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An alternative approach embraces complex diversity

This is a tale of two boys, neither of whom could function optimally in a traditional Ontario Catholic high school: uniform, attendance, homework.

A crumbling foundation

As advocates of same-sex marriage celebrated Ireland’s recent referendum, supporters of traditional marriage were left to lament yet another defeat. Meanwhile, I attended the sacramental union of my beautiful sister Alexandra to her dashing husband Michael.

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Nothing so gratifying as the Mass

The Nova Scotia weather turns from rain to sunshine and even to a short flurry of hail on a lazy late-May afternoon. 
The dreary weather lends itself perfectly to an exchange of texts with a good friend.

Patrick Brown would do well sticking to the facts

Pundits and politicians agree: Ontario’s newly minted Progressive Conservative leader Patrick Brown is in a quagmire.

His problem goes something like this: social conservatives got him elected as leader but pro-life, anti-sex-ed voters aren’t nearly enough to bring the new guy victory in a general election. Sooner or later, they say, Brown must abandon his base.

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The Lord assures us, we will not be forsaken

When we lose the great hymns of our past we lose an irrecoverable legacy. Alas as much as we hear “Lord of the Dance” at Mass, such happy-clappy tunes will provide little solace amidst a dark night of the soul.

The will to power won’t solve our difficulties

C.S. Lewis, J.R.R. Tolkien and their colleagues wanted to write fiction that would effectively “evangelize the imagination,” accustoming minds, especially of young people, to the Gospel. Accordingly, Tolkien’s Gandalf is a figure of Jesus the prophet and Lewis’ Aslan is a representation of Christ as both sacrificial victim and victorious king. Happily, the film versions of both The Lord of the Rings and The Chronicles of Narnia have been wildly popular all over the world.

It will take a nation to end modern slavery

By Joy Smith, Catholic Register Special

On New Year’s Day, Pope Francis delivered his annual World Day of Peace message that passionately called for an end to modern-day slavery. The title, “No longer slaves, but brothers and sisters,” is taken from St. Paul’s letter to Philemon. Pope Francis noted that “slavery is rooted in a notion of the human person which allows him or her to be treated as an object” and highlighted the many forms of modern-day slavery, including “persons forced into prostitution, many of whom are minors.”

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A sacrificial gift to make a difference

Parishioners across the Archdiocese of Toronto have always been generous towards the needs of the greater community. Last fall, I noted that the archdiocese would be undertaking the Family of Faith campaign in parishes, and that it was important to maintain support for ShareLife while we contributed to this effort.

The silent majority needs its voice heard on prayer

My God, my God, why have we forsaken thee. Society is hell-bent on downplaying the existence of God, ignoring Him, pushing Him to the sidelines, pretending that He just isn’t real.

The latest volley in the deity war was fired broadside by the Supreme Court of Canada. In mid-April, the country’s highest court ruled unanimously that the practice of Saguenay, Que., city councillors of crossing themselves and spending 20 full seconds in Catholic prayer before conducting official municipal business was out of bounds.

Islam stands with us against blood, violence of terrorism

The words to describe Islamic State atrocities have been all but exhausted. The bloodcurdling images in the news of their attacks stir the deepest resentment and there appears to be no end in sight to their violent activities. All of society feels insecure and vulnerable.  

What exactly did Loyola College win?

Now that I am under no professional obligation to read court decisions, I generally avoid them. The turgid prose, the unctuous self-regard and the complacent sense of judicial superiority I find unpleasant and soporific.