WelCom News
A newspaper for the Wellington and Palmerston North Catholic Dioceses

Becoming fully human

Suffering is part of everyone’s experience. Some people are confronted with enormous suffering in their lives. It may be physical, mental or emotional, but whether it is huge or not, how we deal with pain is crucial on our journey.

This is what religion seeks to help people to do. If we don’t transform this suffering we will inevitably transmit it with disastrous consequences for ourselves and others. Our faith and our relationship with others hold the key to helping us in that transformation.

How to transform this pain is contained in the stories of scriptures where being fully human is explored and encouraged. The story of Jesus’ suffering and death is something we are all confronted with in Passion Week. How do we make sense of it? What can we say about suffering? Why do we suffer?

Fr Walter Vogels is passionate about helping people to become more fully human in their relationships with nature, God and others through exploring stories in scripture. He has studied scripture in Jerusalem, Rome, Leuven, Ottawa and Paris and is currently Professor of Biblical Studies at St Paul University in Ottawa, Canada.

This background enables him to place scripture stories as a backdrop to people’s experience and help them see in a new way the importance of their relationships with nature, God and other people. He has worked with people in dioceses and parishes in various parts of the world and developed a reputation for being able to connect scripture to the lives of ordinary people.

Fr Walter will be in Wellington in this month to share his expertise in biblical themes and how we can deal with pain and grow to be fully human. This is a great opportunity during this season of Lent to hear someone of Fr Walter’s background and experience exploring fundamental issues of being human. Bring your bible and gather others with you to attend his session. Fr Walter will present a session in the Catholic Centre, 22-30 Hill Street, Thorndon, 7.30 – 9.00pm on Tuesday March 11, 2008. There will be a koha to cover costs.

The Wellington Catholic Education Centre is again arranging for this talk to be webcast. For people at the top of the South Island or for those unable to get to the Catholic Centre, it will be possible to log on to catch this presentation. Simply log on to: www.wcec.org.nz and select the link to Fr Walter.

Any inquiries to Peter Bray, Wellington Catholic Education Centre, PO Box 1937, Wellington. E-mail: p.bray@wn.catholic.org.nz. Ph: (04) 296 1710.