Last Things for July 2014

Mother Teresa's life Changed This Priest

Father Joseph Langford, born in Toledo, Ohio, in 1951, ordained as an Oblate of the Virgin Mary in 1978, was studying in Rome when he read Malcolm Muggeridge’s book, Something Beautiful for God, about Mother Teresa, now beatified, then a little known Albanian nun in Calcutta, now Kolkata, India, who devoted her life to serving the dying, desperately poor.

Deeply moved, Father Langford met with her and eventually formed within her Missionaries of Charity a community of priests, the Missionaries of Charity Fathers. He himself wrote books on spirituality, I Thirst for You and Secret Fire. He died in 2010.

‘Christian Unity Is Possible’

Msgr. Charles J. Fairbanks, of the Archdiocese of Philadelphia, ordained in 1990, thinks that Christian unity is possible. An official of the Pontifical Council for Promoting Christian Unity at the Vatican, he well knows the differences between the Catholic Church and other Christian bodies, but he also sees a powerful potential in the common belief in Christ and in the Scriptures.

He recently told Catholic News Service that he encourages people to discover what others believe, and in this awareness create constructive, and respectful, discussion. This can assist in common efforts for good, even if total agreement is not yet present.

Legal in Philly

Since the Quaker leaders of Britain’s Pennsylvania colony were more tolerant, Mass was celebrated legally in St. Joseph’s Church in Philadelphia, the city’s first Catholic church, when it was illegal everywhere else in the British Empire.

Fifty Years Ago

In July 1964, Msgr. John Oesterreicher defended the late Pope Pius XII against charges of minimizing Adolf Hitler’s systematic attempt to eradicate all Jews. Another article looked with alarm at the number of Catholics who are losing identity with the Church.

‘Go in Peace’

Lord, show us your kindness. — Psalm 85