Monday is the feast of the Immaculate Conception, the dogma proclaiming that Mary, in anticipation of her role in bringing mankind its Redeemer, came into being without original sin. As a result of this grace, she never commit any actual sin, as befits the Mother of Christ who came to take away the sins of the world.
Mary: The New Eve
Although the Doctrine of the Immaculate Conception was not promulgated until 1854, it was a belief in the Catholic Church from the earliest ages. St. Irenaeus called Mary “the New Eve.” Eve was originally without sin. In the fifteenth century the term, “The Immaculate Conception” became popular, and at the apparition at Lourdes Mary used this title to identify herself to St. Bernadette.
In 1854, while promulgating this dogma, Pope Pius IX said Mary was not only preserved from evil but had the fullness of grace, and is an image of what the whole church is to become, clothed in the garment of salvation and robed in the cloak of justice. Even the poet Longfellow called Mary, “Our Human Nature’s Solitary Boast.”
Marian devotees cannot understand Christians who downplay Mary’s role in our redemption, believing that devotion to Mary decreases the importance of Christ’s redemptive act. The truth is that honor given Mary redounds to the honor of her Son.
Catholics love this Holy Day and pray, “Who is she that cometh forth as the morning rising, fair as the moon, bright as the sun, terrible as an army set in battle array.”
Happy Feast of the Immaculate Conception.
Portrait of an Aging Abortionist
If you ever start feeling sorry for yourself, consider the case of Dr. William Rashbaum, and give thanks that you are not in his shoes.
Rashbaum is an abortionist in New York City. He knows abortion is wrong, and says he took an oath not to do abortions. His own father, also a doctor, could think of no greater insult than to point out that a fellow doctor did abortions.
Yet Rashbaum started doing abortions when it became legal and once did 25 second trimester abortions in a single day. He admits that he doesn’t sleep well, and he knows that many people hate him. His helpers say that working with him is hellish, because he’s a grouch, a screamer and insufferably arrogant.
Once, while aborting a pair of twins in late term, his assistants ran out, threw up, and asked herself, “Is this right?” Rashbaum is an unabashed atheist, but says he can understand women who have been told by their priests that they must not have abortions.
He is proud of his work and is furious at any effort to put restrictions on abortion . He hates the partial birth abortion ban, calling it a reflection of the ridiculous extreme of conservatism represented by our current administration.
Rashbaum is rich, but doesn’t know what to do with his money. He has a mechanical toy bank collection, and grows tomatoes.
He has taught some hundred other doctors how to do abortions. He tells women having abortions that they should mourn the loss of their babies, and boasts that he has never lost a patient and that only a few women have become sterile as a result of his abortions.
According to Rebecca Paley, who wrote “Cruel to be Kind,” the story of Dr. William Rashbaum, he has performed some 21,000 abortions. But Dr. Rashbaum is getting old, is slowing down, has had a hip replacement and a cancer removed from his lung, and admits that “patients don’t want an old man” for their doctor.
Rashbaum keeps the ashes of his brother under his desk, and kept the ashes of his mother under a table in his consulting room for two years. His wife says he is a burdened man who worries that Roe v. Wade will be overturned. But he continues to do abortions and says he enjoys what he does. Pray for Dr. William Rashbaum.
Lutheran General Protest
Mark your calendar for this Saturday noon, Dec. 13, at Lutheran General Hospital, 1775 West Dempster in Park Ridge (map). Jill Stanek and I will give short talks.