Wednesday, May 21, 2008

I can't find words


I cannot find words to express my disappointment at the passing of the HFE bill, I think Fr Richard is in the same position, he chooses "The Second Coming" by Yeats
Turning and turning in the widening gyre
The falcon cannot hear the falconer;
Things fall apart; the centre cannot hold;
Mere anarchy is loosed upon the world,
The blood-dimmed tide is loosed, and everywhere
The ceremony of innocence is drowned;
The best lack all conviction, while the worst
Are full of passionate intensity.
Surely some revelation is at hand;
Surely the Second Coming is at hand.
The Second Coming! Hardly are those words out
When a vast image out of Spiritus Mundi
Troubles my sight: a waste of desert sand;
A shape with lion body and the head of a man,
A gaze blank and pitiless as the sun,
Is moving its slow thighs, while all about it
Wind shadows of the indignant desert birds.
The darkness drops again but now I know
That twenty centuries of stony sleep
Were vexed to nightmare by a rocking cradle,
And what rough beast, its hour come round at last,
Slouches towards Bethlehem to be born?

21 comments:

pelerin said...

Oh sad, sad day!

May God forgive me for having voted for this government which I genuinely believed would be the more humane.

As a senior citizen I fear for their plans for those of us who may one day be described as 'a burden on the state.'

'Holy Mary, Mother of God, pray for us sinners now and at the hour of our death and look down in mercy upon England thy dowry.'

Bernadette said...

I can think of only one word:
"Maranatha"

nickbris said...

You just can't win an argument against wilful and ignorant people.

We elected that lot.

The only way we can get it over is to have referenda on these important issues.

The lies they tell when seeking election are truly actionable and half of them should be locked up.

Henry said...

What do you mean, you can't find words? Wicked. Stupid. Ignorant. Cruel. But the same can be said of nearly everything the British parliament says and does. Anyhow, that makes four words for you to be getting on with.

V said...

My first words are: oh *!&*

The Passion for Life Alliance campaign strongly recommends writing to MPs to express your views on how they voted on the HFE Bill, and to take their actions into consideration when voting in the next General Election.

To see how they voted on animal-human hybrids:
http://www.thisislondon.co.uk/news/article-23485975-details/MPs+who+voted+AGAINST+the+ban+on+human-animal+hybrids/article.do

To see how they voted on abortion:
http://www.publications.parliament.uk/pa/cm200708/cmhansrd/cm080520/debtext/80520-0023.htm
(scroll down to the Ayes & Noes)

FYI: David Lepper, MP for Brighton Pavilion & Celia Barlow, MP for Hove, both voted against the ban on a-h hybrids, and against reducing the abortion time limit to 20 weeks. They're also both pro-gay rights.

Find out more about your MP at:
http://www.theyworkforyou.com/
(love the title...)

And write to your MP at:
http://www.writetothem.com/

For info on pro-life groups:
http://hfebill.org/index.php?option=com_weblinks&catid=24&Itemid=23

miss book said...

I recall the words of the late Bishop Victor Guazzelli in 1997, 'catholics have nothing to fear from a Labour administration'
Labour had an anti- Catholic agenda then and it was visible i.e. 'Emily's List'. This is a means by which aspiring female Labour M.P.'s are assisted, but only if they are pro abortion, hence the large anti-life majorities in parliament.
I fear that many faithful Catholics were hoodwinked eleven years ago and the Hierarchy, I am sorry to say, did little to point out the importance of discerning and ascertaining the voting records and aspirations, of prospective M.P.'s on moral issues such as abortion.I recall we were advised that we should not vote according to single issues, i.e.status of an M.P. regarding abortion.Something about chickens and roosting springs to mind.And to cap it all, the former head of the most anti-Catholic administration since penal times, has himself, apparently become a Catholic, without a demonstrable repudiation of the anti-life and anti-Catholic policies for which he bore responsibility as Prime Minister.
With regard to the Human Fertilisation Bill, my P.P. explained to the parish that he had written to our M.P. to voice his objections, and that IF WE AGREED THAT WHAT WAS PROPOSED IN THE BILL WAS WRONG, we might do the same.It almost makes you want to weep, but I think it's better to pray.....

bernadette said...

The Passion for Life Alliance would do well to remain very very quiet. They did not help one litle bit. My words for them are unprintable.

michael petek said...

The problem with the Christian strategy until now has been that we've tried to reason with our elected representatives as supplicants, rather than acting as emissaries of a King who will surely punish them at the Last Judgement for what they have done unless, before then, they have applied to Him for an adjustment of their heavenly record cards.

Now, I hear what some of you are thinking: they don't fear the Last Judgement nor the holiness of God and His severity to those who bear public authority. Well, let them hear of it just the same, and if they won't hear it, then they won't hear anything else that'll bring them to their senses.

If we carry on as we've been doing up to now, we're guaranteed to lose this nation for Christ on the strategic level, and not just in the tactical engagements we've been having this week.

If we start talking about the Last Judgment, we won't be guaranteed to recover the nation for Him. But we won't be guaranteed a defeat either.

After all that I really must set aside some time to read von Clausewitz.

John said...

"miss book", I knew the late Bishop when he was Fr. Victor Guazzelli. He taught me New Testament Greek and Portuguese at the English College, Lisbon. He was a lovely man but I would never have taken his opinion of politics and politicians as my guide. He did not have a good grasp of world affairs and was perhaps far too trusting of his fellow man.
JARay

lms rep said...

After he had offered a TLM this evening for the LMS I told Father Richard how much his posting had struck a chord in my heart. From worrying me this Government has really started to frighten me.

Red Maria said...

I'm afraid it isn't just Passion For Life, or Alive & Kicking which must take their share of the blame for what is, by any scale a pretty catastrophic defeat, it is also the pro-life rank and file.
Pro-Lifers really have to take a good look at what is fancifully refered to as a "movement", more accurately a cluster of cliques and ask themselves some tough questions:
Why is it that their cause is not punching according to its weight? What is that Pro-Lifers are not demanding from Pro-Life organisations which would get them to up their game?
The answer lies in many of the comments made here.
Pro-Lifers do see their cause as an explicitly religious one. Thus they condemn it to perpetual marginalisation in a pluralist society. If Pro-Life can't be explained or justified in secular terms it is destined always to be rejected by mainstream politics. Most people in the UK aren't religious and are deeply suspicious of religious influence in politics. That is a fact which just has to be faced up to. The Passion For Life and Alive & Kicking campaigns were both far too heavily directed at a religious audience. Only one in seven adults attends church at least once a month in the UK. If either campaigns were to achieve anything they should have looked to expanding their base, rather they narrowed it.
Next, Pro-Lifers don't expect or demand any level of political competence from their organisations.
For example, one Pro-Life "leader", whose words are mystifyingly treated as near holy writ by Catholic bloggers, has thorougly alienated Pro-Life politicians with antics which can only be described as bizarre. Another self-appointed Pro-Life "leader" seems hellbent on importing lunatic American-style abortion campaigns into British politics.
Pro-Lifers don't demand democratically-run organisations, or an internal culture of free speech and frank criticism. You must not, therefore, be surprised, if you are not able to advance your arguments to the wider world.
Pro-Lifers don't ask basic questions about where their money is going and with what results. And let me tell you that there are some people in Pro-Life organisations on very fat salaries indeed.
Pro Lifers don't even demand that Pro-Life organisations employ people on the grounds of merit. Think about it, when was the last time you saw a post in a Pro-Life organisation openly advertised for competitive entry, even in the religious press? Then ask yourself how you think the people on the fat salaries got their positions. And ask yourselves why you seriously expect any results from these organisations when they don't employ people with the talent, the experience or the knowledge to achieve them.
Pro-Lifers don't demand organisations which put work into achieving real political results but assume that the political world owes their arguments a living. In a kinder, gentler world it would but that's not how the real political world works and nor did it ever. Successful campaigns take a lot of careful organising, hard work, sense of urgency and politically experienced personnel. Pro-Life campaigns aren't known for any of these, whereas Pro-Choice ones are. That is why they succeed and we always but always fail. It's not rocket science.

How to go forward?
The best thing that could happen would be for a real, vigorous, frank debate about the future, purpose, values and aims of Pro-Life to be conducted. It seems to me that Father Ray Blake is uniquely placed to facilitate this.

bernadette said...

However, unless we wake up and view this as a spiritual battle and one that cannot be won by clever human politics alone, we will be heading for more defeat. Innocent as doves, cunning as serpents; People who are clever politicians, who are aware of the spiritual battle. That is what we need.
How many people in the pro-life organisations have even read Humane Vitae ?

pelerin said...

Until I watched a tv programme last night I was under the impression that the Catholic Church was the only one to regard life as sacred from conception.

It appears I was very wrong as the whole programme was devoted to those from fundamentalist Christian churches who had recently taken part in demonstrations outside the House of Commons with regard to the recent voting by members. They too were anti abortion.

Newspapers seem always to have a go at the Catholic church for being anti abortion but this programme dealt exclusively with the fundamentalists (unless mention was made in the 2 or 3 minutes I left the room.)

Unfortunately, showing the arm waving members and interviewing one who told us that the world was definitely only 4,000 years old did not really give credibility to their anti-abortion views. The whole programme gave the impression that it was only the somewhat strange (to our eyes) fundamentalists who supported the rights of the unborn child.

A small group was shown demonstrating against the future possible building of a mosque in London and some expressed their fear that Moslems were having more children than Christians and would soon outnumber us in Britain. It almost seemed to suggest that their anti abortion stance was somehow linked to Islamophobia but of course we all know how the media can distort facts!

V said...

In a poll last month, a majority 40% of the 1,502 people asked were against the government's proposals to abolish the need for a father in IVF, 32% in favour, 28% no opinion.

However, when it came to A-H hybrids, only 30% were opposed, 50% in favour, 20% no opinion.

[http://www.populus.co.uk/the-times-the-times-poll-april-2008-060408.html]

So the father components of the Bill struck a chord with society at large, not only the religious community.

Those who were opposed to one element of the Bill were not against all of it. This shows a socio-scientific divide, not only one of secularism vs faith.

It sounds like people are now asking questions over "who is to blame?" for the passing of the Bill, and "what could have been done to prevent it (but wasn't done)?". My question is what can be done now? What can each of us do personally, and as one body?

I have a Catholic friend who donates sperm to a fertility clinic. He opposed the HFE Bill. He doesn't see a contradiction in this. This confuses me. I know many Catholic women who are pro-abortion. This saddens me.

This is an example of if Catholics were more united and clearer in the practical application of our faith, we would spend less time arguing amongst ourselves and more time presenting an indomitable force to the world.

The number of Catholics in the UK now surpasses the number of Anglicans, thanks to migrating Europeans (The Times, 15/2/07). Average Sunday Mass attendance stood at 1 million in 2005; it's now soaring. Over the next few years, Catholicism will become the dominant religion in Britain.

This is a strength we can harness.

Ma Tucker said...

It is so difficult to deal with these issues. People are not driven by rational argument anymore. Let us face the fact we live in a country where showing a picture of an aborted baby is against the law but aborting that baby is not. It is so crazy I cannot get my head around this stupidity. I think prayers and pictures are the only way on this one. We can forget about arguments. Further, the government does not reflect the people of this country. They have already signed away almost all judicial authority in the Lisbon treaty and are looking to pick up lucrative jobs in Europe as a result(sell your country for a few quid). We are now a state of this European Federation (assuming Ireland ratifies-please God she will not) . This Federation will force its terrible humanistic laws on its people and we can do nothing legally to stop it. We need a miracle. Pray for one.

miss book said...

John, I would't doubt your kindly reflections on the late Bp. Guazzelli for a minute, since you have the advantage over me, of having known him.I am quite happy to believe he was essentially a good and faithful bishop who has gone to his heavenly reward.
It is probably unfair to expect our bishops to have the sharpest political antennae, but bishops do have advisors, quite a few in fact. And the fact of 'Emily's List' was well known eleven years ago.With Labour's stated desire to get very many more women into parliament, it was inevitable that if it took power, a majority of Labour M.P.'s would be pro-abortion. Interestingly, today's Telegraph reports that Peter Jennings, a spokesman for the Archbishop of Birmingham,is encouraging Christians to "think carefully before they put their 'X' beside a name at the next general election.I would have thought that no member of Parliament who voted against human life deserves re-election."
Really, we could have done with this sort of reminder in 1997.I wonder if the words of Peter Jennings mark a break from the previous position of the Bishops' Conference regarding what is called 'single issue' voting?

michael petek said...

Pelerin, I saw that TV programme as well. The thing about Dispatches and Channel Four generally is that they excel at making normal but uncompromising Christians look like swivel eyed freaks, usually by focusing on those who, arguably, are.

The lady who was holding the picture of the Divine Mercy and yelling "baby murderers" at some pro-abortionists is known to me, as she has turned up at some pro-life events I have attended.

She calls herself Sister Ruth Augustine, but I am skeptical that she is any more a religious sister than I am. I recall hearing on the news a few years ago that she got slung off a internal flight to Scotland for being abusive to airline staff. No true religious sister would ever behave as she appears to have.

Now for the anti-mosque demonstration. I have known evangelical Christian Stephen Green for many years, and I know about his regular monthly prayer vigil at the site of a proposed mega-mosque next to the Olympic village in London. What the Dispatches team didn't mention is that the organisation behind the mosque is a separatist organisation called Tablighi Jamaat. The mosque is being opposed locally by Councillor Alan Craig of the Christian People's Alliance, and he has the support of a large section of the Muslim community who regard TJ as sectarian and dangerous.

Now, where I disagree with Stephen Green in his remarks about Islam is that it is not justified to say that Allah is Satan or some god other than the true one. When Muslims worship Allah they understand Him as being self-existent, and for this reason they are entitled to be acquitted of idolatry on that point.

Where I find traces of idolatry in Islam is in what Sunni orthodoxy professes about the Qur'an: that it is uncreated. That characteristic is applied to the ideas expressed in the Qur'an, in contrast to the teaching of St Thomas that existence is not a proper predicate of ideas - they are, rather, present to the intellect without themselves being subsisting entities.

Wahhabis of course extend the characteristc of uncreatedness to the paper, the bindings and the penstrokes and spoken sounds in which the Qur'an is manifested.

Now, since I have the advantage of being on Stephen Green's mailing list, I feel I should put his remarks on Islam in context. This is what he says in his April 2008 newsletter:

" . . . it is not against flesh and blood which Christians wrestle, but against spiritual wickedness in high places. The wickedness being enacted, anti-life embryology, the destruction of our Christian constitution and so on, shows secularism to be a jealous devouring god which allows no dissent. Yet even now, Islam is loitering in the wings of the political stage, and secularists have no answer except to use the old race relations model of hurling money in the hope of appeasing it.

"But it will not work. Islam, like fire, will never say 'enough'. Unless Christianity is asserted as the faith of this realm, and quickly, Muslims will try to substitute Islam as the faith of these Islands. Secularism is powerless to resist Islam. Secularist politicians, as we have so clearly seen in the establishment response to Islamic terrorism, don't have a clue what they are dealing with. Secularism also leaves a spiritual vacuum at the heart of government and nature, as we know, hates a vacuum.

"If present birth-rates amongst Muslims continue, and there is no sign of Muslims becoming secularised to the extent that they adopt the anti-child contraceptive mentality of the rest of us, then they will be in a majority within 40 years. But the experience of Tower Hamlets shows that the vacuum could easily be filled ten years before that. Even at 30% of the population, Muslims will want power and they will get 'the whip hand' as Mr [Enoch] Powell's constituent put it, over black, brown, and white alike. Then, if they gain a majority in Parliament, they will want to impose Sharia.

"At that point, which I suggest could be in thirty years' time, the majority may well decide to defend their desire not to live under Islam by force of arms. Whose side the Police and Armed Forces will be on in such a conflict is anyone's guess. The European Union will be powerless to come to the rescue, even if it is still in existence that far into the future. Germany will be facing the same Islamic problem . . .

"So, either from the EU or from Islam there is trouble looming. It could easily become external war or that most bestial of monsters, civil war. We must pray for national repentance, because only God in Jesus Christ can save us, and He will only do so if we turn to Him in our despair and cry out of the darkness for His mercy. Christians must take courage and confidence in the Gospel and in the rule of Christ and pray and work for His Kingdom, on earth as in heaven. God has not forgotten mercy, but time is running out. None of us wants to say, 30 years hence, 70years after his Wolverhampton speech, that in a peculiar sort of way, Enoch was right."

Laurence said...

"Unless Christianity is asserted as the faith of this realm, and quickly, Muslims will try to substitute Islam as the faith of these Islands."

Christianity cannot be 'asserted', it can only be spread by the witness of love to our neighbour.

Oh, I did have a thought today though. Her Majesty the Queen is a Christian and temporal power is vested in her to say no to certain leglislation. Is there any way she could have stopped the Bill?

Red Maria said...

Pelerin wondered whether the anti-abortion positions of the Christian fundamentalists featured on Channel 4's Dispatches were linked to Islamophobia, saying that the media can distort the facts.
Indeed it can but very clearly in this case it did not. Michael Petek has helpfully provided the evidence that Stephen Green is motivated less by humanitarian feeling, or Christian charity for the fate of the unborn child and more by competitive fertility rates. Ten children born to a Moslem family is, as far as Green is concerned, reason to be worried.
In case we don't get the implications, Green's words spell them out:
"Muslims will want power and they will get 'the whip hand' as Mr [Enoch] Powell's constituent put it, over black, brown, and white alike. Then, if they gain a majority in Parliament, they will want to impose Sharia."
From ten babies to Sharia law in several easy steps, and remember all Moslems want to take power. They're genetically or culturally predisposed to it, you understand.
We shouldn't need to do the obvious thing here and substitute the word "Jew" for "Moslem" and "Talmudic law" for "Sharia law" and feel disgusted with the resultant Protocols of the Elders of Zion text we see unfolding before our eyes.
Green's words are self-evident garbage and the man is nothing more than a charlatan. The sentiments he expresses are the antithesis of pro-life, which has always resisted state-sponsored competitive fertility manias, population control drives, eugenicist programmes and the like.
All this reinforces my conviction that there is an urgent need for Pro-Lifers to be properly educated about the core philosophical principles and history of Pro-Life.
In the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries similar bigoted anxieties as Green expresses about the fertility of Moslems were expressed about the Irish, the Jews, the working class and disabled. It was pioneering Pro-Lifers in alliance with hard-left Socialists who argued against such sentiments and successfully opposed the oppressive legislation proposed at the time.

Fr Ray Blake said...

Red Maria,
Thanks for that bit of common sense.

Red Maria said...

Pleasure, Father!