Christianity – Parish Church http://parishchurch.org.uk/ Fri, 31 Dec 2021 23:51:36 +0000 en-US hourly 1 https://wordpress.org/?v=5.8 https://parishchurch.org.uk/wp-content/uploads/2021/10/icon-37-120x120.png Christianity – Parish Church http://parishchurch.org.uk/ 32 32 Humanity A common aspect between Islam and Christianity: bishop https://parishchurch.org.uk/humanity-a-common-aspect-between-islam-and-christianity-bishop/ Fri, 31 Dec 2021 10:41:08 +0000 https://parishchurch.org.uk/humanity-a-common-aspect-between-islam-and-christianity-bishop/ TEHRAN (IQNA) – A Lebanese bishop points out the similarities between Islam and Christianity, citing humanity as one of them. Bishop Matthias Charles Georges Mrad made the remarks in an exclusive interview with the International Koran Press Agency (IQNA) on the occasion of the birthday of Jesus Christ (AS). Establishing a dialogue between Christians and […]]]>

TEHRAN (IQNA) – A Lebanese bishop points out the similarities between Islam and Christianity, citing humanity as one of them.

Bishop Matthias Charles Georges Mrad made the remarks in an exclusive interview with the International Koran Press Agency (IQNA) on the occasion of the birthday of Jesus Christ (AS).

Establishing a dialogue between Christians and Muslims should be based on mutual acceptance and on researching issues that make us more united and avoid problems of division, said the chairman of the Episcopal Committee for Islamic Dialogue. Christian in Lebanon.

Although Christians and Muslims have different beliefs and views, they are similar when it comes to humanity and mercy, he pointed out.

Christians are aware of Muslims’ respect for Jesus Christ (AS) and see him as a major figure, however, there are differences between the status of Jesus in Christianity and in Islam, he added.

Muslims’ appreciation for Jesus causes Christians to have a positive view of Muslims and see them as brothers and not enemies, the bishop said.

Asked about the commonalities between the two denominations, the bishop noted that humanity is the most important common aspect and if we lose it, religion and ethics will also be lost.

Humanity A common aspect between Islam and Christianity: bishop

Love is divine counsel for all religions, he said, noting that meeting a family member and helping the poor are among other commonalities between the two religions.

Designating the committee he heads, the bishop said the committee is made up of Catholic bishops from Lebanon and aims to establish a dialogue with Islam. It builds bridges by discussing issues that can lead to increased unity, he said.

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Evangelicals, a rising force in Argentine prisons …… | News and reports https://parishchurch.org.uk/evangelicals-a-rising-force-in-argentine-prisons-news-and-reports/ Tue, 28 Dec 2021 18:43:24 +0000 https://parishchurch.org.uk/evangelicals-a-rising-force-in-argentine-prisons-news-and-reports/ Prisoners pray inside an evangelical cell block at the penal unit in Pinero, Santa Fe province, Argentina on Thursday, November 4, 2021. Access to evangelical cell blocks is controlled by both prison authorities and cell block leaders who function a bit like pastors.Correctional Institute model UI Dr. Cesar R Tabares, known as Penal Unit 1, […]]]>


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Islam, Christianity in essence: the Iranian president – society / culture news https://parishchurch.org.uk/islam-christianity-in-essence-the-iranian-president-society-culture-news/ Sat, 25 Dec 2021 07:26:00 +0000 https://parishchurch.org.uk/islam-christianity-in-essence-the-iranian-president-society-culture-news/ “The truth of the religion of Jesus Christ is no different from the truth of the religion of Islam, and the Quran mentions excellent attributes for Saint Mary and Jesus Christ,” the Iranian president said at the meeting. ‘a meeting with the Iranian family. Christian martyr, Vartan Aqakhanian, detained in Tehran on Friday. Congratulating the […]]]>

“The truth of the religion of Jesus Christ is no different from the truth of the religion of Islam, and the Quran mentions excellent attributes for Saint Mary and Jesus Christ,” the Iranian president said at the meeting. ‘a meeting with the Iranian family. Christian martyr, Vartan Aqakhanian, detained in Tehran on Friday.

Congratulating the family of the martyr and all followers of Jesus Christ on the New Year, President Raisi said: “Anyone who is willing to sacrifice their life for the homeland, the people and the security of society is dear and respected for the Iranian nation. , that is why the martyrs are a source of pride for Iran and the Iranians.

“The message of the martyrs to the wicked of this country is that the Iranian people are always ready to defend their homeland with self-sacrifice,” he added, according to the president’s official website.

“We owe a lot to the martyrs and we should not hesitate for a moment to defend and protect the achievements of the martyrs,” said Raisi.

In a message earlier Friday, Raisi expressed his “cordial congratulations” to the head of the Roman Catholic Church and to all Christians around the world on the jubilant anniversary of the birth of Jesus Christ, the Prophet. of peace and kindness and the start of the new year.

He declared that the birth of Jesus Christ is the “manifestation of the will and power of God” and added that the spiritual status of Saint Mary, the mother of the Prophet, shows the high position of women in divine religions. .

Raeisi added that the birth of the Prophet is an occasion to pay homage to Saint Mary (pbuh) and a reminder of the moral characteristics of Jesus Christ, who is a model of altruism and the herald of salvation for the oppressed, standing up against the arrogant the oppression of the powers and signaling a bright future for humanity.

The Iranian president also thanked Pope Francis for his efforts to bring the hearts and opinions of followers of the Abrahamic religions closer together.

He also prayed that God would grant “health and success” to Pope Francis and “happiness and blessing” to all human beings, Press TV reported.


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Interpreting Food According to Your Faith: Holiday Culinary Traditions of Christianity, Islam, and Judaism in Palestine https://parishchurch.org.uk/interpreting-food-according-to-your-faith-holiday-culinary-traditions-of-christianity-islam-and-judaism-in-palestine/ Wed, 22 Dec 2021 15:13:01 +0000 https://parishchurch.org.uk/interpreting-food-according-to-your-faith-holiday-culinary-traditions-of-christianity-islam-and-judaism-in-palestine/ For Bethlehem chef Fadi Kattan, the Christmas holiday season is marked by two culinary traditions: the first burbara dish, a wheat sausage commemorating the flight of the 3rd century martyr Saint Barbara, and the second a fruit cake, a A culinary ode to his paternal grandmother, Julia Dabdoub Kattan. It is the richness and faith […]]]>

For Bethlehem chef Fadi Kattan, the Christmas holiday season is marked by two culinary traditions: the first burbara dish, a wheat sausage commemorating the flight of the 3rd century martyr Saint Barbara, and the second a fruit cake, a A culinary ode to his paternal grandmother, Julia Dabdoub Kattan.

It is the richness and faith behind these traditions that engages him, he said.

The local tradition of Saint Barbara, “Burbara” in Arabic, recalls that she escaped from her disapproving father, a Roman general, after converting to Christianity and seeking refuge in the wheat fields of what is. today the Palestinian village of Aboud. The wheat miraculously grew back around her to hide her trail and protect her from pursuing soldiers, but in the end she was captured and beheaded by her own father.

Other local traditions say that Saint Barbara fled to Egypt or Italy. However, her story is remembered, according to Mr. Kattan, the wheat dish to commemorate her on her feast day has its origins in pre-Christian fertility rituals celebrating the winter solstice.

Catholic communities in the region mark Eid el-Burbara December 4, while the Greek Orthodox celebrate it two weeks later.

The wheat dish to commemorate Saint Barbara on her feast day has its origins in pre-Christian fertility rituals celebrating the winter solstice.

“What fascinates me is the way Mother Earth protected her people. For someone who is a chef, that’s pretty important, ”said Mr. Kattan, 43. It is one of the oldest Catholic families in Bethlehem, with a presence dating back to at least the mid-1700s.

Muslim tradition offers a similar wheat dish known as to assure, commemorating the wheat that Noah baked right after the Flood, while Jews and Christians in Lebanon celebrate a birth or the first tooth of a baby with another pudding dish called meghli. While each is somewhat different, all three dishes are flavored with anise and fennel and adorned with sweet candy – in the burbara pudding, this includes sweet chickpeas and little fennel and anise seed candies. – and nuts.

“It’s a fantastic thing that you can see through the traditions,” Mr. Kattan said. “These are the three monotheistic religions which interpret it according to their own faith. It is something to see the food used to celebrate different events, sharing the heritage of the Old Testament.

What these culinary celebrations have in common, he said, “is truly sacred to me because it also reminds us that we are part of the reality of this land. These are millennial traditions readapted to coincide with religious holidays, where you take something very raw and very primitive and turn it into a [not-so-] sweet pudding, preserving that deep earthy taste.

What these culinary celebrations have in common, said Fadi Kattan, “is truly sacred to me because it also reminds us that we are part of the reality of this land.

It is this diversity of local Palestinian cuisine and tradition that he aimed to highlight as the host of an online cooking series, “Teta’s Kitchen,” produced by the Palestine Institute for Public Diplomacy, and his own monthly YouTube show, “Fadi Cooks”.

“Teta” means Grandmother in Arabic. Both series are presented primarily in English or with English subtitles.

“Grandmothers are magical,” Kattan said, as he sat on the second-story balcony overlooking the enclosed courtyard of his house. It was built by his great-grandfather in 1738. “They have the advantage of being able to only be kind and caring, even if you are a rotten child like I was. Grandmothers are still there in this space where you are still very close to your mother but in a different relationship.

The “Fadi Cooks” series is an offshoot of a podcast he started at the start of the pandemic, cooking up traditional Palestinian comfort food.

“Palestinian comfort food is all you can do during a lockdown: stuffed zucchini, hummus – I never thought I’d write a hummus recipe until the lockdown,” he said.

In “Têta’s kitchenMr. Kattan seeks this magic in local dishes, prepared by grandmothers considered to be the best cooks in their community. The first 10 episodes are already available on YouTube, and each one highlights a different regional culinary tradition as well as favorite Palestinian street food.

In “Teta’s Kitchen”, Mr. Kattan seeks out the magic of local dishes, prepared by grandmothers considered to be the best cooks in their community.

The eleventh and final episode, which will be released in time for Christmas this year, is a tribute to her own grandmother, who passed away 12 years ago, and the influence she had on her cooking. He visits her, only for the second time since her death, and spends time with the Union of Arab Women she helped found, as they prepare quince jam, sambousek (pockets of dough stuffed savory) and sabaneh spinach pies.

“The food always tasted like my grandmother’s recipes and it was very special,” he said.

While designed primarily as a positive show, the series also tackles Palestinian political reality, noting West Bank travel restrictions and encroachment on Israeli settlements and their impact on food.

In both cooking series, Mr. Kattan hoped to convey a sense of the deeply rooted local Palestinian cuisine, but he also traces its connection to other cuisines, especially Turkish Ottoman cuisine, which during the 600 years of Ottoman rule in the region meant a great exchange of influences with what is today called the cuisine of the “Levant”.

“’Teta’s Kitchen’ is… really about how food lives differently,” he said.

He explored the cuisine of northern Palestine, including the famous knafeh of the city of Nablus, a sweet cheese and semolina dough, and arayes, pitas stuffed with minced meat then roasted in the oven and finally rubbed with lamb fat. He traveled to Sebastia during the olive harvest season to follow the olive oil production process and with a local m’sakhan “teta” prepared, a dish of chicken and onions prepared on a thick pita soaked in olive oil and sumac.

“All food is based on the reality of the Palestinian territory. It’s such a small country and it’s fantastic that we have such a variety… so close to each other. ”

In Taybeh, the last all-Christian village in the West Bank, and near Bir Zeit, Mr. Kattan visited Taybeh Brewery and Winery and Shepherd’s Brewery. In Bethlehem, he presented stuffed grape leaves, a dish that Christian families prepare on Saturdays for Sunday lunch after mass, setting the pot on low in the morning before going to church so that she be ready when they return.

“All food is based on the reality of the territory. It’s such a small country and it’s fantastic that we have such a variety… so close to each other, ”he said, noting that in the north fresh goat yogurt is used instead. ghee (clarified butter), while in the south, ghee figures prominently in local cuisine. Hebron’s cuisine favors large amounts of ghee and laban jameed, dried yogurts rehydrated with water.

Although the burbara pudding did not appear in any of the recorded episodes, in the first broadcast of “Fadi cooksMr. Kattan baked his grandmother’s Christmas fruit cake. While the recipe likely has its origins in a British fruit cake recipe acquired during the British Mandate, it is deeply rooted in local produce with generous servings of dried fruits including figs, dates and apricots, as well. than grape molasses and cardamom.

Ever since he was a child and stepped underfoot in his grandmother’s kitchen, the joint preparation and consumption of burbara pudding has been a pre-Christmas symbol of the arrival of the holidays, said Mr. Kattan.

“When my local spice vendor releases a shelf for wheat candy, it marks the start of the Christmas season more than those bad imported Christmas chocolates,” he said. “It’s that first taste that heralds the start of Christmas,” evoking memories of a cozy old living room in Bethlehem, “with three or four generations coming together and a lot of chatter. There was always a [unofficial] burbara competition, and every household thought their burbara was the best.

Reflecting the local cuisine, his grandmother’s cuisine was one of generosity and sharing, Mr. Kattan said. Her grandmother made “mounds and mounds” of her fruit cake to distribute to family and friends.

Many loaves of bread, in true acts of charity, were sent to people they did not even know, he recalled. After his grandmother’s death, Mr. Kattan stepped in to carry his culinary traditions into the family and adapted many of them to contemporary Palestinian dishes at his restaurant.

Although his guesthouse and restaurant remain closed in Bethlehem due to Covid-19 travel restrictions and lack of tourists, Mr Kattan has been able to make it to London as those restrictions have eased and is considering open a restaurant there with its point of view Palestinian Food in Spring.

“I learned to cook in my grandmother’s kitchen… and also what the real meaning of community is,” he said. “She cooked Palestinian, French, Iranian… quite a feast of kitchens. This is his heritage to me.


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Review: The Vanishing is a revealing introduction to Christianity in the Middle East | Canberra weather https://parishchurch.org.uk/review-the-vanishing-is-a-revealing-introduction-to-christianity-in-the-middle-east-canberra-weather/ Fri, 17 Dec 2021 21:30:00 +0000 https://parishchurch.org.uk/review-the-vanishing-is-a-revealing-introduction-to-christianity-in-the-middle-east-canberra-weather/ lifestyle, the disappearance, janine di giovanni, bloomsbury The secondary title of this book is “The Twilight of Christianity in the Middle East”. It consists of a series of essays on Christian communities in Iraq, Gaza, Egypt and Syria. The author is Catholic, but deals with all versions of Christianity, especially the different varieties of Eastern […]]]>

lifestyle, the disappearance, janine di giovanni, bloomsbury

The secondary title of this book is “The Twilight of Christianity in the Middle East”. It consists of a series of essays on Christian communities in Iraq, Gaza, Egypt and Syria. The author is Catholic, but deals with all versions of Christianity, especially the different varieties of Eastern practice. She spoke to residents of every country, almost all of whom demanded that their names not be published, including those who now live abroad. She writes about her visit to Iraq while Saddam and his Mukhabarat secret police terrorized the country. Then came the invasion from the west and the death of Saddam, but then it got even worse. “I was not a Saddam fan, but felt that a gigantic scab had been plucked away, leaving a raw, bloody wound without the ability to heal,” she writes. When the Americans left, they were replaced by ISIS, “without allaying the pain that haunted the Iraqi people since the invasion.” Even though Iraq is home to some of the oldest Christian communities in the world, they seem to have an uncertain, sometimes precarious, existence. Before ISIS, they were able to convince the various political leadership groups that they were beneficial for the prosperity of the country. With Daesh, churches were set on fire, statues shattered, icons destroyed, churches used for target shooting or for storing chemicals. When the author returned there in 2019, a resident told her that although ISIS is gone, “the feeling is not.” In Gaza, the author is aware of being where Jesus lived and worked. The Christian population – Catholic, Orthodox, Evangelical – is increasingly shrinking and must manage relations with secular Fatah, militant Hamas and aggressive Israel. A UN representative in Gaza stressed that “the level of education is extremely high, as are the language skills.” Literary levels are over 96 percent, well above the region’s average, yet young people, Muslims and Christians alike, are caught between the political and military postures of their elders. The chapter on Gaza is distressing reading. Syria is confusing, even for those trying to keep up with the war there. There are nearly a dozen versions of Christianity in the country, with a “long, winding, and often bloody” history. Christians in Egypt fare a little better, suffering from discrimination rather than persecution. As with Assad in Syria and Saddam in Iraq, Egyptian Christians tend to support strong leaders like Mubarak in his day and now Sisi. It is likely that any of the chapters here could be developed into a full-fledged book. As it stands, the reader is left with small but memorable snippets like the fact that more than two-thirds of Gaza’s population are under the age of 24, or shocking elements like the fact that ISIS has made huge profits from the sale of girls and young women they captured in their rampages.

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Research: Religious Americans less likely to divorce https://parishchurch.org.uk/research-religious-americans-less-likely-to-divorce/ Tue, 14 Dec 2021 19:46:57 +0000 https://parishchurch.org.uk/research-religious-americans-less-likely-to-divorce/ The average American couple marries, according to the U.S. census around the age of 30. Many young adults believe that forming unions closer to this age reduces their risk of divorce and, indeed, there is to research consistent with this belief. But we also have evidence to suggest that religious Americans are less likely divorce, […]]]>

The average American couple marries, according to the U.S. census around the age of 30. Many young adults believe that forming unions closer to this age reduces their risk of divorce and, indeed, there is to research consistent with this belief. But we also have evidence to suggest that religious Americans are less likely divorce, even though they are more likely to marry younger than 30.

This paradoxical pattern raises two questions worth exploring: Is the way religious Americans shape their marriage different from that of their more secular peers? And do religious unions formed by people 20 years of age and over face different odds of divorce than those formed by lay Americans of the same age group?

The answer to this last question is complicated by the role of cohabitation in contemporary family formation. Today, more than 70 percent of marriages are preceded by cohabitation, as shown in Figure 1. The increase in cohabitation is both a cause and a consequence of the increase in the average age. at the first marriage. But what most young adults don’t know is that living together before marriage, especially with someone other than your future spouse, is also associated with increases risk of divorce, like a recent Stanford to study reports.

One of the reasons that religious marriages in America may be more stable is that they reduce the chances of young adults cohabiting before marriage, even though they increase their likelihood of marrying at a relatively young age. With this in mind, we have explored relationships between religion, cohabitation, age at marriage and divorce by examining data from the National Family Growth Survey (NSFG).

Does religion influence marriage and cohabitation?

To answer this question and others, we have merged The data of the National Family Growth Survey (NSFG) from 1995 to 2019, using responses from more than 53,000 women aged 15 to 49. After controlling for a variety of contextual factors, women who grew up in religion are about 20% less likely to enter into a cohabiting union in any given year than their non-religious peers. By age 35, about 65% of women with a non-religious education had cohabited at least once, compared to less than 50% of women with a religious education.

Not only does religion reduce the chances of young adults living together, it also increases the chances of what we call direct marriages or unions that did not include cohabitation before marriage. The trends illustrated below in Figure 3 are in a similar form for all marriages, but direct marriages are particularly important as they are a closer indicator of the “traditional” relational pathways promoted by many religions.

In other words, religiosity is associated with a significantly higher probability of moving directly from celibacy to marriage without prior cohabitation, and generally at younger ages.

Overall, therefore, religion greatly influences the nature and age of relationship formation.

Does religion influence breakup and divorce?

Early marriage is a known risk factor for divorce. Cohabitation before marriage is too. Since religiosity tends to motivate earlier marriage but less cohabitation, the effects on divorce are not easy to guess. What we really want to know is: do religious people divorce less?

The answer seems to be yes.

Without controls for age at marriage or an indicator of cohabitation before marriage, women with a religious education have slightly lower odds of divorce. As shown in Figure 4 below, the annual divorce rate among married women with a non-religious education is around 5%. For religious women, it’s around 4.5 percent. The effect is clearer for mainline Catholic and Protestant women and less clear for Evangelical Protestant women.

Overall, if we control for a woman’s basic socio-economic background and educational career trajectory, the typical marriage of a woman with a religious upbringing is about 10% less likely to end in divorce in Canada. during the first 15 years of marriage than the typical marriage of a woman. with a non-religious education.

Adding controls for age at marriage yields roughly the same results, suggesting that even though religious people marry younger, their divorce rates are still somewhat lower. But it may just be that religious people cohabit less, resulting in fewer divorces. (For more details on this point, see the complete research file here.)

Figure 5 above answers three specific questions: What is the effect of cohabitation before marriage? What is the effect of age at marriage? And what is the effect of religious education?

Starting with cohabitation before marriage, directly married women tended to have lower divorce rates than women of the same religious affiliation and age at marriage but who married after cohabit. This was especially true for religious women who married before the age of 25.

For women who marry after age 30, the relationship appears to reverse, although estimates are less reliable. Corn particularly for marriages of young people before the age of 20 or in their early twenties, cohabitation before marriage appears to be a major risk factor for divorce.

Age at marriage matters too, but in different ways depending on the group. (Still here, see the research brief for more details.)

What are the takeaways, then?

Among some groups, it is commonly accepted that delaying marriage until your late twenties or early thirties reduces the chances of divorce, as greater maturity results in a more judicious choice of mate. There is some truth to this. However, the life directions associated with a delayed marriage are often also associated with (and even the cause of) greater acceptance of cohabitation before marriage, which is also linked to a higher risk of divorce.

The net result: Lifestyles that motivate early marriage, such as religiosity, do not necessarily create the higher odds of divorce usually associated with early marriage, as they discourage cohabitation.

Yes, the very young marriage has yet risks (in the same way very late marriage), but religious education seems to partially offset these risks, especially among women who marry in their twenties.

Our results also suggest that religion promotes relationship stability by moving young adults away from cohabitation, which is very unstable, and towards marriage, which is much more stable.

Figure 6 provides a simple illustration of the risk of divorce or breakdown by year, by type of union.

The effect of cohabitation on marriage is indeed statistically significant, since cohabitation before marriage increases the odds of divorce by about 15%. But the greatest effect of religion on the stability of the union is not what happens after a woman is married. It’s more about her relationship choices before marriage — the fact that she do get married, rather than starting a series of cohabitation relationships.

What remains unclear is How? ‘Or’ What religion can promote more stable marriages. There are three main possibilities: Religion can make people “make lemons out of lemonade”. It can provide people with institutional or community support. Or it could positively affect the quality of romantic couples.

The first explanation is simple, although pessimistic. The second possibility is that religion actually changes the experience of marriage. Religious communities could provide institutional support for married couples, through mutual aid, community or pastoral interventions, even material or financial support in difficult times.

Finally, religion can change exactly who women marry in important ways.

First, women of faith can access a larger and more marriage-friendly pool of potential spouses in church and related community settings.

Second, religion could change the criteria women have for selecting partners. Knowing that cohabitation is disadvantaged and desiring the companionship of a committed union, religious women might more actively seek “husband material” earlier in life than other women.

Third, religion could change the dynamic between partners in important ways. Faithful women may seek spouses who share values, beliefs or practices important to marital stability. Sharing these values ​​could reduce the potential for conflict on the road.

It is difficult to say exactly which of these factors is at work. But one way or another, our research suggests that waiting to marry until age 30 doesn’t always increase your chances of forging a stable marriage. Especially for religious men and women who avoid cohabitation, our analysis of NSFG material indicates that they can get married in their 20s without increasing their risk of divorce.

The result of all this is that the religious model of marriage and family seems to increase the chances that young adults will be able to marry before the age of 30 without increasing their risk of ending up in divorce court.

Lyman Stone is a researcher at the Institute for Family Studies, chief information officer of the demographic research firm Demographic Intelligence, and an adjunct researcher at the American Enterprise Institute.

W. Bradford Wilcox is Director of the National Marriage Project at the University of Virginia and Principal Investigator at the Institute for Family Studies.

The complete research file is available here.


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Why did Anne Rice leave Christianity? Gothic fiction writer calls his decision “painful” https://parishchurch.org.uk/why-did-anne-rice-leave-christianity-gothic-fiction-writer-calls-his-decision-painful/ Sun, 12 Dec 2021 10:38:00 +0000 https://parishchurch.org.uk/why-did-anne-rice-leave-christianity-gothic-fiction-writer-calls-his-decision-painful/ Gothic fiction author Anne Rice, famous for her novel “Interview with the Vampire”, died of a stroke at the age of 80 on Saturday, December 11. Rice had a complicated, intermittent relationship with Christianity before publicly leaving the religion. for good in 2010. “This is Anne Christopher’s son and it breaks my heart to bring […]]]>

Gothic fiction author Anne Rice, famous for her novel “Interview with the Vampire”, died of a stroke at the age of 80 on Saturday, December 11. Rice had a complicated, intermittent relationship with Christianity before publicly leaving the religion. for good in 2010.

“This is Anne Christopher’s son and it breaks my heart to bring you this sad news. Earlier this evening, Anne passed away from a stroke,” Rice’s son wrote on Facebook and Twitter about her mother’s death. Born in New Orleans, Rice spent much of her youth there before moving to Texas and then to San Francisco. She was the second of four daughters to parents of Irish Catholic descent, Howard O’Brien and Katherine “Kay” Allen O’Brien. But became an agnostic as a young adult. As a young child, Rice studied at St Alphonsus School, a Catholic institution previously attended by her father. Rice was confirmed into the Roman Catholic Church at the age of twelve. Other authors who died this year include Gary Paulsen and Lauren Berlant.

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Anne Rice’s relationship with Christianity

Songwriter Elton John and writer Anne Rice kiss during the encore opening night of “Lestat” at the Palace Theater on April 25, 2006 in New York City. (Photo by Paul Hawthorne / Getty Images)

Since Rice was a strong supporter of gay and lesbian equality, including marriage rights, as well as abortion rights and birth control, and her writings reflected these issues, Rice turned to towards atheism at the age of 18. Catholic Church in 1998 after decades of atheism after she fell into a coma and nearly died, which was later determined to be caused by diabetic ketoacidosis (DKA). However, she continued to advocate for the LGBT community and abortion rights.

In October 2005, while promoting her book “Christ the Lord: Out of Egypt”, she declared that she wanted to use her life and her writings to glorify her belief in God. The author’s note to “Christ the Lord: Out of Egypt” reads: “I had lived an old-fashioned and strict Roman Catholic childhood in the 1940s and 1950s… we attended mass and to daily communion in a huge and beautifully decorated church … Stained glass windows, mass in Latin, detailed answers to complex questions about good and evil, these things were etched in my soul forever … I left this church at 18 … I wanted to know what was going on, why so many seemingly good people did not believe in any organized religion but cared passionately about their behavior and the value of their lives … I broke with the church … I wrote many novels which, without my knowing it, reflected my search for meaning in a world without God. “

Why did Anne Rice leave Christianity?

Rice publicly announced her exit from Christianity on July 28, 2010. On her Facebook page, she wrote: “Today I quit being a Christian … I remain attached to Christ as always, but not to be. “Christian” or to be part of Christianity. It is simply impossible for me to “belong” to this quarrelsome, hostile, disputed and rightly infamous group. For ten years, I tried. I have failed. I am a stranger. My conscience does not allow anything else. . “

Anne Rice signs copies of her new book “Blood Canticle” at Barnes and Noble at Astor Place on October 30, 2003 in New York City. (Photo by Steven Henry / Getty Images)

Soon after, she clarified her statement by saying, “My faith in Christ is central to my life. My conversion from a pessimistic atheist lost in a world I did not understand, to an optimistic believer in a universe created and sustained by a love of God is crucial for me. But following Christ does not mean following his disciples. Christ is infinitely more important than Christianity and always will be, no matter what Christianity is, has been, or might become.

On her decision to give up her religion, she said NPR in August of the same year it was a “painful” decision. Although there was “the final knockout,” it was not a single event that prompted her to reject organized religion. “This is something that has really been going on since I started my conversion in 1998,” she said. “From the start there were signs that the public face of Catholicism and the public face of Christianity were things that I found very, very difficult to come to terms with.”

One of the last drops was when she realized everything the church would do to prevent same-sex marriage. “I didn’t anticipate at first that the American bishops were going to speak out against same-sex marriage,” she said. “That they were actually going to donate money to defeat gay civil rights in secular society… When it hit the headlines, I felt a lot of pressure. And I’m a person who has. grew up with the saying that all of this is necessary for evil to prevail is that good people do nothing, and I believe that statement. “

Rice added that since this decision, she has a “new freedom to confess my fears, my doubts, my pain, my conflicts, my alienation”, and she says she intends to take advantage of this freedom. “You know, I don’t like disappointing all my Catholic friends too much,” she said. “I hate to disappoint all of my Christian friends and contacts. I really don’t like it. It’s painful. But I did what I felt I had to do.”

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Cardinal Burke says first post-COVID Mass | Best Stories https://parishchurch.org.uk/cardinal-burke-says-first-post-covid-mass-best-stories/ Sun, 12 Dec 2021 00:40:00 +0000 https://parishchurch.org.uk/cardinal-burke-says-first-post-covid-mass-best-stories/ Having survived COVID-19, Catholic Cardinal Raymond Burke thanked God and Our Lady of Guadalupe during his first Mass since being hospitalized with the virus earlier this year. LA CROSSE, Wisconsin (WXOW) – Having survived COVID-19, Catholic Cardinal Raymond Burke thanked God and Our Lady of Guadalupe during his first Mass since being hospitalized with the […]]]>

Having survived COVID-19, Catholic Cardinal Raymond Burke thanked God and Our Lady of Guadalupe during his first Mass since being hospitalized with the virus earlier this year.



LA CROSSE, Wisconsin (WXOW) – Having survived COVID-19, Catholic Cardinal Raymond Burke thanked God and Our Lady of Guadalupe during his first Mass since being hospitalized with the virus earlier this year.

Burke, 73, was diagnosed with COVID-19 in August. After treatment at a Wisconsin hospital, including several days on a ventilator, Burke was discharged and spent three months rehabilitating at St. Mary’s Oratory in Wausau.

He celebrated the traditional Latin Mass at the Shrine of Our Lady of Guadalupe in La Crosse.

Giving his homily in English, Burke thanked him for being spared from COVID-19.

“When I regained consciousness after spending nine crucial days on a ventilator,” remembers Burke of the heart of his divine Son, the Most Sacred Heart of Jesus.

He also took the time to thank those who prayed for him and thanked a number of people who helped him through his battle with the deadly virus.

While his condition has improved, Burke is not yet able to resume all of his duties. He vowed to do more to serve God, specifically saying that he would increase his service at the sanctuary.

Burke said he would work on the construction of the retirement home next to the church to “help the pilgrims to the shrine to have the fullest possible encounter with our Lord.”

A native of the La Crosse region, Burke was previously Bishop of the Diocese of La Crosse. He is now Archbishop Emeritus of the Archdiocese of Saint-Louis.


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Does Christianity Have a Future Under Labor? https://parishchurch.org.uk/does-christianity-have-a-future-under-labor/ Wed, 08 Dec 2021 01:29:53 +0000 https://parishchurch.org.uk/does-christianity-have-a-future-under-labor/ Reading time: 3 minutes Keneally said discussions over the religious discrimination bill have played an important role in raising the awareness of the work’s increasingly vigorous to religious communities, of which she is a key envoy. (AAP Image / Dan Himbrechts) Labor is stepping up its attempts to woo Christian votes in the run-up to […]]]>

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Keneally said discussions over the religious discrimination bill have played an important role in raising the awareness of the work’s increasingly vigorous to religious communities, of which she is a key envoy. (AAP Image / Dan Himbrechts)

Labor is stepping up its attempts to woo Christian votes in the run-up to the 2022 federal election, with Senator Kristina Keneally appearing on an online forum to answer the question, “Does Christianity have a future under Labor?”

The question was asked in reference to Labor’s previous defeat in the 2019 federal election and current debates over religious freedom.

Keneally said the party’s post-election review concluded voters formed “the impression that Labor was not as welcoming to believers as our opponents”.

The suppression by Labor of the vote of conscience on the question of same-sex marriage influenced this view of the electorate, which “disappointed” Keneally

“I felt this sent a message that Labor no longer respected the views of people in the community who held a different position in good conscience on this issue,” the senator said.

Keneally sought to portray opposition leader Anthony Albanese as an alternative prime minister who would rule in the tradition of Catholic social education.

She appealed to the broad Catholic concern for social justice and ecology as important political issues in 2022, but did not substantively discuss religious freedom until it was questioned by the organizers.

“[Albanese’s] Mother Marianne imbued her son with three main denominations: the Catholic Church, the South Sydney Rabbitohs and the Australian Labor Party, ”said Keneally.

“Through his education and his Catholic education, he knows the importance of taking care of the poor, of feeding the hungry, of taking care of the sick. To value the human dignity inherent in every person.

“This is now Labor’s vision for the future of our country. Indeed, we could call it a country where we seek to bring good news to the poor and liberate the oppressed. “

Keneally admitted that discussions over the religious discrimination bill have been an important part of the work’s increasingly vigorous outreach to religious communities, of which she is a key envoy.

Yet when asked if Labor would support the bill, she replied ‘we don’t have a final version’.

“We must wait for the conclusion of these two investigations [a Senate Inquiry and the Parliamentary Joint Committee on Human Rights] before we come to a final position.

She said Labor’s principles when making a decision on the bill were influenced by the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights and by the desire to protect existing protections under Australia’s Discrimination Act.

She called for a bipartisan stance on the bill and said the coalition government was trying to turn religious freedom into “political football” ahead of the elections.

“I don’t think it serves the community at large and I certainly don’t think it serves the purposes of good public policy making,” Keneally said.

She supported the right of religious communities to privilege those of their own faith in employment, saying that as a Catholic teacher she has learned that religious communities are “ecosystems” where each person has a role in it. respect for values ​​and standards.

“Anthony Albanese’s mother, Marianne, imbued her son with three major denominations: the Catholic Church, the South Sydney Rabbitohs and the Australian Labor Party”

Keneally is seeking to leave the Senate in the next election and move to the seat of Fowler’s lower house in western Sydney, which encompasses Cabramatta and the surrounding area.

The headquarters has a vibrant Christian population and is among Sydney’s most culturally diverse communities.

Her appearance at the webinar, hosted by Christian lobby group FamilyVoice, gave her the opportunity to speak about her own struggles with the faith, including her doubts during the Royal Commission on Child Abuse.

“I sometimes find it difficult to understand how an institution that is so imperfect and allowed such evil to occur could also be a transmission of the grace and sacraments of God,” Keneally said.

“[But] I’m not sure I could give up being a Catholic any more than I could give up being a woman or being 53. “

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Cultural Christianity and Theological Potemkinism https://parishchurch.org.uk/cultural-christianity-and-theological-potemkinism/ Tue, 07 Dec 2021 02:32:45 +0000 https://parishchurch.org.uk/cultural-christianity-and-theological-potemkinism/ There is a famous philosophical thought experiment, attributed to Robert Nozick, which asks the question of the “experimenting machine”. Imagine being offered the possibility of being permanently placed in a sensory deprivation reservoir, where electrodes, capable of triggering an endless array of thoughts and sensations, will be connected to your brain. Any knowledge of the […]]]>

There is a famous philosophical thought experiment, attributed to Robert Nozick, which asks the question of the “experimenting machine”. Imagine being offered the possibility of being permanently placed in a sensory deprivation reservoir, where electrodes, capable of triggering an endless array of thoughts and sensations, will be connected to your brain. Any knowledge of the procedure will be purged from your memory., which means, for you, there will be no noticeable difference between real and simulated experiences. An endless world of fun and possibilities awaits you.

Would you enter this “machine of experience”? Nozick’s hypothesis forces the question of if the truth itself matters more than the illusion of truth. And moviegoers, of course, will recognize this as the very script dramatized by the villainous Cypher in the 1999s. The matrix.

And it was this thought experiment that kept coming to my mind as I read a series of recent discussions on the relative merits of “cultural Christianity.” By “cultural Christianity” I mean the traps and effects of traditional religiosity, even as mere echoes (within a secularizing culture) of a more vibrant history. In America, think of the motto “In God We Trust” on American coins, or the invocation “God save the United States and this honorable Court” at the start of Supreme Court sessions; many European countries, of course, have more layers given their history of formal religious establishment. These discussions have largely taken the form of stepping back from the misconception that “cultural Christianity” is not at all good. That conventional wisdom, for its part, tends to enhance the marginalization of the faith, or suggest that the decline of Christianity in the public square is a largely unspeakable good since it serves to purify the Church.

The problem with this take – to celebrate, that is to say the decline of “cultural Christianity” – is that it does not tend to reflect a great confidence in Christianity’s claims to the truth about human nature, the transformative effect of faith on individual lives, or the benefits for the “weaker brothers” to inhabit a sympathetic faith rather than a culture hostile to the faith. It is far from clear that a society completely purged of its historic Christian traces will lead to a stronger Church.

In a recent article at The American Conservative, three prominent supporters of “political Catholicism” repel on the position that “Christianity. . . can only be publicly significant when it is sincerely embraced and spontaneously expressed “and instead asserts a set of practices that might” not guarantee the salvation of every soul, but [that lay] down the structures that ma[k]th such a thing easier. Despite declining rates of formal religious participation among European audiences, the authors note that

Even in parts of Western Europe where mass attendance has declined, the annual festivals preserve the worship of local saints and patrons, as the feast of St. Peter in late June is commemorated by the fishing villages that dot the Mediterranean coast. In secular Germany and Austria, Sunday remains a legally prohibited day of rest. Like the quiet country shrines still visited by the faithful, these vestigial practices could once again become functional elements of Christian politics.

From a certain point of view, there are a lot of things that I agree with here. On the political level, I certainly support the deployment of “structural, embodied, material” realities which support the family, protect the dignity of workers, allow time for worship, and so on. And the article makes it clear that, contrary to some of the more vocal claims of their critics, the authors are not interested in a neo-inquisitorial project designed to root out the shadow of heresy in individual souls.

What I’m less sure of, however, is the possibility that “these residual practices may once again be functional elements of Christian politics” – at least in the absence of some sort of social transformation that would completely disrupt our landscape. current epistemic.

The great genius of Christian practice is that its prayers and liturgies teach — in a way that its visible symbols and cultural forms, when stripped of their surrounding context, not necessarily. You learn to appreciate the sense of aesthetics and practices through repetition, submission and repeated exposure, yes, but Also through catechesis and spiritual formation which take the interiority of the individual seriously. And I would argue that the latter is, in modernity, the necessary condition for a real engagement with the former. The educational effect of a practice is correlated with the relative “thickness” of that practice.

An obvious rebuttal to this accusation is that, like so many Protestants, I overintellectualize the issue; good theological understanding matters less than obedience and participation. It may be, but I would say this principle really only holds within an otherwise unified community of practice around the same set of formal commitments. This is because, in a situation (like ours under modernity) where Christian claims to truth are contested, alternative – heterodox – understandings of the meaning of Christian practices are always ready to replace orthodox understandings. It is common today to hear aggressive counter-narratives of Christian history, such as the cross itself represents a morbid fascination with death rather than the beauties of finite life. And we can easily innovate new arguments in the same direction: what if the linked beads of the rosary represented the oppressive hierarchy of the Great Chain of Being, a metaphysics that must be overturned?

In short, the possibility that the forms of “cultural Christianity” may be auxiliaries of the faith only really exists in an environment where the sense of these forms is not constantly contested. But today the outer markers of “cultural Christianity” have been – tragically – made ambiguous. And where the meaning is ambiguous, these markers tend at best to become expressions of simple sentimentality rather than real educational tools. In the British newspaper The temperature, Matthew Parris recently sketched a argument it should haunt all of us who would like to see a revival of Christianity in the public arena.

I do not believe in God. But I love the Church, I pay my subtitles to All Saints in Elton, I sing hymns, and I rejoice in the Old and New Testaments. I say my prayers every night not because someone is listening to me, but because I always have. . . . Let me talk about myself because there are millions like me. This is the Church of England we want to be a part of, if it’s twinned. It is intimately, inseparably associated with bricks, stones and windows, ritual and music, theologically unchallenged, with a certain slight vagueness as to doctrine.[.]”

What is risked by an uncritical assertion of “cultural Christianity” is this kind of theological potemkinism, an approach to culture that emphasizes the outward cues of belief rather than the thought-life of its inhabitants. , to the point where his ideal “Christian society” really becomes an experiential machine version of Christianity. On such a model, these indices are easily appropriate by those who are less interested in theological depth than in the politics of power.

Of course, as Christian tradition has recognized from its earliest days, no temporal power can constrain inner belief, and I certainly don’t mean to imply that anyone should try. Rather, it seems to me that the problem inherent in attempts to consolidate “cultural Christianity” testifies to a greater difficulty in invoking premodern societies as models for the reconstruction of postliberal societies: a harmony of shared cultural beliefs and practices cannot really hold inasmuch as individuals are, to some extent, epistemically isolated from challenges to these beliefs. And here we come to the logic of why the Catholic Church issued a Index Librorum Prohibitum– list of banned books – for so long: information must be controlled in one way or another, so that the meaning of critical Christian cultural forms is not made ambiguous. Under the conditions of radical intellectual pluralism generated by the printing press, the Internet, the modern smartphone, etc., I am not sure that the symbols of “cultural Christianity” can be invigorated as their advocates wish.

For my part, I am drawn to an appreciation of the Christian past of my civilization which is not quite so instrumentalized. Old churches and old invocations are worth preserving because they testify to the glory and beauty of God – and as far as I’m concerned, it is a sufficient end in itself, the one that has nothing to do with that of Parris pro forma ritualism or any attempt to bring the remnants of “cultural Christianity” back to political service.

As far as the salvation of souls is concerned, I think this process will probably have to proceed from the inside out, rather than from the outside in. Perhaps that makes me a Protestant par excellence, but I prefer to think that it makes me an observer of the time.



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