MICHAEL O'BRIEN NAS NAKON PUTA PO EUROPI UPUĆUJE NA KATOLIČKE IZDAVAČKE KUĆE I POJEDINCE S KOJIMA ZAJEDNO RADI NA NOVOJ EVANGELIZACIJI
During my recent journey through Europe I met many outstanding young Catholics involved in the new evangelization. Below is a sampling of a few such people:
In Poland I met two film-makers, Lech Dokowicz and Maciej Bodasinski who have made several documentary films. Their most recent is Syndrom, which is about post-abortion syndrome. Here is the web link to the Polish film maker Dokowicz:
A short trailer can be viewed on Youtube:
In the city of Torun in central Poland I visited the television and radio headquarters of Radio Maria, which broadcasts to millions of people daily. Recently the Redemptorist Fathers who founded RM have also built a college in Torun, which opened five years ago. Wyższa Szkoła Kultury Społecznej i Medialnej (The College of Social and Media Culture) has a student body of 600 and a faculty of high quality, with primary focus on media and evangelization. My tour of the institution left me stunned, amazed that so much could be accomplished so quickly and so well, all built on the donations of ordinary Polish Catholics. As it is throughout the world, the key is sacrifice. Please visit the college's website at:
Please do not forget our own small Catholic college, where I am Artist and Writer in residence, the extraordinary Our Lady Seat of Wisdom, which continues to grow despite all odds, built on a foundation of sacrifice and continual prayer. You can visit our website at:
On the website you will also find a video of a talk I gave on behalf of OLSW, on the topic of Faith and Culture and Education:
Today on the memorial of St. Charles Borromeo I can't fail to mention the great community of missionary priests, the Fraternity of San Carlo Borrromeo, which has its novitiate in Rome. They were gracious hosts to me during my stay in the city, and I enjoyed wonderful conversations with their novice master Don Jonah Lynch and with the superior of the order, Don Massimo Camisasca. Don Massimo has written a most beautiful book of reflections on the priesthood:Father: will there be priests in the Church's future? The answer is a resounding "Yes!" and he tells us why in terms that are human and supernatural. Currently the English version of this book is not yet published (I've read it in manuscript form only), but I will inform you when it becomes available.
Until then, you may wish to learn more about this great young order at their website:
In Croatia I was a guest of one of my two publishers in that country. Mate Krajina has for more than twenty years been the editor of a Catholic magazine, MI, which began publishing underground during the Communist era. Mate was arrested more than once for his Catholic activities, and after the fall of the Communist regime and the birth of an independant Croatia, he and other young people under the guidance of Fr. Jozo Mario Tolj spread this Catholic youth movement throughout the country and into Bosnia-Herzegovina as well. He recently founded a new publishing house named Treci Dan, (the third day), which has published four of my books in translation. Verbum publishers in Split, who are also good friends, have also published four different titles of mine.
Like many lay apostles throughout the world, Mate Krajina is one of those heroes of Faith who quietly proceed about the new evangelization with severely limited resources and an abundance of faith. The opposition, both visible and invisible, is continuous, but they do not give up. Mate has said that in some ways the obstacles he now faces are far greater than those he and others faced during the Communist era. The mask of materialism hides an enormous power of seduction and propaganda, and usually it achieves its most destructive effects through the medium of culture. It does not appear to be an obvious tyrant, because it rewards us with many pleasures and relieves us of burdensome responsibilities even as it numbs the conscience and bends the mind. Indeed this new kind of totalitarianism tyrannizes the lives of practically everyone. To create authentic culture in the face of this goliath is a daunting task.
I encourage you to visit the website of Treci Dan, and if at all possible to support it in whatever way you can:
What I have written above regarding Treci Dan applies equally to another new Catholic publishing house, Fides et Traditio, founded in Poland by Fr. Tomasz Jegierski. F & T has published four of my books, and other titles are in translation process. Polish readers may wish to visit the website at:
English readers can visit:
Stephen Lawrence, the director of Catechesis and Evangelization for World Youth Day in Sydney, has written a fascinating account of that event titled Five Smooth Stones. Written with freshness and colour, it is full of compact stories that reveal the hand of Divine Providence at work in countless ways, in countless lives. No one who attended WYD08 went home unchanged, and those who were there can relive it through these pages. Those who were unable to attend will taste and enjoy one of the great blessings of God in our times. Our Australian subscribers may wish to attend the book launching on November 8th in Sydney, hosted by Cardinal Pell at 3 Keating Street, Lidcombe, 7:30 p.m. Those interested in purchasing the book can visit the publisher's web page at:
During my six-week journey I met many gifted writers, journalists, artists, and media people. The ones I have mentioned here are representative of a large body of men and women who humbly proceed about the new evangelization with vision and courage. I repeat this word—courage. Courage founded on their desire to feed this generation good food, and their supernatural confidence in the coming victory of Christ. Courage grounded in sacrifice, the willingess to offer everything (and even lose everything) for the good of other souls. I cannot mention them all lest this newsletter become something of a catalogue. I do ask you, however, to continue to pray for our brothers and sisters in the world who labour with Christ and for Christ in the midst of much adversity.
Finally, some news about my own work. My new book, Waiting: stories for Advent, has just been published by Justin Press. Those who live in the Ottawa region may wish to attend the book launching on Tuesday, November 16th, 5:30 to 8:30 p.m. The event will be held in the conference hall beneath St. Patrick's basilica, the corner of Kent and Gloucester Streets, Ottawa). I will be giving a short talk and will be available for book signing. For more information you can call Justin Press at 613 729-2247 or visit their website at:
God bless you one and all,
In Christ our Saviour,