Welcoming seekers into "the way of faith and conversion" is the most important thing we do. Think about it. If a family had a great sense of community but never welcomed new people into it, slowly, one-by-one, the family would die off. If a parish did the same, we'd have the same fate. But the… Continue reading Why Involve the Community?
When it comes the need to 'run the RCIA program' one of the questions that often gets asked is what is the best resource to use. Usually the person asking that question wishes to know which book, or series of pamphlets, or videos can best be used to pass on the knowledge of the Christian… Continue reading The Parish IS The Curriculum
If we approach the RCIA as yet one more program to implement and we delegate the implementation of that program to a small group of leaders, then we will have failed even before we begin. ... the adult catechumenate changes everything. It is a paradigm shift that flows from the radical insight recovered from Vatican… Continue reading The Vision of RCIA
Clash of Empires by Ben Kane My rating: 3 of 5 stars The history of Rome, both as Republic and as Empire, is one of those bespoke subject matters I find particularly interesting. In attempting to deepen my understanding of the subject I have read non-fiction books, listened to podcast series, and read novels set… Continue reading Review: Clash of Empires
The Priestly Blessing: Rediscovering the Gift by Stephen J. Rossetti My rating: 4 of 5 stars The subtitle of this book from the well-known writer on Catholic priesthood is most appropriate. 'Rediscovering the Gift' of the priestly blessing is something that argued for strenuously by Stephen Rosetti as he examines this significant and powerful part… Continue reading Review: The Priestly Blessing: Rediscovering the Gift
Sabbath as Resistance, New Edition with Study Guide: Saying No to the Culture of Now by Walter Brueggemann My rating: 4 of 5 stars This is a dangerous little book that challenges the status quo of contemporary society. The push to produce, to acquire, to consume and to dominate is directly challenged in Walter Brueggeman's… Continue reading Review: Sabbath as Resistance: Saying No to the Culture of Now
Three Hands in the Fountain by Lindsey Davis My rating: 3 of 5 stars A long term serial killer is discovered and brought to justice in this ninth volume in the unfolding Marcus Didius Falco series - and all because Falco and his long term friend Petronius find themselves drinking wine in a dried-out fountain… Continue reading Review: Three Hands in the Fountain
If we, the People of God, wish to enter the kingdom of God, then we will eventually have to be purified of any hatred in our hearts. We must truly love all of our brothers and sisters, including terrorists, liberals, conservatives, child molesters, Republicans, Democrats, and the host of others on this planet with whom… Continue reading Bless and Do Not Curse
See I Am Making Something New: New Institutes, Diocesan Hermits and Consecrated Virgins and New Forms of Consecrated Life by Amy Hereford My rating: 3 of 5 stars Could someone please ensure my bishop that he should read nothing into my reading of this book!This volume looks at the phenomenon of consecrated life within the… Continue reading Review: See I Am Making Something New: A Canonical and Pastoral Guide to Founding Religious Institutes, Diocesan Hermits, Consecrated Virgins and New Forms of Consecrated Life
What Are You Looking For? by Joan Chittister My rating: 3 of 5 stars The ever-changing nature of religious life in the Catholic Church is brought to the fore in this contribution from Joan Chittister. Having herself lived religious life for six decades, Chittister has much wisdom to offer for those who have questions about… Continue reading Review: What Are You Looking For?
Conviction and dogmatism are not the same. There is a difference between having seen some truth and claiming to speak in the name of all truth; between knowing what one believes and refusing to respect the beliefs and experiences of others. People of faith should speak with a humble authority combining real knowledge with an… Continue reading Conviction and Dogmatism
Does Religion Do More Harm Than Good? by Rupert Shortt My rating: 4 of 5 stars This short and sharp essay from Rupert Shortt, the religion editor of The Times Literary Supplement, attempts to answer one of the fundamental questions facing our contemporary society: Does Religion Do More Harm Than Good?Shortt's approach is insightful and… Continue reading Review: Does Religion Do More Harm Than Good?
In describing religion, Jonathan Sacks, former Chief Rabbi of the United Hebrew Congregation of the Commonwealth and renown public intellectual, says religion is: part of the ecology of freedom because it supports families, communities, charities, voluntary associations, active citizenship and concern for the common good. It is a key contributor to civil society, which is… Continue reading Religion and the Ecology of Freedom
A Dying Light in Corduba by Lindsey Davis My rating: 3 of 5 stars Our hero, Marcus Didius Falco, informer and sometimes Imperial agent, finds himself drawn into intrigue and murder all because he accepted an invitation to dinner. Having thoroughly enjoyed himself, he discovers the next morning that two of his fellow guests had… Continue reading Review: A Dying Light in Corduba
Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows by J.K. Rowling My rating: 5 of 5 stars "This is my commandment, that you love one another as I have loved you. No one has greater love than this, to lay down one's life for one's friends." (John 15:12-13)It may seem strange to begin a book review of… Continue reading Review: Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows
My homily for the 22nd Sunday in Ordinary Time (Year C) as preached during the 5.30pm Sunday evening Mass in Sacred Heart Cathedral, Hamilton. The readings proclaimed were Sirach 3:17-20, 28-29; Hebrews 12:18-19, 22-24; Luke 14: 1, 7-14. "Our readings today are not just a moral lesson on the virtue of humility, but also a… Continue reading Homilies: 22nd Sunday in Ordinary Time, Year C
My homily for the 21st Sunday in Ordinary Time (Year C) as preached during the 5.30pm Saturday evening Mass in Sacred Heart Cathedral, Hamilton. The readings proclaimed were Isaiah 66:18-21; Hebrews 12:5-7, 11-13; Luke 13:22-30. "The invitation to be part of God's kingdom is given at a time of God's choosing, and we are called… Continue reading Homilies: 21st Sunday in Ordinary Time, Year C
Cold Cruel Winter by Chris Nickson My rating: 3 of 5 stars The Constable of Leeds, Richard Nottingham, after whom this series is named has not had a good winter. He lost a daughter and witnessed the death of many other denizens of the city because of a combination of the rampant poverty and the… Continue reading Review: Cold Cruel Winter
Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince by J.K. Rowling My rating: 4 of 5 stars The penultimate volume in the Harry Potter series from J.K. Rowling not only sees our hero and his classmates enter their second last year at Hogwarts School but also the continuing unfolding metanarrative of the return of Lord Voldemort, He… Continue reading Review: Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince
My homily for the 20th Sunday in Ordinary Time (Year C) as preached during the 9.30am Mass in Sacred Heart Cathedral, Hamilton, and featuring the musical skills of Dr Anne Millard, the Cathedral's Director of Music. The readings proclaimed were Jeremiah 38:4-6, 8-10; Hebrews 12:1-4; Luke 12:49-53. "The dissonance in today's Gospel reminds us that… Continue reading Homilies: 20th Sunday in Ordinary Time, Year C