Wednesday, 28 October 2009

Bishops Without Mitres !

This ones for a friend of mine ! Bishops without Mitres - whatever next ?

They're the 2009 Episcopal Ordinations within the international initiative Roman Catholic Women Priests

Episcopal Ordinations April 19, 2009
Bishops pictured from left to right: Ida Raming (Germany) Regina Nicolosi (Minnesota),
Patricia Fresen (Germany), Andrea Johnson (Maryland), Christine Mayr-Lumetzberger (Austria),
Joan Houk (Pennslyvania), Bridget Mary Meehan (Virginia and Florida

Catholica !

How on earth has it taken me so long to discover Catholica ? It's a veritable minefield of challenges and common sense in a catholic world of invisible motives and 'lets stick to the Papal thread' stories. It's not for the canonically convinced, but for those with a predisposition towards putting people before churchianity. I feel like I've found a new friend. Go have a look here . . .

Tuesday, 27 October 2009

Ordination of Morag Liebert

Bridget Mary's Blog ran the news of the ordination to Priesthood of Morag Liebert, the first woman to be ordained, in the UK, into the international initiative "Roman Catholic Women Priests." This initiative aims to bring about “a new model of ordained ministry in a renewed Roman Catholic Church." Morags ordination took place in Augustine United Church in Edinburgh, Scotland on Oct. 24, 2009. Congratulations Morag !

Change has to be created by people generous enough to pursue the vision of an inclusive ‘catholic’ church. If prophetic individuals and groups can show how the Church of God could be then maybe this will bring about a real vision of hope. Morag can be seen 2nd from the left in this clip from her ordination.

Blessed Mary MacKillop

A film about the life of Blessed Mary MacKillop has been released by Salt and Light Television, a Canadian based catholic television network. The video can be freely watched online and is well worth a visit.

Once the introductions are over a detailed account of her life is given. To view the film go to the webpage, scroll down a little and click on the play symbol.

Remember, "When you see a need tend to it." - Mary MacKillop

Sunday, 25 October 2009

Gerard W Hughes

Being laid up in bed at the moment has it's benefits. Just found an interview with Gerard W Hughes. I'd like to know if there's any more of this interview to be found on the web. Click on the picture or here to watch the short interview.

Saturday, 24 October 2009


Over the past few weeks I’ve been chewing over the reasons why many Christian denominations use vestments in their worship, with some using them more elaborately than others. Some see them as a distraction, an outdated irrelevance left over from imperial Rome or even idolatrous. Others see them as beautifying worship or enhancing the dignity of the office the wearer represents e.g. a priest acting ‘in persona Christi.’

I’m beginning to think that as human beings we have an inbuilt desire to dress in a manner that enables us to say something about ourselves. Think of the many situations in which people of many countries, faiths or affiliation wear clothing to identify function, status or belonging. School uniform, football club kit, Masonic regalia, university graduates, Goths, traditional dress, skinheads, tribal clothing, religious habit, designer wear, Royal family ceremonial all say something about our affiliation, status or our spiritual/temporal outlook.

I think it important to scratch the surface and to challenge why such regalia are used whilst recognising that such things do draw people together. Even the rejection of such things draws people together in a similar way.

Saturday, 10 October 2009

Anti Vatican II Revisionist

As people are beginning to write a ‘revisionist’ history of the II Vatican Council this website provides a breath of fresh air, just as the open windows intended. There are some excellent essays especially about reception of the Council. Regardless of whether you are Roman or not this website is a solid schooling in the Council and it’s effect on recent church history.

Geoffrey Nobes

What a wonderful antidote to a stressful day ! Unwind in a spirit of prayerful thanksgiving as this music gently absolves and heals the wounds of the day ! This weeks promise - to find out more about his music - a wonderful antidote to some of the triumphalist clashing and clanging of cymbals style of liturgical music. Thankyou Geoffrey and Kevin Mayhew.


It has been said that prayer is to the soul and the spiritual life, what air is to the lungs and body. If the lungs don’t work properly the body doesn’t perform the way it should and if you don’t pray, the same can be said of the soul. In a praying soul the vision of God grows in the mind, heart and spirit of the pray-er.

Personal relationships (coupled with a huge dose of honesty about yourself, knowing your personal traits) reflect the vision of God that is growing in your heart and mind. This is true in very close relationships with a spouse or partner, those we consider friends, those we consider acquaintances and then the vast majority of people who we meet on busses, trains, in the shops and so on.

We both feed and reflect on the life of God through praying the scriptures, especially the Gospels and spiritual reading. This reflecting has to be your reflection, free from ‘pious’ generalisations. It shouldn’t be forced. There are no right answers. In a room of 100 people each person would reflect differently on the words of Jesus, “Do not be afraid.”

Keep a journal. Note any thoughts that stick out during your time of prayer or jump into your head throughout the day. What is your first thought on waking up ? – write it in your journal. Week by week the journal may begin to reflect God’s revealing presence in your life. You may be pleasantly surprised. You may be shocked.

I think it was Brennan Manning in “The Ragamuffin Gospels” who said, “There is nothing we can do to make God love us more and there is nothing we can do to make God love us less.” Not a bad starting point for a pilgrimage in the spirit ?

Friday, 9 October 2009

"Future Church"

Strange to have only found this site today. “Future Church” has some fascinating articles, so relevant to the renewal of Catholicism in our day. A campaign for optional celibacy for Roman Catholic priests is their banner project and they are supported by the no less important projects to increase scripture references to women in the Liturgy, celebrate women witnesses the place of Mary Magdalen as an apostle to the Apostles and women in church leadership.

Future Church believes that it must work with the Roman Catholic Church to create a climate for change. I personally think that change has now to be created by people brave enough to pursue the vision of an inclusive ‘catholic’ church. The Roman Church doesn’t want change. Perhaps if prophetic individuals and groups can show how the Church of God should be then maybe, just maybe there may be created a vision of hope.

Sunday, 4 October 2009

St Maria Skobtsova

Big thumbs up to "Gay Mystic" for this post about the Orthodox Dorothy Day, St Maria Skobtsova. This fascinating lady is so worthy of mention and she would so understand the emerging church.
Have a good read about her, clicking on the photo or above link.
Thankyou also for his thumbs up of the United Ecumenical Catholic Church !

Transitus of St Francis of Assisi

From it’s earliest days the followers of St Francis have gathered on the anniversary of his death to celebrate his transitus, that is, St. Francis' passage from earthly life into everlasting life. Here, we, too, gathered to celebrate the light, which Francis was to his world.

But, our celebration was not only a memorial, a remembering of one who has gone before us. It was also a celebration of the spirit of Francis in our midst today, in each of us. This is a time when we, inspired by Francis, consider how we can be light for our world.

St Francis left his followers a mandate as he lay dying. “I have done what is mine to do. May Christ teach you what is yours.”

Saturday, 3 October 2009

A Contemplative Mind ?

As a child, did you ever stand on a chair at the kitchen sink, hands in a bowl of water, tap running, filling cup after cup of water and pouring it into an already full bowl ? Sometimes slowly, sometimes all at once from a great height for a deeper thumping noise as the water hits the overflowing basin ? The inquisitiveness, discovering the wateryness of water. How you can use water to make sounds, long short, deep, loud or soft.

This is the ‘attitude’ of the Contemplative mind. To 'behold' the world around us, to wonder at the ordinariness of everyday life, the people we encounter, our experiences and encounters that discover us. In prayerful reflection to encounter the life of God in all things. Encountering the revelation of the ‘Godlyness’ of God in all things, as we explored the ‘wateryness’ of water as children.

A contemplative life is also a journey both into yourself and out of yourself. It is a pilgrimage through your aspirations and motives, a journey in self discovery of the ‘youyness’ of you ! How does this ‘you’ look at other people and the world around you ? Examine your motives both good and those that shut us off from the world around us. If creation has it’s source in the Creator, then all are holy and everything that has life and breath is Holy.

Here the journey out of yourself begins, as all things are therefore sustained in the life of our Creator. If this is so, then all things are somehow one, reflecting the mystery of God who creates and sustains us. As Cardinal Newman says*, “I am a link in a chain, a bond of connection between persons, God has not created me for naught”

The contemplative mind is journey, pilgrimage and gift. We discover the journey in prayerful reflection upon the ordinariness of everyday. We listen within to the taste, touch, smell, sight and none-sense of all things, as the Mystery of God is present to us loving, longing and seducing.

*Meditations and Devotions Pt II Hope in God the Creator 2: 2-3