Wednesday, May 21, 2008

"In the valley of the shadow of death..."

...The words of the Psalmist came into my head today as I read the headlines. The psalmist promises that, with the Lord as our shepherd, we need not fear...

Today our country walked into the valley of the shadow of death. Parliament has voted that a family does not consist of a mother and father who transmit life to their children. It banned any statement that a family needs a father, and agreed that two lesbians who want a child can decide to have one using artificial means. It rejected calls to tighten up the abortion law even after hearing the descriptions of how children are dismembered as small perfectly-formed babies at 22 weeks. It passed legislation which treats a human person as something that can be used for a utilitarian purpose.

If some one, in whatever civilisation replaces ours, writes about these days, those who passed this legislation will be treated with savagery. The evil that will result from what Parliament has now permitted is clear enough even at this stage - but it will generate more evil, and terrible things will be done.

No civilisation has ever survived, let alone prospered, when it failed to understand that human beings are at the heart of it all, that human existence has a value. Nor can any civilisation work that is based on a lie: and everyone knows that it is a lie to pretend that human life is not generated through the union of a man and a woman, and that this creates a family.

Today the sun shone, and the London evening paper had headlines about whether the latest Royal wedding should have been featured in "Hello!" magazine, and the BBC ran a football match as its main story. And the nation which once helped to take the Christian Gospel to distant lands, and stood against neighbouring tyranny in the face of terrible odds, and produced some of the world's most glorious literature, closed its face to its own future...

15 comments:

Anonymous said...

Kyrie eleison.

Mrs Pea said...

I know. I know. My little boy wondered why I was crying and turned off the radio this morning. I had really hoped for better.

Sharon said...

Joanna, don't you think that the time has come for all people who are apalled by the downward spiral of GB to take to the streets with their concerns?

For how long will God's hand be stayed?

I am reminded of Psalm 2

10 Now, O kings, understand,
take warning, rulers of the earth;
11 serve the Lord with awe
and trembling, pay him your homage
12 lest he be angry and you perish;
for suddenly his anger will blaze.

Anonymous said...

Thank you for your blog Joanna-even if it seems no one is listening-it is still important to say it.

Renata said...

I agree that these are sad times, but we must always 'pray, hope and don't worry' as Padre Pio used to remind us.

I also agree with 'anonymous' who, quite rightly says that it is always important to speak up, even on a blog.

Best wishes

Renata

miss book said...

Britain R.I.P.

Jackie Parkes said...

God can do the impossible....& will...

Philip said...

I felt sick as I listened and watched the various news programmes. I can't even begin to understand how these intelligent men and women can have lost touch with basic morality.

I guess, as our nation walks through the valley of the shadow of death, we must remember that the Lord is there to guide us. The Good Shepherd knows each of His sheep, by name, even those who have never been born; He will lead them all through the valley to new and verdant pastures.

Elizabeth said...

Hear, hear.

Alyson said...

I thought that at last the 'decision makers' would take the bull by the horns and redeem themselves,fight their way out of the straightjackets of political correctness, take this 'last' chance given to them in order to show that they have read and understood the years & years of research presented to them...

My hopes and dreams for their chance to share their enlightenment, were dashed by their unanimous outcry against life.

Their vote negates years of social, psychological and medical research as irrelevant.

They are blatantly ignoring educators as misguided in their obsevations, assessments and recommendations...regardless of the thousands of schools(primary and secondary) filled with substantial numbers of depressed,insecure, socially inept children, who fail to achieve their potential or live a life of productivity. These children are followed closely by their depressed,needy single mothers longing for the embrace of the forgotten and outmoded extended family, FAMILY? What's this?


The billboard advert being proposed by their decisions, is that 'LIFE IS NO IMPORTANT UNLESS IT SERVES A SELFISH PURPOSE.'

Say no more.

Malcolm McLean said...

Alyson, I think you've hit on something important.

The debate on social responsibility - single mothers, criminals, soon to be gays and pornographers and other such types - is swinging from liberalism to rigour. I think the catalyst is actually gay marriage, something that the public is unready to accept, and tends to discredit liberalism.

However it is a huge mistake to think that the swing means the debate is going our way. There is a truth in liberalism, which is that the irresponsible should be treated with compassion. That gets perverted to a right to be irresponsible.

However I think that what might happens is that we lose the truth in liberalism without losing the perversion. Abortion, saviour siblings, artificial insemination, etc is defended as part of a right to do what you want - ie to be irresponsible. However there will be no compassion when the ultimate results turn out to be negative, because that places burdens on other people, and society is sick of those costs.

PJMULVEY said...

As an American who travels on business to the UK frequently, I am amazed at the cultural and religious amnesia that I encounter in a land abounding with Christian names and symbols. As a believing Catholic, I am often challenged by my British colleagues to explain the reasons for my beliefs (asked in a condescending tone as if I believed in fairies!). I have come to believe that we are truly living in a post-Christian age and that the coming culmination of the political correctness movement will be persecution in the 21st century since ortodox Christianity will be viewed as anti-social, racist and sexist....mortal sins in the eyes of secularist culture. The time is coming when being a neo-recusant will once again be an opportunity for martyrdom.

Ponte Sisto said...

PJMulvey has, in my experience of life in modern Britain, hit the nail on the head.

The fact that we have an Established Church merely masks how anti-Christian our country has become.

You (Auntie Joanna) presented a beautiful programme about Walsingham on EWTN this week. It's about time "we" stopped being ashamed of the Faith, placed a statue of OLW in every church, oratory and Catholic home (Domestic Church) and prayed daily the "Prayer for England" before our Lady's image.

Paul wrote in his letter to the Ephesians that life is a battle against the powers of darkness. The darkness is still as dark, but the light of many Christians is now failing for fear of being called a bigot, a "homophobe" or just plain mad. Loyalty to the truth: It's what God thinks, that matters.

A couple of days ago, I was talking to a couple of ladies and the topic of prostitution in Portsmouth cropped up. Immediately, one lady said that the (RC) bishop of Portsmouth supported brothels. He did suggest (foolishly, in my opinion) that they might be the lesser of two evils; but see how easily confused people become when Christian leaders employ situation ethics, rather the Gospel as the arbiter of truth. We've had over forty years of this now, and the end result is the Britain described by PJMulvey.

Anonymous said...

Saw you on Channel 4 news today. Saddened and ashamed on behalf of my parents who brought up 10 RC children. To use your faith to try and deny some of the poorest people in the world the opportunity to make choices that might help them and their children live long and healthy lives, is truely shocking. Shame on you - though I know there's no getting through to the likes of you. Just makes me angry to hear you spouting your dangerous nonsense - when you know that people may DIE as a result of your work. See you in hell?

Joanna Bogle said...

That last comment was sent to this Blog today, in March 2009, several months after this posting in May 2008. The author had just seen me on a News programme were I was supporting the H. Father and the Church's teaching on why sexual union should be reserved for marriage alone and why distribution of condoms will not resolve the tragic spread of AIDS. If you read the comment of Anonymous you will get some flavour of the sort of line that was being taken by the presenter of the programme and the commentator on the news bulletin that preceded it. This may also give you some idea of what it's like speaking up as a Catholic on TV programmes today.