TCA Radio Podcast – “Conversations with Consequences”.

Episode 11: Women in media, with Meg McDonnell and Susie Pinto

Do women make important contributions to the world of work? Yes, absolutely! In this week’s podcast, Grazie is joined by Ashley and Andrea to talk with two Catholic women who are making their mark on the media. Meg McDonnell, editor-in-chief at Verily magazine, discusses her professional ascent and Verily’s purpose to “elevate what is honest, real, and beautiful for the modern woman.” And Susanna (Susie) Pinto shares her unique professional trajectory as a young journalist with the Holy See’s Press Office in Rome, in a busy newsroom in Chicago, and now at the helm of EWTN News as Executive Producer. Susie answers questions about being a woman working at the Vatican and her experience as one among millions during Pope Francis’ visit to the Philippines among other fascinating anecdotes. Don’t miss out hearing from these two fabulous women as well as Father Roger Landry’s inspired thoughts in preparation for Sunday mass.–

1. Clash of Worldviews as Pope and Putin Meet Again.

By Jason Horowitz, The New York Times, July 5, 2019, Pg. A4

Pope Francis is viewed by many European liberals as the greatest moral voice against the resurgence in populism and the demonization of migrants.

But for many European nationalists, anti-migration politicians and opponents of gay rights, the real spiritual strongman of their movement is the Russian president, Vladimir V. Putin, their alternate pope.

So when Mr. Putin visited the Vatican on Thursday, it was more than a mere meeting — their third — between the two men. Rather it was a tête-à-tête between the standard bearers of competing views of Christianity on the European continent as ideological polarization between nationalists and liberals cleaves the West.

2. Pilgrimage Road and Palestinian Memory.

By Meir Soloveichik, The Wall Street Journal, July 5, 2019, Pg. A13, Houses of Worship

It was a striking sight: David Friedman, the U.S. ambassador to Israel, wielding a sledgehammer at an archaeological site in Jerusalem. But his presence there was about more than a unique photo-op. It began 15 years ago, when construction workers repairing a burst sewage pipe discovered an ancient staircase directly south of the Temple Mount. The steps closely matched stairs abutting the original ancient entryways of the temple complex. Archaeologists realized that the sets of stairs were linked. They had chanced upon a road leading to the temple. After years of excavations, members of the public soon will be able to walk the Pilgrimage Road.

Two thousand years ago Jews traversed this path as they came from around the world to visit the temple. Such pilgrims were obeying a biblical commandment. Deuteronomy obligated Israelites to stand in the presence of God three times a year: Passover, Pentecost and Tabernacles. Rabbinic texts abound with descriptions of the processions that occurred, and the road parallels these details in an exquisite way. 

Millions of Jews and non-Jews ardently pray for peace in Jerusalem. Yet in an age where actual facts are all too often eschewed for “personal narrative,” the Pilgrimage Road is another reminder that peace can only be attained through the recognition of historical truth. The ambassador and the administration he represents deserve credit for recognizing the facts on the ground—or, rather, underneath it.

Mr. Soloveichik is the rabbi of Congregation Shearith Israel in Manhattan and director of the Straus Center for Torah and Western Thought at Yeshiva University.

3. The sainthood of John Henry Newman a chance for left-right unity in the Church.

By Charles Collins, Crux, July 5, 2019

This week’s announcement that Blessed John Henry Newman will be made a saint on Oct. 13 was greeted with celebration from all corners.

The 19th century British cardinal was a convert, and before becoming a Catholic he was one of the most prominent members of the Anglo-Catholic branch of Anglicanism.

Newman is considered a precursor to Vatican II: His writings on the Church Fathers anticipated the ressourcement theology of the mid-20th century, and his emphasis on the conscience and explanations of the development of doctrine have been a central point of post-conciliar theology.

This is not to say Newman was a modern-day liberal, he would have hardly felt the need to face the stigma of becoming Catholic in Victorian England if that were the case.

But it does put the new saint in an interesting category: He is embraced by most of both the Catholic left and right not so much for the holiness of his life – which for a saint, strangely doesn’t get a lot of print – but for his theology.

4. Vatican and French Church decry decision to remove hydration from Vincent Lambert.

By Claire Giangravè, Crux, July 5, 2019

Despite repeated appeals by family members and Catholic leaders, including Pope Francis, on Tuesday doctors began to withdraw life support from quadriplegic Frenchman Vincent Lambert, 42, who has been in a vegetative state for over 10 years.

“Why won’t you listen to us? Vincent is a human being, not an object,” said Lambert’s mother before the International Committee on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities July 1, where she pleaded against the “legal assassination of our son.”

“Vincent is not a vegetable,” she added. “I’ve never seen a vegetable turn its head when it’s called. I have many pictures and videos that prove exactly the contrary of what can be read on the papers.”

In 2008, Lambert was severely injured during an accident aboard his motorcycle that left him dependent but did not hinder his ability to breath and survive. He is the father of a girl born shortly before the accident.

5. Warnings about West Virginia bishop went unheeded as he doled out cash gifts to Catholic leaders.

By Robert O’Harrow Jr. and Shawn Boburg, The Washington Post, July 4, 2019, Pg. A1

Senior Catholic leaders in the United States and the Vatican began receiving warnings about West Virginia Bishop Michael J. Bransfield as far back as 2012. In letters and emails, parishioners claimed that Bransfield was abusing his power and misspending church money on luxuries such as a personal chef, a chauffeur, first-class travel abroad and more than $1 million in renovations to his residence.

But Bransfield’s conduct went unchecked for five more years. He resigned in September 2018 after one of his closest aides came forward with an incendiary inside account of years of sexual and financial misconduct, including the claim that Bransfield sought to “purchase influence” by giving hundreds of thousands of dollars in cash gifts to senior Catholic leaders.

6. Putin visits Pope Francis on July 4th .

By Courtney Grogan, Catholic News Agency, July 4, 2019, 8:30 AM

Russian President Vladimir Putin met with Pope Francis at the Vatican July 4 for a 55-minute private discussion.

Pope Francis and Putin discussed current affairs in Syria, Ukraine, and Venezuela, as well as environmental issues and questions concerning the Catholic Church in Russia, according to the Holy See Press Office.

“Thank you for the time you have devoted to me,” Putin said after his audience with Pope Francis in the Vatican’s Apostolic Palace.

It was Putin’s third meeting with Pope Francis and fifth visit to the Vatican. The Russian leader arrived nearly an hour late for his meeting with the pope, as he did for both of his prior meetings with Francis.

7. Judge blocks Ohio abortion law, clinics to remain open.

By Julie Carr Smyth and Kantele Franko, The Associated Press, July 3, 2019

A federal judge temporarily blocked an Ohio law banning abortions after a fetal heartbeat is detected on Wednesday, siding with abortion clinics that had argued the law would effectively end the procedure in the state.

The ruling by U.S. District Judge Michael Barrett halts the July 11 enforcement of the so-called heartbeat bill law that opponents argued would effectively ban the procedure. That is because a fetal heartbeat can be detected as early as six weeks into pregnancy, before many women know they are pregnant.

8. Believing in the Sacrament of Marriage.

By Fr. Roger Landry, Nuptial Mass of Sean “Jack” Corkery and Sarah Peterson, July 3, 2019

The following text guided today’s homily: 

July 3 in the Church’s liturgical calendar is the feast of St. Thomas the Apostle. He is known most commonly, and most unfortunately, by the title “Doubting Thomas” for expressing his incredulity at the news from his fellow apostles that, on the evening of Easter while Thomas absent from their hideout in the Upper Room, Jesus had appeared to them risen from the dead. Thomas wanted proof. He wanted to touch Jesus’ wounds. He wanted to ensure that what the apostles’ saw was not some phantasm but the Jesus he knew had been crucified the previous Friday. Even though Jesus had told Thomas and the other apostles three times that he would be betrayed, tortured, crucified and raised on the third day, and even though those first three verbs had all been fulfilled, Thomas just couldn’t yet accept the fourth. Jesus mercifully returned, invited Thomas to probe his pierced hands and side, and made the exodus from unbelief to faith. Thomas responded with a profound profession of the Risen Lord’s divinity, “My Lord and my God,” words that so many in the Church continue to echo as Jesus is elevated each day at the altar. Jesus told Thomas that he was blessed because he had seen him, but said blessed even more would be those who haven’t seen but believed.

Today around this marriage bed of Christ’s spousal union, Msgr. Klinzing, your parents, family and friends join me in praying that the Lord who prepared you both for this day from before you were born and brought you together here to this altar will continue to bring the holy vocation and mission he has given you to completion. We pray with you, through the intercession of Saint Thomas, that the Lord will bless you who have not seen but believed with every spiritual blessing in the heavens and through you and your holy matrimony never stop blessing us all.

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