When Shoes Say More Than Words
by Thomas A. Droleskey
No believing Catholic wishes any other human being physical harm.
True, there may be instances when a Catholic may have to participate in actions authorized by a duly constituted civil authority (such as serving in armed forces during a just war or defending one's city or state in a police department) that will injure or kill other human beings. There are times when a Catholic may have to use a level of force proportionate to and commensurate a threat to his own life or that of his family members or others in the exercise of his right of self-defense. There are times when a Catholic judge might have to sentence to death a person found guilty after due process of committing a capital offense. Even in these instances, however, a Catholic wills the good of all others, praying for the souls of those who have forfeited the inviolability that must be accorded all innocent human beings He prays that these people will be converted and that God will have mercy on their immortal souls. And a believing Catholic does not take the law into his own hands and seek to impose "penalties" upon malefactors that can be imposed only by a duly constituted civil authority.
It is nevertheless true that a believing Catholic wills the good of all others, including those who are his own enemies and those who are the enemies of the Holy Faith, as he prays for the salvation of their immortal souls, praying especially for the conversion of non-Catholics to the true Faith before they die.
Our Blessed Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ taught us that praying for our enemies is an obligation, not an option, in our interior lives:
You have heard that it hath been said, Thou shalt love thy neighbor, and hate thy enemy. But I say to you, Love your enemies: do good to them that hate you: and pray for them that persecute and calumniate you: That you may be the children of your Father who is in heaven, who maketh his sun to rise upon the good, and bad, and raineth upon the just and the unjust.
For if you love them that love you, what reward shall you have? do not even the publicans this? And if you salute your brethren only, what do you more? do not also the heathens this? Be you therefore perfect, as also your heavenly Father is perfect. (Matthew 5: 43-48.)
True love is an act of the will. God's love for us is an act of His Divine Will, which will us to save our souls as members of the true Church that He founded upon the Rock of Peter, the Pope. Our love for others must be an expression of God's Will for us and for all other men. That is, we are called to will the salvation of all others, something we can express by word in our prayers and by deed when we have occasion to do acts of kindness for those who despise us, whether for just or unjust reasons. The martyrology of the Catholic Church is replete with examples of saints who won over at least some of their executioners or torturers before they died by their meekness and by their willingness to forgive the wrongs that were being done to them as Our Blessed Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ forgave His own executioners, namely, each one of us by means of our sins. We must give to all others that which has been given to us so freely.
Adherents of false religions, especially those that deny the Sacred Divinity of Our Blessed Lord ad Saviour Jesus Christ, treat their enemies a little differently in most instances. Steeped in the ravages of Original Sin, adherents of false religions that deny the Incarnation of the Second Person of the Blessed Trinity in Our Lady's Virginal and Immaculate Womb by the power of the Third Person of the Blessed Trinity, God the Holy Ghost, consider it their duty frequently to express hatred and revulsion for others either by doing actual physical violence to them and/or by seeking to embarrass them. Mercy and forgiveness do not come naturally to those whose souls are captive to the devil by means of Original Sin.
Those of us who are citizens of the United States of America who have opposed the invasion and occupation of the country of Iraq as far back as early-2002 do not hate the man, President George Walker Bush, who gave his approval to the neoconservative plan that has turned to be a moral and economic and geopolitical nightmare from beginning to end. We pray for his conversion to the true Faith even as we have opposed his Iraq policy, which was based on a desire to effect "regime change" to benefit "America's only ally" in the Middle East, the State of Israel, which is hardly "democratic" in how those who do not adhere to the diabolical Talmud is concerned, by creating an American-style "democratic republic" that would have a "dominoes" effect on other regimes in the area, most notably the Islamic Republic of Iran.
Some of us have used very strong language to denounce the policies of Bush and Vice President Richard N. Cheney and Richard Perle and Donald Rumsfeld that were based upon the same delusional spirit of "American exceptionalism" that motivated Woodrow Wilson's decision to involve the United States of America in the moral catastrophe known as World War I. We have, however, continued to pray for the conversion of these men who sought to invade a sovereign nation under false pretenses (weapons of mass destruction) and thereupon destroyed that nation's infrastructure, made that nation's borders porous for an influx of well-trained terrorists, imposed torture on suspects arrested on various pretexts and resulted in the deaths of untold thousands upon thousands of totally innocent Iraqis, all in the name of "liberation."
Only a tiny minority of Iraq's population is Christian. Much of that tiny majority has left Iraq in the wake of the under-reported terror that has been visited upon them by various bands of Mohammedans, whose deeply felt anti-Christian sentiments were kept in check, at least for the most part, under the dictatorship of the late thug named Saddam Hussein. Although this Christian minority has offered forgiveness to their persecutors, they have nevertheless spoken out strongly against the American occupation of their country that has made possible the sort of Mohammedan violence against Christians took the life earlier this year of Chaldean rite
Archbishop Paulos Faraj Rahho of Mosul, Iraq. They are as upset with the uninvited, unjust and immoral American invasion and occupation of Iraq as their Mohammedan countrymen who have been attacking them:
DETROIT (CNS) -- A Chaldean Catholic bishop said the United States must be held accountable for the death of Chaldean Archbishop Paulos Faraj Rahho of Mosul, Iraq.
Bishop Ibrahim N. Ibrahim of the Eparchy of St. Thomas the Apostle, based in Southfield, Mich., said that particularly the administration of U.S. President George W. Bush is responsible for the terrorism and killing of Christians in Iraq. He said the administration is ignoring the problem.
"No one is defending us," he said March 13, the day the archbishop's body was recovered after kidnappers said where they had buried him. "They are killing Christians because they are Christians."
Bishop Ibrahim said the Feb. 29 kidnapping and subsequent death of the archbishop threw into question the destiny of Christians in Iraq. Three of the archbishop's companions were killed in the kidnapping.
"We know that before the invasion of the Americans in Iraq, (terrorism) was no such a thing," Bishop Ibrahim said. "Christians and Muslims were living together, exactly like brothers and sisters, and that's it. But since the invasion, everything changes."
"Somebody has to be responsible," the bishop said. "Since the Americans are occupying Iraq, they have the responsibility of the security of every Iraqi, and in the first place minorities. I am not saying the Christians only -- but they are doing nothing for them."
In a statement March 13, Bush expressed his condolences to the Chaldean community and Iraqis and deplored the archbishop's death.
"The terrorists will continue to lose in Iraq because they are savage and cruel," he said. "Their utter disregard for human life, demonstrated by this murder and by recent suicide attacks against innocent Iraqis in Baghdad and innocent pilgrims celebrating a religious holiday, is turning the Iraqi people against them.
"We will continue to work with the Iraqi government to protect and support civilians, irrespective of religious affiliation," he said.
Around the world, Catholic leaders expressed sorrow and alarm and spoke of the archbishop as a martyr.
"We find it inconceivable that internal, regional and international efforts could not have prevented this tragic fate," said Chaldean Bishop Michel Kassarji of Beirut, Lebanon.
"We hope that this new sacrifice offered by the Iraqi Christians will be the last martyr, and we hope that the murder of this bishop strikes the alarm and wakens the consciences of leaders of Iraq and the region to do their utmost to stop the waves of extremism overwhelming the region. Our aim is the free and safe presence of the Christians in Iraq, Lebanon and the Middle East," he said.
Chaldean Archbishop Djibrail Kassab of the Eparchy of St. Thomas the Apostle of Sydney, Australia, said lawlessness in Iraq, "from kidnapping, extortion, murder, to forcing the Chaldeans to flee their country" is not new. The bishop said the Chaldean Catholic Church truly "can be called a martyr church."
"This is something we can be proud of," added the bishop, who formerly served as archbishop of Basra, Iraq. "In these days when faith needs to be stronger, we are in need of strong men and saintly martyrs to refresh our faith in our hearts and renew the life of the church."
The president of the Australian Catholic Bishops' Conference, Archbishop Philip Wilson of Adelaide, said March 14: "Such senseless killing is always shocking and inflicts a deep wound on our shared humanity. Our prayers are with the people of Iraq who continue to suffer so much."
In a letter to Cardinal Emmanuel-Karim Delly of Baghdad, patriarch of the Chaldean Catholic Church, Cardinal Francis E. George of Chicago, president of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops, called the killing "callous" and said it "demonstrates the particularly harsh realities faced by Christians in Iraq and the lack of security faced by all Iraqis." Cardinal Adam J. Maida of Detroit also expressed "profound shock and sorrow" following the archbishop's death.
The news that the archbishop was killed could force Iraqi Christians underground, said Iraqi Christians in Need, a British-based charity aiding Christian Iraqis.
Suha Rassam, spokeswoman for the charity, said, "The only way for the church in the Mosul area to survive might be if it goes underground, like it did in the first and second centuries. This way, Mass and other services would be held in secret, and priests go about their duties clandestinely."
In a March 13 statement, Rassam said an underground church is not a "situation anyone would want, but the Christian population is living each day in terror of being kidnapped or murdered."
"When the church is facing persecution of this magnitude, then desperate measures might have to be taken," she said.
"Over the last eight months, attacks on Christians have been escalating," she said. "In June Father Ragheed Aziz Ganni and three deacons were murdered, two priests were kidnapped in October, and in January four churches and a convent were bombed."
John Pontifex, London-based media officer of the Catholic charity Aid to the Church in Need, which helps persecuted Christians, said that "firsthand reports given by bishops, priests and laypeople" show that "Christians are now terrified, and this sad news will simply speed up the rate of emigration, which in turn could cause Christianity to be extinguished from the country."
"The martyrdom of Archbishop Rahho will send out the clearest possible signal yet that no Christian is safe in Iraq," he said. (CNS STORY: Chaldean bishop says U.S. accountable for death of Archbishop of Mosul )
Intent on securing the "cooperation" of various Mohammedan factions in Iraq, the Bush administration has paid little attention to the plight of Iraq's Catholic minority. One can see from this report from nine months ago, however, that Iraq's Catholics have a view of the American invasion of their country quite similar to that possessed by most of their Mohammedan countrymen. Iraqi Catholics have not thrown any shoes at President George Walker Bush. However, their dismay over what American forces have done to their country mirrors that of those who are now applauding the Mohammedan shoe thrower,
Muntader al-Zaidi, whose actions have drawn great support from Mohammedans throughout Iraq:
Tawfeeq Qais, a 31-year-old barber, said: “Muntader expressed his opinion about the freedom and democracy brought to Iraq by Bush. Bush has to take responsibility for it, and this action should be considered as a kind of democracy.”
Um Mohammad, a 36-year-old housewife, said: “Long live your right hand, Muntader. This is what the American president deserves. I am calling to release Muntader al-Zaidi.”
Abu Ali, a 55-year-old laborer, said: “It is a wedding of all Iraqis. Muntader’s action is less than Bush deserves for killing, displacing and bloodletting Iraqis. I will blame the Iraqi government and American forces if anything wrong happens to Muntader.”
Mohammed Ibrahim, 51, said: “Bush deserves more than that because his soldiers have killed Iraqis. If Saddam had occupied America and killed the American people, then what would be their reaction? What we do expect Muntader to do when he watched the American forces kill Iraqis according to Bush’s order? Long life for your hand, Muntader.”
Dr. Qutaiba Rajaa, 58, said: “Although that action was not expressed in a civilized manner, it showed the feelings of Iraqis who refuse the American occupation. Muntader expressed the real Iraqi feelings.” (Reactions Across Iraq.)
Other Iraqis were embarrassed by Muntader al-Zaidi's actions (which can be seen here, In final Iraq visit, Bush ducks a pair of shoes), saying that Iraqis are more civilized than to throw a shoe, which is a symbol of great disapproval in Iraq, at a visiting dignitary. It is clear, however, that the unjust and immoral American invasion of Iraq has angered many Iraqis as they have been subjected to the destruction of their houses, the deaths of their loved ones and, in many cases, being themselves physically maimed for the rest of their lives. There is a most justified anger on the part of the Iraqis about the arrogance and moral blindness of their American "liberators" turned occupiers.
None of the predicates of the Just War Theory were met prior to the American invasion on March 20, 2003. There was no causus belli between the United States of America and Iraq, no threat of imminent attack on the territory of the United States of America. All peaceful means to resolve the matter of "weapons of mass destruction" (much of which had been sold by the administration of President Ronald Wilson Reagan to Saddam Hussein's government in 1985 when Iraq was at war with Iran; see Shaking Hands with Saddam Hussein) had not been exhausted. There were no clearly defined goals outlined by the government of United States of America, whose leaders believed that the overthrow of Hussein would "sort of" make everything else "fall into place" rather neatly. As there were no clearly defined goals as to what constituted "victory," apart from "taking out" Hussein, there was no weighing according to the principle of proportionality the foreseen evil conequences (a protracted military involvement costing the lives of thousands of Americans and Iraqis and plunging the people of the United States of American deeper and deeper into debt) against the intended "good ends" to be accomplished by the war. Bush prosecuted the war according to his theory of "preemptive war" in the hopes that his crusade in behalf of American exceptionalism would aid the Zionist State of Israel and "pacify" Iran.
There is no question that Saddam Hussein was a brutal thug who suppressed political dissent and killed adversaries. Hussein most assuredly have shot anyone who attempted to throw a shoe at him. There are lots of brutal dictators in power in the world. The oligarchs who run Communist China have killed far more people than did Saddam Hussein. They are far more brutal to their citizens as political dissent is suppressed. The Communist Chinese regime poses a far more serious threat to the security of the United States of America than Iraq under Saddam Hussein could have ever dreamt of posing. Bush and other officials in his administration "cooked the books" to make the case in 2002 for an invasion of Iraq.
Part of this fabricated evidence in support of a "preemptive war" was presented by Bush in a speech in Cincinnati, Ohio, on October 7, 2002:
We've also discovered through intelligence that Iraq has a growing fleet of manned and unmanned aerial vehicles that could be used to disperse chemical or biological weapons across broad areas. We're concerned that Iraq is exploring ways of using these UAVS for missions targeting the United States. And, of course, sophisticated delivery systems aren't required for a chemical or biological attack; all that might be required are a small container and one terrorist or Iraqi intelligence operative to deliver it. Click here to Read the President's Speech
Growing fleet? How about two of these unmanned aerial vehicles? That's right, two. Their range? About 650 miles, which means that these unmanned aerial vehicles would have to be transported by the nonexistent Iraqi navy undetected by satellite reconnaissance in order to get close enough to the United States to drop the nonexistent "weapons of mass destruction" that Saddam Hussein was alleged to have possessed or was in the "process" of developing. Absolute absurdity designed to frighten the American public and win international support for his scheme of "regime change" to aid the not-so-"democratic" State of Israel and American corporate interests that have profited handsomely from the American invasion of Iraq, the destruction of that country's infrastructure by our bombs and then the re-building of that infrastructure in such a shoddy and corrupt manner that most of the work had to be done all over again to the benefit of these corporate interests and at the expense of American taxpayers.
President George Walker Bush believes that the government of the United States of America can invade and occupy sovereign nations as military campaigns kill anyone suspected of being a terrorist (So, the President May Kill Anybody He Pleases, Right?) He is a morally obtuse monster who is oblivious to the fact that the same number of human beings as were killed during the thirty-five years or so Saddam Hussein's brutal regime in Iraq are killed each and every year in the "civilized" United States of America under cover of law by means of surgical abortion. Bush has claimed he was "powerless" to reverse the decision of the Supreme Court of the United States of America, January 22, 1973, and was even "powerless" to reverse the marketing of the human pesticide, RU-486, by the United States Food and Drug Administration all the while he bent and twisted and broke the Constitution of the United States of America in misusing executive power to justify the use of American military forces without a declaration of war in a circumstance as executive fiat replaced the rule of law. (See Selective Use of Executive Power.)
It did not take a doctorate in political science to write I did in November of 2002 about the then impending invasion of Iraq:
The principle of proportionality contained in the Just War Theory requires a very careful and prayerful prudential judgment to be made by a policy-maker prior to the advent of war. This is not a matter of infallibly received truth. This is a judgment that has got to be based on a clear-headed and most realistic assessment of the harm that will be caused by the onset of armed hostilities. The impending war with Iraq will cause far more harm than good, as I outlined in my previous section. Rather than making us more secure, we will be less secure. We will contribute to the furtherance of anti-American sentiment around the world, and will contribute to deteriorating, not improving, the situation within Iraq itself. How many truly innocent Iraqis must die to liberate their country of a man who is far less of a threat to them on a daily basis than American "freedom" is to unborn children every day in this country? (The Real Enemies Are Within, Part One and The Real Enemies are Within, Part Two. This excerpt came from part two.)
The Iraqis do indeed have every reason to want to throw shoes at President George Walker Bush, who has helped to "empower" various sects of Mohammedans, members of that "religion of peace," you understand, during the past sixty-nine months. Catholics, however, do not throw their shoes at moral monsters. We pray for their conversion to the true Faith as we denounce their crimes and oppose with vehemence their immoral, unjust and insane policies that have visited so much devastation upon innocent human beings.
The devil has had quite a field day in Iraq as thousands upon thousands of unbaptized human beings have been killed and as American exceptionalists have convinced themselves that it is the American "way" that is the means of "improving" other countries and providing "peace" in the world. That American exceptionalism under George W. Bush is about to give way to another of the devil's naturalist lies, the globalism of Barack Hussein Obama, just proves how deep in the grip of the devil American policy makers in both major political parties are as they blind themselves to the obvious truth, proved throughout the course of the past two millennia, that Catholicism is the one and only foundation of personal and social order.
The path of true peace of the Divine Redeemer, Our Blessed Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ, runs through the Sorrowful and Immaculate Heart of Mary, not through the illusory and delusional schemes of naturalists to use the armed forces of the United States of America in unjust adventures. Let me say this again in the event that I have not made this point sufficiently clear before: Catholicism is the one and only foundation of social order.
The Sorrowful and Immaculate Heart of Mary is the path to personal and social peace. Hasn't Our Lady herself told us so in her Fatima Message? Shouldn't we pray as many Rosaries each day as our states in life permit and also add the devotion of her Seven Dolors to our daily spiritual life if we have not done so already?
Father Frederick Faber alluded to this in The Foot of the Cross:
Lastly, we must say a few words of the measures and dimensions of her Compassion. We have drawn such a picture of it as we are able. It not only falls far below the truth, but it sensibly falls fall below the real image of it in our own minds. A thousand unexpressed thoughts are teasing us at this moment, but the difficulty is how to express them fitly. Words do not seem to be measures for them. They are thoughts of love; and love does not speak; it burns. Moreover, there must be limits to all things except loving. There are not limits there. Love is an eternal work. Love alone can measure the Compassion of Mary. Think of the sufferings of Jesus. They open at our feet like a huge abyss. Can we fathom their dreadful depths? Or do we not rather shrink in conscious nothingness from a task so hopeless and so rash? Yet Mary's Compassion contains that world-wide abyss, measures it, and holds its miraculously within its own dimensions. It we speak of the beauty of Jesus, straightway the vision of a shoreless sea, which no horizon bounds, over which the sun is rising and setting at the same moment, the half disk sunken in the west already rising in the east, and the waters rolling on and on for evermore. Yet as are the waters of that beauty, so were the waters of Mary's bitterness. By an opposite miracle to that of Moses, the wood of the Cross thrown into those waters of beauty has converted them into bitterness. If we think of men's cruelty in the Passion, it is a mystery nearer to our understanding; yet it is not that nearness almost an infinite distance? Are we not obliged to call to our aid the theory of diabolical possession? even then the horrors of the Passion are almost incredible, because they are so nearly inconceivable. Yet these horrors were but a part of Mary's Compassion; and truly, compared with the wrath of the Father, and the beauty of Jesus, they were the very least part of it. If we think of her deep love of Jesus, it is only to delight in its interminable magnificence. It is beyond our definitions, out of the sphere of our comprehension. We make wild comparisons of all angels and of all saints, indulge in fanciful arithmetic, repeat our superlatives, but we only do so to convince ourselves more satisfactorily that it is all beyond us, just as a man uses violence with himself to be sure he is awake. Yet the dimensions of that love do not each to the dimensions of her Compassion, because there is another love yet, to which it marvellously outstretches. It is the deep love of Jesus for her. Who can tell it? Who can speak of it even figuratively? for where is our figure to come from? Yet the breadth, and the depth, and the height of that love of Jesus for His Mother are the only true dimensions of her Compassion. Here are five abysses, five measure, five standards, His sufferings, His beauty, men's cruelty, her deep love of Him, His deep love of her. We must do our poor best with them all, and we shall reach a view of our Blessed Mother's Compassion which will be good for us and acceptable to her, but it will be below the truth. A work which Jesus sand Mary made together, out of God's wrath and man's sin, and the Hypostatic Union, and the sinlessness of a pure creature, must be a marvel about which at best we can but stammer, and lovingly go wrong; and such a work is Mary's Compassion. Our task is ended, and love will give our poor thoughts a truth of its own which will make them good for souls.
It is a beautiful and a dread sight to see all the sorrows of fallen earth resumed in the broken heart of our own Mother. Has it moved us? Then why not for the rest of life, in sober panic at the world, and worldliness, go and sit at our Mother's feet and meditate her griefs? Is there a fitter work for prodigals come back to their Heavenly Father? Compassion with her is already compassion with Jesus; and we may say that compassion with the Invisible Creator Himself is the devotional feeling out of which we shall serve Him most generously, and realize Him most tenderly as our Eternal Father,--eternal because He has been--blessed be His Majesty!--from all eternity, and eternal because we shall be--blessed be His compassion!--with Him, His happy sons, His pardoned, sons to all eternity. Truly Mary lays up evermore in the lap of God. Truly by some celestial logic of their own, all Christian things, be they doctrines or devotions, come out at last in that one compendious, melodious, alone-sufficing world, Eternal Father! (Father Frederick Faber, The Foot of the Cross, published originally in England in 1857 under the title of The Dolors of Mary, republished by TAN Books and Publishers, pp. 404-406.)
The madness of the modern civil state has produced a "democratic" fascism in the West that is but the logical result of the Protestant Revolt and the rise of Judeo-Masonry. Sanity can be restored only by the restoration of the Social Reign of Christ the King and Mary our Immaculate Queen, a work that starts with our own total consecration to Our Blessed Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ through the Sorrowful and Immaculate Heart of His Most Blessed Mother and the enthronement of our very homes to these same matchless twin Hearts of Love and Compassion. We are changing the world by the changing of souls to the true Faith, starting with our own on a daily basis as we cleave to true bishops and true priests in the catacombs where no concessions are made to conciliarism or to the nonexistent legitimacy of its false shepherds.
We must never forget these words of Pope Saint Pius X, contained n Notre Charge Apostolique, August 15, 1910:
Here we have, founded by Catholics, an inter-denominational association that is to work for the reform of civilization, an undertaking which is above all religious in character; for there is no true civilization without a moral civilization, and no true moral civilization without the true religion: it is a proven truth, a historical fact.
The true religion is Catholicism, not conciliarism, not any secular, naturalistic ideology of the "left" or of the "right." We must enfold ourselves into the love of the Sorrowful and Immaculate Heart of Mary and the Most Sacred Heart of Jesus as we make reparation for our own many sins, which are so responsible for the worsening of the state of the Church Militant on earth and of the world-at-large, as we seek to restore all things in Christ the King and Mary our Immaculate Queen by praying as many Rosaries each da as our states-in-life permit.
Isn't it time to pray a Rosary now?
Our Lady of the Rosary, pray for us!
Vivat Christus Rex! Viva Cristo Rey!
Saint Joseph, pray for us.