Saturday, 7 September 2013

Fasting for Syria; voting for the common good...

Today the Pope has called on Catholics around the world to fast and pray for peace in Syria.

The Pope and the Australian Bishops: what's new!

But has your diocese and/or parish/community made any effort to tell you about it?

A Country Priest has a copy of the Nuncio's letter to the ACBC on the issue, so presumably all dioceses are well aware of the event.

But on the face of it responses from dioceses are, as for past such calls (remember Pope Francis' call for Adoration and Pope Benedict's call for vigil for life) patchy at best.

Certainly my own Canberra-Goulburn has nothing whatsoever on its website or email news (albeit something on facebook, a form of social media that I for one have mostly abandoned) so far as I can see (the only event listed in the calendar for today is a Mass for Mother Teresa).

Presumably the local mob were too busy putting out ecumenical press statements on asylum seekers, essentially a non-issue in the Federal election given that the two major parties are essentially on the same (admittedly awful) page.  Personally I would have thought some pre-emptive action to prevent the refugee situation in Syria getting even worse would be a more practical priority.

Nor is there anything on the local Latin Mass website, or the websites of either of the parishes nearest to me.

Pretty sad for a Church that has spent the last week congratulating itself itself (including giving an award for leading platform of dissent Eureka Street) on its conventional and social media engagement.

In fact the most publicity for the event I've seen comes from the Brisbane Archdiocese - where Archbishop Coleridge has shifted the day of fasting away from the same day as the rest of the world to next Friday instead (apparently voting and fasting are incompatible up North).

**There is a statement on Syria signed by a number of leading Australians you might want to take a look at here.

Vote early....

The other event of the day is of course the Federal election, and polls are open in the Eastern States.

The result in the lower house seems likely to be clear cut (viz a landslide for the Coalition, despite some last minute stumbles).

Where your vote can really make a difference, though, is the Senate.

There is a good chance the Greens will get their just deserts.

Still, history suggests that a Coalition majority in the Senate would be a disaster (remember Howard and Work Choices).

Unfortunately it seems that some very strange preference deals indeed have been done in several States, and some very good pro-life candidates look like losing out to the nutty fringe - so do look carefully at who you are voting for! 


A Canberra Observer said...

+Coleridge at least shows that he can take action. The Cardinal seems to have disappeared into his shell.

Sad that we lost him (+Coleridge) here in Canberra. The naughty school boys (aka al the local clergy who coun't stand having a bishop who might actually tell them what they should be doing) are obviously still too busy rejoicing in the refectory to worry about silly old Pope Francis (even if he is much more of a liberal poster boy)

Martin S. said...

I understand the constraints establishment media are under, or as Philip Rieff would say 'spiritually buried' under. But can I say, the award pdf you linked to made me sad.

Shrugging it off as confirmation there is little on offer from the Australian Catholic leadership.

As for Eureka Street's push for gay marriage[sic] RR Reno takes their measure with aplomb.

Freedom for the rich and influential, everyone else loses very badly.

St Joseph pray for us.
Mary Help of Christians pray for us.

P.s. The Wagga diocese may be slow re: fast with universal church because of Bishop Brennan's funeral yesterday.

C said...

It was a beautiful day at Marian Valley, Canungra (Gold Coast hinterland) today with celebrations for the birthday of the Blessed Virgin Mary (in advance of tomorrow).

It started with a holy hour, the rosary, confessions then mass celebrated by Archbishop Coleridge. It was a beautiful OF mass with much of the mass sung, altar rails so that people had the option to easily receive kneeling, incense, traditionally dressed altar servers and so on. It finished with a Eucharistic procession.

Anyway, the point I'm getting to is that Pope Francis' request for today was mentioned several times and we prayed for world peace, peace in the Holy Land and peace in Syria.

A last minute prayer pilgrimage was organised in Brisbane though I think it was probably very small due to it being last minute.

I feel so lucky to have + Coleridge in Brisbane and I know that it comes at Canberra's expense. I will pray that a holy, courageous and dedicated archbishop is chosen soon for your diocese.

I really appreciate your blog so thank y for the work y do and I hope that you're feeling better soon.