It gives protection to for-profit Catholic businesses. The non-profit issue remains open, and it's difficult to discern what this opinion means for Catholic religious orders, hospitals, etc. Unfortunately, it is probably going to come down to what Justice Kennedy thinks. His concurrence is weird on a couple of levels. Or maybe not and I am just reading it wrong.
Monday, June 30, 2014
Sunday, June 29, 2014
Friday, June 27, 2014
Which has loved men so much, that It has spared nothing, even to exhausting and consuming Itself, in order to testify to them Its love; and in return I receive from the greater number nothing but ingratitude by reason of their irreverence and sacrileges, and by the coldness and contempt which they show Me in this Sacrament of Love. But what I feel most keenly is that it is hearts which are consecrated to Me, that treat Me thus...
The Grand Orient Lodge of Italy has decided to go on record with its own take regarding Vatican II. Rorate has the story.
We didn't comment on it at the time because we had sincerely hoped that there would be some comment or statement from the Vatican on the issue, even if it was something weak just re-affirming that Catholics can't be Masons and that it's inappropriate for Freemasons to take it upon themselves to interpret the events or the mind of the Church.
No statement was forthcoming. We bring it up now because we've had at least one email, and there was a need to reiterate unless anyone else was wondering.
No, Catholics can't be Masons. Pope Leo XIII gave the most comprehensive treatment of the subject in Humanum Genus. Cardinal Ratzinger re-affirmed this in 1983.
Stay away from the Lodge. Period.
Take the time to perform some small (or large) act of reparation today out of love for our Blessed Lord. Do not listen to those who would say that this devotion is outmoded or simple-minded. Listen instead to the words of the Vicar of Christ.
The Church, the teacher of men, has therefore always been convinced from the time she first published official documents concerning the devotion to the Sacred Heart of Jesus that its essential elements, namely, acts of love and reparation by which God's infinite love for the human race is honored, are in no sense tinged with so-called "materialism" or tainted with the poison of superstition. Rather, this devotion is a form of piety that fully corresponds to the true spiritual worship which the Savior Himself foretold when speaking to the woman of Samaria: "The hour cometh, and now is, when the true adorers shall adore the Father in spirit and in truth. For the Father also seeketh such to adore Him. God is a spirit; and they that adore Him must adore Him in spirit and in truth."
Venerable Pius XII, Haurietis Aquas
May the Sacred Heart of Jesus be adored, glorified, loved, and preserved throughout the world, now and forever.
Thursday, June 26, 2014
Weird. I got this emailed to me, but I haven't heard it from any of the major outlets that were trumpeting the initial horror story. Basically, the story about all the babies being starved to death and dumped into a septic tank for burial was a huge load of crap. The AP has now issued a correction.
Isn't that nice of them?
Too bad few, if any, of the slanderers who followed suit seem to be bothering to do so.
You can read about the correction here. A few highlights:
Revelations this month that nuns had buried nearly 800 infants and young children in unmarked graves at an Irish orphanage during the last century caused stark headlines and stirred strong emotions and calls for investigation. Since then, however, a more sober picture has emerged that exposes how many of those headlines were wrong...
The religious orders' use of unmarked graves reflected the crippling poverty of the time, the infancy of most of the victims, and the lack of plots in cemeteries corresponding to the children's fractured families...
Her list of the dead shows that nearly 80 percent were younger than 1; two died within 10 minutes of birth and never received first names. Ninety-one died in the 1920s, 247 in the 1930s, 388 in the 1940s, 70 in the 1950s, and one more child in 1960. The most common causes were flu, measles, pneumonia, tuberculosis and whooping cough. Contrary to the allegations of widespread starvation highlighted in some reports, only 18 children were recorded as suffering from severe malnutrition...
When Corless published her findings on a Facebook campaign page, and Irish media noticed, she speculated to reporters that the resting place of most, if not all, could be inside a disused septic tank on the site. By the time Irish and British tabloids went to print in early June, that speculation had become a certainty, the word "disused" had disappeared, and U.S. newspapers picked up the report, inserting more errors, including one that claimed the researcher had found all 796 remains in a septic tank.
The Associated Press was among the media organizations that covered Corless and her findings, repeating incorrect Irish news reports that suggested the babies who died had never been baptized and that Catholic Church teaching guided priests not to baptize the babies of unwed mothers or give to them Christian burials.
The reports of denial of baptism later were contradicted by the Tuam Archdiocese, which found a registry showing that the home had baptized more than 2,000 babies. The AP issued a corrective story on Friday after discovering its errors...
But the newspaper spotted discrepancies in Corless' maps, and found records showing that the actual septic tank remained in use until the late 1930s, which meant it could not have been used as a burial spot. Other analysts pointed out that the decommissioned septic tank would be too small to hold many bodies. And the two men who had reported seeing skeletons in 1975 said, on reflection, that they doubted more than 20 were inside the concreted hole.
Remember this story, everyone. In twenty years, you'll be talking about the Faith with someone or refuting some other Black Legend-ish garbage, and someone will bring up all the babies that were murdered and dumped in the septic tank. Such is the nature of the world and its relationship to the Church.
Wednesday, June 25, 2014
It was pretty much universally agreed that the most recent conclave was about reform of the Curia and other administrative organs of the Church. To date, we've seen nothing of substance in this direction, just a few moves that actually seem at odds with reform. For example.
We've made prior comparisons between the ongoing situations with the Legionaries of Christ and the Franciscans Friars of the Immaculate. The situations continue to get weirder and more divergent.
For the FFI, they get a meeting with the Pope wherein the censures against them are basically confirmed but with still no explanations as to why. Recall that things were so bad that the FFI founder (Fr. Manelli) wasn't allowed to go pray at his parents' grave. With the LOC, we get yet another person appointed to help and oversee their "reforms."
Which party is the bigger problem? Which party is the more immediate concern?
Items like this really call into question who is advising the Pope on such matters.
Tuesday, June 24, 2014
I don't get the World Cup, so don't take this as some kind of anti-soccer prejudice. I've made the point elsewhere regarding other sports. But here's the thing.
Imagine if the population of the world was even half as concerned with the fate of our souls and our relationship with God Almighty as said population is with a bunch of guys kicking a ball around a field.
What a sad world we have when the latter is our priority and the former is largely considered inconsequential.
Catholic bishops from Iraq are meeting this week to come up with a “rescue plan” amid growing fears that the ISIS Islamist attacks have put Christianity at increased risk of being extinguished from the country.
The meeting of the Chaldean hierarchy, which starts Tuesday, comes after the military success of the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIS) prompted yet another wave of displacement within a country that has already seen a dramatic decline in the Christian population over the past decade...
[Auxiliary Bishop Saad Sirop of Baghdad] stressed that the decline of Christian presence is not just restricted to Baghdad. His comments come as recent reports cast increasing doubt on some figures given for the Christian population in Iraq, which some claim to be as high as 300,000 – down from 1.4 million at the time of the last census in 1987.
How odd that, in all the comments I've heard from John Kerry and others about the need to reform and stabilize the Iraqi government, I have yet to see a single word about the ongoing genocide and extermination of Christianity in the nation. Sort of like when Christians were getting massacred in Syria. And Egypt. And so on.
When we finally reach the endgame in all this, I wonder if we will have a recognized historical tragedy like we see with the Holocaust. Sure, it will have been slow motion for a while, with a period of acceleration towards the end, unlike the frenzy of murder the Nazis accomplished. I'm not sure how that makes it any less tragic, but I doubt we'll see much sympathy.
As I've said before, the secular world is enjoying this. They think our poor brethren deserve what they are getting. When the Islamists come for them, the outcry will be most interesting.
Sunday, June 22, 2014
Saturday, June 21, 2014
Not really, but it makes a good headline. Here's what the Pope said, per Rocco Palma:
Closing out the daylong trek with a Mass – in a rarity for pontifical liturgies, a Sunday vigil – along the shore of the Ionian Sea, the Pope tackled the area's tormented legacy of organized crime, declaring that 'ndrangheta, the locally-based syndicate widely thought to be Italy's most feared Mafia branch, "is this: the adoration of evil and contempt of the common good."
Going further, and lifting his head from his prepared text, Papa Bergoglio said that "those who in their lives have taken this evil road, this road of evil, such as the mafiosi, they are not in communion with God – they are excommunicated!"
As Rocco himself points out, though:
Back to today, while canonists will take pains to emphasize that the "excommunicated" statement is by no means a formal decree with legal effect, in terms of the symbolics and public perception, its potency would be difficult to overestimate.
This is significant and must be emphasized. Not because mafiosi aren't bad people or somehow undeserving of whatever penalty the Church might dole out, but because people are always asking the question of why prelates complicit in the abuse scandal were not excommed. Again, not to say the Pope couldn't/shouldn't do that or make permanent provisions in canon law for doing so. But because he hasn't and people will want to know why.
The fact is that this statement doesn't add up to such a thing for mobsters either and we should remember that.
But hey, while we're excomming the Mafia, how about going after the Lavender Mafia next? They're way worse than the Cosa Nostra folks just by their desecration of their priestly and episcopal office.
To all those who propose that homosexuals have a "right" to be married. If you are going to propose such a thing, at least be able to provide a coherent explanation of what rights are and where they come from.
What is a right? A legal fiction? A natural faculty?
The definition will inevitably lead to a discussion of the origin.
If rights come "from the people," then no such right exists currently because "the people" have by and large, albeit not unanimously, seen fit to deny such a right to homosexuals. Therefore, there is no right.
Moreover, if rights come "from the people," what are the limits on how far these rights go? And please spare the amorphous comeback of "as long as they don't infringe/restrict/harm others" because then you are left defining each of those terms, which means coming back to defining what a right is and where it comes from.
Let's skip straight to Godwin's Law and just ask that, if the people agree that there is a right to gas Jews, what is to stop them? Judges who happen to agree that this would be a bad thing?
If rights don't come from the people, do they come from lawmakers in general? That simply changes the definition of "people" to a more restrictive one that previously mentioned.
I bring this up because so many proponents of homosexual marriage seem essentially to rely on ad hominem yelling in addressing these topics without actually trying to come up with reasons or explanations. Perhaps that is intentional. Really, though, I think it is a perfect example of how reason has largely been abandoned in modern culture, especially by those who claim they are the most enlightened and reasonable of us all.
Thursday, June 19, 2014
If you aren't familiar with that name, you probably aren't a proponent of the Garabandal apparitions. Basically, Joey was blind. Per the seers of Garanbandal, he would receive his sight back in miraculous fashion before he died, and, if I remember correctly, this would be connected with The Warning and The Miracle. That doesn't seem to have happened, which means that all the doubts about these alleged appearances by the Blessed Mother seem to have been well-placed.
Wednesday, June 18, 2014
As can be seen from the item to the right, we are now on Twitter. I figure the NSA already knows what I'm doing anyway, so why bother limiting the outreach at this point. Besides, given my ramblings' main function as a venting mechanism, I will at least try to limit myself to 140 characters now.
Monday, June 16, 2014
It could happen in Poland. Of all places. Poland.
Dr. Bogdan Chazan, a Warsaw-based obstetrician, has denied a request to abort an unborn child who had been diagnosed with serious brain defects.
On Tuesday, Poland’s Prime Minister Donald Tusk said in a statement: "Regardless of what his conscience is telling him [the doctor] must carry out the law.”
“"Every patient must be sure that … the doctor will perform all procedures in accordance with the law and in accordance with his duties," Tusk said.
The mother of the child had filed a complaint against the doctor, claiming that she was being forced to bear a deformed child.
Dr. Chazan is one of 3,000 physicians who had signed a “Declaration of Faith,” calling for the recognition of physicians’ rights to perform their duties in line with their religious convictions with regard to certain medical practices, such as abortion, contraception, euthanasia.
That's Poland, though. It could never happen in a nation with such a deep and abiding respect for religion and life like the United States, right? It could never happen here.
Sunday, June 15, 2014
Saturday, June 14, 2014
Zenit recently did an interview with Fr. Bernard Ardura, President of the Pontifical Committee for Historical Sciences. Since we are facing the centennial of Pope St. Pius X, of happy memory, there is a day being organized for "study" of his pontificate.
When one reads the interview, though, there is the distinct impression that one of the most (if not THE most) significant part of St. Pius X's reign is somehow embarrassing, namely, his condemnation of modernism. Consider the following comments:
Fr. Ardura: During his pontificate he was a very important reformer, but between his reformative activities, he also had to intervene on doctrine-related issues, as he was facing a difficult movement, called modernism. And his condemnation of modernism obscured the positive parts of his ministry. He was remembered as a Pope of condemnation, but, instead was truly a great reformer, a great innovator. Yes, he condemned modernism, but he, in fact, was very modern, which is obvious through his reforms.
It's almost like Fr. Ardura is apologetic about St. Pius's decision to defend the Catholic faith against blasphemous heretics.
Fr. Ardura: He is a Pope who was not well-known, and was somewhat badly known. And, therefore, we want to give a contribution to make him better known and understood.
ZENIT: Why do you believe he was misunderstood?
Fr. Ardura: He became misunderstood, and almost all of his good, reformative works were not given credit, because of the issue of modernism. Therefore, with his condemnation of modernism, he became to be understood by many as a Pope who didn’t understand anything, but it was not true.
ZENIT: For those who don’t know, what is modernism?
Fr. Ardura: It is an error, a philosophical error, that relativizes a bit of everything, and from a doctrinal point of view, is something delicate. For example, different ideas were promulgated in the particular, cultural context of the time. But today, we don't have to relativize these different views on the doctrine. Pius X, we can say, was working in a particular context.
The Church in which we believe, is inspired by the Holy Spirit in a context that is not by some accidental cause, but contains the substance of teachings inspired by the Holy Spirit, and therefore, we don’t have to relativize these realities, which are fundamental, because otherwise, we would have to put into discussion all we believe.
First off, if you want the Pope's most thorough treatment of modernism, read Pascendi Dominici Gregis. For a list of condemned modernist errors, try Lamentabili Sane.
Anyways, when I read the interview comments above it seems like the message is "See, modernism isn't so bad. It just relativizes a little of everything. That's all. But it's a delicate thing because what was bad then isn't so bad now."
Holy smokes. St. Pius called modernism everything from "poison" to "the synthesis of all heresies." I doubt very much that it was all about context. Indeed, look around, readers. We are drowning in modernism today. I don't throw the word around lightly. Read St. Pius's own writings and the decree of the Holy Office that he approved at the provided links. Modernism is the theological norm for most Catholics these days, and it's more deadly to the soul now than when it was first condemned.
Consider some of the propositions from Lamentabili, recalling that the items listed are to be considered as false and condemned:
6. The "Church learning" and the "Church teaching" collaborate in such a way in defining truths that it only remains for the "Church teaching" to sanction the opinions of the "Church learning."
7. In proscribing errors, the Church cannot demand any internal assent from the faithful by which the judgments she issues are to be embraced.
9. They display excessive simplicity or ignorance who believe that God is really the author of the Sacred Scriptures.
11. Divine inspiration does not extend to all of Sacred Scriptures so that it renders its parts, each and every one, free from every error.
23. Opposition may, and actually does, exist between the facts narrated in Sacred Scripture and the Church's dogmas which rest on them. Thus the critic may reject as false facts the Church holds as most certain.
35. Christ did not always possess the consciousness of His Messianic dignity.
53. The organic constitution of the Church is not immutable. Like human society, Christian society is subject to a perpetual evolution.
58. Truth is no more immutable than man himself, since it evolved with him, in him, and through him.
63. The Church shows that she is incapable of effectively maintaining evangelical ethics since she obstinately clings to immutable doctrines which cannot be reconciled with modern progress.
65. Modern Catholicism can be reconciled with true science only if it is transformed into a non-dogmatic Christianity; that is to say, into a broad and liberal Protestantism.
This, and the remainder of the document, could pretty much be used as the syllabus for my wife's RCIA program. It absolutely was the course outline for my Theology 180 class at an allegedly Catholic university which, by the way, promoted the professor to the position of Dean of First Year Studies.
And yet, this is the part of St. Pius's reign that is to be minimized? His battle against what would grow to be the most destructive theological force in our time, or any other time for that matter?
Thursday, June 12, 2014
Remember that thing that was the dumbest thing that we'd heard come out of the Curia in a long, long time? There's some news on the topic, namely, married clergy for our Eastern Catholic priests.
The North American Orthodox-Catholic Theological Consultation voted in early June to encourage the “lifting of the restrictions regarding the ordination of married men to the priesthood in the Eastern Catholic Churches of North America.”
“This action would affirm the ancient and legitimate Eastern Christian tradition, and would assure the Orthodox that, in the event of the restoration of full communion between the two Churches, the traditions of the Orthodox Church would not be questioned,” the consultation said in a statement released Friday.
“We are convinced that this action would enhance the spiritual lives of Eastern Catholics and would encourage the restoration of unity between Catholic and Orthodox Christians,” the statement said.
So we got that going for us. Why this has taken such a long time is shameful. It's silly and more ethan a little disgusting that nobody questions when an Anglican guy converts and receives orders but is allowed to be married, while faithful Eastern Catholics have their tradition called into question.
On a side note, way more Orthodox that I know are worried about pressures to mutilate their liturgy than issues with married men being ordained.
Archbishop: Probably There Is Not One Christian Now Left in Mosul
A graphic account of the Islamist take-over of Mosul and the people’s desperate struggle to flee to safety has come from the city’s Chaldean bishop.
Speaking today to Catholic charity Aid to the Church in Need, Archbishop Amel Nona said he thought Mosul’s last remaining Christians had left now a city which until 2003 was home to 35,000 faithful.
The Christians are among 500,000 thought to have fled Mosul, which was overthrown Tuesday. That event is now followed by news today of militant attacks on the Iraqi city of Tikrit, 95 miles north of the capital Baghdad.
Describing reports of attacks to four churches and a monastery in Mosul, the archbishop, 46, said: “We received threats… [and] now all the faithful have fled the city. I wonder if they will ever return there.”
Not one Christian left. Let that sink in for a moment and then please spare some prayers for our persecuted brethren.
Wednesday, June 11, 2014
So now we've got a whole new resurgence of Islamic warriors in Mosul. The annihilation of Christianity will no doubt accelerate as the situations in Iraq and Syria continue to break down. Not so much ethnic cleansing, but a form of genocide nonetheless.
When you read this article, keep in mind that it's increasingly difficult to admit any Medicare patient into a hospital for real diseases like, say, the flu.
Medicare can no longer automatically deny coverage requests for sex reassignment surgeries, a federal board ruled Friday in a groundbreaking decision that recognizes the procedures are medically necessary for some people who don't identify with their biological sex.
Ruling in favor of a 74-year-old transgender Army veteran whose request to have Medicare pay for her genital reconstruction was denied two years ago, a U.S. Department of Health and Human Services review board said there was no justification for a three-decade-old agency rule excluding such surgeries from treatments covered by the national health program for the elderly and disabled.
In other words, if someone (typically) older than 65 years old wants to have a sex change operation, our tax dollars will first be funneled to pay for a review of whether or not such a procedure is medically necessary. Then, they very well could be used to pay for said procedure.
This is while we as a society routinely deny elderly people hospital admission for a potentially fatal disease, calling such treatment "medically unnecessary." This is the insanity that currently governs our nation.
I am reminded of William Butler Yeats's words:
Turning and turning in the widening gyre
The falcon cannot hear the falconer;
Things fall apart; the centre cannot hold;
Mere anarchy is loosed upon the world,
The blood-dimmed tide is loosed, and everywhere
The ceremony of innocence is drowned;
The best lack all conviction,
while the worst Are full of passionate intensity.
Surely some revelation is at hand;
Surely the Second Coming is at hand.
The Second Coming! Hardly are those words out
When a vast image out of Spiritus Mundi
Troubles my sight: somewhere in sands of the desert
A shape with lion body and the head of a man,
A gaze blank and pitiless as the sun,
Is moving its slow thighs, while all about it
Reel shadows of the indignant desert birds.
The darkness drops again; but now I know
That twenty centuries of stony sleep
Were vexed to nightmare by a rocking cradle,
And what rough beast, its hour come round at last,
Slouches towards Bethlehem to be born?
Tuesday, June 10, 2014
Cardinal Brandmueller is coming out with a new book on Church history. In this interview with Zenit, he had several interesting comments that deserve circulation:
ZENIT: Of what use today is this trip, through the centuries of the Church’s history?
Cardinal Brandmuller: I think that, in our times, this book might have little success. The interest of the majority today, also in directive environments of the Church, is orientated to the present, or better, to the future. “Yes – it is said – we must study ecclesiastical history,” but there aren’t many who consider the urgency of this discipline. Instead, there are so many who hold that it is “a dealer in antiquity,” that keeps curiosity, recounts edifying episodes, sometimes also scandalous and amusing ones but, all together, of little use to resolve the problems of today. Isn’t it true that many say this? This thought is symptomatic of those widely spread philosophical heresies, such as utilitarianism and pragmatism, which are truly destructive intellectual currents, especially when they invade theological thought and the pastoral approach.
We live in a bizarre world where people will attempt to paint history as God, while all the time loathing the events, contexts, and tradition of history.
ZENIT: Taking a step back and concentrating on the last 50 years since Vatican Council II, how can this crucial half century be described for the life of the Church?
Cardinal Brandmuller: (Laughs) There are so many things to say … In the book there is a study of mine which focuses in particular on the post-conciliar conflicts of interpretation. Decades, certainly many [years] – too many – moved by problems that to a great extent still await a resolution.
ZENIT: Is it also the fault of the “Council of the Media,” of which Benedict XVI spoke?
Cardinal Brandmuller: Yes, also, but it isn’t a distinctive trait of the Vatican. During Vatican Council I the newspapers of the time also reported inexact news and played an important role.
While there is a similarity, I think the access of media and the phenomenon of higher speed transmission of disinformation makes Vatican II's events a whole new ball of wax. There can be no doubt that the press was a far greater factor in the 60s than in the 19th century. Moreover, I don't think it can be argued that the media continues to be heavily invested in keeping alive its version of Vatican II. When was the last time you heard a story on Vatican I?
ZENIT: What, then, is the cause of these distortions of the conciliar teachings?
Cardinal Brandmuller: They are due, perhaps, to a false concept of what the Church is. If the Church defines herself as the mystical Christ present in history, a human-divine reality, a Council is certainly interpreted differently. An Ecumenical Council, such as Vatican II, is the implementation of the supreme Magisterium of the Church, whose documents are of decisive value for the Church. Many, instead, have always considered it, recounted it and interpreted it only as an historical, human, sociological, political reality and so on.
Which Pope Francis has denounced with little publicity.
ZENIT: Are fifty years, therefore, not yet enough to understand and implement the conciliar teachings?
Cardinal Brandmuller: No. Vatican Council II is still far from being realized in the life of the Church. It is still necessary to study the documents in a more profound way and then implement them.
This is so obvious that it shouldn't even need to be said. It is staggering that anyone can read the documents of Vatican II and their stated goals, along with the goals of the conciliar and post-conciliar popes, and actually believe that it has been "implemented." Or that if it has been "implemented" that it could be regarded as a success.
What is wrong with simply admitting that the Council was a failure? There's plenty of precedent for failed councils. Lateran V? Failure. Lyons II? Failure. Florence? Mostly a failure.
Vatican II? Failure? Why not?
Monday, June 9, 2014
For those of you who email me every now and then wondering why we haven't talked about some "major" story about Catholicism, odds are that the story is of a sort that we feel pretty confident that the media presentation is utter crap and that the facts need to be allowed to come out.
Such is the case with the recent story about Irish nuns stealing/murdering/neglecting unto death 800 babies and dumping the bodies into a septic tank. I've been emailed multiple versions of this story. At this point, I'm waiting for a BatBoy connection to show up.
Anyways, it looks like the popular account is, in fact, crap. Tancred is on the case.
What has upset, confused and dismayed her in recent days is the speculative nature of much of the reporting around the story, particularly about what happened to the children after they died. “I never used that word ‘dumped’,” she says again, with distress. “I just wanted those children to be remembered and for their names to go up on a plaque. That was why I did this project, and now it has taken [on] a life of its own.” - Catherine Corless
Edit: the news is awash with the completely mendacious story of a Magdalen home in Tuam Ireland where fallen women and their illegitimate children were housed, and given a chance on life, as opposed to being preyed upon by pimps. The story claims that 800 children were "dumped" in a "mass grave" in a "septic tank". The story was an emotional one and conjured up the usual misogynistic images of cruel faces of doughty sadistic nuns in medieval cowls overseeing a mass murder.
The story was based on the work of an independent researcher, Catherine Corless who is horrified that her story has taken on such macabre dimensions and is being used to unfairly malign the Church, which is covered by the Catechesis of Caroline Blog. We came by this at the comments at Father Ray's blog.
In fact, we find out that the image of the mass grave was false. The septic tank contained not 800 but 20 infants.
When considering this story about the number of poor babies dying from malnutrition and "neglect". We don't know the budget the nuns had to work with, but we are sure it wasn't unlimited. It's also important to remember that during the time period covered from 1925-1961, that the world was undergoing an agricultural revolution where crop yields quintupled and food prices dropped. Not surprisingly, many of the deaths from malnutrition occurred in 1944 when a world conflagration and German U-Boots made commerce risky and rationing was strictly enforced. People were hungry during the war!
I'm sure a comparable body count story could probably be generated from Mother Teresa's work in India.
When you see people relish stories like this and flaunt such horrific accounts for the purpose of justifying their position contra the Church or their hubris in not believing in God, have pity on them. Pray for them. Such miserable people deserve all the spiritual charity we can afford them. Remember the words of The Master:
If the world hate you, know ye, that it hath hated me before you. If you had been of the world, the world would love its own: but because you are not of the world, but I have chosen you out of the world, therefore the world hateth you. Remember my word that I said to you: The servant is not greater than his master. If they have persecuted me, they will also persecute you: if they have kept my word, they will keep yours also.
John 15: 18-20
PS- While we're at it, Debunking Philomena.
Sunday, June 8, 2014
Saturday, June 7, 2014
Our brethren in Syria are still dying, and the world still seems ok with it.
Per Zenit, though, some are holding on to give the Faith a presence there:
Although the Pope’s visit and words were fruitful, the bishop (Bishop Antoine Audo of Aleppo) stressed that Christians, men of good will, and the international community must do their part.
"We Christians must do everything we can in order to survive and stay alive asked to give testimony," he said.
"We must not leave," he stressed, because "this Christianity of Arab culture that has lived for centuries among Muslims is an inculturation truly unique in the history of the Church and you must do everything to preserve it."
As we've stated before, though, this will all be over in a few years, and the world will be able to celebrate peace in our time for the Middle East. And isn't a little genocide worth that?
Albeit, a rhetorical one.
Here is the text of the First Amendment:
Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.
Note the first five words specifically.
Here is the most recent story regarding outrage over an alleged violation of the First Amendment. This particular example is a high school principal mentioning God in some comments at a graduation in Missouri.
“So while it would not be politically correct for us to have an official prayer this evening, I would like for us to have a moment of silence in honor of tonight’s graduates,” Lowery told students. “Thank you. And just in case you’re interested, during my moment of silence, I gave thanks to God for these great students, their parents, their teachers and for this community.”
"If you were "offended" by this..I'd have to ask you HOW you could be offended by someone praying for nothing but wonderful things for this student!" wrote one commenter. "He wasn't asking anyone to join a church, a religion or to leave one...he simply asked that they would be protected and blessed."
Here is one such offended reaction:
But dozens of others commenting on the video blasted Lowery, as did Dave Muscato, a spokesman for American Atheists. “I find this extremely objectionable,” Muscato said. “I think it’s clear that Kevin Lowery violated the spirit of the First Amendment separations of religion and government. This was an underhanded and dishonorable way for him to forcibly inject his personal religious views onto his students and the others present and into his role as a government official.”
Returning to what the actual amendment says, can anyone find anywhere in this process where CONGRESS MADE A LAW? For those who don't recall, this is how Congress makes a law:
Not sure about you, but I didn't see anything in the graduation ceremony that included the passage of bicameral legislation, much less signature by the president.
This is illustrative for anyone who wonders how stuff at the judiciary really works. It's political just like everything else. You can web search your way into seeing how the First Amendment has evolved over the years, but the one thing that is consistent is that those first critical five words are utterly ignored.
So if Mr. Moscato wants to talk about violating the spirit of the amendment, maybe he should take a step back and reflect on how his (and the Supreme Court's) entire perspective relies on violating the actual text.
And for those wondering, I'm a recovering attorney, and yes, I did handle a couple of establishment and free exercise cases.