Sunday, August 31, 2008

St. Raymond Nonnatus

From the legend in todays office:

This Raymund is commonly called Nonnatus, or Unborn, because his was one of the rare cases in which the child is not brought into the world in the course of nature, but by a surgical operation after the death of the mother. He was the son of godly and noble parents, at Portel in Catalonia. The tokens of his holy after-life appeared even in his childhood. The things that delight children, and the attractions of the world, had no charm for him. He was so earnest in godliness that all men marvelled at his habits of premature old age. As he grew older, he gave himself to the study of letters, but, at the command of his father, turned to farming. He went often to the Chapel of St. Nicholas, in the suburbs of Portel, to visit the sacred image of the Mother of God, which is still sought with great tenderness by the faithful. There he poured forth his soul in prayer, and earnestly entreated the Mother of God herself to be pleased to take him for her son, to shew him the way wherein it should be safe for him to walk, and to teach him the science of the Saints.

And the most gracious Maiden was not deaf to his prayers. From her he understood that it would please her right well, if he would join the Religious Order which had just been founded at her own inspiration, styled Of Ransom or Of Mercy, for buying up and freeing slaves. As soon as he had received this intimation from her, he went to Barcelona, and entered the Institute so nobly dedicated to love for our neighbour. Once enlisted in the Regular Army, he guarded unspotted for ever the virginity which he had already consecrated to the Blessed Virgin for ever. But he was a bright and shining light of all other good words and works, especially of tender compassion for Christians who were passing a life of grievous bondage in the possession of unbelieving masters. To free such he was sent into Africa, and delivered many. But his money ran short, and as there were still many in imminent danger of denying the faith, he pawned himself. He was enkindled with a most vehement longing for the salvation of souls, and by his exhortations brought divers Mohammedans to Christ. The Moors therefore threw him into close prison, and put him to divers tortures, at last making holes through his lips and locking them together with an iron padlock, which horrid cruelty he long endured.

On account of these, and other brave things that he did, he got the name of a Saint far and wide. Gregory IX was moved thereby to make Raymund a Cardinal of the Holy Roman Church, but in this place of honour the man of God shrank from all outward shew, and clung ever tightly to the lowliness that beseemeth a Religious man. He had started for Rome, but had only got as far as Cardona, when he was seized with his last illness, and earnestly called for the strengthening Sacraments of the Church. But his position became critical, and the Priest had not arrived. Then Angels came unto him, clad in the habit of his own Order, and ministered unto him the wholesome Provision for the last journey. When he had taken it, he gave God thanks, and departed hence to be ever with the Lord. It was the last Lord's Day in August 1240. After his death there was some dispute arose as to where his body should be buried ; so they shut it up in a box, and laid it upon a blind mule, and the beast was guided by God to carry it to the chapel of St. Nicholas, that he might be buried where he had laid the foundations of his nobler life. There was built there a Convent of his Order, and the faithful come together thither from all parts of Catalonia to honour him, and he is famous for divers signs and wonders.

Prayer to St. Raymond:

V. The Lord guided the righteous in right paths.
R. And shewed him the kingdom of God.

Ant. on Magnif: Lo, a servant of God, *
who esteemed as naught all things earthly,
and by word and work laid him up treasures in heaven, Alleluia.

O God, who didst endue thy blessed Confessor
Saint Raymund with wondrous powers
for the deliverance from the capitívity of the infidel:
grant that, by his intercession ; we may be delivered
from the bonds of all our iniquities, and perform those
things that are acceptable unto thee with perfect freedom.

Saturday, August 30, 2008

Things that you can't do.....

..... NOT in a swimming pool

LOL @ Not being in a pool.

Actually, we've done street Marco Polo.

I Like.

Violent, But it get's the point across.

Oh gosh,I can't beleive how sick it is that I actually think that's funny. Actually, I think it's Hi-Larious.

Friday, August 29, 2008

Monday, August 25, 2008

If I was musical director for the day (Ordo Musicae)

Entrance Hymn: O God, Our Help in Ages Past.
Mass setting: Orbis Factor
Resp. Psalm: Graduale simplex, or tone VIII in English.
Credo: Credo I.
Offertory: Graduale Romanum
Offertory Motet: O Sacrum Convivium, Melchor Robledo.
Communion chant: Graduale Simplex.
Communion Hymn: O Jesus Christ, Remeber.
Communion motet: Ave Verum Corpus, Elgar.
Recessional:Thy Hand, o God has Guided.

If you can only listen to one, Go for the Ave Verum. That has to be the most amazing rendition I've ever heard of it. True beauty. What a darn shame that people want guitar masses over this.

Fr.J.Eddy's first Mass of Thanksgiving.

It was yesterday. I was there. I forgot to mention it. The brothers served, but with one of our regular boat-bearers as boat-bearer. I can't express my complete shock at how many people actually Sang at the mass. I Also attended said brother's diaconal ordination last year, with the missa de angelis sung. It was beautiful, with a luncheon in the parish all (So much for 'cookie reception' at Ivy Hall!) First blessings were given at a kneeler set up in the front, and yours truly got his in Latin. Yes! Because Everything is better in Latin. For real for real.
Also, I didn't talk too much about the altar server's rafting trip. I went, but the night before, I was terrified, and thinking of not going. I even had a dream where I was savagely attacked by a pack of bears, and drowned. Well, I changed my mind and went. Boring walk to the school+Lauds. Fun conversation in the school yard involving Cicadas. Boring car ride there, boring wait, almost funny pre-rafting instructions. Uncomfortable school bus ride to the river. Then came the river. It was shallow in some places, but extremely deep in others. Due to my traumatic drowning incident at age nine, I fear deep water, and had to sit in the middle of the raft away from the sides whenever the water got deeper than the paddle. Everyone went swimming. I can't swim. We got stuck on a lot of rocks, and during our water fights, I got water in my ears, and in my nose. When we went past the surprise rock, we hit the surprise. Two people got thrown off into te rapids. No one got hurt, but it was a scary experience. The raft that I was on reached shore second. Boring bus ride back to te start, Boring car ride home. Walk home+Vespers. Dinner. Compline+Bed.
Another thing to mention, there's two new novices in the Philadelphia Mercedarian community. Fun fellows.

Sunday, August 24, 2008

Part VI: The Canon of the Mass.( I )

The canon of the mass is an old prayer, reaching in substance,at least as far back as Gelasius I (Think gelasian Sacramentary), and Pseudo-St.Ambrose, who quotes a similar prayer as being that used in Milanese Italy at the time in 'De Sacramentis', and the canon is remarkably related to the Anaphora of St.James.
It consists of a series of three sets of three prayers, known by their respective Latin titles (1)Te igitur, Communicantes, Hanc igitur, 2) Quam oblationem, the Dominical words, Unde et memores, 3) Supra quae, Memento, Nobis quoque, ) Originally, These petitions were contained in the prayer of the faithful, but when these began to be used less and less (Eventually being dropped altogether) they were inserted into the prayers after the consecration. Soon, By pope St.Damasus' time, the prayers were split in half between the words of consecration. Still undeveloped, pope St.Gregory the great added the final touches to the Roman Canon, leaving us with what we have today.
Nowadays, there is a multiplicity (22!) of Eucharistic prayers. I personally object to their use*, because like many things, they were approved as a concession to disobedience and liturgical abuse.
During the final years of the Second Vatican Council, many priests, on their own initiative, began to write thiner own Eucharistic prayers and used them to imitate the practice of primitive Christians, and some eastern rites. Pope Paul IV condemned this as an abuse, and reminded preists that no ones was to undertake modifications to the rite of holy mass without the express permission of the local ordinary, and the holy see. Certain people who shall not be named told Pp. Paul VI that it would be better to simply construct and approve more Eucharistic prayers, since the abuse was too widespread to stem. He agreed, but on the condition that their use should be governed by specific rubrics, and that the roman canon, like Gregorian chant, would be given pride of place as that which is inherently proper to the Roman Rite. This didn't happen. Rather, they disregarded him, and set them out wit no governing rules at all, and with the roman canon soon falling out of use. Majorly digressing, we go to the subject of the first petition: Te Igitur.
The celebrant, with hands extended prays:

Therefore, most gracious Father, we humbly beg of You and entreat You through Jesus Christ Your Son, our Lord, to deem acceptable and bless these + gifts, these offerings, these holy and unspotted oblations which, in the first place, we offer You for Your Holy Catholic Church, that You would deign to give her peace and protection, to unite and guard her throughout the world, together with Your servant N., our Pope, and N., our Bishop; and all true believers who cherish the Catholic and Apostolic Faith.
Te first part of the te igitur,The gifts, the offerings, the holy and unspotted oblation is Christ. The priest, representing the community of believers should show us the manner that w e should participate in this sublime privilege of attending holy mass, humility, it can't be stressed enough, in these days of horizontal "me" oriented masses, where it's about me, me feelings, my personhood, my life, and God gets left out. An old interpretation says that we say "Haec dona", because Christ is the gift of the Father for the salvation of the world. And we say "Haec MuInera", because we offer him to the father, or rather, he offers himself to the Father. Ths should be our mindset. Self offering to God, and not just during mass. During this first part, pray for humility and a life centered on God.
In the second part, we pray for the Holy Catholic Church, and that God our Father would guide, protect, and govern her, along with the Pope,(The earthly representative of her head, Christ.) The Bishops (The successors of the apostles, who should hand on to us the faith true, uncompromised, and unabashedly.) and for all true believers who hold fast to the faith.(i.e., those not separated from the church by heresy or mortal sin.)
During this part, pray for the church, that she, her faithful, and Her pastors may recover from the problems most encountered in the modern church these days, especially the aging double-knit dinosaur that we call "Dissent".
That's all for now.
*I promise, no more opinion dumping.

Thou Art Peter..

" If any one consider and examine these things, there is no need for lengthened discussion and arguments. There is easy proof for faith in a short summary of the truth. The Lord speaks to Peter, saying, “I say unto thee, that thou art Peter; and upon this rock I will build my Church, and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it. And I will give unto thee the keys of the kingdom of heaven; and whatsoever thou shalt bind on earth shall be bound also in heaven, and whatsoever thou shalt loose on earth shall be loosed in heaven” (St. Matthew 16:18). And again to the same He says, after His resurrection, “Feed my sheep” (St. John 21:16). It is on him that He builds the Church, and to him that He entrusts the sheep to feed. And although to all the apostles, after His resurrection, He gives an equal power, and says, “As the Father hath sent me, even so send I you: Receive ye the Holy Ghost: Whose soever sins ye remit, they shall be remitted unto him; and whose soever sins ye retain, they shall be retained;” (St. John 20:21, 22) yet, He founded a single Chair. That He might set forth unity, He established by His authority the origin of that unity, as having its origin in one man alone. No doubt the others were all that Peter was, but a primacy is given to Peter, and it is thus made clear that there is but one Church and one Chair. So too, even if they are all shepherds, we are shown but one flock which is to be fed by all the apostles in common accord. If a man does not hold fast to this oneness of Peter, does he imagine that he still holds the faith? If he deserts the Chair of Peter upon whom the Church was built, has he confidence that he is in the Church?

Which one Church, also, the Holy Spirit in the Song of Songs, speaking in Our Lord’s name, says, “My dove, my spotless one, is but one. She is the only one of her mother, elect of her that bare her” (6:9). Does he who does not hold this unity of the Church think that he holds the faith? Does he who strives against and resists the Church trust that he is in the Church, when moreover the blessed Apostle Paul teaches the same thing, and sets forth the sacrament of unity, saying, “There is one body and one spirit, one hope of your calling; one Lord, one faith, one baptism, one God”? (Ephesians 4:5)....."

-St.Cyprian of Carthage, 251 A.D.

Read More!

Saturday, August 23, 2008

I want this book so badly!

An old, out of print, hard to find book. It's called "This is The Mass", by the late Archbishop Fulton J. Sheen. I came across a copy at a used book store a few weeks ago, but when I came back, it was gone. I read a few pages and I would really like a copy, but I can't find any.
Oh well.

You know you want to hear this in person.

Sinfonia, Cantata 29, J.S.Bach
Wow. That's matter how many times I've seen this, it ever gets old.

Thursday, August 21, 2008

Where have I been you ask?

Lots of things happenned. Two weeks ago, the internet suddenly and for an unknown reason stopped working. It came back this past Sunday, But I was too tired to use it. I stayed up late Sunday night, and slept in most of monday. Tuesday, I went on the altar server's rafting trip to the Poconos (Very much fun, I'd like to do that agian, thank you.) Wednesday, I slept in late, and started playing Ratchet and Clank:Deadlocked, with my older brother. His Max Paine game came the very same day. Today, I woke up late and missed daily mass again. Lately, a black and white cat that used to belong to us named Oreo has been coming over daily to sleep on the porch, have a meal, and some attention. He does'nt want to live in the house though.
So that's were I've been, what I've done, and what happened.

Friday, August 8, 2008

Wow, I really was obsessed.

I found the chancel and sanctuary of a church I made out of cardboard,paper, and tape when I was 13. Some of the chapels still exist, but the ambulatory is gone. The apse is lopsided, and the triforium in the apse is higher tan the one i the quire, because I added the apse later, in a more decorated style. I think I'll put it back together. I have most of the pieces of the church (Nave, aisles, chapels, parts of the crossing, the west wall/rose window,etc.) and some furnishings in shoe boxes. That's what I'll do today.
Also, here's a round up of my explanation of the mass:
Part I

Part II

Part III

Part IV

Part V

I should have part VI ready by Sunday.

Thursday, August 7, 2008

Part V: the offertory.

The priest ascends the altar, just as Christ ascended Calvary. He should do so in humility and devotion. Three steps to the altar, these should remind us of what the Sanctuary is: Sanctus, sanctus, sanctus. It is holy, for the thrice holy God dwells therein, and is worshiped therein.
The missal and the veiled chalice sit o the altar, where the servers have taken them, and the priest prepares the altar.
He opens the burse, and lays down the Corporal, a square white piece of linen set on the altar, on which the host, the chalice , the ciborium, and the monstrance at benediction. It so called because on it is laid the body of Christ, Corpus Cristi.
On it he places the ciborium, which holds the consecrated hosts, the Paten, and the Chalice.
He takes the paten holding the bread, and holds it at eye level saying:

"Benedíctus es, Dómine, Deus univési, quia de tua largitáte accépimus panem, quem tibi offérimus, fructum terræ et óperis mánuum hóminum:
ex quo nobis fiet panis vitæ"

"Blessed art thou, O Lord, God of all creation,
for we have received from the goodness of thine abundance
the bread we offer unto thee,
the fruit of the earth and work of human hands:
it will become for us the bread of life."
Just as Christ gave thanks to the father in offering the bread and wine at the last supper, so does the priest follow. (Luke 22:19-20) We pay thanks to God for his abundant giving to us, he gave us of his good will, the bread we offer, and gives us Christ as our food.This bread, made by men, lying on the altar will become the bread of life, the body, blood, soul, and divinity of Jesus Christ our lord. Now, it is common food, but it will become the bread of angels, come down from heaven. Abbe Durand says of the offering of the bread:

"The Offering of the Bread and Wine.Like his divine Master, the priest takes bread in his hands and offers it to God. The bread here takes the place of the Church and Christian people, for, as bread is the nourishment and life of man, when he offers it at the altar it is as if he offered himself to God to be sacrificed to His glory, like Jesus Christ, our head. As the bread is to be changed into the body of Jesus Christ, may our hearts also be transformed into Him, till it may be " no more we who live, but Jesus Christ Who lives in us."
He places the paten on the altar.
The Offertory, or Preparation of the Offerings precedes the offering of the mass. In the offertory, the celebrating priest takes bread and wine, and offers them to God in the name of the people, praying that they will become the body and blood of Christ our God. He takes the chalice, and wipes any dust out of it with the purificator, A small linen cloth used to purify the sacred vessels, and the priest's fingers after the ablutions. He goes to the right side of the altar with the chalice, and pours wine into it. The, taking the cruet of water, he blesses it and pours a drop of water into the chalice saying:

"Grant that by the mystery of this water and wine
may we be made partakers in his divinity,
who humbled himself to share in our humanity."
This water, added to wine was originally done in the days of the persecution of the church, do dilute the wine so that it would not be strong enough to be smelt by those who persecuted the Christians.Now, it symbolizes:
1) The human and divine natures of Christ
2) Our redemption by blood ad water, flowing from the side of Christ.
3) Our share in the divine life , even as Christ shared our human life. All this is summed up in the prayer.

Taking the chalice to the center of the altar, he prays:
"Benedíctus es, Dómine, Deus univési,
quia de tua largitáte accépimus
vinum, quod tibi offérimus,
fructum vitis es óperis mánuum hóminum,
ex quo nobis fiet potus spiritális.

"Blessed art thou, O Lord, God of all creation
for we have received from the goodness of thine abundance
this wine we offer unto thee,
the fruit of the vine and work of human hands:
it will become for us the spiritual drink."
He prays that the wine, fruit of the vine, would become for us the blood of Christ, the drink of heaven, and chalice of salvation. That phrase, fruit of the vine comes from the gospel itself. (Luke 22:18) And it has a double meaning. The wine, the fruit of the vine will become the true fruit of the vine, the true spiritual drink, which is the precious blood. For who is the vine except Jesus, who said "I am the vine and you are the branches" ?
Dom Gueranguer says of the offering of the wine:
"Lord Jesus, who art the true Vine, and whose Blood, like a generous wine, has been poured forth under the pressure of the Cross! thou hast deigned to unite thy divine nature to our weak humanity"

Abbe Durand says of the offering of the wine:

"Our Lord also offered wine mixed with water. The wine represents Jesus Christ, "the true vine"; and water, the Christian people. St. Cyprian, in a letter to Cecilius, teaches this formally. This image is a vivid figure of the ineffable union of God with man wrought by the incarnation, and of that other union in the Eucharist, and again of that third union which will be consummated in glory. It is, then, the Church united with Jesus Christ, the members to their head, the bride to her bridegroom, which the priest offers to God in the oblation of the chalice.
In the drop of water, which is the figure of the faithful, what an admirable lesson of humility ! Is it not a striking image of our annihilation in the presence of the God of the Eucharist ?

While the priest offers the bread and wine to God, the offertory antiphon is chanted. Afterwards, the choir may sing a motet, or a hymn. We too, should offer ourselves to God during the offertory. We should offer him all our prayers and works and intentions, for the past week, and the week to come, and a sweet smelling savour to God.
Bowing down, the priest prays:

"In spiritu humilitatis, et in animo contrito
suscipiamur a te, Domine
et sic fiat sacraficium nostrum in conspectu tuo hodie,
ut placeat tibi, Domine."

"In a humble spirit, and with a contrite heart
may we be accepted by thee, O Lord,
and may our sacrifice so be offered to thee this day
as to be pleasing in thy sight, Lord God."
This prayer is related to to Daniel 3:39-40, part of the canticle said at Lauds in the breviary on Tuesdays. It's a good verse to read before mass, and we should pray it as part of our devotions during the offertory.It is easy to see why the early church, amidst the murder of her priests, bishops, and even the early popes, should take this verse as part of her worship during the offertory. She could have no public worship, no church buildings, and could not offer her worsip as she desired. Later, it developed into the prayer priests pray now.We should attend mass in humility, and humility should be our entire bearing while present. This is why we genuflect, and show so many signs of reverence in mass. humility is seeing yourself as you really are, and we really are sinful, and unworthy to partake of this sacrifice. This isn't Jansenism, it's the simply way of how things are.

Raising himself, he goes again to the right of the altar, and blessed incense with the sign of the cross. He incenses the gifts of God, to be offered to God, the cross, the reminder of Christ's sacrifice which is so soon to take place, and the altar itself, on which the sacrifice takes place.
Finally, the celebrant himself is incensed and then the people, the gathered body of Christ.
He washes his hands saying the second verse of Psalm 50:

"Lava me, Domine, ab iniquitate mea,
et a peccatto meo, munda me."

"Wash me thoroughly,O Lord, from my iniquity
and cleanse me of my sin."
Originally, washing the hands was necessary after handling and incensing the offerings. Now we do it in remembrance of Christ's command to St.Peter at the first mass. (John 13:8)
If we are not clean interiorly, through the grace that comes from prayer, confession of our sins, and living a life with Christ, we shall have no part of him at the banquet of the lamb
The priest pauses at the center of the altar a bit, for prayer, and then turns to the people saying:
"Oráte, fratres:
ut meum ac vestrum sacrifícium
acceptábile fiat apud Deum
Patrem omnipoténtem."
'Pray, brethren
that the sacrifice which is mine and yours
may be acceptable to God
the almighty Father.'

we respond:
" Suspiat Dominum sacrificium de manibus tuis
ad laudem et gloriam nominis suis
ad utilitatem quoque nostram
totiusque Ecclesiae suae sanctae."

"May the Lord accept the sacrifice at your hands
for the praise and glory of his name,
for our good
and the good of all his holy Church."
These are three of the ends for which the mass is offered:
1) It gives glory to God
2) It is offered for our good.
3) It is offered for the state of all of God's holy church throughout the world.
The servers close the sanctuary gates.
The celebrant prays a short prayer called the 'super oblata', or 'prayer over the offerings.'
At the end, comes the dialogue and preface. The use of a dialogue and preface is an early custom of the church, going at least back to the time of St. Hyppolytus. In it, we give thanks to God the Father before the Eucharistic offering, just as Jesus gave thanks to the Father at the last supper before the Eucharistic offering. (Luke 22:19, 1 Cor. 11:23-25)
Then , we sing the Sanctus. A majestic hymn of praise to God, based on Isaiah 6:3,Psalm 118:26, and Mark 11:10.
Then we all kneel (Rev. 5:14.) for the Canon of the mass.

Tuesday, August 5, 2008

Please leave me alone.

Sometimes I really need to be alone to think or pray. Like an hour ago, when I was in a debate, and was trying to explain free will, the fall, and whether or not Adam/Eve were informed enough to be held accountable for disobeying God (Still not sure about the last one. Answers are greatly appreciated!)
It was hard enough to try to find a logical answer, but everyone seems to want to talk to me Right Now.
"Joey! come get dinner!"
"Joey! take out the trash!'
"Joey! let's go to Walgreens and get ice cream!"
"Joey! come look at this game!"
"Joey! which is sipping and handling?"
Then my older brother comes and plays his guitar in my room. Loudly. Dad is angry because dinner is getting cold, and Mom still wants the trash out. There's no way I can research this now, let alone argue any point wen I can't think. So I decided to leave the debate till later.
The letter 'H' is also broken on my laptop. So I might omit it here and there. You have been forewarned.

On the death Penalty.

A complicated subject, but I'll give my thoughts on it.

First, I don't have an unqualified and unilateral anti-death penalty stance. Rather, think that, in consonance with scripture and tradition, it ought to be reserved only, and only ever, for those cases where the person is 1) Willfully incapable of being reformed 2) Lack of any contrary evidence for guilt, the guilt having been established in a fair and just manner 3) It is carried out painlessly, humanely 4) Reserved only for the most serious crimes.

So now, let me explain why I hold to this. First, it's because as a Catholic, I believe in the sanctity of human life. All men were created in God's image, and the sinner is no less worthy than the infant in the mother's womb. Mortal sins and moral defects do not destroy the humanity of the individual person. I feel it is inconsistent to save Jimmy's life as and infant and end it when he's an adult.

The issue of 'innocence' comes up when this is mentioned, the argument being that abortion, for example, is wrong only because the infant is innocent. The murderer is guilty. This totally avoids the unpleasant fact that 'All have sinned and fallen short of the glory of God', that "None are righteous, no, not one". This is particularly a problem for protestants, for whom there is no distinction between mortal and venial sin. Stealing a penny is as evil as hacking the bank accounts of multiple poor, single mothers. The man who is being put to death is just as guilty as the man who kills him, the man who gets angry easily and lashes out at people.

The Catholic, of course, does'nt have this issue because we have the distinction between various degrees of culpability. "All sin is sin, but not all sins are unto death". This issue of 'culpability' accounts for three of my reasons, gravity of crime, established guilt, irreformability,


Because, as I noted, not all sins are equal. Some are graver than others. Even in scripture, the punishments for which death was leveled in the old testament were grave crimes. A man is put to death for having inappropriate sexual relations, not just for impure thoughts. To kill merits death, but not anger, to steal merits death but not to covet. So it ought to be, only the gravest crimes ought to merit it. Note though, when I say that the crimes merit it, I mean it only as a sense of justice, not retribution. It is not for man to execute judgment and vengeance, because the Lord said "Vengeance is mine" and "To me belong vengeance and recompense". Therefore, if the penalty is applied, it has to be done as objectively as possible. Further, even the verse that we render an eye for an eye, a tooth for a tooth, a hand for a hand, etc, is not to be taken as a command for vengeance. It is a command for just retribution, punishment must be just and can never exceed the crime. And what crimes are the gravest? Those which cause the greatest harm and in which the perpetrator is the most solidly guilty.

Guilt assumes the free act of the will and freedom from impediment to making a decision. This is why, for example, the insane are innocent of crimes. They cannot be culpable for an act they were unable to freely choose to do or not to do. An insane man who murders has certainly done something grave, but he could not choose to murder or not to murder. There was no free act, and thus no culpability. And I would say that definitions of culpability go much further than simple sanity/insanity, and that further investigation should always be in cases where grave matter exists. Rather unhelpfully for the wholesale supporters of capital punishment, scriptural standards for establishing guilt are high. Without two witnesses seeing the event as it happened, the penalty of death was not applied.

There is also the issue of reformability. God said of the souls of sinners that he wishes not their death, but that they be converted and live. Obviously, a dead man has no way of repenting, and if he really has committed a grave sin, will thus die in his sins apart from God. Following that, I think it is only just that the only ones who,wilfully and without impediment, show obstinancy in refusing to be reformed ,perhaps even a desire to continue their evil, these are those most culpable. The man who being convicted repents, ought not to die. If God would not slay the sinner who repents, why ought we? If God who commanded the destruction of cities and peoples would relent is they would repent, why ought we say that we have a better standard of justice, that even the sinner who repents still deserves death? Repentance makes innocence, to kill the repentant is to kill the innocent. Therefore, I would say that the death penalty is totally and completely unjustifiable for someone who repents and shows remorse for their action.To kill them is murder, which the Lord definitively condemns.

So those are moral arguments. You can take them as you like. But the best argument, the one that no Christian can avoid is charity. Everthing in the Christian life HAS to be evaluted by charity. The virtue of charity, of self-sacrificial love for others, regardless of earthly recompense IS the example given to us. Remember, as much as many warmongering Christians might want to deny, Christ suffered for use to leave us an example that we might follow in his footsteps. And what did Our Lord do? When reviled, he reviled not, when suffering, he threated not. He committed himself to the one that judges justly.

Every action of a Christian must be evaluted to the law of Charity, the law which says ""If it be possible, as much as is in you, have peace with all men", the law which "Rejoices not in evil, but rejoices with the truth; Bears all things". The Christian must ALWAYS remember that Justice is tempered by Charity. Strict justice required the destruction of all humankind, since were were a 'perverse and crooked race'. Under the yoke of sin, we were at enmity with God. But what did God do? "God (who is rich in mercy) for his exceeding charity wherewith he loved us Even when we were dead in sins, has made us alive together in Christ, And has raised us up together and made us sit together in the heavenly places, through Christ Jesus. That he might show in the ages to come the abundant riches of his grace, in his bounty towards us in Christ Jesus." If this is the response of God toward the greatest offense commited against him, the cold heartedness of man toward him and man's refusal to be in communion with him, event to killing his son, the innocent one, the just one.

I would wish that people would take this in mind, and truly think of it.

Monday, August 4, 2008

I don't like it when there are no pictures on the page.

So here's one for you.

Because all the trad Catholic bloggers are.

Follow the linkie to a beautiful new church.
Thanks Archbishop Burke! You've left a fine legacy in your diocese.

Friday, August 1, 2008

Here's idiot umber one.

I was listening to Hayden's 94th symphony ("The Surprise"). Guess what happens ?I decide to take a little nap. And I got surprised. (Read: I freaked out and screamed something about Windex.)
And I knew that that part was in the symphony.

Why do I only find the weird bloggers?

I've been spending the week using my interest tags to find fellow bloggers, and I noticed two trends:
1) People who like Gregorian chant tend to be under 35, often in their teens.

2) The people who like the same things as I do are WEIRD. I've come across clinically depressed people, racists , a schismatic bishop, a radical feminist who wasn't happy with one of my comments, and even a prostitute of all people. Why do I only meet weird people?
But then again, I'm a totally contradictory obsessive compulsive person, so I have no right to speak. But it isn't just blogging. in real life, I became friends with an anti-Catholic who didn't know I was Catholic, a guy who thinks we should drop nuclear bombs on the whole middle east, a skinhead, and a guy who gets drunk daily and recites all of "Green eggs ad ham." And that's just at school.
Speaking of school, We always get a new batch of transfers every year, so Let's see how this year goes (When the time comes) at good ol' CGA.(Cedar Grove Academy.)
Also known as ICHS.

That's Racist!

That commercial with the two dancing girls who are decorating their sides of their dorm room.
Notice one girl (Girl A) is white, and the other( Girl B) black.
Notice how girl A's room is bland and mostly white, with only a few accents, while girl B's room is chock full of colors. The colored room is on one side, the white room is on the other. They separated. Segregated, if you will. RACISM!

I'm not really serious. I just like pulling the race card.