Arts

Christianity's changing face

{mosimage}Christianity and Ethnicity in Canada. edited by Paul Bramadat and David Seljak (University of Toronto Press, softcover, 448 pages, $49.95).

Canada’s churches no longer look or talk the way they once did. The once predominantly Anglo-Celtic membership of the United Church, an organization that viewed itself as a potential national church for Canada when it was established in 1925, is now complemented by large Taiwanese and Hungarian congregations. Many Catholic parishes in major cities now have a significant Filipino presence.

Hope for Hollywood

{mosimage}In Hollywood, the mission field is as fertile as the wheat fields in Saskatchewan — or so you might hear from Mark Matthews, the founder of Bibles and Brew.

Bibles and Brew is a group of about 15 men who meet bi-weekly in the throes of Hollywood culture to discuss what it means to be Catholic and to support each other in the faith.

The true joy of Lourdes

{mosimage}The Miracle of Lourdes: A Message of Healing and Hope by John Lochran (St. Anthony Messenger Press, softcover, 134 pages, $12.95).

To commemorate the 150th anniversary of the miracle of Lourdes, where Our Lady appeared to French peasant girl Bernadette Soubirous, Fr. John Lochran retells the familiar story with deep insight and new appreciation.

ROM to host Dead Sea Scrolls

{mosimage}TORONTO - The Royal Ontario Museum has reached out to Israel and back to the beginnings of Christianity and Judaism as we know it to bring the Dead Sea Scrolls to Toronto.

Some of the most significant pieces of the 2,000-year-old writings will be on display at the ROM from June 27, 2009, to Jan. 3, 2010. Scrolls on display will include passages of Genesis, Deuteronomy, Psalms, Isaiah, the War Scroll, the Community Rule and the Messianic Apocalypse.

Praising God in song

{mosimage}MISSISSAUGA, Ont. - The 19th International Festival of Religious Song in Mississauga will bring both professional and amateur performances to the stage in competitions this year.

The festival, originally started by members of the Polish Catholic community and promoted by Catholic Radio Toronto, is meant to encourage musical talent, especially for use in praising God. The new professional category this year will provide a place for more established Catholic musicians to compete, whereas everyone previously competed on the same level.

In community we find home

{mosimage}Beyond Homelessness: Christian Faith in a Culture of Displacement by Steven Bouma-Prediger and Brian J. Walsh (Wm.B. Eerdman’s Publishing, softcover, $27.99).

Stone by stone, as he laboured to build his summer house on Lake Geneva, the Swiss psychoanalyst Carl Jung came to recognize that home — with its design, rooms, windows, corners and doors — mirrored the human psyche, with all its needs, shadows and spiritual longings. Home is foundational to individual identity and therefore acknowledged as one of our universal human rights.

Gratitude keeps our society human

{mosimage}TORONTO - Margaret Visser is much too civilized to tell about the incident which sparked her new book, The Gift of Thanks: The Roots, Persistence and Paradoxical Meanings of a Social Ritual.

“There is a story, but I’m not telling it because it’s so horrible,” she told The Catholic Register.

Creation through Franciscan eyes

{mosimage}Care for Creation: A Franciscan Spirituality of the Earth by Ilia Delio, O.S.F, Keith Douglas Warner, O.F.M., and Pamela Wood (St. Anthony Messenger Press, 226 pages, softcover, $18.95).

This book made me nervous, but also had me excited. My Franciscan community has studied and reflected on cosmic theology and eco-spirituality this past year in preparation for our general chapter this month. Through it all, there was for me a need to maintain a sound doctrinal understanding of our faith as Roman Catholic religious.

Salt+Light documents cardinal's struggle

The compelling story of a charismatic Vietnamese church leader imprisoned for 13 years has evolved into documentary form.

In Road of Hope: The Spiritual Journey of Cardinal Nguyen Van Thuan, Salt + Light Television writer/director David Naglieri unfolds the gripping events that surrounded the cardinal’s life using vivid photos, rare archival footage and interviews with friends and family.

New college to combine arts with spirituality

{mosimage}Living Water College brands itself as the only school of its kind in North America, offering an education combining faith, reason and the arts.

While it plans to officially open its doors next summer, Jeff Gardner, the college’s director of development, said the college is being bombarded with calls from interested students around the world.

Seeing beyond Africa’s problems

{mosimage}African Saints, African Stories: 40 Holy Men and Women by Camille Lewis Brown (St. Anthony Messenger Press, 145 pages, softcover, $14.95).

With good reason, the continent of Africa is often at the centre of Catholic debates pertaining to world affairs and global politics. The haunting shadows of the Rwanda genocide and present realities in places like Darfur and Congo are a constant challenge to the Christian conscience and test the boundaries of our own charity.

Art for AIDS

{mosimage}LONDON, Ont. - When Ontario high school kids get an art lesson from internationally collected, veteran professional artist Hendrikus Bervoets they don’t learn about form, colour, composition and balance.

“We deal with all kinds of social justice issues,” Boervoets told The Catholic Register as he was setting up a new gallery for student work in downtown London, Ont.

Monks corner 'soul' music market

{mosimage}TORONTO - They shoot hoops, surf the Internet and sing Gregorian chants. And they count Pope Benedict XVI as one of their fans.

You could say this group of Austrian monks isn’t your average musical sensation. Their CD Chant: Music for the Soul has rocked the charts in Canada and around the world. During the first month of its Canadian debut in July, the CD ranked second behind Josh Grobin in the Nielsen Canadian SoundScan joint classical cross-over chart. And at one point, it even surpassed pop music powerhouses like Madonna and Amy Winehouse on Britain’s top 10 list.