Monday, February 15, 2010

Blogger Mayday

Blogger has announced that the small percentage of weblogs using its software but not hosted on its Blogspot servers will lose FTP support. The change has now been postponed to May 1, 2010.

Since this blog is hosted elsewhere, I will have to decide whether to switch to other blogging software, move the blog to Blogspot, or discontinue it.

Switching to, say, WordPress involves a conversion that might be supported by my hosting service, but will take some time.

Moving to Blogspot is unappealling for a couple reasons. Cross-reference links will go dead unless changed. There is no support for pdf documents.

There's always the option to end the blogging experiment, though there are a few other things on the website that would lead me to keep the rest of the site up. I don't know how accessible the blog archive would be.

Mulling; meanwhile comments moderated.

Sunday, February 14, 2010

Book travel: Dresden

A Fair Maiden, review by Todd VanDerWerff, of 'A Fair Maiden', by Joyce Carol Oates

Getting to Slaughterhouse Five in Dresden, Germany

Better to React Than to Act, by Tim Wogan (via Joe Carter at First Things)

Ring Lardner, by F. Scott Fitzgerald, The New Republic, October 11, 1933

Wallace Stevens, New York and Modernism, conference March 4-6, 2010, Jerry H. Labowitz Theatre for the Performing Arts, 1 Washington Place, New York, NY

The Rage of Virginia Woolf, by Theodore Dalrymple (via Jay Nordlinger The Corner)

Reading Rat: Recommended reading by these authors.

Also of interest: Darrell Huff and Fifty Years of 'How to Lie with Statistics', by J. Michael Steele (via Wikipedia)


Friday, February 12, 2010

One less school bell to answer

Our Archdiocesan weekly reports St. James School, Mukwonago to close.

At the other end of the Archdiocese, it is claimed that last year's Merger ensures future of Catholic education in Fond du Lac.

See Catholic Schools Remaining Week


Thursday, February 11, 2010

Unplugging their pull

What makes somebody an expert "bioethicist" — other than a "willingness to issue life-and-death pronouncements involving other people"? --Ann Althouse


Arrayed like one of these

Pat McCaughan reported at Episcopal Life Online Missouri priest discovers 'What Not to Wear'
"Most of my wardrobe issues came from the issues priests face," [Rev. Emily] Bloemker said. "The division between private and public life; whether … to step into the role of a priest do I need to leave parts of myself behind, or does sexuality have a place in the priesthood?"
(via Midwest Conservative Journal)

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Advance on the cluster front

If you follow Archdiocesan developments more closely than I do, you might have already learned there now appear to be Cluster Councils.

Seems like it was not even four and one-half years ago I heard my parish's cluster had its own logo.


Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Archbishop Listecki at 'On the Issues with Mike Gousha'

February 16, 2010 12:15 p.m. at Marquette University Law School
On the Issues with Mike Gousha: The Most Reverend Jerome E. Listecki Milwaukee’s new Archbishop joins us to offer his perspective on the role of the Church in the 21st century, and the opportunities and challenges facing the Milwaukee Archdiocese.
Space permitting, you can reserve online.


Monday, February 8, 2010

Archbishop Listecki to Receive His Pallium from the Pope on 6/29/10 in Rome

On June 29, the Feast of Saints Peter and Paul, the Pope will confer upon Archbishop Jerome E. Listecki the Pallium, signifying an archbishop’s ecclesial and pastoral authority, in union with the Pope, over the metropolitan province of the Archdiocese of Milwaukee entrusted to his care. ...
There is a link regarding a tour/pilgrimage available.


Sunday, February 7, 2010

Old Macdonald

Joyce Carol Oates on Joyce Carol Oates, by Alexandra Alter, on 'A Widow's Memoir', by Joyce Carol Oates (via Arts & Letters Daily)

Money and Manners, by Christopher Caldwell, review of 'Manhattan Monologues', by Louis Auchincloss (via Joseph Bottum at First Things)

Walker Percy at Notre Dame: on receiving the Laetare Medal from the University of Notre Dame at the 1989 Commencement (via Charlotte was Both)

Why Do People Love 'Catcher in the Rye'? by Gish Jen

Giving Emerson the Boot, by William Major and Bryan Sinche

Bible Study, by Rich Cohen, review of 'Good Book: The Bizarre, Hilarious, Disturbing, Marvelous and Inspiring Things I Learned When I Read Every Single Word of the Bible', by David Plotz

Reading Rat: Recommended reading by these authors.

Also of interest: Bring Back Dwight! by John Summers, review of 'Against the American Grain', by Dwight Macdonald


Friday, February 5, 2010

Hear Scott Hahn and Bryan Massingale

Dr. Scott Hahn and Fr. Bryan Massingale are among presenters, though not together, at Lenten events on the Archdiocesan calendar. Go to both and offer one up.
"Breaking the Yoke of Poverty and Racism: A Reflection in Light of God's Mercy" - Thursday, February 18, 2010, 7:00 p.m. at St. Margaret Mary Parish, Milwaukee

A prayer service, led by Fr. Bryan Massingale, will reflect on the divisions in our communities and how we can respond. ...
“Lord Have Mercy” Conference – Saturday, April 10, 2010 at St. Jerome Parish, Oconomowoc -- Featured presenters: Dr. Scott Hahn and Matthew Kelly; Archbishop Listecki will preside at the Opening Mass and Bishop Callahan will preside at the Closing Prayer Service. ...
The theme for Lent 2010 is Season of Mercy.

Thursday, February 4, 2010

Open agenda, hidden minutes

The St. Al's website has been revised. It's a nice clean design by Faithwebsites; better than FWS's own site, I'd say.

The Parish Council page has this description.
The Parish Council is both the process and structure which enables parishioners to share more fully in the task of continuing the Church's work in the parish neighborhood. Its primary role is to call forth and affirm the gifts present within the community to meet the pastoral needs of God's people and to make Christ present among us.
The page finally removed any reference to the council's minutes. Perhaps the long-standing indication these would be published online is about to be fulfilled. That could be part of the sharing and calling forth.
Through its committees, called Standing Committees, the Council extends the mission of Jesus in this time and place.
Some might question the potential ambiguity of "extends" in the context of church committee meetings.
New Council members are selected each Spring through a parish-wide process of prayerful discernment.
There are nomination cards distributed at Mass, but that's not literally parish-wide given only a minority of parishioners show up. Last I knew, the subsequent meeting discerns if the number of candidates exceeds the number of vacancies to fill, which it usually doesn't.

The February 4, 2010 council meeting agenda is in last Sunday's bulletin.


Wednesday, February 3, 2010

Catholic Schools Remaining Week

This week is Catholic Schools Week notes our Archdiocese of Milwaukee.

Last week our Archdiocesan weekly reported Kenosha, Racine focus on middle school collaboration. In Kenosha,
Operating under the umbrella of St. Joseph Academy in Kenosha, officials will slash operating costs by utilizing a single principal and administrative board between St. Mark School and the current St. Joseph High School and Interparish Junior High School.
In Racine
While not combining schools as in Kenosha, Racine St. Catherine High School will be implementing the middle school grades into its program beginning next fall; they already have 25 students registered for the sixth grade class.
While no schools have acknowledged a plan to shut down or eliminate grades for the 2010-11 academic year, SCHS hopes to be pro-active in having an attractive educational option if such decisions are made.
On that point, the only rumor I heard said to expect school closings under Archbishop Listecki, indicating it was inevitable, not that it is on a hidden agenda of his. And if you read the Faith In Our Future Mission Statement, it's quite broad on what qualifies. It does not literally say it's about keeping more schools open.


Tuesday, February 2, 2010

Trust unto others

Last Sunday's St. Al's bulletin had an item asking Did We Confuse You? Confuse parishioners with asking for the annual parish pledge cards and Archdiocesan capital campaign pledge cards together, that is.

On the parish pledge,
Just as the parish has to trust these pledges will be honored, in the same way, the parish asks you to trust your gifts will be used in the most appropriate way possible.
On the Archdiocesan capital campaign pledges,
Once donations come to the Faith In Our Future Trust, the Archdiocese records the gift on the individual accounts. Once a month, the Faith In Our Future Trust transfers 100% of all the donations received by them from you to a special bank account of the parish. Once the parish receives these donations from the Trust, it restricts those gifts according to the intent listed above. Again, just as the parish trusts one’s pledge will be honored, it is asking for additional trust from you that the monies received will be used for the intended purposes mentioned.
Our pastor said at a Sunday Mass that the parish photocopies parishioners' checks before mailing them to the Faith In Our Future Trust. "Trust, but verify" he summed up.

Along those lines, I have stopped filling out the parish pledge card unless I get the current Status Animarum Report with the parish's historical statistics. It's not distrust; I merely want everything verified in writing from another source.


Monday, February 1, 2010

Planning for and in the future

The Parish Planning Resources page at the Archdiocese of Milwaukee website now says, if you check "Publications" in the sidebar,
The Vision/Ministry Planning Process will not be posted on the website until the new Archbishop has an opportunity to review and edit its contents. The deadline for submission of the vision/ministry plans has been moved from June 30, 2010 to June 30, 2011.
The program is now called VISION: 21st Century.
After more than 15 years and three cycles of archdiocesan planning initiatives, we find ourselves at the dawn of a new millennium in need of a comprehensive plan for Mission and Ministry. VISION: 21st Century will help us articulate a plan for the Church in the Archdiocese of Milwaukee and chart our course for the 21st century.
So by 2011 Archdiocesan planning expects to be ready to look ahead to 2001.

P.S. Looking ahead through this decade, they could have called it VISION: 2020. Even put pupils in the zeroes. And add glasses. Maybe black horn rims like Archbishop Weakland wore in his early official portraits. Next you think "Buddy Cardinal Holly". Then one day you realize you could have substituted "Paul Marcoux" for "Peggy Sue"; it's a slippery slope.