Reality Magazine Summer 2019

Reality Magazine Summer 2019




Our leading article this month is a defence of the Catholic tradition of priestly celibacy written by a priest with a wife and four children. Fr Joshua Whitfield was ordained the first time in the American Episcopalian Church. When he and his wife were expecting their first child, they decided to enter the Catholic Church, Joshua took advantage of the privilege given to convert Anglican priests to apply for ordination in the Catholic Church while remaining married. As he puts it: ”My job simply is to be me, a father, a husband, a priest, and faithful as I can be. And in that, I both fail and succeed every day, more times than I can count. Just like you.”

Fr Peter Mulrooney was celibate all his long life as a Redemptorist, dying at the age of 94 in the Philippines. Barely two years ordained, Fr Peter volunteered to serve as a chaplain in World War II. He ended up in the jungles of Burma, serving in one of the toughest regiments, the famous Chindits. “Padre on the River Kwai” tells part of his story as a dedicated chaplain, loved and respected by officers and men for his compassion, humour and bravery. Peter spent the greater part of his life in the Philippines where he was loved as a confessor. As one of his fellow Redemptorists says: “He treated penitents with a lot of understanding. He aimed always at giving them encouragement; the will toc ontinue making efforts; the hope that they will be able to carry out God’s plan in their lives. He had a strong realisation that we are all sinners and because of this he could never be severe or harsh in any way in the confessional.”

Susan Gately introduces us to NET Missions, a community of young people who form seven mission teams, ministering to their contemporaries in parishes and schools, and raising the funding for their work themselves. There are also articles on spiritual direction, bullying, in addition to our usual features – Prayer Corner, God’s Word This Summer (our short reflections on each Sunday’s Gospel, our look at news items from the Catholic world (Reality Bites and Pope Monitor, as well as our regular columnists. “Reflections” is one of our most popular features. This month among others, it quotes the famous actor Gregory Peck who said, “Faith gives you an inner strength and a sense of balance and perspective in life.”

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