Returning from a recent visit to the Holy Land, Winnipeg Archbishop Richard Gagnon compared the Palestinian territory of Gaza to a prison.

It’s true there’s a challenge, to say the least, in seeing the “bigger picture” when the picture’s focus is life and death itself.

We Catholics are at times indifferent about those things that should deeply concern us but obsessed by those things that should be water off our backs. 

The old teapot is steeped in history, fortitude and faith. If it could talk, whistle or chatter, what a tale this 200-year-old china cauldron might tell.

The phrase “thoughts and prayers” has become so common it has its own Wikipedia page. The page outlines in detail the use of the expression by prominent public figures in times of crisis — most notably following natural disasters or American gun violence — and also offers both a criticism and defence of this practice. 

I was driving to Nova Scotia with my wife Ria several years ago when we stopped at a garden centre. Since I cannot tell a weed from a wallflower, I hung out in the knickknack section where people can find garden signs that say things like, “I don’t remember planting this.”

When Pope Celestine V resigned as pope in 1294, he removed his papal garb and intended to return to life as a hermit. However, his successor, Pope Boniface VIII, placed him under house arrest where he remained until his death 10 months later. 

Sacrificial example

I want to applaud and fall down on my knees in thanksgiving for the courage and faithfulness of the Delta Hospice Society in British Columbia for not caving in to government pressure to conform to the evil agenda of MAiD (Medical Assistance in Dying).  

The operators of a small hospice outside of Vancouver are standing like David against a government Goliath in a showdown to block assisted suicide and euthanasia from crossing their threshold. We support their cause and applaud their courage.

When Pope Francis accepted the resignation of the bishop of Philadelphia on Jan. 23, some in media were painting it as pushing the pontiff’s so-called agenda aimed at moving the Church away from traditionalists.

Resistance is an old friend of mine. She knows the arc of my back and places a comforting hand on my shoulder to let me know I am not alone. But three times in the same week, I heard familiar words from Deuteronomy: “See, I have set before you life and prosperity, death and adversity. Choose life.”