Holy Week with Dante

I have been wanting to read Dante Alighieri’s Divine Comedy for some time, but have always been too busy to begin. However, after learning of Pope Francis’ high valuation of the poem, I knew that I could no longer delay.



Through his writings, Dante, is a man who invites us to regain the path of our human journey and the hope to once again see the bright horizon where shines the full dignity of the human person.



Happily, I have found the poem to be much more understandable and enlightening than I had envisioned. Despite its Medieval nature, the poem ignites the deadened imagination and reminds the reader of the undeniable human desire for God.


Dante’s Divine Comedy begins with Inferno, which describes the principle character’s journey through hell. I began Inferno near the beginning of Lent and have found it to be an excellent aide to Lenten preparations for confession. Journeying through the various rings of hell, and the corresponding human sins, invites the reader to make an interior journey into the depth of one’s own soul.


Dante’s punishments are carefully crafted to reflect the underlying nature of unholy human behaviors. The vivid images compel the reader to determine if one’s current state of being corresponds to the state of the punished sinners.


For example, Dante’s pilgrim encounters a group of souls who lived their life with no real purpose. They were too cowardly, or too lazy, to devote themselves completely to God or even to adamantly resist Him. As the pilgrim watches, he sees a blank banner go by:

Fully Alive: Summer 2016

Theology of the Body Series

Discover the meaning of life & the purpose of love


Wednesday Evenings
June 1, June 8, June 15, June 29, July 6 & July 13
6:30 - 8:30PM


Location:
St. Raphael the Archangel Parish
830 S. Westhaven Dr
Oshkosh, WI 
[view map]


Cost:
There is no charge to attend the series.*




Presented by Burning Hearts Disicples in collaboration with the Diocese of Green Bay Department of Education.
A Diocese of Green Bay Ongoing Catechetical Formation Course.


In this 6-part series, learn more about the legacy left behind by St. John Paul II. This introduction to his Theology of the Body will explore these questions (and more):



  • What does Scripture reveal to us about who God is? About who we are?

  • Why do I have to go to Church? Why can’t I just pray by myself?

  • How is God’s Divine Design revealed in sacred art and architecture?

  • What exactly is God’s Plan for sexuality? What does the Church really teach about sex?


*Materials Needed: 


Participants will be encouraged to read selections from Man and Woman He Created Them: A Theology of the Body by St. John Paul II which is available for free online.  Copies of the text (as well as other resources) will be available for sale during the course.


A free-will offering will be accepted to help defray material, hospitality and presenter costs.


 


New Media

Keywords:  church social media, church marketing, church social media strategy, church facebook page, social media for churches


 


Pros


 


Cons


 


Balance


 


Where it's Being Done Well

we can’t realistically keep up with everything. I can’t be on ALL social media. And I can’t fill up all spare moments with social media. This would actually be harmful to my prayer life and my other duties.


But I can be intentional about bringing gentle messages of faith to the online world.


Depends upon how the new media is used. Direct personal relationship is the keystone (so studies find) for conversion and media influence is remarkably small there. On the other hand, the Forum is an attempt to use social media to duplicate the dynamic of the generation of saints who sparked the great Catholic renewal in 17th century France - and that has been (in my opinion anyway) very fruitful. Largely because we are using a form of social media that is already used by the majority but simultaneously gives us the power to protect the conversation from those who have other agendas. There are certain things that can be done exceptionally well online and somethings that can't. Judging which is which is critical to impact.

Studies of widely used and effective evangelization tools like the Alpha course as used in many Anglican parishes in England found that if there was no larger overall vision and effort in place, the great tools made little or no long term difference in parish life. It was inserting a foreign body and the parish immune system recognized it as such and sealed it off or repelled it. Without leaders with evangelical vision who know they need to use many different tools at different points to foster discipleship, even the best tools fail to bear the fruit they were created to bear.

Evangelization online must compliment and work in conjunction with real relationships. We must however find creative and effective ways to inculturate the gospel to an online world desperate to hear the good news of Jesus.


https://canadiancatholic.net/why-you-should-be-new-media-missionary

Ordinary Time for Ordinary Lives

Green is the color of most of our Church year.  Green vestments on the priest and deacon, green banners hanging behind the altar, green plants adorning the sanctuary.  After the glitz and glamor of the Christmas and Easter seasons, this season in our Church year can seem, well, ordinary.


Ordinary Time


The period in our Church year that follows the Christmas season, and then again follows the Easter season, has an unfortunate name—Ordinary Time.  The name comes from the fact that while we are outside of special seasons, the Church simply counts the time as it passes (3rd Sunday in Ordinary Time, 4th Sunday in Ordinary Time, etc).  It's counted time using the ordinal numbers (1st, 2nd, 3rd...) which is how it got it's name.  Of course, being that it's also outside of the special seasons, it often feels mundane, routine, ordinary as well. 


lit cal


Rev. Larry Rice, CSP explains Ordinary Time this way...

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