Saturday, April 30, 2011

My (Only) Thoughts About The Wedding

I figure I might as well throw this out there since this is apparently the most important story in the entire universe right now.

For right now, I'm going to ignore that these people are usurpers with no legitimate right to even play dress up and pretend to be royalty. Anyways...

Just consider. Billions of people tuned in to watch millions of dollars be spent on the wedding of a fake monarch. Not a real monarch. A fake one.

If this had been the marriage of anybody with any power at all, I would have given a crap. Since this is clearly not the case, I have no idea why such a crap is given, especially by billions of people.

The one good thing about this is that maybe if so many people will watch a fake monarch get married, maybe there is a chance that we can get real monarchies back some day.

Friday, April 29, 2011

Perhaps It's Time That ND End The Charade

At this point, the powers that be there really look like they are just presiding as hypocrites.

During the March 2011 meeting of the University of Notre Dame Faculty Senate, a resolution failed that would have offered the Senate’s affirmation of the University’s commitment to the dignity of the human person and the sanctity of human life. According to the minutes of that meeting, eight senators were in favor of the resolution and 22 were against it.

The resolution text placed the proposed faculty support in the broader context of the University of Notre Dame’s pro-life initiatives over the course of the past two years. The resolution mentioned how Notre Dame adopted its Institutional Statement Supporting the Choice for Life on April 8, 2010, and how Fr. Jenkins responded to a recommendation of the Task Force on Supporting the Choice for Life by creating the position of Coordinator for University Life Initiatives.

If anyone is curious, yes, Obama's role was mentioned, and for some, it seems to be of more significance than that of Jesus Christ.

Finally, one senator said that this resolution, if approved, would be perceived as a reprisal for the Senate’s 2009 endorsement of Father Jenkins’ invitation to President Obama, adding that he was opposed to the resolution for that reason.

What with Cardinal George's actions in Chicago, maybe Bishop Rhoades will finally pull the plug and make sure everyone understands that ND as an institution has pretty much abandoned any semblance of Catholicism.

Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Fr. Pfleger's Chickens Have Come Home To Roost

We mentioned a while back that this might be coming. It did. Thanks to our co-author Karl for breaking this story.

Citing what he called threats from the Rev. Michael Pfleger to leave the church, Cardinal Francis George has removed the outspoken priest from St. Sabina parish and has suspended his "sacramental faculties as a priest."

Now, it's one thing to remove a guy like Fr. Pfleger from his priestly duties. It's something else to see it go down like this. Check out Cardinal George's letter:

Pfleger had publicly feuded with the cardinal about possibly being reassigned to Leo High School, telling a radio show recently that he would look outside the Catholic church if offered no other choice.

"If that is truly your attitude, you have already left the Catholic Church and are therefore not able to pastor a Catholic parish," George wrote in a letter dated today.

"A Catholic priest's inner life is governed by his promises, motivated by faith and love, to live chastely as a celibate man and to obey his bishop," the cardinal continued. "Breaking either promise destroys his vocation and wounds the Church.

"Many love and admire you because of your dedication to your people," the cardinal wrote. "Now, however, I am asking you to take a few weeks to pray over your priestly commitments in order to come to mutual agreement on how you understand personally the obligations that make you a member of the Chicago presbyterate and of the Catholic Church.

"With this letter, your ministry as pastor of Saint Sabina Parish and your sacramental faculties as a priest of the Archdiocese are suspended."

The cardinal ended the letter by saying, "This conflict is not between you and me; it's between you and the Church that ordained you a priest, between you and the faith that introduced you to Christ and gives you the right to preach and pastor in his name. If you now formally leave the Catholic Church and her priesthood, it's your choice and no one else's. You are not a victim of anyone or anything other than your own statements."

Holy smokes. This is about that closest thing to Becket with bell, book, and candle that we're liable to see these days. I noticed that the Tribune buried the part of the letter where it's indicated that Fr. Pfleger basically lied about how this whole issue of re-assignment was brought up.

"As you know, this was an honest offer, not driven by pressure from any group but by a pastoral need in the Archdiocese," George wrote. "You promised to consider what was a proposal, not a demand, even as I urged you to accept it."

The cardinal says his private conversation with Pfleger "was misrepresented publicly as an attempt to 'remove' you from Saint Sabina's. You know that priests in the Archdiocese are 'removed' only because they have been found to have sexually abused a minor child or are guilty of financial malfeasance.

Fr. Pfleger's response to the transfer talk was to blame the NRA.

On the radio, Pfleger said conservative Catholics want to return St. Sabina, a mostly African-American parish, to the way it was before he got there nearly three decades ago and silence what they believe to be progressive messages from the pulpit.

For a couple of years, he said he has been the target of petitions and letter-writing campaigns by the NRA. Letters are often copied to the cardinal, Pfleger said.

"The NRA ... says I've been much too vocal about assault weapons and much too vocal about guns being registered and being accountable to gun owners," Pfleger said on the radio. "So all that combined and I guess the cardinal didn't have anything to do one morning and decided he wanted to get rid of me again."

How weird can you get?

Anyways, what's going to happen here is very significant. For a long time, the argument has been made that disciplining heretics and schismatics shouldn't be done because of the whole wheat/tares problem. Basically, by doing so, you run the risk of Catholics leaving the Church because of their attachment to these individuals and their whackjobbery. Of course, the counter-argument to this is that more damage is done by leaving these folks alone and letting them endanger so many souls with their heresy and schism, not to mention creating the impression that the Church might even be giving tacit approval to these false ideas by not acting to restrain them.

St. Sabina's is probably about to be a microcosm of how this issue plays out. I hope very much that the community there remembers that their allegiance is to Christ and His Church, not to some priest who attempted to proclaim disobedience to that same authority was a virtue.

Just Because This Image Deserves Publication

Sunday, April 24, 2011

Christos Anesti!

Saturday, April 23, 2011

He Descended Into Hell

To preach to the spirits in prison

Friday, April 22, 2011

Crucify Him!

Nothing drives home the meaning for the season quite like having to face our collective guilt for the death of Our Blessed Lord.

A couple of things from the readings tonight that I hadn't really thought of before:

1. If you release him, you are not a friend of Caesar.

Along with every bishop and priest who remains silent in the face of allegedly Catholic politicians who advocate for license to murder children.

2. We have no king but Caesar.

Along with every other Catholic who thinks that voting for a guy who was ok with denying emergency care to dying abortion survivors or that FOCA and its ilk are worthy ideas.

3. They also took his tunic, but the tunic was seamless,
woven in one piece from the top down.
So they said to one another,
“Let’s not tear it, but cast lots for it to see whose it will be, “
in order that the passage of Scripture might be fulfilled that says:
They divided my garments among them,
and for my vesture they cast lots.

The new High Priest's garment is left intact prior to His sacrifice. The old High Priest rent his own as a prelude to his sin.

4. But when they came to Jesus and

saw that he was already dead,
they did not break his legs,
but one soldier thrust his lance into his side,
and immediately blood and water flowed out.
An eyewitness has testified, and his testimony is true;
he knows that he is speaking the truth,
so that you also may come to believe.

There's a longstanding tradition that a major motivating factor for St. John's Gospel was the Docetist heresy. A big part of this heresy was the claim that Jesus had physical body. This segment here mentioning Longinus's piercing of Christ's side seems kind of weird in its insistence that it comes via an eyewitness. Perhaps this was to make it more persuasive to folks who might be doubting the Incarnation. Seems obvious, I guess, but I never really thought about it as specifically targeting this one group.

See you all again for Easter.

Most Merciful Jesus, whose very nature it is to have compassion on us and to forgive us, do not look upon our sins but upon our trust which we place in Your infinite goodness. Receive us all into the abode of Your Most Compassionate Heart, and never let us escape from It. We beg this of You by Your love which unites You to the Father and the Holy Spirit.

Eternal Father, turn Your merciful gaze upon all mankind and especially upon poor sinners, all enfolded in the Most Compassionate Heart of Jesus. For the sake of His sorrowful Passion show us Your mercy, that we may praise the omnipotence of Your mercy for ever and ever. Amen.

Thursday, April 21, 2011

From The Unborn To The Born

In China, contraception is now apparently important enough to go ahead and start killing people already born. Truly a great leap forward for that nation's birth control program.

On March 21, family planning officials entered the home of Xu Shuaishuai to seize his sister for a forced sterilization. Unable to find her, they beat Xu’s father and when Xu defended his father from the attack, one of the Chinese population control officials stabbed him twice in the heart with a long knife. Xu died on the way to the hospital.

“This murder is a shocking and extreme example of how coercive family planning presses fear into the hearts of the Chinese people every day,” Littlejohn said. “Women who become pregnant without a birth permit — illegally pregnant — are terrified of discovery and forced abortion. Fathers feel helpless to protect their wives and children. Paid informants — friends, neighbors, co-workers — tear down trust in Chinese society. Family members are detained and tortured.”

Littlejohn said the one child forced abortion and sterilization policy “is causing a demographic disaster for China.”

“Due to the traditional preference for boys, girls are disproportionately aborted,” she explained. “This “gendercide” has given rise to a critical gender imbalance: there are now an estimated 37 million more men than women in China. This gender imbalance is a driving force behind sexual slavery, not only in China but in the surrounding countries as well.”

Let me guess. You're thinking, "This could never happen here." It already happened here.

It is better for all the world, if instead of waiting to execute degenerate offspring for crime or to let them starve for their imbecility, society can prevent those who are manifestly unfit from continuing their kind...Three generations of imbeciles are enough.

Oliver Wendell Holmes said this in the Supreme Court Case of Buck v. Bell. There was only one dissenter in that decision. Sure, I suppose it's ok, since they didn't murder anybody on their way to sterilizing the party in question, but what would have happened if someone had offered the same level of resistance as is described above. At least jail time.

Oh, you might mean that it couldn't happen here NOW. Right. Never in a nation that devalues life to the tune of millions of dead babies a year. I feel a lot better knowing that I live in the enlightened times of our present rather than in our barbaric past when killing those babies was illegal. We're clearly a lot smarter now.

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Burning Churches, The Domestic Edition

While I looked for a replacement image for our site here, I found this unfortunate story over on CNA.

Parishioners at St. John Vianney are determined to rebuild after an April 16 arson attack destroyed their Hacienda Heights, Calif. church.

“The church is completely destroyed, I mean down to ashes and dust. The pews, organ, everything,” parish pastor Msgr. Tim Nichols told the 5 p.m. Sunday Mass. He presented remnants of the altar and tabernacle and said only a few vessels and vestments were saved.

Very sad. Even worse when you read this:

Various crimes have targeted Catholic churches in California in recent years. In January one or more vandals spray-painted the misspelled phrase “Kill the Cathlics” on churches in Anaheim and Irvine.

In May 2010 vandals broke into and ransacked St. Rose of Lima parish school in the city of Maywood in Los Angeles County.

Holy Rosary Church in Woodland near Sacramento has been victimized by theft and vandalism four times since 2007. St. Stanislaus Church in Modesto suffered a burglary and vandal attack which desecrated the sanctuary, knocking down and damaging four statues of the Virgin Mary.

Weren't there congressional hearings a few years ago over the destruction of some churches in Alabama and Mississippi? I won't even bother wondering if some special action will be taken to investigate these matters in California.

Monday, April 18, 2011

Aw, Man

Somebody wiped out my Pius XII image.

Sunday, April 17, 2011

Medjugorje Is "Diabolical," Per Bishop/Exorcist

Holy smokes. Boniface at Unam Sanctam has posted some excerpts from an interview with Bishop Andrea Gemma, a big name in the field of exorcism. The questions here are about Medjugorje. The answers are scathing. Bishop Gemma basically takes a blowtorch to the whole phenomenon.

PETRUS: So, Excellency, how do you define Medjugorje?

"It is an absolutely diabolical event, around which numerous underworld interests revolve. The Holy Church, which alone can make a pronouncement, through the words of the Bishop of Mostar, has already said publicly and officially that the Madonna never appeared in Medjugorje and that this whole production is the work of the Devil."

PETRUS: You speak of "underworld interests". Of what kind?

"I'm referring to 'the Devil's dung', to money, what else? At Medjugorje everything happens for the sake of money: pilgrimages, overnight stays, the sales of trinkets. In this way, abusing the good faith of the poor people who go there with the idea of meeting the Madonna, the false seers have set themselves up financially, they have married and live a wealthy life, to say the least. Just think: one of them, directly from America, with a direct economic profit, organizes tens of pilgrimages every year. These people don't seem to be really disinterested persons to me. Rather, with all the people vulnerable to this noisy swindle, they evidently have a great material interest in getting people to believe that they see and speak with the Virgin Mary."

PETRUS: Monsignor Gemma, is there no appeal from your verdict?

"Could it be otherwise? These people claim to be in contact with the Madonna, but in reality are inspired solely and exclusively by Satan, are creating chaos and confusion among the faithful for the sake of absolutely deplorable interests and advantages. Think, then, of the disobedience they have fed in the bosom of the Church: their spiritual guide, a Franciscan friar expelled from the Order and suspended a divinis, continues to invalidly administer the sacraments. [NB: The interview took place in 2008, before the laicization of Tomislav Vlasic.] And numerous priests from all over the world, despite the express prohibition of the Holy See, continue to organize and participate in pilgrimages with Medjugorje as their destination. It's a shame! This is why I speak of a mixture between personal and diabolical interests: the false seers and their helpers are pocketing money, and the Devil creates discord between the faithful and the Church; the more fanatical faithful, in fact, aren't listening to the Church, which - I repeat - has, from the beginning, warned about the mendacity of the Medjugorje apparitions."

Read the whole thing at the link above. There's not much I can add. Rhetoric in the post-Conciliar era doesn't come any more harsh than that.

Saturday, April 16, 2011

Fr. Pfleger May Be Gone

I still know a few folks from the Chicago area, and they've been wondering about this ever since he basically aired his status as a formal heretic on the issue of women priests. Rorate seems to think it's a very real possibility, though. Oddly enough, it isn't about the rejection of the Magisterium, something I guess maybe he's used to by now. It's about his assignment as a priest.

"The Rev. Michael Pfleger also said on the 'Smiley & West' public radio program that he had been banned from speaking at events in the archdiocese and blamed pressure from conservative Catholics and the National Rifle Association for his most recent clash with Chicago’s Cardinal Francis George.

“'I want to try to stay in the Catholic Church,'” Pfleger said. “'If they say ‘You either take this principalship of [Leo High School] or pastorship there or leave,’ then I’ll have to look outside the church. I believe my calling is to be a pastor. I believe my calling is to be a voice for justice. I believe my calling is to preach the Gospel. In or out of the church, I’m going to continue to do that.'”
Weird stuff. We'll post news as it comes.

Friday, April 15, 2011

Any priests or religious readers?

Just curious. Anybody here a priest or professed religious? What about Third Orders? Anybody?

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Birth of a Schism (?)

Hey, maybe I'm wrong, but this is one of those things that you have to think that if it looks, walks, and quacks like a duck . . .

Basically, you've got a bunch of Minnesotans who are organizing a "council of the baptized" that will "to receive input from the people of the Archdiocese, to deliberate on questions of conscience they present, and to prepare and publish consensus statements in their name."

Receiving input doesn't sound so bad. What is all this about deliberating questions of conscience and publishing consensus statements, though? Well, let's take a look at the stated difficulties that have motivated these folks in this direction.

Archdiocesan Catholics want a voice in the direction of their local church. We want a local church inclusive of all age groups, all cultures, and points of view, where communication promotes spiritual growth. We want to manifest God’s love for the world as was Jesus’ mission.

Ah. In all charity, how precisely is Catholicism supposed to accommodate all points of view? We don't ask math teachers to let the kid who says 2+2=5 to just be inclusive of his perspective and let it go. I have absolutely no idea what the "all cultures" bit is about or the thing on communication promoting spiritual growth. In the interest of being fair, I'm not going to guess either.

It’s not that we don’t value the role of the Archbishop as spiritual/institutional leader. We appreciate the value of that role very much.

Well, that's good to know.

The world-wide institutional network of dioceses that is the Roman Catholic Church, with the Bishop of Rome as its symbol of unity and the bishops in regional conferences working together, creates an unparalleled structure for spreading the good news of God’s love for humanity, the message of Jesus.

Ok. Notice the problems here. What is focused on is the network of dioceses and the regional conferences, with the Bishop of Rome as the symbol of unity. Is this really what Catholic ecclesiology is? The Pope (and yes, I noticed they didn't call him that) is just the SYMBOL of unity? I wonder if these folks know how far afield they've gone from Vatican II. Yes, that Vatican II. Specifically, I'm talking about Lumen Gentium and the Nota Praevia that I'm pretty sure none of these people have read.

Through our Catholic practice we have become profoundly aware of the need for institutional change so that the Church can fulfill its mission. We are calling the disconnects we see between the Gospel message and institutional policies and practices “concerns of conscience.” We the people want to partner with the Archbishop and the ordained clergy to voice our concerns of conscience, and to embody the loving community that manifests the Gospel message. We see this as our baptismal responsibility.

"Institutional changes," huh. "Disconnects." Then, of course, the resort to "conscience." I wonder what the reaction of the council will be when their concerns are ignored or perhaps even branded as heretical. Will they obey their bishop? Will they launch some kind of public screed against him? Or will they simply go their own way?

I don't know. I've been worried about this sort of stuff since the Detroit meetings were announced for the American Catholic Council. I hope that our Minnesota brethren are well-meaning. If they are in good faith, then someone needs to get them a better writer for their materials, as this effort is chockful of the code words used by schismatics everywhere.

Saturday, April 9, 2011

Non Serviam

Fr. Z has a recent entry regarding Fr. Roy Bourgeois of Maryknoll. Frankly, I have had nothing good to say of Maryknoll for some time, given that they have been open in their moves to support the schismatic usurpers in China, despite the degradation of the underground faithful who are so persecuted. Fr. Bourgeois's case makes for an interesting study by itself, though, in that he is basically looking at disciplinary action due to heresy. Needless to say, this isn't something we see a lot of these days. In a nutshell, he thinks that women can (and should) be ordained as priests. Fr. Zuhlsdorf does a good job of demonstrating the complete lack of logic and reasoning behind Fr. Bourgeois's arguments, so I'm not going to go into any great detail on that. I guess I'm bringing it up as a sort of counter-point to some of the bad news we've been hearing lately. Between Philadelphia, Assisi: The Sequel, and so forth, even folks who I agree with on a lot of stuff are feeling let down, as evidenced in this article by Sandro Magister. We shouldn't forget that there are good things happening. The guy is getting the axe, in fairly public fashion I might add. I wouldn't have thought that possible ten years ago. It's slow, sure. I wish it was faster myself. We have to trust in God on all this, though. The whackjobs are getting more and more shrill in their protests. This is a good sign. Bourgeois here was willing to admit he is a heretic. That's a big leap, I think. The more they mirror the cries of Satan as he was cast down, the more they will distinguish themselves from the Faith, which will mean less confusion in our own midst. Will things externally get worse? Probably so. Will the Church shrink? Definitely. We shouldn't treat any of this as a surprise. In the end, all we were ever promised was a remnant anyway.

Friday, April 1, 2011

What's Been Bothering Me

You've probably noticed that my updates have been a lot more sporadic lately and have been more news-focused than a lot of our typical fare. Not to mention that a lot of my commentary has probably been even more dour than usual. An issue has come up again that really has been making me uneasy lately. Since this blog is essentially my way of venting to the universe, I figure I can let it all out here.

You may now don your tin-foil hat.

Basically, the event in question is the recent grand jury happenings in Philadelphia. It recalled to mind certain facts.

The Church has enemies, both earthly and supernatural. This is ignored and/or denied by most folks, it seems. Regardless of historical evidence and common sense, few people I speak with acknowledge that many worldly powers would enjoy it very much if the Catholic Church was destroyed.

Bringing up Satan and his infernal legions as our chief Adversary usually results in amused chuckling.

The Church's enemies are not stupid. Far from it. The temporal foes are of a pretty high caliber as far as humans go. Communism alone has had a lot of really smart guys pulling the strings. Even today, we see how far they were able to get with the smear campaign against Pius XII. Bella Dodd was saying just a few decades ago that the Church had been infiltrated by those who wanted to destroy it from within, so you don't even have to look to AA-1025ish accounts or the Permanent Instruction of the Alta Vendita for further reinforcement of this kind of thing.

Now, if the temporal enemies are smart enough to do this, the supernatural enemies are as well. The Irish priest who raised me in the Faith made it a point to remind people that Satan "possesses an intellect far superior to anything you can imagine." It stands to reason that The Adversary would be trying pretty hard to have some of his followers try to pass themselves off as members of the Church. It would make sense that he would want some of these followers to attempt to influence the Church from within by attaining clerical status and rank within the hierarchy.

Let me interject right now that nothing in this post is meant as an accusation against any particular bishop, priest, or anyone else. For all I know, all the guys in Philadelphia might be innocent. False accusations can be a pretty common thing. This reporting is just what made me start thinking about all this again.

Anyways, I look at this whole abuse scandal thing. Then I observe the crisis in the Church today and how individuals within our ranks conspired to engineer all this confusion (see our Vatican II posts). At this point, I have to begin wondering how things got so bad so quickly. Was the hierarchy just that incompetent? Was the world's social upheaval that bad? Were negligence, immorality, and stupidity that pervasive among the clergy that we could wind up with generations of Catholics who lost the Faith, abominable liturgies, heretics and schismatics spreading their lies with impugnity, and priests and bishops acting out the worst sins imaginable against our youth?

Or was it all planned out this way? Don't we have to at least consider the possibility? We know that Satanism is on the rise. There's no reluctance, for example, to admit that we don't have enough exorcists. We know from recent events (and history)that priests and bishops can do some pretty horrible stuff. Even Andrew Greeley claims that there is a dangerous ring of homosexual prelates in the Church who take steps to silence their opposition (just google his work on the "Boys Club"). Is it so big of a leap to consider that their motivation might be to destroy the Church? Whether it's in the name of some secular ideology or some allegiance to the Prince of Darkness, is it that incredible to consider? Of course, the former would be merely a tool of the latter, but the point remains the same. How much of what we are going through is by design?

I'm sure many of you think that this is insane rambling. Possibly so. I hope so. It just strikes me as more and more unlikely that so perfect a storm could arise merely by negligence or the random confluence of so many evil and heretical impulses all at once.