Monday, February 28, 2011

Notes: Saturday, February 26-Monday, February 28, 2011

1. "Study: Working moms have sicker kids"

Labels: families, health, work

2. "Russia has unveiled the biggest rearmament program since the fall of the Soviet Union"

See also:

"China determined to rival US arsenal"

Labels: P.R.C., Russia

3. Those Herald pieces on the findings from a recent survey of Australian Catholic priests

This is an excerpt from the first comment published in the comments section of a CathNews item on the matter:

We are asked to find out our polititians' views on life issues before voting for them.
It seems that we should also be finding out our parish priests' views on these issues too.


Labels: Priesthood

4. "[N.S.W. Liberal-National] Coalition guarantees [Gay] Mardi Gras future"

It seems that Mr. O'Farrell has changed his tune from what he had to say at the time when, in October 2008, direct State funding for the Sodomites' Parade was publicly confirmed by Events NSW (direct and indirect Sydney City Council funding had been going on for the previous ten years, in the order of hundreds of thousands of dollars a year as of February 2009):

PREMIER Nathan Rees' decision to help fund Sydney's Gay and Lesbian Mardis Gras with taxpayer dollars shows he has his priorities wrong, Opposition Leader Barry O'Farrell claimed today.

"He's confusing the hell out of people across the state,'' Mr O'Farrell said.

"If Mr Rees wants to prioritise funding, some of the announcements he's made in recent days would be further down the list for most people of this city and this state, behind infrastructure and services.''
[bold type in the original,]

Labels: G.L.B.T., Gay and Lesbian Mardi Gras, N.S.W.

5. Mr. Sheehan on, among other things, the Medically Supervised Injecting Centre

Labels: vice

Reginaldvs Cantvar

Friday, February 25, 2011

Notes: Thursday, February 24-Friday, February 25, 2011

1. Prof. Putnam's findings on the consequences of increased diversity in society

Here is an excerpt from a comment at The Australian's website:

Geoff of Sydney Posted at 10:55 AM February 23, 2011

When has Malcolm Fraser got anything right? "Multiculturalism is about diversity, not division -- it is about interaction not isolation." Yet Robert Putnam's extensive study on "diversity" policy has shown (against his personal beliefs) that it does foster disharmony and isolation within a society. ...


You can read more about those findings at Wikipedia:

Labels: multiculturalism, Robert Putnam, social trends

2. Latest developments in Australia and the U.S. regarding so-called gay marriage

2.1 "Marriage law loses Obama support"

Labels: Barack Obama, G.L.B.T., marriage, morality, U.S.A.

2.2 "LABOR must win back voters lost to the Greens by advocating stronger action on climate change and supporting gay marriage, according to a secret internal review of the party's performance"

Labels: Australian Labor, G.L.B.T., marriage, morality

3. "The Alta Vendita [and how it has succeeded just as it had planned]"

Labels: Freemasons, Vatican II

4. ""Womanpriest" renounces supposed ordination"

Labels: Norma Jean Coon, womenpriests

Reginaldvs Cantvar

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Notes: Tuesday, February 22-Wednesday, February 23, 2011

In one of the interview web-pages, there is a hyperlink to an English translation of the Twenty-Four Thomistic Theses, which theses the Sacred Congregation of Studies approved in the early twentieth century:

Labels: Benedict XVI. Ratzinger, Bernard Fellay, philosophy, S.S.P.X., St. Thomas Aquinas, theology, Traditional Latin Mass, Vatican II

2. R.I.P. Dr. Bernard Nathanson, the former abortionist and National Abortion Rights Action League co-founder who became pro-life and, later, Catholic

Labels: abortion, Bernard Nathanson

3. Interesting AQ thread on the motive for the Incarnation

Labels: theology

4. Excerpt from a blog comment on the relationship between abortion and contraception:

... A recent study of around 2000 women found that 1 in 2 had an unplanned pregnancy and 60% of those were using contraception at the time. More than half of women who have abortions report they were using contraception at the time. Also if you multiply 99% by the number of women on the pill you will come out with a number of failures that is completely unacceptable if you intend to kill ‘failures’.

Labels: abortion, contraception

5. What's this all about?

I don't remember seeing anything like this in, if I recall correctly, almost four years of reading the Vatican Information Service daily e-mail bulletin:


VATICAN CITY, 21 FEB 2011 (VIS) - In the Consistory Hall of the Vatican Apostolic Palace at midday today, the Holy Father presided at an ordinary public consistory for the canonisation of the following blesseds:

[...] A number of cardinals then expressed to the Pope their desire to pass from the order of deacons to the order of priests:

- At the request of Cardinal Agostino Cacciavillan, the diaconate of the Holy Guardian Angels at Citta Giardino has been elevated "pro hac vice" to presbyteral title and assigned to the same cardinal.

- At the request of Cardinal Sergio Sebastiani, the diaconate of St. Eustace has been elevated "pro hac vice" to presbyteral title and assigned to the same cardinal.

- At the request of Cardinal Zenon Grocholewski, the diaconate of St. Nicholas in Carcere has been elevated "pro hac vice" to presbyteral title and assigned to the same cardinal.

- At the request of Cardinal Jorge Maria Mejia, the diaconate of St. Jerome of Charity has been elevated "pro hac vice" to presbyteral title and assigned to the same cardinal.

- At the request of Cardinal Walter Kasper, the diaconate of All Saints on the New Appian Way has been elevated "pro hac vice" to presbyteral title and assigned to the same cardinal.

- At the request of Cardinal Roberto Tucci S.J., the diaconate of St. Ignatius of Loyola at Campo Marzio has been elevated "pro hac vice" to presbyteral title and assigned to the same cardinal. [...]
OCL/ VIS 20110221 (390)

And the question in the title of this Notes item is not rhetorical.

Labels: College of Cardinals

Reginaldvs Cantvar
Feast of St. Peter Damian, Bishop, Confessor, Doctor of the Church, A.D. 2011

Monday, February 21, 2011

Notes: Saturday, February 19-Monday, February 21, 2011

1. "Study finds merit in distractions"

Labels: psychology


Full text of a Vatican Information Service daily e-mail bulletin item from the other day:


VATICAN CITY, 17 FEB 2011 (VIS) - The Holy See Press Office released the following communique at midday today:

"Today, 17 February 2011, the Holy Father Benedict XVI received in audience Dimitry Medvedev, president of the Russian Federation. Subsequently the president, accompanied by Sergei Lavrov, minister for foreign affairs, went on to meet with Cardinal Secretary of State Tarcisio Bertone S.D.B. who was accompanied by Archbishop Dominique Mamberti, secretary for Relations with States.

"In the course of the cordial discussions, the parties expressed their pleasure at the good state of bilateral relations and highlighted their desire to strengthen them, also in the wake of the establishment of full diplomatic relations. The broad-ranging collaboration between the Holy See and the Russian Federation was recognised, both in the promotion of specifically human and Christian values, and in the cultural and social field. Subsequently, emphasis was given to the positive contribution inter-religious dialogue can make to society. Finally, attention turned to the international situation, with particular reference to the Middle East".
OP/ VIS 20110217 (180)

Labels: Russia

3. Latest Australian developments regarding so-called gay marriage

3.1 "Labor ministers find backing for same-sex marriage"

Labels: G.L.B.T., marriage, morality

3.2 "Tony Abbott won't change gay marriage stance"

Labels: G.L.B.T., marriage, morality

3.3 Mr. Hunter on 'gay marriage'

Labels: G.L.B.T., marriage, morality

4. Mr. Furedi on, among other things, past and present explanations for homosexuality

Labels: biology, G.L.B.T.

5. Information on Fr. Crothers's curriculum vitæ

Here is my transcription of the third item from the "parish pump" section of the Sydney Catholic Weekly of two Sundays ago on page three:

Parish cheerio this week to Fr John Crothers and Fr Van Vuong Nguyen, parish priest and assistant priest respectively of St Declan's, Penshurst, and Our Lady of Fatima, Peakhurst, and their flock. Fr John has just celebrated his 10th anniversary at the parish, having moved there in late 2000. He has also served as Diocesan Justice and Peace Promoter and parish priest of Enmore/Tempe.

Fr. Crothers is in the news again, as it happens.

Labels: John Crothers

6. Cardinal Pell on, among other things, the Neo-Catechumenal Way's Comment

Labels: George Pell, Neo-catechumenal Way

7. Interesting article on the religious situation in The Ukraine

Labels: R.O.C., Russia, Ukraine

8. "Scottish Humanist weddings more popular than Catholic ones"

Labels: humanism, marriage, Scotland

Reginaldvs Cantvar

Friday, February 18, 2011

Notes: Tuesday, February 15-Friday, February 18, 2011

1. Ms Keneally and Mr. O'Farrell speak at Australian-Christian-Lobby-organised forum

Given that The Greens are, as far as I know, the only group with Parliamentary representation which (group) advocates discriminalising abortion (outside Parliament we have, of course, "Pro Choice NSW", a lobby group formed precisely in order to remove abortion from the Crimes Act), it came as no suprise to me that neither Labor nor the Coalition intend to do so, so the point of greater interest to me from those two articles is that nor, apparently, do they intend to collect and publish data on abortions like South Australia does.

Labels: abortion, N.S.W., South Australia

2. Information on who will be involved in H.R.H. Prince William of Wales's wedding ceremony

Labels: William Wales

3. An interesting blog which I've discovered (via Cath Pews):

Labels: blogs

4. Anglican slap in the face for their Catholic 'dialogue' partners: Pretender Archbishop of Canterbury appoints ladybishop to be one of the ten Anglican representatives to the Anglican-Roman Catholic International Commission
(discovered at

Labels: Anglicans, ecumenism, womenpriests

5. "Huge drop in Zimbabwe HIV rate fuelled by rise in abstinence, fidelity"

Labels: contraception, H.I.V./A.I.D.S., vice

6. "Archbp. Marchetto’s book about “School of Bologna” and interpretations of Vatican II now in English"

Labels: Agostino Marchetto, Vatican II

7. Interesting article on recent High Court judgements (and "the closest that Australia comes to having a constitutional Bill of Rights")

Labels: High Court of Australia, law

Reginaldvs Cantvar
Feast of St. Simeon, Bishop, Martyr, A.D. 2011

Monday, February 14, 2011

Notes: Saturday, February 12-Monday, February 14, 2011

1. More from Ms Horin on so-called gay marriage

Labels: Adele Horin, G.L.B.T., marriage, morality

2. Dr. Cook on Prof. Singer's views on incest

Labels: morality, Peter Singer

3. Two recent blog posts by Mr. Muehlenberg:

3.1 On Ms Hartland's views on the death penalty and abortion

With a good comment there by Dr. Kok:

If execution is state sanctioned murder, then imprisonment is state sanctioned kidnapping; fines are state sanctioned theft; impoundment of an illegally parked vehicle is state sanctioned grand theft auto!

Labels: abortion, Colleen Hartland, death penalty, morality

3.2 On Dr. Savulescu's views on eugenics

Labels: eugenics, Julian Savulescu, morality

4. Mr. Marr on moves against discrimination by religious organisations against certain classes of sinner

Labels: David Marr, discrimination, G.L.B.T., morality

Reginaldvs Cantvar
Feast of St. Valentine, Priest, Martyr, A.D. 2011

Friday, February 11, 2011

Notes: Thursday, February 10-Friday, February 11, 2011

1. More on so-called gay marriage

1.1 "[Julie] Bishop breaks ranks on same-sex marriage"

Labels: G.L.B.T., Julie Bishop, marriage, morality

1.2 "Minister Tanya Plibersek to support gay marriage"

Labels: G.L.B.T., marriage, morality, Tanya Plibersek

2. "German bishops respond to statement by dissenting theologians"

Labels: theology, womenpriests

3. H.M. The Queen has appointed H.R.H. Prince William of Wales as Colonel of the Irish Guards (Her Majesty remains Colonel-in-Chief)

Labels: William Wales

4. Mr. Ferrara on 'full communion'

Labels: theology

Reginaldvs Cantvar
Feast of the Apparition of Our Lady at Lourdes, A.D. 2011

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Notes: Wednesday, February 9, 2011

1. More on so-called gay marriage

1.1 "[Malcolm] Turnbull seeks views on gay marriage"

Labels: G.L.B.T., Malcolm Turnbull, marriage, morality

1.2 "Union revolt on same-sex marriage ban"

Labels: G.L.B.T., marriage, morality, S.D.A.

2. "[Russian Orthodox] Archbishop Hilarion on Christian Unity"

I was interested to read there that the prelate in question

believe[s that] we the Orthodox are ourselves not altogether clear about what we mean by primacy and how this primacy should be exercised. We have, for example, certain differences between the primacy as it is understood by the Patriarchate of Constantinople and the primacy as it is understood by the Patriarchate of Moscow.

See also the first comment in that AQ thread for information on relations between the Russian State and the Russian Orthodox Church.

Labels: Hilarion Alfeyev, Kirill of Moscow, Papacy, R.O.C., Russia

3. Dr. Oddie on Catholic-Anglican 'ecumenical' discussions


... A document so general that they can all subscribe to it will somehow be cobbled together. Nobody will read it: and the whole operation will at great expense achieve nothing.

Can anybody explain to me why we carry on with ARCIC? Is there any real intention, as 30 years ago there undoubtedly was, of actually acheiving something? Is it a continuing self-delusion on the part of those participating? Or is ARCIC III just a PR exercise, designed to avert attention from the fact that we have now, inevitably but finally, come to the bitter end of the ecumenical road?

Labels: Anglicans, ecumenism

4. "St. Thomas Aquinas on Admonishing Prelates"

Labels: Hierarchy, morality, St. Thomas Aquinas, theology

5. (For laughs) And what about their Gender Studies credentials?

I was amused to read the following question, submitted, apparently seriously, in the comments section at the CathNews post entitled "New missal translation 'archaic': Irish priests' group"

Is there any evidence that anyone on the final committee of the new translation had/has any qualification in anthropology or the sociology of language?

Posted By: Anne , Redlands

[bold type in the original,]

Labels: humour, New Mass

Reginaldvs Cantvar
Feast of St. Cyril of Alexandria, Bishop, Confessor, Doctor of the Church, and of St. Apollonia, Virgin, Martyr, A.D. 2011

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Notes: Saturday, February 5-Tuesday, February 8, 2011

1. Recent developments regarding so-called gay marriage

1.1 Mr. Pearson on an attempt by the Sodomites' League to silence opposition to 'gay marriage'


In December [Graham Young, "the founding editor of a well-regarded e-journal called On Line Opinion"] published a piece arguing the case against gay marriage by the pro-family campaigner, Bill Muehlenberg, and then a series of spirited exchanges on the merits of the argument. It was not the first article he'd run on the subject ; that honour had gone to Rodney Croome, a gay activist. Nor were most of the essays run opposed to gay marriage.

Young commented on the blog in mid-December. "The On Line Opinion approach is one that many find difficult to accept, and we are currently under attack from a number of gay activists because we dared to publish [Muehlenberg's essay] which is mostly a pastiche of comments by gay activists, even though the majority of articles I can find on the site support gay marriage. And by attack I mean attempting to intimidate me, sponsors or advertisers. How ironic . . . when we are sponsoring the Human Rights Awards."

[...] On account of the Muehlenberg piece, Young told me two major advertisers had just pulled out: the ANZ Bank and IBM. Comparing this year's January gross ad sales with last year's, he calculated that revenue from his main category of advertising had fallen by 96 per cent. Young is worried that these bizarre decisions will adversely affect other websites as well as his own and could even lead to some of them closing down.

Courts might construe that as the result of an indiscriminate secondary boycott, in contravention of the Trade Practices Act.

That's because Young and a group of other political sites have formed a network called The Domain, to bundle up their readers as a more attractive package for advertisers. The sites are very diverse in terms of ideology, from the ultra-leftist John Passant, to the more mainstream centre-Left Larvatus Prodeo, Club Troppo, Andrew Bartlett, skepticlawyer and the likes of Henry Thornton and Jennifer Marohasy.

[...] So I approached the public relations people at IBM and the ANZ Bank, to find out whether the decision to punish an article against gay marriage by withdrawing their ads was corporate policy.

[...] The initial responses from the PR people in both corporations was that it was news to them and they'd get back to me before my deadline. The ANZ's Stephen Ries replied first. "ANZ does not advertise on any opinion-type websites that may cause offence or segregate any individuals or group. In this instance our advertising was placed through an automatic advertising placement service and once we were alerted to the content we removed our advertising.

"The removal of our advertising should not be viewed as a violation of free speech; it's simply that we choose not to advertise on blogs that do not align to our organisational values."

Oh, brave new world! Apparently anything less than uncritical endorsement of gay marriage no longer aligns with the ANZ's organisational values. What's more, the loss of ad revenue to all the blogs in the Domain network, irrespective of each site's stance on the issue, is neither here nor there and has nothing to do with their freedom of speech.

It's also worth noting that despite the blanket assurances of not advertising on opinion websites, the ANZ was advertising on New Matilda on Friday.

IBM's Matt Mollett's reply was more gnomic. "To optimise reach with its target audiences, IBM continuously reviews and refines its advertising strategy based on a range of considerations, including demographics and content."

Young suspects that the peg on which to hang the internal decision to withdraw advertising within both organisations was a code developed by IASH, the Internet Advertising Sales Houses, which he declined to sign.

The code is a triumph of political correctness gone mad, and badly needs rewriting. Schedule C provides that IASH Australia members "are forbidden to place advertising on sites containing barred content - in other words, any of the inventory defined below - in any circumstances. Content articulating views intended or reasonably likely to cause or incite hatred of any race, religion, creed, class or ethnic group. Content articulating views calculated to cause offence to or incite hatred of any individual or group."

The last sentence is the loopiest in the schedule. It forbids anything that might offend anyone. This would neuter not just contentious articles but the free flow of comment on them that gives blogs their character. As Young says, this section threatens any Australian discussion site. "No newspaper could sign up to this and have discussion threads that were anything other than anodyne."

Labels: A.N.Z., G.L.B.T., I.B.M., marriage, morality


1.1.1 Letters to The Australian on the matter:

Labels: A.N.Z., G.L.B.T., I.B.M., marriage, morality

1.1.2 Mr. Muehlenberg on the matter:

There Mr. Muehlenberg provides a link to the On Line Opinion piece in question, and in a comment of 7.2.11 / 2pm at that blog post one Gregory Storer, who is, according to Mr. Muehlenberg, "a homosexual activist; [a former] candidate for the Secular Party of Australia in 2010, and still belong to it; and ... the one who launched the complaint against Online Opinion", writes that

people will go to the advertisers when they aren’t happy with something that the advertiser is supporting, that is our right, and that’s what I did. ANZ and IBM have diversity policies, I drew there attention to them advertising on sites counter to their policies. [...] And of course, I’m not the only person to have complained about this – so can’t take full responsibility)

I think that this episode is a reminder to employees of companies with these 'diversity policies' that they should be very discrete about voicing any opposition to the Sodomites' League and its works.

Labels: A.N.Z., G.L.B.T., Gregory Storer, I.B.M., marriage, morality

1.2 The Australian Christian Lobby and, separately, a Tasmanian Liberal Senator launch petitions against 'gay marriage'

Labels: A.C.L., G.L.B.T., Guy Barnett, marriage, morality

1.3 "ACL takes campaign for marriage to the NT"

Labels: A.C.L., G.L.B.T., marriage, morality

1.4 "French High Court affirms Traditional Marriage"

Labels: France, G.L.B.T., marriage, morality

1.5 Sodomite's League to run pro-'gay-marriage' ad campaign for St. Valentine's Day/Mardi Gras; "At the United Nations Human Rights Council in Geneva last week, Norway recommended that Australia should amend the federal Marriage Act to recognise same-sex marriage"

Labels: G.L.B.T., marriage, morality, Norway

2. "New bible translation to remove the word "holocaust" from the Old Testament"

Labels: Scripture, theology

3. "One third of the Catholic theology professors in Germany, Austria, and Switzerland have signed a declaration calling for women’s ordination"

Labels: theology, womenpriests

4. "New insights on manipulation of 1960s papal commission on birth control"

Labels: contraception, Magisterium, morality

5. "Young Australians paid to have STD test"

Labels: health, vice

6. Interesting books reviewed/mentioned recently

6.1 "King Alfred the Great"

Labels: Alfred the Great

6.2 "God and Sex: What the Bible Really Says"

Labels: morality, Scripture, theology

Reginaldvs Cantvar
Feast of St. John of Matha, Confessor, A.D. 2011

Friday, February 4, 2011

Msgr. Tissier and Prof. Kozinski, separately, on the Social Reign of Christ

1. Prof. Kozinki on the social reign of Christ the King, the Confessional State, Church-State relations, liberalism, and Maritainism

Assistant Professor Thaddeus Kozinski's answers in that interview are, though not perfect, perhaps the second-most heartening thing which I've ever found on the Internet (second to my discovery of the sources for the Syllabus of Errors). See my comment in that AQ thread for a quote box of highlights from the interview. I find the answers so heartening because it is the only time I have ever seen a non-S.S.P.X.-affiliated person so vigorously assert the Social Kingship of Christ and its implications for relations between the State and Christ the King and between the State and the Church. I hope to obtain Prof. Kozinski's book, which was the occasion for that interview, before long.

2. Msgr. Tissier's summary of the doctrine pertaining to the Social Kingship of Christ

I thought that as long as I was posting a stand-alone post on the Social Reign of Christ I should finally get round to linking to that article by The Rt. Rev. Bernard Tissier de Mallerais F.S.S.P.X. It is the best treatise on the Social Kingship of Christ which I have ever seen.

Reginaldvs Cantvar
Feast of St. Andrew Corsini, Bishop, Confessor, A.D. 2011

Notes: Tuesday, February 1-Friday, February 4, 2011

1. On Egypt and developments there considered with respect to the State of Israel

From the Herald the other day:

Writing in the Israeli daily Haaretz, military analyst Amos Harel says: "The collapse of the old regime in Cairo, if it takes place, will have a massive effect, mainly negative, on Israel's position in the region. In the long run it could put the peace treaties … in danger, the largest strategic assets [Israel has] after the support of the US."

Explaining what is at stake, a senior Israeli official is quoted in The New York Times: "For the US, Egypt is the keystone of its Middle East policy. For Israel, [Egypt] is the whole arch."

The former Israeli ambassador to Egypt, Eli Shaked, writes: "The only people in Egypt who are committed to peace are the people in Mubarak's inner circle, and if the next president is not one of them, we are going to be in trouble."

[...] Ron Lesham warned in Haaretz of the consequences of Egyptian politics operating without Mubarak: "The parties will be myriad and fragmented, colourless and disappointing, left-wing and right-wing - and all of them hostile to Israel. An unstable, rudderless transition period, a parliamentary democracy in the Turkish model, if not the Iranian, will give rise to a religious regime that within a few years will presumably be in control of the best-trained and best-equipped army in the Middle East."

[my square-bracketed ellipsis, italics and other square-bracketed interpolations in the original,]

Labels: Egypt, State of Israel

2. "Obama signs Russia arms pact"


US officials said Mr Obama would make the ceremonial gesture in the Oval Office, before the milestone pact comes into force on Saturday at a ceremony in Munich attended by both nations' top diplomats.

Russian President Dmitry Medvedev signed the new START agreement's ratification last Friday after the Russian parliament passed the pact, which was endorsed by the US Senate last month.

The treaty comes into force when the two nations exchange their respective "instruments of ratification".


Labels: Russia, U.S.A.

3. On exaggerated reporting of the Australian Christian Lobby's (A.C.L.'s) reaction to the N.S.W. Coalition's plan no longer to abolish ethics classes

When the critical thinker reads a headline about "Christians vent[ing their] anger" above a first line beginning with the words "FURIOUS Christians", he or she thinks "Those are pretty strong words. Are they warranted?" Now can anyone read that article and tell me how one could answer that question in the affirmative?

Labels: A.C.L., S.M.H.

4. Mr. Ackland on the High Court's dealings with Church-State relations

The excerpts which are of interest to me:
The constitution says that the Commonwealth cannot make a law for establishing a religion, or for imposing religious observance or prohibiting the free exercise of religion. Importantly, ''no religious test shall be required as qualification for any office or public trust under the Commonwealth''.

In 1981, in a case brought by the Defence of Government Schools people, a majority of the Barwick court said state aid was perfectly kosher and did not violate the constitution. Only Justice Lionel Murphy accepted an argument that decisions of the US Supreme Court which prohibited direct government support for religious institutions should be followed here.

The majority did not take a particularly broad view of our constitutional provision, confining the restraint to laws that sought to ''establish'' a religion in Australia. As long as the government did not officially identify itself with one religion or another, then all would be well.

[...] Ron Williams says his children have been subjected to religious zealotry by chaplains employed through the Scripture Union. He has persuaded the Sydney solicitor Claude Bilinsky and barrister Bret Walker to challenge the program on constitutional grounds in the High Court. The case will be heard in May, not as an appeal but as part of the court's original jurisdiction.

[...] Then there is the crunch constitutional point. Any school chaplain engaged under this scheme holds an office under the Commonwealth. By requiring these chaplains to comply with certain guidelines, a ''religious test'' as a qualification for a government job is imposed. This, it is argued, breaches the constitution.

Labels: Church and State, Constitution, High Court of Australia, law

5. Someone who does not oppose assisted suicide on the notion of 'dying with dignity'

An interesting letter in today's Herald:
Throwing in the towel is not dignity

John Newton and Bryan Milner (Letters, February 3) are taking liberties with the English language. Dying with dignity? I don't think so.

Euthanasia legislation parading as dying with dignity is a misnomer and insults those with true dignity. It is silly for a society to make suicide, or even assisting suicide, a crime, but it is hardly a dignified exit to life. When we accord ''dignity'' to those who throw in the towel and say that those who fight to the end ''lack dignity'', we have lost the concept of dignity.

Dignity refers to the human spirit, to qualities worthy of esteem or respect. It has nothing to do with whether someone needs help to eat or go to the bathroom. By all means let people exit how they want but please don't say it was dignified. There is nothing intrinsically wrong with throwing in the towel but that is what it is.

When you feel the need to wrap your actions in inappropriate words to make them palatable, you probably don't truly believe you are doing the most honourable thing.

Mary Ancich Birchgrove

Labels: euthanasia

6. A couple of interesting websites which I've discovered

Via the Blogger profile of a commenter at Fr. Zuhlsdorf's blog I've discovered that the philosopher Edward Feser has a blog:

The first post which I saw at Dr. Feser's blog linked to an article entitled "The Metaphysical Foundations of Natural Law":

Natural-law ethics's three metaphysical presumptions are the existence of God, the immortality of the soul, and psychological liberty. I have not read Dr. Oderberg's paper yet but I would be quite interested to do so, if I have time.

Labels: morality, natural law, philosophy

7. "A Review [by Mr. Muehlenberg] of Unplanned. By [former "Planned Parenthood" clinic director] Abby Johnson."

Labels: Abby Johnson, abortion

Reginaldvs Cantvar
Feast of St. Andrew Corsini, Bishop, Confessor, A.D. 2011