"I find your lack of faith disturbing."
Monday, June 17, 2013
Sunday, June 16, 2013
I think the Holy Father has a remarkable knack for being forthright in identifying the problems in the Church. However, it seems that he has a difficult time targeting where the problems are most obvious.
For example, we recently spoke about his frustration with Church "triumphalism."
More recently, in some well-publicized comments, he expressed worry about Pelagianism. I'm linking to the Rorate take on the story because it gives the full text, rather than because I have agreement with the commenters there.
Here is the relevant section:
I share with you two concerns. One is the Pelagian current that there is in the Church at this moment. There are some restorationist groups. I know some, it fell upon me to receive them in Buenos Aires. And one feels as if one goes back 60 years! Before the Council... One feels in 1940... An anecdote, just to illustrate this, it is not to laugh at it, I took it with respect, but it concerns me; when I was elected, I received a letter from one of these groups, and they said: "Your Holiness, we offer you this spiritual treasure: 3,525 rosaries." Why don't they say, 'we pray for you, we ask...', but this thing of counting... And these groups return to practices and to disciplines that I lived through - not you, because you are not old - to disciplines, to things that in that moment took place, but not now, they do not exist today...
Let's be honest with ourselves. Pelagianism is probably the most rampant heresy in the Church. It's where people get this whole idea that just being a "nice person" will get someone into heaven. Granted, Pelagius would have taken a far more rigorous view than than, but the underlying principle remains the same. So the Holy Father's point is well-taken.
Worrying about this as a trend among "traditionalists" or "restorationists" or whatever you want to call them is weird, though. Most folks who fit this label are probably the furthest thing from Pelagian that you can imagine, hence their constant harping on the loss of the Faith among Catholics, the tendency to ignore/disregard the Magisterium, or the lack of prayers for the grace of conversion to those who need it. For example, why worry about, say, whether or not the Fatima consecration was done properly if grace is a superfluity?
Where do we see Pelagianism most operative? How about liberation theologians, who are so busy building base communities and such that the preaching of the Faith is a secondary item? How about the leaders of the ecumenicool movement who preach a unity of good works but not a unity of Faith or alliegiance to the Truth?
Pope Francis's second concern was expressed as follows:
The second [concern] is for a Gnostic current. Those Pantheisms... Both are elite currents, but this one is of a more educated elite... I heard of a superior general that prompted the sisters of her congregation to not pray in the morning, but to spiritually bathe in the cosmos, things like that... They concern me because they ignore the incarnation! And the Son of God became our flesh, the Word was made flesh, and in Latin America we have flesh abundantly [de tirar al techo]! What happens to the poor, their pains, this is our flesh...
Sure, it's the hippies that are part of this, but this is hardly a news flash. Where is the Gnostic element the strongest? I'd suggest that this is a glaring feature of the charismatic movement, where the focus on and desire for extraordinary manifestations of the Holy Spirit lead people to proclaim belief in personal revelations and mystic knowledge of things like syncretism, the benefits of liturgical horrors, and the rejection of obedience.
Anyways, I don't expect the Pope to know everything, but to single out "restorationists" and hippies seems wrong in the former case and ignoring the 800 pound gorilla in the latter.
Wednesday, June 12, 2013
Go right ahead. There's a right to privacy for that.
By all means. There's a right to privacy for that.
Keeping the IRS from leaking your tax returns or the NSA from data-mining your phone and internet records?
Absolutely not. There's no right to privacy for that.
Is this pretty much the sum of things?
Tuesday, June 11, 2013
The latest Reformed group to run off the cliff is the Evangelical Lutheran Church in American (ECLA).
They have now promoted their first homosexual bishop.
A North Hollywood theology professor ordained just two years ago after the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America dropped its ban on same-sex ministers was elected Friday as the church's first openly gay bishop.
The Rev. R. Guy Erwin won a six-year term to the Southwest California Synod, which encompasses the greater Los Angeles area, according to church officials.
The historic vote came Friday during a three-day assembly of the synod held in Woodland Hills.
Erwin's election marks a welcome turning point for the congregation's gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgendered members, said Emily Eastwood, executive director of Reconciling Works, an arm of the church that worked for decades to lift the ban on gay and lesbian clergy.
I wonder if the Missouri Synod folks will offer a condemnation. I haven't seen one yet, but I'd imagine something would be forthcoming.
On top of that, how do you think Martin Luther would react to this? This makes for one more example of my confusion over Reformed folks. Are there any Lutherans left who believe what Luther believed? Ditto for Calvinists and Calvin. Maybe it's just that there aren't any around here.
Monday, June 10, 2013
Yeah, probably not the image you came up with when you read the subject line. After all, while we've always thought of Queen Liz as a genocidal whore, we've never really thought of her as a dude.
Steve Berry has a book out this week called The King's Deception that is based on a real-life theory that Liz was a Shanghai Surprise. You can check out the details at the Daily Mail.
Basically, it comes down to a young Liz dying whilst in the custody of Thomas Parry and Kate Ashley. Knowing the Henry would kill them both for allowing this happen, they substituted a boy in her place, and the King was never the wiser for it. If you're looking for famous people who bought into this idea, there's Bram Stoker for one.
This would be so freaking awesome, if true. In fact, even though the evidence is thin, I'm going to believe it anyway just because it's so great. Sort of like believing in the Loch Ness Monster. Instead of Cate Blanchett or Helen Mirren, maybe they can get Hugh Grant to play him in the next movie.
However, if they ever do exhume the remains and find out that she was pulling a Crying Game, I might have to re-post this story every month or so just to re-live the hilarity of it all.
Monday, June 3, 2013
We asked a couple of questions about this earlier. Just to show we aren't crazy, I figured it would be good to note that others aren't letting the point drop. Matt Abbot continues to push the issue even as the mainstream media ignores it.
In ignoring this story, can we maybe assume that uncovering the truth in all this is a lower priority than what is often portrayed?
Sunday, June 2, 2013
Archbishop Tomasi addressed the UN Human Rights Council in an effort to draw attention to the persecution of Christians around the world. Here's the Zenit headline:
Greater Awareness Needed of Christian Persecution
With all respect to His Excellency, what is needed more is an awareness on the part of the Church, both laity and hierarchy, that nobody gives a crap. Especially at the UN. Holy smokes, how could anybody think the UN is going to be doing the Church any favors?
What Catholics need to realize is that we're basically on our own. When people hear about our brethren being murdered, they write books and make YouTube videos about how Christian persecution is a lie. Then they go cash their paycheck from an allegedly Catholic university.
That being said, these kinds of appeals are just a waste of time.
Friday, May 31, 2013
Pope Francis recently gave a homily in which he decried "triumphalism" in the Church. Per Zenit:
“Today, we risk succumbing to the temptation of a Christianity without a cross. And there is another temptation: that of a Christianity with the cross but without Jesus,” Pope Francis said. This, he continued, was the “temptation of triumphalism. We want triumph now, without going to the cross, a worldly triumph, a reasonable triumph."
The Holy Father concluded his homily speaking on the danger of triumphalism in the Church and of Christians, saying that a “triumphalist Church is a halfway Church.”
“A Church content with being “well organized and with [...] everything lovely and efficient”, but which denied the martyrs would be a Church which thought only of triumphs and successes; which did not have Jesus’ rule of triumph through failure. Human failure, the failure of the cross. And this is a temptation to us all.”
Here's the wild thing about this kind of statement, which isn't really all that uncommon these days. There is no more triumphalistic spirit than that which animates the defender's of Vatican II's alleged successes. It is impregnable to all assaults by reason, facts, etc. Even popes are infected by it. Despite Pope Benedict's attempts at realism towards the end of his pontificate, it's all over the place in other writings of his and is replete in what we have from Pope Paul and Blessed John Paul II.
Yet it's never recognized as such. In fact, any commentary that the Council was less than a 100% rousing success is typically met with accusations of infidelity to the Church or outright mockery.
Weird how that works.
Thursday, May 30, 2013
Fr. Andrew Greeley has passed away.
Let's ignore his body of work and instead ask a question that has been ignored in every report I've seen regarding his death. Fr. Greeley was the first guy who used the term "Lavender Mafia." He was trumpeting the problems of the abuse scandal and cover-ups way before things blew up in Boston. He insinuated and outright claimed that he had evidence related to the Lavender Mafia's activities in Chicago. Given his high-profile status, connections in the community, and "inside baseball" position during Cardinal Bernardin's tenure, it's more than plausible that he was being serious.
Now that he's dead, I'm wondering if there will be any ripple effects from this. Would Fr. Greeley have made arrangements for whatever evidence he might have possessed to come to light?
Not sure, but his passing makes for an interesting situation.
I sort of hinted at it in an earlier post, but it's just now come clearly to mind with some of the comments being made by Pope Francis lately.
It is a central tenet of Catholic distributists that one of the major problems with capitalism is that it allows freer reign for the impulses wrought by original sin. The world, the flesh, the devil. That sort of stuff. This leads to an exploitation of the weak by the strong, etc.
What seems to be consistently, though admittedly not always, neglected in the distributist analysis is the effects of original sin on the poor. For example, most distributist treatises inevitably have a section/chapter mocking the notion that large numbers of the poor exist in such a state by choice. As I often concede, my anecdotes are not data, but I cannot but look around and immediately notice that there are significant numbers who make just such a choice. Moreover, what does it mean to essentially pass over and dismiss this notion by declaring it to be unreasonable?
Is it weird to think that some people would rather be poor(er) and not work than work and be just as well off or better off? Sure it's weird. Sin does weird things to people and makes them do dumb stuff. However, there's a reason that Sloth is on the list of the Seven Deadly Sins. Distributists seem to ignore this and focus on the condemnation of unbridled and unethical capitalist conduct.
Now understand that I'm not saying that those latter criticisms are illegitimate. I'm saying that they are incomplete. Materialism and the addiction to worldliness infects everybody, including the poor. Perhaps, I dare say, even moreso with the poor since our current society feeds their envy right along with all the other sins shared in common with capitalism.
I ask again, how would anyone impose a just wage these days, knowing the measure of it that would be turned into bread and circuses?
This doesn't destroy distributist arguments or theories. It just makes me wonder about how you get around this problem since most of the solutions seem to be rather one-sided. Original sin is universal. We aren't going to see another Immaculate Conception. The culture feeds the fomes of sin in rich and poor alike. I've seen lots of proposals for how to deal with this at the higher levels. What do we do about the 99%?
Wednesday, May 29, 2013
I'm throwing this one out for our regular reader and commenter Mark of the Vineyard.
Cardinal Policarpo has resigned, and the Holy Father has accepted said resignation. Here was a guy who basically sat on the sidelines while abortion was legalized in Portugal and who made scandalous comments about the dogma of Holy Orders being reserved to men (which led to a half-hearted retraction).
Bishop Manuel Jose Macario do Nascimento Clemente (hell of a name there) has been appointed as his successor. Let's pray for him that the dogmas of the Faith will always be preserved under his care of the land of Fatima.
Sunday, May 26, 2013
Have looked something like this:
Needless to say, I've been exhausted and doing a great impression of Mr. Freeman here in my day-to-day stuff.
I apologize for the lack of updates. We will hopefully resume our regular posting schedule over the course of the next week.
Monday, May 13, 2013
Just so everybody realizes this, the main attack against parenthood in this country is coming from prospective parents. Ignore for a moment the millions of children who are being murdered by abortionists. That's not so much an attack on parenthood as it is mass murder.
I'm talking about the very concept of parenthood itself.
This is taking the shape of parents essentially looking at their kids as life-sized dollies for them to play with. When the kids get to be more than that, they are nightmarish monsters.
Consider this entry from Creative Minority Report. It discussed the trend of sex-selective IVF procedures. Prospective parents are shelling out major cash to pull this off. Reflect on these words of a proud mom:
My husband and I stared at our daughter for that first year. She was worth every cent. Better than a new car, or a kitchen reno.
Well, hell, it's good to know that she's got that going for her! She was worth every penny! Imagine if she'd been twins!
Oh yeah. Twins. You know what they say about twins, right?
Think of the worst thing you can imagine. That’s what it was like.
Twins were always my worst nightmare.
Isn't that lovely? Yet this is what "parents" are coming to these days. I hear this kind of crap all the time. In many ways, it's the natural outgrowth of the snark that is directed at every family with more than two kids. Kids are fun. To a point. Once the parents aren't having fun, the kids catch the brunt of it, either being chastised into paralysis or pawned off on the most convenient day care/babysitter/relative for 6 days a week.
Ms. Hatten, who wrote the latter article, comments on the selfishness of our culture. It really is horrific. Children are a menace now.
Return quickly, Lord. Please.
Sunday, May 12, 2013
Have you ever noticed how parishes act for a kid's First Communion?
The kids have to dress up. The girls wear veils. I've never seen any of them receive in the hand because it's the only time of the year when the parish breaks out kneelers or makes use of their altar rail (assuming it has one). You even have special decorations and maybe even a reception for everyone when Mass is over. Of course, the kids have to go to confession, but that's sort of part of the general procedure here in the West anyway.
For one shining time in the child's life, they treat the Mass as what it is. It's all downhill from there. Sure, the measure of time it takes for the decay to set in varies. The clothes change is typically immediate. It's back to jeans and t-shirts (if their parents are particularly pious; otherwise, it might be way worse). A mantilla is never seen again.
The Eucharist is eventually received as a matter of course, rather than as a matter of salvation. There are teenagers getting ready for Confirmation who haven't been to confession since their First Communion. All reverence decomposes until nobody can really recall why they made such a big deal of it the first time around anyway.
Until it's time for their kids.
Then they think of how cute Dick and Jane will look in their nice clothes and how sweet the pictures will be when they kneel for, what is now, the afterthought of the Body, Blood, Soul, and Divinity of God Himself.
I'm not saying this is the case for everyone, but seeing kids I know will continue in the their reverence for the Eucharist reminded me of how the vast majority do not and who come to Mass only interested in the fact that they are now one week closer to being old enough to never return again.
Like everything else with the Church, we've turned so much into a production that the reason for everything has been forgotten. The shallow experience of snapping some pictures for the album has replaced the awe surrounding the encounter with Christ in the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass. And the people are content.
What a revolting development.
Thursday, May 9, 2013
Do you know who he is? If not, please make the effort to learn. He was a great, great man, and we should all be ashamed of how he was ultimately treated by the Church after all he suffered on Her behalf.
There is a book out that contains much of his correspondence. Zenit has an interview with the author. It is worthwhile, but I am reproducing here the content that describes His Eminence himself. Please read the entire interview. If I'm able to get around to reading the book, I'll try to post a review here.
For five decades and with great faith and courage, Cardinal József Mindszenty fought at great personal cost for religious freedom in his native Hungary, offering a witness to the kind of heroism that might be needed in today’s increasingly tyrannical secularist societies.
During the Second World War, the Church of Hungary's “Prince-Primate” was imprisoned by the Nazis and then tortured by the country’s Communist regime. In 1949, he received a life sentence for his opposition to Marxist rule and persecution. Freed in 1956 following the Hungarian Revolution, he was granted political asylum in the United States embassy in Budapest, where he would spend the next 15 years confined to the embassy compound.
He regained freedom in 1971, lived in exile in Vienna, and died in 1975 at the age of 83. Documentation pertaining to his cause for beatification was sent to Rome in 1996.
During those years in which he was holed up as an embassy “guest” in the Hungarian capital, he was viewed with a mixture of respect and resentment in diplomatic circles, with some begrudging the unwanted burden he presented to US officials.
But he never let up campaigning for freedom and human rights. In his “semi-captivity," he wrote a large number of letters and messages, sent through diplomatic channels, to four US presidents and their secretaries of state. The missives, now documented in a new book called “Do Note Forget This Small Honest Nation," contained political advice on how to defend Hungary and Eastern Europe from Soviet Bolshevism. In particular, he consistently advocated for human rights and expressed his concern for the fate of thousands being persecuted by the Kadar regime that ruled Hungary after 1956.
Cardinal Mindszenty, please pray for us.
Wednesday, May 8, 2013
In an address to the International Union of Superiors General (women's religious superiors), Pope Francis dropped the following comment. Per Zenit:
Your vocation is an essential charism for the journey of the Church, and it is not possible that a consecrated woman and a consecrated man not “feel” along with the Church. A “feeling” along with the Church which was generated in us in our Baptism; a “feeling” with the Church which finds its filial expression in fidelity to the Magisterium, in communion with the pastors and the Successor of Peter, Bishop of Rome, the visible sign of unity. For every Christian, the proclamation and witnessing of the Gospel are never an isolated act. This is important. For every Christian the proclamation and witnessing of the Gospel are never an isolated or group act, and no evangelizers acts, as Paul VI reminded very well, "on the strength of a personal inspiration, but in union with the mission of the Church and in her name” (Apostolic Exhortation Evangelii nuntiandi, 80). And Paul VI continued: It is an absurd dichotomy to think of living with Jesus without the Church, of following Jesus outside of the Church, of loving Jesus without loving the Church (cf. Ibid., 16). Feel the responsibility you have to take care of the formation of your Institutes in the healthy doctrine of the Church, in love of the Church and in the ecclesial spirit.
This is the second time that the Holy Father has made such a comment. So far, we haven't seen any Dominus Iesus-ish blowback, probably because it is in the best interests of secularists to continue to promote an image of Pope Francis that is at variance with his predecessor (and Catholicism in general).
I wonder what the LCWR types thought about this. Probably not warm and fuzzy thoughts. After all, it's tough to move "beyond Jesus" what with popes and such constantly reminding people that there's no such thing. From the looks of things, they are looking for a protector in the Curia, and Cardinal João Braz de Aviz is stepping up to the plate.
His Eminence replaced Cardinal Franc Rode, who was good at his job. Cardinal Braz de Aviz seems unsure of what his job is, since he's spent most recent days (Per Rorate) griping about the LCWR investigation and wanting to know why he was "left out of the loop." It's pretty obvious that the CDF stepped in to do what His Eminence should have been doing. Needless to say, the CDF version of events is a bit different.
Opting to give up his right to remain silent, Cardinal Braz de Aviz continues to push the point.
The great part is that he talks about how much Pope Francis trusts all the Curial folks and yet complains about how he was excluded. It's a weird interview at the preceding link. One moment, he talks about how one can't have Christ without the Church, mirroring Pope Francis's own language. The next moment, everything becomes focused on the need for "dialogue" and "clarification." Very weird.
If anything, this shows us that the Curia is still a mess. We haven't seen any big moves to date, but one must assume they are being considered and/or planned. When things get to this point:
Everybody knows that a clean-up is in order. The Curia situation makes Hoarders look like a shot out of Southern Living magazine.
Tuesday, May 7, 2013
If you've been tuned in to the news the last couple of days, chances are that you've heard about how the whole narrative that was promoted by the Obama administration regarding the Benghazi murders was completely fabricated.
No freaking way. Nobody saw that coming, right?
Our own nation has a tremendous track record of events where the government or powerful private interests have lied to people or engaged in conspiracies to further an often less-than-virtuous agenda. That's just our nation; it doesn't even bring into account the history of the rest of the world.
What amazes me is how, in the face of how ubiquitous this phenomenon is, people are so unwilling to consider the possibilities of such events. Just taking the Benghazi thing as an example. If the President's cohorts would lie about this, why wouldn't they lie about other things? Notice that I'm not taking the step of implicating the President as a party in this.
I use the Church as an example as well. We know how widespread the abuse scandal was. Is it so difficult to imagine that there was a group of prelates actively involved in shepherding those responsible? J. Edgar Hoover denied the existence of the Mafia. The average Catholic denies the existence of the Lavender Mafia. Both in the face of significant evidence to the contrary.
To be clear, this isn't about people who are presented with this kind of information and then simply disagree with the conclusion. This is about folks who listen to the info and then immediately label the presenter as a lunatic for no other reason than "Well, I just can't believe that" or "The (insert government/private interest) would never do such a thing." For an example of this latter scenario, consider anyone voicing fears that our current government is hostile to religious interests and actively seeking to undermine Christianity, specifically Catholicism. I am amazed at how these fears are met with such incredulity.
There are two kinds of crazy: thinking everything is a conspiracy and thinking nothing is a conspiracy. I suggest that the vast majority of our electorate have slouched into the second camp.
Sunday, May 5, 2013
Specifically, the First Reading from Acts 15:
Some who had come down from Judea were instructing the brothers, “Unless you are circumcised according to the Mosaic practice, you cannot be saved.” Because there arose no little dissension and debate by Paul and Barnabas with them, it was decided that Paul, Barnabas, and some of the others should go up to Jerusalem to the apostles and elders about this question.
The apostles and elders, in agreement with the whole church, decided to choose representatives and to send them to Antioch with Paul and Barnabas. The ones chosen were Judas, who was called Barsabbas, and Silas, leaders among the brothers. This is the letter delivered by them:
The apostles and the elders, your brothers, to the brothers in Antioch, Syria, and Cilicia of Gentile origin: greetings. Since we have heard that some of our number who went out without any mandate from us have upset you with their teachings and disturbed your peace of mind, we have with one accord decided to choose representatives and to send them to you along with our beloved Barnabas and Paul, who have dedicated their lives to the name of our Lord Jesus Christ. So we are sending Judas and Silas who will also convey this same message by word of mouth:
First, why is the Council of Jerusalem not mentioned here? Is it included in the Readings on some other day? Kind of an important thing to leave out, I think.
Second, notice what the message says that set apart the Judaizers from the legitimate missionaries. It's the apostolic mandate. The Judaizers were not sent forth by the authority of the Apostles. This dovetails well with St. Paul's comment in Romans:
How then shall they call on him, in whom they have not believed? Or how shall they believe him, of whom they have not heard? And how shall they hear, without a preacher? And how shall they preach unless they be sent, as it is written: How beautiful are the feet of them that preach the gospel of peace, of them that bring glad tidings of good things!
It's not standard operating procedure for the Holy Spirit to select a random guy who then consecrates himself as The Most Reverend Prophet, Bishop J. Randall WooHoo of the First Mt. Nebo United Nazarene Church of the Living God in Christ.
People are sent forth by ones in authority. They receive that authority by the laying on of hands from one of those with authority (1 Timothy 4:14). Those latter having received it from someone else, eventually leading back to Our Blessed Lord.
This is a concept foreign to many Protestants, of course, in that the never-ending multiplication of sects is often spurred by the random individual taking it upon himself to act as God's messenger without the aforementioned mandate.
Catholics have a serious problem with this as well. This is often seen in the various parish committees wherein laity take it upon themselves to play make-believe with the Church's liturgy and doctrines. Being assigned to a position of "lay leadership" suddenly makes one an authority above the Church. This was a huge problem where my wife attended RCIA, where the liturgy was changed like a suit of cheap clothes and the whole catechetics/RCIA program was run by heretics.
Nothing new under the sun, though. If the Apostles had to deal with it, makes sense that we would too.
Friday, May 3, 2013
Well, we know it's legal, so I guess one out of three ain't bad.
Take note of this recent video by Live Action in which Planned Parenthood personnel admit that babies born alive are allowed to die.
These are the people that the President recently invoked a divine blessing upon.
If you want to know which deity the President and Planned Parenthood serve, we have a picture.
Obama and Planned Parenthood: Turning Back the Clock to 1300 BC since 1973,
Tuesday, April 30, 2013
Fr. Zuhlsdorf is very upset. As I read his posts on these topics, all I could envision was the above image.
First, you had some whackjob old lady decide to play make-believe priestess. I'm sure that there's something in Vatican II that gave her the right to do this, right? Anyways, she now claims to be a priest. This all took place at St. Andrew's United Church of Christ church in Louisville, which really set Fr. Zuhlsdorf's outrage into overdrive since it was Protestants enabling this sacrilege.
In a related story that also involves a fake priest (or bishop in this case), Gene Robinson, homosexual Episcopalian "bishop," pretty much blasted anyone who is a faithful Catholic by claiming they are out of step with the Catholic "majority" (ie- those embracing homosexual unions, contraception, abortion, etc). He also chastised any bishop who would consider denying the Eucharist to those Catholics who are part of this majority. Fr. Zuhlsdorf is again beside himself that a Protestant would lecture Catholics on what they should/should not believe.
Here are his comments from the first story. He refers to them again in the second entry.
Antics like this should have consequences for ecumenical dialogue.
The women’s ordination thing is silliness. It is a circus.
A Protestant church hosted the circus. They gave the Catholic Church the finger.
There should be consequences.
Like what? Not invite them back for Assisi: The Next Generation?
We either take ecumenism seriously or we don’t. If we do – and I believe we must – we have to react strongly when ecumenical ideals are so grossly violated by Protestants who invite or permit these “women priest” ceremonies in their churches.
Newsflash, Father. Regardless of what they say, nobody on the other side of the aisle really takes ecumenism seriously. Given that the Church's stance on ecumenism has basically been one of one surrender after another over the last few decades, I'm not sure if we take it seriously either. Sure, we've held fast on some things, but let's be real, whether it's communion under both kinds or the Ravenna document or hearing cardinals talk about what an awesome guy Luther was, it's not like we've been holding the line.
The most sacred rites of the Catholic Church are Holy Mass and ordination to Holy Orders.
They effectively trampled rites that we Catholics hold as sacred.
These silly Catholic women-priest supporters are committing sacrilege in simulating Mass and Orders.
However, the Protestants who host them are assisting in a mockery of our Holy Mass and a mockery of our priesthood...
Umm, yeah. On a good day, the intellectually honest Protestant would claim the Mass and the priesthood are a sideshow. On a bad day, they would say the concepts are blasphemous. Remind me again why they would give a crap what we think here.
How dare PROTESTANTS decide what a Catholic Mass is?...
Again, why should they care?
Bishops have to take action when offensive, anti-Catholic things like this take place.
Upon hearing the news that this ceremony is going to take place (or has taken place), the local Catholic bishop must call the pastor of that Protestant parish and say, “I’m the Catholic Bishop. Do not allow this sacrilege to be committed in your church. You wouldn’t do this for a group of dissident Jews wanting to ordain rabbis, but we are Catholics so you don’t care what offense you give us. Until an apology is issued, don’t look for us to dialogue with you again.”
Holy smokes. Has Fr. Z lost his mind? Yeah, I'm sure that Protestants are shaking in their freaking boots over the possibility that Catholics might not want to dialogue anymore.
Newsflash, Father. They aren't interested in dialogue. They want our conversion, whether as individuals to their religion or as a collective to their way of thinking. Fake ordinations will move both of these agendas forward.
Then that Catholic bishop should call the head of the denomination and convey the same message.
And just who would that be? Sure, you might have somebody in the Anglican Communion that at least puts on the show of having a hierarchy but this is an utterly irrelevant statement in the bulk of scenarios involving Protestants. Even if it was some variation of Anglicanism, can you imagine the Pope calling up the current Archlayman of Canterbury or a guy like Rowan and making this kind of comment? Even if he was upset by what happened, just what is he going to do about it? Issue a strongly worded letter threatening more strongly worded letters if it happens again?
Then that Catholic Bishop should send an informative note to the USCCB’s ecumenical office and to the CDF and to the Pontifical Council for Promoting Christian Unity to let them know the facts of the sacrileges that took place and who helped them.
Yeah, I'm sure the USCCB will get right on that. Archbishop Mueller and Cardinal Koch as well. Because guys at the highest levels of the Curia have nothing better to do than be irate at the United Church of Christ in Kentucky for faking a woman's ordination.
Then that Catholic bishop should call the press and give them his view about the offense the Protestants gave and the damage they inflicted on ecumenical dialogue.
What good would this do? Give the press a chance to run another story about the poor-downtrodden heretic women who want nothing more than to subvert God's Church with their blasphemous sacrilege?
Here's the deal, in recap. Ecumenical relations with Protestant denominations are absurd. They don't give a crap. We do nothing but make concessions without success. The only things that work are items like Anglicanorum Coetibus, which happened in spite of ecumenism. Conversion is the ticket. Everything else is just retreat. Dialogue is meaningless. Teaching is valuable. They don't think these things are sacred so there isn't any reason for them to object.
There is absolutely nothing that can be done in the way of "consequences" that will have any real-world meaning whatsoever. Everybody should just embrace the reality here and deal with it.
Monday, April 29, 2013
First, let's consider a hypothetical scenario. A Catholic who is struggling with same-sex attraction and striving to live chastely and according to Church teaching is more likely to be persecuted by:
A. Society at-large and other homosexuals for being an "Uncle Tom" of sorts and not letting his/her sexual urges rule their lives.
B. Other Catholics.
Which of the options presented would be regarded as bigots and which would be cast as liberators of the struggling homosexual for engaging in persecutory behavior?
Catholics, far from being bigoted with regards to homosexuals, seem to be taking the far less charitable route of deciding that sexually active homosexuals are perfectly ok. This, of course, not only demonstrates a profound lack of kindness on the part of the Catholic, as they clearly have little regard for the homosexual's soul.
Not only that, though, such an attitude makes a mockery of the above-mentioned chaste homosexual who wants to live as God would have them. When Catholics trumpet the need for same-sex unions (of whatever stripe) as some kind of remedy for societal prejudices, I wonder if they consider that what they are actually promoting is a nice mechanism for facilitating mortal sin. Or if they consider how this might affect homosexuals who are engaged in this great struggle.
Anyways, in thinking about all this, I'd like to provide a couple of examples:
This is Oscar Wilde. If you haven't read any of his work, I highly recommend doing so. He is one of the "classic" authors who is not overrated in the least. In addition to being a great writer, he was also a husband and father and homosexual.
And a death-bed convert to Catholicism. This is often ignored by those who exalt Wilde for his more libertine tendencies. But it's still there.
And then there's this guy:
This is, of course, Andy Warhol. What do folks think of when they hear his name? Campbell soup cans? Weird pictures of Elvis? As you go down the list, I'm betting his homosexuality gets mentioned way before his status as a Ruthenian Catholic and almost daily Mass attendee.
Or the fact that he at least claimed to be a virgin even up to a few years before his death.
Not that this makes him perfect or anything. A good bit of Warhol's artwork was pretty pornographic. However, consider the environments that surrounded him. If we take his claim of virginity at face value, that's a pretty impressive feat considering all the sexual hijinks of the times in which he lived.
Why am I bringing these guys up? To demonstrate a couple of things.
In the case of Wilde, you had a promiscuous homosexual who squandered a good bit of his life on bad stuff. In a real-life Prodigal Son story, though, he found God's mercy in the end. I present this to illustrate (a) that homosexuals should be prayed for and should not be treated as some kind of "lost cause" or otherwise beyond the reach of grace and (b) Wilde's conversion is the best part of his life and the most forgotten.
For Warhol, you have a homosexual who, while engaging in numerous other sinful behaviors (as all people do) still remained (apparently) chaste and still found time to go to Mass every day and live out his faith in other ways. To hear many talk, this is an impossibility by today's standards. What does that say about the chaste Catholic with same-sex attraction? That they should just give up and yield to their sinful inclinations.
Who are the haters in all this? Those who appreciate the struggle with sin and pray for their brethren in the conflict? Or those who cheer the combatants on toward their destruction in the name of some temporal cheerfulness?
Thursday, April 25, 2013
These words were uttered by that conservative reactionary, Pope Francis.
And so the Church was a Mother, the Mother of more children, of many children. It became more and more of a Mother. A Mother who gives us the faith, a Mother who gives us an identity. But the Christian identity is not an identity card: Christian identity is belonging to the Church, because all of these belonged to the Church, the Mother Church. Because it is not possible to find Jesus outside the Church. The great Paul VI said: "Wanting to live with Jesus without the Church, following Jesus outside of the Church, loving Jesus without the Church is an absurd dichotomy." And the Mother Church that gives us Jesus gives us our identity that is not only a seal, it is a belonging. Identity means belonging. This belonging to the Church is beautiful.
What a jerk. Anyways, I though that maybe he would send a copy of this homily to the prelates in England who are content with having Catholic parents not impart their faith to their children, as was mentioned in a previous story.
There's also another nugget in the Pope's homily that I thought was pretty hilarious, but I admit that maybe I'm reading a little too much into it. Take a look at this part:
Some, people of Cyprus and Cyrene - not these, but others who had become Christians - went to Antioch and began to speak to the Greeks too. It was a further step. And this is how the Church moved forward. Whose was this initiative to speak to the Greeks? This was not clear to anyone but the Jews. But ... it was the Holy Spirit, the One who prompted them ever forward ... But some in Jerusalem, when they heard this, became 'nervous and sent Barnabas on an "apostolic visitation": perhaps, with a little sense of humor we could say that this was the theological beginning of the Doctrine of the Faith: this apostolic visit by Barnabas. He saw, and he saw that things were going well.
This strikes me as funny since it comes on the heels of the Pope's confirmation of the findings against the whackjob women's religious fringe (aka the LCWR). It might not have been intentional, but his decision to drop the term "apostolic visitation" with an oblique reference to the CDF just seemed a little too out of left field in the context of the story not to have had a deeper meaning.
Again, I'm probably just reading too much into it. It's still funny, though.
Tuesday, April 23, 2013
Church leaders have told the British government that members of the royal family who marry Catholics under recently passed legislation will not be obliged to bring up their children in the Catholic faith.
Lord Wallace of Tankerness, speaking on behalf of the government, said he had been assured personally by Msgr. Marcus Stock, general secretary of the Bishops' Conference of England and Wales, that the canonical requirement of Catholics to raise their children in the faith was not always binding.
"I have the specific consent of Msgr. Stock to say that he was speaking on behalf of Archbishop (Vincent) Nichols (of Westminster) as president of the Catholic Bishops' Conference of England and Wales and can inform the House that the view taken by the Catholic Church in England and Wales is that, in the instance of mixed marriages, the approach of the Catholic Church is pastoral," he said.
"It will always look to provide guidance that supports and strengthens the unity and indissolubility of the marriage," Lord Wallace said.
"In this context the Catholic Church expects Catholic spouses to sincerely undertake to do all that they can to raise children in the Catholic Church," he continued. "Where it has not been possible for the child of a mixed marriage to be brought up as a Catholic, the Catholic parent does not fall subject to the censure of canon law."
I'll start by saying that I assume that this communication actually occurred. It would be awfully bold to fabricate something like this and then announce it for the public record.
That being the case, what the hell? What the hell?
First, let's remember just who it is that we are talking about here. These aren't even real monarchs. They are fake monarchs who basically get lots of free stuff with pretty much zero accountability whatsoever.
Second, even if they were real monarchs, they are usurpers and thieves. Their whole sham regime arises from the fact that stuff was stolen from our ancestors in blood and faith, our brethren were murdered, and an empire was built from the bounty of all these sins.
Third, when did we start exempting anybody in this situation from Canon Law?
That Archbishop Nichols feels free enough to offer such a dispensation is an insult to all the English Catholics who had the misfortune of living under persecution.
I haven't heard the Queen, William, or Kate make any mention of returning any of the Church's property or offering any kind of reparations. Hell, at least Mussolini was willing to pay for what was stolen.
Of course, this doesn't even bring up the utter callousness of any child born under such circumstances. Making nice with the Usurper Clan apparently carries a bit more weight than the salvation of someone's soul these days.
What is the world coming to when a reigning archbishop declares that it is ok for a Catholic parent to neglect the religious upbringing of their child?
Monday, April 22, 2013
The Catholic Church is frequently criticized for owning priceless works of art and having churches that are full of splendor. The critics suggest that the Church sell all these things and give the money to the poor. This doesn't just come from famous people. It's brought up by Normal Joe Non-Catholic and even the average Catholic layman. It's one reason we had our recent post about why tiaras are important.
That being said, has anyone noticed what the average public building for our cities/states/nations look like? These were purchased with taxpayer money, so one would think that anybody would have the right to raise the appropriate outcry to have all these nice marble statues, gold inlaid columns, etc. stripped out and sold for the benefit of the needy.
I'm sure the typical response would be something about how the Church should be held to a higher standard. The problem with that argument is that many who would make it simultaneously claim that the State has the same role as the Church in caring for those who are less fortunate. So far, though, I can't say I've heard any call for less "pomp" in State affairs.
Somehow, Hollywood types reject the idea that violent movies should be curbed due to the potential negative effects on young people. Some claim that linking a violent entertainment culture with violent actions is "disrespectful."
Let somebody light a cigarette on camera, though, and all hell breaks loose. People are actually funding reports to track cigarette use in movies. Think of the poor people they could have fed with that money.
In a related story, the FCC is considering lightening up on its standards for sexually indecent material. I'm sure there's no connection between our sex-saturated culture and promiscuity or other dangerous habits among young people, so this should go great.