Unborn Lives Don’t Matter at DePaul

Thursday, October 20, AD 2016



I couldn’t ask for a better demonstration of the fact that the Catholic Left is basically the same as the Secular Left in this country:

While “Black Lives Matter” posters hang on DePaul administrative office windows, President Rev. Dennis H. Holtschneider has banned College Republicans from hanging their “Unborn Lives Matter” posters on campus, despite the school being the largest Catholic university in the United States, allegedly backing the Catholic tenet (and science) that life begins at conception. According to the university president, these three words are rooted in “bigotry” and might “provoke” other students. 


As relayed by College Republicans Vice President John Minster to The Daily Wire, the conservative group designed the “Unborn Lives Matter” poster to promote their pro-life views and their meeting times. Following standard protocol, the group then submitted their design for approval prior to hanging them up around campus. In a disturbing twist, the “controversial” pro-life posters were pushed all the way to President Holtschneider, who declared that he would prohibit them in order to shield his students from “bigotry” under the “cove of free speech.”

Yes, the word “bigotry” was just used to describe pro-life posters by the president of America’s largest Catholic university.

In an act Minster categorized as an exercise in “shaming” College Republicans, Holtschneider sent out a signed letter to the entire campus on Friday to address what he deemed to be  unacceptable pro-life poster. 

“By our nature, we are committed to developing arguments and exploring important issues that can be steeped in controversy and, oftentimes, emotion,” Holtschneider nonsensically claims, two sentences before banning “controversial” speech. “Yet there will be times when some forms of speech challenge our grounding in Catholic and Vincentian values. When that happens, you will see us refuse to allow members of our community to be subjected to bigotry that occurs under the cover of free speech.”

“In fact, you have seen this in past months, as we have declined to host a proposed speaker and asked students to redesign a banner that provokes the Black Lives Matter movement,” continued Holtschneider, presumably alluding to the banning of Daily Wire Editor-in-Chief Ben Shapiro and Breitbart News’ Milo Yiannopoulos from speaking on campus. 

Linking to DePaul’s Guiding Principles on Speech and Expression literature, Holtschneider then asks students to reflect on the following sentence, which seemingly lumps in the pro-life message with speech “inconsistent” with “Catholic values”:

“We accept that there is a distinction between being provocative and being hurtful. Speech whose primary purpose is to wound is inconsistent with our Vincentian and Catholic values.”

Hilariously, Holtschneider maintains that he is not “unfairly censoring” to “appease a crowd.”

“Some people will say that DePaul’s stance unfairly silences speech to appease a crowd. Nothing can be further from the truth,” he states. 

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21 Responses to Unborn Lives Don’t Matter at DePaul

  • Shame! If this doesn’t wake people up to hippocripal stupidity, I don’t know what will. Thank you for posting this, and I think every blogger could do the same!
    UNBORN Lives Matter: should be eveyone’s slogan.

  • A disaffected traditionalist priest of my acquaintance offered this (somewhat nutty) view of the hierarchy: “It’s like the masons; you don’t rise in the organization unless you commit crimes”. That statement looks a great deal less nutty today than it did when he uttered it in 2004. The church-o-cracy and ‘catholic’ academe are largely populated with parasitoid wasps. They’re actually worse than the secular left because they make more use of subterfuge.

  • “. . . parasitoid wasps.” Art, I love you, man!
    No wonder the people are filled with confusion and doubt.
    I haven’t seen a whole bunch of evidence that unborn lives matter at the Vatican, either.
    Today, the choice for Catholics is crystal clear. A vote for Crooked Hillary is a vote for abortion (packed Supreme Court) and oligarchy. The SJW rationales are comparative trivia and FYI unadulterated b*!!$#@+.
    That fetus you want to kill is a gestational human being. It is not a bacterium. It is not an amoeba. It is not a guppy.
    Orwell wrote 1984 as a warning. Those people use it as a guide.

  • The late Clare Booth Luce once quipped to Bishop Fulton Sheen that Hollywood is where Satan sleeps, because he has no more work to do there.
    If she were alive today, I’m quite certain she would have to include many of our once stalwart Catholic colleges in Satan’s ever-growing list of safe resting places for the diabolical, though I suspect they now have moved lower than even that level of degradation and could now be safely called Satanic nurseries.

  • The poster is classified as bigotry.
    Shame on DePaul.

    When Christ asks the 60 million unborn to describe Rev.Holtschnider’s use of the word bigotry in this matter, only one word will sound from them.


  • Fr. Paul Mankowski, SJ offered about a dozen years ago the opinion that 55-60% of those he began Jesuit formation with in 1974 had no interest in the faith; they were homosexuals hiding in the tall grass. I do wonder what the deal with the Vincentians is.

  • “I AM THE IMMACULATE CONCEPTION” Mary, the Mother of Jesus Christ, tells us that a sovereign person exists in the womb from conception, that is scientific fertilization, with undeniable DNA.
    Holtschneider denies the IMMACULATE CONCEPTION, a dogma proclaimed in 1854. Holtschneider self-excommunicates himself and takes the students with him and our federal tax money., What a liar. What a swindler, What a heretic…No one, not even the devil himself, is free to inflict his heresy on an innocent person. The diploma from depaul is a free pass to hell.

  • Theodore Hessberg is another president of a Catholic college, Notre Dame, who despises the Blessed Virgin Mary, Mother of God.

  • For the most part, “Catholic” education in the United States is crap, from elementary schools through colleges. I won’t waste a dime of my money on any of it.

  • If the College Republicans at De Paul were smart, they’d slap a picture of a black baby on a black lives matter poster accompanied by the statistic that an average of 1876 black babies are aborted everyday and contrast that with the daily homocide average (whatever that is -—not gonna look it up).
    Then they should step back and watch heads explode.
    Hope they pop enough popcorn.

  • Ernst.

    You da’ man.

    Great idea.

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  • Just imagine what you would do if you were Pope for a day. Automatic excommunication would become instantly operative and the list of offenders would include everyone who did not subscribe to the basic historic doctrine of the Catholic Church and vigorously promulgated it. This would probably result in reducing Church membership by 75% or more. Would this be charitable? Yes, as it gives folks a chance to reform before Christ comes again and makes it permanent.

  • Mr. Dowd, My first thought is that that man would have been expelled from the seminary on day-one.
    Evidently, unborn lives don’t matter with Cdl Dolan and the NY Archdiocese lower-archy. If, in fact, faith and morals mattered to any of them, corrupt, incompetent Hillary would not have been invited to the “Al Smith Dinner.” Obama had her pegged in 2008: see the video tapes.
    When President Trump quipped that HRH Hillary was successfully pretending that she doesn’t hate Catholics, the audience’s pro-abortion, useless liberal tools booed.
    I’m pretty sure you are either an idiot or a despicable person if you would contemplate a vote for Hillary. Odds are that person won’t be getting into Heaven, either.

  • Souls falling into hell are not remembered not even by themselves.

  • “Black Lives Matter” is a colossal non-sequitur, making no sense whatever. High time Catholcs look carefully. what is Catholic enough to spend $30’000 or more annually. Totally chaotic logic.

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Caiaphas Apologizes For Christ

Sunday, April 13, AD 2014



This is too brilliant!  By Vecchio di Londra in the comboxes of Father Z:


Dr Caiaphas, the Judaean Head Shul Co-ordinator, apologized today for the unfortunate course the seminar had taken. “It was entirely unforseen. This speaker has a motivational track record, with his popular message of peace and love, and his relaxed and forgiving attitude to multi-choice personal lifestyles. But today mid-lecture he astonished us all with a stream of irrelevant social theory about divorce and remarriage, repeatedly using judgmental words such as ‘fornication’ and ‘sin’ and ‘adultery’: then he came out with that obscure remark about ‘making oneself a eunuch for the kingdom of heaven’ which was of course deeply offensive to all our many, many transgendered and undecided-gender students…

I should have stopped him when I sensed things were going badly, after his initial non-inclusive reference to ‘male and female’. It was all most un-Christian. I even had some students coming up to me afterwards asking me to explain what fornication was – obviously, they’d never heard of it before, and why should they: ‘Sin’ is an optional senior course at this college.

Many of our sophomores were in floods of tears, some were utterly traumatized. We have requested Jesus of Nazareth to take a sabbatical while we sort out his future speaking engagements. I’m sorry to say he has refused, rather intemperately flinging around terms such as ‘vipers’, ‘whited’ and ‘sepulchres’. We take particular objection to the word ‘whited’, as in this college we are proud that everyone may, regardless of race, as well as of sexual orientation or gender identification or indeed none at all, may expect an education that is supportive and above all totally without any tendency to discriminate… “

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3 Responses to Caiaphas Apologizes For Christ

  • Praying two or three major mysteries of the Holy Rosary daily isn’t enough. Four or rather All the major mysteries daily is a must. Buckle up and tighten the belt.
    We’ve just entered the storm.

  • The news article Fr Z quotes starts out:

    SOUTH KINGSTOWN — Kathleen Schlenz of Peace Dale knew something was wrong when her daughter, Anna, arrived home from school Friday.

    The Rev. Francis “Rocky” Hoffman, a priest of Opus Dei, [I know him.] an orthodox division of the Roman Catholic Church

    Um, I would certainly hope that all ‘divisions’ (dioceses, parishes, orders) should be orthodox.

    I’m often reminded of John 6:60 “Many therefore of his disciples, hearing it, said: This saying is hard, and who can hear it?” and 6:66 “After this many of his disciples went back; and walked no more with him.”

  • This is after all what has happened regardless that it is transmitted as satire.

    Liberalism deserves only to be held in loathing, disdain and contempt, treated solely with the laughing and ridicule that we express towards the Nazis while watching reruns of Hogan’s Heroes on TV.

Standing Alone Except for Christ

Saturday, April 12, AD 2014

Hattip to commenter Phillip.  Well, I think we can now say that a pattern has been established in regard to how Catholics who have the temerity to preach Catholic doctrine on sex and marriage at ostensibly Catholic schools are going to be treated by the forces of tolerance and the cowards who run the schools.  Father Z gives us the details:



Another ‘c’atholic High School blows up when they hear the truth about Catholic teaching.

Yah… I want to be part of a Church in which high school students determine our morality.

First, look at The Prout School.

From IndependentRI:

Prout principal will not resign after controversial assembly

SOUTH KINGSTOWN — Kathleen Schlenz of Peace Dale knew something was wrong when her daughter, Anna, arrived home from school Friday.

The Rev. Francis “Rocky” Hoffman, a priest of Opus Dei, [I know him.] an orthodox division of the Roman Catholic Church, and executive director and radio host of Relevant Radio, a Catholic radio network that broadcasts on 33 stations in 13 states and online, had spoken to a school-wide assembly at The Prout School, where Anna is a junior. The speech was being taped to be broadcast on Relevant Radio at a later date. “She was most upset about the divisive and offensive language regarding divorce, homosexuality and even adoption,” Kathleen Schlenz [Follow her doings all through the piece.  She’s really something.] said. “None of the parents or faculty knew it was being taped to be aired. They were essentially held hostage and told to clap after this man’s responses to questions, even when they didn’t agree with them.” Father Hoffman was on retreat and unavailable for comment before the Independent went to press Wednesday. On April 10, parents received a letter of apology from Principal David Carradini since Friday. [sigh] In the new letter, Carradini announced he would not resign.


“Many have questioned why I did not stop Fr. Hoffman when I sensed things were going badly,” Carradini wrote. “I have offered three explanations to various audiences; the truth is I do not know why I did not stop him:. Though I sensed, and shared, the distress of your daughters and sons, and of the faculty, [and Gaia] I did not see its depth, as I was in the front of the auditorium. I desperately hoped that things might right-end themselves, [?!? Really? Who writes public letters like that?  ] and in that hope I did not stop him. [‘Cause that wouldn’t have added chum to the waters.] Parents who are crisis management professionals have instructed me after the fact in what I ought to have done. I am grateful for their guidance.” [He makes this sound like a school shooting.  Were psychologists called into the school to help students deal with the trauma?]

Students discussed staging protests and pickets in response to the speech. On Monday, fliers that read “Homosexuals are bullied because of apathy. [Good grief.  WHO’S being bullied?] Divorced people are bullied because of apathy. Adoptive children are bullied because of apathy. Are you apathetic?” appeared around the school.  [What the heck did my old friend Fr. Hoffman say?  Did he use… I can hardly bring myself to type this… The ‘S’ Word™?] Several Prout students and alumni tweeted about the matter. “Prout is now an unvibrant uncatholic community,” one said. [They are figuring that out?] “All the good things built up by The Prout School today just came crashing down around us with that assembly,” read another.  [The party’s over, it seems.  It all came crashing down.  Was what Fr. Hoffman said as divisive and as bullying as this?  Rom. 1:26-28, “For this reason God gave them over to degrading passions; for their women exchanged the natural function for that which is unnatural, and in the same way also the men abandoned the natural function of the woman and burned in their desire toward one another, men with men committing indecent acts and receiving in their own persons the due penalty of their error. And just as they did not see fit to acknowledge God any longer, God gave them over to a depraved mind, to do those things which are not proper.”] Posts to Hoffman’s Facebook page appeared briefly, but were removed. In an email to Carradini, Kathleen Schlenz characterized Hoffman’s comments as “cruel, condemnatory, and wholly un-Christian.” [Could he have been harsher than the Bible? Lev 20:13: “If a man lies with a male as with a woman, both of them have committed an abomination.”  I’m just saying…] Beginning Friday, a number of parents, including Schlenz, went to Carradini with questions: Why was Hoffman asked to speak? Who approved it? Was he paid? Would the speech be aired?  [Could his talk have been more challenging than Matthew 5:32 “But I say to you that every one who divorces his wife, except on the ground of unchastity, makes her an adulteress; and whoever marries a divorced woman commits adultery.”] Carradini referred a request for comment to the Diocese of Providence. [This is Bp. Tobin’s diocese, thanks be to God.] Friday evening, parents received an email from the school. “My intention in inviting him here was to have a priest articulate Church teaching in a manner that was pastorally appropriate, doctrinally sound, and deeply respectful of the trust the students showed in bringing these questions forward for answer. My prior knowledge of Fr. Hoffman and his program gave every reason to expect this outcome,” Carradini wrote. “My expectations, and those of the faculty and staff, were not met, and for that I am deeply sorry. Several of the answers provided were not entirely representative of the full breadth of Church teaching on a number of complex and sensitive issues. [Oh?  What did he omit?] Several members of the student body, faculty, and staff – including me – were personally offended by his manner of presentation.”  [It may be that the little darlings heard it for the first time and had a reaction.] In the email, Carradini said he would “address these matters with the entire school and to apologize for the offenses caused.”  [What did Fr. Hoffman say that was so horrible?  Was it anything like what St. Paul said?  1 Cor 6:9-10: “Do you not know that the unrighteous will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived; neither the immoral, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor sexual perverts,  nor thieves, nor the greedy, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor robbers will inherit the kingdom of God.”] That occurred Monday, in another school-wide assembly, during which school chaplain Rev. Joseph Upton, offered an address with a more welcoming message. [?] “You can imagine how very upset I was on Friday morning as I watched and heard Fr. Rocky’s presentation unfold,” [I am still waiting for a quote… in or out of context… so that we can know what happened?] Upton said, according to an email regarding Hoffman’s address sent to parents. “We know that many young people in particular struggle with participation in the life of the Church. And now a presentation seemed to provide more of a reason to give up on the Church? I was angry and I was sad.” [Oooooo.] Approximately 50 parents appeared at the assembly uninvited and met with Carradini after it finished. Schlenz was among them. When she reached Carradini by phone Saturday, she asked what he was doing to ensure the speech would not be broadcast and was told he had spoken to a board member of Relevant Radio.  [So that no one can know what Father really said?  What does that sound like to you?  She doesn’t want people to know the truth.]


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42 Responses to Standing Alone Except for Christ

  • Everything about this sounds like it is from the CCHS playbook; no online petition.
    From the Prout website:

    – “In the Catholic tradition, Prout is committed to empowering (sic) students to grow intellectually, spiritually and socially in an atmosphere of Christian giving.”
    – “We encourage students… into a lifelong personal relationship with Jesus as a role model, friend and guide.”
    – “In 1981 Prout became a diocesan high school.”
    – “Mass (is) celebrated as a community about once a month and on holy days.”
    (Note: this is presented as a highlight of the spiritual aspect of the school. Daily Mass (if offered) was not listed as a highlight.)
    – Another spiritual highlight is “The Sacrament of Reconciliation (offered) during Advent and Lent.”
    (Note: on another page, Fr Upton offers to Schedule the sacrament to anyone who is interested.)
    – Fr Upton was ordained in 2010.
    The newspaper quoted the diocesan spokesman: “Father Rocky’s responses to a number of particularly sensative topics were disappointing and PASTORALLY INSENSITIVE (emphasis added) to church teachings.”

  • I think one factor in these increasing incidents is the disappearance of SIN.
    In part, the diminished significance of SIN in our society today can be attributed to the widespread growth of the culture of victimhood (especially in terms of women).
    Another possible factor in the marginalization of sin is a greater acceptance of other beliefs. I received a letter in the mail today from a Protestant Rescue Mission that proclaimed “When Christ died on the cross and rose from the dead, our wounds were healed and our SINS were foregiven.”
    With that kind of thinking, it should not be a surprise that today’s young people have little concept of sin. Jesus put down his credit card and is picking up the tab. So order whatever you want because it’s been paid for.
    This is obviously incorrect (but try to tell them otherwise and lookout! Here comes the bus.)

  • The phrase Catholic left contains mutually exclusive words. One cannot be leftist and still be authentically Catholic.

  • Jesus – role model, friend and guide.
    Horse manure!
    Jesus – Lord, Saviour. And King! Creator and Judge! The man on that white horse from whose mouth comes the sword of truth.
    I hate liberalism.

  • Horse manure, Paul? Perhaps on two of the three, but not this: “No longer do I call you slaves, for the slave does not know what his master is doing; but I have called you friends, for all things that I have heard from My Father I have made known to you.”

    Of course, friendship has to be nurtured on both sides. The only side of the friendship on which we may be certain is Jesus’. It is presumption to be certain that any of us, even in a high school, nurture our friendship well.

  • It really irks me that the principal was so quick with an apology. Since the talk was recorded I’d like to see a transcript, especially if there were questions and answers outside of the prepared script.

    BTW, the parents may have one legitimate complaint. Certain recordings in front of a school audience by an outside agency require parental wavers for each student. I can’t imagine that an audio with just applause would require wavers, but a video playback that pans the audience might. It’s likely that Fr. Hoffman would be careful here, but look to some parents to complain anyway.

    “He makes this sound like a school shooting”. Heck, even school shootings don’t sound like school shootings. We always use the weak-kneed “tragedy” rather than the more accurate “atrocity”.

    Is this just the usual anti-Opus Dei BS?

  • I had feared that this would come from outside the Church. I didn’t realize how deeply we have been co-opted. Anguish!
    Isaiah 22
    3 Your rulers have all fled together;
    they were captured without the use of a bow.*
    All of you who were found were captured, though they had fled far away.
    4 Therefore I said: Look away from me,
    let me weep bitter tears; do not try to comfort me for the destruction of my beloved people.

  • You have a point, TomD. In true friendship, one respects the other. These freaking liberal nit wit parents and their spoiled little brats have ZERO respect for Jesus Christ and His words about marriage and adultery. They want a best buddy who will confirm them in their sin, who will say, “I luv you, it’s OK for you to do whatever you want.” A real friend doesn’t do that. A real friend says, “Stop! If you continue, you will kill yourself.” But that is NOT the message these reprobate hypocritical Katholycks want. They want “peace and luv, man!” Hippified godless rebellious whelps, the lot of them, no better than me in my dope smoking, heroin using days (which reminds me that I should work out my salvation in fear and trembling as the Apostle admonishes).

    Erit enim tempus, cum sanam doctrinam non sustinebunt, sed ad sua desideria coacervabunt sibi magistros prurientes auribus, et a veritate quidem auditum avertent, ad fabulas autem convertentur.

    Ad Timotheum Epistula II Sancti Pauli Apostoli, Caput IV, Versus III per IV

  • “They want a best buddy who will confirm them in their sin”
    Heh. Not a chalice with consecrated wine but a bottle of beer.

  • I don’t get it. If the Headmaster won’t resign, why’d he apologize in the first place? Seems to me he ought either resign, to show his apology is sincere, or be fired for craveness.

  • What do you expect when these very same bishops treat opposition to amnesty for illegal aliens as a violation of religious liberty ala Fortnight for Freedom (or as more accurately stated Operation Defining Religious Liberty Down)? And they pander to the same pro-illegal immigration and anti-death penalty activists who are part of the same leftist machine that is foisting sexual promiscuity on children.

    No Bishop Jugis didn’t set any precedent. That precedent was set long before Bishop Jugis.

  • Could one ever imagine? Basically being accused of hate speech while teaching church doctrine.

    Recently in Canada a pastor was detained prior to entering the Country to give a talk on Christian morals. His material was found to be “abusive.”

    Exciting times huh?

    “If American Catholics do not return to the faith and partake of the Sacraments worthily the future of the Church in America is to resemble the 1st century Christendom.” (paraphrasing)
    Fr. John Hardon d.2000

    Q: Are you prepared to stand up for the Truth when your day of testimony arrives?
    Happy Palm Sunday TAC.

  • fRED quoted, “When Christ died on the cross and rose from the dead, our wounds were healed and our SINS were foregiven.”
    St Paul says, “being justified as a gift by His grace through the redemption which is in Christ Jesus; whom God displayed publicly as a propitiation in His blood through faith. This was to demonstrate His righteousness, because in the forbearance of God He passed over the sins previously committed; for the demonstration, I say, of His righteousness at the present time, so that He would be just and the justifier of the one who has faith in Jesus.…” (Rom 3:24-26)

  • BTW, the parents may have one legitimate complaint. Certain recordings in front of a school audience by an outside agency require parental wavers for each student. I can’t imagine that an audio with just applause would require wavers, but a video playback that pans the audience might. It’s likely that Fr. Hoffman would be careful here, but look to some parents to complain anyway

    The contention that the students were instructed to applaud for the recording came from a complaining parent informed by her complaining daughter. The dame also described their attendance at a school assembly (common as dirt in secondary education) as being ‘held hostage’. Sorry, just do not trust this broad.

    The weasel who issued the statement quoted by “fRED” is the superintendent of Catholic schools for the diocese of Providence. The bishop needs to send pink slips to the principal and his immediate superior and tell the complaining parents to get lost. Of course, nothing will happen.

  • Expect to see much more of this type of agitprop by the forces of the Catholic Left.

    “Catholic Left” would be Peter Steinfels or John Noonan. These people are just institutional tapeworms.

  • It seems to me that it is obvious that the human aspect of religious management in the USA (and the West?) has failed. However, perhaps the more important question to ask as a result of these failures is: what is the Holy Spirit telling us?
    Modern RC (and Protestants too) essentially gravitate towards “works” in regards to salvation (e.g., ACCEPT Jesus as a personal savior; say the Jesus prayer; HAVE faith and BELIEVE). We are looking for ACTIONs. But the NT says these actions are more on the “Fruits” side of things.
    As I mentioned in another post, I am currently reading/studying, “Acts of Apostles.” This morning I read about Lydia, a worshiper of God. “The Lord opened her heart to give heed to what was said by Paul” [16:14]. One of my resources is notes by Msgr Charles Pope (Washington, DC). His commentary on this verse notes that “true conversion..is always the work of the Holy Spirit who is the mover of human hearts. Humility demands that we acknowledge this as a work of God and not glory in it as though it is our own doing. Further, we must not lose heart. We must understand that the Holy Spirit goes before us to prepare hearts and minds. If the Word of God is received, it will be a work of God.”
    Given the role of God and the Holy Spirit, as well as our own “free will,” what are we to make of these recent incidents of failure in the what we assumed were bastions of Catholicism? Perhaps we are being called to look to ACTS and the letters of Paul to better understand how God is calling us. Certainly Paul encountered many such challenges and setbacks as we are seeing today.
    If the Holy Spirit is going before us, then most certainly we should not despair in these “setbacks.” What is the Holy Spirit calling you and me to do?

  • 2nd Timothy 1:7 “For God did not give us a Spirit of fearfulness; but of power and love and discipline.”

    Come Holy Spirit and enlighten the faithful. Give courage to persons in leadership roles, especially those in your Catholic schools.

  • Is Liberalism a Sin?
    Victor R. Claveau, MJ

    It has been estimated that over 130 million Americans have no religious affiliation. From this population of heretics and pagans exudes an atmosphere filled with ideas poisonous to Christian life. To live among this population requires energy and a robust religious constitution.
    It is natural that infidelity would find public expression. Our media is saturated with non-Christian dogmatism. We cannot escape from this opposing spirit. It is constantly shoved in our faces, and enters through both eye and ear. It sooths and flatters; hates and curses, now threatens and now praises. However, it is most dangerous when it comes to us under the guise of “liberality.”
    On the principle that every person may interpret the Scriptures according to the dictates of private judgment, it gives birth to endless contradictions and differences. Required by the law of its own impotence, because of the lack of any decisive authoritarian voice in matters of faith, it is forced to recognize as valid and orthodox any belief that springs from the exercise of private judgment. Therefore it arrives at the conclusion that one creed is as good as another, and attempts to cloak this conclusion under the appearance of liberty of conscience. The individual interprets as he pleases, rejecting or accepting what he chooses. This is popularly called freedom of conscience. If one creed is as good as another, then no creed is as good as any.
    Religion is the bond, which unites us to God, the alpha and omega of all good. Infidelity, breaks the bond, which binds men to God, and seeks to build a human society founded on the principle of man’s independence.
    In the assumption of the absolute sovereignty of the individual, that is, his entire independence from God, we find the common source of all evil.
    Dogma is the authoritative declaration of revealed truth, or a truth founded upon revelation. This logically implies the obedient acceptance of the dogma on the part of the individual and of society. Liberalism refuses to acknowledge this rational obedience and denies the authority. It asserts the sovereignty of the individual and the social reason, and enthrones Rationalism in the seat of authority. It knows no dogma except the dogma of self-assertion. Hence, it is radical and fundamental heresy, the rebellion of human intellect against God.
    Liberalism denies the absolute jurisdiction of God over individuals and society. It also denies the necessity of divine revelation and the obligation of every person to accept that revelation under pain of eternal damnation. In short, Liberalism sets itself up as the measure and rule of faith, and, so, shuts out revelation altogether. It denies everything which itself does not proclaim. It negates everything it does not affirm. Liberalism is the radical and universal denial of all divine truth and Christian dogma, and the supreme rebellion against the authority of God. With the Evil One, its maxim is: “I will not serve.”
    Liberalism in the order of ideas is absolute error; in the order of facts, it is absolute disorder. It is therefore, in both cases a very serious and deadly sin, for sin is the rebellion against God in thought or deed, the elevation of the creature in the place of the creator.

  • “Error may flourish for a time, but truth will prevail in the end. The only effect of error ultimately is to promote truth. (John Henry Newman, Present position of Catholics in England).

    “For (magna est veritas er praevalebit) great is truth, and shall prevail.” (Thomas Brooks, The Crown and Glory of Christianity, 1622, p. 407).

    “The worst enemy of truth and freedom in our society is the compact majority. Yes, the damned, compact, liberal majority.” (Hendrik Ibsen, 1828-1906, An Enemy of the People, 1882, Act 4).

    There are “those who are to perish, because they refused to love the truth and so be saved.” (2 Thess. 2:10).

    “Jesus then said to the Jews who had believed in him, “If you continue in my word, you are truly my disciples, and you will know the truth, and the truth will make you free.” (John 8:31-32).

    SAINT AUGUSTINE, Confes. X, xxiii, 33: “In fact, the blessed life consists in the joy that comes from the truth, since this joy comes from You who are Truth, God my light, salvation of my face, my God”.

    “It is actually natural to man to strive for knowledge of the truth”. PL 32, 793-794. Cf. SAINT THOMAS AQUINAS, De Malo, IX, 1

    We must continue the search for truth and for meaning throughout our lives, since “the human spirit must be cultivated in such a way that there results a growth in its ability to wonder, to understand, to contemplate, to make personal judgments, and to develop a religious, moral, and social sense.” (VATICAN COUNCIL II, Pastoral Constitution on the Church in the Modern World Gaudium et Spes, n. 59: AAS 58 (1966), p. 1080.)

  • Moderation in all things is taught throughout the Bible old and New Testament. However, there is a caveat to that statement, and that is, that there can be no moderation in one’s love of God or love of truth. Scripture states, “I know your works: you are neither cold nor hot. Would that you were cold or hot! So, because you are lukewarm, and neither cold nor hot, I will spew you out of my mouth” (Rev. 3:15-17). Truth cannot be subject to relativism and subjectivism.
    Some consider Christian faith intolerant, simply because Christians affirm dogmas and hold objective moral norms rather than acquiescing in religious indifferentism and moral subjectivism. But every worldview and way of life logically excludes alternatives. Relativists and subjectivists also have a definite worldview and way of life; they too reject every position incompatible with their own. True tolerance is not indifferentism and subjectivism, but respect for those who hold another worldview and way of life. Tolerance is readiness to presume good will in others and to put up with their conscientious behavior insofar as one’s own conscience permits.
    Relativism and subjectivism also can be closed-minded. Relativists and subjectivists constantly talk about civility and moderation, but they are not immune from intolerance and fanaticism. Indeed, they are especially tempted to be arbitrary and self-righteous, precisely because they acknowledge neither a higher reality to which all realistic people must submit nor an objective moral standard by which all conscientious people must criticize themselves. Unable to call on their opponents to submit to principles which any reasonable person should accept (their views exclude such principles), relativists and subjectivists inevitably will be tempted to use non-rational methods–manipulation and even suppression–in order to prevail.
    “To live well is nothing other than to love God with all ones heart, with all ones soul and with all ones efforts; from this it comes about that love is kept whole and uncorrupted (through temperance). No misfortune can disturb it (and this is fortitude). It obeys only [God] (and this is justice), and is careful in discerning things, so as not to be surprised by deceit or trickery (and this is prudence)” (St. Augustine, De Moribus eccl. 1, 25, 46: PL 32, 1330-1331).

  • Victor R. Claveau.
    Simply and beautifully written.
    Thank you for your faith.
    Learning…always learning. Peace.

  • Beautifully written, all accepted truth; Thank you very much Victor Claveau. Yes, love is the answer, and truth will prevail in the end.
    Still, I say again with Isaiah:
    4 Therefore I said: Look away from me,
    let me weep bitter tears; do not try to comfort me for the destruction of my beloved people.

  • Wow! I am shocked that anything Father Rocky said would be found to be offensive. I am a listener to Relevant Radio and find that he is kind and patient in his instruction.

    Sadly, this is the way the liberals behave in all aspects of life. They are always crying “bully” but don’t realize that by their very actions they are the bullies.

  • The immutable, the ineffable, the infinite Supreme Sovereign Being, Perfect God cannot and does not change. Some people try to improve on perfection of the Supreme Sovereign Being.


    God does not change. The saints in heaven, the martyrs, do not change. They are forever fixed in heaven and have already refused to change to save their lives. The saints and martyrs have refused to forfeit their souls, their immortal human souls.
    The souls in purgatory, those almost saints who have missed eternal damnation by the skin of their teeth would not take another chance on losing.
    The militant, those souls in battle, fighting for their blessedness against the forces of evil, here on earth, constantly run the risk of losing to the devil the gift of eternal happiness.

    God does not change, not in the triumph of the Beatific Vision, not in the suffering of purgatory. Man can only change in his desire to serve God to attain the Beatific Vision and avoid the pains of hell. Man can only revolt against God, the unchangeable God, while here on earth.
    Ignorance is an opinion upon which no truth may rest.

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  • Victor R Claveau wrote, “But every worldview and way of life logically excludes alternatives.”

    Is that true? “You Spartans live your lives in one way, according to the laws of Lycurgus; we Athenians arrange our lives in a different way, according to the laws of Solon.” Is it clear that Spartans and Athenians actually disagree? Even if they do, what would count as resolving their disagreements, since there is no question here of agreeing on a description of anything?

    Certainly, they might come to agree on the best way to arrange their lives, but that would represent a change in customs, not coming to agree about a shared object of enquiry. Or would it?

    As Miss Anscombe pointed out in her 1958 paper, Modern Moral Philosophy, to resolve that question, “ an explanation is required how an unjust man is a bad man, or an unjust action a bad one… For the proof that an unjust man is a bad man would require a positive account of justice as a ‘virtue.’” That, I believe, is the question on which, as apologists, we need to concentrate our attention.

  • Past time for bishops to show up once per year at each Catholic high school and in front of an assembly of all the students and faculty preach the teaching of Jesus’s Church about sexuality, sex, and marriage. Do it clearly and firmly, no mush-mouth.

    Then let the goats and tares self-identify.

  • Wow. I just read all of your posts. Do you all have bombs strapped to you as well?

  • I see you screen out all dissenting opinion. I’m not surprised.

  • “Wow. I just read all of your posts. Do you all have bombs strapped to you as well?”

    Anything intelligent to contribute or are you just a drive by troll?

  • “I see you screen out all dissenting opinion. I’m not surprised.”

    Anyone who has not posted before is automatically put into moderation. Once the initial comment is approved the moderation is lifted. The fact that I let your inane first comment by demonstrates how effectively we “screen out all dissent”.

  • Sorry for the jumping the gun. I didn’t know about the “moderation”. It doesn’t seem like there is anything moderate about these comments. All I’m saying is that from what I have read in these here comments, if I had to choose between these folks here and the Taliban, my intelligence would require that it come down to a coin toss.

  • It would have been more merciful to leave D in moderation.

    That whole “open your mouth and prove it to the world” thing, you know?

  • “if I had to choose between these folks here and the Taliban, my intelligence would require that it come down to a coin toss.”

    Explain in detail how anyone who comments or posts here resembles the Taliban, unless you simply lump anyone who believes in God with the Taliban or anyone who disagrees with you with the Taliban.

  • D: I’ve been under “moderation” for years. It helps with my keyboard Tourrettes’ Syndrome.

    Is there substance behind your insult?

    Is everybody that doesn’t toe your line worse than Hitler? Or, just Christians?

  • Mac,

    Seems as if D believes opposing Obamacare is equivalent to executing women rape victims . . . [sigh]

  • D is one of those special little snowflakes whose equilibrium can’t process Catholics or Christians who think differently than he/she does without assigning lazy stereotypes borrowed from fellow snowflakes.

    However, I have every confidence D would drop the sneer and be the soul of polite charity on an actual Taliban-supporting website.

    We know what you are D–don’t let the door hit you on the way out.

  • I’m halfway out the door at this point, but:

    Please note that this sort of protest has become a pattern. If you don’t think this isn’t being coordinated, I don’t know what to tell you. If Catholic schools are simply going to be parrots of the zeitgeist, they are worse than useless: they are pernicious. If supposed paladins of orthodoxy like Jugis and Tobin are going to stand idly by, then the game is over.

  • “then the game is over.”

    If 2000 years of the history of the Church has taught me anything Dale, it is that the game is never over as far as the Catholic Church is concerned, no matter the follies without and within the Church.

  • There’s no promise that the Church will survive in any particular locale.

  • True, but the Church will endure and doubtless flourish over time globally, as she has met and surmounted what seemed to be hopeless challenges from within and without down through the centuries. If I lost my faith, God forbid, and looked at the Church purely as a historian, I would make the very same prediction.

  • Marvel not that “licentiousness” masquerades as “liberalism”.

    Did St. Paul not sum it up well when he said:

    1 Corinthians 6:12-20

    King James Version (KJV)

    12 All things are lawful unto me, but all things are not expedient: all things are lawful for me, but I will not be brought under the power of any.

    13 Meats for the belly, and the belly for meats: but God shall destroy both it and them. Now the body is not for fornication, but for the Lord; and the Lord for the body.

    14 And God hath both raised up the Lord, and will also raise up us by his own power.

    15 Know ye not that your bodies are the members of Christ? shall I then take the members of Christ, and make them the members of an harlot? God forbid.

    16 What? know ye not that he which is joined to an harlot is one body? for two, saith he, shall be one flesh.

    17 But he that is joined unto the Lord is one spirit.

    18 Flee fornication. Every sin that a man doeth is without the body; but he that committeth fornication sinneth against his own body.

    19 What? know ye not that your body is the temple of the Holy Ghost which is in you, which ye have of God, and ye are not your own?

    20 For ye are bought with a price: therefore glorify God in your body, and in your spirit, which are God’s.

    Oh, what tribulation comes upon us when reprobates hold the purse-strings.

Ryan and the Catholic Left

Tuesday, August 21, AD 2012




The reaction of the Catholic Left in this country to Paul Ryan has been completely predictable.  This is a movement, with honorable exceptions, that long ago fell into lockstep behind the “abortion now, abortion forever” policy of the Democrat party.  When a pro-life Catholic like Paul Ryan arises they must strive, by any means necessary, to drag him down to their level as dissenters against basic Catholic teaching.  Bill McGurn in the Wall Street Journal has a brilliant column looking at this phenomenon:

Say this for the liberal impulse in American Catholicism: In its day, it leavened the faith. Against the church’s tendencies to clericalism, it promoted the contributions of the laity. Against suspicions in Rome, it championed the American experiment. In particular, the liberal impulse advanced the idea of religious liberty for all that would ultimately triumph in the 1960s at the Second Vatican Council.

No longer, alas. Today the liberal impulse in American Catholic life has substituted political for religious orthodoxy. In retrospect, the turning point is easy to spot: liberal Catholicism’s acquiescence in the Democratic Party’s drift toward supporting abortion at a time when church leaders had the influence to stop it.

So here we are in 2012, when all but one of the active senators and representatives who are members of the official Catholics for Obama campaign team enjoy a 100% approval rating from NARAL Pro-Choice America.

This fundamental dissent from a basic church teaching is now a fact of modern Democratic Catholic life. The result for our politics is an extraordinary campaign, in the 10 days since Paul Ryan became the Republican candidate for vice president, by those on the Catholic left to strike a moral equivalence between Mr. Ryan’s reform budget and Democratic Catholic support for the party’s absolutist position on abortion.

Thus the column in the National Catholic Reporter characterizing Mr. Ryan as a “champion of dissent” regarding the church’s social teaching. Or the headline at the website Jezebel, “Badass Nun Says Paul Ryan is a Bad Catholic.” When this sort of thing seeps into the mainstream, it takes the form of the recent article in the Washington Post that found moral parallels between the two vice-presidential candidates: Mr. Ryan is a dissenter from “social justice,” while Vice President Joe Biden, also Catholic, dissents on issues such as same-sex marriage and abortion.


Mr. Ryan’s own bishop, the Most Rev. Robert C. Morlino, addressed the subject with his most recent column in the diocesan paper for Madison, Wis. The church, he wrote, regards abortion as an “intrinsic evil” (meaning always and everywhere wrong, regardless of circumstances). In sharp contrast, he said, on issues such as how best to create jobs or help the poor, “there can be difference according to how best to follow the principles which the church offers.”

“I’m not endorsing Paul Ryan,” the bishop told me later by phone. “People are free to disagree with him, and disagree vehemently. But it’s wrong to suggest that his views somehow make him a bad Catholic.”

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71 Responses to Ryan and the Catholic Left

  • Why would anyone waste eyesight on abortion catholics’ calumnies?

    If it weren’t for calumny, detraction, and distortion, they would have nothing.

  • The thing that I find most discouraging is the priests who are in the democrat party. I was shocked to find such a thing when we recently moved to Maryland. I wrote to one of them who proudly stated his party affiliation in his homily. I pretty much tried to say that it’s confusing to children when us moms try to explain that democrats stand against the church for things like abortion, gay marriage, etc., then to hear a priest say he’s a democrat. His reply was that he’s proud to be pro-life AND pro-social justice, then he went on to bash republicans (I never told him my party affiliation, so I could be an independent for all he knows) and then say that I re-affirmed his convictions to stand with the democrat party. This was almost a year ago. I was so upset that I threw out his letter, but I really wish I kept it. Pray for the souls of our priests who put politics ahead of Christ, and don’t understand about the company you keep. People can say that Jesus hung out with sinners, but He was human AND Divine, so He couldn’t be swayed toward evil.

  • I just couldn’t bear to watch more than a minute and a half of the liberal idiocy in the 1st video. BTW, subsidium means re-enforcement or relief from the rear; it does not mean help from government above.

    And these people are students of higher education? Thank God I learned on the job in a nuclear submarine at test depth!

  • The thing that I find most discouraging is the priests who are in the democrat party.

    Even people drawn from the most sophisticated component of the public often prove almost incapable of regarding the opposition as is. They see caricatures and only caricatures. Thus the Republican Party – an ominibus of people with interests and preferences which place them at odds with the dominant mode within the Democratic Party, the education sector, the legal profession, and the media – is transmogrified in their mind as the electoral vehicle of late 19th century robber barons.

    And, of course, you get people in all denominations who went into the ministry for the wrong reasons – the social workers and aspirant den mothers.

  • “Why would anyone waste eyesight on abortion catholics’ calumnies?”

    Unfortunately, there are the calumnies of the pure Catholics to deal with.

  • I’m not the Catholic Left. I’m just poor and Catholic.

  • The GOP nominee supports intrinsic evil. Not only that, he is a member of a blasphemous religion, a religion that he is showcasing at the convention.

    You’ve all drunk the Kool-Aid. The fact is that America did not survive the first four years of Obama. That is the reality of the situation. Piling on with blasphemy while attacking the bishops because they defend the preferential option, while claiming you are “more Catholic” than the Catholic Left? God, help you.

  • There is more to Catholic than mouthing the word. Catholic is living one’s life through and with and in Jesus Christ. Abortion, “Suffer the little children to come unto me.” Same sex marriage: “It was not so from the beginning”. Prayer ban: “The Father and I are ONE.” Catholics who would bother to destroy the only honest, pro-life candidate America has, Paul Ryan, are “useful idiots”, in the words of Lenin, and how aptly they are described supporting the communist agenda in the White House.

    The Declaration of Independence tells us to rely on Divine Providence. Doing the right thing, respecting “the laws of nature and nature’s God”, peaceably assembling before God with the accent on peaceably, (not “occupy Chick-Fil-A” with a demonstration of violating God’s will for human marriage,) honoring almighty God, cherishing life created equal by “their Creator”, and trusting in God the way our money tells us: “IN GOD WE TRUST”, will bring us back to where harmony begins, where the hymn of the universe is heard in the mountains and danced in the water and proclaimed in the air. Let man be free. FREEDOM

  • Lisa Graas says:
    Tuesday, August 21, 2012 A.D. at 9:58am
    The GOP nominee supports intrinsic evil. Not only that, he is a member of a blasphemous religion, a religion that he is showcasing at the convention.

    You’ve all drunk the Kool-Aid. The fact is that America did not survive the first four years of Obama. That is the reality of the situation. Piling on with blasphemy while attacking the bishops because they defend the preferential option, while claiming you are “more Catholic” than the Catholic Left? God, help you.

    Yes, Lisa, God does help us. America has not survived the prayer ban, ostracizing “their Creator” and His unalienable rights from the public square, from every human mind, body, and immortal soul. The name of the game is save the human soul from extinction in the political arena. The human body will follow. Are you in?

  • @AD: A++: ” . . . – social workers and aspirant den mothers.”

    Elsewhere I saw someone call them (Abortion catholics/cathi-Liberals) the “democrat party pretending to pray.”

    My “point” (not the one on my head!) is that these brutes are democrats first and Catholics somewhere farther down in their “priority lists.”

    It’s in the Gospels (which they subvert to support their political prejudices). One cannot serve two masters.

  • “You’ve all drunk the Kool-Aid. The fact is that America did not survive the first four years of Obama. That is the reality of the situation. Piling on with blasphemy while attacking the bishops because they defend the preferential option, while claiming you are “more Catholic” than the Catholic Left? God, help you.”

    Your ardent support of Santorum in the primaries Lisa and your current position are logically inconsistent. You have become unhinged and I would very much appreciate it if you would no longer comment on my threads on this blog.

  • There at least two bishops with the courage to defend Ryan against the bogus charge from the Catholic left (which include several bishops) his own Bishop Morlino and Archbishop Sam Aquila of Denver:



  • Taxes belong to the taxpayer even as the taxes are administered by the administration. The taxes rightfully belong to the people first. Put it on the ballot. The USCCB is begging from the wrong people. So are the protestors in the video. It is the people in the pews who fund charity and the government. Remove the funding from the government and all evildoers will leave. Evildoers are too cheap to work for the common good probono. Michael Newdow, the atheist, the American Civil Liberites Union removing God from the heart and soul of America are all funded by the taxpayers who are left in the dustbin by them. All legal fees for civil rights cases are paid for by the citizens’ taxes, citizens who have literally been skrewed over with ssm and abortion, the HHS mandate, Obama’s 923 Executive Orders usurping unauthorized power and property that is not Obama’s and you name it. FREEDOM

  • I deleted your last comment Lisa. You no longer may comment on my threads.

  • We have to be really careful about denouncing the Catholic left. We should be investing our effort into instructing them. Jesus’s last prayer at the Last Supper was for unity. If fellow Catholics can’t demonstrate unity in spite of their political differences, what chance does the country as a whole have?

    One thing we can do to comfort the Catholic left is to distance ourselves from the conspiracy nuts and the libertines. Like it or not, along with the fiscal conservative Tea Partiers, the socially decadent and those who oppose charity on principle have found their way into the more mainstream conversation. There are forces on the right who oppose religion and put property rights over human rights. Not everyone on the right – that’s the lie that the press will repeat. But there is an element on the right that is that way. It’s tactically intelligent as well as ideologically consistent for the right to follow Buckley on this and challenge the anti-religious right.

    As a side note, Lisa mentioned Mitt’s Mormonism. This is the first time in our history that neither ticket put forward a mainstream Protestant. That’s interesting.

  • A few days ago, commenters raised the example of Chile’s economic growth, development and prosperity.

    Herein I neither fabricate nor consult, ex cathedra, the infallible GU Faculty.

    From March 2, 2010: WSJ: “How Milton Friedman Saved Chile” Bret Stephens –

    In 1973, the year the proto-Chavista government of Salvador Allende was overthrown by Gen. Augusto Pinochet, Chile was an economic shambles. Inflation topped out at an annual rate of 1000%, foreign-currency reserves were totally depleted, and per capita GDP was roughly that of Peru and well below Argentina’s.

    Chile had intellectual capital, thanks to an exchange program between its Catholic University and the economics department of the University of Chicago, then Friedman’s academic home. Even before the 1973 coup, several of Chile’s “Chicago Boys” had drafted a set of policy proposals which amounted to an off-the-shelf recipe for economic liberalization: sharp reductions to government spending and the money supply; privatization of state-owned companies; the elimination of obstacles to free enterprise and foreign investment, and so on.

    As for Chile, Pinochet appointed a succession of Chicago Boys to senior economic posts. By 1990, the year he ceded power, per capita GDP had risen by 40% (in 2005 dollars) even as Peru and Argentina stagnated. Pinochet’s democratic successors—all of them nominally left-of-center—only deepened the liberalization drive. Result: Chileans have become South America’s richest people. They have the continent’s lowest level of corruption, the lowest infant-mortality rate, and the lowest number of people living below the poverty line.

    And, please God, in 25 years, let someone write a newspaper or magazine article entitled, “How Paul Ryan Saved the United States of America.”

  • I believe that the U.S. Constitution forbids a “religion test” for candidates. A candidate’s religion, or how the candidate responds to the gift of Faith from God, (some atheists say that they have not been given a gift of Faith, but that impugn’s God’s veracity and is false witness in a court of law) be it Mormonism, Catholicism and/or Protestantism may not be used in a political way to improve or disenfranchise the candidate. The candidates’ sovereign personhood endowed at conception by “their Creator” is the defining charachteristic. Obama does not believe that he is a sovereign person from conception, but that his citizenship gives him sovereign personhood. Ignorance of the law is no excuse.

  • In addition to Morlino and Aquila, Cardinal Dolan also defended Ryan in an interview with Kathryn Lopez, saying, in essence, that although he disagreed with Ryan on specific budget items, Ryan was free to disagree with him on those issues and remain a Catholic in good standing.

    As for “drinking the Romney Kool-Aid”, I sure as heck haven’t (and I’m not altogether sure what “drinking the Kool-Aid” has to do with a thread about the calumnious assault by the Catholic left – and by some prominent folks on the “pox-on-both-your-houses” Catholic right, of whom I count myself a member – on Ryan’s Catholic bona fides). No Kool-Aid stain on my mouth, as I won’t be supporting the Romney/RYAN ticket.

    But I can nevertheless acknowledge that Paul Ryan is the most serious Catholic outside of Al Smith to ever grace a major-party ticket. And Ryan is every bit the solid Catholic candidate that Rick Santorum is, with the added benefit of never having sold out the pro-life cause to support Arlen Specter.

  • T. Shaw: “And, please God, in 25 years, let someone write a newspaper or magazine article entitled, “How Paul Ryan Saved the United States of America.”
    Several rosaries in Latin.

  • To the fellow who posted a comment as “edmund burk” (sic), yes, I did delete your comment. In my threads no candidate may be attacked for his religious views, as that is too close to simple bigotry for my taste, and because attacks on Romney are not germane to the subject of my post.

  • Thank you, Donald. But I will admit that I am even more unhinged than Lisa Graas, just on the opposite side of the spectrum. Hopefully, that self-knoweldge will help me to keep my freaking fingers off the darn keyboard in my more unhinged moments.

    BTW, I have several friends whom I met at work under a previous employer who are devout Mormons (or LDS members as they like to call themselves). They are hardworking, honest, dedicated, loyal, full of integrity, self-sacrificing individuals – everything we as Catholic Christians ought to be and often are not. Two LDS missionaries – both young women who I think called themselves sisters – visited me at my apartment a few months ago. We spent two or three hours discussing the Bible, the Book of Mormon and related subjects. It was a most excellent and informative discussion, one that I greatly enjoyed. I invited them to stay for supper, but they had to leave. I made them pray the Our Father with me before they left. I have always liked debating my LDS friends in a civil, respectful manner. And if I am again visited by LDS missionaries, I shall shall them the same respect and civil dialogue that they have always and everywhere given me.

    I cannot say the same for the liberal Democrat Catholic left. There is nothing civil, charitable or respectful about them. Any discussion always devolves into a shouting argument. How can it be that with LDS folk whose theology I find completely wrong (and frankly, in some parts, downright weird) I get along so nicely, and with liberal Catholics whose theology shouldn’t be that far off from what I was taught in RCIA, there is nothing but acrimony and argument?

    I am voting for Romney / Ryan in part because Romney IS an LDS member and from my experience I know that LDS members live good, clean, honest, hardworking lives (of course, that doesn’t explain Harry Reid, also an LDS member, but we all got our problem children), whereas I am voting against Obama / Biden in part because Biden is an apostate / heretical faux-Catholic Christian who ought to be excommunicated publicly post haste!

    BTW, when I asked my LDS friends why the Quorum of Twelves didn’t excommunicate Harry Reid, they said for the same reason that the Pope didn’t excommunicate Nancy Pelosi. I had to laugh with them at that one. But I digress.

  • Is it axiomatic that whatever follows: “You’ve all drunk the Kool-Aid” is going to be more kool-aid-y than what precedes it?

  • I flinch every time I hear that expression. People remember what it refers to, right?

  • Not entirely sure but the expression has taken on a life of its own. I’m guessing Manson related or something along those lines?

  • How any thinking Catholic can side with the Republican Party is beyond me. These are the same people that kept Catholics out of jobs, out of restaurants, out of work for years and years. Do you suddenly think you got more palpable to these people because they saw the error of their ways? Come on people, think.

  • Mary Ann,

    For your sake stay away from Louisville/Bardstown Kentucky where most if not all Catholic Priests are liberal and democrat. We are in far greater numbers than you.

  • Thank you Mr. Lambert, this thread needed the comic relief that your appeal to tribal loyalty to the Democrat Party supplies. The idea that some Republicans discriminating against Catholics in the distant past justifies allegiance to a party today that has virtually declared war on the Faith is too risible for words.

  • “These are the same people that kept Catholics out of jobs, out of restaurants, out of work for years and years.”


    “For your sake stay away from Louisville/Bardstown Kentucky where most if not all Catholic Priests are liberal and democrat. We are in far greater numbers than you.”

    Godless liberal Democrat threats. I don’t know about Mary Ann, but I’ll go to an Eastern Orthodox or Orthodox Anglican parish before I visit one of your communities of apostasy, heresy and rebellion.

  • Mr. McClarey,

    The distant path is my lifetime. If you want to call that the distant past, fine. There is a reason that doors and church’s all over the country have closed. It can’t be blamed on 30 years of Liberal Teachings in the Church. Can it?

  • “For your sake stay away from Louisville/Bardstown Kentucky where most if not all Catholic Priests are liberal and democrat. We are in far greater numbers than you.”

    Considering what a red state Kentucky is I would say they have been remarkably ineffective.

  • Mr. Primavera,

    I will pray for you in my rosary tonight.

  • Mr. McClarey,

    Louisville and its environs is anything but red. The Protestants, of course, are red…..but the Catholic areas truely aren’t.

  • “The distant path is my lifetime. If you want to call that the distant past, fine.”

    Delusional is a bad way to go through life Mr. Lambert. I am 55 years old and I have never encountered the slightest prejudice for my Catholicism from my fellow Republicans. Liberal Democrats on the other hand that I have encountered often have expressed great contempt for the Church.

    “There is a reason that doors and church’s all over the country have closed.”

    Non-sequiturs are a poor substitute for argument.

  • Mr. McClarey,

    You may call names all you want. It is your blog. I am simply giving you the truth. I suppose you’ve lived the gifted Catholic life then, having never felt the burn of hatred against the Church. Never encountered KKK members ready to beat you because you are wearing a cross. Is it just because we wanted to stay to ourselves that we developed our own grade and high school sports leagues?

    As far as Churches and the Church

    Has the Conservative part of the Church held sway for the last 30 years? yes

    Have there been massive Church closings in every area in the last 10 years? yes

    Are there significantly less Catholics today than 30 years ago? no.

    So you tell me Mr. McClarey, Why have all the Church’s closed.

  • “Never encountered KKK members ready to beat you because you are wearing a cross.”

    The KKK was a Democrat terrorist organization Mr. Lambert that was long protected by the Democrat party in the South. Did you really not know that?

    “So you tell me Mr. McClarey, Why have all the Church’s closed.”

    What that has to do with your pro-Democrat talking points Mr. Lambert is beyond me, but the main causes of the closing of Catholic churches have been urban Catholics moving to the suburbs and a shortage of priests. The shortage of priests has been largely caused by poor catechisis and the embrace of heterodoxy by too many clergy and laity.

  • What in heck do the democrats’ KKK allies have to do with all this?

    Not only do Liberal, CST catholics aid and advance abortion, they provide material assistance in massive governmental corruption and economic devastation, e.g., FNMA and FHLMC.

    “Government without justice is mass brigandage.” St. Augustine

  • Not unlike many Catholic leftists, Mr. Lambert appears to have problems with the truth. Unless Mr. Lambert is in his 90s, he certainly has no recollection during his lifetime of any “KKK members [i.e. racist members of the Democrat Party] ready to beat [him] because [he was] wearing a cross”.

    And, like Don, I am at a loss as to what Mr. Lambert’s Total Recallesque memories of his past persecution by the Klan has to do with the Republican Party.

  • JA: Truth: Crosses are okay with Protestants. It’s the Crucifix that sets us apart.

    Please lighten up on Lambie. Liberal are stupid.

  • It is time mr lambert, to square our shoulders, grow up and be responsible for our own actions, and not hide our own predilections and interests and grudges behind what a bishop or a priest or a whole neighborhood says..
    We have to listen to our bishops, but we also have to know our faith ourselves.
    We can recognize truth. If we are Catholic we have to be a good Catholic even if nobody in our neighborhood is, even if our priest or our bishop is not.
    Frequent prayers for light and exam of conscience help me quite a bit. Maybe you already do that. Mr. Lambert. i mean no disrespect to you or your priests who support the democratic party which is officially against Church teaching .. but shake the cobwebs out of your thinking. These issues supported by the Democratic candidates (abortion and homosexual marriage) are not difficult to understand.

  • It is time mr lambert, to square our shoulders, grow up and be responsible for our own actions, and not hide our own predilections and interests and grudges behind what a bishop or a priest or a whole neighborhood says..
    We have to listen to our bishops, but we also have to know our faith ourselves.
    We can recognize truth. If we are Catholic we have to be a good Catholic even if nobody in our neighborhood is, even if our priest or our bishop is not.
    Frequent prayers for light and exam of conscience help me quite a bit. Maybe you already do that. Mr. Lambert. i mean no disrespect to you or your priests who support the democratic party which is officially against Church teaching .. but shake the cobwebs out of your thinking. These issues supported by the Democratic candidates (abortion and homosexual marriage) are not difficult to understand.

  • You may call names all you want. It is your blog. I am simply giving you the truth. I suppose you’ve lived the gifted Catholic life then, having never felt the burn of hatred against the Church. Never encountered KKK members ready to beat you because you are wearing a cross. Is it just because we wanted to stay to ourselves that we developed our own grade and high school sports leagues?

    Just to add precision.


    Don’t meet many centenarians, Mr. Lambert.

  • “These are the same people that kept Catholics out of jobs, out of restaurants, out of work for years and years. Do you suddenly think you got more palpable to these people because they saw the error of their ways?”

    If you are going to judge political parties by what they did many years ago, then Democrats are the same people who held slaves, enforced Jim Crow and not so long ago had a former KKK member in Congress, a man who used the term “white n****r” and was excused by the other members of his party. In the present, these are the people who condone leaving living babies in closets to die. And you’re upset because some WASP’s once hung signs on the window saying “No Irish Need Apply?” or didn’t let your great-grandparents eat at a restaurant? At least they were permitted to BE BORN!

    The great laugh here is the secular left hates Catholicism, hates all Christianity with a passion. Read any article about Catholicism in, not only HuffPo and Daily Kos, but one in the NYTimes or Washington Post and read the comments – the outpouring of venom and contempt that comes from the left. (Oh, sure there are still some Jack Chick types on the right – they are a small minority compared to the Bill Maher left.) Do you know how they see you, Mr. Lambert? As a useful idiot, a tool. They’ll tolerate your religion if you agree with them and are willing to overlook that little tiny matter of abortion, but disagree with them on anything, and they’ll turn on you and rend you like a wet paper towel. I know what they are like, since I was once a secular liberal myself. Believe me, you will never be “palatable” to them. They’ll use you to further their war on religious rights, while laughing at you behind your back and making fun of all the “pedophile” priests who foolishly back them.

    Paul Primavera: I have only known a few Mormons in my life, but my experience with them is the same as yours. While I disagree with their religion, I found them hard-working, kind, respectable people, people who were raising their children to be good citizens, people I am not ashamed to call my fellow Americans. Ironically, while Mr. Lambert carefully nurses grudges from bigotry aimed at Catholics decades ago, he himself has no compunction about airing his own prejudices. Is it OK to despise Mormons because it’s a “fashionable” prejudice? Funny, being anti-Catholic was fashionable among the Boston Brahmins a century ago (and still is – in case you don’t know, most of those Harvard and Yale educated snobs now vote Democrat.) You decry old bigotries, but don’t recognize your own. Pot. Kettle. Black, Mr. Lambert.

  • Right sounding words for Chris Lambert and his mentioned cohorts.
    Anzlyne, there has also been the gift from Jesus of the Pope(s) whose words spoken/written regularly through the years and years to benefit and clarify either the misguidance of poor catechetics or inattention to Gospel readings day after day through the years and years to help with growth in holiness and strength to do properly what we can for the Catholic Church.

  • Donna, V.,

    Thank you for the confirmation.

  • I will third the kind words for Mormons. Of the 30-40 Mormons well known to me, all were good people who were solidly committed to living upright lives.

    Mr. Lambert’s tone gives me a feeling he is playing with you. He threw that KKKrappe all over the wall just to see who would stop to admire it. It seems to be just a game to him.

  • “Not unlike many Catholic leftists, Mr. Lambert appears to have problems with the truth.”

    It may be a problem with the truth. Alternatively it may be simple ignorance. I remember one Dem co-worker stating that Lincoln was a Democrat. He couldn’t believe that a Republican would seek to free slaves (they are after all about getting those chains back on as Biden informs us.) Once I pointed it out on the internet he struggled with the reality that struck his ignorance.

    Again, I suspect Mr. Lambert is a victim of the public schools rather than malicious.

  • Finally I don’t feel alone. Why to you think I find it so hard to go to confession? Because of the feelings I have toward the liberals. I’ve been donating and helping the pro life since it started. Church members and even my family, including a nun are canceling my vote. I go to confession and state that my most serious sin is what I feel toward liberals. The priest says call or write to my brother. I do but don’t really feel any better. I have the feeling the priest isn’t really sincere in what he is saying. I have the feeling he is a liberal as well. Perhaps this is the reason so many are leaving the church. I love my faith and would never give it up even I get so discouraged. I now have hope. Ryan has given me that. Finally, the priests and bishops will have to defend our faith. They must lead by example! It is wrong for them to give the Eucharist to Catholics that are not in good standing. It is wrong for them to give communion to Nancy Pelosi, Biden and the many other “catholics” that are mocking our catholic faith. We must all pray that this election will save all people of faith or we will become a country of empty churches as we see in Europe and many other countries.

  • “I now have hope. Ryan has given me that.”

    Put not your trust in princes: In the children of men, in whom there is no salvation. His spirit shall go forth, and he shall return into his earth: in that day all their thoughts shall perish.

    Blessed is he who hath the God of Jacob for his helper, whose hope is in the Lord his God.

    If your hope comes from Paul Ryan, you are being unfaithful to Jesus Christ. I’m quite serious, and this is far more important than who wins the presidency in November.

  • Tom,
    I think you are overreacting. There is hope and there is hope. Scripture is addressing supernatural hope. Just because one craves hope in the worldy sense does not mean that he is deproved of hope in the Scriptural sense. That said, I agree that we should all remember that all men have feet of clay, and one should avoid admiring anyone disproportionately.

  • I stand by what I wrote. Anne says Ryan has given her hope in the Church. This is wrong, and dangerous.

  • “I now have hope. Ryan has given me that. ”

    I daresay Anne that encountering good people who are Catholics has converted more people to the Faith than all the sermons that were ever preached. Don’t be depressed by the clergy and laity who have substituted liberalism for the Faith and who have wreaked such terrible harm over the past four and a half or so decades. Admittedly they are depressing to contemplate, but they are merely barnacles on the Church given to us by Christ. Never lose hope and never lose the Faith.

  • good morning PM yes. thank you

  • I agree with Anne’s 9:47 am entry:



    The Roman Church in America, with its embrace of liberalism, progressivism, and Marxist social justice, has left Catholic behind long ago.

  • Why do liberal Catholics hate atheist Ayn Rand? Not because she was an atheist. Indeed, they freely embrace the wealth redistributionist philosophy of atheist Karl Marx. Rather, they hate her because, for all her wrong-headed ideas, she was right in insisting that you own the fruits of your labor and no one (including the government) has the right to take those fruits away and give what is rightfully yours to those who didn’t earn them.

    Why do liberal Catholics hate Mormon Mitt Romney? Not because he is Mormon. Indeed, they freely embrace the liberalism of Mormon Harry Reid with narry a second thought. And not because Mitt Romney once supported abortion in Taxachusettes. Indeed, they freely embrace abortionist Catholic Nancy Pelosi with nary a second thought. Rather, they hate Mitt Romney because he worked honestly and hard to get where he is at, because he has five children and was loyal to his wife for all of their marriage, and because he is everything that a righteous businessman should be, and they can’t stand that.

    Liberal, progressive, Democrat = hate. Period.

  • For the record: My mother and her sisters were chased home from their Catholic school in Waterloo Iowa in the 1930’s by KKK screaming at them “Catlickers Catlickers”! They woke up one night, imagine this now, 5 little girls all alone while their mother was at work to raise them alone, with a cross buring in their front yard. They suffered severe mental anguish. no cell phones, I don’t think they even had a telephone in their house. They were chase and harassed constantly. No one came to their defense. In our neighborhood here the clan was huge and there were no african americans, only Catholics. My father-in-law who was a Democratic assemblymen for this district left the Democrat party(or as he put it they left him) because he was ostrized for being “pro-life”. I personally have stopped doing any service work with my parish as I too am made to feel that I cannot have conservative views. I don’t think politics should be spewed when working on quilts, or in the middle of RCIA or other social service meetings. I have been point blank told my views are not “kindly looked upon”. That I should join a conservative church. I go to Mass and Communion that’s where it’s at. I go alone to the food shelves and different charities and do my service as well as my prolife actvities. After my mother died, I went to a weekly Lenten “prayer” group as I felt I needed some solace and community prayer at that time. It turned into a support Hilary Clinton rally every week. I just quit.

  • Jeanne, I have one phrase for you:

    Illegitimi non carborundum!!!

  • Thank You Jeanne Rohl. I think some people had not been aware of how active the KKK was in the midwest in the 10s 20s and 30s. My father witnessed a cross-burning in SW Iowa, a maternal uncle in NW Iowa was KKK for a while. There was not a Catholic church yet in my little town at the time my parents were married in 1940. As I was growing up I had a lot of ‘splaining to do- I learned about defending the faith when I was 10.

    But now the prejudice against my “thorough” Catholicism is not from the Assembly of God or the Methodists– it is from liberal Catholics.
    I can’t be discouraged though when I think how well, how magnanimously really, our parents handled it all. With love and even humor.
    What a mixed up 100 years he 20th century was… at one same time one uncle was KKK, another on the paternal side was bolshevik in the 40’s.. Always thinking, my family, and seriously needing the guidance of the Church.

  • Yes, the Klan’s popularity and influence peaked in the early 20th century. I have many fundamentalist and evangelical friends down here in GA, and while all have mistaken understandings of our Church and Her teachings, I’ve not observed any animus. My liberal friends, au contraire. In the end it is about sex, abortion and feminism. My liberal friends who are hostile to the Church basically believe that the virtues of chastity, respect for life, and family integrity are simply tools to keep women in their place. The irony is palpable and would be hilarious if it were not tragic.

  • “For the record: My mother and her sisters were chased home from their Catholic school in Waterloo Iowa in the 1930?s by KKK screaming at them “Catlickers Catlickers”! They woke up one night, imagine this now, 5 little girls all alone while their mother was at work to raise them alone, with a cross buring in their front yard. They suffered severe mental anguish. no cell phones, I don’t think they even had a telephone in their house. They were chase and harassed constantly. No one came to their defense. In our neighborhood here the clan was huge and there were no african americans, only Catholics.”

    No one is denying that the Klan was active against Catholics as well as blacks and immigrants in the American heartland in the early part of the 20th century. In fact, probably most of us have people in previous generations of our family who had personal recollections of the Klan. But the Klan’s heyday was in the 1920s, and by the early 1930s, the Klan was in serious decline. There may still have been pockets of Klan activity against Catholics, but it was seriously curtailed by the 1930s. Again, neither I nor anyone else here would deny that the sort of things that happened to your mother happened. What we are denying are 2 things:

    (1) That unless Mr. Lambert is himself 90 years old, he has no personal recollection during his lifetime of being persecuted by the Klan; and

    (2) That persecution by the Klan has anything whatsoever to do with the Republican Party.

  • Darn double negatives. That should say:

    “… (1) That unless Mr. Lambert is himself 90 years old, he has ANY personal recollection during his lifetime of being persecuted by the Klan; and …”

  • St Augustine, invoking Revelation 2, says “The first love here alluded to is that which was proved in their tolerating for Christ’s name’s sake the false apostles. To this He commands them to return, and to do their first works. Now we are reproached with the crimes of bad men, not done by us, but by others; and some of them, moreover, not known to us. Nevertheless, even if they were actually committed, and that under our own eyes, and we bore with them for the sake of unity, letting the tares alone on account of the wheat, whosoever with open heart receives the Holy Scriptures would pronounce us not only free from blame, but worthy of no small praise.”

    [The quotation is from Saint Augustine’s 43 Epistle</, chapter 8, verse 22; which can be found at newadvent.org if I screwed up the hyperlink.]

    Am I the only one who cringes when I hear good followers of Christ talk about "liberal" parishes and finding a "conservative" one?

  • The Klan had such power at the Democrat convention in 1924 that they were able to defeat a proposed plank condemning the Klan, and then staged a major celebration called the Klanbake:


  • Anne – No one “cancels” a vote any more than someone’s bad deed cancels a good deed. The good act has merit. It is your responsibility; indeed, the only thing you have responsibility for is your own action. Pray for those who act wrongly, but don’t ever believe that you’re burdened by their actions.

    As for the priest, he can be as liberal as the day is long, but it doesn’t negate his sacramental power. Don’t let that worry you either.

    It’d be great if we had strong leaders and a faithful body of believers, but that’s pretty much never happened in the history of the Church. It’s always a struggle. Many of the saints had to put up with worse bishops than you and I will ever see. There’s never any reason to get discouraged, though.

  • Hmmm,

    Like it or not, we live in a modern or “post-modern” world. No area of life is unaffected by the intoxicating idea of “progress.” So naturally the Church will be divided between those who are proud of her history and want to preserve it and those who are ashamed of it and want to build a new legacy based upon new values, such as radical egalitarianism.

    I’m not saying we have to like these differences. But they do exist and pretending they don’t doesn’t help matters. When you read the Papal encyclicals of the last 200 years or so, you see the popes themselves making distinctions between faithful Catholics and those who pose as faithful Catholics but who advance a poisonous agenda at odds with the Catholic faith.

    I don’t know if I would use the phrases “liberal” and “conservative”, but these are the words most accessible to the average person.

  • My own friend doesn’t use the term “liberal” for herself, but calls herself a progressive Catholic. I want to remember to tell her Chesterton’s line about not having an issue with progress, but it’s the direction of the progress that is concerning! Her term for me is conservative, which is ok with me, but I do think just “Catholic” carries all the meaning.

  • @Anzlyne,

    Interesting way to make a point. With 2000+ years of history behind us, it is perfectly understandable to see true Catholic faith quite conservative…. which it IS.

    An engaging perspective, but I would use different words. We have strong leaders and a
    faithful body of believers, but they comprise the “faithful remnant” rather than the full complement of the Church. It will be a long struggle, but one fine day it will suddenly get easy (we dunno the date). Until then, saints are obliged to put up with, and help, bishops afflicted with weakened faith. Never forget, with grace ANYONE can become a saint, and all are called to do so.

    Turning to your conclusion, you’re my guy: “There’s never any reason to get discouraged, though.”

  • “Like it or not, we live in a modern or “post-modern” world. No area of life is unaffected by the intoxicating idea of “progress.” So naturally the Church will be divided between those who are proud of her history and want to preserve it and those who are ashamed of it and want to build a new legacy based upon new values, such as radical egalitarianism.”

    Truly some of our shepherds have abused their flocks for the sake of the “progress” based upon human wisdom. This “progres”s consisting solely of material ends and ignoring the vast spiritual poverty that they themselves have sown. They have abandoned many of their flock and unjustly condemned others for the sake of this human “progress.”

    This calls to mind yesterday’s Mass reading:

    “The word of the Lord came to me:
    Son of man, prophesy against the shepherds of Israel,
    in these words prophesy to them to the shepherds:
    Thus says the Lord GOD: Woe to the shepherds of Israel
    who have been pasturing themselves!
    Should not shepherds, rather, pasture sheep?
    You have fed off their milk, worn their wool,
    and slaughtered the fatlings,
    but the sheep you have not pastured.
    You did not strengthen the weak nor heal the sick
    nor bind up the injured.
    You did not bring back the strayed nor seek the lost,
    but you lorded it over them harshly and brutally.
    So they were scattered for the lack of a shepherd,
    and became food for all the wild beasts.
    My sheep were scattered
    and wandered over all the mountains and high hills;
    my sheep were scattered over the whole earth,
    with no one to look after them or to search for them.

    Therefore, shepherds, hear the word of the LORD:
    As I live, says the Lord GOD,
    because my sheep have been given over to pillage,
    and because my sheep have become food for every wild beast,
    for lack of a shepherd;
    because my shepherds did not look after my sheep,
    but pastured themselves and did not pasture my sheep;
    because of this, shepherds, hear the word of the LORD:
    Thus says the Lord GOD:
    I swear I am coming against these shepherds.
    I will claim my sheep from them
    and put a stop to their shepherding my sheep
    so that they may no longer pasture themselves.
    I will save my sheep,
    that they may no longer be food for their mouths.”

  • Amen, Phillip: “This ‘progress’ consisting solely of material ends and ignoring the vast spiritual poverty that they themselves have sown.”

    Revelation 3:14-22 is also quite pertinent – given his invitation to Obama to attend the upcoming Alfred E. Smith dinner, Cardinal Dolan and the rest of the USCCB should give heed.

    14* “And to the angel of the church in Laodicea write: ‘The words of the Amen, the faithful and true witness, the beginning of God’s creation. 15 “‘I know your works: you are neither cold nor hot. Would that you were cold or hot! 16 So, because you are lukewarm, and neither cold nor hot, I will spew you out of my mouth. 17* For you say, I am rich, I have prospered, and I need nothing; not knowing that you are wretched, pitiable, poor, blind, and naked. 18 Therefore I counsel you to buy from me gold refined by fire, that you may be rich, and white garments to clothe you and to keep the shame of your nakedness from being seen, and salve to anoint your eyes, that you may see. 19* Those whom I love, I reprove and chasten; so be zealous and repent. 20 Behold, I stand at the door and knock; if any one hears my voice and opens the door, I will come in to him and eat with him, and he with me. 21 He who conquers, I will grant him to sit with me on my throne, as I myself conquered and sat down with my Father on his throne. 22 He who has an ear, let him hear what the Spirit says to the churches.'”

  • the bottom line is this. If you’re not a pro life candidate then you probably don’t really care about others anyway.You’d be willing to use the’ charity’ of government to get votes and attack truly charitable organizations. You will be pro gay marriage and euthanasia-not to mention cloning and embryonic stem cell research. You will then attack Republicans for not caring about the poor-only the wealthy(that infamous upper 1%). Of course you will forget that envy is a vice just as much as greed is and that in order to help the poor they must be born first. So the first question i ask about ANY candidate(either party)is very simple. Are they truly pro life. Everything else generally falls into place.

Pope Tony Excommunicates Santorum

Tuesday, March 20, AD 2012

Well that’s certainly how I read this screed by Morning’s Minion.  It seems that Rick has offended the Magisterium of Vox Nova.

I get annoyed by silly media talk of Santorum’s connections to Opus Dei, everybody’s favorite dark and sinister Catholic cloak-and-dagger society.

Such a promising beginning.  Then it unravels.

The underlying assumption is that Santorum is a deeply orthodox Catholic, with a whiff of old-school authoritarianism about him. But this is nonsense. Opus Dei is a traditionalist Catholic group, heavily influenced by Spanish spirituality. It’s not my cup of tea, but it puts strong emphasis on fidelity to Church teachings, and I assume that means all Church teachings. Santorum, on the other hand, is a classic American right-wing liberal, picking and choosing his Church teachings, and with a spirituality that seems far more evangelical than Catholic. It is no accident that Santorum’s core support comes from right-wing evangelicals, not Catholics. Opus Dei has a vaguely “foreign” feel in the United States. Nobody could possibly say that about Santorum!

Goodness gracious.  My favorite part is where MM describe Santorum’s spirituality as “Evangelical,” whatever that means.  It’s the usual litany of cliches from Tony: right-wing liberals, scary Evangelical bogeymen, accusations of cafeteria Catholicism.  Honestly at this point you can play the Morning’s Minion drinking game and you’d be drunk by the second paragraph.  As for the astute observation that Santorum polls better with Evangelicals than with Catholics – well, I’m not sure if that fact reflects poorly on Santorum or on other Catholics.  Considering that many Catholics share Minion’s, umm, unique perspective on the faith it’s not surprising that Santorum is not doing so well with his co-religionists.

As for the specific charges that Morning’s Minion lays out against Santorum, I’ll link to Lisa Graas’s blog post here, and paste her responses after the jump.  She does a good job dismantling every claim laid against Santorum, and so I have nothing else to add.

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19 Responses to Pope Tony Excommunicates Santorum

  • Who brought popcorn? This could be entertaining…

  • Many of MM’s points are over the top, but some, at least, do require more careful consideration.

    American Exceptionalism

    Well, it depends upon what MM means by American Exceptionalism. I can’t venture over to VN without my blood pressure rising to unhealthy levels, so I can only guess that he does not mean it is anti-Catholic to love one’s country or be proud of its achievements, but rather American Exceptionalism is the belief that America is somehow exempt or “excepted” from moral standards that pertain to other countries. The attitude of “when other contries do it, it’s wrong; but when America does it, it’s ok.” E.g., torturing is wrong when Iran does it, but not when we do it.

    Rick Santorum supports the use of force against prisoners, not to extract confessions to crimes or to intimidate the individual, but to save lives.

    But you do the same thing the pro-choicers do – that is, you leave off what is implicit in the action. Pro-choicers always talk about freedom of choice, but rarely say the freedom to choose what? To murder.

    Likewise, you say Rick supports the use of force, not to intimidate the individual, but to save lives. But how does he save these lives? By intimidating (if not worse) the individual. You can say this is not “ends justifies the means” but that’s exactly what it is. Even just war doctrine does not support torture. Just war doctrine relates to two things – having a just reason to go to war (which is what Grass is probably alluding to) and conducting the war in a just manner. One can be justified to go to war, but conduct the war in an an unjust manner (e.g., by torturing prisoners) and thereby still transgress just war teaching.

    It is also very vague on what is meant by force in this context – how much? Whatever it takes? Are there any limits? If so, what are they? If enemies did the same action to our citizens, would it be different (eg, if Japanese forces captured one of the Enola Gay pilots before the bombings, would they be allowed to “apply force” to find out the intended targets?).

  • By the way, his screed does seem to offer at least a “left-handed” compliment to Opus Dei. Maybe he’s getting soft.

  • All you need to know about Tony A is that he has now on at least 2 occasions (and I’m sure there are more) made his stand with the most anti-Catholic administration in this nation’s history and against the Bishops of his own Church on matters of utmost importance: (1) the Stupak Amendment, which would have clearly and unequivocally included Hyde Amendment type language in ObamaCare; and (2) the HHS mandate. Tony routinely on these matters disparages those Bishops as out of touch and ignorant and partisan, while pretending that Obama is the embodiment of Catholic Social Teaching.

    Tony says Santorum is “anti-Catholic”? Then let’s be honest about Tony: he’s not a Catholic at all – he’s a Democrat first, last, and always. He’s a hard-core, left-wing statist hiding behind a fascade of Catholicism as a means of pushing what is at its core a secularist, anti-Catholic agenda that sees the government picking winners and losers in internal Church affairs, and determining Church doctrine and which Church activities constitute the practice of “religion” and which do not.

    Following Santorum’s preferred agenda would not threaten the Catholic Church or the Catholic faith in the least. Following Tony’s preferred agenda has brought this country as close to the precipace of anti-religious tyranny as we’ve ever been.

    NOW tell me who’s “anti-Catholic”?

  • , but rather American Exceptionalism is the belief that America is somehow exempt or “excepted” from moral standards that pertain to other countries.

    Tony doesn’t explain what he means by this, but this is certainly not what Santorum believes.

    As for the bullet about torture, this is admittedly one area where I have some quibbles with Santorum (and thus with Lisa’s defense of him). I won’t go into further detail because I really don’t want Catholic combox discussion #9235029554222 about whether or not the use of waterboarding is intrinsically evil.

  • Here are a few more targets for Pope Tony to excommunicate on the charge of American Exceptionalism:

    “Nor, perchance did the fact which We now recall take place without some design of divine Providence. Precisely at the epoch when the American colonies, having, with Catholic aid, achieved liberty and independence, coalesced into a constitutional Republic the ecclesiastical hierarchy was happily established amongst you; and at the very time when the popular suffrage placed the great Washington at the helm of the Republic, the first bishop was set by apostolic authority over the American Church. The well-known friendship and familiar intercourse which subsisted between these two men seems to be an evidence that the United States ought to be conjoined in concord and amity with the Catholic Church. And not without cause; for without morality the State cannot endure-a truth which that illustrious citizen of yours, whom We have just mentioned, with a keenness of insight worthy of his genius and statesmanship perceived and proclaimed. But the best and strongest support of morality is religion.”

    Pope Leo XIII

    “Freedom is not only a gift, but also a summons to personal responsibility. Americans know this from experience – almost every town in this country has its monuments honoring those who sacrificed their lives in defense of freedom, both at home and abroad. The preservation of freedom calls for the cultivation of virtue, self-discipline, sacrifice for the common good and a sense of responsibility towards the less fortunate. It also demands the courage to engage in civic life and to bring one’s deepest beliefs and values to reasoned public debate. In a word, freedom is ever new. It is a challenge held out to each generation, and it must constantly be won over for the cause of good (cf. Spe Salvi, 24). Few have understood this as clearly as the late Pope John Paul II. In reflecting on the spiritual victory of freedom over totalitarianism in his native Poland and in eastern Europe, he reminded us that history shows, time and again, that “in a world without truth, freedom loses its foundation”, and a democracy without values can lose its very soul (cf. Centesimus Annus, 46). Those prophetic words in some sense echo the conviction of President Washington, expressed in his Farewell Address, that religion and morality represent “indispensable supports” of political prosperity.”

    Pope Bendict XVI

    “Respect for religious conviction played no small part in the birth and early development of the United States. Thus John Dickinson, Chairman of the Committee for the Declaration of Independence, said in 1776: “Our liberties do not come from charters; for these are only the declaration of preexisting rights. They do not depend on parchments or seals; but come from the King of Kings and the Lord of all the earth.” Indeed it may be asked whether the American democratic experiment would have been possible, or how well it will succeed in the future, without a deeply rooted vision of divine providence over the individual and over the fate of nations.”

    Pope John Paul II

    “A few days after the liberation of Rome, Lieutenant General Mark Clark, Commander of the Fifth Allied Army, paid his respects to the Pope: “I am afraid you have been disturbed by the noise of my tanks. I am sorry.” Pius XII smiled and replied: “General, any time you come to liberate Rome, you can make just as much noise as you like.””
    Pius XII

    Then we have Pio Nono who contributed a block of marble for the building of the Washington Monument.

    Pope Tony had better buy his bulls of excommunication by the gross.

  • The comments are hysterical, as Tony is being chided for being too soft on Opus Dei.

  • Well, I went too far in saying that Tony is not a Catholic at all, and for that I apologize. I certainly don’t want to be in the business of excommunicating those with whom I have philosophical, theological, and political differences. That’s a bit above my “paygrade”.

    But the rest of my comment stands. Tony is FAR more guilty of promoting an “anti-Catholic” agenda than Santorum is.

  • Does Vox Nova generally lend itself to be nothing more than liberal propaganda with strategically placed Catholic fig leaves?

    Santorum is one of the most pro-family, pro-life, faithful to the Magisterium Catholics we’ve seen run for the highest office in the land and they deign to attack him?

  • “Does Vox Nova generally lend itself to be nothing more than liberal propaganda with strategically placed Catholic fig leaves?”

    When it ventures into the political realm, with certain honorable exceptions among their writers, yes.

  • Jay, the only — ONLY — evidence for Morning’s Minion’s Catholicism is his own insistence upon it. He’s one of those I’ve been saying that bishops need to bring into line. He needs to get with the Church, or get out of it.

  • One commits a horrid error when one equates big-government socialism with the Gospels . . .

    VN needs to read and believe the Gospels, not Marx and Lenin.

    Someone tell them their definition of “social justice” is not the alibi for every mortal sin in the Book.

    Gospel “Planks in their eyes” – hundreds of aerial drone murders; 45,000,000 abortions; hundreds of millions of contraceptions; endless aggressive wars; every day fomenting mass class envy/hatred; gay privileges; etc.

    Speck – three mass murderers water-boarded; tax cuts for the hated rich; what-have-you; trying to keep it so as working class Americans can afford food and fuel; and etc.

    Capital punishment hasn’t been outlawed by Uncle Joe Biden’s boss, either.

  • Lisa is outright wrong about the torture issue. No need to rehash the arguments for the regular readers here. Newcomers can google ‘catholic waterboarding’ to get what they need.

  • There are quite orthodox thinkers who do not believe every act of coercive force is torture. Some very good ones outside the self-appointed, non-trained “experts.”

    Some intelligent and non-inflammatory discussion of the topic:


  • Water-boarding is so last administration. That was then.

    This is now. The Obama regime savagely (human dignity! Veritatus Splendor!!) ) kills them with unmanned aerial drones.

  • I, too, have tangled with Tony before over multiple issues. I am happier to report we have come to an amiable truce. While Tony’s critiques of American Catholicism’s tendency to see the faith through an overly-American prism can be over-the-top, they also can be a helpful corrective.

    The problem, I think, comes from the fact that I think it can be fairly said likewise that Tony sees the faith through lenses that are too uncritical of continental European assumptions and concerns.

    Also, it would help if Tony would read Santorum’s “It Takes A Family.” Santorum’s conservatism is a lot more solidarity-oriented and less-atomistic individualist than the standard American conservative template.

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The Catholic Left Falls Into Line

Wednesday, February 15, AD 2012

It was inevitable that most of the Catholic Left, in any confrontation between the Church and Obama Caesar, would side with the Messiah from Chicago.  A petition making the rounds indicates how quickly this process has played out. 


Today the Obama administration announced an important regulation that will protect the conscience rights of religious organizations and ensure that all women have access to contraception without a co-payment. We applaud the White House for listening carefully to the concerns raised by religious leaders on an issue that has provoked heated and often misinformed debate. This ruling is a major victory for religious liberty and women’s health. President Obama has demonstrated that these core values do not have to be in conflict.


Specifically, this new regulation guarantees that no religiously affiliated institution will have to pay for services that violate its moral beliefs or even refer employees for this coverage. Instead, if a woman’s employer is an objecting university, hospital or other religious institution, her insurer will be required to offer her coverage at no cost. This is a sensible, common-ground solution.


In recent days, sound bites and divisive rhetoric have too often pitted the faith community against sound science and public health.The previous regulations caused an unnecessary conflict between the administration, the Catholic Church and other religious institutions. We are encouraged that the Obama administration has developed a substantive solution that addresses the concerns of the many constituencies involved. We look forward to bringing the same level of passion displayed in this debate to other pressing moral issues that face our nation.

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23 Responses to The Catholic Left Falls Into Line

  • Any people in this list who are Catholic should be publicly excommunicated.

  • These are brilliant and well-educated people but you realize that they’re not the magisterium.

  • Oh I understand that Mike. I am not at all certain that the Catholic signers of this piece of tripe understand that however.

  • These brilliant and well educated people have “been done educated into imbecility.” I realize that’s a quote from Fr. Corapi, and he sadly fell off the wagon as it were. Nevertheless, in this case, it’s correct.

  • Our first acts of civil disobedience should be protesting at the DNC in Charlotte this September.

  • They know what to think.

    They do not know how to think.

    I’m imagining Tokyo Rose propaganda broadcasts . . .

    Peace and justice!

    It’s okay to lie and cheat to advance peace and justice.

    And, to provide political support to those killing 45,000,000 unborn humans . . .

    Peace and justIce!

  • They are not educated.

    They are indoctrinated.

  • Donald, I should have said, “we realize that they’re not the magisterium.”
    Paul, that’s an oldie but a goodie.

  • T Shaw,

    I stand – er, sit – corrected.

    BTW, while I have mentioned this before, perhaps it bears repeating. I know of a very intelligent man who runs a pro-nuclear energy blog site and he is thoroughly liberal (which is oxymoronic given that liberals have fought nuclear energy tooth and nail for 40+ years). He (and most of his readers) know far more about science, engineering, and technology than I ever will. But they BELIEVE in that godless man of sin, Obama, hook, line and sinker. They look at us as hate criminals. The division between “us” and “them” couldn’t be greater. They twist around history to say what they want it to mean. They hate Israel, love Iran, and object to everything the US has done in world affairs since WW II. They openly despise the Church, and where they claim to follow the Gospel of Jesus Christ, it isn’t holiness and righteousness that matter to them but what T. Shaw pointed out: “peace and justice” nonsense. They won’t look at the actual statistics regarding the real reasons for abortion given at Priests for Life or the USCCB web sites. They won’t even consider that life begins at conception, physical evidence be damned. The obviousness that homosexual behavior is contrary to natural law is sneered at. And these are SCIENTISTS of the highest order! I just don’t get it. I never will. How can someone be so smart – far, far smarter than many others at this blog, myself included – and be so abysmally deceived? Despair is a sin and I am sinful.


  • Great! Where do I sign? Second question, why is this pen drawing blood from my hand?

  • This ruling ….

    That says it all, doesn’t it? Presidents are not supposed to rule; kings and Caesars are.

  • I don’t doubt that these are smart folks (both the ones who signed and the one to which Paul alludes). For that reason, I find it very hard to accept that they are duped, indoctrinated, etc. What I do not find hard to accept is that they deliberately ignore these teachings because they simply want contraception/abortion (or whatever). They know; they just don’t care.

  • Now, this “when does life begin thingy” hits close to home.

    Our first grandchild is scheduled to make her debut in early July.

    Our daughter-in-law has emailed us sonogram pictures since early as God Almighty began forming in her mother’s womb our granddaughter.

    That is clearly a human on those pictures.

    Re: the sad social justice crowd. It’s not me. I know next to nothing. My education is clearly lacking. It’s St. Augustine. He dealt with such error in the early 400’s anno domini Rome.

    “The only evils these people recognize are having to endure hunger, disease, and murder. It is as though man’s greatest good were to have everything good, except himself.”

  • I sincerely believe there is an emotional disorder that transcends intelligence or level of education, wherein the victim has an underlying sense of insecurity, bordering on phobia, necessitating a strong political figure in which to invest. This insecurity then blinds the victim to inconsistencies or outright contradictions in his or her belief system, making the inherent synthesis imbalanced and objectively invalid.

    It may be due to lack of a strong father-figure in youth. Perhaps Dad was there, and even loving, but lacked principle and steadfastness. It may be that, as they grew and were being ‘taught,’ that there were no teachers or other intellectual figures of authority that drew out the aspects of critical thinking necessary to make rational decisions that all follow common principle in logical order.

    Regardless of cause, it is quite evident that a foundation of concept and process that produces ideas of a stripe in one area but contradictory ideas elsewhere exists. There needs to be an object within which to rationalize that inequality, so that it can be contained, and that object is then The Leader, who spins fact and fancy into a complex web of duplicitous confusion, allowing the imbalanced person the ability to simply “follow the leader” instead of confronting the intellectual contention within.

    Contradiction is a rock in the shoe of the critical mind and it will be ejected when it becomes intolerable. That such an ejection is not happening in the minds of people like the above signatories, it leads me to believe that they are in fact just stable enough to retain positions of influence, but would crumble if made to explain such inconsistencies in a logical, orderly fashion. Of course that leads to the “subjective truth” tripe that the Left falls upon when challenged, and that’s another conversation.

  • I agree that insecurity and inferiority feelings are the culprits– these are very bright capable people and as we continue to seek the way to evangelize them we need to respect their intellect and their will to do the good– teachers know demeaning a pupil doesn’t work, but building on what is good and enlarging it does–
    we need not to polarize more within our church… and cause our cause to fail– But instead find a way to haul them into the boat (barque) -highlighting contradictions while respecting their intellectual commitment to truth might be a way to do that

  • ANYONE that supports Obama does NOT support being Catholic, or even Christian.
    As I keep stating Where is the Christ in his action? You cannot claim to be Catholic if you are willing to compromise the teachings of the Church, the mandates of the Pope, or the teachings of the Bible. Murder is Murder. no matter what name you give it. Sin is sin no matter how you wish to wrap it. The devil comes in many forms. Sins provides many options. If a criminal was coming to rob you would he ask for in invitation to take your possessions? Your soul is open for the taking once you close it to the will of God!

  • Half of the list doesn’t claim to be Catholic.

    The half claiming to be Catholic here replace Teachings of the Church/objective truth with satanic opinions. That, by definition (look it up, Doogie), is heresy.

    Christ did not come among us to save us from suffering or to create Heaven on Earth.

    Jesus Christ came to save us from our sins, and by His Life, Death and Resurrection to purchase for us the rewards of eternal life.

    I see a couple of them have “S.J.” in their handles. Every one on the list ought to put “S.J.” behind their name: “Society of Judas.”

    While there is time, they must repent, confess, do penance, amend their lives, and through good works glorify God.

    Otherwise, I’m pretty sure none on the list will be getting into Heaven.

  • Well indoctrinated liberals perhaps but brilliant no. Brilliant is when Churchill pithily grasped the criminal folly of the Kaiser:

    “The Germans took a somber decision. Upon the western front they had from the beginning used the most terrible means of offense at their disposal. They had employed poison gas on the largest scale and had invented the ‘Flammenwerfer.’ Nevertheless, it was with a sense of awe that they turned upon Russia the most grisly of weapons. They transported Lenin in a sealed train like a plague bacillus from Switzerland into Russia.”

    Anyone who has thought about this knows that the HHS compromise is nothing but ‘plague bacillus’, even worse than the original requirement, in that it will destroy the moral integrity of the Catholic Church in the US, infecting everything she touches. This is Pharisaic at its worst – the Catholic Church does not accept birth-control and knows that abortion is murder – but is willing to look the other way as insurers, PP and Warren Buffett keep the muck off her hypocritical hands. Obama must be counting on a lot of stupid Catholics.

  • so I guess my idea about trying to evangelize the Catholic Left is right out. : /

  • Some lovely groups represented on that list: Sojourners, NETWORK, Evangelical Partnership, DJAN. These are alynsky progeny and closely working with the DP. I trust they are not receiving CCHD funding but would be curious.

  • Paul, do you remember this Prayer?,,”….I thank You, Father for hiding these things to the learned and revealing them to mere children…..”. “….The Wisdom of God is Foolishness to the World…” These Truths were given to us 2000+ ago and they sure ring true today from what I have just read in this Post.

  • Who was the first “social justice” Christian?

    In other words, who was the first follower of Christ turned his back on the salvation of souls and gave precedence to a worldly agenda?

  • Perhaps the answer to T Shaw’s question is in John 12:1-7:

    1* Six days before the Passover, Jesus came to Bethany, where Lazarus was, whom Jesus had raised from the dead. 2 There they made him a supper; Martha served, and Lazarus was one of those at table with him. 3 Mary took a pound of costly ointment of pure nard and anointed the feet of Jesus and wiped his feet with her hair; and the house was filled with the fragrance of the ointment. 4* But Judas Iscariot, one of his disciples (he who was to betray him), said, 5 “Why was this ointment not sold for three hundred denarii * and given to the poor?” 6* This he said, not that he cared for the poor but because he was a thief, and as he had the money box he used to take what was put into it. 7* Jesus said, “Let her alone, let her keep it for the day of my burial. 8 The poor you always have with you, but you do not always have me.”

The Catholic Left and America the Evil

Tuesday, February 8, AD 2011

Thomas Peters took  the usual suspects, including Vox Nova, on the Catholic Left to task for ignoring Lila Rose’s new expose last week about Planned Parenthood a\k\a Worse Than Murder, Inc.  Mark Shea joined in.  In response Morning’s Minion at Vox Nova went on the offensive and blasted everyone to the right of Joseph Stalin after a pro forma condemnation of Planned Parenthood.  Nate Wildermuth made a more interesting contribution:


Thomas Peters and Mark Shea and those of like-mind rightfully point out that abortion and contraception are not understood correctly by many ‘progressive’ Catholics. When I lived in the Dorothy Day Catholic Worker House in Washington D.C., I participated in the vigils at Planned Parenthood, and asked a fellow Worker if she’d like to come. “Can’t do everything,” she said. “Not my thing.” And that’s the sort of answer that makes us think, “Wow, they just don’t get it.” The ongoing slaughter of children in the womb is one of the most frightening signs of the disintegration of Western Civilization.

And yet, standing so near the truth, Thomas Peters and Mark Shea and many of like-mind totally lose their minds. Example: they have likely Marched for Life in Washington D.C., but not before attending the idol-worshiping ceremonies that precede it, where the multitudes pledge their allegiance to a flag soaked in blood, to a Republic prostituted for Mammon, to a nation kneeling under a god called Constitution. “That’s just proper patriotism for the good parts of America,” they might say. But anyone who pledges allegiance to the American flag or gets goosebumps at the National Anthem just doesn’t get it: America is the greatest force for evil in the world in the history of mankind.

To get it means to be shell-shocked by the utter depravity of every aspect of the United States, to see that the game is up, that doom is allotted, and that abortion, war, poverty, and every kind of violence will continue unabated until the wrath and judgment of God is poured out upon this proud and blind people.

Like the blind men grasping at different parts of an elephant, we should waste less time denying what the other sees, and more time putting together the pieces, no matter how horrifying the conclusion.”

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55 Responses to The Catholic Left and America the Evil

  • “…Vox Nova went on the offensive…”

    Vox Nasty.

  • The left’s motive is psychological. They are solipsists, adopting the narcissistic illusion that –since everything depends upon us– all we need do is change our own behavior for everything to turn out right. It is akin to the co-dependent strategy of the child of an alcoholic, who strives to achieve perfect behavior in order to motivate the parent to change. To think otherwise is to concede that the world is a chaotic place that we cannot control, and demands of us difficult choices, responses of limited effect, and –above all– the uncertainty of faith.

  • Pro forma? Does that mean that MM’s condemnation of PP was insincere? Is he lying about his views on PP? Why would someone like MM, who has no compunction about sharing his views, feel the need to fudge here?

    Is it possible to be pro-life without making abortion the pre-eminent topic of one’s writing? (I write on the Eucharist far more than on abortion.) Is it even possible that one could be against abortion and disagree with the right about health care? Or must we assert that anyone who disagrees with the right about anything disagrees about abortion, even if they aren’t willing to say as much? MM doesn’t get to decide his own opinion on abortion, you will do it for him.

    It is one thing to disagree with MM (or any other fellow Catholic) on which public policy best serves the common good. It is another to imply his insincerity.

    If we at VN say nothing about abortion, we are pro-abortion. If we say something about abortion, it is not satisfactory if it does not toe the GOP line. Every post, and there are a lot of them, is just one more exception that proves the rule. There is a self-fulfilling prophecy going on here.

  • Also, I’m quite a bit right of Stalin and got no impression that I was in MM’s sites. A long list is not the same as a broad list.

  • Brett, MM voted for the most pro-abort President in our nation’s history. He is an unfailing shill for the Democrat party. Abortion obviously ranks very, very, very low on his order of priority.

  • Brett,

    Take a look at Morning’s Minions work at Vox-Nova. On the rare occasion that he bothers to even offer a mild rebuke of the abortion industry, he insists on following it up with a much harsher upbraiding of Republicans. Abortion to him is nothing more than a distraction from the bigger issues of government mandated health care and whatever pet leftist project he has in his cross-hairs.

    Nate’s comment is simply deranged. Can we put to bed the notion that we should take any of these fools seriously?

  • Wildermuth’s comments are warped and bizarre and I think reflect his own idiosyncratic pathologies. I would tend to suspect that the ill motives of the the general run of the Catholic left are far more commonplace.

  • I suppose there is a small grain of truth to the claim that the US is the greatest source of evil among nations. At present, it is the most powerful, and projects that power world-wide. No other country, except for China, perhaps, can project such power and China does not seem to be interested in doing so at this time, at least not in the same way as the US. But by the same token, the US is also arguably the greatest source of good among nations – no other country rushes to provide aid as much as the US. I don’t think it is necessarily inconsistent to be both – when you wield a lot of power, how you use it impacts for good or ill. It is manifestly unfair to only note the good or the bad. Just my own observation, but those on the right seem to overplay the good; those on the left overplay the bad.

  • MM voted for the most pro-abort President in our nation’s history.

    Have you mention this to the Justice Department? Given that MM is an Irish citizen and not entitled to vote, it seems you have accused him of a felony.

  • The basic error is in thinking that the “Catholic left” is Catholic at all.

  • Be careful. Disagreeing with Vox Nova’s America-hatred is condemned in Veritatis Splendour 80.

  • I was aware Katherine that MM is an Irish import. Considering that he endorsed Obama in a has-to-be-read-to-be-believed post on VN, I assumed that he had become a naturalized American citizen.


  • And once again we see the validity of Paul’s Second Law: “Life is too short to read Vox Nova.”

  • I think any honest reader can see that MM believes the Democrats give us a better chance at reducing abortion in the US.

    A fair-minded person can disagree with his assessment.

    But I don’t think it is fair-minded to imply that he is faking a concern for the unborn.

    And we can work with those with whom we disagree much more easily than with those we don’t trust. Sowing distrust of pro-life democrats imperils the pro-life cause. It ensures that whenever the Dems take power, as they will every couple elections, the house and/or senate will be largely pro-choice because, no matter where abortion is on MM’s list of priorities, it is pretty low for most Americans.

    One can be wrong without being dishonest. I do it all the time. 😉

  • Brett,

    At best you’re being incredibly naive if you think that the Democratic party has become more indebted to the abortion industry because of pro-lifers sowing “distrust” of pro-life Democrats. The Democratic party has done this of its own accord, and so-called pro-life Democrats have aided and abetted the Democrats by their continued blind allegiance towards the party.

    One can be wrong without being dishonest

    And some can be both.

  • The main problem is that, unless you are a news portal or something like it, blogging is entirely idiosyncratic. You blog about what you blog about. Making an argument from silence is especially risky under those circumstances.

    I think it’s a lot more telling when the news media doesn’t cover a particular story (e.g., the serial killing spree of Kermit Gosnell) that otherwise pushes all the buttons which usually mandate close coverage.

  • “I think any honest reader can see that MM believes the Democrats give us a better chance at reducing abortion in the US.

    A fair-minded person can disagree with his assessment.”

    Actually, any truly honest person should. There is little in the Democratic Party that is intrinsically “pro-life.” One may argue that increasing “investments” in different social programs will result in decreased abortion rates. However, there is little evidence that such is the case as there is little evidence that increasing “investments” in most areas actually results in positive change (see education.) So one may hold that position but it is very weak and does not make one necessarily “pro-life.”

    But the Democratic Party is almost entirely in the hold of abortion on demand, at any stage of pregnancy and for some, including Obama, even after birth. This wholesale surrender to an intrinsic evil, which cannot be rationalized by “investments” of dubious value in other so-called “pro-life” issues, renders MM’s vociferous support of the Democratic Party offensive.

  • Brett,

    It’s not that I think MM was lying about opposing Planned Parenthood. I think he is sincerely against Planned Parenthood and against abortion. But I don’t think he cares about it very much. It clearly doesn’t get him exercised the way that, say, a post by Thomas Peters criticizing Vox Nova does.

  • Thanks for the re-post, Donald, and in its entirety no less. And perhaps you and your readers are correct — perhaps it is I who have lost my mind, rather than those who see abortion as a holocaust yet continue to believe in a holocausting nation. Time will tell.

  • No, I do not think you have lost your mind Nate. Frankly, I was quite surprised by the post. You and I have often differed over the years, but I have always respected the sincerity of your pacifism. The depth of your feeling against America shocked me. America is much more today than the evil of abortion, just as America was much more in the days of Lincoln than slavery.

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  • Brett,

    I made an honest go of being a Pro-Life Democrat. It cannot be done.

    I am a Pennsylvanian and I remember fondly Governor Casey. I was proud of his stand and furious as the Democrat Party’s retribution. I hung in there until 2006. I read every bio and supported pro-life dems at every turn. Then Governor Casey’s son, now Senator Casey, proved to me that there is no place for Catholic beliefs in the Democrat Party.

    It was with a heavy heart too that I switched my affiliation for I honestly believed that the calls to justice that theoretically underpin the Dem platform well articulated the Church’s preference for the poor. After more than a decade of blindness, I acknowledged that the entire platform was a fraud.

    What you believe about the Democrat Party is of no concern to me. I have heard every false argument imaginable about how one SHOULD be a Dem if one believes the Church’s teachings. Believe what you will but you shouldn’t be surprised to be called on it when the party that our fellow Catholics on the Left support runs utterly rampant over truth and right.

    For my part, the Republicans have my support as long as they are the better alternative to the Dems. I don’t believe that the GOP represents the only or even the right answer to many social questions… but the organization is certainly less wrong than the Democrat Party.

  • Brett,

    Maniac MM needs to be judged by what he does, not what he writes. Talk is cheap.

    Nate seems a nice guy and I bet he means well. He seemingly thinks his country is “holocaust nation” and anyone that pledges allegiance is evil, too. I doubt he means that. He possibly couldn’t dream up any other defense for catholic abortion sympathizers.

    I would draw to lefty caths’ attentions the parable of the pharisee and the publican in the temple. It was the humble sinner’s prayer that was counted.

    The road to hell is paved with good intentions.

  • My post is updated to reflect the ongoing critiques. God bless.

  • rather than those who see abortion as a holocaust yet continue to believe in a holocausting nation

    Nate, that policy was imposed on our elected officials by our frigging judges. It is an indicator of the decay the bar in particular and the professional-managerial bourgeoisie in general. “The Nation” has not had much to do with it.

    Calling attention to the United States in this regard is peculiar. Abortion is regrettably lawful throughout the Occident and in the Far East as well. Malta has held out.

  • Dude, yeah, I know she was crazy. I’m glad you broke up with her. But it’s been months, man. You’ve got to stop talking about her. It doesn’t matter what kind of crazy stuff she’s into these days. It’s over. Move on.

  • I really think it is outrageous and obscene to identify America as the (or as the updated post says “one of the”) greatest source of evil in the history of mankind.

    What western nation even has a pro-life movement with the numbers and influence of America?

    If one wanted to speak of the evil of the last few administrations, that would be a different matter. But that isn’t what is taking place here: the flag, the Constitution, the essence of America is what is being identified as “evil” here.

    One of the posters on the comment thread for Nate’s post made the following point as well:

    “Who is “we”? The country doesn’t have abortions. Pregnant women do, and each one is making an individual decision. I don’t see how those individual decisions can all be consolidated into one action and collective responsibility assigned”

    Precisely right. The evil of abortion was ultimately given to us by radical leftist and feminist SUBVERSIVES – adherents of an alien, foreign, anti-American ideology called Marxism and its variants – who burrowed their way into our academic and political institutions. The American people did not choose legalized abortion, they had it foisted upon them by the Supreme Court, which was in turn provoked to rule by a cabal of radical feminists who manipulated and use, and then discarded Norma McCorvey or “Roe” from the infamous decision – and who is now a famous pro-life activist, by the way!

    I agree that glory and honor must be given first to God, and obedience first to the Magisterium of the Church – having satisfied those requirements there is nothing wrong with recognizing the relative goodness of the United States.

    Speaking about the relatively GOOD conditions of the Church in America as opposed to Europe, Pope Leo XIII wrote:

    “The main factor, no doubt, in bringing things into this happy state were the ordinances and decrees of your synods, especially of those which in more recent times were convened and confirmed by the authority of the Apostolic See. But, moreover (a fact which it gives pleasure to acknowledge), thanks are due to the equity of the laws which obtain in America and to the customs of the well-ordered Republic. For the Church amongst you, unopposed by the Constitution and government of your nation, fettered by no hostile legislation, protected against violence by the common laws and the impartiality of the tribunals, is free to live and act without hindrance.” — Pope Leo XIII, Longinqua

    Leo went on to warn, however, that America’s condition of separation of Church and State was not ideal or preferred, and that the success of the Church would be even greater and more secure if she were rightly constituted. Being a majority Protestant nation, this couldn’t have happened then or now, but in principle it is true.

    Leo also said:

    “All intelligent men are agreed, and We Ourselves have with pleasure intimated it above, that America seems destined for greater things. Now, it is Our wish that the Catholic Church should not only share in, but help to bring about, this prospective greatness.”

    In a better era, when leaders were not consumed by envy and resentment, as well as false idealism and utopianism, this was an easily expressed thought by “all intelligent men.” And this when Catholics in America were still officially discriminated against in many places, and had to fight for respect in the public arena!

    So any argument that treats our fallen nature as if it doesn’t exist, or could one day be abolished, is simply asinine and ignorant to the good that actually does exist and can be preserved. And any argument that says we cannot appreciate – not worship but appreciate and even safeguard – our Constitution and our traditions as if it were a form of idolatry isn’t speaking like a Catholic, but rather a Jehova’s Witness.

  • And for all that, I STILL have moral qualms about the methods of Lila Rose. There is something about the use of deception on that scale that bothers me, even if it is for a good cause. I cannot shake the “feeling” that it is immoral, even though I as much as anyone on our side would like to see Planned Parenthood destroyed.

    In fact I have to be honest – I would have less of a problem with the actual destruction of a Planned Parenthood, say by a fire (in which no one was killed of course), than I do with the use of deception and entrapment.

  • Art, you really think that abortion is only happening in our country because of some accident of bad judges? As opposed to the ‘sexual revolution’ and countless other lies that infect the American Way of Life? Moreover, overturning Roe vs. Wade won’t stop the ‘elected officials’ in New York and California from letting the murder of babies continue.

    This is precisely what my post was about — missing the big picture, and thinking that except for a few bad people (usually over there), everything in America is basically fine. Everything isn’t basically fine. Secular humanism has the world by the throat, and the hand that squeezes has U.S.A. tattooed on it.

  • Donald, I appreciate your thoughts. But I wouldn’t say that I hate America, any more than I would hate the Titanic. I just don’t think its going anywhere good, and would like to help people get off before the thing sinks.

  • “and would like to help people get off before the thing sinks.”

    And go where Nate? I can’t think of a place on this planet where I would rather live. Judging from the immigration rates to this country, both legal and illegal, I think a great many non-Americans around the globe feel precisely the same way as I do.

  • I have a good many Christian friends and associates who are leaving the city to live in the country, try their hand at small-town agrarian life. Wendell Berry stuff. I think that’s the right start — not moving away from America, but moving into the places where America is at its best.

  • Art, you really think that abortion is only happening in our country because of some accident of bad judges?

    The policy was imposed by the appellate judiciary and has been maintained by the appellate judiciary against the wishes of all but about nine state legislatures. Two thirds of the female population who have been in their child bearing years since 1970 have not participated in this practice and (as Fr. Neuhaus put it), 70% of the population disapproves of abortion in 95% of the circumstances in which it takes place.

    The elected officials could have used the tools at their command to discipline the judiciary. They did not. There should have been a popular mobilization to do that and restore the status quo ante 1967. There has been to some extent, but it has been stymied by the fact that the culture of the bar is simply very different from that of the general public, and the appellate judiciary has retained a prestige it certainly does not merit.

    The legal regime in question is permissive. A great deal of crime has been committed as a consequence, but it makes little sense to refer to ‘the United States’ as a ‘force’ for ‘evil’ ‘in the world’. The evil occurs in social life generally. The political dimension of social life is implicated only because of the misfeasance of the judiciary. For all that, the United States Government has not promoted abortion abroad in the world except perhaps through intermittent funding of United Nations agencies up to no good. And, again, it makes little sense to complain of public policy in the United States (much less the United States as a polity or society) when the evil in question is a feature of social life in the entire Occident and much of the Far East as well.

  • I have a good many Christian friends and associates who are leaving the city to live in the country, try their hand at small-town agrarian life.

    Get real.

    In my part of the world, small towns and rural areas suffer very few violent crimes. One county I lived in had a population shy of 70,000 and a mean of about five robberies in a year. There has not been a homicide hearabouts since 1996. That is the advantage you have over the city. Otherwise, the degenerate aspects of the age are to be found here as anywhere.

    They do not publish birth notices in my local paper anymore. They did so as recently as a decade ago. There were certain conventions observed (e.g. placing the mother’s maiden name in parentheses) in these notices which told you bits of information about the families in question. You could tell from these conventions what share of births at the local hospitals were out of wedlock. In the catchments of our two small-town hospitals, the share was about 40%.

    As for agrarian life, forget it. One of the staff of Co-operative Extension at Cornell told me (again, over a decade ago) that there were fewer than 700 farmers in that county with 70,000 people in it. The displaced dairy farmer working in my office was pretty plain about it: the economics of agriculture have rendered it impossible for any but the most skilled and meticulous to make a living at it. It tore him up to sell his cows, but the milk business has very slim profit margins.

  • The Titanic metaphor is actually reasonably compelling, and a far better argument than the “one of the greatest forces for evil.” Hubris and blindness are indeed driving us to a precipice, as surely as J. Bruce Ismay made sure the jewel of the White Star Line was going at top speed.

    But that makes Ismay (and Smith, and Murdoch, et al) tragic figures, not inherently malevolent. We should look at the potential ruin of America the same way Augustine faced the ruin of Western Rome–as a tragedy, and an evil in itself.

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  • Joe interesting remark about Lila Rose. I have not heard that anywhere else and I think it deserves some further exploration. Kudos

  • Zach, I actually wrote a post about it a long time ago here. But now might be a good time to write a new one. Perhaps this evening.

  • “I have a good many Christian friends and associates who are leaving the city to live in the country…”

    My husband and I did that once, for about 3 years. It was very nice in some ways — we had fruit trees and I taught myself how to can fruit and vegetables.

    However, several things made it eventually unsustainable — namely, the fact that in order to pay the mortgage and property taxes and keep food on the table, at least one of us had to have a full time job that required a lengthy commute each day. This meant spending lots and lots of money on gas and car maintenance, not to mention on home maintenance and repair.

    As Art pointed out, very few people can make a living at farming anymore. Unless you are successfully self-employed and able to work from home, rural living these days can be more expensive in many ways than city living.

    Today I’d rather live in the city if for no other reason than I don’t have to be totally dependent on owning a car — I can walk or use public transportation if necessary. As for growing one’s own food — a valuable skill in a time of rising food prices — many cities now offer community gardens in which one can participate.

    It is true that rural areas tend to suffer less violent crime, but that doesn’t mean they are totally immune. For example, the worst recent mass murder in Central Illinois — in which a married couple and three of their children were killed and a fourth child seriously maimed — happened not in a major city but in a tiny rural village of less than 500 residents. Plus, when violent crime or other disasters (fires, car accidents, medical emergencies, etc.) do occur, it takes longer for first responders to arrive and longer to get to a hospital or other place of safety.

  • As for the main premise/question posed by this post: of course America is and has been a force for BOTH evil and good, just like any other country made up of fallen and sinful human beings.

    And where else are you going to go that’s better? The only truly pro-life and Catholic country I can think of is Malta, but since it’s a tiny island in the Mediterranean, good luck trying to emigrate there or find a place to live (unless you can somehow wheedle an appointment as ambassador, of course).

    As for political parties, I think there is a middle ground between insisting that Catholics should ALWAYS vote Democrat and insisting that they can NEVER vote Democrat under pain of mortal sin. I end up voting Republican about 95 percent of the time anyway due to the fact that most (not all) Democrats tend to be pro-abort. However, I don’t think this is an ideal situation and I hate to see the Church or the pro-life movement become totally beholden to one political party.

    I think we should love our country (and our state and community) the same way we love our families and friends: not because they are perfect, incorruptible, sinless or always right, but just because they are ours.

  • I do not agree with the sickening leftism and liberalism of Vox Nova or any of its comrades in the false gospel of social justice and peace at any price. I do believe that the United States was founded as a Christian Constitutional Republic and was once a good nation. But as long as we murder unborn babies as the right to choose, sanctify the filth of sodomy as equal rights, create and distribute pornography as freedom of speech, and commit general outright idolatry, then we can expect God’s wrath. In a way, the terror and horror of the Civil War was God’s wrath against the sin of slavery, and I predict that the liberals will never let go of abortion until that horrible event of five years in the 19th century repeats itself in the 21st. I do not want that to happen. I do not advocate that. But the satanic liberalism that Vox Nova ingratiates itself with leaves no other alternative except that the Lord Himself returns to Earth first. Jews in concentration camps in WWII were not freed till Germany had been devastated by the Allies. Unborn babies in their mothers’ wombs will not be protected till liberalism is likewise defeated in these United States. Let us hope and pray that happens WITHOUT the bloodshed of either liberals or conservatives. But history says otherwise, especially as long as godless liberals continue their demonic murderous spree against the unborn.

  • “As for political parties, I think there is a middle ground between insisting that Catholics should ALWAYS vote Democrat and insisting that they can NEVER vote Democrat under pain of mortal sin. I end up voting Republican about 95 percent of the time anyway due to the fact that most (not all) Democrats tend to be pro-abort. However, I don’t think this is an ideal situation and I hate to see the Church or the pro-life movement become totally beholden to one political party.

    I think we should love our country (and our state and community) the same way we love our families and friends: not because they are perfect, incorruptible, sinless or always right, but just because they are ours.”


  • Nate, that policy [abortion] was imposed on our elected officials by our frigging judges.

    True, but it could not have been sustained for nearly 40 years without the acquiessence of a siginificant segment of the culture at large.

  • I was aware Katherine that MM is an Irish import. Considering that he endorsed Obama in a has-to-be-read-to-be-believed post on VN, I assumed that he had become a naturalized American citizen.

    So in a public forum, you falsely accused someone of election fraud (a felony) based on a wrong assumption* on your part. I missed the retraction and apology, but based on your inaccurate comments, I’m probably done reading what you write.

    * When you ‘assume’ you make an ..

  • Katherine I will miss your readership in much the same way I miss my most recent kidney stone. Go elsewhere in your attempt to create mountains out of molehills and avoid discussing the actual topics of the posts. Don’t get weary dragging those red herrings.

  • Its those red herrings which may one wonder about whether Vox Nova and their like are truly against abortion. When you spend so much effort to avoid denouncing their favorite political party, one is likely to think so.

    An example:


  • It looks like my last post didn’t make it. Anyway, any thoughts on the Protect Life Act Donald? May make a post of it. Then we can see if VN will actually condemn some dems.

  • Retrieved your comment from the spam file Philip. If a comment has a link in it, Akismet usually thrusts it there. In the post you linked to Sam Rocha was being satirical, although much of what he wrote has been said seriously by various other Vox Nova contributors over the years. Vox Nova, with certain honorable examples, tends to be the home of individuals who would sooner eat ground glass than give aid or comfort to the conservatives or the Gop. If that means they have to studiously ignore abortion, they will. This does not apply to all Vox Nova contributors past or present, but that is the general tone of the blog.

    The Protect Life Act is a wonderful move by the GOP, as can be seen by the hysteria of leftist and pro-abort blogs in regard to it. Sam Rocha’s snide attitude when you asked him in the comment thread about the Act is typical of VN. If a Republican proposed it, best to go on the offense. Well done Philip! Rocha writes a satircal thread and you get him to go into protect the left mode, thereby undermining what he was attempting to establish by his post.

  • Thanks. I understand that Sam was being satirical though I was hoping he would be honest enough to admit that the Democrats are supporting evil in opposing the Protect Life Act. I guess I was misguided.

    As I said earlier, I think this is why some hold that VN is not “sufficiently” pro-life. I suspect for some there, one can cut out “sufficiently.”

  • I knew you realized it Philip and I salute the skill by which you undermined the satire. Really, someone should instruct Mr. Rocha that posts are wasted effort if the author disproves them in subsequent combox debate.

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  • So, Joe H., do you also oppose the use of undercover police?

  • Okay, so the questioning of Lila Rose, I get it, I guess. She didn’t break any laws, but was it ethical for her to go undercover (since that is what investigative journalists do?)
    Was it ethical for undercover journalists to expose widespread corruption in Chicago? Like in this story…http://www.time.com/time/magazine/article/0,9171,919328,00.html. So I guess the bigger question is “Is undercover investigative journalism ethical?” There is the ethical conundrum of whether the ends justify the means. If a journalist uncovers information that needs to be brought to the attention of the public, does that therefore justify the clandestine methods used to obtain that information? The concern is that the deceit on the part of the journalist sullies the critical information that is uncovered. Does a journalist dampen his credibility through the use of lies and chicanery?
    Journalism that relies on active deception and, more typically,passive’ misrepresentation to acquire information must satisfy at least the following three professional ethical requirements. First, the information pursued must be directly and strongly linked to a larger social purpose. Secondly, the public value of such information must clearly outweigh the injury caused by the deception and the privacy violation. Thirdly, undercover methods must not be resorted to where the information can be gathered by straightforward means. I would say Lila Rose met all of these requirements. The EVIL of Planned Parenthood far outweighs the deceit of her investigators.

Margaritaville Christianity; God's Way Or Our Way?

Wednesday, July 28, AD 2010

As Europe emerged from the Dark Ages, a growing populace happy for good news and grateful for these positive turn of events in their lives openly and without apology made the Catholic faith the center of their lives. They believed in the Word of God, even if they couldn’t read or write. They hung on to every word of those who could read. Even during the workday, if at all possible those working in the fields would briefly slip into town to see the priest raise the Host during the Consecration at Mass. Though their lives were full of toil and often misery (they weren’t allowed the liberty of attending daily Mass) the people of this era used any opportunity they could to make religion a part of their daily life.

Fast forward a thousand years and we can certainly see that daily life has shifted some 180 degrees. Many of the elite often snicker or poke fun at those who are serious about their faith. Even those who are considered serious in their faith pursuit, often hide the true extent of their faith, for fear of being called a holy roller.

The secular talking heads tell us that we should be more like the modern world we are trying to help and change. Religion should be more like the popular culture they tell us. We should try to glean words of wisdom from thinkers like Voltaire, Marx, Freud and Alinsky and entertainers like Madonna, Lady Gaga or even Jimmy Buffet. Yet, have these secular talking heads ever taken their own advice? Have these leftists ever thought, “why was Pope John Paul II, Ronald Reagan or Margaret Thatcher so popular? What could we learned from them? “ (For more on this read my column, If You Like What The Political Left Has Done To Politics, Look At What The Religious Left Has Done To Religion (Left It In Tatters) along with my article, The Construct of Rebellion.

Some might say wasn’t Jesus somewhat of a cultural outcast, like modern day pop culture figures? Well Jesus certainly enjoyed some fun; otherwise he wouldn’t have been at the wedding feast performing his first miracle by turning water into wine no less. However, he was hardly the type of person that endorsed the “its Five o Clock somewhere lifestyle.” He forgave the woman caught in adultery, but told her to “sin no more.” Incidentally, she probably had more clothes on than some who show up at church on Sunday. However, that’s another story.

Our educated world makes excuses for the behavior of those pop stars like Lady Gaga who make edgy and sacrilegious videos and show up in public (at the New York Yankees club house) clad only in undergarments. Those illiterate peoples that lived in Europe one thousand years ago were smart enough to know that despite the corruption they knew existed in the Church, they were far better off listening to the Teachings of the Church than the whims of the world in which they lived. They and their forbearers had witnessed violent feudal warlords that had plunged Europe into centuries of horrific darkness; a darkness that we face today if we listen to the sirens of militant secularism who want us to return to the dying days of Rome.

We often forget it was in those dying days of Rome that many of the elites longed for the days of their elders, when Christianity was outlawed and orgies were commonplace at homes of the movers and shakers of Roman high society, and violent spectacles took place at the coliseum. Today their descendants are gaga over the likes of Lady Gaga, and treat abortion as if it were some sort of coming of age ritual.

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20 Responses to Margaritaville Christianity; God's Way Or Our Way?

  • It’s odd you pick Margaritaville for the title of this post. As you may recall, the lyrics are a not so subtle progression of the singer realizing/admitting that his woes are due to his own fault. A confession, at least, if not a full repentance. That is closer to Christianity than many of the other things you (rightly) point out.

  • If anything, Margaritaville strikes me more as a purgatory than heaven.

  • Matt, the reason I selected Margaritaville as the title was due to the e-mail I received from the woman I mentioned in the article. There really is no disrespect intended to Jimmy Buffett, only to those who look at the mythical Margaritaville as some sort heavenly location. As I indicated in the article, I enjoy Jimmy Buffett’s music and not only have some of his cd’s, but even some albums and dare I say 8 tracks! I agree with you that the lyrics to Margaritaville, as well as others like Son of A Sailor and Come Monday are more introspective than some might otherwise assume.

  • 8 tracks!! Do you still have the equipment to play them?

  • Too bad the pastor likened heaven to Maragaritaville. Although there is plenty of material in the Bible and Church history itself to work with, if he had to use Margaritaville, seems he could have done a much better job focusing on its introspection. But then, I assume this pastor of a mega-church probably does not believe in Purgatory, which would have been a more appropriate comparison.

    I am personally not a big fan of trying to use contemporary pop culture to illuminate Church teaching (particularly since most of pop culture is garbage) but I suppose it can be done with the rare gems that are around and by someone who truly understands what he is doing.

  • My old stereo, complete with 8 Trak died years ago, but I do have a friend that has an operable 8 Trak player (sort of!)

    As for the entertainment based mega churches, I do believe it is the last stopping off point for Catholics & Evangelicals on their way to total isolation from recognizable faith practices. While we have lost too many Catholics to these churches, Evangelicals are in even worse shape as many of their flock have left serious churches for entertainment based mega churches, never to return to an open practice of their faith. One only need look at small towns in rural America where beautiful old mainline churches seemed weathered and beaten, because many left them after their theology and social views took a sharp left turn in the 1970s. The next stop for these folks was often the non denominational church, followed by the entertainment based mega church. When all the bells and whistles were exhausted, many went home.

    Joel Osteen and even Rick Warren have had to make special financial appeals. This reminds me of an e-mail I received shortly after my book, “The Tide is Turning Toward Catholicism came out.” Someone e-mailed me as to how exciting Joel Osteen’s services were, and then went on to poke fun at the “boring Catholic Mass,” or so they thought. The e-mailer concluded, “we have fireworks after our service, do you?” I was tempted to say, “not even at gunpoint.” However, I thought that perhaps some liberal Catholic parish might have done this so I held off.

  • This is funny – a few years ago I walked into a liberal Catholic church and was greeted by a huge picture of what looked like to me as Jesus the beach bum. I dubbed it “Jesus of Margaritaville.”

  • Wow Jane that’s wild. My view about liberal Catholic churches is once you think you have seen it all, something like this pops up. Once on vacation, I remember hearing a priest give a homily in which I wasn’t sure if he was talking about Jesus or Jerry Garcia of the Grateful Dead. However, judging from his tie dye vestements, maybe he thought they were one in the same.

    For the longest time the liberal establishment shunned the mega churches for they perceived them to be part of conservative America. However, following the news that some of the same mega churches that went heavily for GW Bush in 2004 went for Barack Obama in 2008. Now it seems these mega churches aren’t all bad to the discerning liberal in mainstream media or his liberal Catholic follower.

  • Great article. I get frustrated when I read in the news about “Catholics” who want to change our faith and interpret the gospels to their own liking. I think it comes down to obedience. These “teens” have never grown up. You can’t tell them what to think, how to dress, who their friends should be, etc. Plus they are just lying to themselves about the good they are doing when actually they are causing great harm.

  • This morning three young girls in tee-shirts and short shorts took up the offeratory. But normally it seems it is the older men who mostly wear shorts to church. And here in the mountains, you would not think you would find attire more suited to the beach but you do.

    Yes, I have had the sad experience of a world traveler pastor who with his men friends went to Hawaii beaches, Las Vegas, etc. He decorated the church with a bunch of hanging fabric and told us how Jesus ate and drank Hiw way through the Gospels and how we are to enjoy life ‘abuntandly’. He dog has been at the altar and jumped in the baptismal pond during a baptism once. Everyone seems to find it amusing as well as the sometimes off color jokes. One finds mroe reverence and a non=denom entertainment church sometimes.

    Considering the lack of catechesis for 40 years and the ‘liberal’ (unfaithful) bishops who stay in power until either age or the civil authorities remove them, it is something that a remnant remains. But then our church WILL last until the end of time, irregardless of what we sinners do.

  • Very interesting article and comments. I have spent the better part of the last 15 years writing letters to priests, bishops, “Catholic” newspapers, etc., and in general making myself persona non grata to those in my home parish and diocese in New York. Be that as it may, I certainly didn’t write to become popular or well-liked, merely to beg them to consider that they may be failing those of us on the other side of the altar, and how hungry we were for something more than they were offering. What should one do in these instances? I remember that we are called to humility, to refrain from judging others, but when we sit week after week, listening to wishy-washy homilies, never hearing enough about the fact that we are sinners, struggling, or authentic Catholic teaching, seeing EM’s step into the sanctuary in shorts, sloppy pedal pushers, tee shirts, short skirts, skimpy tops, etc., and young people in skirts that barely covers their buttocks, or short shorts, taking up the collection, etc., and you just sit there thinking “what is wrong with people”. Well, here’s what’s wrong….as was mentioned previously, a whole generation of Catholics who were not properly catechized, who are now raising children, who, through no fault of their own, don’t get it. How do you undo years of weak-kneed, spineless bishops, (not all but some) who were more concerned with the bottom line, their standing in the community at large, etc., then to be shepherds to their flocks? How to undo this? It has taken every ounce of self-control I could muster to keep silent, when I sit a row behind a female EM, with a husband couple of young children with her, as she chews gum all throughout Mass, only to get up onto the altar to give us Communion, and she in tight “walking shorts”, and sleeveless tops….I should not have to be distracted from my prayer by this, nor feel the urge to say something to her about her manner of dress or her gum chewing….that should come from the pastor, but needless to say the pastor at this particular church in the diocese of Raleigh, NC, is more concerned with being well-liked and thinking what a great parish he’s got and how wonderful he is, and singing his homily every Christmas at midnight Mass, projecting every baptism, at every Mass, onto the ceiling of the Church, and parading each baby held in the air, up and down the aisles; its all about bells and whistles, and so not about the state of our souls, or a deepening of our spirituality. At 60 years of age, I have almost given up hope, I attend Mass, but look for nothing from it besides the Eucharist, and fullfilment of my obligation, and I watch my grown children, who were raised to love the faith, with reverence and respect, wonder what in the world is going on here, what has happened to the Catholic church. I realize more than ever, we are pretty much out here on our own, and we should learn not to depend upon anyone other than Christ himself.

  • David, the article is a bit long….the problem range from having the cake and eating it too…to Catholics having an identity crisis…they want to identify with the world and its spirit, they don’want to abandon self and self-interest, they do not want to acknowledge their faults and
    sinfulness, they don’t want to imitate Christ nor do they want to imitate Mary the Mother of God. Once all the interior spirituality is suck out of the soul they are left with this empty hull, a graceless void, that will now be filled with the errors of modernisms…dead, dried branches separated from the vine…good for nothings other than to burn. What is the remedy: renewal of theit baptismal vow through consecration to Mary, returning to sacraments of confession for starter…limit your worship at institutions with the 4 legitimate marks of Christ’s True Church: One, Holy, Catholic and Apostolic…and upholds the pillars of Faith via: Holy Scripture, the Magesterium, and Oral Tradition. These duplicious, heretics hide behind the rubrics of the Catholic Church do so much harm.

  • Interesting post. I left the Roman Catholic Church for the Byzantine Catholic Church because of the abuses in the liturgy. After suffering liturgical dances, heretical (and unsingable) hymns, invented eucharistic prayers, sermons on the need for “vacations”, extraordinary ministers of communion handing out the Eucharist like mere crackers (without reverence or knowledge of what they were doing) I couldn’t take it anymore. The Lord led me to the local Byzantine Rite Church — I thought I’d died and gone to heaven.
    I was raised in the Latin Rite, but the Novus Ordo is pure torture to me now. Give me a Tridentine Liturgy or the Liturgy of St. John Chrysostom/St Basil any day over the watered down liturgy of the Novus Ordo. It’s no wonder that so many Catholics have left the Church in the last 40 years. We’ve been wandering in the desert for that long. I only hope the Latin Rite will reform itself and go back to the Tridentine mass. There was (and is) nothing like it for worshiping the immutable, omnipotent God.

  • These souls move from one pleasure to the next and pay heed to whomever tickles their ears. Suffering and sacrifice has no value, consider something to avoid at all costs, and an annoyance and an inconvenience. This darkness makes them foolish and blind for if they encounter a faithful soul’s correction their either mock, flee, ignore, or take offense…and always always always attack the church, its priests, its Pope and its Teachings, and Scandalize the souls of the faithful first, the innocent second, and the ignorant last…they are the poison arrows and darts hurl at the Church from within. To often the impact of these individuals are minimized to sighs and complaints while casualties of souls occurs because of them. They have trully loss their Catholicity…its a wonderment why do they stay…

  • I’ve worshipped with the Byzantine Mass very, very beautiful…what stuck me most is the humilty of responses and acknowledgement of one sinfulness and repeated prayers for mercy and forgiveness from God…the entire Mass is sung…I will stay with the Latin Rite but my second love is the Byzantine…I hear a Maronite rite will be coming to my city soon…I hope to experience that Mass soon…it is wonderful the beauty of the different rites in union with the Pope and these poor soul forgo this beauty to attend non-denominational gyms.

  • The mention of the Sisters of St. Mary in Ann Arbor brings to mind the recent salutatorian speech in Latin, which wowed the crowd, by a Harvard grad who will be joining the convent. Perhaps Lady Gaga draws a bigger response, but we all know where the path that is wide and easy leads to.

  • Mr. Hartline,

    I admittedly only skimmed your article due to its length. However, I have to heartily and emphatically disagree with you about something you said in the last paragraph ‘There’s nothing wrong with having a cold one or listening to Jimmy Buffet’. The second part of this sentence is where I take issue. I too rather enjoyed Jimmy Buffet. But not too long ago, I made a conscious effort to throw away every last tape and CD of his I owned into the trash. The reason? Buffet promotes rampant promiscuity, lewdness, and drunkeness in many of his songs. As I’m sure you’ll agree, this is completely antithetical to our Catholic faith and morality. It may be ‘fun’ music, of which I listened to it for many years, but it ultimately debases the dignity of women and the beauty of sexual intimacy as God intended between husband and wife. God bless you.

  • Great article and comments! Dave, I used to read The Catholic Report almost every day and I loved your writings there! You might remember that I’m the blind guy who works in Christian radio and we used to correspond occasionally. I know you have good reasons for discontinuing The Catholic Report, but I hope that God will lead you to bring it back someday.

    As usual, your comments are right on target and I agree completely. That’s why I love priests like Father John Corapi. I wish there were more priests like him at our parishes. I would love for Father Corapi to speak at the National Prayer Breakfast or a similar event. Unfortunately, we had to endure Obama’s liberal secular rants and Secretary of State Clinton really made my blood boil when she spoke! Can all of you imagine what it would be like if Father Corapi spoke at one of these events? The way he and others like him preach the truth would make a lot of people squirm but more importantly, it might lead to some conversions.

  • Victor, so good to read your comments. I remember you well. I pray for you and all of the fine folks who were apart of the Catholic Report. Life keeps me busy with faith, family, employment and writing articles. The fact that the so many people are upset at the Church shows that the Church is doing what is necessary. We stumbled for a while, but as with other times in Church History the stumbles are often followed with great bursts of faithful evangelization.

  • I agree with the poster who threw out his buffett cd’s. He is an ex-Catholic and often ridicules the church and specifically altar boys. His music is a scourge that has taken millions down the wrong path in life. He even idiotically blamed bush for the recent gulf oil spill.