Yesterday I spent the day in Leominster Massachusetts birthplace of Johnny Appleseed for their annual Johnny Appleseed fair manning the WQPH 89.3 FM Queen of Perpetual Help Shirley Fitchburg booth promoting Catholic radio for people and praying decades of the rosary on the spot for people’s intentions both online and in person.

At the festival I did a few interviews for WQPH. We talked to Adam Webber of the Montachusett Interfaith Hospitality Network which provides help for homeless families.

If you want to donate to MIHN their website is here.

I also spoke to Brother Alexis who while from Fitchburg has spent the last 2 1/2 decades in Italy.

I’d also like to thank him for joining me in many of the rosary decades that I prayed for others.

ewtn-interviews-025Our next day started with breakfast at St Bernard’s monastery where Brother Christopher made our crew acquainted with the Benedictine Brew the Monastery’s coffee blend and then we were off to pick up our other pilgrims and run a few errands with our new Bus driver and headed for the EWTN studios in Irondale for our day there.

Benedictine Brew
Benedictine Brew
Benedictine Brew[/caption]

The Site of EWTN was the original location of Mother Angelica’s monastery before she built and moved to the Shrine of the most blessed sacrament in Hanceville. When we arrived Our day began with the Noon mass at the chapel (which is not televised) That is where I met Lucy who you might recognize if you watch the daily mass the short oriental lady who goes every day. It turned out her daughter lives in Fitchburg which was quite a coincidence. Several pilgrims from other groups were just as excited to meet her as the various EWTN celebs and priests and posed for a picture with her that I took for them.

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OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

We had a late lunch in the small cafeteria area for pilgrims where we met Brother Leo of the “Hey Brother Leo” book series who sat for a brief interview

also on site was Jack Williams from EWTN Radio’s morning glory and open line who would be joining us on Fr. Pacwa’s show later that evening.

this was immediately followed by an hour long talk from Fr. Miguel on God’s calling. Here is a brief excerpt:

After our talk our group was divided into two groups, one went with Fr. Leo and the other with a woman named porta who sat for an interview later on Friday:

sets on wheels
sets on wheels
I was in Porta’s group and she led us thorough the EWTN studio’s where we would be going later in the evening for Fr. Pacwa’s show. A few of us took pictures on the set while it was empty.

She also showed up Mother Angelica’s office which had become a green room for guests.

Most of the various set backgrounds were on wheels so they could be quickly switched for one show to the other. Various other set backgrounds from shows no longer on the air were stored on site.

After that section we were taken to the technical area where the various technicians were located. I asked about hackers and they said while there were occasional attacks they had no luck getting in, of course being EWTN being a religious network the wasn’t a lot of incentive for the various financial hackers to target them.

the Caption Lady
the Caption Lady

As the tour continued I fell behind to talk to various workers who had been there or decades. Many had been surprised to find themselves at EWTN but it had really been a home to them.

When the tour was over we had dinner at EWTN again in the cafeteria area. While there I spoke to the oldest pilgrim in our group.

As well as Fr. Leonard Mary who had been in Fitchburg for a pilgrimage last year who remembered me (I told you the scarf comes in handy)

after dinner we had some free time to pray the liturgy of the hours, visit the blessed sacrament or get confession before the evening’s show.

Our group was the largest of those at EWTN but there were others from Texas and a few individuals who had also come to join us in the audience live.

Two Camera men were on opposite sides to take shots one focused on Fr. Pacwa and one to focus on his guest. Additionally there was one stationary camera set to catch the pair of them. A monitor on the side wall showed us which camera was feeding live at any given time.

The audience for the show
The audience for the show
Before the Show Fr. Pacwa came out in a cowboy hat and gave us some brief instructions or the live show remind us that if we were looking at the monitor rather than the show when the engineer turned to the audience we would be looking away. He joked once the video was available on DVD or online could watch the broadcast freeze the broadcast and look at ourselves on TV to our hearts content.

The show ran an hour, the first guest was Jack Williams who I had interviewed earlier who briefly talked about EWTN radio and plugged our station.

The Primary guest was Peter Williamson who has written a series of biblical commentaries

During the first break they asked who wanted to ask questions. We raised our hands they asked us what the questions were and then had us line up to the side. When our turn would come they signaled go to the mike and Fr would call on us when he was ready.

When he called on me they he asked jokingly if I had been told the EWTN studios were in Alaska rather than alabama because of the scarf.

When the show was over it turned out there was an issue with the initial into of Jack Williams so we watched as they re-recorded Fr. Mitch’s brief into of Jack for the broadcast, made slightly more complicated by him not being there so Fr. had to make sure that he faced toward where Jack was supposed to be.

When that was done Fr. Pacwa started taking pictures with people. that went on for long while. I took advantage of that time to interview his guest Peter Williamson

When I was done the pictures continued unabated. It was as if every single person there wanted a shot but despite the long day Fr. Pacwa did have a few minutes for me.

By this time it was really late so we piled on the bus and said our goodbyes and we headed back for the night, where we at the monastery packed as Wednesday would be our last night there and the next day would start early.

p12079367_b_v9_acBy John Ruberry

Without the phenomenal box office success of The Lord of the Rings trilogy, HBO’s Game of Thrones series may not have ever launched. And without GoT’s ongoing critical and audience raves, The Last Kingdom would almost certainly never have been giving the green light by the BBC.

I just finished binge-watching the first season of The Last Kingdom, which like Game of Thrones is a television version of a series of books, in this case Bernard Cornwell’s The Saxon Stories. I might not have ever heard of the BBC series had not the ninth season of the Doctor Who reboot had been bombarded with Last Kingdom trailers. I guess that’s the point of promos.

Season two of The Last Kingdom is currently in production.

So how is it? Well, in a few words, LK is pretty good. After all, I kept watching, didn’t I?

Here’s how the series is set up–with spoilers for the most part that cover only the first half of the first episode:

The action begins in the late ninth century as Danish invaders–the word “vikings” is never used–have transformed themselves from coastal raiders into a disciplined army who have conquered each English kingdom save Wessex. The lead character is Uhtred of Bebbanburg (Alexander Dreymon), the son of a Northumberland noblemen who as a child witnesses his father fall in a battle against the invaders. After he humorously attacks a Dane, Uhtred is taken as a slave. Losing his Christian faith, Uhtred the Godless, much in the matter of white characters captured by Indians in Old West movies, seems unsure of his loyalties, but he’s determined to reclaim his family castle from his duplicitous uncle.

An adult Uhtred, after his Danish family is killed by other Danes, makes his way to Wessex where he pledges loyalty to King Alfred and joins the Saxon cause.

Attractive in a Jon Snow sort of way, Uhtred doesn’t have a vow of chastity to hamper his romantic pursuits.

Religion greatly drives the plot, The priest who baptizes the young Uhtred–twice–has also made his way to Wessex, where he serves as a counselor to Alfred. Refreshingly, the Christians in The Last Kingdom are pious, but not portrayed as foolishly pious. The only religious character treated with disdain is a Danish sorcerer.

Alfred (David Dawson), the devout king, doesn’t let his sickliness damper his resolve to save his realm and drive the Danes out of England.

Besides Alfred, other historical characters who appear in The Last Kingdom are the Danish chieftains Ubba and Guthrum, Saxons Odda the Elder, King Edmund of East Anglia, Alfred’s nephew Aethelwold, and Welsh monk Asser, the biographer of the Wessex ruler. A glaring oversight is the omission of Ivor the Boneless, the Dane whose name still perplexes historians. Ivor was the half-brother of Ubba.

The show plays homage to the legend that Alfred, asked by a woman to keep an eye on loaves of bread being baked, allows them to burn as his mind wanders to pressing matters of kingship.

The cinematography is superb although the filming of the series in Hungary, rather than England, might be the catalyst of one of LK’s noticeable shortcomings, cheap-looking wardrobes and crowns that appear to be plastic. If the series was shot in Britain, or even Northern Ireland where some of Game of Thrones is filmed, I’m sure the costume department of The Last Kingdom could have scrounged up more convincing crowns some better period clothes from a regional Shakespeare company.

John "Lee" Ruberry of the Magnificent Seven
John “Lee” Ruberry of the Magnificent Seven

If you are looking for one more Game of Thrones comparison, then I won’t let you down. While gratuitous nudity is absent from The Last Kingdom, the brief glimpses of bare flesh amid the armor and swords appear forced as if someone is screaming at the directors, “We need naked bums for better ratings!”

I’ll be back for season two, hoping for more. (More meaning better shows, not bare buttocks.) After all, the Doctor Who spinoff Torchwood didn’t hit its stride until season two and it didn’t achieve consistent greatness until The Children of Earth in season three.

John Ruberry regularly blogs at Marathon Pundit
.

Castle San Miguel
Castle San Miguel
We left the abbey heading for Shirine of the most blessed sacrament, picking up our guest house people on the way.

There is a single entrance to the site down a country road filled with farmland horses and cattle grazing calmly nearby giving no clue as to what is to be found at the end of the road.

There were very few members of the group who had been to the shrine and the Castle that sits upon it but even so it remained an imposing sight as you approach it.

When you walk into the medieval style keep this is what you see

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The Conference Room
this is the area used for conferences dining (items are catered and brought in). It also contains the rather large and very catholic gift shop full of coins, prayer cards and medals. As our catholic supply store in the Fitchburg area closed I loaded up on small bottles for holy water to be given out a few of which I filled from the taps connected to huge tanks of holy water kept in the nativity area next to the castle

For those who are not catholic be aware that all such items are just that items that can be bought and sold until blessed by a priest or deacon, once blessed they can NOT be sold either by a gift shop or by the person who had them blessed. No legit catholic gift shop will sell a blessed item.

The Courtyard
The Courtyard

We then filled into the conference room for a talk on the origins of Mother Angelica, her vocation and the Shrine of the most blessed sacrament. I set up a mic for the talk next to her podium so I caught all of her speech but in the Q & A you’ll only hear the “A” not the “Q”

When the talk was over we headed for mass at the lower chapel where Mother Angelica is buried. No photography is allowed there so naturally I have no images to show you. I was struck that not only was the Liturgy of the Eucharist celebrated Ad Orientem but communion was received kneeling at the altar rail with an altar boy holding a salver under a chin, both of which I found very appealing.

Touring the Eucharistic Center
Touring the Eucharistic Center
After mass we had some time before our tour of the John Paul II Eucharistic Center we spent some time at the grave of Mother Angelica. We pressed rosaries against her grave that the station planned to give away and prayed a rosary for the person who would be receiving it.

A bit later we visited the Eucharistic Center. The last time I was there the young knights of the Holy Eucharist were the tour guides, but they had been transferred to Nebraska so a gentleman name Micah gave the tour.

When the Tour was over he took a few minutes to speak to me about his job.

The Vast Collection of Relics of Saints
The Vast Collection of Relics of Saints

When the tour was over and after a quick sandwich we had free time. I spent mine at Mother’s grave with several hundred rosaries saying a Hail Mary over each as I touched them to her grave.

Soon it was time to head back to St. Benedict Abbey where I visited and filmed the famous Grotto.

And interviewed Brother Christopher who gave us the history of brother Joseph

From there we were back to the cafeteria at St. Bernard Abbey where I interviewed one of the students who attended the school.

At St. Bernard Abbey
At St. Bernard Abbey
However at this point things took a turn for the worse. Our bus driver had been a tad under the weather on day one, by that evening he was in horrible pain. we had a pair of nurses on the trip who took a look at him and it was decided he needed to get to the local hospital. We had no way of getting him there. The Taxi services stopped running early, there was no Uber or Lyft and we failed to get ahold of the local parish or Knight of Columbus that we hoped to get a hand from. Eventually our driver drove to the hospital in his bus with our nurses with him while the rest of us took up a Rosary Circle. One of the Nurses takes up the story.

In the end our driver got the treatment he needed while a substitute driver arrived from Atlanta while he waited to be treated. Ironically our substitute had driven for our tour leader Maryann before and while our primary driver would have a day of rest we would be getting ready for our trip to the EWTN studio the next day.


If you like what you see here and want to help cover the costs from my Alabama trip which included the loss of a week’s pay please consider hitting DaTipjar. I promise not to pull a Hillary and keep charging you without your consent.




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There’s a new campaign, Abortion in Good Faith, promoting the killing of unborn children for the sake of “justice,”

“The ban on public funding is the single most detrimental policy to women’s access to abortion in the US,” said Jon O’Brien, president of Catholics for Choice. “We are tired of this grave injustice and our campaign lifts up the voices of Catholics who want this policy to change.”

The Catholics For Choice campaign calls for the end of restrictions on public funding of abortion, since those restrictions are “unjust,” and for ending the Hyde Amendment prohibiting federal funding for Medicaid coverage of abortion services.

Ed Morrissey does an excellent job of destroying each of the Abortion in Good Faith arguments, and includes the following,

The teachings on abortion within the universal Christian church go all the way back to its very first years. The Didache dates back to 70 AD, and is considered the first catechism or instruction on the faith. It’s the starting point for what Catholics call the magisterium after the canonical New Testament letters, from the Apostles themselves, and its position on abortion could not have been more clear:

And the second commandment of the Teaching; You shall not commit murder, you shall not commit adultery, you shall not commit pederasty, you shall not commit fornication, you shall not steal, you shall not practice magic, you shall not practice witchcraft, you shall not murder a child by abortion nor kill that which is begotten.

St. Basil of Caesarea addressed the issue a little over a century later:

Women also who administer drugs to cause abortion, as well as those who take poisons to destroy unborn children, are murderesses. So much on this subject.

Ed also points the Catechism of the Catholic Church, sections 2270-75, which start with (emphasis added),

2270 Human life must be respected and protected absolutely from the moment of conception. From the first moment of his existence, a human being must be recognized as having the rights of a person — among which is the inviolable right of every innocent being to life.(71)

It is spelled out clearly and unambiguously, again,

Human life must be respected and protected absolutely from the moment of conception.

Pro-abortion Democrats like the Catholics for Choice, Nancy Pelosi ,and Tim Kaine call themselves Catholic but ignore the Church’s doctrine on abortion, a doctrine dating back to the origins of the Church, either out of convenience, political expedience, willful ignorance, or moral obfuscation (or a combination of all) to promote the Hillary agenda and their party’s culture of death.

Naming their latest propaganda “Abortion in Good Faith” is a slap on the face, as the campaign aims for nothing “good” and certainly lacks “faith.”

Fausta Rodriguez Wertz writes on U.S, and Latin American politics, news, and culture at Fausta’s Blog.

 

I spoke to Fr. Mitch Pacwa after sitting in on his live show during my Trip to EWTN with the WQPH pilgrimage group.

The most important line? “If you don’t have time to pray they’ll be nothing” Now that’s a priest

I also interviewed his guest that day Author Peter Williamson who is writing commentaries of scripture:

The Show is here you might recognize the fellow in the scarf asking a question on air in at 35:50

Incidentally you also might recognize the room where I interviewed Fr Pacwa as Mother Angelica’s old office at EWTN where she was miraculously a couple of decades ago

If Mother Angelica is ever canonized that room would be full of 1st class relics (Things that were in physical contact with a saint). If that happens I guess I would technically become a 3rd class relic (Something that has been in contact with a 1st class relic).

I interviewed Brother Leo of the “Hey Brother Leo” series of Children’s books at EWTN

It’s important to remember that the Catholic faith is built on reason.

NOTE: You might have wondered what happened to this post. Due to a critical database error this post (originally posted Monday night) my scheduled lead post for Tuesday were both totally destoryed, not even a trace and my 2nd alabama trip post nearly so. That might sound bad but 2 hours earlies I had lost EVERY post from 2016 after Jan 16th so I’m going to count my blessings.

Everyone who acknowledges me before others I will acknowledge before my heavenly Father. But whoever denies me before others, I will deny before my heavenly Father.

Matthew 10:32-33

You know there are very few things more depressing when on a pilgrimage to the grave of a nun who built an organization proclaiming the truth of catholic faith to the world to read about this:

Sr Jane Marie Klein, told AP the name changes are in keeping with the mission of the Sisters of St Francis of Perpetual Adoration, which founded the hospital system.

What name change is Sr. Jane Marie Klein saying is in keeping with the mission of the Sisters of St. Francis of Perpetual adoration? Why removing the “saint” out of hospital names that she runs.

The health care system that oversees the Illinois and Indiana hospitals has determined that dropping the saint names will strengthen the brand identity of the system as a whole, according to the Indianapolis Business Journal.

“Unsainted” hospitals include those that had incorporated the names of St James, St Anthony, St Elizabeth, St Margaret, and St Francis.

Because nothing better illustrates the mission of Catholic nuns like ditch the saints and the Catholic identity they allude to.

It seems she followed the exact path that Screwtape suggested.

quietly and gradually nurse him on to the stage at which the religion becomes merely part of the “cause”… Once you have made the World an end, and faith a means, you have almost won your man, and it makes very little difference what kind of worldly end he is pursuing.

This entire story might seem confusing. While the Hospitals will discover that like God, the saints will not force themselves on those who don’t want them and will, however reluctantly agree to stay away, you would think that given the purpose of a hospital is to treat the sick, the aid of the Hospital’s patron would be very valuable. Of course that presumes actual belief and unfortunately I’ve discovered belief is not longer a given among the professed religious.

Exit question, who wants to bet that the Hospitals don’t remove the “St.” when trying to fundraise from faithful Catholics?


Still in alabama with WQPH, this Trip was a bit of an expense for me. If you like what you see here and want to help cover the costs please consider hitting DaTipjar




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on the set ewtn
on the set ewtn
My Trip to Alabama came about not so much as planned as requested. WQPH panned a pilgrimage to Mother Angelica’s grave to commemorate the nativity of the blessed mother.

With money tight my plans were to give it a miss but Mary Ann Harold of WQPH needed someone to shoot audio and interviews and if you know MaryAnn you will know it’s impossible to say no to her when he is trying to win souls for the Lord. So through a combination of permission to get a week off from work a ride from my brother and an increase in credit card debt not normally encouraged in conservatives I found myself at Logan Airport at 2:45 AM on Monday morning.

airport decour
airport decour

Our group of 30 boarded our flight with Southwest on time (for the first time ever I was in the “A” group so I planted myself at the back of the plane meaning to get 45 minutes of sleep on the flight to Baltimore when the pilot announced that the plane had a fuel leak and we would be delayed as it was repaired and the required paperwork filled out. While this offered excellent opportunities for sleep it meant we might not make our connecting flight in Baltimore to Birmingham which would disrupt our entire schedule. This type of thing seems to happen a lot on our pilgrimages almost as if something objected to it.

Da pilgrimage bus
Da pilgrimage bus

Eventually while I slept the plane was repaired and all the paperwork filled out and when I woke up we were in the air preparing to land in Baltimore. We were very behind and I saw a lot of trouble getting our people and luggage to the next plane but Southwest gave us a hand, deciding to use our current plane for the flight to Birmingham which quite erased the time we lost for the repairs.

After a short wait we were greeted by the large bus to for the 28 of us toward our destinations. We were in two groups. One opted to get more private accommodations at guest houses rentable near Mother Angelica’s monistary

Of of several guest houses near the shrine of the most blessed sacrament.
One of several guest houses near the shrine of the most blessed sacrament.
where over the course of the year pilgrims who want a bit more privacy but quick access to the shrine stay. We also dropped off a pair of priests at a special retreat center for priests at the shrine. Clergy are allowed to stay there free of charge on retreat to help them recharge for their 24/7 vocation.
The retreat center
The retreat center

The rest of us continued to Cullman Alabama to St. Bernard Monastery and school were we had accommodates for three of the four nights of our stay. We were lucky to get that time as a group of deacons were coming to the St. Bernards for retreat that week but there were willing to shoehorn us in to help us out. Yet another of the little things that went right when things seemed ready to go wrong.

Brother Christopher
Brother Christopher
. The plan was for mass at the Monastery followed by dinner but even with the nap on the plane I needed to get a little shut eye but by the time I woke up mass was long over and I just made dinner at the cafeteria where the resident students (who had not arrived yet as it was labor day) normally eat
the chapel at St Bernard Abbey
the chapel at St Bernard Abbey

After dinner we all prepared to crash. In the retreat building there was plenty of religious art and old books. I found a 115 year old volume of Catholic classics and read some Aquinas as I went to bed. It was going to be a very full next couple of days.

The next morning I walked to the Abbey church figuring to catch morning mass, but it turned out the monks had their mass at 5 PM so instead I prayed my morning prayers before the blessed sacrament. Many of the monks were on retreat but I was able to get an interview with Fr Kevin McGrath who had been at the Abbey for almost my entire life and later with our bus driver who owned the company

Little did we know that the curves on the road would not be the only ones facing us and him.


This Trip was a bit of an expense for me. If you like what you see here and want to help cover the costs please consider hitting DaTipjar




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As election day comes closer I find myself thinking of a sermon my pastor gave on the parable of the Good Samaritan.

For those not familiar with it, here is the passage in Luke Chapter 10 Verses 25 to 37

There was a scholar of the law who stood up to test him and said, “Teacher, what must I do to inherit eternal life?”

Jesus said to him, “What is written in the law? How do you read it?”

He said in reply, “You shall love the Lord, your God, with all your heart, with all your being, with all your strength, and with all your mind, and your neighbor as yourself.”

He replied to him, “You have answered correctly; do this and you will live.

But because he wished to justify himself, he said to Jesus, “And who is my neighbor?”

Jesus replied, “A man fell victim to robbers as he went down from Jerusalem to Jericho. They stripped and beat him and went off leaving him half-dead. A priest happened to be going down that road, but when he saw him, he passed by on the opposite side. Likewise a Levite came to the place, and when he saw him, he passed by on the opposite side.

But a Samaritan traveler who came upon him was moved with compassion at the sight. He approached the victim, poured oil and wine over his wounds and bandaged them. Then he lifted him up on his own animal, took him to an inn and cared for him. The next day he took out two silver coins and gave them to the innkeeper with the instruction, ‘Take care of him. If you spend more than what I have given you, I shall repay you on my way back.’

Which of these three, in your opinion, was neighbor to the robbers’ victim?” He answered, “The one who treated him with mercy.” Jesus said to him, “Go and do likewise.

When my pastor talked about this story he noted that there was more than meets the eye.

Priests in the time of Christ were born not made.  A priest might have only a couple of chances to serve in the temple in his lifetime.  So the priest seeing the injured man might have said to himself.  “Boy I’d really like to help out but if I do and become ritually unclean I can’t server in the temple and that’s more important.

Likewise the Levite had religious duties and might have said to himself.  Well my first duty is to God so while I’d really like to help I can’t make myself unclean and unable to serve him.

Put simply they (like the doctor of the law asking “who is my neighbor) found a plausible reason to not do what they knew they should and as our pastor explained, while both of them might have thought they were serving God better by doing what they did Jesus teaches them:  No you’ve got it wrong, to serve God you have to love your neighbor even if it carries risk.

And those days are coming soon to Christianity in the US, in fact they’ve already arrived.

Even before the election of Hillary we are seeing laws being passed that put Christian organizations in a horrible dilemma, either enable and/or justify sin or find yourself unable to act out your calling either due to financial penalties or legal prohibitions.

I’m sure there will be plenty of christians organizations whose lawyers, whose contributors and even some clergy will tell them:

Look think of all the good you are doing, or, listen you can’t risk the liability here if something goes wrong, or you can’t give your foes an opening by opposing them because they want to destroy you and anyways if you get the state upset you might lose  donors and then where will you be?

The problem is that Christ didn’t tell us to go out and be social workers (although we as Christians do many works for the social good) He didn’t preach be friends with the state (although Christian organizations invariably are not only good citizens but teach virtues that make their children good citizens as well)  And he didn’t tell us to worry about wealth (although he did say to use it for good).

What he DID say is go out and preach the good news to all the world, to do so with courage and be ready to be persecuted for doing so as he was.

 

A Christian who actually believes knows that there are worse things awaiting man than death and that to justify and/or encourage sin, in the hopes of doing good, only leads to death.

CS Lewis Screwtape warned us about this:

 The thing to do is to get a man at first to value social justice as a thing which the Enemy demands, and then work him on to the stage at which he values Christianity because it may produce social justice. For the Enemy will not be used as a convenience. 

If the post Vatican II world taught us anything it’s this:  One we decide we can ditch bits of the faith to keep the turnstiles turning we’ll find out really quickly that there’s no longer any demand to turn them at all.

Or put simply the first virtue is courage without that virtue no other can survive.  I fear we will find out in the near future what Christians have courage and the fear of God and which ones don’t.

Or put simply, don’t be the priest or the Levite in the story.

Baldilocks is tied up and her piece will go up thursday so to tide you over here are a pair of videos from the St. John Paul II Eucharistic Center at Mother angelica’s Monastery:

The role of Saint Juliana and Thomas Aquinas on the feast of Corpus Christi

and an interview with the gentleman who presented the tour

And lets throw in a few photos too

Meet one of the monks/priests at St Bernard Abbey in Cullman Alabama Fr. Ken McGrath

It’s really something to think of a man being a monk since I was five years old but what’s really something is to check out this page and see how many of the monks here are young enough to be my kids.

Orthodoxy creates vocations

liberal-tebow-800Yup, sharing this on Facebook totally made you a hero!

Were you angry about Colin Kaepernick not standing for the pledge of allegiance? Plenty of people on Facebook, Twitter and Reddit were.

Guess what? Colin doesn’t care, because he thinks you’re a sucker.

Sadly, he’s probably right. Kaepernick makes his money playing football. Plenty of you reading this will continue to buy NFL tickets, watch NFL on TV, and buy NFL merchandise. But you’ll put your little Facebook rant and say “See, I got him good!”, while Mr. Kaepernick laughs his way to the bank.

Addicts also rationalize this sort of behavior. I’ve watched many Sailors throw away a perfectly good career because they couldn’t stop snorting cocaine or drinking excessively. Every one of them had a “rational” explanation in their head that eventually collided with life’s hard reality.

SJWYeah, I’m like this most days…

So yes, I’m accusing you of addiction. You don’t really care about what Kaepernick says (or doesn’t say), because you’ll continue to fuel his expensive lifestyle. It’s not just the NFL though. How many of you “conservatives” still drink your 75 adjective coffee drinks from Starbucks, despite their support for Planned Parenthood’s continued genocide of innocent children? Is it because you just can’t find another caffeine fix, or do unborn lives not matter?

plannedparenthoodmeme
That caramel macchiato hates unborn and black lives

The truth is that unless you actually stand up for what you believe and change your behavior in real life (and Facebook isn’t real life), every Kaepernick and Starbucks will continue to trample on your beliefs, because your cowardly addiction gives them an unlimited license to do so.

This is the last week for Da Magnifient Prospects if you like RH NG36B share his work and hit DaTipjar and mention him




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and if you want to fight the MSM company store join the Have Fedora Will Travel pledge drive to send me to cover Donald Trump on the road

As a Knight of Columbus [that’s where my nom de plume comes from], I was particularly pleased to see the recent op-ed column by Supreme Knight Carl Anderson (whom I’ve had the pleasure to meet) in which he called for Catholic politicians either to stop supporting abortion “rights” or to resign their office. I could not agree with him more.  As Pope Benedict XVI said in Sacramentum Caritatis, the question of Catholic politicans supporting abortion is “not negotiable.” So a pro-abortion Catholic politician can only be one of two things:

  1. Misinformed on the Catholic teaching on abortion, such that he thinks his pro-abortion stance is somehow consistent with his Catholicism and thus with his conscience, or
  2. So craven in his desire for political power that he is willing to violate his conscience to acquire it.

Option 1 is addressable by knowledgeable Catholics engaging the candidate. Option 2 can only be addressed by the candidate himself, and I would argue that any politician who can be shown to be in this category should be automatically disqualified from receiving your vote (or anyone’s for that matter). [Note that I am not calling for a “religious test” for the candidate, but rather that voters disqualify him by not supporting the candidate. There’s a huge difference.] Moreover, if a sincere effort has been taken to inform the candidate to address the first problem and the candidate persists in his support for abortion, then the only conclusion to be drawn is that he is now in the second category and undeserving of your support. As a Knight, I find particularly galling the attitude of pro-abortion politicians who not only make an issue of their Catholicism, but also publicize their membership in the Knights of Columbus to enhance their credentials.

Indeed, I was involved a few years ago in an effort to have the Knights adopt a policy whereby they would kick out any member who, as a politician, could be shown to support legislation or policy that contradicted Catholic teaching on abortion, marriage or the family. We made considerable progress, but ultimately the motion was defeated at the Knights’ convention. The reasoning was that it was not the Knights’ job to determine who was a Catholic in good standing, which is the only qualification for becoming a Knight of Columbus in the first place. They felt that that decision lay with the bishops. I can’t help but feel that a certain amount of political reticense (dare I say “cowardice”) also played a part in the decision because the Knights are – quite rightly – protective of their tax-exempt status as a world-wide philanthopic and insurance agency.

Unfortunately, while the Knights could enforce such a policy in a non-partisan manner (Lord knows there are many Catholic Republicans who support abortion), it is undeniable that it would have a disparate impact on Democrat politicians due to that party’s extreme pro-abortion platform. And given Democrats’ penchant for forcing the Little Sisters of the Poor and other religious groups and individuals to violate their consciences to support abortion, it is a safe bet that such a policy would put the Knights firmly in the Democrats’ cross-hairs to remove the tax exemption that enables the Knights to do so much good work throughout the world.

But if our Supreme Knight recognizes that pro-abortion Catholic politicians are in serious-enough error to call for their resignation, surely if they persist in their error, Mr. Anderson should call for their resignation from the Knights. Allowing them to continue as Knights brings scandal and undermines the Knights’ position as the pre-eminent private Catholic charitable institution in the world. While I applaud his call that Catholics must not vote for such politicians (including Tim Kaine), I challenge him to extend this policy to its logical conclusion.

A note to readers: It’s getting down to “crunch time” for Da Magnificent Prospects, so I’d really appreciate it if you could share this article and my others with your social media friends. My other articles are:

Hamilton and Marriage
Trump, the Church and Immigration
The “Final Five” Show Us How It’s Done
The Left is Wrong About Rights
Ends, Means and Democrats
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A local cultural observation, just to break up the campaign coverage for a minute…

The Latin Mass can pack a room, and it ain’t all about nostalgia. (Or, as friend used to spell it, “naustalgia,” which I always took to mean the past making you sick.) One of the old ethnic churches in my New England city has just been re-opened after being shuttered for 15 years. Our bishop asked an order of priests dedicated to the Tridentine Mass to set up shop, and the order obliged. The first Sunday Mass was held recently, and it was an eye-opener.

First of all, the number of young families was staggering. They’re looking to the future. Talking with them after Mass was like a tonic.

The church was packed, people standing in the back, even 40 or so standing on the steps outside when the church filled up. It’s possible some were there for the novelty, or to see what a Latin Mass was like. There were a few folks who had been parishioners back in the days when it was “the Polish parish.” There were certainly some pre-Vatican II Catholics who wanted the liturgy of their youth. Most of the attendees, though, looked like they’d been born well after the mid-1960s.

Second, the bumper stickers out in the parking lot indicated a lot of politically-engaged people in attendance. There were humorous (not to say barbed) slogans and serious ones, many explicitly pro-life, few explicitly partisan, yet all designed to give a Democratic nominee the vapors.

So what?

I’ll tell you what this looks like to me: these people praying together are not cultural refugees. They’re not wringing their hands. They’re looking past the next election. They’re steeped less in tradition per se than in faith in God. And they’re bringing that faith with them as they raise their kids, go about their daily business, and prepare to vote.

If the Republican nominee prevails, these are people who will keep him on his toes. If the Democratic nominee prevails – and she won’t, if these folks have their way – these are people who have the makings of resistance, if not outright defiance. People who take their religious faith and their American citizenship seriously are a force to reckoned with, with or without a “win” in November. Let others talk (without a constitutional basis) about separation of church and state – just don’t expect separation of faith and daily life.

Am I giving too much credit to one event in one small city? Maybe. Still, there’s something about that church full of savvy young families that shook up my pessimism about the upcoming election. I needed the reality check.

As for the Mass itself, it was a revelation to me. I’m a post-Vatican II cradle Catholic. Let’s just say there seem to be riches I’ve yet to discover.

Ellen Kolb writes about the life issues at LeavenForTheLoaf.com. When she’s not writing, she’s hiking in New Hampshire. See her earlier posts for DaTechGuyBlog: Ethics and PP’s Campaign Cash, Putting a Know-Nothing in His Place, Ads Say the Darnedest Things, and Worried About the Court? Then Worry About the Senate. 

A note to readers: I’m still one of DaTechGuy’s Magnificent Prospects, striving to earn your thumbs-up. DTG will be judging the entries in Da Magnificent Tryouts by hits-per-post and hits to DaTipJar. If you hit DaTipJar after reading one of my posts, please mention my name so Da Boss knows I’m earning my keep – and thank you! (Look for a tip jar link at the right side of the page if it’s not visible below.)




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Reg:  All right, but apart from the sanitation, medicine, education, wine, public order, irrigation, roads, the fresh water system and public health, what have the Romans ever done for us?

Monty Python  Life of Brian 1979

Helen Ramirez: You want to know why I’m leaving?  Then listen.   Kane will be dead in half an hour.   And nobody’s going to do anything about it. And when he dies, this town dies too.   I can feel it.

High Noon 1952

Wednesday I wrote about how the situation in Louisiana doesn’t help the MSM’s cause and how it’s affects their coverage but there is another aspect that I’ve talked about before in these web pages that Rod Dreher mentioned in the piece I quoted that, that is worthy of its own post:

you would be hard-pressed to find a single church or Christian organization (like the school community of which I’m a part) that isn’t in some way helping flood victims. I’m not talking about simply giving money. I’m talking about doing sacrificial work to help those who are helpless.

This of course is no surprise to any Christian of any denomination as it echoes the words of St. James in his letter:

If a brother or sister has nothing to wear and has no food for the day, and one of you says to them, “Go in peace, keep warm, and eat well,” but you do not give them the necessities of the body, what good is it?

James 2:15-16

Christians are not just called to be believers, we are called to be doers.  If you look at the Ten Commandments they are divided between the things we do based on our duty to God as his children and our duties to each other as brothers and sisters or as Christ put it.  

One of the scribes, when he came forward and heard them disputing and saw how well he had answered them, asked him, “Which is the first of all the commandments?”

Jesus replied, “The first is this: ‘Hear, O Israel! The Lord our God is Lord alone!  You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, with all your mind, and with all your strength.’  The second is this: ‘You shall love your neighbor as yourself.’ There is no other commandment greater than these.”

Mark 12:28-31

This is the reason why as Matthew Kelly said:

Every single day the Catholic Church feeds more people, houses more people , clothes more people, visits more imprisoned people and educates more people than any other institution on the planet earth can ever hope to.

Worcester Mass. March 20th 2010

And you will find that if you go to your local church of any denomination, Catholic or Protestant you will find people either quietly or loudly doing all the good works that a lot of you.

The media has not talked about this, any more than they bothered to talk about Miravia or the Kolping Society or visitation house or the open arms society.

Why do I bring all this up, because Rod mentions something of interest concerning the upcoming election and the election of Hillary:

Some people say that loss of tax-exempt status, which is what many progressives would like to see happen to dissident churches, will be no big deal. Why should their tax dollars go to subsidize bigotry? they reason.

It will be a very big deal. All contributions to churches and Christian organizations doing relief work are tax-deductible at the present time. This will likely go away, dramatically hampering the resources available to conservative churches like Istrouma to help the suffering in instances like this. Far as I know, nobody has seen crews from the Human Rights Campaign mucking out houses or feeding refugees.

Of course if they lose their tax exemption, churches will still do these things. But they will have many fewer resources with which to do so. Progressives either have not thought about this, or, as I suspect, they just don’t care.

I guarantee you won’t see Jim Carville saying “this is saving people lives” in arguing against this.  Our liberal “friends” have embraced a different faith and that faith’s primary enemy is Christianity.

One of the worst things about all this, is many Christians don’t see it coming

I find that even at this late date, it is difficult to get ordinary Christians, including pastors, to understand the reality of what’s coming. You should believe David Gushee. He has done us all a favor here. He and his allies — that is, the entire American establishment — are going to do everything they possibly can to eliminate any place of retreat. When people say that if the Left has its way, there will be no Benedict Option places left to retreat to, I agree. That does not mean they will succeed, at least not at first, but it’s just a matter of time. This means that we will need the Benedict Option more than ever. The Ben Op is not about escapism; it’s about building the institutions and adopting the practices required for the church to be resilient, and even to thrive, under harsh conditions. The church will be under unprecedented pressure, legally and socially, to capitulate. But it will be possible to resist, though not without paying a high cost.

But the people who won’t see it coming are the poor, the indigent the destitute and those caught in disaster who will discover very quickly the difference between the church coming to help without question or condition in your time of trouble and relying on the state.

That’s how a culture dies and when it does it will be through our own actions and inactions.


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trump_pointing
This guy wants you to stop whining

I have a concealed carry permit.  I don’t brag about it or bring it up in conversation.  I don’t tell people when I’m carrying a weapon.  I just follow the laws and blend in, and I find most permit holders do the same.

In Texas, that apparently isn’t good enough, as hundreds of people found it appropriate to wear dildos to class.  Concealed carry folks wanted to carry in the classroom to protect students and faculty from mass shooters.  I’m not entirely certain the purpose behind open carrying dildos.

PM9This will protect you from a mass shooter. A dildo…not so much.

But it’s not just gun rights.  Heaven help you if you express conservative views.  At my college, I spoke out against affirmative action, something that the Supreme Court eventually decided was wrong.  No matter.  Rather than a civil discussion, I was harassed.  At the same college, it was OK to openly harass members showing pictures of aborted babies, but harassing someone defending abortion was an attack on women’s rights (despite statistics that many women don’t support abortion).

gallupabortion
Looks like a heck of an even split, although you wouldn’t guess that from news coverage

After enduring that harassment, I’m perfectly OK with liberal heads exploding over Donald Trump.  I don’t agree with all his policies, but he brings a smile to my face when liberals gasp over how crass and rude he can be.  Newsflash: it’s the same rude and crass behavior that you dished out to me and others over the last 15 years that we quietly absorbed.  Stop whining when the quiet kid you picked on suddenly finds a bigger bully.


The views expressed in this blog post are those of the author and do not reflect the official policy or position of the Department of the Navy, Department of Defense, or U.S. Government.


NG36B is a military blogger who regularly blogs at The Navy’s Grade 36 Bureaucrat. If you love your kids and America, you should buy his Kindle book about the Navy and read it to them every night.

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My teenage daughter is obsessed with Hamilton, the musical that has taken Broadway by storm. Not being a fan of rap music, I was not particularly interested in listening to the soundtrack, but seeing my daughter’s reaction to it made me more than a little curious. We recently had occasion to spend quite a bit of commuting time in the car together and, since she had the music on her phone, the show’s soundtrack became the soundtrack of our drives. It’s easy to see why the show has become so popular, and a show that can save Alexander Hamilton’s place on the $10 bill and increase the appreciation people have for our Founding Fathers can’t be a bad thing, no matter how much rap it contains (and fortunately there is plenty of other styles of music that I found quite compelling). I was equally impressed with my daughter’s ability to sing along with the cast (sometimes mixing multiple parts, which was amazing) with her inserted commentary about the political and military background of the events depicted, even pointing out the historical inaccuracies in the script! Clearly she’s been learning more than just the lyrics. But there was one lesson in particular I wanted her to learn from the show, and it is one that Hamilton and his wife, Eliza, learned the hard way. CAUTION: Mild Spoilers ahead.

When my wife and I were engaged, we went through a multi-week Marriage Preparation program with our pastor, whom I’ll call “Father N.” One part of the program called for us each to fill out a questionnaire to determine if we had similar attitudes about different aspecs of marriage, from Faith to finances, family and even fidelity. One question in particular stood out: “Are there any circumstances under which you might choose to get a divorce?”

My bride and I had actually spoken about this in advance and both made it clear that infidelity would be a dealbreaker, so we both answered “yes” to the question. When evaluating our results, Father N pointed to that as the only problem with our answers. He said that in answering “yes” to that question, we were giving ourselves an “out,” which contradicts the Catholic view of marriage. Even though we had only one serious condition in mind, the idea that there could be one thing that would end our marriage could lead us to consider other lesser offenses to somehow rise to that level. In giving ourselves an out, we would have been entering our marriage without understanding what we were really doing. Unfortunately, too many couples in our society today lack that understanding and think that it’s OK to abandon their marriage for far more trivial reasons.

That was not true in Hamilton’s time, and the musical shows us this. Whether through faith or through fear of scandal, even when Hamilton’s infidelity comes to light, he and Eliza stay married, as difficult as that is. In “Burn,” Eliza makes her feelings clear:

You forfeit all rights to my heart
You forfeit the place in our bed
You sleep in your office instead

Recognizing that he is at fault, Hamilton refuses to give up. In “It’s Quiet Uptown,” he rekindles his Faith and does his best to win Eliza’s heart again:

I take the children to church on Sunday
A sign of the cross at the door
And I pray
That never used to happen before

It is his steadfastness, especially in facing the death of their son Philip, that they eventually experience “a grace too powerful to name” and she eventually forgives him:

Alexander by Eliza’s side
She takes his hand

After his untimely death, Eliza rededicates her life to continuing his legacy as best she can:

The Lord, in his kindness
He gives me what you always wanted
He gives me more / Time

She raises money for the Washington Monument, speaks out against slavery and, most telling, establishes the first private orphanage in New York City and helps raise hundreds of children, saying “In their eyes, I see you, Alexander.” Finally, she expresses her belief that she will see him again, in time.

Maybe in addition to learning about our nation’s founding, fans of Hamilton will also learn the true spirit of commitment, love and forgiveness inherent in marriage. Wouldn’t that be something?

A note to readers: It’s getting down to “crunch time” for Da Magnificent Prospects, so I’d really appreciate it if you could share this article and my others with your social media friends. My other articles are:
Trump, the Church and Immigration
The “Final Five” Show Us How It’s Done
The Left is Wrong About Rights
Ends, Means and Democrats
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A note from DaTechGuy: I hope you enjoyed Tech Knight’s piece. Remember we will be judging the entries in Da Magnificent tryouts by hits both to their post and to DaTipJar. So if you like Tech Knight’s work, please consider sharing this post, and if you hit DaTipjar because of it don’t forget to mention Tech Knight’s post as the reason you did so.

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christrio

Even with the iconic statue of Jesus Christ watching over the Rio Olympics, NBC and mainstream media outlets have chosen to ignore the importance of religion among athletes.

For example, swimmer Michael Phelps, one of the greatest Olympians ever, lost his way until he found God a few years ago.

“I was a train wreck. I was like a time bomb, waiting to go off. I had no self-esteem, no self-worth. There were times where I didn’t want to be here. It was not good. I felt lost,” Phelps said.

After his second DUI, Phelps got a call from former NFL star Ray Lewis, who helped the swimmer onto the road of religious recovery.

Simone Biles, the gymnast who won four gold medals, carries a rosary in her warmup bag and lights a candle in church before an event. Instead of emphasizing her religious beliefs, NBC and others talk about her mother, a former drug addict.

Katie Ledecky, a Catholic like Biles, says a Hail Mary before each swimming event and proudly makes her religious views known. Simone Manuel, the first African-American woman to earn a gold medal in swimming, praised God after winning the 100-meter freestyle. Her reference to God got edited out when NBC put up the video on YouTube.

After Usain Bolt of Jamaica, the fastest man in the world, won his third gold medal in the 100-meter sprint, he fell to his knees to pray. The NBC commentators apparently couldn’t bring themselves to utter the word “prayer.”

Many other examples exist, but NBC and other mainstream media have focused on less significant details of athletes’ lives rather than their trust in God. Fortunately, faith-based news organizations have chronicled what the athletes themselves consider their most important characteristic: their belief in God.

The Christian Post wrote about U.S. athletes and their faith at http://www.christianpost.com/news/10-christian-team-usa-athletes-at-rio-olympics-2016-who-put-god-first-167556/

Eric Metaxas interviewed religion writer Terry Mattingly about God and the Olympics at https://soundcloud.com/the-eric-metaxas-show/terry-mattingly-5


Christopher Harper, a longtime journalist with The Associated Press, Newsweek, ABC News and The Washington Times, teaches media law. Read more at www.mediamashup.org

*****************************************
A note from DaTechGugy:
I hope you enjoyed Christopher Harper’s piece. Remember we will be judging the entries in Da Magnificent tryouts by hits both to their post and to DaTipJar. So if you like Christopher Harper’s work, please consider sharing this post, and if you hit DaTipjar [on the right] because of it, don’t forget to mention Chris’ post is the reason you did so. In case you missed his other pieces, here they are:

Budding reporters and politics
Give terrorists what they deserve: anonymity
The ‘BS’ factor

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Donald Trump delivered a rather compelling speech on Monday about terrorism and protecting our country from those who would do us harm. As usual, the media, who praised Trump during the primary as an iconoclast who refused to play by the traditional rules, are now casting him as a lunatic who refuses to play by the traditional rules. So, typically, they have ignored the substance of the speech, which is that Hillary Clinton and President Obama have objectively made our country less safe by their mishandling of international relations, especially in the Middle East, and tried to make Trump sound at the very least unhinged when he spoke about establishing criteria to decide who gets to immigrate here.
Here’s what he said:

We should only admit into this country those who share our values and respect our people. Those who do not believe in our Constitution, or who support bigotry and hatred, will not be admitted for immigration into the country. Only those who we expect to flourish in our country – and to embrace a tolerant American society – should be issued visas. (via politico)

In other words, the government’s purpose for “establish[ing] a uniform Rule of Naturalization” (the Constitution, Article I, Section 8) is to improve the safety, security and general welfare of its citizens. Let’s be clear: non-citizens do not have a right to become U.S. citizens, nor do they even have a right to enter our country unless we decide to let them.
As I mentioned in my first article, I am a Catholic and a Constitutionalist. I try my best to be a good Catholic and try to make sure that my Constitutionalist instincts fit within that framework. Fortunately, in the case of immigration, this is not that difficult. The Catholic position is described in the Catechism of the Catholic Church (clause 2241):

Political authorities, for the sake of the common good for which they are responsible, may make the exercise of the right to immigrate subject to various juridical conditions, especially with regard to the immigrants’ duties toward their country of adoption. Immigrants are obliged to respect with gratitude the material and spiritual heritage of the country that receives them, to obey its laws and to assist in carrying civic burdens.

Thus, according to the Church, the government has the right to establish conditions “for the sake of the common good” under which someone may immigrate. Of course, the immigrant also has the duty to “respect the heritage” of the U.S. when they come here. (One could argue that the reason we now have to press 1 for English is that immigrants since the passing of the 1965 Immigration and Nationality Act have failed to live up to this obligation, but that’s a separate discussion.) In short, they should be coming here to become American. So what’s the problem with vetting people who want to come here from regions of the world where Islamic terrorism is rampant and excluding those found unacceptable?
Putting aside for the moment the practicality and logistics of such an effort, is there really a problem with establishing an immigration policy like what Trump described? It is certainly Constitutional, and it appears to be Catholic as well. There’s just one little wrinkle. The first part of the clause I quoted from the Catechism states:

The more prosperous nations are obliged, to the extent they are able, to welcome the foreigner in search of the security and the means of livelihood which he cannot find in his country of origin.

Thus, the Catholic position would be that a blanket ban on immigration from certain countries or regions would be unacceptable because we must allow the truly persecuted refugee to come to our shores out of compassion. So where do we draw the line? All I can say is that by calling for “extreme vetting” – which would allow for admitting the truly persecuted – and temporary holds, Trump appears to be closer to the Catholic position than Clinton who seems to be ignoring her Catholic responsibility of focusing on the common good of American citizens, by whom she is hoping to be elected.

A note to readers: It’s getting down to “crunch time” for Da Magnificent Prospects, so I’d really appreciate it if you could share this article and my others with your social media friends. My other articles are:
The “Final Five” Show Us How It’s Done
The Left is Wrong About Rights
Ends, Means and Democrats
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After mass today the celebrant Fr. Scott sat for a quick interview

A Catholic priest never knows what kind of parish or situation he will end up with.

Here is the Stained Glass window I mentioned in the interview

Genesis 14:18-20
Genesis 14:18-20

Here is the passage it refers to in Genesis Chapter 14 verses 14-20:

When Abram heard that his nephew had been captured, he mustered three hundred and eighteen of his retainers, born in his house, and went in pursuit as far as Dan. He and his party deployed against them at night, defeated them, and pursued them as far as Hobah, which is north of Damascus. He recovered all the possessions, besides bringing back his kinsman Lot and his possessions, along with the women and the other captives. When Abram returned from his victory over Chedorlaomer and the kings who were allied with him, the king of Sodom went out to greet him in the Valley of Shaveh (that is, the King’s Valley).

Melchizedek, king of Salem, brought out bread and wine, and being a priest of God Most High, he blessed Abram with these words:

Blessed be Abram by God Most High, the creator of heaven and earth;

And blessed be God Most High, who delivered your foes into your hand.” Then Abram gave him a tenth of everything.

and if you’re interested (and even if you’re not) here are some photos from the Sacristy of the cathedral

“God who gave us life gave us liberty. Can the liberties of a nation be secure when we have removed the conviction that these liberties are the gift of God?”

Thomas Jefferson
Engraved on the wall of the Jefferson Memorial

“That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed.”

Thomas Jefferson
The Declaration of Independence

There are two important things to note about the rights guaranteed us by the Constitution. The first is that the Constitution doesn’t “grant” us any rights. Instead, it speaks of rights already in existence (unalienable and endowed by our creator, according to the Declaration of Independence) and explicitly prohibits the government from infringing on those rights. The second is that each of the rights explicitly spelled out in the Constitution is personal.

Liberals tend to talk about rights in terms of what others must give you: a “living wage,” health care, housing, or even an abortion. These liberal “rights” get things exactly backwards. The only way one person can have a right to something that someone else must provide is for the provider to be forced to provide it, regardless of his consent.

The liberals on the Supreme Court, in Whole Women’s Health v. Hellerstedt, recently struck down the eminently-sensible Texas law that ensured safe conditions for women seeking abortions. Their “reasoning” was that the law unreasonably restricted women’s access to abortions. Let’s think about that logically for a moment. The Supreme Court, citing a “right” that is not mentioned anywhere in the Constitution, has said that it is unconstitutional to restrict a woman’s access to abortion.

Let’s do a thought experiment. Suppose that all the abortionists in the country suddenly decided to move to Australia. Or, in an unfortunately less-likely scenario, let’s suppose that every abortionist suddenly developed a conscience and realized that they had been murdering innocent children and repented, refusing to perform any more abortions. Could anything restrict a woman’s access to abortion more than that? What then of this supposed “right” for a woman to get an abortion? Is it really possible that the Supreme Court, or Congress, or even a State Legislature could somehow prohibit this mass-exodus of abortionists? I can just see Anthony Kennedy and Elena Kagan at JFK airport looking for that last abortionist and tackling him before he can board that last flight out. The logical conclusion is that the supposed “right” to abortion is no right at all.

Is there a “right” to housing? How can that possibly be when someone must build the house? And who decides what kind of house? Do you have the right to three bedrooms or only two? A cape in the suburbs or a brownstone in the city? If you have the right to a “living wage,” who decides what that is? How hard do you have to work to receive it? How good do you have to be at your job? Does a “living wage” include cable TV and a cell phone?

It simply cannot be that anyone can have a right to something that someone else must provide. The truth is that liberals are not interested in rights as our founders understood them. They invent “rights” for one of two reasons. Either they are trying to force people to behave a certain way or they are trying to buy votes from people who care more about what government can give them than protecting themselves against what government can do to them. Anyone who supports this approach cannot claim to “support and defend the Constitution.”


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A dirty look.  That’s what I saw flash from an older lady towards a mom of two who had stopped in the mall to breastfeed her youngest child.  I wouldn’t have noticed had my cousin not previously complained on Facebook about how she was asked to cover up for publicly breastfeeding.  Sure enough, the more women I asked, the more stories I received about public breastfeeding shaming.

What we men haven’t recognized is that this is another slight against traditional family values.  Breastfeeding is about the healthiest thing a mother can do, both for her child and for her.  But strangely enough, despite a society devoted to organic, pesticide-free and other labels, we have a large number of people who would rather force our mothers to formula feed.

Somehow this avoids exposing breasts in the mall, even under one of the displayed underwear models.

Gentlemen, if this continues, our wives will be shamed into staying home or making unhealthy choices.  Public breastfeeding is also a gentleman’s fight.  We need to start advocating for our wives and the wives of others.  We can’t say we hold traditional values if other trample on our family rights right in front of us.

My story has a good ending.  I walked past the scowling woman and asked the young mother “Can I help you with anything?”  Sure enough, her older son had dropped a toy.  I retrieved it while her hands were full.  By the time I turned back, the old hag was gone.

NG36B is a husband, father to four kids and an active duty Navy Officer.  He blogs regularly at The Navy’s Grade 36 Bureaucrat.


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Senator Joseph Paine: I know how you feel, Jeff. Thirty years ago – I had those ideals, too. I was *you*. I had to make the decision you were asked to make today. And I compromised – yes! So that all these years I could stay in that Senate – and serve the people in a thousand honest ways! You’ve got to face facts, Jeff. I’ve served our state well, haven’t I? We have the lowest unemployment and the highest federal grants. But, well, I’ve had to compromise, had to play ball. You can’t count on people voting, half the time they don’t vote, anyway. That’s how states and empires have been built since time began. Don’t you understand? Well, Jeff, you can take my word for it, that’s how things are. Now I’ve told you all this because – well, I’ve grown very fond of you – about like a son – in fact, and I don’t want to see you get hurt. Now, when that deficiency bill comes up in the Senate tomorrow, you stay away from it. Don’t say a word. Great powers are behind it, and they’ll destroy you before you can even get started. For your own sake, Jeff, and for the sake of my friendship with your father, please, don’t say a word.

Mr. Smith Goes to Washington 1939

 

If you want to really understand the mindset of the “Personally Opposed” argument on abortion let me illustrate this with a reading from the Holy Gospel according to Matthew augmented by the Holy Gospel according to Sen Tim Kaine. (The Gospel of Kaine being unitalicized and indented).

Now on the occasion of the feast the governor was accustomed to release to the crowd one prisoner whom they wished. And at that time they had a notorious prisoner called (Jesus) Barabbas. So when they had assembled, Pilate said to them, “Which one do you want me to release to you, (Jesus) Barabbas, or Jesus called Messiah?” For he knew that it was out of envy that they had handed him over. While he was still seated on the bench, his wife sent him a message, “Have nothing to do with that righteous man. I suffered much in a dream today because of him.” The chief priests and the elders persuaded the crowds to ask for Barabbas but to destroy Jesus.

Matt 27:15-20

And Lo in the crowd stood Tim, who had heard the words of Christ over the last three years.  And he turned and spoke to the guy standing next to him in the crowd and said:

“You know I’ve heard and seen Jesus.  He’s done wonderful things and teaches as no other does. He’s certainly not guilty like that horrible Barabbas”

The governor said to them in reply, “Which of the two do you want me to release to you?” They answered, “Barabbas!”

Matt 27:21

And Lo Tim who had seen Christ called for Barabbas even louder than the rest.  And the guy standing next to him seemed confused and was about to ask him about it when Tim continued: “In fact I think Jesus is the messiah for he has  done miracles from God that no one else could have.”

Pilate said to them, “Then what shall I do with Jesus called Messiah?” They all said, “Let him be crucified!”

Matt 27:22

And Lo again Tim did scream “Let him be Crucified” even louder than the rest.  And again the man next to him seemed confused and prepared to ask Tim about them but before he could say a word Tim spoke:  “Yes sir Jesus of Nazareth is the son of God all right!”

But he said, “Why? What evil has he done?” They only shouted the louder, “Let him be crucified!”

Matt 27:23

And again Tim shouted it louder than the rest and he turned to speak to the fellow next to him but he, not able to stand it any longer, turned to Tim and spake:  “Tim I don’t understand it? You say that Jesus is the messiah, the son of God, you say nobody could do the things he has done yet you are publicly crying for him to be crucified?  Why?”

When Pilate saw that he was not succeeding at all, but that a riot was breaking out instead, he took water and washed his hands in the sight of the crowd, saying, “I am innocent of this man’s blood. Look to it yourselves.”

Matt 27:24

And then Tim turned to his friend and said:  “Well you must understand while I’m publicly committed to supporting the chief priests in the condemnation and  crucifixion of Jesus Christ I think it’s a bad idea and am personally opposed to it.”

And the whole people said in reply, “His blood be upon us and upon our children.”

Matt 27:25

and then after Tim joined in this cry his friend looked at him incredulously and spake: “Well that makes all the difference doesn’t it?”

Then he released Barabbas to them, but after he had Jesus scourged,  he handed him over to be crucified.

Matt 27:26

here endith the lesson.


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A government of laws, and not of men.

– John Adams, Novanglus Essays, No. 7

The Constitution is a pretty straightforward document. It explains how the government is to be organized and lays out the rights and responsibilities of each branch, as well as specifying those things the government may not do so as to protect our God-given rights. It really defines a relatively simple set of rules, and establishes our country on principles that are pretty much the opposite of “the ends justify the means.” This is why I have such a problem with the Democrat party being about to nominate someone whose entire life is a testament to skirting the law, obstructing justice and pursuing any means necessary to achieve her desired ends. I am shocked that “We the People” could have let ourselves be put in this position.

Let’s apply Occam’s razor to the two big email-related scandals plaguing the presumptive (for another day) Democrat nominee, shall we? Without even speculating on what information might be in them, is there really any doubt that she hid all her email traffic (not to mention her daily calendar) from government servers so that it wouldn’t be subject to Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) access? Regardless of whether the emails were classified, she broke the law by hiding them. The simplest explanation is that she hid them because they contain information that she thinks would anger the public and/or congress and make it more difficult for her to become president. And the Democrats think that this law-breaking failed Secretary of State is the most qualified person ever to run for president? Seriously?

Then there’s the DNC email leak, showing that the DNC rigged the nomination process to sabotage the Sanders campaign and nominate Hillary. This was obvious from the moment they announced the limited number of debates and did their best to hide them on holiday weekends when no one would be watching, but the emails reveal much more chicanery. The fact that Debbie Wasserman Schultz is going immediately from disgraced DNC chair to honorary chair of Hillary’s campaign simply illustrates the quid pro quo – another example of breaking the rules to achieve the desired result.

I guess the party of “the ends justify the means” really has found the person they believe is the most qualified person ever to run for president. It’s too bad that their definition of “qualified” is “having no qualms about violating every principle on which and for which this country once stood.”

Who is Tech Knight? I am a Catholic conservative married (20+ years) father of two. My logical mind comes from my engineering background, but I am also a bit of a history buff, particularly our nation’s founding. I have been very active in my parish as a lector and serving on our Parish Council, and have volunteered for a number of community organizations, especially the Boy Scouts and local youth theaters, to be able to spend time with my kids. My wife is my compass, my best friend and the love of my life.

I’d like to thank Pete DaTechGuy for this opportunity. If you appreciate the work done here as much as I do, please help us keep it going by hitting DaTipJar:


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Consider too what undesirable deaths occur in wartime. Men are killed in places where the knew they might be killed and to which they go, if they are at all of the Enemy’s party, prepared. How much better for us if all humans died in costly nursing homes amid doctors who lie, nurses who lie, friends who lie, as we have trained them, promising life to the dying, encouraging the belief that sickness excuses every indulgence, and even, if our workers know their job, withholding all suggestion of a priest lest it should betray to the sick man his true condition! And how disastrous for us is the continual remembrance of death which war enforces. One of our best weapons, contented worldliness, is rendered useless. In wartime not even a human can believe that he is going to live forever.

C. S. Lewis: The Screwtape Letters #5

There are a lot of things to say about the events of the last 48 hours. How one can never be sure how the news cycle is going to play out, how conventional wisdom changes in a heartbeat, how little things that might seem important are in the great scheme of things.

Additionally our responses to Nice and Turkey are going to be endlessly discussed, and spun. You will hear very smart people in nice clothes tell you why X means Y while other smart people also in nice clothes will insist that not only does X not mean Y but everybody knows it means Z.

Furthermore on social media from facebook to twitter people will go back and forth on this positions, except of course for those playing the Pokemon Go app who will be so busy looking for a Meowth that they won’t even notice that these events took place.

But there is one aspect of all of these things that I want to hit you from a theological standpoint.

We’ve seen news stories concerning Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas leaving Nice just before the attack took place, Mark Kirkorian of NRO who I had just seen in DC last month was on the scene and wrote about what he saw and heard.  In Turkey CNN had Americans who were in the country on the phone describing what they saw and their attempts to make it back to their hotel before curfew while the fate of the country they were in was decided around them.  I’m sure those were murdered in Nice and many of those who fell in Turkey had no idea when they arouse that day it would be their last.

And that why Father Z’s piece on the subject hit me right between the eyes:

GO TO CONFESSION.  We don’t know when it will be our turn, no matter how situationally aware we are.  Ask God to preserve us from a sudden and unprovided death.

A subitanea et improvisa morte… From a sudden and unprovided death, spare us O Lord.”

A sudden death can be a blessing. A sudden and unprovided death – unprovided in the sense of having no recourse to the sacraments when you are not in the state of grace – is a horrifying prospect. Make plans for, provide for, the needs of both body and soul for yourselves and those in your charge. You don’t know when your death will come, natural or not.

The only consistent thing in life is death whether from age or accident, disease or murder, from no fault of our own or due to our own stupidity death will come to all of us and no amount of pretense or distraction will make it otherwise.  Furthermore the reality of the existence of God is completely divorced from any person or culture belief in it.

If you are at all Catholic go to confession and take advantage of the indulgences available till Nov 10th.

If you are a christian of any denomination or a non christian find out why people from mobsters to fashion models from atheists, and abortionists to satanists have found their way to the church.

Or better yet visit a church. Go to a mass, we have them every day and when it’s over go to the priest and ask what it’s all about or just talk. Find a divine mercy chapel in your area and just visit with Christ.

And if none of that is possible due to age, infirmity or circumstance find EWTN on your TV or radio dial and take a look (yes TVs once had dials).

You will be surprised how possible it is to hear God’s call to you when you turn down the noise of the world drowning it out.

“What you say makes no sense, how can this be?” said the king incredulous at the prophet’s words.

“My Lord I do not claim to understand it” said Nathan,”but as surely as the Lord lives and has given me his words, He was there with the strangers.”

“You saw his angel?”

“It was not his angel”, spoke the prophet still aghast, “When the stranger raised the bread to heaven, it was He, among them and the strangers knelt in supplication.”

“So the Lord appeared when he raised the bread?”, asked David.

“No my Lord”, Nathan paused “He WAS the bread!”

You have heard that it was said to your ancestors, ‘You shall not kill; and whoever kills will be liable to judgment.’ But I say to you, whoever is angry with his brother will be liable to judgment, and whoever says to his brother, ‘Raqa,’ will be answerable to the Sanhedrin, and whoever says, ‘You fool,’ will be liable to fiery Gehenna. Therefore, if you bring your gift to the altar, and there recall that your brother has anything against you, leave your gift there at the altar, go first and be reconciled with your brother, and then come and offer your gift.

Matthew 5:21-24

Before I fell asleep yesterday afternoon the most outrageous thing that had happened Thursday was the testimony of the chief of the FBI whose assertions, prevarications and evasions combined with there being no record of Hillary’s questioning bothered and astounded me.

Then I woke up when my wife got home and looked at my computer to find that snipers had killed four police officers during a blm protest and frankly I was furious, not only at the murders but at the point out country has reached and those who have or their own gain pushed us in this direction. These tweets were typical

For reasons I can’t explain It suddenly dawned on me that my angry reaction was in fact a temptation so I invoked my guardian angel and tweeted an odd fact.

and suddenly everything changed, both in terms of my emotions and in terms of my tweets.

Take a look at my timeline before and after 1:58 AM and look at the difference. I submit and suggest that to faithful christians in general and catholics in particular that is a “feature”.

Perhaps it is time for us as a nation to consider the advantages of turning back to Christ and the teaching that goes like this:

Everyone who hates his brother is a murderer, and you know that no murderer has eternal life remaining in him. The way we came to know love was that he laid down his life for us; so we ought to lay down our lives for our brothers. If someone who has worldly means sees a brother in need and refuses him compassion, how can the love of God remain in him? Children, let us love not in word or speech but in deed and truth.

1 John 3:15-18

I further submit and suggest that invoking not only our guardian angels but the guardian angels of each other would be a rather good idea for us as individuals and for our nation.

Like all disciplines in life this would be only the first step.  For this to have a long term effect it will take time and there will be resistance both physically by those who stand to benefit from continued national anger and spiritually by the other side, so we should not overestimate the instant effect of this (that is in fact another temptation).

But if we want to change the direction of our country we have to change our own direction and this is the way to do it.


Well the year his half over and despite a horrible June (My worst traffic month in many years) We are still way over our pace at this time last year and slightly over the previous six months here at DaTechGuy Blog the first six months of last year.

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Today is the 4th of July there were a lot of parades going on, a lot of cookouts and as I type this there is a new Grille on my back deck purchased today just waiting to be used for the very first time and tonight there will be a ton of fireworks before the day ends and the people who work 3rd shift like me, go back to work to officially close the holiday.

Now there is nothing wrong with cookouts and fireworks and parades and I dearly hope that you enjoyed them, but when it comes down to it I think the best example of what the 4th of July is came from the three things that I do almost every Monday that I have or will do today.

  1. I said my prayers

There is a series of prayers that I do every day A sequence of invocations to mine and other guardian angels, a divine mercy chaplet for my City by ward, A special abbreviated 11 decade Rosary of my own design for particular intentions, A full 20 decade Rosary, A Chaplet of Divine Mercy for the sick and dying (usually before the blessed sacrament) and four scripture readings. On days when I work I start these prayers at midnight, Continue them at 3 AM and then finish them before I get home. On days I don’t work it’s a little less regimented and I do some of them on the fly but with rare exceptions I generally get them in every day.

  1. I went to Mass

Many non Catholics are not aware that while most Catholics only attend the obligatory Sunday mass or saturday vigil Catholics celebrate Mass every single day. This morning I went to the 8 AM mass at St. Bernard’s at St. Camillus parish. We heard the scripture for Monday of the Fourteenth Week in Ordinary Time a reading from Hosea, a snippet from Psalm 145 and the Gospel Matthew Chapter 9. The sermon was on the mercy of Christ. Because this is a holy year When mass was finished I went to St. Joseph Parish, went through the Holy Doors and then proceeded to the old South Street Cemetery to say the prayers to earn a Plenary Indulgence for a family buried there in the early 1800 before heading home.

  1. I’m going to Eucharistic Adoration.

The very moment this post is published I will be heading back to St. Bernard’s at St. Camillus to the Divine Mercy Chapel and take my weekly hour of Eucharistic Adoration which I do every Monday from 6 PM to 7 PM. I’ll pray, read scripture, read catholic material and just spend some time with Christ, present in the blessed sacrament.

Now all of those things seem rather ordinary but when you think about it it is the perfect way to celebrate the the of July.

One of the founding principles of this nation is religious liberty. The ability to worship openly and freely (or not) in public, in private and in church is a bedrock of our freedoms. And while many are doing their best to take that freedom away or put it in a box for their own purposes (Someone anyone find me the words freedom from religion in the Constitution) right now that freedom still exists.

And what is the use of a right if you don’t exercise it?

So today, if you are Catholic or Protestant take some time to thank God for all he has done for you, because in doing so you are celebrating the anniversary of our nation in the best way possible, by exercising your God given rights!

This week is the 65th Anniversary of the ordination of Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI and somehow that made three Catholic stories jumped out a me.

A very interesting interview with Archbishop Gänswein on Pope Benedict:

Later on, he also says he would sum up Benedict’s papacy with the word Veritas. He says: “It is about the fact that truth became man in Christ, that is for him [Benedict] the great theme of his life which reappeared again and again throughout his life in different variations and in different forms.” Gänswein adds that Benedict’s pontificate had “strengthened the Church in her foundations,” concluding with the words: “That will remain.”

A lot of times in the back and forth about the world we forget that in the end this fact is all that matters.

Yesterday Pope Francis & Pope Emeritus appeared together and I think the most significant part of the story was this:

Francis has recently dismissed new questions about the implications of Benedict’s resignation by insisting that there is only one pope — himself — and that Benedict had pledged his obedience to him on the day he resigned.

He told reporters this weekend he felt that Benedict “had my back” and was continuing to help the church through his prayers. He added he had heard that Benedict had even chastised some nostalgic faithful who were complaining about the “new pope.”

I may not know what the Holy Spirit is doing but I have faith that he does.

Finally here is a story about Francis that the MSM has left alone

The Vatican is summoning the heads of two more female religious orders so they can explain their “public dissent” from Church teaching.

The most recent communities to be summoned are the Sisters of St. Joseph of Carondelet (CSJ) and the Sisters of Charity of the Blessed Virgin Mary (BVM). The Vatican’s concern in both communities involves their dissent from Church teaching.

When Benedict did this the MSM was up in arms, I guess this one is just too hard for the media to spin Francis on this so they just let it be.

Today is the feast of Sts Peter and Paul and it’s very fitting that they share a feast day because the two men illustrate so well two specific natures of Christianity in General and the Catholic Church in Particular.

First look at the contrast, Peter the uneducated fisherman, the hothead, the loudmouth yet for all of those things is the first to declare Jesus as the Christ and is appointed the head of Jesus’ church on earth.

Paul the educated scholar, the pharisee, a Roman Citizen at the very top of the heap, a man well versed in the law yet so blind he could not see what a poor fisherman could until God literally wacks him upside the head and blinds him and a man sly enough to know how to play the Jewish factions against each other.

Two more different men you could not find yet both are united in being called by Christ and willing to accept that call despite horrible consequences.

That is the Catholic Church, the rich, the poor, the educated, the laborer, the sly, the hot tempered, all different types of people, united in the call of Christ and seeking to follow him.

Yet while this first nature reflects the Church well the 2nd which Peter and Paul had in common reflects it even better.

Paul the persecutor, who watched approvingly the stoning of Stephen, the man who admits openly that he does what he doesn’t want to do and works even harder for fear of losing his salvation.

And Peter, the man who up front tells Christ “Depart from me for I am a sinful man” the man who denies Christ Three times the man who even in his old age, by tradition has to be guilted by Christ to go back to Rome to face crucifixion.

The common thread, both were sinners, called to Christ and whose belief didn’t make them immune from sin or flaws, but made them able to overcome them through the forgiveness of Christ.

That is the best definition of a Christian there is, it’s also why those who attack Christians because they have flaws or sins demonstrate their ignorance. A Christian isn’t defined by lack of sin (though we do our best to avoid it) , a Christian is defined by striving toward Christ’s perfection despite our sins and flaws, sometimes falling, sometimes failing but always getting back up, asking for Christ’s pardon and carrying on

One of the things that is axiomatic about Christianity is the ability of God to create good in the aftermath of great evil in that such an act moves people to acts of kindness, repentance and mercy. A great example of this comes via Stephen Green at Instapundit came from Instapundit yesterday linking to this CNN story:

“As we deplaned, EVERY SINGLE PERSON STOPPED TO OFFER HER THEIR CONDOLENCES. Some just said they were sorry, some touched her hand, some hugged her, some cried with her. But every single person stopped to speak to her, and not a single person was impatient at the slower deplaning process”, she wrote.
“We can confirm that these are our crewmembers, and that the story appears to be an accurate account of one of our flights from yesterday morning,” Jetblue spokeswoman Morgan Johnston told CNN.

However while the graces of God are active and working the other side is also busy at work hoping to exploit an already evil act as a catalyst for sin some of them obvious and others more subtle.

The first and most obvious is the conflation of a person’s potential sin with the state of their soul.

There is a reason why he Church doesn’t specify any particular person being in Hell, because a person has till their very last moment of life to accept the hand that God offers.  To presume the damnation of a person is the Judging that Christ is referring to in the gospel.

Even worse than this temptation are those who actually celebrated the murder of those in Orlando based on their presumed sins.  To celebrate the violent murder of others over their sins not only makes the mistake that Jesus warned about those killed in the collapse of the tower of Siloam but is risking the most dangerous sin of all:  Spiritual Pride, or as it’s often called today virtue signaling.  

Pride is the worst of the deadly sins but spiritual pride is undoubtedly the Devil’s favorite, not only does it deceive the one committing the sin making repentance less likely, but such pride tend to chase people away from God by a horrible example making it doubly productive for him.

It’s a cowardly thing because it’s done to avoid the critique that can come with the one task that can make a difference, engaging someone with love.

But while this is one extreme of Orlando temptation there is a 2nd style just as dangerous, but less obvious, that our enemy tries to tempt us toward, confusing sympathy for the victims of a terrible with excusing, tolerating or even celebrating mortal sin.

It takes very little effort to go along with the world, to suddenly say that sin is not sin, or to go along with the parade and celebrate mortal sin and get the platitudes of the media.

And even those who do not go so far might choose to keep silent, to not make waves, to suggest that stating or teaching clear church doctrine is not the right thing to do because it might cause offense, but Christ warns us that rejection by the world is standard procedure for a Christian.

The irony of course is that like the other extreme, this is also an example of spiritual pride, virtue signaling and cowardice, rather than engaging with love one doesn’t engage at all.

In both cases the Devil wins and you lose, which is the entire idea.

No matter which extreme you are tempted to the thing to remember is this:  No matter what people say on twitter,  love wins not when you enable mortal sin to the damnation to the plaudits of the crowd, love wins when you engage a person, with patience and love, to help them overcome it.

You might be rejected by the elders, the elites, the betters and even those who rule but that’s OK,  because if you are, you’re in good company.


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One of the interesting things we have seen in our immigration debate is the corruption of language.

Suddenly the words “Illegal immigration” is not allowed even though the person is clearly breaking the law thus doing something “illegal” and the law this person is breaking is the law on “immigration”

Suddenly a Somali immigrant who settles near St. Paul Minnesota who is on trial for terror becomes a Minnesota Man

But the most amusing term of the lot, the term that we heard over and over in the primary season and one I suspect we will run into a lot during the election year is “Path to legal status”.

To the speaker using the phrase the purpose is to differentiate position of the person using it from “Amnesty” which is entirely different but the reality is the actual purpose of this phrase is to keep the listener from understanding that a “Path to legal status” is in fact amnesty.

So problem, how do you explain to the person being spun by the words “Path to legal status” that this is in fact Amnesty.

My solution? The Doctrine of Purgatory.

For those not familiar with Catholic Doctrine Purgatory is the place the temporal cost is paid for sins whose eternal cost have been already been forgiven, it’s where a soul is perfected for heaven.

Once that cost is paid and the soul has reached that state of perfect love either by either by indulgences earned during life, prayers or indulgences offered by the faithful for them after death, or through the purification process of purgatory then the soul is ready for Heaven.

Is this not the same thing as the “path to legal status” promises?

A “Path to legal status” by definition earns that a person is not currently legal. So the person has violated the immigration law, and through a process that might involve the paying of a fine and back taxes, which can be paid by either the person or someone else, and/or the waiting for a period of time, they at last achieve full legal status.

Why is this important? because every single soul is purgatory, no matter if they spend a single hour or till the end of time in Purgatory, those souls are saved, they have accepted the cost Christ paid in blood for their sins and sought the mercy he offers for their offenses.

Thus the souls in Purgatory have received the Amnesty that Christ has given them.

And that what the Path to Citizenship is, no matter how large the fine, no matter how long the wait, in the end the person is forgiven for their legal offenses.

Thus the persons who have received a “path to legal status” have received amnesty that the government has given them.

No amount of linguistic trickery will change it.

Color me completely unsurprised by this story out of Spain:

Cardinal Antonio Cañizares Llovera of Valencia, Spain, faces criminal charges for a speech in which he said that gender theory is “the most insidious and destructive ideology of humanity in all history.” 

The Spanish Network of Help to Refugees filed a criminal complaint against the cardinal, saying that his statement was a hate crime. The group charged that Cardinal Cañizares “is an ultra-conservative trying to subvert the constitutional order.” Under Spanish law, law-enforcement officials are required to conduct an investigation when such a charge is filed.

Cardinal Cañizares was the prefect of the Vatican’s Congregation for Divine Worship before his appointment in 2014 as Archbishop of Valencia.

Religious freedom is likely going to be a thing of the past if our liberal friends have their say (except for course of Islam as they fear being slaughtered by them )  and to profess Christ and to teach scripture will be condemned by all “right thinking” people.

But there is a bright side:

Blessed are you when they insult you and persecute you and utter every kind of evil against you (falsely) because of me.  Rejoice and be glad, for your reward will be great in heaven. Thus they persecuted the prophets who were before you.  Matt 5:11-12

and as Jesus told the apostles this is part of the job description

If the world hates you, realize that it hated me first.  If you belonged to the world, the world would love its own; but because you do not belong to the world, and I have chosen you out of the world, the world hates you.  Remember the word I spoke to you,  ‘No slave is greater than his master.’ If they persecuted me, they will also persecute you.

If they kept my word, they will also keep yours.  And they will do all these things to you on account of my name, because they do not know the one who sent me.  If I had not come and spoken to them, they would have no sin; but as it is they have no excuse for their sin.  Whoever hates me also hates my Father.  John 15:18-23

As I’ve said before, we’re going to shortly find out who actually believes and who does not.  I hope I measure up.

 

I’ve written about the indulgences available for the dead in purgatory during the year of Mercy by passing through the designated holy doors and my quest as a daily mass attendee to obtain as many as possible while thru mid November.

Yesterday for the first time during Pope Francis’ declared Year of Mercy circumstances I found myself attending mass at a designated Church of pilgrimage rather than simply passing through the doors either before or after attending mass at my own parish to obtain the available indulge for a soul in purgatory.

The parish St. Joseph’s in Fitchburg which was built in an area once populated by the French Canadian population that came down during the thriving factory days of the city, was once much smaller but the building was expanded after World War 2 and now has the largest capacity of the remaining churches in the city, but even with the consolidation was less than half full for mass yesterday.

However even with that lesser crowd as a sat in the “Old” church with the priest’s back to me (the layout is a Cross with the altar at the center of the “t”) It occurred to me that every person receiving Holy Communion at that mass had automatically fulfilled most of the requirements for a year of Mercy indulgence, meaning that there were hundreds of potential indulgences dispensed at that mass, several times for all the masses each week at St. Joseph’s.

That meant that the congregation at St Joe’s had the potential to easily secure indulgences for every person buried at St. Joseph’s cemetery down the road during the course of the Year of Mercy with plenty to spare with almost no alteration to their regular routine, all that would be necessary was sacramental confession once every two weeks!

That was a comforting thought that was followed by a sobering question: How many of those in attendance were actually bothering to do so?

That question nagged at me, and it reminded me of a sad story concerning a wonderful charity named Angel Tree that obtains Christmas gifts for the children of those in jail.

There was a fellow in prison who had six children by six different mothers who had not heard of Angel Tree. He was informed of it by a fellow inmate who had heard about it through the prison ministry. He was told that all he had to do was go and fill out the forms and each of his children would receive a Christmas gift that year.

Weeks passed and nothing happened and the deadline was upon them. His fellow came up to him on that last day saying that if he wanted gifts for his kids he would have to come to the service that evening and fill out the paperwork otherwise it would be too late.

He declined, opting for a card game. His kids got nothing.

Right now in every Catholic diocese in the word there is a Holy Door. In the United States there are hundreds of them. If you are in the congregation at the designated church containing that door you have the potential to earn the indulgence for a soul in purgatory on a weekly or even daily basis.

The year of Mercy ends November 20th meaning that as of today if you go to daily mass you can secure potentially 168 indulgences between now and then. If you attend mass weekly at once of those locations you have the potential to earn 24 indulgences before the year closes.

I submit that it’s a horrible waste to not take advantage of this time and even more so if you attend one of the churches on that list. In the words of James T. Kirk

Take the time and earn one of those indulgences. A soul in purgatory will thank you

The Christian ideal has not been tried and found wanting; it has been found difficult and left untried.

G. K. Chesterton

Yesterday I saw the following link at Drudge

Outbreak of super STD difficult to contain…

It linked to the following Daily Mirror story titled thus:

Why outbreak of super gonorrhoea is proving difficult to contain

which talks about a particularly nasty drug resistant version of Gonorrhoea

As the gonorrhoea bacterium can resist our most powerful antibiotics when used alone, two drugs, ­azithromycin and ceftriaxone, are used in combination.

However, resistance to azithromycin has developed and is spreading, and experts fear it’s only a matter of time before ceftriaxone fails too.

Now given these facts one might presume that both the Drudge headline and the Mirror one are absolutely correct.

They’re not.

Actually the outbreak of “super STD’s” is very easy to contain and the solution to avoiding said STD’s it just involves a solution different than that advised by the medical community

Dr Gwenda Hughes, the head of the sexually transmitted infections unit at Public Health England, said: “We cannot afford to be complacent. If strains emerge resistant to both azithromycin and ­ceftriaxone, treatment options would be limited as there is currently no new antibiotic available to treat the infection.”

She’s encouraging people to practise safe sex to minimise the risk of STIs.

You see the solution to keeping this disease from spreading is not to have sex with infected people.

That’s all it takes.

In fact there is an organization that has been suggesting such a thing for centuries:

233 The virtue of chastity comes under the cardinal virtue of temperance, which seeks to permeate the passions and appetites of the senses with reason.

2342 Self-mastery is a long and exacting work. One can never consider it acquired once and for all. It presupposes renewed effort at all stages of life.128 The effort required can be more intense in certain periods, such as when the personality is being formed during childhood and adolescence.

and has also pushed solutions that don’t involve abstinence from sex

2360 Sexuality is ordered to the conjugal love of man and woman. In marriage the physical intimacy of the spouses becomes a sign and pledge of spiritual communion. Marriage bonds between baptized persons are sanctified by the sacrament.

2361 “Sexuality, by means of which man and woman give themselves to one another through the acts which are proper and exclusive to spouses, is not something simply biological, but concerns the innermost being of the human person as such. It is realized in a truly human way only if it is an integral part of the love by which a man and woman commit themselves totally to one another until death.”

So if you want to avoid this or any other sexually transmitted disease, if you and your spouse avoid premarital sex and then avoid sex with anyone other than your spouse you will not catch it.

If you want your kids to avoid it teach and encourage them to do the same.

And if we had the culture we did at the time of my birth, that would be the very first message that health professionals would be giving while still pursuing medical solutions for those who don’t follow this advice.

Alas, the need to discourage any remnants of the Christian Culture that once dominated England overrides any possible benefit to the population of arresting the spread of the superbug.

Closing thought, Does it never occur to people that the laws God has given us are not for his benefit but for ours?


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10th Doctor: [to Capt Jack]  I can’t help it. I’m a Time Lord. It’s instinct; it’s in my guts. You’re a fixed point in time and space; you’re a fact.

Doctor Who  Utopia 2007

Father Damien Karras: I think it might be helpful if I gave you some background on the different personalities Regan has manifested. So far, I’d say there seem to be three. She’s convinced…

Father Merrin: There is only one.

The Exorcist 1973

One of the things that people find most amazing about the left is the war on objective truth.

There was a time that “Free Speech” was all about:  “Speaking truth to power” but we’ve reached the point that not only does the left not speak the truth but they run away when confronted by it because objective truth being true is tough to counter, to wit:

University of California-Santa Barbara senior Andrew Cavarno decided to challenge the widespread claim that 1-in-5 college females are victims of sexual assault. With the support of Young Americans for Liberty (YAL), Carvano scheduled an event called, “Is There a Rape Epidemic? Rape Hysteria, Due Process, and Free Speech.” Here is what happened:

This event was intended to be a panel discussion, with propositions from both sides of the argument. Yet, we have found it incredibly difficult to find anyone who is willing to present the affirmative position — that there is indeed a rape epidemic on college campuses, and that the measures taken by the universities to combat these problems are therefore fair / justified. We have contacted every single feminist studies professor at UCSB… but none are willing to present the affirmative position. In the words of the chair of the Feminist Studies Department, Professor Laury Oaks, “It is important to not have debates.”

This kind of thing would normally shock, much like the new decree in Massachusetts that if someone is delusional enough to mutalate themselves for the sake of ducking an objectie reality that they can’t cope with, that businesses MUST accommodate said delusion or face the full penalty of the law, but when one considers the real target of the left it is completely unsurprising because all of this insanity comes from a single root.

The rejection of God.

We often hear the phrase that “God is love” and while that is true there is something more basic to God, something that is revealed in his first encounter with Moses

“But,” said Moses to God, “when I go to the Israelites and say to them, ‘The God of your fathers has sent me to you,’ if they ask me, ‘What is his name?’ what am I to tell them?”

God replied, “I am who am.” Then he added, “This is what you shall tell the Israelites: I AM sent me to you.” 

Exodus 3:13-14

and is confirmed by Christ.

Jesus, knowing everything that was going to happen to him, went out and said to them, “Whom are you looking for?”

They answered him, “Jesus the Nazorean.”  He said to them, “I AM.” Judas his betrayer was also with them.

John 18:4-5

The Name I AM is the expression of an objective truth.  I exist.  In that same way Christ answer to those about to take him to kill him is a statement of fact, not only that he is, but WHO he is.

Before all of the other attributes of God is his eternal existence, a being that has ever been, or as a Doctor Who fan would put it, a fixed point, a fact.

That’s why it is no coincidence that before the rise of a movement that rejects objective fact could grow, Christianity and the culture of Christianity had to go.

Because God is the primary fact, I AM, and once that fact is tossed away suddenly you can have 50 genders on facebook, you can decide killing a child is just like getting your car towed and you can lie with impunity to the american people without cost.

Because one objective truth is gone anything and everything is allowed.

That why the war on truth had to start with a war on God, because only with the withdrawal of objective truth can all else happen.  Stacy McCain again:

logic requires us to point out that, if God exists, His existence is independent of any individual’s belief. Facts are facts, and you are free to believe whatever you want, but your belief does not alter the facts. The truth is still true. Furthermore, nature abhors a vacuum and, in consequence of the modern assault on Christianity, we constantly see proof of a familiar phenomenon: “When men choose not to believe in God, they do not thereafter believe in nothing, they then become capable of believing in anything.”

Alas for the left, and our poor country that has embraced this nonsense reality tends to reassert itself at the most inconvenient time, and when it does, I suspect it will be rather painful.


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DePaul SAC building
DePaul Student Center

By John Ruberry

“Hey there,” I said to a co-worker who is a DePaul student a couple of days ago, “a friend of mine was arrested at your college for videotaping a protest.”

That friend was Jeremy Segal, also known as Rebel Pundit, and he was briefly jailed by the Chicago Police for his alleged crimes.

Are no other crimes in Chicago? I am writing this entry during Memorial Day weekend–as of now 40 people have been shot.

“Oh yeah,” the co-worker replied, “they were protesting that speaker because he wasn’t telling the truth.”

“That speaker” was Milo Yiannopoulos, the tech editor at Breitbart, which of course is a conservative leaning news site.

Outside of some schtick, I’m not aware of anything that Yiannopolous, who is also known as Nero, has said that is false. And while his fight in the Gamergate controversy has been real, it’s also best not to take everything Milo says too seriously, especially since he came to Chicago because Catholic-in-Name-Only DePaul was a stop on his Dangerous Faggot Tour.

However, one of Milo’s alleged falsehoods is his debunking the gender-gap in wages. Click here to read his take on this sacred leftist rallying point.

Nero spoke for about 45 minute–until some whistle-blowing Black Lives Matter radicals took over the stage. After some chanting and screaming, Yiannopolous was forced to end his speech.

“When fascism comes to America, it will be wrapped in the flag and carrying a cross,” is a quote that has been credited to both Huey Long and Sinclair Lewis.

Ayers and Dohrn Chicago home
Ayers and Dohrn’s Chicago home

Here’s a 21st century version that I am crediting to myself: “When fascism comes to America, it will be to protect people from hearing speech that they don’t like.”

Leftist teachers and professors have conditioned millions of gullible youngsters that statements and ideas that they don’t agree with are in reality offensive and false. The bolder among them–these are the disciples of Barack Obama’s pals Bernardine Dohrn and Bill Ayers–believe such speech should be banned.

Really?

Just two days ago a DePaul socialism professor, Shu-Ju Ada Cheng–oops, I meant a sociology professor–claims to have resigned her sinecure over the half-hearted apology from DePaul’s president, the Rev. Dennis Holtschneider, over the Yiannopolous debacle.

But while Nero got his half-baked apology, Cheng burned.

“To believe that universities are simply neutral platforms for ‘equal’ exchanges of ideas, the so-called free speech rooted in the market ideology, is delusional,” she wrote on her Facebook page. This leftist continued, “that positional objectivity ends up reinforcing the exact inequalities and dominant ideologies upon which this institution is built.”

We’ve gone from the Free Speech Movement at the University of California in 1964 to free speech being “delusional” in 2015 at DePaul.

A totalitarian America is not a paranoid fear. Because millions of Americans believe in the putrid radical rubbish being force-fed in schools and colleges.

Are you familiar with the Thomas Klocek case? Click here to read about DePaul’s 2005 attack on Klocek’s free speech rights.

Oh, one more item about Chicago crimes. Milo spoke at the DePaul Student Center, which is pictured on top. Two days before Yiannopoulos’ aborted address two DePaul students were robbed at gunpoint by three assailants a quarter mile from the Student Center–two of the thugs are still at large.

But the cops decided to arrest Rebel Pundit.

John Ruberry regularly blogs at Marathon Pundit.


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