Extremely interesting blog post from the “American Papist”, Thomas Peters. In his blog post, Peters point out to a clearly visible, but often not sufficiently considered reality: that the overwhelmingly liberal mass media greatly increase the feeling of inevitability of homo marriage by stubbornly ignoring their many defeats, and giving enormous space and “historic significance” to their very rare victories.
Stop for a moment and reflect what the liberal media (that is: the vast majority of the mass tv channels in the US and Europe, and the majority of mass newspapers) would have said if in the US there had been thirty popular consultation about the so-called homo marriages and the perverts had won all of them. And now please think that the reality is that they have lost them, all of them. It’s 31-0 for Christian values, and counting!
If this kind of results had been achieved by the other side, the call for the end of the debate would be deafening, and every opposer treated as an undemocratic nazi.
Or let us examine the legislative part of the battle, the arena where the homos try to transform their clear minority in the country in a majority by attracting representatives of the people ready to please them in exchange for favours. Well it turns out that this year they have already lost in Maryland and Rhode Island, and only won in New York; it’ 2-1 on the legislative front then, but there are at least other six states – let us count them: Minnesota, Indiana, North Carolina, New Hampshire, Iowa and Pennsylvania preparing themselves to reinforce marriage as the only…. marriage, or to reverse past decisions favourable to the homos.
Not persuaded yet? Look at a liberal state like California, where the homos have lost several times through either popular vote or law initiatives, and are now trying to overturn the people’s decision through an homosexual judge living together with his lover (or mistress, I suppose; or both; no idea what disgusting “arrangements” these people make).
Or perhaps you think that wherever homosexual so-called “marriage” legislation is passed, the situation is irreversible? Think again! Iowa and New Hampshire are two points in case, California is another example of sort (with the victorious Proposition 8 being the people’s answer to pink judicial activism). Wherever you look, people don’t sit and say “oh well, it had to happen I suppose”, but they react.
This, mind, even before the massive Catholic machine has been mobilised. If the US bishops started to say it as it is in a way that can’t be ignored, things would change in a matter not of decades, but probably of years, and the great risk for puppets a’ la Andrew Cuomo to be wiped out would soon let them decide that it is better for them to shut up like as many children when the headmaster enters the classroom.
Thankfully, in the United States more and more people are starting to understand what your humble correspondent has been saying from pre-blog times: homosexuality is the front line of the Christian war. Re-establish a Christian attitude to this, and abortion and euthanasia will be won on the momentum created by this recovery of Christian values.
Sad as it is to say so, too many people are still numbed to the atrocity of abortion, as – as they say in Italy – “the laws of one generation are the morality of the following one”. Not so for homo “marriages”. This is a battle that every Christian can fully grasp now and the re-discovery of his Christian values in one matter will unavoidably lead to a more mature reflection on all others.
Therefore, be in good spirit and wait for 2012, when pro homo representative and senators will hopefully get a pounding (these things can be pretty brutal, look here and tell me if you’d want to be in one of the pictures) and the people will wake up to the reality that they have the right to demand a Christian country and a legislation fruit of the will of the people rather than of judicial activism, or corridor politics. When the pendulum starts to clearly swing back in the US, it will only be a question of time before the same happens in Europe. At least in Southern Europe, where the ability of the Church leaders to mobilise the masses and shape future generations would still be very high, if they did as much as to wake up.
It sometimes happens that I attend the 12:30 mass instead of the 11:00 Mass. What always strikes me on those occasions is, on entering the church, a strong smell of incense. The fact is, that the 10:00 Mass doesn’t have the massive use of incense of the solemn mass at 11:00; therefore, coming in after the end of the 11:00 mass you immediately notice the difference.
Every time that this happens I can’t avoid noticing what the Protestants (most of them, at least) miss not only from a theological point of view (because they are heretics) but from a more practical, eminently human one.
Catholicism is so complete, so wise, so beautifully constructed in all its details. The little gestures and smells and rituals that are so closely identified with Catholic tradition are a help to the faithful rather than a show of pomp or an ungodly fondness for rituals. At the same time, they connect him with his deeper nature rather than creating a separation between what he thinks and what he is.
When you get into a Catholic church, you are supposed to enter a different world. A world which in its isolation from the outside environment wants to be a prefiguration of the world to come. Walls will be as thick as affordable. Doors will isolate you from the outside as much as practicable. Once inside, you will notice the smell of incense and this will immediately – in an automatic, unconscious reflex similar to the one of Pavlov’s dogs – tell you on a more profound level than the intellectual one that you are now in a sacred place. You look for the stoop and again something happens that is unique to the church: the contact of your forehead with the cold holy water. Around you, the environment is also unique: the building is more or less ornate, generally as much as economic possibilities allow. This is different from everything you see outside and not only does remind you of Christianity at every turn and in every inch (the paintings, the painted glass, the statues, the stations of the cross, the pulpit, the sanctuary with the altar and the Tabernacle, and so on), but it literally leads you to a world you won’t find anywhere else.
It goes on. Silence – a typical trait of every church not defiled by post Vatican-II madness and postmodern ignorance and rudeness – is your almost constant companion. Even tourists go around exchanging, if at all, merely short whispers. This is very natural to them, as the silence is overwhelming and everything they see and smell around them tells them that….. they are now in another world. If the church is not immersed in its solemn silence, an organ might be playing and here again, the assault on your senses is overwhelming.
You see here how a properly made Catholic church embraces all of you at an emotional, elementary level. Sight (the decoration), smell (the incense), hearing (the music, or the silence), touch (the holy water) are involved in a unique way, a way immediately predisposing you to prayer and meditation.
This may seem unnecessary frill and unholy complication to a Protestant mind, but in reality only shows one of the typical traits of Catholic mentality: their connection with the entire being as opposed to the cold cerebral approach so typical of many Protestants. In turn, this natural desire to let all their senses participate to their devotion is – and I can say this with full, first-hand knowledge, having extensively lived in both worlds – so typical of the mediterranean culture, which without any doubt is much more in touch with their inner being than the Peoples of the colder Protestant regions. And one would be tempted to wonder whether it is their connection with their emotions that makes of southern Europeans “natural Catholics”, or whether they are so well-connected to their emotions because they have been raised, for countless generations, as Catholics. If you look at the Germans – a people who, by all their differences and cultural nuances, still are pretty much identifiable as a cultural homogeneous region – you can’t avoid noticing the differences in the most minute details (up to the way they walk, talk, move their facial muscles, laugh!) between the Catholic regions (the Rhineland and, most notably, Bavaria) and the traditionally Protestant regions in the North and East.
When I first went to Munich, I felt like in Italy. When I first went to Berlin, I felt as if half the people around me were thinking about suicide.
Tutto si tiene, Cavour used to say and as an Italian abroad you see the way everything is tied together. Catholicism talks to your senses, and involves them; it does so with the same unspoiled, unadulterated naturalness and relaxedness Northern European Peoples invariably notice in Southern European ones (and yes: Southern Europeans invariably notice the underlying stiffness, the subtle “woodenness” of their North European counterparts).
Southern Europeans do not spend time asking whether incense has a place in church. They know it has, and that there’s no reason to be cerebral about it. The mere posing of the question would seem extraordinary to them. They are like Catholicism, probably because Catholicism made them that way: naturally embracing the truth rather than letting their own little neuroses and ego-driven exercises having the best of themselves. They naturally embrace their entire being (not only their mind, but their body and feelings) and let them participate of whatever they do (ever noticed how often Southern Europeans touch each other? Try that in Mecklemburg-Vorpommern!). And they are, in general, more at peace with themselves, which is what creates that sense of naturalness foreigners seem to love so much of us Italians (and that Italians invariably never notice in themselves, until they start living among Northern Europeans).
You see, then, how authentic Catholicism helps to create more – hoping not to be offensive, but using an expression that I have often heard from foreigners – “authentic” people. People more in touch with their own nature, instead of constantly wondering what is wrong with it or even trying to change it.
Next time you smell the incense in your church, breathe it fully and let yourself immerse in the beautifully spiritual atmosphere it creates; let the surrounding walls with their tales of faith and hope embrace you with the loving embrace of Christ; let the cold impact of the holy water on your forehead remind you – on a physical level – that you are now in a very special place; let all your senses participate of your experience; leave behind you all the puritan rigidity and coldness that you have so often experienced in your Anglo-Saxon climate; accept what the wisdom of countless generations has naturally accepted as a natural way of worship – the splendour of the decoration, the sacredness of the incense, the beauty of the organ or the solemnity of the silence – and let your heart and your entire being feel that you are in a sacred place.
The Catholic enters his splendidly decorated church, and knows – without even thinking about it – that this is just right. The Protestant enters the very same church, and starts questioning why the money hasn’t been spent on social causes. The first is a whole person, the second a victim of his belaboring brain.