Planet Money: How the University of Notre Dame ranks…

Monday, September 21, AD 2015


At the sametime academic administrators at the University of Notre Dame (UND) formed a faculty committee to consider reducing UND’s Theology requirement to one course, National Public Radio’s Planet Money team created an interesting ranking of 4-year undergraduate programs.


Here’s how UND ranks:

  • It’s not one of the nation’s top 15 “schools for making money,” which measures income 10 years after graduation (50%), on-time graduation rates (25%) and net price (25%). (Hoyas have no fear: Georgetown is #7!)
  • It’s #8 for “schools that make financial sense,” which measures share of students who receive Pell Grants (16%), net price for families making <$48k (16%), share of students who are first-generation college students (16%), default rates (16%), on-time graduation rates (16%) and average income 10 years after graduation (16%). (Once again, Hoyas have no fear, Georgetown in #4!)
  • It’s not one of the nation’s top 15 “schools that emphasize upward mobility,” which measures on-time graduation rate (50%), default rate (16%), share of students receiving federal loans (16%), average income six years after graduation (16%). (Have no fear, Fightin’ Irish, neither is Georgetown!)

Clearly, Georgetown is the better choice for parents whose primary interest are that doing so makes financial sense and their children are likely to earn more $$$s following graduation. Isn’t that what most interests many parents today?

The data suggest to parents that they shouldn’t send their children to UND so they’ll make more $$$s and/or be more upwardly mobile. However, correlating the curriculum review with these findings, does it make greater financial sense for parents to send their children to UND for a distinctively Catholic undergraduate education?




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U.S. Catholic higher education: The National Labor Relations Board upholds Catholic identity more than many U.S. bishops and administrators?

Friday, September 4, AD 2015


When the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) abandoned its “substantial religious character” test in December 2015 as a measure of whether a Catholic university or college is sufficiently “Catholic” enough to remain exempt from NRLB jurisdiction, administrators at the nation’s institutions of Catholic higher education breathed a sigh of relief. In short, the NLRB said that it will continue to use the U.S. Supreme Court’s ruling in NRLB v. Catholic Bishop of Chicago (1979) (“Catholic Bishop”) as its standard for determining whether an institution is sufficiently religiuos to qualify to be exempt from NLRB oversight.

Those administrators—especially those at Manhattan College and Seattle University—may have breathed that sigh of relief too soon, however.

In a decision last week, NLRB Regional Director Karen Fernback judged that Manhattan College is not exempt from NLRB oversight because its hiring and interview practices do not promote the development of a religious environment. That is, as these practices concern adjunct faculty, Manhattan College did not establish that adjunct faculty are hired to perform “a specific role in creating or maintaining a religious educational environment.”



Uh oh. To teach as an adjunct professor at a Catholic university or college, that individual must facilitate the creation and/or maintenance of a Catholic environment? Fernback wrote:

While there is extensive evidence in the record concerning the College’s religious identity and its stated mission, adjunct faculty are not expected to advance the College’s religious mission, other than respect and support it. Even the forms that are required to be signed when adjunct faculty are hired only demand that they read the mission statement and will respect the Lasallian culture of the College.

There is no evidence that adjunct faculty are expected to further the mission by serving as religious advisors to students, propagating the Catholic faith, engaging in religious training, or conforming to the tenets of Catholicism in the course of their job duties. Thus, the record fails to establish how the College’s religious identity affects actual job functions.”

The facts? Fernback notede:

  • “While the College posited there was an expectation that adjunct faculty support and respect its Lasallian Catholic mission, it acknowledged that all religious programming and events, even adjunct orientation, are optional.”
  • Department chairs at Manhattan College testified across the board that they do not ask adjunct faculty in any way to “adhere to or propagate any Catholic doctrine as part of their jobs.”
  • Only one job posting—a Sociology opening—specified the Catholic mission. It required “that potential applicants are sensitive” to Manhattan’s Catholic mission and identity.

This is “far short of showing a connection between performing a religious role and the job requirements,” Fernbach concluded.

What about full-time, tenure-track faculty hirings?

That question was answered last March when NLRB Regional Director Ronald Hooks upheld a previous NLRB ruling by the NLRB’s Seattle office that professors—even professors of Theology—aren’t held to a religious standard.

So, the NLRB has changed its target. Even though “Catholic Bishop” will continue to provide the standard, the new test will be to determine whether individual faculty members in the institution serve a religious function. Note: That’s more than the professorial functions of research, teaching, and service that provide the standard at the nation’s non-religious universities and colleges.

For a Catholic university or college, doesn’t that ruling make eminent sense? As it is religious as opposed to non-religious (or secular), is not the that institution’s “value proposition” its distinctive religious identity? Further, by virtue of that religious identity, should not that value proposition evidence itself in all aspects of that institution’s operations, and in particular, in classroom teaching?

These questions raise precisely what the issue of contention is. For the NLRB, it’s not enough to “talk the talk” through speeches, institutional propaganda, and optional activities. An exemption from NLRB oversight will be merited if and only if those religious institutions actually “walk the talk” and, in this instance, in every classroom.

The tragic irony is that many of the nation’s bishops as well as many of administrators of many of Catholic universities and colleges aren’t as exacting as is the NLRB. Imagine that!




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4 Responses to U.S. Catholic higher education: The National Labor Relations Board upholds Catholic identity more than many U.S. bishops and administrators?

Liberty University: Gone liberal?

Sunday, August 9, AD 2015

Universities are founded with the idea of providing the requisite freedom (libertas) and rest (otium) that’s necessary for human beings to pursue ideas and ultimately to grasp truth.

That’s certainly not the case today as most of the nation’s campuses are controlled by ideologues on the political left. Their primary interest seems be imposing their ideas upon students rather than exposing those ideas to full and unfettered inspection in the public forum so that students learn to think for themselves. Ideologues on the political left conveniently seem to forget that telling students what to think is very different from teaching them how to think.

Imposing an ideology of any stripe in an institution of higher education is antithetical to the pursuit of truth, the equivalent of an academic “mortal sin.”


During the past five decades, it’s hardly a secret that the political left has committed this sin at a far greater rate than has the political right, most of whom seem to have headed for the bunkers and are in hiding. The number of the nation’s institutions of higher education controlled by the former attest to the accuracy of this observation.

Furthermore, their prejudice as well as their ire manifest themselves in spades when the names of conservative institutions—like Hillsdale College or Liberty University—are introduced into discussion. Listening to those on the political left castigate such “conservative” institutions, one would hardly think they deserve the moniker “institution of higher education.” How could they be? They’re not “liberal”!

However, imagine one of those conservative institutions of higher education out “liberaling” those so-called liberals.  An Inside Higher Ed article reports that’s exactly what Liberty University—a conservative, evangelical Christian university—has done.

No one on the political left or right would be surprised at Liberty inviting conservatives and evangelicals to speak at its Convocations. Those convocations provide students—who are required to attend—a healthy dose of conservative dogma. Recently, U.S. Senator Ted Cruz (R-TX) kicked off his campaign for the presidency at one such convocation. Retired neurosurgeon and candidate for the Republican presidential nomination, Ben Carson, is scheduled to speak at a convocation this fall.

But, guess who is also scheduled to appear on the stage at Liberty University on September 14? U.S. Senator Bernie Sanders (I-VT), a candidate for the Democratic presidential nomination and avowed socialist.

In his statement announcing that he had accepted the invitation to address the student body, Senator Sanders wrote:

Liberty University was kind enough to invite me to address a convocation and I decided to accept. It goes without saying that my views on many issues – women’s rights, gay rights, education – are very different from the opinions of some in the Liberty University community. I think it is important, however, to see if we can reach consensus regarding the grotesque level of income and wealth inequality in our country, about the collapse of the middle class, about the high level of childhood poverty, about climate change and other issues. It is very easy for a candidate to speak to people who hold the same views. It’s harder but important to reach out to others who look at the world differently. I look forward to meeting with the students and faculty of Liberty University.

Inviting Bernie Sanders speak at a Liberty University is the equivalent of inviting U.S. Supreme Court Associate Justice Clarence Thomas or U.S. Senator Ted Cruz address students at an Ivy League or University of California System institution. That would be authentically liberal.

The truth be told, those on the political left are more conserative than they’re willing to admit: They aren’t much interested in listening carefully to the other side in a debate. Instead, they steadfastly refuse to issue invitations to those with whom they disagree and, should academic administators make the mistake of doing so, are forced to “disinvite” those with whom the political left disagrees. Just ask Condolezza Rice and Dr. Ben Carson.

In this instance, who’d have thunk Liberty University is more liberal than most liberal institutions of higher education in the United States?


Let the discussion begin…




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5 Responses to Liberty University: Gone liberal?

  • The truth be told, those on the political left are more conserative than they’re willing to admit: They aren’t much interested in listening carefully to the other side in a debate. Instead, they steadfastly refuse to issue invitations to those with whom they disagree and, should academic administators make the mistake of doing so, are forced to “disinvite” those with whom the political left disagrees. Just ask Condolezza Rice and Dr. Ben Carson.

    A minor quibble: That’s not conservtive, that’s reactionary.

  • Liberalism is a political philosophy raised to the level of a religion with the material world as it’s object of worship. Conservatism is a political philosophy, only. Liberalism being a religion is based on faith with a “holy writ” that has been declared unchallengeable and impervious to rational argument. Anyone not holding it’s “sacred doctrine” is declared unclean, a heretic and a hater of person-kind. At bottom liberals are unable to adapt to reality and must alter reality to suit their theories. Basically liberals are full of fear due to their lack of faith in God. Let us pray for these benighted folks that someday they will see the light.

  • “…Inequity in wealth…”
    There it is again, from Rome, from the White House, from a socialist. How they bemoan and castigate adequate wealth as poverty if anyone dare have more.
    it is conceivable with this as moral thinking that Joseph of Aramathia would not have been allowed to own the expensive tomb that he gave to lay Christ’s dead body in, as it was evidence of that “unfair income gap.”

    I could care who has more than I. It is but their burden.

  • I predict that the audience will be very gracious and welcoming toward Sen Sanders. I think they will listen respectully to him. I doubt there will even be weeks of student and faculty protests leading up to his engagement. And I think listening to him will help strengthen their critical thinking skills.

  • With all due respect, I thought the past participle of “to think” was “thought”, not thunk!
    Otherwise, it was an interesting and insightful article.

    God bless!

From the folks at Planned Parenthood sells intact fetal body parts…

Tuesday, July 14, AD 2015


LOS ANGELES, July 14, 2015 (LifeSiteNews) – An undercover video released this morning shows a national leader of Planned Parenthood admitting that the abortion provider uses the illegal and highly controversial partial birth abortion procedure to sell intact fetal body parts.

The average asking price for fetal body parts? Between $30 and $100 per specimen.

Dr. Deborah Nucatola has been senior director of medical services at Planned Parenthood since February 2009, where she oversees medical practices at all Planned Parenthood affiliates nationwide. She has been employed by Planned Parenthood for more than a decade. She also performs abortions up to 24 weeks in Los Angeles.

In the video, she met with investigators posing as buyers from a human biologics company on July 25, 2014.

While casually sipping wine and eating salad, Dr. Nucatola revealed that she charges $30 to $100 per specimen, and that fetal livers are especially in demand – although “a lot of people want intact hearts these days,” and she has had requests for lungs and “lower extremities.”

Planned Parenthood affiliates “absolutely” want to offer such organs, she said.

Nucatola admitted that Planned Parenthood’s abortionists take great care not to appear to be profiteering off fetal body parts. She said, “They just want to do it in a way that is not perceived as, ‘The clinic is selling tissue. This clinic is making money off of this.’”

The issue is not merely PR – there is also the little matter of federal law. Trafficking in human body parts is a federal felony punishable by up to 10 years in prison and a fine of $500,000.

The method of abortion she describes, on video, also appears to violate federal law.

Dr. Nucatola said she has “a huddle at the beginning of the day” to determine what fetal body parts consumers are requesting, and which patients that day will have babies from which they will be able to harvest them. Then Planned Parenthood abortionists tailor the procedure to assure they do not destroy the organs, maximizing profitability.

“For that reason, most providers will do this case under ultrasound guidance, so they’ll know where they’re putting their forceps,” she said.

She revealed that, as abortionists are dismembering the child, they decide, “I’m not gonna crush that part. I’m gonna basically crush below, I’m gonna crush above, and I’m gonna see if I can get it all intact.”

In order to procure intact organs, she seemed to describe herself and others performing the illegal partial birth abortion method.

“Some people,” she said, taking another sip of wine, “will actually try to change the presentation so that it’s not vertex [head first],”she continues. “So, if you do it starting from the breech presentation [feet first]…often, the last step, you can evacuate an intact calvarium [the head] at the end.”

President George W. Bush signed a law outlawing partial birth abortion in 2003. It, too, is a federal felony punishable by two years in prison and a fine of $250,000.

But, Dr. Nucatola told the undercover investigators, there are ways around the law.

“The federal abortion ban is a law, and laws are up to interpretation,” she said. “So, if I say on day one that I don’t intend to do this, what ultimately happens doesn’t matter.”

“At the national office, we have a Litigation and Law Department which just really doesn’t want us to be the middle people for this issue right now,” she says. “But I will tell you that behind closed doors these conversations are happening with the affiliates.” (You can read a full transcript of the conversation here.)

In a separate video, the investigators meet with Planned Parenthood CEO Cecile Richards, saying that Dr. Nucatola has been incredibly helpful in their efforts to procure unborn babies’ body parts.

“Oh good,” Richards replies. “Great. She’s amazing.”

In addition to overseeing all medical practices at the abortion giant, Dr. Nucatola has frequently been a media spokeswoman promoting the organization’s political concerns.

The video was the fruit of a nearly three-year-long undercover investigation by theCenter for Medical Progress.

“Planned Parenthood’s criminal conspiracy to make money off of aborted baby parts reaches to the very highest levels of their organization,” said Project Lead David Daleiden. “Elected officials must listen to the public outcry for Planned Parenthood to be held accountable to the law and for our tax dollars to stop underwriting this barbaric abortion business.”

National pro-life leaders immediately called for a Congressional investigation. “This video provides a shocking reality check about the grisly, inhumane business model of Planned Parenthood,” said Dr. Charmaine Yoest, president and CEO of Americans United for Life (AUL). “Under Cecile Richards’ leadership, breast screenings are down, abortions are up and profits are up, as even the bodies of the unborn become something else for her to sell. We call for an immediate Congressional investigation into these alleged atrocities. And just as important, the time is now to defund Planned Parenthood. The American taxpayer should not be in business with such callous profiteers.”

Organizers are asking that this information be shared on Twitter with the hashtag #PPSellsBabyParts. They also request that everyone contact Congress and demand a full investigation.

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10 Responses to From the folks at Planned Parenthood sells intact fetal body parts…

  • It is worth noting that it is countries in the Civil Law tradition that have most strongly opposed the commercialisation of the human body, whether in the sale of organs, tissue or gametes.

    In France, Art 1128 of the Code Civil lays down the general principle, taken from Roman Law, “Only things in commerce can be the subject of an agreement”

    No one can own human body parts. This is excluded by the general terms of Art. 16-1 “The human body, its elements and its products may not form the subject of a patrimonial right.” This, too, is Roman – “Dominus membrorum suorum nemo videtur”: no-one is to be regarded as the owner of his own limbs, says Ulpian in D.9.2.13. pr.

    Art. 16-5 reinforces Art 1128, by providing that “Agreements that have the effect of bestowing a patrimonial value to the human body, its elements or products are void”

    In 19th century Scotland, the Resurrection Men, grave robbers that supplied cadavers to medical schools, were prosecuted for violation of sepulchre. The taking of a body was not theft, although taking the grave-clothes or a ring was; these were the property or in the lawful possession of the heirs, executors or representatives.

  • Cue the Catholic bloggers who will decry the “lies” that were told to obtain this information.

  • This casual lunch time conversation discussing butcher shop operations and best practices within the workplace is quite interesting. And the economics of their marketing efforts was very enlightening. Revealing how important it is for the butcher to use the proper tools with precision accuracy in order to preserve the most valuable specimens for their customers was also something which shows the concern they have for the quality of their product.

    SIMPLY SICKENING! Are these actually human beings talking or mechanical lab robots?

  • This sounds like a horror movie. I’m beyond repulsed.

  • There is no difference between the horrors of ISIS and Planned Parenthood.

  • “It is worth noting that it is countries in the Civil Law tradition that have most strongly opposed the commercialisation of the human body, whether in the sale of organs, tissue or gametes. …”

    Civil, civilized.
    Here is a huge way for the American Civil Liberties Union to redeem itself! Vengeful activity too horrific to defend.

    Oh – both organizations, PP and ACLU, are protected functionaries of the Democrat National Party agenda.

    Millions of infants each have many ‘parts’ which reap profits from and for ghoulish activity.
    Fish are having -oid deformities due to the contraceptives and hormones washing into their habitat through human waste. (Laudato Si point?)

    I went to a funeral for a dear victim of breast cancer this morning – she had been told two years ago that she survived cleanly. Another lump, some treatments, tried ‘anything’, now two daughters and husband are left to mourn. The ubiquitous pink ribbon marathons bring these people together – a coup for sentimentalists and PP.
    Only in January are the aborted remembered by people togerther being ignored by PP, ACLU, and lawmakers.
    I wonder about stem cells, transgendering, and whether any of this is related.

  • Pingback: WEDNESDAY EDITION – Big Pulpit
  • “While casually sipping wine and eating salad, Dr. Nucatola revealed that she charges $30 to $100 per specimen, and that fetal livers are especially in demand – although “a lot of people want intact hearts these days,” and she has had requests for lungs and “lower extremities.”

    From the transcript of the Nuremberg Trials:

    “The prosecutor: The experiments of the Anatomical Institute in the production the soap from the corpses and tanning of human skin for industrial purposes were conducted on a wide scale. I submit a document[…] to the tribunal, which consists of the testimony of Sigmund Mazur, one of the direct participants of the production of soap from the human fat, he was helper-laboratory assistant at the Danzig Anatomical institute.[…]

    The question: Please tell us how soap was produced from the human fat at the Danzig Anatomical institute?

    The answer: In summer of 1943 in the yard of the Anatomical institute a two-storey stone building containing three chambers was built. This building was designed for the purpose of utilizing corpses and cooking the bones, as the professor Spanner officially declared. The laboratory was defined as the institution of taking down skeletons, burning meat and superfluous bones, but in the winter 1943-1944 he the year of the prof Spanner instructed us to collect the human fat which was not to be thrown away any more. This order was given to Reichert and Borkmann.

    Prof Spanner gave me the recipe for the production of soap from the human fat in February 1944. According to this recipe 5 kg (11 lb) of the human fat appertained to be mixed with 10 the litres (2.2 imp gal; 2.6 US gal) of water and 500 to 1000 grams of the caustic soda. This mixture was cooked for two up to three hours, then it was allowed to cool. Then the soap rose to the surface, while water and settlings were under it. To this mixture a pinch of salt and soda was added and it was cooked again for two up to three hours. After cooling the soap was poured into a mould.”

  • I will wait for the outrage from the USCCB at a press conference it calls on this. I will wait for Cardinal Dolan to use the political connections he has so assiduously cultivated to get something done about this. I will wait for Pope Francis to speak up now that he is turning his attention to the United States and his upcoming visit. I will wait, and wait. Yeah, that’s what I thought. A modern day holocaust. Silence.

  • And PP have been decrying all along, that what they are aborting is a “blob.” A “blob” does not have organs. Babies have organs. Babies with organs are humans. They are therefore aborting humans.

    And by the way, did the murdered child sign a consent form saying they wanted their organs donated? No! Because they wouldn’t have consented to being murdered in the first place.

    This woman and the entire organisation are pure evil.

    Just sick.

State Senator Rick Bertrand (R-IA): A genuine Catholic pol…

Monday, July 13, AD 2015


Over at the Souix City Journal, State Senator Rick Bertrand (R-IA) has written an impassioned op-ed explaining why Catholics, especially those who are pro-life, need to stop supporting pro-death politicians.

Given the demographic data, Bertrand writes:

Abortion in this country will only be abolished through the legislative process, and that begins by Catholics electing representatives, an organization, that will aggressively pursue a pro-life agenda. Only then will a domino of judicial rulings pave the way back to the U.S. Supreme Court where this horrific tragedy started.

This is the reality. Can we Catholics handle the truth?


State Senator Rick Bertrand, wife Tammy, and daughter, Addison

More to the point, Bertrand offers an opinion about what the data suggest for the nation’s Catholic bishops, priests, and deacons:

Any priest or member of our clergy who is voting with the Democratic Party is not leading by example, and simply living and preaching a lie. “Not domineering over those in your charge, but being examples to the flock.” (1 Peter 5:3)

“How do we Catholics end abortion?”, Bertrand asks. “By looking in the mirror.”

Kudos to State Senator Rick Bertrand for taking his faith into the public square and courageously stating what it requires of Catholics. Read his story here.




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5 Responses to State Senator Rick Bertrand (R-IA): A genuine Catholic pol…

  • Good story and good reminder of what is right.

  • God Bless him. It has long been evident that a majority of the hierarchy of the Catholic church is not pro-life. If the hierarchy was entirely pro-life, there would be no “Catholic” pro-abort politicians. I struggled with this realization for a very long time. In the end, you just have to accept Christ’s own words. By their fruit you will know them.

  • The same day that newspaper published Bertrand’s wonderful opinion article, they also ran a soft news article (bigger) about three democrat Catholic sisters from Holstein Iowa – (macGuires) who over the years have been influential in Iowa politics. The article was like an ad for the democrat party, social justice, how they live poor people, etc. how the democrat party expresses the macGuires deeply held Catholic faith . The article seemed to have been written and placed in the paper that day as a counter-weight to Rick Bertrand’s .


    the placement and date of this article demonstrates political activism on the part of the author who is also the head of political coverage for the Journal .

  • It is a mortal sin for a Catholic with a well-formed conscience to vote for any Democrat. See the extensive development of this conclusion in the docoument VIRTUOUS CITIZENSHIP 2014 at the site or http://www.pecadovotardemocrata. Until the prolife folks educate the Hispanic population that Democrat RETA policy purposefully eliminates Hisapnaics – in the US over 12,000,000 since Roe – Hispanics will continue to vote for the rulers who promise them some of other people’s money. RETA = racial eugenic targeted abortion. Guy McClung, San Antonio, Texas, once USA, now USSA

Laudato si: Its pessimistic tone sounds like Environmental Defense Fund propaganda…

Sunday, July 12, AD 2015


Many have rightly lauded Pope Francis’ encyclical concerning the environment, Laudato si. However, many of those doing so view the encyclical as a crucial document, not for its defense of life, family, and the impoverished but for its utility in furthering their environmentalist agenda.

For example, repeatedly mentioning the “environmental crisis””and stating “the symptoms of sickness evident in the soil, in the water, in the air, and in all forms of life” (¶ 2), Pope Francis provides environmentalists a motherlode of propaganda soundbites as well as rhetorical ammunition to make an appeal to papal authority in support of their agenda. Unfortunately, although this appeal represents the logical fallacy of “appeal to authority,” that won’t matter much.


The President of the Population Research Institute and the author of Population Control: Real Costs and Illusory Benefits, Steven Mosher, has carefully considered Laudato si and asks over at the New York Post: “Do the Pope and I live on the same planet?”

Answering his question, Mosher argues that the encyclical’s pessimistic tone neglects the much of the progress that’s already been achieved in caring for both the environment and the poor. He writes:

Many of its strong claims about the dire state of the world don’t take into account positive change reported even in UN documents, which themselves tend to magnify environmental and other global problems as a fundraising ploy.

In this regard, Mosher cites this discrepancy concerning the issues of: water (¶ 27-31); loss of biodiversity (¶ 32-42); decline in the quality of human life and the breakdown of society (¶ 43-47); and, global inequality (¶ 48-52). In sum:

…a dismal tone of environmental “apocalypse now” pervades the entire document, as when it breathlessly proclaims that: “Doomsday predictions can no longer be met with irony or distain. We may well be leaving to coming generations debris, desolation and filth….our contemporary lifestyle [is] unsustainable …” (¶ 161).


Mosher correctly argues that problem isn’t Pope Francis but the so-called  environmental “experts” who were hand-selected by the head of the Pontifical Academy of Sciences, Archbishop Marcelo Sanchez Sorondo. One of those experts, Hans Joachim Schellnhuber, who assisted in drafting the encyclical, happens to be a member of the Club of Rome, a global think tank. In 1972, the group issued the now-discredited “The Limits to Growth” study which famously predicted the world would run out of “nonrenewable resources” in the 1980s and 1990s, and that environmental, economic, and societal collapse would follow.

“In selecting Schellnhuber,” Mosher asserts, “[Archbishop Sanchez Sorondo] might as well have turned the manuscript over to a fundraising copywriter for the Environmental Defense Fund.”

The truth concerning the scriptural injunction to cultivate, rule, and care for the environment is ill-served when ideology—in this case, the ideology of those who worship at the altar of environmentalism—and its propaganda are selected to provide the substantive foundation for the argument.

Where Laudato si promotes that truth, it’s a fine document for serious reflection and action. Where Laudato si veers from that truth, the encyclical can easily be hijacked by environmentalists and their  propagandists.




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4 Responses to Laudato si: Its pessimistic tone sounds like Environmental Defense Fund propaganda…

  • Laudato Si… a dead letter to me. The anti-fracking pontiff is set to visit Philadelphia, a city and school district dying to get its hands on fracking extraction taxes.

    He can stay in Havana for all I care.

  • “Where Laudato si promotes that truth, it’s a fine document for serious reflection and action.”

    I disagree with some urgency. As if any reading could reasonably conclude otherwise, we see the encyclical being lived out in recent days both through Vatican central efforts to promote it and by way of the Pope’s pronouncements in Latin America. You cannot associate what is known as Catholic teaching with the horrors of socialism and Marxism and pretend to find Truth in the new catholic world order being advanced by Francis. Truth is clearly being misused as mere window dressing for advancing horrifying ideologies. The Pope has bestowed the goodwill of the Church, which includes its two thousand years of teaching and protecting the Faith on a petty Bolivian Che guevara wannabe indulging in the acceptance of a disgraceful if not sacriligeous symbol and the cutesy coca stunt (made legal by Evo so as to export this poison) so as to promote the pope’s own new and better form of Marxist ideology. The purpose and intent of that encyclical was not promoting Truth and we all need to come to terms with what is going on.

  • When I saw a headline “Is it the Unabomber or Pope Frances?” it finally occurred to me what was so familiar about the encyclical! Seriously. I had read UB’s manifesto way back when, and as I read PF’s LS something kept tugging at me that it was vaguely familiar.
    Glad that’s cleared up.

Being ‘Welcoming and Opening’ to Those Outside of the Faith

Wednesday, July 1, AD 2015

When it comes to the Anglican Communion, it’s not only possible to believe anything, it’s also possible to develop a high-church liturgy for everything.

Consider the text of an April 2015 motion proposed by the Diocese of Blackburn for review during the upcoming July 2015 General Synod of the Church of England. The text marks an individual’s gender transition, stating:

…to move on behalf of the Blackburn Diocesan Synod:

“That this Synod, recognising the need for transgender people to be welcomed and affirmed in their parish church, call on the House of Bishops to consider whether some nationally commended liturgical materials might be prepared to mark a person’s gender transition.


The Rev. Megan Rohrer, an openly transgendered Lutheran pastor in San Francisco who is overseen by the local Lutheran and Episcopalian bishops

Studying the motion, one particularly astute commentor authored a collect for a welcoming/affirming ceremony. The commentor asks: “What will the collect look like?”

Here’s the text:

“Partially mighty God, who makes mistakes by placing female souls with male bodies and male souls with female bodies; we thank you for the gift of surgical techniques which can improve upon your justice. As we place our trust in the ‘social construct of gender fluidity’ rather than the waters of baptism, we claim the goodness of a new name for our transgender (brother/sister) and repent of our cisgender pride. Hail Cobra!”

The essence of humor is a kernel of truth that’s stretched beyond credulity.

This couldn’t possibly be what Pope Francis had in mind when he said “the Roman Catholic Church must be opening and welcoming to those outside of the faith,” is it?





To read the motion authored by the Diocese of Blackburn, click on the following link:

To read Pope Francis’ remarks about the Church being open and welcoming, click on the following link:

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8 Responses to Being ‘Welcoming and Opening’ to Those Outside of the Faith

  • Despite many I have with things Pope Francis has said, he has denounced “gender theory” pretty strongly.

    And that proposed opening prayer nails it.

  • MikeS, PF, having admitted Bp. Sorondo-Sanchez, Hans Schellnhuber, and now (outrage of outrage) Naomi Klein to the Pont. Academy of the Social Sciences, is not worthy of any trust at all. I don’t believe or trust anything this Pope says.

    And dont forget his personal appointment of Timothy Radcliffe, an utterly reprobate cleric, to a position with the Pont. Academy of Peace and Justice.
    The Pontifical Academies are a joke. On all of us.

  • Megan Roher – is that a he or a she or an it? Regardless, this person is a shameless blasphemous pervert.

  • Excuse me but God does not make mistakes!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! It’s about time the catholic church grew a backbone or your going to lose all the faithful followers. (me being one of them)

    I WOULD rather walk away from the church and just do all my praying at home then to mock god by going along with all this craziness . Also God made Eve for Adam not a another man and also the bible says marriage is between a man and a women!!!!!!!

  • The soul is the form of the body until some scientists get to work on it, body and soul. Caitlin Jenner did not do that to himself. He had plenty of help, a whole legion of demons.

  • Mordant comment, Doris Bates, but how can one not understand your experience. You and persons who think like you (and the rest of us to whatever degree) are worth ignoring, since we are only troublesome and “contrarian”.

    For “visionaries” like Pope Francis and his “cuate”, Bp. Sorondo-Sanchez, dissenting opinions and their espousers are to be ignored generally, while occasionally throwing them a palatable “bone” (such as n 120, in Laudato Si’, bothering to mention abortion). Visionaries never have to prove their facts, their research analysis, their balance sheets. They are right—and you (we) are not. Tidy.

    Should that fail, they will next screw themselves up to their full intellectual-dwarf height and browbeat you (us), declaiming their spiritual authority and your obligation to abject submission—a familiar redoubt during the abuse crisis.

    Recently, this past week while on convention-style vacation, I was stunned how this topic came up at the convention I attended—the crisis in the Catholic Church, and how many are considering the Doris-Bates option. It was a secular-type convention, and I did not prompt or initiate the responses. It is clear it is on everyone’s mind, and since we at the convention shared a common professional background, people felt safe to, cautiously, voice their mind. People are tired as hell of having Mass, even Novus Ordo Mass, hijacked to the Rio+20 agenda.

    So, I think a lot more people are doing as you are doing, staying home, reading the Missal for the day and reciting the Rosary for an hour. And bonus: NoDiocesan Appeal, No Peter’s Pence collection!

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Pursuing the parochial truth: Dominican University (River Forest, IL)…

Saturday, June 20, AD 2015


“Inspired minds. Amazing possibilities.”

That’s the tagline for the Dominican University (River Forest, Illinois) website for this Dominican institution of higher education which advertises its mission using the following descriptor:

As a Sinsinawa Dominican-sponsored institution, Dominican University prepares students to pursue truth, to give compassionate service and to participate in the creation of a more just and humane world.

Notice the word “Catholic” by its absence in that descriptor.




Just what might that mission mean in actual practice?

Consider the “New Faces, New Voices, New Ways of Being Church” conference scheduled for October 24. The conference’s subtitle is noteworthy: “An exploration of the American Catholic Church going forward.”


The description of the conference is even more noteworthy:

[The National Catholic Reporters’ (NCR)] founders were journalists whose first priorities were holding authorities accountable and being a platform for a free, open discussion of ideas. Solidly founded in an American culture, NCR has been a chronicler of society and the Catholic Church for 50 years. Through this uniquely American and Catholic lens, the conference will explore what might be on the horizon for the American Catholic church.

Putting some flesh on those bones, conference speakers include:

  • Maria Pilar Aquino: A Catholic feminist theologian who teaches liberation theology, is pro-abortion, and supports the ordination of women. “We feminist Catholic theologians profoundly disagree with the intractable position of official Roman Catholicism regarding reproductive rights and women’s human rights,” Aquino has said. Of the pontificate of St. John Paul II, Aquino noted that it exhibited “strong signs of theological intolerance and of rigidity in the exercise of power….[The] mode of Church promoted by John Paul II was widely characterized by authoritarianism, centralism, conservatism, imperialism, and by monoculturalism, and is consistent with the patterns of dominant male-centered Western European Christianity.” In her talk, Aquino will explore the contribution of the deep voices from the Global South to those processes.
  • Reverend Bryan Massingale, STD: A priest of the Archdiocese of Milwaukee and professor at Marquette University, Father Massingale spoke at an event on Capitol Hill on behalf of Equally Blessed, a homosexual activist coalition which counts among its number Call To Action, DignityUSA, Fortunate Families, and New Ways Ministry. At the event, Massingale advocated “full equality” for homosexuals. Afterwards, Massingale was asked whether he agreed with the teaching found in the Catechism of the Catholic Church that “homosexual acts are contrary to the natural law” and “[under] no circumstances can they be approved,” Massingale evaded the question. In his talk, Father Massingale will explore how this moment challenges the Catholic faith community to face the “unresolved racism” in its own life, as well as the opportunities for more engaged social reflection and justice ministry.
  • Jamie Manson: A National Catholic Reporter columnist, Manson covers the so-called “homosexual marriage” and and feminist ideology beat. A critic of Pope Francis for upholding the complementarity of the two genders, Manson accuses the Pope of denegrating both homosexuals and women. Defending legal recognition of so-called “homosexual marriage,” Manson has argued: “How sad that church leaders refuse to see that same-sex couples have as much potential to be visible signs of God’s ‘masterwork’ as heterosexual relationships.” She also calls Church leaders to “have the courage and humility to see that God can be as fully present in the relationships of same-sex couples as God can be in opposite-sex couples and that God can be as sacramentally present through the body of a woman priest as God can be sacramentally present in the body of a male priest.” In her presentation, Manson will explore some of the new models of church that have been emerging among marginalized faith communities and consider what forms of church may be meaningful and relevant to new generations of Catholics.
  • Sister Joan Chittister, OSB: The “counter Mother Angelica” founder of Benetvision–an organization that promotes “contemporary spirituality” with the aim of awakening the “Divine Feminine” within each woman–Sr. Chittister is arguably most noted for her dissent against Church teachings concerning abortion (claiming it denies women a basic “freedom”) and female ordination as well as her critique of the Council of Trent, saying that it “plunged Catholicism into the Dark Ages.” Sr. Chittister will consider a way forward that is rooted in the prophetic message of the gospel which demands that we seek a new way of being church.

While the Dominican University website advertises that “All are welcome,” all of the invited speakers align themselves squarely with the NCR’s radical stance toward the Roman Catholic Church and whose shared desire is to shape the Church in their “American Catholic” image, as that’s defined by the contents of their lectures.

While those who are convening the event may “welcome” others to listen, they certainly aren’t welcome to speak. How open and inclusive of a diversity of thought! Tres catholique!

This conference isn’t an “academic” conference and, given topic’s parochial treatment, certainly won’t prepare any Dominican University students in attendance to pursue the truth.

“Inspired minds. Amazing possibilities.” That’s what it means to be Dominican University (with no mention of the word Catholic). And, all for only $40 per ticket (or $20 for students).

St. Thomas Aquinas must be scratching his head in disbelief.




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15 Responses to Pursuing the parochial truth: Dominican University (River Forest, IL)…

  • Two words come to mind: “socialist tool.” Or, is it “socialist fool?”

  • I really have to wonder why these speakers want to retain the label “Catholic”‘? What does it mean to them? Do they profess to speak for the church? From whom do they receive their authority? This line up of speakers at a “Catholic” institution breaks my heart!

  • . This is why Popes should be administrators in our day and age instead of writers like the last several. These people flourish because Popes for the last 35 years have been principally writers and St. JPII as additionally …traveler speaker. We actually need the opposite: Popes who stop writing, stop talking and fire people for their own good. That’s an all year, 365 day a year job. It has not been done and won’t be because the Cardinals elect as Popes…writers to impress the world press, impress European lapsed Catholics and all media image outlets. Here’s a prophecy. Nothing will change and you can write this same essay four decades from now if no administrative Pope ( no writing) is not elected in your lifetime. All these type of problems are Pope problems at root. They discipline someone ( Curran, Hans Kung) at a rate of 1% of what should be happening….because they’re busy writing. These people metastisized while e.g. Benedict was writing the series on the Fathers…..which was read by 1% of Catholics…maybe. All long lived heresy problems are Pope administrative negligence problems. For their own good, pro abortion thinkers need excommunication which is now possible more so with section 62 of Evangelium Vitae which gives the condemnation the clearly manifest status required by canon 749/c(3).

  • Ah, the Sinsinawa Dominicans. That is the congregation of sisters that includes Sr.
    Donna Quinn, who in 2009 was revealed to have worked for at least six years as an
    escort at a Chicago-area abortion clinic. Her fellow sisters knew of her moonlighting
    and supported it. When the scandal broke, Sr. Donna was given a stern talking-to,
    but remains a Sinsinawa Dominican sister in good standing to this day.
    In other news, the demolition of the Franciscan Friars of the Immaculate continues…

  • These folks are “Pope problems”. Just as Ronald Reagan famously said, “personnel is policy.” However, I don’t give Pope Francis a pass because he writes and travels too much. He’s found plenty of time to appoint people to high positions with the same heretical views as these nuns. We aren’t talking about a few outliers. This truly is a “Pope problem”.

  • And the new Archbishop of Chicago will be there to approve all the heresy…

  • I’m sorry, however, I can’t see how anyone teaching this type of unBiblical doctrine are “Christians.” why have these people not been dealt with at the local parish level–long ago?

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  • It makes me sad and angry to read that so many people and schools call themselves Catholic that disagree with Catholic teaching. These people and schools are really protestant.

  • Bill: These schools are anti-Catholic. And since being Catholic is being blessed, than I guess being anti-Catholic is being damned.

  • I read somewhere else that Bishop Cupich was going to be in attendance at this scandalous event also, and offering Mass for everyone. Lovely. He’ll apparently fit right in.

  • If you are a closet-Thomist, River Forest in the 50’s up, until some event in the mid-60’s, had a marvelous Catholic press that turned out book after book on Thomistic studies (as well as lives of the saints, esp. the Dominican saints) at accessible prices, all in great binding meant to last and excllent print-type. Those editions that escaped the Bonfires of the Insanities of the 60′ are still floating around e-bay and dusty used book stores even today.

    Now, only about 50 years later…oxymoronically-named Maria Aquino, Massengale, Manson(don’t call me Charles!), and Chitty-chitty-bang-bang. From gold to clay in a few decades.

  • T. Shaw: “socialist fool?”

    perhaps best said by the chief devil:

    “Useful idiots.” — “V.I. Lenin”

  • @Steve Phoenix: So true. My Mom went there back when it was still called Rosary College in the early 50’s. Many years later, as a new Catholic and quite naive, I was thrilled to get a job there. Being a new Catholic, I assumed that Dominican University would be a wonderful, faith-filled employer. Boy was I in for a jolt; a much-needed dose of current Catholic reality. I lasted there only about 2 years and when I finally took my leave, wrote a respectful, truthful but scathing letter to the President and a few others of my observations of their supposed “Catholic identity” and how utterly depressing their university is for anyone who actually takes their Faith seriously. Obviously nothing has changed since then; probably gotten worse, if possible. The Sinsinawa “nuns” are notorious.

  • I am an Dominican (Rosary College) alum. I will write to express my disapproval.

Doublespeaque vs. truth in advertising: The NLRB tightens the noose…

Thursday, June 4, AD 2015


The National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) is tightening the noose as it ups the ante in recognizing the rights of adjunct faculty in private, religious colleges and universities to unionize. This decision could also be a first step in the long-term efforts of the National Education Association (NEA) and Service Employees International Union (SEIU) to achieve a much larger agenda: To unionize all full-time faculty teaching in religious institutions of higher education.

At issue is the NLRB’s contention that if these institutions are to remain nonunionized, they must provide evidence that individual faculty members in their teaching role are directly responsible for furthering the religious mission of these institutions, similar to how members of religious congregations did in the past.

The NLRB’s approach is especially disconcerting for academic administrators at the nation’s Catholic institutions of higher education because, in contrast to the past, the overwhelming number of faculty members in these institutions today are laypersons, some of whom are not Catholic and most of whom do not view themselves as contracted to further the religious mission of the institutions at which they teach.

Compounding the problem, academic administrators generally don’t require faculty members to demonstrate that they further their institutional missions. Like faculty, academic administrators believe that such a requirement is antithetical to academic freedom as well as to the espoused goal of being institutions that are characterized by inclusivity among faculty and, in this sense, diversity of thought. In short, that faculty be “catholic” and avoid what many administrators and faculty believe is the narrow parochialism of being “Catholic.”


That said, the NLRB is now treating these institutions in the same way it would treat public and secular universities and colleges.

In 2015, the NLRB remanded three cases concerning Catholic institutions of higher education to NLRB Regional Directors, delegating to them the authority to determine whether individual faculty members at those institutions actually perform religious functions. The NRLB’s litmus test for determining whether an institution has a “substantial religious character” to claim a religious exemption from the NLRB’s jurisdiction states:

…faculty members are required to integrate the institution’s religious tenets into coursework, serve as religious advisors to students, propagate those tenets, engage in religious training, or conform to the tenets in a manner specifically linked to their job duties.

Any 1 of the above 4 requirements is sufficient to exempt a Catholic institution of higher education from the NLRB’s jurisdiction. But, in several cases during recent years, the NLRB has found no substantial evidence to suggest this is the case.

For example, in its supplemental decision in the Seattle University case, the NLRB found:

There is no evidence in the record that faculty members are required to serve as religious advisors to students, propagate the tenets of the Society of Jesus, engage in religious training, or conform to the tenets of Catholicism in the course of their job duties. In short, a reasonable candidate for a contingent faculty position at Seattle University would not conclude that performance of their faculty responsibilities would require furtherance of a religious mission.

Just the other day, the Region 13 National Labor Relations Board decided that that adjuncts at Saint Xavier University (Chicago) (SXU) may count their union election votes. That effort was put on hold 4 years ago when SXU contested the NEA’s union drive, arguing that its Catholic identity put SXU beyond the NLRB’s jurisdiction.

However, when the NLRB remanded several similar adjunct union cases to its regional offices for further consideration in light of the Pacific Lutheran University decision, the new guidelines for evaluating similar cases were then used to re-evaluate the SXU case. SXU has 2 weeks to appeal is reviewing its options.

Then, just yesterday, non-tenure-track faculty at Siena College voted 102 to 32 to form a collective bargaining unit affiliated with SEIU.

In statement to the Times-Union, academic administrators said that as a Franciscan and Catholic institution, “we recognize and respect the dignity of work, the right of workers to organize and the need for all workers to make informed decisions.” The administrators are committed to “productive dialogue” with the bargaining unit.

According to Inside Higher Ed, a visiting assistant professor of history at Siena, Mara Drogan, said that she hoped the union would help set new standards for faculty pay, benefits, and working conditions across the Albany region and beyond.

While the rhetoric of being a “catholic” institution in whatever tradition may work with trustees, administrators, faculty, alumni/ae, prospective parents of students, and students, the handwriting is on the wall and is crystal clear. The NLRB doesn’t believe for a moment that the institutions in the cases that have been brought before it have demonstrated that they are sufficiently Catholic. Lawyers don’t care much for doublespeaque. For them, it’s all about “truth in advertising” or today’s buzzword “transparency.”

Cry “catholic” all they want, the NLRB isn’t buying the argument. It won’t be very long before the NEA and SEIU renew their efforts to unionize the full-time faculty teaching at the nation’s Catholic universities and colleges. Why? They aren’t “sufficiently” Catholic.

Why is the NLRB calling out these institutions and the nation’s bishops aren’t?




To read the NLRB’s Pacific Lutheran decision, click on the following link:

To read the NLRB’s supplemental decision in the Seattle University case, click on the following link:,d.cGU

To read the Inside Higher Ed article, click on the following link:

To read the Times Union article, click on the following link:

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7 Responses to Doublespeaque vs. truth in advertising: The NLRB tightens the noose…

  • Ha! Forty-eight years after the Land O’Lakes Statement kissing off the Catholic Church’s Magisterium the devil has turned on his own. How will the universities react? By becoming more Catholic? Will Ex Corde Ecclesiae finally be enforced? Shall I hold my breath?

  • As a long ago former teacher and NEA member (until I awoke) The NEA itself, is the epitome of absurd and self-destructive political ideology. They aggressively support abortion and the party the loathes the intact family as well as Christian family values.
    Abortion? What other union, but teachers, would be ignorant enough to help kill off their future clientele–hence livelihood?

  • The SEIU and psuedo catholic colleges – they deserve each other.

  • I have no love for the NLRB or the SEIU, but universities, secular and otherwise, have brought this upon themselves. By outsourcing much of their teaching to adjunct faculty that are paid poverty wages they opened the door to organized labor. I would love to see this situation go down another way, but I don’t see the Catholic colleges having much of a leg to stand on. How Catholic is it to suddenly pretend that this faculty has a religious mission to avoid paying them decent wages?

  • If folks want to believe that church teachings start and stop in theology (and they barely make it there!) class … and that discussing teachings in light of the church can be effectively maintained in other areas regardless of ones position … then please re-enter planet Earth.

  • Q. The Motley Monk wonders, “Why is the NLRB calling out these institutions and the nation’s bishops aren’t?”

    A. Recall the Sunday Gospel reading on the Fourth Sunday of Easter (April 26), “A hired man, who is not a shepherd and whose sheep are not his own, sees a wolf coming and leaves the sheep and runs away, and the wolf catches and scatters them. This is because he works for pay and has no concern for the sheep.” (John 10:12-13)
    Question Authority (of the earthly kind).

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Evangelizing young people: The power of liturgical signs and symbols…

Wednesday, May 27, AD 2015


Over at Fr. Z’s blog, there’s a great photo album posted by the Canons Regular of St. John Cantius Parish (Archdiocese of Chicago). The photographs contained in the album were taken as rose petals descended from the church’s ceiling upon the congregation below.

Screenshot 2015-05-27 11.11.54

As Fr. Z explains the ritual, it developed for the Solemnity of Pentecost in the Pantheon (now a minor basilica called S. Maria ad martyres). Rose petals are dropped through the circular oculus opening at the top of the dome, which is the widest  in all of Rome.  The petals descend upon the congregation below, reminding its members of the descent of the Holy Spirit like tongues of flame.

In the picture below, study carefully the faces of the little girl and boy.

Screenshot 2015-05-27 11.14.11

Now study carefully the surprise, delight, and glee on the faces of the children in the church’s main aisle.

Screenshot 2015-05-27 11.12.43

It’s obvious this ritual has struck a sense of awe and wonder into these young people, opening their consciouness if not their souls to the mystery surrounding the birth of the Church on Pentecost Sunday.

Over the past five-plus decades, how often has Rudolph Otto’s description of the “awe and wonder” (tremendum et facinans) that is experienced upon encountering the Holy been demonstrably visible on the faces and in the behavior of young congregants?

During those decades since the Second Vatican Council, have all of those guitar Masses, puppet Masses, and even those clown Masses struck young congregants with that sense of awe and wonder that’s evident in these photographs?

When it came to evangelizing young people through the Mass, the architect of the so-called “reformed” liturgy, Cardinal Annibale Bugnini, may have made the Mass more relevant by a worldly standard by appealing to the masses (pardon the pun).


Cardinal Annibale Bugnini

But, he very well have thrown the baby away with the bathwater by a spiritual standard.




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8 Responses to Evangelizing young people: The power of liturgical signs and symbols…

  • We are incarnate souls, body and spirit. The iconoclasts refuse to believe that, and privilege the spiritual.

    To everyone’s detriment.

  • Yes. and I repeat my comment on Ireland’s Debacle: “People are attracted to mysticism and sacrament which the Catholic Church has been playing down for 50 years now…”

  • Only one woman and one little girl covering their heads as Scripture instructs us to do when we are in God’s house. Shameful.

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  • Is the dropping of rose petals any less “gimmicky” than a guitar mass? Is it authenticaly liturgical? Since when do we measure sanctity by the expressions on the faces of a few children? One of the flaws in the criticism of the post-Vatican II Mass is that some people compare the worst cases of liturgical abuse to the best experiences of trad-Latin Mass. That’s not fair. When done with faith,reverence, and adherence to sound liturgy, the modern Mass is engaging and mystical. I was an altar boy in the pre-Vatical II times, and I experienced the traditional Mass done badly with priests going through the motions with their backs to disengaged Mass-goers either involved in their own personal devotions or sitting through the boredom out of obligation. the Vatican II Church Fathers determined what is best for the Body of Christ. I think we should seek to conduct liturgy with the goal of experiencing heaven on earth faithful to their vision of the celebration of the Eucharist.

  • ” the Vatican II Church Fathers determined what is best for the Body of Christ.”

    If what we have experienced in the liturgy over the past half century is the best as determined by the participants in Vatican II, that is perhaps the most appalling commentary on Vatican II I have ever read.

  • The rose petals were floating down at the END of Mass. They didn’t alter the form or content of the Liturgy

  • Still too gimmicky for me.

Cardinal Maradiaga and worshipping at the altar of environmentalism…

Tuesday, May 19, AD 2015


According to Vatican Insider, Cardinal Óscar Andrés Rodríguez Maradiaga of Honduras isn’t very much happy with climate change skeptics in the U.S.A. who have expressed their reservations concerning Pope Francis’ cozy relationship with those who worship at the altar of environmentalism over at the United Nations.

Cardinal Maradiaga is especially chagrined by those “movements in the United States” he apparently observed during a recent trip to the U.S.

In the Cardinal’s view, members of those movements have had the temerity to express their concern about this cozy relationship and its potential to influence the Pope’s upcoming encyclical letter concerning the environment. Those people are “absurd,” the Cardinal opined:

The ideology surrounding environmental issues is too tied to a capitalism that doesn’t want to stop ruining the environment because they don’t want to give up their profits: these criticisms make no sense! How can they criticise a text they do not even know?

Indeed, if there is climate change, it’s all due to greedy capitalists. Cardinal Maradiaga sounds like Nikita Khrushchev, Fidel Castro, and Che Guevara, all wrapped up into one, doesn’t he?

The Cardinal also apparently fashions himself to be a meteorologist and/or climate scientist. Last week at the Caritas International confab in Rome, Maradiaga challenged the debate swirling around the scientific basis for man-made climate change:

There is a big discussion about whether global warming is scientific or not, but speak to the taxi driver who drove me here today and he’ll tell you the temperature in Rome is not typical of spring; think of the Philippines where there were 21 typhoons this year and in California water is being rationed. This proves that the issue needs to be taken seriously. (italics added)


Perhaps Cardinal Maradiaga should meet the founder of The Weather Channel, John Coleman, to discuss the other point of view.

In 2014, Coleman was a featured speaker at the Ninth International Conference on Climate Change. Listen to Coleman’s presentation about how the global warming frenzy began:

Also, check out Coleman’s two documentaries debunking the global warming scare:

Of course, those who worship at the altar of environmentalism dismiss Coleman’s facts because their dogma posits the opposite.

Some good news (perhaps). Sandro Magister is reporting that the Pope’s encyclical has been drafted, but he has rejected that text and sent it back to be rewritten. Why? Pope Francis fears the head of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, Cardinal Ludwig Müller would “demolish” it.

Let’s hope so if the first draft reflects Cardinal Maradiaga’s “proof.”




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30 Responses to Cardinal Maradiaga and worshipping at the altar of environmentalism…

  • Cardinal Óscar Andrés Rodríguez Maradiaga should have his hands full shepherding Hondurans rather than giving so much attention to global warming. As someone who went on a mission to Honduras, I can tell you he has much work to do in the murder capital of the world.
    “Huge” would be an inadequate adjective to describe the problems of Honduras. Couples cohabiting because government made it profitable to not get married; women lose government benefits if they marry. Drug runners are everywhere. People lack education, which greatly impacts their faith development. The list goes on and on.
    Capitalism is not evil cardinal. In fact, Honduras could benefit from more legit and licit capitalism among other things.

  • in California water is being rationed
    They’ve got a population that is far larger than the water system was designed for, mostly in the desert, using a system that hasn’t been updated the way it was DESIGNED to be updated and upkept for at least a generation, using water on yards and golf courses, which has actually been damaged and where they are dumping a minimum of half the water into the ocean, which still manages to feed vast numbers of people on exports and he concludes this means there’s a problem with the CLIMATE?!?
    Looks to me like the problem is people who have only the vaguest user-end grasp of where water comes from and how it is used is the big problem.

  • The climate change hysteria is not about science. It is about anti-capitalist, socialist ideology.

  • Jerry,

    100%++. In addition, those people dishonestly take $$$ billions of government subsidies while consigning the world’s poor to higher energy costs and lower/slower economic growth and development.
    It seems ironic that a pagan’s familiar quotation can be employed to “shoot down” a cardinal. “Opinion is not truth.” Plato

  • 100% correct Jerry. This isn’t about climate change at all. It’s all about the CONTROL, and the MONEY. End of story.

  • Cardinal Maradiaga said, “In the face of the all-too-evident destruction of Nature, the current capitalist system cannot, on account of its very essence, attain sustainable development, as it engenders and feeds on inequity and social injustice, and is based on the unbridled and predatory use of natural resources, the anarchic production of goods and the encouragement of consumption with the goal of obtaining and concentrating profit.”
    Cardinal Maradiaga fails to understand that ours is NOT a capitalist system but a corporate socialist system. If it were capitalist, then wind and solar energy companies wouldn’t be getting a free handout from the government, and fossil energy companies would be held to the same zero emissions standards to which the nuclear energy industry is held. A capitalist system – a truly free market system – would be a level playing field where all industries are held to the same regulatory standards of safety and emissions with zero government financing. Solar and wind would quickly dry up as being too expensive because their capacity factors – 20% ad 30% respectively – are too low for profitability. Coal, oil and gas would find it too unprofitable to operate because of the expense involved in sequestering their waste (recall the 39 million tons of coal ash that 5 Duke Energy power plants dumped to the Dan River in Brunswick County, NC). Only nuclear would be left standing:
    But it is in big government’s interest to sensationalize the hysteria over global warming because that produces a public incentive for more solar and wind energy facilities which because of their low capacity factors always require spinning fossil fuel reserve – invariably natural gas – and that enriches the pockets of fossil fuel executives as well as providing tax revenue for the politicians promoting this nonsense. Nuclear is opposed specifically because it replaces fossil fuel, and displaces solar and wind. It cuts into the profits of big business men and the revenue stream of big politicians. Ours is NOT capitalism and hasn’t been for more than a half century. It is corporate socialism where Jeff Immelt, CEO of General Electric – a manufacturer of large power plant gas turbines – said nuclear is too hard to do as he was appointed President Obama’s jobs czar and his company got hundreds of millions in tax breaks.
    Think about it. We are all being duped and hoodwinked. And Cardinal Maradiaga, instead of attending to the souls entrusted to his care, pontificates about subjects – both economic and scientific – in which he has ZERO expertise and ZERO authority.
    Time for me to stop lest my blood pressure rises to levels forbidden by my cardiac physician. I am now going to read my Bible and say my nightly prayers. Doing those things is much better for my cardiac health. I shall pray for the Holy Spirit to give me serenity and Cardinal Maradiaga wisdom.

  • Looks to me like the problem is people who have only the vaguest user-end grasp of where water comes from and how it is used is the big problem.

    Ha ha ha! You so funny. Everybody knows water comes from the faucet, like food comes from the back of the grocery store and electricty comes from the outlet! Now excuuuuse me, while I go do something really important, like find out who won on Dancing with the Stars

  • On a more serious note, I have about as much interest in reading an encyclical on climate change as I have in reading the final report of a joint committee investigation into the double procession of the Holy Spirit.

  • Absurdity upon absurdity! It must be that climate change is so much easier to lecture on that sin and salvation. The climate change that these clerics should be concerned about is the coming climate change that will happen upon their death.

  • From today’s Mass Readings:

    “Keep watch over yourselves and over the whole flock
    of which the Holy Spirit has appointed you overseers,
    in which you tend the Church of God
    that he acquired with his own Blood.
    I know that after my departure savage wolves will come among you,
    and they will not spare the flock.
    And from your own group, men will come forward perverting the truth
    to draw the disciples away after them.”

  • LOL! Yeah Michael, talk about ‘Global Warming’!

  • For those who are interested, there are two excellent websites that provide a sound, scientific approach to challenging the catastrophic anthropogenic global warming (CAGW) meme. Neither site “denies” climate change (it always has “changed” and always will) or that human-generated CO2 emissions have some, most likely minimal and not catastrophic, effect on climate.

  • Also TomD, and a PHD climate scientist at Georgia Tech who used to be a warmist.

  • This prelate is a disaster. He has done an abysmal job as Cardinal of Honduras – losing half of his flock – and he consistently runs his mouth about things of which he is totally ignorant.

    Just as I told my son that I have lost my patience with his behavior about his homework – hiding it, leaving it at school and fighting with his parents over doing it – I have lost my patience with such fools as Oscar Cardinal Rodriguez. He is another prelate who would do well to remember the words of St. John Chrysostom.

    I’m no saint myself and don’t purport to be. I expect more of myself and I sure as hell expect more of the Bishops than what we have been getting. +Rodriguez can take his anti-free market screeds and keep them.

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  • Didn’t we (the Church) learn from the last time It weighed in on scientific questions?
    Wasn’t geocentrism (earth at the center of the universe) all the rage in popular opinion in 1633?
    Wasn’t Galileo a geocentric denier???

    There are two scientific questions that only science can answer, and it’s a reach at that:
    1. Is the earth warming?
    2. Are we the cause of it?

  • “Wasn’t Galileo a geocentric denier???”
    From my understanding, Galileo was a student of Michael Kopernic, a Polish astronomer, known in Latin as Copernicus who taught that the world revolved around the sun. It is also my understanding that the Church put Galileo under house arrest for trying to teach science as Scripture, much like some Christians who teach that the world is only 4,000 or 6,000 years old.

  • Galileo’s issues were that he was an ass, an oath-breaker didn’t have the evidence to support what he was teaching as fact.
    He was an oath breaker because he promised to not teach it as fact unless there was evidence, and he was an ass because when his friend, the Pope, paid him to write a book explaining the strengths and weaknesses of all of the proposed theories, he made a strawman of the theory he didn’t like, ignored more popular ones, and overstated the evidence for the theory he liked. Oh, and put arguments that his friend had made in the mouth of a character called, roughly, ‘the idiot.’

    If you’d like to get really exhaustive detail on it, there’s this:

    I’d be quite happy if this document ended up being something along the lines of “no, you can’t claim something is a fact when you don’t have the evidence for it.” Well, not exactly happy, because it would just be a needless hammer for use against the Church,but of the options where it happens at all….

  • Thank you Foxfier. I had not expected that Galileo had malice. Perhaps Galileo was unequal to the task he had taken an oath to defend. Perhaps the proof was not out there at that time. Science has made much progress. I find it hard to believe that Galileo would use ” a needless hammer” against the Church. Being so gifted, Galileo did not have time to engage in “needlessly hammering” the Church.
    In the matter of climate change, Climate Change is the other name for “people as pollution”. From Malthus to Paul Erlich’s book “Population Bomb” and his other book against people. Climate Change and may be used by progressives as an issue to shield some of their lesser than honest issues, being hatched behind closed doors. I have noticed that when the administration is found out, the administration finds an alternative issue to feed the public.

  • Whoa… My point was simply that the Church should stay out of scientific debate, as Galileo should have certainly stayed out of scripture, Faith and morals.

  • And the point I was making is that the Church couldn’t “stay out of scientific debate” when they were the primary source of funding, not when the idea of “getting involved” is expanded to include standing silent when scientists insist on claiming their theory is supported when they do not actually have the evidence.

    It’s like how the Church can’t “stay out of politics” when the subject of abortion is discussed– human life being sacred is a Church interest.


    Mary, I don’t think he was malicious, I think he was just prideful and not very tolerant for people who didn’t agree with him…especially not when he really didn’t have good support for what he was saying.
    The political impulse, sorta.

  • Thanks Paul Primavera for: “Cardinal Maradiaga fails to understand that ours is NOT a capitalist system but a corporate socialist system.” If Benito Mussolini had lived to see our day, he would be delighted.

  • Mary / Foxfire,
    I think you’re still missing the irony in “Wasn’t Galileo a geocentric denier?”
    – for whatever Galileos’s sins were, he was correct in pointing to the truth of a heliocentric system, and he did go against the scientific and popular grain of his age.
    Global warming is all the rage today in popular thought and science, do you see the similarity, do you see the trap. GW is not a question for the Church to answer, science has its own realm in the pursuit of truth.

  • He didn’t go “against the scientific and popular grain,” he was violating the scientific method by ignoring the lack of support for his theory and substituting rhetoric for evidence.
    If you’d like to know what the state of the science at the time was, I’ll even link to the specific page TOF set up for what evidence they had at what time:
    Assume that anthropogenic global warming is eventually shown to be slightly more accurate than competing theories; that does not mean that the outright fraud and destruction of the careers of those scientists who actually followed the scientific method is somehow justified.

  • {{{replied in the wrong window}}}

  • i’ll say it one more time, very slowly, so it almost surely can’t be taken out of context:

    science has its own realm in the pursuit of truth.

  • And I will rephrase, a few more times, since you seem to find it inconceivable that someone understands what you are saying and does not agree:
    Galileo was not practicing science when he got in trouble.
    Science requires that a theory be supported if it’s going to be purported to be more than a possible theory.
    Polemics is not science.
    Galileo was not acting within the realm of science because he did not have evidence.
    I’ll even quote Michael Flynn, since you seem unwilling to go to the exhaustive link:
    It’s not enough to concoct a plausible story. Sooner or later, there has to be empirical evidence that the story is true.

  • Cardinal Maradiaga: “think of the Philippines where there were 21 typhoons this year….”

    For the record, 21 is the average number of typhoons to enter the Philippines in a year, and has been so since the beginning of meteorological records. This is common knowledge here in the Philippines, but anyone can easily look up this factoid online on any number of sites that are not even directed towards the question of climate change. Seems like Maradiaga can benefit from paying to that scientific discussion that he so summarilly dismisses.

  • What is absurd is those shepherds of a half-empty church in free-fall, with souls rushing to condemnation all around, taking the time to join the agenda of the political left–complete with wealth-transfer hoaxes–under the guise of stewardship.
    Maybe we need to all join the EPA and ignore sin and moral decay to save the world from evil capitalism?

Who should be offended?

Wednesday, May 13, AD 2015


Imagine the leaders of a Catholic high school having the audacity to bring in a speaker to inform the student body about the nature of the horrific violence being perpetrated against people in the Middle East, in general, and Christians and Assyrian Catholics, in particular.

Yet, according to some of parents, that’s what happened a couple of weeks back at Junipero Serra Catholic High School (JSCHS), a Catholic college prep school located in San Mateo, California.

As a Catholic school, JSCHS leadership believed it important to inform the student body about these atrocities against humanity, in general, and fellow Catholics, in particular. So, they invited Mrs. Juliana Taimoorazy to address students concerning the nature of the horrific violence being perpetrated against people in the Middle East.

Mrs. Taimoorazy’s narrative was particularly compelling because, being Assyrian, she is a member of one of the longest-living ethnic groups on Earth. For ISIS radicals, Assyrian Catholics are overt targets. Mrs. Taimoorazy related, among other things, that the Muslims will hold parents captive and then proceed to cook and eat their children in front of them. Taimoorazy has lost a couple of her own children as well as her grandparents to the Muslims. Some students found Mrs. Taimoorazy’s presentation compelling and motivating, having the effect of putting the fear of God in them.

Evidently, that description of “Muslims” didn’t set well with some parents of JSCHS students who are of Middle-Eastern descent and/or are Muslim. Hearing reports about the speaker’s narrative, some of those parents were outraged, claiming the speaker’s narrative negatively portrayed Muslims, in general, and negatively affected their families, in particular.

Events conspired to devolve to the point that JSCHS’s “Head of Faith Formation,” Patrick Reidy, felt impelled to reiterate to the JSCHS student body the following Monday

….that JSerra Catholic High School’s intention for Friday’s presentation was to raise awareness about the gruesome massacres occurring in the Middle East. In no way did the school intend to be political. Rather, we hoped that the JSerra community would become more acutely aware of the extremism that is brutalizing all of our brothers and sisters in the human family so that we can pray for them and assist them in creative and generous ways.

Reidy then sent an email to the parents of JSCHS students in which Reidy expressed his “heartfelt sorrow for the way recent events may have immediately affected your own family” noting that this “is deeply distressing for all of us here.” Reidy proceeded to blame Mrs. Taimoorazy for the brouhaha. He wrote:

Our speaker focused on the attacks against Christians and was not inclusive of the other peoples that have been terrorized by radical groups such as ISIS. Furthermore, she did not always distinguish clearly between radical Islamic groups and ordinary Muslims. This is a necessary distinction to make. (italics added)

Step back for a moment. Imagine Catholic parents of students enrolled in a Muslim school complaining that they’re offended that a Muslim speaker detailed the atrocities perpetrated upon Muslims by the Crusaders. Should those parents of Catholic students expect that the leadership of that Muslim school would apologize for not being “inclusive” enough of them and not carefully distinguishing between Crusaders and ordinary Catholics?

To ensure that Mrs. Taimoorazy’s message will be revised appropriately for JSCHS students, Reidy noted:

We have been following up in our Religion and History classes to make sure that our students know that there is a distinction. We also want to help them process the emotional content of these outrages, the irrationality of which can seem impossible to imagine.

Yes, indeed. JSCHS students need to “process” the “emotional content of these outrages.” But, apparently not from the perspective of what Christians and Catholics are being compelled to endure, but from what some JSCHS students interpreted Mrs. Tiamoorazy’s message to imply about them and their families as well as what some JSCHS students felt compelled to do to some of their fellow students.

To punctuate his message of contrition, Reidy closed his email, stating:

I hope that you know that JSerra welcomes all families of all religious beliefs and does not equate Islam with ISIS. Nor do we or will we at any time tolerate taunting, harassing, belittling or bullying of anyone based on their ethnicity or religious beliefs.  As followers of Jesus Christ we find any such behavior inconsistent with the dignity of the human person and morally unacceptable.

What does “taunting, harassing, belittling or bullying” have to do with Mrs. Taimoorazy’s presentation in a Catholic school about what Christians and Catholics are enduring at the hands of Muslims (or, must it be said because people don’t already understand the distinction, radical Muslims)? If some JSCHS students left her presentation believing she was encouaging them to engage in thuggery, then those students should be dealt with as thugs should and ought to be dealt with.

But, to blame Mrs. Taimoorazy for their conduct and to apologize to the point of telling the JSCHS student body that she had been one-sided in her presentation?

That seems to be inclusion run awry.

What will be next? Apologizing to those who claim that Junipero Serra was a prejudiced, bigoted anti-Native American who thought they needed to be imprisoned and brainwashed if they were to be civilized?




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15 Responses to Who should be offended?

  • Seventy years ago under this logic:

    “The lecture on the death camps set up by the Germans given at JSerra recently focused only on the atrocities committed by Nazi Germany. That was terribly one sided. We will now have a follow up lecture focusing on how the Germans are a wonderful people who brew great beer, make fantastic tubas and have a terrific culture. We must also keep in mind that the Germans as a group are not morally culpable for the Nazi crimes, even though a plurality voted the Nazis into power, only a small minority did anything to oppose the Nazis and that the average German now contends he and she knew nothing about the atrocities, even though those atrocities involved millions of Germans, that rumors of what was going on were rife throughout Germany and that every German community of any size had railheads through which the victims of the Third Reich were routinely shuttled on their way to death camps.”

  • The school has 900 students, or (let’s guess) about that many families as well. If the school’s population was a random draw, that would mean nine sets of Muslim parents. This is a Catholic school, which will tend to repel non-Catholics to a degree. It’s also all male, which may attract some muslims. I doubt he had to talk to more than a few people. So, instead of explaining the deal to them, he pesters everyone else. The complainers are commonly pushing on an open door, and in a symbiotic relationship with termites in the building.

  • Two points because outrage is one of my strong “suits.”

    One, the outraged should more appropriately direct said “outrage” toward jihadis. Firm grasp of the obvious there, T.
    Two, the outraged very appropriately referred to “ordinary” muslims. No mention was made of “good” muslims. Excellent because good mulsims only exist in the feverish minds of liberal idiots (I repeat myslef again) and cemeteries.

    Are you sufficiently outarged?

  • It is incumbent (big word) on the plaintiffs to prove that the truth being told about Muslim atrocities are false and slanderous. Let them bring proof that there are no atrocities going on in the world. Then they will have a legal basis for complaint.

  • “Moderate Muslim” is to “Islamist Jihadi” as “Good German” is to “Committed Nazi”.

  • “So let me get this straight… you’re offended I told other people about you punching me.”

    I wonder where these disclaimers are when there’s the talk about how police brutalize minorities. (“Oh but not all police…”)

  • This is an example of political correctness…which btw, is a contradiction in terms.

    The guest spoke “her” words. Leave it at that.
    The slaughtered children from the bloody hands of Isis no longer have the ability to participate in lectures. Nothing politically correct in that!

  • The response of these families is all you need to know about moderate muslims. The same can be said about the state of “Catholic” education in this country. I always think to myself, where are the adults in charge?

  • Donald, you shouldn’t post this stuff- it makes my blood boil.

    What a weak school body. That this woman had to be thrown under the bus by a pathetic excuse for a school leader.

    All the school principal had to say to these pests is if they don’t like it- then leave. The same can be said to any Muslim that threatens the freedom, intelligence and democratic truth of a country. If you don’t like a spade to be called a spade- then go away.

    I understand if you delete my comment Donald.

  • How long will it take, and at what cost, for Christians to WAKE UP??

  • So-called “ordinary” Muslims require Christians to apologize for forcing the “other” Muslims to mass-murder Chrisitians that lived-and-died in Muslim-infested hell holes.
    You can’t make up this stuff.

  • As a traditional Catholic, there are VERY FEW “Catholic” schools I would waste my money on. Kudos to Archbishop Cordileone for his stance for authentic Catholic values. Frankly, I imagine huge infusions of grace is the only thing maintaining his spiritual sanity in the absurdly PC infected SFBay area. The devil has more than a foothold in some areas!

  • This school needs to be closed down. It’s clearly not Catholic anymore.

  • If moderate Muslims want to be offended by the characterization of Islam as gruesome and violent, shouldn’t their outrage be directed at ISIS, as they are the ones being gruesome and violent in the name of Islam? How exactly is that the speaker’s fault, or the schools, when they are just spreading awareness of documented contemporary events? It doesn’t make logical sense to shoot the messenger in the name of political correctness and tolerance when they are only reporting the facts of the matter – be outraged at the source of the problem and, further, do something about it as opposed to just complaining that your feelings are hurt.

  • I was thinking exactly the same thing as Donald R. McClarey. The pseudo outrage of people who do not understand that 80% of Muslims in America do not think that radical jihadis are all that bad and that Muslims in the Middle East give at least tacit support to the slaughter. Some people want to bury their heads in the sand. Others have been convinced by so called “progressives” that it’s OK to side with the terrorists.

Presenting some eminent alumni/ae of the nation’s catholic colleges and universities…

Wednesday, April 29, AD 2015


Over at Catholic Education Daily, Kimberly Scharfenberger has done a yeowoman’s job in culling together some data concerning the nation’s Catholic colleges and law schools:

  • They boast 65 alumni who are members of the U.S. House of Representatives.
  • That’s 15% of the House’s membership, twice the number of Catholic 4-year institutions of higher education in the United States.

Is that political clout something about which the Church should be proud?

Scharfenberger reports that 50%+ of these Catholic college alumni/ae—38 to be precise—have votes on abortion that “should mortify their alma maters.”

Pro-abortion organizations such as the National Abortion Rights Action League (NARAL) and Planned Parenthood have rated most of those 38 alumni/ae at 100%. In contrast, the National Right to Life Committee (NRLC) has rated many of them at 0% when the vote comes to significant life-related issues.

Here’s the roll call of those 38 members of the U.S. House of Representatives who were educated at Catholic institutions and have consistently voted in favor of abortion rights:

  • Brad Ashford (NE)
  • Brendan Boyle (PA)
  • Mike Capuano (MA)
  • David Cicilline(RI)
  • Gerry Connolly (VA)
  • John Delaney (MD)
  • Rosa DeLauro (CN)
  • Mark DeSaulnier (CA)
  • Deborah Dingell (MI)
  • Sam Farr (CA)
  • Lois Frankel (FL)
  • Steny Hoyer (MD)
  • Jared Huffman (CA)
  • Hakeem Jeffries (NY)
  • Eddie Bernice Johnson(TX)
  • Bill Keating (MA)
  • Ann McLane Kuster (NH)
  • Ted Lieu (CA)
  • Zoe Lofgren (CA)
  • Stephen Lynch (MA)
  • Sean Patrick Maloney(NY)
  • Betty McCollum (MN)
  • Gwen Moore (WI)
  • Jerrold Nadler (NY)
  • Rick Nolan (MN)
  • Bill Pascrell (NJ)
  • Nancy Pelosi(CA)
  • Mike Quigley (IL)
  • Charles Rangel (NY)
  • Kathleen Rice (NY)
  • Bobby Scott(VA)
  • Albio Sires (NJ)
  • Adam Smith(WA)
  • Chris Van Hollen (MD)
  • Juan Vargas(CA)
  • Filemon Vela, Jr.(TX)
  • Pete Visclosky(IN)
  • Peter Welch(VT)

Another interesting factoid: Of those 38, 27 attended Jesuit institutions. 11 of them—25%—attended Georgetown University.

Something about which the Church should be proud? No.

About which the Church should boast? No.

Something those institutions should honor? No.

But, why did those obviously bright women and men choose to attend Catholic institutions in the first place? It mustn’t have been to learn to think about important matters—like the law and significant life issues—as Catholics do, to paraphrase Blessed John Henry Newman in his Idea of the University and St. John Paul II in Ex Corde Ecclesiae. Or, for that matter, natural law.

No, it must’ve been the institution’s reputation, the prestige associated with the degree awarded, and other such worldly honors and accolades.

“By their fruits you will know them” (Matthew 7:16).




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9 Responses to Presenting some eminent alumni/ae of the nation’s catholic colleges and universities…

  • “Friend, how did you come here without your wedding clothes?” Matthew 22:12

    Will the fate of the (c)atholic’s by name only, be that of the man coming to the wedding dressed in soiled clothes?

    I doubt that they have even considered the possibility.

    “Then the King said to the waiters: Bind his hands and feet, and cast him into the exterior darkness: there shall be weeping and gnashing of teeth.”13

    14-“For many are called but few are chosen.”

  • I wouldn’t attach the word “eminent” to a Congressman or woman.
    Here’s the problem as I see it from reading an annual report/statement of my so-called Catholic alam mater. The section tilted “Catholic Identity” read like a secular humanist manifesto. There was no mention of conversion, Christ, Mass, salvation, etc. Only 65 progressive buzzword like human dignity, peace, jsutice (a=whatever that is), etc.

    Finally I’m pretty sure you won’t get into Heaven if you aided/abetted the mass murders of tens of millions of God’s children, unborn or otherwise.

  • It is heartbreaking to consider how different our society would be if only our so-called
    ‘Catholic’ colleges, law schools, and universities had been fulfilling the mission for
    which they’d been founded. Instead, in the nearly fifty years since the Land-o-Lakes
    declaration severed the bond between bishops and Catholic higher education, these
    schools have been producing pagans, accelerating the decline of this nation.
    Catholics account for ~25% of the population of this country. If Catholic schools had been
    doing their job, would we still have the absolute, unfettered abortion license we see today?
    Would ‘same-sex marriage’ have been pushed on us by the courts in the way it’s been?
    In short, would we be less decadent today if our ‘Catholic’ schools had actually been
    giving catholic educations to our future social, political and cultural elites– rather than
    turning out well-connected pagans for the past fifty years?
    The Cardinal Newman Society produces an annual list of Catholic colleges and universities
    that fulfill its very basic criteria — schools that have access to the Mass on campus, whose
    theology teachers hold a mandatum from the local bishop as required by Canon Law,
    etc, etc. Their requirements to make the list are all no-brainer, minimal standards– and
    yet out of the roughly 240 so-called ‘Catholic’ schools in this country, only about 1/10th can
    make the list. I think a good case could be made that those 216 other schools posing as
    Catholic are simply frauds.
    It’s obvious that Catholic schools in this country have lost all interest in the purpose for
    which they were founded. When will it be acknowledged that rather than helping the
    Church pass on the Faith to the next generation of Catholics, these institutions’ loyalties
    lie elsewhere?

  • Clinton.

    Amen to everything you have said.

  • How many of those 38 have a “D” next to their name, and how many an “R”?
    You know. Just for the record.

  • Sigh. And how many of those public advocates of abortion have been publicly corrected by their bishops?

  • Please, let’s be part of the solution. None of these schools should ever be described as Catholic anymore. They should be identified as “formerly Catholic Georgetown University”, ect. That will help with the false advertising that lures Catholics into thinking their children are at a “Catholic” university when, in fact, they are not.

  • Father of seven.

    Why not call them by their true identity;
    Anti-Catholic Universities.

    Until they have earned the Right by demonstrating adherence too doctrinal beliefs and not opposing them.

    Until then, let them be known as Anti-Catholic!

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Perhaps Catholic schools no longer provide an answer…

Tuesday, April 21, AD 2015


Over at The Wanderer, James J. Kirkpatrick has written a defense of San Francisco’s Archbishop, Salvatore Cordileone, for injecting a so-called “morality clause” into the contract of archdiocesan teachers. Archbishop Cordileone has come under heavy fire from activists—including some self-identified “prominent” Catholics—who claim the clause would “create a repressive environment in which not only dissent, but any critical thought, robust exchange of ideas and genuine dialogue are discouraged and punishable by loss of livelihood.”

All Archbishop Cordileone apparently has required is that employees of San Francisco’s archdiocesan schools “conform their hearts, minds and consciences, as well as their public and private behavior, ever more closely to the truths taught by the Catholic Church.” These moral issues include “adultery, masturbation, fornication, the viewing of pornography and homosexual relations” as well as “the definition of marriage as the union of one man and one woman.”

Presumably, Kirkpatrick accurately assesses that

…this is not the understanding of the role of teachers of secular subjects in Catholic schools held by those protesting Archbishop Cordileone’s morality clause in San Francisco; they do not see the teachers of secular subjects as “ministers” of the Catholic faith.




Yes, the ideal is that “practical” Catholics (defined by Kirkpatrick as “loyal to…Church teaching”) should be teaching every course in the curriculum. It is also quite likely that those who protest the Archbishop’s mandate don’t hold that view.

The issue isn’t just who is teaching those courses, as the ideal is that every employee appreciates one’s ministerial role simply because the school is a Catholic school.

Why? Contrary to Mr. Kirkpatrick’s assessment, the subject taught in Catholic schools is not the various academic disciplines comprising the curriculum. No, the subject taught is each and every student enrolled in the school.

Those who work in Catholic schools are charged with forming what the Church calls an “integral person,” that is, a person whose mind, body, and soul are imbued with the truth as revealed by the Gospel as well as the truths unveiled by human arts and sciences.

In this sense, administrators, teachers, and staff members of a Catholic school aren’t just “professionals” but also are a community of adult “ministers” who collaborate in forming integral persons and, at a minimum, each according to one’s contractual responsibilities. If “practical” Catholics aren’t available, there are many “practical” non-Catholics and non-Christians who might very much desire to minister in this way to the students enrolled in Catholic schools. Certainly this is not the ideal, but preferable to a community of adults who are, at best, “Catholic In Name Only.”

But, Kirkpatrick veers away from the facts when he asks whether this ideal is a realistic possibility or even necessary, in every instance. Yes, as he notes,

It doesn’t make sense for a Catholic school to hire teachers of subjects such as those who are going to devote their classes to promulgating a worldview indistinguishable from what is taught at a “progressive” academy in Greenwich Village or Berkeley.

He then adds:

That is not the reason why Catholic parents send their children to Catholic schools.

Really? For decades, research findings have been rather consistent: Parents send their children to Catholic schools for a number of reasons. In general order of preference, these include: a strong academic reputation; a climate characterized by order and discipline; teachers who care; and, a sense of community that emphasizes generic, pan-Protestant values. Teaching and practicing the Catholic faith appears very low in the list of reasons (anywhere from 10th to 15th).

Reminiscing a bit about his five brothers and sisters, all of whom graduated from their parish elementary school in the late 1950s and 60s, Kirkpatrick notes:

…we could chose [sic] from literally dozens of Catholic high schools in New York City, run by many different orders of priests and religious brothers and sisters: Jesuits, Marists, Christian Brothers, Dominican Sisters, and the Congregation of the Sisters of St. Joseph, for starters. It was pretty much the same during the years I taught at a Catholic high school in the Bronx in the mid-1960s.

Once again, Kirkpatrick is accurate in that many people do “call those years the ‘golden age’ of Catholic education in the United States.” And perhaps they were. He is also accurate when assessing that

…there were very few laymen who taught with me who considered themselves “ministers” of the faith. In fact, not all practiced their faith. Not all were Catholics. More than a few dissented from the Church’s teachings on contraception, divorce and remarriage, and abortion.

But, Kirkpatrick may not be as accurate as he believes in his assessment that

 All of them…would have accepted—some more compliantly than others—a requirement that they not use their classes to proselytize anti-Catholic views; all would accept the proposition that they serve as models of good behavior and solid citizenship in their role as teachers. All would agree that they had a responsibility to teach academically sound courses. (italics added)

Today, the sad fact is that many graduates of those Catholic schools Kirkpatrick laments having passed from the scene are not “practical” Catholics but hold dubious moral positions that align better with those of liberal Protestantism. Nancy Pelosi and Dick Durbin are but two examples of “prominent Catholics” who had nearly the same educational experience about which Mr. Kirkpatrick reminisces…all the way through Catholic college and graduate school.

In fact, the research once again is pretty clear that, beginning in the mid- to late- 1960s—as the transition to lay faculty started—those who have taught in Catholic schools have been eerily similar to the public at large in terms of their attitudes about Catholic moral teaching, in general, and the very matters Archbishop Cordileone has contractually mandated, in particular.

Apparently, those teachers weren’t quite as willing to comply with keeping their moral opinions to themselves. One outcome of this transition has evidenced scores on standardized tests of basic knowledge of the Catholic faith and its practices have for the most part demonstrated no significant difference between graduates of Catholic elementary and high schools and those who attended parish religious education programs.

Embarrassing but true.

In retrospect, that “Golden Age” about which Kirkpatrick reminisces may not have been so golden, after all. It may have been in some respects, but not quite as golden as Kirkpatrick implies.

Yes, it would be a tremendous boon to the Church if, as Kirkpatrick notes,

…the religion courses were sound, and the social studies and literature courses were supportive of Catholic values, and the Mass and the rosary were regular parts of the students’ lives, the school was solidly Catholic, worth every dollar in tuition payments.

In most locales. there simply aren’t a sufficient number of those “practical Catholic” parents whom Kirkpatrick identifies as “looking for a solidly Catholic environment for their children” for parishes to operate the kind of Catholic school he envisions.

Perhaps the more challenging and difficult truth that must be considered in light of the signs of the times is that, in face of the fact that many so-called “Catholic” schools are “Catholic in Name Only,” perhaps the Church should stop sponsoring educational institutions. After all, finding qualified personnel has been a perennial problem for Catholic schools. Paying a just wage to those who are qualified and willing to teach in Catholic schools has also been a perennial problem for Catholic schools. Building and funding those schools has been yet another perennial problem for Catholic schools.

The Church has an interest in the moral education of baptized children, not necessarily in building Catholic schools to do that. Parents possess a prior right to educate their children as they see fit and when it come to the moral education of Catholic children, the Church must figure out how best to support parents in what is their prior right.

Confronting a new age having different challenges may require discerning more effective ways to catechize children and young adults so that one day, they will be the kind of “practical” adult Catholics that all of us would hope they would be. After all, they’re going to be the Church’s future if it’s to be a Catholic Church.




To read James J. Kirkpatrick’s article in the Wanderer, click on the following link:

To read about the reaction to Archbishop Salvatore Cordileone’s mandate, click on the following link:

To read The Motley Monk’s daily blog, Omnibus, click on the following link:

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8 Responses to Perhaps Catholic schools no longer provide an answer…

  • The supposed Golden Age somehow led rather rapidly to complete collapse of Catholic culture in the biggest US cities. Some of that can be blamed on elements in the Church angling for that — but where, exactly, were they educated? By the supposedly terrifically formed Catholic schools?

    The problem is deeper than that. The bishops had already decided that the prestige and public political and social power hat their position afforded them mattered more than doctrine. That had happened as soon as none complained about JFK saying his personal conscience wouldn’t influence his political actions.

    Catholic schools made sense when the demographics of Catholics could support them. Now, parishes bring in non Catholics not to evangelize them but to afford the best and building upkeep. The less the student body is Catholic, the less the orthodox Catholics will give their time and treasure to that parish. The more the nominally Catholic will get the sense that Catholic practice isn’t a requirement for their souls, just a tuition break.

    Catholic schools have long since stopped being academically strong. Their teachers are the same as public school ones, educated in the same colleges and with just as little knowledge and no more wisdom.

    The Catholic schools should close until they can evangelize their parishes back to bursting with children. If they can do that, then there may be a point to it again. Right now, it is largely indistinguishable from state ed.

  • The Kingdom of God will not be advanced by shuttering Catholic schools. They can always be improved. But the greatest enemies of Catholic schools I have long found to be government-school Catholics. God save us all from such “discerning more effective ways to catechize children and young adults.” Their goal is to close Catholic schools, not to catechize the students. Period.

  • In most locales. there simply aren’t a sufficient number of those “practical Catholic” parents whom Kirkpatrick identifies as “looking for a solidly Catholic environment for their children” for parishes to operate the kind of Catholic school he envisions.

    That’s because it’s been hammered across that a Catholic School won’t provide it– they can’t even provide proper faith formation classes once a week, all too often. More likely to get politics and theology of nice than a foundation for understanding Catholicism.

    It’s not that there’s no demand, it’s that there’s been a huge background of the only folks who come out satisfied are the ones not having kids, if they even stay in the Church.

  • The key to renewal of Catholic School education is money. Every parish should have an endowment fund to support the nearest Catholic school(s). The endowments would pay teacher salaries only and in proportion to the ratio of active Catholic school students. Local parish control and staffing by volunteers will keep costs low and protect the funds from sex abuse litigation. Funds could be invested in diocesan approved vehicles such as the Ave Maria Rising Dividend Fund. The diocese could provide each parish with exemplar paperwork and bylaws to file 501(c)3 paperwork, saving costs and redundant effort. The intent is to make a Catholic school education as affordable as possible for every active Catholic family. Few middle class families can afford $6k+ per child after tax for tuition. Many baby boomer grandparents would happily contribute to these parish funds where their children reside. Great strength would inhere to the church by ‘feeding the lambs” as most of the active Church volunteers of my acquaintance did indeed attend Catholic school. Pastors need to be an important presence in the schools. They should walk among the children occasionally at recess and visit each class for a short talk at Easter and Christmas. Pay them too, an honorarium. Get the teacher pay above public schools and enroll them in Christian Medical Sharing groups. Let our children attend schools where they see a crucifix above everything sand where the Name of God may be used in prayer. A Catholic person might think a so-called Synod for the Family might actually look at helping our children.

  • Money isn’t the problem. I wouldn’t allow my children to attend our parish school at any price, including free. The school is crummy. The school can’t teach kids to read or write or spell or subtract. And it still isn’t saving their souls. My kids’ school costs a great deal and is Christian. The evangelicals running it can walk and chew gum at the same time, imagine that.

    At every one of the dozen parochial schools within 4 square miles of my home, an endowment would just allow the schools to carry on their belief that each is good enough because it used to be good enough.

    The question remains: what evidence is there a parish knows how to teach children to read and can save souls at the same time? Currently none. So the parish should focus on the latter. If it can do that, then it can have a school that also focuses on the former.

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  • The reason my kids don’t go to Catholic school is the cost. As costs rose in general, less was spent for the school. But the staffing turned to “professionals” in most cases, who expect to be paid like professionals, regardless of their faith/lives. Over the years this sprials out of control. The solution, I think, is not to close the schools, but to: 1) fund the schools properly, even connecting local parishes to one school; 2) staff the school with teachers and administrators who support and live out the faith (they exist, believe me, they just go teach in the better funded public schools); and 3) priests and bishops need to actively encourage families to send their kids to the schools. (I’ve known too many priests and bishops who don’t show much interest in encouraging Catholic school attendance for Catholics.)

    Pius XI wrote a great letter on education…. we’ve forgotten it.

    (This doesn’t apply to all Catholic schools, just many, many, many of them)

  • Without a doubt, Catholic schools represent a great potential for the Church. However, in the post-Conciliar era, many of them actually were destructive to the faith because staff members themselves had become hostile to the true faith. Thus, the collapse of the Church in America was being actively assisted by such Catholic schools. Jesus said, “without me you can do nothing.” In other words, even true doctrine, without Christian inner virtue — only possible with prayer — was not sufficient for the Church of the 50″s to digest the Council. Even today orthodoxy alone is not enough. More reliance on prayer is essential. I suspect that TV had a lot to do with the end of the family rosary and evening benedictions. We have to have the courage to renounce other pastimes and give time to prayer, not just for ourselves but for this poor world.

In this picture, who really are the “dreamers”?

Tuesday, April 14, AD 2015


My thesis is as simple as it is straightforward: The Roman Catholic Church should accept no federal dollars.

My response to the naysayers is equally simple and straightforward, per Amanda Hocking in My Blood Approves: “When you dance with the devil, the devil doesn’t change. The devil changes you.”

Consider the nation’s largest resettlement agency, the USCCB’s Migration and Refugee Services (MRS).

MRS estimates that between October 1, 2013, and September 30, 2014, ~90k young illegal immigrants crossed the border. To deal with the human needs associated with this influx, MRS had a budget of ~$71M (~$789/illegal immigrant).

However, 93% of that ~$71M—$66M–flowed into MRS from the federal government’s spigot. MRS argued that they needed this infusion of federal $$$s to assist the federal government to provide care for unaccompanied, young illegal immigrants.

Supporters of MRS ask: “Who could possibly disagree, except for heartless, anti-immigrant, xenophobes?” Then, too: “The federal government is pouring that money into a charitable, religious organization to provide much-needed services that the feds couldn’t possibly provide. You don’t want to expand the size and scope of government, do you?”

Sounds similar to subsidizing faith-based organizations, a central policy objective of the George W. Bush administration.

There’s one, very big problem, however. MRS must provide those services in ways that are consistent with Church teaching.

So, what’s going to happen when unaccompanied, young, illegal immigrant, females get pregnant? Those federal $$$s require that those females receive “reproductive care,” including contraception, emergency contraception, and abortion.

The USCCB rightly argues that such a requirement violates freedom of religion since contraception, emergency contraception, and abortion are against the Church teaching.

However, that argument may matter not one whit.

Why? The American Civil Liberties Union (ALCU) has filed a suit in a federal court “to order the federal government to release documents related to how groups that are awarded government funding contracts are restricting refugee and undocumented immigrant teenagers’ access to reproductive health services, including contraception and abortion.”

A senior staff attorney with the ACLU Reproductive Freedom Project, Brigitte Amiri, told Breitbart News, “Religious freedom does not include the right to take a government contract that requires providing access to health care, and then refuse to provide a teen who has been raped the health care she needs.”

So, it’s “deja vu all over again”:

  • Remember when President Obama double crossed the USCCB after securing its blessing to get Obamacare passed? POTUS promised a religious exemption.
  • Remember when, in July 2014, President Obama issued an executive order banning “all companies that receive a contract from the federal government from discriminating against their LGBT employees.” The USCCB called it “unprecedented and extreme.”
  • And just today, the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission has found “reasonable cause” to rule that a Catholic prep school has unlawfully discriminated against a homosexual band director formerly in the school’s employ.

Get the picture? In baseball, the rule is “three strikes and y’er outta here!”

But, this isn’t baseball. It’s hardball politics, not ecclesiastical politics.

If MRS didn’t take the ~$66M in federal money, its budget would have been ~$5M. MRS would have been free to provide illegal immigrants programs and services in alignment with Church teaching. And, the federal government could use that money to deal with the rest.

But, the USCCB’s desire to expand programming and provide services to more and more illegal immigrants has required taking to the dance floor with the Devil. To keep those federal $$$s flowing into the MRS’ coffers, the USCCB claims that if MRS didn’t provide those services, then chaos would break out.

And that’s the USCCB’s problem?



To read the Breitbart News article, click on the following link:

To read The Motley Monk’s daily blog, Omnibus, click on the following link:



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26 Responses to In this picture, who really are the “dreamers”?

  • I agree completely. The USCCB should use what funds they have to help people and let the UCLA and the Federal government deal with the fallout. If they want to use their money to oppose the church, the church shouldn’t accept it.

  • Sorry for the typo. I meant the ACLU.

  • The USCCB, as a body, is not just stupid. They are beyond stupid.

    The illegal immigrants are here ILLEGALLY. Therefore the USCCB is assisting lawbreakers and justifying it (to themselves) that they are “helping” the poor. Give the poor food, clothing, shelter, medical care, everything they need except a way out of poverty. the USCCB, duped by Obumbler over Obumblercare (and I’m sure not a few bishops wanted the thing passed regardless to its policies on abortion under the guise that it would help “the poor”) and they fall for it again.

    How often does the USCCB ask for contributions to help the poor – where the poor live? Mexico and other Latin American nations just want to dump their poor on the United States and the Democrat Party is only too happy to take them as permanent government aid recipients, just like they do with poor blacks. Cheap votes, dontcha know?

    Back in 1984, the USCCB drafted a letter about the evils of nuclear war – that was when the KGB was cranking up mass hysteria in the West against the US rearming itself and erasing the USSR’s advantage in missiles.

    Pacifist, anti death-penalty, pro-welfare state and environmentalist…..that’s today’s USCCB. Sin? That’s so…….pre-Second Vatican Council! That was done away with! Just like Latin!

  • You are correct, Motley Monk.

  • “My thesis is as simple as it is straightforward: The Roman Catholic Church should accept no federal dollars.”

    Yes, Yes, a thousand times Yes!

    There is a great book waiting to be written on the corrupting power of government money on the Church. Let Caesar keep his coin!

  • “Let Ceasar Keep His Coin” there’s the title.

  • It is almost like the fed gov is grooming the Church. Well, if you will do this we will give you this. In their pride and desire to please the government they say yes, yes. Then the government smacks them and tells them that they must do more because the the bar to accepting certain sins has been lowered. Then gov tells the usccb that they like them and they are doing a good job, but you must do more. Look at all of the people who depend on your services. We want to use you, but to keep your charitable organizations in money you must do this.

  • I am of the firm belief that if these organizations really were ‘based on faith’ divine providence would supply and they wouldn’t have to sell their souls to the devil. Look how two poor nuns, Blessed Mother Teresa of Calcutta and Mother Angelica, foundress of EWTN started with nothing but prayer. We can trust God to provide for His work and watch it prosper, or we can be obliging to atheistic governments. Our Lord said that if we seek God first, He would give us all we need. I’ll take His promise over any man’s.

  • Who pays the piper calls the tune. It was ever thus, and our bishops are
    deluding themselves if they think they are an exception to that rule. Of
    course, the bureaucracies at both the USCCB and diocesan chancery level
    would probably need to be pruned if federal funds were given up– which
    is one more reason such reform would be fought tooth and nail.

  • Never forget, too, that the government maintains that money is fungible. Our contributions added to government contributions becomes government contributions.

  • “It was ever thus, and our bishops are deluding themselves if they think they are an exception to that rule.”

    Some think they are the exception to the rule. Some unfortunately like the changes in the rules. As noted above, some bishops no longer believe in sin, true justice or other long held teachings of the Church. Some are Secular Messianists who aim for the Kingdom of Man here on Earth.

  • Tom D, thanks for the vocabulary lesson. All too aware of the concept, just didn’t know the adjective for it. Fungible: (of goods contracted for without an individual specimen being specified) able to replace or be replaced by another identical item; mutually interchangeable:
    “money is fungible—money that is raised for one purpose can easily be used for another”. It’s hard to be pure when one accepts money from the government.

  • Many years ago my 5th grade son at St. Francis of Assisi School announced that when he grew up he was going to be a politician or a bishop. I told him that the latter was often the former.
    A bishop should understand how governments work at different levels, but he shouldn’t be an instrument of any government. Cdl Dolan believing Obama’s promise to him about Obamacare was example of costly naivete`.

  • The Proverbial “Heaven On Earth” & NOT HEAVEN, is what the USCCB believes in. These are Cassock Wearing Secular Humanists.

  • Except for those who are “Fighting The Good Fight”(Salvatore Cordileone, Robert Morlino & Raymond Leo Cardinal Burke).

  • can anyone total the entire amount of Federal money that goes to the USCCB and subsidiaries like Catholic Charities? Is it over 250 million? I looked up some form 990s a few years ago and vowed never to give another nickle to the bishops or Catholic Charities. They are ‘owned’ by the Feds. Our poor, sufferin Church is simply an NGO that ignores the folks in the pews except as a minor source of revenue. No wonder they support every expansion of the family destroying welfare state. The road to Hell is paved with the skulls of bishops.

  • Shawn?
    St. John Chrysostom would be proud of you, for utilizing his statement “The Road To Hell is paved with the Skulls of Bishops.”
    We don’t NEED the Jolly “Ho, Ho, Ho” of Timothy Cardinal Dolan. We truly NEED Real Shepherds.

  • USCCB. For certain Bishops the following passage is appropriate;
    “But woe to you scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites; because you shut the kingdom of heaven against men, for you yourselves do not enter in; and those that are going in, you suffer not to enter.” – Matthew 23:13

    Scandal is, and has always been, a constant reminder for the Church that the spirit that entered Judas can just as well enter into any man regardless of title. Frequent confession, frequent Eucharistic adoration, frequent reception of Jesus in Holy Mass, and daily prayer will help in discernment.

    Please keep praying for our clergy!

  • So, what’s going to happen when unaccompanied, young, illegal immigrant, females get pregnant?

    I know what the Monk meant, but I just have to laugh at this every time I see it phrased like this. As if getting pregnant was like getting a sprained ankle. “Man I was just walking down the sidewalk and next thing I knew, I tripped and got pregnant!” Or the flu. “Yeah Sarah was pregnant last week and now everybody in the office has got it.”

    Really it’s darkly humorous how much we’ve removed choice and personal responsibility from an event that is almost always caused by such choice.

  • Nate-
    the sad thing is, this time it’s not just because of the desire to separate responsibility from sex.
    A lot of the pregnant girls are pregnant because they were brought up here as sex slaves, generally by other “unaccompanied children.” (Who might even have a birth certificate to prove they’re 15, ignore the gray hair!)
    I’d be delighted to at least have the Church thinking very hard before accepting any contracts from the government. It’s about as likely as any of them mentioning “you know the whole ‘render unto Cesar’ thing applies to immigration, drug and labor laws, too, right?”

  • Well, it is tax day. The money coming from the government ought to come with no strings, NO STRINGS ATTACHED, as it is taxpayers’ money to begin and end with. the rest is censored. Ok, I rendered unto Caesar and Caesar got into bed with me and now there are Little Caesars all over the place; the place which is the public square that belongs to each and every citizen in joint and common tenancy. Caesar needs to get over to the forum quickly. Brutus is awaiting Caesar’s arrival.

  • A few years back I followed the USSCB “peace and justice” agenda. I have not looked recently but in the recent past this organization has advocated every and only statist “solutions” and policies including higher minimum wage, higher taxes on the so called rich, open borders, carbon tax, obamacare (sans abortion), etc (but not including the CHD nonsense). Here’s the thing—statism is not a pathway to salvation. It is not charity. We have a great institutional heritage of charitable commitment as Catholics—our forbearers built churches, hospitals, orphanages, schools and fed and clothed the poor. We should return to those things that offer us salvation.

  • The USCCB, (that loosely coupled organic network apart from Catholicism where Bishops need not act as Fathers but Followers), is so desperate for a cause apart from discussion of the contraceptive mentality and all its attendant evils -including being called a bigot, that they are willing to take the dance floor and defile themselves.

  • AMEN!! to the article and precepts in it.

  • I believe the Catholic Church should not only not accept government money of any kind but also volunteer to pay taxes on their income.

    The point, of course, is to free the Church up to speak the TRUTH without fear of reprisals. This is particularly true when recommending candidates for political office.

The rise of the neo-Lutherans: Will there be a schism?

Monday, March 30, AD 2015


Watching last fall’s Extraordinary Synod on the Family from the sidelines, what was surprising was the level of rancor (and perhaps even acrimony) manifesting itself in the debate concerning, among other matters, the Church’s prohibition of divorced/remarried Catholics receiving Holy Communion.

Media reports characterized the division this way:

  • The intelligent, sensitive, and pastoral “pro-Pope Francis” mercy faction (the theological liberals) were doing battle with the unintelligent, insensitive, and unpastoral “anti-Pope Francis” truth faction (the theological conservatives).
  • The leader of the former faction, Cardinal Walter Kasper of Germany, provided the theoretical “Call to Arms” identifying his faction’s much-desired, if not much-anticipated changes to Church teaching. If Cardinal Kasper’s faction prevails, there will be changes to Church teaching. Read: A very good outcome!
  • The leader of the latter faction, Cardinal Raymond Burke, published a chapter in the book, Remaining in the Truth of Christ, reiterating the significance of longstanding Church teaching for the world today. If Cardinal Burke’s faction prevails, there will be no change in Church teaching. Read: A very bad outcome!


That oversimplistic, pro-Kasper bifurcation of what transpired at the Extraordinary Synod distracts attention from what may really be in the offing, namely, the rise of neo-Lutherans who may cause a schism in the Church. Armed with very clever exegetical and political skills, this faction has already artfully devised a way to contort Jesus’ unambiguous teaching against both divorce and remarriage—read Remaining in the Truth of Christ to learn how—into a teaching that would allow for both divorce and remarriage. And the media is delighted.

Using divorced and remarried Catholics—who cannot receive Holy Communion—as public relations props in a strategy to stiffen opposition to Church teaching, the neo-Lutherans are, in reality, forcing Pope Francis to choose up sides in a theological battle. The outcome of that battle could end in schism:

  • If the Pope sides with the neo-Lutherans, his important words about mercy will be translated into Church teaching, all will be well with the world, and the orthodox faction will have taken quite a drubbing. At least, that’s what the Kapserites would have everyone believe.
  • If the Pope sides with the orthodox Burkites, well…er…ummm…there will be Hell to pay, as the Pope’s words about mercy will end up not being quite as generous as people have been led to believe and they will turn against Rome and the orthodox faction, emptying the pews even more. Again, at least, that’s what the neo-Lutherans would have everyone believe.

Apparently, the neo-Lutherans are as serious and as stubborn as was the Augustinian friar, Martin Luther, when in 1517 he posted his 95 theses on the door of the Wittenburg Castle Church. To wit: Consider the words of the President of the German Bishops’ Conference, Cardinal Reinhard Marx. Quoted in Die Tagespost (the original article having since been expunged from the website) stating:

We are not just a subsidiary of Rome. Each episcopal conference is responsible for the pastoral care in their culture and has to proclaim the Gospel in its own unique way. We cannot wait until a synod states something, as we have to carry out marriage and family ministry here.

Positioning himself squarely on the side of the mercy faction led by Cardinal Kasper, Cardinal Marx subsequently backtracked a bit, according to Vaticanista Andrea Gagliarducci.

Even so, the neo-Lutherans are on the march.

But, before concluding an investigation, the general rule is “Follow the money.”

Follow the money: It’s a well-known fact that church attendance in Germany (as in most Western, industrialized nations) is plummeting. What that means for the German bishops, in particular, is that income to their dioceses from the government—derived from a census of those who actually attend Mass—is way, way down.

What better way, then, to increase attendance at Mass in Germany? Extend mercy to the disaffected or alienated Catholics by changing Church teaching concerning divorce and remarriage. Then, all of those other disaffected and alienated Catholics can also be brought back to Mass by changing other Church teachings. However, that will take a bit of time. Right now, what’s imperative is to get one foot into the Porta Sancta at St. Peter’s Basilica, beginning with divorced and remarried Catholics.

porta sancta
The rationale? It’s not selling indulgences and would provide a great opening move in the larger strategy of reforming the Church…once again…via Deutschland.

All or none of that may have entered into Cardinal Kasper’s thought process or the German bishops’ discussions over which Cardinal Marx has presided.

Who’s to know? Only those who are privvy to such knowledge.

Even so, if one is to understand better what the neo-Lutherans may be up to, the facts cannot be dismissed out of hand.

Follow the money: Those coffers need to be replenished if the bishops are to be good stewards of the critical infrastructure and all the other blings in their possession. As has recently been exposed:

  • The Archdiocese of Munich and Freising, led by Cardinal Reinhard Marx, has spent $150M on a new diocesan service center.
  • Cardinal Marx’s residence was renovated at a cost of $9M, paid for by the state of Bavaria. That’s not quite the 31m euros Bishop Franz-Peter Tebartz-van Elst of Limburg spent to renovate his official residence, but $9M can go a long way to make a humble hermitage feel a bit more comfortable.

Follow the moneyIn his National Catholic Register article, Edward Pentin carefully lays out the critics’ argument that the German Bishops’ Conference has become more of a temporal than spiritual power.

Yes, follow the money.

Isn’t that what Martin Luther did when he initiated a schism that eventuated a Reformation?




To read about Cardinal Marx’s statement (as the original Die Tagespost article is no longer available online), click on the following link:

To read Andrea Gagliarducci’s assessment, click on the following link:

To read Edward Pentin’s articles, click on the following links:

To read The Motley Monk’s daily blog, Omnibus, click on the following link:

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23 Responses to The rise of the neo-Lutherans: Will there be a schism?

  • I really wonder exactly how many of the divorced and remarried Catholics are clamoring to receive Holy Communion? They can always avail themselves of Confession.
    Kasper – German
    Martin Luther – German
    ‘Nuf said

  • Um….no. All prior belief, and included in every catechism and in every school religion book and in every teaching and in all prior writings by Catholics is that Catholics who have been divorced and remarried, without having obtained an annulment, may not take the Eucharist. If you like, I can prove this statement by thousands and thousands of references.

    Those who are Catholic must hold to this teaching, since it exactly what has been taught by Jesus and and the Catholic church. It cannot be changed, not even by the Pope, and certainly not by Card. Kasper.

    Those who seek to alter clear and permanent dogma are not in communion with the Catholic church, period. I pray to God we will not have a schism. But of course all who hold to the truths of the Catholic church must continue to hold to them.

  • This is a really sobering article. My thinking is that it wouldn’t happen, but as you point out, it has happened before.

  • I have read on other Catholic websites about the influence of the German speaking bishops on the Second Vatican Council. von Balthasar, Hans Kung, et al had a major influence on the documents issued from the Council.

    Catholicsm in the German speaking areas of Europe has long been in decline. The Austrian bishops are virtually in schism. The revolt against Pope Benedict was deplorable. I don’t know as much about the German speaking Swiss Catholics, but the German Catholics faced official discrimination in the 19th Century due to the Kulturkampf. Countless German Catholics made their way to the USA, my mom’s greatgrandparents, the Deckers from Frankfurt among them. As pointed out, the German Episcopate is most interested in keeping the money flowing in. I have no doubt that they warn the Holy See about the tap being shut off if Kasper’s proposals do not become reality. What’s more, the Catholic Church in Germany has long been influences by Lutheranism.

    Luther was not a schismatic. He was a heretic. There is no faith alone, no Bible alone. Man is not a dung heap, although man often acts like it. The Pope isn’t the Antichrist, despite certain Lutheran confessions claiming it. Bigmouth, blabbermouth, nasty, mean…….maybe, but no ANTICHRIST.

    The Polish bishops – all of them – condemned +Kasper’s proposals and they will NEVER become the law of the Church in Poland. In the USA, it depends on the bishop of your diocese.

  • Ah, but it IS a selling of indulgence isn’t it?

  • I’m unpersuaded by the “follow the money” assumption. If it’s all about the German Church Tax, why are there so many non-German Kasperites? Does Honduras have the Kirchensteuer? Does England? New Zealand? Italy? How about the Philippines? I believe Austria and the Netherlands do have Church Taxes, though far less remunerative than the German version.
    I don’t wish to dismiss the role of the Kirchensteuer in toto, but it seems far too easy and glib an explanation to explain what is happening in the Church today.

  • …take the Eucharist…
    Anne Moore

    Only those who believe they deserve the Eucharist take it. The rest of us who really believe the words, “Lord I am not worthy…” might, if we are properly disposed and free of mortal sin, gratefully receive the Eucharist.
    Wow. Imagine how different the Mass would be if we acted like we really believe the words we speak during the Mass.

  • Allowing the divorced and remarried, without an annulment, to receive Communion may have little net impact in the United States and probably elsewhere. My guess is that most of those who would benefit by this accommodation wouldn’t bother coming back or are happy with their new Protestant affiliation. And of those who did come back their number would be offset by those who were disaffected by this change. In other words, changing Church teachings is not the way to stop the bleeding and increase membership. The Church needs stop being a Democrat NGO and get down to their proper business on helping make people holier by obedience to God and love of neighbor.

  • In Germany the Church tax is based on religious affiliation, as stated in the Lohnsteuerkarte, not on a census of Mass attendance.

    The same rule applies in Alsace-Moselle in France, which was German at the time of the Law of 9 December 1905 Concerning the Separation of Church and State.

  • Michaels Dowd and P-S reinforce the point I was trying to make about the German Church Tax: I suspect the Kasperites know as well as anyone else that allowing the civilly remarried to receive communion is not going to reduce the outflow from the German Church, let alone increase those registering as Catholic on the Lohnsteuerkarte.

    So, if it’s not all about filthy lucre (and it can’t be, given that most Kasperites have little to no pecuniary advantage to look forward to), what’s really going on here?

  • On Mr. Murry’s question: “So, if it’s not all about filthy lucre (and it can’t be, given that most Kasperites have little to no pecuniary advantage to look forward to), what’s really going on here?”

    My guess is this has to do with the future when divorced folks need not worry about their Church status. Given that 50% get divorced this is significant.

  • I also have been finally reading from start to end the whole of the late Warren Carroll’s history of the Catholic Church, and Santayana’s warning about history repeating itself echoes like a death-knell: Duke George of Saxony writes to his ambassadors how the churchmen are morally compromised, and can be “bought out by money” and there is almost no hope to save the traditional Catholic Church (Letter, 1524, p. 68, The Cleaving of Christendom).

    I am glad Motley has highlighted again how these Great Reformers like Marx, Danneels, Kasper, and don’t forget Lehmann as the puppet-master in the background, have spent millions of euros on habitations that re-define the word “palaces”. How can they have any moral authority at all? Ahhh.

  • Each episcopal conference is responsible for the pastoral care in their culture and has to proclaim the Gospel in its own unique way.

    This is true, but… to paraphrase what Sheen said, in that delightful way of his, you are free to draw a triangle in any way you want; you still cannot draw a triangle with four angles, because then it is not a triangle.

  • We don’t want to believe it could be about “filthy lucre” -surely not just such a base explanation. but if we think a bit about Judas, we can see how such a disorientation can lead a person away from Truth.
    Judas, who committed the Big sin of selling out Jesus, practiced his vice concerning money and came gradually more inured by his Smaller sins of thieving along the way. His own thinking became more disordered and he went tragically astray from Jesus.
    And in the letter to 1 Timothy 6 we read
    9 But those who want to be rich fall into temptation and are trapped by many senseless and harmful desires that plunge people into ruin and destruction.
    10 For the love of money is a root of all kinds of evil, and in their eagerness to be rich some have wandered away from the faith and pierced themselves with many pains.

  • I’m not so certain that any new thesis nailed to the church door by neo-Lutherans will cost the lost of any more souls then has the opening of the “window to the world” in Vatican II.

  • Thanks for that Foxfier- it’s only true!
    the idea that pastoral care in a certain culture can be modified (ENCULTURATION) is dangerous when it operates separate from the Teaching Authority of the Church. …” its own unique way” can not take away from unicity– unique is to be an aspect of unicity

  • Murray, it is largely about the money. There are ‘Kasperites’ everywhere, it is true, but they are nowhere as organized as in Germany.

  • One quibble “What that means for the German bishops, in particular, is that income to their dioceses from the government—derived from a census of those who actually attend Mass—is way, way down.”
    This appears to not be correct. The government collects the tax from those who are officially identified as Catholic on their tax returns (see and to avoid paying the tax the lapsed Catholic must officially notify the government they are no longer a Catholic. Simple non-attendance is not enough. According to the article, the resignations from churches has been accelerating due to a new capital gains ruling in a tax court. The wood has become very dry indeed.

  • I understand why people seize upon the money explanation, and have no doubt it plays a substantial role for some German bishops, but it is far from a sufficient explanation of the Kasperite heresy.
    I repeat: If it’s about the money, how is it that so many non-German bishops (often from far poorer countries) have so enthusiastically taken up the cause of income security for the German episcopate? How do we explain Nichols, Cupich, Dew, Baldisseri, Forte, Maradiaga, Palmer-Buckle, Tagle, Dabre, Danneels, McCarrick, Schonborn, Galantino, Mahoney, and perhaps O’Malley and Dolan, among many others?
    How, for that matter, do we explain Bergoglio?
    No doubt there’s a mixture of motives in play here: perhaps some have personal reasons for wishing to relax the Church’s discipline on (e.g.) same-sex relations, in the same way that adulterers tend to favor laxer moral standards for others: they correctly intuit that a more permissive moral environment will spread the guilt around more widely, and thus reduce their own relative culpability. Others may have fallen prey to the Anglican delusion, despite the abundant evidence that doctrinal accommodation empties churches.
    But the clincher for me is that I don’t think Walter Kasper can be bought. (Cardinal Marx is a different story.) Kasper has been advocating heretical ideas since the 1960s, since well before he was a bishop, and well before the Kirchensteuer began to run dry, and I believe he’d continue to do so for love alone. In other words, it’s quite possible that Walter Kasper intends to render the Catholic Church doctrinally impotent in order to hasten her destruction, and that many of his non-German allies share this goal in some fashion. It’s what heretics have always done. If only it were just about money!

  • Looks like the new “Kristallnacht” will cover the streets of Germany with stained glass this time.
    Again, as Ratzinger (Benedict XVI) reminded us, there is no hierarchal authority in any national bishop’s council.

  • Reinhard Cardinal Marx wants the money. Walter Cardinal Kasper is who he is and should have been sent to a monastery to spend the rest of his days decades ago.

    As for the Roman Pontiff, we at The American Catholic, both bloggers and commenters, have been trying to explain him since he was elected.

    The others….Murray, you want explanations of them? Nobody has that much time to explain them to you. Latin America, the United States, Italy, Germany…..all have different upbringings but they have something in common – to hell with Church teaching as it was taught for centuries, let’s accommodate the popular culture.

    That gets NOBODY into heaven.

  • … to render the Catholic Church doctrinally impotent in order to …
    The scoldings, derision, and censure of followers of Sacred Tradition and Sacred Scripture by the above cardinals and more unnamed present a disturbing trend. Could it be a competition with mega-churches to form one of global proportions?

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Christian evangelicals: Those knuckle-dragging, anti-science Neaderthals not…

Monday, March 16, AD 2015


Contrary to the popular caricature that many politicians the mainstream media tout about evangelical Christians—likening them to knuckle-dragging, anti-science Neanderthals—a recent study, “Religious Understandings of Science,” found that ~70% of evangelical Christians believe that religion and science are not in conflict with one another. That is, they believe faith and reason are complementary.


The study, conducted by Rice University Professor of Sociology, Elaine Howard Ecklund, focused upon Christian evangelicals because they constitute approximately 26% of the nation’s population and frequently are depicted as the most hostile body of Christians toward science. About this focus, Ecklund stated:

We really wanted to determine if this claimwas based in any truth. Although many politicians and the media at large portray evangelicals as distrustful of science, we found that this is more myth than reality.

The professor’s findings:

  • 38% of Americans view religion and science as complementary; 35% of Americans view science and religion as entirely independent.
  • 48% of Christian evangelicals view science and religion as complementary; only 21% view them as entirely independent of one another.
  • 15% of Americans and 14% of Christian evangelicals agree that modern science does more harm than good.
  • 76% of scientists in the general U.S. population identify with a religious tradition.
  • Jews (42%), Muslims, Buddhists and Hindus (52% as a group) and the nonreligious (47%) are more interested in new scientific discoveries than evangelicals (22%).

Creationism vs. Evolution

These findings are noteworthy for a couple of reasons.

First: More Christian evangelicals than the population at large believe religion and science are complementary.

Second: The data indicate that fewer Christian evangelicals than the population at large believe religion and science are entirely independent of each other.

Third: It is astounding to learn that 76% of the nation’s scientists identify with a religious tradition and only 24% don’t. If one was to believe media interviews and investigative reports covering matters associated with science, one would mistakenly conclude exactly the opposite was the case.

In sum: The data indicate that the popular caricature touted by politicians and the mainstream media has it backwards. It’s the nation’s population at large that those politicians and the mainstream media should be lampooning, not Christian evangelicals.

But, of course, they can’t do that. Look what happened to Jonathan Gruber. And he was telling the truth!

Or is it that the mainstream media won’t do that? Why so? It’s impossible to assign a motive, but one can surely speculate that doing so furthers a much-cherished agenda: To drive from the public sphere all religious talk and especially the critique faith has to offer as a remedy from a science that is practiced devoid of religion.

Thank goodness, it appears 75% of scientists won’t or don’t do that…despite what the politicians and mainstream media would have people think to the contray.




To read Professor Ecklund’s study, click on the following link:

To read The Motley Monk’s daily blog, Omnibus, click on the following link:


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9 Responses to Christian evangelicals: Those knuckle-dragging, anti-science Neaderthals not…

  • Good post! I gave it to a Baptist friend who was debating atheists who in turn were asserting that any real scientist must eschew religion.
    By whom has the majority of great artwork been produced. By whom have the majority of magnificent architectural edifices been built? By whom have many of the great compositions of music been written? By whom have the majority of today’s scientific discoveries been made? By Christians and Jews, that’s who!
    And what have atheists contributed? 7 million, maybe 10 million or more murdered under Josef Stalin. Perhaps 60 to 100 million murdered under Mao Tse Tung. And millions more under Pol Pot, Idi Amin, Fidel Castro, Kim Il Jong and all the rest. Give an atheist power and he murders.
    Murderer – that is who and what an atheist is, for in denying God he makes himself a god, determining right from wrong, life from death. It is the same as it was it the Garden of Eden when Eve partook of the forbidden fruit.

  • I just ran across this article, which takes a less optimistic view of US evangelicalism and the balance between science and religion:

    I’d be curious to hear what TAC readers think of it.

  • Well, just off the top of my head, and going solely on the title in the link, I’d have to say I agree that we live in an age fraught with bad religion: Malthusianism, Environmentalism, epicurean Hedonism, Narcissism, Caesarism (by which I mean the worship of political personalities).
    It’s the New Paganism.

  • Having clicked over and seeing that it’s a review of Joseph Bottum’s An Anxious Age, I can say that I’ve read the book and that I recommend it.

  • 1) Evolution: Deliberate junk science with an insidious agenda.
    2) The confusion is even in the Church and taught. Magisterial pronouncements by Pope Piius XII – Encyclical Humani Generis – and Pope St. John Paul II [the Great] are twisted and misinterpreted. The Church has never said, as is often stated, One is allowed to ‘believe’ in Evolution provided …
    The American Catholic should do a post on Evolution, the science and Evolution and Church teaching.

  • Oh, good, I was right right off the cuff:

    Bottum asserts that the Poster Children—modern liberals—are in fact quite religious. Their gods are the pantheon of contemporary modern social issues: environmentalism, abortion on demand, redefining and recreating human sexuality, and the like. Their ecclesiology is civic. According to Bottum,

    They are, for the most part, politically liberal, preferring that government rather than private associations (such as intact families or the churches they left behind) address social concerns. They remain puritanical and highly judgmental, at least about health, and like all Puritans they are willing to use law to compel behavior they think right.

    These are the new elites. This is who occupies the public square. How did we go from the Puritans to Poster Children?

    Evangelically presumeably. That is, by spreading the “good news” of social gospel. At least as far as the halls of Congress and the chambers of the Supreme Court. I assume that’s what Pinky was driving at.

  • Christians are getting better at defending their faith Because of the characterization of their faith as not reasonable. So they study the questions of science and faith as a defense and learn, as they go, the real depth of meaning to be found in the revelations of God’s Word and Tradition. They are delighted to find the real cohesion of science and religion.
    St. Peter said, “… Always be ready to give an explanation to anyone who asks you for a reason for your hope,.. 1 Peter 3:15

  • As man grows to spiritual maturity, body and soul, so does man’s stewardship of creation.

  • I wasn’t steering toward anything in particular. To me, the most important idea of the past 1000 years was the complementarity of faith and reason, that paradigm shift of Aquinas that united the natural and the supernatural. Protestantism doesn’t share it – or at a minimum it isn’t in the blood the way it is in Catholicism. Plato, Augustine, and especially Calvin can’t smile at a sunrise the way we can.

    I found that Federalist article interesting because it traced both of the intellectual traditions of the US back to the same movement, a tradition that strongly differed from Catholicism. It interests me to see one group widely miss the mark, and another group narrowly miss it in a different direction. The idea that both misses are caused by the same thing is really fascinating.

    As for how it affects Motley’s article, I’m not sure. I can get how atheists would see faith and reason as incompatible – they almost have to. Do evangelicals see them as somewhat compatible, or completely compatible, or did they just never think through the implications of the relationship between faith and reason? I dunno. There are probably very few places that an American evangelical would feel the need to reject something perceived as scientific. (That’s not the case in Islam, which tends to reject all scientific principles as blasphemies against the omnipotence of God.)

    There’s one other aspect of the science-and-religion issue that rarely gets attention. It’s hinted at in the statistic about interest in scientific discoveries. Evangelicalism has an anti-intellectual bias that encourages personal humility, but also invites the caricature of stupidity. To see this in action you have to go no further than the reaction to Bush’s…eh, you know what, I was going to cite something specific, but I don’t have to. The reaction to Bush in general illustrates the point. It’s long been the case that the right was seen as heartless and the left as clueless; in the modern era, the right doesn’t even get credit for brains. It’s interesting.