The Gospel Truth

The Good Nazi

January 31, 2014
1 Comment

We have heard the new pope speak of his friendship with a few Marxists who he found were good men.  I assume he has made these personal judgments based on the Marxists’ professed compassion for the poor.

Marxists and liberals always express their devotion to the poor, the downtrodden and the underclass.  They expressively vow to use the powers of violence, revolution and eventually big government to right all the evils of nature, individualism and its economic expression capitalism.

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Some of the pope’s best friends?

Yet they generally do not believe in God, his teachings or his church.

So how can they be good?

Is a compassion for the poor all they need?

The pope has flirted with Liberation Theology.  His native Argentina is riven with its thinking, so it is not a stretch to assume he has had some interest in its teachings, even though his two predecessors condemned it as inconsistent with Christianity.

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Salvation through the poor?

These liberationisti believe that human salvation is collective and is attained primarily through a love of the poor.

What about the Nazis?

They were socialists just as the Marxists so why have we demonized them as the perfect historical ogres?

No, they did not express a specific love of the poor.  To the contrary the poor of the world were probably lumped in with the useless eaters, those who were deemed unworthy of life.

But Marxists also have always had their death panels that were designed to terminate the people who stood in the way of the revolution.  I am quite certain the religious poor would not be acceptable in their future earthly kingdom.

So killing people seems to be a useful method for both Marxists and Nazis  though only the Marxists seem to be good.

Yet maybe good is in the eye of the beholder and can have many different definitions that would qualify both the Marxist and the Nazi.

The good Nazi?

Their thinking seems predicated on what Pope Benedict called a dictatorship of relativity.

Most modern autocrats who despise Christian morality have to create a substitute morality to fill the moral vacuum they create when the old morality falls by the wayside.

They see the necessity to contrive a set of moral principles that would define good for that particular society whether it be Marxist, Nazi or even capitalist.

To the Marxist the main commandments would be a love of the Revolution and compassion for the poor.

But in essence that love for the poor seems to be just reserved for the generic poor.

One could say that like cartoon character, Lucy Van Pelt, they loved humanity but hated individual people.

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Loved humanity not people

If individuals, who happen to be poor do not accept the revolution and the party as their savior and lord, they will not live in its earthly paradise.

The same is true of the good Nazi.  They believed passionately in the Vaterland and the purity of its blood.  Theirs was a religion based on Land und Blutland and blood, while the Marxists had their religion of man.

People who did not fit in had to suffer their wrath but they were good to their own kind.  I have read stories about what good family men many of them were and even Hitler was kind to children and animals.  He never smoked, was a vegetarian and believed in gun control for the masses.

These latter ideas are all part of what has become an emerging social religion in this country.

President Barack Obama has joined in this debate.  Religion does not seem to be part of his make-up.  During his peripatetic life he has experienced many kinds of religious influence, starting with the atheism of most of his immediate family.

In Indonesia with his mother and step-father as a young boy he studied Islam and even attended a Catholic school for a short time.  In Chicago he joined the Church of Reverend Jeremiah Wright and his Black Liberation Theology was a mere subset of Marxist praxis and indicative of Obama’s deep commitment to racial socialism and Marxism.

I really don’t know how Obama could call himself a Christian when there was very little of Christ in Wright’s teachings.

It was Obama himself who said that the religion of America had become a practical atheism.

Barack and Michelle Obama, their children, and Chief Justice John Roberts.

Devout or just practical

So to carry on with my theme can an American atheist be a good person?

I know many of them do think they are good people while they demonize Republicans, prolifers, anti-gun control advocates and anyone else who has the effrontery to challenge their moral and political system.

I might add that in my personal travels I have met a few self-admitted atheists who seemed at face value to be good people.  But I doubt their goodness sprang from their denial of God’s existence.  More than likely they had subconsciously adopted from either their life experiences or professional training.

One self-declared atheist in particular, who used to call my radio show years ago, was adamantly and intellectually convinced abortion was a moral good for women yet he would do chores and errands for his aging mother.

When I told him that I thought he was doing the work of sainthood, he thanked me for seeing some good in him.  I surmise that would hold true of many others in his category as well.

Since the 1950s this kind of thinking, which harkens back to the French Enlightenment, has based morality, not on the ethos of Jesus Christ and his Church but on a self-contrived system of thought that has evolved from the science of man.

It was a 16th century renegade Catholic and a convert to Calvinism Pierre Bayle, whose writings argued that religion and morality should be separate. Bayle was not an atheist, at least not an open one, yet he believed that atheists though they might have a sticky time of it in the afterlife, could be as moral as anyone.  I would also surmise that many Americans would second this idea.

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Hume and Voltaire found him fascinating

His thinking fascinated many of the Enlightened thinkers into the 18th century, such as Hume , Voltaire, Spinoza and Leibniz.

According to Bayle all one had to do is be a good citizen to be a moral man.

This idea is certainly a dominant one in American society.

Many people, including millions of American Catholics would prefer be called Catholic Americans for their acceptance and even promotion of Obama’s secular values rather than American Catholics.

To Obama morality does not come from God or some other deity but from man, more specifically government men and by extension the culture they create.

So a society that reveres abortion on demand, promiscuous sex, drug use, divorce, and homosexuality can develop an ethos based on those life styles and actions.

This essentially had been the goal of the French Revolution, which first sought to destroy the Church, the crown and the middle class or bourgeoise.

Forebears of Progressivism

Its progressive heirs, such as liberals and Marxists, have labored to destroy the family, the Christian church and private property or capitalism.  It would seem that they are winning.

These targets are all the historic enemies and sinners against the new morality of big government.

Under the progressive aegis Marxists, abortionists and non-smokers can be considered good people.  All others must bow before these secular demigods and ask for the government’s forgiveness for their sins.

Since Nazism has not been redeemed, even though many of its teachings have become part of the new culture, they could not be considered good by this relative morality.

However had Germany won the war instead of Soviet Russia than we would probably be talking about the Good Nazi instead of the Good Marxist.

 

The Gift of Tongues

October 16, 2013
7 Comments

Two of the  more enduring images of the Bible are the gift of tongues and the Tower of Babel.

Priestly gifts and this would include Pope Francis have often been blessed with such spiritual and physical gifts as the gifts of speech, the gift of tongues interpretation and  prophecy.

The Tower of Babel refers to a story in Genesis.

According to this first book in the Old Testament, Moses related the story that after the Great Flood, a united humanity appeared from a land in the east called Shinar that spoke a universal language.

They resolved to build a city with a tower whose top may reach unto heaven.

This way they could make a name for themselves lest they be scattered abroad upon the face of the whole earth.

Because their intention was egotistically motivated because of the vanity of their nation, God came down from above and made their speech unintelligible.

Thus they were scattered over the face of the earth.

A confusion of tongues

I think if a priest, especially a new and green pontiff were not extremely careful he could run the risk of turning discussion of the Catholic faith into an occasion of confusion and misunderstanding.

Pope Francis has said many thing since his becoming pope last April that have upset and even confused many of the faithful.

Of course his statements gave hope to the liberal wing of the Church.

Quite frankly I can understand the concern that many Orthodox Catholic have with his pronouncements.

The first statement that concerned me was when he told Catholics that as a Church we cannot insist only on issues related to abortion, gay marriage and the use of contraceptive methods…

I hadn’t realized that was what we were doing.

In fact from the pulpit one hardly ever hears about the evils of abortion, euthanasia or homosexuality.

The pope did state that we had to  talk about them in context.

I submit that is exactly what we are doing when we do talk about these issues.

The context is a culture war that was started by the Marxists, dating back to Sardinian communist, Antonio Gramsci, who ordained a long march through western culture in the early 1920s.

The advent of the culture war was predicted many years  ago by Russian author Igor Shafarevich, whoreduced the Communist Manifesto’s 10 planks to three specific targets, which were private property, the Christian religion and the family.

The pope seems to have failed to note that these basic human institution that have provided the moral and physical glue for Western Civilization have been under vicious assault for many generations.

Another statement that turned a few devout heads was when the pope opined on women in the church.

Has turned a few heads as well

Of course this is a loaded question that the last four popes have had to walk on cracked eggshells to address.

The pope suggested that the feminine genius is needed whenever we make important decisions.

While that sounds like a nice, even flattering thing to say about the gentle sex…especially the part about the feminine genius, what does it mean in the context of  Church teaching?

Well for starters I am sure  someone longing for a female priesthood could seriously reason that women should become ordained because they could then apply this genius, which I wish he had defined, to the important decisions that priests make each and every day.

Then the pontiff was asked what the Church’s role in the modern world.

 

He answered that what the church needs most today ability to heal wounds and warm the hearts of the faithful.

 

The pope offered the image of the Church as a field hospital.

 

I am not at all certain what he means by that but it does not seem to agree with mu childhood and adolescent understanding of the what the Catholic Church was supposed to stand for?

I guess I fear that we will fast become a church of social workers.

 

 

 

I have to stifle my urge to laugh or make a glib remark because he is our pope but I always thought that the church’s divinely ordained role was to lead the faithful to heaven.

Unless the pope is a believer in universal salvation, which was declared a heresy 120 years ago, that’s the only thing that counts.

As Hillary Clinton likes to say among the ruins of our foreign policy, what difference…does it make….if you gain or heal the entire world and suffer the loss of your immortal soul?

 

Nothing...nada...if the church is relinquishing this primary function why do we really need a church?

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Has the purpose changed?

 

There are plenty of medical and psychology organizations who will heal wounds and warm hearts.

Then there is the issue of Liberation Theology.

I have written about it for the Mindszenty Foundation and am scheduled in March to talk about it in Chicago for them as well.

Basically it is a relatively new teaching about the poor, especially in Latin America where it originated well over 40 years ago.

It has led to such derivatives as the so-called preferential option for the poor and an obsession for helping the poor no matter what the means.

This has essentially led to trillions of dollars in spending that has been borrowed from America’s future .

This is standing G. K. Chesterton’s idea of the democracy of the dead where traditions and customs of the past must be recognized as still valuable.

With today’s leaders we have the tyranny of the living.

My additional research has uncovered the fact that Liberation Theology was essentially the idea of the KGB and the Soviet’s attempt to undermine its chief antagonist, the Catholic Church.

Attack on the Church

Personally I think you could trace it back to the ideas of the Enlightenment in the 18th century, which sought to do away with religion, royalty and the middle class.

Pope Francis is considered the pope of the poor.

So when he became pontiff many on the left assumed that he would jump right in on their behalf and support Liberation Theology.

My guess is that the only thing that has held him back is that its proponents make no excuses for the necessary violence that is left in the wake of this powerful abstraction.

Behind the growing skepticism is the fear in some quarters that Francis’s all-embracing style and spontaneous speech, so open as it is to interpretation, are undoing decades of church efforts to speak clearly on Catholic teachings.

Some conservatives also feel that the pope is undermining them at a time when they are already being sidelined by an increasingly secular culture.

Francis is certainly a lot different at least in the beginning than both of his predecessors.

During the previous three decades, popes John Paul II and Benedict had a similar focus. Each wanted to make orthodox teachings crystal clear so Catholics would not get confused or lost what Benedict XVI called the slavery of relativism.

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All the same focus?

That is precisely the risk Pope Francis has been running since his rise to the throne of Peter.

We all need to pray that his gift of tongues does not degenerate into a new kind of theological babel and misunderstanding.

The stakes are just too high!


About author

After graduating from Holy Cross, Bill Borst earned an MA in Asian History from St. John's University and a Ph.D in American History from St. Louis University. (1972) A former New Yorker, he taught for many years in the St. Louis area, while also hosting a weekly radio show on WGNU from 1984-2006. He currently is a regular substitute for conservative Phyllis Schlafly on KSIV radio. (1320) He is the author of two books on social history, "Liberalism: Fatal Consequences," and "The Scorpion and the Frog: A Natural Conspiracy." He just retired as the Features editor of the Mindszenty Foundation Monthly Report. In his 11 years from 2003-2013 he wrote nearly 130 essays on Catholic culture and world affairs. Many in St. Louis also know him as the "Baseball Professor," because of a course that he offered at Maryville College from 1973-74. It was arguably the first fully-accredited baseball history course in the Midwest.The author of several short books on the old St. Louis Browns, he started the St. Louis Browns Historical Society in 1984. In 2009 his first two plays were produced on the local stage. "The Last Memory of an Ol' Brownie Fan," ran six performances at the Sound Stage in Crestwood and "A Perfect Choice" ran for two performances at the Rigali Center Theater in Shrewsberry. His third play, "A Moment of Grace," ran six performances at DeSmet High School in January of 2011with First Run Theater in January of 2011. He is currently working on a 4th play, "A Family Way," which is a comedy about a happy dysfunctional family. He can reached at bbprof@sbcglobal.net

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