Sisters of St. Joseph or the Sisters of St. Francis. And the former nuns I knew, just loved it. The ones who had once taught in schools when tuition charged was $35 per year. And year after year there were new kids to teach. Kids who were a lot cuter in first grade than they had been in the eighth grade. Kids who had absorbed all of this knowledge and set off into the world.

There was no investigation as to why the valuation of Dominican Sisters of Sinsinawa had fallen to a disregard, in the modern world until the one undertaken in 2008 by the powers that be in Rome. The people in the pews seemed to understand what had happened as a nation became more urban, as ethnic enclaves in the cities where most Catholics over fifty had grown up had been broken up by the idea of living outside the urban core. And because after Vatican II, when the veils came off, these women religious now are striving to work collaboratively with the ordained leadership of the church,” yet still as “a prophetic life form in the church.” Sr. Kathleen Popko, president of the Sisters of Providence, said that Women Religious “must not be co-opted for institutional purposes, enforcing its teachings and policies,” but rather “Insisting that they are not to be seen as a “work force for ecclesial projects.”

Not some kind of secret agent of the church, Sister Pancratius Ritacca had one day minstered to a frightened first grader who had been washing the chalk board and emptying a pail of water in the Men’s room, when another kid about fourteen had threatened, for some unknown reason, to kill him. Sister Pancratius Ritacca who knew there was evil in the world ran faster than Sally Fields, who later would be known as the Flying Nun, to catch the culprit.

“Who is it?”
“It is I.’

Sister Pancratius Ritacca, OP, professed vows in 1939, and in doing so gave up in a way her Italian heritage to become a member of a universal church which ministered, in elementary education, teaching at St. Thomas Aquinas in Milwaukee, at St. Cajetan in Chicago, at Visitation in Kewanee, IL, at Incarnation in Minneapolis, at St. Patrick in Ottawa, IL, at St. Joseph in Baraboo, WI, at St. Mary in Evanston, and at St. Thomas Aquinas, in Kenosha.

It is said that Sr. Pancratius enjoyed telling jokes and riddles. Riddles about the God who once upon a time described Himself as I Am Who Am.

In Kenosha, Sr. Pancratius led Bible studies, ministered in family care, did home visits, and taught religious education. I recall on Good Friday in 1959, she suggested that all fifty first-grader stay home, inside between the hours of noon and three. I looked in horror when she saw me at a three o’clock, and witnessed that I had not stayed in…..as I marched forward to kiss the holy cross.

In the chat nine months ago with the former Dominican sister of Sinsinawa who after telling me that Sr. Pancratius had died, I said it was not possible. My Sister Pancratius would have to be 130 years old. Or older. And I described the prophetic life form game:

Then I looked last night and found her picture, confirming that she had died. On February 4, 2010. The woman who had taught me how to read. And for the first time I saw her hair. And her neck. And those eyes. The Italian ones in so much rage that someone had threatened to kill me. And I thought again of that game. And the riddle about the God who once upon a time described Himself as I Am Who Am.

“Who is it?”
“It is I.’


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On Irish Politics and Irish Religion

The Irish Times reported on December 8, 2009 Pope Benedict XVI had invited Cardinal Sean Brady and Archbishop Diarmuid Martin to a meeting on December 11th to discuss “the painful situation” in the Catholic Church in Ireland, per confirmation by a Vatican official. The papal nuncio to Ireland will attend along with senior Vatican Curia figures with specific competence in this area,” according to Vatican spokesman Father Federico Lombardi.

The Irish Times on December 4, 2009 reported that Fine Gael leader Enda Kenny said it was discourteous that Papal Nuncio in Ireland did not respond to the two letters sent to him by the Murphy commission in February 2007 and earlier in 2009. The previous reluctance of the Papal Nuncio in Ireland to contribute to the report, and then the delay of one week before finally commenting upon findings of the Murphy commission have led to calls for expulsion of the Papal Nuncio in Ireland. Fine Gael leader in the House, Frances Fitzgerald, said the report of the Murphy commission should mark a defining moment in the relations between church and State. The Papal Nuncio in Ireland has denied ’showing contempt’ for the State institutions by refusing to respond to requests from the Murphy commission for information, according to Ivana Bacik (Labor).

The Vatican, through the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, responded to the Irish Department of Foreign Affairs, indicating that the communication was not made through the proper channel, he added. In making their requests, the Murphy commission undoubtedly established that it was the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, under then prefect Joseph Cardinal Ratzinger, who took control of issues of sexual abuse by priests sometime around 2001. So the Irish political parties were now in a row over why the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith did not reply.

Replying to Fine Gael leader Enda Kenny, the Vatican’s view was, as the commission had been established under government authority through the Department of Justice, such communication should be routed through diplomatic channels and in accordance with international customs, Taoiseach Brian Cowen said. The Holy See’s approach was, according to Taoiseach Brian Cowen, consistent with international law where dealings between states should be conducted via the diplomatic channel unless other arrangements were made by mutual consent. He said that it was not “unreasonable to assume the Holy See was open to responding to a further approach through diplomatic channels” to the Murphy commission investigating clerical child sex abuse in Dublin, according to the Irish Times.

Labor leader Eamon Gilmore said that the reply to Fine Gael leader Enda Kenny by Taoiseach Brian Cowen confirmed that senior figures in the Catholic Church had failed to grasp the urgency of what was at stake, according to the Irish Times.

Fine Gael leader Enda Kenny asked how it was there was no response from the Irish Department of Foreign Affairs to the response from the Vatican that contact had not been made through the correct channel.

Responding to Minister for Foreign Affairs Micheál Martin’s expression of “deep disappointment” at the lack of a response by the pope to the Dublin diocesan report, sources inside the Vatican said until the Holy See received a formal complaint from the Government via its diplomatic mission in Rome, a Vatican response would be “inappropriate”.

The Irish Times reported on December 8, 2009 that Vatican insiders say Friday’s meeting is a direct intervention from the Holy See, called by Pope Benedict XVI. The sources reportedly state that the pope will argue the Irish clerical sex-abuse crisis has gone on far too long and will urge Irish church leaders to find a definitive exit from the crisis. Hmmmmmm.

In a related story, The Irish Times reported on December 8, 2009 that in 1991 Father Kevin Hegarty was appointed editor of the Irish Bishops’ Conference-sponsored magazine Intercom, published under the aegis of the Bishops’ Commission on Communications. In its December 1993 issue an article titled “Twenty Questions for the Bishops” challenged their handling of clerical child sex abuse. “Will they eschew silence as the preferred legal and moral strategy in the face of future allegations?” it asked.

In 1993, the Irish bishops criticized an Intercom article on women priests published in the magazine and written by the current Irish President Mary McAleese (then a university professor).

In 1994, Father Hegarty was removed as editor of Intercom after publishing an article challenging the bishops’ handling of clerical child sex abuse. In March 1994 auxiliary bishop of Dublin, Eamonn Walsh, who was investigated by the Murphy commission, was appointed to survey the Bishops’ Conference on their attitude to Intercom. In July 1994 Father Hegarty was appointed full-time curate at Shanaghy in west Mayo. “In the circumstances I felt I had no choice but to let go of Intercom,” he said.

In a January 1995 letter to the Irish Times, Mary McAleese (then a university professor) wrote that “what is truly depressing about this episode, though, is the contrast between the energy and determination which went into sorting out a perceived problem with the editorial tone of Intercom , and the sheer breathtaking ineptitude of church handling of matters relating to child abuse by clergy….It is truly ironic that Father Kevin Hegarty raised the issue openly inIntercom” long before the Father Brendan Smyth affair, and in so doing incurred the wrath of those so anxious now to reassure us of their clean hands and bona fides in this squalid business.”

The Irish Times on December 8, 2009 reports that Father Hegarty said the Murphy report “showed that church leaders placed most premium on loyalty, regardless of the truth.” He said. “We live in a dysfunctional church, which happens when deafness becomes deadly,” he said. The bishops named in the Murphy report include the Bishop of Kildare and Leighlin, the Bishop of Galway, two Dublin auxiliary bishops, and Bishop of Limerick. Monsignor Dolan, the vice chancellor in Dublin from 1980 to 1997, is also named; he became chancellor in 1997.

Before he became pope, Cardinal Ratzinger was Prefect for Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith. It is hard to fathom how the pope might whitewash this situation involving both church and state over which he had assumed personal control for at least the past 8 years. In a nation that understood the Curia was operating both as a sovereign state with diplomatic ties as well as in the spiritual domain. Would this pope actually address concerns that the Papal nuncio was ’showing contempt’ for the State institutions? In Ireland.

Under orders from the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, American Jesuit Thomas Reese resigned on May 6, 2005 as editor of the Catholic magazine America because he had published articles critical of church positions, several Catholic officials in the United States told the New York Times. The order to dismiss the editor of America magazine was issued by the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith in mid-March when the Vatican office of doctrinal enforcement was still headed by Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger, the Catholic officials said, speaking on condition of anonymity because they were not authorized to speak on the matter. (Some have suggested it was the American bishops who got Father Reese removed, a story much like Father Kevin Hegarty’s dismissal.) Soon after Father Reese’s dismissal, Pope John Paul II died and Cardinal Ratzinger was elected Pope Benedict XVI. His new job duties included a job description of infallibility on both matters of faith and morals.

At one point it will be nice to see Pope Benedict’s own Transfiguration. Beyond the days of the ongoing cover up, when the immoral were involved in a great cover up. And too many people of faith lost their faith in bishops around the world, with the cover up of crimes. And too many Catholics had lost faith in the bishops around the world whose appointments had been solely based upon political litmus tests of who was conservative or liberal. Cardinal Ratzinger was on record, reported in America in the days of Rev. Thomas Reese, as saying that perhaps it was time to prune back this church. Maybe the pruning might finally start with a few Irish bishops. And then a progression to include a few other bishops involved in the cover up who had elected Cardinal Ratzinger pope. Bernard Cardinal Law for one. Of course in the culture of Germany since the days of Adolph Hitler, there had never been a Truth and Reconciliation Commission. Life had just gone on.


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That Was the River, This Is the Sea

Sailing in a strange boat, heading for a strange shore,
We’re sailing in a strange boat, heading for a strange shore,
Carrying the strangest cargo that was ever hauled aboard.

Karen Armstrong was on “Speaking of Faith” eight days ago. She mentioned in an interview that the one thing the time spent in a nunnery does is help you concentrate on what is being asked of you. Although at the time she entered the convent, there was no focus by nuns in training on theology and theologians. In formation. “You go through a process of deconditioning. And then comes a form of reconstruction. You become oriented over time to something within.” Disciplined practice. It sounded a lot like the U. S. Marines. Ritual. Formation. Some of it came from religious practice.

Seasons and cycles that spur us on to change. To move. A Catholic education. I had one. The cost these days was beyond comprehension. The collective moment toward God.

There is a discomfort in the developed world over prayer. Or just to beg? Animals that we are, with the communal nature of prayer. Was there discomfort in letting the divine nature overcome the animal within? When half the populace did not worship on any given weekend. In the communal part of prayer. Prayer and begging.

I was at a silent auction on Friday night for the St. Joseph Worker Program, a one year volunteer experience for women….Turning flesh and bodies into souls. At a silent auction on Friday night there were 10 women from Grinnel College, Luther College, St. Olaf College, and the University of Minnesota. Of Catholic universities, there was one from Loyola and one from the College of St. Catherine.

November. Seasons and cycles that spur us on to change. To move. In search of the divine. Building up an institution through donated people and money. The need for young nuns and young priests in the world. And for the St. Joseph Worker. The program placed the women into places addressing the needs of the poor and marginalized. Payment included of room and board plus $100 a month. It seemed for these lay women the start of the begging part. Of prayer.

Formation. In search of the divine. And the personal nature of prayer, in a collective moment toward God.

The financial cost of the formation of all the young…..building up an institution…when the institution had so much conflict with the real world. Classical music in the age of divorce. Formation. Helping you concentrate on what is being asked of you. When I can’t get there on my own.

We’re sailing on a strange sea, blown by a strange wind
We’re sailing on a strange sea, blown by a strange wind
Carrying the strangest crew who ever sinned

I was out with two cousin after the silent auction. I heard Theresa’s story on Friday night. About selecting a high school, and the choice she was given about high school. And when she made the wrong choice, she was commanded where to go. By a father.

Twenty-four hours later there was a story from a different Theresa, on Saturday night. About selecting a college. A niece of this friend had not been talking about her college selection process. People do not change, I said. I never sought counsel about the choice of a college. Of those life decision, I told the story of my own announcement where I was going to a college out of state. My own choice when announced was not that well received. By my dad. It was German philosopher Arthur Schopenhauer who said that the first half of life “gives us text, and what follows supplies the commentary on it.” Since I was paying, I did not need to seek parental approval in the last stage of formation. When Judaism or Christianity is a comprehensive way of life, a well formed choice like a well written prayer is part of the lifetime search of the divine. I believe that parents in such a family should not select the college. Fourteen years later my father saw the affect of my college decision which added some chapters to his life story. It was the beginning of an answer to a prayer that was ongoing for almost the next 14 years. That college decision had decided a lot. If you believed that life involved movement toward God than a parent had to let a child select the college, based upon financial considerations and talent.

Those life decisions one day soon woul make a difference. You become oriented over time to something within. That was a mystery in the search of the divine.

After that silent auction on Friday night I heard another story from cousin Theresa . She had two children born in the most affluent time in world history. It was not their fault when they were born, but her children did not share in the affluence. One had a new addiction to the worst drug out there. I heard the news around Halloween. There was a 6 month wait to get into a treatment center. When in all probability her daughter would not live 6 months with her heroin addiction.

Treatment centers. Formation. Where you go through a process of deconditioning. And then comes a form of reconstruction. And a lot like Karen Armstrong, you become oriented over time to something within.

I learned by the age of 32 how much my prayers can make a difference. And it was not just my prayers. Prayer and begging. In search of the divine. And the personal nature of my prayer, in a collective moment toward God.

Regarding this addiction, there had to be some heavy weight praying going on, knowing her family. Having heard the news her daughter had been accepted into treatment this week, leaving the restaurant at the end of the night, cousin Theresa said as she reached her car the song playing as we went out the door was the song that her daughter heard that made her choose to go into treatment. It was a lot like that moment in “It’s A Wonderful Life,” when the bell rings. When you become oriented to something happening. Only a lot more real than that Frank Capra movie and a lot like those words of Michael Scott:

We’re living in a strange time, working for a strange goal
We’re living in a strange time, working for a strange goal
We’re turning flesh and body …into soul.
“Strange Boat” written by Michael Scott of The Waterboys

Star Tribune Rejoins the Associated Press

The Associated Press is running an article today, posted on the Star Tribune website, about how the sex abuse crisis in the Roman Catholic Church comes to Italy. The writer must have been catching up of her news more than 7 months old. On January 22, 2009, the weekly news magazine L’Espresso published details of the exploitation and suffering in the city of Verona. Sixty-seven ex-pupils chronicled sexual abuse over a period of at least 30 years up to 1984 allegedly perpetrated by priests and brothers belonging to the Compagnia di Maria per l’Educazione dei Sordomuti. John Hooper first wrote about this in the Guaridan in February 2009. He wrote:

“For more than a century the Antonio Provolo Institute was regarded as a model of Catholic charity in action. It cared for the deaf mute children of families in a region, which, for most of that time, was among Italy’s poorest.” Giuseppe Zenti, the bishop of Verona, promised an exhaustive investigation, and said if the allegations proved to be true, they would represent a “lacerating wound” for all Christians.” At about this time the Minneapolis Star Tribune had objected to the fees imposed by the Associated Press, announcing their withdrawl which might be the explanation why this is now being presented as a news story.

The AP writer, Nicole Winfield, must have no clue about the meaning of numbers. She cites the 50,850 priests in Italy with its population of 60 million, comparing the abundant number to the 44,700 priests in the United States, referring to a nation of 300 million. She never cites the actual Catholic population in her story. She does not seem to make the important connection of priest count to the actual American Catholic population estimated at 60 million. The relationship of the Catholic population to the priest count issue also is never effectively drawn, though an astute writer might make that connection. I wonder how much of what she writes about that she does understand.

Religion was a lot like law enforcement. There was corruption in a police force on occasion. How did you maintain the law, in a world filled with evil? How did you maintain some semblance of order?

The news story focuses on goings on in a school over 30 years. Seventy-three cases over 30 years becomes “a culture of silence” which has surrounded priest abuse in Italy, according to the yearlong Associated Press tally. Seventy-three is now the AP standard for what constitutes “a culture.” It took more than 7 months to determine that 73 is what constitutes “a culture?” Among 50, 850 priests in Italy.

Most Christians who had heard the story of Judas were not real surprised any more by revelations that came out of Verona, Italy in January. But it was good to have a local newspaper back in the press community. Willing to throw its donation again in the collection basket. In the Associated Press.

Notre Dame


May 11, 2009

Dear Members of the Notre Dame Graduating Class of 2009:

This Sunday, as you receive your degrees at Commencement, your joy – and that of your families – will be shared by the faculty, staff, and administration of the University. We have had the privilege of laboring with each of you to inquire and discover, to teach and to learn, and we will send you off with affectionate and fond hopes for the future.

During your years here we have endeavored to train you in the various disciplines and urged you to ask the larger questions – discussing not only the technical and practical but also the ethical and spiritual dimensions of pressing issues ….grappled with intellectual, political, and spiritual questions. ….The decision to invite President Obama to Notre Dame to receive an honorary degree and deliver the Commencement address….Yet, there has been an extra dimension to your debate….You engaged each other with passion, intelligence and respect…..At the same time, and born of the same duty, a Catholic university has a special obligation not just to honor the leader but to engage the culture. Carrying out this role of the Catholic university ….we must be a place where people of good will are received with charity, are able to speak, be heard, and engage in responsible and reasoned dialogue.

The President’s visit to Notre Dame can help lead to broader engagement ….on matters of human life and human dignity…..Remember, though, that this day is your day.

In Notre Dame,

Rev. John I. Jenkins, C.S.C.
President

Graduations

The end. King Lear. Elizabeth Edwards. Health care. Teddy Kennedy. Capitalism. Graduations. Obama. Notre Dame. The restlessness.

Infidelity: Elizabeth Edwards on her husband. It was “as if he embezzled from the entire family.” Embezzling intimacy. The restlessness of a man.

Notre Dame. Graduation. Speeches. Classic religious education and graduation: how many kids today can look at the Pieta and see anything? How many adults? The restlessness, to do something. The restlessness, mine, at the age of 22.

Graduations. Obama. Notre Dame. The letter. About being engaged in the real world. Engaged not so much with suffering as with sin. Would all these American bishops come down on Pope Benedict if he elects to meet President Obama in Rome when he is there for the next G7, G8, or G20 meeting come July? Holy Gee!

The new world order. In a world without regulations. The restlessness, on display. Capitalism and the new business model. It was about scalping. Wanting the best price. Pure market conditions, without regulation. Scalping junk. Engaged in the world, but not seeing the cost of scalping.

Old ways don’t work in a world of cheaters. It was as if they had embezzled from the entire family called civilization. The human condition. In a world that no longer listens, nor is listening.

The sick. The elderly. Health care. Capitalism. Retirement. Redoing it all. Counting the cost. Leadership. Engaged. The restlessness, on display. But with actual collegiality and listening.

The restlessness in sickness. The connection of my body to my soul: when you are feeling bad. An eye disorder.

The restlessness in the elderly. The separation of the soul from the body at death. The restlessness, on display in Shakespeare’s King Lear.

The restlessness, on display at that party in Omaha with college classmates. Thirty-some years later. The more things change, the more they remain the same.

The human condition. Engaged in the world. The restlessness. The restlessness in the young. The restlessness in the elderly. Abram, with a new name.
The Pieta. On display. The restlessness in the elderly. Reconciliation. The restlessness of the artist.

“Pain is a powerful motivator.” The power in pain and suffering. Motivating people to do what? A powerful motivator even to people who are powerless. The human condition and restlessness. In search of something.

Leadership. Engaged. The connection of my body to my soul. The restlessness, on display in the connection of my body to my soul. In youth. In King Lear. In that sculpture, the Pieta.

Listening. Listening to the connection of my body to my soul. The part of praying called listening. Priesthood. Listening to the restlessness. Abram, with a new name. Making the connection of my body to my soul. Be still!

Graduation speeches everywhere. At a time of spring. It was a time to be still. The time to listen.

The equity in the knowing. The part of God, on display, revealed to me. On my knees.

What is it that makes this day holy? What is it that is making me holy? The attempt at it anyway? The education. Falling on my knees, in sickness. Seeing and feeling the inadequacy of it all. Of me. Of this human condition. In comparison to the Creator.

The part of God, on display, revealed to me. My share. Then sharing my share. Priesthood. Actual engaged leadership. In the world. Listening.

Graduated. Collegiality and listening.

Reparations

In September 2001, I spent a few days in Gdansk, Poland, in the days following September 11th. This town formerly was known to the world as Danzig, Germany. A few borders had changed in the aftermath of World War I. This was where the first shots of World War II were fired in September 1939. The world powers had once attempted to address war reparations throughout Europe in 1919. There were undertows to history of those war reparations that lasted for more than a decade.

The passions of American history can be aroused when discussion centers over the issue of reparations over issues of slavery. Almost one hundred fifty years later, descendants have wondered out loud about monetary damages owed them as descendants of slaves, as corporations grew on the backs of slave labor.

Nazi gold. The search for art that rightfully belonged to Jews who were disenfranchised of all possessions. When the Berlin Wall came down, people were coming to Gdansk asking for the property back that had never been sold, where families had never received compensation for what was unjustly taken.

In Oregon, there was a news story sometime around February 18, 2009 over the pending bankruptcy of the Oregon Province of the Society of Jesus. The Jesuits of the Oregon Province seemingly staff both Gonzaga University and Seattle University in a part of the country that carries some of the most secular beliefs in the United States. It is true that not all academic assignments within the Society of Jesus follow strict boundaries, regarding the affiliation of anyone Jesuit to this province. But the bankruptcy would seem to have real affect on the future Jesuit identity of these institutions.

A Portland attorney by the name of Kelly Clark felt compelled to issue a statement on the filing of the bankruptcy on Tuesday by the Oregon Province of the Society of Jesus. One hundred years from now not many people are going to remember Kelly Clark, if he was a man or a woman. Kelly Clark, one news story reported, was making a living representing a number of clients who allegedly were abused by Catholic priests and nuns. Kelly Clark, expressed delight that “justice will be done ….for some of these victims who have carried the shame and brokenness of childhood sexual abuse.” Unlike the Jesuits who take a vow of poverty, Kelly Clark apparently believes, as does American jurisprudence, that justice will be done with dollars, and punishments are to be measured in dollars. “My clients would say this to anyone who would blame them for the Jesuits’ financial trouble: ‘The Jesuits should look in the mirror; they have no one to blame for their predicament but themselves. What the Jesuits are seeing is simply the consequences of their own actions,’” the statement read.

Oregon Province of the Society of Jesus put out their own statement which noted the province had settled more than 200 claims and paid more than $25 million to victims since 2001, an amount that did not include payments made by insurers.

American jurisprudence does not look at the source of funding for the Oregon Province of the Society of Jesus. I dare say the source of the riches of the Oregon Province is in the hearts of those who financially support the mission of these priests. The reparations paid to victims of sexual abuse came from funding that was to feed the hungry, educate the ignorant, attend to the spiritual needs of believers.

There was a certain irony in the Kelly Clarks with their law licenses, and their “holier than thou” speeches about really holy people. Not seeing the affect on generation in his/her part of the country, where secularism was the fastest growing faith.

So how much do you want, Kelly Clark? From the real source of funding for the Oregon Province of the Society of Jesus, since these men actually took a vow of poverty. Since reparations are to be measured in dollars against men with a vow of poverty, with ideally no self interest, the real source of funding is in today’s earnings. Can we offer slave labor of all the Jesuits of the Oregon Province as reparations? Can we offer the slave labor to your law firm to disburse of 20,000 graduates of Jesuit institutions? Can we offer the labor of descendants of graduates of Jesuit high schools and universities of the Northwest? For the next generation? How much is enough?

It seems a fair conclusion to reach that the legal actions against these Jesuits who stole a part of life, where without a statute of limitation, were essentially ones of strict liability, where the discussion was only about damages. About reparations.

There was little discussion about other collaborators in the wrongdoing of sexual abuse. About police and public defenders who did not bring charges. Most of these cases left lingering seem to have involved incidents which happened more than 7 years ago. Sue the police for not doing their job?

The Kelly Clarks of the world and their own legal network fostered by Jeffrey Andersons of the world, communicating within their own network of the trial lawyer association, on how to proceed, the tactics to use, the statements to release. These slam dunks cases were essentially cases of strict liability, with no defenses to raise. In the day when the Obama administration is even resurrecting the defense of sovereign immunity, where no one could not sue the king, the Kelly Clarks of the world had their guns pointed at the Pope.

The Kelly Clarks of the world never seemed to ask to punish these men in criminal courts. They never seemed to criticize the state’s attorney with jurisdiction over criminal matters. Not when the offenses occurred so long ago. Because there are no contingency fees in criminal cases, these trial lawyers wanted to keep this in the civil courts. When there was no defense about the lambs of the world whose lives, the innocent part, were taken. Even as the Catholic world watched other adult Jesuits, who had no part in the mismanagement, suffer in silence.

In cases of obvious liability, when it was all about money, no defense attorney wanted to question the victims. The Kelly Clarks of the world, the Jeffrey Andersons, who certainly have theorized how to get at a share of the wealth of Rome. Because that was the source of this bad management.

The Kelly Clarks of the world, the Jeffrey Andersons, the Mr. Potters. There is this scene in “It’s A Wonderful Life” where Jimmy Stewart is telling his bank patrons: “We don’t’ have your money, Charlie. Your money is in Joe’s house…that’s right next to yours. And in the Kennedy House, and Mrs. Macklin’s house, and, and in one hundred others.” It was how a savings and loan work. It was how the world worked.

In the world of finance, Americans are getting a new fear of how things work in times of panic. In other times when without the FDIC, people reacted to affect bank runs. Suddenly those black and white scenes on the Turner Classic Movie channel seemed much more real. The dark ages always had potential to return. In the discussion of “too big to fail,” count the Roman Catholic Church into the discussion.

There were still individuals trying to profit off disasters. Like news teams who saved stories for Sweep Week in February and May. All those folks trying to profit off disasters. In places like Somalia. Where war lords, with their own kingdom and power, reign. Where piracy is making a comeback.
The resolution of jurisprudence over the Oregon Province of the Society of Jesus, over similar litigation in Philadelphia, in Boston, was larger than the amounts of reparations involved. There was little understanding of the undertow, for generations.

Nazi gold. Jewish property. Those ongoing searches for the owners of art that was wrongfully taken from people in Nazi occupied Europe. To find the rightful owner, in a world filled with injustice. In a world where borders do change. In a world where attempts to address reparations is ongoing, but with little understanding of the aftermath of reparations.

A few borders had again changed in the aftermath of World War II. There had always been undertows to history beyond reparations, undertows that lasted for generations. Individually. Communally. Whether over issues of slavery, over issues of war, or over issues of sexual abuse. Whether an undertow to sexual abuse, when a kid sexually abused saw no boundary to abuse another innocent youth. Or whether to a nation who felt something had been taken away and saw no boundaries in trying to get that “something back.”

(Post script: Statistics show that there are two-and-a-half to three times as many cases of sexual abuse in the American public schools as there are in the Roman Catholic Church. But those institutions are funded with tax dollars. And tax payers complained loudly, whereas people who gave out of charity did not.)

Ground Shifts

How can anyone miss the tension of the times?

Shoes. Movement. Places. Location. Parishes. Looking for a point of view.

A local church. A funeral. The Hughes. Five daughters. A burial plot.

Location. Ground shifts. Water level. Flooding. Minnesota. Where I walked.

Locations. Rome. Going to the seat of political power. To change public policy. To affect the leaders there.

The Roman Catholic Church. To miss the tension of the times. The brutality of the Roman Empire. There was a reason Peter had gone there to Rome.

Looking for a point to view. To find something to say. And then how to say it. Without stage fright.

A ‘moment of silence.’ Grieving and all of its wake was nothing but the giving of thanks and praise for a life. I had been stunned at what had happened and at what was here. And at what had always been here and now was gone. Kaddish. The mystery was in the questions.

Where does your identity come from? What gives you identity? A group? Your family? Your parish? Your political affiliation? Your fraternal organization? What gives you identity? Your beliefs? What is your identity? Who are you? What do you do? Now? In the past?

Looking for a point to view. Going to the seat of political power. To affect the real world and its people. To affect the leaders there. There was a reason Peter had gone there to Rome.

The tension between a people who felt the way toward Rome as Poles and Czechs had toward the Russians, too easily forgotten over time. The tension in the old Austrian-Hungary Empire, if you did not happen to be an Austrian. It was an unremembered cause of World War I. The stories of the capo in concentration camps in Dachau. One of their own, working in the system, for personal benefit. The Sandhedrin and Pilate. When you had been colonized, the culture of the domination of the conquering one is affirmed all the time. Or there is an under current from the tension. Ask a soldier back from Iraq.

There had been a reason to a Roman Catholic Church.

Hoping to find a human answer to all of this. God asking: “What am I going to do? With you? In a world with 6 billion others. What are you gonna do? Now? What am I gonna do now? Because I am done making personal appearances. For the cameras.”

Hoping to find a human answer to all of this. As a reaction to the world and its poverty. Its illiteracy. All of the unfairness. Amidst all the denial. The anger. The bargaining. The grief.

Acceptance and growth. “On Death and Dying.” There had been a reason for a Catholic Church in Rome.

Places. Location. Looking for a new point of view.

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