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St. Alphonsus’ Spiritual Maxims for Christians part II July 31, 2014

Posted by Tantumblogo in awesomeness, Basics, catachesis, General Catholic, Glory, Grace, Holy suffering, Interior Life, Saints, sanctity, Spiritual Warfare, Tradition, Virtue.
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I’m finishing what I started yesterday, St. Alphonsus de Liguori’s Spiritual Maxims for Christians:

He who thinks of hell, which he has deserved, finds every trouble easy to bear.

He who loves poverty possesses all things. In the things of this world we must choose the worst; in the things of God we must choose the best.

An obedient soul is the delight of God.

True charity consists in doing good to those who do us evil, and in thus gaining them over.

It is a great Grace of God to be called to his Holy Love.

God does not leave a single good desire unrewarded.

All attachment, even to good things (except to God), is bad.

Let us be grateful, and first of all to God. Let us therefore resolve to deny him nothing, making choice of those things which are most pleasing to him.

The most beautiful prayer is when in sickness we unite ourselves to the Will of God.

A holy life and sensual pleasures cannot agree together.

He who trusts in himself is lost; he who trusts in God can do all things.

And what greater delight can a soul have than to know that it is pleasing God.

God is ready to give Himself to those who leave all for His love.

The only way by which we can become Saints is the way of suffering.

It is by aridity and temptations that God tries those who love Him.

No one can be lost who loves God and trusts in Him.

Let us beg of God to give us a tender devotion to His Divine Mother.

He who looks on Jesus crucified suffers everything in peace.

He who loves God most in this world is the happiest. All that is not done for God, turns to pain.

No kind of disquietude, although for a good end, comes from God. [We should consider this with regard to things that upset us, even when we may learn a good deal in the process. And, yes, that regards reporting on affairs in the Church. That is the sad reason some souls have decided in the past year to stop blogging, or to avoid assiduously any coverage of this papacy.  That is a tragic comment on how bad things are]

It is enough that we do not stand still; we shall arrive in the end.

He who desires only God is rich and happy; he is in want of nothing, and may laugh at all the world.

Nothing can satisfy one whom God does not satisfy.

God, God, and nothing more.

We must overcome all to gain all.

———–End Quote———-

Oh, Lord, if your Church in this country only had one bishop like Saint Alphonsus!  Please send us one such great, saintly bishop!  So many souls would be edified!  So many would have their faith strengthened!  Have mercy on us, we are weak and pitiful and need help to be strong!  Send us helpers!  We will love you as best we can even amidst all the present difficulties, but great Saints would help us so much!

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REMINDERS: Special Adoration at Mater Dei Aug 1, and All Night Vigil at Carmel! July 31, 2014

Posted by Tantumblogo in awesomeness, Basics, Dallas Diocese, Eucharist, General Catholic, Glory, Grace, Interior Life, Latin Mass, religious, sanctity, Spiritual Warfare, Tradition, Virtue.
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Mater Dei Latin Mass parish in Irving will have Adoration of the Blessed Sacrament from 7am until 6:30pm this Friday, Aug 1.  This is for the special intention of praying and offering penance for the persecuted Christians in the Mideast.

In addition, there is the regular All Night Adoration at the Dallas Carmel starting at 5 and going till 7am on Saturday.  So, you could go hardcore adoring for 24 hours, and possibly change the world!  How awesome is that?!

Of course, every time we pray and fast, we change the world, at least a tiny bit, into a better place.  More on the Mater Dei Adoration below:

Eucharistic Adoration  Friday, August 1 – 7:00a – 6:30p Mater Dei Latin Mass Parish 2030 East State Highway 356, Irving, TX 75060 Masses at 6:30a and 12:10p | No Adoration during Mass The Priestly Fraternity of St. Peter asks all of its apostolates around the world to dedicate Friday, August 1 to a day of prayer and penance for the Christians who are suffering terrible persecution in Iraq, Syria and elsewhere in the Middle East. Please sign up as soon as possible, as we will only be able to offer Adoration at times when people are signed up. Please check the parish website on Thursday, July 31st, for confirmed Adoration times

Adoration is a great work of charity to Our Eucharistic Lord!  But tied in with this ongoing persecution in the Middle East, it is also a great spiritual work of mercy if we offer our prayers and penance for those suffering this fireball nightmare genocide!

I pray many readers (myself included – with my big mouth) are able to assist at one or the other of the Adorations.  Other area parishes like St. Mark also have 24 hour Adoration on Friday, or for shorter periods, so get out at least to a parish near you!

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Of course, we can always go visit Jesus in the Tabernacle. We should not wait for specific Eucharistic Adoration to do that!

But this Friday is a special event, for a special purpose.  I pray there is just a huge storm of prayers to Heaven for these suffering brethren.

New persecution – IRS strikes deal with atheist group to monitor sermon content? July 31, 2014

Posted by Tantumblogo in Basics, catachesis, Dallas Diocese, episcopate, error, foolishness, General Catholic, paganism, persecution, scandals, secularism, self-serving, Society, Spiritual Warfare.
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This is one of those matters that is not entirely clear yet, but given the massive scandals at the IRS and their seeming gleeful willingness to persecute just about any group or person to the right of Vladimir Ulyanov, I would not say this is nothing to worry about because it hasn’t taken shape, yet.  The fact that an atheist group is suing the IRS to monitor the content of church sermons for “violations” of their tax-exempt status should give one pause:

The next time your pastor delivers a pro-life sermon or urges the congregation to stand up for pro-life values in the political or public arena, he could be taken to task by the IRS.

Alliance Defending Freedom asked the Internal Revenue Service Tuesday to release all documents related to its recent decision to settle a lawsuit with an atheist group that claims the IRS has adopted new protocols and procedures for the investigation of churches. [You can hear hard drives crashing all over IRS headquarters in DC]

ADF submitted the Freedom of Information Act request after learning of the IRS’s agreement with Freedom From Religion Foundation in a press releasethe group issued on July 17 concerning its lawsuit Freedom From Religion Foundation v. Koskinen, which accused the agency of failing to investigate churches the way the atheist group would like. [This “foundation” and its leader, Mikey Wienstein, are virulent anti-Christians.  You could say he is much, much less worried about other religions than he is about the terrible “violations” of the false doctrine of separation of Church and state by Christians than he is by any other religion.  Once again, the sexular paganist hatred (Wienstein is a secular Jew – or is he?) of Christianity manifests itself]

……..According to the Freedom From Religion Foundation press release, “The IRS has now resolved the signature authority issue necessary to initiate church examinations. The IRS also has adopted procedures for reviewing, evaluating and determining whether to initiate church investigations.” [If this diabolical foundation is pleased, you can be sure that is very, very bad news for the Church]

The release mentions the ADF annual “Pulpit Freedom Sunday” event as one that promotes activity by churches that violates the Johnson Amendment, a federal law that activist groups often cite in an attempt to silence churches by threatening their tax-exempt status. The Johnson Amendment authorizes the IRS to regulate sermons and requires churches to give up their constitutionally protected freedom of speech in order to retain their tax-exempt status.

Which raises the question again (I’ve discussed it many times) of just how much muzzling churches are willing to accept in order to maintain that cherished tax-exempt status.  Sure, that status on not paying taxes on their income is extremely handy, it effectively increases revenue substantially, but at what cost?  In years past, before this country ditched its remaining Christian ethos and (among the power and media elites, anyway) went full bore towards persecution, it made sense, but does it still?

More and more we see how the cozy relationship the Church has enjoyed with the federal government for decades is costing it dearly.  HHS Mandates (due to federal funding), tacit or overt control over the direction of many Catholic charities (Catholic Charities and CRS funded over 90% by federal dollars), demands to perform abortions in federally-subsidized “Catholic” hospitals, etc, are all ways the federal government, as its leaders and the culture go more and more into outright anti-Christian bias, tries to control the Church.  There has always been a tacit threat that if bishops say “You cannot vote for Obama, because his policies are evil,” they would have their exempt status revoked.

That is the usual claim when millions of scandalized souls ask why Canon 915 has never been enforced against Nancy Pelosi, Joe Biden, or any of a number of public figures who are brazen in their heresy.

There is no question foregoing tax-exempt status would hurt a great deal.  There is no question much good (if it is good – often it is not, or just Alinskyite organizing at a different level) now being done with all the ways the federal government subsidizes the Church would be greatly diminished should that cozy relationship cease. But at some point it may have to, as the influence of progressive hatred of Christianity in government spreads and government adopts more and more anti-Church policies.  Some, like me, have argued that point was reached long ago, and the Church in this country made a terrible mistake in ever becoming dependent on the government teat (which was one of the main reasons the USCCB and its predecessors ever came into being, to be a central agency to receive and direct federal funding).

This dependence on federal funding also points back to fundamental understandings of the primary purpose of the Church – is it to be a worldly do good society, or the transcendent and exclusive Body instituted by Jesus Christ for the salvation of souls?  Prior to Vatican II, the answer was clearly the latter, but since, the emphasis has been much more on the former.  Not that the Church cannot be both.  But overemphasis on worldly works has played a role in deranging the Faith from its true purpose.

Thus, by returning to roots and stopping this slide into NGO irrelevance, the Church, through renewed emphasis on Her unique nature and role, would inspire more fervor in souls, which could well result in a net positive gain, monetarily, over the status quo.

But surely that’s just too radical to consider.

France grants asylum to Iraqi Christians, Obama administration continues cold indifference July 31, 2014

Posted by Tantumblogo in Basics, Christendom, disaster, Ecumenism, error, General Catholic, Holy suffering, horror, paganism, persecution, sadness, scandals, secularism, self-serving, sickness, Society.
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The Foreign Minister of the ragingly traditionalist endemically Catholic socialist and religiously indifferent government of France has offered, as a humanitarian gesture, to grant asylum to persecuted Iraqi Christians.  Meanwhile, muslim Alinksyite President Obama remains completely indifferent to their plight, even as he moves to “fundamentally transform” America through his encouragement of unconstrained immigration over our southern border.  So, it’s not that he doesn’t like immigrants…….it’s something else entirely:

The French government says it is willing to grant asylum to Iraqi Christians in the face of a jihadist onslaught against them.

“We are assisting displaced persons who are fleeing the Islamic State’s threats and seeking refuge in Kurdistan,” Foreign Minister Laurent Fabius and Interior Minister Bernard Cazeneuve said in a joint statement this week. “Should they so wish, we are prepared to offer them asylum on our soil.”

In Washington, meanwhile, a leading religious freedom advocate on Capitol Hill slammed both President Obama and Congress Tuesday for their “silence” about the plight of Iraq’s Christians, which he said amounted to “genocide.”

“The silence in this town – in Washington – is deafening,” Rep. Frank Wolf (R-Va.) said on the House floor. “Does Washington even care?”

That’s one of those questions that doesn’t even need an answer.

It is interesting the lengths to which American progressives will go in their hatred of Christians.  And by interesting, I mean terrifying.

That is why I say the American left, ignorant and muddle-headed as it is (with each generation more blindingly ignorant than the one before), will don the burqa before they would convert to Christianity, because they have turned being anti-Christian into one of the pillars of their deranged point of view.  To be Christian, in the pov of the left in this country, is to be ignorant, superstitious, backwards, afraid, etc – all the things the left really is, but desperately wants to believe it is not.  Thus in their usual projection, they have defined an enemy they can never reconcile with because the enemy is ultimately themselves. Even though, as a religion, Christianity, even very orthodox Christianity, is far more compatible with many aspects of progressive thought than is islam, which is hostile to everything that is not inshallah.  But that matters not, blinded by bias as they are.

Two rebuttals – there are progressive “Christians,” but the left accepts them as agent provocateurs within Christianity to make it acceptable to progressivism – that is, to turn it into just one more impotent NGO.  Secondly, aren’t almost all those Hispanic immigrants Christian, and the left loves them, right?  The left loves them not because they are Christian, but tolerate their Christianity in pursuit of the larger goals this influx can achieve. They have no interest in bringing Iraqi Christians here because a, the primary reason for their coming would be their religion and b, Mideast immigrants tend not to break so decisively in favor of the democrats in terms of voting.  Plus, the populations from the south are just much more convenient.

Meanwhile in Pakistan a muslim mob killed a 7 year old girl and her baby sister and grandmother due to a picture on Facebook that was deemed offensive to the pathological religion of islam.  “Yet, such violence is viewed by these extremists to be the act of truly faithful Muslims and pleasing to God.”

But these people don’t need to convert to be saved, right?!?

Oh, another final note. While the USCCB is falling all over itself promoting Hispanic immigration, has one US prelate visited the persecuted Iraqis and Syrians as a number of French bishops have?

 

The USCCB’s flawed left-wing approach to immigration ignores Leo XIII while overstressing post-conciliar ethos July 31, 2014

Posted by Tantumblogo in Basics, catachesis, Dallas Diocese, episcopate, error, foolishness, Immigration, sadness, scandals, secularism, self-serving, Society.
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I almost said “obsessively promoting post-conciliar ethos.”  A really good post by an author I’ve not read before, who explores how the USCCB’s selective reading of the dogmatic Magisterium has led it to promote dangerously flawed and destructive policies with regard to immigration:

The issue, of course, can be defined differently—as a “border crisis that has raised humanitarian concerns,” but the document disparages that definition and, by implication, the US citizens who hold it. It declares: “The US and its regional partners must avoid the simplistic approach of addressing the forced migration by forcing children back through increased border enforcement. This response is akin to sending these children back into a burning building they just fled. Instead the approach must prioritize protection for those who are displaced from their homes, especially children, the most vulnerable.” (This is hardly a responsible consideration of consequences. The bishops ignore the likely effects of failing to enforce the border—encouraging the countries of origin to continue neglecting their social problems, rewarding the lawless “coyotes” for violating US laws, and most important, subjecting the children to deprivation and physical/sexual abuse during their journey and hardship thereafter.) [We also need to understand the huge play on the word “child” going on.  50% of this immigrant flood are males 15-17 yo.  Many have prior drug and gang history.  These are not innocent 6 year olds with Dora jammies and a teddy bear trying to make it 1500 miles to a desert border crossing.]

The USCCB document devotes considerable space to  [almost exclusively post-conciliar] Catholic social teaching, stressing the idea that all people are created in the image and likeness of God and therefore possess an inherent dignity and fundamental human rights. Citing John Paul II, it claims that illegal as well as legal immigrants possess these rights and the illegals’ rights should be balanced against “the rights of nations to control their borders.” Note that the quoted phrasing compares people’s rights with nation’s rights. Is this a fair comparison? Should it not be the rights of certain people (immigrants) versus the rights of other people (citizens)? More about this when I discussRerum Novarum. [It is not a fair comparison and is in fact a deliberate and Orwellian twisting of language, again. People generate sympathy, powerful nations, rarely so.  But nations are comprised of……people. And the people of this nation have MORE rights, according to Aquinas, in this nation, than do those trying to immigrate. Just as the people of Honduras have more rights viz a viz the expat Americans who live there.]

Perhaps the most revealing characteristic of the USCCB document is that it speaks almost exclusively about the response of governments and the Catholic Church to the “humanitarian crisis,” but says virtually nothing about the response of American citizens, taxpayers, or even Catholic parishioners. For example, it declares that “the institutional Catholic Church in the United States has played a critical role in the care of unaccompanied children.” That wording is highly misleading. In reality, everything the “institutional Catholic Church” does is financed by citizen’s taxes (awarded in the form of federal grants), by the generosity of Catholic parishioners, or by both. [The vast majority comes from confiscatory taxation, at the end of a government gun]  The focus on institutional efforts is therefore an insult to the millions of Americans who actually fund the works of charity and mercy. It is also, in effect if not intent, a subtle denial that legal US residents also possess God-given dignity and rights. [Dang right, and a huge point. And that is why I think so many Americans feel so strongly about this fake “crisis,” because they see their rights – as taxpayers and people who have often given a lot for this country – being trampled on in favor of recent immigrants and narrow elite interests, like the incredibly corrupt and self serving US Chamber of Commerce.]

[The author Professor Ruggiero goes on to list elements of Rerum Novarum ignored by US Bishops, then gets back to his arguments…….]   By omitting any reference to Rerum Novarum, the USCCB document conveniently ignores a theological argument that challenges the bishops’ argument. [Gee, wonder why they left it out, then?  Surely not because they have some self-interest?!?  Perish the thought!  In fact, how  much pre-conciliar Catholicism has been dropped or attacked for that same reason?!]

 

If we apply Leo’s ideas to the present US immigration crisis, we will conclude that citizens of the United States are also children of God with fundamental rights that should not be abridged, especially not by the State.  [As I briefly allude in this post] Those rights include secure borders and protection from unfair taxation to provide entitlements to illegal aliens. [And disease vectors, terrorist risks, open venues for drug smuggling (how much of that could be prevented with a fence?!?), destruction of national unity, escalating gang violence, more drunken violence, higher crime rates, higher prison costs, families broken asunder, divorce, growth in santa muerte……I could go on a long time.  The costs of unconstrained immigration are very, very high, and the USCCB ignores almost all of them]  Moreover, again following Leo, we will conclude that, though we all have a debt to our less fortunate neighbors, it is a debt in charity rather than justice, and we are answerable to God, rather than to the government, for its fulfillment.

 

Even if the US bishops lean toward the thinking of Gustavo Gutiérrez,  [that is a nice little head snapping point there. I like that]  they are surely familiar with Leo XIII’s landmark encyclical,  [I would not make that assumption!  Most have probably heard of it, but I bet the vast majority have not read any of it. The scandal of atrocious formation has been ongoing for decades and applies to bishops too, now]   and they should therefore understand its relevance to the present discussion of illegal immigration. [Maybe they should, but it’s inconvenient knowledge, so it goes in the memory hole.]  When they dismiss a line of thought consistent with Pope Leo’s insights as a “simplistic approach,” they do Pope Leo, their fellow Catholics, and the Catholic theological tradition a grave disservice. And when they pretend that only their perspective is compatible with Christ’s exhortation to care for those in need, they deepen the offense. [All very true. But once again, maybe most of the bishops really do believe there was a “new pentecost” and a “newchurch” born in 1965, and that anything that came before that is inconvenient, contradictory, or just not “with it” enough, and can be safely ignored and marginalized]

———–End Quote———–

I don’t know a thing about the author – although I like the piece and respect the thinking in it – but I know a lot of people have started wandering through Rerum Novarum, Quas Primas, the Syllabus, Trent, etc, and started wondering…….why have I never heard of this?  Why have I never seen this wonderful, clear cut catechesis?  And then they come to start wondering, how did we get here? What happened? How on earth can I reconcile 1900 in the Church with 1990?  After cutting through the propaganda on the non-dogmatic uber-council, then they really start to wonder!

I don’t know if this professor, a good deal older than I, is on that path, but it’s a doozy!