Christmas Eve carolers for Cardinal Pell gathered at Melbourne prison
Ed Condon/CNA 26 December, 2019
A group of local Catholics gathered outside Melbourne prison on Christmas Eve to sing carols for Cardinal George Pell, currently incarcerated in the facility, and to pray for him, as well as the other inmates and prison staff.
At 8pm on December 24, about two dozen local Catholics gathered outside Melbourne Assessment Prison on the west side of the city center to sing Christmas carols and to pray for the cardinal and others in the jail.
One of the singers, John McCauley told CNA that “We just wanted the Cardinal to know he was loved and remembered at Christmas.” The songs included traditional carols like O Come All Ye Faithful and Once in Royal David’s City, as well as Australian favorites like The Three Drovers. Singers wrote messages of support and Christmas greetings in a copy of the carol book, which was left for Pell at the prison’s front desk.
There will be many Christmas greetings from public figures before most of us have flaked after too much Christmas cheer. I don’t think anyone will do better than Daisy Cousens on the true meaning of Christmas. Highly recommended youtube channel. See the video HERE.
Andrew Bolt presents an informative discussion about the historical evidence for the existence of Jesus Christ, the Second Person of the Blessed Trinity. It’s a tribute to agnostic Bolt that he treats with respect and admiring interest a subject continually mocked and ridiculed by the ignorant and superficial. See the video HERE.
Dr Taylor Marshall makes a compelling case for the 25th of December as Jesus’s birth.
One of the most enjoyable features of Christmas dinner in Australia has been the Christmas plum pudding. The first settlers to Australia brought its ritual and tradition. It was to be expected, of course, that my family whose ancestors came from the British Isles before 1840 would follow the ritual and tradition with much joy and enthusiasm. The reader will find an excellent description of the plum pudding and its cultural background on the most informative of the many websites on Jane Austen and her world: The Christmas plum pudding and old English foodie tradition.
One of my earliest childhood memories is of my mother helping my grandmother prepare the Christmas pudding for Christmas dinner. It was pretty much as described on Jane Austen’s World website, including the stirring of the bowl.
That tradition has carried on. Until my mother passed away well into her nineties, she used to watch on as daughters, grandchildren and great-grandchildren stirred the pudding mixture. An indispensable part of the ritual was the mixing in of thruppences, sixpences, shilling and two shilling pieces which my parents had kept after the cultural destructive introduction of dollars and cents in 1966. Those lucky enough to find pennies and shillings in their slice of plum pudding could exchange them for higher value but colourless cents.
One is not usually conscious when reading the Scriptures that there are many different translations. One simply reads the text endeavouring to follow the narration and understand the meaning. I must admit, though, that the style and language usage of what I am sometimes reading comes across as wooden, fractured and archaic without the grace of some ancient writing, all of which makes the meaning obscure. I have been in the habit of thinking myself lacking understanding rather than blame the text.
Some years ago I was reading some passages from the New Testament when I suddenly became aware that my mind had come on the text as a train rides on the perfect fit of the railway track. The language was my language and I was inside the narration. There was none of that woodenness or forced rigidity of language that I often experienced. I had no way of knowing which translation it was. Sometime later, I picked up the New Testament edition I had been given back in 1959 when starting secondary school. Upon reading I realised it was the same translation that had engaged me so naturally. It was Mgr Ronald Knox’s translation. Continue reading The Christmas story according to St Luke, translated by Mgr Ronald Knox