Does anyone for one moment believe that the same Fr. John Jenkins, who had no problem with Barack Obama, Joe Biden or Wenday Davis despite their direct opposition and active efforts against the teaching of the Catholic church, would have shown the slightest hesitation to invite Hillary Clinton her to speak at the 2017 commencement if she had been elected?

I’m old enough to remember when Notre Dame was a Catholic College.

There is a lot to be said for this piece by Stacy McCain titled #LashEquality: @CoverGirl Promotes Transgender Agenda in Commercials. Its discussion of history, references to scripture, celebration of his ancient ancestors (Being of Sicilian ancestry from a family that lived next to a volcano (Mt. Etna) I can go back to the mid 1800’s but before that is a mystery, particularly since everyone from the vikings to the Spanish to the arabs conquered Sicily during the course of history) and his defense of normalcy which everyone seems to be terrified to articulating.

But there are two things in this piece that need highlighting and a clarification added to complete the picture being offered by him.

The first the opinion of the greatest generation of the rebellion of their children most of whom still foolishly think they were and are smarter then their parents who conquered two of the finest militaries in history yet had the Christian character, to with the entire world at their feet, not to enslave it

the “Greatest Generation” knew what price had been paid for our freedom. The troops who came home from that war then fathered the “Baby Boom.” When their children reached adolescence, however, many rebelled against America’s patriotic and religious heritage, and by the time I started high school in 1973, the so-called “Sexual Revolution” had been raging for nearly a decade. Grown-ups strongly disapproved of the whole “hippie” youth culture. Our parents and teachers, our coaches and preachers were in unanimous agreement about the need to suppress this social upheaval that had erupted, the cause of which they believed to be either (a) Communism or (b) Satan, insofar as Communism and Satan weren’t the same thing.

It is my opinion that my generation, the baby boomers are the worst generation in the history of this country and possibly the world and that we as a generation for the good of humanity can’t die off fast enough and take our self centered narcissism, self defined virtue and complete ignorance of the wisdom and experience of our parents and the giants who came before them with us.

Secondly it’s worth highlighting Stacy’s statement concerning his own youthful rebellion (emphasis mine)

In high school, I was just a teenager who wanted to be a cool dude, and among my hoodlum buddies, being a cool dude meant getting high and growing your hair long, because that’s what all the cool chicks were into. So I was as far-out as I could possibly get away with, and I got away with a lot more than I ever got caught with. Could I blame all this on “peer pressure”? Maybe, except that I was an active agent of evil, rather than a passive participant. My extensive adolescent experience in the ways of sin — and all the consequences of evil that I witnessed with my own eyes in the ensuing years — left me quite cynical toward the kind of enthusiasm James Charles expresses about the “amazing progressions with gay rights, gender inclusivity and self-expression.”

I can not emphasize the importance of this paragraph because it does two critical things.

  • It acknowledges acts of evil done and witnessed by him
  • Rather than making an excuse for said evil, he takes responsibility for it.

One could call it a great example of the Penitential Rite of the Catholic church

I confess to almighty God
And to you, my brothers and sisters,
That I have greatly sinned
In my thoughts and in my words,
In what I have done and in what I have
Failed to do,
Through my fault, through my fault,
Through my most grievous fault;
Therefore I ask blessed Mary ever-Virgin,
All the Angels and Saints,
And you, my brothers and sisters,
To pray for me to the Lord our God.

That self awareness is a gift from God that should be treasured by him and mimicked by others whenever possible.

Now having highlighted these two bits let’s turn to the part that needs clarification.

Stacy quotes one of his favorite passages from Deuteronomy 30.  As I am quoting Stacy’s piece I’ll stick with his protestant translation here rather than the one on the Vatican site I would normally use

See, I have set before thee this day life and good, and death and evil; In that I command thee this day to love the Lord thy God, to walk in his ways, and to keep his commandments and his statutes and his judgments, that thou mayest live and multiply: and the Lord thy God shall bless thee in the land whither thou goest to possess it. But if thine heart turn away, so that thou wilt not hear, but shalt be drawn away, and worship other gods, and serve them; I denounce unto you this day, that ye shall surely perish, and that ye shall not prolong your days upon the land, whither thou passest over Jordan to go to possess it. I call heaven and earth to record this day against you, that I have set before you life and death, blessing and cursing: therefore choose life, that both thou and thy seed may live . .

He follows up with these two paragraphs near the end of his piece:

There are still quite a few Americans who believe in the Lord whose anger is kindled against those who turn away from him, and we have already tolerated enough “gender inclusivity and self-expression” that it’s a wonder God has not already destroyed us for this “amazing progression.”

America has had enough. Our ancestors did not establish this nation with the expectation that their descendants would squander their precious inheritance of God’s blessing. The men who died fighting to gain a foothold on that beach at Normandy did not give their lives so that America could sink into decadence, insanity and perversion.

And here lies the part that needs clarification here.  Stacy gives a lot of quotes from that good Old Testament but is missing some key ones from a slightly newer one.  Like Matthew

As Jesus passed on from there, he saw a man named Matthew sitting at the customs post. He said to him, “Follow me.” And he got up and followed him. While he was at table in his house,  many tax collectors and sinners came and sat with Jesus and his disciples. The Pharisees saw this and said to his disciples, “Why does your teacher eat with tax collectors and sinners?” He heard this and said, “Those who are well do not need a physician, but the sick do. Go and learn the meaning of the words, ‘I desire mercy, not sacrifice.’ I did not come to call the righteous but sinners.

Matthew 9:9-13

And Mark

Jesus looked around and said to his disciples, “How hard it is for those who have wealth to enter the kingdom of God!” The disciples were amazed at his words. So Jesus again said to them in reply, “Children, how hard it is to enter the kingdom of God! It is easier for a camel to pass through (the) eye of (a) needle than for one who is rich to enter the kingdom of God.” They were exceedingly astonished and said among themselves, “Then who can be saved?” Jesus looked at them and said, “For human beings it is impossible, but not for God. All things are possible for God.

Mark 10:23-27

And Luke

“Now a man there named Zacchaeus, who was a chief tax collector and also a wealthy man, was seeking to see who Jesus was; but he could not see him because of the crowd, for he was short in stature. So he ran ahead and climbed a sycamore tree in order to see Jesus, who was about to pass that way. When he reached the place, Jesus looked up and said to him, “Zacchaeus, come down quickly, for today I must stay at your house.” And he came down quickly and received him with joy. When they all saw this, they began to grumble, saying, “He has gone to stay at the house of a sinner.”  But Zacchaeus stood there and said to the Lord, “Behold, half of my possessions, Lord, I shall give to the poor, and if I have extorted anything from anyone I shall repay it four times over.” And Jesus said to him, “Today salvation has come to this house because this man too is a descendant of Abraham. For the Son of Man has come to seek and to save what was lost.”

Luke 19:2-10

And John

Then the scribes and the Pharisees brought a woman who had been caught in adultery and made her stand in the middle. They said to him, “Teacher, this woman was caught in the very act of committing adultery. Now in the law, Moses commanded us to stone such women. So what do you say?” They said this to test him, so that they could have some charge to bring against him. Jesus bent down and began to write on the ground with his finger. But when they continued asking him, he straightened up and said to them, “Let the one among you who is without sin be the first to throw a stone at her.” Again he bent down and wrote on the ground. And in response, they went away one by one, beginning with the elders. So he was left alone with the woman before him. Then Jesus straightened up and said to her, “Woman, where are they? Has no one condemned you?” She replied, “No one, sir.” Then Jesus said, “Neither do I condemn you. Go, (and) from now on do not sin any more.”

John 8:3-11

Christianity is a religion of forgiveness and redemption and every single soul from James Charles to Bob Iger to  Stacy to mine and yours is of value to God.  That same merciful God who sacrificed his son for the forgiveness of sins will give each soul a lifetime to repent of their sins and be forgiven.  As Christ said to St Faustina:

Write: before I come as a just Judge, I first open wide the door of My mercy. 

Diary of St. Faustina

Stacy expresses surprise that God has not already destroyed us, But did not the Knights of Columbus offer a novena before the election for the country asking for God’s blessing and mercy that was prayed in churches all over the country?  Do not contemplative sisters and brothers pray unceasingly for the country the world and for the intentions of individuals?  Do not individuals like myself offer daily rosaries for the country asking since February for Justice Scalia and since April for Mother Angelica to join in these prayers for our land?  And do not relatives friends of those who have been deceived by the world and the culture pray continually for their salvation?  After all do you think it was just blind luck that Stacy himself, turned away from the admittedly evil path he once pursued?  And are not others even now evangelizing those who have fallen away?

The bottom line is there have been many times when the power of evil, and error and sin have seemed insurmountable, yet the faithful still exist, and thrive and the Holy Spirit still calls those who have rejected him.

“If you’re there, you have to help me.”

Those are the words that poet Sally Read said to an icon of Jesus in 2010. Read, a British poet and atheist, had stopped into a church in Santa Marinella, Italy. She felt burdened. Her young daughter was having health issues. Her husband Fabio was enduring some stress at work.

“There was this incredible experience where this presence almost came down, and my tears just stopped, just dried,” Read tells CNSNews.com. “I felt almost physically carried up. It was as if someone walked into the room. I knew this person. I knew that I was a Christian.”

Up to that point Read, now 46, had been an atheist. “I was brought up an atheist,” Read notes in her just-published memoir, “Night’s Bright Darkness: A Modern Conversion Story.” “At ten I could tell you that religion was the opiate of the masses; it was [driven] into me to never kneel before anyone or anything…As a young woman I could quote Christopher Hitchens and enough of the Bible to scoff at.”

As Pope Francis has said God never tires of forgiving us and as long as that potential is there the work of salvation will continue and we can and must aid it by our prayers.

Because even with this clarification Stacy point stands as evidenced by Christ words to Sister Faustina that followed his remark about the door of mercy.

He who refuses to pass through the door of My mercy must pass through the door of My justice…

I pray to God that I and others will acquire and retain the wisdom to choose the door of mercy in our lifetimes.

As you likely know today is the First Sunday of Advent and the first Sunday of the liturgical year for Catholics which officially began yesterday with the Advent vigil mass.

But I suspect some of you might not know that the previous liturgical year didn’t end Friday, but on Saturday morning. The Daily mass celebrated Saturday Morning was the final mass of the Church’s year. It’s also the liturgical anniversary (vs the actual anniversary) of the death of my devout Aunt Lucy who died between the masses so I do my best to make sure I don’t miss it.

So yesterday after work I headed to my church and immediately noticed five unfamiliar faces. A group of nuns in white habits with black veils were at my church, first crowded into our divine mercy chapel and then sitting together at mass.

I didn’t recognize any of the nuns so when mass was over and one finished her prayers I greeted her and asked what order they were from. She told me they were Dominican Nuns of Saint Cecilia from Nashville Tennessee who teach school in Providence Rhode Island.  They were in the area for a hiking trip.

That they were devout was obvious but what jumped out at me the most, every single one of them looked young enough to be my daughter (I’m 53).

This was quite ironic because just a few months ago our parish celebrated the anniversary of the founding of our elementary school by the Sisters of the Presentation. About a dozen of those sisters turned up for the mass as invited guests and there were two things about them that were in stark contrast to the Dominican Sisters at the Saturday Mass.

  • Not a single one of them was in a nun’s habit.
  • Every single one of them was old enough to be my mother

Now I don’t question for one moment the devotion of those older nuns who did yeoman service for the school before they were replaced by lay teachers as they retired but I have yet to see a group of nuns that have abandoned the habit who are not dying out.  As they abandoned the habit, vocations abandoned them.

Meanwhile the sisters in Nashville which did not go down that path apparently has so many vocations that they can be spared to go all the way to New England to teach.  From their website:

The community has continued to experience God’s blessing of new vocations. This past summer, five young sisters professed perpetual vows, with 13 others making first profession. Twelve received the Dominican habit. With the entrance of 15 postulants in August, approximately 50 sisters are presently in the initial four years of formation. The Congregation now totals nearly 300 sisters, the largest number in its history. With this gift also comes the challenge of providing for the needs of a growing community.

It seems at least in the church the orthodox are winning the culture war.

Closing thought.  There is a very devout woman at our parish named Joan.  She has been active in the parish for decades (In fact she was my wife CCD teacher 35 years ago).  Joan is in her mid 80’s and not only makes mass daily but is involved in multiple parish activities on a regular basis.  I remember her being at that Anniversary Sunday mass months ago and mentioned at the time that she was indistinguishable from any of the nuns in attendance.

Yesterday I noticed Joan was in attendance at the mass with the Dominican Sisters.  Devout though she is nobody in attendance would have mistaken her for one of those nuns.

Update: Welcome readers of the Canon 212 blog. Have a peek around. My first short book on the faith. The Hail Mary as Explained to Protestants, is awaiting the Imprimatur from my local Bishop before I go to publish. If you would like to be notified when it is available fill out the form below and I’ll let you know when I have a release date. I am always accepting prayer requests as well, feel free to leave one even if you don’t want the book


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As the year of Mercy Closes Pope Francis has made some significant moves in the context of mercy in an Apostolic Letter:  Mercy and Peace

16. The Jubilee now ends and the Holy Door is closed. But the door of mercy of our heart continues to remain wide open. We have learned that God bends down to us (cf. Hos 11:4) so that we may imitate him in bending down to our brothers and sisters. The yearning of so many people to turn back to the house of the Father, who awaits their return, has also been awakened by heartfelt and generous testimonies to God’s love. The Holy Door that we have crossed in this Jubilee Year has set us on the path of charity, which we are called to travel daily with fidelity and joy. It is the road of mercy, on which we meet so many of our brothers and sisters who reach out for someone to take their hand and become a companion on the way. The Jubilee now ends and the Holy Door is closed. But the door of mercy of our heart continues to remain wide open. We have learned that God bends down to us (cf. Hos 11:4) so that we may imitate him in bending down to our brothers and sisters. The yearning of so many people to turn back to the house of the Father, who awaits their return, has also been awakened by heartfelt and generous testimonies to God’s love. The Holy Door that we have crossed in this Jubilee Year has set us on the path of charity, which we are called to travel daily with fidelity and joy. It is the road of mercy, on which we meet so many of our brothers and sisters who reach out for someone to take their hand and become a companion on the way.

Ironically while the Pope is pronouncing truths of the faith Ed Morrissey is also pronouncing a basic truth when he says:

I’ve often joked that the four words in the media that most fill Catholics with dread are, “Today, Pope Francis said…” That’s not because the pontiff says things that are dreadful; it’s because we know that we’ll have to spend most of the day explaining what the media got wrong, and what Pope Frances actually meant.I’ve often joked that the four words in the media that most fill Catholics with dread are, “Today, Pope Francis said…” That’s not because the pontiff says things that are dreadful; it’s because we know that we’ll have to spend most of the day explaining what the media got wrong, and what Pope Frances actually meant.

Ed is very right and I would recommend everyone read what the Pope actually wrote vs what others (particularly in the MSM) claim he is stating.

I’d particularly like to bring to your attention this paragraph on the sacrament of Confession addressed to priests: (emphasis in original)

10. I invite priests once more to prepare carefully for the ministry of confession, which is a true priestly mission. I thank all of you from the heart for your ministry, and I ask you to be welcoming to all, witnesses of fatherly love whatever the gravity of the sin involved, attentive in helping penitents to reflect on the evil they have done, clear in presenting moral principles, willing to walk patiently beside the faithful on their penitential journey, far-sighted in discerning individual cases and generous in dispensing God’s forgiveness. Just as Jesus chose to remain silent in order to save the woman caught in adultery from the sentence of death, so every priest in the confessional should be open-hearted, since every penitent is a reminder that he himself is a sinner, but also a minister of mercy.

Note the following lines:

attentive in helping penitents to reflect on the evil they have done,

clear in presenting moral principles

willing to walk patiently beside the faithful on their penitential journey

All of these statements involve an important principle that our friends in the media like to obscure:

The clear acknowledgement that a person has committed an evil act which separates them from God and the understanding that said person needs to know why said act was wrong and be penitential concerning it.

Now that fact doesn’t change the fact that regardless of the evil involved God’s mercy trumps it as the pope also says: (emphasis mine)

Let us recall with renewed pastoral zeal another saying of the Apostle: “God has reconciled us to himself through Christ and has entrusted to us the message of reconciliation” (2 Cor 5:18). We were the first to be forgiven in view of this ministry, made witnesses at first hand of the universality of God’s forgiveness. No law or precept can prevent God from once more embracing the son who returns to him, admitting that he has done wrong but intending to start his life anew.

Note the end of that sentence, it notes that there is a condition for the mercy of God, that being one admits he has done wrong and intends to start his life anew.  This is reflected in the act of Contrition that a pennant says before being absolved.

O, my God, I am heartily sorry for having offended you. I detest all my sins because of your just punishment, but most of all because they offend you, my God, who are all-good and deserving of all my love. I firmly resolve, with the help of Your grace, to sin no more and to avoid the near occasion of sin.

The wording varies but the intent is the same, I did wrong, I’m sorry and I intend to not do wrong again.

Humans being weak, that intention will often not be enough to overcome temptation in the short run, if it was then there would be no need for weekly confessions in church, but that intent and acknowledgement is the key here, and without that acknowledgement & intent to repent the search for Mercy will be in vain.

At Don Surber’s site he notes that my fellow catholics had a lot to do with Donald Trump winning the presidency

Catholics got the last laugh as they swung nine points moving from Democrats (Obama won Catholics by two) to Trump (he won Catholics by seven).

as did Crux:

But out of sight of most media reports, religious concerns also seem to have played an important role in Trump’s win. Whether religious voters were embracing Trump or blocking Clinton, there seems to be a clear political message in the result, which is that people of faith cannot be ignored, disparaged or taken for granted.

Coming on the heels of an administration known for court battles with faith-based businesses, the U.S. bishops and other religious leaders over policies such as the HHS contraception mandate, which includes sterilization procedures and drugs critics regard as abortion-inducing, revelations seen as indicative of team Clinton’s hostility to aspects of evangelical Protestantism and the Catholic faith certainly didn’t help.

Nor did a Catholic on the bottom half of her ticket who took public policy positions at odds with the teaching of his Church on issues including abortion, the death penalty and marriage.
Nor, of course, did leaked emails from her campaign manager discussing using political operatives to change Catholic doctrine from within the Church.

But for my money the thing that made the difference for the non cafeteria Catholic was the third debate and this question

One of the things I’ve seen over the last 30 years are a group of elderly catholics Democrats who cut their teeth on JFK who seemed totally oblivious to the party rejecting faithful Catholics.

Even as the party became more and more hostile to the faith they remained in blissful ignorance, never getting the image out of their head of Democrats as the party of JFK and confident that all the talk by people like me who had left the party over their hostility to my faith were mistaken or misguided.

Then they saw, for the very first time ever in a presidential debate, a question on abortion that actually illustrated the extreme position of the Democrats. When they saw Chris Wallace question Hillary Clinton on late term abortion (2:20), heard Hillary defend it, and then listened as Donald Trump said:

Well I think it’s terrible. If you go with what Hillary is saying, in the 9th month you can take the baby and rip the baby out of the womb of the mother, just prior to the birth of the baby. Now you can say that that’s Ok and Hillary can say that’s ok but it’s not OK with me.

At that moment the mask was torn off and while that kind of thing wasn’t going to move “cultural” catholic whose faith is a coat that is put on or off depending on their comfort level I suspect that many of those older faithful Catholics, the type of folks that “Catholic” colleges which have no trace of faith on campus but send letters quoting scripture soliciting funds to, finally saw the Democrat party in general and Hillary Clinton in particular, for what they are.

And when they did I suspect many of them in rush belt states decided that a vote for Hillary was a bridge too far.

Moira Noonan & Fr Denis interviewed by WQPH
Moira Noonan & Fr Denis interviewed by WQPH
On Sunday at the former Madonna of the Holy Rosary Church in Fitchburg WQPH sponsored Holy Mass and healing service with Catholic Evangelist, Author and international speaker Moira Newman and Fr. Denis Phaneuf of the Diocese of saskatoon Saskatchewan and an advisor on the Vatican consultation on Exorcism and Deliverance Ministry.

A fair sized crowd came and heard this gospel and sermon at the mass

And stayed for the healing service, heard them speak and bought the various books available.

When all was said and done I interviewed both Moira:

and Fr. Denis

By John Ruberry

A couple of headlines caught my attention this afternoon. Here’s one: “WikiLeaks Releases More Purported Emails, Bringing Total To More Than 11,000,” comes from NPR. Wow. This federally funded news outlet I guess “forgot” that the victim of the hack, Hillary Clinton campaign chair John Podesta, admitted that his private emails were illegally breached. But he added, without evidence, that some of that correspondence may have been altered. Bloomberg writes, “WikiLeaks Releases More Alleged E-Mails From Top Clinton Aide.” Bloomberg: Are you paying attention?

So yes, Podesta’s emails were hacked. By whom? The Clinton campaign is blaming the Russian government, offering little in proof, although this morning on Fox News Sunday, Donald Trump’s running mate, Mike Pence says “the evidence continues to point in that direction.” The Clinton campaign, outside of Podesta, refuses to acknowledge the legitimacy of these emails, claiming that the Russians are trying to sway the results of this autumn’s election, while deflecting findings from those emails, which include Bill Clinton receiving a $1 million birthday check for the Clinton Foundation–the charity is really a slush fund, by the way–from the government of Qatar, which we learn from another email, is funding ISIS, or at least Hillary Clinton believes so.

Did Russia write that $1 million check?

John ruberry
John “Lee” Ruberry of the Magnificent Seven

Also learned from those purported emails was that there was an anti-Catholic email exchange between Podesta, Jennifer Palmieri, communications director of the campaign, and John Halpin of the leftist Center for American Progress. If the trio had discussing Islam in the same manner, they’d almost certainly be looking for new jobs now.

And those revelations are just the ones on the top of the Podesta email pile.

But a couple of media outlets, probably more, apparently believe that by questioning the legitimacy of these alleged emails, people may doubt their veracity.

I don’t think it’s going to work. Not this time. We’re not as dumb as the media elites believe.

John Ruberry regularly blogs at Marathon Pundit.

Why do you not understand what I am saying? Because you cannot bear to hear my word.

You belong to your father the devil and you willingly carry out your father’s desires. He was a murderer from the beginning and does not stand in truth, because there is no truth in him. When he tells a lie, he speaks in character, because he is a liar and the father of lies.

But because I speak the truth, you do not believe me.

John:8:43-45

 

There has been an avalanche of talk (but almost none by the MSM) on the Wikileaks revelations concerning the Democrats/Clinton campaign and the attempt to co-op, infiltrate and take out the Catholic Church for it to be remade in it’s own image, if you listen to EWTN radio you simply can’t miss it.

But all these revelations brought me back to the days when the Satanic Temple was planning their black mass at Harvard, In one of the many updates to my primary post I liked to Mark Shea who absolutely nailed it:

Demonstrating once again the back-handed compliment that the devil always pays to Jesus Christ, the blasphemy is directed, not toward Zeus, Quetzelcoatl or Mars, but toward the one true God.

But I’d go one step farther.  The Satanic Temple wasn’t organizing a black Seder or a black Billy Graham Rally or a Black Baptist, Lutheran or even Anglican service they attacked the Catholic mass and the Eucharist because they understood and still understand that the Catholic Church is truly the actual church of Jesus Christ, founded by him, with St. Peter at its head with an unbroken line of succession, tradition teaching and authority granted by Christ and protected by the Holy Spirit and that the Eucharist is the actual body and blood soul and divinity of Jesus Christ.

Remember there are plenty of Catholic supply stores where you can buy unconsecrated hosts indistinguishable from the real thing to the naked eye but it was the fact our satanic enemies (I’m sorry but it a Catholic can’t refer to a Satanist as an enemy then he isn’t allowed any) claimed to have a consecrated host that got the story rolling.

When I read the words of Podesta and Jennifer Palmieri (who defends herself by saying “I am a Catholic” forgetting that Judas could rightly claim he was an Apostle Chosen by Christ) I hear the same thing.

When they target the Catholic Church specifically, when they found their front organizations claiming to be catholic when they conspire to bring down the church even as the Obama administration conspires to bring down the little sisters of the poor, they are telling the entire world that the Catholic Church, for all it’s imperfections because it is administrated by humans, is the real thing.

That’s why it must be destroyed and that’s why they are doing their best to do so.

Just like the Satanic Temple.

Closing thought #1:  Elizabeth Scalia suggested something similar this week:

Catholics who are fretsome about Podesta’s words, and the words of others in the trail of emails exposing our “public servants” as seriously short-sighted and dubiously motivated, really should not be. “If the world hates you, it hated me first,” said our Christ, (John 15:18). While the Podesta emails tell us who is firmly of the world, they pay us an unintended compliment, here, by recognizing us as part of something that cannot be tamed, or distracted from the call of the One who makes us free.

Closing thought 2:  At my very first CPAC back in 2010 I interviewed some DC transit workers on the subject:  Why they are democrats, they turned it around and asked me why I am a republican (I’m not anymore FYI) my answer was as a faithful believing Catholic I was no longer welcome in the party.

It’s a high complement from Podesta and company that I could see in the 90’s what John Kerry, Nancy Pelosi and Tim Kaine still can’t, won’t or pretend not to see today.


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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.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA
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.

inline1The heart of Saint Padre Pio

Two days ago I happened across an article saying that the relics of Saint Padre Pio would be on display at the Boston’s Cathedral of the Holy Cross. Since I’m only 2 hours south of Boston, it seemed like a golden opportunity, so I packed my oldest kids in the car after school on Friday and made the drive to Boston.

I had never seen Saint relics before in person, so I had no idea what to expect. I actually didn’t even know anything about Padre Pio, so I had to Google him the night before.

abouttoenterAre we REALLY seeing a Saint’s heart?

Despite nasty traffic, we got to the Cathedral around 6 pm. I expected security or some sort of general craziness, as I heard that thousands had come before in previous days. Instead, I found a relatively orderly line forming from the back of the church. So we got in line and walked inside.

openning1I gotta say, Skyrim has nothing on this real life marvel

The cathedral is nothing short of impressive. As our line progressed forward, I calmed myself and said a short prayer for my youngest daughter. She has multiple heart defects, and I asked Padre Pio for an intervention. Since his heart was on display, it seemed like a good time to do so.

suspicious1He’s keeping an eye on you…

As we got close to the front, I put the camera away and picked up my son. As much as I wanted a close up picture, it just didn’t feel right to stand in front and snap away, plus it would have slowed the now-really-long line down. So we all came forward, I kissed the enclosure, my kids did as well, and we stepped to the side.

The “guardian” of the relic seemed really suspicious of anyone with a camera, including an outstanding gentleman like myself.

eyeonyou1Nothing gets past this guy. Not even me.

I mean, really? I’m not Indiana Jones. I don’t even know what you would do with a stolen relic. Is there a black market for these things?

With two little kids and a 2 hour+ drive back, we didn’t stay for Mass, but we did get one last picture.

outside1

Probably the coolest part of this experience was realizing that there are modern Saints and modern miracles. Sadly, the media doesn’t care to focus on these miracles and instead would have us wallow in political discussions. Luckily for us, we have a Church we can go to that can bring these modern miracles to life.


This post solely represents the view of the author and does not represent the official views of the Department of Defense, Department of the Navy, or any other branch of the US government. All of the people in it are real, including the really cute kids pictured above.


If you liked this, you might like reading my blog, and maybe even buy my Kids Book on the Navy.

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

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA
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.


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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.


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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

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
Don’t forget to hit DaTipJar, and thanks for your support!


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.

Normally i’d link to his previous pieces but he’s already taken care of that.

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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.

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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

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA
Union station WAY after dark
Day one in denver (I don’t count yesterday when we got Union Station at 10:30 & to the Hotel at just before 11 PM Denver time) started with a trip to the Basilica for AM mass as DaWife snoozed. The Hotel operates a shuttle for free in a 3 mile radius so that really came in handy. If I had that last time I wouldn’t have ended up in the clash between the occupods & the police.

I took a lot of pictures after mass.

I’m still got a few folks on my indulgence list to take care of over the next few days.

After the shuttle took me back and the wife and I had breakfast Stop two was a walk to Coors field:

assorted denver 2 030

where I filmed this clip before dabattery died

The park was beautiful the seats spacious compared to fenway and incredibly comfortable. I loved that they have a “rockpile” bench seating was $1 for kids under 12 or elders over 55 ($4 otherwise) so even the poorest and particularly young kids can always see a game in person and I really loved the deal where they had a designated drive setup where if you pledged not to buy beer after the 4th inning you got a free soda (saving dawife & I 10 bucks on a day when it was 91 during the game and the fans made a beeline for areas in the shade.) but it was very odd to see a stadium with so many empty seats.

Alas for Colorado while they jumped into an early lead against the rangers their bull pen cracked at a critical moment turning a 5-1 lead after 5 into a 7-5 loss despite putting two on in the ninth. They had an interesting program where

We then stopped at the 1 up bar for a quick bite, the food was meh, but the arcade and pinball selection was excellent and if you are a fan of pintastic this location near coors field is a must visit.

The wife and I walked the 16th street mall a bit stopping at Tattered Covers book store for a souvenir for our oldest and to avoid a thunder storm before heading back to the hotel. On the way we were stopped by an earnest young girl asking us to sign a postcard for the gov on Utah asking him to oppose exploiting resources on federal land. The young lady must have approached me due to the fedora, grey sideburns & doctor who scarf and must have been startled to hear me tell her: “Sorry I support that kind of thing.”

The hotel has a fridge in the room so we hit a local supermarket via the hotel shuttle service before heading back to crash.

Now with all batteries charged the plan is to do a few things with the wife in the AM then start interviews with people coming for the school choice event as they arrive in the afternoon both for the site and the podcast.

I suspect with a lot of bloggers here the upload speeds (already kinda meh) are not going to improve so don’t be surprised if a lot of this stuff goes up back in MA but I’ll do what I can.


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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!”

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.

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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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.

 

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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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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At DePaul University we once again saw the commitment of the left to the principle of free speech

DePaul University Black Lives Matter protesters shut down a Milo Yiannopoulos event on Tuesday night. They justified their illiberal actions on grounds that Yiannopoulos’s speech spreads hate and violence—which, incidentally, is true, given that the students retaliated by literally attacking him.

In video footage of the event, a female protester can clearly be seen striking Yiannopoulos in the face. This took place during the Q and A, which was interrupted by the female student and another activist, student Edward Ward. They were joined by ten other irate students. Yiannopoulos’s supporters tried to stop them, and police and security were called.

There was security on hand, but…


neither the police nor campus security did anything to stop the activists. This was ironic, because DePaul had forced the College Republicans to pay several hundred extra dollars for security for the event, according to The College Fix.

The college president responded by sending out an email referring to Yiannopoulos and his ilk as “entertainers” and “self-serving provocateurs”, calling his actions his “shtick” and praised protesters who were: “working to calm each other, and at times, even hold people back from hasty decisions,”

That being said he also had this to say:

“Yesterday’s speaker was invited to speak at DePaul, and those who interrupted the speech were wrong to do so. Universities welcome speakers, give their ideas a respectful hearing, and then respond with additional speech countering the ideas. I was ashamed for DePaul University when I saw a student rip the microphone from the hands of the conference moderator and wave it in the face of our speaker,” he wrote.

Given his attack on Milo’s opinions, praise of protesters and the inactivity of the security that the university required him to pay for the president words ring hollow.

Glenn Reynolds as one suggested effect to this cause:


Sounds like DePaul has created a hostile educational environment on account of race. I hope that some DePaul students file a complaint with the Department of Education, then publicize the response. You know that if the races had been reversed here there would already be feds onsite.

But Charlie Kirk on Twitter notes an effect that is more likely to produce change

The withholding of contributions both big and small is the best way to persuade the university to actively support the principles they claim to hve.

That a Catholic University that has allowed this is an embarrassment to me but I suspect DePaul’s “Catholic” identity these days only exists to attact the dollars of faithful catholics who unlike the Cardinal Newman Society have no idea what DePaul’s has been up to these days.

******

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This post is going to sound a tad unusual.

As you might have noted from a previous post this year, the Holy Father has for the year of Mercy (which runs from Dec. 8, 2015, the Solemnity of the Immaculate Conception to Nov. 20, 2016) declared several available indulgences (under normal conditions) including one for going through any of the designated Holy Doors at multiple locations around the world.

It so happens that one of said doors is in my city so this year I have been taking advantage of this situation to the point where I have literally gone though every dead relative and friend or parents of friends that I can remember to obtain, by the grace of God, indulgences for them. Given I come from Sicilian parents born in the 1920’s that’s no easy feat but as I regularly go to daily mass and weekly confession obtaining daily indulgences has been less complicated than for most.

With over 150 days to go in the Holy Year I thought about going through the rotor for them all again (after all any attachment to sin turns a Plenary indulgence into a partial one so it’s can’t hurt to do it again) but I thought I’d do something different.

I am literally opening up the floor to readers. Do you have a dead relative or friend that you would like me to pray for and by the grace of God obtain an indulgence for? Simply leave their name in comments and I will make it a point to do so during this year of mercy.

I’m limiting the number to the first 100 names simply because I can’t guarantee that I will be in a position to go through the holy doors every day as I’ll be traveling a few times during this period and don’t know if there will be another Holy Door available nearby. Furthermore as one must be in a state of grace to earn an indulgence I can’t guarantee that I won’t succumb to temptation and thus lose days before obtaining sacramental confession and I don’t want to be in a position that I can’t do something I’ve promised.

Don’t worry BTW if you are not Catholic or your departed loved one was not, the existence of Purgatory is not dependent on either your or their beliefs in its existence. Furthermore if a person I’m praying for is either already in heaven (thus not needing the indulgence) or already in Hell (thus unable to benefit from it) said indulgence will go to the deposit of faith which will be used to good effect.

Finally if you want notification of when said indulgence was earned leave that information in your comment.

So start sending me the names and I’ll get praying and get though those doors for them.

And remember check with your local diocese, it’s very probable that such a door exists in your area as well, take advantage of it while you can as the next scheduled holy year doesn’t come until 2025.

FYI if you want to know the conditions to earn an indulgence the details are below the fold

Continue reading “Open Indulgence Request Call”

The latest in our series on Amoris Laetitia as it is vs how it is spun:

 

The Pope talks about the family being a place where we are happy for each other

110. When a loving person can do good for others, or sees that others are happy, they themselves live happily and in this way give glory to God, for “God loves a cheerful giver” (2 Cor 9:7). Our Lord especially appreciates those who find joy in the happiness of others. If we fail to learn how to rejoice in the well-being of others, and focus primarily on our own needs, we condemn ourselves to a joyless existence, for, as Jesus said, “it is more blessed to give than to receive” (Acts 20:35).  The family must always be a place where, when something good happens to one of its members, they know that others will be there to celebrate it with them.

Seeking other’s happiness is the opposite of the grievance society..

And in the very next paragraph the grievance society is addressed

112. First, Paul says that love “bears all things” (panta stégei). This is about more than simply putting up with evil; it has to do with the use of the tongue. The verb can mean “holding one’s peace” about what may be wrong with another person.  It implies limiting judgment, checking the impulse to issue a firm and ruthless condemnation:  “Judge not and you will not be judged” (Lk 6:37).  Although it runs contrary to the way we normally use our tongues, God’s word tells us: “Do not speak evil against one another, brothers and sisters” (Jas 4:11). Being willing to speak ill of another person is a way of asserting ourselves, venting resentment and envy without concern for the harm we may do. We often forget that slander can be quite sinful; it is a grave offense against God when it seriously harms another person’s good name and causes damage that is hard to repair. Hence God’s word forthrightly states that the tongue “is a world of iniquity” that “stains the whole body” (Jas 3:6); it is a “restless evil, full of deadly poison” (3:8). Whereas the tongue can be used to “curse those who are made in the likeness of God” (3:9), love cherishes the good name of others, even one’s enemies. In seeking to uphold God’s law we must never forget this specific requirement of love.

One could argue that this paragraph is a direct assault on the entire raison d’être of the left.

 

And the next paragraph again flies in the face of the current cultural wisdom on marriage.

113. Married couples joined by love speak well of each other; they try to show their spouse’s good side, not their weakness and faults. In any event, they keep silent rather than speak ill of them. This is not merely a way of acting in front of others; it springs from an interior attitude.  Far from ingenuously claiming not to see the problems and weaknesses of others, it sees those weaknesses and faults in a wider context.  It recognizes that these failings are a part of a bigger picture. We have to realize that all of us are a complex mixture of light and shadows. The other person is much more than the sum of the little things that annoy me. Love does not have to be perfect for us to value it. The other person loves me as best they can, with all their limits, but the fact that love is imperfect does not mean that it is untrue or unreal. It is real, albeit limited and earthly. If I expect too much, the other person will let me know, for he or she can neither play God nor serve all my needs. Love coexists with imperfection. It “bears all things” and can hold its peace before the limitations of the loved one.

The most effective weapon the cultural left has played in their war on marriage has been the unrealistic expectations game.

 

And part of that expectations game is discouragement

116. Panta elpízei. Love does not despair of the future. Following upon what has just been said, this phrase speaks of the hope of one who knows that others can change, mature and radiate unexpected beauty and untold potential. This does not mean that everything will change in this life.  It does involve realizing that, though things may not always turn out as we wish, God may well make crooked lines straight and draw some good from the evil we endure in this world.

As CS Lewis pointed out in screwtape the trick of the enemy is to make you panic over a bunch of different futures that can’t all happen.  That’s another tool in the war on marriage they has been particularly effective and or the press to acknowledge these realities would undo decades of hard fighting in that war.

My first thought when I heard about the unanimous decision not to make a decision by SCOTUS was the fact that with an election coming that the idea of a government fatwa against a bunch of nuns might not play well in certain swing states drove this move. (There is a reason why the MSM doesn’t mention them in the context of this case)

but the more I thought about it something else hit  me.

I could be completely wrong here but I have a feeling that SCOTUS sending the Little sisters of the Poor case back down looking for compromise is all about a great conflict in the minds of some of those justices.

I think that while the religion of liberalism runs strong and produces an overwhelming pull I think that to force these nuns to violate their consciences might just be a bridge too far for some of those justices.

The irony here is that while Justice Scalia was alive this wasn’t an issue, if there was a conservative majority in favor of the nuns then a liberal Catholic could happily vote on the losing side knowing that said vote would not have any effect on the poor nuns.

But now instead of the cover of a meaningless vote, Justice Scalia has put them on a very uncomfortable spot and I strongly suspect that the many prayers being said both for the nuns and directed toward the guardian angels of the Justices in question were not in vain.

Conscience is an odd thing sometimes and we never quite know the workings of God.

I know some of you might think that a load of BS but that’s my gut.

 

 

 

They will be celebrated by the church for the rest of their life…after that their on their own.

DaTechGuy repeated Meme

I had lunch with my pastor a few days ago, the food was good and the conversation was great and in the midst of it he said something that really stuck to me in terms of how a priest deals with people.

Our conversation turned to deathbed conversions and people who came back to the Church near the end of their days and I mentioned how Milo Yiannopoulos, who is dedicated to truth,  still can’t bring himself to leave the church despite his very public Mortal sins.

Father talked about how God reaches out to such people,  about how to minister to such people, encouraging them to attend mass and what can’t be presumed about individuals and said this:

If because of me  they don’t call for a priest on their deathbed, that’s on me.

That’s a perfect summary of what the job of a priest is.

It’s all about saving souls.

It doesn’t matter how popular you are, how rich your parish is. if your primary goal is not saving the souls of individuals you’re doing it wrong.

Judging by the regular lines at confession at the parish, I’d say he’s doing it right.

 

 

Before I started my Perpetual twitter Novena praying for people who attacked the Catholic church online on a daily basis I often found myself in arguments with such people.

During those jousts one of my favorite tools was to quote Matthew Kelly’s speech at the Catholic Men’s conference:

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.

Matthew Kelly Worcester Mass. March 20th 2010

Those facts about the Catholic Church both in history and today are something our secular friends do their best to ignore and hide from the people but every now and then those who hate the church without meaning to do our work for us

For example, in trying to raise public hackles over the fact that Catholic institutions don’t perform abortions, the ACLU reminded everyone, in a report issued late last week, of something truly impressive: One out of every six patients in the United States is cared for in a Catholic hospital.

To that, I’d like to add some other meaningful facts: There were nearly 20 million emergency-room visits, more than 100 million outpatient visits and more than 5 million admissions last year to these institutions.

They employ almost 800,000 workers. They save more lives, release patients sooner and have better overall patient-satisfaction ratings than non-religious facilities. They demonstrate significantly better results than for-profit and government hospitals on patient safety, length of stay and patient satisfaction.

Oh, and their dedication to the common good leads them to offer services that are distinctly unprofitable.

Cue Michael Kelly again:

When Jesus was alive, where were the sick people? There in hospitals right? Yeah we’re reading the scriptures: Jesus came to the village and said: “Take me to the hospital I want to cure some sick people.” Nope NO there ain’t such thing as a Hospital any thing that’s good about modern healthcare emerged through the church emerged essentially through the religious orders

If the culture of today’s secular liberalism had been there when the church introduced hospitals and education for the masses we would be still living in a feudal age consisting of the very rich and the very poor.

Or basically what the left is trying to remake California as.

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The latest in my series of showing Amoris Laetitia as it is vs what some pretend it to be.

Just a reminder Patience is a virtue and also makes things work

92. Being patient does not mean letting ourselves be constantly mistreated, tolerating physical aggression or allowing other people to use us. We encounter problems whenever we think that relationships or people ought to be perfect, or when we put ourselves at the centre and expect things to turn out our way. Then everything makes us impatient, everything makes us react aggressively. Unless we cultivate patience, we will always find excuses for responding angrily. We will end up incapable of living together, antisocial, unable to control our impulses, and our families will become battlegrounds. That is why the word of God tells us: “Let all bitterness and wrath and anger and clamour and slander be put away from you, with all malice” (Eph 4:31). Patience takes root when I recognize that other people also have a right to live in this world, just as they are. It does not matter if they hold me back, if they unsettle my plans, or annoy me by the way they act or think, or if they are not everything I want them to be. Love always has an aspect of deep compassion that leads to accepting the other person as part of this world, even when he or she acts differently than I would like.

But our society and the left doesn’t like patience because it gets rid of the excuse to do what one wants at once and as I’ve always said the worst thing in the world is an excuse.

The Pope also talks a bit about a particular deadly sin, envy.

95. Saint Paul goes on to reject as contrary to love an attitude expressed by the verb zelói – to be Spiritual Exercises, Contemplation to Attain Love jealous or envious. This means that love has no room for discomfiture at another person’s good fortune (cf. Acts 7:9; 17:5). Envy is a form of sadness provoked by another’s prosperity; it shows that we are not concerned for the happiness of others but only with our own well-being. Whereas love makes us rise above ourselves, envy closes us in on ourselves. True love values the other person’s achievements. It does not see him or her as a threat. It frees us from the sour taste of envy. It recognizes that everyone has different gifts and a unique path in life. So it strives to discover its own road to happiness, while allowing others to find theirs.

Love and envy are simply not compatible however in our consumer society envy is a driver.

And he brings us something not blaming other and looking at ourselves.

107. Today we recognize that being able to forgive others implies the liberating experience of understanding and forgiving ourselves. Often our mistakes, or criticism we have received from loved ones, can lead to a loss of self-esteem. We become distant from others, avoiding affection and fearful in our interpersonal relationships. Blaming others becomes falsely reassuring. We need to learn to pray over our past history, to accept ourselves, to learn how to live with our limitations, and even to forgive ourselves, in order to have this same attitude towards others.

One must forgive oneself before one can forgive others but one must also look at oneself honestly, and boy the left hates that.

Plus the base of our ability to forgive others is the willingness of God to forgive us:

108. All this assumes that we ourselves have had the experience of being forgiven by God, justified by his grace and not by our own merits. We have known a love that is prior to any of our own efforts, a love that constantly opens doors, promotes and encourages. If we accept that God’s love is unconditional, that the Father’s love cannot be bought or sold, then we will become capable of showing boundless love and forgiving others even if they have wronged us. Otherwise, our family life will no longer be a place of understanding, support and encouragement, but rather one of constant tension and mutual criticism.

This is a big reason why marriage fails, When you considered that God has forgiven you it’s easier to forgive each other, but one a society rejects Christianity and forgiveness then it becomes harder to forgive and easier to just walk away from marriage and family.

As I look at the California Protesters attacking police and burning police cars I find my self thinking of all people Blessed Sister Restituta.

What you’ve never heard of Blessed Sister Restituta? Let me educate you.

She was born Helena Kafka in 1894. Helena was a nurse who inspired by Franciscan Nuns to join their order. She continued as a Nurse eventually becoming lead surgical nurse at Modling Hospital in Vienna at the close of the first World War.

Now one might wonder what an Austrian Franciscan Nun in Nursing has to do with Donald Trump, well that can be answered when you consider their enemies.

The supporters of Donald Trump find themselves having to brave the violence of those who wish to silence him and make any expression of support for Mr. Trump be hidden.

Sister Restituta meanwhile found herself as a faithful Catholic in a regime that had been annexed by Nazi Germany and as the anti-God Nazi regime invaded every aspect of life she had to deal with those who wanted faith silenced.

Sister Restituta was very outspoken in her opposition to the Nazi regime. When a new wing to the hospital was built she hung a crucifix in each of the new rooms. The Nazis demanded that they be removed. Sister Restituta was told she would be dismissed if she did not comply.

She refused. The crucifixes remained on the walls.

Does this sound familiar? If you’ve been following the culture wars it should be. Fortunately for us we have the protections of the 1st Amendment and a history of free expression which helps keep those who wish to suppress the free expression of opinion or religion in check, Sister Restituta was not so lucky.

One of the doctors on staff, a fanatical Nazi, would have none of it. He denounced her to the Party and on Ash Wednesday, 1942, she was arrested by the Gestapo as she came out of the operating room. The charges against her included, “hanging crucifixes, and writing a poem that mocked Hitler.”

The Nazis promptly sentenced her to death by the guillotine for “favouring the enemy and conspiracy to commit high treason.”


It is very likely that none of us will suffer the faith of Sr. Restituta who was beheaded on March 30, 1943 but let me point out something.
There was a time in Austria when if you told people that you would see Nuns beheaded if you let these guys get power they would have said you were crazy.

There was also a time, not long ago, when if you told someone who supported the likely nominee of a major US political party that attending one of his rallies would put your personal safety in danger when people would have said the same.

Now some of our friends on the left, who might not like this kind of thing may find it convenient to keep quiet about this, not wanting to risk chasing away potential voters.

And some of my fellows who don’t support Trump as the GOP nominee might also find it convenient to blame Trump for the violence of these protestors as an easy way to highlight all they find disagreeable with him.

There are two problems with this approach, first ethically it is dishonest and wrong.

But as a practical matter sooner or later these movements eat themselves, ask Troskey, ask Robespierre or ask Cathy Brennan.

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