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Wednesday, August 20, 2008

Comments

T. Shaw

Our Lady of Victory, pray for us!

David Werling

Putin isn't a Bolshevik, and the US Missile Shield isn't intended to ensure freedom for the Catholic religion. The real threat is from a military presence in Eastern Europe under the control of a growing materialistic and secularist West.

Loyolalaw98

David,

1.) "Putin isn't a Bolshevik." Does any leader in the KGB ever eliminate the contagion of communism? The KGB "network," including both Putin and Medvedev, are running the new kleptocracy that Russia has become.

2.)The US missile shield will help insure the independence of Poland, sans Russian domination and intimidation, which will penultimately preserve Poland as an independent Catholic country.

3.)"the real threat" is the west? Go and try setting up your latin mass society in Russia today and then preach about the "dangers" of the West. The dangers we face are based on the freedoms that are extended to our people. These can be real, and deadly to the soul. I would rather, however, deal with these problems than those coming out of a dictatorial, xenophobic and aggressive Russia.

David Werling

I'm no supporter of Putin, but to cast him in the Bolshevik mold is disingenuous. Both his terms as president saw the most reform of the Russian political infrastructure (much more than under Yeltsin), especially of the judiciary. He also worked to rid Russia of the Yeltsin era corruption and the mobs that took control in the power vacuum following the Soviet collapse.

Dictatorial - yes.
Xenophobic - yes.
Aggressive - yes.

But when has Russia been any different?

The Russian people have historically always gravitated toward a dictatorial center and a distributionist economy. Communism didn't work in Russia until the inhumane mechanisms of Stalin made it work. Democracy to even have a chance of lasting more than one or two generations in Russia will require the mechanization of "sovereign democracy", and tight central controls that ensure economic localism. That appears to be Putin's domestic objective.

The West - Look around you! Look just north of you in SanFran. There's a greater danger from these personal "freedoms", actually what they are is license to perpetuate evil, than there is in persecution.

As Alexander Solzhenitsyn said:

"Destructive and irresponsible freedom has been granted boundless space. Society appears to have little defense against the abyss of human decadence, such as, for example, misuse of liberty for moral violence against young people, motion pictures full of pornography, crime and horror. It is considered to be part of freedom and theoretically counter-balanced by the young people’s right not to look or not to accept. Life organized legalistically has thus shown its inability to defend itself against the corrosion of evil."

What the West rejected when it embraced modernism and subjective humanism, and what the modern West now offers the rest of the world is something far more dangerous than persecution or even Stalinism. The modern West offers the dogma that there is nothing evil inherent in the human condition, and this dogma will wear away at man's ability to overcome evil. Persecution and martyrdom strengthened the Christian faith. Our modern Western world erodes it away slowly.

If you ask those in the underground Church in China what they would like you to pray for, they will respond not with that they should be given the freedom to practice their religion publicly, but that God give them the courage and strength to endure their persecution.

BTW, I don't really care what your personal rules are for capitalization, but not capitalizing the L in Latin or the M in Mass seems disrespectful. Secondly, it is not "my" Latin Mass society. I do not have a Latin Mass society.

David,

1.)You state "Communism didn't work in Russia until the inhumane mechanisms of Stalin made it work."

The 20,000,000 million people Stalin murdered might disagree with you over the definition of "work."

2.) I stand corrected, you have a Latin Mass BLOG, that by it's own definition is "dedicated to providing news and information regarding the Extraordinary Form of the Roman Rite in north-central Indiana and southwestern Michigan, and to the promotion of Traditional Catholic culture and spirituality." I'd like to see you try and run your blog in Russia today, or even better China.

3.) Catholics in China don't want religious freedom? I read your statement that "those in the underground Church in China what they would like you to pray for, they will respond not with that they should be given the freedom to practice their religion publicly, but that God give them the courage and strength to endure their persecution," with disbelief.

Clearly if freedom cannot be achieved, one would seek divine grace to endure the suffering, BUT NOT TO THE EXCLUSION OF WORKING FOR RELIGIOUS LIBERTY, OR PRAYING FOR IT.

There are tinges of some type of warped Jansenism in what you are saying.

David Werling

Hm. I don’t think you are reading me very clearly. Apparently you have in your head certain assumptions that are far off the mark.

You wrote:

‘1.)You state "Communism didn't work in Russia until the inhumane mechanisms of Stalin made it work."

The 20,000,000 million people Stalin murdered might disagree with you over the definition of "work."’

You act as though I somehow agree or would comply with Stalin’s methods. That certainly is not the case, and you should have picked up on that when I termed those methods “inhumane”. Indeed, they were demonic.

What I’m trying to convey is that the Marxist ideology did not come to full fruition in Russia despite the triumph of the Bolsheviks because the essential nature of the Russian people is diametrically opposed to Marxism. What arose in Russia was not the worker’s paradise envisioned by Marx. The Bolshevik enterprise was on the verge of total collapse until, unfortunately, Stalin made it “work” by sheer terror and despotism.

Dostoevsky once made a comparison between his Holy Mother Russia and the Gadarene demoniac in his book, Demons. In the words of the dying socialist professor, Stepan Trofimovich Verkhovensky, his Russia was the Gadarene demoniac. Dosteovsky puts into the mouth of Stepan Trofimovich Verkhovensky:

“Terribly many thoughts occur to me now: you see, it’s exactly like our Russia. These demons who come out of a sick man and enter into the swine ­ it’s all the sores, all the miasmas, all the uncleanness, all the big and little demons accumulated in our great and sick man, in our Russia, for centuries, for centuries! Oui, cette Russie que j’aimais toujours. But a great will and a great thought will descend to her from on high, as upon that insane demoniac, and out will come all these demons, all the uncleanness, all the abomination that is festering on the surface…and they will beg of themselves to enter into swine. And perhaps they already have! It is us, us and them, and Petrusha…et les autres avec lui, and I, perhaps, first, at the head, and we will rush, insane and raging, from the cliff down into the sea, and all be drowned, and good riddance to us, because that’s the most we’re fit for.”

This was a prophetic passage. Dostoevsky must have been granted a prescient vision of what Our Lady of Fatima would say about Russia. The Bolsheviks brought a demonic possession to Russia, and the result was the insanity, a psychic madness of societal proportions, of Stalin and the Stalinists. Our Lady told the children of Fatima that “Russia will spread her errors throughout the world”; Verkhovensky’s “us, us and them”.

My point, however, is that when the Gadarene deomniac was healed by Our Blessed Lord, he sat at his feet in peace. The demons are being expelled from Russia at this very moment. But as Jesus healed the blind man who had been blind from birth by way of a process, so Russia is being healed in stages. As Our Lady promised, Russia, however long it might take, will return and will sit at the feet of our Savior, and the world will stand in awe, and for many, in fear.

You wrote:

‘2.) I stand corrected, you have a Latin Mass BLOG, that by it's own definition is "dedicated to providing news and information regarding the Extraordinary Form of the Roman Rite in north-central Indiana and southwestern Michigan, and to the promotion of Traditional Catholic culture and spirituality." I'd like to see you try and run your blog in Russia today, or even better China.’


Thank you for visiting the infoblog. Your interest in it is very much appreciated, but your use of it for an example is irrelevant as a counter-argument to my points.

If it were God’s will that that infoblog be shut down tomorrow, then there’s nothing I could or would do to stop it. You are giving credit for the existence of that infoblog on the “freedoms” that I have been given on account of living in this great nation, but the reality is, that blog exists because God allows it, by allowing the certain given circumstances, such as sufficient leisure time to keep it updated, etc.

One of these circumstances is that in this country there is no law disallowing it. You interpret this allowance as a “freedom.” It is not, however, true freedom; it is simply license. You can say that David Werling has license to manage a Traditional Latin Mass infoblog. Fair enough. But I do not have the “freedom” to manage a Traditional Latin Mass infoblog. Why? Because managing a blog is not a freedom.

Freedom is the ability to do the good; it can not be understood in a purely legalistic manner (as it most commonly is in the US), but it can only be understood in relation to moral behavior. Managing an infoblog is neither good or evil, in and of itself. What makes it good or evil, of moral value, is the intended purpose of my managing of this infoblog. The intended purpose is, as stated, to provide a service (relate news concerning the Traditional Latin Mass in the Michiana area), and to promote traditional Catholicism. Those things are the actions that have moral value. I have the freedom to both provide information concerning the Traditional Latin Mass and to promote Traditional Catholicism.

AND (and this is crucial)… and I would have the freedom either here or in Russia or in China. Perhaps I wouldn’t be able to promote Traditional Catholicism via the internet in those places, but I certainly would have the freedom to do it, even if doing it meant I would be executed for it. Does this help in your understanding of what freedom is?

Perhaps regrettably or happily (depending on how I do with the life God has given me), I don’t happen to live in either place. I do happen to live in the US, which for the time being, doing these things will not result in martyrdom. But don’t get too comfortable with the present state of affairs… as the years 1818 and 1939 proves, things can change at the drop of a hat. Today I could be updating the Collect of the Day and tomorrow they could be packing my family and me into a rail car for a one way trip to a concentration camp… even in this great nation.

You wrote:

‘3.) Catholics in China don't want religious freedom? I read your statement that "those in the underground Church in China what they would like you to pray for, they will respond not with that they should be given the freedom to practice their religion publicly, but that God give them the courage and strength to endure their persecution," with disbelief.’

This obviously comes from lack of experience, and doesn’t warrant a response beyond that.


You wrote:

‘Clearly if freedom cannot be achieved, one would seek divine grace to endure the suffering, BUT NOT TO THE EXCLUSION OF WORKING FOR RELIGIOUS LIBERTY, OR PRAYING FOR IT.’

What do you mean by religious liberty? That is always an interesting debate, and I would love to toss that one around.

Just so you know where I’m coming from: I don’t strive for religious liberty. I pray and work for the liberty and exultation of Holy Mother Church and, thereby, the Reign of Christ.


You wrote:

‘There are tinges of some type of warped Jansenism in what you are saying.’


Whenever a modern Catholic wants to characterize someone as a religious extremist boogieman, he throws out the accusation of Jansenism. This is a strawman… even a lowblowstrawman. In nothing I have written have I ever hinted at a salvific determinism of any kind. I’m not even sure to what, in what I have written, that you are referring to as Jansenism. Perhaps some clarification and an argument to back up your accusation would be charitable.

David Werling

I need to clarify this:

AND (and this is crucial)… and I would have the freedom either here or in Russia or in China. Perhaps I wouldn’t be able to promote Traditional Catholicism via the internet in those places, but I certainly would have the freedom to do it, even if doing it meant I would be executed for it.

This is a redefining of freedom, and it is not what I intended to say. I got caught up in my own rhetoric and it resulted in extremely sloppy logic… well, actually, plain old illogic.

Freedom, of course, can not be separated from an absence of exterior coercion. I can not claim to be free, and at the same time be destroyed for exercising that freedom. What I am intending to say is that doing the good is necessary even in the circumstances of persecution, and that grace is merited thereby. These graces, as confessed by those who have undergone it, and as proclaimed by the Church when she venerates the holy martyrs, are powerful graces. This doesn’t justify the persecution, of course. It is intended to demonstrate that in view of the final goal, that is our heavenly home, living in our so-called free society may count for very little compared to those who endured from themselves and for us oppression with Christ on the Cross.

MonicaFratus

Where is the original of this painting located? It was painted by Jerzy Kossak, not his father.

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