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.

Ok this is going to cause a lot talk:

There is no doubt that we are faced with a profound evolution of dogma. The Fathers and theologians of the Middle Ages could believe that the whole human race had, in substance, become Catholic and that paganism existed only on the margins, but the discovery of the New World…has radically changed prospects. The second half of the last century has fully affirmed the understanding that God does not let all of the unbaptized go to hell…The great missionaries of the 16th Century believed that the unbaptized were forever lost, and this explains their fervor. After Vatican II that conviction was finally abandoned, which precipitated a kind of deep double-crisis: on the one hand, it affected the missionary’s motivations — why you should try to convince the people to accept the Christian faith when they can be saved, even without it? But another issue also emerged: faith becomes problematic when it is compulsory, in how it is lived in a life. …the Christian himself it is linked to the demands of the Christian faith and its morals. But if faith and salvation are not interdependent, even faith becomes unmotivated.

Benedict’s words are all over the net today and I suspect Catholic blogs and twitter will be going on and on about it for weeks.

After Brazil offered the worst showing against a German side since the French in 1941 an interesting possibility has come up.

If Argentina manages to beat the Dutch (no easy feat) tomorrow could be treated to a World Cup final were both nations are the home of a living Pope.

Of course Pope Francis’ soccer fandom is well-known as his pledge to not pray for team Argentina to win.

Francis recalled during an interview published Friday with the Barcelona newspaper “La Vanguardia,” that Brazilian President Dilma Rousseff had asked him during a February visit to the Vatican to at least be neutral during the competition.

While less known Pope Benedict is also a big soccer fan but more importantly to him is credited by Franz Beckenbauer with drawing him back to the faith.

While I doubt that the two popes will be in front of a TV threatening bulls of excommunication on the refs over yellow card calls I think this would be an interesting opportunity for not only political cartoonists but for evangelization.

I think it would be a great idea for the pair to say a mass together for both teams and or pose for a picture wearing the other team’s colors and illustrate the importance of sportsmanship as a Christian virtue.

Of course the Dutch might have something to say about those plans

A series of short thoughts to start this day.

Because I’ve been attending Morning Mass I’ve been missing Morning Joe lately turned it on this morning and immediately the story of Pope Francis meeting with abuse “survivors”. The table commented on him being the first Pope do to so and critiqued Pope Benedict for his “inaction”.

The second statement on Benedict a canard as anyone who has followed the scandals would know if they used any other source than the MSM. However as the show quotes the NYT often there is no excuse for not knowing the former:

Pope Benedict XVI came face to face Thursday with a scandal that has left lasting wounds on the American church, holding an unannounced meeting with several victims of sexual abuse by priests in the Boston area.

Listening to the Francis Good Benedict Bad refrain is like reading Animal Farm’s “four legs good, two legs bad”. Both are good VERY good.

FYI the word “survivors” is odd word here, it implies a person would normally die from an activity. Words mean things, victim would be a much better English.

Speaking of language according to the stats according to 3 out of the 4 victims of Catholic clerical abuse were boys, yet nobody talks about it as a “gay” scandal. Doesn’t fit the narrative.

FYI a lot of people keep insisting that if ONLY priest didn’t have the celibacy requirement this scandal might not have happened. One must assume those making that argument will be shocked ShOCKED by this scandal:

Mr McKelvie, a former child protection worker, prompted police to launch Operation Fernbridge to investigate allegations of sex abuse Elm Guest House in Barnes, south London, after providing information to MP Tom Watson. In 2012 Mr Watson spoke in the Commons of a “powerful paedophile network linked to Parliament and Number 10”.

If ONLY members of Parliament were allowed to marry and were not required to be celibate, I’m sure this would have never happened.

Oh, there are two interesting coincidences concerning this scandal in England, one will seem very familiar:

The UK Home Office has admitted that it can’t find 114 “potentially relevant files” relating to the pedophile scandal engulfing Westminster, in which there are allegations that senior political figures were involved in, or covered up, child sex abuse.

I’ve heard this somewhere before

Loughton also said that to lose so many files “smacks of incompetence or, I fear, some degree of cover-up.”

Some degree of cover up? Who other than Democrats on Elijah Cummings committee and the Democrats in the White House would buy the “incompetence” line?

By an odd coincidence Instapundit notes the release of this study out of England:

The statement that paedophilia is “natural and normal” was made not three decades ago but last July. It was made not in private but as one of the central claims of an academic presentation delivered, at the invitation of the organisers, to many of the key experts in the field at a conference held by the University of Cambridge.
Other presentations included “Liberating the paedophile: a discursive analysis,” and “Danger and difference: the stakes of hebephilia.”

I’ve been writing about this trend for a while as has Stacy McCain and has been for a decade. This is going to get a lot worse before it gets better because it’s always easier to redefine sin than to change behavior.

The city with the strongest gun laws has once again showed the effective of gun laws:

Extra police officers on Chicago’s streets were not enough to quell a long weekend of violence that ended with 14 people shot to death and dozens more injured.

During a Monday news conference, just hours after two more people were shot to death earlier in the day, Police Superintendent Garry McCarthy said his department’s best efforts could not prevent the bloodshed that spiked dramatically on Sunday. Chicago’s total of 53 shooting incidents for the holiday weekend easily eclipsed Detroit and New York combined, which had a total of 46 shooting incidents, 10 of which were fatal.

As long as the gangs are politically valuable to the pols in the city they will not be cracked down on and until that is done this will not change.

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Fighting back tends to work as the Ukrainian government is discovering. in the Ukraine. A few months ago taking back cities:

It was one strike in a scrappy war of raid and counter-raid at which the highly motivated pro-Russian fighters excelled – and which appeared to be locked in a bloody stalemate.

That resistance crumbled suddenly and in the early hours of Saturday morning, following several days of artillery bombardment to which the rebels had no answer.

Gathering their remaining tanks and fighting vehicles, Igor Strelkov, the rebel commander, and his men made a desperate dash for Donetsk, the regional capital 60 miles to the south where the self-declared People’s Republic had established its government.

Just a few months ago the conventional wisdom was Eastern Ukraine would fall. With the west unwilling to help the Ukrainians have decided that they would have to settle things themselves and now it’s Russia who has to decide if it’s worth fighting a way for eastern Ukraine.

Somewhere Ron Paul is smiling.

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Some Doctor Who? The newest season of Doctor who premieres in a month featuring the first full episode of Peter Capaldi as the 13th Doctor picking up from where this scene left off

Unfortunately for the BBC some of the scripts for the new season have leaked to the internet

Five scripts from the upcoming season of Doctor Who have made their way to the Internet following a security breach at BBC and now the network is asking fans of the show to look away from spoilers.

The BBC is asking people not to share those scripts and it seems the fans have agreed. My oldest son, who is if you can believe it a bigger doctor who fan than I am, recieved those scripts them in an e-mail. He deleted them.

Personally if I was a virus writer this would be a golden opportunity as I suspect that most US fans will not be as circumspect in refusing to open or download such an attachment.

Let’s close with some fun I noticed the stories about the Hawkins Index to see how far people have actually read in books.

It brought to mind a story from my high school days. I was in an honors English class and was assigned a long paper on the Brothers Karamazov. I put off reading the book and put it off until the night before the paper was due I realized I hadn’t even started the book let alone the paper.

So I read the first 20 pages and between midnight and 6 AM managed to crank out a paper based on that. I even took the typewriter to school (yes this was in the pre-pc age) and kept typing right up until my first period english class where only my teachers polio induced confinement to a wheelchair prevented her from seeing me bring the typewriter into the room.

I got an “A” I still don’t know how I did it.

At the end of the first run EWTN coverage of the Papal canonization mass Raymond Arroyo made a point to thank Mother Angelica the 91-year-old for founding the network and allowing the coverage of the historic ceremony and Mass.

Most of the time that is exactly right. As a general rule if you wanted to see a canonization mass in full EWTN is the only place to go.

Not today.

When I turned on the TV at the tail end of the mass Fox News & MSNBC were carrying the mass, and while CNN was not at this point I’m informed by Sissy Willis that they too carried the mass live, albeit not without a hiccup or two.

Not having seen the CNN coverage I can’t comment on any spin Delia Gallagher might have been employing but in one sense that is correct. This event had a culture wars component and was in fact a significant victory for the Church.

A vital component in demonizing an organization or group of people is ignorance. There are plenty of preachers who’ve spent a lifetime painting the picture of an idol worshiping bunch of heretics. Likewise there are a bunch of people in the media and on the left who have spent decades painting the church as a bunch of woman hating bigoted pederasts.

For them this has been an unmitigated disaster in a year of disaster.

First you have the election of the first Latin American pope. It forced them to narrow their attacks to avoid any appearance of hitting Francis for fear of a backlash. Francis’ humble ways haven’t made it easy.

Then you have a Pope who using social media effectively. Millions of people follow his tweets in seven languages without a filter.

Next you have the canonization of Pope John Paul II, A man not only in the living memory of anyone 20 years old or over but who tens or even hundreds of millions of people alive have seen or met in person. In a celebrity obsessed culture A week’s worth of critical media stories on him can’t counter a someone able to say about an actual saint: “I saw him” “I met him” effect.

Pope John Paul II canonization might still have been an opening for division until Francis decided to schedule it together with John XXIII. Suddenly it became harder to split the various camps within the church for the ceremony of the Pope who started Vatican II.

Finally you have the first canonization ceremony of Pope Francis AND the presence of a Pope emeritus making it a four pope event something unheard of in history making it a story that the cable networks practically had to cover live.

Of all the things that have gone wrong for the Catholic haters since Francis’ election this is the worst. If you want to portray the Catholic Church as a bunch of stuck up bigots who hate woman or heralds of the anti-christ the last thing you want is people seeing a live mass filled with millions of the joyful faithful in worshiping in a setting and ceremony filled with the Holy Spirit.

Try explaining that away.

After today things will settle back to normal, the media will do their best to spin the church and the faithful will have to go to EWTN to avoid that spin.

But for today that filter was largely gone, that’s going to leave a cultural mark that will take a lot of effort to erase.

Which I suspect is just how the Holy Spirit planned it.

Update:  Ed Morrissey links:

I wonder if Fern and Rosemary made the trip this time. Around three million of us crowded into and around the Vatican in 2011, and while we haven’t yet heard the final estimates of the crowd size, I’m betting this was larger. I would have loved to have returned for this event, but it wasn’t in the cards. My friends Kathryn Jean Lopez and Charmaine Yoest have kept me and other Twitter followers up to date on their experiences, so this time I’m experiencing it vicariously.

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Olimometer 2.52

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A lot of fuss is being made about a new worldwide survey being sent out to Catholics to find out the challenges for the faith and the family. in preparation for an extraordinary Synod on the subject.

This survey has not gotten a lot of traction in the US

it’s Pope Francis’s latest initiative that has the greatest potential to shake up one of the world’s oldest institutions. Within the past few weeks the Vatican has begun dispatching a questionnaire to parishes around the world to ask Catholics about their views on family life and sexuality in preparation for a landmark synod (a church-wide conference) on those issues next year. It’s the first time that any Pope has done such a thing.

It’s certainly not a move that’s calculated to soothe traditionalists. (The U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops, for one, doesn’t seem especially keen on distributing the survey to parishioners, and hasn’t moved to post the document to its website — in notable contrast to their British counterparts.)

However those people quoting the NY Times, Hans Küng and referring to Pope Benedict as Francis’ “hapless predecessor” apparently didn’t take much of a look at the survey consisting of a bunch of essay questions specifically designed for those who teach the faith to others.  It’s not for the faint of heart. Here is question #1

1. The Diffusion of the Teachings on the Family in Sacred Scripture and the Church’s Magisterium

a) Describe how the Catholic Church’s teachings on the value of the family contained in the Bible, Gaudium et spes, Familiaris consortio and other documents of the post-conciliar Magisterium is understood by people today? What formation is given to our people on the Church’s teaching on family life?

b) In those cases where the Church’s teaching is known, is it accepted fully or are there difficulties in putting it into practice? If so, what are they?

c) How widespread is the Church’s teaching in pastoral programmes at the national, diocesan and parish levels? What catechesis is done on the family?

d ) To what extent — and what aspects in particular — is this teaching actually known, accepted, rejected and/or criticized in areas outside the Church? What are the cultural factors which hinder the full reception of the Church’s teaching on the family?

I think the US Bishops took one look at his survey and correctly realized that the doers in the church are too busy actually ministering the faith for essay questions while the non doers are even less likely to take the time to fill it out.

We can be sure that the dissenters who wish to see sin redefined will certainly dive in ready to blame church doctrine for all life’s ills.  We can already see it is generating a lot of talk and excitement among left types such as in the Guardian where they have abandoned Barack Obama for a new idol:

That Obama poster on the wall, promising hope and change, is looking a little faded now. The disappointments, whether over drone warfare or a botched rollout of healthcare reform, have left the world’s liberals and progressives searching for a new pin-up to take the US president’s place. As it happens, there’s an obvious candidate: the head of an organisation those same liberals and progressives have long regarded as sexist, homophobic and, thanks to a series of child abuse scandals, chillingly cruel. The obvious new hero of the left is the pope.

Readers at the BBC are simply beside themselves:

As an out gay Catholic I have been surprised but really very satisfied with the new Pope’s slow but discernible movement away from the orthodoxy on homosexuality. This survey is warmly welcomed and I hope that by listening the Church will learn to accept diversity in sexuality. Darryl Telles, Brighton

The dirty little secret, the media may portray this as a new and exciting change in the church, but it’s a message the faithful have heard before on God’s unconditional love here

God’s passionate love for his people—for humanity—is at the same time a forgiving love. It is so great that it turns God against himself, his love against his justice.

particularly for sinners

When Jesus speaks in his parables of the shepherd who goes after the lost sheep, of the woman who looks for the lost coin, of the father who goes to meet and embrace his prodigal son, these are no mere words: they constitute an explanation of his very being and activity. His death on the Cross is the culmination of that turning of God against himself in which he gives himself in order to raise man up and save him. This is love in its most radical form.

avoiding ideologies:

Christian charitable activity must be independent of parties and ideologies. It is not a means of changing the world ideologically, and it is not at the service of worldly stratagems, but it is a way of making present here and now the love which man always needs.

or even on the limits of proselytism & charity here:

Charity, furthermore, cannot be used as a means of engaging in what is nowadays considered proselytism. Love is free; it is not practiced as a way of achieving other ends

Every single one of those statements come not from Francis but  from Pope Benedict XVI in his Encyclical DEUS CARITAS EST but unless you read the National Catholic Register you likely never saw it.  After all Benedict as a boogeyman was too valuable an image with which to attack the church for such words to get any press.

Interestingly enough our friends on the left who ignored Benedict but are ready to pull down their Obama posters and replace them with ones of Francis (a bit of idolatry that he would not approve) over similar words might be a tad less anxious to redecorate if they went online and read some of the things online that Pope Francis said that didn’t make the news like his Angelus message of November 10th.

Before us stands the final defeat of sin and death, the beginning of a new time of joy and of endless light. But already on this earth, in prayer, in the Sacraments, in fraternity, we encounter Jesus and his love, and thus we may already taste something of the risen life.

or this sermon from November 13th on the Creed

 This saving intervention does not take away our human nature and its weakness — we are all weak and we are all sinners — and it does not take from us our responsibility to ask for forgiveness every time we err! I cannot be baptized many times, but I can go to Confession and by doing so renew the grace of Baptism. It is as though I were being baptized for a second time. The Lord Jesus is very very good and never tires of forgiving us. Even when the door that Baptism opens to us in order to enter the Church is a little closed, due to our weaknesses and our sins. Confession reopens it, precisely because it is a second Baptism that forgives us of everything and illuminates us to go forward with the light of the Lord.  (emphasis mine)

And you don’t have to go back into the archives at the Vatican Website to find this stuff.  Here is a tweet is from Yesterday:

Confessing our sins may be difficult for us, but it brings us peace. We are sinners, and we need God’s forgiveness.

— Pope Francis (@Pontifex) November 18, 2013

Take a close look at what he says, it’s inviting, it’s warm, it’s welcoming, it offers peace in a hard moment but it requires a proactive acknowledgement of one’s own sinfulness.

What he says isn’t even odd for a pope after all the infinite measure of forgiveness Christ offers i  intrinsic to the very concept of Christianity, but note what does he says about sin or rather doesn’t say…

Francis doesn’t claim sin isn’t sin.

Francis doesn’t redefine it.

Francis says when it comes to sin it is our responsibility to ask for forgiveness, not once not twice but,  every time we sin.

But the media isn’t interested, you would never know Francis ever said these things.  No wonder Sarah Palin wasn’t sure about what the Pope actually believed.

For similar words Pope Benedict, the holy Grandfather would be excoriated.  Francis is a very different story.

The left doesn’t DARE critique the first Latin American Pope both because of their own political correctness and their fear of alienating the millions of color who love him and are proud of him.

Thus an awful lot of pixels are spent by an awful lot of leftists trying to convince their followers and perhaps themselves that this survey is another sign that Pope Francis is on the verge of going to full Andrew Sullivan, instead of accepting the sinner and calling for repentance (which the Church as always done), accepting and re-defining Sin (which the Church has not and will not). They will use his style and humble nature to push this narrative for all it’s worth for as long as they can get away with it.

And when this doesn’t happen, when this bill of goods is not delivered after years of anticipation those same leftists will use Francis not as a boogeyman, like Benedict but as a victim. They will claim that Francis waned to make all the changes that the left promised but it was the entrenched Church that they have always despised that he simply couldn’t defeat…

…but it won’t matter.  While there have been some on the right who have been fooled by the left’s portrait Francis has drawn millions through the doors of the church with this effect:

POPE FRANCIS has inspired a surge in attendances and confessions in the Roman Catholic Church, reversing decades of decline.

some will eventually fall away as is the nature of man but many will grow and slowly find themselves on the way toward salvation.

Never doubt for on second the Holy Spirit knows what he’s doing.

HUGE UPDATE from the Curt Jester

I just love the story about Pope Francis calling up a Traditional Catholic writer who had criticized him.

“Pope Francis told me that he was very close to me, having learned of my health condition, of my grave illness, and I clearly noticed his deep empathy, the attention for a person as such, beyond ideas and opinions, while I live through a time of trial and suffering.”

“I was astonished, amazed, above all moved: for me, as a Catholic, that which I was experiencing was one of the most beautiful experiences in my life. But I felt the duty to remind the Pope that I, together wih Gnocchi, had expressed specific criticisms regarding his work, while I renewed my total fidelity [to him] as a son of the Church. The Pope almost did not let me finish the sentence, saying that he had understood that those criticisms had been made with love, and how important it had been for him to receive them.” [These words] “comforted me greatly.”

I can see heads exploding all over the left, it’s one thing to reach out and speak to atheists, dissenters and the poor, it’s quite another to reach out to conservative critics.

Update 2: Heard from the Anchoress via e-mail who doesn’t excuse Palin:

If people are ignorant about the reality of the pope, it’s really not the press’ fault. Every word he speaks is out there on Catholic sites, either from the Vatican or else, you know…at places like Patheos. If people want to understand the pope, the way to do that — for any pope — was never through the msm. Palin of all ppl should know that.

She should know she wrote the book on the subject

She followed up with a second e-mail but that’s another post.

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Olimometer 2.52

It’s Tuesday and as I’ve said you never know from one week to another how the weekly paycheck is going to go. Week one and two were dismal failures yet this week’s paycheck is already full and with a little luck we might even make up some of the last two weeks’ shortfalls or even pay some old bills in the house that are waiting.

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Sgt Schultz:I see nothing, I was not here, I did not even get up this morning!

Hogan’s Heroes Hold that Tiger, 1965

Is there any point to which you would wish to draw my attention?”

“To the curious incident of the dog in the night-time.”

“The dog did nothing in the night-time.”

“That was the curious incident,”

Sir Arthur Conan Doyle Sherlock Holmes Sliverblaze

A rather extraordinary event took place this Friday.

The first Encyclical from the Papacy of Francis I was released titled LUMEN FIDEI (the light of faith).

Under ordinary circumstances the first Encyclical of a new pope is significant, this one even more so as it an Encyclical that, while signed by one Pope is authored by two:

As Francis himself told a group of cardinals and bishops in May, the encyclical was written “with four hands” together with retired Pope Benedict XVI.

Benedict had almost finished the text when he resigned on Feb. 28. Francis took up the unfinished work, adding a “few contributions” to Benedict’s “fine work” and publishing it under his own name.Francis himself has

It was also released the same day as another joint appearance by Francis & Benedict XVI. While this is not as unique as it once was it is still an amazing sight and an excellent hook for a TV report on the subject.

And if this was not enough reason to make this story newsworthy, the section on faith and family,  given the recent rulings on Gay Marriage from the Supreme Court would surely draw media attention (all emphasis mine):

In Abraham’s journey towards the future city, the Letter to the Hebrews mentions the blessing which was passed on from fathers to sons (cf. Heb 11:20-21). The first setting in which faith enlightens the human city is the family. I think first and foremost of the stable union of man and woman in marriage. This union is born of their love, as a sign and presence of God’s own love, and of the acknowledgment and acceptance of the goodness of sexual differentiation, whereby spouses can become one flesh (cf. Gen 2:24) and are enabled to give birth to a new life, a manifestation of the Creator’s goodness, wisdom and loving plan. Grounded in this love, a man and a woman can promise each other mutual love in a gesture which engages their entire lives and mirrors many features of faith. Promising love for ever is possible when we perceive a plan bigger than our own ideas and undertakings, a plan which sustains us and enables us to surrender our future entirely to the one we love. Faith also helps us to grasp in all its depth and richness the begetting of children, as a sign of the love of the Creator who entrusts us with the mystery of a new person. So it was that Sarah, by faith, became a mother, for she trusted in God’s fidelity to his promise (cf. Heb 11:11).

The family: “A stable union of man and woman“, “a manifestation of the Creator’s goodness, wisdom and loving plan.“, “a plan bigger than our own ideas and undertakings“!

Such a statement would be considered “Fighting words” if uttered by a Bishop on TV.  There would be no shortage of journalists challenging him with hard-hitting questions or side guests raining critique on such a clergyman in the most vehement of terms.

On Memeorandum there would be link after link from Media Matters and Think Progress decrying it as “homophobic”, as contrary to “marriage equality” (a phrase that means absolutely nothing) and leftist bloggers would amplify the attack in an unending stream of paragraphs filled with vitriol.

Yet how does the media react when the Supreme Pontiff, the head of the Worldwide Roman Catholic Church the single most important religious figure in the world releases, in writing a statement that challenges the MSM most cherished belief (next to the sanctity of abortion) and does it in his very first public Encyclical?  What do we hear from the media who has never found a traditional value it wasn’t willing to attack?

Crickets.

All that could be mustered was one post on FiredogLake so weak that in its title it actually states the Pope has excluded adopters from the definition of family (as apparently a homo-centric argument was not strong enough).

Why? Why this conspicuous silence, why does the MSM, when this pope challenges them,  see nothing and know nothing?

Because they are still afraid of a direct confrontation.

They understand that unlike the Gabriel Gomez campaign or the Amnesty Bill an attack on the beloved first Pope from Latin America can be considered by many an attack on Latin Americans in general.  It can actually create a united “Hispanica“.  United against them.

So they will see nothing as they did on the LCWR and they did on lukewarm Catholics (Hi Mrs. Pelosi) in the hope that nobody will notice until one day his “My Chcemy Boga” moment comes and it’s too late.

All is proceeding as the Holy Spirit has planned.

Update:  Added the Sherlock Holmes quote

Update 2: Instalanches are no less welcome a day after the post. If you don’t know what I mean about the whole “Hispanica” bit I plan on posting my entire radio speech about “Hispanica” on Youtube as an audio with illustrations when (and if) time permits

Update 3: Stacy McCain notes a pronouncement of the pope that is likely going to get much more press than the one I noted.

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Olimometer 2.52

Unfortunately all is not proceeding as planned for me as for the 5th straight week I failed to achieve a full paycheck.

Summer is normally a time of the doldrums for bloggers five weeks of not making the weekly mortgage payment is pretty bad.

As always it will be up to you to decide if it becomes six

Update: I have spent the last two hours sending thank you notes for all those who decided to not only end my streak of short payweek’s but kicked in enough to cover last months shortfall.

Thank you so much

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Then the LORD said, “Go outside and stand on the mountain before the LORD; the LORD will be passing by.

A strong and heavy wind was rending the mountains and crushing rocks before the LORD – but the LORD was not in the wind. After the wind there was an earthquake – but the LORD was not in the earthquake. After the earthquake there was fire – but the LORD was not in the fire.

After the fire there was a tiny whispering sound. When he heard this, Elijah hid his face in his cloak and went and stood at the entrance of the cave.

1 Kings 19:11-13b

Mary said, “Behold, I am the handmaid of the Lord. May it be done to me according to your word.

Luke 1:38a

There has been a lot said about Pope’s lately because of the news. The Resignation of Benedict XVI, The month-long period of his Papacy winding down. The media speculation on the upcoming Pope. The New Pope Francis I and the Latino and media going gaga over Francis’ simple moves of humility like this one:

While popes have for centuries washed the feet of the faithful on the day before Good Friday, never before had a pontiff washed the feet of a woman. That one of the female inmates at the prison in Rome was also a Serbian Muslim was also a break with tradition.

But the more I think about all that has happened in the last 60 days my thoughts turn to Pope John Paul…the first.

John Paul I was elected in August of 1978 and served only 33 days as pope before his unexpected death on September 28th 1978. There has been a lot of speculation concerning his short papacy but if you want to understand why his papacy was so short all one has to do is look at two things his selection of a name and who followed him.

Albino Luciani picked the name John Paul in honor of this two predecessors Pope John XXIII who consecrated him as a bishop and Pope Paul VI who made him a Cardinal. While that might be a nice sentimental touch it certainly didn’t symbolize the direction that the Church was destined to go.

Just a month later he would be dead and with a leading liberal a few votes away from election, a young compromise candidate from Poland would take the papacy and everything changed.

John Paul II would transform the church, and the world. He came into the papacy at a time when the secular word was doubting the church and God and predicting its downfall or transformation. He would steer in a direction different than groups like the National Council of churches who decided to bend to the culture. As they faded into irrelevance. He would lay the cornerstone of the modern papacy, help bring down communism and inspire a generation of faithful Catholics and make the Catholic Church the voice of Christianity and Christ throughout the world.

This is the Holy Spirit in action.

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Fast forward to 2013, the successor to both Peter and John Paul II whose Papacy while successful has been under constant attack by secular forces, gave an interesting speech and unexpected speech: (all emphasis mine)

After having repeatedly examined my conscience before God, I have come to the certainty that my strengths, due to an advanced age, are no longer suited to an adequate exercise of the Petrine ministry. I am well aware that this ministry, due to its essential spiritual nature, must be carried out not only with words and deeds, but no less with prayer and suffering. However, in today’s world, subject to so many rapid changes and shaken by questions of deep relevance for the life of faith, in order to govern the bark of Saint Peter and proclaim the Gospel, both strength of mind and body are necessary, strength which in the last few months, has deteriorated in me to the extent that I have had to recognize my incapacity to adequately fulfill the ministry entrusted to me.

And here we see the deep connection with the Spirit in Benedict XVI. He can discern the message requiring a new voice is needed in the Chair of Peter to dynamically lead, but that he still has a task to perform.

And now, let us entrust the Holy Church to the care of Our Supreme Pastor, Our Lord Jesus Christ, and implore his holy Mother Mary, so that she may assist the Cardinal Fathers with her maternal solicitude, in electing a new Supreme Pontiff. With regard to myself, I wish to also devotedly serve the Holy Church of God in the future through a life dedicated to prayer

And now when everyone was speculating over various candidates the man on nobody’s lips Jorge Mario Bergoglio would be elected Francis I who has through his acts already been committing what Elizabeth Scalia calls “Deep Evangelization“.

Imagine the impact on the heart and mind of a reporter who doesn’t believe in much of anything hearing the pope say he loves him; that he expresses respect for her person! Over time, it might bear enormous fruit that would never even bud, by intellectual engagement, alone. Spengler once said “Benedict has a mustard seed, and he’s not afraid to use it.” I think Pope Francis, via the Holy Spirit, may be Benedict’s Mustard Seed.

Considering the timing it’s rather amazing or rather it isn’t if you believe. The Spirit knows the needs of the church all it needs is the faithful to hear and say “Yes.”

Like Benedict XVI.

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Olimometer 2.52

This post wasn’t supposed to exist. I went to bed expecting to write my Easter one when I woke up with the idea for this post.

When it was finished I followed up with the post I meant to write that is scheduled for Easter.

Fortunately for me while I was writing this post and the other DaTipJar got one hit moving myself a little bit closer to this week’s $300 paycheck.

Thanks to that hit only six more Tip Jar hitter kicking in $20 are needed to make this week’s paycheck a reality. Care to be one?




Not much you can add to something like this if you’re Catholic

I think Fr. Z nails it

Oh to be a fly on the wall!

That’s pretty much it.

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Olimometer 2.52

Still holding at $27 for the week’s pay. Can we do better by the end of the day? Hey if you can have two popes praying together anything is possible





News Broke this morning that Scottish Cardinal Keith O’Brien has resigned:

Cardinal O’Brien said in a statement he had already tendered his resignation, due to take effect when he turned 75 next month, but that Pope Benedict “has now decided that my resignation will take effect today”.

As the Observer reported:

Three priests and a former priest in Scotland have reported the most senior Catholic clergyman in Britain, Cardinal Keith O’Brien, to the Vatican over allegations of inappropriate behaviour stretching back 30 years.

The four, from the diocese of St Andrews and Edinburgh, have complained to nuncio Antonio Mennini, the Vatican’s ambassador to Britain, and demanded O’Brien’s immediate resignation. A spokesman for the cardinal said that the claims were contested.

This story has to be a double-edged sword for the MSM. They are of course pleased to see a Cardinal go down if they think it will harm the church.

But the truth is that if these charges are the least bit true the accelerated resignation of this Cardinal (which will be one of the last official acts of Pope Benedict) is not only very good for the Church but highlights a fact of the late Church scandals that the left would like to ignore.

That fact? The vast majority of the church scandals involving minors involved Homosexual acts and Homosexual priests.

Now as I’ve said many times before, a lot Christians fall into the trap of using the sin of Homosexual acts as a club rather than looking at their own sin but for the left this problem is different.

In the current culture any critique of any aspect of Homosexuality is VERBOTEN. As far as some Washington Post reporters are concerned, if you hold the Opinion on Gay Marriage that practically the entire world held 20 years ago you are Bull Connor with the fire hose

The reporter: “As for accuracy, should the media make room for racists, i.e. those people who believe that black people shouldn’t marry white people? Any story on African-Americans wouldn’t be wholly accurate without the opinion of a racist, right?

“Of course I have a bias. I have a bias toward fairness,” the reporter continued. “The true conservative would have the same bias. The true conservative would want the government out of people’s bedrooms, and religion out of government.”

And while John Nolte (a supporter of Civil Unions) notes this is all about weaponizing the issue for the left. This Cardinal is different; how do you weaponize acts that you support?

As Catholics who, you know actually believe, the point is to what is right period, our path is clear:

1. We should encourage and in fact demand the removal of any Such Bishop Cardinal or Priest who does anything this Bishop has done.

2. The moment the left brings up this case we should immediately counter with: “Yes this kind of Sin it totally incompatible with service in the church, particularly the hierarchy.”

3.  When this is used as a club against the Pope, Note that the resignation was already in the works due to his age, it was THIS Pope who proactively took the resignation early.

4. (and most important) Pray for all involved.

BTW if you aren’t doing 3 #4 because you don’t like the people involved you are failing a basic duty of Christianity.