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L’Osservatore Romano, official Vatican newspaper: Garland Mohammad cartoons “blasphemous” May 7, 2015

Posted by Tantumblogo in Basics, catachesis, disconcerting, Ecumenism, episcopate, General Catholic, paganism, persecution, secularism, Society, the return.
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Via Vox Cantoris, how can one blaspheme against a man?  If someone draws an ugly caricature of St. Augustine, it’s tragic, stupid, and unfortunate, but it’s not blasphemy.  Only muslims consider their false prophet to be above reproach, for it to be a grave offense against their sensibilities to draw any representation of him.  But they take offense at any representation of any religious figure, not just their prophet of doom, because muslims are total iconoclasts and hold a twisted hatred of any representation of the sacred, something they inherited from the crazed Jewish Zealouts who, along with heretical Arian “Christians,” formed the knowledge-base from which Mohammad, if he existed, built his man-made religion.

Apparently, we’re all muslims now, and have to share their quite fickle sensibilities.  L’Osservatore Romano castigated the Mohammad cartoon contest in Garland that resulted in a terrorist attack in the strongest terms:

The Vatican’s semi-official newspaper blasted a series of cartoons of Islam’s Prophet Muhammad as “blasphemous” but also condemned the “mad and bloodthirsty” extremists who opened fire at a Texas exhibit of the cartoons. [We see a lot of terms thrown around inappropriately. Orwellian disfigurement of language and its meaning has long been one of the left’s favorite ploys.  But I find it quite offensive that drawing pictures of a purported prophet gets labeled “blasphemous,” while we have real sacrilege and blasphemy occurring almost every day in illicit reception of the Blessed Sacrament from grave public sinners, like VP Biden, and no one, certainly not in officialdom, says a word.  It’s left to lowly bloggers with no authority and limited audiences note this regular occurrence of sacrilege, which is an ineffective response, frankly. But it’s the best we’ve got right now]

The front-page article in L’Osservatore Romano likened the exhibit in Garland, Texas, to pouring “gasoline on the fire” of religious sensitivities and was critical of its sponsors, the American Freedom Defense Initiative and professional provocateur Pamela Geller. [I’ve never been a fan of Geller, I’m nuts but I find her over the top, but this is an unfair caricature. Sure, she’s strident as all get out but she doesn’t do what she does just to get a rise out of people. She is one of the few people really committed to defending Western Civilization from the steady advance of islam. She is yet another person trying to fill the role abandoned by those who should be leading the defense.]

Police on May 3 shot and killed two gunmen who opened fire outside the exhibit that was designed to provoke Muslim sensitivities; the so-called Islamic State has since claimed responsibility for the attack that injured a security guard, and promised more to come.

The newspaper said the Texas event “resembles only remotely the initiatives of Charlie Hebdo,” [Which are far more offensive to everybody, especially Catholics. They have published some really grotesque stuff]  referring to the French satirical weekly whose office was attacked by Islamist extremists in January. Twelve people were gunned down at the Paris premises by the Islamist militants, who targeted magazine staff for publishing similar cartoons. [The only difference in the two muslim assaults was the presence of armed responders. That’s the only effective response to militant islam]

After the Charlie Hebdo attacks, Pope Francis condemned the idea of killing “in God’s name” but warned that “you cannot provoke, you cannot insult the faith of others. You cannot make fun of the faith of others.” [Except, apparently, faithful Catholics, what with dismissal of “counters of Rosaries” and neo-Pelagian prometheans and all the rest?]

While L’Osservatore Romano said the Texas exhibition could be compared to Charlie Hebdo “for its provocative intention, almost a desire to throw gasoline on the fire,” the Vatican newspaper reserved a stronger condemnation for those behind the attacks.

Garland was “certainly not Paris,” while the anticipated “participation of some ultra-conservative European politicians” was also noted. The Vatican newspaper went on to urge respect, which it described as “the necessary attitude to approach the religious experience of another.”

And there’s the real rub. This is the one aspect all the kumbayah “can’t we all just get along” one world indifferentists fail to grasp, and to which their program has no answer: what do you do when the other side steadfastly refuses to play along, sees your overtures to them as weakness, and always replies to your open hand with a mailed fist?  That’s been the case for decades now, and still we hear “we must respect other religions.” Of course we should, but not when they are killing literally millions of our own, which they have done over the past 3 decades or so.  Right now Christians all over the Mideast, Africa, and Europe are experiencing the vilest, cruelest persecution seen in scores of years, I find the idea that we should “urge respect” ludicrously inadequate as a response to the ongoing atrocities.

This idea of having such respect for not just erroneous, but blatantly hostile religions like islam is also counter to many hundreds of years of Church belief and practice.  “Error has no rights” was something any educated Catholic used to know.  But not anymore, we’re much too enlightened (note the loaded term) to think such coarse, unrefined, un-modern thoughts. However, I think a pretty good argument could be made that it has been in fact the abandonment of that long-time certainty in our own Church beliefs and practices and the falsity of others that has gotten us to the point we are at today, where indifference reigns, confusion abounds, the human aspect of the Church is prostrate, and Christian bodies litter the ground around the world.  No, it’s not the only explanation, but it has certainly played a part, and continues to play a part in the weak-willed, tentative response of the Church today to the ongoing persecutions and the advance of islam.

I pray this trend turns around, now.

KC priest defends Bishop Finn, condemns prosecutor – prosecutor fires back May 7, 2015

Posted by Tantumblogo in Basics, disaster, episcopate, error, General Catholic, Holy suffering, manhood, paganism, persecution, scandals, secularism, self-serving, Society, the struggle for the Church.
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In an exchange that has some potentially disconcerting implications for separation of Church and state – a flawed concept, anyway – a local priest in Kansas City publicly defended Bishop Finn, calling his prosecution politically motivated (it absolutely was), while the prosecutor involved has sent a letter not just to him, but to his entire congregation, attempting to refute the priest and defending her actions.

This exchange is important for the window it provides to those on the outside of the seething political environment that greeted Finn upon his arrival, which was the primary reason for his being charged with an actual crime (the only bishop in the US to be so charged, even if prelates like Bernadin, Mahony, Grahmann, Lynch, and many more committed far, far more serious failures of leadership and actual crimes).  It also was instrumental in his eventually being forced to “resign.”

As the Kansas City-St. Joseph Diocese tries to move past the resignation of Bishop Robert Finn, a priest has roiled the waters with a letter alleging that the criminal charges against Finn were politically motivated.

The prosecutor who filed the case, Jean Peters Baker, this week responded with a strongly worded letter of her own.

[There follows some pretty soft, favorable coverage of the prosecutor’s defense of herself.  I’m going to move past that and get to the priest’s claims]

In his letter, which was inserted into parish bulletins, Lockwood [the priest in question] said that Finn was a longtime friend and that his resignation “comes after a long, bitter, nasty campaign by many of our brothers and sisters, who, for whatever reason, were convinced that he needed to go.” [I’ll step out into motives land and provide one of the major reasons – KC is one of those odd places you’d never expect to find a bunch of rabid progressive katholycs, but they are there in spades. They’re also deeply connected with the levers of power, the abortion industry, and a really hideous Planned Barrenhood branch in Johnson County, KS.  Couple those two facts and you had a lot of katholycs with a lot of money and time who viewed Finn – or any strongly orthodox bishop – as worse than the devil incarnate. They were determined to be rid of him from the start, as Mother Cecilia of the wonderful Benedictines of Mary Queen of Apostles said. And in the end, through their strong influence on the politics of that town, they got their man, just as they got former Attorney General Phil Kline of Kansas removed from office for having the temerity to ask questions about their daughter’s underage abortions at Planned Barrenhood Johnson County. That sick imbroglio had former Housing and Human Development Secretary and Kansas Governor Kathleen Sebelius illegally ordering documents under subpoena destroyed – all to protect the reputations of this same group of very influential people. These folks are rich, virulently pro-abort, and mean.  Another reason they despised Finn was for his very strong commitment to the defense of life. Yes…..the webs are thick and disturbing, are they not?]

Lockwood blamed Finn’s critics — not the Ratigan scandal — for the resignation. His letter highlighted a rift between conservative and progressive factions within the diocese that intensified when Finn became bishop in 2005. [No, between faithful Catholics and the manifest heretics of the Distorter crowd]

“For the instigators of this unfortunate event, the issue was never the Ratigan affair,” Lockwood wrote. “There were definitely mistakes made in handling the situation by people who, it turned out, were in over their heads, but there was never any malice, or impulse to cover up anything. [Contrary to what we’ve seen in LA, Chicago, Boston, and many other locales, where there was definite malice aforethought]

“If this had happened on another, more popular bishop’s watch, the aftermath we have seen would not have occurred, because the motivation for the mob-scene that ensued was Bishop Finn’s fidelity to a classical concept of the church, not the cover-up of any misconduct.” [I have queried a good number of the best Catholics I know in KC and they all agree, this was all about getting rid of an ideological enemy, and not about protecting children, ending priest boy-rape, or anything else]

Lockwood said that those who were celebrating Finn’s resignation did so not because of the Ratigan case but because they viewed the bishop as an “arch-conservative.” 

“One of the most disturbing things I have seen in my years as a priest is the glee and meanness of many of our brothers and sisters in the aftermath of Bishop Finn’s resignation,” he said. “Champagne corks popped, celebrations begun, more mean and vicious things said by people whose Lord Jesus said to them, ‘Love one another.’”

There was no forgiveness, Lockwood said, “for this man who pled no contest to a politically motivated charge filed by an ambitious prosecutor with strong ties to the abortion industry, so that he might save his local church the pain and cost of a public trial.” [That’s how I see it]

The statute under which Finn was charged, Lockwood said, “was not even applicable to what happened, but such is our legal and political society.” [True. And to my knowledge has never been used before or since]

He told parishioners that “we have become mean, low and self-involved.” [Except for me. I’m awesome]

No one has won anything here; we’ve all lost,” he said. “An honorable man has been unjustly disgraced, and we have sacrificed his dignity and our own in a rush to punish and destroy…”

In her response, Baker said she was raised in the Catholic faith and attended Catholic schools run by nuns who “guided students by their own demonstration of accountability and commitment to our education.” [Which, since she’s at least my age if not a few years older, means absolutely nothing. And she’s been nothing if not ambitious, seeking higher office on more than one occasion.  Notice the attempt to plant a seed in your head that she was taught like a traditional Catholic girl by nuns in habits, but by the time she went to school in the 70s/80s there were no more habits and dang few nuns in schools. I’d say this counts as a somewhat misleading statement.]

“My church parish was blessed with many talented priests,” she said, “but the notion that no one is above the law was infused in me by these strong women.” [“Strong women?” Such feminist speak doesn’t resonate with many readers here, but it probably does with the Distorter crowd she is trying to reach.  I find it highly revealing how often progressive Katholycs appeal to perceptions of orthodoxy in the past in order to establish their own.]

I don’t want to make this post drag on too long, but I think that little rhetorical trick we see by the prosecutor Baker is very important. In a few lines she tries to convey herself as a scion of authentic Catholicism, and then subtly advances radical progressive notions with a “strong woman” drop so pregnant with feminist meaning.  The whole thing about “above the law” is frankly amazing, given that they practically had to make a law up in order to charge Finn with something, anything, to be rid of that damnable priest.

Am I the only that’s noticed that the “rule of law” in this country is increasingly a joke?  There’s one rule for the rich, one rule for the left, and another rule for the rest of us.  Being a less-than-rich, religiously committed “wingnut” is the worst thing you can be in this country today.

One final thought.  +Finn’s brother bishops knew this was a railroad job – where were they?  He’s still getting railroaded in the press, and in a section I did not excerpt, Finn’s good buddy Archbishop Naumann of KC, Kansas basically says “well, let’s just forget about him.”  Then again, Finn’s orthodoxy was at least as unpopular with the USCCB as it was with a lot of folks in Kansas City.

Last night’s prayer vigil outside strip club was a smashing success! May 7, 2015

Posted by Tantumblogo in Admin, awesomeness, Christendom, Dallas Diocese, General Catholic, Glory, Grace, Interior Life, manhood, persecution, sanctity, sexual depravity, Society, Virtue.
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I am on cloud nine today.  I was so incredibly pleased, and felt so incredibly blessed, to take part in the prayer vigil outside the so-called Men’s Club, one of many houses of lust and license in our Diocese.  A good number of men came out.  I was really pleased with the turnout on only this our second effort.  And what a great group of guys!  I’d thank you all by name but I’d prefer to protect your anonymity.  Nevertheless, you know who you are, and you have my utmost gratitude and respect.  I really liked the beret, btw.  That was a great touch.

Last night had a much different feel than the first prayer vigil.  The first night, there were only a few of us and we were pretty much ignored.  But last night there were quite a few more of us and we attracted more attention, both positive and negative.  I know at least one man leaving the post office gave us a big thumbs up and a honk.  On the other side, it seemed like the management at the Men’s Club wasn’t real pleased with our presence, and we also got some hassling by a few drivers.  One in particular looked pretty steamed, which was odd, as he didn’t seem to be going anywhere near the strip joint.  I also noticed that the hostility seemed to increase as the sun went down and darkness encroached.  We were a light in that darkness, and some didn’t seem too happy about that.  I pray for them.  If this effort continues, we will need to steel ourselves for some negative reactions, but then we will have been blessed to have suffered for our Lord.

I have to say, I’m really stoked and I look forward to the next vigil.  Next time I plan on staying longer than one hour.  I had to leave because of several complicating factors.  But with a pretty good sized group, I think it might be feasible to stay longer.

Guys, I so appreciate your coming out. As I said last night, I am open to suggestions on many fronts.  I still think we should limit our actions to quiet prayer and presence for the foreseeable future, but I am looking for ideas on prayer intentions/and focus. I like praying all the mysteries of the Rosary, but if we stay longer we may need more prayers.  Of course, I’m happy praying the Rosary continually.

I’m also looking for suggestions to name this group.  Since it looks like it’s “happening,” we’ll need something to call ourselves.  My initial suggestion is the Society of Saint Lawrence Justinian.  Saint Lawrence Justinian lived in a time when public morals were at a nadir. He practiced great personal virtue and penance to keep his purity.  As bishop he managed to greatly reform public morals and founded many religious houses to accept the many vocations his example inspired.  But that’s just one suggestion. I am open to ideas.

Also, I am open to additional ways to publicize this effort and attract more men to it.  As some mentioned last night, if you are on Facebook, please spread the word far and wide.  I do want to keep this a primarily Catholic effort but souls of good will are of course welcome.  Please invite your friends and fellow-parishioners you think will be interested.

A couple of pics from last night.  I think the post office location is really good for now.  If we get brave later, maybe we’ll cross the Rubicon of Northwest Highway.  God bless and thank you all again!  It is really an inspiration to me, to know that there are still good men out there willing to fight for Our Lord, His Church, our families, our city, and so much else besides.

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Next vigil will be Wednesday June 3.  I pray I see you all and maybe a few more there!

And now for some Catholic beauty! May 7, 2015

Posted by Tantumblogo in Art and Architecture, awesomeness, Basics, General Catholic, Glory, Grace, Latin Mass, Liturgy, priests, sanctity, the struggle for the Church, Tradition, Virtue.
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Enough bad news lately.  Now for some Catholic goodness and beauty.

First, the Benedictines of Norcia are working on a chant CD of their own.  Some very nice coverage of the order via New Liturgical Movement below:

A different source of Catholic glory and beauty: reader MFG sent me links to photos of a recent Solemn High Mass offered for the Charlotte, NC TLM community.  The Carolina Catholic Chorale sang the Mass setting.   A few photos of the Mass below, kindly uploaded by John Cosmos who photographed the Mass:

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Events last night have me thinking how very blessed we are to have priests embracing the Traditional Mass and traditional conduct of the Faith.  Yes there is very much wrong with the world and Church, we face a very troubling future, but there is also a still largely hidden, and still quite nascient, revival in the offing.  There are a growing number of good, faithful priests, and a growing number of people who find great spiritual fruit and solace in these troubled times in the traditional practice of the Faith.  For all that, and even for the recognition that there is a crisis in the Church and world, we must be eternally thankful to our Blessed Lord, who has given us eyes to see and ears to hear.

I know MFG and others are working to bring others to the glory of the TLM and the traditional practice of the Faith.  I pray their efforts bear copious fruit!