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Dominicans at the March for Life January 28, 2013

Posted by Tantumblogo in Abortion, awesomeness, Basics, contraception, General Catholic, Glory, Grace, religious, sanctity, Virtue.
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Between the Corapi comments and the posts about bishops selling contraception, I need a break.  How about a vide of some nice young religious at the 2013 March for Life in DC?  I love religious, especially nuns, but it’s great to see them in public.  I pray we see many more, I think they give such great witness and are positively inspiring just by their presence. Their very lives say “I am really trying to give all to Christ.”  I pray all of them become great saints:

Bishops argue unborn aren’t people, sell contraception January 28, 2013

Posted by Tantumblogo in abdication of duty, Basics, episcopate, error, foolishness, General Catholic, sadness, scandals, sickness, Society.
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Two big stories broke last week.  One features a Colorado man suing Catholic Health Initiatives, a Catholic health care consortium owned and/or overseen by the bishops of Colorado, for what he feels is the wrongful death of his wife and twins.  While that is tragic, the main point of this story is that this Catholic Health Initiative’s lawywers have argued, in court, that fetuses have no right to life and that no wrongful death could then have occurred:

But when it came to mounting a defense in the Stodghill case, Catholic Health’s lawyers effectively turned the Church directives on their head. Catholic organizations have for decades fought to change federal and state laws that fail to protect “unborn persons,” and Catholic Health’s lawyers in this case had the chance to set precedent bolstering anti-abortion legal arguments. Instead, they are arguing state law protects doctors from liability concerning unborn fetuses on grounds that those fetuses are not persons with legal rights.

As Jason Langley, an attorney with Denver-based Kennedy Childs, argued in one of the briefs he filed for the defense, the court “should not overturn the long-standing rule in Colorado that the term ‘person,’ as is used in the Wrongful Death Act, encompasses only individuals born alive. Colorado state courts define ‘person’ under the Act to include only those born alive. Therefore Plaintiffs cannot maintain wrongful death claims based on two unborn fetuses.”

So, one dogmatic belief chunked under the bus for a few million dollars.  It should be noted, the unnecessary and useless Colorado bishop’s conference intends to review the Church-owned hospital chain’s policies and practices.  One doubts they would have done so without the publicity.

Belief two – the Diocese of Maine recently purchased  a strip mall across the street from the Cathedral (The. Cathedral.).  Included in that strip mall is a Rite Aid that not only sells dozens of types of contraception, but also the morning after pill:

A year ago this week, Bishop Richard Malone of the Roman Catholic Diocese of Maine issued a scathing news release under the headline “Obama Tramples Religious Freedom.”

Malone’s complaint: President Obama’s mandate that workplace health insurance plans include free contraceptive coverage for female employees was “a blatant and capricious affront to conscience rights and religious liberty.”

“The Church, as a matter of doctrine, opposes the use of contraception and particularly the morning-after pill since it often serves to induce abortion,” Malone declared at the time.

Fast forward to late last month, when the diocese announced its $2.75 million purchase of a small shopping plaza at 290 Congress St. in Portland. A plaza anchored by a Rite Aid store that sells, along with an array of other contraceptives, the morning-after pill.

You read that right: Twelve months after Malone denounced morning-after pills because they “violate our moral code of conduct,” the same pills are being sold on church-owned property directly across the street from the Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception.

….”It’s really a balance,” said David Guthro, spokesman for the diocese, when asked this week to reconcile Malone’s news release with his purchase-and-sale agreement.

Added Guthro, “The decision was made that this is in the best interest of the diocese at this time.”

……it made sense, Guthro explained, for the diocese to invest in commercial real estate for the first time in its 159-year history, because “the rental income has a better return than fixed-income investments.”

Fair enough. But to become the landlord to — and hence profit from — a tenant that sells the morning-after pill? How does that jibe with church doctrine that depicts the same pill as inherently evil?

“It was something that was discussed by the diocesan Finance Council and the College of Consultors,” said Guthro.

(The former is composed primarily of lay people with financial expertise; the latter is a panel of priests that advises Malone

In what is really an amazingly thorough and understanding article from the secular media, the column author then goes on to quote a local moral theologian. Stay with this, it’s really very good:

Guthro said both groups recognized the apparent contradiction between condemning the morning-after pill from the pulpit while indirectly profiting from its sale on church-owned property in the shadow of the cathedral.

So “they used an assessment from a moral theologian to discuss the matter,” Guthro said.

Enter the Rev. Joseph Daniels, a church-licensed theologian and a member of the Society of Christian Ethics.

“In moral theology, this involves the ‘principle of cooperation,’” Daniels said in an telephone interview from Corpus Christi Parish in Waterville, where he serves as pastor.


“There are various kinds of cooperation,” explained Daniels. “Cooperation can be distinguished between being proximate — being very closely involved with something — or remote — being more distant from involvement with a particular activity.”

At the same time, he said, cooperation can be distinguished by behavior: “Is it formal? Or is it material? Are we directly engaged in the activity formally? Or are we involved, but our action is not direct?”

The fact that the church collects rent from Rite Aid derived in part from the sale of contraceptives, Daniels said, is sufficiently “indirect” to pass moral muster. [That is a very surprising and weak conclusion.  I see moral obfuscation going on here, not moral clarity.  Contraception is one of the top moral evils in this nation, and certainly the most widespread. Supporting it’s sale, or even appearing to, even very indirectly, is a scandal of terrible scale].

That said, he conceded, “I would imagine that there would be Catholics who would reflect on this and find it somewhat troubling.”

To those confused communicants, Daniels said, he would point out that Rite Aid’s inventory extends far beyond contraceptives, that the Congress Street store serves as a much-needed retail “anchor” to the surrounding neighborhood, and that the diocese has a moral obligation to maintain “good stewardship of diocesan resources.”

All well and good — if not a tad slippery. [I completely agree. In fact, I’d say this even a slightly serious enough reason to involve the Church, even indirectly, in the sale of contraceptives and abortifacients]

In a 1995 article titled “The Principle of Cooperation,” the Rev. James Keenan (who tutored Daniels at the Weston School of Theology in Cambridge, Mass.) cautioned that “any act of material cooperation requires a proportionately grave reason.”

So what “grave reason” precipitated the diocese’s involvement, however indirect, in the sale of the morning-after pill? The need for a deeper revenue stream?

And as he navigates these shades of gray, what would Daniels advise if the diocese had its eye on an office building only to discover that its list of tenants included, say, Planned Parenthood?

“I think that would be a disqualifier for the purchase,” he quickly replied.

Even if the relationship — tenant and landlord — were essentially the same as the one with Rite Aid?

“The relationship would be a landlord-tenant relationship,” agreed Daniels. “But we certainly know what Planned Parenthood does.”

Just as Bishop Malone, by his own words, knows what the morning-after pill does. [the same thing Planned Parenthood does – kills unborn babies.  The author of this column reads like a concerned and scandalized Catholic]

I would say, prudentially, such a decision is disastrous. It seems hypocritical as all get out.  It is precisely true that one can only cooperate with a moral evil – even at a great distance, even very indirectly – for a proportionally grave reason. Is improving the diocese’s real estate portfolio a sufficiently grave reason?  I would say no, not even close.  I imagine many readers would concur.  And it further undermines my faith in the thought – heck the faint dream – that the men currently inhabiting the episcopate in this country would, not only not go to jail, but wouldn’t even experience moderate personal hassle or discomfort over the HHS mandate.  If the courts don’t throw it out, a face-saving deal will the struck, and the Church in this country will distribute contraception.  Absent a miracle of Grace, I would say you could just about count on it.

What is horrifying, is you can see that many souls have been scandalized by this kind of behavior right out of the Church. Go read the comments. The culture tells people all the Church wants is  your money.  Many souls seem predisposed to believe that. So any excuse to reinforce that thinking, they take it and run with it – and sometimes pull a weak soul or two from the Faith in the process.

h/t culturewarenotes

Bishop Finn – Distorter should not call itself Catholic January 28, 2013

Posted by Tantumblogo in Abortion, Basics, Dallas Diocese, episcopate, General Catholic, North Deanery, scandals, secularism, sexual depravity, Society, true leadership, unadulterated evil.
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It’s nice to see Bishop Finn of Kansas City, MO, has taken some time to denounce the National Catholic Distorter.  In a recent edition of the diocesan newspaper Catholic Key, Bishop Finn notes that he and his predecessors have, for 45 years, been trying to get the Distorter to drop the Catholic name, but as an entity outside the Church, they don’t really have the ability to get them to stop:

I am sorry to say, my attention has been drawn once again to the National Catholic Reporter, a newspaper with headquarters in this Diocese. I have received letters and other complaints about NCR from the beginning of my time here. In the last months I have been deluged with emails and other correspondence from Catholics concerned about the editorial stances of the Reporter: officially condemning Church teaching on the ordination of women, insistent undermining of Church teaching on artificial contraception and sexual morality in general, lionizing dissident theologies while rejecting established Magisterial teaching, and a litany of other issues.

My predecessor bishops have taken different approaches to the challenge. Bishop Charles Helmsing in October of 1968 issued a condemnation of the National Catholic Reporter and asked the publishers to remove the name “Catholic” from their title – to no avail. From my perspective, NCR’s positions against authentic Church teaching and leadership have not changed trajectory in the intervening decades.

So, why is the situation regarding the Distorter, and, say Real CatholicTV, different?  If you will recall, a year ago or so, the Archdiocese of Detroit and other entitites in the Church started going after RealCatholicTV, saying they could not use the Catholic name.  The ultimate reason for this was that Voris is too orthodox and said too many things that made the hierarchy uncomfortable. That is to say, he was succeeding. . Michael Voris and crew eventually decided to change their name from RealCatholicTV to ChurchMilitantTV, not because they thought they did not have the right to use it, or because they didn’t think they could win their canon law case, but because the issue just got to be too big a distraction and headache.

Now, flip to the Distorter.  Aside from rare denouncements from their local ordinaries and a very few other bishops denouncing them – often in a rather lighthearted manner – the Distorter is, in fact, in quite tight with both the USCCB and the vast majority of dioceses.  They claim they are approved – whatever that means – by the USCCB’s  Catholic Press Association.   The large majority of parishes I’ve been order the Distorter – usually, several copies per parish.  As do many dioceses.  I saw a rack full of them at the San Antonio chancery last fall.  Many dioceses and parishes advertize for job openings in the Distorter – isn’t it good to know that the person hired to teach your kids the Faith got their job through the Distorter?  The Distorter is, in sum, treated like a welcome insider.

Thus, there is a massive double standard.  The Distorter gets away with calling itself “Catholic,” trading on that name (in fact, the newspaper would fail in months if diocesan and parish subscriptions went away), and leading many souls down the primrose path to destruction, all with the tacit approval of the USCCB and the vast majority of bishops.  ChurchMilitantTV gets hounded relentlessly, the subject of expensive canon lawsuits.  So, when Archbishop Vigneron goes after Michael Voris, the whole machinery of the Church in the US spins up to attack RealCatholicTV, whereas when Bishop Finn denounces the Distorter, the whole machinery of the Church in the US spins up in their defense, making them, in essence, untouchable. Which is exactly why their response to Bishop Finn’s concerns was so haughty and dismissive. If they thought he could hurt them, they would not have replied such.

Now, in truth, there are many things Finn could do to make the Distorter’s operations more difficult. He could excommunicate all the apostate writers who live in his diocese. He could do the same for the staff.  I think the situation calls for such drastic steps, so I pray this is just the very beginning of Bishop Finn’s interaction with the Natholic Catholic Destroyer.

BTW, the Distorter was started in the early 60s by progressive, dissenting, even full-on apostate Catholics for the purpose of advancing the revolution in the Church. That has always been their specific intent.  The people they hired, the writers they quoted, the progressives/dissenters/apostates they supported, all were carefully calculated to do the most for the revolution possible. That relationship with the USCCB and the listing of positions in the Distorter – those are no accident. They show how the revolution entered the machinery created by “collegiality” at Vatican II (the conferences, the diocesan offices, etc) and took over almost all the domestic power structure of the Church (and in practically every other country, too).  The Distorter IS the official party organ, if you will, of the revolution in the Church.  There is no more institutional organization that you can imagine.  Think on that for a while…..

Bishop Finn could use many prayers. There is a group in Kansas City that is determined to destroy him.  He is a great friend of the Benedictines of the Priory of Ephesus, and I have heard traditional priests who know him speak very highly of him.  That is what the criminal case against him was all about.

If you’d like to take an action against the Distorter, tell your parish priest or bishop you won’t support them, financially, until they terminate all subscriptions and end all advertising in the Distorter.  I know many folks are uncomfortable going that far, but 50-odd families doing so in a given parish would probably be very effective.


Latin Mass tonight (01/28) at St. Mark January 28, 2013

Posted by Tantumblogo in awesomeness, Basics, Dallas Diocese, General Catholic, Latin Mass, North Deanery.
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After a one week absence, Novus Ordo Latin Mass returns tonight to St. Mark parish in Plano at 7pm.  We’ve had some big crowds lately, so, yay!

It’s always so inspiring to see people come out on a Monday night, especially when it’s dark and cold or the weather bad.  I pray I see many of you there!

Septuagesima began yesterday January 28, 2013

Posted by Tantumblogo in awesomeness, Basics, General Catholic, Glory, Grace, Latin Mass, Liturgical Year, sanctity, Tradition, Virtue.
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I had not so much as heard of Septagesima until a couple of years ago.  It is a liturgical season which, like Ember Days and Rogation Days, were completely removed from the new Church calendar with the Novus Ordo Missae.  I wrote about Septagesima last year, when it was still new to me.  Septuagint – the name of the season which begins with Septuagesima Sunday –  is a sort of prepartory time for the great pentitential season of Lent.  It might seem odd to have a preparatory time for penance, but I found it’s actually very helpful.  In previous years, I would frequently be caught out by Lent – not really ready to begin penance and not having a clear idea even of what penances I would perform.  With Septuagint, I started already focusing on the reason for Christ’s Incarnation, suffering, and death – our sinfulness which required the bloody sacrifice of our God and Creator in order to atone for our sins. That preparation helped me be more focused for Lent.

Even if you are not someone who assists at the Traditional Mass or is involved in a traditional parish, you can still start to prepare for Lent now.  As David Werling makes clear in his very helpful description of Septuagint, we need to prepare for Lent by imploring God for graces to help us get more focused, be more ready to offer up penance, and to practice virtue much better.  We must implore God’s Grace, because on our own, we can do nothing. We are entirely dependent on Grace for every good we do.  Quorting Mr. Werling:

Modern Catholics enter into the Lenten fast unprepared, and as a result enter it
with the impression that the fast is a human act, one that can mend the soul
from human ability alone. This Pelagian attitude is rampant in the Church today.
It diminishes the role of grace, the absolute Sovereignty of Christ, and
ultimately, it diminishes the Divinity of Our Blessed Lord. Only He can enrich
our Lenten fast. Only He, the Absolute Monarch, can release us from our exile
in hoc lacrymarum valle. Only He, Jesus
Christ, can save us.

Here is a nice excerpt from Dom Prosper Gueranger’s great opus on the Liturgical Year discussing the history of Septuagint.

More here on Septuagesima Sunday.



First Friday at Mater Dei parish this month January 28, 2013

Posted by Tantumblogo in awesomeness, Basics, Dallas Diocese, fun, General Catholic, Glory, Grace, Interior Life, Latin Mass, religious, sanctity, Tradition, Virtue.
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The Carmelites, due to ongoing and blessed events with regard to the many women who are advancing in their religious vocation at this convent, have again had to suspend the First Friday devotion for the month of February. Since this would be the third month in a row the devotion had been cancelled, Mater Dei parish has admirably stepped into the breech to provide this devotion so many find so uplifting. Thus, the First Friday Adoration will begin at 7pm, along with Confession, with TLM at 8pm and again at 3am. The Adoration will and at 7:45 am with Benediction, and will be followed by Mass at 8am.

In addition, that Saturday, February 2, Mater Dei will have a candlelit procession at 6pm for the Feast of the Purification. You can bring your candles to be blessed – bring a whole year’s worth! I had ordered 8 cartons, but I only received 3! That vendor better get them to me this week! I ordered 576 tiny votive candles and 288 that are larger, “10 hour” candles, plus some beeswax ones. Beeswax candles are expensive!

I pray I see many of you there! All are welcome to the Adoration, procession and Mass!