Sunday, 31 March 2013

from 'Spe Salvi'

Day by day, man experiences many greater or lesser hopes, different in kind according to the different periods of his life.
Sometimes one of these hopes may appear to be totally satisfying without any need for other hopes.
Young people can have the hope of a great and fully satisfying love; the hope of a certain position in their profession, or of some success that will prove decisive for the rest of their lives.

When these hopes are fulfilled, however, it becomes clear that they were not, in reality, the whole. It becomes evident that man has need of a hope that goes further.
It becomes clear that only something infinite will suffice for him, something that will always be more than he can ever attain.

In this regard our contemporary age has developed the hope of creating a perfect world that, thanks to scientific knowledge and to scientifically based politics, seemed to be achievable.
Thus Biblical hope in the Kingdom of God has been displaced by hope in the kingdom of man, the hope of a better world which would be the real “Kingdom of God”.
This seemed at last to be the great and realistic hope that man needs. It was capable of galvanizing—for a time—all man's energies.
The great objective seemed worthy of full commitment.

In the course of time, however, it has become clear that this hope is constantly receding.
Above all it has become apparent that this may be a hope for a future generation, but not for me.
And however much “for all” may be part of the great hope—since I cannot be happy without others or in opposition to them—it remains true that a hope that does not concern me personally is not a real hope.
It has also become clear that this hope is opposed to freedom, since human affairs depend in each generation on the free decisions of those concerned.

If this freedom were to be taken away, as a result of certain conditions or structures, then ultimately this world would not be good, since a world without freedom can by no means be a good world.
Hence, while we must always be committed to the improvement of the world, tomorrow's better world cannot be the proper and sufficient content of our hope.

And in this regard the question always arises: when is the world “better”?
What makes it good?
By what standard are we to judge its goodness?
What are the paths that lead to this “goodness”?

Let us say once again: we need the greater and lesser hopes that keep us going day by day.
But these are not enough without the great hope, which must surpass everything else.

This great hope can only be God, who encompasses the whole of reality and who can bestow upon us what we, by ourselves, cannot attain.
The fact that it comes to us as a gift is actually part of hope.

God is the foundation of hope: not any god, but the God who has a human face and who has loved us to the end, each one of us and humanity in its entirety.

His Kingdom is not an imaginary hereafter, situated in a future that will never arrive; his Kingdom is present wherever he is loved and wherever his love reaches us.

His love alone gives us the possibility of soberly persevering day by day, without ceasing to be spurred on by hope, in a world which by its very nature is imperfect.

His love is at the same time our guarantee of the existence of what we only vaguely sense and which nevertheless, in our deepest self, we await: a life that is “truly” life.

MIchael Voris "On Hurting People's Feelings" aka Saving Souls

How to Avoid Intimidation

Risibility, a Joyful Trait & Fr Vincent Capodanno, USMC

Defend Life - Michael Voris

"Holding on to Hope" Dr. Scott Hahn

Aquinas & the Angels - Dr Peter Kreeft

Victimae Paschali Laudes & Alleluia

REGINA CAELI LAETARE, Antifona gregoriana, Schola Gregoriana Mediolanens...

Paul the Apostle

Saturday, 30 March 2013

Mahler Symphony No 2 C minor Resurrection Claudio Abbado Lucerne Festiva...

The 'Irrelevant' Church

Pope Francis - Easter Vigil Homily

Traditional Latin Catholic Mass: Easter Sunday

Mozart: Gloria (Great Mass in C min K.427)

Romans 6:3-11

Do you not know that all of us who have been baptized into Christ Jesus were baptized into his death?
We were buried therefore with him by baptism into death, so that as Christ was raised from the dead by the glory of the Father, we too might walk in newness of life.

For if we have been united with him in a death like his, we shall certainly be united with him in a resurrection like his.

We know that our old self was crucified with him so that the sinful body might be destroyed, and we might no longer be enslaved to sin.
For he who has died is freed from sin.

But if we have died with Christ, we believe that we shall also live with him.
For we know that Christ being raised from the dead will never die again; death no longer has dominion over him.

The death he died he died to sin, once for all, but the life he lives he lives to God.
So you also must consider yourselves dead to sin and alive to God in Christ Jesus.

Easter Vigil: Blessing of fire and Exsultet in St. Peter's Basilica - Ap...

Come to the Water

Ps Ex15 ~ I will sing to the Lord, glorious his triumph! I will sing, I...

Prince Of Egypt - Parting and Crossing The Sea

Jonah - Full Movie

Angel of Death - Passover

The Binding - Abraham sacrifice Isaac

GENESIS Creation

The Apostles [Edward Elgar op 49]

Sadly not the wonderful Adrian Boult version but still tear-inducing, heart-soaring prologue,dawn,turn ye,Judas & Euntes... What has ever been more dramatic than the crescendo 'Lord how long shall the wicked triumph? Yet they say the Lord shall not see' and the whispering "He who planted the ear, shall He not hear? He who formed the eye, shall He not see?" ...and if anyone doesn't choke-up by the time it gets to the voiceless "Eloi, Eloi..."? Tears flow...listen and remember what this is all about and let the world be seen through Heaven's eyes....

Friday, 29 March 2013

Fulton Sheen- The Last Good Friday

“If we have never sought, we seek Thee now;
Thine eyes burn through the dark, our only stars;
We must have sight of thorn-pricks on Thy brow,
We must have Thee, O Jesus of the Scars.
The heavens frighten us; they are too calm;
In all the universe we have no place.
Our wounds are hurting us; where is the balm?
Lord Jesus, by Thy Scars, we claim Thy grace.
If, when the doors are shut, Thou drawest near,
Only reveal those hands, that side of Thine;
We know to-day what wounds are, have no fear,
Show us Thy Scars, we know the countersign.
The other gods were strong; but Thou wast weak;
They rode, but Thou didst stumble to a throne;
But to our wounds only God’s wounds can speak,
And not a god has wounds, but Thou alone.”― Edward Shillito

LET man's soul be a sphere, and then, in this,
Th' intelligence that moves, devotion is ;
And as the other spheres, by being grown
Subject to foreign motion, lose their own,
And being by others hurried every day,
Scarce in a year their natural form obey ;
Pleasure or business, so, our souls admit
For their first mover, and are whirl'd by it.
Hence is't, that I am carried towards the west,
This day, when my soul's form bends to the East.
There I should see a Sun by rising set,
And by that setting endless day beget.
But that Christ on His cross did rise and fall,
Sin had eternally benighted all.
Yet dare I almost be glad, I do not see
That spectacle of too much weight for me.
Who sees Gods face, that is self-life, must die ;
What a death were it then to see God die ?
It made His own lieutenant, Nature, shrink,
It made His footstool crack, and the sun wink.
Could I behold those hands, which span the poles
And tune all spheres at once, pierced with those holes ?
Could I behold that endless height, which is
Zenith to us and our antipodes,
Humbled below us ? or that blood, which is
The seat of all our soul's, if not of His,
Made dirt of dust, or that flesh which was worn
By God for His apparel, ragg'd and torn ?
If on these things I durst not look, durst I
On His distressed Mother cast mine eye,
Who was God's partner here, and furnish'd thus
Half of that sacrifice which ransom'd us ?
Though these things as I ride be from mine eye,
They're present yet unto my memory,
For that looks towards them ; and Thou look'st towards me,
O Saviour, as Thou hang'st upon the tree.
I turn my back to thee but to receive
Corrections till Thy mercies bid Thee leave.
O think me worth Thine anger, punish me,
Burn off my rust, and my deformity ;
Restore Thine image, so much, by Thy grace,
That Thou mayst know me, and I'll turn my face.
                                                                           John Donne

Sunday, 24 March 2013

Pope Benedict's Palm Sunday Sermon 2012 [WYC}

Palm Sunday is the great doorway leading into Holy Week, the week when the Lord Jesus makes his way towards the culmination of his earthly existence.
He goes up to Jerusalem in order to fulfil the Scriptures and to be nailed to the wood of the Cross, the throne from which he will reign for ever, drawing to himself humanity of every age and offering to all the gift of redemption.
We know from the Gospels that Jesus had set out towards Jerusalem in company with the Twelve, and that little by little a growing crowd of pilgrims had joined them.
Saint Mark tells us that as they were leaving Jericho, there was a “great multitude” following Jesus (cf. 10:46). On the final stage of the journey, a particular event stands out, one which heightens the sense of expectation of what is about to unfold and focuses attention even more sharply upon Jesus.
Along the way, as they were leaving Jericho, a blind man was sitting begging, Bartimaeus by name. As soon as he heard that Jesus of Nazareth was passing, he began to cry out: “Jesus, Son of David, have mercy on me!” (Mk 10:47).
People tried to silence him, but to no avail; until Jesus had them call him over and invited him to approach. “What do you want me to do for you?”, he asked. And the reply: “Master, let me receive my sight” (v. 51). Jesus said: “Go your way, your faith has made you well.” Bartimaeus regained his sight and began to follow Jesus along the way (cf. v. 52).
And so it was that, after this miraculous sign, accompanied by the cry “Son of David”, a tremor of Messianic hope spread through the crowd, causing many of them to ask: this Jesus, going ahead of us towards Jerusalem, could he be the Messiah, the new David?
And as he was about to enter the Holy City, had the moment come when God would finally restore the Davidic kingdom?

The preparations made by Jesus, with the help of his disciples, serve to increase this hope. As we heard in today’s Gospel (cf. Mk 11:1-10), Jesus arrives in Jerusalem from Bethphage and the Mount of Olives, that is, the route by which the Messiah was supposed to come.
From there, he sent two disciples ahead of him, telling them to bring him a young donkey that they would find along the way. They did indeed find the donkey, they untied it and brought it to Jesus.
At this point, the spirits of the disciples and of the other pilgrims were swept up with excitement: they took their coats and placed them on the colt; others spread them out on the street in Jesus’ path as he approached, riding on the donkey.
Then they cut branches from the trees and began to shout phrases from Psalm 118, ancient pilgrim blessings, which in that setting took on the character of messianic proclamation: “Hosanna! Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord! Blessed is the kingdom of our father David that is coming! Hosanna in the highest!” (v. 9-10).
This festive acclamation, reported by all four evangelists, is a cry of blessing, a hymn of exultation: it expresses the unanimous conviction that, in Jesus, God has visited his people and the longed-for Messiah has finally come.

And everyone is there, growing in expectation of the work that Christ will accomplish once he has entered the city. But what is the content, the inner resonance of this cry of jubilation?
The answer is found throughout the Scripture, which reminds us that the Messiah fulfils the promise of God’s blessing, God’s original promise to Abraham, father of all believers: “I will make of you a great nation and I will bless you ... and by you all the families of the earth shall bless themselves” (Gen 12:2-3). It is the promise that Israel had always kept alive in prayer, especially the prayer of the Psalms.
Hence he whom the crowd acclaims as the blessed one is also he in whom the whole of humanity will be blessed.
Thus, in the light of Christ, humanity sees itself profoundly united and, as it were, enfolded within the cloak of divine blessing, a blessing that permeates, sustains, redeems and sanctifies all things.

Here we find the first great message that today’s feast brings us: the invitation to adopt a proper outlook upon all humanity, on the peoples who make up the world, on its different cultures and civilizations.
The look that the believer receives from Christ is a look of blessing: a wise and loving look, capable of grasping the world’s beauty and having compassion on its fragility.
Shining through this look is God’s own look upon those he loves and upon Creation, the work of his hands. We read in the Book of Wisdom:
“But thou art merciful to all, for thou canst do all things, and thou dost overlook men’s sins, that they may repent. For thou lovest all things that exist and hast loathing for none of the things which thou hast made ... thou sparest all things, for they are thine, O Lord who lovest the living” (11:23-24, 26).

Let us return to today’s Gospel passage and ask ourselves: what is really happening in the hearts of those who acclaim Christ as King of Israel?
Clearly, they had their own idea of the Messiah, an idea of how the long-awaited King promised by the prophets should act.
Not by chance, a few days later, instead of acclaiming Jesus, the Jerusalem crowd will cry out to Pilate: “Crucify him!”, while the disciples, together with others who had seen him and listened to him, will be struck dumb and will disperse.
The majority, in fact, was disappointed by the way Jesus chose to present himself as Messiah and King of Israel.
This is the heart of today’s feast, for us too.
Who is Jesus of Nazareth for us?
What idea do we have of the Messiah, what idea do we have of God?
It is a crucial question, one we cannot avoid, not least because during this very week we are called to follow our King who chooses the Cross as his throne.
We are called to follow a Messiah who promises us, not a facile earthly happiness, but the happiness of heaven, divine beatitude.
So we must ask ourselves: what are our true expectations?
What are our deepest desires, with which we have come here today to celebrate Palm Sunday and to begin our celebration of Holy Week?

Dear young people, present here today, this, in a particular way, is your Day, wherever theChurch is present throughout the world. So I greet you with great affection!
May Palm Sunday be a day of decision for you, the decision to say yes to the Lord and to follow him all the way, the decision to make his Passover, his death and resurrection, the very focus of your Christian lives.

It is the decision that leads to true joy, as I reminded you in this year’s World Youth Day Message – “Rejoice in the Lord always” (Phil 4:4).
So it was for Saint Clare of Assisi when, on Palm Sunday 800 years ago, inspired by the example of Saint Francis and his first companions, she left her father’s house to consecrate herself totally to the Lord. She was eighteen years old and she had the courage of faith and love to decide for Christ, finding in him true joy and peace.
Dear brothers and sisters, may these days call forth two sentiments in particular: praise, after the example of those who welcomed Jesus into Jerusalem with their “Hosanna!”, and thanksgiving, because in this Holy Week the Lord Jesus will renew the greatest gift we could possibly imagine: he will give us his life, his body and his blood, his love.
But we must respond worthily to so great a gift, that is to say, with the gift of ourselves, our time, our prayer, our entering into a profound communion of love with Christ who suffered, died and rose for us.
The early Church Fathers saw a symbol of all this in the gesture of the people who followed Jesus on his entry into Jerusalem, the gesture of spreading out their coats before the Lord. Before Christ – the Fathers said – we must spread out our lives, ourselves, in an attitude of gratitude and adoration.
As we conclude, let us listen once again to the words of one of these early Fathers, Saint Andrew, Bishop of Crete:
“So it is ourselves that we must spread under Christ’s feet, not coats or lifeless branches or shoots of trees, matter which wastes away and delights the eye only for a few brief hours. But we have clothed ourselves with Christ’s grace, or with the whole Christ ... so let us spread ourselves like coats under his feet ... let us offer not palm branches but the prizes of victory to the conqueror of death. Today let us too give voice with the children to that sacred chant, as we wave the spiritual branches of our soul: ‘Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord, the King of Israel’” (PG 97, 994).
We must forsake this world and all of its ways and cling to the Cross of our Lord, to His Throne, if we are to be saved.

Saturday, 23 March 2013

Wednesday, 20 March 2013

1000th Post - The New Pope and my two penn'orth

Any new papacy is unsettling..and we have no idea which way things will turn.

Admittedly the blogosphere in places has been shameful with their 'hatchet-jobs' and the media [regrettably with Catholic media representatives,commentators, journalists etc] have made every attempt to 'spin' the new Pope in their own image...and it would be dishonest to suggest there aren't some enthymemic veiled assaults on His Holiness the Pope Emeritus. God forgive us.
Now it's only a couple of days ago that I told everyone with some inferred comment on the Pope's recent actions to basically put a sock in it ..
So Mr Hypocrite has to concede that he can't keep his concerns under wraps for much longer
I have no-one to discuss these things with, being a virtual outcast on social media, so basically have to use here as a means of self-reflection...

To be fair I have some reservations about the 'start of things'...
...and so for the next few paragraphs I'll bare my soul and then shut up about it.
There's little point keeping worries inside - let the uncertainty out in the open then it can be dealt with as a reality or dismissed as the shadow-ghost of nothing but unnecessary fear.

GK Chesterton comments that St Thomas Becket had things in the right order - that he wore Gold vestments for the glory of God and the people's benefit; but wore a hair shirt beneath for the Glory of God and his own benefit.
When offered the ermine His Holiness is said to have said 'you wear it - the carnival is over';
and we've tales of the casting off of limousines and regalia and wearing a simple pectoral cross and recycled fisherman's ring that's only gold plated, the wearing of a gift of black boots and repeated appeals for the poor and being on the side of the poor...

But these 'symbols', adornments, trinkets, gaudy majesties aren't for your benefit Your Holiness, they're for - how do you Jesuits put it? The Greater Glory of God.

What did St Francis say to do with jewels?
To throw them in the river so their radiance would be intensified and God's creation made more wondrous.

What are the real treasures of the Church?
Silver and Gold your predecessor had not...

And St Laurence showed the Emperor of this world that our treasures were the beggars, cripples, widows, dispossessed. afflicted...

St Francis dressed in rags and begged to eat and rebuild God's Church but he ensured that when they returned to Calvary in the Mass the Blessed Sacrament arrived within Golden vessels...
...and I remembered Judas's 'That ointment could have been sold and the money given to the poor' and I remember Our Lord's rebuke...

Now I'm an old fashioned leftie of the Cardinal Manning/Rerum Novarum/Quadragesima Anno ilk - with a violent aversion to both evil dehumanising Hegelian/Marxian ideoporn and diabolical ultra-Capitalist, unrestrained-Market Libertarian 'survival of the fittest' rapine ideologies,  an old fashioned distributist who favours stringent progressive taxation and a right to work for a decent wage, universal healthcare and education, a system which doesn't force the sick to work and force mothers to abandon their children in their formative years, a safety-net welfare state where a government can universally serve us in providing for the dispossessed and disenfranchised....It is gravely immoral that we dwell in a world where hundreds of millions go hungry and grow sick and die from easily treatable diseases and don't even have clean drinking is the savagest indictment upon us all.

But I know what REAL poverty is...and it has bugger-all to do with money or lack of it
And don't get me wrong...I've been there, although nowhere near as bad as those in the developing world I know what it's like to go without food for days on end for lack of money, I've walked many miles with the rain bubbling and squelching out the sides of my shoes, I've had the terrifying fear of the bailiffs at the door with sledgehammer, electric drill and tally-book...I remember the long nights of tears shivering in the cold because we had neither heating nor hot water...I remember what it was like before the introduction of working family tax credit...not being able to afford a newspaper, living on the children's leftovers, scrambling down the back of the sofa for coppers to buy a loaf of bread,searching the charity shops for a tiny treat for the kids after finding a pound coin in a pair of old jeans...I know what lack of money is like...but that is not poverty...

It's poverty of the heart, of the mind, of the soul, of the conscience...
Real poverty is in loneliness and abandonment, in feeling unwanted and unloved...and being so utterly lost and trapped that one is unable to reach out to another or realise one is not alone...

Mother Theresa fully recognised this poverty - and acknowledged that the US was the poorest nation in the world - the metropolis of millions living on their own and never knowing or conversing with their neighbour - a nation that thrives by murdering its unborn and holds the most pornographic of ideologies that other human beings are a bother and a burden - rather than each an infinite cosmos in themselves...each made in a unique way in the Image of God Himself...
The poverty of being rudderless and without a guide...trapped in relativism where nothing has any meaning or value...nothing to believe in, nothing to hope for...nothing to trust, no-one to love, no-one to tell you that you are loved...everyone is a stranger..and none moreso than onseself...
The poverty of seeing life as being nothing but a huge mockery that ends with us being food for worms...
The poverty of lies that have pierced the heart of wonder, smeared beauty with the dust of neglect and disrespect, and shattered hope into a thousand melting shards of icy regret and guilt and despondency...

...and I know the right kind of Poverty we must endure in response which will bring us the greatest happiness...the only true Happiness.
Why did God make us?
To know, love and serve Him in this world and to be happy with Him forever in the next
Being Poor in Spirit and giving everything we have back to God.
Empoverishing ourselves to be meek, to mourn, to be pure in heart, to be peacemakers, to hunger and thirst and even be persecuted for righteousness's sake....

It's a way of Faith, Hope and Love, guided by Prudence, Tempterance, Fortitude and Justice, strengthened by Knowledge, Understanding, Wisdom, Counsel, Fortitude, Piety and Fear of the Lord and - above all things performed in the true strength of gentleness, the true patience of forbearing incessant endurance and the true humility of seeing everything through Heaven's eyes...

So yes, Your Holiness - if you are for Poverty I stand with you - Ita Ita Ita...
if you wish to cast off every gaudy trinket, every Vatican treasure, artwork down to the last bead and goldleaf flake...take down every Raphael and Michelangelo and sell them to the highest bidder...
If you wish to empty the Holy See coffers and order every diocese across the world to do likewise so that our neighbour might benefit from the corporal works of mercy and for all our neighbours to acquire the things they truly deserve - food in their bellies, a roof over their heads, an education, medicine, a job, a family, a future, a community living in hope..then you are Peter and I will stand with you...
If you wish us all of us to share that cross and to live in the most austere ascetical way I'll do it...we'll do it!!!

But I want you to be a Peter who preaches what real Poverty is...
I want you to fight and be the strongest fighter against real your flock from it...
And to teach us, guide us, lead us in the ways of being truly Poor in Spirit...
And not to simply perform the Corporal works of Mercy
But to go beyond to the Spiritual works of mercy which are so much more crucial to our souls...and it's where REAL Papal power resides - on the Spiritual Plane - and the war has turned into a very threatening and menacing spiritual battle of late...and we need a Pope who will know where his true power lies and uses it accordingly....

 Humility is for God to see and know...that which is seen by men is an already received reward.
Yes narcissistic false-ostentation, opulence, profligate squandering of money and resources is a scandal to our duty to be wise sensible stewards of all God has provided and the Holy Spirit holds in being...but in all things let God be that in a golden monstrance or in a Holbein Christ or a Brazilian slumchild grinning behind a schooldesk or an african woman crying for joy that she can wash her children

Now it is said that when His Holiness went to pray in San Maria Maggiore he ordered Cardinal Law's expulsion...
I will not question the motives or the action in itself on the grounds of justice; but Pius XI reminds us that Charity always goes beyond any demands for it - the outrage of the Pontiff is justifiable except that it has consequences and repercussions and demands that the story does not end here..He is Peter..Christ's shepherd who is here to call matter how heinous their crimes or shameful their scandal. There is a way to end this pain and he is called to find a resolution to it.

At the end of the Angelus His Holiness did not physically bless but told the crowd he would bless them silently in his is His prerogative but the outward signs of inward grace remind us of Our Creator and Redeemer...both may have their benefits but please don't diminish one at the cost to either.

Now please don't get all incensed at my potential bandwagon-jumping or downright disloyalty or hyper-critical hypocrisy but I want to be frank and brutally honest - get all my reservations off my chest so I can move forward and learn to know and love my new Pope...I want to love him the way I love the Pope Emeritus because every time I think of Pope Benedict or the Popes of the past century my heart leaps and my eyes moisten..even when I contemplate the pains, regrets, follies and anguishes of Paul VI I love him in that...and I want to love my new Pope and the only way is through baring everything to the light and letting God's radiance evaporate it like mist in the morning sun...

During yesterday's mass, as Fr Lombardi informed us, His Holiness did not distribute the Blessed Sacrament in order to not lengthen and complicate the Ceremony...
Peter is the Apostle of Apostles, Priest of Priests...
His Mission is twofold: To Preach His Lord's Gospel but primarily to feed and tender for His Lord's sheep.
There is nothing less important in the Priestly Ministry than the Mass - nothing more important than His Holiness' role of being In Persona Christi as he leads God's children back to Calvary where God proves His absolute Love for God by giving everything of His Humanity to Him for Our sake...
His Holiness should have given out Holy Communion and should have insisted upon it...for that action is the greatest sermon he could ever possibly give...nothing is more important than Christ and the world should be shown it...

Now the inherent courtesy within the Spanish language is well known - my old 'evangelisation' lecturer informed us that in Peru even the lowliest peasant would never dream of accusing someone of a misdemeanour except by indirect euphemism...on confronting a blatant thief rifling through stolen property they might say " I appear to have mislaid something".

Now this may seem really hyper-critical but what might work to a spanish-speaking audience most certainly won't to the rest of the world - it could be misinterpreted and inadvertently cause grave offence to those listening who don't understand the sincerity and technique of the speaker...

His Holiness is renowned for being an ardent Pro-Life defender and advocate; but there is one statement he repeats which grates like juddering cosmic machinery and invokes jaw-dropping incredulity to those who are not used to colloquial spanish euphemisms.
 When referring to abortion - the genocide of the unborn - the gravest most heinous  modern evil...
He calls it 'sending the child back to its Maker"
It's like a chasm opens - an all-consuming gulf - it might be utterly appropriate in a Latin-environment - containing all the implied underlying outrage and loathing at the action to the latin-listener...
...but the rest of the world isn't Spanish-speaking...and doesn't understand what you mean and sounds like there is some diminution in its deplorable depravity...especially when preached about in relation to impoverished children  and social justice.
We dwell among those in the Church promoting a diabolically distorted post-Bernardin 'seamless garment' mentality where abortion is seen as a mere injustice among many equal injustices...not the gravest crime of all....
 We can't have a Pope inadvertently using similar language [even if utterly incongruent to their ideologiy]

...and I'm sorry Your Holiness but someone has to tell you that colloquial euphemisms
can be used by people of evil intent to mean the exact opposite of what you mean to say.

There is a huge pro-Life uphill battle ahead for us all - Utilitarian Incrementalism that denies Solidarity and is willing to adopt the mantle of Caiaphas and compromise and sell-out their unborn neighbour to negotiate for the lives of other unborn
- The Rhonheimer position of 'prophylactic intention' which proposes to contravene humanae vitae and the fifth commandment and risk the lives of spouses of hiv+ victims and possibly the lives of millions in the developing world.
- The madly disoriented Catholic academics who conspire with the culture of death and propose experimentation of embryos developed without brains via ANT & OAR.
- The deceptive catholic ethicists and collaborating clerics who promote GIFT or even pro-fertility actions veering towards thinly-veiled IVF.
- Misguided misinterpreting Theology of the Body advocates who wish to promote Natural Family Planning as a limited, minor 'good in itself' - i.e. backdoor contraception by omission - rather than it being a critical recourse to moral disorder mitigated within the double effect in an emergency unwilled situation.
- A Pontifical Life Academy which endorses - YES ENDORSES - the German Bishops resolution to permit use of the Morning After Pill!!!??? A nighttmare meltdown of insane diabolical proportions.

...and if you wish me to go local?
And the inherent anti-Life wilderness in my own Church in my own country...
A Catholic Charity CAFOD which promotes and endorses 'sustainability' through contraception, 'prophylactic' condom use and population control!!!
Another Catholic Charity in the auspices of the Archbishop of Westminster - St John & St Elizabeth Hospital - which prescribes contraception and abortifacients, provides abortion referrals and sterilisations and has now become a major-provider of sex-change operations!!!!
A Catholic Education Service who conspired with a Labour Government to ban Catholic moral teaching in regards to Sexuality and the Culture of Death from the classroom...enforcing 'objective, impartial, non-partisan' information i.e. promotion of abortion, contraception and extramarital sex.
The same Catholic Education Service who allowed Connexions into Catholic schools to provide confidential  contraception and sex advice and abortion referrals and abortifacients.
 An Archbishop who gave an inaugural address at the commemoration of an abortionist to abortionists who then thanked them for the conscience clauses they did not have and then told them the Church had no business interfering with their clinical decisions!!!
An Archbishop who reprimands one of his representatives for telling the truth about London being the Capital City of the Culture of Death.
A Catholic hierarchy who spent years in silence or unofficial support  of the Liverpool Care Pathway while tens of thousands were starved, dehydrated and poisoned through backdoor euthanasia and the doctors and ethicists who were crying foul about it all were risking their livelihoods trying to save lives unaided!!!
 A self-defeating internecine Pro-Life movement which is in a state of civil war due to continued vendettas and personal agendas and belligerent personal attacks perpetrated by those who weren't  involved or even Catholic when the feuds began!!
 ...and that's before we get to those 'liberal & progressive' "Catholics" who wish to dismantle the whole edifice of Catholic moral teaching regarding Life and Sexuality - but who are still allowed to call themselves Catholic, still sponsored, funded and paid by Catholic institutions and dioceses, still endorsed by our hierarchy.
...or we get to the 'Professional Catholic' politicians who call themselves Pro-Life but very rapidly prove they have a version anathema to Catholic or even coherently logical understandings of the term.
...or we get to the plain and simple fact that the Catholic Church of England and Wales DOES NOT HAVE  a Pro-Life organisation!!!

Yes Your Holiness - if you wish to declare yourself as the Pope who will emphasise on the Poor and the Pro-Life message...we will be exultant and join you...

But you have to realise to what depths Holy Mother Church has descended - nay plunged- on an intellectual , pastoral and  evangelical level. The deception, collaboration, misrepresentation, obfuscation, laziness and flagrant sins of silence and omission need to be addressed, redressed, countered, exorcised and the Pro-Life movement needs to be revitalised....

...and finally Your Holiness, you come from an ostensibly Catholic country.
We don't.
And we're in trouble.
Not because of the external forces of materialism, secularism and relativism...
But because the Catholic Church is dying through negligence of the faithful by its shepherds and its teachers.
We have suffered generations of Catholics being denied the culture, the tradition and the teachings and praxes of Holy Mother Church.

And New Evangelisation WILL NOT WORK when those who are participating and actuating it aren't informed, catechised Catholics themselves...
For nearly a century the Church has reneged upon its moral duty to instruct the faithful on an Apologetic level - the last residual attempt was left to the Catholic Evidence Guild and a few missionary spirits and inspired authors and institutions.
Decades since the Vatican council explaining how and what the Church teaches and does...
But barely a word on the why...
If we are to Love God and Serve God - Love and Serve Holy Mother Church - we need to KNOW about it..and begin to understand the why we believe, why we teach and do what we do...

We need a new apologetic revival before we can dare to attempt new evangelisation...
And for that we need a global revivification of the principles of the Catholic Evidence guild - AND to train our academics, educators and most especially our clerics accordingly in the ways and means of apologetics...

[and I mean real apologetics - dogmatic and fundamental moral theologicallly grounded - with the glorious simplicity beyond complexity of CEG exemplars like the works of Frank Sheed, Maisie Ward, Theodore Maynard, Cecily hastings, the von Hildebrands...and the contemporary work of the wondrous Peter Kreeft and Scott Hahn etc]

...and Catholic education needs rebuilt from the ground up and led by Vatican initiative and not by mere negligent Bishops conferences.

and Your Holiness you're a Jesuit and know how intensive the training should be for one entering into the priestly have witnessed the despondency and futility felt by those priests who lost their way because they were not adequately trained and instructed in the first place...

Have you any possible notion how many tens of millions have abandoned the Church because they were never instructed as to what the Church ever was - what it truly taught - what it truly did - and were never given the opportunity to realise how important and necessary and wanted they were and grow to understand how necessary the Church was for their lives...?
Can we possibly imagine the rudderless anxiety of the untrained priest as he has to 'wing it' because his Ordinary failed to be a pastor to him and provide him with the adequate education and experience to survive?

Bad priests, bad teachers, bad example....usually sourced in very, very good people who were let down by a system which never instructed or trained them themselves - so how could they have possibly done anything else but fail....?

Catholics are guilty of many things...failing to live the Faith, failing to preach the Faith
But the Apostles and their priests are responsible for the faithful not knowing the Faith....
And the Apostles are guilty for the neglect of their clergy and the corresponding disenfranchisement of the faithful.

Apologetics and Catechetics are the way forward - self-evangelisation before we can even dream of evangelising those on the outside...

...and let it start in this year of faith.

The Second answer in the Catechism is all we need
The answer to why God made me...
It's the Church's job to explain that answer and explain why and how and what we do the way we do...
Once that is taught - once that is shown by example...
Everything else will fall into place....

There: Rant over and the promise of a ton of rosaries for His Holiness's intention; but I would have felt forever restrained and restrictively reserved if I hadn't said it...throw whatever accusations and complaints you want at me...but at least I can look at you - and  myself- in the eye now that I've said it.

UPDATE: I'm sorry Ladies & Gentlemen but I'm afraid I will NOT publish comments of open dissent and hostility - I repeat I too have my reticences and concerns - but I will not give any media or blog reports any credence when they suggest that potential 'failings' as Archbishop will be made manifest in His Holiness' Papacy - with the Keys its Keeper adopts new insights, discernments and responsibilities. Holy Mother Church will not be thwarted - An Archbishop who might [reputedly] have questionable positions on the EF, civil partnerships or the nuances of Just War is not the same man who is now Pope Francis - Peter speaks and acts as Peter - not as Fr Jorge...

Monday, 18 March 2013

The Real Poverty of ignorance, injustice, ingratitude, ugliness & loneliness

“I feel that the greatest destroyer of peace today is abortion, because it is a war against the child, a direct killing of the innocent child, murder by the mother herself.” – Mother Teresa
“And if we can accept that a mother can kill her own child, how can we tell other people not to kill one another?” – Mother Teresa
“Any country that accepts abortion is not teaching its people to love, but to use violence to get what they want. That is why the greatest destroyer of love and peace is abortion” – Mother Teresa
“Any country that accepts abortion is the poorest of the poor” – Mother Teresa

“Many people are concerned with children of India, with the children of Africa where quite a few die of hunger, and so on. Many people are also concerned about the violence in this great country of the United States. These concerns are very good. But often these same people are not concerned with the millions being killed by the deliberate decision of their own mothers. And this is the greatest destroyer of peace today- abortion which brings people to such blindness.” – Mother Teresa
“It is a poverty to decide that a child must die so that you may live as you wish” – Mother Teresa

 An American reporter asked her which is the poorest country she had ever been to. Answering in a very Mother Teresa like manner, she said, “Yes, yes, yes. I have been to many countries and seen much poverty and suffering. Everywhere I go people tell me of their hardships and struggles, and ask for help, and I give what I can. But of all the countries I have been to, the poorest one I have been to is America.” Somewhat shocked, the reporter informed Mother Teresa that America was one of the richest countries and questioned how it could be the poorest. “Because”, she replied, “America suffers most from the poverty of loneliness.”

Creating a Pope in their own image...

Aren't you just sick of it all?
I refuse to engage with facile hatchet-jobs and malvinas-mania
..and as for the CVeebies spinning faster than a kenwood multichef and then having the audacity to accuse others of doing it and pontificate that they're above that sort of thing?!!
Ivereigh et al are plastic Mahonys - sans the frankness and erudition.

Less than a week into the Pontifical role and every word and act is being apophenically scrutinised:

"His Holiness ate an apple for lunch"
What can this mean?
A defiance of Pope Benedict's opulent profligate grandiosity when he [so "Vatican  insiders" tell us] dined on gold-flaked pomegranates?
Solidarity with the oppressed amazonian indigent orchard-farmers?
Maybe it's a snub to the fascist Junta 'Banana' Republics?
That by preferring things fruity maybe he's going to change Catholic teaching on clerical celibacy?
That by eating a Pink Lady he's going to allow homosexual and women priests?
That he loves [apple-label] Beatles Music and wishes to insert the lyrics to John Lennon's "Imagine" into the second Eucharistic prayer ?
That by eating an Apple he is expressing disdain for Microsoft's population control program in the developing world?

Ye gods!!!
...and I can understand the good intentions of Fr Tim & Bishop Davies & Fr Z...
But seriously!!!??
Calling for Loyalty to Pope Francis??!!!
Have they any conceivable notion on how gravely offensive and 'bang out of order' this is?
He is the Successor to Peter: End of Story.
Those who are take great umbrage at the suggestion we're not...
Those who aren't have no need to be reminded that they 'might possiby be doing something wrong?' rather they need their backsides kicked from here to next Whitsun and back...If they aren't loyal to the Pope they're, as someone aptly put it; "Protestants speaking Latin"...

 But to call for Loyalty? if we're the Tory Party and there's an imminent vote on a European issue?
 Sorry but I want to bang all your heads together...

At Present I regrettably have to join with Clement Attlee and say to virtually anyone inferring all manner of hyperbolic speculations from anything our New Pope says or does - ESPECIALLY in relation to the Pope Emeritus...

"A period of silence on your part would be welcome"