In Memoriam: Tiananmen Square

Thursday, June 5, AD 2014

“The bravest are surely those who have the clearest vision of what is before them, glory and danger alike, and yet notwithstanding, go out to meet it.”

Thucydides

 

Yesterday, June 4, was the twenty-fifth anniversary of the brutal suppression of the pro-Democracy protests in Tiananmen Square in Beijing.  Over 3000 of the protestors were murdered by the Communist government of China.  Tyranny won that round, but I have absolutely no doubt that Democracy will ultimately prevail in the Middle Kingdom.  When it does, the heroes and heroines of Tiananmen Square will be remembered and their murderers forgotten.

 

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China on the Brink of Bankruptcy

Wednesday, November 16, AD 2011

China has long been held up as an economic model by some people on the Left in this country.  For example, go here to read a 2009 piece by New York Times columnist Thomas Friedman in which he celebrates the virtues of the “reasonably enlightened” rulers of China while bashing Republican opposition to Obama.  Knowing a bit about Chinese history, and quite a bit about Communist regimes of various stripes, I have been skeptical.  I have doubted whether anyone could trust the economic statistics put out by the Chinese government and accepted as Gospel by gullible Westerners.  Well, now the curtain has been lifted for a peek behind the scenes of the Chinese economy.

China’s economy has a reputation for being strong and prosperous, but according to a well-known Chinese television personality the country’s Gross Domestic Product is going in reverse.

Larry Lang, chair professor of Finance at the Chinese University of Hong Kong, said in a lecture that he didn’t think was being recorded that the Chinese regime is in a serious economic crisis—on the brink of bankruptcy. In his memorable formulation: every province in China is Greece.

The restrictions Lang placed on the Oct. 22 speech in Shenyang City, in northern China’s Liaoning Province, included no audio or video recording, and no media. He can be heard saying that people should not post his speech online, or “everyone will look bad,” in the audio that is now on Youtube.

In the unusual, closed-door lecture, Lang gave a frank analysis of the Chinese economy and the censorship that is placed on intellectuals and public figures. “What I’m about to say is all true. But under this system, we are not allowed to speak the truth,” he said.

Despite Lang’s polished appearance on his high-profile TV shows, he said: “Don’t think that we are living in a peaceful time now. Actually the media cannot report anything at all. Those of us who do TV shows are so miserable and frustrated, because we cannot do any programs. As long as something is related to the government, we cannot report about it.”

He said that the regime doesn’t listen to experts, and that Party officials are insufferably arrogant. “If you don’t agree with him, he thinks you are against him,” he said.

Lang’s assessment that the regime is bankrupt was based on five conjectures.

Firstly, that the regime’s debt sits at about 36 trillion yuan (US$5.68 trillion). This calculation is arrived at by adding up Chinese local government debt (between 16 trillion and 19.5 trillion yuan, or US$2.5 trillion and US$3 trillion), and the debt owed by state-owned enterprises (another 16 trillion, he said). But with interest of two trillion per year, he thinks things will unravel quickly.

Secondly, that the regime’s officially published inflation rate of 6.2 percent is fabricated. The real inflation rate is 16 percent, according to Lang.

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One Response to China on the Brink of Bankruptcy

Our Catholic Veep in Action

Monday, August 22, AD 2011

Oh Joe, Joe, Joe, Joe.  God love ya.

But as I was talking to some of your leaders, you share a similar concern here in China.  You have no safety net.  Your policy has been one which I fully understand — I’m not second-guessing — of one child per family.  The result being that you’re in a position where one wage earner will be taking care of four retired people.  Not sustainable.

That’s right.  The Vice President of the United States of America, a good old Catholic, was speaking in China and couldn’t bring himself to criticize China’s one child policy.  No, he went so far as to say that he understands the policy.   This comes a mere few moments after he had expended some hot air about human rights.

 I recognize that many of you in this auditorium see our advocacy of human rights as at best an intrusion, and at worst an assault on your sovereignty.  I want to tell you directly that this is not our intention.  Yes, for Americans there is a significant moral component to our advocacy.  And we observed where we have failed, as well.  But it is who our people are.

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6 Responses to Our Catholic Veep in Action

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  • Now thats a profile in courage !!

    I’m sure he will receive a funeral for a saint like Ted Kennedy had…

  • Notice that religious freedom isn’t even mentioned.

    Our bishops were arrested and hauled off to God knows where, pretenders were put in their place, priests, Brothwre, and Sisters were deported from the country if foreign and sent back to their home states if Chinese, Catholic layity have had their houses burned, been assaulted and murdered, and it is still a crime to bring an un-censured bible into thw country. And our “Catholic” VP says exactly nothing about it.

    Remind me again why we call him Catholic when he is running for office.

  • I’m trying to understand why a statement like that wouldn’t trigger a process of formal excommunication.

  • Biden’s comments are nothing in comparison to Pelosi’s. So the better question is why the Church is so hesitant to state what seems to a layman to be true: that these folks have excommunicaed themselves.

  • I’m as puzzled as Pinky (above).

    All I can figure is that U.S. bishops have a well-founded fear that Catholics will be targets of widespread violence, maybe even packed off to extermination camps, if they criticize the Democrat party or its quislings.

Christ Rises in the East

Thursday, July 22, AD 2010

A stunningly good story here at NPR on the growth of Christianity in China.  I stand in awe of these Chinese Christians who risk everything for their faith.  Official persecution seems to only spur their growth.  They are worthy children of Matteo Ricci, and countless other missionaries down through the centuries, and generations of Chinese Christians, who, in the face of the most savage persecution under Mao that any Christians have ever faced, have persevered and are now on the verge of triumph.

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Catholic-Islam Dialogue: Reciprocity the Key

Wednesday, May 12, AD 2010

For the past few years I have been taking my Catholic school students over to the nearby Mosque, as part of their World Religions research. It has gone well, everyone is on their best behavior, and it gives the students a chance to hear about Islam from devout Muslims, in their own place of worship. I also have visited the Mosque and Islamic community during the time of my run for public office to speak and dialogue about issues where we would find some common ground. It has all been a very positive experience, but there is one large elephant in the room that must be paid attention to.

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53 Responses to Catholic-Islam Dialogue: Reciprocity the Key

  • Even if we were to accept all of Saudi Arabia as a special case similar to Vatican City, what about the entire rest of the muslim world? The constitutions of Pakistan, Syria, Jordan, Egypt, Iraq, and Afghanistan all recognize Islamic law as the basis for their legal system, often to the exclusion of anything else. Source: http://www.centerforsecuritypolicy.org/p16600.xml?genre_id=3

  • Good argument. So much for the Vatican-Saudi Arabia comparison. I can understand Mecca, and perhaps Medina, not allowing churches or synagogues, but not Riyadh or the rest of the country. That us like Milan or Venice not allowing non-Catholic places of worship.

  • You are wrong.

    Muhammedanism is a vicious affront to Our Lord and Savior, and a threat to world peace. It has been waging a desultory war against the rest of mankind since about 640 Anno Domini.

    Your ‘good’ muslims are biding their time and financing global terrorism . . .

  • T. Shaw- I take my cue from the Magisterium- dialogue is encouraged, Muslims worship the same God as we- Jews do not worship in full comprehension of the Blessed Trinity- but we do not say they do not worship the One, True God.

    In some very important ways we have much more in common with a faithful Muslim than with a hardened secularist who is pro-abortion, pro-gay marriage and so forth- if we are talking about non-negotiable type issues.

    The problem is the reciprocity of religious liberty- and this is a major, major stumbling block that must be addressed for honest dialogue to take place- otherwise we would do well to suspect that dialogue is a one-way street and infiltration of our society in order to radically curtail our Christian freedom is a real threat to society- so let’s not go too far with our beef against Islam, but let’s stay connected to our Magisterium in how we proceed in relationship to these believers.

  • Tim,

    A good post.

    Though there is one point I disagree with and that is jihad.

    jihad is usually described as an internal struggle inside each man’s heart for moral purity.

    Only within the last couple of decades has this line of thought been thrown around.

    Jihad explicitly does mean the subjugation of non-Muslim nations if they refuse to convert without force.

    There is nothing in the Quran nor the hadiths that state anything close to the Just War Doctrine that we have.

    Just my two cents worth.

  • I work with several devout, normal muslims & I like them. I doubt very much that they’re “biding their time”, for heaven’s sake.
    OTOH, since you’re taking your cues from the Vatican, I hope you explain to your class what the word syncretism means.

  • Vatican Council II indicates that all Jews and Muslims in Rome are on the way to Hell. The Bible, the Church and Vatican Council II says Jews and Muslims need to convert into the Catholic Church to go to Heaven. All of them. Ad Gentes 7 says all people need Catholic Faith and the Baptism of water for salvation. All means everyone with no exceptions.

    Therefore, all must be converted to Him, made known by the Church’s preaching, and all must be incorporated into Him by baptism and into the Church which is His body. For Christ Himself “by stressing in express language the necessity of faith and baptism (cf. Mark 16:16; John 3:5), at the same time confirmed the necessity of the Church, into which men enter by baptism, as by a door.-Ad Gentes 7,Vatican Council II.

    Ad Gentes 7 says those who know about Jesus and the Catholic Church and yet do not enter are on the way to Hell. In Italy Muslims and Jews know about Jesus and the Catholic Church. It is a mortal sin of faith when they do not enter the Catholic Church.

    Therefore those men cannot be saved, who though aware that God, through Jesus Christ founded the Church as something necessary, still do not wish to enter into it, or to persevere in it.-Ad Gentes 7, Vatican Council II

    Whosoever, therefore, knowing that the Catholic Church was made necessary by Christ, would refuse to enter or to remain in it, could not be saved.-Lumen Gentium 14, Vatican Council II

  • Tito- as for jihad- what I was describing is how the Islam rep. describes it when asked about it- also most of the textbooks go with this description over the one you gave. As for Just War Doctrine- that was not their chosen term but it was my own given how they described the militant dimension to jihad- basically that a Muslim population has the right to defend themselves when attacked- which is how many feel about situations in the Middle East as in Israel/Palestine, Iraq, Afghanistan- they would say that the fighting was provoked by foreign invaders- and the only thing they regret are the terrorist responses against civilian targets. That is their side of things anyway- for me the issue of religious freedom/reciprocity is the one that they could not come up with any kind of decent response, and seem to be hiding from such a dialogue on that front- which is why I think it is important to put stress on it as I believe the Holy Father has strongly suggested-

    to gb- I’m not sure if I’m catching your drift- are you of the view that since the Church teaches that Jews and Muslims worship the same God as we do- despite not having an appreciation for the fullness of the truth of the Blessed Trinity- that this is syncretism- or am I missing your point?

  • CATECHISM, VATICAN COUNCIL II, EX CATHEDRA DOGMA AND CDF INDICATE ALL ROME’S MUSLIMS AND JEWS ARE ON THE WAY TO HELL

    The Catechism of the Catholic Church indicates that de facto non Catholics need to enter the Catholic Church for salvation. It also uses the word all (CCC 836) as does Vatican Council II (Ad Gentes 7).

    CCC 1257 affirms the dogma when it says that the Church knows of no means to eternal beatitude other than the baptism of water. This is a reference to explicit salvation for all with no known exceptions.

    CCC 1257 also says that for salvation God is not restricted to the Sacraments. This must not be interpreted as opposing the dogma or the earlier part of CCC 1257. This is a possibility, ‘in certain circumstances’ (Letter of the Holy Office 1949) and we cannot judge any specific cases.

    However, those, who through no fault of their own do not know either the Gospel of Christ or his Church, can achieve salvation by seeking God with a sincere heart and by trying to do God’s will (Second Vatican Council). Although God can lead all people to salvation, the Church still has the duty to evangelize all men.-CCC 848
    Those who are in invincible ignorance can be saved -and this does not conflict with the ex cathedra dogma that everyone with no exception needs to enter the Church to avoid Hell. It is a conceptual, de jure understanding.

    How do we understand this saying from the Church Fathers? All salvation comes from Christ through his Body, the Church which is necessary for salvation because Christ is present in his Church…-CCC846

    Here the Catechism places de jure and defacto salvation together. It does not conflict with the ex cathedra teaching that everyone with no exception needs to enter the Catholic Church .We cannot personally know any cases of a genuine invincible ignorance, baptism of desire or a good conscience.

    The Father wants to reunite all humanity into his Son’s Church. According to St. Augustine and St. Ambrose, the Church was prefigured by Noah’s ark, which alone saved the world from the flood.-CCC 845
    Here again we have an affirmation of the ex cathedra dogma, the infallible teaching that de facto everyone needs to enter the only Ark of Salvation.

    The dogma, the infallible teaching is that de facto every person needs to enter the Catholic Church, Jesus’ Mystical Body (Colossians) for salvation, with no exceptions, known to us. Pope Pius XII called it the infallible teaching (Letter of the Holy Office 1949).This would apply to non Catholics in Rome.

    If there are exceptions to the ordinary means of salvation which is the baptism of water and Catholic Faith it will be known to God only and Jesus only will judge. So in a sense mentioning it is irrelevant at the level of personal evangelisation personal contact with non-Catholics.

    All men are certainly called to this Catholic unity. The Catholic faithful, others who believe in Christ and all mankind belong to or are ordered to Catholic unity.-CCC 836
    Here again we have an affirmation of the ex cathedra dogma and the word all is used as in Ad Gentes 7.

    Here is the ex cathedra dogma extra ecclesiam nulla salus.

    1. “There is but one universal Church of the faithful, outside which no one at all is saved.” (Pope Innocent III, Fourth Lateran Council, 1215.).

    2. “We declare, say, define, and pronounce that it is absolutely necessary for the salvation of every human creature to be subject to the Roman Pontiff.” (Pope Boniface VIII, the Bull Unam Sanctam, 302.).

    3.“The most Holy Roman Church firmly believes, professes and preaches that none of those existing outside the Catholic Church, not only pagans, but also Jews and heretics and schismatics, can have a share in life eternal; but that they will go into the eternal fire which was prepared for the devil and his angels, unless before death they are joined with Her; and that so important is the unity of this ecclesiastical body that only those remaining within this unity can profit by the sacraments of the Church unto salvation, and they alone can receive an eternal recompense for their fasts, their almsgivings, their other works of Christian piety and the duties of a Christian soldier. No one, let his almsgiving be as great as it may, no one, even if he pour out his blood for the Name of Christ, can be saved, unless he remain within the bosom and the unity of the Catholic Church.” (Pope Eugene IV, the Bull Cantate Domino, 1441.) – from the website Catholicism.org and “No Salvation outside the Church”: Link List, the Three Dogmatic Statements Regarding EENS)
    The ex cathedra dogma does not say that ‘those who through no fault of their own do not know either the Gospel or Christ or his Church, or who have a sincere heart’ do not have to enter the Catholic Church to go to Heaven. Everyone has to enter the Church and there are no exceptions. This was the infallible teaching for centuries (Letter of the Holy Office 1949)

    However, those, who through no fault of their own do not know either the Gospel of Christ or his Church, can achieve salvation by seeking God with a sincere heart and by trying to do God’s will (Second Vatican Council). Although God can lead all people to salvation, the Church still has the duty to evangelize all men.-CCC 848
    It means that those who are the exceptions to the baptism of water are rare cases,’ in certain circumstances’, known only to God (Letter of the Holy Office 1949). We cannot judge. So the explicit salvation teaching for all to enter the Church, of the Catechism of the Catholic Church still holds. It is in accord with the dogma.

    The Catechism of the Catholic Church says all people need to enter the Catholic Church to go to Heaven, the Church is the only Ark of Noah that saves in the flood and the Catholic Church knows of no other means to eternal beatitude other than the Baptism of water (which is given to adults who have Catholic Faith).The Catechism says God wants all people to be united into the Catholic Church, it is in the Catholic Church that God wants all people to worship him. So this is a reference to the infallible teaching based on the Bible and Catholic Tradition. It is the teaching of the Magisterium of the past and today.

    Vatican Council II indicates that all Jews and Muslims in Rome and Italy are on the way to Hell. The Bible, the Church and Vatican Council II say Jews and Muslims need to convert into the Catholic Church to go to Heaven. All of them. Ad Gentes 7 says all people need Catholic Faith and the Baptism of water for salvation. All means everyone with no exceptions.

    Therefore, all must be converted to Him, made known by the Church’s preaching, and all must be incorporated into Him by baptism and into the Church which is His body. For Christ Himself “by stressing in express language the necessity of faith and baptism (cf. Mark 16:16; John 3:5), at the same time confirmed the necessity of the Church, into which men enter by baptism, as by a door.-Ad Gentes 7,Vatican Council II.
    Ad Gentes 7 says those who know about Jesus and the Catholic Church and yet do not enter are on the way to Hell. In Italy Muslims and Jews know about Jesus and the Catholic Church. It is a mortal sin of faith when they do not enter the Catholic Church.

    Therefore those men cannot be saved, who though aware that God, through Jesus Christ founded the Church as something necessary, still do not wish to enter into it, or to persevere in it.-Ad Gentes 7, Vatican Council II
    Whosoever, therefore, knowing that the Catholic Church was made necessary by Christ, would refuse to enter or to remain in it, could not be saved.-Lumen Gentium 14, Vatican Council II
    The Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, Vatican has positively endorsed the ex cathedra dogma extra ecclesiam nulla salus in Responses to Some questions regarding certain Aspects of the Doctrine of the Church in which it refers to ‘the traditional doctrine’, ‘according to Catholic doctrine’

    Cardinal William Levada, Prefect, Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith (CDF) and Archbishop Angelo Amato, former Secretary, CDF emphasize in Responses to Some questions regarding certain Aspects of the Doctrine of the Church:

    Christ “established here on earth” only one Church and instituted it as a “visible and spiritual community”, that from its beginning and throughout the centuries has always existed and will always exist, and in which alone are found all the elements that Christ himself instituted. “This one Church of Christ, which we confess in the Creed as one, holy, catholic and apostolic.

    This Church, constituted and organised in this world as a society, subsists in the Catholic Church, governed by the successor of Peter and the Bishops in communion with him”.]the word “subsists” can only be attributed to the Catholic Church alone precisely because it refers to the mark of unity that we profess in the symbols of the faith (I believe… in the “one” Church); and this “one” Church subsists in the Catholic Church.-Responses to Some Questions Regarding certain Aspects of the Doctrine on the Church.(June 29, 2007)
    So Responses to Some Questions Regarding certain Aspects of the Doctrine on the Church does not explain are understanding of Church (ecclesiology) as a break from Tradition and extra ecclesiam nulla salus.It repeats the message of Vatican Council II that the Church is a necessity for salvation (Ad Gentes 7, Lumen Gentium 14). We do not separate Jesus from the Church, even though elements of salvation can be present outside the visible boundaries of the church. De facto everyone needs to enter the Catholic Church; it is a necessity for salvation .All non-Catholics need to enter through the ordinary way of salvation which is the baptism of water and Catholic Faith. De facto everyone needs to enter the Church.

    De jure (conceptually, in theory, intellectually, in theology) we could debate or discuss exceptions to the need of salvation, those without the baptism of water. However these are exceptions known only to God. They are unknown to us. They are unknown to us since only Jesus can judge. He will decide.

    Responses states

    “It follows that these separated churches and Communities, though we believe they suffer from defects, are deprived neither of significance nor importance in the mystery of salvation. In fact the Spirit of Christ has not refrained from using them as instruments of salvation, whose value derives from that fullness of grace and of truth which has been entrusted to the Catholic Church”
    In ‘certain circumstances’ as Pope Pius XII states (Letter of the Holy Office 1949) those with implicit faith, those who are not Catholics ,can be saved (without Catholic Faith and the Baptism of water).So we cannot interpret ‘It follows that these separated churches and Communities….’ as referring to the ordinary way of salvation. Since only in ‘certain circumstances’; exceptionally and known to God only can members of separated Churches and communities be saved without Catholic Faith in the Catholic Church. The ordinary way of salvation is the baptism of water and Catholic Faith. For example the Catechism states that the Catholic Church knows of no way to eternal beatitude other than the baptism of water (given to adults with Catholic Faith). So this is the ordinary way. Yet CCC 1257 also says salvation is not limited to the Sacraments. So here we have the dejure, extraordinary reference to the exceptional means of salvation. In a way it is irrelevant to us since it will be judged only by Jesus.

    If ‘“It follows that these separated churches and Communities…’ was a reference to the ordinary way of salvation then it would contradict Vatican Council II. Since Ad Gentes 7, states “all people” need Catholic Faith and the Baptism of water for salvation. All.

    If de facto we know specifically, personally, that someone in ‘these separated churches and Communities’ can be saved, then it would contradict the dogma extra ecclesiam nulla salus.

    So dejure, conceptually we know “It follows that these separated churches and Communities, though we believe they suffer from defects, are deprived neither of significance nor importance in the mystery of salvation. In fact the Spirit of Christ has not refrained from using them as instruments of salvation, whose value derives from that fullness…’-is possible. De jure (conceptually, in theory, intellectually, in theology) we could debate or discuss this possibility.

    De facto it is clear that there are no exceptions to ‘ Christ “established here on earth” only one Church and instituted it as a “visible and spiritual community”, that from its beginning and throughout the centuries has always existed and will always exist, and in which alone are found all the elements that Christ himself instituted. “This one Church of Christ, which we confess in the Creed as one, holy, catholic and apostolic.

    De facto (in evangelising, in personal contact with non-Catholics) there is no one who specifically has the baptism of desire, who I know is in invincible ignorance or who I can judge has good conscience.

    We know that all Muslims and Jews in Rome need to enter the Catholic Church to avoid Hell. This has been Catholic teaching for centuries and it is affirmed in the Catechism of the Catholic Church, Vatican Council II, the ex cathedra dogma extra ecclesiam nulla salus, the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith document, besides other Church documents and the Bible.

  • The reason I think that the reciprocity of religious freedom is so important is not just so that the small/minority Christian populations may live to see another day- but also so that the Good News of Jesus Christ can lawfully be preached in order to fulfill Christ’s command to His disciples. We are obliged to preach the saving Gospel- yet we are not here to judge- that is Christ’s work- so we cannot go around asking folks- “Are you Saved?” for we are working out our own salvation in fear and trembling. Ours is to witness Christ and His Church to all people everywhere- and the fact that America has chosen to go about doing business as usual with two major nations that have zero respect for religious liberty and the freedom to preach Christ and Church- well that says a whole lot about the powers-that-be in this Land of ours. Of course, some Free Market ideologues will claim that doing business with tyrannical forces- giving mighty tithes to those powers and letting them set upon their own peoples to exploit their labor and “compete” against workers in other lands who have their freedom- that this is all part of God’s plan of free corporate enterprise.

    The question I have is when does engagement really just mask a selling off of your own ideals and morality in the name of Money- the love of which is the root of many evils??

  • Lionel, Vatican II states (in Lumen Gentium 16) that “those also can attain to salvation who through no fault of their own do not know the Gospel of Christ or His Church, yet sincerely seek God and moved by grace strive by their deeds to do His will as it is known to them through the dictates of conscience.”

    The same paragraph talks about Jews & Muslims having the possibility of salvation.

  • Another aspect in the dialog with the imam (assuming he’s interested in continuing it) is that Christianity does not compel its followers to force it upon others, nor does it say that we must prohibit other places of worship.

  • I’m not entirely on board with the idea that Christians and Muslims worship the same God. It would require divorcing God from his nature too much — how much of the Christian understanding of God has to do with the Trinity and Incarnation? If Muslims deny those doctrines outright, I don’t see how they’re actually worshipping the same God. The theology is too important to dismiss the differences.

  • ” During the class visits the question of terrorism and jihad always comes up and that isn’t the big problem for the Islamic representative as one might think. They distance themselves from an interpretation of the Qu’ran that allows for the killing of innocents- and jihad is usually described as an internal struggle inside each man’s heart for moral purity. Most Muslims seem to go along with a rough sketch of the Catholic Just War Doctrine, which allows them to support military “resistance” such as in Palestine and elsewhere, but not to agree with all the tactics of warfare conducted as such. Similar to what many Catholics would say about America’s involvement in World War II, but not agreeing that the dropping of nuclear bombs on civilian centers was legitmate. So much for that hot button issue. ”

    Very many mosques in the United States are influenced to a greater or lesser extent by Wahhabism. The great paradox is that whilst both the Republican and Democratic parties in the US, maintain the fiction that Saudi Arabia is an ally of the United States, Saudi Arabia is in fact a committed enemy of the United States.Wahhabism will not accept that any country that ever was under Muslim rule can be legitimately ruled by non-Muslims, it is as simple as that. Since both Spain and America are pledged to mutual defense under the NATO treaty, that from a Wahhabi perspective places America in a state of war with the Muslim Ummah, ( World Wide Muslim Community ),.

    It is inherently dangerous to use the word terrorism in discussion with Muslims, in the way the author of the article may well has used it, for the reason that Muslims who are committed to deception ” taqiyya ” of Christians and other non-Muslims have ample scope for word games in relation to the term ” terrorism “. For example, if asked about 9/11, they might say that they ” unreservedly condemn the terrorism, that occurred on 9/11 “, sounds good doesn’t it, what they could be saying is that they fully support aircraft having been hijacked and crashed in to the Twin Towers of the WTC, NYC, NY and they fully support an aircraft having been hijacked and crashed in to the Pentagon but condemn as an act of terrorism, attempts by the crew and passengers of United Airlines flight 93 to regain control of the aircraft from the hijackers. As regards ” innocents ” in war, one must understand that term within the context of the territorial claims of the Wahhabis, once the US does not recognize Spain as being a rightful part of Islamic territory, all Americans who do not reject the US Government’s position that Spain is not an Islamic territory become legitimate targets for military attacks. The difference between the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia and al-Qaeda is not one of theology and interpretation of Islam, it is one of tactics. The Saudi religious establishment believe for the present, that more can be achieved with respect to Islamic conquest, by infiltration and manipulation of the enemy through political, ideological, economic and psychological warfare techniques than simple military attacks, whilst al-Qaeda believe more conventional military insurgency techniques are appropriate at this time.

    Undercover Mosque the Return

    By the way with regard to the nuclear weapons used against Japan, it is arguable that more Japanese would have died if the US had sought to bring the war to a conclusion using conventional military methods.

  • Middle East oil is poisoning Western society, since for example the Saudis use a substantial part of their oil revenue to foster interpretations of Islam, which are antagonistic to Western liberal, ( that is ” liberal ” as used in British English, as is quite different to how the term is used in American English ), society. America needs to ramp up alternative energy technologies that will displace oil consumption. One of the arguments that the oil industry uses against supporters of renewables, is that they want people to live in huts, eat porridge and wear clothes made out of grass, simply not true, there is nothing of green freakery in for example sitting down in a restaurant car having a fine meal in a train cruising at 350 miles per hour which is being supplied with electricity by wind turbines.

    TGV world train speed record 3/4/2007 357mph English version

  • From the Catechism of the Catholic Church:

    •841 The Church’s relationship with the Muslims. “The plan of salvation also includes those who acknowledge the Creator, in the first place amongst whom are the Muslims; these profess to hold the faith of Abraham, and together with us they adore the one, merciful God, mankind’s judge on the last day.”[330]

    This is the basis for any fruitful dialogue- but without reciprocity of religious freedom we would be fools to participate in commerce and provide student visas for those who are serving the brand of Islam that would see the Saudi system of governance as ideal. In fact it is our substantial involvement with Saudi Arabia that actually provokes the bin Laden element- that along with the other biggie- support for Israel over the Palestinians. If our ties to the Saudi leadership was actually leading to religious freedom for Christianity in that country, it would be one thing, but our economic/political ties seem to have the added negative of encouraging the Saudi leaders to continue proving their Islamic bonafides by cracking down on anything non-Islamic and funding Mosques in Rome and supporting radical Islamic causes other than the ones directly targeting the Saudi leaders themselves. We totally played into this during the anti-Soviet era by encouraging Saudi money and Intelligence into Afghanistan-

    Let us do business with Muslim-Majority States that respect religious liberty and allow for Christian free speech and worship, and cut way back on ties with those Muslim States who don;t- this should be a big issue among Christians in this country- but the pragmatists and corporatists are the ones dominating the political and economic decisions.

  • ” Let us do business with Muslim-Majority States that respect religious liberty and allow for Christian free speech and worship, and cut way back on ties with those Muslim States who don;t- this should be a big issue among Christians in this country- but the pragmatists and corporatists are the ones dominating the political and economic decisions. ”

    Some people would argue that the above is a naive dogooder policy but it actually makes a lot of sense from a perspective of hard-nosed realpolitik, national security and the long term financial perspective. My view is that donations from Saudi Arabia to US mosques, educational establishments and pressure groups should attract substantial rates of US taxation and that the US Federal Government should have a discretionary power to withdraw tax exempt status from organizations which accept donations from Saudi Arabia.

    WELSH Guard plays “Darth Vader” for Saudi King

  • Chris we cannot interpret LG 16 as de facto salvation. This would be heresy. It would contradict the ex cathedra dogma extra ecclesiam nulla salus and Ad Gentes7 and CCC 836.
    Also there is no de facto baptism of desire that we can know of.Only God can judge cases of implicit faith.
    The popes and Councils knew about implciit faith (baptisms of desire,invincible ignorance etc) and did not interpret it as de facto but de jure salvation. Something we accept in principle, de jure, as a concept, ‘in certain circumstances'(Letter of the Holy Office 1949) and known only to God.

    [youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3tgICQ9ErVs&hl=it_IT&fs=1&]

  • Tim,
    It is true that we worship the One Creator but the Church teaches that Islam is not a path to salvation and there is no theology which can say that Islam is a path for its members to go to Heaven(CDF, Notification on Fr.Jacques Dupuis s.j 2001).

    There are good things in Islam but there is also the Arian heresy and they are not free from Original Sin.

    Here is a video of a Rosiminian priest in Rome, who celebrates the Novus Ordo Mass in Italian, saying that every Muslim needs to be a visible member of the Catholic Church to go to Heaven.

    [youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YZxeMPNclKU&hl=it_IT&fs=1&]

  • Joseph,
    It is true we Catholics do not force our religion upon others but we do not have the obligation in dialogue, in mutual sharing, to say that Muslims are oriented to Hell according to Vatican Council II, the Catechism of the Catholic Church and the ex cathedra dogma extra ecclesiam nulla salus.
    God wants every Muslim to worship Him in the Catholic Church(CCC) and the Church know of no way to eternal beatitude other than the baptism of water (CCC 1257) given to Catholics with adult faith.
    Here is a video of Catholic priests, who celebrate Mass in Italian and affirm Vatican Council II, also endorsing the dogmatic teachings of the Church.

    [youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LbWzbKLBu8s&hl=it_IT&fs=1&]

  • ” During the class visits the question of terrorism and jihad always comes up and that isn’t the big problem for the Islamic representative as one might think. They distance themselves from an interpretation of the Qu’ran that allows for the killing of innocents- and jihad is usually described as an internal struggle inside each man’s heart for moral purity. ”

    Anjem Choudary ONLY Muslim are Innocent rest can be Killed

  • I would like to point out that those whom submit to God’s will are called Muslims and their religion is called Islam. Not moslems, moslemism or Mohammedism written in the comments. Muslims do not worship Mohammed (Peace be upon him) nor do Muslims believe he is the founder of Islam. The name Islam and Muslims is what God calls in the Quran, it is not a religion named after a man.

    Muslims believe in Jesus (peace be upon him). They also worship the same God. And regarding why muslims believe Jesus (peace be upon him) is a prophet, and not Son of God or God, is answered in the following links.

    Prophet Jesus and Muhammad (Peace be upon them) in the Holy Quran and Previous Scriptures
    http://theradiantlight.blogspot.com/

    Islam
    http://www.islamreligion.com/

    Prophet Mohammed (peace be upon him)
    http://www.rasoulallah.net/

    Quran Tafseer/Explanation meaning
    http://www.searchtruth.com/tafsir/tafsir.php?chapter=1

    By a German diplomat
    http://teachislam.com/dmdocuments/Muhammad_Aman_Hobohm_Islams_Answer_to_Racial_Problem.pdf

    Ihope this comment clear all the wrong misconceptions and stereotypes associated with Islam and its association with terrorism. I encourage you to research the islamic websites provided when obtaining information, and not anti-islamic websites and productions which feed your mind and others with incorrect information and hatred. Those whom produce Anti-Islamic/offensive productions inevitably intend to incite and provoke unrest and intolerance among people of different religious beliefs, and to jeopardize world peace and stability. Hidden under the cover of freedom of expression.

    It says in your scripture “blessed are the peacemakers” I hope there will be better understanding between Jews, Christians and Muslims for peaceful co-existance. We should all be increasing peaceful dialouge, not fueling hatred and extremism.

    …………………….

    Islam is Peace
    Was Islam Spread by the Sword?
    http://www.islamreligion.com/articles/677/

    The Tolerance of the Prophet (peace be upon him) towards Other Religions
    http://www.islamreligion.com/articles/207/viewall/

    Let There Be No Compulsion in Religion
    http://www.islamreligion.com/articles/661/

    The Rights of Non-Muslims in Islam
    http://www.islamreligion.com/articles/374/viewall/

    What Does Islam say About Terorrism
    http://www.islamreligion.com/articles/238 /

  • Were one to compare Vatican city to Mecca and/or Medina, then one is comparing apples-to-apples, except that non-Muslims may not visit those two cities, while anyone can visit the Vatican City.

    I have very few kind things to say or think about Islam, or the Prophet Muhammed. I would not think a thing, however, about a ban on Christian worship, mission or construction in Mecca or Medina. It is rank sophistry, however, for the Iman to compare all of the K.S.A. to Vatican City.

    But then puerile sophistry is par for the course with Islam.

  • Adrian/tryptic

    CATECHISM AND VATICAN COUNCIL II ENDORSE MESSAGE IN CATHEDRAL OF BOLOGNA PAINTING

    The Catechism of the Catholic Church and Vatican Council II indicate that Mohammad was not saved and was oriented to Hell barring the exceptional. The religion he founded-the Catholic Church and the Bible indicates, is not a path to salvation. The Last Judgment by Giovanni da Modena, is a 15 th century fresco in the cathedral of San Petronio, Bologna it shows the Prophet Muhammad being cast into the flames of Hell. This is relevant for inter religious dialogue.

    Catholics do not accept Mohammad as a prophet, nor Islam as a path to salvation. Muslims in general, according to the teachings of Jesus Christ, need Catholic Faith and Baptism to go to Heaven. They need to be baptized in the only Church Jesus founded, to reap the benefits of His Great Sacrifice for all people, Muslims included.

    This is the mercy of God the Father. He provided a way for all people, even before the time of Abraham, to go to Heaven, through the Supreme Sacrifice of His Son Jesus Christ.

    PONTIFICIAL COUNCIL FOR INTER RELIGIOUS DIALOGUE, VATICAN

    Islam is not a path to salvation and Muslims need Catholic Faith and Baptism to go to Heaven said Father Felix Muchado, Former Secretary, Council for Inter Religious Dialogue (PCID), Vatican. He was speaking with me at the PCID office near St. Peter’s Square on Tuesday (26.02.2008) morning. He was asked if non-Catholic religions (Hinduism, Buddhism, and Islam etc) are not paths to salvation (i.e. to go to Heaven and avoid Hell).He said YES.

    Do non-Catholics need Catholic Faith and Baptism in general, except for the exceptions, to go to Heaven and avoid Hell, he was asked. He answered yes. This was not mentioned in a triumphal sense or with hatred. It was a matter of fact statement.

    Archbishop Angelo Amato, Secretary, Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith (CDF), Vatican in an interview in the Italian daily Avvenire has emphasised the importance of Catholic Mission. He quoted the text from the Council Ad Gentes 7, Lumen Gentium 14) which says:

    ˜All must be incorporated into Him by baptism, and into the Church which is His body. For Christ Himself explicit terms affirmed the necessity of faith and baptism (cf.Mk.16:16; Jn.3:5) and thereby affirmed also the necessity of the Church, for through baptism (cf.Mk.16:16; Jn.3:5) and thereby affirmed also the necessity of the Church, for through baptism as through a door men enter the Church.

    He was interviewed at the Salesian University, Rome by Gianni Cardinale (Amato: non ce Chiesa senza missione, March 8, 2008, Saturday p. 21, Catholica, Avvenire).

    Archbishop Angelo Amato, CDF, Sec., Vatican was saying that Judaism without the Jewish Savior is not a path to salvation and all Jews in general, need the baptism of water and Catholic Faith.

    MONS.RAFFAELLO MARTINELLI: ISLAM NOT PATH TO SALVATION
    Islam is not a path to salvation and their members need Baptism and Catholic Faith to avoid Hell said Mons. Raffaello Martinelli at his residence on the Via del Corso, on the solemn feast day of the Blessed Virgin Mary the Mother of God (Jan1, 2008).

    Mons. Raffaello has since 1980 been working with the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith (CDF), Vatican. For the last 23 years he has assisted Cardinal Ratzinger, now Pope Benedict XVI. Mons. Raffaello was also a coordinator in the preparation of the Catechism of the Catholic Church.The Archpriest (Primicerio) of the exquisite Basilica dei Ambrogio e Carlo al Corso in Rome he said that the Catholic Church teaches that Islam is not a path to salvation but Muslims can be saved, who are in invincible ignorance and those who die in good faith.

    “Are they saved through their religion?” he was asked to clarify. He answered no. Their religion does not save them.

    “Do they need to enter the Catholic Church to go to Heaven and avoid Hell?”

    He answered yes.

    All Muslims, he said, are called (by God) to enter the Catholic Church.

    He was asked if they are simply just called (optional) to enter the Catholic Church, through the baptism of water, or, are they called to enter the Catholic Church to avoid Hell. He answered that they are called to enter the Catholic Church to avoid Hell.

    The Catholic Church is the Body of Christ he said. The Church is the general, normal way to be saved.

    He made the distinction between the ordinary and extraordinary means of salvation.

    The Church, the Body of Christ is the ordinary means of salvation. So the Baptism of water is needed for all people in general. However through the extraordinary means of salvation Muslims can be saved within Islam. They too are saved by Jesus Christ.

    “Who are these exceptions, saved implicitly through the extraordinary means of salvation?” he said, we do not know. We cannot judge. Only Jesus knows. We cannot say that a particular person is in invincible ignorance, has good faith etc. We humans cannot judge.

    NON CATHOLICS GOING TO HELL DEFINITELY-VATICAN COUNCIL II

    Yet Lumen Gentium N.14 is clear that those non-Catholics who know they should be in the Catholic Church and who have had the Gospel preached to them, and yet do not do so, will go to Hell.

    The Compendium of the Catechism of the Catholic Church and Vatican Council II refer to these non-Catholics going to Hell, definitely.

    We do not know who is in partial communion or full communion, we do not know who is in invincible ignorance or has perfect contrition or has a good conscience-only Jesus does.

    When we meet a Hindu, Buddhist or Muslim we assume that he or she is not saved, not because we know personally but because the Church inspired by the Holy Spirit tells us so.

    So would Mohammad come under the category of exceptions? No. Since he knew. He knew about the Catholic Faith.This is seen in the Koran. He chose not to enter the Catholic Church and formed a new religion. Interestingly, Muslims still pray that he may have peace.

    Jesus however is saying that those Muslims who believe will be saved, those who do not will be condemned (Mk.16: 15-16, Jn.3:5)

    The condemnation is to Hell. It was Dante who described the Inferno he saw.

    Mohammad was among the many people whom the Italian poet Dante Alighieri saw in Hell.

    DANTES EXPERIENCE OF HELL SIMILAR TO CATHOLIC SAINTS

    Dante saw Hell with caves and special tortures for different people. There was fire and water, demons and the presence of Satan. He saw suffering which would never ever end in time. The Catholic saints Teresa of Avila and Maria Faustina Kowalski also describe Hell similarly. Dante’s experience of Hell can also be compared with Sr. Josepha Menendez. It is similar to Hell shown by Our Lady to Sr. Lucia at Fatima.

    The Catholic saints were permitted by God to see Hell while they were alive and were allowed to tell the world about it.

    Dante’s vision was contemplation, said Mons.Marco Frisina, during a series of talks on the Divine Comedy of Dante, given at the Basilica dei Ambrogio e Carlo al Corso, Rome.

    After one of the talks, I spoke to him about the visions of the Catholic saints and how they were similar to that of Dante.

    I asked him, “Was it just contemplation or did Dante really go to Hell?”

    He replied, “Non lo so” (I don’t know)

    Unlike Dante the Catholic saints do not name names. St. Maria Faustina Kowalski recognized in Hell, people whom she knew. So did Sr.Josepha Menendez.

    Most of them in Hell said St. Faustina were really surprised to be there. Surprised! They expected to be in Heaven, once past the Particular Judgment. Were there were those who thought it was enough to be a Jew or Muslim?

    St. Faustina Kowalski and Dante saw demons in Hell and Satan being present to torment the people sent there. St. Teresa of Avila noted the dirty water with reptiles, so did Dante. They both observed there were special places and caves for the demons to torture people forever. Josepha Menendez saw people tortured in a special way in the parts of the body, which they used to sin. So did the Polish saint Maria Kowalska. This was what Dante saw and described.

    Sr. Lucia saw people amidst fire. Dante described many realms with fire. The Bible and the sacred books of other religions also list fire in Hell. However Dante is more explicit and covers a large range of the specific suffering in Hell. Sr. Lucia seemed to be shown, by Our Lady, just one area.

    The Catholic Church tells us that a category of non Christians will go to Hell. That non Christians can go to Hell is clearly said in Vatican Council II and the Compendium of the Catechism of the Catholic Church.

    Jesus cautions us about Hell in the New Testament. The road to Hell is wide and many take it He said. This warning was His love for us. The Old Testament and the Psalms have many references to Hell. Isaiah (33) asks who can withstand a devouring fire for eternity. The Quran refers often to Hell.

    The message of Vatican Council II and the Catechism of the Catholic Church is that those non Catholics who have had the Gospel preached to them and who know that the Catholic Church is the one, true Church of God, founded by His Son Jesus Christ, and who yet do not enter through baptism and Catholic Faith will go to Hell (they cannot be saved).

    Whosoever, therefore, knowing that the Catholic Church was made necessary by God through Jesus Christ would refuse to enter her or to remain in her could not be saved. – Decree on the Missionary activity of the Church, Ad Gentes # 7, Vatican Council II

    Mohammad knew about Jesus Christ and the Church Jesus founded. This is clear in the Quran. Yet he refused to enter it. He had the Gospel preached to him. His soul, Catholic teaching indicates is oriented towards Hell.

    Many Muslims who have had the Gospel preached to them, who know that God the Father founded his only Church through his Son Jesus Christ. They know that they need to join this saving-Church because this is what God wants of them. Yet they do not do so. They are oriented towards the Inferno at the time of their death.

    The Bible and the Catechism say that just one mortal sin at the time of death, is enough for a soul to go to eternal death. Muslims, do not have the help of the Catholic Sacraments.

    And whosoever shall keep the whole law but offend in one point is become guilty of all. For he that said: Thou shalt not commit adultery, said also: Thou shalt not kill. Now if thou do not commit adultery, but shalt kill, thou art become a transgressor of the law. (James 2:10-11). (Douay-Rheims Bible)

    So there are not only Mortal sins of Faith, which is relevant to Mohammad, but there are also Mortal Sins of morals. The Church specifies which are the mortal sins e.g. committing or encouraging murder-abortion, euthanasia, fornication, homosexuality, fornication.

    There are many Muslims who believe that they are doing good and have a good conscience. With mortal sins of faith and morals they are oriented to Hell, while living as Muslims. This is not what God wants of them.

    The Catholic Church teaches us that the religion Muhammad founded has good things but it is not a path to heaven. It also has errors and deficiencies (Dominus Iesus). It carries the fourth century Arian heresy which denies Jesus is God. It denies the Trinity and the Crucifixion of Jesus.

    THE CATHOLIC CHURCH DOES NOT CONDEMN ANY PROPHET OR RELIGION

    The Catholic Church, however, does not officially name any particular person in Hell. It does not even say that Judas is in Hell (or Heaven) even though Scripture indicates that Judas’ soul is cursefreesite in Hell.

    One can appreciate many good and holy things in the religion Muhammad founded.

    This report here hence is not a condemnation of Muhammad and Islam. Neither does the Catholic Church condemn either.

    The sin of heresy however is a Mortal Sin.

    ‘…those who do not believe will be condemned’ says Jesus (Mk.16:15-16).

    They have chosen their condemnation. They have chosen eternal death. Muhammad, like Gandhi knew about the Catholic Faith. They chose otherwise.

    Muhammad, like Gandhi, was born with Original Sin. Muhammad carried the image of Adam (1 Cor.15:45-49).Through Baptism ‘we bear the image of the heavenly one’- Jesus. Muhammad died with the stain of Original Sin. He could not say that Jesus is Lord. He who cannot say that Jesus is Lord is the Antichrist the Bible says.

    Muhammad’s concept of Heaven is not that of Christians. St. Faustina Marie Kowalski describes her vision of Heaven which is Trinitarian. (N.777Diary). She described Paradise where Catholics are in happiness, amidst great beauty and give praise and glory to the One Triune God. It is a place of pure love for God without the presence of evil. (Whatever ones religion or lack of it, if one is saved it is through Jesus and the Catholic Church, one is a Catholic in Heaven).

    VATICAN COUNCIL SAYS ISLAM NOT PATH TO SALVATION

    Vatican Council II actually says that Judaism, Islam and the other religions are not paths to salvation. (Ad Gentes 7) Their followers need Catholic Faith and Baptism in general, to avoid Hell (Lumen Gentium 14).

    The Council asks us to have “a high regard” for the precepts and doctrines of these religions “which often reflect a ray of that truth which enlightens all men” (Nostra Aetate, N.2), but does not anywhere say that these elements are sufficient for salvation.’-Extra Ecclesiam nulla salus, Christ to the World (1981)

    Not to believe in the one God as in Catholic Revelation is idol worship. It is contrary to the First Commandment. Idol worship is to make ones ego a god. It is to make ones badly-formed conscience god (CCC 2104, 2105, 2113, and 2114).It is choosing to worship as one wants to, personally, and not as God wants to be worshipped. We can choose to make television, or the editorial in a particular newspaper are idol, our god. Muslims can choose to stay within their religion, and circle the stone Kaaba, in a religious pilgrimage, in Saudi Arabia.

    REFUSAL OF THE EUCHARIST FOR FIRST CLASS HERESY

    Muslims who know the truth about the Catholic Church and yet choose to remain in the religion Mohammad founded are in heresy. Heresy is a grave sin (CCC#2088).Persistent grave sin; with full knowledge is a Mortal Sin.

    A Catholic in persistent Mortal sin, known to many people, can be refused the Eucharist. It means the loss of Sanctifying Grace. Heresy on this issue, means giving up the right to receive the Eucharist. For a Catholic religious it is giving up the right to celebrate Holy Mass or to canonically hold an office as a Catholic.

    Muslims cannot receive the Holy Eucharist.

    We appreciate all the good and holy things inIslam which are a preparation for the Gospel and entry into the Catholic Church.(Notification,CDF,Dupuis 2001).God loves Muslims.

  • Adrian,
    The Youtube video of Choudry shows that Islam says the same as the Catholic Church, only we said it some 500 plus years before them.We do not advocate violence and war and do not force are Catholic beliefs on any one.
    However the Church does teach that everyone needs to be a member of the Mystical Body of Jesus to go to Heaven and avoid Hell.It is the will of God that everyone be united in the Catholic Church(CCC). The Church is the only Ark of Noah that saves in the flood(CCC),the Church can be compared to a Door in which all must enter for salvation(CCC/Church Fathers).

  • Tim/T.Shaw
    We do not personally say that anyone is going to Hell because we personally know- we don’t. However the Magisterium says that the Imam is on the way to Hell.Since he is educated and knows about the Church and yet does not enter.(Vatican Council II).He also has Original Sin and is oriented to Hell (Ex Cathedra, extra ecclesiam nulla salus).
    So in dialogue would you tell the Imam that the Church teaches that he is oriented to Hell fires?

    [youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=p1KXFspkG4Y&hl=it_IT&fs=1&]

    [youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HjJRCIHNqc4&hl=it_IT&fs=1&]

  • ” The Youtube video of Choudry shows that Islam says the same as the Catholic Church, only we said it some 500 plus years before them.We do not advocate violence and war and do not force are Catholic beliefs on any one. ”

    Dear Lionel Andrades I am well aware that the thinking of the Catholic Church, ( or at least a good part of it ), during the era of the 15th Century had much similarity to the opinions of Mr Choudary but the way you have written your posting makes it ambigious as to whether the Catholic Church has abandoned the position that it is okay to kill people simply because they do not accept elements of Christian theology, for example the divinity of Jesus, when the reality is that the Catholic Church has abandoned enforcing Catholic orthodoxy on others through the sword.

  • Adrian

    We affirm the same orthodoxy as the 15th century(extra ecclesiam nulla salus) but we do not force people to accept our views, neither do we advocate violence.

  • If an adherent of a particular religion, wishes to claim that this or that individual or this or that group will burn in hell fire for all eternity, that is often in of itself of little concern to me. Where it starts to get problematic is in faiths, that do not leave it go to God dispense justice in such matters. This is a particular problem in Islam.

  • Adrian

    Islam believes in Hell with fire just like Catholics. They also believe all of us non Muslims are going there. So they conduct Mission(dawah) to convert us.
    Some do it peacefully others through violence.
    We also believe that Muslims are oriented to Hell unless they convert.So we proclaim are faith peacefully and can even expect to be killed.
    God will dispense justice of course, Hell or Heaven however we still proclaim the hard truths of the Catholic Faith.

  • But not all of us Catholics have the same view on Islam.
    Joan Lewis is the Bureau Chief of EWTN in Rome and over the last few years I have been asking her three questions about Catholic Mission and Salvation and she will not answer them. She can also be heard on Radio Vatican which continues the slander on Fr. Leonard Feeney implying all of us Catholics who agree with him are also heretics.

    To reject the ex cathedra dogma extra ecclesiam nulla salus is a mortal sin. So how can Joan Lewis receive the Eucharist at the Church of Santa Susanna Rome and worse still also be a Eucharistic Minister?

    It is possible becaue of the Rector of Santa Susanna Fr.Gregory Apparel, a Paulist Father. In a homily he openly rejected the dogma extra ecclesiam nulla salus and cited Vatican Council II.After I corresponded with him via e-mail he asked me to stop coming to that Church.

    Joan Lewis would also give the Eucharist to John Allen, a former member of the Church praish council. Allen, at the National Catholic Reporter has rejected the dogma and supported homosexuality,syncretism and other evils.It is all there in public.

    EWTN has a similar policy as the Vatican Radio English Service. Even the Vatican Radio Press Service has been issuing press releases as if they have received a special dispensation from the Church to reject the extra cathdra dogma extra ecclesiam nulla salus. The rejection of Church teachings and the criticism of the Catholic Church is familiar on Radio Vatican (English).
    They could politey tell you that the Imam does not have to convert.

  • To “World Peace”-

    I’m inclined to give you the space to defend Islam- in fact I think it fair to allow all religions to speak their piece- even go door-to-door to hand out literature or attempt to start a conversation with anybody on the questions that are the most important in life- Is there a God? Has He revealed Himself? What truths have been conveyed from Above? This freedom to speak and share- as long as there is no pressure or harassment conveyed- is what I call religious liberty- along with the right to worship and display articles of one’s faith on their property and selves- this is the whole point of my posting.

    Catholicism promotes religious liberty even as She preaches that the Church has the fullness of the Truth- the fact that Jesus Christ will come again and judge the living and the dead- and so forth- there is no contradiction in holding these two concepts- one that everyone should have religious liberty and two that God has revealed Himself and we have the obligation to preach the Good News in good weather and bad. The United States and most of Europe seems to allow for these two actions to occur simultaneously. Respecting individual consciences and respecting religious adherents to practice and preach their beliefs in public and private- with only minimal interference ideally.

    The problem I would address to “World Peace” is the seeming difficulty in the lack of reciprocity in some key Islamic dominate nations such as Saudi Arabia- if Christians are not free to do what I detail above in Saudi Arabia- why should we allow Islamic adherents to increase in numbers here in the U.S. or receive student visas, and profit mightily from an economic relationship- when the preaching and teachings of Jesus Christ are banned from the lands of Islamic dominance? If Islamic adherents were to be working toward ushering in an era of true religious freedom in their homelands- that would seem to merit a healthy presence in our country- but without that one must be concerned that if or when the numbers change and Islamic adherents become a majority here in the U.S.- would we see a push toward turning the U.S. into a replica Saudi legal state? I prefer not to have to worry about all this- and the situation would be easily rectified if Saudi Arabia and other such states would move in the direction of respecting religious freedom- there are plenty of foreign workers in Saudi Arabia, and I imagine that there are Saudi citizens who are Christians but who fear criminal charges for coming out as Christian. Here in the U.S. Christians converts to Islam are in no way targeted by the laws of our land- why not put your respect for our Christian faith into real terms by proclaiming the need for religious freedom in Saudi Arabia et al? This would be a necessary first step in ensuring that any kind of positive dialogue could take place- otherwise you can speak all you want of the wonderful qualities of Islam but if in fact Islamic nations have zero tolerance for Christian expression, there is no reason for Christians to pursue good faith dialogue with those who apparently do not have the good sense to actually respect our lives and consciences.

  • One question I would posit based upon (CCC 846-848)

    846 How are we to understand this affirmation, often repeated by the Church Fathers? Re-formulated positively, it means that all salvation comes from Christ the Head through the Church which is his Body:

    Basing itself on Scripture and Tradition, the Council teaches that the Church, a pilgrim now on earth, is necessary for salvation: the one Christ is the mediator and the way of salvation; he is present to us in his body which is the Church. He himself explicitly asserted the necessity of faith and Baptism, and thereby affirmed at the same time the necessity of the Church which men enter through Baptism as through a door. Hence they could not be saved who, knowing that the Catholic Church was founded as necessary by God through Christ, would refuse either to enter it or to remain in it.

    847
    This affirmation is not aimed at those who, through no fault of their own, do not know Christ and his Church:

    Those who, through no fault of their own, do not know the Gospel of Christ or his Church, but who nevertheless seek God with a sincere heart, and, moved by grace, try in their actions to do his will as they know it through the dictates of their conscience—those too may achieve eternal salvation.

    848
    “Although in ways known to himself God can lead those who, through no fault of their own, are ignorant of the Gospel, to that faith without which it is impossible to please him, the Church still has the obligation and also the sacred right to evangelize all men.

    I would argue that the question of salvation turns on the question of the knowledge or lack thereof and possessed by Muslims concerning the Gospel of Christ or his Church, and the extent to which, their ignorance is vincible or invincible in nature As Pius IX pointed out in paragraph seven (7) of

    7. Here, too, our beloved sons and venerable brothers, it is again necessary to mention and censure a very grave error entrapping some Catholics who believe that it is possible to arrive at eternal salvation although living in error and alienated from the true faith and Catholic unity. Such belief is certainly opposed to Catholic teaching. There are, of course, those who are struggling with invincible ignorance about our most holy religion. Sincerely observing the natural law and its precepts inscribed by God on all hearts and ready to obey God, they live honest lives and are able to attain eternal life by the efficacious virtue of divine light and grace. Because God knows, searches and clearly understands the minds, hearts, thoughts, and nature of all, his supreme kindness and clemency do not permit anyone at all who is not guilty of deliberate sin to suffer eternal punishments. Quanto Conficiamur Moerore 10 August 1863 which was reaffirmed in paragraph twenty-three of Mystici Corporis Christi dated 29 June 1943

    23. Nor must one imagine that the Body of the Church, just because it bears the name of Christ, is made up during the days of its earthly pilgrimage only of members conspicuous for their holiness, or that it consists only of those whom God has predestined to eternal happiness. It is owing to the Savior’s infinite mercy that place is allowed in His Mystical Body here below for those whom, of old, He did not exclude from the banquet.[20] For not every sin, however grave it may be, is such as of its own nature to sever a man from the Body of the Church, as does schism or heresy or apostasy. Men may lose charity and divine grace through sin, thus becoming incapable of supernatural merit, and yet not be deprived of all life if they hold fast to faith and Christian hope, and if, illumined from above, they are spurred on by the interior promptings of the Holy Spirit to salutary fear and are moved to prayer and penance for their sins.Mystici Corporis Christi dated 29 June 1943

    We as Catholics must tread carefully when speaking of extra ecclesiam nulla salus. because Pope Pius XII excommunicated Rev. Leonard Feeney 13 February 1953 for adopting a position that was to rigid on the subject. Even though the excommunication was lifted some twenty years later it instructive in the sense that it demonstrates the danger that exists in adopting absolutist positions.

  • Nathan:

    There is no Church document which says that Pope Pius XI excommunicated Fr. Leonard Feeney for heresy. The Letter of the Holy Office (1949) during the pontificate of Pope Pius XI refers to disobedience to Church authorities. The Letter mentions extra ecclesiam nulla salus as ‘the dogma’ and the ‘infallible teaching’.
    Here is the dogma, the infallible teaching.

    1. “There is but one universal Church of the faithful, outside which no one at all is saved.” (Pope Innocent III, Fourth Lateran Council, 1215.).
    2. “We declare, say, define, and pronounce that it is absolutely necessary for the salvation of every human creature to be subject to the Roman Pontiff.” (Pope Boniface VIII, the Bull Unam Sanctam, 302.).
    3.“The most Holy Roman Church firmly believes, professes and preaches that none of those existing outside the Catholic Church, not only pagans, but also Jews and heretics and schismatics, can have a share in life eternal; but that they will go into the eternal fire which was prepared for the devil and his angels, unless before death they are joined with Her; and that so important is the unity of this ecclesiastical body that only those remaining within this unity can profit by the sacraments of the Church unto salvation, and they alone can receive an eternal recompense for their fasts, their almsgivings, their other works of Christian piety and the duties of a Christian soldier. No one, let his almsgiving be as great as it may, no one, even if he pour out his blood for the Name of Christ, can be saved, unless he remain within the bosom and the unity of the Catholic Church.” (Pope Eugene IV, the Bull Cantate Domino, 1441.)
    There cannot be two positions about the dogma, there is no rigid and non rigid position, there is no absolute and non absolute position, a dogma is a dogma.
    As can be seen from the dogma above Pope Pius XI was saying that every Jew (and Muslim) in Boston needs to convert to avoid Hell.
    The Jewish Left media refer to the rigorist interpretation of the dogma (as if there can be two interpretations) but that is their political position. The stuff of Wikipedia and the New York Times.
    The Catechism and Vatican Council II are in accord with the dogma.
    CCC 847 says all people are saved by Jesus and the Catholic Church. It includes those saved explicitly and those implicitly. It does not rule out everyone de facto having to enter the Church for salvation.
    CCC 847 like Lumen Gentium 16 mentions those who can be saved with implicit faith and who are known only to God. There are no de facto cases of invincible ignorance or the baptism of desire that we can judge or really know of. So 847 does not refer to de facto salvation and is not in contradiction to the dogma. It is a reference to de jure salvation, something we accept in principle and is possible ‘in certain circumstances’ (Letter of the Holy Office 1949).
    CCC 848 refers to those saved in invincible ignorance and who are known only to God.
    If salvation depends in particular cases on one’s knowledge or lack of it, in a Muslim, then this is acceptable in principle, de jure and will be judged only by God. The dogma and Ad Gentes 7 says all Muslims, everyone, need to enter the Church to avoid Hell.
    We do not know for example how many Muslims in Rome have the baptism of desire or are in invincible ignorance. However Ad Gentes 7 indicates that they are all on the way to Hell since they know about the Catholic Church and yet do not enter.
    Neither can we say that invincible ignorance and the baptism of desire is the general means of salvation for all Muslims and Jews.The church corrected ‘the theology of religions’ being proposed by the late Fr. Jacques Dupuis S.J (Notification, CDF, 2001)
    After every thing is said and done, debated and argued we have the dogma clear before us.

  • Tim,
    There are blasphemy laws in Pakistan and other Muslim countries.Does the Imam condemn it in public ?

  • Lionel,

    I respectfully disagree Rev. Feeny was excommunicated on 13 February 1953 as proof of his excommunication I submit the declaration of excommunication

    100 Acta Apostolicae Sedis – Commentarium Officiale

    ACTA SS. CONGREGATIONUM SUPREMA SACRA CONGREGATIO S. OFFICII DECRETUM SACERDOS LEONARDUS PEENEY EXCOMMUNICATUS DECLARATUR

    Cum sacerdos Leonardus Feeney, Bostonii (Saint Benedict Center) residens, qui propter graviter denegatam oboedientiam Auctoritati Ecclesiasticae
    a divinis iamdudum suspensus fuerat, non obstantibus iteratis monitionibus et excommunicationis ipso facto incurrendae comminatione, non resipuerit, Emi ac Revmi Patres rebus fidei ac morum tutandis praepositi, in Plenario Conventu Feriae IV, habito die 4 Februarii 1953, eundem excommunicatum cum omnibus iuris effectibus declaraverunt.
    Feria autem V, die 12 Februarii 1953, Ssmus D. N. D. Pius Divina Providentia Papa XII Emorum Patrum decretum adprobavit, confirmavit atque publici iuris fieri iussit.
    Datum Romae, ex Aedibus S. Officii, die xin Februarii a. MCMLIII.
    Marius Crovini, Notarius

  • Lionel, I never said Father Feeny was excommuicated for heresy. I know that he was excommunicated not for heresy but for grave, continuing disobiedence and refusal to submit to Ecclesiastical Authority as demonstrated above. His disobiedience originated with his refusal to conform to the position taken by the Ecclesiastical Authority on the subject of extra ecclesiam nulla salus.

  • We have to avoid the Fundamentalist Christian trap of claiming to full well know God’s will in deciding any particular individual’s ultimate destiny. Church teachings indicate that only Christ can Judge such things- and we believe that Christ is the one who judges all individuals- He is not our personal jesus, He belongs to everyone – or more accurately everyone belongs to Him. We also know that salvation is mysteriously worked out through the Church of Christ which subsists in the Catholic Church, which is the Mystical Body of Christ. We know that there are explicit members of good standing who are knowingly and wittingly Catholic, and we know that there are individuals below the age of reason who are nevertheless baptised Christians, and we know through reason and Church teachings that there are those who are separated from God by mortal sin- who are inside and outside of the visible structures of the Catholic Church.

    We also know that there must be an element of “knowing” of one’s sin, and “knowing” that the Catholic Church is really and truly the One, True Church- these elements are where the mystery of each man’s heart and mind kicks in. We should not presuppose that someone is a good sort and is definitely going to or is in heaven, and we should make the automatic opposite assumption that someone is definitely heading to hell- with no qualifiers- just a plain certainty that this or that fellow is going or is in hell. The Pope doesn’t even allow that Judas is for certain in hell- we know that hell exists, we know that Jesus warns of it and many parables suggest that there are many who end up there- but again the bottom line on ultimate status is one that is best left to Jesus Christ Himself. It is hard enough to sort out an official Saint of the Church.

    Now we are obliged to share the Good News with everyone, never assuming that a non-Catholic is necessarily such a good sort that they are heaven-bound no matter their beliefs concerning the Catholic faith. We have a duty to preach the Gospel in season and out. We can allow that children raised in non-Catholic or “bad” Catholic homes will have a more difficult journey when you take in the truth that we are all to honor our mothers and fathers, and when we are led astray by those who are put here to give us the best possible helps- well that makes for a confusing situation- add to that growing up in a society where nearly or very definitely everyone is a non-believer, or an adherent of a different religion, then you can start to appreciate some of the complexities in determining one’s freely chosen beliefs concerning explicit understandings of Jesus Christ and the Catholic Church. Pope John Paul II even wrote in his book- Threshold of Hope- of how it was understandable how someone like Gandhi would have troubles in accepting Christianity from the hands of the same forces that oppressed him and his homeland.

    So- I hope to conclude my post with something approaching the true guidance of our Mother Church- we are called to witness for Christ and Church- there is no way to suppress that demand of all disciples of Christ. We must also be gentle as doves, and shrewd as serpents in doing so. We must evangelize with our lives, our words, our works and so forth. But we are called to stop short of making ultimate Judgements on the outcomes of any one man’s soul. We know the prescriptions for holiness as orthodox Catholics- we need to keep pulling the planks out or our own eyes first, but not neglecting to admonish all sin and sinners we encounter- with charity and without coming across as “clanging gongs” full of truth but too little love.

    I am not down with just outright bashing of folks who are Muslim, Jews, Buddhists, or even non-believers in anything Holy. We don’t know that these people who belong to some degree to these other faiths are necessarily going to hell- anymore than we can say with complete certainty- I’m saved, I’m going to heaven- Jesus has no say in the matter- well hold onto your horses. One can use the “Judge Not” Scripture to bad effect, but I think it is to be applied to making these Ultimate Judgments on particular human souls. We can apply good theology and sound reason, and we need to keep abreast of what language and what approaches our Church Hierarchs are activating, so that we can be better witnesses for the Faith. If someone sounds just way too harsh, or way too gentle and wishy-washy, I try to find some speech or talk from the Pope on the subject or watch to see how he conducts himself in the company of non-Catholics. In trying to become little christs, we should draw upon the guidance from our Holy Father- Santo Papa. As such I am pursuing the important issue of reciprocity of religious freedom, without making blanket assertions about all Muslims heading to hell- assuming that they fully understand the implications of not viewing the Catholic Church as Church founded by Jesus Christ to be the provider of the normative means of salvation for universal humanity. I try to step back and appreciate the Mystery of Salvation, and humbly submit my will to God for moral improvement and clearer insight into the human condition. God bless all those of goodwill- I would like to offer non-Catholics a welcome to consider what being Catholic means by reading our Catholic Catechism in it’s entirety, along with reading Holy Scripture, and the Papal Encyclicals on all manner of topics. Welcome!

  • Nathan,
    Here is the English version of the same DECREE:
    I am glad that you agree that he was not excommunicated for heresy.
    He refused to be obedient to the Archbishop of Boston, the ecclesiastical authority, who finally time showed, never affirmed the dogma extra ecclesiam nulla salus.Neither did he issue a clarification when the secular media in Boston repeated that the Catholic Church has changed its teaching on outside the Church there is no salvation.
    Fr.Feeney also refused to go to Rome to defend himself.He was disobedient.

    Pius XII – Decree Excommunicating Leonard Feeney, 13 February 1953

    Prior to the excommunication, Feeney received the following summons to appear before the Holy Office from Cardinal Pizzardo on November 22, 1952.

    The Holy Office has been obliged repeatedly to make your teaching and conduct in the Church the object of its special care and attention, and recently, after having again carefully examined and calmly weighed all the evidence collected in your cause, it has found it necessary to bring this question to a conclusion.

    DECREE

    THE PRIEST LEONARD FEENEY IS DECLARED EXCOMMUNICATED

    Since the priest Leonard Feeney, a resident of Boston (Saint Benedict Center), who for a long time has been suspended a divinis for grave disobedience toward church authority, has not, despite repeated warnings and threats of incurring excommunication ipso facto, come to his senses, the Most Eminent and Reverend Fathers, charged with safeguarding matters of faith and morals, have, in a Plenary Session held on Wednesday 4 February 1953, declared him excommunicated with all the effects of the law.

    On Thursday, 12 February 1953, our Most Holy Lord Pius XII, by Divine Providence Pope, approved and confirmed the decree of the Most Eminent Fathers, and ordered that it be made a matter of public law.

    Given at Rome, at the headquarters of the Holy Office, 13 February 1953.

    Marius Crovini, Notary
    AAS (February 16, 1953) Vol. XXXXV, Page 100
    ___________________________________________________

    Since he was not excommunicated for heresy, the ‘absolutist’, ‘rigorist’ position of the dogma stands. It is the official teaching of the Catholic Church.

  • Tim,
    ‘Making blankt assertions that all Muslims are going to Hell….’
    All Muslims are de facto going to Hell according to the ex cathedra dogma extra ecclesiam nulla salus which you still have difficulty in affirming.
    Here is the ex cathedra dogma,once again.

    1. “There is but one universal Church of the faithful, outside which no one at all is saved.” (Pope Innocent III, Fourth Lateran Council, 1215).

    2. “We declare, say, define, and pronounce that it is absolutely necessary for the salvation of every human creature to be subject to the Roman Pontiff.” (Pope Boniface VIII, the Bull Unam Sanctam, 302.).

    3.“The most Holy Roman Church firmly believes, professes and preaches that none of those existing outside the Catholic Church, not only pagans, but also Jews and heretics and schismatics, can have a share in life eternal; but that they will go into the eternal fire which was prepared for the devil and his angels, unless before death they are joined with Her; and that so important is the unity of this ecclesiastical body that only those remaining within this unity can profit by the sacraments of the Church unto salvation, and they alone can receive an eternal recompense for their fasts, their almsgivings, their other works of Christian piety and the duties of a Christian soldier. No one, let his almsgiving be as great as it may, no one, even if he pour out his blood for the Name of Christ, can be saved, unless he remain within the bosom and the unity of the Catholic Church.” (Pope Eugene IV, the Bull Cantate Domino, 1441.) – from the website Catholicism.org and “No Salvation outside the Church”: Link List, the Three Dogmatic Statements Regarding EENS
    http://nosalvationoutsideofthecatholicchurch.blogspot.com/)

    The Church does not say that Judas is in Hell and neither does the Church say that he is in Heaven.However the dogma does say that all Muslims are on the way to Hell.
    So when I meet a Muslim I know that he needs to convert since I cannot judge if he has the baptism of desire etc.The Church says that he is oriented to Hell with Original Sin and mortal sins committed in that state.He lacks the Sacraments including that of the baptism of water.

  • What would Scott Hahn say if he mt th Imam ?

    [youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XJdigrcFDFc&hl=it_IT&fs=1&]

    [youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Eu15hXWQ7Qc&hl=it_IT&fs=1&]

  • What would Scott Hahn say if he met the Imam ?

    [youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_PtCFSVuKAc&hl=it_IT&fs=1&]

  • VATICAN COUNCIL II SAYS OUTSIDE THE CATHOLIC CHURCH THERE IS NO SALVATION

    [youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=y6ECtRajdJc&hl=it_IT&fs=1&]

  • FRANCISCAN PRIEST SAYS LUMEN GNTIUM 14 IS THE ORDINARY WAY OF SALVATION

    [youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=om0mrS_H4w4&hl=it_IT&fs=1&]

  • Lionel-

    It is agreed that if there is any saving to be done- it is Jesus Christ who is going to do it- He is God- not a mere prophet or holy man. I don’t know that we have a dispute on formal theology because I also agree that the normative means of grace and salvation are found inside the Catholic Church- this is why we must as Catholics witness to the Good News of Jesus Christ and to the truth of the Catholic faith- I think we both agree here. Where we are getting tied up in knots is how do we go about evangelizing Muslims, Jews, Hindus, non-believers and so forth. Your way is to hit them over the proverbial head warning them that they are on the path to hell- that is one means of evangelizing the truth- another way is the way I see witnessed by our modern popes and current Pope- when I read their speeches regarding Muslims I don’t get this over-the-top approach in the way they evangelize- it seems that they are speaking the truth with nuance- recognizing that while the normative means of salvation are the surest path- we cannot exclude the extraordinary Mercy of our Lord.

    If you desire to help someone who has inherited a faith from parents they love and adore- you would do well to enter into an oftentimes slow and difficult dialogue if you hope to convince and convert someone. If you show up on their doorstep and announce to them that their parents are leading them straight to hell and come with us to be saved in the Catholic Church- well I imagine the means of communication will be such that most people will order you off their property and then regard Catholics as rude, insensitive blow-hards who couldn’t possibly have anything in common with a God of Love. You see Love and Truth go together- it is like in courtship- the first thing that may draw you to a woman may be her physical beauty- now you could approach her and say- “hey you’re hot, let’s get married and make babies!”- that may be a dominant thought in your mind, but love brings in the mystery- you show gentleness, patience, kindness, you chase after her- you don’t try to overpower her with logical reasons why she should simply choose you over the other men.

    Evangelization is a loving process as well as a truthful one- if you truly wish to convert someone over to Christ and Church you cannot just overpower them with threats of hell- you may feel good about yourself in telling others the raw truth- but if you approach people with clanging gongs in your voice, your words, your personal bearing- you will not be serving the Good News you are ostensibly trying to convey- at least not very well.

    As a convert to Catholicism myself- I was won over by a friend who was Catholic, who offered a personal life witness and who slowly put me in touch with such things as the papal social encyclicals, and then with Byzantine Catholic Divine Liturgies. He could have rushed the process, cut to the chase, and told me- “if you want to be my friend, become a faithful Catholic now and avoid the pits of hell” Well- maybe that approach would have been something common in Jehovah witness circles, but how has that approach been going for them? As Father Corapi says in his conversion tape- “I discovered that the name of God is Mercy”. Many sins are covered by love, how many? We cannot know- Jesus the Just and Merciful will judge all of us- we should all do our best, and learn how best to convey His Name to those in ignorance. We can choose to court the non-Catholics, or we can just try to overpower them with our clubs of Truth. I think that we resort to the clubs only as a last resort, when a society tries to shut down our freedom to be and put into practice our Catholicism- or maybe when a society is engaged in a genocide of the innocents..

  • As far I am aware World Peace and please correct me if I am wrong, internet websites did not exist at the time of the revelation of the Noble Koran to the Prophet Mohammad PBUH by the Archangel Gabriel, what you have provided in your links to the web site
    http://www.islamreligion.com
    is links to a website, not to Islam as you apparently claim to be the case. You may sincerely believe the pages on that website represent the most accurate and correct interpretation of Islam but there would be very many Muslims who would disagree with various things on those pages. This is not some esoteric technical argument about how many angels could dance on the point of a needle but can be literally a life and death issue for Muslims and non-Muslims alike. For example, some Wahhabi clerics will declare Shi’ite Muslim clergy to be apostates and within the Wahhabi frame of reference, apostasy from Islam carries the death penalty. One thing I am particularly interested in respect of that website, is I could not see who the people are, who are operating it nor could I find what interpretation of Islam they subscribe to, maybe those things are clearly posted, if so could you provide a link or links to a places or places on that website where such matters are detailed.

  • Tim,
    We both agree that the normative means for salvation is Jesus and the Catholic Church.
    My focus has been on doctrine and dogma.
    There can be different approaches to evanglisation.The Holy Spirit can guide us.
    For the sake of peace we cannot change the teachings of the Church.
    There is confusion when you say ‘while the normative means of salvation are the surest path we cannot exclude the extraordinary Mercy of Our Lord’. This seems a rejection of Catholic doctrine, it is also ‘playing God’.
    We can choose different ways and times for presenting Catholic doctrine but the doctrine must be clear to us.In this case ALL Muslims are on the way to Hell.

    Tim,I am glad that you responded to the Holy Spirit and became a Catholic in a way that was appealing to you.Love and Truth go together and with gentleness,kindness and patience we can keep affirming the difficult truths of our faith.
    Usually in answer to a question, or in a polite matter of fact way we can say that the Church teaches that all Muslims ( and Jews etc) are presently on the way to Hell.You can smile kindly and speak it gently.And if your met with anger still be gracious but get the message across like St.Paul.

  • VATICAN APPROVED BOOK INDICATES ALL MUSLIMS IN ROME ON THE WAY TO HELL

    ALSO AFFIRMS OUTSIDE THE CHURCH NO SALVATION WITHOUT DENYING THAT DE FACTO EVERYONE NEEDS TO ENTER THE CHURCH TO GO TO HEAVEN

    An apologetic book in Italian published by the Vatican press ( Libreria Editrice Vaticana 2008) and approved by Bishop Luigi Morelli, Bishop at the Rome Vicariate (Vicariato) indicates all Muslims in Rome need to convert to avoid Hell.

    50 Argomenti di Attualita by Raffaello Martinelli ( p.98 Cristo SI, Chiesa, No?) states those persons cannot be saved who know the Church has been founded by Christ and is necessary for salvation and yet do not enter. This passage is from Vatican Council II, Ad Gentes 7.

    Muslims in Rome know about Jesus Christ and the Catholic Church. They are all oriented to Hell.

    The book also explains outside the Church there is no salvation(p.98,99) as, all people saved explicitly and implicitly by Jesus and the Church (Compendium of the Catechism,171).So it does not negate the centuries of teaching that de facto everyone with no caption needs to enter the Catholic Church to avoid Hell and go to Heaven.

    Here is the ex cathedra dogma extra ecclesiam nulla salus.
    1. “There is but one universal Church of the faithful, outside which no one at all is saved.” (Pope Innocent III, Fourth Lateran Council, 1215).

    2. “We declare, say, define, and pronounce that it is absolutely necessary for the salvation of every human creature to be subject to the Roman Pontiff.” (Pope Boniface VIII, the Bull Unam Sanctam, 302.).

    3.“The most Holy Roman Church firmly believes, professes and preaches that none of those existing outside the Catholic Church, not only pagans, but also Jews and heretics and schismatics, can have a share in life eternal; but that they will go into the eternal fire which was prepared for the devil and his angels, unless before death they are joined with Her; and that so important is the unity of this ecclesiastical body that only those remaining within this unity can profit by the sacraments of the Church unto salvation, and they alone can receive an eternal recompense for their fasts, their almsgivings, their other works of Christian piety and the duties of a Christian soldier. No one, let his almsgiving be as great as it may, no one, even if he pour out his blood for the Name of Christ, can be saved, unless he remain within the bosom and the unity of the Catholic Church.” (Pope Eugene IV, the Bull Cantate Domino, 1441.) – from the website Catholicism.org and “No Salvation outside the Church”: Link List, the Three Dogmatic Statements Regarding EENS: http://nosalvationoutsideofthecatholicchurch.blogspot.com/ )
    The dogma is saying that all Muslims in Rome and elsewhere in the world need to convert to avoid Hell. This is also the message of Vatican Council II (Ad Gentes 7).

    Ad Gentes 7 says ALL need to enter the Church for salvation. The Catechism of the Catholic Church 836 also says ALL need to enter the Church. Muslims have Original Sin and need the Sacraments for salvation.
    The dogma is saying that all Muslims in Rome and elsewhere in the world need to convert to avoid Hell. This is also the message of Vatican Council II (Ad Gentes 7).

    Ad Gentes 7 says ALL need to enter the Church for salvation. The Catechism 836 also says ALL need to enter the Church.

    The ex cathedra dogma is not contradicted by Vatican Council II, Lumen Gentium 16 said Fr. George Puthoor on a YouTube video. Fr. George Puthoor is a Rosiminian priest at the Basilica of San Ambrogio and Carlo, via del Corso, Rome. The book is available at the entrance of the basilica.

    Since Lumen Gentium 16 (invincible ignorance) refers to a concept only and not to de facto salvation it is not opposed to the Catholic infallible teaching that all non Catholics are oriented to Hell.

    Those who are in invincible ignorance or who have the baptism of desire are known to God only.There is no de facto baptism of desire that we can know of.

    Fr. Gorge Puthoor removed ambiguity in the book which could suggest Muslims all over the world are not oriented to Hell because some could be in invincible ignorance or have the baptism of desire that we can de facto know of.

    We do not know de jure (in principle) the number of cases presently with the baptism of desire in Rome. Neither do we know de facto the number of baptism of cases which exists presently in Rome. Nor do we know if there really are any cases of the baptism of desire presently.

    Mons. Raffaello Martinelli was recently appointed a bishop of Frascati, Italy. The Rosiminian priests and sisters continue to manage the basilica of San Carlo and Ambrogio via del Corso. The book is available free of cost along with apologetical pamphlets in different languages.
    http://eucharistandmission.blogspot.com/2010/05/vatican-approved-book-indicates-all.html#links

  • MONSIGNOR WHO SAID ISLAM NOT A PATH TO SALVATION APPOINTED BISHOP OF FRASCATI, ITALY

    Mons. Raffaello Martinelli has been appointed Bishop of Frascati, Italy. In an interview he had mentioned that Islam is not a path to salvation and that Muslims needed to enter the Catholic Church to avoid Hell.( http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9L5202FYCMs http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MCyWwQSHatc )

    In his book on apologetics, Argomenti d?Attualità in forma dialogica,Frammenti di Verità Cattolica. Come la Chiesa considera le religioni non –cristiane? P.54 (2006) he indicates that Muslims need to enter the Catholic Church for salvation according to the teachings of the Church.

    Raffaello Martinelli (born June 21, 1948) is an Italian prelate of the Roman Catholic Church.

    He was born in Villa d’Almè, and was ordained a priest for the Diocese of Bergamo on April 8, 1972. He served as bureau chief at the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith.

    On July 2, 2009, he was appointed Bishop of Frascati by Pope Benedict XVI.He received his episcopal consecration on the following September 12 from Benedict XVI, with Cardinals Tarcisio Bertone and William Levada serving as co-consecrators, at St. Peter’s Basilica- Wikipidia

  • i am from pakistan i love america to help pk and afghanistan

  • i love usa to helping pk by us aid

  • Pingback: How about protesting for a church in Saudi Arabia? « Daily Page
  • There is a more workable analogy with Saudia Arabia, taken from history: the Papal States.

    I don’t know nearly enough of the details of the laws and how that sovereign state was run before it was dismantled in the 19th century, but it would make a more realistic comparison with contemporary Saudia Arabia as an actual theocratic country. While obviously not approving of religious intolerance in the latter country, personally I would be wary of condemning everything about it with too broad a stroke, lest I shoot myself in the Catholic foot.

The Lure of Authoritarianism

Wednesday, March 31, AD 2010

61 Responses to The Lure of Authoritarianism

  • That’s a very poor measure. China is starting from a lower base. Even if it does everything right, the U.S. will have a higher standard of living for a while.

  • “There seems an odd attraction towards Chinese-style authoritarianism among certain more technocratic/elitist segments of the left-leaning political elite.”

    An excellent post as usual Darwin but I disagree that it is odd. Most Leftists since the time of the Russian Revolution have had an attraction towards totalitarian regimes of the Left. Orwell was very much the exception to this rule. China, although it has strayed in many ways from the days of Mao and his little red book which thrilled so many contemporary Leftists in the days of their youth in the Sixties, still is officially a Communist regime and antagonistic usually to the policies of the US, and thus something to be mentioned in praiseworthy terms by the herd of independent minds on the Left, another typical example being linked below.

    http://www.guardian.co.uk/commentisfree/cifamerica/2009/feb/06/china-useconomicgrowth

  • (it is, after all, rather easy to dislike the US for a number of reasons — we are, as the saying goes, over-paid, over-sexed, and over here)

    The phrase was supposedly common in Britain during the Second World War. The trouble with this thesis is that the overwhelming majority of American soldiers and sailors billeted overseas are in one of seven countries where reside about 5% of the world’s population (Iraq, Afghanistan, Kuwait, Korea, Japan, Germany, and Britain). I do not think social contact with the American military explains much of the generic hostility to the United States you find abroad.

    Orwell was very much the exception to this rule.

    Prof. Paul Hollander has said this was true among the subset of chatterati who went on guided tours of communist countries (“for every Andre Gide there were ten G.B. Shaw’s”). In fairness to our leftoid intelligentsia, there has always been a vigorous and at times modal strain which had no time for this sort of thing (Reinhold Neibuhr, Irving Howe, Michael Walzer, and Robert Leiken being examples).

  • “In fairness to our leftoid intelligentsia, there has always been a vigorous and at times modal strain which had no time for this sort of thing (Reinhold Neibuhr, Irving Howe, Michael Walzer, and Robert Leiken being examples).”

    Quite right, although they usually were regarded as heretics by a fair amount of the Left.

  • Art Deco,

    I was perhaps being too clever by half in using the “overpaid, oversexed, and over here” phase, but to clarify: My intent was not at all to convey it was contact with members of the US military which turned people off the US, but rather that:

    1) We are the richest country in the world (and thus its easy for people to claim we’re spoiled, out of touch, greedy, etc. (thus overpaid)

    2) Our popular culture (which is widely exported) is fairly degraded from the point of view of many traditional cultures. (thus oversexed)

    3) Our cultural, financial and political influence per pervasive throughout the world. (thus over here)

    Restrained Radical,

    It seems to me that people general emigrate to a country based on the degree of opportunity they believe they’ll experience there. It would seem pretty clear then, that people see more opportunity in the US than in China. I suppose one could claim that the rapidity of change in China suggests that at some point in the future there will be more opportunity for people there than in the US — but I don’t think you’d actually find many people who believe that.

  • Discussions of net immigration are of passing interest. What is most unsettling in all of this is the admiration of authoritarianism. Although the American Left has always flirted with authoritarianism, and I have no objective historical measure of it, my personal sense is that there’s a growing impatience with democratic processes, a growing desire to use executive and judicial powers to force unpopular or controversial policies, and a growing feeling that we can no longer abide politics as usual.

    I’m not sure why I have this personal opinion, except for perhaps the kinds of stories linked to by Darwin. Even a casual reading of news headlines today gives one the impression that there’s a sense of urgency to the progressive agenda like never before. The previous president was such a bogeyman in the Left’s imagination, they believed that the only way to counter his “disastrous” administration was to have a strong executive of their own. And whatever faults Bush had — one might argue he was at the vanguard of the “strong executive” model — there’s no comparison to the breakneck speed with which the Left wants to take that ball and run with it.

  • Friedman’s Lincoln Steffens-ish cheerleading for China is well past embarrassing.

    Otherwise bright people have the strangest blind spots.

  • Our current cultural elites go on pilgrimages to Cuba and Venezuela. It’s the same thing.

  • Its perhaps human to believe that what you know is perfectly right and it must be implemented. This seems to be more a problem of the left than of the right though both are possessed of it. of course one can say that it is in the nature of the left to want to change society into their “progressive” vision (of course not realizing their progress may be over the edge of a cliff) as opposed to the right which seeks to be skeptical of change.

    It doesn’t help that this country handed those on the left the means to enact a radical agenda (the most liberal president in history, a fillibuster proof Senate and a solid House majority with an ultra-liberal Speaker.) It doesn’t help that most Americans were not informed enough to vote against this.

    One can then understand the impatience of the left when members of Congress didn’t toe the line and enact all of the ultra liberal agenda. The answer then begins to reject the democratic process.

  • Of course all of this in the context of some who believe the “right” to pump breast milk in a special room is a right to life issue.

  • Phillip:

    Weeeelllll…

    While I find the overall illogic of the argument risible (a few sops in a bill that vastly expands abortion funding and access does not make it palatable), I think a good case can be made that provisions which make pregnancy and motherhood more reconcilable with work are in and of themselves pro-life.

  • Though it is quuuuuuuuiiiiiiiiitttttteeeeeeee a stretch to say that mandating a separate, private room for pumping breast milk vs. using a the current, private bathroom for pumping breast milk is a major pro-life move and a major advance for pregnancy and motherhood. Sorry, it really isn’t.

  • And thus the silliness of much current thought on social justice.

  • Maybe some will consider this to label me some sort of knuckle dragger, but I’m not clear how cementing the normality of women going back to full time, in-office work while their children are still nursing age if necessarily a pro-life victory.

    Which is not to say that no women should be working outside the home shortly after giving birth, but it would seem that from a point of view of upholding the natural family, situations that involve putting a child under 12 months in daycare are less than ideal. Not everyone can pull off being a single income family, and perhaps some don’t want to, but I don’t see that pumping breast milk in one’s cube or in the bathroom or in some other private place is a major anti-life problem. And I do see the increasing societal pressure that all mothers should work full time, and do so outside the home starting at most 2-3 months after birth, as being a serious negative from a pro-family point of view.

  • I’m sympathetic to the argument that another mandate from our increasingly intrusive current government is onerous.

    But forcing the mother into the crapper presents its own problems. As my wife (who used a breast pump in the toilet back when she was in the wage-earning workforce) pointed out: “Who else has to prepare their meals in the bathroom?”

  • Even beyond that, there is the silliness of saying that it is a “pro-life” issue. This while the real probability that abortions will be paid for and probably increased as a result is ignored. But heck, we get special breast pump rooms in the workplace.

  • Sure, Darwin, it’s a problem. Ideally, Mom would be able to stay home. That’s what *we’ve* been able to do, all thanks to God.

    But that doesn’t work for everyone, and there are good (as well as not good) reasons for the mom to work. Starting with an absent dad, and going from there.

    I’m not saying it’s ideal, nor should I be construed as regarding it as a pro-life victory for the ages. But we have to meet people where they are, and any reasonable incentive supporting, or removal of stigma from, motherhood in the workplace should be welcome and seen as pro-life.

  • Actually it really isn’t much of a pro-life victory. Not at all. Such thinking belongs in the crapper.

  • Phillip, I said that at the outset. I said it’s an abortion funder. It’s not to be celebrated. In fact, from the perspective of the blog poster in question, it’s as ludicrous as a pro-Iraq War blogger calling the War pro-life because of the reconstruction funds given to Iraqs.

    Bracketing all of that, as I expressly did from the outset, I think those provisions which support pregnancy and motherhood are helpful from a pro-life perspective. Not that any can counterbalance the great evils stemming therefrom, but helpful.

  • Again, pointing out that I do not believe it is a pro-life issue. It is really morally neutral. Some may be in favor. Less bacteria in a separate room (perhaps if it is kept very clean. Though of course there are about as many bacteria in a nursery room as a bathroom and women pump there.) But some may see it as not much of an issue at all from a pro-life perspective. That it really isn’t pro-lefe. And it really isn’t.

  • May you and yours have a blessed Triduum, Phillip.

  • And to yours also as we disagree on this small, prudential point.

  • I guess it’s something that goes both ways. Within the modern context, it is a slight concession towards parenthood, and in that context thus good. On the other hand, it strikes me as upholding a modern, individualized lifestyle over a traditional one, and in that sense strikes me as a negative.

    One thing that sometimes strikes me when progressive pro-lifers list these kind of things as pro-life victories is that things like subsidized child care, extra working-mom mandatory concessions, etc. end up increasing the marginal cost of being a more traditional family. Essentially, I as a single income end up making less (both because of taxes and because my company devotes more money to offering benefits I have no use for rather than to wages) in order to subsidize people who due to their two-income households make twice what I do in order to support fewer kids. (These same people, around the office, often express wonder as to how one could possibly afford to have four kids rather than their own one or two — despite the fact their household incomes are twice mine.)

    So there’s a sense in which pushing these benefits too hard (as, for example, with the amount of subsidized childcare, leave, etc. in Western Europe) makes it even harder to break with the system and have a more traditional family structure instead.

    On the other hand, moves which reduce the “my world will end if I carry this pregnancy to term” factor are clearly a good thing from the pro-life point of view.

  • Phillip:

    Agreed. And I wanted to remind myself that I was speaking with a Catholic brother in Christ. It wasn’t one of those passive-aggressive “I’ll pray for you” digs-drenched-in-piety.

  • Darwin:

    Good points, all. Recognition of “unintended consequences” doesn’t pop up often enough in evaluating these sorts of things.

  • Thanks Dale. I have been brusque and apologize if offense was taken. I will say that I tire of those (not saying you) that will take minor provisions (that often in fact are prudential judgments) and ignore massive support for intrinsic evils. Part of the problem I think with the USCCB Faithful Citizenship document. Seen some use that document to say that so and so is pro-abortion, but is in favor of increased food stamp funding and gun control so he is pro-life on two out of three issues – vote for him.

  • Well, Darwin, there is a considerable degree of antagonism to the United States in Western Europe, which approaches or exceeds us in its level of affluence and in the prevalence of bastardy, among other metrics of cultural degradation. One might also note that the bulge bracket banks in Britain and Spain are actually larger and more inclined toward international business than their American counterparts.

    Maybe the characters at Vox Nova

  • Well, nowhere did I say the breast pump law was a “major pro-life victory.” But it is certainly a pro-life victory. How strange that some ostensibly “pro-life” Catholics can’t see that. Perhaps they are out-of-touch with actual parenthood? Good to see that not everyone in this thread is so dismissive of a pretty significant and praiseworthy bit of progress.

  • DarwinCatholic, there’s greater economic opportunity in the US because of the higher standard of living. Compare the earnings of a restaurant employee in China to one in the US and you’ll see why they come here. There are large immigrant populations in Singapore and Dubai, very authoritarian countries with very high standards of living. Authoritarianism is usually opposed to economic development but there are plenty of exceptions (China today, Pinochet’s Chile, Chiang Kai-shek’s Taiwan, pre-1990’s South Korea).

    There’s also the lure of excellent higher education. An internationally respected university takes many decades, perhaps centuries, to build so the US is safe in that department for a while.

    Ethnic diversity also helps. Pretty much any citizen of the world can move to the US and find an ethnic enclave to live in, making the move much easier.

  • Good to see you here Michael. Actually as Darwin points out and as Dale agrees, there may be unintended consequences to this “pro-life” measure that wind up being anti-life. That as opposed to the actual,intrinsically anti-life reality of the health care bill.

  • Perhaps they are out-of-touch with actual parenthood?

    Hmmm. That’s an interesting theory, Michael. Maybe you could flesh it out a bit. You’ve been a parent for how long, Michael? You have how many children? You have spent how many years, as a parent, working in offices consisting of 50 employees or more and understanding the financial and personal pressures that apply to single and double income families respectively?

    To help ground our discussion, I can provide the following answers to the above questions:

    Eight years. Five. Six years (during my first two years of parenthood I was working for a company with only ~30 employees.)

    Doubltess your longer years being a parent, larger number of children, and more extensive workplace experience as a parent gives you a deeper and broader understanding of all this. Surely you wouldn’t simply be praising this as a “significant and praiseworthy bit of progress” simply because it’s a progressive point-score and you enjoy tweeking the noses of people who actually vote against abortion and support more traditional family structures…

  • Now Darwin, you know our betters know more about parenting and business even though they are not parents and have never been in business. Even as our betters know more about minorities even though they are white Europeans while we are Hispanics.

  • As for authoritarianism being a leftist philosophy, I mentioned above, Pinochet’s Chile, Chiang Kai-shek’s Taiwan, and pre-1990’s South Korea. Add Batista’s Cuba. On civil liberties, Bush was very authoritarian for a US president.

  • RestrainedRadical,

    Agreed that there can be fairly rapid economic growth for a while even under an authoritarian regime, but for Friedman and Meyerson’s concerns to pan it, it seems to me that one would have to argue that the combination of authoritarianism and development seem in such examples is in danger of being a more attractive model to the peoples of the world than the US model. And I’m not seeing why one would think that to be the case.

    Certainly, authoritarian and developing rapidly may be more attractive than authoritarian and povety-stricken (thus making China more attractive than North Korea) but I fail to see the danger that Meyerson in particular is concerned about that developing nations will look at the US and China and conclude, “Wow, we really better have a technocratic dictatorship rather than a democratic republic.”

    That’s the sense in which I think that immigration direction of the US relative to China is indicative. Given the choice, people voting with their feet seem to clearly prefer the US over China.

  • I don’t think anyone was actually dismissive of the provision; in fact, I thought Darwin gave a very balanced view of the matter. (Rarely are matters of public policy win-win situations, anyway. There’s always a cost to every benefit.)

    All of this is beside the point of the article. Even the point about immigration patterns is a side issue. What’s more at issue is our willingness to circumvent the political process and flirt with authoritarianism.

  • This is certainly a wide-ranging thread. (Not that there’s anything wrong with that…)

    I agree, j. christian, that this is a disturbing trend — one more pronounced on the left in that they have many more things that they positively want to do, while conservatives are currently mostly engaged in resisting change. On a number of issues (perhaps most notably environmentalism) there seems to be a waning patience with actually persuading the public to support “the right thing” and an increasing frustration that technocrats cannot simply impose new regulations and structures without consulting the troublesome electorate and their representatives.

  • But it is certainly a pro-life victory. How strange that some ostensibly “pro-life” Catholics can’t see that. Perhaps they are out-of-touch with actual parenthood? Good to see that not everyone in this thread is so dismissive of a pretty significant and praiseworthy bit of progress.

    I don’t really think so, even though I think the existence of a comfortable place for a woman to pump is a good thing – but it’s more of a plain ol’ decency thing. Then again, having six kids, two of whom have special needs, I’m out of touch. Oh, and one of those special needs kids was born with a cleft palate and therefore couldn’t suck. My wife pumped exclusively for over a year – we even had to rent a medical grade pump that was so heavy and awkward that it brought on excessive scrutiny from airline security.

    Yeah, out of touch…

  • Technocrats grow impatient because they “know” what is best for us. They have the knowledge that we don’t have even if they haven’t the experience. Thus someone who is not a parent or business person can know what is good for parents and business. Why someone who is a white European can know what racial programs are good for ethnic minorities even if those minorities disagree.

  • While I see the breast-pumping rooms as something beneficial to working mothers, I still can’t help but see it as an oddity.

  • It seems the briefly aired Firefly series was rather prophetic. The (Sino-American) Alliance exercising galactic totalitarianism in the name of peace, efficiency and happiness. Could it be the Tea Party are the Browncoats?

    The elite financiers and their academic lackeys have always sought to merge the USA with a Communist regime to use capitalism to fund a global totalitarian oligarchy. Used to be think tanks (foundations) were preparing us to merge with the USSR. However, Reagan, Thatcher and Blessed John Paul II put a stop to the attraction for that horror. So now they are working on merging us with China. China is the future model of world government and many people are willing to make a deal with the Devil so they can have the comfort of security (slavery) rather than living in fear of failure (freedom).

    Ai ya women wanle!

  • Darwin, your tactics and “arguments” (bullying) are boring.

  • bullying = pointing out when someone claims authority/experience he lacks

    Well, we aim to please. 😉

  • Darwin, you might be interested in a post I wrote today for Rock and Theology on children. Pay close attention to the seventh paragraph.

  • Let me chime in here as a full-time working mother who pumped milk for over a year for my daughter and plan to do it again for my forthcoming baby (I think MrsDarwin and I are due about a week apart).

    My family is a little unusual because my husband stays home with our children while I work. This decision was not made because of an unexpected unemployment situation but something we deliberately chose. We felt strongly about not sending the children to daycare and having a stranger raise them. One of us was going to stay home and, since the economic potential in my field is much greater than his, we decided it would be my husband. Over time, I think we have made the right decision, but, in these child-bearing years, it can be very hard.

    Now, in a lot of ways, we get the worst of both worlds. We live far out from the city and I have a long commute because we cannot afford to live near the city on one income. Pricing of many things seems dependent on two incomes and the assumption that everyone has a paying job. So I am not in favor of anything that reinforces the “necessity” of a dual income household and that it is proper to outsource the raising of one’s children.

    On the other hand, there is very little corporate support for working mothers beyond pats on the head. I get zero paid maternity leave. All the time I take off of work for childbirth comes from my accumulated sick and vacation time. What that means in reality is that our family just doesn’t go on vacation beyond a handful of days around major holidays to visit nearby family. Taking a week off to go to Florida (or go visit family across the country) is just not feasible. I am relatively healthy and don’t get sick that often, but am fearful of ever getting put on pregnancy bedrest. We can’t afford unpaid leave because I am our only income. And I know that I am lucky in that I actually get sick and vacation time to bank and can actually take time off after childbirth. So it would be nice if working mothers had more concrete support.

    Now the law in my state (Tennessee) already required employers to offer a private, non-bathroom area to pump. So while it is nice thought that federal law now requires everyone to be decent to pumping mothers, I’m not sure it is that great of a pro-life victory. If even pro-business, low tax, redstate Tennessee has this law, it must not be that controversial and could be passed state by state respecting our federal system.

  • bullying = pointing out when someone claims authority/experience he lacks

    This is a great line to remember the next time you pontificate about, say, liberation theology.

  • Or the next time you give an opinion on breast pumping, I suppose. If you want to claim you have more experience at breast pumping than I do, go right ahead.

  • Michael,

    Perhaps you should rely on Jenny’s experience noted above.

  • Michael,

    The reason I called you on your “Perhaps they are out-of-touch with actual parenthood?” line is because you were using it on people some of whom you knew very well to have much more experience being working parents than you do. If I’m out of touch with actual parenthood, then you clearly don’t have standing to even possess an opinion on the matter. Next time I suggest to you in a condescending fashion that you are perhaps out of touch with actual liberation theology, or suggest to a mother that she is out of touch with actual breast pumping, I strongly encourage you to parrot the line back to me. I’ll deserve it.

    As it happens, I read your Rock & Theology post even before you linked to it here (it was a slow day, so I read it when you linked to it at Vox Nova) and I did indeed crack an amused smile at that seventh paragaph, since it seemed like such a classic example of choosing to characterize others rather than understand them. I’ll see about leaving a comment there with more detail, if you’d like.

  • “I did indeed crack an amused smile at that seventh paragraph, since it seemed like such a classic example of choosing to characterize others rather than understand them.”

    ..Sort of like treating people as objects rather than subjects, wouldn’t you agree? That passage was pure argument by assertion. He might’ve just as easily claimed that parents in big families don’t love their children — it would be just as factually correct, and just as devoid of substance.

  • Jenny,

    Fair points. You’ve definitely taken the harder road, and I have a lot of respect for you and your husband on that.

    Certainly, the extra burden to large companies in having a room somewhere which can be used for nursing mothings is not large — I wouldn’t consider it to have nearly the kind of blowback for those of us (like you and me) who are slogging through the single-income lifestyle that mandating company-paid or taxpayer-subsidized childcare would.

    The concern about being forced to subsidize the two-income lifestyle does, I guess, spring to mind for me since the very large company I work for does provide a fair number of benefits clearly designed to help out the two-incomes-two-kids-in-daycare set. And on various teams I’ve been on over the years, it often seems like as someone who doesn’t have to rush out right at 5pm in order to pick the kid up from daycare on “my day to pick the baby up”, I would often get extra tasks dumped on my by my two-income-household co-workers at the end of the day. The combination of working later so they can rush out to daycare on time (and thus getting home later to my own wife and kids), while hearing them talk about how they can’t imagine affording a “large family” like mine, gets to rankle a bit. (Though clearly, excess cynicism isn’t the right response.)

  • (Though clearly, excess cynicism isn’t the right response.)

    Ah, but sometimes it can be a satisfying one. Rather like when I am dealing with a client who is on bankruptcy number three and who is complaining to me about a bank which, for some unfathomable reason, does not wish to extend a loan to him.

  • I also find Jenny’s insight good. She is struggling but still finds that a breast-feeding room is not a “pro-life” issue. Rather, as others have pointed out, it is a decent issue for a mother’s sake where appropriate.

  • Perhaps you should rely on Jenny’s experience noted above.

    My wife’s experience is key for me, as well as women in my family.

    If I’m out of touch with actual parenthood, then you clearly don’t have standing to even possess an opinion on the matter.

    Um, I didn’t say you were out of touch with parenthood.

    He might’ve just as easily claimed that parents in big families don’t love their children — it would be just as factually correct, and just as devoid of substance.

    Why? It’s a completely different, unrelated claim than the claim that I made.

  • So what are your wife’s experiences on breast feeding in the workplace?

  • Phillip,

    I didn’t say the breast pump rooms were *not* pro-life. It is just that they are more in the “children deserve the best nutrition that can be given” vein of pro-life, as opposed to the “it should be illegal for your mother to kill you” vein. But I don’t think it is a grand victory or a significant gain for the pro-life position. If Tennessee has laws protecting public nursing, extended (albeit unpaid) maternity leave, and pumping at work, these issues must not be that great of a battle and could be passed in all the states.

    Darwin,

    My company doesn’t really offer benefits that only apply to dual-income households beyond the flex account for daycare, but I view that as more a federal issue than a company one. And amazingly none of my coworkers have kids in day care, so getting work dumped on me is not really a problem.

    What does set my teeth on edge is the federal tax credit for daycare. I find the provision to be anti-family and discriminatory against one income, two parent households. While it is true that the direct cost of our “day care” was zero dollars, the actual cost of this free service was an entire year’s salary.

    If we, as a society, have decided to subsidize the cost of daycare, then every child’s family should have the cost subsidized, not just the families that have decided to outsource the job. The best way to do this is to increase the child tax credit and abolish the day care credit.

  • Agreed on the federal daycare tax credit.

    Actually, it comes into play far less frequently that some of the child care related programs and policies at my company, but the thing which perhaps galls the most is a policy which was adopted after a PR snafu a few years back that in any layoff, if both spouses work for the company they will never lay both off, even if both would otherwise have been targeted, because they don’t want to wipe a family’s entire income.

    Of course, for those of us who already are our family’s only source of income, no such promises…

  • Actually Jenny then we disagree. I think there is an abuse of language to claim that such an issue is pro-life. Sure there is a charity to allow women a private room to breast feed. But is this a fundamental issue of justice? Is justice violated in a basic sense if a woman has to breast pump in a bathroom? Is it really? Not at all. And the trivialization of what is pro-life is part of the problem with such arguments.

  • While a private pumping room may be a charity for the woman, I *do* believe it is an issue of justice for the baby.

    The problem with pumping in the bathroom is not necessarily that it is a bathroom. It is that the bathroom is a public place. Breast pumping requires a loud machine, an electrical outlet, partially disrobing, attaching two largish suction pumps to a private area of the body and relaxing enough to let the milk flow. Next time you are in a public bathroom at work (or wherever), take notice of the electrical outlets. They probably are not in the stalls, so the pumping would have to be out in the open. Imagine standing in this vulnerable position next to that outlet while your boss, your coworkers, and who knows who else comes in and out of that bathroom.

    Most women will not endure that type of humiliation three or four times a day for however long the child needs breastmilk. They will simply choose to formula feed and some children will pay with their lives. The pro-life angle of the policy is that it allows women better opportunities to feed their children the best possible nutrition and may save lives. http://apnews.excite.com/article/20100405/D9EST98G0.html

    Now all that being said, I do agree that the language can be (and often is) co-opted to justify all manner of minor pro-life policies while allowing the one major pro-life issue to go unchecked. Do these minor victories redeem a monstrous bill? No. And I do agree that it is a trivialization to label a bill “pro-life” because it federally mandates private pumping rooms, but allows funding for abortion.

  • I guess we will still disagree. A benefit perhaps. But an issue of fundamental justice no.

Global One Child Per Family Policy

Thursday, December 10, AD 2009

Diane Francis, a columnist with the Financial Post, a Canadian newspaper, has a column here calling for a global one child policy.

A planetary law, such as China’s one-child policy, is the only way to reverse the disastrous global birthrate currently, which is one million births every four days.

The world’s other species, vegetation, resources, oceans, arable land, water supplies and atmosphere are being destroyed and pushed out of existence as a result of humanity’s soaring reproduction rate.

Ironically, China, despite its dirty coal plants, is the world’s leader in terms of fashioning policy to combat environmental degradation, thanks to its one-child-only edict.

The intelligence behind this is the following:

-If only one child per female was born as of now, the world’s population would drop from its current 6.5 billion to 5.5 billion by 2050, according to a study done for scientific academy Vienna Institute of Demography.

-By 2075, there would be 3.43 billion humans on the planet. This would have immediate positive effects on the world’s forests, other species, the oceans, atmospheric quality and living standards.

-Doing nothing, by contrast, will result in an unsustainable population of nine billion by 2050.

Although I think this proposal of Ms. Francis is both evil and insane, I do give her props for saying out loud what many environmental hysterics only hint at:  Man is the problem.  Eliminate as many humans as possible and the environment can by saved to be enjoyed by the anointed few like Ms. Francis.

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49 Responses to Global One Child Per Family Policy

  • Oh dear, where to start?

    Perhaps with the good news? I already have two kids and I’m hoping for more. In other words, my descendants will have more influence than those of Francis and the like-minded.

    Now the insanity.

    Why even allow one child? Some poster told me that two wasn’t an arbitrary number in a combox at the end of this post, because two is necessary for population replacement:
    http://vox-nova.com/2009/08/07/preliminary-ramblings-on-population-and-the-environment/
    But of course two is arbitrary, unless the goal is perfect replication of today’s population, and I’m not sure on who is pushing for that.
    Further to the point, allowing one child is also arbitrary. If you really want to stop human influence on the environment, allowing one child is non-sense.

    Another option make much more sense if Francis is really serious:
    The vast majority of people should have no children and select families should have several. There is nothing more inefficient, ecologically, than raising a single child. Families with several children use far less resources per child.

    You know what, that wouldn’t be fair. How about this? No one can have babies and raise them. The government can calculate how many people we’re going to need to keep this thing running (we’re going to need organ transplants you know, and nurses to care for us in our old age), clone them and raise them in huge, efficient, camps. Problem solved.

  • In the worldview of these maniacs, human beings are a virus, a disease, and need to be reduced or eliminated so that Mother Earth can heal.

    This is why the global warming issue is really starting to bother me. Regardless of whether or not it is a serious problem, it is clear that some of the same forces that support this population reduction ideology are also behind terrorizing us all into accepting that we must completely reorder the world economy to reduce CO2 emissions.

    I’ve already seen articles about how babies are bad for the environment from the stand point of “carbon foot prints” – every child makes global warming worse, apparently.

  • I take a small amount of comfort in the fact that even the commenters there think she’s loony.

  • Joe, not being a scientist it is difficult for me to have a truly informed view on global warming. That said, being human I’m prone to bias and I admit I’m biased toward skepticism precisely because the folks who are the most passionate alarmists seem almost uniformly to hold some variant of comical view you describe. They see the earth as a god-like living organism that is infected with the virus known as humanity, which virus would be largely benign but for capitalism and religion, which render it deadly and malignant. The treatment requires (i) marginalizing organized religion, (ii) reducing the virus count, and (iii) replacing free markets with government planning and control. And if we don’t start treatment immediately, we’re all gonna die.

    Somehow I just don’t think so.

  • But today’s lunacy is tomorrow’s policy, at least at the rate we are going.

    Our descendants may have more influence, but who is influencing our descendants? With academia and the media (both journalistic and entertainment, to the extent there is a differrence) overwhelmingly tilted towards Mz. Francis and her ilk, the odds do not look good.

  • I have a more simple solution: if everyone who was truly alarmed about AGW would just personally stop emitting CO2 for about thirty minutes, think how much progress we would make! I think Al Gore should lead by example here.

  • One child per family will end up being a statistical result only. See, if carbon credits are a good idea, why not kiddie credits. Families who have dough can buy kiddie credits from families who need dough. This will help insure that kiddies end up in wealthier families that can afford to give them the high standard of living they deserve. Some kooks have already thought of this — count on it — but are waiting until society is “enlightened” enough to be receptive to it.

  • Not well thought out, to say the least.

    The idea of human beings as a plague or infestation is not unknown in science fiction. But the notion that nine billion people on the planet is unsustainable is also fiction.

    Which isn’t to say that politics doesn’t muck up the distribution of food and other resources. That’s plenty hard stuff to work on right there.

  • Thank God me and the husband are breeding like Catholic rabbits!! Have one 13-month old and twins on the way at the end of January. Guess we’d better keep going before the Earth Worshippers have their way!!!

  • P.S. what kills me is that these anti-human dirtbags will be whining and moaning when they grow old and grey and realize there aren’t enough tax-payers to support them in their old age! Then they’ll probably think twice about, “There are too many people!”

  • Congrats Coffee Catholic! As the father of twins, there is nothing like them to add zest to a house!

  • I’d be inclined to take her seriously if I were into gaia worship. But alas I’m not, so… meh.

  • if carbon credits are a good idea, why not kiddie credits. Families who have dough can buy kiddie credits from families who need dough.

    They thought of that already.

  • To be clear: I would never morally condone what I am about to say. Yet what strikes me as odd is that the people who call for mass population reduction because of “overpopulation” don’t…I don’t know…sacrifice themselves. There’s this group called the Voluntary Human Extinction movement and conveniently its originators have yet to voluntarily remove themselves while advocating others to do so.

  • Well, to be fair, I think you’re supposed to get yourself sterilized before signing up as a member of the voluntary extinction group. Apparently, wiping out humanity is important enough one should not have children (with the comfortable side effect that one can spend all one’s time and money on oneself and not have to support any dependants) but not actually urgent enough that one should hurry things along by actually hurting yourself.

  • I’m curious at the justification of these iniatives b/c it would avoid wars over scarce resources. Aren’t wars, from a perspective that doesn’t really value human life, just as if not a more effective means of population control? The bloodier the war, the more the population is in check.

    I just wish these kinds of proponents would be consistent with their logic, so that they could see for themselves how irrational it truly is.

  • Eric, they don’t off themselves because they’re the wise and enlightened ones. Gaia needs them to inform other people that they’re unnecessary wastes of space.

    “There’s just enough of me and way too much of you.”

  • As was basically said by another commenter, “Today’s insanity is tomorrow’s public policy.”

    China will increasingly be seen as setting the standard for all to follow. Soon every nation will be encouraged to fall in line and push for population control.

    Think it can’t happen here? Take a gander at the emissions goals to be reached in this country by 2050. They’re nothing but hogwash UNLESS efforts to “go green” are coupled with formal population control policies.

    Those policies won’t be limited to abortion. Citing “quality of life” issues we can expect a fevered push for euthanasia of the less than desirable in our society.

    It’ll be almost inevitable unless a complete turnaround is effected in the present cultural mindset.

  • This author is a day late and more than a few dollars short when it comes to the Chinese policy. I believe China has of late decided to ease up on the one-child policy in certain areas of the country because of the disastrous social problems it has caused, including but not limited to:

    1. An extreme gender imbalance (men greatly outnumber women);
    2. The disappearance of extended families (if everyone is an only child, that eliminates not only siblings but aunts, uncles, and cousins, and forces one young or middle-aged adult to be responsible for the care of both parents and all four grandparents);
    3. The “little emperor” syndrome of spoiled children and teens who grow up never having to share anything;
    4. The social instability that is likely to result from large numbers of young men being unable to marry and spending their lives as “lone wolves”.

    Other points overlooked by the global population control pushers:

    1. The main reason world population doubled in the last 50 years was NOT because birth rates went up, but because death rates went down due to sanitation, vaccinations, and improved medical care. As demographer Steven Mosher puts it, “People didn’t start breeding like rabbits — they STOPPED dying like flies.”

    2. The so-called “replacement level” fertility rate of 2.1 children per woman is merely a statistical average for developed countries in which the vast majority of children can expect to live to adulthood. In less developed countries where infant and child mortality is higher, a “replacement level” birth rate would have to be higher. A couple in Haiti or Bangladesh, for example, might have to have 5 or 6 children in order to insure that at least 2 of them survive to adulthood.

    3. To maintain a replacement level of 2.1 or 2.0 children per woman, some couples will have to have larger families in order to compensate for those who have only one child or none at all (often through no choice or fault of their own).

    4. One does NOT raise the standard of living in a less developed country by forcibly lowering the birth rate. Rather, the birth rate will drop “naturally” as standards of living rise and education and employment opportunities open up for women, which prompts them to postpone marriage and childbearing. To try to bring the birth rate down first is a classic case of putting the cart before the horse.

    5. Many countries, most notably Japan, Russia, and most of Western Europe, are facing an imminent UNDER population problem because their birthrates have been well below replacement level for decades. Some governments have tried, with varying degrees of success, to encourage childbearing through “baby bonuses”.

    6. Many experts such as Mosher believe world population will peak at 8 to 9 million later this century and then begin to decline on its own, purely from the demographic “momentum” of birth rates that are currently in decline over most of the world. Mosher states categorically that world population will NEVER double again since birth rates are dropping and life expectancies are not increasing nearly as fast as they were earlier this century (in some areas such as Russia and sub-Saharan Africa, life expectancy is actually dropping due to AIDS and other factors).

  • Oops, I meant to say that world population would peak at 8 to 9 BILLION.

  • Bravo Elaine, informative and succinct, always a potent combination!

  • “Thank God me and the husband are breeding like Catholic rabbits!!”

    Don’t forget adoption. Over 120,000 kids available today. You don’t need to give birth to expand your family, and adopted kids benefit from having a ready family!

  • Well said, Elaine. This brings to mind something I found on here at one point before. I’m sure the Doomslayer is twitching out there…

  • Nice touch Elaine,
    One addition to the disappearance of the extended family: not only do some kids grow up as ‘little emperors,’ but most kids grow up never having seen parenting in action. Most of us learned something about parenting from watching our parents with our youngest siblings, or our oldest siblings with our nieces and nephews, or our aunts and uncles with our younger cousins. All of that is eliminated when extended families disappear. To learn everything you know about parenting by observing only how your parents worked with you can be a serious disadvantage.

  • When so-called “science” comes with a set of talking points and a ready-made statist political agenda, one would be an irrational fool NOT to be skeptical of the so-called “science”.

  • Ah, let’s pick the most extreme views on how to deal with human induced climate change in order to generate more suspicion of the reasonable efforts to reduce our impact on the environment.

    Here’s the real question: Can 9 billion people sustain the level of consumption of resources currently enjoyed in the U.S.?

  • Brian,

    To be honest, I don’t know. I don’t know because I don’t know who I should trust or why I ought to trust them. Credentials just don’t seem to cut it for me anymore, since people with letters after their names can be found on both sides.

    Who do you trust and why?

  • “Ah, let’s pick the most extreme views on how to deal with human induced climate change in order to generate more suspicion of the reasonable efforts to reduce our impact on the environment.”

    This is my post Brian and I posted it as an extreme example of an all too common anti-human mindset among extreme environmentalists.

    I’ll ask you a question: Which is more important, restoring the environment or economic development to lift more of humanity out of poverty? Personally I think we can do both, and without losing our humanity in the process.

  • The notion of an imminent and disastrous worldwide population explosion requiring strict limitations on childbearing is — literally — as outdated as leisure suits, disco, and the notion of an imminent and disastrous new Ice Age (which was all the rage among climate scientists in the 70s). Birthrates have been falling rapidly all over the world — in less developed countries as well — for the past 20 to 30 years.

    The “unsustainable” 9 billion population Ms. Francis says will occur by 2050 if we “do nothing” is, according to Steven Mosher and many others, EXACTLY the point at which global population will peak and then begin to drop if we “do nothing” to change current birth rates.

  • From what I’m aware of the earth can easily sustain 9 billion and even 18 billion people without batting an eye.

    We are nowhere near reaching capacity on this blue planet, so any, ANY environmentalist or eugenicist that wants to control population control is battier than the climate change crowd.

  • World population is expected to rise until 2050 and then level off. It has fallen in India as living standards rise. The real problem we are facing is not the prospect of 9 billion people who all live like Americans, but that all Western countries (with the exception of the US) are reproducing at below replacement levels. Europe as a whole is at 1.38, Canada is at 1.48, Russia and Spain are in the demographic “death spiral” – 1.1, or half replacement rate. And,…,the same people who are most concerned about “overpopulation” tend to be the same people who like cradle to grave social programs. How, exactly, will that work when you have far more graves than cradles?

    What about the Third World, you ask? Well, as was discovered with crop yields 40 years ago, our technological capacity outstrips our growth rate by a significant margin. But, gee, once again, the greenies fret about “frankenfood” – which has done a lot more to feed Africans than Bob Geldof has.

  • “I’ll ask you a question: Which is more important, restoring the environment or economic development to lift more of humanity out of poverty? Personally I think we can do both, and without losing our humanity in the process.”

    It seems that we can do both because it is not a question of either/ or. Restoring the environment helps humanity, because humanity is part of, and depends on, the environment. Surely there is nothing extreme or “new agey” about that. Even those who highlight species and ecosystem loss tend to do so from the perspective that this would be a bad thing for humanity.

    What may seem to be beneficial for the development of humanity might indeed have unintended side effects that actually increase poverty and depersonalization. Remember that the Church was wary of industrial progress in the 19th century, not because it was anti- human, but because it had a broader view of what constituted progress.

  • Certain church leaders were wary of industrialization and they were wrong. Broader prosperity and increased life expectancy were great goods. The past in certain eras has many advantages over the present, but for the great mass of humanity life truly was, in Hobbes’ phrase, “nasty, brutish and short” compared to ours, until the great transformation wrought by the Industrial Revolution.

  • Don,

    I want to respectfully disagree with your assessment here. I do not believe the Papacy was wrong to be wary of the Industrial Revolution – there were often terrible abuses of workers and their rights, and the whole revolution was only made possible after a few centuries of political revolution against the Church, the confiscation of her property and the ruination of her ability to care for the poor.

    The Church did not and does not totally reject industrialization. All of the Popes recognized the potential benefits, but they insisted that the system of industrial capitalism be reformed and modified to respect the rights and dignity of the workers. They were not wrong to note it as a problem, and they were not wrong to demand that society address it.

    As Pius XI wrote, industrialization could have taken a better path that did not involve usurping the Church, displacing the peasantry, and abusing the workers. Thanks to the intervention of the Church, among other groups, many of the worst excesses have been remedied – but I think it is wrong to assume that they would have been without that intervention.

  • I will not deny the terrible abuses Joe, but I think industrialization was an absolutely crucial process for the well being of the great mass of the population. I think industrialization had very little to do with attacks on the Church and everything to do with human inventiveness combined with economic and political freedom. It was a process that was building for centuries and I only regret that the process wasn’t quicker. I would have died at 5 without penicillin. My father would never have walked but for advances in surgery a few decades before his birth. My mother would have been denied 12 years of her life but for the cancer treatments available in 1972. My wife and my twins would have died but for safe c-sections. We take for granted advances that our ancestors would have viewed as miracles and I am very grateful for them.

  • “To be honest, I don’t know. I don’t know because I don’t know who I should trust or why I ought to trust them. Credentials just don’t seem to cut it for me anymore, since people with letters after their names can be found on both sides.

    Who do you trust and why?”

    Trust? I tend to avoid reading with a hermeneutic of suspicion, unless I have a very good reason to do so. I just don’t have enough evidence that there is some massive conspiracy in the scientific world to over exaggerate the science on the large impact we have on the environment. In much of the scientific literature that I read, even from writers who have different politics than myself, I find very little “hard” science that cannot be interpreted in a Catholic light. To give a broad example, I see a confirmation of the Church’s critique of the modern industrial world in our recent discoveries concerning human induced climate change.

  • Another factor overlooked by population controllers: one of the most effective methods of spacing births practiced throughout human history has been the “ecological” breastfeeding of infants and toddlers for the first 2-3 years of their lives, a practice which is difficult for many modern women to adopt for various reasons.

    Historic studies of birth records going back to the Renaissance, and of certain ethnic and cultural groups such as the Amish and Hutterites, show that on average, a woman who married in her early 20s, breastfed all her children on demand as long as necessary, and practiced no other form of birth control would give birth to about 6 to 8 children in her lifetime, with the last birth occurring around age 40. Now, back when average life expectancy was in the mid-40s and nearly every family lost several children to disease, famine, etc. this was pretty close to a “replacement level” of fertility.

    When bottlefeeding became the preferred “scientific” and “sanitary” method of infant nourishment in the early to mid 20th century — and was heavily promoted in Third World countries — the result was that many women began getting pregnant every year, instead of every 2 to 3 years, and birth rates did begin to exceed replacement levels. In ancient and medieval times, women who gave birth to extremely large families of 15, 20 or more children, spaced only a year apart (sometimes less), tended to be noble or wealthy women with the means to hire wet nurses.

    The decline of breastfeeding and the resultant closer spacing of births probably fed a popular belief that without effective artificial contraception, women would be “doomed” to constant pregnancies and childbirths with little or no time to recover between them. Meanwhile, the discoveries that made natural family planning possible (e.g. the timing and signs of ovulation) didn’t occur until the late 1920s and it took several decades for doctors, etc. to get with the program (and some still haven’t).

  • “I will not deny the terrible abuses Joe, but I think industrialization was an absolutely crucial process for the well being of the great mass of the population.”

    But here’s the thing: most environmentalists, in my estimation, are not Luddites. Just as the Popes were critical of the narrow and exploitative way industrialization was carried out, and not of industrialization itself, so are most environmentalists critical of where certain industries are at today, considering what we know about climate change.

  • Brian,

    I think you’re setting up a false dichotomy. It isn’t “either trust what scientists say completely” or “scientists are involved in a massive conspiracy” – though I do believe the leaked e-mails are evidence of corruption on the part of some scientists, evidence that they are doing exactly that – exaggerating.

    What I mean is, what is it that causes you to trust what some scientists say and disregard what others say? Is it really as simple as the majority overrules the minority? Is it not true that in the history of science a minority that has gone against the prevailing wisdom has turned out to be correct in the long run? How are you so certain that isn’t the case now?

    I don’t believe the consensus really exists. The more digging I do, the more scientists, including real bona fide climate scientists, who say Co2 is not a deadly pollutant, but is actually good for the atmosphere, that temperatures are rising but at the same rate since before industrialization – a planetary recovery from the mini Ice age.

    We have two camps of scientists, both consisting of professionals with letters after their names, saying very different things. We also have a pretty deep political agenda accompanying the AGW scientists, though of course everyone accuses the skeptics of being hired by “big oil” – conspiracy theory for conspiracy theory.

    There IS evidence of collusion to hide unfavorable evidence, the destruction of data, even concerns that information might be accessed through the Freedom of Information Act. To me that sounds like evidence. Regardless, I believe that what is happening is that a correlation is being presented to us as a cause in order to push an agenda that would otherwise be extremely unpopular.

    Don,

    I don’t disagree that those are all wonderful things. My only concern is for an uncritical approach to industrialization that accepts all of its negative and sometimes evil consequences as collateral damage. I’ll say again that I do not believe the Church opposed industrialization, but she was highly critical of it and sought to put it on the right path. I think that was the right thing to do.

  • Let me just say that I am open to persuasion, but I am deeply concerned that what ought to be a scientific debate has turned so ridiculously ugly.

    People who believe global warming is a serious crisis are so fanatically intolerant of skeptics that no serious public debate has been allowed to take place. A theory that is secure, is sound, is supported by evidence, HAS NO NEED TO FEAR DEBATE. The excuse that the problem is too urgent for discussion is the rational of tyrants and oppressors.

    Because the vast majority of us are not scientists, it is all the more reason we ought to have access to both camps, to the “alarmists” and the “skeptics” or “deniers”. I want to hear a climatologist who accepts the mainstream narrative debunk the skeptics case point by point in a way I can understand. And if they say that they are above this, that they don’t have to do it, that we should trust them even without debate, well, how can a reasonable person accept that?

    What I see happening is very ugly, very troubling. I don’t care if the world is going to blow up in a year, before we agree to massive carbon taxes and a reordering of whole economies, to major political and cultural changes, we need to have a much more open debate than we have had thus far. The smearing of the skeptics is what makes me more skeptical than anything else. Copenhagen should have been a debate, the UN should allow debate, these scientists should be debating before the entire world for a week, a month, for at least as much time as we spend on murder trials and kidnapping fiascos and the Tiger Woods scandal.

    It all reinforces the sense that an agenda is being pushed on us. I don’t like it, and I will remain skeptical.

  • Joe,

    I don’t think consensus means majority, or that climate science is somehow split between camps of skeptics and proponents of human induced climate change. There are a wide range of ideas that attempt to explain data. There are many open questions, and of course everything is open to question. The peer review process, or, to put it differently, the scrutiny all theories face over time by other scientists, is how I would distinguish between good science and bad science. By good science, I wouldn’t say completely reliable, just more reliable than ideas that haven’t withstood or faced the same process. And while our understanding of climate change is always developing, and there are alot of differences over the particulars, there do seem to be some basic ideas that have withstood the test of time, namely, that rising CO2 in the atmosphere has contributed to global warming and that the reduction of CO2 emissions will have an effect on future temperature rises.

    Keep in mind that the stolen emails are, in fact, private emails that have been selected out of their original context. I’m not sure its appropriate to judge the content given how they were unethically and selectively required.

    With that said, I think there is something to the call for more open peer- reviewed journal process, which had already begun in certain quarters, although it also had its drawbacks.

    As to the “hockey stick” controversy, let me just say that there is a big difference between the controversy and what skeptics have made of the controversy, which reveals the difference between science and ideology. Check independent temp. data from boreholes, stalagmites, glaciers that together confirm an unprecedented rise in in recent decades.

  • “Let me just say that I am open to persuasion, but I am deeply concerned that what ought to be a scientific debate has turned so ridiculously ugly.”

    I would say that if anything is ugly, it is the politics or ideology creeping into the science. A good example is the dispute between Michael Mann and Stephen McIntyre over the now infamous “hockey stick graph”. The dispute was over technical aspects of methodology, not over the credibility of any theories of climate change. But since it was made into a dispute over climate change, it has become politicized.

  • Joe,

    You want to have a public “debate”, and that’s exactly what I’d like to avoid – although I guess it’s too late for that. You see we didn’t have a debate before we signed the Montreal Protocol. Most people didn’t know it happened. Nations just went ahead and took the recommendation of sound science and regulated the heck out of CFCs. Most current research has shown that if nations hadn’t acted a decisively back then, we’d be in trouble today. It was a non- partisan issue back then and it should be that way today.

  • “I want to hear a climatologist who accepts the mainstream narrative debunk the skeptics case point by point in a way I can understand.”

    That’s like reading an introduction to Catholicism that starts with areas of disagreement with Protestants. Better, in my view, to read a good book that gives a comprehensive overview of how climate science has developed. Tim Flannery’s The Weather Makers is a good start. Then hold up the arguments of the skeptics and see if they “debunk” human induced global warming.

  • Brian,

    I respectfully disagree. What the UN and major governments are proposing are drastic changes to our society, and these are not to be undertaken lightly. A debate is wholly appropriate on such major matters in a democratic society.

    As for the rest, I am not convinced that Co2 being a dangerous, toxic pollutant as recently declared by the EPA has or will “stand the test of time.” I am not convinced that the skeptic’s argument about the rate of change remaining constant before and after the Industrial Revolution has been sufficiently engaged or debunked. If they are right, we are about to make a major mistake.

  • I wonder why no one has brought up the fact that Diane Francis has TWO CHILDREN!

  • Well thank you Rocky for bringing it up. What she proposes is obviously meant for people not as enlightened as she is, rather like Gore preaching about carbon foot prints as he jets around the world and maintains a huge mansion. Now there is a word for that type of behavior and it begins with an H. The word of course is hilarious!

  • For more information about the death of the Hockey stick graph, consult Steve McIntyre’s blog(climate audit). This graph has been thoroughly discredited and, anyway, most IPCC scientist agree that the purported AGW theory does not rise or fall on it.

A Miracle For Father Kapaun, the POW Servant of God?

Wednesday, June 24, AD 2009

KAPAUN

In April of this year I wrote a post about the remarkable POW Servant of God, Father Emil Kapaun, a heroic Catholic Chaplain who died in a Chinese POW camp during the Korean War.  Now, and a grateful hattip to reader Rick Lugari, the Vatican is investigating a miracle attributed to the intercession of  Father Kapaun.

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32 Responses to A Miracle For Father Kapaun, the POW Servant of God?

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  • Hello, I am asking prayer for the Gas station attendent who was shot tonith in Detroit, I am also praying for all in Detroit

  • Prayers on the way Barbara.

  • Hi, I am requesting a prayer for my husband, Marc, father of 3 who at age 52 had a major stroke, was in the hospital for 3 months and they didnt think he would make it. He did make it, but he lost his left periperal vision . and is still kinda numb on his left side. It has stopped him from being able to do much of anything. Our life has changed a lot! We just ask for your prayers that he will continue to get better!

  • Hello, I am asking for a prayer and miracle for my little dog who means the world to me and I love him more than words can express. He has been diagnosed with a middle ear tumor that they suspect is cancer. He also has a cyst on the same side of his face that would make the surgery very complicated due to a lot of nevers being damaged among other complications. I have elected not to have the sugery. I pray that he will live many more years by side.

  • Prayers are on the way Rebecca and Ann.

  • Please pray for my 12 year old grand daughter. Last year she was a happy and healthy young girl. Straight A student. Always the first to help. Last Easter started to walk funny. After tests they determined she had a AVM type 2 on her spine. Now a year later and 5 surg later she is in a wheel chair unbale to walk or go to the bathroom with out cathing herself. She is handeling it much better than us adults. I pray every day for a miracle. Please help me pray for Delilah Patsy Palmer. Thank you

  • Please ask Father Kapaun to please ask Our Lord to make my 11 yr old daughter talk. She has mental delays and her brain does not allow her to sound out words. I ask everyday to Our Lord to keep her safe and to watch over her while at school. My mother who also lives with us is 91 years old and was in the hospital 2 yrs ago and the x-ray showed a tumor in her lung. I did not let them investigate further because of her age and that she would decline in health if was brought to her attendtion her. She has been coughing for the past 3 years of really unknown origin. I pray each day also for her that whatever the Dr.s saw on the x-ray that it was benign. My husband also had Prostate Cancer and is doing well. I pray that he remains well to continue being a great father to our daughter who needs him so and so do I.

  • My dearest Father Kapaun, I would like to ask our Lord for a prayer for me. I have an important final tomorrow I ask that your presence will guide me through this tough test. Thank you.

  • Please pray for me that I can take care of myself financially. I have had problems with this most of my life, love what I do, but need to have more confidence. Thank you for your prayers.

  • Father Kapaun, in life your love of Christ and your love of your fellow Man shone forth from you. In the POW camp in which you died you constantly risked your life to aid your fellow prisoners. We humbly beseech you to pray to God for those who have asked your intercession.

  • We ask your intercession,prayers and blessings on our 2 month old grandson who has not yet come home from the hospital. He is facing a possible heart transplant and we ask that you intercede and ask God to cure him so he may grow up to be a good man with the family who loves him and be an example of Gods power and love of His children.

  • Dear Father Kapaun, my life has always been ups and downs. But lately downs I have been taking care of my mother in the last 2years and my financialies has put me in a burden she is very ill with a disease and has alzheimers’. I dont receive any help. I want the best care for her and I pray each day for help. I know Gods power is mighty and miracles. Please pray that I can financially take care of mother Shirley and help me through my problems. Thank you for your prayers.

  • Dear Father Kapaun

    I have been trying to stay strong with my faith to help my son shaun 29yrs old through his stressful time.He is at his lowest time now.
    Accusations in the court i’ve appealed.He lost his son 2yrs ago after 4days with us Logan past away.He feels like he’s never been able to mourn his death.
    He tried to please his girlfriend and her daughters they have split up .He lost his job because they judged him over accusations in court.He had a terrible accident which showed him he blacked out then and 6yrs ago he blacked out rolling his vehicle.Now he’s going through medical test to see why he does this.
    He feels so guilty about my financial and emotional help.I told him ask me to take him anytime and pick him up anytime.He needs your help and prayers to lift him up.Please pray to God to help him through his troubled times.

  • Father Kapaun

    My Fiance Stephen 51yrs old is an alcoholic and laiden with debt because of bad decisions.If it be Gods will to give him strength to stop all his addictions and find a buyer for his property to start over please prayer to God for his strength and healing

  • Dear Father Kapaun,
    Please pray for my 12 year old daughter who suffers greatly from autism. She also has severe neurological issues other than autism. I pray for a miracle every day so that she can have a happy, healthy life and be out of physical pain.

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  • DEAR FATHER KAPAUN, PLEASE PRAY FOR MY GRANDDAUGHER, JACEY KOITCH, WHO HAS QAUDRAPLIGIC CEREBRAL PALSY. SHE IS 13 YEARS OLD AND CANNOT HEAR, SPEAK OR WALK.
    HER PARENTS TRY VERY HARD TO GIVE HER A GOOD LIFE, ALTHOUGH THEY ARE LIVING WITH A LIMITED INCOME. I WOULD LIKE FOR HER TO HEAR AND SPEAK. PLEASE REMEMBER HER WITH YOUR LOVING GRACE.

  • Father Abel Kapaun, please help my brother Mark who is going through a horrible divorce. Give him the strenght and courage to get through this without losing faith or hope. I pray to you that he is not ruined. Laura

  • Dear Father Kapaun, PLEASE PLEASE pray for a miracle for my little boy, John Dobb, who is only 8 years old. My darling boy has had many obstacles to overcome, starting with being born 2 months premature, a stroke in-utero, mild cerebral palsy, and appraxia of speech. He has worked hard since day one on this earth, taking so much extra effort to do things most kids can do without a thought. He is very bright, mainstreamed in school, and aside from his speech impairmaent you would never know he’s had any difficulties. We found a brain tumor last May, but it has recently started growing faster than he is. It’s a very difficult tumor as it is very vascular, and is also right at the brain stem which makes removal extremely difficult. My son has a heart of gold, always helping others, collecting items for the troops overseas last Christmas season, collecting donations for the Last Chance Animal Rescue, helping Daddy shovel the snow (and the neighbors, too). Just a great kid who doesn’t deserve more obstacles in his little life. PLEASE PLEASE pray for a miracle that if his biopsy turns out to be cancerous (or not) that his surgeon’s hands will be guided by God Himself and will make this thing go away forever. My little guy has so much to offer to the world. I feel very selfish to ask, but I am feeling very helpless right now. If you could please pray for strength for me … I sure could use it right now. Thank you for your consideration. Jennifer

  • I pray Father Kapaun that you may intercede with God for Jennifer’s son John and for all those who are asking your aid.

  • FATHER KAPAUN,PLEASE PRAY FOR THE LOSS OF MY HAIR.LET IT COME OUT AGAIN.I FEEL SO BAD THAT MY SCALP CAN BE SEN AND I DON’T FEEL LIKE GOING ANYWHERE AND IF I DO I TRY TO HISE FROM EVERY BODY SO THEY WON’T SEE MY SCALP. PLEASE ALSO PRAY FOR NELDA MY DAUGHTER THAT SHE LEAVES THAT DRUGGIE THAT SHE IS RUNNING AROUND WITH THAT SHE DOESN’T TAKE CARE OF HER THREE GIRL THAT NEED HER SO MUCH, I PRAY THAT SHE SOON COMES TO HER SENCES. AMEN
    ALSO HELP KATHY AND ASHELY WITH THIER TAKS TEST, THAT THEY PASS BOTH THE MATH AND THE READING,AMEN

  • Dear Father Kapaun
    I pray that you Father Kapaun may intercede with God,the Father and grant me a miracle.For 4 years I’ve been praying and hoping and it only gets worse.By his choice,my only son is estranged from me,his Mother,his sister,his entire family.I pray to have my son and his two children back in our lives.My heart is broken,I cry every day.I pray my son would contact his Mother and realize he loves and wants to see me and will let me see his children.I want my son back,right now its as if he is dead,Please I beg of you help me,I will say any prayers,novina’s,fast,anything.Thank you,

  • Dear Father Kapaun,
    Please pray for my sister in law Marianne. She is 43 yrs old and has been wheelchair bound from Mutiple Scerosis. She has suffered from her early 20’s. She is going for experimental treatment this week and this is her last hope. Her prognosis has been poor to date. She has zero quality of life. I hope she gets to have a least one day to do things that so many of us take for granted. She can not do a thing on her own. I believe a miracle can happen. I hope everyone will say a prayer for her. Thank you.

  • Dear Fr. Kapaun,
    I am writing to you for a special hope and prayer that my brother’s good friend Dylan survives a massive brain trauma. He is only in his early 30’s and full of life. The doctors have told the family that he is verging on brain death…with no hopes for recovery into a normal life. He has a beautiful wife and a child. Please Father Kapuan, we are asking for a miracle of life. Some sign that tells his family he is going to be okay. I am merely an observer, but am praying with all my heart for his recovery.

  • Please pray for my family. We have been through alot the last few months. Please give my home a miracle and let Joe, my husband, get over all his health issues and my daughter, be accepted to law school. Please provide peace and health in our home so we can smile again. I ask this in the name of Jesus. Amen.

  • DEAR FATHER KAPAUN
    I AM ASKING YOU TO PRAY FOR MY MOTHER WHO IS ILL. I AM ASKING FOR A MIRACLE. THE DOCTORS ARE SAYING SHE DOESN’T HAVE LONG TO LIVE. I BELIEVE MIRACLES HAPPEN. I HOPE EVEYONE WILL SAY A PRAYER FOR HER. I pray Father Kapaun that you may intercede with God for Mary’s recovery and for all those who are asking your aid. i ask this IN THE NAME OF JESUS. AMEN.

  • dear father kapaun, iam asking you to pray for my son who has an addiction problem. also for the health of a good friend who is pregnant and on bedrest that she might be healthy and delivery her baby without complications . also for the complete recovery for peter and kathy who have had cancer. and for all my family and friends who r grieving and need help and anyone else who is suffering. i thank you in advance .
    god bless ua everyone. amen.

  • Dear Father, A dear friend of mine has just been diagnosed with stage IV cancer. She is in her 50’s and has had much pain in her life. She needs some help. I would gladly accept her pain if you could pray for her. She is such a kind and caring person and I know would like to stay with her family for a while longer. She is so scared and her youngest is so sad. While I know we will all have to go someday, it would be so nice for her if she were allowed a little more happiness in this life. Bless You Father

  • Pls pray for my cleaning and trading company i need a might mirical in jobs and finances also pray for protection for the 2 ladies running the company

  • Dear Father: My daughter, Karen, was operated on Monday August 16th for a Thyroid Cancerous tumor. She was discharged today so am asking for everyone’s prayers for a positive outcome. In addition to her medical problem, she has been out of work and has had little success in obtaining employment despite the fact she has had a very impressive background. Despite all the obstacles, she has never lost faith and constantly places other’s needs before her own. I’m hoping for Father Kapaun’s intercession.
    Bless you Father.

  • Dear Father Kapaun,
    Please intercede for Patsy w/ colon ca. She is a widow in her 40’s with a 16 yr old daughter to raise. The doctors gave her no hope today. Please pray for Jesus to heal her. She is a faithful Catholic & loves God. AMEN

5th June, 1989 A.D.

Friday, June 5, AD 2009

Tianasquare
Sometimes one image serves to sum up an event in the world’s memory.  For the Tiananmen Square protests of 1989, that image is probable the one of the “tank man” — a lone protester who was photographed on June 5th, 1989 when he briefly stood, unarmed, before a tank column and stopped it.

There is not agreement as to who the “tank man” was, and most reports suggest he was arrested by the secret police and executed within the next two weeks.

In those heady days, it seemed possible that within a few years communist dictatorship would be nothing more than a memory, but twenty years later the communist oligarchs in China have learned to accomodate freedom and enterprise enough to remain in power.  And the tank man’s dream remains unrealized.

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4 Responses to 5th June, 1989 A.D.

  • “And the tank man’s dream remains unrealized.”

    I suspect that in the long run the Chinese will remember him and his dream well after the leaders who murdered him and so many others in 1989 are all but forgotten.

  • My 7-year-old son who wants to be a priest told me yesterday that he wants to be a missionary priest. I can’t remember his exact words, but it was something to the effect of wanting to preach about Jesus all around the world like Paul did, and then something about working against “those bad old communists”.

    Honestly, I don’t know WHERE he gets this stuff.

    😉

  • Donald, I pray you’re right about that.

    I watched much of the Tiananmen Square coverage from my father’s hospital room. Dad had had a severe stroke. One day, I was sitting there next to my unconcious father, watching the “tank man” brave the might of the Communist tanks, and I saw my dad’s hand move a little. I looked at him. His eyes were open and he was looking at the television screen. “That’s wrong,” he said. It was the last thing I heard him say. (And very appropriate, if you knew my dad. He was a news hound and could not watch the news without giving us a passionate running commentary on every story.)

    Several days later, my sister told me he had told his then 9 month old grandson, “I love you.” Those were his last words.

    I can’t see footage of Tiananmen without thinking of my father, a crusty old WWII vet who had fought against tyranny and hated it with all his being.