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Salve! Feel free to rummage around the premises as time or inclination permits. Scroll down to read articles by the veterans of the blogosphere.

Adult Stem Cell Success

On The Transcendentals of Being

We are not just material beings, but spiritual persons with a need for meaning, purpose, and fulfillment that transcends the visible confines of this world. This longing for transcendence is a longing for truth, goodness, and beauty. Truth, goodness, and beauty are called the transcendentals of being, because they are aspects of being. Everything in existence has these transcendentals to some extent. God, of course, as the source of all truth, goodness, and beauty, has these transcendentals to an infinite degree. Oftentimes, he draws us to himself primarily through one of these transcendentals. St. Augustine, who was drawn to beauty in all its creaturely forms, found the ultimate beauty he was seeking in God, his creator, the beauty “ever ancient, ever new.”—Sister Gabriella Yi, O.P.

Mass Without Needless Distractions

There’s a peacefulness and naturalness that come from knowing what you’re going to get or what you’re supposed to do. As a layman, there is nothing more consoling and conducive to prayer than showing up at a traditional Latin Mass and simply being able to rely on the sameness of everything that will happen, from start to finish — everything for the glory of God and the sanctification of the people, even in the humblest conditions…(it) all works, everything comes together with a blessed inevitability, and one can surrender to the Mass, to prayer, to the Lord. It is a recipe for sanity and sanctity in a world that is characterized by escalating insanity and unholiness.—Dr. Peter Kwasniewski. h/t The Liturgy Guy.

Thursday, July 30, 2015

R U 4 real?! Human pesticide drug RU486 arrives in Canaduh.

Apparently, science and morality matter not (or very little) to those who seek to profit from the deaths of innocent unborn human lives and the loss of the lives of their mothers, as a LifeSiteNews report makes clear.
July 29, 2015 (LifeSiteNews) - Health Canada has confirmed that it has approved the controversial abortion drug RU-486. Pro-life leaders say they are stunned by the news of the decision to expand abortion in a country where abortion on demand at taxpayer expense is already the norm.
Heavy bleeding, nausea, vomiting, and painful uterine contractions are common side-effects of the two-drug combo, which requires three trips to the doctor's office over a two week period.
As of 2011, fourteen U.S. women had died after taking RU-486 and a total of 2,207 reported adverse effects after using the drug, according to a report from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration.
A fact sheet on the drug by American Life League notes that RU stands for Roussel Uclaf, the manufacturer of the RU-486 pill. “Roussel Uclaf is owned by Hoechst A.G., one of several corporations spun off after World War II from the giant I. G. Farben chemical firm, the firm that supplied Hitler with the Zyklon B gas used to kill Jews and Christians in the Third Reich death camps,” they note.

The alchemy of marketing.

We can and should be thankful for the work drug companies have done to improve people's health and well being. Unfortunately, pharmaceutical companies are prone to a severe temptation. Drug companies are highly motivated to produce drugs that have the greatest potential for profit. Constant vigilance must be maintained to rein in governments eager to fill tax coffers (to cover the costs charged to government by drug companies) by hastily approving dangerous drugs marketed as having the potential for widespread health benefits.

Unfortunately, too, for women's health, large multinational pharmaceutical corporations frequently ignore their own research. Drugs represent massive investment. Companies are eager to recoup their investment and then some. So, research that contradicts a drug's safety or effectiveness can be marginalized, swept under the proverbial rug. Drugs that never should have seen the light of day end up approved by government regulatory agencies and prescribed by physicians who have only been given a partial view of the consequences of a certain drug's use.

One such drug is drospirenone/ethinyl estradiol.
Drug Watch: Yaz and Yasmin
Released in the United States in 2006, Yaz (drospirenone/ethinyl estradiol) is a birth control pill manufactured by Bayer. Yaz is a sister drug to Yasmin, which was approved in 2001. Both medications contain drospirenone/ethinyl estradiol, so they carry the same risk.
From 2008 to 2009, Yaz was the top-selling birth control pill in the United States. In April 2012, Yaz continued in popularity as the fourth best-selling oral contraceptive. Yet several studies show that Yaz puts women at an increased risk for blood clots. Blood clots can contribute to deep vein thrombosis (DVTs), pulmonary embolism (PE), stroke or heart attack.
On April 10, 2012, the FDA required Yaz to include a warning that drospirenone-containing pills increase the risk of blood clots by threefold. Also, a former FDA commissioner, David Kessler, filed an affidavit, claiming that Bayer withheld early reports of blood clots from the FDA in 2004.
A multidistrict litigation (MDL) has been set up in Illinois to handle the 10,000-plus lawsuits over Yaz and Yasmin side effects.
Given the litany of side-effects and deaths related to the use of RU486, one could be forgiven for harbouring the question, 'What the hell is Health Canaduh thinking?' Is Health Canaduh indifferent to the science, the human costs associated with the use of said drug?

How many Canadian women will now perish as a result of using RU486? Will advocates for use of the drug attempt to whitewash women's deaths by saying the product was misused, or side-effects were not properly understood nor accommodated? Will women become the victims of marketing campaigns that treat women as objects who merely represent profit potential to pharmaceutical corporations?

History repeating itself?

Once upon a time another drug was hailed as a cure-all. All hailed thalidomide as a wonder drug.
Thousands of pregnant women took the drug to relieve (morning sickness). At the time of the drug's development, scientists did not believe any drug taken by a pregnant woman could pass across the placental barrier and harm the developing foetus, even though the effect of alcohol on foetal development had been documented by case studies on alcoholic mothers since at least 1957.
Hence, while initially considered safe, the drug was responsible for teratogenic deformities in children born after their mothers used it during pregnancies, prior to the third trimester. In November 1961, thalidomide was taken off the market due to massive pressure from the press and public. Experts estimate that the drug thalidomide led to the death of approximately 2,000 children and serious birth defects in more than 10,000 children, about 5,000 of them in West Germany.
Deceptive marketing... it's happened before.
Thalidomide became one of the most successful prescription drugs in the history of medicine. In the UK, the British pharmaceutical company The Distillers Company (Biochemicals) Ltd, a subsidiary of Distillers Co. Ltd. (now part of Diageo plc), marketed thalidomide under the brand name Distaval® as a remedy for morning sickness throughout the United Kingdom, Australia and New Zealand. Their advertisement claimed that "Distaval can be given with complete safety to pregnant women and nursing mothers without adverse effect on mother or child... Outstandingly safe Distaval has been prescribed for nearly three years in this country."
In Canada, the history of the drug thalidomide dates back to April 1, 1961. There were many different forms sold, with the most common variant being Talimol. Two months after Talimol went on sale, pharmaceutical companies sent physicians letters warning about the risk of birth defects. It was not until March 2, 1962, that both drugs were banned from the Canadian market by the FDD, and soon afterward physicians were warned to destroy their supplies.
The drug thalidomide's birth defects in children affected many people's lives, and from these events came the formation of the group called The Thalidomide Victims Association of Canada, a group of 120 Canadian survivors.
The Society of Toxicology of Canada was formed after the effects of thalidomide were made public, focusing on toxicology as a discipline separate from pharmacology. The need for the testing and approval of the toxins in certain pharmaceutical drugs became more important after the disaster. The Society of Toxicology of Canada is responsible for the Conservation Environment Protection Act, focusing on researching the impact to human health of chemical substances.
The controversial drug thalidomide is still used to treat a variety of conditions and diseases.

Wednesday, July 29, 2015

Edge of night; edge of darkness. An apocalypse for Canadians.

We stand at the edge of a long night, a creeping darkness. One would have to be an ostrich with his head in the sand to miss the signs heralding a season of woe. The end of the world? Hardly. The end of one civilization?

Internal political and social instability and collapse, economic tremors, the rise of belligerent nations, terror plots... . Liturgical mayhem may seem somewhat insignificant compared to the other challenges to the security and well being of persons.

Sexual politics dominate and distract the West. A sitting American president  engages in neo-colonialism by attempting to foist corrupt values on African nations. An American mega-corporation that receives public funding traffics in baby body parts. Its allies, who include that same sitting president, attempt to provide it cover. Those who are directly responsible for such crimes against humanity and crimes against culture cannot see that their actions are destroying innocence and are robbing yet another generation of its soul.
And fear ye not them that kill the body, and are not able to kill the soul: but rather fear him that can destroy both soul and body in hell.—St. Matthew 10:28.
The battle for souls is far more dangerous and profound than any other temporal struggle. The campaign for people's hearts and minds will not be won by those who seek to impose inhuman ideologies by force. Yes, the darkness has already lost. The Light is conquering. Yet, many souls—between now and the final battle—will be dragged into oblivion if we do nothing to identify and confront the problem, protect the innocent, challenge the ignorant to reconsider their allegiances, confront and oppose evil with the love of Christ. The task at hand is to try and reach as many souls as possible with the saving news of the Holy Gospel.


The descent of Western societies into madness will not be halted any time soon. We need battle ready foot soldiers to bring the Gospel into the marketplace of ideas. Real Catholics must run for public office. They must run political campaigns with integrity. It is not enough to be another cafeteria Catholic—which is to say an unfaithful Catholic—in a day and age when cafeteria Catholics have compounded problems in society and in the Church to an unprecedented degree. Cafeteria politicians in Canada have, it must be admitted, created in the order following a litany of vices constituting the culture of death: divorce culture (Trudeau I, 1967 as Minister of Justice); abortion culture (Pierre-Elliot Trudeau, 1969, as Prime Minister); redefinition of marriage (Paul Martin, 2005); euthanasia culture (Justin (son of Pierre-Elliot) Trudeau, Leader of the Liberal Party of Canada, 2014). The aforementioned Cafeteria Catholics' actions constitute a transgression nothing short of spiritual treason.

In Canada, our Canadian "niceness" has replaced authenticity: moral authenticity; intellectual authenticity; political authenticity; social authenticity. Cafeteria Catholicism must be run out-of-town, so to speak, deported.

Fake is as old as the Eden tree.—Orson Welles

Our "nice" liturgies reflect our "nice", polite Canadian society. There is little that is polite about a country that does nothing to protect its weakest citizens. There is little to separate the attitude of indifference toward unborn human life from indifference to God and His soul-saving Gospel proclaimed by His Catholic Church.

There is little about the Ordinary Form of the Mass as commonly celebrated in any Canadian parish that is capable of inspiring people to take a stand for the Faith and/or defend the Liturgy from attempts to make it resemble more the loosely defined manifesto of contemporary socio-political correctness. The witness to Christ by far too many Canadian Catholics is, in a word, limp.

Surely the Fathers of the Second Vatican Council did not have in mind the trashy liturgy we have nowadays. Well, there were a few bishops back then who, more freemasons than Catholic bishops, attempted to dislodge the liturgical reform from continuity with the received Tradition of the Church. Now, don't get your knickers in a twist. The preceding thought was not an invitation to jump into the fetid swamp of the Bugnini freemason conspiracy theory.

Boot Camp

We need better formed Catholics. That is, Catholics formed with a robust knowledge of the Truth of Christ taught by His Church.

Where are Catholics formed in the Faith? In the Liturgy. The Holy Spirit acts in and through the Mass to bring people closer to Christ, to shape us in the way of love, hope, truth and authentic freedom. Parents who receive this formation carry it to their homes, the domestic church wherein their children are nurtured in the way of sacrificial love and communion with Christ and His Church.

Catholics will require a more robust liturgical formation in the Faith if there is to be a hope of continuing to serve in the medical and healthcare professions and in educational institutions.

Given likely future circumstances, Catholics will necessarily have to act more covertly with regards to evangelization given the pressure to conform to the ideologies imposed upon them. However, there will be no avoiding the risk or likelihood of censure, fine, loss of employment and possible prison terms for acting according to conscience, a conscience fully formed in the Catholic Faith.

How will we form good Catholics if the Liturgy is corrupt?

The Mass is the home of the formation of the soul. As it is, most parishes are slums where people are deprived of authentic formation in the Faith, the detail or nuance required to sustain people whose intellectual-moral diet is complicated by neo-pagan societal pressures.
For our wrestling is not against flesh and blood; but against principalities and power, against the rulers of the world of this darkness, against the spirits of wickedness in the high places.—Ephesians 6:12.
Why was it that God, through twelve very human men, could transform an empire, but now a billion plus Catholics cannot manage the conversion of the world? Could it be that quantity matters not and quality is lacking?

Tolerance is the virtue of the man without convictions.—Gilbert K. Chesterton

We can be certain that, as the neo-paganism continues to spread, Canadian niceness (a.k.a., "tolerance") will be reserved for the darlings of the statist quo, the happy secular and liberal religionists who inhabit the morally devastated urban precincts like citizens of the bloodthirsty Aztec empire who gathered at the base of a temple pyramid to drink in the obliteration of victims sacrificed to some insatiable deity in whom the populace placed their desires for success, wealth and power.

Basement Believers

Faithful Catholics should be prepared to be reacquainted with the power of the catacomb. We have failed to defend the Faith in the public square. We have allowed civilization to be appropriated by conscienceless hedonists who, among many other detestable character traits, care only about the fulfillment of their own baser instincts. It matters not to them whether other people are hurt by their deformed sense of entitlement.

The catacomb experience will require us to be as creative as our Catholic Chinese brethren who well understand the need to celebrate the Mass with integrity under clandestine circumstances.

Domestic Church

Society will only be scoured free of its state sanctioned detritus (intellectual and cultural genocide) when people of goodwill till the garden and, over several generations, produce a harvest of better citizens whose memory is long and true and eager to consign to oblivion the irrational ideologies of the current generation. That garden is the family authentically formed in the Divine Liturgy, the Liturgy that is Christ present and acting in His Church. We need holy parents raising holy children, children of hope and Gospel joy, children who are real human beings and obedient to Holy Mother Church.

The Church's mission must necessarily be grounded in prayer, prayer that conforms man, heart and soul, to the will of God.

What is the Church's sublime prayer? The Mass! We must be Mass-directed, otherwise we will be misdirected. To be Mass-directed, we must be faithful to the Tradition of the Church. The Mass is nothing if it is not living Tradition, the living Faith of the holy saints (versus the dead faith of the relativist). Mass without continuity with Sacred Tradition is not the Mass. It is mostly an invention of man.

Monday, July 27, 2015

New Armenian Catholic Patriarch—ad multos annos!

Vatican News

The Armenian Catholic Church has a new Patriarch—Armenian Catholic Patriarch of Cilicia, his Beatiude Grégoire Pierre XX Ghabroyan.

Audio news report: CLICK HERE.


United Arab Emirates: a refuge for Christians.

From AsiaNews.It (7/22/2015):

Abu Dhabi (AsiaNews/Agencies) - The United Arab Emirates on Monday announced new legislation imposing harsh sentences including the death penalty for crimes related to religious hatred.
A presidential decree by President His Highness Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan, distributed by the official WAM news agency, criminalises any act that stirs religious hatred and also prohibits discrimination "on the basis of religion, caste, creed, doctrine, race, colour or ethnic origin".
Follow up story featuring commentary (7/24/2015): CLICK HERE for full story.
Beirut (AsiaNews) – The United Arab Emirates (UAE) has adopted a new law that bans “all forms of discrimination based on religion, caste, creed, doctrine, race, colour or ethnic origin,” Fr. Samir Khalil Samir told AsiaNews. This is a “step forward,” according to the Egyptian Jesuit, one that runs counter to what other countries do in the region, many of which are still under the thumb of Islamic totalitarianism.
The UAE’s openness compared to other Muslim nations is further evinced by the presence of 24 churches on its territory, partially built with funds provided by local rulers. As a local bishop once said, “The UAE is the only country where Christians are well treated”. It is no accident that many Christians who live in Saudi Arabia travel to Abu Dhabi for Christmas and Easter celebrations (pictured below).

The quest for universal recognition of inalienable rights necessarily including the fundamental dignity of man requires a sustained and informed effort predicated on a dialogue in the truth, the truth which includes discussion of the limitations or restrictions and dangers that Christians and other non-muslims face in most Middle Eastern countries.

A very large part of the effort to promote inalienable rights also includes overcoming the bias in the Western secular media that continues the myth that there is no widespread persecution of Christians. That bias is more one of silence, unfortunately, and tends to confirm the perception that the secular media is either incompetent or willfully ignorant of events, or both. The omission of daily attacks on Christians and other non-muslim minorities constitutes a glaring (and, frankly, damning) oversight on the part of secular media organizations, one that contradicts the dignity of journalism to which journalists should aspire. That is, the dignity and responsibility which compels journalists to report the facts truthfully, wholly and in a timely manner. Without responsible journalists, no democracy can function. One could hope that some independent journalist, if such a journalist hasn't already done so, will thoroughly investigate a likely correlation between the demise of fundamental freedoms in the West and the apparent demise of responsible journalism.
Christians routinely face intense persecution throughout the Middle East and on the African continent from extremist Islamic groups. Journalists would do well to acquaint themselves with and report the experiences of Christians living in countries, for starters, that do very little to protect non-muslim citizens from violence: the burning of Coptic churches, homes and businesses; acid thrown in the faces of women; the rape of nuns and children; etc. Religious blasphemy laws in Pakistan, for example, are routinely used to falsely accuse Christians and deny Christians a right to due process.
As mentioned above, the attack on fundamental freedoms is not limited to foreign nations. Freedom of speech is under attack in North America, whether by those who seek to silence criticism of domestic terrorism by Islamists or by militant secularists who work to silence the religious voice in the public square concerning any of the hot button issues. Given the anti-Christian bias at home, and, for example, the use of human rights commissions to persecute Christians, there is little hope that western countries will defend international religious freedom.
Freedom is exercised in relationships between human beings. Every human person, created in the image of God, has the natural right to be recognized as a free and responsible being. All owe to each other this duty of respect. The right to the exercise of freedom, especially in moral and religious matters, is an inalienable requirement of the dignity of the human person. This right must be recognized and protected by civil authority within the limits of the common good and public order.—CCC 1738
It may be that the UAE is a long way off from permitting Catholics and Orthodox Christians, some 10 per cent of the population, to host religious processions in the streets and Eucharistic congresses, or from permitting the freedom to allow muslim citizens to accept invitations to attend Mass and become Catholic if they so choose. Nevertheless, the freedoms Christians do enjoy in the UAE are far, far more advanced than most other countries in the region.

Thanks be to God and to the rulers of the United Arab Emirates for allowing Christians to enjoy an oasis of acceptance in the UAE.