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Providence! – UPDATED! July 25, 2011

Posted by Tantumblogo in Admin, awesomeness, Basics, Saints.
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God  must want me to reflect on St. James the Apostle (the Greater), one of the “sons of thunder.”  He is the Apostle who is called the ‘Moor slayer’ in Spain, or used to be, anyway.  Ostensibly, St. James rode mystically into battle during one of the many conflicts between Moors and Catholics in Spain, and helped the Spaniards win a great victory. Today is his feast day.  I have this book that sort of guides one through the Gospels, reading a bit at a time.  I’ve read them before, but today’s reading was that bit from Mark about James and his brother John wanting to have the prestige of sitting at Jesus’ right and left in His Kingdom.  Coincidence?

I don’t think so.  I think God wants me to slay some Moors.  Just kidding.  I’ll have to reflect on what this means. 

UPDATE: So, I realize that the readings yesterday for the Mass were of course about St. James the Greater and were just the section of St. Mark I mentioned above.  So, people are probably like – big deal, how is that Providential?  Well, because, I wasn’t reading the Gospel readings for that day, I was reading a book totally unrelated that plows through sections of the Gospels and has a meditation on them, that was totally unrelated to the Liturgical calendar.  So……..anyhoo…….that’s how it was Providential.  To me.  Ahem.

The tonsure July 25, 2011

Posted by Tantumblogo in awesomeness, Basics, blogfoolery, General Catholic.
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It’s coming back!

h/t New Liturgical Movement

I was thinking about local priests, and how they might look with the tonsure.  It’s not an altogether complimentary style, is it?  I had a few giggles with that mental exercise!

Ezechiel 33 hard to square with ‘once saved always saved’ July 25, 2011

Posted by Tantumblogo in Basics, Dallas Diocese, Ecumenism, foolishness, General Catholic, sadness.
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As one of their own says, ‘once saved always saved’ is one of the biggest heresies ever.  An excerpt from Ezechiel chapter 33 (Douay Reims):

When I say to the wicked: O wicked man, thou shalt surely die: if thou dost not speak to warn the wicked man from his way: that wicked man shall die in his iniquity, but I will require his blood at thy hand. [9] But if thou tell the wicked man, that he may be converted from his ways, and he be not converted from his way: he shall die in his iniquity: but thou hast delivered thy soul. [10]Thou therefore, O son of man, say to the house of Israel: Thus you have spoken, saying: Our iniquities, and our sins are upon us, and we pine away in them: how then can we live?

[11] Say to them: As I live, saith the Lord God, I desire not the death of the wicked, but that the wicked turn from his way, and live. Turn ye, turn ye from your evil ways: and why will you die, O house of Israel? [12] Thou therefore, O son of man, say to the children of thy people: The justice of the just shall not deliver him, in what day soever he shall sin: and the wickedness of the wicked shall not hurt him, in what day soever he shall turn from his wickedness: and the just shall not be able to live in his justice, in what day soever he shall sin. [13] Yea, if I shall say to the just that he shall surely live, and he, trusting in his justice, commit iniquity: all his justices shall be forgotten, and in his iniquity, which he hath committed, in the same shall he die. [14] And if I shall say to the wicked: Thou shalt surely die: and he do penance for his sin, and do judgment and justice, [15]And if that wicked man restore the pledge, and render what he had robbed, and walk in the commandments of life, and do no unjust thing: he shall surely live, and shall not die.

[16] None of his sins, which he hath committed, shall be imputed to him: he hath done judgment and justice, he shall surely live

Doesn’t the above seem like  an explicit refutation of the error of ‘once saved always saved?’  Even though we are in the New Covenant of Jesus Christ, that does not make the Old Testament, written under the old covenant, inoperative.  And logically – how can one that ‘accepts Jesus as their personal lord and savior’ at a young age, and then goes on to lead a dissolute life, be said to have been saved?  Perhaps he will be, but that will be due to God’s mercy, and not due to the earlier acclimation. 

The Catholic concept, of Grace, sin, repentance, and forgiveness, makes sense from the perspective of how most lead their lives – we try, we fall, we repent, obtain forgiveness (absolution), and try again.  If all we have to do is make a statement ‘I accept Jesus as my “personal lord and savior”,’ then we can skip all that trying and suffering and growing in Grace – we’ve got a get into Heaven free card! 

I pray they are right.

Bishop Brown’s going to do it? July 25, 2011

Posted by Tantumblogo in Art and Architecture, asshatery, Basics, foolishness, General Catholic, sadness, scandals, sickness.
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To say that Bishop Tod Brown of Orange, CA, has engendered a a certain amount of controversy would be to put it mildly.  But now, as his time as Bishop careens to an end, he is poised to leave the Diocese of Orange with a monstrous legacy – a glass evangelical shell will be the new Cathedral of Orange:

The Diocese of Orange has offered $50 million to purchase Crystal Cathedral, the 3,000-seat Protestant church built by televangelist Robert Schuller.

The bid, said Bishop Tod Brown, “respects the legacy Rev. Schuller worked so hard to establish. Our offer also clearly accommodates future diocesan needs for a cathedral and modern administrative campus

There’s  more sycophancy for Schuller, whose profit taking for himself and his family managed to run the Crystal Cathedral into its present financial morass, at the link, if you can take it.  I couldn’t finish it.

Does this look like a Cathedral?

The glass everywhere, exposed steel trusses, the cold utilitarianism, give it a football stadium feel, to me. 

Sure, it can be remodeled, but I don’t think its fundamentally flawed nature can be fixed.  It’s a terrible protestant church, it will be a disastrous Catholic one. 

Bishop Brown may buy this, and may turn it into the Cathedral for Orange, but who wants to bet that Bishop Brown’s successor will soon be talking replacement?

Daring pro-life event planned for Dallas July 25, 2011

Posted by Tantumblogo in Abortion, awesomeness, Basics, Dallas Diocese, General Catholic, North Deanery, sadness, scandals, sickness.
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There has long been a debate in the pro-life movement over whether confrontation works.  Should we always be meek and mild, praying quietly outside abortion mills, or should there be a more confrontational stand taken?  In saying that, I’m not saying that anything crazy should be done, but should the reality of abortion be brought home with greater vigor?  To me, the answer has been yes.

There is an effort underway to bring this reality to the people of DallasFace the Truth Dallas will include pro-life people on very busy public streets displaying graphic pictures of abortion.   Similar campaigns have occurred in Illinois, Washington, and other states.  Face the Truth Dallas will occur on October 1 and 2.  Locations have not been set, yet, but there will be updates on the Facebook page and the event webpage as we get closer to the date.  I will post updates (but a reminder from the Pro-Life Texas folks to me wouldn’t hurt…..hint hint!).  You can indicate your plan to attend on the Facebook page

Why be so confrontational, why the graphic signs?  Because a very large number of people have weak support for abortion because they deny the reality of it in their minds.  Because abortion represents a gaping wound, a festering sore on the nation’s soul, and the infection from it can kill the soul of the entire nation.  And because abortion is murder.  But most of all, because it works – while angering to some and potentially painful to others, they also clearly demonstrate the monstrous evil that is abortion to a great swath of people who just haven’t thought about the issue much, but tend to think that abortion is a ‘victimless’ crime.  It is so very far from that. 

I look forward to supporting this event, and getting screamed at by passers-by.  A little dying to self could be in the offing!

The video below provides a brief overview:

Great wisdom from St. Catherine of Siena July 25, 2011

Posted by Tantumblogo in awesomeness, Basics, Dallas Diocese, General Catholic, Interior Life, Saints, scandals.
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So, I’ve been writing some about one of  my favorite Saints, and I found some more gold from St. Catherine of Siena:

I am convinced that God is the same for me as He was for the martyrs, that His power is no less, that He can and will provide me with all I need. But because I do not love Him I do not rely completely upon Him; the physical fear which I know I possess shows how lukewarm my love is, how the light of Faith is dimed by my presumption and my faithlessness towards my Creator. I acknowledge and do not deny that this root is not yet weeded out of my soul completely, and it is this which delays the work which God has entrusted to me and prevents me from reaching the great goal which God intended for me when He let me start this work….[The work being reform of the Church and defending Pope Urban VI against the antipope and many schismatics in the Church.  Much violence abounded in this Great Western Schism]

I pray that God may annihilate our old selves [speaking to Blessed Raymond of Capua, for Blessed Raymond had been sent by the Pope to try to convert the schismatic French king, but turned back on word that an ambush had been laid for him.  The Pope ordered Blessed Raymond to remain in Genoa, but Catherine thought Blessed Raymond had shown insufficient faith] and re-create them, so that we may receive the ability to love perfectly and be strong and faithful. It seems to me, from what I have understood……..that you have suffered from terrrible inner strife. The snares of the devil and your own sensitiveness have made you think your burdens were too heavy for you to bear, and that I had measured you with my own yardstick. And you thought that my love for you had diminished; but in this you are wrong, and you show that my love has grown, while yours has diminished, for I love you as I love myself. I had hoped so ardently that God’s goodness would add to you that which was lacking. But it was not to be so, for you decided to throw off the burden which chaffed you, and to fall into weakness and unfaithfulness. All this I see clearly, and I wish I had been the only one to see it. So you can see that my love for you has increased and noot diminished. But how explain that your ignorance of my love could cause you the smallest grain of suffering? How could you ever think that I desired anything but life for your soul? What has become of the faith you have always had and ought to have? What has become of your conviction that everything that happens is according ot God’s Providence, not only in great matters but in the smallest trivialities? [how, then, could you have chickened out?]

If you had been faithful you would not have been full of doubt and faint-heartedness towards God and me. But like an obedient son you would have done all that you could, and if you could not proceed on your two feet you would have continued your way on your hands and knees…….

Oh, we see in agony of soul how our sins against God rise and overpower us. I live in sorrow, and pray God in His mercy to take me from this dark life.

The above may seem harsh, for Blessed Raymond’s life may have been in danger, but to St. Catherine, doing the Will of God was ALL.  When we failed, it was our failure to do God’s Will and live up to His expectations for us.  And she knew that tremendous spiritual growth would occur if Blessed Raymond had gone to France, and that if he had been martyred he would wear the white robe in Heaven and be in the splendor of God’s Glory forever.  But in shirking his duty and turning back, she felt he had failed to be open to this calling from God, which showed that he still valued earthly things more than the things of God. 

Speaking of me, on  my best day, I’m not 1/100th the devoted servant of the Lord that Blessed Raymond was!  So many miles to go…….


Fresco of St. Catherine of Siena - done by a family member who knew her, showing her true likeness