By WILLIAM KELLY
On April 27, 2014, two popes were made saints. This happening was unusual because the Catholic Church has two living popes, one retired and one the present head of the Church. Two popes, Pope John XXIII and Pope John Paul II, were canonized as saints. Both present popes, Pope Francis and Pope Benedict, participated in the canonization. This was the first time in the 2,000 years of the Church’s history that this happened. No matter your church affiliation, you have observed a very historical event in Christian life. It is estimated that more than 800,000 people observed this event in person.
I mentioned, in my last article, the many things that occurred on April 24. My Irish friends let me know that I missed a very important event that occurred on that date. The Irish insurrection took place on April 24, 1916. My apologies to all the Irish.
We have heard and read much criticism of two judges in particular concerning their sentencing in two cases, one about a rape and one about a DWI accident. The Oxford Dictionary defines a judge as follows: As a noun, a public officer appointed to decide cases in a law court. As a verb, to give a verdict on a case or person in a law court. Of course there are many types of judges of many things, but I believe the above two definitions apply in this discussion. A judge is expected to be very knowledgeable in the law of his particular court. Therefore, after hearing all the facts in a case, the judge has the power to make a final decision of guilt or innocence. The judge also has the power to sentence. We, the people, may disagree with a judge’s decision and express our disapproval of his sentence in a particular case, but do we have all the facts of the case available to us? I think not! We can disapprove on principle. A person who expresses his opinion on a particular case, either for or against the judge’s decision, now becomes a judge his or herself without knowing all the facts of the case. What do you think?