Thursday 31 May 2012

You can't make it up: mutant and black gay in love

No, I am not making fun of anyone!! This is a real story brought to our attention by The Guardian (who else?). A company which publishes popular comics announced "the couple" will be "married" in one of the next issues of the magazine. Sounds incredible? Funny? Ridiculous? Yes and no! My first impression was this madness is just one of the many unhealthy symptoms of our dying society. Unfortunately this is no laughing matter. The children wants to imitate their heroes in everything they do and that includes not only costumes, sayings, but also attitudes. No wonder, an American organization of mothers expressed its concern. The extreme ultra-liberals are seeking to promote their sickening version of morality amongst children and there is no way we can stop such monstrosity in a democratic society. What we can do, however, is to oppose the dictatorship of relativism in word and deed. Above all, we need more priests whose mission will be mainly apologetic. This can't be limited simply to teaching and explaining the faith. Going back to one of my previous posts, where I mentioned the talk given by prof. Steiner about the role of priests and prophets in Israel; it looks like we are living in times when priests will play the role of  the Old Testament prophets. Their role was quite simple - to speak the truth. As we now from the Bible, such vocation is never easy and many holy men have been killed or persecuted for their fidelity to the Word of God. I hope this ultimate sacrifice won't be necessary, but if it comes - let's ask for the strenght to say "Thy will be done".

P.S. Oh, and here is the original story: Mutant gays

Tuesday 29 May 2012

The feast of St. Philip Neri in Brompton oratory

I went to Brompton Oratory last Saturday to celebrate the feast of St. Philip Neri. Although the Holy Mass was NOT what people usually call "traditional Latin Mass", the Mass was celebrated ad orientem and in Latin. I could now describe in great details how encouraging and beautiful was to participate in a Mass, where priest and servers take their role seriously and the entire Mass is celebrated with much reverence and solemnity. That is not my intention however. Instead of writing ecstatic post on the splendour of Saturday's Mass, I would like to offer few controversial points of view for your reflection. Although I support the celebration of  "traditional Mass" as often as possible, I have realized how good and much needed was Vatican II. Here are my arguments:

1) Even in so called traditional Masses, the use of Gregorian chant is scarce. What is used instead is usually some 17th - 19th century religious music. Quite often Mozart, Bach or someone of such calibre. Please note, I have nothing against Mozart or Bach, but their music is not particulary spiritual. Sitting there on Saturday and listening to mostly Baroque music and watching servers in their 19th century rochets decorated by laces, I realized how vulgar and frivolous Baroque period was. Baroque is a synonym for the lack of taste and it was good, that Vatican II tried to eradicate these worldly elements from the Mass. Church is a house of prayer, not a music hall.

2) The cardinal was dressed in this vulgar, ridiculous, Baroque fashion. With servers holding his long veil and pair of richly decorated gloves, he resembled more a member of nobility, than a slave of God. Don't get me wrong - I do understand the reasoning behind such practise; after all a bishop is a prince among priests and in his earthly status equal to Seraphims in heaven. (can't remember exactly the phrase St. John Chrysostom used). However, such pomp looks slightly unnatural and even self-mocking in our times and therefore it was good, that Vatican II brought simplicity back to the Roman rite.

3) On the other hand, the Mass on Saturday was a good example how a Novus Ordo Mass should look like after "reform of the reform" will be accomplished. Mass served ad Orientem, frequent use of Latin, readings read by males serving in sanctuary and the Holy Communion distributed by priests only and not by women (unfortunately a matter of fact in majority of English parishes today). My last objection would be, that the Gospel was NOT read in English. I think possibility of offering the Mass in native languages of different cultures was a good fruit of Vatican II and this fruit should be preserved and cherished; along with the unifying fruits of the Latin language, of course...

I would welcome your feedback on this matter my readers!

Friday 25 May 2012

Silent crimes

The Telegraph just reported 24 abortions were performed on three teenage girls (NHS performed 24 abortions....); some of them had up to 7 pregnancies terminated. What terrifies me most is not the fact, that such things are allowed in the current ultra-liberal society; that is to be expected when God and his law is replaced by social constructs of morality, where evil is " philosophical construct" at best. The tragedy of abortion is multiplied by cowardly silence of those, who should be protecting the rights of the unborn. The "40 days for life" was an amazing event, but such event should be seen only as a first step in the long battle for the rights of innocents. We need a courageous support from our bishops, who should be ideally organizing and leading marches for life (protecting the unborn) and marches for family (against perverse understanding of human sexuality). If not now, then when? If not we, then who?

Sunday 20 May 2012

Gay trespassing prohibited!

Now that's what I call Christians with attitude! The Orthodox faithful promised to stop the planned gay parade, which could possibly take in Moscow on March 27. Cossacks and youth sport associations also promised to help to "patrol Moscow streets, especially places where 'perverts of all sorts' gather" (see the full story here: Orhtodox activists to prevent gay pride parade). It would be naive to expect similar action from Catholics in London and the use of the same vocabulary could even lead to a police investigation. However, we should be inspired by the brave example of our Orthodox brethren. I am not saying the Catholics in London should try to block the gay parade; that would be a futile attempt indeed. What I am saying is, that we should organize pro-marriage march on the same day (or very close to gay parade date) and clearly, peacefuly without hesitation or fear opppose the distorted view of human sexuality. Anyone is coming with me?

Friday 18 May 2012

Prophets and priests in Judaism

I've attended a lecture yesterday at Birkbeck, University of London. It was organized by Pears Institute for the Study of Antisemitism in cooperation with the School of Arts (Birkbeck). The talk was given by Professor George Steiner, who in his old age still sparks controversy. The topic could be summarized as: The history of Judaism and of Jewish identity has been characterized by radical inner tensions. These tensions, Professor Steiner suggests, oscillate between priest and prophet, the desert and the city, Zionism and the hopes and ideals of the Diaspora.

The lecture itself was more than interesting, but I would like to offer you only three main points for reflection:

1) revenge of the desert - The morals, laws, mentality of a desert is in direct opposition to a city. The life of the desert is wild, insecure, stripped to its bare necessities. The men of desert are brought to justice by the words they utter; the reputation of a man is established by his actions and words. A spoken word is more sacred than the ancient written law protected by the city authorities. On the contrary, the city is seen as a heart of law and order. City represents a defending wall against the wild spirits of a desert; the law (whether religious or civil) is to be protected and those find guilty, cast out behind the walls.

2) Tension between priest and prophet - Each and every prophet sent by God was killed or persecuted. No, not by pagans, but by those, who were entrusted to protect the purity and orthodoxy of faith. The prophet is always to be found at the left side of the priest...

3) In the Jewish tradition, a guest must leave his host in a better state than he was found. That means, a guest has an obligation to leave something, which will help those, who were entertaining him on his journey. We are only guests in life. We should leave life better than we found it.....

I hope the three main points I just shared with you (however imperfectly) will give you at least a glimpse of ideas of prof. Steiner. Why do I remember these three themes? 
Well, Jesus was a man of a desert and speaks in a parable about the landlord of the vineyard, whose servants were all killed, including the son (Luke 20:9-19)....And yet, he is also a priest. We refer to him as a priest forever according to the order of Melchizedek (Ps 110;4), the pure and perfect priest who went to the highest Heaven (Hebrews 7;26 and Ephesians 4;10) and so on. Jesus seems to unite these two ministries. Not only that, he reconciles the desert with the city. He came to fulfil the law, not to abolish it (Matthew 5:17)...And finally, we often say we are only strangers here on earth. Even more, exiles in the valley of tears (Salve Regina)! Although both terms are helpful in our spiritual battle, the term "guest" reveals another layer of understanding. It is a lovely and helpful tool in our daily strive for holiness. Only guests in life.... Jesus said: "Look, I create all things new (Rev 21:5)!". How about we? Will we leave the life in a better state than we found it?

Wednesday 16 May 2012

UK supports forcible sterilisation of Indian women

The headline says it all, but for those who would like to know more, here is the link: Population control: UK aid funds forcible sterilisation of India's poor. You think it's an exception? You are naive, the current government is promoting the culture of death quite aggressively and not only in India. Let's not forget the cutting of aid to Malawi and other African countries, when they dismissed David Cameron's bizarre homosexual propaganda. Jailing two homosexuals for their "engagement ceremony", the judge later said: "Malawi is not ready to see its sons getting married to its sons." (UK to Malawi: obey or your kids will starve to death!) What these two cases have in common? Well, they clearly illustrate the arrogant, cruel and racist attitude towards the so called "third world countries".While political correctness went mad in Britain, this new form of racism is spreading fast and spreading deep. I call it cultural racism. Let's be clear here; I do not approve the jailing of these two men, but I do understand the reasoning behind the judge's decision. More importantly, we have a duty to respect other cultures and traditions not just in words, but in deeds. Sadly, the UK does not recognize such duty at the moment. In reality, I fear the day when a state will determine what is moral and what is not. For when this day will come, I am pretty sure Christian morals will be seen as immoral...But let's go back to India's poor women. What was their crime? They had too many children! To be fair, we have to say the women went to a doctor and asked to be sterilised. But why did they asked for a sterilisation? Were they forced by their husbands? Or was it poverty beyond any European imagination? And did they really know what they are asking for? More importantly, the well fed Europeans have a DUTY to HELP people to make their lives better, not simply sterilise them like cattle. Yeah, but there are too many people on earth and we can't help everyone, an average Briton would say. We need to promote gender equality and reproduction rights, so people will behave more responsibly. Such arguments only distort the underlying attitude of advocates of the culture of death - NO MAN, NO PROBLEM.

Tuesday 15 May 2012

West has betrayed Christianity, Russia will save it

According to father Vsevolod Chaplin, a priest of the Russian Orthodox Church, West has betrayed Christianity (see the full story here: West has betrayed Christianity). While such statement might sound shocking, we should perhaps take a step back and look at the present state of the Church. Disobedient priests in Ireland, radical feminist nuns in America, homosexuals forcing Austrian priest to leave their parishes, archbishops saying things like "who knows what's down the road", girls as altar servers and we could go on and on. Well, if we are honest, we have to admit father Chaplin has a point. But here is the other way how to look at it. Let's not take it as rebuke, but rather as a brotherly advice, warning and  a last minute wake up call. The Church should embrace the challenges of today's world and rejoice in the opportunity to bear a witness. When I say the Church, I mean the Catholic Church of course; protestant churches are just "groups" or "communities" as Benedikt XVI. rightly reminded us in 2007 (Dismay and anger as Pope declares Protestant...). There is no need to wait in fear for another punch from forces which are seeking to obscure the Christian heritage of Europe and erase God and Christianity from the public discourse. Let's not forget, we are in the war! Truly, it is a spiritual combat, but this battle can sometimes manifest itself in the cultural wars of the present time. This is my very first post and God bless you all!