Saturday, July 12, 2008

Of Saints and Sinners

This post began as a response to Annabel Crabb's blog entry, St Kevin smites global sinners

My original comment was:

You aren't safe anywhere at present. You can't get way from it even in Melbourne. When returning from the MCG last night after watching the triumphant Saints, I shared a very crowded carriage (the train was late) with 5 schoolgirls from the Oxford Oratory which is a Catholic church/school in England. All dressed in virginal (I mean the blessed one) blue and heading eventually to Sydney for the WYD according to their logos. They must have felt at home. The Sandringham line has such familiar station names as Hampton and Brighton. They were unaware of the origin of the name Balaclava. Perhaps a comment on British History teaching.

If you're not going to Il Pappa's Big Day In, I suggest watching the highlights of Ross Garnaut's Melbourne briefing, A Taste of Garnaut: The Climate Challenge on the web and my blog. Some people might even read the draft report. Remember, a little knowledge is a dangerous thing. I know I've been watching you and your fellow presenters at Microsoft Politics and Technology Forum, also online.
Upon reading The Age on Saturday morning the reason that St.Kilda were not playing at the Docklands stadium became clear. A Catholic Mass was being held there as a lead up to World Youth Day in Sydney. Hence the presence of the teenagers and the train's delay. For the uninitiated St.Kilda is an Australian Football League team. AFL is the other religion in these parts.

Anyway I got to thinking about the sexual abuse scandal which has rocked Sydney's Cardinal Pell before the Pope's visit and have decided that I want an apology on behalf of myself and thousands of others who suffered physical and psychological abuse in Catholic schools in the 1950's and 1960's. If you're not sure about the kind of things I mean, James Joyce's Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man captured some of the flavour. The modern church may well be a more caring and sensitive place. One can only hope so.

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As Parish Priest of the Oxford Oratory, I am glad our girls are making an impression, even if they don't know about the origin of the balaclava. Of course with global warming their mums just don't knit them any more and so the whole of the Crimean war just passes them by! Or you could always blame the history syllabus. Dreadful scratchy things anyway!

Kevin Rennie said...

The topic arose because there is a station on the line called Balaclava, one where I spent much time waiting for trains when I was their age. Pure Australian merino is never scratchy just expensive.

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