Thursday, September 29, 2011

The Diocese of Bathurst, New Brunswick: Committed to challenging the faithful?

In an article entitled "Don't Devalue the Faith" from the EWTN website which may be found here, Bert Ghezzi writes, "'Envision Industrial Collapse.' So reads the bumper sticker on my godson Michael's car. I envision myself shaking him and chanting, 'Michael, if industry collapsed,!' Currently, Michael is involved in the environmental movement. He makes time to attend lectures on eliminating noise pollution and recycling. (I wonder if I could interest him in recycling alternative rock music as Mozart. That would be a start at eliminating real noise pollution!) Michael has taken off from school to walk across Ohio, demonstrating his commitment to keeping the earth green.

Don't get me wrong. There's something very healthy about Michael's involvement. Caring for creation is good stewardship. That's not all. Michael's commitment itself is also very healthy It is an expression of the innate idealism of youth. Psychologists tell us that teens naturally want an ideal to live for. William Damon, for example, says that teens he studied were eager to serve others. They also craved challenges and responded positively to the discipline of moral principles. Like all young people, my godson is looking for something worth giving his life for. When he finds it, he will be ready to pay the price.

All that our youthful idealists need is to be pointed in the right direction. To the Lord. To the Church. If that's to happen, our kids need to hear the hard, costly Gospel. They will find the demand that they take up their cross and follow Jesus appealing. A watered-down Gospel will not attract their attention. A softened, warm-fuzzy message may even repel them.

Paul Lauer, the dynamic editor of You! magazine for Catholic teens, says parents must challenge their kids. The demands of the Gospel drew Paul himself from the false ideals of Zen and rock to Christ. 'We must challenge young people,' he says, 'to channel their abundant energy for good, for God, for the Church and the world. Young people have enough energy to climb tall mountains of faith, hope and love. If all we offer them are little molehills, they'll simply go somewhere else for their challenges-to punk rock, drugs or satanism.'

So parents must see to it that their kids hear the good news that will cost them something. How to do it is the question. Here are some suggestions.

We can hold up the example of Mary and the saints. The Church gives them to us to show us that it can be done-that ordinary humans can live the extraordinary life Christ demands.

We can encourage our teens to respond to invitations to serve others. Several pastors I know sponsor summer teen-action programs. They give the teens the opportunity to travel during the summer to serve the
poor in Appalachia. All the kids have to do is work hard all winter to earn the money to pay for their travel and housing. One experience like that can challenge and change a kid for life.

We can give our kids a specific challenge, like embracing the ideal of chastity Molly Kelly, who annually speaks to 50,000 teens about sexual morality, says that when kids hear the truth they recognize it and embrace it freely.

We must also show our kids that we are living for Christ by our example. And we must tell them about it in our own words. We must ask ourselves, 'Have I put Christ first in my life?' so that our kids will make that same choice someday And we must hold fast to our commitment even when the going gets rough."

Excellent advice no?  Now Eudist Father Donat Gionet (God love him) was trying to do just this when he courageously spoke out against abortion and homosexuality.  He was trying to inspire his listeners - both young and old - by preaching hard Gospel truths.  And he was quickly punished by the Diocese of Bathurst, New Brunswick.

Now remember what Bert Ghezzi said about teens?  "A watered-down Gospel will not attract their attention.  A softened, warm-fuzzy message may even repel them."  This applies not only to teens but to adults as well.  Wasn't that the whole point of Thomas Reese's book on the suicide of liberal Christianity?  Spiritual pablum, what I refer to as Cotton Candy Catholicism, a sacharrin spirituality without any real substance, offers the faithful no reason to get out of bed in the morning.  If sin is a thing of the past and dogma is irrelevant, what do I need the Mass for?  Why should I care to listen to anything the priest has to say?  The snooze button on the alarm clock is all the more attractive.
Fr. Gionet [who is still spiritually awake unlike many of his colleagues] gets it.  Fr. Wesley Wade, the vicar general of the Bathurst Diocese, does not.  Which is why he accused Fr. Gionet of "pastoral insensitivity."  Meanwhile, Fr. Wade has freely acknowledged that, "There's no question...there has been a decrease in church population over the years."  See here.

That trend will no doubt continue.  If Catholics want to hear a secular "gospel," they don't have to attend Mass within the Bathurst Diocese.  They have merely to turn on their television sets where that "gospel" is preached 24 hours a day. 

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Would the Diocese of Bathurst, New Brunswick classify Pope Benedict XVI's comments as lacking "pastoral sensitivity"?

By now you've probably heard or read about Father Donat Gionet, a member of the Eudist Fathers who was suspended by the Diocese of Bathurst, New Brunswick for denouncing abortion and homosexual behavior.  Father Wesley Wade, the diocese's vicar general, told Radio-Canada that Fr. Gionet's comments were consistent with Church teaching, but lacked the proper "pastoral sensitivity."  See here.

This begs the question: Would Father Wade and his Bishop Valery Vienneau classify Pope Benedict XVI's remarks about abortion and same-sex "marriage," spoken while on a visit to Portugal last year, as lacking "pastoral sensitivity"?  For Pope Benedict XVI, courageous champion of truth that he is, referred to abortion and same-sex "marriage" as being "among the most insidious and dangerous challenges" to society.  See here.

But then the Holy Father was also critical of Catholics who are ashamed of their faith and too willing to "lend a hand to secularism."  Is that not the case here?  Dr. Dietrich von Hildebrand, in his classic work Trojan Horse in the City of God, explains that, "..even some Catholics who experience the exclusivity of truth as liberating and who are not tempted to revolt against its alleged infringement on their freedom believe that the fight against error is uncharitable.  The anathema of the Holy Church seems to them hard and inhuman.  They have forgotten the admirable dictum of St. Augustine, 'Kill the error; love the one who errs.'  They are unwilling to accept the idea that the killing of error is inseperable from love for the one who errs.  Their false irenicism makes them blind to the glorious character of the anathema when spoken by the infallible Church...It should not be forgotten that the words of St. Augustine apply not only to the anathema which is reserved exclusively to the infallible magisterium of the Church; they also imply that everyone should be eager to help liberate his neighbor from error...When, out of a confused notion of charity, a soft-heartedness, or a superficial benevolence, we believe that we should leave the erring person in his error, we have ceased to take him seriously as a person and have no interest in his objective good." (Trojan Horse in the City of God, pp. 200-202).

Bishop Vienneau has described Fr. Gionet's comments as "divisive."  But again, as Dr. Hildebrand explains: "False irenicism is motivated by a misconceived charity at the service of a meaningless unity.  It places unity above truth.  Having severed the essential link between charity and defense of the truth, irenicism is more concerned with reaching a unity with all men than with leading them to Christ and His eternal truth.  It ignores the fact that real unity can be reached only in truth.  Our Lord's prayer 'that they may be one' (John 17:11)  implies being one in Him and must not be seperated from His words in John: 'And other sheep I have that are not of this fold.  Them also I must bring and they shall hear my voice.  And there shall be one fold and one shepherd.' (John 10:16)." (p. 203).

The Diocese of Bathurst has had its problems with priests who were homosexual predators.  See here.  One of these priests was Father Levi Noel, who was sentenced to eight years in prison in January of 2010 for 22 sex-related charges involving 18 boys.  See here.  I have not been able to find any public statement from Church officials in Bathurst accusing these homosexual predators of being "pastorally insensitive" or as being guilty of "dividing the community."

But those accusations are hurled against a faithful priest whose comments were, by the vicar general's own admission, "consistent with Church teaching."

You'll have to excuse me at this point.  I have to go vomit.

Related reading: Homosexual activists are already using Fr. Gionet's suspension for propaganda purposes.

Sunday, September 25, 2011

Stacy Trasancos, homosexual activists and dialogue...

Earlier this year I posted on how an Ontario panel, organized by the University of Toronto's Institute for Studies in Education, discussed how to silence religious opposition to LGBT propaganda in schools.  See here.  Although there are, of course, homosexual persons who are people of good will, the homosexual movement itself is totalitarian in nature and seeks to impose its agenda on all.  Even if this means silencing religious opposition.

Most of those who advance the radical homosexual agenda are simply not interested in authentic dialogue.  See here for example.  Stacy Trasancos discovered this recently when she blogged on homosexual activity and received many insults and even threats directed against herself and her family.  Readers of this Blog know that I have been threatened repeatedly.  One homosexual activist called the Mothertown News to tell them that he was going to kill me with his high-powered rifle because I had written a piece for that paper explaining the magisterial teaching of the Church regarding homosexual acts.

In his Encyclical Letter Redemptoris Missio (The Mission of the Redeemer), Pope John Paul II said that, "The Church proposes; she imposes nothing." (No. 39). Such was the teaching of Vatican II: "The Church strictly forbids forcing anyone to embrace the faith, or alluring or enticing people by worrisome wiles. By the same token, she also strongly insists on this right, that no one be frightened away from the faith by unjust vexations on the part of others." (Ad Gentes, No. 13). And Dignitatis Humanae, No. 10 teaches that: "It is one of the major tenets of Catholic doctrine that man's response to God in faith must be free: no one therefore is to be forced to embrace the Christian faith against his own will. This doctrine is contained in the word of God and it was constantly proclaimed by the Fathers of the Church. The act of faith is of its very nature a free act. Man, redeemed by Christ the Savior and through Christ Jesus called to be God's adopted son, cannot give his adherence to God revealing Himself unless, under the drawing of the Father, he offers to God the reasonable and free submission of faith. It is therefore completely in accord with the nature of faith that in matters religious every manner of coercion on the part of men should be excluded. In consequence, the principle of religious freedom makes no small contribution to the creation of an environment in which men can without hindrance be invited to the Christian faith, embrace it of their own free will, and profess it effectively in their whole manner of life."

But while the Church respects freedom of conscience and shuns any form of coercion, our Holy Father reminds us that, "We are building a dictatorship of relativism that does not recognize anything as definitive and whose ultimate goal consists solely of one's own ego and desires.

We, however, have a different goal: the Son of God, the true man. He is the measure of true humanism. An "adult" faith is not a faith that follows the trends of fashion and the latest novelty; a mature adult faith is deeply rooted in friendship with Christ. It is this friendship that opens us up to all that is good and gives us a criterion by which to distinguish the true from the false, and deceit from truth."

This dictatorship of relativism seeks to impose its immoral agenda on Christians in the name of "tolerance." But this "tolerance" is a sham. It is simply an attempt to make an idol out of a false conception of freedom. Again, our Holy Father explains that, "..what clearly stands behind the modern era's radical demand for freedom is the promise: You will be like God...The implicit goal of all modern freedom movements is, in the end, to be like a god, dependent on nothing and nobody, with one's own freedom not restricted by anyone else's...The primeval error of such a radically developed desire for freedom lies in the idea of a divinity that is conceived as being purely egotistical. The god thus conceived of is, not God, but an idol, indeed, the image of what the Christian tradition would call the devil, the anti-god, because therein lies the radical opposite of the true God: the true God is, of his own nature, being-for (Father), being-from (Son), and being-with (Holy Spirit). Yet man is in the image of God precisely because the being-for , from, and with constitute the basic anthropological shape. Whenever people try to free themselves from this, they are moving, not toward divinity, but toward dehumanizing, toward the destruction of being itself through the destruction of truth. The Jacobin variant of the idea of a rebellion against being human in itself, rebellion against truth, and that is why it leads people - as Sartre percipiently observed - into a self-contradictory existence that we call hell. It has thus become fairly clear that freedom is linked to a yardstick, the yardstick of reality - to truth*. Freedom to destroy oneself or to destroy others is not freedom but a diabolical parody. The freedom of man is a shared freedom, freedom in a coexistence of other freedoms, which are mutually limiting and thus mutually supportive: freedom must be measured according to what I am, what we are - otherwise it abolishes itself."

In the name of "tolerance," the New World Order seeks to impose its rebellion from truth on all. It will not tolerate any dissent, any disagreement. Coercion is an acceptable tool in a dictatorship. Soon, the New Order will use violence to achieve its goals and not just coercion and propaganda. In the end, every dictatorship must rely on violence in its vain attempt to hold onto power.

Already the signs are emerging.  Catholics who oppose homosexuality on religious and moral grounds are being demonized.  So too the teaching authority of the Catholic Church.  See here for example.  Before a dictatorship can resort to violence, it must first demonize the group it wants to suppress or eliminate.

Friday, September 23, 2011

Behind the radical homosexual movement: Freemasonry

As Wikipedia explains, "Albert Pike, (December 29, 1809–April 2, 1891) was an attorney, Confederate officer, writer, and Freemason. Pike is the only Confederate military officer or figure to be honored with an outdoor statue in Washington, D.C. (in Judiciary Square) mostly due to his masonic connection with President Andrew Johnson, who pardoned Pike for treason after the American Civil War."

Pike would become one of Freemasonry's leading voices.  It was Albert Pike, quoted in A.C. de la Rive: La Femme et L'Enfant dans la Franc-Maconnerie Universelle, p. 588, who said that: "To the crowd me must say: we worship a God, but it is the God one adores without superstition.  To you, Soverign Grand Inspectors General, we say this, that you may repeat it to the brethren of the 32nd, 31st and 30th degrees [lower degrees are kept in the dark within Masonry, my note]: all of us initiates of the high degrees should maintain the Masonic religion in the purity of the Luciferian doctrine.  If Lucifer were not God, would Adonay, the God of the Christians, whose deeds prove his cruelty, perfidy and hatred of man, his barbarism and repulsion for science, would Adonay and his priests calumniate him?  Yes, Lucifer is God, and unfortunately Adonay is also God...religious philosophy in its purity and truth consists in the belief in Lucifer, the equal of Adonay."

In his book Morals and Dogma of the Ancient and Accepted Scottish Rite of Freemasonry, published in 1871, Pike alluded to the Luciferic initiations within Freemasonry, suggesting that Masons engage in homosexual oral sex and homosexual orgies.  He wrote, "To the Initiates in the Mysteries of Eleusis was exhibited the spectacle of these two principles, in the successive scenes of Darkness and Light which passed before their eyes. To the profoundest darkness, accompanied with illusions and horrid phantoms, succeeded the most brilliant light, whose splendor blazed round the statue of the Goddess. The candidate, says Dion Chrysostomus, passed into a mysterious temple, of astonishing magnitude and beauty, where were exhibited to him many mystic scenes; where his ears were stunned with many voices; and where Darkness and Light successively passed before him. And Themistius in like manner describes the Initiate, when about to enter into that part of the sanctuary tenanted by the Goddess, as filled with fear and religious awe, wavering, uncertain in what direction to advance through the profound darkness that envelopes him. But when the Hierophant has opened the entrance to the inmost sanctuary, and removed the robe that hides the Goddess, he exhibits her to the Initiate, resplendent with divine light. The thick shadow and gloomy atmosphere which had environed the candidate vanish; he is filled with a vivid and glowing enthusiasm, that lifts his soul out of the profound dejection in which it was plunged; and the purest light succeeds to the thickest darkness.

In a fragment of the same writer, preserved by Stobæus, we learn that the Initiate, up to the moment when his initiation is to be consummated, is alarmed by every kind of sight: that astonishment and terror take his soul captive; he trembles; cold sweat flows from his body; until the moment when the Light is shown him,--a most astounding Light,--the brilliant scene of Elysium, where he sees charming meadows overarched by a clear sky, and festivals celebrated by dances; where he hears harmonious voices, and the majestic chants of the Hierophants; and views the sacred spectacles. Then, absolutely free, and enfranchised from the dominion of all ills, he mingles with the crowd of Initiates, and, crowned with flowers, celebrates with them the holy orgies, in the brilliant realms of ether, and the dwelling-place of Ormuzd." (p. 403, see also p. 427).

On page 393 of his Luciferic treatise, Pike writes, "The human soul is itself δαιμονιος a God within the mind, capable through its own power of rivalling the canonization of the Hero, of making itself immortal by the practice of the good, and the contemplation of the beautiful and true. The removal to the Happy Islands could only be understood mythically; everything earthly must die; Man, like Œdipus, is wounded from his birth, his real elysium can exist only beyond the grave. Dionusos died and descended to the shades. His passion was the great Secret of the Mysteries; as Death is the Grand Mystery of existence. His death, typical of Nature's Death, or of her periodical decay and restoration, was one of the many symbols of the palingenesia or second birth of man.

Man descended from the elemental Forces or Titans [Elohim], who fed on the body of the Pantheistic Deity creating the Universe by self-sacrifice, commemorates in sacramental observance this mysterious passion; and while partaking of the raw flesh of the victim, seems to be invigorated by a fresh draught from the fountain of universal life, to receive a new pledge of regenerated existence. Death is the inseparable antecedent of life; the seed dies in order to produce the plant, and earth itself is rent asunder and dies at the birth of Dionusos. Hence the significancy of the phallus, or of its inoffensive substitute, the obelisk, rising as an emblem of resurrection by the tomb of buried Deity at Lerna or at Sais."*  Elsewhere in his book, he explains that the initiate "commemorates in sacramental observance this mysterious passion."  In other words, the initiate engages in homosexual oral sex to commemorate "this mysterious passion."

The ultimate goal of Masonry is to convert the world to Lucifer.  But the Catholic Church stands in its way.  Which is why Masonry has infiltrated the Church.  To attempt to destroy her from within.  On June 3, 1989, Our Lady told Father Stefano Gobbi:

“Beloved sons, today you are gathered in cenacles of prayer to celebrate the Feast of the Immaculate Heart of your heavenly Mother. From every part of the world I have called you to consecrate yourselves to my Immaculate Heart, and you have responded with filial love and generosity. I have now formed for myself my army, with those children who have accepted my request and have listened to my voice.

The time has come when my Immaculate Heart must be glorified by the Church and by all humanity because, in these times of the apostasy, of the purification and of the great tribulation, my Immaculate Heart is the only refuge and the way which leads you to the God of salvation and of peace. Above all, my Immaculate Heart becomes today the sign of my sure victory, in the great struggle which is being fought out between the followers of the huge Red Dragon and the followers of the Woman Clothed with the Sun.

In this terrible struggle, there comes up from the sea, to the aid of the Dragon, a beast like a leopard. If the Red Dragon is Marxist atheism, the black beast is Freemasonry. The Dragon manifests himself in the force of his power; the black beast on the other hand acts in the shadow, keeps out of sight and hides himself in such a way as to enter in everywhere. He has the claws of a bear and the mouth of a lion, because he works everywhere with cunning and with the means of social communication, that is to say, through propaganda. The seven heads indicate the various Masonic lodges, which act everywhere in a subtle and dangerous way.

This black beast has ten horns and, on the horns, ten crowns, which are signs of dominion and royalty. Masonry rules and governs throughout the whole world by means of the ten horns. The horn, in the biblical world, has always been an instrument of amplification, a way of making one's voice better heard, a strong means of communication.

For this reason, God communicated his will to his people by means of ten horns which made his law known: the ten commandments. The one who accepts them and observes them walks in life along the road of the divine will, of joy and of peace. The one who does the will of the Father accepts the word of his Son and shares in the redemption accomplished by Him. Jesus gives to souls the very divine life, through grace, that He won for us through his sacrifice carried out on Calvary.

The grace of the redemption is communicated by means of the seven sacraments. With grace there becomes implanted in the soul the seeds of supernatural life which are the virtues. Among these, the most important are the three theological and the four cardinal virtues: faith, hope, charity, prudence, fortitude, justice and temperance. In the divine sun of the seven gifts of the Holy Spirit, these virtues germinate, grow, becomes more and more developed and thus lead the soul along the luminous way of love and of sanctity.

The aim of Masonry: blaspheming God

The task of the black beast, namely of Masonry, is that of fighting, in a subtle way, but tenaciously, to obstruct souls from traveling along this way, pointed out by the Father and the Son and lighted up by the gifts of the Spirit. In fact if the Red Dragon works to bring all humanity to do without God, to the denial of God, and therefore spreads the error of atheism, the aim of Masonry is not to deny God, but to blaspheme Him. The beast opens his mouth to utter blasphemies against God, to blaspheme his name and his dwelling place, and against all those who dwell in heaven. The greatest blasphemy is that of denying the worship due to God alone by giving it to creatures and to Satan himself. This is why in these times, behind the perverse action of Freemasonry, there are being spread everywhere black masses and the satanic cult. Moreover Masonic acts, by every means, to prevent souls from being saved and thus it endeavors to bring to nothing the redemption accomplished by Christ.

If the Lord has communicated his law with the ten commandments, Freemasonry spreads everywhere, through the power of its ten horns, a law which is completely opposed to that of God.

To the commandment of the Lord: “You shall not have any other God but me,” it builds other false idols, before which many today prostrate themselves in adoration.

To the commandment : “You shall not take the name of God in vain,” it sets itself up in opposition by blaspheming God and his Christ, in many subtle and diabolical ways, even to reducing his Name indecorously to the level of a brand-name of an object of sale and of producing sacrilegious films concerning his life and his divine Person.

To the commandment: “Remember to keep holy the Sabbath Day,” it transforms the Sunday into a weekend, into a day of sports, of competitions and of entertainments.

To the commandment: “Honor your father and your mother,” it proposes a new model of family based on cohabitation, even between homosexuals.**

To the commandment: “You shall not commit impure acts,” it justifies, exalts and propagates every form of impurity, even to the justification of acts against nature.

To the commandment: “You shall not kill,” it has succeeded in making abortion legal everywhere, in making euthanasia acceptable, and in causing respect due to the value of human life to all but disappear.

To the commandment: “You shall not steal,” it works to the end that theft, violence, kidnapping and robbery spread more and more.

To the commandment: “You shall not bear false witness,” it acts in such a way that the law of deceit, lying and duplicity becomes more and more propagated.

To the commandment: “You shall not covet the goods and the wife of another,” it works to corrupt in the depths of the conscience, betraying the mind and the heart of man.

In this way souls become driven along the perverse and wicked road of disobedience to the laws of the Lord, become submerged in sin and are thus prevented from receiving the gift of grace and of the life of God.

To the seven theological and cardinal virtues, which are the fruit of living in the grace of God, Freemasonry counters with the diffusion of the seven capital vices, which are the fruit of living habitually in the state of sin. To faith it opposes pride; to hope, lust; to charity, avarice; to prudence, anger; to fortitude, sloth; to justice, envy; to temperance, gluttony.

Whoever becomes a victim of the seven capital vices is gradually led to take away the worship that is due to God alone, in order to give it to false divinities, who are the very personification of all these vices. And in this consists the greatest and most horrible blasphemy. This is why on every head of the beats there is written a blasphemous name. Each Masonic lodge has the task of making a different divinity adored.

The first head bears the blasphemous name of pride, which opposes itself to the virtue of faith, and leads one to offer worship to the god of human reason and haughtiness, of technology and progress.

The second head bears the blasphemous name of lust, which opposes itself to the virtue of hope, and brings one to offer worship to the god of sexuality and of impurity.

The third head bears the blasphemous name of avarice, which opposes itself to the virtue of charity, and spreads everywhere the worship of the god of money.

The fourth head bears the blasphemous name of anger, which opposes itself to the virtue of prudence, and leads one to offer worship to the god of discord and division.

The fifth head bears the blasphemous name of sloth, which opposes itself to the virtue of fortitude, and disseminates the worship of the idol of fear of public opinion and of exploitation.

The sixth head bears the blasphemous name of envy, which opposes itself to the virtue of justice, and leads one to offer worship to the idol of violence and of war.

The seventh head beats the blasphemous name of gluttony, which opposes itself to the virtue of temperance, and leads one to offer worship to the so highly extolled idol of hedonism, of materialism and of pleasure.

The task of the Masonic lodges is that of working today, with great astuteness, to bring humanity everywhere to disdain the holy law of God, to work in open opposition to the ten commandments, and to take away the worship due to God alone in order to offer it to certain false idols which become extolled and adored by an ever increasing number of people: reason ,flesh, money, discord, domination, violence, pleasure. Thus souls are precipitated into the dark slavery of evil, of vice and of sin and, at the moment of death and of the judgment of God, into the pool of eternal fire which is hell.

Now you understand how, in these times, against the terrible and insidious attack of the black beast, namely of Masonry, my Immaculate Heart becomes your refuge and the sure road which brings you to God. In my Immaculate Heart there is delineated the tactic made use of by your heavenly Mother, to fight back against and to defeat the subtle plot made use of by the black beast.

For this reason I am training all my children to observe the ten commandments of God; to live the Gospel to the letter; to make frequent use of the sacraments, especially those of penance and eucharistic communion, as necessary helps in order to remain in the grace of God; to practice the virtues vigorously; to walk away along the path of goodness, of love, of purity and of holiness.

Thus I am making use of you, my little children who have consecrated yourselves to me, to unmask all these subtle snares which the black beast sets for you and to make futile in the end the great attack which Masonry has launched today against Christ and his Church. And in the end, especially in his greatest defeat, there will appear in all its splendor, the triumph of my Immaculate Heart in the world.”

*  Find the entire book here.

**  What does the El Paso Diocese mean by "the many kind of families"?  This is an entirely legitimate question.  See here and here.

Thursday, September 22, 2011

Father Michael Rodriguez transferred to another parish...his reward for witnessing to the truth about marriage

Remember Father Michael Rodriguez?  He's the courageous priest of the El Paso [Texas] Diocese who has taken an active stand defending Catholic moral teaching and the Church's understanding of the sacrament of marriage.  In a guest column for the Opinion section of the El Paso Times last december, Fr. Rodriguez wrote, "Jesus Christ’s praise of John the Baptist is without parallel, 'among those born of women, no one is greater than he' (Luke 7:28). Thus, in John the Baptist, a 'voice crying out in the desert,' we’re given the greatest prophet. Well, how did he meet his end? Faithful to God’s law, John the Baptist rebuked Herod Antipas, ruler of Galilee, and told him he couldn’t take his brother’s wife as his own. As a result, Herod had John arrested, bound, imprisoned, and eventually beheaded (Matthew 14:3-12).

St. John the Baptist suffered martyrdom for crying out in defense of the institution of marriage! Fifteen centuries later, in England, another saint and martyr, Sir Thomas More, was beheaded for witnessing to the truth about marriage. Another political leader, this time King Henry VIII, sought to redefine marriage in order to suit his own particular agenda. The king wanted to obtain a 'legal divorce' from his wife, Queen Catherine of Aragon, in order to marry Anne Boleyn. Thomas More, lord chancellor of England at the time, and second in rank and power only to the king himself, courageously opposed Henry’s sin. This cost More his life.

St. Thomas More was beheaded on July 6, 1535. He shed his blood out of love and fidelity to Christ, the Catholic Church, and the sacrament of marriage. Today, in the year of our Lord, 2010, in El Paso, Texas, a number of our City Council members appear to be morally blind, if not depraved. They seem intent on abusing their political power and undermining the institution of marriage, all in the pursuit of an agenda which could, at best, be described as misguided.

If in the future, a majority of City Council members are adamant in seeking government recognition of same-sex unions under the cloak of 'toleration, fairness, and equal rights,' then every single Catholic must reject these machinations which are tantamount to a blatant corruption of public morality. Catholics can never permit a 'non-discrimination amendment to the city charter' which intends, or will allow, gravely sinful relationships to be equated with the Holy Sacrament of Matrimony.

Rome has been very clear in mandating that all Catholics must oppose any and all government attempts to legalize same-sex unions.

The U.S. Catholic bishops, in their November 2009 pastoral letter on marriage, have written, "One of the most troubling developments in contemporary culture is the proposition that persons of the same sex can ‘marry.’ “This proposal attempts to redefine the nature of marriage and the family and, as a result, harms both the intrinsic dignity of every human person and the common good of society.” They teach further, “to promote and protect marriage as the union of one man and one woman is itself a matter of justice.”

The Roman Catholic Church is categorically opposed to the legalization of same-sex unions, and with good reason. This position has nothing to do with discrimination. Discrimination is against persons; we Catholics are opposing sinful actions. It’s irresponsible and irrational to ignore the essential moral distinction between a person and his/her actions. No one has a “civil right” to redefine the institution of marriage! It’s an utter breakdown in basic logic to speak about “fairness and equality” without first settling the issue of right vs. wrong! The latter is the moral foundation of the former!

Dear Catholics, it’s in our blood to be voices crying out in the desert, witnessing to the truth with love! St. John the Baptist, pray for us. St. Thomas More, pray for us."  (See here).

As I've said time and again at this Blog, the new humanitarian religion of Antichrist will embrace homosexuality and any other form of deviancy. Pleasure will be the ultimate principle. And children must be indoctrinated in the ways of Hell so that they may take their place in the New Satanic Society, the Moloch State where the only thing which will be forbidden is orthodox Christianity. Under this new satanic religion, all will be encouraged to create their own reality according to what feels right to them. This spirit is already infecting certain corners of the Church. See here for example.

Persecution is almost always very subtle at first.  Today, those who oppose the homosexual agenda are gradually being ostracized.  But the day will come when those who murder us will believe they are doing the will of God.

And they will do this because they have not received the love of truth.  Today, increasing numbers of those who are only within the Church in a bodily manner [see Lumen Gentium, 14)  are coming to embrace doctrines of demons.  The day is quickly approaching [and in some corners of the world is already here] when orthodox Christianity will be deemed a "threat" to progress as men build a new Tower of Babel.

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Let's all give thanks to Our Lady of La Salette

Have you heard the exciting news?  Pope Benedict XVI has named Auxiliary Bishop Peter A. Libasci of Rockville Centre as the 10th Bishop of Manchester.  The appointment was announced on September 19th by Msgr. Jean-Francois Lantheaume, charge d'affaires at the apostolic nunciature in Washington, D.C..  See here.

There are no coincidences in the spiritual life.  I truly believe that.  Which is why I am thanking Our Lady of La Salette for her maternal intercession and the gift of Bishop Libasci to New Hampshire.  Already Bishop Libasci has indicated his desire to listen to the faithful of the Granite State.  This is a far cry from his predecessor, who was overheard screaming at parishioners of St. Patrick's Parish in Jaffrey and who wasn't very pastoral as he transferred abusive priests from parish to parish.

Let us all pray that Bishop Libasci will listen to Our Lady of La Salette: Reconciler of Sinners, and lead the Diocese on the sure road of penance.  Most of us are aware that sin destroys our relationship with God and that it also undermines our relationships with family members, friends and others with whom we come into contact. Reconciliation refers to that precise effect of Christ's redemption of the human race by His sacrificial death on the Cross which restores our relationship with God and breaks down the barriers of sin which prevent us from engaging in authentic relationships with others.

In the words of the Catechism of the Catholic Church, "Conversion is accomplished in daily life by gestures of reconciliation, concern for the poor, the exercise and defense of justice and right, by the admission of faults to one's brethren, fraternal correction, revision of life, examination of conscience, spiritual direction, acceptance of suffering, endurance of persecution for the sake of righteousness. Taking up one's cross each day and following Jesus is the surest way of penance." (1435).

In other words, our transformation in Christ, our daily conversion, is made manifest by such gestures of reconciliation by which we demonstrate our commitment toward the theological virtue of charity "by which we love God above all things for his own sake, and our neighbor as ourselves for the love of God" (CCC, 1822). We are told in Sacred Scripture that a faith without works is dead (James 2:14-19). An authentic reconciliation, therefore, will show itself in a charity which embraces both God and neighbor.

As Jean Jaouen so eloquently puts it, "..Christian compassion cannot be a cerebral, fleshless reality. It is completely impossible for one who loves people coldly to dissociate eternal salvation from the temporal well-being of a human person. A person is a whole. Time is eternity already begun yet still not completely visible. The conflict will be resolved if Christian apostles learn to live with their people while remaining present to the Lady who, with her Son, weeps over both the death of souls and the death of little children. 'Lady of heaven, empress of earth.' Through the Virgin Mediator and Queen, apostles will find a balance between the demands of heaven and those of earth." (Jean Jaouen, m.s., "A Grace Called La Salette: a story for the world," pp. 327-328, grassroots publishing international, Enfield, New Hampshire, English edition 1991).

A balance between the demands of heaven and those of earth. Do we maintain such a balance in our own lives? Or are we so caught up in the affairs of this world that we neglect our personal conversion? It's no secret why there is no real peace in our world. Peace is more than the mere absence of conflict. Peace is the tranquility of order which results from people and other realities being as they ought to be. As Pope Paul VI reminded us in his Christmas message of 1966: "Peace is not a primary good, but a resultant and derivative good that infers and requires a prior good. This prior good is precisely order, justice, the harmony of things."

I know Our Lady of La Salette has a special plan for the 10th Bishop of Manchester.  And I pray she will cover His Excellency with her mantle.

To put it simply: we will never be at peace with others if we are not at peace with ourselves. And how can we be at peace with ourselves unless we are living an authentic prayer life and confessing our sins before the Lord Jesus?

Monday, September 19, 2011

The choice is ours: The way of penance or the way of selfishness...

In an excellent article on the way of penance in the life of Saint Francis, Father Vincenzo Cherubino Bigi, OFM explains that, "The way of penance is putting God as the center of all we value so that neither profit, nor personal success direct our lives in this world. What matters now is living in God's Presence, and allowing Christ center place in our lives. To be attentive to Christ as my Model and to try in some way to integrate Him in my life is the point of departure and the continual renewal of the true sense of penance: a continuous conversion which is profoundly internalized. It is not the mortification of the body but the conversion of one's spirit.

To live in the presence of Christ, to live in the presence of God is to assume in oneself the law of love which was expressed by Christ in His life. Beginning from this point, we will seek to discover the essential moments of the penitential life of Francis. The fundamental point already described is that of putting God at the center of our daily life, to refer to God in the continual horizon of our daily choices.

In our daily activities, we can find ourselves in a fortunate condition: we can do, good in our actions. The conversion of Francis is to be found right here: in referring the good we do back to God.

This is the interior poverty of man as against the boast of the Pharisee who attributes to himself the possibility of doing good, of saving himself by means of the observance of the law in his good works.

St. Francis always has this concern at the core: all the good that I perform by my actions is not mine, but is God's work. From here flows the centrality of God in my life. It is not my possessions, not my riches, my prosperity but everything good that I am able to do is a gift from God and so I refer it back to God in thanksgiving and in self- emptying.

The heart of one who does penance is a heart empty of self ... which recognizes that the journey of this world is a gift of God. All the good things one does in the course of daily living are not his riches, his possessions but rather come from the God Who is the Giver of every good gift and so must be referred to, and brought back to Him. Hence, the first characteristic of the penance of St. Francis is purity of spirit, of interiority, is a poverty of the heart.

Referring things back to God implies yet something else, it implies not seeking our reward in this world. "You have received your reward." Many times in life after doing something good we expect to receive the reward for this good act and, when we don't receive it, we complain to God: I chose the good and still I have this sickness, etc.. To be converted means not looking for a reward in this world. Here is the deep reality of the Spirit, namely that if I do good in order to receive a reward, it means that I wish to possess, I wish to enrich myself, I wish to have a lasting place in this world. Often St. Francis in his writings admonishes us on this very point. The gift of yourself must be free just as the gift of God is free. The reference back to God means not seeking in this world one's reward: this is what it means to be free.

When Christ multiplied the bread and when they would have made him king, He hid himself, because if He had agreed to be King then, it would have been this miracle which ruled men. Jesus would be manipulating them through persuading them by satisfying their physical needs. The reward of bread as a promise for meeting Christ would have taken away their liberty.

I am free when I am able to give, not when my conduct is influenced by selfishness. even when it is a spiritual selfishness, which always seeks to be rewarded and gratified. One who acts in this way is not yet converted.

Penance is above all this deep freedom from one's selfish demands in order to be perfectly free for God and our neighbor. It is a profound guiding concept which interiorizes the notion of changing one's mind. Generally our mind is concentrated on ourselves, our power, our benefits, our possessions, our success. We really become the center of our life. Conversion means to put God at the center and myself to the side." (See here).

Note the very important point Father Bigi makes here: "I am free when I am able to give, not when my conduct is influenced by selfishness."   Dissent from received Catholic teaching is the result of selfishness. As Pope Benedict XVI explained back in 2009: "Conflict and lack of reconciliation in the world stem from the fact that we are locked into our own interests and opinions, into our own little private world. Selfishness, both individual and collective, makes us prisoners of our interests and our desires that stand against the truth and separate us from one another. Awake, the Gospel tells us. Step outside, so as to enter the great communal truth, the communion of the one God. To awake, then, means to develop a receptivity for God: for the silent promptings with which he chooses to guide us; for the many indications of his presence..." (Christmas homily 2009).

It is in the Sacrament of Penance that frees us from selfishness.  That teaches us to develop a receptivity to God and to place Him at the center and ourselves to the side.  Because most within the Church have lost the spirit of penance, a spirit of aggression and self-assertion has taken its place.  A spirit of selfishness and pride.  It is this spirit of selfishness which is crippling the Church.  The spirit which demands women's ordination even though the Church has said that such is not possible.  The spirit which demands that the Church change her teaching and conform herself to the "modern world."

The way of penance is the way of peace.  Which is why there is so little peace today.  And so, on the anniversary of the La Salette apparition, let us pray:

Remember, dear Lady of La Salette, true Mother of Sorrows, the tears which thou didst shed for me on Calvary; be mindful also of the unceasing care which thou dost exercise to shield me from the justice of God; and consider whether thou canst now abandon thy child, for whom thou hast done so much. Inspired by this consoling thought, I come to cast myself at thy feet, in spite of my infidelity and ingratitude. Reject not my prayer, O Virgin of reconciliation, convert me, obtain for me the grace to love Jesus Christ above all things and to console thee too by living a holy life, in order that one day I may be able to see thee in Heaven. Amen.

Related reading here.

Saturday, September 17, 2011

The Catholic Free Press and Eco-Feminist Sister Kathy Sherman, CSJ

Donna Steichen, the author of Ungodly Rage, explains the identifying characteristics of Eco-feminism.  She writes, "Religion is the heart of the Catholic school curriculum. But in today's Catholic schools, it may not be the Catholic religion. Feminist spirituality-the religion of WomenChurch-is pushing Catholicism out of the heart of the parochial curriculum in many places. Its identifying characteristics are the gradual displacement of traditional Catholic doctrine, culture and practices with a subtle but relentless infusion of feminist theology, steady but stealthy movement toward the worship of a female deity in feminist rituals, inappropriate if not obsessive focus on sex education, and fanatic environmentalism..."  (See here).

Writing in this week's edition of the dissent-friendly diocesan newspaper The Catholic Free Press [Diocese of Worcester, Massachusetts], Mary Donovan, a member of the Worcester Commission for Women, an organization which promotes New Age relativism with the blessing of the diocese, promotes yet another speaker who will be appearing at the Commission for Women's "Gather Us In" conference to be held this November.  Writing about Kathy Sherman, CSJ, she says, "She has a strong commitment to earth issues, to saving and healing planet Earth.  She works to help others understand that the universe is an interconnected whole that is sacred and in need of our protection..." (See here).

Actually, Sister Sherman does more than that.  She promotes the Eco-feminism described by Donna Steichen above.  And, as this article explains, "Eco-feminism is basically the same as the earth-centered and feminist centered belief of Wicca (witchcraft).  Note how Mary Donovan capitalizes the word "earth" even though it comes at the end of the sentence.  For the Eco-feminist, the Wiccan, worships the earth.  Eco-feminism embraces not only a fanatic environmentalism but relativism.  As Pope Benedict XVI has warned, "There is..a consciously antirationalist response to the experience that 'everything is relative,' a complex reality that is lumped together under the title of New Age. The way out of the dilemma of relativism is now sought, not in a new encounter of the 'I' with the 'Thou' or the 'We,' but in overcoming subjective consciousness, in a re-entry into the dance of the cosmos through ecstasy. As in the case of Gnosis in the ancient world, this way believes itself to be fully in tune with all the teachings and the claims of science, making use of scientific knowledge of every kind (biology, psychology, sociology, physics). At the same time, however, it offers against this background a a completely antirationalist pattern of religion, a modern 'mysticism': the absolute is, not something to be believed in, but something to be experienced. God is not a person distinct from the world; rather, he is the spiritual energy that is at work throughout the universe. Religion means bringing my self into tune with the cosmic whole, the transcending of all divisions...Objectifying reason, New Age thinking tells us, closes our way to the mystery of reality; existing as the self shuts us out from the fullness of cosmic reality; it destroys the harmony of the whole and is the real reason for our being unredeemed. Redemption lies in breaking down the limits of the self, in plunging into the fullness of life and all that is living, in going back home to the universe....The gods are returning. They have become more credible than God. Aboriginal rites must be renewed in which the self is initiated into the mysteries of the universe and freed from its own self. There are many reasons for the renewal of pre-Christian religions and cults that is being widely undertaken today. If there is no truth shared by everyone, a truth that is valid simply because it is true, then Christianity is merely a foreign import, a form of spiritual imperialism, which needs to be shaken off just as much as political imperialism. If what takes place in the sacraments is not the encounter with the one living God of all men, then they are empty rituals that mean nothing and give us nothing and, at best, allow us to sense the numinous element that is actively present in all religions. It then seems to make better sense to seek after what was originally our own than to permit alien and antiquated things to be imposed on us. But above all, if the 'rational intoxication' of the Christian mystery cannot make us intoxicated with God, then we just have to conjure up the real, concrete intoxication of effective ecstasies, the passionate power of which catches us up and turns us, at least for a moment, into gods..." (Truth and Tolerance, pp. 126-128).

Related reading here.

Friday, September 16, 2011

"You will know the hour of weakness and of poverty; the hour of suffering and defeat; the purifying hour of the great chastisement.."

Our Lady told Fr. Stephano Gobbi on November 15, 1990, at Malvern Pennsylvania: "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...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."

Many chose to ignore Our Lady's warning.  Many continue to do so.  But Our Lady's dire prophetic warning is being fulfilled before our very eyes.  The website notes how: "As Gerald Celente always says, when people lose everything that they have, they tend to lose it. The very fabric of American society is starting to come apart, and it is frightening to even think about what is going to happen if the economy gets even worse.

The following are 20 examples of desperate people doing desperate things in America....

#1 As the price of gold has risen to unprecedented heights, thieves have taken notice. This summer there has been an epidemic of gold robberies in the city of Los Angeles. Store owners have felt forced to significantly beef us security. In fact, store owners have added so much security that at this point "parts of downtown Los Angeles now look more like a militarized zone than a commercial corridor."

But it is not just Los Angeles that is having a major problem with gold robberies. The following is a brief excerpt from a recent article by Thomas Watkins....

In Oakland, police say dozens of women have had gold necklaces yanked from their necks on the street. More than 100 similar thefts have been reported in Los Angeles, a rash of robberies is taking place in St. Paul, Minn., and police in Phoenix say muggers chatted up high school girls then ripped their gold necklaces from them.

“We’ve never seen this,” said Oakland police Sgt. Holly Joshi.

#2 When the level of trust in society starts declining significantly, people start becoming very paranoid. And when people feel constantly threatened, they tend to lash out in unusual ways. For example, one man wearing a Dallas Cowboys jersey actually smuggled a taser into a recent game between the Cowboys and the New York Jets and started zapping people with it.

#3 When people become truly desperate, they also tend to become highly unpredictable. Just consider what Justino Sanchez Diaz did recently during a family dinner....

Before the family gathered for dinner, Sanchez-Diaz soaked the walls of the dining room in gasoline and set cans of gas under the furniture. And when the 13 members of the family sat down to eat, the man came out with a can of kerosene and splashed it all over everyone, then set them on fire with a blowtorch.

#4 When desperation spreads throughout a society, you literally do not know who you can trust. Right now identity theft in the United States is at epidemic levels and it is getting worse. Every time you give someone your information now, there is a chance that your identity could be compromised. Just consider the following example from the state of Texas....

If you have a mind sick enough to rip off desperately ill people, you probably think to yourself, "Cancer patients -- hey, they may die soon, so what'll they care?''

Houston police say Shantel Moore, 29, apparently had that kind of coldhearted and inhumane logic. The Stafford woman worked for Methodist Hospital in Houston, and cops say she stole identity information from cancer patients and used it to get tons of payday loan money.

#5 When thieves get desperate, they also tend to become very bold. A reader named Mark left the following comment on one of my recent articles....

Some tweekers drove up last week looking for scrap metal and one was out of their truck and heading to the shop when I came out of the house. It used to be that strangers would not even cross our bridge or get out of their car wondering about what the dogs would do. Times are changing and not for the better.

#6 In some areas of the country, desperate people are not just searching for scrap metal. As one reader shared recently, there are some parts of the U.S. that are literally being transformed into hellholes by hordes of desperate people....

Here, in the California desert, many vacant houses are being taken over. Fixtures are being ripped out and sold as scrap. Trench latrines are being dug in backyards and water is being pilfered from neighboring pools and hoses. While most of these folks are simply trying to keep a roof over their heads (while they keep their heads down), many are also setting up meth labs and in-door marijuana grows.

I can see the eventual day when the total breakdown of the economy and our society will drive thousands from the cities. A lot of those will be looking for ‘opportunities’.

As sad as it is, if you’re not one of the most unfortunate, it’s time to prepare a defense for your goods, family and self. You are going to be viewed as wealthy, no matter how poor you feel, by someone with nothing left to lose.

Do not rely on police or government authorities. We all saw how that went in New Orleans. Be ready as an individual family unit.

#7 Sadly, family units all over the country are breaking down. The hearts of parents have become very cold. Some people are so desperate that they are even trying to sell their own babies. For example, one grandmother in Florida has been accused of trying to sell her newborn grandson for $75,000.

In another incident, a Vancouver, Washington woman has been charged with trying to sell her newborn baby in front of a Taco Bell. She was only trying to get somewhere between $500 and $5000 for her baby.

#8 What some parents are doing to their children is absolutely horrifying. If you have a weak stomach, you may not want to read this one. In Louisiana recently, a 30-year-old man decapitated his 7-year-old son with a meat cleaver and left his head on the side of the road. What made this crime even more shocking is the fact that his son was suffering from cerebral palsy and was confined to a wheelchair. Reportedly the man had gotten "tired of taking care" of the young child. The following is an excerpt from a Daily Mail report about this horrible crime....

A father has admitted to chopping his son's head off with a meat cleaver and leaving it in the roadside outside his home so that the child's mother would see it.

Keep in mind that the father and son had not had a fight. Rather, the father had just "gotten tired" of taking care of the son.

#9 But it isn't just parents that are becoming cold-hearted. In Georgia recently, a 14-year-old teen stabbed his grandmother and his great-grandmother with a sword. The 77-year-old great grandmother is dead, but it looks like the grandmother is going to be okay.

#10 All over the nation, there are reports of kids killing their parents. A 21-year-old man in the Chicago area is accused of killing his father with a weed trimmer while his father was sleeping in bed.

#11 In one of the most famous cases of parental murder this year, a 17-year-old Florida teen killed his parents with a hammer, hid their bodies in the master bedroom, and then invited dozens of people over for a massive house party.

Did this kind of stuff happen in America 50 or 60 years ago?

#12 Not all desperate people are committing crimes of violence. In fact, some desperate Americans are now purposely committing crimes just so that they can be arrested and receive free medical care.

Yes, you read that correctly. There are 50 million Americans without health insurance and some of them are now purposely breaking the law so that they can go to prison and receive the care that they need. Just consider the following example from an article in the Gaston Gazette....

James Richard Verone woke up June 9 with a sense of anticipation.

He took a shower.

Ironed his shirt.

Hailed a cab.

Then robbed a bank.

He wasn’t especially nervous. If anything, Verone said he was excited to finally execute his plan to gain access to free medical care.

#13 Millions of other desperate Americans are not lashing out or committing crimes at all. Instead, they are just quietly suffering. A reader named Richard recently left a comment in which he shared the desperation that he encountered during a recent trip to the beach....

I was at the beach today, it was almost dark. I watched as a well dressed lady in her 50′s walked onto the public access deck and laid down her things. She looked around to see if she was being observed, felt safe enough to proceed with her shameful task and then she pulled out several small plastic bags. Quickly she went through the trash can and began to remove anything of value, especially aluminum drink cans. That is when I made my way to her. At first she seemed embarrassed, but after I assured her that I sold scrap metal sometimes for extra money, she seemed relieved. She then released a pent up storm of sorrow and hurt as she spoke of her shame and humiliation.

She had recently lost her husband of 32 years and was all alone. She lived in a home she couldn’t afford and was about to lose. Attempts to sell brought only discouragement and despair. “Soon” she said, “I will be homeless.” She said the cans were her insurance, her only means of real survival, since she had already run out of unemployment money. When I tried to offer to help in some way, she suddenly shut me down and refused any help. I told her she wasn’t alone and prayed with her. It certainly made the beach a sad place to be. In the coming months I feel we will all see this same scene played out over and over.

#14 Other Americans have become so desperate that they have given up completely. The following tragic example is from an article posted on MSN Money....

On the morning she realized her husband and son would learn the family was losing their house, Carlene Balderrama, 53, faxed a note to the mortgage company, then went to the basement and shot herself.

"I hope you're more compassionate with my husband than you were with me," she wrote in a suicide note left for the company.

#15 When people get desperate, violence tends to increase. We are starting to see shocking examples of this all over the country. For example, at least 42 people were hit by gunfire in New York City over the Labor Day weekend.

Another disturbing thing that we are seeing is the trend toward mob violence. Previously, I have written about the epidemic of "flash mob" crimes that we are now seeing all over the nation. When large groups of people start banding together to commit violent crimes, that is a very disturbing sign.

#16 When criminals get desperate, they don't care who they attack and they will take everything from you that they can. For example, three young thugs in the Bronx recently beat the living daylights out of a 64-year-old man and took his wallet, his cellphone and even his Bible.

#17 If you are attacked, are you going to call the police? Are you sure that they can be trusted? Even police officers are committing desperate acts these days. Just check out what one police officer in Chicago is charged with doing....

A Chicago Police officer stole $50,000 from his ailing elderly father to pay off his bills and gambling debts and unsuccessfully attempted to swipe his dad’s retirement savings by impersonating him

#18 In the old days, thieves would usually only focus on items of high value. But these days it seems like there is nothing that they will not steal. There have been reports coming in from all over America of thieves stealing air conditioners, drain covers, hair extensions and even embalming fluid.

#19 When people get desperate, they will often do things that they never even imagined that they would be willing to do. In Utah recently, an unemployed 28-year-old man starting running advertisements in which he actually offered to serve as "human prey" for hunters for the bargain price of $10,000. For an additional $2,000, he said that he would be willing to allow hunters to "hunt" him down while running around naked.

#20 When criminals become desperate, they often lose all common sense. In the San Diego area recently, one desperate thief actually tried to rob a 7-11 convenience store while dressed in a Gumby costume. Apparently the clerk thought it was a prank, so the thief tried to pull a weapon but was unable to do so because the costume was too awkward. Police are still searching for the suspect, who is described as being very tall, very green and very thin.

America is quickly becoming a lawless place. Yes, authorities in many areas will attempt to crack down, but what are they going to do when millions of people all start doing desperate things all at once?" (See here).

We are being prepared for dictatorship.  Things will continue to disintegrate across society.  Crime will continue to explode.  Jobs will continue to be lost.  The love of many will continue to grow cold.  All of this represents chastisement.  Because men have opted for sin, a Man of Sin will soon enter onto the world stage.

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

What is going on at Saint Joseph's Parish in Fitchburg?

The Sentinel & Enterprise is reporting that, "Residents living near St. Joseph Church on Woodland Street expressed shock Tuesday after hearing that a priest who had served at the parish has been charged with possessing child pornography and stealing from the church.  The Rev. Lowe Dongor received a summons to Fitchburg District Court on Friday and was arraigned Monday on charges of larceny over $250, larceny from a building, and having child pornography in his possession."

The article goes on to explain that Fr. Dongor, age 35, "..was put on leave in July, at which time he was assigned to reside at the Holy Name of Jesus House of Studies in Worcester, which houses college-age men who are thinking about entering the priesthood."  Isn't that nice.  Images depicting young girls, approximately 10 to 11 years of age, in various stages of nudity, were found on Fr. Dongor's computers.  "In addition," the Sentinel & Enterprise reports, "many of the pictures depicted a chest and genitals prominently displayed."

So what does the Diocese do?  It houses Fr. Dongor at a house of studies which serves as the home for young men who are discerning a priestly vocation. 

According to the Sentinel & Enterprise, "Deacon Jim Couture declined to comment on the matter."  This doesn't exactly surprise me.  This is the same deacon who has promoted the work of Father John Powell, S.J. in the past.  See here.

What is going on at St. Joseph's Parish in Fitchburg?

I'm beginning to understand why the "leadership" at St. Joseph's Parish didn't want me around and excluded me from participation in parish ministry.

Gardasil may not cause mental retardation but listening to mainstream media propaganda just might

By now most of you have heard how Michelle Bachmann, in criticizing Texas Governor Rick Perry for mandating that sixth grade girls in his state be vaccinated against HPV - a sexually transmitted disease that has been linked to the development of cervical cancer - implied that Gardasil could lead to mental retardation.  Granted that was a stupid thing to say.  But equally troubling is the response of the mainstream media to this fiasco.  In their zeal to denounce Bachmann, certain media types have ignored the fact that vaccination with Gardasil can have disastrous consequences.

According to Dr. Mercalo, "There have been a total of 47 deaths linked to Gardasil since it was brought to market in 2006, according to a press release issued by Judicial Watch, which says it has obtained records from the FDA. In 2008 alone 28 women and girls died after receiving Gardasil injections (up from 19 deaths in 2007). In all the FDA documented 6,723 adverse events related to Gardasil in 2008, of which 1,061 were considered "serious," and 142 considered "life threatening,” the group reported. Further, as Barbara Loe Fisher reported, by the summer of 2009 Gardasil had already caused more than 15,000 reports of vaccine reactions, including more than 3,000 injuries and 48 deaths.

However, it’s estimated that only between 1 percent and 10 percent of vaccine adverse events are ever reported, which means there could actually be anywhere from 150,000 to 1.5 million vaccine injuries related to Gardasil." (See here).

The National Vaccine Information Center (NVIC) has said that, "With cervical cancer causing about one percent of all cancer deaths in American women due to routine pap screening, it was inappropriate for the FDA to fast track Gardasil.  It is way too early to direct all young girls to get three doses of a vaccine that has not been proven safe or effective in their age group."
Reliable sources have reported that Governor Rick Perry has received $21,000 from Merck's political action committee.  See here.

Granted, Michelle Bachmann is not a scientist.  Her suggestion that Gardasil may be linked to mental retardation was simply wrong.  But far more disturbing is the attitude of the mainstream media to a vaccine which has been linked to serious injury and even death.

Disastrous consequences indeed!

Sunday, September 11, 2011

The Catholic Free Press, Elizabeth Dreyer and gratitude

In this week's Catholic Free Press, in an article entitled "Women's Conference to present diverse program in November," Mary Donovan explains that the "Gather Us In" Conference " co-sponsored by the Bishop of Worcester and the Diocesan Commission for Women" and that this is "the sixth edition of Gather Us In."  Ms. Donovan notes that, "The theme of this year is Gratitude: Acknowledging God's Grace in Our Lives."

This is most ironic since one of the guest speakers at the conference this November will be Elizabeth Dreyer, a radical feminist theologian who has agitated for a long time in support of women's ordination while asserting that, "There's a lot of misogyny and oppression" in the Catholic Church. Ms. Dreyer is one of 16 dissident theologians who signed what is known as The Madeleva Manifesto. This manifesto states:

"In the tradition of Sister Madeleva Wolff, CSC, we sixteen Madeleva lecturers have been invited to speak a message of hope and courage to women in the church. Reflecting the diversity of gifts bestowed on us by the Spirit, we speak from our particular experiences and vocations, yet share in a universal vision that is faithful to our catholic tradition.

• To women in ministry and theological studies we say: re-imagine what it means to be the whole body of Christ. The way things are now is not the design of God.

• To young women looking for models of prophetic leadership, we say: walk with us as we seek to follow the way of Jesus Christ, who inspires our hope and guides our concerns. The Spirit calls us to a gospel feminism that respects the human dignity of all, and who inspires us to be faithful disciples, to stay in the struggle to overcome oppression of all kinds whether based on gender, sexual orientation, race, or class.

• To women who are tempted by the demons of despair and indifference, we say: re-imagine what it means to be a full human being made in the image of God, and to live and speak this truth in our daily lives.

• To women who suffer the cost of discipleship we say: you are not alone. We remember those who have gone before us, who first held up for us the pearl of great price, the richness of Catholic thought and spirituality. We give thanks to those who continue to mentor us.

• To the young women of the church we say: carry forward the cause of gospel feminism. We will be with you along the way, sharing what we have learned about the freedom, joy and power of contemplative intimacy with God. We ask you to join us in a commitment to far-reaching transformation of church and society in non-violent ways. We deplore, and hold ourselves morally bound, to protest and resist, in church and society, all actions, customs, laws and structures that treat women or men as less than fully human. We pledge ourselves to carry forth the heritage of biblical justice which mandates that all persons share in right relationship with each other, with the cosmos, and with the Creator.

We hold ourselves responsible to look for the holy in unexpected places and persons, and pledge ourselves to continued energetic dialogue about issues of freedom and responsibility for women. We invite others of all traditions to join us in imagining the great shalom of God."

April 29, 2000
Feast of St. Catherine of Siena, lay woman, Doctor of the Church
St. Mary’s College, Notre Dame, Ind.
See here.

Ms. Dreyer is an angry feminist who believes herself to be wiser than the Lord Jesus who teaches us through His Church's Magisterium.  Not only does she believe that the ordination of women to the ministerial priesthood is an open question, she has demanded it, signing a petition which reads, "Break the Silence on Women's Ordination.  Shatter the Stained Glass Ceiling."  See here.

This is not gratitude for received Catholic teaching.  As Dr. Dietrich von Hildebrand explains, "He who is truly free knows - with a living knowledge - that everything is an unmerited gift of the merciful goodness of God; that before him we are beggars devoid of any claim whatsoever.  From our very existence, our vocation, and our redemption, to every ray of the sun that enlivens us with its warmth and its luster, and to every drop of water that quenches our thirst - everything is a gratuitous gift of His inexhaustible goodness.  All the truths we are blessed in knowing, all beauty we are allowed to enjoy; every moment of good health and every bit of nourishment we take - all these are undeserved benefits in no wise due to us.  How often do we misuse the gifts of God; with how much ingratitude and indifference do we requite His blessings!" (Transformation in Christ, pp. 293-294).

Isn't this precisely the attitude of Elizabeth Dreyer?  Rather than being grateful to God for His generosity and for all the gifts He has lavished upon her, she shakes her fist angrily at the Good God demanding that which is not possible: women's ordination.

The masthead of The Catholic Free Press cites from John 8:32: "You shall know the truth and the truth shall make you free."  And yet, the newspaper has demonstrated a blatant and reckless disregard for truth over the years.  See here and here for example.  Which is probably why the publication will not tell the truth about the Worcester Commission for Women or its "Gather Us In" Conference.

Related reading here.

Cardinal O'Malley's Catholic Media Secretariat: Will it evangelize the digital continent or contribute to the digital wasteland?

Cardinal Sean O'Malley, at his Blog, writes: "...I've asked Scot Landry, Secretary for Catholic Media, to discuss what we're doing as an archdiocese to evangelize through the use of media."  And then Mr. Landry chimes in:

"On July 1, 2010, Cardinal Seán established the Catholic Media Secretariat. This action instituted a group into the organizational structure of the Archdiocese whose purpose is to implement Pope Benedict’s call to put all forms of media, old and new, at the service of the primary mission of the Church, which is to share the Good News of Jesus Christ with the world. The Holy Father specifically asked the Church at all levels to evangelize the 'digital continent.'"  Mr. Landry then quotes from our Holy Father Pope Benedict XVI:

"I ask you to introduce into the culture of this new environment of communications and information technology the values on which you have built your lives. In the early life of the Church, the great Apostles and their disciples brought the Good News of Jesus to the Greek and Roman world. Just as, at that time, a fruitful evangelization required that careful attention be given to understanding the culture and customs of those pagan peoples so that the truth of the gospel would touch their hearts and minds, so also today, the proclamation of Christ in the world of new technologies requires a profound knowledge of this world if the technologies are to serve our mission adequately...

It falls, in particular, to [those] who have an almost spontaneous affinity for the new means of communication, to take on the responsibility for the evangelization of this 'digital continent'. Be sure to announce the Gospel to your contemporaries with enthusiasm. You know their fears and their hopes, their aspirations and their disappointments: the greatest gift you can give to them is to share with them the 'Good News' of a God who became man, who suffered, died and rose again to save all people. Human hearts are yearning for a world where love endures, where gifts are shared, where unity is built, where freedom finds meaning in truth, and where identity is found in respectful communion. Our faith can respond to these expectations: may you become its heralds!" (Message Of The Holy Father Benedict XVI For The 43rd World Communications Day, 24 January 2009).

Mr. Landry asserts that, "Under Cardinal Sean's leadership and initiative, the Archdiocese of Boston has been a leader in embracing new methods to share our faith, connect with others, and inspire others to help us build a civilization of love."

Civilization of love?  Deal Hudson notes here how the Archdiocese of Boston blocked access to the Boston Catholic Insider Blog. He writes, "The controversy leading to this action by the Boston Archdiocese was precipitated by the troubling issues surrounding the proposed sale of Caritas Christi Healthcare, owned by the Archdiocese, to Cerebus Capital. Having watched this story develop for quite a while, and having kept abreast of the ongoing narrative, I agree with those blogging at that the sale is rife with conflict of interest issues. This attempt of the Boston Archdiocese to act in loco parentis towards its employees not only looks silly but also demonstrates an ignorance of how the internet works. Whoever made the decision to block the 'offending' web site will have a hard time blocking all the Catholic web sites containing links to information about the sale of Caritas Christi.."

Yes, feel the love.  While orthodox Catholics are castigated and accused of harming the community, here's what has passed for "evangelization" which builds a "civilization of love."   And let's not forget the "Rainbow Ministry" at St. Cecilia's Parish in Boston's Back Bay.

In an essay on the meaning of evangelization, Father Vincent Miceli, S.J. wrote, "Being the work of God and man in cooperation, it must ever be a thrilling and awesome adventure. We can say, however, that this sanctifying activity proclaims Christ to those who do not know Him, preaches the Gospel to them through catechesis and missionary sermons, confers Baptism and other sacraments and tirelessly exhorts converts to scale the heights of sanctity. Jesus Christ, Himself, the Good News of God, was the very first and greatest evangelizer. He proclaimed an absolute Kingdom of God, making everything else relative. He proclaimed salvation, namely liberation from sin, Satan, death, a liberation that bestowed upon sinners returned to God grace, resurrection in immortality and glorification in the triune God. He proclaimed the price man must pay for his salvation, namely that men must gain Heaven by violence, i.e., through a life of penance, toil, and suffering accepted in the spirit of the Suffering Servant of God. And above all He proclaimed that man must undergo that interior renewal which the Gospel calls metanoia, that is the radical change of heart and mind which destroys 'the old man of sin' and creates 'the new man of grace.'"

Fr. Miceli then explains that there are obstacles to evangelization. He writes, "St Thomas Aquinas teaches that three things are necessary for a soul to find, follow and embrace Christ. First, a person must know what he ought to believe. Second, he must know what he ought to desire. Third, he must know what he ought to do. Now ignorance is the first great obstacle to evangelization. Catholics, therefore, should grow in a profound knowledge of their Faith through a constant reading and reflection on the Gospels and a faithful following of the teachings of the Magisterium. Only thus will they come to appreciate the Catholic Faith as a gift of God that is true, good and beautiful. They then will be moved by the Holy Spirit to bring non-Catholics to share this gift from God with them..."

Finally, surveying the Catholic Church in the United States, Fr. Miceli writes, "Unfortunately, the fact is that the Church in the United States, instead of being the crusading, courageous, evangelizing society Christ founded it to be, has become a cream-puff chaplaincy to the converted - and because of this attitude is failing to hold on even to these...How are we to stir up again the spirit of evangelization? Pope Paul VI in Evangelii Nuntiandi gives us our marching orders:

'On us particularly, the pastors of the Church, rests the responsibility for reshaping with boldness and wisdom, but in complete fidelity to the content of evangelization, the means that are most suitable and effective for communicating the Gospel message to the men and women of our times.'" (Fr. Vincent P. Miceli, citing Pope Paul VI in Evangelii Nuntiandi, No. 40).

With complete fidelity to the content of evangelization!  Without this, the "digital continent" will simply become a "digital wasteland."

Thursday, September 08, 2011

German website calls Pope Benedict XVI "anti-human" and "anti-democratic."

Already, two weeks before his official visit to Germany, Pope Benedict XVI is being attacked by Christianophobic individuals and groups in Germany.  A new German website titled "Der Papst kommt" - The Pope is coming - has been created.  This website touts itself as the "Alliance against the inhumane gender and sexual politics of the Pope."

In its resolution, Der Papst kommt states: Besuch von Papst Benedikt XVI. In Deutschland Breites Bündnis protestiert gegen die menschenfeindliche Geschlechter- und Sexualpolitik des Papstes. Im September 2011 besucht Papst Benedikt XVI. Deutschland. Dabei spricht er auch vor dem Deutschen Bundestag in Berlin. Dagegen protestieren wir. Der Papst steht für eine menschenfeindliche Geschlechter- und Sexualpolitik. Sie grenzt Menschen aus und diskriminiert.

Wir wenden uns gegen den Papst als einen der Hauptverantwortlichen für die Unterdrückung von Lesben, Schwulen und Transgender auf der Welt. Auf internationaler Ebene kämpft der Vatikanstaat Seite an Seite selbst mit brutalen Diktaturen gegen die Menschenrechte von Lesben, Schwulen und Transgender. Die Entscheidungen demokratisch gewählter Parlamente zur rechtlichen Anerkennung gleichgeschlechtlicher Paare schmäht Joseph Ratzinger als „Legalisierung des Bösen” und ruft Katholiken zum Widerstand auf.

Wir kritisieren die Missachtung der Rechte von Frauen, die der Vatikan in seinem Kampf gegen Gleichberechtigung und Selbstbestimmung an den Tag legt. Gerade die sexuellen und reproduktiven Rechte von Frauen werden, z.B. durch das Verbot von Schwangerschaftsverhütung und -abbruch, deutlich negiert.

Wir verurteilen die Sexual- und Kondom-Politik des Papstes. Sie behindert in vielen Ländern massiv wirksame HIV-Prävention, stürzt Menschen in schwere Gewissenskonflikte, verdammt sie zu Krankheit und nimmt ihren Tod damit billigend in Kauf.

Wir protestieren gegen die demokratiefeindliche Politik von Papst Benedikt XVI., der die freiheitliche Gesellschaft eine „Diktatur des Relativismus” nennt. So hat er z.B. die Pius-Brüder wieder in die Kirche aufgenommen, obwohl sich in deren Reihen Holocaust-Leugner finden, sie die freiheitliche Demokratie ablehnen und die Strafbarkeit gleichgeschlechtlicher Beziehungen fordern.

Diese Kritik wird von vielen gläubigen Katholikinnen und Katholiken geteilt, die wir einladen, unseren Protest zu unterstützen.

Den Bestrebungen des Papstes, die eigenen Dogmen zur staatlichen Norm anderer Länder zu erheben, setzen wir unseren Widerstand entgegen.

Die menschenfeindliche Geschlechter- und Sexualpolitik von Papst Benedikt XVI. darf nicht unwidersprochen bleiben. Wir rufen alle Menschen zum friedlichen Protest in Berlin auf." (See here).

The main points of this resolution in English:

"The Pope is anti-human...We oppose the Pope as one of those most responsible for the oppression of lesbians, gay men and transgendered in the world.  At the international level, the Vatican is fighting side by side even with dictatorships against the human rights of lesbian, gay and transgendered people..We criticize the disregard for the rights of women..especially the sexual and reproductive rights of women, for example, by banning contraception and abortion..We protest against the anti-democratic policies of Pope Benedict XVI, who calls the liberal society a 'dictatorship of relativism.'"

 The irony here is astounding.  For as Pope John Paul II reminded us in Centesimus Annus, "Authentic democracy is possible only in a State ruled by law, and on the basis of a correct conception of the human person. It requires that the necessary conditions be present for the advancement both of the individual through education and formation in true ideals, and of the 'subjectivity' of society through the creation of structures of participation and shared responsibility. 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."

Authentic Christians have always and everywhere accepted a "healthy pluralism." At the same time, such Christians have also understood that they have an obligation to acknowledge their beliefs and to preach the moral message given to them by the Lord Jesus. The follower of the Lord Jesus possesses a qualified certainty regarding the tenets of Natural Law and other truths which are revealed by God and help guide the conduct of man. Consequently, the authentic Christian understands that Christian ethical principles inform human society.  Secular Humanists and those committed toward advancing the radical homosexual agenda have their own agenda and will do everything in their power to censor the Christian view. 
The authentic Christian [or any person of good will] will reject the sophism of those who declare that anyone who does not buy into the Dictatorship of Relativism (a pluralism of opinions which rejects any and all absolute truth or even its possibility) is a "fanatic" or a "fundamentalist." On the contrary, such people will defend the truth in a positive manner. And while respecting persons and living out charity, they will proclaim the truth without fear.

This is the mind of Christ. As Pope John Paul II taught us in his Encyclical Letter Veritatis Splendor, No. 95:

"The Church's teaching, and in particular her firmness in defending the universal and permanent validity of the precepts prohibiting intrinsically evil acts, is not infrequently seen as the sign of an intolerable intransigence, particularly with regard to the enormously complex and conflict-filled situations present in the moral life of individuals and of society today; this intransigence is said to be in contrast with the Church's motherhood. The Church, one hears, is lacking in understanding and compassion. But the Church's motherhood can never in fact be separated from her teaching mission, which she must always carry out as the faithful Bride of Christ, who is the Truth in person. As Teacher, she never tires of proclaiming the moral norm... The Church is in no way the author or the arbiter of this norm. In obedience to the truth which is Christ, whose image is reflected in the nature and dignity of the human person, the Church interprets the moral norm and proposes it to all people of good will, without concealing its demands of radicalness and perfection...

In fact, genuine understanding and compassion must mean love for the person, for his true good, for his authentic freedom. And this does not result, certainly, from concealing or weakening moral truth, but rather from proposing it in its most profound meaning as an outpouring of God's eternal Wisdom, which we have received in Christ, and as a service to man, to the growth of his freedom and to the attainment of his happiness."

Although I'm a Frenchman, I was born in Germany and I have a high regard for the German people.  They are in my prayers.  I believe they will see Der Papst kommt for what it is: an exercise in anti-Catholicism and intolerance.

The image above speaks volumes about Der Papst kommt. 
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