donderdag 23 september 2010

Telegraph: "Is the age of scientific discovery ending?"

The age of scientific discovery may be nearing its end as the limits of the human mind make further breakthroughs impossible, leading scientists have said.

By Heidi Blake

Published: 12:03PM BST 23 Sep 2010

Experts say the “low hanging fruit” of scientific knowledge, such as the laws of motion and gravity, was attained using simple methods in previous centuries, leaving only increasingly impenetrable problems for modern scientists to solve.

Uncharted areas of science are now so complex that even the greatest minds will struggle to advance human understanding of the world, they claim.

In addition, the remaining problems are becoming so far removed from our natural sensory range that they require increasingly powerful machines, such as the Large Hadron Collider, even to approach them.

Russell Stannard, professor emeritus of physics at the Open University, argues that although existing scientific knowledge will continue to be applied in news ways, "the gaining of knowledge about fundamental laws of nature and the constituents of the world, that must come to an end”.

He said: “We live in a scientific age and that’s a period that’s going to come to an end at some stage. Not when we’ve discovered everything about the world but when we’ve discovered everything that’s open to us to understand.”

In his new book The End of Discovery, which is released on Thursday, Professor Stannard argues that it is impractical to go on building ever larger and more powerful machines to keep seeking new breakthroughs. M-Theory – Stephen Hawking’s preferred explanation of the content of the universe – could not be tested without a particle accelerator the size of a galaxy.

His views are shared by George Johnson, a US science author whose most recent book, The 10 Most Beautiful Experiments, documents the groundbreaking discoveries that were once made using the simplest methods.

“I felt a need to get back to basics, to the time when one person with one mind and one pair of hands could design an apparatus that would pose a question to nature and then receive a crisp, unambiguous answer,” he told the Today Programme on BBC Radio 4.

But he believes that such fundamental discoveries are moving ever further out of reach because it is impossible to probe the remaining mysteries of the universe without assembling a vast team and having access to increasingly complex technology.

zondag 19 september 2010

Toespraak van Paus Benedictus XVI in Oscott College - Birmingham



Chapel of the Francis Martin House, Oscott College - Birmingham
Sunday, 19 September 2010

My dear Brother Bishops,

This has been a day of great joy for the Catholic community in these islands. Blessed John Henry Newman, as we may now call him, has been raised to the altars as an example of heroic faithfulness to the Gospel and an intercessor for the Church in this land that he loved and served so well. Here in this very chapel in 1852, he gave voice to the new confidence and vitality of the Catholic community in England and Wales after the restoration of the hierarchy, and his words could be applied equally to Scotland a quarter of a century later. His beatification today is a reminder of the Holy Spirit’s continuing action in calling forth gifts of holiness from among the people of Great Britain, so that from east to west and from north to south, a perfect offering of praise and thanksgiving may be made to the glory of God’s name.

I thank Cardinal O’Brien and Archbishop Nichols for their words, and in so doing, I am reminded how recently I was able to welcome all of you to Rome for the Ad Limina visits of your respective Episcopal Conferences. We spoke then about some of the challenges you face as you lead your people in faith, particularly regarding the urgent need to proclaim the Gospel afresh in a highly secularized environment. In the course of my visit it has become clear to me how deep a thirst there is among the British people for the Good News of Jesus Christ. You have been chosen by God to offer them the living water of the Gospel, encouraging them to place their hopes, not in the vain enticements of this world, but in the firm assurances of the next. As you proclaim the coming of the Kingdom, with its promise of hope for the poor and the needy, the sick and the elderly, the unborn and the neglected, be sure to present in its fulness the life-giving message of the Gospel, including those elements which call into question the widespread assumptions of today’s culture. As you know, a Pontifical Council has recently been established for the New Evangelization of countries of long-standing Christian tradition, and I would encourage you to avail yourselves of its services in addressing the task before you. Moreover, many of the new ecclesial movements have a particular charism for evangelization, and I know that you will continue to explore appropriate and effective ways of involving them in the mission of the Church.

Since your visit to Rome, political changes in the United Kingdom have focused attention on the consequences of the financial crisis, which has caused so much hardship to countless individuals and families. The spectre of unemployment is casting its shadow over many people’s lives, and the long-term cost of the ill-advised investment practices of recent times is becoming all too evident. In these circumstances, there will be additional calls on the characteristic generosity of British Catholics, and I know that you will take a lead in calling for solidarity with those in need. The prophetic voice of Christians has an important role in highlighting the needs of the poor and disadvantaged, who can so easily be overlooked in the allocation of limited resources. In their teaching document Choosing the Common Good, the Bishops of England and Wales underlined the importance of the practice of virtue in public life. Today’s circumstances provide a good opportunity to reinforce that message, and indeed to encourage people to aspire to higher moral values in every area of their lives, against a background of growing cynicism regarding even the possibility of virtuous living.

Another matter which has received much attention in recent months, and which seriously undermines the moral credibility of Church leaders, is the shameful abuse of children and young people by priests and religious. I have spoken on many occasions of the deep wounds that such behaviour causes, in the victims first and foremost, but also in the relationships of trust that should exist between priests and people, between priests and their bishops, and between the Church authorities and the public. I know that you have taken serious steps to remedy this situation, to ensure that children are effectively protected from harm and to deal properly and transparently with allegations as they arise. You have publicly acknowledged your deep regret over what has happened, and the often inadequate ways it was addressed in the past. Your growing awareness of the extent of child abuse in society, its devastating effects, and the need to provide proper victim support should serve as an incentive to share the lessons you have learned with the wider community. Indeed, what better way could there be of making reparation for these sins than by reaching out, in a humble spirit of compassion, towards children who continue to suffer abuse elsewhere? Our duty of care towards the young demands nothing less.

As we reflect on the human frailty that these tragic events so starkly reveal, we are reminded that, if we are to be effective Christian leaders, we must live lives of the utmost integrity, humility and holiness. As Blessed John Henry Newman once wrote, “O that God would grant the clergy to feel their weakness as sinful men, and the people to sympathize with them and love them and pray for their increase in all good gifts of grace” (Sermon, 22 March 1829). I pray that among the graces of this visit will be a renewed dedication on the part of Christian leaders to the prophetic vocation they have received, and a new appreciation on the part of the people for the great gift of the ordained ministry. Prayer for vocations will then arise spontaneously, and we may be confident that the Lord will respond by sending labourers to bring in the plentiful harvest that he has prepared throughout the United Kingdom (cf. Mt 9:37-38). In this regard, I am glad that I will shortly have the opportunity to meet the seminarians of England, Scotland and Wales, and to assure them of my prayers as they prepare to play their part in bringing in that harvest.

Finally, I should like to speak to you about two specific matters that affect your episcopal ministry at this time. One is the imminent publication of the new translation of the Roman Missal. I want to take this opportunity to thank all of you for the contribution you have made, with such painstaking care, to the collegial exercise of reviewing and approving the texts. This has provided an immense service to Catholics throughout the English-speaking world. I encourage you now to seize the opportunity that the new translation offers for in-depth catechesis on the Eucharist and renewed devotion in the manner of its celebration. “The more lively the eucharistic faith of the people of God, the deeper is its sharing in ecclesial life in steadfast commitment to the mission entrusted by Christ to his disciples” (Sacramentum Caritatis, 6). The other matter I touched upon in February with the Bishops of England and Wales, when I asked you to be generous in implementing the Apostolic Constitution Anglicanorum Coetibus. This should be seen as a prophetic gesture that can contribute positively to the developing relations between Anglicans and Catholics. It helps us to set our sights on the ultimate goal of all ecumenical activity: the restoration of full ecclesial communion in the context of which the mutual exchange of gifts from our respective spiritual patrimonies serves as an enrichment to us all. Let us continue to pray and work unceasingly in order to hasten the joyful day when that goal can be accomplished.

With these sentiments, I thank you warmly for your hospitality over the past four days. Commending all of you and the people you serve to the intercession of Saint Andrew, Saint David and Saint George, I am pleased to impart my Apostolic Blessing to you and to all the clergy, religious and lay faithful of England, Scotland and Wales.

Vandaag: Onze-Lieve-Vrouw van La Salette

Onze-Lieve-Vrouw van La Salette, middelares voor de zondaars genoemd, betreft een bedevaartsoord in La Salette, een klein Alpendorpje op 1.800 meter hoogte in de gemeente La Salette-Fallavaux, in het Franse Dauphine in het bisdom Grenoble, ca. 75 km ten zuidoosten van Grenoble.

In het jaar 1846 heeft er in La Salette een verschijning van Maria aan twee herderskinderen, Melanie Calvat en Maximin Giraud, plaatsgevonden, welke door de Katholieke Kerk wordt erkend.

De congregatie van de Salettijnen dankt haar naam aan Onze-Lieve-Vrouw van La Salette.

Zaligverklaring van Kardinaal John Henry Newman

John Henry Newman (Londen, 21 februari 1801 - Birmingham, 11 augustus 1890) was een Engelse theoloog en bekeerling tot het Katholieke geloof. In 1879 werd hij door Paus Leo XIII kardinaal gecreëerd. Hij koos als wapenspreuk: Cor ad cor loquitur (Het hart spreekt tot het hart). Hij werd niet tot bisschop gewijd.

Newman studeerde aan Oriel College en Trinity College te Oxford en werd er professor. In zijn jonge jaren was hij een belangrijke figuur binnen de Oxford beweging die ernaar streefde om de Anglicaanse Kerk dichter bij haar Katholieke wortels te brengen. In 1845 trad hij toe tot de Rooms-Katholieke Kerk.

Hij werd tot priester gewijd en trad toe tot de gemeenschap van de Oratorianen. Zowel vóór als na zijn bekering schreef hij een aantal invloedrijke boeken, waaronder Via Media, Poging tot het ontwikkelen van een christelijke leer, An Idea of a University en de Grammar of Assent.

Zondag, 19 september 2010 werd Kardinaal Newman door Paus Benedictus XVI in Cofton Park, Birmingham, zalig verklaard.

250.000 gelovigen in Birmingham!!!

zaterdag 18 september 2010

350.000 gelovigen in Hyde Park!!!

The Pope in Parliament and Westminster Abbey: a day that shook the foundations of Britain's 'Protestant Myth'!

How odd that it should be the Guardian that grasped the magnitude of what happened yesterday. Andrew Brown, religion editor of Comment is Free, and the possessor of an intellect as mighty and muddled as that of Rowan Williams, writes:

This was the end of the British Empire.

In all the four centuries from Elizabeth I to Elizabeth II, England has been defined as a Protestant nation. The Catholics were the Other; sometimes "violent terrorists and rebels", sometimes merely "dirty immigrants". The sense that this was a nation specially blessed by God arose from a deeply anti-Catholic reading of the Bible. Yet it was central to English self-understanding when Queen Elizabeth II was crowned in 1952 [sic], and swore to uphold the Protestant religion by law established.

For all of those 400 or so years it would have been unthinkable that a pope should stand in Westminster Hall and praise Sir Thomas More, who died to defend the pope’s sovereignty against the king’s. Rebellion against the pope was the foundational act of English power. And now the power is gone, and perhaps the rebellion has gone, too.

This was indeed a day of unthinkable events. Many Protestants will have been disturbed to see Pope Benedict XVI in Westminster Hall praising St Thomas More (who incidentally died to defend what he saw as the sovereignty of God). I don’t agree, however, that rebellion against the Pope was the “foundational act of English power”. Brown is a Left-wing agnostic whom one would expect to be suspicious of a national myth; but here we go again – we’re told that England discovered its identity as a result of the Reformation. Actually, English industry and culture flourished under the spiritual patronage of Rome; if the country had remained Catholic, they would have continued to do so. (In Germany, cities that remained Catholic were as prosperous as those that become Protestant.)

Indeed, if you want evidence of the self-confidence of our Catholic national identity, look no further than Westminster Abbey and Westminster Hall. For at least the first 500 years of its existence – we can’t be sure when it was founded – the Abbey was obedient to Benedict’s predecessors. So for the Pope to enter it today was an affirmation of its own “foundational act”. Not for nothing did he point out in his address that the church was dedicated to St Peter. Even Catholics who would never be so crude as to say “the Abbey belongs to us, not to you” sensed that history was being re-balanced in some way. They realised that the Pope had as much right to sit in that sanctuary as the Archbishop of Canterbury (who, to be fair, showed the Holy Father a degree of respect that implied that he, at least, recognises the spiritual primacy of the See of Peter even if he rejects some of its teachings).

Of course I’m not denying that for centuries anti-Catholicism was central to English self-understanding, even if it took nearly a century of harrassment and persecution to suppress the old religion. And there are still pockets of intense hatred of Rome in English society today. The difference is that the only anti-Catholics with influence are secularists who aren’t interested enough in the papal claims even to find out what they are. (I’m thinking of Peter Tatchell’s amazingly ignorant Channel 4 documentary.) They hate religion and they pick on Catholics because they’re the softest target. Protestant anti-Catholics, in contrast, don’t have mates in the media or useful allies in the Church of England. All they can do is watch in horror as the Pope of Rome processes into the church where Protestant monarchs are crowned, declares unambigously that he is the successor of St Peter with responsibility for the unity of Christendom, and then walks out again – to hearty applause.

To be honest, I’m still not quite sure what to make of it all myself. Benedict XVI’s speeches are worth reading several times; they often turn out to be more radical than they first appear. But one thing is for sure. Despite the unassuming courtesy of the Pope’s manner, he didn’t give an inch.

By Damian Thompson, who is Editor of Telegraph Blogs and a journalist specialising in religion.

vrijdag 17 september 2010

Paus Benedictus XVI: "Godsdienst wordt gemarginaliseerd"

Tijdens een toespraak in Westminster Hall, in Londen, heeft de Paus gezegd dat sommige mensen "de stem van de godsdienst het zwijgen willen opleggen". Hij reageerde daarmee op de vele kritiek op de kerk.

"Ik kan niet anders dan mijn bezorgdheid uit te drukken over de groeiende marginalisering van godsdienst, in het bijzonder van het Christendom, die plaatsvindt op verschillende plaatsen, en zelfs in landen die een grote nadruk leggen op verdraagzaamheid", zei Benedictus XVI.

Bron: Belga/VRT


Palace of Holyroodhouse - Edinburgh
Thursday, 16 September 2010

"Even in our own lifetime, we can recall how Britain and her leaders stood against a Nazi tyranny that wished to eradicate God from society and denied our common humanity to many, especially the Jews, who were thought unfit to live. I also recall the regime’s attitude to Christian pastors and religious who spoke the truth in love, opposed the Nazis and paid for that opposition with their lives. As we reflect on the sobering lessons of the atheist extremism of the twentieth century, let us never forget how the exclusion of God, religion and virtue from public life leads ultimately to a truncated vision of man and of society and thus to a “reductive vision of the person and his destiny” (Caritas in Veritate, 29)."



donderdag 16 september 2010

De Paus in het vliegtuig onderweg naar Schotland:"Pedofilie is ziekte. De vrije wil wordt uitgeschakeld"

Bron: AP/VRT

Paus Benedictus XVI is voor een vierdaags bezoek naar Groot-Brittannië afgereisd. Tijdens zijn vliegtuigreis van Rome naar de Schotse hoofdstad Edinburgh werd hij meteen met vragen bestookt over de recente pedofilieschandalen in de kerk. "Pedofilie is een ziekte waarbij de vrije wil wordt uitgeschakeld", vertelde hij aan de journalisten.

De Paus zei:"De kerk is als geheel niet voldoende waakzaam, daadkrachtig en besluitvaardig geweest toen ze werd geconfronteerd met gevallen van kindermisbruik door priesters". "De verhalen hebben mij persoonlijk gechoqueerd."

Opmerkelijk in de interviews is dat de paus pedofilie ziet als een ziekte. "Daarbij wordt de vrije wil uitgeschakeld. De juiste straf voor daders is ervoor zorgen dat zij niet meer in aanraking komen met jongeren", zegt hij.

Kerkjurist Rik Torfs vindt de uitspraken van Benedictus XVI "zeer gevaarlijk" [Torfs is "zeer gevaarlijk" voor ons intellect! Wat een idioot!].

De Paus drong bij zijn aankomst in Edinburgh ook in zijn openingstoespraak aan op "respect voor religieuze tradities" en waarschuwde tegen "agressieve vormen van secularisatie". [Het bezoek aan Edinburgh was trouwens een ware triomftocht! Met de Queen die voor de Paus buigt!]

Het pausbezoek is eerder een staatsbezoek dan een kerkelijk bezoek, want de leider van het Vaticaan werd niet uitgenodigd door de Britse kerk maar door de koningin. [Dit is het eerste staatsbezoek van een Paus aan the UK. Dit wijst erop dat de Katholieke Kerk in the UK er belangrijk geworden is!!!] Het is van 1982 geleden dat het hoofd van de Katholieke Kerk bij de Britten op bezoek ging. Toen was het Paus Johannes Paulus II die door Queen Elisabeth II ontvangen werd.

VRT: "Groot-Brittannië is [overwegend] protestants [Anglicaans dus!], maar onder meer in Liverpool en Glasgow wonen heel wat Katholieken [Ook elders in the UK! Het Katholicisme is trouwens de grootste godsdienst van het Verenigd Koninkrijk!]. Vanavond droeg de Paus een mis op in Glasgow voor hij naar Londen doorreist. Voor de openluchtmis in Bellahouston Park waren 65.000 tickets verkocht [Voor Pauselijke evenementen worden géén tickets verkocht, maar kaarten verdeeld!!!], maar er waren 100.000 toeschouwers verwacht." [Uiteindelijk waren 180.000 gelovigen aanwezig!]


Papal Flight
Thursday, 16 September 2010

Father Lombardi: Your Holiness, we welcome you among us and we thank you for your availability. We are a group of 70 journalists from different parts of the world. Naturally some come from the United Kingdom, wanting to join us from the beginning on this flight. As usual my colleagues during the last few days have presented some questions which we will put to you for this first conversation at the beginning of an important and challenging journey, that we hope will be very beautiful. I have chosen some questions from among those presented. I will ask you in Italian so as not to tire you. Some colleagues will assist those who do not understand Italian sufficiently.

The first question: during the preparation of this visit there have been discussions and contrasting opinions. In the country’s past traditions there have been strong anti-Catholic positions. Are you worried about how you are going to be received?

The Holy Father: “Above all I wish you a good-day and a pleasant flight to all of us. I must admit that I am not worried, because when I went to France, it was said that it was the most anticlerical country, with strong anticlerical opinions and very few believers; when I went to the Czech Republic it was said that it was the most irreligious country in Europe and the most anticlerical also. Yes, all Western countries have, each one in its own way, strong anticlerical and anti-Catholic opinions, but they also have a strong presence of the faith. I have seen and received in France and in the Czech Republic a warm reception from the Catholic community, great attention from agnostics who are still seeking, who wish to know and find the values that assist the progress of humanity and they were attentive, hoping maybe to hear from me something in this vein. As regards tolerance and respect from anti-Catholics, naturally Great Britain has had is own history of anti-Catholicism. This is obvious; but it is also a country with a great history of tolerance. And so I am sure that there will be a positive welcome from Catholics and believers in general, attention from those who are seeking how to move forward in our time, and respect and tolerance where there is anti-Catholicism. I am going in good spirits and with joy.”

Father Lombardi: The United Kingdom, like many other Western countries – this is a theme that was already touched upon in the first response – is considered a secular nation, with a strong atheistic movement associated with cultural influences; however there are also signs that religious faith, in particular in Jesus Christ, is still vibrant at the personal level. What might this mean for Catholics and Anglicans? Can one do something to make the Church as an institution more credible and attractive to all?

The Holy Father: “One might say that a church which seeks above all to be attractive would already be on the wrong path, because the Church does not work for itself, does not work to increase its numbers so as to have more power. The Church is at the service of Another; it does not serve itself, seeking to be a strong body, but it strives to make the Gospel of Jesus Christ accessible, the great truths, the great powers of love and of reconciliation that appeared in this figure and that come always from the presence of Jesus Christ. In this sense, the Church does not seek to be attractive, but rather to make herself transparent for Jesus Christ. And in the measure in which the Church is not for herself, as a strong and powerful body in the world, that wishes to have power, but simply is herself the voice of Another, she becomes truly transparent to the great figure of Jesus Christ and the great truths that he has brought to humanity, the power of love; it is than when the Church is heard and accepted. She should not consider herself, but assist in considering the Other, and should herself see and speak of the Other and for the Other. In this sense it seems to me also that Anglicans and Catholics have the simple task, the same task, the same direction to take. If Anglicans and Catholics see that both are not there for themselves, but are rather instruments of Christ, ‘friends of the Bridegroom,’ as Saint John says; if both follow together the priority of Christ and not themselves, they draw closer together, because the priority of Christ brings them together, they are no longer in competition, each one seeking greater numbers, but are united in commitment to the truth of Christ who comes into this world, and so they find themselves also placed reciprocally in a true and fruitful ecumenism.”

Father Lombardi: Thank you Your Holiness. A third question. It is known and recent polls have shown that the sexual abuse scandals have shaken the trust of the faithful in the Church. How do you intend to act so as to re-establish this trust?

The Holy Father: Above all I must say that these revelations were a shock for me. They are a great sadness, and it is hard to understand how this perversion of the priestly ministry was possible. The priest, at the moment of ordination, a moment for which he prepared for years, says “yes” to Christ, in order to be his mouth, his hand and to serve with all his being so that the Good Shepherd who loves us, who helps and guides us to truth, may be present in the world. How a man who has said and done this can afterwards fall into such perversions is difficult to understand. It is a great sadness, a great sadness also that Church leadership was not sufficiently vigilant and sufficiently swift and decisive in taking the necessary measures. On account of this we are living a time of penance, humility, renewed sincerity, as I wrote to the Irish Bishops. I feel that we must now be engaged in a time of penance, a time of humility; we must renew and learn again absolute sincerity. In relation to the victims I would like to say that there are three important things. Our first interest must be the victims; how to repair the damage, how to assist these persons in overcoming their trauma, in finding life again, in finding again trust in the message of Christ. Care, commitment in favour of the victims is the first priority, together with material, psychological and spiritual assistance. Secondly there is the problem of those who are guilty. A just penalty must exclude them from all access to young people. We know that this is an illness, that free will does not rule where this illness is present, and that we must protect these persons from themselves and find a way to assist them and to protect them from themselves and exclude them from access to young people. Thirdly there is the question of prevention through education and the selection of candidates to the priesthood. We must be in such a way attentive so as to exclude, according to human possibilities, future cases. Here I would like to thank the British Bishops for their attention, their cooperation both with the See of Peter and with the civil authorities, and for their attention to victims and respect for the law. I have the impression that the British Bishops have been doing and are doing a good job and I am grateful to them.”

Father Lombardi: Your Holiness, Cardinal Newman is obviously very important for you. For Cardinal Newman you are making an exception by presiding at his beatification. Are you of the opinion that recalling him can help to overcome divisions between Anglicans and Catholics? Also, what aspects of his personality do you intend to stress more?

The Holy Father: “On the one hand Cardinal Newman was above all a modern man, who lived the whole problem of modernity; he faced the problem of agnosticism, the impossibility of knowing God, of believing. He was a man whose whole life was a journey, a journey in which he allowed himself to be transformed by truth in a search marked by great sincerity and great openness, so as to know better and to find and accept the path that leads to true life. This interior modernity, in his being and in his life, demonstrates the modernity of his faith. It is not a faith of formulas of past ages; it is a very personal faith, a faith lived, suffered and found in a long path of renewal and conversion. He was a man of great culture, who on the other hand shared in our sceptical culture of today, in the question whether we can know something for certain regarding the truth of man and his being, and how we can come to convergent probabilities. He was a man with a great culture and knowledge of the Fathers of the Church. He studied and renewed the interior genesis of faith and recognized its inner form and construction. He was a man of great spirituality, of humanity, of prayer, with a profound relationship with God, a personal relationship, and hence a deep relationship with the people of his time and ours. So I would point to these three elements: modernity in his life with the same doubts and problems of our lives today; his great culture, his knowledge of the treasures of human culture, openness to permanent search, to permanent renewal and, spirituality, spiritual life, life with God; these elements give to this man an exceptional stature for our time. That is why he is like a Doctor of the Church for us and for all, and also a bridge between Anglicans and Catholics.”

Father Lombardi: One last question. This visit is considered a State visit, as such it has been qualified. What does this mean for the relations between the Holy See and the United Kingdom? Are there important areas of convergence, especially regarding the great challenges of today’s world?

The Holy Father: “I am very grateful to Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II who decided to give this visit the official status of a State visit, which expresses the public character of the visit and also the common responsibility of politics and religion for the future of the continent and the future of humanity. Our high and common responsibility is to see that the values that create justice and politics, and those that come from religion, walk together in our time. Naturally the fact that, from a juridical point of view, this is a State visit, does not make my visit a political reality, because if the Pope is a head of State, this is just an instrument that guarantees the independence of his message and the public character of his work as Pastor. In this sense the State visit is substantially and essentially a pastoral visit, a visit made in responsibility for the faith, for which the Pope exists. Naturally a State visit centres the attention on the connection between political interests and religion. Substantially politics came into being in order to guarantee justice, and with justice, freedom. Now justice is a moral value, a religious value, and hence faith, the proclamation of the Gospel, is linked to politics at the point of “justice”, and from here are born common interests. Great Britain has a long experience and is greatly active in the struggle against the evils of our times, against suffering, poverty, disease, drugs; and these same struggles against suffering, poverty, human slavery, human abuse, drugs, are also objectives of faith because they are objectives of the humanization of man, seeking to restore to him the image of God, against destruction and devastation. A second common task is the commitment to peace in the world and the capacity to live in peace, education for peace, creating the virtues that make persons capable of living in peace. And finally an essential element for peace is interreligious dialogue, tolerance, openness to one another, and this is a profound aim, both in Great Britain as a society, and in the Catholic faith, to open hearts, to open people to dialogue, to be open in this way to truth and to the common path of humanity and to find again the values that are at the foundation of our humanism.”

Father Lombardi: Thank you Your Holiness for your words. You have extended before us a panorama of the meaning of so many messages that you intend to convey during these days and we hope that you may be effective in doing so in all your talks. Since we are communicators, we assure you of our cooperation in the proper understanding and transmission of your messages. We are grateful to you for giving to us from the beginning your time and energy and we offer you our best wishes for the present journey. Thank you Your Holiness.

woensdag 15 september 2010

Seksueel misbruik binnen de sportwereld


Minister Muyters zegt: "melden aan de federaties, niet aan het gerecht"!

Minister De Clerck zegt dus net het tegenovergestelde!!! De Kerk moet het aan het gerecht melden!

De ministers Muyters en De Clerck spreken elkaar dus tegen!!!

Het lijkt erop dat de politiek een beetje het noorden kwijt is!

dinsdag 14 september 2010

Requiem voor Professor Dr. Karel van Isacker S.J.

Het Plechtige Requiem vond plaats op dinsdag, 14 september 2010 om 19.00 uur in de Sint-Michaëlskapel te Niel-bij-As.

In paradisum deducant te angeli

Professor Dr. Karel van Isacker S.J.

* 26 juni 1913
+ 25 augustus 2010

In de kapel vond de plechtige Requiemmis plaats met assistentie van diaken en subdiaken en werd opgedragen volgens de buitengewone vorm van de Romeinse ritus (Tridentijns).

De Gregoriaanse gezangen werden verzorgd door de Schola Cantorum uit Achel.

Twee citaten uit het boekje 'Ontwijding' door pater Karel Van Isacker (Davidsfonds, 1989):

"Voor het weervinden van het geloof en de wijding zal er meer nodig zijn dan een terugkeer tot de authentieke teksten van Vaticanum II. Even onontbeerlijk is het goedmaken van de fouten: het overhoophalen van de traditie en het naïeve openstaan voor de 'wereld'."

"Wat na Vaticanum II in de Kerk gebeurde is heel wat anders dan het opruimen van verstarde gebruiken. Het is, op vele punten, een ruptuur met de heilige en daarom onaanraakbare oorsprong, met de Christus Die voortleeft in de Kerk. Het snelle verval van de godsdienstigheid is een symptoom. (...) De hoofdtrend van het proces van secularisering is duidelijk: emancipatie door desacralisatie. De mens moest autonoom worden en dus bevrijd van de religieuze tradities, van de wijding, van het sacrale dat hem opende voor 'het totaal ondere, het transcedente, het absolute, het goddelijke'. Zo werd ieder afbreken van een stuk eerbiedwaardig verleden een stap naar emanciperende ontwijding."

zondag 12 september 2010

Ode aan de Vreugde - Friedrich von Schiller

Vreugde, schone vonk door God geschonken,
Dochter uit Elysium,
Wij betreden vuurbedronken,
Hemelse, Uw heiligdom.
Uw betovering maakt weer één
Wat traditie streng had verdeeld;
Alle mensen worden broeders
Waar Uw zachte vleugel streelt.

Wees omvat, miljoenen zonen,
Deze kus aan de ganse Wereld!
Broeders, boven de sterrenhemel
Moet een lieve Vader wonen.

Wie het groot succes al inde,
Van een vriend de vriend te zijn,
Wie een lieve vrouw kon vinden
Dele met ons dit festijn!
Zelfs wie maar op heel de wereld
Aan één ziel zijn lot verbond!
Wenend weggaan moet degene
Die de boodschap nooit verstond!

Wie op aarde woont
Koester deze sympathie.
Die naar de sterren leidt,
Waar de Onbekende heerst.

Alle wezens drinken vreugde
Aan de borsten der natuur,
Alle goeden, alle slechten,
Volgen haar rozenspoor.
Kussen gaf zij ons en druiven,
En een vriend, beproefd in de dood.
Wellust werd aan de worm prijsgegeven,
En de Cherubijn staat voor God.

Jullie werpen je ter aarde, mensenzonen?
Kunnen jullie de Schepper voelen?
Zoek hem boven de sterrenhemel!
Boven de sterren moet Hij wonen!

Vreugde heet de veer
In de eeuwige natuur.
Vreugde, vreugde drijft de raderen
In de grote wereldhorloge
Bloemen lokt zij uit de knoppen,
Zonnen uit het firmament,
Sferen rolt zij in de ruimten
Die de telescoop niet kent.

Blij zoals Zijn zonnen vliegen
Door des hemels prachtig plan,
Loop ook, broeders, jullie baan,
Vreugdevol zoals een held ter zege.

Uit de vurige waarheidsspiegel
Lacht zij met de wetenschapper.
Naar de steile deugdenheuvel
Voert zij zacht wie lijden moet.

Op de zonneberg van het geloof,
Ziet men haar banieren wapperen,
Door de kier van gebarsten zerken
Haar in 't engelenkoor staan.

Doorsta toch moedig, mensenzonen!
Doorsta voor de betere wereld!
Boven, over het sterrenveld
Zal een grote God u lonen.

Goden kan men niets vergelden;
Mooi is aan hen gelijk te zijn.
Leed en armoe, kom jullie melden,
Met de blijden nu blij zijn.
Woede en wraak zij nu vergeten,
Onze aartsvijand vergeven.
Geen verdriet mag aan hem vreten,
En van rouw zij hij bevrijd.

Laat ons 't schuldenboek verscheuren!
Verzoend de hele wereld!
Broeders, boven de sterrenhemel
Berecht God ons, zoals wij berechten.

Vreugde sprankelt in bokalen;
Uit het gouden druivenbloed
Drinken kannibalen mildheid,
De vertwijfeling heldenmoed.
Broeders, vlieg op van uw plaatsen,
Geef de volle roemer door op 't feest,
Laat maar bruisen 't schuim ten hemel,
Dit glas aan de Goede Geest!

Hem die sterrenstelsels loven,
Hem die de Serafijn zingend prijst,
Dit glas aan de Goede Geest,
Boven het sterrendak daarboven!

Vaste moed in het lijden,
Hulp waar de Onschuld weent,
Eeuwigdurende gezworen eden,
Waarachtigheid tegenover vriend en vijand,
Mannentrots voor koningstronen
Broeders, al kost het goed en bloed
Wil verdienste kronen
En de ondergang aan het leugengebroed!

Sluit de heilige cirkel hechter,
Zweer bij deze gouden wijn
Uw gelofte trouw te zijn,
Zweer het bij de Sterrenrechter!
Redding van de ketenen des tirannen
Grootmoedigheid voor de bozewicht
Hoop op het sterfbed
Genade bij het Laatste Oordeel
Ook de doden zullen leven
Broeders drink en zing met ons mee
Alle zondaars worden hopelijk vergeven...
En de hel zal er dan niet meer zijn...

Een opgewekt afscheidsuur
Zoete slaap in de lijkwade
Broeders, een milde uitspraak
Uit de mond van de Dodenrechter

S.E. Mons. Mario OLIVERI - Vescovo emerito di Albenga-Imperia

S.E. Mons. Mario OLIVERI - Vescovo emerito di Albenga-Imperia

We Stand In Support of Padre Stefano Manelli

We Stand In Support of Padre Stefano Manelli

Paus Benedictus XVI

Paus Benedictus XVI

Een meditatie over het Heilig Misoffer