Thursday, 14 January


Robbery DURING MASS thwarted by vigilant parishioners, off-duty police officer at Menomonee Falls parish [The Badger Catholic]

During the 11 a.m. Mass on Sunday, Jan. 10, the congregation at St. Dominic Church heard the second reading from Acts 10 in which Peter tells those gathered that whoever fears God and acts uprightly is acceptable to him.

Given what worshipers witnessed moments earlier, Paul’s words to the Ephesians — “The thief must no longer steal, but rather labor, doing honest work with his own hands…” — may have been more apropos as parishioners, including an off-duty member of law enforcement, helped foil an attempted robbery that occurred immediately after the opening procession.

According to onlookers, the would-be thief, a 44-year-old white male from Menomonee Falls, slipped into one of the front pews and sat next to a woman whose purse he tried to put under his baggy overcoat when she wasn’t looking.

“When we were part way through the processional hymn our musician kind of missed a beat or two on his organ playing, which is very uncommon for him, and when I looked out, at the same time that was happening, I saw what looked like a scuffle on the side aisle, and one of the parishioners had yelled out, ‘You stole that woman’s purse!’” said Deacon Greg Diciaula, who was assisting at the Mass being celebrated by visiting priest Fr. Jerry Hudziak.
continue at MKE CH

Yes, go read the rest, it's really quite the story. He claims he has a gun at one point.... which raises some questions about firearms and self defense in church buildings themselves.


Pope Francis invites 2,000 homeless, migrants to circus [CNA Daily News - Vatican]

Vatican City, Jan 14, 2016 / 03:35 pm (CNA/EWTN News).- On Thursday afternoon the office for papal charities offered a unique charity event for Rome's marginalized: an entire circus organized especially for them.

The poor, homeless, refugees and a group of prisoners were treated to the special entertainment, which was offered to them free of charge at the Rony Roller Circus. The company had made all of its 2,000 seats available for the occasion.

An initiative of the Office of the Papal Almoner, headed by Bishop Konrad Krajewski, the event was announced in a Jan. 14 communique from the office.

The opening act of the show was a song written by a Spanish singer-songwriter who used to be homeless himself, and who dedicated the song to Pope Francis and wrote it to be “an opening prayer and expression of gratitude to the Holy Father for this new act of closeness to each one of them.”

In one of his general audience addresses last January, Pope Francis said that those who put on circus shows “are creators of beauty.”

In light of the Pope's comments, the Almoner's Office said that Thursday's “gift,” offered by circus artists “who with perseverance, commitment and many sacrifices are able to create and give beauty to themselves and to others,” is also a source of renewal for the most needy.

“(It is) an encouragement to overcome the harshness and difficulties of life which many times seem too great and insurmountable.”

The communique also noted that medical personnel from the Vatican Health Services would be on site, and would give free treatment to any of the attendees who might need it. A small snack was also provided after the event.

In addition to the circus announcement, the Holy See Press office also made known the identity of the second family of refugees being hosted by the Vatican, assisted by St. Peter's basilica.

A Jan. 14 communique from the Vatican announced that St. Peter’s has provided an apartment for an Eritrean family, consisting of a mother and her five children. While three of the children are already in Italy, the other two are still in an Ethiopian refugee camp.

They are expected to arrive in the coming weeks, the Vatican said, and explained that the youngest child, only a few months, was born in Norway, where the family had fled. After the child’s birth, the family was sent back to Italy by the Dublin Convention, though the reasons for this were not given.

The family’s presence is a response to Pope Francis' Sept. 6, 2015 appeal for all European parishes, religious communities, monasteries and shrines to house one refugee family.

At the time, the Pope said the two Vatican parishes – St. Peter's Basilica and St. Anne's parish – would also be hosting one family each.

The family hosted by St. Anne’s parish is a Christian Syrian family, consisting of the parents and two children.

They fled from the Syrian capital of Damascus, and are now living in a Vatican-owned apartment just outside the Vatican walls. They arrived in Italy the same day Pope Francis made his appeal.

Pope Francis greeted the Syrian family himself just before he set off for his 10-day trip to Cuba and the United States in September.

Both of the Vatican’s parishes have been assisted in welcoming the families by the Papal Almoner, Bishop Konrad Krajewski, and the Sant’Egidio Community.


Theism in the key of irony [Just Thomism]

Natural selection shows how life arises by a sort of lottery where things survive if the environment is their lucky number. This proves that nature was not set up intentionally. Y’know, like lotteries weren’t.


Hey, What Happened to the Right to Privacy? [Creative Minority Report]

The University of Southern California is demanding to know students' sexual history. Man, the sexual revolution is starting to feel an awful lot like those evil 1950's, huh?

Washington Examiner:

A person's sexual history is no one's business but his or her own. This is especially the case for sexual assault accusers, say victims' advocates. But at the University of Southern California, every student is being asked to provide the school with the details of their sexual history.

Students are required to complete a mandatory online course before they are allowed to register for classes, according to a report from Campus Reform.

"This course is mandatory, and you must complete it by February 9, 2016," university officials told students in an email. "If you do not complete the training by this date you will receive a registration hold until the training is complete."

One student, Jacob Ellenhorn, sent Campus Reform a screenshot of the questionnaire portion of the course, which asked students intrusive questions such as "how many times have you had sex (including oral) in the last 3 months?" and "With how many different people have you had sex (including oral) in the last 3 months?"
Just imagine if a conservative Catholic college asked students their sexual history. Imagine what the left would be screaming. But the administrators at USC are fellow travelers so all is ok, you see?

Y'know, I'm starting to think that the left doesn't really care about the right to privacy.



A brief update on my physical state [The hermeneutic of continuity]

The surgery went well - I woke up from it etc.

Leg & chest hurt intermittently. Coughing not pleasant. Sneezing - aaaargh!

Getting both rest and exercise as instructed. (If you really want to annoy me, send a message telling me "You must reeeest.")

Follow-up appointment with surgeon's team on 18 February. Until then, basically off-duty.

Only saying the old Mass at the moment - less strain on the heart, dontcha know?

Trying to learn how this whole medication/prescription thing works. Delighted when local pharmacist welcomed me and said he had been praying for me at Mass at his nearby parish.

Profoundly grateful for all your kind prayers, Masses, Twitter Angeluses... You will be remembered at the altar. God bless you.


An army of clowns in floppy jack boots [Zippy Catholic]

A number of folks believe that I am not interpreting some of the authors I am citing and linking to correctly: that I just don’t get it, in a phrase. That is certainly possible. In fact it would be astonishing if I managed to always interpret what other people are saying correctly, let alone fit that interpretation into a correct understanding of reality. That’s one reason why actual citation is important.

Language is a fragile medium to begin with, and combined with my own very fallible humanity it may be that I am interpreting incorrectly when Foseti says that “the one key tenet of the neoreaction … [is that] Progressivism is a nontheistic Christian sect” and “Instead of arguing against Christianity, [atheist Richard] Dawkins is arguing for one sect of Christianity over all others,” or when Moldbug says “If there is one general weakness in the conservative strategy, it strikes me as this unwillingness to admit that ‘liberalism’ is actually mainline Protestantism, which is actually Christianity,” or when Nick B Steves says “Better a godless Japan than a Jesus-luvin Baltimore,” or when Gary Pettersen says “…most of us [on the ‘alternative right’] are consequentialists …”.

Examples can be multiplied. The point is that it is possible that when people say these things, I am not interpreting them correctly. There are a number of reasons why this could be the case. I will discuss a few of them, with no pretense of making an exhaustive account.

For example, it could be that the people saying these things are nominalists. A nominalist can say ‘a is a B’ but he cannot really mean it, because to him there is really no such thing as B. B is just a convenient label which we apply to similar particular things for our own purposes; but actual categories of things with essences – essences which determine the categories to which a thing does or does not belong – don’t exist. In practice nominalism tends to be a ‘for me but not for thee’ thing, since nobody can be consistently nominalist and remain sane. Nominalism, as with many perverse ideas, cannot come in a pure form: it must be doped by unprincipled exceptions to avoid winking out of reality entirely.

Another problem though may be that taking these words seriously is to misinterpret them. When Jerry Seinfeld equates cheering for a football team with cheering for the team clothing, what he says is humorous precisely because it is not to be taken seriously. He is making a joke, not describing reality accurately. So part of the problem may be in taking what people actually say seriously when they don’t really mean it seriously, either because they are intentionally unserious or because they don’t really have any idea what they are talking about. They are just clowning around.

If they do not actually mean what they say seriously, it would be a mistake to take what they actually say seriously.

Bonald recently wrote on a different topic:

This reminds me of an afterward of one volume of Father Copleston’s history of philosophy, regarding Marx’s and Nietzsche’s theories of everything. If you say that economic relations or the will to power determine everything, that’s clearly wrong. But if you weaken the claim to say just that these things are important forces, that sometimes they motivate actions, then you have a statement that is true but obvious and uninteresting. So the theories of Marx, Nietzsche, and Freud (the latter being a very similar case) are either interesting but false or true but uninteresting.

Peter Blood observes that some of the alt-right appeal is that:

… argument with other such sociopaths will at least be more interesting. Arguing with run-of-the-mill liberals sucks the life out of you, it’s so boring.

And it is all fun and games until someone actually takes the ideas seriously.


"Neither Penitance Nor Contrition" -- Pope's Press Secretary and Friend's Heretical Theses [The Eponymous Flower]

(Rome) "Global Prayer Network of the Pope" appears at the end of "The pope's video," which video with the pope's prayer intentions for January 2016 appears with an unprecedented break in the papal proclamation. A Catholic priest then enters, the former press secretary of Jorge Mario Bergoglio. A man with abstruse ideas.

In German-speaking countries the initiativve is called Gebestapostolat and was conceived by French Jesuits. It was founded by the L'Apostolate de la Prière, the Jesuit François-Xavier Gautrelet SJ already in the 1860s. In 1890 it was officially transferred by Pope Leo XIII. to the Jesuit order. Thus began its actual international spread. Since then, the respective Superior General is also responsible for the Apostleship of Prayer, which is currently being conducted on behalf of the Superior General of the French Jesuits, Frederic Fornos SJ.

"Unspeakable video with syncretic message"

The novelty of 2016 lies in the fact that the prayer intentions of the Pope are not only in writing, but also spread by a video. "An unspeakable video with a latent syncretic message," said Messa in Latino.

Was produced the controversial video, under the supervision of the Vatican Television Centre Vatican Television Centre (CTV), the media and advertising agency La Machi Barcelona. The publication was carried out directly on Facebook, Youtube, Twitter and other Internet channels.

The pope speaks in his native language, Spanish and tells people what they should pray. The subtitles are in ten different languages.

The first video, which will be followed each month by a new one, was published on January 6, Epiphany. Which sees to promote "inter-religious dialogue" for a minute and a half. The religion of the people is different, but all apparently believe in "love", says the message at its core.

Since then, there has been no lack of strong criticism that accuses the Pope and his communications experts of asserting through a syncretic message the equality of all religions and thus their "equal validity".

Jorge Mario Bergoglio Upon His Raising to Cardinal (2001)
with Guillermo Marco (far right)
Guillermo Marco, the former spokesman for the Archbishop of Buenos Aires

Impetus excite the statement of the Pope, according to which all people, regardless of their creed, "children of God" are. An assertion that is contrary to holy scripture, so the critics. There was clearly told in the name of the Triune God baptized are "children of God". In the Vatican under Pope Francis one seems unstoppable with such "details". The Jesuits appears particularly eager.

The Vatican expert Sandro Magister has meanwhile posed the question, Who is the Catholic priest, who can be seen in the video next to a Buddhist, a Muslim and a Jew. Magister also delivers up the answer. It is Argentina's Guillermo Marco, whom Pope Francis personally knows "very well." Marco was in fact Bergoglio's official spokesman as Archbishop of Buenos Aires for years.

The Argentine "communication range" against Pope Benedict XVI.

At the end of 2006, Cardinal Bergoglio had to separate from him. The reason was a "communication breakdown".

Marco was after interviewwed after the historic Regensburg speech of Benedict XVI. by the news magazine Newsweek. Here, the Bergoglio-speaker made rude suggestions about the German Pope, criticizing his words about Islam. Marco said: "He has destroyed in 20 seconds that which had been built in 20 years with Islam. What he said I do not represent."

That Newsweek interviewed the spokesman for Cardinal Bergoglio suggests that he should have been even the real interlocutor of the Cardinal. This one had previously distanced himself from Pope Benedict XVI. Marco presented in the US magazine, nothing more than the position of his employer. In Buenos Aires, the Cardinal had publicly positioned himself as anti-Ratzinger. It was an operation that did not go unnoticed in other parts of the world. That was all the more remarkable, since Bergoglio was the direct opponent of Benedict XVI. in the conclave of 2005. The public criticism did not go well internally to the church. The Archbishop of Buenos Aires held back from then on.

The Vatican was not pleased with the Argentine shot across the bow. The dismissal by Marcos Bergoglio was the "cleanup" of the matter accordingto the Vatican. The spokesperson had to fall on his sword for the Cardinal.

"But Don Marco did not disappear from the stage," said Magister. His removal as press secretary did not mean the end of his personal connection to Bergoglio which his current appearance in the video at the side of Pope Francis shows.

Pope's friend repentance, remorse, repentance and confession to abolish - or almost

Pope Francis with Guillermo Marco in Santa Marta (2014)

It is not known, says Magister, what Pope Francis thinks about what Marco wrote recently in the supplement Valores Religiosas the largest Argentine newspaper El Clarín.

"The Jubilee, a major challenge" is the piece written by Bergoglio's former press secretary, a new version of the parable of the Prodigal Son. This return home was, "not because he repented, but out of necessity." It was sufficient for the father embrace him again in his arms, without requiring conversion.

Marco openly represents in the Holy Year of Charity a mercy theory, which critics also suspect is hidden behind the "New Mercy" of Pope Francis: a mercy without conversion, the abolition of repentance, conversion and penance, ultimately, the abolition of Jesus' adonition "Go and sin no more".

Marco proposes to the Pope, "to revise the sacrament of penance" because for too many centuries, "the Church has threatened sinners threatened with all sorts of punishments in the present and in eternal life, especially for the private sins, more precisely for those which are connected to the free exercise of pleasures and of sexuality."

Should sin therefore be abolished? No, says Don Marco, but it should, as his proposal to the Pope suggests, make confession necessary "only for sins of public scandal." This is what was, at least in the opinion of Don Marco, the practice of the Church till the 12th century. The private behavior, however, should be a matter between the person and God, which he can decide for himiself, because man is capable of distinguishing between good and evil internum forum.

"Impression that something is going the wrong way"

Pope Francis, who just presented a booklet on mercy in an interview with house vaticanista Andrea Tornielli, which is primarily aimed at sinners and confessors, which hardly follow the theses of his former press secretary. Marco nevertheless casts a further shadow on the Argentine pontificate. After all, he was for several years the "voice of his Lord." It is astonishing at least, that such heretical beliefs proliferate abundantly, so narrowly connected to Bergoglio's environs. "Some [of this pontificate] gives the impression that something is going in the wrong way," the Spanish historian, journalist and Catholic blogger Francisco Fernandez de la Cigoña said in the context of the Synod of Bishops in Rome.

Marco was Bergoglio's spokesman, he fell because of an unreasonable and as it was understood in Rome, "shameless" criticism of Pope Benedict XVI., in which Cardinal Bergoglio had also participated. A match in the thinking between Bergoglio and Marco has found in this first video on the Apostleship of Prayer an "unmistakable."

This applies to the adoption of an "equal validity" of all religions, since the peaceful coexistence of people is seen as a greater good. The same applies to the assertion of an autonomous conscience as the highest judge, as Pope Francis represented for Eugenio Scalfari. And it is also a latent understanding of mercy without conversion and remorse. Key concepts such as indulgences, punishment and purgatory have been shunned by Pope Francis in the context of the Jubilee Year of mercy so far.

Pope Francis could scarcely take up the suggestion of his "friend" (Master's), said Magister, "but it's easy to imagine that Don Marco is already implementing it into practice. Without fear and without remorse." Text: Giuseppe Nardi image: The video of the Pope / Youtube / Pinterst / Periodista Digital (Screenshot) Trans: Tancred Link to Katholisches...



The Sacristy Committee choose a vestment [Fr Ray Blake's Blog]

I hate committee meetings.
The Sacristy Committee here are a hard-nosed lot, as bad as the Committee of the Masters of the Ceremonies and Senior Servers, they have read the books but they are not as bad as the Comptrollers of the Musicke who have read the books and continue to read more of them, especially on the London train and also have Graduale Triplexes, let us say only that they have 'Solemnes connections'!

I suggested that we should have a Year of Mercy set of vestments, after due consideration the above were rejected. The image, 'which to a casual observer might appear to be a two headed monster or even an abduction scene' was rejected. There was stern condemnation of vestments with writing on them, from 'S', our Inclusivity Adviser, 'because they will create a difficulty for the dyslexic'.

In its place the Sacristy Committee thought something a little more 'tranquil'. 'indicative perhaps of restoration to the Garden of Eden or the Resurrection', 'possibly something  that directed one's mind to the comfort of one's grand parent's sofa' might be more in accord.

'L' being a bit of Rigourist reminded the ladies and gentlemen of the committee that the Council (VII) had condemned vestments that depended on 'extraneous decoration' reminding us yet again of the need for 'noble simplicity', 'M' agreed, saying that the Council also stressed the importance of the intrinsic beauty of the fabric and elegance and simplicity of the cut.

Therefore the committee, after long discussion, approved unanimously the vestment below as being in keeping with our style of liturgy, suitable for both forms of the Roman Rite, having both a sense whimsy and at the same time a degree of nobility and it also incorporating many of the colours of the official logo.
I am happy to report that no silkworms died it its making.

At the moment with a strong pound it is worth investing in the future.


Who's Reading The BC in 2015 - a surprising revelation [The Badger Catholic]

So first with the unsurprising news, that is, we care. About stuff.

Rank      State Percent of total
1 Wisconsin 36.41%
2 Illinois 10.18%
3 Minnesota 6.19%
4 California 4.47%
5 Missouri 3.80%

But then get this.... I'm not sure how I feel about it..... A bit frightened perhaps....

Rank City Percent of Total
1 Chicago, IL 5.82%
2 Milwaukee 5.78%
3 Madison 3.10%
4 La Crosse 2.12%
5 New York, NY 1.39%
6 Minneapolis, MN 1.31%
7 Wauwatosa 1.19%
8 St. Louis, MO 1.13%
9 De Pere 0.91%
10 Menomonee Falls 0.89%

.... What's going on here?!?  The Bears fans perhaps think I can play quarterback and are scouting me?  Or something..... far. more. sinister ...?

I've always wondered why Blogger doesn't give insight into RSS hits or the read by email thing, there's no way of knowing how many get content emailed to them.

Other trends, people check less frequently but read longer and more pages.  Ah, get this one:

1 desktop 59.06%
2 mobile 25.58%
3 tablet 15.35%

The mobile theme is not great.  I've actually thought of The BC 3.0 a bit, but side projects put it on the back burner.   Yeah, I even put a picture header.  It seems like a good year to shake things up.  Indeed, it's been a while since I've made discoveries like this and this



Extrinsic and Intrinsic [Siris]

I've been thinking recently about mirror positions and analogies among mirror positions recently, and I wanted to put something up about them so I would have it where I can easily find it. These are mostly half-formed notes, so they might not make sense on their own at every point; and I doubt that they are of much interest except to those who, like myself, have an intense interest in how arguments work.

There seems to be a considerable number of positions meeting the following characteristics: (1) you can pair off the positions according to very broad similarities; (2) the positions are in fact significantly opposed to each other; (3) the opposition primarily depends on the fact that one treats as extrinsic what the other treats as intrinsic. An obvious example of a pair of positions with all of these characteristics is the opposed pair of divine command theory and natural law theory. There are a lot of similarities between the two, to such an extent that people who are being sloppy or who have not seriously looked at either tend to confuse them; but at pretty much every level they are actually opposed to each other, because they are theories of obligation and natural law theory takes obligation to be intrinsic to reason while divine command theory takes it to be extrinsic to reason. There is a kind of reverse symmetry to them, like images in the mirror, where the correspondence of one to the other can be exact and yet opposite as well.

There are many others, however. Here are a few of the most common.

Extrinsic Intrinsic with respect to
Divine Command Theory
(Moral Positivism)
Natural Law Theory Moral Obligation
Legal PositivismLegal Naturalism
(Natural Law Theory)
Authority of Law
Occasionalism Secondary Causes Causation
Intelligent Design Theory Eutaxiology Order in Nature
Ontologism Intellectualism Understanding
Platonism Aristotelianism Universals
HumeanismAnti-HumeanismStatus of Laws of Nature

Some of these tend to join up fairly readily; for instance, ontologists tend also to be occasionalists and some form of Platonist. Divine command theorists are always legal positivists, although, of course, the reverse is not true, since a large number of legal positivists are atheists; but a legal positivist who believed in God would by that very fact have very strong reasons for being a divine command theorist. But these kinds of connections are not necessarily true; I know of no ontologist who is a divine command theorist; the implications of ontologism for how we know things would tend to conflict with the easiest options for how we would know about our obligations given a divine command theory. Underlying motivations for accepting a position also have their role to play in the differences. Many people are legal positivists because they think (whether correctly or not) that it sits well with naturalism; nobody is an ontologist because they think that it sits well with naturalism. Occasionalism, ontologism and divine command theory have all at some point or another been taken as superior to their rivals because they are held (correctly or not) to display more fully the glory and power of God. On the other hand, extrinsic can sometimes set up for extrinsic and intrinsic for intrinsic. I, for instance, find myself on the Intrinsic side all the way down the above list, and on the Extrinsic side regard only Platonism as even remotely tempting, and all for similar reasons. There are other pairs you could give where I would fall on the Extrinsic side -- Materialism as opposed to Immaterialism about the relation between perception of the external world and what is ultimately perceived, for instance -- but on most major disputes of this sort I tend to fall on the Intrinsic side of the divide, precisely because I already accept the arguments for the Intrinsic side in a lot of other domains.

There are a few things of interest that tend to come up.

(1) Modalities show up a lot. Necessities and impossibilities (strong modalities) tend to be explicable in either extrinsic or intrinsic ways. For instance, if I say, truly, "I can't do that", you would usually expect this to mean one of two things: Something is making it so I can't or I have an inability even without some external impeding cause. It's not surprising that we get analogous divisions for strong modalities elsewhere. This raises two obvious questions.

(a) Can you establish these kinds of extrinsic/intrinsic mirror positions for all strong modalities? It would be a nice feature if you could, but there are lots of strong modalities for which it is difficult to see how one would get the division in the first place -- Always and Everywhere are the ones that come to mind immediately, since there seems no obvious extrinsic/intrinsic debate on these modalities in particular. On the other hand, there is a distinction between absolute and relational theories for both time and space, which seems to make such a dispute possible, if it were just focused a bit more -- assuming, of course, that you could do so coherently. Perhaps it's already implicit but philosophers just haven't explicitly reached that debate in particular yet.

(b) Do all extrinsic/intrinsic mirror positions end up being about strong modalities in particular? There are a few that seem a bit difficult to put in these terms -- the materialism/immateralism dispute about perception of the external world, mentioned above, for instance. But we get a similar set of issues here as with the prior question -- it may very well be that this is just because, as a matter of historical accident, nobody's gotten around to formulating them that way yet, or, if they have, it never caught on. (The reverse symmetry of the positions doesn't really tell us much on its own about the underlying motivations for focusing on a particular disputable point or accepting a particular position when one does.)

(2) God shows up a lot. It's quite clear that you can get these kinds of mirror positions without talking about God at all. But we do get God in the picture a lot. I think this is for two reasons.

(a) God is the most powerful cause that could enter into any kind of explanation, being the limit case. If there's any cause you could talk about that could in principle do something in either an intrinsic or an extrinsic way, God is certainly going to count. So when God comes up as an explanation for something, it seems you can always ask whether He does so by external or internal causation.

(b) God is the most widely discussed cause. People talk about God a lot, and across a wider range of disciplines and topics than anything else that is likely to come up. To that extent, God's regular appearance in these situations is for the same reason as God's regular appearance in philosophy generally -- God, by the nature of the case, is potentially relevant to a lot of things. There might also be a question of facility -- people seem to process complicated philosophical disputes more easily if put into religious terms. This might be precisely because God is a limit case -- you can drop qualifications you might need to keep track of in other cases -- or because of greater familiarity.

(3) Criticisms of one extrinsic position at least sometimes have analogues in criticism of another, and the same for intrinsic positions. This raises the question of whether it is, in principle, possible to do this across the board. That would be extraordinarily valuable, if true. It is, of course, not necessarily the case that such criticism will be equally plausible across the board, so one might say yes for structural reasons. But the contents of these kinds of disputes are fairly important for how the disputes work, so it could be that some such analogies are blocked completely for content reasons.


Rachid contra Obama: ISIS are true Muslims [Musings of a Pertinacious Papist]

A message that Obama will never deign to seriously consider:

Related: Sirat Ibn Hisham, "Biography of the Prophet" (PDF), trans. Inas A. Farid (Cairo: Al-Falah Foundation, 2000)

[Hat tip to N.Y.]


Celebrity [ignatius his conclave]

In a unique ecumenical gesture, Anglicans and Roman Catholics are to join in a Memoral Service for singer-songwwriter legend David Bowie. The service, in Rome’s S.John Lateran Basilica, will be attended by Archbishop Justin Welby, and Cardinal Walter Kasper (representing the Pope).

Vatican sources say that they are delighted to celebrate the life of an artist who has made such an impact on the Church. ‘Songs in the true Spirit of Vatican II,’ tweeted Gianfrano Cardinal Ravasi, ‘ a great influence on Bernadette Farrell.’

‘I’m very, very saddened to hear of his death,‘ Welby told L’Osservatore Romano. “I remember sitting listening to his songs endlessly in the ’70s particularly and always really relishing what he was, what he did, the impact he had. Not that I was ever a gender-bender myself, you understand; but a part of me hankered after stacked heels and glitter eye-shadow.’

The service will form part of a day-long tribute replacing the BBC’s advertised schedule and will be presented by Graham Norton.





Homeless in Rome Attend the Circus [ZENIT - The World Seen From Rome]

Balloon up in the sky

Apostolic Almoner Reports That 2,000 Poor Invited to Rony Roller Circus

Read more


The Cause of Homosexuality Is Diabolical Narcissism, Not Celibacy or Chastity [Barnhardt]

The cause of homosexuality, and all aberrosexuality is DIABOLICAL NARCISSISM.

The further one descends into Diabolical Narcissism, the freakier and freakier the aberrosexuality becomes. Think Charlie Sheen.  Think Miley Cyrus and Linsey Lohan. Think all musloid cultures – musloids openly screw blood relatives, children and infants, animals and dead bodies, and islam ratifies this.

Celibacy and chastity have nothing to do with it and are red herrings. Don’t fall for it for a second. There is NOTHING harmful or risky about a psycho-spiritually normal person, fully and normally capable of love and thus BY DEFINITION heterosexual, directing the energy of their sexuality toward a life espoused and in service to Christ and His Holy Church.

Taking a vow of celibacy does not make a man or woman “asexual”.  ASEXUALITY IS HIGHLY DISORDERED, AND A RED FLAG SIGNAL OF CEREBRAL DIABOLIC NARCISSISM. Asexuality, or CLAIMS of asexuality – which are  frequently a cover for homosexuality – should be a DISQUALIFIER for the priesthood and holy orders.

The one and only normal “sexual orientation” is HETEROSEXUALITY. Period. Everything else is diabolical. There is no such thing as a “benign” homosexuality, asexuality or aberrosexuality of any stripe.  ALL are derivatives of Diabolical Narcissism, and thus extremely dangerous to souls, not only of the individual, but also to the people the Diabolical Narcissist comes in contact with.

(Man, I wish someone would make a video presentation about this.  I know it would be long – like three hours – but it is such an important and overarching subject.  Oh… wait.)


Nick Cohen and the atheist enlightenment [Cum Lazaro]

Nick Cohen, I think it would be fair to say, has a 'thing' about religion and more specifically Catholicism. Well, fair enough: we all should have a hobby. But his latest jeremiad anent the papacy is worth looking at in more detail as it typifies the sloganizing of much New Atheism as well as a more general problem in modern public debate.

Cohen attacks the pope (or more recently the Osservatore Romano) for daring to criticize Charlie Hebdo.

They were bawling at the Parisian dead before their graves were dug and the loudest bawls came from Pope Francis. Far too few people can see that he is now at the centre of two malign forms of western self-deception. Liberals reveal their absence of principle by treating him as His Progressive Holiness. Equally smug conservatives use him to justify the unearned notion of western religious superiority over other faiths.
 the true Judaeo-Christian tradition was the 1,600-year tradition of Christians murdering Jews. What civilisation Judaism and Christianity possess came from the outside. They did not reform themselves, which is why calls for a Muslim reformation so spectacularly miss the point. Civilisation came from the battering that religion took from the Enlightenment, from sceptics, scientists, mockers and philosophers, who destroyed their myths and exposed the immorality of their taboos.

Now I actually agree with him in criticizing, 'Cultural conservatives [who] do not want to be reminded that there is no Islamist crime so great the Judaeo-Christian tradition did not once authorise it.' Most of the criticisms of Islam as in some way obviously worse than all forms of Christianity or Judaism strike me as generally misplaced. Islam may not be the religion of peace, but then neither (in straightforward ways) are Christianity or Judaism. Equally, the bloody legacy of the Enlightenment in the French Revolution and Napoleon, let alone in more recent butchery such as Marxism shouldn't be overlooked. Humanity is the problem.

The pope, on any reasonable assessment, is simply reflecting on how people with different views can live together in peace. He's probably right in thinking that brutally caricaturing others' beliefs isn't going to be helpful. (And if he's not, then he might be forgiven for making a plausible mistake.) But Cohen seems to believe that the papacy is at the heart of the problem and rests his case on Kant's essay, 'What is Enlightenment?' (English translation here.)

Unfortunately, Cohen doesn't seem to have actually read the essay or perhaps read it very well. It is not, first of all, a simplistic plea for absolute freedom of speech, let alone absolute freedom of drawing crass caricatures.

We find restrictions on freedom everywhere. But which restriction is harmful to enlightenment? Which restriction is innocent, and which advances enlightenment? I reply: the public use of one's reason must be free at all times, and this alone can bring enlightenment to mankind.
On the other hand, the private use of reason may frequently be narrowly restricted without especially hindering the progress of enlightenment. By "public use of one's reason" I mean that use which a man, as scholar, makes of it before the reading public. I call "private use" that use which a man makes of his reason in a civic post that has been entrusted to him.

To sum up: Kant is concerned not with attack cartoons, but with scholars using reason before a reading public. Moreover, the use of reason outwith this narrowly defined range 'may frequently be narrowly restricted'. In addition, the essay is a plea for an enlightened despot:

But only the man who is himself enlightened, who is not afraid of shadows, and who commands at the same time a well disciplined and numerous army as guarantor of public peace--only he can say what [the sovereign of] a free state cannot dare to say: "Argue as much as you like, and about what you like, but obey!" Thus we observe here as elsewhere in human affairs, in which almost everything is paradoxical, a surprising and unexpected course of events: a large degree of civic freedom appears to be of advantage to the intellectual freedom of the people, yet at the same time it establishes insurmountable barriers. A lesser degree of civic freedom, however, creates room to let that free spirit expand to the limits of its capacity.

Cohen of course notes none of this, not even questioning the oddity of taking but one document as summing up all of the rich variety of that complex cultural event, the Enlightenment. It's worth noting the marginality of the essay and its context. David Hume had completed publishing the Treatise of Human Nature some forty four years before and was eight years in the grave. As noted by the Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy:

Only late in the development of the German Enlightenment, when the Enlightenment was near its end, does the movement become self-reflective; the question of “What is Enlightenment?” is debated in pamphlets and journals.

Nevertheless, the essay, despite its late date and its German provincialism is taken as a symbol of the Enlightenment. And thus a mere contribution to a debate is turned into an essence; an essay rich in nuance and problematic detail into a slogan.

It's also not all clear what the pope has done wrong, even if we take Kant at Cohen's word. He has not called so far as I can see for an legal restriction: he seems simply lamented a lack of prudence in the exercise of a right. If free debate is an 'Enlightenment Value', is the pope wrong to exercise that right to criticize? Moreover, Catholicism might well be argued to have made its peace with the central Enlightenment value of freedom of thought at Vatican II and especially in Dignitatis humanae . No one has to listen to the pope. No one (not even Catholics) is going to be burned at the stake for thinking him wrong headed. Nothing he says seems to regret the passing of the days when this was possible. (I assume that Cohen on the other hand is still all in favour of the guillotine and the crushing of the Vendee. No? Why not?)

It's an oddity that those who proclaim most loudly their adherence to reason in the modern world are sometimes some of the most irrational. Instead of engaging with the thought of great minds to ascertain how balance can be struck between competing values, they substitute slogans. Instead of treating this or that figure or view as admirable, but imperfect, they turn writers and their writings into emblems to be paraded around rather than critically read. Instead of dealing with what people actually say and think, they parrot prejudices. Or as Kant puts it:

That shows how pernicious it is to implant prejudices: they will eventually revenge themselves upon their authors or their authors' descendants. Therefore, a public can achieve enlightenment only slowly. A revolution may bring about the end of a personal despotism or of avaricious tyrannical oppression, but never a true reform of modes of thought. New prejudices will serve, in place of the old, as guide lines for the unthinking multitude.


Pope’s Morning Homily: Faith Is Deciding Factor Between Victory and Defeat [ZENIT - The World Seen From Rome]

Pope Francis, mass, Santa Marta, December 15th 2015

At Casa Santa Marta, Reminds That Faith Can’t Be Learned, Must Be Asked for From God


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Persecution Report: worst offenders. [Catholic Sacristan]

The excellent Catholic Herald (UK) publishes link to Open Doors persecution watch group:
Open Doors list of most dangerous countries dominated by Islamic nations
Last year was the “worst year in modern history for Christian persecution,” according to a report by a group that monitors violence against the faithful.
North Korea tops the Open Doors 2016 World Watch List, of the most dangerous places to be a Christian, for the second year running.
However, of the 50 worst countries to be a Christian, 35 have a problem with Islamic extremism, which “has risen to a level akin to ethnic cleansing,” said the report. Iraq, part of which is in the hands of Islamic extremist group ISIS, is number two on the list.
The other eight countries in the top ten are all Islamic, with Afghanistan, Syria and Libya, all of whom are struggling with ISIS insurgents, at number four, five and 10 respectively.
Pakistan, where Christian farmworker Asia Bibi is still in jail five years after being accused of blasphemy, is also in the top ten.
Among the worst atrocities last year was the murder of 21 largely Egyptian Christians in Libya by ISIS in September.
There are few surprises listed among the worst offenders guilty of the persecution of Christians.

A reasonable person might ask—'Isn't it high time that the mainstream media, which desperately need rehabilitation in the art of balanced and truthful reportage, admit the ideological tie that binds terrorists and persecuting states which results in violence against minority populations?' In other words, what motivations do the following malefactors share?
  • immigrant rapists and thugs in Germany, Finland, Sweden and Britain;
  • governments of Saudi Arabia, Pakistan and Iran;
  • groups such as Boko Haram, Al Quaeda, ISIS and Hamas.
Even the enlightened leaders of our western liberal democracies who frequently demonstrate something less than the intellectual capacity of a squirrel should be able to appreciate the fact that nearly all of the diverse political entities listed at Open Doors claim a common source driving their actions which threaten the well being of minority populations worldwide.


What Pope Francis learned as a young priest. [Abbey Roads]

"For as long as we are alive it is always possible to start over, all we have to do is let Jesus embrace us and forgive us. There is medicine, there is healing, we only need to take a small step toward God, or at least express the desire to take it - a tiny opening is enough." - Pope Francis

When Pope Francis was a parish priest in Argentina, he met a mother with young children who had been abandoned by her husband. 
She had no steady income. When odd jobs were scarce, she would prostitute herself in order to feed her children and provide for her family. During that time, she would visit the local parish, which tried to help her by offering food and material goods. 
One day during the Christmas season the mother visited and requested to see the parish priest, Father Jorge Bergoglio. He thought she was going to thank him for the package of food the parish had sent to her. 
"Did you receive it?" Fr. Bergoglio had asked her.  
"Yes, yes, thank you for that, too," the mother explained. “But I came here today to thank you because you never stopped calling me Señora." - Angelus

From the beginning of his pontificate, the Holy Father's spirituality always reminds me of stories of the Desert Fathers.

Brother, Be Careful ... 
There was a brother who kept a woman in his cell. The other fathers decided to go and expel him from the monastery. An abba heard about this and visited the brother beforehand. The brother hid the woman in a basket, before the abba came in the door. The abba then proceeded to sit on top of the basket and converse with the brother until the other fathers came to visit. The abba ordered the other fathers to search the cell and find this woman. Not finding her, because the abba (who had a gift of seeing hidden things) was sitting on the basket containing her. The abba then chastised the fathers for falsely accusing the brother and judging him. They asked for forgiveness and left. Then the abba got off the basket and told the brother, "Brother, be careful" and left. - Vultus Christi


PHOENIX FROM THE ASHES by HENRY SIRE: UPDATE [Fr Hunwicke's Mutual Enrichment]

On the ANGELICO PRESS blog, Mr H J A Sire published yesterday (January 13) an update of his much-read book Phoenix from the Ashes. I take the liberty of commending this addition warmly to readers. I grab this opportunity to comment on Mr Sire's narrative style by means of a comparison: Dr Aidan Nichols, making a characteristically kindly but perhaps rather faint-hearted defence of the documents


Bishops to Peoples of Middle East: You Are Not Forgotten [ZENIT - The World Seen From Rome]


International group of prelates concludes annual visit to Holy Land, 'determined to give a voice to the voiceless'

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Jorge Bergoglio (Francis) is REALLY Ashamed of Jesus Christ [Barnhardt]

I mentioned the intentional covering of Bergoglio’s pectoral cross in the heretical and hateful-to-God video put out by FrancisChurch last week.  Just so you know that I’m not fantasizing about this stuff, check this out:

"See? I tucked it in so you wouldn't be offended by the sight of that bullshit. Pretty damn humble of me, eh?"

“See? I tucked it in so you wouldn’t be offended by the sight of any of that superstitous bullshit. Pretty damn humble of me, eh? So, are you a Traveling Man too?”

Guys, I keep trying to tell you, THEY DON’T ACTUALLY BELIEVE ANY OF IT.  Bergoglio is HIDING THE CROSS OF CHRIST for fear of “offending” this Jewish man with the Truth and Love of God. Bergoglio would sooner die than tell this Jewish man about Jesus Christ, the Messiah, The Way, The Truth and The Life, and His Holy Church, which is the New Temple and the True Israel.

And some of them, like Bergoglio I strongly suspect, are diabolical narcissists who have devalued God (as Lucifer did) and are now at war with Him (as Lucifer is).  The battlefield in all of this, my dear readers, is EVERY HUMAN SOUL. Including yours.  And Jorge Bergoglio is ON THE WRONG SIDE, and is SQUATTING LIKE A TOAD UPON THE SEE OF PETER.

To all of the people who keep saying that Francis is no big deal, and this too shall pass, I find your cavalier attitude toward the eternal souls of your fellow man who are being scandalized, driven away, and/or confirmed and ratified in MORTAL SIN by this man, human beings, a non-trivial number of which die every day, simply disgusting.

Yes, this too shall pass, but at what cost?  HOW. MANY. SOULS?

Satan and the demons are PROACTIVELY ENGAGED and interested in every human being.  They are intensely interested in each individual person, and realize the enormity of the loss of each individual person, given that The Second Person of the Godhead incarnated, suffered and died so that each INDIVIDUAL person would be redeemed, and perhaps saved.  

Satan and the demons understand that, and more importantly, believe it.  Too bad we don’t.  



How the New Testament Authors Said Mass and Prayed [Jimmy Akin]

twelve apostlesToday we have standardized versions of the words of institution at Mass and of the Lord’s Prayer.

At least within a given language group and rite of the Church, you’ll find priests saying the words of institution and the faithful saying the Lord’s Prayer the same way.

But in the first century, things were not fully standardized.

Originally, the Christian community passed on the Jesus traditions orally, and this oral transmission gave rise to slightly different wordings that are preserved by the New Testament authors.

An interesting result is that we can tell something both about how the New Testament authors said Mass and prayed.


How First Century Christians Said Mass

The New Testament gives us four accounts of the words of institution at Mass. They are found in Matthew, Mark, Luke, and 1 Corinthians.

Here is Matthew’s account, with the words he has in common with Mark bolded:

Take, eat; this is my body. . . .
Drink of it, all of you; for this is my blood of the covenant, which is poured out for many for the forgiveness of sins (Matt. 26:26-28).

And here is Mark’s account, with the words he has in common with Matthew bolded.

Take; this is my body. . . .
This is my blood of the covenant, which is poured out for many (Mark 14:22-24).

You can see how similar they are. Matthew has a few additional words of explanation, which is typical of how his Gospel works. Mark’s is more terse, leaving more for the reader to infer.

Now here’s Luke’s version, with the elements he has in common with Matthew and Mark bolded. I’ve also put certain elements in red, for reasons we’ll see in a moment.

This is my body which is given for you. Do this in remembrance of me. . . .
This cup which is poured out for you is the new covenant in my blood (Luke 22:19-20).

Already you can see how different Luke’s version is. The red elements aren’t in Matthew or Luke.

But they are in Paul.

Here’s Paul’s account of the words of institution, with the words he has in common with Matthew and Mark bolded and the words he has in common with Luke in red:

This is my body which is for you. Do this in remembrance of me. . . .
This cup is the new covenant in my blood. Do this, as often as you drink it, in remembrance of me (1 Cor. 11:24-25).

You can see how similar Paul’s version is to Luke’s. It has an additional sentence at the end, which parallels the words regarding the body to those of the blood, but it is much closer to Luke’s version than to Matthew and Mark’s.


What This Means

What this means is that there were at least two significant streams of tradition regarding the words of institution in the first century—one represented by Matthew and Mark and one represented by Luke and Paul.

There may have been others also, but they did not find a place in the New Testament.

We can also infer something about why these two streams of traditions are represented in the New Testament books they are.

It is almost universally agreed that there is a literary relationship between Matthew and Mark. Either Matthew copied from Mark or Mark copied from Matthew. So the account of one Evangelist could have influenced the text of the other.

But this isn’t the whole of it.

If, as our earliest information indicates, Mark was based on the preaching of Peter, then Mark’s version of the words likely stems from that source: It was how Peter said Mass.

This, as well as the concision of Mark’s account, means it is likely a very early and original version of the tradition.

It’s also probably how Mark himself said Mass (Mark being the first bishop of Alexandria).

Matthew—also an eyewitness of the Last Supper—has a similar but somewhat clarified version of the tradition, and it is likely how Matthew himself said Mass.

Even if Matthew used Mark, when he came to this passage he likely used his own experience in saying Mass when writing this passage.

What about Luke’s version?

We do not have a strong tradition of Luke being a bishop or a priest (note Jerome’s failure to mention him being either of these in his Lives of Illustrious Men, ch. 7).

As a result, Luke may not have been drawing on his experience of saying Mass but on his experience of hearing it, and we know one person who he would have regularly heard saying Mass: St. Paul.

Luke was a regular travelling companion of Paul, as indicated by the “we” passages in Acts (i.e., the passages in which the narration shifts from describing Paul’s travels in the third person to describing where “we” went—indicating the author’s presence at the events).

These passages indicate that Luke was with Paul for long periods of time, and he would have heard Paul say Mass frequently.

Further, both the Gospel of Luke and the Book of Acts were addressed to a particular man, who Luke refers to as Theophilus (Luke 1:3, Acts 1:1), though this may have been a codename to protect his identity (the name means “God-lover” in Greek).

Since Acts abruptly stops in A.D. 60, when Paul is awaiting trial before the Emperor Nero in Rome, it is likely that this is where and when Acts was written. Theophilus was likely an influential Roman Christian, and he may have even been the patron who subsidized the writing of these two works.

Given the interest that Acts takes in Paul, who becomes the dominant figure in Acts (after Peter played this role in the book’s early chapters), Theophilus was likely quite interested in Paul.

Acts—and even the Gospel of Luke—may have been prepared with an eye toward explaining to Theophilus how the Christian movement began and how Paul came to be awaiting trial in Rome.

This means that Theophilus likely knew Paul and had frequently heard him say Mass.

Whether because Luke had often heard Paul say Mass or because Theophilus had (or both), it would be natural for Luke, when coming to the account of the Last Supper, to use a version of the words of institution that Paul often employed.

Luke certainly either had Mark or Matthew in front of him (or both, as other passages in his Gospel show), but he didn’t use the tradition for the words of institution found in those Gospels. Instead, he used the same stream of tradition represented in 1 Corinthians.

We thus could infer from 1 Corinthians itself that this was how Paul usually said Mass, but the evidence of Luke’s use of the same tradition confirms it.

This has implications for something else . . .


How First Century Christians Prayed

Christians in every age have had many free-form, spontaneous prayers, but they also have pre-formed prayers—most notably the “Our Father” or Lord’s Prayer, which is represented in two of the Gospels: Matthew and Luke.

Here is Matthew’s version, with the words he has in common with Luke bolded and with words omitted from Luke in red:

Our Father who art in heaven,
Hallowed be thy name.
Thy kingdom come.
Thy will be done, on earth as it is in heaven.
Give us this day our daily bread;
And forgive us our debts, as we also have forgiven our debtors;
And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil (Matt. 6:9-13).

Here is Luke’s version, with the words he has in common with Matthew bolded:

hallowed be thy name.
Thy kingdom come.
Give us each day our daily bread;
And forgive us our sins, for we ourselves forgive every one who is indebted to us;
And lead us not into temptation (Luke 11:2-4)

As you can see, both versions are similar, but Matthew’s has an additional petition (“Thy will be done, on earth as it is in heaven”) and various clarifying elements (“Our,” “who art in heaven,” and “but deliver us from evil”). The two versions also have a paraphrased element regarding our sins/debts and how we forgive those indebted to us.

Since such clarifications are typical of Matthew’s Gospel, it may be that Luke’s version represents an earlier form of the tradition regarding this prayer.

However, even if it doesn’t, it likely represents something else: How Paul prayed.

Just like the words of institution represented a Jesus tradition that was memorized and frequently repeated in the life of the early Church, so does the Lord’s Prayer.

Indeed, the first was regularly repeated only by priests, while the latter was regularly repeated by all the faithful.

If Luke used what he heard from Paul’s lips at Mass when writing his Gospel, it’s very likely he did the same for the Lord’s Prayer as well.

This would not only have been how he (and Theophilus) heard the Lord’s Prayer from Paul but also how they said it themselves.


Holy Door in Lampedusa Symbolizes Hope for Better Life [ZENIT - The World Seen From Rome]

A distressed vessel discovered by the US Navy (USN) Oliver Hazard Perry Class Guided Missile Frigate USS RENTZ

Events This Weekend Highlight World Day of Migrants and Refugees


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Politics of mercy: Pope knows 'welcoming the stranger' is controversial [CNS Top Stories]


By Cindy Wooden

VATICAN CITY (CNS) -- The Italian comedian talking about a new Pope Francis book was not joking when he said being a minister of God's mercy can have social and political implications.

The corporal works of mercy of feeding the hungry and clothing the naked might not be controversial, but they are socially relevant actions. None of the corporal works, though, is as politically charged in the West today as "welcoming the stranger," particularly if that stranger is a Muslim.

"We are called to serve Christ the crucified through every marginalized person," Pope Francis said in the new book, "The Name of God Is Mercy."

"We touch the flesh of Christ in he who is outcast, hungry, thirsty, naked, imprisoned, ill, unemployed, persecuted, in search of refuge," the pope continued. "That is where we find our God, that is where we touch our Lord."

The U.N. Refugee Agency reported last June that at the end of 2014, the number of people forcibly displaced because of persecution, conflict and violence reached the highest number ever recorded; it had grown to "a staggering 59.5 million compared to 51.2 million a year earlier and 37.5 million a decade ago." The U.N. estimated the number had surpassed 60 million by the end of 2015.

The chief cause of the increase was the conflict in Syria, a conflict that is ongoing and continues to send people fleeing.

In 2015, the U.N. reported, 244 million people, or 3.3 percent of the world's population, lived outside their country of origin.

The plight of migrants and refugees has been at the heart of Pope Francis' concern as pope. Soon after his election in 2013, he went to the Italian island of Lampedusa to pray for migrants who had drowned attempting to reach Europe and to meet those who made it safely and those who have welcomed them.

Meeting Jan. 11 with ambassadors representing their nations at the Vatican, the pope made his concern for migrants and migration the key focus of his speech.

While acknowledging the social and political challenges that come with welcoming migrants, Pope Francis insisted on the human and religious obligation to care for those forced to flee in search of safety or a dignified life.

The pope's concern for refugees is not just talk.

In September, the Vatican's St. Anne parish welcomed a family of four from Damascus, Syria, providing an apartment, food and other assistance because under Italian law, asylum seekers are not allowed to work for the first six months they are in the country. The parish of St. Peter's Basilica is hosting Eritrean refugees. A woman, whose husband is missing, gave birth to her fifth child shortly after arriving in Rome. She, the newborn and two of her other children are living in a Vatican apartment; she hopes soon to embrace her other two children, who are now in a refugee camp in awaiting the completion of family reunification procedures. In the meantime, the woman is hosting another Eritrean woman and her child in the apartment.

Archbishop Silvano Tomasi, the Vatican observer at U.N. agencies in Geneva, said the corporal work of mercy of welcoming strangers is "very political" and people's fears are natural. "It's something unavoidable that when you come into contact with the unknown, you are frightened."

"When we are detached, when we don't know them, we fear them and they fear us. The first reaction is suspicion," he said. To overcome fear and fulfill the Christian obligation of welcome and care, "the first step is to get to know each other."

Setting aside policies and procedures for determining how many refugees to accept, from where and how to vet them, Archbishop Tomasi said governments and politicians must pay greater attention to concrete steps for integrating newcomers. "That is what determines how people will react."

"We must say to migrants, 'You are in need. You are welcome here. We will give you housing, education, security. But there are values you must accept: the separation of religion and politics; respect and equality for women; respect for differences,'" he said.

In Europe and North America, integration is not adequately addressed, the archbishop said, "so it leaves room for misunderstanding, fear and is a way of justifying the rejection of persons who have a right to protection."

Speaking to the diplomats at the Vatican, Pope Francis said an exaggerated concern for oneself leads to indifference toward others and, worse, to "fear and cynicism."

But those forced to flee their homelands are the ones who have the most legitimate fears: Will they and their families survive? Which borders will be open to them? Will they be accepted? Will someone reach out a helping hand as they try to re-establish themselves?

Pope Francis insisted that people are the "paramount value to be cared for and respected." A lack of concern for migrants, he said, stems from the same sense of self-preoccupation and fear of change that views some human beings as "'not yet useful' -- like the unborn -- or 'no longer needed' -- like the elderly."

Welcoming the stranger is not always easy, the pope said. "The massive number of arrivals on the shores of Europe," for example, "appears to be overburdening the system of reception painstakingly building on the ashes of the Second World War." In addition, large numbers of newcomers with a different culture and religious tradition leads to obvious questions about respecting differences while preserving a nation's traditional cultural and religious values.

"Equally significant," he said, "are fears about security, further exacerbated by the growing threat of international terrorism."

Politically, Pope Francis said, nations must "find the right balance" between two serious and binding obligations: protecting the rights and safety of one's citizens and ensuring assistance to and acceptance of migrants.

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Das Ausmaß der weltweiten Christenverfolgung: zensiert....die World-Watch-List veröffentlicht die neuesten Zahlen [Beiboot Petri]

Gerade nach den Kölner u.a. Vorfällen, den Übergriffen muslimischer Männerhorden, die von unseren Politverantwortlichen nach Kräften heruntergespielt werden- hier auch besonders das Totschweigen der Attacken auf den Kölner Dom als Symbol des Christentum- , ist es interessant und wichtig, sich die neuen Zahlen, die die World Watch-List zur weltweiten Verfolgung der Christen herausgebracht hat, anzusehen. Man kann die Forderungen der undifferenzierten "Willkommenskultur" dann besser einordnen.
Anna Bono hat für La Nuova Bussola Quotidiana die Liste und Befunde für 2015 kommentiert.
Hier geht´s zum Original:   klicken


"2015 hat sich die Verfolgung der Christen noch einmal weiter verbreitet und mulitipliziert- sie hat sich auf Länder ausgeweitet, in denen es sie vorher noch nicht gab. Die Zahl der wegen ihres Glaubens ermordeten Christen ist von 4344 im Jahr 2014 auf 7100 angestiegen, darüber hinaus sind 2400 Kirchen angegriffen und zerstört oder schwer beschädigt worden: eine Verdoppelung gegenüber 2014.
Das ist das Ergebnis von World Watch List, die die 50 Länder auflistet in denen Christen am meisten verfolgt werden klicken

Die World Watch List wird jedes Jahr von Open Doors herausgegeben, einer NGO, die seit 60 Jahren die Lage der Christen in der Welt dokumentiert, sie mit Gebeten begleitet und mit materieller Hilfe unterstützt-um- wie man auf der website der Organisation lesen kann- die Christen zu ermutigen, der Verfolgung zu widerstehen und das Licht Christi wieder leuchten zu lassen.

Zum 14 mal hintereinander ist der Spitzenreiter auf der Verfolgerliste Nord-Korea, dessen kommunistisches Regime jede Form von Kult auch privat verbietet. Zwischen 50.000 und 70.000 Christen, beschuldigt, das Verbot verletzt zu haben, werden unter entsetzlichen Bedingungnen in Zwangsarbeitslagern gefangen gehalten, Open Doors bittet, für sie zu beten und für die heldenmütigen Priester, die den Gläubigen beistehen und die Wut des Regimes in Kauf nehmen.

Die WW-Liste 2016:  wo der Christliche Glaube am meisten kostet.

La cartina delle persecuzioni della WWList

An zweiter Stelle findet sich der Irak wieder, bei der vorigen Ausgabe noch Dritter. Ein Land, in dem Christen seit 2000 Jahren leben, und aus dem sie vor dem IS zu fliehen, gezwungen sind.
An dritter Stelle steht Erithrea, das 2002 zum ersten mal in der Liste auftauchte und sehr schnell aufstieg- im Jahr 2014 auf den 9. Platz. Dieses Erithrea ist eine der schlimmsten Diktaturen auf dem Planeten. Das Regime verbietet jede Form von Vereinigungen und Versammlungen und kontrolliert alle religiösen Institutionen. Außerdem hat es massiv zur Entwicklung und Verbreiung des radikalen Islams am Horn von Afrika beigetragen.

Was außerdem aus der Klassifizierung folgt, ist daß alle Evidenz bestätigt, daß der Islam der erste und Hauptverursacher der aktuellen Christenverfolgungen ist.
Fakt ist, daß 7 der 9 Staaten, in denen die Verfolgung so schwerwiegend ist, daß man sie als extrem bezeichnen kann, islamisch sind. Außer dem Irak sind es in der Rangfolge: Afghanistan, Syrien, Pakistan, Somalia, Sudan und der Iran.
In der Reihe der folgenden 16 Länder, in denen der Grad der Verfolgung "sehr hoch" ist,  sind 10 Staaten islamisch-zwei weitere folgen, in Kenia mit einer christlichen Mehrheit und Nigeria, wo 50% der Bevölkerung Muslime sind- werden Christen durch Djihadisten-Gruppen bedroht- al Shabaab-in Somalia entstanden und mit Al Qaeda verbündet und Boko Haram, seit einem Jahr mit dem Islamischen Staat verbündet. Und schließlich Äthiopien wo der islamische Extremismus zusammen mit anderen Faktoren zur Verfolgung beiträgt.

Insgesamt sind es 35 Staaten, in denen der Islam die Kultfreiheit begrenzt ist, die die Christen diskriminieren und sie auch extremen Formen von Gewalt unterwerfen.
Der zweite erhobene relevante Faktor ist die Bestätigung der schwierigen Situation, in der die Christen in Afrika leben. Es sind - wie auch in der vorherigen-16 in der Auswahl präsente afrikanische Staaten,  aber in 7 von ihnen hat sich die Situation verschlechtert und sie müssen in den obersten Kategorien eingeordnet werden, in denen die Verfolgung extrem und sehr hoch ist.
Außerdem gibt es 9 afrikanische Staaten unter den dann folgenden 15: von Platz von 51- 65, in denen Christen auch in geringerer Form verfolgt werden.
Nach Open Doors- sind die Zustände im Mittleren Orient vielleicht noch gravierender als in Afrika.

Sicher sind Afrika, der Mittlere Osten und Zentralasien die geographischen Gebiete, in denen die antichristlichen Verfolgungen am schnellsten zunehmen. Open Doors beweist aber auch andere alarmierende Tendenzen: -über die Sphäre des Islamischen Staates hinaus, haben bewaffnete Gruppen Kalifate gegründet. Eine Verstärkung der Nationalismen, schädigende Kontrollmaßnahmen der persönlichen Freiheit-als Antwort auf den islamischen Extremismus, von Seiten der Muslime eine rigorosere religiöse Praxis, gefährlich- weil sie zu  einer intoleranten Haltung gegenüber Gläubigen anderer Religionen führen kann, aus Angst, daß ihr Land in die Hände der Extremisten und von Schläferzellen des IS, die aktiv werden könnten, und auch ein Anstieg der Zahl der Staaten, in denen die Minderheiten- eingeschlossen die christlichen,  der Herrschaft gewalttätiger Gruppen überlassen werden.

Und eine letzte Tendenz, die die Relatoren von World Watch  festgestellt haben, ist der Exodus der Christen, ein Phänomen, das besonders von Djihadisten verwüstete Länder mit muslimischer Mehrheit betrifft.
Auch in diesem Fall ist die Situation im Mittleren Osten am verzweifelsten, aber in Afrika kaum besser.
Besonders auf diesem Kontinent- und da besonders in der Subsahara-Region- ist die Zahle der Christen, die fliehen oder vertrieben werden, auf Hunderttausende angestiegen- wie z.B. aus dem Nordosten Kenias und aus Nigeria, wo die Anwesenheit der Djihadisten keine Hoffnung mehr läßt."

Quelle: la Nuova Bussola Quotidiana, Anna Bono


How Has Being Pro-Life Changed You? [ZENIT - The World Seen From Rome]

Pope Francis hugs a baby during his first day at Turin, Sunday 21st of June 2015

Bishops Call Faithful to Participate in Novena Surrounding Roe v Wade Anniversary -- It Starts Saturday


Read more


Starting Thursday Off Right: fight! Fight! FIGHT! Edition [Barnhardt]

Our Father, Who art in heaven, hallowed be Thy Name. Thy kingdom come. Thy will be done, on earth as it is in heaven. Give us this day our daily bread. And forgive us our trespasses, as we forgive those who trespass against us. And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil. Amen.

PATER NOSTER, qui es in caelis, sanctificetur nomen tuum. Adveniat regnum tuum. Fiat voluntas tua, sicut in caelo et in terra. Panem nostrum quotidianum da nobis hodie, et dimitte nobis debita nostra sicut et nos dimittimus debitoribus nostris. Et ne nos inducas in tentationem, sed libera nos a malo. Amen.


“It is better that the truth be known than that scandal be covered up.”
St. Augustine

“Not to oppose error is to approve it; and not to defend truth is to suppress it; and indeed to neglect to confound evil men, when we can do it, is no less a sin than to encourage them.”
Pope St. Felix III

“If the faith is in imminent peril, prelates ought to be accused by their subjects, even in public.”
St. Thomas Aquinas

“The greatest obstacle in the apostolate of the Church is the timidity or rather the cowardice of the faithful.”
Pope St. Pius X



While I almost read the article about collaboration between Philip Glass and... [marcpuck]

David Bowie, requiescat in pace, instead I turned to this one (via Sinfini's weekly email) which features ten singers (well... ) performing the aria Der Hölle Rache kocht in meinem Herzen from Mozart's Die Zauberflöte. My award for the greatest contrast between the ugliness of the production and the clarity of the voice goes to this-- from Bochum in the early years of the century-- clip of Erika Miklósa. Somehow I screwed up the font and while it is very irritating am not spending any more time on fixing it, pft.


Pope's Message for Jubilee of Young People [ZENIT - The World Seen From Rome]

Pope Francis whit Young Singers

"The Lord has a great dream which, with your help, he wants to come true!"

Read more


Kansas To Cut Off Planned Parenthood Funding [Creative Minority Report]

Sam Brownback, the Governor of Kansas, just announced that he's instructed state officials to cut off all state Medicaid funding to Planned Parenthood.

"No longer will we send the money of hard-working Kansans to fund an industry that disrespects life and violates the moral conscience of our people," the Republican governor reportedly said.

The abortion giant is already announced its intention to sue. Laura McQuade, head of the Kansas and Mid-Missouri Planned Parenthood, reportedly said "Kansans and their health care providers are not Mr. Brownback's punching bag and we will fight back."

They obviously feel entitled to taxpayer money. Sadly, there are likely any number of judges who agree. But this fight is worth having. Go Brownback!

Cutting off funding to Planned Parenthood would be a huge victory for life. There's no reason this monstrous organization should be receiving taxpayer money.



Fundamentalism of the Sources: Problems with Some Practices of Source Criticism – Part 9 [Theological Flint]

This is from Theological Flint

Next, we can consider the distortions in readings that occur on account of many practices of Source Criticism. It often happens, in a college or even high school course on the Bible, that the very first thing broached in a reading of Genesis or Exodus or Isaiah or the “Deuteronomic Histories” or Mark or Matthew […]

The post Fundamentalism of the Sources: Problems with Some Practices of Source Criticism – Part 9 appeared first on Theological Flint.


Synagogue visit is chapter in Rome's unique Catholic-Jewish history [CNS Top Stories]

IMAGE: Paul Haring

By Cindy Wooden

ROME (CNS) -- History and geography have combined to make Catholic-Jewish relations in Rome unique, both negatively and positively -- a fact highlighted by modern papal visits to the city's main synagogue just two miles from the Vatican.

Pope Francis was scheduled to visit the synagogue Jan. 17, just as Pope Benedict XVI did in 2010 and St. John Paul II did in 1986.

The city's Jewish community existed before Jesus was born "and the Christians who arrived here were (originally) Jews themselves so this place has an enormous symbolic meaning," said Rabbi Riccardo Di Segni, the chief rabbi of Rome. But, "the persecution we suffered, persecution by the church" for centuries, including the 300 years when popes forced the city's Jews to live in a ghetto, also makes Rome unique.

The main synagogue "was built on the ruins of the ghetto," the rabbi told Catholic News Service Jan. 14 as he and his staff prepared to welcome the pope.

Especially since the Second Vatican Council, the general trend in relations between the popes and Rome's Jewish community, like between Catholics and Jews elsewhere, is "good relations, friendship" and the possibility of confronting with frankness any problems that arise, Rabbi Di Segni said.

The rabbi has met with Pope Francis several times and has had telephone conversations with him as well; "there is always an open line in case of necessity."

"This visit is important because it gives two important signals: The first signal is continuity," demonstrating that "the route opened by John Paul II and followed by Benedict XVI is now going forward," he said. The second signal is a recognition of the importance of mutual respect and dialogue at a time of increasing "violence inspired and sustained by distorted visions of religion."

"We are a kind of symbolic center, due to our history and position," he said, for demonstrating to the world that dialogue and peace are possible even between communities with a painful history and that centuries of denying or denigrating the other's beliefs can come to an end.

The rabbi said he hopes Pope Francis will make some public reference to "The Gifts and the Calling of God Are Irrevocable," a statement issued in December by the Pontifical Commission for Religious Relations With the Jews. The statement provides a brief summary of 50 years of Catholic-Jewish dialogue, looks at some theological questions that have arisen in the dialogue and states that the Catholic Church "neither conducts nor supports" any institutional missionary initiative directed toward Jews.

"The point about the conversion of the Jews is very important to contributing to improving relations," the rabbi said, and for creating "a positive atmosphere, without any doubts" about Catholics' motivations for engaging in dialogue with Jews.

The document, which is theological in nature, needs to reach the public, the rabbi said, and the pope speaking about it during his visit to the synagogue would help.

While Rabbi Di Segni knows the pope "is the pope of surprises," he was expecting Pope Francis to speak about mercy at the synagogue since it is the Year of Mercy and the virtue is a theme in almost every papal speech.

The Rome rabbi said he appreciates that in talking about God's mercy Pope Francis has rejected a facile and false dichotomy that contrasts the God of the Hebrew Scriptures with the God of the New Testament as if the Jews believed only in "the God of justice" and Christianity invented "the God of mercy."

Pope Francis "is much more honest and linked to the basic biblical tradition which speaks about 'a God of justice and mercy' together," the rabbi said.

"We appreciate this and we appreciate that mercy must be a central point in our relations," he said. "God gives us the example, the model" for how people must behave toward one another.

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A video to accompany this story can be found at

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Brother Maurus, run fast! [Vultus Christi]

SS Mauro PlacidoMaurus Rescues Placid from the Waters
In Chapter VII of the Second Book of the Dialogues, Saint Gregory the Great recounts the most famous episode in the life of Saint Maurus, the one that, in fact, inspires the choice of texts for the Mass and Office of his feast:

On a certain day, as venerable Benedict was, in his cell, the foresaid young Placidus, the holy man’s monk, went out to take up water at the lake, and putting down his pail carelessly, fell in himself after it, whom the water forthwith carried away from the land so far as one may shoot an arrow. The man of God, being in his cell, by and by knew this, and called in haste for Maurus, saying: “Brother Maurus, run as fast as you can, for Placidus, that went to the lake to fetch water, is fallen in, and is carried a good way off.”

A strange thing, and since the time of Peter the Apostle never heard of! Maurus, begging his father’s blessing, and departing in all haste at his commandment, ran to that place upon the water, to which the young lad was carried by force thereof, thinking that he had all that while gone upon the land: and taking fast hold of him by the hair of his head, in all haste he returned back again: and so soon as he was at land, coming to himself he looked behind him, and then knew very well that he had before run upon the water: and that which before he durst not have presumed, being now done and past, he both marvelled, and was afraid at that which he had done.

Coming back to the father, and telling him what had happened, the venerable man did not attribute this to his own merits, but to the obedience of Maurus: but Maurus on the contrary, said that it was done only upon his commandment, and that he had nothing to do in that miracle, not knowing at that time what he did. But the friendly contention proceeding of mutual humility, the young youth himself that was saved from drowning did determine: for he said that he saw when he was drawn out of the water the Abbot’s monastic garment upon his head, affirming that it was he that had delivered him from that great danger.

Here, then, are some of the antiphons and collect from the Office of today’s feast:

At First Vespers
Magnificat Antiphon

O most blessed of men! *
who, rejecting this world,
bore the yoke of Holy Rule from tender years so lovingly;
and being made obedient even unto death,
he denied himself, that he might wholly cling to Christ his Master, alleluia.

At Lauds and at the Hours

1. The blessed Maurus, *
born of a renowned and humble house,
from his boyhood esteemed the sufferings of Christ
greater riches than the treasures of the world.

2. Upheld by wings of obedience, *
he walked upon the waters;
and borne by the Spirit of God,
he was saved from sinking in the flood.

3. The blessed Maurus, *
a disciple of holy Benedict from tender years,
stood forth as a zealous follower of his master’s excellence.

4. From the house of prayer, *he passed over unto the place of the wondrous tabernacle,
even unto the house of God,
with exceeding love of whom he burned.

5. He was chosen *
by the Lord to be an example to the cloistered,
and a chief observor of the Holy Rule.


O God, who for a pattern of obedience
didst cause blessed Maurus to walk dry–shod upon the waters;
grant that we may both follow perfectly the example of his virtues,
and also be worthy to share in his reward.

At Second Vespers
Magnificat Antiphon

Today holy Maurus, * lying upon a goat–skin, died happily before the altar;
today the first–begotten disciple of blessed Benedict,
through the guiding of the Holy Rule,
came up to Christ, rising untroubled, accompanied by choirs of angels;
today the obedient man, telling his victories,
was worthy to be crowned by the Lord, alleluia.


Pope to teens: Don't fall for hate, fearmongers; find nice friends [CNS Top Stories]

By Carol Glatz

VATICAN CITY (CNS) -- Don't fall for hate and fearmongering from others; make new friends instead and always help and show concern for others, Pope Francis told the world's teens.

"Be brave and go against the tide, be friends of Jesus, who is the prince of peace," he said in a written message for the Jubilee of Mercy for Young People, scheduled to be celebrated in Rome and dioceses around the world April 23-25.

In his written message, released by the Vatican Jan. 14, the pope said the Year of Mercy is open to everyone so they may experience "a time of grace, peace, conversion and joy."

God invites everyone, he said, because "there are no walls or distances which can prevent the father's mercy from reaching and embracing us."

While three days in April have been set aside for those between 13 and 16 years of age, every day of the jubilee year marks "a chance for us to grow in holiness."

It is also a time to realize "that life together as brothers and sisters is like a great party, perhaps the most beautiful party we can imagine, the endless party that Jesus has taught us to celebrate by his Spirit."

However, the pope said, "I cannot forget those of you who are living in situations of war, extreme poverty, daily troubles and loneliness. Don't ever lose hope! The Lord has a great dream which, with your help, he wants to come true."

Other young people around the world have not forgotten about those who are less fortunate and they "are working for peace and justice for everyone everywhere," he said.

"Don't be taken in by the messages of hatred or terror all around us. Instead, make new friends. Give of your time and always show concern for those who ask your help," he said.

Pope Francis reminded young people that preparing for a pilgrimage or jubilee celebration didn't just mean getting backpacks and banners ready, "but your hearts and minds as well."

He urged them to grow closer to Jesus and draw nourishment from the sacraments. Becoming more merciful during the Year of Mercy means not only growing "in a love which is courageous, generous and real," it is means greater spiritual growth, too.

"You are preparing to be Christians capable of making courageous decisions in order to build daily, even through little things, a world of peace," he said.

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Editors: The pope's message for the Jubilee of Mercy for young teens can be found in English at:

And in Spanish at:

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Copyright © 2016 Catholic News Service/U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops. All rights reserved. Republishing or redistributing of CNS content, including by framing or similar means without prior permission, is prohibited. You may link to stories on our public site. This copy is for your personal, non-commercial use only. To request permission for republishing or redistributing of CNS content, please contact permissions at


The Pig [Laudator Temporis Acti]

Augustine, Expositions of the Psalms 73.25 (tr. Maria Boulding):

Now it is possible that the one who maintains, "Once I'm dead, I shall no longer exist," is a person of some education, and he has learned this from a crazy fellow named Epicurus, a so-called philosopher, but in truth a lover of futility rather than a lover of wisdom. Philosophers themselves dubbed him "the Pig," because they held that a "philosopher" who held bodily pleasure to be the supreme good deserved to be called a pig wallowing in the mire of the flesh. So perhaps it is from this man that our educated objector has learnt to say, "Once I'm dead, I shall no longer exist."

et forte qui dicit: cum mortuus fuero, postea nihil ero: et litteras didicit, et ab Epicuro didicit hoc, nescio quo deliro philosopho, vel potius amatore vanitatis, non sapientiae; quem ipsi etiam philosophi porcum nominaverunt: qui voluptatem corporis summum bonum dixit, hunc philosophum porcum nominaverunt, volutantem se in coeno carnali. ab illo forte didicit iste litteratus dicere: non ero posteaquam mortuus fuero.
Partially quoted, without an indication of source, by Isidore, Etymologies 8.6.15 (tr. Stephen A. Barney et al.):
The Epicureans ... are so called from a certain philosopher Epicurus, a lover of vanity, not of wisdom, whom the philosophers themselves named 'the pig,' wallowing in carnal filth, as it were, and asserting that bodily pleasure is the highest good.

Epicurei dicti ab Epicuro quodam philosopho amatore vanitatis, non sapientiae, quem etiam ipsi philosophi porcum nominaverunt, quasi volutans in caeno carnali, voluptatem corporis summum bonum adserens.
I am "Epicuri de grege porcum," in the words of Horace (Epist. 1.4.16) — a pig from Epicurus' herd.

  • Simone Marchesi, "Epicuri de grege porcus: Ciacco, Epicurus and Isidore of Seville," Dante Studies 117 (1999) 117-131
  • James Warren, Epicurus and Democritean Ethics: An Archaeology of Ataraxia (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2002), pp. 113-116, 129-136
  • David Konstan, "Epicurean Happiness: A Pig's Life?", Journal of Ancient Philosophy 6.1 (2012) 1-24

Statue of a pig, Villa dei Papiri, Herculaneum (from Warren, p. 133)


Pope's message to youth: have courage to swim against the tide [CNA Daily News - Vatican]

Vatican City, Jan 14, 2016 / 05:47 am (CNA/EWTN News).- Pope Francis has sent a special message to the youth who will participate in the Jubilee of Boys and Girls in April, telling them the Holy Year is an opportunity to grow in holiness and mercy, so that they become Christians capable of making courageous decisions.

“Remain steadfast in the journey of faith, with firm hope in the Lord. This is the secret of our journey! He gives us the courage to swim against the tide,” the Pope said in his message to youth, published Jan. 14.

Francis told the youth to “pay attention,” because while going against the current is good for the heart, “we need courage to swim against the tide. Jesus gives us this courage!”

With Jesus “we can do great things,” he said, and encouraged the youth to commit themselves to great and important ideals.

“We Christians were not chosen by the Lord for little things; push onwards toward the highest principles. Stake your lives on noble ideals,” he said, repeating his appeal to the youth on whom he bestowed the sacrament of Confirmation in 2013.

Pope Francis’ message is aimed at youth ages 13-16, who are the primary participants in the Jubilee for Boys and Girls, which will be celebrated April 23-25 as part of the pontiff’s larger Jubilee of Mercy.

Youth who come on pilgrimage to Rome for the event will on the first day be able to have confession at St. Peter’s and pass through the basilica’s Holy Door, before processing to the tomb of St. Peter.

Day one will close with a youth rally, which will be followed by a Mass with Pope Francis inside St. Peter’s Basilica the next morning. The event will close with individual activities, as well as more visits to the Holy Door.

In his message to youth, Pope Francis encouraged youth to participate in the event, telling them that the Jubilee is “a year-long celebration, in which every moment becomes a chance for us to grow in holiness.”

“It is a time when we can discover that life together as brothers and sisters is like a great party, perhaps the most beautiful party we can imagine, the endless party that Jesus has taught us to celebrate by his Spirit.”

No one is excluded from this party, he said, adding that he is looking forward to seeing many youth in Rome for the April event.

Turning to the theme of the Holy Year, “Merciful Like the Father,” the Pope explained that being merciful means to grow in a love that is “courageous, generous and real,” while at the same time growing in both a physical and spiritual capacity.

As youth, “you are preparing to be Christians capable of making courageous choices and decisions, in order to build daily, even through little things, a world of peace,” he said, and encouraged them to be bold in making decisions contrary to what modern society tells us.

Francis then turned his attention to youth living in situations of war, poverty and loneliness, telling them to never lose hope.

“The Lord has a great dream which, with your help, he wants to come true!” he said, explaining that their peers who are better-off “have not forgotten you,” but are working to establish global peace and justice for everyone.

Rather than being taken in by all the messages of hatred and terror that surround us, it’s necessary to make new friends, the Pope said, encouraging them to give of their time and to always show concern toward those who ask for help.

“Be brave and go against the tide; be friends of Jesus, who is the Prince of Peace,” he said. “Everything in him speaks of mercy. Nothing in him is devoid of compassion.”

While not everyone can make it to Rome for the celebrations, everyone is invited to participate in the Jubilee for Youth and to celebrate in this moment of joy, even within their local dioceses, Francis said.

He told them that preparations for the event shouldn’t stop at just making banners, but they must also prepare their hearts and minds.

“Think carefully about the hope and desires you will hand over to Jesus in the Sacrament of Reconciliation and in the Eucharist which we will celebrate together,” he said, and told them to remember as they walk through the Holy Door that they are making a commitment.

“You are committing yourselves to grow in holiness and to draw nourishment from the Gospel and the Eucharist, the Word and the Bread of life, in order to help build a more just and fraternal world.”


Verrecchio's "Pope" video removed - Rome is running scared, scared of John and Mary Catholic [Vox Cantoris]

They have every right to demand protection of their copyright. That is fine, Not that I blame Louie, mind you; I thought his take was brilliant.
What is more important in this, is that Louie Verrecchio and the rest of us have these rats running scared. They know that we have the wherewithal to out and expose them for their dastardly deeds. They will not win and we will confront them everywhere and through whatever means are necessary.
Let this be a lesson to all of them, particularly those religious orders hiding sodomites in their midst.  
They will be outed and brought down low.
BREAKING: “The Pope Video” removed

Screenshot_1Apparently, after more than 8,000 views, the masterminds of “The Pope Video” have decided that my rendition offering a more proper translation of the apostasy therein must be suppressed.
I just received the following notice from Vimeo:
“We removed your video because a third party claims that it infringes a copyright that the third party owns or has the right to enforce.”
It’s not clear whether this action was instigated by the Pope World Prayer Network – Apostleship of Prayer, (the Jesuit group that produced the wretched thing) or someone at the Holy See, but it would seem that these are the only possible claimants.
What is it about my version that unsettles them so?
I think we all know the answer. In any case, watch, share and download the video (now uploaded at before it meets the same fate.


A Kind of Wisdom [Laudator Temporis Acti]

Ernest Renan (1823-1892), Recollections of My Youth, tr. C.B. Pitman (London: Chapman and Hall, 1883), p. 59:

A philosophy, perverse no doubt in its teachings, has led me to believe that good and evil, pleasure and pain, the beautiful and the ungainly, reason and folly, fade into one another by shades as impalpable as those in a dove's neck. To feel neither absolute love nor absolute hate becomes therefore wisdom.

Une philosophie, perverse sans doute, m'a porté à croire que le bien et le mal, le plaisir et la douleur, le beau et le laid, la raison et la folie se transforment les uns dans les autres par des nuances aussi indiscernables que celles du cou de la colombe. Ne rien aimer, ne rien haïr absolument, devient alors une sagesse.


Learning to Entreat [Dominicana]

In today’s Mass readings, the Church proposes two contrasting accounts of religious entreaty.  In the pericope from the First Book of Samuel, we read how the Israelites, having been defeated once by the Philistines, placed the ark of the covenant in the midst of their army as they began a second battle.  The plan fails […]


Our Ordinariate [Fr Hunwicke's Mutual Enrichment]

Tomorrow is the fifth Anniversary of the Foundation of the Ordinariate of our Lady of Walsingham and Blessed John Henry Newman. Gracious, what a lot seems to have happened in a short time! It is also the fifth Anniversary of the Appointment of the Right Reverend Mgr Keith Newton Protonotary Apostolic as Ordinary. All his subjects, both clerks and laics, will wish him every blessing as he


Catholic hospitals and the fight for medical standards [ - Commentary on Catholic News and World Affairs]

For the foreseeable future, political pressure on the Catholic Church in the US will be concentrated on medical issues. If you doubt that, join me on a quick tour through some of this week’s significant newspaper items:


A Traditional Churching and Baptism in Oxford [LMS Chairman]


'Churching' is the blessing of a woman after childbirth. It is involves leading the new mother into the church, and many beautiful prayers of thanksgiving and blessings. No new mother should miss out on it.



The traditional Rite of Infant Baptism uses a series of three exorcisms, including the use of specially exorcised salt (above), and a number of anointings (below).


The godmother is holding the baby.


St Augustine defended the honour of married women against the exaggerated claims of consecrated virgins, pointing out that whereas the latter imitated Our Lady by their virginity, married women imitated her by their fecundity. That while virginity might be the higher calling, the raising of new Catholics for the Church was a necessary and honourable work. This is something we should never forget, as parents: that the next generation of Catholics is, literally, in our hands.

Support the work of the LMS by becoming an 'Anniversary Supporter'.


The Numbers Game [ignatius his conclave]



Average Sunday attendance figures in the Church of England are now a third of what they were in the 1960s – The Daily Telegraph.

Numerical decline, paradoxically, proves to be grist to the mill of both liberals and conservatives in the wearily protracted skirmish, which is being played out in the churches of Western Europe and the Americas, between the forces of the Enlightenment and those of historic Christianity.

Attendances are slipping, say the Liberals, because the Church is dangerously out of step with the ambient culture; it must change to be heard. Numbers are in decline, say the Traditionalists, because the faith has been so diluted that it is no longer a distinctive voice in the public square.

How to tell who is right? Like arguments about global warming, the facts themselves (even were they undisputed) could never prove conclusive.

No matter; attendance figures are largely irrelevant. Two conflicted ethical a priori positions cannot be reconciled by mere demographics. This is not an election.  If push came to shove, neither party would be prepared simply to adopt the majority position. Traditionalists – to take the presenting issue – believe that marriage is sacrosanct and that sexual activity outside it (heterosexual or otherwise) is sinful. Liberals believe that sin is in the refusal to condone and embrace the sexual choices of others; in being ‘discriminatory’ and without compassion.

In a war between rights and duties, who can win? The protagonists, it would appear, are condemned to slugging it out, like predators in the primeval jungle. Neither side can land a fatal blow. Like the conflict between Islam and ‘Western Values’, this one is perennial (and not unrelated).


The Problem with Indignation [iBenedictines]

We all know what makes us indignant. Sometimes our outrage is accompanied by a nice warm glow of self-approval as we condemn what everyone else seems to accept uncomplainingly: war, poverty, disease, that sort of thing. I exaggerate, but for (…)

Read the rest of this entry »


Miterlösung mit Pfeilen erklärt (oder: Coredemptrix für Dummies) [Denzinger-Katholik]

... und einen Text gibt es in Bälde noch dazu!

Johannes Brinktrine: Die Lehre von der Mutter des Erlösers. Paderborn: Schöningh-Verlag 1959, S. 104.


Papal Address to the Diplomatic Corps [Diligite iustitiam]


The family, always foremost in the thoughts of Pope Francis, was given special attention on January 11 in the speech he...

Posted by Vatican Radio - English Section on Wednesday, January 13, 2016


Distinguishing Tradition-mindedness from other minds. A meditation. [Catholic Sacristan]

To help avoid confusion, here then are a few points of clarification regarding language or vocabulary:
  1. Tradition-minded refers to a mindset that honours Tradition but is not constrained by a narrow traditionalism which imprisons dialogue within the confines of, among other things, conspiracy theories levied against the Second Vatican Council, and so forth. Tradition-mindedness honours completely the the authority of the Magisterium of the Church, defends the Sacred Liturgy (Ordinary Form, Pauline Missal) from abuse and appreciates and honours the Extraordinary Form of the Mass. The Tradition-minded person thinks with the Church (sentire ecclesia).
  2. Traditionalist refers to a mindset that tends to lock its proponents within a framework which, by all appearances, lauds the Tradition of the Church but fails to obey the legitimate authority of the Church and fails to acknowledge the legitimacy, for example, of the Ordinary Form Mass. Obedience is as obedience does. Obedience to Truth requires trust that never abandons nor marginalizes nor misappropriates the authority of the Vicar of Christ and the Church Christ founded upon Saint Peter.
  3. Liberal or progressive refers to a massively broad political ideology which has infiltrated the Church and manifests commonly as heresy, dissent, liturgical impropriety and so on. The person espoused to modern liberalism and/or progressivism lauds the primacy of conscience without acknowledging the necessity of the proper formation of conscience according to reason and the teaching of the Church. Liberals of the (c)atholic variety, in practice, are very close to anarchists. Anarchists, typically, loathe the calm of reasoned argument, eschew debate and prefer confrontation. Revolution = evolution; it matters little that revolution relies on casualties to permit its ascension.  Liberals, too, avoid engaging in robust debate with the received knowledge and wisdom that the official Magisterium of the Church brings to a given topic. Modern liberalism, contrary to a classical understanding of liberalism, results in a dictatorship of relativism. All things being equal, nothing should hold primacy. The example of tolerance, then, of the modern liberal amounts to intolerance of any reasoned position which challenges the credibility of the liberal position. Liberalism, like fascism, cannot tolerate criticism.
The Tradition-minded in the blogosphere, especially those who by necessity write in a direct (not condescending) manner, given the many strange occurrences in liturgidom (or is that liturgidumb?), i.e., the liturgical realm, run the risk of becoming more like the things they criticize due to the all too frequent repetition of the abuses and other liturgical, theological and practical malfeasances they are forced to witness in the Church and raise their voices against, especially in light of the all too deafening silence when there should be a near 100% chorus of the faithful standing up for the Mass, the Faith and what-have-you. It is no easy task maintaining a witness of truth and retaining joy in the face of ubiquitous dissent and the many careless acts committed against our Lord Jesus Christ in the sacred Liturgy. But joyful and zealous they must remain for the sake of the brethren who, not realizing the pablum or hidden poisons they are being fed by disingenuous priests, prelates and laity who care nought for the truth as revealed by Christ and conserved by His Church, necessarily rely on the word of truth filtering into parishes to purify understanding of liturgical nonsense and bad theology.

The Rad Trad

The traditionalist, unlike the Tradition-minded Catholic, demonstrates a tendency to hunker down and demonize anything that apparently departs from historical precedent, often failing to appreciate distinctions between practices which preserve the teaching of Christ and those practices or customs which are spiritually beneficial but that may change from time to time in order to better serve the believer's spiritual life (e.g., the number of times one should fast). One would be wrong to say that all traditionalists are misguided people who cannot bear any change. No, the traditionalist fails when he admits into his thinking that his selective reading of Tradition has placed him above the Magisterium of the Church, which puts him dangerously close to the other side of the ecclesiastical bridge, i.e., outside the Church. The SSPX comes to mind.

In that group, the SSPX, we acknowledge many laudable attributes. Sadly, however, we also see in such groups the consequences of a tyranny of an alter-magisterium not unlike that demonstrated by liberals which concentrates opinion around an imagined history and which reserves to itself the title of fidei defensor. Their "authority" clouds judgement and hobbles believers' response to the Holy Spirit Who, being the Spirit of unity Who acts through the visible symbol of unity, that is, the Bishop of Rome, traditionalists, sometimes referred to as "rad traddies" (i.e., radical traditionalists), confirm the breach in their thinking by refusing to accept the legitimacy, for example, of the Second Vatican Council and the legitimate authority of popes who sustain the legitimacy of said Council.

The Lib

The liberal, very much like the traddy or rad-traddy, appropriates authority properly belonging to the Church, specifically the Holy Father. The liberal has very little respect for authority other than his own. The liberal dispenses with Tradition even while proclaiming that his own objectionable opinions are entirely consistent with Tradition. The inversion of reason which admits such contradictions as we have seen articulated at the Synod on Marriage and the Family—i.e., the understanding that practice can be changed but not the doctrine(s concerning, e.g., the reception of Holy Communion or its prohibition)—is, for example, a fairly clear manifestation of the consequences of slippery thinking. In those series of Synod episodes, sociology replaced theology as the starting point. Thanks be to God, most of the Synod Fathers saw and rejected the proposals of the liberals for the threat to reason and Tradition that the proposals represented.

Modern liberalism is a wholesale abandonment of reason and is, practically speaking, little different than fascism. The fascist cannot tolerate any challenge to his or her mental construct which may be best described by the following saying:
There are no absolutes.
The obvious contradiction, i.e., that the statement speaks of an absolute, is lost on far too many people.

If the abuse of human rights commissions and the courts by liberals is any indication, one can point to such abuses as a confirmation that the liberal mindset manifests zero tolerance for any argument which challenges the supremacy of the liberal position which is, to the denigration of responsible dialogue, an ever shifting sand of ideologies that defend themselves by imposing feelings, not facts. The orbit of the liberal sun takes it around the head of every liberal. In the present time, the danger to inalienable rights comes from the liberal project. In other words:
There are no absolutes except those included in the liberal-fascist list of acceptable thoughts and practices.
The Tradition-minded possess the very powerful and practical insight which, after societies have slid down the slippery slope of relativism into an abyss of spiritual death which manifests as psychological, philosophical/moral, physical health and economic ruin, can restore health to societies. What is that insight? It is none other than the hope, and joy, faith and love of the Gospel manifest in and through the Holy Eucharist.

The world and those allied to it—the world of despair, envy, strife and exploitation—will never understand how the Eucharist reclaims civilizations from the uncivilized because they do not understand the Cross. The Tradition-minded understand the Mass is the one Sacrifice of Calvary. They know the story which holds the salvation of all, the rescue of all from the tyranny of sin. They know the story and share the story and defend the Mass which is the story (the reality!) made present. Past, present and future converge upon the altar amidst the celebration of Holy Mass. The reality of the Cross becomes present. Jesus—Body, Blood, Soul and Divinity—becomes present.
For the message about the cross is foolishness to those who are perishing, but to us who are being saved it is the power of God.—1 Corinthians 1:18


Neue Statistiken dokumentieren Ausmaß der Porno-Seuche [Mathias von Gersdorff]

Foto: Charmanderfiree Commons Lizenz CC BY-SA 3.0 Wikimedia Eine der größten Internetseiten für Pornographie, Pornhub, hat ihre Nutzerstatistiken veröffentlicht. Sie zeigen das Ausmaß der sich seuchenhaft ausbreitenden Pornographie dank des Internets.  Einige Zahlen aus dem Jahr 2015 (entnommen aus Lifesitenews, um nicht auf die Quelle zu verlinken), die einem den Atem verschlagen:


Hedonism [RSS]

Philosophical hedonists think that in the final analysis, the good is nothing but what we desire, and the only thing we actually desire is pleasure.   Did you think you desired love, knowledge, meaning, friendship, or friendship with God?  No, you only desire the pleasure of those things.

Most of my students find this argument irresistible.

They have all seen movies like The Matrix, so to provoke them to look deeper, I used to pose this puzzle:  “Suppose someone invented a system of illusions you could be plugged into, with sights, sounds, sensations, and memories so photo-perfect that you thought you loved real people, you thought life was meaningful, you thought you were enjoying friendship with God – in fact, whatever you want -- but actually all these impressions were being fed into you by electronics.  The inventor offers to plug you into his device for the rest of your life.  Do you accept the offer?”

Over the years, the number responding “No, it wouldn’t be real” has declined, and the number responding “Sure!  What’s real anyway?” has increased.

So I’ve upped the ante.  I’ve dropped the distraction of virtual reality.  Now I say, “Suppose a surgeon offers to strap you onto a gurney and implant a tiny electrode implanted into the pleasure center of your brain.  You will stay on the gurney forever, but with just a few microvolts of carefully monitored current, you will experience the greatest possible pleasure, and a glucose drip will keep you alive so it goes on and on until you die of old age.  You won’t think you are loving someone.  You won’t ask whether anything has meaning.  You won’t think you enjoy friendship with God.  The only thing you will be aware of is all that pleasure.  Now do you accept the offer?”

Fewer answer “Yes” than before.  But you’d be surprised by how many still do.

All sorts of philosophical fallacies are wound up in that reply, for every pleasure implies a good different than itself – the pleasure is the experience of repose in that particular good.  Hallucinating pleasure is not the same as experiencing it, any more than hallucinating a cat is the same as seeing it.  In one case, the cat isn’t there; in the other case, the good isn’t.

Yet I can’t help but think that the problem is not just an error in reasoning.  What kind of society have we made, that comfortably brought-up young people can prefer death-in-life to life?


Marie-Josèphe de Saxe [Tea at Trianon]

Marie-Josèphe de Saxe, Dauphine of France, with her eldest son the Duc de Burgogne, who died at age nine.
Marie-Josèphe de Saxe, Dauphine of France, wife of Louis the Dauphin, was the mother of Louis XVI. It is said that her little grandson, the tragic Louis XVII, resembled her a great deal, as can be seen in the portrait below. It gives further lie to the ridiculous rumor that Count Axel von Fersen fathered Louis-Charles (Louis XVII).
Daughter of the Elector of Saxony, Marie-Josèphe was destined to become the mother of three Kings of France. Two of her children were eventually to die on the guillotine while another became a Venerable of the Church. In the meantime, she lost many babies and children to early deaths, including the beloved Duc de Burgogne, whose death from tuberculosis was to haunt Louis XVI, as well as possibly infecting him with the same disease.

At a time when the French court was ruled by Madame de Pompadour and influenced by the philosophes, there came into the midst of such a loose and free-thinking environment a devout Catholic princess. Marie-Josèphe faced enormous challenges. In addition to a husband who was still in love with his first wife, Maria-Theresa of Spain who had recently died, the new Dauphine had to contend with the anti-religious element at Versailles, which prevailed in spite of the pious queen and princesses.

Little by little Marie-Josèphe won the love and respect of her husband as they worked together to educate their surviving children, especially in solid religious formation, while striving to maintain the Catholic faith at the court in spite of the blatant immorality of Louis XV. With her restrained yet kindly and dignified manner, the Dauphine became greatly loved; it is said she even got on well with Madame de Pompadour.

Marie-Josèphe cared for her husband in his fatal illness and followed him to the grave two years later in 1767. It was a great tragedy for her five remaining children, for whom the strong influence of such a mother was irreplaceable. Although Marie-Josèphe was against the Austrian alliance, her death before the arrival of Marie-Antoinette of Austria in France was unfortunate, since she of all people would have been most fitted to give loving guidance to her vivacious daughter-in-law, adrift in a foreign court.


So now there really is a gay lobby in the Vatican? [Abbey Roads]

Because Maradiaga has confirmed it in an interview?

Highly suspect and harshly criticized in the past, 'the loquacious Maradiaga' - as Fr. Z called him - may be emerging as a real Catholic in the eyes of the Pope Franics-critics.  

No surprise here - Cardinal Maradiaga supports Catholic teaching on homosexuality and marriage: 
The Honduran Archbishop of Tegucigalpa, who coordinates the Council of Nine cardinals advising the Pope on reform of the Roman Curia and Church governance, was responding to a question from a Honduran newspaper reporter who asked him whether there had been “an attempt to infiltrate the gay community in the Vatican, or a moment when that had actually happened?” 
Cardinal Rodriguez replied: “Not only that, also the Pope has said there is even a ‘lobby’ in this sense. Little by little the Pope is trying to purify it.” He added: “One can understand them [members of the lobby] and there is pastoral legislation to attend to them, but what is wrong cannot be truth.”
Also in the interview with Heraldo de Honduras, Cardinal Rodriguez was asked whether the Pope would ever support same-sex “marriage.”

“No,” he replied. “We must understand that there are things that can be reformed and others cannot. The natural law cannot be reformed. We can see how God has designed the human body, the body of the man and the body of a woman to complement each other and transmit life. The contrary is not the plan of creation. There are things that cannot be changed." 
The cardinal also tried to reassure readers there would be “no major” changes to doctrine as part of the Pope's reforms. “We should not expect there will be major reforms in the doctrine of the Church. The reform is the organization of the curia.” - NCRegister

Now I wonder if these people will stop with their conspiracy theories and accusations that Pope Francis is a heretic and has surrounded himself with men who seek to undermine the Church?

Perhaps apologies are forthcoming?

All right - I'll stop.

I have to quit obsessing over and responding to these blogster stories.

The new me?

Paolo and Francesca in Hell [Tea at Trianon]

Ever since I saw Rodin's sculpture "The Gates of Hell" while in college I was deeply moved by the story of Francesca da Rimini, whom Dante describes in his Inferno. Her story holds a strong moral lesson on many levels. From Crisis:
The story of Paola and Francesca, forced to reenact their lustful gaze forever in Hell, can teach us several things about the reality of porn. First, just like the whirlwind in which the carnal find themselves, lust and pornography can excite, but cannot satisfy. Turning to pornography for sexual satisfaction is like a man who turns to salt water to satiate his burning thirst. It doesn’t work. Second, notice that Dante calls Paolo and Francesca “weary souls,” an apt description for the ones who have traded in reason for unbridled passion that neither satisfies nor consoles. Third, the whirlwind wherein Francesca and Paolo are forced to eternally look upon the shade of the other’s body serves as a mutual reminder of their sin. When we sin sexually with another, we are not loving the other, we are using the other. This is particularly evident in pornography where the user treats the other, not as a person with intrinsic dignity, or even with a mind of her own, but as a sex object. (Read more.)


Redeeming Time [Tea at Trianon]

From The Catholic Thing:

God created the world in time. He originally intended time as a gift: the necessary condition for man to subdue the earth, to be fruitful and multiply, to enjoy and to grow in communion with God. But because of sin we now experience time as a burden, a task, even a threat. Like the rest of the fallen world, time rebels against us. It eludes and overwhelms us. It brings about erosion, decay, and disintegration. And it has become also the occasion for the evil one to work his mischief. Therefore, Paul observes that the days are evil.

For that reason also he speaks about redeeming time: literally, reclaiming it. The brief phrase is filled with meaning. The entrance of God into time means that the passing of the hours, days, and years no longer brings just continuous disintegration and decay. Since Christ embraces all time, it can now be redeemed – reclaimed. Like the rest of creation, time is both wounded by sin and able to be reclaimed by us, the children of God.

Or rather, we participate in redeeming it, reclaiming it for Christ. This means not doing with time whatever we want – not for accumulating money, power, pleasures – but reclaiming it for God and his glory. A pagan poet said, Carpe diem – Seize the day! But only the Christian can really do so – reclaiming time, taking it in hand, consecrating it to God.

With God entering time in the Person of Christ, the gift of time has been restored to us. It now affords us opportunity for repentance. Put starkly, there is still time for us to turn to Him. Saint Paul exhorts us in this as well: Behold, now is the acceptable time; behold, now is the day of salvation. (2 Cor 6:2) We should use the time we have to turn away from sin. (Read more.)


The Desert Spirituality of Motherhood [Ethika Politika]


When St. Anthony of the Desert went out to the Egyptian wilderness to be alone with God, he probably did not suspect that he was setting an example for mothers. He gave up the comforts of society in order to face himself and let God purify him. This is not so different from the path of mothers and families and, by extension, all people striving to live in accord with truth and God. Interpreting St. Anthony’s desert hermitage spirituality for today, in his book The Prayer of the Heart, Henri Nouwen quotes the twentieth-century Catholic mystic Thomas Merton: “Society … was regarded [by the Desert Fathers] as a shipwreck from which each single individual man had to swim for his life. … These were men who believed that to let oneself drift along, passively accepting the tenets and values of what they knew as society, was purely and simply a disaster.” In fleeing to the desert’s harshness and living alone, Anthony and his followers strove to give up everything and seek Christ. But the desert was no reprieve from trials. On the contrary, Nouwen explains that Anthony “had to face his enemies—anger and greed—head-on and let himself be totally transformed into a new being. His old, false self had to die and a new self had to be born. For this Anthony withdrew into the complete solitude of the desert. Solitude is the furnace of transformation.” The result was to come out a new man, a true man: holier, happier, humbler, and fully reliant on God. Family, the Height of Foolishness Real commitment to family seems almost as crazy as becoming a desert hermit. To leave the workforce, or even to limit the work you take, for the sake of parenting seems the height of foolishness. We give up financial independence, prestige, consistently clean clothes, and several degrees of self-determination as our schedule and daily life for many years will be dictated by the needs of young children. And for what good? To be at the service of life, the greatest earthly good, and also at the service of the Lord, who created life. To bind oneself to a family, to a spouse and to children is really like a religious vow: It gives up a great many goods in order to grow in the good of commitment and formation. To do it well, it will take everything we have, and then some. It will lead us into the desert of our souls and present the furnace of solitude. It is here that we will stare darkness in the face and fall back onto Christ. Despite the beauty and worth of the actual children, being a mom (or a dad) is hard. It is a non-stop path of ever-growing, ever-changing self-giving. There is always one more snack to get, one more counter to wipe and then the kids develop and have new, different needs. There is the ever-lingering sense that we are not doing enough: not enough for the children, not enough for our husbands, and not enough for ourselves. But the false self who feels buried, who thinks we are above drool and spilled cereal, who wants everything to be easy, without sacrifice, and who wants accomplishments for accomplishments’ sake must die in the desert of motherhood. For me, this desert appears very clearly at bedtime. The false self feels too busy and too important to waste time being still and silent. When I lay down with my children at bedtime, I must be silent. I must not be moved by the begging to get up nor respond to the calls for more drinks. Most importantly, I must squelch that monstrous little voice of my thoughts that starts to get louder as I lie there: “You have to do the dishes,” it says. “There is so much laundry. What about your work-out and your writing time? Those are almost gone. And your husband is waiting for you; he never gets to see you,” the voice wails. Then, if it takes hold, it gets stronger: “Get up now. Yell that those pesky kids and get up and get something done!” The anger starts to bubble and boil. Boiling Anger “What else is anger but the impulsive response to the experience of being deprived?” Nouwen asks. The perception of deprivation I sometimes experience during bedtime can become almost too much to take. But this perception is always misleading. It is the false self; It is a failure to recognize the goods before me, a wretched sense of entitlement and self-importance, and a failure to be present and silent with them, with myself and with God. I don’t think it is presumptuous of me to posit that these nasty voices are not so different from the forces St. Anthony battled in his hermitage. “In solitude we realize that nothing human is alien to us, that the roots of all conflict, war, injustice, cruelty, hatred, jealousy, and envy are deeply anchored in our own heart.” In the time of silence and solitude, we face this within ourselves. And the answer is the same in both cases: compassion and silence. By recognizing the magnitude of the horror within ourselves, we find compassion for others and forgiveness. In simply being silent with God, we learn that God is enough and that so are we. It can be very difficult to feel like enough during the desert purgation of bedtime. Despite the immense value of caring for another human life, the great good of motherhood is all too often taken for granted precisely because of its commonness. Because of that, we can lose sight of the holiness of our vocation. Our call is found precisely in the patience, silence, and solitude of life with children. Despite the non-worldliness of it, it is nevertheless a call to tremendous individual and spiritual development. Ours is a growth within community, within bonds, a growth that connects with others, especially our husbands and children. It is a mutual growth that builds unity with all life and all goodness; it is not the growth of a Nietzschean ubermensch who grows in domination at the expense of our fellow creatures. The family is a place we will inevitably confront the most profound human mysteries: the generation of new life, of foundational education, cultural understanding, and the deepest attachment of our most-formative relationships: those between parent and child and husband and wife. It is rightly called a vocation. Like the desert or the monastery, it is a place where we will encounter God, if we let it be. Stephanie Pacheco is a convert and freelance writer who holds an MA in Theological Studies from Christendom College. Her work has appeared in America magazine, Crisis magazine, and in the Truth and Charity Forum of HLI; she blogs at “The Desert Spirituality of Motherhood” is a revised version of an article that appeared on the Truth and Charity Forum.

The post The Desert Spirituality of Motherhood appeared first on Ethika Politika.


Do You Hear the People Sing? La Manif Pour Tous [Steeple and State]


The battle between the proponents of gay-rights and the proponents of traditional marriage has been a steady but undeniable rout over the last ten years, culminating in the disastrous and Constitutionally damaging Obergefell v. Hodges decision at the United States Supreme Court. While many think this is the end of the fight, in reality, if Christians are going to maintain their freedom of religion, this is the crucial turning point. The gay community continues to gain traction for the mantra: equal love. Conservatives stand around and bitterly shake their heads as these sorties and skirmishes finish badly for Team Traditional, but why should this be any surprise? When we mount no resistance, our loss is assured. The summer of 2012 saw the release of the Hollywood blockbuster Les Misérables. Critically acclaimed, wreathed in Oscar laurels, we hummed along all year to the inspiring songs of French freedom fighters. Interestingly enough, 4,000 miles across the Atlantic the modern French were rising again to fight an assault on their values. Do you hear the people sing, singing the song of angry men? It was the birth of La Manif Pour Tous.

It all began in May of 2012, when French voters tapped Francois Hollande, a radically socialist politician, to replace Nicolas Sarkozy. For many conservatives in America, this was yet more proof of mediocrity from a nation many had written off long ago as lost to liberal socialism—but the French people had a surprise in store for everyone.

In June of 2012, just two months after his election, Hollande’s administration announced he would see one campaign promise through quickly: early in 2013 marriage and the right to adopt would be granted to same-sex couples. The response from the French people was remarkable. Across the country conservative families, horrified at the massive shift about to be brought about in their society, began to band together. Their request was reasonable: they wanted a referendum put to the people so that a fair vote could be taken on such a major issue. Hollande was deaf to his citizens’ requests, and from the anger of the marginalized, La Manif Pour Tous (Protest Against Marriage for All) was born.

On November 17, 2012 over 70,000 men women and children gathered in Paris for a regional march against Hollande and his proposal to legalize gay-rights. The LMPT banners were pink and blue with white silhouetted families. They chanted for a child’s right to have a mother and a father, they asked to be heard at the polls.

By the national demonstration on January 13, 2013 close to a million people converged on Paris supporting traditional marriage and the rights of children. Police falsely reported that the Manif gathered only 350,000, but these numbers were ludicrous when analyzed next to the live cams of Paris’s massive Grands Boulevards. Packed with people, the crowds surged by in seemingly unending streams. “There was not enough room for us in Paris’s streets,” a young French man remarked recalling the demonstration.


Having voiced their anger, the French weren’t done. Demonstrations were organized all over France. The movement was chock full of France’s youth, college students, and young professionals; people fighting for their families and their futures. The unrest across the country was palatable, but nowhere was it more volatile than in the capital where violence began to break out between protesters and the riot-police. Although, the movement began as a peaceful one, the mixture of high emotions and aggressive crowd controllers disintegrated into chaos. Students across Paris participated in “flash demonstrations” and the police responded harshly. Fully armored CRS (French National Police) threw glass bottles at the hordes of unprotected French students, only stoking the resentment and energy of the movement. Pepper spray and beatings in the streets were common, and the riot police undertook mass arrests. In the YouTube videos that spread across the world, the streets of the City of Lights resembled a third world war zone.

What in the world was going on? It is an old stereotype that the French love nothing better than to march against something–anything. Since the students took the streets in ’68, the French people have famously relished the opportunity to voice their disgust through public demonstration. But this movement wasn’t made up of political agitators; they weren’t bored students or any single demographic. They were a diverse group drawn from all echelons of society and walks of life, united in their anger that they had no voice.


Staring down the barrel at defeat as the bill approving gay marriage and the right to adoption moved through the process, the French again marched in Paris on March 24th, and again were close to a million strong. A movement that everyone expected to flicker and fade any moment continued to draw and to build.

Stubborn to the end, Hollande signed the bill legalizing gay-marriage on May 18 2013, but despite this defeat the march in Paris on May 26th still drew a crowd of well over 700,000 people! One young French woman arrested during the demonstration was held overnight. When she was released, the CRS officer warned her that although she may have found their treatment harsh, the police had authority to fire on the crowd the day of the protest. Thankfully, none of the riot police exercised this prerogative, or the situation in Paris may have ended very bloodily indeed.


This is where any political analyst would have predicted the French conservatives would fizzle. They put on a good show, they fought harder than anyone could have imagined, and they lost. You would think they would go home. They did not.

To combat the violence that was becoming inevitable, the students organized under the banner Les Veilleurs. They organized peaceful demonstrations of students seated and listening to French poetry, philosophy, and speeches. They were silent witnesses to the government muffling their values and their rights.

We should all be proud of the French—proud of them and rebuked by them. The French created an incredible movement. They answered the lie that people who oppose homosexual marriage are a slim margin of bigots. And as they stood up to be counted, they brought their friends, their family, their neighbors, and their work colleagues. They faced inevitable defeat and they engaged in battle despite the odds.

The French don’t oppose gay-rights because they hate gay people. They oppose it because they see the truth that many of us see, and they had the courage to fight for their convictions. Marriage is not something we can redefine. Men can love men, women can love women, but a marriage is a man and woman coming together to form a family. The nation of Vive la Difference understands the rich complementarity of the sexes, and that children have an absolute right to be raised in a family with a mother and a father.

No one is persecuting the gay-community. It is not illegal to be gay or to have a gay relationship. Private citizens may enter into any number of civil contracts. Gay relationships are not under assault today; traditional marriage is under assault. People who reasonably argue that the definition of marriage is immutable are labeled homophobic, quickly silenced, and shunned. This is quite the opposite of freedom of speech and freedom of religion.

What spurs the French to such activism against such odds? What fire compels these people to fight with such determination? Perhaps it is partly their temperament, but perhaps it is their proximity to history. German occupation is still a relatively close memory for the World War II generation. The French police rounded up their own Jewish citizens throughout Paris and imprisoned them under terrible conditions in the Vélodrome, before they were shipped by train to German concentration camps. Although, rarely discussed, these horrors of the Vichy regime still smart on the French conscience. They also stand as uncomfortably recent reminders of the extremes of a government that doesn’t value a portion of society.

The French lost the battle against gay-marriage, but they have not been cowed, nor have they retreated. They are still organized and marching for their children, against gay-adoption, against surrogate motherhood, against the advance of true intolerance. In December of 2014, when most Americans wouldn’t dream of political activity clouding the holiday season, the French marched under the banner “Angry Families.” They marched in Paris, in Versailles, Bordeaux and Blois, Montpellier, Lille, and Lyon. They understand the stakes in this culture war and they are not giving up.


The heartbreak in this story of courage is that the French system does not allow for the vast ability to self-govern that the American Founding Fathers’ granted this young nation. The American people have the power to effect change on every level of our government, if we have the will. Do you hear the people sing, singing the song of angry men? We have a voice still, why do we not fight? The French people are trapped in a system they cannot as easily change, but they have given us a powerful witness and a warning. Perhaps, with their tenacity as a template, we can launch the only possible successful offense against the gay-rights movement. We can mix the spirit of the French with the freedom of the United States, and together we can turn this tide.

Photos:,, Joao Dias, and Sergeklk. All via Creative Commons License 


I've Gotta' Admit This is an Awesome Endorsement Video [Creative Minority Report]

The long awaited endorsement from Phil Robertson, patriarch of the Duck Dynasty crew, goes to Ted Cruz.

I'll admit that I don't believe America can pull out of the graveyard spiral it's so enjoying right now but Ted Cruz at least seems to be willing to pull up on the controls.


In a video showing the two duck hunting together, Robertson lists the qualities he's looking for in a presidential candidate, demanding that his choice be willing to "kill a duck and put him in a pot and make ‘em a good duck gumbo."

"Ted Cruz is my man. He fits the bill. He’s godly, he loves us, he’s the man for the job, and he will go duck hunting," Robertson said in the videopromoted on the Cruz campaign's website.



A Taxonomy [The TOF Spot]

h/t Gary Armitage


Like a Boss: Honduran Cardinal Confirms Sodolobby in Vatican [The Eponymous Flower]

Update: on second glance, this is starting to look suspiciously like an admission of guilt without any remediation.

Edit: as if to lend a further boost of credence to Voris' recent charge. Knowing is half the battle!

[NCR] Cardinal Oscar Rodriguez Maradiaga has confirmed the presence of a homosexual “lobby” in the Vatican and revealed that Pope Francis is trying “little by little to purify it.”

The Honduran Archbishop of Tegucigalpa, who coordinates the Council of Nine cardinals advising the Pope on reform of the Roman Curia and Church governance, was responding to a question from a Honduran newspaper reporter who asked him whether there had been “an attempt to infiltrate the gay community in the Vatican, or a moment when that had actually happened?”

Cardinal Rodriguez replied: “Not only that, also the Pope has said there is even a ‘lobby’ in this sense. Little by little the Pope is trying to purify it.” He added: “One can understand them [members of the lobby] and there is pastoral legislation to attend to them, but what is wrong cannot be truth.”


What the Book of Proverbs Has to Say About the Current Age [Community in Mission]

ProverbsIn the Divine Office, we are currently reading from the Wisdom Tradition. Thus our daily fare consists of passages from Sirach, Wisdom, Proverbs, etc. Praise the Lord. They have a lot to say about the times in which we live.

I’d like to review a few of the sayings in the Book of Proverbs. But before doing so, I’d like to explain the use of the word fool in the Wisdom Tradition (as contrasted with the wise one). Without a richer understanding of the term fool it is possible to think it a mere ad hominem attack, or a dismissal of opponents through name-calling and ridicule.

To the modern mind, the term fool is demeaning and hurtful. In modern usage, fool tends to refer to one who is irredeemably stupid, buffoonish, and lacking in common sense—one who is “dumb as a rock.”

However, when the Scriptures use the term fool it is set forth in contrast with the wise and wisdom. Its meaning is more nuanced, more descriptive of a rejection of wisdom rather than merely pejorative. There are several Hebrew words in Proverbs and other places that are translated as fool. Let’s look at two of those.

The first Hebrew root of fool is אֱוִיל (ewil), which means to be perverse and lacking in reflection. In context, the word refers to

  1. those who despise wisdom and discipline (Proverbs 1:7, Proverbs 15:5);
  2. those who mock at guilt (Proverbs 14:9);
  3. those who are quarrelsome (Proverbs 20:3);
  4. those who are licentious (Proverbs 7:22); or
  5. those for whom attempted instruction is folly (Proverbs 16:22, Proverbs 27:22, Jeremiah 4:22, Job 5:2-3, Isaiah 19:11, Psalm 107:17).

Another Hebrew root is כְּסִיל (kasal), which means a stupid fellow, a dullard. In context, the word refers to

  1. those who hate knowledge (Proverbs 1:22);
  2. those who delight not in understanding (Proverbs 18:2);
  3. those who love to do mischief (Proverbs 10:23, Proverbs 12:23, Proverbs 15:2); or
  4. those who feed on the mischief of others (Proverbs 15:14).

Thus we are not dealing with someone who is stupid, but rather one whose stance is against what is reasonable, holy, orderly, and wise. Such people may in fact have intelligence and wide knowledge about many things of the world. But their stance is against Godly Wisdom; they are set against what matters to God; they are rooted in the passing things of the world that are of darkness. They base their lives on transitory and frivolous things, which cannot be the true basis for salvation.

The Latin Vulgate often uses the word insipiens (unwise) to refer to foolishness, i.e., the setting of oneself against wisdom.

Hence simply thinking that fool means stupid fails to grasp the nuance of what is said. And while it is not a flattering portrayal, neither is it mere name-calling. Rather, it is descriptive. Fools are those who set themselves against wisdom; they are not merely stupid people.

With that in mind, let’s examine a few of the proverbs that we are reading at this time in the Divine Office. They help to explain what God’s Church and those who seek wisdom are up against. The maxims are all from the 10th chapter of Proverbs. My comments are presented in red text.

  1. Blessings are for the head of the just, but a rod for the back of the fool (Prov 10:6).

God’s law is a great blessing to those who love wisdom. His commandments are not prison walls; they are defending walls. His commands do not limit freedom so much as they frame it within necessary limits.

But to the foolish, to those who hate and despise God’s wisdom, to those who hate discipline and reasonable limits; God’s law—any authority that tries to limit behavior—is hateful and punishing, like a rod on the back.

And thus many today are not simply indifferent to God’s wisdom as proclaimed by the Church and Scripture, they are openly hostile to it!

It is like the reaction of someone who has been sitting in a very dark room and is suddenly overwhelmed by bright light: he cries out in protest. He despises the light and protests its presence as something hateful and hurtful. Jesus lamented, And this is the judgment: the light has come into the world, and people loved the darkness rather than the light because their deeds were evil (Jn 3:19).

To those who despise God’s wisdom, it is seen not as a brilliant and beautiful light, a blessing for the mind to contemplate; rather, it feels like a punishing rod on the back.

  1. A wise man heeds commands, but a prating fool will be overthrownA path to life is his who heeds admonition, but he who disregards reproof goes astray (Proverbs 10:8, 17).

The wise man listens to instruction and strives to base his life upon it. The wise humbly accept that they do not know all things and must be taught by God.

But fools, those who hate wisdom, prattle on and on about their own opinions. They believe anything is true simply because they think it.

It is difficult to reason with them, for although they scoff at religious truth as mere “religion,” it is really they who exhibit a far more extreme version of “blind faith” than any Christian believer who sees faith and reason as compatible.

The text says that their end is destruction. Many political ideologies, errant trends, and misguided philosophies have come and gone over the years, yet the Church remains. The wisdom and the Word of the Lord endure forever.

  1. He who walks honestly walks securely, but he whose ways are crooked will fare badly (Prov 10:9).

Evil has its hour. It rises, seems glamorous to many, and is praised and paraded about as some sort of new form of liberation.

But evil cannot last, and those who practice it will fare badly. It may come in the form of addiction, disease, strife, inner conflict, or any number of resentments rooted in false hope; but those who practice it will fare badly.

Only those who walk in honesty and in the truth—time-tested truth taught by God Himself—will walk securely. They will have trials to be sure, but even these difficulties will help them to reach their goal if they follow time-tested wisdom.

  1. He who winks at a fault causes trouble, but he who frankly reproves promotes peace (Prov 10:10).

There is great pressure from many sectors today to remain silent about sin and evil. Those who do speak of sin are called judgmental and intolerant. Sadly, many Christians have succumbed to the pressure and started winking at faults. Nothing but trouble results from this. The moral cesspool of the modern age shows this.

The correction of faults, frankly and with love, is an act of charity (St. Thomas Aquinas). Error and sin bring war and division, both individually and collectively. But God’s truth, lovingly proclaimed, brings peace by insisting on what is good, right, true, and beautiful.

We live in an age that winks at evil. In other words, the world finds evil funny and often celebrates it in visual entertainment, written media, music, and other ways. The destructiveness of glamorizing evil is apparent if one simply reads a newspaper or turns on the news.

God’s law is His peace plan for this broken world of ours; it is His wisdom that will bring us peace. 

  1. A fountain of life is the mouth of the just, but the mouth of the wicked conceals violence (Proverbs 10:11).

Jesus warned that Satan and those who are evil often masquerade in sheep’s clothing, but underneath are ravenous wolves (see Mat 7:15). And hence many in our world today who despise God’s wisdom conceal their violence with euphemisms such as pro-choice, no-fault divorce, reproductive freedom, euthanasia, death with dignity, and so forth.

Despite the euphemisms and their cloak of pseudo-compassion, they ultimately peddle death and division. God’s wisdom, on the other hand, speaks to the dignity of every human life, hope, and promise of life—despite any difficulties.

  1. The just man’s recompense leads to life, the gains of the wicked, to sin (Proverbs 10: 16).

For those who are striving to be just and to follow God’s wisdom, the rewards received are to be shared generously with others. The gains of the wicked, however, lead to sins such as gluttony, greed, hoarding, and other excesses. Rather than sharing their abundance with others, they spend it on the flesh and they place their trust and reliance on the creature rather than on the Creator, who is blessed forever, amen.

  1. Where words are many, sin is not wanting; but he who restrains his lips does well (Proverbs 10:19).

In an age of non-stop communication and 24/7 news reporting, the sin of gossip is almost endlessly available. Discretion is lost. Almost everyone thinks he has a right to know everything about everyone else. The people’s “right to know,” seems to have no limits.

And in our age of many words and many media (visual, verbal, musical, etc.), sin is not wanting on account of this. We talk endlessly about other people’s business and often ignore our own issues. Why stay in our own lane when we can “tune in at 11” or go to a scandal sheet or website for the latest gossip?

Rare indeed are those who “restrain their lips” and cover their eyes and ears to what is sinful or merely intriguing.

  1. Crime is the entertainment of the fool; so is wisdom for the man of sense (Proverbs 10:23).

Our culture celebrates the sins of others as entertainment. On television, in the cinema, and in many other forms of communication, fornication, adultery, and other kinds of sexual misconduct are normalized—even celebrated.

It is the same with violence. Most adventure movies today glamorize the use of violence to solve problems. An injustice occurs and the “hero” (after 90 minutes of killing people, breaking things, and blowing up buildings) has a final showdown with the unambiguously evil enemy, killing him and walking away with the girl on his arm and the burning city in the background—roll credits.

We also glorify mobsters and others who participate in crime and violence.

Some will argue that movies should reflect life. That is fine, but most people are not killing other people, burning cities, crashing cars, or blowing up buildings. Most people are not Mafiosi. Sadly, however, there is a lot of fornication, adultery, and participation in homosexual acts. But in real life these actions are not without consequence, as movies depict.

Where are the movies that depict wisdom, beauty, love, truth, chastity, and strong families? They are out there, but too often are eclipsed at the box office by the far more numerous ones that celebrate crime, violence, dysfunction, and sinfulness.

  1. When the tempest passes, the wicked man is no more; but the just man is established forever (Proverbs 10:25).

The Church alone is indefectible, by the promise of Jesus Christ. Although evil movements, political forces, sinful regimes, etc. rise and boast of their power, they eventually fall. As noted, the Church has seen empires rise and fall and philosophies come and go. Evil men have threatened the Church with destruction for thousands of years now, but we have read the funeral rites over every one of them.

The truth will out. Evil will not remain; it cannot last. Christ has already won the victory.

The foolish keep resisting; they laugh at God’s wisdom, dismiss the Scriptures, and ridicule the Church. But when they are gone, we will still be here proclaiming Christ crucified, gloriously resurrected, and ascended to glory.

Those who mock this resist the consistent message of history. Jesus is Lord, and though He permits His enemies time to repent, their days are ultimately numbered—evil cannot last.

These are just a few proverbs that speak to our times and help us to decode what God has to say of many modern trends.

Here’s a video with some other sayings. In posting this I do not mean to affirm every saying presented, but some of them do make good sense!

The post What the Book of Proverbs Has to Say About the Current Age appeared first on Community in Mission.


Should I be fractured by your lack of devotion? [Semiduplex]

We have read at Rorate Caeli—and elsewhere, we think—that the next Synod of Bishops is to take up the question of married Latin-rite clergy. (Among other questions.) Rorate tells us that Sandro Magister reports that a dearth of priests in some parts of South America, and Germany’s age-old obsession with innovation in the direction of, say, the liberal Lutherans, will be the thin end (thin ends?) of the wedge this time. But of course.

And Fr. John Hunwicke tells us what’s really at issue here:

Be in no doubt: the call for Married Priests is but a surrogate and a tactical preliminary for the real battle: the struggle for the admission of women to Holy Order.

Women Priests; and Abortion; and Dissolution of the bonds between Sexuality, Matrimony and Fertility; are the unholy and inglorious Triad with which the Enemy at this particular historical moment plots the de radicibus destruction of the whole state of Christ’s Church militant here in Earth. People who can’t see that are a major part of the problem.

Believe me, I know. I’ve spent most of my life as an Anglican; and we refugees from Old Mother Damnable know exactly how these things are managed. The tools include Gradualism (give people time to get used to the idea: if you spring things on them too abruptly they might discover that they have principles). And Dialogue (“We just want our voices, our experiences to be heard; why can’t we all just talk?”). 

At the heart of it is getting the whole jigsaw complete except for just that one last piece … which now so easily and so naturally slips into its allotted slot.

(Emphasis and colors in original.) The problem, of course, with this plan is Ordinatio sacerdotalis, which has generally been seen as an infallible pronouncement. But have no fear: the infallibility of Ordinatio sacerdotalis, as Cardinal Ratzinger pointed out in his doctrinal commentary on the Profession of Faith required by Ad tuendam Fidem, stems from the fact that the limitation of ordination to men has been set forth infallibly by the Church’s ordinary and universal Magisterium, not an exercise of the pope’s extraordinary Magisterium (as governed by Pastor aeternus). Ah, they’ll say, John Paul never proclaimed it as a dogma! Even Ratzinger said so! It’s up for debate!

This, of course, is in keeping with what Raymond Cardinal Burke has identified, correctly, as part of the obliteration of John Paul’s pontificate. Remember that the tendentious misquotation (or partial quotation) of John Paul’s Familiaris consortio is one of the key pillars of the Kasperites’ argument. In a recent interview with The Wanderer, Cardinal Burke observed:

I was truly disheartened that the final report stopped short of presenting the full teaching of Familiaris Consortio in the matter. First of all, the truth as presented by St. John Paul II in Familiaris Consortio was misrepresented in the Synod’s document as was the truth as illustrated and underlined in the Pontifical Council’s document. That in itself discouraged me very much, especially in consideration of the fact that it was done at the level of a Synod of Bishops.

At the same time, I was also disturbed because I knew this would be used by individuals like Fr. Spadaro and others to say that the Church has changed her teaching in this regard, which, in fact, is simply not true.

I really believe that the whole teaching in Familiaris Consortio should have been addressed through the final document of the Synod. During my experience of the 2014 Extraordinary Synod of Bishops, it was as if Pope John Paul II never existed. If one studies the Synod’s final document, the richness of the magisterial teaching of Familiaris Consortio, which is such a beautiful document, is not there.

(Emphasis and some formatting supplied.) And, really, that seems to be what the last few years have been—a forgetting, one way or another, of John Paul’s pontificate.

Obviously, John Paul’s teachings are hugely inconvenient to the progressives—especially his teachings about birth control, priestly ordination, and divorce and remarriage, to say nothing of his Rotal jurisprudence (which most progressives probably don’t know too well)—but orthodoxy usually is. The desire to obliterate John Paul’s memory, while raising him to the altars and recalling the extraordinary scenes that accompanied him wherever he went, seems to go beyond that, however.

What was it about John Paul, then, that provokes such a desire to forget him?


The last work of the pathetic and spiritually dead and now literally dead cultural icon praised by priest and prelate and L'Osservatore Romano and Father Rutler's take on it [Vox Cantoris]

Catholics must revolt against Ravasi, O'sservatore Romano and the twittering clerics for their praise of this man and the sick culture so personified by this poor soul. How dare they disgrace the Holy Church of Christ in a sycophantic, satanic and disgusting pandering for the world to think it relevant. These men are malefactors and we cannot hammer them enough for their outright idiocy.

Look at the last few days of this pathetic creature. Oh, how he could have made peace with God and become a tool for evangelization to his fans who built a false messiah of this sexual deviant and drug-poisoned mind that walked around in that ugly body. 

Father George W. Rutler's take on this is at Crisis Magazine. It's worth a read.

This, is the kind of mockery of Our Lord Jesus Christ that the clericalist Tweeters such as Ravasi, Rosica, Martin and the rest of their ilk, laud when they applaud the artistry of this deviant.

next day


13 January 2016 | by Gianfranco Ravasi

Iconic music legend was on a never ending quest to define his own spirituality

David Bowie: how the man who sold the world never stopped searching for God
Tributes to David Bowie who died on Sunday have highlighted the power of his songs, his originality and his creativity. Here a leading Roman cardinal, Gianfranco Ravasi, finds evidence also of a struggle with faith. 
My memory of David Bowie arises from an effort I made long ago to uncover his secret and implicit spirituality. This was always in the background, always a preoccupation for him. Yet few realised this when he was recording Station to Station, released in 1977. In an album that reflected his darkest years Bowie, who five years previously in one of his lyrics had entrusted salvation to aliens, dedicated himself to the Stations of the Cross.
Cardinal Gianfranco Ravasi is president of the Pontifical Council for Culture.


St. Hilary Jan 14 [Traditional Catholic Priest]

St. Hilary, born of a noble family in Aquitaine, had few equals in teaching and eloquence. Made bishop of Poitiers, he exercised his ministry in such a way as to gain the highest praise from the faithful. His vigorous campaign for the Catholic faith led to a four year exile in Phrygia. There he raised …

The post St. Hilary Jan 14 appeared first on Traditional Catholic Priest.


„Wir wenden uns leichter Meinungen zu als der Wahrheit, . . . [et nunc]

Normal 0 21 false false false DE X-NONE X-NONE - die hart und schwierig ist."

(Clemens von Alexandria)

Die Lehre der Tradition ist zwar immer dieselbe, doch deswegen ist sie nicht immer in derselben Weise ausgebildet, ausgefeilt und verfeinert. Sie erhält nach und nach im Lauf der Zeit mehr Einsichtigkeit, Klarheit und Genauigkeit, besonders dann, wenn Häresien in Erscheinung treten. Im allgemeinen hat man für jede Glaubenslehre drei Stadien zu unterscheiden: das Stadium des einfachen Glaubens, das Stadium der vollständigen Erklärung und das Zwischenstadium, wo man beginnt, vom einfachen Glauben zur theologischen Spekulation überzugehen und wo aufgrund zahlreicher Anfangsschwierigkeiten die Erklärungen oft noch weniger genau und die Ausdrucksweisen gelegentlich missverständlich sind. Diese Ausdrucksweisen lassen eine Klärung im Sinne der Rechtgläubigkeit nicht nur zu, sondern machen eine solche sogar erforderlich, wenn man die spezifischen Grundsätze berücksichtigt, die für die Auslegung der patristischen Texte gelten.

(Aus: Louis Billot. Tradition und Modernismus. 2. Kap.
Die Ursache der scheinbaren Widersprüche in den Zeugnissen der Tradition)


The Weekly Francis – 13 January 2016 [Jimmy Akin]


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Tea at Trianon XML 22:00, Thursday, 21 January 23:00, Thursday, 21 January
That The Bones You Have Crushed May Thrill XML 22:00, Thursday, 21 January 23:00, Thursday, 21 January
The American Catholic XML 22:00, Thursday, 21 January 23:00, Thursday, 21 January
The Badger Catholic XML 22:00, Thursday, 21 January 23:00, Thursday, 21 January
The Catholic Dormitory XML 22:00, Thursday, 21 January 23:00, Thursday, 21 January
The Catholic Thing XML 22:00, Thursday, 21 January 23:00, Thursday, 21 January
The City and the World XML 22:00, Thursday, 21 January 23:00, Thursday, 21 January
The Daily Register XML 22:00, Thursday, 21 January 23:00, Thursday, 21 January
The Deacon's Bench XML 22:00, Thursday, 21 January 23:00, Thursday, 21 January
The Divine Lamp XML 22:00, Thursday, 21 January 23:00, Thursday, 21 January
The Eponymous Flower XML 22:00, Thursday, 21 January 23:00, Thursday, 21 January
The hermeneutic of continuity XML 22:00, Thursday, 21 January 23:00, Thursday, 21 January
The Jesuit Post XML 22:00, Thursday, 21 January 23:00, Thursday, 21 January
The Josias XML 22:00, Thursday, 21 January 23:00, Thursday, 21 January
The Lepanto Institute XML 22:00, Thursday, 21 January 23:00, Thursday, 21 January
The Low Churchman's Guide to the Solemn High Mass XML 22:00, Thursday, 21 January 23:00, Thursday, 21 January
The Paraphasic XML 22:00, Thursday, 21 January 23:00, Thursday, 21 January
The Prosblogion XML 22:00, Thursday, 21 January 23:00, Thursday, 21 January
The Rad Trad XML 22:00, Thursday, 21 January 23:00, Thursday, 21 January
The Remnant Newspaper - The Remnant Newspaper - Remnant Articles XML 22:00, Thursday, 21 January 23:00, Thursday, 21 January
The Sacred Page XML 22:00, Thursday, 21 January 23:00, Thursday, 21 January
The Sensible Bond XML 22:00, Thursday, 21 January 23:00, Thursday, 21 January
The TOF Spot XML 22:00, Thursday, 21 January 23:00, Thursday, 21 January
Theological Flint XML 22:00, Thursday, 21 January 23:00, Thursday, 21 January
totaliter aliter XML 22:00, Thursday, 21 January 23:00, Thursday, 21 January
Traditional Catholic Priest XML 22:00, Thursday, 21 January 23:00, Thursday, 21 January
Transalpine Redemptorists at home XML 22:00, Thursday, 21 January 23:00, Thursday, 21 January
Unam Sanctam Catholicam XML 22:00, Thursday, 21 January 23:00, Thursday, 21 January
Unequally Yoked XML 22:00, Thursday, 21 January 23:00, Thursday, 21 January
Voice of the Family XML 22:00, Thursday, 21 January 23:00, Thursday, 21 January
Vox Cantoris XML 22:00, Thursday, 21 January 23:00, Thursday, 21 January
Vultus Christi XML 22:00, Thursday, 21 January 23:00, Thursday, 21 January
Whispers in the Loggia XML 22:00, Thursday, 21 January 23:00, Thursday, 21 January
ZENIT - The World Seen From Rome XML 22:00, Thursday, 21 January 23:00, Thursday, 21 January
Zippy Catholic XML 22:00, Thursday, 21 January 23:00, Thursday, 21 January
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