Last-minute Lenten reflections

If you’re looking for some quick ways to reflect on the meaning of Lent as you finish up Holy Week, here something you may want to check out. Salt + Light TV in Toronto had Archbishop Terrence Prendergast of Ottawa do a series of quick Lenten reflections. They’re all two minutes or less in length, so they’re easy to digest. This one, for instance, is on how the prophets call us to reconciliation and repentance.

Others that you can sample are on the meaning of Jesus’ sacrifice for us, why we focus on baptism during Lent, and how the life of King David reflects humanity’s need for redemption.

U.S. bishop featured by Canadian Catholic TV network

Our friends at Salt + Light TV in Toronto recently spoke with Bishop John C. Wester of Salt Lake City for its series of one-on-one interviews called “Witness.”  Bishop Wester is the new chairman of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops’ Committee on Communications and a former chairman of the bishops’ Committee on Migration.

As the only Catholic bishop in Utah, he also is at the forefront of Catholicism’s relationship with the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. So topics he discusses here include the differences between his native San Francisco and his current home city and how the Catholic Church and the Mormon community both emphasize family values and care for the poor. He also speaks eloquently on immigration reform and on contemporary challenges for the church in modern communications.

New video highlights work of priests, in their own words

Our friends at Salt + Light Television, Canada’s premier Catholic media ministry, sent along this video they produced for Toronto’s annual “Ordinandi Dinner” for seminarians who will be ordained this year. (Here’s a story posted today by another longtime CNS friend, The Catholic Register in Toronto, on this week’s dinner.)

In the fast-paced video, about a dozen priests (they’ll come at you so quickly you’ll lose count) give their testimonies to what their priesthood means to them. It’s a celebration of ordained life. Take a look:

Canada welcomes new cardinal home with joyous celebration

Canada welcomed home its newest cardinal yesterday with a Mass at St. Michael’s Cathedral in Toronto. The celebration for Cardinal Thomas C. Collins, the 16th Canadian to be elevated to the College of Cardinals, was covered live by our colleagues at Salt + Light Television, Canada’s premier Catholic media ministry. Cardinal Collins was among the 22 prelates elevated to cardinal Feb. 18 by Pope Benedict XVI. You can watch Canada’s joyous celebration here:

You also can see a special report by Salt + Light on the making of a cardinal that focuses on Cardinal Collins. Our Rome bureau also had the pleasure of interviewing the new cardinal last month in Rome about the significance of the red that a cardinal wears.

A big day for lovers of Latin

Few know that today is the 50th anniversary of the promulgation of Pope John XXIII’s apostolic constitution “Veterum Sapientia” on the promotion of the study of Latin. Watch the video below posted today by our Rome bureau on how one group of American students there is trying to keep the language alive.

When we asked this morning on Twitter if anyone knew of today’s anniversary, The Criterion, archdiocesan newspaper of Indianapolis, promptly tweeted back that they were aware of it because it was on their front page 50 years ago. Scroll down and take a look at a portion of Page 1 of their March 2, 1962, edition (.pdf) that trumpeted the story.

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Screenshot of the lead story on The Criterion's front page 50 years ago.

New cardinals not all from U.S. (thank God!)

Confession time: We Americans often are accused — and rightly so — of looking primarily at the U.S. angle to a worldwide story and forgetting to see the broader picture. And so it is with this weekend’s creation of 22 new cardinals for the worldwide church. We’re all focused here on the two Americans — Cardinals-designate Timothy M. Dolan and Edwin F. O’Brien — getting red hats from Pope Benedict XVI this Saturday. How many of us can name one of the remaining 20?

Cardinal-designate Collins (CNS/Paul Haring)

Canada, though, is certainly proud of its new entry into the College of Cardinals, Cardinal-designate Thomas C. Collins of Toronto, who will become the 16th Canadian to wear red.

Our colleagues in the Canadian Catholic press are celebrating his elevation with special sections and interviews. Here, for instance, is the launchpad for coverage of the cardinal-designate by The Catholic Register in Toronto. Included is the ability to browse the paper’s 44-page special section on the cardinal.

Our friends at Salt + Light, Canada’s premier Catholic media ministry,  also are celebrating the event with a special series of telecasts from Rome called “The Making of a Cardinal.” The first and second parts are embedded below,  and you can go to Salt + Light’s YouTube channel for the rest as they’re produced.

(Our Rome bureau also interviewed Cardinal-designate Collins on the significance of the red that a cardinal wears; you can watch that here.)

Valentine’s Day in China

Happy Valentine’s Day! Many Chinese are adopting Western  cultural practices, and that includes Valentine’s Day. On the blog at UCA News, an Asian church news agency, writer Teresa Wang looks at how young people especially are celebrating Valentine’s Day, and she offers to alternative dates to celebrate love.

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