Pope Francis: Satan seduces by disguising evil as good

by Elise Harris

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.- On Monday’s feast of the archangels Pope Francis spoke of the ongoing battle between the devil and mankind, encouraging attendees to pray to the angels, who have been charged to defend us.

“He presents things as if they were good, but his intention is destruction. And the angels defend us,” the Roman Pontiff told those gathered for his Sept. 29 Mass in the Vatican’s Saint Martha residence chapel.

The Bishop of Rome began by pointing to the day’s readings taken from Daniel 7 in which the prophet has a vision of God the Father on a throne of fire giving Christ dominion over the world, and Revelation 12, which recounts the battle in which Satan, as a large dragon, is cast out of heaven by St. Michael.

Noting how these are strong images portraying “the great dragon, the ancient serpent” who “seduces all of inhabited earth,” the Pope also drew attention to Christ’s words to Nathanael in the day’s Gospel from John when he tells him “You will see heaven opened and the angels of God ascending and descending upon the Son of man.”

All of these readings, he said, speak of “the struggle between God and the devil” which “takes place after Satan tries to destroy the woman who is about to give birth to a son.”

“Satan always tries to destroy man: the man that Daniel saw there, in glory, and whom Jesus told Nathaniel would come in glory,” the Roman Pontiff observed, explaining that “from the beginning the Bible speaks to us of this: Satan’s (use of) seduction to destroy.”

Envy could be the devil’s motive, he said, pointing to how Psalm 8 tells us ‘You have made man superior to the angels.’ And that angel of great intelligence could not bear this humiliation; that a lower creature was made superior to him; and he tries to destroy it.”

Pope Francis then noted how “So many projects, except for one’s own sins, but many, many projects for mankind’s dehumanization, are his work, simply because he hates mankind.”

He continued by explaining that although the Bible tells us that the devil is astute and cunning in his attacks, we have the angels to defend us.

“They defend mankind and defend the God-man, the superior man, Jesus Christ who is the perfection of humanity, the most perfect.”

“This is why the Church honors the angels, because they are the ones who will be in the glory of God – they are in the glory of God – because they defend the great hidden mystery of God – namely, that the Word was made flesh.”

It is therefore the responsibility of the People of God “to safeguard man, the man Jesus,” the Pope went on, because “he is the man who gives life to all men.”

However this is not easy because Satan has invented “humanistic explanations that go against man, against humanity and against God” in order to destroy us.

“This struggle is a daily reality in Christian life, in our hearts, in our lives, in our families, in our people, in our churches,” the Pope went on, adding that “if we do not struggle, we will be defeated.”

“But the Lord gave this task primarily to the angels: to do battle and win,” he said, drawing attention to the final song of Revelation which reads “now have salvation and power come, and the kingdom of our God and the power of his Anointed. For the accuser of our brothers is cast out, who accuses them before our God day and night.”

Pope Francis concluded his homily by encouraging those present to pray to the Archangels Michael, Gabriel and Raphael, and to recite the prayer to Saint Michael often.

We should do this “so he may continue to do battle and defend the greatest mystery of mankind: that the Word was made Man, died and rose again. This is our treasure. That he may battle on to safeguard it.”

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Praying the Rosary

Fatima, including the later apparitions to Sr. Lucia, is the series of approved apparitions where Mary said most, which is fitting given that it is the most important. And yet even here the entire discourse can easily be fitted onto no more than four or five sides of A4 paper.

Words spoken by Mary

13 May 1917

“Do not be afraid, I will not harm you.”

“I come from heaven.”

“I have come to ask you to come here for six months on the 13th day of the month, at this same hour. Later I shall say who I am and what I desire. And I shall return here yet a seventh time.”

Lucia then asked if they would go to heaven and she was told yes, she and Jacinta would go to heaven, but Francisco would need to say many rosaries first.

Statue of Our Lady of Fatima at Cova da IriaLucia asked about two young women who had died recently, and was told that one was in heaven and the other, her friend Amelia, would be in purgatory “until the end of world.”

“Are you willing to offer yourselves to God and bear all the sufferings He wills to send you, as an act of reparation for the conversion of sinners?”

“Then you are going to have much to suffer, but the grace of God will be your comfort.”

13 June 1917

“Say the Rosary every day, to bring peace to the world and the end of the war.”
“I want you to come on the 13th of next month, [July] to pray the Rosary every day, and to learn to read. Later, I will tell you what I want.”

“If he is converted, he will be cured during the year.” (reference to a sick person)

“I will take Jacinta and Francisco shortly; but you will stay here for some time to come. Jesus wants to use you to make Me known and loved. He wishes to establish the devotion to My Immaculate Heart throughout the world. I promise salvation to whoever embraces it; these souls will be dear to God, like flowers put by Me to adorn his throne.”

“No, my daughter. Are you suffering a great deal? Don’t lose heart. I will never forsake you. My Immaculate Heart will be your refuge and the way that will lead you to God.”

13 July 1917

“I want you to come here on the 13th of next month, [August] to continue to pray the Rosary every day in honour of Our Lady of the Rosary, in order to obtain peace for the world and the end of the war, because only she can help you.”

“Continue to come here every month. In October, I will tell you who I am and what I want, and I will perform a miracle for all to see and believe.”

Lucia made some requests for sick people, to which Mary replied that she would cure some but not others, and that all must say the rosary to obtain such graces, before continuing: “Sacrifice yourselves for sinners, and say many times, especially when you make some sacrifice: O Jesus, it is for love of You, for the conversion of sinners, and in reparation for the sins committed against the Immaculate Heart of Mary.”

“You have seen hell where the souls of poor sinners go. To save them, God wishes to establish in the world devotion to my Immaculate Heart. If what I say to you is done, many souls will be saved and there will be peace. The war is going to end; but if people do not cease offending God, a worse one will break out during the pontificate of Pius XI. When you see a night illumined by an unknown light, know that this is the great sign given you by God that he is about to punish the world for its crimes, by means of war, famine, and persecutions of the Church and of the Holy Father.

“To prevent this, I shall come to ask for the consecration of Russia to my Immaculate Heart, and the Communion of Reparation on the First Saturdays. If my requests are heeded, Russia will be converted, and there will be peace; if not, she will spread her errors throughout the world, causing wars and persecutions of the Church. The good will be martyred, the Holy Father will have much to suffer, various nations will be annihilated. In the end, my Immaculate Heart will triumph. The Holy Father will consecrate Russia to me and she will be converted, and a period of peace will be granted to the world.”

Mary specifically told Lucia not to tell anyone about the secret at this stage, apart from Francisco, before continuing: “When you pray the Rosary, say after each mystery: ‘O my Jesus, forgive us, save us from the fire of hell. Lead all souls to heaven, especially those who are most in need.’ “

Lucia asked if there was anything more, and after assuring her that there was nothing more, Mary disappeared off into the distance.

August 1917

“Go again to the Cova da Iria on the 13th and continue to say the Rosary every day.

Mary also said she would perform a miracle, so all would believe, and that if they had not been kidnapped it would have been even greater. Lucia then asked how the growing shrine should be administered, and requested cures for the sick, being told that some would be cured during the year.

“Pray, pray very much, and make sacrifices for sinners; for many souls go to hell, because there are none to sacrifice themselves and pray for them.”

13 September 1917

“Continue to pray the Rosary in order to obtain the end of the war. In October Our Lord will come, as well as Our Lady of Dolours and Our Lady of Carmel. Saint Joseph will appear with the Child Jesus to bless the world. God is pleased with your sacrifices. He does not want you to sleep with the rope on, but only to wear it during the daytime.”

Lucia then began to put forward the petitions for cures, to be told: “Yes, I will cure some, but not others. In October I will perform a miracle so that all may believe.”

13 October 1917

“I want to tell you that a chapel is to be built here in my honour. I am the Lady of the Rosary. Continue always to pray the Rosary every day. The war is going to end, and the soldiers will soon return to their homes.”

Lucia made some requests, being informed that people must amend their lives and ask forgiveness of their sins if they wanted healings or conversions. “Do not offend the Lord our God any more, because He is already so much offended.”

Later Apparitions to Sr. Lucia

By 1925 Lucia, who was now 18, had become a postulant with the Sisters of St. Dorothy at Pontevedra in Spain, and on Thursday 10 December, the Blessed Virgin, accompanied by the Child Jesus on a little cloud, appeared to her in her cell. Lucia recounted that Mary rested her hand on her shoulder, while showing her a heart encircled by thorns in her other hand.

The Child Jesus spoke first: “Have pity on the Heart of your Most Holy Mother. It is covered with the thorns with which ungrateful men pierce it at every moment, and there is no one to remove them with an act of reparation.”

Then Mary said:”My daughter, look at My Heart surrounded with thorns with which ungrateful men pierce it at every moment by their blasphemies and ingratitude. You, at least, try to console me, and say that I promise to assist at the hour of death, with all the graces necessary for salvation, all those who, on the first Saturday of five consecutive months go to confession and receive Holy Communion, recite five decades of the Rosary and keep me company for a quarter of an hour while meditating on the mysteries of the Rosary, with the intention of making reparation to me.”

The Child Jesus again appeared to Lucia in February 1926 to encourage her to propagate this devotion, and additionally on the night of 29-30 May 1930; as she was praying before the Blessed Sacrament, she received an interior locution explaining why it was necessary to have a communion of reparation on five Saturdays.

She explained later that she had been given to understand that this related to the five main types of blasphemies and offences committed against the Immaculate Heart of Mary: that is against the Immaculate Conception; against Mary’s Virginity; against her Divine Maternity and her spiritual motherhood of mankind; for the offences of those who encourage in the hearts of children indifference, contempt and even hatred of her, and finally as reparation for those who outrage her in her holy images.

On 13 June 1929 Lucia saw another important apparition involving Mary as she was making a Holy Hour in the convent chapel at Tuy in Spain, as was her custom on Thursday nights from eleven to twelve. She was alone, praying the prayers of the Angel in the dim light of the sanctuary lamp when,

“Suddenly the whole chapel was illumined by a supernatural light, and above the altar appeared a Cross of light, reaching to the ceiling. In a brighter light on the upper part of the Cross, could be seen the face of a man and his body as far as the waist; upon his breast was a dove of light; nailed to the Cross was the body of another man. A little below the waist, I could see a chalice and a large Host suspended in the air, onto which drops of blood were falling from the Face of Jesus Crucified and from the wound in His side.

These drops ran down onto the Host and fell into the chalice. Beneath the right arm of the Cross was Our Lady and in her hand was her Immaculate Heart. (It was Our Lady of Fatima, with her Immaculate Heart in her left hand, without sword or roses, but with a crown of thorns and flames). Under the left arm of the Cross, large letters, as if of crystal clear water which ran down upon the altar, formed these words: ‘Grace and Mercy.’ “

At this point Lucia explained that she understood the apparition was a representation of the Holy Trinity, as she heard Mary speak to her: “The moment has come in which God asks the Holy Father, in union with all the Bishops in the world, to make the consecration of Russia to my Immaculate Heart, promising to save it by this means. There are so many souls whom the Justice of God condemns for sins committed against me, that I have come to ask reparation: sacrifice yourself for this intention and pray.”

Lucia told all this to her confessor who ordered her to write it down, and she also said that later on Jesus had spoken as follows to her: “They did not wish to heed My request. Like the king of France, they will repent and do it, but it will be late. Russia will have already spread her errors throughout the world, provoking wars and persecutions of the Church; the Holy Father will have much to suffer.”

Sources: Kondor, Fatima in Lucia’s own words; cf. De Marchi, Fatima from the beginning;Martins & Fox, Documents on Fatima; Fox, Fatima Today.

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Taken from: http://www.theotokos.org.uk/pages/approved/words/wordfati.html

Pope Francis mourns three Italian nuns murdered at their convent

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Hamilton Spectator
ROME/BUJUMBURA Pope Francis on Monday led the Catholic Church’s mourning of three elderly Italian nuns, killed in Burundi following two separate attacks on the convent where they were serving as missionaries.

Sisters Olga Raschietti and Lucia Pulici, aged 75 and 82, were killed near the Burundian capital of Bujumbura on Sunday. Sister Bernadetta Boggian, 79, died following a second overnight attack on the premises.

“The Holy Father begs the Lord to welcome into his kingdom of peace and light these three faithful and devout nuns,” the Vatican said in a condolence message to the Bishop of Bujumbura, Monsignor Evariste Ngoyagoye.

POPE FRANCIS

In a separate telegram to the nuns’ superior, Francis said he hoped that their spilt blood “may become the seed of hope to build true fraternity between peoples.”

Raschietti and Pulici were attacked while people staying in the parish compound were attending an evening mass, a witness said.

“I saw a man climbing the wall of the convent, and then we heard from people in the convent that two nuns had been beheaded with a knife,” Jean-Marie Niyonkuru said.

He said a Burundian convent employee was also murdered.

The diocese of the northern Italian town of Parma, to which the nuns from the Xaverian Missionary Society of Mary were attached, said the murder of Raschietti and Pulici was the apparent “tragic result of a burglary by a deranged person.”

It also said that Boggian was “fatally wounded in a knife attack” that took place despite stepped up security measures at the convent.

Legislator Remy Barampama from the constituency where the killings took place condemned them, saying the convent had done “a lot of good and charity efforts” for local residents.

In 2011, gunmen attacked a convent in northern Ngozi province, killing a Croatian nun and an Italian aid worker. Two men who were jailed for the killings had stolen money from the convent.

The Italian nuns were based in a convent in Kamenge, a district north of Bujumbura that has long been a hotspot of ethnic violence.

Tensions have recently increased in the eastern African country, which is still reeling from a 1993-2006 civil war between the Hutu and Tutsi ethnic groups.

Spectator Wire Services

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Taken from: http://www.thespec.com/news-story/4837472-pope-francis-mourns-three-italian-nuns-murdered-at-their-convent/

 

 

Birth of Mary

 

September 8th  
A. Valentini  
The present Feast forms a link between the New and the Old Testament. It shows that Truth succeeds symbols and figures and that the New Covenant replaces the Old. Hence, all creation sings with joy, exults, and participates in the joy of this day…. This is, in fact, the day on which the Creator of the world constructed His temple; today is the day on which by a stupendous project a creature becomes the preferred dwelling of the Creator” (Saint Andrew of Crete). “Let us celebrate with joy the birth of the Virgin Mary, of whom was born the Sun of Justice…. Her birth constitutes the hope and the light of salvation for the whole world…. Her image is light for the whole Christian people” (From the Liturgy). As these texts so clearly indicate, an atmosphere of joy and light pervades the Birth of the Virgin Mary.   1. Historical Details about the Feast The origin of this Feast is sought in Palestine. It goes back to the consecration of a church in Jerusalem, which tradition identifies as that of the present basilica of St. Ann. At Rome the Feast began to be kept toward the end of the 7th century, brought there by Eastern monks. Gradually and in varied ways it spread to the other parts of the West in the centuries that followed. From the 13th century on, the celebration assumed notable importance, becoming a Solemnity with a major Octave and preceded by a Vigil calling for a fast. The Octave was reduced to a simple one during the reform of St. Pius X and was abolished altogether under the reform of Pius XII in 1955. The present Calendar characterizes the Birth of Mary as a “Feast,” placing it on the same plane as the Visitation. For some centuries now, the Birth has been assigned to September 8 both in the East and in the West, but in ancient times it was celebrated on different dates from place to place. However, when the Feast of the Immaculate Conception (which has a later origin than that of the Birth) was extended to the whole Church, the Birth little by little became assigned everywhere to September 8: nine months after the Solemnity of the Immaculate Conception.   2. At the Heart of Salvation As we know, the Gospels have not transmitted to us anything about the birth of the Virgin Mary. Their attention is completely centered on the mystery of Christ and His salvific mission. The birth of Mary is recounted by the Protevangelium of James (5:2), an apocryphal writing from the end of the 2nd century. Subsequent tradition is based on this account. The description – although in the manner of an apocryphal document – obviously presents an important historical event: the birth of the Mother of the Lord. But the problem that concerns us here is the significance of this event. In the case of all the Saints, the Church commemorates their birthday on the day of their return to the Lord. However, in the cases of St. John the Baptizer and the Blessed Virgin, it also celebrates the day of their earthly birth. This is a singular fact already emphasized in ancient times, for example, by Paschasius Radbertus (d. about 859). The reason for this fact is not found primarily in the greatness or the privileges of the persons involved but in the singular mission that was theirs in the History of Salvation. In this light, the birth of the Blessed Virgin is considered to be – like that of John the Baptizer – in direct relationship with the coming of the Savior of the world. Thus, the birth and existence of Marysimilar to and even more than those of the Baptizer – take on a significance that transcends her own person. It is explained solely in the context of the History of Salvation, connected with the People of God of the Old Covenant and the New. Mary’s birth lies at the confluence of the two Testaments – bringing to an end the stage of expectation and the promises and inaugurating the new times of grace and salvation in Jesus Christ. Mary, the Daughter of Zion and ideal personification of Israel, is the last and most worthy representative of the People of the Old Covenant but at the same time she is “the hope and the dawn of the whole world.” With her, the elevated Daughter of Zion, after a long expectation of the promises, the times are fulfilled and a new economy is established (LG 55). The birth of Mary is ordained in particular toward her mission as Mother of the Savior. Her existence is indissolubly connected with that of Christ: it partakes of a unique plan of predestination and grace. God’s mysterious plan regarding the incarnation of the Word embraces also the Virgin who is His Mother. In this way, the Birth of Mary is inserted at the very heart of the History of Salvation.   3. Christological Orientations The Biblical readings of the Feast have a clear Christological- salvific orientation that forms the backdrop for contemplating the figure of Mary. Micah 5:1-4a. The Prophet announces the coming of the Lord of Israel who will come forth from Bethlehem of Judah. The Mother of the Messiah, presented as one about to give birth, will give life to the prince and pastor of the house of David who will bring justice and peace. She will work with the Messiah to bring forth a new people. Romans 8.28-30. This passage does not speak directly about Mary but about the believer justified by the grace of Christ and gifted with the indwelling of the Spirit. He or she has been chosen and called from all eternity to share Christ’s life and glory. This is true in a privileged manner for Mary, Spouse and Temple of the Holy Spirit, Mother of God’s Son, and intimately united with Him in a Divine plan of predestination and grace. Matthew 1:1-16, 18-23. The meaning of this seemingly and genealogy is theologically profound: to place Jesus, the MessiahLord, within the dynastic tree of His people. He is a descendant, and in fact “the descendant,” of Abraham (cf. Gal 3:16) and the Patriarchs in accord with the promises, and He is the semi-heir of the Prophets. The ring that united Christ with His people is Mary, Daughter of Zion and Mother of the Lord. The virginity stressed by the Gospel text is the sign of the Divine origin of the Son and of the absolute newness that now breaks forth in the history of human beings. The Christological-salvific purpose and tone dominate not only the Bible readings but also the Eucharistic Celebration and the Liturgy of the Hours. It has been observed that, although the texts of this Feast’s celebration are less rich than those of other Marian feasts, they do have one outstanding characteristic: “The number of themes is rather restricted, [but] there are extremely numerous invitations to joy” (J. Pascher). Indeed, joy pervades the whole of this Feast’s liturgy. If many “will rejoice” at the birth of the precursor (cf. Lk 1:14), a much greater joy is stirred up by the birth of the Mother of the Savior. Hence, this is a Feast that serves as a prelude to the “joy to all people” brought about by the Birth of the Son of God at Christmas and expressed by the singing of hymns and carols. Added to this theme of joy on this Marian Feast is that of light because with Mary’s birth the darkness is dispersed and there rises in the world the dawn that announces the Sun of Justice, Christ the Lord. Taken from: Dictionary of Mary (NY: Catholic Book, 1985) Catholic Book Publishing Company 257 W. 17th St. NY 10011 (212)243-4515
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Jesus Christ as “the firstborn of every creature” (Col. 1:15)

Counterrevolutionary Considerations

Saint Benedict Center’s conference will take place very soon (October 11-12). As I prepare my own comments on this year’s theme, I thought I would give both a plug for, and a sneak preview of, what our attendees will behearing in a little over a month.

Our theme is “Catholic and Counterrevolutionary.” For my purposes, I will define “counterrevolutionary” as “of or pertaining to the restoration of a pre-revolutionary state of affairs.” In our thought here at Saint Benedict Center, a“revolution” and things “revolutionary” are necessarily bad. The French and Russian Revolutions are the notable historical examples that clearly illustrate the badness thereof, but revolution, as a spiritual ideal, predates these: It is seen in the ideals of Freemasonry, in the Enlightenment, in Protestantism, in the Renaissance rejection of Medieval Christian Civilization — indeed, in the very Fall of Man itself, and in that earlier Fall of Lucifer and his rebel angels.

If we agree with Saul Alinsky that the first radical — another name for a revolutionary — was Lucifer, it is not because, as Alinsky does, we think that revolution is a good thing. (Here is the dedication on the opening page of Rules for Radicals: “Lest we forget at least an over-the-shoulder acknowledgment to the very first radical: from all our legends, mythology, and history… the first radical known to man who rebelled against the establishment and did it so effectively that he at least won his own kingdom — Lucifer.”)

If Lucifer is the first revolutionary, Jesus Christ is the first counterrevolutionary. I say “first,” not in order of chronology, but in that higher order of metaphysical primacy, according to which Saint Paul refers to Jesus Christ as “the firstborn of every creature” (Col. 1:15), “the firstborn from the dead”(Col. 1:18), and “the firstborn amongst many brethren” (Rom. 8:29). Jesus Christ came to restore the pre-revolutionary state of affairs. That is, He came to restore man to God’s grace and to reverse the worst effects of the Fall without altering some of its other effects.

Before Original Sin, Adam enjoyed infused knowledge in his intellect, loving obedience in his will, spontaneous virtue in his emotions, and no sickness or death in the body; after the fall, he is punished with ignorance in the intellect, malice in the will, concupiscence in the emotions, and suffering and death in the body.

God Himself had to grant the remedies. These are principally two: The Divine Law and grace. These heal ignorance and malice, but do not remove concupiscence; nor do they do away with death. Our way back to God must therefore, include the suffering consequent upon resisting temptation and being resigned in the face of death. We must — to use the Ignatian phrase — agere contra, act against our sinful inclinations. That hurts.

The French ultramontane thinker, Joseph de Maistre, said: “The Counter-Revolution will not be a reverse revolution, but the reverse of the Revolution.”Revolution corrodes order, whereas the Counterrevolution restores it. The revolutionary tears down, while the counterrevolutionary builds up. The revolutionary is a bully, a murderer; he hurls Molotov cocktails and terrorizes noncombatants. Counterrevolutionaries may not descend to such methods. Our task is harder, but while it appears that the progress of history is against us, we know that the Lord of History is for us.“If God be for us, who is against us?” (Rom. 8:31). History is full of unexpected good turns that make those words of Jesus echo in our ears: “Fear not, little flock, for it hath pleased your Father to give you a kingdom” (Luke 12:32).

Today’s Catholic counterrevolutionary does not simply seek to reestablish the pre-Revolutionary status quo — if by that status quo, we mean some social order predating France’s Revolution. No, today’s Catholic counterrevolutionary must seek to establish society according to God’s will. In so doing, he seeks to do his part to cooperate with the Trinity in answering these two petitions of the Lord’s Prayer: “Thy kingdom come. Thy will be done on earth as it is in Heaven.”

We would be mistaken if we became mere antiquarians or enthusiasts of an earlier age seeking the literal reestablishment, for instance, of the order of the Middle Ages, of the late patristic age, or of Spain as it was in the Counter-Reformation. Many individuals and families seeking intelligently and diligently to do God’s will may produce a society (however small) that vaguely resembles one of those, but it is the doing of God’s will that matters.

We see here a direct correlation toward what is counterrevolutionary and what is holy: God’s will is one with Himself; God’s willis God. When we conform our will to God’s, we unite ourselves to God. Now, union with God is the essence of sanctity. Those seeking to do God’s will in society are also seeking for sanctity. If they are not doing so for themselves as individuals and their families as small social units, then they are going about things the wrong way.

The Catholic counterrevolutionary has for his weapons the theological virtues and the gifts of the Holy Ghost. The counterrevolutionary also realizes the value of the Cross. Seeing suffering in the supernatural light of Faith, Hope, and Charity, he realizes that the Cross is our way to salvation. The revolutionary aims to make a painless world, a utopia, and ends up causing everyone tremendous pain. He speaks of a bloodless struggle and ends up spilling gallons of blood.

(An aside: Did you ever notice how the vast majority of futuristic films are dystopian in nature? My theory is that somehow, the Hollywood liberal progressive realizes deep down inside that his favorite ideas are actually horribly destructive.)

The counterrevolutionary is no utopian, and realizes that suffering is necessary for his aims, but he embraces that suffering himself, in union with that first Counterrevolutionary.

The revolutionaries and their revolutions will cause us suffering. In God’s admirable economy, this very suffering is one of the causes of our own sanctification, and therefore one of the greatest weapons against the revolutionaries and their revolutions. This is why Christ remedied the worst effects of the fall without altering them all. Salvation is now possible through the Cross. These words of a great spiritual writer could be directed to today’s would-be Catholic counterrevolutionary:“To be able to say Thy Will be done immediately and calmly in the midst of suffering — that is the perfection at which we must aim.” (They Speak by Silences by A Carthusian, p. 41.)

If we profit from the suffering our revolutionaries inflict on us, we fulfill the words of the psalmist: “They prepared a snare for my feet; and they bowed down my soul. They dug a pit before my face, and they are fallen into it” (Ps. 56:7).

If readers would like to hear more “counterrevolutionary considerations,” attendance at our conference is encouraged!

In the Immaculate Heart of Mary,

Brother André Marie, M.I.C.M.

The inconvenient truth is we’ve been sold a PUP on China which is ‘a totalitarian regime’

 

 Claire Harvey

Claire Harvey Source: Supplied

China — what a great place. Fabulous. We love it. Solid friend to Australia. Won’t hear a bad word about the joint.
That, apparently, is the only ­acceptable opinion nowadays on the great nation to our north.
And when anyone raises even a murmur to the contrary, they’re a moron. A loose cannon. A threat to the balance of trade. Unrepresentative swill. If they have any sense, they’ll apologise quick-smart.
Just to be clear, this is not a ­defence of Clive Palmer.
It’s just a little note of puzzlement at the way his remarks about the ­People’s Republic have been almost universally interpreted by people with public voices — from politicians to journalists and academics.
Everyone in the public domain has been rushing to agree with one ­another in revulsion at the sentiments expressed by Clive and his PUP senator Jacqui Lambie.
Two weeks ago Clive Palmer said the Chinese were “mongrels” and “bastards”, that they operated a totalitarian regime, that they wanted to take Australia’s mineral resources without paying, and that they shot their own people. Palmer subsequently issued a grovelling apology to the Chinese ambassador.
Lambie followed her leader by warning “China is controlled by an aggressive, anti-democratic, totalitarian government. We need to ­double the size and capacity of our military right now”.
Well, smite me with a bolt of lightning for this heresy — but they’re right, aren’t they? At least half-right?
OK, so both went way too far, and Palmer certainly is hypocritical: he was a big China fan until his mining joint-venture with a state-owned ­Chinese company turned into an ­expensive, litigious disaster.
Palmer United Party leader Clive Palmer.

Palmer United Party leader Clive Palmer. Source: News Corp Australia

And it’s very easy to make fun of Lambie, with her scraped-up hair and wacky scarves, her fluency in Hansonese and bossy, exasperated string of non-sequiturs. But why can’t the rest of our politicians momentarily teleport themselves out of whatever Canberra wine bar they’re slurping viognier in, and hear her words as the rest of Australia hears them?
For all Lambie’s flaws, she delivers a line better than Bill Shorten: punchier, snappier, with more cut-through.
Lambie and Palmer’s China rhetoric may sound hysterical to those of us accustomed to more measured mumbling about human rights cough-cough-less-than-ideal-ahem.
But how do they sound to low-wage Australians worried about Chinese workers on 457 visas, or about Chinese investors driving the price of new apartments through the roof?
The truth, no matter how inconvenient, is that China is a totalitarian regime — a repressive place where ­arbitrary detention, forced relocation, land seizures, official corruption, police and military brutality, religious repression and interference with civil liberties go on every single day.
The Chinese national flag: Picture: Vincent Yu, AP Photo

The Chinese national flag: Picture: Vincent Yu, AP Photo Source: AP

As Palmer said, they do shoot their own people — in an estimated 4000 executions every year — and in the public square. I’m not talking about 1989 and Tiananmen Square.
I’m talking about the five protesters in Tibet shot dead just last week when they dared object to the arbitrary detention of a respected local elder; just a taste of how Beijing ­reacts to dissent.
So why has it become taboo to admit China’s glaring faults?
Well, we rely on them to buy our exports, to visit our tourist ­attractions, to fill our universities.
We need their cheap labour to make our $10 ­­T-shirts.
But the bigger, scarier truth is it suits Australia — and the rest of the Western world — for China to continue to oppress its people. Totalitarian regimes may represent evil in its most distilled form, but at least they are stable.
In the Middle East, we’ve seen in the past three years what happens when dictatorships fall.
We all loved the Arab Spring when it was Twitter and dancing in Tahrir Square — finally, a hint of freedom for the millions living under crazed dictatorships.
But the chaos that has followed is a bitter winter. In Iraq, Saddam Hussein’s depravity has been replaced by barbarians without faces, beheading men on their knees.
The truth, no matter how inconvenient, is that China is a totalitarian regime — a repressive place where ­arbitrary detention, forced relocation, land seizures, official corruption, police and military brutality, religious repression and gross interference with civil liberties go on every single day.
In Libya, the wicked 42-year reign of Muammar Gaddafi has been ­replaced by bearded Islamist maniacs dancing on top of burnt-out jumbo jets, declaring themselves the new government. Egypt today is even more of a global beacon for torture and oppression than it was under the dictator Hosni Mubarak.
As for Syria, the monstrous Islamic State controls everything east of Aleppo and is advancing on Damascus, with the likely encouragement of president Bashar al-Assad.
So China, controlled without dissent by the hard old men of the Politburo Standing Committee, is working in Australia’s most cynical interests.
No trade unions — that means our T-shirts are cheaper than ever. No ­regional independence movements — that means no possible disruptions to two-way trade. No rebel groups turning terrorist.
Australia’s leaders quietly hope China will take baby-steps towards something at least distantly related to democracy, just as long as nobody freaks them out by speaking the truth. Is this really the best we can do in our beautiful haven of free speech?
 
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Taken from: http://www.dailytelegraph.com.au/news/opinion/the-inconvenient-truth-is-weve-been-sold-a-pup-on-china-which-is-a-totalitarian-regime/story-fni0cwl5-1227041564788