A SAINTLY SPIN
'spirit' is to be canonised at St Peters on
17/10/2010. Her beatified 'self' will join 10,000 others in a sky-club
open to dead people involved in miracle-making.
I referred to the
recovery of Irishman David Keohane from a
year-long coma as a likely MacKillop-inspired 'miracle', but a
presumably stronger 'miracle' was confirmed in December 2009. A NSW
great-grandmother, Kathleen Evans, had recovered from inoperable lung
cancer (which had spread to the base of her brain) in 1993, due to her
having prayed to God via Mary's intercession, while having a
piece of Mary's clothing pinned to her nightwear. Mrs Evans' revealing
comment: "All I had left was prayer. I was a great believer in prayer."
(The Advertiser, 12/1/2010)
pleased Mrs Evans is,
at 66, alive and well, but surviving
relatives of other cancer deaths might wonder why their prayers weren't
answered. Her story is one delusion amidst a long-running grand
delusion, involving issues such as life after death, the existence of
miracles, the alleged power of prayer and the promotion of
Christianity's oldest and largest denomination.
extraordinary did happen to Mrs Evans, and, at our
current level of knowledge, it's not scientifically explicable. But
it's a big jump from we don't know (but one day we might) to a default
conclusion of a supernatural cause. Not one miracle has ever
due to the absence of a 'non-Earthly' force capable of re-arranging the
laws of physics.
the paucity of
'miracles' (the first involved a recovery from
leukemia, reported in 1961) in over a century. Isn't it statistically
likely that if one took a large sample of terminally ill patients and
had them pray to a god of their choice, there'd be as good a rate of
recoveries been dominantly from cancer, and few
from other fatal illnesses? Or lost limbs, eyesight, or hearing
miraculously renewed? Has any study been done on those with incurable
illnesses who've unsuccessfully prayed with or to Mary? Is the deity
which enacts medical miracles capricious? Is one person's faith as a
"random beneficiary" is better than another's? Where is the
documentation on the "exhaustive and thorough" Vatican medical
investigation (it's kept secret)? Was the placebo effect
given that Mrs Evans admits to her strong belief in prayer?
Vatican view on
canonisation is that it "doesn't make a person a
saint, it recognises what God has already done"! I'd like to know
they know this, but it expediently obviates the problem of a saint
interceding while not yet canonised or beatified.
one prays with
saints, not to them. It's believed that all
prayers are passed on but "some saints are very close to God in heaven,
and their prayers are particularly effective. It's never been explained
how whatever does the healing transmits itself from an unknown sky
location to deactivate cancers.
'canonisation game' is used as a PR device to promote
Catholicism, reinforce its mythology, increase recruitment, and as a
'stick' to beat its 'competition' the Anglican Church whose dogma has
it that the 'age of miracles' ended at the end of NT times, and that
all Protestant Christians are saints!
opened some of
the first free schools in Australia, but
Adelaide's Bishop Sheil didn't like the idea of free education to the
poor, which led to her excommunication in 1871 (rescinded in 1872).
With Father Julian Woods, she founded the Josephite Order in 1866, "the
brown joeys", and her lasting legacy is that she devoted much of her
life to social justice and humanity. She was unjustly accused of
alcoholism, embezzlement and prostitution, from which she was
eventually cleared, but typically offered kindness and forgiveness to
those who spoke out against her.
P, Miracle Cures
Threaten to Put God In The Dock, Weekend
Aussie Battler Who's Heading For Sainthood, Crikey
J H, MacKillop
Miracles? The Investigator #128, Sept 2009
J H, Saint
Machine Soon To Be Sainted? Investigator #122,