Author: Mattie Long

A Crack in the Curtain

Chris McDonnell writes about the appointment of six women to the Council for the Economy, which oversees Vatican finances. … “there is a strong and vibrant movement within the Church for a greater recognition of women in the Governance and Liturgy of the Church and certainly the recent appointments made by Francis are a step in the right direction. But that is not enough.”

Statement of the Pastors’ Initiative Austria on the “Instruction on the Pastoral Conversion of Parishes at the Service of missionary mission of the Church”

Statement of the Pastors’ Initiative Austria on the “Instruction on the Pastoral Conversion of Parishes at the Service of missionary mission of the Church.”
“If we were to lead our parishes with this exhorted monarchical clericalism we would be losing those Christians who are jointly responsible and who are the salt and the light of a parish that is turned towards the people.”

Reflections on Reflections

Seamus Ahearne is ruminating again on the everyday goings on in church and life: “It is right to be critical.  There is much to be critical about.  But the warmth, heart and fun of Church has to be celebrated.  Faith of course isn’t ‘Happy Clappy’ but there needs to be a Lifting of the Heart and a smile.  Always.”

Before we make more mistakes: let’s think again about the ‘new’ lectionary!

Thomas O Loughlin offers his thoughts on a “new” lectionary following the recent announcement by the bishops of Scotland. Can we hope that our bishops might engage with Thomas and others before making a decision?
“There is an alternative – one already adopted in the 1973 English-language edition of the Liturgy of the Hours – which is to use a range of translations depending on what portion of scripture is being translated and how it is being used. Indeed, the very fact that in the current lectionary there is a distinct translation of the Psalter (and there is going to be a distinct version of the psalms in the proposed lectionary), shows that the ‘one size fits all’ approach to translations is faulty.”

Enemies at the Gate

Brendan Hoban, in a recent Western People column, cast an eye over the opposition to Pope Francis. “When Benedict was pope, cardinals were falling over themselves hanging on to his every word, delivering reprimands to those who questioned papal tactics and giving sermonettes on loyalty and obedience to the pope. Now with a pope singing from a different hymn-sheet, for some of his cardinals loyalty and obedience seem to be less important.”

The Holy Trinity

Seamus Ahearne comments on three recent losses. On John Hume he says; “John was outstanding in our history. He spoke a different language.  He never gave up.  He talked and talked. He sang. He persisted. He wasn’t limited by a narrow view of history or confined/reduced by political blinkers. He only saw people.  The Unity of people mattered. The future mattered. Living together mattered.  Religion could not be a divider. ….. John Hume is a hero. He is an inspiration.  So all leadership has to be about communication and not dictat.”

Statues Beware

Seamus Ahearne is moved by a speech in the U.S. House of Representative by Alexandria Ocasio Cortez of New York to ask “If we as Church, listened to her words, might we find much of her address applicable to ourselves? How women are treated? How they are excluded for spurious theological reasons.  How even the language of our Liturgy insults them; disrespects them; belittles them.”

A New Lectionary for Scotland – ‘Another fine mess’ ?

The Scottish bishops have approved the use of the Catholic Edition of the English Standard Version (ESV) Bible, published in 2018, as the base text for the new translation of the Lectionary for Scotland.
This version is known for its more ‘literal’ translation and lack of inclusive language.
The Irish bishops have yet to announce a decision about a new lectionary for Ireland. Can we have any hope we will avoid another fiasco like the 2011 Missal?

The Music of Mission

Seamus Ahearne continues to be inspired by his early morning walks.
“We walk humbly into the future. We are indeed ‘tiptoeing’ with reverence into that new world, where there are hints of mystery everywhere.  ….. Ministry has to change. Parish life has to change. Church has to change. Our understanding of Sacrament has to change. Our concept of Liturgy and worship has to change. We have to change”. 

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