Monday, November 30, 2009
Thursday, November 26, 2009
We lost an archbishop to depression. Mental illness is insidious and needs to be battled, and these people are doing a good job of it. They launched their annual award nomination campaign today. Do you know a British Columbian who has faced seemingly-insurmountable odds and had the courage and strength to overcome their challenges and reach out to help others? There are categories for addiction, medical, mental health, physical rehabilitation, social adversity, and youth (under 22 years as of Dec. 31, 2009). More info here.
A friend whose daughter recently got married related how she met her betrothed. She was travelling and met him on a train. They were both wearing the same Rosary rings, started talking, and, well, the rest is history. It just goes to show, says my friend, "If you want your daughter to meet a good man, buy her a Rosary ring. And even more important. . . have her pray it!"
The leadership of Canadian Nurses for Life now includes a co-director from B.C.: nurse Renee Schmitz.
CNFL's mission is to support Canadian nurses in protecting and promoting the dignity of every human being from conception to natural death. Its current goals are to increase our network of pro-life nurses in Canada and develop its website.www.canadiannursesforlife.ca
If you are nurse (either currently practising, a student or retired) and wish to become a member, please fill out your membership information by clicking here. If you know of any nursing students or nursing friends who may be interested in joining the network, please pass this item onto them.
You likely know that Dr. Reginald Bibby is one of the foremost observers of religion in Canada. Well James Penner (left) is a highly regarded youth specialist and associate director of Bibby's Project Teen Canada, a unique series of national, bilingual research projects examining the values, attitudes, beliefs, behaviours, and expectations of Canadian teenagers. His observations from this research are complemented by his experience teaching "Sociology of Youth" to hundreds of undergraduate students. Read this interview with him in L'Arche Canada's monthly publication.
Tuesday, November 24, 2009
St. James did it again. The Abbotsford elementary school won a $1000 academic award for the second year in a row. They were once again named first runner-up in the Improvement in Academics category.
St. Jude's of Vancouver also won a $1000 prize for being first runner-up in the Determination in Academic Achievement award.
The prizes are awarded to schools in B.C. for "ongoing academic performance and improvement." First prize is a hefty $3000, while first and second runner-ups each get $1000.
Two Catholic schools were honoured with the title School of Distinction, however the honour carries no prize.
St. Joseph's – Determination in Academic Achievement – School of Distinction
St. Andrew's – Determination in Academic Achievement – School of Distinction
The awards are based on the "Fraser Institute's 2009 annual Report Card on on British Columbia's Elementary Schools and Report Card on Secondary Schools in British Columbia and Yukon."
Vancouver College wins again. They defeated South Kamloops for the second time this season to advance to the AAA semifinals. The Irish controlled most of the game and were leading 23-6 well into the fourth quarter before South Kam got a late TD. The Fighting Irish won 23-12 and will face the W.J. Mouat Hawks this Saturday at 8:00 p.m. at McLeod Stadium in Langley. Mouat finished second in the eastern conference behind Coquitlam's Centennial Centaurs. Centennial faces the New Westminster Hyacks in the other semifinal in Langley. That game kicks-off at 5:30 p.m., before the College-Mouat game.
Thursday, November 19, 2009
But that won't be all for Spags. He's gotten scholarship offers from a few universities in Canada and interest from some schools in the U.S. So, he'll be pounding the ball for heavy yardage somewhere in North America again next fall.
In other action, the St. Thomas More Knights lost to the South Kamloops Titans 10-7. In the dying seconds of the fourth quarter STM had a fourth down and goal on South Kam's two-yard line but failed to snap the ball before the clock reached zero.
However, STM head coach Bernie Kully and his team, shouldn't be hanging their collective heads over the loss. The Knights have improved dramatically over the last few seasons and have a lot of players returning to play next year.
With a first round bye, Vancouver College had the week off and they're gearing up for their game against STM's vanquisher South Kamloops. That game is on Saturday, Nov. 21 at 5:30 p.m. at McLeod Stadium in Langley.
Look for blog on Monday about the Van College match against South Kam.
Wednesday, November 18, 2009
The Knights of Columbus have been active in towns throughout B.C. for literally generations, and Fernie is no different. The local council hosts a soapbox derby each year, and the local newspaper, the Fernie Free Press, has given it some nice coverage.
Mark Pan, the Knights' communications director for B.C. who sent me the story, says he often hears of "amazing stories around B.C. of Knights in action. Unfortunately, these stories so very seldom are told."
Kudos to the Free Press in Fernie for telling this one.
Tuesday, November 17, 2009
A letter from Sigrid Lefebvre, of St. Joseph's Parish in Mission, highlights the urgent need for help in Sudan. Lefebvre is a board member of Canadian Food for Children, a truly altruistic organization in which everyone is a volunteer. No one is paid for their work. One hundred percent of an individual's donation is used to buy food and to pay for shipping costs.
The organization is relaying a request for help from Bishop Akio Johnson Mutek, Bishop of Torit, who says, "death from hunger is so simple; one can die in bed weak and helpless." If you think you can lend a hand, knowing that every penny of your contribution will help feed the hungry, visit www.canadianfoodforchildren.org.
Sunday, November 15, 2009
Friday, November 13, 2009
Click on image below to enlarge.
Thursday, November 12, 2009
The senior running back is now looking at his post secondary options and I'll be running a small story on that next week.
Father Raymond de Souza ended his whirlwind visit to Vancouver with a talk to about 50 priests of the Archdiocese of Vancouver, and beyond. (One priest from the Archdiocese of Seattle attended.)
Monday, November 9, 2009
That was the question put to Father Raymond de Souza today as he addressed Corpus Christi/St. Mark's students at UBC.
The good father, who writes regularly for The National Post, was unhesitant in his response. The Lord, who communicated and evangelized so well with people, would probably not Tweet the Sermon on the Mount.
Jesus spoke directly with people, Father de Souza pointed out, and although it's true that in His day the height of written communications technology was parchment and ink, perhaps there's something significant about the fact He chose that time to come to earth. "The path of the Gospel, of Salvation history, is personal," Father de Souza said. "It's one on one."
While he admits he doesn't use Twitter, that doesn't necessarily mean Jesus wouldn't. Modern media can be a bridge in communications, he said. "It might be an imperfect bridge," but where it can help improve communications, it is a positive development.
Modern communications technology makes it easier to find information and can help people feel less alone. Those are positives. "Virtual communities are not real communities, but they're not nothing."
Father de Souza is in Vancouver speaking to priests of the archdiocese of Vancouver about Catholic social communications as part of The B.C. Catholic's expanded readership initiative that will see the paper going into half of Catholic homes within the next couple of years.
Friday, November 6, 2009
Vancouver College Fighting Irish win 53rd annual Archbishops' Trophy game over the Notre Dame Jugglers
Winning on a mildly wet afternoon, College was down 12-0 until the ten-minute mark of the 4th quarter when they got the first of two TDs. The Irish tacked on both their conversions - Notre Dame missed both of theirs, and that was the difference in the game.
I'll be writing a complete game report and putting up some photos in next week's B.C. Catholic.
That's the timely question posed on the front page of one local newspaper. It asks whether the fear of H1N1 will result in the end of shaking hands, a loss of manners, a decline in civility, and the death of Western Civilization as we know it. (Astute readers might point out that happened when "same-sex marriage" was legalized, but we digress...)
Thursday, November 5, 2009
Vancouver College and Notre Dame have been beating each other up in this game for bragging rights and a shiny trophy since 1957.
The game this year (Friday @ 2:00 p.m.) is shaping up to be a classic.
That's because Notre Dame has quite possibly the best running back in the province in Stephen Spanuolo and College has an extremely stingy defensive unit that has only given-up 65 points in nine games.
That's an average of 7.2 points allowed per game.
These forces will be colliding at O'Hagan field and when the dust settles we'll have all the game reports and photos in next week's B.C. Catholic.
Monday, November 2, 2009
As big weekends for Vancouver College high school football go, last weekend lived up to the hype. The fighting Irish faced-off against the undefeated, no. 1 ranked New Westminster Hyacks at O'Hagan field and came away with a big 35-20 win to move up to 8-1 on the season. They leap-frogged New West (8-1) on the way, moving up to No. 2 from No. 4, while the Hyacks fell to No. 3.
The Irish were led by running back Garret Sanvido's 36 carries for 173 yards and four touchdowns. The senior back returned from injury for the game and gave his team a huge boost.
The Hyacks didn't help themselves out much as they had a serious case of fumble-itis, fumbling the ball 6 times in the first half and turning it over another two times in the second. Next week, College could clinch the Western Conference title with a win in the Archbishops' Trophy game against Notre Dame.
The Notre Dame Jugglers bounced back to their winning ways last weekend after thumping West Vancouver 43-0. The Jugglers beat the winless North Shore squad on the legs of their running back Stephen Spagnuolo. Spags ran the ball 11 times, gaining 232 yards and four TDs.
Notre Dame and Vancouver College play next week. The combination of Spags super running and College's "O'Hagan Wall" defence – one that is only allowing an average of around 6 points a game – should make for yet another classic Archbishops' Trophy battle.
St. Thomas More
The W.J. Mouat Hawks (6-2) walloped the St. Thomas More Knights (1-5) in Burnaby last weekend 46-0.
The score was only 13-0 at the half for the Hawks, but the Knights couldn't hold on after turning the ball over three times in the second half.
Next week St. Thomas More faces Surrey's Holy Cross Crusaders.
Holy Cross Crusaders
The winless Holy Cross Crusaders (0-6) lost again this week, this time falling to the Handsworth Royals (5-3) by a margin of 13-27 on the weekend.
The Crusaders are at home next week to close the season out against St. Thomas More.
Olympic Opportunities with More Than Gold are available for anyone looking to get involved with other Christians during the 2010 Olympics. Check out these opportunities at the More Than Gold website: www.morethangold.ca.
Listen to Archbishop Miller as he takes on birth control, married priests, and even confession as a "Get Out of Jail Free" card for Catholics, as he and CKNW's Jill Bennett have a chat about Catholicism on the station's Faith 101 series. (You'll have to listen to the station's newcast first, but the half-hour interview is worth the wait.)
Can the Catholic faith be expressed as part of a commercial venture? If the answer is no, then the New Orleans Saints in football, the California Angels in baseball, and a particular taqueria in downtown Vancouver may have to rethink their monickers.
A Catholic mother of Latin American heritage wrote to us, upset that a Mexican restaurant on West Hastings is using an image of Our Lady of Guadalupe as its logo. Not only is the image on the storefront, but also on the restaurant's printed materials.
The woman writes: "Can our Catholic leaders in B.C do something about this?
For us, Our Lady is a precious treasure, our faith, our everyday light, not to be considered a logo to sell food. We venerate the Virgin, we don't commercialize her."
While I didn't find the image offensive, I did wonder where you draw the line between personal devotion and sacrilege. I asked Msgr. Pedro Lopez-Gallo. Not only is he a canon lawyer, but his Mexican background gives him an understanding of Latin American sentiments when it comes to this topic.
Msgr. Lopez Gallo: "It is extremely difficult to qualify the popular devotion that sometimes falls into very superstitious worship. Yes, many Mexicans (and Latinos), especially uneducated Catholics, long to put images of Our Lady of Guadalupe everywhere to beg her protection. In their candor they do not have the discretion to limit their devotion and avoid usage under trivial circumstances.
Conscious of these religious feelings, business people commercialize religious icons (e.g., Sacred Heart, symbols of the Eucharist and, of course, images of Mary) for the selling of their products to their target market.
For me, this exploitation of religious images may be blamed more on the commercial agents than on the faithful. The reservation of your correspondent shows how hesitant she is to publicize her criticism.
This is extremely common in Mexico and in many Third World countries. The poorer (and more economically desperate) the people, the more they tend to concretize their devotion in pious objects. I don't think we can do anything to remedy the regrets of your reader.