Thursday, February 11, 2016

Archbishop Hart Fails Again!

Cathy McGowan's Catholic Church oration cancelled over same sex marriage stance

Pathetic and damned poo faced of Archbishop Hart who like his predecessor seems to have heart problems. 

Has Archbishop Hart also expressed his anxiety about politicians in Cathy McGowan's position who support our Asylum Seeker policies of detention and cruelty?

Does Archbishop Hart has issues with politicians who do not support Catholic Social teachings as very important topics? 

Sheer episcopal hypocrisy in this act. 

How many  priests with views and lifestyles contrary to official Church teaching have been allowed to preach every Sunday without Hart raising concerns about their stand on other "very important topics"? 

Will Hart vet every invited speaker at Catholic events for their stand on marriage equality and overlook their voting patterns on issues like welfare support, refugees, climate and human rights ? . 

Hope the delegates at the conference move a motion condemning this lack of subsidiarity by Hart.

Tuesday, February 09, 2016

Ash Wednesday 2016

Ash Wednesday 2016
Ash Wednesday 2016
On this day we wear the mark of the ashen cross to remind ourselves that stardust is our origin and our destination. We have a responsibility for right living with each other and our Mother Earth.
We carry the cross of suffering and pain inflicted by injustice and exploitation. We wear this mark to remember  the words and deeds of Jesus of Nazareth so that all may have life and have it to the full.
Repent is not a popular word and rarely makes it into the friendly game of Scrabble. Yet it is a life giving choice we make if we are to be agents of change and rewrite grace into history
Ash Wednesday calls us to repent of all that is not life giving at the personal and social in our choices. Repentance also demands a change of heart and practice if it is going to be effective.
This is the time to fast from inhumanity and cruelty. This is the time to put our prayer into action and our alms giving into justice making.
Let us be glad for the season of Lent
#ashtag #lent #ambassadorsforchrist #lent2016

Monday, February 08, 2016

Liturgy For Sanctuary


Monday 8th February 2016

Leader 1: The earth is the sanctuary of the Lord.
Leader 2: This consecrated church is a sanctuary of the Lord.
Leader 1: We are temples of the Spirit, each of us a sanctuary of the Lord.
Leader 2: The whole earth is sacred, human life is sacred, this moment is sacred.
Leader 1: In the face of evil, ‘sanctuary’ reminds us of the steadfast love of God.
Leader 2: In the face of evil, ‘sanctuary’ reminds us of the love of God for each person.
Leader 1: In the face of evil, ‘sanctuary’ reminds us power should be the servant of justice.
Leader 2: In the face of evil, ‘sanctuary’ reminds us that good can only overcome evil, if it confronts evil, resists evil, and protects people from evil.
Leader 1: A place of sanctuary stands for hope.
Leader 2: A place of sanctuary stands for compassion.
Leader 1: A place of sanctuary stands for justice.
Leader 2: A place of sanctuary stands for mercy.
Both: In the night-time of people’s fear, a place of sanctuary is a beacon of light.
Verse 1
Fearful – we’re fearful of others.
Fearful of contact with people – unless they’re just like us.
Fearful – we’re fearful of difference.
Fearful of conflict with strangers – who ain’t the same as us.
(But) God’s embrace is great.
His amazing grace never fails to save.
God’s love conquers hate - so don’t be afraid. (x2)
Verse 2
Fearful – we’re fearful of changes.
Fearful of fighting – fearful of winning - fearful of loss.
Fearful – we’re fearful of dangers.
Fearful of following a leader who died on a cross.
(But) God’s embrace is great.
His amazing grace never fails to save.
God’s love conquers hate - so don’t be afraid. (x2)
Don’t be afraid. Don’t be afraid. (repeating)….
Leader 1:
For Mercy has a human heart;
Pity, a human face;
And Love, the human form divine,
And Peace, the human dress.
And all must love the human form,
(Each person), Turk, or Jew,
Where Mercy, Love and Pity dwell,
There God is dwelling too.
- Poet, William Blake.
Leader 2:
In the Lord I take refuge. For the Lord is righteous, he loves justice; the upright will see his face. I will take refuge in the shadow of your wings. Let all who take refuge in you be glad; let them ever sing for joy. Spread your protection over them, that they may rejoice in you.
- The Book of Psalms
Leader 1:
“I was hungry and you gave me food; thirsty and you gave me drink. I was sick and you visited me, naked and you clothed me. I was a stranger and you welcomed me; in prison and you came to me. For whenever you did this to the least of these, my children, you did it to me.”
- Jesus Christ.
Leader 2:
“If they come for the innocent, without stepping over your body, cursed be your religion and your life.”
- Phil Berrigan, anti-war campaigner and founder of Ploughshares.
The Leader asks the people to respond to each statement with the phrase: “Together, we make this stand.”
Leader 1: We speak to those in Australia, vulnerable and afraid, who now face being returned to Nauru. This, and other places of sanctuary, will offer you protection and care.
People: Together, we make this stand.
Leader 2: You have endured enough trauma, and we will do our best to stand between you and further harm.
People: Together, we make this stand.
Leader 1: With you we share a common humanity, and we will resist all those who put politics, law or power ahead of the dignity of all people.
People: Together, we make this stand.
Leader 2: It is not in our name that our Government detains and oppresses you. In this place, you will be treated with dignity and consideration.
People: Together, we make this stand.
Leader 1: We will remind each other, and our Government, that when one of us suffers, we all suffer, and none of us is free unless we are all free.
People: Together, we make this stand.
Leader 2: Sanctuary is not just a building – it is a movement, a place in the heart, a community of care. We will be people of sanctuary, and we will be here for you.
People: Together, we make this stand.
A Leader calls the group to a minute’s silence.
The Leader then invites the whole group to share in a simple chant (a bit like Taize, for those who know that style). The words will be:
Men lead: Let them stay.
Women respond: Sanctuary.
(Liturgy composed by David Busch with Dave Andrews)

#LetThemStay #Sanctuary #LoveMakesAWay

Monday, February 01, 2016

Brisbane Screening of Spotlight

I invite my Brisbane friends to join me at this screening and fundraiser.

One of the most challenging and rewarding opportunities of my working life was my work with survivors of clergy and institutional abuse with Micah Projects at Lotus Place.

Lotus Place is a dedicated support service and resource centre for adults who as children lived in out-of-home care and adults who experienced sexual, physical, emotional and spiritual abuse in out-of-home care or religious or institutional settings.

Micah Projects supports people who have experienced abuse to seek acknowledgement and redress by Churches, Governments and Community Organisations who failed in their duty of care.

When: 7pm, Thursday 4th February 2016
Where: New Farm Cinemas, 701 Brunswick St, Brisbane
Tickets available for only $15, please click here 

Wednesday, January 27, 2016

Catholics and Civic Honours

One of the headline stories carried by the Catholic Leader includes a listing of Catholics who received honours in the Australia Day awards.

Many of those listed are religious who I believe have made extraordinary contributions to health, education and community in their ministry. A number of recipients this year have contributed to Government.

My question is whether this celebration of "Catholics" in the honours list is just a remnant of the old sectarian days. Should we have some special sense of pride that members of the tribe have been recognized by the Empire?

The list is also based on high profile people who either serve in the Catholic institutions or whose public life includes religious affiliation. 

For example those missing from the list include Cait McMahon, awarded for 'service to community health, particularly through traumatic stress services for journalists' and Sev Ozdowski whose award acknowledges "significant service to the community, particularly to human rights education, social justice and multiculturalism, and as an academic"

As far as I can see no other faith group publishes such a listing.I have no doubt that recognition for extraordinary service is part of our public life and acknowledgement. I really question whether getting a gong for just doing your job, particularly in the religious sphere is a value we should be celebrating.

Friday, January 22, 2016

Images That Open Your Eyes: The Sacristan

The "temple police" have been quiet of late. St Mary's South Brisbane has been reclaimed by the orthodox and the new Roman Missal has kept most priests busy getting their tongues around consubstantial  language.

However, they may now have a new campaign to pursue. A video clip has been doing the rounds of Facebook with a bevvy of dancing priests. It could be an audition practice for one of the popular national talent shows that are all the rage.

The clergy boys are in full swing with chasubles, parishioners and a swinging nun in her habit all doing perfect routines to a catchy tune.

The real highlight of this clip is the little old lady in the background clearing the altar. Her expression is priceless. She just keeps on doing what generations of ladies have done, folding the cloths, cutting the flowers and hanging Father's gear in the cupboard.

Let's dedicate this clip to those forgotten and unspoken elders of our communities who never got a thank you clap after Mass and carried the secrets of the sacristy to their graves.

Watch the video here