Wednesday, 26 October 2011

Archbishop Gilbert of Port of Spain accused of Anti-Semetic speech

Knowing Archbishop Edward Gilbert, I am sure that the comments made were a slip of the tongue rather than hate for Jews. I understand why the Jewish group JTA (Jewish Telegraphic Agency) would make an issue of it. You make issues of slips of the tongue so that others would choose their words carefully.

But how would the JTA get the scripts of the Archbishops homily. As far as I know the homily was not broadcast, and the group listening were Catholics. How weird. Or is it?

In my mind, this all started with comments made by certain politicians, of a racist nature. The Archbishop chastised these politicians and they made issue by reporting him to the anti defamation league. Poor guy. He has been so politically correct for too long, and as he starts to make issue he gets attacked.

The reading for the day was taken from Matthew 22:34-40
"When the Pharisees heard that Jesus had silenced the Sadducees, they gathered together, and one of them, a lawyer, asked him a question to test him. 'Teacher, which commandment in the law is the greatest?'

Jesus said to him, 'You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your mind.' This is the greatest and first commandment.

And a second is like it: You shall love your neighbour as yourself. On these two commandments hangs all the law and the prophets."


All the comments made were in reference to the local politicians and the reading. It was a Homily about love. In the Homily, and according to the Anti Defamation League article Gilbert spoke of the ORIGINAL Jews.

So I beleive the issue is an over reaction and a blatant attack on the Archbishop and the Catholic Church.

Here is the Article from the Anti Defamation League website:
New York, NY, October 25, 2011 … The Anti-Defamation League (ADL) today said it was deeply disturbed by disparaging remarks about Judaism from Archbishop Edward Gilbert, the leader of the Catholic Church in the Port of Spain, who reportedly likened politicians in Trinidad and Tobago to Jews and suggested that, "…they have the mindset of the original Jewish people."

Archbishop Gilbert was reported to have made the remarks during a Jubilee Mass held October 24 at Our Lady of Perpetual Help Roman Catholic Church in San Fernando to celebrate the 225th anniversary of the Roman Catholic mission there.

"The Jews were compassionate and caring for their own, they were compassionate and caring to the people of their nation, to the people of their race, to the people of their ethnic communities. However, that wasn't enough for Jesus. Jesus took that teaching and universalized it," Archbishop Gilbert told his congregation, according to a news report. "In many cases in this country, there are people who love one another, who are compassionate, but they have the mindset of the original Jewish people. They are good to their own ... but they have not universalized the concept of love."

Abraham H. Foxman, ADL National Director, said the archbishop's statements as reported were "a disturbing repackaging of ancient anti-Jewish canards and supersessionist beliefs."

"Archbishop Gilbert devalues Judaism over and against Christianity," said Mr. Foxman. "The false notion that Jews only care about themselves and don't care enough about others is one of the major pillars of classical anti-Semitism."

"While the Catholic Church has made tremendous strides in countering anti-Jewish notions such as the belief that the advent of Christianity superseded Judaism, Archbishop Gilbert's statements show that he has not internalized the important reforms of Vatican II."


The article speaks of the Vatican II reform document. It is called NOSTRA AETATE, Latin for "In our Time". The document calls for good relations between Catholics and other Religions: Hindus, Buddhists, Muslims, Jews and other religions. The last paragraph of the document states:
The Church reproves, as foreign to the mind of Christ, any discrimination against men or harassment of them because of their race, color, condition of life, or religion. On the contrary, following in the footsteps of the holy Apostles Peter and Paul, this sacred synod ardently implores the Christian faithful to "maintain good fellowship among the nations" (1 Peter 2:12), and, if possible, to live for their part in peace with all men, so that they may truly be sons of the Father who is in heaven.


I am sure, that Archbishop Edward Gilbert will issue a public apology. Not for the sentiment expressed (Love your fellow man universally, as Christ loved), but the slip of the tongue that may have caused offence to Jews. But then if he does that, does that mean he has to apologise to the politicians who make awful statements. What is the church if we cannot speak out against injustice?

Shub Divali to all Hindus in Trinidad and around the world

Happy Divali to all my Hindu friends in Trinidad and around the world. May there always be light overcoming the darkness that may try to creep into your life.

Below is a message from the Pope for the festival of Divali and to Hindus.


VATICAN CITY, OCT. 20, 2011 (Zenit.org).- The president of the Pontifical Council for Interreligious Dialogue is inviting Hindus to "join hands in promoting religious freedom as our shared responsibility, by asking the leaders of nations never to disregard the religious dimension of the human person."

Cardinal Jean-Louis Tauran made this invitation in the Vatican's customary greeting to Hindus for Deepvali. The message was released today.

Deepvali celebrates the victory of truth over falsehood, of light over darkness, of life over death, of good over evil. The celebrations, which begin this year on Oct. 26, last three days and mark the beginning of a new year, a time for family reconciliation, especially among brothers and sisters, and adoration of the divine.

"There are many fields in which a specific contribution can be made to the common good, such as the defense of life and the dignity of the family, the sound education of children, honesty in daily conduct, and the preservation of natural resources, to name a few," the cardinal wrote in the message.

He noted the plight of those who are "exposed to bias, prejudice, hate propaganda, discrimination and persecution on the basis of religious affiliation." And he said that religious freedom is "the answer to religiously motivated conflicts in many parts of the world."

"Religious freedom is numbered among the fundamental human rights rooted in the dignity of the human person," Cardinal Tauran stated. "When it is jeopardized or denied, all other human rights are endangered."

The cardinal also highlighted some of the main elements of religious freedom.

He said: "Religious freedom necessarily includes immunity from coercion by any individual, group, community or institution. Though the exercise of this right entails the freedom of every person to profess, practice and propagate his or her religion or belief, in public or in private, alone or in a community, it also involves a serious obligation on the part of civil authorities, individuals and groups to respect the freedom of others. Moreover, it includes the freedom to change one's own religion."

Monday, 24 October 2011

Rest in Peace Rev Cyril Paul

The Caribbean Catholic would like to offer his condolences to the family of the late Reverend Cyril Paul - Moderator of the Presbyterian Church in Trinidad.

There are some interesting newspaper articles on the passing of the good reverend, but nothing on the church website: http://presbyterianchurchtt.org/default.aspx

Rest in Peace good and faithful Servant of the Lord Jesus Christ.


The following is an article on Rev Paul By Lara Pickford-Gordon Monday, October 24 2011 from the Newsday Newspapers:

Former Moderator of the Presbyterian Church and head of the Inter-Religious Organisation (IRO)Reverend Cyril Paul, 70, lost his battle with prostate cancer yesterday.

Paul died at about 9 am yesterday at Vistas House, a hospice run by the Cancer Society of TT on the compound of the St James Medical Complex. Paul had for a few years been dealing with other medical conditions but it was only a year ago that prostate cancer was diagnosed.

In an interview at their San Juan home yesterday, Paul’s wife of 46 years, Barbara said, “He really suffered.”

When his health deteriorated, Paul was warded at the Eric Williams Medical Sciences Complex, Mt Hope where he spent two weeks. Last Friday, he was moved to Vistas House. Doctors at Mt Hope had given him one to seven weeks to live.

Despite this, Barbara said her husband was ready for the afterlife.

“He kept saying he wanted to go home. He did not mean here (San Juan). He meant his heavenly home. He was prepared to go,” said Barbara.

She told Newsday he was never bitter about his illness or questioned why God allowed this to happen. “He accepted it.”

Reflecting on her husband’s life Barbara said, “He lived a good life and was able to do a lot.

“He gave his life for his vocation. No one could have faulted him for that. He really enjoyed life, living, and what he was doing. If he had to do it all over, he would do it the same.”

Barbara said Paul had expressed a wish for “two more years” to complete a book he was working on based on stories from his childhood. Paul last year launched the book Response to a Call, a compilation of his speeches from 1979-2006.

Paul is remembered for his sense of humour and remarked to friends that he was the most beaten priest in the country. He was robbed once but beaten twice.

In February 2005, as president of the IRO, Paul was beaten and robbed of a car at Curepe not long after dropping home a fellow IRO member, who had attended a meeting with him at Archbishop’s House, Port-of-Spain.

In the second incident, Paul was accosted at the Aramalaya church, Tunapuna as he was about to open the gate of the church.

Paul served for three terms as head of the IRO, and was a member of the organisation for more than 20 years. He served three two-year terms as Moderator of the Synod of the Presbyterian Church. He was well known for his Palm Sunday sermons and being outspoken on national issues. In July, he celebrated 40 years serving the church.

At the service held at the Curepe Presbyterian Church, Paul said, “If my life and ministry have helped persons, congregations and communities in any way, then I give credit to Almighty God and I join with the hymn-writer in saying, to God be the glory, great things he has done.”

Paul’s funeral is expected to take place at the Susamachar Church, San Fernando where he was ordained.

Moderator of the Presbyterian Church Brenda Bullock said Paul was a tower of strength not only in the Presbyterian Church but also as president of the IRO. According to Bullock, “He was a minister of the people. A sterling light in the Presbyterian Church.”

There was controversy in 2003 at the opening of Parliament when Paul in his prayer said, “We ask your forgiveness for the times when in our desire to score points we make statements and say things which we know are not true and responsible.”

Former Moderator Elvis Elahie said Paul was fair to all and did not have political bias.

“He commented as he interpreted, based on his own opinion.” Paul gave of himself as a counsellor and according to Elahie, “confronted individuals” where necessary.

IRO president Emrol Gould said Paul was a beloved friend whose service to the organisation will always be remembered. Gould said the passing was a great loss for him, members of the IRO and the country. He extended prayers to Paul’s family and members of the Presbyterian Church and persons who knew Paul.

Secretary general of the Sanatan Dharma Maha Sabha Satnarayan Maharaj, who worked alongside Paul in the IRO for many years said, “He was an active member of the IRO to which we all belonged. For many years he provided good service, leadership in the organisation and held various religious grouping together.”

Maharaj also worked with Paul in other groups and said he was thankful for the contribution he made to “religious unity in the land.”

Acting Prime Minister Winston Dookeran extended condolences on behalf of Prime Minister Kamla Persad-Bissessar and the Government.

Dookeran said Paul was one of the architects of the modern Presbyterian church in TT and the West Indies.

“He was one of our country’s builders who left no stone unturned in playing his role to fashion a new society, of which all of us were partners. He gave selflessly to the cause of youth empowerment, and played a significant part in the development of a society where equality, social justice, peace and truth were hallmarks of his contribution.”

Dookeran said Paul’s death was a great loss to the church and the nation. He described him as a “deep thinker, remarkable orator and an attentive listener, who had the distinct passion to uplift the human condition for all his congregation and the populace at large. He gave new credentials to service which must always be conducted within the bounds of moral and ethical values.

He was committed to truthful service, which at times did not receive the fullest support of all.”

Dookeran said Paul was a great soul and true patriot who always practiced national unity and would be sadly missed by all.

When Newsday was started in 1993, Paul blessed the office at 19-21 Chacon Street, Port-of- Spain. He hoped for organisation to do its work with honesty and responsibility.

Archbishop Gilbert rocks TNT - Allyuh! Stop the hate!

It is my belief that Archbishop Gilbert was not accepted when he first came to Trinidad. Being an American did not help his cause. Fire fueled by an arrogant, unthinking priest who chose to publicly make issue of the American Archbishop being appointed by a European Church over a West Indian Archdiocese. What a sad embarrassment to our ONE (multi ethnic) church.

But time heals all wounds and Archbishop Gilbert has become loved by the majority of the Catholic population in his Archdiocese. We have become accustomed to "his way".

Part of his "way" is being politically correct. Well, So I believed. Well, imagine my suprise to hear his strong and chastising words to a nation contemplating racial hate in their hearts. Good Job Gilbert! Shake them. They need it.

Among those in my generation, I never saw much racism, until recently. People would intimate dislike of one race or another to me. NO! God made us all.... "yuh musn't think like that man."

This is the time of Obama. Black people didn't put him there. It was the white vote. Racism in the US before Obama was at it's lowest ebb. Now it has increased slightly, but only because Obama isn't turning around the economy like they hoped he would, and so there is a "lashing out".

We need to get it together here in Trinidad. Stop the Hate.

The Article written by Camile Bethel of the Trinidad Express Newspaper of October 24th 2011 says it all:

Gilbert said the tendency of many people within this society is still to take care of their own.

"Politicians take care of their own constituencies on the basis of race, ethnicity or politics, and one of the things we need as a country—the Prime Minister Kamla Persad-Bissessar has said it, the President George Maxwell Richards has said it—we need to return to values of universal nature.

"One of the things that we have to watch is the tribalism in the Middle East that is still going on in places like Afghanistan and Iraq. If people... just... take care of their own, it is not good for the country," he said.

He said a lack of values inevitably shows up in behaviour eventually, if not immediately, but especially when people have no religious tradition to fall back on.

"Which is why they can cut each other on the streets and have the drug wars and the violence.

"The way back from that is to have all the religious traditions. I am familiar with the (IRO) Inter-Religious Organisation, talking to their people and teaching them the right things, and talking to the young people about values because some of these kids have absolutely nothing; they get nothing from their families."

He said the curfew imposed under the State of Emergency had reduced the number of killings, but he would much rather see the country renewing itself in terms of values to eventually get to the point where curfews would no longer be needed; because while it was necessary to have a curfew, it was a shame that this country needed it.

"I believe the value problem is an enormous issue. It is a growing problem for the Caribbean and it is spreading everywhere," Gilbert said.

World population growing however, it is expected to shrink after 2070

This article from Reuters on october 24th 2011, freaks me out, but it does show that there really is no overpopulation.

LONDON (Reuters) -- If the world follows the demographic habits of Europe -- and that's a big if -- by the year 2200 it could be home to a population of less than half its current level, living in housing built for almost three times that number.

With the global population estimated to pass 7 billion on October 31, many of policymakers' short-term worries revolve around providing resources for the additional 2-3 billion people expected to be born in the next half-century.

Numbers of this magnitude inevitably conjure up terrifying visions of shortage and chaos. But in fact improvements in food production and technology have allowed population growth to continue unimpeded and relatively smoothly, and the real potential nightmare is of a rapidly aging population, combined with collapsing birthrates in both rich and poor states.

Many demographers and long-term planners say the challenge for the next century will be less dealing with growing numbers of people and more managing the much larger population of aged and perhaps dependent people while finding new strategies to deliver prosperity, jobs and essential services.

The trend has already contributed to the current global financial crisis by driving up health and social care bills and perhaps also undermining productivity. But while politicians tie themselves in knots over short-term worries, experts say there is not enough discussion of longer-term demographic challenges.

"It's not a world that's going to look anything like any world or population that has existed before," says Jack Goldstone, professor of public policy and a leading demographics expert at Washington's George Mason University.

"We thought that overpopulation was going to force humanity to expand outward to the stars. That doesn't look like the problem at all. And the policy framework isn't set up at all to handle these longer-term issues."

With many of the world's poorer countries still seeing strong growth, the global fertility rate -- the number of children born per couple -- remains around 2.5, more than enough to replace every person currently alive.

But in richer countries, the rate has already nosedived. Russia, Singapore and several other developed countries have introduced policies to boost fertility but with mixed success.

Exact predictions vary, but most projections suggest the global population will peak at around 9 billion around 2070 and then start to fall, perhaps very fast.

FOR NOW, A CROWDED, OLDER WORLD

In the Western world, that date will see both the children of the "baby boomers" -- many of them childless or with fewer children, if current trends hold -- reaching the end of their lives. In the developing world, the "youth bulge" -- the large cohort of young people currently most striking in the Middle East -- will also be dying off.

"The decline in fertility has gone the furthest certainly in the developed world but it is falling very rapidly in most middle-income countries and even some of the more successful lower-income countries," said Daniel Cotlear, a population expert at the World Bank specializing in Latin America.

"With an aging population, that brings challenges."

By 2030, more than a third of the population in a number of Western states as well as some Asian economies, such as Japan and Korea, will be aged over 65.

Many developing states, most notably China with its one-child policy but also a growing number of other nations, will follow suit -- often without the financial resources to help pay for the cost of medical and nursing care.

"It's the seminal issue of our time," says Michael Hodin, executive director of the New York-based Global Coalition on Aging and a senior fellow at the Council on Foreign Relations.

"The numbers are stunning. The exact projections vary but it doesn't really matter because they are all going in the same direction."

In the developed world, most countries rely on a large number of working taxpayers to pay for the care and pensions of a relatively small group of elderly people. In poorer countries, extended families tend to look after the elderly.

Neither of those models, experts say, is designed to cope with the changed demographics of more old and fewer young.

AN EMPTY PLANET?

In the short-term, many rich countries have plugged the demographic gap by importing young people from elsewhere in the world, particularly to provide care for the elderly and perform other manual tasks. That, too, may become unsustainable in the years to come as those sources of labor dry up due to falling fertility rates.

Some remain optimistic.

"This will be a much older world but it will also be a much more educated world," said Sergei Scherbov, research group leader at the Vienna Institute of Demography.

"People are becoming healthier. I personally think we will adjust to these things."

Scherbov and colleagues at the World Population Programme of the International Institute for Applied Systems Analysis have put considerable effort into the near-impossible task of predicting the world's population over the coming two centuries.

At one extreme, if the world's fertility rate were to fall to the same level as that of Shanghai, at around 0.8 per couple, then by the early 22nd century population would be falling so fast that it would be under a billion by 2150.

If it were closer to the European Union average of 1.5 then population would fall below 5 billion around 2140 and 3 billion by 2200. In contrast, maintaining the current rate of 2.5 would see it top 15 billion by 2100.

Those projections assume global life expectancy continues to rise. Should it not, the population slump would be faster still.

"Unpredictability is huge," he says. "(But) it could be a very odd world."

The biggest question that no one has any clear answer to at present, experts say, is whether it is possible to plan for economic growth that will provide jobs and hope for both older workers and those younger people entering the workforce.

In a worst-case scenario of generational conflict, an elderly and middle-aged cohort might block jobs and lobby ferociously to keep up unsustainable entitlements while an angry youth feel denied opportunities and are forced to pay the ultimate financial bill. Some believe that phenomenon is perhaps already becoming visible in parts of the developed world.

"The real problem about the aging population is an economic growth problem," says George Mason University's Goldstone.

"If we have growth, we can afford the pensions and healthcare for the older generation. But if we don't, everyone is going to suffer."


(Editing by Sonya Hepinstall)

Sunday, 23 October 2011

CATHOLIC CHURCH STATISTICS (as at 31st Dec 2009)

Fides News Service has sent the following statistics which give an overview of the missionary Church all over the world. The tables are taken from the lastest edition of the 'Church's Book of Statistics' published (updated to December 31, 2009) regarding members of the Church, church structures in the field of pastoral care, healthcare, welfare and education. Please note that variations, increase or decrease, emerging from our own comparison with last year's figures, are marked increase (+) or decrease (-).

World Population

To December 31, 2009 the world population was equal to 6.777.599.000 people, with an increase of 79.246 million compared with the previous year. Population growth was registered on every continent: Africa (+19,983,000); America (+8,744,000); Asia (+47,702, 000); Oceania (+967,000); Europe (+1,850,000) .

Catholics

On the same date Catholics in the world numbered 1,180,665,000 with an overall increase of 14,951,000 more than the previous year. he increase affects all continents: Africa (+6,530,000); America (+5,863,000); Asia (+1,814,000); Europe (+597,000), Oceania (+147,000).

The World percentage of Catholics increased by 0.02%, settling at 17.42%. By continent: increases were registered in Africa (+0.3); America (+0.04) and Asia (+ 0.01), a drop in numbers was registered, like last year, in Europe (- 0.02) and Oceania (- 0.3).

Persons and Catholics per priest

This year again the number of persons per priest in the world increased by 139 units, average 13,154. The distribution by continent: increase in America (+70),
Europe (+42) and Oceania (+181), and a drop in numbers in Africa (-313) and Asia (-628).

The number of Catholics per priest in the world increased by 27 units, average 2,876. We have increases on every continent except Asia: Africa (+25); America (+32); Asia (-30); Europe (+16); ceania (+25).

Dioceses and missions

The number of dioceses increased by 11 more than the previous year to 2,956, with new circumscriptions created in: Africa (+3), America (+2), Asia (+6). Mission stations with a resident priest 1850 (185 more than in the previous year) and increases registered in Africa (+280) and America (+94). Decreases in Asia (-69), Europe (-110) and Oceania (-10).

Mission Stations without a resident priest increased in number by 5,459 units, to 130,948. Increases registered in Africa (+2,143), America (+2,131), Asia (+937) and Oceania (+278), decreases in Europe (-30).

Bishops

The total number of Bishops in the world increased by 63 units, to 5,065. Overall the increase in numbers regard both diocesan and religious Bishops. Diocesan Bishops number 3,828 (42 more than in the previous year); Religious Bishops number 1,237 (21 more). The increase in diocesan Bishops is registered on every continent: Africa (+2), America (+19), Asia (+1), Europe (+17), Oceania (+3). The only decrease in religious Bishops was registered in Oceania (-1), the increase was registered in Africa (+10), America (+4), Asia (+5) and Europe (+3).

Priests

The total number of priests in the world increased by 1,427 units more than in the previous year, to 410,593. The only continent which registered a decrease was once again Europe (-1,674), wheras figures grew in Africa (+1155), America (+413), Asia (+1519) and Oceania (+14). Diocesan priests increased by 1,535 units, reaching a total of +275,542, with increases in Africa (+888), America (+946), Asia (+780) and Oceania (+26) but numbers dropped in Europe (-1105). The number of Religious priests decreased by 108 units to a total of 135,051. Increases, following the trend of recent years are Africa (+267) and Asia (+739), but decreases affect America (-533), Europe (-569) and Oceania (-12) .

Permanent Deacons

Permanent deacons in the world increased by 952 units, reaching 38,155. The greatest increase is once again in America (+552) and Europe (+326), followed by Oceania (+57) and Asia (+23). The only decrease was registered in Africa (-6). Diocesan permanent deacons are 37,592 in the world, with an overall increase of 1,053 units.


They increased on every continent except Africa (-2), precisely: America (+623), Asia (+15), Europe (+359) and Oceania (+58). Religious permanent deacons are 563, decreased by 101 units compared to the previous year, with the only increase in Asia (+8) and decreases in Africa (-4), America (-71), Europe (-33), Oceania (-1).

Men and women religious

The non-religious priests decreased globally by 412 units to 54,229. Increases were registered only in Africa (+294), but decreases in America (-195), Asia (-60), Europe (-445) and Oceania (-6). This confirms the overall decrease in the number of women religious (-9697) that are a total of 729,371, divided as follows: This year we also confirm the increase in Africa (+1249) and Asia (+1399), decrease in America (-4681), Europe ( -7468) and Oceania (-196).

Members of Secular Institutes, male and female

Members of male secular institutes number 737 with an overall decrease of 6 units. At the continental level there is an increase in Africa (+5) and America (+3), Oceania unvaried, while there is a decrease in Asia (-1) and Europe (-13). The female members of secular institutes have also decreased this year, a total of 386 units, for a number of 26,260 members. An increase in Africa (+37), Asia (+180) and Oceania (+1), decrease in America (-30) and Europe (-574).

Lay missionaries and catechists

The number of lay missionaries in the world is 320,226 units, with an overall increase of 3,390 units and increase in Africa (+736), Asia (+3774) and Europe (+428). Decreases were recorded in America (-1531) and Oceania (-17). Catechists in the world increased to a total of 68,515 units to 3,151,077. Numbers increase in Africa (+19,538), America (+36,319), Asia (+13,365) and Oceania (+287). The only decrease is in Europe (-994)

Major seminarians

The number of major seminarians, diocesan and religious, also increased this year: they are globally 954 more candidates for priesthood, who have thus reached a total of 117,978. Increases, as occurred in previous years, in Africa (+565), Asia (+781) and Oceania (+15), while this year decreases in America (-60) and Europe (-347). The major diocesan seminarians are 71,219 (43 more than in the previous year) and 46,759 religious ones (+911). Diocesan seminarians increases are registered in Africa (+425) and Asia (+121), decreases are registered in America (-353) and Oceania (-14) and Europe (-136). The religious seminarians increase in Africa (+140
Health, charity and assistance institutes

Charity and assistance institutes run in the world by the Church include: 5,558 hospitals most of them in America (1721) and Africa (1290); 17,763 dispensaries, mainly in America (5495), Africa (5280) and Asia ( 3634), 561 care Homes for people with Leprosy mainly in Asia (288) and Africa (174); 16,073 Homes for the elderly, or chronically ill or people with a disability, mainly in Europe (8238) and America (4144); 9,956 orphanages, about one third in Asia (3406); 12,387 creches, 13,736 marriage counseling centers mainly in Europe (5948) and America (4696); 36,933 education or social rehabilitation centers and 12,050 other kinds of institutions, mainly in America (4484 ), Europe (3939) and Asia (1857).

Ecclesiastical Circumscriptions dependent on the Congregation for the Evangelization of Peoples

To 1 October 2011, the ecclesiastical Circumscriptions dependent on the Congregation for the Evangelization of Peoples (CEP) were 1103. Mainly in Africa (499) and Asia (473). Followed by America (85) and Oceania (46).

World Mission Day

Today is the fourth Sunday in October. Get your mission on!

Modern religious Art - Brian Whelan


The Martrydom of St Edmund by Brian Whelan


Some time ago I lamented that in Trinidad there are few people doing religious (Christian) art. In the greater world there are those who paint religious art, and Brian Whelan is one such artist.

Now I can't say that his art is fantastic. I leave that up to the crisics. What I know is that I love the photos of the pieces. And it has been my experience that if the photo is great, then the actual piece must be phenomenal.

According to the Independent news agency Brian Whelan is having an exhibition at St Martin in the Fields, Trafalgar Square, (london England) from 8 - 20 November. His art is described below:

Brian Whelan's paintings, much like the medieval art he admires, depict a sublime comedy of life's glories and tragedies on both religious and secular plains.

As a 'visionary painter', Whelan's religious works have been shown alongside those of Stanley Spencer, Peter Howson, Eric Gill and Marc Chagall, and can be found in public and private collections worldwide. His Martyrdom of St. Edmund permanently hangs in St Edmundsbury Cathedral. Other religious institutions where his work can be seen are in Santiago de Compostela in Spain, Czestochowa in Poland; and Ohio in the USA.

In addition to painting religious subjects, Whelan, whose father hails from Dublin and mother from Kilkenny, feels compelled to paint London, the city he grew up in. This immigrant status and the theme of the journey inform the work: the street, the pubs and bars, the church, the underground, the train and the red bus.


Wikipedia has this to say about his art:

Whelan's propensity to merge both the sublime with the ridiculous is not always readily embraced. His paintings in the Window Gallery of St. Martins School of Art (London) were turned to face the wall after complaints were made from the public.


Seamus Heaney, Spokeof Whelan's work: "His work is bold and commanding."

Who is Seamus Heaney? Well Seamus Heaney he is an Irish poet, writer and lecturer. who has received the Nobel Prize in Literature (1995), the Golden Wreath of Poetry (2001), T. S. Eliot Prize (2006) and two Whitbread prizes (1996 and 1999). He was both the Harvard and the Oxford Professor of Poetry and was made a Commandeur de l'Ordre des Arts et Lettres in 1996. In 2011, he was named one of "Britain's top 300 intellectuals" by The Observer. So when Seamus Heaney speaks, many listen.

Sister Wendy Beckett described Brian When's work as: "Clear, strong, prayerful work with joy at its centre."

Sister Wendy Beckett is a South African-born British art expert, consecrated virgin and contemplative hermit who became a celebrity during the 1990s, presenting a series of acclaimed art history documentaries for the BBC.

Below is a series of Paintings from Whelan:


Album cover by Brian Whelan for the Band "The Popes"


Brian Whelan - CityScape (London)

CUBAN CARDINAL RESIGNS AFTER A LIFE OF FIGHTING FOR LOVE

What an inspiring news story. A freedom fighter for love has arrived at the age of retirement as Archbishop. I am sure there were many times when this great Catholic must have thought that he would not live to see his 75th Birthday. Here is the story from the Catholic News Agency:

Havana, Cuba, Oct 21, 2011 / 02:01 pm (CNA).- Cardinal Jaime Ortega of Havana, Cuba submitted his resignation as Archbishop of Havana on Oct. 18, upon reaching the canonical age of retirement.

According to Canon Law, bishops must submit their resignations upon reaching the age of 75. The Pope has the authority to decide whether to accept the resignation or to allow a bishop to remain in office.

In recent years Cardinal Ortega has become one of the principal mediators with the Cuban government on issues such as the release of political prisoners. Between 2010 and 2011, 115 prisoners were freed, 103 of which traveled to Spain with their family members.

Cardinal Jaime Ortega was born on Oct. 18, 1936. He studied theology at the seminary of St. Albert the Great in Matanzas, Cuba, and at the Seminary for Priests of the Foreign Missions in Quebec, Canada.

He was ordained a priest on Aug. 2, 1964. In 1966 he was imprisoned by the Communist government and held in a work camp until 1967.

In December of 1978 he was named bishop of Pinar del Rio and in 1981 he was appointed Archbishop of Havana. He was president of the Cuban Bishops’ Conference from 1988 to 1990.

The cardinal also hosted John Paul II during his historic visit to Cuba in 1998.

Give the Catholic Money and He'll have another child... or five

Well I am against this idea.

The article from Catholic News Agency on September 1st 2011 concerns me. A Catholic Parish in an Indian City of Kerala, have decided to pay money to Catholic Families when they have their fifth child as an incentive for Catholic Families to have more children.

A parish in Kerala’s Wayand district now offers fixed-rate deposits of $225 that are held in the name of the fifth child born to a Catholic family in 2011.

Fr. Jose Kocharackal, vicar of St. Vincent De Paul Forane Church in Kalpetta, said that the church had issued deposits to two families in the parish. Part of the Sunday collection is set aside for funding the deposits.

The program was planned and instituted with help from the Sion Prolife Movement in the Diocese of Mananthavady, UCA News reports.

Salu Mecheril, the organization’s regional coordinator, said the campaign’s popularity is increasing. A second parish is preparing to adopt the same plan.


Well there is a concern that the Catholic Population is on the decline.

In 2008 the Kerala Catholic Bishops’ Conference said that a family trend to have only one child or none at all would imperil the Catholic community.

The 2001 census said that Christians made up 19 percent of Kerala’s population of over 31 million, a drop from the 1991 census which showed they made up 19.5 percent. Kerala is mostly Hindu, but Muslims account for about 25 percent of the population.


The Indian government has an initiative to encourage parents to make two children the norm. So there are those who will oppose that, and I agree with them. BUT FIVE CHILDREN? Let's leave that up to God and His plan.

Thursday, 20 October 2011

British Monarch can marry a Catholic but cannot convert

The Catholic News Agency has an interesting article by David Kerr about the spouse of the British Monarch being allowed to be Catholic:

The Catholic Church in the United Kingdom is giving a mixed reaction to plans to reform the centuries old law that prevents the British monarch from being Catholic or marrying a Catholic.

“The Act of Settlement amounts to iniquitous anti-Catholic discrimination,” said Peter Kearney, spokesman for the Catholic Bishops of Scotland.

The U.K. Prime Minister, David Cameron, revealed this week that he has written to the 15 other Commonwealth states where Queen Elizabeth is head of state with a view to reforming the Act of Settlement, which has been in force since 1701.

“This rule is a historical anomaly - it does not, for example, bar those who marry spouses of other faiths - and we do not think it can continue to be justified,” wrote Cameron.

However, the proposal does not include lifting the ban on Catholics ascending to the throne. The reason offered for this is that, upon coronation, the British monarch automatically becomes the Supreme Governor of the Church of England.

“While a partial repeal is welcome, the continuing ban on a Catholic becoming head of state remains state-sponsored sectarianism,” Kearney told CNA Oct. 14.

Prime Minister Cameron is due to discuss his proposal with fellow Commonwealth leaders when they meet at a summit in Perth, Australia, later this month. Already the Prime Minister of Canada, Stephen Harper, has said he will support the reform.

The Act of Settlement was originally passed to prevent the descendants of the Catholic King James II from ascending the throne. He was deposed in the 1688 “Glorious Revolution” by supporters of the Protestant William and Mary. Mary was the eldest Protestant daughter of James II and was married to William of Orange, who later became William III.

In recent years, the Act has affected several members of the British royal family.

In 2001, Lord Nicholas Windsor, the youngest son of the Duke and Duchess of Kent, permanently forfeited his right to the royal succession by converting to Catholicism.

In 2008, Autumn Kelly, the Canadian fiancée of the Queen’s grandson Peter Philips, renounced her Catholicism in favor of Anglicanism, thus preserving her husband’s slim chances of becoming king. He is currently 11th in line to the throne.

The U.K. Prime Minister’s other proposals for reforming the monarchy include ending the current preference given to male heirs over their older sisters.

“We espouse gender equality in all other aspects of life and it is an anomaly that in the rules relating to the highest public office we continue to enshrine male superiority,” wrote Cameron.

Monday, 17 October 2011

Trinidad and Tobago - the worlds best Travel Destination.

The article in the Trinidad Express says "T&T is World's Best Tourist Destination"

How did this little island achieve such a status? Well a group of Tourism organisations came up with it. They are called: The European Union Council on Tourism and Trade (EUCTT)

I searched for this group and could find no website. Not even a reference to them. Who are they?

... and has anybody told America about TRINIDAD and Tobago and our new status?

The award has previously been presented to Syria in 2007, Turkey in 2008, United Arab Emirates in 2009 and the Republic of Korea (South Korea) in 2010.


I am so happy that these people are seeing what I have seen, and know what I have known...

Welcome to the Caribbean... Welcome to Trinidad and Tobago.

Gordon Anthony Pantin - archbishop of Port of Spain



Rev Gordon Anthony Patin – 8th Archbishop of Port of Spain

27 Aug 1929 - Born - Port of Spain
3 Jul 1955 - Ordained Priest Priest of Congregation of the Holy Spirit
29 Nov 1967 - Appointed Archbishop of Port of Spain,
19 Mar 1968 - Ordained Bishop Archbishop of Port of Spain,
11 Mar 2000 - Died Archbishop of Port of Spain,

The living water website has a very nice article taken from the Sunday Guardian of March 19th 2000 about the man Archbishop Anthony Pantin after his death.

Anthony Gordon Pantin was born in Port of Spain in August 27, 1929, the second son of Julian Andrew Pantin, a business executive and his wife Agnes, nee Mazeley.

He received his primary education at Sacred Heart School and Belmont Intermediate School (now the Belmont Boys’ Secondary RC School). From the latter he won a Government Scholarship, (called a Government Exhibition in those days) to St Mary’s College. Also among the group of Exhibition winners from that school was Ellis Clarke who would become first President of independent Trinidad and Tobago.

He also took part in sports, playing cricket and football and was a member of the Sixth Trinidad Sea Scouts, under the direction of the saintly Fr Cristobal Valdez. At St Mary’s, Anthony Pantin was in the top academic stream and although considered a strong contender for the open island scholarship, the young Pantin decided to enter the priesthood at age 17 and was anxious to begin his priestly studies.
His elder brother, Fr Gerald “Gerry” Pantin once observed that “Tony” wanted to be a priest from the time he was seven years old. He had been an acolyte at St Patrick’s Church from an early age.

He spent a short time teaching at St Mary’s College before embarking for Canada.
Archbishop Pantin entered the novitiate of the Holy Ghost Congregation in Canada in 1946 and attended the University of Montreal, graduating with his BA degree. He returned to Trinidad in 1949 for a three-year teaching stint at St Mary’s College.
In 1952 he left for Dublin, Ireland, where he pursued studies in Theology. He was ordained priest on the 3rd July, 1955 and was sent to Guadeloupe as a missionary priest until 1959. He returned to Trinidad to teach at Fatima College in Port of Spain until 1964.

In 1965 he returned to St Mary’s College where he was elected to the post of Religious Superior, where he served until 1967. In November of that year, he was requested to accept responsibilities as head of the Archdiocese of Port of Spain, a post which was left vacant by the resignation of the legendary Count Finbar Ryan.

Father Anthony Pantin’s Episcopal consecration took place on March 19, 1968.
As Archbishop he took the motto, “All things to all men” which would today be translated, “All things to all people”. During his 32 years as Archbishop, he made strenuous efforts to fulfill the expectations of that motto.

Bishop Galt, who was a close friend from school days remembers him as having the ability to meet people of all classes on equal terms. He was also able to censure anyone if he thought that that person had done something wrong, but his admonitions were always made in a charitable manner. He was especially concerned with enriching the lives of the disadvantaged and underprivileged. He insisted on seeing anyone who visited, took all telephone calls, and wrote innumerable letters to people at home and abroad.

It was his great pleasure to visit the hospitals, and homes for the elderly and destitute on Christmas Day, where he would chat and sing with the inmates.
He founded the Mary Care Centre to provide a home for pregnant unmarried teenagers. In his sermons he usually called attention to the lot of the homeless and the lonely.
He is remembered as a mediator in the troubled times of both the Black Power crisis and the attempted coup. Many people also refer to the encouragement they received from him during times of personal crisis.

He was instrumental in forming the Inter-Religious Organization and took an active role in that group. He also took an active role in the activities of the Antilles Episcopal Conference, the association of Caribbean Bishops.

He was a humanist, the people’s priest.



The National Library website has another interesting article about Gordon Anthony Pantin.

The Roman Catholic Church has accepted the Government's offer for an official funeral for Archbishop Anthony Pantin.

Pantin's funeral rites will be spread over a three-day period, beginning on Thursday with an official service and ending with his burial on Saturday at the Cathedral crypt.

The Catholic Church has also accepted the proposal of acting Prime Minister Lindsay Gillette that there be a national day of prayer.

Pantin, 70, died in his sleep on Sunday of acute heart failure. He was the third bishop to die at the Archbishop's House at 27 Maraval Road, Queen's Park West.

The last burial of a Roman Catholic bishop in T&T took place over 59 years ago. Bishop John Pius Dowling also died in his sleep in a chair at the house on June 6, 1940. Bishop Patrick Vincent Flood, who built the house, was the first bishop to die there on May 17, 1907. Bishop Finbar Ryan, who followed Dowling, was buried in Ireland.

Auxiliary Bishop John Mendes has taken over responsibility of the diocese, in keeping with Code 419 of the Code of Canon Law.

Yesterday, Mendes, Fr. Christian Pereira, Fr. Clyde Harvey, Fr. Joseph Harris, Fr. Garfield Rochard and Abbot Francis Alleyne of Mt St Benedict were at Archbishop's House overseeing funeral arrangements. Some of these senior clergymen represent the College of Consultors, which acts in emergency cases in administration of the church.

Pereira said, "The Archbishop has contributed tremendously to the country. It is up to us to make sure that his passing is not a loss, but that we are able to build and to integrate his contribution into the fabric of our national life. We will lose something if we throw it away."

The Archbishop's body will arrive at the Cathedral of Immaculate Conception, Independence Square, on Thursday at 6 p.m. for a Pontifical Mass presided over by the Papal Pro-Nuncio Archbishop Eugenio Sbarbaro DD. Archbishop Edgerton Clarke, president of the Antilles Episcopal conference, will deliver the homily.

Government officials, the diplomatic corps and representatives of religious groups are expected to attend this service.

The body will lie in state at the Cathedral on Friday from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. for public viewing and services will also be held for schoolchildren.

At 10 a.m. on Saturday the church will say farewell to Pantin after the Archdiocese of Port of Spain celebrates a Solemn Eucharist with Mendes as chief celebrant. This will be followed by Pantin's entombment in the Cathedral crypt below the sacristy to the southwestern end of the altar.

A condolence book will be opened at Archbishop's House today to Thursday from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m.


Another Article at the National Library website gives us some more insight:

Fr. Pereira and workmen descended eight stone stops into a stifling, dimly lit room, measuring ten by 15 feet.

There they found two caskets, one of zinc and badly deteriorated, the other of lead and still intact. The caskets are thought to contain the remains of the fifth and sixth archbishops of Port of Spain: Patrick Vincent Flood, in office till 1907, and John Pius Dowling, who died in 1940.

Only two coffins were found then, so it seems it will be necessary to break through the walls of the crypt to find the other tombs beneath the cathedral.

Priests and church officials, others than archbishops may have been interred beneath the cathedral as well.

Before Port of Spain became an archdiocese, run by an archbishop, in 1851, a number of bishops were in charge.

Those buried in the crypt could include James Bukley, bishop till 1828; Daniel McDonnell, bishop till 1844; Guillaume le Goff, cure till his death in 1855; Michael Monaghan, apostolic administrator till 1855; James Etheridge, apostolic administrator till 1861; Abbe Francois Cuenat, apostolic administrator till 1869; William O'Carroll, coadjutor till 1884; and George Vincent King, coadjutor till 1886.



Archbishop Pantin always said "It is all God's work" - 2 Cor 5:18.

He touched many lives and lived up to his motto: “Omnia Omnibus,” All things to All!

At his passing the headline of the front page of the Catholic News issue of Sunday, March 19, 2000 read: “We Remember How You Loved Us”.


Below is the Episcopal Lineage / Apostolic Succession for Archbishop Pantin.
• Archbishop Gordon Anthony Pantin, C.S.Sp. † (1968)
• Archbishop Marie-Joseph Lemieux, O.P. † (1936)
• Paolo Cardinal Marella † (1933)
• Pietro Cardinal Fumasoni Biondi † (1916)
• Domenico Cardinal Serafini, O.S.B. † (1900)
• Serafino Cardinal Vannutelli † (1869)
• Costantino Cardinal Patrizi Naro † (1828)
• Father Carlo Odescalchi, S.J. † (1823)
• Giulio Maria Cardinal della Somaglia † (1788)
• Hyacinthe-Sigismond Cardinal Gerdil, B. † (1777)
• Marcantonio Cardinal Colonna (Jr.) † (1762)
• Pope Carlo della Torre Rezzonico † (1743)
• Pope Prospero Lorenzo Lambertini † (1724)
• Pope Pietro Francesco (Vincenzo Maria) Orsini de Gravina, O.P. † (1675)
• Paluzzo Cardinal Paluzzi Altieri Degli Albertoni † (1666)
• Ulderico Cardinal Carpegna † (1630)
• Luigi Cardinal Caetani † (1622)
• Ludovico Cardinal Ludovisi † (1621)
• Archbishop Galeazzo Sanvitale † (1604)
• Girolamo Cardinal Bernerio, O.P. † (1586)
• Giulio Antonio Cardinal Santorio † (1566)
• Scipione Cardinal Rebiba †

Sunday, 16 October 2011

Archbishop Count Finbar Ryan of Port of Spain



Count Finbar Ryan - 7th Archbishop of Port of Spain

1881 (4 Mar) - Born Cork, Ireland
1905 (8 Apr) - Ordained Priest Priest of Order of Friars Preachers
1930 to 1934 - Provincial of the Irish Dominican Province
1937 (13 Apr)- Appointed Coadjutor Archbishop of Port of Spain,
1937 (13 Apr)- Appointed Titular Archbishop of Gabula
1937 (29 Jun)- Ordained Bishop Titular Archbishop of Gabula
1940 (6 jun) - Succeeded Archbishop of Port of Spain
1958 to 1967 - President - Antilles Episcopal Conference
1962 to 1965 - Second Vatican Council Council Father (Sessions 1,2,3,& 4)
1966 (24 May)- Retired Archbishop of Port of Spain
1966 (24 May)- Appointed Titular Archbishop of Villamagna in Tripolitana
1975 (10 Jan)- Died Archbishop Emeritus of Port of Spain

1937 Awarded the "Freedom of Cork City"
1939 Published book - Our Lady of Fatima
1950 Appointed an assistant to the pontifical throne, a papal count and A grand officer of the supreme order of Christ.
1962 Highest religious official at the Independence Celebrations for Trinidad and Tobago.
1969 Awarded the Trinity Cross - the highest award to a Trinidadian.

According to Dr Bernard Tappin:
Finbar Ryan, O.P became Archbishop of Port of Spain in 1940. When he assumed office, Ryan already had a long and distinguished career in the church in Ireland. He was not a young archbishop, but he was destined to govern the church during 26 exciting years in the country’s and church’s history. Ryan witnessed Trinidad ’s political emergence as an independent country and he had the honour of being the first religious leader to bless the nation, minutes after the National Flag was raised on the first Independence Day 31st August 1962. The Archbishop was also present at the sessions of Vatican Council II in Rome (1963-1965).

As Archbishop of Port-of-Spain, he saw the church grow in the Caribbean. He celebrated the centenary of the Archdiocese in December 1950, with days of celebrations. In 1956, St Lucia and Grenada became separate dioceses. On 10th December 1957, the Antilles Episcopal Conference was born, one of the first in the church worldwide. The vast majority were only established in the wake of Vatican II. In December 1958, Ryan consecrated his Vicar-General, William Michael Fitzgerald O.P., as his auxiliary.

Ryan will forever be remembered as the founder of the Seminary of St. John Vianney and the Uganda Martyrs. As early as 1819, Rome proposed the foundation of a seminary, but it was on 19th January 1943, that Ryan blessed the seminary building then housed within the monastic compound of Mt St Benedict. The monks assumed responsibility for the seminary. In 1961, the seminary was transferred to its present site.

Ryan also stands out for his determined advancement of Catholic education. Not only were primary schools built and renovated, Ryan was responsible for the rapid growth of Catholic secondary education in Trinidad. He invited to Trinidad the Presentation Brothers (1946) and the Holy Faith Sisters (1947) with this in mind. He encouraged the Holy Ghost Fathers to open Fatima College (1945). His own Dominican Fathers opened Holy Cross College in 1957. The parishes of St Joseph and Tunapuna had their own colleges, St. Joseph ’s College and St. Charles. The Dominican Sisters opened St. Dominic’s in Barataria. The church was the effective pioneer in the spread of secondary education in the years after World War II. Above all, Ryan sought to make his church strong and he stood ready to defend against all-comers.

In 1950, the Archdiocese celebrated it's centenary. The words expressed by Finbar Ryan of that occasion remain applicable today as it was in 1950:

To those who join us in this celebration we say: Salvete.
For our dead: Requiescant.
For the archdiocese: Vivat, crescat, floreat!



The Catholic Herald of the UK published the following article on the appointment of Finbar Ryan as Archbishop of Port of Spain on 23rd April 1937

The Holy See has appointed the Very Rev. Finbar Ryan, 0.P., of Cork, to be Coadjutor to the Archbishop of Port of Spain, Trinidad, the Most Rev. John Pius Dowling, 0.P., S.T.M. Dr. Dowling, consecrated in 1909, is now in his seventyseventh year. His diocesan territory embraces not only the whole of Trinidad, but also the islands of Tobago, Grenada, the Grenadines, St. Vincent and St. Lucia.

The Bishop-Designate is a widely-known Irish Dominican who from 1921 until 1926, and again in 1930-4, was Provincial of the Irish Dominican Province. For many years he edited the Irish Rosary. He is a much-travelled man. Europe, the United States, the Antipodes, and the West Indies to which he now returns: all alike he has visited. Fr. Finbar is brother to Sir Andrew Ryan, K.B.E., British Minister to Albania. and Miss Mary Ryan, M.A., Professor of Romance Languages at University College, Cork.


FREEDOM OF CORK: On June 22nd, 1937 he was awarded "The freedom of Cork City" in recognition of the great honour bestowed on him by his Holiness the Pope on appointing him coadjutor Archbishop of Port-of-Spain and Archbishop of Gubula (Conferred 5th October, 1937).
The "Freedom of the City" is an award whereby persons distinguished for public service become Honorary Burgesses of the City.

TRINITY CROSS: Finbar Ryan (His Excellency Count) - O.P. in the sphere of religion as he was the then Archbishop of Port of Spain. Was one of the first recipients of the Trinity Cross. The Trinity Cross was the highest National Award in the twin island Republic. On June 5, 2008 the Trinity Cross was replaced by the Order of the Republic of Trinidad and Tobago. The Trinity Cross was granted to nationals and non-nationals of Trinidad and Tobago who portrayed distinguished and outstanding service to Trinidad and Tobago. It is also awarded for gallantry in the face of the enemy, or for gallant conduct. The identifying colour on the Borders of Ribbons for this medal is gold.

OUR LADY OF FATIMA PUBLISHED: In 1939 the book "Our Lady of Fatima" was first published, written by Count Finbar Ryan. Several editions were published. The following extract from a book by John M Haffert speaks of "Our lady of Fatima":
In 1941, following the first success of the book, the author by John M. Haffert told the story of how it had all come about in a sequel titled From a Morning Prayer.

This second book told how a saintly Carmelite lay-brother, after what he thought was a vision, commissioned the author to make the Scapular devotion better known, and especially the practice of using the Scapular while making the Morning Offering (to emphasize the offering through the Immaculate Heart of Mary). . . carrying the offering through the day, in all our sacrifices, thoughts and deeds . . . walking always under the mantle of Mary and thus doing all, as She did on earth, for God and for the Reign of Christ in all hearts.

A few months after this second book was published Archbishop Finbar Ryan, of Trinidad, wrote a letter to the writer, congratulating him, and adding: "While I congratulate you on this book, From a Morning Prayer, I cannot help wondering why you have made no mention of OUR LADY OF FATIMA . . . since in the last apparition at Fatima Our Lady held the Brown Scapular in Her hands."

The author, like most people in the United States at that time, had heard only vague rumors about Our Lady of Fatima.

It happened that Archbishop Ryan had written the first book in the English language on the Fatima apparitions. It had just come off the press in Dublin and the copy which he then sent to the present writer opened a whole new view of Our Lady's role in the modern world.


STEEL PAN IN CHURCH: Archbishop Finbar Ryan allowed pan to be played in church and the Cathedral. Until the church accepted pan it was not considered. Martin Douglas, the leader of Brooklyn-based Crossfire Steel Orchestra speaks of his experience:
An additional impetus was that the renowned Marionettes Chorale sang with North Stars... The Marionettes went on to record the hymn Hear O Lord with the Dixeland Steel Orchestra. People began to explain "oh what a beautiful song." In this way, pan began to be somewhat accepted and was winning "hearts and minds" of the Trinidad society, who previously had it pegged as "evil".


CALL HIM COUNT: In 1950 Finbar Ryan was appointed an assistant to the pontifical throne, a papal count and A grand officer of the supreme order of Christ.

A BOOK ABOUT FINBAR RYAN: Father Allan Ventour wrote of the late Archbishop. The book was entitled:

Finbar Ryan, Archbishop of Port of Spain and
Eric Williams, Father of Trinidad and Tobago:

the struggle between a fierce ultramontanist
and a determined nationalist 1954-1966


Finbar Ryan resigned as Archbishop of Port of Spain in 1966.
He died in 1975.


Episcopal Lineage / Apostolic Succession for Count Finbar Ryan:

Archbishop Patrick Finbar Ryan, O.P. † (1937)
Archbishop Paschal Charles Robinson, O.F.M. † (1927)
Willem Marinus Cardinal van Rossum, C.SS.R. † (1918)
Pope Giacomo della Chiesa † (1907)
Pope St. Giuseppe Melchiorre Sarto † (1884)
Lucido Maria Cardinal Parocchi † (1871)
Costantino Cardinal Patrizi Naro † (1828)
Father Carlo Odescalchi, S.J. † (1823)
Giulio Maria Cardinal della Somaglia † (1788)
Hyacinthe-Sigismond Cardinal Gerdil, B. † (1777)
Marcantonio Cardinal Colonna (Jr.) † (1762)
Pope Carlo della Torre Rezzonico † (1743)
Pope Prospero Lorenzo Lambertini † (1724)
Pope Pietro Francesco (Vincenzo Maria) Orsini de Gravina, O.P. † (1675)
Paluzzo Cardinal Paluzzi Altieri Degli Albertoni † (1666)
Ulderico Cardinal Carpegna † (1630)
Luigi Cardinal Caetani † (1622)
Ludovico Cardinal Ludovisi † (1621)
Archbishop Galeazzo Sanvitale † (1604)
Girolamo Cardinal Bernerio, O.P. † (1586)
Giulio Antonio Cardinal Santorio † (1566)
Scipione Cardinal Rebiba †

Thursday, 13 October 2011

John Pius Dowling - Archbishop of Port of Spain



John Pius Dowling OP - 6th Archbishop of Port of Spain
Born - 23 June 1860 (Freshford, Ireland)
Died - 6 June 1940

4 Jun 1887 - Ordained Priest of Order of Friars Preachers
9 Mar 1909 - Appointed Archbishop of Port of Spain,


John Pius Dowling, O.P., ran the archdiocese for 31 years from 1909 to 1940. He nurtured an increase in the number of religious orders to serve Trinidad . He welcomed Spanish Augustinians - the Recollect Hermits of St Augustine - who were placed in charge of a number of rural parishes where there were many Spanish speakers. In 1911, Dom Mayeul de Caigny, O.S.B., sought entry into the Archdiocese in the light of political pressures in Bahia , Brazil . A year later the first monks arrived to found the Abbey of Our Lady in Exile at Mt. St Benedict . In 1919, Dowling welcomed from England to the Archdiocese, the newly established Corpus Christi Carmelites. They were destined to do critical social work for the local church in the years to follow.

Dowling’s most difficult moments as archbishop were during the years 1926 to 1932 when he fought tenaciously but unsuccessfully against the introduction of Divorce legislation into the colony. In 1931, he presented yet another Solemn Protest to the Governor, Claud Hollis, signed also by the Anglican Bishop, Arthur Anstey, the Kazi of the Islamic faith and many Hindu pundits. On 22nd March 1931, Dowling addressed a mass protest rally at the Savannah along with Anglican, Hindu and Labour Leaders. The church was painted as being reactionary; divorce was seen as a “progressive” bit of social legislation. The government won the day.


The following is this Archbishops Episcopal Lineage:

Archbishop John Pius Dowling, O.P. † (1909)
Archbishop William Joseph Walsh † (1885)
Patrick Francis Cardinal Moran † (1872)
Paul Cardinal Cullen † (1850)
Castruccio Cardinal Castracane degli Antelminelli † (1844)
Pope Bartolomeo Alberto (Mauro) Cappellari, O.S.B. † (1831)
Bartolomeo Cardinal Pacca † (1786)
Giovanni Carlo Cardinal Boschi † (1760)
Pope Carlo della Torre Rezzonico † (1743)
Pope Prospero Lorenzo Lambertini † (1724)
Pope Pietro Francesco (Vincenzo Maria) Orsini de Gravina, O.P. † (1675)
Paluzzo Cardinal Paluzzi Altieri Degli Albertoni † (1666)
Ulderico Cardinal Carpegna † (1630)
Luigi Cardinal Caetani † (1622)
Ludovico Cardinal Ludovisi † (1621)
Archbishop Galeazzo Sanvitale † (1604)
Girolamo Cardinal Bernerio, O.P. † (1586)
Giulio Antonio Cardinal Santorio † (1566)
Scipione Cardinal Rebiba †


Ref Bernard Tappin
Ref Catholic Hierarchy

Patrick Vincent Flood - Archbishop of Port of Spain



Patrick Vincent Flood OP - 5th Archbishop Port of Spain

Born - 16 Sep 1844 (Lagan, Ireland)
Died - 17 May 1907

7 Jul 1887 - Appointed Coadjutor Bishop of Port of Spain, Trinidad & Tobago,
7 Jul 1887 - Appointed Titular Bishop of Hephaestus


Patrick Vincent Flood, O.P. He was the first of the Irish Dominicans to govern the see of Port-of-Spain. His appointment signaled a new era. In 1897, the Irish Dominican fathers replaced those from the Province of Lyons, France in staffing the archdiocese, following the departure of the Superior , Fr. Hilaire Arnaud. The long-standing battle between the French and English elements in the society was abating. The church could no longer continue to allow itself to be viewed as “foreign”.

Archbishop Flood’s episcopacy stands out for his unflinching support for Catholic education at the primary school level. In 1890, discussions were renewed concerning the dual system. There was again widespread support for a secular system of education. Flood was adamant about his church’s position. He won the day. A new ordinance was passed giving church primary schools increased financial support from the government. The dual system was maintained, with the government very generous with its support.

By 1903, the Catholic Church ran the largest number of schools, 72, with a student population of 11,286. The government had 51 schools with 8,731 pupils, the Anglicans ran 48 primary schools and 8,831 pupils and the Presbyterians 50 schools with 5,200 on roll. The long battle for church schools had borne fruit; the church treasured its schools established throughout the colony.

Before Flood died in 1907, he moved into the Archbishop’s House, built in 1904 in St. Clair. Flood himself designed the residence. Previously, the archbishops lived in a residence on the grounds of St. Joseph ’s Convent.

The Following Plaque was erected in honour of the Formr Archbishop Flood


Ref Bernard Tappin
Ref Catholic Hierarchy

Wednesday, 12 October 2011

Joachim Hyacinth Gonin - Archbishop of Port of Spain



Joachim-Hyacinth Gonin, O.P.- 4th Archbishop of Port of Spain (appointed 21 Dec 1863)
Born 14 Dec 1815 (Bourgouin, France)
Died 13 Mar 1889

Joachim Gonin, O.P. as 4th Archbishop of Port-of-Spain ushered in a period of growth and consolidation. His tenure lasted twenty-six years (1863-1889). His appointment satisfied the wishes of the contending power brokers in colonial Trinidad . Born in France , he grew up in Mauritius , a British colony in the Indian Ocean . French in culture, Gonin was above all a British subject. He was also a Religious, a Dominican Father.

Gonin’s arrival in 1864 with a party of six young Dominicans was a critical development for the church in Trinidad . The church would now be assured of an adequate supply of clergy to man the increasing number of parishes.

The Dominican Order was further entrenched with the arrival in 1868 of sisters of the Congregation of St. Catherine of Siena of Etrepagny, France, who came to take charge of the leprosarium at Cocorite. The Order’s presence was completed in May 1874, with the coming of the contemplative nuns from Venezuela . They fled their Dominican Monastery in Caracas during the persecutions of the President, Guzman Blanco.

The archdiocese was not only a stronghold of the Dominican Order. The Holy Ghost fathers arrived in 1863 to administer St. Mary’s College. The Cluny Sisters were also in an expansionist mood during Gonin’s time. In 1866, Providence was established. Convents were founded in St Joseph (1870), San Fernando (1882) and Arima (1885). The Good Shepherd Sisters of Angers arrived in 1890. Richard Rawle, first Anglican Bishop of Trinidad (1872) commented: “The Roman Church has Dominicans and sisters and all kinds of organised help”.

During Gonin’s episcopacy, there was a “rapprochement” between the church and the colonial officials. Governor Arthur Gordon nurtured the easing of tensions as colonial policy. The once vexing issue of the primacy of the Anglican Church was resolved by its dis-establishment in 1872.

The church won an even more significant battle for it’s continuing role in education when the Keenan Report (1869) recommended that church schools be granted state aid under certain conditions. The dual system of primary education subsequently came into effect (1870). The colonial government sought the church’s help in furthering its work in education and welfare. In 1868, Gordon got Gonin to bring the Dominican sisters to care for the lepers. His successor, Henry Turner Irving in 1878 offered Gonin government funding if the church undertook the responsibility of finding a suitable religious order to run a reformatory. In 1890 the Girls Reformatory was opened, run by the Good Shepherd Sisters of Angers.

Archbishop Gonin laid the cornerstone for Sacred Heart Church. The Church was built specifically for Mass in English - The Cathedral and many other churches had mass in Latin or French.

Below is the Episcopal Lineage of Archbishop Gonin:

Archbishop Joachim-Hyacinthe Gonin, O.P. † (1863)
Costantino Cardinal Patrizi Naro † (1828)
Father Carlo Odescalchi, S.J. † (1823)
Giulio Maria Cardinal della Somaglia † (1788)
Hyacinthe-Sigismond Cardinal Gerdil, B. † (1777)
Marcantonio Cardinal Colonna (Jr.) † (1762)
Pope Carlo della Torre Rezzonico † (1743)http://www.blogger.com/img/blank.gif
Pope Prospero Lorenzo Lambertini † (1724)http://www.blogger.com/img/blank.gif
Pope Pietro Francesco (Vincenzo Maria) Orsini de Gravina, O.P. † (1675)
Paluzzo Cardinal Paluzzi Altieri Degli Albertoni † (1666)
Ulderico Cardinal Carpegna † (1630)
Luigi Cardinal Caetani † (1622)
Ludovico Cardinal Ludovisi † (1621)
Archbishop Galeazzo Sanvitale † (1604)
Girolamo Cardinal Bernerio, O.P. † (1586)
Giulio Antonio Cardinal Santorio † (1566)
Scipione Cardinal Rebiba †

Ref Bernard Tappin
Ref Catholic Hierarchy

Ferdinand English - Archbishop of Portof Spain



Ferdinand English - 3rd Archbishop of Port of Spain (appointed 28th Sept 1860)
born 1821
Died 19 September 1862

After the "fight" between Archbishop Spaccapietra and Governor Elliot, there was need for the church to mend its fences with the colonial authorities. The new archbishop was an Englishman, aptly named Ferdinand English, a canon from the Diocese of Clifton. Rome reported his appointment to London in good time. English arrived in Trinidad in 1861.

In September 1862 he died during a pastoral visit to Grenada .

Archbishop English will be remembered for his initial efforts in bringing the Holy Ghost Fathers to Trinidad to establish St. Mary’s College. The “old” Catholic St. George’s College had failed and the Protestant English elite had their needs met with the establishment in 1857 of the Queen’s Collegiate School , sponsored by the colonial regime.

English was the founder of the Catholic Press with the establishment of the Catholic newspaper, the Star of the West, in 1862.

Below is the Episcopal Lineage for Archbishop Ferdinand English:

Archbishop Ferdinand English † (1860)
Bishop William Hugh Joseph Clifford † (1857)
Pope Bl. Giovanni Maria Mastai-Ferretti † (1827)
Pope Francesco Saverio Maria Felice Castiglioni † (1800)
Giuseppe Maria Cardinal Doria Pamphilj † (1773)
Buenaventura Cardinal Córdoba Espinosa de la Cerda † (1761)
Archbishop Manuel Quintano Bonifaz † (1749)
Enrique Cardinal Enríquez † (1743)http://www.blogger.com/img/blank.gif
Pope Prospero Lorenzo Lambertini † (1724)http://www.blogger.com/img/blank.gif
Pope Pietro Francesco (Vincenzo Maria) Orsini de Gravina, O.P. † (1675)
Paluzzo Cardinal Paluzzi Altieri Degli Albertoni † (1666)
Ulderico Cardinal Carpegna † (1630)
Luigi Cardinal Caetani † (1622)
Ludovico Cardinal Ludovisi † (1621)
Archbishop Galeazzo Sanvitale † (1604)
Girolamo Cardinal Bernerio, O.P. † (1586)
Giulio Antonio Cardinal Santorio † (1566)
Scipione Cardinal Rebiba †

Refer Bernard Tappin
Refer Catholic Hierarchy

Catholic League launches new Website

Catholic League president Bill Donohue announces today the league’s revamped website, www.catholicleague.org [click here]:

Visitors to the new website will notice a fresh, modern look complete with pictures and graphics. We have answered the requests of many who would like to share Catholic League news releases and articles on their Facebook and Twitter pages. We have also set up direct links to the official Twitter, Facebook and YouTube pages of the Catholic League: eliminating the confusion caused by some poser groups. Visitors can also subscribe to an RSS feed allowing them to receive Catholic League information straight to their desktop or portable device. We have also improved the website’s search engine and site navigation. Both of these features are indispensible tools for researchers.

Over the years we have used our website to launch many successful campaigns, thus we recognize the importance of a prominent web presence. Our new website gives us another tool to do what we do best: combating anti-Catholicism.

Monday, 10 October 2011

Vincent Spaccapietra Archbishop of Port of Spain



Vincent Spaccapietra -
born 12 October 1801
died 24 November 1878

21 Nov 1852 Appointed Titular Archbishop of Arcadiopolis in Europa
18 Apr 1855 Appointed Archbishop of Port of Spain, Trinidad and Tobago, Antilles
12 Sep 1859 Resigned Archbishop of Port of Spain, Trinidad and Tobago, Antilles
12 Sep 1859 Appointed Titular Archbishop of Ancyra
1862 Appointed Archbishop of Izmir (Smirne), Turkey

Vincent Spaccapietra was directed by Rome to take up the position of Archbishop with the sudden death of the previous Archbishop in 1852. He was the first non - British subject to head the church in Trinidad ; Spaccapietra was an Italian from the Kingdom of the Two Sicilies. The manner of his appointment aggravated the relations between himself and the Governor, Charles Elliot. The colonial office in London had not been informed by Rome of the appointment of Spaccapietra. Prior to the creation of the Archdiocese, there was always a ready flow of correspondence between the church and London . Once the archdiocese was formed, it was the opinion of Rome that there was no longer any need to communicate with the colonial authorities. Rome dealt directly with the archdiocese.

Governor Elliot refused to recognise the new archbishop. The archbishop, a hero of the cholera epidemic of that year, had tried valiantly to help the sick and destitute, even constructing the convalescent home, L’Hospice, to give refuge to the homeless, But Sir Clive Elliott was adamant that this Catholic figure, who was not a British national, should not get paid out of the colonial chest.

Leaders among the Catholic party sprang to the defence of their church and archbishop. Rome sent Monsignor Talbot to diffuse the situation in December 1855 and to assure the Governor that no slight was intended to the colonial government. Elliott was unrelenting, and in fact resigned over the dispute.

Given the continued strained relations, it was no surprise that Spaccapietra resigned as Archbishop, assuming a new post in 1859 as Archbishop of Smyrna.

During his short term in office, Spaccapietra carved for himself a monumental role among the archbishops of Port-of-Spain. He effectively established the church’s social out-reach to the less fortunate. He established the Les Amantes de Jesus Society, the St. Vincent de Paul Society (1857) and the L’hospice Spaccapietra (1858). These organisations have all stood the test of time and exist even today.

Spaccapietra was a Council Father for the First Vatican Council.


Refer this link

Richard Patrick Smith - Archbishop of Port of Spain



In 1819 a Vicariate Apostolic was established in Port of Spain. Richard Patrick Smith (1844-1850) was the third Vicar Apostolic having jurisdiction over the church in Trinidad as well as the other British and Danish colonies in the West Indies. He followed James Buckley (1820-1828) and James McDonnell (1829-1844)

Smith took control of a Vicariate in Crisis. In 1844 when the Anglican Church - the religion of the minority in Trinidad was Established. The Catholic Church was relegated officially and legally to a position of secondary importance.

On 30th April, 1850 Pope Pius IX transformed the Vicariate into the Archdiocese of Port-of-Spain with jurisdiction over St. Lucia , St. Vincent , Grenada and Tobago and with Roseau , Dominica as its suffragan see.

In 1850, the catholic population of Trinidad stood at 44,000 out of a total of 70,000 persons. There were sixteen parishes served by twenty resident priests, with thirteen primary schools along with St. Joseph ’s Convent, Port-of-Spain (1836) and St. George’s College (1838). The church’s new status was of added significance as it was made months before the hierarchy was restored in England on 24th September 1850. Indeed the Church of Port-of-Spain lays claim to be one of the oldest in the English-speaking world.

On 9th February 1851, Smith was installed as first Archbishop of Port-of-Spain with a moving ceremony at his cathedral. He publicly discharged his new authority on 16th February 1851, when he consecrated his Vicar-General, Michael Monaghan as Bishop of Roseau. On Friday 19th February, Smith began three days of liturgical celebrations marking the consecration of the cathedral; its foundation stone had been previously laid by Governor Woodford on 25th March 1816. The Cathedral enjoyed the privileges of a Minor Basilica.

Later that year, special jubilee functions were held, culminating with the erection of a cross at Laventille on 15th August. Smith used these occasions to demonstrate the Catholic Church’s new status. The church remained a leading institution in British colonial Trinidad .

When the Archdiocese was created in 1850, Trinidad was becoming an even more complex colonial society, with the arrival of varying numbers of migrants from neighbouring West Indian islands and Venezuela , Africa, Madeira and China . The Indian Immigration scheme was becoming entrenched, adding a totally new religious dimension to the colony, as these migrants were Hindus and followers of Islam. There was need for the British to stamp their authority, institutions, language and religion on the colony - the anglicisation policy was in its hey-day.

The Catholic Church was often regarded in official government circles as being a “foreign church”; the church was very French in character. It drew its staunchest support from the influential French Creole elite; many adherents also came from the French Patois-speaking ex-slaves. Moreover, many priests were French, who as a rule preached in the language.

The years following the creation of the Archdiocese continued to witness antagonisms between the colonial government and the Catholic Church.

Smith died in 1852.

A Plaque was later dedicated to him, James Buckley and Daniel McDonnell (The three Vicar Apostolics) in the Cathedral. It is in Latin - the International language of the Church.



Ref this link

Sunday, 9 October 2011

Grenada Catholic Cathedral gets new clock

Here is some good news from the Catholic Newspaper of the Archdiocese of Port of Spain: Clocks are being placed in the tower of the Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception, St George’s, Grenada.






When the cathedral tower was being extended in the 1920s, circular open spaces were left so that clocks could be installed. After 86 years three clocks are being fitted into those spaces. The person responsible for constructing and installing the most recent clock was Mario Skocic, a Croatian national who came to Grenada three years ago.

Mario set up his small workshop in the crypt of the cathedral and fabricated the clock faces from fiberglass, and the hands from aluminum. The movement of the hands along with the ringing of the bells are controlled by a microprocessor and master clock located in the sacristy. The clocks are accurate, guaranteed not to lose or gain more than one minute over a one-year period.

Skocic, who has degrees in physical education and electronics, is a man of many skills. His love of boating led him to acquire skills in working with fiberglass but his real love is church bells. “They are the voice of God, reminding us of His loving presence and calling us to prayer.”

Mario says the three bells in the cathedral tower are of exceptional quality and the original framework supporting them is in excellent condition. The sound of the bells and the time on the clocks will speak to the citizens of St George’s and visitors of the passing of time and the nearness of “Christ, yesterday, today and forever.” – Catholic Focus

Gay ‘marriage’ in high demand? Not according to the U.S. census

I could not find the statistics that this guy speaks of...

The 0.2% Solution
Crunching the Same-Sex Numbers
By: Chuck Colson
Published: October 4, 2011 7:57 AM
From breakpoint.org

The pressure to redefine marriage to include same-sex couples keeps increasing. The impression is given that thousands upon thousands of gays and lesbians are unable to do the one thing they want to do more than anything else: That is, have a wedding.

As if to prove the point, the US Census Bureau announced that it would be counting same-sex households in the 2010 Census. In August the Bureau announced that there are nearly a million. I was surprised by the small number.

But this past week, they reduced their estimate of same sex couple households by nearly thirty percent. In fact, it turns out that there are fewer than 650,000. That’s about six tenths of one percent of total US households.

But an even greater shocker for me was the number of same-sex married households. Gay marriage is legal in six jurisdictions. In Massachusetts, it’s been the law since 2004. Same-sex couples can get married, for example, in Massachusetts and Washington, DC, and live anywhere because nobody’s enforcing DOMA anymore in view of litigation. And yet there are only 131,729 households headed by married same-sex couples. That’s two-tenths of one percent of married households. Talk about the tail wagging the dog!

This census data exposes the two biggest myths created about gay marriage.

The first is that there’s a huge demand for it. No way! In fact, there’s hardly any demand at all. Gay couples are not lined up at city halls hoping for a marriage license.

The second myth is the so-called “marriage equity” argument: That this is just another the civil rights movement. Are you going to tell me that it was possible to fuel the civil rights movement with 646,000 couples, when only 131,000 had a real stake in it? It’s laughable.

I have never believed that gays wanted to marry. Their behavior by its very nature is too promiscuous. Gay relationships are for the most part sexually open rather than exclusive.

For us to redefine marriage thereby altering thousands of years of human history, ignoring all of the benefits marriage offers to individuals, cultures, civilizations and — above all — children, for the sake of 646,000 same-sex households only 131,000 of which are married, it’s madness.

Gays and lesbians don’t want marriage; they want their sexual choices affirmed as normal and moral. And that’s what’s behind the blacklisting, boycotting, and suing anybody who even questions homosexuality. They don’t want anyone telling them that how they live is morally problematic. Gays are actively trying to destroy marriage and will take away our freedom of speech and religion in order to do it.
Does this take the church off the hook? No. For years we have helped deconstruct marriage, winking at cohabitation and allowing easy divorce. We’ve allowed politicians to pass bad divorce laws and to loosen the moral standards surrounding marriage. Now it’s all coming back to haunt us. But our job is to rebuild marriage as a sacred institution and to stand our ground and defend it, come what may, from what appears to be a small, tiny, minority.

Obama Vs Religion

On Thursday 6th October the Catholic League released the following article. For those who don't know about "ministerial exception". It is a de-facto law of the United States intended to protect the freedom of religion, which exempts that religious institutions from anti-discrimination laws in hiring employees. For example, the US government cannot force the Catholic church to hire homosexual or female priests:

Yesterday, the U.S. Supreme Court heard arguments on a case that involves the "ministerial exception," a provision that bars the government from making employment decisions regarding a church's ministers. The position articulated by Leondra R. Kruger, who represented the Obama administration, was the subject of a revealing series of exchanges with the Justices.

After Kruger dodged a pointed question by Chief Justice John Roberts on the specific religious nature of the case—all she would allow was that associational rights were involved—Justice Antonin Scalia pressed her even further: "That's extraordinary. That's extraordinary. We are talking here about the Free Exercise Clause and about the Establishment Clause, and you say they have no special application?"

Later, Supreme Court Justice Elena Kagan asked Kruger about this same issue. When Kruger indicated that the "ministerial exception" was not grounded in the First Amendment, Kagan, citing Scalia's concern, said "I too find that amazing, that you think that the Free—neither the Free Exercise Clause nor the Establishment Clause has anything to say about a church's relationship with its own employees."

Catholic League president Bill Donohue comments as follows:

Jesus selected only males to be his apostles. Following suit, the Catholic Church selects only males to be its priests. No one has ever questioned this First Amendment right, until now: the Obama administration wants to gut the "ministerial exception" that allows religious institutions to exercise autonomy in its employment decisions.

What happened yesterday is the icing on the cake: after lying to the American people that Obamacare would not threaten the religious prerogatives of the Catholic Church—it now wants to force Catholic healthcare providers to offer sterilization and contraceptive services (abortion will be next)—it says the government should not be barred from policing the hiring policies of any church. Thus has Obama taken the culture war to new extremes.

Monday, 3 October 2011

Art Auction to Raise funds for the restoration of The Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception in Port of Spain a success.

Well, I missed the Art Sale to raise funds for the Renovation of the Cathedral. I am reliably informed that of the 128 pieces 49 were not sold. The good thing was that if 49 were not sold then 79 were sold. Great job guys!

Below, Father Kenneth Assing, The Administrator of the Cathedral views what may be a Kenderson Noray work.

Sunday, 2 October 2011

Feast of the Guardian Angels

Today (October 2nd) is the feast of the Guardian Angels.

The painting above is known as Heilige Schutzengel by Lindberg. Heilige Schutzengel is German for Holy Guardian Angel, it is known in English as the Guardian Angel, Angel and Bridge, Angel at the Bridge & etc. It is an extremely popular image with many, many variations back at least to Victorian times


GUARDIAN ANGEL PRAYER
for Feast day of October 2nd)

Dear Angel at my side,
my good and loyal friend,
you have been with me since the moment I was born.
You are my own personal guardian,
given me by God as my guide and protector,
and you will stay with me till I die.
He who created you and me
gave me to you as your particular charge.
You assisted in great joy at my baptism,
when I became part of the Mystical Body of Christ,
and was made a member of the household of God
and an heir of heaven.
You saw the dangers that beset my path,
and, if I sinned,
it was in spite of you.
You envied me when Christ came to me in Holy Communion.
Even though you probably were there
among the angels that adored Him
the night that He was born,
you have not been able to receive Him as I can.
O, help me to appreciate these gifts!
Help me to realize, as you do,
with every fiber of my being,
that to serve Christ is to be a King!
Help me steadfastly to avoid evil
and do good and always guard my soul from sin.
Protect me as well from physical evils
as I go about my daily work.
You will be with me all my life,
and at the hour of my death.
Help me to face death bravely, patiently,
with great love of God,
knowing that it is only through death
that I can come to Him in heaven!
Then, come with me to my Judge,
and when the hour of my salvation comes,
take me home to my Father, God.

Amen