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The world's eyes on Tulsa

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The globalization of information is something we live with every day, so much so that we take it for granted. But every once in a while, some thing happens that draws one's attention to the fact that news, information, is global and that diverse people have common interests

As a case in point, take a look at this sampling of sources and headlines for the last two days or so:

From NCR: Okla. bishop no longer faces people at Mass
From NewsOK.com: Tulsa Bishop to no longer face congregation during Mass
From InfoCatólica: El obispo de Tulsa, Oklahoma, reinstaura la posición «Ad Orientem»
From RKnieuws: Amerikaanse bisschop draagt mis weer op 'met rug naar het volk'
From Le Nouvelliste: À Tulsa (Oklahoma), l'évêque célèbre désormais « ad orientem »
From Agenzia di Stampa Asca: Vescovo usa celebrera' messa con le 'spalle al popolo'
From La Vie: Au Far West, la messe passe à l'Est
From TTX Công Giáo Vi?t Nam: Thánh L? Quay V? H??ng ?ông (Ch'nh trong chi?u h??ng ?y, ??c Cha Edward Slattery, ...)

I guess that it just goes to show you that a good story has legs.

Ted Kennedy: A Lion for Nuclear Disarmament

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Yesterday in this space I reported that in an interview I had with Ted Kennedy in 1981 he said that nuclear disarmament was the greatest challenge we faced as a nation, indeed, as a world family.

Not surprisingly, others are similarly reporting Kennedy's support for ridding the planet of these immoral weapons (Immoral, yes, because, by their very nature [size and contaminants], they cannot discriminate between combatants and noncombatants.)

My encounters with Ted Kennedy

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I had two personal encounters with Ted Kennedy. The first was in Saigon in 1967 when I met him for dinner. We talked about war refugees. The second was almost 15 years later. We met in Washington. We talked about nuclear war and global poverty.

During the Vietnam War, I was a volunteer working for a nonprofit organization called International Voluntary Services in the province town of Tuy Hoa in central Vietnam. I had been in Vietnam for less than a year and had been working, as the only American, in the Dong Tac refugee camp. It was a god-forsaken place, home to some 20,000 refugees, mostly the elderly, women and children. Their homes had been destroyed in the fighting; their men were warriors for one side or the other. These refugees had been “resettled” on the sandy beaches along the coast and were living in unimaginable poverty in tin huts, with almost nothing to eat and no means of earning money for food. The war was creative a living hell for the peasants farmers of Vietnam.

Senator Kennedy went in peace

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"It was a total surprise to me to see another world he was involved in -- the spiritual world," said Rev. Patrick Tarrant of Our Lady of Victory Church.

Tarrant, who was called to Kennedy's bedside late Tuesday as the senator was dying, said it was clear that Kennedy was ready for the journey that awaited him. He described the senator as "a man of quiet prayer" in his last hours.

"I think the whole world knows certain parts very well, but I think there's another part of his life that very few people know, and that's his deep faith. His very deep faith in God and his love for his family," Tarrant said.

Driven to extremes

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I woke up a six o’clock this morning, because today is the first day of school for my 15-year old daughter. She will be sixteen next month and by then should be able to drive legally in the state of California – but she won’t. I’ll get to that in a second.

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November 21-December 5, 2014

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