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Thought from Fr. Colm - 18th November

We are going to St. Leonard’s again for our Christmas Masses. Only one of two opportunities to worship together as a parish. Thank you again for your support. As you will see in the bulletin, please let me know if you are not available for ministries of reading, or Holy Communion. We welcome Anthony Blundell, who will be received into the Church this weekend at the 11.00am Mass at St. Joseph’s. “The accusation against the Church for being either right or left wing tells you more about the contemporary political assumptions than about the political inclination of Catholicism. The Church will seem both “right wing” (in promising the traditional family, opposing abortion, euthanasia, embryonic research, etc) and “left wing” (in advocating the rights of minorities, social justice, active state support for the poorest, etc), depending on the political bias of the one accusing. The same bias afflicts Catholics. There are pro-life Catholics who think Catholic Social teaching is “socialist”, and pro-social justice Catholics who think pro-life causes are right wing.The Church will always be accused of “interfering” or trying to “impose its view when the critic disagrees with its stance; but the same critic will say nothing when the Church has intervened politically on a matter with which he or she agrees. And if the Church had stayed silent, the critic will accuse it of “failing to speak out.” Put another way, people are against the Church “interfering” in what they would much rather have left alone; and in favour of “interfering” in what they believe should be changed. Why and when does the Church speak out on political questions? The answer is rarely and cautiously, and almost always because it is a matter which touches on the Gospel, on core freedoms and rights (such as the right to life, or to religious freedom, or on core principles of Catholic social teaching. In these cases, the Church not only needs to speak out; it has a duty to do so.” Austin Ivereigh How to Defend the Faith Without Raising your Voice

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