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I need a recommendation for a good Catholic dictionary May 5, 2014

Posted by Tantumblogo in Admin, catachesis, General Catholic, reading, Tradition.
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A friend and reader has made a request I am happy to share with you. I really don’t have a good answer, I guess I’ve never felt a need for a good Catholic dictionary, which might explain all the mistakes I make on this blog!

The reader is trying to find a good Catholic dictionary.

The reader thought the Catholic Dictionary by Fr. John Hardon, SJ, might make a good choice. But there are apparently several versions available, some of which seem to be abridged.  I don’t really have any clue as to the merits of the various versions, but some seem to have more entries than others.

The requester is a traditional Catholic who is asking for a friend.  I think she is looking for something that is traditional or at least solidly orthodox.

Any recommendations?

Deo Gratias!


Two best Good Shepherd Sunday sermons May 5, 2014

Posted by Tantumblogo in awesomeness, Basics, catachesis, Dallas Diocese, General Catholic, Glory, Grace, Latin Mass, manhood, priests, sexual depravity, Tradition, true leadership, Virtue.
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There is a priest I am privileged to know who grew up on a sheep ranch in Montana.  He seems to save his best sermons every year for Good Shepherd Sunday, which was yesterday in the Traditional Mass.  Every one of these sermons has a great hook at the beginning describing some aspect of ranching life.  And every sermon makes note of how sometimes, when life and death are at stake, you have to hurt someone or something in order to save them.  In the context of our present culture, where pleasure is constantly sought and many people believe there should never be a moment’s suffering in their entire lives (up to an including the moment of death, where many hope to pass instantly, suddenly, painlessly, without recourse to the Sacraments), little can be more countercultural than that.

And yet willingness to examine our consciences and undergo even painful reforms is a critical need for so many of us, who may have destructive habits and/or attachments we have accumulated over the years.  And it is a good priest’s job – a good shepherd’s job – to point common sins that people may have fallen into.  It is necessary to remind them, even painfully, that they must overcome these sins if they are to advance to the life of Grace and not be damned for all eternity due to some sin they refuse to let go of.  I know from experience how painful it can be to overcome long ingrained sins.  But it is also absolutely necessary.

I wish I could share yesterday’s sermon with you, but it is not available, yet.  For proof of how a strong sermon on the necessity of overcoming our most deeply held sins can offend people, I can relate to you that a woman was apparently screaming on her phone afterwards, telling someone how awful the priest was, how full of “fire and brimstone” and how offended she was and was never coming back to this particular parish.  That’s a tragedy in someone’s life.  Some people just can’t stand correction, or to hear the truth conveyed to them.

While awaiting yesterday’s sermon, I provide two below from previous years.  They are really worth your time:

Alfalfa bloat is no joke. It’s a whole lot worse with cattle than sheep.  The stench is horrible.  So is the stench of sin.  Some great Saints, like Saint Catherine of Siena, would actually wretch from the stench of sin they picked up from people around them.

The priest’s point regarding the internet is very well placed.  There has never before been such a vehicle to deliver unimaginable filth directly into people’s homes.  The extreme ease of availability and the total privacy (except for the NSA) of internet filth has led millions of souls, male and female, into terrible perversions and lusts that are utterly uncontrollable. And sins of lust are some of the hardest to overcome, especially if you develop these habits of sin at a very young age.  It takes a near miracle of Grace to overcome the perversion.  So, it’s good to hear quite a bit about that, because it’s dang rare to hear about it in the vast majority of parishes.

Video 2, the Top Seven Sins That Will Send You to Hell:

This one has been around before, but it’s worth listening to again.

The sermon yesterday was on a different subject matter entirely.  It was not so much about sins of the flesh, but sins of pride.

More on that later.

“Jesus had a wife” gnostic script found to be fraud May 5, 2014

Posted by Tantumblogo in asshatery, Basics, Bible, catachesis, error, foolishness, scandals, secularism, self-serving, Society, the enemy.
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Well, really. I knew it all along:

In September 2012, Harvard Divinity School professor Karen King announced the discovery of a Coptic (ancient Egyptian) gospel text on a papyrus fragment that contained the phrase “Jesus said to them, ‘My wife . . .’ ” The world took notice. The possibility that Jesus was married would prompt a radical reconsideration of the New Testament and biblical scholarship.

Yet now it appears almost certain that the Jesus-was-married story line was divorced from reality. On April 24, Christian Askeland—a Coptic specialist at Indiana Wesleyan University and my colleague at the Green Scholars Initiative—revealed that the “Gospel of Jesus’ Wife,” as the fragment is known, was a match for a papyrus fragment that is clearly a forgery.

So, it’s a double fake.  Not only was it something copied after a 1920s era heretical book, but even if it had proven original and dated from the 2nd century, it would still have been a heretical gnostic script and hence utterly meaningless to the faithful Catholic.

But I didn’t really bring this up to confirm what most already know.  This story has, after all, been out for some days.

What I wanted to communicate, not so much for you guys, but for any of the media elite who may happen to read this blog (and it does happen, from time to time), was this:  It will never work.  You’ll never peel me away from the Faith with trumped up scandals intended to demonstrate that Our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ was just a man.  There is nothing, no evidence you could ever contrive, that would peel me away from the Faith.  Even if you claimed to have 100% irrefutable “scientific” evidence that God does not exist, I would still laugh at you, carry on, and pray for your conversion.  Not that such evidence is even possible (quite the contrary, science speaks to God’s reality),  but I’m granting this to show there is nothing that you could do to shake my faith.

You can fool marginal Christians. You can satisfy worldly people and confirm them in their atheism/agnosticism, but you won’t get me and people like me.  I really wish you would just stop, because it is tiresome and annoying to have to refute obvious forgeries like this.  But, I know you won’t stop, you are fervent adherents to the competing sexular pagan religion, and unlike too many Christians, you will brook no dissent from your pagan faith.

I may fall away because I fall into sin.  I may allow myself to be weakened in faith due to scandal.  But so long as I trust in Jesus Christ and Him crucified, and all He has revealed through His Church, you will never have me, or those like me.

 So just let me be like a little grain of sand grinding away and irritating you always, knowing your anti-Catholic and anti-Christian efforts will never move me in the slightest.  And maybe, with Grace, that grain of sand will turn into the pearl of great price for you.

Martyrdom under liberalism may be silent and unseen May 5, 2014

Posted by Tantumblogo in abdication of duty, Basics, disaster, episcopate, error, foolishness, General Catholic, Holy suffering, horror, martyrdom, persecution, scandals, secularism, Society.
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Good reader skeinster sent me a link to a remarkable piece at the Federalist, reviewing the present state of the culture and the seeming inevitability that faithful Christians “are on the wrong side of history” regarding sodo-marriage and many other cultural trends, which is to say, we aren’t likely to win any of these fights.

I know nothing of the author, and the piece is long and difficult to excerpt.  But the author argues, very correctly in my estimation, that the cultural trends have turned decisively against the orthodox practice of the Faith.  He attacks efforts by many notional Christians to somehow reconcile the radically disparate ends and interests of the modern secular liberal state, and the Christian religion (that is, in essence, the basic project of the Church since Vatican II), as being fundamentally irreconcilable. And he sees that the leviathan liberal state, in alliance with various cultural elites/trendsetters, has so marginalized orthodox Christianity that it is essentially invisible to most people.

He makes so many profound points, I will try to encapsulate just a few.  For one, he notes that many people who claim the name Christian have been anesthetized by the culture, so awash in comfort and the mass indifferentism that liberalism demands that they are incapable of adhering to any countercultural Truth, even if doing so would not cost them in any particular way.  The fact is, most people are so inebriated with the propaganda of the culture through the mass media and a hundred thousand pinprick exertions of peer pressure, that they are no longer able to see where the culture has embraced manifest grave evils.  In essence, he is describing the entire liberal-Christian project, where liberal is always first and foremost.  He quotes towards the end a piece from Commonweal, wherein the author has the gall to assail faithful souls for fearing a persecution here, when there are real persecutions going on around the world.

But that is precisely the point. Those persecutions did not develop in a vacuum, and the same indifferentist trends and cultural cowardice that precipitated them, and developing a full head of steam here.  Anyone with eyes to see can see that the room for cultural maneuver most Christians assumed was there is rapidly evaporating.  You will be made to accept the dominant cultural shibboleths, or you will be made to pay a steadily steepening price.  Ask Brendan Eich or thousands of others.

The author quotes Pope Benedict XVI and a discourse he gave several years ago, on the growing cultural trend towards a sort of amorphous authoritarianism, where no one individual or even group can be blamed as the agency of totalitarianism, but the totalitarianism exists all the same.  The way to oppose that is to adhere to the Truth Christ has revealed through His Church resolutely and unflinchingly.

But then there is the rub.  Towards the end of the article, the author notes that liberals have so gamed the system that even martyrdom may not serve to shake masses out of their slumber. Liberal states – as witnessed by the mass but hidden murder of millions of faithful in the Soviet Union, Cuba, China, et. al., (that is to say, states that have taken the masonic anti-Catholic left-liberal paradigm to its inevitable conclusion) – excel at conducting martyrdoms in secret, where the value of witness is lost.  But this should not concern us, as God will not allow such exalted offerings to go unrewarded, in both the supernatural and natural sense.

Much of the condemnation of the liberal state and broader liberal social order tie in very well with the severe critique Christopher Ferrara made in his book Liberty: The God That Failed.  The liberal state and social order were deliberately designed, primarily by anti-Catholic masons, to destroy the social and political order of Christendom and to undermine the authority of the Catholic Church.

Efforts to argue for Christian Truth and morality based on “religious freedoms” granted by the liberal state are a complete and utter dead end. Not only do they grant the liberal state its conceit of being religiously tolerant (it is not, and never has been, ask all the sects that have been persecuted over the centuries), such efforts revolve around the whole panoply of left-liberal “rights” and privileges and are not based on fundamental Truth.  Efforts like the fight against the HHS Mandate by Amchurch, that concede so much by accepting so much of the liberal philosophy, are doomed to failure, or at best to be seen as self-serving special pleading by those outside the Church, because they are not based on appeals to fundamental truths, but to competing rights and privileges.  It is a breath-taking surrender of moral authority to argue on such grounds, but Amchurch has been doing so for well nigh 200 years.  There is a formal heresy for this root acceptance of liberalism – Americanism.

I’ve sort of wandered around and included some of my own thoughts branching off from the original article, but it is a piece you should definitely read.  I think so many of us can feel is either well on its way or already here, so it is past time to start thinking about how we will conduct ourselves should our beliefs begin to cost us more than mere annoyance and pious fear.  I highly recommend reading the entire, thought-provoking piece.  I hope I’ve done some justice in distilling and describing it, it’s something that should be read by all faithful souls.


After the adulation: Vicki Gene Robinson getting a “divorce” – UPDATED May 5, 2014

Posted by Tantumblogo in Abortion, asshatery, Basics, contraception, disaster, Ecumenism, error, General Catholic, horror, self-serving, sexual depravity, the enemy.
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Vicki Gene Robinson, former episcopal pretend bishop of New Hampshire, the man who drove the final nail in the coffin of the episcopal church, is getting “divorced.”  His fake marriage lasted less than 6 years, and from the article below, it sounds like in practice the relationship lasted even less than that.  Maybe 4 years or so.  Which is about average for the data I’ve seen on such desecrations of marriage.  After the adulation is gone, after the media loses interest in you, being pretend married isn’t as much fun as many of these attention-craving souls hoped it would be.

 An announcement from [ahem]  Bishop Robinson to House of Bishops, which he calls his “HOB family”, and jointly signed by “+Gene Robinson and Mark Andrew” confirms that a same-sex divorce is on the horizon for The Episcopal Church poster boy for same-sex marriage, noted gay rights activist and vocal spokesman for the LGBTQ crowd.

“It is time to share with you, our HOB family, that my partner and husband of 25+ years, Mark, and I have decided to be divorced. As you can imagine, this is a difficult time for us — not a decision entered into lightly or without much counseling,” the retired bishop writes. “I’m sure that you will understand the private nature of this change in our lives and our commitment to keeping those details appropriately private. [What a crock. This man has waved his sexuality around, and his relationship with his “beloved,” like a rainbow flag.  His entire public persona, and the media attention he so desperately craves (see the rest of the linked post), has been centered around putting his private life way, way out in public.  Sodomites as a matter of course define themselves by their sexual perversion, so suddenly begging privacy is a laugh]  Our life and ministry among you continues to be something that both of us count as an honor and blessing. We ask for your prayers, that the love and care for each other that has characterized our relationship for a quarter century will continue in the difficult days ahead.”

Again, Bishop Robinson will make headlines with this new revelation. [Which was the point all along?  Milking this relationship for every last ounce of PR?]

Or maybe, they didn’t give a whit for their pretend marriage in the first place, but was always about moving the sexular pagan ball forward, further destroying the building blocks of society in pursuit of their “anything goes*” goal.

Vicki Gene is, in a sense, the man who destroyed the episcopal church.  He had a great deal of help, and the sect was going to die, anyways, because it and its Anglican big-brother were founded in error by demonically sinful individuals (Henry VIII and Elizabeth I).  But, as I said, the schism he caused, and the dominant influence he had (along with Jefferts Schori) on the rump of the episcopal sect that remained, sent that group spiraling into final collapse.  But the Anglicans shall not be far behind, they are implementing all the same disastrous policies that obliterated any remaining shred of a claim the episcopal church USA had to being demonstrably Christian.  They are a left wing community group for people who like a bit of generic (and utterly unthreatening) God talk thrown into their political indoctrination.

The Anglican Communion will have openly sodomite “bishops,” and female bishops, and approve of sodomite pretend marriage, and all the rest, within the next few years.  And it won’t be long after that before Mohammad is proclaimed from the pulpit of Oxford.

*Anything sexually goes.  And may well be required.  But everything else, the state and the leftist elites will dictate to you from cradle to grave, including how and under what conditions you can worship your God, Christofascists.

UPDATE: If you want more details on why the episcopal church has collapsed, read this.  The basic reason: leftism has trumped Christianity.  And we have thousands of people in leadership positions in the Catholic Church who want to take Her down the same demonic path.

Incredible witness to the shock of 1960s liturgical revolution May 5, 2014

Posted by Tantumblogo in Basics, catachesis, Christendom, disaster, error, General Catholic, Holy suffering, horror, Latin Mass, Liturgy, scandals, secularism, self-serving, Society, the return.
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Captain Richard “Beak” Stratton, USN, Ret., was a man very much out of time when he was able to return to the Sacraments in March of 1973.  He had been shot down over North Vietnam in 1967 – not by the enemy, but by his own malfunctioning ordinance! – and had not been able to assist at Mass since then.  A daily Mass attendee, CaptRichardStrattonUSNand a former seminarian of 6 years (meaning he was nearly finished), he loved the Mass and accepted all the Church held to be true.  When he was, in a sense, lost to the world in 1967, he had noticed a few minor changes entering into the Mass (something, he says, most of the chaplains he knew assiduously strove to minimize, which is a commentary in its own right), but nothing of any great import or which undermined the efficacy of the Sacrament.

I will let Captain Stratton speak for himself, now, with regard to the shock he experienced when he returned to the world in 1973 (I add emphasis and comments):

In 1962 Pope John XXIII convened Vatican II, convocation of the leadership of the Catholic Church, to address issues of importance to the Church. In that year I was a warrior attached to Attack Squadron Ninety Four, Air Group Nine, USS Ranger (VA-94; CAG 9; CVA-61) and had limited interest as to what an Italian Pope was doing for the good of his people. I was a warrior, a Naval Aviator, a husband, a father and a son. I had my own fish to fry.

strattonAs the years slipped by I notice that there were subtle changes to the Roman Ritual of my religion as I met my religious obligations. English was creeping into the liturgy of the Mass – at the beginning – but not corrupting the core.

By the time that I deployed for my war – the Vietnam War – on the USS Ticonderoga, Carrier Air Wing Nineteen, Attack Squadron One Ninety Two (CVA-14; CAW 19; VA-192) there were not too many noticeable changes. My best friend, Michael Estocin (MOH) and I attended Mass every day we were not on the flight schedule on the forecastle of the Ticonderoga…….

.The North Vietnamese communists were a brutal, inhumane, power hungry group of misanthropes. Americans captured by them in Southeast Asia were tortured, beaten, starved, isolated, denied medical care and humiliated beyond belief except when it served the interests of the communist propaganda machine. [That is, they were perfect leftists, carrying out the diabolical, anti-Catholic masonic thinking of Locke, Voltaire, and Rousseau to it’s logical conclusion]  It was not a racial thing. They meted out the same treatment to their own people who dared to dissent as well as the Republic of Vietnam patriots who dared mrtfFjjVbgZgPQKW4Vk8gkgoppose them. They inflicted and continue to inflict the same punishment on Chinese-Vietnamese, native populations and those of mixed race. 

……..[Captain Stratton then goes on to describe the two times he was allowed to assist at Mass during his captivity, both of which times were propaganda moves by the North Vietnamese.  I will fast-forward to the second and last time, Christmas, 1967:]

Christmas 1967 was the next opportunity. Sometime in December, well after dark, I was told to suit up in my “Mess Dress” striped pajama prison garb. Nothing good ever happened after dark.

At bayonet point I was marched off into a weapons carrier sized vehicle. I was very nervous. The last time a night time trip like this happened, Doug Hegdahl and I were similarly mounted up, driven to a soccer stadium, exposed to a howling, out of control crowd, assaulted in the vehicle and driven off to the Plantation Prison.

s122.h2This time I disembarked, as I found out later, at the Hanoi Catholic Cathedral.

I was marched into a side door at the rear. They placed me half way down the nave on the Gospel side isolated from anyone else. The place looked like it could hold about 800 to 1,000 congregants. There were maybe 100 people in the church. There were perhaps 10 other POWs all in their Mess Dress garb scattered about. The cameras were there.

This was obviously a Roman Catholic house of worship. [One could never expect to find such an automatic identification in this day and age except by accident.]  [Precisely, attempting to discern the differences between most Catholic parishes today and those of erroneous sects is an exercise in futility] Jesus, Mary and Joseph were in their appointed places. The tabernacle was centrally located with the burning red candle clearly visible indicating the presence of the Blessed Sacrament. There was a crucifix. It was where it belonged, centrally located above and behind the altar. Various and sundry Saints (Peter, Paul, Teresa, Francis Xavier, etc.) were all visible and identifiable. The sanctuary exuded the tradition and magisterium of over 400 years. I was in a spiritual refuge. “Yea though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil.”

An interrogator barked at me: “Go visit the barn!” I was initially non-pulsed, then I realized he meant the crèche at the altar rail [remember that?]. [By the Grace of God, I do not have to remember. I am blessed to have regular access to a parish with altar rail, creche at Christmas, and all the rest]  I had no desire to contribute to the success of their propaganda effort. However, since I was in a losing situation, I should try to unfortunateget some benefit out of it. I saw one of our guys approaching the altar rail so I took off to join him. The VC were trying to keep us separated; but they could not over react in front of the cameras. The other guy was Jim Mulligan.

We knelt there side by side and swapped information as to where we thought we were located, who was our SRO (Senior Ranking Officer), who were in our prisons and when we thought the war would be over. This is where I found out that a small group of super resistors were under the shadow of the walls of the Ministry of Defense opposite our jail, the Plantation Prison main gate (17 Ly Nam Dai). Jim reaffirmed the resistance posture advanced by these leaders.

The Mass started and progressed according to rubric of the Roman Ritual (Pre-Vatican II). After the Priest read the gospel of the day and gave a brief homily in Vietnamese, one of our more malicious interrogators, The Rabbit, took the pulpit, and gave his English “Communist Christmas Sermon”. The essence of the sermon was that 6a00d8341c66c653ef0192abef4999970d-320wibaby Jesus, a good communist of a working class family, being born into poverty, was persecuted by the capitalists. He and his family were forced to flee Bethlehem for their lives in their Jeep into Egypt to avoid the American Imperialists and the Yankee Air Pirates. It indeed was a most inspiring sermon; it made one weep with laughter.

The rest of the Mass went as it had according to the Church of my youth, my seminary days (six years) and until Vatican II. It was invigorating, reinforcing, inspiring, reassuring, encouraging and inspirational. I was not required to sing, shake hands, swap germs, jiggle, dance, listen to guitar based protest songs, watch pagan dances on the altar, listen to the priest play the flute, raise my arms in an “alleluia”, stomp my feet, clap my hands, or listen to the latest bloviation of the Bishops’ regarding their personal version of current fads in political correctness or all inclusiveness[That’s one of the better one paragraph condemnations of the post-conciliar liturgical revolution I’ve come across]

……Fast forward to March 1973. Among the reception team of Operation Homecoming at Clark Air Force Base was a selection of a Chaplain of your choice. I don’t remember the name of the guy I was talking to except that imageshe was a Jesuit. He was playing the role of the “good ole boy”, using his first name and wearing sports clothes. I made a general confession, received Communion and was left with a great deal of confusion in respect to the lack of specifics provided in response to my expressed interest in the state of the Catholic Church as of that date. [And the progressives to this date will never honestly discuss the state of the Church.  They either give false pretensions regarding the “new springtime,” or, if you destroy their pretensions by quoting facts, they will simply say nothing/end the conversation. They have no defense. The revolution they have unleashed has never been about the good of the Church or of souls (especially the latter), it’s always been about confirming their own ideological biases and showing that they, and not the orthodox, are in charge now.]

It took only six months after my return to figure out that the Catholic Church of my youth had 8539871_600x338gone the way of the world and was no more.[Note: it did not go the way of the dodo, or, it did not die, but it went the way of the world.  That is one stinging rebuke]  The Episcopal High Church and Lutheran liturgies were more traditional than the succession of the prevailing Catholic entertainment fads and circuses in the round being passed off as “The Holy Sacrifice of the Mass”. My Church had either left me in my absence or had been high jacked. [The latter, certainly, but with a lot of willing help from opportunists who should have fought tooth and nail to defend the Faith and Liturgy as it was handed down to them.  Most of those opportunists have “Bishop” in front of their names]

I had in fact, at bayonet point, attended my last Catholic Mass of the “Old Dispensation” in St. Joseph’s Roman Catholic Cathedral, Hanoi, Democratic Republic of Vietnam, December 1967.

How about those sour apples! I guess this marks me as a traditionalist.

—————End Quote————-

I know this is a long quote but there was just so much of value to share. I don’t have a great deal to add, other than that I pray Captain Stratton knows about Summorum Pontificum, the resurgence of the TLM, and the fact that there are several TLMs near where he lives in the Jacksonville area.  If any POW Network folks happen by, I would love to get Captain Stratton’s contact, so I could at least try to assure he is aware that he can once again enjoy the Mass of All Ages.  I pray Captain Stratton kept the Faith during the dark decades of the 70s, 80s, and 90s.

It must have been traumatic, to leave the Church seemingly whole and comprehensible, and then returning, Rip Van Winkle-like just a few years later, and finding it something completely, radically different. But then, the entire culture had radically changed. That must have made the suffering these men endured even more difficult.  I wonder what they thought of the first shabby haired officer they saw (for the military never allowed such shabby standards as it did in the 70s)?  Much insult to injury, I am certain.