Wed

20

Nov

2013

Own It

by Natalie Yuhas

 

What I find most beautiful in people are the little, everyday mannerisms they don’t even know they are doing. I love the way a person interacts with the people and things in his or her environment. Anyone can look into a mirror, pose, and smile, but that is not a good way to gauge how you actually look. How often are you posing completely still, smiling in your everyday life? You aren’t. There is no way a mirror can show you just how beautiful you look when you laugh at something someone you really care about said. It can’t show you the way you look when you’re reading your favorite book in your comfiest clothes, or the way you light up and come alive when you’re doing

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Wed

20

Nov

2013

God Is Sneaky: Grace in the Absurd and the Simple

by Chris Canniff

 

 

It was an evening in early September, and it was my first time writing a newspaper article. I was a freshman who had only been at BC for about two weeks. The event I was covering was on a Friday night – of course they gave the Friday night assignment to a freshman. Sister Helen Prejean, CSJ, the author of the acclaimed book Dead Man Walking which was later made into an Academy Award-winning film of the same title, starring Susan Sarandon and Sean Penn, was coming to speak about her crusade to end the death penalty.

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Wed

20

Nov

2013

Guidepost: Better Together

by Nikki Elliott

 

For as in one body we have many parts, and all the parts do not have the same function, so we, though many, are one body in Christ and individually parts of one another.

Romans 12:4-5

 

I discovered a love for hot yoga this past summer. Most mornings I woke up at 4:30 am to drive—or race, rather—to my favorite classes at a yoga studio downtown before going to the office. This new schedule was an adjustment, but after a few weeks I did not mind the early mornings, and I looked forward to starting each day on my mat with downward dogs and vinyasas. It was a time that allowed for much needed meditation, self-reflection, goal setting, and prayer; it was my “me” time and often times my “me and God” time.

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Wed

20

Nov

2013

Protestant Perspective: What Hath Wittenberg to Do With Rome?

by Mark Hertenstein

 

That title may indeed be strange and its answer, no doubt, will strike some as self-evident. It is strange insofar as a small town in Saxony has absolutely nothing to do with the capital of Italy, the former center of the Roman Empire. It is apparently self-evident to those who spot the theological point here – the historical center of the Reformation is tied to Rome only insofar as it vehemently opposed Rome, being the home of Martin Luther. Luther and Lutheranism have very little to do with Rome on the surface, other than some ecumenical exchanges.

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Wed

20

Nov

2013

Viaggio a Roma: The Gift of Being Alone

by Katie Rich

 

Two and a half years ago, I stood in the Minneapolis airport security line, chomping on my lip as if the ensuing teeth marks would keep my welling tears from spilling down my cheeks. I was downright terrified to fly by myself to Boston for freshmen orientation, despite the fact that I had a friendly face on the other end waiting to greet me. How is it, then, that this past weekend I sauntered onto an airplane and flew to Budapest, completely alone? Your guess is as good as mine.

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Wed

20

Nov

2013

BC Undergrads as “Moralistic Therapeutic Deists”?

by Mark Massa, SJ

 

Mark Massa, S.J., is Dean of Boston College's School of Theology and Ministry, as well as professor of church history. The research area of his last three books has been the American Catholic experience since World War II. He taught at Fordham University for 20 years (where he started the Curran Center for American Catholic Studies) before coming to BC in 2010.

 

In 2005, Christian Smith, a sociologist of religion at the University of Notre Dame, published a timely – and for those of us teaching theology to undergraduates in Jesuit institutions – extremely provocative study of the religious beliefs of young adults in the United States. Smith’s book, entitled Soul Searching: The Religious and Spiritual Lives of American Teenagers, was based on hundreds of one-on-one interviews conducted by the University of North Carolina between 2001 and 2005 in its “National Study of Youth and Religion.”

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Tue

19

Nov

2013

Campus Ministry Liturgies Heal and Inspire

by Ashley Brown

 

Escaping the summer heat and entering through the oversized wooden doors of St. Ignatius Church, incoming freshmen and their loved ones experience the afternoon sunlight passing through stained glass windows, scattering a myriad of colors upon their faces as they gather for Mass. This scene is repeated seven times over the course of the summer and marks the beginning of each orientation session and thus the beginning of a student’s Boston College experience. By opening each student orientation with a liturgy, the importance of BC’s identity as a Jesuit, Catholic university is established for the new members of this community.

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Tue

19

Nov

2013

Suspicious Fires Damage Theology Department, Gasson Hall

by Chris Canniff and Natalie Yuhas

 

On Saturday, November 9, at approximately 9:45pm, Boston College police received reports of small fires in Gasson and Stokes halls. Two of the fires had been set in the north wing of Stokes Hall, and another fire was set in Gasson 100 (the Irish Room) in Gasson Hall. The fourth floor of Stokes North, where the most serious damage was reported, is home to the theology department.

 

The school’s emergency alert system notified students of the fires at 2:10am on Sunday morning via text message and email alerts. Students were told to be wary of suspicious activity and to leave their building immediately if a fire alarm were to sound.

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Tue

19

Nov

2013

BC Students Raise Money for Typhoon Haiyan Victims

by Chris Canniff

 

Several student leaders at Boston College have begun an initiative to raise $10,000 to aid the victims of Typhoon Haiyan, which devastated the Philippines November 7-8, leaving approximately 4,000 individuals dead and injuring roughly 18,000 others. UGBC Executive Vice President Matt Alonsozana, A&S ’14, immediately discussed the idea of fundraising with Gerome Paradela, president of the Philippine Society of Boston College and A&S ’14.

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Tue

19

Nov

2013

BC Professor and Former President of Ireland: Collegiality and Church Leadership

by Margaret Antonio

 

 

On November 7, 2013, Mary McAleese, former president of Ireland and a canon lawyer, engaged in a discussion with Boston College Theology professor, Dr. Richard Gaillardetz, sponsored by the School of Theology and Ministry’s C21 series. McAleese expressed her views on how the Catholic Church is striving to adapt to the changing times while retaining its identity.

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Tue

19

Nov

2013

Appalachia Volunteers Is Still Enrolling for Spring Break

by Hannah Luke

 

Got spring break plans? I didn’t my freshman year. On a whim, I decided to sign up for Appalachia Volunteers. No application, and only one hour-long meeting a week? Great! I wasn’t quite sure what I was signing up for, but I did know that after my first spring break spent with a small group of BC students serving a community in Barren Springs, Virginia, I was hooked. Making that impulse decision to give my spring break to Appalachia Volunteers shifted the trajectory of my path here at BC, changing it for the better.

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Tue

19

Nov

2013

A Eulogy for My Mentor

by Mark Hertenstein

 

THEOLOGY DEPARTMENT’S DONALD DIETRICH PASSES AWAY AT 72

 

Donald J. Dietrich, Professor Emeritus of Theology and former department chairman, passed away on Saturday, November 16 at his home in Belmont, MA at the age of 72. A specialist in the German Catholic response to the Holocaust, Dietrich was the author of numerous books and articles. His funeral Mass will be celebrated today at 10:30am at St. Joseph’s Church in Belmont. Requiescat in pace.

 

It is not often that I become emotional. Most who know me, know that. But this past Saturday was one of those times.

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Mon

18

Nov

2013

Decreases in Religious Life Prompt Possible Canon Law Reform

by Sofia Infante

 

At a conference regarding “vocational perseverance” hosted at the Pontifical University Antonianum in Rome on October 29, heads of religious life said that Pope Francis, who in his short time as head of the Catholic Church, has come to be regarded as a reformer, is open to the possibility of reforming the Code of Canon Law. A recent decrease in religious life has seen a large departure of priests and nuns from religious life, leading many within the Church to wonder if a reform of the Code of Canon Law may help ameliorate the current situation. Archbishop José Rodriguez Carballo, who was recently named secretary of the Congregation for Institutes of Consecrated Life and Societies of Apostolic Life, said that in the last five years more than 13,000 people left the religious life.

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Sun

17

Nov

2013

The Jesus Prayer: A Way to Ecumenism

Click to view full document
Click to view full document

by Gjergji Evangjeli

 

Ever since the Second Vatican Council, the prospect of reunification between the Catholic and Eastern Orthodox Churches has seemed closer than ever. The Joint International Commission for Theological Dialogue Between the Orthodox Church and The Roman Catholic Church has been fast at work since 1980 trying to solve issues which divide the two churches. Though the work of these and other bodies discussing is very important, I would not be saying anything new if I were to say that prayer is an integral part of reunification. Regardless of how many conferences and documents may be issued, the Body of Christ cannot be healed of this scar with intellectual statements, but in an organic manner, through the unceasing prayer of both the Catholic and Orthodox faithful.

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Sun

17

Nov

2013

Devil’s Advocate: The Great Equalizers

by Anthony Cossette

 

Death is a word everyone shudders at the thought of, yet isn’t too comfortable speaking about until tragedy strikes. Yet we are reminded of its presence everywhere, especially in the news media: just this past week the typhoon in the Philippines took thousands of lives and wrought a tremendous amount of suffering on the survivors. Despite the laudable efforts of countless organizations providing material and psychological relief for the Filipino populace, is it only when responding to a natural disaster or being moved by personal or societal tragedy that we transform into generous saints within a world of pernicious and persistent income disparity, an ever-widening gap between rich and poor?

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Sun

17

Nov

2013

Pro-Life: The Least Among Us

by Kate Conroy

 

Although Pope Francis is well known for his quote that Catholics are too obsessed over issues like abortion, he does not say that we should discard the issue and concede to the popular view. Rather, he has said that “Even the weakest and most vulnerable, the sick, the old, the unborn and the poor, are masterpieces of God’s creation, made in his own image, destined to live forever, and deserving of the utmost reverence and respect.”

 

The pro-life movement is centered on protecting the poorest and most vulnerable members of our society: the unborn, the sick and elderly, and those imprisoned.

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Sun

17

Nov

2013

Liturgy: The Feasts of Hallowmas

by Jay Chin

 

The Western Church ends October and begins November with the Hallowmas Triduum, three days in which we remember those who are no longer with us and those either already enjoying the Mystery of God, or well on their way to it.

 

The Triduum begins on October 31st, the Eve of All Hallows, famously contracted to Halloween. Contrary to popular belief, the fact that the Triduum begins on this day has nothing to do with any pagan celebrations that coincided with it. It is simply the day before All Hallows Day, November 1st. The early Church used to commemorate the Virgin Mary and all martyrs on May 13th, which was the day Pope Boniface IV consecrated the Church of St. Mary and the Martyrs, formerly known as the Pantheon, around the year 610. About 120 years later, Pope Gregory III consecrated a chapel in St. Peter’s Basilica to all the saints on November 1st and so he moved the feast to that time. Then, about 100 years later, Pope Gregory IV extended the feast to the entire Western Church. The Eastern Church usually celebrates this feast on the first Sunday after Pentecost, hence the name Sunday of All Saints.

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Sun

17

Nov

2013

Just Rewards

by Prof. John J. Michalczyk

 

Professor John Michalczyk teaches in the Fine Arts Department and is the Director of the Film Studies Program. Over the last two decades, he has produced numerous documentary films, dealing with historical events such as World War II and the Holocaust, as well as situations of conflict resolution. His most recent documentary, Who Takes Away the Sins: Witnesses to Clergy Abuse, was co-produced with his wife Susan and premiered this past spring at the Museum of Fine Arts in Boston. He joined the Boston College faculty in 1974.

 

Several years ago I received the Arts Alumni Award for my work in the arts. In my very brief remarks I suggested, “Scratch the surface and you will find in me an EDUCATOR. Over almost four decades at BC [next year will be 40], I have tried to educate through my

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Sun

17

Nov

2013

Vatican Embassy in Damascus Hit by Mortar Shell

by Elinor Mitchell

 

Early this month, a mortar shell hit the Vatican embassy in Damascus, damaging the building’s roof, but injuring none. The shell, which was allegedly fired by Syrian rebels, hit the embassy around 6:30 a.m., long before employees began regular work. According to Fr. Federico Lombardi, “given the hour, there were only material damages, not to people.” No one was hurt, but for Christians in Syria, as well as the people who work at the embassy, the attack had a very real impact.

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Sun

17

Nov

2013

The Vatican Releases Statement on Gatherings Related to Medjugorje

Archbishop Vigano to US bishops Click for full size
Archbishop Vigano to US bishops Click for full size

by Ethan Mack

 

Earlier this month, the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith (CDF) released a statement on conferences and gatherings related to the alleged Medjugorje phenomenon. At the behest of the CDF, the Apostolic Nuncio to the United States, Archbishop Carlo Maria Viganò, sent out a letter to every diocese in the United States, which stated that “clerics and the faithful are not permitted to participate in meetings, conferences, or public celebrations during which the credibility of such 'apparitions' would be taken for granted.”

 

The Medjugorje apparitions are a series of alleged Marian apparitions that have continued until this day in the Bosnian town of Medjugorje. They supposedly began on June 24, 1981 when six young people claimed to have had a vision of the Virgin Mary. Medjugorje quickly became a place like Lourdes and Fatima where thousands of pilgrims visit each year. This prompted an official investigation by the Yugoslavian

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Sun

17

Nov

2013

Catholic and Orthodox Theologians Jointly Ask for an End to Christian Repression in the Middle East

by Gjergji Evangjeli

  

The North American Orthodox-Catholic Theological Consultation Conference, a group of theologians assigned by the Canonical Orthodox Bishops of North and Central America on the Orthodox side and The Canadian and United States Conference of Catholic Bishops on the Catholic side, released a statement on October 26 condemning the sectarian violence against Christians in the Middle East and calling for continued support from the leaders of both Churches and the leaders of countries in North America and beyond to end the oppression of Christians in Egypt, Iraq, Syria, Lebanon and Palestine.

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Sun

17

Nov

2013

Most Rev. Joseph E. Kurtz becomes President of USCCB

Archbishop Kurtz
Archbishop Kurtz

by Jay Chin

 

The Archbishop of Louisville, Kentucky, Joseph E. Kurtz, has been chosen to succeed Timothy Cardinal Dolan as President of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops. The election was held at their General Assembly, which ran from November 11-14 in Baltimore. He ran against nine other nominees for the position and won 53% of the vote (125 votes). The second largest amount of votes were for Daniel Cardinal DiNardo of the Archdiocese of Galveston-Huston, Texas, with 10% (25 votes). DiNardo was soon after elected Vice President in the third round of voting, garnering 63% of the votes (147 votes) against Philadelphia’s Archbishop Charles Chaput’s 37% (87 votes).

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Sun

17

Nov

2013

Pope Francis Brings Attention to the Global Issue of Human Trafficking

by Margo Borders

 

Pope Francis held a Vatican workshop on November 2-3 called “Trafficking in Human Beings: Modern Slavery.” According to EWTN, the workshop was jointly hosted by the Pontifical Council for the Sciences and the World Federation of the Catholic Medical Association. Experts gathered to discuss the issue and “examine human trafficking and modern slavery in order to establish the real state of this phenomenon and an agenda to combat this heinous crime,” according to the conference organizers.

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Sat

09

Nov

2013

No Christ Without the Cross

by Mark Hertenstein

Mark is a Senior Staff Columnist; he writes our monthly "Protestant Perspective" column.

 

One of the things I detest the most is hearing from Christians that “God meets me where I am.” To quote Joel Osteen, who builds entire sermons and a corporate message of health-wealth gospel in his books (not unlike the indulgence sellers of old), “You are accepted by God.” Yes, he confirmed that he means everyone in a later interview.

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Thu

07

Nov

2013

John Allen Speaks on the Francis Papacy

by Margo Borders

 

On Wednesday, October 30, John Allen, Senior Correspondent at The National Catholic Reporter, presented a talk on Pope Francis as part of the Church in the 21st Century Center’s “Living Catholicism” series. Allen is the author of seven books on the Catholic Church and also serves as the senior Vatican analyst for CNN. He spoke about the “Francis Effect,” the three emerging pillars of Pope Francis’ papacy, and the public’s resistance and reaction to Pope Francis.

 

Allen began by speaking about Pope Francis’ popular appeal. He cited a Pew Forum poll about Pope Francis conducted six months into his papacy, which revealed that only four percent of American Catholics have an unfavorable view of the pope.

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Thu

07

Nov

2013

Please Consider Donating to the Military Archdiocese

by Ethan Mack

Ethan is Executive Editor and a Senior Staff Columnist.

 

This Sunday, November 10, there will be a national collection held for the Archdiocese for the Military Services. The Archdiocese for the Military Services (AMS) is a Catholic diocese established in 1985 by Pope John Paul II. Its mission is to tend to the pastoral needs of Catholic men and women in the military and provide them with the sacraments. AMS sponsors all Catholic chaplains in the military and aids them in providing these essential services to those in uniform throughout the world.

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