On the day of St Etheldreda

Church of St Etheldreda, England

Great Britain has voted to depart from the European Union. The separation has caused quite a stir in the world. I do not know if this is a good move for Great Britain or not. I don’t think anyone knows. Most likely those who voted to shake the EU monkey off their collective backs were tired of the myriad of regulations flowing from Brussels, and even more tired of the invasion of immigrants from countries that were never part of the British Commonwealth.

The Referendum happened on the day of  St. Etheldreda of Ely, virgin and queen – twice exhumed and found incorrupt.[1] This also happened on a full moon that coincided with the solstice, the last one happened in 1948 the year the modern State of Israel was established.

The now culturally insipid European Union claims the old Christian civilization as its own but denies Christianity at the same time. It has grown a nihilistic tendency to self-destruction and it is exporting it to other cultures. If you wonder why some American youth are ashamed of their own flag and know nothing of their own history, look at the ideological exports of modern and post-modern Europe. Liberalism, Socialism, Marxism, Communism, Fascism, and many other “isms” started in Europe.

Years ago, then Cardinal Ratzinger defined the mood of this generation of Europeans:

“There is a strange lack of desire for a future. Children, who are the future, are seen as a threat for the present; the idea is that they take something away from our life. They are not felt as a hope, but rather as a limitation of the present. We are forced to make comparisons with the Roman Empire at the time of its decline: it still worked as a great historical framework, but in practice it was already living off those who would dissolve it, since it had no more vital energy.”

fbReader may not agree with me but I see this as a tidal wave coming from the Far Orient. The first system to kick the bucket was Chinese Communism. They had to reinvent themselves as a rather Fascist form of Capitalism a few decades ago. It was either that or death. Then the Soviets fell rather ignominiously the day Gorbachev admitted frankly “we can’t continue living like this.” Now is the European Union turn. Their idea of creating a Christ-less Europe is collapsing. The British splitting is only the beginning. France will follow, and others will find ways to blackmail the Central European Bank. Olympus gave birth to a mouse, and it is a dead mouse.

Americans are historically known for being very quick to grasp new opportunities. Here is a good opportunity to learn a valuable lesson from European pain: return to basics. We have seen the great Asiatic powers try to build an alternative to the Christian West and fail miserably. Now we are watching the European version of a Christ-less society come down like a house of cards. Perhaps it is time for the once mighty United States to return to the Christian ideals that made that nation great and prosperous. Britain is leading the way: there is no point in conquering the world at the cost of one’s own soul. It is going to be a painful comeback but there is no other option. We have to learn again to be Americans just like the British who are now going back to their roots.

“I am the vine; you are the branches. If you remain in me and I in you, you will bear much fruit; apart from me you can do nothing.” John 15:5


[1] On the previous day (June 22) the Church remembers St Thomas More, and St John Fisher, two glorious English saints













9 thoughts on “On the day of St Etheldreda

  1. After glorying in the news, the hand-wringing of those affiliated with the culture of death, and some good analysis – Wretchard over at Belmont Club has an upbeat treatment that references one of Churchill’s greatest speeches – I came straight here, Carlos. I knew you would be looking at this, as I have, through the lens of salvation history. This is an earthquake, to be sure.

    My question was going to be, “So what do you think, Carlos, is the break-up of the edifice of modernity really underway, or is this the prequel to The Empire Strikes Back?” I guess it can be both. This will break a lot of rice bowls, so there are many who won’t just sit back and let go of that to which they have become so attached.

    If we’re blessed, though, this will be more like Lepanto than the Titanic. There was even a mighty storm that many took as a sign from on high that God was on the side of Leave. And then, there are many of us wearing out our Rosaries in hopes of helping as many as possible pass through the door of mercy rather than the door of justice.

    Only a fool could fail to see the writing on the wall (and there remain many fools out there). It is time to start rebuilding. If God has mercy on us, the fighting just may not be that intense this time around. I can see that happening because the secularists don’t have much gumption or motivation to fight for what they believe in, which is nothing. And fear is not a great position from which to try to overcome an adversary, which in this case would be the Bride of Christ.

    Anyway, I look forward to reading what you have to say about this as it unfolds and you process it from your vantage point.

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  2. Castelletto, the edifice of modernity was doomed from the start just as this European Union was doomed when they decided to take the successful economic union to the political level. The Church could not stay united in that continent! Now imagine how far this bunch could go. Not fifteen centuries for sure. The unification of Germany brought in a number of Soviet-trained leftovers like Angela Merkel, that actually accelerated the process. She’s been fumbling the shots for a few years now. Allowing the Syrian refugees to come in droves was not an intelligent move. It was like importing the excess production of a country by giving them a free pass at customs. What is the excess production of Syria? Islamic misery and pain. The Pope fell for it too, he is lamenting it now. The damage is done, no way to reverse it without major military operations. Britain did the logical thing, it will take a few more days to settle into the Scottish voting population. They will come around within a year or so.

    The Founding Fathers of the US were very smart in judging the frailties of the European style of government. What they came up with was a major improvement. They were very wise when it comes to evaluating human nature, and they knew that the strength of a country lies not in the system of governance, but in the natural impetus of the people who want to improve their lot in life. They were so right that we could say without fear to equivocate that the strength of the US permitted Europe to be rebuilt twice, after wars that otherwise would have reduced the continent to nothing. But the heart of Europe is clouded by ideologies very distant from the noble Roman ideals, and even more distant from Christian ideals. They keep falling back into the same hole.

    The lesson for the USA is clear: clean up your act, ditch the imported ideologies, repent and return to Christ, and be ready to fight again because the world is much smaller now than it was in 1941. We will see action before August – I hope I am wrong – but the straits of the Black Sea have become too important to let them be in Turkish hands. The Russians will enter Istanbul. Russia will be the hammer, Europe will be the anvil. After that what will happen is anyone’s guess.

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  3. Very interesting.

    Meanwhile, I’ve lately begun to think that 9/11 was, indeed, an inside job, only done by Soros and his neo-communist/globalist allies. They were too ready with their agitprop “peace” marches, deep-sea oil well sabotage, Obamanoid, anti-Bush propaganda, Common Core, pink swastikas, and all the rest leading to where we find ourselves today, with the U.S. virtually on its knees and lawlessness unleashed at home and abroad. The scatterer has been hard at work these past ten years.

    I just can’t imagine where I’d be had I not entered the church 6 years ago!

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  4. Carlos,
    I had never heard of St Ethelreda, so I looked her up. Her 2nd marriage after years of widowhood was for political reasons; she acquiesced to the wishes of those who wanted the benefit of this union but she tried to live her marriage the way she wanted – as a sister to her husband. For a time it worked but soon he tired of it, and began to make demands upon her. Some accounts say that she fled the marriage.

    Sounds familiar 🙂

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    • The traditional belief was that she remained a consecrated virgin through both marriages, a practice known to other royal couples of the time – I believe St Alfred the Confessor and his wife were also consecrated virgins. Her second husband tried to consummate the marriage but was miraculously prevented twice from doing so. He wisely desisted from trying a third time.

      I think the date is significant because England was called traditionally “the dowry of Mary” and because there is a parallel between St Etheldreda and Our Blessed Mother, in queenship and virginity.

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  5. From Wikipedia … 🙂 Dowry: an amount of property or money brought by a bride to her husband on their marriage.

    Dowry of Mary – “The title originated in the Medieval period, when devotion to the Virgin Mary in England was particularly strong. It was believed that England belonged in some special way to Mary, who was seen as the country’s “protectress” and who through her powers of intercession acted as the country’s defender or guardian. Though the title’s precise origin is unknown, it had become widespread by the middle of the fourteenth century, and around the year 1350 a mendicant preacher stated in a sermon that “it is commonly said that the land of England is the Virgin’s dowry”. Around fifty years later, Archbishop Thomas Arundel, discussing Mary and the Incarnation, wrote that “we English, being … her own Dowry, as we are commonly called, ought to surpass others in the fervor of our praises and devotions”. By the reign of Henry V, the title dos Mariae, “dowry of Mary”, was being applied to England in Latin texts and according to chronicler Thomas Elmham English priests sought the intercession of “the Virgin, protectress of her dower” on the eve of the Battle of Agincourt.” […] Pope Leo XIII referred to England’s association with the title in 1893. Addressing a group of Catholic pilgrims from England in Rome, he spoke of “the wonderful filial love which burnt within the heart of your forefathers towards the great Mother of God … to whose service they consecrated themselves with such abundant proofs of devotion, that the kingdom itself acquired the singular and highly honourable title of ‘Mary’s Dowry.’


  6. “We have our own dream and our own task. We are with Europe, but not of it. We are linked but not combined. We are interested and associated but not absorbed. If Britain must choose between Europe and the open sea, she must always choose the open sea.” — Winston Churchill, writing for The Saturday Evening Post, 1930.

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