Friday, December 31, 2010

A Younger Ted Kennedy on Abortion


"While the deep concern of a woman bearing an unwanted child merits consideration and sympathy, it is my personal feeling that the legalization of abortion on demand is not in accordance with the value which our civilization places on human life. Wanted or unwanted, I believe that human life, even at its earliest stages, has certain rights which must be recognized — the right to be born, the right to love, the right to grow old.

"On the question of the individual's freedom of choice there are easily available birth control methods and information which women may employ to prevent or postpone pregnancy [editor's note: Ted already betrayed the fort with that remark]. But once life has begun, no matter at what stage of growth, it is my belief that termination should not be decided merely by desire.

"When history looks back to this era it should recognize this generation as one which cared about human beings enough to halt the practice of war, to provide a decent living for every family, and to fulfill its responsibility to its children from the very moment of conception."

- Senator Ted Kennedy of Massachusetts, August 3, 1971

Sunday, December 26, 2010

Road Trip

This week I'm wintering at my parents' house in Florida. Normally I would fly a commercial airline for this outing, but instead I drove nine hours rather than endure the TSA harassment at the airport. And I feel much safer for it.

Friday, December 24, 2010

Odin Go Home

Christmas Eve


Hugo Jaeger, one of Hitler's personal photographers, took pictures of the Fuhrer, his generals, and a herd of Nazi thugs at a Christmas-time gala for SS officer cadets in Munich on December 18, 1941. Jaeger buried the images in glass jars on the outskirts of Munich; later he sold them to Life Magazine, which published many of them this week.

The mass murderers are not having a good time of it, judging by their dispirited scowls in the color prints. Small wonder, as the Russians had been knocking them about the eastern front pretty well.

The photos are interesting on multiple levels, one of them being that they help demonstrate how much the Nazis really hated Christianity.

From the article:

* Hitler believed religion had no place in his 1,000-year Reich. He replaced the Christian figure of St. Nicholas with the Norse god Odin. He directed Germans to celebrate the season as a holiday of the "winter solstice."

* The angel atop the Christmas tree in one photo has been replaced with a swastika. Many of the tree's ornaments carried runic symbols and iron cross motifs.

* A few years later, in 1944-1945, the Nazis tried to reinvent Christmas as a day to commemorate the war dead.

Points to ponder the next time someone trots out the calumny that the Third Reich was the consequence of centuries of Christian anti-Semitism.

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

New Nativity

We have a new installment in the collection of Nativity sets.

Thanks Mom!

Sunday, December 19, 2010

The Virgin Birth

"Before she was in labor, she brought forth; before her time came to be delivered, she brought forth a man child."
Isaiah 66:7

This prophecy from Isaiah describes the birth of Christ: when He was born into the world, He did so in a way that left His mother's virginity intact.

Something like this miracle is repeated after the Resurrection, when Christ appears to His disciples after they have locked themselves in the upper room:

"Now when it was late the same day, the first of the week, and the doors were shut, where the disciples were gathered together, for fear of the Jews, Jesus came and stood in the midst..."
John 20:19

Mary was always a Virgin -- to the ends of her days, Deo gratias.

Thursday, December 16, 2010

By the Numbers

What's the ratio of cradle Catholics to the overall population vs. the ratio of Catholic immigrants to the overall population? The US population has skyrocketed, while the number of cradle Catholics have not kept pace. That the ratio seems comparable to what we saw 50 years ago is due largely to Catholic immigrants.

Of those who call themsleves Catholic, how many accept all the dogmas? How many accept as a matter of Faith the True Presence, Papal infallability, and the Immaculate Conception? Attend Mass every Sunday, keep their Easter duty, and refuse the use of artificial birth control? Only a minority of those who call themselves Catholic.

The problem stems from the highest levels, where Churchmen from Rome on down have parted from the faith of their fathers and embraced a new modernist creed. The children have asked for bread, and their modernist spiritual fathers have given them stones. The situation is grave indeed.

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

America's Patroness

Feast of the Immaculate Conception

"I will put enmities between thee and the woman."

In these words the Immaculate Conception of the Blessed Virgin Mary was announced to our first parents. It was to be the reversal of the friendship with the serpent contracted by Eve, when she listened to his voice and fell under his power. The second Eve was never to be under the power of the devil; the enmity between them was to admit of no possible exception. This involved the grace of being conceived immaculate. Mary's Immaculate Conception was the foundation of all her graces. The absence of any stain or spot of sin distinguished her from all the rest of mankind. It distinguished her from the holiest of the Saints, since they, one and all, were sinners. Her perfect sinlessness was the source of all her glory and all her majesty; it was this which opened the door to the unlimited graces which she received from God; it was this that qualified her for her divine maternity, and raised her to her throne as Queen of heaven.

"O Queen, conceived without original sin, pray for us, who have recourse to thee."

As December 8 is the feast day of the Immaculate Conception -- the patroness of the United States -- it seems fitting to offer up today this prayer for the country.

Prayer for Our Government
Abridged from a prayer composed by Archbishop Carroll A.D. 1800, for the United States of America

We pray Thee, O almighty and eternal God, who through Jesus Christ hast revealed Thy glory to all nations, to preserve the works of Thy mercy; that Thy Church, being spread through the whole world, may continue, with unchanging faith, in the confession of Thy name.

We pray Thee, O God of might, wisdom, and justice, through whom authority is rightly administered, laws are enacted, and judgment decreed, assist, with Thy Holy Spirit of counsel and fortitude, the President of the United States, that his administration may be conducted in righteousness, and be eminently useful to Thy people over whom he presides, by encouraging due respect for virtue and religion; by a faithful execution of the laws in justice and mercy; and by restraining vice and immorality. Let the light of Thy divine wisdom direct the deliberations of the Congress, and shine forth in all the proceedings and laws framed for our government; so that they may tend to the preservation of peace, the promotion of national happiness, the increase of industry, sobriety, and useful knowledge, and may perpetuate to us the blessings of equal liberty.

We pray for his Excellency the Governor of this State, for the members of the Assembly, for all judges, magistrates, and other officers who are appointed to guard our political welfare; that they may be enabled, by Thy powerful protection, to discharge the duties of their respective stations with honesty and ability.

We recommend likewise to Thy unbounded mercy all our brethren and fellow-citizens, throughout the United States, that they may be blessed in the knowledge, and sanctified in the observance of Thy most holy law; that they may be preserved in union and in that peace which the world cannot give; and, after enjoying the blessings of this life, be admitted to those which are eternal.

Sunday, December 5, 2010

Only Saints Go to Heaven

From St. Lous de Montfort's True Devotion: Consecration to Mary:

There are those who think that it is sufficient to be saved and that it is not necessary to be a saint. It is clearly not necessary to be a saint who performs miracles and whose sanctity is officially recognized by the Church. To be saved, we must take the way of salvation, which is identical to that of sanctity. There will be only saints in heaven, whether they enter there immediately after death or after purification in purgatory. No one enters heaven unless he has that sanctity which consists in perfect purity of soul. Every sin, though it should be venial, must be effaced, and the punishment due to sin must be borne or remitted, in order that a soul may enjoy forever the vision of God, see Him as He sees Himself, and love Him as He loves Himself. Should a soul enter heaven before the total remission of its sins, it could not remain there and would cast itself into purgatory to be purified.