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April 26, 2017

Note from the Assistant Editor:

Christ said, "If the world hates you, realize that it hated me first" (John 15:18).  In our reflection, Servant of God Monsignor Luigi Giussani reminds us that the final frontier of this hatred is within our own "forgetful and indifferent" hearts.  Let us strive to live our faith fully — outwardly and inwardly.  See "They took offence at him."

Our first article is an interview with Archbishop Gänswein, who has been Benedict XVI's secretary for 14 years.  It is a very personal look at our quiet Pope Emeritus, a man of "a sharp intellect, a clear diction., and a great clemency" who knows "that our measure is not the applause we get; our measure is inner righteousness, the example of the Gospel."  Read the full interview below.

Fr. Raymond de Souza writes "Time To End The Weekend" where he explains why we should look at the weekend not as an end but as a beginning.  "If we say 'thank God it's Friday' we are looking to be free from work.  The Christian who says 'thank God it's Sunday' desires to be free in order to do holy work."

"It Is Consummated: The 'Mad Eros' of the Cross" is a beautiful piece by Elizabeth Scalia about "God's ever-present 'yes' — upon which all of creation is formed and is still expanding — and the brokenness of humanity, which constantly tempts us to 'no.'" But God means to woo us, to win us, to have us completely.  We need only change our "no" to "yes."

We reprint a sermon from Fr. Boules George, in which he addressed the terrorists responsible for the two bombings on Palm Sunday at St. George's Coptic Orthodox Church in Tanta and St. Mark's Coptic Orthodox Cathedral in Alexandria, which took the lives of at least 45 people.  His message is astounding: "Thank you."

In the courage of Christ. - Meaghen Hale

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"Peace of mind is the experience of knowing the truth." - Father John A. Hardon, S.J.

New Resources

They took offence at him - Servant of God Monsignor Luigi Giussani - from Generating Traces in the History of the World: New Traces of the Christian Experience

It is not pessimism that makes us say these things.

Benedict XVI at 90: A rare glimpse into his joy-filled life - Archbishop Gänswein - Catholic News Agency

An interview with Archbishop Gänswein, who has been Pope Benedict's personal secretary since 2003.

Time To End The Weekend - Father Raymond J. de Souza - Convivium

Did you have a good Easter weekend? If so, it wasn't Christian.

"It Is Consummated": The "Mad Eros" of the Cross - Elizabeth Scalia - Aleteia

Every covenant between God and humanity has been a blood covenant, and that has relevance to us, today.

Living With a Mind - Roger Scruton - First Things

I was brought up in a culture that made no special place for the "intellectual" as a distinct human type, and which regarded learning in the same way as any other hobby: harmless and excusable, so long as you kept quiet about it.

A message to those who kill us - Father Boules George - Coptic Dad & Mom

Palm Sunday 2017, two bombs exploded in Egypt, one inside St. George's Church in Tanta, and one just outside St. Mark's in Alexandria wherein Pope Tawadros II was praying.

Brooklyn (2015) - Steven Greydanus - Crux

Brooklyn isn't just one of the best films of 2015, it's also in a way the antidote to all the rest.

Shepherding to the border of time and eternity - Father George W. Rutler - From the Pastor

In these fifty days of Easter, there are natural echoes of rebirth: the skyscrapers rising daily within our parish bounds, and the change of weather.

Editorials of Interest:

One of the Twelve - The Catholic Thing
The Bridegroom - The Catholic Thing
The Stripping of the Altars - The Catholic Thing

Editorials of Interest

Way of the Cross Led by His Holiness Pope Francis - Vatican

At the request of Pope Francis, the only woman to win a Ratzinger Prize has created a Stations of the Cross for 2017. The full text is here.

Archbishop Charles Chaput: A bishop of consequence - Catholic World Report

"We are strangers in a strange land, but what we do here makes all the difference."

New Hampshire Catholic Bishop Says Churches Shouldn't Shelter Illegal Immigrants - The Christian Post

The Most Reverend Peter Libasci of the Diocese of Manchester has stated that churches should not house people who entered the country illegally.

TEDTalks: The unheard story behind the Sistine Chapel - YouTube

The Sistine Chapel is one of the most iconic buildings on earth — but there's a lot you probably don't know about it.

Even Mother Teresa nearly rejected the divine call - Catholic Herald

It is always tempting to see the saints, not as individuals with the very human struggles that afflict us all, but surrounded with an aura of sanctity.

Five Lessons from Saint Francis de Sales - First Things

Saint Francis de Sales consecrated himself to the Blessed Virgin, promised to devote his life to God, and took a vow of chastity. From that moment, he exhibited five extraordinary qualities, which have much to teach contemporary Christians.

A Week with the Franciscan Friars of the Renewal Part 1: The Men - Catholic World Report

Each of these five friars in London have stories that are similar to the extent that each was in the world earning a living, and, in their quieter moments, had sensed something missing.

Coercion of Healthcare Practitioners in Canada - YouTube

The state medical regulator in the Canadian province of Ontario demands that physicians unwilling to kill patients or help them commit suicide must help find a colleague willing to do so.

Rex Murphy: The only thing modern universities couldn't make worse is United Airlines' PR team - National Post

To the profundities of campus White Privilege studies we may now add a fresh intellectual misery: a drive for social justice for the chronically left-handed.

George Weigel: The Power of the Cross - First Things

The temptation to reduce Christianity to a comfortable lifestyle option has been around a long time. Against this Christian happy-talk, the Cross stands in stark relief.

The Cardinal Muller Report is a must-read for Catholics weary of turbulence in the Church - Catholic Herald

The cardinal speaks with clarity and firmness. Reading his new book-length interview gave me renewed hope in the Church's mission.

Have a Bleak and Blessed Good Friday - The Stream

To really embrace the grace offered by this season, we should travel the road of these holy days at the same speed as the apostles.

How Faith in Redemptive Suffering Can Keep Us Sane - NC Register

To the Catholic who suffers in union with Christ the Suffering Servant, pain and sorrow can make sense and even, in some wild, spiritual way, bring serenity to the soul.

How to Respond to Relativism with Logic and Love - Catholic World Report

An interview with Dr. Edward Sri, professor of Theology and Scripture at the Augustine Institute and author of Who Am I to Judge?

One of the Twelve - The Catholic Thing

Jesus was not just put to death by His enemies but betrayed by one of His own. We should never think ourselves beyond the wickedness of Judas.

Pray Like St. Benedict: Short, Sharp and From the Heart - NC Register

Through prayer we will find the power to obey, the roots to be stable and the fire of God's love that will convert every aspect of our lives.

The Bridegroom - The Catholic Thing

Our Lord's death reveals how marriage ought to be lived.

The Stripping of the Altars - The Catholic Thing

The return, to truth, begins in the acceptance of God's will, even in denial of our own.

To hell and back: Journeying with Jesus from death to life - Aleteia

Holding on to hope in times of despair is an intentional choice.

Why our idea of romance is all wrong - For Her

If you've lost that loving feeling, consider it a good sign.

"The Case for Christ" and a Stubbornly Historical Religion - Catholic World Report

Christianity is not a philosophy, nor is it a spirituality; rather, it is a relationship to an historical figure about whom an extraordinary historical claim has been made, namely, that he rose bodily from the dead.

Blessed John Henry Cardinal Newman and
St. Justin Martyr, pray for us

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