So then, brethren, stand firm and hold to the traditions which you were taught by us, either by word of mouth or by letter (2 Thess. 2:15). Guard what has been entrusted to you. Avoid the godless chatter and contradictions of what is falsely called knowledge, for by professing it some have missed the mark as regards faith (1 Tim. 6:21-22).

Sunday, December 27, 2015

Go get 'em, Fr. Longenecker! It must be Christmas: Anglican minister attacks Virgin Mary.

So,... this is Christmas?

During the lead up to and throughout the season of Christmas, Christians have come to expect attacks on the Faith by the usual "drive-by-media" types. However, when someone calling himself a Christian minister decides to toss grenades at the Faith of Catholics and others, well then—Houston, we have a problem.

Fr. Dwight Longenecker, Fidei Defensor, tackles the cheep provocations spewing out of the mouth of Giles Fraser, an Anglican minister, whose Christian credentials one would be right to question given his recent article in The Guardian.

Fr. Longenecker's essay begins:
Just when you thought the Anglicans couldn’t stoop much lower, in a disgusting article published, predictably, on Christmas Eve, Anglican priest-journalist Giles Fraser not only publicly denies the Virgin Birth, but he ridicules the idea, proposes that the Blessed Virgin Mary was just another teen fornicator and that it’s probably a good thing that Jesus was a bastard conceived when Mary had a romp with a Roman soldier.
I’m surprised that he didn’t title his article, “That’s Why Our Lady is a Tramp”
The crass arrogance of Fraser’s article in London’s The Guardian is only superseded by its ignorance.
My one consolation to Fr. Longenecker, though he, confident apologist that he is, has no need of such a reminder, would be that even heretics are useful. They provide us with the opportunity to clarify and defend the Catholic Faith delivered to us by the Apostles.
Read the rest of Fr. Longenecker's essay at his blog, Standing On My Head [click on article title]: Anglican Priest Smears the Virgin Mary.

Pope Francis' words come to mind:
15 January 2015 Last updated at 17:15 GMT [BBC source]

Pope Francis has defended the right to freedom of expression but has said it was wrong to provoke others by insulting their religion.

His comments followed the fatal attack on the satirical magazine Charlie Hebdo in Paris last week.
To illustrate his point, the pontiff told journalists on the papal plane his assistant could expect a punch if he ''cursed his mother''.
''It's normal - you cannot provoke, you cannot insult the faith of others,'' he said.
Let's be clear, the Holy Father was merely stating, in a slightly hyperbolic manner, what someone might expect from an irate person in the event of a real offence or threat. He was not condoning unjust or disproportionate retaliatory behaviour.

While Christians are never called to nor permitted to engage in irrational violence for the sake of violence, Fr. Longenecker has rightly offered Giles Fraser a corrective tap (a metaphorical upper cut?) for Fraser's attack on the Blessed Mother—our mother!
The Church's version of the Marquess of Queensberry rules, i.e., fraternal correction, rightly allows for the application of reasonable means of defence (think, e.g., just war theory). The Church understands that a rational proportionate response to any attack may be permissible in order to render an unjust attacker incapable of committing violence of one kind or another against innocent people. Likewise, the Church acknowledges the right of states to enact and enforce laws which protect the common good [CCC1897, etc.; note the principles which guide the understanding of punishment: deterrence; retributive justice; reform of the criminal; and rendering the criminal harmless.]. In other words, retributive and restorative justice—yes; retaliatory acts—no [cf. Retributive Justice and Capital Punishment by Stephen Barr/First Things [source/link].

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"A multitude of wise men is the salvation of the world(.)—Wisdom 6:24. Readers are welcome to make rational and responsible comments. Any comment that 1) offends human dignity and/or 2) which constitutes an irrational attack on the Catholic Faith will not go unchallenged. If deemed completely stupid, such a comment will most assuredly not see the light of day. Them's the rules. Don't like 'em? Move on.

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