Category Archives: Philosophy

Is the Catholic Church still a missionary Church?

One of Archbishop Vigano’s most pointed criticisms in his condemnation of Vatican II (see previous post) was about ecumenism. The liberal-left and dissident factions of the Council hammered the (alleged) need for the Church to become more ‘ecumenical and pastoral’ in its orientation. In his criticism, the archbishop focused on one of the most controversial sentences in all of the Council documents: ‘Ecclesia Christi subsistit in Ecclesia Catholica‘ – the Church of Christ subsists in the Catholic Church.

I have been rather cavalier in presenting my view on this sentence. I understood it to mean (uncontroversially, I thought) that ‘the Church of Christ’ referred to the Church in its pristine purity (the substance) and the Catholic Church to include the fallibility of the human person (the accidents). And if elements of the pristine Church were to be found in other churches, then they were at a stage on the way to the one true Church. Missionary work was required to bring those with a deficient understanding to the full faith.

For example, Dr Taylor Marshall (see previous posts) started out as a fervent baptist. Reflection on his faith brought him to the Episcopal Church in which he became an episcopal priest. The journey of faith continued until he saw the full faith in the Catholic Church. He is now in full missionary mode as a philosopher and theologian. I strongly recommend his youtube videos.

Archbishop Vigano points out how the Second Vatican Council’s documents on ecumenism led to the opposite of this process of conversion. Indeed, conversion was now deemed no longer necessary. One of the (German) bishops at the recent Amazonia Synod was heard to boast that he had not converted anyone in fifty years. Archbishop Vigano:

Together with numerous Council Fathers, we thought of ecumenism as a process, an invitation that calls dissidents to the one Church of Christ, idolaters and pagans to the one True God, and the Jewish people to the promised Messiah. But from the moment it was theorized in the conciliar commissions, ecumenism was configured in a way that was in direct opposition to the doctrine previously expressed by the Magisterium…

Numerous practicing Catholics, and perhaps also a majority of Catholic clergy, are today convinced that the Catholic Faith is no longer necessary for eternal salvation; they believe that the One and Triune God revealed to our fathers is the same as the god of Mohammed…

Thus “Ecclesia Christi subsistit in Ecclesia Catholica” does not specify the identity of the two, but the subsistence of one in the other and, for consistency, also in other churches: here is the opening to interconfessional celebrations, ecumenical prayers, and the inevitable end of any need for the Church in the order of salvation, in her unicity, and in her missionary nature.

What does the Gospels say? The Gospel for Trinity Sunday (2 weeks ago) has the crucial passage:

At that time: Jesus said to his disciples: All power is given to Me in heaven and on earth. Going, therefore, teach ye all nations, baptizing them in the Name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost; teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you. And, behold, I am with you all the days, even to the consummation of the world. Matt: 28, 18-20

This is one of those scriptural passages that could hardly be clearer. It renders those promoting an interpretation of ecumenism based on the so-called ‘spirit’ rank heretics.

The Catholic Church is prescriptively a missionary Church.

The Conciliar Series

I have begun a series of novels that has as its background the cultural revolution of the 1960s and 1970s (1965-1975). The Catholic Church’s Second Vatican Council was part of this cultural revolution. The bishops in St Peter’s of Rome (1962-1965) had imbibed from the same cup of radical anti-Catholic, anti-Christian civilization philosophies driving the mob in Paris in 1968.

The location of the stories in the Conciliar Series will mostly be in Holland and Australia. The first book in the series TIMES OF DISTRESS plays out in Holland, Australia, and New Guinea.

Aristotle’s revenge

Assoc. Professor Jason Morgan reviews Dr Edward Feser’s latest book, Aristotle’s Revenge: The Metaphysical Foundations of Physical and Biological Science, on the Imaginative Conservative website. Dr Feser is an expert on Aristotelian/Thomist philosophy who writes with enviable clarity about challenging philosophical concepts and issues. I can recommend Feser’s Aquinas: A Beginner’s Guide for those who have long stared at the name St Thomas Aquinas with the thought, ‘I must read what he thinks some day’, but is put off by an assumed complexity of thought. This is the book for that person. It might serve as an introduction to Feser’s latest book that attempts (with apparent success) to demonstrate what the materialists deny.

Aristotle’s Revenge

By Jason Morgan|February 18th, 2020

Philosophy departments are struggling in the West these days. Philosophy majors at most universities are as rare as a hen’s teeth, and students overall—like the adult population as a whole—remain almost perfectly ignorant of even the rudiments of intellectual history or any branch of philosophical inquiry. From the pre-Socratics to the Vienna School and everyone in-between, Leibniz to Plato to Kant, philosophy is a foreign country to all but a hardy few who still visit the shelves in the 100s of the Dewey Decimal System.

Read the rest here…

My Status – Where I am up to

FOR THE TIME BEING, I am consumed with reading and research for the final third of my novel, TIMES OF DISTRESS, the first book in my Winterbine Series. I have little time for other writing which explains why most of my posts on my two websites are links (sometimes with an introduction) to essays or comments I feel are of particular interest.

I will add to my important section on Cardinal Pell as soon as I have time.

I have recently opened a Facebook page for The Edmund Burke Society – Australia. I would really appreciate it if you would give it a like. The more likes I have, the more coverage the page gets. Many thanks.

Roger Scruton dies

Roger Scruton, perhaps the greatest philosopher of the 20th century, has died. He has left a vast trove of philosophical writing that requires inexhaustible study. It is significant that the left did all it could to destroy him. His FOOLS, FRAUDS AND FIREBRANDS: THINKERS OF THE NEW LEFT (2005) is among his most powerful books. The Edmund Burke Society strongly recommends this book to gain an understanding of left’s motivations over the last 60 years.

EPPC Mourns Death of Sir Roger Scruton

January 13, 2020

The Ethics and Public Policy Center mourns the death of EPPC Senior Fellow Sir Roger Scruton, who died on Sunday, January 12, at age 75.

“We grieve the loss of our brilliant colleague Roger Scruton. We are deeply grateful that Roger made EPPC his American think-tank home for the past seven years. He has left a remarkably robust intellectual legacy,” said EPPC President Ed Whelan.

The author of more than 50 books on topics such as art, music, architecture, conservation, philosophy, and religion, Sir Roger was knighted by Queen Elizabeth II in 2016 for his “services to philosophy, teaching and public education.” In 2019, he earned recognition from the governments of Hungary, Poland, and the Czech Republic for his courageous anti-communist efforts and his legacy of moral and intellectual leadership.

Read on…

Roger Scruton's final diary of 2019

ROGER SCRUTON: MY 2019

Despite everything, I have so much to be grateful for

Roger Scruton, Spectator UK

January

My 2018 ended with a hate storm, in response to my appointment as chair of the government’s Building Better, Building Beautiful Commission. But the new year brings a lull, and I hope and pray that the Grand Inquisitor enthroned by social media will find another target.

February

The 27th is my 75th birthday, and as it happens the last Wednesday meet of foxhounds for the season. We host the meet and celebrate with our neighbours. Despite my wife Sophie’s protests, I maintain my resolve to give up hunting at 75, counting again the broken bones, sprains and muscular disorders acquired over 35 years in the saddle, or, rather, out of it. On my last hunt, I am glad to say, I stay in the saddle all day.

Read on…

Amazon Synod to Renew Bizarre ‘Catacomb Pact’

There was a blaze of commentary about the undisguised pagan activity in the Vatican during the so-called Amazon Synod, including powerful insightful comment from people on the traditional Catholic side. Dr Taylor Marshall and Church Militant are excelling. Dr Marshall with his sidekick Timothy Gordon is terrific on the theological and philosophical implications. Michael Voris continues to pound the clerical weak minds running the show. But for me, the third member of the trio I follow, Michael Matt of Remnant newspaper, is out there leading the charge. His videos are a combination of cold-sober dissection and satirising of the absurdities the Vatican people think we can’t see through. I will continue to provide the link to the best of Matt’s videos. See the video HERE.

What Made American Academia Great (and How It Was Destroyed)

BY GARRETT WARD SHELDON| JUNE 21ST, 2019

The processes and ideology destroying American universities described below by Professor emeritus Garrett Ward Sheldon of the University of Virginia are almost an exact parallel with the decline – or rather degeneration – of Australian universities.

Since retiring from the university, several people have asked if I miss it. I tell them I miss what it was, but not what it has become. Higher education in America has gone from being the best in the world to one of the most pathetic. Why? It’s hard to describe what academia was to me and to millions in the past. It was not just a job, but a way of life, and of Western Civilization; and I’m so close to it, that it’s hard to describe—like trying to describe one’s own mother (hence alma mater!).

But let me try. University life at its best was both the most serious, difficult, challenging and maddening existence; and yet, it was also the most exciting, lively, rewarding, and fun experience.

It was deadly serious because we constantly examined the most intense human issues: historical and personal tragedies; ethical dilemmas, philosophical complexities; theological mysteries; and scientific wonders. It was hard because it stretched you intellectually and emotionally, made you question everything and be changed by that knowledge. And it was difficult, because of the enormous workload and demands; assignments, exams, papers, presentations and seminars. I don’t know of another situation, except possibly the military during a war, where one could be tested so much.

Read on…

Short synopsis of ‘In Times of Distress’

On ‘My Books‘ page I have posted a short synopsis of the first book in the Winterbine Tetralogy. I am more than halfway through the writing and am confident of a release date in December 2019.

IN TIMES OF DISTRESS
Book One of the Winterbine Tetralogy.
Fr Jos van Engelen, a Dutch missionary priest stationed in New Guinea, is recalled to Holland in March 1940 to help the Superior-General in combating suspected subversion within the order. At the German invasion of Holland, he is drawn into dangerous covert operations against the Nazis which results in the execution of close collaborators. While in Amsterdam, he saves a young woman and her baby from being crushed in a stampede. It’s the start of a relationship with the young woman and a deadly tussle with her occultist husband. At the same time, he enters into a running conflict with the same subversive elements within his order. The conflict comes to a head during the Second Vatican Council, the result of which is his expulsion to Binawarra, a small country town in Australia. In a parallel plot, Anneke van Engelen, the priest’s niece, goes astray during the student radicalism of the 1960s with disastrous consequences. Fr van Engelen and Anneke van Engelen feature in THE CASTLE OF HEAVENLY BLISS, book three of the Winterbine tetralogy.


The ‘Goddess’, neo-paganism, the occult and Gnosticism are introduced as the themes of the Winterbine series. The ideological conflicts of the 1960s and 1970s form the background.
Publication December 2019
More information HERE.