NCR Today

Brother, can you spare a sanctuary?

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Here's an example of responding to a natural disaster:

From The Leaf Chronicle:

Wind, fire, flood — Clarksville has its share of disasters. It also has a strong sense of how to respond to those disasters, demonstrated nowhere more strongly than at Immaculate Conception Catholic Church.

Immaculate Conception most recently came to the aid of Bethlehem United Methodist Church when its Gothic revival, all-wood sanctuary, built in 1900, burned down after being struck by lightning on July 15, 2009.

Bethlehem wasn't about to give up. Members first set up worship under two large shade trees at 1324 Gholson Road, and then spent the next few months trying out various housing options.

Then Immaculate Conception offered a sanctuary — literally.

Read more here.

The gambler in chief?

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"The deficit/default imbroglio that ended in the deficit-reduction agreement on August 2 has pretty much squelched that hope" that as President Obama would "press a progressive agenda," Margaret O'Brien Steinfels writes over on the Commonweal blog (See The Obama Gamble).

She cites James Kloppenberg, who wrote in Reading Obama, Obama’s commitment to “compromise and painstaking consensus building…represent a calculated risk as political strategy,” and admits “it is a gamble he may lose.”

Steinfels then throws down the gauntlet: "The president has fourteen months to demonstrate that he has not lost the gamble, or to come up with a better, less-accommodating strategy."

St. John's alum Bradley wins PGA Championship

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Keegan Bradley, an alum of St. John's University, Queens, New York, won the PGA Championship Golf Tournament yesterday in dramatic fashion.

From the New York Post:

Don't let the look fool you.

Don't be lulled by the rosy cheeks and the aw-shucks wide-eyed look into thinking Keegan Bradley is soft.

The kid never quits.

Just ask Jason Dufner. He had had a five-shot lead on him with three holes to play and watched helplessly on the third and final hole of their playoff as Bradley, a PGA Tour rookie playing in his first major championship, tapped in a two-foot putt to win the PGA Championship at Atlanta Athletic Club.

Just ask Bradley's caddie, Steve "Pepsi" Hale, who said: "The guy's the gutsiest player I've ever worked for. He's got no quit in him. Ever."

Just ask Frank Darby, who coached him for four years on the St. John's golf team.

"Nothing fazes him," Darby said last night.

News bites

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I became a media literacy education specialist because I started paying attention to the news. Now I am a recovering news junkie because after Tim Russert died, no one seems civil and especially I don't enjoy the Sunday morning talk shows any more. The news isn't what it used to be; it's infotainment at best.

However some news bits and bytes get my attention because they "bite" -- though for different reasons.

Politicians that blame the "lame stream" media get a lot of broadcasting sound bytes that can take a politicians' meaning out of context -- or not. It depends on one's perspective I think.

Here's what I heard on the news yesterday and again this morning:

Morning Briefing

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Home sweet shopping cart, for a moment at least, 'the universe bends toward justice.'

Pope planning 'radical' changes to Irish Catholic Church. Set to slash number of dioceses, force bishops to retire?

Pittsburgh D.A. ends clergy abuse inquiry

Australila Attorney general conisders Catholic abuse inquiry

Retro-Actives: The religious practices of Millennial Catholics, 20-somethings are embracing old parts of the Catholic tradition

Good guys wear black

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This summer I’ve read articles about a priest accused of secretly helping a convicted mob killer, of embezzling money from their parishes and, of course, of abusing children or covering up abuse.

I was about to cancel my “Catholic” Google Alert when I happily found this article in the New York Times about the reform group Call to Action. Quoted right at the top is my former pastor, Father Bill Kenneally, boldly declaring that he was among 150 priests to sign a petition protesting the removal of Maryknoll Father Roy Bourgeois for his support of women’s ordination.

According to the article:

Belleville Bishop finally surrenders

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An 11-year battle ended Wednesday when sex-abuse victim James Wisniewski was handed two checks totaling $6.3 million.

Belleville Bishop Edward Braxton finally gave in after a jury found the diocese guilty of fraudulent concealment in the case of serial abuser Raymond Kownacki, a diocesan priest accused of molesting children and youth in more than five parishes during the '60s, '70s and '80s.

On this day: St. Jane Frances de Chantal

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On this day we celebrate the feast of St. Jane Frances de Chantal, founder, with St. Francis de Sales, of the Visitation Order.

After her husband was killed in a hunting accident, Jane Frances devoted herself to caring for her children, her father-in-law, her servants and tenant farmers, and the poor of the vicinity.

After a dream of the spiritual director she had prayed to find, she attended a sermon at Sainte Chapelle in Dijon. There she recognized the preacher, Francis de Sales, the Bishop of Geneva, as the man in her dream. He, too, had dreamed of Jane Frances in advance of their meeting and of the religious order they would found.

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In This Issue

December 2-15, 2016

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