AntiSemitism

Christians Coping Under Fascism in WWII: Warnings for Christians Under Trump

You need a strong moral compass to do what is right.  Like Trump, Mussolini did not have a strong, he did not even have a weak moral compass, his compass had no morals at all.  Shortly before the start of World War II Mussolini started looking up to Hitler, Mussolini visited Berlin, Hitler visited Rome, and Mussolini started to value the values of Nazi Germany over the values of the Catholic Church.
Starting in 1938, the Fascist government under Mussolini started to implement many of the same anti-Semitic race laws that had earlier been passed in Nazi Germany.  In the years before 1938 the Catholic Church prospered in its partnership with Mussolini.  In the remaining years of Mussolini’s rule these relations were more and more strained.  The Pope had started hearing disturbing reports from his churches in Germany and across Europe, disturbing reports on the fate of the Jews and the disabled and dissenters, priests, and believers.
Pope Pius XI started to have regrets about his compromises with Mussolini, Pope Pius XI was elderly and in poor health, Pope Pius XI started to worry about his salvation. […]

AntiSemitism

Vatican II Decree on Freedom of Religion, Embracing Democracy, Rejecting Fascism

The Church Fathers of Vatican II believed that the Catholic guarantee of Religious Liberty was crucial for regaining the respect of many believers and the modern world.  History had evolved so that the Catholic Church was not on the side of truth regarding religious liberty.  From ancient times the Catholic Church was supported first by the Roman emperors starting with Constantine, and then the royalty of medieval Europe, but the absolute monarchies had all disappeared, giving way to dictators and republics, some of which were constitutional monarchies.  The Jacobism of the French Revolution and its grandchild communism were the enemies of the church, and the church supported fascism to combat communism.  World War II totally discredited fascism, now the Catholic Church saw democracy as the bulwark opposing communism, and religious liberty was a cornerstone for democracy. […]

Cynic Philosophers

Diogenes and the Greek Cynic Philosophers

Diogenes Laertius tells us the Cynics were only interested in ethics, and unlike the other philosophical schools, they had no interest in logic and physics, much like the later Roman Stoics.  They had no interest in general education or literature, their only concern was how to live a life of virtue.  The Cynics “lived frugally, eating only for nourishment, wearing only a clock, despising wealth, fame, and royal birth.”  Some ate only vegetables, some drank only water, some lived in tubs in the marketplace, like Diogenes of Sinope.  The Cynics believed that “virtue can be taught, and when acquired cannot be lost.” […]

Facism

Spanish Civil War and the Catholic Church

In hindsight, the Republicans were doomed to lose the Civil War.  The Great Stalinist Purge Trials that decimated the officer corps and political and bureaucratic class of Russia occurred at the same time in history, being a lackey of Stalin was valued far more highly than professional competence.  This attitude also affected only intensified the inflexible ideology of the far-left in the Spanish Civil War, battles were valued more for their propaganda victories than for their actual military victories.  Strategic retreats were ideologically suspect, once you committed troops to a battle you never retreated, you just kept committing more troops until your armies were either victorious or all dead or captured.  And after all battles the dead always leave their guns and trucks and tanks behind. […]

Greek Philosophy

Diogenese on the Greek Stoic, Zeno of Citium

Zeno speculates that “God is a living being, immortal, rational, perfect in happiness, immune to anything evil, exercising forethought for the cosmos and all it contains.  But he is not of human shape.  He is the craftsman of all things, both generally and in that particular part of him that pervades everything, and which is called by many names in accordance with all his various powers.” […]

Facism

Christians Under Hitler’s German Nazi Regime

How could most Christians either tolerate or support the totalitarian Nazi regime of Hitler?  We cannot help but ask that question because we see bulging eyes of the skeletal concentration camp victims looking up in those black and white photographs, but we must realize that nobody in the prewar years could have predicted that the concentration camps would come to define Nazism.  In the prewar years many saw a reawakened national German pride and family values after the humiliation imposed by the Treaty of Versailles that ended World War I. […]

AntiSemitism

Mussolini’s Fascist Regime and the Catholic Church

Although Mussolini’s totalitarian regime was brutal, and although Mussolini was not a practicing Catholic himself, he did cooperate with the Pope and the Catholic Church.  Mussolini did not enact Nazi style anti-Semitic race laws until he fell under the spell of Hitler after 1938.  Until then, the Catholics in the pews were not morally forced to choose between obeying the church and the state. […]

Vatican II

Yves Congar – Meaning of Tradition, Blog 2

By abandoning diatribes, by abandoning the proclaiming of anathemas against those who disagree with Catholic doctrine, the post-Vatican II Catholic Church now explicitly believes that both Catholics and Protestants can both attain Salvation through the grace of God and His Son Jesus Christ.  By opening a dialogue, the Church teaches we can learn from both Catholic and Protestant theologies, and this also infers that this encourages study, effort, and dedication.  In the spirit of Vatican II, we should strive to view these as differences of emphasis rather than as differences that divide. […]