SAINT MARY OF THE CROSS

Mary MacKillop was an Australian Catholic nun of the 1800s and 1900s.

To Australians of all ages and backgrounds she is a heroine. They love her. But do they really understand her?

Saint Mary MacKillop -- she gave her life to teaching poor children and founded an order of teaching nuns.

Saint Mary MacKillop -- she loved children, she loved justice and she loved God.

Saint Mary MacKillop -- so relevant to today’s world. There is much we can learn from her.

Let’s be sure that it is from the REAL Mary MacKillop that we learn.

Meet the REAL Mary MacKillop. Get a MacKillop’s-eye view of our world. Keep visiting this blog.



18
Aug

RELIGION, REASON AND SCIENCE: how to not get confused about them.

by Arnold Jago in Common Sense, Faith, God, Science, Truth

Human beings are, potentially at least, rational beings.
It’s a work in progress for us, not open to inanimate creatures.
That fact we can know with certitude.
Upshots of that big certainty are some derivative certainties – the reality of God, the immortal soul of man and the actuality of Natural Moral Law.
These are rational certainties – not just probabilities or hypotheses.
Science and revealed religion are in a different league – both offer probabilities, sometimes useful, but never 100 per cent assurance.
What price the idea that science is the one way to truth?
It’s self-contradictory wishful thinking.
Well, can’t the same be said of revealed religion?
Perhaps there’s a difference – due to God being necessarily real and rational – which the objects addressed by science aren’t.
Could that make one’s religious experience trustworthy to a degree that scientific knowledge can’t be?

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11
Aug

EUTHANASIA: does it achieve what its proponents claim for it?

The Victorian government plans to legalise intentional killing or assisted suicide of people with intolerable symptoms expected to die within 12 months….
The 12 months life-expectancy criterion will mean a premature death based on somebody’s guesstimate.
A similar law in the US state of Oregon — described by the government as an example of safeguards working — is not working very well.
For example, Oregon victims often do not, in practice, have intolerable pain.
In 2016, nearly half (48%) of those whose death resulted from taking prescribed lethal medication gave “being a burden” on family and carers as a motive for requesting death.
We don’t really want that here.
At least we shouldn’t want it.
(http://public.health.oregon.gov/ProviderPartnerResources/EvaluationResearc
h/DeathwithDignityAct/Documents/year19.pdf)

7
Aug

AUSTRALIAN MEDICAL ASSOCIATION CREDIBILITY SELF-DESTRUCTS: ideology trumps facts in AMA statement on same-sex “marriage”.

The Australian Medical Association (AMA) has issued a 2017 “position statement” claiming, amongst other things, that:
(1) “LGTBIQ-identifying individuals” having the highest rates of suicidality of any population group is “a consequence of discrimination and stigmatization…rather than a symptom of the orientation itself.”
(2) There is research highlighting that health and psychosocial outcomes for children raised in same-sex parented families are “on a par with, and in some aspects comparatively better than, children raised in heterosexual parented families.”
Ex-AMA head, Prof Kerryn Phelps, commented, “I don’t think the religious, cultural right-wing conservatives now have anywhere to hide….”
Conservatives probably don’t want to hide.
What they might like is to get some media space to demonstrate that:
Claim (1) relies on one only piece of 14-year old research which is based on statistically-unsound methodology and ignores other more recent research suggesting the opposite.
Claim (2) likewise is based on selective samples of research while ignoring other peer-reviewed research evidence whci shows that “the longer social scientists study the question, the more evidence of harm is found….”
An 18-page “Medical Critique” of the AMA Position Statement prepared by a groupf doctors headed by Dr Chris Middleton, former AMA State President, can be accessed on the internet.
https://critiqueama.files.wordpress.com/2017/07/medical-critique-of-the-ama-position-statement-on-marriage-equality.pdf

30
Jul

A HISTORY LESSON: religion, midlife crisises and violence

In the year 622AD, the Prophet Muhammad, a 52-year old preacher of peace, was gaining very few converts among his community in Mecca.
Should he just go on preaching until he got too old — or until perhaps irate unbelieving enemies killed him?
No. He changed tactics, moving north to Medina – now as a warlord – raiding, enforcing conversions, killing men, women and children.
Tactics still in use today….
In the year 29AD, Jesus Christ, aged 30-odd, a moderately successful preacher in rural Galilee, took his disciples south to confront his opposition in Jerusalem.
No violence – still simply preaching God’s “kingdom” and condemning hypocrisy.
These methods soon led to his death on a cross.
Which of these two teachers was strong and which was weak?
Today’s professing Christians seem weak.
Not so much because they fight badly, but because they compromise with secularism and hypocrisy….
Which includes the use of violence in ways incompatible with the gospel of their Founder.

24
Jul

GENDER DYSPHORIA: existent, non-existent or existent-but-vanishingly-rare? is it the exception that over-rides every rule?

Special clinics for children with suspected “gender dysphoria” are getting busier.
Protagonists of the “Safe Schools” program say one child in 25 is affected. Many are submitted to hormone treatments etc.
Official figures (published 2013) suggest that, in fact, less than one in 40 children have “dysphoric” symptoms, even on a temporary basis.
And that most of them, if left alone, spontaneously lose their symptoms.
Long-term dysphoria persisting into adulthood affects no more than 14 persons per million population.
None of this proves anything much except that fanatics – including gender-fluidity fanatics – don’t mind bending statistics.
This whole issue is obviously not one of statistics.
It’s a philosophical and ethical problem.
Is there, or is there not, such a thing as Natural Moral Law?
If there is, then we should abide by it.
(source: DSM-5)

21
Jul

“ASSISTED DYING” TO BE LEGAL IN VICTORIA? thinking about the un-thinkable.

The Victorian government plans legalising “assisted dying” for the terminally ill who request it.
They call the new laws “conservative” because they include 68 “safeguards” to prevent abuses.
Such arguments have emotional appeal but are not based on reason.
The traditional Christian teaching should be our guide:
“An act or omission which, of itself or by intention, causes death in order to eliminate suffering constitutes a murder gravely contrary to the dignity of the human person and to the respect due to the living God, his Creator….
“Discontinuing medical procedures that are burdensome, dangerous, extraordinary, or disproportionate to the expected outcome can be legitimate; it is the refusal of “over-zealous” treatment. Here one does not will to cause death; one’s inability to impede it is merely accepted….
“The use of painkillers to alleviate the sufferings of the dying, even at the risk of shortening their days, can be morally in conformity with human dignity if death is not willed as either an end or a means, but only foreseen and tolerated as inevitable….”
(Catholic Catechism, paragraphs 2277-2279)
Caring for the dying and disabled can be expensive in terms of money, time, love and compassion.
Do we care enough to make the effort – refusing to resort to intentional killing?