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Pro-sodomy New Ways Ministry loves Cupich’s sleight of hand on Ephesians 5 August 26, 2015

Posted by Tantumblogo in abdication of duty, Basics, different religion, disaster, episcopate, error, foolishness, General Catholic, horror, paganism, Papa, scandals, secularism, self-serving, sexual depravity, SOD, the struggle for the Church.
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I’m sure most readers are aware that the radical pro-perversion organization New Ways Ministry – condemned repeatedly by the Vatican and CDF under John Paul II and Pope Benedict, including the forced laicization of one of its founders and numerous interventions against another – has long been a beacon of heresy and support for immorality under the guise of a false charity.  Given that, it is damning with faint praise when they issue a giddy report on Archbishop Blaise Cupich’s recent homily endorsing the progressive faction at the upcoming Synod.  I guess we shouldn’t be surprised by that, Cupich has revealed himself to be a thoroughly progressive man and one frequently at odds with the constant belief and practice of the Faith.

What I find particularly egregious and disturbing in this most recent episode is the abuse of Scripture these characters always deploy to make their erroneous points (I am not linking to a bad site, you can find it if you want):

Preaching on Ephesians 5, a troubling text  [Why is that “troubing?”  It wasn’t troubling for the first 1900+ years of Christianity, why is it suddenly troubling now?  What they really mean is, this is a text we find inconvenient and thus reject.]  given its exhortation that “wives be submissive to your husbands,” Cupich said the text is actually quite subversive because it exhorts that husbands to be subordinate to their wives as well. This mutual submission between spouses is a teaching the early Church “would have found quite astonishing, if not revolutionary.” [Based on what evidence, other than the self-serving opinion of a dedicated revolutionary?] The archbishop explained:

Christ was doing something utterly new in the human family, changing how people understand their relationships with each other as family. With the upcoming synod, it is clear that the Holy Father is calling the Church to examine our categories of expression about what we believe and be open to new avenues and creativity when it comes to accompanying families. All of this has much to say to us in Chicago, that we not settle for solutions that no longer work, expressions that no longer inspire and ways of working that stifle creativity and collaboration.”

Mind what he’s saying: traditional family arrangements of husband, wife, and children “no longer work” and “no longer inspire” but “stifle creativity and collaboration.”  The Church can’t possibly call people to adhere to the family as always understood because, having not taught people to live according to this constant belief for decades, most bishops are now collectively throwing up their hands and declaring it an impossible standard to meet.

But notice the rhetorical sleight of hand: even if we take at face value all of Cupich’s claims, he works in a subtle reverse of logic upon which his entire point depends.  OK, let’s say Christ was doing something “utterly new with the human family, etc.”   in the early Church, that “new paradigm” became the accepted standard for all Christendom (treating women with more respect, making husband-wife relations more equal, whatever) and was the bedrock of Catholic moral teaching for 1900+ years. But note, this is because it was the implementation of something that was divinely revealed!  What he is proposing now is the opposite, to allow the culture to dictate to the Church what is an acceptable arrangement for the family, and for the Church to bend to this new, incredibly compromised standard. It is the exact opposite of what happened in the early Church, where revelation worked a revolution on society (again, granting him his point) – what he proposes is to have society work a revolution on revelation!  Do you see how he is twisting his rhetoric there most cleverly, if diabolically?

Also note, this was not just any homily, this was a significant salvo being fired in service of the progressive faction that seeks to destroy the entire moral edifice of the Faith:

Cupich was preaching in Holy Name Cathedral the at Mass for Investment of the Pallium. where Apostolic Nuncio Archbishop Carlo Viganó presented the Chicago archbishop with the pallium, a small woolen stole worn metropolitan archbishops to signify their unity with the papacy. This pallium Mass was the first in a new model of investiture instituted by Pope Francis whereby archbishops receive the vestment in their local archdiocese rather than in Rome, reported Michael O’Loughlin of Crux. This is part of Pope Francis’ attempts to decentralize church power and affirm local communities’ participation. [Only overturning centuries of tradition in the process, but to make a modernist omelette, some eggs will be broken]

Much of the homily centered around the papacy however, presenting messages of Pope Francis by citing both Evangelii Gaudium and Laudato Si. In my view, what Cupich was really doing was calling the archdiocese to be a truly catholic church that is “home for all” where all are welcome. [This is a radically new interpretation of “Catholic,” which never in the history of the Church meant “every living soul,” but those who submit to the Doctrine of the Faith.] Citing Pope John XXIII, the archbishop told those at Mass:

“He called the entire Church to a fresh appreciation of the ancient teaching of the medicine of mercy in an era when many in the Church preferred the narrow path of severity and condemnation. [B as in B, S as in S.  Even in the late 50s standards of doctrinal integrity had severely eroded. The “severe condemnatory” Catholic priest was always infinitely more a figment of progressive fever dreams than reality] .It is the pope’s ministry that draws us out of a narrow provincial view that reduces our experience of Church to just what is happening in my parish, my diocese, my country. [A hilarious claim regarding this most provincial of pontiffs] . . .[The pope in his travels] introduces us to our brothers and sisters in places we never visited, reminding us of what it means to be Catholic, a Church whose universality must be reflected in every particular Church.” [This is a most revolutionary sermon.  It’s not a homily, it’s a sermon, departing far from merely explicating on the Scripture readings.  This is a declaration of a progressive-modernist viewpoint.  Note what he is saying, that JPII’s and Benedict’s massive and novel travels did not “introduce us” to others, it was only when the great progressive paragon came on the scene that the Church came to be enlightened. EVEN MORE SIGNIFICANTLY, he appears to be setting up a dichotomy between “particular Churches” and the Church, whether that means sects or local dioceses or both, I’m uncertain.]

Cupich’s words are worth noting not only for the message given to the congregation gathered, including twenty bishops, but for their broader significance given this church leader’s rising significance. He was Pope Francis’ first major episcopal appointment in the United States, coming with a largely positive record on LGBT issues that was further confirmed when he said last yearon CBS’ “Face the Nation” program that all families deserve legal protection

Yet, Cupich’s remarks are forward looking because he is expected to be appointed a special delegate to the Synod and his weight as a voice in the American Church will only grow…….

…..As for the October synod, Pope Francis is hoping for a miracle, and his appointments are raising the stakes that something positive for LGBT families might just happen.[Only at the cost of a vast number of souls, all true families, and the moral doctrine of the Church.  To a progressive, that’s nothing for another great advance in the great liberation of mankind from God]  Judging from Cupich’s words, he is open to the Spirit’s guidance and to new ways of accompanying families. [Once again, progressives pit the Holy Ghost against Himself, positively contradicting what He has revealed through Sacred Scripture. What a farce.] He commented on the Risen Christ “always doing something new” before quoting Evangelii Gaudium:

“Jesus can always break through the dull categories with which we would enclose him, and he constantly amazes us with his divine creativity.[So Cupich, too, sees no problem with Christ contradicting Himself, of even Sacred Dogmas having to change in the service of “mercy” and “creativity,” which are nothing but euphemisms for revolutionary doctrinal change.  Thus, he is a MODERNIST, one who believes there are no constant Truths but only the most ephemeral, temporary, personal ones] . .[to the point that] new avenues arise, new paths of creativity open up, with different forms of expression, more eloquent signs, and words with new meaning for today’s world.”

Two words sum this guy up: different religion.

If Archbishop Cupich, whose depraved radicalism becomes more apparent every day, is indeed appointed to the Ordinary Synod by direct intervention of Pope Francis, it will be a very telling moment, will it not. It would reveal even more clearly where this pope’s sympathies lie, and the course he desires the Sin-nod to take.  Of course, such has already been made quite plain by the appointment of such soulless characters as Daneels and Bonny.  In truth, the real miracle will be if the perennial Doctrine of the Faith is not completely shredded at this Synod.

I don’t think it any exaggeration to state that this Synod and the encyclical which will follow represent the greatest threat to the doctrinal integrity of the Church since Vatican II.  We must conclude that after the accumulated evidence of 50 years of ruin directly attributable to the implementation of the “spirit of the Council” that the men driving this new push towards revolution simply want to see the Church destroyed or at least turned into  a completely ineffectual NGO.  Please pray and do penance in the weeks leading up to the Synod most fervently.  Pray especially for true shepherds among priests and bishops to emerge not only to oppose this nightmare but also to properly catechize souls in the real Doctrine of the Faith.

Another survey, another confirmation of the near-total failure of catechesis in this country August 25, 2015

Posted by Tantumblogo in abdication of duty, Basics, different religion, error, foolishness, General Catholic, horror, It's all about the $$$, paganism, persecution, scandals, secularism, self-serving, sickness, Society, the struggle for the Church.
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I don’t know if it is even meaningful to report this stuff anymore.  Another survey out from yet another group shows that self-identified American Catholics hold views utterly indistinguishable on matters of grave moral import from the general population.  A majority of self-described Catholics – which includes the nearly half who haven’t darkened the door of a Church in years if not decades – thinks abortion should be legal in most or all cases, right along with the overall population.  A strong majority favors pseudo-sodo-marriage.  I’m sure if they asked about contraception a whopping majority would be in favor of that, too.

Acceptance of any of these items constitutes such a departure from the Faith revealed by Jesus Christ through His Church that it places the holder outside communion with the Church.  Their eternal salvation is in the gravest jeopardy and they do not have sanctifying grace within them.  Almost all responders are aware of the Church’s Doctrine on these matters.  They simply reject it out of hand.

The loss of each individual soul is a tragedy of infinite proportions.  And yet, as Our Lady of Fatima said to Lucia and the other children, souls today fall into hell like so many snowflakes.  Tragically, unbelievably given the mission of the Church, many of these souls are being actively encouraged in their fall by men who have betrayed their calling to be shepherds and spiritual fathers for souls.  The accounting these men will face will be a most horrible one.  Pray for them.

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51% of Catholics favor abortion in most or all cases.  60% favor pseudo-sodo-marriage.  A ginormous 73% think the US government “needs to do more to address the issue of climate change.”  72% think the trillions already spent on wealth transfers from more productive to less productive sectors of the economy are insufficient.

American Catholics are, thus, thoroughgoing progressives far more informed by the platform of the democrat party than they are the Doctrine of the Faith.

The abortion matter really steams me, there isn’t a soul alive with an IQ above 70 who doesn’t know what the Church believes regarding abortion, nor that abortion, stripped of all the euphemisms, involves murdering perfectly innocent babies.  It is also about the only moral issue on which there has been at least some catechesis at the parish level, but apparently not enough, since most American katholycs think it should remain legal.

Some more disturbing data, read this and see if you can keep your stomach from churning:

Catholics also do not differ markedly from the American public on the issue of same-sex marriage. A majority (55%) of Americans and six in ten (60%) Catholics favor allowing gay and lesbian couples to marry legally. Notably, roughly equal numbers of white Catholics (59%) and non-white Catholics (61%) support same-sex marriage. [No, Catholics actually favor pseudo-sodo-marriage substantially more than the general population.  5% is not a trifling amount.  Compared with believing protestants, the comparison is even more stark, and reveals the total failure to effectively catechize souls on this very important matter.  But it gets much, much worse….]

Most Catholics also do not believe same-sex marriage violates their basic religious principles and commitments. A majority (53%) of Catholics disagree that same-sex marriage goes against their religious beliefs, while 42% agree. However, white Catholics are far more divided than non-white Catholics. Nearly half (45%) of white Catholics believe gay marriage goes against their religious beliefs, compared to only about one-third (35%) of non-white Catholics. [If you read the data above, you will find that self-described Hispanic Catholics are as progressive as they come, holding progressive opinions by huge margins on all matters but abortion.  Continued mass immigration from Hispanic lands means making the United States into a much, much more socialistic and left-wing country, with all the implications for the destruction of morality, the good of souls, etc]

An even greater share (76%) of Catholics favor laws that would protect gay, lesbian, bisexual, and transgender people against discrimination. Roughly one in five (21%) Catholics oppose this policy. [Not only are most katholycs progressive, they’re dumber than a box of rocks]

Notably, relatively few Catholics support a broad religious liberty exemption to nondiscrimination laws. Roughly two-thirds (65%) of Catholics oppose a policy that would allow small business owners to refuse products or services to gay and lesbian people, even if doing so goes against their religious beliefs. Twenty-eight percent of Catholics support such religious liberty exemptions. Also of note, a majority (58%) of Catholics who attend religious services at least weekly and a slim majority (51%) of Republican Catholics also oppose allowing small business owners to refuse services to gay and lesbian people on religious grounds. 

I’ve written many times that we would be tortured by self-described Catholics being our worst persecutors, even escorting pious souls to their martyrdom with hoots and jeers.  Believe me, now?  A HUGE majority (58% is huge) of those who assist at Mass weekly (probably most of them quite aged) oppose religious exemptions from servicing sodomites!  Keep praying to your god the TV, Amchurch katholycs!

One more bit, which provides some background for the bishop’s strenuous efforts in favor of continued, unconstrained Hispanic illegal immigration to this country:

Currently, roughly six in ten (59%) Catholics are white non-Hispanic, more than one-third (34%) identify as Hispanic, and seven percent identify as some other race or as mixed race. The ongoing ethnic transformation of the Catholic Church can also be seen in the stark ethnic differences among U.S. Catholics by age. Catholic seniors (age 65 and over) are roughly twice as likely as young Catholics (age 18-29) to be white (79% vs. 40%, respectively). And these younger Catholics—at 49% Hispanic—are on the cusp of becoming majority Hispanic.

So the Church, such as it is, will become only more progressive with time as the Hispanic portion of the Church increases.

Taking in all the above, it appears the average Amchurch katholyc wants money money money and to believe whatever the mass media tells them to believe, even to the point of seeing their co-religionists persecuted for accepting the constant belief and practice of the Faith.

Poor lost souls!  They must have fooled themselves – or allowed themselves to be fooled – into believing that no one goes to hell this side of Stalin or Hitler!  They wouldn’t know a Bible verse from Shakespeare.  Their priests and bishops have failed them to a degree that beggars the imagination. This Church is headed for a most severe reckoning, but we should rejoice if we have the Grace to remain faithful and suffer persecution in imitation of our Blessed Lord.

If we take the survey data above, and accept the survey’s finding that 22% of Americans self-identify as Catholic, also taking into account the fact that there is probably a lot of overlap between those holding heretical views on various matters but that the overlap is not total, I ask…….are there even 3 million actual believing Catholics in these United States, people who accept all the Doctrine of the Faith?

Ecumenical failure: Waldensians rebuke Pope Francis’ outreach, refuse to apologize August 25, 2015

Posted by Tantumblogo in Basics, different religion, disaster, Ecumenism, episcopate, error, General Catholic, horror, Papa, persecution, scandals, secularism, self-serving, Society, the struggle for the Church.
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How many times has this occurred in the past?  How many times has a major Church leader, even a Pope, appeared on bended knee before some sect or group of schismatics, beating his breast over the ostensible past sins of the Church, only to have the other side refuse to acknowledge their own sins?  This is one of the aspects of post-conciliar “ecumenism” that most frustrates pious souls, the fact that it always seems to be the Church apologizing, even groveling, with very little reciprocity from the other side, whoever that may be.

Readers will likely recall that Pope Francis issued a fulsome apology to the tiny Waldensian sect in Turin earlier this year.  After carefully considering the matter for months, and even convoking a synod to deliberate the matter, the Waldensians have their response, and it looks a lot to me like an upturned middle phalanx (my emphasis and comments):

Pope Francis had reached out his hand to Turin’s Waldensians during his visit last June. He made controversial gestures to emphasize his intention and asked the Waldensians’ forgiveness  from injustice done by Catholics.  Now the Waldensians have given the pope a response. A specially convened Waldensian Synod, which meets until Friday in Turin, rejected the outstretched hand of the Pope and declared themselves unable to grant forgiveness.Vatican Insider talks about an amazing “coldness” toward the Pope…….………The relationship between Waldensians and Catholics is one of deep conflict. On both sides there were atrocities mainly during  the Middle Ages and the early modern period. Even in the mid-19th century the  Waldensians sought the life of  St. John Bosco.

Pope Francis made the unilateral first step towards reconciliation and asked the Waldensian forgiveness for the injustice committed by Catholics. The Pope had said: “On behalf of the Catholic Church, I ask you for forgiveness for the unchristian and even inhuman attitudes and actions, which we have done to you  throughout history.  In the name of the Lord Jesus Christ, forgive us! ” [My point of view is a bit different: if the Church is the Church, and truly necessary for salvation, sects and other religions who lure souls away to a much greater likelihood of eternal damnation must be opposed vigorously.  If the secular power sees in these sects grave threats to souls and to the social order, it is within their remit to act as prudence and justice dictate.  IOW, what is PF apologizing for, but the zeal of former generations for the good of souls?]

The Moderator of the Waldensian Table, Pastor Eugenio Bernardini, responded: “The Pope has overcome a wall that was built eight centuries ago when our church was accused of heresy and excommunicated by the Roman church.” The pope did not argue. [And for good reason, since this sect holds numerous heretical beliefs and has placed itself outside Communion with the Church. Would that we had such clarity today!]

To underline his readiness, the Pope kissed a Waldensian Bible which was presented to him by Waldensian pastors. It was a gesture that caused some criticism on the Catholic side………

……..The outstretched hand of the Pope sparked heated discussions within the Waldensian community. Finally, a  Waldensian synod was specially convened to respond to the Pope on his request for forgiveness. The Synod will meet until Friday in Torre Pellice for Turin. The answer is now clear and is negative. “We’re moving, but we can not forgive.”  The decision of the Waldensian Synod can be summarized with these words.

In an official letter to the Pope the Synod declared: “Dear Brother in Christ Jesus, the Synod of the Evangelical Waldensian Church accepts with deep respect and not without emotion, your apology expressed on behalf of your church asking for forgiveness for what you have indeed even described as ‘unchristian, even inhuman attitudes and actions’ that have been taken in the past against our mothers and fathers,” But then this is  followed by a big “but” of the  Waldensians. This new situation does not allow us, to step in the place of those who testified with their blood or the other Protestants suffering for their  faith, and to forgive you. ” [So who has the greater zeal?  Who is willing to offend men for the sake of their beliefs in this sordid exchange?  It garners the applause of the world (and, I would think, its master) when popes apologize for alleged past sins of the Church.  But does it work any good for souls?]

This message, rejecting the outstretched hand of the Pope, was decided on Monday by the 180 people gathered at the Waldensian Synod.

……this formalist position can not hide the fact that the Waldensians in reality do not want to approach the Catholic Church. Because this could have been expressed differently, despite the question of direct forgiveness. [and Kenneth Copeland and other shyster TV evangelists don’t want to convert, either, but they will accept the outstretched hand of the Pope most eagerly, since they know the Pope’s outreach will lead to many Catholics falling into their sects and filling their already rich coffers.

The Waldensian Synod for their  part couldn’t find a word of apology for the wrongs committed by Waldensians against the Catholic Church and the Catholics [of course note. And the Orthodox and Lutherans and others have generally made any apology they’ve offered far more contingent and less self-effacing than have their Catholic counterparts, who obviously, wholeheartedly disavow the behavior of their forefathers – many of them spiritual giants – who proceeded them.]

As a convert to the Faith, the truths of which I have become utterly convinced as an adult after much study, it is heart-rending for me to see these kinds of apologies.  Having been outside the Church for most of my life, I can understand well the effect such words have on those sects receiving the apologia. They tell the sect: you were right all along, look at even their leader coming to you now admitting their folly, you’re in exactly the right place.  How many souls have been prevented from finding the Truth of Jesus Christ in its wholeness and entirety by the misguided actions of ecumaniacs over the past several decades?  Is this factor even considered when pontiffs and others make these kinds of statements?  Do they not know they will be judged not just for the souls they lost, but also for the souls they prevented from responding to the call of Grace to enter the Church by their actions?

Ecumenism is the apotheosis of the progressive obsession with “equality” applied to ecclesiastical matters.  It is “unfair” and “cruel” for some men to have the Truth and others not, for some to be saved and for others not, therefore, we should drive the Church down to the lowest common denominator in the interest of worldly “fairness.”  And if a few billion souls have to fry in hell forever in the process, well, an omelette doesn’t get made without breaking a few billion eggs, does it?  Whenever you hear someone denigrating traditional/Catholic “elitism,” keep this in mind.

 

ISIS obliterates, desecrates 1600 year old Syrian monastery……. August 25, 2015

Posted by Tantumblogo in Basics, disaster, Ecumenism, General Catholic, horror, persecution, shocking, Society, Spiritual Warfare, unadulterated evil.
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……..and just for good measure, they dug up the ancient relics of Saint Elian and brutalized them, as well.  They also slaughtered the monks.

Is there a force on this planet more visibly satanic than militant islam and especially “ISIS?”

ISLAMIC STATE (ISIS) fighters have bulldozed a 1,600-year-old Christian monastery after abducting and reportedly slaughtering its inhabitants.

The twisted terror group today released a video showing its barbaric militants razing the ancient Mar Elian monastery to the ground, even digging up and desecrating the bones of a Christian saint.

There were reports that fighters had also kidnapped the monastery’s abbot, Father Jacques Mouraud and a church volunteer, Botros Hanna, who are both now feared dead.

Earlier this month ISIS abducted up to 250 Christians from the monastery and its surrounding villages, many of whom were women and children.

In the sick video the terrorists can be seen gleefully removing the remains of Saint Elian, after whom the monastery was named, from their ancient stone sarcophagus.

The church is said to have been built on the spot where Saint Elian died after he was killed by his father, a Roman officer, for refusing to denounce his faith.

It was a popular pilgrim site with Christians throughout the Middle East and housed Roman frescos which were amongst the oldest paintings in the region.

The monastery, near the Syrian city of Homs, had been renovated several times in recent years, including by Italian priest Paolo Dall’Oglio who was executed in Raqqa by ISIS forces in July 2013.

ISIS said that it bulldozed the church because it was dedicated to a God other than Allah. [So much, then, for “dhimmi” status and islam being tolerant of Christians and Jews?  In truth, this is what has happened everywhere particularly militant islam has gained suzerainty, dating back to the 600s]

The group has routinely kidnapped and executed Christians living in the Middle East as part of its ideological drive to create an Islamist caliphate…….

………ISIS has routinely destroyed and desecrated ancient monuments in lands it has captured in the Middle East.

The Islamist fanatics see many historical sites as blasphemous to their cause.

Earlier this year the extremists blew up the ancient city of Nimrud, in Iraq, whilst they also released a video of fighters smashing ancient statues in Mosul museum.

They are in truth opposed to all civilization, which is why islam, in spite of starting from a relatively high level of development, today features many of the most backwards, deliberately ignorant countries in the world.  In order to conduct their sick jihad, they have to import weapons from other less benighted places.  Islam has given very, very little to the world and has taken a very great deal.  It’s thoroughly un-Christian of me, I guess, but a part of me thinks the only way to deal with these people is like this:

Redwing Tewa 5 MT shot July 20, 1956, designed to be as dirty as possible. Almost all weapons effects from fission, ground burst for maximum fallout.  This was probably the dirtiest nuclear test the United States every conducted.  “Dirty” means maximum radiological effects.

With islam, it’s always war to the knife and knife to the hilt.  It always has been.  Either you must destroy them, or they will destroy you.  And now our first muslim president and a compliant Senate have seen fit to allow one of the most deranged islamist regimes to be armed with nuclear weapons.  I am increasingly convinced there will be another use of nuclear weapons in my lifetime, and that this time, it won’t be in ones or twos.  It’s going to be horrific.

Below, what the monastery used to look like, and images of its destruction:

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Atrocity against mankind: ISIS destroying ancient city of Palmyra August 24, 2015

Posted by Tantumblogo in Art and Architecture, disaster, error, General Catholic, history, horror, persecution, rank stupidity, Society, unadulterated evil.
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An ancient Roman temple to an admittedly hideous pagan god has reportedly been destroyed in the ruins of the ancient city of Palmyra, one of the best-preserved and most easily accessibly archaeological sites in the world.  As they did in the ruins of Nineveh, the murdering child rapists of ISIS are destroying priceless artifacts which are treasures of all mankind:

Islamic State militants on Sunday blew up the temple of Baal Shamin, one of the most important sites in Syria’s ancient city of Palmyra, said Maamoun Abdul Karim, the country’s antiquities chief.

The temple bombing would be the first time the insurgents, who control swathes of Syria and Iraq and captured Palmyra in May, damaged monumental Roman-era ruins.

“We have said repeatedly the next phase would be one of terrorising people and when they have time they will begin destroying temples,” Abdul Karim told Reuters.

“I am seeing Palmyra being destroyed in front of my eyes,” he added. “God help us in the days to come.”

A week ago, the militants beheaded Khaled Asaad, an 82-year-old scholar who worked for more than 50 years as head of antiquities in Palmyra, after detaining and interrogating him for over a month.

Before the city’s capture by Islamic State, Syrian officials said they moved hundreds of ancient statues to safe locations out of concern that the militants would destroy them.

In June, Islamic State blew up two ancient shrines in Palmyra that were not part of its Roman-era structures but which the militants regarded as pagan and sacrilegious.

The militants were also beginning excavation for gold and giving licenses for illicit excavation of the city’s treasures, Abdul Karim added.

The structure below is reputed to be the one that was destroyed. It was a temple to the satanic demon of fertility to which many ancient cultures sacrificed their living babies.  The Israeli state was sacked by God for falling into this unimaginable idolatry:

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But God has never commanded us to iconoclasm or even effacing the reminders of past satanic worship.  In fact, these places can serve a salient function in demonstrating how men have fallen in the past, and how careful we must be to not do similarly.  We are only preserved from such folly by cooperation with Grace.

Other threatened structures in Palmyra:

ISIL Explodes Ancient Temple at Syria’s Palmyra Ruins

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At present, major Christian historical sites like Krak de Chevaliers, a massive Crusader castle occupied by the Knights Hospitaller for 150 years in the 12th and 13th centuries has not fallen under ISIS control, but as the war continues to go badly for the Syrian government and anti-ISIS forces it is possible such structures could be threatened, as well.

Krak_des_Chevaliers_01

Krak de Chevaliers was damaged during fighting in 2013 and 2014.  The extent of the damage is unclear. What is clear is that if this priceless site falls into ISIS’ hands the damage will be much more severe.  Other great Crusader castles like Margat and Masyaf may be similarly threatened, but ISIS could conceivably give them a pass since they were conquered by islam long ago.  One never knows with these guys.  They are so crazed and full of blood-lust they are capable of anything at anytime.

Perhaps ISIS is the scourge God is sending to chastise the entire world for its cold-hearted indifference and rank immorality?  That, among a few other things, like looming economic implosion and possible societal breakdown.

Enjoy the 21st century!

Refuting the embarrassing USCCB puff-piece on Cuba August 21, 2015

Posted by Tantumblogo in abdication of duty, asshatery, Basics, episcopate, error, foolishness, General Catholic, horror, Papa, persecution, scandals, secularism, self-serving, sickness, Society, the struggle for the Church.
8 comments

Reader FM sent me a link to an article by the Catholic News Service – the official PR arm of the USCCB – on the ongoing normalization of relations between the United States and Cuber, which an earlier democrat called “that imprisoned island.”  Incredibly, the article repeatedly tries to claim that the Cuban economy is so pitiful, and the Church is so repressed, not because of a vicious, repressive communist kleptocracy (the Castros are reputedly worth hundreds of millions if not billions of dollars), but because of the 55 year old US economic embargo.

The U.S. trade embargo against Cuba turns 55 in October, and its effects are clear in the dilapidated buildings, scant food supply of Cuban stores and infrastructure around the island…….[No nuance. No mention of communism.  To the leftist who wrote this article, apparently completely ignorant of history, Cuba’s disastrous economic condition is due solely to the US economic boycott]

………”Certainly the conference (of bishops) in the United States, in conjunction with the Cuban bishops’ conference, for many years, has favored that kind of action, the lifting of the embargo,” Coll said. Such a move can bring about greater dialogue, commerce and contact with the Cuban people, their government, and foster human rights, freedom and democracy, just as it did in the similar landscape of Eastern Europe after the Berlin Wall fell, he said[This is a total rewrite of history.  What “fostered human rights, freedom, and democracy” after the Berlin Wall fell?  Why DID the wall fall?  BECAUSE THE COMMUNIST STATES HAD ALREADY IMPLODED!!! Sheesh how blindly ideological do you have to be!  The proper comparison is not the Eastern Europe, which had already thrown off the shackles of repression before relations were normalized, but with CHINA, and Vietnam fro that matter, where relations have been normalized with brutal authoritarian communist regimes, and that normalization has only helped further entrench those anti-Catholic governments in power.  The exact same will happen in Cuba, and the USCCB is rooting for it.]

“The more they were able to rely on commerce and engage in dialogue with the West, the more possible it became for their own societies to be able to open up to human rights advances and eventually to a move toward democracy rather than pulling away from the West,” Coll said. [Once again, this is inverting history.  The opening to the West prior to late 1989 was trivial and nascent, it did not involve full trade or completely normal relations until AFTER the Eastern European regimes had fallen or were in the process of imploding.  The communist regime in Cuba shows no sign of doing either]

……Even St. John Paul II, an ardent opponent of communism, favored lifting the sanctions.

“Embargoes,” he said while addressing a group of young people during his visit to Cuba in 1998, “are always deplorable because they hurt the most needy.” [Then why don’t you address how the Cuban regime embargoes the vast amount of wealth and aid they receive from other nations into their own pockets and maintaining themselves in power?  The Soviets poured billions into Cuba over 30 years but that did not help the populace at all, virtually all of it went to maintaining the regime in power. And mind you, while the US has had an embargo, Cuba has been free to trade with every European, South American, and North American nation.  The US is not so all powerful as to have condemned Cuba to grinding poverty single-handedly.  No, the communist regime has done that. The average Cuban today is must poorer than he was before the revolution, while the party elite live like kings.]

Any benefits that come from the historic thaw have the potential to affect more than just relations between Cuba and the U.S., Coll said.

“Cuba is a key that unlocks many other doors within Latin America,” said Coll. “You can think about the situation in Venezuela, for example … that’s related very much to what’s happening in Cuba.” [If you mean Venezuela is imitating Cuba’s disastrous descent into communism through leftist demagoguery, you’re absolutely right.  I don’t see how suddenly pretending Cuba is a wonderful, enlightened place is going to do anything to help Venezuela.]

Success with Cuba can lead to success addressing issues such as religious freedom, violence and poverty in other neighboring nations. And that’s very much an interest of Pope Francis but it’s also not an interest that began with him, Coll said.

“Sometimes in the press, and elsewhere, there’s a desire to talk about how Francis is a revolutionary and so different from other popes, but on Cuba policy and on many other issues, including even economic policy, I would argue that Francis is very much in the tradition of Benedict XVI, John Paul II, going back to Leo XIII, so this is a chain … it really is a pretty unbroken chain,” Coll said.

Please.  Leo XIII would have had nothing to do with Cuba so long as it remained communist and so nakedly anti-Catholic.  JPII went to Cuba and condemned the regime to its face.  Benedict XVI repeated the condemnation, though in a muted manner.  Is that what we’ll see from Pope Francis?  Or will he continue his theme of the people rising up to throw off the shackles of capitalist oppression?

Next post will examine just how socialist/communist regimes work, and how they must be opposed.

Meanwhile, the USCCB seems to have little concern for how this regime has all but destroyed the Faith in Cuba and continues to violently repress the few remaining Catholics.  It’s all our fault, somehow.

As FM said, what an absolute joke.

 

The current Republican party is hopelessly corrupt and unworthy of support August 20, 2015

Posted by Tantumblogo in abdication of duty, Abortion, Basics, contraception, disaster, error, foolishness, General Catholic, horror, scandals, self-serving, unbelievable BS.
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There, I said it.

As I’m sure most readers are aware, muslim President Obama has concluded a disastrous treaty with Iran, basically allowing that insanely hostile muslim state to pursue a nuclear weapon’s development program with very few limitations, in exchange for which all sanctions – persisting for decades – against the world’s number one sponsor of islamist terror will be lifted.  Hundreds of billions of dollars worth of frozen assets will be freed up, providing the regime both the with wealth it needs to remain in power, and excess cash with which to export death and destruction around the world.

But what most people do not know is that the Republican party, supposedly so opposed to his agenda, has taken positive steps to insure this treaty will pass into law.  Months ago, the Republicans working under Senator Bob Corker voted to change procedure regarding the passage of this treaty.  Instead of requiring a 2/3 majority as per regular senatorial procedure for a treaty, they changed it to a simply up/down vote.  Since Obama could veto the Senate Republican voting down of the treaty, and since a veto requires a 2/3 majority to overcome, what the Republicans in essence did was to let the democrats pass this treaty on a 1/3+1 minority vote!

So everything you have seen from the Republicans on this subject has been complete, 100% kabuki theater.  Or, more correctly, failure theater.  All the committee hearings, all the sturm and drang, all the serious faces at the long-prepared press conferences, all the rhetoric used on establishment Republican media like Fox News has been complete balderdash.  These men deliberately conspired with Obama months ago to make this treaty all but invincible in terms of up or down votes and it will become the law. And Iran will become a nuclear power, with a government that sees as its sacred mission the bringing about of an Armageddon that will lead to the exaltation of their satanic religion.

How the scam works:

Do you remember how Mitch McConnell schemed to increase the debt limit, while suckering conservatives with a claim that conservatives voted against it?

The scheme worked like this: Congress authorized the president to increase the debt limit on his authority. (Actually, we’re already at the stage of falsehood, because he wouldn’t be raising the debt limit on his own authority, but with the authority Congress had just voted him.)

Now, the deal also granted, supposedly, Congress the power to block the raising of the debt limit, by voting a “resolution of disapproval.”

But here’s the thing: The president can veto that.

Which is what he did, of course.

So the debt limit was raised in this way:

1. Republicans voted to give Obama the power to raise the debt limit. They didn’t take responsibility for this themselves; they just said Obama could do so, if he wanted.

2. But Republicans retain the right to “block” it, supposedly, with a vote of disapproval.

3. But which Obama can veto — which every Republican knows he will do.

4. McConnell, Corker, and all the other other con artists now get to claim they didn’t raise the debt limit. Heck, they even voted aResolution of Disapproval against it.

What they don’t tell you is that this had been designed from the start to pass the debt limit increase, with a fake Resolution of Disapproval voted on and vetoed, which had been planned from the start, so that they could lie and say they “voted against” the increase in the debt limit.

Well, Corker’s alleged “compromise” with the Democrats and Obama on the Iran “deal” plays exactly the same game with foreign policy.

This whole scam is about giving Obama exactly what he wants – a nuclear Iran – while allowing the Republicans to pretend they voted against it, when they didn’t they actually conspired to insure this treaty would be approved.

And now that what they schemed and planned to do for months is coming fully to fruition, McConnell “admits” it will be impossible to stop Obama’s Iran treaty from passing, but what he doesn’t say is that he and Corker and other squishes conspired to make this happen.

Even just a couple of years ago, I very strongly believed that there were crucial distinctions between the democrat and republican parties that made support for the latter crucial, at any level of government.  At the federal level in particular, I no longer believe that.  Even with historic majorities in both houses the Republicans have not done a single thing to slow down, let alone retrench, the progress of socialism and the sexular pagan agenda in this country.  In fact, ostensible Republicans like Justice Anthony Kennedy always seem to play the key role in assuring the next great leap downwards.  And Chief John Roberts has twisted himself, and the law, into pretzels to keep Obamacare constitutional, when it blatantly is not.

The point seems to be, the elite has interests that conflict with the vast majority of the base (not to mention the moral order), and both parties now exist solely to service that elite.  The elite likes Planned Barrenhood, so I doubt even this latest expose will lead to anything but a series of small headaches for them.  If Republicans cannot ever convince even one or two demonrats to switch to their side on any important issue, and yet 6 or 10 or 20 Republicans can always be found to switch to the democrats, what is the point?  They’ll never have a majority large enough to do anything to turn this nation around and stop the descent into amoral barbarism.

I’m sorry, the only thing the Republican party has been good for in the last 15 years is starting endless wars and getting more tax breaks for the very wealthy.  In the meantime they do a whole bunch of bad stuff.  That’s not enough to maintain my support.

7th Planned Butchery video claims baby’s brains harvested while heart still beating August 19, 2015

Posted by Tantumblogo in abdication of duty, Abortion, contraception, disaster, General Catholic, horror, It's all about the $$$, paganism, sadness, scandals, secularism, self-serving, sexual depravity, shocking, sickness, Society, unadulterated evil.
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You know eventually the Senate will be forced to vote again.  If what I hear is coming actually does, even the most crazed pro-aborts are going to be forced to turn on this organization, at least as a political expedient if not out of true conviction.  We’re still tipping icebergs here.

A new video produces evidence that Banned Parenthood and its partner companies in the baby murder and organ harvesting business routinely eviscerate fully alive babies outside the womb.  This is the kind of thing that sent Kermit Gosnell to prison for life:

 The video  features Holly O’Donnell, a licensed phlebotomist who unsuspectingly took a job as a “procurement technician” at the fetal tissue company and biotech start-up StemExpress in late 2012. That’s the company that acts as a middleman and purchases the body parts of aborted babies from Planned Parenthood to sell to research universities and other places. StemExpress was partnered with Planned Parenthood up until last week, when it quietly announced it ended its relationship with the abortion corporation.

The new video includes O’Donnell’s eyewitness narrative of the daily practice of fetal body parts harvesting in Planned Parenthood abortion clinics. She tells the harrowing story of harvesting an intact brain from a late-term male unborn baby whose heart was still beating after the abortion.

O’Donnell describes the harvesting, or “procurement,” of organs from a nearly intact late-term baby aborted at Planned Parenthood Mar Monte’s Alameda clinic in San Jose, California.

“‘I want to see something kind of cool,’” O’Donnell says her supervisor asked her. “And she just taps the heart, and it starts beating. And I’m sitting here and I’m looking at this fetus, and its heart is beating, and I don’t know what to think.”

The San Jose Planned Parenthood does abortions up to 20 weeks of pregnancy. Referring to the beating heart of the aborted fetus, O’Donnell remarks, “I don’t know if that constitutes it’s technically dead, or it’s alive.”…….. [I pray most fervently for the conversion of your reprobate heart]

……..The group also indicates StemExpress has been cited in published scientific literature as a source of fetal hearts used for Langendorff perfusion, which keeps a heart beating after it is excised from the body. [Would that not be evidence admissible in court?  Why has no one filed charges against StemExpress and PP?]

O’Donnell also tells how her StemExpress supervisor instructed her to cut through the face of the fetus in order to get the brain. [With the baby still alive.  There is no depth to the horrors to which men will sink when they reject God]

“I can’t even describe what that feels like,” she says.

The video also features recordings of Dr. Ben Van Handel, the Executive Director of Novogenix Laboratories, LLC, and also of Perrin Larton, Procurement Manager of Advanced Bioscience Resources, Inc. (ABR)…….

…..Van Handel admits, “There are times when after the procedure is done that the heart actually is still beating,” and Larton describes abortions she has seen where “the fetus was already in the vaginal canal whenever we put her in the stirrups, it just fell out.” [Well they can’t let all that valuable tissue go to waste just because the baby is alive and breathing!  Quick, bring the saw!]

………This newest expose’ video further confirms what Dr. Theresa Deisher, a world-renowned scientist in the field of stem cell research who holds patents after discovering adult stem cells in human hearts, said in a recent interview. Deisher helped the pro-life activists who spent three years recording undercover videos and capturing documents and information showing the Planned Parenthood abortion business selling aborted babies and their body parts.

She says she has reviewed the information the activists collected and she is making a shocking claim that Planned Parenthood may be keeping some babies alive after the abortion procedure in order to better collect their organs for harvesting — such as their hearts.

“Biomedical companies prefer gestational ages of greater than 20 weeks for heart muscle,” she adds. “This is from reading their publications; so, I have always suspected that the babies in some of these cases were alive until their hearts were cut out.” [Just a thought – you see Bill Maher and other deranged atheists proclaim how much “evil” religion has foisted on the world.  Give me a break, this latest PP scandal is exactly the kind of evil that godlessness provokes!  Only people totally cut off from Grace could descend to this level of macabre evil. You want to see hell on earth, Bill Maher, keep pushing your satanic atheism.]

……The full, unedited videos have confirmed that revelations that some aborted baby remains sold by Planned Parenthood go to biotech companies for the purpose of creating “humanized” mice. Meanwhile, Planned Parenthood has been exposed as having sold body parts from aborted babies for as much as 15 years.

The federal law that technically prohibits the sale of aborted babies and their body parts was written by a pro-abortion Congressman decades ago and essentially spells out a process by which sellers of aborted baby body parts can meet certain criteria that allows the sales to be legal. That’s why a Colorado congressman has introduced legislation to totally ban the sales of aborted baby body parts.

One would hope, at the end of all this scandal and stomach-wrenching heartbreak, that’s the very least that would result.  But who knows, it seems only 30% of the American public – almost solely conservatives – have heard of this scandal, so total has been the media embargo on this subject.  So it’s very likely nothing will happen to Planned Barrenhood.  If so, what a damning indictment of this nation and the depths to which it has sunk, and what a frightening portent for the future.

God will not be mocked forever. At some point, there will be a horrific reckoning for this nation’s descent into the most despicable evil.

Meanwhile, Texas Catholic Conference is most concerned about payday loan businesses and Catholic Erf day.

This video is pretty rough.  Discretion advised.

How a disordered generation of modernist priests worked a revolution in the clergy….. August 18, 2015

Posted by Tantumblogo in abdication of duty, different religion, disaster, episcopate, error, General Catholic, horror, Latin Mass, Papa, persecution, sadness, scandals, secularism, self-serving, Society, the struggle for the Church, Tradition.
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……or, at least one episode in that process.  I almost said a “wicked generation,” but I chickened out. Do you think the term wicked too strong? Wicked, to me, implies willful maliciousness.  Were many of those young priests of the 60s who wanted to work a revolution in the Church knowledgeable that their revolution would be catastrophic for souls, or were they simply imbued with the spirit of the times, something that caused them to accept a lot of destructive ideas?  Many of those priests are winding down their careers after seeing the Church implode on their watch…….do they have any regrets?  From my experience…..not too much.  And to what degree did their demonstrated propensity for immoral lives (priest sex abuse scandal, sodomy, 40% left the priesthood, etc.)

Another factor to consider in the below is how many good and holy priests were drummed out of their vocation by these revolutionary forces, who almost always had episcopal backing?  If Vatican II was a coup of a small modernist minority against the majority, why did so many bishops then quite willingly, even forcefully implement the revolutionary program, rather than impose it?  Also something to keep in mind in the below, if Baltimore is at all representative, there actually was quite a bit of resistance to the massive novelties imposed after Vatican II, but consistent episcopal policy led to those resisters being ostracized, marginalized, and drummed out of active ministry if not out of the priesthood altogether.

A lot of  questions.  I found this little episode quite revealing but also quite saddening.  Such a fever came over so many souls at that time!

On February 9, 1969, parishioners of St. Anthony’s Church in Baltimore picketed their own church, carrying homemade signs declaring: “We want Monsignor Manns, Send Martel far way,” and collecting signatures to petition Cardinal Shehan to halt the forced resignation of Manns, who was their pastor. [Baltimore, once the primatial see for the entire United States, fell into disorder earlier and further than most dioceses.  Some see in this a lingering effect of Cardinal Gibbon’s Americanism.]  A week earlier, the cardinal sent Monsignor Manns a personal letter explaining the reasons why he was requesting his resignation, including the monsignor’s clash with his associate Father Martel, and the cardinal gave him ten days to respond. The Friday night before the Sunday morning protest, Monsignor Manns informed the women of the sodality about his imminent removal, and they asked him what they could do for him. A handful of women then quickly organized the small protest. At the early Sunday morning Masses at 6:00 and 7:00AM, Monsignor Manns informed the congregation that he was being replaced. After Mass, members of the sodality collected signatures in support of their pastor. [At what other time in Church history have the most faithful souls felt compelled to protest their own parishes due to injustices worked against them or faithful priests?  There were some episodes in the early Church to be sure, but this has been a constant feature of the Church since Vatican II]

The situation escalated after the 7:00 AM Mass when Father Martel approached Mrs. LeVeta Sakievich and attempted to seize her petition. When she refused, he pushed her to the ground, after which she was taken to the hospital to be treated for her injuries. Later, she pressed assault charges against Father Martel. [Just wow] Cardinal Shehan was informed about the unfolding situation, and he telephoned the monsignor. He instructed Monsignor Manns to stop the protests, and that any encouragement of the protests would be an “act of rebellion” under canon law. He also dispatched Auxiliary Bishop T. Austin Murphy to St. Anthony’s to ensure that the picketing and collection of signatures had ended. The women agreed to stop their protest, but they had already collected several hundred signatures in support of their pastor. [It’s difficult to tell from this distance of time the merits of the case.  This raises the question that has vexed so many Catholics since this time: how to respond to episcopal authority seemingly complicit in the destruction of the Church and behavior damaging to souls, when ordered under obedience by that same authority to acquiesce.  I don’t know if obedience was merited in this case but I do think, rather strongly, that the revolutionaries have always used the mantra of obedience to quell orthodox reaction, to a degree that has hurt both the Church and souls.  There is precedent in Church history for faithful who have refused authority’s demands for obedience for the good of souls and the maintenance of orthodox belief]

Five days later, Monsignor Manns met with the cardinal……By the end of the week, Monsignor Manns submitted his resignation, and it was made effective immediately, with the requirement that the beloved priest leave his former parish by March 1. [I wonder, what was the threat against him if he did not resign?  Involuntary sacking and the diocese seeking a forced laicization, denial of whatever stipend he received from the Archdiocese, etc?  IOW, the usual threats?]

The official press release of the archdiocese, as published in The Catholic Review, read:

[I]t became painfully clear that the monsignor found it impossible to carry out the Archdiocesan policy in keeping with the spirit of the Second Vatican Council, particularly in the areas of liturgical renewal in the parish, lay responsibility and the proper role of associate pastors in the parish. [The revolution will brook no dissent] Monsignor Manns has served the Archdiocese well in various capacities for over forty years. It is regrettable that his resignation was attended by so much distasteful publicity.”

Even Monsignor Manns’ detractors agreed that he was an effective administrator. In his twelve years as pastor of St. Anthony’s Church, he built a new rectory and convent, remodeled and built an addition to the elementary school, and increased the parish membership from 7,500 to 12,000. The parish boasted twelve Masses every Sunday. Today, the parish school is closed, and the school building is up for sale. The parish has merged with a neighboring parish, and only two Sunday masses are scheduled, which are reduced to only one Sunday Mass during the summer months. [So typical]

Father Martel has left active ministry. [If one were to count the instances in which bishops have sided with progressive priests who later left the priesthood or were drummed out by even higher authority…….well, the number would be pretty high]

………A Catholic revolution in the priesthood was afoot in the 1960s even without the impetus of the council. [Very true.  But the Council ramped up the “dissent” by an order of magnitude and gave it a patina of ecclesiastical approval]

The forced removal of older and more traditional priests was much more pervasive than the single case of Monsignor Manns.……The following year, the senate drew up a list of a dozen pastors who did not accept all the implications of the Second Vatican Council, in particular liturgical changes and lay involvement.  [Meaning trashing the Mass, EMHCs, lay people lectors, and Ms. So and So advising divorce at the family ministry?] According the The Premier See, Cardinal Shehan requested that these pastors resign based on the senate’s recommendation. When the senate agreed to make seventy the mandatory age for retirement and sixty-five the optional age, twenty percent of pastors in Baltimore were forced to retire between 1967 and 1969, representing a titanic shift in the leadership of the archdiocese……..The old priests were out — especially those who expressed reservations about the changes occurring — and the young and more progressive priests were in. [It’s a delicious irony that now the young priests are the orthodox ones and the older ones are those bitterly clinging to their power.  Most  young priests have to hide their orthodoxy so long as these aging hippies remain]

……..One year prior, fifty-five archdiocesan priests from Baltimore signed the Statement of Dissent composed by Father Charles Curran, and the list of priests was printed in The Baltimore Sun. Without informing the cardinal, these priests publicly voiced their opposition to Humanae Vitae, yet none of them were forced to resign from their positions. Reflecting on this disparity, the 1960s marked a new era for the Catholic Church. Priests have always run afoul of the hierarchy, but perhaps for the first time, priests who upheld the traditional teachings of Catholicism were running into opposition from above and forced from their positions whereas priests who openly challenged church teachings were tolerated.

And thus the revolution is efficiently described.  Yes there were many portents and trends in this direction prior to 1962, but it was only after Vatican II that these trends became so dominant and overpowering.  Nothing describes the cataclysm that afflicted the Church during those tumultuous years more than this fact: modernist-progressives could literally get away with murder, or at least raping 11 year old boys, while those adhering to what the Church had always believed were persona non grata.  That’s a very effective policy to radically make over any body, but especially one so dependent on the public maintenance of a constant line of belief and practice like the Church.

Another interesting perspective on the same subject: fighting revolutionary ideals takes constant vigilance and enormous effort. Somewhere during the course of the 20th century, many leaders in the Church opted out of the fight. Those modernists forced  underground by St. Pius X were clearly surfacing even by the late 1920s in places like Germany, and around the world by the mid-40s.  By the time of the decisive moment, the orthodox elements were woefully out-manned, out-gunned, and out-maneuvered.

I’m trying to cap posts at 1500 1600 words, so I’ll end there.

Cuba’s suffering Catholics ignored as Obama, Francis support totalitarian regime August 18, 2015

Posted by Tantumblogo in abdication of duty, Basics, disaster, episcopate, error, General Catholic, Holy suffering, horror, martyrdom, Papa, persecution, pr stunts, scandals, secularism, self-serving, Society, the struggle for the Church.
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There is a great deal of breathless coverage in the media over the normalization of relations between the despotic, authoritarian regime and the communist government of Cuba.  Progressives are beside themselves with glee that one of their favorite countries in the world, which is coincidentally one of the few remaining one-party ruled communist states, is now going to be open for travel and trade.  The Vatican played a significant role in this process under Pope Francis, and Pope Francis is set to visit Cuba shortly.  Even Raul Castro himself has proclaimed that Pope Francis is his kind of guy.

Overlooked in all this giddy display is the plight of Cuba’s Catholics, who remain as ostracized, persecuted, and maligned by the communist party as ever.  They, and all those who oppose the Castroite regime, will be the ones who pay the largest price for this normalization in relations, which will have the primary effect of providing the money needed to keep the current regime in power for many  years into the future, just as we’ve seen occur with normalization of relations with China and Vietnam (my emphasis and comments):

Secretary of State John Kerry’s historic flag-raising at the U.S. Embassy in Havana on Friday culminates a diplomatic accomplishment for the Obama administration and Pope Francis. But the ceremony has some irony, not all that unlikePresident George W. Bush’s 2003 “Mission Accomplished” speech.

The island’s dissidents weren’t invited, and the pontiff who helped usher in the new relations might have been expected to side with Cuba’s persecuted faithful. But when asked about Cuba’s spotty record, Francis demurred. “I would say that in many countries of the world, human rights are not respected,” he said during a July in-flight news conference. “Religious liberty is not a reality in the entire world; there are many countries that do not allow it.” [But should the Church reward regimes founded on hatred of the Church and the most vile persecution of Catholics?  Should the Church be involved in diplomatic shenanigans that have the effect of helping to keep that regime in power?  In a different time, the Church had leaders that would have said unequivocally NO, we do not support this regime, we oppose it, and we support the poor suffering Catholics who groan under its heavy yoke]

……..But some in Castro’s Cuba aren’t buying it. “It is a mockery for Raul Castro tell the pope that he may return to the bosom of the church and pray again,” Berta Soler told Spanish radio. Soler is the leader of the Ladies in White, a Catholic opposition movement made up of relatives of jailed human rights activists who attend Mass and silently take to the streets while wearing white.

Soler’s skepticism might have something to do with Castro’s security goons, who continue to harass and detain the Ladies and other dissidents. Just days before Kerry’s visit, the government rounded up about 50 of Soler’s Ladies. The detentions are only “further proof of the Cuban government’s intolerance towards people who think differently,” Soler told the PanAm Post.

But Castro’s crackdown seems to be more about religious freedom than the ballot box. “Many times, we haven’t been able to get to church,” Soler told the National Review at this year’s Oslo Freedom Forum. “The few who actually do make it to church have been detained for over five hours. They have been beaten.” This might be why Soler is more than a little frustrated with her spiritual shepherd. “The European Union, the USA, Pope Francis — they have turned their backs on us,” she said.  [It’s “ostpolitik” all over again.  Recall how Cardinal Mindseintzy and other heroic Catholics were thrown under the bus in the service of Paul VI’s ill-advised and ultimately destructive detente with communist regimes in Eastern Europe.  It took a much different Pope to call those regimes out for their barbarity and inhuman behavior, a policy that many feel contributed directly to their sudden demise.  Now several Eastern European states boast the most visibly Catholic governments in the world (which may be far from ideal, yet, but the turnaround has been amazing).  Thus the fruit of cooperation with Grace and standing, at least in one area, in defense of the Faith.  Apparently Cuba’s long-suffering Catholics won’t get the benefit of the fruits of stalwart promotion of the Faith and calling a spade a spade]

………Pope Francis should at least say something about the lack of freedom in Cuba, and in so doing, minister to Cuba’s dwindling faithful. That Univision survey found that only 27% of Cubans are Catholic, and only a fraction attends Mass regularly. [Of course, because Catholics have been savagely mistreated for decades.  They have also endured a lifetime of Church-bashing communist propaganda.]

As for Raul Castro, he vows to attend “all” the pope’s planned Masses in Cuba. But because papal diplomacy hasn’t worked out too well for Cubans, Francis could exercise some spiritual leadership and deny Castro communion at Mass in the same way Castro denies freedom for the people of Cuba.

Excuse my cynicism, but barring a totally unexpected miracle, that’s not going to happen.  I hope Pope Francis might decry Cuba’s persecution of the Church but I tend to doubt that will happen, either.  If his South American trip is any indication, Pope Francis will shower lauds on the government and speak endlessly, if vaguely, about the plight of the poor.  The irony is, nothing enriches a narrow connected elite more, nor mires more people in grinding poverty, than socialism.  Papal support for socialism – excoriated by so many previous pontiffs! – is the apotheosis of preferring image and rhetoric to reality, is it not?

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