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Non sequitur: Ooops October 28, 2014

Posted by Tantumblogo in Admin, disaster, error, Flightline Friday, foolishness, non squitur, silliness, Society.
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It looks like the Russian-engined competitor for SpaceX NASA ginned up to supply the International Space Station had a little oopsie:

The Antares rocket and Cygnus spacecraft – consisting of a great deal of Euro-content – unusually launch from Mid-Atlantic Regional Spaceport (MARS) in Virginia. This launch site is at such a high latitude it is at a distinct disadvantage, but somehow the state of Virginia enticed Orbital Sciences Corp to use it.  There is only one orbital launch complex at MARS, and over 25o tons of fuel and liquid oxygen just burned it to a crisp. I don’t think they will be launching from there anytime soon.

It looked to me that something went awry with the launch tower falling away. I could be wrong.  There has been much sturm and drang regarding the current sanctions imposed against Russia and the Russian engines used on several important US launch vehicles (not SpaceX, though).  Those engines will not be available in future should the sanctions continue much longer.  It is somewhat unusual to see only the engine of a rocket explode.  The rest of it remained intact until impact with the ground.  Sabotage?  Doubtful.  Still, rather strange.

And SpaceX remains in the driver’s seat, in spite of NASA and Air Force preference for suppliers that have in bed with them for a longer period of time.

The Council of Trent is still completely relevant today October 28, 2014

Posted by Tantumblogo in Basics, catachesis, Ecumenism, episcopate, error, General Catholic, Papa, reading, scandals, secularism, Society, SOD, Tradition.
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I am reading a book on the history of the Church written in the late 20s by a Father Poulet and translated into English in the 30s by a Dr. Raemers.  I already pulled one set of quotes out of the book regarding protestantism and the immorality of both private interpretation and justification by faith alone.  The fact that I pulled these quoted out does not mean that I am not a sinner – as one commenter  ludicrously tried to claim – but that was not the point.  The point is, how much good can come from a theology that is rooted so deeply in error and can be shown to have given rise to other errors and even highly destructive behaviors within even months of its promulgation and acceptance by confused souls?  The answer is, not much.  This latter consideration used to weigh heavily on the Church’s approach to separated sects, but under the misguided ecumenical movement of today, these considerations of basic facts of theological derangement are ignored in the pursuit of earthly goals.

But on a broader level, there is much wisdom in this basic history book (intended for college students and adults) that extends far beyond the errors of protestants. As some excerpts from the canons of the Council of Trent show, they have great relevance for Catholics today, which only makes sense, as Trent was a Council for all time, and not just for one particular moment of mid-20th century humanist exuberance.  See if you agree with me as I quote from pp. 91-93 of Church History by Dom Charles Poulet of Solesmes:

“The teaching mission of the Church,” says the Council of Trent, at the head of its dogmatic decrees,”is to keep intact those two sources of our faith, Holy Scripture and Sacred Tradition.  In virtue of this authority which it has received from Christ, the Council reiterates the ancient canon of the Scriptures, declares the Latin translation known as the Vulgate to be the only normal and authentic text, and, finally, watches over its spread and interpretation.  Again, in matters pertaining to faith and morals no one may interpret the Scriptures against the authoritative interpretation of the Church or against the unanimous consent of the Fathers.” [And what would the Fathers have to say about admitting those in manifest states of adultery/concubinage to the Blessed Sacrament, or to be married by high Church officials without Confession and any sign of contrition on their part, or at least the termination of their concubinage prior to marriage, let alone the enormous scandal of purported “gifts” offered the Church by unrepentant sodomites.  They would be staggered at the audacity of the error, and broken-hearted to learn its high source]

…….The Council also defined the divine institution, nature, minister and effects of the Sacraments, as well as the dispositions required to receive them.  It concerned itself especially with the Eucharist and the Mass, which had been so distorted by protestants.  The Council defined both the reality of the Real Presence and its integrity.  “If anyone denies that in the Sacrament of the Most Holy Eucharist are truly, really, and substantially contained the Body and Blood, together with the Soul and Divinity of Our Lord Jesus Christ, and hence the whole Person of Jesus Christ, but maintains that they are there only as a sign or figure, or virtually; let him be anathema.”  In respect to the mode of this Presence, and in reply to the objection of John Calvin that if Christ were here on earth, He would no longer be in Heaven, the Council defined: “There is no contradiction between the two facts that Our Savior continues to exist in Heaven and at the right hand of His Father, according to His natural manner of being (juxta modum existendi naturalem), and that nevertheless He is present to us in several other places by His Substance and in a sacramental manner (sacramentaliter prasens sua substantia nobis adsit).  This second mode of being is one which we can but imperfectly describe in words, although our reason, enlightened by faith, can understand how such a mode of being is possible with God.”  Finally, in opposition to the Lutheran theory of impanation, or consubstantiation, the Council affirmed the Doctrine of Transubstantiation: “If anyone says that in the Most Holy Sacrament of the Eucharist there remains the substance of bread and wine, together with the Body and Blood of Jesus Christ, and denies that marvelous and unique change of the whole substance of bread into the Body, and the whole substance of the wine into the Blood, a change which leaves only the appearances of bread and wine, and which the Catholic Church very appropriately terms transubstantiation: let him be anathema.

———–End Quote————

A few points on that second paragraph quoted.  First, was that really the best Calvin could come up with, that Christ, the Second Person of the Blessed Trinity, God Himself, could not be both in Heaven and on earth?!?  Really?!?  Because that’s just so infantile and silly it is ludicrous. No wonder Saint John’s Apocalypse was also under scrutiny by the protestant revolutionaries (again, I do not call them reformers, nor do I capitalize protestants, because I think it has been an enormous mistake by faithful sons of the Church to give even that much credit to these rebels against the Faith.  They did not reform, but deform, and they are not Churches proper, and thus do not deserve to be capitalized.  I know that violates rules of spelling, but I care not) for exclusion from the Canon of Scripture, since it makes plain that Christ’s Sacrifice is always ongoing before the Father in Heaven and that the prayers and sacrifices of the faithful on earth (especially the Mass) are also offered in that same mystical rite so beyond our limited comprehension.

Once again, too, we see strong denunciations of the modern error in the Church, so distressingly widespread, of lowering the Blessed Sacrament to just a sign or symbol. I must say, that has to be a driving belief behind the most recent attempts to destroy the Church’s Moral Doctrine, because no one to me could possibly believe in the Real Presence and yet be pushing so hard to see it constantly received sacrilegiously!  We could also add those numerous pro-abort politicians, Supreme Court justices, and others, who like to pretend at faithfulness and receive the Blessed Sacrament (on their occasional appearances at Mass), albeit with great sacrilege again.

Truth is divisive.  Truth is clarifying.  It is not uniting.  It is not indifferent. It is not worldly.  It is highly dubious that Truth is “ecumenical.”  Truth cuts through, it separates, it casts out.  Truth is not subtle shades of grey, contradictory, or requiring of a PhD to understand.

God willing, if we are deserving, we may soon return to a more sane understanding of the Truth that Christ has revealed through His Church.  Or it could be that the local priest is correct, and that we are deep into the Passion of the Church, which will mirror the Passion of Our Lord Jesus Christ.  He said we are in the time when Peter denied Christ.  Perhaps that is true.  If so, we have a very long night and day of suffering and misery ahead of us.

God have mercy on us.




When Pope Francis spoke on corruption, just who did he condemn? October 28, 2014

Posted by Tantumblogo in Basics, episcopate, error, foolishness, General Catholic, Holy suffering, Papa, persecution, scandals, secularism, self-serving, shocking, Society, SOD, Spiritual Warfare.
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I know many may not be comfortable with this post. I am sorry that I feel there is some necessity in putting this out.  I know many others have already covered Pope Francis’ amazing comments on corruption from last Thursday, but none of that coverage has mentioned the part of this address I found most……..I don’t know, revealing, disconcerting, damning?  You be the judge (just not of ……..you know).

Now, for the few who may not know, Pope Francis had an address on Thursday in which he, among other things, stated his opposition to both the death penalty and life imprisonment:

“All Christians and people of good will are thus called today to struggle not only for abolition of the death penalty, whether it be legal or illegal and in all its forms, but also to improve prison conditions, out of respect for the human dignity of persons deprived of their liberty. And this, I connect with life imprisonment,” he said. “Life imprisonment is a hidden death penalty.”

The pope noted that the Vatican recently eliminated life imprisonment from its own penal code.

Just for clarity’s sake I would like to reiterate that the constant Doctrine of the Faith regarding the death penalty has been that the state has the right of the sword. It is a prudential matter to determine whether, or when, to apply that power. Pope Francis may not like that fact, he may think that the death penalty’s day has passed, but he cannot declare the Church in formal opposition to the use of the death penalty, because She has never been so opposed and is not now.  For many centuries the Church cooperated in the use of the death penalty by the civil authority for those who committed crimes against the Church.  While many may find this cooperation abhorrent today, for me, it was just another indication of how much more seriously the Church, and the souls within Her, took at that time their considerations of the eternal life and their recognition that this life on earth is not the be all and end all of our existence.  For those many long centuries, the taking of a human life, even in the name of the defense of the Faith, was seen as far preferable than running the risk of exposing many souls to pernicious, destroying error.  But, as a local priest might say, compared to them, we are pygmies in the Faith, and those men giants.

I will also note in passing that Pope Francis’ declaration regarding the Vatican is pointless. When is the last time a murder took place in that uniform community of celibate males?  How about an armed robbery, a rape, or a terror attack?  So it is not such a great work of magnanimity, it is more another post-conciliar PR move.

Moving on, the comments that many found most perplexing in this somewhat meandering address were the following:

The corrupt one does not perceive his own corruption. It is a little like what happens with bad breath: someone who has it hardly ever realizes it; other people notice and have to tell him,” the pope said. “Corruption is an evil greater than sin. More than forgiveness, this evil needs to be cured.

Far be it from me to question the theological formation of the reigning pontiff, but this statement is simply amazing on so many levels.  There is no evil greater than sin, because all evil stems from sin.  So it’s a non sequitur at the top.  But often overlooked in dyspepsia about the first part is what is said in the second part: what is being said there?  How does this correlate with all the calls to mercy we’ve heard?  So, apparently, there are some things we can be judgmental about, especially those that interest sociaslist-leaning (Peronist) elites from Argentina?  Who are we to judge the “corruption” of another?  Note there was also a bit of nationalism in this part of the address, where the “corruption” was ascribed, at least to some degree, to being a particular fault of “Anglo-type” capitalism.

But for me, the most incredible part of the address is this, below:

The pope spoke scathingly about the mentality of the typical corrupt person, whom he described as conceited, unable to accept criticism, and prompt to insult and even persecute those who disagree with him.

Hmmm.   Unable to accept criticism?  Prompt to insult?  Persecutes those who disagree with him?  Conceited?

And as the Pope readily noted, corrupt people are notoriously difficult to convince of their corruption.  What they need is to be cured, or, as a Catholic might say…….converted.

I believe this was much the point of Father Ray Blake’s excellent post, which conclusion I excerpt below:

The impression that is given is that Justice in the Church is itself corrupted, indeed, that it is actually about settling scores and has nothing to do with truthfulness which was once considered a Christian virtue. Rather than being consoled by accounts of these investigations I become increasingly alarmed, it seems as if some religious orders or diocese that seem to produce fruit and are orthodox are subject to investigation whilst others which are barren and often highly unorthodox carry on in their own sweet way, especially if the have powerful or wealthy friends at court.  The problem is that Justice appears to used as a robber baron or some New World dictator might use it, as a means of intimidation and threat, not to bring the Salvific Light of Christ to bear on dark and hidden corners. It is as if some are above the Law and others crushed by it.

In other words, physician, heal thyself.  It is more than slightly ironic that in this most “merciful” and “humble” of pontificates, both are amazingly lacking, especially if one happens to fall on the wrong side of the ecclesiastical spectrum.  Far from a populist pontificate, it seems far more aristocratic and elitist, much more in the mold of the Renaissance Borgias than the early Church Fathers.

And yet, of course, the Pope remains capable of saying some good things, but I will note the below, which a commenter mentioned and which is being much ballyhooed in some quarters, seems passing strange with respect to the documents just released by the Synod on the family:

In an audience with members of an international Marian movement, Pope Francis warned that the sacrament of marriage has been reduced to a mere association, and urged participants to be witnesses in a secular world.

“The family is being hit, the family is being struck and the family is being bastardized,” the Pope told those in attendance at the Oct. 25 audience.

He warned against the common view in society that “you can call everything family, right?”

“What is being proposed is not marriage, it’s an association. But it’s not marriage! It’s necessary to say these things very clearly and we have to say it!” Pope Francis stressed.

He lamented that there are so many “new forms” of unions which are “totally destructive and limiting the greatness of the love of marriage.”

That’s all very true.  And it’s nice to hear. But to quote my father: “a hundred ‘attaboy’s’ are wiped out by one ‘aw shit!'” Maybe not fair, but certainly human nature. I will note these comments are very much opposed to the spin that came out of the Synod, to Cardinal Kasper’s claims of having the fervent support of the Pope in the Synodal attacks on the family, and in Pope Francis’ refusal to clarify his stance with respect to the Synod in any public statement.

Modernists thrive on confusion.  Pope Francis, I think, does enjoy adulation and attention.  He was with a group of fairly orthodox Catholics. You do the math.

Perhaps I am being unfairly critical.  Perhaps I am not giving the utmost benefit of the doubt.  But criticism of a Holy Pontiff is most certainly permitted to the faithful, especially when we are confronted with such a bewildering array of statements, PR events, doctrinal proposals put forth in the Pope’s name, reactions, calls for clarifications, virtual defenestrations of the more orthodox members of the Curia, vibrant religious orders shut down, an apparently growing movement to sack any faithful/orthodox bishop who has even a slight scandal in his diocese, etc., etc.

Again, you do the math. Maybe the Pope’s statements on the family above fill you with great hope, but then I would ask, do the documents produced by the Synod, especially the mid-term “Relatio” which speaks in the Pope’s own voice, correspond with these statements above?  Does the principle of non-contradiction still apply?  And what of the Synod fathers rejecting the most egregious statements of the Relatio, and excluding them from the final report, and then the Pope reinserts them on his own authority?

So please forgive me if in my sinfulness and hardness of heart I am not overly relieved to see the Pope denounce attacks on the family.  I appreciate this defense, given in nicely strong terms, but I must ask if recent actions do not correspond with this bit of rhetoric?  Could these words be the start of some great conversion?  Again, forgive me if I am skeptical. Just today there were some more than slightly discomfiting words from the Holy Father regarding evolution and the “big bang” theory:

Reading Genesis we imagine that God is ‘a wizard with a magic wand’ capable of doing all things, he said. ‘But it is not so. He created life and let each creature develop according to the natural laws which he had given each one.

God is not capable of doing all things?  What?!?  How counter to Scripture and Tradition can you get?!?  You mean God is bound by our pathetic human theories, theories that have been proven wrong time and time again in the history of the religion of science?  Coupled with the second half of the statement – taken in context – these are almost the views of an “enlightenment” deist.


So I do not think it will do to get into a “tit for tat” game with Pope Francis’ many off the cuff (or are they?) remarks.  For one, the tally may not bode well for Pope Francis’ Catholicity, and then there is the matter that one crazy statement does more damage than a hundred orthodox ones do good.  Again, maybe not fair, but that is human nature.

Pope Leo XIII on the duty of Catholic parents to educate their children in the Faith…. October 28, 2014

Posted by Tantumblogo in awesomeness, Basics, catachesis, Christendom, Domestic Church, error, family, General Catholic, Glory, Grace, Papa, sanctity, Tradition, true leadership, Virtue.
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…….and otherwise.  I read the following a while back and have been meaning to post this material for some time.  From the excellent biography of Pope Leo XIII by Fr. Bernard O’Reilly DD, an exhortation by this most underrated of popes to parents to be most careful guides in the formation of their children, especially in the Faith but also in many other regards.  Excerpts from pp. 234-239 (this may be broken up n-lplinto more than one post):

We should have too much to say on this subject of defective education, on which depend the direction and welfare of the present and the coming generation.  We need not lose time in proving the obligation and the importance for parents to educate their children well; the voice of nature, the precepts of religion, and the sense of all mankind agree in affirming and inculcating this duty.

Still, to confess the truth, who is it that does not perceive and deplore the neglect and falling-off in the discharge of this duty which are evident in many Catholic families at this time, and that does not thence draw sad auguries for our future?  Unwise and lazy parents do not know how to estimate the nobleness of the mission entrusted to them.  They generally measure according to the calculations of a low and selfish interest the blessing of having children; they do not at all think of the great debt which they contract toward God, from the first day they become parents, to increase in their offspring and to continue the number of His true adorers; of that which they contract toward themselves to prepare and transmit an honored inheritance of good example and virtues; of the debt contracted toward society to rear for it members laborious, moral, and edifying.

pope-leo-xiiiIt is true that in our day another maxim is current bearing on this same subject – namely, “To the state belongs the training of youth.”  Does this maxim avail to excuse the lamentable negligence of parents in our time?

[Key…..] The duty of education, inculcated by natural reason, is so essential to the parental character and the authority that they cannot decline its performance.  The state authority, by its place in the order of things, is not called upon to discharge this great parental duty, but to help the natural educators in their work, and to watch and protect the interior discipline and good direction of the family. [And this is a time honored tenet of the Faith, seemingly forgotten among so many even entrusted with the highest of offices in the Church, that it is to the parent that the duty of education of children falls, and not the state.  This was once so thoroughly understood within Christendom that it went without saying, but as leftism has penetrated the culture more and more deeply, constantly arrogating to the state functions that belong by right of religion and the natural law to the family, more and more have forgotten this core truth.  This is a great defense of homeschooling, and for not  just state tolerance of it, but state endorsement and promotion of it!  But bureaucrats care only for their security and the constantly increasing inflow of money, so they oppose homeschooling as a threat.]

What are, in reality, the relations by which man is placed from his birth, as one of the beings in the order of creation?  He comes into the world as God’s creature, Who has brought him into existence; he is the child of those who have given him temporal life; he is ordained first toward religion and then toward his family; his first duties are subjection and service to God, and dependence on his parents. The family is neither the creation nor the emanation of civil society (or the state); the power of parents is not a concession of human law.  The relations and duties which obtain between parents and children are anterior and superior to all human aggregation. [That is to say, government at any and all levels.  And yet now the state is grown so supreme thatPope_Leo_XIII it would dictate to people by false and oppressive laws the very definition of what a family is, pretending that sodomites and any youth they – I know not how – have suzerainty over are somehow equivalent to the family as it has always been understood!  And then we have the entire matter of divorce and remarriage……]

Man is indeed born sociable; but belonging, before all, to the domestic and religious society, he only comes into the society of the state through the family and already prepared by the teaching of religion and under the guidance of parental authority.  Therefore it is that as in the matter of education only an auxiliary part can be attributed to the state authority, so is it evident that the charge of educating remains as a burden they cannot decline on the conscience of the parents, who for that work are the representatives of God the creator, and are invested with His authority[Authority over children does not go God-state-parents-child, but God-parents-child.]

If in our days all parents understood their duties in this light, and if, conceiving an adequate notion of the work they are commissioned to do, they instructed their children in time on the elevated duties and relations which every human being has to fulfil both in the domestic and the religious society, assuredly the state would be much the better for it.  For no one can doubt that children who are submissive to parental authority and devoted to their family, that men who have the fear of God and who are obedient to their religion, cannot fail to be also honored citizens and serviceable to their fellow-men……..

xiii_leo…...You must distinguish between education, and instruction, between the moral training and molding of the heart and the simple cultivating of the intellect.  Instruction, as such, ordinarily consists in filling the minds of the young with a furniture of knowledge that can help them, according to their years, to turn to a useful account their intellectual and bodily powers. 

The moral training, on the contrary, should be a foundation for the development and the application of the great principles of morality and religion as bearing on men’s conduct within the family and in the social sphere.

Scientific instruction will give you learned and clever young men and women; religious education will give you, on the contrary, honest and virtuous citizens.  [Indeed, it should. But religious education in the Church today, such as it is, is almost always so dominated by the conceits of progressivism and modernism that religious education within the Church (almost all schools, colleges, CCD programs, etc) is actually more detrimental to souls than avowedly secular education.  There is something singularly poisonous about religious education in the Church today, which most often results in souls invincibly convinced of the most pernicious and destructive errors.  Outside traditional parishes (sorry to beat that drum, I do not mean to bash your non-traditional parish, this is simply my experience) religious education is in utter collapse.  All parents should undertake the dominant role in the religious formation of their children, but especially those where the danger of destructive instruction is high] Instruction, separated from education properly so called, serves rather to fill young hearts with vanity than to discipline them aright.  It is quite otherwise with a right education; such a training, underPapst_leo_xiii_athe guidance of religion…….knows how to implant and to cultivate virtue in the most illiterate souls without the aid of much scientific polishing or instruction. [And the implantation of virtue in souls is infinitely more important than any “scientific” or secular education, frankly]

Then, again, and to speak of the truth, do parents pay attention to the nature, the solidity of the instruction given to their children?  Do they see to it that it is sound, useful, well-ordered, and fit to prepare and help an education such as is fit for Christian children and members of a Catholic community; that those who give such instruction have the necessary gifts of religious conviction, of virtue, of learning, such as may win them the respect and obedience of their pupils; [And I think of the Catholic school teachers who wear ludicrously immodest clothing not just to school, but to Mass.  And they think they are so daring.]  that, above all, the study of religion, so essential to the education and the virtuous life of young people, should hold the foremost place among all other studies, should have a proper and adequate development, and be carried on under the direction of the Church, the depository and teacher of religious doctrines? [And here is where Catholic education has fallen down in the past 5 decades. Pupils are no longer taught by nuns at least outwardly devoted to the practice of virtue and religious orthodoxy, but lay people of varying degrees of faithfulness, education, and outlook.  There are some very good lay teachers of religion, no doubt, but there are also many very, very bad ones.  Most embrace at least some heresy.  The vast majority reject Church Doctrine on multiple points. Many lead scandalous lives.  And yet they are given charge of Catholic children day, after day, after day, telling them things like the Church does not have women priests because “the pope is a male chauvinist pig.”  Garbage in, garbage out.]

You see, therefore, that in this respect alone there cannot be (in a secular school) [or a secularized Catholic school]  a sufficient guarantee for a right and complete education, nor any reliief for parents of the great burden on their conscience.

————–End Quote—————

Sorry for the long post. I will break this into two parts and complete Pope Leo XIIIs – still Cardinal Pecci when he wrote this – exhortation on the right education of Catholic children.

I pray you find this useful and edifying.  As far as I am concerned, and relative to our own times, Pope Leo XIII’s words are nothing but a brilliant and forceful endorsement of homeschooling and the return to traditional Catholic education.

If I might make one more personal comment: oh that our popes and prelates spoke like this again!  How edifying, how much encouragement such words give!




REMINDER: Holy Face Devotions, First Friday coming up at the Dallas Carmel October 28, 2014

Posted by Tantumblogo in Admin, awesomeness, Basics, Eucharist, family, fun, General Catholic, Glory, Grace, religious, sanctity, Tradition, Virtue.
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Holy Face Devotions will be held at 3pm at the Discalced Carmelites at 500 Flowers Ave Dallas 75211 on Sunday, Nov. 2.  Benediction follows First Friday is November 7.  I will try to put out a reminder on First Friday next week.

All info on upcoming Carmelite events here——->>>>>>>Allnightcarmelites_november2014

And then a couple of photos from my day off.  A commenter may be glad to see something I got at the flight museum.  Meanwhile, Benedict has already entered flight training.  Sorry for the botched photo from Sunday’s Procession, I was in a big hurry.



Yes, that is his idea of a smile.  Man did he have a total meltdown about an hour later.

Look for updates to A-4 Flightline Friday soon!

Look for updates to A-4 Flightline Friday soon!