Fr. Alphonse de Valk

Is persecution around the corner?

Fr. Alphonse de Valk
By Fr. Alphonse de Valk
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TORONTO, March 7, 2012, (LifeSiteNews.com) - In Toronto’s Catholic Register (Jan. 2012), retired law professor Ian Hunter has expressed the view that Christian morality will never win against the Canadian Charter of Human Rights. Is the future really this bleak? Consider the following:

The opposition parties all approve the killing of the unborn. Some of them are concerned about seal pups but not about human babies.

The supposedly Conservative Prime Minister refuses to open the abortion debate in Canada. He says that he will not invoke section 33 (the Notwithstanding Clause of the Charter) to override hostile legislation. Canada has no abortion law, just as there is no abortion law in atheist China and North Korea.

The judiciary is no help. Activist judges will not recognize lobbying, petitions or referenda in favour of the unborn. Meanwhile since 2005 the Charter re-interpreted, tells us that same-sex relations are a universal right. The Charter does not recognize the rights of the unborn. The definition of a human being in the Criminal Code is 400 years old. It says that human life begins when the baby is fully separated from the mother. Science tells us that human life starts at conception (fertilization) but Canadian leaders do not give a hoot.

The media call abortion “an emotionally charged issue,” a “collision of values” and do not want anyone to ever open the box and see what is inside.

Professor Hunter’s arguments foreclose any future hope for a peaceful, democratic, human restoration in Canada of a Judean-Christian culture which treasures the dignity and integrity of every individual and protects it in fact as well as in theory. Have the atheists, the relativists, the secularists, who have substituted the libertine state for the principles of Christian civilization in the Western world won? For the time being, the answer appears yes.

A contemporary Catholic American writer, George Weigel, recently observed that “what began as a movement to liberate sexuality from the constraints of moral reason, custom, and law, has become a movement determined to use the instruments of law to impose its deconstruction of human sexuality and its moral relativism on all of society.” He continued: “That is what drives those who urged the Obama administration to issue its “contraceptive” mandate. Weigel added: “It is all about Leviathan as enforcer of the sexual revolution.”

In Canada too, the State, whether federal or provincial, is the Leviathan which cannot be stopped with some accommodation here or there, but must be beaten and defeated. “The sexual revolution distorts everything that gets in the way, and in due course, it will persecute anything that gets in its way” (See George Weigel, “The Libertine Police State,” National Review Online, Feb. 13, 2012).

Ottawa has now joined President Obama in using foreign policy to make the world safe for practitioners of the LGBTQ lifestyles.

The federal Minister of Justice, Catholic Rob Nicholson, immediately responded positively when the lawyer of two non-Canadian lesbians, who discovered they could not divorce because their Canadian same-sex marriage was not valid in their domicile, sent out a press release and was given publicity in the Toronto Globe and Mail. (”Feds move to close legal loophole threatening same-sex marriages,” Toronto Star, Feb. 18, 2012. See also Andrea Mrozak.

Under Harper management, the Canadian delegation at the United Nations has faithfully supported the pro-abortion policies of the ruling U.N. bureaucrats over the last seven years, including the current U.N. drive to declare abortion and homosexual relations as “universal rights.”

In Ontario Premier McGuinty uses his bloated Department of Education, together with his enlarged witch-hunting provincial Human Right Commission, to bully all parents, teachers and education officials into submitting to a new curriculum which makes the libertine sexual revolution the new ideology.

Quebec has gone further. In 2008, after the province abolished the Protestant and Catholic School boards, secular bureaucrats exacted their vengeance. Agnostics devised a religion course for Grades 1.12 where all faith beliefs, from Catholicism to vodooism, have equal status and are treated as equally true or false. Needless to say, the earlier freedom of choice was abolished by the doctrinaire secularists who immediately made their course mandatory for all schools and all students.

Canada’s Supreme Court, supremely secular in its own eyes and hostile to religious rights of any kind, ruled on February 17, 2012, that no religious freedoms had been impinged upon and denied the request for exemptions. Added Toronto’s Globe and Mail mockingly: “They (the parents) wanted to go back to a Quebec, and a Canada that no longer exists” (Editorial, “The raison d’etre of public schools,” Feb. 20, 2012).

Hard times are ahead for God’s faithful.

Fr. de Valk is the editor of Catholic Insight. This article is re-published with permission from the March 2012 edition of the magazine.


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Thaddeus Baklinski Thaddeus Baklinski Follow Thaddeus

African researchers warn early sexual activity increases risk of cancers

Thaddeus Baklinski Thaddeus Baklinski Follow Thaddeus
By Thaddeus Baklinski

A report on rising cancer rates in Africa delivered at a conference in Namibia last week warned that oral contraceptives and engaging in sexual activity from a young age lead to an increased risk of breast and reproductive system cancers.

Researchers presented the "2014 Integrated Africa Cancer Fact Sheet & Summary Score Card" during the 8th Stop Cervical, Breast and Prostate Cancer in Africa (SCCA) conference, held in Windhoek, Namibia from July 20 to 22, noted that cancer is a growing health problem in many developing countries and that breast and cervical cancer are the most common forms affecting African women.

The report said that sexually transmitted diseases (STDs) play a major role in reproductive system cancers and that young girls who engage in sexual activity risk getting, among other STDs, the human papilloma virus (HPV), some strains of which are linked to cervical cancer.

The report said although HPV infections are common in healthy women, they are usually fought off by the body’s immune system, with no discernible symptoms or health consequences.

The Cancer Association of South Africa points out that of the scores of HPV types, 14 of the more than 40 sexually transmitted varieties are considered "high risk" for causing serious illness, while two, HPV-16 and HPV-18, are linked to cervical cancer.

“Long-term use of oral contraceptives is also associated with increased risk [of cancer], and women living with HIV-AIDS are at increased risk of cervical cancer,” the report said.

Dr. Thandeka Mazibuko, a South African oncologist, told the conference attendees that when an 18-year-old is diagnosed with cervical cancer, “this means sex is an important activity in her life and she indulged from a young age.”

Mazibuko said the standard treatment for cancer of the cervix is seven weeks of radiation therapy.

“After the treatment they cannot have sex with their husbands or partners. They cannot bear children because everything has been closed up. Some may still have the womb but radiation makes them infertile,” Mazibuko said, according to a report in The Namibian.

Statistics from the Cancer Association of Namibia show that cases of cervical cancer have risen from 129 in 2005 to 266 in 2012.

The SCCA Conference theme was, "Moving forward to end Cervical Cancer by 2030: Universal Access to Cervical Cancer Prevention."

In his keynote address, host and Namibian President Hifikepunye Lucas Pohamba urged African countries to help each other to expand and modernize health care delivery in the continent.

"Within the context of the post-2015 Development Agenda and sustainable development goals, the provision of adequate health care to African women and children must be re-emphasized," said the president, according to AllAfrica.

The Namibian leader urged mothers to breastfeed their children for at least six months as a measure to prevent breast cancer.


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Hilary White Hilary White Follow Hilary

Allow ‘lethal injection’ for poor to save on palliative care: Lithuanian health minister

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By Hilary White

Euthanasia is a solution for terminally ill poor people who cannot afford palliative care and who do not want to “see their families agonize” over their suffering, Lithuania’s health minister said last week.

In an interview on national television, Minister Rimantė Šalaševičiūtė added that the Belgian law on child euthanasia ought to be “taken into account” as well. 

Šalaševičiūtė told TV3 News that Lithuania, a country whose population is 77 percent Catholic, is not a welfare state and cannot guarantee quality palliative care for all those in need of it. The solution, therefore, would be “lethal injection.”

“It is time to think through euthanasia in these patients and allow them to make a decision: to live or die,” she said.

Direct euthanasia remains illegal in the Balkan state, but activists tried to bring it to the table in 2012. A motion to drop the planned bill was passed in the Parliament in March that year in a vote of 75 to 14. Since then the country has undergone a change in government in which the far-left Social Democrats have formed the largest voting bloc.

Šalaševičiūtė is a member of Parliament for the Social Democrats, the party originally established in the late 19th century – re-formed in the late 1980s – from Marxist principles and now affiliated with the international Party of European Socialists and Socialist International.

Fr. Andrius Narbekovas, a prominent priest, lecturer, physician, bioethicist, and member of the government’s bioethics committee, called the suggestion “satanic,” according to Delfi.lt. He issued a statement saying it is the purpose of the Ministry of Health to “protect the health and life, instead of looking for ways to take away life.”

“We understand that people who are sick are in need of funds. But a society that declares itself democratic, should very clearly understand that we have to take care of the sick, not kill them,” he said.


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Islamists in Mosul mark Christian homes with an Arabic "N" for Nazarene.
Gualberto Garcia Jones, J.D.

We must open wide our doors to Iraq’s Christians

Gualberto Garcia Jones, J.D.
By Gualberto Garcia Jones J.D.

On July 18, the largest Christian community in Iraq, the Chaldean Catholics of Mosul, were given a grotesque ultimatum: leave your ancestral home, convert to Islam, or die.

All but forgotten by the 1.2 billion Catholics of the world, these last Christians who still speak Jesus’ native tongue of Aramaic and live in the land of Abraham and Jonah are being wiped out before our very eyes.

As a way of issuing a thinly-veiled threat, reminiscent of the Nazi persecution of the Jews, the Arabic letter “N” (for Nazarean) has been painted on the outside of the homes of all known Christians in Mosul.

These threats, issued by the fanatical Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS) known for its bloodthirsty rampage of executions, have been taken very seriously by the several hundred thousand Christians in Mosul who have left with little more than the clothes they were wearing. 

At least most of these Christians were able to flee and find temporary protection among the Kurds in their semi-autonomous region.  However the Kurds do not have the resources to defend or shelter the Chaldean Christians for much longer.

On Monday, during an interview on Fox News, Republican U.S. Rep. Frank Wolf, who recently joined with 54 other members of the House of Representatives in a letter to President Obama asking him to act to protect these communities, stated that while Iraqi President Maliki had sent military flights to Mosul to evacuate Shiite Muslims, the US has done nothing to protect the Chaldean Christians.  Rep. Wolf also stated emphatically that President Obama has done “almost nothing” about the genocide taking place.

The silence from the White House is deafening.  But the lack of leadership from the hierarchy of the Catholic Church in America has been shocking as well.

Nevertheless, the plight of these Iraqi Christians is beginning to be taken seriously.   This is due in large part to the heroic efforts of local Iraqi religious leaders like Chaldean Patriarch Sako, who has gone on a whirlwind tour of the world to alert us all of the plight of these Iraqi Christians.  In a statement demonstrating his character, he told the Christians of Iraq last week, “We are your shepherds, and with our full responsibility towards you we will stay with you to the end, will not leave you, whatever the sacrifices.”

Before the U.S.-led invasion of Iraq was launched there were approximately 1.5 to 2 million Christians living in Iraq.  Today, there are believed to be less than 200,000.  The numbers speak for themselves.

Now that the world is beginning to be aware of the genocide in Northern Iraq, many of us ask ourselves: what can we do?  As citizens and as Christians blessed to live in nations with relative peace and security, what can we do?

The answer is quite simple and unexpected.  Demand that our government and church pull its head out of the sand and follow France. Yes, France.  

Yesterday, in a heroic gesture of Christian solidarity that would make Joan of Arc proud, the government of France opened wide its doors to the persecuted Iraqi Christians.  

”France is outraged by these abuses that it condemns with the utmost firmness," Laurent Fabius, France's foreign minister, and Bernard Cazeneuve, France's interior minister, said in a joint statement on Monday.

"The ultimatum given to these communities in Mosul by ISIS is the latest tragic example of the terrible threat that jihadist groups in Iraq, but also in Syria and elsewhere, pose to these populations that are historically an integral part of this region," they added. "We are ready, if they wish, to facilitate their asylum on our soil.  We are in constant contact with local and national authorities to ensure everything is done to protect them.”

The French statement drives home three crucial elements that every government, especially the United States, should communicate immediately:

  1. Recognize the genocide and name the perpetrators and victims.

  2. Officially condemn what is happening in the strongest terms.

  3. Offer a solution that includes cooperation with local authorities but which leads by making solid commitments such as offering asylum or other forms of protection.

With regard to the Church, we should look to the Chaldean Patriarch and the Iraqi bishops who shared their expectations explicitly in an open letter to “all people of conscience in Iraq and around the world” to take “practical actions to assure our people, not merely expressions of condemnation.”  Noticeably, the last section of the letter from the Iraqi bishops, before a final prayer to God, is an expression of thanks to the Kurdish government, which has welcomed them not just with “expressions” of goodwill but, like France, with a sacrificial hospitality.

On Friday, July 25, the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops did issue a statement, but unfortunately it lacked much in terms of leadership or solutions.  We should encourage our bishops to do better than that, be bolder and stronger for our persecuted brothers and sisters, name names and offer concrete sacrificial aid. In a word, be more like the French.

In 1553, Rome welcomed the Chaldean church into the fold of the Catholic Church.  Nearly 500 years later, Catholic Americans must find ways to welcome these persecuted people into our country, into our churches, and into our own homes if need be.

I say, I am with you St. Joan of Arc.   I am with you, France.  I am with you, Chaldeans!

Gualberto Garcia Jones is the Executive Director of the International Human Rights Group, a non-profit organization based in Washington, DC, that seeks to advance the fundamental rights to life, the natural family, and religious liberty through international law and international relations. 


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