the distortion of discernment—I think we call it fear

“. . . we are facing an enormous and dramatic clash between good and evil,
death and life, the “culture of death” and the “culture of life”.
We find ourselves not only faced with but necessarily in the
midst of this conflict: we are all involved and we all share in it,
with the inescapable responsibility of choosing to be unconditionally
pro-life.”

(Evangelium Vitae)
Pope John Paul II


(detail of a painting I did 11 years ago/ Julie Cook)

According to Merriam-Webster, the definition of distortion is:
the act of twisting or altering something out of its true, natural,
or original state

The definition of discernment is:
the quality of being able to grasp and comprehend what is obscure

After reading Oneta’s post yesterday over on Sweet Aroma, I was moved
in wanting to echo her thoughts regarding her topic Roe v Wade and the
near cataclysmic and apocalyptic affect the notion of a new Supreme Court justice,
who happens to be a practicing Catholic and mother to seven, is having on the
Democratic party and those who are ardent Pro-Choice supporters.

Here is the link to Oneta’s post
REVIEW NOT WANTED

The entire fiasco taking place in this very public and radically vicious and divisive
confirmation hearing over the nomination of Judge Amy Coney Barrett is not based
on the merit of her time spent in court nor of the legal training or arduous education
she labored over in order to become a lawyer and judge, but rather,
it is over one simple thing…that thing, being fear.

It is the fear that a legal precedent determined in a court case in 1973 will be
automatically reversed.
As in POOF…should she be appointed to the bench, the henny penny folks
are thinking that suddenly a ruling from 1973 becomes null and void.

It doesn’t work that way folks.

Yet it is fear that is driving this train.
Fear for and over both life and death.

I thought I’d google quotes for the phrase “the sanctity of life”

One would think that Goodreads or even brainyquote, two of the top sites when one
is searching for a quote, would have tons of good quotes…but oddly
both had a mere handful—mostly obscure, a smattering of the well known, and
several of those in favor of population control.

I did not see the quotes by those who I knew in the past had spoken out very strongly
on that very thought.
And if memory serves me well, I had found those quotes among those very sites in past years.

My number one thought being Pope John Paul II…Mother Teresa coming in second.
I had to go back and google quotes by JPII just to find his words
on the subject…and find them I did.

I am still baffled by those who call themselves Catholic in faith and yet defend and even
promote the very idea of abortion…
How can you call yourself a Catholic and voice support for things that
are totally opposed to the tenents of your faith?

Or how can you call yourself a Christian and support the things that are
totally opposed to the command of God?

Nancy Pelosi and Joe Biden are two that come to mind.
Catholic in name only—and if I recall, such a person is usually not
allowed to receive Holy Communion—for to oppose the doctrine of the Church
is to cut one’s self from the Chruch.

The following are a few of Pope John Paul’s thoughts regarding the
sactity of life—both for the unborn as well as for the dying.

“A society will be judged on the basis of how it treats its weakest members;
and among the most vulnerable are surely the unborn and the dying.”

(Address to the New Ambassador of New Zealand to the Holy See May 25, 2000)

“As the family goes, so goes the nation, and so goes the whole world in which we live.”
(Homily, Perth, Australia, Nov. 30, 1986)

“No country on earth, no political system can think of its own future otherwise
than through the image of these new generations that will receive from their parents
the manifold heritage of values, duties and aspirations of the nation to which they
belong and of the whole human family. Concern for the child, even before birth,
from the first moment of conception and then throughout the years of infancy and youth,
is the primary and fundamental test of the relationship of one human being to another.”

(Address to the General Assembly of the United Nations Oct. 2, 1979)

“Every individual, precisely by reason of the mystery of the Word of God Who was
made flesh (cf. Jn 1:14), is entrusted to the maternal care of the Church.
Therefore every threat to human dignity and life must necessarily be felt in the
Church’s very heart;
it cannot but affect her at the core of her faith in the Redemptive Incarnation
of the Son of God, and engage her in her mission of proclaiming the Gospel of life
in all the world and to every creature (cf. Mk 16:15).”

(Evangelium Vitae)

“Not only is the fact of the destruction of so many human lives still to
be born or in their final stage extremely grave and disturbing,
but no less grave and disturbing is the fact that conscience itself,
darkened as it were by such widespread conditioning,
is finding it increasingly difficult to distinguish between good and evil in
what concerns the basic value of human life.”

(Evangelium Vitae)

no greater love…

“At the time of the liberation of the camps,
I remember, we were convinced that after Auschwitz there would be no more wars,
no more racism, no more hatred, no more anti-Semitism.
We were wrong.
This produced a feeling close to despair.
For if Auschwitz could not cure mankind of racism, was there any chance of success ever?
The fact is, the world has learned nothing.
Otherwise, how is one to comprehend the atrocities committed in Cambodia, Rwanda, Bosnia…”

Elie Wiesel, Open Heart


Piotr Cywinski poses in front of barracks in Auschwitz, the former Nazi death camp –
WOJTEK RADWANSKI/AFP/Getty Images

Last evening, I randomly stumbled upon a story about the current director of
Auschwitz Memorial in Poland, Piotr Cywinski.
The story was offered by the Telegraph’s journalist Will Brown.
And boy, what a tidal wave that tiny obscure article has had on my heart.

There I was Tuesday evening glancing at my computer waiting on “THE” debate of the century…
I was being bombarded with all the hype regarding the debate and all the utter idiocy raging
across this land of ours when a certain storyline caught my eye.

“Auschwitz director offers to serve time in place of 13-year-old Nigerian
sentenced to 10 years for blasphemy”

It seems that there is a 13-year-old boy in Nigeria, Omar Farouq, who has been sentenced to
10 years in prison for violating Sharia law for speaking blasphemy.

Let that sink in…
a 13-year-old child is sentenced to a state prison for speaking blasphemy according
to Sharia law.

According to Wikipedia, Sharia law is (/ʃəˈriːə/, Arabic: شريعة‎ [ʃaˈriːʕah]),
is a religious law forming part of the Islamic tradition.
It is derived from the religious precepts of Islam, particularly the Quran and the hadith.
In Arabic, the term sharīʿah refers to God’s immutable divine law and is contrasted with
fiqh, which refers to its human scholarly interpretations.
The manner of its application in modern times has been a subject of dispute between
Muslim fundamentalists and modernists.

So naturally, the United Nations has expressed its outrage over this case…
but we’ve seen how their outrage has effected other egregious global actions before.

According to the Telegraph’s article,
“Kola Alapinni, Omar’s lawyer, told The Telegraph that the adolescent has been held
in a prison for adults and not been allowed to see any legal representation.
If Omar had been older, Mr. Alapinni says, he would have been sentenced to death.”

According to Reuters, “If a pardon was not possible,
Cywinski said he and 119 other volunteers would take on the boy’s punishment
and each spend a month in a Nigerian jail.

As the director of a memorial to a place “where children were imprisoned and murdered,
I cannot remain indifferent to this disgraceful sentence for humanity,”
he said in the letter to President Muhammadu Buhari, posted on the Memorial’s Twitter account.”

Two spokesmen for Nigeria’s president declined to comment on the unusual intervention on Saturday.

And so Mr. Cywinski, who has children the same age as Omar, has volunteered to take the boy’s place.
“There are some times we have to stop our own silence and try to do something.
It’s not enough to just like something on Facebook or retweet it.”

Mr. Cywinski has appealed to the Nigerian president, President Buhari,
knowing that he had visited the Auschwitz Memorial in 2018 and believes that that
visit has had to have had an impact on the President.

Mr. Cywinski has yet to hear a response from the Nigerian President.

And so as I currently listen to two men jabbering back and forth, mostly hatefully
to one another, all about the ills of our Nation…my thoughts are actually
being pulled to a small story about a Polish man wanting to take the place of
a young Nigerian boy that he’s never met, who is about to be sentenced to prison for
10 years for speaking contrary against Muslim law…
In the big scope of humanity…I think it is this small story that speaks
so much louder than two grown men calling one another names.

https://www.yahoo.com/news/auschwitz-director-offers-serve-time-185809700.html

https://www.reuters.com/article/us-nigeria-crime-blasphemy/auschwitz-memorial-director-offers-to-share-nigerian-boys-blasphemy-jail-term-idUSKBN26H0OH

Greater love has no one than this,
that someone lay down his life for his friends.

John 15:13