"He instinctively can find the shining greatness of our American culture and does a good job of highlighting it (although he also does have those rare lapses when he writes about hockey, but that is something caused by impurities in the Eastern waters or something)." Erik Keilholtz
Under the patronage of St. Tammany
Mark C. N. Sullivan is an editor at a Massachusetts university. He is married and the father of three children. Email
The village of Mellieha on the island of Malta has just finished celebrating its nine-day Feast of Our Lady of Victories. The statue (above) in the village church was carved from the bark of a tree.
After the 1571 victory by a combined Christian fleet over the Turks at Lepanto that saved Europe from conquest and was attributed to the intercession of Our Lady, Pope Pius V proclaimed a feast day for Our Lady of Victories.
Pope John Paul II, by contrast, this week responded to the terrorist school-massacre in Russia withpacifistplatitudes.
Violence Won't Halt Terrorism, Says Pope
VATICAN CITY, SEPT. 8, 2004 (Zenit.org).- John Paul II affirmed in a message of a personal tone that "violence always generates violence" and thus it cannot be the answer to terrorism.
"War never again!" he exclaimed in a letter he sent to the participants of the "Men and Religions" meeting, held this week in Milan and organized by the Community of Sant'Egidio and the Milan Archdiocese.
John Paul II reminded the conference participants that in 1993, at another meeting in Milan, world religious leaders had united in a call for peace, insisting that violence should never be motivated by religious faith.
Since that time, the Pope observed, "unfortunately, new conflicts have arisen." But he insisted: "Peace is always possible!"
The spread of terrorism across the world "calls for firmness and decision, in fighting the workers of death," the Pope said. But he quickly added that the decisive action against terrorism should not take the form of a military campaign. "Violence begets violence," he said. "War must always be considered a defeat: a defeat of reason and of humanity." He argued that world leaders should seek to root out the primary causes of terrorism, "especially misery, desperation and the emptiness in hearts."
John Paul II urged international leaders "not to give in to the logic of violence, vendetta, and hatred, but rather to persevere in dialogue." He concluded by expressing the hope that "men soon make a spiritual and cultural leap forward to outlaw war!"
Remember, when death-cultists have packed your kids' schoolbus with Semtex, peace is always possible!
One would expect a world moral leader who stewards the faith of Ss. Michael the Archangel and Joan of Arc, who survived the Nazis and himself inspired the collapse of the Iron Curtain, not to shrink from calling and confronting evil by name.
Again, for some reason, the pontiff seems detached from the suffering, the fear and the righteous anger caused by the brutalization of children. Perhaps this is a reflection of capacities diminished by age and ill health, of insulation from the day-to-day by cardinalatial handlers. Perhaps as regards war and peace, he got hold of a bad lotus leaf with the Dalai Lama.
We seem to have the Bill Buckner of Popes---Hall of Fame career, catastrophic ending.
And I wish I had a penny for ever post over the last few years that began along the lines of, “ Perhaps what the Pope means is...” or “ My theory of what he must mean is” ....or “ I wonder if what he is trying to get at is...” or, “ My speculation about his intent goes like this...” or, “ I bet he is attempting to..."or, “ I think the odds are that he is motivated by...”
The variants go on and on, but they all add up to everyone guessing, and it is sho nuff tiresome, and, even that ain’t the worst of it all. The worst of it all is too disturbing to type out.
L'Espresso religion columnist Sandro Magister's latest piece carries this headline: Beslan, the September 11 of the Christian Children. But the Church Doesn't See.
He who cannot protect himself or his nearest and dearest or their honor by non-violently facing death, may and ought to do so by violently dealing with the oppressor. He who can do neither of the two is a burden.