Category Archives: History


Brother Francis has a tremendous appreciation for the history of the Church. He likes to call Church history “the laboratory of wisdom.” Why? Because the history of the Church is the history of human salvation, and choosing the best means to save one’s soul is the highest prudence. And prudence, says St. Thomas Aquinas, is wisdom in action.

History is the laboratory of wisdom, but the application today of the lessons learned from history is prudence.

How, for example, are we to understand what St. Pius X meant when he said that “modernism is the synthesis of all heresies,” if we are ignorant of the history of the Church’s battles against heresy? How are we to evaluate the causes of what Pope Benedict referred to a “crisis of Faith,” if we unfamiliar with any of the twenty ecumenical councils that preceded Vatican II?

There are twenty-two books of the Bible that are history books: the first nineteen of the Old Testament, the two books of Machabees, which end the Old Testament, and the Acts of the Apostles in the New.

A knowledge of Church History is a knowledge of the life of the Body of Christ extended in time throughout the past twenty centuries. It is a glorious history, with its martyrs, confessors, saints of the desert, great doctors and popes, apostles of nations, proliferation of contemplative orders, active orders, teaching orders, advances in science, medicine, the arts, missionary life, and victories over the enemies of true religion, who engaged her by pen and sword.

Without a knowledge of history, of its facts, dates, and events, a Catholic is ill-prepared to defend the Church against those who would gainsay her by misrepresentation, misinformation, or deliberate disinformation. Nor can we forget that we all have an obligation to instruct the ignorant who have been misled by error and who, in their hearts, nurture an affinity for the truth.

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Reconquest of Cordoba by Fernando III of Castile, 1236

This video is narrated by Mr. J Stephen Roberts, who will be my guest on the next Reconquest. (Real Crusades History) In the early 1230’s, while the Almohads were locked in civil war, Fernando III of Castile and Leon, a truly outstanding king in history, gathered his army and Crusaded to win some of the most dramatic gains in the history of the long Reconquista of … More →

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The Catholic Strategic Response to “Undo 1492!”

The following essay by Dr. Robert Hickson appeared in APROPOS magazine in the Christmas issue 2004 # 23. The publisher of APROPOS was the late Anthony Fraser, son of Hamish Fraser. Dr. Hickson gave us permission to publish it on our website. ______________________________ We will get Granada back! It was some time between late 1966 and mid-1967 — but before the Israeli Six-Day War in … More →

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1646: Our Lady’s Victory Over the Dutch Fleet in the Philippines

The Divine Flame: In 1646, when the Philippines was still under the colonial rule of Spain, fifteen Dutch armed-strong fleet battled against two Spanish galleons in five naval encounters, known in history as the Battles of La Naval. Read the account here. Share, Bookmark, Like: Facebook, Twitter, etc.

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Campaign to Undo “Crusader” Mascots From Sport Teams

Catholic Answers, Steven Weidenkopf: Deep faith and love in Jesus and his Church were the primary motivators for the vast majority of Crusaders. An understanding of the Crusades that is based on viewing these events through the eyes of the participants and rooted in authentic scholarship leads one to embrace the name “Crusader” as a mascot/nickname. Crusaders were faith-filled warriors, willing to sacrifice their fortune, … More →

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The Crusades: Just Wars?

[How and when to listen to my show, ‘Reconquest.’ Also: Listen to past episodes.] A typical catalogue of the supposed historical crimes of the Catholic Church — or of Western men in general — would include the Crusades and the Spanish Inquisition. Just as the latter has its received history, known as the Black Legend, that provides the modern “thinking man” with his talking points, … More →

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Spanish Carlism: An Introduction

Editor’s note: This paper originally appeared in the book, A Catholic Witness in our Time: A Festschrift in Honor of Dr. Robert Hickson. It is published here with the gracious permission of that book’s publishers. The subject of Carlism is treated elsewhere on this site in Eleonore Villarrubia’s piece Dios, Patria, Fueros, y Rey: The Story Of The Spanish Carlistas. We are privileged now to … More →

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Pelayo and the Dawn of the Reconquista, 715-722

Another video from Real Crusades History, “Pelayo and the Dawn of the Reconquista, 715-722”: Share, Bookmark, Like: Facebook, Twitter, etc.

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Obama’s Comments on the Crusades

My posting of this is not entirely timely, but is still worth it. From J. Stephen Roberts of Real Crusades History comes this refutation of B.H. Obama’s fatuous statements about the Crusades. The video is at the bottom of this posting, after the description Mr. Roberts provided. Make sure to read his last paragraph (the “clarification” if you’re going to watch the video). At the National Prayer … More →

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England and Always: Imperium et Libertas?

“England and Always” The British, the Empire, and the Faith Part VI: Imperium et Libertas? His column was five thousand strong—all mounted men—and guns: There met, beneath the world-wide flag, the world-wide Empire’s sons; They came to prove to all the earth that kinship conquers space, And those who fight the British Isles must fight the British race! From far New Zealand’s flax and fern, … More →

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The Crime that Led to U.S. Defeat in Vietnam

The majority of today’s Americans aren’t old enough to have an adult memory of the Vietnam War from its beginning in the 1960s to the Communists’ victory in 1975. However, most everybody is aware, even if it has never been and never will be officially acknowledged, that it was in Vietnam that the U.S. met its first defeat in a foreign war. Why were we … More →

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Don Pelayo Starts the Reconquest

In the year 711, the Visigothic Kingdom of Spain fell to the invading Umayyad Muslim forces. This was due to the fateful victory of the Berber commander Ṭāriq ibn Ziyad, over Visigothic forces in the Battle of Guadalete. Spain’s monarch, King Rodrigo, was either killed in that battle or perhaps escaped to what is now Portugal. Either way, his tomb was found in Spain’s Iberian … More →

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Introduction to the Saint Augustine Institute of Wisdom

The Saint Augustine Institute of Wisdom* (SAI) is the educational division of Saint Benedict Center. The Institute provides well-rounded and conveniently simple courses of instruction in Catholic thought. The classes available through SAI are a continuation of the studies which have been offered at Saint Benedict Center since 1942. Our teachers are the Popes, the Councils, the Saints, the Fathers and Doctors of the Church, … More →

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Catholic Albion Before It Was England and After, Until Henry

Joseph Pearce, The Imaginative Conservative: It is often forgotten that the Catholic presence in England is older than England itself. From the martyrdom of St. Alban in the early fourth century, under the Roman occupation, the land has been blessed with a host of Catholic saints. After the Romans left the land that they called Albion, a faithful remnant of Christians kept the Faith alive … More →

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Forty Years After Franco’s Death

A young American male traveling in Spain in the early 1960s, as I was and did, would notice that women did not sunbathe topless on the country’s beaches the way many did on the French Riviera. There weren’t even any bikinis. An American who lived in the country explained to me that the body-covering one-piece swimsuits I saw everywhere were “required.” I was also told … More →

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England and Always: Romance and Religion

“England and Always” The British, the Empire, and the Faith Part V: Romance and Religion The splendour falls on castle walls And snowy summits old in story: The long light shakes across the lakes, And the wild cataract leaps in glory. Blow, bugle, blow, set the wild echoes flying, Blow, bugle; answer, echoes, dying, dying, dying. –Alfred, Lord Tennyson Inspired by Sir Walter Scott and … More →

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