apr 042020
 

I videoen over (fra i går kveld) hilser pave Frans alle mennesker i Italia og i resten av verden. Videoen er tekstet til engelsk, men katolsk.no har også lagt ut videoen med en norsk oversettelse, og den har til overskrift: Vit at paven er nær og ber om at Herren snart skal frelse oss alle fra det onde

Jeg har ofte ikke vært veldig fornøyd med pave Frans (og lengtet tilbake til pave Benedikts tid), men jeg syns han har klart disse siste ukene under denne alvorlige pandemien.

mar 252020
 

I dag leste jeg følgende hos Rorate Cæli:

Suspending public Mass is not new. In 1918, during the Spanish Influenza Epidemic, in the Archdiocese of Philadelphia, public Masses were suspended for a number of weeks in October 1918.

Philadelphia was particularly hard-hit by the Spanish Influenza of 1918. There was a public war-bonds parade at the beginning of October in which 200,000 people attended. Three days later, Spanish Influenza exploded in Philadelphia, and, within two weeks, 4,500 people had died.

Archbishop Dougherty suspended public Masses on March 4th (in accordance with the order of the Board of Health) and called upon the religious sisters to help care for the sick. He also encouraged the use of church facilities for the temporary care of the sick. The churches in the city of Philadelphia were not ordered to be locked and many remained opened for the faithful. Masses and public devotions including confessions were suspended, though. City churches reinstated confessions on Saturday Oct 26th with public Mass starting the following day, but in many rural churches the public celebration of Mass remained suspended until Nov 3rd.

Philadelphia was not the only city to close churches. A 2007 study looked at how 17 cities responded to the September – December 1918 Spanish Influenza Epidemic. The purpose of the study was to determine the effects of social distancing on the spread of the flu. The authors document 13 cities that curtailed church gatherings: Baltimore, Boston, Cincinnati, Cleveland, Indianapolis, Kansas City, Newark, New Orleans, Omaha, Pittsburgh, Seattle, St. Louis, and Washington DC.

During these difficult times in 2020, we should be aware that what we are experiencing is not totally new. As a devout Catholic, suspension of public Mass is a shock, but we should remember that the Church has been here before. Catholics can and should make acts of spiritual communion and pray with due attention. If the churches in your diocese are not locked, make a visit to the Blessed Sacrament and spend some time with Our Lord.

mar 182020
 

Dette fant jeg på lifesitenews.com:

A ‘flash of creativity’ fills an empty parish church during Mass

A small-town Italian priest, saddened at the prospect of celebrating Mass without his parishioners, sent out a call to them asking them to take selfies and send them to him.

“Send me photographs of yourselves, of you and your family, the photo of your face, I need to see faces in front of me when I celebrate Mass next Sunday,” explained Fr. Giuseppe Corbari, according to a WantedinMilan.com report. “I will print the photo you send me and I will stick it with sellotape on the pew: it is a way to make me feel less alone.”

“Obviously I will put the children in the front benches, the altar boys on the altar, and all the adults in the other places,” added Fr. Corbari, who said he was happy to once again have his church full of smiling faces.”

mar 172020
 

I avisa Dagen kunne vi nylig lese:

Pave Frans gikk ut for å be om at koronaviruspandemien må ta slutt, …han … gikk først til basilikaen Santa Maria Maggiore, som han ofte tidligere har besøkt for å be takkebønn når han vender tilbake fra utenlandsreiser.

Deretter gikk turen til Piazza Venezia, hvor han spaserte en kort tur langs handlegaten Via del Corso før han stakk innom ei kirke som de fleste turister går forbi, San Marcello al Corso.

– Med sin bønn har den hellige far påkalt slutten på pandemien som rammer Italia og verden, tryglet om at de mange syke blir helbredet, og også mintes de mange ofrene og bedt om at deres familier og venner finner trøst og støtte, sier Vatikanet i en pressemelding søndag kveld.

I en artikkel som egentlig handlet om noe annet, leste jeg også: “the church of San Marcello al Corso, where a miraculous crucifix is housed. In 1522 it was carried in procession throughout the neighborhoods of the city so that the ‘Great Plague’ might cease in Rome.”

Etter hvert fant jeg også ut mer om dette krusifikset, bl.a. HER:

The church of San Marcello al Corso hosts a wonderful, dark wooden crucifix by the fourteenth century Sienese school. … A miraculous episode dates back to the time of the great plague of 1522. The plague struck Rome so violently as to cause concern that the city remained without inhabitants. Mindful of the miracle of the fire, the friars of the order of the “Servants of Mary” decided to take the crucifix in penitential procession from the church of San Marcello to St. Peter’s Basilica. The authorities, fearing the risk of contagion tried to prevent the religious procession, but the collective despair did not accept the ban and the sculpture of the Savior was carried through the streets of the city and followed by public acclaim. The chronicles of the time say that the procession lasted sixteen days, 4 to 20 August of that year. And that’s because, as they proceeded, the plague receded, so that each district was trying to hold back as long as possible the sacred image. When it returned to San Marcello, the plague had completely ceased and Rome was saved.

Mer informasjon HER (gå ned til “Chapel of the Crucifix”).

mar 152020
 

Rorate Coeli leste jeg i går, 14/3, dette vitnesbyrdet om et italiensk politikers katolske tro:

Yesterday the Mayor of Venice, Luigi Brugnaro, wearing his three-colored sash of office, visited the Basilica of La Madonna della Salute in Venice – and – along with other prayers , invoking the protection of the Blessed Virgin– consecrated Venice and the entire Veneto region to the Immaculate Heart of Mary with this: “we consecrate the city of Venice and our Veneto lands to Your Immaculate Heart.”

feb 282020
 

Det danske Katolsk Orientering skriver i siste nummer om den såkalte «synodale vei» i Den katolske kirke i Tyskland

Der knytter sig mange forventninger til resultatet af den synodale vej, som den tyske bispekonference annoncerede sidste forår og indledte 1. søndag i advent, og som de næste to år skal omhandle emnerne præstecølibatet, Kirkens seksualmoral og magtfordelingen i Kirken samt kvindens rolle i Kirken.
Drøftelserne foregår mellem repræsentanter for landets katolske biskopper og lægorganisationen De tyske katolikkers Centralkomité. Det første af i alt fire møder i den synodale vej, afholdt i Frankfurt am Main 30. januar-1. februar, fik både ros og kritik fra de 230 deltagere …

Københavns biskop deltok på møtet fra Den nordiske bispekonferansen og beskriver det som skjedde på møtet som en “forudsigelig proces“. Slik skriver Katolsk Orientering:

Katolske observatører for otte nabolande samt delegerede fra andre kirkesamfund deltog på mødet i Frankfurt. Fra Danmark deltog biskop Czeslaw Kozon i hans egenskab af formand for Den nordiske Bispekonference, og Leo Roed som næstformand for Pastoralrådet.

Biskop Czeslaw sagde efterfølgende, at han godt kan forstå de tyske biskoppers ønske om at ville gøre noget som opfølgning på overgrebssagerne, men det, ”der bekymrer mig, er dog de store forventninger til mange ting, som ikke har direkte at gøre med disse sager. Den synodale vej handler om meget andet og der er forventning om, at Kirkens holdning ændrer sig på disse områder”.

Selv om der er afsat to år til den synodale vej var det biskop Czeslaws fornemmelse, ”at man med stormskridt forsøger at nærme sig det resultat, man ønsker at få ud af processen, nemlig en stærk opblødning af Kirkens holdning på mange områder”. Czeslaw betegner processen som ”meget forudsigelig” i indhold og emner, som ikke er opstået efter overgrebssager, men har stået på mange tyske katolikkers ønskeseddel i årtier.

”Der blev ofte under drøftelserne refereret til Würzburg synoden, der sluttede i 1975, og som havde mange af disse emner på dagsorden, fx kvinders stilling og cølibatet. På mødet mærkede man den frustration hos nogle, at der er gået 50 år siden synoden, og der er ikke sket noget endnu. Men det er også, fordi det er svært at forestille sig nogle radikale ændringer, eftersom det hele skal ses inden for Den universelle Kirkes kontekst”.

Biskop Czeslaw påpegede, at ”det er vigtigt at huske på, at den synodale vej ikke kan beslutte noget endegyldigt, hvis man når til enighed om emner, som berører noget af dogmatikken eller moralen. Så er det et anliggende for Verdenskirken, dvs. det skal forbi Rom. I første omgang vil det, der viser sig flertal for, være noget man vil anbefale paven at skulle tage stilling til”.

feb 242020
 

Sandro Magister skriver om de to bispesynoden som ble avholdt i Vatikanet høsten 2018 og høsten 2019, bl.a.:

That on the Amazon is the second synod in a row in which Francis has disappointed the expectations of those awaiting the innovations that he himself, the pope, had foretold.

In the 2018 synod on young people, the issue on which the expectations and controversies had focused was homosexuality. The base document of the discussion, in its paragraph 197, explicitly admitted a possible paradigm shift in judging “homosexual couples.”

And instead nothing. When the synod gathered, Francis imposed and obtained silence on the subject. No mention was made of it in the assembly discussions, nor in the final document, much less in the post-synodal pontifical exhortation “Christus vivit.” And so that on young people – emptied of its only spicy ingredient – became the most useless and boring synod in history.

The following year, with the synod on the Amazon and especially with what followed, the disappointment of the innovators was even stronger.

Because this time at the synod the discussion did take place on the most awaited and disputed change, which was the ordination of married men. In the final document the proposal passed with more than two thirds of the votes. And still in early January many were sure that Francis would adopt and authorize it, in the post-synodal exhortation expected at any moment.

But then came, in strenuous defense of the celibate priesthood, the bombshell book by pope emeritus Benedict XVI and Cardinal Robert Sarah, received by the innovators as a disastrous omen.

And in fact shortly afterward the post-synodal exhortation “Querida Amazonia” fell like a sudden chill, with the total silence of Francis on the subject. …

Hvorfor skjedde så dette? Magister forklarer det med utviklingen i Den katolske kirke i Tyskland, som pave Frans ikke liker. Les mer om dette her.

feb 182020
 

Det er fredag etter Sexagesima søndag som skal feires denne fredagen, og der lyder starten av inngangsverset slik:

Exsurge, quare obdormis, Domine? exsurge, et ne repellas in finem. Quare faciem tuam avertis, oblivisceris tribulationem nostram? adhæsit in terra venter noster: exsurge, Domine, adjuva nos, et libera nos. – Reis deg, Herre, hvorfor sover du? Reis deg og støt oss ikke for alltid bort. Hvorfor vender du ditt åsyn bort, glemmer vår nød? Vårt legeme henger ved jorden. Reis deg, Herre, kom oss til hjelp og frels oss.

Dagen kan også kalles såmannssøndagen pga. evangeliet, fra Lukas 8,4-15, som lyder slik (Bibelselskapets oversettelse 2011):

Mye folk strømmet nå til fra byene omkring. Da en stor mengde hadde samlet seg om Jesus, fortalte han en lignelse:

«En såmann gikk ut for å så kornet sitt. Og da han sådde, falt noe ved veien. Det ble tråkket ned, og fuglene under himmelen kom og spiste det opp. Noe falt på steingrunn, og det visnet straks det kom opp, fordi det ikke fikk væte. Noe falt blant tornebusker, og tornebuskene vokste opp sammen med det og kvalte det. Men noe falt i god jord, og det vokste opp og bar frukt, hele hundre ganger det som ble sådd.» Da han hadde sagt dette, ropte han ut: «Den som har ører å høre med, hør!»

Disiplene spurte ham hva denne lignelsen betydde. Han svarte: «Dere er det gitt å kjenne Guds rikes hemmeligheter. Men de andre får det i lignelser, for at de skal se, men ikke se, og høre, men ikke forstå.

Dette er meningen med lignelsen: Såkornet er Guds ord. De ved veien er de som hører det, men så kommer djevelen og tar ordet bort fra hjertet deres, for at de ikke skal tro og bli frelst. De på steingrunn er de som tar imot ordet med glede når de hører det. Men de har ingen rot; de tror bare en tid, og når de blir satt på prøve, faller de fra. Det som falt blant tornebusker, er de som nok hører ordet, men som på veien gjennom livet kveles av bekymringer, rikdom og nytelser så de ikke bærer fullmoden frukt. Men det i den gode jorden, det er de som hører ordet og tar vare på det i et fint og godt hjerte, så de er utholdende og bærer frukt.

Alle bønner og tekster til denne dagen kan leses her: http://tlm.katolsk.no/tekster/sexagesima.htm

feb 032020
 

De siste to ukene av januar leste jeg meg også gjennom bok to av Chris Wickham, nemlig The Inheritance of Rome. Det var svært mye (noen ganger litt for detaljert) og interessant informasjon på de 600 sidene. Amazon skriver om boka:

The world known as the ‘Dark Ages’, often seen as a time of barbarism, was in fact the crucible in which modern Europe would be created.

Chris Wickham’s acclaimed history shows how this period, encompassing peoples such as Goths, Franks, Vandals, Byzantines, Arabs, Anglo-Saxons and Vikings, was central to the development of our history and culture. From the collapse of the Roman Empire to the establishment of new European states, and from Ireland to Constantinople, the Baltic to the Mediterranean, this landmark work makes sense of a time of invasion and turbulence, but also of continuity, creativity and achievement.

feb 012020
 

Dette var et emne jeg visste lite om, jeg hadde hørt navnene til Attila huneren (406-453) og Djengis Khan (1162-1227), men ikke så mye mer. Nå har jeg hørt gjennom over 18 timer med foredrag om disse “Barbarian Empires of the Steppes” (kanskje for mye detaljer en del steder) og lært en hel del. Audible skriver om boka:

The word “barbarian” quickly conjures images of Attila the Hun and Genghis Khan. Yet few people realize these men belong to a succession of nomadic warriors who emerged from the Eurasian steppes to conquer civilizations. It’s a part of ancient and medieval history that’s often overlooked, but for an accurate view of how the world evolved, it’s essential.

Covering some 6,000 miles and 6,000 years, this eye-opening course illuminates how a series of groups – from the Sacae and Sarmatians to the infamous Huns and Mongols – pushed ever westward, coming into contact with the Roman Empire, Han China, and distant cultures from Iraq to India.

Along the way, you’ll learn how these nomads caused a domino effect of displacement and cultural exchange; meet fascinating figures such as Tamerlane, the “Prince of Destruction”; witness struggles to control the legendary Silk Road; trace the spread of Buddhism and Islam, and more.

By looking past the barbarian stereotype, you’ll understand who these people were, the significance of their innovations – which include stirrups, saddles, and gunpowder – and the magnitude of their impact. Of course, these warriors did wage campaigns of terror, and you’ll hear many accounts of violence as well.

Led by an award-winning professor, these 36 lectures provide new insights on how the world was shaped and introduce you to cultures and empires you’ve likely never encountered.

jan 252020
 

Jeg kjøpte denne lydboka for 4-5 år siden, men først nå fikk jeg hørt gjennom den grundig. Den var interessant og tok opp mange flere kulturelle trekk ved vikingene enn jeg hadde regnet med; bl.a. dere bosettninger og innflytelse på Island, Irland, Normandie og Ukraina/Russland. Audible skriver om boka:

As raiders and explorers, the Vikings played a decisive role in the formation of Latin Christendom, and particularly of western Europe.

Now, in a series of 36 vivid lectures by an honored teacher and classical scholar, you have the opportunity to understand this remarkable race as never before, studying the Vikings not only as warriors, but in all of the other roles in which they were equally extraordinary – merchants, artists, kings, raiders, seafarers, shipbuilders, and creators of a remarkable literature of myths and sagas. Professor Harl draws insights from an astonishing array of sources: The Russian Primary Chronicle (a Slavic text from medieval Kiev), 13th-century Icelandic poems and sagas, Byzantine accounts, Arab geographies, annals of Irish monks who faced Viking raids, Roman reports, and scores of other firsthand contemporary documents.

Among the topics you’ll explore are the profound influence of the Norse gods and heroes on Viking culture and the Vikings’ extraordinary accomplishments as explorers and settlers in Iceland, Greenland, and Vinland. And with the help of archaeological findings, you’ll learn to analyze Viking ship burials, rune stones and runic inscriptions, Viking wood carving, jewelry, sculpture, and metalwork. By the end of the series, you’ll have a new understanding of what it meant to be a Viking and a richer appreciation of this remarkable race – a people who truly defined the history of Europe, and whose brave, adventurous, and creative spirit still survives today.

jan 182020
 

Første halvdel av januar leste jeg meg også (i tillegg til flere lydbøker) gjennom Chris Wickhams Medieval Europe. Det var ganske lærerikt og Amazon skriver om boka:

A spirited and thought-provoking history of the vast changes that transformed Europe during the 1,000-year span of the Middle Ages The millennium between the breakup of the western Roman Empire and the Reformation was a long and hugely transformative period-one not easily chronicled within the scope of a few hundred pages. Yet distinguished historian Chris Wickham has taken up the challenge in this landmark book, and he succeeds in producing the most riveting account of medieval Europe in a generation. Tracking the entire sweep of the Middle Ages across Europe, Wickham focuses on important changes century by century, including such pivotal crises and moments as the fall of the western Roman Empire, Charlemagne’s reforms, the feudal revolution, the challenge of heresy, the destruction of the Byzantine Empire, the rebuilding of late medieval states, and the appalling devastation of the Black Death. He provides illuminating vignettes that underscore how shifting social, economic, and political circumstances affected individual lives and international events. Wickham offers both a new conception of Europe’s medieval period and a provocative revision of exactly how and why the Middle Ages matter.

jan 172020
 

Jeg har lest en del om Aleksander den store også tidligere, men denne lydboka ga meg en hel del ekstra informasjon om ham. På Audibles nettsider leser man bl.a. dette om den:

More than two millennia have passed since Alexander the Great built an empire that stretched to every corner of the ancient world, from the backwater kingdom of Macedonia to the Hellenic world, Persia, and ultimately to India – all before his untimely death at age 33. Alexander believed that his empire would stop only when he reached the Pacific Ocean. But stories of both real and legendary events from his life have kept him evergreen in our imaginations with a legacy that has meant something different to every era: In the Middle Ages he became an exemplar of knightly chivalry, he was a star of Renaissance paintings, and by the early 20th century he’d even come to resemble an English gentleman. But who was he in his own time?

In Alexander the Great, Anthony Everitt judges Alexander’s life against the criteria of his own age and considers all his contradictions. We meet the Macedonian prince who was naturally inquisitive and fascinated by science and exploration, as well as the man who enjoyed the arts and used Homer’s great epic, the Iliad, as a bible. As his empire grew, Alexander exhibited respect for the traditions of his new subjects and careful judgment in administering rule over his vast territory. But his career also had a dark side. An inveterate conqueror who in his short life built the largest empire up to that point in history, Alexander glorified war and was known to commit acts of remarkable cruelty.

jan 122020
 

Enda en interessant lydbok er “fortært”. Her kan man se den på Audibles nettsider – og lese dette om den:

For well over 2,000 years, much of our fundamental “desire to know” has focused on science. Our commitment to science and technology has been so profound that these stand as probably the most powerful influences on human culture. To truly understand our Western heritage, our contemporary society, and ourselves as individuals, we need to know what science is and how it developed.

In this 36-lecture series, one of science’s most acclaimed teachers takes you through science’s complex evolution of thought and discovery, often originating from ideas that by today’s technological perspective might be considered ridiculous or humorous, although many are still relevant today. You’ll consider science’s often fascinating history, from ancient times to the Scientific Revolution, in terms of several penetrating questions, including two of special importance: Who pursued science, and why? What happened, and why?

In the hands of Professor Principe, the history of science becomes far more than just a litany of dates, significant individuals, and breakthrough discoveries. In examining the evolution of science, he restores the vitally important context that has been lost from the discussion, showing how science is characterized by ideas that link eras widely separated in time. A primary theme is the relationship between science and religion. Today, we tend to see the two as separate and even antagonistic. Theology, in fact, is a principal motivator for scientific inquiry. And in the Middle Ages, Christianity and Islam were of paramount importance in preserving and furthering scientific knowledge.

jan 092020
 

New Catholic Register omtaler et program som ble sendt på tysk fjernsyn 3. januar, og som beskriver pave Benedikts liv både nå i Vatikanet og tidligere. Se omtalen av programmet og selve programmet (på tysk). De skriver bl.a.:

Benedict XVI appears mentally alert but noticeably frailer and almost unable to speak in a new German television documentary providing a rare glimpse into his daily life.

In the half-hour film aired on Bayerischer Rundfunk (Bavarian state television) on Jan. 3, the 92-year-old Pope Emeritus speaks only three times but in a barely audible voice.

“I used to have a great voice, now it doesn’t work anymore,” Benedict says in the program, which was filmed at his Mater Ecclesiae monastery residence in the Vatican.

“One sees that his strength isn’t there anymore,” his personal secretary Archbishop Georg Gänswein says in the program. “His voice is simply broken, weaker” but he adds that what is “important” to him is “good company” which “lifts his heart” and that he is “at peace with himself.”

His physical appearance has deteriorated considerably over the past couple of years: the documentary shows Benedict thanking guests at his 90th birthday celebration in 2017 with a stronger though still frail voice.

The bulk of the program, entitled “Little Bavaria in the Vatican” and filmed in September, is biographical, recalling Joseph Ratzinger’s childhood, the main events of his life and his personal preferences, interspersed with past interviews with him as cardinal and pope. … …

jan 062020
 

Det er som nevnt mest historiske bøker jeg har hørt og lest under årets frimåned, og denne om Svarteduden var ganske interessant. På Audibles nettsider kan man lese om den:

Many of us know the Black Death as a catastrophic event of the medieval world. But the Black Death was arguably the most significant event in Western history, profoundly affecting every aspect of human life, from the economic and social to the political, religious, and cultural. In its wake the plague left a world that was utterly changed, forever altering the traditional structure of European societies and forcing a rethinking of every single system of Western civilization: food production and trade, the church, political institutions, law, art, and more. In large measure, by the profundity of the changes it brought, the Black Death produced the modern world we live in today.

While the story of the Black Death is one of destruction and loss, its breathtaking scope and effects make it one of the most compelling and deeply intriguing episodes in human history. Understanding the remarkable unfolding of the plague and its aftermath provides a highly revealing window not only on the medieval world but also on the forces that brought about the Renaissance, the Protestant Reformation, and modernity itself.

Speaking to the full magnitude of this world-changing historical moment, The Black Death: The World’s Most Devastating Plague, taught by celebrated medievalist Dorsey Armstrong of Purdue University, takes you on an unforgettable excursion into the time period of the plague, its full human repercussions, and its transformative effects on European civilization.

des 302019
 

Denne lydboka, som jeg nettopp hørte ferdig, er også en del av Audibles The Great Courses. Om denne kan vi lese:

This is a land of gods and heroes. Here great myths came to life and epic battles were fought, and the wondrous remains of ancient civilizations still call to you from across the centuries.

In The Great Tours: Greece and Turkey, from Athens to Istanbul, award-winning Professor John R. Hale of the University of Louisville is your guide to the fabulous civilizations of the Greeks, Romans, Byzantines, and Ottomans, and to the natural wonders and idyllic landscapes that surround them.

These 24 richly enjoyable lectures give you the chance to experience these important sites and cultures through the eyes of an expert archaeologist and scholar, whose knowledge and depth of insight go far beyond any ordinary travel narrative. In each site, you explore the critical history and culture that defined it and the ways in which it influenced our modern world. These lectures offer both a rich resource for travelers preparing to visit these distant lands and a multilevel cultural journey that can be enjoyed just as well from the comfort of home.

des 282019
 

28. desember 1994 – på festen for DE USKYLDIGE BARN I BETLEHEM – ble jeg opptatt i Den katolske kirkes fulle fellesskap, og mottok konfirmasjonens sakrament og min første hellige kommunion.

Jeg hadde akkurat et år tidligere sagt opp min jobb i Den evangelisk lutherske frikirke i Arendal, og ga meg selv et halvt år til å tenke meg om (og om nødvendig ombestemme meg) før jeg avslutta min lutherske prestetjeneste i juni 1994 – åtte år etter min lutherske ordinasjon – og begynte skikkelig på min opptakelesesprosess.

Bildet viser meg denne dagen sammen med pastor Alan Littlewood og min fadder. Littlewood hadde kjent til mine planer om å bli katolikk siden november 1993, han tok meg opp i Kirken, og han hjalp meg svært mye i min fortsatte forberedelse fram mot ordinasjonen 8. januar 2000.

Om noen få dager er det altså 20 år siden min prestevielse.