SEPARATION OF CHURCH AND STATE IN PORTUGAL
July in Fatima has been very busy for me. Projects that are not really my own have been falling in my lap right and left and have kept me occupied 10 hours a day. I have been working as a volunteer at the shrine only helping when they are short of help, but nonetheless taking some time in the middle of the days. Mass, Rosary, gym and Internet take most of the time each day. Everything must be good for me as my health is improving with each day and I am starting to feel like a young man again. I have had time to keep up with the news in America and Europe through the Internet and this news became the subject matter of this Newsletter.
FATIMA AND THE GOVERNMENT
Early this month when going to Mass I was blocked by the police while a parade went by. To my surprise this was the Portuguese Military in full dress uniform and with Government trucks and jeeps. The Military was making a pilgrimage to Fatima. Leading the parade was 20 horses with riders in full dress military uniform and holding the government flags of the country. Behind them came marching soldiers in uniform and side arms. Then came the trucks with equipment and men. Officers came in jeeps with their command flags. Inside the Shrine they set up camp just like they would in a battle situation but instead of war, they came to pray and to honor Our Lady. A special Mass was said in the Cova da Iria for the Military and they spent the weekend there in full uniform. Would you find that in America today?
Another time this month a Pilgrimage of government sponsored Old Folks Homes where busses of old people came from all over Portugal to have a day in Fatima. Each buss was marked with colored hats or arm bands so they could find their way back to their groups. This did not work real well though because many got lost. For the sake of this newsletter, however, this was another government sponsored religious pilgrimage. Would you find that in America today?
Then came the public school children dressed in colored hats and carrying balloons of the same colors. The closed down the schools to honor Our Lady and spent government money to take the children to Fatima. This was particularly beautiful to me because nothing is more inspiring than tens of thousands of children singing the Mass and then singing to Our Lady as then parade Her statue through the Cova waving goodbye to Her with their colored hats and then releasing the balloons. Would you find that in America today?
Sometime in the early years of Fatima a group was formed to promote the Messages of Fatima and to build up the Kingdom of God, the Church. This group is called in English, "The Movement of the Messages of Fatima" and has as its symbol a many storied castle like Church under construction and reaching to the sky. They have been successful in converting entire businesses to the movement and are the largest Fatima movement in Portugal. Each year they made their pilgrimage to Fatima in hundreds of busses and cars. They have all night prayer by candlelight until 11:00 AM Mass the next day. I tried to hang in there with them but could not. I think I was the only one to quit. Entire businesses would close down to make this pilgrimage. Would you find that in America today?
One of the four television stations is a government public station and yet that station shows many Catholic programs for free. Would you find that in America today? National and Religious holidays are one and the same, abortions are illegal, divorce is hard to get, Religious statues are on government property, the government takes care of the old Catholic Churches and maintains them with government money. Public hospitals and post offices carry religious pictures and statues. Abortions in Portugal are illegal. America?
Though Madeline Murray O'Hare has been dead for five years, she continues to haunt the USA from her grave. CBS will be forced to discontinue "Touched by an Angel" for using the word God in every program.
Madeline Murray O'Hare, claming to be an atheist although probably a Satanist, successfully managed to eliminate the use of Bible reading from public schools a few years ago. Now her organization has been granted a Federal Hearing on the same subject by the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) in Washington, DC. Their petition, Number 2493, would ultimately pave the way to stop the reading of the gospel our Lord and Savior, on the airwaves of America. They got 287,000 signatures to back their stand! If this attempt is successful, all Sunday worship services being broadcast on the radio or by television will be stopped. This group is also campaigning to remove all Christmas programs and Christmas carols from public schools!
Mentioning God in schools has been banned and He is being removed even from history books, but one bright graduating student outsmarted his school. Before graduation he planned what he would do for a speech and told his classmates what to do also and this was passed around in secret to every student.
This class would not pray during the commencements ----- not by choice but because of a recent court ruling prohibiting it. The principal and several students were careful to stay within the guidelines allowed by
They gave inspirational and challenging speeches, but no one mentioned divine guidance and no one asked for blessings on the graduates or their families. The speeches were nice, but they were routine.......until the final
speech received a standing ovation. A solitary student walked proudly to the microphone. He stood still and
silent for just a moment, and then he delivered his speech ... an astounding-- SNEEZE!
The rest of the students rose immediately to their feet, and in unison they said, "GOD BLESS YOU." The audience exploded into applause. The graduating class found a unique way to invoke God's blessing on their future with or without the court's approval. This is what America has come down to. Abortions are legal, God is not.
THE FUTURE OF EUROPE
Through the Internet I have been watching the progress of the new European Constitution that is being written now and sections being ratified by the selected commission for this purpose. Once completed it will be forced on the member states of the European Union or they will be forced to get out of the Union of European States at huge financial sacrifice. John Paul II urged Catholics to offer their contribution to the European Convention, the social-political forum that is outlining the constitutional and institutional future of the European Union. Since Feb. 28, the European Convention, convoked by the European Council, has been examining questions posed by the reform, including entry to new member countries, and the way to guarantee democratic legitimacy. The convention invited representative organizations to participate in its June 24-25 session. Contributions to the discussion may be made through its Web page at
So far this Convention has adopted Abortion in demand, has refused any mention of the contribution the Catholic Church has made to the growth and culture of Europe, has adopted an absolute separation of Church and State, and has even warned Countries like England and Sweden that there preference for state religions will have to change.
With interest the Vatican in following the work of the European Convention and the Holy Father has said, "I myself have had the opportunity to express my disappointment over the omission of a reference to Christian and religious values in the writing of the Charter of Fundamental Rights" of the European Union. In writing this document, approved in 2000, a reference in the preamble to the "Christian roots of Europe" was eliminated because of pressures exerted by the French government. "I very much hope that the Ecclesial Movement for Cultural Commitment will mobilize so that the religious component will not be ignored, which over the centuries has imbued the formation of European institutions," the Pontiff said. "The Christian patrimony of civilization, which has contributed so much to the defense of the values of democracy, liberty, solidarity among the peoples of Europe, must not be lost or neglected," he added.
The plan of the Convention seems sure, to follow America and the Internationalist into a culture with no God.
WILL PORTUGAL GO ALONG WITH EUROPE?
Just like the evolution of the Federal Government of America where the Fed. overrides the State laws, so will the European Constitution override the Constitutions of the Countries of Europe. That being the case if the people of the Country do not like the new constitution they will have to drop out of the European Union and all its financial benefits of open borders, a single currency, trade and banking preferences. If this constitution continues the way it is going Portugal will have to loose all its Catholic Identity and its Catholic history. After living here for almost two years, what do I think will happen?
I think the Politicians will accept the new Europe and capitulate to the pressure put on them. Portugal will become European for a time, about a year. Then the people will rebel starting with the women. There will be peaceful marches on government offices at first and later not so peaceful. The women will force the men to take action and the people of Portugal will topple their government and withdraw from Europe. What kind of Government will they then adopt? I am hoping they will go back to a Catholic Government like they had prior to the Masons taking power in 1914 and for this reason I wrote a Catholic Constitution. Maybe!