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Re: Christianity and Military Service #89127
10/01/03 12:21 PM
10/01/03 12:21 PM
Joined: Oct 2002
Posts: 1,233
Philadelphia
A
Andrew J. Rubis Offline
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Philadelphia
Hold on a minute there, Alex!

St. Basil recommended that soldiers who killed men in battle (we must assume that he meant "armed men" who were still putting up a fight and not surrendering soldiers) abstain from the eucharist for three years. His recommendation was subsequently canonized by the ecumenical council/synod.

He also made a point of mentioning that the earlier fathers did not consider such killing in battle to be "murder" (which carries with it a 20 year excommunication).

Now, I'm not saying that he didn't recommend that every citizen of every Christian nation that went to war should also abstain, but that this OPINION of his remained exactly that, his OPINION.

What was canonized as our norm was only the excommunication for specific soldiers who killed other men in battle.

In this light, we can safely say that his opinion regarding a national 3-year abstension was not canonical and falls into the realm of personal pennace "above and beyond the call of duty."

Good to see you around smile .

With love in Christ,
Andrew

Re: Christianity and Military Service #89128
10/01/03 12:25 PM
10/01/03 12:25 PM
Joined: Nov 2001
Posts: 26,108
Canada
Orthodox Catholic Offline
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Canada
Dear Andrew,

Good to see you too, compatriot of Mother Teresa!

Whew! That is good to hear! Both Canada and Ukraine have sent soldiers to Iraq.

I'd have no place to hide otherwise . . . wink

Alex

Re: Christianity and Military Service #89129
10/01/03 03:05 PM
10/01/03 03:05 PM
Joined: May 2002
Posts: 395
S. California
ByzantineAscetic Offline OP
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ByzantineAscetic  Offline OP
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S. California
No, there is no patron saint specifically for the USMC, but St. George is patron of Military/soldiers.

As long as you balance your faith and your serve to your country you should be ok.

dan

ps. hi brian

Re: Christianity and Military Service #89130
10/06/03 04:00 PM
10/06/03 04:00 PM
Joined: Jul 2003
Posts: 78
Fort Lauderdale, FL
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PaxTecvm Offline
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One thing that's always buged me about Christians fighting is that, even when two Catholic powers are fighting EACHOTHER, both sides have Catholic priests and bishops blessing the armies.

What exactly does the Church's blessing of an army mean? Does anyone know the actual texts of the Church's prayers in this regard?

During World War II, I'm told that German bishops and priests gave liturgical blessings to the Nazi armies, telling them to kill Americans. Is this true?

Re: Christianity and Military Service #89131
10/06/03 10:53 PM
10/06/03 10:53 PM
Joined: Nov 2001
Posts: 1,658
Mexico, Iasi
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Mexico, Iasi
PaxTecvm:

Every nation has a mission in the world, and Nationalism is not opposed to Christianity, a man who defends and fights for the nation is a rightful man. Many of those Nazi soldiers never necessarily supported the Nazi policies, but they fought for their country.

Lawrence:

I agree with you completely. Chronicles state that when the American Army reached the Nueces River, Mexican priests and wealthy men started sending letters to American soldiers asking them to join Mexican side. Zach Taylor then told his men to shoot every American who crossed the river to Mexico. Of course I would have done the same, that was a matter of treason even if a "good hearted" traition, and it was their duty to execute them.

Now from a non-National point of view, I'll analyse the example of Juan Bautista Vigil Alarid (a New Mexican functionaire who welcomed Kearny's troops and accepted a charge in Charles Bent's government):

The address which you have just delivered, in which you announce that you have taken possession of this great country in the name of the United States of America, gives us some idea of the wonderful future that awaits us...
No The inhabitants of this Department humbly and honorably present their loyalty and allegiance to the government of North America. No one in this world can successfully resist the power of him who is stronger...

Do not find it strange if there has been no manifestation of joy and enthusiasm in seeing this city occupied by your military forces. To us the power of the Mexican Republic is dead. No matter what her condition, she was our mother. What child will not shed abundant tears at the tomb of his parents? ... We are cognizant of your kindness, of your courtesy and that of your accommodating officers and of the strict discipline of your troops; we know that we belong to the Republic that owes its origin to the immortal Washington, whom all civilized nations admire and respect. How different would be our situation had we been invaded by European nations! We are aware of the unfortunate condition of the Poles.

(Juan Bautista Vigil Alarid, NM 1846)


From a secular-individualistic point of view, his refusal to fight against the USA troops seems kind of understandable because the war was to be lost anyways and the man believed that the future of the province would be better under USA control than as a part of Mexico. He was also an ambitious and wealthy man who was afraid of loosing his family and properties in a war that was a lost cause (no one in this world can successfully resist the power of him who is stronger...)

Now. regarding the Batallion of Saint Patrick. Would you choose to fight in the weak, unorganized, unarmed and unprepared army of a poor and young country even knowing that you would loose the war anyways? Any financial proposal seems no sense to me, unless they were too stupid to see what was happening. The struggle would have had no sense if they were not fighting for a sacred and spiritual cause.

Both cases ended up with the death, a death they deserved because of their treason.

Re: Christianity and Military Service #89132
10/07/03 12:22 AM
10/07/03 12:22 AM
Joined: Feb 2003
Posts: 2,217
Illinois
L
Lawrence Offline
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Lawrence  Offline
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Illinois
Mexican

Regarding the reasons behind the desertions of the men who comprised the San Patricio Battalion, I'd say the promises of much higher pay (than what was received in the US Army) and large tracts of land, were the primary inducements.

Was John Riley, the Battalion's founder, a man of any deep convictions ? Well, I'll let his record speak for itself. Riley was a Catholic, born in Ireland, who joined the British Army and was stationed in Canada. In 1843 he deserted and fled to the US. In 1845 he joined the US Army, and according to him, was forced to join the Mexican Army after he was captured while going into the town of Matamoros to hear Mass on April 12 1846. He claimed that General Pedro De Ampudia threatened to have him shot as an alien to both Mexico and the USA if he didn't join the Mexican Army, obviously Riley chose the latter. Riley's second in command Patrick Dalton was also believed to have been a deserter from both the British and American Armies.

At the same time that a couple hundred American deserters were serving in the Mexican Army, an even larger number of men of Spanish ancestry were serving in the American Army against Mexico.

Re: Christianity and Military Service #89133
10/07/03 08:56 AM
10/07/03 08:56 AM
Joined: Nov 2002
Posts: 133
NC
Glenn Offline
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Quote
Originally posted by StBenedictRule:
No, there is no patron saint specifically for the USMC, but St. George is patron of Military/soldiers.
And St. Michael the Archangel is the patron saint of paratroopers. Huuuuaahhh!

Slava Isusu Christu!
Glenn
;-)##


Lord Jesus Christ, Son of God, have mercy on me, a sinner
Re: Christianity and Military Service #89134
10/07/03 01:04 PM
10/07/03 01:04 PM
Joined: Jan 2003
Posts: 117
mid-west
C4C Offline
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mid-west
Chesty Puller is the USMC's Saint

Re: Christianity and Military Service #89135
10/07/03 03:01 PM
10/07/03 03:01 PM
Joined: May 2002
Posts: 395
S. California
ByzantineAscetic Offline OP
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S. California
Hahaha.

dan

Re: Christianity and Military Service #89136
10/07/03 05:40 PM
10/07/03 05:40 PM
Joined: Nov 2001
Posts: 1,658
Mexico, Iasi
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Mexico, Iasi
Regarding the reasons behind the desertions of the men who comprised the San Patricio Battalion, I'd say the promises of much higher pay (than what was received in the US Army) and large tracts of land, were the primary inducements.

Yea there are proofs about the promises, but I doubt that the Mexican army could give them a higher pay since our army was a disaster, and about the large tracts of land, those promises would have been effective if there was a real possibility of wining the war, but that was not the case at all.

In the case of the men of Spanish ancestry it was very similar, regarding Vallejo and Vigil for example, they already knew that the United States men were good in business and would give progress to their places and charges under their administration were convenient, and they would be the sure winers of the war.

Re: Christianity and Military Service #89137
10/08/03 03:43 PM
10/08/03 03:43 PM
Joined: Apr 2003
Posts: 482
VA
DAVIDinVA Offline
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It always intrigues me that when two "Christian" nations go to war, they each assume God is on thier side. If the United States went to war with the United Kingdom, would God Bless America or would God Save the Queen?

Re: Christianity and Military Service #89138
10/08/03 04:27 PM
10/08/03 04:27 PM
Joined: Feb 2003
Posts: 156
Detroit, MI
Scotus Offline
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Quote
No, there is no patron saint specifically for the USMC, but St. George is patron of Military/soldiers.
IIRC, St. George is the Patron of Infantry, St. Martin of Tours is the Patron of Cavalry and St. Barbara is the Patron of Artillery.

Re: Christianity and Military Service #89139
10/08/03 05:59 PM
10/08/03 05:59 PM
Joined: Jul 2003
Posts: 154
Bethany Oklahoma
Greg Offline
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Greg  Offline
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I would say Go for it.As a Viet Nam vet who spent 12 years in the Army as a MP I never had any problem between my faith and the Military.When I got a blessing from a priest I always felt it was a blessing or prayer for each man's safty rather then one country's victory over the other.At least thats what I feel it should be. Greg


Greg
Re: Christianity and Military Service #89140
10/08/03 11:52 PM
10/08/03 11:52 PM
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Posts: 576
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bergschlawiner Offline
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Someone asked about German chaplains blessing troops in WWII - naturally, it was their country they were fighting for. Also, the White Russian forces under Gen. Vlassov received plenty of blessings from the priests while fighting for the Germans, as did Ukrainian patriots, Pro-german Cossacks, Romanian Axis troops, etc.

Re: Christianity and Military Service #89141
10/11/03 05:33 PM
10/11/03 05:33 PM
Joined: Sep 2003
Posts: 1,790
ohio
iconophile Offline
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There is a name for this phenomenon: scandal. Throughout history we have examples of Christians - and clerics- putting Caesar before Christ and failing to condemn unjust wars. Americans are adept at this: they denounce the US as a pagan nation until we go to war, then it's rally 'round the flag, boys, praise the Lord and pass the ammunition. In an age where the worst damage in any war is to the innocent civilian population we should be more critical than ever.
In the Middle Ages, people had sense enough to call the Muslim invaders the "scourge of God" and examine their consciences for the sins which brought on this punishment. Where is such good sense today? No, Americans insist that "they hate us because we are good and because we are free". Just close your eyes and repeat this until it makes sense...

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