Monday, October 31, 2005

Still more on Fr. Aquino: Courtesy of Worcester Voice

Click once on image to enlargen.


Fr. Aquino placed on administrative leave

This report is taken from Worcester Voice:

Monday October 31, 2005

Fr. James Aquino placed on administrative leave by Worcester Bishop Robert McManus.

Fr. James Aquino pastor of Our Lady of Loreto Parish and Director of the Permanent Diaconate Program has been placed on administrative leave effective this past weekend by Worcester Bishop Robert McManus.

Bishop McManus told parishioners of Our Lady of Loreto, due to information that was released last week Fr Aquino has been removed as pastor as well as Director of the Permanent Diaconate Program

Fr. James Aquino had been the subject of Lewd conduct and obstruction charges in Las Vegas.

October 21, 2004, two undercover Las Vegas police officers, who paid an 8 dollar admission fee, while in an Adult book store and theater, observed Fr. James Aquino engaging in lewd conduct in a place open to the public.

Worcester Bishop McManus had replied earlier in an October 17, 2005 letter to VOTF Victim support coordinator Mr. Daniel Dick, 'It is in light of the above information that I have made my pastoral judgment concerning Fr Aquino being suitability for ministry in the Worcester Dioceses'. Within the Letter was a copy of a letter from Fr Aquino's lawyer which claimed the charges against Fr Aquino were false and subsequently dismissed by the Justice Court of Las Vegas.

When reviewed, actual documentation in Fr Aquino's case such as the police citation, police arrest report and Las Vegas court docket, show there is no evidence that Father Aquino was falsely charged.

John Ansley

Sunday, October 30, 2005

A reading from the Prophecy of Malachi, "FutureChurch" and the Man of Sin

Today's first reading is from the prophecy of Malachi"

"I am a great King, says the Lord of hosts, and my name is feared throughout the nations. And now, priests, this warning is for you. If you do not listen, if you do not find it in your heart to glorify my name, says the Lord of hosts, I will send the curse on you and curse your very blessing. You have strayed from the way; you have caused many to stumble by your teaching. You have destroyed the covenant of Levi, says the Lord of hosts. And so I in my turn have made you contemptible and vile in the eyes of the whole people in repayment for the way you have not kept to my paths but have shown partiality in your administration. Have we not all one Father? Did not one God create us? Why, then, do we break faith with one another, profaning the covenant of our ancestors? (Mal 1:14 - 2:8-10).

Haven't we seen yet another fulfillment of this ancient prophecy? Many priests have strayed from the way and have caused many to stumble by their teaching. And more than 1 billion dollars has been spent to settle abuse cases within the Catholic Church in the United States alone: a figure which highlights, but does not do justice to, the countless lives shattered spiritually, emotionally and physically by priests who have strayed from the way and who have been delivered up to various lusts (see Romans 1). Our Lord spoke of such men:

"...whoever causes one of these little ones who believe in me to sin, it would be better for him to have a great millstone fastened round his neck and to be drowned in the depth of the sea." (Matthew 18:5-6).

Advocates of FutureChurch, a church to be built in the image and likeness of man, a church which will prepare the way for the Man of Sin and which will be a true home for him, are now attempting to put a positive spin on these facts as related by Patrick Buchanan:

An index of Catholicism's decline
A review by Pat Buchanan
As the Watergate scandal of 1973-1974 diverted attention from the far greater tragedy unfolding in Southeast Asia, so, too, the scandal of predator-priests now afflicting the Catholic Church may be covering up a far greater calamity.

Thirty-seven years after the end of the only church council of the 20th century, the jury has come in with its verdict: Vatican II appears to have been an unrelieved disaster for Roman Catholicism. Liars may figure, but figures do not lie. Kenneth C. Jones of St. Louis has pulled together a slim volume of statistics he has titled Index of Leading Catholic Indicators: The Church Since Vatican II. His findings make prophets of Catholic traditionalists who warned that Vatican II would prove a blunder of historic dimensions, and those same findings expose as foolish and naive those who believed a council could reconcile Catholicism and modernity. When Pope John XXIII threw open the windows of the church, all the poisonous vapors of modernity entered, along with the Devil himself. Here are Jones's grim statistics of Catholicism's decline:

Priests. While the number of priests in the United States more than doubled to 58,000, between 1930 and 1965, since then that number has fallen to 45,000. By 2020, there will be only 31,000 priests left, and more than half of these priests will be over 70.

Ordinations. In 1965, 1,575 new priests were ordained in the United States. In 2002, the number was 450. In 1965, only 1 percent of U.S. parishes were without a priest. Today, there are 3,000 priestless parishes, 15 percent of all U.S. parishes.

Seminarians. Between 1965 and 2002, the number of seminarians dropped from 49,000 to 4,700, a decline of over 90 percent. Two-thirds of the 600 seminaries that were operating in 1965 have now closed.

Sisters. In 1965, there were 180,000 Catholic nuns. By 2002, that had fallen to 75,000 and the average age of a Catholic nun is today 68. In 1965, there were 104,000 teaching nuns. Today, there are 8,200, a decline of 94 percent since the end of Vatican II.

Religious Orders. For religious orders in America, the end is in sight. In 1965, 3,559 young men were studying to become Jesuit priests. In 2000, the figure was 389. With the Christian Brothers, the situation is even more dire. Their number has shrunk by two-thirds, with the number of seminarians falling 99 percent. In 1965, there were 912 seminarians in the Christian Brothers. In 2000, there were only seven.

The number of young men studying to become Franciscan and Redemptorist priests fell from 3,379 in 1965 to 84 in 2000.

Catholic schools. Almost half of all Catholic high schools in the United States have closed since 1965. The student population has fallen from 700,000 to 386,000. Parochial schools suffered an even greater decline. Some 4,000 have disappeared, and the number of pupils attending has fallen below 2 million -- from 4.5 million.

Though the number of U.S. Catholics has risen by 20 million since 1965, Jones' statistics show that the power of Catholic belief and devotion to the Faith are not nearly what they were.

Catholic Marriage. Catholic marriages have fallen in number by one-third since 1965, while the annual number of annulments has soared from 338 in 1968 to 50,000 in 2002.

Attendance at Mass. A 1958 Gallup Poll reported that three in four Catholics attended church on Sundays. A recent study by the University of Notre Dame found that only one in four now attend.

Only 10 percent of lay religious teachers now accept church teaching on contraception. Fifty-three percent believe a Catholic can have an abortion and remain a good Catholic. Sixty-five percent believe that Catholics may divorce and remarry. Seventy-seven percent believe one can be a good Catholic without going to mass on Sundays. By one New York Times poll, 70 percent of all Catholics in the age group 18 to 44 believe the Eucharist is merely a "symbolic reminder" of Jesus.

At the opening of Vatican II, reformers were all the rage. They were going to lead us out of our Catholic ghettos by altering the liturgy, rewriting the Bible and missals, abandoning the old traditions, making us more ecumenical, and engaging the world. And their legacy?

Four decades of devastation wrought upon the church, and the final disgrace of a hierarchy that lacked the moral courage of the Boy Scouts to keep the perverts out of the seminaries, and throw them out of the rectories and schools of Holy Mother Church.

Through the papacy of Pius XII, the church resisted the clamor to accommodate itself to the world and remained a moral beacon to mankind. Since Vatican II, the church has sought to meet the world halfway.

Jones' statistics tell us the price of appeasement.

This article is taken from

One of these "FutureChurch" advocates, Fr. Dennis A. Broussard, pastor of St. Francis of Assisi Parish in Litchfield, was quoted in the Manchester Union Leader as having said that: "In terms of Catholic spirituality, we are going from adolescence to adulthood collectively. In our tradition, in many ways...we were children." (October 30, 2005 edition, article entitled "Catholic Church 'at a crossroads' - Future Church, reshaping the Diocese of Manchester).

Dr. Dietrich Von Hildebrand, who was described by Pope Pius XII as "..the 20th- century Doctor of the Church," would disagree with Fr. Broussard. In his book entitled, "Trojan Horse in the City of God," Dr. Von Hildebrand wrote that, "Incessantly we hear today the self-satisfied slogan, 'Man has finally come of age.' Yet there are so many features of the present epoch - the dethronement of truth by historical relativism, the fetishization of science, the devastation of our lives as a result of the laboratory view, and many others - that make it more than doubtful that modern man has really and truly come of age. There is, moreover, something inherently self-deceptive in the very idea.

It is a characteristic symptom of immaturity to feel oneself more mature and independent than men of previous times, to forget what one owes the past, and, in a kind of adolescent self-assertion, to refuse any assistance. One need only recall Dostoyevsky's masterly description of the puberty crisis - Kolya Krassotkin in The Brothers Karamazov, Hypolit in The Idiot, the hero of The Adolescent - to grasp the special immaturity of the man who is convinced of his superior maturity, who thinks that in him humanity has in a unique way come of age, who is dominated by one preoccupation - to show his independence. His ludicrous smallness is manifest as he looks down on everything passed on through tradition, even the most timeless values.

The illusion of an historic coming of age is not the exclusive possession of our epoch. In the period of the so-called Enlightenment, man also felt themselves to have come of age and looked down on former times as periods of darkness and immaturity. This illusion is a recurring phenomenon in social history and it bears a striking resemblance to the puberty crisis in the life of the individual person. But the contemporary assertion that whereas this perennial boast was never before justified, it is now really true makes its self-serving character all the more clear.

One of the many indications of the intellectual and moral immaturity of the present age is the fact that the percentage of worthless books and articles that captivate the minds of intellectuals seems greater today than in any other time in history." (pp.143-144).

It is always nothing short of amazing when a Catholic priest of today can ignore the facts presented by the Index of Leading Catholic Indicators (not to mention the abuse crisis within the Church) and even assert that, "we are going from adolescence to adulthood collectively." The words of Soren Kierkegaard seem prophetic on this score: "Having refused to use their freedom of thought, men claim freedom of speech as compensation."

Again, Dr. Von Hildebrand reminds us that: "This temporal parochialism - this feeling above others who are not living in the same historical epoch - performs the same psychological function that pride in Aryan descent performed for many Germans during the National Socialist epoch. The most insignificant German, suddenly exalted by the mere fact that he was of pure Aryan descent, could now look down on the most gifted intellectual who happened to have a Jewish grandmother. There is a general tendency in human nature to seek such compensations for inferiority or to look for ways of 'putting oneself up' in pride...This epochalism existed in former times just as did nationalism, yet the revolt against tradition is especially strong today.."

And why is this revolt against tradition stronger than ever today? Dr. Von Hildebrand doesn't say. But I would like to present my theory. It hinges around prophecies given to us by an Augustinian nun and stigmatist named Anna-Katarina Emmerick - whom the Church venerates as Blessed.

In the 1820's, Sister Emmerick had visions of the Church in the future. On September 12, 1820, Sister Emmerick said:

"I saw a strange church being built against every rule....No angels were supervising the building operations. In that church nothing came from high above....There was only division and chaos. It's probably a church of human creation, following the latest fashion, as well as the new heterodox church of Rome, which seems of the same kind....I saw again the strange big church that was being built there [in Rome]. There was nothing holy in it....Everything was being done according to human reason. I saw all sorts of people, things, doctrines, and opinions. There was something proud, presumptuous, and violent about it, and they seemed to be very successful. I did not see a single angel nor a single saint helping in the work. But far away in the background, I saw the seat of a cruel people armed with spears, and I saw a laughing figure which said: 'Do build it as solid as you can; we will pull it to the ground.'"

Is this "future church" a preparation for the Man of Sin, the Antichrist? From August to October of 1820, Sister Emmerick says: "I see more martyrs, not now but in the future....I saw the secret sect relentlessly undermining the great Church. Near them I saw a horrible beast coming up from the sea....When the Church had been for the most past destroyed [by the secret sect], and when only the sanctuary and altar were still standing, I saw the wreckers enter the Church with the Beast. There they met a Woman of noble carriage who seemed to be with child because she walked slowly. At this sight, the enemies were terrorized, and the Beast could not take but another step forward. It projected its neck towards the Woman as if to devour her, but the Woman turned about and bowed down [towards the altar], her head touching the ground. Thereupon, I saw the Beast taking flight towards the sea again, and the enemies were fleeing in the greatest confusion....Then I saw that the Church was being promptly rebuilt, and she was more magnificent than ever before."

The armies are poised for battle. On the one side, Satan and his cohort (which includes many priests and religious as well as lay people) who are building a church in their own image and likeness, a "FutureChurch" where sin is not confessed but celebrated and where lying and homicide serve as ersatz "sacraments." On the other, the Immaculata and her little children who are humble and despised by the world.

Satan and his followers have their tactics which revolve around the false idols of money, power, lust, and greed all clothed in the mantle of pride. The Immaculata and her cohort have their own tactics: prayer, fasting, penance, reconciliation, humility and a smallness which is clothed in the mantle of love.

As the Index makes clear, we have had four decades of "FutureChurch" and we are now seeing the fruits: Catholics who no longer attend Holy Mass and who don't confess their sins (largely due to what Pope John Paul II referred to as a "loss of the sense of sin," a shortage of clergy in the West, emptied seminaries, emptied convents, and Catholics who abort and contracept and think nothing of it.

This isn't a "coming of age," a movement from "adolescence to adulthood" as Fr. Broussard has called it. It represents apostasy and a preparation for the coming of the Man of Sin:

"Daniel prophesies of the Last Judgment in such a way as to indicate that Antichrist shall first come, and to carry on his description to the eternal reign of the saints....But he who reads this passage, even half asleep, cannot fail to see that the kingdom of Antichrist shall fiercely, though for a short time, assail the Church before the last judgment of God shall introduce the eternal reign of saints. For it is patent from the context that the time, times, and half a time, means a year, and two years, and half a year, that is to say, three years and a half." (St. Augustine).

Until next time,
God love you
Paul Anthony Melanson

Friday, October 28, 2005

Bishop McManus treating case seriously

While some would still engage in denial:

Bishop taking case seriously

Priest’s account is disputed


WORCESTER— Bishop Robert J. McManus, despite initially having been told that the Rev. James J. Aquino was the victim of false accusations, is taking seriously the priest’s admission that he was initially charged with lewd conduct in an adult store in Las Vegas last year.

“There’s no question he’s taking this very seriously,” said Raymond L. Delisle, diocesan spokesman. The bishop has not changed his decision to leave Rev. Aquino in his positions as pastor of Our Lady of Loreto Church and director of the diocesan diaconate program, Mr. Delisle said.

According to Las Vegas police, undercover police officers issued a criminal citation to the priest after seeing him masturbating another man for 30 minutes in the Adult Super Store.

Rev. Aquino told several hundred of his parishioners at his church Monday night that he had made a “very stupid mistake” by entering the store, but that he “never engaged in any sexual activity of any kind.” He said he spent only 5 to 10 minutes in the store before he was approached by two men who identified themselves as police and told him to follow them to the parking lot. There he was detained, but never arrested or taken to the police station, he said.

Bishop McManus last week said he learned of the Las Vegas incident earlier this year but was advised by Rev. Aquino’s lawyer that the allegations were false and were later dismissed by the Justice Court.

However, court records, verified yesterday by a court spokeswoman in Las Vegas, show the case was dismissed after Rev. Aquino pleaded guilty to disorderly conduct, did community service, sought counseling and stayed out of trouble. He was initially charged with lewd conduct and giving false information to a police officer.

The bishop said last week that in light of information provided by Rev. Aquino’s lawyer, Rev. Aquino would continue in ministry and continue to head the diaconate program. Mr. Delisle said yesterday he could not say more about the bishop’s response to the latest revelations contradicting the priest’s explanation, except that the bishop was taking the situation seriously.

Stephen G. Brady, president of a group called the Roman Catholic Faithful, notified Patricia O’Leary Engdahl, who formerly headed the diocesan Office for Healing and Prevention, of the charges against Rev. Aquino in an e-mail sent on March 10.

He said Ms. Engdahl replied that she had sent his e-mail to Rev. Aquino and that she also told Bishop McManus about it. “He has spoken with the civil authorities in Las Vegas. The bishop is appropriately addressing the matter,” she said in her reply, according to Mr. Brady. Daniel E. Dick of Worcester, victim support coordinator for Worcester Voice of the Faithful, brought the information about Rev. Aquino to the bishop’s attention. In an Oct. 17 letter to Mr. Dick, the bishop quoted Rev. Aquino’s lawyer as writing to the bishop that the lawyer “cannot and will not divulge matters of a confidential nature, which affect innocent, honest individuals.”

According to the bishop’s quotation, the lawyer said, however, that he was aware of the alleged incident “and have investigated the facts and circumstances associated with it.” The bishop’s letter to Mr. Dick said that the lawyer had written that the charges made against Rev. Aquino were false and “subsequently dismissed” by the court.

Mr. Dick said he cannot understand how a bishop could accept a lawyer’s assessment when the arrest report said that both men were issued criminal citations. Mary T. Jean of Leominster, who operates the Web site of Worcester Voice, was critical of Rev. Aquino for telling parishioners that the Catholic organizations that worked to get the information out to the public were “priest-hating.” A lifelong Catholic, Ms. Jean said she does not hate priests. She said her issue is safety of children and acting against clergy misconduct.

The court documents were posted on her site at Established in 2002, the site deals only with allegations of clergy misconduct in the Worcester diocese.


Emergency Contraception and Rape: A Catholic Perspective

Emergency Contraception and Rape: A Catholic Perspective

from "Notes from the Hill", occasional reflections on legislative developments in Massachusetts, March 9, 2003

Massachusetts Catholic Conference,

The Boston Globe reported recently on a bill filed in the Massachusetts legislature that would add to the state "patients rights act" a new mandate requiring sexually assaulted women to receive information about and access to "emergency contraception". The February 28 article by Liz Kowalczyk, headlined "Wider Use Promoted for ‘Morning After’ Pill," raises a topic about which some Catholics might be confused.

Senate bill 546 (the House has not assigned a bill number yet) is entitled "An Act to Provide Timely Access to Emergency Contraception". It would require all medical facilities "to promptly offer emergency contraception at the facility to each female rape victim of childbearing age, and to initiate emergency contraception upon her request." For reasons described below, the Massachusetts Catholic Conference opposes the bill as currently drafted.

The Globe article reported, accurately, that Catholic hospitals provide contraceptives to some but not all rape victims. After the article was published, a few upset readers called the Massachusetts Catholic Conference and other church agencies. Some were concerned that contraceptives were being distributed by Catholic institutions. Other callers were angry that contraceptives were not given to all rape victims.

The Catholic Church affirms that "marriage and married love are by their character ordained to the procreation and the bringing up of children" (Humanae Vitae, no. 9). However, "to force the use of marriage on one’s partner without regard to his or her condition or personal and reasonable wishes in that matter, is no true act of love, and therefore offends the moral order" (Humanae Vitae, no. 13).

Likewise, as the Catholic Catechism recognizes when discussing offenses against the 6th commandment, rape "is the forcible violation of the sexual intimacy of another person" and "an intrinsically evil act" (no. 2356). By implication, sexual assault cannot be considered ordered to the unitive and procreative functions.

Thus, according to the U.S. Catholic Bishops in their Ethical and Religious Directives for Catholic Health Care Services, a woman "who has been raped should be able to defend herself against a potential conception from the sexual assault" (Directive 36). She is not obliged when raped, as would be the case in consensual relations, to accommodate the natural potential for conception. The forced introduction of sperm is an act of aggression she may resist even through means that prevent the creation of new life. That explains why Catholic hospitals may distribute contraceptives in some rape cases, particularly within 24 hours after the assault. Immediate care is essential as well to address issues related to the transmission of venereal disease and for appropriate and compassionate trauma counseling.

However, if it is determined that a particular rape treatment would "have as [its] purpose or direct effect the removal, destruction, or interference with the implantation" of an embryo (Directive 36), a Catholic facility cannot offer it. A human life conceived by rape is not an act of aggression but a new person innocent of any wrongdoing. Some contraceptives may act as abortifacients by preventing implantation. Forcing Catholic hospitals to offer contraceptives in rape cases when an early abortion may result conflicts with the religious and ethical duty to do no harm. That explains why Catholic hospitals cannot offer or distribute contraceptives in every rape case and why S. 546 is objectionable.

Rev. William Saunders concurs with the Massachusetts Catholic Conference. In an article published at:, he writes:

Rape is a detestable, evil action. The Catechism offers a clear moral teaching: "Rape is the forcible violation of the sexual intimacy of another person. It does injury to justice and charity. Rape deeply wounds the respect, freedom, and physical and moral integrity to which every person has a right. It causes grave damage that can mark the victim for life. It is always an intrinsically evil act. Graver still is the rape of children committed by parents (incest) or those responsible for the education of the children entrusted to them." (no. 2356) Note that rape is "an intrinsically evil act," meaning that it is evil at its very root, nothing justifies it, and it is objectively a mortal sin.

If a woman is raped, even though she may fear exposing herself to shame and notoriety, she should seek proper medical care as soon as possible. Such care must be extremely sensitive and compassionate.

In accord with the Ethical and Religious Directives for Catholic Health Care Services (no. 36), the care for the rape victim has four aspects: First, she must receive spiritual and psychological support and counseling to help her deal with the trauma of the attack. Such support and counseling will probably continue for some time after the immediate period.

Second, health care providers need to cooperate with law enforcement officials, gathering evidence that can be used in the prosecution of the rapist.

Third, the victim needs treatment for bruises, cuts, or other injuries.

Finally, health care providers must provide treatment to prevent the possible contraction of venereal disease and pregnancy. The Directives state, "A woman who has been raped may defend herself against a conception resulting from sexual assault. If, after appropriate testing, there is no evidence that conception has occurred already, she may be treated with medication that would prevent ovulation, sperm capacitation, or fertilization. It is not permissible, however, to initiate or to recommend treatments that have as their purpose or direct effect the removal, destruction, or interference with the implantation of a fertilized ovum."(no. 36)

The woman who is a victim of rape has the moral right to prevent the pregnancy for the following reasons: First, the rapist (including his sperm) is an unjust aggressor who has violated the woman's dignity. Second, rape is an act of force and violence, unlike the conjugal love in marriage whereby both spouses give freely of themselves in an act of unitive and procreative love. Third, the woman is not responsible for the action, and thereby has the right to prevent the pregnancy. (Please note that for these three reasons, this guidance does not violate the Church' s teaching regarding contraception as expressed in Humanae Vitae, which, because of the free-giving between spouses, stated, "Each and every marriage act must remain open to the transmission of life (no. 11).)

In preventing pregnancy, most rape treatment protocols recommend anti-fertility drugs to be administered within 72 hours and over a period of several days. These drugs, such as Ovral, inhibit ovulation. However, some contraceptives may also affect the endometrium of the uterus, causing the expulsion of a conceived ovum. This latter effect is problematical.

The real difficulty in rape treatment protocols is having moral certainty (not absolute but the best possible, good faith, certainty one can have) that conception has not occurred, for once conception has occurred, the new life has a right to life and must be protected. The Second Vatican Council asserted, "Life must be protected with the utmost care from the moment of conception: abortion and infanticide are abominable crimes."(Gaudium et Spes, no. 51) Subsequently, the Declaration on Procured Abortion (1974) affirmed that life is sacred from conception and that directly intended abortion is an intrinsically evil act: "From the time the ovum is fertilized, a life is begun which is neither that of the father nor of the mother; it is rather the life of a new human being with his own growth. It would never be made human if it were not human already"(no. 12). Not only does this new life have physical integrity, it also has a soul, created and infused by Almighty God. This unique human being, with both body and soul, has a right to life no matter who he is or how he was conceived.

For this reason, The Ethical and Religious Directives for Catholic Health Facilities state, "Abortion, that is the directly intended termination of pregnancy before viability, is never permitted nor is the directly intended destruction of a viable fetus. Every procedure whose sole immediate effect is the termination of pregnancy before viability is an abortion, which, in its moral context, includes the interval between conception and implantation of the embryo" (no. 12). Therefore, abortifacients — those drugs which would cause the expulsion of a conceived ovum — are morally wrong.

Therefore, before administering contraceptives to a rape victim, health care providers must ascertain first her medical history (including menstrual history, recent sexual activity, and contraceptive usage). A pregnancy test should be performed. If she is not pregnant but her medical history suggests the possibility that ovulation may have occurred, then health care providers ought to administer a Luteinizing Hormone urine dip test or a progesterone blood level test. These tests would indicate if ovulation has indeed occurred and thereby a child was possibly conceived. If these tests are not available in a timely way or at all, treatment should proceed as long as there is a reasonable doubt that ovulation has occurred.

Here again is a key point. If there is a reasonable doubt that ovulation has taken place, the right of the woman to prevent the pregnancy should be favored, even if this unknowingly and unintentionally expels a conceived ovum. However, if there is certainty that ovulation has occurred and conception may have taken place, then the child has the right to life and the mother must not risk an abortion from the antifertility drugs.

On this latter point, some may have difficulty with the situation of a woman carrying to birth a child conceived through rape. Even though studies indicate a 0-2.2 percent occurrence of pregnancy due to rape (Abortion: The Hard Cases), the fact remains pregnancies do occur. We must never forget that the child is an innocent human being, made in the image and likeness of God, who did not ask to be conceived.

Also, as Christians, we bear the cross and suffer for the love of God. Consequently, a mother in such a case must love as Christ would truly love, and give life to the innocent child. For a mother who is the victim of the violence of an unjust aggressor to take the life of an innocent unborn child would make her now the unjust aggressor. As our Holy Father Pope John Paul II taught, whatever the reason for abortion, "however serious or tragic, can never justify the deliberate killing of an innocent human being."(Evangelium Vitae, no. 58) Instead, the faithful must support the woman who is the tragic victim and, if she has conceived, her child.

Father William Saunders is dean of the Notre Dame Graduate School of Christendom College and pastor of Queen of Apostles Parish, both in Alexandria, Virginia. The above article is a "Straight Answers" column he wrote for the Arlington Catholic Herald. Father Saunders is also the author of Straight Answers, a book based on 100 of his columns and published by Cathedral Press in Baltimore.

This is also the teaching of Dr. Germain Grisez, the Rev. Harry J. Flynn Professor of Christian Ethics at Mount Saint Mary's College in Emmitsburg, Maryland. Dr. Grisez writes that, "Preventing conception due to rape need not be contraception. In choosing to prevent a conception that might result from rape, someone could be choosing to contracept. This plainly is so when an administrator of an institution housing men and women incapable of giving consent to sexual intercourse makes little or no effort to prevent their copulation but takes measures to prevent pregnancies.

However, other sorts of cases must be considered. Rape is the imposition of intimate, bodily union upon someone without her or his consent, and anyone who is raped rightly resists so far as possible. Moreover, the victim (or potential victim) is right to resist not only insofar as he or she is subjected to unjust force, but insofar as that force imposes the special wrong of uniquely intimate bodily contact. It can scarcely be doubted that someone who cannot prevent the initiation of this intimacy is morally justified in resisting its continuation; for example, a woman who awakes and finds herself being penetrated by a rapist need not permit her attacker to ejaculate in her vagina if she can make him withdraw. On the same basis, if they cannot prevent the wrongful intimacy itself, women who are victims (or potential victims) of rape and those trying to help them are morally justified in trying to prevent conception insofar as it is the fullness of sexual union."

I wrote a Catholic laywoman back in July and quoted from both Dr. Grisez and Rev. Saunders to make my case that in cases of rape, a woman is justified (as are those who are assisting her) to try and prevent conception. But that once conception has taken place, it is never morally licit to procure an abortion or to employ abortifacients in an attempt at expulsion of the conceived ovum. This fine and intelligent woman wrote a post for her website in which she basically agreed. But then she wrote something strange. She wrote, "..I know Paul posted an article that sounded very convincing....and...bottoms up to anyone who wants to - but I'm not drinking the Koolaid."

The U.S. Bishops have said the same thing in No. 36 of their Ethical and Religious Directives for Catholic Health Care Services.

This is authentic Catholic teaching. It is not "Koolaid" laced with cyanide intended for the destruction of Catholic souls. It is not back-peddaling or "watering-down" Catholic teaching on the sinfulness of contraception. In cases such as those described, the measures taken are a defense of the woman's ovum (insofar as it is a part of her person) against the rapist's sperms (insofar as they are parts of his person). This is different from the case where an intimate, bodily union of intercourse is not imposed on the woman but sought or willingly permitted. In such a case, neither the woman nor anyone who permits the union can intend at the same time that it not occur. And so, Dr. Grisez says that, "..rape apart, contraceptive measures are chosen to prevent conception not insofar as it is the ultimate completion of intimate bodily union but insofar as it is the beginning of a new and unwanted person."

This is a fine point easily missed by some. But nevertheless true.

God love you all,
Paul Anthony Melanson

Thursday, October 27, 2005

More on Fr. Aquino

More on Fr. Aquino from noted Catholic journalist Matt Abbott in a column for

Catholic activist: Worcester priest is lying
By Matt C. Abbott
Oct 25, 2005

Stephen Brady, founder and president of the Petersburg, Ill.-based Roman Catholic Faithful, a lay watchdog group, says that Father James Aquino, pastor of Our Lady of Loreto Parish in Worcester, Mass., is lying about a citation he received in 2004 for lewd conduct while in Las Vegas.

According to an Oct. 25, 2005 story in the Worcester Telegram & Gazette, Aquino, 66, “told several hundred parishioners gathered at the Massasoit Road church, ‘that I never, never, never engaged in any sexual activity of any kind. I was never arrested, I was never handcuffed and I was never taken to the police station.’”

Aquino “acknowledged receiving a citation for lewd conduct, obstructing and providing false information … while vacationing in Las Vegas with Monsignor Louis P. Piermarini, calling the charges ‘false accusations.’ After a nearly 11-month continuance, the charges were dismissed Sept. 6 in the Justice Court of Las Vegas during which Rev. Aquino met several conditions, including counseling and 50 hours of community service,” according to the story.

Aquino admitted only to entering an adult bookstore, calling it a “very stupid mistake.”

But Brady isn’t buying Aquino’s explanation.

"Aguino was seen, by two police officers, committing a lewd act with another man. I have seen the police report. Anyone who believes one can be charged with committing a lewd act simply for entering a bookstore … is out of his mind,” says Brady.

The summer 2005 issue of RCF’s newsletter, “Ad Majorem Dei Gloriam,” contains the following information about the case (edited):

On October 24, 2004, two undercover Las Vegas police officers, while in an adult book store and theater, observed one Larry xxxx and Father James Aquino engaging in lewd conduct in a place open to the public (Arrest Report #1920773)….

Both men were escorted outside. Aquino said he had no identification on him -- checks were run on a fake social security number furnished by Aquino, with negative results. After a few minutes he admitted he had identification in his shoe, a Massachusetts driver’s license. The picture reflected Aquino in a Roman collar, and he admitted he gave false information because he was a priest. He was cited for lewd conduct, obstructing and false information.

Father James Aquino is pastor of Our Lady of Loreto Parish in Worcester, Mass., and is director of the permanent diaconate program for the diocese. This information was furnished to Bishop McManus of the Worcester, Mass., diocese in March 2005. There has been no response to our inquiry from the bishop’s office.

Matt C. Abbott is a Catholic journalist and commentator. He is a columnist for and/or contributor to,,,, and He is also an occasional contributor to "The Wanderer" Catholic newspaper. He can be reached at

Paul Anthony Melanson

Wednesday, October 26, 2005

St. Catherine of Sienna and the Dialogue

In her own day, St. Catherine of Sienna found much corruption within the Holy Church. Homosexuality and many other deeply rooted problems were found among the clergy and Our Lord spoke to this Doctor of the Church about these problems (pride, loss of sacred identity, loss of faith, worldliness, and sensuality). These conversations were laid out in St. Catherine's book entitled "Dialogue," and most especially in that portion of the book labelled "The Mystical Body of Holy Church."

While St. Catherine cautions her readers not to engage in blanket condemnations aimed at the clergy in general (using scandals as an excuse to denigrate priests in general), and refers to such people as "irreverent persecutors" of the clergy, still, she was told by Our Lord that those who will not receive correction and those who will not give it are like the limbs of a body beginning to rot.

In our sacharrin society, medicinal rebuke is often mistaken for a "lack of charity" when in actuality such constructive criticism aids in healing. In his excellent work entitled "Liberalism is a sin," Fr. Felix Sarda Y Salvany writes:

"If the propagation of good and the necessity of combating evil require the employment of terms somewhat harsh against error and its supporters, this usage is certainly not against charity. This is a corollary or consequence of the principle we have just demonstrated. We must render evil odious and detestable. We cannot attain this result without pointing out the dangers of evil, without showing how and why it is odious, detestable and contemptible. Christian oratory of all ages has ever employed the most vigorous and emphatic rhetoric in the arsenal of human speech against impiety. In the writings of the great athletes of Christianity the usage of irony, imprecation, execration and of the most crushing epithets is continual. Hence the only law is the opportunity and the truth.

But there is another justification for such an usage. Popular propagation and apologetics cannot preserve elegant and constrained academic forms. In order to convince the people we must speak to their heart and their imagination which can only be touched by ardent, brilliant, and impassioned language. To be impassioned is not to be reprehensible----when our heat is the holy ardor of truth.

The supposed violence of modern Ultramontane journalism not only falls short of Liberal journalism, but is amply justified by every page of the works of our great Catholic polemicists of other epochs. This is easily verified. St. John the Baptist calls the Pharisees "race of vipers," Jesus Christ, our Divine Savior, hurls at them the epithets "hypocrites, whitened sepulchers, a perverse and adulterous generation" without thinking for this reason that He sullies the sanctity of His benevolent speech. St. Paul criticizes the schismatic Cretins as "always liars, evil beasts, slothful bellies." The same apostle calls Elymas the magician a "seducer, full of guile and deceit, child of the Devil, enemy of all justice."

If we open the Fathers we find the same vigorous castigation of heresy and heretics. St. Jerome arguing against Vigilantius casts in his face his former occupation of saloonkeeper: "From your infancy," he says to him, "you have learned other things than theology and betaken yourself to other pursuits. To verify at the same time the value of your money accounts and the value of Scriptural texts, to sample wines and grasp the meaning of the prophets and apostles are certainly not occupations which the same man can accomplish with credit." On another occasion attacking the same Vigilantius, who denied the excellence of virginity and of fasting, St. Jerome, with his usual sprightliness, asks him if he spoke thus "in order not to diminish the receipts of his saloon?" Heavens! What an outcry would be raised if one of our Ultramontane controversialists were to write against a Liberal critic or heretic of our own day in this fashion!

What shall we say of St. John Chrysostom? His famous invective against Eutropius is not comparable, in its personal and aggressive character, to the cruel invectives of Cicero against Catiline and against Verres! The gentle St. Bernard did not honey his words when he attacked the enemies of the faith. Addressing Arnold of Brescia, the great Liberal agitator of his times, he calls him in all his letters "seducer, vase of injuries, scorpion, cruel wolf."

The pacific St. Thomas of Acquinas forgets the calm of his cold syllogisms when he hurls his violent apostrophe against William of St. Amour and his disciples: "Enemies of God," he cries out, "ministers of the Devil, members of antiChrist, ignorami, perverts, reprobates!" Never did the illustrious Louis Veuillot speak so boldly. The seraphic St. Bonaventure, so full of sweetness, overwhelms his adversary Gerard with such epithets as "impudent, calumniator, spirit of malice, impious, shameless, ignorant, impostor, malefactor, perfidious, ingrate!" Did St. Francis de Sales, so delicately exquisite and tender, ever purr softly over the heretics of his age and country? He pardoned their injuries, heaped benefits on them even to the point of saving the lives of those who sought to take his, but with the enemies of the faith he preserved neither moderation nor consideration. Asked by a Catholic, who desired to know if it were permissible to speak evil of a heretic who propagated false doctrines, he replied: "Yes, you can, on the condition that you adhere to the exact truth, to what you know of his bad conduct, presenting that which is doubtful as doubtful according to the degree of doubt which you may have in this regard." In his Introduction to a Devout Life, that precious and popular work, he expresses himself again: "If the declared enemies of God and of the Church ought to be blamed and censured with all possible vigor, charity obliges us to cry 'wolf' when the wolf slips into the midst of the flock, and in every way and place we may meet him."

This is real meat for real Catholics. It was Sir Edmund Burke who said that, "The only thing necessary for evil to triumph in the world is for good people to do nothing." When we witness another Catholic (and yes, even a priest) promoting homosexuality, abortion, contraception, New Age, witchcraft, or dissent in general, we have an obligation (in charity) to speak the truth and to show others how that individual's words, ideas or actions fail to hold up when placed in the Lumen Christi - when held up to the Magisterial teaching of the Church.

If someone wants to accuse us of "having an axe to grind," simply because we speak the truth, that's their affair. But such people should recall what St. Catherine had to say about medicinal rebuke and should meditate upon these passages from Sacred Scripture:

"Do not be deceived; God is not mocked, for whatever a man sows, that he will also reap. For he who sows to his own flesh will from the flesh reap corruption; but he who sows to the Spirit will from the Spirit reap eternal life." (Galatians 6:7-8).

"Nothing is covered up that will not be revealed, or hidden that will not be known. Whatever you have said in the dark SHALL BE HEARD IN THE LIGHT, and what you have whispered in private rooms SHALL BE PROCLAIMED FROM THE HOUSETOPS." (Luke 12:2-3).

The Word of the Lord.


Paul Anthony Melanson

Tuesday, October 25, 2005

On questioning....

"When there is an imminent danger for the Faith, Prelates must be questioned, even publicly, by their subjects."
–St. Thomas Aquinas
Summa Theologica II, II, q. 33, a. 4

Monday, October 24, 2005

La Salette Missionaries in Crisis? More disturbing revelations.

In a book entitled, "Going Home: The Long Haul - A Psycho-Spiritual Journey Dealing with Manic-Depression," Fr. Patrick McCarthy relates that from June of 1983 until March of 1984 he participated in the House of Affirmation Program of therapies. Fr. McCarthy also relates how the "House psychiatrist" prescribed him his first dosage of lithium (pp. 38-39).

But why would the La Salette Missionaries send one of their own to the House of Affirmation for therapy? After all, as Mary Jean of Leominster, Massachusetts has documented at her website


The House of Affirmation, located at 120 Hill St., Whitinsville, MA 01588, was established in 1973 as a rehabilitation center for pedophiles and other troubled clergy and ended in financial scandal in the late 1980s. Established under the jurisdiction of the Catholic Archdiocese of Boston, the House of Affirmation had branches around the country and in at least one foreign country. Some of the centers were located in Massachusetts, Connecticut, Florida, California, Missouri, and England. Affirmation Books was the publishing arm of the House of Affirmation.

An article appeared in the June 29, 1973, edition of The Catholic Free Press, the diocesan newspaper, that included a photograph of Rev. Thomas A. Kane dressed in what appeared to be academic robes. Rev. Kane told the newspaper that he had received his doctorate in psychology from the University of Birmingham, England, and would return to become director of the newly established House of Affirmation in the Whitinsville section of Northbridge, MA.

Who is Rev. Thomas A. Kane? Rev. Kane was the House of Affirmation. He co-founded the House of Affirmation and purportedly used it to line his pockets, formulate a child sex ring, and satisfy his molestation desires.

Kane accumulated ample real estate holdings before his departure from the House of Affirmation. The holdings included one house each in Upton and Whitinsville, an inn and a farm in Maine, three condominiums in Boston, two condominiums in Florida, an interest in trusts that owned other Boston properties, and an interest in a pet store on Boston's upscale Newbury Street.

Rev. Kane used Affirmation Books, the publishing arm of the House of Affirmation, to advertise and promote his beliefs regarding relationships with children. For example, the book, "Intimacy," published in 1978 by Whitinsville-based
Affirmation Books, includes essays by therapists offering seemingly contradictory views on celibacy and sexuality. "Celibate persons should celebrate, relish, and enjoy life," one passage reads. "They should see the divine in the sexual act, the act of human creation, and acknowledge their sexual selves, their maleness or femaleness," reads another. Other books include:

Kane, T. (1980). Happy are you who affirm. Whitinsville,
Massachusetts: Affirmation Books.

Kane, T (1976). The healing touch of affirmation. Whitinsville,
Massachusetts: Affirmation Books.

As stated in one news article, "a psychological text published by a now-defunct treatment center for troubled priests could have served as a primer for molestation of adolescents and adults by clergymen, according to psychotherapists who have studied sex abuse in the church."

Rev. Kane left the House of Affirmation in 1986 amid allegations of financial improprieties brought by eleven center managers and executives. In June 1988, 11 months after being removed from his responsibilities at the House of Affirmation, Rev. Kane was named executive director of the National Guild of Catholic Psychiatrists, following a recommendation from Bishop Timothy J. Harrington.

After settling a lawsuit where he was shown to have been with several boys, Rev. Kane filed for bankruptcy in the early 1990s. Before filing for bankruptcy, Rev. Kane transferred a piece of property he owned in Florida to Monsignor Brendan P. Riordan, who also was a director of the House of Affirmation and was a friend of Rev. Kane. Monsignor Riordan is also accused of child molestation by a survivor.

On Wednesday, June 3, 1992, the Office for Youth Ministry for the Roman Catholic Diocese of Worcester was relocated to the former House of Affirmation at 120 Hill St., Whitinsville, MA. The Office for Youth Ministry for the Roman Catholic Diocese is sometimes called the Oakhurst Retreat and Conference Center. The location is: Youth Ministry Office, 120 Hill St. Whitinsville, MA 01588 508-234-0346.

The House of Affirmation has been the center of several lawsuits against priest molesters who lived there. You probably can obtain more information about the House of Affirmation from the public record court documents or by writing the attorneys involved in the law suits

Now, all of this is extremely disturbing. Especially since Fr. Joe Bachand, another La Salette Missionary, is on staff at the St. Luke Institute, an institution run by theological liberals which promotes homosexuality as a "gift" and encourages patients to act out genitally.

There is much here that is deeply and profoundly unsettling.


Sunday, October 23, 2005

Article from Roman Catholic Faithful

The following article may be found at the website for the Roman Catholic Faithful apostolate:


Before you explore any other pages on our site, please take a moment to read the following statement, which was prepared by one of the priests guiding RCF. We ask this so that you may clearly understand what the Roman Catholic Faithful are doing, and what we stand for.

A very, very long time ago a pagan Greek philosopher suggested that 90% of you would not like what I'm about to say, but I do ask you to read it all and I pray that you will consider it honestly. First you must realize that we are living in the most evil of all the ages. Read your newspaper. I will take only one example - abortion. We have killed more children than any people in history, and no one else is even in the ballpark! Hitler, Stalin and the other monsters of history must peek through the flames of Hell and gaze in awe and professional admiration at the level of our barbarity. We have found a way to kill children and vote for those who protect the abortionist and we still go to Church on Sunday. We can read from the Bible about the terrible things God said about those who would harm His "little ones" and never connect those words to our own final judgment. I remember being horrified when I read in school about the Aztec Indians throwing children alive into the fire as a sacrifice to their god. How barbaric! But count the numbers. What is the output of the abortion clinics in this country each day? Who are the barbarians? Who are the monsters? At least the Aztecs will have the excuse that they thought they were serving God. What excuse will we have?

As followers of Christ and members of His Church we must stand in opposition to evil! There is a very real conflict, a "spiritual warfare" that the followers of Jesus are called to take up. This is revealed with crystalline clarity in all forms of revelation. God calls His followers to reject the ways of this world and follow him. This warfare is not for the weak or the faint of heart, and many are simply not capable. St. Thomas Aquinas said, "Grace builds on Nature." That is why the Israelites spent 40 years in the desert. A generation of slaves with a slave's mentality had to die off and a new people, strong and toughened by the harsh life of the desert had to rise up. Most Catholics today seem to be like those slaves. They are simply not capable of dealing with the truth. And the truth is that the evil that is everywhere in this world is also deep within the Church. Pope Leo the XIII noticed it and composed the "Prayer to St. Michael". Pope Paul VI proclaimed that the "Smoke of Satan has entered the sanctuary"! Throughout the history of the Church it has always been those who are within that have caused the most damage. Remember that Judas was a bishop and nearly all the heresies that have ravaged the Church throughout history have come from priests and bishops. In an earlier age we were better equipped to deal with this evil and protect the truth. No less a Saint than St. John Chrysostom said, "The floor of hell is paved with the skulls of bishops!"

This evil has festered and grown because it has been promoted and protected by a false spirituality with its roots in the "spirit of Vatican II". An astounding and diabolical pride has allowed us to turn away from the spiritual values that have made saints for 2000 years to embrace a false theology promoted by a false church and presenting a false god. This new god simply blesses whatever our desires, passions, and appetites crave. This god wants us to be happy and such things as sacrifice; penance and self-discipline are non-values. This is the god of the "group hug", "we are the church", and if you complain - "Don't be judgmental" This "god" is a god of love, but not the burning self-sacrificing love we see on the cross, but a phony and sick imitation, a daytime TV talk show morality, which is preached from too many pulpits and is fooling "even the elect"! It's a god for slaves and enslavement. It has found a home deep in the heart of the Church and the Church seems incapable of dealing with it!

If we wish to survive these days with our faith intact we should learn the lessons of history. We live in a time when the laity must rise up to save the true Church. This is very difficult because we are coming out of an age when the laity looked to the hierarchy for guidance. But as it was in the time of King Henry the VIII, you may follow your pastor or even your bishop and as a result find yourself outside the true Church. This is not an age that will suffer weak faith. Soon there will only be two kinds of Catholics - strong Catholics and ex-Catholics.

Leave "political correctness" to the false church. It's time for a little plain speech. Its time for a little truth! There are many homosexuals in the priesthood and in the hierarchy. Many of these are not living celibate lives, and they prey on others. They do not preach the truth of Jesus Christ because they could not do so without condemning themselves. They are in positions of authority in Chancery Offices and seek to add to their numbers by controlling vocations. They organize into "support groups" many of which are not oriented toward celibacy, but exist to provide "contacts" for sexual relationships. Priests are dying of AIDS at an alarming rate and some have even blamed the Church for not teaching them about "safe" sex in the seminary! (How safe can "safe" sex be, when Hell is the result!)? The Church has not shown any desire or ability to deal with this. Recently the Vatican told a priest and a nun to stop giving workshops across the country promoting the homosexual lifestyle. That's nice. But they have been giving these workshops for 20 long years!! How many souls have been lost and lives destroyed while the hierarchy did nothing! Maybe your newspaper today will carry the story about another multi-million dollar lawsuit involving a pedophile priest. The judgments are so high because juries are learning that bishops knew who the pedophiles were and allowed them to continue to destroy children. Bishops protected the pervert and provided innocent victims for him to prey upon. Bishops even hide perverts by trading them from diocese to diocese like baseball players! (You take mine, and I'll take yours.) Parents and good priests approach Church authorities with accusations and are ignored or referred to an inept committee. The goal of those in authority is simply damage control and covering it up. Recently I met with a very well known priest who was sent to represent the hierarchy in a terrible case of sexual abuse. His primary concern seemed to be to avoid publicity. I told him we would consider his request if he would answer two simple questions. First - Would he give me just one example of the Church intervening on its own to stop that particular form of abuse? - He didn't answer. Second - If we backed away and did not make this public and as a result of our choice another innocent person was attacked, would God hold us responsible for that terrible sin? He didn't answer that question either. It seems that the operative spirituality of the Church has become so weak that it is no longer capable of dealing with evil. It is a fact that authorities in the Church have allowed innocent lives to be destroyed and then have covered up the crime and protected the criminal! This has been done with the thinly veiled excuse that "we must protect holy mother church from scandal"! The tragic truth is this publicity and large lawsuits have done much more to protect the innocent than the Vatican, the National Council of Catholic Bishops or the Apostolic Delegate combined! And (with apologies to Vince Lombardi) the protection of the innocent is not the most important thing; it's the only thing! If it is necessary to protect one innocent child then I pray that every diocese in the country will be sued for every nickel it has and every sordid detail be put on the front page of every newspaper! The Church that I love and that Jesus promised would last until the end of the world is a Church that doesn't want to appear holy, it must be holy!

Allow me to return to that Greek philosopher and the 90%. Heraclitus was a philosopher and a warrior. During a lull in the battle he wrote a letter to the leaders of Athens regarding the soldiers he was receiving as replacements. He said that for every 100 men they sent 90 were useless. They were little more than battlefield clutter. Out of the 100, about 10 were fighters and the outcome of the battle rested on their shoulders. And maybe one, only one, was a true warrior. The spiritual warfare is no less warfare, and I believe the percentages apply. The vast majority doesn't want to know the truth. They just want things to be "nice" and the truth and the demands it would place on them as followers of Christ are unacceptable. I appreciate those who pray but if that's all you do, remember it says in the epistle of St. James that "Faith without works is dead and has no power to save you!" I would ask those 90% to consider joining the warrior class. You are needed! If you cannot - Then at least stay out of the way. The battle is tough enough without clutter. If you cannot fight this Goliath, at least stand back and make room for those who are going forward to sling their stones. The false charity and empty spirituality of those who mouth pious platitudes over the broken bodies and souls of the innocent is an affront to the martyrs and missionaries who gave their lives to share the true faith. I have seen, up close and personal, the heart-rending results of allowing predators to destroy children, families, and faith. A "drawing room" spirituality does not have the power to fight the malignant evil of this age. Delicate sensibilities must be sacrificed and hands dirtied in favor of a cross-centered faith! We are not fighting for principles or philosophies. We are fighting for SOULS and we must not lose!


Saturday, October 22, 2005

More on the St. Luke Institute

The more I uncover about the notorious St. Luke Institute in Maryland, the more concerned I become. In an article entitled "Merced Priest's Behavior is Inappropriate, says Steinbock," and published at the website of San Francisco Faith (article at:, we read:

In an article in the February 1997 Catholic World Report, author Lesley Payne documents the testimony of priests and seminarians who claim they have been subjected to a “Church-run psychiatric gulag at St. Luke, which they said was operated by theological liberals, often by men who are openly homosexual.” Payne notes that, according to one patient, at St. Luke doctrinally “rigid” priests who pray “compulsively” are kept longer than others with more severe problems.

Payne writes that, according to the book, Lead Us Not Into Temptation by Jason Barry (an admirer of the institute’s founder, Father Michael Peterson), therapy at St Luke “included affirmation of priests’ homosexual orientation.” The article quotes a doctor who resigned from St Luke Institute in 1998: “I have become progressively uncomfortable with the moral tone of the Institute and its therapeutic programs. In my opinion, the Institute has been used as an outlet for the psycho-pathology of its founder and for other members of the staff from its inception.”

I asked Michael Rose, author of Good Bye Good Men and editor of, for comment. “St. Luke’s,” according to Rose, “like most similar institutions, is a serious problem for a number of reasons. First, it has been shown in many venues that St. Luke’s operating principles are not grounded in Catholic morality. Homosexuality is regarded as a gift and not a disorder. I don’t see how any bishop could expect to get any positive results by sending one of his priests to such an institution.”

“St. Luke’s,” continued Rose, “is tied into the clergy network of lavender cronyism, leading one to reasonably suspect that ‘treatment’ provided by the institute is a ‘going-through-the-motions’ cover.”

Dr George Maloof, a psychiatrist from San Francisco with over 30 years experience, agrees with Rose. Sending Lastiri to St. Luke, said Maloof, “is a standard approach the bishop is taking. St Luke Institute (from what I’ve read from other priests’ experiences) and other centers have been notoriously unproductive or counterproductive in helping priests correct their behaviors. But it helps the bishop show that he is doing something.”

According to Maloof, treatment at centers like St Luke gives “the Freudian you-must-express-yourself-or-you-are-neurotic view. You must express yourself genitally, or it’s bad for your mental health. The American Church has basically bought into that perverse view Freud came up with to destroy the Catholic Church. The Catholic Church says celibacy is noble, and Freud maintained one has to express oneself genitally. Freud’s intention was to reform society by releasing it of the inhibitions the Church imposed on people. These treatment centers try to get people to express themselves sexually.”


More recent developments here.

Worcester Diocese still in crisis

This article courtesy of the Worcester Voice website maintained By Mary Jean of Leominster, Massachusetts:

Friday October 21, 2005

Pastor of Our Lady of Loreto Parish, Fr James Aquino, subject of lewd conduct incident in Las Vegas.

Fr. James Aquino pastor of Our Lady of Loreto Parish and Director of the Permanent Diaconate Program (training for new deacons) is allowed to stay in ministry after October 21, 20004 sexual incident.

October 21, 2004, two undercover Las Vegas police officers, while in an Adult book store and theater, observed one Larry xxxx and Fr. James Aquino engaging in lewd conduct in a place open to the public (Arrest Report#1920773).

This information was furnished to Bishop Robert McManus in March 2005 by the The Roman Catholic Faithful. In their summer 2005 publication, Ad Majorem Dei Gloriam (page 8) the story of Fr Aquino was released.

The two men were seen masturbating each other without concealing it in a place open to the public. Both men were escorted outside. Aquino said he had no identification on him - checks were run on a fake social security
number furnished by Aquino, with negative results. After a few minutes he admitted he had identification in his shoe, a Massachusetts driver’s license. The picture reflected Aquino in a Roman collar, and he admitted he gave
false information because he was a priest.

Fr. James Aquino was cited for Lewd Conduct, Obstructing and False Information.

Mr. Daniel Dick of the Worcester VOTF, sent a letter to Bishop McManus dated September 30, 2005. In this letter Mr. Dick writes, this report was sent to me by a Stephen Brady, a board member of the Roman Catholic Faithful, Inc. in Petersburg, Illinois. I gather that, from copies of e-mails sent to me, that you have already received this information, that you have contacted the civil authorities in Las Vegas and that Rev. Aquino has also been informed of this exchange.

Mr. Dick in closing question why the Worcester Diocesan Directory shows Rev. James J. Aquino as both pastor and director of the diaconate program while this matter appears to be unresolved.

Bishop McManus replied to Mr. Dick on October 17, 2005. Bishop McManus shocking letter includes a copy of a response from Fr Aquino's attorney. The attorney states he can not divulge matter of confidential nature, which affects innocent, honest individuals. Further the lawyer replies Fr Aquino was not arrested by rather issued a citation. The lawyer projects that the charges were dismissed, by the Justice court of Las Vegas, however in review of actual court documents a plea bargain was arranged with the court by Father Aquino's counsel.

There is still a homosexual network within the Church which needs to be exposed. That a Bishop would allow Fr. Aquino to remain in ministry is deeply disturbing.


Friday, October 21, 2005

Fr. Bachand and the Saint Luke Institute

Fr. Joseph Bachand, a La Salette priest who wrote me a hate-filled email denouncing me for questioning the fidelity of the La Salette Missionaries, works at the St. Luke Institute in Maryland. Many priests accused of abusing children are sent to this facility which is located in Maryland. Read the following about this shady institution which is excerpted from the Baltimore Sun:

"When priests arrive at St. Luke, their initial evaluations include a battery of psychological, personality and intelligence tests. They also typically undergo CAT scans of the brain and are attached to a device designed to measure arousal in men when they are shown pornographic photographs.

"’That device, called a penile plethysmograph, is one of the most controversial parts of St. Luke's approach, and some priests subjected to it call the experience humiliating.

"’Dr. Fred S. Berlin, founder of the Baltimore-based National Institute for the Study, Prevention and Treatment of Sexual Trauma, said the arousal measurements, as well as sometimes confrontational counseling sessions, are important components of the program.

"'The idea is not for these guys in treatment to be comfortable,' said Berlin, who worked with St. Luke as it began its sexual offender program in the early 1980s.’

"Fred Berlin is a proponent of Kinsey's discredited sexual theories and another ‘expert’ upon whom the bishops have relied. With the exception of a few orthodox bishops and dioceses, these are the kinds of psychologists who have the ears of our shepherds --- which is one reason that Dr. Judith Reisman has suggested the bishops sue their advisors for malpractice.

"We urge Arlington Catholics to protest to Bishop Loverde about his plan to expose our clergy to Fr. Steve Rosetti and the homosexual propaganda of St. Luke Institute. They are the likely source of the ridiculous statement made recently by our Victim Assistance Coordinator that the sex abuse scandal wasn't about homosexuality, that the abusers weren't homosexual and that ‘children are safer with homosexuals than heterosexuals.’

"I heard that same nonsense spouted by former St. Luke head Fr. Canice Connors when I attended the child abuse seminar back in the 80s. He was introduced by Fr. Rippy and proceeded to tell the hundreds of us gathered in O'Connell High School's Theatre that heterosexuals, not homosexuals, were abusers. I knew at the time he was presenting a false picture -- that the NUMBER of heterosexual abuse cases was greater, but that homosexuals commit a much higher PERCENTAGE of the crimes. In fact, homosexuals commit about 37% of sexual abuse cases while representing only about 2% of the population. So clearly, they are a much greater threat to children. But those meetings offered no opportunity for questions or challenge…."

Troubling is it not?


La Salette Center in crisis?

Sister Karol Jackowski, the pro-abortion nun who left her religious community and who has conducted a pagan retreat at La Salette Attleboro, was mentioned at Envoy magazine's website by Pete Vere, J.C.L.:

SISTER KAROL'S SPELLBOOK [ Pete Vere ] 1 Comment(s)
How Sister keeps herself busy when she is not promoting her pro-abortion dissent.
11/26/2004 2:02:50 AM
Is it even possible to parody boomer Catholic modernists (who are neither Catholic nor modern) anymore? On days like today, I am glad that there is such a thing as a "non-canonical" community, that is, a religious community not recognized under canon law.

Many of you know "Sister" Karol Jackowski from her occasional appearances on CNN promoting dissent from Church teaching when it comes to pre-natal infanticide. Personally, I couldn't think of anything more objectionable and more diabolical than someone claiming to be a Catholic religious sister while promoting abortion. That is, until a couple of our Anglican readers drew my attention to Sister Karol's Book of Spells and Blessings. (I think they initially assumed she was an Episcopalian, however, it turns out she's one of ours in name.)

Why would the La Salette Retreat Center in Attleboro allow Sister Jackowski to conduct a pagan retreat for women there?


Wednesday, October 19, 2005

Reiki and Yoga

Since the La Salette Retreat Center in Attleboro, Massachusetts is sponsoring retreat weekends featuring both Reiki and Yoga, I thought the following article from: might be of interest.

Chancellor Defends 'Nude' Statue and Meditations With Potential Occult Links

The chancellor of a major American diocese has defended the use of both yoga and a form of esoteric therapy called "reiki" as ways of enhancing prayer and healing in a Catholic setting -- a view that appears to be in contradiction of the Vatican.

The chancellor, Father Ralph E. Wiatrowski, of Cleveland, says that the diocese does not officially propagate the practices but sees nothing wrong with elements of them.

His views first came to light in a letter to a local woman who had complained about use of such practices at the Church of the Resurrection in Solon, Ohio.

The church, which advertises yoga classes in the parish hall on Thursdays at 8:30 a.m. and 5:45 p.m., also has a highly controversial portrayal of the Blessed Mother.

"As to the matter of yoga and reiki classes that are offered, please know that while these are not Christian in origin, there are principles involved that can be helpful in Christian meditation as well as techniques of relaxation as a preparation for prayer," wrote Father Wiatrowski on August 19. "While such things are not formally encouraged, it does not seem that there is anything present to warrant concern." Father Wiatrowski repeated those views in an interview with Spirit Daily.

Those who oppose such practices note the link to what they see as Eastern occultism, most memorably represented by figures such as Maharishi Mahesh Yogi.

Yoga is from the Sankrit word Yug, meaning "union" (with the Divine, your higher "self").

"It is a path for transcending the ordinary mind (who you think you are) in order to merge with your 'higher self' or 'God self,'" notes one Christian website. "Yoga means 'to yoke' -- to yoke with Brahman (i.e., the 'Infinite,' the 'Universal Spirit,' the impersonal force that the Hindus call 'God') via the realization of an altered state of consciousness, thereby theoretically releasing oneself from the bondage of endless reincarnation. Yoga comes out of the Hindu Vedas. It can be traced back to Patanjali, who was a religious leader. Shiva, one of Hinduism's three most powerful gods, was known as 'The Destroyer' -- he's called Yogi Swara or the 'Lord of Yoga.'

In the West yoga is mainly used as a form of relaxation. Father Wiatrowski argues that in a Catholic setting yoga "can help a person to quiet down and center himself." He added that it can be "applied to prayerful atmosphere," helping to rid distractions." While it is "from another culture," says the chancellor, there may be "many who find it beneficial."

But alarm has been rung over a possibly hidden form of occult indoctrination and its spread into Catholic churches and religious settings throughout the West, where it is especially prevalent among nuns.

In a recent document on the New Age -- issued by the Pontifical Council for Culture and the Pontifical Council for Inter-religious Dialogue -- the Vatican warned that "some of the traditions which flow into New Age are ancient Egyptian occult practices, Cabbalism, early Christian gnosticism, Sufism, the lore of the Druids, Celtic Christianity, mediaeval alchemy, Renaissance hermeticism, Zen Buddhism, Yoga, and so on."

In the interview with Spirit Daily, the Cleveland chancellor argued that because Jesus "is standing in the middle of all of this" when yoga is practiced in a Catholic setting, such a practice "can have helpful elements." He said he didn't recall the direct reference in the Vatican document to yoga. The views are likely to raise hot debate among many who believe that both yoga and reiki -- along with a spiritual method known as the "labyrinth," which is also offered by the church -- have negative ramifications.

Meanwhile, Cleveland has been a hotbed for what is known as "Future Church," an organization that seeks to bring women and married priests into the mainstream.

"Yoga is clearly a New Age concept that is deeply religious and pantheistic in its origin," notes the Christian discernment website. "Yoga is also associated with imagery, visualization, hypnosis, mind magic, chanting of mantra, positive thinking, and Silva mind techniques, which are not only unbiblical, but are potentially dangerous. When practiced by professing believers, it allows a certain external spiritual influence in our lives, which is inconsistent with, and disallowed (2 Corinthians 6:14-18), in the teachings of the Holy Scriptures (2 Corinthians 4:4).

While reiki is not singled out by the Vatican as "New Age," reiki websites describe it as "a technique for stress reduction and relaxation that allows everyone to tap into an unlimited supply of 'life force energy' to improve health and enhance the quality of life," which many interpret as in the New Age tradition.

Reiki (pronounced ray-key) is a Japanese word representing universal life energy. It is derived from rei, meaning "free passage" or "transcendental spirit," and ki, meaning "vital life force energy" or " universal life energy." For many, reiki dangerously incorporates elements of many alternative healing practices such as psychic healing, auras, crystals, chakra balancing, meditation, aromatherapy, naturopathy, and homeopathy, some of which, like yoga, have clear links to the New Age and are advertised on such websites.

"The energy stuff is extreme, but you need to see all of this as part of the gift of healing," asserts Father Wiatrowski. "It helps in understanding the totality of healing and can be as valuable as therapeutic touch."

Not just convents and parish halls but Catholic hospitals across the United States have become centers for both yoga and reiki. The Ohio parish was likewise criticized for what many see as a sensual portrayal of the Blessed Mother [left]. This too the diocesan chancellor defended, saying that like the "Last Judgment" scene, figures are not nude but in gossamer robes. Father Wiatrowski says he was assured this by the parish. "Tastes in art vary from person to person," he argued. "The Blessed Mother is clothed."

Replied the woman who had complained, "I received your response and looked again at the photo of the statue of Mary. I must have a problem with my eyesight because, to me, the outline of the Blessed Mother's body is quite obvious. Again I have to say that this is a very sacrilegious way to show respect for the person whose name is synonymous with purity and modesty."


La Salette Attleboro offering a "Spa Weekend for Women"

The La Salette Retreat Center (947 Park Street in Attleboro, Massachusetts) is offering a "Spa Weekend for Women" conducted by Karen Laroche. This event will be held from August 4-6, 2006, and an advertisement for the weekend says that, "A Woman's life can be so overwhelming. The Spa Weekend for Women is si uncomplicated and so gentle that it gives you the time and space to reconnect with yourself, your God and other women of faith. Come relax, pray and enjoy the offerings of massage, Reiki and Reflexology. Cost: $140 * There is an extra charge for body work.

Reiki? Reflexology? That's New Age. And what do they mean by "an extra charge for body work"? I'm almost afraid to ask.

For those who cannot wait for the "Spa Weekend" and its New Age methods of relaxation, Judith Medeiros will be conducting "A Yoga Retreat" on January 13-15, 2006. The advertisement for this particular retreat says, "..Give yourself the gift of some quiet time and space after the hectic holiday season. Hatha Yoga involves gentle stretching exercises, rhythmic breathing and deep relaxation techniques.."

Whatever became of lectio divina and approved Catholic meditation techniques? I have been unable to find a "Rosary Weekend" or a "Scripture Weekend" offered by the La Salette Missionaries.


Tuesday, October 18, 2005

Pope John Paul II on worthy reception of the Sacraments

In a meeting with the American Bishops, Pope John Paul II said that, "It is sometimes claimed that dissent from the Magisterium is totally compatible with being a 'good Catholic' and poses no obstacle to the reception of the Sacraments. This is a grave error that challenges the teaching office of the Bishops of the United States and elsewhere..."

The Catechism of the Catholic Church, 1395, teaches us that the Eucharist is properly the Sacrament of those who are in full communion with the Church. Does your parish priest teach this? If not, why not?


Monday, October 17, 2005

From Spirit Daily: 3 am hour

This article, a compilation of experiences different people have had at 3 am, may also be found at:


It is intriguing, this notion that three a.m. bears special spiritual significance.

We've been reporting about it for years. It spans nations, religions, and the cultural milieu -- with even secular movies working it into their themes.

Most recent was The Exorcism of Emily Rose, which has many of the chilling events happening at this switching (or should would say "witching") hour?

Our review of the movie led to a deluge of e-mail from those who claim their own experiences.

Is it a time when the "veil" is especially thin? Is it an evil hour? Or a combination?

"I got goose bumps when you mentioned three a.m.," wrote John O'Brien of Lake St. Louis, Missouri. "I can't tell you how many times -- hundreds -- I have awakened at precisely three a.m. I have always assumed someone needed prayers. I had no idea it was a common thing."

Common indeed. In devotional circles, rampant. Does Jesus, does the Blessed Mother, rally forces at this time that is also an active hour for witches (the end of their midnight-to-three ceremonies)?

"On one occasion, just recently, I was dreaming that I was being followed by something evil, there was chaos and destruction all around," reports another reader, Caroline Jarzabek of Toronto. "I was trying to get away but I had that dreaded feeling that this entity was getting closer and closer, a deep fear crept in. Just then in the distance I could hear a group of people (maybe angels), praying the Rosary. I immediately joined in and there was instant peace. I woke up and you guessed it -- it was three a.m."

Want to get a bit chilled? "My friend George Lutz -- of the highly documented Amityville Horror demonic persecution -- woke up each night at 3:15 -- which was thought to be the time a young man murdered his family of six in that same house 13 months earlier," notes a viewer from the West Coast.

During apparitions of the Blessed Mother at Kibeho, Rwanda, points out yet another viewer, it was claimed that three a.m. was the hour that Peter denied Jesus for the third time. Others point out that three a.m. is the reverse of three p.m. (the hour of Jesus's death, and now the hour of mercy), or that it may have been the moment of Resurrection.

We're not sure of that, but at Rwanda, which has Church sanction, one seer claimed he was told that "those who sin at that hour cause both the Eternal Father and Jesus Christ such deep suffering due to numerous sins being committed at this hour that the Eternal Father feels He could destroy the world but because of His great love for us will not do so."

For your discernment!

Is it also the hour to pray for souls in purgatory?

According to Patty O'Neil of Phoenix, she and her family began waking up at three a.m. after speaking with an American seer, who they visited after their dad died (in 1989, saying his Rosary).

"In the period after his death, we visited with Estela Ruiz, family friend and visionary in South Phoenix, Arizona," says Patty. "She had a message for us that when our dad died, that Our Blessed Mother was there with him. We all began waking up at three a.m. shortly after. Once we started talking about and realized this was happening, we then learned of the significance of that holy hour. Our spiritual lives have increased and grown steadily so that now it no longer surprises us but we will start praying because we believe someone needs prayer. We've been visited by souls who passed on, been attacked, and one sister received a phone call at three a.m. exactly with no one there. Her caller ID read 'Unknown.'"

As we said: for your interpretation. "One three a.m. experience was a week before St. Gennaro's in 2002 or 2003," relates a viewed named Donna Maria from Calabria, Italy. "I fell a sleep on the couch which I usually don't do. I woke up and looked out the window and across the street from my house is a lemon tree and I saw what at first I thought was the guy across the street put a huge statue of the Madonna in front of the lemon tree. As I focused closer it was not a statue, and I don't need glasses. It was flowing but not solid like statue. It was a little more defined than the silhouette photos of the Madonna of Medjugore. Then she raised her arm pointing to the northeast and disappeared. I looked at the clock and it was three a.m."

There seems to be a spiritual battle, with representations from both side. From the dark side, notes one viewer, comes the smell of sulfur (noted in many locales these days).

"I am often awakened at three a.m. and take it as a time to pray for what Jesus wants me to pray for, so I pray the Rosary and most often pray in tongues, my prayer language, as that is what I feel the Holy Spirit wants me to pray for at that time," relates a woman named Francesca from Dayton, Ohio. "Perhaps I sense for someone in trouble, danger, ill or whatever. I pray till I fall asleep again. It is also a good time to pray the Mercy Chaplet as it may be for a person dying, or just pray it for Mercy to be shed upon the world in our time of dire circumstances."

If not three a.m., it seems to be precisely 3:33 a.m.

But the stroke of three is by far the most widely reported -- hundreds have done so to us over the years.

Michael is often involved, as is the Blessed Mother. Some felt under attack until they began praying more, or fasting.

"I wake up many nights, or should I say mornings, at three a.m.," says Janice M. Stolle of San Antonio. " When I do, I pray to St. Michael the Archangel to protect us all from evil and harm. During Katrina, it was almost every night, but now it is more sporadic.

"Three a.m.!" writes a viewer named Rene M. Schneider of Willow Springs, Illinois. "Many times I find myself awake with my rosary saying the Divine Mercy Chaplet! I am awakened and 'told' to pray! It feels like many curses come this time."

Often it gets back to the concept of Mercy.

"I always wake up during the three o'clock hour in the middle of the night," writes Barbara McPhail. "I am extremely devoted to the Divine Mercy and coordinate these devotions for our parish of Our Lady of Perpetual Help in Lindenhurst, New York. I always felt that God wants us to pray at that hour that is why he constantly wakes me (and many people I know) up during that time. So I pray and talk to Jesus and tell Him how much I love Him and I also say Jesus I trust in You many many times during that hour for as long as he keeps me awake.

"I never looked at 3:00 as a witching hour and I never will. Three o'clock will always remind me of Jesus dying on the cross for me and of the Divine Mercy."
Notes yet one last one, Janice Stravinskas of Saugus, Massachusetts: "I have been awakened suddenly at this hour, many times, with promptings to immediately begin praying the Divine Mercy Chaplet, to ask for mercy on the world. I have read Sister Faustina's Diary, cover to cover, and after that began a serious devotion to the chaplet. Since then, I have had these experiences of being suddenly awakened, at this hour, mostly between 3:00 am and 3:30. After I pray, I return to a nice peaceful, restful sleep."


Thursday, October 13, 2005

A problem that won't go away by itself

Mr. Michael Brown has written an excellent article on the homosexual problem within the Catholic Church and the need for the Vatican to act decisively. It may be found at:


It's crunch time in Rome as we pray for the discernment of the Vatican. In front of a new Pope is the new document on how to handle homosexuals in the clergy and rumors have swung back and forth, between those that claim it will be an '"H-bomb" -- a tough document restricting all homosexuals from the priesthood, even if they are celibate -- and those that predict the Vatican will allow those with gay tendencies into the clergy if they can prove that they have been celibate for three years and appear that they will remain so.

We have to believe -- perhaps "hope" is a better word -- that despite recent reports, the Vatican will not blink and that its choice will be the former. The Church hierarchy must be cleansed, and immediately, of homosexuality. We still recall the ways of John Paul II, and it's difficult to see him issuing any document unless it was tough on this particular problem. Under him, homosexuality was dealt with compassionately but as an "intrinsic disorder" (as are other sinful tendencies). This seems to us the Christian route. We can love those with such tendencies at the same time that we realize they should not be ministering but rather should be ministered to.

Then there is the issue of practicality: how could a seminarian with homosexual tendencies (themselves difficult, often, to detect) prove that he has been celibate? And even if he has, is three years long enough? Isn't that number a bit toward the short end?

Lastly is the matter of 1961. That was the year the then-Sacred Congregation for Religious issued a document on the selection of candidates for the priesthood in which it was clearly stated that "those affected by the perverse inclination to homosexuality or pederasty should be excluded from religious vows and ordination."

The 1961 document was reaffirmed, under John Paul II, in March of 2002, when Vatican spokesman Joaquin Navarro-Valls stated to The New York Times that "people with (gay) inclinations just cannot be ordained."

Such language is strong, to the point, and correct.

However much we can cherish the good aspects of people who fight such temptation (as all of us have crosses), it seems that the "gay" tendency is a matter for deliverance, not for compromise; it is a serious disorder that must be purged before a man is fit to minister; it is nothing that should be tolerated due to a politically-correct atmosphere.

Those with homosexual orientations often can and should be helped rid themselves of this obsession. They can only be helped if we stop treating it as an issue of sociology.

It is a spiritual issue. And the crisis is hardly over. Huge headlines on extensive and horrible abuse of youngsters by priests has erupted in just the past several week from Philadelphia to Los Angeles.

If the Vatican is seen as succumbing to political and social pressure (the media has been in a frenzy about the alleged and perhaps mythical "H-bomb," as have some leaders of religious orders), it could be very damaging to Benedict's XVI's papacy and more so to the priesthood. Heterosexual men will continue to be discouraged from entering seminaries (fearing the label of "gay"), and the critical shortage of priests will grow increasingly severe.

That in turn will lead to more intense pressure, in coming years, for married clergy.

Thus our prediction: a tolerance of celibate homosexuals in the priesthood will lead to married priests. Our remedy: take the strong medicine now. If the number of seminarians plunges as a result of disqualifying gay candidates, so be it; it will be temporary -- whereas putting a bandage on the hemorrhage will allow the bleeding to continue. It has already discouraged enough good men from the ranks.

"To your point about homosexuality in the priesthood, my brother went to the Gregorian University in Rome to study for the priesthood in the mid-eighties although he did not complete his studies and become ordained," writes Kathy Ronning of Yardley, Pennsylvania. "He told me that at the time a third of the priests-seminarians were homosexual and had made advances towards him (he's heterosexual). Unbelievable that in the backyard of the Vatican men of the cloth are proclaiming that the faithful should be heterosexual, monogamous, and refrain from using birth control or masturbating, and all the while they are participating in these illicit activities."

An initial step may be to make sure modernistic nuns (who have been known to weed out heterosexual men) are not involved in the screening process. Replace them with heterosexual priests. And forget psychologists, who too often excuse all sorts of sin.

In a 2001 interview with Catholic News Service, then-Archbishop Tarcisio Bertone, who was secretary of the Vatican's doctrinal congregation, explained that while the homosexual inclination is not sinful in itself, it "evokes moral concern" because it is a strong temptation to actions that "are always in themselves evil." He defined the homosexual inclination as "a temptation that, for whatever reason, has become so predominant in a person's life as to become a force shaping the entire outlook of the person." Persons with a homosexual inclination, he too said, should not be admitted to the seminary.

It is the choice before us.

In a couple short weeks we will see where the Vatican leads. Will it "reformulate" the 1961 document or stick to it guns, taking the rough and tough road that certainly seems like the correct medicine? Will we hold tight despite the crisis of priest shortages or soften requirements for the sacred priesthood -- which may create far greater shortages in the long-term, as heterosexuals are permanently discouraged from entering?

The 1961 document recommended that any candidate for the priesthood with serious unresolved sexual problems be screened out, saying that the chastity and celibacy required by religious and priestly life would constitute for them a "continuous heroic act and a painful martyrdom." That 1961 document has never been abrogated, and so is still technically valid.

Will the Vatican stand by it in coming days or will it now be invalidated?

Tuesday, October 11, 2005

The Rosary Letter and Its Critics by Rev. Thomas Carleton

This article was written by Fr. Thomas Carleton and may be found at the website as well as It is always most edifying when one a priest of the Lord Jesus defends and promotes the Most Holy Rosary of Our Blessed Mother. Please write Fr. Carleton and thank him for this magnificent article if you get the chance.

THE ROSARY LETTER AND ITS CRITICS Fr Thomas Carleton Feast of the Holy Rosary, 2005

Like a delicate and beautiful garland weaved to Our Lady, Pope John Paul's Letter is urging, not only Catholics, but all Christians to take up the Rosary; for the Pope knows and trusts the hidden power of the Rosarian cord of secretly working in the hearts of Adam's race to "draw them" back *with the bonds of love* to the one Church of Christ.

"I shall draw them with the cords of Adam, with the bands of love" (Os. 11, 4)

On the Feast of Our Lady of Fatima, May 13th, 1981, in Saint Peter's square Rome, Pope John Paul II was shot. The Holy Father, though severely wounded, survived the assassination attempt. The following year on the anniversary, the Pope made a pilgrimage to Fatima to thank Our Lady for saving his life: "one had fired", the Pope explained, "and another hand guided the bullet".

The question that we should ask, is: "Did Our Lady of the Rosary, as the Blessed Mother called herself at Fatima, save the Roman Pontiff's life so that he could go on to "overthrow" the traditional Rosary? According to the normal manner in which such religious signs are interpreted, we would say that Our Lady had a special mission reserved for the Holy Father. In fact, twenty years later, the Pope issued the Apostolic Letter: ROSARIUM VIRGINIS MARIAE, regarding the Catholic world's most beloved devotion.

Unlike the "new Mass" which was intended as a substitute for the "old Mass", the Pope left completely intact the traditional form of the Holy Rosary, adding, however, for those who might wish to profit by them, another cycle of decades which he termed: "the Luminous Mysteries" or the "Mysteries of Light". These new Mysteries commemorate five additional events in the life of Our Blessed Lord. Many devoted to the practice of the Rosary and familiar with the series of mysteries had at times felt the desire to meditate as well on Mysteries in the public teaching life of Our Blessed Lord. In one sense, it was a very logical step that this Pope had the privileged destiny to take. These new Mysteries include a commemoration of four of the Church's Sacraments, whose Scriptural word, "Sacramentum", means, in fact, "mystery": Baptism, Holy Matrimony, the Blessed Sacrament and Holy Orders, not to pass over the Church's most precious treasure: the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass. By adding these mysteries, which, as the Holy Father delicately specified, were "left to the freedom of individuals and communities", the Pope no more changed the traditional Rosary than Pope Leo XIII changed the traditional Mass when he added the Saint Michael prayer to the end of the "Low Mass", a change, incidentally, which, being considered an obligatory addition, was not "left to the freedom" of anybody.

"In psalms, hymns, and spiritual canticles, singing in grace in your hearts to God" (Col. 3, 18).

The form of the Rosary, including an identifying of the Mysteries, has been shaped over the centuries in various ways by a number of Popes.

The Franciscans even have their own popular enumeration of the mysteries called "The Seven Joys", thus adding two more "Joyful Mysteries".

Yes, the Luminous Mysteries add 50 more voluntary "Hail Marys" to the traditional Rosary form, but then again there are beautiful hymns and spiritual canticles outside the Psaltery, including the Canticles of the Virgin Mary, Zachary, Simeon, Anna, Job, Tobias and many others: "Let the word of Christ dwell in you abundantly, in all wisdom, teaching and admonishing one another in psalms, hymns, and spiritual canticles, singing in grace in your hearts to God" (Col. 3, 18). These new Mysteries of the Rosary in the "breviary of the faithful" might well be seen as representing those Biblical canticles not numbered in the 150 Psalms, but nevertheless forming a part of the Church's breviary.

Some critics of the Apostolic Letter have unfairly attacked it for what, in their opinion, it "does not say", attempting to compare it unfavorably with what Pope Leo XIII wrote in his first Rosarian encyclical, "Supremi Apostolatus Officio", and yet in the very introduction to "Rosarium Virginis Mariae", the Pope specifically appropriates for himself all that is taught in that encyclical:

"Numerous predecessors of mine attributed great importance to this prayer. Worthy of special note in this regard is Pope Leo XIII who on 1 September 1883 promulgated the Encyclical Supremi Apostolatus Officio, a document of great worth, the first of his many statements about this prayer, in which he proposed the Rosary as an effective spiritual weapon against the evils afflicting society."

This is a common approach in Papal documents. Pope Pius XII, for example, in his encyclical on Scripture studies does not repeat all the former teachings given by his predecessors, but merely recommends these encyclicals as required instructions.

The Pope's Rosary Letter is criticized for not mentioning Saint Pius V's sixteenth century Apostolic Letter which helped to fix the present form of the Rosary. The traditional form of the Rosary, however, had already undergone changes since Pope Pius V and even since Pope Leo XIII, including one requested by Our Lady of Fatima herself in the form of the "decade prayer", recited at the end of each decade:

"Oh my Jesus, forgive us our sins,

Save us from the fires of hell,

and led all souls to heaven,

especially those

who have no one to pray for them".

Without questioning Pope Paul VI's disinclination to change the form of the Rosary, we do believe that the main force of "Marialis Cultus" was directed at the "dump the Rosary" crowd that was particularly vociferous at that time. The Letter expressed the desire that two Marian devotions in particular be fostered: the Angelus and the Rosary.

"Every scribe instructed in the kingdom of heaven, is like a man that is a householder, who bringeth forth out of his treasure new things and old" (Mt. 13, 52).

Pope Leo XIII, indeed, has left us an epochal patrimony on the Holy Rosary, one that for preaching the Rosary is truly "profitable to teach, reprove, correct, instruct in justice, that the man of God may be perfect, furnished to every good work" (2Tim. 3, 16-17), but that does not mean that each vicar of Christ does not have his own particular gift or contribution to make: "Every scribe instructed in the kingdom of heaven, is like a man that is a householder, who bringeth forth out of his treasure new things and old" (Mt. 13, 52).

The attempt, however, to set one Pope against another, one papal teaching against another, serves no purpose but to undermine the authority of all papal teaching, and no where does this self-destructive and ultimately imploding approach to Papal teaching do more damage than in the understanding of the Papal Magisterium held by devout Catholics. Each of the Popes, as equally in his turn, the vicar of Christ on earth and visible shepherd of the flock, has a valuable magisterium and guidance to offer.

"I shall draw them with the cords of Adam, with the bands of love" (Os. 11, 4).

The Pope's Letter has been attacked for "the mysterious suppression of the words 'Catholic' and 'Catholics'". Actually there is nothing "mysterious" here, there is no conspiracy. Yes, the Holy Father knows that the Church is "Catholic", but he also knows that it is "Apostolic" and that results in him often trying to reach the broadest audience possible. It means the daunting task of trying to preach to more than "just the choir". Saint Dominic went to preach the Rosary not to practicing Catholics but to people who drifted from the faith. When dealing with heresy, you can employ one of two approaches: either you can hammer people over the head denouncing their errors or you can just get them praying the Rosary. From the very beginning, as explicitly understood by Saint Dominic, the unusual force of the Rosary was its ability to bring about a return to true faith and good morals - the easy way! This is an essential point because it forms the heart of the Rosary story: Saint Dominic was not having success in his mission to those who had fallen away and asked Our Lady what he should do. Our Lady then revealed to him the power of the Rosary to win souls and by that means he succeeded in bring the fallen away back to the Faith. This power of the Rosary was also understood by Saint Charles Borromeo in dealing with lapse convents and monasteries; it was understood as well, in his preaching and writing, by Saint Louis de Montfort.

It is in other words a misunderstanding of the power and purpose of the Rosary to say that the Pope "tampers with the Rosary while doing nothing to root out the pandemic corruption and heresy afflicting the Church today", when in fact the surest way to prevent heresy and corruption is precisely to return to a faithful devotion of Our Lady's Rosary.

The third promise of Our Lady to "Christians" who recite the Rosary states:

"The Rosary shall be a powerful armour against hell, it will destroy vice,

decrease sin, and defeat heresies".

From the promises of Our Lady and the long experience of the Church we have ever reason to believe that this return to good morals and true faith by means of the Marian Rosary is the plan of God: "I shall draw them with the cords of Adam, with the bands of love: and I shall be to them as one that taketh off the yoke on their jaws" (Os. 11, 4). The Holy Father has understood the plan and his Letter on the Rosary clearly reflects that plan.

Not all the critics of the Letter have understood the Plan:

"The 'ecumenical' avoidance of that which is too explicitly Catholic is

the very reason RVM does not even suggest that the Rosary ought to

be prayed for the deliverance of the Catholic Church from her enemies

and the conversion of non-Catholics to the one true religion. But those

intentions are the very reason the Mother of God bequeathed the

Rosary to Her Church as 'a powerful warlike weapon' and 'the means

of putting the enemy to flight, and of confounding their audacity and

mad impiety' (Leo XIII)."

Like a delicate and beautiful garland weaved to Our Lady, Pope John Paul's Letter is urging, not only Catholics, but all Christians to take up the Rosary; for the Pope knows and trusts the hidden power of the Rosarian cord of secretly working in the hearts of Adam's race to "draw them" back "with the bonds of love" to the one Church of Christ.

Yes, the Church has enemies, but this specific Letter was not meant to be "a declaration of war", it was meant, if anything, to be a declaration of love: a call to the filial love that we all must have toward our heavenly Mother. What is wrong with that? If, as the beloved Disciple assures us, that "God is Love" (1Jn. 4, 8), why cannot the Pope write a letter of love, especially when that letter concerns Our Blessed Mother?

"The mouth of the just shall meditate wisdom" (Ps. 36.30)

Perhaps the Marian Psaltery of the Rosary is alluded to way back in the Shepherd David's Psalm where we read: "The mouth of the just shall meditate wisdom" (Ps. 36. 30). Notice that it does not say "the mind of the just", but rather the "mouth of the just". The Rosary is a unique uniting of vocal and mental prayer. No papal document on the Rosary develops the meditative aspect of this prayer as much as John Paul's Rosary Letter, and yet even this has come under criticism: "RVM states that: 'In effect, the Rosary is simply a method of contemplation.'" In this attention to meditation the Holy Father is following the example of Our Lady of Fatima who in her First Saturday devotion requires a meditation on the Mysteries of the Rosary also outside the recitation of that prayer. On a spiritual level, it is clear that most of us have difficulty especially with the contemplative part of the Rosary and the Pope's pastoral attempt to explain to the faithful this often times mystifying requirement as "simply" as possible, is indeed very helpful.

"Put on the new man" (Ep. 2, 15)

Among the criticisms of the document we find this:

"RVM informs us that the Rosary "marks the rhythm of human life";

that "anyone who contemplates Christ through the various stages of

his (sic) life cannot fail to perceive the truth about man" (emphasis in

original); that "it could be said that each mystery of the Rosary, carefully

meditated, sheds light on the mystery of man" and that by contemplating

the life of Christ in the Rosary "believers come face to face with the

image of the true man." Of what spiritual significance is this

anthropocentric view of the Rosary? RVM does not explain. But

whatever it means, Catholics never heard any such thing before the

current pontificate."

Protagoras in the 6th century BC maintained that "Man is the measure of all things", a theme enthusiastically revived, often in a pagan way, by many Renaissance thinkers. If the only "man" that is known or referred to is sinful man, then that idea cannot lead to a sound Philosophy. With the Incarnation, however, we have "a perfect man" and so understood in its Christocentric meaning (the sense clearly given by the Pope), the ancient Protagorean adage can become an accurate and fruitful basis of theological and philosophical truth. As Our Blessed Lord had said: "The sabbath was made for man, not man for the sabbath. Therefore the Son of man is Lord of the sabbath also" (Mk. 2, 27-28). Saint Paul spoke of "the new man" (Ep. 2, 15). In his Epistles he explains this: "The first man was of the earth, earthly: the second man, from heaven, heavenly (1 Cor. 15, 47); "The gift, by the grace of one man, Jesus Christ, hath abounded unto man" (Rm. 5, 15); and so the Apostle exhorts us to: "Put on the new man, who according to God is created in justice and holiness of truth" (Ep. 4, 24).

Saint Augustine often spoke of the implications of the Incarnation: "God was made man, that He Who might be seen by man, and Whom man might follow, might be shown to man" (Ser. xxii de Temp.). He wrote of Christ becoming: "A partner with us of human nature?" (De Trin. xiii); and further: "God has proved to us how high a place human nature holds amongst creatures, inasmuch as He appeared to men as a true man" (De Vera Relig. xvi).

Pope Leo as well says in a Christmas sermon : "Learn, O Christian, thy worth; and being made a partner of the Divine nature, refuse to return by evil deeds to your former worthlessness" and again: "Unless (Christ) was man, He would not have set an example" (Ser. xxi). Pope Paul VI, before John Paul II, had also written similar thoughts.

But wait a minute. Why am I doing this? Is anyone insinuating that the Holy Father is teaching questionable spirituality, apt to listen to me?

"Hail, full of Grace" (Lk. 1, 28).

The Pope is even blamed for making "no mention of Mary's status as the Mediatrix of all graces. . . a teaching RVM utterly ignores". On the contrary, however, the Holy Father writes: "The Rosary is both meditation and supplication. Insistent prayer to the Mother of God is based on confidence that her maternal intercession can obtain all things from the heart of her Son. She is 'all-powerful by grace'". Here the Pope quotes from the famous "Supplica", recited twice a year in all the churches of Italy, of Blessed Bartolo Longo, the Italian layman who founded the Shrine of Our Lady of the Rosary of Pompei.

"We have piped to you, and you have not danced; we have mourned, and you have not wept"( Lk. 7, 32)

Among the "post Vatican II novelties", one that strikes me as being particularly novel, is the easy with which seemingly sincere Catholics now attack the Pope. This is an attitude which very much goes against the "sensus catholicus" and, in former times, was usually more associated with schismatics and heretics. Criticism from traditional circles of a Papal document promoting the Rosary is especially sad: "We have piped to you, and you have not danced; we have mourned, and you have not wept" (Lk. 7, 32).

"But be ye doers of the word, and not hearers only" (Jam. 1, 22).

"But be ye doers of the word, and not hearers only" (Jam. 1, 22). From Pope John XXIII we have a particularly compelling papal witness: ". . .the holy Rosary which we never fail to recite in its entirety each day of the year: act of marian piety that above all we desire to fulfill with particular fervor in the month of October" (Grata Recordatio). Three times a day Bishop Angelo Roncalli, and later also as Pope John, would recite the Rosary in his chapel with the members of his household. To my recollection he is the only Pope to have given such a personal, precious and powerful testimony of reciting daily the whole Rosary.

"Cometh to the light" (Jn. 3, 21).

Some Catholic circles have always evaluated the Pope in terms of church politics, labeling his every action as either "liberal" or "conservative". We shall leave to others and "to history", as they say, to judge the strengths and weaknesses of the Wojtyla papacy. What is sure is that those special and saintly souls, like Mother Teresa, of which God has never deprived the Church, have always recognized in the Pope John Paul II a deeply spiritual man and we can't help but note that so many chosen souls, divorced from any suspicion of partisan interest, have received the new "Mysteries of Light" not with merely a dutiful respect, but with real spiritual joy. Can we not say here that they "cometh to the light" (Jn. 3, 21).

When it comes to spreading the Holy Rosary, there is no time to lose. "The Rosary", as Pope Leo XIII has said, "is the remedy for all our evils, the root of all our blessings".

Father Thomas Carleton

Feast of the Holy Rosary, 2005 editorial.
Site Meter