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Thursday, 13 December 2012

Only in London....

From The Tablet

David Cameron's faith and communities minister, Baroness Warsi, has expressed concern at the Coalition's proposed gay marriage legislation, saying it needs greater clarity and could lead to a string of "unintended consequences".
In a letter leaked to the Daily Mail, the former Conservative Party chairman asked Maria Miller, the Culture Secretary who unveiled the planned legislation earlier this week, how the proposed laws would protect religious freedom.
The Muslim peer, who attends Cabinet, also asked what legal advice the Government had received in relation to the compatibility of gay marriage legislation with "domestic and European law".
Lady Warsi, who held talks on the issue this week with Church of England leaders, asked: "What consideration has been given to the teaching of equal marriage in schools, both faith schools and non-faith schools?"
More than 100 Tory MPs are threatening to vote against the legislation in the New Year.

Multiple posting day

In the past few weeks, I have been taking advantage of the fact that I am in an Internet zone and not a dead zone.  Please take time to read all the posts. I do all of this for you.

Here is a cutie as a reminder of a big posting day...

Subjectivity, relativism, Satanism and anarchy

Last year, a baby Jesus was vandalized in Pennsylvania. The statue was made to look like Satan and had satanic symbols on the back of it. The anarchist symbol is clearly visible on the front. What strikes me about this situation is the complete logic of the connections between the hatred of religion, Satanism and anarchy.

I am truly, truly concerned about the Millennials. I am truly, truly concerned that if the youth of the West do not rise up and take the lead in converting others, we shall not only lose our culture and more so, our civilization, but lose the opportunity to catechize the entire world.

The horror of subjective thinking has created an entire generation of relativists who span the earth.

This is one reason why Islam is attractive. Relativism is a philosophical position based on materialistic views of life, history, philosophy. So is Islam.

But, I digress. Relativism and subjectivity has ruined the youths' ability to believe in critical thinking.

Many of these youth no longer believe in reason. They do not believe in free will, the soul, or reason. This is a serious development, planned by the social engineers from the 19th century who do not want a thinking public.

They have now got it. It some countries, this lack of the belief in man's ability to reason is completely gone, except for a few.

So many young people will go to hell because they do not believe in reason and free will.

Are you surprised at this statement?

On my blog and especially in the perfection series, I have said over and over that in order to become a saint, one must become objective. This is essential. If one cannot stand back and see one's own sin and the state of one's own soul, a person lacks the humility and impetus to come to God.

All the saints, as I have said many times, were objective. Subjectivity is the mind of evil-why?

Non servium. The real relativist cannot serve any laws, rules, or hierarchy outside of himself. The logical consequence of subjectivism is anarchy, but sadly, the real relativist cannot reason about consequences.

I am very concerned, not for myself, but for all of those whose subjectivity will lead them to moral anarchy.

One cannot argue with most relativists as they cannot think. They deny reason. They deny rational discourse.

Pray for these youth when you meet them. Their souls, which, with free will and reason, were made in the image and likeness of God.  They refuse that image and likeness. They are culpable in that they choose lifestyles which follow their subjectivity.

God never gives up on any of us. He pursues us until the last moments of our lives. He is Faithful. But, we have free will.

John the Baptist and Perfection

Today's Gospel in the NO is from Matthew 11:11-15.

11Truly, I say to you, among those born of women there has risen no one greater than John the Baptist; yet he who is least in the kingdom of heaven is greater than he.
12From the days of John the Baptist until now the kingdom of heaven has suffered violence, and men of violence take it by force.
13For all the prophets and the law prophesied until John;
14and if you are willing to accept it, he is Eli'jah who is to come.
He who has ears to hear, let him hear.

Those who follow this blog know that this passage is one of my favourites from the Scriptures. Last year, a Jesuit priest told me that he did not believe that John the Baptist was the greatest of men. This priest was contradicting Christ Himself. Christ is telling us who John and and what we are to become.

Why did the Jesuit demean John? Because John was counter-cultural; he called people out of their comfort zones; he prepared the way for perfection.

Repentance must come before perfection.

John knew why he was on earth. To prepare people for the coming of Christ. His words used by the Church in Advent, allow us to see the depth of his love and commitment to Christ.  He is the Best Man to the Bridegroom.


My Meditation on the Crib and the Cross

From the earliest times in Catholicism, we have had artists and poets link the Crib to the Cross.

The entire reason for the Incarnation and the Birth of Our Lord is Christ's Redemptive Passion and Death, resulting in the Resurrection.

Christ in art in the Harrowing of Hell is shown taking up into Heaven our first parents. SS Adam and Eve await us there.  In the painting immediately below, St. Francis places a little Jesus in the manger under the Cross.

In the old days, the feast of Adam and Eve was celebrated on Christmas Eve, December 24th. The old collect was the same as the refrain during Holy Week. These three days may be connected in our minds. We hear this on Holy Saturday night in the Exsultet.

happy fault,
O necessary sin of Adam,
which gained for us so great a Redeemer!

O certe necessárium Adæ peccátum,
quod Christi morte delétum est!
O felix culpa,
quæ talem ac tantum méruit habére Redemptórem!

In these very hard times, let us rejoice in suffering and accept the times as part of our own salvation.

Here is a quotation from LifeSiteNews

Totalitarian tactics by Western governments to advance a worldwide de-population, anti-life and anti-faith agenda are accelerating. This is very alarming to those of us who understand the implications of these developments....
There are still battles to be played out, but we know the final outcome. Our role it NOT to avoid the hard truths and the battles, but to engage with full confidence so that in the end our Maker will be able to say to each one of us, “Well done, good and faithful servant, enter into your reward.” LSN

How to help a relativist think....

One of the greatest problems in evangelising is knowing when to stop the metaphysical and epistemological arguments and go for the jugular.

I use the Socratic Method. I ask the non-believer what they do believe. They want to always tell me what they do not believe, but all non-believers believe in something.

It is rather easy to start a conversation using popular culture.

Example: the Sherlock series is very popular. The acting is above average and although there are some irritating photographic techniques, and the music is horrid, the interpretations of the stories have dramatic value. Some of the story-lines are based on the originals, but deviate quickly, which is fine.

The college bunch like Sherlock. So, my question to a bunch of relativists would be, "Why do you believe that murder is wrong and horrible, and even perhaps betraying your country is wrong?"

"If you do not believe that spying and betrayal are wrong, why do you watch the show?"

"Are Chinese gangs evil, as portrayed? Why do you think violence is wrong or right depending on who is being violent or receiving violence?"

Make the relativist begin to think that maybe there is a natural law.

Secondly, if they back off, it is because they are lazy thinkers. Help them along.

"Why do you like Sherlock?" OK, he is cool, (You can tell he is not an INTJ by the way as he needs to get a reaction.) and smart and always right, mostly. But, ask the relativist why it is important for Sherlock to be correct in his thinking. Another question could be "Why do you think Sherlock is a good guy and Moriarity is a bad guy?" Because one is psychotic...?

As I wrote in an earlier post in the past few days, too many people think that success means goodness. Hmmm.

The writers of Sherlock are a bit confused on the moral issues themselves, but that is another issue.

It is full of relativistic nonsense as one could see in the first series in 2010. Being gay is OK, as is fornication and nudity and sadism...well, almost.

The simple truth is that the relativist young person makes decisions daily on likes and dislikes based on moral principles which most young people do not realize they make.

Relativism is a moral stand.

Individualism is a moral stand.

So, even those who think they do not have opinions and do not want to foist them onto anyone else, do.

So, is it OK if a S/M flirts with the virginal Sherlock and he almost succumbs?  Or, is it OK that he lies to get to get a reaction? And, he needs to impress. Too bad-that is his weakness.

And don't tell me it is not a series of stories about murder mysteries and merely a "thriller". That is the Millennialist cop-out.

Natural law is always there, hidden or not...we just need to help these young ones pull it out of the dark cave of indifference, anti-intellectualism and sloth.

The real reason why people fall away from the Church, and youth raised in Ireland, who are call themselves atheists fall into that category, is usually not for rational reasons. Most likely, the person has decided to live with his girlfriend or be gay, or think that cheating on exams is fine. The intellectual arguments of a real intellectually convinced atheist are rare.

By the way, Sherlock thinks both logically and analogically. His going into his mind-palace is analogical thinking as the logical thinking has failed to solve the problem.  When I taught logic, I discovered that most girls in America thought analogically and most guys, logically. However, (I first taught college in 1979 and stopped in 2010 with a hiatus as a stay-at-home-mom in between there somewhere) that changed over the years. More and more men were thinking analogically. Sad. That is the creativity which depends on memory and associations of an excellent observer. Enough said....

DISCLAIMER: I am writing about secular humanists and not Catholics. The Catholic trad youth are logical and more so, as they are more traditional.

To tweet or not to tweet

On Father Z's blog, there is a poll on whether the Pope should tweet or not. I voted in the minority who said yes with zeal.

Americans may not realize the importance of tweeting to youth in Asia, Europe and the Middle East. That the media uses it consistently is one thing. That young people have as many as 800 contacts is another. I am not exaggerating when I say that tweeting seems to be getting much bigger than chat, way more than e-mail, which is the oldies way of communicating, and more popular than skype. Like facebook, twitter is the social networking mode. Texting is most common.

I have a problem in that most of my friends e-mail or chat or skype. However, tweeting is convenient. I do not use it much, as most of my friends do not use it. Bother.

The only real problems are my friends who only use the telephone. Maybe they have a mobile. That is a huge problem, as phoning from a mobile to a mobile in Europe is way more expensive than using skype or twitter.

Which is the reason why college students twitter or skype-these are cheap or free.

As to the Pope using twitter, you can look at my comment on Fr. Z where I listed the Popes who used radio, television and movies for the first time. But, here is the original link for information. Cool, huh? First Pope on film: Leo XIII in 1896. First pope to make a radio broadcast: Pius XI c. 1931. First pope to have a ‘full-length movie made about him: Pius XII in 1942 . First pope to speak on TV: Pius XII

Wishes and The Christ Child

My ancestry on one side of the family is Moravian and Bohemian Catholic, in the Latin Rite, and I must share a story which my grandmother on the maternal side wrote for a newspaper competition years ago and it is a true story.

Writing has been a "thing" for at least four generations on that side.

When Grandma Ludmilla was a little girl, six, in 1906, she wanted a beautiful porcelain doll dressed like in silk and taffeta with a big hat.  In her family, no decorations were put up before Christmas. There was a large second living room, with the pocket doors leading to a foyer. Those doors were shut for days before Christmas and the children would not be allowed to enter the room.

It was being prepared for the Christ Child. Not Santa, but the Christ Child brought gifts to my Grandmother's generation of Catholics in the southern edge of the Midwest. The children would be excited and nervous.

If they were good, the Christ Child would bring gifts. If not, well...

Little Ludmilla, and Vasha, and Jara, and Vaclav and Mohimir and Bohumil were waiting, and being very good.

Then, on the morning of Christmas, Mama and Papa would open the pocket doors. The fairyland behind the doors had to come from Jesus. The tree was decorated with candles lit with real fire, ornaments from Germany and toys from Austria and Germany. There were bowls of fruits and candies.

But, most wonderful of all was Ludmilla's doll. I do not know what she named it, but I am going to say Marianne, which was a popular name at the time. Marianne was not only big, but beautiful, with real hair and all the trappings of an Edwardian lady.

Ludmilla, thrilled that Christ had brought her a doll had another surprise. There, in the corner, near the sideboard, was a new doll carriage with blankets and cushion. Marianne could go for a Christmas walk.

It was warm and where little Ludmilla lived, there was no snow. But her mother made her wear her coat. And a little coat for Marianne was produced, magically, to match Ludmilla's coat.

Outside, on the sidewalks of the city, Ludmilla pushed the carriage, but within minutes, the test of her young life occurred. There, on the pavement, were the neighbour children playing with old toys and wearing old clothes.

Ludmilla stopped. She knew the little girl. The family had little. Ludmilla stopped pushing Marianne. "What did you get for Christmas, Clara?" She asked, boldly. Clara answered, "Nothing,"and she looked at the doll.

Ludmilla immediately responded, "Here, take Marianne. I have other things." And Clara, quietly, but happily, took Marianne.

Ludmilla returned home in a short while without the carriage or the doll. Her father asked her where her new doll was and her mother looked at her searchingly. "I gave Marianne to Clara, for she has nothing for Christmas and I have so much."

Great-Grandma looked at Great-Grandpa. He took Ludmilla's little hand in his and said. "That was good, but you know, you will not get another doll." Ludmilla answered in a strong, determined voice. "I know."She realized that the Christ Child was back in heaven and would not come down for another year.

The family all went in to dinner.

This is a true story. My Grandmother died a long time ago, but her story lives on. Such is the power of memory and writing, and the beauty of a Catholic Christmas.

There are several books I would like and I shall make a wish list soon. Several are by Robert Hugh Benson, including his Friendship of Christ, None Other Gods, and Bernard of Clairvaux's complete Sermons on the Song of Songs. I f anyone has any extra pennies in this hard year...

Blindness and Sin: between a rock and a hard place

Today, again, in a discussion with an excellent trad young man who is a med student, I asked why youth his age did not use the Internet to find out information about the Faith, which is so obvious. One of his friends was arguing a point of Eastern Church Canon Law which took me 23 minutes to find on line. The guy probably spends more time waiting in line and getting his daily latte.

That generation can text, tweet, use all the social networking available and yet cannot find out about basic questions concerning their own Catholic Faith. Infused knowledge is great and comes in prayer but, we must try and find out as much as our busy schedules allow concerning the doctrines of our own religion.

There is NO excuse, except sin.

If there is a block in my life concerning anything, there is probably sin hiding somewhere in my soul, mind, heart. It is not good enough for me to say, "I do not know where to look,"  "I do not have the interest," or "I do not have time," or, "It is too hard to be a Catholic."

It is harder to lose one's self for all eternity.

Begging God to show me my sin requires energy and time. It requires a harsh objectivity.

And from the days of John the Baptist until now, the kingdom of heaven suffereth violence, and the violent bear it away. Matthew 11:12 DR

Make your own coffee at home and use the Net to read the Divine Office daily, to check out the Catholic Encyclopaedia  and the Vatican website. I have given you the links on the names, guys. 

Sloth, by the way, is a sin. A serious sin, one of the Deadly Sins....we forget those. I did an examination of those in the perfection series. Here is one link-

and you can follow the tags.  I have done all the work for you, kids!

Have a nice day!