I am a daughter, sister, wife and mother, blessed with two wonderful children, now adults who, like me, have been raised in the Catholic faith. We call Hawaii home now and find in its aloha spirit much that is akin to what Catholicism at its best teaches.
My religious sense is something I gained first from my mother, Gladys Morais whose vibrant and independent faith is perhaps best reflected in her constant exhortation to us that “what you receive from God in one hand, you give away with the other.” No, she is not a Communist nor a Socialist–whatever those labels mean in the perverse public rhetoric of today. She is however a champion of social justice. It is that same sense of social justice that I gained through my education with Franciscan nuns in Malaysia. I learned about Pope John XXIII and Vatican 2 in catechism class with Sr. Enda (Sr. Mena Ryan) headmistress of Assunta School in Petaling Jaya, Malaysia.
I remember her saying that Pope John XXIII opened the windows of the Vatican to let the fresh air in …and encountered a gale!
The winds that are blowing through the Church today are less invigorating than they are threatening. Like the fundamentalism and xenophobia that threatens the peace in so many places, the sometimes hostile rhetoric of the institutional church today is turning away thinking Catholics who find some of the Church’s teachings and positions in direct contradiction with what we believe we are called to do as followers of the social teachings of the Gospel.
This blog is an attempt to reconnect to those central teachings and to find community with others who refuse to be blind followers of a largely out-of-touch Church bureaucracy but who continue to try to be Catholic in ways that promote peace and justice in today’s troubled world.
This blog is designed and initiated with the help of a talented designer and fellow Catholic, Sun Hee Kim. Mahalo!
Dawn Morais Webster
Sep 10, 2010