The end is near! Of the year! And next year will be the 500th anniversary of the Protestant Reformation.

Next year there are numerous events planned to commemorate Martin Luther’s posting of his Ninety Five Thesis on the Catholic Church in Wittenburg, Germany, the Protestant Reformation was sparked and much was changed in Europe and the rest of the world, by the preaching of the Word of God. It should be an exciting year and hopefully, some attention might be given to the Canadian Luther, and the one who was also called the Martin Luther of America, Charles Chiniquy!

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Questions about Chiniquy

Earlier this year, I was asked a question by a gentleman living on the US east coast. He brought up the fact that a letter by William Herndon had surfaced and wondered about what Lincoln’s former law partner had to say in it about the 16th President’s beliefs, http://www.chron.com/life/houston-belief/article/Long-lost-letter-sheds-light-on-Lincoln-s-1685061.php.
I explained that the Raab Collection letter he had brought up was dated 1866 and that I had contacted Steven Raab, who had kindly furnished me with some further information. Mr. Raab detailed that the letter was dated February 4, 1866, and was written to Edward McPherson, Clerk of the U.S. House of Representatives. He also sent a commentary and the text of the letter. I found that what I received was slightly confusing though, I would have preferred to have had a photocopy of the letter itself.
I explained that, in the letter, Herndon is quoted, as I understand it, saying that Lincoln “is or was a Theist & a Rationalist, denying all extraordinary – supernatural inspiration or revelation.”
What he says and when he says it seems a bit strange. I said in my volume, in Appendix 2, page 244, ‘In addition, even after Lincoln’s death, Herndon’s opinion of his partner’s views on spiritual things apparently shifted over time. In 1866 he declared, “Some men think that Mr. Lincoln did scoff and sneer at the Bible. This is not so; he had no scoff–nor sneer, for even a sacred error; he had charity for all and everything.”
Three years later though, he told Lamon “Mr. Lincoln was an infidel–a Deist–wrote a book…in favor of Infidelity &c.–that sometimes…he was an atheist…He held in contempt the Idea of God’s Special interference &c. &c.” ’
My statement regarding what Herndon declared in 1866 comes from David Donald’s book Lincoln’s Herndon, which refers to a draft of a letter from Herndon to someone named Hart on November 26, 1866. I haven’t seen a copy of either of these 1866 letters. It might be that the date of the letter spoken of in the Donald book was wrong, possibly it was written before the Raab Collection letter. If it isn’t, then they would seem to show that Herndon went back and forth between two contradictory positions or he would say one thing to one person and another to someone else. As I have stated, his thinking was rather strange when it came to his law partner, in this area. I don’t think the letter changes too much, it possibly shows further how contradictory Herndon’s statements were as to Lincoln’s beliefs. He didn’t know about Lincoln’s faith during the latter part of his life so he doesn’t really have anything to say about that. The question then is whether Lincoln was an infidel in the earlier part of his life, which I discuss in the book.
It was an interesting question from this gentleman and I appreciate it.

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Religion contributes more to U. S. economy than Facebook, Google and Apple combined

Religion is a huge part of the U. S. economy according a Washington Post article, Study: Religion contributes more to the U. S. economy than Facebook, Google and Apple combined, see it at: https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/acts-of-faith/wp/2016/09/14/study-religion-contributes-more-to-the-u-s-economy-than-facebook-google-and-apple-combined/

It is an interesting article, which says that religion is big business, bigger than Facebook, Google and Apple put together. What I also found to be interesting is that the largest faith-based charity was not a Roman Catholic one, as we are often told that the Roman Catholic Church is the largest church in the U. S. but Lutheran Services of America, which has annual operating revenue of $21 Billion.

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Jack Chick has gone on to meet the God he served

Jack Chick has died, an man dedicated to doing God’s work who was used much to help evangelize the world, died on October 23rd. He was generally hated by the world, because he was not a friend, he did not agree with, the world. The Word of God however says something about that, James 4:4 states: “Ye adulterers and adulteresses, know ye not that the friendship of the world is enmity with God? whosoever therefore will be a friend of the world is the enemy of God.”

The National Post published an relatively hostile article on him entitled “Drawn out: Wherever Jack Chick has ended up, it seems appropriate that his legacy will be inexorably tied to ignorance”, see it at: http://news.nationalpost.com/arts/books/wherever-jack-chick-has-ended-up-it-seems-appropriate-that-his-legacy-will-be-inexorably-tied-to-ignorance

I wrote a letter to the editor in response but this newspaper, as many others do, generally does not publish letters to the editor from people like me.
My letter was short:
Re: Drawn Out, David Berry, October 26.
Millions have had their lives transformed by the simple gospel that Jack Chick, and others, have preached, “…Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, and thou shalt be saved…” (Acts 16:31). One wonders where the strong aversion, the distain that Mr. Berry obviously has for Chick comes from. Perhaps the words of Jesus Christ to his followers from John 15:18 applies, “If the world hate you, ye know that it hated me before it hated you.”

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Jesuits and slavery

Well the chickens might be finally coming home to roost a bit for the Jesuits, even if it is many decades, even centuries late. Several articles have appeared in the Washington Post, such this one: https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/grade-point/wp/2016/09/01/georgetown-panel-urges-university-to-apologize-for-its-role-in-slavery/
It is also interesting that the Jesuits, friends of Jesus that they are, did not have an epiphany and find that they had done a very wrong thing and enslaved others but it was the babes, the young students who forced this issue into the open apparently. And wages are owing, just like they were owing to the children of Israel when they were slaves in Egypt so the Roman Catholic Church should be paying or be forced to pay.

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Bill and Hillary: Part 2.

The anger about Donald Trump among the chattering class seems to have now diminished slightly and he has been in the news this day for his visit to the President of Mexico, (photo of Donald Trump by Michael Vadon).44_Bill_Clinton_3x4Donald_Trump_August_19,_2015_(cropped)

As terrible as Donald Trump is or as the public is generally told he is, Hillary Clinton, that pure as driven snow liberal, has essentially as large a disapproval rating as Trump has. How can that be when she is such an darling of the liberal elite? Could there be a disconnect between the elites and the people they talk down to, i.e. the general public? This is from a woman who has been in the public sphere for many years and the liberal media seems to love as much as they seem to dislike Donald Trump. As I posted about a week ago, Bill, and her, apparently have lots of skeletons in their closets and they are not the skeletons that we have been told about. Many are detailed in Ambrose Evans-Pritchard’s excellent book, The Secret Life of Bill Clinton, as I mentioned.

One of the skeletons, for example, regards Jerry Parks, who was in charge of security at the Clinton-Gore campaign headquarters in Little Rock, Arkansas. He was murdered in September, 1993, after Vince Foster was found dead. He foretold his murder upon hearing the news of Foster’s death, saying that “Bill Clinton’s people were ‘cleaning house,’ and he was ‘next on the list.’ ”
Parks’ son, Gary believed that “Bill Clinton had my father killed to protect his political career” also telling that “We’re dealing with a secretive machine her in Arkansas that can shut anyone up in a moment.”

This was Bill Clinton’s Arkansas. Wow, amazing information, these are not the only murders allegations that dog Bill, and Hillary and Bill have been so close politically, no wonder the American people are suspicious about her, despite how the media often tries to depict her and Donald Trump.

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The latest Ben-Hur movie

Lew_Wallace_(ca._1865)The newest Ben-Hur movie is out now though I haven’t had the opportunity to watch it. It is a remake of the blockbuster 1959 film, a historical drama directed by William Wyler that won 11 Academy Awards. That is the most Oscars won by any film in history, an accomplishment that it shares with the 1997 movie Titanic and the 2003 Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King.
Wikipedia states that the 1959 Ben-Hur is widely considered to be one of the greatest films ever made (it is actually the second movie as it was a remake of one made by this name in 1925). It is based on Lew Wallace’s 1880 novel Ben-Hur: A Tale of Christ. Wallace was a Union major general during the U. S. Civil War and a member of the military commission that judged the eight people who were accused of being part of the conspiracy to murder Abraham Lincoln and other high government officials. These included, famously, devout Catholic Mary Surratt, who was condemned to death and who became the very first woman executed by the U. S. federal government. I have to admit I also have not read the book either. Incidentally, to get a first edition printing is not so cheap, I find it listed for sale at $769 Canadian, ($582 US), slightly less expensive than an original copy of the set of The Trial of John Surratt, which I noticed is just under $800 Canadian, ($600 US). John Surratt was the Lincoln conspirator who was sheltered by Catholic officials and in Catholic institutions while his mother was on trial.
Lew Wallace also served as the governor of the New Mexico Territory and later as U.S. minister to the Ottoman Empire. As the U. S. minister, he was stationed in Constantinople which is now Istanbul, Turkey and he took time to travel to Jerusalem where he did research for Ben-Hur. Writing the book had a big influence in his life, in his later work, The First Christmas from Ben-Hur (New York: Harper and Brothers, 1899), he reportedly declares that the act of writing Ben-Hur resulted in “a conviction amounting to absolute belief in God and the divinity of Christ.”

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Bill and Hillary

The President, First Lady, and Chelsea on parade down Pennsylvannia Avenue on Inauguration day.

The President, First Lady, and Chelsea on parade down Pennsylvannia Avenue on Inauguration day.

It is down, essentially, to two people in the U. S. Presidential election and there is one candidate that the elites and mainstream news media seem to basically hate, that is Donald Trump, and one candidate that the elites and media love and that is Hillary Clinton. One starts to say to themselves when turning on the news, “lets see the ‘What is the latest terrible thing has Donald Trump done / said now’ news”. Meanwhile Hillary Clinton is fine. There is an excellent book written by a top-level investigative reporter however that has a thing or two to say about that. The book is about Bill Clinton but she has been joined at the hip to him so it has implications for her too. It is called The Secret Life of Bill Clinton (1997), written by Ambrose Evans-Pritchard, who was the Washington bureau chief of the Sunday Telegraph, a large British broadsheet newspaper.

According to White House secretary Mike McCurry, Evans-Pritchard has been “the origin of every major Clinton scandal story”. Apparently the mainstream news media was too busy admiring Bill Clinton to report the truth about him. At the beginning of his book, Mr. Evans-Pritchard said that he did not harbor animosity toward Bill and Hillary when he assumed his position at the Telegraph in Washington, as Clinton was first elected President. Before he became President, Bill Clinton was governor of Arkansas. Evans-Pritchard stated when one scratched beneath the surface, one learned things. He wrote:

“You learn that Bill Clinton grew up in the Dixie Mafia stronghold of Hot Springs, and that his brother was a drug dealer with ties to the Medellin Cartel. You learn that a cocaine distributor named Dan Lasater was an intimate friend, and that Lasater’s top aide would later be given a post in charge of administration (and drug testing) at the White House. You learn that Arkansas was a mini-Columbia within the United States, infested by narco-corruption.”

This was the Arkansas of Bill and Hillary Clinton that Evans-Pritchard was speaking about. He also commented on how Clinton politicized, corrupted law enforcement while the mainstream news media informed essentially no one about this.

“In Washington, Clinton moved with ruthless efficiency to take control of the federal machinery of coercion. While the U. S. watchdog press barked and howled with pitiful irrelevance about Clinton’s $200 hair cut, he quietly fired every U.S. Attorney in the country and then made his move on the FBI, which would be transformed gradually, one appointment at a time, into a replica of the Arkansas State Police. When he sacked William Sessions in July 1993, it was the first time in American history that a president had summarily dismissed an FBI director.”

Evans-Pritchard deals with the Clinton corruption of law enforcement when his volume also covers Bill Clinton’s involvement of the cover-up of the murder of Vince Foster, the highest-ranking White House official to die under suspicious circumstances since JFK. I plan another post on Mr. Evans-Pritchard excellent book.

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Pope says the world is at war

So reads the front page headline in the National Post last week (July 28). Is this really news though, that the world may be at war? Jesus Christ said a sign of his coming would be his followers hearing of wars and rumours of wars… (Matthew 24:3 – 6)
The article declared, “The Pope was speaking at the start of his first trip to Eastern Europe, where anti-immigrant sentiments have been rising. He encouraged Europe to welcome refugees from war, hunger and religious persecution and called for compassion.”
“Francis is celebrating World Youth Day in Poland, where the government has shut the doors to migrants and many fear that accepting Muslim refugees would threaten the nation’s security and its Catholic identity.”
“As he started the five-day trip, he told an audience of Poland’s president, diplomats and other dignitaries that what is needed is ‘a spirit of readiness to welcome those fleeing from wars and hunger, and solidarity with those deprived of their fundamental rights including the right to profess one’s faith in freedom and safety.”
So in solidly Roman Catholic Poland, there is no legal immigration of Muslims as “many”, (a significant number, like a majority of the citizens?) fear Muslims refugees would threaten security and the place Catholicism has in Poland. And these are refugees fleeing war who would come into Poland legally. Meanwhile, when this same pope comes to Mexico, to the border where predominantly Catholic Mexicans are not fleeing war and are illegally entering the United States, he says Donald Trump is not a Christian because Trump thinks that these Mexicans should not be entering illegally and he would see that a wall is built so they cannot do so. Yes, very consistent.
One also wonders about “the right to profess one’s faith in freedom and safety” in light of the Fourth Lateran Council though.
In 1215, a great Middle Age assembly of Catholic clergy convened the Fourth Lateran Council, presided over by Pope Innocent III. According to Catholic author Lewis Ellies Du Pin: “In the third canon they excommunicated and anathematized all the heretics who oppose the Catholic and orthodox faith… “

This canon became part of Church law and the commandment to extirpate, or destroy, heretics was put into practice a short time later. According to Wikipedia, part of the third canon states that secular authorities are “…to take an oath that they will strive in good faith and to the best of their ability to exterminate in the territories subject to their jurisdiction all heretics pointed out by the Church…” (emphasis added).
This canon was one of a number decided on by this ecumenical council. A Catholic source called it “the most important council of the Middle Ages”, marking “the culminating point of ecclesiastical life and papal power.” Presided over by a Pope, the decisions made by such a council, according to Catholic sources, is just as valid, infallible and permanent as the judgment by the first church council in Jerusalem, detailed in Acts 15.

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Evolution and Catholicism

My trusty copy of the May 9, 2016, B.C. Catholic also dealt with the alleged tension between “science” and religion. An article entitled Academics and young people discuss evolution, reported on a discussion that happened at the Vancouver Art Gallery Café in April. A Catholic academic was quoted at the meeting: “ ‘As a biologist, I don’t take a breath without presuming that evolution is true,’ said Father Rob Allore, SJ, the pastor of St. Mark’s Parish and a long-time geneticist. He argued evolution helps scientists understand how closely all life is connected.”
Allore also said, “Anything messing with the health of any part of the natural world is going to mess with us.”

According to the article, another Catholic, philosopher and lecturer at the Protestant institution, Trinity Western University, Chris Morrissey, spoke about intelligent design and called it, “ ‘creationism dressed up wit a marketing slogan’ and said the way to understand evolution and faith is to accept that God created the human soul and nature did the rest.”
It is interesting that this man says that people have to accept evolution, in faith, not know that nature, through random processes, gave us the incredibly rich plethora of complex life forms because, of course, you cannot know this, as evolution creating such things has not been observed.

One also wonders why scientists need to understand how closely all life is connected, why is that necessary, isn’t it more important to know what is scientifically true and what is not true? The Dodo bird and passenger pigeon are now extinct but I do not know of anyone who is saying human life may be threatened by this. In any event, it is evident that sadly, the plain teaching of the Word of God, that God created the world and the life on it, is not to be just believed, just accepted, by Catholics, and the Roman Catholic Church.

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