"W drodze" on conscience

The November issue of the Polish Dominican magazine


How to cope with your conscience

The worst thing that can happen when we have conflicts of conscience is to accept that ‘there is nothing I can do so I have to sin’, writes Roman Bielecki OP, Editor-in-Chief of the Polish ‘W drodze’ magazine.

At present, there are many such conflicts happening in the field of medicine. Szczepan Cofta, a hospital doctor describes his own. For instance, it is difficult to make a decision about introducing invasive tests for a patient suffering from advanced cancer that cannot be cured.

There are also two articles on the proposed conscience clause for Polish pharmacists and how it would apply in the case of those who do not want to sell contraceptives (especially those with an abortifacient agent). Konrad Sawicki notices a lot of legal and practical details that should be resolved before the introduction of a conscience clause is even considered. For example: What if not only pharmacists but also drivers transporting abortifacient products want a conscience clause? But Fr. Piotr Kieniewicz MIC fully supports the pharmacists’ right to act in accordance with their conscience. For him, any law that limits this fundamental right can be the path to a totalitarian system.

The February issue also features significant emphasis on the liturgy. Anna Sosnowska interviews Fr. Krzysztof Stȩpowski, who regularly celebrates Tridentine masses in Warsaw. He tells about its beauty and the depth of its symbolism: It is usually said that during a Tridentine mass, a priest is standing back to the people. But one should rather say, he is facing the cross and the Tabernacle with all people. But older Polish Dominicans Jan Andrzej Kłoczowski OP and Józef Puciłowski OP are sceptical. Fr. Kłoczowski said that simply going back to ‘old’ rites does not guarantee that the liturgy will be really ‘reformed’ simply by doing so.

If a Catholic is not commited to liturgy with his whole self, he will not be really commited to important aspects of his life as a Christian, writes Tomasz Grabowski OP, director of the Dominican Centre of Liturgy.

The liturgy column is closed by an article entitled ‘The Homeland of Beauty’ on Benedict XVI’s theology of  liturgy, written by Fr. Jerzy Szymik.

Other interesting texts include an interview with Paweł Krupa OP, who talks about the Holy Trinity with simplicity and passion. There is also a report on very interesting archeological discoveries made in the 800-year old Dominican convent in Cracow. It looks like it was the Dominicans who started brick manufacturing in Cracow in the 13th century.