Not-so-lovely thoughts, but all connected, and all planks on the deck of the ship of the culture of death, as we careen towards the edge of societal destruction and damnation. Three recent internet items struck me as part of the theme.
First, Bishop James V. Johnston’s excellent address at this year’s Annual Assembly of the Missouri Catholic Conference reminded Catholics of the call to fruitfulness and the dangers of a “mentality of sterility”:
Family life today is in crisis because it is formed in a mentality of sterility, he said. “And we might even say the sacrament of this attitude is contraception within marriage.”
Family life, and by extension the culture and the Church, “will only be renewed when the ‘domestic church’ rediscovers its call to fruitfulness at every level,” he noted.
After his talk, Bishop Johnston answered questions from several people. He said marriage is a hard life because things happen that are unexpected. A vision of marriage helps overcome these challenges, he said.
“This is at the heart of the meaning of life. This is the key to saving marriage. It is how the Church can save the world — we start with the family.”
True love, the bishop said, is freely given, total and without conditions, faithful to the end and fruitful. “Jesus reveals that and reveals it on the cross.”
In many dioceses, he said, the number of sacramental marriages is decreasing even as the number of Catholics increase.
To embrace a Christian vocation, he said, means that one must first be a disciple. Marriage and family is “where one learns the discipleship of Christ and learns to say yes to God.”
The next story that caught my eye is from the UK Mail and carries the following headline (I wouldn’t recommend this story to minors):
I call that the ‘duh’ story of the day.
Finally, an entry at Mark Mallett’s blog rounds out the trio, and points the way to the endgame of the contraceptive mentality. Mallett is very mystically-minded, and his blog often veers toward end-times themes. That is interesting, but not why I link him for this post. He has some very uncomfortably insightful comments about contraception, apostasy from the faith, and the consequences for the faithful. His post is fairly long, so I will post only excerpts here, but it is well worth reading in its entirety. He begins with a meditation on the word “wormwood”:
…In the symbolical language of the Apocalypse (Rev. 8:10, 11) a star is represented as falling on the waters of the earth, causing the third part of the water to turn wormwood. The name by which the Greeks designated it, absinthion, means “undrinkable.”
Indeed, the Church is meant to be the source of living water, nurturing and nursing her children on the Truth, who is Christ. But these waters in many places have been poisoned by heresy—mass heresy. Many are those who claim to be Catholic ministers, but like wolves in sheep’s clothing, lead their flocks to errant pastures, groomed and tended by dissident theologians—the false prophets of our day. It goes to show that a theological degree is no guarantee of orthodoxy. Indeed, the ecclesiastical orders in North America have been routing the faith to such a degree that several theological seminaries and universities as well as hospitals and schools are now Catholic in name only. They are often the very source of the moral pollution in our culture.
Forty years ago, when the world’s predators stood ready to devour the faithful, many sheep (such as my parents) were told that “the pill” was acceptable and that they could follow their conscience. Alas, the wolves were already inside the sheep pen, already inside the Church! I was born in 1968—just five months before the release of Humanae Vitae, Pope Paul VI’s encyclical letter reaffirming the Church’s teaching against contraception. It would be eight years later before my parents were taught the truth about birth control by two lay people (which resulted in the birth of my dear little brother.) How close I came to not existing due to false teaching! (Two years later, the minister who advised my parents, left the priesthood and got married.)
The flood of abortion, pornography, STD’s, and divorce entered Catholic homes and society at large when the moral dam of clergy collapsed. There is an elephant in the living room, and its name is Wormwood.
It is this acceptance of contraception that has led to and continues to foster a literal “Wormwood” in our waters. Studies are beginning to reveal that hormones from contraception are making their way back into the water supply. The results are frightening. In some cases, such as in Canada’s Great lakes or Colorado’s Boulder Creek, male fish have begun to change sex and their populations have been greatly reduced. It has been traced to estrogen—the female hormone found in oral contraceptives or birth control patches.
It’s the first thing that I’ve seen as a scientist that really scared me. It’s one thing to kill a river. It’s another thing to kill nature. If you’re messing with the hormonal balance in your aquatic community, you’re going deep down. You’re twiddling with how life proceeds. —Biologist John Woodling, Catholic Online , August 29, 2007
Furthermore, as evangelical writer Julio Severo points out, contraception also results in “micro-abortions”:
…rivers have become deposits of annihilated lives. Hundreds of millions of women use pills and other birth-control devices that provoke micro-abortions that end flushed in toilets, and then into rivers. —Julio Severo, article “Rivers of Blood”, December 17, 2008, LifeSiteNews.com
The water we cook with, we bathe in, we drink, is tainted with the blood of these murdered individuals. There is an elephant in the living room, and its name is Wormwood.
Who can fail to see that society is at the present time, more than in any past age, suffering from a terrible and deep-rooted malady which, developing every day and eating into its inmost being, is dragging it to destruction? —POPE PIUS X, Encyclical E Supremi, n. 2
…the elephant in the living room needs to be exposed. Wormwood needs to be uprooted. Poison needs to be drawn out so that Living Waters can flow again.