Tuesday, March 31, 2009

My April Newsletter Column -- a day early.

Greetings again from Montreal.

Here is a benefit to readers of my blog -- my monthly CMH newsletter column a day early. Enjoy!


As you received the Edline message that the monthly newsletter was available online, I am in Montreal, Quebec for a few days of vacation. Not originally by choice mind you, but taking a short vacation nonetheless. Basically, I had a previous trip to Canada cancelled last year and needed to use the ticket by mid-April or lose it. So, here I am.

After I forced myself to plan the trip I began to get excited. Where else can I visit a French language, Marian dedicated Cathedral, Ste. Marie Reine du Monde, which is a near exact 1/3 size replica of St. Peter’s in Rome, and then go over a Basilica dedicated to St. Patrick. What more can a good Irish Catholic priest hope for?

But alas, I cannot visit just churches and museums. A few weeks ago my brother, sister, and a mutual friend all decided to tag along on the trip. Their most significant contribution – after a day of churches, we are all going to the NHL hockey game pitting the Montreal Canadiens against the Chicago Blackhawks. Talk about moving from the sacred to the profane in very short order. But, truthfully, such is not all bad.

The balance struck by circumstance (taking a vacation before tickets expire) and positive peer pressure (going to see a hockey game) can be a good thing. In fact, it is a balance that we should all strive for in our lives. Having a vibrant life of faith, with knowledge of history and tradition, does not prevent us from appreciating, and even excelling, in the world.

I know that this is a balance which we work to foster for our students here at CMH. Good Catholic education is about passing on not only content, but balance – chapel informs classroom; classroom informs stage, studio and arena; stage, studio and arena are places to live out our faith. At CMH we strive each day to give our young people all that is needed to strike this balance in their lives.

In these remaining days of Lent, please allow the Lord to work through your commitments to prayer, penance, and almsgiving, so that you work, and your play may be properly in balance. Balanced for the greater glory of God!

Le Seigneur soit avec vous,

Very Reverend Paul Hartmann

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