Women's Ordination Links

The Women’s Ordination Worldwide, a worldwide movement to promote the ordination of women in the Roman Catholic Church, held a conference at Carleton University in Ottawa, Ontario, Canada on July 22-24th. Participants from 23 countries were present to discuss and plan strategies for the ordination of women. Information on WOW and this conference can be found on

On July 25th R.C. Womenpriests, an international organization carrying out the formation and ordination of women in the Roman Catholic Church, held ordinations for five women deacons and four women priests on a boat on the St. Lawrence River near Gananoque, Ontario, Canada. This event was covered by NPR, CNN, AP, CBC and numerous other media. Approximately 250 people were in attendance. Information on this organization and this event can be found on Photos of the event can be seen on

Will Benedict XVI be a 'converted pope'?

The following is an excerpt from an excellent commentary by Rose Marie Berger on Sojourner's web site. Read the full commentary here.

I have no doubt that Pope Benedict will uphold the consistent moral stance of Catholic social teaching to the world at large. He will continue to speak clearly about economic justice, a consistent ethic of life, and a strong opposition to war. He stated in his first homily a "determination to continue the commitment to implement the Second Vatican Council" - which will celebrate its 40th anniversary this year - and noted that the teachings are particularly relevant to the "new needs of the Church and the present globalized society."

What the church needs most is a pope who will apply the moral clarity and pastoral mercy of Catholic social teaching to the internal life of the Catholic Church. We do not need a reactionary leader, as Cardinal Ratzinger has proved himself to be, who misidentifies plurality of discourse as heresy, elevates gender apartheid to the level of sanctity, and who views accountability as an attack on authority.

Darfur Genocide Accountability Act

Africa Action has just announced that H.R. 1424 has been introduced. This bill joins the Senate proposal (S. 495). They call for an expansion of the size and strength of the African Union force and the imposition of sanctions on the government of Sudan.
Please visit for further information. You will find the phone number for your representative at another article on our page.


Four years ago a few LaRoche College Pacem in Terris students began a program for street kids in their home country, Rwanda. Umuryango now has 2 residential facilities for over 45 children, one in Gitarama and one in Butare. They also have a Cow Project providing fresh, whole milk for the youngsters each day.

These creative alums have arranged with the Rwandan embassy that any visiting Rwandan dignitary or guest will return home with at least one of the suit-Kases-4-Kids filled with clothing for Umuryango. They have clothes; they need cases.

Who wrote (or said) this? #2

Occasionally we will print a quote here and invite you to guess who is the author. Keep your own score and your response. Visit us again and find the answer.

Our first quote was by Bono, of the band U2.

Our next quote:

"God's purpose, he believes, is not to ease our pain or to answer our prayers but to strip us of all expectation --- to reveal the hollowness of our existence so that we might sacrifice our lives for others, as Christ did. True faith ... takes us as low as we can go. ... conflict and sorrow were God's conduits to the real and the Gospels were just commentary.... You can burn this book, because these are just words about the Word. ...The true Word is in your heart. ... You know what a cult is? ... It's a place where someone tells you what to do in the name of God. If I ever tell anyone what to do around here, they should shoot me. … I couldn't be a believer outside this community. I know my own greed and my need to be right ... I own nothing, I have nothing and I make fifty-five dollars a week ... I'm sixty-six years old and I have no privacy and no retirement plan. I am a blithering idiot by my own definition ... The mystery is, this place satisfies every desire of my heart."

Stop Federal Budget Cuts, call your Senators and Representative

President Bush has submitted the federal budget. The Association of Pittsburgh Priests joined other concerned citizens (Pittsburgh Coalition for Human Needs) to express our support for federal and state funding for housing, hunger and other human needs.

Please call your senators and represenative to oppose the proposed budget and support funding for human needs.

The American Friends Service Committee provides a web page with simple instructions on how to call your Senator and a simple script you can use or adapt to ask them to protect children, older people and families by opposing cuts in nutrition, health care, education and other vital services (e.g. "My name is _?_ and I live at _?_ and I would like Senator _?_ to know that I oppose federal budget cuts to vital public services. A more fair way to cut the deficit is to repeal the 2001 and 2003 tax cuts. Thank-you and Goodbye.")

Senator Arlen Specter: 412-644-3400

Senator Rick Santorum: 412-562-0533

Rep. Mike Doyle: 412-261-5091

Rep. Tim Murphy: 412-344-5583

Rep. Melissa Hart: 412-492-0161

Rep. John Murtha: 814-535-2642

Who wrote (or said) this?

Occasionally we will print a quote here and invite you to guess who is the author. Keep your own score and your response. Visit us again and find the answer. We hope that you are curious.

Our first quote:

"I don't talk about my faith very much because the people you might want to talk with, you don't want to hang out with.
To have faith in a time of religious fervor is a worry. And you know, I do have faith and I'm worried about even the subject because of the sort of fanaticism that is the next door neighbor of faith. The trick in the next few years will be not to decry the religious instinct but to accept that this is a hugely important part of people's lives. And at the same time to be very wary of people who believe that theirs is the only way. Unilateralism before God is dangerous."

People of Faith in 109th Congress

On most Saturday mornings WQED broadcasts Religion and Ethics NewsWeekly at 9:30AM. During a recent program they presented the following information about the upcoming Congress:
Roman Catholics continue to have the highest number: 153 and if I heard the reporter correctly, for the first time, there are more Republicans than Democrats in this group. There are 72 Baptists, 61 Methodists, 50 Presbyterians, 41 Episcopalians, 37 Jews, 20 Lutherans, and 6 who have no affiliation.

Since the overwhelming majority call themselves Christians, is it appropriate to ask how well their votes reflect gospel values? However, our government was established on the separation of church and state. How do their votes reflect genuine humane values? Is there integrity, honesty, and humility to be found among our leaders? Do we care about the poor and powerless? We know where Jesus placed them. They were the focus of his ministry; his healing returned the nobodies to the community where they could live with respect and dignity. What priorities do lawmakers have? Do they respond to the rich and powerful so all remain in power while the poor, like Lazurus, languish not too far from the halls of Congress in Washington?

Do the Christians among them live with any fear or trepidation about the last judgement when the sheep and goats are separated by how we cared for the least among us?

Questions like these keep our minds alert and awake. Isn't that one of the many Advent invitations: Stay alert...never allow yourself to become so certain that you need not learn anymore. As Madeleine L'Engle said at Pitt Theological: "Every good answer leads to another question."