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Are most American Catholics actually Protestants? May 18, 2010

Posted by Tantumblogo in awesomeness, Dallas Diocese, General Catholic, Latin Mass.
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Michael Voris of RealCatholicTV makes the case:

It does disturb me when Amazing Grace is sung in a Catholic Church.  And I think his case is pretty well made.  It is increasingly difficult to find a visible ‘Catholic identity’ anymore – the Body of Christ has been subsumed by the larger culture.  This is something Pope Benedict has been fighting against throughout his pontificate – we need to grow our Catholic identity, and that starts with the Sacred Liturgy.  That’s why the resurgence of Latin Mass is very important – it is a visible, outward symbol or our inner identity as Catholics.  That’s why adoration, devotionals, novenas, statuary, churches designed with a reserved sanctuary  – these are all key identifiers of our Catholic faith. 

The Church tried very hard with Vatican II to accomplish a great ecumenical goal, and it failed.  The protestants had no real interest in unity, and the Church was badly hurt by all the sudden changes and experimentation.

We need to get back to being Roman Catholics.

You might have a big family if: May 18, 2010

Posted by Tantumblogo in awesomeness, General Catholic.
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Funny!  Eric Sammons penned these funnies concerning what used to be very common, large Catholic families [with  my comments]:

You might have a big family if…

1) You don’t park your van, you dock it. [not a van, but Suburban.  We can have one more kid before we max it out].

2) When you go out for a family walk in the neighborhood, you need a traffic cop.

…..

5) You have been asked hundreds of times, “don’t you know how they are made?” [at least hundreds of times, and most disturbingly, by fellow Catholics]

6) There is nothing “mini” about your van. [see post 1]

7) You are constantly asked the name of the day care you run when you go out.

8) You don’t have a shoe rack in your house, but instead a shoe room. [Lord, in my house, with my wife and kids, it’s a shoe house]

…..

10) You have grandchildren older than some of your own children  [not yet, but whatever God wills]

Those are pretty good.  Speaking of big families, my wife comes from a family with 9 kids (plus two waiting in heaven).  Her father has 62 grandkids and 3 great grand kids.  I love taking uptight waspy types to their frequent family gatherings.

h/t http://www.creativeminorityreport.com/

Bishop Vasa weighs in with a moderate voice on immigration May 18, 2010

Posted by Tantumblogo in General Catholic, Society.
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I have read some good things about Bishop Robert Vasa of Bend, OR.  Some months ago, I did a post on his views on excommunication and the alternative magisterium it seems some of our priests and religious are trying to establish. 

Now, he has written a piece in his diocesan newspaper with a more moderate voice on immigration than we have heard recently from various cardinals and bishops.  In the closing paragraph, he states:

There is a form of injustice done to the American people when our borders are not respected but there is also a possibility that a grave injustice could be done to an undocumented worker if too harsh a solution is enacted. It is certainly not right for anyone to violate or seek to circumvent the immigration laws of this nation but unless we know all of the reasons and factors that led a person to the decision to come to this country or to remain illegally, I suggest that it is very dangerous for us to judge that person as a “criminal.” The issue of illegal residency in the United States is a most complex and troubling social reality. Very few of the slogans, pro or con, resonate with me. I do find, however, that thinking about real, identifiable people, concrete human persons and human families, makes it much easier to see that those who cross our borders or remain here illegally are not necessarily evil or wicked men or women but simply people with human aspirations and longings and dignity. Crossing a border illegally does not eliminate that person’s right to be treated as a brother or sister. Remaining in this country illegally does not eliminate that person’s human dignity.

I don’t fully agree with all Bishop Vasa says, but I respect his opinions, and I respect the fact that he did not call the people of Arizona “Nazi’s” or ‘modern day know-nothings’ for trying to gain some control over the rampant lawlessness they are enduring on their southern border.  I don’t think many people are talking about deporting the millions of illegal immigrants here presently – at least no one serious.  But at the same time, there seem to be few major voices who will recognize that the conditions on our southern border, with drug violence, military incursions, rape, kidnapping, and murder, are intolerable.  We can have a reasoned discussion about how to assimilate the millions of illegals – after the border situation is dealt with.  We can talk about how  many legal immigrants to allow a year – I’m sure most Americans would be ready to allow in an almost limitless number – after we get the border situation under control.  That must come first.  I don’t care if we build a fence, hire thousands more border agents, put up signs, or build a castle wall with a moat, there has to be some very reasonable method of providing for security along our southern border.  With the terrorist threats this nation lives with, and with Iran coming ever closer to possessing a nuclear weapons capability, leaving the border in its present chaos is a non-starter.  But that’s just my opinion.

In the meantime, perhaps we can follow the example of Bishop Vasa and Archbishop Chaput and tone down the rhetoric a bit.  Bishops and cardinals jumping up and down and using inflammatory rhetoric isn’t good for the immigration debate, or for the Church.

Resignation of Fr. Robert Crisp from Sacred Heart Rowlett involved inappropriate contact May 18, 2010

Posted by Tantumblogo in Dallas Diocese, General Catholic, North Deanery.
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As I stated in a post yesterday, Fr. Robert Crisp has resigned as pastor of Sacred Heart parish in Rowlett.   I did not state this yesterday, but he has resigned due to ‘inappropriate contact’ or ‘boundary issues’ with minor girls.  A letter was sent by the diocese to all parishioners at Sacred Heart explaining some of the reasons for Fr. Crisp’s resignation.  The situation did not merit an arrest or anything like that – it was not a violation of the law, per se’, but these events were in public and involved the pastor touching in a manner that was inappropriate.  I have asked for a copy of the letter from the parish and diocese, but have not received 0ne.

I did have a talk with a representative of the diocese, in the form of Fr. Henry Petter, who tried to answer some of my questions.  He basically confirmed the above. 

I wanted to bring this subject to light because, while this situation has been made public to an extent, essentially no one outside diocesan staff and the parishioners at Sacred Heart know the reason why Fr. Crisp resigned.  If Fr. Crisp should return from leave and have discerned that he should remain an active priest, I think it important that knowledge of this event be available to whatever future parish he is assigned to.  I’m also trying to determine just what the policy is in a situation is like this – I’ve been told that these unfortunate events did not merit all the automatic provisions of the Dallas policy since this was not really sexual abuse and there wasn’t a child involved.  I disagree with this last bit – someone under 18 is still legally a child, whether they are 8 or 16.  The girls involved were in the 15-16 year old range. 

I’ll keep following this story.  It is a tragedy that events like this continue to happen.  I will continue to say extra prayers for priests and for this diocese.  I pray you will join me.

Sexual autonomy the goal of the heterodox? May 18, 2010

Posted by Tantumblogo in General Catholic.
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Larry D. at Acts of the Apostasy has a post up having fun with ‘Moonbat Central,’ also known as The Open Tabernacle, for their list of ten things Pope Benedict XVI should do to truly renew the Church, as he says is his goal.  It’s a great post, and Larry D. does his usual thorough and humorous fisking.   Essentially, the heterodox types over at Open Tabernacle want the Pope to beg the forgiveness of those heretical theologians he has previously chastised, and to reopen the discussion on women’s ordination, contraception, and other issues (translation, to succumb to heretical demands to change 2000 years of Catholic doctrine).  You probably know how I feel about that.

But I read something else this morning, a review of a book by Fr. Joseph Wilson called Amchurch Comes Out: The U.S. Bishops, Pedophile Scandals and the Homosexual Agenda.  The book itself is what you’d a expect – a long compendium of abuses and scandals involving priests, bishops, seminarians, and diocesan and USCCB bureaucrats.  The book makes the case that there has been a veritable homosexual invasion of the clergy and that the sexual perversion in the clergy has extended up to include numerous bishops, who then seek to either tolerate such behaviors in their priests, or to promote it.  The book also chronicles the collapse in Mass attendance, the horrid catechesis, and other indicators of the Church in decline.  But why?  Why have so many in the Church, especially since Vatican II, continued to pursue policies that have been demonstrably shown to cause grave damage to the Church and the faithful?  This is the interesting part.  Here, Fr. Wilson says:

As I was writing the preface to “Amchurch Comes Out,” a lay theologian offered a thought on this subject which I found so illuminating in its simplicity, I asked his permission to quote him. He said, “Years of watching the situation carefully have convinced me that it really IS all about sexual autonomy. People don’t turn institutions upside down because they’d rather hear the Mass in English. You can do that without destroying buildings and the structure of religious life, and catechesis. You turn institutions upside down to support a ‘complete change in teleological purpose’ in your life — and eliminate unpleasant reminders that maybe your new purpose, sexual autonomy, isn’t such a great idea.”

And the more I thought about it, the more sense that made. Perhaps you’d prefer to say simply, “personal autonomy,” rather than “sexual autonomy” — although you might revisit that after reading Paul’s book. But I think my theologian friend hit a bull’s-eye. If sexual autonomy is one’s goal, one will not want the traditional Mass as the central symbol of the Faith, for the very form it takes will always seem a reproach: one will want a pliable liturgy, something one can shape to one’s whims. One will obviously want to deconstruct Religious Life as well, that living image of the words of the Lord Jesus, “Seek first the Kingdom of God.” And as for catechesis: well, why else would one promulgate religion textbooks that avoided subjects such as commandments, precepts of the Church, original sin; why else would one find situation ethics attractive — unless one were anxious to usher in a new religion, one much more amenable to one’s whims.

The elimination of everything which reproaches our constant search for gratification goes a long way to explaining the postconciliar crises.

This is an interesting point, one I haven’t seen put so clearly before.  Does it make sense?  Are many of the changes in the Church driven by those who seek to turn the entire Church upside down in order to achieve their end – a vision of ‘personal liberty’ so all encompassing that all previous Church doctrine on sexual behavior can be chucked out the window?  Can a desire to have the Church not only sanction, but celebrate what have traditionally been seen as perverse sexual acts be the driving force behind the ‘hermeneutic of rupture?’ 

I don’t think the brief book review necessarily proves the point, but when looked at through this lens, the actions of many in the Church make a great deal more sense.  And we can also see the poisonous effect the very vague language about the ‘inviolability of personal conscience’ in Guadium et Spes at work through this agenda towards sexual autonomy.  For, if one’s conscience is truly paramount, a ‘good catholic’ can come to the conclusion that God intends them to use contraception  – so long as they have properly discerened, right?   This is exactly the line of thinking many progressives in the Church use to reject, and call for a change to, Church doctrine.  And so many of the issues most dear to the progressives are sexual in nature – gay marriage, ending priestly celibacy, abortion, contraception, divorce, adultery, you name it. 

To see where this leads, see the Anglican Church.

A disappointment – Laura Bush is pro-choice and pro gay marriage May 18, 2010

Posted by Tantumblogo in Abortion, foolishness, Society.
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Well, she’s not Catholic, so she’s not a dissenter, but I had a good deal of admiration for former First Lady Laura Bush during her husband’s presidency.  While I disagreed with many of Bush’s policies as president and could not describe myself as a fervent supporter (more like, a grudging toleration due to the fact that he was better than the alternative), I always respected Laura Bush.  I thought she carried herself with dignity and aplomb, and I thought she was a good spokesperson for the United States.  Unfortunately, my respect for her has plummeted  – she announed last week on Larry King that she is in favor of gay marriage:

 “There are a lot of people who have trouble coming to terms with [gay marriage] because they see marriage as traditionally between a man and a woman,” she said, adding, “when couples are committed to each other and love each other, that they ought to have, I think, the same sort of rights that everyone has.” Mrs. Bush also mentioned that she believes the legalization of gay marriage is forthcoming. 

Even worse, Ms. Bush also announced that she thinks abortion should remain legal, because all the leftist stories were true – she and her husband really are evil soul suckers totally beholden to Halliburton and other major corporations, and had to offer blood sacrifices to Moloch in order to stay in power.   No, she didn’t say that last part, but she did say it was important ‘for medical reasons and other reasons,’ that abortion remain legal.   Wow, there’s a deeply reasoned argument!   Babies should be violently torn limb from limb and/or scalded to death with saline for ‘other reasons.’ 

A priest I greatly respect told me earlier today that we must emphasize abortion this way: it’s about never, ever, doing harm to a child.  Too often, we get sucked into the game of thinking about ‘rights,’ or extreme situations like rape or incest – none of that matters if your focus is on doing all you can to insure that a child does not come to harm.  Who can argue with that?  I don’t know how Laura Bush has come to hold the opinions she does – it is odd to me that she could be married to a man who is ostensibly pro-life and against gay marriage, and still hold these views.  To me, that means they aren’t very passionate about those views, or else one would think it would be a problem.  Perhaps they are as vapid as they were portrayed in the major media?

It further reinforces that we can trust no one but the Lord.  Christ revealed His Truth through His Church, and that Truth says that abortion is always and everywhere intrinsically evil in every single case, no matter what.  That Truth also says that homosexuality is fundamentally disordered, and that marriage exists only between one man and one woman.   Until very recently, these were truths that all Christian churches shared, but now the Roman Catholic Church is one of the few to boldly proclaim them.  And for that, we will continue to be persecuted.