aelfgyfu_mead: Aelfgyfu as a South Park-style cartoon (Aelfgyfu and Cnut)
( May. 23rd, 2010 08:37 pm)
Happy Pentecost for those who celebrate!

My parish had its annual International Pentecost Celebration. Parishioners from twenty to thirty different countries had tables representing their heritage or place of birth; most made food. We had representatives from Australia and the Cherokee Nation (just info at those tables, no food), and then food from, among others: Italy, Cuba, France, the Dominican Republic, Peru, Democratic Republic of Congo, Puerto Rico (technically a territory of the US, as Brilliant Husband just reminded me), Haiti, the Philippines, Korea, Ireland, Great Britain, the US, Ecuador, Colombia, El Salvador, Switzerland, Mexico, Wales, and I think Germany. I'm pretty sure I've forgotten some. We sang a Pentecost song, we welcomed refugees from Haiti who were brought to the Tampa area for medical treatment after the earthquake, and we ate (a lot).

My parish can be awesome.
aelfgyfu_mead: Aelfgyfu as a South Park-style cartoon (Aelfgyfu and Cnut)
( May. 23rd, 2010 08:37 pm)
Happy Pentecost for those who celebrate!

My parish had its annual International Pentecost Celebration. Parishioners from twenty to thirty different countries had tables representing their heritage or place of birth; most made food. We had representatives from Australia and the Cherokee Nation (just info at those tables, no food), and then food from, among others: Italy, Cuba, France, the Dominican Republic, Peru, Democratic Republic of Congo, Puerto Rico (technically a territory of the US, as Brilliant Husband just reminded me), Haiti, the Philippines, Korea, Ireland, Great Britain, the US, Ecuador, Colombia, El Salvador, Switzerland, Mexico, Wales, and I think Germany. I'm pretty sure I've forgotten some. We sang a Pentecost song, we welcomed refugees from Haiti who were brought to the Tampa area for medical treatment after the earthquake, and we ate (a lot).

My parish can be awesome.
Many of you know that I'm a practicing Catholic. Once upon a time, I was pleasantly surprised when Pope Benedict's first encyclical turned out far better than I'd hoped. Recent revelations have shown he did far worse than I ever knew, back when some of us followed the career of Cardinal Ratzinger with trepidation. I am horrified and saddened by what he (and far too many others in the Church) knew and allowed, and even covered up.

Yet all is not lost. My pastor preached yesterday against the death penalty. That takes guts—especially in a parish in real financial straits, where it would surely be safer not to risk offending a fairly conservative congregation.

Today I read Nicholas Kristof's column, "Who Can Mock This Church?" (I'm not sure this is a permanent link, but it's what I can find right now; look for the title), and I'm very cheered to find him saying, "overwhelmingly it’s at the grass roots that I find the great soul of the Catholic Church." That's my Church: the one that feeds the hungry, clothes the needy, visits the sick, and works tirelessly for justice. I hope and pray the hierarchy get with the program now.

The Church is not just those robed men in Rome. The Church is my husband and I; my daughter, who has helped feed the hungry every Lent for three years now; my parents, whose work with the poor I cannot begin to catalog; my younger brother, who helps feed the hungry in his area and in other countries, where he has gone to volunteer on vacations; my older brother, with his donations; and my fellow parishioners, who perform all kinds of works of mercy and love.
Many of you know that I'm a practicing Catholic. Once upon a time, I was pleasantly surprised when Pope Benedict's first encyclical turned out far better than I'd hoped. Recent revelations have shown he did far worse than I ever knew, back when some of us followed the career of Cardinal Ratzinger with trepidation. I am horrified and saddened by what he (and far too many others in the Church) knew and allowed, and even covered up.

Yet all is not lost. My pastor preached yesterday against the death penalty. That takes guts—especially in a parish in real financial straits, where it would surely be safer not to risk offending a fairly conservative congregation.

Today I read Nicholas Kristof's column, "Who Can Mock This Church?" (I'm not sure this is a permanent link, but it's what I can find right now; look for the title), and I'm very cheered to find him saying, "overwhelmingly it’s at the grass roots that I find the great soul of the Catholic Church." That's my Church: the one that feeds the hungry, clothes the needy, visits the sick, and works tirelessly for justice. I hope and pray the hierarchy get with the program now.

The Church is not just those robed men in Rome. The Church is my husband and I; my daughter, who has helped feed the hungry every Lent for three years now; my parents, whose work with the poor I cannot begin to catalog; my younger brother, who helps feed the hungry in his area and in other countries, where he has gone to volunteer on vacations; my older brother, with his donations; and my fellow parishioners, who perform all kinds of works of mercy and love.
aelfgyfu_mead: Aelfgyfu as a South Park-style cartoon (Default)
( Apr. 5th, 2009 10:47 am)
A blessed Holy Week to all those who celebrate it!


Feminists for Life is celebrating its fifteenth anniversary. Those curious about it might want to check out Feminists for Life Celebrates Fifteen Years of Activism for Women at their website. FFL's "pro-woman, pro-life" approach emphasizes fighting violence against women, supporting women in crisis pregnancies, and expanding support to families in crisis and in poverty. Recently, FFL has worked particularly on college campuses to ensure women aren't forced to choose between children and education. In these days of divisive politics, I am happy to support an organization that has had a positive impact on a lot of lives and embraces a definition of "pro-life" with which I can agree.
aelfgyfu_mead: Aelfgyfu as a South Park-style cartoon (Default)
( Apr. 5th, 2009 10:47 am)
A blessed Holy Week to all those who celebrate it!


Feminists for Life is celebrating its fifteenth anniversary. Those curious about it might want to check out Feminists for Life Celebrates Fifteen Years of Activism for Women at their website. FFL's "pro-woman, pro-life" approach emphasizes fighting violence against women, supporting women in crisis pregnancies, and expanding support to families in crisis and in poverty. Recently, FFL has worked particularly on college campuses to ensure women aren't forced to choose between children and education. In these days of divisive politics, I am happy to support an organization that has had a positive impact on a lot of lives and embraces a definition of "pro-life" with which I can agree.
aelfgyfu_mead: Aelfgyfu as a South Park-style cartoon (Default)
( Sep. 13th, 2007 07:52 pm)
Here's a piece on religion written by a psychologist (who is an atheist) researching morality and emotion. I realize I'm opening a can of worms here. I'll make my self-declaration at the outset: I'm a practicing Catholic. Yes, I was raised Catholic and am still Catholic, and am even involved in lay ministry at my church. My friends, however, have included people from many religions (from Catholic and Jewish to pagan and Wiccan) and none (agnostics and atheists).

I have been disheartened by the vitriol put out by people like Richard Dawkins. So I am glad to read MORAL PSYCHOLOGY AND THE MISUNDERSTANDING OF RELIGION By Jonathan Haidt. Note: the link at the bottom of the article takes you to a page of criticism of the article. I found more vitriol there of the kind I was hoping to avoid, but to each his or her own.

I don't want to fight about religion. I do want to encourage respect for all faiths and none.
aelfgyfu_mead: Aelfgyfu as a South Park-style cartoon (Default)
( Sep. 13th, 2007 07:52 pm)
Here's a piece on religion written by a psychologist (who is an atheist) researching morality and emotion. I realize I'm opening a can of worms here. I'll make my self-declaration at the outset: I'm a practicing Catholic. Yes, I was raised Catholic and am still Catholic, and am even involved in lay ministry at my church. My friends, however, have included people from many religions (from Catholic and Jewish to pagan and Wiccan) and none (agnostics and atheists).

I have been disheartened by the vitriol put out by people like Richard Dawkins. So I am glad to read MORAL PSYCHOLOGY AND THE MISUNDERSTANDING OF RELIGION By Jonathan Haidt. Note: the link at the bottom of the article takes you to a page of criticism of the article. I found more vitriol there of the kind I was hoping to avoid, but to each his or her own.

I don't want to fight about religion. I do want to encourage respect for all faiths and none.
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