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Voris in high dudgeon March 29, 2011

Posted by Tantumblogo in awesomeness, Basics, Dallas Diocese, General Catholic, North Deanery, scandals, sickness.
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Picking up the theme from yesterday, Voris goes on to analyze the true nature of those who decry others with the term ‘taliban Catholics:’

That’s a pretty strong statement, but could it be likely?  Could it be that those who lash out at faithful Catholics are doing so based on an insecurity in their own faith?  I think the possibility exists, but it’s one of those “is it a mortal sin” kind of issues – we really can’t know the state of someone’s soul, or their relationship with God.  It seems reasonable, and could explain a great deal.  Are those who lash out at those defending the Faith as ‘taliban Catholics’ actually acting out of insecurity in their  own lack of faith – does that explain so many seemingly inexplicable actions with regard to the Mass, music, art, architecture, etc?

I could not agree more with the ‘loving relationship’ analogy Voris uses for our relationship with God.  I get alot of weird looks for always being in prayer, or spiritual reading, etc., even in public.  But that’s how I feel – I feel an irresistable urge to be closer to the Lord all the time!  Even some of my family doesn’t get it, and they get annoyed by it.  I think that, too, may be a reflection of a certain insecurity – why do you have to be so holy roller and make me feel bad?  I can’t help it – and we are called to have this kind of irresistable passion for our Lord.  I’m not saying I’m a particularly holy person – I still see many, many glaring deficiencies in my relationship with God and the Church, but I’m trying.  I do tend to put my faith in a box of my making.  But I do feel that great call, that urgency to be near the Lord.  That’s why I write this blog, even though at times I think it may not be the best path, spiritually.

Or, I could be a complete fool on all counts.  Tell my how wrong I am – I do try to change sometimes if someone sees a problem!

If you want serious Catholic higher education…….. March 29, 2011

Posted by Tantumblogo in asshatery, Basics, Dallas Diocese, disaster, General Catholic, sadness, sickness, Society.
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…….you better be prepared to do it at home.  Seriously.  I think this will be the future of faithful, Catholic higher education – online programs handled by a very few faithful Catholic colleges and universities that will be widely disseminated on teh Intrawebs.  I think the vast majority of present day Catholic universities will either cease to exist or become entirely secularized.  Those who want to learn the Faith, the Faith of Scripture and Tradition, will have to do so largely on their own.

Recent events make plain that Catholic universities are in an advanced state of decay, even implosion.  When the President of Gonzaga University (formerly Jesuit) cites Ex Corde Ecclesia to justify a production of ‘The Vagina Monologues,’ a play about lesbianism and child rape (as good things), when Seattle University (formerly Jesuit) maintains a very friendly business relationship with Planned Parenthood, when Marquette University(formerly Jesuit) is handing out benefits to same sex ‘domestic partners,’ when Notre Dame invites the most pro-abort president in US history to receive an honorary Doctor of Law degree – it paints a grim picture.  Even relatively faithful universities are under constant attack – such as the recent history at the University of Dallas.  But we have seen nominally Catholic university after supposedly Catholic college do one thing after another that directly contradicts the proclaimed Doctrine of the Faith, even in defiance of direct papal interventions. Prior to Pope Benedict’s visit to the US in 2008, many nominally Catholic college adminstrators were in great fear of being taken to task by the Pope during a meeting with the heads of higher ed scheduled during the visit.  That the Pope did not give them the severe scolding, even upbraiding, they deserved is a testament to his extreme kindness – perhaps too kind, given the circumstances.  But as present trends continue, where will young Catholics be able to attend college in 15 or 20 or 40  years?  Will any Catholic colleges still be faithful to the Magisterium?  Can any parents, serious about their faith, countenance spending tens, even hundreds of thousands of dollars, to send their kids to colleges that not only don’t support or proclaim the Faith, but actively work against, so undermining it that most students actually LOSE their faith while matriculating there?

I’m not sure there is much long term future in Catholic higher education, outside of a very few universities that, I pray, will remain faithful.  Most of the big name unis are gone – they are rapidly moving into ‘post-Catholic, post-Christian, post-modern’ mode.  Good luck with that.  There may be some public schools that are a better bet for sustaining and growing the Faith than the vast majority of nominally Catholic schools – A&M being one of them, I must admit (reluctantly).  But I think vigilance will be the key – don’t just assume that because such and such school has a good reputation that the Faith is being conveyed effectively and with passion – you’ll have to investigate that yourself.

An important Lenten act – go to Confession March 29, 2011

Posted by Tantumblogo in awesomeness, Basics, Dallas Diocese, General Catholic, Interior Life, North Deanery.
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There are three major penitential acts during Lent – prayer, fasting, and almsgiving.  But a fourth should be Confession, especially if one does not regularly go to Confession (in which case……Sr. Rudolfina of the Sacred Heart is glaring at you).  Many parishes have extra times for Confession during Lent.  One parish I know of, St. Mark in Plano, has made an extra effort to make Confession available – they have Confession every day, Monday through Saturday, for the next 2 weeks.  The times are all from 6:30 to 8, except for Friday, which is from 4:30-5:30 and Saturday, 3-5.  Usually, there three priests to hear Confessions, so lines should be at a minimum.  That’s 18 hours of Confession over the next 2 weeks.  Other parishes are hosting large conclaves of priests at 7 pm, check out the bulletins to find them. 

St. Mark has pretty generous times for Penance/Confession as it is – kudos to Fr. Smith for adding even more time during Lent.  Confession is a marvelous opportunity to get back into the life of Sacramental Grace, or to receive extra Grace and find areas of imperfection that are keeping us from being filled even more with God’s Love.  Confession should really be a regular activity for every Catholic, but if it’s not, now is a great time to start.  I know it can be difficult at times to recite one’s failings to another person, but that is another benefit of the Sacrament – by admitting them to someone else, they become more real and more amendment of heart and soul can occur to make one less likely to commit sin in the future.

Something that needs to make a comeback March 29, 2011

Posted by Tantumblogo in awesomeness, Basics, Dallas Diocese, North Deanery.
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At one time not long ago, it would be very rare not to find a priest wearing a cassock and biretta when out of doors.  Nowadays, both are pretty rare, but making something of a comeback.  I repeat my offer to buy any diocesan priest in Dallas either a cossack or biretta, or both, if they will promise to wear them at least semi-regularly! 

Kudos to Fr. Longenecker.  Why the biretta and cassock?  Because it immeasurably strengthens visible witness and Catholic identity.  The black suit with collar is OK, but the cassock is a much stronger statement.  The biretta – same deal.  The roman hat is OK, but the biretta is just awesome.  Both look, frankly, very cool, too.

The capello romano. Strike a blow for Catholic identity!

I know one local priest who wears the capello romano on certain occasions.  I know another few who wear the biretta.  Most all of our traditions did not occur by accident.  Thought went into them, sometimes much, much thought, and they have value.  Let’s see fine priestly wear come back, our priests are very worthy of it!

If you are not with Christ, you are against Him March 29, 2011

Posted by Tantumblogo in Abortion, awesomeness, Basics, Dallas Diocese, General Catholic, Interior Life, North Deanery, religious.
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In light of the recent Voris video on the calumny frequently directed at faithful, traditional Catholics, this bit of wisdom from Divine Intimacy, written by Fr. Gabriel of St. Mary Magdalen, OCD, came to mind, from Chapter 112, The Power of Jesus:

“He that is not with Me, is against Me” (Matt 12:30). Christianity does not tolerate indifference. He who is not firmly on Christ’s side, working with Him for the extension of His kingdom, by this very fact is opposed to Him and to what is good.  He is an enemy of Christ and a partisan of evil. To omit the good one could do and outght to do is evil and is consenting to the extension of evil.

The first condition necessary for victory over evil is active co-operation in thw work of Christ in union with with our brethren. The second condition is vigilance. Jesus warns us that the enemy of good is lying in wait. Even after he leaves a soul he is ready to return, more powerful than before, “with seven other spirits more wicked than himself” (Luke 11:26) if he finds the soul empty and open to his snares. To halt the approach of evil we must watch in prayer, filling our heart with God so that there will be no place in it for the enemy.  And there is no place when the soul is wholly united to God through the acceptance and observance of His Word, of His Will.

Jesus also remarked on the relative emphasis we should place on our adherence to God’s Word and Will, even against the preferences of family and friends and all external pressures: “Yea rather, blessed are they who hear the Word of God and keep it.” (Luke 11:28)

There are many in the Church who do a great deal of good, but who fatally undermine that good with views or actiosn that are counter to the Doctrine of the Faith.  This is a very serious problem.  We see it in politicians, in priests, in notable laity, even in bishops at times.  These episodes have led to great scandal and confusion among the faithful, and are a prime reason for the poor and confused catechesis and lack of adherence to basic Catholic dogma. Sacred Scripture and Sacred Tradition reveal that this scandal, this dissent, this confusion and even heresy, is incredibly offensive to God, as I believe the excerpt above, one small example among countless others, indicates.  It is not calumny or anger to point out when others fall short of the Truth Christ has revealed through His Church, who publicly oppose the Word, the Will, of God.  In fact, it is an act of high charity, and something Christ specifically told us to do (correction being the first spiritual work of Mercy):

But if thy brother shall offend against thee, go, and rebuke him between thee and him alone. If he shall hear thee, thou shalt gain thy brother.

[16] And if he will not hear thee, take with thee one or two more: that in the mouth of two or three witnesses every word may stand. [17] And if he will not hear them: tell the church. And if he will not hear the church, let him be to thee as the heathen and publican. [18] Amen I say to you, whatsoever you shall bind upon earth, shall be bound also in heaven; and whatsoever you shall loose upon earth, shall be loosed also in heaven. (Matt 15:15-18)

Voris unloads against ‘Taliban Catholic’ slur March 29, 2011

Posted by Tantumblogo in asshatery, Basics, Dallas Diocese, disaster, foolishness, General Catholic, North Deanery, scandals, sickness.
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‘Progressive catholics’ who do not like the growing influence of faithful Catholics on the internet have come up with a slur intended to end any debate and insure victory for their side – ‘taliban Catholic.’  The term is meant to tie faithful Catholics who oppose ‘progressive’ trends in the Church to the muslim fanatics who blow themselves and others up, or murder innocent women and children, or who insist on a fanatical implementation of their faith in the public square in regions where they hold dominance.  This is a most noxious slur, and is a lazy invective invented by John Allen of the National ‘catholyc’ Distorter and it has been used frequently by the head of the ‘progressive’ Salt+Light TV based out of Canada, Fr. Thomas Rosica.  Well, someone, perhaps one of these two, must have pointed that slur at Michael Voris again, and he’s having none of it:

I think Voris hits on a substantial reason for this invective – via their dominance in mainstream, nominally Catholic publications that for some reason seem to be prevalent in virtually every parish in the country (and in chanceries), the ‘progressives’ held a virtual monopoly on public Catholic discourse for decades.  That has come to an end, and is, I am sure, most unsettling to the ‘progressives.’  Hence, the attempt to end the debate by painting traditional or faithful, whichever, Catholic bloggers and others in new media as ‘taliban.’  It’s an attempt to place us outside the bounds of reasonable discourse and have our opinions immediately disregarded, if not silenced altogether.  It’s a tactic we’ve seen the left use again and again with various political movements, be it the Tea Party types or pro-lifers or conservatives in general. It’s nothing more than a tactic, but it should be outside the bounds of reasonable discourse, and I think Voris is right that it treads very closely to sinful calumny.

While Voris is painting with a broad brush as he must, I believe one can reasonably tie the ‘Distorter’ type crowd to many of the most vexing, saddening problems afflicting the Church.  Going well beyond the use of invective, I think Voris is hinting at far darker, far more harmful actions taken by progressives that have seriously hurt individual lives and the Church as a whole.  I think many faithful Catholics who have striven to help improve the Church or have fought against various actions of the ‘progressive’ crowd can relate to these hints.  It is breathtaking the extent to which some of these deeply entrenched folks will go to protect what they see as their little fiefdom. 

I pray this video has the desired effect, but I’m not holding my breath.  Some time ago, I wrote a piece directed at this slur but decided not to post it – it is difficult to remain within the bounds of charity when responding to this slur.