RSS Feed

First Things On Board Second, but Now Seeing What’s Necessary to Confront the Secular World on True Marriage

Posted on

On 11/18/14, First Things editor R.R. Reno published “A Time to Rend,” which claims in its very first statement that “It’s time to make a clear distinction between the government-enforced legal regime of marriage and the biblical covenant of marriage.” This is indeed a wise admonition on the part of R.R. Reno et al. because such is necessary to properly deploy spiritual and intellectual forces for the upcoming battles against the secular hordes. Along similar lines to what is proposed in “A Time to Rend,” I wrote two articles in May 2012 (slightly revised and re-published over the past few years) that I am now combining into one article below as a “call to spiritual arms” that presents additional proposals to what is set forth in “A Time to Rend.”

The War is On!

_______________________________________________

Saving and Promoting True Marriage

It seems inevitable that so-called gay (Always keep in mind that the term GAY is also an acronym – G.A.Y. – promoted by homosexuals to stand for Good As You in the sense that homosexual morality is just as good as heterosexual morality.), or same-sex marriage will become legally recognized by more and more regions throughout the world as secular forces continue to promote and make gains in this area. While the entire concept of same-sex marriage is absurd and offensive on its face, and a desire to prevent greater recognition of the perversion from occurring is most admirable and rightly motivated, some good can still come out of a revised secular definition of marriage if it carries the day as seems likely.

For starters, the Catholic Church and other Christian Churches can emphasize and publicize that the lone word marriage will no longer be adequate from a church perspective, and so it will necessarily be referred to as Sacramental Marriage, with the idea that Sacramental is to be emphasized and always included when speaking about marriage from X date forward. This will help to maintain the appropriate distinction between marriage proper as a sacred union of a man and a woman and any secular or perverse definition/understanding of marriage the secular world can come up with. For other marriages recognized by the Church as legitimate but not sacramental, these can be referred to as Recognized Natural Marriages (or some other appropriate term).

Let the homosexuals and their fellow travelers cry and whine about being treated “unfairly” once again by the renewed emphasis on Sacramental or Recognized Natural Marriage being essentially different than their twisted understanding of marriage. If they and their fellow travelers are hell-bent on changing terms to suit their perverse behavior, and too much of the world accepts such satanic lunacy, then people of faith and good will can certainly emphasize appropriate terms to reflect their faith, and maintain important distinctions that honor the Lord, His Divine Law, and the Natural Law.

Next, the Catholic Church could use the new emphasis to re-educate the faithful on what marriage is truly all about, focusing on the procreative, unitive, and parenting aspects of marriage at all times. By doing this, it will expose the weakness and stupidity of the secular world’s recognition of “same-sex marriage.” As an added bonus, many people who continue to see marriage as nothing more than a simple partnership will be compelled to understand the distinction between any kind of secular marriage and Sacramental Marriage, and why Sacramental Marriages and Recognized Natural Marriages are holy institutions while the secular perversion is anything but.

Now, for anyone who thinks that churches adopting such a change in descriptive emphasis is a form of caving in to the secular and homosexual world, nothing could be further from the truth. Instead of arguing about the proper meaning of an appropriated term, people of faith go on the offensive for a change by emphasizing what true marriage is all about, and that can only be a Sacramental or Recognized Natural Marriage.

Is such a renewed emphasis on True Marriage likely to take place in the churches? Probably not, at least not in the foreseeable future, but even without church leadership implementing such an approach, people of faith can adopt and emphasize the more precise and powerful terminology in all conversations, writings, and so on to fight against the secular darkness that seeks to appropriate many terms in order to distort reality.

As the wise Monsignor William Smith once taught, “all social engineering is preceded by verbal engineering.” Alas, the term “marriage” appears to already be a casualty in our ongoing war against the principalities and powers of this world, but we can resurrect it and make it stronger than ever by adding the words Sacramental or Recognized Natural to it, and by so doing, we will engage in the kind of social engineering that is badly needed at this time.

________________________________________________

More on Using Precise Terminology to Counter the Secular World

My recent Saving and Promoting True Marriage drew quite a few responses, most of which were quite favorable to the idea of using and emphasizing the more complete and more meaningful Sacramental Marriage to describe what true marriage is, especially in the public arena.

Nevertheless, some commentators do not accept my contention that the use of Sacramental Marriage is not caving into the secular world, and they express the view that we should continue to fight to use marriage as the shorthand for true or Sacramental Marriage.  This motivation is understandable, but the notion that using a more complete and accurate term is a concession to the secular world is simply wrong, and it reflects a misunderstanding of history and current reality regarding the better use of terminology. It also fails to appreciate the opportunity for renewed catechesis on the true meaning of marriage, which is, essentially, a Sacramental Marriage.

To be sure, it would be nice if everyone in the world understood and accepted the true meaning of marriage, but this is not the case, and, sadly, the trend is moving toward fewer and fewer people accepting the true and more traditional meaning of marriage.  As a result, the lone term marriage is also no longer being used as a shorthand for true marriage by much of the world.  This is the reality that we must confront and overcome; not simply whine about a misappropriated shorthand and all that goes with it.

So instead of crying about the darkness involved in the abuse of a particular term, we can shed greater light by using more precise terminology that cannot be so easily abused.  Moreover, whenever people of Christian faith have used the shorthand marriage in the traditional sense, it is understood that this pertains to Sacramental Marriage, so by using this more explicit term to defend and promote a proper understanding throughout the world as the world is today, we can counter the secular misunderstandings and enhance overall catechesis.  Not a bad result, that.

For some historical perspective in support of making changes in terminology to enhance clarity and understanding, consider how the term Christian referred to all members of the faith (with some exceptions) prior to the Reformation in the 16th Century.  Afterwards, to make a proper distinction, the more precise term Catholic or even Roman Catholic eventually became necessary to distinguish between members of the Catholic faith and other Christian denominations.  The shorthand Christian was no longer adequate because it no longer pertained to Catholics alone.

Now, did we lose some meaning or understaning by no longer being able to use the shorthand Christian to refer only to all members of the Catholic faith?  Could it not be argued that the appropriation of the term Christian by other denominations was unjustified?  Perhaps, but what is the reality today?  Does not the leadership of the Catholic church recognize and refer to some denominations as Christian even though they are not Catholic?  Also, the term used by leaders and general members alike when referring to our church is almost exclusively Catholic.  Indeed, this is more precise terminology that encompasses and goes beyond the shorthand Christian, and the greater precision also provides a greater understanding.

To reiterate, it is indeed unfortunate that the shorthand term marriage has been appropriated for improper use, but such is the reality.  However, this reality can also be an opportunity to better explain to the world what true marriage is by using more precise terminology that cannot be wrongly appropriated by secular forces.

DB

What Do Calls for “Open Dialogue” and “Common Ground” Really Mean?

Posted on

DB:

In light of the recently concluded Synod, the following post contains applicable commentary regarding what has been published about maturing in faith, ever more dialogue, an so on.

Originally posted on Omnia Vincit Veritas:

Many years ago I gave a talk on abortion at an ostensibly Catholic institution.  The talk was well-received, but after it was over, one of the administrators of the institution suggested to me that perhaps the pro-life side would be better served if it engaged in more of an “open dialogue” with “pro-choice” advocates.  When I asked what he meant by this, he responded that the “pro-choice” side might have some good reasons for advocating abortions from time-to-time, so simply condemning their position makes it impossible to reach any common ground that could be helpful.

Common ground?  Helpful to whom?

I then asked the fellow how many innocent babies he would be willing to sacrifice from having such an “open dialogue,” and he quickly retorted that my response demonstrated an unwarranted “hostility” to his “reasonable suggestion” to try to find some common ground between the opposing sides in the abortion debate.  Perhaps…

View original 444 more words

Some Much Needed Clarification on Creation and the Big Bang Theory

Posted on

Recently Pope Francis made a statement about the Big Bang theory (part of which is inaccurate as will be explained below) that has sent many people into a tizzy over what the Church teaches or does not teach regarding creation. Moreover, some misguided Catholics have claimed that the Church should not make any pronouncements about anything except “faith and morals.” ‘Know your place, Church!’

Of course, this kind of advice regarding what the Church should do is preposterous because the Church has the overall mission of proclaiming the truth of creation and the meaning of life, and so it can and does make wise use of science as a gift of God when making proclamations that have a relationship to things scientific. Moreover, the Church promotes science and scientific discoveries despite what many opposed to the Church claim, especially when they bring up their favorite but falsely reported stories of what actually happened in the cases of Galileo and Bruno. Pretending to be opponents of all mythology, they stubbornly cling to their faith in the exaggerated reports concerning Galileo and Bruno, and they use the mythology as “proof” of their remarkably unlearned claim that the Church opposes science. Too bad they don’t have such faith in reality.

The Reality of the Big Bang

Speaking of reality, the Big Bang is simply the event that began the expansion of the galaxies. It is not the first moment of creation, and creation is rightly understood as creatio ex nihilo (creation out of nothing). Physics/cosmology is limited to measuring/observing physical objects.  It cannot measure or observe anything that lacks physical being like the nihilo, and the bizarre attempt to declare nothing to actually be something completely misses the point of what nothing means and represents: NO PHYSICAL or MATERIAL THING. Scientists with an atheistic attitude like physicists S. Hawking and L. Krauss and biologist R. Dawkins like to play this word game of declaring nothing to actually be something (a kind of vacuum the physicists say, and Dawkins drinks their Kool-aid), and they attract many lapdog followers who do not bother to seriously investigate what these fellows and their minions are really claiming, which is irrational nonsense. Proudly declaring nothing to actually be something is yet another failed attempt to make metaphysical claims based solely on physics. Those like Hawking, Krauss, and Dawkins are way out of their league here, but their failure to recognize the limits of science blinds them to their own irrationality in making mythological claims wrapped up in pseudo-scientific garb to impress themselves and like-minded fellow travelers who practice the religion of scientism.

Now, the discovery of the Cosmic Background Radiation in the early 1960s supports the Big Bang Theory, so it is prudent and wise to accept the likelihood that such an event occurred. What isn’t wise is declaring the event to be the moment of creation that many people do indeed claim for the big bang, and they also wrongly cite Fr. Georges LeMaître (the “father” of the big bang) in this regard. However, Fr. LeMaître never made such a claim, and he also cautioned others to not make that assumption. Alas, Pope Pius XII and now it seems Pope Francis as well did not heed LeMaître’s warning in claiming a quality or aspect of the Big Bang that it does not possess.

Prudence is Always Wise

What is, of course, always necessary is to exercise cautious prudence when making claims that involve unsettled science, but as promoters of the truth wherever it is found, it would be ridiculous to follow a recommendation to stay completely silent on such things, especially since that would help elevate the secular world’s take on these matters that pertain to ultimate questions of existence.  In fact, it is the secular world that should stop claiming any alleged scientific discovery or “proof” of “when it all began.” It is simply beyond the province of science forever.  Creatio ex nihilo can never be measured or observed. People of faith also need to recognize this reality instead of wrongly using and/or misinterpreting the work of Fr. LeMaître and others to pin false hopes on an impossible claim that “science proves a first moment of creation.”

DB

More on Using Precise Terminology to Counter the Secular World

Posted on

Originally posted on Omnia Vincit Veritas:

My recent post on Some Good that Could Come Out of Legalizing “Homosexual Marriage” drew quite a few responses, most of which were quite favorable to the idea of using and emphasizing the more complete and more meaningful Sacramental Marriage to describe what true marriage is, especially in the public arena.

Nevertheless, some commentators do not accept my contention that the use of Sacramental Marriage is not caving into the secular world, and they express the view that we should continue to fight to use marriage as the shorthand for true or Sacramental Marriage.  This motivation is understandable, but the notion that using a more complete and accurate term is a concession to the secular world is simply wrong, and it reflects a misunderstanding of history and current reality regarding the better use of terminology. It also fails to appreciate the opportunity for renewed catechesis on the true meaning…

View original 453 more words

Saving and Promoting True Marriage

Posted on

Originally posted on Omnia Vincit Veritas:

(Below is a slightly revised copy of an article I first published in May, 2012, and a few times over the past year or so. The inevitability of the secular trend set forth below should be more apparent than ever, so I am posting the article once again to provide some alternative considerations on how to counter secular advances with an ever greater emphasis on spiritual realities.)

It seems inevitable that so-called gay (Always keep in mind that the term GAY is also an acronym – G.A.Y. – promoted by homosexuals to stand for Good As You in the sense that homosexual morality is just as good as heterosexual morality.), or same-sex marriage will become legally recognized by more and more regions throughout the world as secular forces continue to promote and make gains in this area. While the entire concept of same-sex marriage is absurd and offensive…

View original 583 more words

On Second Thought, He Does Criticize Papal Statements in Public

Posted on

A Second Reflection on Michael Voris and Criticizing Papal Statements in Public

If a Cardinal, Bishop, or Priest imitates by word and context what Pope Francis says about this or that, and Michael Voris lambastes the Cardinal, Bishop, or Priest in public as he is wont to do, then by extension he is also criticizing the Pope’s statements in public even if he does not name the Holy Father in the process.

So unfortunately for Michael, it’s disingenuous for him to claim a high ground because he directly and publicly criticizes other leaders in the Church by name, but refuses to directly and publicly criticize the Pope by name when the other leaders and the Pope say essentially the same things.

Breaking this down, it looks like this:

Pope F says XYZ about moral issue SSSS.

Cardinal D imitates Pope F and says the same XYZ (in both word and context) about moral issue SSSS that Pope F says.

MV lambastes Cardinal D in public for saying XYZ about moral issue SSSS.

Since MV publicly criticized the XYZ statement, then anybody, including the Pope, who makes the same statement comes under the same public criticism of MV whether or not they are directly named by MV.

If the above seems a tad esoteric, then just think of it this way:

Assume Pope F calls MV on the phone, and he says the following:

“MV, please stop criticizing Cardinal D, Bishop Q, and Father B, because they are saying the same things that I say regarding moral issue SSSS. In criticizing them, you are also criticizing me. Remember: ‘Whatsoever you do to the least of my brethren, that you do unto me.’”
___________

O what tangled webs we weave when we fall into a vortex of our own making.

DB

Only God is Beyond Public Criticism; Not the Holy Father

Posted on

“Who is like God?”
—–St. Michael the Archangel

As a supporter of much of the good work done by Michael Voris, his recent manifesto with the following proclamation did not really come as a big surprise to me as it has to others:

“ChurchMilitant.TV Will Not Engage in Public Criticism of
the Pope”

Over the years, many good people have literally begged the recent Holy Fathers to clean the Lord’s House via stronger disciplinary actions, removals from offices, and so on,…but I don’t believe Voris ever made similar calls directed at the occupant of Peter’s chair. As such, his proclamation is simply a statement of a position he has maintained as a commentator on the Catholic Church.

Nevertheless, this unnecessary and very weak position is somewhat similar to the approach adopted by many left wing commentators regarding President Obama. Like Voris opines regarding the Pope and ‘possible harm to the Church and potential converts’ from any kind of criticism of Pope Francis, left wing commentators claim that criticizing Obama in any way will cause greater harm to black people and left wing causes. Truth does not matter as much as the leader and the cause du jour.

Voris’ position is that he will continue to criticize the ‘cabinet’ (Members of the Curia), the ‘joint chiefs of staff’ (Members of Bishops’ Conferences, etc.), and ‘generals on the ground’ (Bishops and Cardinals in general), but the ‘commander-in-chief’ (Pope) is untouchable,…even though Voris makes it clear that that any pope can and does make mistakes.

Voris simply does not understand the call to also imitate Christ regarding appropriate criticism of the pope, and the secondary call to also imitate the example of the Saints in this regard. If Our Lord could and did criticize the first pope, and if St. Paul could and did criticize the first pope (and such criticisms are memorialized in the Scriptures, thereby making the criticisms Public and Present at all times), then others can imitate them and criticize the Holy Father in an appropriate manner prescribed by Church teachings. Our Lord and St. Paul did not back away from so criticizing Pope Peter because of concerns that ‘such criticisms could possibly harm the Church and potential converts.’

So as Our Lord, St. Paul, and others clearly demonstrate, it is the Truth above all else that must be defended, even if this entails criticizing the Holy Father in his decisions that are not protected by the Holy Spirit. Moreover, if criticizing the Holy Father in an appropriate way can better serve the Truth, to not do so can actually cause more harm to the Church.

DB

Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.