Wednesday, January 17, 2018

Hatred between Catholics and Protestants (Part 1)

Hatred between Catholics and Protestants
(Part 1)

Over the years, many people have asked me, why is there so much trouble at football games? Why do Protestants and Catholics hate each other, especially in Northern Ireland? Sadly, it's just as prevalent in Scotland as it is in Northern Ireland. I am going to give you insight during the time that I lived in Scotland. Also, if you will click on the links on each section, you will get a historical review on what it had been like at various times in the past and how the hatred continues to this day.

I just want to make it known that this post is not meaning in any way, to put down or disrespect the Catholics or Protestants. It’s also not meant to slander the Pope or The Virgin Mary if that is what you believe and worship. I just want to describe the events and actual words that were and probably still are used today to defame the Catholic faith and those who are part of it. In addition, the slander and bigotry from the Catholics which was directed toward the Protestant faith. What I am going to describe, is my own personal experience while living in Scotland.

A personal thought.

Last night I had a strange dream, prior to this dream though, as I have many times, I woke up in the middle of the night, and prayed and said, “God, please speak to me”. Then I fell asleep and had this dream.
As I was dreaming I went to look at a car for sale, a Station Wagon, (or an estate car in Britain). I drove up the driveway to the home and parked in front of their deck. The deck was elevated about ten feet. A person came out and welcomed me with a strong Irish accent. I said to him, “so you’re from Ireland?”
I recognized the accent because my dad had been Irish, that is, from Northern Ireland.
He said, “Yes I am” and he mentioned the name of the town. I said, “That’s in Southern Ireland, you must be Catholic?”, “That I am”, he said. I then responded and told him that I was a Protestant. At that he started looking at my arms; I said to the person who was with me, “you know why he’s looking at my arms? He’s looking for Protestant tattoos.”
Just at that the phone rang, he answered the phone, and I said to his wife, I’d better not tell him that my dad and Grandad came from Enniskillen, which is about 99% Protestant. He heard me, and when he came off the phone he said, “I guess we won’t be having any business dealings”, I said, “why, because I’m a Protestant?” At that, I woke up.
I thought about it for a long time, trying to understand why I would have such a dream. Then I thought about my prayer, does God want me to write about the hatred between Catholics and Protestants?
Approximately six years ago, I always had it on my mind to do just this, and then I thought of all my friends in Scotland and England, the resentment that they would feel toward me, exposing Scotland and Ireland as countries of hatred and bigotry.
I would probably lose a lot of my friends and they wouldn’t think too highly of me, you know, like a turncoat, letting the old side down.
I thought and I thought, the old cogs going around in my head, does the world need to hear this? Does the world want to hear this? Then I decided, yes, people need to hear how people live or lived in this part of the world where I grew up as a child.

Moving to Scotland

First of all though, let me tell you just a little about my family and me.
In the 1950’s, my mum, dad and my two older brothers had moved from Scotland to a small town in England called Luton. The town is approximately forty miles north of London. Then in 1954 I was born there and my younger brother also in 1959.
I remembered a lot in those seven years while living there (as told in my autobiography called “Life is….but a memory”).
Then in 1961 my parents moved back to Scotland. They moved to a small town called Gourock, where I would be raised and lived there until 1979 before moving to Canada.
The town where I lived was classified as a holiday resort. The adjacent towns though of Greenock and Port Glasgow were very much industrial and provided much needed employment in the many shipyards and factories within the area.
As I started primary school, I quickly found out, that the schools were split up into Catholic Schools and Protestant Schools. When I was young, I didn’t really know the difference. We (The Protestants) were children and they (The Catholics) were children.
My mum and dad grew up in the Salvation Army and in somewhat Christian homes, eventually; they were even married in the Salvation Army. As it turned out, they left and started their own mission and eventually pastored another church.
This church link (above) will take you to Google Maps please rotate to see picture of church. This was my mum and dad's church in Greenock Scotland.
Over the years I grew up with my friends and as it turned out, they were all from Protestant families and we all went to the same schools. Again, I didn’t think too much about it.
Then while in my home, I would ask my dad certain questions about things I had heard outside, at school and by my friends. All related to the Orange Lodge, the special handshake of The Masons etc.
I remember my dad telling me years before, that he had been in the Orange lodge and the Masons. Needless to say, my dad never ever did show me the secret handshake. Now, as a kid, curiosity sets in and I just have to know. When I became an adult, I never did join the Orange Lodge or Masons, so here I am after all those years and I still don’t know the handshake. Ah well! I guess it wasn’t meant to be.
Primary school wasn’t too bad, but the football (soccer) teams were quite different. I quickly realized that there was extreme hatred between the two, that is, Catholics and Protestants.  Especially the two rival teams of GlasgowRangers (Protestant) and Glasgow Celtic (Catholic).

The influence of friends.

Of course growing up and going into high school would prove to be something quite different, something that I had never experienced before. There was the bitter hatred, bigotry, and violence between Catholics and Protestants within our school and the Catholic school of St Columba’s.
When we would see the other Catholic children coming home from their school, we would chant at them. We would shout obscenities at them and call them sectarian names.
I remember when I was with one of my friends, not far from my house. A red-headed girl was going by with her bicycle and she had a little basket attached to the front of her bike. I started shouting obscene Catholic chants at her and then I kicked the basket off of her bike. She ran home with her bike crying.
Not long after, she returned with her mum in hand. They went to my house and spoke with my mum. I knew now I was in big trouble. I believe I got a good licking from my mum.
Anyone that we knew who had red hair was definitely a Catholic. As well as hating Catholics, we hated people with red hair because we just knew that they were Catholic.
It’s amazing, how such a young mind, can be manipulated, tarnished, and brainwashed into thinking and believing all those awful things. Yet, that’s the way it was.

In Scotland we have many football teams, but the most famous teams are Glasgow Rangers and Glasgow Celtic. While living in Scotland I supported and was a big fan of Glasgow Rangers.
I used to learn all the songs, as they would come in handy as I became older and starting attending the football matches.
When I left school, I joined the local Rangers SupportersClub in my town. There was a great sense of pride as I entered the club, signed on, and received my membership book. I was now a full member and very proud of it.
I then started attending all the matches in Glasgow and even away games. I learned all the sectarian songs, bashing the Catholic faith, cursing the pope and hating the Catholics in general.
We would sing praises to the Queen as we swayed back and forth with our Union Jack Flag flying high singing “God Save the Queen” along with our Rangers scarves around our necks. What a great feeling, especially when you’re in amongst over forty thousand fans. What a great feeling as we got to the end of a sectarian song as we all shouted in unison Fu@# the Pope.
The atmosphere at a Rangers /Celtic game was electrifying, the hatred and bitterness from both sides was so thick, and you could cut it with a knife. We couldn’t stand each other, we hated each other’s guts, with a passion, and I mean a passion.
We would die for our faith, so to speak. By the way, our faith was devotion to our football team, not God; it was totally Catholics against Protestants. This had nothing to do with religion, even though people keep calling it religious, it had nothing to do with religion at all. It was just pure hatred toward each other.
I was raised in a Christian home, my mum and dad operated a mission and a church, some of my friends were taught to live good decent lives, but once we were out of distance from our home, we were bigots.
It was the red, blue and whites (Rangers) against the green and white (Celtic). It was bigotry at its worst.

We would sing sectarian songs like the ones below. Just for your information so that you know the name,” Fenian” in the songs is referring to a Catholic. The name “Wherry” (song #4) was our local supporter’s pub where we would drink (that is, all Protestants). “Gourock” was my home town mentioned in the songs.

Song #1 “The cry was no surrender, surrender, or you’ll die, with heart in hand and sword and shield, we’ll guard old Derry’s walls”. 

Song #2 “On the green grassy slopes of the Boyne, on the green grassy slopes of the Boyne, it was there where we slew those “Fenian” Bas@#%&*, WHERE! On the green grassy slopes of the Boyne”.

Song #3 “Hello, hello, we are the Billy Boys, hello, hello, you’ll tell us by our noise, we’re up to our knees in “Fenian” blood surrender or you’ll die, we are the Bridgeton Billy Boys”. 

Song #4 Take a walk into The Wherry and you’ll hear the famous call, get out you “Fenian” Bas@#%^&*we’re the “Gourock” Billy Boys”.

Song #5 “We are the “Gourock” Derry Fu@# the Pope and the Virgin Mary”.

Song #6 “Last night I saw my daddy making a bomb, ooo wee, chirpy, chirpy, cheep, cheep. Woke up this morning and the chapel was gone, ooo wee, chirpy, chirpy, cheep, cheep, chirpy, chirpy, cheep, cheep, gone”. 

(The #6 song is to the tune of Chirpy, Chirpy, Cheep, Cheep by a Scottish band called “Middle of the road” released in the pop charts in 1970.)

Song #7 “I was born under a Union Jack; I was born under a Union Jack. Do you know where Hell is, Hell is in the Falls, Heaven’s in the Shankill Road we’ll guard old Derry’s walls. I was born under a Union Jack.

Chorus: Chapels are for burning, Catholics go to hell
Proddies go to Heaven
and it’s just as f#%^ing well, so I was Born under a Union Jack.

Falls is relating to Falls Road (a Catholic area) and Shankill Road (a Protestant area) both areas are in Belfast Northern Ireland. 

News Clip.
Please read the link to this article and read all the comments. It will open your eyes and verify the hatred and bigotry that I’m talking about, I’ve been away from it for forty years and it’s worse than ever.
Excerpts from the Daily Mail Newspaper regarding a Rangers/Celtic match September 12th, 2016.

Return of the shame game: Hanging effigies, sectarian songs and offensive banners mar the first Old Firm league clash in four years between Celtic and Rangers
  • Celtic fans hung blow-up sex dolls, with their mouths taped and hand tied 
  • Offensive banner was unveiled, which read 'Know your place. Hun scum' 
  • Rangers supporters trashed a toilet block in the away section of Parkhead 
  • They were also heard singing the banned Billy Boys song during 5-1 loss 
Here is the link which includes photos of the Celtic supporters effigies and damage done by Rangers supporters.

The return of the Old Firm game saw hanging effigies, sectarian songs, offensive banners, and vandalism to Celtic Park.

Scotland's biggest two football clubs clashed in the league for the first time in four years on Saturday, bringing back the hatred, bigotry and religious intolerance that the Premiership had been without.

Celtic supporters hung blow-up sex dolls from the top tier of the Jock Stein Stand before their 5-1 Glasgow derby win over Rangers.

An offensive banner was also displayed in the stadium's Green Brigade ultras section, which read: 'Know your place. Hun scum.'

Meanwhile, Rangers fans sang the infamous Billy Boys song, which has been banned for its sectarian line 'we're up to our knees in F****n' blood'. 

The away supporters also trashed the toilets in their section, causing thousands of pounds worth of damage.

The Glasgow derby is one of the fiercest rivalries in sport and had been missing from the calendar following Rangers' liquidation in 2012, which saw them start again in Division Three.

Matches between the two sides run deeper than football because of the volatile mix of religion, politics, and sporting history.

Rangers has a traditionally Protestant and Unionist fan base, while Celtic's supporters are more likely to have a Roman Catholic background and an affinity to Irish Republicanism, the I.R.A. terrorist organization.

The Catholic supporters flaunt and wave the flag of the I.R.A. a terrorist organization in Southern Ireland.

While Celtic was playing a team from Israel, the Celtic fans waved Palestinian flags.
Courtesy of The Daily Mail September 12, 2016 

Please watch for part 2 as the story continues.
Where did all this hatred and bigotry come from?

 I appreciate your thoughts on this subject. Please leave a comment below.

Written by Chris Turner
January 17, 2018 

Sunday, January 14, 2018

Hatred between Catholics and Protestants.

Hatred between Catholics and Protestants.

New article coming this week.

Hatred between Catholics and Protestants in Scotland.

My personal story of growing up in Scotland.

Keep watching.

Tuesday, December 26, 2017

“I’m gonna have a love affair”

“I’m gonna have a love affair”

I couldn’t remember what she looked like she was such a delight
I know I had to see her one more time I just wanted to reunite
I saw her sitting in the corner I decided to pick her up
I knew that handling her right, we’d have lots of fun
There was no turning back, the affair had just begun

She was beautiful as I held her close as she sat upon my knee
I would rub my fingers on her neck I knew it was meant to be
Attractive curves on both sides and her face was golden too
If I moved my hands right through the night, 
she would move as I do
We’re gonna make sweet music tonight yeah, just me and you

The affection that I feel for you it’s gonna last all night long
I know when we’re together all I want to do is play our song
As we cuddle in this room tonight I’ll try, so hard that you’ll see
I want to make sweet music with you, my love, my guitar and me


I just love my old guitar as I feel her warm embrace

I knew we were in tune, in love, my heart began to race

I would play with her all through the night, the melody a beautiful delight

Yeah, we’re gonna be together again

We’re gonna make sweet music tonight again

Written by Chris Turner
October 10, 2014

Sunday, December 24, 2017

Christmas…true or false?

Christmas…true or false?

An instructive relic of the long struggle is preserved in our festival of Christmas, which the Church seems to have borrowed directly from its heathen rival. In the Julian calendar the twenty-fifth of December was reckoned the winter solstice, and it was regarded as the Nativity of the Sun, because the day begins to lengthen and the power of the sun to increase from that turning-point of the year. The ritual of the nativity, as it appears to have been celebrated in Syria and Egypt, was remarkable. The celebrants retired into certain inner shrines, from which at midnight they issued with a loud cry, “The Virgin has brought forth! The light is waxing!” The Egyptians even represented the new-born sun by the image of an infant which on his birthday, the winter solstice, they brought forth and exhibited to his worshippers. No doubt the Virgin who thus conceived and bore a son on the twenty-fifth of December was the great Oriental goddess whom the Semites called the Heavenly Virgin or simply the Heavenly Goddess; in Semitic lands she was a form of Astarte. Now Mithra was regularly identified by his worshippers with the Sun, the Unconquered Sun, as they called him; hence his nativity also fell on the twenty-fifth of December. The Gospels say nothing as to the day of Christ’s birth, and accordingly the early Church did not celebrate it. In time, however, the Christians of Egypt came to regard the sixth of January as the date of the Nativity, and the custom of commemorating the birth of the Saviour on that day gradually spread until by the fourth century it was universally established in the East. But at the end of the third or the beginning of the fourth century the Western Church, which had never recognised the sixth of January as the day of the Nativity, adopted the twenty-fifth of December as the true date, and in time its decision was accepted also by the Eastern Church. At Antioch the change was not introduced till about the year 375 A.D.
What considerations led the ecclesiastical authorities to institute the festival of Christmas? The motives for the innovation are stated with great frankness by a Syrian writer, himself a Christian. “The reason,” he tells us, “why the fathers transferred the celebration of the sixth of January to the twenty-fifth of December was this. It was a custom of the heathen to celebrate on the same twenty-fifth of December the birthday of the Sun, at which they kindled lights in token of festivity. In these solemnities and festivities the Christians also took part. Accordingly when the doctors of the Church perceived that the Christians had a leaning to this festival, they took counsel and resolved that the true Nativity should be solemnised on that day and the festival of the Epiphany on the sixth of January. Accordingly, along with this custom, the practice has prevailed of kindling fires till the sixth.” The heathen origin of Christmas is plainly hinted at, if not tacitly admitted, by Augustine when he exhorts his Christian brethren not to celebrate that solemn day like the heathen on account of the sun, but on account of him who made the sun. In like manner Leo the Great rebuked the pestilent belief that Christmas was solemnised because of the birth of the new sun, as it was called, and not because of the nativity of Christ.
Thus it appears that the Christian Church chose to celebrate the birthday of its Founder on the twenty-fifth of December in order to transfer the devotion of the heathen from the Sun to him who was called the Sun of Righteousness….
Yet an account titled “How December 25 Became Christmas” on the Biblical Archaeology Society’s Web site takes some issue with this theory:
Despite its popularity today, this theory of Christmas’s origins has its problems. It is not found in any ancient Christian writings, for one thing. Christian authors of the time do note a connection between the solstice and Jesus’ birth: The church father Ambrose (c. 339–397), for example, described Christ as the true sun, who outshone the fallen gods of the old order. But early Christian writers never hint at any recent calendrical engineering; they clearly don’t think the date was chosen by the church. Rather they see the coincidence as a providential sign, as natural proof that God had selected Jesus over the false pagan gods.
Furthermore, it says, the first mentions of a date for Christmas, around 200 A.D., were made at a time when “Christians were not borrowing heavily from pagan traditions of such an obvious character.” It was in the 12th century, it says, that the first link between the date of Jesus’s  birth and pagan feasts was made.
It says in part:
Clearly there was great uncertainty, but also a considerable amount of interest, in dating Jesus’ birth in the late second century. By the fourth century, however, we find references to two dates that were widely recognized — and now also celebrated — as Jesus’ birthday: December 25 in the western Roman Empire and January 6 in the East (especially in Egypt and Asia Minor). The modern Armenian church continues to celebrate Christmas on January 6; for most Christians, however, December 25 would prevail, while January 6 eventually came to be known as the Feast of the Epiphany, commemorating the arrival of the magi in Bethlehem. The period between became the holiday season later known as the 12 days of Christmas.
The earliest mention of December 25 as Jesus’ birthday comes from a mid-fourth-century Roman almanac that lists the death dates of various Christian bishops and martyrs. The first date listed, December 25, is marked: natus Christus in Betleem Judeae: “Christ was born in Bethlehem of Judea … ” So, almost 300 years after Jesus was born, we finally find people observing his birth in mid-winter.”
Bottom line: Nobody knows for sure why Dec. 25 is celebrated as Christmas.
Here’s a little more history, this on the non-religious figure of Santa Claus. According to the St. Nicholas Center (whose Web site has a subtitle: “Discovering the Truth About Santa Claus”), the character known today as Santa originated with a man named Nicholas said to have been born in the third century A.D. in the village of Patara, then Greek and now Turkish. It is said his parents died when he was young and that the religious Nicholas, who was raised by his uncle, was left a fortune. Ordained as a priest, he used his money to help others and become a protector of children, performing miracles to help them. He was, the center says, persecuted by Roman Emperor Diocletian and buried in 343 A.D. in a church, where a substance with healing powers, called manna, formed in his grave. The day of his death, Dec. 6, became a day of celebration.
How did this man seen as a saint become Santa Claus, the one with the red suit and white beard? The St. Nicholas Center says Europeans honored him as a saint over the centuries, while St. Nicholas was brought to the New World by Columbus, who named a Haitian port for him in 1492.  According to the center:
After the American Revolution, New Yorkers remembered with pride their colony’s nearly-forgotten Dutch roots. John Pintard, the influential patriot and antiquarian who founded the New York Historical Society in 1804, promoted St. Nicholas as patron saint of both society and city. In January 1809, Washington Irving joined the society and on St. Nicholas Day that same year, he published the satirical fiction, Knickerbocker’s History of New York, with numerous references to a jolly St. Nicholas character. This was not the saintly bishop, rather an elfin Dutch burgher with a clay pipe. These delightful flights of imagination are the source of the New Amsterdam St. Nicholas legends: that the first Dutch emigrant ship had a figurehead of St. Nicholas; that St. Nicholas Day was observed in the colony; that the first church was dedicated to him; and that St. Nicholas comes down chimneys to bring gifts. Irving’s work was regarded as the “first notable work of imagination in the New World.”
The New York Historical Society held its first St. Nicholas anniversary dinner on December 6, 1810. John Pintard commissioned artist Alexander Anderson to create the first American image of Nicholas for the occasion. Nicholas was shown in a gift-giving role with children’s treats in stockings hanging at a fireplace. The accompanying poem ends, “Saint Nicholas, my dear good friend! To serve you ever was my end, If you will, now, me something give, I’ll serve you ever while I live.”
….1821 brought some new elements with publication of the first lithographed book in America, the Children’s Friend. This “Sante Claus” arrived from the North in a sleigh with a flying reindeer. The anonymous poem and illustrations proved pivotal in shifting imagery away from a saintly bishop. Sante Claus fit a didactic mode, rewarding good behavior and punishing bad, leaving a “long, black birchen rod . . . directs a Parent’s hand to use when virtue’s path his sons refuse.” Gifts were safe toys, “pretty doll . . . peg-top, or a ball; no crackers, cannons, squibs, or rockets to blow their eyes up, or their pockets. No drums to stun their Mother’s ear, nor swords to make their sisters fear; but pretty books to store their mind with knowledge of each various kind.” The sleigh itself even sported a bookshelf for the “pretty books.” The book also notably marked S. Claus’ first appearance on Christmas Eve, rather than December 6th.
Then, in 1823, the poem “A Visit from St. Nicholas,” later known as “The Night Before Christmas,” became popular, and the modern version of the plump Santa started to become established, what his sleigh led by reindeer and the chimney as his delivery system. By the 1920s, a jolly red-suited Santa was depicted in drawings of Norman Rockwell and other illustrators, and by the 1950s, he was portrayed as a gentle gift-giving character. That Santa became the one kids in the United States and other parts of the world know today, though in many other countries, St. Nicholas — not Santa — is still celebrated, as well.

I had a friend talk to me many years ago about Santa. An overly religious friend. The person told me, that Santa was actually Satan trying to take away from Jesus at Christmas. I said, "How do you figure that?" The friend went on to explain. "If you take the letter "T" in Santa and put it in front of the first letter "A" Then take the letter "N" and put it at the end, what do you have…Satan of course."
I thought my friend was rather deluded and lost their marbles. A concept I had never thought of and still don't believe to this day. I love Santa. 

Was Nicholas real? The bottom line from the Web site on Santa:
Some say St. Nicholas existed only in legend, without any reliable historical record. Legends usually do grow out of real, actual events, though they may be embellished to make more interesting stories. Many of the St. Nicholas stories seem to be truth interwoven with imagination. However, [certain] facts of the life of St. Nicholas could contain some part of historical truth. They provide a clear sense of his personal characteristics which are further elaborated in other narratives.
(You can read about those “facts” here in a piece titled “Was St. Nicholas a Real Person?”)
So there you have it. Some history of Christmas you may not have known before. If you made it this far, now you do.
Story courtesy of Valerie Strauss. (with exception to the Satan translation above [bold italics], which is mine).
Chris Turner
December 24, 2017.