One way to view world history could be through a lens of justice. In courts, on battlefields, in parliaments and in many other settings where humans interact, justice has been a constant pursuit — but remains elusive in so many ways.

No memories are so sweet as those which cluster round the Infant Saviour’s festive season.

Hopes dashed

I was filled with hope when I read that the federal government plans to drop the contentious anti-abortion test for summer job funding. But on further reading, my hopes were dashed. 

In order to receive summer-job funding for students, groups no longer have to attest to supporting reproductive rights, but the new wording is just as restrictive and just as vile. Applicants must declare they won’t work to infringe on any Canadian legal rights. 

Keep in mind that Canada has no laws on abortion. Abortion is not illegal but there are no laws or statutes giving women the legal right to kill their unborn child.

Other changes still deny pro-life groups from accessing summer-job funding. Any project or summer job that tries to “restrict access for a woman’s ability to access sexual or reproductive health services” (a euphemism for abortion) will be disqualified.

I see this as a ploy to divide faith-based groups from pro-life groups. Trudeau and the Liberals are concerned about public opinion before the next election. This is just a way to appease faith groups until the election. Then, should the Liberals win, we can expect the full weight of government to come down on faith groups.

Margaret Mountain,

North Gower, Ont.


Far too late to save the summer jobs of thousands of students who went unemployed last summer, the government has finally conceded a heavy handed edict to link a public grant with Liberal Party ideology was a dumb idea.

Too much intrusion

Re: Lay chaplains (Letter to the Editor, Dec. 2):

There are two aspects of Mr. Klaassen’s letter which deserve comment. The first is his suggestion for lay chaplains is in direct contradiction of the Code of Canon Law c.564: “A chaplain is a priest to whom is entrusted in a stable manner the pastoral care . . .

The second addresses his statement: “But the military chaplaincy ought to be civilian.” Submitting to this contradiction to the Church’s authority would be a weakening of the Church’s authority. There is far too much of that intrusion into and against the Church already, isn’t there?

David A. Hogg

Scarborough, Ont.


As Parliament awaits the imminent arrival of a report on assisted suicide that may make a bad situation even worse, it’s worth noting some chilling stories from the first countries to legalize medically induced death. This could be our future.

A peacemaker

Re: Reflections of a nation in a time of grief (Nov. 18):

Fr. J.A. McDonagh’s account of the events following John F. Kennedy’s assassination was remarkable. Reflecting on the tragedy, he wrote: “Nothing will be the same again until merciful time has weighed all the evidence produced.” 

Canadians generally prefer that people wait their turn, but compassion sometimes demands that we unite and jog someone to the front of the line. That time has come in the case of Asia Bibi. We should take her hand and hurry her to save haven in Canada.

Measurable standards

Re: Great Expectations (Nov. 11):

Director of education Ab Falconi from York Catholic District School Board is proud that Ontario Catholic schools graduate a higher percentage of students than public schools. On the surface this sounds really good, but what does it actually mean? Do we know that it’s not a case of removing the net so that every student can play tennis? 

Following reports of hideous conduct at St. Michael’s College School the administration acted swiftly to expel eight students and establish an independent review to examine how such shame could darken the corridors of the renowned all-boys Catholic school.

It is noble to mark the World Day of the Poor with gifts of charity, but Pope Francis has challenged Catholics to go much further than that. He asks us to observe Nov. 18 by making a serious examination of conscience “to see if we are truly capable of hearing the cry of the poor.”