Nota in Brevis

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Pope Saint John Paul II, a Reflection


Today is the memorial of Pope Saint John Paul II, who was installed as the 264th successor of Saint Peter on this day in 1978, which seems aeons ago in more ways than one.  An era without the Internet, Facebook and smartphones, scarcely imaginable.  His feast was added by Pope Francis two years ago when John Paul was canonized, a welcome addition to the calendar of saints, not least since I happen to share, by a quirk of my own ... (Continue reading)

Kaine, Trump and Clinton, Oh My


I have an article posted this morning on Crisis magazine, on How Catholic is Kaine, Hillary Clinton's Vice-Presidential running mate.  Feel free to peruse. I should have added the irony that Donald Trump's running mate, Mike Pence, a former Catholic, and now apparently a Protestant, describes himself publicly as '100% pro-life'.  The scandalous irony is that the lapsed Catholic Pence is more Catholic than the proclaimed 'devout Catholic' Kaine.  The Protestants are living out our Catholicism better than we Catholics.  ... (Continue reading)

It’s a S.T.E.M. World, Baby


A recent article, sponsored by none other than the Royal Bank of Canada, had a list of the top ten ‘most valuable’ university degrees ranked, as is the wont of a bank I suppose, by how much you could make upon graduation.  Happiness, fulfilment, joy, the breadth and length of knowledge, all be damned, just show me the money! Of the ten, five were in engineering, two in accounting and finance, and one in business (the others were geosciences, and ... (Continue reading)

Lepanto, Language and Hurricanes


Today, the feast of the Most Holy Rosary, marks the 444th anniversary of one of the most decisive battles not only in naval history, but in all of history, and I refer of course to the Battle of Lepanto, fought by a Christian fleet, led by Don Juan of Austria, son of the Emperor Charles V, in the waters of the Adriatic against an apparently superior Islamic Turkish fleet, vowing to turn Saint Peter's into a mosque.   Father Rutler ... (Continue reading)

Clarifying Thoughts on the Olympic Ideal


I suppose I am in the Olympic mood, but a couple of further thoughts on sports and athletics, which are on most people's minds, not least in Canada, which won a gold medal yesterday in high jump, when Derek Drouin leapt over 2.38 metres, or just a tad over 7.8 feet.  Impressive, if my anti-Olympic self might without hypocrisy say so. Which leads me into a clarification:  Please do be aware, dear readers, that I do consider sports as good, even ... (Continue reading)

Hydro Rates, Jet Set Ministers and Sid the Kid

It was reported the other day that it is now economically impossible for hydro rates to decrease in Ontario.  You may wonder why, and if I can find the article again, I will link to it:  The basic premise is that the Liberal government, under McGuinty and Wynne, have bound Ontarians to contracts with 'green' energy producers, so that we (the consumers) buy their so-called clean energy (wind, solar) at a rate many times higher than so-called 'dirty' energy (gas, ... (Continue reading)

Facing East, and Other Thoughts

facing east

As I have mentioned previously, Cardinal Sarah, the head of the Congregation of Divine Worship (so the highest authority in these matters besides the Pope himself) has asked for priests to return to the ad orientem mode of saying Mass, worshiping 'with the people', facing the 'East' and the return of Christ, as was done for millennia prior to the revision after the Second Vatican Council.  As this article by Christopher Ruddy in First Things makes clear, sadly, the ... (Continue reading)

Nota in Brevis July 13: Laws, Trump and post-Brexit

Nota in Brevis July 13: Laws, Trump and post-Brexit

For those of you who, perhaps rightly so, misconstrued my article on the collapse of the rule of law, please do be aware that my intention was not to present an anti-cop, nor pro-'Black Lives Matter' piece, but rather to use the current situation in America to show that 'law', understood in the broad sense as a balance of authorities, is breaking down, a result of the more fundamental crumbling of ... (Continue reading)

Saint Benedict: Ora et Labora

saint benedict

Today is the feast of Saint Benedict (ca. 480-547), the father of Western monasticism and one of the main forces in preserving Western culture through the tumultuous years of post-antiquity. His retreat from the world, paradoxically, is what saved the world, as he and his monks, guided by Benedict’s wise and prudent regula or rule (well worth a persual even by laymen), worked and prayed, copying manuscripts, turning arid soil into fruitful farmland, developing Gregorian chant (not just the most ... (Continue reading)

More’s Conscience

more and fisher

Today we commemorate Saint Thomas More, husband, father, lawyer, sometime chancellor of England, marytyred in 1535 with his compatriot Saint John Fisher, Bishop of Rochester and cardinal of the Church. More was actually put to death on July 6, with Fisher being beheaded on this day, when they are both remembered. Both saints are martyrs of conscience (as are all martyrs, really, as John Paul II made clear in Veritatis Splendor), More's case made famous in the 1954 play by Robert ... (Continue reading)

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