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I’m not stunned – ‘theologian’ Gaillardetz endorsed major dissenting views at LCWR conference August 16, 2010

Posted by Tantumblogo in Basics, Dallas Diocese, General Catholic, scandals.
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<sigh>….So, I’ve posted a bit about the goings on at the annual conference of the Leadership Conference of Women’s Religious (LCWR), held in Dallas last week.  LCWR represents about 80% of the women religious in the US, and is frequently associated with views that contradict the Magisterial teachings of the Church – many are pro-abort, pro-women’s ordination, pro-socialism, pro-gay marriage, etc.  The LCWR leadership provided the critical cover needed by Obama during the final stages in the debate over Obamacare, swinging “pro-life democrats” over to vote for the bill.  I’ve also posted in the past about Dr. Rick Gaillardetz, a theologian who spoke at St. Mark in Plano earlier this year, and who has also espoused a number of views that contradict the clear doctrine of the Church.  Dr. Gaillardetz spoke at the LCWR conference last week, which really tells you all you need to know, but since he came to this site and repeatedly claimed that I was very wrong, that he is completely faithful to the Magisterium, etc, I thought I would go through some of his comments:

“The people of God are watching you, looking for a way forward in their own ecclesial difficulties. As I am sure you know, you are not the only ones experiencing the pain of ecclesial tensions. There are other faithful Catholics who struggle with abuses in ecclesiastical authority on many fronts. They know well of certain bishops who chose the protection of abusing priests over the protection of victims.

Fair enough.  Some bishops did do this.  But is Dr. Gaillardetz pointing towards justifying schismatic views?   Let’s move on:

They see young clerics who emerge from the seminary more preoccupied with their own ontological uniqueness, clerical garb and proper title than with the genuine pastoral needs of God’s people.

Alright, this is nothing more than a cheap shot, and one that cannot possibly be supported by any kind of evidence.  How does one assess whether a young cleric is more concerned about his wearing a cassock or his title, than with the “pastoral needs of the Church?”  And what are the pastoral needs of the Church, in Dr. Gaillardetz (Dr. G) opinion?  Given the crowd, which is very unfriendly towards orthodoxy and anything that smacks of pre-Vatican II, this is nothing more than a put down on the desire of these priests to be faithful to the Magisterial teachings of the Church and to connect with historic, orthodox practices of priests.  I should add here that Dr. G does not feel that the magisterium consists of Scripture, Tradition, and the long held views of the Pope and bishops in communion with him, but theologians, like himself. 

They suffer under an enforced Eucharistic fast necessitated by a decision to place the weight of longstanding practice above the sacramental needs of the people of God.

More code for the crowd – Dr. G is intimating his support for an end to celibacy in the priesthood and for women’s “ordination.”  This is what he means by “Eucharistic fast” and placing the emphasis on “longstanding practice” as opposed to the needs of the people.  This is odd, because no matter what a bishop does or says to a woman, those miraculous gifts conferred on priests will not be transferred to a woman.  It simply cannot occur, and I’d like Dr. G to find one bit of Scripture, or one bit of Tradition, that supports his supposition that women can be priestesses in the New Covenant. Sorry, I can’t give birth.  Women can’t be priests.  Live with it.

They find themselves ashamed when one of their most precious convictions, the dignity of all human life from conception to natural death, is effaced by church actions that suggest that the rights of the unborn eclipse the rights of the already born.

Here, Dr. G conflates support with Obamacare with being pro-life.  In his mind, apparently, being opposed to Obamacare because it demonstrably (as we have seen in New Mexico, Pennsylvania, etc)  expanded federal funding for abortion (see the expansion of Planned Parenthood facilities nationwide) is the same as being opposed to life.  Even though Obamacare only marginally expands medical coverage at truly devastating cost, violates the principle of subsidiarity, and does intend to massively expand funding for abortion, Dr. G and this crowd rabidly support it.  More worringly, is Dr. G’s assertion towards the end of the article (not quoted in this post) that really, the Bishops (USCCB) and the LCWR sisters were really only separated by a bit of tricky wording in the bill.  This is completley false. The USCCB and the LCWR sisters were separated by a radically different vision of what it means to be Catholic and the absolute sacredness of human life in the womb, which made supporting Obamacare impossible, for whatever good it could have done.  Essentially, Dr. G is arguing in favor of trading care for those who are allowed to be born, for care for the unborn.  When he states that those who supported pro-abort Obamacare were protecting unborn life, he is being especially fallacious, but he is repeating an argument that has been tried again and again by those on the left. 

  in the current situation it is getting very difficult to avoid the impression that we are now veering dangerously close to an instance of ecclesial dysfunction. If this is the case, then it suggests that the ecclesial tensions you are experiencing in the present moment may have a significance that goes well beyond your own circumstances.

I find it difficult not to see Dr. G foreseeing schism (ecclesial dysfunction), and almost advocating for it.  He seems to be implying that, if the Church does not conform to the vision of those in attendance at the LCWR conference, the conferees could be in the vanguard of a “new Church,” the formation of which many women religious from the LCWR have been discussing lately with regards to women’s ordination.

Vatican II taught that professed religious do not belong to the church hierarchy, he said. “This means that the unique contributions of professed religious cannot be subsumed under the magisterium’s own responsibility to make fidelity to the apostolic heritage its singular concern.”

To clear up the obfuscatory language, Dr. G is stating that religious should be free to advocate “dissenting” ideas and function outside the Magisterial doctrine of the Faith.  I’d like to know where Vatican II stated this?  Why would the bishops of the Council decide that religious women are somehow free to operate outside the Magisterial doctrine of the Church?  This coincides with Dr. G’s view of theologians, stating that they are free to redefine the Faith in essentially any way they see fit, regardless of the Truth Christ has revealed through His Church.  This must be based on a massive misreading of Dignitatus Humanae, the document on religious liberty produced by Vatican II.  This view is unfortunately consistent with other views Dr. G has expressed in the past.  In a book on marriage once endorsed by the USCCB, before Dr. G’s problematic ideas were found out, he advocates that couples can “discern” whether or not use of artificial contraception is acceptable for them.  This is contrary to the Doctrine of the Faith.  But, you see, Dr. G can argue that it is not, because he takes the entirely unique (and, frankly, heretical view) that only those subjects explicitly defined by a Pope in Ex Cathedra statements are hard articles of Faith that must be adhered to by all Catholics.  Because very few Ex Cathedra statements have ever been made, this means that articles of Faith like the Real Presence, the Divinity of Christ, even the Resurrection, are up for grabs.  When Dr. G commented on my site months ago, he could not formulate an adequate response on any of these issues.   When it comes to this kind of foundational re-definition on what constitutes ‘Truth’ in the Church, I would imagine that St. Cyril, St. Athanasius, St. Augustine, and many others are collectively slapping their heads.  Gaillardetz views are a rebuke of everything those great Doctors of the Church fought and suffered for.

There is much, much more, but this post is getting long.  The more I read of Dr. Gaillardetz, the more I get concerned that he has repeatedly been brought in as a speaker at this diocese, and used to teach at St. Mary’s seminary down in Houston.  Maybe he’ll come by and comment again.  This blog’s getting way more traffic than it did when I first posted on him, so I’m interested in hearing more opinions on his work.

UPDATE: This may be a hard post for alot of folks to digest.  Dr. G does not deal in trifling matters, he advocates views of the Faith that cut to the core on issues of Authority and Truth, and he is a huge proponent of what Pope Benedict XVI describes as the ‘hermeneutic of rupture,’ or a view of the Church and its doctrines after Vatican II that is radically cut off from what came before.  I think his comments on the young priests and their horrid clerical garb are most revealing.  You have to understand what being “pastoral” means to a ‘theologian’ like Dr. G – it means essentially accepting any belief any Catholic wants to come up with and trying to somehow justify that in the light of Faith.  It means not challenging someone to live strictly by the light of revealed Truth, but to bend that truth to suit the whims of the people.  Many young, orthodox priests are unwilling to do that – they believe in the One Truth revealed by Christ through His Church.  And so, they are “unpastoral,” and “unresponsive.”  There is a fear and loathing in Dr. G’s comments that I think are very apparent.  He does not like these “unyielding” young priests, and so they must be marginalized, they must be reduced to impotence.  He sees the radical sisters of the LCWR as the true representatives of the Faith, not these great priests, some of whom I have had the priviledge to meet. 

But the sisters are rapidly aging and attracting almost no new vocations.  Their day is almost done.  The young men in, and coming out of, seminaries are the future of the Church.  The Obama advising Dr. G will have to learn to live with them.

An update from the LCWR conference August 16, 2010

Posted by Tantumblogo in Basics, Dallas Diocese, General Catholic, sickness, silliness.
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As I stated in my post last week, there was a veritable media blackout on the recent LCWR national conference in Dallas.  But, you can’t keep a good woman down, and Sr. Jeanine Gramick, she of the infamous ‘Gramick-Nugent’ writings on homosexuality condemned by the Vatican AND USCCB (but still used by St. Elizabeth Seton in Plano) gave an interview to the ‘Dallas Voice,’ the main ‘gay newspaper’ in town.   She was in town for the LCWR conference, and also spoke at some ‘homosexual resource center’ in Dallas.  During her talk, Sr. Gramick claimed that as many as half of all priests are gay, and that the ‘vast majority’ of Catholic writers and theologians oppose the Magisterial doctrine of the Church on homosexuality.  She further lionized St. Francis Xavier parish in Greenwich village, New York City, for being out and proud in their support for the homosexual lifestyle. 

Well, what can I say?  I seriously doubt her claim that half of all priests are gay, which seems to be a common meme among those advancing a view of homosexuality antithetical to that of the Church.  I once had a commenter here with all kinds of very extreme and, dare I say, bizaare notions regarding homosexuality and the Church make the same claim, and I’ve read it in a number of places since.  If half the priests are gay, I pray they are leading celibate lives.  If they are in active homosexual relationships and unrepentant about it and insist they don’t need to repent and change, then I pray they leave the priesthood, for the good of the souls in their care.   All priests, gay or not, are called to celibacy by Christ, and if they cannot accept that it is their duty to leave.

Regarding the “vast majority” of writers and theologians dissenting, disagreeing with, being heretics about, etc., Church teaching on homosexuality, I am so surprised I don’t know what my name is!  Really?  Catholic writers and “theologians” disagreeing with the Church to the point of apostasizing…..that’s NEVER happened before!!  Wow, the Church must dump all current dogma and adopt the views of these writers/theologians, because, since no theologian has ever apostasized before, they must have found some great unrevealed secrets of the Faith!  And after all, the doctrine of the Faith is decided by popularity contest, as proved by the wonderful experiences of men like St. Athanasius and St. Cyril of Alexandria (and scores more), who never suffered at all against what was popular and supported by the elites in order to insure adherence to the One Truth revealed by Christ!

All sarcasm aside, the notion that “vast majorities” of writers and theologians being in favor of a change in Church doctrine on homosexuality is completely, utterly meaningless.  As I hope the above sarcasm illustrates.

Are you surprised these groups are supporting the Ground-Zero mosque? August 16, 2010

Posted by Tantumblogo in Ecumenism, foolishness, General Catholic, Society.
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Sadly, I am not.  America Magazine, LCWR, NETWORK – if there is something, anything, that flies in the face of traditional views of the United States and common-sense Americana, these guys are almost surely to be found.  All three groups, who also endorse many doctrinal views at odds with the Church, which St. Cyril of Alexandria said insured one “hast been deposed by the Holy Synod and that thou hast now no longer any rank in the Church,” are in favor of this mosque immediately adjacent to the place where radical islamists killed almost 3000 Americans.  I have to wonder, if during previous times when Islam attempted to assert its supremacy over Christendom by force, if there were groups of Christians that sought “common ground” when the Moors overran most of Spain, or would have advocated building a mosque near the gates of Vienna after Jan Sobieski and other Christians turned back the invading Turks there? 

At one time, the United States were considered a Christian nation.  When this country was viewed as such, when it was far more demonstrably such, do you think radical Islam, or even “moderate” Islam, would have attempted to build a mosque anywhere near such hallowed ground, under these kinds of circumstances?  Would that have been tolerated?  Are we really so much more sensitive and multi-culti PC wonderful today, or are we just lost, deluded, and weak?  Is the endorsement of this mosque by the Jesuits at America and the religious sisters at LCWR and NETWORK an example of splendid ecumenism and their support for religious freedom, or is it another sign of their having lost the view of their Faith as the only One and True Faith inspired by Jesus Christ, and an inability to recognize that Islam is implacably intolerant of other religions once it gains the upper hand in a country, or state, or town, or neighborhood? 

I have a suggestion for the dons at America and the good sisters at LCWR.  Why don’t they try holding the next LCWR conference in, no, not Saudi Arabia, but Malmo, Sweden?  Sweden believes in freedom of worship, at least nominally.  Sweden is a modern, oh-so-sophisticated country.  But how would LCWR make out in a town where hundreds of women have been brutally attacked for not wearing the hijab, in neighborhoods where sharia is the de facto law of the land? 

Islam is not ecumenical.  Islam does not understand “dialogue.”  Islam does not reciprocate, unless it feels it possesses a distinct self-interest to do so.  Islam means submission.

Temptations prove Man’s worth August 16, 2010

Posted by Tantumblogo in awesomeness, Basics, General Catholic.
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From My Daily Bread: A Summary of the Spiritual Life by Fr. Anthony J. Paone, SJ, part of the section on temptation, Chapter 50:


1. My Child, temptations are often very profitable to you, distressing and troublesome though they be.  They help to lessen your foolish pride by showing you your weaknesses.  Without temptations you could deceive yourself into a dangerous self-confidence.  They teach you many thinhgs which can help you come closer to Me in your daily life.  They can purify your soul by forcing you to resist evil and practice virtue.  Troubles, affliections, and opposition bring you opportunities for heavenly merit.

2. Temptations prove the real worth of your virtues.  Often you do not really know yourself until you have faced various temptations.  They make your virtues shine out, and they help you to see what spiritual gain you have made.  Anyone can act virtuously when things are going as he desires.  The man who keeps his patience in time of adversity, can rightly hope for a lasting reward from Me.

Were I never tempted, I might never know my real self.  I cannot be sure of my own sincerity and motives until I have proved them by action.  Anyone can talk about a good life, but the only real proof of goodness is living a good life.  I would hate to find out too late that I am completely unworthy of God’s gifts.  My temptations give me a chance to prove how truly I mean it when I say that I want to please God in all things.   

Father of all Truth and Goodness, let me be loyal to Your Holy Will.  Your way is the best and only way to live.  Grant me grace to see my many faults and to overcome them for Your sake.  In all temptations, I want to prefer to die rather than offend You by sin. Amen.

This may not have much benefit for many of my readers, but I need frequent reminders of how often I fall into sin and temptation to sin.  I have a very checkered past, littered with active addictions and many other sins.  Even though I strive to live a life faithful to Jesus Christ and His Truth, I have many areas where I still struggle with sin, and sometimes I’m not even aware of these sins until I reflect back on some of my actions.  Sometimes I feel a terrible hypocrite, having a blog and lecturing on the Catholic Faith, when I am such a frequent and serious sinner.  I recall that in Dante’s vision of hell, some of the worst sufferings were reserved for hypocrites.   But, I can look at the lives of the Saints and realize that even many of these holy people had sins they had to fight past in their lives.  Being reminded of our temptations does not mean failure.  Giving into them does mean a local failure, but even these, if we are properly repentant and work to reform our life, can be used to help us to grow closer to our Lord. 

In our present culture, temptation is frequent.  The dominant message of our culture is to give in.  It takes, it has always taken, a profoundly counter-cultural disposition in order to resist those temptations we are confronted with by the world, the flesh, and the devil.  There are many voices, some of these being ‘within’ the Church, who strive to change the Truth revealed by Christ into an acceptance of many of these temptations.  We are told that times have changed, and we have a better understanding now, and what was once forbidden is now acceptable.  We must resist these voices, especially those within the Church, for they seek to undermine this precious gift we have received from Christ.  Pope St. Leo the Great stated in his letter to the Emperor Leo that the Catholic Faith “is one and true; nothing can be added or subtracted from it.”   He further stated, with regard to adherence from this Truth which is guarded by the successors to St. Peter, that “anyone who dares to secede from Peter’s solid Rock may understand that he has no part or lot in the divine mystery.” 

Many of us are tempted, at times, to dispense with certain Truths of the Faith.  We must follow the example of the great Saints of the Church who knew so well that adherence to that Truth revealed by Christ and entrusted to the care of the Chair of Peter is the only way forward to salvation. 

I must remind myself of this constantly.

Whoa – BBC radio documentary on ‘Useful Idiots’ August 16, 2010

Posted by Tantumblogo in foolishness, General Catholic, sickness, Society.
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How is it that the state-owned BBC is somehow more ‘free’ to produce a report like this, than our so wonderfully privately owned and ‘free’ media?  A brilliant documentary from the BBC examining the phenomenon of useful idiots, those intellectuals who, for many reasons, will embrace any lie in order to advance some agenda, almost invariably leftist.  It’s brilliant.  “There are some things so stupid only an intellectual could believe them.”  The BBC report also takes apart the New York Slimes, and in particular, lead correspondent Walter Duranty’s, support for Stalin.  Duranty was a bondage/domination fetishist who wrote lurid “satanic” poetry and had crosses knifed in his chest – something that would not be received as well in the 1930s as it might today.  As such, Stalin’s NKVD was able to blackmail him into complete sycophancy for the genocidal Soviet regime.

Audio only.  Part 1 covers Stalin and his Western useful idiots, part 2 more recent useful idiots, such as those defending the radically islamic theocracy in Iran and fanatical islamic terror.

In a number of cases, these useful idiots embraced Stalin and his tactics out of a personal desire to see those vast swaths of society they hated liquidated.  The poor, the common, the brown-skinned, the less perfect, all were targets of this hatred.  This includes the likes of George Bernard Shaw and H.G. Wells.  Both were big fans of eugenics and “family planning.”  Almost all the big lights in abortion, contraception, etc., were committed leftists and Stalinists.

I highly encourage all to listen to both parts.  One final comment: Duranty participated in satanic sexual escapades that one commenter in the audio states left him without a soul (or a soul belonging to satan) – thus perfect to believe in any evil.  I pray he converted before his death.

Admin Note – “Brother Juniper” link August 16, 2010

Posted by Tantumblogo in Admin.
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All –

I received a welcome e-mail over the weekend informing me that a link in my blogroll had gone from being a blog for “Brother Juniper,” who used to comment frequently at Fr. Z’s,  to an internet dating site.  I’ve deleted the link from my blogroll, thanks for the heads up and sorry for any inconvenience!