Thursday, December 18, 2014

Mainstream Catholic Media - Their Sinful Disregard For The Truth

Last year Greta Van Suserten interviewed Sarah Palin.  Both agreed that the mainstream media had become partners of the Obamanistas by covering up their dangerous derelictions of duty.  I'll post the video and below that, I have some words for the Catholic mainstream media.

What these ladies said goes double for the Catholic mainstream media.  By that, I mean the Catholic News Service (arm of the USCCB), all the diocesan media outlets (our own Catholic Standard leads the pack in mediocrity).  I regret that I must add EWTN to that group; were Mother Angelica of decent health, I'm sure EWTN would never have devolved into a "church of nice" brown-nosing outfit.

I started this blog because the Catholic Standard would not address real issues facing Catholics.  Most notably at the time, they wouldn't address the terrible disobedience to Canon 915 that was demonstrated by Cardinal McCarrick, then Archbishop of Washington.  Until that time, the Standard at least had a "letters to the editor" section.  At that time, the section was permanently discontinued.

Then, of course, there was the incident two Lents ago, at my own Church, when a priest at my parish actually obeyed Canon 915 and was promptly thrown under the bus for it.  Remember Father Marcel Guarnizo?  The incident made international news.  Not one peep was mentioned in the Standard, nor was it mentioned in Our Parish Times, published by the Catholic Businessmen's Network.  That is nothing short of dishonesty by omission, and a complete disregard for standards of journalism.

So if the "lamestream media" (to coin Palin's term) won't do their job, it's up to us -the laity to do it for them.  Hence the existence of this blog and many others (some on the right tool bar).  That is one of the points made in yesterday's Vortex.  We need to be talking about these matters.  We need to shine the light on cockroaches and to do so relentlessly.  We are the Church Militant, not the Church Mellow nor the Church Milquetoast nor the Church Meelymouth.

Ora et labora!

Wednesday, December 17, 2014

The Language of Ka-Ching!

In today's Vortex, Michael Voris urges that we withhold donations from parishes that are progressive and heretical in their direction.  I might add, from my own situation, that it may also be necessary to deny donations to errant dioceses.  I do not contribute to any diocesan collection - certainly not the Cardinal's Appeal.  Instead, reroute your donation dollars to those organizations that are truly Catholic and orthodox.

Do let your pastor/bishop, etc know precisely why they lack your money and that they can remedy the situation by a new-found dedication to the Church and fidelity to their Holy Orders.  Also please network with other like-minded Catholics in your locality and take actions in an organized fashion.  It's time we stand up and speak out.

Testem Benevolentiae Nostrae

In 1899, Pope Leo XIII wrote a letter to James Cardinal Gibbons, Archbishop of Baltimore.  It's entitled Testem Benevolentiae Nostrae.  In it we see that the current push to accommodate Church teaching to secular culture goes back at least 115 years.  In the fourth paragraph down, we see that Pope Leo addresses that quite directly - and rightly condemns it.

What do we see coming from the sin-nod?  What did we see in that pathetic homily, when Pope Francis scoffed at disciplines instituted by his predecessors?  Besides the blasphemy therein, we saw evidence of trying to "make the Church relevant to the culture".  No!  We must conform the culture to Jesus Christ and His Church.  We will be hated for it, but that is how Jesus Himself was treated.  We can expect no different treatment for ourselves.

Let's stop coddling the culture and get going.

Tuesday, December 16, 2014

Did The Pope Blaspheme During Yesterday's Homily?

When I wrote yesterday about the Pope's homily and mentioned the banana-peel quip, I completely overlooked the real horror of what he said.  I thank other bloggers, namely "That The Bones You Have Crushed May Thrill", for opening my eyes.  I said then that I failed to see how a banana peel would be linked to someone realizing they were a sinner; now I realize that the banana peel was used as a metaphor for temptation to sin.

Here's the original quote: "But Lord, throw a banana peel in front of them, so that they will take a good fall, and feel shame that they are sinners, and so encounter You, [and realize] that You are the Saviour. Many times a sin will make us feel shame, and make us encounter the Lord, Who pardons us, as the sick who were there and went to the Lord for healing."

Leaving aside the obvious lack of charity and respect that the pope exhibits towards faithful, devout, pious Catholics, let's consider some other fundamental points:
  • Our Lord may allow us to sin, because we have free will and He honors that which He gave to us.
  • Our Lord also allows us to sin, but He will never directly will us to sin for (this is important!) He cannot directly will evil to occur.  It is against His perfect, sinless nature to do so.
  • Our Lord will never tempt us to sin.  If a person deliberately tempts one to sin (throwing the proverbial banana peel) that action would itself be sin - probably mortal, for its deliberation and malice towards the one being tempted.
  • The pope alleges a final purpose in causing the banana-peel target to "encounter the Lord", but as he should well know, the ends never justifies an inherently immoral means.  To deliberately tempt someone to sin is always immoral.
  • In his supposed "prayer", the pope is asking God to commit sin Himself.  This is not prayer - it is nothing short of BLASPHEMY.
Catholic Encyclopedia gives an excellent treatment of blasphemy.  I think that what the Pope did yesterday is to engage in the heretical form of blasphemy.

I am reminded of a conversation that occurred between King St Louis IX of France and his holy mother, Queen Blanche.  She said to him that "I'd rather see you dead at my feet than guilty of one mortal sin".  Do we dare doubt that Our Lord's abhorrence of sin is less than Blanche's?

I am stunned.  This isn't a mere gaffe.  I said yesterday that I think this homily is part of a campaign to get us to accept, or at least be indifferent to, the reception of Holy Communion by those living in mortal sin.  But now I realize that he is presenting a distorted image of God Himself.  But come to think of it, he is the Vicar of Christ who has been doing that for some time: the clown noses, the beach balls on the altars, the discarding of papal traditions.  I never dreamed it would come to this, but now he's painting a horrible picture of God Himself - at least he did so yesterday. I pray we don't see future episodes from the Vicar of Christ.

Let's double down on our Rosaries (I hope that doesn't sound too pelagian) for our poor Mother Church needs them.

Monday, December 15, 2014

From The Maturation Department - Prior Eucharistic Disciplines Were "A Heavy Cross"

In his interview with La Nacion, the one in which he said he was blessed with a "healthy state of unawareness", he claimed that "I'm permanently making statements, giving homilies; that's teaching".  I concur with Pat Archibald at Creative Minority Report that he intends these words to be considered part of his personal magisterium.

With that in mind, I think we need to look seriously at the homily he gave today.  He stated that observances of law and discipline are signs of a "weak heart" (please note I corrected the spelling of "weak").  I'm appalled that as an example he used a prior discipline of a Eucharistic fast, going so far as to call it a "very heavy cross".  He credits Pope Pius XII for amending the discipline.  But..does that mean he thinks that the previous popes, from Pius XI on back, were just a bunch of Pharisaical meanies for instituting the fast in the first place?

After he complains about the inconvenience of the fast, he goes back into a tirade against "rigid" (or is that neo-pelagian?) folks.  He "confesses" that he asks the Lord to (I'm not making this up!) "throw a banana peal in front of them".  I see little repentance, to be frank, for wishing harm to people with whom he disagrees.  I fail to see how slipping on a banana peal is supposed to make people realize they're sinners; perhaps some good old-fashioned "rigid" proselytizing might do the trick.

But let's look at what's being slipped into the discussion and perhaps our thinking.  He's using as an example a discipline regarding the reception of Holy Communion.  Is he trying to instill questioning mindsets about other Eucharistic disciplines and even dogmas?  What happened six weeks ago?  The Sin-Nod!  What was put into the final relatio despite the vote of the attending bishops?  We see in the Italian translation of the preliminary questionnaire some discussion about distribution of Holy Communion to divorced/remarried Catholics who, by definition, are living in the mortal sin of adultery.

What happened today was no unintentional gaffe.  When he says he's "teaching" I believe him.  It's part of the brainwashing "maturation" process to lull us into accepting "pastoral solutions" to icky "rigid" doctrines.  That's why every word of his must be measured carefully.

Sunday, December 14, 2014

Mass Is Not A Proper Venue To Celebrate Ethnicity

At my church this past Friday, I attended an evening Mass that commemorated the Feast of Our Lady of Guadalupe.  Unfortunately that's not all that was celebrated.  The Mass seemed to be about being Mexican as much as anything else.  Celebrations of ethnic heritages might be good in and of themselves, but not during Mass.  The main harm in this case is that the message of Our Lady of Guadalupe was diluted by considerations that were, at best, ancillary.  Somehow I cannot think of Saint Juan Diego attending anything with mariachi music; in fact that genre of music was not contrived at the time.

Far better for these sorts of Masses to simply focus on the saint or event at hand rather than introduce ethnic celebrations within it.  Else the real spiritual meaning is lost in all the extraneous clutter.  Another feast day that suffers similar abuse is St. Patrick's Day.  How the feast day of the apostle to Ireland get sidelined by people dressing as leprechauns, dying food and hair green and even drunken carousing is  beyond me - and I'm of Irish descent.

At the Mass this past Friday, the congregation was devout.  Whether or not the mariachi lyrics were helpful I could not tell as I don't speak Spanish (it was overly loud, though).  What I hope we never see again is the de facto night-club performance that disgraced St. Peter's Basilica, with Pope Francis as the main celebrant.  Catholic Family News has a full analysis on that and I'd suggest you read it.  I've no doubt that St. Juan Diego spun in his grave as this performance unfolded.

No, Virginia. Fido And Felix Will Not Go To Heaven

Stories are scurrying around the internet claiming that the Pope says pets will go to heaven.  I'm glad to relate that he said no such thing.  Sentimental hopes to the contrary, animals are not created in God's image and likeness.  Eternal life has never been promised by Tradition or Scripture to them; their souls do not survive death.

Ladies and gentlemen, may we please leave this silly speculation in the trash can?  Let's concentrate on the salvation of people - human beings.  It is for these - us - that Jesus Christ became incarnate and died upon the Cross to save.

Saturday, December 13, 2014

Another Troubling Homily From The Pope

Two days ago in his daily homily, Pope Francis made some incredible statements that I think may actually be quite dangerous to those vulnerable to discouragement and depression.  From the Catholic News Agency we read, for example:
  • "If, in your relationship with the Lord, you do not feel that He loves you tenderly, you are missing something, you still have not understood what grace is, you have not yet received grace which is this closeness."
  • In history and also in our lives we are tempted to transform grace into a kind of a merchandise, perhaps saying to ourselves something like, ‘I have so much grace,’ or, ‘I have a clean soul, I am graced.’"
There's so much wrong with this I scarcely know where to begin.  But let's start with the word "feel".  There's a difference between "feel" and "believe".  Feeling has to do with emotions, and we know that they aren't entirely under our control at times, thanks to original sin.  Believing, on the other hand, is an act of the will.  The Church teaches that our souls are made in God's image and likeness owing to our intellects and wills, with no mention of emotions.  I'm no philosophical expert, but I believe emotions or feelings are a lower faculty of the human nature and they must be brought into control by acts of wills.  It might be nice from time to time to have favorable feelings regarding our relationship with God; I think these are called "consolations".  However, by no means are their presence or absence any accurate indication of grace in our lives or how close we truly are to God.

Recently it was revealed that Blessed Mother Teresa of Calcutta, after she had understood her call to found the Missionaries of Charity, never again experienced any of these consolations.  She confided this matter only to her spiritual directors.  It was a cross for her, true, but who in their right mind would say she was not "receiving grace"?

Earlier saints experienced similar things.  St. John of the Cross is said to have gone a while without such consolation.  He learned much from it and I believe that was the topic of his work, "Dark Night of the Soul".  His friend, St Teresa of Avila, was once thrown from her horse.  Being a "straight-shooting" talker, she complained to God "if this is how you treat your friends, no wonder you have so few of them."  In the Bible, particularly the Book of Hebrews, we read of the necessity of God's discipline as opposed to consolations.  The lack of feelings can itself be a grace that causes us to love and serve God for who He is, as opposed to the warm-fuzzies that we might enjoy.

The second "bullet" hearkens back to some cracks the Holy Father made last year about traditional Catholics being "pelagian".  I saw his definition of "pelagian" and I'll gladly bear that newly-defined label.  I go to confession every 2-3 weeks.  When I walk out of that confessional, I do say "I have a clean soul, I am graced."  I say that not because I "count merchandise" but because that is what Jesus Christ, through His Church, teaches.  Should I not acknowledge the graces that He procured for me by His Passion, Death and Resurrection?  It is the same thing when I attend Mass and receive Holy Communion.  With that I do say "I have so much grace".  Not to do so would render me an ingrate.

I said in the opening of this post that I believe those words from Thursday to be dangerous to those who are prone to discouragement and even depression.  That is because they suffer from maladies of the emotions.  Were they to rely on their fragile emotions as measures for God's grace and love, as suggested by the words of His Holiness, they would be setting themselves up for spiritual disaster.  Can you just imagine someone, after a life of sin, coming back to the Church and hearing that?  They need to rely on the facts of God's teachings.  If that person goes to Confession and, with all the effort he/she can muster renders a truly honest accounting of their sins, they need to rely on the truth of the priest's absolution that they are once again in a state of grace despite any roller-coaster to which their emotions may be subjecting them.

Our feelings are way too fickle to be any measure of God's love in our lives.  I thank Him for the Sacraments and Traditions of the Church for these are the transmission of God's grace in our lives.

Wednesday, December 10, 2014

Why Pax Christi Is A Pox

(HT - Pewsitter)

The Not-At-All Catholic Reporter interviewed Rosemarie Pace, director of Pax Christi of Metropolitan New York.  In the interview she let loose with her heretical notions of Who God is (halfway down the article).  When asked how her image of God has changed and why, she answers, "Another way I conceive of God is Spirit, more than Father/Mother or Son/Daughter...I used to think of God as more of a person to whom to turn with requests and praise and thanks..Praying to God as if God were a separate entity is a fallacy.."

As you were reading it, didn't "may the force be with you" sound in your mind?  She is basically saying that God is not a Person, but rather some pantheistic energy field (for lack of better term).

Let's go to the Baltimore Catechism to answer the question, "Who is God?"  Answer: "God is the Supreme Being, infintely perfect, who made all things and keeps them in existence".  We also know (from questions 25-30 of the Baltimore Catechism) that there are three distinct Persons in God - Father, Son and Holy Spirit.  I won't go into a whole lesson here.  Suffice it to say that Pace is flat out wrong when she opines that God is not a "separate entity" but rather some force or energy that has been mishmashed into creation.  Such is the warped spirituality of a Pax Christi official.

Further down, when asked what distresses her about contemporary Catholicism, she replies, "Unfortunately, the Catholic church is known worldwide for its positions on sexual matters like abortion, contraception, same-sex marriage, and the child abuse scandal. It's not known nearly as well for its far more important mission-related positions on war and peace, torture, nuclear weapons, death penalty, immigration, poverty, climate change, and so forth, what we know as Catholic social teaching."

In terms of the teachings of Jesus Christ as found in Church tradition, she has things precisely ass-backwards.  She dares to insinuate that the progressive talking points are "far more important mission-related positions" than is opposition to the slaughter of millions of pre-born children or the abuse of our procreative powers.  Her priorities - and those of Pax Christi - are completely backwards if not antithetical to true Christian charity.

Now go back to the beginning of the article, when she is asked about challenges facing Pax Christi, she replies (in part), "Because we're Catholic, there are those who have a preconceived notion about us. They may expect us to be focused on issues that are too conservative.."


Eeeek.  The horror.  To be considered "too conservative".  Well, I'd like Ms. Pace to rest assured that most thinking individuals don't believe that Pax Christi is conservative to any degree.  Considering the interview, especially the points I outlined above, some of us doubt its claim to be Catholic.

Tuesday, December 9, 2014

Looks Like All Hell Will Break Loose At The Next Synod

About 2-3 weeks ago, I put up a post in which Cardinal Burke publicly asked the Holy Father not to allow long-settled matters such as the sinfulness of homosexuality and remarriage of divorced people to be fodder of pointless debates.  Debates about these matters are pointless for Our Lord has made known His mind about these quite unmistakably throughout the years.  Cardinal Burke also suggested that we all petition the Holy Father along these lines.  Sadly wise words have fallen on deaf ears.

Sandro Magister of advised that the preliminary questionnaire for the October 2015 synod was released; for now it's only in Italian.  The questions within it give clear indication that those matters will indeed be on the table for the October synod.

In an interview given to La Nacion yesterday, the Holy Father expressed some unfortunate sentiments regarding Holy Communion for those living in adultery - sentiments that bode ill for the October synod.  I quote one below for commentary.  "In the case of divorcees who have remarried, we posed the question, what do we do with them? What door can we allow them to open? This was a pastoral concern: will we allow them to go to Communion? Communion alone is no solution.  The solution is integration. They have not been excommunicated, true. But they cannot be godfathers to any child being baptised, mass readings are not for divorcees, they cannot give Communion, they cannot teach Sunday school, there are about seven things that they cannot do, I have the list over there. Come on! If I disclose any of this it will seem that they have been excommunicated in fact. Thus, let us open the doors a bit more.

"What doors can we allow them to open?"  Answer - the door to the confessional, with a proper desire to quit the sinful relationship as befits authentic repentance.  Divorcees who have remarried without a declaration of nullity of their first marriages are by definition living in a state of adultery.  That is mortal sin, a direct violation of the Sixth Commandment.  For their own good they are prohibited from Holy Communion and from all prominent places of service to the Church.

What I stated in the paragraph preceding this is nothing more than Church teaching for these past hundreds of years.  Once upon a time every child who attended Catholic school was well-versed in these matters.  So why, oh why, are the perennial teachings of Holy Mother Church allowed to be debated, doubted and questioned by the very prelates who are tasked by Our Lord with their protection and promulgation?

As I said, I believe all hell will break loose at the synod.  I don't mean "hell" in terms of strenuous argument but in terms of spiritually deadly heresies being insinuated into the proceedings by those from the highest offices of the Vatican.  If that's the case, we'd better pray that more like Cardinals Burke and Pell will raise their voices and, if necessary, pound their fists on tables in defense of the truth.