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Friday, 25 May 2012

Pray for Egypt

I have personal good news, but this is universal not so good news.

REALITY CHECK?????? Obama and Catholics in Chicago????

 A seminarian friend sent this to me today. 

Cynicism check time.

Amid polls showing that his efforts to regulate religious institutions have hurt his image among Catholics, President Barack Obama has begun touting his early ties to the church.
“My first job as a community organizer was with Catholic churches who taught me the power of kindness and commitment to others in neighborhoods,” he declared at a Hollywood fundraiser May 23.
“When I was a young community organizer, I was working with Catholic churches and they taught me that no government program can make as much of a difference as kindness and commitment on the part of neighbors and friends,” he said at a Colorado fundraiser earlier that day.
This new emphasis on his ties to the Catholic Church is a change from Obama’s previous speeches and fundraisers, where he did not mention that, early in his career, he was funded and supported by liberal Catholic officials in Chicago.
His Chicago supporters included a radical Catholic priest, Father Michael Pfleger, who has since been admonished by senior church officials for political advocacy.
Obama’s emphasis on his Catholic ties come as polls show a sharp drop in his support among swing-voting Catholics in battleground states after his February imposition of regulations on churches.
An April poll from Pew reported that Obama’s approval among non-Hispanic Catholics dropped from 45 percent in March to 37 percent in April, while support for Romney rose from 51 percent to 57 percent. That shift could swing the decision in critical swing-states, including Ohio and Pennsylvania.

Read more:

On Monarchs and the Faith

This article from LifeSiteNews caught my eye after a discussion with two priests on to desire monarchies or to want republics-democracies. I shall copy the entire article here and then make a comment.

Abortion debate jeopardizes 900-year-old Liechtenstein dynasty

Peter BaklinskiWed May 23 16:22 ESTAbortion
St. Louis IX
LIECHTENSTEIN, May 23, 2012 ( – Hereditary Prince Alois of Liechtenstein has threatened to step down from his royal duties if a citizen-led initiative to limit his vetoing power proves successful. The citizens’ initiative gained momentum last year when the 43 year-old prince threatened to veto the results of a referendum should the majority opt to legalize abortion in the first 12 weeks of pregnancy and in cases of fetal deformity.
Speaking to parliament in March, the prince, a devout Catholic and father of four, made it clear that for the Royal Family to continue its vision for the country, it must retain the royal power to veto legislation contrary to that vision.
“The royal family is not willing to undertake its political responsibilities unless the prince… has the necessary tools at his disposal,” said Prince Alois as reported by Agence France-Presse. “But if the people are no longer open to that, then the royal family will not want to undertake its political responsibilities and ... will completely withdraw from political life.”
Liechtenstein, with a population of 36,000 and a land area of 160 square kilometers, has a constitution that empowers the hereditary prince with the royal right of veto. The royal family and their princes have ruled the tiny country as an autonomous monarchy since the Holy Roman Empire was dissolved in 1806.
Abortion in Liechtenstein is illegal under current law. According to the Penal Code of 1987, whoever performs an abortion can be punished with up to one year in prison. If an abortion is performed for profit, the sentence is elevated to three years in prison. Abortions are permitted, however, when deemed necessary to prevent serious danger to the life of the pregnant woman or serious harm to her health, when the pregnant woman is under the age of fourteen and has not at any time been married to the man who impregnated her, or when performed to save the pregnant woman from immediate danger to her life that cannot otherwise be prevented.
Now, there are many Catholics who desire monarchies. The subject of a monarchy is more real in discussions here in Great Britain, where there actually is one. The monarch here is a symbol of national unity outside of party politics.
Children of Blessed Karl and Empress Zita
However, she is not a Catholic monarch, and one may argue as to the interpretation of her Christianity, of course, and when monarchies are discussed as an ideal, I try to imagine a real Catholic monarch, such as SS. Louis and Edward, Henry, Vladimir, Edmund, or even Blessed Emperor Karl. And, there are many more kings and queens who are canonized saints. However, we as a global nation have moved away from the training, the formation of Catholic monarchs, except perhaps in Liechtenstein. Would that all monarchs were so Catholic, so determined. Of course, we have the example of Blessed Karl, who offered up his life for his country so that it would not become socialist or communist. This is the heroism of the regal soul.
Blessed Karl, Zita and some of the children
St, Edmund King
In a world of secular leadership, where royal families have become watered down versions of their ancestors with regard to the Faith, can we ever hope for a true, Catholic, traditionalist monarch? I doubt it. What is good in theory may be the lost ideal of the loss of noblesse oblige in Europe. I personally know some people in a European country who are of royal blood. I am good friends of a person whose uncles and grandfathers include dukes and counts. These men and the duchess, who is about my age, are good Catholics. They decry the secularization of the modern world, but because of constitutional changes in their government, they will never have power or influence again. They have even lost influence in the Catholic world. They are, in their own country, in exile.
St. Henry King
Training no longer is passed down, even though attitudes may be in families that such leadership skills are necessary in the world. The qualities of leadership need to be inculcated in royal families. Training, as with the ancient order of knights, is both in the blood and in the discipline of raising children to rule. Much of this has been lost through a century of socialism and communism, bent on ruining the Catholic lines of succession. Also, the selfish pursuits of some monarchs, even emperors, have led to the weakening of their own faith and that of their families. One only look at the state of such families before World War One. That some of the families were persecuted to death, or experienced exile has created at least two saints. However, the impetus for leadership seems to have faded away.
The same is true of so many good families. Communism or socialism  took away their power and now, as the generations stream away from the long traditions of leadership training, their families have lost the strength of centuries of ruling. The realpolitik now is nationalism, or worse, global government. Those who want to change the increasing separation of Church and State, or the re-emergence of a strong, atheist communism, must stop dreaming for the past days of old and look at what is necessary now. I would hope, like the good prince above, that there are some who will grasp the nettle, and become unpopular because they believe in God, the Church and Country.

Perhaps the Traditional movement in the Church can create a new line of royals, one based on the True Faith. Only within the Church is this possible. And, I wonder, can the Novus Ordo produce royal saints? Just wondering.....To be continued.....            

Are you part of the New or Old Evangelization?

A few days ago, I put two maps on this blog of places where Christians and Catholics live. Here is another map of the weather this weekend. Any connection? If we are hot about the Faith, if we love God and that love of God spills over into our daily lives, we are part of the New Evangelization, which is really the old one. Like spreading the fire of love of the INDWELLING OF THE HOLY SPIRIT, which we have from baptism and confirmation, the heat wave spreads and spreads.

I consider the rosary as part of the Old Evangelization. If we all were faithful to saying our rosaries daily for those who need to convert, what a different world this would be. 

Yesterday, in my long travels, I  lost my beautiful rosary in one of the several train stations through which I passed yesterday. You'all pray I can get another one. The one I have left is a glow-in-the-dark rosary I have had for a very long time. The other one was a high class rosary. It had red beads and was very beautiful. I pray that the person who finds it uses it with love. I would think that finding a rosary in Euston, or Birmingham New Street, or the other three country stations I have been in, would be impossible. Say the rosary for our young female Islamic girls whom we meet. Some of the most polite and sweetest young ladies I have met here in England are young Muslim girls. God bless them and protect them. There is the New Evangelization and the Old Evangelization.

I think, and some of you may disagree with me, that manners, politeness, not becoming angry at difficult people (especially on crowded trains), spreading joy and love instead of negativity, praising when it is due, especially to young people who have done something in the Faith, and the small everyday peace we can choose to exude, are all part of the Old Evangelization. I firmly believe that manners, for example, a lost art, were created not merely for social interaction but out of the concept of the common dignity of human beings. To be a Christian, is to be gentle and peaceful. This state of being, of course, demands daily conversion and purification within our souls.

I do both the New and the Old Evangelization. The New Evangelization could be praying outside of abortion clinics, real, true catechesis, and being open about one's Faith in the market place, setting up Catholic schools which really are Catholic, home schooling.

We are all, by our baptismal graces, called to evangelize. This call is not an option, but not all of us are warriors. Some are Joan of Arcs, some Little Flowers, some Zitas in the kitchen.

We must all accept our place in the Kingdom of God.

Hope some of you can stay cool in body this weekend, but hot in the Faith. The British do not believe in air conditioning.....and it is hot here as well. Amazing!