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Thursday 13 September 2012

Travellers, be careful

U.S. State Department alert: Embassies in Armenia, Burundi, Egypt, Kuwait, Sudan, Tunisia and Zambia all issued warnings on Wednesday that don't report any specific threat but note that demonstrations can become violent and advise Americans in those countries to be particularly vigilant.
Also on Wednesday, between 300 and 400 Muslims protested outside the U.S. consulate in Morocco's largest city, Casablanca,

Pat Buchanan, the voice of reason again...

Prayer of St. Louis de Montfort

Today, I, a faithless sinner, renew in your hands my Baptismal vows; I renounce Satan forever, his pomps and works; and I give myself entirely to Jesus Christ, the Incarnate Wisdom, and will carry my cross after Him all the days of my life, and will be more faithful to Him than I have ever been. With the entire heavenly court as my witness, I choose you this day for my Mother. I deliver and consecrate myself to you, my body and soul, myself, both interior and exterior, and the worth of my good actions, past, present and future; leaving to you the total right of disposing of me, and all that belongs to me, according to your wish, for the greater glory of God in time and in eternity.

Vatican Press Office Problems Again

UPDATE: Since I wrote this, the Vatican has changed its tune and issued a strong condemnation of the violence. Boy, that office needs to get its act together. Here is the link.

I am aware of a press release from the Vatican Press Office, which has poor credibility as an office for this reader. I am waiting for clarifications. Let us just say that the release was poorly worded and provocative, and, thankfully, not infallible, folks.

Last year, we had the trouble with the non-approved economic document from the Vatican which caused a scandal. One can look at Fr. Z. and archives for my comments on that dismal affair over a period of several days in October.

Now, we have another knee-jerk reaction press release, which I cannot believe would be approved by the Pope.

Last Advent, the Pope said the enemy is within the Church. Sadly, this may be true and some may be in the Vatican itself.

Violence is always to be condemned and violence as a means to an end is just only in defence against evil.

I am perplexed and ashamed that those in authority did not check or let this statement yesterday pass. More later on this subject...The most one can say is that it was badly worded. But it is insensitive to the dead and their families and falls into the deceit of those who perpetrated the violence. Why, I do not know

God bless all the families of those who were so brutally murdered in Libyan. God forgive those who believe in communist and Marxist revolution and those who would pander to men of violence for the sake of peace.

Catholics and men of good will did not provoke or start this violence.

  1. We are what we believe. The only true religion is the Catholic religion. Islam is a man-made religion, not one of the two revealed religions which are Judaism and Catholicism. As Catholics it is our duty to spread the Gospel as commanded by Christ. If we give in to deceit and falsehoods in our own thinking, we cannot save souls. That is what we must do. Saving souls means understanding that there are objective truths revealed to us by the Trinity.
    We can objectively criticize a heresy or a false religion and we must. We do not have to use subjective arguments.
    I know many nice and polite, entertaining and gracious atheists. However, I try to win them over to the true Faith for the sake of their souls. Dialogue is not necessarily the meeting of equals. Atheists are wrong about their world view. Moslems are wrong about their views of the Triune God and His plan for salvation. We cannot pretend their views are of God or that we can merely ignore their own plans for world dominance. There is a lot of confusion concerning the politics of Islam. Islam is basically a materialistic religion, (as is liberation theology) which sees the necessity for a kingdom of religion on earth by any means, including violence. To say otherwise is to contradict the writings and history of this false religion. That some Moslems disagree with each other is not the question here. We cannot make comparisons with Christianity, as God is our founder. That the founder of Islam used the Bible and Torah for some of his ideas is known by scholars and obvious to keen readers. That the Moslems deny the Divine establishment of both the Old and the New Testament is a serious problem of their revisionist history. That they deny Christ and want others to deny Christ should be our concern.
    People died in the past two days because of fanaticism which is written into the texts. That Catholics choose to admit this fact or deny it is a question of honesty. Once we lose the ability to critique objectively anything which is not the truth, we lose not only our Catholic identity but our ability to be holy. Holiness is based on objectivity. The Catholic martyrs were objective critics. They knew the truth and refused to compromise. We cannot do less.

Catholicism is a Religion of History

Thanks to Wiki-Bede's Ecclesiastical History
Yesterday, even though there were some soft articles on cute, I set a record for posting. 13.

Today, I shall "go light" and let you all catch up on the posts of the last several days.

I am a member of the last generation of classical education until the revival in the 1990s and 2000.  What I got in high school are courses which some schools have revived.

History was a key course and not just one type of history but several years of history.

Sadly, people who have not studied world history, American history or European history are doomed not to see current events in the correct light.

There is a context for all political events. One may disagree on the nature of that context but one cannot deny it.

I see a lot of British and American people in denial because they do not have a historical framework for understanding current events.

I am very discouraged by this, especially when those people are Catholic.

Since Christ came into the world, we are a people of history. Our Church is historical.

We are based in history because of the Incarnate Christ.

If we do not understand this, we are basically not Catholic, but something else. We must remember and memorize. Even our Mass is a Memorial, as well as the event of Calvary, the Passion of Christ offered in an unbloody manner over and over again.

“To be steeped in history is to cease being Protestant”

wrote Blessed Cardinal John Henry Newman.

He was not merely referring to the Fathers of the Church but the entire Incarnational history of the Catholic Faith.

We are a people of history. You can decide if you are a Catholic or not.
But, you cannot deny the history created by the Trinity for our salvation.

Salvation History is real. That term means we have a duty to learn history.

Or, the Church will disappear in areas around the world.

This is your decision as a Catholic.

Where are the young apologists?

Giovanni Battista Crespi The Blessed Virgin Guiding St. Dominic to Victory over the Albigensians
It may be too late, but we need a generation of apologists who are trained in debate and know the Catholic Faith inside and out. What I have seen in discussions concerning the events of the past few days indicates a woeful ignorance on the part of most Catholics regarding history, politics, civics, and debate.

What happened in the school systems of America and England was the destruction of rational discourse.

Very few young people know how to debate. They cannot think rationally and objectively. They do not have the knowledge they need to argue points of religion or politics.

We may have lost the battle already, or maybe not.

War is the result of a breakdown of communications and aggression. So there is an oppressor and a defender, offence and defence.

Why cannot some people understand that Catholics can take the offence in arguing and win? We have the best teaching in the world and God for the Founder of our religion.

Ours is not a man-made but a revealed religion and we are given grace to understand and appropriate our Faith.

What has happened is that relativism and subjectivism have destroyed people's ability to think.

One must learn how to think. Those who know how to think must teach others.

I taught logic for more years than I can remember. I taught debate. It must be learned.

Very few of my university and college students knew how to think before my classes.

They learned.

If Catholics cannot enter into debate and argument, we cannot evangelize.

Souls are being lost because some of us are lazy and many are ignorant of the Faith, even priests.

This must change.

We Catholics have 4,000 years of salvation history at our finger tips, as explained by the Catholic Church.
We have encyclicals, catechisms, sermons, the writings of saints, and more. We have the teaching of Christ, Who is God, Himself.

We can only win. We cannot lose the argument. But, if we are ignorant or lazy, we give the argument away.

And, we are not arguing or debating trivia. We are engaged in warfare for the souls of men and women. We are fighting for civilization.

If we lose, it is our own fault. We need prayer but we need intelligence and training as well.

For parents some advice from St. John Chrysostom

St John Chrysostom is a Doctor of the Church and a man for our time. His time was rent with serious splits among Catholics and the failing Roman empire.

His strengths were his great classical education and his intelligence, which coupled with faith brought about two mighty weapons against chaos-his oratory and exegesis of the Scriptures. We still use his sermons and insights today. Of course, all Byzantine Catholics owe him great gratitude for the sublime Divine Liturgy he wrote. It is beautiful. I have been in this church pictured below.

We need some Chrysostoms. Pray for them. Now. St. John Chrysostom, pray for us and for the Church.

Here are two quotations from this great saint for parents.

Children must be instructed in the Scriptures, beginning with the learning of psalms and hymns.  "But now your children will utter songs and dances of Satan, like cooks, and caterers, and musicians; no one knows any psalm but it seems a thing to be ashamed of even, a mockery and a joke. There is the treasury house of all these evils. For whatsoever soil the plant stands in, such is the fruit it bears; if in a sandy and salty soil, of like nature is its fruit; if in a sweet and rich one, it is again similar. So the matter of instruction is a sort of fountain. Teach him to sing those psalms which are so full of the love of wisdom. When in these you have led him on from childhood, by little and little you will lead him forward even to the higher things"  (Hom. IX  On Colossians)

On the importance of instructing children in the Holy Scriptures
"Do you wish your son to be obedient? From the very first, "Bring him up in the chastening and admonition of the Lord." Never deem it an unnecessary thing that he should be  a diligent hearer of the divine Scriptures. For there the first thing he hears will be this: 'Honor thy father and thy mother'.  So then, this is for you. Never say, 'This is the business of monks'. Am I making a monk of him? No, there is no need he should become a monk. Why be so afraid of a thing so replete with so much advantage? Make him a Christian. For it is of all things necessary for laymen to be acquainted with the lessons derived from this source, but especially for children. For theirs is an age full of folly and to this folly are added the bad examples derived from the heathen tales, where they are made acquainted with those heroes so admired amongst them…[A child] requires therefore the remedies against these things. How is it not absurd to send children out to trades and to school, and to do all you can for these objectives, and yet, not to "Bring them up in the chastening and admonition of the Lord?" And for this reason truly we are the first to reap the fruits, because we bring up our children to be insolent and profligate, disobedient and mere vulgar fellows. Let us not then do this; no, let us listen to this blessed Apostle's admonitions "Let us bring them up in the chastening and admonition of the Lord". Let us give them a pattern. Let us make them from the earliest age apply themselves to the reading of the Scriptures…..Study not to make him an orator, but train him up to be a [Christian] philosopher. In the want of the one there will be no harm whatever; in the absence of the other, all the rhetoric in the world will be of no advantage. Tempers are wanted, not talking; character, not cleverness; deeds not word. These gain a man the kingdom. These confer what are benefits indeed. Whet not his tongue but cleanse his soul. I do not say this to prevent you teaching him these things, but to prevent your attending to them exclusively. Do not imagine that the monk alone stands in need of these lessons from Scripture. Of all others, the children just about to enter into the world especially need them." (Hom. XXI Ephesians)


 for the Feast of the Mother Sophia and Her Children shown above

The Church celebrates and is truly happy over the
newly born children and their happy mother. Like
the holy wisdom, she gave birth to three children
equal to the three theological virtues. In the company
of these wise virgins, she gazes on the Word and chaste
Groom. We join her in her happiness and sing:
O triple triumph - Faith, Hope and Charity - make us
firm in faith, hope and charity!