Catechism of the Catholic Church (675)
'Before Christ’s second coming the Church must pass through a final trial that will shake the faith of many believers. The persecution that accompanies her pilgrimage on earth will unveil the “mystery of iniquity” in the form of a religious deception offering men an apparent solution to their problems at the price of apostasy from the truth. The supreme religious deception is that of the Antichrist, a pseudo-messianism by which man glorifies himself in place of God and of his Messiah come in the flesh.' ~ Catechism of the Catholic Church (675)
Sunday, 28 February 2010
Pope Pius XII, far from being passive during the Holocaust, urged convents and monasteries to shelter Jews during the second world war.
The Holy Father, Pope Benedict XVI, talks often of the dignity of the human person, the dignity of the person made in the image and likeness of God. It is a theme to which he often returns. It is fundamental to our understanding of what it means to be human, to how we view and treat others, to how we perceive ourselves.
It is because of the great dignity of the human being that the Church upsets many people in Her teaching. Yet, it is because of the great dignity which has been conferred on the human race that the Church also condemns much that the World also rightly condemns.
The Nazi regime of Hitler set about eroding the sacred dignity accorded to its citizens. According to the Nazi ideology of racial purity, the Jews were to be treated not as a people 'crowned a little lower than the angels', but as a people stripped of their humanity, a people now to be viewed as less than human, or sub-human. The Church has always condemned any ideology which seeks to lower our appreciation of the innate dignity which comes from merely being human. Every human being is made 'in the image and likeness of God'.
Yet, it was not just the Jews who were victims of the Nazi regime's drive for racial and societal purity. The Nazi ideology's breathtaking spectrum of people deemed 'unfit' for German society was extended to gypsies, mentally ill people and homosexuals among others. This too, the Church condemns, since every human being has a dignity which has been conferred upon him or her from conception, with rights which come not from the State, but from merely being human and have, the Church would say, being 'made in the image and likeness of God'.
Paradoxically, it is because of proclaiming the great dignity conferred on mankind that the Church comes in for a great deal of criticism. In a society which appears to view human identity as a social construct, rather than as a gift, society now organises itself into sub-groups, all of whom have something different to say about our identity. Society organises itself according to a new set of rights for which each group struggles. From the women's groups advocating abortion to the LGBT movement, advocating gay marriage, their causes are seen in terms of struggle against an oppressive society, organised against their cause for 'freedom'. Personal identities are seen in terms of sexuality or gender and a struggle for personal 'freedom' or 'liberation'.
Yet how can the Catholic Church support these causes when these causes go against or run contrary to the great dignity which has been conferred upon the human race by our Creator and Redeemer? She cannot, nor should She support a human ideology which fails to recognise our true identity as being adopted children of God. How can a Catholic, even a Catholic who is of a homosexual orientation, support the promotion of an ideology which is not grounded in the dignity which he has been given as a human being? How can identify himself as a baptised person, a disciple of Our Lord Jesus Christ, while supporting an ideology based on his sexual orientation alone.
Since by His Incarnation, God so loved the pinnacle of His Creation, Man, that He 'became flesh and dwelt among us', the Church proclaims that human dignity has been raised to a new and mysterious height. By virtue of his or her Baptism into the life of Grace, the human being is a 'new creation'. His or her dignity is grounded in the life of the God Himself. The human person is born not merely for material or sexual gratification in this life, but called into the divine life of the Trinity. He or she is called into a new relationship with his Creator and Redeemer. In other words, every human being is called not to proclaim his personal freedom in terms of gender or sexuality, or even perhaps race, but to proclaim that God is Love, to love Him, serve Him and give Him glory in this life, so that he may be with Him forever in the next. Every human being is called to be a Saint.
Abortion, euthanasia and the practise of homosexuality are practises which run contrary to human dignity. All of them can be presented as fulfilling a personal human freedom and yet none of these give mankind true freedom. All of these practises destroy the unique friendship and relationship between man and his Creator. They destroy the life of God within the human being.
For every Catholic, of any gender or sexuality, the Christian life constitutes a struggle. For every Catholic, of any gender or sexuality, the Church consistently calls upon us to receive forgiveness and Grace by frequenting the Sacrament of Confession and by going to Holy Communion so that we may obtain both forgiveness and Grace to live the Christian life.
Our Lord Jesus Christ, through the ministry of the Priest, through His Absolution, shows us gentleness, compassion and mercy in our weaknesses, no matter whether we are of a homosexual or heterosexual orientation. He does not have 'favourites'. He does not condemn us in our sinfulness our weakness or our temptations. He does not refuse our coming to Him but welcomes us as His children, no matter what we have done. As St Paul says, 'Nothing can separate us from the love of Christ'. For the homosexual, or the heterosexual, both Confession and Holy Communion wash away the stain of sin from the soul. Again, that original innocence, or original purity which was given the soul at Baptism is restored. Through the ministry of the Priest, Christ Himself rescues what was lost, restores that which was sullied and restores once again for us, the innate dignity which comes from being made in the 'image and likeness of God'.
For all of these reasons, the Church can never support the desire of sub-groups in society which call for the liberation and freedom of individuals based upon gender and sexuality, since true liberation and true identity comes from God alone. The Church recognises that this dignity is conferred upon the human race from conception to death and that these rights to be treated with dignity should be respected. This singular right overrides all other claims to rights based upon human ideology. The Church states that all human beings, and directly homosexuals in orientation or heterosexual, should be treated with dignity, compassion and respect. Every man and woman has dignity. Nobody can take that dignity away from us.
Friday, 26 February 2010
Caroline Lucas sings 'Knockin' on Heaven's Door' outside Parliament...
So, today I met Caroline Lucas, Green Party candidate and MEP for Brighton. It was a 20 minute chat. I was able to gain a reassurance that she will meet George and Diane, friends of mine who have been treated woefully by all Government agencies and impress upon her my despair at a political process which canvasses select demographics of the United Kingdom at the expense of others. I told her that until I see a politician standing up for the very poor and marginalised in society, those without a voice in the political process (including the unborn), I could never give them a vote.
On reflection, a part of the reason that the Catholic Church and those marginalised groups for whom She is all too often a lone voice in the wilderness, do not curry favour with the political process is because we are so poorly organised. The LGBT community among other disparate groups vying for the attention of our elected representatives are incredibly well mobilised and organised, something which the Laity of the Church has not been for perhaps a long time. It is, of course, true that Our Lord said that His Kingdom is not of this World, but that does not mean we should not be campaigning proactively for Justice. That does not mean that we should not strive to change people's opinions on issues which go to the very heart of what it means to be human and to have dignity.
She asked me, specifically, about the Soup Run. She wishes to come to the Soup Run and to meet the homeless who St Mary Magdalen and the SVP feed every night, 52 weeks a year. Now, while it is true to say that this could be a 'photo opportunity', credit where it is due, because she is at least agreeing to meet people and hear the stories of people who do not receive a fair deal from Brighton. The homeless are in the receipt of a great deal of stigma and prejudice and were her meeting with them to go public, it would not necessarily be a vote winner for her to place herself in solidarity with them. For a start, the Council wouldn't like it, because the Council publicly maintain that there are only 7 homeless people in Brighton and the homeless constitute a community who many in society, even in 'diverse' Brighton, regard and treat with utter contempt.
I told her that the views of the Church from sex education, to the Human Fertilisation and Embryology Act, to the Abortion Act (1967) to civil partnerships had consistently been ignored by major political parties and so asked how on earth I, or my brothers and sisters in the Church could possibly think of voting for any of them. I did ask her whether she was interested in a forum where she could meet St Mary Magdalen's parishioners along with other candidates and tell them what they would do for them, but she seemed a little less enthusiastic about that. Still, one step at a time, eh? It is important that these prospective candidates meet every demographic in Brighton and hear our views as well, even if they don't like them.
I had, ironically, been on the phone to a canvasser for Nancy Platts, standing in place of David Lepper MP, 5 minutes before, who was so intrigued by my tirade against Labour and all it has done, while still claiming to be the natural party of Catholics, that she asked if I had ever considered entering politics myself. Let's face it, in Brighton, I'd probably get shot if I stood for election, if only for the reason that nobody would be able to shut me up. I'd probably die mid-rant, having declared that I would make Brighton & Hove the first English city twinned with Vatican City.
Bertrand Russell, polemicist, atheist philosopher and author of 'The Pursuit of Happiness'
The atheist is concerned primarily with what will make him happy. He is concerned with his happiness and finds but a fraction of it.
The Christian is primarily concerned with what will make God happy. She is concerned with His Happiness and finds it in its fullness.
Blessed Teresa of Calcutta
Thursday, 25 February 2010
Gerald Warner has written an excellent post on Keith Starmer's announcement on the subtle difference between 'mercy killing' and 'assisted suicide' on 'wholly compassionate grounds'. He also notes that Gordon Brown gets to say one thing on the dangers of assisted suicide in public, while the Director of Public Prosecutions takes the flak and gets his hands dirty. Clever, clever, Gordon. Mr Brown apparently claimed that it was Tony Blair who ruined his life and said so to his face. That may or may not be true but that is no reason to take it out on us.
Murder, like beauty, is now in the eye of the beholder and Parliament hasn't even voted on the matter. One man's 'assister of suicide' or even 'murderer' is another man's 'fighter for the right to die'. Doesn't it make you proud to see Britain at the forefront of the suicide cult that secular atheism promotes and the twin of tyranny which comes from its adoption as the State religion?
The Telegraph reports that...
'The guidelines published today make clear that anyone assisting suicide who benefits from the death is unlikely to be prosecuted as long as compassion was the "driving force" behind their actions.'
Compassion was the "driving force" for Blessed Teresa of Calcutta and I don't remember her injecting a lethal cocktail of drugs into the terminally sick and dying back then or smothering the dying with pillows. I guess God was her safeguard in that matter. After all, He desires 'mercy', not 'sacrifice'.
The BBC reports...
Director of Public Prosecutions, Keir Starmer, said whether a person acted "wholly compassionately" and not for financial reasons was important. But he made it clear the advice does not represent a change in the law and does not cover so-called mercy killing.
We are truly a nation in freefall. Many will die as a result of this 'clarification' since the waters have been significantly muddied on what constitutes assisted suicide and what constitutes a great work of charity for your neighbour by means of killing them. I am quite sure, for instance, that if the whole family wants Grandma's estate then parents could convince the children to keep schtum and promise them an X-Box, while Grandma, the only other eye witness to murder is conveniently placed six foot under the ground.
Many responsible for murder shall in future be seen as 'compassionate'. That is the kind of age in which we are living. The idea that the vulnerable will not be bumped off, or even starved to death, by their 'loving' relatives is fantasy. For evidence of this, read this and for yet more evidence that the Bishops Conference of England and Wales do not comprehend the gravity of the situation in our country, see this. Our Bishops are so timid in defending Christ and His Church, even the innocent unborn, so relativistic in their teaching, that I am beginning to wonder whether the masonic infiltration of the 1960s was a little more serious than at first thought.
I've been posting some of my articles onto Facebook and have upset three or four people over the past week or two. I count two or three of them as friends. In particular, my article on the LGBT student MPs Question Time has ruffled some feathers.
"You are one very f**ked up, twisted individual Laurence England, I'm pretty sure that most Catholics don't all feel the same bitter and warped way about things as you do. You are a particularly bad advertisement for the Catholic Faith...and I agree with Roisin, you are inciting hatred...This is the second time that I've noticed you spouting nonsense on here - which may just be your views but are in my opinion offensive and potentially harmful (if any one that read this shit actually took it seriously)." Jo, Brighton
"Laurence, as far as I can see you are inciting hatred. Tell me if I am wrong but I am not sure inciting hatred towards any group as ever been recognised a part of any Christian faith? In fact, being from a Catholic family and having being brought in a Catholic community, having attended only Catholic schools, I would say that the majority of Catholics I know, practising or not would find your views abhorent and would be insulted that you are attempting to represent them as their own or as the views of the majority. I think you should think very carefully before claiming to speak on behalf of others, in particular when inciting intolerance or hatred to others." Roisin, London.
Brother, sister, if you can find a quote in that article which genuinely 'incites hatred', rather than states an opinion on how our MPs curry favour with one or two political lobbying groups, at the expense of the Church or even the nation's human life and human freedom, then I will hand myself over to the police for committing hate speech. I'll even do public penance and stand in Churchill Square with a replica hook on my hand. Yet, you will not find anything in that article that 'incites hatred'.
I speak as one who is witnessing the State usurping the right to religious liberty in Catholic schools, nicking the Church's children and indoctrinating them with propaganda regarding sex, sexuality and abortion. I speak as one who is only too aware that the State usurped the right to life of the unborn child through the Abortion Act of 1967.
The Catholic Church now enjoys the status of the 'persecuted minority' in this country, so why attack Her, or even me, a poor sinner ever in need of God's mercy? I have only expressed frustration that our elected officials listen to some campaigning groups, but not others. I can tell you now, brother, sister, that if the Government or prominent elected officials courted with such enthusiasm, the Catholic Church, or campaigned with as much effectiveness on Her behalf, the United Kingdom would be revolt, as the public would not put up with a 'papist' State.
All the Catholic Church wishes to see, ironically, is 'equality' and freedom to proclaim the Gospel. You'll forgive me I'm sure, when I suggest that the expression of that very freedom is what has prompted your anger. There is, as readers will see, far more hatred incited in your words, than in mine.
Aaron Russo's shocking interview about the power and influence of the Rockerfeller family and their 'associates' worldwide. It is directly relevant today, even to current legislation, even here in the UK, perhaps. Russo was producer of the film, 'Trading Places', starring Dan Ackroyd and Eddie Murphy and the excellent Denholm Elliot about a couple of elite bankers who make a bet on whether they can make Eddie Murphy, a black beggar, rich, and do the job of Dan Ackroyd in financial speculation, and make Dan Ackroyd poor and turn to crime, the debate between the two bankers being based on whether success is 'nature or nurture'. The film happens to be my favourite movie of all time. Ironically, the World Trade Centre, at the heart of which is the subject of this interview, is in the background of the opening scene of this final clip in the movie.
Aaron Russo died of bladder cancer at the age of 65, shortly after he made the movie, 'America: Freedom to Fascism' and here is part one below.
'America: Freedom to Fascism' is a 2006 film by Aaron Russo, which alleges among a variety of claims that income tax is constitutionally illegal.
According to Wikipedia,
'This documentary covers many subjects, including: the Internal Revenue Service (IRS), the income tax, Federal Reserve System, national ID cards (REAL ID Act), human-implanted RFID tags (Spychips), Diebold electronic voting machines, globalization, Big Brother, taser weapons abuse, and the alleged use of terrorism by government as a means to diminish the citizens' rights. The film's claims about the illegality of the income tax in the United States have been critiqued as factually incorrect by some reviewers. The film has, however, developed a strong following.'
The 11-part documentary looks very interesting indeed. If he had lived he would have been a very dangerous man to the US Government and to those who influence it. I am sure plenty of people in positions of power are relieved that he is no longer with us. May he rest in peace.
America: Freedom to Fascism
Part 2, Part 3, Part 4, Part 5, Part 6, Part 7, Part 8, Part 9, Part 10, Part 11
He is the only Light in our darkness. He is the only Light in the darkness that now threatens to overshadow the Church and Her schools.
Today the Holy Father, Pope Benedict XVI made comments during his "lectio divina" delivered to the parish priests of Rome, upon receiving them in audience at the Vatican on February 18th 2010.
Courtesy of Zenit, the following words from the Holy Father are particular apt to the crisis now facing the Church in Her efforts to teach children the Most Holy Faith.
"Jesus offered up prayers and supplications, with loud cries and tears" (Heb 5: 7). This is not only a reference to the hour of anguish on the Mount of Olives but sums up the whole history of the Passion that embraces Jesus' entire life. Tears: Jesus wept by the tomb of Lazarus, he was truly moved inwardly by the mystery of death, by the terror of death. People forgive the brother, as in this case, the mother and the son, the friend: all the dreadfulness of death that destroys love, that destroys relationships, that is a sign of our finiteness, our poverty. Jesus is put to the test and he confronts this mystery in the very depths of his soul in the sorrow that is death and weeps. He weeps before Jerusalem, seeing the destruction of the beautiful city because of disobedience; he weeps, seeing all the destruction of the world's history; he weeps, seeing that people destroy themselves and their cities with violence and with disobedience.
Jesus weeps with loud cries. We know from the Gospels that Jesus cried out from the Cross: "My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?" (Mk 15:34; cf. Mt 27:46) and cried out once again at the end. And this cry responds to a fundamental dimension of the Psalm: in the terrible moments of human life many Psalms are a loud cry to God: "Help us, hear us!".
On this very day, in the Breviary, we prayed like this: God, where are you? "You have made us like sheep for slaughter" (Ps 44: 11 [rsv]). A cry of suffering humanity! And Jesus, who is the true subject of the Psalms, truly bears this cry of humanity to God, to God's ears: "help us and hear us!". He transforms the whole of suffering humanity, taking it to himself in a cry to God to hear him.
Thus we see that in this very way he brings about the priesthood, the function of mediator, bearing in himself, taking on in himself the sufferings and passion of the world, transforming it into a cry to God, bringing it before the eyes and to the hands of God and thus truly bringing it to the moment of redemption.
In fact the Letter to the Hebrews says that "he offered up prayers and supplications", "loud cries and tears" (5: 7). It is a correct translation of the verb prosphèrein. This is a religious word and expresses the act of offering human gifts to God, it expresses precisely the act of offering, of sacrifice. Thus with these religious terms applied to the prayers and tears of Christ, it shows that Christ's tears, his anguish on the Mount of Olives, his cry on the Cross, all his suffering are nothing in comparison with his important mission. In this very way he makes his sacrifice, he becomes the priest. With this "offered", prosphèrein, the Letter to the Hebrews says to us: this is the fulfilment of his priesthood, thus he brings humanity to God, in this way he becomes mediator, he becomes priest.
Those of us who care deeply about Holy Mother Church now share in His Passion as it appears that evil will triumph. In Christ we have a model. We should cry out to God with tears and pleading not only for His Justice to prevail in this matter, but for mercy for those who are responsible for the crucifixion of schools with a solemn duty to educate children in the Faith of Christ. Make no mistake, Truth was crucified yesterday. Freedom was crucified yesterday. The Church was crucified yesterday. We must raise the alarm and call upon our leaders to fight hard for the Faith, but also, we must offer our suffering to God and all along pray for those who persecute us.
The days are coming when we shall no longer be able to boast of our Catholic schools, whether they achieve academic excellence or not, for what is knowledge and worldly success if the voice of Truth and Love is made the voice in the wilderness?
There is one thing alone of which we can all boast; we can boast of our humiliations (2 Cor. 12:15) and in taking up daily the holy cross of our Lord Jesus Christ ~ St Francis of Assisi
Wednesday, 24 February 2010
There is so much to be depressed about at the moment in the light of recent news that the Government has stolen the Church's children and started teaching them sodomy, wanking, baby-killing and promiscuity, so I thought I'd post this Don McLean song to cheer us all up. Oh no! It's called Starry Starry Night and its about a man called Vincent! Oh no...Now...now, I'm depressed again!
Hot off the pink press. Hang on, I thought Matthew Parris worked for The Times...
I was dropping a friend off at a chemists today when I noticed in St James's Street, the street which hosts a big parade on Gay Pride Day in Brighton, that the Pink Paper is hosting a student event in Brighton on 6th March 2010, 4.30 - 6pm at Oceana, a large nightclub off West Street.
I could make out faces but not names in the poster of the shop window of MPs. It looks like Brighton's gay student community and those leading them will be able to ask a select few of our MPs questions on how well their elected representatives are furthering the LGBT cause. From LGBT Greens website, a PDF is available for you to view the seemingly massive event of 'the fifth National Student Pride in association with the NUS LGBT Campaign and hosted by the Universities of Brighton & Sussex, celebrating diversity at university.'
If you thought that the LGBT agenda of 'social change' started at the workplace, or even started at University you'd be very much mistaken. An explicitly, overtly aggressive, political agenda is now clearly marked indelibly like a stick of Brighton rock from primary school through to academia. It is prevalent at all major institutions and major employers, from local county councils to large private corporations.
According to their snazzy brochure...
'National Student Pride 2009 was a huge success and was covered by all the gay press, the BBC and the Independent (I love the way the BBC and the Independent are named alongside the term, 'gay press', seemingly almost 'inclusively'). Over 1,500 students travelled from all over the country, with as many as 3 Scottish Universities represented and a whole host of celebrities, journalists & MP’s. Moving the event to a Saturday for 2010 will further increase the success and reach students from all over the UK.'
We are pleased to be able to invite you (What? Me? Oh, how fabulous, darling!) to speak alongside other notable guests on our Question Time Panel at National Student Pride 2010 to an audience of students from all over the UK and the gay and national media.
This year we are pleased to welcome our 2009 panellist, Dan Gillespie Sells as our Patron and our panel Chair from 2009, The President of NUS, Wes Streeting, as our Honorary President.
Thank you for taking the time to read this document and I do hope you are available in March.
In Pride (rather than 'In Christ', obviously...)
Chair National Student Pride • firstname.lastname@example.org • t: 07861226906
So, just in case you were wondering who our MPs enjoy meeting and discussing politics with, there is a little clue. Why is it, I wonder, that the Catholic Church, or Christian churches in general, or the blandly-titled 'faith communities' seem to enjoy less favour with our elected officials? When I find out the names of the MPs involved I will let you know. I think the poster in the shop as gay as a window mentioned something about Peter Tatchell possibly being a 'TBC' speaker as well. Now there's a surprise. No doubt he'll get a standing ovation for his latest victory over 'intolerance' and his joy at CES having bowed down to the goddess Diversity, too long shall she reign over us.
If our MPs gave this much time, tender love and affection to the Legion of Mary, I think the press would be up in arms. Is it me, or is the whole gay political movement so entrenched, militant and so very, very influential and powerful in modern British politics, that democracy itself has now actually been subverted? I guess if we want to know the answer to that question, a quick glance at the posts below will suffice. Let us not be bashful here, Stonewall has this country by the 'Balls'. There's no conspiracy here, of course, just years of political lobbying finally paying dividends with the gay movement's endgame of having access to the minds of all the nations' children, including the Catholic ones, coming to fruition.
The other great lobbying power with the aim of silencing and crushing the influence of Holy Mother Church, of course, is Marie Stopes International, the arch eugenicist's group who managed to swing Parliament around to the Abortion Act (1967) and influence Parliament over every vote on matters of life and death ever since. Parliament is corrupt. We knew that anyway, didn't we? I am, however, getting pretty sick of politicians trying to convince the nation that everything they are doing is for the good of the nation's children or even for their sexual health and well-being.
Our politicians are essentially door to door salesmen, who, let's face it, are almost always conmen and women. They don't work for us, neither do they speak for us and they certainly won't repay us for our vote as the last decade has taught us only too well. The last 48 hours have shown us once again that our MPs work very hard for two organisations intent on a 'new social order'. Those two organisations are Marie Stopes International and Stonewall. Well funded organisations, I hear, but then, hey, so is Parliament...
By what authority does Parliament have to tell the Holy Church how to teach children on matters of faith and morals?
They have no authority whatsoever to do so, since the Authority to teach all nations has been given by Christ to His One, Holy, Catholic and Apostolic Church.
From now on, we Catholics are going to have to either accept the new consensus that the State is God, or defend the Truth. The Gates of Hell, even the Gates of Hell which Gordon Brown is said to have opened upon Alaistair Darling, shall never prevail against the Church built upon the Rock of St Peter!
Tuesday, 23 February 2010
The Catholic hierarchy's 'negotiations' with the present Labour Government are akin to the Chamberlain's 'appeasement' of Hitler.
It didn't work then. It won't work now.
Give these fascists and inch and they will invade, bringing with them their murderous ideology, their fanaticism, their hatred for all that is sacred and holy and their Culture of Death.
Discuss...if, indeed there is anything to discuss...
Yep...thought our amoral MPs would go with it. Still, given those spineless expenses fraudsters have no problem with ripping off the taxpayer, what ever made us think they'd have a problem ripping out of the heart of our Catholic schools and handing the nation's children to Stonewall and Marie Stopes.
The amendment to the Destruction of Children, Schools and Families Bill was passed by a majority of 345 in the Commons. The full, 'amended', bill was passed by a Commons majority of 91 and now goes to the House of Lords.
At least, according to Damian Thompson, Edinburgh Cardinal Keith O'Brien is not afraid to tell it as it really is.
Meanwhile, this Times article, revealing the embarassing and much fore-warned failure of the Government's multi-million pound strategy to combat teen pregnancy over the past ten years, suggests we can expect more of the same. That is, more abortions, more teenage pregnancy, more sexually active children, and, when this latest effort to 'educate' children in sex and relationships has failed, more sex and relationships legislation in the future.
Still, at least Stonewall and Marie Stopes clinics will be breaking open the champagne tonight, their expensive lobbying having paid dividends. Enjoy it while it lasts guys and drink it down to the dregs, for the true Victory shall be Eternal.
A footballer and a pop singer, married for 3 and a half years are separating.
The news that singer Cheryl Cole is to separate from footballer Ashley Cole has sent shockwaves through the country.
Candlelit vigils are being held for the couple across the country as the public waits in anticipation for the next statement from publicity guru, Max Clifford.
One man, living in Bermondsey said, "I can hardly believe it. To me, he was, like, an unprincipled, money obsessed Chelsea footballer who was lured away from Arsenal with a massive pile of cash by a Russian oil tycoon and she, well, she was a singer in a girl band who had a couple of solo hits. I'm devastated. After the economic recession, the seemingly endless wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, the earthquake in Haiti and more recently, the floods in Madeira, this is just the kind of terrible, apocalyptically earth-shattering news that will send some people over the edge. My only consolation is that Max Clifford will make more money off the back of this celebrity nightmare."
...oh no! Unfortunately, I can't currently afford to pay my car tax, so my car is at risk of this. My only hope is that I am not in the car when it happens. But, whatever they tell you, remember, the Government are not bullies. The Government are not bullies. The Government are not bullies. Say it like a mantra and it becomes true, just like the 'sex education plan is not a threat to Catholic schools' mantra. Try it, it works. The mantra worked on our Bishops, well enough, didn't it?
The Rt Rev Bishop Malcolm McMahon, current Chairman of the CES, with his predecessor, Archbishop of England and Wales, the Most Rev Vincent Nichols.
Re: Today's proposed Sex Education legislation in the House of Commons
I wish to express to you my horror at what is happening today in the House of Commons.
I am astonished by the lack of Catholic speakers, especially those charged with the protection of our Catholic schools, in the media, standing up to the increasingly secular Government's desire to strip Catholic schools of their Catholic identity.
I find it incredible that you, my Lord, as Bishop in charge with the protection of Catholic Education, are not appearing in as many media outlets as possible, in order to condemn today's Labour legislation for proposed sex education in primary and secondary schools and, also, that you have not appeared to condemn the refusal of the Government to allow Catholic Schools to teach the Catholic Faith unhindered by the appallingly relativistic beliefs of the Labour Government.
It appears to me that the Catholic Education Service [CES] have colluded with the Government in the formulation of these plans and have abjectly failed to secure any real protection for Catholic schools in the Government's plan to have all schools regarding the teaching of homosexuality, the 'option' of abortion, 'access' to abortion, contraception and civil partnerships.
If this is so, then most assuredly those who have colluded with the Government in destroying the future faith and purity of our Catholic children now and in years to come, will surely have to answer to the Court of Heaven. Such a Tribunal on matters of such extreme importance to the future of the Catholic faith would surely have those souls who have acquiesced trembling in dread.
Please can you clarify to me, my Lord, your position on this most urgent and pressing of matters and reassure me that you will vociferously campaign against this Government's latest attack on the One, Holy, Catholic and Apostolic Church and, more disgracefully, Her children, when the outcome of this repulsive legislation is known.
I remain your humble and obedient servant.
If you would like to use this as a template then you are most welcome.
Would you let this man near your children, let alone the unborn children of your children?
Children's Secretary Ed Balls has denied plans for compulsory sex education in England's schools have been watered down.
But an amendment to a government bill gives faith schools more freedom to tailor teaching to their own beliefs.
Pressure groups claim this amendment would allow faith schools to ignore requirements in the bill to teach it in a balanced way, respecting diversity.
The government has denied it could result in a rise in homophobia.
Mr Balls dismissed suggestions the amendment to the Children, Schools and Families Bill, which was first revealed by the BBC News Website, represented an "opt out" for faith schools.
He told the Today programme: "A Catholic faith school can say to their pupils we believe as a religion contraception is wrong but what they can't do is therefore say that they are not going to teach them about contraception to children and how to access contraception.
"What this changes is that for the first time these schools cannot just ignore these issues or teach only one side of the argument.
"They also have to teach that there are different views on homosexuality. They cannot teach homophobia. They must explain civil partnership."
Full story click here.
I have little doubt that this sorry excuse for a bill will get passed. MPs do not speak on behalf of the British public, let alone faith schools. This Government is one that has long rode roughshod over the opinions of the public. Meanwhile, our Bishops have hardly been actively vociferous. The CES has colluded with the Government and the Bishop charged with the duty of protecting Catholic Schools is silent. What he has said, recently, is hardly encouraging. Today, on the very day of the Bill's reading, not one has put his mitred head above the parapet and sounded the call for action to campaign against this vile Government's plan. Ed Balls, in case you were wondering, is minister for the Department for the Destruction of Children, Families and Schools.
If this Bill is passed, may I make a few suggestions to those in education who are genuinely concerned about the content of the legislation and what they will be asked to teach.
There is the option of field trips. As part of the RE class, I see no reason why schools should not take a field trip to the local abortion clinic where children can pray the Rosary and hold placards saying, "I've only come here today because mummy never did." Schools could be given a guided tour of an abortion clinic and be given a full run down of what occurs during an abortion, or even be shown the aborted children who have been killed that week, laying in a clinical bin. The teaching objective could be: Children should understand the horror and depravity of abortion.
I don't know whether there are any similar lesson plans for contraception and civil partnerships, but it is important that the children understand why the Church stands against them.
Perhaps a pro-Life day every term in which children were taught about how abortion and widescale promotion of contraception and sterilisation were 'born' out of the eugenics movement which preceeded the Nazis and continued after them. Who knows, it could even be taught in history, the links are so concrete.
Lesson objective 1: That the children understand that Marie Stopes was a devotee of Adolf Hitler who proposed contraception and sterilisation as a way of killing off the poor.
Lesson objective 2: That the children learn that her organisation, Marie Stopes International, still exists today and offers contraception and abortion for the same reasons as it did when it started, namely that she was a massive Nazi.
After this, the children will be fully prepared to spend an hour after the lesson cutting up condoms, sticking them to paper planes and throwing them at an image of Ed Balls on the classroom wall. They'll enjoy it! For lessons on homosexuality we have a rich resource of contributors to the debate. How's about this lesson: 'Learning about homosexuality with St Paul and St Jude.'
Any thoughts on other ways to teach these Government lessons?
Meanwhile, Damian Thompson is doing good work at raising awareness of the appalling Eddie Testicles and the equally appalling silence of those to whom we look for leadership within the Church.
Anyway, if the Government is successful in its latest onslaught on religious liberty at least Catholic schools won't have to teach the lesson, 'What does Hell look like?' After all, the Government will already have unleashed it upon the nation's poor and unsuspecting children.
Here is the website of the Bishops Conference of England and Wales. I don't see anything about the proposed legislation. The scandal appears to be news to them. Perhaps they're not reading the papers. Below is the email of Bishop Malcolm McMahon's secretary.
Monday, 22 February 2010
We need our Priests to bring mules into Church following a Novena to St Anthony so that we all may know that times have not changed. Christ is as truly present in the Eucharist today as He was in the 11th century. Jesus Christ, the same yesterday, today, tomorrow and forever!
"So, Ed, basically, you should crush them. You grab them by the necks like so and..."
Gordon Brown instructs Ed Balls in the appropriate course of action for faith schools who disobey the proposed sex education plans once they've been approved by MPs who've been warned of the same fate if they disobey the whip.
Time and time again, from the Blair years, to the Brown years, Labour have proved themselves to be bullies in the 'workplace' and towards us, the people of Britain. From full body scanners, to streets crammed with cameras, to the smoking ban, to the wars which the majority were against. Labour are bullies and the only way you face down a bully is by standing up to him...even if he is your 'Big Brother'.
Please email or telephone your MP immmediately to urge him/her to:
- sign and support amendments 2 and 60, tabled by the Conservative opposition for report-stage, and
- vote against the bill as a whole at third reading. Please read SPUC's latest campaign alert for more information and please act straight away.
Fr Timothy Finigan, founder of the Association of Priests for the Gospel of Life (APGL) condemned the government's so-called assurances as:
"woolly language designed to hide a totalitarian agenda ... The relativism of Ed Balls and his friends who are setting the agenda for secular Britain is actually only applied to the "views" they disagree with, such as Catholic moral teaching on the sanctity of life, marriage, and the procreation of children ... Ed Balls and the DCSF have expertly exploited the weakness of the Catholic Church in England and Wales in its witness to the teaching of the magisterium. The constant support of the CES for its legislation, and the availability of examples such as the school described, enable the Government to take credit for preserving Catholic schools while effectively outlawing Catholic moral teaching in those schools."Fr Marcus Holden, the co-founder of the (pro-life/pro-family) Evangelium project:
"Having consulted several influential priests and education experts, it seems to me that such laws, if introduced, may spell the end of official Catholic schools in state aided education. What most concerns me, however, is the unethical imposition of a sexual ideology upon our children and their families."Fr John Boyle of Ashford, Kent:
"I am afraid I have given up on the CES""E F Pastor Emeritus", a priest of Southwark archdiocese:
"[C]ommitted Catholics should refuse to contribute anything to the CES collection".Mac McLernon, a Catholic teacher:
"The Catholic Education Service is a complete disgrace ... And, once again, SPUC has done a first class job of debunking the latest attempts of the CES to claim credit for getting the Government to back down on the CSF Bill ... [T]he CES...appears to be nothing more than a mouthpiece for the latest Government education policy."I think these reactions speak volumes about who really speaks for Catholic pro-life/pro-family teaching in England and Wales.
Sunday, 21 February 2010
Courtesy of The Guardian
'Airport security chiefs may have thought they had enough to worry about with shoe bombers, underpants bombers and people who forget to put their toothpaste into those little plastic bags. But, if so, they were reckoning without Benedict XVI.
At a meeting in the Vatican at the weekend, the pope made an authoritative – if entirely unexpected – incursion into the raging debate over the planned use of airport body scanners. He told an audience from the aerospace industry that, notwithstanding the threat from terrorism, "the primary asset to be safeguarded and treasured is the person, in his or her integrity".
Respect for the principles he enunciated "might seem particularly complex and difficult in the present context", he told his audience, which included airport managers, airline executives, security workers, pilots, cabin and ground staff.
They had to contend with problems arising "from the economic crisis, which is bringing about problematic effects in the civil aviation sector, and the threat of international terrorism, which is targeting airports and aircraft". But, he warned: "It is essential never to lose sight of respect for the primacy of the person."
The pope's words will delight civil liberties campaigners opposed to a device that strips passengers virtually naked. But those involved in airport security will no doubt point out that, when he himself travels — on Alitalia – the pope and his entourage are simply waved through security controls.
An exception was in 1984 when a permanently installed detection mechanism in Luxembourg alerted security officials to the fact that John Paul II and his aides were packing significant quantities of metal. It had been activated by their crosses.
Saturday, 20 February 2010
Army veterans line up on parade on Brighton's seafront in mid-winter. Is not our veterans' service to this country worthy of better treatment than this? Story courtesy of Henry Law of 'An Outside View'.
'These homeless men sleeping out under the promenade at Brighton are all ex-soldiers of various ages. They have served in places like Northern Ireland, the Falklands, and the Gulf. Once they left the army they found it impossible to settle into civilian life and ended up homeless. They have a drink problem but clean up as best they can afterwards. They are probably "institutionalised".
A significant proportion of homeless men are ex-servicemen. The official attitude seems to be that they are no longer of use and can be discarded. I think the problem is that the sort of accommodation that would be right for them simply does not exist. I get the impression that they would not get on well in, for instance, a bed-sit flat, which is what they would probably get offered, after which they would be forgotten about as a solved case. These men need a structured environment, where ex-servicemen can live in a protected community, under firm direction
What might be done? In the seventeenth century, Chelsea Hospital was founded for just this purpose. Isn't there a need for similar institutions today? I have in mind large houses with 15 to 20 rooms and communal facilities such as a dining room, lounge, games and hobbies rooms, and a gymnasium run by a well-organised retired sergeant type who was kind, sympathetic but firm.
Residents in the kind of establishment I envisage would be expected if possible to help in the running of the establishment by taking turns with household tasks like cooking and cleaning, painting, decorating and household tasks. To judge from the way they conduct themselves, most of them would be well able to do such things as a product of their army training.
In such an environment, some of them at least might be able to give up their alcohol habits and possibly hold down regular work and become valuable members of their local communities.
This is really something that the government should take on as part of a duty of care to those who choose to risk their lives to defend the country, but if it will not, there is a need for a new charitable foundation. It would undoubtedly qualify for Royal patronage and enjoy huge public support.
Come on, you tabloids, speak up for our brave boys after their military usefulness is past.'
Perhaps Prince Harry, who enjoyed his service in Afghanistan would be interested in hearing about how our veterans are treated with such contempt after their service in Her Majesty's Armed Forces.
Perhaps Prince William, who has recently been raising the profile of homeless charity Crisis, would be interested in hearing about the disgusting way in which our servicemen are discarded by Government and society after putting their lives on the line for Queen and country.
Rest assured, these men, who sleep under the subway of Brighton beach will have their story told as soon as possible. It is a national scandal that men who have risked life and limb for the people this country should then be tossed aside like rubbish into the gutter. It says everything you want to know about our 'throw-away' society and, indeed, our throw-away Government. It is highly likely that these men have tried to get accommodation from the Council, but don't have a 'local connection'. Who would have thought that their service in the armed forces would have prepared these brave soldiers, for this? More on this story surely to come...
An unborn child at 16 weeks
Courtesy of John Smeaton, SPUC Director and Damian Thompson
A government media release yesterday cites a Catholic school in Bedford as a good example of how faith schools should implement the government's plans for sex education. The media release says (my emphases in bold):
"St Thomas More is a mixed secondary school in Bedford. 60% of students are from a Catholic/Christian background with 40% from a range of ethnic minority groups, including Muslim. It has achieved Healthy Schools Status and has an Outstanding Award for cultural diversity.I will be writing to St Thomas More school, asking them to confirm or deny the government's claims about what is happening in its school. Readers of this blog may also like to write to the school at: Tyne Crescent, Bedfordshire MK41 7UL email@example.com If, however, the government's claims are proved to be true, then what is being taught is entirely contrary to Catholic pro-life and pro-family teaching:
"St Thomas More delivers SRE [sex and relationships education] through the pastoral programme in conjunction with the RE syllabus. It is led by pastoral tutors, all of whom are well prepared and confident to lead discussion with students across a wide range of SRE issues.
"The school has developed a very successful balance of providing students with accurate information within the faith ethos of the school. For example, sex within marriage is promoted as the ideal of the Catholic faith, but the school explicitly recognises the reality that some young people may choose to be sexually active and, if that is the case, they need the knowledge and confidence to make an informed choice to protect themselves from pregnancy and STIs.
"The school nurse provides students with clear accurate information about the full range of contraception and STIs and details of local services. Chlamydia screening is also offered to students in Years 11 to 13. Pregnancy options, including abortion, are also discussed in a non-judgemental way with the RE syllabus requiring students to understand the spectrum of pro- and anti-choice views on abortion. By combining the pastoral and RE teaching, the essential knowledge component of SRE is provided to students but within the context of relationships and the school's values."
- Catholic education on sexual matters should not be taught according to some arbitrary notion of "balance", let alone the government's anti-life false idea of "balance". Such education should be according to the truth and meaning of human sexuality (specifically according to the Vatican document of the same name)
- sex within marriage only is not simply an "ideal of the Catholic faith" but an absolute requirement of morality as taught by the Catholic Church. The Catechism of the Catholic Church teaches (para. 2353):
"Fornication...is gravely contrary to the dignity of persons and of human sexuality which is naturally ordered to the good of spouses and the generation and education of children. Moreover, it is a grave scandal when there is corruption of the young."
- Catholics may not, under any circumstances or for any reason, "choose" contraception, as is abundantly clear from 2,000 years of constant church teaching. For a Catholic school to "inform" children with "knowledge" to "choose" from "the full range of contraception" is like teaching children how to lessen the chances of getting caught by the police if they "choose" to rob a bank.
- Contraception does not "protect" against pregnancy or STIs. To use contraception is to play Russian roulette with pregnancy and STIs - the more one uses it, the more likely those things are to happen.
- "The full range of contraception" includes drugs and devices that not only prevent pregnancy, but may, according to the manufacturers, kill newly-conceived embryonic children.
- Local "services" providing contraception will either provide, or refer schoolgirls for, abortions.
- "Non-judgmental" "discussions" of "pregnancy options, including abortion" means that the school abandons moral responsibility for its pupils by leaving them free to accept the killing of innocent members of the human family. This model of non-teaching is the "values clarification" method designed to destroy any notion of right and wrong children might have.
Friday, 19 February 2010
The Council are reportedly concerned that the Soup Run is 'part of the problem of homelessness, rather than the solution'. I wonder what the Council's 'solution' is.
I served at the Traditional Latin Mass tonight and went after to an 'extraodinary' meeting of another 'form'. The volunteers on the soup run at the Peace Statue met together for what I had assumed was a general chat about feeding the hungry. It was nothing of the sort. The meeting might just have been called, 'Guidelines on how to kowtow to the Council.'
A volunteer for a soup run at the other end of town gave us a talk. He dictated the entire discussion from beginning to end. He began the meeting by suggesting that 'complaints' had been made to the Council. When challenged over what the content of these complaints were, he then asserted that no formal complaint had been made. 'There is a general perception,' he said, 'that the soup run is a part of the problem of homelessness in Brighton, rather than the solution.'
I could not believe my ears. For a start, that a Council which does next to nothing for the homeless of Brighton and Hove have the utter, shameless audacity to dictate to the soup run volunteers on matters of 'health and safety', guidelines or even hygiene is a grotesque insult to both the homeless and the volunteers of the soup run. Secondly, soup run volunteers are not children who need to be told to wash their hands before making a sandwich and ensure their hands are clean when they give sandwiches out. We learned that when we were children! Unfortunately, the whole tone of this volunteer's talk was totally patronising, which, even if his heart was in the right place in terms of warning us to beware of the Council, did him few favours.
He is the 'eyes and ears' of the soup run on a Council committee forum on the 'homelessness prevention team' or something. What I, and other volunteers became disturbed by was his councilspeak on homelessness. He described the poor and hungry who are fed by the soup run as 'clients' and 'customers'. A man next to me who has fed the homeless for 30 years and I looked at each other in disbelief, muttering 'Clients!?' and 'Customers!? WTF!?'
Because of his language, dominated, as it was, by health and safety executive doublespeak, few in the room were left wondering whether he was speaking on behalf of the soup run or on behalf of the Council. It was highly disconcerting. Is this what happens when someone joins a Council committee? In one breath he was reassuring us of his loyalty to the soup run and of his commitment to the homeless and in the other he was speaking as if he were working for housing benefits. Everybody gave him the benefit of the doubt that he was working primarily as a voice for the soup run on a council committee on homelessness prevention but nobody left the room thinking that his perception of both the soup run and the homeless had not been infected with the Council's ethos a little regarding the homeless. I left wondering if the Council had been infiltrated by a volunteer of the soup run or whether the soup run had been infiltrated by the Council. We were all reassured by him that he was on our side and there is, as yet, no reason to doubt his word.
We were thus encouraged, out of this man's charity, that in order to appease the Council's distrust of the soup run and of the very poor and destitute, that we must ensure that we are highly trained in what amounts to basic common courtesy in the making and distributing of sandwiches, because, basically, the soup run is not very popular with the Council (because it makes them look bad and reveals the extent of Brighton's homelessness while they claim there are only 7 homeless people) and all the Council need is one excuse to close us down. This is probably very true.
For this reason alone, many, myself included supported this volunteer's advice, even if most of it was common sense and some of it totally and utterly misguided and unrealistic.
Let it be known. The day that the Council close the soup run in Brighton because it is bad for Brighton's tourist image is the day in which the good people of Brighton (and there are quite a few of them) make a public outcry so big that national TV cameras are in Bartholomew Square. How dare this Council even, for one minute, try and dictate to soup run volunteers, through one of the volunteers on their committee, how to do the soup run or try to frighten us of its future?! It is well known that apart from telling the homeless that they belong in another town because they have no local connection, the Council do absolutely NOTHING for the homeless of Brighton and Hove. The Catholic Church is there feeding the hungry every night of the week, 52 weeks a year, while the Council workers wash their hands of the homeless every single day. What is more, they get paid for doing pretty much diddly squat. At least we do something concrete and guess what, we don't get any money. If anything we end up out of pocket every now and then!
Well, obviously, the volunteers will continue to use their common sense and distribute food to the hungry in a hygenic and sensible manner as we always have done. Heck! We might even use a notepad, as we were tonight urged, to count how many homeless we feed when we arrive and do a quick head count for whatever strange purpose is needed in that respect. We will not, however, most definitely not, take lessons on how to treat the homeless from a Council committee who do not give a flying one about the fate or sufferings of the very people for whom the Council is their first point of reference and from whom these very same people receive jack sh*t in terms of respect, compassion, housing or even food.
The day the Council fund the St Mary Magdalen Soup Run, is the day the soup run runs according to the Council's pleasure. The day the Council sends volunteers to the soup run is the day the soup run runs according to the Council's pleasure. The day the Council calls the Church and tells them they have decided to stand in the pissing rain and cold in winter and feed the homeless of Brighton, is the day in which the Church's mission to the poor is made redundant. That day will never come, of course, and so I will continue, as do so many volunteers in Brighton who left feeling insulted tonight, to feed the homeless come rain or shine.
And if the Council, one day, want to send the cops in to arrest the volunteers for feeding the hungry and dispossessed of Brighton because its bad for Brighton's image, then let them do that. I'd happily go to jail for that. Words cannot describe the ignorance of these Council busy bodies. Words cannot describe the corruption and wickedness of the Council. It is high time that those who are charged with the duty to care for and house those sleeping on the beach in Brighton are brought face to face with those who they neglect, with those they ignore, with those who they persecute, with those who they despise for no reason other than out of mere prejudice, suspicion, ignorance and fear! Health and safety!? Like the Council give a flying one about the 'health and safety' of the homeless of Brighton. Most of them wake up with their faces on the floor surrounded by piss every morning. Dear Brighton and Hove City Council. If you're really concerned about the 'health and safety' of the homeless of Brighton then house them and feed them!
'Customers', indeed! "Hi, you're our millionth 'customer' this decade. Congratulations! Have another sandwich!" Holy crap! What is happening to this country!?
Thursday, 18 February 2010
How strange. How very strange and sad. I just watched the local news and heard the shocking story that the founder of the Community Garden Project on Lewes Road, Brighton, has been found brutally stabbed to death at his home. Police say that 'a man in London has been arrested', who the victim, Gordon Stalker, 'might have known'.
The Argus, Brighton's local newspaper, on the other hand, have not reported, as yet, Gordon Stalker's role in the Community Garden Project which has attracted much attention in Brighton. Like London Road, Lewes Road is a bit grim. A group of 'guerilla' gardeners took over the derelict property, a forecourt of a disused petrol station which had become a derelict eyesore and turned it into a rather pretty community garden, loved by the local community and maintained by volunteers from Brighton. Okay, they are 'anarchists', but they are the kind of anarchists who you could take to see your Grandma and do her garden, probably for free.
So far, so Brighton. But here it gets murkier and darker. Gordon Stalker's role as founder of this Community Garden project has not attracted the attention of The Argus. They have also not reported his spearheading of the 'Say No to Tesco' campaign to have their efforts to build a new store on the very site that the gardeners have beautified, stopped in its tracks. The Argus have reported the story, which should really be headlined, 'Lewes Road Community Garden Project Founder Murdered', as this...
A man has been arrested on suspicion of stabbing a Brighton man to death. Detectives are today interviewing a 40-year old man who was arrested in London late last night.
The 40-year-old suspect is being questioned in connection with the death of Gordon Stalker, who was stabbed to death at his home in Elm Grove on Monday. Mr Stalker, 51, of Elm Grove, was found dead in the hallway of the address where he had lived for 16 years. A post mortem found he died as a result of multiple stab wounds to his chest and side.
That was this morning. Obviously, this is a big story, so it needed updating later in the day. After all, a pillar of the community of Lewes Road has been murdered. His community gardening project had attracted much local fame and publicity. What follows from The Argus, this evening, is this piece of impressive investigative journalism.
The family of murder victim Gordon Stalker thanked his friends for their tributes tonight. The 51-year-old died after he was stabbed several times at his home in Elm Grove, Brighton, on Monday.
A 40-year-old man was arrested last night and is being questioned over his death. A statement from Mr Stalker's family, released tonight, said: "Gordon was a much-loved son, brother and uncle.
"He spent his younger years with his family in Cumbria, before making his home in Brighton. Gordon was a popular, fun-loving man with many friends in the Brighton area. He loved his work in electronics, an interest he shared with his Dad. He will be greatly missed by the whole family, and also by his friends down in Brighton. We would like to thank all Gordon’s friends for their kind words and tribute messages that have been left on his Facebook account. This is obviously a very difficult time for us, and the circumstances of Gordon’s death are very difficult for us to understand."
May I offer my condolences and sympathy to the family of this inspiring man. I am sure, however, that they will forgive me when I say that he wasn't just a 'guy into electronics'. He was a leading member of the campaign against Tesco in Lewes Road and their bid to rob him and his friends of land they had made into a community garden. And, guess what? It appears that they already had.
On Tuesday 24th November 2009, The Argus reported that,
'Residents have reacted angrily to news a Tesco convenience store could replace a garden built by residents on a derelict petrol station. Rumours have circulated that the supermarket giant will move into a unit in a complex of two shops and seven flats due to be built at the site of the Lewes Road Community Garden, a former Esso at the corner of Lewes Road and Edinburgh Road [...] However Tesco yesterday refused to confirm or deny the rumours while the site's owners, Alburn Minos Development Ltd, have insisted no contracts have been signed for the units they will build, although they said they expect one to be a convenience store.'
Alburn Minos Developments Ltd are another one of those companies with no website or phone number. According to the Council, their contact address is 'c/o GMK Associates', whoever they are. Click here for a google image of their plush residence in Belfast and have a scroll around. Anyhow, I digress. Yet only four days previously, on 20th November 2009, the same publication had reported that...
'Belfast-based Alburn Minos Development Ltd has planning permission to build two ground floor shops and seven first and second floor apartments and has signalled its intention to start work.'
Hmm...Mis-reporting rife in The Argus? Or press releases getting out a little too early? Rough Music, a local free community 4-page newspaper, reported very recently in their most recent issue...
'Having got wind of the rumour that Tesco was the supermarket involved, one canny guerilla gardener phoned the company to ask if any jobs were coming up, to be told - yep, on Lewes Road. '
Murdered: Gordon Stalker, Founder of Lewes Road Community Garden Project. Rest in Peace.
Who gives companies planning permission? That's right, Brighton and Hove City Council Planning Department, who clearly gave the all clear to this firm, without too much consultation.
Let us be honest here. One of these two publications, out of Rough Music and The Argus, is a publication interested in the community of Brighton and Hove. One of them, most certainly, is not. I'm not saying, of course, that Gordon Stalker was killed by a hitman hired by Tesco. Such a wild accusation would be unfounded. I'm just saying that something doesn't feel right about his mysterious murder and The Argus are not reporting the full story on the horrendous killing of a man who stood up against a big corporation whose greed, as we all know, knows no bounds.
You can sign a petition against this new Tesco development here. Whoever killed Gordon Stalker, I think we can be safe in saying that the 'Say No to Tesco on the Lewes Road' campaign will have been left shaken by this murder and may even be fearful in considering their continued opposition to the food giant to whom 'no' is just not an acceptable answer. For those town planners amongst you, here is the planning decision by the Council in full.
Tuesday, 16 February 2010
In light of today's news, the BBC is giving licence payers a special discounted offer to any British citizen whose loved ones need to be sent off into the land of nod on a permanent basis. These delightful musical pillows play your favourite lullabies so you can end the suffering of your loved one* and help them to relax on the way to their Maker.
*The BBC accept no responsibility for the blatant bias of the pro-euthanasia and assisted suicide content of their programming or for any deaths caused as a result of its embarrassingly transparent propaganda in the national assisted suicide 'debate'.
Hellmann's Mayonnaise. So named because it drags the souls of men into Hell.
Tomorrow is Ash Wednesday, marking the beginning of Lent. The purgatorial bootcamp which characterises this holy season in the Church is a time for offenders young and old to renounce our sinful attachments (pictured above is just one of mine, one acceptable to be mentioned publicly, that is), to draw closer to God, to frequent the Sacrament of Reconciliation and do penance and to engage in works of mercy in reparation for our sins.
Pickled gherkins and cucumbers. So addicted I stole them from my parish priest's fridge.
It is a time of less hot showers than usual, if like me, you just can't do cold ones. It is a time of getting up before 11 in the morning. It is a time for pithy blogposts, not lengthy rants. It is a time when I could actually say my morning prayers. It is a time to cut down on spending money on guilty pleasures, only to give this money to the Council when I realise the extent of my parking fine debt.
I'll try to give up smoking again, of course, and other solitary vices but some things are just not realistic. Still, all things are possible to God. One day at a time...
One of my big ideas is to stop consuming these products for Lent...and start making them! I now have about 25 jars ready to be filled with apple chutney, pickled cucumbers/gherkins, tomato ketchup and mayonnaise.