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Showing posts from August, 2012

Catholics in NZ need to be Catholic or leave the Church

A major problem with a lot of Catholics in the Church today is that they don't really know what it is that they are supposed to believe, or they know and they think it's quite acceptable to pick and choose for themselves. Take Josie Pegani, for example, a woman who to me seems quite likeable and smart from what I've heard from her on the radio, who today on NewsTalkZB identified herself as Catholic. During a recent Sunday at Mass, she said she heard the Bishop's Letter to Generation Y on Marriage being read out, and she found herself quite cross by it. "We are a broad church", she said, thus implying that it's ok for Catholics to think that same-sex marriage is fine. But the "broad church" is Anglican, not Catholic. Don't you believe the Pope talks directly to God, quipped Sean Plunkett to her. That would have been a perfect teaching moment to say that the Pope, when teaching on faith and morals, speaks for God. And on marriage, th

Teacher suspended by Catholic school over same-sex marriage

A teacher was suspended by a Catholic school over the same-sex marriage bill that passed it's first reading last night. It's the type of event that would have passed unnoticed, had not the issue at hand been so polarising. And add the word Catholic to the mix, and there's a story that the media have taken up with interest, because the teacher suspended was siding with pupils who took the pro-same-sex marriage position. Students who organised a Facebook page [against the principal's and the Catholic position] were allegedly threatened and Studdart [the suspended teacher], who took up their cause, has been suspended and could lose his job. Studdart said the principal "took the page down and basically frightened a student into doing it which I think is awful". Fun and games. Related link : Teacher suspended in gay marriage row ~ TVNZ

The redefinition of marriage bill on the boil now

The redefinition of marriage bill passed it's first reading last night, with all but one Labour MPs voting for it (not really a surprise) and more than half of National MPs voting for it as well (very disappointing). On the positive side, it's good that John Key encouraged his MPs to vote in a way that they thought was right (that was my prayer for him and all MPs yesterday). Key said he had encouraged his MPs to do what they believed was right. "I'm not looking at who's voting one way or another, I'm not judging them on it." It's disappointing, however, that John Key's framing this as "marriage equality", a propaganda term that is somewhat meaningless and false. I don't have a direct quote, as I heard him say it on a NewsTalkZB news bulletin. I'm also not impressed with his talk of a "tougher and nastier" debate. By saying that, he's implying that opponents to the redefinition of marriage are bigots, withou

Why is an opposition bill gaining such traction? [UPDATE]

You'd almost be forgiven for thinking that Labour still ran the country! I should be amazed that a bill from the Opposition is getting such traction with the Prime Minister and the Government. I'm not,however, since liberalism of this type is an infectious mind virus and unless a person has a very good grounding in who they are and why they do things, they'll be swayed by the slightest apparently favourable wind, which in this case seems to be following along in the footsteps of David Cameron and Barak Obama. Both of whom have not enacted same-sex marriage in their respective countries, but, they're working on it and we always like jumping the gun and being first, just like with the fantastic emissions trading scheme that we have going that most of the world are slacking in implementing. But nevermind! The last time a bill from the Opposition was taken up in this way by the Government, thus allowing it to pass with a slim majority was, when? If anyone can think

Euthanasia and Rodney Hide

Rodney Hide is writing about the legalisation of suicide again, where another person can help you die if you don't feel your life is worth living anymore. He uses the story of his friend Martin, who tried to kill himself when he found out he had Huntington's disease. Martin’s mother had died of Huntington’s disease. Her truly dreadful death took years. In the final stages of Huntington’s the mind loses its ability to control even the simplest movements – even swallowing is difficult and many sufferers die choking. So, at 19 years old, Martin learned he had a 50 per cent chance of suffering the disease. He decided not to marry. Or have children. The risk was too great. And in his 40th year he got the fateful diagnosis. We knew what he was planning. But the law forbade us helping or even knowing. He put his affairs in order. On his own, one night at home, alone, he pinned a note to his new pyjama top: “Huntington’s disease: Please Do Not Resuscitate”. He attempted a mas

Fight back in Scotland over same-sex marriage

There's a bit of a fight going on in Scotland right now between the Catholic Church and the Scottish Government over same-sex marriage. The Church's position on marriage has been called an "anti-gay agenda" and there's the fear that the Church "will take the fight into schools." The Church is not rolling over in Scotland, and I think that is what is particularly worrying for the reality redefiners - that the Catholic Church is fighting back. The Scottish government has been urged to stand firm over its plans to legalise same-sex marriage and not be derailed by an "anti-gay agenda" , as the Catholic church in Scotland launched a campaign to maintain "the universally accepted definition of marriage" as a union between a man and a woman. In a letter read out in all 500 of the church's parishes , Scotland's Catholic bishops expressed their "deep disappointment" that Alex Salmond's administration has vowed to pa

Falsity is the mark of the devil

Castel Gandolfo (AsiaNews) - "Jesus knew that among the 12 Apostles one did not believe, Judas," said Benedict XVI. In speaking about Judas, his unbelief, his desire to betray, his devilish nature , the pontiff used a tone not usually associated with homiletics. Compared this to Saint Peter who, in response to Jesus' question "Do you also want to leave?", answered, "Master, to whom shall we go? You have the words of eternal life. We have come to believe and are convinced that you are the Holy One of God" (John, 6:67-69)." [...] "Judas could have left as many disciples did," the pontiff explained. "Indeed, he should have left had he been honest. Instead, he stayed with Jesus, not out faith, nor out of love, but with the secret desire of taking revenge against the Master. Why? Because Judas felt betrayed by Jesus, and decided in turn to betray him. Judas was a Zealot; he wanted a winning Messiah, one who would lead a revolt

Restless Heart - the movie

A movie on St Augustine - looks awesome! I checked Flicks to see if it's going to be released here in NZ, but no such luck.  If you want to see this movie, you'll have to buy it online.

There is no conservative case for same-sex marriage

Today David Farrar has written a post entitled The conservative case for same-sex marriage , an oxymoron if I ever heard one. I've heard these so called conservative arguments a number of times, and basically they boil down to, if marriage is so great for society, then why not expand it? Many of my fellow conservatives have an almost knee-jerk hostility toward gay marriage. This does not make sense, because same-sex unions promote the values conservatives prize. Marriage is one of the basic building blocks of our neighborhoods and our nation. At its best, it is a stable bond between two individuals who work to create a loving household and a social and economic partnership. We encourage couples to marry because the commitments they make to one another provide benefits not only to themselves but also to their families and communities. Marriage requires thinking beyond one’s own needs. It transforms two individuals into a union based on shared aspirations, and in doing so establis

Truly awful - two pederasts in NZ schools - how many more?

I'm not going to condemn this man, that's not my place, as his actions have already condemned him. It will be interesting to see if anyone's head rolls over this - people who might have known, and done nothing. Many Kaitaia parents will be hurting over the offending of a trusted teacher who sexually assaulted a dozen boys, a resident says. James Parker, 37, appeared in Kaitaia District Court this morning where he pleaded guilty to 49 charges involving indecent assault and sexual connection with children aged 12 - 16, and committing indecent acts and sexual assault on boys under 12. Parker was deputy principal at Pamapuria School in Kaitaia at the time of the offending, which happened from November 2005 to as recently as last month. I wonder how many boys over the age of 16 there were, that they couldn't get him on? And then there's another one: People "looked the other way" and allowed a convicted paedophile to work among children at six d

Hawaii Upholds Traditional Marriage

Hawaii upholds marriage as being between one man and one woman – In a day when elected officials and activist judges in many states across America are maneuvering to undermine the traditional and legal meaning of marriage, the clear thinking of a federal court in Hawaii is as refreshing as an island breeze. On August 8, the U.S. District Court for the District of Hawaii upheld that state’s definition of marriage as the legal union of one man and one woman – supporting the will of the people over that of a small group of activists and a recalcitrant governor. Yeh, right on. At least one state in America truly gets it. “Throughout history and societies, marriage has been connected with procreation and childrearing,” the court said in its order. “It follows that it is not beyond rational speculation to conclude that fundamentally altering the definition of marriage to include same-sex unions might result in undermining the societal understanding of the link between marriage, pr

We think it's time that Catholics stop being Catholic

A letter from the NZ Bishops to the young people in this country has finally made it to the Dominion Post this morning. But, rather than really highlighting the contents of the letter, the paper chose to add some controversy by getting a quote by a group of non-Catholics who are basically calling upon Catholics to stop being so Catholic!! What on earth is our problem, believing that morality is set in stone and unable to change with the times?? A letter to young people from Roman Catholic bishops condemning gay marriage has been rejected by other Christian leaders. The letter to "Kiwis of Generation Y" from all six of New Zealand's Catholic bishops advises against allowing same-sex couples to marry in the eyes of the law for the sake of "society as a whole". "This is no small matter, nor quibbling about words; this is an attempt to re-engineer the status and structure of family life in New Zealand," they wrote. Fifty clergy and laity from An

What the devil sounds like when he's trying to convince you to do something

Whale Oil this morning, on Judith Collins deciding to vote to redefine marriage: There you go. No big deal. Not that hard is it? And Cactus Kate last month, on what it will cost John Banks to support the redefinition of marriage: One Press release and questions from media, one day of his life. That's all. Both the comments above highlight exactly how Satan works to tempt people to do what they don't want to do.  It's no big deal, it's just one day of your life, not that hard.  And then what you've done what he wants you to do, you can't take it back, you can only ask for forgiveness and try and make up for it - OR - you deny your own own conscience and pretend it was ok to do.  If you do the latter, he's got you good, but unfortunately, denied consciences cause all sorts of other problems. Here's the Venerable Fulton Sheen on the devil and how he works and how different Our Lord is before we do something wrong. Related link: Crusher Voti

'50 Shades' About Paedophilia?

According to a comment made by a female reader at another blog who works with troubled and abused children, the 50 Shades Of Grey book that is so popular at the moment may actually be a thinly veiled story of paedophilia where the older man is a Jerry Sandusky type of abuser. Although in the book, the woman's age is given as 21, the reader and her friend contend that this is a thin cover and the signs point to a much younger aged protagonist. Now I know after saying that, many female fans of 50 Shades, many of them mothers, will naturally put up a defense against that kind of description.  These women, being mothers, are naturally wired to protect kids.  People like Jerry Sandusky are viewed with hatred, revulsion, and disgust.  Rightfully so.  What mother would want to condone anything having to do with the sexual abuse of children?  Of innocents? [...] My professional experience centers around nearly 20 years with Child Protective Services.  Over that time, I’ve seen sit

The Hockey Stick and Climate Change

As some-one said in the comments: An excellent summary of how climate science is done! It seems Mann's Hockey stick remains the Gold Standard of climate science, according to my son's school teacher. Here is a clear summary of some of the controversy around the Hockey Stick saga that is worth linking to: Caspar and the Jesus Paper and for a more detailed account, perhaps read the book: The Hockey Stick Illusion: Climategate and the Corruption of Science And old old post about the IPCC Report as the Gold Standard: IPCC - Lie Pollution

My retreat and same-sex marriage preparation for tonight

I went on a Catholic retreat over the weekend, and since then I've been reorienting my life. I do spend too much time on the computer, so have been staying away and doing other things instead. Semi-normal posting will resume as soon I integrate the changes I've made. In the meantime, I have to prepare for a talk I'm giving on the proposed changes to marriage in New Zealand. I've noticed that Matt and Madeleine Flannagan (of MandM ) wrote a very good post on the subject on WhaleOil's blog yesterday. If you want to understand the serious deficit in logic being employed by the marriage equality crowd, read Guest post: critiqueing the case for same-sex marriage . The best article that I've read so far that addresses all the current issues and major arguments, is What is Marriage? It specifically spells out the difference in understand of marriage between those of us who want to adhere to a more traditional view (the Conjugal View below), with those who wish

You don't need the Biblical definition of marriage to know what marriage is

I'm quoting an article that is a couple of years old, back from the debates in California entrenching the traditional view of marriage in law. The proposal put forward was that: Proposition 8 , "Only marriage between a man and a woman is valid or recognized in California." In the second paragraph below, the writer talks about how religion did not define marriage, that it's definition is easily discerned from "human nature and it's fulfillment". Kmiec and the editors of the Times join a long series of activists who insist on framing the same-sex marriage debate as a clash between civil liberties and religion. But that’s not what it is. This debate is about the substantive differences between same-sex marriage and traditional marriage, whatever they are called. The question is whether the substance of the traditional institution should be endorsed both by voluntary associations (including houses of worship) and by the state as the ideal union of adult

Take away state regulation of marriage?

I've noticed a growing number of people (many of them Christian) who think the solution to the state redefining marriage is for the state to remove itself from the regulation of marriage completely. I reject this view completely. Marriage is a social institution, and removing the state from the regulation of marriage would speed up the social unraveling that we are now currently experiencing. The state has an absolute interest in marriage because without marriage, there is no state. We may as well just close down Parliament completely and go back to tribal living, where absolute authority is vested in leaders of small groups. Can I produce a coherent argument as to why marriage not regulated by the state would be so destructive to the state? Not yet, but I will. Even if NZ makes a terrible mistake in redefining marriage, we need to stick with the State as a regulator of marriage, because this situation will not last long. At some point, people will wonder what the point

John Key inconsistent

John Key speaking at the Big Gay Out John Key's position on redefining marriage is inconsistent. Is he acting as Prime Minister, or as an elected member with his own conscience? If, as Prime Minister, he thinks that marriage should be completely redefined, then why doesn't the Government put forward a bill to that effect? John Key is obviously not acting as an electorate MP, as he is saying that the views of his Helensville electorate most likely not change how he's going to vote. These voters are basically going to be unrepresented when it comes to this major change to a fundamental institution of society, which is something they should think about future elections when voting. John Key seems to want to act as an elected member with his own conscience, but wanting his Helensville electorate constituents to see him as acting as Prime Minister, therefore not being beholden to their views. However, he's not acting as Prime Minister, because his party's p

Israel Saves Life Of Hamas Leader Brother-In-Law

Israel showing the respect it has for human life: even the life of it's enemies - The difference between Israel and the Palestinians has never been so starkly illustrated; four months ago the brother-in-law of Hamas Prime Minister Ismail Haniyeh had a serious cardiac problem which could not be solved in Gaza. So what did Israel do? It sent a Magen Adom ambulance to the Erez crossing, picked the man up, and rushed him all the way to a Petah Tikvah hospital where he stayed for a week until his condition was stable again. Haniyeh viciously attacks Israel every chance he gets; after the terror attack in Sinai on August 5 that killed 16 Egyptians, he joined with the Muslim Brotherhood and actually accused Israel of planning the attack, saying, "The attack's method confirms some sort of Israeli involvement aiming to achieve political and security goals, cause tension on the border with Egypt and destroy joint efforts to end the Gaza blockade.” Just today an Egyptian air

Same-sex marriage causing Labour breakup

There's most likely a very good reason why previous Prime Minister, Helen Clark, didn't go all the way to Same-sex Marriage and just stopped with Civil Unions. Looks like Louisa Wall and Co. will find out what this reason was the hard way. The gay marriage bill has started to tear the Labour Party to pieces. Labour's Mangere MP Sua William Sio has basically called for a divorce from the bill, saying it should be withdrawn - because it could cost the party the next election. Yes, that's right - Sio says the bill could cost Labour an election. And you can't really fault Sua's logic: he says it will wipe out the Pacific vote in South Auckland - that's Labour's heartland, that's where it wins elections. Labour's not likely to have won the next election anyway. But this won't help. It conjures up all the images of a Labour Party obsessed by so-called "social engineering" like anti-smacking rather than issues like jobs and

Google account holders - turn on two-step verification!

What a terrifying story! Last week, this poor man had all the data on his iPhone, iPad and MacBook deleted, all because someone managed to get into his Google account! In the space of one hour, my entire digital life was destroyed. First my Google account was taken over, then deleted. Next my Twitter account was compromised, and used as a platform to broadcast racist and homophobic messages. And worst of all, my AppleID account was broken into, and my hackers used it to remotely erase all of the data on my iPhone, iPad, and MacBook. In many ways, this was all my fault. My accounts were daisy-chained together. Getting into Amazon let my hackers get into my Apple ID account, which helped them get into Gmail, which gave them access to Twitter. Had I used two-factor authentication for my Google account, it’s possible that none of this would have happened , because their ultimate goal was always to take over my Twitter account and wreak havoc. Lulz. I've just set up two-step veri

Growing up with two mothers made him "strange"

Robert Lopez grew up in a lesbian household, and rather than preparing him for life as an adult, he found that he just didn't fit in with anyone, even those who identify as gay.  He thinks it's because he didn't learn all the male/female social cues that everyone, even those of homosexual orientation, take for granted.  So, while he was a straight-A student, everyone found him bizarre. Quite simply, growing up with gay parents was very difficult , and not because of prejudice from neighbors. People in our community didn’t really know what was going on in the house. To most outside observers, I was a well-raised, high-achieving child, finishing high school with straight A’s. Inside, however, I was confused . When your home life is so drastically different from everyone around you, in a fundamental way striking at basic physical relations, you grow up weird. I have no mental health disorders or biological conditions. I just grew up in a house so unusual that I was destine

Getting killed in the hospital

On Being Frank, Kereopa points out that while we are all distracted with same-sex marriage, a hidden debate over the ability of the State to kill people if they want to die (he doesn't quite put in like that, but that's what it amounts to) is "bubbling away without much attention." I agree with Kereopa when he says that euthanasia is abhorrent. It's the continuation of the ever present slide into the pits of hell that so few in New Zealand seem to be fighting, and even worse are shrouding the arguments in layers of supposed compassion. There is nothing compassionate about making hospitals places where you wonder if you enter, if a doctor or your family will decide for you that your life is not worth continuing and there actively hasten your death. Unfortunately, death hastening is already occurring in some (or is it all?) New Zealand hospitals through dehydration. A friend of mine just this year had her 79 year old father in hospital, and because he was un

Countering Rodney Hide on same-sex "marriage" [UPDATE]

Yesterday, an opinion piece by Rodney Hide on same-sex marriage was published in the Herald on Sunday.  Mr Hide's article presumes that Parliament can create our reality and that in this recreated reality where marriage, a major social institution, is redefined by the whim of a few Parliamentarians will have with no deleterious effects to our way of life.  Most of his article is a history lesson on marriage and homosexuality in New Zealand, but curiously enough, the breakdown of the family, and the increasingly high cost of maintaining fatherless children through all these changes have not been included in Hide's piece - as if there is no connection. Hide starts with very bold statements on who has the authority to determine marriage. It's Parliament that decides who we can and can't marry. It's not decided by a committee of clergy. Or handed down by Holy Writ. So, marriage is whatever Parliament says it is?  Yet, marriage pre-dates the State, and thus comes

Made from the beginning, male and female

Here is part of the very first talk John Paul II gave on the theology of the body. He started with marriage and Our Lord's explanation of God's original plan for marriage - that man and woman become one flesh.  Also the vital importance of how human beings were originally created, as man and woman.  Not two men or two woman, but man and woman. "And Pharisees came up to him and tested him by asking, 'Is it lawful to divorce one's wife for any cause?' He answered, 'Have you not read that he who made them from the beginning made them male and female, , and said, 'For this reason a man shall leave his father and mother and be joined to his wife, and the two shall become one flesh'? So they are no longer two but one flesh. What therefore God has joined together, let not man put asunder.' They said to him, 'Why then did Moses command one to give a certificate of divorce, and to put her away?' He said to them, 'For your hardness of hea

Gay Blogger Writes Agasint Same Sex Marriage For Irish Daily Mail

Saw this last night. It was originally published in April last year in the Irish Daily Mail and written by a gay blogger who does not agree with gay marriage. A lot of good points in his post. The whole thing is worth reading. He writes that marriage is not the "end point of romance", but the beginning of the family unit and of raising children. I am not a big believer in people making arguments on the back of who or what they happen to be. When I last made the case in these pages against gay marriage, about a year ago, I didn’t feel the need to mention that I am gay myself. Arguments stand on their own two feet, or don’t, but not on the strength of who happens to be making them. Nor, I don’t mind adding, did I particularly want to drag my own life into what is often a bad-tempered debate. But I am concerned enough about the way things are going to make an exception. Explaining that you oppose gay marriage as a gay man tends to get a baffled response at first. This is und

Politicians caving over same-sex marriage

I expect the National politicians who are "undecided" to cave over the same-sex marriage vote. Why? Well, John Key is basically telling them they should without overtly telling them through his comments in the media, and they will set themselves up for all sorts of grief if they don't vote the "right way" from the types of people who will boycott a baker because he refuses to make a wedding cake for a "gay marriage" . It's the modern test of morality for political elites to be on the right side of the gay marriage debate. If you are on the wrong side, you will be vilified. What politician wants that, especially if they have no strong moral backbone? Listening to NewsTalkZB this morning, I noticed that both politicians that Mike Hosking had on with him were almost offended at the idea that such a massive change to a primary social institution should go to referendum. Their consciences were seen to be enough, even though Steven Joyce wasn