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Recent posts

A philosopher speaks: curve flattened; ease the lockdown.

Edward Feser
As I have said before, I think that the lockdown that was put in place in the United States two months ago was morally justifiable given the circumstances at the time. In my opinion, under current circumstances, it is no longer morally justifiable. To be sure, I am not denying that some social (physical) distancing measures are still justifiable and even necessary. I am also not denying that a more modest lockdown may still be defensible in some localities. But the draconian total lockdown that was put in place across most of the country is at this point no longer defensible, and state and local authorities who are relaxing it are right to do so.
The original rationale for the lockdown was to “flatten the curve” so that hospitals would not be overwhelmed and crucial medical equipment such as ventilators would not become scarce. Ordinary work like running a clothing store or cutting hair wa…

"Beauty and holiness were to go into the midst of squalor and depression".

Schneider@LsNews by Paul Smeaton
HT/Fr. Hunwicke
There is a touching witness from the Oxford Movement in the Anglican Church in the 19th century, about the value of the beauty of the liturgy and the zealous administration of the sacraments in the time of the dangerous and highly contagious cholera epidemic in England. The Catholic Church does not recognize these sacraments as valid, but the fact that these ministers placed such importance on pastoral care during an epidemic should be a witness to us now. In 1866 pandemic Cholera attacked Britain for the fourth and final time in an epidemic which struck with extreme ferocity in the East End of London. “The ritual innovations of (which) they were accused were entirely rooted in the desperate pastoral needs they encountered. Sisters of Mercy worked with the clergy of St. Peter’s Plymouth in the cholera epidemics of the late 1840s, and petitioned the parish priest, Fr. George Rundle P…


The bishops of Minnesota are united in our conviction that we can safely resume public Masses in accordance with both our religious duties and with accepted public health and safety standards. We can worship in a way that reflects both the love of God and the love of our neighbors (cf. Mark 12:30-31). Therefore, we are giving our parishes permission for the resumption of the public celebration of Mass on Tuesday, May 26, which will give us time to be ready for the celebration of Pentecost on May 31. Parishes will be required to follow the strict protocols we have published for sanitation and social distancing and will have to limit attendance to one-third of the seating capacity of the church. No one will be obliged to attend, as the bishops of Minnesota will continue to dispense from the obligation to attend Sunday Mass.
We are blessed to live in a nation that guarantees the free exercise of religion. This right can only be abridged for a compelling governmental …


John 15:18-19 If the world hate you, ye know that it hated me before it hated you. If ye were of the world, the world would love his own: but because ye are not of the world, but I have chosen you out of the world, therefore the world hateth you. The world hates Christians; the world hates Catholics most of all. There is little threat to the progressive (socialist? liberal?) agenda from nice Episcopalians/Anglicans or from the congenial United Church of Canada (the NDP at prayer) and its Lutheran bedfellows. Sadly, those groups have drunk the Kool-Aid of religion-lite, the same bitter cocktail being served up in too many Catholic parishes.
gut·ter /ˈɡədər/ verb past tense: guttered; past participle: guttered (of a candle or flame) flicker and burn unsteadily. "the candles had almost guttered out"
Dom Cingoranelli at Catholic Stand has written “Nonessential” Churches – What’s Next?, a concise analysis of the status quo and a rejection of complacency that asks readers to exert…

City of Ruin; City of Hope

"A problem shared is a problem halved."

The pandemic is testing people's resiliency. For many, present circumstances have overwhelmed their capacity to adapt. The tight and wearied faces of people, whether lined up to shop for groceries or wandering aimlessly, hint that a significant number of folk are finding it difficult to cope with adversity. Many faces tell a story of resignation and fear. Physical distancing and economic paralysis are, for many, a wall. That wall is part of a prison complex. There is no key to unlock its gate. Little light reaches into its cells. Solitary confinement is prescribed for all, or so it seems at times.

Acts 12:6-11
So Peter was kept in prison; but earnest prayer for him was made to God by the church. The very night when Herod was about to bring him out, Peter was sleeping between two soldiers, bound with two chains, and sentries before the door were guarding the prison; and behold, an angel of the Lord appeared, and a light shone in the…

Physical Distancing vs Social Distancing

Amy Banks, MD, at Psychology Today, has written a concise and balanced article entitled Social vs. Physical Distancing: Why It Matters. She writes:
Social distancing, as it has been presented, can feel like that. In fact, in my work with trauma survivors during this time, I have heard people describe feeling trapped and threatened again. That is not sustainable. Becoming socially isolated may keep the majority of us alive, but not well.
By naming the national strategy as physical distancing rather than social distancing and emphasizing the need for human connection, we can stay safe from the virus but also hold onto the heightened need we all have for one another right now.
Dr. Banks acknowledges what this blogger and many others have shared:
The few times I have ventured out to a grocery store or for a walk around my neighborhood, I've seen people not only keeping distant from one another but also seeming afraid. They pass each other on the street or in a store without looking …

Manners Enter Into It

'It': 1) constructive living and a healthy society; 2) an alternative to indifference and barbarism.
manners (n.) external behavior (especially polite behavior) in social intercourse, late 14c., plural of manner in a specific sense of proper behavior, commendable habits of conduct (c. 1300). Earlier it meant "moral character" (early 13c.). For all the talk of a 'new norm', there are few details about it and much myopic blathering by wannabe pundits who seem far too eager to acquire another 15 minutes of fame at the expense of clarity and reason. Let's investigate the 'new norm', shall we, as some are anticipating will characterize the post-covid19 experience.


What is the 'new norm'? Who... can say? No, not the WHO, i.e., the World Health Organization that in the early stages parroted China's dubious narrative that the Virus could not jump from animals to humans, or from humans to humans, but then joined the chorus of res…