Let a Thousand Flowers Bloom!

Wednesday, September 30, AD 2015

5 Responses to Let a Thousand Flowers Bloom!

  • a pope who has done and said nothing heterodox

    That’s the rub right there, isn’t it? Because a lot of what he has said and done has some of us appending a yet to that statement, others of us pounding our poor heads like Pooh-bear trying to jog a thought loose, and still others not fully “us” anticipating a new orthodoxy.
    Some of us are in for some profound frustration and disappointment.

  • Mark Shea is a manichean and divides the world into evil people and good people. Isn’t his entire theologocal education fundamentalist? He is always so eager to condemn and accuse as if his fundamentalism has found a new target for who’s going to hell, only now it is anyone who disagrees with his magisterium.

  • “For Mark Shea it is always let a thousand flowers bloom so long as they all smell like him.”

    And what a horrid stench that would be.

  • Mark Shea is basically a leftist. When you read his comments and postings on the subjects he blogs on, it’s obvious he has taken more and more of a leftist position on them as the years go by. Nobody who’s a traditional, conservative Catholic should take this man seriously as a commentator on the Catholic faith or secular politics.

  • Mark Shea should be ignored. I am not going to insult the man or his opinions, but I am not going to waste my time on them either. Mr. McClarey made an honest observation on the Holy Father’s visit and his speeches. Mr.McClarey insulted nobody, banned nobody and told nobody how to run their blogs or business. It is Mr. McClarey who behaved as an adult, not Mark Shea.

    Go to Mass. Pray. Go to Confession and do penance. Pray for the Holy Father, no matter what he says or does

R.R. Reno’s Tirade: The Fisk

Wednesday, September 30, AD 2015

No More Tirades


As my friend and co-blogger Paul Zummo has noted here, First Things has given the ax to Maureen Mullarkey’s blog due to her outspoken criticism of Pope Francis. They have every right to do this if they wish.  However, I have every right to fisk the editor of First Things’, R.R. Reno, statement announcing this, hilariously entitled No More Tirades, if I found the statement fatuous, which I did.  Herewith the fisk:

First Things stands for something.

That is a relief.



Many things, actually.

Considering the heterodox leanings of many people after working at First Things (I am looking at you Damon Linker and you Jody Bottum), I would say that is an understatement.




One of them is a commitment to reality-based conservatism, both in matters of faith and of public life. I mention this, because I’ve decided to end our hosting of Maureen Mullarkey’s blog.

“Reality -based conservatism.”  Way to borrow the charming habit of the left of calling their adversaries delusional.

Maureen has a sharp pen and pungent style. Her postings about Pope Francis indicate she’s very angry about this papacy, which she seems to view as (alternately) fascism and socialism disguised as Catholicism. This morning she put up a post that opens with the accusation that the Vatican is conspiring with the Obama administration to destroy the foundations of freedom and hobble the developed world. I’ve had my staff take it down.

I do not ascribe to the view that Catholics should not criticize the papacy.

Unless, apparently, the criticism is barbed and attracts attention.

When Catholicism was derided by an ascendant Protestant elite, it made sense to close ranks.

Actually, as a matter of historical fact, Catholics in this country have always fought like cats and dogs.

Today we’re very much a part of the elite.

Only if we sneer at our religion.  For those who don’t and who achieve high office, they are under continual assault.  Google Antonin Scalia for a good example of this.


When Francis spoke to Congress, he shook the hands of a Catholic Secretary of State.

The pro-abort John Kerry is about as Catholic as his late senior senator Ted Kennedy.


When he spoke he was flanked by a Catholic Vice President and a Catholic Speaker of the House (who had succeeded a Catholic Speaker).

Pro-abort Joe Biden is on a par with Kerry.  Boehner’s last major action as Speaker is brokering a deal for the continued funding of Planned Parenthood.


In the front row sat Supreme Courts Justices, the majority of whom are Catholic.

This after the Court just mandated gay marriage throughout the nation, with two of the “Catholics” happily signing on.


There’s no cultural need today for Catholics to maintain an artificial united front.

Only if Catholics are concerned about the Faith rather than using Catholicism as some sort of ethnic identifier.

I’ve criticized Pope Francis and his encyclical, Laudato Si. However, Maureen’s commentary on Francis goes well beyond measured criticism.

Measured criticism, like beauty, is in the eye of the beholder.


She consistently treats him as an ideological propagandist, accusing him of reducing the faith to secular political categories.

A sadly accurate assessment in many areas.


This is her way of reducing him to the political terms she favors.

Actually, the Pope by his language and actions has done that.  His speech to Congress, in which he gave a big air kiss to most issues embraced by the left, is a prime example.

And those terms are the ones used by radio talk-show hosts to entertain the public with mock-battles against various Empires of Evil.

You don’t listen to many radio talk shows do you?  Of course when bashing someone on the basis of stereotypes, it does not do to engage in accuracy.

I don’t want First Things to play that game.

Your call, just as it is our call whether we read First Things.  Mullarkey has brought more attention and readers to First Things than any other writer for you in many a moon.

More is at stake here than decorum.

One would hope.

I’m much more favorable to free markets than Francis seems to be.

That is a pretty low bar.

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22 Responses to R.R. Reno’s Tirade: The Fisk

  • “Considering the heterodox leanings of many people after working at First Things (I am looking at you Damon Linker and you Jody Bottum), I would say that is an understatement.”

    You can add Joe Carter’s awful smearing of Marc Theissen when Theissen dared defend the morality of the Bush Administration’s Enhanced Interrogation Program to that list.

  • “Only because America confuses core Catholic teachings with leftist wish lists.”

    A thousand times yes. The cafeteria can only admit cinos. American conservatives who are faithful to the Magisterium get served at another Table.

  • Meanwhile, Mark Shea is smelling blood in the water. (Link is to a donotlink mirror of the Patheos page, so you won’t be rewarding him with pageviews.)

  • “Likewise, sane conservative Catholics need to stop coddling those twisting themselves in pretzels of hatred and defiance for a pope who has done and said nothing heterodox, all in defiance of the Church’s social doctrine need to repent or they need to be repudiated by Catholics of good will. It would be a nice bonus if sane conservatives beyond FT also pressured the nuts to repent smearing a good man as an accomplice to murder (which is what “Che Guevara’s Pope” means) in their zeal to declare their non serviam to the gospel. But the person of Francis is less crucial than the office of Peter and it doesn’t do to ask too much of hard hearts all at once. But the bottom line is, the enemies of Peter need to take responsibility for their actions, repent, and believe the good news–and those who have hitherto enabled them should take responsibility for the fact that they did not spring up like topsies overnight but have been cultivated for a good long time. That cultivation must end.”

    For Mark Shea it is always let a thousand flowers bloom so long as they all smell like him.

  • Oh, sorry. I just saw the Shea article was already linked in PZ’s post.

  • “A Pope has an extremely limited charism of infallibility. Outside of that his ideas stand or fall just like anyone elses.”

    The Pope’s authority extends far beyond the “charism of infallibility.”

    Thus, the Council of Florence teaches, “The Roman Pontiff stands as the true Vicar of Christ, the head of the whole Church and the father and teacher of all Christians; to him has been given, in Blessed Peter, by Our Lord Jesus Christ, the full power of shepherding, ruling and governing the universal Church”
    Also, Vatican I, “We further teach and declare that he is the supreme judge of the faithful, and that in all causes, the decision of which belongs to the Church, recourse may be had to his tribunal, and that none may re-open the judgment of the Apostolic See, for none has greater authority, nor can anyone lawfully review its judgment…” and “If anyone, then, shall say that the Roman Pontiff has the office merely of inspection or direction, and not the full and supreme power of jurisdiction over the Universal Church, not only in things which belong to faith and morals, but also in those which relate to the discipline and government of the Church spread throughout the world; or assert that he possesses merely the principal part, and not all the fullness of this supreme power; or that this power which he enjoys is not ordinary and immediate, both over each and all the Churches and over each and all the Pastors and the faithful; let him be anathema.”
    An excellent illustration of this can be foundin the Formulary Controversy, when Alexander VII imposed a formula on the clergy assenting to a judgment that was not (and could not be) infallible and severing from his communion those who refused it (Ad Sanctam Beati Petri Sedem 16 October 1656 and Regiminis Apostolici 15 February 1664)

  • Pray tell us MPS where any of what you quote binds me to the Pope’s views on global warming, economics or his merchant of deaths cause wars meme?

    Newman on Infallibility clears a lot of the dust kicked up by latter day ultramontanists:


  • And R.R. Reno returns to the oblivion from whence he came. I subscribed to FT for years when I discovered how wonderful Father Neuhaus was. It was such a treat to get it in the mail. I always read the letters to the editor first and was usually impressed with the intelligence of its readership. When Father died, so to did FT. At first I noticed its creeping heterodoxy as far as its conservatism. Then I began to notice its faithfulness to the fullness of truth was becoming less as well. I cancelled my subscription. I’d only really been back to the website for Maureen. I was always shocked they let her post anyway. One PeterFive is much more like FT under Father Neuhaus than FT under Reno is.

  • Pray tell us MPS where any of what you quote binds me to the Pope’s views on global warming, economics or his merchant of deaths cause wars meme?
    You might be waiting a while. As far as I can tell, this is the key point from Michael’s latest Ctrl-V comment:
    …the Roman Pontiff has … the the full and supreme power of jurisdiction over the Universal Church, not only in things which belong to faith and morals, but also in those which relate to the discipline and government of the Church spread throughout the world
    So nothing new: the pope has authority over matters belonging to faith and morals (not climatology or economics or weapons manufacturing or countless other prudential situations) and he is the supreme legislator of the Church. It just sounds better if you wrap it up in a lengthy quote from some historical figure.

  • Pray tell us MPS where any of what you quote binds me to the Pope’s views on global warming, economics or his merchant of deaths cause wars meme?

    It was the French philosopher Marquis de Chardonnay who, in his 18th century tract, “Of the Sublime Universe and its Minions,” spoke of papal infallibility. Like the wings of a dove, soaring over the mountains and over the hills, so to, does the spirit ascend in the wonderful majesty – purple mountains majesty, if you will – of the universe, standing guard and shepherding his flock, seeing to it that no word of error escape from the papal tongue or from his tender fingertips.

    These words would be echoed in the encyclical Hoc non realiter probare intentum, in which the Hessian heresy was stamped out.

  • ….did he ever provide any support for the slander about Cafeteria Catholicism?
    That means picking and choosing among the binding teachings, not what happens to be popular this week.

  • Mac, I don’t have the energy or patience to fisk huge volumes of such stuff. It winds up being two or three times as many words and I still haven’t adequately addressed the totality of distortions, exaggerations, fabrications, fantasies, omissions and outright lies.

    I find the most effective means of addressing such dishonest nonsense is to quote Joe Pesci from the movie, “My Cousin Vinnie.” He succinctly said, “Everything that guy just said is bullshit.” It works for me.

  • To answer your question, Mark — yes, little if any of the Holy Father’s statements re global warming, economic systems, etc., can properly be regarded as infallible, and therefore they certainly can be criticized. But criticism should be measured and reasoned, not angry emoting, which is the practice of the Left. Reno was correct that MM’s criticisms were over-the-top and not fitting for serious discourse, which requires respectful disagreement. Shea, on the other hand, is so full of himself that he cannot perceive that his criticisms directed toward the Holy Father’s critics are of the same vein as MMs’. There are fewer and fewer forums that cater to reasoned discourse among informed well-intentioned men and women who agree on some things, and disagree on others. First Things has been such a forum, and Reno is right to try to keep it that way. Shea, on the other hand, finds such forums disorienting.

  • Addressed to Don, not Mark Was anticipating my reference to Shea, I guess. Sorry, Don.

  • “There are fewer and fewer forums that cater to reasoned discourse among informed well-intentioned men and women who agree on some things, and disagree on others.”

    A point taken Mike, and if Reno had merely said that I doubt if I would have fisked his statement.

  • Fair enough, Don. I think that was in fact the chief point of Reno’s explanation, but like many of us who enjoy words he neglected the advantages of brevity and instead included more, and sharper, words than necessary. It is common to respond to sharp words with sharp words, and understandable, but almost always unhelpful.

    I agree that FT is not the journal it was under RJN, but it still is among the best extant journals covering the intersection of faith, politics and public policy. Its contributors include accomplished men and women of various faiths and competing views, and the inevitable disagreements typically generate far more light than heat — and that is an uncommon pleasure.

  • We’re all at odds with some aspect of the Church’s leadership.

    And here he shows his utter lack of understanding of Catholicism. Catholicism is not the leadership, and the leadership is not Catholicism.

  • c matt,
    You are of course very right re the distinction between Catholic Church and Her leadership. But I don’t think Reno was confused on that score. I think he was carefully avoiding any suggestion that MM was at odds with the Church, since there is no evidence of that at all (consistent with the distinction you note).

  • “A Pope has an extremely limited charism of infallibility. Outside of that his ideas stand or fall just like anyone elses.”

    The Pope’s authority extends far beyond the “charism of infallibility.”

    Who said anything about authority? The Pope’s charism of infalliblity does NOT extend to every aspect of his authority. He has the authority to govern, but that does not guarantee his governance will be worth a hill of beans. His governance can be properly criticized, as can other actions that fall outside of his coi.

  • c matt wrote, “Catholicism is not the leadership, and the leadership is not Catholicism.”
    It is certainly true that here is much more to Catholicism than the leadership, but the leadership is absolutely central to Catholicism.
    When still an Anglican, Mgr Ronald Knox asked himself this question: “Why did those who anathematized Nestorius come to be regarded as “Catholics” rather than those who still accept his doctrines?” He concluded that the only answer that holds water is that Catholics have the bishop of Rome in their party and the Nestorians do not.
    “If you ask “Who are the Orthodox?” you will be told “The people who hold the Orthodox Faith.” If you ask them how they know it is the Orthodox Faith they say “Because it is held by the Orthodox Church.” And the Nestorians will say exactly the same of themselves and who is to choose between them? Each say that they have the consensus fidelium behind them, and if you ask who the fideles were you are referred back to the very formula which the consensus fidelium was to prove. But if you ask a Catholic “What is the Catholic Faith? ” and are told it is that held by the Catholic Church; if you persevere, and ask what is the Catholic Church, you are no longer met with the irritatingly circular definition “the Church which holds the Catholic Faith “; you are told it is the Church which is in communion with the Bishop of Rome.”

  • c matt
    Let me give you a simple historical example of non-infallible, but binding, teaching.
    In 1653, in his bull Cum Occasione, Innocent X solemnly condemned the famous Five Propositions and all theologians agree that this was infallible.
    Since some insisted that those propositions were not to be found in the Augustinus, or were not meant by the author in the sense in which they were condemned, in 1656, in his bull Ad Sanctam Beati Petri Sedem, Alexander VII declared that they are contained in the Augustinus, and had been condemned according to the sense of the author. By no stretch of the imagination could this be considered infallible; it is not something contained in the Deposit of Faith and no one’s salvation depends of believing it
    Nevertheless, in 1664, in Regiminis Apostolici , Alexander VII required the subscription of the clergy to a formula containing the words, “with a sincere heart, I reject and condemn the five propositions taken from the book of Cornelius Jansen entitled Augustinus and in the sense understood by that same author…” and deposed and excommunicated those who refused.
    As Catholics, we may dispute the wisdom of Regiminis Apostolici, but we cannot deny the pope’s authority to impose the formula or reject the teaching of Ad Sanctam Beati Petri Sedem, unless the Holy See revisits the question.

My Irony Meter Has Exploded

Wednesday, September 30, AD 2015

After reading these two items, it might be irreparably destroyed.

Item the first:

A Montgomery County man has filed a unique class action lawsuit in the wake of the Ashley Madison hacking scandal.

Christopher Russell, who is listed in court files only as a county resident, filed a complaint in U.S. District Court in Greenbelt Sept. 11 claiming that the site fraudulently represented its female users as actual women, but in fact most were automated bots designed to entice male users to spend money.

Russell spent $100 on the site to purchase credits that allowed him to message other users who he believed were real women, according to the complaint, but they may have actually been bots or workers paid by the site. The site is set up to allow married men and women to secretly coordinate affairs.


So you might say he is filing suit because a party with which he entered into a contract did not live up to the terms of said contract. Uh huh.

Item the second has to do with First Thing’s excommunication of Maureen Mullarkey from their blog. For those who missed the sordid affair, here is RR Reno’s post on the matter. For point of reference, here is Maureen’s blog, republished at One Peter Five. You can discern for yourselves if the post in question merited banishment.

One person who is not satisfied with First Thing’s actions: Mark Shea.

Mr. Reno:  Though I applaud your decision to give Maureen Mullarkey’s pope-hating blog the well-deserved ax, I think it is important to note that the level of sheer malice and bat@#$% [edited by PZ] crazy in the comboxes announcing he ouster at First Things is, like the popularity of Donald Trump among the wreckage of what was once conservatism, an indictment of the catechesis that conservatives have been getting from their manufacturers of thought and opinion over the last decade.

First Things–like the editors of National Review and the talking hairdos at FOX who have spent all summer trying to figure out how to team the Trumpkin Frankenstein base–have nobody to blame but themselves for the creation of that demographic. That Mullarkeys and similar lunatics have been given a forum and treated as voices to be taken seriously at all in conservative media is what has helped foster the subculture that is now roaring and frothing in that combox, as well as banging at the doors ofNational Review like zombies assaulting a shopping mall.  The sheer atavistic nuttiness on display among the Francis-haters in that First Things combox and elsewhere is the fruit of an Americanized fake gospel that FT and other conservative media has worked hard to promote.

Yes, in a post in which Shea describes others as bat@#$% crazy, lunatics, and zombies, and on a blog that is not exactly known for its decorum and lack of virulence, Mark Shea thinks that FT and its ilk are only to blame for sparking the development of an atmosphere that encourages the nuttiness that he claims is on display in the comments section of its blog.

Self-awareness, thy name is not Mark Shea.

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8 Responses to My Irony Meter Has Exploded

  • Mark confuses the real world with his blog. Unlike his blog, in the real world ideas he does not like actually get to be heard and debated on their merits. As for First Things, it is not even a pale shadow of what it once was under Father Neuhaus.

  • Shea is beneath contempt. First Things is another Patheos. I will stick with TAC, One Peter Five and Rotate Caeli.

  • Meter repair shops must be run by angels; and when some children (not referencing M.M. who surely has a relationship with objectivity and civility) use their spoons to pound on their tables, they may or may not learn what a mess they wear.

  • Seems to me Mark Shea has selected the wrong target. The right target is the Catholic Church itself, which, over the last 50 years, has failed to teach and preach the Catholic faith with the result that most Catholics (cafeteria variety) have become de facto Protestants including, evidently, Mark Shea himself. Mark unknowingly, having evolved into a Protestant, finds real Catholics and their teachings abhorrent as has always been the case. Wake up Mark, you are living in the land of OZ.

  • Sorry, but I have to ask-how is it that Josh Duggar was the only guy who scored on Ashley Madison?

  • PZ: You got off easy. I suffered second and third degree burns on my right hand when my bull shit detector ring exploded.

  • Yes, in a post in which Shea describes others as bat@#$% crazy, lunatics, and zombies, and on a blog that is not exactly known for its decorum and lack of virulence, Mark Shea thinks that FT and its ilk are only to blame for sparking the development of an atmosphere that encourages the nuttiness that he claims is on display in the comments section of its blog.

    Well of course. Shea’s constructed and molded his combox to such an echo chamber he assumes everyone else has to. That some might believe in diversity of ideas (even bad ideas) and allowing speech so it can be argued is completely unbelievable to one who hasn’t heard a disagreeing though in over five years now.

  • Best to ignore the ignorant and despicable Mark Shea.

    As to First Things – Goodbye.

    RReno can’t even hold a candle to Maureen’s intellect, passion and artistry. I suspect jealousy. Maureen still has the Federalist and her own blog, so she won’t be missed. She survived LGBT’s persecution and will survive FT like the hero she is will always be.

The Lamest Defense of Planned Parenthood Ever

Wednesday, September 30, AD 2015

Have you ever gotten to the last line of an editorial where the author’s biographical information is posted and just shuddered? That happened to me today as I read this lame attack on Congress by David S. Cohen, who is somehow a law professor at Drexel in Philadelphia. Cohen argues that the House bill which would strip Planned Parenthood of funding violates the constitutional prohibition against bills of attainder. No, really, check this out:

The first day of teaching constitutional law, I inevitably find myself asking the question: “Does anyone know what a bill of attainder is?”

When one reads the rest of the article, one wonders if Professor Cohen know what a bill of attainder is.

A bill of attainder is a law that inflicts punishment upon a particular individual without a judicial trial. In other words, a bill of attainder is, as the Supreme Court has termed it, a “trial by legislature” rather than by court.

Ladies and gentlemen, you have just read the one factually correct line in the entire article.

Though no one is talking about it, this most recent dust-up over federal funding for Planned Parenthood is very clearly an example of an unconstitutional bill of attainder: Congress is singling out Planned Parenthood and punishing the organization for allegedly improper and illegal actions.

So just having factually and accurately defined a bill of attainder, Professor (shudder) Cohen now stretches the meaning beyond all recognition to imply that the attempt to not fund a private organization is the same thing as Congress punishing a person for treason without trial.

I have a high opinion of the readers of this particular blog. Based on the comments most of you have displayed a good grasp of logic and basic reading comprehension. Sadly, Professor (weeps) Cohen does not have such a high grasp of logic and reasoning. It takes quite a feat of mental gymnastics to categorize a Congressional attempt to not fund an organization as a bill of attainder. Planned Parenthood is not being “punished.” Cecile Richards (unfortunately) is not about to face either jail time or the gallows. The organization that she runs, which still manages to rake in millions of dollars from clients and from donors, might – like thousands of other similar organizations – have to live without receiving grants from the federal government. Somehow I don’t think that when James Madison, Alexander Hamilton, Rufus King, and the other men who gathered together in Philadelphia during the summer of 1787 crafted the language in the Constitution about bills of attainder that this is what they had on their minds.

More fundamentally, Congress can make spending decisions based on whatever criteria it deems appropriate. Planned Parenthood is not entitled to federal money, and thus is not being deprived of essential liberty in the way that a person found guilty without trial would be. Therefore the linkage here is incredibly dubious, at best.

Professor (sobs uncontrollably) Cohen continues:

First, removing Planned Parenthood’s federal funding, over half a billion dollars that help it provide cancer screenings, gynecological care, contraceptive counseling, and more, is a clear instance of punishment. (emphasis mine)

Hmmmm, something seems to be missing from this list. Whatever could that “more” be?

Professor (what is wrong with this country) Cohen really gives the way over the course of his next two sentences:

The Republican-controlled House voted to remove the funding based on deceptive videos from the Center for Medical Progress that purport to show that Planned Parenthood sells aborted fetal body parts and alters abortion procedures to facilitate those sales.

Putting aside the fact that the videos show nothing of the sort,

So Cohen is going to go with the LIE that the videos are in any way deceptive, and then he is going to wishcast away all the parts of the video do indeed show that Planned Parenthood is engaging in all of the practices it has been accused of. I don’t think we really need to read any more of Professor (don’t send your kids to law school) Cohen constitutional “analysis.” He has just outed himself as a silly partisan hack who will bend constitutional law to mean what he wants it to mean.

Sleep well Americans – this is the man who gets to teach our next generation of lawyers about constitutional law. Clearly they are in excellent hands.

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7 Responses to The Lamest Defense of Planned Parenthood Ever

  • “So just having factually and accurately defined a bill of attainder, Professor (shudder) Cohen now stretches the meaning beyond all recognition.”
    As C.S. Lewis reminded us, Satan uses a pint of poison in a clear lake to accomplish his deceit.

  • What a stretch of the imagination and outright absurdities.

    It fits however. The desperate know no bounds to twist truth’s and wordsmith their lies as long as they reach their goal.

    This one phrase; …”a clear instance of punishment,” in context to the nation’s leading provider of killing humans, is incredible.
    The punishment for being inconvenient is death.

    Watch out. This is the future golden-boy of the compassionate liberal inteligencia.

  • “I can find no warrant for such an appropriation in the Constitution,….” (and I think we all know the rest of Pres. Cleveland’s veto)
    Start there, “Professor” Cohen; and after you get that figured out, we’ll talk.

  • I would love to have this bozo opposing me in court if this is a fair sample of his legal scholarship.

  • As a liberal (and pro choice) friend of mine said on Facebook, the implicit assumption of this article is that once a group receives federal monies, it is entitled to those funds forever. Even he views that as preposterous.

  • Inside the Supreme Court Building, the Living Constitution sits, like Crom in his moutain, and laughs. I can think of four Justices who might just buy this lame argument if they were entertained enough.
    Maybe five, depending on which Anthony Kennedy shows up on any given day.

  • Perhaps Mr. Cohen studied under that Constitutional Law professor from Chicago currently residing in the White House.

Pope Francis Meets With Kim Davis

Wednesday, September 30, AD 2015

Pope Francis and Kim Davis

Just when I think I have Pope Francis figured out, I am back at square one.  Inside Vatican is reporting that Pope Francis met secretly with Kim Davis:

On Thursday, September 24, in the afternoon after his historic address to Congress, just a few minutes before flying to New York City, Pope Francis received, spoke with, and embraced Kim Davis — the Kentucky County Clerk who was jailed in early September for refusing to sign the marriage licenses of homosexual couples who wished to have their civil marriages certified by the state of Kentucky.

Also present was Kim’s husband, Joe Davis.

Kim and her husband had come to Washington for another purpose — Kim was to receive a “Cost of Discipleship” award on Friday, September 25, from The Family Research Council at the Omni Shoreham Hotel.

Pope Francis entered the room.

Kim greeted him, and the two embraced.

There is no recording of this conversation, or photographs, as far as I know. But “there is not any thing secret that shall not be made manifest, nor hidden, that shall not be known and come to light.” (Luke 8:17)

Kim Davis gave me this account of the meeting shortly after it took place.

“The Pope spoke in English,” she told me. “There was no interpreter. ‘Thank you for your courage,’ Pope Francis said to me. I said, ‘Thank you, Holy Father.’ I had asked a monsignor earlier what was the proper way to greet the Pope, and whether it would be appropriate for me to embrace him, and I had been told it would be okay to hug him. So I hugged him, and he hugged me back. It was an extraordinary moment. ‘Stay strong,’ he said to me. Then he gave me a rosary as a gift, and he gave one also to my husband, Joe. I broke into tears. I was deeply moved.

“Then he said to me, ‘Please pray for me.’ And I said to him, ‘Please pray for me also, Holy Father.’ And he assured me that he would pray for me.”

Joe told Kim that he would give his rosary to her mother, who is a Catholic. And Kim then said that she would give her rosary to her father, who is also a Catholic.

Vatican sources have confirmed to me that this meeting did occur; the occurrence of this meeting is not in doubt.

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54 Responses to Pope Francis Meets With Kim Davis

  • Good for Francis. I had a wish that he would join a march in front of a Planned parenthood aboritorium.
    Imagine the response from both sides as they pass each other shifting their evolving likes and dislikes.

  • I read about this yesterday. I hope it is true. If true, then it should be publicized far and wide..

  • Pope Francis seemingly defends marriage between a man and a woman. Very sad that this should shock us.

  • . On a similar note, he blasted the pro gay/ pro euthanasia Mayor of Rome as a pretend Catholic. Could he have been touched by the US meeting with Davis into “judging” the Mayor at some level…


  • BTW, folks, the news articles published on Yahoo and elsewhere are getting the expected cursing from all the pelvic crazed baboons.

  • I hope this meeting with Kim Davis represents a shift in Vatican attitudes and policies toward the sodomites

  • On the papal flight back to Rome after the World Meeting of Families, Pope Francis was asked about Kim Davis and he didn’t know who she was.

    I’m digging around to try to confirm this story, if it’s true or not.

  • Tito,
    Some degree of non familiarity is shown in the gifts of rosaries to two Protestants who then gave them to Catholic parents. I suspect he was hurriedly briefed on the story and presumed they were Catholic.

  • The yahoo news article about the mayor of Rome described him as unpopular in the Italian press. If you’re wondering why the pope is publicly criticizing him, but not Pres Obama etc, their comparative popularity might be relevant info.

  • Bill Bannon,

    I agree.

    I’ve dug around and about 40 minutes ago, the mainstream media (secular and liberal press) just exploded on the news.

    The Vatican, Fr. Federioc Lombardi, has confirmed the meeting took place but won’t divulge any details.

    The lawyer for Kim Davis, Staver, also confirmed the story.

    Kim Davis as well has confirmed the story.

    The story looks genuine and true.

  • NBC on the 28th prior to knowing about Davis has the Pope saying to reporters on his return plane that conscientious objection in such situations is a human right..


    Good response by Francis on the matter of those intimately radicalized against God for the sex abuse by priests…” I understand that woman”.

  • “…pelvic crazed baboons”
    Paul W. P. you are a genius of the keyboard.

  • Pingback: Pope Francis Met With Kim Davis - Big Pulpit
  • From Yahoo, I’m not surprised. The NHL blog I used to read there, Puck Daddy, was run by a big time gay marriage supporter. I presume he is not alone at Yahoo with that view.

  • If they were intellectually consistent, the papal positivists would treat this the same way they did, say, his phone call to Jaquelina Lisbona–i.e., it’s just her version of the story, she has an interest in it being spun this way, she misunderstood, etc.

    Now, I’m inclined to think this turned out the way the Davises said it did–but I also believe Mrs. Lisbona, too. Getting in contact with the Pope would be pretty well unforgettable.

  • How did ETWN coverage miss this?

  • Explains the sudden spinning of the Pope telling Islamic folks who don’t like being associated with terrorism that they should, y’know, CONDEMN IT as “pope calls Koran a book of peace.” (He did one of those “hey, if you are saying X, then you should do Y” rhetorical devices.)

  • This just confirms my belief that the Pope had his hands tied, to a certain degree, on the stage of Catholic political issues, coming to America. He can criticise an Italian mayor because frankly, he isn’t really anybody. Criticise an American congressman, and you’ll feel it. As someone previously said, congressman act like little gods.

    he isn’t rocking any boats publicly, because they’ll pressure him out like they did with Benedict. I’m no conspiracy theorist, but it all makes sense. He is treading his power very carefully, whilst staying true to the Gospel.

    And it also confirms my initial belief that his speech to congress was intentionally diplomatic, otherwise he would not have been invited.

    I Wouldn’t be harsh on him on this matter. We don’t see what really goes on behind those Vatican walls, nor the conversations or the decisions that are made.

    This is not excusing his lack of a “heavy hand”. This is understanding the logic behind his politics.

    PF is a good man doing a very tough job. I Pray for the Pope.

  • Bergolio’s “leaked” (Really? You believe that?) “secret” encounter with a Christian who refused to issue sodomite “marriage” licenses, in my opinion, was a media stunt, well organized by his buddies in the Vatican.

    Seriously now, are we THAT naive?

    “WOW, you see, Bergoglio is against sodomite marriage”… REALLY?

    The guy should be ashamed of himself pretending to be the Vicar of Christ and doesn’t have the COURAGE of a Protestant to declare and proclaim his faith and say to a nation that “what you did was wrong and either you correct yourself or you will go to Hell.” How many public speeches and homilies he gave in America? How many times he explicitly condemned the sodomite marriage law when he had the chance? Not one single time. Most, if not all of his gibberish was about his freaking mother earth and government’s redistribution of wealth.

    Do we have a Catholic Pope?

  • Will you please decide if the Vatican is great at setting things up, or horrible? And if they want to slap orthodox Catholics in the face, or make us like them?

    Also, how on earth a “well organized media stunt” manages to go past the Catholic media that would welcome it, mostly bypass the official media, and only sneak around the back with the far side of crazy that hate the Pope because he worships anything but their goals?

    I found out about it this morning from someone that assumed it was another “all dogs go to heaven” type rumor that went viral.
    I think the Pope has rather poor personal judgement on a lot of issues, and without a doubt holds some very questionable notions. That’s different from not being Catholic.
    You don’t think he’s strident enough, great. You don’t agree with his tactics. I don’t, either, but your choice of tactics is rather questionable when it drives someone who agrees that the Pope should be acting differently out of wanting any kind of association.
    He may be a milksop, but at least he doesn’t violently drive off everyone who isn’t perfectly in step.

  • Question: Is Bergoglio embarrassed to be Catholic?

    There is no doubt at all, if you watched his actions and words since he was put on Peter’s Chair, that when addressing non-Catholics, when addressing issues that are contrary to Catholicism when meeting the non-Catholics, he NEVER says anything defending the teachings of the Catholic Church and never says any objectionable word to these people.

    He wants to be nice to sinners. He wants to be popular and the media darling. He is from this world.

    Instead of correcting sinners, he welcomes them and even declares a year of “mercy”.. i.e. everything is allowed for a year because that’s what it’s really about… the “year of mercy” … starting with allowing and facilitating for Catholics to divorce.

    And don’t assume that after the year, everything will go back “Catholic”.. No Sir Ree Bob!!!

    Once he opened the door for “everything is allowed”, and the Synod will confirm it, it will be the new “normal” just like sodomite “marriage” is the new “normal.”

    Do we have a Catholic Pope?

  • “He may be a milksop, but at least he doesn’t violently drive off everyone who isn’t perfectly in step”

    Agree Foxfier.

    I wander sometimes, in the way some Carholics carry-on, what differentiates them from a fanatic Muslim Ayatollah. ?

  • While the pope’s meeting with Davis is, in itself, praiseworthy, I find it strange in the context of the entirety of Francis’ visit to the U.S. When the pope is speaking about the hoax of man made global warming errr Climate Change and the naked anti-death penalty activism, he is not only bold but in your face about it. But on stuff like this that actually has bearing on Catholic Christian morality, he is oh so secretive. Something doesn’t smell right here.

  • >>>Throughout his papacy, Francis has insisted that marriage is between a man and woman, but he didn’t emphasize this church teaching during his trip because he wanted to offer a “positive” message about families to America, Lombardi (Bergoglio’s “press secretary”) told reporters<<<

    I wonder what would Jesus say or do….

    Correcting sinners, leading them to Heaven or telling them everything you're doing is honky-dory, it's "mercy time"??? "I'm not going to offend you, I'm going to be nice to you because that's how you're going to believe in me…..I'll let you live and die sinners."


  • Ezabelle –
    Greg- if we assume he really is trying to draw people into the faith, and that in the US the global warming and anti-death-penalty folks are most likely to be, ah, not in agreement with the important bits… he may be trying to get common ground, get them to like him, so they’ll listen to him enough to save their souls. That whole “find common ground” tactic.
    He didn’t make a secret of the visit to the Little Sisters, but it didn’t much hit the news outside of Catholic circles– and they’re nuns, people would EXPECT him to visit them!
    I heard folks talking about his speech to Congress and expected a lot of open borders junk…I go read it, and find that he did a good job of drawing a distinction between what HE supports, and what principles we need to apply.
    ( I sure as heck don’t think it’s very loving to be the pressure relief valve for Mexico, so that the folks who are most desperate can take the “steal a loaf of bread when starving” route with immigration laws rather than improving the country.)
    Of course, that goes back around to the question of his practical judgement… did he KNOW that his speech would be mined and treated as ammunition for exactly the opposite, to drive people away from the Church? If not, who the heck isn’t doing their job about briefing him? I know that they mentioned he doesn’t let anybody know everything he’s planning to do, but that doesn’t mean that he shouldn’t get a blessed briefing about “ways the English language media is going to screw this up.”

  • What would Satan do?

    Satan would be nice to people, all people because he wants to have followers. So, he will not offend anybody. He will welcome everybody. He will be merciful to everybody. He will not correct anybody who offends God.
    Instead, he will tell everybody that there are no sinners as fas he is concerned.
    He will give people the impression that God is judgmental, not nice, bigot, discriminatory, and evil. But that he isn’t any of these.
    He is merciful, loving, caring, welcoming, accepting, forgiving.
    He will let you do anything you want and he will never judge you but instead he will encourage you and help you do what you like to do.
    Satan would be the good guy and God the bad guy.
    Satan will appoint a representative on earth. And who can represent him better than the pope himself, the Vicar of Christ, Satan’s sole enemy?

    Bergoglio is leading souls to Hell.

  • “Bergoglio is leading people straight to hell”. Ok. We’ll tally them up at the end of his papacy. If you believe some, the body count is going to be huge!

    It seems he won’t please anyone until he starts condemning the infidels to hell. Sounds like another religion to me.

    His name is Pope Francis, not Bergoglio.

  • Some, err, many so-called “Catholics” venerate to the point of almost worshiping humans instead of their creator. And I don’t care if this human is the pope or not. He was created just like the rest of us and unfortunately, Jesus is ignored even by the pope. If Jesus, with a BIG Halo, was walking in St. Peter’s Square while ANY pope is doing his round, people will still be cheering for the pope and ignore Jesus. I bet my life on it.

  • I rarely comment despite the growing hatred and vitriol so common on almost every online news outlet. I did not expect to find the same entrenched intolerance in reading a Catholic publication. Obviously I disagree with most of you. Kim Davis is breaking the law. If her principles and conscientious objection are more important than her $80,000+ a year salary, then she should quit. It is not her right or job to adjudicate who may love and who may marry.

    Like millions of others who claim rich faith in God, Davis is usurping His right to make judgement. Reading many of these comments, it seems you think God applauds intolerance, hatred, and judgement. That concept goes against everything I was taught as a Catholic, including that He loves all of his children. I simply cannot fathom why so many of those who profess abiding conviction in God’s plan and wisdom, do not trust his Judgement. It is, or should be, at the core of our faith.

  • Err…whatever JPIV…and in more important news, I received this letter from RTL this afternoon…

    Good morning all,
    I am speaking at RTLA Conference tomorrow.
    However at the last minute yesterday Peter Dutton cancelled the visa of the keynote speaker Troy Newman due to pressure from the far left pro- abortion lobby lead by opposition leader Penny Wong.
    Troy Newman is the President of Operation Rescue who have exposed Planned Parenthood’s sale of aborted foetal tissue.
    Troy Newman landed at Melbourne Airport at 7am this morning and is currently being questioned in immigration. RTLA have sent a lawyer and many people are lobbying Peter Dutton to reverse his decision.
    Please pray that righteousness, truth and wisdom will prevail and no weapon formed against Troy and his wife Mellissa (and their family in the US) will prevail.
    Thank you so much.
    Kind regards,

    * Penny Wong is a left-leaning federal politician in opposition. She is also alesbian with two children conceived via IVF through a donor.


  • Sorry to bombard Donald- but this is also happening currently in Australia – if anyone is interested.

    Perhaps the effort in micro-analysing PF could be put in fighting and defending our own Catholic communities.

    “As you may have heard, Archbishop Julian Porteous is being taken to the Anti-discrimination board in Tassie, (Tasmania, Australia), by the greens representative, for distributing the “Don’t Mess with Marriage” pastoral letter to parents at Catholic schools and also to Catholic parishes. Aside from the great power of prayer, this petition is another active way to support the Archbishop and to join your voice in support of marriage:


  • “to adjudicate who may love and who may marry.”

    Nan, do you realize just how ridiculous you sound? Throughout all of recorded history marriage has been between men and women, and that remains the teaching of the Catholic Church. You act shocked and outraged because many of us do not agree that same sex marriage is marriage. This is an innovation of the past quarter century, still opposed by most of the globe, and imposed upon most of the nation this year solely by judicial fiat, and you act as if gay marriage was handed down by God to Moses on Mount Sinai. How utterly bizarre.

  • “Is Bergoglio embarrassed to be Catholic?” Well yes, of course, when it comes to certain issues that all his well educated friends in high places are against. God bless him for the meeting, but the lack of openness about it sends the message loud and clear. I was instantly reminded of the scene from Blazing Saddles when out of gratitude an old woman brings the black sheriff a fresh baked pie and asks him if he has the decency not to mention it to anyone. After all, appearances you know.

  • Comment of the week F7. Take ‘er away Sam!

  • Congratulations to Pope Francis for his mysteriously stealth support of Kim Davis and against SSM. Let us hope he comes out again , openly and frequently, in support of Catholic doctrine. When he does this he is most impressive and worthy of attention.

  • “This is an innovation of the past quarter century, still opposed by most of the globe, and imposed upon most of the nation this year solely by judicial fiat, and you act as if gay marriage was handed down by God to Moses on Mount Sinai. How utterly bizarre”.


  • Nan –
    your trigger-word program needs work. When claiming to respond to comments, it helps if the topic you’re commenting on was actually MENTIONED in the comments; two dozen comments into a thread, they’re all about figuring out the Pope, and your “oh I OF COURSE am always here” comment is about…. a totally unrelated subject.
    Not just name-calling and lying, but doing a bad job of it. Dang.

  • “Big underground success”!
    Just maybe the last Our Father of the rosary said by the faithful for the intention of the pope and other prayers for him are being heard.

  • Foxfier:

    The anti-death penalty movement effectively exploiting the Church hierarchy and using it as a wedge between pro-lifers to advance their anti-life agenda (yes the anti-death penalty movement is anti-life at its core) has long proved the whole “find common ground tactic” a failure. It seems to me even St John Paul II started to realize that taking sides on capital punishment was a mistake. When Cardinal Ratzinger sent that letter to Cardinal McCarrick stating that Catholics enjoy a “legitimate diversity of opinion” with regard to capital punishment, he acting not merely on his own personal behalf, but in his official capacity as head of the CDF. To my knowledge, he said nothing publicly about the death penalty as Pope Benedict XVI. I searched in vain to find any statements to that effect. And now Pope Francis not only digs up the whole anti-death penalty nonsense, he ups the ante with his opposition to life sentences.

  • Greg-
    I don’t disagree on how effective it is, at least in the US, but it is still something a person can reasonably disagree on…especially when they are charismatic.
    Given that the Pope obviously doesn’t trust organizations to have power– even while he thinks they MUST have that power– supporting life in prison over death penalty makes sense. (Do YOU trust Iran’s use of the death penalty?!) Same way his view of capitalism makes sense if he thinks crony capitalism is normal.

  • Foxfier:

    First of all, Pope Francis opposes life sentences. He calls it a “hidden” death penalty. Do I trust Iran’s use of the death penalty? I don’t trust Iran. It has nothing to do with the death penalty per se. Our very judicious use of capital punishment is in no way comparable to the way it is used in totalitarian hell holes like Iran, China, North Korea etc. The pope surely knows that. If he doesn’t, his ignorance is scandalous. We don’t execute people for expressing political disagreement or engaging in homosexual acts, or the like. I think the fact of the matter is this pope is more concerned with advancing an ideological agenda than he is the mission of the Church.

  • It doesn’t matter if he knows it’s different in degree, if he’s bought into things like the Innocence Project’s stories that it’s not different in kind.

    Same reason it’s not good for the Church to jump into scientific situations, it confuses folks about her authority; a simple and LOUD lay-out of the principles involved– without their preferred course of action even mentioned— would be nice, but… yeah, I’ll take a pony, too…..

  • I think the very low key, later leaked meetings with the Little Sisters of the Poor and Davis (well, in Davis’s case, as I understand it, the Vatican didn’t even leak it; an American made the claim and the Vatican didn’t deny it, was how the story first broke) show a distinct difference.

    America has probably more people who would be attracted to a guy who talks about conscience rights and freedom of religion than people who are attracted to a guy who talks about the evilsi of air conditioning.

    The only way making one message loud and clear, and the other muted and unadvertised, is so that he can emphasize one, and leave a bread crumb for orthodox Catholics who want to think that the pope identifies with them too.

    But the idea that this is a good evangelical strategy is not convincing. 1 because the Good News himself probably priorities life issues and the freedom to worship him above air conditioning, and 2 because, this guy has never made Jesus the focal point of his public life. Yeah, he talks about him, but proclamation of Jn3:16 sounding concepts is not a priority with this guy when we are honest with ourselves.

    Priorities. What are yours?

  • Autocorrect apparently wet crazy on the above, apple culpa.

  • I don’t care if he “identifies with” Snips on My Little Pony– and, frankly, that’s the kind of thing that does actually matter, immensely, to the sort of folks that he’d be trying to reach if my theory is correct.

  • “…if he bought I to the Innocence Project”

    Maybe the Church hierarchy will buy into common sense. I’m not holding out too much hope of that happening anytime soon.

  • Re local DC FOX news this a.m. – Kim Davis’ lawyers say she and her husband met with PF for 15 min in private. The Vatican says PF met with a group of people inclluding Davis at the Vatican embassy before leaving for NYC. That he did meet in private with someone, but it was not Kim.

    Well someone is lying. What a mess.

  • To CAM. I guess it was too good to last. Since they are getting flak from their gay constituents the Vatican is walking back, the now infamous (apparently to them), Kim Davis episode. What a bunch of mealy mouthed creeps. Disgusting. Let us hope the news report on this was incorrect.

  • I am disgusted again: http://www.zenit.org/en/articles/vatican-publishes-clarification-on-pope-s-meeting-with-kim-davis
    Maybe we should start paying attention to our local parish briest and our local diocesan bishop. And if we don’t have a good parish priest, then maybe we should change parishes until we find one. Maybe in the end it is best if we pay no heed to what comes out of the Vatican – it is just too darn depressing.

  • What in the world? The Vatican’s comment on the meeting with Davis…( Pope Francis: ” Stay strong”) now says the meeting should “not be considered as support for her position.” Apparently the Vatican sees Francis’ words …stay strong…as possibly an exhortation to do push ups and sit ups every day. The translation of English into further English continues.
    Seriously this could have one legitimate nuance if a moral theologian from a Rome university called the Vatican and said that in his opinion the cooperation of a County Clerk was remote material cooperation with a homosexual marriage …somewhat like a Catholic fuel truck driver delivering heating oil to an abortion clinic….bad looking but permissable. If that type of cooperation in sin technicality motivated the Vatican, they should have revealed that and given a lesson in moral theology according to the opinion they are favoring while other moral theologians might take a stricter view and see it as sinful cooperation. But by the Vatican not explaining their comment, it sends a signal to active gays like those at NCR combox that change…repealing Romans chapter one….is possible.
    Was this motivated by a moral theologian phone call or was this motivated by a gay sympathetic Vatican worker.

  • “Was this motivated by a moral theologian phone call or was this motivated by a gay sympathetic Vatican worker?”
    I dunno probably the latter: lavender mafia. I have no familiarity with moral theologians. I imagine it’s very hard work making up stuff both about God and about morality. My reaction to the news that Pope Who had met with the brave woman was, “A stopped clock is correct twice each 24 hours.” And now they screwed up that.

  • Greg Mockeridge,.
    You like Pope Benedict probably for other reasons but he publicly as Pope called for the elimination of the death penalty unfortunately. What is bizarre is that all three of these last three Popes did not look at figures for those regions of the world which have millions of poor people which is where deterrence becomes obvious….China murder rate 1 per 100,000/ non death penalty Brazil and Mexico 24/20 respectively….per 100,000. Links to Benedict calling for its end follow:



  • Paul W Primavera-
    hold the disgust, and remember that’s from the guy who is careful with his words.
    Looking at what they’re careful to label the full statement, here:
    it jumps that he’s dancing around something by being very, very specific… I would guess that the Pope didn’t give anybody a heads up about this.

PopeWatch: His Decision

Wednesday, September 30, AD 2015



Sandro Magister at his blog Chiesa tells us that the Synod will all come down to what Pope Francis decides:




ROME, September 28, 2015 – Back in Rome after his journey to Cuba and the United States, culminating with the world meeting of families in Philadelphia, Pope Francis is now facing the much more exacting challenge of the synod that will open on October 4, the Sunday of the liturgical year on which – as if by a jest of providence – Catholic churches all around the world will resound with these words of Jesus: “Therefore what God has joined together, no human being must separate.”

The synod will last for three weeks, and the procedures that will be adopted have not yet been made known, despite having a big influence on the outcome of the work.

What is certain is that there will not be a final message, no commission having been set up to write one.

Another definite feature, preannounced by Pope Francis, is that “each week there will be a discussion of one chapter” of the three into which the preparatory document is subdivided:

> Instrumentum laboris

So this time there will be no “Relatio post disceptationem” halfway through the work, after a first phase of free discussion on everything, as at the synod of October 2014. The discussion will be broken up right away into narrow linguistic groups, each of which will sum up its perspectives in reports destined to remain confidential. At the end of the three weeks there will be a vote on a final “Relatio,” and the pope will give the concluding talk.

Also unlike in the past it is not expected that after a few months there will be a postsynodal apostolic exhortation to cap everything off. The discussion will remain open to future developments. The only embodiment of the provisory conclusions will be the pope’s talk at the end of the work, which will as a matter of course overtop and obscure all the other voices.

In spite of the much-heralded emphasis on collegiality, in fact, the next round of the synod will also see at work in Francis a monocratic exercise of papal authority, as in last year’s session, at the end of which the pope kept alive propositions that had not obtained the votes necessary for approval. And they were precisely the ones on the most controversial points, divorce and homosexuality.


One undisputed sign of this monocratic exercise of papal authority was the publication, last September 8, of the two motu proprio with which Francis reformed annulment procedures:

> Forbidden To Call It Divorce. But It Sure Looks Like It

A reform of marital cases had been expected for some time. But Francis set it in motion while keeping out the family-centered synod, which he knew was not inclined to approve what he had in mind. He set up the preparatory commission in August of 2014, before the convocation of the first session of the synod. And he signed the motu proprio last August 15, before the second session, scheduling its implementation for next December 8.

The most substantial innovation of the new procedures is that in order to obtain a declaration of nullity, the mere word of the applicant will have the “force of full proof,” without the need for other evidence, and the presumed “lack of faith” will act as a universal master key not just for thousands but for millions of marriages to be declared null, with an ultra-fast procedure and with the local bishop as the sole judge.

On this the synod fathers therefore find themselves facing a fait accompli. But it is hard to imagine that they are not discussing it. Church historian Roberto de Mattei has even hypothesized that some synod fathers may ask for the abrogation of this act of governance on the part of Pope Francis, “up to now his most revolutionary.” And he has cited the historical precedent of the retraction made in 1813 by Pius VII – imprisoned by Napoleon Bonaparte – of his act of subjection of the Holy See to the sovereignty of the emperor: a retraction invoked publicly by Cardinal Bartolomeo Pacca, pro-secretary of state, and by other “zealous” cardinals, as well as by the great spiritual master Pio Brunone Lanteri, a future venerable:

> Si possono discutere gli atti di governo del papa?


Meanwhile, an appeal has been issued in the American magazine “First Things” by a hefty number of theologians, philosophers, and scholars from various countries, asking the synod fathers to reject paragraph 137 of the preparatory document, judged as contrary to the magisterium of the Church and a portent of confusion among the faithful:

> An Appeal Recalling the Teaching of “Humanae Vitae”

The appeal concerns the teaching of Paul VI’s encyclical “Humanae Vitae” on birth control – an encyclical that Pope Francis himself has called “prophetic” – and numbers among its authors and signatories a good number of professors from the Pontifical John Paul II Institute for Studies on Marriage and Family: Stephan Kampowski, Livio Melina, Jaroslav Merecki, José Noriega, Juan José Pérez-Soba, Mary Shivanandan, Luigi Zucaro, as well as luminaries like the German philosopher Robert Spaemann and the Swiss ethicist Martin Rhonheimer.

In the judgment of the signatories of the appeal, paragraph 137 of the preparatory document assigns absolute primacy to the individual conscience in the selection of the means of birth control, even against the teaching of the Church’s magisterium, with the added risk that such primacy could also be extended to other areas, like abortion and euthanasia.

In effect, it is precisely on the primacy of the individual conscience “beyond what the rule might say objectively” that the supporters of communion for the divorced and remarried rely, as one of these, cardinal of Vienna Christoph Schönborn explained in an interview with “La Civiltà Cattolica” of September 26:

“There are situations in which the priest, the guide, who knows the persons, can come to the point of saying: ‘Your situation is such that, in conscience, in your and in my conscience as a pastor, I see your place in the sacramental life of the Church.’”

The split between the individual conscience and the magisterium of the Church is analogous to that which separates pastoral practice from doctrine: a danger that in the judgment of many looms over the synod and has been the object of very strong words from Cardinal Gerhard Müller, prefect of the congregation for the doctrine of the faith, in a lecture given on September 1 in Regensburg on the occasion of the release of the German edition of Cardinal Robert Sarah’s book “God or Nothing”:

> Liturgy, Grace, Marriage, and the New Danger of Schism

According to Müller, “the separation of teaching and practice of the faith” was precisely that which in the 16th century led to the schism in the Western Church. With the deceptive practice of indulgences, the Church of Rome was in fact ignoring doctrine and “the original protest of Luther himself against the negligence of the shepherds of the Church was justified, because one may not play with the salvation of souls, even if the purpose of the deception would be to bring about a good deed.”

And today – the cardinal continued – the question is the same: “We may not deceive the people, when it comes to the sacramentality of marriage, its indissolubility, its openness toward the child, and the fundamental complementarity of the two sexes. Pastoral care must keep in view the eternal salvation, and it should not try to be superficially pleasing according to the wishes of the people.”


As can be seen, the proponents of “openness” are very active, but the stances of those who oppose it are also numerous and strong.

On September 29 there will be a repeat presentation in Rome, backed up with 800,000 signatures including those of 202 cardinals and bishops, of the “Filial Appeal” to Pope Francis that he pronounce “a word of clarification” against the “widespread confusion arising from the possibility that a breach has been opened within the Church that would accept adultery—by permitting divorced and then civilly remarried Catholics to receive Holy Communion—and would virtually accept even homosexual unions.”

This appeal to the pope is not far from what was said by Cardinal Angelo Scola, archbishop of Milan and a father at the next synod, in an interview with “Corriere della Sera” of Sunday, September 27:

“The urgent priority, for me, is that the synod would suggest to the Holy Father a magisterial statement that would unify by simplifying the doctrine on marriage. A statement aimed at demonstrating the relationship between the experience of faith and the sacramental nature of marriage.”

The complete text of the interview:

> Scola: “I miei timori sulla famiglia. Ci si sta pensando poco”

On September 30, at the Angelicum University, cardinals Carlo Caffarra and Raymond Leo Burke, two of the five cardinals who on the verge of the synod of 2014 took a stance against their colleague Walter Kasper with the book “Remaining in the Truth of Christ,” will reassert their ideas together with Archbishop Cyril Vasil, secretary of the congregation for the Oriental Churches and also a coauthor of the book.

And two more books with the same perspective are about to come out, written by not just five cardinals but seventeen, from Africa, Asia, Europe, and the Americas, six of whom will take part in the synod either by reason of office, like the Guinean Robert Sarah, or because they were appointed by the pope himself, like the Italian Caffarra:

> First Five, Now Seventeen Anti-Kasper Cardinals

The synod is around the corner and the battle is in full swing. And Pope Francis will have the last word.

Continue reading...

Buckley and Big Sister

Wednesday, September 30, AD 2015

William F. Buckley on Ayn Rand.  During his lifetime Buckley functioned as a gatekeeper for the conservative movement.  Get on the wrong side of Buckley and a group on the right could quickly find itself relegated to the fringes of American life.  So it was with Ayn Rand and her Objectivists, a movement whose main tenet seems to have been to say “Yes Ma’am!” to anything that came from her mouth or pen.  Rand made her reputation and fortune by writing two novels:  The Fountainhead (1943) and Atlas Shrugged (1957).  The poorly written novels, with stick figure characters, were immense financial successes, combining Rand’s anti-collectivist libertarianism with heaping helpings of, for the time, explicit sex, her heroines, always Rand think-a-likes, having multiple lovers.  Between the sex Rand specialized in long, bloviating, didactic speeches:

“Did you want to see it used by whining rotters who never rouse themselves to any effort, who do not possess the ability of a filing clerk, but demand the income of a company president, who drift from failure to failure and expect you to pay their bills, who hold their wishing as an equivalent of your work and their need as a higher claim to reward than your effort, who demand that you serve them, who demand that it be the aim of your life to serve them, who demand that your strength be the voiceless, rightless, unpaid, unrewarded slave of their impotence, who proclaim that you are born to serfdom by reason of your genius, while they are born to rule by the grace of incompetence, that yours is only to give, but theirs only to take, that yours is to produce, but theirs to consume, that you are not to be paid, neither in matter nor in spirit, neither by wealth nor by recognition nor by respect nor by gratitude—so that they would ride on your rail and sneer at you and curse you, since they owe you nothing, not even the effort of taking off their hats which you paid for? Would this be what you wanted? Would you feel proud of it?”

Atlas Shrugged, page 453

Buckley assigned Whittaker Chambers to review Atlas Shrugged.  His review, entitled Big Sister is Watching You, appeared in the December 28, 1957 issue of National Review.

Several years ago, Miss Ayn Rand wrote The Fountainhead. Despite a generally poor press, it is said to have sold some four hundred thousand copies. Thus, it became a wonder of the book trade of a kind that publishers dream about after taxes. So Atlas Shrugged had a first printing of one hundred thousand copies. It appears to be slowly climbing the best-seller lists.

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2 Responses to Buckley and Big Sister

Worse Than Murder Inc. and Choice

Tuesday, September 29, AD 2015


Sarah Owens at The Federalist details her experience at Planned Parenthood Worse Than Murder Inc. five years ago:


Two years into college, I found myself late—yes, that kind of late. Now, I knew it was probably nothing, but I wasn’t sure, and I wanted to be. Like a lot of college students, I drank on weekends and if I were pregnant I didn’t want to harm the child. Again, due to embarrassment, I didn’t go to the doctor I knew. I was afraid, even at 20 years old, that a pregnancy test would somehow show up on a bill that went to my parents. If I wasn’t pregnant I didn’t want the test to ever come to light. So, again I trekked to Planned Parenthood, this one located right off campus.

I left the office and cried. Maybe it was relief, but I mostly felt hurt and manipulated. What if I had been pregnant—would she have been able to sway me? How many others have passed through those doors and were swayed to terminate, who felt the strain—financial, physical, or mental—that parenting might cause so decided it would be easier to just “fix the problem”?

Go here to read the rest.  Sarah’s story helps underline the lie behind the pro-abort claim to be “pro-choice”.  First, you cannot be “pro-choice” without being a pro-abort.  (I would never own a slave, but I would never impose my morality on slave-holders.  I would never gas a Jew but who am I to judge the Nazis?  I would never kill my toddler, but that child murderer probably had her reasons.)  A choice between two alternatives is only morally acceptable if both of the choices are at least morally neutral.  Slaying an unborn child never is.

Second, pro-aborts fight tooth and nail against any effort to provide information to a pregnant woman that may persuade her against abortion.  They are “pro-choice” only if the right choice is made:  abortion.

Third, the “pro-choice” mantra is especially risible coming from Planned Parenthood Worse Than Murder, Inc.:  their blood money empire is based on dead fetuses.  They make no money from a woman not having an abortion.

Abby Johnson, pro-life crusader who was the director of a Planned Parenthood Worse Than Murder Inc. clinic, recalls how abortion was pushed:

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34 Responses to Worse Than Murder Inc. and Choice

  • Satanic forces from the conception of PP,( WTM Inc.), and continuing forward until the beast is finally crushed under the heel of the Immaculata. This is the face of Satan. His depot for the ride to damnation. Poor souls who do not repent and souls propagating the business are happy to be passengers on his train.

    From fox news, today; study indicates Videos not doctored. http://wwwfoxnews.com/politics/2015/09/29/forensic-analysis-planned-parenthood-videos-show-no-evidence-manipulation/?intcmp=hpbt1

    Let us help crush the head of the serpent, Worse than Murder Inc., with our daily Rosaries.

    On Oct. 10th, Saturday, ANF is holding another public square Rosary Rally. The projected number of cities this year is 14,000. We’re getting there. Please spend an hour in prayer with your fellow Catholics to ask Heaven to assist us putting an end to this Satanic organization PP.

    Thank you for your consideration’s.

  • Nazis who had done before and during WW II what Planned Parenthood does today with impunity before the whole world were tried in a Court of Law for crimes against humanity, convicted, and then hung by their necks till they were dead. I would rather that they repent. But Democrats (and these are all Democrats) typically (and sadly) do not repent. Further, while they will escape the capital punishment visited on their Nazi forebearers, they will not escape God’s mercy for the unborn. He hears their cries and He is NOT a disinterested spectator in the events of human affairs. May God help us when He shows forth His mercy. It ain’t a’gonna be pretty.

  • PS, would Pope Francis still oppose the death penalty if he were shown one of those videos of a medical specialist at Planned Parenthood vivisecting a live baby for his organs?

  • A horrifying aspect is that every time I was pregnant, it was really easy to get me worked up with fear from lack of support– even with a great husband, and the long distance support of family, I didn’t have anybody physically there a lot of the time and that’s the level it hits you on. Panic attacks are already an issue, especially among women– I think it’s because of the major lack of visceral support and connection.

    The kind of bullying the transcript describes would be very, very effective on a woman who is already scared, and has the surge of pregnancy related hormones in her system.

  • “The kind of bullying the transcript describes would be very, very effective on a woman who is already scared, and has the surge of pregnancy related hormones in her system.”

    A woman I know was in just that situation Foxfier, 19 years old, abandoned by everyone, and completely terrified, and came very close to aborting her now beloved daughter, the light of her life. Then she heard a baby crying and stormed out of the clinic. To this day she doesn’t know if there was a baby elsewhere in the abortion clinic, she imagined it or it was a cry of a Holy Innocent beyond this Vale of Tears.

  • Cecile Richards swore in testimony that she is; “unaware of any baby being born alive following a botched abortion.”

    See what happens when you make seven figures annually running the Country’s largest abortion facility. You loose sight. You loose the ability to hear. You loose your senses.

    This is the height of ungodliness. The depths of filthiness. This Cecile Richards is bought and paid for. The ownership of one Lucifer who holds her soul in his bloody hand.

    If you knew that your presence at one of these death camps could save the life of a baby, wouldn’t you find the time to show up…even if it was just an hour of your time?

    Two events are happening on Oct. 10th.
    Another prayer Rally in front of as many PP’s around the country as possible and the National Rosary campaign as mentioned above. Please consider attending one of these events. We must not let Cecile Richards rest until she grows a conscious…and tell’s the truth. The baby you save will forever be a constant advocate for you and your loved one’s. Can I prove this? Nope. I am absolutely certain of it, as I am certain that God Loves Us. The baby will never know you on Earth, yet her Angel will be speaking favourably on your behalf to Our Lord and King of Mercy.

  • This is the group that the Republican controlled Congress can’t be bothered to defund because it’s too hard.

  • What a disgrace… the Congress!

  • Almost all Republicans have voted to defund Planned Parenthood and almost all Democrats have voted to continue to fund it. Obama has vowed to veto any spending bill that does not fund Planned Parenthood. How are the Republicans supposed to defund it under those circumstances? Refuse to pass any funding bill and go home? Been there, done that.

  • From Grassfire, division of Grassroots Action Inc., the Senate has voted 77-19 to advance the spending bill. 31 Republican senators sided with dems. Disgraceful.

  • I don’t have the answer, obviously, but a united front wouldn’t hurt even in the face of a veto.

  • Meanwhile Pope Who tells America it needs to abolish the death penalty and writes letters to American states’ governors trying to stop justice for heinous, death-row convicts. These are aids and abettors to Worse than Murder, Inc.

  • Philip, Philip, you obsess too much. It is not necessary to talk about this issue of abortion so much. We have to find a new moral balance; otherwise even the moral edifice of the church is likely to fall like a house of cards, losing the freshness and fragrance of the Gospel.

    –Pope Francis

  • Ginny.

    You go girl.


  • How are the Republicans supposed to defund it under those circumstances?

    I dunno. Go back to passing the 7(?) or so appropriation bills that made up the federal budget. You know, back when we had a budget instead of this perpetual phony-crisis continuing resolution nonsense. Save Health & Human services (assuming that’s where WTMInc get’s its funding) for last to diminish the threat.
    Or is that too crazy to work?

  • On the other hand, if we had some public faces that didn’t reflexively cringe every time a media wag gave them the Very Serious Look of Profound Concern while wanting to know why little Timmy’s trip to Washington was ruined because the Lincoln Memorial was closed, well then, it wouldn’t be that hard to turn it around and say that the Lincoln Memorial was closed because the Democrat President and his Democrat colleagues care more about funnelling your hard-earned tax dollars to a group that chops up babies for parts and that’s wrong. Because it’s wrong to sell baby parts.
    Really, I don’t see why Republicans are afraid to make this fight. Unless, that is, they don’t really believe what they say they believe.
    (N.B. Boehner in my opinon is the false prophet, given the complete and utter failure to move on anything the G.O.P ran on in 2010 & 2014 –other than we think we should be in charge instead of them, of course. But that’s subtext.)

  • “Or is that too crazy to work?”

    How would that defund Planned Parenthood? There is no gimmick here unless you explain how Obama’s veto is to be overridden.

  • “I don’t have the answer, obviously, but a united front wouldn’t hurt even in the face of a veto.”

    I don’t disagree with that, but there has to be a plan better than shut down the government which has been tried and failed as a strategy. One might be to propose legislation banning federal funds for any group trafficking in human body parts. That focuses on the issue at hand and forces the Democrats to play defense on a subject that makes ever portions of their voters upset.

  • “On the other hand, if we had some public faces that didn’t reflexively cringe every time a media wag gave them the Very Serious Look of Profound Concern while wanting to know why little Timmy’s trip to Washington was ruined because the Lincoln Memorial was closed, well then, it wouldn’t be that hard to turn it around and say that the Lincoln Memorial was closed because the Democrat President and his Democrat colleagues care more about funnelling your hard-earned tax dollars to a group that chops up babies for parts and that’s wrong. Because it’s wrong to sell baby parts.”

    Yep, all those government checks will not be coming out because the Republicans, in their ceaseless war on women, hate contraception and Planned Parenthood. That is the way almost all Americans would hear about it from the media.

  • The government checks don’t stop coming, so that’s a media-crat lie. You fight lies with the truth. But you have to be willing to make the fight in order to win it. Right now, we simply forfeit. Because it’s too hard to point out Obama would be the one shutting down the government by his veto, and the Democrats would be the ones keeping it shut by sustaining that veto.

    And all because keeping our tax dolloars going to an organization that sells baby parts is more important to them than government checks.

  • The decrease in the abortions being preformed is due to what? RU-486 or the constant Pro-Life visibility at death camps including news related to abortion?

    Is it going to be a win for pro life by the decision of women to never choose abortion as an option? Will the tide turn, or has it turned already?

    The lawless own the language today. War on women! What might have to happen is the number of pro life witnesses multiplying to the point that the option of abortion becomes, as it already should be, a non-choice. Public opinion becomes a tsunami that shuts down the Murder option. Wishful thinking?

    What else is there?

  • “Because it’s too hard to point out Obama would be the one shutting down the government by his veto, and the Democrats would be the ones keeping it shut by sustaining that veto.”

    Such points were made in the last government shutdown and it didn’t work. Repeating failed strategies is a sure recipe for defeat. A much better strategy is to launch investigative hearings in regard to Planned Parenthood, something some of the smarter Republicans are beginning to do in the House:


    With the power of subpoena much can be uncovered, especially if this is tied in with ongoing civil suits against Planned Parenthood for violation of federal laws regarding body part trafficking and the use of federal funds for abortion related services.

    “By wise counsel do you win your wars” is one of the most sadly neglected passages in the Bible for most Christians.

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  • Government shutdowns have proven not to be quite the political disasters that people feared, and as such are no big deal (plus they lighten traffic a bit in my neck of the woods). On the other hand, they don’t ever seem to accomplish anything.

  • This whole-cloth lie that Federal money is not being used to fund PP abortions reminds me of my Great Aunt Evelyn’s (RIP) reaction to news that the notorious Willy Sutton had robbed her bank branch, “I hope he didn’t get my money.”
    Once money is placed in an organization, it is comingled and used in the whole supply of money. So, if PP commits abortions, federal funds are used to the commit abortions. Of course, the lawyers’ solution would be to establish/incorporate a PP non-profit affiliate, independent of the abortion PP, that only does women’s health stuff and place the Federal $$ therein.
    Another line of questioning should be exorbitant salaries paid, again from Federal monies, much of which is revolved into the democrat party coffers.

  • A much better strategy is to launch investigative hearings in regard to Planned Parenthood,

    I’m sorry. Could you repeat what you were saying about failed strategies. I got distracted by this hysterical disembodied laughter. I was trying to figure out if it was Eric Holder or the ghost of Christopher Stevens I was hearing.

    It wasn’t a cackle, so I know it wasn’t Hillary Clinton.

  • A recent poll indicates that 46% approve of WTM Inc. Aka PP. I’ll bet most of these people voted twice for Obama, who is presiding over the dissolution of this once great country. When the people become dissolute (late 14c., “loose, negligent, morally or religiously lax,” from Latin dissolutus “loose, disconnected,”), the dissolution of the nation is inevitable.

  • Instapundit has a post stating that federally-funded PP funded progressive protesters that threw condoms at GOP Prez hopeful Carly Fiorina.

    In other news, GOP senate eunuchs refuse to rear up on their hind legs and defund.
    The supply of ammunition is woefully inadequate.

  • dear kindred spirits in this blog -i’m still free falling from the pseudo- pastoral visit from the Pontifex Maximus!-
    FOXFIRE- you’re touching on something that may be at the core of the answer to this abortion issue – how do we pro-lifers add to the Corporal works a clause to help all mothers who have children under 24 months + + special needs – on a regular and irregular basis. When i was raising my young family of 5 including twins [74-82], and it is worse now!! it seemed all of society was against us- affordable homes only had 4 bedrooms, you could NOT buy a reasonable vehicle to carry 7 which became 9 in our case – every time we went out, my wife or i were asked : Are they all yours”?? Dr’s office nurses were relentless in their pushing of contraception and a condescending attitude of protege’s of Margaret Sanger – the evil looks i would get in super markets as I pushed a cart of kids with some groceries and wife pushed groceries with some kids…. aisle after aisle- check out was always are they all yours – my youngest when we’d go shopping the well meaning clerk would say ‘ – oh ! out with grand pa today huh?? and my daughter would correct them , forcibly, he’s not my grandpa , HE IS MY DAD!!!
    How do we blunt this societal attack on babies/ families causing the innate fear Foxfire is describing and provide total assurance and confidence to mothers and fathers of all christian faiths that there is a viable, dependable support group easily accessible for you and all your families. Could be a great job for ‘younger’ nursing home prisoners. and assisted living folks who may be looking for something more meaningful than caring for a pet. Even if it is just organized respite care for sleep deprived parents of the colic baby? or a regular ear to sit and listen over coffee when bringing a hot meal?? and being experienced parents, we could instruct the ignorant in child rearing and fear of the Lord. did we know this support once upon a time as a parish? Is this a potential for an apostolate? I’ve grown weary of waiting for Mother Church to get really aggressive on this while babies DIE and the March for Life is little more than a once a year ‘make believe we’re doing’ something self grandizing photo op for ineffective and clueless American Hierarchy.- thoughts….? shoot or salute- i may try and run with this locally and see how we do…..

  • @paul coffey.

    1 for salute.

    When Good Council Homes started up in 1985, they had to rely on prayer and financial support. That combination worked!
    Now with Fr. Benedict Groeschel to assist you from above, I would recommend you give Chris Bell a jingle, to see if he has some good advice to pass along. Chris and Father Benedict founded the successful Good Council Homes in N.J..

    Personally I think the idea is win / win for the stressed out families as well as the forgotten seniors in Assisted Living environments.

    With prayers…go out into the deep for a catch.

  • Paul Coffey – it can’t just be moms with kids– that’s damage control…or maybe an injury metaphor is better— it’s a hospital. The crisis pregnancy is the ER. What about the walking wounded?
    We need to try to figure out how to prevent the damage– keep folks at college from feeling so alone that they’ll share their bodies with total strangers, boy or girlfriends they don’t even especially like, because it’s better than being alone.
    I don’t know how to do this on a grand scale. I can do individual stuff.

  • Philip – Foxfire ; thanks!- I’m looking at the web site for Chris Bell’s Good Counsel homes in nj. and will take that idea forward to our parish pro life team which is pushing joining 40 days for life- I am still stuck on the ‘fear’ word Fox fire used in her earlier note- i know the feeling: when my wife came home after the OBGYN becoming pregnant 2+ years post our twin daughters birth – the dr. was convinced we were going to have twins again – turned out to be just a big bouncy 9lb 6 oz boy named jason paul …. and the dr did the same again 2+ yrs after Jason when 9 lb 8oz damien made his firs appearance…… I could have had my own Bell’s brigade!! i recall the fear and momentary despair whiizziing around my chair looking for a spine when getting the news from my tearfull wife ; thinking there is no one to ask for help with the upcoming workload and the day to day / sleepless nights child tending. i’m going to stop here cause i see good Counsel of N.J. as a ‘ home’ for unwed pregnant girls – VS. helping that group of married women who seek abortion for an ‘ unwanted = i’m scared and overworked and financially strapped” and my husband doesn’t want another child’ pregnancy. there is more than enough need out there- it all gets back to family as i think Firefox implies in her 2nd comment – it is the environment we create everywhere we touch ; take pride in your self, be clear that children are welcome and parenting is a tough job to do well and requires your total selfless giving all the time but i also see that flies in the face of the pagan culture i live in and i do not even have the support of the vicar of Christ. – but as someone on his blog pointed out, my faith is in the Christ ,, not the man in the chair. suggestions are always welcome and needed. pc

  • paul coffey.

    I realize that the home for unwed mothers isn’t the model you were looking for, but my aim was speaking with Chris for ideas that might construct a model of your own design.

    Reading Foxfier’s clear explanation of needs leads me to think of community service groups that are like minded in faith and faced with similar demands while not caving into the lure of false love. A christian community of women who meet regularly to share in tasks while giving others respite.

  • Well….we might steal a page from what some churches do near military training bases– Pensacola was really good about that. Provide transport from colleges to things like a regular “hang out in the parish hall,” specifically for folks who are lonely.
    Set up “bring the kids to play” groups– a lady in a near by parish set up a home school PE class, hired an outside teacher and the moms can put the kids old enough for PE in the class, then go sit in the play room and let the little kids play while they get a bit of a break.
    My husband has gotten a lot of good from the local Knights of Columbus running the RE classes, and he actually joined. (Youngest guy in our area by at LEAST 20 years, although he’s talking to some of the guys he got to know in the “Catholicism refresher” classes.)
    I tried to volunteer with our parish, but it’s all set up with the assumption that you will not have kids around. I’d love to help at the food bank– I can carry more than even the older gentlemen that help. But it’s…ah… not young family friendly, we’ll say.

PopeWatch: Junipero Serra

Tuesday, September 29, AD 2015

6 Responses to PopeWatch: Junipero Serra

  • In his Histoire Universelle, Bishop Bossuet, the tutor of the Dauphin, paints an unflattering picture of the Spanish conquests in the New World
    “The riches of the Americas enticed thither every soldier of fortune, freebooter and profligate bravo who hoped to grow rich by plundering and enslaving the natives…” He gives due credit tot he clergy who sought to protecthem.
    Even-handed in his criticisms, he adds that the same wealth induced “the inhabitants of a certain island to resume their ancestral trade of piracy…”

  • For Bishop Bossuet, if it wasn’t French, it was crap.

  • Were the perpetrators of this crime of defacement of private property members of that ever so tolerant and inclusive liberal progressive movement? Maybe some real Catholic men should exercise their Second Amendment right and offer to defend Carmel Mission Basilica. Bullies who face the business end of a loaded firearm usually retreat into cowardice with nary a shot fired.

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  • ” Even-handed in his criticisms, he adds that the same wealth induced “the inhabitants of a certain island to resume their ancestral trade of piracy…” – At what point did the Saxon stop?
    In any case, said conquistadores recently had finally thrown out of Europe the last of the Muslim invaders and brought out of the stone age and away from human sacrifice the benighted savages with whom they strove to share the rewards of eternal life which Christ won for all mankind through His life, death, and resurrection.

  • The Spanish did not throw out of Europe the last of the Muslim invaders. Not even my beloved Poles did that in 1683. However, Spain did rid itself of the Moors and put an end to the Aztec human sacrifice. For that they got the Black Legend.


Monday, September 28, AD 2015

“Concelebration, whereby the unity of the priesthood is appropriately manifested, has remained in use to this day in the Church both in the east and in the west. For this reason it has seemed good to the Council to extend permission for concelebration…”
Sacrosanctum Concilium, 57
The above from Rorate Caeli.  If I were forced to pick one picture that summed up the Church in this pontificate, I could not do better than pointing to the above.
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14 Responses to Priorities

PopeWatch: Plots

Monday, September 28, AD 2015



Back just prior to the Protestant Reformation a Jewish merchant in Florence was friends with a Catholic merchant.  The Jewish merchant expressed a desire to convert, but decided to go to Rome to observe the workings of the leadership of the Church.  The Catholic merchant was dismayed, assuming the corruption at Rome would convince his friend to have nothing to do with Catholicism.  To the contrary!  A month later the Jewish merchant was back in Florence and told his Catholic friend that he was going to be baptized next Easter.  When his friend cautiously inquired about what he had seen in Rome, his Jewish friend said that what he saw there convinced him to convert.  If he ran his business the way the Church in Rome operated he would be bankrupt and in jail in a week.  Yet the Church had survived for 15 centuries with such villainy at the top!  It must be from God!

Little has apparently changed in 500 years:



The authorized biography of Cardinal Godfried Danneels, out next week, is even more of a bombshell than expected. Not only do the two authors, Jürgen Mettepenningen and Karim Schelkens, reveal that the Cardinal was a regular member of a secret pressure group of Churchmen that met in the Swiss town of Sankt-Gallen, but the Cardinal himself has publicly and good-humoredly admitted the fact.

Danneels even said that what was officially but discreetly labeled “the Sankt-Gallen group” was referred to by its members as “the Mafia”. Its self-imposed aim was to counter the growing influence of Cardinal Ratzinger under the pontificate of Saint John Paul II, serving as a sort of outlet where handpicked cardinals and bishops could express their impatience at the traditional mindset of the Pope and his closest counsellor.

The Belgian press doesn’t hesitate to say that one of the group’s primary goals was the promotion of Cardinal Bergoglio (now Pope Francis) in view of John Paul II’s nearing death – something the book itself, which is not yet available in bookstores, perhaps clarifies. The Sankt-Gallen group certainly aimed to promote the ideas and preferences for which they had found a champion in Pope Francis.

Said Schelkens in an interview this week: “The election of Bergoglio was prepared in Sankt-Gallen, without doubt. And the main lines of the program the Pope is carrying out are those that Danneels and Co were starting to discuss more than ten years ago.”

“They wanted Church reform, they wanted to bring the Church closer to the hearts of people; they moved forward by stages,” commented Mettepenningen. “At the beginning of the year 2000, when John Paul II’s end was becoming more foreseeable, they thought more strategically about what was going to happen to the Church after John Paul II. When Cardinal Silvestrini joined the group it took on a more tactical and strategic character.”

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18 Responses to PopeWatch: Plots

  • When the Son of Man” comes….will He find any faith in….Rome?

  • Don. If you wish to remove the past 3 incorrect links please do so.
    I find Dr. Kelly B.’S synopsis interesting in light of our time.
    For your discernment.

  • I believe this is the correct link.


    Let me state that I do not believe that Pope Francis is the False Prophet, the Anti-Christ or any of a number of other individuals. I do think he is a bad pope. It has been a while since the Church last had one, but we do have one now. By a bad pope I mean a pope, who while personally blameless in his life, engages in foolish and counterproductive actions as pope. The events of the coming Synod will determine whether the Pope proceeds up a notch in the scale of bad popes.

  • One of my favorite books is Isabel The Catholic Queen by the late Dr. Warren Carroll. In Queen Isabel’ s time the Church in Spain was run by corrupt and in a few cases despicable clergy. King Fernando’s eight year old illegitimate son was made an archbishop of Zaragoza. Borgia became Pope during her reign.

    Things look bleak for the Church today. Do not fall into despair about it. We are in a period of chastisement and must endure it.

  • Penguins Fan and Donald.
    Thank you both.
    No despair here. The meeting next month will be revealing in itself.
    Hope for the best, plan for the worse I suppose.

  • Mgr Ronald Knox once remarked that those who sail in the barque of Peter who not be edified by what goe son in the engine-room.

  • True, but lately we have also seen very unedifying spectacles carried out in broad daylight on deck.

  • To MPS,
    Thankfully the engine room of the Barque of Peter isn’t a nuclear reactor. I would hate to think of what would have happened if we had run the engine room of my 688 class Los Angeles Fast Attack in this way.

  • It seems there are many false prophets and many anti-Christs among us.
    I wonder if the book on Daneels will tell how aware / complicit Bergoglio was before taking the Office of Peter.

  • The mystery of Pope Benedict’s resignation has been
    exposed. A secret society of radical, heretical clergymen
    conspired to put pressure on Benedict to resign and to
    elect a member of their secret society to the papacy.
    If my understanding is correct, all of the members
    of this radical society have been condemned by the
    Church and they have been ex-communicated, which
    leaves one with the impression that Bergoglio has
    been ex-communicated, since he most likely was
    involved with this society. Further, it appears that
    this radical, heretical society controls the election of future
    popes. This is diabolical.

  • In the Catholic Church the laity hope the clergy will prove honest, competent and devoted to Christ. More and more evidence is emerging that most of the powers that be at the Vatican currently fail on all three scores.

    T’were ever so, as your story of the Jewish Merchant (Boccaccio?) shows.

    “They wanted Church reform, they wanted to bring the Church closer to the hearts of people;

    I suppose that’s easier than bringing the hearts of people closer to the Church. Somebody remind me: How’d that whole “the world sets the agenda for the church” thing work out again?

  • “T’were ever so, as your story of the Jewish Merchant (Boccaccio?) shows.”



  • Good stuff Don. Thanks for bringing it to light which is probably the best that can be done right now. Rest assured God will make His will known at the appropriate time. In the meantime we can all pray to St Michael whose feast day, along with Saints Gabriel and Raphael we celebrate today.

  • Franco wrote, “Further, it appears that this radical, heretical society controls the election of future popes.”
    It is fanciful to suppose that a coterie or clique, however influential, could control the votes of two-thirds of the Sacred College, more especially if there were similar groups opposed to their doctrine or their policies.
    Remember Cardinal Begoglio (as he then was) was runner-up in the previous conclave, consisting largely of appointees from St Joh Paul’s long pontificate.

  • This book was mentioned on the Rush Limbaugh radio program yesterday after a caller mentioned his suspicion of why a healthy elderly pope would resign so that a healthy elderly Cardinal could become pope. It triggered an article Rush said he read in the NCR some time ago about a book being written by some European cardinal about a group of cardinals who referred to themselves as “the Mafia.” This book will become a best seller if Rush reads it and finds some things in it that he can talk about on his program in the context of current news happenings.

    I remember reading sometime soon after Francis was elected pope that he was the next runner-up in the election before when Benedict XV1 was elected. That “group” has been around and working for a while.

  • MPS

    I don’t believe a secret society of radical leftists,
    similar to the Masons, who call themselves the Mafia,
    who plotted since 1996 to take control of the papacy,
    who risked being condemned and excommunicated,
    who have no regard for the rules governing the election
    of a pope, who demand that the Catholic Church must
    submit to the values of the modern world, and who
    admit openly of their plot to transform the Church
    with laughter, will surrender control of the papacy
    to a future Ratzinger. I read that Cardinal Rodriguez
    of Honduras, a progressive similar to Bergoglio, was
    the runner-up to Bergoglio in 2013, which leads one
    to believe that the Vatican Mafia of radical leftist clergymen
    have a firm grip on the papacy. However, God is in
    charge and the Mafia’s ambitions could come to a
    swift end.

  • MPS “It is fanciful to suppose that a coterie or clique, however influential, could control the votes of two-thirds of the Sacred College,”
    I disagree Michael. except that Perhaps the word “influence” would be better than “control” The anti-Catholics within the Church have been working hard to effect change and they have had a great deal of success influencing the votes of two thirds of the Sacred College.

  • Anzlyne wrote, “Perhaps the word “influence” would be better than “control””
    Indeed. But that would be true only if those influenced were in general agreement in doctrine and policy. Now, that I believe to be true, but I do not accept that it is the work of a clique.

Benjamin Franklin on Chess

Monday, September 28, AD 2015


Benjamin Franklin had ceaseless energy to match his brilliant mind.  In 1779 while our ambassador to France, and involved in ceaseless negotiations to make sure that the new found alliance did not founder, he found time to write a brief monograph on chess, perhaps his favorite game:

The game of Chess is not merely an idle amusement. Several very valuable qualities of the mind, useful in the course of human life, are to be acquired or strengthened by it, so as to become habits, ready on all occasions.

1. Foresight, which looks a little into futurity, and considers the consequences that may attend an action; for it is continually occuring to the player, ‘If I move this piece, what will be the advantages or disadvantages of my new situation? What use can my adversary make of it to annoy me? What other moves can I make to support it, and to defend myself from his attacks?

2. Circumspection, which surveys the whole chessboard, or scene of action; the relations of the several pieces and situations, the dangers they are respectively exposed to, the several possibilities of their aiding each other, the probabilities that the adversary may make this or that move, and attack this or the other piece, and what different means can be used to avoid his stroke, or turn its consequences against him.

3. Caution, not to make our moves too hastily. This habit is best acquired, by observing strictly the laws of the game; such as, If you touch a piece, you must move it somewhere; if you set it down, you must let it stand. And it is therefore best that these rules should be observed, as the game becomes thereby more the image of human life, and particularly of war . . .

And lastly, we learn by Chess the habit of not being discouraged by present appearances in the state of our affairs, the habit of hoping for a favourable change, and that of persevering in the search of resources. The game is so full of events, there is such a variety of turns in it, the fortune of it is so subject to sudden vicissitudes, and one so frequently, after long contemplation, discovers the means of extricating one’s self from a supposed insurmountable difficulty, that one is encouraged to continue the contest to the last, in hopes of victory from our own skill, or at least of getting a stalemate from the negligence of our adversary . . .

If your adversary is long in playing, you ought not to hurry him, or express any uneasiness at his delay. You should not sing, nor whistle, nor look at your watch, not take up a book to read, nor make a tapping with your feet on the floor, or with your fingers on the table, nor do anything that may disturb his attention. For all these things displease; and they do not show your skill in playing, but your craftiness or your rudeness.

You ought not to endeavour to amuse and deceive your adversary, by pretending to have made bad moves, and saying that you have now lost the game, in order to make him secure and careless, and inattentive to your schemes: for this is fraud and deceit, not skill in the game.

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4 Responses to Benjamin Franklin on Chess


Sunday, September 27, AD 2015

17 These are wells without water, clouds that are carried with a tempest; to whom the mist of darkness is reserved for ever.

18 For when they speak great swelling words of vanity, they allure through the lusts of the flesh, through much wantonness, those that were clean escaped from them who live in error.

19 While they promise them liberty, they themselves are the servants of corruption: for of whom a man is overcome, of the same is he brought in bondage.

20 For if after they have escaped the pollutions of the world through the knowledge of the Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ, they are again entangled therein, and overcome, the latter end is worse with them than the beginning.

21 For it had been better for them not to have known the way of righteousness, than, after they have known it, to turn from the holy commandment delivered unto them.

22 But it is happened unto them according to the true proverb, The dog is turned to his own vomit again; and the sow that was washed to her wallowing in the mire.

2 Peter 2:  17-22



Both the videos should be parodies, but sadly only the one below from those brilliantly twisted folks at The Lutheran Satire is an intentional one:


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4 Responses to Parodies

More Mush From Pope Wimp

Sunday, September 27, AD 2015

13 Responses to More Mush From Pope Wimp

  • Correct. Perhaps this is God’s punishment for decades of ambivalence and apathy. I am thoroughly depressed and very angry. But in the end God wins and the liberal progressive enviro-wacko worshippers of goddes Gaia lose, whether Pontiff or secular feminist Democrat.

  • Bergoglio will go down in History as one of the modern times Non-Catholic Popes who occupied Vatican City.

    For some reason, I have a feeling, if Jesus doesn’t come back soon, the next pope will be an open sodomite.

    Of course, the road is being prepared now by Bergoglio and his buddies for any kind of popes in the future because and under the guise of… yes, you got it…. MERCY!!

    The new and young generation of so-called “Catholics” will not be distinguishable from any other atheistic or hippie generation.

    As Bergoglio and co. wanted it, the Catholic Church is progressing, shouldn’t be rigid and must welcome everybody, anybody.

    No correction of sinners, no leading any one to Heaven.

    Just be nice to everybody, and come on in, let’s party!!

  • . Did he suggest that immigrants should fill out paperwork as his parents did? Rhetorical…just kidding.

  • Assuming God’s “mercy” without repentance or true sorrow for sins is beyond flirting with the sin of presumption, a sin that seems to be in vogue at the synod these days

  • Most US Catholics come from the East Coast, or are recent East Coast transplants, where (for historically valid reasons involving our persecution) the hierarchical clergy establishes the people’s forums and expressions of Catholic life, it represents Catholicism both to lukewarm Catholics and outsiders, and Catholicism has an ethnic/cultural/tribal definition more than anything. And it is a given and comfortable, but now far less important, institution.

    Chaput has referred to this as “the culture of the bishop.” I think American Catholicism needs this pope, if for no other reason than to diminish the importance of the episcopacy in American orthodox Catholic life. We need an orthodox Catholicism that recognizes the authority of magisterial statements, but recognizes that Jesus is the center of the Catholic consciousness, and “Christendom” as Kierkegaard might say, can be caustic. It may be a more radical and evangelical faith without being weighed down by constant working within diocesan infrastructure and deferment to episcopal statements.

  • Granted, a dynamic pope who sees his role as Catholciism’s only formally global figure in an evangelical light, would be better in an age of global media. Having the pope primarily talk about Jesus Christ to the world would be the best case scenario, but Francis might be what we need to wean us off an Ultramontanism that was awesome as a 19th and 20th century movement, but may not work in the 21st century.

  • Originally, American Catholics were an immigrant Church, first Irish, then German, then Italian, then Slavic Europe, stretching from Boston to Baltimore, stretching west to the Twin Cities, Milwaukee, Chicago and St. Louis.

    That has little impact on today.

    I did not watch a minute of the papal visit
    Certain people annoy me when I see them on television so I shut them off immediately. The Obamas, the Clintons, Democrat talking heads, actors spouting off on politics, etc. I just know too much about the Roman Pontiff to want to watch him or listen to him and any good he says gets drowned out by his politics.

  • Penguin Fan is right. I, too, didn’t watch one minute of the Papal visit where he committed one sin of omission after another by not proclaiming the true Catholic faith and giving a false impression of what it is. It was too discouraging and a temptation to be angry. Better to pray for the Pope than listen to him as he leads us down a path Christ wishes us not to follow.

  • All one needs to know is how the Obamas fell over themselves welcoming Pope Frances to the U.S. Not since Cardinal Bernardin’s “Seamless Garment” has Obama and the Democrat Party been given such a gift. The leader of the Catholic Church believes “climate change” is real; or as I put it: “The Pope believes God made a mistake when he created life in the world” (dependent on carbon dioxide and oxygen), and Obama and his ilk stand ready to correct it with help from his Holiness.

  • I stopped watching TV many years ago, I can’t even say how long. Since the Internet, TV is ON only for some local news. Bergoglio’s visit meant nothing to me. He and most politicians and Hollywood actors and the current pop culture are all in the same garbage bin as far as I’m concerned. Even the Internet needs to be taken a break from, which I do to read my Bible, the ONLY guide, entertainment, inspiration, source of knowledge and wisdom and the personal, intimate friend who, of all people, is not fake. If and when the Catholic Church will go away or collapse, the only thing that will still remain forever is the Bible. The Bible is the only source to know God. Tradition was built on the Bible. No Bible = No Tradition = No Christianity. It is a fact in spite of what the Church teaches that Tradition is equally important. No, it is not. Too much emphasis is put on humans (like Bergoglio, for example) rather than on the ONE who created them. We sometimes venerate humans more than God. We see it all the time. I read on some websites than Catholics love Bergoglio more than their/his Church. Religion is most of all…personal. You can’t go out in the world naked.

  • I call him the chief social justice warrior in charge.

    He savors the things of man and the flesh, not of God and the Spirit.

    You know he’s wrong because the lying liberal (I repeat myself again) media love him.

  • Interesting that the Lutheran satire folks took a rather stinky shot at the Council of Trent at the closing of this video.

  • Well, they are Lutherans after all! I wish Eye of the Tiber would do videos of a similar nature.

The First Papal Visit to America–Sort Of

Sunday, September 27, AD 2015


To one who turns the pages of your history and reflects upon the causes of what has been accomplished it is apparent that the triumphal progress of Divine religion has contributed in no small degree to the glory and prosperity which your country now enjoys. It is indeed true that religion has its laws and institutions for eternal happiness but It is also undeniable that it dowers life here below with so many benefits that it could do no more even if the principal reason for its existence were to make men happy during the brief span of their earthly life.


The first papal visit to the United States is usually thought to be that of Pope Paul VI in 1965.  However, Cardinal Pacelli, the future Pius XII, visited the United States in October-November 1936, becoming the first man who served as pope to set foot in the land of the free and the home of the brave.  As Papal Secretary of State, foreign travel came as part of the job, but the purpose behind his visit is still something of a mystery.  Some historians have claimed that he struck a deal with FDR by which the United States would establish diplomatic relations with the Vatican in exchange for the Church silencing radio priest Father Coughlin, initially a supporter of FDR but by 1936 a fierce critic.

It was usual for Pacelli to take an annual vacation and he changed plans to visit Switzerland for the United States on short notice.  He met with FDR on November 5, the day after his re-election.  He did secure a promise that he would appoint a personal representative from him to the Vatican, although this promise was not fulfilled until 1939, after Pacelli was elected Pope.

Pacelli never met with Father Coughlin.  During his tour of the US, Pacelli  brushed aside questions about Coughlin from newspaper reporters, although he made it clear that the Vatican did not agree with his criticisms of Roosevelt.

After the election Coughlin did cease broadcasting briefly, although he returned to the radio in 1937.  As for Pacelli, he came away with a keen perception of both the strengths and weaknesses of the Church in the US.  His comments in Sertum Laetitiae, issued in 1939 on the one hundred and fiftieth anniversary of the establishment of the US hierarchy, now seem prophetic:

12. Among the associations of the laity – the list is too long to allow of a complete enumeration – there are those which have won for themselves laurels of unfading glory – Catholic Action, the Marian Congregation, the Confraternity of Christian Doctrine; their fruits are the cause of joy and they bear the promise of still more joyful harvest in the future. Likewise the Holy Name Society, an excellent leader in the promotion of Christian worship and piety.

13. Over a manifold activity of the laity, carried on in various localities according to the needs of the times, is placed the National Catholic Welfare Conference, an organization which supplies a ready and well-adapted instrument for your Episcopal ministry.

14. The more important of these institutions We were able to view briefly during the month of October, 1936, when We journeyed across the ocean and had the joy of knowing personally you and the field of your activities. The memory of what We then admired with Our own eyes will always remain indelible and a source of joy in Our heart.

15. It is proper then that, with sentiments of adoration, We offer with you thanks to God and that We raise to Him a canticle of thanksgiving: “Give glory to the God of heaven; for his mercy endureth for ever” (Psalms cxxxv: 26). The Lord Whose goodness knows no limits, having filled your land with the bounty of His gifts, has likewise granted to your churches energy and power and has brought to fruition the results of their tireless labors. Having paid the tribute of Our gratitude to God, from Whom every good thing takes its origin, We recognize, dearly beloved, that this rich harvest which We joyfully admire with you today is due also to the spirit of initiative and to the persistent activity of the pastors and of the faithful; We recognize that it is due also to your clergy who are inclined to decisive action and who execute your orders with zeal; to the members of all the religious Orders and congregations of men who, distinguished in virtue, vie with each other in cultivating the vineyard of the Lord: to the innumerable religious women who, often in silence and unknown to men, consecrate themselves with exemplary devotion to the cause of the Gospel, veritable lilies in the Garden of Christ and delight of the Saints.

16. We desire, however, that this Our praise be salutary. The consideration of the good which has been done must not lead to slackening which might degenerate into sluggishness; it must not issue in a vainglorious pleasure which flatters the mind; it should stimulate renewed energies so that evils may be avoided and those enterprises which are useful, prudent and worthy of praise may more surely and more solidly mature. The Christian, if he does honor to the name he bears, is always an apostle; it is not permitted to the Soldier of Christ that he quit the battlefield, because only death puts an end to his military service.

17. You well know where it is necessary that you exercise a more discerning vigilance and what program of action should be marked out for priests and faithful in order that the religion of Christ may overcome the obstacles in its path and be a luminous guide to the minds of men, govern their morals and, for the sole purpose of salvation, permeate the marrow and the arteries of human society. The progress of exterior and material possessions, even though it is to be considered of no little account, because of the manifold and appreciable utility which it gives to life, is nonetheless not enough for man who is born for higher and brighter destinies. Created indeed to the image and likeness of God, he seeks God with a yearning that will not be repressed and always groans and weeps if he places the object of his love where Supreme Truth and the Infinite Good cannot be found.

18. Not with the conquest of material space does one approach to God, separation from Whom is death, conversion to Whom is life, to be established in Whom is glory; but under the guidance of Christ with the fullness of sincere faith, with unsullied conscience and upright will, with holy works, with the achievement and the employment of that genuine liberty whose sacred rules are found proclaimed in the Gospel. If, instead, the Commandments of God are spurned, not only is it impossible to attain that happiness which has place beyond the brief span of time which is allotted to earthly existence, but the very basis upon which rests true civilization is shaken and naught is to be expected but ruins over which belated tears must be shed. How, in fact, can the public weal and the glory of civilized life have any guarantee of stability when right is subverted and virtue despised and decried? Is not God the Source and the Giver of law? Is He not the inspiration and the reward of virtue with none like unto Him among lawgivers (Cf. Job XXXVI:22)? This, according to the admission of all reasonable men, is everywhere the bitter and prolific root of evils: the refusal to recognize the Divine Majesty, the neglect of the moral law, the origin of which is from Heaven, or that regrettable inconstancy which makes its victims waver between the lawful and the forbidden, between justice and iniquity.

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7 Responses to The First Papal Visit to America–Sort Of

  • Teaching Truth for the salvation of souls.
    What a concept.
    Paragraph 22 is beautiful.

  • In fairness, the Holy Father has touched hearts in very meaningful and positive ways. This visit to our Nation may of been a turning point for folks who have been away from the church, away from God. The conversion effect is difficult to gauge. God the Good Shepherd knows his sheep, calls them and searching for the wayward one’s. The positive aspects of his visit must be considered along with the disappointing….in my humble opinion.
    As mentioned many times before, God is in charge. His victory and Glory be now and forever.

  • “As mentioned many times before, God is in charge.”

    Once a priest visited a farmer and was impressed by the crops he was raising on a patch of ground that had hitherto been wasteland. He went on and on about the good crops that he and God were raising. The farmer listened for a while, and then he burst out: “With all due respect Father, but you should of seen this parcel when God was working it by Hisself!”

    Moral: God will usually not step into human affairs, unless we are doing our share, and He should not be counted upon to save us from sloth and folly.

  • Good morning Don.
    My mention of God being in charge wasn’t to be taken as a “throw in the towel,” rather it was mentioned to recall the unforseen works that He is privileged too, and we are not. He makes the seeds germinate with manure.
    Sometimes it stinks to be near this process, but the farmer who trusts in the germination process recalls that he himself didn’t germinate the seed, but the one he trusts did.

    This is not a free pass nor a condemnation statement, rather a belief that God can make the sweetest lemonade out of the most tart of lemons.

    Your views are shared with greatest admiration because they cause deep reflection and the discerning heart & mind will be prepared to follow Christ in this storm, regardless of the helmsman.
    For that I thank you Donald.

  • “My mention of God being in charge wasn’t to be taken as a “throw in the towel,”

    I didn’t take it as such Philip. I simply wished to underline that outside of Scripture one of the truest sayings about the relationship of God and Man is Ben Franklin’s “God helps them who helps themselves.” Too often, and I do not put you in this category, devout Catholics are content to simply rely upon God alone to fix bad situations. That simply is not the way God usually works.

  • Donald.
    I agree with you.
    Too much history to dispute that the Lord fixes bad situation’s, but every now and then we see good results from instruments in union with His will.
    Have a great Sunday.
    Peace to you and your family.

  • Pope Pius XII reflections on his visit here are insightful, loving, beautiful and actionable. They are even more valuable today than 1939. Thanks Donald for bringing this to our attention especially when we have such a contrasting occupant as Pope. Hopefully, the comments of Pope Pius XII will enjoy greater circulation in view of the coming Synod.

September 27, 1945: Hirohito Comes to MacArthur

Sunday, September 27, AD 2015

Emperor and Shogun

When MacArthur took up his command as Supreme Commander Allied Powers it was suggested by aides that he summon Hirohito to appear before him.  MacArthur rejected that suggestion, stating that it was important that Hirohito come to him voluntarily.  That he did on September 27, 1945, the first of eight meetings between the Emperor and the American Shogun.  The meeting lasted only a few minutes with Hirohito taking complete responsibility for the War and requesting that any punishment for the War fall on him.  MacArthur said that the War was over and that he wished to work with the Emperor for the betterment of Japan. 

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One Response to September 27, 1945: Hirohito Comes to MacArthur

  • My father loved history, not as much as fluorine and other halogens perhaps, but a former co-worker of his said Dad would hide away in his office reading some history book while pondering some problem in the lab. After doing so, he’d come out with the solution to the vexing problem. Thank you for including these tidbits on the blog.

Pro-Abort Ultramontanists?

Saturday, September 26, AD 2015

Robert Brady


A telling symbol for this pontificate:

As Congress members rushed to touch Pope Francis after Thursday’s historic address on the House floor, Rep. Bob Brady reportedly made a beeline for the podium to swipe the Holy Father’s discarded water glass.

The Pennsylvania congressman immediately took a sip out of the glass and brought it back to his office, ABC News reported.

“The congressman is a Catholic and has immense respect for the Holy Father,” Rep. Brady’s Chief of Staff Stan White told ABC.

His office confirmed that Mr. Brady drank from the water and shared it with members of his staff and his wife, Debra Brady.

Rep. Brady “was immensely moved by the speech. He thought the Holy Father spoke to issues he cared deeply about … especially caring about the poor and the Holy Father’s concern about our environment,” Mr. White told ABC.

The congressman kept the remainder of the water and plans to sprinkle it on his grandchildren, Mr. White said.

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26 Responses to Pro-Abort Ultramontanists?

  • Perhaps, Mr. Brady’s love for the Holy Father will bring him to acknowledge the immortal souls infused at procreation with sovereign personhood and the image of God. We have Jesus Christ on the altar in the Blessed Sacrament. The Vicar of Christ on earth is momentous but the Son of God, Jesus Christ, in the Real Presence takes precedence.

  • A Cad!
    Maybe he could sell his saliva on E bay to help fund Worse the Murder Inc. Mr. Brady that is.

    What a fink.

  • I have grown tired of abortionists in public office who cal themselves Catholic.

  • Wouldn’t it have been great if Pope Francis speaking before Congress would have announced the excommunication any Catholic who voted for any pro-abortion measure, and then proceeded to read off the names. After that he would publicly pray for aborted babies, their mothers and all the people who support abortion. When finished he would exit the room. Just imagine the impact such an act would have. I would call that doing his job. But as it is……utter disappointment. How sad.

  • John Fink murdered his best friend. His friend, in his dying breath, called out “FINK” . “FINK” means a guy who can murder his best friend without remorse. Thought I’d add this bit of infamy.

  • Yes, Michael Dowd, it would have been great, and probably would have scared off a couple of terrorist attacks.

  • Pro-Abort Ultramontanist? How about superstitious fool.

  • Thanks Mary.
    Fink-ism. Interesting.

  • None of Pope Francis’ humility wore off on this jerk who made sure to turn it into a photo op.

  • Back in 2008, both of the Democrat presidential candidates went on the record
    saying that they did not support same-sex marriage. It didn’t hurt their support
    on the left because it was understood by all that neither Obama nor Hillary actually
    meant a word of it. And here we are in 2015, and both Obama and Hillary have
    ‘evolved’ their stands– no surprise there.
    So now we have a Pope who has gone on the record to say that he believes the
    Church has been ‘too obsessed’ with gays and abortion. He’s stood before the
    Congress of a government that both declared same-sex marriage to be a constitutional
    right and refused to defund Planned Parenthood— and chose to speak out against
    the death penalty. It think it’s understandable for Congressman Brady to fangirl
    at this point, for Francis’ underwhelming defense of marriage and the family comes off as
    much a patronizing sop to the center as Obama and Clinton’s lip service back in 2008.

  • Michael Dowd.

    What a courageous statement that would of made. Might of even saved a few million lives, and souls. We will never know, but this we do know. The doubts that you can be Catholic and pro-death, have been increased, instead of clear and concise teaching which would of taken all doubt away.

    ( who am I to judge..not a liberal… me? )

  • Representative Bob Brady did a public stunt to look pious and saintly and devout. He is none of those things. Being an aider and abetter of the murder of unborn children, he has one fate awaiting him except that he repents.

  • PS, he may need that water in hell.

  • Clinton,
    The Pope has replaced the abortion obsession with the global warming obsession. Rebecca Hamilton writing in the National Catholic Register said in the meet with Congress, the Pope was “channeling Jesus.”
    Apparently Jesus wants Brazil and Mexico to continue to have high murder rates through their no death penalty…not even for cartel leaders like Guzman who has twice escaped maximum security which ccc #2267 asserts is perfectly safe and secure….that’s why the dp is rarely necessary. To follow modern peripheral Catholicism is to risk crack addiction….unless one has sufficient Brandy….Old Testament..Proverbs 31:6….” give strong drink to him who is perishing, wine to him who is on the edge of the abyss.”. I passed the edge of the abyss when I read the congress meet speech at the abortion/ death penalty passage. If Francis is channeling Jesus,, why did Jesus inspire Romans 13:4.

  • God help us. It’s worse than than I thought.

  • This makes sense given that Bob Brady (my congressman) is basically a mafia boss and thug, and they have historically had very superstitious Catholic-flavored but basically magical ideas of religion.

  • And, oh, Ken, you don’t think Pope Frank’s very well photographed and opportunistic displays of humility constitutes a photo-op? No, I think that Brady captured the flavor of the day. Not that anyone needs to suggest shameless ostentation to a man who flirted with having a reality show called “Boss” (in the sense of “urban political boss”) made about him.

  • Mr. Brady is starting to remind me of the type of parishioner that pushes for clown masses.
    A entertain me catholic, who can’t get enough of the wine and cheese.

    Meet greet and repeat for the betterment of himself… after all, what’s else is there?

  • Y’all said it well.

    He’s a creepy little fool who pulled a stunt that he hoped would make him seem like a Pope Francis devotee, without requiring any actual belief.

  • A grown man stole the Pope’s drinking cup to smell his saliva. How ridiculous and very weird. I can’t stop laughing at how bizarre he looks sniffing that cup. And he’s a congressman? Wow. Thanks for the laugh.

  • As I said on a previous thread, I do not believe that pf is actually pro-life. Given his reception in Washington by every pro-abort loon, I think they agree with me. There is no chance they would be as excited as they are if they thought he actually was against abortion.

  • When are the bishops going to start telling Catholics that it is a mortal sin against the 5th commandment to join an organization like the Nazi Party or the KKK because of their discrimination against people of certain religions or races, denying them their human rights – with no conditions exonerating this sin? How could joining an organization like the Democratic Party that denies the right to life, the most important human right of all, to all unborn babies, and uses its electoral power to deny them their right to life, not be a mortal sin?

    When are the U.S. bishops going to stand up and teach the laws of God being consistent to the teachings in the Catechism? How can simply joining an organization that discriminates against certain people be a mortal sin, but joining an organization responsible for denying the right to life to the unborn, causing the murder of over 58,000,000 lives, those Catholics claim to be created by God, not be a mortal sin?

  • “I do not believe that pf is actually pro-life.”

    I believe he is. Unfortunately, I believe he is like many of his leftist friends (and he is a leftist) who consider abortion just one of many social ills. Other ills such a climate change, any unequal distribution of income, any poverty etc. are on a profoundly more important level and cause for greater emphasis.

    There are many a leftist priest and bishop however, who, from what I can tell, do not think abortion is an evil.

  • Agreed Phillip. I think he is at least anti-abortion. I’m not sure what he has said about other life issues like artificial birth control, IVF etc … But his leveling of all the sins or unwillingness to Decry weight or gravity of abortion in this world today reminds me of Protestants who think that all sins are equal.
    . His concern about social justice doesn’t seem to begin at the beginning….

  • “His concern about social justice doesn’t seem to begin at the beginning….”

    It doesn’t even seem to end at its proper end – Jesus and eternal life. Rather, it all seems ordered to man and his material state. That, I believe, is the crux of the problem. He forgets the Cross and it being ordered, through Christ, to an everlasting Kingdom.

  • Phillip, I appreciate your comments. I guess I just don’t know how one can be against a holocaust and then put it on the same moral plane as unemployment, as his acolyte, Cupich, does. Since pf said that the two greatest evils are youth unemployment and the loneliness of the old, he isn’t even on the same moral plane as Cupich. So, is such a person truly anti-abortion. Logically, I conclude no.