Always Trying To Find A Way
Thomas A. Droleskey
Men may come and men may go, because God has left plenty of room for the to and fro of their free-will; but the substantial lines of nature and the not less substantial lines of Eternal Law have never changed, are not changing and never will change. There are bounds beyond which one may stray as far as one sees fit, but to do so ends in death; there are limits which empty philosophical fantasizing may have one mock or not take seriously, but they put together an alliance of hard facts and nature to chastise anybody who steps over them. And history has sufficiently taught, with frightening proof from the life and death of nations, that the reply to all violators of the outline of "humanity" is always, sooner or later, catastrophe.
From the dialectic of Hegel onwards, we have had dinned in our ears what are nothing but fables, and by dint of hearing them so often, many people end up by getting used to them, if only passively. But the truth of the matter is that Nature and Truth, and the Law bound up in both, go their imperturbable way, and they cut to pieces the simpletons who upon no grounds whatsoever believe in radical and far-reaching changes in the very structure of man.
The consequences of such violations are not a new outline of man, but disorders, hurtful instability of all kinds, the frightening dryness of human souls, the shattering increase in the number of human castaways, driven long since out of people's sight and mind to live out their decline in boredom, sadness and rejection. Aligned on the wrecking of the eternal norms are to be found the broken families, lives cut short before their time, hearths and homes gone cold, old people cast to one side, youngsters willfully degenerate and -- at the end of the line -- souls in despair and taking their own lives. All of which human wreckage gives witness to the fact that the "line of God" does not give way, nor does it admit of any adaption to the delirious dreams of the so-called philosophers! (Giuseppe Cardinal Siri,
Men's Dress Worn By Women.)
Although the late Giuseppe Cardinal Siri, Archbishop of Genoa, Italy, from May 29, 1946, to July 6, 1987, wrote the words quoted above in an "notification" to his clergy about the harm of women wearing masculine attire, his words have application to the simple truth that false ideas always produce bad consequences. While God does indeed intends to bring good out of the evil done by men, He never positively wills us to commit any evil or positively wills us to believe in false ideas that can lead only to evil consequences. To believe in a falsehood, even if one is sincere in such a belief, is to permit oneself to be led in a thousand different and frequently contradictory directions.
Yes, I have used this quotation from Cardinal Siri's remarks and the paragraph just below it several times on this site. I will never tire of doing so as we live in a land where enemies of Catholic truth have always been in charge of the means of what is called "public education" and of mass communications and entertainment. These enemies of Catholic truth have been inspired, whether or not they realize it, to devise a whole language of perdition so that words can be turned into phrases that will sink so deep into the psyche of unsuspecting people, including, of course, Catholics, that even those who oppose recognize and oppose the evil represented by those phrases will adopt them in an effort to blunt their impact, to say nothing who fall for the slogans that are meant to take the place of rational thought and to substitute the "wisdom" of naturalists for the truths of the Holy Faith.
Sloganeering is nothing new, of course. It is what the forerunners of today's naturalists and conciliar revolutionaries amongst the relativists of ancient Athens in the Fifth Century before the Nativity of Our Blessed Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ:
"It is as though we had returned to the age of Protagoras and the
Sophists, the age when the art of persuasion--whose modern equivalent is
advertising slogans, publicity, propaganda meetings, the press, the
cinema, and radio--took the place of thought and controlled the fate of
cities and accomplished coups d'etat. So the ninth book of Plato's
Republic looks like a description of contemporary events." (Simone Weil,
quoted in Russell Kirk, The Roots of American Order.)
Although a serious study of the misuse of language to advance the aims of various false religions and ideologies and philosophies and fads would take a book length manuscript to complete, a few examples from the history of the last few decades will suffice for purposes of this brief follow-up commentary to Forty-Three Years After Humanae Vitae).
For example, many Catholics who oppose the surgical execution of innocent children in their mothers' wombs refer to the pro-death or baby-killing movement as the "pro-choice" movement, thereby conceding the linguistic high ground to those in support of the direct, intentional taking of innocent human lives. No one has a "right" to "choose" whether to directly kill any innocent human being, no matter he is in the sanctuary of his mother's womb or at any point thereafter. Using the phrase obscures the reality of what it is the merchants of death and their apologists support.
Let me cite just two more examples for the sake of brevity, leaving aside such slogans as "liberty," "freedom," "equality," "democracy," "rights," "liturgical renewal," "hermeneutic of continuity and discontinuity," "theological updating," "diversity," and "tolerance" for another time when this writer is more rested, although each has been treated on this site many times in the past.
Here are the two other quick examples.
One should never refer to a baby-killing center as an "abortion clinic" or a "women's healthcare center." No kind of "health care" is given in an abortuary. We should refer to such a center of killing as an abortuary or an abortion mill or a baby-killing center.
Finally, a perfectly good word in the English language, "gay," has been coopted by those engaged in and/or supportive of perverse sins against the Sixth and Ninth Commandments. Such people are unrepentant sinners steeped in perversity. Period. No one who is sinning unrepentantly can be "gay" as such as person is rebelling not against God and thus the eternal good of his own immortal soul but against the very health and well-being of his body.
Thus it is that the phrase "natural family planning," which refers to a concept that was foreign to the mind of the Catholic Church at any time in her history, as was noted at length two days ago, has become so commonly accepted as a part of popular discourse as to be used by Catholics all across and up and down the vast expanse of ecclesiastical divide, therefore signifying that "family planning" without use of contraception is part of the patrimony of the Holy Faith, if not part of the Sacred Deposit of Fait Itself.
As Mrs. Randy Engel explained in the comments that she offered about Forty-Three Years After Humanae Vitae that are found on this site's home page, "In any war, words are weapons." Mrs. Engel, whose study of Giovanni Montini/Paul VI's "birth control commission" has been at least six months in the making and will make a very important contribution when published to dispel once and for all the thought that the phrase has any relationship whatsoever to Catholic teaching, wrote the following about the origin of the phrase "natural family planning" in her great study about the pro-family planning work of a conciliar revolutionary, the late "Bishop" James T. McHugh, The McHugh Chronicles:
quotes of Rev. Daly and Rev. Rice cited at the beginning of this chapter, we
can obtain a clearer understanding of the anti-child nature of so-called
“family planning.” But where did the term “natural family
planning” (NFP) originate? And how did it become part of the Catholic lexicon
on marriage and family life?
as this writer can determine (from an NFP source present at the scene of the
crime), credit for the term “natural family planning” or
“NFP” goes to a pro-abort bureaucrat by the name of Dr. Philip Corfman, who made the suggestion at one of
the grant-seeking expeditions of NFP leaders at the Agency for International
Development (USAID) within the State Department in the early 1970s.
adopting the “language of the enemy,” the NFP Movement also adopted
the anti-baby ideology of the enemy. This was its first grave error. The second
was to begin to feed from the government’s anti-life Title X trough. And
the third and final error was to cooperate with compulsory programs of
population control, but this was still some time in the future. (25) (www.newengelpublishing.com; you may order this book, whose chapters were published originally, if I recall correctly, in The Wanderer in the late-1980s, from Mrs. Engel's website.)
As was pointed out two days ago, it was Humanae Vitae, issued by Giovanni Montini/Paul VI on July 25, 1968, that, although reaffirming the Catholic Church's prohibition of the use of contraception, embraced the personalist philosophy of Dietrich von Hildebrand and Father Herbert Doms, a philosophy that had been condemned twice by the Holy See (in 1943 and in 1944) and referenced by Pope Pius XII in his October 29, 1951, Address to Midwives on the Nature of Their Profession, that "opened wide the doors" to the use of various methods of determining a woman's monthly fertile and infertile periods without any serious restrictions whatsoever. Humanae Vitae, of course, turned Pope Pius XII's conditions for the lawful, permissible exclusive use of a woman's monthly periods of infertility on their head. The use of the phrase "natural family planning" has thus ceded ground to the "population control" movement to such an extent that the acceptance of "family planning" by "moral" means has become so widespread amongst Catholics today Catholics who reject it and the ideology it represents are considered to be suspect of having defected from the Holy Faith.
It was not only the work of Dietrich von Hildebrand, whose Sign of Contradiction, published in 1969, gave him an opportunity to defend Humanae Vitae as a supporter of the "pope" while putting into wider circulation his condemned teaching that inverted the ends of marriage, that helped to give rise to the "natural family planning" mentality that is so widely accepted in Catholic circles today. Father John C. Ford, S.J., who opposed the von Hildebrand/Doms teaching on marriage and is considered to be largely responsible for convincing Montini/Paul VI to hold the line against contraception despite the majority report of the "Pontifical" Commission of Population Family and Birth Rate, did so in his own way in 1964 in a book he coauthored with Father Gerald Kelly, S.J., Contemporary Moral Theology, Volume 2, believing that God's moral law did not oblige parents to have more children than was necessary to preserve the human race.
may be difficulty in determining the exact limit for various countries;
but certainly today in the United States a family of four children would
be sufficient to satisfy the duty. (Fathers John C. Ford, S.J., and Gerald Kelly, S.J., Contemporary Moral Problems, Volume 2, The Newman Press, 1964, p. 423.)
This was not the mind of Pope Pius XII, which is why Fathers Ford and Kelly, who wrote cautiously about the matter while our last true pope was alive, simply waited. And, yes, once again, I am not manufacturing any kind of "straw men." As hard as Father Ford worked against contraception and fought against those who supported it on the aching on marriage and is considered to be largely responsible for convincing Montini/Paul VI to hold the line against contraception despite the majority report of the "Pontifical" Commission for Population Family and Birth Rate, he was on the "cutting edge" of theological thought in the 1950s. He just had to wait until the death of Pope Pius XII. Father Ford's own protege, Dr. Germain Grisez, has noted this as so in a glowing tribute to him that is filled with very interesting factual details of the work of the "papal" "birth control" commission:
Though Ford never publicly criticized Pius XII or the Roman Curia, he
shared the dissatisfaction then common among theologians with the overly
cautious attitude of the Holy See toward innovations of any sort. He
also thought Pius XII had attempted to settle some difficult moral
questions without adequate study and reflection. Thus, Ford was pleased
by the more open approach of the new pontificate and looked forward to
the coming Council in the hope that it would pave the way for needed
renewal in the Church, not least in moral theology. (John C. Ford, S.J.)
What was that I was saying a few days ago about undercurrents in at least some of those old 1940s and 1950s theology manuals? The "Second" Vatican Council and the Protestant and Masonic Novus Ordo service did not materialize out of thin air. The groundwork had been prepared, proximately speaking, over the course of many decades, including by means of the liturgical changes of the 1950s that were meant, even though Pope Pius XII did not realize it as he accepted the false representations made to him about those changes by Fathers Annibale Bugnini, C.M., Ferdinando Antonelli, O.F.M., to lead to what Montini/Paul VI himself called the "contemporary mentality" when promulgating the Novus Ordo missal on April 3, 1969 (see Missale Romanum). Theologians bided their time. They got the "opening" that they had been hoping for with the "election" of Angelo Roncalli/John XXIII on October 28, 1958.
Yes, Father Ford, as bravely as he worked against contraception and abortion, was in the forefront of theological thought that resulted in what is called today "natural family planning," a term that he lived long enough to see used and which he himself endorsed according to the "teaching" of Giovanni Montini/Paul VI. He helped to pave the way for the "contemporary mentality" of family limitation by "natural" means that has hoodwinked Catholics all up and down the vast expanse of the ecclesiological divide as the adversary once again uses those who think they are opposing him to his bidding for him.
Father Ford, whose role on the the "papal birth control commission" will be explored at length in Mrs. Engel's forthcoming study on that "commission," took a view of marriage and the family, although decidedly different than that of Dietrich von Hildebrand and Father Herbert Doms, that is contrary to Catholic teaching.
The McHugh Chronicles conveys the thoroughly Catholic teaching of Dr. Herbert Ratner, who died in 1997, on marriage on the family:
but God disposes! While this truism applies to all human efforts, it appears to
be particularly so in the matter of the procreation of children. God’s
Master Plan for marriage and family life is revealed in Nature, in Holy
Scripture and in the magisterial teachings of the Catholic Church.
literary masterpiece, The Natural
Institution of The Family (Marriage: An Office of Nature), Dr. Herbert Ratner (whom this writer
never tires of quoting) reminds us that:
are two revelations: one found in the Book of Scriptures and the other in the
Book of Nature; one communicated through the words of the Son (and His Vicar on
earth), the other through nature from a lexicon written by the Father.... These
teachings, with the help of grace, confirm, fortify, enrich and transform the
teachings of Nature to help make good the promise of Nature. (1)
matter of reproduction, Ratner notes, each and every living species has a mode
of reproduction which is characteristic of that species, and man is no
exception. “... the mode of reproduction characteristic of man is a life
long monogamy as exemplified by the traditional family,” writes Ratner.
“Man is a relatively sterile animal,”
Ratner continues, “therefore children are a gift biologically as well as
relative sterility is also why “couples flock to birth control clinics in their twenties and to
sterility clinics in their thirties,” he continues. (4)
that “Children mature parents more than parents mature children,” Ratner makes a persuasive case for young
couples to have their children early in marriage when the sexual urge is at its
peak and when Mother Nature, genetically and physically, favors youthful
child-bearing and child-rearing.(5) Breast-feeding provides the nursing mother
with a normative spacing of two years before other offspring come along. Such
is God’s plan for the human family!
Ratner raises his voice against the small family system (one or two children at
most), where family size is deliberately restricted for the sake of possessions and advantage. He warns that the
adoption of such a norm would be a tragedy for society and for the family. From
three (Ratner) to five (Sir James Spence, one of the greatest English
physicians of this century) children appear to be the minimum family size
necessary for the optimum rearing of children.(5) Ratner is critical of
the many so-called Catholic marriage and family life programs which
“stand under indictment for neglecting to inculcate in couples the gift,
the pleasures and the value of children.” Young couples need to be reminded of
Soren Kierkegaard’s admonition: “The trouble with life is that we
understand it backwards but have to live it forwards.” There is no worse regret in life, says Ratner, than
the married woman who discovers toward the end of life that she should have had
a child or more children. (6)
of “secularized prudence” (enshrined in the
“planned-parenthood” philosophy) is to be “overly concerned
with the price to be paid not the value received,” Ratner says.
“True prudence approaches judgement-making with a trust in the
providential order and includes hope in the final decision.” He reminds
us that “The choicest gift one can bequeath to a child is not material
possessions but another brother and sister,” and “the large family
is the best prevention against loneliness which is so all-pervasive in modern
society.” (7) (Randy Engel, The McHugh Chronicles.)
It is easy to become captive to the phrases of the day. I did so as a "conservative" Catholic when viewing "natural family planning" favorably, not breaking free from this captivity until around 2000. Bishop Cahal Daly, who was consecrated a bishop in 1967 and became the conciliar "archbishop" of Armagh in 1990, dying last year, was wrote the following about the whole mentality of "family planning":
In Morals, Law and Life, the Rev. Cahal B.
Daly, M.D., D.D., takes a hard look at the “guilt-assuaging and
moral-satisfaction-suggesting stimuli” which characterizes such euphemisms
as the “planned family” or “wanted babies” or
“planned babies.” (14)
important to realize just what is being done by the use of these phrases. They
are being pervasively redefined, that is to say, the usual meaning of
the phrases is being subtly changed so that the moral and emotional approval
elicited by the words may be attached to a new form of behavior that it is
desired to recommend. (15)
these new definitions, Daly explains, only habitual contraceptors or family
planners can be called “voluntary” or “responsible”
parents, and only babies from families of habitual contraceptors or family
planners can be called “wanted” or “planned” babies.
“Conversely, babies born to non-contraceptors or non-family planners are
“unintended” pregnancies” and children born of such unions
must be considered “accidental” or “unintended” babies. Hence, in Alice-in-Wonderland fashion, “wanted
babies” are babies of couples who habitually do not want babies and use
contraceptives regularly to avoid them and who, on a carefully restricted
basis, occasionally suspend their contraception and cease to
“unwant” for an occasion or two, a child.(16)
terms as “family planning,” says Daly, betrays the child, for a
baby is not “a product” to
be planned or manufactured or disposed of when found to be
“defective,” but “a gift” from God to be loved and
welcomed for his own sake all through life. (17) (Randy Engel, The McHugh Chronicles.)
Yes, the devil is always trying to find a way to get us to fall for his linguistic traps. We must not permit ourselves to fall into these traps, praying to Our Lady always for the humility to admit our errors if we have fallen into them and to beg her to seek her Divine Son's ineffable mercy for our refusal to see the truth when it was pointed out to us very plainly by those who had nothing other than our eternal welfare in mind.
We must be calm in the storms that beset us, both ecclesiastically and civilly. The words of Our Lady to Juan Diego on Tepeyac Hill are as relevant now as they were in 1531:
Know for certain that I am the perfect and a perpetual Virgin Mary, Mother of the True God. . . . Here I will show and offer my love, my compassion, my help and my protection to the people. I am your merciful Mother, the Mother of all those who love me, of those who cry to me, of those who have confidence in me. Here I will hear their weeping and their sorrows and will remedy and alleviate their suffering, necessities and misfortunes. . . . Listen and let it penetrate into your heart. . . . Do not be troubled or weighed down with grief. So do not fear any illness or vexation, anxiety or pain. Am I not here who am your Mother? Are you not under my shadow and protection? Am I not your fountain of life? Are you not in the folds of my mantle? In the crossing of my arms? Is there anything else that you need?
As we remain claim as we enfold ourselves in the crossing of Our Lady's arms in the midst of so many snares and traps, we should also remember this injunction of Pope Pius XI, contained in Quas Primas, December 11, 1925:
We firmly hope, however, that the feast of the Kingship of Christ, which in future will be yearly observed, may hasten the return of society to our loving Savior. It would be the duty of Catholics to do all they can to bring about this happy result. Many of these, however, have neither the station in society nor the authority which should belong to those who bear the torch of truth. This state of things may perhaps be attributed to a certain slowness and timidity in good people, who are reluctant to engage in conflict or oppose but a weak resistance; thus the enemies of the Church become bolder in their attacks. But if the faithful were generally to understand that it behooves them ever to fight courageously under the banner of Christ their King, then, fired with apostolic zeal, they would strive to win over to their Lord those hearts that are bitter and estranged from him, and would valiantly defend his rights.
Moreover, the annual and universal celebration of the feast of the Kingship of Christ will draw attention to the evils which anticlericalism has brought upon society in drawing men away from Christ, and will also do much to remedy them. While nations insult the beloved name of our Redeemer by suppressing all mention of it in their conferences and parliaments, we must all the more loudly proclaim his kingly dignity and power, all the more universally affirm his rights.
Viva Cristo Rey!
Immaculate Heart of Mary, triumph soon.
Our Lady of Guadalupe, pray for us!
Saint Joseph, Patron of Departing Souls, pray for us.
Saints Peter and Paul, pray for us.
Saint John the Baptist, pray for us.
Saint John the Evangelist, pray for us.
Saint Michael the Archangel, pray for us.
Saint Gabriel the Archangel, pray for us.
Saint Raphael the Archangel, pray for us.
Saints Joachim and Anne, pray for us.
Saints Caspar, Melchior, and Balthasar, pray for us.
Saint Pantaleon, pray for us..
See also: A Litany of Saints