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God Lifted Up Bl. Herman the Cripple to Scatter the Proud in Their Conceit
Blessed Herman the Cripple stands as a shining light, reminding us that God purposely chose what the world considers weak in order to shame the powerful.
By Angelo Stagnaro
I have a great fondness for the saints. And anyone who's sat down and read a hagiography of these blessed people will be overwhelmed, alarmed and grateful at finding a brother- or sister-in-arms.
In my research, one particular saint caught my attention. His name is Blessed Herman the Cripple.
Yes. Blessed Herman … the Cripple.
Well … there are some advantages to political correctness. Admittedly, very few―but there are some.
Herman Contractus of Reichenau, (1013-1054) was an eleventh-century polymath―a person of wide-ranging knowledge or learning in various, seemingly unrelated areas. But, more importantly, he lived a saintly life.
This particular polymath was also severely disabled.
Blessed Herman Contractus of Reichenau proves God doesn't make junk. He was a genius born with spina bifida, a cleft palate and cerebral palsy. Some medical historians have suggested that Blessed Herman suffered from amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) or spinal muscular atrophy.
He was born in AD 1020 and, at the age of seven, his poor farming family gave him over to the care of the abbot of the Benedictine monastery on Reichenau Island in Lake Constance in southern Germany.
Surrounded by other monk-scholars, Herman mastered all of the available knowledge at the time in a variety of different fields, such as history, music, poetry, math, astronomy and theology, within a few years. In addition, he learned to speak, read and write German, Latin, Arabic and Greek. Within his own lifetime, scholars throughout Christendom called him, "The Wonder of His Age."
Thus, Herman was a scientist, a theologian, a musician, a poet and our brother.
He was a Renaissance man before the Renaissance ever started. In fact, humanity wouldn't be blessed with an another intellect like his until Blessed Ramon Llull―the 13th century Catalan inventor of the world's first computer.
Despite Herman's physical disabilities, he built fine musical instruments and intricate astronomical equipment by hand. When he became blind at the end of his life, he dedicated himself to pray and poetry. Many Catholics are familiar with his music considering he wrote two of the most beautiful prayers the Catholic Church possesses―the Salve Regina and Alma Redemptoris Mater.
In addition to these two songs, Herman also composed the officia for St. Afra and St. Wolfgang. His texts even influenced 20th century Russian composer Galina Ustvolskaya―she based three of her symphonies on Herman's work.
He also wrote a treatise on musicology―the science of music. Herman researched and published his findings on the biological, emotional and psychological effect of music on humans and the brain. Any modern understandings of music in relation to the human condition must acknowledge Blessed Herman's early contributions to the field.
But his genius wasn't limited merely to music. He also wrote treatises on geometry, mathematics and astronomy including instructions for the construction of an astrolabe.
Thus, Blessed Hermann contributed to all four arts of the quadrivium―a higher division of the curriculum in a medieval university which included arithmetic, music, geometry and astronomy.
But wait! There's more!
Herman also wrote a well-researched and detailed historical chronicle of Western society from the birth of Christ to the 11th century. Berthold of Reichenau, one of his disciples, continued to expand upon it after Herman's death.
Herman died on September 24, 1054 at the age of 40. He was beatified in 1863.
Keeping all that this great man who led life in a twisted body, consider now what current pro-abortion, eugenics-minded brethren would do if they could have gotten a hold of Blessed Herman the Cripple while in utero.
What do they recommend when a precious child isn’t perfect?
Upton Sinclair (1878-1968) author of The Jungle, warned us that, "It is difficult to get a man to understand something when his salary depends upon his not understanding it." Big Abortion is a multi-million-dollar business that is struggling to remain alive and they aren’t above lying to ensure their future.
If this weren’t the case, they would openly inform parents of their underage clients as to then they secure an abortion. If Planned Parenthood stove for honesty and for "rare" abortions, they'd be ready, willing and able to show sonograms of their clients' babies before killing them. Why not? It's just a couple of cells. Why become shy suddenly? Why "Shout Out" their abortions if a little sonogram frightens them?
It's odd in the extreme that those on the far left who abjure capitalism applaud the filthy lucre raked in by abortionists around the world especially in Canada and the States. And if secularists are as "generous" as they pretend, how come they aren't singlehandedly financing all of the abortion clinics in America instead of forcing the Little Sisters of the Poor to pay for the condoms and abortifacients the former worship so much?
Catholics support 600 hospitals in the States. This number doesn't include the 3,000 pregnancy centers such as Bridge to Life in Queens, NY or rural health centers such as Lexington Medical Clinic in Lexington, Mississippi, run by murder victims Srs. Paula Merrill, SCN and Margaret Held, SSSF. But this is merely a drop in the bucket in terms of Catholic philanthropy. The Catholic Church operates 125,000 hospitals and clinics and 135,000 schools for poor kids around the world, often in places that don’t like Christians.
(By the by, secularists operate 730 abortion clinics — 517 surgical abortion clinics and 213 medication abortion clinics — in the States. Surely secularists are so generous, as they insist, they can easily finance these and thousands more clinics on their own without having to dip into our pockets … and yet, they don't. Their lack of generosity doesn't bolster their argument that they are, in fact, "generous.")
Pro-abortionists have been able to convince too many people that human fetuses aren't human. But, if such is the case, then condor embryos aren't condors and that means condor omelets are back on the menu, folks!
Why wouldn't they be? If pro-abortionists claim there is no connection between embryos and "real" individuals that develop later, then what's stopping any killing whatsoever? After all, as I presume they believe, there's no relationship between a contemporary adult person and any elderly person that may or may evolve.
However, if a human fetus isn't a human, why are childless couples spending their life savings to become pregnant and thereby produce a child? A human child. And, finally, if fetuses aren't human, where do pro-abortionists believe adult humans come from? What is the "magical process" by which a human fetus "mysteriously" becomes a human being? As the law is merely a reflection of the values of the culture legislating them, we can't base a pro-abortionist's circular argument upon obtuse, pharisaical legalisms.
Instead, to be objective, we need to rely upon science and logic to answer the question of the nature of the humanity of human fetuses. And, as any biologist and physician will tell you: There is no magic involved in the process by which a human being is made. A human fetus is human. A child moments before birth is human. A neonatal is human. A toddler is a human. A child is a human. An adolescent is a human. An adult is a human. A senior is a human. A comatose person is a human.
They certainly aren't different species.
In his 1930 encyclical Casti connubii, Pope Pius XI condemned eugenics when he spoke out against sterilization laws:
Public magistrates have no direct power over the bodies of their subjects; therefore, where no crime has taken place and there is no cause present for grave punishment, they can never directly harm, or tamper with the integrity of the body, either for the reasons of eugenics or for any other reason.
Either we have rights to our bodies or we do not. And human fetuses definitely have bodies. If not, what exactly is an abortionist aborting?
It follows that human fetuses have rights over their own bodies and no one else has the right to decide whether that child lives or dies.
The secular Zika-abortionists are slavering over the possibility of yet more dead children like some murderous Nizari Ismailis or grisly tuggees. They cry, "Overpopulation!" and yet none of them are eager at offing themselves for the "good of the planet." Instead, they attack those who can't defend themselves. At best, they are cowards. At worst, they are mass murders hiding behind a "right" that somehow, magically, supersedes any right a human being has to his own life.
Every human being contains within his genome, approximately 200 genetic errors. Some of them are benign like myopia and male-patterned baldness. Some are devastating such as Tay-Sachs, Sickle-cell anemia, progeria, Proteus Syndrome, Epidermodysplasia Verruciformis and Severe Combined Immunodeficiency.
In this great culling of "defective" human beings which eugenicists call for, no one would survive. Even the eugenicists would have to be sterilized/massacred as their misanthropy and sociopathy surely has a genetic base. After all, if atheists insist free will doesn't really exist in a deterministic universe, that means their murderous rampages of the 20th and 21st centuries are the result of their ingrained, congenital atheism and should be stopped.
But there is no genetic disorder that makes a human being less than a human. Instead, only a deep-rooted hatred and sociopathic misanthropy is the cause of such animus.
The cure for that hatred? Love and its Author.
After all, God promises to remove our cold, stony hearts and to replace them with warm, generous ones. (Eze 36:26)
Let's thank God for Blessed Herman the Cripple. He stands as a shining light reminding us that God purposely chose what the world considers nonsense in order to shame the wise, and He chose what the world considers weak in order to shame the powerful. He chose what the world looks down on and despises and thinks is nothing, in order to destroy what the world thinks is important. (1Co 1:27-28)
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Salve Regina (ascribed to Blessed Herman)
Hail, Holy Queen, Mother of Mercy, our life, our sweetness and our hope! To thee do we cry, poor banished children of Eve! To thee do we send up our sighs; mourning and weeping in this vale of tears! Turn, most gracious Advocate, thine eyes of mercy towards us, and after this, our exile, show to us the blessed fruit of thy womb, Jesus! O Clement, O loving, O sweet Virgin Mary! Pray for us O Holy Mother of God, that we may be made worthy of the promises of Christ. Amen.
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