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News

New report shows gigantic drop in abortions in Missouri

Abortions in Missouri dramatically dropped over 2018 as the state’s only abortion facility struggled to maintain its license after a spate of botched abortions.
Tue Jan 14, 2020 - 9:01 pm EST
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Checubus / Shutterstock.com
Cheryl Sullenger
By Cheryl Sullenger
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UPDATE from Operation Rescue: *Originally, this report indicated a 78% decrease in abortions between 2018 and 2019 based on Missouri DHSS numbers. After this report was published, it was discovered that there was a mistaken entry on the 2018 DHSS chart used for this report. That DHSS chart inadvertently entered the total number of abortions on Missouri women, instead of the number of abortions that took place in Missouri in 2018. Operation Rescue made corrections to this story after the accidental error on the DHSS chart was discovered. (View chart with mistakeView chart with actual numbers.) The actual decrease in abortions is still substantial, and the 2018 DHSS chart error does not affect the accuracy of the rest of this report.

JEFFERSON CITY, Missouri, January 14, 2020 (Operation Rescue) — A preliminary report from the Missouri Department of Health and Senior Services (DHSS) shows that abortions in Missouri dramatically dropped over 2018 as the state’s only abortion facility, Reproductive Health Services in St. Louis, struggled to maintain its abortion license after a spate of botched abortions.

The report, which was submitted to the state legislature in compliance with reporting regulations, showed that from January 1 through November 15, 2019, 1,354 abortions were conducted in Missouri by RHS Planned Parenthood.

The preliminary number represents a 54 percent* decrease over the 2018 totals, when 2,910* abortions took place at three abortion facilities in Missouri, according to state abortion statistics kept by the DHSS. 

An abortion pill clinic in Kansas City and a surgical abortion facility in Columbia — affiliates of Planned Parenthood — both halted abortions in 2018, and did no abortions in 2019.

“Missouri has had tremendous success reducing abortions, closing abortion facilities, and preventing a planned expansion of abortions into additional communities,” said Troy Newman, President of Operation Rescue. “Their laws and willingness to enforce them has protected thousands of women from harm and saved countless innocent lives. Other states should look to Missouri as an example.”

Abortions by type

Of the 1,354 abortions done at the RHS Planned Parenthood in 2019, 1,040 were surgical suction curettage procedures, which are done in the first trimester of pregnancy.

There were 307 of the more dangerous Laminaria Dilation and Evacuation (D&E) dismemberment procedures that are typically done in the second trimester of pregnancy and beyond.

The number of abortions done using abortion-inducing drugs fell from 2,529 in 2018 to just six in 2019. That is because RHS Planned Parenthood abortionists refused to comply with a Missouri law that requires a pelvic exam prior to dispensing abortion drugs to women in order to detect any contraindications, such as an ectopic pregnancy. Instead, Planned Parenthood of the Greater St. Louis Region and Southwest Missouri, which operates RHS Planned Parenthood, transferred its medical abortion business to an office in a Belleville, Illinois, strip mall and referred the vast majority of medical abortions there.

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In October 2019, a new Planned Parenthood surgical facility that also dispenses abortion drugs opened in Fairview Heights, Illinois, resulting in the closure of the Belleville strip mall location.

Complications

There were 83 reported abortion complications noted in the preliminary report. Of those, 17 took place at RHS Planned Parenthood and 66 took place at out-of-state facilities or unknown locations.

There was a total of 53 medical abortion complications — 51 of which took place at out-of-state facilities, while 23 surgical abortion complications were recorded in 2019.

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“We have long understood that abortion drugs are more dangerous than surgical abortions and carry a higher complication rate,” said Newman. “The national trend in liberal states that allows abortion pills to be distributed through webcams, or smart phones, or non-physicians is ill-advised. We are thankful that Missouri has taken steps to protect the public from these hazards to life and health.”

Since the preliminary report was compiled, there has been one more medical emergency at RHS Planned Parenthood in St. Louis that required emergency ambulance transport to a hospital emergency room. That incident took place on November 21, 2019. 

Then, on December 19, 2019, an ambulance was called to Planned Parenthood’s new Fairview Heights abortion facility for a woman who was bleeding so much that it could not be controlled by Planned Parenthood staff — the same staff that also does abortions at the St. Louis facility where there is documentation for 75 women that have been transported by ambulance for emergency care.

Failed inspections and complaints

Missouri also recorded that four on-site inspections took place at RHS Planned Parenthood in 2019, with twelve deficiencies cited and no corrections done. 

The deficiencies, which included botched or incomplete abortions on at least four women, were the basis for the DHSS decision to revoke RHS Planned Parenthood’s surgical abortion license last year. Planned Parenthood had refused to cooperate with the DHSS investigation into the harm it inflicted on women. Planned Parenthood appealed the revocation. A decision by an Administrative Court, which heard the licensing dispute, is expected next month.

In addition, seven complaints were lodged against the Planned Parenthood abortion facility.

“We are very interested to see the final Missouri abortion statistics for 2019, but until then, the preliminary report shows that pro-life activism, together with good laws and a willingness to enforce those laws, literally saves lives. It also shows that abortion is not safe, and the abortion pills are more dangerous than Planned Parenthood wants anyone to believe,” said Newman. “We pray that the decision to revoke RHS Planned Parenthood’s abortion license will be upheld and that Missouri will become the first state without an active abortion facility since abortion was decriminalized in 1973.”

SB5 Report 2019 FnlDft by Cheryl Sullenger on Scribd

Published with permission from Operation Rescue.


  abortion, missouri, reproductive health services, st. louis

News

Parents protesting in NJ to protect children from ‘radical’ new statewide LGBT curricula

New Jersey became the second state in the nation, following California, to pass a law requiring public schools to teach about 'LGBT history.'
Tue Jan 14, 2020 - 8:23 pm EST
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Kevin Mooney
By

TRENTON, N.J., January 14, 2020 (Daily Signal) — Parents are plenty angry about a New Jersey law that requires LGBT material to be incorporated into public school classroom instruction.

The parents say they are concerned the new law will “teach lifestyles and life choices that stand 100% against our family values.” They object to their tax dollars being used for what they call an “assault on religious liberty.”

And they say a special interest group helping develop curricula for the new requirements has a “radical agenda” that could jeopardize the health and safety of children.

One parent warned about how the “gender ideology” already prevalent in public schools can “brainwash” a child into believing he is a girl rather than a boy and vice-versa.

As parents found out Jan. 4 at a “parental rights” conference in Flemington, New Jersey, elected officials and religious leaders share their concerns. But the effort to reverse these laws or prevent their implementation will be an uphill battle.  

At the meeting, Victoria Jakelsky, state director of a grassroots group called Protect Your Children, or Team PYC, estimated that about 60 parental rights activists from Team PYC would be in Trenton Wednesday to testify against the new law.

But Kathy Goldenberg, president of the New Jersey State Board of Education, told parents Wednesday that the board was not empowered to make any policy changes with regard to the curriculum focused on lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender issues.

“The law was enacted by the state Legislature, and it did not grant the board a policymaking role with this law,” Goldenberg said. “But we are glad to listen to your comments.”

At issue is LGBT education legislation that New Jersey Gov. Phil Murphy, a Democrat, signed into law Jan. 31, 2019.

New Jersey became the second state in the nation, following California, to pass a law requiring public schools to teach about LGBT history.  

The New Jersey measure says the state board of education “shall include instruction on the political, economic and social contribution of persons with disabilities and lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender people in an appropriate place in the curriculum of middle school and high school students as part of the district’s implementation of the New Jersey Student Learning Standards.”

A pilot program designed to accommodate the new curriculum began in 12 public schools as of Jan. 7.

All New Jersey middle and high schools are supposed to be equipped to begin meeting the new requirements this coming fall.

The immediate aim in speaking at the school board hearing Wednesday and in meeting with public officials is to find a way to postpone full implementation of the program, Jakelsky said.

“We want to be clear. We care about each and every child, and we support and defend equality,” Jakelsky told The Daily Signal. “We are highly concerned that the LGBT history will teach lifestyles and life choices that stand 100% against our family values, our deeply held religious views, and the way we practice our faith.”

Some parents said they could support an opt-out provision, but Jakelsky said she does not think that would be sufficient.

All the groups taking part in the Jan. 4 conference were united in opposition to the new law. Those included “teachers, school board members, Orthodox Jews, Muslims, and Coptic Christians,” said Jakelsky, who lives in Hunterdon County.

Protect Your Children, she said, has grown to about 1,000 active members since being formed at a rally last June. It is affiliated with ParentalRights.org, and includes evangelical Protestants, Roman Catholics, Coptic Christians, and other concerned citizens, she said.

Jakelsky said Team PYC also is aligned with Muslim and Jewish groups that share concerns about the potential dangers the LGBT curriculum presents to students. Team PYC is on Facebook. 

But some were there Jan. 4 to bring to light similar laws enacted by Murphy and New Jersey’s Democrat-controlled Legislature. 

Crystal Lopez, who lives in Sussex County, attended on behalf of NewJerseyMama.net, which advocates repeal of a state law that she says prevents licensed therapists from providing individuals afflicted with gender dysphoria from obtaining a “fair and balanced medical assessment.” 

Lopez, who also is active with the Kelsey Coalition, a nationwide group that works to “promote policies and laws to protect young people who identify as transgender,” recounted a two-hour phone conversation she had with her son when he “came out” and said he was transgender. She tells the full story on her website.

Her son was 19 and attending Rutgers University at the time, and Lopez asked counselors at Rutgers to help him identify his male biology. But a New Jersey law against “conversion therapy” prevented counselors from giving her son the help he needed, Lopez said during her presentation.

“Gender ideology has brainwashed my son and erased his childhood,” Lopez said. “My son now thinks he is really a girl. The curriculum that is being implemented is really harmful and is meant to confuse our children.”

Others focused on Garden State Equality, a group headquartered in Asbury Park that describes itself as a “statewide advocacy and education organization for the lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender community,” and helped establish the curriculum and initiate the pilot program.  

Garden State Equality, which claims 150,000 members and presents details of the LGBT curriculum on its website, is working to advance a “radical agenda” that “undermines the constitutional rights of parents,” Jakelsky said.

The Daily Signal sought comment from Garden State Equality for this report, but the group did not respond before publication.

Thomas Sobol, of Flemington, took issue with what he called an assault on personal freedom.

The LGBT agenda is “wrong, wrong, wrong for public schools,” Sobol told The Daily Signal. “This agenda should not be forced on people and I don’t think that it’s age appropriate to have this in public schools. Public education should be neutral, and it’s unfair to exclude people with religious values. This agenda did not come out of nowhere.”

Mayor Ed McKelvey, a Republican from Alloway Township in Salem County and an ordained pastor who has attracted media attention for speaking out against the LGBT curriculum, said it is a matter of right and wrong.

“God never calls you to do something that does not line up with his word, even if what he calls you to do doesn’t always make natural sense,” McKelvey told audience members.

Pat Stanley, a member of the Franklin Township School Board in Somerset County, warned Team PYC members that too many government officials “have a mindset that says your kids are theirs.”

She said the law firm Strauss Esmay Associates, based in Toms River, “greases the skids” for the LGBT curriculum to be implemented in the state. Stanley estimates that it costs schools about $13,000 a year to work with Strauss Esmay and that the firm has about 500 clients.

“You are the teachers of your children, not the government,” Stanley said. “This is an assault on the rights of parents. We should not have to protect our children against this nonsense. We already have kids who can’t read or do math, and now they are being burdened with this undue influence.”

The Daily Signal sought comment from Strauss Esmay, but the law firm did not respond after acknowledging the inquiry.

Mayor Alfonso Cirulli of Barnegat Township in Ocean County called on Christians from across denominations to unite in an effort to reform New Jersey laws that undermine biblical teachings.

Cirulli, a Republican, has been widely quoted for saying that the LGBT curriculum mandates could “indoctrinate” students.

 “This is a spiritual battle,” he said. “We have the Lord behind us.”

Cirulli, a former assistant school principal, told the audience Jan. 4 that the letter “P” for pedophilia could be added to the LGBT acronym.

Cirulli said he sees a “full-scale assault” against Christian values at work in television commercials, public libraries, the toy industry, and other venues. 

Pastor Steve Nash from LOFT Wesleyan Church in Hillsborough suggested parents may need to start pulling children out of public schools. 

“There is a battle for the souls of our children and our nation,” Nash said in his talk, adding:

They are trying to propagate their views onto innocent children. As Christians, we see homosexuality as a matter of rebellion against God because it undermines the creation of God. This is being done to undermine the institution of the family. As parents, we have an awesome responsibility to raise kids because they are a gift from God.

A dozen members of Team PYC are scheduled to meet Jan. 30 with Lamont Repollet, New Jersey’s commissioner of education.

Group members also plan to testify at school boards across the state in February and March, and to hold “prayer and policy meetings” in some counties.

Published with permission from The Daily Signal.


  child abuse, education, homosexuality, lgbt tyranny, new jersey, phil murphy, propaganda, public schools

News

Swiss prisons now considering assisted suicide for prisoners

A prisoner in Switzerland, being held indefinitely for sexual 'delinquencies,' is now petitioning to be killed by a doctor.
Tue Jan 14, 2020 - 8:20 pm EST
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Cassy Fiano-Chesser
By Cassy Fiano-Chesser

January 14, 2020 (Live Action News) — A request from a child rapist spending life behind bars could possibly change the law surrounding assisted suicide in Switzerland if it is approved. Peter Vogt has been convicted of violent sexual assaults over decades against girls and women, with ages ranging from 10 to 56. Now, Vogt claims to be suffering from heart and kidney problems, and has applied to die at Exit, the Swiss assisted suicide clinic.

In 2004, Swiss voters approved a measure that allows people with repeated sexual “delinquencies” like Vogt to be held in prison indefinitely. Vogt was put behind bars in 1996, and authorities have continuously decided that he still poses a threat. So Vogt has seemingly decided that assisted suicide will be his ticket out of jail.

“It is natural that one would rather commit suicide than be buried alive for years to come,” he wrote in a letter to AFP. “It would be better to be dead than to be left to vegetate behind these walls.” So in 2018, he contacted Exit Switzerland, arguing that he should be able to kill himself just like anyone else. But it’s a little more complicated than that, according to Exit’s vice president, Juerg Wiler. “We told him that his particular case needed to be clarified,” Wiler said to AFP.

Why does it need to be clarified? Because Swiss laws only ban assisted suicide if it’s being done for “selfish reasons.” Authorities then asked for input from the Swiss Centre of Expertise in Prison and Probation, which said in October that prisoners should be able to take advantage of assisted suicide. They clarified that if the prisoner is claiming he wants to die due to mental illness, two specialists must be consulted, but ultimately, it should be approved for “a physical or mental illness resulting in unbearable suffering,” according to Barbara Rohner, who was the lead author of the foundation’s report. And she expects for more of these requests to come forward in the future. “There will be more and more elderly and sick prisoners in detention because of the ageing of the prison population,” she said.

Vogt seemingly agrees, saying he knows of another prisoner who also wants assisted suicide. “Nobody should have to commit suicide in his cell alone,” he said. And Celine Ehrwein, an ethics professor at Heig-VD University, told Radio Télévision Suisse that depriving a prisoner of assisted suicide is a form of “torture.”

For now, Vogt hopes to be euthanized on his birthday, which is August 13th. Only time will tell if that request will ultimately be approved. But if it is, it will mark another disturbing step down an already very slippery slope regarding euthanasia in Europe.

Published with permission from Live Action News.


  assisted suicide, euthanasia, prison, switzerland

News

Utah lieutenant governor retreats from abortion-slavery remarks after Dems attack

'In retrospect, I would've used another analogy,' said pro-life lieutenant governor Spencer Cox following Democrat criticism.
Tue Jan 14, 2020 - 8:17 pm EST
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Calvin Freiburger Calvin Freiburger Follow Calvin
By Calvin Freiburger

January 14, 2020 (LifeSiteNews) — Utah’s Republican lieutenant governor, Spencer Cox, drew the ire of state Democrat lawmakers over the weekend with remarks likening legal abortion to America’s past toleration of slavery. He backed away from the comparison days later.

“I truly believe that at some point in the future, future generations will look back on us today, and they will ... look at abortion the way we look at slavery,” Cox said Saturday at a gubernatorial candidate forum hosted by the conservative Eagle Forum, Fox 13 reports. “It will go down in history as one of the greatest travesties in the history of humankind.” Cox made the statement while answering that he would sign a law affirming that life begins at conception.

A group of black Democrats in the state legislature took umbrage at the comparison, the Salt Lake Tribune reports

“To compare the brutal enslavement of black Americans to a woman’s constitutionally protected right is offensive,” state Rep. Sandra Hollins declared, speaking on behalf of herself; state Reps. Angela Romero, Mark Wheatley, and Karen Kwan; and state Sens. Luz Escamilla and Jani Iwamoto. “Human bondage, forced labor and the destruction of families is the darkest possible mark on our nation’s soul, and its effects are still felt to this day. We hope that future political discourse in our state will not include such callous political language.”

Cox initially stood by his comments, issuing a statement that framed his support for the unborn as consistent with the defense of numerous minority groups Democrats claim to represent. “I have always tried to be a voice for the most vulnerable in our society, those facing intergenerational poverty, refugees, the LGBTQ community, our multicultural communities — and yes, the unborn,” he said. “I also included in my response that our party should do more to support single mothers, pregnant women and children facing poverty and trauma. I continue to be unapologetically pro-life.”

Later, however, he issued another statement distancing himself from his original comparison. “In retrospect, I would’ve used another analogy,” he said. “I was not making a comparison that abortion is slavery. All I was saying is I think we will regret — future generations will regret — what’s happening right now with hundreds of thousands of abortions in our country.”

In fact, the parallels between abortion and slavery extend well beyond the obvious. Both denied the equality and humanity of a certain class of people in order to violate their fundamental rights; both were sustained by intensely controversial Supreme Court rulings (Roe v. Wade; Dred Scott v. Sandford); and both even rested on similar arguments about personal freedom, America’s Founding principles, and human progress.

The other three Republican candidates at the forum — former Utah House speaker Greg Hughes, former Utah GOP chairman Thomas Wright, and businessman Jeff Burningham — all said they would sign a life-at-conception bill as well.


  2020 elections, abortion, angela romero, democrats, eagle forum, jani iwamoto, karen kwan, luz escamilla, mark wheatley, republicans, sandra hollins, slavery, spencer cox, utah

News

Priest calls Catholics to return to receiving Holy Communion kneeling to avert World War 3

Fr. Mark Goring believes that reverential reception of the Holy Eucharist can fix the world's problems.
Tue Jan 14, 2020 - 6:26 pm EST
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At St. Peter’s Basilica on November 3, 2008, Pope Benedict XVI distributes Holy Communion on the tongue to the kneeling faithful.
Martin M. Barillas Martin M. Barillas Follow Martin
By Martin Barillas

HOUSTON, January 14, 2019 (LifeSiteNews) -- Observing that the world is doing “what is evil in the sight of God,” a priest is calling on Catholics to return to the ancient practice of receiving the Holy Eucharist while kneeling as an act of reparation. 

In one of his daily video reflections, titled How to Avert World War 3, Fr. Mark Goring alluded to fears among some that an apocalyptic war is imminent. 

He affirmed that “God sends chastisements when His people go astray.” 

The priest said Catholics should not wait to plead for God’s mercy. Rather than making statements or issuing documents, Fr. Goring said, “I believe that as a Church we should express our repentance before the Lord and plead for mercy in concrete, tangible ways.”

Fr. Goring called on the entire Church, “as a sign of our repentance, as a sign of acknowledgment and adoration of Our Lord in the Holy Eucharist,” to return to the practice of receiving the Eucharist while kneeling.

“Is receiving the Eucharist on our knees going to fix all the world’s problems? I think it will,” he said. 

Reciting Revelation 7:11, he said, “All the angels stood around the throne, and around the elders, and the four living creatures; they prostrated themselves before the throne of God, and worshipped.”

Around the time of the Second Vatican Council in the early 1960s, the ancient practice of receiving Communion while kneeling began to fall away. 

An article published on the Vatican website, which Fr. Goring mentioned, provides a history of the practice of receiving the Holy Eucharist since the first century after the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ. While it acknowledged that in the earliest days of the Church the Eucharist was probably received in the hand, it noted a change in this practice came early on. 

The Vatican website said that starting in the time of the Fathers of the Church, the distribution of the Eucharist became more restricted “in favor of distributing Holy Communion on the tongue.” 

There are two stated reasons for this: “a) first, to avoid, as much as possible, the dropping of Eucharistic particles; b) second, to increase among the faithful devotion to the Real Presence of Christ in the Sacrament of the Eucharist.” St. Thomas Aquinas, known as the Angelic Doctor for his huge contributions to theology, referred, for example, to receiving the Eucharist on the tongue, and added that “touching the Body of the Lord is proper only to the ordained priest.”

Additionally, the article said, “The Western Church has established kneeling as one of the signs of devotion appropriate to communicants. Kneeling indicates and promotes the adoration necessary before receiving the Eucharistic Christ.” 

Citing then-Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger and future Pope Benedict XVI, who wrote in The Spirit of the Liturgy, "Communion only reaches its true depth when it is supported and surrounded by adoration." 

Benedict added that “the practice of kneeling for Holy Communion has in its favor a centuries-old tradition, and it is a particularly expressive sign of adoration, completely appropriate in light of the true, real and substantial presence of Our Lord Jesus Christ under the consecrated species.”

According to Fr. Goring, the article is a reminder of the importance of “truly adoring the Lord, before and while we are receiving Him in the Holy Eucharist.” 

Confident that receiving the Body and Blood of Jesus Christ on the tongue while kneeling can actually solve the world’s problems, Fr. Goring said finally: “I believe that this one simple but real gesture can avert wars.”

Fr. Goring is a member of the Companions of the Cross, a congregation of Catholic priests founded in 1985 by Fr. Robert Bedard.


  benedict xvi, catholic, communion, holy communion, holy eucharist, joseph ratzinger, mark goring

News

Tennessee senate passes bill so adoption agencies won’t be forced to place kids with gay couples

'Tennessee should welcome everyone who is dedicated to helping vulnerable children, including the many faith-based agencies that play such a crucial role in serving our most vulnerable children,' said the bill's sponsor.
Tue Jan 14, 2020 - 5:37 pm EST
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By Calvin Freiburger

NASHVILLE, Tennssee, January 14, 2020 (LifeSiteNews) – Legislation to ensure that Tennessee adoption agencies are not forced to place children in same-sex homes took one step closer to becoming law this week, thanks to a 20-6 vote by the state Senate.

The bill would ensure that licensed adoption agencies cannot be forced to make child placement decisions that “violate the agency's written religious or moral convictions or policies,” the Nashville Tennessean reports, and cannot be sued, denied public funds, or be rejected for license applications on the basis of such a decision.

Several Republicans voted “present” rather than for or against the bill, however. GOP Lt. Gov. Randy McNally claimed the bill would be redundant due to religious freedom protections Tennessee already has on the books, and that this new measure could potentially undermine them.

GOP state Sen. Steve Dickerson posited a less-altruistic concern: that if the bill succeeds “we can probably kiss [hosting various national sporting events] goodbye.”

Tennessee “needs all hands-on deck when it comes to providing loving homes for children in need,” said Republican bill sponsor Sen. Paul Rose in defense of the measure. “SB 1304 simply makes sure that these agencies can continue to do this vital work just as they do today, consistent with their religious convictions. Tennessee should welcome everyone who is dedicated to helping vulnerable children, including the many faith-based agencies that play such a crucial role in serving our most vulnerable children.”

A variety of social science literature supports the conviction that children are best served by homes with both a mother and a father, whereas a homosexual male couple would by definition lack a mother, and a lesbian couple would be unable to provide a father.

The bill previously passed the state House last year, and now requires only a signature from Republican Gov. Bill Lee. However, Lee said Tuesday morning he would not yet comment on whether he plans to sign it into law.


  adoption, adoption agencies, homosexuality, lgbt, paul rose, randy mcnally, religious adoption agencies, religious liberty, same-sex adoption, steve dickerson, tennessee

News

Secret Vatican letter to bishops: Pope’s final doc on Amazon Synod coming within a month

The Apostolic Exhortation is to have the same name as the preparatory document for the Synod: 'New Paths for the Church and for an Integral Ecology.'
Tue Jan 14, 2020 - 5:10 pm EST
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John-Henry Westen John-Henry Westen Follow John-Henry
By John-Henry Westen

VATICAN, January 14, 2020 (LifeSiteNews) – The Pope wants to publish a final document on the Amazon Synod by early February, if not the end of January, according to a confidential Vatican letter sent to bishops of the world dated January 13, 2020.

The letter, which was leaked to LifeSiteNews and confirmed as authentic, was signed by Cardinal Claudio Hummes, the General Rapporteur of the Synod on the Amazon. It informs the prelates that another letter will come to them in about 10 days with more instructions and that they will be sent an embargoed copy of the exhortation prior to its public release.

The Apostolic Exhortation is to have the same name as the preparatory document for the Synod: New Paths for the Church and for an Integral Ecology.

The letter hints at the contents of the final document by providing reading to prepare for the document’s presentation. It suggests that a press conference with the bishop about the new exhortation should include “an indigenous spokesperson if relevant in your area, an experienced pastoral leader (ordained or religious, layman or laywoman), an expert on climate or ecology, and a youth involved in peer ministry.”

Moreover, the letter also suggests preparation by way of reading documents including:


  amazon synod, catholic, pope francis

News

Warren demands gender-confused male inmates be placed with women in prisons

The Democrat presidential hopeful claims 'trans' men 'are at risk' when imprisoned with individuals of the same biological sex.
Tue Jan 14, 2020 - 4:14 pm EST
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By Calvin Freiburger

January 14, 2020 (LifeSiteNews) – Massachusetts senator and Democrat presidential candidate Elizabeth Warren declared this week that biological males who identify as “transgender women” be incarcerated with actual women instead of their fellow men, ostensibly in the name of safety.

"We have to stop putting trans women who are incarcerated into prisons with men where they are at risk. It is our responsibility,” Warren told supporters at an Iowa campaign stop, The Hill reported

If Warren were to become president and pursue the policy change, it would be likely take the form of relaxing the Trump administration’s standards for placing gender-confused individuals in opposite-sex prisons, which consider a variety of factors but start by recognizing biological sex for the initial determination.

Several conservative figures criticized Warren for the proposal and its likely consequences for actual female inmates:

There has been growing concern in both the United States and the United Kingdom over placing men who claim to be women in female prison populations. A record number of male inmates in England and Wales claim to be female, a subject that has garnered controversy partly due to cases like that of Stephen Wood, who assaulted four female inmates after being housed in a women’s facility as “Karen White.” Canada and Scotland have also seen cases of male prisoners claiming “transgender” status in order to secure lighter treatment during their incarceration.

Warren, who currently places third in the field according to RealClearPolitics’ national average, has garnered a reputation during the campaign for a pattern of what her critics characterize as “woke” virtue signaling. She displays her “preferred pronouns” on social media as a show of solidarity with transgender activists, declared that “trans,” “nonconforming,” and “non-binary” women of color to be the “backbone” of American democracy, and has vowed to wear a pink Planned Parenthood scarf to her inauguration if elected. 


  2020 democrat primary, democrat, elizabeth warren, prison, transgenderism, women's prison

News

Bishop Schneider defends Cdl Sarah for his ‘heroic’ book on priestly celibacy 

‘One might say that the intervention of Cardinal Sarah has provoked, so to speak, the anger of hell.’
Tue Jan 14, 2020 - 3:22 pm EST
Bishop Athanasius Schneider
Bishop Athanasius Schneider in Rome, April 7, 2018 Diane Montagna / LifeSiteNews
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By Diane Montagna

PETITION: Support Cardinal Sarah's Defense of Priestly Celibacy! Sign the petition here

ROME, January 14, 2019 (LifeSiteNews) – Bishop Athanasius Schneider is speaking out in strong support of Cardinal Robert Sarah for his new book with Benedict XVI defending priestly celibacy, calling his actions “heroic.” 

News of the forthcoming volume, titled “From the Depths of Our Hearts: Priesthood, Celibacy, and the Crisis of the Catholic Church,” was announced on Sunday, receiving a wave of praise but also considerable backlash

In a statement issued on Tuesday, January 14 (see full text below), the auxiliary bishop of Astana, Kazakhstan argues that the “slander and lies” directed against the Guinean cardinal only prove that the new volume on priestly celibacy is both “timely” and “necessary.”

Bishop Schneider writes: “One might say that the intervention of Cardinal Sarah has provoked, so to speak, the anger of hell.”

Cardinal Sarah, he says, has “given voice” to numerous bishops, priests and laity, who have been “stifled” by “influential groups” that are lauded by the world but may rightly be numbered among the “enemies of the Catholic Faith.” 

In his statement, Bishop Schneider also notes, with regret, the “abandonment” Cardinal Sarah has suffered in recent days, “even by those persons who unambiguously and without human respect should have supported him and his intervention.”

The bishop also maintains that Cardinal Sarah has “proven” by the new book that he is a “true help” to Pope Francis and the Church, and he expresses his hope that the Pope may “effectively and fruitfully” consider the cardinal’s contribution. 

He concludes his statement of support, assuring Cardinal Sarah that the “little ones” are grateful to him and close to him in prayer. 

In recent months, Bishop Schneider has offered his own forceful defense of priestly celibacy in the Latin Church. In his own new book, “Christus Vincit: Christ’s Triumph Over the Darkness of the Age,” His Excellency addresses those who advocate ordaining viri probati (i.e. sexually active married men), saying: “If you knew what the Catholic priesthood really is, you would never for any reason whatsoever advocate weakening or abolishing the apostolic tradition of priestly celibacy.”

Here below is the full statement of Bishop Athanasius Schneider, in support of Cardinal Sarah and his new book “From the Depths of Our Hearts.”

The book is now available for pre-order from Ignatius Press. 

* * *

In Support of Cardinal Sarah and his new book “From the Depths of Our Hearts”

From the depths of the heart, one must thank His Eminence Cardinal Robert Sarah for his heroic gesture in having written the book “From the Depths of Our Hearts” (original in French: “Des profondeurs de nos coeurs”), and above all for its theologically and pastorally extremely clear and apt content.

With his intervention, Cardinal Robert Sarah has given voice to many bishops, priests and simple faithful throughout the world, whose voice had been stifled by those administrative structures and influential groups within the life of the Church, which are applauded by the powerful worldwide network of the enemies of the Catholic Faith — the Faith of all times.

Some of the enemies of the true, Catholic and Apostolic Faith launched a lightning-fast attack against Cardinal Sarah by means of slanders and lies. This proves that Cardinal Sarah’s intervention was both highly necessary and very timely. One might say that the intervention of Cardinal Sarah has provoked, so to speak, the anger of hell. One might also compare the announcement of Cardinal Sarah’s new volume (and its specific content) with the shock-reaction that Herodes, the High priests, the Scribes and the whole of Jerusalem exhibited at the announcement by the Magi of the birth of the New King of Israel.

The Lord also asks from His Eminence Cardinal Robert Sarah the sacrifice of having unfortunately and enigmatically been abandoned even by those persons who unambiguously and without human respect should have supported him and his intervention.

One can say with deep conviction that Our Lord, the Church of all times, the Popes of all times, and all the true Catholics of our time, especially the “little ones” in the Church, are grateful to His Eminence and are close to him! 

One can wish that Our Holy Father Pope Francis will be grateful for the intervention of Cardinal Robert Sarah, which he made out of authentic love for the Church. One may also wish that Pope Francis will effectively and fruitfully consider the contribution of Cardinal Sarah, since he has so often encouraged free speech and the practice of an Apostolic parresia

By his intervention, Cardinal Robert Sarah has only fulfilled his grave duty and proven to have been a true help to the Pope and, in this manner, to the entire Church. One can believe that in doing so, he was moved neither by praise nor by threats (nec laudibus, nec timore), thus bearing witness to the symbolism of the red color of the cardinals’ vestments and of their title “Eminence.” 

The “little ones” in the Church are surely grateful and pray for His Eminence Cardinal Robert Sarah.

January 14, 2020

+ Athanasius Schneider, Auxiliary Bishop of Saint Mary in Astana


  athanasius schneider, catholic, from the depths of our hearts, pope benedict, robert sarah

News

Spanish cardinal: left-wing govt agenda will make ‘Spain cease being Spain’

‘Spain is without a compass; it is a mess, bewildered and without a project,’ wrote Cardinal Antonio Cañizares Llovera.
Tue Jan 14, 2020 - 2:54 pm EST
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Dorothy Cummings McLean Dorothy Cummings McLean Follow Dorothy
By Dorothy Cummings McLean

VALENCIA, Spain, January 14, 2020 (LifeSiteNews) – A cardinal and some of his fellow bishops have voiced misgivings about the secularizing government of Spain, warning that there is an “effort afoot to make Spain cease being Spain.” 

Cardinal Antonio Cañizares Llovera of Valencia has made public a letter he wrote to the socialist president of the parliament of Spain. Also called the Prime Minister, Pedro Sánchez has been in power since 2018. 

In the Epiphany letter, published on his archdiocese’s webpage on January 11, the cardinal expressed his worry about ongoing attempts to remove the Catholic faith from its place near the center of Spanish society. At stake are Catholic education, the lives of those vulnerable to euthanasia, and Church property the socialist government wishes to nationalize. The coalition government also wishes to promote sex education and “feminist policies.” 

“I have followed the [secularism] debates, which have caused me bewilderment and uncertainty, concern, and a certain unease,” Cañizares wrote. 

“Why? Because I have been able to verify that the situation we are experiencing is more critical and crucial than I thought and believed.”

The cardinal wrote that today “Spain is without a compass; it is a mess, bewildered and without a project.” 

“A divided Spain that returns to the era of division and confrontation,” he continued.  

“I have seen hatred, scowling faces and rejection, intransigence: a memory that makes us look to the future.”

Cañizares was referring to the Spanish Civil War (1936-1939) in which communists, anarchists, and Catholics waged battle, with atrocities occurring on all sides. More than 6,800 clergy and religious were murdered during the War, and as of June 2019, 1,915 have been beatified. The war ended with a victory by General Francisco Franco and the Church-friendly Nationalist faction. Franco remained in power as dictator until his death in 1975. There followed a relatively peaceful transition to a democracy under a constitutional monarchy. 

Cardinal Antonio Cañizares believes that this peace is being threatened. 

“The spirit of the democratic transition has been emptied out and forgotten,” he wrote.  

“That spirit of harmony and coexistence that gave rise to the basic law of Spain in the Constitution has been broken, and although it appeals to the rule of law, which is based on this basic law, respect for the right therein it offers us and is derived from it as the framework and criteria of our social relations and of the peoples that make up Spain, have not been taken into account: it is omitted.“

After defending the monarchy as a “pillar that unites and sustains the rule of law” and “a guarantor and arbitrator of the harmony, understanding and reconciliation among the Spanish people”, Cañizares marveled at the return of Marxism to Spain. 

“Marxist-communism, which seemed to have been banished after the fall of the Berlin Wall, is reborn and is certain to rule Spain,” the cardinal wrote.  

“Social democracy is disfigured, the sense of democracy is replaced by the imposition of a group-think, and by authoritarianism and absolutism that are incompatible with democracy and the recognition of the freedoms based on freedom of conscience and religion that I have seen threatened in the [secularizing] controversy.” 

Cañizares stated that euthanasia, which the secularists wish to impose in Spain, was discussed only “brutally and superficially.” He observed that there has not been, in the secularizing debates, much concern for the poor. 

The cardinal also warned that Spain could become the next Venezuela―and cease being Spain.

“There have been moments when I thought that the populism and what was happening in some countries of the Americas, such as Venezuela, was being brought into the chambers of the Parliament of Spain,” he wrote.  

“With great pain, I must warn you that there is an effort afoot to make Spain cease being Spain,” he continued.  

“The principles and values that have made it what it is since the days of the Visigoths, which undertook great deeds, such as America, no longer exist and do not count while Spain’s unity is under assault.” 

The cardinal assured the President/Prime Minister that he was praying for Spain. 

According to the Catholic Herald, other Spanish bishops have spoken out about the secularization debate. 

 “Uncertainty is drawn on the horizon, but we know the sun will rise behind the clouds and storms,” tweeted Archbishop Jesus Sanz Montes of Oviedo 

“The sun will bring back color after all the clumsiness, lies, and vanity which beset us.”

As the Herald also reported, the president of the Conference of Spanish Bishops, Cardinal Ricardo Blázquez Pérez, told Sánchez that the prelates would offer “loyal and generous collaboration” to help him “work in service of the common good.” Blázquez stated also that  “authentic religious life contributes to the general good of Spanish society.”

Editor's note: LifeSiteNews reporter Martin Barillas contributed to this report. 


  antonio canizares llovera, catholic, communism, marxism, pedro sánchez, spain

News

Proposed law in Germany would make every citizen an organ donor

The proposed law is being championed by Jens Spahn, the openly homosexual health minister of the current government. Even the German Bishops' Conference, known for its heterodoxy, is opposed to the bill.
Tue Jan 14, 2020 - 2:29 pm EST
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By Martin Bürger

GERMANY, January 14, 2020 (LifeSiteNews) – Pro-life organizations, as well as the German Bishops’ Conference, have come out strongly against a proposed law that would make everybody living in Germany an organ donor by default. 

Currently, people in Germany may sign up to be an organ donor, and only then would their organs be harvested at some point in the future. The new law would turn that process around: a person would have to object explicitly and in writing to being an organ donor. 

Members of parliament are set to debate the bill, as well as one alternative which is considered by pro-life groups to be much better, on Thursday, January 16, 2020, in Berlin. The vote is likely to take place before noon (local time). The official schedule allows for more than two and a half hours of debate.

The proposed law is being dubbed the “objection solution” (Widerspruchslösung), and is championed by Jens Spahn, the openly homosexual health minister of the current government. Like Chancellor Angela Merkel, Spahn is a member of the Christian Democratic Union.

LifeSiteNews talked to representatives of several pro-life organizations in Germany, who shared their concerns about the “objection solution.” They said the alternative proposal introduced by Annalena Baerbock of the Green Party and other members of parliament is much better. 

Under that proposal, nobody will automatically become an organ donor by default. 

All pro-life organizations criticized the lack of a consideration of the concept of brain death in the “objection solution.”

Medical doctors and scholars of various backgrounds maintain that only when a person’s heart stops beating and his breathing ceases for a determinate amount of time can it be said that death has truly occurred. According to those experts, the mere loss of brain function does not constitute death.

Degrading the human body ‘to a spare parts depot’

Alexandra Linder is the chairwoman of the German pro-life group “Bundesverband Lebensrecht” (BVL), an umbrella organization uniting many other German pro-life entities. Every year, BVL runs the March for Life in Berlin.

Linder told LifeSiteNews that the proposed law “contradicts the right of self-determination” and would lead to “a virtual obligation imposed by the state to give up your organs.”

While the term “self-determination” is often used by advocates of abortion or euthanasia, Linder uses it as a legal term based on the German constitution. Accordingly, the “right of self-determination” refers to the constitution’s assertion, “Every person shall have the right to free development of his personality insofar as he does not violate the rights of others or offend against the constitutional order or the moral law.”

Additionally, the “objection solution” no longer leaves relatives with the option to help decide if and when it is the case that organs may be harvested, explained Linder. They would only be asked if there ever was a written objection to organ donation.

Like BVL, “Ärzte für das Leben” (ÄfdL) mentioned the fact that the “objection solution” disregards the right of self-determination. Paul Cullen, president of this group of pro-life doctors, went even further in his comments, stating, “It infringes upon the right to physical integrity.” 

ÄfdL wrote a three-page letter to all members of parliament back in June 2019, urging them not to vote for the “objection solution.”

Cornelia Kaminski, head of “Aktion Lebensrecht für Alle” (ALfA) – another well-known German pro-life organization – emphasized that organ donation always has to be a voluntary act. As Kaminski explained, the “objection solution” would “lead to a socialization of the body and degrade [it] to a spare parts depot.”

“Christdemokraten für das Leben” (CDL) is the pro-life group within the Christian Democratic Union. Even though Jens Spahn is a member of the party, CDL emphasized they “reject [the bill] in its entirety.” Organ donation has to be voluntary, as the word “donation” suggests, CDL explained in a statement. 

The statement goes on, “In an open as well as free and democratic society, especially the process of dying should be removed from the active intervention of the state. The decision for or against an organ donation should remain voluntary.”

Cardinal Marx promotes organ donation but says Church has ‘significant legal and ethical concerns’ about proposed law

Even the German Bishops’ Conference, known within the Catholic Church for its heterodoxy, opposes the “objection solution.” 

Reinhard Cardinal Marx, the liberal head of the German Bishops’ Conference, said in September 2019, “Organ donation, which for many people is the only option to save their life, deserves highest recognition from a Christian perspective as an act of charity and solidarity beyond death.” 

Marx went on to quote Pope Francis, who had called organ donation “an act of social responsibility” and “an expression of universal brotherhood and sisterhood, uniting all men and women with each other.” 

At the same time, the Church has “significant legal and ethical concerns” about the “objection solution,” Marx acknowledged. 

He, too, emphasized that an organ donation has to be voluntary.

Even German bishops considered especially liberal, like Bishop Franz-Josef Overbeck of Essen, have come out against the “objection solution.” Overbeck has shown his openness to having women “priests,” as well ending priestly celibacy at least in some cases. 

The bishop has also apologized for a strong statement against homosexuality he made on German television many years ago. Back then, he said, “Homosexuality is sin.” Now, he advocates for a so-called development in moral theology concerning questions of homosexuality.

Problems with ‘brain death’ diagnosis

In December 2019, representatives of both the German Bishops’ Conference and the “Evangelical Church in Germany” wrote to all members of parliament, warning them about the problems of the “objection solution.”

The alternative law proposed by, among others, Annalena Baerbock of the Green Party and Ursula von der Leyen – now President of the European Commission in Brussels – was referred to by Cardinal Marx as “containing remarkable recommendations.”

The goal of the Baerbock proposal is to foster a regular examination of the question of organ donation. People would be encouraged to register their decision, either for or against organ donation, in a database. That decision could be changed at any time.

BVL chairwoman Linder characterized such an examination of the issue of organ donation as sensible, “since indeed everybody should think about it and talk to their relatives about what is desired in case they can’t make a decision on their own anymore.”

ALfA and ÄfdL agreed that the Baerbock proposal is the preferred bill to be voted on during the morning session of the debate on Thursday. 

Cornelia Kaminski of ALfA explained, “You don’t have to like the ‘nudging’ going along with this proposed law, but at the same time [it] doesn’t force anybody to make a decision.” The nudging refers to certain propositions of the law, such as the suggestion family doctors have a conversation concerning organ donation with patients every two years.

CDL, the pro-life group of Christian Democratic politicians, “explicitly supports” the Baerbock proposal, pointing out that the relatives still are involved in the process of somebody being an organ donor.

Both the law proposed by Jens Spahn as well as that proposed by Annalena Baerbock never mention the term “brain death,” let alone its difficulty.

The statement given to LifeSiteNews by CDL specifies that in many cases, the moment of death is equated with what is called “brain death.” However, CDL clarifies, experts have for a long time criticized reducing a human being only to their brain. 

The statement describes a recent case in Germany, where a 29-year-old woman had lost all brain function in the wake of a car crash. Doctors had realized the woman was nine weeks pregnant and kept her alive, even though she had been open to organ donation in the past. 20 weeks later, she suddenly gave birth to a healthy baby girl. 

“If she had been a corpse, that would’ve hardly been possible,” CDL comments sarcastically.

Paul Cullen of ÄfdL, the group of pro-life physicians, expects the Spahn proposal to have the most votes, “But the result is not one hundred percent certain.” At the moment, 226 members of parliament have indicated their support for the “objection solution,” while the Baerbock proposal has 194 supporters. There are 709 members of parliament, but usually, only a fraction are there for debates and voting.


  catholic, franz-josef overbeck, german bishops conference, germany, organ donation, organ harvesting, reinhard marx

News

Ireland Catholic schools cancel talks by US chastity speaker who opposes homosexuality, contraception

Following the cancellations, an LGBT group issued a statement to Twitter thanking 'everyone for their support and solidarity in this matter'
Tue Jan 14, 2020 - 11:16 am EST
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Jason Evert
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By Paul Smeaton

January 14, 2020 (LifeSiteNews) – A number of upcoming talks in Ireland by well-known Catholic chastity speaker Jason Evert — two of them at Catholic schools — have been abruptly canceled, allegedly because the speaker upholds Catholic teaching on homosexuality and contraception. 

Evert is a founder of The Chastity Project and gives talks around the world on sexual ethics - discussing issues such as marriage, dating, pornography, homosexuality and contraception. He and his wife Crystalina claim to have spoken to “more than one million people on six continents about the virtue of chastity”.

The Irish Times has reported Jan. 12 that several of Evert’s talks due to be given in Ireland have canceled “after concerns were raised about his views on homosexuality and contraception”.

The Irish Times cites Evert’s book Pure Manhood and a section of it which says: “the homosexual act is disordered, much like contraceptive sex between heterosexuals. Both acts are directed against God’s natural purpose for sex - babies and bonding.”

The Catholic Church teaches that homosexual acts “intrinsically disordered" since they are “contrary to the natural law.”

“They close the sexual act to the gift of life. They do not proceed from a genuine affective and sexual complementarity. Under no circumstances can they be approved,” states the Catechism of the Catholic Church. 

In May 2015, Ireland held a referendum in which the people voted to legalize same-sex “marriage.”

According to the Times’ report, talks at two Dublin Catholic schools, a Catholic conference called ‘Ignite 2020’ and a talk at hotel have all been canceled. Events scheduled at a residential Catholic community for young people in County Waterford and at a Catholic parish in Dublin are still due to go ahead.

No information was given in the report as to why the events at the Catholic schools, or the hotel were canceled. 

But the LGBT Society at University College Dublin (UCD) where the the ‘Ignite 2020’ conference is taking place issued a statement on Twitter that said that Evert’s talk was “putting the safety of UCD’s LGBTQ+ community at risk” and that his speaking at the event could cause “lasting and damaging effects on the mental wellbeing of LGBTQ+ students.”

Following the cancellation of the event, the LGBT group issued another statement to Twitter thanking “everyone for their support and solidarity in this matter”.


  catholic, chastity, contraception, homosexuality, ireland, jason evert

News

Pope Benedict’s publisher stands by listing him as co-author on new book defending priestly celibacy

Cardinal Sarah and Pope Benedict have come under sharp attack since news of the book surfaced.
Tue Jan 14, 2020 - 11:05 am EST
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By Diane Montagna

PETITION: Support Cardinal Sarah's Defense of Priestly Celibacy! Sign the petition here

ROME, January 14, 2020 (LifeSiteNews) — As conflicting stories about the genesis of Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI and Cardinal Robert Sarah’s new book on priestly celibacy have continued to swirl on social media today, Benedict’s English publisher has weighed in with a statement insisting they will continue to list the two prelates as co-authors.

Critics of the new volume, titled From the Depths of Our Hearts: Priesthood, Celibacy, and the Crisis of the Catholic Church, took to social media claiming the book “opposed” Pope Francis, questioned Benedict’s right to express his views, suggested the Pope emeritus was “manipulated,” and accused Cardinal Sarah of showing “contempt” for married priests in the Eastern rite. 

This morning Cardinal Robert Sarah, prefect of the Congregation for Divine Worship and the Discipline of the Sacraments, responded with an official statement (see full text below), in which he explained the genesis of the book. 

Regarding Benedict’s knowledge and approval of the book, Cardinal Sarah wrote: “After various exchanges in view of the development of the book, on November 19, I finally sent a manuscript, the cover, a common introduction and conclusion, the text of Benedict XVI and my own text.”

The cardinal added: “On November 25, the Pope Emeritus expressed his great satisfaction with the texts written in common, and he added the following: ‘For my part, I agree that the text should be published in the form you have foreseen.’”

He also published letters from Benedict XVI that corroborate his official statement (see full texts of the letters below). 

Cardinal Sarah concluded, saying: 

The polemic that has sought to smear me … by insinuating that Benedict XVI was not informed of the publication of the book ‘From the Depths of Our Hearts’ is deeply abject. I sincerely forgive all those who slander me or who want to oppose me to Pope Francis. My attachment to Benedict XVI remains intact and my filial obeisance to Pope Francis remains absolute.

Conflicting stories

But in comments this afternoon to the Italian news agency ANSA, Benedict XVI’s personal secretary, Archbishop Georg Gänswein, said he has “acted on instructions from the pope emeritus and asked Cardinal Robert Sarah to contact the book’s publisher and request that they remove Benedict XVI’s name as co-author of the book, and remove his signature from the introduction and conclusion.” 

The German prelate acknowledged that “the pope emeritus knew that the cardinal was preparing a book and he sent him a text on the priesthood authorizing him to use it as he wished.” But contrary to Cardinal Sarah’s statement, he claimed that Benedict “did not approve a project for a co-authored book, and he had not seen or authorized the cover.”

“It is a misunderstanding that does not raise questions about Cardinal Sarah’s good faith,” Archbishop Ganswein said.   

The inconsistency between Cardinal Sarah’s official statement and Archbishop Gänswein’s comments to ANSA essentially concerns whether Benedict co-authored the book, approved the entire text (including the introduction and conclusion) and saw the cover.

Following Gänswein’s statement to ANSA, Cardinal Sarah stood by his official statement, tweeting: “I confirm that I was able to speak this morning with Archbishop Georg Gänswein. This communiqué remains my one and only version of the course of events. I also had a conversation with the management of Fayard to implement the specific requests of Archbishop Gänswein.”

Ignatius Press weighs in

Ignatius Press, which is publishing the volume in Engish, has also stood by the co-authorship and cover. In a statement released this afternoon, Mark Brumley, President of Ignatius Press, said: “Ignatius Press published the text as we received it from the French publisher Fayard. Fayard is the publisher with whom we have collaborated on three other Cardinal Sarah titles. The text we received indicates the two authors are Benedict XVI and Cardinal Sarah. That text also indicates that Benedict XVI co-authored an introduction and a conclusion with Cardinal Sarah, as well as his own chapter on the priesthood, wherein he describes how his exchanges with Cardinal Sarah gave him the strength to complete what would have gone unfinished.”

Brumley continues: “Given that, according to Benedict XVI’s correspondence and Cardinal Sarah’s statement, the two men collaborated on this book for several months, that none of the essays have appeared elsewhere, and that a joint work as defined by the Chicago Manual of Style is  ‘a work prepared by two or more authors with the intention that their contribution be merged into inseparable or interdependent parts of a unitary whole’, Ignatius Press considers this a coauthored publication.”

“Cardinal Sarah indicates the content of the book remains unchanged,” the statement concludes. “That content, as noted, includes a coauthored introduction, a chapter by Benedict XVI, and a conclusion coauthored by Benedict XVI and Cardinal Sarah.” 

The book is in transit to French bookshops. 

Here below is an English translation of Cardinal Robert Sarah’s official statement and Benedict XVI’s letters.

 

Statement by His Eminence Cardinal Robert Sarah

14 January 2020

Last September 5, after a visit to the monastery Mater Ecclesiae where Benedict XVI lives, I wrote to the Pope Emeritus to ask him if it was possible for him to compose a text on the Catholic priesthood, with special attention to celibacy. I explained to him that I myself had begun a reflection in prayer. I added: “I imagine that you will think that your reflections might not be opportune because of the polemics they might provoke in the media, but I am convinced that the whole Church needs this gift, which could be published at Christmas or at the beginning of the year 2020.”

On September 20, the Pope Emeritus thanked me by writing to me that he too, on his part, even before receiving my letter, had begun to write a text on this subject, but that his strength no longer allowed him to edit a theological text. However, my letter had encouraged him to resume this long work. He added that he would transmit it to me when the translation into Italian was completed. 

On 12 October, during the synod of bishops on the Amazon, the Pope emeritus gave me a long text in a confidential envelope, the fruit of his work over the past months. Seeing the extent of this writing, both in substance and in form, I immediately thought that it would not be possible to propose it to a newspaper or magazine, given its volume and quality. So, I immediately proposed to the Pope Emeritus the publication of a book that would be an immense good for the Church, integrating his own text into mine. After various exchanges in view of the development of the book, on November 19, I finally sent a manuscript, the cover, a common introduction and conclusion, the text of Benedict XVI and my own text. On November 25, the Pope Emeritus expressed his great satisfaction with the texts written in common, and he added the following: “For my part, I agree that the text should be published in the form you have foreseen.”

On December 3, I went to the Mater Ecclesiae Monastery to thank the Pope Emeritus once again for placing his trust in me. I explained to him that our book would be printed during the Christmas holidays, that it would be published on Wednesday January 15, and that I would come to bring it to him at the beginning of January on my return from a trip to my native country. 

The polemic that has sought to smear me for several hours now, by insinuating that Benedict XVI was not informed of the publication of the book ‘From the Depths of our Hearts’ is deeply abject. I sincerely forgive all those who slander me or who want to oppose me to Pope Francis. My attachment to Benedict XVI remains intact and my filial obeisance to Pope Francis remains absolute.

 

LETTERS FROM BENEDICT XVI TO CARDINAL ROBERT SARAH
 

Benedict XVI

Pope emeritus

                                                                                                Vatican City

                                                                                                20 September 2019

 

To His Eminence the Most Rev. 

Cardinal Robert SARAH

Prefect of the Congregation for Divine Worship

and the Discipline of the Sacraments

00120   Vatican City

Your Eminence, 

Thank you for your letter of September 5 and for your prayers for the priesthood in these difficult times!

Prior to your letter, I had already begun to write down some reflections on the priesthood. But in writing I always felt that my forces no longer allow me to edit a theological text. 

Then your letter came with the unexpected question of a text on the priesthood, with particular attention to celibacy. So, I resumed by work and will pass on to you the text, once it is translated from German into Italian. I leave it to you [to determine] if these notes, whose insufficiency I feel strongly, can be of any use.

Following your question, I impart my apostolic blessing to you, to your collaborators, and to all your loved ones.

                                                                                                Yours in the Lord,

                                                                                                Benedict XVI

***

Vatican City

                                                                                                12 October 2019

To His Eminence the Most Rev. 

Cardinal Robert SARAH

Prefect of the Congregation forDivine Worship

and the Discipline of the Sacraments

00120   Vatican City

Your Eminence, 

Finally, I may pass on my Thoughts on the Priesthood. I shall leave it to you if you find any use in my poor thoughts. 

I greet you cordially, thankful for your service to the Holy Church. 

                                                                                                Yours in the Lord,

                                                                                                Benedict XVI

***

Benedict XVI

Pope emeritus

                                                                                                Vatican City

                                                                                                25 November 2019

To His Eminence the Most Rev. 

Cardinal Robert SARAH

Prefect of the Congregation for Divine Worship

and the Discipline of the Sacraments

00120   Vatican City

Your Eminence, 

With all my heart I would like to say thank you for the text added to my contribution and for all the work you have done. It touched me deeply that you understood my last intentions: I had actually written 7 pages clarifying the methodology of my text and I am truly happy to say that you were able to say the essential in half a page. So, I do not see a need to send you the 7 pages, since you have expressed the essentials in half a page. 

For my part, the text can be published in the form that you have foreseen. 

I am happy to see you before your departure for your homeland and to express my best wishes for your double jubilee. 

Thank you also for the three volumes of your dialogue with Monsieur Diat!

In communion of prayer, 

                                                                                                Yours in the Lord,

                                                                                                Benedict XVI


  catholic, celibacy, from the depths of our hearts, georg ganswein, pope benedict xvi, robert sarah

News

Trans activist who demanded women wax his genitals attacks reporter

'J. Yaniv just punched me in the back of the head. Just spoke to police.'
Tue Jan 14, 2020 - 9:37 am EST
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Screen shot of Jonathan 'Jessica' Yaniv attacking Rebel reporter Jan. 13, 2020 outside of court in Surrey, British Columbia. Rebel / Twitter screen grab
Dorothy Cummings McLean Dorothy Cummings McLean Follow Dorothy
By Dorothy Cummings McLean

January 15, 2020 update: Watch extended footage of Yaniv's altercation with Rebel reporter here

SURREY, British Columbia, January 14, 2020 (LifeSiteNews) ― A well-known Canadian transgender activist, infamous for bringing human rights complaints against women who refused to wax his genitals, was caught on camera attacking a journalist outside a court.  

Jonathan “Jessica” Yaniv was filmed Jan. 13 leaving a courthouse in Surrey, B.C. by The Rebel reporter Keean Bexte. Bexte posted the video of their subsequent altercation, adding that 

Yaniv, 32, had punched him. 

“J. Yaniv just punched me in the back of the head,” Bexte tweeted. 

“Just spoke to police. Luckily there are two security cameras directly overhead at the courthouse. I need an Advil.”  

The video shows Yaniv veering from his path to confront the reporter, who is over 10 feet away, while waving his arm, shouting and cursing, and punching in Bexte’s direction. The audio plays the sounds of Bexte grunting in pain and shouting “Stop.”   

The video clip has now been seen over a million times. 

Bexte told online newspaper The Daily Wire that he had only one question for Yaniv― whether or not he would plead guilty. 

“Within several seconds, Yaniv charged me and punched the back of my head while holding me down,” he added. 

“Police have been reluctant to charge him before, and so I’m speaking to legal counsel to figure out my options to make sure this menace sees justice.”

Yaniv had appeared before the court on a prohibited weapons charge. The transgender activist had displayed a taser to another transgender activist during a social media debate about Yaniv’s complaints to the British Columbia Human Rights Tribunal against a number of beauticians. The activist, who has not had so-called “bottom surgery,” took offense when the aestheticians refused to wax his male genitalia.  

At one point during the hour-long Facebook show, Yaniv disappears momentarily, then returns and says, “I don’t need to be scared in my own house, that I’m going to get (expletive) attacked,” before raising the Taser and activating it on screen.

The Blaze reported that Yaniv had apparently been disturbed by his interlocutor saying that young girls in bathroom stalls needed to carry pepper spray to protect themselves from people like Yaniv.

For at least a year prior to his human rights complaints, screenshots of Yaniv’s social media posts showing his interest in the menstruation of 10- and 12-year-old girls and whether he would see them unclothed in women’s change rooms circulated online. 

The Gender Trender blog alleged that in May, June, and July 2018 a number of teenage girls took to Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram to claim Yaniv “pretended to be transgender” in order to access private Facebook groups for adolescent girls “where he spewed his creepy sexual fetishes about young women, menstruation, toilet and locker room fantasies.”

Last July, Jessica Rumpel filed a child sexual exploitation report against Yaniv with CyberTips for allegedly sexually harassing her when she was between the ages of 14 and 15. 

“Yaniv’s reported online activity reflects a pederastic interest in young teenage girls that predated his interest in transgenderism. The fact that he now calls himself a ‘proud lesbian’ is indicative of his continued interest in females,” noted Doug Mainwaring of LifeSiteNews when reporting on Rumpel’s complaint. 

Last December Yaniv shared his shock and confusion on Twitter when a gynaecologist refused to see him.  

“So a gynaecologist office that I got referred to literally told me today that ‘we don't serve transgender patients’," he stated.

“And me, being me, I'm shocked.. and confused... and hurt,” he continued.

“Are they allowed to do that, legally? Isn't that against the college practices?”

Last October, Yaniv began a Human Rights court action against a beautician who refused to wax his legs, despite having lost that same month a case at the Human Rights Tribunal in which he had brought a "discrimination" complaint against about a dozen beauticians who refused to wax his genitals. 

"Human rights legislation does not require a service provider to wax a type of genitals they are not trained for and have not consented to wax," the decision stated.  

The decision further found that Yaniv “engaged in improper conduct,” "filed complaints for improper purposes," and that Yaniv’s testimony was “disingenuous and self-serving.”

Editor's note: LifeSiteNews' Lianne Laurence contributed to this report. 


  jonathan yaniv, keean bexte, rebel media, rebel news, transgenderism

Opinion

Radical enviro group: Green tech not ‘feasible,’ should be used to ‘stop global economy’

In an unusual show of progressive candor, a group called Deep Green Resistance openly acknowledges what skeptical scientists have been saying for more than two decades.
Tue Jan 14, 2020 - 9:36 pm EST
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John Eidson
By John Eidson

January 14, 2020 (American Thinker) — Independent physicist John Droz, Jr. alerted me to the website of Deep Green Resistance (DGR), an international environmental organization that calls for the total destruction of what it refers to as the "global industrial economy," AKA capitalism. Given the group's hard-left credentials, its call for dismantling capitalism throughout the world is not surprising.

What is surprising is that in an unusual show of progressive candor, Deep Green Resistance openly acknowledges what skeptical scientists have been saying for more than two decades: that renewable energy is a government-backed hoax that enriches big corporations — and green energy investors like Al Gore — at the expense of taxpayers and the environment. If you find that admission hard to believe, please keep reading. The questions and answers below are verbatim from the FAQ page on the organization's website.

Will green technology save the planet?

No. Wind turbines, solar PV panels, and the grid itself are all manufactured using cheap energy from fossil fuels. When fossil fuel costs begin to rise such highly manufactured items will simply cease to be feasible.

Solar panels and wind turbines aren't made out of nothing. They are made out of metals, plastics, and chemicals. These products have been mined out of the ground, transported, processed, manufactured. Each stage leaves behind a trail of devastation: habitat destruction, water contamination, colonization, toxic waste, slave labor, greenhouse gas emissions, wars, and corporate profits.

The basic ingredients for renewables are the same materials that are ubiquitous in industrial products, like cement and aluminum. No one is going to make cement in any quantity without using the energy of fossil fuels. And aluminum? The mining itself is a destructive and toxic nightmare from which riparian communities will not awaken in anything but geologic time.

From beginning to end, so called "renewable energy" and other "green technologies" lead to the destruction of the planet. These technologies are rooted in the same industrial extraction and production processes that have rampaged across the world for the last 150 years.

We are not concerned with slightly reducing the harm caused by industrial civilization; we are interested in stopping that harm completely. Doing so will require dismantling the global industrial economy, which will render impossible the creation of these technologies.

Will renewable energy save the economy?

Renewable energy technologies rely heavily on government subsidies, taken from taxpayers and given directly to large corporations like General Electric, BP, Samsung, and Mitsubishi. While the scheme pads their bottom lines, it doesn't help the rest of us.

Further, this is the wrong question to ask. The industrial capitalist economy is dispossessing and impoverishing billions of humans and killing the living world. Renewable energy depends on centralized capital and power imbalance. We don't benefit from saving that system.

Instead of advocating for more industrial technology, we need to move to local economies based on community decision-making and what our local landbases can provide sustainably. And we need to stop the global economy on which renewable energy depends.

"Stopping the global economy" means destroying the capitalist system that created here in America the most widespread prosperity the world has ever known. That a progressive eco-group would admit that the true agenda behind the push for renewable energy has nothing to do with "saving the planet" and everything to do with destroying capitalism is quite remarkable. To reinforce its position that renewable energy is a hoax, DGR's website has a cartoon that shows dollar bills being sucked from a wind turbine directly into the pocket of a fat cat investor in subsidized green energy projects.

The Elmer Gantry of renewable energy

Few insiders have profited more from taxpayer-backed renewable energy projects than Al Gore. When he left the vice presidency in 2001, his net worth was estimated at $1 million to $2 million. Since then, his wealth has skyrocketed to $300 million, and if the climate change legislation he advocates is enacted, the former vice president stands to become a billionaire. Much of his enviable fortune has come from being an inside investor in government-backed renewable energy projects, many of which went belly up after the insiders made off with millions, leaving hardworking U.S. taxpayers stuck with the bill.

Like all wealthy eco-preachers, the Elmer Gantry of renewable energy uses his immense wealth to indulge in lavish living. When asked by Rep. Marsha Blackburn during his 2009 testimony before Congress whether he personally profits from his advocacy of global warming, Pastor Al professed a vow of poverty, and if you've never seen video of the tense encounter, you don't want to miss it: "Every penny I have made I have put into a non-profit deal, the Alliance for Climate Protection, to spread awareness of why we have to take on this challenge. And Congresswoman, if you believe the reason I have been working on this issue for 30 years is out of greed, you do not know me."

Turned out Rep. Blackburn knows him quite well. As the greedy owner of a gargantuan green energy fortune, Pastor Al looked her squarely in the eye and denied making even a penny of profit. If every penny he makes goes into a non-profit deal, how did he end up with $300 million? The same way his alter ego pilfered money from the Lord: by concealing his true stripes.

As the social Utopians at Deep Green Resistance openly acknowledge, the push for a "green economy" is a scam that enriches big corporations and fat-cat investors like Al Gore. Shortly after teen climate activist Greta Thunberg gave an emotion-charged speech at the U.N. last September, I wrote about the renewable energy hoax in "The Cynical Plot behind Global Warming Hysteria." If not for a totally corrupt Western media, two things would have happened years ago: man-made global warming theory would have been blown out of the water, and Pastor Al would have been called out as the self-righteous hypocrite he is.

An electrical engineering graduate of Georgia Tech and now retired, John Eidson is a freelance writer in Atlanta.

Published with permission from the American Thinker.


  al gore, capitalism, climate change, environmentalism, global warming

Opinion

More and more ‘transgender’ people regret surgery, want to return to a normal life

LGBT advocates are continuing their campaign to ostracize 'transgender' people who want their appearance once again to reflect their sex.
Tue Jan 14, 2020 - 9:29 pm EST
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Supawadee56 / Shutterstock.com
Robyn Dolgin
By Robyn Dolgin

January 14, 2020 (American Thinker) — It is a startling reaction, but LGBT advocates are continuing their campaign to ostracize "transgender" people who want their appearance once again to reflect their sex.

Charlie Evans fits the profile of a "former transgender" who felt shunned by LGBT members and was labeled a "traitor." She naively set out to help teenagers avoid making the same "horrendous mistakes" she had made when starting to "transition" at age 17. She began living as a boy, binding her chest and shaving her head.

The floodgates to this bizarre phenomenon opened in the aftermath of Evans appearing on a popular cable program, Sky News, in the United Kingdom. Hundreds of "former transsexuals" who (also) "feel like a social contagion," says Evans, had contacted her wanting to do the same thing. 

Evans further enraged leftists by founding a nonprofit that recognizes the extent of the problem spelled out in its name, "Detransition Advocacy Network," in England. Transsexuals sought out Evans for support, calling from countries around the world.

Pulling back the curtain on Evans's regrets, and those of others like her, couldn't come at a worse time for the LGBT community. They literally can't afford to have hundreds of "retransitioning" transsexuals come between them and their dream of getting more taxpayers to foot the bill for so-called sex change procedures.

Apparently, "former transsexuals" fail to fit their romanticized narrative on how to achieve "gender inclusivity." Leftist advocates can't be bothered with examining the tragic details of devastated health and ruined lives of transsexuals, but rather must stick with their ideology foisted on the public.

Seeking the gold standard of approval, transgender advocates have prominently displayed the ACLU's statement summing up their economic goal: "A general recognition in America that transition-related care is basic healthcare for transgender people," reads the ACLU "blog of rights ... [and] that no one should be denied coverage."

Most politicians know which way the ideological argument is going, and they're jumping on board the gender-activist train — and not without your tax dollars.

Massachusetts's former governor Deval Patrick successfully forced taxpayers to subsidize sex-obscuring surgery by expanding Medicaid coverage. Why stop there? Gov. Patrick was lauded by leftists for his state's unprecedented "significant advances" in health care legislation: that translates to mean he has targeted the deepest pockets in the medical insurance industry.

Private health care insurers are now prohibited from denying the claims of members who are suffering from sexual dysphoria and undergoing "sex change" operations, according to the Massachusetts Division of Insurance.

This is the tip of the subsidy iceberg. Oregon and California have led the campaign to offer Medicaid and Medicare (respectively) funds for sex-obscuring procedures.

Now even elderly patients can opt for gender-related health care coverage through Medicare. (Requests are handled on a case-by-case basis, according to the government website.) No doubt, voters can anticipate thousands of pages more of legislation coming down the subsidy pike in 2020.

Taxpayers need to question more than subsidies for sex-obscuring operations; they need to ask whether their politicians are keeping up with serious and lasting risks of transgender procedures.

One physician in Los Angeles addressed the obvious but rarely discussed "dangerous" pre-treatment and surgical regimen. "A patient administered high doses of sex-change [sic] hormones must factor in the potentially catastrophic effects of totally disrupting the body's normal physiologic function," he says. The FDA has already received 24,000 reports of adverse reactions to cross-sex hormones, which now include puberty-blockers for children who "identify" as the opposite sex.

One world health organization has admitted that sex-obscuring treatments "can cause permanent bodily impairment and are generally irreversible," according to the World Professional Association for Transgender Health (WPATH).

Mounting clinical evidence reveals the fallacy of the "rainbow dream" to safely "transition." That means gender ideology cannot save transsexuals who are now suffering from ruined health and experiencing more serious health disorders (including cancer, diabetes, severe osteoporosis, etc.)

It's rare, but cases of gender regret are surfacing in the media.

Mike Penner, a writer for the Los Angeles Times, returned to the newsroom as Christine Daniels after surgery. Colleagues were very accepting, even after Mike decided to return to presenting himself according to his true sex. Tragically, the reporter became another transgender statistic. He died by suicide in 2009.

The numbers mounted, according to nonprofit websites. Walt Heyer — who had his sex-obscuring surgery reversed — thinks this phenomenon is far more common than what the public has been led to believe. That is why he launched the website https://sexchangeregret.com.

"People don't fare well in life experience after undergoing gender surgery," Heyer tells National Review. "So it's always kind of troubling for me why we would pay for something ... that is actually [going to] be more harmful than if we left the person alone and dealt with the psychological component."

His sixth book, Trans Life Survivors, compiles 30 life experiences of transgender regret, capturing the painful experiences of those caught up in today's "transmania." The most heartbreaking are "survivors" who felt pressured into gender "transition" by social media, political correctness, and even public school officials.

"Blair," who holds a Guinness World Record for the most so-called sex change surgeries, underwent a shocking 167 procedures. He, and others, are left feeling as though the transgender movement has become a sickening money-making industry.

None of this can be found on the ACLU "blog of rights."

A note to taxpayers: Generally, taxpayers remain clueless about the costs attached to gender "reassignment" surgery. Procedures now federally subsidized include: basic "male-to-female" surgery ranges from $25,000 to $50,000, including testicle removal, breast augmentation, and genital surgery; and "female-to-male" ranges from $30,000 to $50,000, covering mastectomy, reconstruction of chest, areolar reduction, and genital surgery, according to the Philadelphia Center for Transgender Surgery.

Published with permission from the American Thinker.


  american civil liberties union, gender dysphoria, lgbt tyranny, sex change regret, transgenderism, walt heyer

Blogs

Irony: In pro-abortion Ireland, dairy is bad because it ‘takes babies from their mothers’

'1500 B.C.: worship animals, sacrifice babies; 2020 A.D.: worship animals, sacrifice babies.'
Tue Jan 14, 2020 - 9:20 am EST
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Peter Kwasniewski
Peter Kwasniewski Peter Kwasniewski Follow Dr. Peter
By Dr. Peter Kwasniewski

January 14, 2020 (LifeSiteNews) — My family and I had the blessed opportunity to spend the twelve days of Christmas this year at Silverstream Priory, a Benedictine monastery just outside Dublin, where the monks praise God in chanted psalms seven times a day and once in the night and celebrate the traditional Latin Mass with great beauty and reverence.

Although we spent most of our time at the monastery, we made a few trips farther afield. One day I took my daughter in to Dublin to see the National Gallery of Ireland, which boasts an exquisite collection of great paintings, including masterpieces by Vermeer, Caravaggio, Velázquez, Rembrandt, and Turner. We also visited Trinity College for an informative exhibit on the Book of Kells and related Gospel books. In the late afternoon we enjoyed tea with Pat Kenny, who has done much to promote the heroic example and spiritual doctrine of Fr. Willie Doyle (1873–1917), especially through a dedicated website.

As we started our day walking from the Pearse train station to the Gallery, I beheld a large billboard, provocatively stationed over a café at which several gallons of milk must surely be gone through each day. I really could not believe my eyes and had to take a picture of it. The billboard stated: “DAIRY TAKES BABIES FROM THEIR MOTHERS.” The mother cow, with bovine pride, licks her cute calf, from which she is soon to be parted so evil humans can drink the surplus milk.

I subsequently learned that this billboard started going up around Ireland just a few months after the abortion referendum legalized abortion by a landslide majority. Apparently, abortion — the ultimate example of taking babies away from their mothers — should be legal, while presumably dairy farms should be illegal. Such is the twisted logic that obtains when faith and reason alike are abandoned in favor of the postmodern delirium of “me, myself, and I.” As G.K. Chesterton once almost quipped (but didn’t quite): “When a man stops believing in God, he doesn’t believe in nothing, he believes in anything.”

The billboard informs us that we can obtain a “free vegan guide” from www.goveganworld.com. A glance at that website brought up a title-page video that proclaims: “We all have the right not to be used or killed regardless of species.” Alas, this “right” seems to obtain only with subhuman species.

I am reminded of something Chesterton writes in his masterpiece Orthodoxy:

Darwinism can be used to back up two mad moralities, but it cannot be used to back up a single sane one. The kinship and competition of all living creatures can be used as a reason for being insanely cruel or insanely sentimental; but not for a healthy love of animals. On the evolutionary basis you may be inhumane, or you may be absurdly humane; but you cannot be human.

Chesterton’s “two mad moralities” are writ large in modern Western societies: insane sentimentality toward brute animals and insane cruelty toward the most vulnerable and innocent members of the human race. Humane to the point of inventing rights where they do not exist; inhumane to the point of undermining the most fundamental right that does exist, and without which all other rights are meaningless. If we cannot even treat one another humanely, what does that suggest about our conception of the universe we inhabit?

We see fulfilled before our eyes this wise statement from the Second Vatican Council: “Without the Creator, the creature would disappear. … When God is forgotten, the creature itself grows unintelligible” (Gaudium et Spes, n. 36). Take away God, in whose image and likeness man is created, uniquely among material beings, and you take away awareness of his very distinctiveness and dignity. Instead of seeing vices as the true cause of human misery and the rape of nature, with virtues (above all, the virtue of religion) as the only cure for these diseases of fallen humanity, you begin to see human beings themselves not as blessings to be welcomed, but as evils to be thwarted. This is what it means for the creature to “disappear” and “grow unintelligible.” Male and female are confused…the ranks and relations of animal species are confused…all is confused, in a false exaltation of “mother nature” and a false denigration of the noblest being on the face of the Earth.

A friend sardonically put it to me this way: “1500 B.C.: worship animals, sacrifice babies; 2020 A.D.: worship animals, sacrifice babies.” The Bible says nihil novi sub sole: there’s nothing new under the sun. That includes the moral and metaphysical darkness from which Christianity rescued mankind, and to which mankind is doomed to return when Christ, true man and true God, is rejected.

Come to think of it, the Bible’s statement has one exception: Christ Himself, the truly new thing under the sun, the New Adam, the New Song, Bridegroom of the New Jerusalem. He alone can say: “Behold, I make all things new” (Rev 21:5). May He, in His mercy, by the prayers of Our Lady of Knock, restore Ireland to renewed faith in the only one who can save us from the oldness of sin.


  abortion, ireland, veganism, vegetarianism