St. Norbert was born at Xanten in the Rhineland, about the year 1080. The early part of his life was devoted to the world and its pleasures. He entered upon the ecclesiastical state in a worldly spirit. The thunderstorm had boiled up suddenly as Norbert was out riding. Norbert, who had…
(This is an obligatory reblog because I go to St. Norbert College)
What are your thoughts on Mary and Marian devotion within the Church?
I think that Marian devotion is wonderful for those who find it fruitful. I think that having a strong female role model is very positive. However, I think that when church leaders commandeer Mary to use her as an example of “what a woman should be” by calling her quiet, docile, and subservient, we run into problems. Obviously, we should all be subservient to God, but to use Mary, who I see as a very strong and pro-female figure, as a vehicle to silence women is awful. Mary’s first action is to question the angel, she says yes when all social forces would have told her to say no, she pushed Jesus into public ministry even when he seemed reluctant — she is certainly a powerful woman worthy of our admiration.
Pope Benedict is also known to be fond of cats. As Cardinal Ratzinger he was known to look after stray cats in Rome. A book called “Joseph and Chico: A Cat Recounts the Life of Pope Benedict XVI” was published in 2007 which told the story of the Pope’s life from the feline Chico’s perspective. The story was inspired by an orange tabby Pentling cat, which belonged to the family next door. During his trip to Australia for World Youth Day in 2008 the media reported that festival organizers lent the Pope a grey cat called Bella in order to keep him company during his stay.