Pictures - Alive!

No. 205 в—Џ November 2014
240,000 Copies Nationwide
27th November:
Our Lady of the
Miraculous Medal
Catholic Monthly Newspaper
divorce as
bad for kids
as bitter
Research shatters
�consoling’ myth about
family breakdown
в—Џ See Page 3
в—Џ Disabled artist Simona Atzorii presents Pope Francis with her portrait of
himself. Born without arms, Atzorii is an accomplished ballet dancer and
uses her feet when painting.
“There are no words to describe the emotion of meeting Pope Francis and
of giving him my painting,” she tweeted after the meeting.
College can’t
tell men from
Page 5
в—Џ We need to fight this
State religion
Page 4
в—Џ Nun tells doctors to
Why so much
hostility to
Katie on RTE?
Page 7
RTE must lay
off attack on
sick babies
Page 11
oppose bad medicine
Page 9
в—Џ Study confirms danger
of cannabis
в—Џ The content of the newspaper Alive! and the views expressed in it are those of the editor and contributors, and do not necessarily represent the views of the Irish Dominican Province.
Page 16
Resignations as VdeP row Quits media to
raises wider issues
Alive! November 2014
ONE of Ireland’s largest
branches of the St
Vincent de Paul Society
has been almost wiped
out after 18 members
resigned, individually, in
protest at the decision
by top bosses to
approve a donation of
€45,000 to a group lobbying for gay demands
and supporting abortion
Alive! has also learnt that
one of those who resigned
has contacted the headquarters of the Society in Paris
warning of the harm that
could be done to the worldwide Society and asking officials there to seek a reversal
of the decision.
Another member has handed back a medal he received
in recognition of 25 years of
service to the poor and
In his resignation letter he
asked: “What would St
Vincent de Paul or Frederic
Ozanam [founder of the
VdeP] think of funding a
group who are openly hostile
to Gospel values and the
teachings of the Catholic
Church, and at total odds
with what the Society should
stand for?”
He went on to question the
growing secularisation of the
Society and the loss of its
Catholic identity and its place
in the mission of the Church.
“I am not totally surprised,”
he wrote, “as I think the
Society has been on a slippery slope to judge from what
I see over the past while.
Conferences where no
prayers are said at weekly
meetings; 2) a recent job ad
for a manager in the West
and no mention that applicants should identify with the
ethos of the Society – it might
as well be a Social Welfare
“3) HQ’s long term plan, I
suspect, to airbrush away
any mention of St Vincent de
Paul – shops are now
rebranded “Vincent’s” and
the Feast Day of St Vincent
de Paul is sadly ignored.
Where is the annual Mass we
had on his Feast Day?”
Accusing the VdeP of having
“drifted so far away from its
core values as to be unrecognisable from the Society I
joined 30 years ago” he suggested that “the Society
ought to be brought to court
under the Trade Descriptions
Act,” adding, “I am serious.”
In her resignation letter a
female member wrote “I
know many families in receipt
of weekly vouchers and they
were told of cutbacks last
January from local conferences and they now need to
survive on a reduced amount
of vouchers.
“Just imagine how many
€50 Lidl vouchers would you
get from €45,000...
“I just could not believe the
spokesman said the public
are not to worry because the
€45,000 did not come from
on-street donations, instead
it came from a separate donations fund in VdeP.
“I am still trying to figure
that one out. I wonder what
the woman who died would
have thought of giving her
money away like that.”
Another member raised concern about “groupthink” and
expressed dismay at what he
believed was happening at
the top. “The root cause of
the problem,” he wrote, “is
that the leadership of the
Society has gone astray.”
The current controversy
erupted after it was revealed
that the society’s National
approved a grant of €45,000
towards a permanent centre
for a homosexual lobby group
in Galway.
The money is to be given
over a 3-year period from the
Maureen O’Connell Fund, set
up in 2007 to administer a
bequest to the Society of
almost €8million.
In her will Ms O’Connell said
the money was to be used for
the work of the SVP Society in
Galway city and county.
As of 2nd October, no
money had been handed over
yet, but there was no change
of plan regarding the grant.
Critics who contacted the
VdeP in Dublin have complained that they were given a
phone number in Galway,
whereas the real problem
was with the head office
• SVP head office, Tel: 01838 6990.
MARTINA Purdy, one of
Northern Ireland’s best
known political journalists, has disclosed that
she is to become a nun.
A devout Catholic, Purdy
recently told her 11,000
Twitter followers that she was
leaving the media after
almost 25 years, 15 of them at
the BBC, to enter religious
“I know many people will
not understand this decision,” she wrote. “It is a decision that I have not come to
lightly, but it is one that I
make with love and great joy.
I ask for prayers as I embark
on this path with all humility,
faith and trust.”
Saying it was “a very personal decision” she asked the
media to respect her privacy
as she faced up to the new
challenges of her life.
Known for her determined
Martina Purdy
style of interviewing, journalism for her had been “an
immensely rewarding profession and I’m very grateful for
all the support I’ve had over
many years from colleagues,
family, contacts and friends.”
The BBC, she said, “has
always been very supportive
of my work.” And she wished
the politicians well in their
future endeavours.
German party opposes Euro
в– Politicans in Germany have been rattled by the emergence
of a political party which opposes the euro.
The German Finance Minister Wolfgang Schäuble recently
described the anti-euro Alternative fГјr Deutschland as a party
that “puts Germany to shame”.
But some fellow CDU politicians fear that attacking the AfD
in such terms may increase its popularity. CDU vice-chairman
Christian Bäumler argued, “Vilifying political opponents does
not help to win over voters.”
It is possible that recently
in Catalonia we have been
living through a kind of
�soft’ totalitarianism… the
illusion of unanimity created by the fear of expressing
— Catalan author Javier
Cercas in El PaГ­s newspaper
в—Џ Fear
Parables used by Jesus to
teach about judgment and
the reality of Hell are often
quite vivid, even shocking
in their harsh imagery. They
are certainly not stories for
the easily offended.
They are also difficult to
take for those who have
tried to refashion Jesus into
a pleasant, affirming sort of
fellow rather than the
uncompromising prophet
and Lord that he is.
No one spoke of Hell more
often than Jesus did.
Attempting to reconcile
these bluntly presented
teachings with the God who
loves us points to the deeper
mysteries of justice and
mercy and their interaction
в—Џ Hell
with human freedom.
But this point must be
clear: no one loves us more
than Jesus does and yet no
one spoke of Hell and its
certainty more often than
Jesus did. No one warned us
of judgment and its
inescapable consequences
more often than did Jesus.
— Msgr. Charles Pope in his
France is sclerotic, hopeless and downbeat… If
you’ve got investments in
French businesses, get them
out quickly… I have never
been to a country more ill at
ease … nothing works and
nobody cares about it.
You get on the Eurostar
from something I can only
describe as the squalor pit of
Europe, Gare Du Nord, and
you get off at a modern, forward-looking station [St
— Andy Street, boss of John
Lewis stores
в—Џ France
I think she was a she. No, I
в—Џ A good mother
died for that right, like she
died for mine.
I’m sorry, but you came at
the wrong time. I am not
ashamed. I am not ashamed.
— Scottish poet Leyla
Josephine, on YouTube
introduced by Charlie
McCreevy in December
1999, introduced a new form
of discrimination into our
tax code.
Here’s how bad it is. A single-income married couple
on €65,600 per annum
(using 2014 tax rates), will
pay almost €6,000 per
annum more in tax compared with a dual-income
married couple next door,
also on €65,600. That’s a
huge difference.
Michael Noonan told
McCreevy at the time: “You
are forcing women to go out
to work… you are changing
the kind of Ireland we have
known and changing it for
the worse.”
But on Wednesday on RTE
в—Џ Blow to family
Leyla Josephine
know she was a she, and I
think she would have
looked exactly like me…
She would have been tough,
tougher than I ever was, and
I would have taught her all
that my mother taught me…
She could have been born.
I would have made sure
that there was space on the
walls to measure her height.
I would have made sure I
was a good mother to look
up to.
But I would have supported her right to choose, to
choose a life for herself, a
path for herself. I would’ve
he said society had changed
and tax individualisation
was here to stay.
Noonan’s attitude can now
be summed up as follows:
Tax individualisation has
changed Ireland for the
worse, has forced lots of
women out to work, but I’m
not going to do a thing
about it.
— David Quinn, Irish
We know that it is wrong
to treat our neighbour as we
would the devil. We need to
be reminded that it is equally wrong to treat the devil as
we should our neighbour
— Nicholas Frankovich in
First Things
в—Џ Neighbours
Partly to annoy people, I
say “how could you say that
to an old woman like me”. I
do it to reclaim the word
Old instantly connotes the
hunched lady or gentleman.
I want an old movement. By
the time I die I want “old” to
в—Џ Say it with pride
be something we say about
ourselves with pride.
We have to look quite hard
at the vocabulary we use to
talk about ourselves and our
ageing. One of the things
that’s most surprising is the
way it’s a compliment to say
“gosh you don’t look 75”.
What’s the matter with
looking 75?
To pat someone on the
back for looking younger
than they are is one of the
weirdest examples of doublethink in our culture.
— Professor Mary Beard in
People have ridiculous
expectations of a mate. In
my grandmother’s day, you
wouldn’t expect your husband to fulfil the same need
in you as your sister, or girlfriends, or colleagues at
You’d have different needs
met by different people.
Now we want all our needs
met by one person, and I
don’t believe that’s possible.
— Actress Rosamund Pike
в—Џ Great expectations
Alive! November 2014
�Amicable’ divorce
as bad for kids as Learning from Gregory
bitter separation P
BOB GELDOF’S daughter, Fifi Trixibelle, aged
31, recently spoke about
her lifelong struggle with
clinical depression, and
how it began during her
parents’ divorce, when
she was 11.
Her younger sister, Peaches,
who died from a drugs overdose last April, linked her suffering too to the breakup of
her family.
“The very worst things that
happened to me started with
my parents’ divorce, it really
affected the rest of my life,”
said Peaches shortly before
her tragic death.
Singer Ellie Goulding, whose
father left his wife and their
four children when Ellie was
five, has also spoken about
the lasting pain that family
breakdown has caused her.
These are just three of the
millions of children whose
lives are seriously damaged
for years, often for life, by the
parting of their parents.
But despite all the evidence
of the harm caused by family
breakdown, especially to children, the Irish government
and the whole political and
media establishment continue
to assault marriage and the
Social engineering
Now a new US study has
shown that “an amicable
divorce” does just as much
harm to children as a bitter
one, that “the good divorce”
is nothing but a myth.
And in England a leading
Anglican bishop, Michael
Nazir-Ali, has lashed out at
those who undermine family
stability by their social engineering policies or their
lifestyle choices.
The US study found that children of divorce are more likely
than others to suffer symptoms such as behaviour problems or drug abuse, to have
difficulties like anxiety or
depression, and are more likely to do badly at school.
But it found no evidence for
the claim that it is conflict
between divorced parents and
not their separation itself that
harms children.
The behaviour of children as
assessed by their parents
“did not significantly differ”
between the co-operating and
the fighting groups of
divorcees, it said.
Headed by Dr Jonathon
Beckmeyer of Indiana, the
Ellie Goulding
study was reported in the journal Family Relations.
“Getting on well might make
parents feel better about their
split. But it does little for the
children,” said Harry Benson
of Marriage Foundation. “To
them it makes no sense if parents get on well yet won’t live
together. The �good divorce’ is
a myth.”
�It makes no
sense to children
if parents get on
well yet won’t
live together. The
�good divorce’ is
a myth.’
In the UK bishop Nazir-Ali
described the countr y’s
500,000 problem families as
“only the tip of an iceberg
which is lurking to shipwreck
And he pointed out that “the
malaise affecting the family
today” did not happen by accident.
Rather it is “the result of a
well-resourced social and
inspired by Marxist thinkers
like Gramsci and Marcuse,
which emerged in the 1960s
and is still at work, he said.
Their aim was to destabilise
society by underming marriage and the family, an aim
which is still leftwing dogma in
Ireland as well as Britain.
increasingly accepted in
Ireland and the government
plans a referendum next year
to fur ther undermine marriage, Nazir-Ali noted that
cohabiting relationships in
general are less stable than
“This is partly because the
intention of cohabitees is to
avoid the very commitment
that marriage requires,” he
On the impor tance of
fathers, he remarked, “serious research shows that
when children live with their
fathers they have better physical and emotional health, are
more likely to avoid drugs and
delinquency, and do better
Criticising claims that, apart
from violence, divorce can
sometimes be best for children”, he told the Christian
Concern charity:
“Such a doctrine is a convenient excuse for parents to
get what they want, and it
absolves them from any
With family breakdown costing each UK taxpayer an average of ВЈ1,541 per year to pick
up the pieces, Nazir-Ali made
several proposals to support
These included proper
changes in the tax system,
support for stay at home parents and restrictions on
He pointed to “the extensive
evidence that stability in the
family contributes positively to
the development of children,
and that is an argument in
favour of marriage.”
By Sagart
ope Gregory the Great,
in the reading for his
feast, speaks to his
people with regret about his
weaknesses and his failings.
He tells them: “I do not
preach as I should nor does
my life follow the principles
I preach so inadequately.”
But at the end of the passage he declares: “It is for
love of God, the creator and
redeemer of mankind, that I
do not spare myself in
preaching him.”
Taken from one of his
homilies, this is a simple
statement, and even today
there is something moving
about it.
Gregory first speaks about
his love for God. His relationship with God is deeply
personal, but he wants his
people to know about it,
from himself.
Only if he tells them about
it will they understand him
as a person and a pastor,
and the deepest force that
drives him in his life and
It’s not enough that they
already assume his love for
God, he reveals it explicitly.
He is like a newly-married
man who delights in speaking about his love for his
Today many priests are
reluctant to speak frankly
about their love for God or
for Jesus. They consider it a
Pope Gregory the Great
private matter. Or they’re
afraid it may sound over the
top, or boastful.
Or they are afraid that others may think they see
themselves as saints, while
these others know differently!
Priests are not alone in
thinking this way. Most
Catholics have a great reluctance to speak about their
love for Jesus and for his
We need to get over this.
We have no problem sharing with others about our
love for football or for our
So why not our love for
God and the impact it has
on our lives and our ambition to be saints?
Gregory speaks about his
preaching. Preaching and
teaching are fundamental to
the life of the Church.
They have to flow from
holiness. But how can a
priest preach with conviction about the need to grow
in love of Jesus if he is not
making every effort to do so
His preaching needs to
come from his intense love
for Jesus who has called him
to this ministry.
Was it John Paul II who
warned priests that they can
become so busy with the
work of the Lord that they
have little time for the Lord
of the work? For any priest
this is a disastrous distortion of priorities.
Love for Jesus and conviction can only come from
closeness to him in daily
prayer, in reading the
Scriptures, in reading spiritual works.
Gregory said he did not
spare himself in preaching.
What did he mean? On fire
with love for Jesus, he wanted his people to share that
love and the joy that filled
his own heart. Here is the
source of all preaching.
It also meant he made
every effort to prepare his
homilies; to understand
where his people were at,
what it would take to touch
their hearts and feed their
How many priests today
could tell their people with
sincerity, “I do not spare
myself in preaching God”?
Pope speaks out for workers threatened by job cuts
A GERMAN firm with a factory in Terni, Italy wants to
cut 550 jobs, but Pope
Francis has appealed to the
firm on behalf of the steelworkers and their families.
At his weekly general audience
ThyssenKrupp, “you don’t
play with employment”, urging the company to put people before profit.
“I express my deep concern for the grave situation
that many families are facing in Terni because of the
plans of ThyssenKrupp,”
said the Pope.
• Pope Francis with steel
workers from Terni.
“Once again I make a
heartfelt appeal so that the
logic of profit does not prevail, but that of solidarity
and justice.
“Those who take work
away for the sake of profit
and business and to earn
more should know that they
are depriving people of dignity.”
Francis has frequently
voiced concern about unemployment, especially among
young people, and has
called on business and political leaders to do more to
maintain jobs.
Alive! November 2014
We need to fight this State religion
by Gerard Murphy
THE fastest growing religion in
Ireland today is not Islam nor New
Age. It is Secularism. That this is a
real religion may surprise some people, that it is growing so fast should
surprise no one.
Without any debate, Secularism
has effectively been made the state
religion here, as Islam is in Saudi
Arabia and communism was in
If the Irish State attempted to make
Buddhism or Catholicism its established religion there would be
uproar. But it got away with the
adoption of Secularism, partly by
denying it is a religion.
In fact, it is a religion that is protected, promoted, even imposed,
and financed by the State.
Government ministers, for example, judges and members for various
committee are selected who will
advance the new religion’s values,
and taxpayers’ money is given to
State agencies and lobby groups that
promote it.
None of this blatant perversion of
law is even questioned by our
because they have become missionaries for the new religion.
Secularism is, first of all, a belief
system. Its core is that we cannot
know the truth about God, or even if
there is a God, but the State must
work on the belief that God does not
exist or is, at best, irrelevant.
So long as people publicly conform
to this assumption they can, in theory, hold whatever religious views
they wish in private.
In reality, public and private cannot
be separated so easily, as we see in
education for example.
With God abolished human beings
just become big-brained animals
Fundamentally Secularism is a religion of despair.
It is unable to answer the �big ques-
• Just two big-brained animals?
tions’ about the meaning and purpose of life, how we should live,
what happens when we die.
So the State assumes once again
that these questions are not important and can be ignored by the community as we get on with making
money, exercising power, increasing
our material possessions.
Among the values which the State
seeks to impose are secularist notions
of tolerance, inclusivity, equality and,
above all, human rights.
These sound impressive, but a clos-
Human rights
er look reveals they have been
turned into empty slogans that the
State fills as it decides. They are a
pseudo-morality, a cover for �might
is right’.
What, for example, will the State
tolerate? Racism? Marriage betrayal?
Genocide? How does it “choose”
what it will or will not tolerate? As
media-backed pressure groups
decide? As well-financed lobby
groups at the UN or in Brussels dictate?
Yet, if “tolerance” on its own provides no effective guidance, what
hidden principles are at work, and
why are they not openly acknowledged?
As tolerance becomes ever more
permissive, is there any line the State
will not cross under any circumstances? How does it decide? Does it
depend on how far it can manipulate
popular opinion?
Similar issues arise with “equality”
and “inclusivity”. Again, what is to
Monthly Musings
with guest columnist, Senator Ronan Mullen
Knew he’d die a martyr
n a rainy day in Rome recently, I visited the Basilica of San
Bartolomeo all’Isola, a typically beautiful Italian church on an
island in the middle of the Tiber.
I didn’t go there by accident. I wanted to see a relic of Shahbaz Bhatti, the
Pakistani Catholic and government
minister who was assassinated in
Islamabad on 2 March 2011.
Bhatti was appointed Federal
Minister for Minorities Affairs in
November 2008.
He accepted the post on behalf of
the “oppressed, down-trodden and
marginalised” of Pakistan, for the
“struggle for human equality, social
justice and religious freedom”, and
“to uplift and empower religious
minority communities.”
He committed himself to reforming
the country’s controversial and intolerant blasphemy laws and he
launched a national campaign to promote interfaith harmony.
He proposed laws against hate
speech and hate literature, introduced comparative religion as a curriculum subject, and promoted quotas for religious minorities in government posts.
In July 2010, he brought together the
leaders of all faiths in Pakistan, himself leading the National Interfaith
But in all this he knew he was courting trouble. He had received death
threats since 2009 after speaking in
support of Pakistani Christians
attacked in the 2009 riots in Punjab.
Bhatti also supported Asia Bibi, the
The late Shahbaz Bhatti
illiterate farm worker who was sentenced to death for �blasphemy’.
Taunted by her work colleagues, she
had dared to speak up for her faith in
Jesus Christ. (Bibi still languishes in a
Pakistani prison.)
Bhatti foretold his own death and
recorded a video to be released in the
event of his death.
“I believe in Jesus Christ,” he said,
“who has given his own life for us,
and I am ready to die for a cause. I’m
living for my community, and I will
die to defend their rights.”
In January 2011, the governor of
Punjab, Salmaan Taseer, was assassinated by his security guard because
he too opposed the blasphemy laws
and defended Asia Bibi.
Two months later, it was Bhatti’s
turn to die for the truth. As he travelled to work from his mother’s
home, his vehicle was sprayed with
bullets because he was a “known
The Basilica of San Bartolomeo, run
by the Sant’ Egidio Community, commemorates Bhatti among the 20th
and 21st century martyrs.
In chapel after chapel in the basilica
you see artefacts from their lives: here
a cross, there a rosary, in another
place an item of clothing.
And one of the first things you see
on entering the Church is a bible, in
Arabic, once owned by the Pakistani
be considered a human right, and
how do we “choose”?
Do we even know what �human’
means when the State tells us that an
unborn child is not human? Or that a
“right to choose” may include a right
to kill?
Secularism, in fact, is a Christian
heresy. Like all heresies, it “works”
only because of the remaining traces
of Catholicism it still contains.
But as these traces are bleached out
of it, it becomes ever more irrational,
oppressive and destructive.
This topic needs much more reflection to recognise and expose the full
danger it presents to society. A first
step is to recognise it as a State religion.
But we must also find ways immediately to fight it, in our own minds
and in our families, in our schools
and colleges and in the whole society.
The longer we go along with what
is happening the more difficult it
becomes to oppose it.
�Leave, convert or die’
THE media tell us little about the millions of Christians
being persecuted for their faith today. But we, the public,
have no real excuse to be ignorant.
The internet lets us choose our news sources like never
before. The problem often is that we’re too absorbed by our
day-to-day living to check in with what others are living
The terrible cruelty of Islamic State may change that. The
disappearance of Christians from places like Mosul, where
they have been present since the earliest centuries, is a
religious and cultural tragedy.
The blunt threat to those Christians, “Leave, convert or
die”, appals us.
It’s not just in the Middle East of course. Outside the
Islamic world too, perhaps most notably in North Korea,
Christians are answering each day with their lives the question, who they think Jesus Christ is.
Meanwhile non-Christian believers suffer too. Sometimes,
sadly, Christian people have been the persecutors.
But the basic facts are that most of the oppressed people
in our world are Christian. And more Christians have died for
their faith in the 20th century than in all other centuries
• Fleeing from Islamic
violence in Mosul.
Drawing inspiration from �spiritual giants’
IN western society, Christians
feel increasingly at odds with a
secular establishment that
seeks to deny us the right to put
forward Christian beliefs and
We have to resist the temptation to go all private about our
faith. We must propose the reasonableness of what we stand
for in language that people of all
faiths and none can understand.
But we must also get some
perspective. Catholics are often
concerned that too much �comparative religion’ in schools
could undermine children’s ability to grow in faith.
And indeed it might, if done
badly. But think of our co-reli-
gionists elsewhere who pray for
a bit of comparative religion.
Just so that they can breathe
and propose their faith in freedom.
Finally we need to act. We
should not feel paralysed by the
challenges we face. Let’s
instead draw inspiration from
the spiritual giants giving wit-
ness to Christ as we speak.
Let’s keep them in our prayers
constantly and ask them to pray
for us.
On the practical side, we can
donate to organisations like Aid
to the Church in Need. Its thousands of practical projects do so
much to sustain the persecuted
and suffering Church worldwide.
Alive! November 2014
The Pope’s right hand man told them that to dialogue with
society and culture, guided by the Gospel and speaking from
a faith viewpoint, was a vital part of the apostolate of laypeople.
“The great challenge for you is to bring your faith to bear
upon the pressing issues facing the world today,” said
Cardinal Pietro Parolin.
“By your words, by your witness and by your legislative and
political actions informed by faith, you are called to foster a
more just society, centred on the dignity of the human person.”
The Cardinal was addressing the 5th annual conference of
the International Catholic Legislators Network, which gathers
MPs from around the world.
Remarking that their work was not easy, he said: “The
Church understands the many threats to family life, in the
form of policies and laws that allow or even hasten the dissolving of the family.
“She is also fully aware of the urgent need to alleviate
poverty and to support the integral development of society’s
most neglected members.”
At the same time the Church, “by her commitment to the
moral truths of the natural law”, supports law-makers in their
efforts to serve the common good through sound lawmaking, said Cardinal Parolin.
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�Ignore hype Women’s college will accept
about Synod’ men who �identify as women’
A US theologian has
advised worried Catholics
not to be upset nor taken in
by the hysteria and distorted media reports about the
recent Synod on the Family.
“Nothing even close to a
definitive, formal teaching of
the Catholic Church” has
appeared to date, he pointed
Christ, said Fr Robert Barron,
“speaks through the messy
and unpredictable process of
ecclesiastical argument.” But
history teaches that the Holy
Spirit guides this process.
Thus, in every Church council
“argument was front and centre, and consensus evolved
only after lengthy and often
acrimonious debate.”
The Council of Nicea in 325,
for example, saw “riots in the
streets and the mutual pulling
of beards among the disputants.”
At the Council of Trent “early
drafts on the key doctrines of
original sin and justification
were presented, debated, and
dismissed—long before final
versions were approved.”
And Cardinal Yves Congar’s
diary of his years at Vatican II
gives “his own withering critiques of the interventions of
prominent Cardinals and rival
Fr Barron pointed out that
until Vatican II, such arguments
were known only to those taking part and to historians who
WHILE insisting it is still an allfemale institution, an American
women’s college has broadened
its definition of “women” to
include men who think they are
women, called “transwomen”.
Synod at work
later studied the records.
This process is like sausagemaking, he said, and “those
who enjoy sausage ought never
to watch how it is made.”
In the present case the
sausage-making will involve
many more arguments and
counter-arguments until in a
few years time the Pope issues
a document clarifying Church
Historian Martin Marty suggests that today’s debates
about sex and authority parallel
arguments in the ancient
Church about the person of
Christ, God and man, and
debate at Trent about the
nature of salvation.
The earlier controversies took
several centuries to resolve
and Marty suggested the same
may be true with the current
Meantime people should
realise that the Pope will not
agree with every opinion
expressed, said Fr Barron.
Indeed, he cannot do so as
some of them contradict each
The liberal arts college, Mount
Holyoke, in Massachusetts, recently
announced that it is now open to accepting “biologically born male” students
“who identify as female”.
Founded in 1837 for the education of
young females, the school continues to
promote itself as “a women’s college”.
With about 2,300 students it can accept
less than half of those who apply for
admission each year.
“We have remained a women’s college
by choice,” says its website. “We know
that women thrive in an environment
where all the resources are designed for
and dedicated to them.”
Arguing for the advantages of its allfemale status it says: “Students at
women’s colleges are more likely to seek
academic challenges, participate in campus life, and assume leadership roles.”
But in defending its new policy, the college argues that “concepts of what it
means to be a woman are not static.”
Rather, past views of who counts as a
man or woman “are being challenged by
those whose gender identity does not
conform to their biology,” it says.
The website offers a list of those who
may apply to be considered for admission.
These include the “biologically born
female,” who “identifies as a woman”;
but also the “biologically born male”
who “identifies as woman” or “identifies
as other/they/ze and when �other/they’
identity includes woman.”
Students from Holyoke College
Oddly enough the “biologically born
female” who “identifies as a man” is also
acceptable in the college.
The only type of person ruled out is the
“biologically born male” who “identifies
as a man.”
The father of one student in the college,
however, pointed out that restrooms and
dorms are created to protect women, but
these “natural walls of safety” are being
�Battered down’
“battered down in the name of political
He did not think that students who
objected to the new policy would complain “because there is a real fear of being
harassed as �transphobic’, bigoted or
One person, however, did point out the
obvious on Facebook: the school is
admitting men into its classrooms. “They
just have to feel like they’re women,”
said the writer.
Another student tweeted: “I applied
and paid for an all-women’s college, and
I expect to attend an all-women’s college.
Mount Holyoke is no longer fulfilling
their end of the bargain.”
в—Џ In Colorado a 16-year-old boy who
had been dressing like a girl for a few
weeks, and calling himself Scarlett, was
chosen as his class’s “Homecoming
Not all the girls were pleased, complaining that even that role was being
taken over by a guy.
CONTROVERSY has erupted once again over
Fallon Fox (left), a man who has been allowed to
fight in the American women’s mixed martial arts.
Fallon recently defeated Tamikka Brents, the
bantamweight champion, in the first round of their
fight, punching her so hard he broke her eye socket and left her concussed.
Brents later commented, “I’ve never felt so overpowered in my life, and I am an abnormally strong
female in my own right.”
Fox had body parts sliced off eight years ago and
now claims to be a woman. In one of his first fights
against a woman, in March 2013, he knocked out
his opponent in just 39 seconds.
Alive! November 2014
We all have to How about rising
learn the way a little bit earlier?
FORUM to be happy
with Anne Nolan
Francis in
St Peter’s
He risked his life
to meet the Pope
f we want something badly enough we will make every
effort to get it. But few people would take the risk
that an Italian man, Salvatore D’argento, took in
order to meet Pope Francis.
The 42-year-old said he was determined to get to a
general audience “because of the personality of Pope
Francis.” He added, “he’s not a common pope.”
Salvatore’s problem, however, was that he is paralyzed from the neck down. And getting to Rome would
literally involve risking his life.
While practising judo when he was 24 he had an accident that has left him confined to bed since then. His
visit to see the Pope was only the second time he had
left his room since the accident.
The doctor accompanying him explained how they had
risen that morning at 3.30am and travelled from their
home town of Chieti to St Peter’s Square by ambulance.
“It’s an enormous risk to bring him outside… but it’s
worth it,” the doctor told CNA. “I have known him since
the accident. The importance of being here is for him to
�Great mind’
D’argento studied information technology and despite
his incapacity he has “a great mind” said the doctor, and
works as a programmer for Linux.
To enable him to read, his mother, who is “his hands,
arms, legs”, places a book on a flat pane of glass above
his face, allowing him to see the pages.
When D’argento first thought of going to see Pope
Francis he expressed his desire in a very casual way, not
really believing it was possible. But the local bishop
helped pave the way.
Along with the doctor, 25 other people accompanied him
including his mother, a psychologist, a Capuchin friar and
a group of the volunteers who care for him.
When the Pope arrived in St Peter’s Square his first stop
was beside the group. Francis left the popemobile,
approached D’argento, kissed him on the forehead and
spoke briefly with him. Then he gave the group his blessing.
“There are no adequate words to describe the meeting,”
said the sick man’s mother afterwards. “Pope Francis is
a person that needs to be met. A unique person.”
e all want to be
happy. And we
think we know
what would make us happy.
But knowing how to be
happy is not as easy as it
seems. We need to learn it.
For many of us money and
the things that money can
buy, nice clothes, sun holidays, and so on, would be a
huge help, right?
But if money could buy
Caudwell, 19, would be one
of the happiest guys in the
world. His father is a billionaire twice over. Rufus, however, isn’t happy. Far from it.
In a recent documentary the
English teenager told how for
the past eight years his life
has been crippled by agoraphobia, the fear of open
spaces. At times it is so bad he
cannot leave his room for
days on end.
He also revealed that for
him a normal day is
“depressingly devoid of purpose”. In other words, he
feels he has no reason to go
on living.
For most of us getting a
good job with a good wage is
one of the most important
things in life. It helps to make
life worthwhile.
But Rufus can have all the
material possessions he
wants without ever doing a
day’s work. And he knows
that things do not really bring
true happiness.
They did not bring his
father, John, the founder of
Phones 4U, happiness. John
was married for 25 years and
had three children, but the
couple “grew apart” and separated when Rufus, the
youngest, was aged 3.
By the age of ten, a vicitim
of his parents’ divorce, Rufus
was experiencing panic
“We took him to see various
people but we could never
find a reason for it,” says
John, as if the destruction of
Rufus’s family had nothing to
do with it.
John’s second daughter,
Libby, then aged 10, has also
suffered psychological problems, anxiety and bouts of
depression that blighted her
later teen years.
With ВЈ3,000-a-month pocket
money in her last year in
school, she had Leona Lewis
singing at her 21st birthday
But, she says, “I was neurot-
Panic attacks
Rufus with his father: �a
normal day is depressingly
devoid of purpose’
ic about my studies, unable to
sleep for fear of failing.
“Dad became more high profile as his wealth grew and, as a
coping mechanism, I developed a false confidence: I told
myself that I was interesting
and worthy because he was.”
After the breakup of his marriage, John had an affair with a
well-known violinist, resulting
in the birth of a baby girl,
before beginning a 15-year
relationship with a former
model and beauty queen.
They had a son together, now
aged 12, and John was such
“great friends” with his exwife, as he viewed her, that she
became the child’s godmother.
But recently the third relationship came to an end and
another child was left to pick
up the pieces after the destruction of his family life.
Which brings us back to the
question of happiness. John
Caudwell obviously does not
know how to be happy and his
desperate bungling efforts in
this regard are causing massive
suffering to those around him.
Nor does Rufus, whose days
are depressing, without purpose or hope, know how to be
The truth is, we all need a
purpose in life. Or rather, we
all need to discover the purpose of our lives. And that is to
love Jesus, to share in his resurrection, and to be with him forever in heaven.
Only if we recognise this purpose, and set out to achieve it,
can we be truly happy. We may
not want to hear this, but it’s
still a fact.
Leona Lewis sang at Libby’s
21st birthday party.
by Caitriona Lynch
“I DON’T have enough…” “If
only I had more…” “It takes
too much…” “It will cost me
too much…”
It sounds like we are talking
about a very valuable thing,
and yet it is often the thing
we give away first and think
least of.
Time is a ver y valuable
thing and the benefits of having enough are far-reaching.
I remember once running a
parenting class for the parents of 5 to 12-year-olds and
the common theme emerging
was the the daily grind of getting everyone out to work or
school on time.
Having suggested that
everyone present sit back
and make a list of their personal pit falls and possible
ways of dealing with them, I
made the terrifying suggestion that if the morning began
earlier perhaps things might
It’s always difficult to suggest to an exhausted and
overworked parent to begin
their day even earlier but
often it can be so worthwhile.
As it turned out, on this
occasion the results of the
experiment in each and every
case were amazing.
There was no panic. Instead
of giving out that children
were too slow in getting
dressed, parents found themselves in a position to
encourage the efforts that
were being made.
They happily lent a hand
instead of moaning that they
had to get involved in order to
“speed things along”.
Some noticed that they
actually were able to sit down
and partake of breakfast in a
reasonably civilised fashion,
You’ve got
instead of throwing toast at
offspring while stuffing lunch
boxes into school bags, and
grabbing a quick cup of tea
en route.
Family members were waited for and helped into the car
instead of being roared at to
“Hurry up!”.
Children were not going to
school having been told
things like “Why are you
always the last… You always
make us late… I don’t
believe it you’ve made me
late again,” and so on.
Everybody was very encouraged by the new experience.
But for them the really interesting thing was that the positive mood that they began
the day with, permeated into
the rest of the day.
Parents found themselves
going about their work in a
much better frame of mind.
They were more relaxed and
therefore more productive.
Some even said they were
looking forward more than
usual to seeing their children
after school, because they
had left them that morning in
a more positive mood than
Now that seems to me to be
time well spent. How well do
you spend your time?
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Alive! November 2014
A closer look at
stories in the
Why the hostility
to Katie?
THE former TV Apprentice
star Katie Hopkins (right) got
a hostile reception from the
audience when she recently
appeared on RTE to talk
about obesity.
Hopkins has upset many
people with remarks like:
“Overweight people should
eat less and move more and stop blaming everyone
else for problems they can control.”
She is provocative, but perhaps part of the hostility
she arouses is due to her insistence that people accept
responsibility for their actions and choices.
Michael O’Leary got the same reaction when he
imposed a penalty on Ryanair passengers who ignored
clearly stated conditions for flying on his planes.
Again the issue was people being held to account for
their actions. In today’s culture, it seems, people want
maximum “choice” but resent being held accountable.
“You are being judgmental, you’re judging me” is one
of the most frequent and effective but irrelevant
responses to any criticism.
In fact, the human mind must make judgments of all
sorts, including in moral matters, judging if certain
behaviours are good or bad, virtuous or evil.
Today a woman may abandon her husband and children or a man may beat his wife repeatedly, and still
get a “no fault” divorce. No fault, so no one is held
responsible for the marriage breakup and the damage
to the children.
A woman engages in casual sex but society says she
is not responsible for a “crisis pregnancy” and has “a
right to choose”. And to prevent any upset we hide the
child’s violent death.
A politician votes for evil and blames “the whip system”. And so on and on. No one is responsible.
Then there is the final outcome of our lives. Despite
the clear teaching of Jesus that we will all face judgment (that word again) after death, many of us think
we can free-wheel into heaven.
It’s a false notion, partly due to priests, influenced by
the culture, presenting only the “positive” dimension
of the gospel, ignoring the call to repentance and the
But no society that downplays personal responsibility as ours does can survive, much less flourish.
No responsibility
From fair to fond
в– The moment a man ceases to pull against the
Catholic Church he feels a tug towards it. The moment
he ceases to shout it down he begins to listen to it with
pleasure. The moment he begins to be fair to it he
begins to be fond of it. - GK Chesterton, famous
English author and convert to Catholicism.
What’s at stake in crucial test case
NEXT month Joanna Jordan
will ask the Supreme Court to
set aside the results of the socalled “children’s rights” referendum, held in 2012.
For two years the media, to
their shame, have virtually
ignored the case as it made its
way through the High Court,
as though it were of little significance.
We should not be fooled.
How the Supreme Court
rules will be immensely
important, not just for this
case but for all future referenda.
The Court, in effect, must
decide whether or not an
arrogant government can act
illegally to promote a particular agenda; if it can blatantly
disregard the Constitution
and benefit from doing so.
The Court’s ruling will have
major implications for the fair
running of future Irish referenda and for the right of voters not to be misled by any
government about the key
Recall the facts. Before the
anti-family referendum the
government ran a campaign
misleading the public into
believing they were voting to
protect children.
But the Supreme Court justices agreed with Mark
McCrystal’s case that the
campaign, led by Frances
Fitzgerald, now Minister for
Justice, was “inaccurate,
biased and illegal”.
The government had illegally used tax-payers’ money for
• Chief Justice Susan
what it claimed was an
impartial information campaign but one which the justices recognised was “not fair,
equal, neutral or impartial”.
It was, in fact, a covert �Yes’
Despite the Supreme Court
ruling, and with the complicity of RTE and the rest of the
media, the Minister arrogantly pushed ahead with the referendum.
The Court must now decide
whether or not the government may ignore the law in
such a high-handed manner;
whether or not Ministers can
disregard the Constitution
and the Court.
This case has immense
implications for the standing
of the Supreme Court itself
and for the whole future of
our democracy, for our right
to receive honest information
before we decide an issue.
At this point we depend
completely on the Supreme
Court judges to uphold our
constitutional rights. They
are our last line of defence.
This is one of the most important cases ever heard by the
We don’t dare
hide such a gift the gay agenda
THE lady had never studied Scripture nor had she a
degree in theology, but she
hit the nail on the head
when she remarked: Isn’t it
great to be a Catholic!
It was a simple expression
of her own gratitude and
joy and a gentle invitation
to others to share that joy.
Isn’t it great to be a
Catholic! This is not the
kind of remark we hear
very often today, even from
Usually the Church is
under attack for her teaching, so often a radical challenge to modern secularism, or for the sins and failings of her leaders and
Indeed, the hostility can
be so strong, especially
from former members, that
many Catholics feel embarrassed or intimidated and
just want to practise their
faith without being noticed.
But when we think about
it, being a Catholic is the
most wonderful thing in the
world. Absolutely nothing
else can compare with it.
Catholics belong to the
one true Church founded
by Christ. They have God
as their merciful Father,
Jesus as their Saviour and
the Holy Spirit dwelling
within them.
They take part in the sacrifice of Calvary every time
they celebrate Mass, and
are nourished by the Word
True Church
Sunk in despair, our world
seeks a basis for hope.
of God and by the Body of
The centre of their lives is
a deep personal love for
Jesus, risen from the dead
and now alive. They have
prayer and the sacraments
to nourish this relationship.
They have Mary as their
mother, and in times of distress they find meaning in
their union with the suffering Christ, knowing that
their suffering brings blessings on others.
They have the certain
hope of eternal life and happiness in heaven, a hope
that even now shapes their
every decision, choice and
And they have the teaching of the Church to guide
them along the path to true
love on earth and eternal
happiness. What more
could anyone want?
Our world, sunk in
despair, needs a basis for
hope. How, then, could
Catholics dare to hide such
a wonderful gift and the joy
it brings?
A US government survey in 2013 revealed that “1.6% of adults
self-identify as gay or lesbian”, about 3 people in 200. The findings of an official survey in 2012 were even lower for Britain
Yet in a recent Sunday Independent
article journalist Emer O’Kelly repeatedly stated that homosexuals make up
10% of the population worldwide.
We can assume Emer was not trying
to mislead her readers, and had simply not checked the facts. But making
the absurd claim three times did seem
Anyone listening to RTE radio or TV,
Pope Paul VI:
of course, might easily accept the 10%
Rejection of
myth. In the US a Gallup poll found
Humanae Vitae is
that 18-29-year-olds believed that 30%
at root of current
crisis in Church
of the population was gay.
and society.
Since many, perhaps most, homosexual people do not engage in gay campaigns, and may even oppose them, we may wonder how the
gay lobby comes to be so powerful.
One reason is that most individuals and groups pushing the
gay agenda are not homosexual, even in RTE. They are, rather,
using gay demands to advance a wider agenda, secularist
This morality requires that people have maximum “choice”,
particularly in sexual matters; and tough luck on those who
suffer from the destruction of marriage, especially children.
Secondly, a vast amount of money is being poured into the
“gay” campaign by governments, US foundations and wealthy
Thirdly, resistance to the gay agenda and to “choice” morality has been greatly weakened over decades by the use of contraception.
Thanks to the Pill, large numbers of people now accept deliberately sterile sex (DSS) in their own lives: sex that excludes
any link to the begetting of children, that is just for pleasure or
to express temporary affection.
Once DSS is accepted between a man and a woman, how can
it be rejected between two people of the same sex? Or, indeed,
in a casual encounter, or between a brother and sister, or in
whatever combination people demand? “Choice” is all.
Since rejection of Church doctrine on contraception had such
devastating social consequences only a return to that teaching
will provide an authentic way forward for society.
FILM Review News or agenda in media?
Alive! November 2014
Heaven Is For Real
Sony Pictures - Directed by Randall Wallace
An issue of faith
or thousands of years theologians, philosophers
and scientists have debated the existence of heaven and thereby God, the soul and life after death.
Few of them have come up with a conclusive answer.
Nor will they. It’s far too simple for them.
Based on a true story and a hugely successful book,
Heaven is for Real introduces us to Rev. Todd Burpo
(Greg Kinnear) in Nebraska. A family and community
man, Todd is devoted to his wife and two young children.
He is a volunteer fire fighter and sports coach. But it
is as preacher that Todd has found his calling. Deeply
religious, he is a gifted preacher whose sermons unite
and inspire the town.
Then his 4-year-old son, Colton (Connor Corum) falls
critically ill with a ruptured appendix. Todd and his wife
Sonja (Kelly Reilly) are filled with anguish and fear at
losing their little son.
The whole town comes together to pray for the child
and little Colton pulls through.
When he wakens though, he tells his dad that as he
was being operated on he went to heaven and met
Jesus. He says it as plainly as an innocent child would.
Todd though is an adult and, unfortunately, adults are
not innocent nor uncomplicated. They are proud and
suspicious. Most of all they are frightened.
As word of Colton’s miraculous experience gets out,
Todd is greeted with scepticism and embarrasment by
his neighbours, all of them church-goers.
Most alarmingly for Todd though, are his own reactions. A religious man and a fervent believer, he now
not only doubts his own son, but his own faith.
Why is it that we run away from the thing we want
most? What is it about humankind that makes us do
that, that makes us complicate everything?
Heaven is for Real is a simple story that avoids
philosophising and intellectualising an issue of faith.
How and whether you accept the film is pretty much
the same question the characters in the movie deal
with when the issue is presented to them.
10m views for Word on Fire
в– The Catholic YouTube site, Word on Fire, shows just how the
internet can be used for evangelisation. It provides short video
commentaries from a Catholic viewpoint on many religious
and cultural issues.
Having just reached 10 million views,
Fr Robert Barron, who runs the site and
provides the commentaries, has been
reflecting on the whole experience.
One surprising point he made is that
“the vast majority of our viewers are
young men in their twenties and thirties—the very group that the Church
has a notoriously hard time reaching.”
Fr Robert Barron
в– Ben Conroy of the Iona
Institute has done an interesting review of the “strange”
coverage the Irish media gave
to several recent tragic cases
where expectant mothers
The findings indicate the
profound groupthink among
journalists and just how agenda-driven our media are,
including state-funded RTE.
50 shades
of black
and blue
в– A study of young
American women has
found a strong link
between reading pornographic fiction and abusive relationships, promiscuity and binge drinking.
The finding comes amid
growing concern in the
West about the destructive
impact of porn on relationships and marriage.
Professor Amy Bonomi
of Michingan University
studied more than 650
women aged 18-24. Her
research appeared in the
Journal of Women’s Health.
She found that women
who had read one volume
of Fifty Shades of Grey were
25% more likely to have a
boyfriend who yelled or
swore at them and 34%
more likely to be with a
man who showed signs of
being a stalker.
Binge drink
Women who had read all
three books in the series
were 65% more likely to
binge drink and 63% were
more likely than their peers
to have sexual encounters
with five or more people.
The study did not ask if
the destructive behaviours
were present before reading the novel. But even if
they were, reading it
“might reaffirm those experiences and potentially
aggravate related trauma,”
said Bonomi.
The book, which glamorises perverted forms of sex
has sold more than 100 million copies.
But Dr. Gail Dines, a sociologist, has said that “the
most likely real-world ending of Fifty Shades of Grey is
fifty shades of black and
She added: “The awful
truth in the real world is
that women who partner
with a Christian Grey often
end up hightailing it to a
battered women’s shelter
with traumatised kids in
tow. The less fortunate end
up in graveyards.”
The most recent tragic case
was Dhara Kivlehan, who
died of organ failure several
days after giving birth by
Caesarian section.
A Nigerian woman, Bimbo
Onanuga, admitted to the
Rotunda at seven months, had
been told her baby had died in
the womb and to return some
days later.
Savita Halappanavar died in
Galway and Tania McCabe, a
Garda sergeant, died of sepsis
after her waters broke prematurely at six months of pregnancy.
“The HIQA report into
Savita’s death identified �disturbing similarties’ between
her case and that of Tania
McCabe,” said Conroy.
This led him to review coverage of the four cases on the
websites of the Irish Times, the
Irish Independent and RTE.
He also included the case of
the foreign-born Dublin
woman who died after aborting her baby at a Marie Stopes
Clinic in the UK – a story that
has been used by both sides of
the abortion debate.
Conroy found “something
strange” about the degree to
which the Irish media covered
each story.
“None of the other women
who died seem to have
received anything like the
same amount of coverage as
did Savita Halappanavar,” he
wrote. “I wanted to quantify
His findings for the Irish
Halappanavar (555); Tania
McCabe (49); Dhara Kivlehan
(24); Bimbo Onanuga (5) and
the Marie Stopes abortion
death (5).
For the Independent the
Halappanavar (200+; the
search engine here doesn’t
record numbers above 200):
Tanya McCabe (57); Dhara
Kivlehan (25); Bimbo Onanuga
(2); Marie Stopes death (0).
For the findings were:
Savita Halappanavar (173);
Tania McCabe (3); Dhara
Onanuga (1); Marie Stopes
death (0).
Conroy admitted that his
survey was “rough and
ready”, taking no account, for
example, of the prominence
given to each story.
And he attached several
warnings about the findings:
that RTE’s search engine, for
example, seems only to search
through headlines.
But the figures were striking
enough to provoke several
questions, such as why the
deaths of the other women
received much less attention
than the death of Mrs
For Conroy, the answer was
obvious: “Savita’s death
became associated rapidly
with our abortion laws.”
Many prominent commentators at the time exploited her
tragic death to push for abortion.
That led to a second question: “Why, exactly, do
Ireland’s abortion laws merit
vastly more coverage than our
standards for maternal healthcare?
“If we’re interested in saving
women’s lives and ensuring
women’s safety, why not
cover the cases of other
women who died in similar
circumstances to Savita’s with
the same passion, the same
intensity, and the same sheer
A third question asked why
a story that painted a much
bleaker picture of legal abortion (the Marie Stopes case)
received so little coverage.
In a bid to answer these
questions Conroy pointed out
that the National Union of
Journalists joined a march for
the “right to choose”, and that
an Irish Times reporter (Kitty
Holland) tweeted assembly
times for said march then
wrote the news report on it.
He concluded: “it’s hard to
avoid the conclusion that stories about women’s health,
about the way we treat
migrant women, and the way
we look after pregnant mothers just aren’t quite as important as stories which advance
the cause of abortion �rights’.”
Media begin to suspect
that Pope is a Catholic
в– From the UK Independent
and the Guardian on the left
to the Daily Mail on the
right to the Business Insider
and the Huffington Post in
around the world have
reported that the Pope
believes in angels.
The headline on the
Guardian story was: “I
believe in angels, says Pope
Francis – and they help you
make right decisions”
The paper reported how
the Pope said that guardian
angels exist and that people who listen to their
advice are less likely to
make the wrong decisions.
“According to Church
tradition we all have an
angel with us, who protects
us and helps us understand
things,” said Francis during a homily on the Feast of
the Guardian Angels
(October 2).
Guardian claimed the Pope
was giving advice to “sceptics” when in fact he was
speaking to ordinary
Catholics who also believe
in angels.
He advised them to ask
themselves: “How is my
relationship with my
guardian angel? Do I listen
to him? Do I say good
morning to him? Do I ask
him to watch over me
when I sleep?”
But why would this story
attract so much attention?
It seems that the shocked
media are beginning to
suspect that the cardinals
at the last conclave actually
elected a Catholic to be
Alive! November 2014
COMMENT Catholic doctors must oppose
practices destroying medicine
St. Mary’s Priory, Tallaght, Dublin 24.
Tel: 01-4048187 Fax: 01-4596784 E-mail: [email protected]
Family breakdown
Irish society is still massively in denial about the
deep harm caused to tens of thousands of children by
the breakup of the family. The same denial is true of
most Western countries today.
Not that there is any shortage of evidence for the
harm. Indeed, the latest research shows that the
“good” or “amicable” divorce, where the parents
remain on friendly terms, is just as damaging to a
child as the bitter separation.
“Getting on well might make parents feel better
about their split. But it does little for the children,” said one expert in the field. “To them it
makes no sense if parents get on well yet won’t
live together. The �good divorce’ is a myth.”
In fact, it is now a blatant lie, just as �no fault’
divorce is a lie spawning huge injustice.
The media and the politicians are principally
responsible for the state of denial about the harm
caused to children and to the whole society.
They are the ones striving hardest to suppress the
truth and to further undermine marriage.
Behind this drive lies the irrational and ruthless
liberal ideology of “choice”, what I want, which
now dominates public life in Ireland and cares little about the suffering it causes to the weak.
And behind this ideology is the culture of despair,
rooted in the loss of the sense of God.
Justice demands that we vigorously oppose this ideology, exposing all that undermines marriage and
doing all we can to uphold society’s most basic institution.
But ultimately this requires a return to God, to giving him the central place in our lives.
�The greatest work on earth’
AN American nun has
told Catholic doctors
that they must speak out
against practices that
have made their way into
medicine, but actually
harm patients.
Sr. Mary Diana Dreger was
addressing the 600 participants at a conference of the
“Today as Catholic physicians, we find ourselves
speaking against, contradicting much that has made its
way into the medical profession and yet is destroying the
profession of medicine,” said
the nun.
She described three models
of medicine: the technological
imperative which says, if it
can be done, it will be done;
the business model where the
health carer is obligated to
respond to the interests of the
client or consumer, minimising care while maximising
profits; and the legal model
where the state licenses and
so the state decides.
“Catholic physicians must
reject these inaccurate models of medicine,” said Sr
Diana. “Neither law nor business nor science accurately
represents the essence of
medicine. The moral behaviour of Catholic physicians is
perfectly in keeping with the
practice of good medicine.”
Noting that the sick person
wants healing and compassion, she recalled that “medi-
— St John Paul II —
needs your help today.
Sr Mary Diana Dreger
cine is about doing good for
another person, a moral
endeavour. A physician wants
the good of another and the
patient trusts the physician
will do good.”
Volunteers Needed For
в—Џ General office work;
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в—Џ Fundraising;
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Could you could spare some time, however
little, to protect mothers and babies from
Call Carolyn 087-6729393 / 086-0293727 or
email [email protected]
Having completed her training as a doctor at Vanderbilt
University she now works in a
family health clinic where her
patients are mostly uninsured
She also holds an annual
weekend retreat to bring
women physicians together
for relaxation, discussion and
“Each of us is called to
change the world using the
gifts we have been given in
the vocation to which we are
called,” she says.
“Pope Francis reminds us
constantly that we are essentially called to be missionaries. Every Christian, wherever
we are is called to bring Christ
to the world.”
She went on to discuss various areas which are contrary
to good medicine: abortion;
birth control methods, including IUDs and the pill; artificial
reproduction; underage sexual
behaviours; and advanced
directives for the sick or elderly.
“The new evangelisation is
calling us to something more
than this,” she said. “Our
moral teachings do not contradict the truth of the human
The sick person who sees in
the doctor the God who loves
him or her is more likely to
turn back to God.
“We are to be in the world,
We provide free services to women with an
unexpected pregnancy and their families, and to
anyone suffering after an abortion.
the model of the divine physician,” she said. “We are called
to make Jesus known in our
personal encounters with our
Sr Diana spoke about her
own calling – how she had
wanted to marry and have a
large family. Having done a
degree in science she became
a high school teacher for six
Then she came across the
Nashville Dominican Sisters
whose community had “everything I wanted in religious life.”
She entered in 1989 and
took her final vows seven
years later. Shortly afterwards
her mother superior told her:
“I'm thinking of sending you to
medical school.”
Nuala Ui LaimhГ­n with her
son Seosaimh.
Saturday 22nd
& Sunday 23rd
St. John’s Rest & Care Centre,
KNOCK Shrine, Knock, Co. Mayo
Led by: Fr. Edgardo Arellano
(Fr. Bing)
Pro-life award
A FOXFORD, County Mayo,
mother of three was given the
first Pro-Life Person of the
Year Award at the ProLife
Campaign’s recent national
conference in Dublin.
Nuala UГ­ LaimhГ­n received
the award because of her
extraordinary commitment
and work on behalf of the
prolife cause.
“The work that Nuala does
is truly inspirational,” said
PLC chairman Joe McCarroll.
“She is always willing to
give of her time on a voluntary basis, and knows first
hand how important it is to
protect the most vulnerable
people in our society.”
Very reasonable
accommodation available
McWilliam Park Hotel,
Claremorris: 2 Nights B&B
and 1 Evening Meal
€109 pps.
Tel: 094 937 8000;
Park Hotel, Kiltimagh:
2 Nights B&B and 1
Evening Meal €109 pps.
Tel: 094 937 4922.
NORTH: Ann (048) 82246973 (Evenings only); Mary Rose (048)
82245631; Teresa 0044 2837548950; Patricia 0044 7855779950.
SOUTH: Chris (087) 1332079/ (021) 4667152; Carmel (086)
1011121; Etta (086) 8134060; Madeleine (087) 6245654;
Jim (087) 2446534; Dolores (086) 8329472.
EAST: Attracta (087) 9808309; Siobhan (087) 7821655;
Marian (086) 3564365.
WEST: Kathleen (087) 9850267; Mary (094) 9021170;
Bridie 083-3048845; Marian (086) 8068259.
UK: Paul (0044) 7989554040 or [email protected]
Alive! November 2014
Polish bishops oppose Europe’s attack on the family
POLAND’S bishops have spoken
out strongly against the latest
drive by a tiny handful of leftwing
ideologues to impose their
destructive agenda on hundreds
of millions of people in Europe.
Once again the Catholic Church is
almost alone in standing up for the
genuine rights of millions of people
against the liberal tendency towards
The Polish bishops sharply criticised a new European attack on marriage, the family and the protection of
children, drawn up by the Council of
Urging their country’s MPs to reject
the Council’s latest convention, they
said that the document tries to
“blame the foundational communi-
ties of marriage and family for all violence.”
They accused the Council of seeking to impose “a cultural revolution”
on its member states, under the pretence of ending violence against
women. Ireland has not signed the
document as it clearly conflicts with
the Irish Constitution.
The bishops also accused the
Council of going against human
nature by trying to “redefine sex as a
social phenomenon that can be
altered, rather than a biological reality.”
A number of Church-backed organisations and Poland’s Federation of
Pro-Life Movements have also called
on legislators to block the document.
The Council of Europe is made up of
47 member states, including the 28
members of the EU, all of whom
signed up to the European
Convention on Human Rights which is
supposed to “protect human rights,
democracy and the rule of law.”
This treaty is enforced by the highly
controversial European Cour t of
Human Rights, based in Strasbourg
(pictured left).
The latest convention which the
Council is pushing claims to combat
violence against women but does
nothing of the sort.
It is “not directed at countering violence, as its title suggests, but at
imposing an ideological cultural revolution,” said the Family Affairs
Council of the Polish bishops.
The document also treats marriage
and the family “as a threat” and compels states to bring up children in
line with “non-stereotyped sex
roles”, ignoring the views of parents
and the Church.
“When it comes to countering violence, this convention adds no new
solutions to existing Polish laws and
social practices,” said Bishop Jan
On the other hand, “it makes no
effort to combat media violence or
the pornography which objectifies
women. Nor does it tackle alcohol
and drug abuse, nor the extreme
form of violence against conceived
children, which is abortion.”
The bishop warned that the convention’s “ideological definitions” violate
Poland’s constitution and infringe the
country’s right “to make its own decision on matters of faith, ethics and
family life.”
But “this convention attempts to
create a new social order in which
family and tradition are marginalised
and the state gains instruments of
deep control over them,” he said.
SPICE up your marriage! New help to study the faith
Book Review
Handing On The Faith
good parenting course
is worth its weight in
gold. But a real key to
good parenting is to improve
your marriage relationship.
For children to feel secure
and safe, they need their parents to love each other as
husband and wife. The best
gift parents can give their
children is a good marriage.
In a recent homily Pope
Francis said: “The path is
not always smooth for married couples, nor is it free of
disagreements. If it were, it
would not be human.
“Rather it is a demanding
journey, at times difficult and
at times turbulent, but such
is life!”
He continued: “It is impossible to quantify the strength
and depth of humanity contained in a family, as shown
through the mutual help,
educational support, relationships developing as family members mature, the
sharing of joys and difficulties.
“Families are the first place
in which we are formed as
persons and, at the same
time, the �bricks’ for the
building up of society.”
A marriage naturally has
ups and downs. Sometimes
a husband and wife hit a
trough, and it can be difficult
for them to see that with
work the relationship can
Couples give up at the low
points and split. In seeking
new relationships they often
bring the same baggage with
them, setting themselves up
for another failed relationship.
But couples can keep their
relationship fresh with
S stands for spirituality.
Couples should ask, “How
can we grow together in our
spiritual life?” They might
attend Mass together, set
Jaclyn Ascough
Pope Francis: The path is
not always smooth for
married couples, nor is it
free of disagreements. If it
were, it would not be human.
aside a special time for
prayer or spend time reading
Scripture together.
P is for playfulness and
physical. A joy-filled, playful
day leads to better marital
intimacy. Some playful, fun
ideas are game nights, sharing hobbies, family days, and
date nights.
I is for intellectual, when
spouses share and discuss
their thoughts. They might
not agree on every topic, but
it is good to try and better
understand each other.
Christopher West and
Gregory Popcak are Catholic
authors with great insight
into marriage. They unpack
Theology of the Body in a
practical way for married couples.
C stands for connection
and communication. Improve
this with family meal times,
daily talk time, phone calls to
just say “I love you”.
E is for emotional. Men
need to realise that women
can be quite emotional.
Some women are more emotional than others, and at
certain times of the month
we can go right off the
Richter scale.
Men and women both need
to mind their mental health.
Look out for each other and
encourage one another to
seek help when needed.
A motto for your marriage
is, “Love and be loved”.
When you feel like it’s the
middle of winter and there is
no life left in your marriage,
with a little patience and tenderness spring is just around
the corner.
• Retrouvaille is a group
that helps couples whose
marriages are in big trouble.
Le Pen �is at the gates of power’
в– A recent opinion poll in France has suggested that
Marine Le Pen, leader of the Front National, would beat
all rivals to win the first round of a presidential election.
“In France, the extreme right of Marine Le Pen is at the
gates of power,” the country’s Prime Minister, Manual
Valls, told a gathering of fellow left-wing politicians in
Bologna, Italy.
He warned that a win for Le Pen would be “a terrible,
perhaps fatal, blow to Europe.”
Le Pen’s support has increased, in part, due to France’s
stagnating economy, high unemployment, immigration
issues, and a general feeling of discontent with the government.
today, including
many who go to
Mass, have little regard for
Church teaching or for even
the role of the Church as a
This is partly the fault of
Church leaders – many of
them no longer provide the
people with solid teaching.
If they don’t value their
teaching role is it any surprise that the laity conclude
that it can’t be important.
Our general culture is also
partly at fault. No one
wants to be told what to
think or what to believe, we
want to be free to think as
we choose. From this has
come the notion that religious belief is simply a matter of opinion or preference.
A Church that puts forward a definite set of teachings to be accepted by her
members is sure to be
resented, bitterly criticised
and possibly rejected.
As a result of these and
many other related factors,
the Catholic Church is
today by its mission to
teach, and shies away especially from truths which are
now considered “challenging”.
It is hardly surprising,
then, that the thinking of
Catholics differs little from
that of their secularist
neighbours, even on fundamental or controversial
Yet when we read the four
gospels we see that one of
the things that most amazed
the public about Jesus, from
the very beginning, was his
teaching. He provided “a
new teaching, and with
authority” (Mark 1,27).
Indeed, after his resurrection, Jesus instructed his
Church to make disciples of
all the nations, “teaching
them to observe all that I
Church was to teach all
nations, “in season and out
of season”.
But why was this teaching
so important? For one reason only – it revealed God’s
love for us and our call to
salvation in Jesus.
If we try to imagine hearing the Gospel for the first
time, and being overjoyed
by it, we may be able to
grasp why Christians were
eager to explore this revelation as fully as possible.
It was like being given a
great mansion as a gift and
wanting to explore every
nook and cranny in it. Or
better, it was like falling in
love and wanting to know
every detail of the life and
personality of the beloved.
Our love and our joy are
enriched more and more by
what we learn. And so it is
with the Catholic faith – the
teaching is there to enrich
and deepen our relationship
with God in Christ and in
his Church, to give us joy
and hope.
But the various teachings
are like pieces in a jigsaw,
we can only make sense of
them when we see how they
fit into the whole picture.
And that is what a catechism is for, to let us see the
whole picture and how the
The Irish bishops have just
brought out their first ever
Catholic catechism for
adults and it’s a gem. As is
now the pattern with catechisms, it falls into four
Part 1 explores the Creed,
the faith professed; Part 2 is
on the Sacraments, the faith
celebrated; Part 3 is on
Christian Morality, the faith
lived; and Part 4 is on
Prayer, the faith prayed.
The language is easy to
understand and technical
terms are explained. Each
chapter begins with a short,
informative life of a saint or
holy person, many of them
Then comes a section on
some elements of Church
teaching. But this takes into
account the various questions and confusions that
many Catholics experience
The chapter also contains
short sections on points of
doctrine, quotes from the
popes, saints, etc, summaries of important teachings and questions for further reflection or discussion.
Please God this catechism
will make a valuable contribution to the renewal of
faith and to the new evangelisation in Ireland. But this
can happen only if individuals and families gladly
accept responsibility for
their own formation in the
Alive! November 2014
RTE’s Prime Time must
lay off sick babies
t is extremely distressing
for a couple to learn that
their unborn baby is seriously ill or disabled and is
likely to die before or shortly
after birth.
Care for the parents should
aim to help them cope with
their grief and, above all, to
love their tiny, vulnerable
Talk of “fatal foetal abnormality” may have a place in
medical textbooks, but it
doesn’t help distressed parents to see their child as a
treasured gift from God.
RTE, and Prime Time in
particular, seem to be determined to exploit this distress
of parents to broaden the
legal grounds for abortion in
On Thursday, 9th October,
Prime Time returned to this
issue for the 6th time in the
past year or so. I focus here
on the opening 4-minute
filmed report.
Miriam O’Callaghan introduced this by stating that in a
small number of cases, “it is
discovered during the pregnancy that the baby has an
abnormality that is inconsistent with life.”
What did she mean? The
baby is alive and kicking so
the “abnormality”, the illness, is not “inconsistent with
She went on to say that
RTE’s Katie Hannon got
“exclusive access” to a confidential letter from the Master
of the Rotunda to the Dept of
This sounded suspicious.
Who gave her access? The
Master himself or someone in
the Health Department? Why
was it leaked? To push an
anti-life agenda?
The letter, said O’Callaghan,
concerned “a recent development relating to some of
these very traumatic cases of
fatal foetal abnormality.”
This depersonalised the sick
babies, they had become
“very traumatic cases of fatal
foetal abnormality.”
SPECIAL REPORT by Fr Brian McKevitt OP
RTE’s Katie Hannon: Who
leaked “confidential letter”
to her, and why?
fatal foetal abnormality” the
mother might “choose” to
carry the baby to term or
might “opt” for “a termination”.
RTE simply took the “prochoice” position for granted.
A neat piece of propaganda
or what?
Hannon then took up the
story of a couple who, three
years ago, “faced a heartbreaking decision.” A scan,
we were told, revealed that
their unborn child had “a
fatal foetal abnormality”.
Why not simply say she had
a serious heart condition, as
she had? Instead, the baby
girl was made to sound like a
monster as the slogan was
driven home.
The father, James Burke,
spoke of the decision they
faced: “Do we carry on with
the pregnancy until the
inevitable happens and possibly the child dies in the
womb or else she dies soon
Driven home
ext came Hannon’s
filmed report. Given
the profound issues
that would arise it was striking that the report completely
ignored the ethical dimension.
Or rather, the secularist
morality of “choice”, “what I
want”, was taken for granted.
Thus, for Hannon, when a
baby was diagnosed with “a
violence in
Maximilian Kolbe:
killed in Auschwitz in
1941 by an injection of
carbolic acid.
James Burke: campaigner
for increased abortion
interviewed by RTE.
after birth, which we just
couldn’t imagine putting ourselves through.”
So they went to England to
have the baby aborted. To
relieve their own distress the
couple decided to end their
little girl’s life. It was a shocking statement.
While distressed or frightened parents might make a
terribly wrong decision, and
regret it later, it was a shock to
hear a father justifying it
three years later.
Towards the end of the
report it was said in passing
that Burke is “now involved
with a campaign and a support group for couples in this
Viewers were not told, however, that he is, in fact, a leading campaigner for abortion
for so-called “medical reasons”. In not disclosing this
Prime Time seriously misled
its viewers.
n view of Burke’s agenda,
Hannon’s unquestioning,
sympathetic nodding was
seriously inadequate. Surely
she too must have felt
shocked, even horrified by
what he had said.
She then explained that the
leaked letter “sets out the 2step procedure required by
law in the UK once a pregnancy has passed the 22week point.”
Part A, she calmly stated,
“involves the administration
of an injection to stop the
heart of the foetus.” Another
shocking statement, but
Hannon didn’t seem to
Did she not realise she was
talking about the deliberate
killing of tiny disabled
This law is to ensure that
babies are dead before being
expelled from the womb, as
many survived “the procedure” and caused distress to
hospital staff.
Echoes here of the death of
St Maximilian Kolbe in
Auschwitz in August 1941.
The priest was left in a cell to
die of starvation. But he didn’t die quickly enough and
was injected with carbolic
acid to “stop his heart”.
Have we really come to this
in Ireland? Is this really what
RTE wants? What so many
politicians and media want?
Part B involves drugs to
expel the dead baby from its
mother’s womb. Burke
explained: “When you deliver in England you can’t bring
the corpse of the child back to
Ireland, so cremation has to
be done in England.”
his man, using his own
sad case to advance an
evil cause, seemed to
lack any awareness of the
horror of what he was saying.
Rather, for him the killing of a
sick unborn child was simply
“a taboo issue” in Ireland.
Nor did Hannon, it seems,
see the horror. Was RTE trying to deaden the public conscience to such macabre
behaviour, to normalise it?
Burke remarked that he and
his wife might have been better off “having the foeticide
injection in England” and
returning to Ireland for the
delivery. Mention of “foeticide
injection” was certainly blunt.
Receiving the ashes of their
baby girl was, no doubt,
painful, but to use that as part
of a campaign to legalise “the
procedure” in Ireland was
In a gesture towards balance Niamh UГ­ Bhriain got 14
seconds to point out that
“parents are not being given
all the options and they are
not being given the support
they need.”
“In particular we don’t see
things like perinatal hospice
care, a new form of care for
parents in this situation,
being made available in
Ireland,” she said.
If RTE really cared about
parents, why did it not follow
up on this? Rather, RTE used
parents’ distress to attack the
God-given right to life of tiny,
seriously ill babies.
ALTHOUGH Catholics are a tiny minority in
Bangladesh, nuns and priests there are coming
under violent attack because of their commitment to
the poor, one of the country’s bishops has said.
“They are being attacked
because they stand up for
the disadvantaged and
Sebastian Tudu of Dinajpur
told Aid to the Church in
Bishop Tudu was commenting after the latest incident in which a group of 50
or 60 armed men attacked
a Catholic mission, brutally
beating the nuns, terrifying
them and leaving them in
need of medical treatment.
They also broke down the
door of the presbytery and
robbed it. The attack lasted
about an hour and a half
and it was only when the
police arrived that the gang
The Bishop pointed out
that his diocese had already
been the scene of several
violent incidents against
Christians last year. The
attacks had been on villages where Catholics live.
“A seminary and the seminarians were also attacked,
and the students beaten. It
is always said that the reasons for the violence has to
do with disputes over land
and property,” he said.
But “the most recent
attack is clearly a targeted
response to Catholics’ commitment to the country's
poorest people.”
• A Sister tells police
about the violent attack on
the convent.
He pointed out that 45
priests and more than 100
nuns work in his diocese
and that they now live in
Bangladesh is a 90%
Muslim country, with Hindus
making up 9% of the population.
Church Art
2 for
(Stg ВЈ4.00)
including p&p
To order see page 16
Be part of, and help to promote, the
Ictus Movement
в—Џ Praying and fasting for the legal
protection of human life at all its stages
в—Џ Keeping society alert to respect for
human life as a serious moral issue
What Is Asked Of You:
в—Џ Prayer: Take part in Mass and Holy Communion
on the 1st Friday of each month (Ictus Friday);
в—Џ Fasting: Abstain from meat each 1st Friday. This
public witness helps to establish solidarity in the
prolife cause.
в—Џ Mission: Invite others to join the Ictus Movement
To receive a monthly reminder for the First Friday or a
reminder for the parish notices/newsletter please email us.
[email protected]
Mass is a sacrifice
he Scriptures clearly
teach that Jesus understood his own death as a
sacrifice offered to his Father.
He was the priest making
the offering, and he was the
sacrificial victim that was
offered to seal the new
covenant that God was offering his people.
This is recalled in the consecration of the wine every time
we celebrate Mass: “Take
this, all of you, and drink from
it, for this is the chalice of my
blood, the blood of the new
and eternal covenant, which
will be poured out for you and
for many for the forgiveness of
From the very beginning the
Catholic Church has taught
that this sacrifice of Calvary is
made present every time we
celebrate Mass.
The sacrifice is not repeated
nor is it simply remembered.
Rather, it is made present.
When we attend Mass we
stand, as it were, at the foot
of the Cross with Our Lady and
St John, united with Jesus.
This allows us to take part
in the one sacrifice of Christ.
Through, with and in Jesus we
offer up the sacrificial victim.
He is the priest at Mass and
we share in his priesthood,
we are a priestly people.
Again, through, with and in
Jesus we are the sacrifice
that is offered up to the
Father. We are on the altar
with Jesus, a sacrificial people.
The ordained priest at Mass
only acts “in persona Christi”,
in the person of Christ. In
other words, his role is to
make sacramentally visible
the presence of Jesus, our
high priest.
At the same time the general body of Catholics are in
Christ through baptism so
they share in his priesthood.
Through and with the
ordained priest they also offer
the sacrifice of Calvary.
Sacrifice is the key to understanding the Mass. A priest,
by definition, is someone who
offers sacrifice.
We often hear it said that
the Church of Ireland or other
Protestant groups have
women priests. It seems,
however, that they do not
have men priests, not to
speak of women priests.
The various Protestant communities are emphatic that
their holy communion service
is not a sacrifice.
Under Queen Elizabeth, for
example, the Anglican communion in 1571 drew up its
doctrinal statement called the
Thirty Nine Articles.
Article 31 flatly rejected the
Catholic teaching that the
Mass is a sacrifice, speaking
of “blasphemous fables, and
dangerous deceits.”
What Protestants mean by
�priest’, therefore, is unclear
but very different to what
Catholics mean.
Monthly Meditation
An open door
he Father and I will come to him and make our
home with him.’
Let your door be open to Jesus when he comes,
open your soul, thow open your inmost mind, so that it
may see the riches of simplicity, the treasures of peace, the
sweetness of grace.
Open your heart, meet the sun of eternal light that
enlightens every person. That true light indeed shines on
all; but if anyone has closed his windows, he will rob himself of the eternal light.
Christ too is shut out if you close the door of your mind.
Although he is able to enter, he does not wish to rush in
uninvited. He does not wish to force the reluctant.
Born of the Virgin, he came forth from the womb, casting
his rays over all things in the whole world, that he might
give light to all people.
All reeive him who long for the brightness of eternal
light which no night can interrupt.
The sun which we see every day is followed by the darkness of night. But the Sun of righteousness never sets, for
wickedness does not hide wisdom.
Blessed, therefore, is that person at whose door Christ
knocks. It is through the door of faith that Christ comes in.
You must keep awake then so that when the bridegroom
comes he may not depart because he has been shut out.
— St Ambrose of Milan
Alive! November 2014
Talking about sex and love
ure in Heart is a
Catholic youth movement with a very specific focus, fostering the
virtue of chastity.
Chastity is the virtue
which directs our sexual
desire in keeping with our
dignity as human beings
and as children of God.
The movement also has a
full-time volunteer mission
team which visits schools
and parishes to share its rich
vision of sexuality.
Each year a number of
young adults take a year out
from study or work to serve
on the team.
So far the Pure in Heart
team has spoken to over
100,000 second level students in Ireland on the topic
of love, relationships and
The team’s message is definitely counter-cultural, but
it goes down well with both
students and teachers. As a
result, speakers are invited
back to schools again and
Students learn that sex is
something good and wholesome, that it is a particular
kind of body language to
communicate an absolutely
unique kind of love.
But it must be “spoken” in
the right context, namely
marriage, the loving, committed relationship between
a man and woman.
This, of course, seems to be
Speaker’s Corner
by Anne Nagle
old-fashioned, out of step
with 21st century Ireland
and modern youth.
approach to sex education
argues that it’s more “effective” to teach young students about contraceptive
methods, how to have protected sex, and get them up
to speed on “the facts” and
Does this work? In 1999
the UK Government spent
ВЈ15 million on this type of
teenage pregnancies had
risen by 34% and the rate of
sexually transmitted diseases was up by 64%.
Pure in Heart, on the other
hand, puts the person and
his or her personal dignity
first, chastity is part of personal growth, and right
choices in this area lead to
So how does a young person make a right choice? By
having statistics and data at
hand? This may be helpful
but it’s far from enough.
What the person really
needs is a total vision of sexuality, coupled to a good
sense of judgment and a
Total vision
�What a young
person needs is a
total vision of
sexuality, coupled
to a good sense of
judgment and a
well-formed character.
True education goes deeper than an information session on the mechanics of
sex. It gives teenagers the
freedom to “be themselves”,
not swayed by the culture or
social pressures which land
them in trouble through bad
Pure in Heart does give
statistics, including facts
usually ignored by other
groups, but it appeals above
all to the students’ deeper
aspirations and values.
Who doesn’t want to meet
the right person, to be in a
loving, committed relationship? Who really wants the
other person to walk away
after a one-night stand?
Young people are looking
for authentic love, not
throwaway love or easy sex.
When two people have sex
they’re expressing the complete permanent giving of
themselves to another with
their bodies so let sex be glorious.
And here marriage makes
the difference because the
other person, husband or
wife, has already said a glorious �yes’ to you as a person. And sexual intimacy is
a celebration of that reciprocal, total self-giving of one
person to the other.
Pure in Heart has a wonderful vision to offer our
culture and our young people, and that explains why
their message is touching so
many hearts and lives.
When members have spoken on radio the number of
texts into the show was
overwhelmingly in their
favour. On the SeГЎn
O’Rourke Show on RTE’s
Radio One it was a ratio of
10 to 1 in their favour.
So the message of Pure in
Heart is reaching not only
young hearts, but also many
people who care enough
about the young to realise
that they deserve to hear the
truth about sex and marriage and love.
• Anne Nagle is a member
of Pure in Heart
L e t ’ s m e e t t he pr o ph e t s
n the Nicene Creed every
Sunday we say: “He has
spoken through the
prophets.” What is a
prophet? A person who
speaks on behalf of God.
He receives and passes on
God’s Word to others.
For Amos, one of the earliest prophets, the prophet
is one to whom God has
revealed his secrets:
“Surely the Lord God will
do nothing, but he reveals
his secrets to his servants
the prophets” (Amos 3:7).
God’s holiness and will are
revealed to his prophets.
The prophet “contemplates present and future
through the eyes of God
and is a man sent to
remind the nation of its
duty to God and to bring
them back to obedience
and love,” says the
Jerusalem Bible.
St. Gregor y the Great
says: “The name of the
prophet is sometimes
Fr Joseph
given in the sacred writings
to teachers who both
declare the present to be
fleeting and reveal what is
to come.”
The Letter of Barnabas
explains: “The Lord has
made the past and present
known to us through his
prophets, and he has given
us the ability to taste the
fruits of the future beforehand.
“Thus, when we see
prophecies fulfilled in their
appointed order, we ought
to grow more fully and
deeply in awe of him.”
Prophecy is concerned
with expressing God’s will
and plan, especially in the
death and resurrection of
The early Fathers of the
Church were ver y clear
that the prophets were
inspired by Christ himself.
St Ignatius of Antioch
(died 117ad) wrote: “The
lives of the divinely
inspired prophets were
instinct with Jesus Christ
… The prophets of old
were pupils of his in spirit,
and looked forward to him
as their teacher.”
St Thomas Aquinas
teaches that the prophets
can only be understood
fully in the light of the passion and the open heart of
In the Bible the prophets
come directly before the
Gospels because they are
fulfilled in Jesus. They prepare for the Gospels and
are the gateway to the
In the history of salvation
the prophets come after
the Law, summarised in
the Ten Commandments,
and the Covenant. The
Covenant expressed the
relationship between the
Lord and his people.
Their role was to remind
people of the Law and the
Covenant because the people continually strayed.
They would recall people to
the Law, explain it and
apply it to new times.
They would also call people back to the Covenant
and so to relationship with
the Lord who loved them
passionately, like a faithful
and selfless spouse.
Alive! November 2014
New theory to explain absence of global warming
SCIENTISTS have admitted that
there has been little global warming for nearly 20 years, and they
expect this to continue for the
next decade or more.
Climate change alarmists have put
forward more than a dozen theories
to explain the absence of warming,
which they had not foreseen.
The latest theory suggests that a
natural cycle of ocean currents has
drawn heat from shallow waters
down almost a mile into the depths
of the Atlantic and Southern Oceans.
In a study reported in Science journal, researchers suggest that over a
period of 30 years heat is stored near
the surface of the Atlantic Ocean,
leading to warmer temperatures.
Then follows a 30-year period in
which the heat is stored in the
depths of the ocean, causing cooler
surface temperatures.
Prof Ka-Kit Tung of Washington
have always felt that landscape is powerful and can even shape and mould us.
The regional styles of Irish traditional
music reflect the varying landscapes around
In this way, I feel the place I grew up in
and the fields I played in as a child had a
huge role in forming my early faith. We
were brought up in a spiritual haven in the
On our small lane lay an ancient monastic
site, the grave, holy well and church of an
early Irish saint, St. Riaghan, and the home
place of Cardinal O’Donnell of Armagh
who died in 1927.
As a child I could see so many traces of
God in the world around me - my mind was
often inspired into thinking of the Divine.
I grew up in a vibrant Catholic family with
three brothers and three sisters, all of us
very close in age.
Our father looked after us at home when
we were children and our mother taught at
the local secondary school.
Our grandmother stayed with us for long
periods throughout my childhood, lending
my parents a helping hand. She was the
spiritual head of our family and her faith
has had a lasting influence on me.
She never preached but lived her faith in
every moment. When she was not busy
serving others she could be found with her
rosary beads in her hands.
When the youngest member of our family
started primary school, my father returned
to teaching.
At this time I went to Mass every Sunday
with my family but I lacked any real sense
of relationship with Jesus or his blessed
mother, Mary.
The seeds of my faith were planted when,
aged seven, I read a children’s comic book
on the life of St. ThГ©rГЁse of Lisieux.
I knew my parents chose to name me after
this special saint, so I found myself continuously comparing my life and my heart to
that of little ThГ©rГЁse.
I began thinking, praying and talking to
her daily and felt very close to her in everything I did. When I was ten years old her
relics passed through my local hometown,
Glenties, County Donegal.
That day I witnessed such an incredible
University, one of the report’s
authors, admitted that the findings
were a surprise, as earlier studies
had suggested the Pacific Ocean was
“the culprit for hiding heat”.
Commenting on the findings
Richard Allan, professor of climate
science at Reading University, in
effect further undermined the theory
of man-made global warming.
“Although it is human nature to
seek a single cause for notable
devotion, love and faith in this little saint, a
love and faith that I had not seen at Mass or
anywhere else.
Throughout secondary school, I struggled
with my faith, praying less and less. I had
neither the knowledge nor experience of
Jesus’ love to sustain me in faith.
I saw myself as religious and yet didn’t
really know what it was that I believed. We
no longer prayed as a family, and attending
Mass became more of a habit.
During this period, I went on pilgrimage
to Lourdes twice, but still felt about Our
Lady as I would an historical character.
When I was sixteen, I got the opportunity
to go to Medugorje with a school group.
Despite having very strong views against
Medugorje, for some reason when I got a
personal invitation from our school chaplain, Fr. Paul Gallagher, I said “yes!”.
I owe him everything now for his witness
and invitation. It was in Medugorje that
everything changed for me.
Countless times on that pilgrimage I
ended up in floods of tears at the realisation
that I was loved, truly unconditionally
loved by my heavenly Mother.
It brought me a peace and a lasting joy that
I had not experienced before. It was a true
conversion of heart for me. In those
moments, the teachings of the Creed were
written in my heart.
ince then I continue to grow in faith in
various ways. I opted to study
Theology at college and continued
with a Masters in Pastoral Care.
From this, I came to love the Church and
all her teachings more deeply. In the last few
years, I have experienced the joy that comes
from sharing the Good News with others.
I worked as a Lay Chaplain in a Catholic
school in England, then as a Retreat facilitator in Donegal. At present I work in Cork
city with the Presentation Brothers on their
mission “to form Christ in the Young”.
So many priests, friends and family members have influenced and inspired my faith
journey along the way but none as much as
St. Thérése, and her “Little Way” shown in
the lives of both my grandmothers.
As I get older and grow in knowledge, I
pray that I will always value St. Thérése’s
“little way of spiritual childhood”.
I know that my journey in faith will meet
many more obstacles, twists and ups and
downs, but I am constantly discovering
God’s glory in new places along the way.
This month I will be saying “I do” to a new
calling, marriage! I
will soon be accompanying another soul
on the path to heaven. The journey in
faith continues.
Treise O’Callaghan, 25,
is Co-ordinator of Youth
Ministry with the
Presentation Brothers
in Cork.
events,” he said, “in reality the complexity of the climate system means
that there is not one simple explanation for a decade of unusual climatic
• Latest research shows that ice
covering the sea around the
Antarctic is now at its highest level
since records began. But alarmists
have claimed this is due to global
warming, and put forward several
theories in a bid to explain it.
One against all
n 28 June 1914
Ferdinand of Austria,
heir to the Austro-Hungarian
imperial throne, and his wife
Sophie were shot dead in
A month later the war which
had been building up for years
broke out across Europe.
In the coming years the war
would lead to the death of
more than 9 million soldiers
and 7 million civilians. But
when it began it was welcomed by political leaders
and millions of people across
the continent.
The one major world figure
who spoke out against war
from the very beginning was
the newly elected Pope
Benedict XV, lamenting “the
suicide of civilised Europe.”
German armies already
marching on Paris and the
Battle of the Marne only days
away, Benedict immediately
began his work for peace.
Within days he condemned
“the appalling spectacle of
this war that has filled the
heart with horror and bitterness.”
Weeks later he protested
that the greatest and wealthiest nations were “well-provided with the most awful
weapons modern military science has devised, and they
strive to destroy one another
with refinements of horror.”
He continued: “There is no
limit to the ruin and slaughter;
day by day the ear th is
drenched with newly-shed
blood, and is covered with the
bodies of the wounded and of
the slain.
“Who would imagine, as we
see them filled with hatred of
one another, that they are all
members of the same human
society? Who would recognise
them as brothers whose
Father is in Heaven?”
Throughout the conflict
Benedict offered practical
measures to limit the horror,
calling for at least a temporary ceasefire at Christmas
1914, the feast of the
Saviour’s birth.
His efforts to provide relief
for the civilian victims of the
war, especially the children,
A Window
on History
• Benedict XV, pope during World War 1.
Vatican, but it saved millions
of lives.
In August 1917 the Pope
offered a remarkable peace
proposal that even then would
have saved countless lives.
Benedict called for a peace
without winners or losers.
States would cease fighting
and restore all the territories
they had conquered, leaving
disputed claims to arbitration.
More radically, a peace-making court would be established to settle disputes,
armaments would be reduced
and the money saved would
be spent on social reconstuction.
The new global order would
recognise the freedom of the
seas, and acknowledge the
rights of smaller nations,
such as Ireland.
Benedict also called for an
end to military conscription,
which in the Europe of the
time would have amounted to
a social revolution. But here
was a genuinely realistic
vision for peace.
Austria-Hungary, under its
new Emperor Karl, briefly
leaned towards accepting the
The warring powers, however, were not ready for peace.
Each side believed it could
glimpse a vision of final victory, that it could last long
enough to see its rivals collapse.
The English poet Rudyard
Kipling was outraged by the
denounced “the Pope, the
swithering Neutrals, the
Kaiser and his Gott, their
roles, their goals, their naked
Like most other people at
the time, he was also strongly
opposed to Benedict’s policy
of Vatican neutrality, then a
highly controversial position,
which was aimed at trying to
bring about peace.
Catholics in Germany and
Austria mistrusted the Pope
due to his failure to support,
as they saw it, their noble
defence of Europe from
Russia’s on-rushing Tsarist
On the other side, with
Belgium and one third of
France under a brutal German
occupation, Catholics there
believed the Pope had abandoned their struggle.
There was the further complication that years of political
and military propaganda on
both sides had led each
nation to believe that its enemies were demons with whom
it was impossible to compromise.
The Pope’s proposal failed,
and the slaughter continued,
but elements from the proposal were taken up later
These principles formed a
large part of US President
Woodrow Wilson’s Fourteen
Points in 1918, and it was on
these points that the defeated Germans finally accepted
the Armistice.
The points have now
become widely accepted in
global circles today but they
came from Benedict XV.
Despite this, the Vatican
was excluded from the peace
negotiations at Versailles, due
in part to secularists and anticlerical Italian politicians.
But the Pope was one of the
first to spot the flaws of the
peace treaty, and described
the Versailles Treaty as
Neither it nor the League of
Nations, from which the Holy
See had also been excluded,
was based on Christian principles. Instead, they laid the
foundations for the bitterness
that ultimately led to World
War 2.
Alive! November 2014
ALGARVE, Albuferia, Portugal.
Luxury 1 or 2 bed aparts for rent.
Sky TV, shared pool, long/short
term. Special Winter rates. Tel:
087 2371716, 087 2856636.
MEDJUGORJE. 3 bedroom
apart to rent. All mod cons, air
conditioning lift wheelchair
access sleeps 9, 5 mins from
church. Tel: 086 1055388.
KNOCK, near shrine, beautiful 2
bedroom bungalow, furnished.
€63,000. Tel: 094 9362216.
HOUSE for rent in Castleisland,
Co. Kerry. Tel: 086 1217497.
WANTED. Kind property owner
willing to rent a 3-bed house in
Dublin 5/13 area, to a deserving
family. Tel: 087 6334644.
DIVINE Mercy Conference, 21st
& 22nd February 2015. RDS,
Dublin 4. “Forgive us our trespasses…” Speakers: Sr Briege
McKenna OSC, Fr Kevin Scallon
CM, Fr Michael Ross SDB.
com; [email protected] All very welcome
Please pray for this inspirational
WATERFORD Volunteers wanted
to help distribute Alive! papers,
please. Tel: Julie 086 0596051.
ALOE vera. Forever living products. Distributor: Phil Colgan 016281436; 086 2437653.
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STOP eviction. 70 year old pensioner, Patrick Hogan, facing
eviction by block layer/contractor,
please help in any way you can.
Email: [email protected] 087
1931006 (answers 24 hours),
087 2967560.
WANTED, copy of book by Fr.
Gabriel Harty O.P., entitled Love
Before My Face. Tel: 087
ALL property wanted. All areas,
houses, sites. Everything considCash
PLEASE Alive! readers, include
me in your prayers to sort out my
financial problems. Box 7201
CAMINO Drug rehabilitation,
run by Fr. Denis Laverty
since 1997, is in urgent
need of funds. Please send what
you can. Camino Project,
Meadowbrook, Cloncurry Cross,
Enfield, Co. Meath. Tel: 046
9549241. Email: caminonetwork Charity no: CHY
ON YOUTUBE. Search for “The
Irish Times Way” for a short video
exposing anti-life bias in the
DEAR Sacred Heart of Jesus in
the past I have asked for many
favours. This time I ask you this
very special one (mention
favour). Take it, dear Heart of
Jesus, and place this request in
Classifieds: €1 per word; Box No. €3.00 extra
your broken Heart where your
father can see it. Then in his merciful eyes, it will become your
favour not mine. Amen. Say this
prayer for three days. Pub
promised and favour will be
granted. Never known to fail. LJ,
MALE early 40s, single, solvent,
RC, 5’11”, handsome build,
good-looking, blue eyes, smart,
honest, with sense of personal
value. Very outgoing, loves travel, adventure, music, meals out.
SD, NS, VGSOH. Seeks single
lady up to 37, nurse, medical, or
other profession for friendship,
possible relationship. Absolute
confidentiality assured. Midlands.
Box 7202.
PARTNER Select for people of
all ages & professions who are
seeking friends for socialising,
friendships, relationship or marriage. Apply to Box 7203. For further information contact 089
SOUTH Leinster woman, 50,
spiritual, broad minded, tolerant,
practising Catholic, professional,
NSND, loves outdoors, animals,
travel, theatre & simple things.
Wltm professional male early
50s, for friendship and possible
assured. 086 4460748.
ATTRACTIVE refined single professional lady, 60, NS, wltm sincere, kind, tall, active man, to
Ignore humility & keep them bitter
Dear Nettles,
value of bitterness in
a human heart. Study closely how to nurture it,
because with proper care it
can sour a whole life.
Bitterness, you must
remember, is rooted in pride
and is a delightfully ruinous
way that many humans
turn to when dealing with
hurt in their lives.
The hurt can be due to a
major event, like being
sacked or parents divorcing,
or it may be relatively
minor, like nasty gossip or
failure in an exam.
But the key thing is how
the person reacts. As you
learnt in your anthropology
class, there are right and
wrong ways of dealing with
hurt pride or hurt emotions.
And our task is to guide our
client into one of the wrong
First step it to point out to
him (or her) that how he
was treated was unfair,
unjust, cruel or damaging
in some way. All the better if
it really was.
Next you need to encourage him to move on from
this to thinking: “I don’t
deserve this, I shouldn’t be
treated this way, I’m being
victimised” or even, “who
Letters from a Master
to a Trainee Tempter
does this guy think he is,
treating me like that?”
Now he’s beginning to
focus on his own importance and to feel that he is a
victim. At this point you
gently move him towards a
sense of grievance and disillusion and then on to a cynical and bitter attitude to life.
Two dangers
here are, however, two
dangers you must
watch out for. Firstly,
you don’t want him thinking, “what the heck, I can
take this.” Or deciding,
“there are people with bigger troubles in the world.”
If he heads in this direction, every alarm bell in
your head should go off – he
is heading towards humility
and that is an utter disaster.
Humility is the foundation, the only foundation,
for all emotional healing
and for peace of soul.
You need to get in immediately with something about
the importance of him hav-
ing self-esteem or with
something that will rekindle his anger and indignation.
Secondly, you do not want
him thinking, “I must forgive
Forgiveness is one of the
biggest weeds that grows
out of humility.
Worse still, rooted in
humility it is the most powerful key to emotional healing. That, I suspect, is why
some counsellors and victim groups may guide their
customers away from it –
healing is bad for their business.
If you think I’m exaggerating just look at the
Christian faith, it’s all about
forgiveness. Jesus himself
seemed to be always banging on about it, think of the
Our Father, for example, or
many of his parables.
Even the night before he
died he told his disciples
“this is my blood… it will be
poured out so that sins may
be forgiven.”
But it really cracked me up
when he rooted forgiveness
in Him above. For crying
out loud, what can any of us
down here do with a humble
God, always eager to forgive? It does my head in.
Yours cynically,
share interests, walking, concerts, theatre, dancing, city &
country breaks, travel, most
sports. Box 7204.
SINGLE male, 45, Catholic,
handsome, likes reading, cycling,
cinema, travel, wltm female any
nationality. Tel: 086 3142474.
LEINSTER widower, 60s, 5’10”.
Interests: dancing, cards & walking, wltm lady for friendship and
possible relationship. Box 7205.
JOIN the matchmaking and
friendship club. Text 085
1583004 and send details to Box
DUBLIN single male, 73, refined,
good appearance, seeks attractive lady for friendship/relationship. Tel: 089 9412950.
MARIAN Pilgrimages 2015
brochure out soon. Please contact us on 01 8788159 or log on
to to request one
MEDJUGORJE from Cork and
Dublin, 27th May 2015. €529 if
paid by 10th December 2014.
GARABANDAL only €395. All
incl. 4-day packages. Fly (midday) ex Dublin to Spain with Sp.
Dir. & guide to full board hotel
accom. in Garabandal. Departs
18 Apr, & 9 May. Early booking
with €195 deposit is essential to
secure places at €395pps price.
Contact group leader Benny
Woods tel 086 8976569. Email:
[email protected]
€395 pps includes return flights
& full board hotel accom 4 days
in Spain. Departs twice monthly.
For free info package, contact
[email protected] Tel:
086 8976569.
MEDJUGORJE dentist, Dr.
Davor Planinic. White fillings,
implants. High quality work &
excellent rates. In accord with
European standards. 00387
36651889; 00387 63447840.
nights, €519 if paid by 10 Dec.
Darko House, near church. Sp.
Dir. Fr. Hugh Lee. Contact
4337647 or 086 3850861.
MEDJUGORJE, special offers
for 2015. €150 off if paid by 10
Dec. €100 off if paid by 2 Feb. 10
June and 9 Sept, both accompanied by Joe Dalton and Phyllis
Mulligan. Tel: 042 9336705; mob.
087 2028492.
Remember Your
Loved One with a
Special Keepsake
• Memorial Cards
• Bookmarks
• Acknowledgement Cards
• Key Rings
• Wallet Cards
Call 053-92 35295
for a catalogue
[email protected]
HOLYFACE. Reparation books,
medals, & various scapulars.
Write to: Michael Gormley, 68
Melvin Rd, Terenure, Dublin 6W.
ON YOUTUBE. Search for “We
can know the truth”, for a homily
preached by Fr Brian McKevitt
O.P. in Medjugorje.
MEDJUGORJE reunion, 15th
Nov. 2014, Mass at 4.30pm in
Shopping Centre. Contact Liam
Cotter on 087 6381157.
MEDJUGORJE Mass, Monday 1
Dec St Mary’s Church, Lucan.
Celebrant Fr Aidan Kieran.
Rosary and confessions 7.10pm;
Mass 7.30pm. Light refreshments after.
DEAR Sacred Heart of Jesus,
thank you for favours received & to
be received. Pub promised. POS.
SACRED Heart thanks for
favours. P.
GRATEFUL thanks to St. Jude for
many favours granted. JB..
LANGUAGE Programme Coordinator required now to run
English Language Programmes
South Dublin, year round. Must
have good communication skills,
pleasant open manner, interest in
working with young students.
Ability to deal with schools, host
Essential: native English speaker, fluent in Spanish, good computer skills, full EU driving
licence. Salary negotiable. CV
and introductory letter to
[email protected]
GRAPHIC Designer wanted for
print and digital media. CVs to
[email protected]
Towerbells, Altarware, Furnishings, Statues of wood, marble,
plaster, bronze, etc. Repair,
repaint. Altar cleaning. Specialist
in statues. Nationwide. Refs.
091 556735 mob. 087 2203898.
ALL unwanted home waste
removed. Cookers, fridges, beds,
suites, wardrobes, carpets, etc,
removed and disposed of in proper manner. No job too small or big.
Contact Tommy 087 6406015.
OLD photos, torn, cracked,
stained, etc. Repaired and
enlarged as new. B/W or colour.
Tel: 01 6265243, 087 2915672.
NEWSPAPER & magazine
design and editorial service.
Enquiries to: [email protected]
TYPEWRITERS repairs, sales,
ribbons, most makes, Tel: 01
SHEEP equipment: lamb scales,
creep feed gates, dipping tanks,
immobiliser units, etc. Everything
supplied for handling sheep
nationwide. B.T.G. Esmonde
Machinery 0402 37182.
GARDENER avail. Experienced.
Mature. Own tools. Southside.
Tel: Jerry 01 4933348.
BULIDER avail. All building &
maintenance work. Walls, plastering, painting, patios, repaired.
Paths & drives concreted.
Reasonable rates. Tel: Michael
01 4555252, 086 2479309.
LOCAL carpet/suite cleaning,
prices won’t be beaten. Room
€59, HSL €59, all suites including leather & upholstery €89,
rugs €25. Call Denis 087
PAINTING & decorating. All
aspects, reasonable rates. Est.
free. Tel: Chris Frances 085
FREE with every €40 donation to the
life-saving work next door to Marie Stopes
abortion agents in Dublin.
Send cheque made out to:
Women’s Counselling Network to:
Centre for the Divine Will,
9 Berkeley St, Dublin 7.
● Divine Will Introduction: Wynn’s
Hotel, Dublin, 2-5pm, Sat 15th November,
with Hugh Owen, author of the life of
Luisa. Now booking: 087-7777081.
Alive! November 2014
Prize Crossword...No.185
Lauren Franklip, The Grange,
Corelishy, Drankeen, Co.
Limerick. Age 7.
1. Heaven; 2. John Paul II; 3. Argentina; 4. Moses;
5. Nazareth; 6. Sunday; 7. Elizabeth; 8. Yes; 9.
Gabriel; 10. Advent; 11. God; 12. Judas.
Lives of the Saints
St. Oliver Plunkett
would have to dress in the traditional Scottish way, kilt and all.
The project failed, however, for
financial reasons. With a touch of
humour Oliver told Rome: “the
spirit is willing but the cash is
The most disturbing and scandalous affair in these years was
the revival of an old ecclesiastical
problem: the question of precedence between the archbishops of
Armagh and Dublin.
Both Sees were designated as
primacies, Dublin as Primate of
Ireland, Armagh as Primate of All
Mary Egan, Bancroft Park,
Tallaght, Dublin 24.
Oct. X-word Winner:
Solution to Oct. Crossword:
Across: 1. Marquee 5. Batch 8.
Attic 9. Disobey 10. Satires 11.
Flora 12. Ensure 14. Slogan 17.
Rummage 23. Lilac 24. Lisle
25. Towards.
Down: 1. Means 2. Rotates 3.
Ulcer 4. Eldest 5. Bashful 6.
Taboo 7. Hay Barn 12. Enthral
13. Red Tape 15. Gambler 16.
Accent 18. Pumas 20. Allow 21.
Ireland. This problem came to a
boil on a few occasions and was
eventually patched up in late
Oliver and his opposite number in
Dublin, Archbishop Peter Talbot,
however, retained a level of friendship throughout the dispute. At
one point when the Viceroy, battling with Talbot on other issues,
was about to exile the Archbishop
of Dublin, Oliver pleaded successfully for him.
Reporting the matter, he wrote in
1771: “The Viceroy, who in any
event has little love for Dr. Talbot
and his family, had for these and
other reasons made up his mind to
banish him from the kingdom.
“I did everything in my power to
dissuade the Viceroy and humbly
begged him not to take this course
of action. At the same time I
Last Month’s Colouring Picture Winner was:
he years of 1771 and 1772
were times of relative calm
before the terrible storm
which would break over Catholic
Ireland in 1773.
Oliver Plunkett, with energy and
zeal, pursued his mission of restoring and building up the faith of his
flock. This even extended into the
Catholics Rome had entrusted to
his care.
In 1771 he had planned to cross
over to the Isles, noting that he
If you get all 12 right you are a star!
в—Џ Part 8: Before the storm
Test Your Knowledge
Souls leaving Purgatory go to:
2. This Pope was recently made a
saint: __________
3. Country where Pope Francis was
born: __________
4. God gave him the 10
Commandments: __________
5. Jesus grew up in this town:
6. Most important day of the week:
7. Our Lady’s cousin: __________
8. Does Easter always fall on the
same day? _______
9. Angel who spoke to Our Lady:
10. The 4 weeks before
Christmas are: __________
11. A vocation is a calling from:
12. He betrayed Jesus: __________
Hiya, Kids,
If you are going to visit your granny
your Mam or Dad will tell you to
wash your hands and face first. They
want you to be nice and clean. Being
clean is a way of showing love for other
Now if you were going to meet God you
would want to be as clean as a new pin.
So would I. Above all, I would want to be
clean from all stain of sin.
You could say that Purgatory is like a big
wash room where we go after we die to be
made clean so that we can then meet
This month, November, we pray in a
special way for the souls in Purgatory so
that they will soon be ready to enter heaven. Then we will have special friends in
SlГЎn go fГіill,
Simplex Clues: €25 for the first correct
entry out of the bag. Entries before 16th
November. One entry per family. Winner
and answers next month.
1. A learner among cattle becomes a
messenger (6)
4. Reverberates when �e chose
wrongly (6)
8. This container sounds like a golfing
assistant (5)
9. Press ahead for the doctor? (7)
10. Cure Len somehow in
Switzerland (7)
11. Begin reckless spree (5)
12. Noisy person seen in empty
crumbling Italian cathedral in Irish
county (4-5)
17. How a winner may eat? (5)
19. Do a turn around this
building... (7)
21. ...and attack UN Rover (7)
22. Eager about accord (5)
23. The most up to date city
exam? (6)
24. Aircraft found on jagged ridge
around Loop Head (6)
1. Damn! The French interrupt
and harass (6)
2. Extremist causes Aldi car
crash (7)
3. Hen’s row? 5)
5. Vehicle I bought mainly for
large deer (7)
6. Canoe broke up at sea (5)
7. Entertainer who will leave you
in stitches? (6)
9. Decreasing household
item? (5,4)
13. Match officials emerge when
top minister stumbles in
America (7)
14. Number found under broken
Hard Disk at either end (7)
15. Place for studying fish? (6)
16. Run into your job? (6)
18. A government body which is
proficient? (5)
20. Follow along a path (5)
S’’ C
Solution to Alive!, St Mary’s Priory, Tallaght, Dublin 24.
assured him that whatever differences might be between the
Archbishop of Dublin and myself
over the question of jurisdiction,
we were still friends.
“His Excellency was appeased
and said he was edified by my
inter vention on behalf of Dr.
All these issues were, however,
to fade into insignificance with the
resurgence of a new virulent antiCatholic sentiment across the Irish
Sea, with the revelation that
James, Duke of York, the brother of
the King, was a secret Catholic.
Charles had no children, legitimate at any rate, who could succeed to the throne. This meant
that the heir apparent was none
other than the same Duke.
With this revelation the anti-
Catholic element in the English
Parliament turned on the Court
and the weak-minded Charles II
had to force his brother’s resignation as Lord High Admiral.
He also allowed stricter enforcement of anti-Catholic laws dating
back to Tudor times. This was in
In 1772 the friendly Viceroy in
Ireland, Berkley, whose wife was a
Catholic, had been recalled and
replaced by the Earl of Essex.
Essex was not likely to stand up
for justice in the face of aggression. For Oliver and the Irish
Catholics he was the wrong man in
the wrong place.
When the London Parliament
turned its attention to the Catholic
“problem” in Ireland the years of
relative peace and tranquillity
came to an end.
Alive! November 2014
Major study confirms Irish law would cut child’s
dangers of cannabis use ties with one parent
UK TEENAGERS and young adults are now as likely
to take cannabis as they are to smoke cigarettes, say
But a major, long-term
study of use of the drug has
found that it is highly addictive, causes mental health
problems and opens the door
to hard drugs.
The UK research, published
in the journal Addiction, has
demolished any argument
that using cannabis is harmless. The 20-year study found
• 1 in 6 teenagers and 1 in 10
adults who regularly smoke
cannabis end up dependent
on it; and are more likely to
go on to hard drugs;
• the drug doubles the risk
of a user developing psychotic disorders such as schizophrenia;
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Cine films, photos and slides
transferred to DVD with music &
titles added.
Also Camcorder and video tapes
edited and transferred to DVD.
Tel: 01 2807838
or 087-9132265
Email: [email protected]
• users do worse at school,
and it may impair the intellectual
• driving after smoking
cannabis doubles the risk of a
car crash;
• smoking it while pregnant
puts the unborn baby at
greater risk of harm.
Professor Wayne Hall, who
led the research, rejected the
view that cannabis is harmless.
“If cannabis is not addictive
then neither is heroin or alcohol,” he said. “It is often harder to get people who are
dependent on cannabis
through withdrawal than for
He also pointed out that
users who try to stop taking
cannabis often suffer anxiety,
insomnia, appetite disturbance and depression. Even
after treatment, less than half
can stay off the drug for six
Professor Hall of King’s
College London is a drugs
JUSTICE Minister Frances Fitzgerald
has been accused of trying to introduce a law that is deeply anti-child
and needs major changes to make it
advisor to the World Health
Commenting on the findings, a spokesman for the UK
charity Rethink Mental Illness,
said: “Too often cannabis is
wrongly seen as a safe drug,
but as this review shows, there
is a clear link with psychosis
and schizophrenia, especially
for teenagers.
“The common view that
smoking cannabis is nothing
to get worked up about needs
to be challenged more effectively. Smoking it is essentially
playing a very real game of
Russian roulette with your
mental health.”
While various celebrities and
politicians have called for the
drug to be legalised Professor
Hall pointed out that legalising it elsewhere had not prevented dependency.
“The number of cannabis
users seeking help to quit or
control their cannabis use has
increased during the past two
decades in the US, Europe
and Australia,” he wrote.
“The same increase has
occurred in the Netherlands,
where cannabis use was
decriminalised more than 40
years ago.”
Opponents say the Bill in effect turns children into commodities, and undermines
the right of a child to both a mother and
father whenever possible.
A new group, Mothers and Fathers
Matter, has been set up to fight for justice
for children and to oppose the cynically
named Children and Family Relationships
It says the Bill would authorise adults to
use eggs or sperm from fertility clinics to
have children even if the “commissioning”
adult, or adults cannot provide the resulting child with both a mother and a father.
It also deliberately breaks the natural tie
to at least one parent.
Taking part in a march in Paris for
children’s right to a father and a mother.
hood “is and will be banned in France”
because it is “an intolerable commercialisation of human beings and commodification
of women’s bodies”.
Manuel Valls made the promise as hundreds of thousands of people marched in
Paris and Bordeaux calling on the French
government to keep surrogacy illegal.
They also want a ban on “assisted human
reproduction” where it would leave children without a father or a mother, and an
end to “anti-family” cuts to child benefit
The “Manif Pour Tous” (Protest for All)
movement was founded to oppose the
legalisation of same-sex marriage in
France, but it has expanded its agenda to
“Most other countries in Europe protect
the natural tie and don’t allow it to be broken in this way,” said Professor Ray
Kinsella, chairman of the new group.
“The Government and opposition parties
intend bringing Ireland down a much
more permissive path without proper public debate.”
More information about the group can be
found on the Iona Institute website.
Meanwhile France’s leftwing Prime
Minister has said that surrogate mother-
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No More Tears in My Eyes
In 1946, Kathleen
Kilbane, 11, arrived in
the sanatorium in
Ballinrobe. Because of
people’s dread of TB,
Kathleen, an orphan,
was to have few
But Br. Anselm
Conway took her
under his wing. Here
is his deeply moving
and best-selling
account of Kathleen’s last year of life.
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the breadth
of vision and
the meaning
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the Catholic
An ideal gift
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Our Lady
of Fatima,
pray for
the work
of Alive!
Published by Alive Group, St. Mary’s Priory, Tallaght, Dublin 24. Tel: 01-4048187 • E-mail: [email protected] • Editor: Fr Brian McKevitt OP • Design/Sub-editing: Tom English • Printed by Datascope, Enniscorthy