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  • Hot (but speculative) rumor: Pope to meet Russian Patriarch next month? | Catholic Culture
    face to face meeting between a Roman Pontiff and a Russian Orthodox Patriarch Nor has there been any recent public discussion of plans for such a summit meeting But in this case Magister reasons that silence could itself be suggestive an indication that both sides are interested in real action rather than public posturing During the pontificate of St John Paul II there were frequent public discussion about a visit to Moscow But each time a practical proposal emerged the Moscow patriarchate would announce that the meeting could not take place until the Vatican acceded to certain demands from the Russian Orthodox side Under Pope Francis there have been no rumors about a trip to Russia and so there have been no Russian statements to shoot down the rumors Pope Francis has merely that he would like to meet with Patriarch Kirill In his words I told Kirill I ll go wherever you want you call me and I ll come That statement could be interpreted to indicate the Pope s interest in arranging a meeting that would take place on neutral territory not expecting the Russian Orthodox leader to make a pilgrimage to Rome nor forcing the Roman Pontiff to travel to Moscow If that s the case it s interesting that in February both will be abroad Pope Francis visiting Mexico Patriarch Kirill in Cuba There is again no overt evidence to show that a summit meeting is being planned But as Magister points out Francis is the Pope of surprises and Kirill has been shaking up the Moscow patriarchate evidently determined to put his own stamp on the leadership of the world s largest Orthodox body Lesser prelates in both Rome and Moscow could no doubt think of many reasons why a meeting now would be imprudent

    Original URL path: http://www.catholicculture.org/commentary/otn.cfm?id=1133 (2016-02-11)
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  • Church Fathers: Origen's Life and Legacy | Catholic Culture
    after he also made trips to Arabia to teach the Roman governor there and to Antioch at the request of the current Emperor s mother who wished to hear him speak Persecution and looting by the Emperor Caracalla led Origen to leave Alexandria in 215 He went to Palestine and preached at the request of several of the bishops there of Caesarea and Jerusalem among others His own bishop Demetrius was displeased with a layman preaching in the presence of bishops and summoned him back to Alexandria Fifteen years later in 230 Origen returned to Caesarea on his way to Greece While he was there Alexander bishop of Jerusalem and Theoctistus bishop of Caesarea ordained him to the priesthood so there could be no objection to his preaching This made Demetrius even angrier Eusebius speculates he was jealous of Origen s influence He deposed Origen from his headship of the school and from the priesthood and excommunicated him from the church of Alexandria In light of later controversies it is perhaps worth noting that St Jerome says that this excommunication was not because of Origen s doctrine Origen went to Caesarea and with the help of Theoctistus founded a new school where he taught from 231 254 From the farewell address of St Gregory Thaumaturgus particularly chapters 13 15 we learn that the instruction at Caesarea was modeled closely after that of the school of Alexandria and that he made his students read every one of the writings of the ancients whether philosophers or poets excepting and rejecting nothing for we had not the necessary discrimination save only those of the atheists who deny the existence of God or Providence Aside from these he introduced his students to all the schools of philosophy so that they would not get stuck before they had the capacity to judge in any one set of opinions or become too attached to any one teacher other than God and the prophets Gregory also notes that in contrast to many philosophers of the day Origen s ethical teaching was primarily practical in nature and that he taught even more by the example of his life than by words Around 244 Origen travelled again to Arabia where he convinced Bishop Beryllus of Bostra to abandon monarchianism an anti Trinitarian heresy He was imprisoned and tortured during the Decian persecution of 251 and died at Tyre shortly after being released at the age of sixty nine c 254 what might be called a martyr s death Philosopher or Christian In comparison to his predecessor Clement Origen at first seems less concerned with philosophy In a letter to his student Gregory he says that philosophy is merely a precursor to the study of Scripture Clement cites pagan poets and philosophers constantly while Origen rarely does so But as seldom as Origen cites the pagan philosophers their influence upon him is significant There has been an ongoing debate since the Origenist controversies over whether he was more of a

    Original URL path: http://www.catholicculture.org/commentary/articles.cfm?id=665 (2016-02-11)
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  • Darkness: The practical result of our contemporary mythology | Catholic Culture
    specific ways perhaps most obviously in academia which typically represents the pin like apex of our culture s closed system of thought As a first case in point I recently alluded to what Christopher Alexander suffered when he tried to apply something like authentic human values to architecture On Gardening and Architecture and the awareness of God This is a good working example of my larger point Viewed more broadly the prevailing obtuseness was captured rather neatly five years ago when Jay Schalin of the John William Pope Center for Higher Education Policy wrote a column enumerating the ten most obvious Myths of the Ivory Tower The blindness behind the myths was very effectively illustrated by an academician s response entitled The Myths of an Ivory Tower Watcher and the telling response by Schalin in Back to the Dark Ages One hint Many faculties whose members uniformly hold the regnant secular liberal positions on everything actually regard themselves as moderate Or to take a theological example we need only recall the Modernist reinterpretation of the New Testament which afflicted us not so many years ago Modernists have decided in advance that what we call truth is merely a cultural construct and that true enlightenment comes from recognizing this inescapable fact Thus for example they dismiss eye witness testimony to the Resurrection in the Gospel in favor of their certainty that these accounts are later symbolic constructions of the community of faith in praise of their new way of life The problem once again is the modern penchant for dismissing all prior modes of thought as historically conditioned while insisting that the miracle of modernity ensures that our own dominant ideas are objective To the victor belongs the history Of course each succeeding dominant culture rewrites just about everything including history to satisfy the demands of its own preconceptions This accounts for the Black Legend invented by English Protestant historians who could see nothing but evil in Catholic initiatives such as the inquisition and earlier the Crusades Our contemporary secularism was able to borrow many preconceptions from Protestantism making it even easier to dismiss the truth values of the Catholic worldview This dismissal has become a universally acknowledged way of becoming a member of the illuminati today One very particular case in point is what Darío Fernández Morera calls The Myth of the Andalusian Paradise which is actually the title of a significant book soon to be released from the Intercollegiate Studies Institute The Andalusian Paradise refers to a period of Muslim rule in Spain which was characterized by enlightened tolerance freedom and cultural diversity for all regardless of religion The problem is that this so called paradise is a complete myth It is almost universally accepted as true in academic circles simply because it buttresses our contemporary cultural mythology which must continue to discredit Christianity as so much narrow minded bigotry Thus the Andalusian paradise is frequently referenced today as a kind of proof that a new Muslim world order

    Original URL path: http://www.catholicculture.org/commentary/otc.cfm?id=1357 (2016-02-11)
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  • Commentary : Insights | Catholic Culture
    Culture On the News In Depth Analysis The City Gates Insights Reviews On the Good Most Popular Archives The Insights eNewsletter Insights provides critical perspective on the issues that affect your life as a Catholic today Delivered twice weekly Subscribe This Insights eNewsletter was sent to subscribers on January 22 2016 eNewsletter Subject Snowy thoughts both timely and timeless Perhaps the most timely item on CatholicCulture org today is our commemoration of the Day of Prayer for the Legal Protection of Unborn Children which the American Bishops have added to our liturgical calendar Jennifer Gregory Miller explains in January 22 Day of Prayer and Penance in the United States By the time you receive this the day may be nearly over but it is never too late for prayer and penance to stem the tide of abortion It is also very fitting that Pope Francis in an address today to the Roman Rota upheld marriage in the strongest possible terms See our news story Pope strongly upholds Christian marriage as attainable ideal rejects other forms of union Pope Francis also changed liturgical norms to allow washing of women s feet on Holy Thursday This ceremony has a peculiar history Consider

    Original URL path: http://www.catholicculture.org/commentary/insights.cfm?task=show&id=3322 (2016-02-11)
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  • A few pointed remarks (from God) | Catholic Culture
    vinegar to the teeth and smoke to the eyes so is the sluggard to those who send him Prv 10 26 A fool takes no pleasure in understanding but only in expressing his opinion 18 2 He who states his case first seems right until the other comes and examines him 18 17 It is bad it is bad says the buyer but when he goes away then he boasts 20 14 He who is sated loathes honey but to one who is hungry everything bitter is sweet 27 7 And my favorite He who blesses his neighbor with a loud voice rising early in the morning will be counted as cursing 27 14 Providence In this recent reading I also benefitted from four proverbs which focus on Divine Providence The lot is cast into the lap but the decision is wholly from the Lord 16 33 The crucible is for silver and the furnace is for gold and God tries hearts 17 3 Many are the plans in the mind of a man but it is the purpose of the Lord that will be established 19 21 The horse is made ready for the day of battle but the victory belongs to the Lord 21 31 Our Relationship with God The following verses teach something valuable about human pride and how it limits our relationship with God We definitely do not want our secular contemporaries to see us making such rookie mistakes Trust in the Lord with all your heart and do not rely on your own insight Prv 2 5 Every word of God proves true he is a shield to those who take refuge in him Do not add to his words lest he rebuke you and you be found a liar 30 5 6 Our Relationship

    Original URL path: http://www.catholicculture.org/commentary/the-city-gates.cfm?id=1222 (2016-02-11)
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  • Change in Holy Thursday liturgy encourages do-it-yourself liturgical experimentation | Catholic Culture
    now been further eroded Again as with the decision allowing altar girls the inclusion of women strips away an important symbol of the all male priesthood The apostles whose feet Our Lord washed at the Last Supper were in fact all males On Holy Thursday especially as we recall the institution of the priesthood it behooves us to recall that fact In years past when service at the altar was restricted to males a young Catholic boy would naturally wonder whether he belonged there Now with altar servers and lectors and cantors and extraordinary ministers all hustling around the sanctuary both male and female but in practice mostly female the pious young Catholic boy wonders whether there s any room left for him Phil Lawler has been a Catholic journalist for more than 30 years He has edited several Catholic magazines and written eight books Founder of Catholic World News he is the news director and lead analyst at CatholicCulture org See full bio Read more from The City Gates Next post Previous post Sound Off CatholicCulture org supporters weigh in All comments are moderated To lighten our editing burden only current donors are allowed to Sound Off If you are a donor log in to see the comment form otherwise please support our work and Sound Off Show 7 Comments Hidden Hide Comments Posted by james w anderson8230 Jan 22 2016 10 54 PM ET USA I notice that the changes do not discuss the kissing of the feet after washing them This is a nice sign of humility but that was not reported as being done at the last supper By adding this it strikes me that we are saying that we know how to do it better than Jesus This is very dangerous territory Posted by rjbennett1294 Jan 22 2016 6 38 PM ET USA As the Church continues to be feminized fewer and fewer of its members will bother going to mass and most of them will eventually leave the Church permanently Like the pious young Catholic boy the men in that group of Church leavers will have wondered whether there s any room left for them At some point will faithful Catholics those loyal to the ancient traditions and teachings of the Church be the only ones who remain actually in the Church Posted by feedback Jan 22 2016 12 01 PM ET USA Washing of the feet connected with the institution of the Sacrament of Holy Orders indicates that priesthood is for service In that symbol we imitate Christ who came not to be served but to serve In my opinion it makes good sense to include women in the ritual especially since women already became involved in many liturgical functions around the sanctuary But in the current climate it also makes sense to skip that optional action altogether lest it become too politicized and confusing Posted by rcdifonzo74559 Jan 22 2016 10 30 AM ET USA The washing of women s feet will

    Original URL path: http://www.catholicculture.org/commentary/the-city-gates.cfm?id=1221 (2016-02-11)
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  • Quick Hits 1: Priest falsely accused?/Religious test for White House?/Liturgical changes we need | Catholic Culture
    any public confidence in district attorney Seth Williams That key witness Daniel Gallagher has a long record of crime drug abuse and changing his stories Yet his testimony bolstered by some astonishing prosecutorial aggression led to the conviction of four priests Now the DA Williams has vowed to appeal the court ruling that overturned the conviction of Msgr William Lynn despite the facts that a this is the second tine the conviction has been overturned and b the priest has already served most of his sentence There s something very wrong here and it s good that the mainstream media have finally noticed Earlier this week I wrote about the prospects for a pan Orthodox council an unprecedented meeting of all the world s Orthodox churches Whether the ambitious plan for such a meeting is successful could be decided by a preparatory session next week and it s noteworthy that Russian Orthodox Patriarch Kirill himself will be attending that session Perhaps even more noteworthy for those who are following closely the delegation from Moscow will include Metropolitan Onufry of Kiev who has expressed serious misgivings about the pan Orthodox council The participation of the Russian Orthodox Church by far the largest of the world s Orthodox bodies is critical to the success of any worldwide Orthodox council Next week s meeting could be a make or break session The crazier liturgical experiments that followed Vatican II have played themselves out in most American parishes Yet now some of those failed experiments are being proposed again as if they were new ideas My very favorite author argues that active Catholics should promote their own policies to restore reverence and suggests Three Liturgical Changes We Need Now Leila is always right of course But if I were making the list her 2

    Original URL path: http://www.catholicculture.org/commentary/the-city-gates.cfm?id=1220 (2016-02-11)
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  • How to deal with suffering, suffering of any kind | Catholic Culture
    entitled Avoiding Bitterness in Suffering How our heroes in faith found peace amid sorrow In thirteen chapters spanning about 250 pages the author covers all of the kinds of suffering I enumerated above Her usual approach is to highlight the life of at least one primary saint in each chapter showing how that saint is a model for the endurance of the type of suffering with which the chapter is concerned To round out each chapter Dr Chervin then introduces a number of other saints including their relevant experiences and notable advice This provides a more thorough response to the challenge at hand She closes each chapter with a series of bullet points outlining the most important things the reader should keep in mind when faced with the same form of suffering A typical example is the chapter entitled Meeting Christ in the Suffering of Fear Chervin recounts the life of Blessed Francis Libermann a nineteenth century convert from Judaism who was raised by his father to be a rabbi and who lived in fear of disappointing his father and also of making the wrong choice between Judaism and Catholicism and between the rabbinate and the priesthood Once Francis finally chose the seminary he was distrusted by the other seminarians because of his Jewish background This contributed to a constant anxiety which manifested itself physically including painful seizures These delayed his ordination and he was relegated for a time to odd jobs The result was that he became a secret adviser to many other seminarians who began to notice the extraordinary wisdom beneath the surface of his weaknesses Ultimately he was ordained and he even attracted others to his plan for a new missionary order which later merged with the Congregation of the Holy Ghost Toward the end of the

    Original URL path: http://www.catholicculture.org/commentary/the-city-gates.cfm?id=1219 (2016-02-11)
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