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Archive for January, 2012

What is the impact of demographic decline on a country’s economy and social security system?  Does abortion cause cities to decline? For instance, Diana Schaub suggests this in a Baltimore Sun article titled: “A hidden cause of Baltimore’s population loss: abortion”.

Is that an overstatement? What is for sure, is that with an 86% abortion rate, there is no way Baltimore can recover.

As western governments seek solutions to the problems created by falling birth rates, Schaub suggests that Baltimore “should look within” for a solution, rather than trying to attract immigration.

Perhaps European countries should do the same before they become unrecognizable.

Rick Santorum has been criticized for recently blaming the European financial crisis on the demographic winter on the old continent. Mark Steyn comments on this in The Corner:

Is it remotely likely that the debts run up by 100 Mediterranean deadbeats will be repaid by 42 Mediterranean deadbeats?

The Germans, French and Dutch have healthier trend lines, but only because, as you note, they’ve imported huge populations that will inflict profound transformational changes. That, too, threatens the basic social compact: A decade or two on, is it likely that Ahmed and Mohammed will agree to be ever more punitively taxed to maintain the lavish retirements of Fritz and François?

When 100 grandparents have 42 grandchildren, how do you grow your economy in an ever shrinking market? Where once were 100 babies for your diaper business, now there are only 42. And, fifteen years on, where once were 100 teens for your caterwauling gangsta rap record company, now a mere 42. And then only 42 potential car buyers, and maybe 21 home owners… You need a hell of an export market to beat back the arithmetic of a remorselessly withering customer base.

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Overpopulation is a myth. This myth has caused human rights abuses around the world, forced population control, denied medicines to the poor, and targeted attacks on ethnic minorities and women.

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While some Christian denominations take a narrow and limited view of the salvation of non-members, the Catholic Church recognizes the possibility of salvation for non-Catholics, and even non-Christians. (more…)

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Pocket Catholic Dictionary – Fr John Hardon SJ

Justification -. The process of a sinner becoming justified or made right with God. As defined by the Council of Trent.

“Justification is the change from the condition in which a person is born as a child of the first Adam into a state of grace and adoption among the children of God through the Second Adam, Jesus Christ our Savior” (Denzinger 1524)

Etymology of Justification comes from the Latin justus: just + facere: to make, do: justificatio.

A Catholic who is in the state of grace i.e. not in the state of mortal sin is justified. Depending on the sins from which a person is to be delivered, there are different kinds of justification:

1- An infant is justified by baptism and the faith of the one who requests or confers the sacrament.

2-Adults are justified for the first time either by personal faith, sorrow for sin and baptism, or by the perfect love of God, which is at least an implicit baptism of desire.

3- Adults who have sinned gravely after being justified can receive justification by sacramental absolution or perfect contrition for their sins.

SANCTIFICATION. Being made holy. (Etymology from Latin sanctificare: to make holy.

1- The first sanctification takes place at baptism, by which the love of God is infused by the Holy Spirit (Romans 5:5)…

2- The second sanctification is a lifelong process in which a person already in the state of grace grows in the possession of grace and in likeness to God by faithfully corresponding with divine inspirations.

3- The third sanctification takes place when a person enters heaven and becomes totally and irrevocably united with God in the beatific vision.

The following is from The Salvation Controversy – James Akin.

SALVATION. Salvation basically means being saved.

In the New Testament the focus is primarily on the idea of eternal salvation – salvation from the eternal consequences of sin (hell.)

In the Old Testament the term salvation often used to refer to temporal dangers – war, famine, disease, and death (physical rather than eternal.)

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Amidst so many allegations on the issue of the alleged  involvement of the Catholic Church with the Nazi movement during the war, it is refreshing to know that more and more factual evidence are emerging throughout Europe in defense of the Catholic Church and her efforts to save Jews and fight Nazism. 
 
The Vatican has taken up the canonisation Cause of a British nun who helped to hide scores of Jews from the Nazis during the Second World War. A file on Mother Riccarda Beauchamp Hambrough , who was a member of the Bridgettines, nicknamed ‘the hot cross bun nuns’, has been sent to the Vatican to be studied by historians and theologians. Her Cause for sainthood was opened in July 2010 by the Diocese of Rome along with that of Sister Katherine Flanagan, marking the first phase of the investigations.

In a significant development, the Causes of both women, who have the status of Servants of God, have together been sent to the Holy See’s Congregation for the Causes of Saints, marking a quick and early step forward in the long road to becoming saints. If it is concluded that the pair lived lives of “heroic virtue”, the Pope will declare the London-born nuns to be “Venerable” and the search will begin for two miracles to first declare them Blessed and then as saints.

Both nuns belonged to a revived order of Bridgettine Sisters nicknamed “the hot cross bun nuns” because of the distinctive crosses covering the tops of their wimples.

Mother Riccarda helped to save the lives of about 60 Jews by hiding them from the Nazis in her Rome convent, the Casa di Santa Brigida. She born in 1887 and was baptised in St Mary Magdalene’s Church, Brighton, at the age of four years after her parents converted to the Catholic faith.

Fr Ray Blake, the parish priest of St Mary’s, has welcomed the progress of her Cause. “I think it is fantastic,” he said “We are celebrating our 150th anniversary of the opening of the church this year and we can add that to our celebrations.” He added: “Here in Brighton we are following her cause with great enthusiasm and see her very much as our local saint. “When I tell people at Mass that her Cause is going forward I’m sure that they will be overjoyed.”

While Mother Riccarda spent most of her life in Rome, eventually becoming the head of the order, Sister Katherine was at the forefront of efforts to open Bridgettine convents around the world some 400 years after the Reformation nearly wiped out the order. Judith Whitehead, a niece of Sister Katherine, said she was astonished that the first phase had concluded so quickly.

“I am surprised that it has moved to the next stage in my lifetime,” said Mrs Whitehead, 73, of Shaftesbury, Dorset, who had given evidence to the initial Rome inquiry.“I thought that the progression of looking into her life would take about 10 years,” she said. “It is amazing to have someone in your family who was so revered by everybody … the Bridgettines obviously think that she is going to become a saint.”

Fr Simon Henry, the parish priest of St Gregory’s Church, Earlsfield, south London, where Sister Katherine was baptised, said: “To have a possible saint from the parish is wonderful.”

Born Florence Catherine in Clerkenwell in 1892, Sister Katherine trained as a dressmaker before she left the family home for Rome at 19 years with the aim of becoming a nun.

She went on to become the first prioress of new convents in Iver Heath, Buckinghamshire; Lugano, Switzerland; and Vadstena, Sweden – where she died in 1941.

A year after Sister Katherine joined, the future Mother Riccarda – born Madaleina Catherine – also journeyed to Rome.

Because of her ability and intelligence she soon became deputy of the Order, called the Most Holy Saviour of St Bridget, and remained at the mother house in the Italian capital.

When the Nazis took control in Rome in 1943, and began to round-up the Jews of Rome for deportation to Auschwitz, Mother Riccarda risked her own life by smuggling fugitives into her convent.

Some Jews who gave evidence to the initial inquiry spoke of Mother Riccarda’s kindness, saying they nicknamed her “Mama”.

She died in Rome in 1966 at the age of 79 years

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Catholics should never doubt the wisdom of  Sacred Tradition in the Church. We sometimes are questioned ‘Why do Catholics do penance?’ or ‘Is the penitential spirit of Lent in Scriptures?’ Our answer to this should be an enphatic ‘Yes’!

PRESENT YOUR BODIES A LIVING SACRIFICE, HOLY, ACCEPTABLE UNTO GOD-Ro 12:1.

THEY THAT ARE CHRIST’S HAVE CRUCIFIED THE FLESH WITH THE AFFECTIONS (or passions) AND LUSTS (or desires)-Gal 5:24.

MAKE NOT PROVISION FOR THE FLESH, TO FULFILL THE LUSTS THEREOF-Romans 13:14.

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Ever tried to explain the importance of the Sacraments to a protestant friend? Are they really necessary for Salvation, if  Salvation is a Gift of God? If yes,  are those who die without baptism, for example, condemned to eternal death? Cardinal Arinze answers these questions in the video below.

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