Fr. George Rutler on the mandate/persecution March 6, 2012Posted by tantamergo in Basics, Dallas Diocese, disaster, General Catholic, persecution, sadness, scandals, sickness, Society.
This is rapidly becoming a full blown persecution. Many, many Catholics must wake up and understand what is happening around them:
In March of 1938, when the naïve among his contemporaries still thought they might cut a deal with the National Socialists, Winston Churchill saw his country “descending incontinently, fecklessly, the stairway which leads to a dark gulf.” A gulf beckons today, and no amount of forced optimism or self-conscious jollity will stop the descent to its shadows. There is nothing inevitable about what lies ahead, but providence will overcome fatalism only if people absorb what Pope Benedict XVI said last January: “…it is imperative that the entire Catholic community in the United States come to realize the grave threats to the Church’s public moral witness presented by a radical secularism which finds increasing expression in the political and cultural spheres.” [And the Pope says this as a man with a profound affection for the United States]
Those words would probably confuse the comfortable man who objected to me about a prayer that mentioned “enemies of the Faith.” He said with suburban unction that “there are no enemies anymore.” He was unaware that somewhere around 200 million Christians live under daily threat in 197 countries. Last year, nearly 100,000 Christians were killed because of their Christianity, in lands from North Korea and China, to Afghanistan, Iran, Somalia, Laos, Sudan, and on and on, including some supposed allies of our nation, such as Saudi Arabia, Pakistan and Egypt.
The man who saw no enemies might plead with good reason that the media have, to put it mildly, inadequately publicized these persecutions. That kind of plea, however, can no longer be sustained when elements of our own government have declared war on the Church, and persecution both subtle and blatant has gone domestic. Catholics have not been prepared to deal with this, and some have even been compliant. If we rely only on institutional bureaucracy to be our line of defense, we may find it to be a Maginot Line. The Allies were unprepared when Churchill spoke in 1938 because people wanted butter not guns, but found soon enough that butter was being rationed, and guns were pointing at them.
Pope Benedict spoke of “a worrying tendency to reduce religious freedom to mere freedom of worship [indeed, the Obama Administration uses this nebulous term regularly, in place of freedom of religion] without guarantees of respect for freedom of conscience.” It is not possible to look through stained glass windows, so the man who saw no enemies outside his air-conditioned and centrally heated church will be surprised if he tries to visit a Catholic hospital two years from now and finds that there is none, only a dark gulf. The Archbishop of Chicago has considered that possibility if the Health and Human Services regulations are not rescinded.
Hope is a theological virtue. Optimism is not. The wise have warned that pessimists are unhappy fools and optimists are happy fools. But the hopeful are not foolish. Christ began his war with a forty-day battle in a desert filled with wild beasts, but as they prowled about, He could hear angels.
The sad thing is, our prime antagonist looks more and more likely to get re-elected, something I thought almost impossible 6 months ago. If so, we could be in for the first nationwide, government-sanctioned persecution, ever.
Daily Adoration now at Cathedral downtown? March 6, 2012Posted by tantamergo in awesomeness, Basics, Dallas Diocese, Eucharist, General Catholic, Glory, Interior Life, Tradition, Virtue.
I received a cryptic e-mail asking for more people to volunteer for Adoration at the Sacred Heart Cathedral Shrine of the Virgin of Guadalupe in downtown Dallas. The e-mail stated they are having Adoration and need people for various times Monday-Saturday generally from 9am to 8pm. So, I looked it up online and found the Cathedral is having Adoration Monday through Saturday from 9am to 9pm and on Sunday from 8am to 4 pm. The Adoration is in the chapel, not the main Cathedral. They must be having Adoration through some of the Masses, especially on Sunday, which is rather unusual.
Adoration is a big step to a proper understanding of the reality of the Blessed Sacrament as the Real Body and Blood of Our Lord Jesus Christ. It is desirable to have as much Adoration as possible, especially in churches or Cathedrals where, for some reason, the Tabernacle is not the centerpiece of the altar and the entire sanctuary.
As I said, they are looking for people to fill Adoration time slots. You can contact Marge Giangiulio at firstname.lastname@example.org to sign up.
The lighter side of Michael Voris March 6, 2012Posted by tantamergo in Admin, awesomeness, Basics, Dallas Diocese, fun, General Catholic, North Deanery, silliness, Virtue.
Before I get to the heavy stuff later today or tomorrow (and much very heavy stuff there was), I wanted to give my appraisal of Michael Voris as a person and man. Many people in media create a false image of themselves on the air. The stories of the genial, jovial morning TV host who is a terror off the air are legion. Not Michael Voris. What you see in the many different programs offered on RealCatholicTV is what you get in real life. In fact, he’s even better in real life, as he is very genuine, kind, fun-loving, and engaging. My kids loved him. Here are some photos of him telling some “scary” stories to my kids Sunday night (this is after a very full day of Mass, meeting many people, the conference, dinner afterwards, and he had gotten perhaps 3-4 hours of sleep the night before):
We had a lot of fun at dinner that night. Benedict somehow absconded with two cups of coffee and drank them all, and was crazy all night:
That’s friends Jordan H. at far left and Phillipa G. far right.
To say that Michael Voris is working tirelessly for the Faith would be quite an understatement. He was working until 3 in the morning both nights he stayed with us. He has literally travelled all around the world in the last month speaking to different groups and promoting and defending the Faith. But even with all that travel and, I’m sure, great fatigue, Michael was always a pleasure to work with and easy to get along with. He met dozens of people Sunday and always took time to talk with everyone who wanted to speak with him. He was a Catholic gentleman through and through.
The Michael Voris Conference was INCREDIBLE! March 6, 2012Posted by tantamergo in awesomeness, Basics, Dallas Diocese, fun, General Catholic, North Deanery, Tradition, Virtue.
What a weekend! I can’t cover all that occurred in one post, so I’ll break it up into several posts today and possibly over the next few days. This post is just an overview of the conference. For those who did not attend, you missed something truly fantastic. Just for starters, I’ll say this: Michael Voris has great depth. He is far more than just an apologist, reacting to issues in the culture as they occur. He is quite a theologian. He gave a talk on the relationship between masculinity, feminity, the order of created being, and the relationship of all to our Divine Creator that was deep, comprehensive, and powerful. And he tied it together into a stinging critique – truly, a theological de-construction – of so much of the current, very damaging, makeup of the Church, with it’s overwhelming feminine characteristics.
My great friend Steve Boor recorded the event on his pocket PC. Audio quality is so-so, but you can listen to the talk here if you missed it (or, if you want to listen to it again, this is something that merits repeated listening in order to capture all the nuances and details of the content).
We had a good crowd. I owe Colleen Hammond a great debt of thanks for all the work she did, including getting the word out to people in other locales, which significantly boosted attendance. I also thank Jim and Vicki Middleton, Cori Hyland, Steve and Veronica Kellmeyer, and again Steve Boor for all the help they provided in making this conference very successful. And thanks to my parents for keeping some of the kids!
About that crowd – what an amazing group of faithful, energetic, devoted Catholics. At the Q&A session after Michael’s talk, the one overarching question was this: “What can we do to re-build the Church, to restore the Faith to its greatness?” For one, you can go to talks like this! But I’ll have much more on Michael’s recommendations on that front later, including some that were given in conversations outside the conference itself.
For the future, you should know this: we will likely have another, much better organized and especially publicized conference. I didn’t do a good job of publicizing the conference, I relied too much on this blog which doesn’t have a great reach. One of the great things I experienced was meeting people from around the area who want very much to try to do everything in their power to support and defend the Faith, and to spread the Faith to others. There was much willingness to help organize another conference. I pray we may do so again in the future, although Michael’s travels have him pretty much booked through October already! That poor man has been all over the world in the last month – Nigeria, the Phillipines, Louisiana, Texas – he didn’t know what city he was in Sunday morning! Please keep Michael in your prayers, that he may maintain his strength as he spends himself in his apostolate.
Ohhh, I wish all of you could have been there! There was so much inspiration at this conference! There were so many good, devoted Catholics there! And the talk was sublime and empowering! If you didn’t make it to the conference this time, you absolutely MUST attend the next one we have!
All glory to God for this! Thank you so much Lord for sending all these wonderful people to this area and Your Church, to glorify Your Holy Name and give all honor, love, and devotion to You.
Much more very soon!