Wednesday, July 7, 2021

Quote of the Day

"The Church does not have technical solutions to offer and does not claim 'to interfere in any way in the politics of States.' She does, however, have a mission of truth to accomplish, in every time and circumstance, for a society that is attuned to man, to his dignity, to his vocation…Fidelity to man requires fidelity to the truth, which alone is the guarantee of freedom (cf. Jn 8:32) and of the possibility of integral human development."

--Benedict XVI, Caritas in Veritate, no. 9

Thursday, June 10, 2021

Quote of the Day

"This is called social friendship: to seek the common good. Social enmity destroys. A family is destroyed by enmity. A country is destroyed by enmity. The world is destroyed by enmity. And the biggest enmity is war. And today we see that the world is destroying itself with war because people are incapable of sitting down and talking. OK, let’s negotiate. What can we do in common? In what things are we not going to give in? But let’s not kill more people. When there is division, there is death, death in the soul because we are killing the capacity to unite. We are killing social friendship. And that’s what I ask of you today: be capable of creating social friendship."

--Pope Francis, Address to Young People in Cuba, September 20, 2015

Sunday, May 23, 2021

Pentecost Reflection

"Look at the apostles: they were alone that morning, alone and bewildered, cowering behind closed doors, living in fear and overwhelmed by their weaknesses, failings and their sins, for they had denied Christ. The years they had spent with Jesus had not changed them: they were no different than they had been. Then, they received the Spirit and everything changed: the problems and failings remained, yet they were no longer afraid of them, nor of any who would be hostile to them. They sensed comfort within and they wanted to overflow with the comfort of God. Before, they were fearful; now their only fear was that of not testifying to the love they had received. Jesus had foretold this: '[The Spirit] will testify on my behalf; you also are to testify' (Jn 15:26-27)."

--Pope Francis, Homily, May 23, 2021

Monday, April 5, 2021

Easter Reflection

"Galilee was an outpost: the people living in that diverse and disparate region were those farthest from the ritual purity of Jerusalem.  Yet that is where Jesus began his mission.  There he brought his message to those struggling to live from day to day, the excluded, the vulnerable and the poor.  There he brought the face and presence of God, who tirelessly seeks out those who are discouraged or lost, who goes to the very peripheries of existence, since in his eyes no one is least, no one is excluded.  The Risen Lord is asking his disciples to go there even now: he asks us to go to Galilee, to the real “Galilee” of daily life, the streets we travel every day, the corners of our cities.  There the Lord goes ahead of us and makes himself present in the lives of those around us, those who share in our day, our home, our work, our difficulties and hopes.  In Galilee we learn that we can find the Risen One in the faces of our brothers and sisters, in the enthusiasm of those who dream and the resignation of those who are discouraged, in the smiles of those who rejoice and the tears of those who suffer, and above all in the poor and those on the fringes.  We will be amazed how the greatness of God is revealed in littleness, how his beauty shines forth in the poor and simple."


--Pope Francis, Homily at Easter Vigil Mass, April 3, 2021

Thursday, April 1, 2021

Triduum Reflection

"It does not occur to them [the Sanhedrin] that by mocking and striking Jesus, they are causing the destiny of the Suffering Servant to be literally fulfilled in him. Abasement and exaltation are mysteriously intertwined. As the one enduring blows, he is the Son of Man, coming in the cloud of concealment from God and establishing the kingdom of the Son of Man, the kingdom of the humanity that proceeds from God. 'Hereafter you will see...', Jesus had said in Matthew's account (26:64), in a striking paradox. Hereafter--something new is beginning. All through history, people look upon the disfigured face of Jesus, and there they recognize the glory of God."

--Benedict XVI, Jesus of Nazareth: Holy Week: From the Entrance into Jerusalem to the Resurrection (Ignatius Press, 2011), p. 182

Friday, February 26, 2021

Quote of the Day

"We are subject to numerous temptations. Each of us knows the difficulties we have to face. And it is sad to note that, when faced with the ever-varying circumstances of our daily lives, there are voices raised that take advantage of pain and uncertainty; the only thing they aim to do is sow distrust. If the fruit of faith is charity – as Mother Teresa often used to say – then the fruit of distrust is apathy and resignation. Distrust, apathy and resignation: these are demons that deaden and paralyze the soul of a believing people. Lent is the ideal time to unmask these and other temptations, to allow our hearts to beat once more in tune with the vibrant heart of Jesus."

--Pope Francis, Homily, February 14, 2018

Thursday, February 11, 2021

Quote of the Day

"In the sick one finds Jesus, and in the loving care of those tending to the wounds of the neighbor, there is the way to meet Jesus. Those who take care of the little ones are on the side of God and defeat the culture of waste, which, on the contrary, prefers the powerful and deems the poor useless. Those who prefer the little ones proclaim a prophecy of life against the prophets of death of all time, even today, who discard people, discard children, the elderly, because they are not needed."

--Pope Francis, Homily, March 17, 2018

Thursday, January 28, 2021

Two Letters on the 2020 General Election

The following letter to then-Vice President Mike Pence was written by members of the Virginia House of Delegates, including my own Delegate, Ronnie R. Campbell (VA-24), and sent January 5, 2021:

*****

Dear Sir:

This letter is written to you by elected members of the Virginia General Assembly, notifying you that we hereby ask you to nullify the Certificate of Ascertainment of Presidential Electors issued by the governor of our state. Further, we request a stay of designation of any designation of Presidential Electors from our state until such time as a comprehensive forensic audit of the November 3, 2020, election has taken place to determine the actual winner.

The reported vote margin in Virginia between the electoral slates is 451,138 votes. In compliance with the unconstitutional 2020 Special Session legislation SB 5120 (CHAP0001), at least 215,140 ballots were deposited in unsecured "drop boxes" otherwise prohibited in the Commonwealth (39 localities, including some larger ones, were not able to provide actual counts or estimates of "drop box" ballots received).

As members of the state legislature of Virginia, we make the following findings: We find that SB 5120 (CHAP0001), purportedly enacted by our state legislature during the 2020 Special Session, was enacted in violation of the Constitution of Virginia, and thus laws which should have governed the election of Presidential Electors were not followed. SB 5120 was intended to change election laws with an emergency enactment date in violation of the Constitution of Virginia's Article IV, Section 13's requirement that "all laws enacted at a special session, including laws which are enacted by reason of actions taken during the reconvened session following a special session but excluding a general appropriation law, shall take effect on the first day of the fourth month following the month of adjournment of the special session; unless in the case of an emergency (which emergency shall be expressed in the body of the bill) the General Assembly shall specify an earlier date by a vote of four-fifths of the members voting in each house..."

We have received written correspondence from most of the 133 registrars in Virginia. There is a clear consensus among them that the last-minute changes to election law, (which were passed in an unconstitutional act of the Virginia General Assembly), were communicated poorly, required significant additional labor to execute, came with little additional funding, and greatly compromised the ability of registrars to conduct the 2020 election.

We further find that numerous changes to the laws of Virginia enacted in the 2020 session of the Virginia General Assembly led to greatly increased opportunities for massive voter fraud and election fraud. In Virginia, the race for President, the U.S. Senate race, and five Congressional races had their vote tallies shifted by large, late-night reporting from central absentee precincts, which do not provide the data necessary to establish the authenticity and validity of these counts. This is a significant issue which has not arisen in years past, as nearly two-thirds of Virginia's vote was counted in central absentee precincts. This absence of data has made the election impossible to verify. This is a serious concern, as the means, motive, and opportunity for large-scale vote fraud exists in the Commonwealth of Virginia. In the process of investigating the 2020 General Election, many additional serious irregularities have been shown to exist, including improper third-party payments to local governments, late-night ballot counting inconsistent with state guidance, untimely execution of certifications for machine logic and accuracy testing, improper political activities by registrars and at polling locations, and much more.

It is our fervent request that the date of this joint session of Congress be deferred until the completion of the forensic audit of the election.

Should you, as Vice President, announce a winner based on a tally of unconstitutionally and fraudulently elected Presidential Electors, it would create a rent in the fabric of the nation. Our Country is based on the consent of the governed, and if half of the country were to believe that their votes no longer matter, we fear for the consequences for the union.

*****

Here is the letter I wrote and sent this morning to Delegate Campbell in response:

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Dear Delegate Campbell:

Thank you very much for signing and sending a truthful and informative letter to Vice President Mike Pence on January 5, in which you and fellow delegates briefly summarized many grave problems with the conduct and processing of the 2020 presidential, Senate, and House elections in the Commonwealth of Virginia in violation of our state Constitution, and called upon him to nullify the fraudulent Certificate of Ascertainment of Presidential Electors issued by Governor Ralph Northam.

Like many Virginians and Americans, I have been appalled to witness an increasingly radicalized Democratic Party employ large-scale illegal voter fraud, roll out a highly sophisticated disinformation campaign through traditional and social media, and use corruption, manipulation, intimidation, blackmail, character assassination, and even impeachment to steal federal and state elections from principled Republican candidates and to silence and destroy their opponents in their unbridled greed for power and domination. And like millions of Americans, I was greatly disappointed that the Vice President, instead of upholding the Constitution of the United States in favor of the rightful winner of the 2020 presidential election, chose to ratify the Electoral College vote of January 6 based on fraudulent ascertainment of presidential electors from Virginia, Pennsylvania, Georgia, Michigan, Wisconsin, and several other states.

It is painfully obvious to any candid observer that the integrity of our national elections has been compromised on a massive and unprecedented scale in favor of a wholesale takeover of the legislative and executive branches by a thoroughly dishonest and corrupt Democratic Party.

Amid the grave injustice of this dangerous situation for our beloved country, which continues to cry out to Heaven for redress and rectification in spite of all attempts to repress and conceal it, we the people of Virginia and the United States find great consolation in the presence in Richmond and Washington, D.C. of honest, dedicated, and God-fearing Representatives like yourself who still act and govern in accordance with right reason, the common good, and the laws of our state and federal Constitutions.

As you assume the great challenge of carrying out exemplary service to our state and our nation while fighting against the new tyrannical Democratic regime, please be assured of my continued support and prayers.

Sincerely yours in Christ,

Justin Soutar

*****

Sunday, January 10, 2021

Reflection on the Baptism of the Lord

"John's baptism with water has received its full meaning through the Baptism of Jesus' own life and death. To accept the invitation to be baptized now means to go to the place of Jesus' Baptism. It is to go where he identifies himself with us and to receive there our identification with him. The point where he anticipates death has now become the point where we anticipate rising again with him."

--Benedict XVI, Jesus of Nazareth: Part One: From the Baptism in the Jordan to the Transfiguration (New York: Doubleday, 2007), p. 18

Monday, December 28, 2020

Christmas Reflection

"Christmas invites us to reflect, on the one hand, on the drama of history, in which men and women, wounded by sin, ceaselessly search for truth, the search for mercy, and the search for redemption; and, on the other hand, on the goodness of God, who has come towards us to communicate to us the Truth that saves and to make us sharers in His friendship and His life. And this gift of life: this is pure grace, not by any merit of our own. There is a Holy Father who says: 'But look there, over there, there: seek your merit and you will find nothing other than grace.' Everything is grace, a gift of grace. And this gift of grace, we receive it through the simplicity and humanity of Christmas, and it can remove from our hearts and minds the pessimism that has spread even more nowadays as a result of the pandemic. We can overcome that sense of disquieting bewilderment, not letting ourselves be overwhelmed by defeats and failures, in the rediscovered awareness that that humble and poor Child, hidden  away and helpless, is God Himself, made man for us."

--Pope Francis, General Audience, December 23, 2020

Wednesday, December 2, 2020

Quote of the Day

"We are not living in broad daylight, but awaiting the dawn, amid darkness and weariness. The light of day will come when we shall be with the Lord. Let us not lose heart: the light of day will come, the shadows of night will be dispelled, and the Lord, who died for us on the cross, will arise to be our judge. Being watchful in expectation of his coming means not letting ourselves be overcome by discouragement. It is to live in hope."

--Pope Francis, Homily, November 29, 2020

Wednesday, November 25, 2020

Reflection for Thanksgiving Day

"Whereas it is the duty of all nations to acknowledge the providence of Almighty God, to obey His will, to be grateful for His benefits, and humbly to implore His protection and favor.... I do recommend and assign Thursday, the 26th of November next, to be devoted by the people of these States to the service of that great and glorious Being who is the beneficient author of all the good that was, that is, or that will be; that we may then all unite in rendering unto Him our sincere and humble thanks for His kind care and protection of the people of this country... and, in general, for all the great and various favors which He has been pleased to confer upon us.”

--George Washington, Thanksgiving Proclamation, October 3, 1789

Wednesday, September 30, 2020

Quote of the Day

"To say that an issue [abortion] is 'preeminent' does not mean that it is the only issue, but that it surpasses all others in importance. It is preeminent in that it is the basic human right on which all other rights depend. After all, if a baby is killed before birth, that person will never be able to exercise any other human rights." 
--Bishop Thomas John Paprocki, Diocese of Springfield, Illinois, September 20, 2020

Thursday, September 17, 2020

Quote of the Day

"When our forefathers knelt and prayed for wisdom at the Constitutional Convention in Philadelphia in 1787, then stood up and together assembled a seventeen-page document known as the Constitution of the United States of America, they were clearly guided by the hand of God. Today the forces of political correctness would expel God from every public sphere in American life, and the hearts and minds of every man, woman and child in America are up for grabs in this cataclysmic battle between the lovers of men and the lovers of God. Some would rather never choose between the two, but life is full of choices, and our individual and collective choices determine the quality of our existence."

--Dr. Benjamin S. Carson, America the Beautiful (Zondervan, 2012), p. 194

Monday, September 7, 2020

Reflection for Labor Day

Earth as seen from Apollo 17
"In some ways, the current pandemic has led us to rediscover simpler and sustainable lifestyles. The crisis, in a sense, has given us a chance to develop new ways of living. Already we can see how the earth can recover if we allow it to rest: the air becomes cleaner, the waters clearer, and animals have returned to many places from where they had previously disappeared. The pandemic has brought us to a crossroads. We must use this decisive moment to end our superfluous and destructive goals and activities, and to cultivate values, connections and activities that are life-giving. We must examine our habits of energy usage, consumption, transportation, and diet. We must eliminate the superfluous and destructive aspects of our economies, and nurture life-giving ways to trade, produce, and transport goods."

--Pope Francis, Message, World Day of Prayer for Care of Creation, Sept. 1, 2020