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Today is a very special day for me……. April 30, 2012

Posted by Tantumblogo in awesomeness, Basics, episcopate, General Catholic, Glory, Holy suffering, Interior Life, Latin Mass, priests, religious, Saints, Virtue.
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…..it’s her feast day.  Yes……..hers.  St. Catherine of Siena.  I love her.

The painting above comes from a fresco painted in a church in Siena, by a man who knew St. Catherine, Doctor of the Church, while she still lived.  St. Catherine was a tiny wisp of a woman, who from her youngest days had a tremendous cooperation with Grace, and whose life constantly exhibited the greatest sanctity.  There are many biographies of St. Catherine, but I highly recommend the one by the Swedish author Sigrid Undset.  It details her life of tremendous piety and joyfully experienced, even willed, suffering. 

But, as much as I adore St. Catherine, and I am ashamed at how I have not posted about her much at all this past  year, she’s really not the point of this post. Well, she is, but she isn’t.  The point of this post is prayer. 

If we are particularly blessed, we may know a priest, or even several, we tremendously admire and respect.  We may even know a bishop who possesses tremendous sanctity.  We may admire their prayerfulness, their dedication, their constant glorification of the Truth Christ has revealed through His Church, and many other facets.  But we must remember something absolutely critical: for all that priest’s sanctity, for all this good works or all his willingness to relate the hard truths, the truths most others don’t want to touch, he is but the tip of the spear.  The same applies to any holy person you know.   This is because, except in very rare cases, possibly like St. Catherine, these holy people are but the tip of the spear, the fruit of someone else’s prayers.

There is no question that, during St. Catherine’s time, Siena experienced a great revival in the Faith.  Prior to her public ministry, Siena was a troubled, worldly, materialist town.  And while it remained that way despite St. Catherine’s efforts, many, many souls turned away from the world and its illusions and embraced the true Faith of Jesus Christ.  They died to themselves, and to the world, and lived in an ethereal, spiritual counter-world, which existed both in and out of time, corresponding with saints and angels as much with men and worldly affairs.

If you know a really good priest, it is most likely he is good because somewhere, in some cloistered monastery, there is a little girl in a giant habit praying for him, many hours, every day.  Or there may be several such.  Or, it could be a monk.  Or, even, a particularly holy lay person, or a large group of relatively “normal” lay people praying for their priests.

The point is, to pray.  St. Catherine prayed.  She prayed that Siena would turn away from the violence and materialism of early renaiisance Tuscany.  She also prayed, and suffered immensely, for something else – she prayed that the Popes would free their terrible exile in Avignon and return to their rightful home in Rome.  She even went to Avignon to confront the Pope and his massive French entourage, so worldly, so corrupt.  There was so much gossip about Catherine in Rome – many said her ecstacies were faked, that she was just a religious nut, that no one could be so holy.  A particularly vicious courtesan even jabbed a large hat pin in St. Catherine’s bare foot when she was transfixed in ecstacy after Mass, to see if she would respond. Of course, she didn’t.  That woman later became one of St. Catherine’s third order Dominican followers.

The point is, we have to pray.  We have to pray without ceasing (1 Thess 5:17).  Even when we can’t formally pray, because we have to do some work, we can make that work a prayer by offering it to God.  In all but the most demanding work, it may be possible to keep a thought of God, a form of prayer, in the back of our mind, while we work.  If we offer constant prayer like this for some priest, some bishop, or some need in the Church or the world, it can have tremendous benefit. 

This also points out how much the radical shift in religious life, especially among female religious, over the past 50 years, has so disfigured the Church and so altered, or even interrupted, the flow of Grace into the Church. When the nuns shucked their habits, got masters degrees, went out into the world, and became focused so heavily on material affairs, it was a blow of shocking proportions.  That’s not to say we don’t need religious performing more earthly tasks, but even those must be centered around a life of prayer and total devotion to God, not bizaare neo-pagan earth mother wicca cults. 

And I don’t think it any accident, that as traditional religious life has made something of a small comeback, so has the liturgy improved, and vocations are up a bit, and many other indicators are starting to turnaround in fits and starts.  If we continue to pray, and if we have more religious that do so, it will power the restoration of the Church.

Speaking of St. Catherine, Rorate Caeli has some of the great Doctor’s thoughts on the Blessed Sacrament.

Latin Mass tonight at St. Mark! April 30, 2012

Posted by Tantumblogo in Dallas Diocese, General Catholic, Latin Mass, North Deanery.
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The usual time, usual place. 7pm!

Shroud waving for LCWR April 30, 2012

Posted by Tantumblogo in asshatery, Basics, Dallas Diocese, disaster, error, foolishness, General Catholic, horror, religious, sadness, scandals, sickness.
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The Dallas Morning News has run an op-ed about the Vatican appointment of an apostolic delegate to oversee the dismal, disastrous Leadership Conference of Women Religious (LCWR).  This op-ed is of a form so common in the past week that it is apparent to me that the LCWR have once again resorted to their usual defense against Church discipline: “Why would the Vatican pick on us poor, sweet, defenseless little nuns?”

But, first of all, these women will tell you themselves, they’re not nuns, they’re sisters. They are being disingenuous and hypocritical to use the image of a sweet, prayerful, cloistered nun in their public effort to diffuse the disciplinary enforcement long overdue.  So, before I begin on the execrable op-ed, just remember:


Does not equal this:

Or, to put it in words, a raging feminist active lesbian in a pantsuit does not equal a faithful nun in a habit praying her entire life in a cloister.  These things are radically different, and there is no problem whatsoever with the latter in the eyes of the Vatican or any faithful Catholic. 

To the op-ed, a few brief excerpts for flavor:

Two months ago, I went to the Maryknoll [that’s a bad sign right from the start, the Maryknoll are down there with the Jesuits in terms of embrace of leftist modernism] motherhouse, a massive stone building in Ossining, N.Y., to interview 93-year-old Sister Madeline Dorsey for a book I am writing. This was a sister who had chosen to stay with the poor in El Salvador after the 1980 murder of Archbishop Oscar Romero. A few months later, she found the bodies of her murdered sisters buried in a shallow grave. She was willing to risk her life, she said, “to help the poor rise up and know themselves as children of God.”

So when I heard that the Vatican had ordered a crackdown on the largest umbrella group of U.S. sisters, accusing them of spending too much time “promoting issues of social justice,” I was stunned. Perhaps I shouldn’t have been, given Rome’s historic failure to support its best and brightest………..

OK, first, the snide remark “best and brightest” is ludicrous.  I guess to this leftist apparatchik author (who also happens to be a profesor at Catholic Loyola-Chicago!  $$ka-ching!), only those on the left side of the spectrum working “social justice” issues can be the best and the brightest.  Not so those dull-witted, backwards, repressed, “un-liberated” women in cloisters.

Next, the Vatican is not accusing them of “too much time promoting social justice.”  That’s not at all what the Vatican said, it said they do social justice of a sort, but that it has become disordered and, much more so, that they apostasize from what the Church believes on scores of issues.  Many are not faithful to their vows of poverty, chastity, and obedience – especially the last two.  And their perversions of doctrine and morality, including personal morality, have left many formerly glorious religious orders moribund, near death.  That is why the Vatican has had to step in, because these sisters (especially LCWR leadership, but also many rank and file) stopped being Catholic decades ago, and their actions have gravely weakened religious life in this country. I also add, that the “social justice” practiced by the sisters quoted in this piece is a terribly distorted, “liberation theology” rejected as erroneous and damaging to the Faith by Blessed Pope John Paul II, noted reactionary.  More..

In 1985, she and 15 other church workers were charged with “conspiracy to smuggle illegal aliens.” [Were they smuggling illegal aliens? Well, she was convicted of four felony counts.  After her trial, the woman in question, Darlene Nicgorski, also “realized” she was lesbian] The day after Nicgorski learned of her conviction on five felony counts — which could have resulted in a 15-year prison sentence — she spent the night at my apartment in New York.

She did not end up serving time. But she never forgot that while Protestant leaders and then-Archbishop Rembert Weakland of Milwaukee had been strong supporters, she had heard no response from Rome. Later, she would leave her order. [That is probably for the best]

Good grief, “Rome” runs a universal Church of over a billion souls.  So, no, they don’t typically run to the scene of each self-inflicted bit of drama a priest or religious finds themselves in.  And given what I know of Weakland, and certain female religious, that “drama” is often an attempt to garner PR for their cause.  Note again, however, how the author is trying to make “Rome” the bogeyman and portray the religious sisters as poor innocents desperately trying to aid the huddled masses, yearning to breathe free.  Give me a break. 

I also wrote about Sister Mary Aileen Dame, a doctor who had spent decades treating the poor in rural villages and city hospitals. I met her at the airport in Managua, Nicaragua, in the late 1980s.

In the evenings we would drink beer out of plastic bags and talk about the Sandinistas. [My stars, did you see that Daniel Ortega?!?  He’s dreeeeaaaaamyyy!  Oh, by the way, the Sandinistas murdered tens of thousands, like the good revolutionaries they are] But she cared less about politics than ministering to women who had rarely seen a doctor, and she lamented what she saw as the Vatican’s neglect of the poor. She, too, would later leave religious life.

Yes, Rome cares nothing for the poor, save for operating more charitable relief services than any other organization on the planet, and doing more for the poor than most all other religions combined. Good point!  I wonder if the good sister described above ever reflected on whether it was really Rome’s care for the poor that was distressing, or Rome’s lack of attention to her that really bothered.

She spent the next decades finding God again in the people with whom she worked on promoting human rights for Guatemalans. She fasted for days and nights in front of the White House to get the U.S. government to release information about her case. I remember longtime peace activist, now-retired Auxiliary Bishop Thomas Gumbleton of Detroit, sitting silently with her on the grass [Yes, Gumbleton always found time to go attention-seeking outside the White House] One evening National Security Adviser Anthony Lakestopped by to check on her.

Sisters came by the dozens, some spending days by her side as she became thinner and thinner. But no one from the Vatican sent as much as a note.

Once again, the drama.  And the sense that,  in spite of their rejection of the Faith, their left-wing liberation theology, and their vitriol towards dad the Vatican, they desperately crave recognition and approval from their fathers that same Vatican. 

Here’s a but that sums up the views of the author of this black is white, up is down, Laverne is Shirley op-ed, Julia Lieblich:

Author Julia Lieblich helps us to see how the spirituality of these women — two of whom are no longer nuns — has led them to challenge traditional Catholic dogma and authoritarianism. Their progressivism may be the salt that gives savor to the new activism of laity and the new forms of feminine spirituality afoot in our times.

Sheesh has that 40 year old rhetoric grown tired.  These women have “progressed” themselves right out of the Church.  But their cohorts who have remained within have done immense damage.  It is doubly sad, because religious life,


properly practiced, is absolutely essential to the proper function of the Church.  But I get the sense from these women that they were far more concerned with the world than with God. 

I pray the Vatican sticks to its guns and disassembles LCWR, and lets nature take its course with its many corrupted orders.

NB: no, not all women in every order that belongs to LCWR is a raging feminist, but many are.  So there.

Fr. Joseph Kramer on the rise of tradition April 30, 2012

Posted by Tantumblogo in awesomeness, Basics, Dallas Diocese, disaster, episcopate, error, foolishness, General Catholic, Glory, Latin Mass, Tradition.
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I pray it’s rising.  Many times I think, yes, it certainly is, but other times I am more skeptical.  It’s not that “tradition” is some wonderful thing of the past, a yearned for nostalgia – by “tradition,” I mean for the Church to be the Church it has been and was always meant to be!  Almost unbelievably (for I think most would not believe it if they did not live through it and in it), the Church as it was is not the Church we have today.  We cannot go back to the former Church, but we can build again the Church based on those twin pillars of Sacred Scripture and Tradition.   Via David Werling and Rorate Caeli:

I’m f loored that video came from CNS.  “The revolution inside the Catholic Church was on the part of the clergy, not so much the laity.” 

Along similar lines, you could also read this amazing letter from a priest, written in 1967 to Pope Paul VI.  A small excerpt – the entire letter is long, and amazing in its prophecy:

Today’s condition of the Catholic Church is beyond the point of doctrinal heresy, factual schism, and even apostasy. It is in a state of chaos and utter collapse resulting from the systematic destruction of first our liturgical and other traditions, and now our very beliefs and morals ….

In open violation of all past and present liturgical directives, the Roman Catholic Liturgy, once the envy of all other religions, has for all practical purposes been destroyed. And it gives us very little personal satisfaction to know that all those responsible for this destruction were in advance irrevocably anathematized by the still valid solemn decree of the Council of Trent: “If anyone says that the Mass ought to be celebrated in the vernacular only, let him be cursed.”(Canons of the Most Holy Sacrifice of the Mass, n. 9.)

Coercive changes have subrogated our traditional practices with the “litniks”of our Church Establishment daily intensifying their attempts to subjugate the “people of God” to becoming “Protestant” Catholics.

Our churches are no longer Catholic in appearance, atmosphere, or aim. Tables looking like butcher blocks or ironing boards have replaced our altars in perfect harmony with the 16th century Protestant Reformation directives bent on destroying the belief in the dogma of Transubstantiation and the sacrificial nature of the Mass and replacing it with a symbolical trans-signification-communal meal.

Our Holy Mass has disappeared an in its place our people are offered a holy mess of vernacularized vacuum stripped of the surety, serenity, uniformity, and dignity of our traditional Latin liturgy.

Hymns associated with the anti-Catholic rebellions of Luther, Calvin and Wesley have unceremoniously uprooted our cherished Catholic hymns to our God and the Blessed Mother, while our uniquely Catholic Gregorian and polyphonic music has been discarded for sounds and instruments sometimes borrowed from the decadent milieu of young human animals.

Communion rails are ripped out and Holy Communion is refused to the “people of God” unless they stand (not kneel) to receive Him at the mention of Whose name all knees should bend, if one is still to trust the text of the “unrevised” New Testament we were given at one time in our Catholic institutions.

The Most Blessed Sacrament, to be reserved in “the central place of honor” according to the legitimate liturgical directives, is relegated to an obscure shoe box-type niche, playing much less than second fiddle to the throne-type chair of the presiding clerical Buddha set up in dead center of a religious flavored discotheque-barn, from which the traditional statues and Stations of the Cross have been shipped to the nearest auction gallery or antiques shop.

Unfortunately, this letter appears to have made absolutely no impact on Paul VI.  As it was, the new Mass was promulgated in 1969, then quickly revised for release in 1970 (the revision was made because there were even more outrageous deviations from Catholic belief and liturgical practice in the 1969 Mass).



They finally arrived! April 30, 2012

Posted by Tantumblogo in Admin, awesomeness, Basics, General Catholic, Interior Life, Latin Mass, Liturgy, Tradition, Virtue.
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And they are great!  I finally got the Latin-English Breviary according to the 1962 Missal (well, sort of, they actually date from 1961, I believe) – so, they accord with the Traditional Latin  Mass.  I waited 2+  years, but others have waited far longer than that.  They came Friday afternoon, and I’ve been using them since Friday Vespers.

So, what do I think?  It’s awesome in many respects.  The quality of the cover, binding, and paper is quite high – hopefully, they will prove durable over decades of daily use.  The print is fine and clear, and there is copious beautiful artwork.  I do have a significant complaint, however.  It might be unfair, but since I quit praying the Novus Ordo Liturgy of the Hours and switched to a partial Divine Office that is in Dom Prosper Gueranger’s mammoth, fantastic The Liturgical Year, I have become accustomed to a, if you will, liturgical English that is fine and elegant.  I have to say that the English translations in the new Breviary, while definitely an accurate translation of the Latin and full of the great traditional meaning of the Latin texts and prayers, do not have that same elegance and beauty, and the translations of some of the hymns have been rendered too literally, destroying their rhyme and meter.

I see that Shawn Tribe at New Liturgical Movement has many of the same commentsI want to be clear – it is not the meaning, the intent, of the prayers that is the problem, but the flow and meter of the text.  In terms of meaning, the prayers are just what they should be – full of reference to sacrifice, to mortification, to our total dependence on the Grace of God, to our need to please God through works, all the subtleties of the Faith, and none of the watered down, literally protestant (because they were written by protestants!) prayers found in the Novus Ordo, or post-Vatican II, Breviary/Divine Office/Liturgy of the Hours.  But they lack some of the elegance and sublimity I had become accustomed to in reading the more ancient translations in Gueranger’s magnum opus.

Having said that, I am thrilled to have this Breviary.  I look forward to dramatically improving my knowledge and practice of Latin by going through these prayers and using both languages. The books, so far, appear to be worth every single penny I spent on them, as well as the wait.  Most of all, I am pleased to finally have a Breviary that does not insult both my intelligence and Catholic sensus fidei through annoying, cloying, materialist, protestantized prayers.

Between reading the Haydock Study Bible, Gueranger’s The Liturgical Year, and now this new Breviary, just praying and studying the Faith could be a full time job!  Who wants to pay me to read and blog about it?!?!?


Just a typical Saturday night at our house April 30, 2012

Posted by Tantumblogo in Admin, awesomeness, Dallas Diocese, fun, General Catholic, silliness.
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A priest, with a bird on his shoulder, as a candlestick leans to falling:

With six kids going absolutely bonkers over having this priest over, it was not a restful night for Fr. L.

The bird was removed shortly after this photo was taken.

Catholics and the death penalty April 27, 2012

Posted by Tantumblogo in Abortion, awesomeness, Basics, Dallas Diocese, episcopate, error, General Catholic, Interior Life, Papa.
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The death penalty is one of those areas of Catholic belief that causes a great deal of confusion.  Catholics that tilt toward the left try to imply that support for the death penalty is no different than support for abortion.  This notion is totally false.  I spoke at length with a very knowledgeable priest last night on this subject, and I’ll transmit what he taught along with some of my own interpretation:

First, the Church has always acknowledged that the state possesses the power of the sword – the power to take life. States can do so under certain conditions – in time of war, in time of riot or civil unrest, and in criminal matters.  In the past, the Church had courts which would at times turn those found guilty of heresy or other crimes against the Church over to the civil authority to mete out punishment.  For much of the history of the Church, the punishment for repeated, unapologetic heresy was death.  So, it is wrong to claim, as some do, that the Church opposes the death penalty.  The Church does not, and cannot, oppose the death penalty in principle – it is a right the state possesses, and that is that. It is interesting to note that capital punishment – the state’s right to take life –  is central to Salvation history. In His discourse with Pilate, Jesus never argued against any injustice in the death penalty – He did state, however, that such power as Pilate had over Him was given by above.

Having said that, recent Pontiffs have wondered whether using the death penalty makes sense in today’s environment.  Advances in technology make it possible in many cases to keep a criminal so sequestered away that he can do no further damage to society or other persons.  Such confinement could be viewed as almost more severe than death, since the person would be so totally cut off from others, but that is another matter.  Both Blessed Pope John Paul II and Pope Benedict XVI have stated that, as a matter of prudential judgment, they do not feel the death penalty is called for, today.  Do note, that does not mean they disbelieve the right of the state to use capital punishment, they simply do not believe it is required, today.

So, when left-leaning ‘catholycs’ claim that the death penalty is as grave an evil as abortion, they are wrong.  The Church has not, does not, and will not disavow the right of states to use lethal force in certain circumstances.  Since our Popes have stated that they see no need for capital punishment at present, Catholics should strive to adhere to that belief as a matter of obedience and respect for the Office, but such belief is not mandatory in the sense that it is sinful to hold a different belief.  Regarding abortion, however, the Church has always proclaimed that it is always and everywhere evil no matter any circumstance, and that support for abortion constitutes such a grave sin as to cast one outside the confines of the believing Church.

So, capital punishment is a right states hold, but, prudentially, Catholics should be very wary of it, at most, if not actively opposed to its use.  If you are a supporter of the death penalty, such support does not at all rise to the level of sin, but it would be very advisable to review the Pope’s recent statements on the issue and to strive to hold the same belief expressed therein.

The priest also pointed out that, with the direction the government in this country is headed, even at the state level (not so much in Texas, but in many other locales, and definitely at the federal level), one may be advised to examine the unlawful nature of many governmental acts and wonder if such a state can be entrusted to take the lives of citizens in a dispassionate, humane, and just manner.   With so many people being freed from prison after ostensibly exculpatory DNA evidence has been found (although, I have grave doubts whether this DNA is anywhere near as reliable as it is made out to be, but still), the worry that innocent people may be condemned to death is a serious one.  With the overarching trends towards left wing totalitarianism in this country, I, for one, do not trust this government with the lives of its citizens.

I used to support the death penalty pretty strongly.  I no longer do, due to the reasons outlined above (and I had reached this conclusion before the talk last night).  But, in terms of civic duty, if there is a choice between a pro-abort but anti-capital punishment candidate, and an anti-abortion but pro-capital punishment candidate, there really is not choice – you must go with the latter, for abortion is always and everywhere the gravest of sins, while capital punishment is a practice the Church believes should not be used at present, but is not intrinsically evil.

I pray you find this discourse helpful. I certainly did.

Michael Voris on the scandal of “gay friendly” churches April 27, 2012

Posted by Tantumblogo in Basics, Dallas Diocese, disaster, error, General Catholic, Holy suffering, horror, North Deanery, sadness, scandals, sickness, Society, unadulterated evil.
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St. Elizabeth Ann Seton is a local parish that has a gay ministry which, in the past, used very problematic documents as reference or for formation – documents which trumpeted the gay lifestyle and rejected Church Doctrine.

The problem is tragically world-wide.  Church leaders with either sympathies for gay advocacy groups, or who simply don’t want to stand up for the Faith, have allowed heretical gay ministries and even full-blown “gay parishes” to exist for years.

It is very revealing that active homosexuals have this great need to proclaim great historical figures as gays – a sort of psychological verification by proxy.  The claims that have been made regarding David and his friend Jonathan are bad enough, but stating – IN A ROSARY!!! – that Christ had a homosexual relationship with Lazarus (of all people – I wonder what bit of Scripture they hang this perversion on) is the most outrageous blasphemy I’ve ever heard.

That is beyond disordered.  It’s the open embrace of evil, the turning of the greatest Good into one of the greatest sins, a complete rejection of the Incarnation of God on earth (for God cannot have sexual desire, as He is unchanging, beyond desire and want, which imply imperfection and incompleteness) and a replacement of Divinity with one of the 4 sins that cry out to Heaven for vengeance.   It is a perversion of all that Christ is and all that he strove to complete on earth.

As I said, it’s very revealing.  It’s the sinner turning his ostensible “savior” into the bearer of his sin, in order to try to somehow normalize that sin, or make it ok. It would be like me proclaiming Jesus an addict/alcoholic because He turned the water into wine at Cana, or drank wine with His Apostles at the Last Supper.  But I don’t want to be an addict.  I don’t want to try to bring Jesus Christ down to my sinful level – I want to strive to imitate His glorious perfection.

I want to look on Christ as my model for overcoming my numerous sins and imperfections and improving myself.  I openly accept the Scripture and Tradition that reject my sins- from the concupiscence of the flesh we all struggle against (but which many gays try to make their own, unique problem) to the intemperance and selfishness that are always striving to put me ahead of my Lord and my service to Him in His Church.

We are told – “it’s different, they were ‘born that way’, why would God make them gay and then ‘tell’ them they can’t act out on their desires?”  My Lord, we’re all that way! We all have very deep seated faults and predelictions that drive us towards sin.  It’s all a part of our fallen nature!  It is our cross, and we all have one or many to bear.  Some have heavier crosses to bear than others.  I would argue that the difference between being an addict (for which there is at least as much, if not more evidence, of a genetic component, than homosexual desires) and gay is slight, at best.  Both are profound tendencies towards sin, and both tend to take over the afflicted person’s personality. But I don’t see anyone arguing yet, that drunks and drug addicts like me should be accepted as they are by Church or society.  I pray such never happens, because I know the pain and misery of sin, and I have no desire to fall back into the grasp of the devil.

In the end, as Voris says, it’s all the same old sin – “I will not serve.”

This is not about hate. It’s not about seeking to punish those with homosexual desires in some way.  It’s about the duty we all have to take up our cross, no matter how large, no matter what the world says, and follow Jesus.  It’s about having the humility and obedience to look on the Gospel and Scripture as the literal Word of God, and do our utmost to follow it.  It’s about true charity, not wishing to see souls cast themselves into irrevocable darkness but live in the Light of Christ.  That is why I rail on this issue so much, because I know the endless suffering of sin and I desire that others not fall into it.  In fact, it is my solemn duty as a Christian to witness for Truth and against error and evil to the greatest extent I can.

Oh Blessed Mother, pray for all of us lost in sin.  Soften our hearts.  Beg mercy for us.  Intercede with your Son to flood our souls with Grace to overcome our attachment to sin.  Blessed Mother, your Son always listens to you – have mercy on us and always intercede for us that we may cooperate with Grace and never sin again!

Orthodox Catholicism is winning? April 26, 2012

Posted by Tantumblogo in awesomeness, Basics, Dallas Diocese, episcopate, General Catholic, Glory, Latin Mass, priests, religious, Tradition, Virtue.
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The actual title of the article is “Traditional Catholicism is Winning,” but I think that’s a bridge too far, at this point.  And even as regards orthodox Catholicism, I’d say things are starting to turn around, but we have miles and miles to go:

In his Holy Thursday homily at St. Peter’s Basilica on April 5, Pope Benedict XVI denounced calls from some Catholics for optional celibacy among priests and for women’s ordination. The pope said that “true renewal” comes only through the “joy of faith” and “radicalism of obedience.”

And renewal is coming. After the 2002 scandal about sexual abuse by clergy, progressive Catholics were predicting the end of the celibate male priesthood in books like “Full Pews and Empty Altars” and “The Death of Priesthood.” Yet today the number of priestly ordinations is steadily increasing…..[slowly…..]

……The situation in the U.S. is still tenuous. The number of American Catholics has grown to 77.7 million, up from 50 million in 1980. But the priest-to-parishioner ratio has changed for the worse. In 1965, there was one priest for every 780 American parishioners. By 1985, there was one priest for every 900 Catholics, and by 2011 there was one for every 2,000. In dioceses where there are few ordinations, such as New York’s Rochester and Albany, people know this shortage well.  [Hmm……both dioceses are run by disastrously heterodox bishops endorsing much dissent and heresy….could there be a connection to a dirth of faith and lack of vocations?]

Still, the future is encouraging. There were 467 new priestly ordinations in the U.S. last year, according to a survey by the Center for Applied Research in the Apostolate at Georgetown University, up from 442 a decade ago.  [That’s a pretty slow rate of growth, but I think there are many men in seminary now who could make that number really jump…….if they stay through to get ordained.  That has been one of the big problems, orthodox young men get run out of seminary for being orthodox]

While some of the highest numbers of new priests are in the Catholic-majority cities of Newark, N.J., and Philadelphia, ordinations in Washington, D.C. (18 last year) and Chicago (26) also are booming. The biggest gains are not only in traditional Catholic strongholds. In Lincoln, Neb., Catholics constitute only 16% of the population yet have some of the strongest numbers of ordinations. In 2011, there were 10 men ordained as priests in Lincoln. [Hmmm…Lincoln has Bishop Bruskewitz. Bruskewitz is perhaps the most orthodox bishop in the country.  Maybe there is a connection……..duh!]


What explains the trend? Nearly 20 years ago, Archbishop Elden Curtiss, then leader of the Omaha, Neb., diocese, suggested that when dioceses are unambiguous and allow a minimum of dissent about the male, celibate priesthood, more candidates answer the call to the priesthood. [Archbishop Curtiss was correct.  Orthodoxy leads to all kinds of benefits, from vocations to salvation] Our preliminary research on the correlates of priestly ordinations reveals that the dioceses with the largest numbers of new priests are led by courageous bishops with faithful and inspirational vocations offices.

Leadership and adherence to church doctrine certainly distinguish the bishop of Lincoln, the Most Rev. Fabian Bruskewitz. He made national news in 1996 when he stated that members of dissident Catholic groups including Call to Action and Catholics for Choice had automatically excommunicated themselves from the church. [And the Diocese of Lincoln has consistently led the country in percentage of priestly vocations in relation to the number of Catholics. As such, even small parishes in the Diocese have their own priest, which helps insure even more vocations later]

Cardinal Francis George, the longtime leader of the Chicago archdiocese, once gave a homily that startled the faithful by pronouncing liberal Catholicism “an exhausted project . . . parasitical on a substance that no longer exists.” Declaring that Catholics are at a “turning point” in the life of the church in this country, the cardinal concluded that the bishops must stand as a “reality check for the apostolic faith.”  [Wow……I never knew George spoke thus.  Say more, Cardinal George!]

It’s not a secret.  The “formula” to a vibrant, growing, faith-filled Church is not heresy, dissent, and modernist anti-clericalism and false, illusory “empowerment” of the laity.  It’s orthodoxy, prayer, mortification, and adhering to the Gospel of Jesus Christ and all the great Tradition of the Faith.  That leads to vocations, the saving of souls, true renewal in the Church, and a vibrant faith.

The 50 odd year liberal-run embrace of the world is, I pray, coming to an end.  It cannot come soon enough. 

Thank goodness! Transgendereds now protected class! April 26, 2012

Posted by Tantumblogo in Basics, disaster, error, foolishness, General Catholic, horror, sadness, sickness, Society.
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I have been losing sleep over this issue for years. But finally, thanks to the generous benificence of the Obama administration EEOC, transgendered people are now a protected class in the US of A:

The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) has ruled that discrimination against transgendered persons violates Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964.

“Intentional discrimination against a transgender individual because that person is transgender is, by definition, [discrimination] ‘based on … sex,’” the EEOC ruled.

Thus, the US government has now determined that was once seen as a profound psychological dysfunction is now a wonderful human characteristic, so innate it must be protected!  I have enormous problems with all protected class legislation, or hate crimes legislation, because it’s balkanizing the culture, pitting us against one another, and making a mockery of “equal protection before the law.”

E. Christian Brugger of the Culture of Life Foundation looks at some aspects of what he calls “pangenderism:”

………In 2004 in an article entitled Surgical Sex, McHugh wrote: “… I concluded that to provide a surgical alteration to the body of these unfortunate people was to collaborate with a mental disorder rather than to treat it.”

Catholic teaching and sex reassignment surgery

Although neither the Catechism of the Catholic Church (CCC) nor — to my knowledge —  specific documents by the Magisterium on moral issues address directly the question of trangenderism or sex reassignment surgery [The Church is having a hard time keeping up with the lunacy and moral decay of our times], a fairly clear assessment of both can be gathered from what is taught in scripture and tradition.  Catholic teaching going back to the Middle Ages definitively affirms that human personhood is constituted by an inseparable unity of body and soul (cf. Council of Vienne, Constitution Fidei Catholicae; Lateran V, Bull Apostolici Regiminis; Vatican II, Gaudium et Spes, no. 14; Veritatis Splendor, no. 48). St. Paul admonishes the church in Corinth to shun immorality in the body because our bodies — not just our souls — are temples of the Holy Spirit (cf. 1 Corinthians 6:18-19). And Genesis 1 teaches that human persons proceed from the creative will of God as male and female.   

We may say, then, that humans are essentially their bodies, although not reducible to their bodies.  In other words, their personal identity is constituted in part by their bodies. Since the human person is a substantial unity of body and soul, if the body is a particular sex, so too, must we conclude, is the whole person.  Therefore, the proposition that a person can be a “woman trapped in a man’s body,” or any other similarly dualistic proposition, must be firmly rejected. (I prescind here from a discussion of “intersex” individuals.) We are warranted in concluding from this, indeed required to conclude, that the painful psychological disharmony that some people feel in relation to their settled biological sex is due to psychological disorder[And, indeed, it was always viewed as such, for centuries, until modernist, amoral influences began to grow in medicine and psychology, which have tried to “regularize” aberrant behavior]

Attempting to satisfy psychological states, therefore, is not a valid therapeutic reason to amputate healthy genitals and to undertake to reconstruct new ones.  The choice to do so should be assessed as a form of unethical bodily mutilation. The CCC teaches: “Except when performed for strictly therapeutic medical reason, directly intended amputations, mutilations, and sterilizations performed on innocent persons are against the moral law” (no. 2297). 

Finally, to hold that such surgery is unethical to undergo (as well as to perform and support) is not to make a judgment about the subjective culpability of those persons who request and undergo it.  I expect that in a community as confused as our own, many of them “knoweth not what they do” and so, although doing serious harm to themselves, do so with diminished culpability. [those who encourage them to mutilate themselves may have more culpability – substantially more]

It is not bias, or hatred, or my own repressed homosexual tendencies (so strong they’ve led me to father six children), that causes me to weep for the many people acting out on same sex attraction or other sexual problems. Great evidence shows that, no matter how much validation gays or transgenders get from the culture, they are still fundamentally dissatisfied on a deep emotional level.  Thus, the very high rates of alcohol and drug abuse, extremely risky sexual behavior, depression, suicide, etc., among homosexuals – and the rates are 10x higher for transgendered people.  I pray for them.  I pray they understand that what they feel is not normal or natural, no matter what psychologist or doctor or the culture tells them. 

God only instituted one legitimate, natural, moral way of sexual expression: between a man and a woman, in the confines of marriage, ordered towards the procreation of children.  If any of those conditions are not met, any sexual behavior is immoral and offensive to God. 

All the rest is just playing the games of the world, the flesh, and the devil.