JUNE 03, 2012, Vol 62, No 11

This is the second article drawn from recent talks on human suffering conducted by Father David Garcia, OP and organised by CHARIS. The first article established that the reason for suffering is not punishment from God, but God’s respect for our freedom to inflict suffering. Today, we look at why God sometimes appears to look the other way when there is suffering.

THE inevitable question is why God seems to allow unspeakable suffering to occur without intervening. The problem of suffering is a well-known ancient argument against the claim that God is both infinitely powerful and infinitely merciful. If God is almighty and allows evil to happen, then He is not benevolent (good). But, if God is good (benevolent), and allows evil to happen, it necessarily means that God is not powerful enough to eliminate suffering. So, God cannot be good and almighty; God is either helpless or merciless.

The apparent cul-de-sac of this conundrum is due to a very common over-simplistic understanding of God as one more entity in the universe as an independent agent apart from nature and man. According to such view, there are natural causes caused by the laws of nature, artificial causes caused by humans and divine interventions when God steps in and pulls the strings of nature according to his designs very much like a puppeteer moves his puppets. But that is not the understanding of God in the Catholic faith.
Obama’s support for same-sex unions slammed.

Left to right: Ms Nirmala Nair, Ms Stephanie Yeap and Ms Catherine Sandra Paul.Left to right: Ms Nirmala Nair, Ms Stephanie Yeap and Ms Catherine Sandra Paul.

Three Catholic nurses who were among the 61 recipients of this year’s Healthcare Humanity Award attribute their faith for their accomplishments.

They are Ms Nirmala Nair, Ms Stephanie Yeap and Ms Catherine Sandra Paul.

The three nurses received the awards from President Tony Tan on May 15.
Artist’s impression of the new schools with central courtyard.Artist’s impression of the new schools with central courtyard.St Anthony’s Canossian Primary and Secondary Schools’ students look forward to brand new school buildings next year

Students at St Anthony’s Canossian Primary and Secondary Schools can look forward to better facilities and more educational resources when they start the school term next year.

Both institutions are presently undergoing PRIME, the Education Ministry’s Programme for Rebuilding and Improving Existing Schools, and are now at different temporary locations.

The schools are expected to move into their new buildings, at their original site in Bedok North Avenue 4, at the end of the year.

Alumni singing their school rally with gusto during the May 12 dinner. Alumni singing their school rally with gusto during the May 12 dinner.

SJI old boy Martin See describes the atmosphere at his alma mater’s 160th anniversary dinner

On May 12, around 2,200 old boys of St Joseph’s Institution, their teachers and De La Salle Brothers gathered at the Malcolm Road campus to celebrate the 160th anniversary of the school’s founding.

This event also commemorated the feast day of St John Baptist de La Salle, founder of the Brothers’ congregation.

I was covering the story for CatholicNews and being an old boy, the celebration meant something special to me.