Friday, May 12, 2006

A Week of Medicine

Much of my time and energy this past week was spent at Sloan-Kettering getting ready for the beginning of a full dose of chemotherapy for my recurrent Multiple Myeloma Cancer (bone marrow and blood). Last night they transfused with 2 units of blood to deal with the anemia I have been feeling. Then last night and this morning I began taking the chemo in oral dosage. Too early to say how all this is shaking down within my system but I am feeling a sense of different drugs doing different things in my body. One makes me alert, another makes me drowsy, but most of today went well. I appreciate your prayer and ask you also to pray for all the incredible medical people who are doing so much for me right now and in their research for the long haul.

Monday, May 08, 2006

Amnesty international and Abortion

If accurate, many reports now circulating indicate that Amnesty International is about to add abortion rights to its agenda of human rights. This is a very sad development for many of us who have supported and been inspired by their work. This move is obviously dictated by the agenda of elite ideologies in the developed world and reflects nothing so much as their narrow political agenda. How this change may come about, who is pushing it and how does it get decided? Thus far, all very mysterious, or secret! A very tragic moment for a huge coalition which will now splinter apart over the most fundamental human right - the right to life itself.

Thursday, April 27, 2006

Sant'Egidio, Peace and Prayer

To celebrate the 20th anniversary of John Paul II's historic gathering for peace at Assisi, Sant'Egidio has brought the Peace prayer to the US for the first time here at Georgetown University. I have had the great experience of being here and participating this week. It is surely the most astounding gathering of religious, government and humanitarian leaders in years. Talks, Panels and prayer have been truly wonderful. There is a definite holding up of Andrea Riccardi's theme that war is the mother of all poverty. The US administration sent a State Depart under-secy who clearly knew nothing about the groups she was addressing and gave an offensive call for fighting the terrorists that have eluded her government's grasp. She was received politely. But the overall tenor and dedication, along a true inter-religious and ecumenical reality is astounding and give great hope to this war and poverty ridden world. Pray that the message is spread by all.

Tuesday, April 18, 2006

Easter: The Greatest Mutation

In his homily at the Easter Vigil in St Peter's Basilica, Benedict XVI used a very striking and innovative way of talking about the Resurrection. After dismissing the notion of a resuscitated corpse, he used a fundamental concept of evolutionary theory to establish a whole new way of imaging the Resurrection:

If we may borrow the language of the theory of evolution, [the Resurrection] is the greatest "mutation", absolutely the most crucial leap into a totally new dimension that there has ever been in the long history of life and its development: a leap into a completely new order which does concern us, and concerns the whole of history.

Has there ever been a more powerful and imaginative articulation of how science and faith can provide each other with insight and brilliance?

Sunday, April 16, 2006

Easter Provokes

The idea that millions believe that life comes forth from even the most grisly death stands in a defined contrast with so much that compels our attention in the world and its culture. Death and destruction, a demonic assault on life, human rights and the opportunities of peoples would have believe the worst about ourselves and our neighbors. Yet today there is a graphic testimony of millions who have not surrendered to that deadly resignation. Somehow we continue in a search for better ways to bring that vision of transformed life into reality. It is truly a season of contrast and challenge. For me personally, it also means another go with the cancer that lurks within and which now claims my full attention in this season. As we all pray for ourselves and our world, please also pray that I can accept my illness and the treatments that will begin shortly.