One of the most consistent criticisms of my commentaries about the Judeo-Masonic farced called politics and governance in a world shaped by anti-Incarnational and Pelagian premises is that I am “unrealistic,” that I let the perfect be the enemy of the merely good. This criticism is not going to go any way time soon, which is one of the many reasons that my work is read by so few people.
Begging to differ with the critics, however, I have long stated that my political commentaries are grounded in the only kind of realism that matters, Catholic realism, as it is my intention to focus on root causes and to explain that we cannot permit ourselves to be agitated by the twists and turns of every development that occurs in world where most people do not give any thought to First and Last Things, a world where most people are quite content to believe that they can dress immodestly, speak profanely, prevent the conception of babies and spend their time watching television and/or listening to the “wisdom” (babbling) of various talking heads who see trees but who not see the forests of error in which they find themselves. Catholics, of all people, should know enough to avoid being agitated by the devil’s minions and thus into becoming cheerleaders for this or that set of naturalist “saviors” who believe that they can make the world a better place without the reform of individual lives in cooperation with the graces won for us by Our Blessed Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ during His Passion and Death on the wood of the Holy Cross and that flow into our souls through the loving hands of Our Lady, she who is the Mediatrix of All Graces. Naturalism leads to only more naturalism, and naturalism is the work of the devil to convince people that the world can indeed be made “better” without reforming their lives and without any thought to the Social Teaching that the Divine Saviour, Christ the King, entrusted exclusively to His true Church, the Catholic Church, for its infallible explication and eternal safekeeping.
The Old Pro-Life Fund-Raising Shell Game
In this regard, a well-meaning and even constitutionally sound proposal that is doomed to failure at the Congressional level is now making the rounds in various e-mail chains. The proposal involves getting a bill declaring preborn children to be declared persons under the terms of the Constitution’s Fourteenth Amendment, Article I:
All persons born or naturalized in the United States, and subject to the jurisdiction thereof, are citizens of the United States and of the State wherein they reside. No State shall make or enforce any law which shall abridge the privileges or immunities of citizens of the United States; nor shall any State deprive any person of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law; nor deny to any person within its jurisdiction the equal protection of the laws. (Constitution of the United States of America, Fourteenth Amendment, Article I.)
The effort, which was the support of United States Senator Rand Paul (R-Kentucky), to declare the preborn as persons under the terms of the provision above is indeed a noble one. However, there is one teeny-weeny, itsy-bitsy problem with believing that it will pass both Houses of the Congress of the United States of America: the pro-abortion, pro-perversity, pro-statist, pro-everything bad Nancy Patricia D’Alesandro Pelosi just happens to be the Speaker of the United States House of Representatives. Mrs. Pelosi (D-Sodom and Gommorah, California), is Speaker of the United States House of Representatives by virtue of the fact that the organized crime family of naturalism to which she belongs, that of the false opposite of the naturalist “left,” the Democratic Party, controls a majority of the seats by a margin of 235-197 (there is one independent and two vacancies at this time). One does have to be an “unrealistic” Catholic writer and former professor of political science with an earned doctorate in his field to see that the numbers are pretty foreboding. That is, there is no way that the following proposal will be passed by a majority of both Houses of the Congress of the United States of America:
For forty-six years, nine unelected men and women on the Supreme Court have played God with innocent human life.
The result has been a brutal holocaust that has claimed the lives of more than 62 million innocent and helpless unborn children in America.
In 1973, the U.S. Supreme Court’s Roe v. Wade ruling forced abortion-on-demand down our nation’s throat.
As a result, many pro-lifers resigned themselves to protecting a life here and there — passing laws which slightly regulate abortion in the most outrageous cases. Others tiptoed around the Supreme Court, hoping they wouldn’t be offended.
Life at Conception Act Follows the High Court’s Instructions by Defining When Life Begins
Now the time to grovel before the Supreme Court is over.
Working from what the Supreme Court ruled in Roe, pro-life lawmakers can pass a Life at Conception Act and end abortion by using the Constitution instead of amending it.
A simple majority vote in both houses of Congress is all that is needed to pass a Life at Conception Act as opposed to the two-thirds required to add a Constitutional amendment.
When the Supreme Court handed down its now-infamous Roe v. Wade decision, it did so based on a new, previously undefined “right of privacy” which it “discovered” in so-called “emanations” of “penumbrae” of the Constitution.
Of course, as constitutional law, it was a disaster. But never once did the Supreme Court declare abortion itself to be a Constitutional right.
Instead, the Supreme Court said:
“We need not resolve the difficult question of when life begins . . . the judiciary at this point in the development of man’s knowledge, is not in a position to speculate as to the answer.”
Life at Conception Act Would Dismantle Roe Using the Supreme Court’s Own Language
Then the High Court made a key admission:
“If this suggestion of personhood is established, the appellant’s case [i.e. “Roe” who sought the abortion], of course, collapses, for the fetus’ right to life is then guaranteed specifically by the [14th] Amendment.”
That’s exactly what a Life at Conception Act would do.
A Life at Conception Act changes the focus of the abortion debate. It takes the Supreme Court out of the equation and places responsibility squarely on the shoulders of the elected representatives who, unlike life-term judges, must respond to grass-roots pressure.
National Pro-Life Alliance members have led the fight to end abortion-on-demand by passing a Life at Conception Act. They have generated over 3 million petitions to Congress to date urging lawmakers to cosponsor and fight for passage of a Life at Conception Act.
Fight to Overturn Roe v. Wade Heats Up in Congress
Those continued efforts have led to ever-increasing support for a Life at Conception Act in Congress. In the 116th Session of Congress, Pro-life Members of Congress introduced Life at Conception Acts in both the House of Representatives and the U.S. Senate.
Thanks to the grass-roots lobbying of National Pro-Life Alliance members, the Life at Conception Act was introduced with an all-time record number of original cosponsors in the House of Representatives. And NPLA members will continue to hold the politicians accountable, pushing for an up or down vote on a Life at Conception Act.
Behind the Life at Conception Act bills in the U. House are Congressman Alex Mooney (R-WV) and Congressman Jody Hice (R-GA), alongside Senator Rand Paul in the U.S. Senate.
An up or down vote on the Life at Conception Act will put politicians on record either for or against ending abortion-on-demand.
Pro-lifers are urged to call (202) 224-3121 and insist that their Congressmen cosponsor S. 159/H.R. 616 and H.R. 305.
Life at Conception Act Enjoys Support From Prominent Lawmakers and Legal Experts
In the aftermath of Roe v. Wade, Congressman Henry Hyde, Senator Jesse Helms, and Notre Dame Law Professor Charles Rice all called for legislation to make clear that the Fourteenth Amendment’s protections apply to unborn children. President Ronald Reagan wrote in support of this “Human Life Bill” citing the author of the 14th Amendment as his authority.
Today the same method to overturn Roe is advocated by Princeton Law Professor Robert George, Judge Andrew Napolitano, the Republican Party platform and more than 150 current U.S. Congressmen and Senators. (Pro-Life Alliance: Life at Conception Act.)
One of the bill’s sponsors, Senator Rand Paul, has sent out an e-mail to his recipients that was forwarded to me by a reader of this site requesting them to sign a petition in support of the Life at Conception Act:
In 1973, the U.S. Supreme Court's Roe v. Wade ruling forced abortion-on-demand down our nation's throat.
In the past, many in the pro-life movement have felt limited to protecting a life here and there -- passing some limited law to slightly control abortion in the more outrageous cases.
But some pro-lifers always seem to tiptoe around the Supreme Court, hoping they won't be offended.
Now the time to grovel before the Supreme Court is over.
Working from what the Supreme Court ruled in Roe v. Wade, pro-life lawmakers can pass a Life at Conception Act and end abortion using the Constitution instead of amending it.
That is why it's so urgent you sign the petition to your Senators and Congressman that I will link to in a moment.
Signing the Life at Conception Act petition will help break through the opposition clinging to abortion-on-demand and ultimately win a vote on this life-saving bill to overturn Roe v. Wade.
A Life at Conception Act declares unborn children "persons" as defined by the 14th Amendment to the Constitution, entitled to legal protection.
This is the one thing the Supreme Court admitted in Roe v. Wade that would cause the case for legal abortion to "collapse."
When the Supreme Court handed down its now-infamous Roe v. Wade decision, it did so based on a new, previously undefined "right of privacy" which it "discovered" in so-called "emanations" of "penumbrae" of the Constitution.
Of course, as constitutional law, it was a disaster.
But never once did the Supreme Court declare abortion itself to be a constitutional right.
Instead, the Supreme Court said:
"We need not resolve the difficult question of when life begins... the judiciary at this point in the development of man's knowledge is not in a position to speculate as to the answer."
Then the High Court made a key admission:
"If this suggestion of personhood is established, the appellant's case [i.e., "Roe" who sought an abortion], of course, collapses, for the fetus' right to life is then guaranteed specifically by the [14th] Amendment."
The fact is, the 14th Amendment couldn't be clearer:
"... nor shall any state deprive any person of life, liberty or property, without due process of law, nor deny to any person within its jurisdiction the equal protection of the law."
Furthermore, the 14th Amendment says:
"Congress shall have power to enforce, by appropriate legislation, the provisions of this article."
That's exactly what a Life at Conception Act would do.
But this simple, logical and obviously right legislation will not become law without a fight.
And that's where your help is critical.
You see, it will be a tough fight, but I believe with your signed petition it is one we can win.
(E-mail sent by United States Senator Rand Paul.)
Where to begin?
First of all, let me point out yet again that words have meaning. The phrase “pro-life” is an empty one as most so-called “pro-life” legislators support the direct, intentional killing of the innocent preborn in the “hard cases,” meaning that, more accurately, they are simply less pro-abortion than those who believe that babies can be killed in the womb and at any time thereafter if the mother “chooses” to have him executed.
Secondly, most so-called “pro-life” politicians support the frustration of the natural end of the gift that God has given to men and women to propagate the species so as to provide Him with members of His Holy Church in this life and as members of the Church Triumphant after death. Contraception is a denial of the Sovereignty of God over the sanctity and fecundity of marriage, and its mentality of “family planning” is what led to increases in adultery, divorce, the feminization of poverty, the abandonment of mothers and children, abortion and, in more recent decades, the full panoply of vices associated with the perversities of the sin of Sodom, one of the four sins that cry out to Heaven for vengeance.
It was four years ago in June that Senate Majority Leader Addison Mitchell McConnell made it clear that the Supreme Court of the United States of America had “settled” the issue of “gay marriage” once and for all:
Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell says there's not much Congress can do in the wake of the ruling by the Supreme Court legalizing gay marriage.
In an interview Tuesday night on Kentucky television station WDRB, McConnell restated that he still holds to the traditional view of marriage.
"I’ve always felt that marriage is between one man and one woman and the Supreme Court has held otherwise. That’s the law of the land," the Kentucky Republican said.
When he was asked if there is anything Congress can do, he answered: "I don’t think so. I think the courts have pretty well spoken."
However, McConnell said he is now concerned about "the potential problems with regard to religious liberty."
There are number of institutions, which in practicing their religion, may run up against this," which he predicts will result "in a lot of additional litigation, as this decision is weighed against the strongly held religious beliefs of a number of Americans."
The Senate leader said that lawmakers will be looking to see "if religious liberty needs to be enhanced by statute."
Following the Supreme Court decisions on gay marriage and Obamacare, Texas Sen. Ted Cruz said that he is proposing a constitutional amendmentsubjecting Supreme Court justices "to periodic judicial-retention elections."
But McConnell said "it isn't going to pass ... we've only done that 27 times in the history of our country." (Mitch McConnell: Gay Marriage Is ' Law of the Land.)
“The law of the land.”
Well, there another was profile in courage from the imperious Kentuckian.
One can be “personally opposed” to the abomination of “same-sex” marriage while being “reconciled” to the irreversible nature of its institutionalization as a matter of fact and as a matter of a constitutional “right” that was “found” and applied by Associate Justices Anthony McLeod Kennedy, Ruth Bader Ginsburg, Stephen Breyer, Sonia Sotomayor, and Elena Kagan.
Isn’t this the same stunt that many Catholics in the Democratic Party have been using since January 22, 1973, to support the legal fact of the chemical and surgical execution of the innocent preborn despite their alleged “personal opposition”?
Well, again, let me point the some cold and quite unforgiving fact that nothing of the nature of the Life at Conception Act is going to get to a floor vote in the United States House of Representatives, and it is also arguably the case that the Majority Leader of the United States Senate, Addison Mitchell McConnell (R-Kentucky), would never permit such a bill to get a floor vote except to provide members of his conference with an cost-effective vote to burnish their “pro-life” credentials with the comfort of knowing that the bill could not be enacted into law because of the Democratic Party’s majority in the lower chamber. McConnell, a consummate Washington swamp creature who knows how to count beans, knows that two members of his conference, Senators Susan Collins (R-Maine) and Lisa Murkowski (R-Alaska), are pro-baby-killing in all circumstances, although it is possible that United State Senators Joseph Donnelly (D-Indiana) and Joseph Manchin (D-West Virginia) might vote for such a bill. However, it is also possible that self-anointed heir of the late John Sidney McCain III as the supposed “conscience” of the Republican Party, Willard Mitt Romney, who supported baby-killing when running for and serving in office in the Commonwealth of Massachusetts before becoming “pro-life” again when he started running for the Republican Presidential nomination in 2007, might object to such a bill as overstepping the alleged boundaries of “settled law.”
By the way, didn’t the Republicans promise to overturn ObamaCare?
Sure, they did. However, when push came to shove the aforementioned United States Senator John Sidney McCain III (R-Arizona) voted to save the very concept that he had campaigned against when he ran so miserably for the presidency against then United States Senator Barack Hussein Obama/Barry Soetoro in 2008.
In short, careerist Republicans aid and abet pro-aborts in the other camp of naturalism because they fear to “offend” “moderate” voters in suburban areas and in “swing” states. Yup, one cannot offend “moderate” voters, but one can sure offend God and His immutable laws with full impunity under the cover of the civil law.
What is curious about Senator Paul’s belief that the Life at Conception Act has a ghost of a chance of passage is that he told an audience last month that the leaders of his part did not want to defund Planned Barrenhood because of what doing so might cost them with voters, thereby “shocking” his audience:
WASHINGTON, D.C., July 2, 2019 (LifeSiteNews) – Pro-life Senator Rand Paul shocked listeners when he revealed that GOP Congressional leadership chose not to include a measure to defund Planned Parenthood in a spending bill because “we might win.”
Speaking to the Faith and Freedom Coalition’s “Road to Majority” conference in the nation’s capital, the Kentucky Republican explained that despite strides in the public’s attitudes against abortion, Republican lawmakers aren’t following the public’s lead.
“We still lose in the legislation,” observed Paul. “We lose because the people who come to you and give you lip service and say, ‘Oh I’m pro-life, I’m pro-life,’ and then they don’t seem to vote that way.”
Paul shared an example:
Last year, I tried to attach to a spending bill a prohibition to have any money spent by Planned Parenthood.
You know what happened? [GOP leadership] sat me down and one of the senior Republican senators said, “We cannot have the vote today.”
I said, “Why?”
He said, “We might win.”
Paul’s disclosure elicited gasps from the crowd of mostly Evangelical Christians.
He said that he then turned to the senior senator and asked, “What does this mean? Does this mean that passing your spending bill, getting the Democrats to vote for your spending bill, is more important than life?”
“Then he just smiled,” said Paul.
“You have Republicans that are more concerned with spending money than protecting the unborn,” he concluded.
Paul, a licensed opthamologist, prefaced his remarks by explaining that during his medical training he refused to participate in abortions, adding, “I would never commit an abortion.”
The Bluegrass State senator assured the crowd that despite Congress’s failure to defund Planned Parenthood, “We are winning hearts and minds.”
“Less and less physicians want to be associated with the grisly practice,” said Paul.
“The repulsive idea of seeing Planned Parenthood selling body parts on video struck home for people,” he added. “We are winning sometimes the persuasive argument that this is an awful, degrading, and disgusting thing for anybody to be involved with.”
President Donald Trump kicked off the conference the previous day with a pro-life meessage: “We’re building a society that values the limitless potential of every person. And we’re strengthening the bonds that tie us together in the wondrous tapestry of creation.”
The president called the crowd’s attention to pro-life activist Katie Shaw, who has Down syndrome.
“Our nation is uplifted by incredible Americans like Katie who fight for the dignity of all humanity,” he said. (Rand Paul Says GOP Leadership Won't Permit Vote on Defunding Planned Barrenhood "Because We Might Win".)
Have I ever told you that it is all about the “money, the money, the money”?
Well, let me tell you if I have not done so before: “It’s all about the money, the money, the money.”
What is there to be shocked about at this late date?
As I have noted so many times in the past, most “pro-life” voters don’t warn to learn anything, and this is why they are content to push boulders up hills that inevitably fall back down upon them, thus personifying the mythological Sisyphus himself. Careerist Republicans care about winning elections, retaining and augmenting their own political power so that they leverage it in the private sector for themselves and/or their family members.
Yes, it’s all about the money, the money, the money.
Ah, But Hasn’t Planned Barrenhood Withdrawn from the Federal “Family Planning” Program”?
Planned Barrenhood has voluntarily withdrawn from the Federal government's "family planning program," and this is a good thing as they have always had more than enough funds to do their bloody work without the support of Federal taxpayer dollars. It is, though, only a matter of time before this is changed when the next adherent of the unapologetically pro-death organized crime family of the naturalist “left” wins the presidency and has the support of both Houses of the United States Congress.
While President Donald John Trump’s administration’s efforts to do an end run around the intransigence of Republicans to defund Planned Barrenhood is very commendable, one must also remember, quite soberly, I hasten to add, that the Federal government is still funding “family planning programs” of those “community-based” “healthcare” facilities that do not engage in the surgical killing of babies in their mothers’ wombs. The bottom line, therefore, is this: Planned Barrenhood will continue to kill babies both chemically and surgically courtesy of the corporations that bankroll them and thus kill off their future employees and customers, and the Federal government will still fund the chemical assassination of the preborn by means of contraceptive pills and devices.
Do not fall for these naturalist sleight of hands.
It is not a victory for Christ the King when governments fund programs to frustrate the natural end of marriage and are thus complicit in the killing of innocent children by chemical means even though they do not kill surgically.
Having established the simple and quite unforgiving fact that the commendable Life at Conception Act will never pass the Congress of the United States of America even if Republicans retain control of the Senate and regain control of the House of Representatives on Tuesday, November 3, 2020, there will be some who will persist in the belief that there is some way for an bill that will be passed by the Congress of the United States of America can make its way to the Supreme Court of the United States of America. This is pure fantasy, but I will entertain the fantasy and put it in the context of personhood bills that are being passed by a few state legislatures, which is where the real legislative efforts to overturn Roe v. Wade and Doe v. Bolton, January 22, 1973, are being undertaken.
As I have noted on this site, there is no guarantee that the Chief Justice of the Supreme Court of the United States of America, Opus Dei’s own John Glover Roberts, a consummate institutionalist, would vote to overturn a “precedent” even said precedent is in violation of the binding precepts of the Divine Positive Law and the Natural Law, especially since pro-death advocates will argue that the text of the protections accorded by the Fourteenth Amendment extend to those “persons born or naturalized in the United States, and subject to the jurisdiction thereof,” not to those who are unborn. Although pro-death advocates are not known for a strict adherence to the text of the Constitution, they are also positivists who employ whatever arguments they need to win in the courts.
In this instance, however, such an argument, even if made disingenuously by people who have contempt for the just laws of God and man, could carry the day as John Glover Roberts, who has twice voted to save an unconstitutional governmental “healthcare” system by twisting himself into all manner of jurisprudential pretzels, could weasel out of a difficult situation by saying that the only way to confer citizenship upon the preborn is to amend the Constitution. Anyone who is grounded in an actual grasp of the facts knows that such an amendment would pass by a two-thirds majority of both Houses of the United States Congress nor be ratified by thirty-eight state legislatures to become part of the Constitution. The late Mrs. Nellie Gray, the founder of the March for Life, tried this in the 1970s and 1980s when there were enough Republicans and Democrats who had called themselves “pro-life” in Congress. However, the “best” that could be done was the fatally flawed Hatch-Eagleton Amendment, which would have given the states the ability to decide whether to permit, restrict or prohibit the surgical assassination of innocent preborn children. This was flawed because it conceded to institutions of human governance the power to loose men from the binding precepts of the Fifth Commandment, a power that belongs to no mortal creature, whether acting individually or together with others in the aforesaid institutions of civil governance. God is a majority of One.
Please, come back down to earth. This is a different country now than it was in the years after the Supreme Court decision in the cases of Roe v. Wade and Doe v. Bolton, January 22, 1973. I was only twenty-one years old at the time, having commenced my graduate studies days before at the University of Notre Dame in Notre Dame, Indiana. Most of the people who are my age now, sixty-seven and three-quarters, are dead. Even many who were in their thirties, forties and fifties forty-six years ago are dead, replaced by generations of Americans who have come to accept chemical and surgical baby-killing as a matter of their own “constitutional rights.” Sentimentality reigns supreme, not the binding precepts of the Divine Positive Law and the Natural Law.
Again, just by the way, whatever did happen with all of the agitation for the paramount, no-exceptions human life amendment that many of us supported in the aftermath of Roe v. Wade and Doe v. Bolton?
No such amendment ever reached the floor of either house of the Congress of the United States of America, and, as noted above, the morally flawed “Hatch-Eagleton Amendment,” which would have given each state the “right” to “decide” whether to “permit,” restrict or limit the surgical execution of the innocent preborn in their mothers’ wombs, failed in a floor vote in the United States Senate on July 28, 1983, by a vote of 49 for and fifty against.
Just as an aside, of course, the United States Senate was controlled by the Republican Party at this time. Nineteen pro-abort Republican senators Robert Packwood (R-Oregon, Lincoln Chafee, R-Rhode Island), William Cohen (R-Maine), Barry Goldwater (R-Arizona), Slade Gorton (R-Washington, John Heinz (R-Pennsylvania), Nancy Kassebaum (R-Kansas), Charles Mathias (R-Maryland), Robert Packwood, R-Oregon), Charles Percy (R-Illinois), William Roth (R-Delaware, Warren Rudman (R-New Hampshire), Alan Simpson, Arlen Specter (R-Wyoming) James Stafford (R-Vermont), Ted Stevens, (R-Alaska), John Tower (R-Texas), Malcolm Wallop, (R-Wyoming), Lowell Weicker (R-Connecticut), Peter Wilson (R-California).
Just an aside, you understand. (Senator Jesse Helms, R-NC, voted present as he was the sole senator to understand that the Hatch-Eagleton amendment would have resulted in a constitutionally granted, rather judicially imposed, “right” for state legislatures to enact and maintain pro-killing laws. Helms, a thirty-third degree Freemason, mind you, was only one of three Republicans who voted against the confirmation of the nefarious Ruth Bader Ginsburg on August 4, 1993, the Feast of Saint Dominic de Guzman, O.P. The other two were Catholics, Robert Smith of New Hampshire and Donald Nickles of Oklahoma.)
The Careerist Republicans’ Fifth Column: The National-Not-So-Right-to-Life Committee
What makes the situation even more difficult, humanly speaking, is the simple fact that the Republicans’ fifth column in the so-called “pro-life movement, the National Not-So-Right-Life Committee, works actively against all manner of bills (e.g., banning abortions after the detection of a preborn baby’s heartbeat, personhood bills, bans on almost all abortions) introduced into state legislatures that are designed to curb or entirely end surgical baby-killing within their jurisdictions. The useless appendage of the Republican Party’s chief legal counsel, James Bopp, has long opposed these legislative efforts on the ground that they are doomed to failure in the Supreme Court of the United States of America. This may or may not be so, but such bills, unlike the proposed Life at Conception that is supported by United States Senator Rand Paul, actually do get passed by state legislatures and signed by state governors and are designed to get to the Supreme Court of the United States of America. What matters to the “National Right to Life Committee,” however, is doing nothing that will harm Republican chances in the next election.
Here is a report of Bopp’s latest stroke of legal genius:
NASHVILLE, August 19, 2019 (LifeSiteNews) – As Tennessee lawmakers debate their latest proposal to end abortion in the state, America’s most prominent “pro-life” lobbying group is condemning the measure as “irrational” and “foolish.”
Like other states, Tennessee has been considering legislation to ban abortion once a fetal heartbeat can be detected. Earlier this summer it was amended into an even bolder proposal: banning virtually all abortions by defining “viability” to mean “that a male human sperm has penetrated the zona pellucida of the female ovum, which includes, but is not limited to, serial human chorionic gonadotropin (HCG) determinations or the detection of a heartbeat in an unborn child.”
Starting effectively at conception, the bill would make committing an abortion a Class C felony and revoke a violator’s medical license in all cases except to prevent the “death of the pregnant woman or to prevent serious risk of substantial and irreversible impairment of a major bodily function of the pregnant woman.”
However, during packed legislative hearings earlier this month, National Right to Life Committee (NRLC) general counsel James Bopp testified against the bill, the Nashville Tennessean and Nashville Public Radio report.
It’s not a matter of whether these judges are pro-life,” Bopp argued. “It’s the reality that they have an obligation to follow precedent. And there’s simply no question that pre-viability prohibitions are unconstitutional [...] We have precedent we cannot avoid with a clever legal argument."
He admonished the bill’s viability provision as “irrational” language that “makes us look foolish. And I do not want to look foolish."
Instead, Bopp argued the way to end abortion was to “build a willing court” by re-electing President Donald Trump and returning a Republican majority to the Senate next year, the Tennessee Tribune reports. Instead, Tennessee Right to Life (TRTL) supports trigger legislation that wouldn’t take effect unless and until some other legal battle eventually overturns Roe v. Wade.
Faulkner University law professor Adam MacLeod disagreed with Bopp, telling lawmakers the bill could be supported under the Ninth Amendment to the U.S. Constitution, which guarantees rights not spelled out in the constitution yet recognized in the American common-law tradition, as a preborn right to life was long before Roe.
Republican state Sen. Janice Bowling argued that waiting for the Supreme Court to overturn Roe wasn’t good enough, because under the “current approach we are taking, a lot of infants are going to die and a lot of people are getting impatient.”
One potential pitfall of placing pro-life hopes with future justices is that most national pro-life groups tend to endorse Republican judicial nominees without confirming how they’d rule on Roe, yielding a current Supreme Court where Justice Clarence Thomas is the only confirmed anti-Roe vote (though most pro-lifers are confident that Justice Samuel Alito would rule against Roe as well). The other three right-leaning justices, particularly John Roberts and Brett Kavanaugh, have given mixed signals on their likelihood of overturning Roe.
Without specifically naming Bopp, Family Action Council of Tennessee (FACT) president David Fowler wrote that it’s “foolish” to make “prideful assertions about what the rule-of-law-composition of the Court will be at the time any law enacted now finally reaches that Court,” and noted that “judicial vote prognostications” throughout the history of the abortion debate have often been wrong.
“There is a rule of law conflict, because in every area of the law—criminal, tort, and property—the state has the authority to recognize the right-bearing capacity of unborn persons, just not when it comes to one thing, abortion,” he argued. “That arbitrary distinction as to when a known living human being is a person is an offense to the rule of law. If a Republican legislature isn’t willing to make the Court decide this issue on the basis of the rule of law because it doesn’t think the Court cares about the rule of law either, then heaven help us; we are lawless.”
NRLC has faced criticism in the past for allegedly putting the priorities of the Republican establishment ahead of the pro-life cause, from opposing federal heartbeat legislation and putting its weight behind policies unrelated to abortion, to pressuring lawmakers and affiliates to support rape and incest exceptions, and even pro-abortion Republicans such as Sen. Lisa Murkowski (R-AK).
The Tennessee bill faces an uphill battle to passage, as a spokesman for Republican Lt. Gov. Randy McNally says he still has “reservations” the bill’s likelihood of provoking a losing legal battle. (National Right to Life Testifies Against Tennesse Bill to Ban All Abortions.)
James Bopp is worried that viability bills will make him look “foolish”?
There has been only one thing that the National Right to Life Committee has been interested in since its inception: serving the interest of career Republicans.
It has been thus from the very beginning as, assisted by the strategy of the then “Monsignor” James T. McHugh of the then named United States Catholic Conference's Family Life Bureau in the late-1960s and early-1970s, the so-called National Right to Committee, which became a secular, nondenominational offshoot of the then-named National Conference of Catholic Bishops/United States Catholic Conference (now called the “United States Conference of Catholic Bishops”) was founded with what became the “gold standard” of what it is for a politician to be deemed “pro-life” opposition to all abortions except in case where it is alleged that a mother’s life is endangered.
That is, the National Right to Life Committee, guided by McHugh, the master advocate of explicit classroom instruction in matters pertaining to the Sixth and Ninth Commandemnts (Origins of Classroom Instruction in Matters of Purity in Catholic Schools and The McHugh Chronicles), adopted a position from its very inception that took no stand against contraception and actually supported the nonexistent "right" of mothers to kill their innocent preborn children in the event that their own lives are said to be in jeopardy from carrying their babies to birth. What is thus considered to be the "leader" of the "pro-life" movement in the United States of America has supported the direct, intentional surgical abortion in cases where it is alleged that a mother's life is in jeopardy as a matter of principle, not as a matter of what they would consider to be legislative expediency, from is very beginnings.
No one should give a dime to this fraudulent organization or its various affiliated groups. No one should consider its "voter scorecards" of any use at all because, quite conveniently, the bought and paid for toadies of the Republican establishment do not “score” legislative votes on any piece of legislation or legislative action, including judicial appointments, that would cause one of their "pro-life" champions in the Republican Party to have a lower "score." This has made it possible for all manner of Republicans in the United States Senate to "preserve" their "record" even though they have put out-and-out pro-aborts on the Federal bench (Sandra Day O'Connor, Anthony Kennedy, David Souter, Ruth Bader Ginsburg, Stephen Breyer, Sonya Sotomayor, and Elena Kagan on the Supreme Court of the United States of America) or to serve in various offices (such as George Walker Bush appointees Colin Powell, Condoleeza Rice, Christine Todd Whitman, Alberto Gonzales, Michael Mukasey, Donald Rumsfeld, Tom Ridge and, among others, Michael Chertoff).
Most so-called "pro-life" Americans, including Catholics, do not think in terms of absolute truth. They do not want to think. They do not follow the details of current events or remember the little that they read, which is why I will append below for yet another time a brief summary of the actual anti-life, anti-family record of the "conservative" statist and war monger named George Walker Bush, whose record will always look bad to Christ the King, Who is Truth Incarnate, no matter how "good" it might look to facile minds who have permitted themselves to fall into the trap of seeing the world through the eyes of the false opposites of the naturalist "left" and the naturalist "right."
Alas, even those Catholics who are pro-life, no matter where they fall across the ecclesiastical divide, do not understand or accept these facts. They are willing to accept "crumb" from phony pro-life politicians in the false belief that we will "get somewhere" by means of the political process. We will not. Many of these truly good people, a lot of whom have worked their entire lives to defend the inviolability of preborn human life by volunteering at crisis pregnancy centers and by praying Our Lady's Most Holy Rosary in front of abortuaries and by speaking out against this crime that cries out to Heaven for vengeance, are looking for naturalistic solutions to the abortion genocide precisely because they have never been taught by the scions of the counterfeit church of conciliarism that the proximate cause for social problems in our world today is the overthrow of the Social Reign of Christ the King by the Protestant Revolution and institutionalized by the combined forces of Judeo-Masonry.
No matter how difficult or “hopeless” it may appear to us mere mortals, true Catholic realism demands that we seek to plant the seeds for the restoration of this Social Kingship, starting with the enthronement of our homes to the Most Sacred Heart of Jesus and to the Sorrowful and Immaculate Heart of Mary.
The Faith, The Faith, The Faith
Most Catholics have never even heard of, no less read, this beautiful and moving summary of Catholic truth found in Pope Leo XIII's Tametsi Futura Prospicientibus, November 1, 1900, that has been oft-quoted on this site:
We have but too much evidence of the value and result of a morality divorced from divine faith. How is it that, in spite of all the zeal for the welfare of the masses, nations are in such straits and even distress, and that the evil is daily on the increase? We are told that society is quite able to help itself; that it can flourish without the assistance of Christianity, and attain its end by its own unaided efforts. Public administrators prefer a purely secular system of government. All traces of the religion of our forefathers are daily disappearing from political life and administration. What blindness! Once the idea of the authority of God as the Judge of right and wrong is forgotten, law must necessarily lose its primary authority and justice must perish: and these are the two most powerful and most necessary bonds of society. Similarly, once the hope and expectation of eternal happiness is taken away, temporal goods will be greedily sought after. Every man will strive to secure the largest share for himself. Hence arise envy, jealousy, hatred. The consequences are conspiracy, anarchy, nihilism. There is neither peace abroad nor security at home. Public life is stained with crime. (Pope Leo XIII, Tametsi Futura Prospicientibus, November 1, 1900.)
Having made war against the Social Reign of Christ King by its embrace of "religious liberty" and "healthy secularity--and blasphemed Him by means of the Protestant and Judeo-Masonic Novus Ordo worship service, the counterfeit church of conciliarism has actually fed into the social evils it seeks to oppose as it robs Catholics yet attached to its structures of the means by which they can see the world clearly through the eyes of the true Faith and thus come to a recognition that we must be uncompromisingly Catholic in thought, word and speech at a times and in all circumstances without any exception whatsoever. The conciliarists have robbed Catholics of the ability to look that the following statement of Pope Saint Pius X and to recognize the truth contained therein:
By separating fraternity from Christian charity thus understood, Democracy, far from being a progress, would mean a disastrous step backwards for civilization. If, as We desire with all Our heart, the highest possible peak of well being for society and its members is to be attained through fraternity or, as it is also called, universal solidarity, all minds must be united in the knowledge of Truth, all wills united in morality, and all hearts in the love of God and His Son Jesus Christ. But this union is attainable only by Catholic charity, and that is why Catholic charity alone can lead the people in the march of progress towards the ideal civilization.. . .
Here we have, founded by Catholics, an inter-denominational association that is to work for the reform of civilization, an undertaking which is above all religious in character; for there is no true civilization without a moral civilization, and no true moral civilization without the true religion: it is a proven truth, a historical fact. (Pope Saint Pius X, Notre Charge Apostolique, August 15, 1910.)
Our true popes have also warned us that men and their nations must fall into the abyss when they permit religious “liberty” and “freedom of conscience” and then become active participants in the injurious babbling of naturalism:
This shameful font of indifferentism gives rise to that absurd and erroneous proposition which claims that liberty of conscience must be maintained for everyone. It spreads ruin in sacred and civil affairs, though some repeat over and over again with the greatest impudence that some advantage accrues to religion from it. “But the death of the soul is worse than freedom of error,” as Augustine was wont to say. When all restraints are removed by which men are kept on the narrow path of truth, their nature, which is already inclined to evil, propels them to ruin. Then truly “the bottomless pit” is open from which John saw smoke ascending which obscured the sun, and out of which locusts flew forth to devastate the earth. Thence comes transformation of minds, corruption of youths, contempt of sacred things and holy laws — in other words, a pestilence more deadly to the state than any other. Experience shows, even from earliest times, that cities renowned for wealth, dominion, and glory perished as a result of this single evil, namely immoderate freedom of opinion, license of free speech, and desire for novelty. (Pope Gregory XVI, Mirari Vos, August 15, 1832.)
For you well know, venerable brethren, that at this time men are found not a few who, applying to civil society the impious and absurd principle of “naturalism,” as they call it, dare to teach that “the best constitution of public society and (also) civil progress altogether require that human society be conducted and governed without regard being had to religion any more than if it did not exist; or, at least, without any distinction being made between the true religion and false ones.” And, against the doctrine of Scripture, of the Church, and of the Holy Fathers, they do not hesitate to assert that “that is the best condition of civil society, in which no duty is recognized, as attached to the civil power, of restraining by enacted penalties, offenders against the Catholic religion, except so far as public peace may require.” From which totally false idea of social government they do not fear to foster that erroneous opinion, most fatal in its effects on the Catholic Church and the salvation of souls, called by Our Predecessor, Gregory XVI, an “insanity,” viz., that “liberty of conscience and worship is each man’s personal right, which ought to be legally proclaimed and asserted in every rightly constituted society; and that a right resides in the citizens to an absolute liberty, which should be restrained by no authority whether ecclesiastical or civil, whereby they may be able openly and publicly to manifest and declare any of their ideas whatever, either by word of mouth, by the press, or in any other way.” But, while they rashly affirm this, they do not think and consider that they are preaching “liberty of perdition;” and that “if human arguments are always allowed free room for discussion, there will never be wanting men who will dare to resist truth, and to trust in the flowing speech of human wisdom; whereas we know, from the very teaching of our Lord Jesus Christ, how carefully Christian faith and wisdom should avoid this most injurious babbling.”
And, since where religion has been removed from civil society, and the doctrine and authority of divine revelation repudiated, the genuine notion itself of justice and human right is darkened and lost, and the place of true justice and legitimate right is supplied by material force, thence it appears why it is that some, utterly neglecting and disregarding the surest principles of sound reason, dare to proclaim that “the people’s will, manifested by what is called public opinion or in some other way, constitutes a supreme law, free from all divine and human control; and that in the political order accomplished facts, from the very circumstance that they are accomplished, have the force of right.” But who, does not see and clearly perceive that human society, when set loose from the bonds of religion and true justice, can have, in truth, no other end than the purpose of obtaining and amassing wealth, and that (society under such circumstances) follows no other law in its actions, except the unchastened desire of ministering to its own pleasure and interests?” (Pope Pius IX, Quanta Cura, December 8, 1864.)
It is essential that Catholics come to recognize that the remote cause of all problems, whether personal or social, is Original Sin and that the proximate cause for our social problems today is Modernity's warfare against the Incarnation and thus against the Social Reign of Christ the King, a warfare that has been aided and abetted by conciliarism's warfare against the necessity of restoring Christendom as the foundation, although never an absolute guarantor, of course, of personal and social order.
Men will never seek to restore full legal protection to the innocent preborn if they persist in lives of wanton blasphemy, religious indifferentism, moral relativism and outright paganism. Men cannot offend God in matters of the First, Second, Third and Fourth Commandments and expect that others will observe the binding precepts of the Fifth, Sixth and Ninth Commandments, especially when the supposed “pope” and most his “bishops” are brazenly open and serial violators of each of the Ten Commandments, deconstruct the plain words of Sacred Scripture and the Church Fathers while treating Sacred Tradition as nothing other than a set of prescriptions that had been “distorted” by the Scholasticism of Saint Thomas Aquinas and are thus in need of modification to meet the alleged “needs” of “modern” man.
The battle to end the surgical killing of babies will fail no matter how hard even well-meaning legislators and activists attempt to push various proposals. Moreover, the chemical assassination of the preborn would continue unabated even if Roe v. Wade itself wound up being reversed by the Supreme Court of the United States of America, and nothing would be done to stop the killing of embryonic human beings by means of in vitro fertilization and of the stem-cell research that is derived from them. Perhaps even more to point is the simple fact that babies are being killed immediately after birth and, in many instances this country and around the world, innocent human beings at any stage after birth are subject to—and are in fact being killed by—“medical professionals” by means of “brain death,” “palliative care,” “doctor assisted suicide, the withdrawal of food and water, and a variety of other means.
This is all but the inexorable result of what must happen to men and their nations when “liberty” is used as a cloak for malice after they give no thought to Christ the King and the just Judgment that he will render on their immortal souls.
Pope Leo XIII noted in Libertas Praestantissimum, June 20, 1888, that Holy Mother Church will accommodate herself to the concrete realities in which her children find themselves in the modern civil state in order to continue her work of sanctification and instruction. Holy Mother Church, however, never concedesas a matter of principle the false premises of the modern civil state as she seeks to exhort her children to know their obligations to pray and to work for the conversion of their nations to the true Faith, outside of which there is no salvation and without which there can be no true social order:
But, to judge aright, we must acknowledge that, the more a State is driven to tolerate evil, the further is it from perfection; and that the tolerance of evil which is dictated by political prudence should be strictly confined to the limits which its justifying cause, the public welfare, requires. Wherefore, if such tolerance would be injurious to the public welfare, and entail greater evils on the State, it would not be lawful; for in such case the motive of good is wanting. And although in the extraordinary condition of these times the Church usually acquiesces in certain modern liberties, not because she prefers them in themselves, but because she judges it expedient to permit them, she would in happier times exercise her own liberty; and, by persuasion, exhortation, and entreaty would endeavor, as she is bound, to fulfill the duty assigned to her by God of providing for the eternal salvation of mankind. One thing, however, remains always true -- that the liberty which is claimed for all to do all things is not, as We have often said, of itself desirable, inasmuch as it is contrary to reason that error and truth should have equal rights.
And as to tolerance, it is surprising how far removed from the equity and prudence of the Church are those who profess what is called liberalism. For, in allowing that boundless license of which We have spoken, they exceed all limits, and end at last by making no apparent distinction between truth and error, honesty and dishonesty. And because the Church, the pillar and ground of truth, and the unerring teacher of morals, is forced utterly to reprobate and condemn tolerance of such an abandoned and criminal character, they calumniate her as being wanting in patience and gentleness, and thus fail to see that, in so doing, they impute to her as a fault what is in reality a matter for commendation. But, in spite of all this show of tolerance, it very often happens that, while they profess themselves ready to lavish liberty on all in the greatest profusion, they are utterly intolerant toward the Catholic Church, by refusing to allow her the liberty of being herself free. (Pope Leo XIII, Libertas Praestantissimum, June 20, 1888.)
This is not a matter of ethereal speculation having nothing to with the real lives of human beings. Not at all. The heresy of religious liberty, which is at the heart of the counterfeit church of conciliarism, devastates souls. The belief that those who belong to false religions have a "civil right" to propagate themselves and that their false beliefs can contribute to the betterment of society make it impossible to exclude those false religions from making their presence felt everywhere in society, especially in "educational" institutions, where the tender souls of the young become ready prey to false ideas that are propagandized by charismatic professors. This is true in the United States of America and elsewhere in the allegedly "free" world of "democratic republics.
The unjust decisions of the Supreme Court of the United States of America and the unjust laws passed by Congress and state legislatures are just a logical result of what happens when men believe that “religious freedom” can result in a “discovery of truth.” It is no accident that the “truth” of “religious freedom” was “discovered by the bishops present at the “Second” Vatican Council, and it is this “discovery that helped to create the “perfect storm,” so to speak, for the coalescence of the forces of Antichrist to march triumphantly to our present day, and those coalesced forces have much on their “do list” before their time expires. Much more, ultimately including the dispossession of “dissenters” from their homes, the confiscation of their property and bank accounts, the forfeiting of social benefits such as Social Security and Medicare, their imprisonment, “enhanced interrogation” during incarceration, and of course, execution if these “undesirables” do not “reform.”
Oh, you don’t think that this is possible?
What do you think happened from 67 A.D. to 313 A.D. (and beyond in some places) in the Roman Empire?
What do you think happened during the Protestant Revolution in England and Ireland?
What do you think happened during the French Revolution?
What do you think happened during the Bolshevik Revolution and Maoist Revolutions and their aftermath?
What do you think happened in Mexico in the early-Twentieth Century?
Unlike the Catholic Church, which makes concessions to the realities of the concrete cirumstances in which her children live without endorsing the errors of the moment, the counterfeit church of conciliarism concedes the licitness of the false principles, which its lords consider to be "good" in and of themselves. This is one of the reasons that chemical and surgical baby-killing under cover of law continues unabated and that the agenda of perversion will become more and more institutionalized over the course of time. One cannot fight moral evils with false principles.
The counterfeit church of conciliarism rejects the truth that Catholicism is the one and only foundation of personal and social order. Its "conservative" 'bishops" in the United States of America have been content, at least up until now, to ally themselves with phony "pro-life" politicians in the organized agency of naturalism known as the Republican Party, most of whom support surgical baby-killing in some instances and the assassination of the innocent preborn by chemical means in all instances, thus falling into the same naturalist trap as their predecessors in the Catholic Church who served as lackeys for the likes of Woodrow Wilson and Franklin Delano Roosevelt. Their “red and green” “pope,” however, is seeing to it that this alliance is at an end once and for all.
Today is the Feast of Saint Bartholomew, who was skinned alive for the Holy Faith. Blessed Jacobus de Voragine, O.P., provided an account, appended below, of this Apostle’s holy life and martyrdom in The Golden Legend. We should pray to Bartholomew to have but a fraction of his apostolic zeal for souls and his desire all manner of horrible tortures to advance the cause of honor and glory of the Most Holy Trinity and thus of the Holy Faith and the good of souls. And although not on the general calendar of the Roman Rite, Holy Mother Church does permit a commemoration today of Our Lady under title of the Health of the Sick, a devotion that we should have to ask her intercession for heal our bodies from all ailments and, more importantly, to heal our souls from the sicknesses that make us less capable of shining forth the bright light of her Divine Son, Christ the King in a world that sick unto its demise from the afflictions of Modernity and Modernism.
The only true path of out the abyss is through the Immaculate Heart of Mary, which is why it is important to use the final days of this month of August to renew our own consecrations to Our Lord through His Most Blessed Mother’s Sorrowful and Immaculate Heart so that we will offer up all that we must suffer here below to advance the cause of the Triumph of that same Immaculate Heart of Mary and thus of the restoration of a true pope on the Throne of Saint Peter.
That is the only kind of realism that matters!
Viva Cristo Rey! Vivat Christus Rex!
Our Lady of the Rosary, pray for us!
Saint Joseph, pray for us.
Saints Peter and Paul, pray for us.
Saint John the Baptist, pray for us.
Saint John the Evangelist, pray for us.
Saint Michael the Archangel, pray for us.
Saint Gabriel the Archangel, pray for us.
Saint Raphael the Archangel, pray for us.
Saints Joachim and Anne, pray for us.
Saints Caspar, Melchior, and Balthasar, pray for us.
Saint Bartholomew, pray for us.
The Life of Saint Bartholomew, From The Golden Legend
Bartholomew is expounded the son of abovehanging the waters, or son of overhanging the sea. He is said of bar, that is as much to say as son, and tholos, which is as much to say as sovereignty, and of moys, that is to say water. And hereof is said Bartholomew, as a son hanging over the waters. That is of God, which enhanceth the minds of doctors on high, for to shed and bespring beneath the waters of doctrine. And it is a name of Syriac and not of Hebrew. And the first three suspendings that he had, ought to be noted: He was suspended or taken up from the love of the world, and he was suspended, that is to say ententive, in heavenly love, and he was suspended, that is to say wrapped, in the grace and in the aid of God. Not by his merits his life shone, but by the aid of God. Of the second came the deepness of his wisdom, of which deepness of wisdom Denis saith, in his mystical theology: The divine Bartholomew, of whom is much divinity and right little, and that the gospel is broad and great, and also it is short. And after the entent of S. Denis, Bartholomew will show that all things may be affirmed and showed of God under one consideration, and by another consideration may be more properly denied.
Of S. Bartholomew the Apostle.
S. Bartholomew, the apostle, went into India, which is in the end of the world. And therein he entered into a temple where an idol was which was named Astaroth, and he, as a pilgrim, abode there. In that idol dwelt a fiend that said that he could heal all manner sicknesses, but he lied, for he could not make them whole, but might better them but for a while. And the temple was full of sick people, and could have no answer of that idol, wherefore they went in to another city whereas another idol was worshipped named Berith, and they demanded him wherefore Astaroth gave to them no answer. And Berith said: Your god is bound with chains of fire that he neither dare draw breath ne speak after that Bartholomew, the apostle of God, entered into the temple. And they said to him: Who is that Bartholomew? And the devil said: He is the friend of God Almighty, and he is come into this province for to avoid all the gods of India. And then they said: Tell us some tokens and signs that we may know him and find him. And the devil said to them: He hath his hairs black and crisp, his skin white, eyes great, his nostrils even and straipht, his beard long and hoar a little, and of a straight and seemly stature. He is clad in a white coat, and a white mantle, which in every corner hath gems of purple and precious stones therein. And it is sith twenty-six years that his clothes never waxed old ne foul. He prayeth and worshippeth God on his knees a hundred times a day, and a hundred times by night. The angels go with him, which never suffer him to be weary ne to be an hungered, he is always of like semblant, glad and joyous. He seeth all things tofore, he knoweth all things, he speaketh all manner languages, and understandeth them, and he knoweth well what I say to you. And when ye seek him, if he will he may show himself to you, and if him list not, not shall ye find him. And I pray you, when ye find him, that ye pray him that he come not hither, that his angels do not to me as they have done to my fellow. Then they went and sought him diligently and busily two days, and found him not
On a day, one that was beset with a devil cried, and said: Apostle of God, Bartholomew, thy prayers burn me. And the apostle said: Hold thou thy peace and come thence. And anon he was delivered. And when Polemius, king of that region, heard this thing, which had a daughter lunatic, he sent to the apostle, praying that he would come to him and heal his daughter. And when the apostle was come to him and saw that she was bound with chains, and bit all them that went to her, he commanded to unbind her. And the ministers durst not go to her. And he said: I hold the devil fast bound that was in her, and therefore be not afeard; and then anon she was unbound and delivered. And then would have presented to the apostle camels charged with gold and silver and precious stones, but he could not be found in no manner. And on the morrow following, the apostle appeared to the king, alone in his chamber, and said to him: Wherefore soughtest thou me yesterday with gold and silver and precious stones? Those things be necessary to them that covet things worldly, but I desire no things terrien ne carnal. Then S. Bartholomew began to say many things, and inform the king of our redemption, and among other things how Jesu Christ vanquished the devil by marvellous and convenable puissance, justice, and wisdom. For it was convenable that he that overcame the son made of the earth, that was Adam, while he was yet a virgin, should be overcome of the son of the virgin. He overcame him then mightily, when he threw him puissantly out of his lordship which had thrown out by force our forefather. And thus, as he that overcometh some tyrant, sendeth his fellows tofore for to set up his sign over all, and to cast out tyrants, in like wise Jesu Christ sent his messengers over all for to take away the honour and the worshipping of the devil righteously. For it is right that he that vanquished man by eating, and held him, that he should be overcome by a man fasting, and hold man no longer. For it is rightful that he which by the art of the devil was despised, that by the art of Jesu Christ he should be vanquished. And like as the falcon taketh the bird, right so took he Jesu Christ in desert because he fasted, and would assay if he had hunger; and if he had hunger, that he might have deceived him by meat, and if he had no hunger, then knew he well without doubt that he was God. But he might not know him, for he had hunger, and consented nothing to him ne to his temptations.
And when he had preached the sacraments of the faith, he said to the king that, if he would receive baptism, he would show him his god bounden with chains. And the day following, when the bishops sacrificed within the palace of the king, the devils began to cry and say: Cease, ye cursed wretches, to do sacrifice to us, lest ye suffer worse than I that am bounden with chains of fire by the angels of Jesu Christ, whom the Jews crucified and supposed to have brought to death. Which death, that is our queen, he hath imprisoned, and hath bound our prince in chains of fire. And anon then they set cords on the image for to pull down and overthrow the idol, but they might not. The apostle then commanded the devil that he should issue and go out and break the idol all to pieces, and he issued out and destroyed and brake all the idols of the temple. And anon the apostle made his prayer, saying: O God of Abraham, God of Isaac, and God of Jacob, which hast given to us such power that we enlumine the blind, and cleanse the lepers, I desire and require that this multitude might be healed, and they all answered, Amen. And forthwith all the sick people were cured and healed. And then the apostle did do hallow and dedicate that temple, and commanded the devil to go in to the desert. Then the angel of our Lord appeared there, and flew round about the temple, and ensigned and graved with his finger the sign of the cross in four corners of the temple, saying: Our Lord saith this: Like as I have you cured and made you clean of all your sickness, so let this temple be made clean of all filth and ordure. but I shall show him of all filth and ordure. But I shall show him to you that dwelleth therein tofore, to whom the apostle hath commanded to go in to desert. And doubt ye not to see him, but make in your forehead such a sign as I have graven in these stones. And then he showed to them an Ethiopian more black than thunder, the face sharp, the beard long, his hairs hanging unto his feet, his eyes flaming as hot fire, and cast out sparkles of fire, and casting out of his mouth flames of sulphur, and his hands bound with chains of fire behind his back. And then the angel said to him: Because that thou hast heard that the apostle hath commanded, and hast broken all the idols of the temple, I shall unbind thee; go in to such a place whereas dwelleth no man, and be thou there unto the day of judgment. And when he was unbound he went his way with a great braying and howling, and the angel of our Lord mounted up to heaven in the sight of them all. And then was the king baptized, with his wife and his children and all his people, and left his realm and was made disciple of the apostle.
Then all the bishops of the idols assembled them together and went to Astrages the king, and brother to Polemius, and complained of the loss of their gods and of the destruction of their temples, and of the conversion of his brother made by art magic. Astrages was wroth and sent a thousand men armed to take the apostle, and when he was brought tofore him, the king said to him: Art thou not he that hast perverted my brother? And the apostle answered to him: I have not perverted him, but I have converted him; and the king said to him: Like as thou hast made my brother forsake his god and believe in thy God, so shall I make thee forsake thy God, and thou shalt sacrifice to my god. And the apostle said : I have bound the god that thy brother adored, and showed him bound, and constrained him to break his false image, and if thou mayst do so to my God, thou mayst well draw me to thine idol, and if not, I shall all to-break thy gods, and then believe thou in my God. And as he said these words, it was told the king that his god Baldach was overthrown and all to-broken, and when the king heard that, he brake and all to-rent his purple in which he was clad, and commanded that the apostle should be beaten with staves, and that he should be flayed quick, and so it was done. Then the christians took away the body and buried it honourably. Then the king Astrages and the bishops of the temples were ravished with fiends and died, and the king Polemius was ordained bishop, and accomplished the oflfice of a bishop twenty-two years much louably, and after that rested in peace full of virtues.
There be divers opinions of the manner of his passion. For the blessed Dorotheus saith that he was crucified, and saith also: Bartholomew preached to men of India, and delivered to them the gospel after Matthew in their proper tongue. He died in Alban, a city of great Armenia, crucified the head downward. S. Theoderus saith that he was flayed, and it is read in many books that he was beheaded only. And this contrariety may be assoiled in this manner, that some say that he was crucified and was taken down ere he died, and for to have greater torment he was flayed and at the last beheaded.
In the year of our Lord three hundred and thirty-one, Saracens assailed Sicily, and destroyed the isle of Lipari whereas the body of S. Bartholomew lieth, and brake up the sepulchre and threw the bones hither and thither. And it is said that his body came in such wise from India thither into that isle. When the paynims saw that this body and his sepulchre were greatly honoured for the miracles that befell, they had thereof great despite, and laid them in a tomb of lead, and threw them into the sea, and by the will of God they came into this isle. And when the Saracens had departed and thrown the bones here and there, and were departed thence, the apostle appeared to a monk and said to him: Arise up, and go and gather together my bones that be departed. And he said to him: By what reason shall I gather together thy bones, and what honour ought we to do to them, when thou sufferest us to be destroyed? And the apostle said to him: Our Lord hath spared this people here a long while by my merits, but for their sins that they have sinned, which cry vengeance unto heaven, I have not con get pardon ne forgiveness for them. And then the monk said: How shall I among so many bones find thine? And the apostle said to him: Thou shalt gather them by night, and them that thou shalt find shining thou shalt take up. And the monk went, and found them all as he had said, and took them up, and brought them with him in to a ship, and sailed with them to Benevento, which is chief city of Apulia, and thus were they transported thither. And it is said now that they be at Rome, howbeit they of Benevento say they have the body.
There was a woman that brought a vessel full of oil for to put in the lamp of S. Bartholomew, and how well she inclined the vessel for to pour out the oil, there would none issue out, how well she touched with her finger the oil clear. And then one cried and said: I trow this oil be not agreeable to the apostle that it should be in his lamp, wherefore they put it in another lamp and it issued anon.
When that the emperor Frederick destroyed Benevento, and he had commanded that all the churches that there should be destroyed, and enforced them to bear away the goods from that city into another place, there was a man which found men all white shining, and him seemed that they spake together of some secret thing, and he marvelled strongly who they were and demanded them, and then one of them answered and said: This is Bartholomew, the apostle, with the other saints which had churches in this city, that speak and ordain together in what manner and by what pain this emperor should be justified, that hath cast them out of their tabernacles. And they have now confirmed among them by firm sentence that he, without tarrying, shall go to the judgment of God for to answer thereupon. And anon the emperor died an evil death.
It is in a book read of the miracles of saints that, a certain master hallowed solemnly the feast of S. Bartholomew, and the devil in the form of a maid appeared to this master that preached. And when he saw her, he bade her to come and dine with him, and when they were set at the table she enforced her much for to draw him to her love. And then S. Bartholomew came to the gate and prayed that he might come in for the love of S. Bartholomew, and she would not, but sent him bread, and he would none take, but prayed the master by his message that he should say what thing that he supposed was most proper in a man. And he answered: To laugh. And the maid said: Nay, it is sin in which a man is conceived, born and liveth in sin. And S. Bartholomew answered that he had well said, but she had more profoundly answered. And the pilgrim demanded after at the master, where the place was contaimng the space of a foot where had God made greatest miracle. And he said, the sign of the cross, in which God had made many miracles. And she said: Nay, it is the head of a man, in which the little world is. And the apostle allowed the sentence of that one and of that other, and then he demanded the third time: How far it was from the sovereign siege or seat in heaven unto the lowest and deepest place of hell. And the master said that he wist not; and she said: I know it well, for I fell down from that one to that other, and it behoveth that I show it to thee. And the devil fell down into hell with a great bruit and howling, and then they sent for the pilgrim, and he was vanished and gone and away and they could not find him. And in like wise nigh according to this is read of S. Andrew.
The blessed Ambrose saith thus in the preface that he made of this apostle in abridging his legend: Jesu Christ, thou hast vouchsafed to show to thy disciples, preaching, many things of thy divine Trinity in marvellous manner, and thy majesty, among whom thou hast sent the blessed Bartholomew honour by right great prerogative in to a far country. And how be it that he was all far from human conversation, nevertheless he deserved by the increasing of his predications to mark and think in thy sign the beginning of that people. Ah! by what louings is the marvellous apostle to be honoured. And when the hearts of the people of his neighbours sufficed not to him to receive his seed, he through-pierced like in fleeing in to the last countries of the lands of India, and entered in to the temple where there was great company of sick people without number, and made the devil so mute that he gat no remembrance to them that adored him, and the maid that was lunatic by torment of the devil he did unbind and delivered her all whole to her father. Oh, how great was this miracle of holiness, when he made the fiend, enemy to the lineage human, to break and destroy his own idol, and to bring it to nought. Oh, how worthy is he to be numbered to the heavenly company to whom the angel appeared, to praise the faith of him by his miracles, and came from the sovereign hall and showed to all the people the devil chained, and right foul, and the sign of the cross impressed in the stone bearing health. And the king and the queen were baptized, with the people of their cities. And at the last the tyrant brother of Polemius, new in faith by the relation of the bishops of the temple, made the blessed apostle, constant in the faith, to be beaten, flayed, and receive right foul death. And as he denounced the mischief of death, he had and bare with him, in to the glory of heaven, victory of his glorious strife.
And the blessed Theodore, abbot and noble doctor, saith of this apostle in this manner among other things. The blessed apostle Bartholomew preached first in Licaonia, and after in India, and at the last in Alban, a city of great Armenia, and there he was first flayed and afterward his head smitten off, and there he was buried. And when he was sent of our Lord to preach, as I suppose, he heard how our Lord said to him: Go, my disciple, to preach, void out of this country, and go fight and be capax of perils. I have first accomplished and finished the works of my father, and am first witness, fill thou the vessel that is necessary and follow thy master, love thy lord, give thy blood for his blood, and thy flesh for his flesh, and suffer that which he had suffered, let thine armour be debonairty in thy sweatings, and suffer sweetly among wicked people and be patient among them that perish thee. And the apostle recoiled not, but as a true servant and obeissant to his master went forth joying, and as a light of God illumining in darkness the work of holy church, like as the blessed S. Austin witnesseth in his book, that, like a tiller of Jesu Christ, he profiteth in spiritual tilling. S. Peter the apostle taught the nations, but S. Bartholomew did great miracles. Peter was crucified the head downward, and Bartholomew was flayed quick, and had his head smitten off. And they twain increased greatly the church by the gifts of the Holy Ghost. And right as a harp giveth a right sweet sound of many strings, in like wise all the apostles gave sweet melody of the unity divine, and were established by the king of kings. And they departed among them all the world, and the place of Armenia was the place of Bartholomew, that is from Ejulath unto Gabaoth. There thou mayst see him, with the plough of his tongue, ear the fields unreasonable, sowing in the deepness of the heart the word of the faith, and in planting the vines of our Lord and trees of paradise. And to every each setting medicinally the remedies of the passions, rooting out pernicious thorns, cutting down trees of felony, and setting about hedges of doctrine. But what reward yielded the tyrants to their curate? They gave to him dishonour for honour, cursing for benediction, pains for gifts, tribulation for rest, and right bitter death for restful life. And sith that he had suffered many torments, he was of them discoriate and flayed quick, and died not, and yet for all that he had them not in despite that slew him, but admonished them by miracles, and taught them by demonstrances, that did him harm. But there was nothing that might refrain their bestial thoughts, ne withdraw them from harm. What did they afterwards? They enforced them against the holy body, and the malades and sick men refused their mediciner and healer, the city refused him that enlumined their blindness, governed them that were in peril, and gave life to them that were dead. And how cast they him out? Certainly, they threw the body into the sea in a chest of lead, and that chest came from the region of Armenia with the chests of four other martyrs, for they did also miracles and were thrown with him into the sea. And the four went before a great space of the sea, and did service to the apostles like as servants in a manner, so far that they came into the parts of Sicily in an isle that is named Lipari, like as it was showed to a bishop of Ostia which then was present. And these right rich treasures came to a right poor woman. And these right precious margarets came to one not noble, the bright shining light came to one right heavy. And then the other four came in to other lands, and left the holy apostle in that isle, and he left the other behind him. And that one which was named Papian went into a city of Sicily, and he sent another, named Lucian, into the city of Messina. And the other twain were sent into the land of Calabria, S. Gregory into the city of Columna, and Achate into a city named Chale, where yet at this day they shine by their merits. And then was the body of the apostle received with hymns, louings, and candles honourably, and there was made and builded a fair church in the honour of him. And the mountain of Vulcan is nigh to that isle, and was to it much grievous because it received fire, the which mountain was withdrawn by the merits of this holy saint from that isle seven miles, without to be seen of any body, and was suspended toward the sea. And yet appeareth it at this day to them that see it, as it were a figure of fire fleeing away. Now then, therefore, I salute thee, Bartholomew, blessed of blessed saints, which art the shining light of holy church, fisher of fishes reasonable, hurter of the devil which hurted the world by his theft. Enjoy thee, sun of the world, enlumining all earthly things, mouth of God, fiery tongue pronouncing wisdom, fountain springing goodly, full of health, which hallowest the sea by thy goings and ways not removable, which makest the earth red with thy blood, which repairest in heaviness, shining in the middle of the divine company clear in the resplendishour of glory. And enjoy thee in the gladness of joy insatiable. Amen. And this is that Theodore saith of him. (Blessed Jacobus de Voragine, The Golden Legend, The Life of Saint Bartholomew.)