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RIP, local pro-life hero Chuck Pelletier January 18, 2016

Posted by Tantumblogo in Abortion, awesomeness, contraception, Dallas Diocese, Four Last Things, General Catholic, Glory, Grace, Holy suffering, manhood, mortification, sanctity, Society, true leadership, Virtue.
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You’ve probably never heard of Chuck Pelletier if you live outside the DFW area, but he was almost solely responsible for starting up the pro-life effort in the Diocese of Fort Worth.  A Vietnam war hero who was severely injured (and paralyzed) after being shot down while piloting his AH-1 Cobra attack helicopter in combat, he did not let his painful physical condition keep him from an active life of service to others.  Mr. Pelletier died late last week at the age of 72.

A nice eulogy from the FW diocesan newspaper, the North Texas Catholic:

Clutching his ever-present rosary, Capt. Charles J. (Chuck) Pelletier II, a tireless advocate for the unborn and decorated Vietnam War hero, died Jan. 14 surrounded by loving family and friends. He was 72. 

A Mass of Christian Burial is planned for 10 a.m. Friday, Jan. 22 in St. Patrick Cathedral — 1206 Throckmorton Street in downtown Fort Worth. A Rosary service will be held Thursday, Jan. 21, at 6 p.m. also at St. Patrick Cathedral.

A native of Michigan and graduate of Notre Dame University, Pelletier and his wife, Pat, opened Mother and Unborn Baby Care of North Texas in June 1984. Their dedication to the crisis pregnancy center, along with the work of volunteers and donors, is credited with saving more than 9,000 lives.

For more than three decades, Pelletier led the Good Friday Vigil for Life outside local abortion centers. He and his wife also organized a diocese-wide Mass for Babies Who Died Before Baptism every October.

Several days a week, the Pelletiers and other volunteers braved ice storms, heat waves, and rain to pray outside abortion centers and offer assistance and support to women arriving for abortions…….

….People have been born, baptized, and discovered their faith thanks to the Pelletiers…….

…..Michael Demma, director of the Diocesan Respect Life Office, said Chuck Pelletier was someone people in the pro-life movement looked up to for years.

“Chuck was in the trenches before most of us knew there were trenches,” he said, referring to hard-fought legislative and personal battles to end abortion. “He was a great leader and great motivator. The love just flowed out of him for the babies and their moms.”……

…….Angela Gill met Chuck Pelletier when she was 19 years old and began volunteering at the Mother and Unborn Baby Care Center. She remembers his professionalism and concern that any interaction with troubled, pregnant mothers was done correctly.

“He knew we were dealing with people’s lives and women’s souls,” the St. Elizabeth Ann Seton parishioner recalls. [Souls……that’s what it’s really about.  Yes lives are infinitely important, but what good is it if a man gain the whole world and lose his soul?  The souls that fall into hell over abortion is something that is sometimes forgotten in the mainstream, if you will, pro-life effort] “He came from a military background, and we had to do everything by the book. There was no improvising. One wrong word could mean life or death.”

Gill, now the mother of six boys, says her mentor shared his devout faith and offered advice on how to be an effective counselor. He also helped her deal with infertility issues during the early years of her marriage by urging her to follow the Creighton Model for natural family planning.

“He would introduce me by saying, ‘this is Angela. I’m the one who helped get her pregnant,’ just to see me blush,” the young mother says. “He was there for me during my formative years. If I ever had a question or felt discouraged, I would call him.”

Before moving to Fort Worth in the early 1970s, Pelletier served in the U.S. Army as a helicopter pilot serving two tours in Vietnam. He sustained a severe spinal cord injury when his Cobra helicopter was shot down on Nov. 1, 1970 during a rescue mission. The crash left him partially paralyzed, and he was forced to use a wheelchair for the rest of his life. His valor was recognized with a Purple Heart, Bronze Star, Distinguished Flying Cross, and Combat Infantry Badge. [He and his wife also got to “enjoy” insults and hostility from leftists in Michigan in the waning days of Vietnam, which prompted their move to Texas, as this article on Pelletier from 2013 (also well worth reading) relates]

Before becoming involved in pro-life advocacy, Pelletier worked as a political consultant and served in the campaign of former Texas State Representative Mike Millsap.

Pelletier and his wife, Mary Patricia (Pat), were married 46 years and are parishioners at St. Patrick Cathedral. They raised five children, Lisa, Jennifer, Charlie, Jimmy, and John and have 14 grandchildren.

———–End Quote———-

A life well lived. An inspiration to many.  A man who made a difference. I have to wonder whether his willing offering up of his sufferings made him such an effective pro-life warrior, able to get so many saves. The world would be a far better place with a lot more men like that around, which is to say, good Catholic men.

Requiescat in pace, Capt. Pelletier.  Please pray for the repose of his soul.

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Nativity scene in heavily Muslim Brussels has to be kept behind bars to prevent vandalism January 18, 2016

Posted by Tantumblogo in Basics, disaster, disconcerting, episcopate, error, foolishness, Immigration, paganism, Revolution, scandals, secularism, suicide.
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Reader JB (from Spain!) sent me the following pics of a famous Nativity Scene from Grand Place in Brussels that has to be kept behind a heavy iron grate and another separate fence to keep the figures of Our Lady, Lord, St. Joseph and others from being vandalized by musloid aggressors.

The reader relates that attacks are frequent in Brussels as the city population is now 25% muslim and half of all babies born there are, as well.

The first pic is sort of a postcard view of the Nativity Scene in the past, the other shows the scene from the Year of Our Lord two thousand and fifteen:

Recent Photos The Commons Galleries World Map App Garden Camera Finder ___

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When I saw this, my mind immediately lept – for some reason – to something I had not thought about in years.  That something is Kenneth Clark’s 13 part BBC documentary on civilization, and especially the first episode, wherein he relates how the ancient world – the first European civilization fell, was subsumed in darkness, and then seemed poised to vanish forever. It was only, to use his phrase, by the skin of our teeth that European civilization was not only preserved, but a new and much greater one fostered. And who did that saving and fostering?  The Church.  He makes no bones about the fact that the European civilization is entirely owed to the efforts of the Roman Catholic Church.

But he relates something else, something more substantive for the point of view of my recent thinking.  Civilizations can fall.  They have in the past, and they will again.  Powerful civilizations are never destroyed from without, but from within.  As I believe Clark ably relates at ~7:30 in the video below, civilizations become exhausted.  Especially, the leadership becomes exhausted.  Eventually, decadence and decline creep in to such a degree that generations are raised that no longer know what made the civilization tick, what held it together, what made it exist in the first place, and many in those generations – especially among the elites – even begin to war against those vital elements.

String together a few generations like that – and we’ve had them, at least among a large percentage of our population – and you eventually get to a point where a sufficient number (I don’t know what that is) actually begin to have a sort of death wish towards their own culture. They begin to loathe and revile it, because they don’t understand it.  Or they hate it because they know the souls who created it are far beyond them, and yet they believe they are the bestest, smartest, most awesomest people ever, and they resent that some backwards religious hicks could create this awesome organism and yet they know that they themselves could not.  Whatever the reason, you get to a point where many among that class that produces most political and cultural leaders begin, consciously or not, maliciously or not, to work for the civilization’s destruction, to yearn for the end.

I think that is why Western leaders, especially European leaders, have almost universally (I know the few exceptions) accepted this absolutely insane belief that they should allow in millions of hostile, hateful, predatory muslim men.  This in spite of almost every conceivable bit of evidence and the experience of millions of their own citizens.  They are flooding their own somnolent culture with a vigorous, if totally hostile, new population.  The parallels to the end of the Roman Empire are simply too stunning to ignore – the situations are, in fact, almost identical.  And ideologically, economically, militarily, and culturally exhausted civilization of very great wealth is sort of aging into nothingness.  Seemingly out a desire to be euthanized (just as they’ve literally done to their own parents), the Euro-leaders desire the hasten the end by flooding their countries with barbarians.

Overwrought?  Going too far?  I think not.  I think that’s just about exactly where we’re at – it’s, say, AD 390.  There has been no shattering Battle of Adrianople to presage the collapse of Roman power, Rome has not been sacked, but the barbarians are everywhere in the empire and no one seems to know much want to do about it.

Pretty good video below.  In fact, watch the whole thing, if you have time. While the barbarians ended Roman power in the West, they did not end the civilization.  It took the muslims to bring on the dark ages:

PS – There are nuances, of course.  For example, the ancient civilization was preserved in the Byzantine Empire until at least the 12th century or so, at least in its major points.

Recession (depression?) worse than ’08 coming? January 18, 2016

Posted by Tantumblogo in Basics, disaster, error, foolishness, General Catholic, horror, It's all about the $$$, Revolution, sadness, secularism, self-serving, Society.
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The other day, I expressed some hopeful views that the low price of oil would lead to an overall invigorated economy (even while some areas like Texas dependent on oil production would suffer).  Historically, low oil prices have almost invariably led to economic boom times.

But, we do not live in normal times.  Never has government, business, or personal debt been so high.  Never has government so artificially sustained what paltry economic “growth” there has been with such enormous measures.  That is to say, there is very little government can do to rectify an economic downturn (and probably much less gov’t should do).

That’s the thinking in the article below from a bearish economist at CNBC.  Given China’s economic crisis and the beating the markets have taken over the past few weeks, you certainly won’t find me arguing against his prognostication:

The S&P 500 has begun 2016 with its worst performance ever. This has prompted Wall Street apologists to come out in full force and try to explain why the chaos in global currencies and equities will not be a repeat of 2008. Nor do they want investors to believe this environment is commensurate with the dot-com bubble bursting. They claim the current turmoil in China is not even comparable to the 1997 Asian debt crisis.

Indeed, the unscrupulous individuals that dominate financial institutions and governments seldom predict a down-tick on Wall Street, so don’t expect them to warn of the impending global recession and market mayhem……

……..this inevitable, and by all accounts brutal upcoming recession, will coincide with two unprecedented and extremely dangerous conditions that should make the next downturn worse than 2008. [Did we ever even leave a recession?  I know what the Obama administration says, but I don’t trust them or their statistics at all. I think much of the country has remained in relatively flat growth ever since 2007.

First, the Fed will not be able to lower interest rates and provide any debt-service relief for the economy. In the wake of the Great Recession, former Fed Chair Ben Bernanke took the overnight interbank lending rate down to zero percent from 5.25 percent and printed $3.7 trillion. The Fed bought longer-term debt in order to push mortgages and nearly every other form of debt to record lows. [And left the US economy fundamentally destablized as a result.  That Bernanke may have been hoodwinked by shyster hedge fund managers to allow them to keep their 8-9 figure bonuses I’ll just gloss over for now]

The best the Fed can do now is to take away its 0.25 percent rate hike made in December.

Second, the federal government increased the amount of publicly-traded debt by $8.5 trillion (an increase of 170 percent), and ran $1.5 trillion deficits to try to boost consumption through transfer payments. Another such ramp up in deficits and debt, which are a normal function of recessions after revenue collapses, would cause an interest-rate spike that would turn this next recession into a devastating depression.

It is my belief that, in order to avoid the surging cost of debt-service payments on both the public and private-sector level, the Fed will feel compelled to launch a massive and unlimited round of bond purchases. However, not only are interest rates already at historic lows, but faith in the ability of central banks to provide sustainable GDP growth will have already been destroyed, given their failed eight-year experiment in QE.

Therefore, the ability of government to save the markets and the economy this time around will be extremely difficult, if not impossible. Look for chaos in currency, bond and equity markets on an international scale throughout 2016. Indeed, it already has begun.

It’s past time to find safe havens.  I did late last  year.  Not that the options are all that great.

There is an argument to be made that the incredible growth in prosperity the world has seen since the late 1700s is ultimately unsustainable and quite possibly unnatural.  For most of human history growth in wealth and productivity has been very slow.  There have been a few exceptions – the ancient Mediterranean world from about 200 BC to AD 200, China over roughly a similar period – where wealth accumulated very quickly (along with technological development and gains in productivity), and then followed by a period of reversal and long stagnation.  Birth rate (and infant survival) was a key factor in both the growth and the decline.

I wonder about this (in very brief form) because I have had the sense for a while that we may be looking at a very long period of technological, economic, and cultural stagnation if not outright reversal.  This is all grounded in the worldwide collapse in birthrate and the moral enervation of the West (the world’s leading culture), to the degree that many leaders seem to long for the barbarians to come and finish them off.

This is all very speculative and I certainly don’t have a lot of facts in support of my claim, it’s just a vague but growing sense I’ve had for some time. But I doubt I’m alone, given the explosion of “prepping” and similar trends.

Gold and (productive) land are probably some things very much worth having on hand.

Pope Francis casts out Saint Paul, St. Vincent of Lerins, basically all Church Fathers… January 18, 2016

Posted by Tantumblogo in Bible, catachesis, disaster, episcopate, error, foolishness, General Catholic, Papa, persecution, Revolution, scandals, secularism, self-serving, Society, the struggle for the Church, unbelievable BS.
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……in a stunning rant given at Casa Santa Martha today.  He cites what I am sure is meant to be traditional, observant (or “fundamentalist”) Christians as rebellious idolaters guilty of divination and being possessed of a closed, self-serving heart (that means you).  In so doing, he, intentionally or no, contradicts and rhetorically casts out such figures as St. Paul (see Galations i:8), St. Vincent of Lerins (Keep the deposit of Faith whole and entire, which has been entrusted to you, not that which you yourself have devised……), and virtually every great Saint and Church Father.  It’s a declaration of revolution, a revolution this Pope arrogates to believe stems from the Holy Spirit, rather than his own warped ideology (emphasis in original, my comments):

Christians who stop at “it’s always been done that way” have hearts closed to the surprises of the Holy Spirit. They are idolaters and rebels will never arrive at the fullness of the truth. That was the message of Pope Francis at Mass on Monday morning at the chapel in the Casa Santa Marta.

In the first reading, Saul was rejected by God as King of Israel because he disobeyed, preferring to listen to the people rather than the will of God. The people, after a victory in battle, wanted to offer a sacrifice of the best animals to God, because, he said, “it’s always been done that way.” [Today’s reading is I Sam xv:16-23 in the Novus Ordo.  I have literally ZERO idea how Pope Francis has come up with this explanation for this passage, Saul was not punished for sparing the king of the Amelekites, whom God had ordered killed, and for setting aside the best of their cattle for his own plunder, instead of offering that for sacrifice.  It had nothing to do with tradition, or things being done a certain way, but because Saul disobeyed a direct command of God.  Would that Pope Francis would consider his fate a bit more with respect to himself]  But God, this time, did not want that. The prophet Samuel rebuked Saul: “Does the Lord so delight in burnt offerings and sacrifices as in obedience to the command of the Lord?” Jesus teaches us the same thing in the Gospel, the Pope explained. When the doctors of the law criticized Him because His disciples did not fast “as had always been done,” Jesus responded with these examples from daily life: “No one sews a piece of unshrunken cloth on an old cloak. If he does, its fullness pulls away, the new from the old, and the tear gets worse. Likewise, no one pours new wine into old wineskins. Otherwise, the wine will burst the skins, and both the wine and the skins are ruined. Rather, new wine is poured into fresh wineskins.” [Once again, this is a false analysis.  The Pharisees would criticize Jesus no matter what – fasting, not fasting, He would be pointed out for failures no matter what He did, because the Pharisees were against Him at this point. Yes, Christ is also saying that there is a New Law coming, because the old one had grown corrupt and pro forma, with the outside performance of the works of the Law no longer signifying a changed heart.  But this bit of Gospel is relied heavily upon progressives to find in Christ justification for their revolutionary intent.]

“What does this mean? That He changes the law? No! That the law is at the service of man, who is at the service of God – and so man ought to have an open heart. ‘It’s always been done this way’ is a closed heart, and Jesus tells us, ‘I will send you the Holy Spirit and He will lead you into the fullness of truth.’ If you have a heart closed to the newness of the Spirit, you will never reach the full truth. And your Christian life will be a half-and-half life, a patched life, mended with new things, but on a structure that is not open to the voice of the Lord—a closed heart, so that you are not able to change others.” [Now he is conflating simple discipline with Doctrine. It is one thing to change exterior practices that have no impact on the Truth, and solemnly defined Doctrines that have been held since Christ walked the earth.  We know this because Pope Francis has attacked not just disciplines, but hard doctrines. But progressives tend, for their own ideological convenience, to find very few actual Dogmas/Doctrines and just a whole bunch of discipline that can be forever altered.  This is a tenet inherited directly from modernism]

This, the Pope emphasized, was the sin of Saul, for which he was rejected. [No, he was rejected for not killing the Ameekite king Agog] “It is the sin of so many Christians who cling to what has always been done and who do not allow others to change. And they end up with half a life, [a life that is] patched, mended, meaningless.” The sin, he said, “is a closed heart,” that “does not hear the voice of the Lord, that is not open to the newness of the Lord, to the Spirit that always surprises us.” This rebellion, says Samuel, is “the sin of divination,” and obstinacy is the sin of idolatry:

“Christians who obstinately maintain ‘it’s always been done this way,’ this is the path, this is the street—they sin: the sin of divination. It’s as if they went about by guessing: ‘What has been said and what doesn’t change is what’s important; what I hear—from myself and my closed heart—more than the Word of the Lord.’Obstinacy is also the sin of idolatry: the Christian who is obstinate sins! The sin of idolatry. ‘And what is the way, Father?’ Open the heart to the Holy Spirit, discern what is the will of God.” [Which just happens to amazingly correlate with the progressive-leftist program!  The god of political expedience is the one being honored here]

Pope Francis noted that in Jesus’ time, good Israelites were in the habit of fasting. “But there is another reality,” he said. “There is the Holy Spirit who leads us into the full truth. And for this reason he needs an open heart, a heart that will not stubbornly remain in the sin of idolatry of oneself,” imagining that my own opinion is more important than the surprise of the Holy Spirit. [What’s that line about those who twist Scripture to their own destruction?]

“This is the message the Church gives us today. This is what Jesus says so forcefully: ‘New wine in new wineskins.’ Habits must be renewed in the newness of the Spirit, in the surprises of God. May the Lord grant us the grace of an open heart, of a heart open to the voice of the Spirit, which knows how to discern what should not change, because it is fundamental, from what should change in order to be able to receive the newness of the Spirit.”

And so all those Saints, too many to list, who said “Don’t change one jot or tittle from what I have passed onto you, just as I have held all that I received as so precious and unchangeable” were just a bunch of hard-hearted close-minded Pelagian idolaters.

Gotcha.

Look, there are certainly many aspects of the Church that have changed over the centuries.  No one says everything must remain exactly as it was in 1962 or 1898 or 1214 or whatever.

But that’s not what’s been going on in this pontificate.  We’re not talking about some detail changes around the edges. We’re talking about a full-court press to almost totally redefine the Church along worldly progressive lines, and Doctrine has definitely been put in play on many fronts.

I’ll just note once again that some of the few souls Francis feels are worthy of judging, and quite harshly (contra his stand on sodomites in the Church), are those Catholics most rooted in the Faith and most zealous for the Truth.  We’re lumped in with the mafiosos, “polluters,” arms manufacturers, and profiteers as the only evil people in the world.

I don’t say that because it hurts my wittle feewings, but because of what it reveals about the man.  It is not insignificant.

Look, I know at this point those with eyes to see know just exactly what this pontiff is about.  If you read The Collaborator, I think Mitchell Hadley nailed this pontiff precisely.  That’s what he is.  He is so ideological that he radically misconstrues even easy to understand sections of Scripture because everything must always hammer in the direction of his ideology, even when the supporting “evidence” makes no sense.

At this point I’m just basically down to begging God to have mercy on His Church and relieve us of this chastisement. If it weren’t for his ability to wreak such havoc, I’d ignore him entirely.

More on that in a bit.