Recent Posts

Wednesday 7 May 2014


On Pope Paul VI Being Beatified


I learned this on Father Ray Blake's blog today. For me, the most important encyclical of the last century was and is Humanae Vitae. 

Paul VI proved not only to be a very brave man by promulgating the truths of the Catholic Church regarding bearing children, but he also prophesied clearly the explosion of sexual sins which would follow the separation of marriage and bearing of children.

He prophesied all the perversions of sexual behavior in that one infallible document. He published this against great pressure not to do so.

Too bad the Church in Great Britain never took Humanae Vitae seriously and allowed the teaching of contraception, which is against not only the Teaching Magisterium of the Church, but also natural law.

Yes, honor Paul VI by calling him blessed.

We need his intercession now more than ever.

A snippet from that great document---

Promotion of Chastity
22. We take this opportunity to address those who are engaged in education and all those whose right and duty it is to provide for the common good of human society. We would call their attention to the need to create an atmosphere favorable to the growth of chastity so that true liberty may prevail over license and the norms of the moral law may be fully safeguarded.
Everything therefore in the modern means of social communication which arouses men's baser passions and encourages low moral standards, as well as every obscenity in the written word and every form of indecency on the stage and screen, should be condemned publicly and unanimously by all those who have at heart the advance of civilization and the safeguarding of the outstanding values of the human spirit. It is quite absurd to defend this kind of depravity in the name of art or culture (25) or by pleading the liberty which may be allowed in this field by the public authorities.
Appeal to Public Authorities

23. And now We wish to speak to rulers of nations. To you most of all is committed the responsibility of safeguarding the common good. You can contribute so much to the preservation of morals. We beg of you, never allow the morals of your peoples to be undermined. The family is the primary unit in the state; do not tolerate any legislation which would introduce into the family those practices which are opposed to the natural law of God. For there are other ways by which a government can and should solve the population problem—that is to say by enacting laws which will assist families and by educating the people wisely so that the moral law and the freedom of the citizens are both safeguarded.

You better look at

Drudge today. If Drudge is suppressed, my prediction is going to be found correct.

comments are good...mostly

Few posts today

My computer is dying and yesterday I had to have a computer guru-guy help me with a virus. However, I think there is a larger problem.

So, if you do not see activity today, just pray I can sort this out. I really need a new lap top so please pray for that. Thanks so much.

Good Thoughts from Garrigou-Lagrange

The great Garrigou-Lagrange has explained what is called the "ineffability of love" This makes a good meditation. Think on this when praying for other people.

 Love as inclining to the good which is in things, like every tendency or inclination, contains something potential, and things are not intelligible except so far as they are in act and determined. A thing is known as an act or as a form; but love is rather a tendency, an impulse, or the weight by which the lover is drawn to that which is loved. St. Thomas said above: "The procession that takes place in the nature of goodness is not understood as being in the nature of a similitude but rather in the nature of something impelling and moving toward another."[406] He goes on to say: "This procession remained without a special name, but it can be called spiration" because of its inclination to a terminus not properly named. Love tends to the good that is in things; first it inclines after the manner of desire before it possesses the thing. The possession takes place by intuitive cognition, that is, by sight and touch in the sensible order; as long as the possession continues, love quiesces by fruition in that which is loved. Therefore bliss or the possession of the thing is not in love but in the intuitive cognition of what is loved, and this is the assimilation of the thing. This tendency of love and this fruition are known experimentally and it is difficult to obtain a speculative knowledge of them which can be expressed by a special and distinct name. Hence we said above that the terminus of intellectual enunciation has a proper name, namely, the word, but the terminus of the act of love has no special name.[408]
Because of this ineffability of love some say that love is something higher than knowledge and that knowledge is a kind of disposition for love. Such was the teaching of Plotinus, who speaks of a supreme hypostasis above the second hypostasis, which is intellect; the supreme hypostasis of Plotinus is the One-Good, which is not intelligible but which can be contacted by love. Later Scotus taught that bliss is essentially in the love of God. But St. Thomas showed that the intellect is simply superior to the will, which it directs, because the object of the intellect, that is, being, is more absolute and universal than the good.

 Although in this life the love of God is better than the abstract knowledge of God, in heaven the possession of God takes place by intuitive vision, which is necessarily followed by love just as the property is derived from the essence.
The following should be noted about the ineffability of love, which many consider superior to the intellect. When voluntarists and dynamists (like Bergson) say that there is more in motion than in immobility, they confuse the immobility of inertia, which is inferior to motion, with the immobility of perfection, which is above motion and which is the stability as something more perfect opposed to the instability of mobile things. These philosophers never use the terms stability and instability. There is more in motion than in the terminus from which the motion began, but there is not more than in the end of the motion itself, more in esse than in fieri (more in being than in becoming), more in a man than in the embryo. If you deny the superiority of this second kind of immobility, the stability of perfection, you must say with Eduard Le Roy that God Himself is in perpetual evolution and is creative evolution itself. In the treatise on the One God, St. Thomas asks whether God has life.[410] He replies that God possesses immanent life of the highest degree, subsisting intelligence itself whose measure is the one stable instant of eternity, namely, the stable now, not the fluid moment of time which is ever fleeting and ever unstable.
When, therefore, many say that the intellect is more imperfect than love because it is static and immobile, they do not take into consideration sufficiently the distinction between the imperfect immobility of inertia and the perfect stability which is the goal of the highest contemplation of immutable truth. Absolute dynamism ought logically to deny the immobility of God Himself and confuse God with mundane evolution. And anti-intellectualism, professed by many voluntarists, ought to take the stand that the intellect is not a simply simple perfection and that God does not know Himself as Plotinus taught about the supreme hypostasis which he had placed above the first intelligence. This is, of course, absolutely inadmissible. We can concede, however, that the human intellect as such sometimes materializes the life of the spirit inasmuch as it knows the spirit in the mirror of sensible things. In this way the human intellect understands spiritual qualities according to the analogy of quantity and speaks of a high or broad spirit or of the height of understanding.
Because of this ineffability of love it follows, as St. Thomas says in this article, that the relations which arise from the procession of love are unnamed. Wherefore the name of the person proceeding in this manner is not a proper name but a name accommodated from the usage of the Scriptures, namely, the Holy Ghost (Holy Spirit) as we see it used in the formula of baptism.

A Victory in The Midst of Defeats

France 24 on Kidnapped Girls

Education Blues...Comments?

From John Smeaton

Monday, 5 May 2014

Stolen Childhood conference tackles child sexualisation

An important conference on child sexualisation held in London last week was organized by the Combined Working Party of the Lords and Commons Child Protection Group. It covered sex education, the grooming and abuse of children through social media, and how to combat bullying and same-sex parenting. It featured Antonia Tully, of SPUC's Safe at School, amongst other leaders.

It's important that parents in particular thoroughly immerse themselves in these dangers to our children. There are already moves in this Parliament which are paving the way for the introduction of compulsory sex education in the next Parliament. Watch this space.

Parents cannot expect the overwhelming majority of church leaders of all denominations to help them in combatting these dangers. On the contrary. This is the tragic reality of the plight of children and of parents in the Church and in the society of the early 21st century.

Prepare for battle!

More will follow....

Persecution Watch

More prayers, please

Dust, fertilizer, and weed killers out here in the middle of corn country have caused another asthma flare.

Sigh...the entire time I lived in Europe, I did not have asthma. I only get this in three states-all agricultural areas. Prayers, please and for my eyes, which have not healed yet.


Do Any Western Leaders Care?

Very Urgent Request for Prayers

Someone is going to get an abortion this weekend. She is a visitor from the EU. Please pray God changes her mind.


On Third Orders and ...

Now, at the end of the semester, I asked my student for an idea for a post. "Third Orders" was the answer, so here is a post.

Third Orders have been part of the lay life of the Church for centuries. The origin of Third Orders is truly shrouded in history's mists, as there are many ideas of the connections between laypeople and monasteries or convents.

One can point to the Lay Brothers who worked with the Benedictines early on, remaining lay, but wearing the habit and doing manual labor in the monasteries. According to the Catholic Encyclopedia, the Knights Templar allowed lay members to work alongside them, but whether these lay men were knights, sergeants, or farmers (obviously, not priests), is not clear.

Agreeing that the Benedictines most likely invented the idea of the lay oblate, one can trace other third orders as later developments.

But, the "regular" that is, laity who live in monasteries or convents no longer exist, as this order was suppressed, but lay brothers do, as most men who live in monasteries who are not to be ordained are now called lay brothers. Franciscan houses hold many lay brothers. The distinction has been blurred as some take vows of chastity, poverty and obedience, which technically make them "religious" and not "lay".

The old division of lay and choir brothers or nuns exist rarely in some orders. 

The other term for a person in a third order who lives in the world is "secular", but this is also confusing, as diocesan priests are also called "secular priests" as opposed to "religious" priests who belong to orders.

The real term for a third order lay person is "tertiary". 

But, the secular who is a lay person does not make vows. Lay third order members may be found among the Benedictines (Oblates), Franciscans, Dominicans, Carmelites, Augustinians, and other new orders.

I am a member of a third order which is new, but at this time I do not want to share the name.

Being a member of a third order involves more prayer than what many lay people desire to do and the prayer is specific to the order.

However, lay third order members do have some prayers in common, such as some of the Divine Office.
I, for example, do not say all the seven hours of prayer at this time, although some days I am able to do so.
When I am working, I can only say one or two of the hours.

I am very Benedictine in my spirituality, but sadly, have not been able to be an oblate, as one must live close to a monastery, which I have not.

Other prayers said by the tertiary are the rosary, and set prayers of the specific order. Canon Law notes this:

Associations whose members share in the spirit of some religious institute while in secular life, lead an apostolic life, and strive for Christian perfection under the higher direction of the same institute are called third orders or some other appropriate name.

Just to complicate matters, there are other associations of lay people with different canonical status.

These are: secular institutes, associations of the faithful, communities, movements and groups. If you really want an indepth look at these, here is the link concerning the Canon Law.

A list is found here:

It is important to remember that members of these orders are all lay. For many years in my youth, I was a member of such a group, but never made a solemn promise. I made yearly promises.

I can refer to one group, and a blog post which I am putting here, which explains more about such groups. Here are some quotations from man who started a lay association of the faithful, Ferdi McDermott:

There is no ontological difference between a professed religious and a layman. There is an ontological difference between an ordained man and a layman. Hence the nature of a vocation to the priesthood and a vocation to the religious life is completely different. Secular priests, for example, do not live the evangelical counsels in a special way (although they are usually celibate and obedient to a bishop), but they are certainly called to the priesthood. They also tend to respond to the invitation to the evangelical counsels in a generous way, according to circumstances and custom.

Marriage is also a state which is – it seems to me – profoundly ontological: the two people become one flesh, and this can never be undone, except by death. Although they are free to marry again if one partner dies, it is likely that marriage has some kind of effect on the soul, which is, after all, inextricably bound up with the flesh. This question has always been a mysterious one.

Vocations to the ordained ministry and to marriage depend on sacraments instituted by Christ himself. Also, marriage – in some sense - is part of the original blueprint of creation. Priesthood is an accident of history (even if a happy one) which would not have come to pass but for Adam’s sin, for without Adam’s sin, no great sacrifice was called for.

....May I add here that one should join a third order or association of the faithful if one shares a charism with the group.

So, in the twentieth century the evangelical conception of the ministry of the Church is restored, with a variety of callings, but the same Spirit to animate them all. (cf. Corinthians 12)

Thus, while the single state may be a transitional one, it is not necessarily so. In the context of a real vocation to a kind of diakonia in the Church or the world (such as teaching or nursing, for example) it can be where God wants someone to be for a whole lifetime.

This is because the Church needs such people in the midst of the world: “the laity, by their very vocation, seek the kingdom of God by engaging in temporal affairs and by ordering them according to the plan of God.” It was this freedom, within the world, that enabled Pauline Jaricot, Joan of Arc and Catherine of Siena to immerse themselves in politics, for the good of all, as well as in a life of prayer.

It was this freedom, in our own age, that allowed Frank Duff, founder of the Legion of Mary, to minister to the prostitutes of Dublin, and to cut though the political red tape that stood in the way of helping them to improve their lot.

The choice, then, of this evangelical freedom, for the reasons which St Paul explained in his first letter to the Corinthians, is a radical option that is still valid today; one which remains open to single people seeking to do God’s will in the world. As such, it is a witness to perfect charity, inasmuch as it is ordered to the giving of self in the lay apostolate.

In the modern Church, as at different times in the past, various associations and secular institutes, approved by the Church, assist single lay people to persevere in their way of life. These organisations, such as the Third Orders, Opus Dei, and various other groups, are useful to such people and can make their apostolic efforts more fruitful.

Another famous blogger, Anita Moore, is a Third Order Dominican, and the famous tweeter and blogger, CatholicBandita, Lisa Graas, is a Third Order Passionist.  It would be interesting to know if more bloggers were in third orders.