Thursday, April 10, 2008

An historical view

Melissa at Coffeybean Family tells me that I am:

highly defensive and you need to be a little more educated about the history in which you speak of.

She also assures me of her own deep interest in history!

No I don't use second hand information as my sole source of knowledge in any particular area. I just so happen to be a book worm and find the history of *all* religions interesting.

And yet her in depth historical reading has led her to this conclusion:

You know what's interesting, not sure of the history or whatnot, but the Catholic church seems to go into places demanding conversion under severe penality,(sic) yet most missionaries you read about for the Christian faith go into places as servants, bringing medicine, services.
And when presented with a number of famous missionaries who never forced anyone to convert under "penalty" Melissa says:
To deny that certain events such as the Crusades and Inquistion happened really does nothing for your arguments. They did happen. Get over it

She seems to have the Inquisition, the Crusades and Missionaries all muddled up together in a thick anti-Catholic gumbo.

But anyway, since the saints seem to be a big sticking point with Melissa, Candy et al, it might be a good idea to feature some of the saints of the day here. There is a Saint of the Day button in the side bar that you can use to do this yourself, but as I get time I may highlight a few saints as well.

In light of Melissa's comment, I thought today's saint was a good example:
St. Magdalen of Canossa

Wealth and privilege did nothing to prevent today’s saint from following her calling to serve Christ in the poor. Nor did the protests of her relatives, concerned that such work was beneath her.

Born in northern Italy in 1774, Magdalen knew her mind—and spoke it. At age 15 she announced she wished to become a nun. After trying out her vocation with the cloistered Carmelites, she realized her desire was to serve the needy without restriction. For years she worked among the poor and sick in hospitals and in their homes and among delinquent and abandoned girls.

In her mid-twenties Magdalen began offering lodging to poor girls in her own home. In time she opened a school, which offered practical training and religious instruction. As other women joined her in the work, the new Congregation of the Daughters of Charity emerged. Over time, houses were opened throughout Italy.

Members of the new religious congregation focused on the educational and spiritual needs of women. Magdalen also founded a smaller congregation for priests and brothers. Both groups continue to this day.

Holy Cow, a nun AND a missionary of sorts with no rapes, beatings, or murders on her resume! How odd!! This version of her life even calls her "sensitive and affectionate." Clearly an anomaly!

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Kelly said...

I believe Melissa said she wasn't interested in any sort of Catholic conversation the last time she commented at Candy's and we all went to visit her, too. *sigh*

Elena said...

It's akin to Britney Spears being sick of the photographers and then showing up without underwear! Can't really have it both ways...

Maggii said...

The way I see it..they want to be free to say antyhing they matter how inflamatory...without having to deal with the fallout from their comments.

I mean really if one is going to make an inflamatory comment against Catholic missionaries ..even admitting they don't really know the history? I don't think they should be surprised when they get rebuttals...and since Candy doesn't allow refutations of anything she or any of the commentors in agreement with her say, on her stands to reason some may come to your blog to refute what you said elsewhere...if one doesn't want responses....maybe one should be careful what they say. Especially if one doesn't want to argue about such things, maybe one shouldn't make inflamatory comments against a whole group of people....just a thought.

Sal said...

I must have missed the part where you denied the Crusades ever happened...

I don't think Melissa can have read you thoroughly.

Frankly, Catholic historians's willingness to be honest and not gloss over the failings of people in the Church made a big impression on me when I was converting. It meant that the Church was bigger than the faults of the individuals in it.

Tracy said...

Excellent Elena (you and Kelly always amaze me!!)

faithful catholic said...

I happened to visit the site of one of Candy's commenters. In Candy's com box she said she was raised Catholic but left the church "years ago." Then, I read through her own posts and find that in January of this year she posted that she and her husband had "recently left the Catholic Church." I'm wondering how "recent" "years ago" could be. She is only twenty, so I guess to a twenty year old "years ago" could be pretty "recent" still.

I noticed your comments at Melissa's blog too and her reply. Holy cow, I guess she told you, huh? I read through some of her posts and couldn't help noticing some of the more derisive ones actually sound like she could be talking about Candy. Wonder if Candy's ever read any of Melissa's own posts.

And, I also noticed you've got Amy posting about this stuff too.

I wonder how long it will be before Candy tries to completely block us from reading again. Or, maybe she'll figure out how to post her chosen comments without leaving links to the commenters' blogs.

Elena said...

On Halo scan it's not hard to take down links to others blogs.

For me as a blogger, I would have a problem with that. Most bloggers WANT people to come and read their blogs. If they post on a "popular" site like Candy's they would want that link up to encourage visits to their blog. So it's a double edged sword. If Candy takes the links down, sure, we can't visit them. However no one else can either. For some people that might make the difference between reading and moving on, or reading and actually taking the time to comment.

If Candy makes the blog unreadable again, I suggest that IP blocker. It worked great!

Anonymous said...

I don't know anything about the crusades (apart from a token bit from school which doesn't count) but my minister (Evangelical Presbyterian) says that "they" (Arabs? Muslims?) were attacking into Europe and "we" (Christians) were defending ourselves.

Although I've come across the idea that the crusades were "wrong" (probably by people who were taught as little as me about it), people I've come across usually just use it as an argument against religion per se or against Christians/Christianity in general. I've never heard it used as an argument against Catholocism (can't spell it) even from people who disagree with it.

Even if it was just the Catholic church, all non-Christians are going to see if protestants start attacking Catholics about it it is that Christians fight against each other which is hradly a good witness.

Kelly said...

Although I've come across the idea that the crusades were "wrong" (probably by people who were taught as little as me about it), people I've come across usually just use it as an argument against religion per se or against Christians/Christianity in general.

The Crusades are really so complicated that it is difficult to even know where to start sometimes. Many modern books or newspaper articles give the impression that Christians tried to come and take Muslim lands. It is true that the Muslims conquered Christian lands, not that the Muslims were there first. (Which is why Istanbul used to be called Constantinople.)

On the other hand, after the initial conquest, the Muslims were initially benign rulers who left the Jewish and Christian population alone. However, a different group of Muslims came to power, and this second group is the one who started taking Christian slaves, preventing pilgrimages to holy sites in Jerusalem, etc., prompting the Crusades.

The Crusades were a series of military campaigns, not just one incident. The Popes often encouraged them, but didn't really have much control over them. Hence, many abuses taking place.

The sack of Constantinople is one where we are often blamed for the rape, murders, and pillaging which took place after Christians conquering the city. Yet, it is difficult to imagine the Pope ordering the desecration of the Hagia Sophia, the one of the principal churches of Catholicism (which is now a mosque).

So anyway, there are a lot of very bad things that happened during the Crusades. But it is difficult to explain in a nutshell all the various events, people involved, factors, etc. It is much easier for people to just say Crusades=Catholic mistake.

Here is a link to a Catholic article about the crusades:

Anonymous said...

Thanks for the link about the crusades. I haven't reasd it yet but will do when I have some time.