Saturday 28 August 2010

Hyde Park Entertainment Masks a Church Embarrassed by Catholicism

I've read the 'Liturgies and Events' guide book produced by the Bishops Conference and it is thoroughly depressing.

For the 'gathering' prior to Benediction of the Blessed Sacrament in the presence of the Holy Father there is a, 'variety of groups [...] showing a rich diversity of styles and traditions which are all part of the Catholic community in England and Wales.'

There is RISEtheatre!, there is the Larondina Dance Group, More than Dance, the Zywiec Folk Song and Dance Group, the Doherty Academy (not to be confused with Pete Doherty's band) and Brooks Academy. Look all these guys up for a full round up of what we have in store at Hyde Park.

Thank God that the Holy Father will not be present to watch it. What one picks up from this dazzling array of performance artists, all perfectly wonderful in their own right, I am sure, is that the Church in England and Wales is bending over backwards to apologise for Catholicism, Catholic Tradition and the traditional devotions which have been the bedrock of the Church for 2,000 years.

It is a masquerade, a sham, a performance, an innovation-obsessed Church, a Church obsessed with the modern and presenting a modern face to the Faithful and to the World. It is a Church embarrassed by Her own tradition, desperate to gain respect and for 'keeping up with the times'. The Church in England is trapped in a timewarp - to be precise - the 1970s and it appears that those responsible for so much liturgy in the Church cannot move on, or delve deeper into the rich heritage of devotion, piety and traditional prayer of the Church.

A Church embarrassed by Her own devotions, a Church embarrassed by Her own teaching, a Church embarrassed by the orthodoxy of Her Pope, a Church, really, that is embarrassed by Christ and His Blessed Mother. It is a Church obsessed with man, rather than God, a Church that presents itself as a 'community group', rather than the Body of Christ who yearn for Him and who love His Gospel.

The Shepherds are there to lead the Priests and the Faithful closer to God, to lead them towards God, but they continually place obstacles in our way as if they are ashamed or embarrassed by Him. When the 'Son of Man returns will He find faith' in England and Wales? Or will he just find a load of men and women dancing about on a stage at the behest of the Hierarchy in England and Wales? It is another opportunity missed, that could have been seized, to show that English Catholicism is back and it has nothing to be ashamed of!

Friday 27 August 2010

"This One Goes Out to All You Oratorians Out There"

The Sweet Eyes of Tender Pity

Browsing The Catholic Herald website the other day, I was gobsmacked when I read that Jon Venables, the young man almost universally despised for the killing of Jamie Bulger, has turned to the One True Faith for refuge and hope, having sought out a Catholic priest in prison, where he is confined having been convicted of child pornography offenses.

In reality we should not be surprised. When the World judges it seldom does so in the light of God's unfathomable mercy. More rarely, does it wish to walk a mile in the shoes of another before casting judgement. More rarely still, does it have the humility to acknowledge its own sins as grievous faults which, too, deserve Divine retribution. God's justice is so much sweeter than earthly justice for He is full of tender pity and compassion. The World cannot comprehend His love and, of course, the pity and love of God's friends on Earth. There is no greater gift on earth than the gift of Faith.

The Mirror reports...

'Child killer Jon Venables has turned to religion – and claims God will forgive him for his crimes. Prison sources said he ­had asked for a Roman Catholic priest to visit him in his cell and spent three hours talking to him. Since then he has made a crucifix out of string and has been given a set of ­plastic rosary beds.

He also spends hours reading the Bible in his cell. Venables, who along with ­Robert Thompson tortured and murdered two-year-old James Bulger in 1993, was sent back to jail last month for breaking his parole when child porn was found on his ­computer.

And officers at the Category A jail where he is being held wonder if his sudden interest in religion is genuine. “It’s a well-trodden path for sick killers like Venables to find God,” said a prison source. “They think that whatever they did in the past will be forgotten because they have suddenly ­become religious. He’s been going around talking about God and how in his eyes he will be forgiven for his sins. But it is a bit strange that he has never mentioned religion before and has only started ­talking about the Bible since he was jailed for the child porn offences a ­couple of weeks ago. It has disgusted people in the jail – especially those who have had to listen to him talking about God and the Bible. Everyone thinks it is an act on Venables’ part, and is some sort of bid to make his life in prison easier.”

However Venables, 27, will never be allowed to attend Sunday services in prison as he is kept segregated from other prisoners for his own safety.  When Venables was recalled to jail for breaching his parole Roman Catholic priest Ray Blake sparked fury when he wrote on an internet blog that he felt “immensely sorry” for him.'

The World reacted similarly when Myra Hindley converted to Catholicism under the care of Lord Longford, commonly derided as a "holy fool" for his generous efforts in bringing the notorious child killer to the Faith of Christ. The reality of God's Judgment is that we will see on the Great and Terrible Last Day many of those the World thought of 'beyond redemption' taken into Paradise, while many the World thought were just consigned to Everlasting Fire and all of God's Elect will rejoice in His Justice and in His Mercy forever in Eternity. If we wish to be on the side of the veil where God reigns as King, then we should pray for a love that 'mirrors' His rather than the hacks at The Mirror.

Boyle to Bellahouston, Essex to Play Hyde Park?

With confirmation that Susan Boyle will be headlining at the Petrine Festival in Glasgow, sponsored by Peter's, purveryors of pies, pasties and savoury slices to the Faithful, details of the line-up for the Hyde Park Festival in London are yet to be confirmed.

According to my sources, Pete Doherty and Carl Barat of newly reformed rockers, The Libertines, were mute when asked to headline for Hyde Park, fearing a backlash reacton from fans. The Bishops of England and Wales also thought that their style of chaotic, electric guitar-led music would be, according to one source, "inappropriate."

So, after all, it looks very much as if it is all going to be down to David Essex to lead the Faithful in preparing the stage for Pope Benedict XVI at Hyde Park. "Don't knock David," said an insider, "There's a lot of spirituality in his music," said one key insider at Eccleston Square, "Hold me close, don't let me go," reminds us of God's unfailing love for us and what is Jesus if He is not the 'love light shining clearly'?' Jesus is, ultimately, our 'silver lining' in the clouds."

Thursday 26 August 2010

Pray for the Trapped Chilean Miners Keeping the Faith

"I'll handle this!" San Lorenzo is brought in to aid trapped miners
Sporting red vestments, a lacy alb and a red hard-hat, the Deacon and Martyr, St Lawrence, patron of miners (I didn't know that) has been brought in to aid and protect the 33 Chilean miners trapped 2,300 feet below ground in sweltering heat.

In Catholic countries, when there is an emergency or a disaster, people quickly call upon help from the Court of Heaven.

In Protestant or largely atheistic countries, like ours, people just say, "Oh, how awful. Poor people...Makes you thankful for Margaret Thatcher. Stick the kettle on will you, love."

According to The Telegraph...

'The miners' families have held vigil at "Camp Hope" for three weeks, at first praying that their fathers, husbands, brothers and sons would be found alive. Their prayers were answered August 22, with the delivery of a note strapped to a drill bit that emerged from the bowels of the Earth carrying a simple red-ink message: "All 33 of us are well and in the shelter".

Now, with officials stressing that a successful rescue could be months away, relatives spend their days writing messages of love and support to the men, who have been trapped for three weeks underground in a 50 sq yard room. The men were told on Wednesday that they may not be rescued until the end of the year. Jaime Mañalich, Chile's health minister, said the men had accepted the news calmly.

Rescuers have been sending clothes, food, medical supplies and games down a cylinder the diameter of a grapefruit to keep the men physically and mentally fit. Among the items being sent down was a football jersey signed by members of the Chilean national team. It was destined for Franklin Lobos, a 55-year-old miner who was a professional footballer in his youth, and even made the national team in the 1980s.
Food and supplies are sent 2,300 ft to Chilean miners
The team's coach Marcelo Bielsa, captain Claudio Bravo, and top players Jorge Valdivia and Matias Fernandez all signed the shirt, which Lobos's daughter Carolina said "will delight my father. He has so much respect for Bielsa and for how he handles the team," she said. The family of Edison Pena, a 34-year-old mechanic, have their own surprise gift for him: a photo of US rock and roll legend Elvis Presley. "Hang in there, because soon you're going to be more famous than Elvis," they wrote in a note accompanying a photo of the singer.
The messages, whether full of tender emotion or lighthearted anecdotes, will bring hope and optimism to men struggling to process the trauma of their fate, psychiatrists said. "They told us that the first days were torture because all they could think was that they would be there forever and that they would die there," said Juan Pena, Edison Pena's father. "They felt the machines drilling nearby looking for them, but not where they were. When the drill finally found them, they felt like they had been revived," he said.'

Heaven help them, because reports are suggesting that the miners will not be out until Christmas unless San Lorenzo can pull a rabbit out of a hat for them. The Guardian's commenters are rather negative about the whole 'praying' thing. "I'll keep them in my thoughts," they say, or, "Send them my kindest regards", as if somehow thinking nice thoughts or sending regards is going to help! "Hello, Roger from Ipswich here. Just to let you know I'm keeping you in my thoughts!"

I don't know if its an old Protestant thing about the Saints or just the idea that anyone could pray for someone is delusional because it 'won't help'.Give the man a chance, will you?! He's only just arrived on the scene! Pray for them.

Religious Doctors are a Problem for the BMA

The British Medical Association find the new report troubling
The BBC reports that...

'Doctors with religious beliefs are less likely to take decisions which could hasten the death of those who are terminally ill, a study suggests. The survey of nearly 4,000 doctors found those with a strong faith were also less likely to discuss end-of-life treatment options with their patient.

The London University research urges greater acknowledgement of how beliefs influence care. Doctors and campaigners described the findings as "concerning". Dr Clive Seale of Barts and the London School of Medicine analysed 3,733 responses from doctors practising in a wide variety of fields, with a particular focus on those who worked in palliative care and with the elderly.

The General Medical Council, which regulates the profession, says that while doctors should start from the assumption that life should be prolonged, this should not be at any cost. While it is illegal to give drugs with the deliberate intention of ending someone's life, doctors may administer morphine or other medication to relieve pain or distress which may have the effect of shortening life - so-called deep sedation.

The GMC also advises that discussions surrounding end-of-life care, including issues such as tube-feeding, hydration and resuscitation, which can all cause avoidable distress, be started with those who are terminally ill well in advance of their dying days.
Patient communication

Those who described themselves as very or extremely non-religious were about 40% more likely to sedate than religious doctors, the study in the Journal of Medical Ethics reported. Being very or extremely religious was also associated with significantly fewer discussions of decisions with patients around treatment at the end of life.

More than 12% of the doctors surveyed described themselves as very or extremely religious, compared with just over 6% of the UK general population - as documented in the last national survey of attitudes. However one in five described themselves as very or extremely non-religious, slightly higher than the general population.

The UK medical population differs in ethnic profile from the population as a whole, with a higher proportion of doctors from South Asian backgrounds. The survey showed that specialists in the care of the elderly were more likely to be Hindu or Muslim than other doctors, while palliative care doctors were slightly more likely to be white and Christian.

The British Medical Association said: "Decisions about end-of-life care need to be taken on the basis of an assessment of the individual patient's circumstances - incorporating discussions with the patient and close family members where possible and appropriate. The religious beliefs of doctors should not be allowed to influence objective, patient-centred decision-making. End-of-life decisions must always be made in the best interests of patients."

Professor Mayur Lakhani, chair of the National Council for Palliative Care, said he was concerned by the findings of the paper. "Core training in palliative care should be mandatory for all doctors to ensure consistency of decision-making, based on best practice and current evidence. Decisions must be taken in partnership with people approaching the end of life and those close to them".

Dr Ann McPherson of the charity Dignity in Dying added that while there was growing awareness of the need to put patients' wishes first, the research indicated there was "still some way to go.The fact that some doctors are not discussing possible options at the end of life with their patients on account of their religious beliefs is deeply troubling. Whilst entitled to their beliefs, doctors should not let them come in the way of providing patient-centred care at the end of life."

David Praill, chief executive of Help the Hospices said the findings highlighted "the maze of complex moral and legal dilemmas that doctors can face when caring for patients at the end of life. Doctors need support to ensure that they have the information, skills and confidence necessary to make the best end of life care decisions with their patients."'

Those nasty Christians! They're not killing off the elderly, terminally ill, sick and infirm quick enough and they even feel reluctant to hasten death! It's about time their religious sentiments were banned from the medical profession. What we're really after is killing on an industrial scale and these Christians don't want to do it! Looks like we're going to need a new law about this!

Wednesday 25 August 2010

Susan Boyle to Sing for Pope Benedict XVI

 According to ITN News...

'She will perform as part of the Pontiff's open air celebration of Mass in Glasgow's Bellahouston Park on September 16. The 49-year-old, from Blackburn in West Lothian, is expected to perform three songs, including her smash hit I Dreamed A Dream, which catapulted her to fame on Britain's Got Talent.
She said: "To be able to sing for the Pope is a great honour and something I have always dreamed of. It's indescribable. I've always wanted to sing for His Holiness and I can't really put into words my happiness that this wish has come true at last. I am humbled and honoured by this invitation and I hope I can do my best."'

I Dream a Dream? Is that the Communion Hymn? The other two songs are yet unknown but let us just hope and pray that they are not Shine, Jesus, Shine and Colours of Day or, well, anything else from Les Miserables or any other naff musical.

Monday 23 August 2010

The SSPX and the Dangers of 'Playing Hard to Get'

I see from Fr Ray Blake's blog, via Rorate Caeli that Bishop Richard Williamson of the 'I want to break free' faction, the Society of St Piux X (SSPX), has been airing his thoughts aloud on his personal blog, to which one apparently has to subscribe in order to view! How very typical of Williamson's brand of Catholicism!

What hits home is the high-handedness with which he writes and his shocking arrogance, as if, somehow, the person with which the SSPX is dealing is the area manager of Waitrose in a customer care complaint, rather than the Successor of St Peter who holds the Keys to the Kingdom of Heaven. Really and truly, in all honesty, the true position of the SSPX  towards the Holy See should be as that of beggars, since by embracing schism they have placed not only their immortal souls but those of all who followed them in jeopardy. I'm sure that's somewhere in the Catecheism.

Read this, Bishop Richard Williamson's latest musings:

'From France and Germany, I was told me a few weeks ago that a large proportion of Catholics attending SSPX Mass centres are only hoping and waiting for some agreement to come out of the discussions. If - repeat, if -- this is true, it is very serious. Such Catholics may get full marks for wishing not to be cut off from what appears to be Rome, but they get low marks for not grasping that as long as the discussions remain doctrinal, there is no way in which the neo-modernist teaching of Vatican II can be reconciled with the Catholic doctrine of the true Church. Such Catholics may venerate and love Archbishop Lefebvre as they see him, but they have not understood what he was all about. They had best wake up if they are not in one way or another to fall into the arms of the neo-modernist Romans.'

What's with the name calling!? Are you Ian Paisley or something!? What appears to be Rome!? What appears to be Rome!? It is Rome for crying out loud! We may be a Church with a large number of 'neo-modernists' and there even may be many of them in Rome, encircling the Papacy, even, but it was not the doors of the SSPX that Our Blessed Lord told St Peter that the 'gates of Hell will not prevail against' but those of the One True Church built on Peter!

We can all sympathise with these staunch traditionalists to a degree, because quite rightly they see Doctrine and Liturgy as feeding each other in a happy symbiotic relationship which lead hopefully to holiness of life, charity and truth. The liberal excesses of those who interpreted Vatican II to mean it was time to throw a disco in the Church and regard Communion as a vol-au-vent have been damaging to the whole Church. Yet, the Church is still the Bride of Christ, whatever the sins of Her members, Her clergy and even the most glaring of liturgical volte-faces which neglected Christ's place at the heart of the Mass.

Holding as sacred and unalterable the Doctrines of the Church is useless if you have severed yourself from the True Vine, if you rupture the Mystical Body of Christ and place yourself in a dark corner telling Holy Mother Church, "We worship God better than you do, look at your Masses now and look at ours. Ours are much better! Told you we were right!" Even the most sinful soul can smell that kind of diabolical Pride a mile off. Our Lord told a Parable about that and it is known commonly now as the Parable of the Prodigal Son. The SSPX are the older brother tutting, mumbling to themselves and wondering how God could still love this Church - His Church! Still, I know that that charge can be levelled at the 'Vatican II' element within the Church who shudder at Pope Benedict XVI's generous outreach work which has come at much cost to himself.

How deceived Williamson and Fellay are and how easily taken in they are by the wiles of the Enemy! Christ's Church may be a Church marred and sullied by liberalism, 'neo-modernism' and sin. She may be a Church led by men who are wayward and so downright negligent in their duties that they can't organise a Papal Visit to the UK and make it even appear as if they are loyal to the Holy Father and the Magisterium. She may be a Church with Masses up and down the country that resemble the Annual Folk Music Convention of Cheltenham, but She is still Christ's Bride!

I know the excommunications have been lifted, but, let's face it, it takes real humility to return joyfully to the Church after having been lapsed for so long and every lapsed Catholic worth his salt knows that. Every soul in mortal sin makes that leap in the Confessional from Darkness to Light and it may have been years. It takes strength of character, courage and bravery to get back into that Barque and begin fighting the good fight along with other traditionalist Bishops and Priests who stayed and fought for what they believed was the true Mass, within the Church, like the Fraternity of St Peter. It also takes humility to forego the power and prestige you have acquired through your rebellion! That takes guts! That takes prayer! That takes the love of Christ!

That is what many Priests did do after Vatican II. They stayed and they fought for Christ! That takes sheer unadulterated courage in the face of the humiliations that followed and perserverence in prayer and action to see that bearing fruit in abundance years later, with more TLMs springing up over the country, thanks to the LMS and Priests enthusiastic towards it and other similar groups which are utterly loyal to the Pope and to the Magisterium and to the 'Real Mass'! Honest Catholics know that you cannot 'pick and choose' Catholic doctrines - and that goes for loyalty to the Holy Father too!

Does the SSPX have the humility to return fully and to 'sober up' after their years in the wilderness cut off from the True Vine? I sincerely and truly hope so, as I am sure does the Holy Father, Pope Benedict XVI, but reading Bishop Williamson's words, they sound like those of a man with something of a death wish, a man who has put his immortal soul on the line and doesn't give a flying one which side of the veil it ends up, neither his, nor those in his care! The Church is still the Instrument of God's Salvation, still the Ark of Truth and She is still Christ's Bride, Bishop Richard Williamson! This one's for you!

Saturday 21 August 2010

O Holy Father (We Love You, Holy Father!)

In preparation for the Papal Visit 2010, when our beloved, Holy Father visits the United Kingdom and especially England, Our Lady's Dowry, I have written a song dedicated to Pope Benedict XVI, now gloriously reigning. Obviously, this is the first draft. It needs a little bit of work and...well, George, obviously...

O Holy Father

The Holy Father’s coming over to the UK
We’re tellin’ you Holy Father that you’re welcome to stay
The Holy Father’s coming over to the UK
We’re telling’ you Holy Father that just can’t wait
O Holy Father (O Holy Father)
We love you Holy Father (O Holy Father)
The Holy Father’s coming over to the UK
The Holy Father’s coming and we’re happy to say

You Rock!
You Rock!
You Rock! (Because)
You’re the Rock!

The Holy Father’s coming over to the UK
Richard Dawkins ain’t so happy and Peter Tatchell ain’t so gay
The Holy Father’s coming over to the UK
The Bishops, they’ll be happy when you back go on your way
But O Holy Father (O Holy Father)
We love you Holy Father (O Holy Father)
The Shepherds don’t appreciate just who is coming
They never listen to you and that’s why they’re running ‘cos

You Rock!
You Rock!
You Rock (Because)
You’re the Rock!

Ah the Holy Father’s coming over to the UK
He’s on a mission from the Lord and Benedict is his name
The Holy Father doesn’t play the media game
He only speaks the Truth and puts our country to shame
But O Holy Father (O Holy Father)
We love you Holy Father (O Holy Father)
He’s coming to a land where abortion is rife
A land where men take men and they don’t take a wife…

Yes you Rock!
He’s the Rock!
He’s the Rock!
He’s the Rock!

The Holy Father’s going to beatify Newman
The Anglican convert who found the True God and True Man
The holy Cardinal’s up there crowned in glory
Anglicans should take a leaf out from his story
But O Holy Father (O Holy Father)
We love you Holy Father (O Holy Father)
It looks like things in Birmingham are gettin’ gory
When will we get the truth about the Oratory?

You're the Rock!
You Rock!
You Rock!
You're the Vicar of Our Saviour!
You're the Successor of St Peter!
You're the Holy Father, Pope Benedict
O Holy Father
(Repeat to fade)

Friday 20 August 2010

Judge 'Criticises' Council over Forced Contraception Attempt

Laodicia yesterday blogged that:

'A trailer just popped up on Radio 4 for a new debating programme. The first topic up is the merits of sterilizing the mentally and morally unfit. Yes that's right folks the merits of sterilizing the mentally and morally unfit. This is to be chaired by liberal pseudo-Catholic Edward Stourton. The problem here is not the result of any debate but the fact that such a topic is considered a fit topic for discussion in the first place. This is part of the softening up process for our Eugenic future.'

Let us not be in any doubt. This is where the culture of death is headed and the BBC will, as usual, be at the forefront of not defending us from it. It is inevitable. A society that embraces voluntary abortion, assisted suicide and artificial contraception is ill-equipped to stand firm and rejects these evils when these practises are suddenly touted as potential methods to be used on citizens in a compulsory manner. Euthanasia was voluntary in Nazi Germany before it became mandatory for certain groups deemed 'unfit' at a time of the State's choosing.

Now, today, we have the first hint of what is to come. According to a report in The Telegraph...

'A judge has criticised a council for trying to have contraception forced upon a woman with a low IQ, warning that the move had “shades of social engineering”.'

"Shades of social engineering" is putting it charitably and mildly. This is a dreadful, spine-chilling move by a local council on the 'reproductive health' and individual rights of a woman.

Nazi Witch: Marie Stopes
Meanwhile, I look forward, very much, to hearing Marie Stopes International's condemnation of this flagrant attack on the rights of a woman over her body, but I fear my hope of doing so may be unfulfilled, since 'reproductive health of women' was not the chief motive of their founder. The chief motive of Marie Stopes was the drive for racial purity and the elimination of the 'unfit'.

The article continues and I think you will agree that it is shocking, with my emphasis in bold blue, lightly fisked in brackets...

'Mr Justice Bodey said it would not be “acceptable” for police to take the married woman from her home before doctors sedated her and imposed birth control on her, against her will. He said the local authority’s plan, to stop the 29 year-old having more children, “would raise profound questions about state intervention in private and family life”.

However, the judge agreed that she lacked the mental capacity to make important decisions about her medical treatment, paving the way for the council to make a further request for force to be used (Sound alarm bells now!). It is the latest in a series of rulings published by the Court of Protection, which until recently always kept its judgements secret, that highlight the power that town halls and judges have over people with learning difficulties or dementia.

Earlier this year a High Court judge sitting in the Court ruled that a woman suffering from cancer, who has a phobia of hospitals and needles, should be forced against her wishes to undergo life-saving treatment. The Court, which was given the power to decide on personal welfare cases under the Mental Capacity Act 2005 (Read about this Act and you'll realise just how dangerous this nasty piece of legislation is...), can also order the withdrawal of life-support from patients as well as making them have abortions or undergo “innovative treatment”.

In the latest case, a council in the Midlands (Great journalism. Which Council, please?!) initially wanted to force contraception on a married woman who has an IQ of 53. None of those involved can be named (How convenient!). She has already had two babies, both of whom were taken away from her at birth by social services and put up for adoption over fears she would not be able to look after them. The woman, known in the judgement as Mrs A, is now married to a man with an IQ of 65, and attends college as well as taking part in voluntary work.

A year ago social workers feared that she was suffering violence at the hands of her husband, and also that he had forced her to stop taking contraception because he wanted a baby, so the council began Court of Protection proceedings to “protect her interests” ( "forcing" her to take contraception!)

Solicitors, doctors and psychiatrists interviewed Mrs A in order to find out whether she understood the choices she had regarding birth control, and their implications. The council argued that she was unable to understand the consequences of not using contraception such as the Pill or a coil, or to envisage what is involved in raising a child. (Read: 'She was not co-operating with the State's wishes'. The 'why' is between her and her husband and frankly, they must both be heartbroken that the SS have taken away their children at birth! Have Social Services no shame!? Apparently not!)

But the Official Solicitor, representing the woman, argued that such a wide approach would mean many first-time mothers would appear to lack capacity. The judge agreed that deciding whether a woman “understood enough about the practical realities of parenthood” would veer into a “paternalistic approach”.

On the narrower medical issue, he agreed that Mrs A lacked the capacity to decide whether to have contraceptive treatment. The judge said her decision to stop taking birth control was “not the product of her own free will” because of the “coercive pressure” placed upon her by her husband. However, he said that the council’s application was no longer for “force and restraint” to be used “so that contraception could be urgently administered”.

The judge said Mrs A’s social worker admitted “there would need to be police involvement” and it would be a “horrendous prospect” for her to be “physically removed from the family home and taken to have contraception under restraint and anaesthesia”.

He declined to make an order as to her best interests, leaving it for the council to assess the couple’s parenting abilities if she did become pregnant and then take “appropriate” steps. The council said it “reserves the right” to argue that force should be authorised in the future.

But the judge said: “It is obvious on the facts of this case, that any step towards long-term court imposed contraception by way of physical coercion, with its affinity to enforced sterilisation and shades of social engineering, would raise profound questions about state intervention in private and family life. Whilst the issue of the use of force has not been argued out at this hearing I cannot, on these facts, presently see how it could be acceptable.”

David Hewitt, a specialist in mental health law at Weightmans, said: “It seems from the judgment that, at least at the outset, the council thought it might need to have the police enforce an order that the woman take her contraceptive medication. That seems quite striking, yet because of the route the judge chose to take, it's still in prospect.”'

George Orwell said, knowing what was on the way, "If you want a picture of the future, imagine a boot stamping on a human face, forever".

Social Services have a habit of doing just that. They are footsoldiers in the State's war upon the Poor and they and I do not call them the SS for nothing. This judge may not have agreed with the Council and may have made some negative remarks, but this woman is still not safe from the band of the wicked who seek to force a married woman to take contraception. He hasn't protected her! Which Council is this!? We the people should demand to know! Not content with ripping this poor womans babies away at birth and adopting them out to some randoms, the SS now wish to enforce contraception on her, the diabolical, wicked, savage group of men and women that they are!

Update: Sorry, I just realised, The Telegraph's image of the contraceptive pill in their article is highly misleading. You cannot 'force' someone to take the contraceptive pill, or 'patch', as you'd have to go round and restrain the woman everyday, nor would the simplest way of doing it be the 'coil', so forced contraception wouldn't look like that.

No. It would look like this:

 Dear, dear. Looks like journalistic standards at The Telegraph are slipping and perhaps their moral standards as well.

If we dare to tolerate the abuse of this 29-year-old's human rights, which we should hold as sacred and inviolable, we cannot complain when we are deemed, 'unfit' to have children. Remember, the male contraceptive injection is on the way too, folks!

As an aside I have heard from the organiser of the Abort67 campaign that they are planning next Tuesday a display outside Marie Stopes Clinic in London next Tuesday. Guess where the clinic is based...go guess...

That's right!

Brixton! They're not subtle are they?

Thursday 19 August 2010

Prayers of an Irish Mother

I found this lovely little book in the Sacristry yesterday and flicked through it. Okay, I 'borrowed' it. I must say it is really a very beautiful prayer book and a heartfelt collection of traditional Catholic prayers, poems and consoling petitions, compiled by Mary Teresa Dolan, the eternal rest of whose soul readers are requested at the beginning to pray.

The prayers are for all times and for perhaps all time. Here one which exemplifies the rich Catholicism of the time in which she wrote:

'When Genuflecting.

We adore Thee, O Lord Jesus Christ, and we bless Thee here and at all the Tabernacles all over the world, because by Thy Holy Cross and Passion Thou has redeemed the world.'

Have we in the UK and in Ireland lost that beautiful prayerfulness before the Tabernacle? You betcha! Here is another:

Act of Consecration to the Sacred Heart

'O Sacred Heart of Jesus! We adore You with all the powers of our souls and we consecrate them to You forever with all our thoughts, words and actions. Why cannot we, O Divine Heart, render You as much praise, love adoration and glory as Thou Thyself dost give to the Eternal Father! Be Thou the repairer of our faults, the protector of our lives and our refuge at the hour of death! We beg the same grace for all poor sinners, the afflicted, the agonising and the dying, in a word, Our Saviour, for all mankind, that the price of Your Precious Blood may not be lost on us and also that it may be applied to the suffering souls in Purgatory. This is what we ask of You, O Adorable Heart of Jesus, with all the aspirations of our hearts, our veins, even to the last breath of our lives. Amen.'

And this is a lovely Prayer for your Priest:

'O Jesus, Eternal Priest, keep this Thy holy one within the shelter of Thy Sacred Heart where none may touch him. Keep unstained his anonited hands which daily touch Thy Sacred Body. Keep unsullied the lips empurpled with Thy Precious Blood. Keep pure and unearthly a heart sealed with the sublime mark of Thy glorious Priesthood. Let Thy holy love surround him and shield him from the world's contagion. Bless his labours with abundant fruit and may they to whom he has ministered be here below his joy and consolation and in Heaven his beautiful and everlasting crown. Amen.'

Yes, as the organisers of the Papal Visit appreciate only too well, modernism is shallow and ugly, sorely lacking in spiritual depth and the beauty of traditional prayer that has served the Church well for centuries. The organisers of the visit unwittingly show us time and time again that modernism and liberalism is the enemy of the souls of the Faithful and that the old prayers are the best.

The Church in Ireland has come in for a huge kicking over the last year or two and rightly so, for it is not just the trust of the young that was lost in the period of the 60s, 70s, 80s, 90s. The great Irish Catholic traditions of reverent, holy, trustful prayer and respect for the holy took a good kicking too. The blame for that, too, has to be levelled at the hierarchy, for it is Shepherds who lose sheep, not sheep who lose their Shepherds. I've looked for it on Amazon and it doesn't appear to be available. Like so much that is has always held us in good stead, so much that is good and holy, it appears to be 'out of print'. Saddening.

By the way, I wonder whether the Bishops of England and Wales could tell us whether any plenary indulgence is granted to the Faithful pilgrims who see the Holy Father at Hyde Park. Perhaps they are just assuming that we all know that without telling us?

We are, in this delightful little book, encouraged to make some 'exterior act of reverence when passing a Church or Chapel in which the Blessed Sacrament is reserved, an indulgence of 100 days each time - Pius X, June 28th, 1908.

Finally, for those of us who are scraping by, who know that even if we don't hit the jackpot money wise, that we may yet hit the jackpot of Grace...

God's Workers
'Who does God's work will get God's pay,
However long may seem the day,
However weary be the way,

Though powers and princes thunder "Nay!"
No human hand God's Hand can stay;
Who does His work will get His pay.

God hurries not, nor makes delay;
Who works for Him will get His pay
Some certain hour, some certain day.

He does not pay as others pay,
In gold or land or raiment gay,
In goods that perish and decay.

But God's high wisdom knows a way.
And this is sure, let come what may,
Who does God's work will get God's pay.'

Is that cheque, cash, or by BACS? Joking!

Is Obama a Trojan Horse for Islam?

It sounds far fetched, doesn't it? According to The Guardian, however, Americans are becoming more unsettled on Obama's self-declared 'Christianity'.

Anyway, for those of you who, like me, like to sound cleverer than they are and who do not actually know the mythology behind the whole Trojan Horse idea, here it is from Wikipedia, the site that helps stupid people to sound intelligent.

'The Trojan Horse is a tale from the Trojan War, as told in Virgil's Latin epic poem The Aeneid and by Quintus of Smyrna. The events in this story from the Bronze Age took place after Homer's Iliad, and before his Odyssey. It was the stratagem that allowed the Greeks finally to enter the city of Troy and end the conflict. In the best-known version, after a fruitless 10-year siege, the Greeks constructed a huge wooden horse, and hid a select force of 30 men inside. The Greeks pretended to sail away, and the Trojans pulled the Horse into their city as a victory trophy. That night the Greek force crept out of the Horse and opened the gates for the rest of the Greek army, which had sailed back under cover of night. The Greek army entered and destroyed the city of Troy, decisively ending the war.'

Beware of Greeks bearing gifts in massive, er, wooden horses! To add fuel to the fire, today, blogger The Catholic Knight has given us a link to Israel Today, a Jewish newspaper, in which Israeli officials are quoted as saying that it is not Iran who is Israel's greatest threat...but Obama. Yikes and double yikes! The article begins...

'Although Israeli officials publicly play down the crisis in relations between Jerusalem and Washington, privately the language is much different. Sources close to Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu describe Obama as a "strategic catastrophe" for Israel.'

It continues...

Officials in the Prime Minister's Office, speaking on condition of anonymity to the nation's top newspapers, see the Obama administration as a serious threat to the future of the State of Israel. On the record, Israel and the US have a "strategic partnership that is unbreakable"; off the record, the terminology is blunt to say the least.

"President Obama and Secretary of State Hillary Clinton have drawn a clear line, supporting the Palestinian position at the expense of Israel," said one Netanyahu confidant. "It is insane, it is sick. Relations between Jerusalem and Washington are simply disastrous; the situation has never been so dangerous. This US President wants to establish a Palestinian state at any price and hand them Jerusalem on a silver platter."

Netanyahu has repeatedly distanced himself from such statements, but commentators say the government speaks with a forked tongue. "Israel's relations with the US are at a low point, and Obama poses a danger to Israel," wrote Nahum Barnea in the nation's biggest newspaper Yediot Ahronot. The feeling among the Israeli public is that Obama is appeasing the Muslim world at the expense of Israel.

And then the bombshell is dropped...

'"The American President told me in confidence that he is a Muslim," said Egyptian Foreign Minister Ahmed Aboul Gheit on Nile TV. That could explain why Obama has instructed that the term "Islamic extremism" no longer be used in official government documents and statements.'

This would, also, of course explain his rather lacklustre patriotism, his deep bow to the Saudi King when visiting and his recent wading into the 'Ground Zero Mosque' debate and would also serve to explain why he as recently as 2006, Barack Hussein Obama raised money and campaigned for a Kenyan presidential candidate who promised to enact Islamic Shariah Law once elected.

Of course, the Egyptian foreign minister could be telling absolute porkies and Obama does appear to be the kind of man who would tell a Jew he was Jewish, a Christian he was Christian and a Muslim he were Muslim if he thought there were some benefit in doing so, and were Obama discovered to be a Muslim (and not a very good Muslim at that, given his love for abortion and gay marriage rights) that would not be the end of the World, since Islam is a major world religion and Presidents are free to practise whatever religion they choose. However, the revelation would be very embarrassing for the administration, as he would be roundly condemned for making the habit of lying, deceiving, dissembling and downright filthy fibbing an art form hitherto unwitnessed perhaps since even the World began, having campaigned during the election as an abortion-supporting, gay marriage-supporting, Blairite Christian of the lowest denomination. Still, like the babies Obama doesn't mind being left to die in cases where an abortion procedure has 'not worked', such a brand of Christianity does have a 'shelf-life' and it wouldn't be surprising if he opted for something more, how shall we say, radical? Obama is a Trojan Horse for a whole raft of ideologically liberal policies that denigrate human dignity.

Catholic Care Loses Appeal

Whatever the truth of Obama's religious affiliation, nothing should surprise us nowadays. After all, it becomes more and more obvious that New Labour and the political success of Tony Blair was just a gigantic Trojan Horse for Peter Tatchell and militant homosexual activists. Today, as The Telegraph reports, Catholic Care, the last Catholic adoption agency faces closure after the Charity Commission that it could not avoid considering same sex parents as potential adopters. Nice one, Tony! Equality Act!? My arse! Can those kids have a sports centre too, yeah?! I mean a sports centre makes everything okay, doesn't it?!

Wednesday 18 August 2010

Popes and 'Liturgical Entertainment'

It is the year 595. Pope St Gregory the Great sits upon the Chair of Peter and spies from afar England and the British Isles and sees, in this country, rich and fertile land for the Gospel of Our Lord Jesus Christ.

The scene is set. He calls to him Augustine, a Benedictine monk who would later become St Augustine of Canterbury, to be the 'Apostle to the English' with some of his brothers.

He orders them to take the Gospel to the English, to be bold and to enlighten the hearts of a nation still in the dark grip of barbarism, pagan practises and an inordinate love for both football and celebrity, while producing only a saddeningly mediocre calibre of both.

How does he do this? Well, by Divine Providence it just so happened that it was in that year that a Benedictine monk called Brother Kendrick had released a song called 'Shine, Jesus, Shine'. It was a hit around the sudden flowering of monasteries all over Europe. So close to the Almighty and Eternal, Holy Trinity, did it bring ailing souls, that very soon, the nascent re-introduction of the practise of Chant was discarded by the saintly Pope in favour of four chords and group of men with perma-grins. With a stunning chord sequence ripped off from Neil Diamond's 'Sweet Caroline', a not entirely dissimilar title and eerily striking chorus in terms of nauseating, sentimental pap, 'Shine, Jesus, Shine' was the song chosen by Pope St Gregory I the Great to convert the British Isles.

It is Holy Tradition that St Augustine arrived in these shores and wrote to Pope St Gregory I the Great that the English were a crazed, bloody-minded bunch of oafs. 'Ah', the Great Pope replied, 'They are not Angles, but Angels...Remember to bow your head every time you mention in Brother Kendrick's song, the Most Holy and Ineffably Sweet Name of Jesus!'

It was around this time that the band of men, by now re-named 'Augustine and the Anglers', the drummer of whom was by now battling alcohol addiction and experimenting with class-A drugs, offered generously, as they were, by Brits to all new musical sensations, penned 'Angels', a song more recently associated with Robbie Williams, whose cover of the Augustinian hit won him both acclaim and admiration in equal measure, dedicating it to the people of England.

Yes, we English put up some resistance to the Gospel at first, but the Glory of God, God's Beauty, evoked as it was, through this simple band of men singing Brother Kendrick's masterpiece, surmounted the 'Stone-walls' of even the coldest of English hearts and warmed them in the furnace of His fiery love, under the banner of the Cross, that Sign of Contradiction, the Sign that conquered this land once steeped in darkness and brought it into the radiance of God's Eternal light.

How fitting it is, then, that when the Holy Father, Pope Benedict XVI, now gloriously reigning, who has made the 'hermeneutic of continuity' in Liturgy and Divine Worship, devout remembrance of the Real Presence of Christ and reverence for Him in that same Blessed Sacrament, central to his pontificate, that when our beloved Pontiff arrives here, here, in England, and walks on this ground, this ground made holy by the footsteps of the Saints down the ages, this land, Our Lady's Dowry, that we will have to endure, I mean, that we will be able to remember, with reverent and holy joy, the music that accompanied St Augstine of Canterbury and his band of holy Brothers here and won its heart and soul to God, the Most High!

Bishop Athanasius Schneider on the Most Holy Eucharist

Catholic is the quarterly newspaper published under the patronage of Our Mother of Perpetual Succour by the Desert Will Flower Press, organ of the Sons of the Most Holy Redeemer.

It is produced and distributed by the Fathers and Brothers of this missionary congregation from its Motherhouse on the island of Papa Stronsay in Orkney, Scotland.

They have published an excerpt from an interview with Zenit in June this year in their latest quarterly newspaper, with His Lordship Bishop Athanasius Schneider, Auxillary of Karaganda, Kazakhstan. The Bishop, who has become well known for his book Dominus Est (concerning reverence towards the Blessed Sacrament). He sounds very inspiring and refreshing in this age when true reverence towards the Blessed Sacrament is an issue taken up by only a minority of Priests and Bishops. This is Bishop Athanasius Schneider talking about the Holy Eucharist...

"For me it's not a new understanding. I, all my life, lived this because I received the Holy Communion in such circumstances of persecution, and this reverence, it was so natural for me as a child to receive. I was told, this is God here present really, and it was so natural to kneel: "This is the Most Holy" as we say, "The Most Holy - Sanctissimum."

Even my mother who lived during these times of persecution, once she saved a priest from the police in the Urals where she was deported. And then her mother, my grandmother was very ill. And when the priest was departing, my grandmother asked my mother to ask the priest prior to his departure to please ask the priest to leave a Holy Host - a consecrated Host in case she (grandmother) died, so that she could receive the Holy Communion. And my mother told the priest this request. And the priest said, "Yes, I will leave you one consecrated Host on the condition that you administer this Holy Communion with the most reverence possible.

My mother gave her (mother) the Holy Communion and to do this my mother took a pair of new white gloves, to give, to administer the host so that she would not touch the host with her bare hands. She would not dare touch the Holy Sacrament with her bare hands, and she took a spoon to administer it.
And this was so profound and so natural for us, and therefore, when we came and saw this in the Western Churches, I was so astonished, but we felt so much sorrow in our soul. I do not judge the person receiving Communion with their hands, this is another question because they can still receive it with reverence and love, but the objective situation of distributing the Holy Communion; you cannot deny this, that it has turned so banal, so less reverent, like distributing cakes.

This is the Lord; when the Risen Lord appeared to the three women and they saw him, they knelt down [...] They fell on their knees on his feet and adored him. And even the Apostles did the same when the Lord went to Heaven. Why should we not do the same? Here is the Lord, real, present as it was for a thousands years in the Catholic Church. Why should we change this?"

Why indeed? Apparently, the Holy Father stopped giving Communion to the Faithful in the hand after having read Bishop Schneider's book. Now that is what I call kudos! How much we need holy Bishops who say this!

All the liturgical innovations in the World will never satiate the hunger of the human heart for the Heart of Jesus! If a Church had been stripped bare, if all a Church had was a Priest, an Altar, Font and a Tabernacle, then that Church would serve God and man better than a thousand Churches with the finest, gilded interiors in the World, if those thousand Churches did not revere and hold in awe the Most Holy, Blessed Sacrament and that one stripped bare Church did!

Bomb Scare at Lourdes

A commenter on my blog was present at Lourdes on the Feast of the Assumption, when a hoax bomb scare threatened. This is from our foreign correspondant...

'Oh the bomb scare! That was quite an experience. There was no panic as the officials evacuated all the sections bit by bit. The outdoor Mass for the French pilgrimage, with 30,000 present according to the local Lourdes paper, had just finished and we were all making our way to different places.

I took the opportunity of going to the baths. I came out of the icy water feeling euphoric and walked towards the Grotto not even noticing that there were only a few people sitting there! I heard a strange siren noise in the distance and various announcemnts in foreign languages but I found it easy to ignore. What must have been several minutes later I realised that there was no queue leading into the Grotto. Instead there was a dog handler and a very large dog with 'DOUANES' on his coat sniffing round the Grotto (the dog not the handler!)I learnt later he was called Hocco (again the dog not the handler!)

That was when I started to listen to the announcement and with a start realised it was telling everyone to leave by the nearest exit 'for security reasons.' Bomb disposal units were helicoptered in from Toulouse and many hundreds of people waited paiently outside the gates. It was strange to see the domaine so bereft of pilgrims. I went to have something to eat and returned to see if the afternoon Rosary was able to take place as usual in the grotto. Sadly the gates were still closed but a young priest had started to say the Rosary outside and we all spilled out into the road and joined in loudly above the noise of the traffic finishing with some well known French Marian hymns. I understand another group did the same at the other main gate. This impromptu prayer time was deeply moving. So many people had come to join in the celebrations for this great Feast day and they were not going to let a hoax bomb threat stop them from celebrating it in some way.

After some four hours the bomb disposal units eventually were satisfied that there were no bombs present and we were all allowed in to the grounds of the domaine where the daily Procession of the Blessed Sacrament took place a little later than usual. The authorities must be congratulated in the way they handled the evacuation safely and swiftly (including one Mass which had to be finished elsewhere).

Fr Tim Finigan has a good piece on the Lourdes 'sceptics'.

More Evidence of the Ontological Change?

Amazing skateboarding hungarian Priest!

Tuesday 17 August 2010

Only those who worship money believe that it can redeem them...

According to the BBC...

'Former Prime Minister Tony Blair is to donate the profits from his memoirs to a sports centre for injured soldiers. A spokesman said Mr Blair would hand over the reported £4m advance payment plus all royalties to honour "their courage and sacrifice".'

So it was when Judas threw back the silver at the high priests in the temple saying, "I have betrayed innocent blood."  Does Mr Blair really think that a sports centre is going to help these people? Let Mr Blair be an example for everyone that power corrupts the soul and that money deceives it into thinking that it is safe.

"Hey, I see my diasterous friendship with George W Bush and ill-judged war in Iraq against the advice of Pope John Paul II has led to your legs being blown off, having seen several of your friends blown up in roadside bomb, leaving their head and limbs in different parts of the road...but, nonetheless, don't worry, because I'm going to build you a swimming pool, tennis court and a football pitch." 

I could go on, but really we should just pray for this poor man whose conscience must eat away at him nightly. We've all made big mistakes and I guess we're just lucky that when we screw up hundreds of thousands of people don't die in agony, nor do thousands watch their children die as a result, a million people having marched on our doorstep to advise us not to launch a dodgy war on the grounds of an even dodgier dossier.

By the way, Tony, Our Lord told us that when we give alms in reparation for our sins we shouldn't let our left hand know what our right hand is doing. He explicitly told us not to broadcast it! Oh my! Who on earth instructed this man in the Faith?! This one's for you 'Tone. Bread!? For crying out loud! I must be getting old! I'll bet Tony secretly wishes he'd stuck with Ugly Rumours and stayed out of politics!

Monday 16 August 2010

The Papal Visit Site Problems

Don't worry, the problems are not technical. Here's a quote from the website...

'Who is the Pope?

The Pope is a follower of Jesus Christ and although he is coming to the UK as a Head of State (The Holy See – the Vatican), the primary purpose of his visit is to share the Good News that God loves us unconditionally and is merciful. It’s this reality – of God’s love and mercy – that is his primary message and is one that lies at the heart of the Catholic Faith. Visit our section on Pope Benedict XVI.
What is a Catholic?
Catholics are Christians, this means that they are followers of Jesus Christ. They believe Jesus Christ is fully God and fully man, the Son of God, their friend, liberator, Lord and Saviour. Catholics believe that Jesus Christ set up the Church (Matthew’s Gospel, chapter 16, verse 18) to pass on the fullness of his teaching, his life, and to carry on his work.'

So, to anyone interested in the Papal Visit, be they Catholic or not, let's just run through that once more. According to the visit website, the Pope is a Catholic, a follower of Jesus Christ and he is a Head of State. A Catholic is a follower of Jesus Christ who is not a Head of State? Hmm...I think there is more to being Pope than merely being a 'Head of State', though I'm sure being a 'Head of State' is a marvellous thing.

Already, we've got to the section about 'The Catholic Faith' on the visit website and there seems to be some confusion being spread over the role of the Pope. It is almost as if the author is not sure of the Holy Father's role. You could be forgiven for thinking he the Pope is just like any other Catholic. So, let's just deal with this. The Pope is the Successor of St Peter, to whom Our Lord Jesus Christ said, "Peter, you are the Rock and upon this Rock I shall build my Church and the gates of Hell shall not prevail against it." The Pope is not a functionary. Neither is his role titular. That is absolutely crucial here. He is not there, nor is he even coming here purely as a 'Head of State'. He might be meeting the Queen as a Head of State, but that is not his capacity when he's going to Hyde Park, Cofton Park or Bellahouston.

The Pope is the Guardian of all Catholics, Chief Shepherd to all Catholics and Guardian of the Deposit of Faith - the Faith handed down by Christ to His Apostles and those Bishops who succeed them. He is today what St Peter was when 'not flesh and blood' revealed Christ's Divinity to him, but His 'Father in Heaven' - the Prince of the Apostles. This was the first infallibale Papal statement and, as far as we know, he wasn't even sitting on the Papal Throne when he said it. The Successor of St Peter, Pope Benedict XVI is still the Rock - a very sturdy Rock at that - and by virtue of his Apostolic Succession as Prince of the Apostles, he is due great reverence, loyalty, deference and obedience. He may be a 'Head of State', but even if he were stripped of this title entirely, he would still hold the Highest Office in the entire World because he is the Pope - the Vicar of Jesus Christ on Earth.

Now, let's move on to...

'Jesus’ teaching

Jesus taught that we should love our neighbour as ourselves (Mark’s Gospel, chapter 12, verse 31). Catholics try to put this into practice and find it to be a life-giving and fulfilling way to live. They are involved in a wide variety of charitable works such as running hostels for the homeless and caring for the elderly.

Some of the core parts of Jesus’ teaching are:

• God loves us
• Believing in him is the way to true freedom, peace and happiness
• We should love God and one another, especially the poor and needy
• Our messes, mistakes and wrongs can be put right - we can be forgiven and know peace
• We can be healed from deep wounds and hurts by calling on the name of Jesus
• If we believe in Jesus we will inherit eternal life and live with him in heaven'

Yes, the Teachings of Our Blessed Saviour are a marvel in our sight. God does indeed love us with an infinite love and following Jesus Christ will indeed bring us true freedom and happiness if we persevere to the end. However, what a wonderful opportunity, in discussing the Teachings of Our Lord, we, and those in charge of the Papal Visit have here, to remember just what He said about His Church and the role of the Pope, Bishops and indeed, Priests:

"He who listens to you, listens to Me." These are the words Christ gave to His Apostles. The Church has God's Authority having been commanded by God, to teach and to 'baptise in the name of the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit'. Not only that, but the Church's hierarchy of Pope, Bishops and indeed Priests, in teaching the Gospel to the nations, in teaching the full Magisterium - the full body of Catholic Truth - are speaking and teaching with the Authority of God Himself. In other words, God Himself requires and has asked these men to proclaim the Gospel fearlessly, united, 'as one', in order that He may communicate His Gospel to men and women worldwide. Men need God and yes, God needs men. So, if you are a Priest or a Bishop who does not do that, since it is clear the Holy Father and many faithful to him do this joyfully, woe to you!

To St Peter, Our Lord said, "Feed My lambs, feed My sheep." In other words, Our Blessed Saviour entrusted to Peter, the Rock, the duty to provide spiritual nourishment not just for all Christians, but for the Apostles themselves. It goes without saying that as Prince of the Apostles, the Apostles will have deferred to St Peter as much 2,000 years ago as they most certainly should today. Peter, who denied Our Lord thrice, was told by Christ that when he had 'recovered' he should 'strenghten the brethren' and confirm them in the One True Faith.

Our Lord breathed on the Apostles and said, "Receive the Holy Spirit. Whoever's sins you forgive, they are forgiven. Whoever's sins you retain, they are retained." In other words, by virtue of the Sacraments that He Himself instituted both before and after His Resurrection, the ministers of the Church, the Pope, Bishops and Priests have been given the Power from God to baptise and to dispense God's mercy through the Sacrament of Confession.

The absolutely glaring error of seeing the Pope or Cardinals and Bishops or Priests as functionaries, is in believing that Ordination has not changed them in any spiritual way. It has and dramatically so! A layman cannot, as much as he may even try, by mouthing the words of consecration over bread and wine at an Altar, change in substance the species into the Precious Body and Blood of Christ. Neither can a layman possibly absolve a penitent. He does not have the power from on High to do so! Even if a layman were the greatest Saint on Earth, he could not do that since he has not the Authority from God to do so! Neither for that matter can a Priest ordain Bishops or make Cardinals. Nor, as Pope John Paul II said, can the Pope change the Church's position on 'wimmin' priests'. Sorry gals! It isn't personal!

Our Lord did not teach His Truths in isolation - dividing His Holy Gospel from His Church in any way. The Church is the Ark of His Gospel, our Mother, just as His Blessed Mother was the Ark of the New and Everlasting Covenant - the Eternal Word, Himself. On Earth, He did not leave any room for separation or confusion between His Truth and His Church, built on His Apostles. He did not teach the Apostles one Gospel for them as Shepherds and another for the rest of the Church. Nor did He teach the Apostles the Faith only for them to teach that the Truth would be found outside of the Church.

No, the Faith of Christ has been given to the Church, to be transmitted by the Pope, the Bishops and Priests to the Laity and the whole Church. This Teaching, meditated upon by the Church, She who is guided by the Holy Spirit down the ages, is full and entire. It is indivisible and it is whole. The Gospel is as much about obedience and loyalty to the Successor of St Peter as it is about feeding the hungry. What God has joined together let no man put asunder - Christ and His Church. No man, nor woman, no layman, Priest, Bishop or even Pope can separate Christ from His Church.

Neither the Pope, the Successor of St Peter, nor Bishops, nor Priests are functionaries, administrators, or house-sitters, neither are they social workers, political activists or any secular vocation you can imagine. They are Alter Christus - other Christs. Christ has called these men to be Christs to the World, Christs who proclaims God's Kingdom to men, Christs who save souls, Christs who are instruments of His Absolution and Salvation, Christs who teach the whole Church and the World, His Truth boldly and without fear knowing that it is the Truth that sets the hearts of men and women free. The great fear of many Catholics, is that many Bishops and Priests seemingly neither know the Catholic Faith, nor do they teach it.

Who is the Pope? He is the Vicar of Jesus Christ on Earth. Where Peter is, there is the Church. Where the Church is, there is Eternal Life. That is one quote which should really be on the Papal Visit website, but sadly, I fear the organisers of this Papal Visit simply do not understand the One True Faith which they are charged with the duty to transmit.

Sunday 15 August 2010

The LMS Announces its First Ever Walking Pilgrimmage to Walsingham...

How exciting...just imagine making a pilgrimmage that doesn't end up with a folk-guitar Mass!

'The Latin Mass Society is organising a Walking Pilgrimage from Ely to Walsingham from Friday 20 August to Sunday 22 August. There is a noble tradition of walking pilgrimages to Walsingham which the LMS wishes to revive. The pilgrimage is inspired by the great Paris to Chartres Traditional annual walking pilgrimage which attracts thousands of young participants.

The LMS pilgrims will leave Ely on Friday 20 August after a 7.00 am blessing in Ely Cathedral. Accommodation will be in tents. There will be daily Mass in the Traditional Latin Rite concluding with a Traditional Mass in the Chapel of Reconciliation at Walsingham at 2.30 pm on Sunday 22 August. This will be open to all.

The pilgrimage will be restricted to adults for this year whilst any practical problems are ironed out. It is hoped it will be much larger next year. Dr Joseph Shaw, LMS Chairman, said: “I am very excited by this pilgrimage – it’s the sort of practical and challenging devotion which young people in particular find of great benefit. This is just one of the evangelical activities by which the LMS is responding to Pope Benedict’s call for a fresh presentation of the Faith in Europe”. For registration and full details potential pilgrims should e mail the organiser, Paul Smeaton, on or telephone the LMS office on 020 7404 7284.'

I should add that the cost of the Pilgrimmage is £60 per pilgrim, but those in financial need are encouraged to pay what they can afford. Pilgrims will meet at Ely campsite on the evening of Thursday 19th August and the pilgrimmage will start with a blessing in Ely Cathedral at 7am on Friday 20th. 

Dr Alan Keyes on Obama's Support for 'Ground Zero Mosque'

I could scarcely believe it when I read of President Obama's support for a mosque to be erected at the site of Ground Zero. Tasteless? It doesn't do it justice. Insulting? It doesn't do it justice. Justice? Obama just doesn't do it. He strikes me as a President at war with his own country and his own people, if, indeed, they are his own people...

Loyal to Liberty is the blog of the excellent Dr Alan Keyes, and I post his anaylsis of the decision below.

'I always find it repugnant when Barack Obama pretends to articulate and apply America’s moral values. As products of Saul Alinsky’s finishing school for Marxist protégés, Obama and his crew have no respect for the self-evident truths in which those values originate. It’s not that they have no use for them. On the contrary, they refer to them only when they are useful for ideological warfare.

Obama’s reference yesterday to religious tolerance, and America’s respect for religious freedom, is a case in point. According to an AP report, he “is weighing in forcefully on the mosque near ground zero, saying a nation built on religious freedom must allow it….While insisting that the place where the twin towers once stood was indeed “hallowed ground,” Obama said that the proper way to honor it was to apply American values.”

By taking this stance Obama chooses to show no regard for the view that the proposed mosque is intended as a monument to Islamic terrorism’s greatest victory. He chooses simply to brush aside the possibility that it is being erected in the same spirit that led Palestinians, and many other admirers of the 9-11 terrorists to dance in the streets with jubilation at their devastating assault on the United States. He therefore seeks to invoke America’s values in order to embarrass and silence those who seek to defend America’s security against what surely could be an insidious symbol, used to rally and mesmerize new recruits for future attacks against us.

Obama cannot plead ignorance of Muslim history and tradition. He knows that it was the practice of Muslim conquerors to erect places of Islamic worship on or near the sites of their decisive victories (preferably transforming or replacing something held in reverence by the conquered people.) He knows the message of exultant pride the ground zero mosque will constantly convey. He knows; just as he knew the message of American submission conveyed by his deep bow to the Saudi King, the Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques; just as he knows of the suspected connections between the progenitors of the ground zero mosque and the infrastructure of Islamic terrorism.

The most effective war strategies target the enemy’s morale. They seek to mobilize his deepest moral fears and convictions against actions he might take to thwart the assault against him. Terrorism is especially aimed at achieving this strategic goal.

In his words, his actions and his very person Obama is the moral equivalent of a weapon of mass destruction. He has consistently implemented this form of warfare against the morale and spirit of the American people. Now he does so in order to target America’s righteous commitment to uphold the memory of 9-11′s victims against the spiteful pride of those who, still at war with our nation, seek to make perpetual war upon the tragic memory of their deaths, and the principle of justice that condemns their murderers.

Though he thus slyly seeks to abuse our founding principles against us, Obama’s deployment of this tactic suffers from the fact that, on account of his Islamic/Marxist formation, he has never taken them seriously as statements of self-evident truth. The first such truth is that in human affairs justice arises from implementing an understanding of right informed by the will of the Creator. This involves, first of all, understanding that it is right to fulfill the obligation to preserve and perpetuate God’s original gift to humanity, the gift of life. No valid claim of right can be made on behalf of actions inconsistent with this obligation. Practitioners of a religious cult that sacrifices innocent people cannot cloak their practice of murder as the free exercise of religion. Neither can practitioners of Islamic terrorism who assault innocent people as part of their implacable jihad against infidels. In America, the exercise of religious freedom must respect the indispensable understanding of right from which all people derive their claim to any rights at all.

It is and has always been clear that Obama rejects this logic. He is the staunchest proponent of “abortion rights” in American politics. He has construed “abortion rights” to include the “right” to withhold care, and thus to murder, fully born children, if they are born alive despite the procedure intended to kill them. He thus sought to place the murderous practice of infanticide behind the protective veil of right. It is therefore no wonder that he is willing to abuse the principle of religious rights in order to protect a project likely to enhance the morale of murderous terrorists.

9-11 will always evoke righteous grief and anger in true American hearts. Aside from showing off his alien contempt for such feelings, Obama’s strategic perversion of America’s heritage of religious freedom aims to deepen the confusion of liberty with licentiousness that the Obama Democrats everywhere promote. The right use of freedom can never include actions that aim to murder, enslave and terrorize innocent people. What is wrong can never be done by right, except the people that authorize it overthrow the premise of justice that is the bedrock principle of America’s way of life.

Therefore, our respect for the free exercise of religion does not require that we permit the erection of what may reasonably be construed as a monument to Islamic terror. On the contrary, since terrorism chiefly aims to destroy the moral courage of our people, a true concern for our national security requires that we respect the nation’s united reverence for the place that evokes the justice of our fight against it. The ground zero mosque project targets our unity. It targets our morale. Those who support it do what gives aid and comfort to the enemies of both.'

Update: I've attracted the ire of one, perhaps two people (making up a different name doesn't mean you've convinced me loads of people are now suddenly commenting on this very, very peripheral blog) and have been called a racist bigot. I won't do another whole post on this because I've said all I wanted to say. Rather, Dr Alan Keyes has said it for me. Dr Keyes elucidates on the whole citizenship issue in the video above.

It does strike me that Obama is un-American in as much as he doesn't appear to understand the American psyche, US patriotism and love for the country. He comes across as someone who actually despises American tradition. The previous incumbent, also disasterous, understood it only too well but abused that popular feeling while presiding over the highest office in the land. My criticism of Obama has nothing at all to do with the colour of his skin, for, as you can see, another black man (a practising Catholic in good standing, by the way) is calling Obama up on his lack of patriotism and the remaining suspicions surrounding his eligibility to be US President. Dr Keyes is right about Obama's apparent love of 'old time socialism', with all the despotism and tyranny that trails in its wake. Dr Keyes is especially on the mark concerning Obama's desire to alter the fabric of American society to embrace a culture of death rather than preserving and defending a culture that preserves and defends human life. I believe Dr Keyes is a true libertarian and defender of human rights.

The Feast of the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary



November 1, 1950

...39. We must remember especially that, since the second century, the Virgin Mary has been designated by the holy Fathers as the new Eve, who, although subject to the new Adam, is most intimately associated with him in that struggle against the infernal foe which, as foretold in the protoevangelium,[44] would finally result in that most complete victory over the sin and death which are always mentioned together in the writings of the Apostle of the Gentiles.[45] Consequently, just as the glorious resurrection of Christ was an essential part and the final sign of this victory, so that struggle which was common to the Blessed Virgin and her divine Son should be brought to a close by the glorification of her virginal body, for the same Apostle says: "When this mortal thing hath put on immortality, then shall come to pass the saying that is written: Death is swallowed up in victory."[46]

40. Hence the revered Mother of God, from all eternity joined in a hidden way with Jesus Christ in one and the same decree of predestination,[47] immaculate in her conception, a most perfect virgin in her divine motherhood, the noble associate of the divine Redeemer who has won a complete triumph over sin and its consequences, finally obtained, as the supreme culmination of her privileges, that she should be preserved free from the corruption of the tomb and that, like her own Son, having overcome death, she might be taken up body and soul to the glory of heaven where, as Queen, she sits in splendor at the right hand of her Son, the immortal King of the Ages.[48]

41. Since the universal Church, within which dwells the Spirit of Truth who infallibly directs it toward an ever more perfect knowledge of the revealed truths, has expressed its own belief many times over the course of the centuries, and since the bishops of the entire world are almost unanimously petitioning that the truth of the bodily Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary into heaven should be defined as a dogma of divine and Catholic faith-this truth which is based on the Sacred Writings, which is thoroughly rooted in the minds of the faithful, which has been approved in ecclesiastical worship from the most remote times, which is completely in harmony with the other revealed truths, and which has been expounded and explained magnificently in the work, the science, and the wisdom of the theologians-we believe that the moment appointed in the plan of divine providence for the solemn proclamation of this outstanding privilege of the Virgin Mary has already arrived.

42. We, who have placed our pontificate under the special patronage of the most holy Virgin, to whom we have had recourse so often in times of grave trouble, we who have consecrated the entire human race to her Immaculate Heart in public ceremonies, and who have time and time again experienced her powerful protection, are confident that this solemn proclamation and definition of the Assumption will contribute in no small way to the advantage of human society, since it redounds to the glory of the Most Blessed Trinity, to which the Blessed Mother of God is bound by such singular bonds. It is to be hoped that all the faithful will be stirred up to a stronger piety toward their heavenly Mother, and that the souls of all those who glory in the Christian name may be moved by the desire of sharing in the unity of Jesus Christ's Mystical Body and of increasing their love for her who shows her motherly heart to all the members of this august body. And so we may hope that those who meditate upon the glorious example Mary offers us may be more and more convinced of the value of a human life entirely devoted to carrying out the heavenly Father's will and to bringing good to others. Thus, while the illusory teachings of materialism and the corruption of morals that follows from these teachings threaten to extinguish the light of virtue and to ruin the lives of men by exciting discord among them, in this magnificent way all may see clearly to what a lofty goal our bodies and souls are destined. Finally it is our hope that belief in Mary's bodily Assumption into heaven will make our belief in our own resurrection stronger and render it more effective.

43. We rejoice greatly that this solemn event falls, according to the design of God's providence, during this Holy Year, so that we are able, while the great Jubilee is being observed, to adorn the brow of God's Virgin Mother with this brilliant gem, and to leave a monument more enduring than bronze of our own most fervent love for the Mother of God.

44. For which reason, after we have poured forth prayers of supplication again and again to God, and have invoked the light of the Spirit of Truth, for the glory of Almighty God who has lavished his special affection upon the Virgin Mary, for the honor of her Son, the immortal King of the Ages and the Victor over sin and death, for the increase of the glory of that same august Mother, and for the joy and exultation of the entire Church; by the authority of our Lord Jesus Christ, of the Blessed Apostles Peter and Paul, and by our own authority, we pronounce, declare, and define it to be a divinely revealed dogma:

that the Immaculate Mother of God, the ever Virgin Mary, having completed the course of her earthly life, was assumed body and soul into heavenly glory.

45. Hence if anyone, which God forbid, should dare willfully to deny or to call into doubt that which we have defined, let him know that he has fallen away completely from the divine and Catholic Faith.

46. In order that this, our definition of the bodily Assumption of the Virgin Mary into heaven may be brought to the attention of the universal Church, we desire that this, our Apostolic Letter, should stand for perpetual remembrance, commanding that written copies of it, or even printed copies, signed by the hand of any public notary and bearing the seal of a person constituted in ecclesiastical dignity, should be accorded by all men the same reception they would give to this present letter, were it tendered or shown.

47. It is forbidden to any man to change this, our declaration, pronouncement, and definition or, by rash attempt, to oppose and counter it. If any man should presume to make such an attempt, let him know that he will incur the wrath of Almighty God and of the Blessed Apostles Peter and Paul.

48. Given at Rome, at St. Peter's, in the year of the great Jubilee, 1950, on the first day of the month of November, on the Feast of All Saints, in the twelfth year of our pontificate.

I, PIUS, Bishop of the Catholic Church, have signed, so defining.

The Pope Who Won't Be Buried

It has been a long time since I have put finger to keyboard to write about our holy Catholic Faith, something I regret, but which I put larg...