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Life Arts    H4'ed 7/30/13

Fresh Air from an Austrian Priest

By       (Page 1 of 3 pages)   8 comments
Message Suzana Megles


I admired, respected, and loved Blessed Pope John XXIII.   He was my idea of a true leader of the Catholic Church.   He was famous for ushering in the Second Vatican II Council-- hoping to bring fresh air into a church that badly needed  it.  Sadly, he didn't live to see his reforms instituted. And  I don't believe that the two Popes who followed him tried or  even wanted to institute them.  


Pope Francis has declared him a saint based on his merits  of opening the Second Vatican Council --thereby bypassing the  traditionally required second miracle.  Both he and John  Paul II are expected to be canonised by the end of 2013.


I believe that Pope Francis seems to be of the same ilk as  the roly poly John XXIII.  For a certainty, his style is  winning many hearts.  I can't tell you the surprise and  happiness I experienced when I found out that he had  chosen the name Francis.  I only pray that he will try to  live up to the charismas and legacies of this beautiful and  compassionate saint. 


It seems to me that the Franciscan Order has not embraced  Francis' love and concern for ALL God's creatures, which includes  the animals. Whether Pope Francis will is yet to be seen, but  I have genuine hope that he will.  




This past week I was delighted to learn that Father Helmut  Schuller of Austria had given a talk to 150 attentive but  basically subdued listeners at the Cleveland City Club. I so  admired him for doing this because, in my opinion, Cleveland  is basically conservative in their views.  However, this was  his second talk in the area.  The night before this, the 6 0-year- old priest had addressed 500 people in Independence, Ohio.


He was invited to a three-week, 15-city tour in the United  States sponsored by 10 U.S. liberal Catholic reform groups,  which included Lakewood-based FutureChurch.  Sr. Chritine Schenk  is the executive director of FutureChurch and she said she  supports Schuller's message because it contains the same  issues her group and the other liberal organizations believe in. 


Schuller's message is called "The Catholic Tipping Point."  The Austrian priest told the Cleveland City Club audience that while  female priests, married priests, and same-sex marriage tolerance  may not be compatible with the present Roman Catholic church's  teachings, these reformations to church doctrine are possible  solutions for the growing priest shortage. 

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I have been concerned about animal suffering ever since
I received my first puppy Peaches in 1975. She made me take a good look at the animal kingdom and I was shocked to see how badly we treat so many animals. At 77, I've been a vegan for the (more...)
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