HISTORY: The Past gives valuable Perspective to the Present

HISTORY: The Past gives valuable Perspective to the Present

Popular culture holds a dismissive attitude toward history. Common headlines include “unprecedented times”, “worse than ever”, and “never before.” But how often is that really true? What do we face that is truly without precedent? This mindset—that all things have either escalated or de-escalated, that the present is always somehow more or less than the…

HISTORY:  Mussolini and His Blackshirts March on Rome

HISTORY: Mussolini and His Blackshirts March on Rome

“Either the government will be given to us, or we will seize it by marching on Rome!” declared Mussolini. And his Fascists responded with the cry, Roma! Roma! Roma! The following text comes from the pre-eminent history textbook series for Catholic students, Volume:  “Light to the Nations II: The Making of the Modern World.” The…

History Matters: Google, Columbus Day and More

History Matters: Google, Columbus Day and More

Today, October 14, is a long-established U.S. national holiday in honor of the Catholic Italian Explorer Christopher Columbus who was the first to discover and bring settlers to the new world of what just a few centuries later became the United States of America. There’s much more to the story that you and I learned…

Christopher Columbus and True History from The Mariners’ Museum

Christopher Columbus and True History from The Mariners’ Museum

Non-millennials may recall that the Columbus holiday used to be always celebrated on October 12th, the day Columbus landed on San Salvador. They may not realize that genuine, long-standing and well-researched historical accounts show that Columbus was a deeply religious man, and part of his motivation for crossing the ocean was to bring the Gospel…

HISTORY: 158 Years Ago, Lincoln Threatens Emancipation, on September 22, 1862

HISTORY: 158 Years Ago, Lincoln Threatens Emancipation, on September 22, 1862

“God bless you and all with you,” wrote Lincoln to McClellan after the Battle of Sharpsburg (or Antietam). “Destroy the rebel army if possible.” But September passed, and McClellan still did not pursue Lee. On October 1, Lincoln ordered McClellan to pursue Lee. McClellan obeyed — but only after another 18-day delay. Though not a…

Saint vs. Congresswoman:  After AOC decries statue, Hawaiian Catholic says St Damien of Molokai ‘gave his life’ serving lepers

Saint vs. Congresswoman: After AOC decries statue, Hawaiian Catholic says St Damien of Molokai ‘gave his life’ serving lepers

CNA—A Hawaiian Catholic catechist said that St. Damien of Molokai is a “hero” to the Hawaiian people, after an outspoken congresswoman, Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-NY), claimed the statue honoring him in the U.S. Capitol is part of colonialism and “patriarchy and white supremacist culture.”  St. Damien “gave his life” serving the isolated leper colony at Kalaupapa…

HISTORY: The Holy Roman Empire’s Quiet End on August 6, 1806

HISTORY: The Holy Roman Empire’s Quiet End on August 6, 1806

With war threatening the French empire, Napoleon backed off from dealing with the pope for awhile.  At this point other matters occupied his mind, such as securing the crown of the Holy Roman Empire for himself.  Pictured to the left (or above), the crown of the once-mighty Holy Roman Empire was in use from the…

St. Junípero Serra statue destroyed at California state capitol

St. Junípero Serra statue destroyed at California state capitol

While we were watching fireworks on TV, or in the backyard, or, this July 4th, groaning at the onslaught of nonstop mortars and fireworks in our local cities, the beloved statue of Saint Junipero Serra was being torn down at California’s state capitol; a state that in large measure was uniquely formed by his hand,…

Spanish bishop defends Junipero Serra’s legacy

Spanish bishop defends Junipero Serra’s legacy

A Spanish bishop recently celebrated Mass in the church where St. Junipero Serra was baptized, defending the saint’s legacy against those who have accused him of racism. Bishop Sebastià Taltavull of Mallorca, Spain, recently visited Petra, on the Mediterranean island of Majorca, the hometown of St. Junipero Serra. A great injustice He said the saint…

California Council Votes to Remove Statue of Spanish Priest Canonized by Pope Francis

California Council Votes to Remove Statue of Spanish Priest Canonized by Pope Francis

Newsweek—(reporting includes a video that will make your heart cry—CBJ ed.)  A California city council voted unanimously to remove a statue of a Spanish priest who Pope Francis had canonized. The Ventura City Council cast a 6–0 vote during its meeting Wednesday night to remove a statue of Father Junipero Serra from outside its city…

Attacks on Catholic churches: Mission San Gabriel Early Morning Fire Destroys church

Attacks on Catholic churches: Mission San Gabriel Early Morning Fire Destroys church

July 13, 2020—In the early morning hours Saturday, firefighters responded to a fire at the San Gabriel Mission where they found a massive blaze engulfing the roof and front entrance of the church, San Gabriel Fire Department fire captain Antonio Negrete told CNN. The church sits about 11 miles northeast of Los Angeles. When firefighters…

July Fourth Trivia: The Original and Fascinating History of July 4th

July Fourth Trivia: The Original and Fascinating History of July 4th

At the outbreak of fighting in April 1775, few colonists wanted complete independence from Great Britain. Those who did were thought to be radical. By the middle of the following year, however, sentiments had shifted and many more colonists now favored independence. Then, in August 1775, a royal proclamation from Great Britain declared that the…

Defending American History from Angry, Violent Mobs

Defending American History from Angry, Violent Mobs

Personally, I am not a fan of “Executive Orders,” regardless of which U.S. President issues them.  However, when our national historic heritage is at stake and when local police and city officials do NOTHING to stop mad mob destruction of our historic monuments,  maybe I’ll make an exception, especially if a bill is also introduced…

Perspective: The 1918 Influenza Pandemic and 3 short well-researched videos

Perspective: The 1918 Influenza Pandemic and 3 short well-researched videos

Patheos—[As my colleague] Philip wrote last Friday, “With all the unavoidable news right now about disease and epidemics, it’s an obvious temptation to look back to past eras to see how they coped with such things, culturally as well as medically.” Indeed, as I get more and more emails from my employer, our kids’ school,…

HISTORY: German Catholics Fight for Religious Freedom

HISTORY: German Catholics Fight for Religious Freedom

It was perhaps the final insult for German statesman Otto Eduard Leopold, Prince of Bismarck and Duke of Lauenburg—who was known as Otto von Bismarck (view image to right, below). Ultimately this statesman is credited with masterminded the unification of Germany in 1871. He served as its first chancellor until 1890, in which capacity he…

HISTORY MATTERS: Triumph of the Führer: January 30, 1933

HISTORY MATTERS: Triumph of the Führer: January 30, 1933

On January 30, 1933, Adolf Hitler was appointed chancellor of the German republic, but how could such a man gain such power? Hitler’s message of social justice appealed to workers and the lower middle class. Since Hitler knew what it was to struggle to make a living, they thought they had found in him a…

HISTORY MATTERS: The Pope Escapes Napoleon: January 23, 1814

HISTORY MATTERS: The Pope Escapes Napoleon: January 23, 1814

Napoleon’s victories and his defeat at Leipzig came as distant rumors to Pope Pius VII at Fontainebleau. Because the pope was undergoing a bitter struggle of his own, he had cared little for such news. In January 1813, nine months before the Battle of Leipzig, the pope had received a sudden visit from Napoleon. The…

The History of Thanksgiving

The History of Thanksgiving

The Pilgrims who sailed to this country aboard the Mayflower were originally members of the English Separatist Church (a Puritan sect). They had earlier fled their home in England and sailed to Holland (The Netherlands) to escape religious persecution. There, they enjoyed more religious tolerance, but they eventually became disenchanted with the Dutch way of…

Christopher Columbus: A Catholic businessman of his day?!

Christopher Columbus: A Catholic businessman of his day?!

OK, I might get some heat for this one, but it seems to me — before all the secularist, anti-Christian, anti-Judeo-Christian history revisionists rooted themselves in the re-writing of school history textbooks, in mainstream newsrooms, and as college professors and Google algorythm coders — that Christopher Columbus was a good guy, a respected leader and…

New cardinal says he relied on Eucharist, Mary during time in Soviet prison camp

New cardinal says he relied on Eucharist, Mary during time in Soviet prison camp

Kaunas, Lithuania, CNA – One of the newest cardinals of the Church says he drew strength from the Mass and the Blessed Virgin during the decade he spent in a Soviet prison camp in Siberia. Sigitas Tamkevicius, archbishop emeritus of Kaunas, Lithuania, was elevated to the rank of cardinal in the Oct. 5 consistory. As…