Wednesday, September 06, 2006

Auntie Joanna writes.....

7th September 2006

This is my Birthday and my first BLOG.

Some years ago I wrote a weekly column for the Catholic Times newspaper. It was a diary and we called it "Seven Days with Joanna Bogle". The idea was to pass on useful ideas and information that came my way as a Catholic journalist. I will follow this same plan with this Blog.

It seems that the convention when starting a Blog to explain the identity of the author. I am a writer and live in London with my husband Jamie who is a lawyer. I hurry about and write books and also feature articles for newspapers. My object, in writing a blog, is to pass on information and to comment on issues of general interest and specifically those relating to the Catholic Church.

I take as an inspiratiion these words from the Holy Father, Benedict XVI, writing when he was Joseph Cardinal Ratzinger, in a collection just published under the title Values in a Time of Upheaval (Ignatius Press, San Francisco, 2006. Hugely recommended): "The historical experiences of man, which have been reflected in the great religions, are an abiding source of knowledge and provide directives for reasons that apply even to those who do not identify with any one of these great traditions. The attempt to think and to live without any contact with these great traditions would be an arrogance that ultimately leaves man helpless and empty."

He wrote this with specific reference to the importance of marriage - as a lifelong union between a man and a woman, open to children. Elsewhere in the same collection of essays, commenting on this same topic he writes: "Monogamous marriage, as the basic structure for the relationship between a man and woman and as the cell for the construction of civic society, has been formed by biblical faith. It has given Europe - East and West - its specific "face" and its specific human character, precisely because one must struggle again and again to realise the form of fidelity and of renunciation that monogamous marriage by its very nature requires. Europe would cease to be Europe if this basic cell of social construction were to disappear or to be changed in its essence. We vare all aware of the risks confronting marriage and the family today - partly because its indissolubility is watered down by an ever-easier access to divorce, and partly because of the increasing cohabitation of men and women without the legal form of marriage.

"The paradoxical modern demand of homosexual partnerships to receive a legal form that is more or less the equivalent of marriage is a clear antithesis to this tradition. This trend departs from the entire moral history of mankind which - despite all the variety in the legal forms governing marriage - has always been aware that this is essentially a special form of the relationship of men and women, open to children and hence to the formation of a family. This is not a question of discrimination. Rather, we must ask what man is as manand as woman, and how we may coirrectly shape the relationship between them,. If this relationship becomes increasingly detached from legal forms, while at the same time homosexual partnerships are increasingly viewed as equal in rank to marriage, we are on the verge of dissolution of our concept of man, and the consequences can only be extremely grave"


Joanna Bogle said...

this is just a test comment

elderly_relative said...

Dear Joanna,
Many Happy Returns and Congratulations on joining the Blogsphere, from Christopher Pearson.
We met in Adelaide, with Paul Russell, and dined in the South Australian Parliament as guests of Jack Snelling,who's recently been appointed the new Speaker.
I hope that you intend to speak your mind on the problems of the English Church, and to flesh out Pope Benedict's gnomic summary:"The problem is the English bishops".

Paulinus said...

Welcome to the blogosphere. I'll link to you soon as I can


Iacobus said...

Welcome indeed!

Looking forward to reading your blog.

Fr Nicholas said...

Yes, welcome! I'll put a link to your blog ASAP.

Joanna Bogle said...

Dear Christopher

How lovely to hear from you. I am only just learning the art of blogging, so I hope this message reaches you....of course I remember that glorious lunch in the South Australian Parliament - fabulous building, an excellent meal in (???newly restored??) 19th century splendour, a vaguely colonial-exile feel to the day, and some pleasing moments when I left all the gentlemen to their wine and went for an exploration all by myself (portraits, grand staircases, long panelled corridors,high ceilings, dark gleaming polished wood everywhere....) and returned to join you all on a stately balcony overlooking the city.

I hope my blog will help to keep you posted on news here. I'm writing on a September morning, with Michaelmas daisies in the garden and the fresh feeling of Autumn in the air after some rather stifling days....

Jamie joins me in sending warmest wishes...

Anonymous said...

Welcome to the blogiverse.

Are you going to let Jamie guest occasionally?

Even allowing for lawyers confidentiality there are topics on which he would be worth reading too!

Anonymous said...

Dear Great-Auntie Joanna,

I really like your blog - one day I'll be old enough to read it! Do you have any pictures that you could put on it for me to look at until I can?!

With lots of love,

Hugh Ambrose
(aged 0.25 years)