Canada celebrates diversity on June 21st, June 24th, and July 1st
Demographics of CanadaStatistics Canada conducts a country-wide census that collects demographic data every five years on the first and sixth year of each decade. The 2016 Canadian Census enumerated a total population of 35,151,728, an increase of around 5.0 percent over the 2011 figure. Between 2011 and May 2016, Canada's population grew by 1.7 million people, with immigrants accounting for two-thirds of the increase. Between 1990 and 2008, the population increased by 5.6 million, equivalent to 20.4 percent overall growth. The main drivers of population growth are immigration and, to a lesser extent, natural growth.
Canada has one of the highest per-capita immigration rates in the world, driven mainly by economic policy and, to a lesser extent, family reunification. In 2019, a total of 341,180 immigrants were admitted to Canada, mainly from Asia.
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are in the midst of celebrating our diverse Canadian
heritage. June 21st is National Indigenous Peoples Day, June
24th is St. Jean Baptiste Day, a celebration of the history and culture
of French Canadians, and July 1st is Canada Day. We
are a multi-cultural, multi-ethnic, multi-faith country.
is the ConnectR Reconciliation Challenge?
Organizations and individuals may also join the ConnectR Challenge Facebook Group to share experiences and receive updates to help guide and support their journey. This group will provide the link to several scheduled video calls with Indigenous Elders, leaders, and youth for discussions to facilitate learning and reflection on Indigenous issues. Those not on Facebook may email firstname.lastname@example.org to be added to a mailing list.
ConnectR Reconciliation Challenge is an initiative of Reconciliation
Saskatoon – a community of over 115 organizations, non-profits,
businesses and partners who have come together towards one mission: to
initiate a citywide conversation about Reconciliation and provide
opportunities for everyone to engage in the Truth
and Reconciliation Commission’s Calls to Action.
the facebook group referenced above (which I joined), I
learned of the book, Me
and White Supremacy by Laylaf F. Saad.
It is a step by step reflection process for people of white privilege
to examine their racist thought and behaviours.
[Jane Kryzanowski, Regina, SK is bishop for RCWP Canada]
Can a Woman Be Catholic?
Joan Chittister, mailchi.mp/benetvision | June 2020
Slowly, slowly I began to ask myself a different question: Could a woman really be a Catholic at all? The fullness of the faith was surely not meant for us. And that, according to Roman catechesis, was because God wanted it that way, and much as they might like, they could not do otherwise. So surely God, too, does not really want us. Not really. Not completely. So why would a woman be there?
The answer came out of the stuff of the question itself: God. I no more believed that God made women half human, half capable of grace, half available to the divine than I believed that no one else except Catholics went to heaven or that those who were not white were not fully human or that we could perpetrate whatever violence we chose on anyone else we named lesser than ourselves and call it holy. I did not believe in a God who created half the human race in order to reject it.
Theologian proposes Church overhaul idea of Sunday Mass “obligation”
Mada Jurado, novenanews.com | May 29, 2020
A theologian has proposed the Church overhaul the idea of a Sunday Mass “obligation” incumbent on Catholics.
– “Tragicomical” that bishops dispensed faithful from Sunday duty during COVID-19
– “Obligation” hardly fits into faith as personal “friendship” with Jesus
– Argentine archbishop suggested Sunday duty “could fall” as result of pandemic
JBK Happy Colou r
Calls to Action: Church Apologies and Reconciliation
58) We call upon the Pope to issue an apology to Survivors, their families, and communities for the Roman Catholic Church’s role in the spiritual, cultural, emotional, physical, and sexual abuse of First Nations, Inuit, and Métis children in Catholic-run residential
schools. We call for that apology to be similar to the 2010 apology issued to Irish victims of abuse and to occur within one year of the issuing of this Report and to be delivered by the Pope in Canada.
59) We call upon church parties to the Settlement Agreement to develop ongoing education strategies to ensure that their respective congregations learn about their church’s role in colonization, the history and legacy of residential schools, and why apologies to former residential school students, their families, and communities were necessary.
60) We call upon leaders of the church parties to the Settlement Agreement and all other faiths, in collaboration with Indigenous spiritual leaders, Survivors, schools of theology, seminaries, and other religious training centres, to develop and teach curriculum
for all student clergy, and all clergy and staff who work in Aboriginal communities, on the need to respect Indigenous spirituality in its own right, the history and legacy of residential schools and the roles of the church parties in that system, the history and legacy of religious conflict in Aboriginal families and communities, and the responsibility that churches have to mitigate such conflicts and prevent spiritual violence.
61) We call upon church parties to the Settlement Agreement, in collaboration with Survivors and representatives of Aboriginal organizations, to establish permanent funding to Aboriginal people for:
i. Community-controlled healing and reconciliation projects.
ii. Community-controlled culture- and language-revitalization projects.
iii. Community-controlled education and relationship-building projects.
iv. Regional dialogues for Indigenous spiritual leaders and youth to discuss Indigenous spirituality, self-determination, and reconciliation.
Full 536-page Summary of the Final Report of the Truth and Reconciliation Commission of Canada
2010: Women’s Ordination Worldwide stands in solidarity with Catholic women in Ireland who call for a widespread boycott of Mass on Sunday, September 26, 2010. The boycott is initiated by 81 year old Jennifer Sleeman from Clonakilty, Co Cork who calls on women to stay away from Mass in protest at their treatment as ‘second-class citizens’ by the Church. The boycott receives substantial support including from the newly formed Association of Catholic Priests in Ireland. Those not wishing to stay away from mass but wanting to support the action wear green armbands to mass. WOW’s press release is here: WOW Supports Irish Boycott of Mass: Sept. 26, 2010
2010: TIME magazine names the work for women’s ordination as one of its top ten religious news stories of the year. Members of Women’s Ordination Worldwide are featured.
2011: In February, Augustinian priest and professor at Boston College School of Theology and Ministry John J. Shea sends a letter to his provincial, Fr. Anthony Genovese, and two of his superiors informing them he is stepping aside from active ministry until women are ordained priests in the church. In May, he receives a canonical warning from Genovese accusing him of violating Ordinatio Sacerdotalis -- the 1994 Pope John Paul II Apostolic Letter stating, “The church has no authority whatsoever to confer priestly ordination on women and that this judgment is to be definitively held by all the Church’s faithful” -- and asking him not to speak publicly on the issue. Shea agrees not to speak publicly against the official teaching of the church. In 2012, Boston College refuses to renew his teaching contract.
2011: Women’s Ordination Worldwide stands in solidarity with 225 courageous theologians from Germany, Austria and Switzerland who publicly name the ordination of women and open dialogue about structures of participation as urgent reforms needed in the Catholic Church. Women’s Ordination Worldwide calls 2011 a ‘Year of Departure' for the Church: ‘Let this Year of Departure be the year when the Church parts ways with the archaic arguments and excuses used to exclude women from priesthood. We urge our Church leaders to enter into dialogue both with women who experience a call to priesthood and with priests and laity who believe that that call comes from God.’ WOW’s press release is here: WOW Congratulates German Theologians for Support of Women’s Ordination - Feb. 24, 2011
2011: Swiss Bishop Markus Büchel calls for far-reaching reforms in the Catholic Church. He speaks openly for women’s ordination saying, ‘We must search for steps that lead there… I could imagine that women’s diaconate could be such a step.’ Pointing out that discussion about women’s ordination has not been permitted for a good while, he say, ‘We can’t afford this anymore.’ Regarding priesthood for women, Büchel says, ‘We can pray that the Holy Spirit enables us to read the signs of the times.’ The statement is considered explosive. Schweizer Bischof für Frauen als Priesterinnen
2011: April - In a moving ceremony at Vienna’s UN-City Church, 21 years after the fall of the Iron Curtain, the largest and best-known underground Church in the former Czechoslovakia – called Koinótés — founded by the late Bishop Felix Maria Davidek – receives the Herbert-Haag Foundation Award for Freedom in the Church. The award is bestowed annually on persons and institutions ‘for courageous actions within Christianity’. At the prize-giving ceremony in Vienna, Bishop Davidek’s Koinótés is for the first time publicly recognised for what it was – a valiant effort to assure the Church’s survival under persecution. Present at the ceremony is Ludmila Javorova, the first woman priest ordained by Bishop Davidek. At the ceremony she says, ‘The work has been begun. Others must continue it. Even if the Vatican considers the matter closed, it is my firm belief that at some point in the future this dossier will be reopened.' (Christa Pongratz-Lippitt, The Tablet, April 9, 2011).
2011: Women’s Ordination Worldwide stands in solidarity with Australia’s Bishop William Morris who is forced into early retirement by the Vatican because of his suggestion to open dialogue about women’s ordination. Morris’s pastorally sensitive suggestion is made out of his concern for growing numbers of Catholics being deprived of the Eucharist due to priest shortages. WOW issues a press release here: WOW Supports Australia’s Bishop William Morris - May 25, 2011. Bishop Morris’s removal happened in the context of Cardinal Bernard Law being given a post in Rome (and thereby escaping prosecution in the USA for protecting pedophile priests). Running parallel to this was the news of two bishops named in Ireland’s Murphy Commission whose resignations were rejected by the Vatican.The Murphy Commission found that despite sexual abuse being 'endemic' in boys' institutions, the church hierarchy protected perpetrators and allowed them to take up new positions teaching other children after their original victims had been sworn to secrecy.
2011: Cardinal Jose da Cruz Policarpo, seventy-five year old Patriarch of Lisbon, who has just been confirmed for another two years as head of Portugal’s Conference of Catholic Bishops, publicly states there are no fundamental theological obstacles to the ordination of women. At one time considered a contender for the papacy, he is immediately called to Rome for a meeting with Pope Benedict XVI. On return home, Cardinal Policarpo retracts his statement.
2011: Women’s Ordination Worldwide travels to Rome for a public demonstration with Father Roy Bourgeois. Two members of the WOW delegation and Roy Bourgeois are detained by police. The documentary film Pink Smoke Over the Vatican has its Italian premiere at Casa del Cinema in Rome. The documentary features (among others) the compelling stories of heroes in the work for women’s ordination, Patricia Fresen (excommunicated 3 times on account of her work in the movement) and Roy Bourgeois — a Nobel Peace Prize nominee, recipient of Purple Heart for his service during a tour of duty in Vietnam, and priest who is excommunicated and expelled from priesthood on account of his support for women’s ordination.
[This is the seventh excerpt of a timeline we are serializing here. For the full timeline, see the Women's Ordination Worldwide website.]
The end of clericalism -- we are getting there
Phyllis Zagano, ncronline.org | Apr 21, 2020
As the human race joins the rest of the planet in a struggle for survival, the church is also trying to find its footing.
For too long — say, 800 to 1,000 years — the sacramental life of the church has been under priestly lock and key.
Italian Church reform group criticises revival during coronavirus of theologically “problematic” indulgences
Cameron Doody, novenanews.com | April 28, 2020
An Italian Church reform group has criticised the revival during the coronavirus of theologically “problematic” and “ecumenically unfortunate” indulgences.
– A practice “extraneous to the feelings of most Christian people”
– Against modern ecumenism and the spirit of Vatican II
– The coronavirus pandemic, a chance for the Church to rethink sin and forgiveness
German laypeople cry: “Anyone who is against the ordination of women is against the equality of women and men”
Mada Jurado, novenanews.com | June 15, 2020
“Anyone who is against the admission of women to all ordained ministries is also against the genuine equality of rights between women and men”, German laypeople have cried.
– “Just as there is no such thing as ‘a little bit pregnant’, there is no such thing as ‘a little bit equal'”
– Church affirmation of equality means nothing without affirmation of equal access to ordination
– “Who can still take such the Magisterium seriously today?”
The history of Canadian slavery goes back 400 years
Kamyar Razavi, globalnews.ca | June 12, 2020
View 7 videos on being black in Canada
Dear beloved friends in America,
I reach out to hail you and your spirit, thankful for you in my life, admiring of your consistent, longterm work for justice and mercy and grieving the suffering upon suffering your country endures. We Canadians take note of the pain of your people, one crisis after another, and look to our own woes and unfinished work. As the Harvard Business Review noted: "It doth make monks of us all." (Change that to 'contemplatives').
Now I must get out my cardboard and make my sign for our Peterborough "Black Lives Matter" gathering tomorrow. What I will write is "I understand that I will never understand. Nevertheless. I will stand". Don't know the source. Love and blessings.
[Rosemary Ganley, Peterborough, ON]
There really is a God. In time people, especially male clergy people,will get it. Do you remember the Childhood story "The Emperor's New Clothes"? Most folks did not admit to seeing the naked emperor. This is the same as the truth that the patriarchy does not see the truth of the naked injustice of banning Women Priests. As you may remember a young child said,"He's got no clothes on." The truth was told.
[Fran McDonald, Fort Saskatchewan, AB]
One definite area where we as Canadians fail to realize and acknowledge our own racism, whether personally or systemically, can be clearly seen when it comes to our indigenous peoples.
We recently had three rallies against racism. Two of the rallies dealt specifically with Black Lives Matter. Hundreds of people came out. The other rally, which I understood was largely, but not solely, intended to speak to racism against indigenous peoples in our city, and province, and country was attended by a mere handful of people in comparison with the other rallies. This itself speaks to our blindness, and our refusal to acknowledge, our racism toward indigenous peoples in our communities and on reserves.
Our Chief of Police is one of the few in the forefront of leaders who is speaking out against this racism, and who is putting both his words and his actions into practice.
[Judith Pellerin, Regina, SK]
In a recent interview, Professor (Fr.) Bryan Massingale of New York’s Fordham university cited St. Thomas Aquinas’ statement on sins of anger: Aquinas said that righteous anger in the face of injustice is not a sin, but a virtue. Fr. Massingale said that anger at racial prejudice is therefore a virtue. He further said that righteous anger in such a case requires that we act upon it. Fr. Massingale cited a hypothetical case where at a family dinner, someone makes a prejudicial remark and we say nothing. In that case, he said, we are complicit in that attitude, though perhaps we only remain silent in order to keep peace. In that instance, he said, keeping silent is unjust and is sinful.
I would take his statements to their logical conclusion and say: Any injustice, whether racial, age related, gender, or other, requires our righteous anger.
I cite the recent Global TV report of the harassment of Jon Cornish and his wife who, when walking in their neighbourhood, were harassed and told to leave by a woman. They tried to ignore her, but she confronted them by obstructing them with her car and told them to get out of the area, because they were not welcome in her neighbourhood. (Jon Cornish is of mixed black and white blood.) Global did not follow up on the story and did not name the woman, or even the community where it occurred. I have to say that by being a bystander in the case, Global was complicit in the prejudicial tirade, and if we as citizens of this city do nothing, we too are complicit.
I will go further and say that gender prejudice in the Catholic church is just as sinful and all Catholics, from the pope, cardinals, bishops, priests and laity, are complicit and sinful if we do nothing to bring God’s creation of men and women as equals into reality in our church. The Catholic and Orthodox churches are now almost the only Christian denominations that still, whatever is claimed, consider women as less than equal with men and we must, right now, act with righteous anger to rectify this injustice, or live in sin.
[Gene Swain, Catholic male, Calgary, AB]
Now this is who God is!
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