Saturday, August 30, 2008

Ooooooh, barracuda

With apologies to Heart....I could have sworn I overheard Senator Obama say:

So this aint the end
I saw you again today on CNN
I had to turn my aides away
Smiled like the sun -
This is for real
And tales - it never fails!

You lying so low in the artic freeze
I bet you gonna ambush me
Youd have me down down down on my knees
Now wouldn't you, barracuda?

In overtime we were all
Trying to free
Campaign 08' from Hillary
No right no wrong, selling our shame
A name, whisper game

If the real thing will do the trick
We'd better come up with something quick
You gonna burn burn burn us to the wick
Ooooooh, barracuda?

Sell me sell you Joe Biden said
Dive down deep or our cause is dead
Yeah...I think I got the blues too

All that night and all the next
Campaigned without looking back
Made for the polls - silly polls!

If the real thing will do the trick
We'd better come up with something quick
You gonna burn burn burn us to the wick
Oooooooh, barra barracuda


Lifesite News on Governor Palin:

Pro-life groups excited over McCain's choice:

Vatican warns of growing Christianophobia

According to Reuters in an article which may be found here, Archbishop Dominique Mamberti, the Vatican's foreign minister, warned that Christianophobia* is a growing problem around the world and it must be fought with the same determination as anti-Semitism or Islamophobia. The Archbishop made his remarks in the wake of attacks against Christians throughout India which have left at least 13 dead this past week.

Readers of this Blog will recall how I called upon Keene State College to issue an apology for an offensive remark against the Catholic Church made by Mr. Henry Knight, the Director of the Cohen Center for Holocaust Studies. See here.

Archbishop Mamberti is right. Christianophobia is indeed a growing problem. I have received numerous hateful comments at this Blog as well as emails because of my opposition to homosexuality, an opposition which is rooted in Divine Revelation and Natural Law. This even though I insist (with the Church) that homosexual persons must be treated with respect and compassion.

Hatred comes in many forms, in many disguises. And sincere Christians will always oppose such hatred. No matter which face it happens to be wearing.
Related reading, priest describes horror of anti-Christian attacks in India:
And numerous Catholic schools close to protest the anti-Christian attacks:
And for more on the Cohen Center controversy, see here.
* The "Europe for Christ" network has launched a website from Vienna to explain what Christianophobia is and to describe how Europeans have experienced it. The website:

Friday, August 29, 2008

McCain chooses pro-life woman

Alaska governor Sarah Palin, who also opposes same-sex "marriage," to be first female Republican vice presidential nominee.

Thursday, August 28, 2008

Archbishop Chaput: "Nobody wants a theocracy.."

In an interview with Zenit which may be found here, Archbishop Charles Chaput is quoted as having said: "..Catholics have always been a minority in the United States, and prejudice against Catholics in this country has always been real, even before the founding. Sometimes the bias has been indirect and genteel. Just as often it has taken more vulgar forms of economic and political discrimination, and media bigotry. Either way, prejudice always fuels the appetite of a minority to fit in, to achieve and to assimilate, and American Catholics have done that extraordinarily well -- in fact, too well.

In the name of being good citizens, a lot of Catholics have bought into a very mistaken idea of the “separation of Church and state.” American Catholics have always supported the principle of keeping religious and civil authority distinct. Nobody wants a theocracy, and much of the media hand-wringing about the specter of “Christian fundamentalism” is really just a particularly offensive scare tactic. The Church doesn’t presume to run the state. We also don’t want the state interfering with our religious beliefs and practices -- which, candidly, is a much bigger problem today.

Separating Church and state does not mean separating faith and political issues. Real pluralism requires a healthy conflict of ideas. In fact, the best way to kill a democracy is for people to remove their religious and moral convictions from their political decision-making. If people really believe something, they’ll always act on it as a matter of conscience. Otherwise they’re just lying to themselves. So the idea of forcing religion out of public policy debates is not only unwise, it’s anti-democratic."

Of course, when the Archbishop says that "nobody wants a theocracy," he is referring to people of good will and not cultists or other fanatics who express their support for coercion and who routinely employ the techniques of degradation.

Because many Episcopal Conferences throughout the Church had expressed a growing concern over the activity of sects, new religious movements and cults, the Secretariat for Promoting Christian Unity prepared a report entitled Sects or New Religious Movements: A Pastoral Challenge which was issued in the name of several departments of the Holy See and released on May 3, 1986. The Departments represented were the Vatican Secretariat for Promoting Christian Unity, the Secretariat for Non-Christians, the Secretariat for Non-Believers, the Pontifical Council for Culture and the Secretariat of State.Question one of the report stated that, "For practical reasons, a cult or sect is sometimes defined as ‘any religious group with a distinctive worldview of its own derived from, but not identical with, the teachings of a major world religion. As we are speaking here of special groups which usually pose a threat to people’s freedom and to society in general, cults and sects have also been characterized as possessing a number of distinctive features. These often are that they [groups] are often authoritarian in structure, that they exercise forms of brainwashing and mind control, that they cultivate group pressure and instill feelings of guilt and fear, etc.

The basic work on these characteristic marks was published by an American, Dave Breese, Know the Marks of Cults (Victor Books, Wheaton, IL, 1985). While cults engage in coercion and various forms of manipulation to win and maintain adherents, the Catholic Church, by way of contrast, teaches that:"..the human person has a right to religious freedom. Freedom of this kind means that all men should be immune from coercion on the part of individuals, social groups and every human power, so that, within due limits, nobody is forced to act against his convictions in religious matters in private or in public, alone or in association with others. The Council further declares that the right to religious freedom is based on the very dignity of the human person, as known by the revealed word of God, and by reason itself" (Declaration on Religious Liberty - Dignitatis Humanae, No. 2 of the Second Vatican Council).

And again:"It is in accordance with their dignity that all men, because they are persons - that is, beings endowed with reason and free will and therefore bearing personal responsibility, are both impelled by their nature and bound by a moral obligation to seek the truth, especially religious truth. They are also bound to adhere to the truth, once they come to know it and to direct their whole lives in accordance with the demands of truth. But, men cannot satisfy this obligation in a way that is in keeping with their own nature unless they enjoy both psychological freedom and immunity from external coercion....The search for truth, however, must be carried out in a manner that is appropriate to the dignity of the human person and his social nature, namely, by free inquiry with the help of teaching or instruction, communication and dialogue. It is by these means that men share with each other the truth they have discovered, or think they have discovered, in such a way that they help one another in the search for truth. Moreover, it is by personal assent that men must adhere to the truth they have discovered" (Dignitatis Humanae, Nos. 2, 3).

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

A New Flood

"For whom the Lord loves he reproves, and he chastises the son he favors. " (Proverbs 3:12).

In a previous post (which may be found here), I wrote: "A girl in the Ukraine was reportedly told by the Blessed Mother that, 'The present times are worse than at the time of Noah. Then the world was scourged by a deluge of water; now the world is going to be scourged by a deluge of fire.' (Apparition of Our Lady to Anna at Seredne, December 20, 1954).

Many prophecies of recent years have referred to terrible damage which will result from fire and lightning. After the Great Flood, God promised that He would not destroy the world again by water - although this does not mean that no country or region will suffer from extensive floods or tidal waves. It means that God will not permit the entire world to be destroyed by a worldwide flood. But we read in 2 Peter 3: 3-7, that: ' the last days scoffers will come to scoff, living according to their own desires and saying, 'Where is the promise of his coming? From the time when our ancestors fell asleep, everything has remained as it was from the beginning of creation.' They deliberately ignore the fact that the heavens existed of old and earth was formed out of water and through water by the word of God; through these the world that then existed was destroyed, deluged with water. The present heavens and earth have been reserved by the same word for fire, kept for the day of judgment and of destruction of the godless.'

There are, no doubt, even many Catholics who find this too difficult to believe. Such people insist that a loving God would never chastise His people. This even though Sacred Scripture indicates otherwise and St. Faustina was told by Our Lord that, "In the Old Covenant I sent prophets wielding thunderbolts to My people. Today I am sending you with My mercy to the people of the whole world. I do not want to punish aching mankind, but I desire to heal it, pressing it to My Merciful Heart. I use punishment when they themselves force Me to do so; My hand is reluctant to take hold of the sword of justice. Before the Day of Justice I am sending the Day of Mercy.."

But what about all this talk of another flood, this time a flood of fire? Surely only a fringe Catholic or doomsday-fanatic would believe such a thing to be possible, right? Wrong.

How many of you have even read Pope John Paul II's Encyclical Letter Dives in Misericordia (Rich in Mercy)?

John Paul the Great reminds us (with a sense of urgency which is actually a bit alarming to those who are spiritually awake), " no time and in no historical period-especially at a moment as critical as our own-can the Church forget the prayer that is a cry for the mercy of God amid the many forms of evil which weigh upon humanity and threaten it. Precisely this is the fundamental right and duty of the Church in Christ Jesus, her right and duty towards God and towards humanity. The more the human conscience succumbs to secularization, loses its sense of the very meaning of the word 'mercy,' moves away from God and distances itself from the mystery of mercy, the more the Church has the right and the duty to appeal to the God of mercy 'with loud cries.'

These 'loud cries' should be the mark of the Church of our times, cries uttered to God to implore His mercy, the certain manifestation of which she professes and proclaims as having already come in Jesus crucified and risen, that is, in the Paschal Mystery. It is this mystery which bears within itself the most complete revelation of mercy, that is, of that love which is more powerful than death, more powerful than sin and every evil, the love which lifts man up when he falls into the abyss and frees him from the greatest threats.

Modern man feels these threats. What has been said above in this regard is only a rough outline. Modern man often anxiously wonders about the solution to the terrible tensions which have built up in the world and which entangle humanity. And if at times he lacks the courage to utter the word 'mercy,' or if in his conscience empty of religious content he does not find the equivalent, so much greater is the need for the Church to utter his word, not only in her own name but also in the name of all the men and women of our time.

Everything that I have said in the present document on mercy should therefore be continually transformed into an ardent prayer: into a cry that implores mercy according to the needs of man in the modern world. May this cry be full of that truth about mercy which has found such rich expression in Sacred Scripture and in Tradition, as also in the authentic life of faith of countless generations of the People of God. With this cry let us, like the sacred writers, call upon the God who cannot despise anything that He has made, the God who is faithful to Himself, to His fatherhood and His love. And, like the prophets, let us appeal to that love which has maternal characteristics and which, like a mother, follows each of her children, each lost sheep, even if they should number millions, even if in the world evil should prevail over goodness, even if contemporary humanity should deserve a new "flood" on account of its sins, as once the generation of Noah did.

Let us have recourse to that fatherly love revealed to us by Christ in His messianic mission, a love which reached its culmination in His cross, in His death and resurrection. Let us have recourse to God through Christ, mindful of the words of Mary's Magnificat, which proclaim mercy "from generation to generation." Let us implore God's mercy for the present generation. May the Church which, following the example of Mary, also seeks to be the spiritual mother of mankind, express in this prayer her maternal solicitude and at the same time her confident love, that love from which is born the most burning need for prayer.

Let us offer up our petitions, directed by the faith, by the hope, and by the charity which Christ has planted in our hearts. This attitude is likewise love of God, whom modern man has sometimes separated far from himself, made extraneous to himself, proclaiming in various ways that God is "superfluous." This is, therefore, love of God, the insulting rejection of whom by modern man we feel profoundly, and we are ready to cry out with Christ on the cross: 'Father, forgive them; for they know not what they do.' At the same time it is love of people, of all men and women without any exception or division: without difference of race, culture, language, or world outlook, without distinction between friends and enemies. This is love for people-it desires every true good for each individual and for every human community, every family, every nation, every social group, for young people, adults, parents, the elderly-a love for everyone, without exception. This is love, or rather an anxious solicitude to ensure for each individual every true good and to remove and drive away every sort of evil.

And, if any of our contemporaries do not share the faith and hope which lead me, as a servant of Christ and steward of the mysteries of God, to implore God's mercy for humanity in this hour of history, let them at least try to understand the reason for my concern. It is dictated by love for man, for all that is human and which, according to the intuitions of many of our contemporaries, is threatened by an immense danger. The mystery of Christ, which reveals to us the great vocation of man and which led me to emphasize in the encyclical Redemptor hominis his incomparable dignity, also obliges me to proclaim mercy as God's merciful love, revealed in that same mystery of Christ. It likewise obliges me to have recourse to that mercy and to beg for it at this difficult, critical phase of the history of the Church and of the world, as we approach the end of the second millennium." Dives in Misericordia, No. 15).

Archbishop Charles Chaput on Democrats...

The Denver Archbishop said that Democrats simply don't know Christianity if they insist on continuing to spin the Bible's teachings on abortion. Chaput told the Associated Press that Senator Biden should refrain from taking Communion because of his support for abortion.

Related reading:

Tuesday, August 26, 2008

John Sharpe, who appeared at the 2008 Saint Benedict Center Conference, "explains" 911

In an article entitled "Islam vs. the West: Is This Another Crusade," John Sharpe (who appeared as a guest speaker at the 2008 Saint Benedict Center Conference in Nashua, New Hampshire), has this to say:

"The current and historical mortal enemy of Christian civilization is Judeo-Masonry. There can be no doubt about this fact from an analysis [of] history, both recent, and that which dates from the time of Our Lord. Islam is a sideshow, albeit a powerful and vigorous one, to the main drama. It has been a tool of Jewry and may in fact be so in this case."

Islam is a tool of "Jewry"? Sharpe goes on to suggest that:

"There is nothing to suggest that bin Laden, assuming he is the guilty party – or whoever is responsible for the attacks of 9-11 – considered the attacks to be an assault on the West, insofar as it is the uniquely Christian West...

As we’ve said here before, even the most superficial analysis of the targets of the attacks would suggest that the U.S.-dominated world political and financial order was the object of attack. Hardly strongholds of Christianity...

In truth, there is no longer a Christian West to attack. To suggest that the US of A is the last bastion of Christian civilization is a sad mockery of the truth. It has been a greater Israel for many years; the rise of Hollywood, Wall Street, the Fed, and Roosevelt’s State and Treasury departments assured that."


In other words, for John Sharpe, the United States was attacked by Islamic terrorists because it is simply "a greater Israel," an extension of the State of Israel.

Mr. Philip Lawler, author of The Faithful Departed, also attended the Saint Benedict Center Conference as a guest speaker. Where does he stand on the 911 attacks? Does he agree with Mr. Sharpe that Islam is a "tool of Jewry"? Why has he not publically distanced himself from the Saint Benedict Center? Does Mr. Lawler believe, as "Brother" Andre Marie has asserted, that the Jewish People "undermine public morality"?

Why the silence?

Related reading:

Saturday, August 23, 2008

Spreading the Gospel of Hate at HCCNS

Note: It would appear that an individual or individuals have been posting attacks against my person at the Holy Cross Cardinal Newman Society website [operated by Mr. Vic Melfa, Diocese of Worcester, Massachusetts] because I have questioned Mr. Philip Lawler [author of The Faithful Departed] as to why he attended the 2008 Saint Benedict Center Conference in Nashua, New Hampshire as a guest speaker - the Saint Benedict Center, which is based out of Richmond, New Hampshire, has been listed as an anti-Semitic hate group by the Southern Poverty Law Center and has been featured on the television program Chronicle.

Comments have also been left at the HCCNS website promoting the work of E. Michael Jones and the publication Culture Wars.

For this reason, I would encourage readers of this Blog to visit an excellent Blog authored by Mr. Matthew Anger, a freelance Catholic journalist who has contributed to the Latin Mass Magazine:

Mr. Anger explains:

"Jones may differ superficially from the hard-core racialist anti-Semites in that his Jewish fixation is "religious." But all this really does is to make hatred palatable to people who might have some remaining Christian scruples. It is hardly surprising that Jones' message is admired by virulent racists like the Vanguard News Network (see the post of "Shamir on the Jewish Question," reprinted from Jones' Culture Wars, September 2005). In 2004, the Catholic League issued a forthright expose of E. Michael Jones' soft-sell anti-Semitism in The Catalyst ("Playing Fast and Loose With Theology," July-August 2004)."

Senator Biden and Catholic teaching...

It's official. Senator Obama has chosen Senator Joe Biden (a man who professes to be Catholic) as his running mate. Since the Senator from Pennsylvania professes to be Catholic, it is important to discern whether or not he is a Catholic in fact or simply in name.

In an article published in the Christian Science Monitor and entitled "A frank and abiding faith," Senator Biden (who supports Roe v. Wade) is quoted as having said: "My views are totally consistent with Catholic social doctrine...there are elements within the Church who say that if you are at odds with any of the teachings of the Church, you are at odds with the Church. I think the Church is bigger than that...I was raised at a time when the Catholic Church was fertile with new ideas [read dissenting ones] and open discussion [e.g., Curran et al openly dissenting from Humanae Vitae] about some of the basic social teaching of the Catholic Church...questioning was not criticized, it was encouraged." (View article here).

Notice the contradiction here? First the Senator asserts that his views are "totally consistent" with Catholic doctrine but then argues that one is not necessarily "at odds with the Church" if one is "at odds with any of the teachings of the Church." Apparently Senator Biden never studied logic at University.

In his Apostolic Letter Motu Proprio Ad Tuendam Fidem (Joe probably doesn't have a copy), Pope John Paul II wrote:

"To protect the faith of the Catholic Church against errors arising from certain members of the Christian faithful, especially from among those dedicated to the various disciplines of sacred theology, we, whose principal duty is to confirm the brethren in the faith (Lk 22:32), consider it absolutely necessary to add to the existing texts of the Code of Canon Law and the Code of Canons of the Eastern Churches, new norms which expressly impose the obligation of upholding truths proposed in a definitive way by the Magisterium of the Church, and which also establish related canonical sanctions....

Canon 750 of the Code of Canon Law will now consist of two paragraphs; the first will present the text of the existing canon; the second will contain a new text. Thus, canon 750, in its complete form, will read:

Canon 750 – § 1. Those things are to be believed by divine and catholic faith which are contained in the word of God as it has been written or handed down by tradition, that is, in the single deposit of faith entrusted to the Church, and which are at the same time proposed as divinely revealed either by the solemn Magisterium of the Church, or by its ordinary and universal Magisterium, which in fact is manifested by the common adherence of Christ’s faithful under the guidance of the sacred Magisterium. All are therefore bound to avoid any contrary doctrines.

§ 2. Furthermore, each and everything set forth definitively by the Magisterium of the Church regarding teaching on faith and morals must be firmly accepted and held; namely, those things required for the holy keeping and faithful exposition of the deposit of faith; therefore, anyone who rejects propositions which are to be held definitively sets himself against the teaching of the Catholic Church."

Elements within the Church? Try Canon Law Joe.

On abortion, the Senator is quoted as having said, "I don't think I have the right to impose my view - on something I accept as a matter of faith - on the rest of society." We're all familiar with this particular approach to the question of abortion, first employed with success by Mario Cuomo. Of course, the argument is illogical since every piece of legislation presupposes a world view or morality. To those who say, "You cannot legislate morality" I answer that we legislate nothing else.

What does the Church have to say about Senator Biden's argument? In his Encyclical Letter Evangelium Vitae, Nos. 68-70, Pope John Paul II teaches us that:

" is claimed that civil law cannot demand that all citizens should live according to moral standards higher than what all citizens themselves acknowledge and share. Hence the law should always express the opinion and will of the majority of citizens and recognize that they have, at least in certain extreme cases, the right even to abortion and euthanasia. Moreover the prohibition and the punishment of abortion and euthanasia in these cases would inevitably lead-so it is said-to an increase of illegal practices: and these would not be subject to necessary control by society and would be carried out in a medically unsafe way. The question is also raised whether supporting a law which in practice cannot be enforced would not ultimately undermine the authority of all laws.

Finally, the more radical views go so far as to maintain that in a modern and pluralistic society people should be allowed complete freedom to dispose of their own lives as well as of the lives of the unborn: it is asserted that it is not the task of the law to choose between different moral opinions, and still less can the law claim to impose one particular opinion to the detriment of others. (68).

In any case, in the democratic culture of our time it is commonly held that the legal system of any society should limit itself to taking account of and accepting the convictions of the majority. It should therefore be based solely upon what the majority itself considers moral and actually practices. Furthermore, if it is believed that an objective truth shared by all is de facto unattainable, then respect for the freedom of the citizens-who in a democratic system are considered the true rulers-would require that on the legislative level the autonomy of individual consciences be acknowledged. Consequently, when establishing those norms which are absolutely necessary for social coexistence, the only determining factor should be the will of the majority, whatever this may be. Hence every politician, in his or her activity, should clearly separate the realm of private conscience from that of public conduct.

As a result we have what appear to be two diametrically opposed tendencies. On the one hand, individuals claim for themselves in the moral sphere the most complete freedom of choice and demand that the State should not adopt or impose any ethical position but limit itself to guaranteeing maximum space for the freedom of each individual, with the sole limitation of not infringing on the freedom and rights of any other citizen. On the other hand, it is held that, in the exercise of public and professional duties, respect for other people's freedom of choice requires that each one should set aside his or her own convictions in order to satisfy every demand of the citizens which is recognized and guaranteed by law; in carrying out one's duties the only moral criterion should be what is laid down by the law itself. Individual responsibility is thus turned over to the civil law, with a renouncing of personal conscience, at least in the public sphere. (69).

At the basis of all these tendencies lies the ethical relativism which characterizes much of present-day culture. There are those who consider such relativism an essential condition of democ- racy, inasmuch as it alone is held to guarantee tolerance, mutual respect between people and acceptance of the decisions of the majority, whereas moral norms considered to be objective and binding are held to lead to authoritarianism and intolerance. But it is precisely the issue of respect for life which shows what misunderstandings and contradictions, accompanied by terrible practical consequences, are concealed in this position.

It is true that history has known cases where crimes have been committed in the name of "truth". But equally grave crimes and radical denials of freedom have also been committed and are still being committed in the name of "ethical relativism". When a parliamentary or social majority decrees that it is legal, at least under certain conditions, to kill unborn human life, is it not really making a "tyrannical" decision with regard to the weakest and most defenceless of human beings?
Everyone's conscience rightly rejects those crimes against humanity of which our century has had such sad experience. But would these crimes cease to be crimes if, instead of being committed by unscrupulous tyrants, they were legitimated by popular consensus?

Democracy cannot be idolized to the point of making it a substitute for morality or a panacea for immorality. Fundamentally, democracy is a "system" and as such is a means and not an end. Its "moral" value is not automatic, but depends on conformity to the moral law to which it, like every other form of human behaviour, must be subject: in other words, its morality depends on the morality of the ends which it pursues and of the means which it employs. If today we see an almost universal consensus with regard to the value of democracy, this is to be considered a positive "sign of the times", as the Church's Magisterium has frequently noted. But the value of democracy stands or falls with the values which it embodies and promotes. Of course, values such as the dignity of every human person, respect for inviolable and inalienable human rights, and the adoption of the "common good" as the end and criterion regulating political life are certainly fundamental and not to be ignored.

The basis of these values cannot be provisional and changeable "majority" opinions, but only the acknowledgment of an objective moral law which, as the "natural law" written in the human heart, is the obligatory point of reference for civil law itself. If, as a result of a tragic obscuring of the collective conscience, an attitude of scepticism were to succeed in bringing into question even the fundamental principles of the moral law, the democratic system itself would be shaken in its foundations, and would be reduced to a mere mechanism for regulating different and opposing interests on a purely empirical basis." (70).

Senator Biden doesn't believe that a pro-abortion stance renders one ineligible to receive Holy Eucharist. But he is simply wrong. The Catechism of the Catholic Church, No. 1395, teaches that: "The Eucharist is properly the sacrament of those who are in full communion with the Church." This is the Magisterial teaching of the Church.

In the words of Joseph Cardinal Ratzinger:

1. Presenting oneself to receive Holy Communion should be a conscious decision, based on a reasoned judgment regarding one’s worthiness to do so, according to the Church’s objective criteria, asking such questions as: "Am I in full communion with the Catholic Church? Am I guilty of grave sin? Have I incurred a penalty (e.g. excommunication, interdict) that forbids me to receive Holy Communion? Have I prepared myself by fasting for at least an hour?" The practice of indiscriminately presenting oneself to receive Holy Communion, merely as a consequence of being present at Mass, is an abuse that must be corrected (cf. Instruction "Redemptionis Sacramentum," nos. 81, 83).

2. The Church teaches that abortion or euthanasia is a grave sin. The Encyclical Letter Evangelium vitae, with reference to judicial decisions or civil laws that authorize or promote abortion or euthanasia, states that there is a "grave and clear obligation to oppose them by conscientious objection. [...] In the case of an intrinsically unjust law, such as a law permitting abortion or euthanasia, it is therefore never licit to obey it, or to 'take part in a propaganda campaign in favour of such a law or vote for it’" (no. 73). Christians have a "grave obligation of conscience not to cooperate formally in practices which, even if permitted by civil legislation, are contrary to God’s law. Indeed, from the moral standpoint, it is never licit to cooperate formally in evil. [...] This cooperation can never be justified either by invoking respect for the freedom of others or by appealing to the fact that civil law permits it or requires it" (no. 74).

3. Not all moral issues have the same moral weight as abortion and euthanasia. For example, if a Catholic were to be at odds with the Holy Father on the application of capital punishment or on the decision to wage war, he would not for that reason be considered unworthy to present himself to receive Holy Communion. While the Church exhorts civil authorities to seek peace, not war, and to exercise discretion and mercy in imposing punishment on criminals, it may still be permissible to take up arms to repel an aggressor or to have recourse to capital punishment. There may be a legitimate diversity of opinion even among Catholics about waging war and applying the death penalty, but not however with regard to abortion and euthanasia.

4. Apart from an individual's judgment about his worthiness to present himself to receive the Holy Eucharist, the minister of Holy Communion may find himself in the situation where he must refuse to distribute Holy Communion to someone, such as in cases of a declared excommunication, a declared interdict, or an obstinate persistence in manifest grave sin (cf. can. 915).

5. Regarding the grave sin of abortion or euthanasia, when a person’s formal cooperation becomes manifest (understood, in the case of a Catholic politician, as his consistently campaigning and voting for permissive abortion and euthanasia laws), his Pastor should meet with him, instructing him about the Church’s teaching, informing him that he is not to present himself for Holy Communion until he brings to an end the objective situation of sin, and warning him that he will otherwise be denied the Eucharist.

6. When "these precautionary measures have not had their effect or in which they were not possible," and the person in question, with obstinate persistence, still presents himself to receive the Holy Eucharist, "the minister of Holy Communion must refuse to distribute it" (cf. Pontifical Council for Legislative Texts Declaration "Holy Communion and Divorced, Civilly Remarried Catholics" [2002], nos. 3-4). This decision, properly speaking, is not a sanction or a penalty. Nor is the minister of Holy Communion passing judgment on the person’s subjective guilt, but rather is reacting to the person’s public unworthiness to receive Holy Communion due to an objective situation of sin.

[N.B. A Catholic would be guilty of formal cooperation in evil, and so unworthy to present himself for Holy Communion, if he were to deliberately vote for a candidate precisely because of the candidate’s permissive stand on abortion and/or euthanasia. When a Catholic does not share a candidate’s stand in favour of abortion and/or euthanasia, but votes for that candidate for other reasons, it is considered remote material cooperation, which can be permitted in the presence of proportionate reasons.] (Worthiness to Receive Holy Communion, General Principles).
Related reading: Biden on the life issues.

Friday, August 22, 2008

"They have become walking corpses.."

In a locution to Fr. Stephano Gobbi given on March 10, 1977, Our Lady said that, "..some priests have become nothing but ministers of the world and live according to the world. For prayer they have substituted a feverish activity; for mortification, the constant seeking after comfort and pleasures; for holiness, a progressive yielding to sin, especially impurity [see here], which is becoming more and more committed and justified. They have become walking corpses, whitened sepulchres who still call themselves priests, but whom my Son Jesus no longer recognizes as such. And these are indeed sometimes the most esteemed, those who have succeeded in achieving success and those who have been placed in positions of responsibility....Those who have remained faithful are generally the most persecuted, the most ignored, and sometimes intentionally ostracized. Thus the darkness spreads, and the smoke of Satan seeks to cover everything; each day the apostasy grows greater."

"If the world hates you, realize that it hated me first. If you belonged to the world, the world would love its own; but because you do not belong to the world, and I have chosen you out of the world, the world hates you. Remember the word I spoke to you, 'No slave is greater than his master.' If they persecuted me, they will also persecute you. If they kept my word, they will also keep yours. And they will do all these things to you on account of my name, because they do not know the one who sent me." (John 15: 18-21).

Thursday, August 21, 2008

The present times are worse than at the time of Noah

A girl in the Ukraine was reportedly told by the Blessed Mother that, "The present times are worse than at the time of Noah. Then the world was scourged by a deluge of water; now the world is going to be scourged by a deluge of fire." (Apparition of Our Lady to Anna at Seredne, December 20, 1954).

Many prophecies of recent years have referred to terrible damage which will result from fire and lightning. After the Great Flood, God promised that He would not destroy the world again by water - although this does not mean that no country or region will suffer from extensive floods or tidal waves. It means that God will not permit the entire world to be destroyed by a worldwide flood. But we read in 2 Peter 3: 3-7, that: " the last days scoffers will come to scoff, living according to their own desires and saying, 'Where is the promise of his coming? From the time when our ancestors fell asleep, everything has remained as it was from the beginning of creation.' They deliberately ignore the fact that the heavens existed of old and earth was formed out of water and through water by the word of God; through these the world that then existed was destroyed, deluged with water. The present heavens and earth have been reserved by the same word for fire, kept for the day of judgment and of destruction of the godless."

If we are spiritually awake and able to look behind the deceptive facade of our society, we quickly discern that while we may look civilized [and some of us really are], our barbarism is every bit as real and every bit as evil as that of the hordes of Genghis Khan or the Third Reich. Like the Nazis, we attempt to cloak the genocide we commit [ the genocide of abortion] in euphemistic terminology. The Nazis referred to their genocide of the Jewish People as the "Final Solution." We refer to our genocide of the unborn as "reproductive freedom" and "choice" in a satanic effort to legitimize the killing of these innocents.

We believe that God will continue to bless America as we slaughter the innocents and disregard His Commandments. Our Lady said at Fatima that, "The sin that leads most souls to hell are sins of the flesh." This is why Our Lady asked the three children at Fatima to do penances which were very difficult for their age, in order to help save souls. And this after she showed them a vision of fiery Hell, with souls falling into it like snowflakes but burning as embers. It is most significant that Our Lady said this at a time when the revolution against sexual purity and morality was nothing like it is today. Think on that for a moment. Think very carefully what it portends for our present day world which Our Lady described as being "worse than at the time of Noah."

If things are really that bad [and they are, we have Our Lady's word on it as well as our own spiritual senses - if they are still awake], why is it that so many of our priests are remaining silent? When we consider the genocide of abortion and other sins associated with lust: contraception, fornication, self-mutilation, incest, child abuse, homosexuality, lesbianism, pornography and other unnatural practices such as bestiality, the facade begins to crumble and we begin to realize that Our Lady is right. Our time is worse than at the time of Noah.

Pope St. Pius X, a Pope who possessed many charismatic gifts, said that, "The present wickedness of the world is only the beginning of sorrows which must take place before the end of the world. Humanity is in the grip of a supreme crisis." What will be the fate of those who refuse the Mercy of God* and who prefer to live according to their own desires? In the words of Blessed Anna Maria Taigi, "All the enemies of the Church, known and unknown, will perish all over the world during the universal darkness, with the exception of a few who will be converted."
* "Let the greatest sinners place their trust in My mercy. They have the right before others to trust in the abyss of My mercy. My daughter, write about My mercy towards tormented souls. Souls that make an appeal to My mercy delight Me. To such souls I grant even more graces than they ask. I cannot punish even the greatest sinner if he makes an appeal to My compassion, but on the contrary, I justify him in My unfathomable and inscrutable mercy. Write: before I come as a just Judge, I first open wide the door of My mercy. He who refuses to pass through the door of My mercy must pass through the door of My justice..." (Our Lord to St. Faustina, Divine Mercy in My Soul, 1146).

Wednesday, August 20, 2008

"..he does not belong to our group.."

"John said to him, 'Teacher, we saw someone driving out demons in your name, and we tried to prevent him because he does not belong to our group.' Jesus replied, 'Do not prevent him. There is no one who performs a mighty deed in my name who can at the same time speak ill of me. For whoever is not against us is for us.'" (Mark 9: 38-40).

How often this sad scene is repeated in parishes throughout the Church. As I mentioned in a previous post here at La Salette Journey: "an editorial which appeared in The Catholic Free Press said that, 'We the people...make up the we share, we can contribute to a revival which can fill the pews" and, "..the Body of Christ is healthiest when it has all its members, you included. Maybe, as you share your time, talent and treasure, you will help keep another parish from closing...More importantly, maybe you'll bring still more people to Christ and his Body - those who never knew him, those who've wandered away, or members of the next generation just waiting to learn of him from your lips and lives.'

Nice words. But we must give more than lip service to them. Just recently, I attended a parish meeting in Fitchburg where I proposed the idea of creating a parish website with the aim of reaching out to young people [who spend much time on the internet] and those who have 'wandered away' from the Church. The laity in attendance all applauded at this suggestion. The pastor asked me whether I would be willing to undertake such a project. I immediately responded in the affirmative and was given the green light to proceed with the pastor having assured all those present that he doesn't 'micro-manage' when he delegates a project to be accomplished.

Long story short, when certain individuals at this parish* learned of my orthodoxy and commitment to the Magisterial teaching of the Church, a meeting was held [one which I was not invited to attend], the project was quickly scrapped and I was told in an email. When I wrote the pastor about this and a retired Deacon as well, I received no response.."

In this week's Catholic Free Press, there is an article on parish websites entitled, "Parish web sites open up new windows" which highlights the usefulness of these sites and how they can be a great source of information. Which is one reason I suggested the idea to begin with.

But I wasn't welcome. I did not belong to a select group. I was considered an "outsider."

Jesus said that whoever does not gather with Him scatters. I wonder if this is understood by the people who deemed me unworthy of participating in the life of the parish?

* St. Joseph's Parish in Fitchburg.

Friday, August 15, 2008

The Flight from God: Where will it lead?

In his powerful classic entitled, "The Flight from God," the eminent Swiss philosopher Max Picard writes: "In every age man has been in flight from God. What distinguishes the Flight to-day from every other flight is this: once Faith was the universal, and prior to the individual; there was an objective world of Faith, while the Flight was only accomplished subjectively, within the individual man. It came into being through the individual man's separating himself from the world of Faith by an act of decision. A man who wanted to flee had first to make his own flight. The opposite is true to-day. The objective and external world of Faith is no more; it is Faith which has to be remade moment by moment through the individual's act of decision, that is to say, through the individual's cutting himself off from the world of the Flight. For to-day it is no longer Faith which exists as an objective world, but rather the Flight; for every situation into which man comes is from the beginning, without his making it so, plainly a situation of flight, since everything in this world exists only in the form of the Flight." (The Flight from God, Gateway Editions, 1951, pp.1-2).

Picard goes on to explain in this critically important work that, "The man of the Flight cannot bear the feeling that there is one thing and one thing only: the Flight. He needs something wholly other, something, now threatening, now friendly, which is above him, like a heaven beneath which he can make his journey...This is Art...The very existence of Art in a sphere of its own already means that it is 'wholly other,' and from the beginning it is other than reality itself. The strange thing about Art is that a work of art is indeed made by man, but that once it is made it stands there independently of man. This gives it a semblance of otherness." (The Flight from God, pp. 138-139).

This is of the utmost importance for "modern man" as he flees from his God Who is Wholly Other. Nature abhors a vacuum after all. And so, in his flight from the Divine Other, man in the flight substitutes "Art" for the Divine Being as the Wholly Other." Picard explains that the cinema " the perfect Flight" and that here is where "men may learn how best to flee." For this reason, "..cinemas are everywhere erected, examples of the Flight. The figures on the screen are fashioned only for the Flight, they are disembodied. Like one in a hurry who drops his luggage, the figures have laid down their bodily substance somewhere in the background, while they themselves make off in the foreground of the screen, outlines only of their bodies. Sometimes they are still for a moment, looking backwards fearfully, as if there was one who pursued them. Alas, it is only a game, they do but pretend to be afraid. No one can reach them, these things without being. And now, as if they want to fool the one who pursues them, they move more slowly, they even translate a movement which ought o be fast into a slow one; they demonstrate slowness in the Flight, so sure are they that nothing can reach them, these things without being. Here in the cinema it is as if there were no more men, as if the real men were somewhere in safety, had for long been in safety, and as if these shadows had been left behind simply to flee in place of the real men. They only pretend to be in flight and even the men who sit in front of the screen in order to gaze at the shadows there seem nothing but dummies, arranged to complete the illusion,while the real men have long since departed." (pp. 8-9).

Dr. Von Hildebrand was right when he said that, "Modern man has lost that consciousness of being a creature which even the pagan possessed, and he lives in the illusion that by his own powers he can transform the world into a terrestrial paradise." (The New Tower of Babel, Sophia Institute Press, 1994, p. 21).

Having decided against God, "modern man" has embraced the Flight. This flight from the Divine Other has led to the decline of man's confidence in the powers of human reason to attain reality and truth. Man in the Flight has concluded today that all truth is relative. In the same way that Pilate asked Our Lord, "What is truth?" and hastened in his flight to the judgment-hall without waiting for an answer (John 18:38), so "modern man," in his embrace of relativism, joins the flight without any thought of inquiring for the truth. Instead, he settles for illusion, rejecting the permanent authority of truth as founded by the Divine Other in reality, reason and revelation while setting himself up as the autonomous source of all truth:"Before Christ's second coming the Church must pass through a final trial that will shake the faith of many believers. The persecution that accompanies her pilgrimage on earth will unveil the 'mystery of iniquity' in the form of a religious deception offering men an apparent solution to their problems at the price of apostasy from the truth. The supreme religious deception is that of the Antichrist, a pseudo-messianism by which man glorifies himself in place of God and of his Messiah come in the flesh." (Catechism of the Catholic Church, 675).

The Antichrist is behind the Flight, urging "modern man" to hasten in his Flight and not to look back. How will this Flight end? In the words of Romano Guardini:"One day the Antichrist will come: a human being who introduces an order of things in which rebellion against God will attain its ultimate power. He will be filled with enlightenment and strength. The ultimate aim of all aims will be to prove that existence without Christ is possible - nay rather, that Christ is the enemy of existence, which can be fully realized only when all Christian values have been destroyed. His arguments will be so impressive, supported by means of such tremendous power - violent and diplomatic, material and intellectual - that to reject them will result in almost insurmountable scandal, and everyone whose eyes are not opened by grace will be lost. Then it will be clear what the Christian essence really is: that which stems not from the world, but from the heart of God; victory of grace over the world; redemption of the world, for her true essence is not to be found in herself, but in God, from whom she has received it. When God becomes all in all, the world will finally burst into flower." (The Lord, p. 513).

Are we not approaching the Reign of Antichrist? "Modern man" strives to build a godless world where he is subject to no one but himself. Having eliminated God from this world, "modern man" deifies and absolutizes himself. Having rejected his place as a creature dependent upon God, "modern man" is moving, "..not toward divinity, but toward dehumanizing, toward the destruction of being itself through through the destruction of truth. The Jacobin variant of the idea of a rebellion against being human in itself, rebellion against truth, and that is why it leads people - as Sartre percipiently observed - into a self-contradictory existence that we call hell." (Joseph Cardinal Ratzinger, Truth and Tolerance, p. 248).

Thursday, August 14, 2008

Miracles among us

Not long ago I called for prayer for a little girl named Rachel Lee from Ashburnham Massachusetts who had been diagnosed with cancer. Rachel Lee has gone to be with the Lord. Her funeral service was held yesterday at St. Joseph's Parish in Cleghorn (Fitchburg). The Sentinel & Enterprise had a beautiful story on this precious child and her zest for life. Although very sick, Rachel Lee never complained or succumbed to fear or depression.

Often, we become so used to the miraculous that we take it for granted. At each and every Holy Mass, bread and wine are transformed into the Body, Blood, Soul and Divinity of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. And yet, so many spend their time looking for statues that weep tears or a sun that spins in the afternoon sky. Not that those things don't happen or that they are not edifying. But the really spectacular miracles are all around us and most people never stop to reflect on this.

Recall the words of Jesus, "Amen, I say to you, unless you turn and become like children, you will not enter the kingdom of heaven." (Matthew 18:3). Children stand in awe before the miraculous. They do not take it for granted. They trust with a simple faith.

In yesterday's Sentinel & Enterprise article, one woman lamented that they had been hoping for a miracle right up to the end. But this is really to miss the point isn't it? Jesus didn't fail to provide us with a miracle. He answered our prayers with the most magnificent miracle we could imagine. And her name was Rachel Lee.

Pray for us little one. That we too may become like children and inherit the Kingdom of Heaven.

Rachel Lee's website:

Wednesday, August 13, 2008

Was Mr. Lawler aware?

When Mr. Philip Lawler agreed to speak at the 2008 Saint Benedict Center Conference, was he aware that another guest speaker, Lt. Cmdr John Sharpe, founded IHS Press in September of 2001 with an individual named Derek Holland? Was he aware, as Mr. Matthew Anger has documented at his Blog Fringe Watch, that "Derek Holland, through the ITP [International Third Position], is associated with the Neo-Nazi Geman NPD (Nationaldemokratische Partei Deutschlands)" and that "Holland spoke at their events in 1999 and 2000"?

Was Mr. Lawler aware that "..the NPD is also linked to al-Qaeda via Ahmed Huber, a Swiss extremist who converted to Islam in the 1960s"?*

Let's hope not.

* Source:

Sunday, August 10, 2008

Philip Lawler wasn't the only guest speaker at the 2008 Saint Benedict Center Conference

Catholic author Philip Lawler wasn't the only guest speaker at the 2008 Saint Benedict Center Conference. Another guest speaker was Catholic author Gary Potter, who has referred to the Holocaust as the "so-called Holocaust" See here: Still another guest speaker was Dr. Robert Hickson. Dr. Hickson, a graduate of the U.S. Military Academy, West Point, served as Chairman of the Literature and Latin Department at Christendom College for seven years.

According to the Adelaide Institute, Dr. Hickson has expressed his belief that:

"It would be illuminating to understand the influences and motivation behind what has been called not just our (USA) 'messianic foreign policy', but our"apocalyptic foreign policy". The 'Protestant Christian Zionists' are certainly a significant influence in this direction, basing their political-military views on their 'dispensationalist theology' and rather stark views about 'the end of times', although 'the chosen of God' will purportedly be 'raptured out' before 'the Armageddon comes' and then their 'Messiah will return'. Moreover, there are certain segments of Jews who are striving to (re)build 'the Third Temple of Jerusalem', which would require the prior desecration and destruction of the mosque, and likely produce an enormous war, if not even more serious devastations. Does [there] exist any possibility to escape from this laborious insanity, which indeed, may end up in the transformation of the planet Earth into a subsequent belt of asteroids turning around the Sun? I propose to look once again at information I quoted at the beginning of this lecture...

[The] Chinese discovered America already in 1241, and despite their technical supremacy, they did not engage in its conquest. All these mentioned above, ultra potent 'groupies', pushing for the creation of 'New Global Israel', consider themselves to be heirs of these Hebrew 'pious' (Chassidic) gangsters-idiots, always in search for new occasions to suck and to wreck subsequent nations and territories. But for me all these Bushes, Wolfowitzes, Libermans and their "cabal", conspicuously resemble to these Chinese high War Commanders and financial tycoons, who 500 hundred years ago formed the super potent Eunuch's Party at the Court of the Empire of the Middle. And Chinese have managed somehow to scale down the sterile, anti-zoological - which means, hostile to our senso-motorial development - ambitions of this early version of the present World Eunuch's Party of Conquest." (Source:

And what is the Adelaide Institute? Wikipedia provides us with an answer: "Established in 1994, the Adelaide Institute was formed from the former Truth Mission that was established in 1993 by Dr. Gerald Fredrick Toben. The Adelaide Institute is a Holocaust denial group in Australia and is considered to be anti-Semitic by Australian and international human rights groups...The Institute has also been implicated in distributing Holocaust denials through mainstream and alternative publications...The Institutes stated goal is exposing "the Holocaust myth."

Also, according to Wikipedia:

"The Institute's website drew the attention of the Australian Human Rights and Equal Opportunity Commission (HREOC) in 2000. HREOC found that the Adelaide Institute had breached section 18C of the Racial Discrimination Act by publishing material on the website, the consequences of which were "vilificatory, bullying, insulting and offensive" to the Jewish population; HREOC ordered Töben to close the site and apologise to the people he had offended. Because rulings of the HREOC are not enforceable at law, the case was also brought before the Federal Court of Australia, which ordered in 2002 that certain material be removed from the Adelaide Institute web site.

The Order of the Federal Court of Australia was that the Adelaide Institute should remove from its website any material which conveys one or any of the following imputations:

there is serious doubt that the Holocaust occurred

it is unlikely that there were homicidal gas chambers at Auschwitz

Jewish people who are offended by and challenge Holocaust denial are of limited intelligence

some Jewish people, for improper purposes, including financial gain, have exaggerated the number of Jews killed during World War II and the circumstances in which they were killed

It has been noted by human rights organisations that the Institute has failed to fully comply with the order of the Federal Court of Australia and still publishes materials that it was ordered to remove in the 2002 judgement." (Source:

I'll ask the question again: Why did Mr. Philip Lawler attend the 2008 Saint Benedict Center Conference as a guest speaker?

Related reading:

Thursday, August 07, 2008

"To heal this intellectual pride..."

"You are a puff of smoke that appears briefly and then disappears." (James 4: 14).

"All mankind is grass, and all their glory like the flower of the field. The grass withers, the flower wilts, when the breath of the Lord blows upon it...Though the grass withers and the flower wilts, the word of our God stands forever." (Isaiah 40: 6-8).

Sound advice and spiritual wisdom from a holy and learned priest:

"Pride is to be avoided, that pride of intellect which is more dangerous and more difficult to overcome than the pride of will, as Scupoli says.

This is the pride that renders faith and obedience to superiors difficult. One wants to be self-sufficient; the more confidence one has in one's own judgment the more reluctantly does one accept the teachings of faith, or the more readily does one submit these to criticism and to personal interpretation. In like manner, one so trusts to one's own wisdom, that it is with repugnance that others are consulted, especially superiors. Hence, regrettable mistakes occur. Hence comes also obstinacy of judgment, resulting in the final and sweeping condemnation of such opinions as differ from our own. Herein lies one of the most common causes of strife between Christian and Christian, at times even between Catholic writers. St. Augustine calls those who cause unfortunate dissensions, destructive of peace and of the bond of charity, 'Dividers of unity, enemies of peace, without charity, puffed up with vanity, well pleased with themselves and great in their own eyes.'*

To heal this intellectual pride: 1) we must first of all submit ourselves with childlike docility to the teachings of faith. We are undoubtedly allowed to seek that understanding of our dogmas which is obtained by a patient and laborious quest with the aid of the Fathers and Doctors of the Church, especially St. Augustine and St. Thomas; but as the Vatican Council says, this must be done with piety and with discretion, following the maxim of St. Anselm: 'Faith seeking understanding.' Thus we avoid that hypercritical attitude that attenuates and minimizes our dogmas under pretense of explaining them. We submit our judgment not only to the truths of faith but to the directions of the Holy See.." (Fr. Adolphe Tanquerey, S.S., D.D., The Spiritual Life: A Treatise on Ascetical and Mystical Theology, p. 388, Tan Books).

Words to live by. The Church is Mater et Magistra. Mother and Teacher. She teaches us with the authority of Jesus Christ Himself. Our job as Catholic Christians is to remain docile to her teaching. It is not our role to "correct" Christ Who teaches us through His Mystical Body the Church. You and I are a blade of grass, a puff of smoke, here today and gone tomorrow. We must know our place if we are not to fall into intellectual pride. We are only useless servants. If we promote and defend the Church's teaching we will win the prize. But we must say what Jesus told us to say. I am only a useless servant. I have only done my duty. And we must fully appreciate that fact and not just give it lip service. While we are very important to Jesus and He loves us with a love we will never fully understand let alone appreciate, in the scheme of things we just aren't that important. And we never will be. This is wisdom.

* Sermo III Paschae, n. 4.

An important and related post over at Defend the Faith - JayG's excellent Blog:

Tuesday, August 05, 2008

Priest gets ten years for abusing three teens

"Underwood's victims recalled a lively, larger-than-life priest who took them on trips and befriended their families. One former altar boy, speaking for the prosecution, recalled the priest saying that sexual intimacy between two males was acceptable because that's what Jesus and his 12 disciples did for pleasure while they wandered the desert." - Arizona Daily Star.

Prophecy of venerable Bartholomew Holzhauser (17th century, Germany):

"During this period, many men will abuse the freedom of conscience conceded to them. It is of such men that Jude, the Apostle, spoke when he said: 'These men blaspheme- whatever they do not understand; and they corrupt whatever they know naturally as irrational animals do. . . They feast together without restraint, feeding themselves, grumbling murmurers, walking according to their lusts; their mouth speaketh proud things, they admire people for the sake of gain; they bring about division, sensual men, having not the spirit.

During this unhappy period, there will be laxity in divine and human precepts. Discipline will suffer. The Holy Canons will be completely disregarded, and the Clergy will not respect the laws of the Church. Everyone will be carried away and led to believe and to do what he fancies, according to the manner of the flesh.

They will ridicule Christian simplicity; they will call it folly and nonsense, but they will have the highest regard for advanced knowledge, and for the skill by which the axioms of the law, the precepts of morality, the Holy Canons and religious dogmas are clouded by senseless questions and elaborate arguments. As a result, no principle at all, however holy, authentic, ancient, and certain it may be, will remain free of censure, criticism, false interpretations, modification and delimitation by man.

These are evil times, a century full of dangers and calamities. Heresy is everywhere, and the followers of heresy are in power almost everywhere. Bishops, prelates, and priests say that they are doing their duty, that they are vigilant, and that they live as befits their state in life. In like manner, therefore, they all seek excuses. But God will permit a great evil against His Church: Heretics and tyrants will come suddenly and unexpectedly; they will break into the Church while bishops, prelates, and priests are asleep. They will enter Italy and lay Rome waste; they will burn down the churches and destroy everything."(Yves Dupont, Catholic Prophecy,Tan Books and Publishers, 1973).

Sunday, August 03, 2008

"..are you trying to teach us?"

For years I have been explaining to my readers why Fr. Leonard Feeney's rigid interpretation of Extra Ecclesiam nulla salus is wrong and what the Church actually teaches regarding that defined dogma. Recently I asked Mr. Philip Lawler (who has posted a comment here) if he accepts the Church's interpretation of the dogma since he presents Fr. Leonard Feeney [in his book The Faithful Departed] as a priest who was "discouraged" by Archbishop Cushing for simply "energetically" defending a defined dogma. That post may be found here.

George Weigel, in his column this week entitled "And the summer reading list is...," recommends Mr. Lawler's book, describing it as "right on the mark" (I would agree) but adds a caveat (in the same way Fr. Neuhaus did in his review): "I can't agree with Phil's assessment of Father Leonard Feeney's draconian interpretation of the ancient theological maxim, 'No salvation outside the Church.."

Now, this is precisely what I've been saying. However, I have received hateful comments at this Blog which attempt to defend Mr. Lawler's revisionist spin on Fr. Feeney as well as his attendance at the 2008 Saint Benedict Center Conference in Nashua, New Hampshire, which is conducted by an organization which has no affiliation with the Roman Catholic Church and has been listed as an anti-Semitic hate group. This group promotes Fr. Feeney's rigid interpretation of the dogma. At the Holy Cross Cardinal Newman Society website, I was criticized. Several anonymous individuals explained to me how sinful and ignorant I am and asked me who I think I am to question Mr. Lawler or to teach him anything. I'm not exactly sure who I have to be to do so.

I am reminded of the account of Jesus' healing of a blind man in the Gospel of John, Chapter 9 verses 24-40:

"So a second time they called the man who had been blind and said to him, "Give God the praise! We know that this man is a sinner." He replied, "If he is a sinner, I do not know. One thing I do know is that I was blind and now I see." So they said to him, "What did he do to you? How did he open your eyes?" He answered them, "I told you already and you did not listen. Why do you want to hear it again? Do you want to become his disciples, too?" They ridiculed him and said, "You are that man's disciple; we are disciples of Moses! We know that God spoke to Moses, but we do not know where this one is from." The man answered and said to them, "This is what is so amazing, that you do not know where he is from, yet he opened my eyes. We know that God does not listen to sinners, but if one is devout and does his will, he listens to him. It is unheard of that anyone ever opened the eyes of a person born blind. If this man were not from God, he would not be able to do anything." They answered and said to him, "You were born totally in sin, and are you trying to teach us?" Then they threw him out. When Jesus heard that they had thrown him out, he found him and said, "Do you believe in the Son of Man?" He answered and said, "Who is he, sir, that I may believe in him?" Jesus said to him, "You have seen him and the one speaking with you is he." He said, "I do believe, Lord," and he worshiped him. Then Jesus said, "I came into this world for judgment, so that those who do not see might see, and those who do see might become blind." Some of the Pharisees who were with him heard this and said to him, "Surely we are not also blind, are we?" Jesus said to them, "If you were blind, you would have no sin; but now you are saying, 'We see,' so your sin remains*."



* "Therefore, let them who in grave peril are ranged against the Church seriously bear in mind that after 'Rome has spoken' they cannot be excused even by reasons of good faith. Certainly, their bond and duty of obedience toward the Church is much graver than that of those who as yet are related to the Church 'only by an unconscious desire.' Let them realize that they are children of the Church, lovingly nourished by her with the milk of doctrine and the sacraments, and hence, having heard the clear voice of their Mother, they cannot be excused from culpable ignorance, and therefore to them apply without any restriction that principle: submission to the Catholic Church and to the Sovereign Pontiff is required as necessary for salvation." - From a Letter of the Sacred Congregation of the Holy Office to Archbishop Cushing given on August 8, 1949 regarding Fr. Leonard Feeney and his followers and their refusal to listen to Rome.

Saturday, August 02, 2008

In good standing?

An individual identifying himself as "RC," and who claims to co-author a Blog with Wanderer columnist Pete Vere, left a comment at this Blog in which he said, "..if they [the Saint Benedict Center in Richmond, New Hampshire] ever claim to be a canonical religious community, then that's an imposture and it's wrong. I won't go so far as to accuse anyone of doing that because I don't know what canonical status they claim for their MICM group."

Now, while the Saint Benedict Center asserts that, "We, in Richmond, have never made a claim of having canonical status as a religious house of the Diocese of Manchester," (source: still, as Roger Vaste has noted:

"Eugene R. De Lalla, one of the group's more vocal members in the past, stated the following at the Keene Sentinel Talkback forum on January 5, 2007: 'Funny, how liberals and the anti-Catholics (and let's face it, that's what is going on here!) seem to "tolerate" the bizarre and their own twisted views, but when it comes to SBC -- a Catholic organization in good standing with Rome (surprise!) catering to ALL those of good will, the true intolerance surfaces..'

How can the SBC be "a Catholic organization in good standing with Rome" without having obtained canonical status? In order for an organization to be able to claim that it is both "Catholic" and "in good standing with Rome," that organization must have canonical status. That would seem to represent imposture. But don't expect RC or his associates to acknowledge this fact."

The Diocese of Manchester has said that the Saint Benedict Center has no relationship with the Roman Catholic Church. But a prominent member of this organization [or at least one who has been very vocal in the organization's defense] has made the claim that they are in "good standing with Rome." Interesting no?

The question remains: Why did Philip Lawler attend the 2008 Saint Benedict Center Conference as a guest speaker? Does he believe as well that they are in "good standing with Rome"?

Related reading:

Friday, August 01, 2008

The hour is coming...

"Jesus said to her, 'Believe me, woman, the hour is coming when you will worship the Father neither on this mountain nor in Jerusalem. You people worship what you do not understand; we worship what we understand, because salvation is from the Jews.." (John 4: 21, 22).

"We shall never understand the maniacal, world-wide seizure of anti-Semitism unless we transpose the terms. It is of Christ that the Nazi-Fascists are afraid; it is in his omnipotence that they believe; it is he that they are determined madly to obliterate. But the names of Christ and Christianity are too overwhelming, and the habit of submission to them is too deeply ingrained after centuries and centuries of teaching. Therefore they must, I repeat, make their assault on those who were responsible for the birth and spread of Christianity. They must spit on the Jews as the ‘Christ-killers’ because they long to spit on the Jews as the Christ-givers." (Maurice Samuel, The Great Hatred. New York, 1940).

"Spiritually we are Semites" - Pope Pius XI.
Site Meter