In Cleveland: Church – 1, Satan – 0

It’s Wonderful – with a capital ‘W’ – to be able to write  an article like this, thanking a bishop for doing the right thing.

Thomas J. Allio Jr., retired senior director of the Cleveland Diocesan Social Action Office, has penned an op-ed that appears today in the Cleveland Plain Dealer that is probably intended to raise some eyebrows. The op-ed is highly critical of Bishop Richard Lennon for his decision to forbid all parishes from participating in meetings of the Greater Cleveland Congregations.

Mr. Allio writes:

To date, there has been no public explanation regarding the lack of diocesan support.

Hmmm. Well, Mr. Allio, I cannot speak for any bishop, but this article from earlier this month in the Cleveland Plain Dealer offers a whole boatload of clues. I’ll excerpt the biggest red flag, but do read the whole thing. I mean, my goodness.

Ari Lipman, a longtime community organizer, has helped start similar groups around the country through his work with the Industrial Areas Foundation.

Get a Clue

Industrial Areas Foundation? Well, there’s your main problem right there, Mr. Allio.

I recommend …..

A Commentary on the Industrial Areas Foundation

The IAF founder’s admiration of Lucifer (Satan) should be a red flag plenty big enough to see, but there’s far more, as you can see for yourself.

Clue for Catholics: Satan’s way is the bad way. The way of the Church is the way of Christ…not of Satan. Got it?

Thank you, Bishop Lennon, for understanding the dangers that such things pose for your flock and for advising them appropriately to steer clear of these groups. Perhaps other (non-Catholic) pastors in Cleveland will be encouraged by your example and do the same. I trust that they, like we Catholics, are far more interested in God than in Lucifer, right?!?! Of course they are!

Oh, look! It appears to me that Bishop Lennon has come up with a better way for Catholics in the Diocese of Cleveland to address social ills. If I were in Bishop Lennon’s diocese and wanted to explore social justice ministry, I would definitely be looking into the “Rooted in Faith, Forward in Hope” program. That sounds exciting! I, for one, am rejoicing.

God bless Bishop Richard Lennon and all the Catholics of Cleveland.





What The Week Long LeBron James Ego Charade Can Tell Us About The State Of the World, As Well As The Catholic Church

UPDATE  Check Back On Monday To See What Time The Scheduled Appearance On The Al Kresta Show Will Take Place. Al Kresta Is Heard On EWTN Radio ( Over 100 Affiliate Stations) Check Your Local Listings Or Click Here To Listen Live

The LeBron James saga was particularly painful for those of us who live in Ohio and are Cavaliers fans. However a cursory glance at some of the national columnist’s reaction, to the week-long ego charade broadcasted by ESPN, gives me hope that many others have seen through this smoke screen as well. (Check these columns here here and  here.) What we witnessed Thursday night and the excuses made for it, along with sucking up by some of the national powers that be, gives us some insight on a world full of instant gratification and the desire to party on in South Beach, rather than roll up their sleeves in places like Cleveland. Talk about a metaphor for the Catholic Church.

For years now many faithful orthodox minded Catholics have painfully watched friends and loved ones leave the Catholic Church for either the local hoopty do mega church (Mother Angelica’s words,) or for no church at all, claiming they needed to feel better. They didn’t like a Church who couldn’t get with the times, had too many sinners in the pulpit, or talked to much about sin and not enough about heaven. Perhaps the LeBron James fiasco has given us the perfect recipe for what we should do; give it right back to them.

I grew in a small town (or city depending upon your classification) full of hard working class folks (and farmers who came into town from the outlying areas) where flowery words were few and far between and one would be easily called out for his actions. Now we all know the Church has had some difficult times in the last few years. However, this is because we wanted to be liked, instead of doing it God’s way, whether that was politically correct or not.

Today we have a new crop of orthodox-minded young seminarians, priests and women religious who are pious, but not above calling people out concerning their phony excuses for not taking their Faith more serious by not practicing it, or leaving it all together. In my book, The Tide is Turning Toward Catholicism, I outline the increase in vocations, especially in dioceses which are more openly orthodox in their approach. The Father McBrien’s and Kung’s of the world are being replaced by younger versions of Father Corapi and Father Pacwa. Though these two priests have different approaches, they are not above calling out the phony reality show world we often seem to celebrate in our culture and religion. Continue reading

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