Reflection by Claude Mostowik msc on the Feast Day of Edmund Rice 2018
One description of Pope Francis’ papacy has been that of a ministry of gestures. Where John Paul II was a philosopher/poet and Benedict XVI the strict academician/theologian, Francis evangelises the culture and touches people’s hearts by the way of beauty where many have been captivated by stirring images of an approachable churchman — hugging children, kissing disfigured individuals, washing the feet of women and convicted persons on Holy Thursday – crucially outside St Peter’s.Read more
Romans 12:2ff: ‘Don’t change yourselves to be like the people of this world, but let God change you inside with a new way of thinking……….’ We can and must rearrange our priorities….
How do we want to remember ANZAC or any war? To suggest changes in the way we think about Anzac is dangerous territory. The contemporary focus on this sacred day is changing from an inherent opposition to militarism since the 1920’s to a sudden reinvigoration of ANZAC which seems to contribute to a new militarism and nationalism. Whatever this day means, we must recognise that we are all part of ‘the dark ecosystem of violence’ – whether towards Aboriginal people, refugees, asylum seekers, the Earth or peoples we have never met.
Listening to the news, it would seem that religion is more often used as a pretext for violence than peace. But, the Scriptures and our faith traditions contain a strong mandate for compassion and peace. Together they offer a radical reshaping of human relations if we accept them.Read more
We gather today to seek to be together, to acknowledge, stand in solidarity with, give voice to, to cry out – in anguish, pain, frustration, anger and great sadness. We are here to lament. Lament is looking to the future and trying to find hope but it requires a truth telling where we need to speak the unspeakable and find words in traumatised numbness. It demands that the truth be told; that it be heard and received. It is a catalyst to examine responsibility and complicity. Truth telling causes us to remain alert, to educate and help prevent new victimisation and finding ways for healing, offer restitution, promote restoration of those unjustly treated and work for justice. Pope Francis has said: ‘The thing the church needs more today is the ability to heal wounds…and you have to start from the ground up.’
Edmund Rice Retreat and Conference Centre, Mulgoa - 8 April 2018
Most Sunday mornings I listen to Ockham’s Razor on ABC Radio National. The razor here has to do with shaving – not beards but the superfluous from logic and design. William of Ockham, the 14th century Franciscan, held that to explain things was to ‘Keep it simple.’ Though religion can be obsessed with obfuscation rather than simplification, Jesus condenses religious observance down to one commandment: ‘This is my commandment, that you love one another as I have loved you’.Read more