Pope Francis, in a sermon given at a Mass in Ecuador, made some more incredible statements, which may count among the most troubling yet from this spectacularly novel pontificate. Referring to the upcoming Synod, Pope Francis seems to counsel that we had better get over our scandal and preconceived beliefs, and hope for a “miracle of Mercy” from our Lord to contradict Himself and 2000 years of Sacred Scripture, Tradition, and practice:
Even if a pastoral proposal for helping a Catholic family with problems seems scandalous at first, it is possible God could use that proposal to bring healing and holiness, Pope Francis said. [Possible?!? POSSIBLE?!? That’s not good enough! When you’re talking about the eternal destinies of souls, saying “God could turn this monstrous evil into something good” is NOT THE RIGHT APPROACH! Certainly God does do so all the time, but that doesn’t mean that we ENCOURAGE EVIL IN THE HOPE SOMETHING GOOD MIGHT COME FROM IT!]
Encouraging and celebrating family life during a Mass July 6 in Guayaquil, Pope Francis asked people to pray for the October Synod of Bishops on the family, and he tied the synod to the Jubilee of Mercy, a yearlong celebration that will begin in December. [Be ready to be scandalized. Something tells me the post-synodal encyclical is already written, and has been for some time.]
The synod will be a time for the church to “deepen her spiritual discernment and consider concrete solutions to the many difficult and significant challenges facing families in our time,” the pope said.
Celebrating Mass with as many as 1 million people gathered under the hot sun in Los Samanes Park, Pope Francis asked them “to pray fervently for this intention, so that Christ can take even what might seem to us impure, scandalous or threatening, and turn it — by making it part of his ‘hour’ — into a miracle. Families today need this miracle!” [OK, this is at least the second time this Pope has strongly hinted at, or openly declared, scandal or heresy on his part. BY HIS OWN ADMISSION! Dear Lord, how are we to respond?]
Jesuit Father Federico Lombardi, Vatican spokesman, told reporters Pope Francis was not referring to any specific proposal discussed in anticipation of the synod; one of the most common — and most debated pastoral suggestions — was to develop a process or “penitential path” for divorced and civilly remarried Catholics who want to receive Communion but have not received an annulment. [If this isn’t a dark hint of what is planned for the Synod, what else could it be?]
The pope, Father Lombardi said, hopes the synod “will find a way to help people move from a situation of sin to a situation of grace.” [It won’t by any of the proposals we’ve seen put forth thus far. All it does is surrender to sin and attempt to paper it over by pretending it’s OK, or even virtue. To the degree it does, it is direct cooperation in moral evil, something unthinkable for the Church. But we are apparently in unthinkable times.]
Pope Francis acknowledged the suffering and hope of young people who do not experience happiness and love at home, the “many women, sad and lonely,” who wonder how their love “slipped away,” and the elderly who feel cast aside. [Ever notice that this Pope seems to have a real big issue with loneliness? But what of the great Saints who lived solitary lives, fleeing the world and all the sin it constantly promotes?]
I wanted to add a bit more from Aleteia on his sermon, because I think it is revealing:
Mary is attentive in the course of this wedding feast, she is concerned for the needs of the newlyweds. She is not closed in on herself, worried only about her little world. Her love makes her “outgoing” towards others. So she notices that the wine has run out. Wine is a sign of happiness, love and plenty. [Speak for yourself.] How many of our adolescents and young people sense that these are no longer found in their homes? How many women, sad and lonely, wonder when love left, when it slipped away from their lives? How many elderly people feel left out of family celebrations, cast aside and longing each day for a little love? This lack of “wine” can also be due to unemployment, illness and difficult situations which our families may experience.
Or, Pope Francis, this “lack of wine” can be due to the profound spiritual poverty and sickness that pervades this culture far, far more than any worldly problems like unemployment or illness. How does simply normalizing that poverty and hoping for a miracle – a miracle unlikely to come in service of something in the service of evils so reprehensible to God – serve to improve people’s “concrete situations?” It doesn’t, save from a sentimental perspective. It might salve his feelings, but it won’t save any souls.
I’m trying to follow the logic above: if I am reading the argument – or hope, I don’t know – right, Pope Francis seems to hope that by gravely weakening the entire moral edifice of the Church by some gaping pastoral opening to those lost in grievous sin, they will experience an enormous conversion of heart and become very good, virtuous, pious Catholics, or at least Christians or protestants of some stripe. But the Church has experimented with watering down Doctrine for decades now, and the evidence that this approach does not work at all, and is in fact counterproductive, is vast. The Church virtually never teaches against contraception anymore (save for papal documents of the preceding two papacies), and yet contraceptive use has never been higher. Surrendering on contraception neither brought nor kept people in the Church. There is zero evidence that a further doctrinal surrender will do any different – quite the contrary, it will almost certainly cause millions more to conclude that the Church as an institution is useless.
This isn’t looking for a miracle, it’s a fantastical wish, like a 6 year old girl hoping she gets a unicorn for her birthday. It might be sweet and well-intentioned, but it ain’t gonna happen.
Something else: we have heard much from this Pope about his disdain for the conduct he perceives in many pious souls. He has called them (us?) “neo-Pelagians,” “sourpusses,” “prometheans,” “bead counters,” “closed minded searching for security,” and much else besides. We see him above describe our Lady’s virtue as being associated with her willingness to reach out to others, seeming to draw a distinction against the “closed in on themselves” again.
But isn’t that what trads do with our great concern for the Church and world? Aren’t we very frequently reaching out to others? Aren’t we praying and working and striving to see a Church that is much more beneficial to souls than the construct of the past 50 years? Aren’t we the ones willing to suffer (and often do) for our Faith, while it is these “saints” being chased after “on the margins” who couldn’t care less, or are really doing much of the persecuting? Does our Pope have an inverse view of the world and Church as they really are?
And how can Church leadership once again expect the faithful to withstand yet another volte face? Are we not tiring of watching a doctrinal tennis match, with the ball bouncing back from one side of the court to another from one pontificate to the next? This is no way to run a Church. It’s also no way to convert and save souls, the vast majority of whom will only conclude from an unprecedented doctrinal surrender that they were quite correct to dismiss the Church and all its hypocritical dogmas all along.
Lord, I beat my breast over how we have offended Thee. Please have mercy on us and stop this descent into spiritual anarchy and darkness.
I very much support this idea. I’ve lamented on this blog a number of times the institutionalization that has set into the pro-life movement, with constant cautions to only ever play it very safe and never give the movement a black eye by doing something dramatic. Gone are the early days of the movement with protesters forming human chains outside mill entrances, and Operation Rescue invading mills to try to save a few lives in heroic efforts.
Where has our passivity and deference to authority gotten us? Have things gotten better? Yes there have been limitations to abortions in many states, but it still remains very available and very cheap. It might be a bit more hassle if you live outside a major urban area, but those with even a modicum of determination can always have their baby killed. Meanwhile, in virtually every other area, the collapse of morality and virtue has only accelerated. Playing Mr. Nice Guy has gotten us nowhere:
Roe v. Wade, which the other two branches of government have tacitly endorsed, effectively condemned millions of innocent children to death, over 50 million to date. If the Shoah undercut the legitimacy of the German government, surely the many millions of innocent deaths have compromised legitimacy of our government. The most recent attack [Justice Kennedy’s imposition of pseudo-sodo-marriage] on the moral order has simply deepened the case.
Catholics and other Christians who oppose these crimes have stood fast in teaching and belief, but have done little to reverse them. In the days of Nazism, there was both condemnation and active resistance. That resistance was both non-violent and violent, and it had a role in actually defeating a powerful government and replacing it. [Small role]
Christian resistance has been virtually non-existent when it comes to active resistance to this government of ours that offends justice and truth and thereby contributed to the deaths of tens of millions. Now it has shattered marriage as a civil institution. Previous resistance has refused to recognize how the government delegitimizes itself by such actions. So the resistance is limited to trying to pass legislation to reverse abortion, and it will likely take the same approach on homosexual marriage. It simply refuses to oppose the government itself that has caused this madness. [I think many faithful souls, both Christian and protestant, are starting to recognize that this nation is no longer savable through recourse to the normal channels of legislation and all that. We’ve crossed the Rubicon to government by fiat and there is no going back. People need to start to think on what steps they would be willing to take to no longer recognize this government’s authority over them. More on that below]
Now, I believe firmly that to be effective, Christians must resist in non-violently, and only non-violently. But this resistance must take place in very public ways, by refusing to cooperate with a government that has involved itself in crimes against humanity, and in the destruction of marriage, family, and the social order based upon the family…….
……..The Church cannot remain neutral to this governmental aggression and reasonably hope to save its children from becoming children of the government.[Whole generations have been lost already while we willingly blinded ourselves to the awful truth that this government ceased to be moral 50 years ago with Griswold vs. Connecticut and has only descended more and more into outright promotion of evil since]This battle is just beginning, especially for the souls of children. They are soon going to be aggressively indoctrinated in this destruction of marriage just as they are being indoctrinated today in moral relativism with respect to human sexuality in government schools. Our children – all children – need a public witness to remind them they are in a hostile, anti-Christian environment. There is no time to lose.
I very much agree. But how many bishops do you think are really going to be willing to suffer the reaction that will come from promoting active resistance to the government? They are utterly dependent on remaining in the good graces of this immoral government for billions of dollars of funding annually. Few, if any, will take any real action – by personal leadership, as opposed to an occasional press release or speech – that will put that funding in threat. Of course, the calls to stop that funding are already exploding among the sexularists, it will be gone likely within a few years, anyway, but any strong Catholic response will have to come from the laity, with probably a few score good priests setting a helpful example.
I think many folks are much more in hunker down mode than they are preparing for active resistance. Patrick Archbold is running a series of posts from an interview with the reliably confrontational Ann Barnhardt exploring ways to resist the government. I will say this for Miss Barnhardt, she backs up her strong rhetoric with equally strong action. She has dramatically reduced her income and assets and refused to pay federal income taxes. She’s a financial expert, I’m sure she knows how to pull off what she’s doing with minimal legal repercussions – perhaps she could explain her method to all of us (maybe she has already, I don’t know). But it’s not an easy call, especially with dependents in the mix, to willingly slash one’s income to avoid funding this evil government. Nevertheless, it is a step that could be considered. I guess that is basically “going Galt.”
Fr. Pilon at the link posits a few mild forms of resistance: passing legislation (ummm……I thought he said that wasn’t effective?) to get states out of the marriage business altogether, or, alternatively, having the Church refuse to allow its priests to serve as official state agents at wedding ceremonies. Those may be OK for a start, but I don’t see either making much change in this culture. And, I’m not sure that 100,000 very faithful Catholics greatly reducing their income, willingly taking on a huge cross, will make much difference to a government very accustomed to running trillion dollar deficits. To be effective, millions would have to take part.
I thought the comments at First Things might hold more suggestions for resistance, but I saw basically none. I do think just getting the Church out of the state-recognition of marriage business is really just running away from the problem. It’s a very clericalist solution, in that it removes much of the immediate threat for the priest, but doesn’t address the broader problem at all.
This is something for me to think on. I’m not sure what kinds of active resistance to engage in. As for converting people back to reality/morality…….people are so disconnected from the truth, reality and morality that I don’t think anything short of a miracle or cultural collapse (forcing reality on them) will have any impact. Certainly our Church has failed mightily to catechize the culture (heck, the “faithful”) at all on all these matters leading this nation, inexorably, to its demise. I don’t see that changing now.
So……what steps are you, or would you, be willing to take, to demonstrate active resistance towards this government, and to try to oppose it or disassociate oneself from it as much as possible? One thought I’ve had, though it is to do more business on the side and off the books. Not my “real” job, certainly, but both my wife and I have other sources of income I won’t go into. Another idea is to get out of the farm program……that actually brings me money but I hate it, philosophically (I get money for doing nothing, just owning a farm), but it would be an easy way to reject another sign of this government’s legitimacy. There is always protesting. At the 4th of July parade in Irving there were a fair number of “floats” attacking the government’s legitimacy. That was heartening. Those are easy things. What about hard ones? As I said, I have to think about it, but I’m all ears to your suggestions.
I think the main point is: maybe we should all consider doing something. I really hope our good priests start making more suggestions and giving more guidance on how to respond to this immoral government actively, rather than passively waiting for them to come after us.
Wow. It’s so funny when our adversaries on the Left tell us there is no persecution, that Christians continue to enjoy all manner of benefits and are surely free to speak their minds as openly as anyone else. Yeah, because just about everyone is getting fined the cost of a small house and ordered never to speak about certain topics by powerful government apparatchiks. Certainly this happens to left wingers all the time, right? Can’t you remember that radical sodomite group getting thrown in jail just the other day for public lewdness in one of their parades of decadence and self-loathing? Yeah……..neither can I.
Anyway, the very pro-sodomy Oregon official who has made a career out of crushing a rural Oregon Christian couple has finalized his decision on the exhorbitant fine they faced (he is enforcing it in full), and slapped them with a gag order on the subject. Oh the land, of the FREE, and the home, of the sodomites………
Not content with trampling freedom of religion, Oregon authorities have now turned to freedom of speech, issuing a gag order to the Christian owners of Sweet Cakes by Melissa forbidding them from speaking or writing about their Christian beliefs regarding same-sex marriage.
On Thursday, Oregon Labor Commissioner Brad Avakian upheld a preliminary finding that sentenced Aaron and Melissa Klein, the Christian bakers who refused to make a cake for a same-sex wedding, to a fine of $135,000 in emotional damages to the homosexual couple they denied service, but also added a new provision forbidding them to speak about their unwillingness to serve a gay marriage. [And this decision is final. There is really no avenue of appeal in these kinds of “administrative law courts,” where government bureaucrats serve as judge, jury, and executioner. It won’t be long before it comes to that. This is what tyranny looks like. The Founding Fathers revolted for a heckuva lot less than this.]
The couple had accused the Kleins of “mental rape,” adding that they had suffered a “loss of appetite” and “impaired digestion,” which remarkably led to “weight gain.” [And thus we can see how the poor sick lost group of people HAS to have their fantasy rationalization maintained constantly and at all costs. ANY rebuke or contradiction injures their rationalization and causes pangs of doubt and regret for their perversion, which they then channel into anger and outrage – whatever it takes, so long as the rationalization for their sin can be maintained.]
Twisting the actual facts of the case, Avakian declared that the bakers had refused the couple service because they were lesbians, which is demonstrably false, since they happily served other homosexuals who were not seeking a gay wedding cake. [You don’t get it! ANY failure to constantly lionize, extol, and purt’ near worship these people for their wonderful, glorious sin is, to them, tantamount to the gravest evil. And they will make YOU comply. There have been several opinions surface since the disastrous, apparently universe-altering Supreme Court decision that failure to acquiesce to sodomite advances is evidence of punishable bigotry. How that squares with having to have a legal form for each step of heterosexual contact I fail to comprehend. The old joke about sodomy being legal being fine so long as it doesn’t become mandatory is no longer funny]
“This case is not about a wedding cake or a marriage,” Avakian wrote. “It is about a business’s refusal to serve someone because of their sexual orientation. Under Oregon law, that is illegal.” [That statement is laughably false. It’s about refusing to be forced to take part in an action that is morally reprehensible. But the rationalization demands such leaps of illogic all the time]
The Oregon official imposed a gag order on the couple, mandating that they “cease and desist” from speaking publicly about not wanting to bake cakes for same-sex weddings based on their Christian beliefs…….. [He’s basically declaring Christians are not welcome in Oregon, or even more, are illegal in Oregon. At least so far as making ANY public declaration of their faith.]
………“This effectively strips us of all our First Amendment rights,” wrote the Kleins on their Facebook page. “According to the state of Oregon we neither have freedom of religion or freedom of speech.”
You think you live in a democracy? You think this country has any future? Increasingly, the unaccountable and lawless government at all levels is speaking very clearly. Sodomites are wonderful, preferred people. Christians are horrible, awful people we really don’t want here. That view is a perfect inversion of all that is right and decent. It has become the default view of our self-anointed governing elites.
This nation is bringing a curse down on itself, and all that is left is for it to play out. It will end in a nightmare of blood and bitter hatred, unless by some miracle this process of sexularization is stopped. That’s what we’re down to, now, praying for a miracle or for the strength to withstand the coming blood persecution. Barring that miracle, this nation as presently construed is finished.
Here’s a final question for anyone from Oregon (I don’t know if JB still reads): have any priests or bishops in Oregon publicly come to the defense of this couple? Has the Church reached out to them with strong support and charity for their cause and their suffering? We always hear about solidarity for the oppressed in the post-conciliar Church, well, here is a young family being brutally oppressed…….has any official solidarity been expressed for them? Given that they are obviously devout in their beliefs, could not such solidarity and even concrete aid possibly result in their conversion, which should be the ultimate goal of every action the Church takes?
1 comment so far
So here’s a crime the US bishops might want to consider in their headlong and, I fear, rather self-serving commitment to totally unrestricted Hispanic (but not Chinese, or Iranian, etc) immigration into this country. An illegal alien with numerous felony priors, deported 5 times from this country, shot and killed a San Francisco woman walking with her father in a busy tourist district apparently for the fun of it. ICE had targeted him for deporting again but San Francisco, following their sanctuary policy which a good number of bishops have endorsed, refused to allow him to be deported and released him without contacting ICE. So now a father is grieving and how knows how many other people have had their worlds turned upside down by leftist shibboleths (which are nothing but a vehicle to what they really crave -power):
The man arrested in connection with the seemingly random killing of a woman who was out for a stroll with her father along the San Francisco waterfront is an illegal immigrant who previously had been deported five times, federal immigration officials say.
Further, Immigration and Customs Enforcement says San Francisco had him in their custody earlier this year but failed to notify ICE when he was released.
“DHS records indicate ICE lodged an immigration detainer on the subject at that time, requesting notification prior to his release so ICE officers could make arrangements to take custody. The detainer was not honored,” ICE said in a statement Friday afternoon.
Kathryn Steinle was killed Wednesday evening at Pier 14 — one of the busiest tourist destinations in the city.
Police said Thursday they arrested Francisco Sanchez in the shooting an hour after it occurred.
On Friday, ICE revealed their records indicate the individual has been previously deported five times, most recently in 2009, and is from Mexico.
“His criminal history includes seven prior felony convictions, four involving narcotics charges,” ICE said in a statement.
ICE briefly had him in their custody in March after he had served his latest sentence for “felony re-entry,” but turned him over to San Francisco police on an outstanding drug warrant. At this time, ICE issued the detainer — effectively asking that he be turned back over to ICE when San Francisco was finished with him.
But ICE was not notified. The incident is sure to renew criticism of San Francisco’s sanctuary city policies.
Social changes like immigration are always fraught with benefits and detriments. But totally unconstrained immigration of the type advocated by many in the USCCB – and even pushed as policy – is not demanded by virtue nor is it counseled by the Doctrine of the Faith. Surely we can be generous while still controlling the flow of dangerous individuals over our border, something almost impossible with present policy, which does nothing to deter dangerous individuals and simply tries to clean up the mess after some atrocity has occurred. With a border fence, the rate of immigration can be controlled and dangerous individuals screened out from admittance. Surely this is not a radical or hard-hearted step to take, it seems the bare minimum of prudence.
But too many profit illicitly off the present system, which actually encourages the “human trafficking” our Holy Father has been at such pains to deplore, for anything to change. The powers that be want cheap labor and other “goods” the unconstrained immigration provides. This includes the bishops, who can go to their ad limina visits to Rome boasting of far better numbers of faithful than they would were it not for the huge influx of temporarily Catholic immigrants, most of whom (or their children, at least) shuck the Faith after they’ve been here a few years. But the faithful are left carrying the tab for the needs of those who arrive here penniless. That many immigrants eventually work themselves into a more prosperous situation not requiring so much support is a testament to their virtue, not to any virtue in the present immigration policy of this country.
Frigid repressed neo-Victorian left now wants to push ludicrous new “affirmative consent” legal standard for all marital relations…… July 6, 2015Posted by Tantumblogo in asshatery, Basics, disaster, error, foolishness, General Catholic, horror, paganism, scandals, secularism, self-serving, sexual depravity, sickness, Society, unadulterated evil.
Remember when it was the Right that was ostensibly all hung up with sexual peccadilloes and the Left that counseled that they should just relax and get out of other people’s bedrooms? If we ever needed an example that the Left values no belief or opinion but only power, this has to be one of the best. Two very far left legal scholars are now pushing for a new nationwide form of “affirmative consent” in rape laws that would turn millions of Americans into felons overnight and be one of the best arguments ever for chastity. Talk about taking all the fun out of something God gave us to enjoy in the proper context, how about “may I touch your hand, may I touch your shoulder, may I…….” on and on ad infinitum, with failure to do so ipso facto making one guilty of RAPE!
This was one of the big selling points for the liberals. Conservatives were scary religious zealots who wanted to tell you what music you should listen to, censor your movies and television shows, and worst of all, invade your bedroom and tell you who could sleep with and what you could do with them.It was all a bit overblown and it wasn’t as simplistic a partisan narrative as you might remember. (The campaign against rock music lyrics, for example, was spearheaded by Tipper Gore, wife of then-Senator Al Gore.) But there’s little doubt that things have changed, and now it’s the left that is pushing a neo-Victorian code of sexual conduct.
I remember during Bill Clinton’s impeachment, when Ken Starr released a report poring over the details of Clinton’s sordid encounters with Monica Lewinsky, how creepy all the liberals thought it was for a prosecutor to examine every detail of other people’s sexual encounters, like some kind of peeping Tom. Yet this is now the exact system set up on every college campus, which is prepared to produce a Starr Report for every drunken hook-up.
And the crazy ideas that start on campus have a tendency to escape from the asylum. Thus, the Washington Examiner‘s Ashe Schow reports that the campus system of “yes means yes,” in which lovers must receive express permission for every minor stage of a sexual act or risk being prosecuted by a regretful partner after the fact, is now being proposed as the legal model for criminal prosecution nationwide. As Schow puts it, this is a standard “so stringent that it would criminalize millions of Americans overnight,” and is “part of a push to bring authoritarianism into the bedroom.” [Will it apply to sodomites? Or do they get a free pass? Is this nothing but one more effort to totally confuse and emasculate men? Note that there is ZERO exemption for properly married people. So you better consult with that lawyer fast, or it’s going to be a loooong summer.]
And it’s not just what goes on behind closed doors. Every statement about sex, every public depiction of anything that remotely connotes sex—from movies to music to video games—has to be loaded up with social and political significance and policed for evidence of forbidden sexual attitudes.
The left sold promiscuous sex to destroy the family, one of the foundational limits to their desire for uninhibited Orwellian levels of power over people’s lives. Before, it was crazy free love that got their foot in the door, convincing many people to trade away massive areas of influence over their lives by the government so long as they could get their thing on. Now it’s time to go to the next level, now that the family is all but ruined, and start criminalizing even the act which is suitable for the procreation of children as “rape.” Note that aggrieved partners could make a totally unsubstantiated claim years after the fact that consent had not been given, and whammo! you’ve got a felony rape charge to defend against. And how can their be any evidence without videotaping every encounter, or documenting every step with signed affidavits of consent? This is beyond ludicrous – but it is also very similar to how the Soviet and Chinese communist states behaved.
Only a leftist could come up with something so asinine. As for whether Catholics are stricken with all manner of hangups regarding intimacy, have you ever seen our families? That doesn’t just happen. It takes lots of practice, and we are very, very good at it.
There was a fairly bad sci-fi movie from the 80s called Cherry 2000. Set in 2017, the American economy is destitute, and male-female relationships have broken down to the point that many men prefer robots made for the purpose of relieving their lust (rather akin to internet pornography). The “Cherry” models are seen as by far the best, but they are no longer made and very rare. After the hero “Sam” accidentally destroys his Cherry model, in frustration he goes out to a single’s bar to try to meet with an actual woman. The scene below is eerily similar to what the radical left would try to make relations into (marriage will be so much easier), with haggling and legal contracts worked out in advance and female selling of their prowess through descriptions of their numerous tawdry encounters (not shown, fortunately). Hero Sam leaves unimpressed:
Seemed like silly sci-fi imaginings in the wayback, but not so much anymore. And this is the predictable result of abandoning chastity, decency, and virtue generally.
Another long-time query I’ve had, is how is it that modernism, which a good number of very solid historians and current-day commenters (for that time) were convinced had been completely shattered by the intervention of Pope Saint Pius X, came roaring back to be basically ascendant in all non-episcopal levers of power by the mid-1940s (heads of religious orders, secretariats of numerous dicasteries, a lot of ordained diocesan and other bureaucratic staff, etc, and of course almost all of academia, lay or ordained)? Interestingly, Dom Prosper Gueranger, who died before modernism really broke out, may have the answer. From his brief biography of Pope Saint Leo II, how is it that heresy formally condemned and even extirpated, seemingly, from the Church’s body can somehow resurrect itself, and often quite quickly?
The answer, in short, is lack of vigilance on the part of subsequent priests, bishops, and popes:
How was it that Saint Leo’s clear and complete exposition of the dogmas and the anathemas of Chalcedon did not succeed in silencing the arguments of that heresy which refused to our nature its noblest title, by denying that it had been assumed in its integrity by the Divine Word? Because for truth to win the day it suffices not merely to expose the lie uttered by error. More than once, history gives instances of the most solemn anathemas ending in nothing but lulling the vigilance of the guardians of the holy city. The struggle seemed ended, the need of repose was making itself felt amidst the combatants, a thousand other matters called for the attention of the Church’s rulers; and so while feigning utmost deference, nay, ardor even, if needful, for the new enactments, error went on noiselessly, making profit of the silence which ensued after its defeat. Then did its progress become all the more redoubtable at the very time it was pretending to have disappeared without leaving a trace behind.
I think that description of the constant rise of heresy in the early Church, even after its repeated “defeat” in being declared heretical, sums up what happened to the Church after Pope Saint Pius X’s condemnation of modernism. It simply went underground, for a short while, and depended on lethargy in the hierarchy to easily resume it’s attack on the Church.
Coupled with a long but extremely interesting post at Rorate, wherein the highly problematic Fr. Louis Bouyer analyzes the “Lefebvre affair” from the point of view of 1978, and I think the answer – perhaps it’s been obvious to you for years, it hasn’t been totally clear to me – becomes apparent.
There were two essential and related factors in the resurrection of modernism. One was lethargy, coupled with the constant temptation of our natures to reject God and His revealed Truth, seeking for a more “human” approach to divinity, but the other aspect was perhaps to be found in the very structure of the Church in that period. St. Pius X crushed modernism – it certainly seemed – decisively and thoroughly. But once that great shepherd was called to his well-earned reward, there was no one else of equal vigilance in the Church to insure the heresy remained crushed. If the price of liberty is eternal vigilance, then an orthodox Faith requires even more.
Bouyer’s analysis of the spread of the revolution in the Church – which I certainly disagree with in detail, and which reeks of Gallicanism – is I think correct in the fact that Vatican I and the definition of papal infallibility had perhaps resulted in an imbalance in the Church, with excessive obeisance towards the Holy See and, even more, a sort of deference that saw the Holy See as the only possible solution to all problems facing the Church. As such, bishops and even priests began to lapse in their roles as guardians of the Truth, always expecting Rome to be that guardian. Already by the 1940s bishops and heads of religious orders were tolerating a great deal of “dissent” and abuse (if not encouraging or taking part in it themselves, especially in Europe), sure in their minds that so long as Rome did not condemn whatever was going on, it must be OK. Unfortunately for the Church and billions of souls, there has not been a pontiff of the vigilance and doctrinal certainty of a Pius X or Gregory XVI for a century or so now.
After Vatican II, when obedience shifted from the greatest virtue to a sad joke, the floodgates were open and generations of inactivity from the episcopate laid the groundwork for their – it must be said – pathetic response to the revolution in their midst (Bouyer does make another valid point – after VII the Church saw the spectacle of numerous pontiffs who had been the most stringently orthodox suddenly, faced with what I guess they thought was a real change in orientation in the Church, become fervent progressives. They did that because that’s the signal they picked up from Rome, rightly or wrongly, so that the imbalance in the Church of hypermontanism is double). I have long thought that an excessive hyper-montanism played a role in the sudden and shocking collapse of every possible measure of Church life after Vatican II – when “collegiality” attempted to return some authority to the bishops, they were conditioned by the previous decades of relative inactivity to be quite unable to handle their responsibility. Matters spun out of control in a matter of months, with the near total breakdown of ecclesiastical authority (only, it seems, exercised on those rare faithful victims whom that authority knows will respond), and that authority hasn’t even really begun a right restoration even to this day.
I hope this is not all obvious and a frightful bore. It has always seemed somewhat inexplicable to me that men who professed such orthodoxy when they saw that as the reigning paradigm in the Church could, almost overnight, suddenly profess something radically different. I’m sure many of these were perhaps charlatans during the “orthodox period” but I can’t believe that was most or all. They were obviously creatures of convenience chosen more for their administrative and fundraising capabilities than their stalwart orthodoxy, but I’ve always thought there had to be more to it than politicians in Roman collar bending with the wind. Why did so few rise up to defend the Faith? Why did so many quite willingly sell their birthright for a mess of progressive pottage? Why did so few take up the torch for the 2000 year old Faith that had been entrusted to them as the world’s most precious treasure?
Lack of vigilance. Lack of faith. Convenience. Conditioning. And a firm belief that the Holy See, even in a “prudential Council,” could do no wrong?
……Cardinal Dolan yawns, does nothing, university praises his actions. He was “wed” in an episcopal church, which church just contradicted their long-promised stand of never actually “sacramentally marrying” people of the same-sex, while holding out some similar ceremony of “union.” That stand didn’t even persist for a week after the apparently all-knowing, all-powerful Supreme Court decision. More on that in a bit, including my prediction for the future of the Episcopal Church, USA. But first, the sodomite theology chair:
The chairman of the theology department at Fordham University has gotten married—to another man.
The New York Times, which up until a few years ago, declined running wedding announcements involving same-sex couples, reported that J. Patrick Hornbeck II “married” Patrick Anthony Bergquist Saturday at St. Bartholomew’s Episcopal Church in Manhattan. The ceremony took place June 27, just a day after the US Supreme Court legalized same-sex “marriage” nationwide. That would not have been necessary legally, since New York State has allowed gay “marriage” since 2011. But the ceremony was conducted before the Episcopal Church in America voted this week to allow same-sex “marriage” rites in its churches.
When asked whether Fordham was concerned about having a professor of theology whose lifestyle choice is in opposition to the teaching of the Catholic Church about marriage, a spokesman for the university said Hornbeck has the right to get married. [That does not answer the question. Fordham is in NYC. Cardinal Dolan reported he was positively giddy over the marriage, and couldn’t wait to clap Hornbeck on the back with his bear paw and say “good for you!”]
“While Catholic teachings do not support same-sex marriage, we wish Professor Hornbeck and his spouse a rich life filled with many blessings on the occasion of their wedding in the Episcopal Church,” said Bob Howe, Fordham’s senior director of communications. “Professor Hornbeck is a member of the Fordham community, and like all University employees, students and alumni, is entitled to human dignity without regard to race, creed, gender, and sexual orientation.” [First of all, getting “married” outside the Church used to be grounds for excommunication, removal of which was reserved to the Sovereign Pontiff. Secondly, he’s double-excommunicate by publicly declaring his support for the evil of sodomy. But the hard-hearted PR man ignored the real question and gave public scandal for the 50,000th time by playing up this grave offense against God and nature.]
Howe emphasized that same-sex unions are “now the law of the land, and Professor Hornbeck has the same constitutional right to marriage as all Americans.” [As I said, they will never tire of throwing this in our faces, as if a national law somehow has any bearing on the solemn Doctrine of the Faith.]
…….In 2014, Hornbeck participated in a symposium at Fordham titled “Who Am I to Judge? How Pope Francis Is Changing the Church.”…….
“American Catholics and their church have not been on the same page for some time,” said Hornbeck. “But now the pope is opening up space for dialogue.”…….[Enjoy your dialogue while it lasts. I pray for your conversion, you can dialogue until your last breath but then you will face He Who will have no care for your self-serving sophistries, save for how they wounded His Body, the Church.]
As to the Episcopalians, via LifeSiteNews, the folly of collegiality and “democratic governance” revealed:
The bishops of the U.S. Episcopal Church gave the green light last week for clergy to perform same-sex “weddings,” in a heavily-debated fundamental change set to come in the door incrementally.
As of November 1 of this year homosexual couples will have the right to be “married” in the church, the result of new liturgies for same-sex couples approved Wednesday at the denomination’s General Convention in Salt Lake City. [Well we can see from the above some just couldn’t even wait that further 4 months]
The bishops also accepted changing the church’s canons (rules) governing marriage, to make them gender neutral, thus replacing the terms “man and woman” with “couple.” [You hate filled bigots, you make me sense! Who are you to deny marriage to a thruple, or quadruple, or any random group of people who exchange bodily fluids in a soiree that has even the demons blushing?]
Episcopal clergy however, will be allowed to refuse to perform a homosexual “marriage” with the promise they would not be penalized, and individual bishops were also given the right to refuse to allow same-sex ceremonies to take place in their diocese. [This won’t last 3 years]
The compromise is angering Episcopalians on both sides of the issue, with liberal factions potentially trying to block the plan and insist on the immediate introduction of same-sex “marriage” with no way for dioceses to opt out, and conservatives likely to reach out to overseas leaders in the wider Anglican Communion for help in getting the church to stop.
My prediction: the sect that calls itself the Episcopal Church USA will split and resplit and cease to exist, for all practical purposes, within the next 10 years or so. It already barely exists, with the median Sunday attendance less than 100 in its churches, but the older liberal membership is rapidly dying off, or simply losing interest, while the relatively few conservatives who remain are finally facing the reality that whatever hopes they held that the Episcopal Church might come back to its senses are increasingly forlorn. In trying to please everyone and always be right at the cutting edge of the leftist zeitgeist, they’re losing everyone.
However, if you recall, Pope Francis, while still Cardinal Jorge, deplored Anglicanorum Coetibus and the Ordinariate, complaining to the local Anglican (ahem) bishop in Buenos Aires how wrong-headed it was to try to bring souls into the Church Christ founded. Soooo…….we’ve got that going for us.
It’s always been a bit of a mystery to me why consecrated religious proved so susceptible to the revolution that swept through the Church in the mid-20th century. From rapid growth and solid orthodoxy to embrace of all manner of heresy, childish mythology, bitter hatred of authority and finally, total collapse…….it is such a remarkable devolution that it beggars the imagination. Of all the segments of the Church, it is quite likely that no segment has experienced a more thorough and radical change than religious life. Collectively, religious have gone from being one of the greatest bulwarks of the Church to one of its gravest liabilities.
Of course there are exceptions. But how was it that hundreds of thousands of souls who had felt this great call from God, and cooperated sufficiently with it to pledge their entire lives to serving God in His Church (as it once was), over a period of a few years came to reject not just that call but the entire rationale behind it, going from lovers of traditional piety and devotion to radical leftist apparatchiks? Yes embrace of heresy and the wiles of the devil were key elements, but why did religious (and, to nearly the same degree, priests) prove so such easy prey to these age old temptations?
Donna Steichen offers some compelling reasons in her book Ungodly Rage: The Hidden Face of Catholic Feminism. I think much of the below correlates with what faithful Catholics already know, but she does posit that the rot set in earlier than some may have thought, and she also offers evidence of why religious proved unusually susceptible to the revolution in Church and culture. All quotes below from Chapter 5 The Domino Effect (my emphasis and comments):
During the first half of the twentieth century, nuns were almost universally esteemed as living signs of Christian contradiction to the world. Though most women’s religious communities now seem to be in terminal decline, reverential awe toward nuns still lingers among lay Catholics, so indelible is their old image and so recent their transformation into religious revolutionaries. How did they get from there to here? [I can attest that I have long had a great admiration – I think “reverential awe” sums it up nicely – for orthodox, habited women religious. There is something amazing for me as a man to see women set their natural charms aside, not to mention their calling towards being a spouse and mother, and live a life of such enormous self-denial and offering of herself to Christ and the Church. I think we can have no idea in this life what an enormous gift such women make of themselves (and become), and how much the loss of each individual vocation is such an enormous wound to the Church and world. I pray fervently for more holy vocations to religious life, especially faithful, traditional nuns]
The feminism that is devouring them is an opportunistic disease, insinuated into congregations reeling in pain and confusion from encounters with “new theology.” And while their disintegration reached crisis proportions only after the Second Vatican Council, the original infection was contracted in the late 1940s and early 1950s, when the Sister Formation movement began urging that American nuns earn the same academic qualifications as their secular peers. [It must be remembered, this initiative was strongly pushed by Pope Pius XII, as well] That plausible idea floundered in practice because American higher education, Catholic and non-Catholic, was increasingly contaminated with error, especially int he disciplines nuns usually pursued: education, psychology, catechetics and theology. John Dewey’s secularist theories, generic skepticism and a succession of popular psychological notions held sway at teacher’s colleges, while neo-modernism was sweeping into Catholic universities from Europe. First exposed to neo-modernist theology in college classes, nuns proved highly susceptible…….
……..When the sisters went back to school, qualities that had been among their virtues contributed to their undoing. They proved to be the same submissive, uncritical, naive, and assiduous students at State U – and, alas, at Catholic U – that they had been in the days of orthodoxy back at dear old Mount St. Swithin’s. But what they were taught was notably different, and few had the sophistication to strain out the camels. Along with educational theory and remedial teaching methods, many swallowed the neo-modernist reinterpretation of Scripture and catechetics, the new morality and new psychology, already prevailing among avant-garde professors. The result was a rapid group conversion in worldview, quickly translated back home into a new vocabulary, new policies and the new excuses that eventually became cliches in the deconstruction. Even before the death of Pope Pius XII, many Catholic grammar schools had ceased to require student attendance at daily Mass, explaining that routine is deadly; if the children attended less often, the Mass would “mean more to them.” [What a crock. It’s at least as likely they would come to think the Mass not very important, since their day no longer revolved around it. But silly, bald assertions like this were extraordinarily commonplace during that time, and the obedience that had – for many good reasons, and some not so good – been drilled into Catholics as pretty near the prime virtue left entire generations completely unprepared to fight for the Faith they have received. If some radical change came from someone they perceived as being in authority, the vast majority went along, no questions asked – lay or religious. I would say unquestioning obedience to human authority, rather than to the Doctrine of the Faith, played as big a part in the revolution’s spread as any other single factor. But in a hierarchical Church, and especially one that had been under siege to schismatic and heretical sects for centuries, unthinking, uncritical obedience was hardly surprising. It also points to the moral quandaries we are increasingly faced with as the revolution seems to determined to advance to a new level right now.] During the late 1950s, nuns in classes I attended were already beginning to refer to Scripture as “mythology,” explaining to questioners that “calling it ‘myth’ doesn’t mean it isn’t true, because a myth is a story that communicates a kind of truth.” [Again, what a crock. And something even a 5th grader could walk away from concluding: Church = myth, myth = fake, ergo Church = fake. Fulton Sheen noted nearly 50 years ago that Catholic schools and universities were where faith goes to die.]The Second Vatican Council was not the cause, but the precipitating occasion, for a revolution already under way. [I think that’s right, to a degree. But Vatican II codified, in many respects, revolutionary ideals, while also providing an awesome novelty: formal Church documents seeming at war with themselves, with nebulous, easily abused statements following statements of relative orthodoxy. As even many Cardinals have noted, various documents of Vatican II can be read in an orthodox or revolutionary manner, depending on one’s disposition. And when you have princes of the Church contradicting one another on the meaning of conciliar documents, what are the laity to do? This is an unprecedented characteristic of Vatican II compared to any of the preceding Church Councils, in that no Dogmas or anathemas were proclaimed and everything is left open to interpretation. The Council ultimately followed a Hegelian “thesis-antithesis” approach, with the “synthesis” to be worked out later. Cardinal Kasper is very clear that his own proposals attacking the moral edifice of the Church are an attempt at that “synthesis.”]
……..Collapsing orders have tended to follow a standard sequence. First, exposure to neo-modernist theology produced a counter-conversion, away from religious conviction (the belief that God is absolute Truth, that the Roman Catholic Church is His agent to reveal that Truth), to acceptance of secular values (autonomy and self-definition, freedom, commitment to secular issues, affirmation of themselves as “change agents” [which, Steichen shows, really means worship of the self] ). Laxity in community prayer, especially Eucharistic prayer, soon followed. Next came permissive new rules and refusal to obey ecclesiastical authorities. [On those few occasions when ecclesiastical authority has intervened, instead of trumpeting and championing the revolution] Finally, feminism flowed in to fill the void where faith had lived. “I will not serve” has become their common message. Examples can be cited in a wide range of communities.
As I said, I think that’s about as good an explanation as I have read, and could apply equally well to male as female religious, though in reality, most of the men’s orders never really overcame the original infection of modernism and were generally (Jesuits) the leaders in the revolution.
Readers are probably aware of St. Alphonsus’ old adage (perhaps borrowed from Aquinas): “one bad book can ruin a monastery.” In the pre-conciliar period, Church authorities were encouraging, and in some cases even demanding, religious be exposed not just to one bad book but to entire libraries full of them. It must be said that Pius XII, who many view as the “last good Pope” (simply because he had nothing to do with the Council, I reckon), was a prime promoter of women religious’ exposure to Catholic and secular wolves. He certainly did so with good intentions in mind, but we all know what the road to hell is paved with. Vatican II could not have happened without the steady erosion of orthodoxy (especially in academia) and increasing tolerance of abuse that occurred on his watch (in his defense, he did have a number of other pressing matters to occupy his attention, such as WWII and opposing communism, the latter of which became virtually the sole concern of the last 10 years of his papacy). History has shown that the women’s religious education initiative was a catastrophic experience for most of the religious concerned and for the Church at large. Good and obedient students always, these former nuns obeyed their modernist instructors and became quite willing disciples of this “synthesis of all heresies.” It will take generations for Catholic religious life to recover.
It’s probable, however, that the general trends in society would have gradually infected some of the religious communities eventually, especially those with active apostolates, even without the forming of nuns in modernism. But I doubt the rot would have set in so quickly and deeply in that case. Most of the women religious sent for the highest education, and thus exposure to the most revolutionary, anti-Catholic ideals, were leaders in their communities. Obedience being what it is, they then turned entire orders over to neo-modernist paganism.
So here’s a question: was education turned into a form of idol, and the destruction of so many religious orders (and their baleful influence on so many souls) a form of punishment from God for that idolization? What need does a contemplative nun have for a master’s or PhD, especially when virtually the entire higher education apparatus in the Western world is implacably hostile to God and any form of orthodox Christianity?
I could go full-provocative mode, and ask if women really possess the critical-thinking skills and ability to stand out from the herd to merit college education? Why is radical feminism experiencing a huge resurgence in recent years, as young millenial women, who make up 60% of the college student body at present, are radicalized on campus in their fluffy soft majors? I should add that I feel quite strongly that college has become not the realm of a relatively few truly bright individuals, but just one more hoop everyone is supposed to jump through. As such, it has become watered down, both in terms of the education received and the value of the degree. I would rather see the ranks of the college educated in general shrink tremendously in size – I think we would be amazed the degree to which leftist influence in society waned if such were to occur. I see little point in going $200k in debt for a degree in queer theory or English.
Put another way: is it possible that God really does intend primarily for women to be wives, mothers, and homemakers, and any large scale deviation from that plan will only bring pain and suffering? In response to these last hypotheticals, I hope some ladies respond.
Of course they are, it’s not about the incremental victories, it’s about completely crushing any and all opposition. The rationalization – or really, mass hypnosis – can admit no dissent, lest it shatter of its own internal contradictions. Eventually it will, of course, anyway: God and nature can only be fooled for so long. Coupled with their desire to receive joyous affirmation from all and the silencing of any stubborn resistance, living a life so directly contrary to God and the natural laws He has instituted also feeds a gnawing discontent that never really goes away. Thus, we have the most miserable, angriest victors ever:
George Takei went on a racist rant Monday in an interview in Phoenix, unleashing on conservative Justice Clarence Thomas in response to Thomas’ comments regarding the Supreme Court decision on gay marriage, NewsBusters reported.
“He is a clown in blackface sitting on the Supreme Court. He gets me that angry. He doesn’t belong there,” Takei said, later adding, “This man does not belong on the Supreme Court. He is an embarrassment. He is a disgrace to America. I’ll say it on camera.”
Takei’s rage came in light of the Justice’s contrary stance on the recent equal marriage decision, where the Court ruled 5-4 that the Constitution guarantees a right to same-sex marriage. Thomas released a statement saying that the government does not grant human dignity, and as such cannot take it away. Thomas argued that human dignity is inherent, and that the Supreme Court cannot issue it.
Why pick on Thomas? I know he earns special ire from leftists because he’s a man of African descent who has gone off the demonrat plantation, but his criticism of the decision was hardly the strongest. I’d say Scalia and Alito, the two strongest Catholics on the Supreme Court, had the most critical dissents. Scalia absolutely eviscerated the majority and stated that this country is no longer a democracy (in which case, maybe he should consider resigning, as Ann Barnhardt
suggests demands screams?). Why isn’t Takei going after him? Could it be that progressives are really projecting their own personal racism in all that super-secret dog-whistle racism they attribute to more conservative types?
George Takei is a little, little man. No kidding, I had dinner with him at County Line barbeque (on the hill) in Austin back in 1991. This was after the only Star Trek convention I ever attended (don’t ask, but those are exactly the kind of people who are feverishly progressive about things like pseudo-sodo-marriage). My friend thought it’d be a lark to be the only two normal people at the convention. We weren’t, not quite, but it was pretty close. A lot of special snowflakes and brittle Bettys there. Anyway, they had some drawing for having dinner out with major star George Takei, Sulu from Star Trek, and somehow we were two of six to win. So we went out to dinner with him, a couple of the convention organizers and the other 4.
When I say he’s little, I mean literally – the guy can’t be more than 5’2″. My mom is that height, and he could not have been any taller. But his stature was one of the least aspects of his smallness. I was going to say a whole bunch more, but I’ll pretty much leave it at this – have you ever been around someone whose every thought centers on themselves, who are literally incapable of imagining that the entire universe does not revolve around them? That was my experience of George Takei.
Maybe he just had a bad day. I should pray for him.
And I actually like a lot of Star Trek. Not nearly so much as I used to, since I came to recognize all the socialist propagandizing (especially in STTNG) and leftist cultural proselytizing, but some of the early episodes were quite good as were some of TNG – like the Borg and Q. I think Star Trek Deep Space 9 with the multi-season Dominion War saga and especially Elim Garak, my favorite Star Trek character of all time, was very good in that saga while being really bad just about everywhere else (intergalactic baseball? Vics? Please). Since then it’s really gone to crud, I could not stand either Voyager or Enterprise (and I don’t count the JJ Abrams product), but I’m hardly a hater. I went into that dinner quite excited at meeting a major Star Trek character, even if he had done almost nothing before or since. Boy was I let down.
Personal rant concluded. It’s hardly just Takei, he’s one example of hundreds.
Our God………He is great. Last night was another awesome experience praying outside the so-called Men’s Club. And I believe our efforts, still so nascent, are really starting to have an effect.
We had the largest crowd yet last night. No, there weren’t hundreds, but it was a good sized crowd. We are very noticeable. And we’re starting to bother the management and patrons of this sexually oriented business.
You may remember from our last vigil that a “dancer” was obviously troubled by our presence and came out trying to justify herself. She was very nice and brought us water but it was plain that we had gotten to her just a bit.
Well, last night, in what you might call a step up, what I’m sure was the manager came out and accosted me. We had quite a little exchange. He was dressed very slick and hip, but really came off as a pimp (several guys noted that feature). He reminded me a great deal of a guy I used to know who was in just that awful racket for a while. Anyway, he asked what we were doing, or what we were protesting, and I said we weren’t protesting anything, just praying. Then he said I assume you are Catholics by your Rosary beads, and after I confirmed that fact, he launched into a tirade, using the foulest language possible, regarding the priest boy-rape scandal. As an aside, it will be decades before we stop having that thrown in our face in literally every exchange we have with the Church’s enemies. My first response was……..can’t you come up with something more original than that?
I guess he was expecting me to defend the priests or try to explain away the scandal, but I told him I was as scandalized and heart-broken by it as anyone. I asked why he thought I as a Catholic would not be the one most hurt by it, when we try to love and reverence our priests so much, and so depend on them, only to be let down in the worst say imaginable. He tried to back off at that point, since I had blown his prime avenue of attack out of the water, but then I asked him why he was over there talking with us, and whether we had pricked his conscience? He said we could do what we wanted but that we were wasting our time, in that “what goes on in there” is “not bad” and there are more important things we could be spending our time on. He asked me why I wasn’t helping a homeless woman who had addled by, and I told him we had……..good man Kevin K had seen to that already.
What this was all about was self-justification. He kept trying to find areas where he could try to assert moral authority over us, or at least try to establish some kind of equivalence – see, he might fail in this area, but I fail in another, so aren’t we all really equal? He said he volunteered at some homeless shelter and asked why he had never seen me there. I said there are lots of ways to help people and our parish is very generous. I also said we’re attached to a particular part of the Church where there is no evidence at all of any priest sex abuse. At some point it came out that he believed in God and was opposed to pseudo-sodo-marriage (I was a bit surprised by that), but he of course through out that sinner’s standby: judge not, lest ye be judged. I said we weren’t judging anyone, that Our Lord does the judging, and He Himself said that those who look on women not their wives with lust in their hearts are guilty of adultery. I asked him if he accepted that Truth, and he said he did not. And thus the reason for the collapse of this culture is revealed. Pick and choose belief, self-justification, I’m OK you’re OK, and no one goes to hell except those judgy Christofascists (a perfect inversion of reality).
I basically told him we just wanted that place gone. We don’t want that in our town. Those kinds of places are the start of the slippery slope down to things like contraception, abortion, pseudo-sodo-marriage, prostitution (why would there be cheap motels all around the place?), and all the rest. We oppose it because it’s evil, and wrong, and is a blight on our city. There are plenty of Catholics outside abortion mills and working in soup kitchens and all that…….but this is our mission.
At that point he left. I tried to get his name but he did not give it. Later on a security guard named Mike came over. He was very nice and just kind of bantered a bit. Pray for him, that he may find a better job.
I’m convinced we’re starting to freak the denizens of that place out. We’re having an impact. I am so thankful to all the men who come out. This is an enormous spiritual work of mercy.
I haven’t shared the best part yet. This is the mystical, miraculous part. So yesterday was the Feast of the Precious Blood. One of the men was praying that the Precious Blood would wash over this SOB and cleanse it of all evil and sin. When he started praying that, all the exterior lights went out! And they stayed out for the rest of the time we were praying. This was well after dark. A few minutes after we stopped praying, they came on……..I guess we should have stayed all night.
I am just amazed by the generosity of these men who come out and brave being gawked at (we had a lot of picture takers last night, a lot of open mouth stares from people driving by), accosted by homeless, and who knows what from the increasingly unsettled creatures who descend into that black hole of Calcutta across the street. You guys really inspire me. Our prayers are having a big effect. I am definitely going to step the operation up to twice a month. I do think the next vigil will be on a Friday night – I’m targeting Friday July 17 at 8:30 pm right now. Thank you all for your participation.
Your prayers from afar also help a great deal. Please keep them up. Please remember us when we’re out there. I am convinced God endorses this effort and He knows where it will lead. We are doing good work and will have to keep the pressure up!