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It’s 1936 all over again in Spain August 19, 2011

Posted by Tantumblogo in asshatery, foolishness, General Catholic, horror, sadness, sickness, Society.
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The Spanish Civil War was precipitated by a left wing alliance of socialists, anarchists, and communists, who began to seize capital and severely persecute the Church, including killing priests and religious in cold blood.  There is nothing the secular left hates more than a strong and visible Catholic Faith.  Several years ago, the socialists again came to power in Spain, for the first time in decades.  Since that time, there have been increasing attacks against churches and the faithful.  This persecution has reached a new level during the public profession of faith at World Youth Day:

Socialists taunt praying CatholicsThe sign says: "Would Jesus live on taxes?," proclaiming falsely that WYD is costing Spain

Real men pick on nunsA number of the protestors favor 'alternative lifestyles'

And 75 years earlier:

Oh, here’s a timely video:

Here’s a video on the source of Communion in the hand.  Many since Vatican II have tried to claim that receiving Communion in the hand was a return to the practice of the early Church. Voris presents yet another refutation of that sadly false claim – Communion in the hand was deemed an excommunicable offense by the Council of Zaragossa in AD 380.  The practice was actually derived from a heresy in Spain.

More on pro-pedophile USCCB advisor August 19, 2011

Posted by Tantumblogo in Basics, Dallas Diocese, disaster, episcopate, foolishness, General Catholic, horror, sadness, scandals, sickness, Society.
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I’ve blogged twice this week about the hideous pedophile “normalization” and de-criminalization conference being held this week in Baltimore.  One of the lead organizers of this conference is Dr. Fred Berlin.  I was reading some more about this disturbed individual, a true disciple of the very sick and twisted Alfred Kinsey (the man who paid men to sexually molest their children for “science”), and the more I read, the more incredulous I become:

Berlin has similarly compared society’s reaction to pedophilia to that of homosexuality prior to the landmark 2003 Lawrence v. Texas decision that decriminalized sodomy.

B4U-ACT’s own website puts Berlin’s views front and center. “Just as has been the case historically with homosexuality,” he writes, “society is currently addressing the matter of pedophilia with a balance that is far more heavily weighted on the side of criminal justice solutions than on the side of mental health solutions.” [as I said, the pro-pedophile folks plan on following the same path with pedophilia they followed with homosexuality – first, remove it from consideration as a disorder, then remove ostracism, then tolerance, and finally, acceptance and normalization]

Berlin’s opposition to, and even noncompliance with, Maryland’s sex offender notification law drew scrutiny from former Maryland Attorney General J. Joseph Curran in the early 1990s.

In 1990 The Baltimore Sun reported that Berlin refused to report pedophiles under his care who were actively molesting children……..


Reisman remains unconvinced. “His [Berlin’s] empathy was with the pedophile and the pederast, not with the child victim,” she told TheDC. “He refused to report the criminal to law enforcement because he said they were in treatment.

“Taxpayers pay for treatment and they are molesting kids. They go out to Berlin, and he gets paid by us [the taxpayers] for therapy. 

Now, Berlin has apparently tried to distance himself from this conference, saying he is not in favor of de-criminalization, but favors an approach of both “criminal justice interventions and public health initiatives.”  Then why has he opposed sex offender notification laws, why has he not revealed that he is “treating” individuals actively ruining children’s lives (through molestation) to law enforcement, and why is he serving as the keynote speaker at this conference.  His words ring hollow.  I invite my readers to go to the B4U-ACT website, if you can take it, to determine for yourself the path this group is advocating.  It is nothing less than a planned program to de-criminalize child sex abuse and treat pedophilia as just one of a range of normal sexual tendencies.  This is what occurs in a society when it is absolutely decoupled from truth.

As far as the Church in concerned, I’m surprised there has been no statement from the USCCB or various dioceses formally repudiating their relationship with Berlin.  In fact, given the terrible counsel provided by this man, I’m surprised there aren’t several public repudiations of him by Church officials. It is a mystery to me why there are numerous interviews and credible references on the USCCB website citing this man, still present days after this news broke.  Legally, this would appear to be inadvisable, as lawyers pursuing abuse claims could make a connection between this “pedophile normalization” conference, Dr. Berlin, and the USCCB/various bishoprics.  But, perhaps such a press release will soon be forthcoming.

One final note, if you read Berlin’s statements, you will find a curiously strong empathy for the pedophile, and what seems to me to be a strange detachment from the plight of the abused child.  Sex abuse is the worst form of abuse, his views regarding it are completely alien, I would think, to the vast majority of rational adults.

The question remains why his counsel was so influential for so long in the Church.

I know it’s easy to complain….UPDATED! August 19, 2011

Posted by Tantumblogo in asshatery, Basics, Dallas Diocese, disaster, episcopate, foolishness, General Catholic, Immigration, sadness, scandals, Society.
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…..but I would sure like to see more “campaigns” from the USCCB oriented towards the spiritual needs of people, rather than campaigns ordered toward focusing the Church as a vehicle for social change:

The Justice for Immigrants campaign of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops is urging priests across the nation to “incorporate petitions, prayers and homilies” into Sunday Masses on September 25 in support of passage of the DREAM Act. The bill, first introduced in 2001, would provide a path to citizenship for some illegal immigrants. [It would also subsidize college education, and cement the extended family of the immigrants receiving this benefit in this country even further]

The Justice for Immigrants campaign has also issued an invitation to “plan a vigil or public event between Sept. 18 – Oct. 9 in support of our DREAM students and youth” and offers a “sample agenda and elements of a powerful event” to assist in planning

I believe this constant orientation towards social issues is part and parcel of a bureaucracy – a bureacracy doesn’t know how to measure and advocate for spiritual growth, but it can point towards social causes and government policy as easy metrics of “success” or “failure.”  This is a major problem in the Church in this country – it seems that much of the leadership is focused very heavily towards social causes and social change, and focuses comparitively public effort on the spiritual change that should, must always have primacy.  This is a sad effect of both bureacracies AND the influence of modernism on the Church – modernism reduces belief in the spiritual, mystical aspects of religion, and tries to focus religion as a vehicle of social change.  My problem with this is both practical and philosophical – I don’t believe it is just to continually advocate for more and more benefits and more and more open access to this country for illegal immigrants, with only the slightest lip service paid to the very serious problems our open borders present (the security threat our open borders pose is consistently ignored), while at the same time I believe that philosophically this constant social agitation both causes disaffectation among large swaths of the laity (reducing interest in taking direction from the leadership) and points to the profound lack of spiritual leadership I think many of us feel exists in the Church today.  Why don’t we see “campaigns” from the USCCB to promote belief in the Real Presence?  Why don’t we have “campaigns” that highlight the great need for penance and the Sacrament of Confession?  How about constant, well orchestrated campaigns to encourage Catholics to pray the Rosary daily?  I believe that any and all of the above would have a far more profound impact on our culture and would be more effective means of promoting social change than all these almost invariably left wing causes trumpeted by the USCCB.  I would certainly welcome a change.

UPDATE: Tom Crowe at CatholicVote offers more explanation why this effort is so problematic.

The lover of Jesus must climb Calvary and suffer with Him August 19, 2011

Posted by Tantumblogo in awesomeness, Basics, Dallas Diocese, General Catholic, Interior Life, Our Lady, sadness.
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From The Imitation of Mary by Abbe’ Alexander de Rouville, Book III Chapter 1:

Mary says:

Jesus climbed Calvary. Come with me, my child, for He invites us to go up with Him; you may not desert Him. Our love for Jesus woudl surely not be worthy of Him if we deserted Him in His sufferings, in that moment when everyone denied and insulted Him.

It is true enough that we cannot help Him, but at least we can share His suffering and unite our tears to His Blood.  We can give Him the comfort of seeing that we are ready to suffer, for love of Him, anything He permits.

The believer answers:

Noble virgin, can we show Jesus true love only by following Him to Calvary and suffering with Him? Can we not also show our love in tranquility and peace?

Mary answers:

In tranquility and peace, my child, it is easy to give proof of that love; but it must also be proved in pain and tears.  Jesus said “Anyone who does not take up his cross and follow Me cannot be My disciple” (Lk 14:27).

You must therefore regard any day as a happy one on which you have occasion to endure something for love of Him. Many Christians love the Divine Giver solely for His gifts: they are like earthly friends who never love except for a return.

They claim to love Jesus with all their hearts, yet they have not the courage to stay awake with Him for even an hour in the garden of His agony (Mt 26:40). 

They claim that they will follow Him even to death (Mt 25:35), but fear of suffering weakens love very quickly and they follow Him only at a distance (Lk 22:54).

My child, if you love Jesus, you  must love His cross, too, and if you love Him with all your heart, you must embrace with all your heart the crosses He sends you. Anyone who is not forced to carry Jesus’ cross, as Simon of Cyrene was, but gladly shares the bitter gall given to Him on Calvary, truly loves Jesus. For in fire gold is tested and worthy men in the crucible of humiliation (Sir 2:5)

Jesus lived amid tears; would you live amid delights?

The true Christian is a man like the patient Jesus, dying and dead on the cross. If Jesus seems to you to have deserved any of your love for having suffered on your behalf, why should you not love the suffering Jesus sends you so that he may also give you a share in His glory?

Did not the Messiah have to undergo all this so as to enter into His glory? (Lk 24:26). There was no other way for me, just as there was no other way for the Saints.

The believer answers:

Virgin Mother of God, you suffered so much pain, and you loved the pain because you loved Jesus. Intercede for me that I may overcome my weakness, my sensitivity, and the natural abhorrence I have for the cross. Let my heart, my mind, and all that is in me show that I love my God.

You were the holiest and the most afflicted of virgins. I want to share your sorrows, provided I can share your love. Teach me to love the cross of Jesus and to find my delight in it, so that at the moment of my death the crucified Jesus may be my strength and consolation.

Mary answers:

How can you trustingly embrace the crucifix at the moment of death, if you have in fact lived as an enemy of the cross of Christ (Phil 3:18)?  At the moment, far from lamenting that you have often been on the cross, you will wish you had always been there. My child, if you meet with insults, mistreatment, harsh persecution, misfortunes that seem insuperable, bear all with perservering patience.

If I see in you an image of Jesus, my love for you will be intensified, for you will then be a son less unworthy of your mother.

———————————-End Excerpt—————————–

A young priest at Mass recently discussed this phenomenon – people think that if they just sort of go along to get along, do what the culture is doing, just enjoy the comfort of modern life and don’t commit any huge sins but also live a rather unvirtuous life, they can expect salvation.  Even those who attend Mass weekly and go to Confession once or twice a year – they may have a confidence in their state of Grace and prospects for salvation that is misplaced.  If we have not conditioned ourselves to a deep love for God, doing all for God and striving to take on sufferings and mortifications in order to die to our self and “put on the new man” in Christ, when we are confronted with the perfection of beauty and grace and holiness and goodness that is God, we may seek to flee – we may not be prepared for that moment.  And there is only one place to escape to, as unthinkable as that may seem, many Saints attest to the fact that the souls fall into hell like so many snowflakes.  Thankfully, we have Purgatory, and while I do not relish the prospect of the painful transformation that must take place there, it is far better than the alternative.  But the ideal is to so grow in virtue, in self-denial and mortification, and in avoidance of sin, that when our individual judgment comes at our death, we will feel completely at home in God’s presence.  We – I, most especially! – must strive with all our migh to follow the example of the Saints and try to develop such a life with God that our death will seem perfectly natural and our souls will simply slip into Heaven as coming home from a long exile – it will be the most natural and desired thing we can imagine.

I am so very far from that.  I have so many miles to go – I have barely begun the journey, and often I turn back from the hard and rocky road and run back to the soft path of the world.  I pray I may respond to God’s Grace and remain on that narrow and difficult path, all the while carrying the great burden of the cross. I beg for the intercession of so many Saints to intercede for me, that I may be transformed into constantly accepting and acting on God’s Grace.  My Blessed Mother, please pray for me always!

Friday non-sequitir: the fastest man alive August 19, 2011

Posted by Tantumblogo in Admin, awesomeness, Basics, Society.
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Brig. Gen. Frank K. “Pete” Everest, Jr., USAF, Ret., is one of the lesser known greats of US aviation history.  A contemporary of (and severe competitor with) Chuck Yeager, for a period of about 4 years, years when America’s and the world’s eyes focused on aviation and aerospace to a degree we would find almost unbelievable today, Pete Everest was the “fastest man alive.”  A man had actually flown faster than Pete – that man was Capt. Milburn “Mel” Apt, but Capt. Apt did not survive the experience.  I’ll get to that later.

Pete Everest flew two combat tours in WWII, shot down 6 or 7 enemy aircraft, and was shot down himself late in the war and spent a few months in a surely hellish Japanese prison camp.  After the war, he was assigned to the Flight Test Branch at Wright-Patterson AFB, where he began to work on the X-1 program, an effort to try to fly faster than the speed of sound.  Once the Air Force took over the supersonic program from manufacturer Bell Aircraft, it looked like Pete would be a shoe-in as lead project pilot.  But the Flight Test Division’s commander, Maj. Gen. Al Boyd, had taken a liking to a hotshot young fighter pilot who had shot down five Germans in one day, and assigned then Capt. Chuck Yeager to be the lead pilot.  This really torqued Pete Everest off – he was a major, and, of course, he KNEW he was a way better pilot.  He figured Yeager would screw the pooch in some way, and possibly blow the program.  He didn’t.   

But Pete Everest didn’t just go away.  He flew the X-1 aircraft, too, establishing an altitude record of 73,000 ft and then moved on to other programs.  In 1953, he set a speed record for level flight over a 100 km course in the YF-100.  In 1954, he flew the X-1B, a souped up version of the X-1, to 2.3 Mach – about 1500 mph (Yeager had already flown the X-1A out to Mach 2.53 – 2nd place again). And then he was assigned to the X-2, another Bell Aircraft, which was designed to go beyond Mach 3 and to the very edge of space – way above 100,000 ft. 


Bell X-2

Unfortunately, the X-2 was a terrible aircraft.  The Curtiss-Wright two-stage rocket engine had huge problems, and, what was not known at the time, the X-2 design was a veritable aerodynamic lesson on how NOT to do Mach 3.  At high altitudes and very high airspeeds, maintaining directional stability is very difficult.  The X-2 was sorrowfully lacking in directional control.  Three men flew the X-2 – Capt. Mel Apt, Col. Pete Everest, and the stunningly handsome Capt. Iven Kincheloe.  But the X-2 was a


widowmaker – only Everest would survive the program.  While Kincheloe flew the aircraft out to 126,000 ft, Mel Apt and Pete Everest would trade out flights trying to gradually climb above Mach 3.  After Pete pushed the aircraft out to 2.9 Mach, Apt would make the flight trying to go through Mach 3.  He did.  But, after flying an almost flawless profile, Apt, a relatively inexperienced pilot, tried to bank the X-2, which, at his altitude and speed, caused the aircraft to go divergent –  it literally tumbled about all three axes.  He tried to bail out, but the excessive G-forces likely caused unconsciousness and he perished in the crash.  Pete Everest would remain the fastest man alive until May 12, 1960, the day Joe Walker flew the X-15 (the most successful research aircraft ever) out to Mach 3.2 and lived to tell about it.  For a while.  Joe Walker was later killed in a publicity photo shoot with the XB-70 bomber. 

Anyway, Pete Everest went on to a successful career in USAF, commanding a fighter squadron and group and then various USAF agencies until he retired in 1973.  He died 7 years ago, at the age of 83.  By all accounts, Pete Everest was supremely cocky but also pretty well liked – he was an extremely capable pilot, one Chuck Yeager called “probably my closest competitor in terms of natural raw flying ability.”   He made great contributions to the development of America’s aviation supremacy during the 1950s and 60s, a supremacy we have sadly squandered.  He was one of the unsung heroes of the golden age of American aviation.

Here’s a great video of Pete Everest in the X-2. Check out the confident smirk on his face at 0:15.  Supreme self-confidence.

Here’s a nice video about the X-15.  Note the minimal clearance under the X-15 ventral stabilizer at 0:40.  12,000 ft of runway for the B-52 to takeoff!  Think about this – the X-15 was designed in 1955.  This particular flight achieved an altitude of over 60 miles – qualifying the pilot for astronaut wings (flights above 50 miles so qualify).  There was once going to be a more advanced program to take over from where the X-15 left off, called the X-24C, but funding was diverted to that wonderful Space Shuttle.

Admin note – commenting problems August 19, 2011

Posted by Tantumblogo in Admin.
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It looks like the WordPress spam filter has gone into hyperactive mode and is dumping many comments into the spam folder.  I’m trying to get them all out.  Sorry if you’re comments aren’t showing up.  Sometimes, if a single person makes a  number of comments, WordPress assumes its spam.  Hopefully I’ll have all the comments out later today.