Sunday, March 30, 2008

Is moral opposition to homosexuality a hate crime?

The Southern Poverty Law Center has included Mass Resistance in its list of hate groups because of the organization's opposition to homosexuality, an opposition which is rooted in both Divine Revelation and Natural Law. This is ridiculous on so many different levels. What is particularly ironic, however, is that Mass Resistance doesn't even meet the SPLC's definition of a hate group: "All hate groups have beliefs or practices that attack or malign an entire class of people, typically for their immutable characteristics." (Source:

And what is the definition of "immutable"? The word itself comes from the Latin: in - not and mutabilis - mutable. The American Heritage Dictionary provides us with an excellent definition: "Not subject or susceptible to change." But can one honestly suggest that homosexuality is immutable? Not according to the hard science:

What then has motivated the Southern Poverty Law Center to include Mass Resistance in its listing of hate groups? Is the SPLC driven by politics or science? Tolerance or relativism? Open-mindedness or indiscrimination?

What do you think?

Saturday, March 29, 2008

SPLC: Quo Vadis?

The Southern Poverty Law Center (SPLC) devotes an entire section at its website to "Teaching about tolerance." But what is tolerance? How do we define it? Dr. Montague Brown, a professor of philosophy at St. Anselm College in Manchester, New Hampshire, provides us with an excellent definition of tolerance. He writes, "Tolerance is the willingness to accept actions we believe to be inappropriate or even wrong because it would be worse to take action against them. Tolerance is community-oriented. Ideally, all bad behavior should cease, but it is unrealistic to think that society could succeed in enforcing this ideal. Tolerance understands this." (The One-Minute Philosopher, p. 166).

And how would we define relativism? Again, Dr. Montague: "Relativism is the assumption that there is no right or wrong. No action is considered better or worse than any other. If this is so, all actions are equally acceptable. Relativism is profoundly anti-community. If there are no standards of morality to which we should adhere, tolerance is no better than intolerance." (The One-Minute Philosopher, p. 167).

Does the SPLC possess an adequate understanding of what constitutes tolerance? Such would not appear to be the case. While the SPLC has done much good in the past, exposing hate groups across the United States, recent additions to the organization's list of hate groups has many asking the same question: Quo vadis SPLC?

"...the atheistic systems of modern times are the most frightful examples of passionate religious enthusiasm alienated from its proper identity, and that means a sickness of the human spirit that may be mortal. When the existence of God is denied, freedom is, not enhanced, but deprived of its basis and thus distorted. When the purest and most profound religious traditions are set aside, man is separating himself from his truth; he is living contrary to that truth, and he loses his freedom." (Joseph Cardinal Ratzinger).

"Nowadays there is a tendency to claim that agnosticism and sceptical relativism are the philosophy and the basic attitude which correspond to democratic forms of political life. Those who are convinced that they know the truth and firmly adhere to it are considered unreliable from a democratic point of view, since they do not accept that truth is determined by the majority, or that it is subject to variation according to different political trends. It must be observed in this regard that if there is no ultimate truth to guide and direct political activity, then ideas and convictions can easily be manipulated for reasons of power. As history demonstrates, a democracy without values easily turns into open or thinly disguised totalitarianism." (Pope John Paul II, Encyclical Letter Centesimus Annus, No. 46).

Relevant reading:

An important website....

We are living in heroic times. It is a time of heroic witness. More than ever, being a Christian means rowing against the tide. The age of "comfortable Christianity" has passed. We now live in an age in which those who resist the godless forces of secular humanism and the dictatorship of relativism must be prepared to face martyrdom.

Wednesday, March 26, 2008

" fellow believers in the God who revealed himself.."

In a meeting with Jewish leadership [in the United States] on September 11, 1987, Pope John Paul II said in part, "It is my sincere hope that, as partners in dialogue, as fellow believers in the God who revealed himself, as the children of Abraham, we will strive to render a common service to humanity, which is so needed in this our day. We are called to collaborate in service and to unite in a common cause wherever a brother or sister is unattended, forgotten, neglected or suffering in any way; wherever human rights are endangered or human dignity offended; wherever the rights of God are violated or ignored.."

As readers of this Blog know well, I have committed myself to fighting not only anti-Catholicism but also anti-Semitism. It is my belief that "spiritually, we are all Semites" (Pius XI to Belgian Pilgrims, September 6, 1938). This is one reason I have devoted so much time in the past in opposing an anti-Semitic organization based out of Richmond, New Hampshire and calling itself the "Saint Benedict Center."

The leader of this organization has asserted that the Jewish People undermine public morality. And so it is with great irony that I reflect upon recent events which took place in Central Massachusetts. Seven Christian Churches were vandalized by a troubled youth during Holy Week. A reward was offered by the Knights of Columbus and by the Shaloh House Chabad Synagogue based out of Stoughton, Massachusetts:

Why do I make mention of this? While the "Saint Benedict Center" in Richmond, New Hampshire (not to be confused with the Saint Benedict Center in Still River, Massachusetts which is in full communion with the Church - there is no affiliation) did not offer any reward monies in this case, our dear friends at the Shaloh House Chabad Synagogue did.

It would appear that while our Jewish brothers and sisters in Stoughton have taken the words of Pope John Paul II as their own, the "Saint Benedict Center" in Richmond, New Hampshire has not.

Jewish People undermine public morality? Lord Jesus, have mercy on those who actually believe that.


Tuesday, March 25, 2008

Gardner Police make arrest in Church vandalism case...

This is terrific news. The Gardner Police have done a wonderful job. Please let them know how grateful you are.

In a comment left here at La Salette Journey, Gardner Mayor Mark Hawke wrote, "The individual(s) responsible for this terrible act have been identified and one person is in now custody. It is reported on if you would like to read about it. The Gardner Police Department should be commended for such a quick, thorough and well done investigation and arrest. Thank you GPD."

I think the Mayor should also be commended. This is a shining moment for Gardner. Let's turn it into a shining moment for the local Churches. Let's all extend forgiveness to this troubled young man. Let's try to understand what is driving his hatred. Let's pray that he will repent of these acts of vandalism and reconcile with God and those he has hurt.

As Christians, we are called to no less.


One day Our Lady of La Salette will lead the world...

"One day Our Lady of La Salette will lead the world."

-Holy Curé of Ars, St. Jean-Baptiste Marie Vianney

"We judge that the Apparition of the Blessed Virgin to two cowherds, on the 19th of September, 1846, on a mountain of the chain of the Alps, situated in the parish of La Salette, in the arch-presbytery of Corps, bears within itself all the characteristics of truth, and the faithful have grounds for believing it indubitable and certain."

"We believe that this fact acquires a new degree of certitude from the immense and spontaneous concourse of the faithful on the place of the Apparition, as well as from the multitude of prodigies which have been the consequence of the said event, a very great number of which it is impossible to call in doubt without violating the rules of human testimony."

"Wherefore, to testify our lively gratitude to God and to the glorious Virgin Mary, we authorize the Cultus of Our Lady of La Salette. We permit it to be preached, and that practical and moral conclusions may be drawn from this great event."

"In fine, as the principal end of the Apparition is to recall Christians to the fulfillment of their religious duties, to frequent the divine worship, His Church, to a horror of blasphemy, and to the sanctification of the Sunday, we conjure you, our very dear brethren, with a view of your heavenly, and even of your earthly interests, to enter seriously into your selves to do penance for your sins, and especially for those against the second and third commandments of God. We conjure you, our well-beloved brethren, be docile under the voice of Mary who calls you to penance, and who, on the part of Her Son, threatens you with spiritual and temporal evils, if remaining insensible to Her Maternal admonition, you harden your heart."


"PHILIBERT, Bishop of Grenoble."

Prayer to Jesus in the Blessed Sacrament

Prayer to Jesus in the Blessed Sacrament

By St. Alphonsus Liguori

My Lord Jesus Christ, Who, through the love which You bear toward men, does remain with them day and night in this Sacrament, full of mercy and love, awaiting, inviting and receiving all who come to visit You, I believe that You are present in the Sacrament of the Altar. From the abyss of my nothingness, I adore You. I thank You for all the graces which You have bestowed upon me, particularly for having given me Yourself in this Sacrament, for having given me Your most holy Mother Mary for my advocate, and for having called me to visit You in this church. I pay my homage to Your most loving Heart for these three ends: 1) in thanksgiving for this great Gift; 2) to make amends to You for all the outrages which You do receive in this Sacrament from all Your enemies; 3) I intend by this visit to adore You in all the places on earth in which You are present in this Sacrament and in which You are the least honored and the most abandoned.

My Jesus, I love You with my whole heart. I am sorry for having offended Your infinite goodness so many times. I purpose, with the help of Your grace, never more to offend You; and, at this moment, miserable as I am, I consecrate my whole being to You. I give You my entire will, all my affections and desires and all that I have. From this day forward, do what You will with me and with everything that belongs to me. I ask and desire only Your holy love, the gift of final perseverance and the perfect fulfillment of Your will. I commend to You the souls in Purgatory, particularly those who were most devoted to the Most Blessed Sacrament and to the Blessed Virgin Mary; and I also commend to You all poor sinners. Finally, my dear Saviour, I unite all my affections with the affections of Your most loving Heart; and thus united, I offer them to Your Eternal Father, and I entreat Him, in Your Name and for Your sake, to accept and answer them.


Friday, March 21, 2008

Gardner Churches vandalized during Holy Week...

This calls for prayer. A satanic upside-down cross was spray painted on one Church and another was spray painted with words of a blasphemous reference to Christ. According to Gardner Police, the Bethany Baptist Church on Ryan Street, the Holy Spirit Church on Lovewell Street, and the United Methodist Church on Chestnut Street were spray painted with anti-Christian comments.

Police are asking that anyone who has information on the acts of vandalism call Lt. Poirier [Gardner Police] at (978) 632-5600, ext. 148, and Templeton and Phillipston police at (978) 939-5638.

"Then the soldiers of the governor took Jesus into the praetorium, and they gathered the whole batallion before him. And they stripped him and put a scarlet robe upon him, and plaiting a crown of thorns they put it on his head, and put a reed in his right hand. And kneeling before him they mocked him, saying, 'Hail, King of the Jews!' And they spat upon him, and took the reed and struck him on the head. And when they had mocked him, they stripped him of the robe, and put his own clothes on him, and led him away to crucify him."

- Matthew 27: 27-31

The task of priests

Vatican II, in its' Decree on the Ministry and Life of Priests (Presbyterorum Ordinis) No. 4, had this to say:

"The People of God are joined together primarily by the word of the living God. And rightfully they expect this from their priests. Since no one can be saved who does not first believe, priests, as co-workers with their bishops, have the primary duty of proclaiming the Gospel of God to all. In this way they fulfill the command of the Lord: "Going therefore into the whole world preach the Gospel to every creature" (Mk 16:15), and they establish and build up the People of God. Through the saving word the spark of faith is lit in the hearts of unbelievers, and fed in the hearts of the faithful. This is the way that the congregation of faithful is started and grows, just as the Apostle describes: "Faith comes from hearing, and hearing through the word of Christ" (Rom 10:17).

To all men, therefore, priests are debtors that the truth of the Gospel which they have may be given to others. And so, whether by entering into profitable dialogue they bring people to the worship of God, whether by openly preaching they proclaim the mystery of Christ, or whether in the light of Christ they treat contemporary problems, they are relying not on their own wisdom for it is the word of Christ they teach, and it is to conversion and holiness that they exhort all men."

According to the Council, the task of priests is "not to teach their own wisdom but God's Word." And this task is of no less importance for the priest than his offering of the Eucharistic Sacrifice. Both of these are inseperably linked to each other: "The ministerial priesthood has the task not only of representing Christ - Head of the Church - before the assembly of the faithful, but also of acting in the name of the whole Church when presenting to God the prayer of the Church, and above all when offering the Eucharistic sacrifice." (Catechism of the Catholic Church, No. 1552).

For this reason, priests have the very serious obligation to teach the faithful under their care that it is never licit to have sexual relations outside of marriage; that a Catholic cannot (having been validly married in the Church) after divorce, marry another or otherwise pretend that sexual relations with another individual are somehow "marital"; that "formal cooperation in an abortion constitutes a grave offense" and that '"the Church attaches the canonical penalty of excommunication to this crime against human life" (CCC, 2272); and that "every action which, whether in anticipation of the conjugal act, or in its accomplishment, or in the development of its natural consequences, proposes, whether as an end or as a means, to render procreation impossible, is intrinsically evil.." (CCC, No. 2370, citing Humanae Vitae, No. 14).

The Church proposes these (and other teachings) as true and it does so in the name of Christ. The priest is not to question them. He is not to ignore them or neglect them out of a false sense of "compassion" or "charity." It was Pope Paul VI who said that, "To diminish in no way the saving teaching of Christ constitutes an eminent form of charity for souls." (Humanae Vitae, No. 29). Pope John Paul II reiterated these words in Familiaris Consortio, No. 33.

We are reminded in Lumen Gentium 14 of the Second Vatican Council that: "He is not saved, however, who, though part of the body of the Church, does not persevere in charity. He remains indeed in the bosom of the Church, but, as it were, only in a "bodily" manner and not "in his heart." All the Church's children should remember that their exalted status is to be attributed not to their own merits but to the special grace of Christ. If they fail moreover to respond to that grace in thought, word and deed, not only shall they not be saved but they will be the more severely judged."

When a priest ignores or neglects his duty, his task, of serving the Word of God with fidelity, he fails to persevere in that charity described by Popes Paul VI and John Paul II as a charity which diminishes in no way the saving teaching of Christ. And he will be the more severely judged (Luke 12:48)*.

* "..Much will be required of the person entrusted with much, and still more will be demanded of the person entrusted with more."

Wednesday, March 19, 2008

Signs of the times...

"...America will be destroyed economically by a series of natural disasters."

- Therese Neumann, German mystic, Twentieth Century
"Do not stop to consider the ever thickening
darkness, the sin which has been set up as the
norm of human action, the suffering which is
mounting to its peak and the chastisement
which this humanity is preparing with its own
hands." - Our Lady to Fr. Gobbi, November 5,
Related reading from Mr. Mark Mallett:

Tuesday, March 18, 2008

What should be our prayer during Holy Week?

As I Am, Lord

Because I am obnoxious, forgive me Lord.
Because I am dishonest, forgive me Lord.
Because I am egotistical, forgive me Lord.
Because I am undisciplined, forgive me Lord.
Because I am weak, forgive me Lord.
Because I am impure, forgive me Lord.
Because I am arrogant, forgive me Lord.
Because I am self-centered, forgive me Lord.
Because I am pompous, forgive me Lord.
Because I am insincere, forgive me Lord.
Because I am unchaste, forgive me Lord.
Because I am grasping, forgive me Lord.
Because I am judgmental, forgive me Lord.
Because I am impatient, forgive me Lord.
Because I am shallow, forgive me Lord.
Because I am inconsistent, forgive me Lord.
Because I am unfaithful, forgive me Lord.
Because I am immoral, forgive me Lord.
Because I am ungrateful, forgive me Lord.
Because I am disobedient, forgive me Lord.
Because I am selfish, forgive me Lord.
Because I am lukewarm, forgive me Lord.
Because I am slothful, forgive me Lord.
Because I am unloving, forgive me Lord.
Because I am uncommitted, forgive me Lord.
Because I am sinful, forgive me Lord.
Because I am loved by You, thank you Lord!

Prayer composed by Father Raymond A. Pavlick
Roman Catholic Diocese of Paterson, N.J.

Sunday, March 16, 2008

Why Blessed Salt?

Blessed Salt

Rev. John H. Hampsch, C.M.F.

There is a renewed interest today in the ancient sacramental of blessed salt, especially by charismatics, in healing and deliverance situations. To understand its proper use and its efficacy, it is helpful to review the Scriptural symbolism and its history, since Vatican II urges us to participate "intelligently and actively" in the use of sacramentals, just as in the use of Sacraments.

Salt in the ancient world was a precious commodity (even monopolized by the royalty in Egypt and Persia). Roman soldiers were partially paid with packets of salt ("sal" in Latin); this was the origin of our word "salary" and of phrases like "worth his salt,". Being costly, salt was an appropriate offering to God as a "covenant of salt" (Lev. 2:13; II Chron. 13:5; Num. 18:19) used in sacrifices by the Israelites (Ezck. 43:24) and for the accompanying sacrificial meal (Gen. 31:54).

Belief in salts preservative and healing properties led to its use to dry and harden the skin of newborns (Ezek. 16:4) and to prevent umbilical cord infection. Used for 3500 years to preserve meats from deterioration, it became a symbol of preservation and spiritual incorruptibility that was to characterize anyone offering sacrificial worship. Shared at the sacrificial meal, salt became a symbol of friendship and hospitality, a custom and symbolism still used today in Arab culture. Jesus referred to this salt symbolized friendship covenant in Mark 9:50: "Have salt in yourselves and be at peace with one another"–that is. "preserve that quality (flavor) that makes you a blessing to one another." (Note the double symbol of preservation and flavoring.)

This double primary symbolization is also found in Paul’s advice in Col. 4:6: "Let your conversation be always full of grace, seasoned with salt, so that you may know how to answer everyone." That is, let it be wholesome and savory, preserved from the corrupting conversation of worldlings (3:8 and Eph 4:29). (His use of the word salt may also have referred to another of its symbols: spiritual wisdom, since the Latin word for savor or taste, "sapientia", is the same as for wisdom.)

Some or all of these symbols may have been implied in Jesus’ words to his chosen ones, describing them as the "salt of the earth" (Matt. 5:13). He especially indicated that they were to oppose the world’s corruption, reminding them that, as salt must preserve its own anti-corruptive quality, they too must preserve their anti-corruptive influence in a sin-corrupted world. (See Luke 14:34).

The blessing promised by God on food and water, as well as the prevention of miscarriages and agricultural catastrophes (Exod. 23:25-26) was extended by God through Elisha in Jericho (II Kings 2:20-21), when he was inspired to put salt into the contaminated water. Adding salt to already brackish water to decontaminate it made the miracle all the more impressive, since one would expect the opposite effect. This first miracle of Elisha is the primary Scriptural basis for the sacramental use of blessed salt today, as the Roman Ritual indicates.

As a Catholic sacramental, salt blessed by the liturgical prayer of a priest may be used by itself, unmixed, as in exorcisms, and formerly in the exorcistic prayer at baptism, or it may be mixed with water to make holy water, as the Ritual prescribes (reminiscent of Elisha’s miracle). In whichever form, it is intended to be an instrument of grace to preserve one from the corruption of evil occurring as sin sickness, demonic influence, or other manifestation.

As in the case of all sacramentals, its power comes not from the sign itself, but by means of the Church’s official (liturgical, not private) prayer of blessing–a power the Church derives from Christ himself (see Matt. 16:19 and 18:18). As the Vatican II document on the Liturgy states (art. 61), both Sacraments and sacramentals sanctify us, not of themselves, but by power flowing from the redemptive act of Jesus, elicited by the Church’s intercession to be directed through those external signs and elements. Hence sacramentals like blessed salt and holy water are not to be used superstitiously as having self-contained power, but as "focus-points" funneling one’s faith toward Jesus, just as a flag is used as a "focus-point" of patriotism, or as handkerchiefs were used to focus faith for healing and deliverance by Paul (Acts 19:12).

Thus used non-superstitiously, modest amounts of salt may be sprinkled in one’s bedroom, or across thresholds to prevent burglary, in cars for safety, etc. A few grains in drinking water or used in cooking or as food seasoning often bring astonishing spiritual and physical benefits, as I have personally witnessed many times. As with the use of Sacraments, much depends on the faith and devotion of the person using salt or any sacramental. This faith must be Jesus-centered, as was the faith of the blind man in John 9; he had faith in Jesus, not in the mud and spittle used by Jesus to heal him.

In light of this, we can see why Vatican II states that "there is hardly any proper use of material things which cannot thus be directed toward the sanctification of persons and the praise of God." (art. 61 of Liturgy document). Hence new sacramentals may also be added when rituals are revised (art. 79). Blessed salt is certainly not a new sacramental, but the Holy Spirit seems to be leading many to a new interest in its remarkable power as an instrument of grace and healing.

Any amount may be presented to a priest for his blessing, using the following official prayer from the Roman Ritual:

"Almighty God, we ask you to bless this salt, as once you blessed the salt scattered over the water by the prophet Elisha. Wherever this salt (and water) is sprinkled, drive away the power of evil, and protect us always by the presence of your Holy Spirit. Grant this through Christ our Lord Amen."


The Devil hates salt. Why is this? Fr. Alphonseus Joseph-Mary August Montague Summers explains:

"Salt never appeared at the witches' table. Bodin gives us the reason that it is an emblem of eternity, and Philip Ludwig Elich emphatically draws attention to the absence of salt at these infernal banquets. 'At these meals,' remarks Boguet, 'salt never appears'...Madeleine de la Palud declared that she had never seen salt, olives, or oil at the Devil's feasts." (The History of Witchcraft, p. 145, Barnes and Noble Books).

Where to obtain it:

Thursday, March 13, 2008

Room for a Creator?

JayG over at Defend the Faith has a very interesting post which deserves your attention. The link above will take you to this posting. As I mentioned in my comment, "Christians have nothing to fear from science. But those who reject a Creator do."

According to growing numbers of scientists, the laws and constants of nature are so "finely-tuned," and so many "coincidences" have occurred to allow for the possibility of life, the universe must have come into existence through intentional planning and intelligence.

Tuesday, March 11, 2008

The hour of poverty and defeat approaches....

Our Lady to Fr. Stephano Gobbi,
November 15, 1990,
Malvern PA

I announce to you that the hour of the great trial is on the point of arriving.

The great trial has arrived for your country. How many times, as a concerned and sorrowing mother, have I endeavored to urge my children to follow the path of conversion and of return to the Lord.

I have not been listened to. You have continued to walk along the way of rejection of God, and of His law of love. Sins of impurity have become ever more widespread, and immorality has spread like a sea which has submerged all things. Homosexuality, a sin of impurity which is against nature, has been justified; recourse to the means of preventing life have become commonplace, while abortions - these killings of innocent children, that cry for vengeance before the face of God - have spread and are performed in every part of your homeland.
The moment of divine justice and of great mercy has now arrived. You will know the hour of weakness and of poverty; the hour of suffering and defeat; the purifying hour of the great chastisement.

The great trial has arrived for your Church.

How great is your responsibility, O Pastors of the Holy Church of God! You continue along the path of division from the Pope and of the rejection of his Magisterium; indeed, in a hidden way, there is in preparation a true schism which could soon become open and proclaimed.
(The schism may come when Pope John-Paul II decrees, ex cathedra, that Mary, the Virgin Mother of God, is the Co-Redemptrix, and Co-Mediatrix of grace. This teaching was fought against at the Second Vatican Council by the "progressive" bishops.)

And then, there will remain only a small faithful remnant, over which I will keep watch in the garden of my Immaculate Heart.

The great trial has arrived for all humanity. The chastisement, predicted by me at Fatima and contained in that part of the secret which has not yet been revealed, is about to take place. The great moment of divine justice and of mercy has come upon the world."
Relevant reading:

Monday, March 10, 2008

The Church's teaching on contraception is infallible

The above link takes you to an article written by the late Jesuit Catechist Fr. John Hardon of happy memory. In the words of Fr. Hardon, "The grave sinfulness of contraception is taught infallibly by the Church's ordinary universal teaching authority [Magisterium]."

It is important for Catholics to understand [and to acknowledge] that the Magisterium can and does teach infallibly on matters of faith and morals in the ordinary day-to-day execution of its pastoral mission provided that some very specific conditions are fulfilled. The Dogmatic Constitution on the Church [Lumen Gentium] of the Second Vatican Council clearly described these conditions:

"Although the Bishops, taken individually, do not enjoy the privilege of infallibility, they do, however, proclaim the doctrine of Christ infallibly on the following conditions: namely, when, even though dispersed throughout the entire world but preserving for all that amongst themselves and with Peter's successor the bond of communion, in their authoritative teaching concerning matters of faith or morals, they are in agreement that a particular teaching is to be held definitively and absolutely." (LG, No. 25).

And what the Fathers of Vatican II add to this passage is also of critical importance:

"This is still more clearly the case when, assembled in an ecumenical council, they are, for the universal Church, teachers of and judges in matters of faith and morals, whose judgments must be adhered to with the loyal and obedient assent of faith."

And what do the Vatican II Fathers have to say about artificial contraception? In Gaudium et Spes, No. 51, we read:

"...when there is question of harmonizing conjugal love with the responsible transmission of life, the moral aspects of any procedure does not depend solely on sincere intentions or on an evaluation of motives, but must be determined by objective standards. These, based on the nature of the human person and his acts, preserve the full sense of mutual self-giving and human procreation in the context of true love. Such a goal cannot be achieved unless the virtue of conjugal chastity is sincerely practiced. Relying on these principles, sons of the Church may not undertake methods of birth control which are found blameworthy by the teaching authority of the Church in its unfolding of the divine law. "

Even if the Church's teaching on artificial contraception were not infallible [and it is], this would not constitute an excuse for disregarding the teaching. And anyone who believes otherwise is simply uninformed. Those teachings of the Magisterium on faith and morals which are not proposed infallibly [i.e, presented as definitive and irreformable], are nevertheless still taught with the authority of Jesus Christ Himself. Such teachings are labelled "noninfallible." But we must understand, as Catholics, precisely what this term means. It is a technical term used to designate Magisterial teachings which are authoritatively proposed as true and certain, even while not being taught as absolutely irreformable.

Those who believe that such teachings are to be considered "fallible" teachings have a poor understanding of what is meant by noninfallible teachings. They understand this to mean that they are the equivalent of merely probable opinions or the "official" expressions of some party line. But these teachings, because they represent the "mind" of Christ on the matters in question, are taught with the more than human authority which has been granted to the Magisterium by the will of Christ.

Again, all Catholics should prayerfully read Lumen Gentium, No. 25.

Sunday, March 09, 2008

Homeschooling: Shades of Persecution

California Governor blasts ruling:

Meanwhile, as I documented here:

"Christians [and others of good will who oppose homosexuality] who object to their children being indoctrinated in perversity, will not be allowed to opt out."

Radical homosexual activists continue to bash Christians:

Saturday, March 08, 2008

The "Gospel" according to Oprah...

"I am amazed that you are so quickly forsaking the one who called you by (the) grace (of Christ) for a different gospel (not that there is another). But there are some who are disturbing you and wish to pervert the gospel of Christ. But even if we or an angel from heaven should preach (to you) a gospel other than the one that we preached to you, let that one be accursed!
As we have said before, and now I say again, if anyone preaches to you a gospel other than the one that you received, let that one be accursed
!" (Galatians 1: 6-9).

Related reading:

A spiritual antidote for our strange times:

Friday, March 07, 2008

Rabbi defends prayer for Jews...

Israel also asks God to enlighten the hearts of the Gentiles

By Rabbi Jacob Neusner

"Israel prays for the Gentiles. So the other monotheistic religions, including the Catholic Church, have the right to do the same thing, and no one should feel offended. Any other attitude toward the Gentiles would block them from encountering the one God revealed to Israel in the Torah. The Catholic prayer manifests the same altruistic spirit that characterizes the faith of Judaism. The kingdom of God opens its gates to all of humanity: when they pray and ask for the swift coming of the kingdom of God, the Israelites express the same degree of freedom of spirit that impregnates the papal text of the prayer for the Jews (better: "Holy Israel ") to be recited on Good Friday.

I will explain myself. For the theology of Judaism in regard to the Gentiles, I base myself on the standard liturgy of the synagogue, repeated three times each day. The text to which I refer is the Authorised Daily Prayer Book of the United Hebrew Congregations of the British Empire (London, 1953), which contains the English translation of a prayer for the conversion of the Gentiles, the recitation of which concludes the public rite performed three times a day, every day of the year. In this text, Israel, as a sacred people (not to be confused with the state of Israel), thanks God for having made it different from the other nations, and asks that the world be brought to perfection, when all of humanity will invoke the name of God, kneeling before Him. The text of the prayer begins with the words "It is our duty to praise the Lord of all things," and thanks God for having made Israel different from the other nations of the world.

Israel has its own "destiny," which consists precisely in being different from all the other nations. God is asked to "eliminate the abominations of the earth," when the world will reach perfection under the reign of the Almighty. This prayer for the conversion of "all of the impious of the earth" – who are "all the inhabitants of the world" – is recited not once a year, but every day. It has a parallel in a passage from the Eighteen Blessings, in which God is asked to sweep away "the dominion of arrogance."

We can therefore affirm that in Judaism, God is asked to enlighten the nations and to gather them into his kingdom. Precisely in order to emphasize further this aspiration, the prayer "It is our duty" is followed by this Kaddish: "May He establish his kingdom during our lives and in the days and in the lives of the whole house of Israel." These passages, taken from the daily liturgy of Judaism, leave no doubt about the fact that, when Israel gathers in prayer, it asks God to enlighten the hearts of the Gentiles. The eschatological vision finds its proper nourishment in the prophets and in their vision of a single, reunited humanity, in addition to a freedom of spirit that is extended to all humanity. The condemnation of idolatry does not grant much relief to Christianity or Islam, which are not mentioned. The prayers ask God to hasten the coming of his kingdom.

These Jewish prayers are the counterparts of the one desired by Benedict XVI, which asks for the salvation of all Israel when time reaches its fullness and all humanity enters into the Church. The prayers of Jewish and Christian proselytism share the same eschatological spirit, and keep the gate of salvation open to all men. Both the prayer "It is our duty" and the Catholic "Let us pray also for the Jews" are the concrete expression of the logic of monotheism and of its eschatological hope."


Understand Mr. Foxman?

Probably not.

Related reading:

Cardinal says Pope won't change Jewish prayer:

Wednesday, March 05, 2008

Where is the promise of his coming?

"Know this first of all, that in the last days scoffers will come (to) scoff, living according to their own desires and saying, "Where is the promise of his coming? From the time when our ancestors fell asleep, everything has remained as it was from the beginning of creation." They deliberately ignore the fact that the heavens existed of old and earth was formed out of water and through water by the word of God; through these the world that then existed was destroyed, deluged with water. The present heavens and earth have been reserved by the same word for fire, kept for the day of judgment and of destruction of the godless." (2 Peter 3: 3-7).

Our Lord, in His Divine Mercy, has answered:

"..Souls perish in spite of My bitter Passion. I am giving them the last hope of salvation; that is, the Feast of My Mercy. If they will not adore My Mercy, they will perish for all eternity. Secretary of My Mercy, write, tell souls about this great mercy of Mine, because the awful day, the day of My justice, is near." (Our Lord to St. Faustina, Divine Mercy in My Soul, No. 965).

"Let the greatest sinners place their trust in My mercy. They have the right before others to trust in the abyss of My Mercy. My daughter, write about My mercy towards tormented souls. Souls that make an appeal to My mercy delight Me. To such souls I grant even more graces than they ask. I cannot punish even the greatest sinner if he makes an appeal to My compassion, but on the contrary, I justify him in My unfathomable and inscrutable mercy. Write: before I come as a just Judge, I first open wide the door of My mercy. He who refuses to pass through the door of My mercy must pass through the door of My justice..." (Our Lord to St. Faustina, Divine Mercy in My Soul, No. 1146).

While St. Faustina was in prayer, she heard Our Lord say to her, "I bear a special love for Poland, and if she will be obedient to My will, I will exalt her in might and holiness. From her will come forth the spark that will prepare the world for my final coming." And what is this "spark from Poland"? Pope John Paul II of course. A Pope who was a true mystic consecrated entirely [Totus Tuus] to the Immaculate Heart of Mary, the Mother of Mercy. Recall the first words of his pontificate: "Open wide the doors to Christ."

Pope John Paul II's pontificate was a very real preparation for Our Lord's final coming. Recall his words, "We are now facing the final confrontation between the Church and the anti-Church, of the Gospel and the anti-Gospel… It is a trial which the whole Church . . . must take up." (November 9, 1978, issue of The Wall Street Journal).

There are scoffers. There are people who believe this holy Pontiff, this true mystic, was wrong. But was he? Do we not see (if we are honest) the signs of death and decay throughout our world? A world which has grown tired of striving to be holy?

Now, more than ever, we must have recourse to the Divine Mercy. We must open wide the doors of our hearts to His Mercy. If not, we will face His Justice.

Sunday, March 02, 2008

A priest-scholar on Antichrist....

There are many people today (and very many Catholics among them) who reject the Scriptural prophecy of a personal Antichrist. These people view the idea of a personal Antichrist as a legend of man's fantasy. But the truth regarding the Man of Sin comes to us from God revealing it to His prophets, His Apostles, and to His Church throughout salvation history.

Fr. Paschal Huchede, in his excellent work entitled "History of Antichrist," explains:

" Some have thought that the word Antichrist is only a generic term by which all the enemies of Christ are designated, a word comprising in its signification all heretics, schismatics, apostates, infidels - in a word, all the impious or antichristian empire. St. John seems to hold this opinion when he says, "Even now there are become many Antchrists. He who denieth that Jesus is the Christ, this is Antichrist." (1 In. 2:18-22). But that this supposition is erroneous is proved by the context of the same epistle. "Little children, it is the last hour; and as you have heard that Antichrist cometh, even now there are many Antichrists."

Let it be remembered that in the Greek or original text, the article 'O is employed in connection with Antichrist in the first instance, and not in the second, and the Greek article serves to determine persons and things; whence, it follows that St. John did not mean that all the enemies of Jesus Christ were to be comprised in one generic term expressed by the word ."Antichrist". On the contrary, he very succinctly, but clearly, distinguishes Antichrist personally from all the other adversaries of Christ.

Moreover, the Sacred Scriptures speak of Antichrist in various places as being a particular person or individual. "The Man of Sin," "Son of Perdition," terms such as these cannot mean a collective body since the individual is specifically pointed out, while it is easy to explain why St. John employs the same word to distinguish the enemies and adversaries of Christ. The similitude of tendencies and actions suffices to justify the identity of names. The priests, prophets, and kings of the old law were called "Christs". This, however, did not hinder the Jews from believing in the coming of Christ, the Anointed par excellence, source of all sacerdotal, prophetic, and royal unction. And is not the same thing true of Antichrist and the Antichrists, that is, of the enemies of Christ? But there shall come an Antichrist of whom all the others are only the precursors. And this Man of Sin will combine in himself all the malice collectively found in all the others. All the Fathers and theologians unanimously concur in this belief as to Antichrist's individuality. And consequently, his personal existence and future event must be considered as an object of divine faith, such as stated by Suarez and Bellarmine." (History of Antichrist, pp. 11-12, Tan Books).
"Antichrist will pervert some in his day by exterior persuasion...He is the head of all the wicked because in him wickedness is perfect...As in Christ dwells the fullness of the Godhead, so in Antichrist the fullness of all wickedness. Not indeed in the sense that his humanity is to be assumed by the devil into unity of person...but that the devil by suggestion infuses his wickedness more copiously into him than into all others. In this way all the wicked that have gone before are signs of Antichrist." (St. Thomas Aquinas, Summa III, 8:8).
Are we prepared to argue with the Word of God about the reality of a personal Antichrist? Are we wiser than the Fathers and Doctors of the Church? More enlightened than the Angelic Doctor?
Watch and pray.
Spiritual blindness is caused by pride. His Holiness explains:
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