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Mark C. N. Sullivan is an editor at a Massachusetts university. He is married and the father of three children.

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He is a very shallow critic who cannot see an eternal rebel in the heart of a conservative.

The only thing necessary for the triumph of evil is for good men to do nothing.

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Irish Elk
Thursday, October 31, 2002  
The secularist tent-meeting

Has there been a more striking example than the Wellstone memorial service-turned-political rally of the phenomenon (described by Stanley Kurtz and the Public Interest) of secular liberalism as religion?

For all its stated devotion to tolerance, the secular faith in which progressive politics composes the sacraments has a fundamentalist cast that is anything but ecumenical in spirit. Imagine asking a Republican vice-president – the vice-president of the United States! – not to attend a memorial service for a late Democratic senator lest the Republican VP's presence upset the worshipers. Imagine singling out GOP dignitaries who have come to pay their respects, and urging them to join in granting the late senator's seat to a Democrat by acclamation. Altar calls, anyone?

The political wake has a long and proud tradition, but as a complement to a proper funeral. How sad that Sen. Wellstone, his wife and daughter, tragically lost, were sent to their rest with rites so partisan, and lacking in grace.

UPDATE: Andrew Sullivan and Peggy Noonan describe how the political trumped the humane at the Wellstone service. (Meantime, James Lileks takes up –and sets down – Walter Mondale.)

ALSO: TS O'Rama sounds a similar chord on the Wellstone rites: Suddenly it became clear - this is their religion!


For all your tattooed-Jesus-art requirements, this is the place. Here's something for fans of the sweet science. What do you think? The Galilee Kid over the Crusher in two rounds?


Defining deviancy down

The Oct. 28 edition of National Review features a review of Anne Hendershott's The Politics of Deviance by Carol Iannone, who writes:

A play about a man in love with a goat wins the Tony award. A prime-time TV game show features a totally naked woman throwing a little football at a large screen. A mainline Protestant church encourages homeless people to live in cardboard boxes on its steps. College students consume and create pornography for credit. Such is little more than an average week's news in the blandly decadent America of the 21st century, and, as each new wave of bizarreness unfurls, practically the only condemnation we hear is against those who dare to be offended.

Hendershott -- a professor of sociology at the University of San Diego -- explains how the act of defining deviant behavior was once seen as a staple of sociological study, and also an ordinary and necessary aspect of a sound society.

But with the rise of the "radical egalitarianism of the 1960s," and the "growing reluctance to judge the behavior of others," all discussion of deviance became "obsolete." Social scientists convinced themselves that the sociology of deviance was actually the "construction of deviance," i.e., "the imposition of selective censure by the dominant elements of society".

This has consequences. Calling a behavior deviant can help lead to some specific solution; denying the very reality of deviance precludes any remedy. The older approach respected the humanity of a troubled individual even as it addressed his dysfunctional behavior; under the new dispensation, the individual becomes a victim, his problem an open-ended claim of entitlement and the very source of his identity...

Thus we have the Homeless Guy blog, whose seemingly articulate and computer-savvy creator is able to maintain an attractive web site, but not, he says, a job or a place to live for 20 years. Why not Hobo.com? Tramp.com? How about Bum.com?

Margaret Wente of the Globe and Mail describes the soft-focus lens through which the local media has viewed a Toronto squatters' camp:

"Over at the Toronto Star, they also waxed outraged and romantic. They even printed a seven-page special section to commemorate the people of Tent City, as if they were brave soldiers or Olympic athletes. 'It took Dave, the squatter, four months to build his dream home,' the special section began. Like Tent City's other free spirits, he longed to escape the conventions of bourgeois society. His dream home was just a shack made out of rubbish, but he 'lived like a pioneer.' Proving that not all journalists are as gullible as the ones at the CBC, the story also reported that Dave's live-in girlfriend, Donna, keeps a nearby subsidized apartment with a balcony and hot running water, just in case.

"In fact, everyone at Tent City had some place else to sleep, even if it was only a city shelter. They just didn't want to sleep there. And although the shortage of cheap housing is a pressing social problem in this city, one thing I can say for sure: Tent City is not a story about homelessness in an uncaring society.

"It's a story about defining deviancy down.

"This useful phrase was coined by the formidable social thinker Daniel Patrick Moynihan to describe how a culture comes to accept and tolerate (and reward) destructive behaviour. Then we congratulate ourselves for being so compassionate."

By the time [Moynihan] summed up the disaster in his famous phrase, Iannone writes, we were casually and daily countenancing things that would have driven our ancestors to take out the pitchforks.

In Tuesday's dispiriting gubernatorial debate in Massachusetts, the candidates of the two major parties vied to prove their commitment to a woman's "right to choose." Shannon O'Brien, the "Catholic" candidate, touted her "impassioned defense" of abortion rights and her endorsements by Emily's List and NARAL, and her support for lowering from 18 to 16 the age at which a teenage girl can procure an abortion without parental notification. Mitt Romney, the candidate of conservatives, pledged to mount no challenge of any kind to the abortion license, while hailing the courage of his mother as a 1970 political candidate advocating legalized abortion.

Iannone: Conservatives as well as liberals have subscribed to what can be called the normalization of deviance. A few years ago a friend of mine had dinner with several conservative Episcopalians, higher-ups at a traditionalist Anglo-Catholic parish that preserves an all-male priesthood, and was shocked to hear them stoutly defend unisex bathrooms in college dorms. Somehow one doubts that decades ago these solid citizens sat in church mulling over the necessity for a young female college student to step out of the shower and find a strange young man standing at the toilet. Yet despite their liturgical traditionalism, they had obviously imbibed from the larger society the prevailing egalitarianism that finds sexual differentiation unacceptable.

And so, at a time the traditional family is under siege, a Catholic argument that carries weight is missing from the electoral dialogue in Massachusetts. A Catholic voice is absent from the political debate in one of the most political and Catholic states in the nation.

And Lake Street is in no position to advance a countering vision. That is one of the great shames of the clerical abuse scandal, and all the more reason for a thorough changing of the guard in the Brighton chancery.


Wednesday, October 30, 2002  
Welcome, visitors from Israpundit, which has featured Ad Orientem among its Sites of the Week. L'Chaim!


Useful idiocy as an article of faith

Left-wing activism has become as much a badge of office as the staff and the miter in Massachusetts' Episcopal Diocese, which has become more or less the Green Party at prayer. Pictures of cassocked bishops leading peace demonstrations on the steps of the cathedral in Boston are highlighted at the diocesan website, which is touting an anti-war rally Nov. 3 on Boston Common that is being mounted by the usual suspects.

Any sense that Bishop Thomas Shaw is preaching to anyone but the choir is readily dismissed by a reading of his latest column in the diocesan house organ.

As our country moves closer to war with Iraq, I am hearing an uncharacteristic unanimity in the Episcopal parishes I visit in eastern Massachusetts. I have not heard anyone say, "It's time to strike. We ought to be supporting our President." Instead, what people most often express is a sense of unease with the talk of war. There is a feeling that as a nation we ought to be more concerned about our negative image in the world. We ought to ask what we might do with our power and wealth besides wage war.

The bishop needs to get out more. The most recent Pew Forum poll has six in 10 Americans supporting military action on Iraq.

There is no doubt that the Iraqi leader is a brutal dictator who has murdered his own people and threatened the security of the Middle East. We must remember, however, that we supported and armed him during the Iraq-Iran war. And, according to the authoritative oil journal Middle East Economic Survey, as much as 90 percent of Iraq's estimated 1.8 million barrels of oil per day is purchased by U.S. Gulf coast refineries.

Our national addiction to oil continues to support Hussein's regime. That same addiction is driving the Bush administration toward war. We are part of the problem.

The "war for oil" canard is dispatched by David Frum in this column in the Telegraph. And for kicking the pins out from under the whole jerry-rigged claptrap of arguments the fellow-traveling Left raises against war in Iraq, it is hard to surpass Christopher Hitchens.

But something even more fundamental is going on in the escalating rhetoric of war in this country. What is really leading us into war is anxiety, fear, an overwhelming need for security.

Well, jetliners used as missiles to kill thousands of Americans would spark concerns for security. Same for suicide bombings, hostage-takings, intelligence of planned biological attacks... Here's one Saddam scholar's prognosis: Unless Saddam experiences ''a total personality metamorphosis,'' once he has nuclear weapons the world will face a ''100 percent'' chance of catastrophe.

But back to Bishop Shaw:

Saddam Hussein has replaced Osama bin Ladin as our demon. The Bush administration tells us that eliminating him will make us safe, and our way of life will go on as it did before September 11. Our wealth and power will be intact. We may continue to consume the world's resources at will with little consideration for poorer nations. A more likely outcome of war will be devastation to Arab nations and Israel-and more terrorism. The people of the world who have little will continue to hate us.

Yes, we're just fat, coddled children being told bedtime stories by the president. And Saddam and Osama are either phantoms of our own devising, or heroes of the poverty-stricken who have been stirred to act by our oppression.

If the twentieth century taught us anything, I would think, it was that war solves no fundamental problems. World War I was a cause of World War II, which was a cause of the Cold War, and so forth. A compelling argument has been made that strategic nonviolent action is a far stronger response to brutality and aggression than violence.

Actually, the exact opposite has been the lesson of the 20th century. Or did the Neville Chamberlain Brigade, copies of the Kellogg-Briand Pact at the ready, bring down Hitler, and a legion of origami-folding Quakers, the Iron Curtain?

War against Iraq is about us, not about changing regimes.

Our militaristic response to the tragedy of September 11 has not brought increased security, nor has our rush to curtail civil liberties and target "foreigners" for investigation and detention. War against Iraq will also fail to restore our faith in ourselves.

Faith in ourselves can only be restored by a new national inquiry into who we are and what our obligations to the world are. I believe that we are called in these days to spiritual renewal, which begins (and has already begun) in our diverse communities of faith and fellowship, not in lashing out against enemies.

The surest self-defense: Navel-gazing. After all, if they hate us, it must have been something we've done.

Let us have a national conversation on the United States as an agent of reconciliation in the world. Let us begin it by refusing to go to war against Iraq or anything else.

Let us refuse to go to war against anything. Contrast these words in time of crisis with Churchill's: "[W]e shall fight on the beaches, we shall fight on the landing grounds, we shall fight in the fields and in the streets, we shall fight in the hills; we shall never surrender…"

Or with Lincoln's: "It is for us the living rather to be dedicated here to the unfinished work which they who fought here have thus far so nobly advanced. It is rather for us to be here dedicated to the great task remaining before us--that from these honored dead we take increased devotion to that cause for which they gave the last full measure of devotion--that we here highly resolve that these dead shall not have died in vain, that this nation under God shall have a new birth of freedom, and that government of the people, by the people, for the people shall not perish from the earth."

Or with John Kennedy's: "Let every nation know, whether it wishes us well or ill, that we shall pay any price, bear any burden, meet any hardship, support any friend, oppose any foe, in order to assure the survival and the success of liberty."

To Bishop Shaw, nothing is worth fighting for.

This is moral idiocy – and for the enemies of this nation, useful idiocy.


Monday, October 28, 2002  

340: That's how many Jesuits were martyred in the course of the 20th century, from the Boxer Rebellion in June 1900 through the unrest in East Timor in September 1999.

Not 6: Six is how many Jesuits were slain by right-wing militia at the University of Central America in San Salvador in 1989. But a recent graduate of a Jesuit college or university might easily have formed the impression those six represented the sum total of Jesuit martyrs.

Because for all the annual Jesuit campus commemorations of the 1989 martyrdom of the six Salvadoran Jesuits, and all the attendant marches on the School of the Americas, correspondingly little mention is made of the other Jesuits who lost their lives over the past century.

Not to mention all the Jesuits in the previous four centuries who died for their faith, such as St. Edmund Campion and nine Jesuit companions among the 40 Martyrs of England and Wales, memorialized Oct. 25, or St. Isaac Jogues and the North American Martyrs, Oct 19.

A Google search on the word "martyrs" among the web pages of the Association of Jesuit Colleges and Universities returns but one document.

This is not to diminish the deaths of the six Salvadoran Jesuit martyrs of 1989. But to emphasize only their loss, to advance the causes of liberation theology and a blinkered, anachronistic anti-Americanism, diminishes the deaths of hundreds of other Jesuits across the globe similarly martyred under conditions of war or persecution.

It's November. On Jesuit campuses across the country, "peace-and-justice" activists of the NCR and Fr. Drinan stripe are preparing to plant crosses in the quad in memory of the 1989 martyrs, and to make the annual pilgrimage to protest the School of the Americas with the Catholic Noam Chomsky, Rev. Roy Bourgeois.

What these "peace-and-justice" activists, seemingly caught in amber during the Contra protests of the Reagan era, actually are doing is delivering an annual indictment of the United States as the source of evil in the world.

They use the six Salvadoran Jesuit martyrs of 1989 to advance a leftist political agenda that has more to do with Marxist-inspired liberation theology, vestigial Sandinista worship and contempt for the United States than it does with "social justice."

Want to plant crosses to commemorate Jesuits who gave their lives for the faith? How about laying aside a patch of grass for those killed in the Spanish Civil War? It had better be a large section of lawn, though. Here's a list:

 Fr José María Alegre Jiménez (1865-1936) 10-11-1936: Madrid
 Fr Bartolomeo Arbona Estades (1862-1936) 29-11-1936: Barcelona
 Br Juan Bautista Arconada Pérez (1890-1934) 7-10-1934: Oviedo
 Fr Ramón Artigues Sirvent (1902-1936) 20-7-1936: Lérida
 Fr Francisco Audí Cid (1872-1936) 3-11-1936: Tortosa
 Fr Jesús Ballesta Tejero (1903-1936) 8-8-1936: Madrid
 Fr Narciso Basté Basté (1866-1936) 15-10-1936: Valencia
 Fr Luis Boguñá Porta (1893-1936) 14-8-1936: Gerona
 Fr Pablo Bori Puig (1864-1936) 29-9-1936: Valencia
 Fr Constantino Carbonell Sempere (1866-1936) 23-8-1936: Gandía
 Fr Andrés Carrió Bertrán (1876-1936) 26-8-1936: Alicante
 Fr Manuel De La Cerda y De Las Bárcenas (1900-1936) 4-12-1936: Madrid
 Fr Olegario Corral García (1871-1936) 28-12-1936: Santander
 Fr Fé1ix Cots Oliveras (1895-1936) 21-7-1936: Barcelona
 Br José Ignacio Elduayen Larrañaga (1884-1936) 7-8-1936: Madrid
 Fr Juan Bautista Ferreres Boluda (1861-1936) 29-12-1936: Valencia
 Br Pedro Gelabert Amer (1887-1936) 23-8-1936: Gandía
 Fr Juan Gómez Hellín (1899-1936) 2-10-1936: Madrid
 Fr Manuel González Hernández (1889-1936) 8-9-1936: Ciudad Real
 Br Ramón Grimaltos Monllor (1861-1936) 23-8-1936: Gandia
 Fr Darío Hernández Morató (1880-1936) 29-9-1936: Valencia
 Br Domingo Ibarlucea Iregui (1906-1936) 8-9-1936: Ciudad Real
 Br Felipe Iriondo Amundaráin (1869-1936) 21-7-1936: Barcelona
 Br Lorenzo Isla Sanz (1865-1936) 25-7-1936: Tarragona
 Fr Manuel Luque Fontanilla (1856-1936) 29-8-1936: Almería
 Br José Llatje Blanc (1893-1936) 5-9-1936: Tortosa
 Br Constantino March Batlles (1877-1937) 16-3-1937: Barcelona
 Fr Emilio Martínez Martínez (1893-1934) 7-10-1934: Oviedo
 Fr Braulio Martínez Simón (1852-1936) 25-7-1936: Tarragona
 Fr Marcial Mayorga Paredes (1902-1936) 15-10-1936: Santander
 Fr Miguel Mendoza Reig (1889-1936) 1-9-1936: Barcelona
 Fr José Muñoz Albiol (1904-1936) 15-10-1936: Barcelona
 Fr Jaime Noguera Baró (1901-1937) 14-2-1937: Barcelona
 Fr Alfonso Payán Pérez (1877-1936) 30-8-1936: Almería
 Fr Manuel Peypoch Sala (1870-1936) 29-7-1936: Manresa
 Fr José Romá Carreres (1895-1936) 21-7-1936: Barcelona
 Fr Juan Rovira Oriandis (1877-1936) 3-11-1936: Tortosa
 Br Pascual Ruiz Ramírez (1901-1936) 7-8-1936: Madrid
 Br Vicente Sales Genovés (1888-1936) 29-9-1936: Valencia
 Br José Sampol Escalas (1899-1936) 27-8-1936: Barcelona
 Fr José SAnchez Oliva (1891-1936) 9-9-1936: Ciudad Real
 Br Antonio Sanchiz Martínez (1906-1936) 9-9-1936: Ciudad Real
 Fr Martín Santaella Gutiérrez (1873-1936) 26-8-1936: Almería
 Fr Alfredo Simón Colomina (1877-1936) 29-11-1936: Valencia
 Fr Tomás Sioar Fortiá (1866-1936) 19-8-1936: Gandía
 Br José Tarrats Comaposada (1876-1936) 28-9-1936: Valencia
 Fr Francisco Javier Tena Colom (1863-1936) 26-8-1936: Barcelona
 Fr Ricardo Tena Montero De Espinosa (1877- 1936) 8-9-1936: Azuaga
 Fr Joaquín María Valentí De Marti (1884- 1936) 14-8-1936: Gerona
 Fr Ignacio de Velasco Nieto (1890-1936) 24-9-1936: Madrid
 Fr José Vergés De Trias (1898-1936) 14-8-1936: Gerona
 Fr Demetrio Zurbitu Recalde (1886-1936) 20-10-1936: Barcelona

 Br Catarino Abril Marín (1881-1936) 23-8-1936: Valencia
 Fr Ismael Accensi Cid (1894-1936) 3-8-1936: Tortosa
 Br Diego Aguilera (1912-1938) 29-3-1938: Córdoba
 Br Juan Bautista Andrada Salvador (1898-1936) 25-10-1936: Valencia
 Fr José del Arco (1889-1936) 27-12-1936: Santander
 Br José Manuel Arín Dorronsoro (1887-1936) 26-11-1936: Madrid
 Fr Angel Armiñana Silvestre (1902-1936) 3-10-1936: Alicante
 Fr Leopoldo Barba Caballero (1870-1936) 18-9-1936: Málaga
 Fr Juan ● Fr Beamonte García (1895-1936) 7-8-1936: Valencia
 Fr Manuel Berdún (1879-1937) 15-3-1937: Barcelona
 Fr Paulino Bertrán Sempere (1874-1936) 10-8-1936: Manresa
 Br Tomás Boix Almiñana (1866-1936) 24-8-1936: Barcelona
 Fr Baldomero Bonilla Fernández (1865-1936) 15-10-1936: Murcia
 Fr Ignacio Casanovas Camprubí (1865-1936) 21-8-1936: Barcelona
 Br Ramón Codina Alier (1869-1936) 25-7-1936: Barcelona
 Br José Conti Sala (1865-1936) 9-8-1936: Valencia
 Br Manuel Darder Palahi (1862-1936) 15-10-1936: Valencia
 Br Agustín Díaz y Zapata (1869-1936) 27-7-1936: Toledo
 Br José Fabregat Verdú (1893-1936) 8-9-1936: Valencia
 Fr Agustín Fernández Hernández (1904-1936) 14-8-1936: Gijón
 Fr Manuel Fernández Díaz-Masa (1904-1936) 30-11-1936: Madrid
 Fr José F. Ferragut Sbert (1889-1936) 21-9-1936: Barcelona
 Br Vicente Fonfría Geri (1891-1936) 29-10-1936: Valencia
 Br Tomás Frasno Peñarrocha (1866-1936) 29-7-1936: Barcelona
 Fr Narciso Fuentes Ruiz-Delgado (1875- 1936) 12-8-1936: Valencia
 Br José Gabarrón Pérez (1868-1936) 13-10-1936: Málaga
 Br José García Molina (1911-1936) 14-8-1936: Málaga
 Fr Zacarías García Villada (1879-1936) 1-10-1936: Madrid
 Fr Nemesio Gonzalez Alonso (1866-1936) 14-8-1936: Gijdn
 Fr Luis Gordillo Díaz (1898-1936) 23-7-1936: Málaga
 Fr Vicente Guimerá Roca (1869-1936) 30-9-1936: Valencia
 Fr Joaquín Hernández López (1881-1936) 7-8-1936: Madrid
 Br Antonio Jiménez Blázquez (1885-1936) 13-10-1936: Málaga
 Fr José Juan Martínez (1867-1936) 26-9-1936: Valencia
 Fr Martín Juste García (1863-1936) 27-7-1936: Toledo
 Fr Florentino Laria Sampedro (1866-1936) 5-11-1936: Madrid
 Fr Manuel de Larragan Alfaro (1884-1936) 15-10-1936: Madrid
 Fr Manuel Mañes Bosch (1887-1936) 25-7-1936: Barcelona
 Fr Juan Martínez García (1902-1936) 19-9-1936: Madrid
 Fr Jesús Martínez Hernández (1903-1936) 7-11-1936: Madrid
 Fr Valentino Mayordomo González (1878- 1937) 18-3-1937: Santander
 Br José Mendizdbal Tolosa (1881-1937) 18-5-1937: Santander
 Br Angel Mercader Vatero (1889-1936) 14-8-1936: Valencia
 Fr Pedro Miró De Mesa (1901-1936) 20-11-1936: Barcelona
 Fr Ramón Molina (1904-1938) 19-3-1938 Andorra
 Br Carlos Moncho Montaner (1868-1936) 3-9-1936: Tortosa
 Fr Jesús Montero Carrión (1887-1936) 10-8-1936: Madrid
 Fr Inocencio Muñoz Aguilera (1895-1936) 14-8-1936: Málaga
 Br Joaquín Noguera Martínez (1873-1936) 22-8-1936: Madrid
 Mr José Oortiz Calvo (1911-1936) 8-11-1936: Madrid
 Fr José Palacio Molina (1865-1936) 19-8-1936: Alcalahí

 Br Félix Palacios (1877-1936) 27-7-1936: Toledo
 Fr Miguel Pardo De Donlebún (1881-1936) 9-8-1936: Barcelona
 Fr Luis Perera Canogia (1865-1936) 4-10-1936: Valencia
 Fr José Pedromingo Cotayna (1904-1936) 6-12-1936: Guadalajara
 Br José Rallo Pascual (1863-1936) 24-8-1936: Barcelona
 Fr José Rodríguez De La Torre (1877-1936) 5-10-1936: Málaga
 Mr Gregorio Ruiz Rodríguez (1911-1936) 5-9-1936: Santander
 Fr José Ruiz Goyo (1897-1936) 5-9-1936: Santander
 Fr José Ruiz Pimentel (1887-1936) 15-10-1936: Málaga
 Mr Nicolás Serrano Fernández (1910-1936) 5-9-1936: Santander
 Br José Serres Borrás (1890-1936) 17-9-1936: Barcelona
 Br José Simón Cascales (1873-19:36) 14-8-1936: Valencia
 Fr Pedro Trullás Claramunt (1867-1936) 25-7-1936: Barcelona
 Br José María Valiente Trigueros (1894-1936) 8-11-1936: Madrid
 Fr Ramón Vendrell Vives (1865-1936) 7-8-1936: Tarragona
 Br Ignacio Vila March (1858-1936) 26-9-1936: Barcelona
 Fr José María Vives Castellet (1882-1936) 3-10-1936: Tarragona
 Br Francisco Vives Masses (1898-1936) 15-9-1936: Barcelona
 Fr José Antonio Yáñez González (1870-1936) 14-8-1936: Gijón

Of course, the Spanish Jesuits – many on the side of Franco – killed in the 1930s by the anti-clerical Left don't fit conveniently into the "peace and justice" morality play. Neither do those who died at the hands of Communists in Europe and Asia. Here's a list of them:

 Fr Daniel Dajani (1906-1946) 4-3-1946: Albania
 Fr Giovanni Fausti (1899-1946) 4-3-1946: Albania
 Br Gjon Pantaljia (1887-1947) 31-1--1947: Albania
 Fr Ndoc (Antonio) Saraci (1875-1947) 3-5-1947: Albania
 Fr Zef Saraci (1884-1954) 16-9-1954: Albania
 Fr Antonín Zgarbíik (1913-1965) 22-1-1965: Bohemia
 Mr Izidor Bistrovic (1949-1969) 4-12-1969: Croatia
 Fr Franjo Bortas (1903-1947) 7-6-1947: Croatia
 Fr Josip Müller (1893-1945) 28-11-1945: Croatia
 Fr Peter Perica (1881-1944) 25-10-1944: Croatia
 Fr Joze Bric (1907-1945) 21-11-1945: Slovenia
 Bp Lambert Ehrlich (1878-1942) 26-5-1942: Slovenia
 Fr Martin Meglik (1871-1945) 22-2-1945: Slovenia
 Fr Benjamin Jakab (1903-1950) 5-7-1950: Hungary
 Fr Ferenc Kajdi (1884- 1945?) ?-?-1945: Hungary
 Fr Antal Laskay (1909-1945?) ?-?-1945?
 Fr Józef Vid (1898-1952) 18-10-1952: Hungary
 Fr Benediktas Andruska (1884-1951) ?-?-1941: Lithuania
 Fr Joannes Peeperkorn (1898-1947?) ?-?-1947: Lithuania
 Fr Jazeps Püdans (1903-1942) 15-6-1942: Lithuania
 Fr Tadeusz Chabrowski (1909-1941) 9-1-1941: Poland
 Fr Alfons Czyzewski (1897-1953) 16-11-1953: Poland
 Br Kajetan Górski (1879-1942) ?-?-1942: Poland
 Fr Antoni Grzybowski (1904-1943) 20-10-1943: Poland
 Fr Jan Haniewski (1873-1942) ?-2-1942: Poland
 Br Jakub Jagusz (1872-1942) ?-7-1942: Poland
 Fr Kazimierz Konopka (1879-1941) 26-6-1941: Poland
 Fr Mariusz Skibniewski (1881-1939) 28-9-1939: Poland
 Fr Stanislaw Wnek (1859-1944) 27-4-1944: Poland
 Fr Waclaw Zaborowski (1904-1958) 14-5-1958: Poland
 Fr Cornel Chira (1904-1953) 20-8-1953: Romania
 Mr Xavier Robert (1912-?) ?-?-?: China
 Fr Beda Chang (Tsan-) Cheng-Min (1905-1951) 11-11-1951: China
 Fr Joseph Hu Shih-Chao (1908-?) ?-?-?: China
 Fr Andrés Li Shu-Pei (1913-?) ?-?-?: China
 Fr Peter T'Ang Kai-Shan (1906-1957) ?-?-1957: China
 Fr Louis Téteau (1874-1952) 4-5-1952: China
 Fr Antony Wang Che(1912-1953) 17-9-1953: China
 Br Laurentius Chin Lin-Shen (1915-?) ?-?-?: China
 Fr Chrysostomus Chang Szu-Ch'Ien (1910-1961?) ?-?-1961?: China
 Fr Petrus Chang Chin-Shan (1903-1967) ?-?-1967: China
 Fr Stephanus Chou Ju-Yüe (1901-1966?) ?-?-1966?: China
 Fr Aloysius Chu Kuang-Chung (1906-1968) ?-?-1968: China
 Fr Paulus Cheng Wei-Hsien (1903-1970?) ?-?-1970? : China
 Fr Francis-Xavier Chu Shu-Teh (1913-1983) 28-12-1983: China
 Fr Josephus Hsü Ching-Fang (1914-?) ?-?-?: China
 Br Laurentius Ts'Ao Chin-Teh (1893-?) China

Any accounting of Jesuit martyrs of the 20th century would note the scores who died in Dachau and Auschwitz and other Nazi concentration camps.

And a balanced and thorough list would note among the victims of dictatorial regimes not only the six who tragically gave their lives in El Salvador in 1989, but dozens slain across Central and South America, Africa, the Middle East and Asia. Here's a list:

 Fr Luis Espinal Camps (1932-1980) 22-3-1980: Bolivia
 Fr João Bosco Penido Burnier (1917-1976) 12-10-1976: Brazil
 Br Vicente Cañas Costa (1939-1987) 6-4-1987: Brazil
 Fr Sergio Restrepo Jaramillo (1939-1989) 1-6-1989: Colombia
 Fr Rutilio Grande García (1928-1977) 12-3-1977: El Salvador
 Fr Ignacio Ellacuría Beascoechea (1930-1989) 16-11-1989: El Salvador
 Fr Amando López Quintana (1936-1989) 16-11-1989: El Salvador
 Fr Joaquín López y López (1918-1989) 16-11-1989: El Salvador
 Fr Ignacio Martín Baró (1942-1989) 16-11-1989: El Salvador
 Fr Segundo Montes Mozo (1933-1989) 16-11-1989: El Salvador
 Fr Juan Ramón Moreno Pardo (1933-1989) 16-11-1989: El Salvador
 Fr Carlos Pérez Alonso (1936-1981?) 2-8-1981?: Guatemala
 Fr Bernard Darke (1925-1979) 14-7-1979: Guyana
 Fr Godofredo Atingal (1922-1981) 13-4-1981: Philippines
 Br Nicolas De Glos (1911-1976) 23-5-1976: Chad
 Br Alfredo Pérez Lobato (1937-1973) 1-12-1973: Chad
 Br John Joseph Conway (1920-1977) 6-2-1977: Zimbabwe
 Fr Desmond Donovan (1927-1978?) 15?-1?-1978? : Zimbabwe
 Br Bernhard Lisson (1909-1978) 27-6-1978: Zimbabwe
 Fr Gerhard Pieper (1940-1978) 26-12-1978: Zimbabwe
 Fr Gregor Richert (1930-1978) 27-6-1978: Zimbabwe
 Fr Christopher Shepherd-Smith (1943-1977) 6-2-1977: Zimbabwe
 Fr Martin Thomas (1932-1977) 6-2-1977: Zimbabwe
 Fr Silvio Alvés Moreira (1941-1985) 30-10-1985: Mozambique
 Fr João de Deus Gonçalves Kamtedza (1930-1985) 30-10-1985: Mozambique
 Fr Raymond A. Adams (1935-1989) 12-11-1989: Ghana
 Fr Jean de Boisséson (1910-1988) 29-5-1988: Madagascar
 Fr Patrick Gahizi (1946-1994) 7-4-1994: Rwanda
 Fr Chrysologue Mahame (1927-1994) 7-4-1994: Rwanda
 Fr Innocent Rutagambwa (1948-1994) 7-4-1994: Rwanda
 Bp Christophe Munzihirwa Mwene Ngabo (1926-1996) 29-10-1996: Zaire
 Fr Alban De Jerphanion (1901-1976) 14-3-1976: Lebanon
 Fr Louis Dumas (1901-1975) 25-10-1975: Lebanon
 Fr Nicolas Kluiters (1940-1985) 14-3-1985: Lebanon
 Fr André Masse (1940-1987) 24-9-1987: Lebanon
 Mr Richard Michael Fernando (1970-1996) 17-10-1996: Cambodia
 Fr Thomas Anchanikal (1951-1997) 27-10-1997: India
 Fr Thomas E. Gafney (1932-1997) 14-12-1997: India
 Fr Mathew Mannaparambil (1938-1980) 7-3-1980: India
 Fr Francis Louis Martinsek (1912-1979) 24-3-1979: India
 Fr Herman Rasschaert (1922-1964) 24-3-1964: India
 Fr Eugene John Hebert (1923-1990) 15-8-1990: Sri Lanka
 Fr Tarcisio Dewanto 1965-1999 9-9-99: Dili, East Timor
 Fr Karl Albrecht 1929-1999 11-9-99: East Timor

We should remember all the Jesuits who have died, in the words of Company magazine, "for love of God and their fellow human beings." The sacrifice of so many should not be forgotten so ideologues of the Left can exploit the memories of a few.


Friday, October 25, 2002  
Fowl play from the Democrats

Democratic rooster – or chickenhawk?

President Franklin Delano Roosevelt led the United States into the Second World War after the nation came under unprovoked attack in 1941. But because, as a young man, he had not deferred his Harvard education to serve with the American military in the Boxer Rebellion or in the Philippines, the greatest of Democratic presidents was, in fact, a chickenhawk.

The same could be said of another celebrated Democratic president, Woodrow Wilson, who led the United States into the First World War on a "crusade for democracy," but who in his younger years didn't volunteer for the Indian Wars.

Yes, they were chickenhawks – at least according to the political classification system used by today's purported stewards of the Jeffersonian-Jacksonian tradition at Democrats.com, who gleefully hang the term on anyone in the opposing party who did not serve in the military but today supports an armed defense against terror.

Such is what passes today for the "loyal" opposition. If the partisan Copperheads who tried to undermine the Union in the Civil War were transported to the present day, this would be their web site. If you respect the keen political savvy of Michael Moore or Barbra Streisand, you'll lap it up with a spoon.

But for many of the rest of us, Democrats.com offers further proof of what's now called the Dowd Rule: No one who thinks George W. Bush is stupid is as smart as George W. Bush.


Thursday, October 24, 2002  

'The heart underneath the Spoked B'

The Last Hurrah at Boston Garden

The "quintessential Boston Bruin," Terry O'Reilly, has his Number 24 raised to the rafters at the Vault on Causeway Street tonight. Fine tribute coverage at the Globe, at the Herald and at the Bruins site. Here's a tally of his greatest brawls. Writes the Globe's incomparable hockey writer Kevin Paul Dupont:

OK, we are not talking about a league posterboy here for manners and sportsmanship (witness his 2,430 career penalty minutes). But that's just the point. It is what everyone here in the Hub of Hockey loved about the guy. He was what he was: a challenged skater with very limited playing skills who mixed equal and bountiful parts work ethic and passion to become the sport's orneriest, most steel-willed, nail-spittin', upper-cuttin' winger of his time.

None of that got his name on the Stanley Cup or won him a Hart Trophy, a scoring championship or so much as an afternoon tea at the Ritz (O'Reilly and fine china?), but it endeared him to a generation of blue-collar hockey fans who saw a lot of themselves in him, and only dreamed that they saw a lot of him in themselves.

There are no statistics that truly reflect caring, will, determination, practice, hard work, loyalty, stubborness or, maybe the biggest one of all, pain inflicted from defeat.

O'Reilly wasn't about the numbers. He was about the trying, caring, making the moment, every moment, matter. To appreciate that, you had to see him play, game to game, shift to shift, the heart underneath that spoked-B as obvious as the number on his back. Tonight's salute is not to greatness, but rather a celebration of turning the ordinary into something great.


How sweet the sound: Bagpiper John at The Inn at the End of World notes his services are in demand at funerals to play Amazing Grace – but only Amazing Grace. "It's such a shame," he writes. "There are all those beautiful traditional tunes written precisely for pipes to play at funerals and all anyone ever wants is A/G."

An aside to Angel fan John: Rally monkeys and Thunder Sticks are well and good, but the Angels once had one of the most distinctive toppers in baseball. Bring back the Halo!


Al Qaeda playbook – Chechen-style: If the developing pattern holds, hundreds more Americans or Europeans may be hostages or victims of another suicidal jihadist attack along the lines of the Moscow event. Like the jihadists' 1994 plans to crash planes into the Eiffel Tower or CIA headquarters, the Moscow-theater attack may portend the shape of looming evil. More


Duck, duck, noose: The sniper's cryptic reference to "a duck with his head in a noose" apparently stems from a Cherokee folk tale about a rabbit hunting for prey who wasn't as clever as he thought. Another telling is here.

Now the Rabbit did not have anywhere near the ability in water that the Otter had. And it was a struggle for him to reach the ducks un-noticed, but he managed to do so and came up among the remaining six ducks. He quickly fastened his noose around the neck of the closest duck. Startled, the duck began to struggle to get away and finally took of on his wings and dragged the Rabbit out of the water after him...

He held on to the noose and was taken high into the air. Higher and higher he went. All of a sudden, he lost his grip on the noose and down he fell into the middle of a old hollow Sycamore tree with out a hole in the bottom to get out. Now the Rabbit was in a fix. He stayed in there so long that he had to start eating his own fur, as rabbits still do to this day when they are starved.

Looks like the rabbit -- or Moose -- in this case may have the last laugh. Here's hoping.


Sniper-case investigators search alleged training camp for Islamic militants in Alabama:

From Fox News: The FBI is searching a location near Marion, Ala., known as Camp Ground Zero USA — a place known to train militia groups. FBI sources told Fox News "they are not at liberty to comment" on the investigation and cannot confirm or deny their agents are investigating Camp Ground Zero USA.

See this July 2002 report by ABC News on Camp Ground Zero, Preparing for Jihad…in Alabama.

Meantime, this: Iraqis linked to Oklahoma atrocity.


Wednesday, October 23, 2002  
Wonder what's playing today at Oregon Catholic Press?

Just click on OCP Radio and give a listen.

Come, Holy Zamfir!

Odds are, about halfway through "Holy is the Temple," you're going to be ready for a departure. Here's a rousing one in the form of an essay by Michael Inman, "A Liturgical Guitarist Reformed":

About a week before I sat down to write this I was cleaning out a bookshelf and came across my old "Glory & Praise" hymnals. I thought to myself, "I'm not just going to throw these away. No, this hideous collection of Barney Songs deserves to be burned!" Actually, I apologize to the Barney Show. Their songs are much better. So we rolled the 55 gallon drum away from the garage, tossed in the old Christmas tree that was laying behind the garage, and set 'er ablaze. Tearing off a few pages at a time Janet and I read aloud the song titles with exaggerated groans and expressions of disgust as we threw them in to their proper fate. The "performance notes" were the funniest. One suggested that, for "movement", the performing ensemble could circle the altar holding hands during the singing of a particular "Lamb of God". While singing the notes gave a suggested dance step involving sliding one foot and bringing the other over in slow steps while the group circled round the altar. It was truly a pleasure watching the purging fire consume the scourge of Catholic hymnody worldwide…

More at Sensum Plebis.


A Marine speaks

Mass for Marine pilots, Okinawa

...After the fourth or fifth day of combat came Sunday. A flat field was found next to the sea, surrounded by green jungled hills. Hundreds of dirty men knelt down. Mud was on their clothes, perhaps blood on their hands. The musty smell of the tropics and of the dead was in the breeze. Everything was rotten. Many men had seen close friends killed. All had gone through too much already. Some leaned on their rifles. Others had laid their pieces carefully beside them. Most of the mussed heads were bowed, but when they lifted, they saw what they needed to see and felt inside what they needed to feel. The only clean thing on the island was the sparkling purity of the altar cloth and chasuble. They knew that despite their experience, the part of their soul that was God's would be white. That was comfort.

Perhaps the simile is sacrilegious, but that first Mass seemed more like taking a bath than anything else. For those who had not been able to go to confession, this was our first real strong contact with the living God. Living, that was it. God was alive, had been alive, would be alive, alive, alive…

-- From "A Marine Speaks," by an unnamed veteran of Guadalcanal, for the Advent Papers, Church of the Advent, Boston


Tuesday, October 22, 2002  
The Traditional Mass returns to Lourdes

At 5.30am the candlelit procession made its way through the cold and deserted streets towards the Grotto of Massabielle for an event, at least officially, unprecedented since the Second Vatican Council: the celebration of the traditional Latin Mass at Lourdes... More from the Latin Mass Society.


Any blog about bagpipes is bound to be good…

And The Inn at the End of the World doesn't disappoint. Throw in Chesterton, liturgical Latin and Scottish reels, and you've got a most convivial cyber-stop. Slainte!


Sympathy for the sniper?

Rush Limbaugh today raised a good point: Where is the sympathy for the Washington sniper? After all, we must have done something to make him to shoot at us. Our society must be to blame for his murderous spree. What are the root causes of his rage? Won't police efforts to stop him make him angry and trigger more attacks?

Surely it can't be long before campus protesters and the Hollywood Left are heard in chorus: Not in our name, Chief Moose! Not in our name!


Thursday, October 17, 2002  
On Beyond the Fringe in Northern Va.

Not headed for Arlington

He's St. Blog's favorite anti-Semitic geocentrist foil. And this weekend, Robert Sungenis of Catholic Apologetics International is scheduled to be one of the headliners at the Second International Catholic Conference on Creation, October 18-20 at St. Agnes Parish Center in Arlington, Va.

Other speakers decrying dinosaurs and Darwin at the conference are to include the host Kolbe Center's spiritual advisor, Rev. Robert Ruskamp, chaplain of Christendom College in Front Royal, Va., and Bishop Roman Danylak, who has testified to being present at a miracle in which the Host was changed to living flesh and blood.

Christendom College's theology chairman, William Marshner, also has been billed as a speaker in this invitation to the conference.

A flavor of the proceedings may be gained from this account of last year's conference, which featured presentations on the prevalence of "atheists, the sexually immoral, abortion supporters, social Darwinists, racists, and violators of each of the Commandments" among defenders of evolutionary theory, as well as on the significance of the "historical fact of Eve's creation from Adam's side."

Maybe it's something they put in the water down there, but Catholic creationist mecca Christendom College has come under attack from the Lyndon LaRouche movement for being a hotbed of Carlists, ultra-orthodox Spanish monarchists who supported General Franco.

Where's Fr. Sibley when you need him?

There's a reason diplomats consider the Washington D.C. area a tropical posting. An air remains there of the fever swamp.

And not just in the climate.


Wednesday, October 16, 2002  
Release your inner Klappermeister

Go here to virtually ring Harvard's Lowell House bells, originally from St. Danilov Monastery in Moscow.


Classicist was a Harvard man of the old school: Mason Hammond, a retired Harvard professor of Latin language and Roman history who died four months shy of his 100th birthday, attended morning chapel services for more than 70 years, and as an Army officer in the Second World War helped recover priceless art from the Nazis.

During World War II, Professor Hammond served as monument, fine arts and archives officer with Air Force Intelligence in Sicily, Italy, and Germany. Driving a small, decrepit car dubbed ''Hammond's Peril'' from battlefield to battlefield, he was among a cadre of art experts and intelligence agents credited with rescuing and cataloging vast amounts of Western classic art stolen and hidden by the Nazis.

At one point, he was in charge of the famous bust of Queen Nefertiti and other treasures of the Kaiser Friedrich Museum. But he said he could not enjoy the company of these masterpieces because they were always crated.

On another of his missions, he advised General George Patton in his attempts to minimize damage to monuments from US bombs or artillery.

He received three honors for his work during the war, the Croix de la Legion d'Honneur from the French government in 1947, the Cabaliere Ufficiale dell'Ordine al Merito della Republica Italiana, from the Italian government in 1959, and the Bronze Star from the US government in 1945.

A Harvard Gazette article on a fellow worshiper notes a row of pews in Harvard's Appleton Chapel has been named for Prof. Hammond, who attended morning services there for more than 70 years.

Prof. Hammond also wrote the history of the Lowell House bells (see above).

Classicist, college house-master, gifted teacher, decorated war hero, man of faith: A noble epitaph, for a Harvard man, or anyone.


Ivy Leaguers at war

Battle flag, the Harvard Regiment

Patriotism and national service were once glorified on the Ivy League campus. Of the 20th Massachusetts Volunteers, the "Harvard Regiment," with which Oliver Wendell Holmes served with distinction in the Civil War, it was said: "The Twentieth has no poetry in a fight."

See also this tribute to Andover alumni lost in the Great War. A passage by George Eliot heads the Roll of Honor commemorating:

Those immortal dead who live again
In minds made better by their presence:
Live in pulses stirred to generosity,
In deeds of daring rectitude, in scorn
For miserable aims that end with self.


Restoring faith in collegiate sanity:

While anti-war academicians circulate a petition decrying US efforts to defend itself, hope springs anew in the ability of Generations X and Y to see through the tired Sixties radicalism of their teachers. Visit this page carrying a column of predictable left-wing cant by a Yale history professor and click on the comments section, in which the author is administered a deft Fisking the likes of which she'd never have received in the Faculty Club. Here's to Andrew Sullivan (third item) and the Internet!


Tuesday, October 15, 2002  
'Australia's September 11th'

That's how Andrew Sullivan describes this past weekend's horrific terrorist attack in Bali.

This sad story is evocative of the losses of 9.11, as are many in these galleries of coverage from the Sydney Morning Herald and The Age.

Visit Tim Blair for updated news and commentary. The Australian Embassy offers links to media coverage and has established a condolence book at its Washington offices.

Vigil photos.


Terrorism in early America

The fledgling United States' campaign against the Barbary Pirates, recalled in the Marine Hymn and in the legacy of the USS Constitution, offers a noteworthy historical backdrop to the modern-day struggle against the pirates' cutthroat heirs.

One wonders what today's peace-and-justice mavens would say were they transported to the early 19th century. Would they seek the root causes of the pirates' discontents? Would they suggest the looted ships had it coming? Would they counsel against fighting back, urging instead the payment of tribute?

Now consider the Barbary Pirates were with us today – and were able to strike far beyond the shores of Tripoli, not with scimitars but with weapons of mass death.

Would a restrained response be the order of the day? How about walking around for a bit inside the pirates' curly-toed slippers to understand why they hate us? Perhaps an apology for having affronted the pirates, or the odd bit of ransom? Or an appeal to an international law-of-the-sea tribunal?


The Appeasement Party at prayer: Andrew Roberts writes in The Telegraph of the 1930s echoes emanating from the C of E:

For all their doctorates and years in theology colleges contemplating the nature of sin, these bishops cannot see true evil when it stands up fully-mustachioed and combat-jacketed, as Saddam has night after night on their television screens, complete with rocket launcher hoisted on to his shoulder.

Once this war is over, the thanksgiving service for the victory should not be held in Westminster Abbey or St Paul's Cathedral, as on all previous occasions, but at the Cenotaph, without any bishops present. "Our Glorious Dead" would understand.

Meantime, at Catholic Light, Eric Johnson views Pax Christi in the light of Bali and finds its message not only wanting, but dangerous.


Sunday, October 13, 2002  
On Wisconsin:

A clerihew compelled by the scoreboard in Foxboro.

The pride of the cheeseheads is Favrelous;
His way with a pigskin is mavrelous.
Raised lagers toast the Pack as first.
The Patriots? From brat to wurst.

Cheers, Dave!


Friday, October 11, 2002  
A President Worthy of the Prize

Peace is generally good in itself, but it is never the highest good unless it comes as the handmaid of righteousness; and it becomes a very evil thing if it serves merely as a mask for cowardice and sloth, or as an instrument to further the ends of despotism or anarchy. We despise and abhor the bully, the brawler, the oppressor, whether in private or public life, but we despise no less the coward and the voluptuary. No man is worth calling a man who will not fight rather than submit to infamy or see those that are dear to him suffer wrong. No nation deserves to exist if it permits itself to lose the stern and virile virtues; and this without regard to whether the loss is due to the growth of a heartless and all-absorbing commercialism, to prolonged indulgence in luxury and soft, effortless ease, or to the deification of a warped and twisted sentimentality.

Moreover, and above all, let us remember that words count only when they give expression to deeds, or are to be translated into them. The leaders of the Red Terror prattled of peace while they steeped their hands in the blood of the innocent; and many a tyrant has called it peace when he has scourged honest protest into silence. Our words must be judged by our deeds; and in striving for a lofty ideal we must use practical methods; and if we cannot attain all at one leap, we must advance towards it step by step, reasonably content so long as we do actually make some progress in the right direction.

-- Theodore Roosevelt, 26th President of the United States, Nobel Peace Prize Acceptance Speech, May 10, 1910


Remembering Good Pope John, Latin liturgist

Time Man of the Year, 1962

Pope John XXIII, who convened the Second Vatican Council 40 years ago today, was a defender of Latin, a point not emphasized by many who invoke his spirit and that of the council he summoned.

[T]he Catholic Church has a dignity far surpassing that of every merely human society, for it was founded by Christ the Lord. It is altogether fitting, therefore, that the language it uses should be noble, majestic, and non-vernacular.

In addition, the Latin language "can be called truly catholic." It has been consecrated through constant use by the Apostolic See, the mother and teacher of all Churches, and must be esteemed "a treasure ... of incomparable worth." It is a general passport to the proper understanding of the Christian writers of antiquity and the documents of the Church's teaching. It is also a most effective bond, binding the Church of today with that of the past and of the future in wonderful continuity.

-- Pope John XXIII, Veterum Sapientia, On the Promotion of the Study of Latin, 1962

Had Good Pope John lived longer, what shape might liturgical reform have taken?

The Missal of John XXIII (1962)

Almost a Saint: Pope John XXIII (St. Anthony Messenger, 1996)


Thursday, October 10, 2002  
No way, St. Jose

In The Spectator, a former follower of Opus Dei reflects on the mixed credentials for sainthood of its founder, the Marques de Peralta.

So there he is, then; up there with Christina the Astonishing, who flew out of her coffin and perched in the rafters of the church during her funeral, and Walstan of Bawburgh, princely pauper and patron of severed private parts: Monsignor Josemaria Escriva de Balaguer, founder of the secretive and ultra-conservative movement Opus Dei, is a saint. No one claiming to be a Catholic can deny it: the Pope declared it publicly in St Peter’s Square last Sunday. But not all Catholics share the happiness of the 300,000 people who were present, or the delight of the movement’s 84,000 members worldwide. Some see Opus Dei as sinister, and consider it a cynically manipulative cult.

My own experience doesn’t lead me quite to that conclusion, but I have no plans to put a prayer card with Escriva’s picture on it in my missal. He’s not my kind of hero. There are too many stories about his bad temper and bullying to make me warm to him, and too many of his admirers are fanatics, albeit with the best intentions. It is claimed, for example, that he once completely lost it when told that a senior female member had broken the rules by putting uncensored letters in the post. ‘Draw up her skirts, tear down her panties and beat her on the bum!’ he is said to have shouted. ‘On the bum! Until she talks. Make her talk!’ The tribunal that weighed up his sanctity was not told that story because the woman who aroused his anger and several other prominent critics of Escriva weren’t invited to give evidence.

(Via Amy Welborn)


The 'Agatha Christie Indult'

In 1971 more than 50 of Britain's most distinguished scholars, writers, historians and artists, only a handful of them Catholic, directed an appeal to Pope Paul VI to protect the old Latin Mass from extinction. The story is told that Paul VI was unmoved by the list of British intellectuals who had signed the petition until he came to the name of his favorite mystery-writer: "Agatha Christie!" he exclaimed, and signed the dispensation allowing continued public celebration of the Old Mass in England and Wales. Hence the "Agatha Christie Indult."

The eloquent appeal and its signatories:

If some senseless decree were to order the total or partial destruction of basilicas or cathedrals, then obviously it would be the educated - whatever their personal beliefs - who would rise up in horror to oppose such a possibility. Now the fact is that basilicas and cathedrals were built so as to celebrate a rite which, until a few months ago, constituted a living tradition. We are referring to the Roman Catholic Mass. Yet, according to the latest information in Rome, there is a plan to obliterate that Mass by the end of the current year. One of the axioms of contemporary publicity, religious as well as secular, is that modern man in general, and intellectuals in particular, have become intolerant of all forms of tradition and are anxious to suppress them and put something else in their place. But, like many other affirmations of our publicity machines, this axiom is false. Today, as in times gone by, educated people are in the vanguard where recognition of the value of tradition is concerned, and are the first to raise the alarm when it is threatened. We are not at this moment considering the religious or spiritual experience of millions of individuals. The rite in question, in its magnificent Latin text, has also inspired a host of priceless achievements in the arts - not only mystical works, but works by poets, philosophers, musicians, architects, painters and sculptors in all countries and epochs. Thus, it belongs to universal culture as well as to churchmen and formal Christians. In the materialistic and technocratic civilisation that is increasingly threatening the life of mind and spirit in its original creative expression - the word - it seems particularly inhuman to deprive man of word-forms in one of their most grandiose manifestations. The signatories of this appeal, which is entirely ecumenical and non-political, have been drawn from every branch of modern culture in Europe and elsewhere. They wish to call to the attention of the Holy See, the appalling responsibility it would incur in the history of the human spirit were it to refuse to allow the Traditional Mass to survive, even though this survival took place side by side with other liturgical reforms. Signed: Harold Acton, Vladimir Ashkenazy, John Bayley, Lennox Berkeley, Maurice Bowra, Agatha Christie, Kenneth Clark, Nevill Coghill, Cyril Connolly, Colin Davis, Hugh Delargy, +Robert Exeter, Miles Fitzalan-Howard, Constantine Fitzgibbon, William Glock, Magdalen Gofflin, Robert Graves, Graham Greene, Ian Greenless, Joseph Grimond, Harman Grisewood, Colin Hardie, Rupert Hart-Davis, Barbara Hepworth, Auberon Herbert, John Jolliffe, David Jones, Osbert Lancaster, F.R. Leavis, Cecil Day Lewis, Compton Mackenzie, George Malcolm, Max Mallowan, Alfred Marnau, Yehudi Menuhin, Nancy Mitford, Raymond Mortimer, Malcolm Muggeridge, Iris Murdoch, John Murray, Sean O'Faolain, E.J. Oliver, Oxford and Asquith, William Plomer, Kathleen Raine, William Rees-Mogg, Ralph Richardson, +John Ripon, Charles Russell, Rivers Scott, Joan Sutherland, Philip Toynbee, Martin Turnell, Bernard Wall, Patrick Wall, E.I Watkin, R.C. Zaehner.


Pro-life law students face double standard at Washington U. in St. Louis: The official Student Bar Association at Washington University in Saint Louis, acting for the University, has twice denied recognition to Law Students Pro-Life. It refused recognition because the students would not adopt the SBA’s view of what their political and moral views ought to be. Read more from FIRE.


The national pastime belongs in the nation's capital

The Washington Post presents a slide gallery of photos from Senators baseball history, accompanying a report of a billionaire's bid to buy the Expos and move them to Washington.

The president throwing out the first ball of the baseball season at the Washington ballpark was once a staple of the national pastime, but the nation's capital has been without a team since the expansion Senators moved to Texas in 1972. The original Senators left town after 1960 to become the Minnesota Twins, and are now playing for the American League pennant.

I can say I attended the last Washington game ever played at Fenway Park, in 1971, and still have in a box somewhere a souvenir Senators pennant from the occasion. It is a travesty that the national game is not played in the nation's capital. Baseball should return to Washington – and if it's a National League club, the old "Nationals" nickname – "Nats," for short – would do fine.

Some Washington baseball links: Here is a group that wants to bring a team to DC. Senators fan sites are here and here. And here is a 1970 Senators scorecard featuring No. 1 fan Richard Nixon.


Wednesday, October 09, 2002  

Sic transit gloria mundi. Arts & Letters Daily, one of the finest sites on the Web, has been shuttered. But its editors have launched a near-clone, Philosophy & Literature, albeit minus the classical dingbat. (Via Lady of Shalott)


The dingbat is what the Herald-Tribune calls the allegorical drawing in the paper's nameplate, shown here:

The IHT, heir to the late, lamented New York daily, remains a magnificent-looking paper. Here's its front page.

Perhaps the most beautiful broadsheet, in look and style, is the Vineyard Gazette. Here's its logo:

The Rutland Herald has also had a classic appearance.

And of course the New York Sun has picked up the banner of the antediluvian in newspaper design.


A Common Reader: Books of the hour and books of all time, books to be savored or read at whim: a selection of books for readers with imagination. Catalogues don't get much better than this. Disputations offers an endorsement in which I heartily concur.


Tuesday, October 08, 2002  

From a 1950s set of illustrations of the Mass. Once kneeling for Communion was not only possible, it was de rigeur.


St. Mungo be praised: Scottish archbishop offers Mass in Latin

From The Scotsman of Sept. 22 (second item):

SCOTTISH Catholics have turned to a dead language to try to breathe new life into the church.

The traditionalists won another battle yesterday when Archbishop Mario Conti held a full Tridentine Latin Mass at a church in Glasgow, the first time in 18 years it has been used in a mainstream service. The move delighted conservatives within the faith who believe the Latin rite is more inspiring and mysterious than the English version and should be introduced in churches across the country.

But liberals were furious with Conti, claiming the use of Latin would alienate far more people from the church than it would attract. For centuries the Tridentine Latin rite was the only approved way of celebrating mass.

But since the mid-1960s, when the Second Vatican Council gave approval for other languages to be used, the Latin version has been frowned upon by the majority of Catholics.

Unlike the English mass in which a priest faces his congregation, the Latin mass sees the priest turn his back, leading them rather than joining them – a gesture that many find offensive.

Cardinal Winning refused to conduct masses in Latin and was a staunch supporter of English services. And in 1984, Scotland’s catholic bishops banned the Latin rite from being used in regular church services, although it could still be performed in monasteries.

The Pope later said individual bishops could still carry out the ceremony, but none had done so until yesterday.

The service at St Mungo’s Church, in Townhead, was the first time in 30 years that a senior member of the Scottish Catholic Church has used the Latin mass.

A spokesman for Conti denied the archbishop’s action was a deliberate attempt to court conservative Catholics.

“The occasional celebration of the mass in Latin simply provides for the spiritual nourishment of those who appreciate the beauty of the Latin language and Gregorian Chant,” he said.

“Catholics in Scotland already have access to a wide range of liturgies within the Roman Rite, from folk masses to English-language choral singing.”

Conti performed the mass at the request of Una Voce, an organisation that represents traditional Catholics...

Speaking before yesterday’s service, Father Paul Francis Spencer, the rector of St Mungo, said that although he understood Latin, he was more comfortable with English when saying mass. “We are delighted to be able to welcome Archbishop Conti to the parish, and interested in hearing the Latin rite mass,” he said.

“Mass means the same to me in English or Latin." But he admitted: “I have to confess to feeling about the English mass as sometimes people feel about opera which has been translated from Italian or German into English. When you hear the English version it feels as though something is missing somehow.”


No landmark status for Rochester cathedral: City planning board rejects proposal on Sacred Heart. Visit this site to view the cathedral's current Gothic interior, with high altar and baldacchino, and to see what the inside is to look like after renovation. No pennies in the wishing well, indeed.


Angels in the Twin Cities: A $30-million renovation of Minnesota's St. Paul Cathedral was capped with the placement of a 500-pound aluminum cross atop the new copper domed roof. See a video here.


Which is this? The sanctuary of a church re-ordered to reflect the liturgical requirements of Vatican II? Or the kitchen in Bishop Murphy's posh new digs?

Yes, the butcher-block center-island makes it tricky. But here's how to tell. If there's nothing where the tabernacle should be, it's a modern sanctuary. If there are a sub-zero freezer and wine-storage cabinet, it's the bishop's kitchen.


Protests &c: The New York Sun describes the true colors of many at the latest "peace" rally in Central Park.

Reliable reporting of this sort is becoming a lost art at the New York Times, the Weekly Standard's David Tell writes in a withering account of the Times' latest cooked poll on Iraq.

Meantime, this report from the Christian Science Monitor suggests patriotism and sacrifice are notions foreign to a remarkable percentage of the MTV Generation:

But just like their Vietnam-era counterparts, today's students are talking about the draft. One Harvard junior, who asked to remain anonymous, has already discussed it with his mom, who's a medical doctor. "If there's a draft, she's going to cut off my pinkie toe so I won't be eligible," he says resolutely. And he's not alone. A poll by Luntz Research found that 37 percent of college students would try to evade a draft – and another 19 percent would serve only if they were stationed inside the US.

Ask not what you can do for your country.


Monday, October 07, 2002  
A distant mirror

Battle of Lepanto, Paolo Veronese, c. 1572

Fr. Jim Tucker reminds us today is the anniversary of the Battle of Lepanto, stirringly memorialized by Chesterton.


A just war: Many of the country's leading ethicists oppose a strike on Iraq, but a look at the centuries-old theory of just war suggests military action may be in fact be morally necessary. Jean Bethke Elshtain writes in the Boston Globe.


'Renovation' roundup

If a church is a sermon in stone, then Richard Vosko is the John Shelby Spong of liturgical design, the high priest of wreckovation.

On one of his projects, in Rochester, the good guys just won a round: The city Preservation Board unanimously recommended the exterior and -- in a rare move -- the interior structure of Sacred Heart Cathedral be designated as historic landmarks. Accidental Choir Director provides local perspective.

In San Antonio, however, the Vosko-inspired gutting of San Fernando Cathedral continues apace to approving spin. The affair is all the more dispiriting when you consider the cathedral's former glory. Here's what was left after an initial sack in the 1970s, and how it will look after the current vandals are through.



Restoration needn't involve ruination

Blueprint, St. Paul Cathedral, St. Paul, Minn.

In St. Paul, the restoration of the magnificent cathedral was completed with the raising of a cross atop the signature dome. A local news video offers a bird's-eye view of the restored St. Paul Cathedral. View a photo gallery and web-cams.

Meantime, in Ottawa, a restoration completed in 1999 returned Notre-Dame Cathedral Basilica to glory. The architectural firm of Edward J. Cuhaci & Associates maintains a site devoted to the project that features news coverage from the Ottawa Citizen. View a photo gallery

Tabernacle, Notre-Dame Cathedral Basilica, Ottawa


Thursday, October 03, 2002  
From the NYT, more on Opus Dei:

Some lash themselves with bits of rope, as monks and saints often did in the past, although they usually do not like to talk about it.

"I can tell you that some kinds of that are less painful than an hour's workout in a gym," said Dr. Joaquín Navarro-Valls, the pope's spokesman, who has long been a numerary member of Opus Dei. "I can tell you that I've tried both."

The Rev. John Paul Wauck, an American in Rome who went from Opus Dei numerary to Opus Dei priest about three years ago, said he sometimes wore a spiked chain around his thigh and denied himself even lukewarm showers.

"It's not a main point of my life in Opus Dei," said Father Wauck, who is the brother-in-law of the accused spy Robert Hanssen, who was also a member, although not a numerary.

But, Father Wauck said, it reminds him of Jesus' suffering and moves him away from material self-indulgence.

"It's a penance," he said. "It's a way of saying no to myself."


Wednesday, October 02, 2002  
"Blessed be pain. Loved be pain. Sanctified be pain. . .
Glorified be pain!"
Josemaria Escriva, The Way

A Procession of Flagellants, Goya

Opus Dei founder Josemaria Escriva, to be made a saint Oct. 6, is said to have been so fierce in beating himself with a cord-like whip called a "Discipline" that he routinely spattered the bathroom walls with blood.

The Opus Dei movement Escriva launched is today seen in the vanguard of the Catholic Church's New Evangelization, and is influential from Rome to K Street.

Yet certain devotional practices of the society remain positively medieval. These exercises in corporal mortification include wearing for two hours a day a spiked chain called a “Cilice” that breaks the skin around the upper thigh, and beating oneself 33 times once a week with the “Discipline.”

Opus Dei members interviewed by the Chicago archdiocesan newspaper said whipping is a form of suffering for God.

Martinez was put off by reading that Escriva whipped himself until he bled when she began looking into Opus Dei. “When I read that, I didn’t understand, because I always thought God gave me my body and he wants me to take care of it,” she said.

When she raised the issue with her Opus Dei spiritual director, he said that some people are called to emulate the suffering of Jesus on the cross. Others are not.

Suffering and sacrifice aren’t unusual in modern culture, said Hefferan, citing the grimaces she often sees on the faces of joggers in the morning. But most people do it for themselves, she said, while Opus Dei members do it for God.

“Sacrificing for God is the foreign idea,” she said.

Reporter Isambard Wilkinson of the Telegraph raised the issue of self-flagellation in this highly readable take on Opus Dei:

SHORTLY after I arrived in Madrid, long before other religious organisations knew of my existence, I received a telephone call from an Opus Dei official.

"You may not know who we are," he said in a consciously unthreatening voice. "But would you like to come and have an informal discussion about things?"

Sipping sherry in the organisation's press office in Madrid, I quickly appreciated what the message was. "You will hear all sorts of inaccurate theories about Opus Dei. We have no political influence at all. There is nothing strange about us," said Luis Gordon, Opus Dei's press officer.

Most Spaniards will tell you that Opus Dei is mysterious but offer very little information on what the organisation does. Most prefer merely to shudder at the mention of its name.

According to its critics, Opus Dei is a secretive and conservative religious order of well-placed people who form a near-Masonic shadowy influence behind Spain's political and financial elite.

Opus Dei's swiftly expanding influence at the heart of the Vatican makes it an obvious target for conspiracy theories. That is perhaps unsurprising as the group is known to favour practices with more than a whiff of the medieval - including the wearing of cilicios, pointed chains which dig into the thigh, or self-flagellation with a five-tailed whip while chanting the Salve Maria.

The Opus Dei man has a timeless take on the issue: "Do you like pretty women? So do I. Do you know what effort they make to get a nice figure, and increase their height with high heels - this is a very hard mortification, much more than a cicilio.

"Why does society accept this terrible mortification and then is scandalised when people do it for God?" asked Mr Gordon.

An entertaining feature in The Economist 10 years ago on old-boy networks from Skull and Bones to the Trilateral Commission looked at Opus Dei:

THE Jesuits have been around longer, but Opus Dei is rapidly supplanting the older, more intellectual order as a powerful elite at the heart of the Catholic Church. Although the organization is fairly secretive, it received unprecedented publicity earlier this year when 150,000 members descended on Rome for the beatification of the organisation's founder, Monsignor Jose Maria Escriva de Balaguer.

Opus Dei (literally, the work of God) originated in Spain in 1928, but has now spread its network through 80 countries. Many of its members are recruited at school and university. Although only 2% of Opus Dei members are priests, the organisation's adherents dedicate themselves to prayer and self-discipline. The real masochists live in residencies run by the Opus Dei, where they practise self-flagellation and wear uncomfortable spikes on the inside of their trousers. But most members of the society live outwardly normal lives and keep their membership of Opus Dei a secret, even from close friends and relatives.

Outsiders hoping to identify members of Opus Dei must look for tell-tale signs. Somewhere in the house of most members will be a small model of a donkey, representing the ass that Christ used to enter Jerusalem. A whiff of Atkinson's cologne, the favourite of Escriva, is also a giveaway.

The canonization ceremonies Oct. 6 no doubt will see Rome awash in asses and Atkinson's.

The Flagellants, photogravure after the painting by Carl Marr


Tuesday, October 01, 2002  
Thirty-five years ago today

Red Sox fans mob pitcher Jim Lonborg, Oct. 1, 1967

On Oct. 1, 1967, the final day of the season, the 100-to-1 long-shot "Impossible Dream" Red Sox rally from a 2-0 deficit to defeat the Minnesota Twins, earning a tie for the American League pennant. Later in the day, after the Angels defeat the Tigers, the Red Sox clinch their first pennant in 21 years. See snaps from the game. Read a list of the 100 greatest moments in Red Sox history as compiled by the Herald's Steve Buckley. And here's your chance to order the Boston fan's Holy Trinity of sports highlight records.


The 'Anti-War' Left Undraped

Madrid protesters wearing mock suicide bombs and little else capture the deadly frivolousness of the "anti-war" left. Little Green Footballs disapproves, while offering more candid snaps from the pacifists' favorite Religion of Peace.

Meantime, Democratic congressmen travel to Baghdad to denounce US policy. The loyal opposition? Hardly. I think what we're seeing now is the hard-core base of the Democratic Party showing its true colors, and those colors, having flirted with irrelevance and then insouciance are now perilously close to treason, writes Andrew Sullivan.

George Will writes: Hitler found "Lord Haw Haw" -- William Joyce, who broadcast German propaganda to Britain during the Second World War -- in the dregs of British extremism. But Saddam Hussein finds American collaborators among senior congressional Democrats.

Not since Jane Fonda posed for photographers at a Hanoi antiaircraft gun has there been anything like Rep. Jim McDermott, speaking to ABC's "This Week" from Baghdad, saying Americans should take Saddam Hussein at his word but should not take President Bush at his. McDermott, in his seventh term representing Seattle, said Iraqi officials promised him and his traveling companion, Rep. David E. Bonior, a 13-term Michigan Democrat, that weapons inspectors would be "allowed to look anywhere."

…McDermott and Bonior are two specimens of what Lenin, referring to Westerners who denied the existence of Lenin's police-state terror, called "useful idiots."


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