We always post a Christmas thread for the exchange of greetings and to reflect on the Feast of Christmas, and that thread will, as usual, be posted tomorrow, but the above video allows us, first, to consider some key issues about the way Christianity is being attacked in the west, with attempts to belittle the festival of Christmas itself.
Saying “happy holidays” seems to have taken off in the USA but I don’t think it happens here – or have I missed something? How to react if it does cross The Pond… I’d be sticking with Happy Christmas – what about you?
Boris Johnson has denied that he opposes devolution as he attempted to end a major row in Scotland caused after he branded the creation of the Scottish Parliament a “disaster”.
In an address to the Scottish Conservatives virtual conference, the Prime Minister claimed his leaked comments, made in an online call to northern English Tory MPs, had not been reported “entirely accurately” and suggested he had been referring to the SNP’s “abysmal” performance in government.
Mr Johnson was reported as telling MPs that devolution had been “a disaster north of the border” and was Tony Blair’s “biggest mistake”. His comments dismayed Scottish Tories, with the Holyrood elections just six months away and the SNP already on course to claim a majority and a new mandate for a second independence referendum.
In recorded remarks to the conference, Mr Johnson said: “I know comments I made the other day on devolution have been widely reported, leaked, not entirely accurately, but never mind. “But since no press were in the room, I’ll give you my unvarnished view: the way the SNP have handled devolution in Scotland has been a disaster – from plummeting education standards, low business confidence and the lowest satisfaction ever in public services – their record is abysmal. “The key is to have policies to show how devolution can work for Scotland, the people in Scotland, rather than the SNP obsession with making devolution work against the rest of the UK.” (Taken from The Telegraph platform on YouTube)
If anyone can specify the benefits to Scotland of Devolution, in everyday life, and the Scottish Parliament as a practical and effective tool of governance, I, for one, would be interested to learn and, if necessary, revise my opinion. At the moment, I tend to agree with Boris, although, frankly, it pains me to agree with him about anything. What about you?
Nicola Sturgeon [left] has announced a draft bill will be drawn up setting out the timing, terms and question for a new Scottish independence referendum.
The first minister said that Brexit strengthened the case for Scotland to become an independent country.
Unveiling the Programme for government, Sturgeon said that a similar announcement in an independent Scotland would outline plans for an extension to the furlough scheme, more money in borrowing, a more progressive immigration system and a universal basic income.
She told MSPs that a new draft Bill will be drawn up setting out the timing and terms for a new independence referendum, as well as the question to be asked to voters if it is given the green light by Westminster.
The first minister added: “Then, at next year’s election, we will make the case for Scotland to become an independent country and seek a clear endorsement of Scotland’s right to choose our own future.”
Scottish Conservative leader Douglas Ross tweeted: “The first minister just doesn’t get it. We need to take Scotland forward and recover from this crisis together, not go back to the divisions of the past.”
Earlier this month a poll suggested support for Scottish independence has reached a record high of 55%.
The research by Panelbase found the results of the 2014 independence referendum – when 55% of Scots voted to stay in the United Kingdom – were reversed.
Pro-independence organisation Business for Scotland commissioned the poll, with chief executive Gordon MacIntyre-Kemp hailing the results as a “huge landmark” showing the “writing is very definitely on the wall for the union”.
Panelbase questioned a total of 1,011 people across Scotland between August 12 and 18 for the research.
Overall, 51% of those questioned said they support independence, 42% said they would vote to stay in the UK and 7% of voters were undecided.
When undecided voters were excluded, 55% favoured Scotland leaving the UK, with 45% preferring to stay in the union. Source…
Given the flat outright immoral legislation introduced by the SNP-led Scottish Government over the years since the Parliament became a devolved administration, could any Catholic – or anyone remotely considering themselves to be Christian – possibly consider voting for independence at this time? I can’t see it – can you?
As we prepare to go to the polls in the General Election on 12 December, it is worth reflecting on Church teaching and the principles which should guide us in deciding how to use our vote without violating God’s law.
Click here to read a guide prepared for American Catholics, which seems to be fairly comprehensive. I’ve not studied everything on that [EWTN] site, but I have checked out some key topics and I think we will all find it useful, and a source for fruitful discussion.
Below, a video clip from the trial of St Thomas More, saint and martyr, patron of lawyers and politicians, who has been an inspiration to many, including many who are not Catholics, because of his strong, conscientious insistence that God’s law must always be above any law created by man.
If the voting guide given in the introduction above still leave you with unanswered questions or doubts, feel free to ask for clarification on this thread.
Here, at Catholic Truth, we are apolitical and we discuss politics only in the context of our Catholic duty to be decent members of society, contributing, where possible, to the common good. Please, therefore engage in discussion in a spirit of respect, bearing in mind that the Church exhorts us to adhere to certain principles but does not dictate that we should support (or not) any particular political party. Our overall aim must be to take care not to offend God in the way we vote; not to support the transgression of His Moral Law. To this end we pray…
St Thomas More, intercede for us, and for all the politicians participating in the forthcoming election; guide and inspire us in the weeks ahead… Our Lady, Help of Christians, pray for us.
On a sunlit autumn day, outside a church in central London, there stands a figure — by his dress unmistakably a Catholic priest. This priest, Father Jeremy Davies, is also an exorcist. He is at the church door awaiting someone, due to arrive shortly, in need of his ministry.
The matter-of-fact and calm manner of Father Davies belies the fact that this is a man on the front line of an ancient and ongoing spiritual battle. It is one carried out by him behind closed doors in a London church on an apparently mundane weekday afternoon. Yet within those church walls the power of the Holy Name releases people from the influence of evil, frees the oppressed from wicked spirits and, in the more extreme cases, casts out demons from the possessed.
Seemingly unperturbed by the evil that he combats, Father Davies states simply: “If God asks us to do a work, then he will protect us.” Since being ordained in 1974, this priest’s primary concern has always been, rather than his own well-being, the spiritual well-being of those who seek his help; and since 1987, that concern for others included their desire to be rid of Satanic oppression. No doubt, the concern he feels about his current “cases” is similar to that he experienced when he was working as a doctor. His desire then was to cure patients of physical illness; now, it is to rid his current patients of something even more deadly.
Since the late 1970s Father Davies has been exercising the ministry of deliverance and exorcism in the Westminster Diocese. In 2019, such is the demand for his services that he exercises that ministry every week at a central London church. He agreed to speak to the Register Oct. 9.
Portrait of an Exorcist
At one time, Father Davies was one of the few exorcists in London; now, he is one of a number. It was in 1987 that the then cardinal-archbishop of Westminster, Basil Hume, asked him to become the exorcist for the diocese. Although Father Davies had at the time only limited experience of the work to be undertaken, without hesitation, he accepted his new ministry.
In some ways he was a perfect candidate. Before becoming a priest, Father Davies had trained as a medical doctor. After qualifying to practice medicine in 1968, he had practiced in remote parts of Africa, where he had encountered strange disturbances in his patients. Following his ordination in 1974, he worked as a priest in central London. Here, he encountered behaviour just as disturbed in the souls entrusted to him as he had in his former patients in Africa. Father Davies remembers “all sorts” of people coming to his presbytery, some of whom he says were “possessed or troubled.” His work as a parish priest proved an introduction to a world that is now central to his priestly ministry.
Today, he no longer runs a parish. Instead, his time is largely taken up with his work as an exorcist. An octogenarian, mentally alert and still in good health, Father Davies focuses upon his work with an air of pervading calm. In fact, his demeanor still has aspects of the “bedside manner” of any good doctor. In short, he is a skilled listener and observer.
Satan Is Real
As Father Davies awaits another troubled soul, he reflects on the recent comments allegedly made by the Jesuit superior general, Father Arturo Sosa, that, seemingly, he no longer believes that Satan exists. Father Davies shakes his head: “It’s fatal to faith and salvation to disbelieve a part of Revelation. Every part of Revelation is important and essential. Belief in Satan as a fallen angel — indeed, as the leader of the fallen angels — is an essential part of divine Revelation.”
Father Davies said that such a view as that attributed to Father Sosa is “totally against the word of God and the Catholic faith. It shows just what depths people can sink to on the path of modernism.” He paused and then added: “If he really said this, he has put himself outside the communion of the Church.” Standing in the sunshine while awaiting a soul desperately in need of deliverance ministry, Father Davies added, “I would ask him [Father Sosa] how on earth he had come to this belief.”
Father Davies was speaking to the Register just weeks before Halloween. London shops are full of paraphernalia associated with that festival. Father Davies is clear that there are two major perils associated with Halloween, both equally dangerous: “They [those who ‘celebrate’ Halloween] begin by playing games, but it can lead to people disbelieving in the devil and evil spirits, and this, in turn, can lead to a loss of the Christian faith.”
He pointed out that a “levity about such matters was fatal; playing with evil under the pretext of it being untrue is to allow evil to enter.” But evil can also enter, he explains, where there exists an unhealthy interest in the occult, leading to “an intrusion of demonic influence” through a growing fascination with it. Whichever way evil gains entry, Father Davies is clear that any dabbling in the occult “doesn’t have to be deep to be deadly.” He explained that any “tolerance of occult practices is part of a terrible deception” stemming from its source, namely, the Father of Lies. There is no such thing as a “gradation” in these matters, according to the exorcist priest. All such activity he sees as sinful, and, as with any sin, it is a means by which a soul is removed ever further from the love of God.
Gateway of Sin
It is not just the occult that is a gateway for the entry of evil into the lives of those unfortunate enough to experience it, though. Father Davies cites other ways in which evil can enter and linger, ultimately destroying the soul. He said that this can occur by means of “every sin, but sins particularly bound up with the preternatural and with grave sin — such as abortion and pornography — and anything against our created nature, including in the realm of sexual morality.”
Interestingly, Father Davies still sees potential opportunities for good in the fact that Halloween has gained an ever-higher profile year by year. “Halloween is a good opportunity,” he suggests, “to teach the faith and help all of us — especially children — to understand the reality of evil and the truth of Christ and his Church.” It is the occasion, he feels, to “teach against” the festival using the word of God and the “clear teaching of the Church.” This now-omnipresent paganized holiday is the moment, he says, “to warn the world not just to avoid Halloween; it is also an opportunity to tell people about Christ.”
Illusion and Reality
Exorcists have been the stuff of media fantasy since the 1970s. The 1973 film The Exorcist was a worldwide box-office smash and established a cinematic sub-genre devoted to the subject as well as a hackneyed template for any related plot. Needless to say, most of these films concerning exorcisms have been inaccurate, sensational and wholly forgettable. But there is nothing about Father Davies that is remotely sensational or that appears out of the ordinary — as, without a glance, people pass by him on a busy London street.
Father Davies began his ministry as one of only a very few exorcists in London, and, then, there was little contact among those priests. But over the intervening three decades, this has changed. Over the years, as his ministry has grown, so too has communication between the British and the worldwide network of priests who are charged with this work. In 1990 Father Davies, along with five other priests, including Father Gabriele Amorth, founded the International Association of Catholic Exorcists. This organization holds an international conference every other year in Rome. In addition, the British-based exorcists also hold a national conference. Across London exorcists meet on a regular basis to coordinate their fight against the forces that spiritually oppress so many. The identities of diocesan exorcists are only revealed to those in need of their help. The work of these priests and the laypeople who assist them is largely hidden from the public view.
It is time for Father Davies to leave. His services are required.
As he gets ready to leave, I am reminded of what a holy priest, now long since dead, once said of the streets of London, namely that they were “full of demons.”
When this is put to him, Father Davies replies, “That’s true.”
And with that he pushed open the church door once more to enter into his ministry.
(The above taken from As Halloween Approaches, an Exorcist Speaks on the Reality of Satan – An interview with a London priest who battles the devil. National Catholic Register – emphases added).
When the family in a house in Rutherglen (Diocese of Motherwell, though outskirts of Glasgow city) was reported as experiencing “paranormal activity”, a priest went into the home to give a “blessing”; however, the problem persisted and, as this Daily Record piece reports, the “Catholic Church failed to respond” to journalists’ enquiries. That might have been because – as we were reliably told at the time – Scotland doesn’t have an exorcist any more, so beyond a priest saying some prayers and blessing the home, there didn’t seem a lot more the Church authorities in the diocese could do to rid the family of their unwelcome supernatural guests.
The question for this thread has to be: should Scotland have at least one exorcist, given that the city of London hosts a meeting for the English exorcists on a regular basis…Or is it the case that Scotland is Satan-free? Really?
The woman behind this court case, Gina Miller, was all smiles today, absolutely delighted, speaking victoriously outside the Supreme Court in London, after winning her anti-Brexit, and anti-democracy case. Here’s one editor’s opinion of her and her shenanigans to stop Brexit – this editor doesn’t trust herself to find words that would keep her beyond the scope of the Thought Police.
Is anyone out there actually surprised at the decision of the Supreme Court? There is, is there not, a total absence of morality in the world of politics today – remember, the MPs in court today supporting Gina Miller’s efforts to stop Brexit (and many others in Parliament) don’t give a toss about the 17.4 million of us who voted to leave the EU. That’s surely more than merely anti-democratic – but immoral as well. Agreed?
In Parliament last night, Prime Minister Johnson was in very good form, firmly insisting that the UK will leave the EU on 31 October, despite all the disgraceful shenanigans of the “remainer” MPs to stop Brexit. Rushed through legislation to try to tie the Prime Minister’s hands did not appear to faze him at all, as he proceeded with assurances that the UK will leave on the 31 October, as promised to the electorate. Shocking scenes, staged by MPs, furious that all their demonic efforts had apparently failed, took place in the House of Commons as the procedure began for suspending Parliament for five weeks, prior to a Queen’s Speech and a new session of Parliament.
Are these scenes evidence of diabolical activity – or simply another instance of frustrated “remainers” refusing – like spoilt children – to take “yes” [we want out of the EU] for an answer? Would someone please explain to me what is so attractive about remaining in the EU which, more or less everyone agrees (leavers and remainers), is a corrupt outfit? Why the desperation on the part of the “remoaners” not to leave? I don’t get it…
Below, an extract from the Statement by President Donald Tusk on the draft guidelines on the framework for the future relationship with the UK published on the European Council website on 3 March, 2018…
“…Now, coming to the core of our future economic relationship. During my talks in London last Thursday, and in her speech last Friday, Prime Minister Theresa May confirmed that the UK will leave the Single Market, leave the customs union and leave the jurisdiction of the ECJ (European Court of Justice). Therefore, it should come as no surprise that the only remaining possible model is a free trade agreement. I hope that it will be ambitious and advanced – and we will do our best, as we did with other partners, such as Canada recently – but anyway it will only be a trade agreement.
I propose that we aim for a trade agreement covering all sectors and with zero tariffs on goods. Like other free trade agreements, it should address services. And in fisheries, reciprocal access to fishing waters and resources should be maintained…” Ends.
When Brexiteer MPs have mentioned the above offer in TV interviews, they have been brushed off, the impression given that this is now in the past, was rejected or is no longer available. No need to ask why. We know that the mainstream media, along with the majority of MPs in Parliament do not want to leave the EU and are doing everything in their power to stop Brexit. “STOP BREXIT” was actually the official slogan of the Liberal Democrats in the recent EU elections, with other parties openly campaigning to overturn the 2016 referendum result, albeit hiding behind the demand for a second referendum, confirmatory vote etc.
The level of dishonesty, the machinations being employed, must surely concern anyone considering Brexit through the prism of Christianity. Below, Conservative, Steve Baker MP, who said in media interviews last weekend that he was giving consideration to standing as a candidate in the current leadership election to be the next Conservative leader/Prime Minister, speaks about Donald Tusk’s offer in his resignation speech in Parliament, following his resignation from the Government on the grounds that he was unable to support Theresa May’s Withdrawal Agreement/”deal”.
Given the level of dishonesty, double-speak, and the various machinations being employed to prevent Brexit, isn’t it time for everyone who values truth and integrity, certainly every follower of Christ, to stand full square behind the 2016 vote and insist that the UK Parliament implements Brexit? Christ, remember, said: “Let your ‘yes’ be ‘yes’ and your ‘no’ be ‘no’ – everything else comes from the Evil One” (Matthew 5:37).
17.4 people across the UK said YES to leaving the UK, despite huge pressure from the Government to vote to remain, and subsequent polls and interviews reveal that our YES meant YES notwithstanding attempts to rig and/or interpret results to show the opposite. So how are we to interpret the fact that Donald Tusk’s above offer was not explored by the UK negotiating team, alongside the fact that the remainer lobby continues to speak about the impossibility of being able to agree a “deal”? What’s going on? And should we all be praying that Steve Baker puts his name forward for the leadership / premiership, since he would, more likely than not, hold the powers-that-be in the EU to that offer?
Note: as always in Brexit discussions, our concern is not with the various political parties and their policies, or with the voting records of individual MPs, but focuses purely on the issues surrounding Brexit. Regular bloggers and readers will know that I am apolitical in that, for a long time now, I have been forced to spoil my voting paper (by writing a note to the effect that I cannot support the Godless laws introduced/supported by all of the above) because all UK political parties have supported the introduction of laws which contradict God’s moral law and so, in conscience, I am unable to vote for any of them. I voted for The Brexit Party in the EU elections purely on the Brexit ticket.
Click here to read a news report dated 13 May, 2019, which includes a video clip of a Scotsman, member of a BBC TV audience, pointing out that the one million plus Scots who voted to leave the EU are being “airbrushed” out of the debate. He notes that more Scots voted to leave the EU than voted for the SNP in the last General Election. In fact, at least a third of the Scottish population didn’t vote at all, so the 62% figure bandied about represents only that proportion of the population who bothered to vote. Yet, we hear the mantra “Scotland voted to remain” trotted out week after week in the Westminster Parliament by SNP MPs, and “Scotland won’t be dragged out of the EU against our will” – “dragged” a clever vocable, repeated over and over again, to give the impression of oppression.
This is dishonest in the extreme. Still, how many Catholics think nothing of voting for dishonest politicians, since, they would argue, “everybody lies”… Or, at the very least, “all politicians lie”.
Is that true? DOES “everybody lie” … DO all politicians lie? And, if so, what can be done about it? Do priests need to preach more about the basics among the Ten Commandments, to drive home the gravity of lying? And surely – even if you are a Scot who voted to remain in the EU – surely you disapprove of the way, for three years now, the “remain” politicians in Scotland have perpetuated the falsehood that “Scotland voted to remain” … or maybe not – share your thoughts!