Fr. John's Letter Archives

Enjoy re-reading Fr. John's weekly bulletin letters for the past year.


This past June 14 we turned 80!

06-24-2012Fr. John LettersFr. John Bonavitacola

Dear Friends,

This past June 14 we turned 80! And like me, we look good for our age! Over those past 80 years (and the 50 before when Mt. Carmel was a mission parish) many have served and have served well to build up this portion of the Body of Christ here in Tempe. So it is that time a year once again when we say Farewell and Thank You to some of our staff who are moving on and Hello and Welcome to new staff who will now join us.

Over at our Parish School a very fond farewell with lots of gratitude to Mrs. Sharon Kwasnica who was hired by Msgr. McCready while Jimmy Carter was President. After 32 years of teaching our children she moves on to a well-deserved retirement. And over my 12 years at Mt. Carmel I always noticed that she was one of the first teachers to arrive in the morning and the last to leave. We cannot say thank you enough. Also we bid adieu to Mr. David Portillo, who came to us as a second career and was a favorite among the students. Mrs. Julie Smith who this past year was our Fine Arts teacher is movin’ on up to Seton Catholic High School where I am sure she will continue to be a model witness to Christ.

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Whenever we disregard the natural law we always pay a price

06-17-2012Fr. John LettersFr. John Bonavitacola

Dear Friends,

Just about two years ago we watched in horror as the Gulf of Mexico was flooded with oil from a drilling station off the Gulf coast. Lots of damage and pollution followed and many called for a complete ban on drilling for oil in the seas. In this case the responsible party was BP Oil and they have paid for the clean up to the tune of billions of dollars. And that is how it usually goes with polluters, they pay for the cost of the clean up. How often do you see signs that if you litter a fine can be imposed which covers the cost of clean up.

As I pointed out before our waterways are being polluted by a flood of hormones from chemical contraception that are voided by women who use them and which our sewage filtration systems are unable to sufficiently purge. You can read more about it at the US Fish & Wildlife Service section on Environmental Contaminants Program: Endocrine Disruptors. (www.fws.gov/contaminants/Issues/EndocrineDisruptors.cfm)

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New York City is the Abortion capital of the US

06-10-2012Fr. John LettersFr. John Bonavitacola

Dear Friends,

New York City having many distinctions distinctively claims the title of Abortion capital of the US. The latest stats available (2010) show that over 40% of pregnancies are terminated by abortion in the Big Apple including a 48% rate in the Bronx and a 60% rate among African-Americans. Anytime someone suggests that this is an unacceptably high rate and maybe alternatives to abortion should be promoted more, Mayor Bloomberg is quick to declare: hands off women’s bodies, “our bodies, our choice”.

Ironically this is a city where condom/contraception use is heavily promoted and subsidized. The facts show that with increased promotion and access to condoms and contraception rates of abortion do not decrease but rather increase. This is most likely because condoms/contraception increases risky behaviors. So much for the contraception reduces abortions argument.

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The butler did it in the Conservatory with the candelabra

06-03-2012Fr. John LettersFr. John Bonavitacola

Dear Friends,

It was the butler. Really. Who would have thought! The whole episode sounds like a game of Clue: the butler did it in the Conservatory with the candelabra. And I would have guessed Col. Mustard in the Drawing Room with the wrench.

So a member of the Pope’s domestic staff helped leak to the press some purloined confidential documents that he took from the Papal apartments. Apparently too he used sophisticated photo copying cameras often used by spies. All for what? My guess is that the man in question wanted to shore up his future by ingratiating himself with some rising star inside the Vatican so that he would be in a good spot come the next Papacy. But who knows. This rare glimpse into the bloodletting sport of ecclesiastical politics of Vatican City shows how corrupting power can become.

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Atheism with air-conditioning and digital TV

05-27-2012Fr. John LettersFr. John Bonavitacola

Dear Friends,

Catholics need to wake up from the illusion that the America we now live in – not the America of our nostalgia or imagination or best ideals, but the real America we live in here and now – is somehow friendly to our faith. What we’re watching emerge in this country is a new kind of paganism, an atheism with air-conditioning and digital TV. And it is neither tolerant nor morally neutral. — Archbishop Charles Chaput

“For Greater Glory”, a film about the Cristeros resistance to the anti-Catholic government of Mexico in the 1920’s will be in theaters soon. The film is both a glimpse into Mexico’s past with its attempt to secularize the country but also a look ahead at things to come in the USA. The collision between the Church and State over issues like the HHS Mandate as well as a redefinition of marriage implies wreckage for both Church and Civil society. I hope this timely and providential film will give us pause to consider where we stand and how far we are willing to be pushed.

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Call the markets and bankers to greater accountability

05-20-2012Fr. John LettersFr. John Bonavitacola

Dear Friends,

Recently it was reported that JPMorgan-Chase lost $US 2billion in its bond trading. We hear that number and think, “That’s a lot of money to lose”. But how big is it really? We hear these numbers all the time: a million, a billion, a trillion and frankly they are too large to really wrap our heads around. So it may help if we have some reference points.

If we calculate each of these numbers in seconds we might get a better idea of how big is big. So a million seconds is 12 days; a billion seconds is 32yrs; and a trillion seconds is 32,000 years. None of us has a trillion seconds to waste. Another way to look at it is if we calculate how much time it would take to reach one million, one billion and one trillion dollars if we were making $50,000 a year. At the rate of $50,000 it would take 20years to earn a million dollars, it would take 20,000 years to make a billion and it would take a measly 20million years to make a trillion dollars.

This recklessness that seems more and more to permeate our financial markets and government waste doesn’t happen because markets or governments are inherently bad but because of human failure, greed and a self-centered pursuit of wealth.

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