Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Persecuted or not Persecuted?

His Grace of Westminster says we are not persecuted. He is right, there is little blood spilt in the Piazza of Westminster Cathedral no beying mobs yelling for his blood in Ambrosden Avenue, English society has moved on from the time when my presbytery was "built with windows too narrow for a man to climb through", protection against the locals in the past, fire hazard today.

Archbishop Vincent Nichols says we are not persecuted yet Lord Carey the former Archbishop of Canterbury says Christians are persecuted.

It all depends on what you call persecution, you have to have some resistance if you are going to be martyred; burn Caesar's incense and everything is hunky-dory, refuse and things get a bit difficult, that is precisely the situation that is brewing in the US.

Here, our adoption agencies are closed with barely a whimper. Connexions are welcomed in our schools. Oona Stannard and the then Archbishop of Birmingham, Vincent Nichols seemed to be happy collaborators with the then Education Secretary Mr Ed Balls. I keep meeting young medics who choose psychiatry because the fear that other branches of medicine are likely to become more difficult for Catholics with a conscience. I must say I can't recall the last time I met a practicing Catholic who was a dispensing pharmacist. Increasingly Catholic social workers are finding difficulty in being involved in adoption. Similarly Catholic registrars can be presented with problems, do they or do they not register civil partnerships? What about their future when required to perform same sex "marriages"?
Then of course as the sensible Mr Sensible says, what about Sunday working?

There is no point in persecuting the compliant, Cardinal George, in the US, has said, "I expect to die in bed, my successor will die in prison and his successor will die a martyr in the public square". I think there something about quality of leadership, I often wonder if is prudent or wimpish, but then I wonder about my leadership: Is it prudent or wimpish?


Fr Ray Blake said...

EF Pastor.
Thanks- corrected!

Gigi said...

Like many many others in Brighton and across the UK, I'm finding it difficult to get a "decent" full-time job. Part-time work offered to me has always unfortunately seemed to include Sunday working, which I have so far managed to resist. I've been turned down for jobs because I didn't want to work a Sunday shift; obviously not directly because I'm Catholic, but I have had some strange looks and a bit of sarcasm when I've explained why I don't want to work on Sundays. One prospective employer who said she was Catholic told me I was "quite old-fashioned" and warned me that other emplouers would think it a bit "airy-fairy". Hmmm. When I worked in Social Services, my lovely Muslim friend was allowed time out of the office everyday for prayers. Just sayin'...

Recusant said...

Splintered Sunrise ( back and commentating on matters ecclesiastical again; and on the state of our leaders.

Lynda said...

I can see why the Archbishop wouldn't be "feel[ing]" persecuted - he has not stood up and railed against the radical immorality and injustices imposed on people by many of the State's laws and policies. He has allowed it all to happen with barely an objection, in the case of the CPA even accepting it! Catholics (and others who respect the Natural Law) in many parts of the Western world where atheistic principles provide for tyrannical, invalid laws, are not only persecuted but are without the support of their spiritual and moral leaders, and feel abandoned.

The Bones said...

Looks like Catholics can't be midwives.

Vicky said...

How are catholic registrars persecuted? Their consciences would surely be troubled if they married a catholic as the marriage would be invalid, and the parties fornicating!

gemoftheocean said...

"I wonder about my leadership: Is it prudent or wimpish?" Given the direction from Westminster, I'd say you were neither. I'd say you were pretty brave to be mentioning at all. You're more or less the boy who pointed out that the emperor has no clothes. Unlike the boy, however, you are fully aware of what you're doing and therefor are potentially more in the line of fire for noting the emperor's state of dishabille. In order to correct a problem you have to acknowledge it. WEstminster seems to turn a blind eye. You step outside the box more than the average Englishman, who has a tendency towards deference, even though deference is not always the best policy.

John Ross Martyn said...

Have Catholic adoption agencies been closed? I understood that they have cut their links with the Church, but continue to operate, and are complying with equality law.

I simply want to know what the true situation is. I am not saying that the equality law was rightly applied. said...


Let us examine the whole 'picture' over the last few years.

The BBC has tried their best to undermine Christianity for a number of years. They were publically slaughtered for showing a live suicide, only last year.

The anti God brigade which is backed by the BBC, sides with any attempt to rattle, confuse, even attempt to destroy Christian Faith.

Legalisation of same sex partnerships, wanting to legalise same sex marriages, adoption of children into same sex partnerships, IVF programmes for same sex couples and on and on.

Go back 30 years,

where Sunday meant - no work and going to a Christian Service.

where people held a lot more respect for each other, the authorities - police and teachers - and also parents.

where Law and Order meant what it says.

where a custodial sentence did not give you an IPoD, games console, TV and internet facilities in jail.

where prisoners did not ask for mobile phones to be smuggled in.

where riots on the horrific scale as we had recently, would not happen.

where a police officer told you to behave and you did, otherwise your parents would assist in helping you to remember the fact.

where life from conception to death meant something precious.

Slowly, we are seeing changes which are developing a society that wish to live ourside the existance of The 10 Commandments.

Christianity is under attack. Wake up and smell the coffee and more importantly - FIGHT BACK AND DEFEND GOD.

Pablo the Mexican said...

Continuation 2 of 2......

One unnamed source from the Archdiocese of Washington D.C. says that Cardinal Weurl is in a very tight spot. "On one hand, we can't let the laity tell us who can and cannot be priests in our diocese. On the other hand, we find this sort of outdated ecclesiology disgusting. If Cardinal Weurl had known what kind of priest Guarnizo was, he would have never granted him faculties in the first place. We are all deeply offended by this kind of bigotry. But now, it's been done. Ms. Johnson is a prominent Catholic layperson and we can't afford to offend people like her, but we also have to save face for the archdiocese. It wouldn't surprise me to see Fr. Guamizo quietly transferred to Peoria when his term is over."

Meanwhile the Strap-On Warriors have announced a rally in front of the rectory of St. John Neumann Church this Saturday, where they plan to proclaim Jesus' unconditional love for everyone. Professor Buckman: "Fr. Guarnizo is going to learn about love from people who understand love. Jesus taught us all to love everyone, no matter what. The Strap-On Warriors are committed to sharing that love with everyone. And if they refuse to love with us, then they'd better watch out."

Henry Mildow, a volunteer with St. John Neumann parish says that he hasn't seen Fr. Guarnizo since Sunday. "The last I heard, he snuck out of the rectory in a disguise. If he returns, they say he will have a police escort and wearing a bullet-proof vest."


The Church where the good Padre is located should be surrounded by Bishops; those two pointy things on their hats are for attack.

Just thought I would remind them.


Pablo the Mexican said...

Speaking of Persecution:

Where are the Amchurch Bishops?

Protecting The Integrity of Lesbianism
The Idiot's Guide to Catholic News

Father Marcel Guarnizo of the Archdiocese of Washington D.C. had better watch his step. After publicly refusing Communion to Lesbian Barbara Johnson at her mother's funeral because of her relationship with partner Kathleen de Bold, the archdiocese has been forced to apologize to Johnson, who is demanding that Guarnizo be removed from public ministry in the archdiocese.

Johnson is not alone. Catholics all over the country are expressing their outrage that a priest would dare to enforce the teachings of the Church, and fear a return to the dark ages where only heterosexual married couples and celibate single people would be permitted to receive the sacraments.

Fern Buckman, adjunct professor of Moral Theology at Georgetown University, and President of the lesbian activist group, Strap-On Warriors (S.O.W.), is wary of priests like Guarnizo because of their militancy in defending outdated concepts that Catholics no longer espouse. "He told her that he couldn't give her Communion because she lived with a woman and in the eyes of the Church, that was a sin! What's next? Are we going to start hearing sermons about staying in a 'state of grace' and avoiding 'mortal sin'?"

Not that Buckman disagrees with the concept of sin. She simply thinks it should be applied to all Catholics in a more just manner. "Newt Gingrich is a convert to the Catholic Church. Why aren't any priests denying him Communion for his unrepentant destructive positions on the environment? He is publicly unrepentant with his 'Drill Here, Drill Now' campaign.

"This is a failure of one reactionary priest to recognize the gifts that GLBT people bring to the Church. I tell you, the Church in America will not survive without the support of all GLBT people. We will not be locked up in chastity belts and silenced!"

So what does Professor Buckman propose to do with priests like Fr. Guarnizo? "He needs to be suspended and educated while on suspension.

If he cannot recognize the beauty and blessing of all loving relationships and if he insists on using his position as a priest to promote his right-wing agenda of hate, then he must be excommunicated!"



Mundabor said...

Perhaps there's no need to die in prison, or as a martyr. The only thins which is needed is to use the influence the Church still has.

Of course, with the likes of Nichols this is not going to happen.


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