Checking into Hong Kong on Palm Sunday

Well, my friends, my Rome/Istanbul odyssey has begun. I am at an internet cafe in the Hong Kong airport at the moment. Cathy and I have been “on the road” since 4am Palm Sunday morning AEST. It is now 5pm Hong Kong time, and we have another seven hours before our plane leaves for Rome. I have just done a bit of a “captain cook” of the airport, and found this free connection, so I thought I would “check in”. It is quite warm and muggy here – and I am dressed for Roman Spring…

I managed to get to Mass last night while we were still packing. It was an odd thought that I was starting Holy Week in my local parish, but would be ending it at St Peter’s Basilica in Rome with the Holy Father!

The kids (and guinea pigs) are with their grandparents for the first week of the school holidays (and a good friend is house sitting to help our neighbour look after the cat). It is Maddy and Mia’s first Easter without Mum and Dad. They gave us two nice home made “We will miss you/Happy Easter” cards which we have with us at the moment.

Not a lot else to add at the moment, except that Cathy and I are preparing a special edition of “Cathy and David At the Movies” for the St Paul’s magazine: it will be a collage of “in flight” movies. So far we have seen Slumdog Millionaire and Yes Man, as well as the latest Wallace and Grommit (“A matter of loaf and death”). Stay tuned for that.

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18 Comments

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18 responses to “Checking into Hong Kong on Palm Sunday

  1. Arabella

    Thank’s David for the update.
    Easter in Rome! I’m envious.

  2. Mr. Schütz,

    any chance that, while you’re in Rome, you could drop by the C.D.F.’s headquarters and see what’s on the agenda for the Vatican-S.S.P.X. doctrinal discussions??? (Yes, I’m being a little bit facetious, but you’ve got connections, I’m sure?)

    • I ran into a bloke who works at the Congregation for Eastern Rites who reckoned he knew a little about this, but I’m not sure whether his info was as good as he claimed it was…

  3. vicci

    Oh, David we all hope you and Cathy have a safe trip.

    The terrible news about the earthquake, and the loss of life is quite disturbing.
    With Easter coming, there will be big crowds. We hope no quake hits Rome,
    or anywhere else either.
    But this is a warning, too.
    Just as the bushfires have been seen as a Judgement on the Victorian people
    by some of your eminent posters, it must be more than co-incidence that this event has
    happened now. It’s clear that the focus is on Italy -golly, even Schutz is pilgrimaging!
    So we remember that the Pope has recently been in Africa.
    We know of the poverty, disease and human misery there. Not even fresh water
    to drink. The basics of existence.
    Yet most would know of the obscene wealth LOCKED AWAY behind Vatican Doors.
    One, just ONE art treasure sold, and the money given to the poor could SAVE so many.
    David, you will see this with your own eyes. It will make you upset and troubled.
    If you get a chance at your Audience, stand up and say something.
    It’s so IMPORTANT!
    Lest there be further judgement on the Church.

    best wishes on your Journey.

    • matthias

      Vicci,

      add to that the obscene wealth of some of the megachurches so collectively we all stand awaiting judgement

  4. Tony

    Sheesh Vicci, you make atheism look attractive!

    • vicci

      Atheism is not attractive, Tony.
      Not for me, anyway.

      But Wealth and Power has long been attractive
      to many. Any historian knows that.
      Any honest person does too.

      I take it then that you and Matt agree that the Church is doing the right thing by keeping
      all that Riches ‘locked up’?

  5. Tony

    Vicci,

    In a word: no.

    In more than one word: the more possessions you have the harder it is to be … good. I’d like to see the church at least consider, in a ‘corporate’ sense, the story of the rich young man. It doesn’t just apply to individuals. What that means in practical terms, I’m not so sure about.

    My major objection to your post was the notion of a God who punishes indiscriminately for the evil done by others. THAT makes atheism look more attractive to me!

  6. Yet most would know of the obscene wealth LOCKED AWAY behind Vatican Doors.
    One, just ONE art treasure sold, and the money given to the poor could SAVE so many.
    David, you will see this with your own eyes. It will make you upset and troubled.
    If you get a chance at your Audience, stand up and say something.
    It’s so IMPORTANT!
    Lest there be further judgement on the Church.

    What a load of tripe! Think of all the money you spend on CDs, DVDs and what not and *then* carry on about the poor.

    I have heard this “argument” so many times it’s not funny. I’m glad there are so many beautiful things at the Vatican and so many other churches, where people (even poor ones) can go and see them. We should spend money on the worship of God. We have the poor with us always; we can give them food and other necessities any time we like.

    People who own flat-screen TVs and others of the latest gadgets are in no position to throw stones at the Vatican.

  7. matthias

    In a word also Vicci No. They could be sold off and the proceeds used to assist the victims of the earthquake as well as assisting in reducing poverty.But the Vatican is not the only place where there is material wealth displayed.
    Some of the megachurches also have a lot of wealth. For example the senior pastor of a large megachurch lives in a mansion on Sydney harbour and many of these churches display their affluence in a triumphalistic manner-“Look how the Lord has Blessed us”!!
    The Anglican Archbishop’s residence in East melbourne could be either given to the national trust or perhaps be used for assisting with accomodation problems. I heard an atheistic art critic once say ,in all seriousness,that the vatican was assisting in art conservation and preservation by maintaining such a large collection.
    and you are right Louise,when Jesus said “the poor you have with you always” he was giving us a responsiblity.

  8. Enjoy your holiday in Rome David. It is one of my dreams to be in the Holy Land for Easter and then go onto Rome.

  9. Interestingly, St Francis, who was into selling all he had and giving it to the poor, had no arguement with the Church owning treasure. This is what contrasted his approach to evangelical poverty and charity with that of the heritical sects of his day like the Cathars.

    Mind you, you have to make a distinction between wealth and treasure. The Church has stacks of “treasure” in the Vatican, but very little actual “wealth”. The treasure is not “locked away” either – it is on display for all to see – mostly in the Vatican Museums where there are 22 kms of displays that are seen by hundreds of thousands every day. I think the Church is actually doing something of a favour for the world by preserving these treasures.

    On the other hand, Matthias is surely right. What about all the tacky wealth that we hoard – wealth that is not treasure and has no value and yet we spend our money on that stuff rather than the poor.