General Discussion (8)

General Discussion (8)

If there’s something of interest in the news that’s not covered in one of the topic threads, or you have a question to ask, a comment you’d like to  GeneralDiscussion3peoplemake about anything under the sun, more or less, this is the thread for you. However, please check first, to ensure that you haven’t missed a topic thread or another thread where it would be appropriate to post your comment.  Readers have occasionally gone straight to the General Discussion thread to post news that is already the topic of a thread or to ask a question that is already being discussed elsewhere. So, do your Sherlock Holmes before posting here, please and thank you!

Feel free, also, to share your favourite spiritual reading books, prayers and devotions. Whatever.


To read General Discussion Thread (1) click here (2) click here (3) click here
(4) click here (5) click here (6) click here (7) click here

Comments (514)

  • gabriel syme

    Everyone please sign and spread this anti-abortion petition:

    September 1, 2015 at 9:25 pm
    • editor

      Gabriel Syme,

      I’ve signed the petition and also emailed my MP as follows (note the small number of signatures and number required to reach the floor of Parliament, so encourage everyone you know to sign.)

      Dear (Name)

      I write to inform you that I have signed this petition (1) to make abortion illegal in the UK

      I trust that you will seriously examine the issues surrounding the right to life of the most vulnerable people in society, the unborn child, and I include this link to a website (2) which depicts, in graphic terms, the full horror of the abortion procedure. I send this, not to offend you but to highlight the truth about abortion which the media keeps from the general public, assuming that you would prefer to know the truth rather than be misinformed by those with various vested interests in the abortion industry.

      Kind regards.

      (1) included link to the petition

      (2) linked to Abort67

      September 1, 2015 at 10:16 pm
      • leprechaun

        Madame Editor,

        Thank you for this draft letter which I have copied to send to my MP. Other bloggers and lurkers may wish to know without having to look for them that your link #1 is:

        and your link #2 is:

        September 2, 2015 at 8:44 am
      • editor

        Thank you Leprechaun. I just didn’t have the time, at the time, if you get my drift 😀 I’ve now added the two links to my post, just for ease of reference for new readers and bloggers who may only now be reading about this petition. Thanks for the prompt. Much appreciated.

        Great, too, that you’ve copied my letter to send to your MP – brilliant. Let’s hope they visit Abort67 website and that it grabs their indifference and throttles it to death!

        September 2, 2015 at 8:50 am
      • Therese


        I have also followed your example and e-mailed my MP.

        Many thanks.

        September 3, 2015 at 12:40 pm
  • sixupman

    Aljazeera “Inside Story” this a.m. on the trends with Franciscus. Vatican American cleric, African cleric, “Church Historian”. Worse than has been exposed on web to-date. One, “Pope not to judge clergy on subject of their sexual orientation”; more women in Church hierarchy; etc.

    Interviewer raised some hard points. Will be repeated at another time to-day.

    September 3, 2015 at 9:04 am
  • sixupman

    Aljazeera repeats: to-day 12:30 & 18:30

    September 3, 2015 at 9:17 am
  • pew catholic

    Editor, any chance you will remove the ‘named person’ thread from the top of your blog quite soon? It’s just so depressing seeing Nicola Sturgeon every time I scroll down to the recent stuff!

    September 3, 2015 at 8:19 pm
    • editor

      Pew Catholic,

      While you have my complete sympathy, I thought we would leave the NP thread at the top until the appeals procedure has been exhausted. Or at least, until the Supreme Court rules. It might take forever to reach Europe, so we won’t suffer wee Nicola for that length of time. No way! I’m about to post the latest from the NO2NP campaign on that thread right now, so, see you over there!

      On a different topic, WordPress notified me that the Hollie Greig campaign has reblogged our discussion about her situation – click here to reach it. You will then find yourself back here reading the Hollie Greig thread from May 2014. I have just re-opened that thread to allow further comment.

      September 3, 2015 at 10:59 pm
  • crofterlady September 4, 2015 at 5:36 pm
    • editor


      Thank you for that alert very sad news, but consoling that (if I’m reading it correctly) Bishop Fellay’s mother died on the Feast of Saint Pius X. Very consoling.

      September 4, 2015 at 6:52 pm
  • Andrew Paterson

    We are now in the throes of another bizarre campaign. It is to let all the “refugees” into Europe.
    I have looked at the whole thing analytically, indofar as is possible, and it is pretty much a fraud being perpetrated on Western Europe. At any rate there is no evidence to the contrary. Story after story emanates from the BBC and the MSM intended to pluck at our heart strings, but there is no investigation or corroboration.
    Now not only Archbishop Tartaglia but the Holy Father have weighed in, urging us to take “refugees” into our hearts and homes. Our politicians are now agreeing to take in thousands and provide them with homes, income, schooling, health care. (Apparently the fact that a quarter of Scots children live in poverty can be ignored.)
    However, the bishops of the Catholic Church ignore the fact that the soi-disant “refugees” are our enemies. They hate us and will kill us because we are Christian. They are doing just that in the Middle East, London, and Glasgow.
    The politicians, who have no moral compass other than PC relativism, are happy to flood the country with people who will never be integrated (Google Rotherham).
    Only Hungary has tried to stem the flood and uphold the rules and laws agreed to and put in place by the UN and the EU. Only Viktor Orban the Hungarian Prime Minister has spoken plainly in defence of the Christian West. The Hungarians probably remember the Battle of Mohacs better than we do.

    September 6, 2015 at 4:32 pm
    • leprechaun

      Madame Editor,

      I am not convinced that all Muslims are out to convert us to their religion. Fanatics and fundamentalists, yes, but the ordinary man-in-the-street type Muslim, in my opinion, is content to practise a “live and let live” philosophy in the West as long as he is allowed to attend his mosque and to offer his prayers five times a day in the direction of Mecca without interference from non-Muslims.

      I understand there are two main branches to Islamism – Sunni and Shia – and that the militants are prepared to slaughter even their fellow-Muslims if they will not change their adherence.

      I deplore the West’s attitude to President Assad of Syria. He was democratically elected by his people, and he maintained from the very start of the troubles in Syria that the unrest was being provoked by foreign militant insurgents seeking to destabilise his country. Note that President Putin of Russia sympathises with President Assad.

      Two Syrian refugee brothers (one a doctor and the other a dentist) said that they had each had good livings in their country until they were driven out by a war they did not wish any part in, and the same must apply to many of the refugees.

      It seems clear to me that there are two possible solutions to stemming the refugee flood: Either, harking back to the days of the Crusades, the countries of the West need to send in their armies to confront and crush the militants and thus extinguish the evil force that is driving innocent people from their homes, or, in these more modern times, Pope Francis must consecrate Russia to the Immaculate Heart of Mary so that she can resolve the problem by supernatural means.

      It is not right to do a bad act in order to bring about a good result, so the only option remaining is for all the Diplomats and Heads of State in the West to concentrate their combined persuasiveness on Pope Francis and bring about a no-nonsense Consecration of Russia just as Our Lady requested.

      This option needs bringing to the attention of each Western government by the peoples of those countries writing to their representatives and demanding action to bring about that end.

      I think that Christmas Day would be a significant date on which the Consecration could be made – all it needs is for someone who commands the loyalty of good Catholics to publish a timetable and call for it to be actioned.

      “To whom shall we turn, Lord?”

      September 7, 2015 at 11:21 am
      • Andrew Paterson

        You come across as an apologist for Islam. It has already gone too far. Check with your local authority whether school dinners are halal at all schools? That is simply one facet.

        September 7, 2015 at 10:06 pm
      • leprechaun

        Love thy neighbour as thyself” said Our Lord.

        I am no apologist for Islam, having been forced out of the Magistracy after 17 years service for refusing to attend the local mosque and hear about the principles of Sharia Law.

        Russia will be consecrated to the Immaculate Heart of Mary even though it may be late in the day, and we have Our Lady’s promise on that.

        In comparison with such supernatural intervention, of what importance is it that, for the time being, a few politically correct educational authorities may or may not be providing halal meals at some schools?

        Consider this extract from the Apostles’ Creed:

        . . . who was conceived by the Holy Ghost, born of the Virgin Mary, suffered under Pontius Pilate . . .

        Notice the absence of any details about His life between His birth and His Passion?

        Halal meals in schools? Pardon?

        September 8, 2015 at 10:49 am
      • Fidelis


        With respect, I am surprised at your position about halal meals. Meals which are prepared in accordance with the rules of a false religion to please their false god, should be limited to people who believe in that religion and god, not imposed on children in all schools, including Catholic schools.

        You can’t say that it’s ok to insult the Trinity by accepting false beliefs about god (halal) just because Russia will eventually be consecrated. If you take that mindset to its logical conclusion, then nothing matters until the Consecration is done. I can’t see how that makes sense.

        And I don’t get your point about the creed? There are plenty of details about the life of Jesus in the New Testament – you can’t expect all the details to be recited every time we say the creed surely?

        I have to say I’m impressed by your stance as a Magistrate – well done, you. That wouldn’t have been easy. I wish more people were as conscientious.

        September 8, 2015 at 11:15 am
      • Therese

        It’s not just a few politically correct authorities, Leprechaun. All meat sold in the freezer and cold counter departments of supermarkets is now halal (not pork, obviously!) and therefore all schools are producing halal meals. This includes meat from New Zealand.

        Well done on taking a principled stand re your magistracy.

        September 8, 2015 at 12:01 pm
      • Christina

        I agree with you, Andrew. The underlying problem is that western Europeans, with a civilisation based on Christian values, no matter how corrupted they have become, cannot enter into the tribal mindset of Islam and its adherents, no matter how ‘peaceful’ they may seem to be. And nor can they comprehend that terrifying determination to spread the worship of their false god throughout the world by any means. For a long time now we have seen their banners claiming that Islam will conquer Britain and Europe at demonstrations in this country, but typically have shrugged them off as the views of a few extremists. In parts of Britain large communities are settled, but neither the indigenous original populations nor the Muslim immigrants – no matter what number generation they are, either desire or could achieve true assimilation and integration. Thanks to the indigenous population’s moral corruption, the Muslim population (a woman’s purpose is to bear seven sons for Allah) is set to outnumber it in a few generations. And now Europe has ‘opened its borders’. I am not totally lacking in compassion, I hope, but I see the exploitation of tragic circumstances, by ‘celebrities’ to cite one example, arousing that unreasoned and unreasoning outpouring of mass emotion that has become a hallmark of the modern crowd. ‘Peaceful’, devout Muslims may do no harm, and go about their lives mostly quietly, while politically correct local councils provide for all their religious needs – halal meat for all children and many adults being one example. But they will rejoice, in the name of their unholy religion when the Islamic caliphate becomes a reality and the infidel is converted.

        The Arab states do not feature in this refugee crisis, and again one needs to ask why. After all, these people are their Muslim brothers and sisters.

        And how many noticed, during the lawless exhibitions in Calais, that the women and children of typical refugee families were hardly to be seen? We saw strong, determined and resourceful young men. ‘Adventurers’ is a word that came to me as I watched some of them – and I tried hard not to see them thus. I have also wondered, uncomfortably, I confess, that if refugees entering Europe have paid large sums of money to people traffickers, what is becoming of the poor of the God-forsaken countries who are left there? I do not know what our political masters can do now, and, as Leprechaun has said, only Pope Francis has the earthly power to do anything at all.

        September 8, 2015 at 11:53 am
      • Andrew Paterson

        Christina, you have summed things up very neatly. The BCC has bombarded us with images of weeping mothers and wide-eyed children.
        As a result of the blatant pressure the BBC shamelessly put on the PM and the Government to follow the line of opening the gates to unnumbered “refugees”, the gates have been opened.
        The BBC no longer attempts to mention the legality of the actions of these would-be emigrants or to distinguish the various types: refugees, asylum seekers and economic migrants.
        There are some questions that the neither the BBC or anyone else asks.
        They do not ask how poor emigrants fleeing impoverished war-torn countries have mobile smartphones that work in all countries. Or how they have been able to pay the charges of the alleged smugglers. Or afford the ticket for a train from Budapest to Austria. I know that I can’t. I am beginning to wonder if there are not foreign paymasters at work here paying these people to come.
        As for the dead boy, the picture only has an impact on the gullible and dim. This has been happening for months. Every week men women and children drowned in the Mediterranean. We don’t need a picture to tell us. We know, and it does not change a thing.
        The parents put the child into mortal danger. It was their choice. Is Turkey not safe? Why does Merkel not suggest that Turkey deals with the problem?
        Was the picture staged? The MSM and the BBC in particular has spared no effort, and left no sob story untold in an attempt to unlock the gates of the UK.
        We have had a Syrian girl followed on her journey by the BBC. A personable young lady, as it happens. Nothing has been investigated or verified. The BBC have cosied up to illegal emigrants and spoken sweetly to them. We do not know if any of this is true.
        The use of emotive terms (refugees) and emotive pictures (wide-eyed children) together with a sympathetic and biased treatment in the media, particularly the BBC, hides the reality, and has been a constant theme. These people are criminals, no different to a burglar who enters your home and, threatening violence, takes what he wants.
        They come from their own countries, many of which they themselves have wrecked, to avail themselves of the work, effort and investment of money and thought that has created a reasonably civilised, and still fundamentally Christian, place to live. It has taken us hundreds of years and many generations to reach this level. Our Government is not only prepared but very keen for it all to be destroyed by those who have no concept of society or civilised standards as represented by Western civilisation. Our emotions are being manipulated in the same way as is done to sell soap powder.
        The reality of what is happening would be much clearer if the young men, who make up the majority of the “refugees”, all wore uniforms. Not “refugees” but invaders.
        The cost of this to the taxpayer is not properly stated. Unless indigenous British citizens are to be kicked out of their homes (and this is effectively what happens as these “refugees” immediately go to the top of the list for social housing) then at least 250 new houses require to be built in Scotland. The First Minister has kindly offered to take 1000 of these people, so I am calculating that would be 250 nuclear families with two adults and two children. As a house will cost £120,000 the housing cost will be £30m. In addition there will be schooling, health care and subsistence. This will amount to about £15,000 per year per person, I guess. So, a further £15 m per year will be expended. Over a period of sixteen years the cost to the taxpayer will be a total of £270m.
        Cameron is taking £100m from the overseas aid budget to cover 20,000 incomers. My calculations suggest that this figure is (£270m x 20) -£100m, or £5,300m short of what will be abstracted from the pockets of the UK taxpayer.
        In any event there will be many more niqabs being worn at Notre Dame High School.

        September 8, 2015 at 8:02 pm
      • Christina

        Andrew, you said it here before the Hungarian (foreign minister?) said it on BBC just a short while ago – “Europe is being invaded”. He too has noticed that 80% of migrants – he refuses to call them refugees – are young men of fighting age. He also noted, a new one on me, that many Pakistanis and Bagladeshis, claiming to be Syrians, are found among those at the Hungarian border. Germany admits that with its ageing and falling population (the reason not being mentioned), these ‘refugees’ are needed to repopulate the country. It’s all over, without divine intervention. I often wonder why Islam wasn’t mentioned by Our Lady at Fatima.

        September 9, 2015 at 10:37 am
      • editor


        “I often wonder why Islam wasn’t mentioned by Our Lady at Fatima.”

        Well, given that the Third Secret remains “secret”, who knows, Our Lady MAY have mentioned Islam at Fatima. If, as most scholars suspect, she mentioned Vatican II, there’s a chance the whole shebang was mentioned, ecumenism, inter-faith, the lot! I’ve even heard/read it said that the fact that Our Lady chose to appear at Fatima, itself makes a connection with Islam, Fatima being the name of one of the daughters of Muhammed. So, who knows?

        September 9, 2015 at 3:44 pm
      • catholicconvert1

        A certain Hungarian Bishop, Laszlo Kiss-Rigo has also stated that Europe is being invaded and that the Muslim migrants will come to subvert Christianity. It is well-known that Islam has a belief called Hijrah, by which Muslims colonise an area through migration, and through their energetic breeding habits take over an area in a form of peaceful Jihad.

        September 10, 2015 at 2:16 pm
  • Therese

    Breaking news: Easier divorce and remarriage for Catholics…..

    September 8, 2015 at 12:05 pm
    • Margaret Mary


      You nearly gave me a heart attack! When I read it properly it’s really about the annulment process being simplified and to be fair when someone is genuinely entitled to an annulment (and I can think of several in my own experience) then it is not fair to keep them waiting years for an annulment just because of bad bureaucracy.

      September 8, 2015 at 12:32 pm
  • Therese

    Sorry Margaret Mary! When I posted there were no details – just “breaking news”. Still, it’s good to get the circulation moving, they say!

    However, having read the item I’m not comforted at all. The “annulment” situation is already out of hand, and I do fear that making it easier will, in practice, mean easy divorce, although I’m sure we can rely upon our outstandingly Catholic bishops to maintain the purity of Church doctrine in this regard.

    September 8, 2015 at 2:42 pm
    • sixupman

      An ever wider and open door, I fear?

      September 8, 2015 at 4:25 pm
      • Athanasius

        I remember Pope John Paul II having to step in and get tough when annulments in the U.S. jumped from something like 700 per annum in 1965 to more than 50,000 by 1990. Pope Francis may well open those floodgates again.

        September 8, 2015 at 6:00 pm
      • gabriel syme

        I agree Athanasius; Fr Zs comment:

        It looks a lot like a return to the norms that were in place in the 70’s in these USA, which were catastrophic, and “annulments” were being handed out like aspirin to brides with headaches on their wedding days.

        September 8, 2015 at 9:33 pm
    • gabriel syme

      The “annulment” situation is already out of hand, and I do fear that making it easier will, in practice, mean easy divorce, although I’m sure we can rely upon our outstandingly Catholic bishops to maintain the purity of Church doctrine in this regard.

      That is a crucial part Therese.

      I have heard of shocking statistics regaridng annullment rates in some countries; regarding Francis intervention here, the stats will also be crucial to see if the process is being run properly or being abused.

      September 8, 2015 at 4:32 pm
  • gabriel syme

    I havent had time to read it in depth, but here is part the Catholic Herald response to the Motu Proprio:

    The Pope wishes to speed up annulments, but he does not want to compromise the doctrine of indissolubility.Because bishops will judge, and because bishops are charged with upholding the faith in union with the Holy See, the doctrine of indissolubility will be safeguarded. One notes the way the Pope speaks of “faith and discipline” – the latter reflects the former, and the two cannot be seperated. That is a crucial point and it gives a hint to the discussions at the coming Synod, where, one hopes, all talk of faith and discipline parting compnay will be sternly resisted.

    One also notes the reference to the “Catholic unity” that exists between Peter and the bishops. We all know that Catholic means universal. This too is a hint that so called “local solutions” will be given short shrift. The Church is One, as the Creed states: Germany will not be getting what it wants. The Pope has come down in favour of Cardinal Müller, not Cardinal Marx

    From scanning it, it seems encouraging, I am just hoping the neo-con Catholics are not deluding themselves as to Francis’ intentions!

    Re the last line, about the Pope coming down in favour of Muller, not Marx – for one thing, I am sure I speak for us all when I say we could really do without this uncertainty / soap opera that th CHurch inflicts upon us at times!

    September 8, 2015 at 4:27 pm
    • Petrus

      I think this is the pope trying to side step the Holy Ghost. He knows he can’t change doctrine so this is a blatant attempt at undermining doctrine through the Pastoral door. I’m sure the Holy Ghost has the measure of him!

      This reminds me of the reforms of the process for canonisation. The procedure instilled confidence. Not anymore.

      September 8, 2015 at 5:32 pm
      • editor


        The “reform” of the annulment process is too unbelievable for words. And on this morning’s Kaye Adams’ show (with Louise White standing in for Kaye) we had to listen to Ronnie Convery, Church employee in Glasgow, crooning along from the same hymn sheet as Papa Francis, proving beyond a doubt, that the report from an “inside source” posted on this blog some time ago, is highly unlikely to be true; that is, the claim that Archbishop Tartaglia (Convery’s “boss”) told his priests that he will not be putting up with any shenanigans at the Synod.

        Remember? He said that if part two of the synod turns out to be as per part one, he “may” not be Archbishop of Glasgow any longer.* Yeah right. I’ll believe it when I see the headlines about his resignation because clearly, he supports this “slimming down of the annulment process” to undermine marriage or Convery, we have to presume, wouldn’t be so arrogant as to participate in a discussion on Radio Scotland crowing about it. Click here to listen to this morning’s conversation on the topic: scroll along to 02-24-37

        * It is true, but only in the sense that the Archbishop did say this – I verified it at the time – but I don’t believe – frankly – that he will do a darn thing if the synod goes ahead in the same vein as part one. He said that in that case, he “may” not be archbishop much longer. Which allows for the possibility, of course, that he well “may” And I think he will. Otherwise, he’d have refused to go along with this blatant “easy divorce and remarriage for Catholics” dressed up as slimming down the annulment process, instead of sending one of his minions on to Radio Scotland to defend it.

        September 9, 2015 at 7:25 pm
  • pew catholic

    It was the only wiggle-room Francis had, given the teaching of Christ. But why did it take him so long to realise that?

    And why is this whole question of annulments not part of the forthcoming synod? Is it to give the homosexual lobby a clear run?

    September 8, 2015 at 6:40 pm
  • Therese

    The latest from Michael Matt at the Remnant:

    Early reports are in, and it looks like Pope Francis, as expected, has radically reformed the process by which Catholics may annul their marriages, streamlining steps that many liberals in the church considered too cumbersome.

    The move is the latest in a series of public relations initiatives, whereby Francis hopes to make his pontificate appear more responsive to the needs of lay Catholics, especially those who have “long felt marginalized” by the hierarchy (READ: Don’t like Catholic moral theology).

    The three main changes announced on Tuesday are:

    • Eliminating a second review by a cleric before a marriage can be nullified.

    • Giving bishops the ability to fast-track and grant the annulments themselves in certain circumstances — for example, when spousal abuse or an extramarital affair has occurred.

    • The process should be free, except for a nominal fee for administrative costs, and should be completed within 45 days.

    The Pope’s reforms came Tuesday in the form of two “motu proprio” documents, Latin for “by (the Pope’s) own initiative.” They become part of Catholic canon law on December 8, the beginning of Francis’ declared “Year of Mercy.”

    REMNANT COMMENT: We’ll have to wait for the official translation later today, but this already promises to dramatically undermine marriage, especially in third world countries where the annulment process is less popular and marriage vows are stronger.

    The Pope is reportedly waiving fees, leaving it up to local bishops to delegate priests to handle annulments, removing one of the tribunals, removing the automatic appeal, and green-lighting annulments when both parties want the annulment. (This last one is my favorite, by the way, since it basically means that when you and the missus decide to call it quits all you need is mutual agreement that the thing never happened in the first place. Now . isn’t . that . convenient!)

    And of course the Holy Father is adding a “lack of faith” to the growing list of trumped-up reasons to conclude there was never a marriage in the first place, as well. At the end of the day, if you WANT an annulment you GOT an annulment . . . but let’s not call it “divorce”. Heck, no! That would tamper with the indissolubility of marriage!

    By the way, what about those of us who feel marginalized for believing as Catholics believed for thousands of years, that marriage vows actually mean something, that only death can break them, that we are married in the eyes of God, that there is no opt-out clause? What about us?

    What about those who follow the rules and take marriage seriously, and who firmly believe that “streamlining the annulment process” is just an embarrassingly transparent euphemism for on-demand divorce for Catholics? Any chance of us getting a little mercy up in here? No? I didn’t think so!

    What a joke! How the halls of hell must be echoing with the booming laughter of old Henry the King of England.

    Well played, Francis. You’ve done it again!

    September 8, 2015 at 8:34 pm
    • Christina

      Therese, I’m shocked. Surely spousal abuse and extramarital affairs weren’t always valid reasons for annulment? I always thought that separation was the only course open to the innocent party, and was taught that marriages were annulled only if there was defect of intent or canonical form or if the marriage was not consummated. We were also made aware of the Pauline Privilege, but thought that a bit hard on the ‘pagan’ spouse! From what you have said I see no difference now between annulment and divorce. Perhaps Henry VIII will get a posthumous apology.

      September 9, 2015 at 10:15 pm
      • Therese


        I’m very confused by your post. I have said nothing to contradict your understanding of the valid reasons for annulment. Have you misunderstood?

        September 10, 2015 at 6:00 pm
      • Christina

        Sorry Therese, I can see why you were confused, as my post is VERY badly expressed. I meant that I was shocked by the report by Michael Matt, as I hadn’t realised just how far ‘annulments’ compromise Church teaching as I received it. I should not have said “From what you have said” when I meant “From what you have brought to bloggers’ attention in quoting from Michael Matt”.

        Would I disagree with one who is top of the pay-scale? Perish the thought and blame my late nights😁.

        September 10, 2015 at 9:50 pm
      • Therese

        Christina – ah – now I understand. No apology necessary – I get confused so easily nowadays – especially with what’s coming out of the Vatican. I wish you were in charge of the payroll though – you’ve promoted me. I wasn’t even on the lowest scale, but shhh… I won’t say anything if you don’t…..

        September 10, 2015 at 10:55 pm
      • Christina

        Are you sure? I thought I noticed (turning green) that Ed put you up there a wee while ago😭.

        September 10, 2015 at 11:46 pm
    • Andrew Paterson

      I have never understood how this process worked. It only applied to rich people because of the long drawn out and expensive hearings etc. Like Christina I did not think that adultery was a reason. Rather the opposite as non-consummation was valid reason.
      I thought that the Church recognised as valid, marriages that were properly entered outside the Church. I wrote to the relevant bishop in Australia enquiring how Nicole Kidman could be married in a Catholic ceremony as she had contracted a marriage with Tom Cruise and subsequently divorced. No reply.
      If a marriage of a Catholic to a Scientologist is not recognised as valid by the Church (the only explanation I have been able to get) it throws the doors open for any abuse. I admit my lack of understanding on this.
      The Church has long forgotten the direction that couples who have previously “been living in open and public concubinage” should not be married in a Catholic ceremony.

      September 10, 2015 at 8:33 am
      • catholicconvert1

        Regarding marital invalidity, I was unaware that non-consummation was grounds for an annulment. I always thought that marriages were invalid, and thus eligible for annulment, if there was some defect of intent or canonical form, such as if it was forced, arranged, one partner was impotent/ homosexual or had another partner at the time of the marriage. Why would non-consummation be granted an annulment? Is this covered by defect of intention, i.e. the intention (assumed at least) being procreation?

        Just one more question. Are celibate marriages permitted, where the spouses decide not to breed from the start? I believe the Little Flower’s parents intended to do this, but their confessor advised them not to. Correct me if I’m wrong, but are these marriages called Josephite marriages? A Catholic friend told me that getting married and not having sex was ‘selfish’.

        September 10, 2015 at 2:27 pm
      • Andrew Paterson

        Christina, thanks for your response. I think most circumstances are covered by your first paragraph, and psychological or physical incapacity are included.
        Celibate marriages I am not sure of. There must be different categories, otherwise old people could not validly marry. One argument would be that procreation may be the main, but not the only purpose of marriage.
        St Paul covers it mostly in Ephesians 22/32.
        (Dom Eugene Boylan expands on this theme in a chapter of “This Tremendous Lover”).
        But again, I must confess I don’t know that much.

        September 10, 2015 at 3:04 pm
      • Petrus

        I always understood marriage to be complete once the marital act had taken place.  I must admit I strongly dislike “breed”.  It’s a very crude term.

        Sent from my Samsung device

        September 10, 2015 at 3:50 pm
      • Fidelis


        There is no mention of the marital act in the vows. If someone vows before God to live out the things on the list without having any intention of doing so, that surely nullifies the event, as it would in any other sphere of life. I’m not “for” annulments, don’t get me wrong, but I’m also not for injustice if someone, male or female has married in good faith, meaning their vows and not having a clue that their partner has no intention of keeping theirs. I’ve always understood it was about freedom to make the vows, no coercion and sincerity, meaning to keep the vows for life.

        If you (assuming you’re married) found out that your wife had no intention of keeping faithful to you, and wanted to have affairs while staying with you in the marriage home, would you feel that you were in a real marriage?

        September 10, 2015 at 4:19 pm
      • Petrus

        You misunderstand me.  All I’m saying is that a valid marriage has to be consumated.  I didn’t refer to intent.

        Sent from my Samsung device

        September 10, 2015 at 4:35 pm
      • Fidelis


        sorry, I can see you were replying to Andrew Paterson and not the other posts on this subject! I was talking to you and you were actually talking to someone else! LOL!

        September 10, 2015 at 4:49 pm
      • Petrus

        No worries.  I’ve done the same thing countless times.

        Sent from my Samsung device

        September 10, 2015 at 7:36 pm
      • Muffin Man Returns

        CC, not all homosexuals in heterosexual marriages are impotent, I know one and he couldn’t have been impotent because he has a child.

        September 10, 2015 at 6:54 pm
      • catholicconvert1

        I didn’t say homosexuals were impotent. It may have been clearer if I put Homosexual or impotent.

        I’m sure I’ve heard of Josephite marriages from somewhere, but I can’t remember the source.

        September 10, 2015 at 9:24 pm
      • Margaret Mary

        This is a short explanation of Josephite marriages

        September 10, 2015 at 9:29 pm
  • westminsterfly

    And speaking as someone who has already witnessed an ‘annulment’ travesty in their own immediate family, I would say things need to be tightened up – not loosened!

    September 8, 2015 at 8:53 pm
  • gabriel syme

    Kurt Martens, a professor of canon law at Catholic University, said the expedited process would apply to Catholic couples facing certain conditions, including those who have an abortion, a grave contagious disease, children from a previous relationship or imprisonment. Essentially, Martens said, the church is providing a path that looks like the Catholic version of no-fault divorce.

    I think I can see what he has done; in the Catholic Herald article I posted above, Fr Lucie-Smith was crowing that “The Germans wont get what they want” at the synod (communion for the divorced and remarried).

    But by giving Bishops the power to annul, surely Francis will (in countries like Germany) have opened the annulment floodgates and so people who do decide to leave a marriage for another will indeed be able to receive communion having gone through this new process?

    Chillingly, another quote in the link in this post suggests Bishops could even delegate annulments to priests.

    September 8, 2015 at 9:31 pm
    • editor

      Gabriel Syme,

      A word of warning/advice. NEVER trust the writings of Father Lucie-Smith. He’s a “liberal” to his finger tips. He NEVER gets it right – manages to appear orthodox (at a superficial reading) but he is far from being so – sadly.

      September 8, 2015 at 11:01 pm
      • gabriel syme

        Thanks Editor – I should probably know better than to look at the Catholic Herald anyway!

        I posted a comment (similar to my one above, about the German plans succeeding in a roundabout way) on the Herald article.

        Another commentator is claiming this is a “traditional” move because the Bishop is returning to head the tribunals!?

        If there is strict guidance issued regarding what constitues an annulment, then abuse of the system may be limited, but I would still expect the figures to sky-rocket.

        September 9, 2015 at 9:17 am
      • editor

        Gabriel Syme,

        There’s no harm in taking a look at the Catholic Herald and ilk, just to keep an eye on what they’re up to, but I wouldn’t consider any of their writers thoroughly orthodox, because if they were, they wouldn’t be writing for any Catholic newspaper today! Get it? In other words, as they say in the “we think outside the box” circles, we need to read “smartly” 😀

        September 9, 2015 at 3:47 pm
  • Leo

    When it comes to the utterances of those tools of satan, the Western political elite, and the deluge of antichrist puke constantly coming from the relentless propagators of cultural Marxism in the mainstream mass media, a policy of extreme scepticism is both justified and wise, indeed all but essential, if a properly informed opinion is desirable. The groupthink gets worse by the day.

    Andrew Paterson’s and Christina’s posts further up the thread reminded me of a blog that I skim from time to time. It isn’t a religious blog as such, and readers here may need to exercise discretion and judgement at times, but it’s fair to say that from what I recall, in large part, the much needed defence of Christian Civilisation is given a boost. While the blog deals with French news, the lessons apply across the West. The regular updates on the ongoing squabbles between members of the Le Pen family and other political stories may not be of interest to everyone, but much of the content offers a very welcome and informative alternative to the Alinsky-spirited agitprop drivel that passes for mainstream news and journalism across lands whose culture is rooted in Christian civilisation.

    Andrew raised the issue of the tragic death of a toddler, and photographs that appeared across the media amid a chorus of emotive, and if the story in this link is to be believed, extremely exploitative, if not downright cynical cries aimed at exerting irresistible pressure on public opinion.

    The following quoted words from the Gallia Watch blog on the subject of the tragic drowning of the young child comes from the work of a French journalist, and make the “welcome alternative” point in spades. “Putting a different spin” doesn’t even begin to describe matters.

    “The family of the child found dead on a beach in Turkey had been in Turkey for three years.

    – The father wanted to take advantage of the current exodus to go to Europe for dental work.

    – He is the only survivor because he was the only one with a life jacket: in Islam, women and children are a negligible quantity.

    – The burial of the wife and children took place in the family’s home town of Kobane, in… Syria.”

    Assuming of course that the above is true, don’t expect to be given similar reports through the newsstands or TV sets that enforce public opinion and herd the “sheeple” throughout these islands.

    The Frankfurt School is very much alive and kicking for satan.

    September 9, 2015 at 9:13 pm
    • Andrew Paterson

      Since you mention it, there are two versions of this photo – actually two photos , at different locations.

      September 10, 2015 at 8:37 am
      • Leo

        Thanks, Andrew.

        These pictures make the whole stunt even worse. And it’s shocking to say that this revelation isn’t shocking.

        So the staging wasn’t even down by some amoral paparazzi trying to make a name for himself, along with a few quid. The lads in the green berets obviously weren’t doing this off their own bat, for personal gain.

        Just how evil are these EU overlords of ours: Monkeys dancing for their organ grinder, the father of lies.

        September 10, 2015 at 2:15 pm
  • Leo

    Readers can decide for themselves the extent to which the below linked article fits in with the headline news story of these days. In fact, regardless of the current mass migration across the Mediterranean which appears to be activating a hitherto well-hidden concern for human life amongst the European ruling elite (excuse my scepticism), and granted the undoubted fact that many of those making the journey are genuine refugees fleeing from appalling persecution at the hands of enemies of Christ, the following merits attention. I don’t think cream puff “dialogue” and brandishing copies of Nostra Aetate are going to carry much weight with these buckos, whom the Pope can see without leaving his living room.


    “In the weekly supplement Venerdì of the daily newspaper La Repubblica, Vaticanist Filippo Di Giacomo has written an article: ‘There is an Increasingly Stronger Presence of Islamic Prayer around St. Peter’, about which he reported on the increase of Muslims in Rome and in the streets around the Vatican.
    “Di Giacomo also reported that it is increasingly frequented by groups of men in oriental sack clothes and beards that take selfies before St. Peter’s Basilica. With one hand they hold their smartphone, with the other hand they make a victory sign. The gesture is in need of interpretation, the first thought in any case is not necessarily reassuring.
    “Di Giacomo especially described the bearded men who ask tourists and locals alike in the streets and squares around St Peter’s: ‘Do you want Allah? Do you like Allah?’ ‘

    …”’While the Vatican is discussing, the Vatican neighborhood already has the largest concentration of Islamic prayer rooms of Rome,’ said Di Giacomo.”

    Reading of these “proselytizers” brings woefully to mind the Ramadan message sent by Pope Francis to Mohammedans two years ago. In it, the Pope wrote that of “we are called to respect” the “teachings”, “symbols” and “values” of false religions. How can the relativisation of religion and indifferentism be avoided if this is to be the mentality of Catholics? What exactly does evangelisation mean according to the Conciliar mind set? Answers on a post card, please. Or maybe just on a postage stamp.

    Here are the noteworthy words of the Pope contained in that message:

    “Turning to mutual respect in interreligious relations, especially between Christians and Muslims, we are called to respect the religion of the other, its teachings, its symbols, its values. Particular respect is due to religious leaders and to places of worship. How painful are attacks on one or other of these! It is clear that, when we show respect for the religion of our neighbors or when we offer them our good wishes on the occasion of a religious celebration, we simply seek to share their joy, without making reference to the content of their religious convictions.”

    In saner times, Catholics would have had no need to be reminded of the words of Sacred Scripture:

    “Beware lest thou have a mind to imitate the abominations of those nations.” – Deuteronomy 18:9

    As for “respect”: well that appears to be very much a one way street. Just ask the hundreds of thousands of Christians who have been at the receiving end of depraved cruelty across Asia and Africa.

    Can I suggest that the Pope send out a message to the prowling bearded islamist selfie men in Saint Peter’s Square which contains the following words or reflects the teaching expressed therein:

    “He that honoureth not the Son, honoureth not the Father who sent Him.” – John 5:23

    “Let no man deceive you with vain words. For because of these things cometh the anger of God upon the children of unbelief. Be ye not therefore partakers with them.” – Ephesians 5:6

    “Therefore, they must instruct them (Muslims) in the true worship of God, which is unique to the Catholic religion.” – Pope Gregory XVI, Summo Iugiter Studio, #6, 1832

    I think it is very well worthwhile posting a link to the magnificent, truly Catholic words of Father de Cacqueray, the Society’s then District Superior of France, written two years ago, at the time of the Pope’s message. They really should be read. The linked article also has the Holy Father’s full message.

    September 9, 2015 at 9:18 pm
    • editor


      Thank you for those two posts. It’s just mind blowing that a Pope should encourage, with apparent enthusiasm, the worship of a false god and be happy to leave the followers of a false religion in their error, tell Catholics not to seek converts while praising the Muslims who are doing exactly that even in Rome (and around St Peter’s) itself. Truly, you couldn’t make this stuff up.

      There’s NO conception of salvation from sin and Hell now, in the ranks of the upper hierarchy – that is manifestly the case. The Church, in their understanding, is nothing more than a worldwide social club, existing only to make this world a better place (i.e. no silly divisions based on establishing God’s truth in religion and morals) and, of course, to help the poor, needy …and refugees.


      September 9, 2015 at 10:46 pm
    • Andrew Paterson

      Leo, thanks for that. Another example of the enemy at work.
      As for the words of the Holy Father on respecting other religions, it is the most nonsensical baloney one can imagine. Ten seconds of joined-up thinking would utterly refute the idea.
      My religion is worshipping the tree at the bottom of the garden.
      Remember yogic flying?
      The Earth is flat (Paul Kruger, in 20th century)
      Are any of these three worthy of respect?
      It may be that adherents of certain religions are worthy of respect. It may be that certain ideologies are worthy of respect insofar as they represent a threat.
      To treat islam as a religion worthy of respect is wrong. It is the tool of Satan, surely?

      September 10, 2015 at 8:48 am
      • Fidelis

        Andrew Paterson,

        That is very well said. I agree with every word. We can’t “respect” every idea or belief on the planet, and I don’t see a lot of respect for Catholic beliefs in the media. Catholic teaching on sexuality and marriage is openly criticised, so it’s a one-way kind of “respect for all beliefs”.

        September 10, 2015 at 8:54 am
      • Leo


        “Nonsensical baloney” is spot on. Putting false beliefs on a par with Truth is nothing less an assault on reason. It’s Vatican II versus the Summa Theologica.

        As I mentioned in a post on another thread, the most succinct summary of Vatican II I have heard came from a Society priest, who described it as “human respect ‘dogmatized’”.

        As for Islam in particular, I believe Newman had some words which compared its presence in Turkey with the Antichrist.

        September 10, 2015 at 2:16 pm
      • catholicconvert1

        At least Paul Kruger was a Christian. I believe that the only book he ever read was the Bible, and that whenever the Boers won a war against the British or the Natives, he sang a Psalm of victory. He also prayed long prayers of grace before meals. As for people who say he was racist, that’s fair enough, but he was indoctrinated in the beliefs of the Dutch Reformed Church, renowned for it’s support for Apartheid in later years, and did not know no different.

        September 10, 2015 at 2:40 pm
      • Andrew Paterson

        I did not mean to demean Oom Paul. I am stating that his beliefs in respect of asrronomy and geography may have been risible. I know of no reason why Paul Kruger should not be referred to with great respect.
        We need to clearly distinguish between a person and his beliefs, otherwise we cloud our view.

        September 10, 2015 at 5:05 pm
    • Christina

      Thank you Leo and Andrew for your excellent posts and links concerning the reality of the current Islamic threat to Europe and Rome. I confess to having little informed knowledge of world politics, but I have a copy of the Koran, know a little about the ‘Prophet’, his ‘revelations’, life and creation of a diabolical creed, and live close to an expanding Muslim community the arrogance of which reduces the remaining original inhabitants to dhimmiude. I have felt this myself in old haunts revisited.

      If one studies Islam, even shallowly, recent events should arouse the greatest fear in any Catholic or any citizen of Europe, and again I am grateful to you for material that helps me to understand in more depth why the ‘refugee’ crisis has disturbed me so profoundly. Pope Francis’s part in this is blind and stupid or unfathomably sinister – I can’t decide which is most likely. I do see in it all the image of ‘the bishop in white’ of the Third secret of Fatima.

      September 10, 2015 at 12:47 pm
      • Leo

        Thank you for that post, Christina.

        Certainly we all need, urgently, to get informed about islam. The present woeful ignorance among the general population is going to have to change, one way or another, if we are to avoid some sort of dhimmitude.

        The following words from Father de Cacquerey’s statement which I linked to previously, bear repetition:

        “Fr. De Foucauld, who lived in contact with the Muslims and whose love for these men knew no bounds, was always lucid in distrusting their erroneous beliefs.[1] Speaking of the Muslims of North Africa, he said:
        ‘They can fight with great courage for France, out of a sentiment of honor, a warlike character, a solidarity, a fidelity to their given word, like the mercenaries of the 16th and 17th centuries, but generally speaking, besides some exceptions, as long as they remain Muslim, they will not be French; they will wait more or less patiently for the day of the medhi, when they will drive France to submission.’”

        As for Pope Francis’ dealings with Islam, he would be very well advised to look to the example of his patron saint (see the same link mentioned above) rather the scandalous words and actions of his predecessor Pope John Paul II.

        Finally, is it just me, or does anyone else have the impression, that a shameful, silent veil has been drawn over Pope Benedict’s courageous Regensburg address. Don’t expect the dust to be blown away anytime soon. I don’t imagine the former Pope’s table is overladen with written apologies from all those commissars of political correctness who couldn’t wait to issue foam flecked denunciations nine years ago, almost to the day. And certainly not from all those Charlie people.

        September 10, 2015 at 2:18 pm
  • Margaret Mary

    This just makes me wonder how many (or how few) Catholics actually ever believed the teaching on marriage. It’s just incredible how people like this journalist can suddenly make the arguments that Mary Regan makes in this article.

    September 9, 2015 at 11:02 pm
  • morgana

    Are there any like minded readers who just simply believe marriage is for life.Now there are some exceptions one being nobody would expect you to say with a man who was beating the living daylights out off you.In the unfortunate event my marriage would come to an end I absolutely would not seek to see whether it could be annulled I would separate but still know that I was married.Surely you go into the marriage with your eyes wide open and I accept that the church allows annulment but I agree that there will almost certainly be rising numbers in light of the popes latest gesture

    September 9, 2015 at 11:49 pm
    • Andrew Paterson

      Morgana, you are right. However, the generation of today, that is, those approaching marriagable age, say 16 -32 are faced with a barrage of tripe on the subject. There is a huge amount on the choice of wedding dresses and themed venues but very little on the reality. Marriage is a practical business and there will be tough times for all sorts of reasons. There is very little preparation for that in many cases.

      September 10, 2015 at 8:16 am
      • editor


        There is absolutely NO choice in the matter of wedding dresses – there has been only one style for years now. Low cut, shoulder-less, backless, ugly, unfeminine pieces of material that look ridiculous, especially when worn with a veil. The fact is that the women wearing them are – in fact – not real “brides” at all (most have been shacked up with their “partners” until the wedding day) so they’re not aware of the incongruity of their appearance.

        September 10, 2015 at 8:31 am
      • morgana

        I agree Andrew that marriage has become more about the big occasion and less about the actual importance off the sacrament once entered into takes a lot off hard work to see you through the tough times.Nowadays its all to easy to give up at the first hurdle.

        September 10, 2015 at 8:51 am
    • Fidelis


      I know more than one person who believes marriage is for life, even though they ARE entitled to an annulment. I’m thinking of some people I’ve met who married men who did NOT believe that marriage is for life and lived accordingly, as if he was a single man, out drinking, meeting friends all the time. The women did everything in their power to make things work and, for the sake of their children, put up heroically with the situation. In the cases I know, there was no “beatings” but other issues that meant the wives had lodgers, not husbands, and this gave dreadful example to the children. Add to this mix a husband who is living as a single, selfish man, who also hates the Catholic faith and although he promised to allow the children to be raised as Catholics, makes it impossible for the mother to do so. Consider how the children love their father. Think of the confusion and the danger to their faith – the possibility that the children will leave the faith, if not right away (thanks to mother) then later on.

      In these extreme cases, I think, assuming the conditions for an annulment are met,
      given that the women thought, in good faith, that they were contracting a true marriage, where both intended to live as husband and wife, that it is acceptable to seek an annulment. I think that because, having suffered this injustice of being deceived into marriage, which is effectively what happened in the cases of which I know a little, then the women may be tempted into sin if they later meet someone else.

      In one of these cases, the husband was a gambler and the family were often left without money for food. He believed in divorce, so there was obviously deceit there, as he made his vows in bad faith. In another case I know, the husband had been blackmailed into marriage because the girl was pregnant and threatening to have an abortion if he didn’t marry her.

      So I think there are genuine cases, but funnily enough, in none of the cases I know, the person wants an annulment, even though they are all separated. I think they think it reflects badly on themselves, as if they didn’t mean to make a true marriage, which they did, and that they will cause scandal if Catholic relatives and friends see them “re-marrying”.

      September 10, 2015 at 8:51 am
  • morgana

    As I said above fidelis I accept the church allows annulment and in the cases you speak about they may well fall into the criteria .You say none have sought annulment for reasons off not wanting to cause scandal.I have no problem with that.I would say my reason is slightly different in that should it ever be the case I wouldn’t want to marry again because rightly or wrongly once you have been taught marriage is for life for me that’s it.This is personal to me others may want another chance off happiness .

    September 10, 2015 at 9:05 am
    • Nicky


      With respect, I think you are missing the point. Marriage is for life, but if it is not a real marriage, that’s what the Church recognises. If someone is marrying in good faith, believing that their other half is taking their vows as seriously as you are, and then you discover that they don’t even believe in marriage, then that isn’t a true marriage. It’s a sham.

      I know of one case where the lady in question has been told she has grounds for an annulment and one of her reasons for thinking seriously about it is that she doesn’t want her children, especially her son, thinking that his experience of a husband and father is all there is. She would like to meet a solid Catholic who does believe in marriage and would help bring her children up in a good Catholic home with good example. Then they would see what a real man, a real husband and a real father actually looks like. At the same time, she doesn’t like the idea of bringing another man into the home. It’s a mess, it really is, and I’m in two minds about whether the annulment process should be simplified or scrapped altogether. Maybe the stress should be on preparation and in not allowing people who cohabit to marry in Church, but that won’t come under this “merciful” pope. His idea of mercy is to let everyone do what they want, have an easy life and forget about eternal salvation, death and judgment, heaven or hell.

      September 10, 2015 at 9:25 am
  • Therese


    I agree wholeheartedly with you. My mother always knew herself to be married in the eyes of God, even though the law ruled otherwise; any thought of entering into another relationship was foreign to her. It’s that kind of faithfulness to Church teaching which provides such a shining example to non-Catholics that we mean what we say we believe. Marriage is for life, even when you’ve married an expletive deleted. There are, of course, genuine cases of annulment, which the Church has always taught, but they must surely be rare.

    It’s a hard teaching, of course, and we don’t like hard teachings.

    September 10, 2015 at 9:41 am
  • morgana

    Thanks Therese for for your supportive comments.With respect Nicky I am not missing the point at all .I have clearly acknowledged that the church permits annulment in given circumstances.I did say that personally I felt it wouldn’t be an option I would take as I believe marriage is for life even if the situation warrants an annulment and that includes whether you were duped or not.Therese is correct it is a hard teaching

    September 10, 2015 at 11:34 am

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