Tony Abbott lecture on Freedom of Speech

Tony Abbott will give the Fr Gregory Jordan, SJ, Memorial Scholarship Lecture in Brisbane on 29 April 2016. The title of the lecture is: FREEDOM OF SPEECH: THE RIGHT AND THE RESPONSIBILITY. Details of the time and place can be found Here.

Fr Gregory Jordan was a much loved and respected theologian and former headmaster of St Ignatius Riverview. Both Tony Abbott and Barnaby Joyce were at St Ignatius during his headmastership. They attended his funeral in July 2015.

A favourite accusation of Abbott’s army of unappeasable enemies in politics and the media is that he is a religious zealot, eager to force the Australian population to convert – or else. It is one of the most serviceable parts of the Abbott persona they have created, and they keep hammering it.

Those familiar with his background, however, know that Abbott is considered by many orthodox Catholics to be on the liberal side, far from the dogmatic finger-wagging zealot of the manufactured image. Indeed, he fits the image of the modern Jesuit. In his book Battlelines, he gave a short account of his main (religious) influences.

Apart from my parents, the church was the biggest influence on my early life. From 1966 till 1975, I was at St Aloysius and then St Ignatius College, Riverview, in Sydney. The college mottos, ‘born for higher things’ and (roughly translated) ‘do as much as you can’, give a good idea of the Jesuit ethos at that time, which I thoroughly assimilated…

The Jesuits who taught me wanted to bring out the very best in their students but didn’t expect them to be saints. They weren’t dis­loyal to the Pope or subversive of the church but often seemed impa­tient with the ‘scold’ side to religious teaching. ‘Don’t bother giving up chocolates for Lent’, Father Emmet Costello used to advise, ‘but do something positive like going to Mass more often’. ‘We are all the prod­ucts of those who have loved us or failed to love us’, he often observed, quoting, I think, the American Jesuit John Powell. For me, the mes­sage was that God preferred big-hearted people who might sometimes make mistakes rather than robotic rule worshippers.

Tony Abbott’s actions as a politician bear that out. There are numerous ordinary people who give accounts of his generosity and compassion – a sympathetic word, a phone call about a sickness or death. Then there are the public demonstrations – his working with the SES, his yearly stay with the Aboriginal communities in the north, the pollie pedal, and so on. He shows his faith in his works rather than in his words.

The organizers of the Fr Gregory Jordan, SJ, Memorial Lecture have chosen well.

 

Sexual harassment ? It depends on who is doing the harassment

Madonna concert

Madonna, that vulgar little pop star and tireless promoter of the western world’s state-approved bigotry, is touring Australia at the moment. She shows respect for her shameless fans by turning up late for just about every performance, on one occasion three hours late. This insulting and unprofessional behaviour seems not to bother most of them. They are evidently ready to forgive or overlook the crassest of behaviours.

At Thursday night’s Brisbane concert, Madonna invited a 17-year-old fan onto the stage. During the chat, Madonna without warning pulled down the 17-year-old’s top to expose a breast to the stadium full of roaring fans. She laughingly quipped:

“She’s the kind of girl you want to slap on the ass … oh shit, sorry!  Sexual harassment. You can do the same to me if you like.”

The 17-year-old did not take up the offer and later remarked in response to the suggestion that Madonna had humiliated her:

“Only I get to decide if I’m humiliated or not. Why would people assume I am humiliated by my own breast, nipple or body? It’s hilarious to me how much of a big deal it is to everyone.”

To the suggestion she could sue Madonna, she laughingly scoffed:

“Seriously, why would I sue Madonna for the best moment of my life?”

We all know, of course, that had it not been the grotesquely vulgar Madonna that had pulled down her top to expose a breast but another sort of person, it could have been the worst moment of her life. In that case, the public furore would scarcely be contained, and the moralising journalists of the Age would be crowding the front benches of the kangaroo court to ensure the destruction of the pitiless offender.

As it was, the Age, a foremost leader in the great revival of anti-Catholic sectarianism, only mentioned in passing that Madonna’s performance ‘caused a ruckus with religious groups.’ Groups? There’s only one ‘group’ that that vulgar bigot targets – to the delight of the Age scribblers.

Confronting the Marxist campaign of subversion

The introduction of the $8 million Government-sponsored program Safe Schools’ that endorses students cross-dressing and other radical sexual concepts shows just how far the Marxist campaign to totally subvert Australian society has come. Let’s not be under any illusion. Whether you want call it Marxist-Leninist, Cultural Marxism, Critical Theory, the Frankfurt School, Political Correctness, Marxist theory is the foundation of the campaign to turn traditional Australian society on its head. The Safe Schools program is a massive open assault in the campaign and targets society’s most tender and vulnerable: children. The Andrews Government in Victoria, rushing at the head of the program of subversion, has won for itself the title as Australia’s first Marxist government, a government propped up by the iron fist of Marxist unionists. If one listens to the Andrews rhetoric one can hear echoes of Mexico in the 1920s and Spain 1930s when the Marxists began murdering Catholic clergy, the first target of all Marxist campaigns. When one observes one institution after another caving in (the feminizing and homosexualizing of the Liberal Party is well advanced under Malcolm Turnbull and his treacherous acolytes), one must think it would take a foolishly brave cleric to ride out onto a battlefield littered with the fallen amid the white flags of surrender. Yet there is such an unwise cleric. Below is a letter addressed to the members of a Catholic parish in Melbourne. Its author had no intention of addressing a public audience. But his fierce uncompromising stand and utter disregard of the consequences of standing up to forces that want to crush him without mercy make it an example for all those hanging back. It is reproduced here with the permission of the author. Continue reading

The invincible ignorance of some journalists concerning George Pell

 

Nobody should miss Gerard Henderson’s Media Watch Dog each Friday. An ongoing feature of Media Watch Dog is Gerard’s highlighting of the ABC’s anti-Catholic sectarianism. This favourite expression of the ABC’s poisonous prejudice against anything with the slightest whiff of conservatism is most manifest in their obsession with Cardinal George Pell who for the ABC is the religious equivalent of Tony Abbott. The ABC can take pride in its being at the head of the current revival of anti-Catholic sectarianism, a disease that came to Australia on the First Fleet and was ably promoted by the likes of the flogging parson Samuel Marsden and Presbyterian minister John Dunmore Lang. This is one Tradition the ABC has loyally kept up. The following is Gerard’s most recent exposition of the ABC’s primitive anti-religious bigotry.

BISHOP GEOFFREY ROBINSON FAILS TO FULFILL THE ABC’S PROPHECIES

The ABC was quite excited on the morning of retired Bishop Geoffrey Robinson’s appearance before the Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse – Tuesday 25 August 2015.

Fr Robinson is a long-time critic of Cardinal George Pell – both before and after Pell became the Catholic Archbishop of Sydney. Some ABC producersdecided to preview Geoffrey Robinson’s appearance before the Royal Commission – focusing on what the retired bishop might say about Cardinal Pell.

On Radio National Breakfast, Fran (“I’m an activist”) Kelly interviewed Francis Sullivan from the Truth, Justice and Healing Council.  Mr Sullivan is a public critic of George Pell.  Needless to say, it was not long before the Cardinal was introduced into the discussion.  Let’s go to the transcript: Continue reading

Ireland – a famous political victory and a devastating cultural defeat

By voting in a landslide to change the definition of marriage, Ireland has shown on the great feast of Pentecost that it has flipped over into its pagan past. The cultural signs and symbols might still be there, but it’s superficial. Ireland can no longer be considered a Catholic nation. Indeed, it would be struggling to call itself Christian.

The most important part of Irish culture, its Catholic religion, has been spurned. The religion the Irish desperately clung to for centuries under a heartless persecution that reduced two-thirds of the Irish population to a little more than miserable degraded serfs in their own country has been spurned. Continue reading

Thomas More – fictionalising history for political purposes

Deconstructing History

‘[Hilary] Mantel has chosen to make [St Thomas] More the singular object of her anti-Catholic vitriol. More does not appear in the book other than in a damning light; no one speaks anything but ill of him and he is not allowed a redeeming feature’

WOLF HALL AND THE REAL ST THOMAS MORE

By  Graham Hutton

THE FIRST of a trilogy of novels about Thomas Cromwell by the successful English writer Hilary Mantel, ‘Wolf Hall’ has experienced a phenomenal success winning huge critical acclaim, selling over 1.2million copies and winning the Mann Booker prize. It has now been turned into a stage play and at both Stratford-upon-Avon and London’s West End this play, too, has been such a success that it is being described with such hyperboles as ‘a landmark’ and ‘a phenomenon’. No doubt the forthcoming TV series will reach even more people. Unfortunately, whatever the literary merits of the book, its popularity is something which Catholics can only regret. The great work of recent historians of the English Reformation such as Eamon Duffy, Christopher Haigh and Richard Rex, has done much to clear away the obfuscations of traditional English historiography around the medieval Church and the reformation. Continue reading

The Battle of Lepanto, October 7, 1571

Battle of LepantoThe anniversary of the naval victory of the Christian States over Mohammedan Imperialism has just passed. Few people in our (former) Christian states today are aware of the historical event of the Battle of Lepanto and how critical it was to the survival of Western Civilization. There was a time when few school children had not heard of the Battle of Lepanto.

A brief military history of the battle is here.

Wikipedia account here

Battle of Lepanto 2

Battle of Lepanto 3

Putting Christ and the Mass back into Christmas

HAPPY CHRISTMAS

By Paul Stenhouse

Fr Paul Stenhouse MSC PhD (Middle Eastern studies) is editor of Annals Australasia and an acknowledged expert on the (modern and ancient) Middle East. He is a regular contributor to the media discussion on events in the Middle East. Below is his editorial for the Annals’ Christmas edition which will be of interest to the conservative for its historical details – apart from anything else.

THE STREETS of Sydney have been bedecked since mid-November with pennants hanging from light poles featuring multi-coloured stars – which I take to represent the star of Bethlehem – and the words Happy Christmas. Continue reading