Sat 23/5/20: A Date For Your Diary!

Catholic Truth is hosting an Education Seminar next year, to explore the state of the Catholic Education system.  The event will be held on Saturday, 23 May, 2020, 10am – 4.30pm, in Rutherglen Town Hall, 139 Main Street, Rutherglen, G73 2JJ (South Lanarkshire, outskirts of Glasgow city centre). There are a number of free car parks around the Town Hall, and there is a very good public transport system – specifics will be provided nearer the time. 

The seminar will be informal, with opportunities for everyone to share their experiences of Catholic schools.   Leading the conversation will be teachers, pupils (past and present), and parents.  Some Home-educating families will exhibit some of their resources and will answer questions about the practicalities of home-schooling.  Further details, such as the theme of the Seminar, will be published in the next edition of our newsletter (September, 2019.)

Entry:  £20 / Concession £10  (senior citizens, students, unwaged), which includes tea/coffee/biscuits morning and afternoon, and a light lunch:  soup, sandwiches, tea and coffee.

Registration/morning tea, coffee, biscuits, will be at 10am, followed by the Rosary at 10.30.a.m, when the Seminar will begin. 

Note: as always at our events, there will be no entry without a pre-booked ticket;  email tickets are available, but if you prefer a ticket by mail, please email your postal details to editor@catholictruthscotland.com – Cheques to be made payable to Catholic Truth.  If writing to book, please contact us at Catholic Truth, PO Box 30017, Glasgow, G67 9FS.

Feel free to ask questions or to offer your ideas in the comments below.
Tell us, for example if there are particular issues which you would like to have included in the Seminar discussions. 

Catholics MUST Be ProLife:Action!(2)

This thread is dedicated to sharing news about pro-life issues.

Where possible, we suggest that bloggers make and respond to calls to action in defence of the unborn child – whether that entails emailing MPs or supporting various vigils etc.
Try not to simply post a link to news – publish an extract and/or make a suggestion about possible action, that will encourage readers to click your link.

Among all the crimes which can be committed against life, procured abortion has characteristics making it particularly serious and deplorable. The Second Vatican Council defines abortion, together with infanticide, as an “unspeakable crime”.54
But today, in many people’s consciences, the perception of its gravity has become progressively obscured. The acceptance of abortion in the popular mind, in behaviour and even in law itself, is a telling sign of an extremely dangerous crisis of the moral sense, which is becoming more and more incapable of distinguishing between good and evil, even when the fundamental right to life is at stake. Given such a grave situation, we need now more than ever to have the courage to look the truth in the eye and to call things by their proper name, without yielding to convenient compromises or to the temptation of self-deception. In this regard the reproach of the Prophet is extremely straightforward: “Woe to those who call evil good and good evil, who put darkness for light and light for darkness” (Is 5:20). Especially in the case of abortion there is a widespread use of ambiguous terminology, such as “interruption of pregnancy”, which tends to hide abortion’s true nature and to attenuate its seriousness in public opinion. Perhaps this linguistic phenomenon is itself a symptom of an uneasiness of conscience. But no word has the power to change the reality of things: procured abortion is the deliberate and direct killing, by whatever means it is carried out, of a human being in the initial phase of his or her existence, extending from conception to birth.

The moral gravity of procured abortion is apparent in all its truth
if we recognize that we are dealing with murder…
Pope John Paul II: Evangelium Vitae – on the Value and Inviolability, of Human Life #58  [Emphasis added]  
Click here to read the entire encyclical

To read Pro-Life thread (1) click here

General Discussion (16)

If there’s something of interest in the news that’s not covered in one of the topic threads, or you have a question to ask, a comment you’d like to make about anything under the sun, more or less, this is the thread for you.  

However, please check first, to ensure that you haven’t missed a topic thread or another thread where it would be appropriate to post your comment, as the GD discussion threads fills up very quickly.

Readers, all too often, go straight to the General Discussion thread to post news that is already the topic of a thread or to ask a question that is already being discussed elsewhere. So, do your Sherlock Holmes – at the very least check the side-bar – before posting here, please and thank you! Your “news” may simply be a different angle on a subject already under discussion, so do, please check before posting your comment here. OR it would be helpful if you could check out the most recent thread on that subject, in case it is still open. In which case, your comment would be best placed there. Example: if your news is about the Mass or the SSPX, scroll or check the archives to find the most recent thread on that topic. If there is no thread still open, then it’s safe to post on the GD thread.

Feel free, also, to share your favourite spiritual reading books, prayers and devotions on this thread. Whatever. Enjoy!

To read previous General Discussion Threads, click on the links listed below.

(1) click here (2) click here (3) click here (4) click here (5) click here
(6) click here (7) click here (8) click here (9) click here (10) click here
(11) click here (12) click here (13) click here (14) click here  (15) click here   

Cardinal Newman – To Be Canonised in October – Traditionalist or Liberal?

From the “liberal” – i.e. anti-Catholic – Tablet, the following predictable commentary: 

“…Given the context, it is appropriate that the English priest will be declared a saint by a pope who has sought to implement Vatican II, and during the synod of bishops assembly on the Amazon, a structure established by Paul VI as the council drew to a close. Newman’s writing on the primary [sic] of conscience, which he described as “the aboriginal Vicar of Christ”, is also echoed in Francis’ family life teaching, Amoris Laetitia, which opens the door for remarried divorcees to receive communion. The pope has said Amoris Laetitia is an attempt to move away from legalistic casuistry, and canonical manuals to a deeper understanding of applying moral laws…”   Source

Typically, by quoting Cardinal Newman’s words on conscience out of context, The Tablet and other liberal outlets omit the following, wholly orthodox, conclusion reached by the Cardinal on the subject: 

“…I observe that conscience is not a judgment upon any speculative truth, any abstract doctrine, but bears immediately on conduct, on something to be done or not done. “Conscience,” says St. Thomas, “is the practical judgment or dictate of reason, by which we judge what hic et nunc is to be done as being good, or to be avoided as evil.” Hence conscience cannot come into direct collision with the Church’s or the Pope’s infallibility; which is engaged in general propositions, and in the condemnation of particular and given errors.” Source

Indeed, the Cardinal’s own words of opposition to the spirit of liberalism, taken from his famous “Biglietto Speech”, make absolutely clear that he detested liberalism in religion…

“…For thirty, forty, fifty years I have resisted to the best of my powers the spirit of Liberalism in religion. Never did Holy Church need champions against it more sorely than now, when, alas! it is an error overspreading, as a snare, the whole earth; and on this great occasion, when it is natural for one who is in my place to look out upon the world, and upon Holy Church as in it, and upon her future, it will not, I hope, be considered out of place, if I renew the protest against it which I have made so often…”  Click here to read the rest of this speech

Comment:

Prepare, in the months leading up to the canonisation in October, to hear plenty of propaganda about the “liberal” Cardinal Newman from the mainstream “Catholic” media,  with emphasis on his alleged (i.e. non existent) belief that conscience reigns supreme.  Conscience, as peddled by the liberals, of course, is no such thing;  it’s simply the self-centred human mind telling the self-centred human person to do whatever he/she wants, as long as he/she “feels” it’s OK.  Really deep thinking.  But, manifestly, not the thinking of Cardinal Newman.  Just how deceitful does a so-called liberal have to be to twist the Cardinal’s beliefs asbout conscience to mean the precise opposite? 

Your views on that question welcome, but keep the answers (reasonably!) polite. ..If necessary, check out the House Rules before you begin typing 😀

Also, if you have any favourite quotes from the writings of Cardinal Newman, or titles about his life which you would recommend, feel free to post them here.  

Scottish Bishops Challenge SNP Government on Freedom of Conscience

President of Scotland’s Catholic Bishops asks First Minister to protect freedom of conscience

The President of the Bishops’ Conference of Scotland, Bishop Hugh Gilbert has written to the First Minister Nicola Sturgeon to express his concerns at the attacks launched against the SNP MP Dr Lisa Cameron (right)  following her vote against an amendment to the Northern Ireland (Executive Formation) Bill that would have lifted the legal protections presently afforded to the unborn child in Northern Ireland.

In his letter on behalf of the Catholic Church in Scotland, Bishop Gilbert calls on the SNP leader, on behalf of all those “who cherish freedom of conscience within the public square” to provide an urgent reassurance that freedom of conscience will be protected within the SNP and valued in Scottish public life, at every level.

The full text of the letter is shown below.

Letter to the First Minister

Dear First Minister,

I write following recent public comments made by Dr Lisa Cameron, SNP Member of Parliament for East Kilbride, Strathaven and Lesmahagow.

On Tuesday 9 July, Dr Cameron voted against an amendment to the Northern Ireland (Executive Formation) Bill that would have lifted the legal protections presently afforded to the unborn child in Northern Ireland. It is a long-standing parliamentary convention that votes on such ethical issues are considered matters of conscience and, thus, are not subject to the party whip. Indeed, this was confirmed in writing to Dr Cameron prior to the 9 July vote by the SNP Chief Whip, Patrick Grady MP.

In the days following the vote, however, Dr Cameron has been subject to a significant degree of hostility from many quarters, including ordinary members and officer bearers of the Scottish National Party, some of which she describes as being “nothing less than vitriolic” in nature. She adds that according to local officials it may “now be incompatible to hold pro-life views and be a SNP MP, candidate, to pass vetting or be elected in any capacity”. She further notes that, despite prompting, she has presently received no public re-assurance from the leadership of the SNP that this is not, in fact, the case. I therefore am writing to you as Leader of the Scottish National Party to seek such a public re-assurance.  [emphasis added – Ed.]

I believe I write on behalf of all who cherish freedom of conscience within the public square and hold in high regard those in public life who remain true to their conscience, even at the expense of personal popularity or political advantage.

“Moral courage is readiness to expose oneself to suffering or inconvenience which does not affect the body,” wrote the co-founder of the Scottish National Party, Sir Compton Mackenzie, in 1962, “It arises from firmness of moral principle and is independent of the physical constitution.”

Thank you for taking the time to read this letter First Minister.

I await your reply with anticipation. In the meantime, please be assured of my continued prayers and good wishes.

I am, Yours Sincerely,

Bishop Hugh Gilbert
President
Bishops’ Conference of Scotland   – Source:  website of the Catholic Parliamentary Office 

Comment: 

On this occasion, we are pleased to thank the Bishops of Scotland for their public support of Dr Lisa Cameron – and we await the response from Nicola Sturgeon with nothing akin to bated breath 😀  Predictable assurances of respect for freedom of consciences to be expected. 

To offer your support to Dr Cameron MP, you can email her   lisa.cameron.mp@parliament.uk  – for more contact details and information click here 

Scotland’s Drugs Crisis: Godless Society, Despair & Drugs… Church to Blame?

Leading the news in the print and broadcasting media across the UK today…

More than 1,100 people died from drugs in Scotland last year, new figures indicate, the worst level since records began.

There were 1,187 drug-related deaths registered in 2018 – above 1,000 for the first time and up 253 (27%) on the previous year.

The National Records of Scotland statistics indicate Scotland’s drug death rate is nearly triple the UK rate and the highest in the European Union Click here to read more…

Comment: 

Causes of, and possible cures for, Scotland’s massive drugs problem – according to the media chatterati – were varied and imaginative in the news debates today, including the provision of taxpayer funded facilities to allow addicts taking illegal drugs to consume, er… legally; this, with a view to making it easier to provide health care since we’re now to regard drug addiction as a public health issue, not a criminal activity. The quaint old-fashioned idea that it may well be both, has, very conveniently, been set aside.  How this will impact on the drug dealers, of course, is never mentioned. They may be able to argue the case for their own mental health disorder, a compulsion to sell drugs – who knows…

Not a single Roman collar to be seen among all the commentators and alleged experts, not a bishop’s mitre.  The Catholic Church in Scotland has nothing to say, it seems, on the devastating news that there are record numbers of souls going to meet their Maker following an overdose of illegal drugs, not a single possible solution or even a nod in the direction of our Godless society as, perhaps (just “perhaps”, mind, nobody’s being “judgemental” of course not –  perish the thought!)  being the reason why so many people are turning to drugs. 

Without any direction in life, and without any authoritative teaching about the definitive meaning of life, the realities of Heaven and Hell, divine revelation and the importance of exercising true Faith (not demanding God to come and show himself in a science laboratory), not to mention the confusion caused by presenting upside-down morals as normal, just maybe this terrible turn in a once Christian society has led people into despair.

Lack of religious and moral leadership doesn’t  seem to have occured to anyone reporting on this scandal; and it certainly doesn’t seem to be occurring to the clergy that their negligence in preaching what God has revealed in both Faith and Morals – and that in the public square, clearly and unambiguously – might be a contributing factor in this dreadful drugs crisis.   For, the same Catholics, lay and ordained, who are perfectly happy to take soup and sandwiches to the homeless and addicted wouldn’t dream of taking them, at the same time, an exhortation (NOT a mere “invitation”) to turn to God, in His Church, as the means given to us to live fulfilling lives in this world, and to save our souls for eternal life in the next. 

Or maybe that’s all pie in the sky (literally!) – maybe the drugs crisis IS simply a health crisis?  What do you think? 

Finally, let’s all pray for all those afflicted by drug addiction to  Saint Maximillian Mary Kolbe

 

16/7: Feast of Our Lady of Mt Carmel…

Comment: 

On this Feast of Our Lady of Mt Carmel, share your favourite prayers, novenas, hymns, experiences etc.  And perhaps reflect on the dedication of the nuns, brothers and priests of the Carmelite Order who pray and make sacrifices for the Church and the world.  The short film below about one community of Carmelite nuns is a reminder that we are perhaps not grateful enough for the sacrifices made by our Religious. 

The Theology of Mass “Preference”

With increasing frequency, I hear people saying that, while they prefer the traditional Latin Mass (and attend it when they can), they still attend the novus ordo Mass;  generally speaking, it’s easier to get to the new Mass or, in some cases, the people concerned have commitments in their parishes which they are not yet ready or willing to relinquish.  Having educated themselves on the Mass controversy, and come to the conclusion that they really ought to be attending the traditional Mass, they are still somewhat (and naturally so) attached to their parish communities.   But are they right to continue to attend the new Mass, knowing what they now know? Here’s a short talk on the question of informed Catholics continuing to attend the new Mass…

Comment: 

Imagine the reaction of a judge in any courtroom you care to name, listening to  to a defendant accused of any crime, who, while admitting his guilt sought to excuse himself by arguing that he would have “preferred” not to have committed the crime at all, but…  Is that a defence?  Aren’t we all expected to conform our behaviour to comply with the law, whether road traffic laws or the moral law?  Try running a few red lights and telling the court that you’d really have “preferred” not to do so, or excusing the murder of your annoying neighbour by insisting that it really wouldn’t be your first choice of action, your “preference”, but… 

Why, then, do we think that it’s OK to swap the new Mass for the traditional Mass when it suits us, spuriously claiming that we “prefer” the traditional Mass, so that’s all right then?  

Answer:  it’s not.  It’s really not all right.  God more than “prefers” the traditional Mass; this is the worship that He wants from us, as is clear from the history and tradition of the Church – not to mention the decimation of entire congregations since the introduction of the new Mass in recent years.   So, what any of us “prefers” is irrelevant. Goodness, we might “prefer” to spend a couple of hours clap-happy singing in the nearest Pentecostalist church –  who cares?  “Preference” is irrelevant. Our duty is to give due and true worship to God. We are quite simply not doing that at the new Mass. 

If you have some cast iron evidence to the contrary, of course, let’s hear it!                                                               

Technology Vs The Spiritual Life …

Comment: 

Some parents try to put off the day when their offspring are allowed smartphones and thus unsupervised access to the internet. This, however, can cause bad feeling and cultivate rebellious attitudes in the young towards their concerned parents. And once they reach the older teenage years, it really isn’t possible to ban things, not when the youngster has a job or unthinking relatives who buy them technological presents for birthdays and Christmas.   

Having established a routine of family prayer and spiritual reading, some parents have witnessed a weakening of their children’s faith, which, rightly or wrongly, they blame on the technological craze.  If a teenager prefers YouTube to spiritual reading, that’s a problem, they argue.  

What’s the answer?