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In a Church in Chaos, Don’t Let Perfect Be the Enemy of Good Enough October 17, 2019

Posted by Tantumblogo in asshatery, blogfoolery, Dallas Diocese, error, foolishness, General Catholic, Latin Mass, pr stunts, sadness, self-serving, Society, the struggle for the Church, Tradition, Virtue.
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An article appeared at the generally strong Federalist a few weeks ago, which surprisingly centered on a disgruntled TLM-er – or former traddie – listing the manifest failures of the TLM parish from their point of view.  It seemed to me a rather strange choice for The Federalist, as they normally do politics from a reliably right wing perspective and most often are out there excoriating Never Trumpers, and rightly so.  But, whatevs.   You should read the whole thing.  I’d appreciate your insight on it.

Now, a few things up front. I happen to know the author.  Not really, but I’ve seen him.  He’s been around pretty regularly for several years.  I think he was in one of the choirs at one point. I don’t think I’ve ever spoken to him. And, the parish he was criticizing was my own, or, at least, given that he regularly assisted there off and on for years I’d tend to think it figured largely in his thinking.   I say that out front to let you know that I have a bit of a vested interest in this matter– this is the parish I have chosen to plight my troth with and raise my children in.  I am well aware of the limitations of traditional Catholicism generally in this time of unprecedented crisis, and of the priestly fraternity that operates the parish I attend, and of the parish itself.  The author, Auguste Meyrat, repeats many of the shopworn criticisms of traditional parishes – an ostensible lack of charity, the people are “weird” or “extreme” (but that tattooed, plate-lipped RCIA instructor at Our Lady of Feelin’ Good is groovy), not enough involvement or social outlets for single people in particular, etc.

All this could be taken as a given.  Virtually any parish, anywhere, that has not been led by Saint X, has suffered general lack of virtue.  That is our human nature. Even the parishioners of St. Jean Marie Vianney were the objects of constant, stinging rebukes from that great Saint, and his people were, especially after the first few years, souls who had been formed and influenced by someone virtually all the parishioners knew would be canonized someday.  This is the nature of any moderately sized grouping of people.  Souls gonna sin.  It’s our nature.  That doesn’t mean we don’t constantly strive for improvement.  Of course we do, and we need to hear correction from time to time, especially from our priests, who know our collective and individual failings far better than any layman ever could.

But that’s not my principle problem with this piece criticizing my parish.  My principle problem is the tone, the overall nastiness of the criticisms, the sense of entitlement, and the overweening lack of gratitude present.  To take a few examples (my comments):

………….TLM parishes can sometimes become unwelcoming places that feel more like strange cults than normal Catholic communities.” [oh?  What does a “normal” Catholic community feel like?]

……….This stance often makes some traditional Catholics weird, for lack of a better word. In their minds, countless Freemasons lurk in the shadows, the South really will rise again, monarchy is the ideal form of government, all music after 1700 is sinful, and the “Lord of the Rings” trilogy is the greatest work of literature after the Bible. [Huh.  I find Tolkein boring.  Sorry.  I got 50 pages into The Hobbit and quit.  Funny the author just quoted Taylor Marshall’s Infiltration (I did not include), and now drops this remark about Freemasons.  The South will what?  Monarchy?  Music what? What the heck are you talking about?  Speaking of, the author quotes Father Ripperger lovingly, and yet Father Ripperger has a lot negative to say about virtually any 20th century music.  So which is it?]

They believe the mainstream church is a disgrace, and everything outside the church is an apocalyptic wasteland. In response, they hope to create isolated, self-sustaining communities to buffet the tides of immorality and impiety surrounding them. [Yeah. Exactly.  Seriously, that’s one of the best descriptions for why I’m a traditional Catholic. It’s like the first rule of medicine – first, do no harm.  Protect what you have.  Defend your family.  Most of us find we have more than enough to fill our time doing just that. But some of us do occasionally make efforts to convert the wider culture.]

The more normal traditional Catholics at these parishes often go to great lengths to contain the nuttiness. [Really. Explain how.] Depending on the parish and the priests running it, they may succeed, or else they may find themselves falling into the same patterns. Without occasional outside contact, there is no reality check. [We live in a time where “outside contact” is practically unavoidable.  Be it radio, TV, internet, co-workers, neighbors, family, shopping, etc, the most insulated Catholics of today probably encounter 100 times as many people in a year than the most outgoing villagers and isolated farmers – the normative Catholic of 1700 – did.  This is silly.  Note also the author siting himself with the “normals.”  In this time of rampant sodomy, four year old transvestites, baby murder, drug addiction, unconstrained usury and rapacious capitalism, etc……..is that what’s being called “normal?”]

I could go on, but I’ll desist (in fact, I left out some of the harshest stuff).  I think you have by now gotten the tenor of the piece, and why I take exception to it.  It’s painting with a very coarse brush, and does not give anywhere near the exculpation for supposedly strange Trad behaviors that people might rightly deserve – such as the trauma at seeing friends and loved ones consumed and destroyed by this culture, the hatred and vitriol directed at them by the institutional Church, the destructive errors emanating from virtually every Novus Ordo pulpit every Sunday (let alone Rome and this pope, which the author essentially ignores or downplays to a level of insouciance) that lead souls to destruction in this life and in the next.  Again, I could go on and on.  If some Trads are extreme, if they tend towards a bit of strange behavior, perhaps they could be forgiven, for the damage they’ve incurred and the treatment they’ve been exposed to.

My real riposte to Meyrat, however, would be compared to what ideal are the current afficianados of the TLM so deficient?  Compared to some other parish?  Some Novus Ordo parish, perhaps?  If that’s the case, I’d say there is much more going on here than just a bit of concern about bad attitudes evidenced from time to time.

Or perhaps the comparison is to some hypothetical ideal that exists only in the author’s mind?  I suspect that’s the more likely.  Certainly, compared to some real Catholic communities that have existed, led by exceptional souls cooperating with grace in superhuman ways that have been the ideals towards which all Catholic communities have pointed for 2000 years, every Trad parish falls short.  Of course, so does every Novus Ordo parish, and to a remarkably greater degree.   Those past communities were led by people who now have “Saint” in front of their names.  These saintly communities rarely had to deal with both a culture and a Church in such utter, deplorable crisis and moral depravity.  But, nevertheless, if this is the ideal the author, strongly influenced, it seems, by Father Chad Ripperger, holds, then so be it.  This is rightly the ideal towards which all Catholic communities should aim.

But I still take exception to the type and manner of criticisms made.  I don’t think it’s helpful for people to be made fun of or made to seem ridiculous for failing to live up to the very highest standards of Catholic formation and community life of the past 2000 years, and I think to some extent that’s what’s going on here. In addition, the piece as a whole had far too much of the sense of an almost anthropological examination of some strange tribe, some “other” to be analyzed and criticized, but not joined or properly understood, rather like the author viewed himself as somehow above or separate from the community.

And that’s another point.  Our family has been very involved in this parish for 10 years.  My wife, particularly, knocks herself out, especially with regard to the high school co-op.  I’ve done a thing or two myself.  This is my biggest problem with Mater Dei.  While the parish has grown from 300 to 1800 in 10 years, the same 30 people seem to do 90% of the labor at the parish.  That’s not entirely true, speaking totally extemporaneously, out of every 100 new parishioners about 1 or 2 will come on board and really help out.  It’s a lot easier to just sit back and criticize and find fault, than to join in and help out and build up.  What?

The author was worried that weirdo trads are going to keep the TLM phenomenon from growing.  I think his analysis is quite off here, too. First, we can only plant, God alone gives the increase, but I think these pieces excoriating wide swaths of the TLM movement as strange, mean, and ugly do far more to keep souls away than the behavior of the 3 or 5% of stereotypical angry old Trads.  While I wouldn’t exactly describe this piece at The Federalist as being another circular firing squad amont Trads, it comes close, and does probably more harm than good, certainly more than the author intended.  In fact, I think broad criticisms like this are singularly unhelpful, especially published in a secular venue where lack of nuance can easily lead large numbers of people to develop the wrong idea.

I would also add that it is remarkable that for such deficient community, it is amazing that Mater Dei has managed to grow 600% over the past decade.  If the souls assisting at Mater Dei were anything like the author describes, that growth would have been impossible.  Virtually any other parish, Novus Ordo or TLM, would love to have had such growth over the same timeframe.  I don’t think that is accidental, or would have been possible with such a toxic community as described in the piece.   The same goes for the other regional TLMs in Tyler, Fort Worth, Houston, and Oklahoma City, to varying degrees.

Alright, I’m done defending my parish.  It’s not that I think this parish, or TLM parishes in general, are above criticism.  Certainly, I’ve had some things to say in the past, but generally much more specific and to the point.  It’s more that I think this particular criticism was off base, and may have said a bit more about the author than it did the parish.  Naturally, in matters such as this, your mileage may vary.  If the author had other parishes in mind when crafting this piece, my analysis still applies, though somewhat less forcefully and specifically.  I think the trope of “mean old trads” and traditional Catholic moral deficiences – as a group, as opposed to individuals – needs to die, or at least be something we see far, far less of.  Or of which we see far, far less, for the English teachers out there.

Notable Events: Blessed Karl Symposium in Dallas and Pontifical High Mass at Mater Dei October 15, 2019

Posted by Tantumblogo in awesomeness, Basics, Christendom, Dallas Diocese, episcopate, fightback, General Catholic, Glory, Grace, Latin Mass, Restoration, Society, Tradition, true leadership, Virtue.
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The first Pontifical High Mass, of which I am aware, in Dallas for over 50 years is to be held this Sunday, October 20th at Mater Dei Latin Mass parish in Irving.  The Mass is at 9am.  The 11:30 high Mass is cancelled for this day.  Principal celebrant of the Mass will be His Excellency the Auxiliary Bishop of Astana in Kazakhstan, Athanasius Schneider.  Seating will be very limited.  Seating opens at the conclusion of the 7am Mass and will probably be filled within minutes.  There is spillover seating in the hall and cry room.  The Mass is projected to last approximately 3 hours.

The reason for Bishop Schneider’s visit is the Blessed Karl Symposium being held the previous day at St. Patrick Catholic Church in Dallas.  This is an annual symposium which began last year and is attracting significant personages of the Church and the former imperial family.  Bishop Schneider will be the keynote speaker at this symposium.  The local man who has gone to great effort to begin these symposiums last year and greatly expand the one this year is to be greatly commended.  This kind of work contributes significantly to the re-seeding of the great Catholic Tradition and the forgotten patrimony of the Church.  It appears that tickets for this year’s symposium, like last’s, are sold out.

Nevertheless, details below.

Finally, a brief talk from Bishop Schneider, given at Rome very recently, and attended by Cardinals Muller, Burke, Arinze, and others.  Michael Matt presents this as a budding “resistance movement” to the current pontificate.  If so, I’m afraid it may be several years late, but better now than never, I suppose.  The talk by Bishop Schneider makes clear that he, for one, sees grave theological delicts emanating from the current synod and rejects both its premises and its pre-determined outcomes (barring, of course, some dramatic divine intervention).

The Mass is likely to be crazy but I’ve never been to a pontifical high Mass and I wouldn’t miss this one!  I will try to record the sermon and share it with you if the quality is passable.  I have to think at least a little bit of Bishop Schneider’s talk below will wind up in the sermon we hear on Sunday, God willing.

Ligouri: The Ruin of Souls Who Through Shame Omit to Confess Their Sins October 3, 2019

Posted by Tantumblogo in Basics, catachesis, General Catholic, Interior Life, priests, reading, Sacraments, sadness, scandals, Tradition, Virtue.
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In light of this post from last week, I recently read the following excerpt from one of Alphonsus Maria de Ligouri’s great Ascetical Works and it was a perfect treatise on the matter of invalid confessions, and reasons for them.  Of course, Saint Alphonsus is the great Moral Doctor of the Church.  He is widely considered to be the single greatest authority on moral theology in the Church’s 2000 year history.

One hugely important post I failed to make in last week’s postfor a confession to be valid, EVERY mortal sin, in kind and number, committed since the last VALID confession, MUST be conveyed to the priest, or the confession is invalid, and every subsequent reception of the Blessed Sacrament in this foul state is sacrilegious and, in itself, a mortal sin, as was the original invalid confession.  Thus, if someone were to string out a long history of mortal sins over, say, 10 confessions, he would subsequently have to confess those 10 invalid confessions, and the 10 or 50 or 70 sacrilegious communions in the interim.  In fact, the longer a sin remains unconfessed for reasons of shame, the less likely it is that it will ever be confessed.  Thus, it is always best to confess all sins as soon as possible, both to alleviate the threat of damnation, but also to strike while the positive effects of shame are motivating the soul to seek forgiveness of its greivous offenses against God.

Saint Alphonsus repeatedly declared that more souls are lost through shame and subsequent invalid confessions than virtually any other reason.  Many Saints personally related mystical experiences of souls of the damned who lamented their sacrilegious, invalid confessions.

Now, the great moral Doctor, Ligouri (excerpts from pp. 316-317):

In the missions we should moreover strongly and often inculcate the necessity of overcomign the shame that one feels in confessions one’s sins.  Those who are experienced missionaries know that this cursed shame has been the cause of the loss of innumerable souls………

It is a pity to see how many souls the devil gains by this means, especially in matters concerning impure sins; for he makes th em lose shame at the moment of committing them, and gives this shame back to them when there is qustion of mention ing them in the confessional.  Saint Antoine, speakign of this matter, relates that a holy hermit, seseing one day the devil in the church going among those that wished to confess, asked him what he was doing there: the evil spirit answered: “To induce thse people to commit sin, I have taken shame from them; now I return it to them in order that they may not confess well and properly.”  Saint John Chrysostom also sayhs: “God has given shame to the commission of sin, and confidence to the confession of it. The devil inverts this: he inspires him who sins with confidence before the sin, and with shame afterwards, so that the sin may not be confessed and the soul lost forever.”

Alas! Christian soul, you have sinned; if you do not confess your sins you will certainly be damned. Why then do you not confess your sin?  You answer: “I am ashamed.” Hence, rather than overcome this shame you wish to be condemned for all eternity to the fire of hell? It is a shame to offend so good a God Who has created us; it is not a shame to confess to have offended Him.  But since you do not wish to manifest your sin, refrain at least from going to confession.  To the sin that you have committed do you wish to add the sacrilege of a bad confession?  Do yo know what you are doing when you commit sacrilege?  For the sins on accou nt which you have deserved hel there is no other remedy than the Blood of Jesus Christ, who will purify you if you confess it well; but by concealing your sin, you even tread under foot the Blood of Jesus Christ……….

……….What do you fear?  Ah!, here are no doubt the pretexts that the devil suggests to you, to keep you from confessing:

  1. What wil my confessor say when he hears that I have fallen in such a way?  Well, he will say that you have been weak, as happens to so many others who live in this world; he will say that you did wrong to sin, but that you afterwards performed and admirable deed in overcoming shame to confess your sins.
  2. At least he will not fail to give me a scolding! – oh no, why should he scold you?  Know that confessors cannot have greater consolation than when they hear a person accusing himself of a sin that he has committed; for then he can securely absolve him and deliver him from hell.
  3. I have not enough confidence to manifest this sin to my spiritual Father – Well! Go to confession to another priest of the place or to a stranger.

 

————-End Excerpt————–

Really, folks, your not that special, nor half as “bad” as you think.  The priests have heard it all.  If you go to Confession on Sunday at a busy parish, the priest might hear 80 or 100 confessions that day.  They all run together.  God gives priests special graces to forget what they hear in the confessional.  Most priests, most all the time, literally forget what they heard just moments ago in the confessional.  So don’t worry so much, trust God, and just spill it all.  Kind/type, and number.

The absolutely vital point to remember, is that, no matter what a foolish priest may tell you, you cannot receive the Blessed Sacrament with one unconfessed mortal sin on your soul!  If you do you commit another and worse mortal sin, the sin of profaning the Blessed Sacrament, and, many moral theologians maintain, literally re-crucifying Christ.

 

 

Bishop Burns to Re-Consecrate Diocese to Immaculate Heart of Mary October 2, 2019

Posted by Tantumblogo in awesomeness, Basics, Dallas Diocese, episcopate, General Catholic, Glory, Grace, Our Lady, Tradition, Virtue.
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There will be many public rosaries offered on October 13th, the 102nd anniversary of Our Lady’s final apparition at Fatima and the great Miracle of the Sun.  However, notably, Bishop Burns of Dallas will be leading one such Rosary, along with a procession, and formally reconsecrating the Diocese to Our Lady’s Immaculate Heart on October 13.  The procession starts at Flagpole Hill near White Rock Lake at 2 pm.  Details below.  I think we have a public Rosary already planned here in Irving at roughly the same time, but it is a great blessing that Bishop Burns will again consecrate this Diocese to Our Lady.  I believe his predecessors Bishop Dunne and possibly Bishop Gorman have already made this consecration in the past.  Nevertheless, what a blessed event, and what a positive sign from our bishop.

Dallas_Consecration_and_Rosary

Excellent Video Series on Antonio Salazar September 26, 2019

Posted by Tantumblogo in Basics, Christendom, General Catholic, Glory, history, Restoration, Society, the struggle for the Church, Tradition, true leadership, Virtue.
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Antonio de Oliveira Salazar was the leader, some would say dictator, of Portugal from 1934 until his death in 1968.  Unlike Franco’s Spain, his Catholic corporatist Estado Novo (New State) survived him by several years, finally being wrecked by a coup of mid-grade hard leftist officers of Portugal’s military in 1974.

Salazar and the Estado Novo offer an interesting, and much more Catholic, alternative to what the predominant culture tells us are possible viable forms of government since the mid-20th century – hard leftism or liberal/libertine capitalism.  I’ve never been fully on board with such corporatist/distributist economic systems as outlined by Chesterton and Belloc (among many others) in the first half of the 20th century, as they seemed a bit too utopian to be practical.  But Salazar’s Portugal probably came the closest of any deliberately Catholic state (deliberate in the sense of being constructed to comport as closely as possible to the Church’s social and general magisterial beliefs up to that point in time) in achieving a reasonable mean – being Catholic, but also relatively prosperous, relatively free, and relatively non-tyrannical.  Some of my primary complaints against distributism is that it seemed a fine system for the late 18th century, but probably not too well suited for the 21st century.  Salazar’s Portugal serves as probably the best argument against that complaint.

Regarding a tyrannical state, Salazar’s Portugal was much less violent, as a government, than was the corollary next door in Franco’s Spain.  Of course, the Estado Novo had the incalculable benefit of not being founded in the midst of a brutal civil war.  Even still, however, there was a very powerful leftist faction in Portugal, which had held power several times in the decades preceding 1934, and remained a serious threat through much of Salazar’s time in power.  However, by judicously practicing Catholic Doctrine, the Salazar regime only put about 5 souls to death throughout it’s nearly 40  year existence – a far cry from the tens of thousands that died, or were killed, in Spain, even after the end of the Spanish Civil War.  Now, I’m quite sympathetic to Franco’s government and think its hand was forced by the radical, unyielding leftists it had to deal with – these leftists started the Civl War by attacking the Catholic Faith and massacring hundreds of priests and religious – but it is still an impressive achievement.  Salazar had very nearly as divided and fractious a country to manage as did Franco, but managed to do so with far less bloodshed.

Unfortunately, the quite-detailed video series I post below is not complete.  It only goes until about World War II.  Many of Salazar’s greatest social achievements – the economic rebuilding of Portugal along Catholic corporatist lines – had to wait until after World War II.  The author of the series promises that some new uploads will be coming this fall and winter – I will be sure to share those when they become available.

For now, you can learn a great deal about an important, but deliberately forgotten, leader on the world stage for much of the 20th century.  I say he was deliberately forgotten, because Salazar’s Portugal, like (to varying degrees) Franco’s Spain, and Dolfuss’ and Schussnigg’s Austria, and a few other locales, truly do serve as contrary examples to what we are told was the “only sane choice” in the “inevitable” liberal capitalist state.  Not just contrary examples, but examples that, in many ways, are more just, more moral, and – it can be argued – much  more conducive to the good of souls than the  decaying, decadent, corrupt states we find ourselves in throughout the West today.  In terms of tyranny, how many people does the United States kill each year, either here at home or abroad?  I’m no opponent of the death penalty, but it does make for an illuminating contrast.

I hope you enjoy these videos as much as I have.  Since these videos are difficult to find on Youtube, and since, for some reason, many do not show up on the channel’s playlist, I post them all below.  I knew comparitively little about Salazar’s Portugal before watching these, and most of what I had learned was harshly critical, so these videos will hopefully prove enlightening for you as well.  I know you’ll think, there’s too many, it’ll take too long, history is boooring!!!  Do yourself a favor and watch these, at one sitting or over several months, I think you’ll be pleasantly surprised, especially if you have any interest in Church history:

 

Please Pray for the Repose of the Soul of Jim Middleton [UPDATED] September 18, 2019

Posted by Tantumblogo in Admin, Basics, Dallas Diocese, fightback, Four Last Things, General Catholic, Glory, Grace, Interior Life, Tradition, Virtue.
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[UPDATE]: See the bottom of the post for an addendum from my dad. I very briefly glossed over Jim’s career at Arco and he beefed it up a bit, for all of those interested.  Yes, both of you]

Longtime readers may recall that I was once on a broadcast radio show with Jim and Vicki Middleton.  The show ended in 2012 when Vicki unfortunately passed away rather suddenly.  I think that was a grace of God, I don’t think she could stand to see what this country is becoming today.  She was right about so very much, including the endlessly voracious appetite of the Left for tyranny.  Equally sadly, Jim Middleton, her spouse of many years, passed away this past September 12.  Jim was a very strong and patriotic American, a rock-solid conservative, and a devout Catholic convert.  He was also a gifted engineer and high-level oil executive and played a vital role in opening up the North Slope of Alaska to large scale oil production and later served as President of Arco Oil and Gas.  My dad worked with Jim for 25 years and knew him quite well.

The funeral was held at the Carmelite Monastery in Dallas, the same monastery that served host as the site of the diocesan Mater Dei Traditional Latin Mass community for many years prior to Mater Dei getting its own parish (one of the few good acts of the previous bishop of this Diocese, now Cardinal Kevin Farrell. “allowing” Mater Dei to have its own church – such generosity).  Jim and Vicki gave extremely generously to the Carmelite Monastery over the years, and were extremely close with, and helpful towards, the Carmelite nuns.  As such, by a special bequest, the mortal remains of both Jim and Vicki will now repose on the grounds of the monastery.

I was fortunate to be able to attend the Novus Ordo funeral Mass yesterday.  Father Paul Weinberger, who has received a good deal of attention on this blog recently, and who was very close to the Middleton’s and played a great role in their becoming stalwart Catholics from episcopal converts, offered the Mass.  So, yes, it was a Novus Ordo, but it was offered with as much reverence and dignity as is possible with this creation of “modern” man.  The sermon was very solid as usual, as Father Weinberger devoted about half of the 15 minutes to ably destroy a number of protestant talking points against the Faith, such as, we do not worship images, works done in concert with Grace are necessary for salvation, the communion of saints and the existence of purgatory, and so forth.  Since the attendance was at least 50% protestant, that was no small act, but was conducted with such charity and finesse that rather than rankle his sermon elicited a number of laughs and smiles.

Vicki and Jim were good souls and gave tremendously of their time, talent, and treasure for the good of the Church and souls.  They deserve a prayer or two, or many.  I pray I never forget them in my prayers for the souls of the deceased.

A few poor photos from the Mass.  I thank the good Carmelite sisters for again opening their chapel, as they regularly do.  I with them well and they may be assured of my prayers, too!

[Addendum]:

When the north slope was being developed, it was still a part of NAPD (North American Producing Division).  Billy Jack Lancaster headed NAPD.  Middleton was in charge of a special engineering group whose job was to fabricate the production modules and barge them from Ingleside to Point Barrow, and then offload them onto gravel causeways and roll them onto the slope.  Billy Jack smoked himself to death and died of lung cancer.  Bill Keeler head of Engineering for NAPD replaced Billy Jack.  Keeler’s 16 year old son killed Bill and his wife.  Ken Dickerson and Jim Coffee (lawyers) quickly popped the kid into Timberlawn and he never served a day in jail for the murders.  Dallas had no more men in the line of succession.  NAPD had always operated independently of Corporate (which was in LA), primarily because they generated 125% of the Corporations income.  Not no more. This opening gave LA a chance to put their own man in charge.  Then picked Glen Simpson who managed the Alaska operations – – he was a former Sinclair hand and followed orders well.  He was a rigid disaster.

Meanwhile, Middleton was placed in charge of Anaconda (a mining operation that was, unbeknownst to ARCO, badly losing money at the time they bought it), and he stopped it from hemorrhaging cash.  By that time NAPD had become Arco Oil and Gas, along with Arco Exploration and Arco Alaska.  When Simpson was forced out, Jim became President of AOGC.  He did a hell of a good job, and always backed me to the hilt.

I add, it was after Jim retired in 1994 that ARCO quickly went downhill, and its management sold out to BP in a panic in 2000.  The only remnant of ARCO today is its chain of gas stations on the West Coast and in Arizona.

Catholic Video Channels You Should be Perusing September 10, 2019

Posted by Tantumblogo in awesomeness, Basics, catachesis, episcopate, fightback, General Catholic, Glory, Grace, Interior Life, Restoration, sanctity, Spiritual Warfare, the struggle for the Church, Tradition, true leadership, Virtue.
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This post may contain old news for many readers, but I thought it should be mentioned that the quality of Catholic commentary in video form continues to increase.  While Youtube may be a wholly owned subsidiary of a parent company staffed by many of the most despicable people on earth – Google – it does host some very good Catholic content, at least until Google decides these good people are gaining too much traction, and ban-hammers them off their platform (Bitchute is a good alternative, but  it does contain quite a bit of wacky and even dangerously immoral content, but so does most everything else these days).  Right now, for this particular blogger, probably the best traditional/tradition-leaning Catholic channel on  Youtube (overall) is that of Dr. Taylor Marshall.  I’m a bit surprised at coming to this conclusion, for while I have known Taylor and his family for years in passing through our local TLM parish, for many years I wasn’t a huge fan.  His content seemed to tend towards the conservative/neo-Catholic for quite some time.  So while he did do some great works like being a or the founder of the Troops of St. George, I found him a bit squishy on a number of topics, especially those closest to the core elements of the traditional critique of the post-conciliar Church.

But that was then.  Starting about 12-18 months ago, and especially in the wake of the Vigano expose and the Church’s “summer of shame” (hint: there will be worse to come, much worse), Taylor really got red-pilled and became quite a hard-hitting critic of the crisis in the Church.   His views generally align quite closely with my own, which of course means he is absolutely right about purt’ near everything.  Seriously, I don’t want to overplay my criticism of the Taylor of 5 years ago, he was generally solid all along, but over the past year he’s really been clobbering the evil forces acting within and against Holy Mother Church.   I now make a point of catching all of his videos as early as I can, and agree with most everything both Dr. Marshall and his co-host Dr. Tim Gordon have to say (but not quite – sadly, noone is quite so perfect as me).  They are addressing most all the major crisis issues in the Church today and doing so from a steadfastly traditional viewpoint, and not pulling any punches over sacred cows like the current occupant of the papacy, the heresies emanating from Rome in these dark days, and the root of the crisis beginning far before Vatican II.  I still hope to put together a real magnum opus (hah) podcast on that subject, but baby steps.

Another great source which I have highlighted before is the inestimable Charles Coulombe.  I love his weekly uploads at Tumblar House and find his talks, if possible, even more edifying than those of Taylor Marshall.  Charles is both a rock with regard to the Faith, and is especially strong on the absolutely vital issue of Extra Ecclesiam Nulla Salus (I cannot recommend his book on the subject enough, it is eye-opening, even for one well-versed in Trad literature), and is also a veritable fount of knowledge on matters related to Church history and Catholic culture (rather unlike the website of the same name).  It is well worth your time to dedicating an hour or so a week listening to his Youtube videos.  While Taylor’s viewership has exploded, Coulombe’s remains relatively static, which is a real shame, because his commentary is equally deserving of a far wider audience.

Next, there is another source I’ve recommended many times, but it bears repeating:  The Fatima Center.  Even with the untimely deaths of Fr. Nicholas Gruner and Mr. Charles Vennari, they regularly upload, almost weekly, very good catechetical materials from extremely traditional sources.  I find especially the videos from Fr. Isaac Mary Relyea edifying and entertaining.

Then, there is Return to Tradition by Anthony Stine.  A bit like Taylor Marshall’s content, it is both contemporary and topical.  In fact, one might liken it sort of a pocket version of Taylor’s much longer broadcasts, covering many of the same topics from a generally similar view (though, of course, they differ in a number of details) but in a much shorter format.  It’s a worthy site, especially his excerpts from Church doctrinal documents in his weekend uploads, but in terms of preference is probably properly listed in terms of order in this post.  HIs production values are of a bit lower standard than the other three.

And, of course, there remains the grand-daddy of all Catholic Youtube channels of which I am aware, that of Sensus Fidelium and the daily uploads of sermons from very solidly orthodox and traditional priests.  I’m certain most all readers will be aware of this channel already.

And now, good listeners, I turn the floor over to you, to solicit other “channels” you may find worthwhile on Youtube or other, similar platforms.  One problem today is the veritable embarrassment of riches, it is difficult at times to keep up with more than a few channels, especially when they produce prodigious amounts of content like Dr. Marshall and Sensus Fidelium. I of course also enjoy the weekly commentaries from Michael Matt at The Remnant, and some other less explicitly Catholic but more historical efforts that still tie in with the Church’s proud history.  Nevertheless, I would appreciate any recommendations you have, especially for solid but lesser known channels.

I have another, far more obscure channel to bring to your attention at a later date, God willing, but that is such a different topic and requires an extensive introduction, and so it must  wait for another time.

 

Diocese News: Good Father Paul Weinberger Reassigned from St. William in Greenville to St. Monica in Dallas [UPDATED] September 6, 2019

Posted by Tantumblogo in Dallas Diocese, General Catholic, Holy suffering, Latin Mass, Liturgy, manhood, priests, Restoration, sanctity, Tradition, Virtue.
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[UPDATE: COMMENTS CLOSED.  You people know I have your e-mails and IPs, right?  It’s kind of obvious when you all use the same one. This campaign of character assassination will not be permitted to continue.]

This is one of those sad/happy, good news-bad news kinda things.  Good local priest Father Paul Weinberger (as to the good, you can find several instances of this by searching his name on this blog) has been reassigned from his role as pastor of St. William parish in Greenville, on the periphery of the Diocese, to St. Monica parish in north Dallas.  I just spoke with Father Weinberger, and he advises that he will be priest in residence at Saint Monica, and will serve publicly there offering Mass and Confession, but only after a period of personal time in which he takes care of some long-delayed matters related to the estates of his deceased parents.

I say this is good news/bad news because it is bittersweet anytime a priest is reassigned, especially one that had been so long at one parish as Father Weinberger had.  He had been at St. William about 18 years and had expressed hopes of serving there for the rest of his priestly ministry. In that time, many families had moved to the Greenville area to enjoy both a more rural manner of living and to take advantage of Father Weinberger’s very solid catechesis, reverent liturgy, and abundant Confession. Obviously many of those people are very sad to see Father Weinberger go.  Father Weinberger is being replaced by one of the Diocese’s younger priests, Father Edwin Leonard.

But now, Father Weinberger is moving on to St. Monica, a centrally located and well known parish, where many more souls may take advantage of his gifts.  I’m certain he will be well received.  Whether Father Weinberger will be offering Latin Mass at St. Monica or publicly performing other devotions such as the nightly Rosary processions and frequent confessions is not known at this time (uh, because I forgot to ask).

Our family attended St. William for several years before eventually, and not without some sadness, moving on to Mater Dei and the full time Traditional Latin Mass.  We have missed Father Weinberger over the years and look forward to being able to see him again, now that he is much closer to Irving. It was a nearly hour to drive out to Greenville, now he’ll only be about 15 minutes away.

Please pray for Father Weinberger and the parishioners of St. William. Losing a long time beloved priest can be very painful. I understand that at least some of the families will be traveling to Mater Dei on Sundays, so you Mater Dei readers be on the lookout for new faces (I know……..which ones?)!  I will provide updates on Father Weinberger and his service at St. Monica as they become available.

Michael Matt – Unite the Traditional Clans! August 26, 2019

Posted by Tantumblogo in awesomeness, Basics, fightback, General Catholic, Glory, Grace, Restoration, sanctity, SSPX, the struggle for the Church, Tradition, true leadership, Virtue.
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I have learned over the past few months that I have missed an incredible amount of infighting between traditional/orthdox Catholics.  In fact I haven’t missed it at all, I’m glad I haven’t had to witness all that.  With Francis continuing to try to change the Bride of Christ into a pathetic, modernist worldly construct, a creation not of God but of men,  never has there been a greater need for unity among the most devout, believing Catholics, whatever they call themselves.  I have long been of this opinion, which I share with such stalwart defenders of the Faith as Fathers Michael Rodriguez and Isaac Mary Relyea, two men who have suffered more than most of us will ever have to for their rejection of the post-conciliar construct.

There are legitimate criticisms of, or concerns regarding, all branches of traditional Catholicism in these days.  That is one of the chief  coups of the modernists dominating the hierarchy of the Church, to use Catholics own faith and fidelity to the Magisterium against them.  By corrupting that magisterium, they have managed to put Catholics in a “damned if they do, damned if they don’t situation.”  While the SSPX seems to be slowly leaning towards some kind of formal recognition from Rome (and some would argue it already exists), there remains great hostility in the institutional Church to them, and much fussiness over their purported canonical status.  The Ecclesia Dei communities and diocesan priests offering the TLM forever have to live with the taint of ostensible accommodation, and the constant threat that all they have achieved and built over the past several decades could be snatched away in an instant by a hostile pope.

Each of the traditional groups has their strengths and weaknesses.  Certainly there is room for legitimate expression of these differences, but the constant internecine struggles between these various groups has long passed the point of ceasing to be productive, and is most often positively destructive. It is so easy for all of us to fall into tribalism and the belief that “our side” is not just the right one, but the only good and decent one.  From that belief can spring all kinds of animus and destructiveness.  It is the ultimate circular firing squad, and could not be more ill-timed or counter-productive, given the collective threats we all face from the current pontificate and the upcoming Amazonian synod. This should be a time of conciliation, not ever-increasing conflict and strife.

Thus, I heartily support Michael Matt in attempting to bring collaboration and commonality of purpose among all those priests, religious, and lay people struggling to live out the Faith in this time of unprecedented crisis within the institutional Church.  Every single growing, vibrant traditional parish is a beacon of hope for millions of those who call themselves Catholic, whether they realize it or not.  They are a hope for the present and the future, and, in my mind, represent the only real future the Church has, by returning to her roots and her real self.  And, if we continue to work together, we can hope for the coming restoration of Holy Mother Church, as Mr. Matt in describing how the FSSP taking over a dying Minneapolis parish has now totally turned the parish around.  He then lists some criticisms of the FSSP, presumedly coming from the SSPX, and proceeds to refute those.  I’m not certain if his piece was in response to something in particular, but the article could just as easily have been framed in the opposite way, defending the SSPX from FSSP criticisms.  I don’t think the particular framing is most important, I think what is most important is the overall message of looking for the good in all the various branches of traditional Catholicism and working together to maximize their effect in terms of saving souls and, even more importantly, giving all glory and honor to God.

I did, however, want to address a few points Mr. Matt raises, which I will do below:

Yes, okay. Fine!  But the FSSP does not condemn Pope Francis on a daily basis.

Again, true enough. But neither did Edmund Campion run around publicly condemning the tyrant and heretics of his day.  Instead, he chose to dress as a layman—a jeweler—and to call himself ‘Mr. Edmunds’ so that he could avoid arrest and carry on with the important work of preserving the old Faith in Elizabethan England. He wasn’t a coward. He was a strategist, who would eventually be starved, beaten, disemboweled and drawn and quartered for his fidelity the old Faith.

It’s called strategy. Maybe you’ve seen pictures. You know, Father Miguel Pro undercover, dressed in suit and tie, as he waged holy war in defense of the old Faith during the Cristero uprising. Dressed in disguise, was Father Pro afraid to ‘say it like it is’? Please!

There’s more than one way to get the job done, friends, and the job right now is to preserve the old Faith at all costs. ‘Sayin it like it is’ in times like these is sometimes just a really stupid thing to do! It’d be like Colonel Claus von Stauffenberg shouting condemnations of the psycho Nazis as he walked into the Wolf’s Lair with a bomb under his arm, preparing to assassinate Hitler. Not a good time for Claus to ‘say it like it is.’

Let’s not shoot ourselves (or the few good priests left) in the head by calling for recklessness when prudence and strategy are obviously working so well to save souls and to attach so many young people to the cause of Traditional Catholic restoration. [These are all fine points, but I will say that I have heard very strong condemnations of Francis from a number of FSSP priests.  And, I have heard similar condemnations from diocesan and other traditional or traditionally inclined priests.  I don’t know if condemnations of this kind are more frequent and severe from SSPX priests, but I will simply note that it would be a falsehood, in my experience, to declare Francis gets a pass from Ecclesia Dei priests.]

Yes, well, the FSSP priests don’t like the SSPX and vice versa.  Maybe that’s true in some cases, but so what!  The Dominicans and the Franciscans didn’t always get along, either……….. [This is the other point I wanted to touch on, it is true, there are some FSSP and other non-SSPX traditional priests who are extremely critical of the SSPX. Some of this criticism, to my mind, goes beyond the bounds of reason. I know the reverse is also widely true.  However,  many FSSP priests have quite warm attitudes towards the SSPX, and are well disposed towards them, generally speaking.  Like all organizations made up of hundreds of passionate, committed people, you’re going to see a variety of points of view.  That may be a milquetoast manner of speaking, but it’s true.  I wish all priests in all these groups were much more supportive and possessed of a common purpose, but at Mr. Matt notes immediately below, all priests are humans and as prone to human failings as the rest of us].

So, there are precedents. We’re all human…even priests.

Bottom line: When I was at Mass last Sunday at the local FSSP parish, I saw dozens of little children kneeling at the consecration, striking their breasts at the elevation, receiving Holy Communion on the tongue in the company of their mothers and fathers and rafts of siblings.

It reminded me of the little Japanese children I’d seen at the SSPX chapel in Tokyo the month before—kneeling at the consecration, striking their breasts at the elevation, receiving Holy Communion on the tongue in the company of their mothers and fathers and rafts of siblings………

…………I’ve said it before, and I’ll say it again: Unite the clans! For God’s sake and the sake of those children facing the real possibility of the eradication of the old Faith from the face of the earth— unite the clans!

I couldn’t agree more, or close on a better note.  We have so much in common, and so much to fight for together, that the differences between us can really take a back seat for the foreseeable future.

By the way, Twitter drives people insaneJust sayin‘.  I can not advise anyone enough to stay off it.  None of my rapidly growing into adulthood kids are on it and, I pray, never will be.

 

Watch Michael Davies, William F. Buckley, and Malachi Martin Completely Dismantle Post-Conciliar Amchurch August 26, 2019

Posted by Tantumblogo in awesomeness, General Catholic, history, Latin Mass, Restoration, Revolution, the struggle for the Church, Tradition, true leadership, Virtue.
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The video below was recorded in 1980.  Michael Davies, God rest his soul, was a young and very charismatic man who had already written several books defending Archbishop Lefebvre and exposing the protestantizing changes in the Mass.  He had also developed ample evidence that the changes were deliberately made to change the belief and practice of believing Catholics in order to turn the Catholic Church into something other than the entity Christ founded our Holy Mother to be.

That evidence comes to the fore repeatedly as a certain Father Joseph Champlin repeatedly tries, in true post-concliar fashion, to so parse and muddy the Faith that not even licentiates in sacred theology could make heads or tails of what the Church was supposed to believe, what the current pope was promoting, or how the Church fell into the general post-conciliar mess.  Certainly it is true that there were a number of factors at work in, for instance, the total collapse in vocations in historically Catholic/Christian countries (lumping the US in that group for convenience), but to pretend that the loss of 50,000 priests and nearly 100,000 religious in a mere 10 years after the close of Vatican II had nothing, or very little, to do with the massive changes imposed on the Faith in the wake of that council is laughable, as Davies and Buckley repeatedly demonstrate. Fr. Champlin, who was part of the disastrously liberal Dioceses of Rochester and Syracuse in New York, repeatedly had to engage in what I found to be deliberate obfuscation and attempts to so parse matters of theology that virtually no one could rightly claim to know what the Church believed, at least beyond what the most recent pope had declared.  He had to do this because both the Council and the post-conciliar popes at various times and places made declarations in open conflict with the well defined, long-declared solemn Doctrine of the Faith.

This was a regular modernist ruse, reducing the Faith to meaningless or practical indeciperable nonsense that no lay person could hope to comprehend, in stark contrast to the clear belief of the pre-conciliar Church.

Anyway the debate is well worth your time and is a helpful time capsule in understanding how the battle over the mind and soul of the Church was fought in its early days. I would say that traditional critiques of the Council, and more particularly, that false “spirit” that came in its wake, have only sharpened and improved since then.

It is also interesting to point out how even at this point – more than 10 years after the implementation of the Novus Ordo – a large majority of Catholics polled indicated their preference in returning to the Mass of the ages.