Monday, 31 July 2017

The Feast of Saint Alphonsus Liguori

O God, who constantly raise up in your Church new examples of virtue, grant that we may follow so closely in the footsteps of the Bishop Saint Alphonsus in his zeal for souls as to attain the same rewards that are his in heaven. Through our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son, who lives and reigns with you in the unity of the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever.


The Litany of Saint Alphonsus Liguori

Lord have mercy on us.
Christ have mercy on us.
Lord have mercy on us. Christ, hear us.
Christ, graciously hear us.
God, the Father of Heaven,
have mercy on us.
God the Son, Redeemer of the world,
have mercy on us.
God the Holy Ghost,
have mercy on us.
Holy Trinity, One God,
have mercy on us.

Holy Mary, Virgin Immaculate,
pray for us.
St. Alphonsus, model of piety from tenderest youth,
pray for us.
St. Alphonsus, scourge of heresies,
pray for us.
St. Alphonsus, defender of the Catholic Faith,
pray for us.
St. Alphonsus, always occupied in evangelizing the poor,
pray for us.
St. Alphonsus, tender comforter of the afflicted,
pray for us.
St. Alphonsus, instructed in the Divine art of
converting sinners,
pray for us.
St. Alphonsus, enlightened guide in the path of perfection,
pray for us.
St. Alphonsus, who became all things to all men,
to gain all for Christ,
pray for us.
St. Alphonsus, new ornament of the Religious state,
pray for us.
St. Alphonsus, bold champion of ecclesiastical discipline,
pray for us.
St. Alphonsus, model of submission and devotion
to the Sovereign Pontiff,
pray for us.
St. Alphonsus, who didst watch unceasingly over the
flock committed to thee,
pray for us.
St. Alphonsus, full of solicitude for the common good
of the Church,
pray for us.
St. Alphonsus, glory of the Priesthood and
of the Episcopate,
pray for us.
St. Alphonsus, shining mirror of all virtues,
pray for us.
St. Alphonsus, full of tenderest love for the infant Jesus,
pray for us.
St. Alphonsus, inflamed with Divine love whilst offering
the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass,
pray for us.
St. Alphonsus, fervent adorer of Jesus Christ
in the Holy Eucharist,
pray for us.
St. Alphonsus, penetrated with lively compassion while
meditating on the sufferings of our Divine Savior,
pray for us.
St. Alphonsus, specially devoted to the
Blessed Virgin Mary,
pray for us.
St. Alphonsus, favored by apparitions
of the Mother of God,
pray for us.
St. Alphonsus, leading an angelic life,
pray for us.
St. Alphonsus, a true Patriarch in thy paternal
solicitude for the people of God,
pray for us.
St. Alphonsus, endowed with the gift of prophecy
and miracles,
pray for us.
St. Alphonsus, an Apostle by the extent and fruit of thy labors,
pray for us.
St. Alphonsus, a Martyr by thy austerities,
pray for us.
St. Alphonsus, a Confessor by thy writings full
of the Spirit of God,
pray for us.
St. Alphonsus, a Virgin by thy purity of soul and body,
pray for us.
St. Alphonsus, a model of Missionaries,
pray for us.
St. Alphonsus, founder of the Order of the Most
Holy Redeemer,
pray for us.
St. Alphonsus, our tender father and powerful protector,
pray for us.

Lamb of God, Who takest away the sins of the world,
Spare us, O Lord.
Lamb of God, Who takest away the sins of the world,
Graciously hear us, O Lord.
Lamb of God, Who takest away the sins of the world,
Have mercy on us.

V. Pray for us, St. Alphonsus,
R. That we may be made worthy of the promises of Christ.

Let us pray.

O God, Who by the Blessed Alphonsus Maria, Thy Confessor and Bishop, inflamed with zeal for souls, has enriched Thy Church with a new progeny: we beseech Thee, that taught by his saving counsels, and strengthened by his example, we may happily come to Thee. Through Christ our Lord. Amen.



Saint Alphonsus, pray for us, that we may truly appreciate the glories of Blessed Mary Ever Virgin.

Sunday, 30 July 2017

Indentity Theft

National Review: Donald Trump’s Transgender Military ‘Policy’ Is His Latest Misdirection

National Review: Donald Trump’s Transgender Military ‘Policy’ Is His Latest Misdirection


by Mona Charen



Back on planet Earth, I’d be inclined to assess the merits of the question. The Left’s default mode for any vexing public-policy matter is “discrimination” or “hate.” Complex questions are shoe-horned into a civil-rights box, and once so designated, they are beyond debate. Those opposed to “transgender” rights (even if that term is completely misplaced) get Bull Connor or “hater” status.

The question of gender identity is caught up with our confusion about masculinity and femininity, and about the role of biology in our lives. The Left’s approach – to declare trans people to be a persecuted minority rather than confused people in need of understanding and therapy – inhibits reasonable debate.

But so does Donald Trump’s cynical use of the question. After years of professing his attachment to LGBTQ concerns, offering that Caitlyn Jenner could use any bathroom he/she preferred in Trump Tower, telling crowds that he would be a “better friend” to LGBT people than Hillary Clinton, and even thanking Republican convention goers for cheering that gays should not be murdered, Trump now finds it useful to declare transgenders unwelcome in the U.S. military.

Never mind that even conservative Republican members of Congress had not asked for that much. They had opposed only forcing the military to pay for gender-reassignment surgery. And never mind that the military was in the midst of a thorough evaluation of its transgender policy. And never mind that the president failed to consult with or even to inform his military advisers before tweeting the new policy — which has provoked an extraordinary response from the Joint Chiefs of Staff, clarifying that there will be “no modifications to the current policy until the President’s direction has been received by the Secretary of Defense and the Secretary has issued implementation guidelines.”

A very nuanced perspective from a National Review writer.

The left's condemnation of the Trump ban ignores the questions of the safety and dignity of servicewomen posed by transgender people in the military, but the policy is somewhat clumsy and ill-considered.

Matt Walsh: We can’t save the public school system. We can only save our children from it.

Matt Walsh: We can’t save the public school system. We can only save our children from it.

"I have recently been slightly critical of the public school system. And by “recently” I mean relentlessly for the last decade. And by “slightly” I mean that I consider the public school system to be a cannibalistic mutation that brainwashes our children, devours their individuality and their creativity, and annihilates the moral values their parents instilled in them (if any were instilled at all)."


Sending your children to a secular state school will poison their minds for life. Our education system is training the next generation to hate God and love self.

Eastern Ukraine Situation Report 30th July

The Federalist: Why Trump Keeping Trans People From The Military Is A Good Decision

The Federalist: Why Trump Keeping Trans People From The Military Is A Good Decision

by Walt Heyer

"An endocrinologist in the early days of the sex change movement, Dr. Charles Ihlenfeld, administered cross-gender hormones to some 500 gender changers over six years. Based on his observations, Ihlenfeld sounded a warning in 1979 about hormone therapy and reassignment surgery: “There is too much unhappiness among people who have had the surgery,” he said. “Too many of them end as suicides.” Ihlenfeld retrained as a psychiatrist to be better equipped to treat the transgender population.

A 2011 long-term follow-up of transsexual persons undergoing sex reassignment surgery found that “Persons with transsexualism, after sex reassignment, have considerably higher risks for mortality, suicidal behavior.” The results of a survey in the Netherlands published in 2003 found that major mood disorders, dissociative disorders, and psychotic disorders are present in 79 percent of transgenders. A 2014 study found that more than 60 percent of this population suffer from co-existing mental disorders.

This population attempts suicide at a rate of 40 percent. Even after the full surgical change, they still attempt to end their lives. All of this indicates that the vast majority of gender dysphoric people are not mentally capable of the high-stress conditions of military life. Indeed, it suggests it’s cruel to put people like this into the pressure cooker that is war."

Saturday, 29 July 2017

Politico| Meet the neighbors: EU citizens in the UK

Politico| Meet the neighbors: EU citizens in the UK

'A survey of skilled workers in the U.K., conducted by law firm Baker McKenzie, found that more than half of EU nationals in the country were likely to leave the U.K. before Brexit negotiations had finished. Most of them feel more vulnerable to discrimination and less secure in their jobs than before the Brexit vote.

“The strength of feeling was surprising given the length of time after the referendum,” Baker McKenzie’s Stephen Ratcliffe said. “There are a lot of people in those sessions [during which the data was collected] who were really upset, and they said ‘Well, if you don’t want me here, I’m going.’”

And it’s not just workers leaving that changed after the Brexit vote — workers are now less likely to even come to the U.K. as well.

In particular, immigration from the EU8 declined drastically after the Brexit referendum in June 2016. This group makes up large swaths of the agriculture and manufacturing sectors (7 and 8 percent respectively).

Immigration was cited as one of the main reasons the U.K. voted for Brexit. EU citizens have already started to take the hint.'

M119A3 Howitzer

Friday, 28 July 2017

The Feast of Saint Alphonsa



O God, who didst endue thy holy Virgin Saint Alphonsa with grace to witness a good confession: Grant that we, after her example, may be found ready when the Bridegroom cometh, and enter with him to the marriage feast; through the same thy Son Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.


Saint Alphonsa, pray for us, for the Syro-Malabar Catholic Church, for all Franciscans and for India.

Wednesday, 26 July 2017

The Feast of Saint Clement of Ohrid

O God, the light of the faithful, and shepherd of souls, who didst set blessed Saint Clement to be a Bishop in the Orthodox Church, that he might feed thy sheep by his word and guide them by his example: Grant us, we pray thee, to keep the faith which he taught, and to follow in his footsteps; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.


Saint Clement of Ohrid, pray for us and for Bulgaria and Macedonia.

The Feast of Saint Anne



O Lord, God of our Fathers, who bestowed on Saints Joachim and Anne this grace, that of them should be born the Mother of your incarnate Son, grant, through the prayers of both, that we may attain the salvation you have promised to your people. Through our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son, who lives and reigns with you in the unity of the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever.

Good St. Anne, you were especially favored by God to be the mother of the most holy Virgin Mary, the Mother of our Savior. By your power with your most pure daughter and with her divine Son, kindly obtain for us the grace and the favor we now seek. Please secure for us also forgiveness of our past sins, the strength to perform faithfully our daily duties and the help we need to persevere in the love of Jesus and Mary. Amen.


Litany of Saint Anne
For private use only.

Lord have mercy on us.
Christ have mercy on us.
Lord have mercy on us. Christ, hear us.
Christ, graciously hear us.
God, the Father of Heaven,
have mercy on us.
God the Son, Redeemer of the world,
have mercy on us.
God the Holy Ghost,
have mercy on us.
Holy Trinity, One God,
have mercy on us.
Holy Mary, Queen of Angels and Saints
Pray for us.
St. Anne, instrument of the Holy Ghost,
Pray for us.
St. Anne, faithful spouse of St. Joachim,
Pray for us.
St. Anne, mirror of the married,
Pray for us.
St. Anne, example of widows,
Pray for us.
St. Anne, miracle of patience,
Pray for us.
St. Anne, mother of confidence,
Pray for us.
St. Anne, mother of constancy,
Pray for us.
St. Anne, mother of prayer,
Pray for us.
St. Anne, mother of blessing,
Pray for us.
St. Anne, vessel of sanctity,
Pray for us.
St. Anne, merciful mother,
Pray for us.
St. Anne, comfortress of the afflicted,
Pray for us.
St. Anne, help of the poor,
Pray for us.
St. Anne, protectress of virgins,
Pray for us.
St. Anne, support of the oppressed,
Pray for us.
St. Anne, refuge of thy clients,
Pray for us.
We sinners,
We beseech thee, hear us.
Through thy love for Jesus and Mary,
We beseech thee, hear us.
Through thy virtues and merits,
We beseech thee, hear us.
Through thy goodness and mercy,
We beseech thee, hear us.
Through thy compassion and charity,
We beseech thee, hear us.
Through the graces bestowed on thee by God,
We beseech thee, hear us.
Through the joys thou didst experience with Jesus and Mary,
We beseech thee, hear us.
Through the happiness thou dost enjoy for all eternity,
We beseech thee, hear us.
Through the honor given thee by the Saints in Heaven,
We beseech thee, hear us.


Lamb of God, Who takest away the sins of the world,
Spare us, O Lord.
Lamb of God, Who takest away the sins of the world,
Graciously hear us, O Lord.
Lamb of God, Who takest away the sins of the world,
Have mercy on us.

V. Pray for us, St. Anne,
R. That we may be made worthy of the promises of Christ.

Let us pray.

O God, Who didst vouchsafe to endow blessed Anne with grace so that she might be worthy to become the mother of her who brought forth Thine only-begotten Son, mercifully grant that we who devoutly venerate her memory may also be helped by her powerful intercession. Through Christ our Lord. Amen.



Saint Anne, pray for us, and for all mothers.

Leaseholds

Monday, 24 July 2017

The Feast of Saint James the Great




GRANT, O merciful God, that as thine holy Apostle Saint James, leaving his father and all that he had, without delay was obedient unto the calling of thy Son Jesus Christ, and followed him; so we, forsaking all worldly and carnal affections, may be evermore ready to follow thy holy commandments; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

St. James, pray for us and for Spain.

Saturday, 22 July 2017

Noble Partner 2017

The Feast of Saint Mary Magdalene



O God, whose Only Begotten Son entrusted Mary Magdalene before all others with announcing the great joy of the Resurrection, grant, we pray, that through her intercession and example we may proclaim the living Christ and come to see him reigning in your glory. Who lives and reigns with you in the unity of the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever.



The Litany of Saint Mary Magdalene

Lord, have mercy on us,
Christ, have mercy on us.
Lord, have mercy on us. Christ, hear us,
Christ, graciously hear us.

Holy Mary, Mother of God,
Pray for us.
St. Mary Magdalen,
Pray for us.
Sister of Martha and Lazarus, etc.
Thou who didst enter the Pharisee's house to anoint the feet of Jesus,
Who didst wash His feet with thy tears,
Who didst dry them with thy hair,
Who didst cover them with kisses,
Who wast vindicated by Jesus before the proud Pharisee,
Who from Jesus received the pardon of thy sins,
Who before darkness wast restored to light,
Mirror of penance,
Disciple of Our Lord,
Wounded with the love of Christ,
Most dear to the Heart of Jesus,
Constant woman,
Last at the Cross of Jesus, first at His tomb,
Thou who wast the first to see Jesus risen,
Whose forehead was sanctified by the touch of thy risen Master,
Apostle of apostles,
Who didst choose the "better part,"
Who lived for many years in solitude being miraculously fed,
Who wast visited by Angels seven times a day,
Sweet advocate of sinners,
Spouse of the King of Glory,

V. Saint Mary Magdalen, earnestly intercede for us with thy Divine Master,
R. That we may share thy happiness in Heaven.

Let Us Pray.

May the glorious merits of blessed Mary Magdalen, we beseech Thee, O Lord,
make our offerings acceptable to Thee, for Thine only-begotten Son vouchsafed
graciously to accept the humble service she rendered. We ask this through Him
Who liveth and reigneth with Thee and the Holy Ghost, God forever and ever. R. Amen.

May the prayers of blessed Mary Magdalen help us, O Lord, for it was in answer to them
that Thou didst call her brother Lazarus, four days after death, back from the grave to life,
Who livest and reignest with the Father and the Holy Ghost, Unity in Trinity,
world without end. R. Amen.


Saint Mary Magdalene, pray for us, that we may be protected from demonic oppression.

Sunday, 16 July 2017

Project Syndicate: The Case for an EU-Ukraine Customs Union

Project Syndicate: The Case for an EU-Ukraine Customs Union


by Anders Fogh Rasmussen


"In Kyiv, the EU will stress the need to continue reforms and implement the EU’s technical standards. But if we want to keep Ukraine moving forward, we cannot just engage in mutual celebration of the road already traveled. Europe’s most powerful lever in promoting stable, viable, and successful democracies has always been its use of conditionality, linking reforms to clear and tangible benefits. We must continue to place new milestones along the road to show that we are committed to Ukraine’s success and serious about rewarding reforms.

The prospect of a customs union is the strongest incentive to implement the agreed free-trade deal and continue Ukraine’s long-term economic integration with Europe. This is not a short-term project; it will take over a decade before Ukraine is ready. However, once fulfilled, Ukrainian businesses would be able to join European manufacturing supply chains, and the government would be able to pursue a much-needed diversified industrial strategy to capitalize on its geographical proximity to the world’s biggest market. Rather than being an addendum to Europe’s economy, Ukraine would become intertwined with it."

The Feast of Our Lady of Mount Carmel




In communion with Our Lady of Mount Carmel, help us, dear Lord, to arrive at last at the mountain which is Christ, who lives and reigns with you in the unity of the Holy Spirit, God, forever.


Novena to Our Lady of Mount Carmel (very powerful)

O most beautiful flower of Mount Carmel, fruitful vine, splendor of Heaven, blessed Mother of the Son of God, Immaculate Virgin, assist me in this my necessity. Oh, Star of the Sea, help me and show me herein that you are my Mother.

O Holy Mary, Mother of God, Queen of Heaven and Earth, I humbly beseech you from the bottom of my heart to succor me in this necessity; there are none that can withstand your power. O show me herein that you are my Mother.

Our Lady, queen and beauty of Carmel, pray for me and obtain my requests.

Sweet Mother, I place this cause into your hands.


Litany of Our Lady of Mount Carmel

Lord, have mercy.
Christ, have mercy.
Lord, have mercy. Christ, hear us.
Christ, graciously hear us.
God, the Father of Heaven,
have mercy on us.
God the Son, Redeemer of the World,
have mercy on us.
God the Holy Spirit,
have mercy on us.
Holy Trinity, One God,
have mercy on us.

Holy Mary,
pray for us.

BEFORE EACH OF THE FOLLOWING SALUTATIONS SAY:
"Our Lady of Mount Carmel,"
AND AFTERWARDS: "Pray for us Sinners."

Queen of Heaven,
Victorious over Satan,
Most Obedient Daughter,
Most Pure Virgin,
Devoted Spouse,
Mother Most Tender,
Model of Perfect Virtue,
Sure Anchor of Hope,
Refuge in Sorrow,
Dispensatrix of the Gifts of God,
Bastion Against Our Enemies,
Our Aid in Danger,
The Way Leading to Jesus,
Our Light in Darkness,
Our Consolation at the Hour of Death,
Advocate of the Most Abandoned Sinners,
For the Hardened in Vice,
For Those who Offend Thy Divine Son,
For Those Who Neglect to Pray,
For Those Who are in Agony,
For Those Who Defer Their Conversion,
For Those Suffering in Purgatory,
For Those Who Do Not Know Thee.

Let Us Pray.

Our Lady of Mount Carmel, glorious Queen of Angels, channel of God's tenderest mercy to man, refuge and advocate of sinners, with confidence I prostrate myself before thee, beseeching thee to obtain for me [Mention request silently]. In return I solemnly promise to have recourse to thee in all my trials, sufferings and temptations, and I shall do all in my power to induce others to love and reverence thee and to invoke thee in all their needs. I thank thee for the numberless blessings which I have received from thy mercy and powerful intercession. Continue to be my shield in danger, my guide in life, and my consolation at the hour of death. Amen.



Litany of Our Lady of Mount Carmel for the Conversion of Sinners

Lord, have mercy on us.
Christ, have mercy on us.
Lord, have mercy on us. Christ, hear us.
Christ, graciously hear us.
God the Father of Heaven,
Have mercy on us.
God the Son, Redeemer of the world,
Have mercy on us.
God the Holy Ghost,
Have mercy on us.
Holy Trinity, One God,
Have mercy on us.

Holy Mary,
pray for us sinners.
Our Lady of Mount Carmel, Queen of Heaven,
pray for us sinners.
Our Lady of Mount Carmel, vanquisher of Satan, etc.
Our Lady of Mount Carmel, most dutiful Daughter,
Our Lady of Mount Carmel, most pure Virgin,
Our Lady of Mount Carmel, most devoted Spouse,
Our Lady of Mount Carmel, most tender Mother,
Our Lady of Mount Carmel, perfect model of virtue,
Our Lady of Mount Carmel, sure anchor of hope,
Our Lady of Mount Carmel, refuge in affliction,
Our Lady of Mount Carmel, dispenser of God's gifts,
Our Lady of Mount Carmel, tower of strength against our foes,
Our Lady of Mount Carmel, our aid in danger,
Our Lady of Mount Carmel, road leading to Jesus,
Our Lady of Mount Carmel, our light in darkness,
Our Lady of Mount Carmel, our consolation at the hour of death,
Our Lady of Mount Carmel, advocate of the most abandoned sinners,

For those hardened in vice,
With confidence we come to thee,
O Lady of Mount Carmel.
For those who grieve thy Son,
With confidence we come to thee,
O Lady of Mount Carmel.
For those who neglect to pray, etc.
For those who are in their agony,
For those who delay their conversion,
For those suffering in Purgatory,
For those who know thee not,

Lamb of God, Who takest away the sins of the world,
Spare us, O Lord.
Lamb of God, Who takest away the sins of the world,
Graciously hear us, O Lord.
Lamb of God, Who takest away the sins of the world,
Have mercy on us.

V. Our Lady of Mount Carmel, Hope of the Despairing,
R. Intercede for us with thy Divine Son.

Let Us Pray.

Our Lady of Mount Carmel, glorious Queen of Angels, channel of God's tenderest mercy to man, refuge and advocate of sinners, with confidence I prostrate myself before thee, beseeching thee to obtain for me [Mention request silently]. In return I solemnly promise to have recourse to thee in all my trials, sufferings and temptations, and I shall do all in my power to induce others to love and reverence thee and to invoke thee in all their needs. I thank thee for the numberless blessings which I have received from thy mercy and powerful intercession. Continue to be my shield in danger, my guide in life, and my consolation at the hour of death. Amen.



Our Lady of Mount Carmel, pray for us, for the souls in purgatory and for all Carmelites

Saturday, 15 July 2017

National Review:The Benefit of the Doubt Is Gone

National Review:The Benefit of the Doubt Is Gone

by Jonah Goldberg


"It may be true that nothing came of the meeting. Heck, I think it probably is true (more on that in a moment). Junior seems plausible when he says as much. But every single person who was in that room has a very strong incentive to say nothing nefarious happened in the room. Well, when the Soprano crew is jointing a corpse in the backroom of Satriale’s, everyone there has a vested interest in sticking to the story that they were just playing cards.

Who in that room do you think is above lying about what transpired there? Paul Manafort? Forget his deep Russian connections. The guy was a lobbyist for Mobutu Seske Seko. When he worked for the Pakistani intelligence service, he pretended to be a CNN reporter for a propaganda documentary he was making for them. The only way you could say “that man’s word is oak” is if Jell-O came out with a new oak-flavored pudding. (“Now with real bark!”) Jared? The guy who initially “forgot” that meeting happened at all?

Don Jr.? We already know he’s capable of lying about the meeting because he’s already lied about the meeting. Oh, maybe you’re taking the word of the sketchy Russian lawyer. That’s a great idea. It’s also kind of hilarious. Many of the people pushing back on this story are doing so by questioning Natalia Veselnitskaya’s credibility. But we should take her word that nothing happened? Cults of personality are a helluva drug."


The National Review seems to be realizing that defending Trump is a dead end.

Evening Standard| Orwell revisited: the Great Repeal Bill

Evening Standard| Orwell revisited: the Great Repeal Bill

Editorial


"First, the name is a deliberate echo of the Great Reform Act of 1832, that milestone on Britain’s journey to being a modern democracy. The implication is that we are engaged in a similar democratic act — “taking back control” of our affairs by “restoring” parliamentary sovereignty. Yet the very idea that Parliament can vote to restore its sovereignty exposes the falsity behind the argument. Our Parliament chose to join the EU, and now it may choose to leave it. Proof that Parliament has always been sovereign.

Second, a “Great Repeal Bill” suggests lots of things are being repealed. Far from it. This is the single greatest act of regulation in UK history. Thousands of EU rules are being imported wholesale into our law. Not one is being watered down, and none of the rules are being abolished.

Only a tiny minority of Brexit voters thought that by leaving the EU they were voting for freer markets, less red tape and lower taxes. Again they are going to have their delusions exposed. Sunderland and Stoke did not vote to turn Britain into Singapore. There is no Commons majority to deregulate anything. Already lobbying has started for more intervention once the constraints of EU membership are removed. The export of livestock will be banned by regulation. Taxpayer bungs to struggling businesses are to be allowed. More complexity in our tax system, like lots of VAT rates, is going to be encouraged."

First Comes Love, by Scott Hahn




In this book, Catholic apologist Scott Hahn demonstrates how relationships within the family are analogous to God's Trinitarian love. God is love because He is a Trinity, a community of persons. Before the creation of the world, the Father eternally loved the Son, therefore our God is not the lonely solitary god of Islam or the Jehovah's Witnesses. This is a very edifying and inspiring book with some thoughtful insights on both theology and family life.

I particular like the appendix which deals with motherhood and divine aspects of the feminine. He points out the feminine aspects of the Holy Spirit's work and how this is manifested in the person of the Blessed Mother of God. He brings up the use of divine feminine imagery in the Syrian Christian tradition and the place of Sopiology and the Wisdom tradition. Scott Hahn received some very silly criticisms for this appendix, with some accusing him of teaching that Jesus had 'two mummies,' Mary and the Holy Spirit and thus supporting lesbianism. Scott Hahn responded to those criticisms by insisting that he did not advocate calling God 'she.'

One point we might quibble in this otherwise good book is Hahn's speculation over the Genesis account fo the Fall. He suggests that Adam's failure was in being terrified by the Serpent, which he suggests was a monstrous creature. He thinks that Adam failed to protect Eve from the serpent out of fear. While I agree with him (contra Paradise Lost and other artistic depictions) that Adam and Eve were together at the Fall, I think his speculation goes beyond the Biblical text.

The Feast of Saint Bonaventure

Grant, we pray, almighty God, that, just as we celebrate the heavenly birthday of the Bishop Saint Bonaventure, we may benefit from his great learning and constantly imitate the ardor of his charity. Through our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son, who lives and reigns with you in the unity of the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever.


Saint Bonaventure, pray for us, for all Franciscans and for theologians.

Thursday, 13 July 2017

The Feast of Saint Henry



O God, whose abundant grace prepared Saint Henry to be raised by you in a wonderful way from the cares of earthly rule to heavenly realms, grant, we pray, through his intercession, that amid the uncertainties of this world we may hasten towards you with minds made pure. Through our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son, who lives and reigns with you in the unity of the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever.


Saint Henry, pray for us, for all kings and queens and for all Benedictine Oblates

Tuesday, 11 July 2017

Security Patrol in Iraq

St. Matrona House of Prayer: On head covering

St. Matrona House of Prayer: On head covering

"Ladies… head covering is a big deal. Do not allow anyone to talk you out of it or try to embarrass you because you practice this important, outward expression of your authority. Once, when I was still a Protestant groping in the dark and trying to figure out head covering, I wore my cover to church. The pastor of that church did not pull me aside to discuss privately why I covered. Instead, he stood right in front of me and preached a sermon against the practice of covering. Subtle. I hold no grudge against him for it. What he did only served to help me find a place where the practice of head covering would be more readily accepted and encouraged. Hello Orthodox Christianity.

Head covering is part of the armor that I put on when I pray and worship. I would feel, ‘out of uniform’ and unprotected if I were to enter temple without it or pray uncovered. I have had many strange, and wonderful, experiences through head covering. Each one serving to solidify my understanding of the importance of covering."

Monday, 10 July 2017

The Feast of Saint Olga



Giving your mind the wings of divine understanding,
you soared above visible creation seeking God the Creator of all.
When you had found Him, you received rebirth through baptism.
As one who enjoys the Tree of Life,
You remain eternally incorrupt, ever-glorious Olga.

Today let us praise God the Benefactor of all,
Who glorified divinely-wise Olga,
That through her prayers, He may grant our souls remission of sins.


Saint Olga, pray for us, for Ukraine and for all Christian grandmothers.

The Feast of Saint Benedict



O God, who made the Abbot Saint Benedict an outstanding master in the school of divine service, grant, we pray, that, putting nothing before love of you, we may hasten with a loving heart in the way of your commands. Through our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son, who lives and reigns with you in the unity of the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever.



O exalted Father St. Benedict, guide and patriarch of the monastic life, thou art the hope and consolation of all who cry to thee from their inmost heart. To thy holy patronage I humbly recommend myself. To thee do I pray, to thee do I cry, O benign Father, O sweetest Master! With the utmost fervor of my heart, and with the vehement desires of my soul, I supplicate thee: graciously intercede with God for me, a poor sinner, that He may mercifully grant the forgiveness of my sins and perseverance in good. O loving Father, I most ardently beseech thee, never permit me to be separated from God, but pray that I may attain to the communion of saints, to the happy vision of my Lord, that with thee and the numerous choirs of they spiritual sons and daughters, I may rejoice forever and ever. This grant me, O Lord Jesus Christ, who livest and reignest with the Father and the Holy Ghost, one God, forever and ever. Amen.



The Litany of Saint Benedict

Lord, have mercy on us,
Christ, have mercy on us.
God the Father of Heaven,
Have mercy on us.
God the Son, Redeemer of the world,
Have mercy on us.
God, the Holy Spirit,
Have mercy on us.
Holy Trinity, One God,
Have mercy on us.

Holy Mary,
Pray for us.
Holy Mary, Mother of God,
Pray for us.
Holy Virgin of virgins, etc.
Holy Father, Saint Benedict,
Father most reverend,
Father most renowned,
Father most compassionate,
Man of great fortitude,
Man of venerable life,
Man of the most holy conversation,
True servant of God,
Light of devotion,
Light of prayer,
Light of contemplation,
Star of the world,
Best master of an austere life,
Leader of the holy warfare,
Leader and chief of monks,
Master of those who die to the world,
Protector of those who cry to thee,
Wonderful worker of miracles,
Revealer of the secrets of the human heart,
Master of spiritual discipline,
Companion of the patriarchs,
Equal of the prophets,
Follower of the Apostles,
Teacher of Martyrs,
Father of many pontiffs,
Gem of abbots,
Glory of Confessors,
Imitator of anchorites,
Associate of virgins,
Colleague of all the Saints,
Lamb of God, Who takest away the sins of the world,
Spare us, O Lord.
Lamb of God, Who takest away the sins of the world,
Graciously hear us, O Lord.
Lamb of God, Who takes away the sins of the world,
Have mercy on us.

V. Intercede for us, O holy father Saint Benedict,
R. That we may be made worthy of the promises of Christ.

Let Us Pray.

O God, Who hast called us from the vanity of the world, and Who dost incite us to the reward of a heavenly vocation under the guidance of our holy patriarch and founder, Saint Benedict, inspire and purify our hearts and pour forth on us Thy grace, whereby we may persevere in Thee. Through Jesus Christ, Our Lord. R. Amen.


Saint Benedict, pray for us, for Europe and for all monks and nuns.

Strong Support for Ukraine

Sunday, 9 July 2017

The Telegraph: Public viewing soldiers as victims risks damaging Army, says Chief of the General Staff

The Telegraph: Public viewing soldiers as victims risks damaging Army, says Chief of the General Staff

“I think that we have enjoyed massive and almost overwhelming public support off the back of what we did in Iraq and Afghanistan.

“I think there’s a risk that that public support is very much based on sympathy and not necessarily on empathy and I think if we wish to sustain our numbers and indeed the sort of attitude that you would want your army to have, then I think it’s important that the cursor swings more towards empathy than sympathy. So that people understand about what an army does and why you need an army and therefore what it’s final task might be.”

The lack of understanding and the belief that soldiers are victims could hit recruitment in an Army which is already 4,000 soldiers below its target strength of 82,000.

I have often felt uncomfortable with the way campaigns like Help for Heroes have offered this somewhat sentimentalized, victimized view of our troops.

Matt Walsh: God’s Word hasn’t become less true just because it has become less popular

Matt Walsh: God’s Word hasn’t become less true just because it has become less popular

"Imagine two types of Christians: One accepts what Christ has said about sexual morality, but stumbles constantly and finds himself always having to return to God in prayerful repentance, asking for the strength and grace to follow His law more closely. The other has decided that Christ didn’t mean what He said, or that He didn’t really say it, or that, you know, whatever, it’s fine, and so he carries on looking at pornography, having premarital sex, and all the rest of it, and never repents or even tries to change because he has told himself — and perhaps his church has taught him — that obedience to Christ is a fundamentally unnecessary aspect of the Christian life. Even if these two types of Christians behave very similarly, only one is actually Christian. The one who completely rejects the notion that Christ has any authority over his life is not even in the ballpark of Christianity. Indeed, he’s less Christian than an atheist. And the churches that preach this sort of Gospel are not preaching the Gospel at all."

Saturday, 8 July 2017

Friday, 7 July 2017

Evening Standard: EU powers are the real leaders among the G20

Evening Standard: EU powers are the real leaders among the G20

editorial

"The Eurocrats cannot believe their luck. After a depressing year since our referendum spent talking about how to stop the EU falling apart, they are now talking about how to make it much stronger. In the salons of Paris, Berlin and Brussels they hardly mention Brexit these days — it’s an inconvenient problem from the past when populism peaked. The conversation is now about the new European opportunity.

Where is Britain in all of this? Sidelined. How notable it has been that none of the big players at the G20, such as the Chinese or Indians, or even Mr Trump, wanted to stop off here on their way to Hamburg. They want to be where the global leadership is: on the continent of Europe, not on the island trying to leave it."

Eastern Ukraine Situation Report 7th July

Independent: Brexit will ‘undoubtedly’ damage Britain’s influence on world stage, says William Hague

Independent: Brexit will ‘undoubtedly’ damage Britain’s influence on world stage, says William Hague

Brexit will “undoubtedly” damage Britain’s capacity to work with other EU countries on issues relating to foreign affairs and its ability to exert influence in the world, according to the former Conservative Foreign Secretary William Hague.

Speaking to the House of Lord’s EU external affairs sub-committee, Lord Hague, who is also a former Tory leader, added it could even be possible Britain would be in a position of advocating EU membership for countries in the Balkans while simultaneously negotiating to leave the bloc.

But when asked by peers how Brexit will affect the UK’s relationship with the 27 other EU countries, he replied: “Brexit will be damaging to our ability to work with other EU countries, obviously on foreign affairs and influence their outlook overall.

New Atlanticist: NATO Enhances its Eastern Front

New Atlanticist: NATO Enhances its Eastern Front

The Baltic States and Poland have long wanted an enduring NATO presence on their territories. Russia’s invasion and annexation of Crimea in 2014 convinced their allies they need it. With plans approved at the Warsaw Summit in 2016, now the four countries each have a battle group of approximately 1,000 troops stationed on their territory. “We don’t see any imminent threat against any NATO ally,” NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg said, “but we have to be vigilant.”

Stoltenberg traveled to Latvia and Lithuania in June during the Saber Strike 2017 military exercises, which involved some 11,000 troops from twenty countries, to mark the battle groups becoming fully operational and to remind everyone why they exist.

“What we saw in Crimea and Ukraine was that there was a lack of a strong military presence that made it possible for Russia to act in the way they did, with hybrid warfare, with little green men in Crimea,” Stoltenberg told me. “[Lithuania] is a very different country, but we need an increased NATO presence with multinational forces, improving our situational awareness to be able to send a very clear message that any attack, any threat against any NATO ally will trigger a response from the whole Alliance.”

Thursday, 6 July 2017

Trump on US Soldiers in Poland

The American who stood with Poland

BBC News: Trump condemns Russian activities in Ukraine

BBC News: Trump condemns Russian activities in Ukraine

"As the Polish experience reminds us, the defence of the West ultimately rests not only on means but also on the will of its people to prevail," Mr Trump said.

"The fundamental question of our time is whether the West has the will to survive."

He called on Russia to "cease its destabilising activities in Ukraine and elsewhere and its support for hostile regimes including Syria and Iran".

Instead, he said, Russia should "join the community of responsible nations in our fight against common enemies and in defence of civilisation itself".

The Feast of Saint Maria Goretti



O God, author of innocence and lover of chastity, who bestowed the grace of martyrdom on your handmaid, the Virgin Saint Maria Goretti, in her youth, grant, we pray, through her intercession, that, as you gave her a crown for her steadfastness, so we, too, may be firm in obeying your commandments. Through our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son, who lives and reigns with you in the unity of the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever.



Litany of Saint Maria

Lord have mercy on us, Christ have mercy on us
Lord have mercy on us, Christ hear us Christ graciously hear us
God the Father of Heaven, have mercy on us
God the Son, Redeemer of the World, have mercy on us
God the Holy Spirit, have mercy on us
Holy Trinity, One God, have mercy on us
Holy Mary, pray for us
Holy Mary, Queen of Virgins, pray for us
Holy Mary, Queen of martyrs, pray for us
Saint Maria Goretti, etc.
St. Maria, Martyr of Purity,
St. Maria, Lily of the Marshes,
St. Maria, pure of heart,
St. Maria, child of Mary,
St. Maria, whose shield was the Most Holy Rosary,
St. Maria, most obedient,
St. Maria, most faithful,
St. Maria, most zealous observer of modesty,
St. Maria, mirror of patience,
St. Maria, lover of Holy Poverty,
St. Maria, ever burning for the Eucharistic Christ,
St. Maria, resplendent with humility,
St. Maria, most holy daughter,
St. Maria, most saintly sister,
St. Maria model for all youth,
St. Maria, patron of girls,
St. Maria, patron of Saint Maria's Messenger,
St. Maria, guardian of virgins,
St. Maria, holy and innocent virgin,
St. Maria, exclaiming "It is a sin! God does not want it!",
St. Maria, exclaiming "May God forgive him as I have already forgiven him!",
St. Maria, whose motto was, "I would rather die than commit a mortal sin.",
Saint Maria Goretti, make us pure
Through your most brutal death, make us pure
Through your life of poverty, make us pure
Through the tears and anguish of domestic life, etc.
Through the love you bore Jesus in the Most Blessed Sacrament,
Through the care and zeal with which you honored Mary,
Through your prompt forgiveness of your murderer,
Through the tenderness of your heart toward your siblings,
Through the obedience and fidelity you showed your mother,
Through the unwavering patience you gave to your neighbors,
Through the prayers and honor you gave your father even after death,
Through the love and protection you show us here on earth,
Lamb of God who takes away the sins of the world, Spare us O Lord
Lamb of God who takes away the sins of the world, Graciously hear us, O Lord
Lamb of God who takes away the sins of the world, Have mercy on us
Pray for us O Holy Saint Maria Goretti, That we may be made worthy of the promises of Christ

Let Us Pray
O God, who has exalted blessed Maria, thy virgin, in the glory of Thy Saints, grant that, as we rejoice in her commemoration, so may we profit by the example of her virtues; especially those of purity and chastity. Through Christ Our Lord. R. Amen.



Saint Maria Goretti, pray for us, for the victims of sexual violence and for all young people.

Father Ed's Blog: On a married priesthood

Father Ed's Blog: On a married priesthood


"Marriage does not hamper the dedication of surgeons, soldiers and those in the emergency services so why do we assume it hampers the dedication of clergy? The reality is more complex and, in truth, there are good/bad (effective/useless) priests regardless of marital status. A singleton might well have more time on his hands but this doesn’t mean it is spent effectively. Indeed the married man might be in the parish more often, due to family ties, than the singleton jetting off at every opportunity to spend time with friends.

***

Why then am I torn? Because on the one hand I believe a fulfilled, chaste and celibate priesthood serves as a radical example of holiness to a sex obsesses culture; and a precious charism would be lost if celibate priesthood was dispensed with.

Yet I also know my own ministry has not been hampered by my marital status, quite the reverse, and I believe the church might be missing out on some potential when it closes the door altogether to a married priesthood. Might the answer be to look to the wisdom of the East?

For the Orthodox accept both paths- celibate and married. The celibates are most cherished and sent to high office- only the celibate become bishop. Meanwhile the marrieds go into the community to serve families there. A sensible compromise to my mind. How very Anglican of me! You can take the boy out of the C of E…."

Tuesday, 4 July 2017

Portsmouth Naval Base

Keynesian Liberal: Corbyn, Labour and the Single Market

Keynesian Liberal: Corbyn, Labour and the Single Market


"The curious thing is that both Corbyn and the Labour hierarchy, including their responsible shadow minister , Sir Kier Starmer, have consistently argued that we should make the economy and jobs in the UK a priority in the Brexit negotiations, and clearly full access to the single market would be a considerable help.

Some Labour big-wigs could be anxious that some of their support could be disgruntled if access to the market involved a bit of a trade-off on immigration, but Corbyn himself has been refreshingly and , in my view admirably, relaxed on immigration, stressing the enormous benefits that past immigrants have brought to our economy, culture and society, and being reluctant to follow the Tories in their quest for draconian and unsustainable reductions.

It may be that the Labour establishment are timid about being seen to go against the so-called "will of the people" as expressed by by a narrow majority in a seriously flawed referendum. But even senior Brexiteer Boris Johnson assured us during the referendum campaign that voting to leave the EU did not imply leaving the single market.


So Labour don't have that excuse.

Yet Labour MPs were officially instructed to abstain on the Umunna amendment. 49 of them defied the whip and voted for it, along with all our gallant band of Liberal Democrat, the one Green and I think most if not all of the SNP and Plaid Cymru. But not the doughty Mrs Brabin.

I am saddened but not surprised by Mrs Brabin's lack of fight, but genuinely puzzled by Labour's stance. It is becoming increasingly clear that public opinion is moving against a hard Brexit. Here was a golden opportunity to run the government close if not actually defeat them and Labour just didn't take it."


While Labour lack the combative approach to the EU that affects some of the Tories, their stance on Brexit is a mess.