PopeWatch: Knights of Columbus

Tuesday, June 6, AD 2017



Sandro Magister takes a look at the financial support given by the Knights of Columbus to Vatican communications:


At the end of this month of June it will be seen whether the Knights of Columbus in the United States will for another year dispense 100,000 dollars for “Vatican Insider,” the religious information site that is most closely connected to Pope Francis through its coordinator Andrea Tornielli, a friend of Jorge Mario Bergoglio since long before he was elected to the papacy and still his frequent visitor.

“Vatican Insider” is a creature of the Turin-based newspaper “La Stampa,” where Tornielli is the vaticanista, and is still published on the web platform of this daily. But since July 1 of 2014 it has been kept alive precisely through the annual support of 100,000 dollars supplied by the Knights of Columbus and until now renewed at each expiration.

The man who holds the keys of this donation is Thomas Smith Jr., executive director of the Knights of Columbus and second in command of the organization, right after supreme knight Carl Anderson (in the photo). They are both convinced that keeping “Vatican Insider” alive is a desire of Pope Francis himself, and feel the need to show their obedience and devotion to him in this way as well.

The reputation of the Knights of Columbus is in fact by no means in line with the novelties of the current pontificate. It should suffice to look at the recent portrait of the Knights in somber, ultraconservative tones drawn by the “National Catholic Reporter,” a leader of the progressive American Catholic media, in a series of highly documented articles that is summarized in this, the last:

> Editorial: Knights’ monetary influence skews our church

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7 Responses to PopeWatch: Knights of Columbus

  • Pingback: Canon212 Update: Flatterer, Hypocrite, Pharisee, Ideologue, Killer, Personality-Wrecker, Ruinous Judge, Serpent, Deceiver! – The Stumbling Block
  • In the corrupt pontificate of Pope Francis the Knights need to make distinctions in their giving. But I doubt they will. Like most everyone in the Catholic Church ‘go along, get along’ is the mantra.

  • bergoglio is an evil pope – a supporter of divorce and sacrilege – pretending they are ‘annulments’ – that is hypocrisy

  • Looks like KofC is careful and decent.Prudence is a virtue that seems so rare now when discernment is a real chore.
    Also I want to mention that I appreciate the “popewatch” posts – also careful and decent.
    I love, and have a protective concern for our Catholic faith and our Catholic people – so keeping abreast of what is “out there” is vital to carrying my little lantern forward.

  • I must disagree with the various assessments made in this article. Crux is a very liberal publication and NCR would be termed conservative only by the far left. Of course, the discussion of all issues is skewed in the public debate in exactly this manner, but it is still useful to make note of the fact, for the record.

  • The Knights are one of the few reliable and fully trustworthy direct-relief funding sources for Middle East Christians, esp. those in Syria, with a very low cost of overhead.

    You can read their strikingly stark statistics on the crucifixion of Syrian, mostly Melkite and Antiochene, but also Chaldean, Catholics at their website, kofc.org. The Knights sponsored a fundraiser and discussion in Campbell, CA last summer that renders other causes pale by comparison. Whether these other mostly useless news organizations survive is mostly irrelevant, when place alongside what continues on a daily basis in Syria and Iraq.

    By the way you can give monthly to the KOC Middle-Eastern Relief fund online, at their website. They send you an annual tax deductible statement also.

  • Pearl- very good point about needing to point those out!
    I think you misread the mention of NCR a bit, though — I took it to mean “NCReporter, which is the leftwing Catholic paper, did a report styling the Knights as arch-conservatives.”
    I had to go back and double-check I hadn’t gotten confused and missed a mention of the Register, which you very accurately described. 😀

PopeWatch: Merchants of Death

Monday, June 5, AD 2017

One of the more distressing aspects of this Pontificate is how firmly Pope Francis believes things that simply are not true.  A prime example of this is his oft repeated contention that most wars are caused by arms merchants, the old “merchants of death” theory of international conflict.

This was a fairly common meme in the thirties of the last century when it was argued with a straight face, in the wake of World War I disenchantment and the growth of pacifism in the democracies, that World War I had been caused by arms dealers and by governments eager to profiteer from war.  Alas it was complete and utter rubbish and it is rubbish still.  Of course it is important to the Pope that wars be caused by sinister cabals of greedy men who initiate conflicts to make money.  This helps the Pope ignore the fact that most wars occur due to intractable differences between nations and people that are not amenable to negotiation.  Such reality does not fit into the Pope’s ideological world view, and when reality comes into conflict with what the Pope believes, so much the worse for reality.  Such a refusal to face facts can be harmful for an individual, it is disastrous for the Vicar of Christ.

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17 Responses to PopeWatch: Merchants of Death

  • Automobile manufacturer’s… watch out!


    I hope it’s not an American made van.
    ( Gun’s don’t kill people….Van’s do. )
    Meanwhile. Prayers for the injured are forthcoming.

    Prayers continuing for our Pope.
    God help him.

  • The problem with liberals is that they actually believe all that leftist crap.

    Seen elsewhere some liberal is hugely concerned that the US (Thank God) still has 8,600 nuclear weapons. No mention is made of the nuclear weapons others have.

  • Wars happen because people do not/will not convert to Christ, and this current crop of Church princes seems fine with not spreading the news that Jesus is the Way, the Life, and the Truth. Jesus ought to know how things Ought to Be because He was instrumental in their creation. If people just do what he says, thinfs will be much better here on Earth.
    I suspect the current chaos in the world is a direct result of broken marriages and broken families-polygamy in the Middle East, and “serial polygamy” in the West (and Asia).

  • Czar Nicholas II sent his soldiers onto the battlefield with on egun for every nine men. The idea was that when the first man fell, the gun was to be used by the second man and so forth. Death, war, famine and pestilence, the four Horsemen of the Apocalypse will only be stopped by Mary’s Holy Rosary.
    Pope Francis ought to be calling for and on his knees praying the Rosary

  • Mary De Voe.


  • Such reality does not fit into the Pope’s ideological world view,

    The American Universities Field Staff put together in 1963 a collection of essays on political economy abroad, including an assessment of Argentina. By the author’s account, the political culture of Argentina was such that civic life was conceived of as a zero-sum conflict over resources between the working-class and the bourgeoisie, with the winners expected to redistribute income to their clientele. This was the climate in which that man came of age, and it does not appear that anything that has happened in Argentina or anywhere else in the intervening years persuaded him that businessmen were anything but thieves conning people and stealing from them.

  • Pingback: Canon212 Update: Unity with FrancisChurch Sounds Like a Sin – The Stumbling Block
  • Well,I knew that when I heard that Frankie was wetting the papal panties over a bunch of bogus “global warming” computer models that he had finally snapped one mackerel too many

  • The generous donations to Peter’s Pence from Catholics in “war mongering”, capitalistic countries aren’t rejected by the Vatican.

  • Hopefully, there won’t be questions about the van’s motivation!?! The press might be concerned about people blaming extremist terrorist vans and becoming vanophobic!!! Later, they may have a meeting with all vans to talk about giving peace a chance, while singing superficial feel good pacifist peace loving ditties.

  • Pope off base as usual. We have an age old war going on right now: Islam against Christianity. The big problem is that most Christians, others, and especially Pope Francis don’t seem to know it is going on and don’t seem interested in finding out what it’s about. This is an indication of how dark the minds of Western man have become in the false Liberal attitude of political correctness. Niceness (feminization) is going to kill us all unless we face the truth about ourselves and our world. Let us pray to Our Lady of Fatima for insight and strength and especially for our misguided Pope.

  • Writing during WW1, G K Chesterton had this to say of Krupp, the great German arms manufacturer: “Now here comes in the real and sinister significance of Krupps. There are many capitalists in Europe as rich, as vulgar, as selfish, as rootedly opposed to any fellowship of the fortunate and unfortunate. But there is no other capitalist who claims, or can pretend to claim, that he has very appreciably helped the activities of his people in war. I will suppose that Lipton did not deserve the very severe criticisms made on his firm by Mr. Justice Darling; but, however blameless he was, nobody can suppose that British soldiers would charge better with the bayonet because they had some particular kind of groceries inside them. But Krupp can make a plausible claim that the huge infernal machines to which his country owes nearly all of its successes could only have been produced under the equally infernal conditions of the modern factory and the urban and proletarian civilisation. That is why the victory of Germany would be simply the victory of Krupp, and the victory of Krupp would be simply the victory of Capitalism. There, and there alone, Capitalism would be able to point to something done successfully for a whole nation—done (as it would certainly maintain) better than small free States or natural democracies could have done it. I confess I think the modern Germans morally second-rate, and I think that even war, when it is conducted most successfully by machinery, is second-rate war. But this second-rate war will become not only the first but the only brand, if the cannon of Krupp should conquer; and, what is very much worse, it will be the only intelligent answer that any capitalist has yet given against our case that Capitalism is as wasteful and as weak as it is certainly wicked. I do not fear any such finality, for I happen to believe in the kind of men who fight best with bayonets and whose fathers hammered their own pikes for the French Revolution.”

  • As usual when GK was writing on economics, he had no idea what he was talking about.

  • I refuse to buy and have refused to buy KRUPP coffeemakers. Capitalism in action. God’s Justice is as fine as gold. The longer it takes the finer it gets.

  • Pingback: Bergoglio contra el comercio de armas pero no contra los musulmanes que las empuñan para asesinar cristianos. – Laicos Unidos en Cristo.
  • “God’s Justice is as fine as gold. The longer it takes the finer it gets.” MDV.

    Damn girl…… that’s good.
    I’m a country bumpkin and don’t get out much so I must ask…..is that yours?
    Regardless. I like it. Great quote!

  • The saying may be in the Bible. My dad used it all the time.

PopeWatch: Ten Commandments, Revised Version

Saturday, June 3, AD 2017


From the only reliable source of Catholic news on the net, Eye of the Tiber:


Pope Francis on Monday warned against the excessive rigidity of the Ten Commandments and said “God gives us the freedom to search our own conscience for commandments.”

“I always try to understand what’s behind people who are too young to have seen Moses walk down from Mount Sinai with the Ten Commandments, and yet still they want to obey them,” Francis said. “Sometimes I find myself confronted with a very legalistic person who follows the Commandments and I ask myself, ‘Why so much rigidity?’ This rigidity in following the Commandments always hides something, insecurity or even something else.”

Pope Francis went on to say that, “Behind an attitude of always feeling like you must follow the rigidity of the Commandments there is something else in the life of a person. The Commandments are not a gift of God. The Beatitudes are because they are not a list of rules that stiffen us and make us rigid; they make us feel good.”

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7 Responses to PopeWatch: Ten Commandments, Revised Version

  • Parody, sarcasm and irony notwithstanding, those are Jorge Bergoglio’s Ten Commandments.

  • May be the holy Spirit gave us such a nut job for a pope to awaken us to the demonically fuleled relativism that has invaded the Church. St. Michael the Archangel, Defend us!

  • Mike C., I think it’s ” the Holy Spirit … Permitted … the Cardinals to select…. ”
    and you’re right. 🙂

  • Pope Francis needs emergency treatment from the Holy Spirit. Come quickly Holy Spirit and help poor Pope Francis. He seems confused and is confusing some of us.

  • The Commandments are not a gift of God. The Beatitudes are because they are not a list of rules that stiffen us and make us rigid; they make us feel good.” Is he not an ‘Antichrist’?

  • Wish I could ask him…”Does your interpretation mean we should “kind of” honor our father and mother?” … or more-or-less not steal???? I’d like to know who voted to elect this guy! How embarrassing

  • I’m really old and I pray that this is someone’s idea of a bad joke. Please say it’s not true I hate to think that this is what the Catholic church and our pope and leaders has become. God save us all!!!!!
    I’m really old and I hope that this is someone’s idea of a sick joke. I can’t believe that our pope would actually say something like this. This is very upsetting to the faithful followers of our lord Jesus Christ. Dear God help us please!!!!!

PopeWatch: Carlo Cardinal Caffarra

Friday, June 2, AD 2017


It is easy to be gloomy about the Faith when viewing the antics of the current powers that be in the Vatican.  However they are a mere aberration in the history of the Church.  The power and glory of Catholicism has survived worse than them over the past 20 centuries.  In a speech given last month Carlo Cardinal Caffarra, Archbishop Emeritus of Bologna, gave us a reminder of the battle we are currently engaged in:


There is a book in Holy Scripture, the last, the Apocalypse, which describes the final confrontation between the two kingdoms. In this book, the attraction of Christ takes the form of triumph over enemy powers commanded by Satan. It is a triumph which comes after lengthy combat. The first fruits of the victory are the martyrs. “The great Dragon, serpent of the primal age, he whom we call the devil, or Satan, seducer of the whole world, was flung down to earth… But they [= the martyrs] overcame him by the blood of the Lamb and by the word of the testimony of their martyrdom” [cfr. Ap. 12, 9.11].

  1. In this second section, I would like to respond to the following question: in our Western culture, are there developments which reveal with particular clarity the confrontation between the attraction exerted over man by the Crucified-Risen One, and the culture of the lie constructed by Satan? My response is affirmative, and there are two developments in particular.
  • The first development is the transformation of a crime [termed by Vatican Council II nefandum crimen], abortion, into a right. Note well. I am not speaking of abortion as an act perpetrated by one person. I am speaking of the broader legitimation which can be perpetrated by a judicial system in a single act: to subsume it into the category of the subjective right, which is an ethical category. This signifies calling what is good, evil, what is light, shadow. “When he lies, he speaks according to his own nature, for he is a liar and the father of lies”. This is an attempt to produce an “anti-Revelation”.

What in fact is the logic which presides over the ennoblement of abortion? Firstly, it is the profoundest negation of the truth of man. As soon as Noah left the floodwaters, God said: “Whoever sheds the blood of a man, by a man shall that person’s blood be shed, for in his own image God made man” [Gen. 9, 6]. The reason why man should not shed the blood of man is that man is the image of God. Through man, God dwells in His creation. This creation is the temple of the Lord, because man inhabits it. To violate the intangibility of the human person is a sacrilegious act against the Sanctity of God. It is the Satanic attempt to generate an “anti-creation”. By ennobling the killing of humans, Satan has laid the foundations for his “creation”: to remove from creation the image of God, to obscure his presence therein.

St Ambrose writes: “The creation of the world was completed with formation of the masterpiece which is man, which… is in fact the culmination of creation, the supreme beauty of every created being” [Exam., Sixth day, Disc 9, 10.75; BA I, page 417]. At the moment at which the right of man to order the life and the death of another man is affirmed, God is expelled from his creation, because his original presence is denied, and his original dwelling-place within creation – the human person – is desecrated

  • The second development is the ennoblement of homosexuality. This in fact denies entirely the truth of marriage, the mind of God the Creator with regard to marriage.

The Divine Revelation has told us how God thinks of marriage: the lawful union of a man and woman, the source of life. In the mind of God, marriage has a permanent structure, based on the duality of the human mode of being: femininity and masculinity. Not two opposite poles, but the one with and for the other. Only thus does man escape his original solitude.

One of the fundamental laws through which God governs the universe is that He does not act alone. This is the law of human cooperation with the divine governance. The union between a man and woman, who become one flesh, is human cooperation in the creative act of God: every human person is created by God and begotten by its parents. God celebrates the liturgy of his creative act in the holy temple of conjugal love.

In summary. There are two pillars of creation: the human person in its irreducibility to the material universe, and the conjugal union between a man and woman, the place in which God creates new human persons “in His image and likeness”. The axiological elevation of abortion to a subjective right is the demolition of the first pillar. The ennoblement of a homosexual relationship, when equated to marriage, is the destruction of the second pillar.

At the root of this is the work of Satan, who wants to build an actual anti-creation. This is the ultimate and terrible challenge which Satan is hurling at God. “I am demonstrating to you that I am capable of constructing an alternative to your creation. And man will say: it is better in the alternative creation than in your creation”.

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2 Responses to PopeWatch: Carlo Cardinal Caffarra

  • Addiction to sodomy and the vice of lust by two individuals who cannot unite, procreate or perform the marital act is irreverence for the human being made in the image of God in free will, rational soul and immortal. Destruction of man’s original innocence and the moral virtue of Justice is the imposition of atheism on the people by those who serve the public.

  • “The truth of Christ will prevail no matter of all the lies deployed by the Father of Lies and his minions, so be of good cheer.”

    Seems to me that common sense –a God given quality–would eventually win the day as people would decide there is a distinct competitive and survival advantage to having children in the face of a rapidly declining population brought about by abortion, homosexuality and contraception.

PopeWatch: Humanae Vitae Bye, Bye?

Thursday, June 1, AD 2017



Rumors are swirling about this:


Rumors are circulating that Pope Francis has set up a secret commission to “re-examine” the Church’s teaching against the evil of contraception. Let’s hope they prove false.

Such a commission under Francis’ leadership would likely undermine and even corrupt the Church’s beautiful teaching on the meaning and purpose of conjugal relations. 

We saw exactly this sort of undermining happen during the Synods on the Family. The pope’s final document, the ambiguous Amoris Laetitia, has been used to undermine the indissolubility of marriage, to approve of adulterous relationships, to give Holy Communion to adulterers and fornicators, and to elevate conscience above the laws of God as reflected in the perennial teachings of the Church. 

Earlier this month veteran Italian Vaticanist Marco Tosatti blogged about “unconfirmed reports from good sources” that Francis “is on the verge of appointing – or even might have already formed – a secret commission to examine and potentially study changes to the Church’s position on the issue of contraception.”

“We have so far no official confirmation of the existence and composition of this entity; but a request for confirmation, or for denial, which was put forward to the competent authorities, has so far not been answered – which could be a signal in itself – in the sense that, if the report was completely unfounded, it wouldn’t take much to say so,” Tosatti wrote on May 11. 

Tosatti’s claim of a secret commission has, of this writing, still not been confirmed or denied by Vatican officials. 

Six days later, in a May 17 article, OnePeterFive’s Maike Hickson reported that she was able to confirm Tosatti’s claim of a secret commission by a “well-informed source in Rome” who was, however,  unable to “give specific names of the members of that commission.”

My huge fear is that such a commission with Francis at the helm can only arrive at the conclusion, contrary to Catholic faith, that “pastoral accompaniment” of people in “concrete situations” means allowing them to “discern” the use of contraceptives in “serious” cases according to a “well-informed conscience.”

I hope I’m dead wrong. But my fear that the commission would reach such a conclusion is based on what Pope Francis has already said on various occasions about the matter of contraception. Here are a few samples of what he has said that make me so worried:

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12 Responses to PopeWatch: Humanae Vitae Bye, Bye?

  • None of this should surprise us. Until heretic Jorge Bergoglio is deposed and anathematized, this will continue.

  • Well, if Paul VI didn’t change the teaching, despite the recommendations of his commission (and probably his own personal desires), the Holy Ghost will not allow Francis to do it either.

  • Under this pontificate if I were the Holy Spirit I would be asking God the Father for a pay increase.

  • Paul VI did change the teaching. HV put the procreative and unitive ends of the conjugal act on equal footing. Prior to that, the procreative end was primary.

  • If so, that P Frank has now set his gunsights on Humanae Vitae, it is the same breathless destructions and deconstruction he inaugurated with the Franciscan Friars of the Immaculate, the Vatican commissions, and the many bishops he has appointed of questionable quality.

    By the way, the latest that was brought to my attention if “Bp.” William Wack (what’s in a name) of Pensacola-Tallahassee, seen here sporting his rainbow prayer shawl, and later on his pink LGBT alliance chasuable:
    One thing about Frankenchurch, it is decidedly “in your face.”

  • That’s s disgusting picture. Something tells me it is photoshopped.

  • I doubt Pope Francis will flatly contradict Humane Vitae. What we will get is an Amoris Laetitia treatment with the “good stuff” found in the footnotes. Pope Francis motto is “Read my footnotes”.

  • It is likely to be a wink and nod at the many priests who have done this since the 1950s or even before. Thew same genuflection to the world that allowed kings to have their concubines as well as wives.

  • On recalls the Winnipeg Statement on HV, issued by the Canadian bishops in 1968, which “recognized that “a certain number of Catholics”, in spite of being bound by the encyclical, find it “either extremely difficult or even impossible to make their own all elements of this doctrine”. These “should not be considered, or consider themselves, shut off from the body of the faithful. But they should remember that their good faith will be dependent on a sincere self-examination to determine the true motives and grounds for such suspension of assent and on continued effort to understand and deepen their knowledge of the teaching of the Church.” It added that “the confessor or counsellor must show sympathetic understanding and reverence for the sincere good faith of those who fail in their effort to accept some point of the encyclical.”

  • After 20 years of being in love with what the Church Teaches, never hearing anything from the parish pulpit, all I can say is…
    Thank God, it means the end is near.

  • The martyrs in heaven are not buying this wide open gate to hell.

  • If this manifests itself as being true, then the gloves are truly off, and the probability grows that we’re headed toward an open schism in fact, beyond the one that arguably already exists in effect. Dubia Cardinals, call your office; there’s a rogue Pope in the house.

PopeWatch: Hmmm

Wednesday, May 31, AD 2017


This homily by Pope Francis yesterday is attracting attention:


“A shepherd must be ready to step down completely from his church, rather than leave in a partial manner” said the Pope.

His words were drawn from the first reading at Mass, where St Paul addressed the church leaders in Ephesus.  The Pope said that this reading could easily be called “A bishop’s leave taking” because Paul has left the Church of Ephesus in order to go to Jerusalem, where the Holy Spirit called him to go.

“All shepherds have to step down. There comes a moment where the Lord says ‘go to another place, come here, go there, come to me.’ And it’s one of the steps that a shepherd must take; be prepared to step down in the correct way, not still hanging on to his position. The shepherd who doesn’t learn how to do this because he still has some links with his sheep that are not good, links that are not purified by the Cross of Jesus” said Pope Francis.


Go here to read the rest.  Is this a signal?  Is Pope Francis signaling his own retirement?  Is he signaling dissatisfaction with the Pope Emeritus?  Is it not a signal but merely an exegesis from the reading?  How say you?

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13 Responses to PopeWatch: Hmmm

  • “…links that are not purified by the Cross of Jesus.”

    Going to read the rest now, but this morsel is interesting.

  • My take is that there are no retirement plans for our Francis. He is not broadcasting his future. Gut feelings​ only.

    However I would not be surprised to see major changes with appointments within the Vatican and outside as well. I wonder if he IS broadcasting change?

  • I do not think that this is an expression of his intent but of his frustration that so many conservative bishops hang on until mandatory retirement. It is not unlike a President’s frustration with Justicies hanging on to avoid his nomination of ideological opponents.

  • Hopefully he is speaking about himself, but given his personality he is most likely slamming Benedict XVI.

  • With regard to the bishops of the west, the term “conservative bishop” is the Mother of all Oxymorons!

  • The most natural read is a swipe at Benedict, probably related to the former Pope’s fulsome praise of Robert Sarah, which cannot have been received favorably by the liturgical Bolsheviks the current pontiff has installed at Divine Worship.

    That, and there’s zero chance the current pontiff resigns early, occasional rhetorical feints to the contrary notwithstanding. He has far too much demolition left to do.

    I think Michael Brendan Dougherty has it nailed on his Twitter feed (the Bergoglian personality cult reacts predictably).


  • If retired Bishop Fabian Bruskewitz is not a conservative the term is devoid of meaning.

  • Bruskewitz is a notable exception. But his successor is a different story.

  • And as you noted, Donald, Bruskewitz is retired. And speaking of Bruskewitz, he was a constant thorn in the side of the leftist powerbase of the USCCB.

  • Speaking of the USCCB, how do we get around to the laity and some clergy to challenge their “group think” decisions and teachings? I’m convinced their teaching on Mt 25, 31-46 is completely wrong, and it is creating a crisis situation with illegal aliens. And the “fruit” of the “consistent ethic of life” is non existent, the consequence being over 40,000,000 murdered unborn babies without a word from them demanding a constitutional right to life amendment. And their demanding government do something to eliminate poverty. And if the end of prayer in public schools, and the end of God’s two greatest gifts – the gift of life and the sanctity of marriage is not enough, now we are being told that God didn’t know what He was doing when He created all of life based on carbon dioxide and oxygen – which in essence the pope and the bishops are saying in their belief so-called “climate change” is real.

  • Who knows what Pope Francis is saying or thinking. Chances are he doesn’t know himself. Perhaps he has a death wish—-maybe become a martyr or something?

  • I cannot see this as anything other than a snide reference to Benedict XVI, and it is another indication of Francis’ increasing insecurity

PopeWatch: Bishops

Tuesday, May 30, AD 2017


Sandro Magister believes that Pope Francis is not popular among the Bishops:


With the appointment as president of Cardinal Gualtiero Bassetti, after that of the secretary general three years ago, Pope Francis now has full control of the Italian episcopal conference, one third of whose bishops have been installed by him, even in dioceses of the first rank like Bologna, Palermo, the vicariate of Rome, and soon also Milan.

Appointments are a key element in the strategy of Jorge Mario Bergoglio. It should suffice to look at how he is reshaping in his image the college of cardinals, which in the future will elect his successor. After the latest batch of cardinals, announced one week ago for the end of June, chances are slimmer that the next pope could mark a return to the past.

Italy aside, however, winning the agreement of the bishops is anything but easy for Francis.

The only national episcopates that he can count on today are those of Germany, Austria, and Belgium, nations in which the Catholic Church is in the most dramatic decline.

While on the contrary the more vital Churches of Africa are those that stood together, in the two combative synods on the family, against the innovations desired by the pope.

If one then looks at the Americas, both North and South, the picture appears even more unfavorable for the pope.

In Canada, the six bishops of the region of Alberta have publicly taken a position against the go-ahead given by Francis to communion for the divorced and remarried, while in the United States the episcopal conference last November elected as its president Cardinal Daniel N. Di Nardo, precisely one of the thirteen cardinals of the memorable protest letter that infuriated Bergoglio at the beginning of the last synod.

In the American media, this election was covered as a referendum on Pope Francis, and there was reason for this. One year before, on a visit to the United States, Francis had ordered the bishops to change course and to get into step with him; and he had accompanied these commands with a series of appointments close to his mentality, in the first place that of Blase J. Cupich as archbishop of Chicago and as cardinal.

But if there was a referendum, Bergoglio lost it altogether. In the preselection for the appointment of the president, out of ten candidates elected only one to his liking made it in. And the elections of the vice-president – archbishop of Los Angeles José H. Gómez, a member of Opus Dei – and of the heads of the commissions were also contrary to the pope’s expectations.

Even in Latin America, Bergoglio has few admirers.

In Colombia the bishops did not like – and they let him know this – the prejudicial support that Francis gave for the “yes” in the referendum on an agreement with the guerrillas of the FARC, an agreement that many bishops judged as a surrender and that in effect was rejected by the popular vote.

In Bolivia the bishops simply cannot stand the blatantly friendly relationship between Bergoglio and “cocalero” president Evo Morales, their bitter enemy especially since they publicly accused the “high structures” of the state of connections with drug trafficking.

In a Venezuela plunged into catastrophe, there is sadness and anger every time President Nicolás Maduro lashes out against them while appealing to Pope Francis, whose support he boasts having. And unfortunately for the bishops, the words spoken by the pope in commenting on the Venezuelan crisis during his latest in-flight press conference, on the way back from Cairo, sounded too benevolent toward the president and malevolent toward the opposition.

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10 Responses to PopeWatch: Bishops

  • “It has often been noted that Conclaves often choose a Pope as a commentary on the prior Pope. PopeWatch believes that the next conclave will choose as Pope a Cardinal as unlike Pope Francis as it is humanly possible to be.”

    May that Conclave come quickly, Lord Jesus.

  • It’s clear that many bishops who are horrified by the pontiff are taking a “this, too, shall pass” approach.

    Whereas the pontiff is taking a “*You* shall pass and I shall appoint your successor
    approach. Smart money is on the head of the personality cult. Which means much tribulation, pain, and bleeding out for the Church.

  • “Smart money is on the head of the personality cult.”

    Depends. At his age and rumors swirling about his health, I wouldn’t take bets as to him being around four years hence.

  • There may well be bishops and cardinals who agree with this Pontiff on some issues but will absolutely NOT want another like him. I believe that there is resentment among bishops of the clout wielded by the Germans. The Church is undergoing chastisement and none of us knows when it will end.

  • “PopeWatch believes that the next conclave will choose as Pope a Cardinal as unlike Pope Francis as it is humanly possible to be.”

    I wouldn’t be so sure of that. First of all, Francis is packing the the ranks of the cardinalate with those who are board with his agenda. And secondly, the episcopate in the west, which includes the cardinals, is on the hard left, at least when it comes to the so-called social justice issues. And that’s what even the more orthodox bishops seem to care more about than anything. Perhaps they didn’t intend to elect someone so doctrinally left as Bergoglio. But even if in fact not much was known him personally, the fact that he is from Latin America (which means you assume leftist until proven otherwise), they wanted a leftist and thought it was worth the risk. After all, the bishops of the west know full well that the hard left positions they take on issues like the death penalty, immigration, and the economy undercut any efforts they make to promote doctrinal orthodoxy. But yet they do it anyway, even going out of their way to misrepresent views that disagree with their own.

    Like I have said before, this pontificate is not the cause of the leftward lurch of the Church hierarchy and its institutions. It is the product of it!

  • I think Pope Francis was elected because almost all the Cardinals knew almost nothing about him rather than being enthusiastic for a leftward move in the Church. Based upon news reports at the time the Cardinals could well have assumed that he was firmly orthodox.

  • Donald, like I said the default assumption of any cleric from Latin America, especially high ranking clerics, is that they are leftists. Everyone knows that! Why do you think leftists have been clamouring for a pope from Latin America for all these years? Pope Francis has definitely answered that question.

  • As I recall the stories about Pope Francis at the time was that while an economic liberal he was hard core against gay marriage and abortion. This report from the National Catholic Reporter was typical at the time:

    “Bergoglio is a supporter of the social justice ethos of Latin American Catholicism, including a robust defense of the poor.

    “We live in the most unequal part of the world, which has grown the most yet reduced misery the least,” Bergoglio said during a gathering of Latin American bishops in 2007. “The unjust distribution of goods persists, creating a situation of social sin that cries out to Heaven and limits the possibilities of a fuller life for so many of our brothers.”

    Yet he is also known as a staunch defender of the church’s traditional sexual teachings, opposing abortion, same-sex marriage and contraception.

    In 2010, he said gay adoption is a form of discrimination against children, earning a public rebuke from Argentina’s president, Cristina Fernández de Kirchner.”

    The Cardinals bought a pig in a poke and a very surly and unorthodox pig it has turned out to be.

  • He also proposed coming out for civil unions to Argentine Bishops Conference, but got shot down.

  • “PopeWatch believes that the next conclave will choose as Pope a Cardinal as unlike Pope Francis as it is humanly possible to be.”

    Let us pray that you are right Donald. Pope Francis is the most dangerous man in the world today, endangering Catholic souls and the world at large with his false views on economics, politics and Islam.

PopeWatch: Bodyslam

Saturday, May 27, AD 2017



From the only reliable source of Catholic news on the net, Eye of the Tiber:

Just days after rumors emerged that Montana priest Fr. Gregory Forte could be made a bishop, reports that he apparently attacked a Catholic News Agency reporter the night before the pope made his final decision has thrown the diocese into turmoil.

Political reporter for Catholic News Agency Mary Rezac claimed late Wednesday night that while asking Forte a question regarding how silly altar girls look when they wear high heels, the candidate for bishop suddenly body slammed her to the floor, breaking his glasses and shouting, “Get the hell out of here.”

“He took me to the ground,” Rezac told colleague Ryan Thomas. “This is the strangest thing a priest has ever done to me.”

A spokesman for the diocese released a statement accusing Rezac of crashing the Mass, claiming that Rezac “walked up to the altar, aggressively shoved a recorder in Forte’s face, and began asking badgering question.”


But witnesses say that after Forte asked Rezac to remove the recorder, he then removed parts of his vestments, saying, “I’m sick and tired of this,” and body slammed her, before moving into position to place her leg in what is known as a DDT. It was at that point that Rezac was able to free herself and grab a conveniently placed folded chair.

“That’s when she hit him with the chair,” one witness told EOTT. “Calling to those gathered to get on their feet, Rezac went on to execute a suplex on Forte, which laid him out long enough for authorities to arrive.”

Church officials said Rezac was examined at a hospital and released. Officials have stated though the nature of the injuries did not meet the elements of a mortal sin, that Forte would be booked for misdemeanor wrath.


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4 Responses to PopeWatch: Bodyslam

  • I wouldn’t (I wish I lived in Montana0 need another reason to vote for Mr. Gianforte. But, there it is! Bang!

    Herein provides a sense of where “we” are headed. Something I saw years ago on another web site:

    “Make the World a better place. Punch a liberal in the face.”

    See Luke 22:36-37, quotes the scripture which said, “He shared the fate of criminals.”

    In any case, the Church and the leftist media (for anybody with an “R” after her/his name) do not subscribe to American or English Common Law precepts (e.g., innocent until proven guilty). They, as does most of the World, persist in the dossier or inquisitorial mode, albeit sans the rack.

  • Off topic a bit for your post, but the young reporter managed to speak into his hand held ” you just body slammed me, entering the WWRestling term into the discussion making me think of Jesse Ventura picking his opponent up and throwing them down followed by a triumphant pose. In reality I guess it was more of a “scuffle”.that ended with the reporter going down- that terminology doesn’t excite though
    Also 😊Gianforte is quite the name for the big ad guy

  • After the correction was made that the reporter assaulted by the bishop-elect was from Life Site News, Vatican sources confirm that Bishop-Elect Forte will be made a Cardinal at the next consistory.

  • Anzlyne- from what I remember of the, um, reputation of English reporters…yeah, I’d say that the guy got “up in his face,” and given the actual violence that’s been done to high profile conservatives it didn’t turn out well.

    Wish there was some video.

PopeWatch: Black Swan

Friday, May 26, AD 2017


Carl Olson at The Catholic World Report has a keen summing up of this Pap


Ironically, while Francis talks about clarifying doctrine, there’s simply no doubt that Amoris Laetitia, despite all protests and posturings, has instead confused, disturbed, and confounded with its ambiguities and problematic assertions. Insistence that this is all about “pastoral” issues is misleading, at best, since doctrine and practice go hand in hand; you need not be a theologian to see the essential relationship between what you believe and how you live (it might even be that not being a theologian is helpful in this regard). This pontificate has been divisive in ways few could have imagined prior to 2013. In addition, while Francis likes to talk about the “people”, it’s fairly evident that he has little patience for those people who dare question his questionable statements and actions, no matter how carefully, formally, or respectually they do so. His impatience with theological precision and doctrinal clarity is unsettling. As I noted back in December 2015:

I can only conclude that, for whatever reason, this pope has a deep aversion to theological precision (and, thus, clarity) and is quite impatient with how “doctrine” and “dogma” impede his vision of how things should be in the Church. This is troubling on several counts … First, following the logic of Francis’ various remarks, the pontificates of John Paul II and Benedict XVI (for starters) were pharisaical and unnecessarily complex, and thus stand opposed to his vision of mercy. Whether or not Francis cares about such a logical progression and conclusion is, of course, an entirely different matter. 

And it’s not just about burying Benedict; it’s also about ignoring St. John Paul II. In the meantime, there is the name-calling, the scolding, and the vague appeals to the Holy Spirit. 

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10 Responses to PopeWatch: Black Swan

  • It is of the utmost importance to recognize that adherence to doctrine as a path to salvation has been relegated to the Church’s back burner in favor of ambiguous ramblings and utterances that appear (repeat) appear, to be aimed at substituting placenta-like nibbles of mercy and pastoral care for sound theology and practice.
    The very last thing the Catholic world needs now in these precarious times of an overt war on God’s Church, is a distortion of the core beliefs of our faith and God’s Holy Church.
    Our hope is that God will again turn evil into a greater good.

  • Personally, I think Vatican II was the Black Swan event. Francis is simply the hatchling.

  • Excellent line from the article:

    “The problem, in part, is that Francis’ use of the term “ideology” is something like a shotgun blast: it sounds powerful and gets attention, but the exact target can be hard to locate.”

  • President Trump should have given Francis a book that he clearly is not familiar with, the Catechism of the Catholic Church

  • I find myself recalling the following two quotations

    “With every day that passes, the conflict between tendencies that set Catholic against Catholic in every order–social, political, philosophical–is revealed as sharper and more general. One could almost say that there are now two quite incompatible “Catholic mentalities,” particularly in France. And that is manifestly abnormal, since there cannot be two Catholicisms”


    “[U]nprecedented perhaps in depth and extent–for it is at the same time scientific, metaphysical, moral, social and political–[the crisis] is not a “dissolution” [for the spirit of faith does not die], nor even an “evolution” [for the spirit of faith does not change], it is a purification of the religious sense, and an integration of Catholic truth”

    They were written by Maurice Blondel in 1907

  • Blondel, whatever his other gifts, was obviously a woefully inadequate prophet.

  • Pingback: Canon212 Update: FrancisChurch is Not the Church. Stop Swimming in It and Fight – The Stumbling Block
  • “I can only conclude that, for whatever reason, this pope has a deep aversion to theological precision (and, thus, clarity) and is quite impatient with how “doctrine” and “dogma” impede his vision of how things should be in the Church.”

    The “whatever reason” is that the Pope has an aversion to the Truth, i.e, Christ’s words about being the Way, the Truth and the Life.

  • Donald R Mcclarey wrote, “Blondel, whatever his other gifts, was obviously a woefully inadequate prophet.”

    Well, when one looks at the flowering of French Theology in the 20th century, with the Oratorian, Louis Boyer, the Académicien Henri Bremond, Joseph Maréchal SJ, Marie-Dominique Chenu OP, Cardinal Henri de Lubac SJ, Cardinal Yves Congar OP and Cardinal Jean Daniélou SJ, to name only the most prominent, I would say his prophecy was fulfilled.

  • Considering the state of the Church in France, barely on life support, I would say that he stands revealed as a false prophet.

PopeWatch: The Meeting

Thursday, May 25, AD 2017





Well the meeting occurred.  I would note that Ivanka and Melania were properly attired wearing black with veils, a fitting display of respect for the Vicar of Christ:


The meeting turned out not to be about Francis, the leader of 1.2 billion Catholics, taking the American president to the woodshed about building a wall or closing borders to refugees.

Diplomatically speaking, they met as equals – as Heads of State.

There is a huge clash of styles between the two men: the pope, a model of humility; and Trump, more of a showman-businessman combo.

But Francis is all about finding common ground. And while Trump is known for his “Art of the Deal,” Francis has the divine calling for the Art of Persuasion. In that vein, a key exchange of the meeting was his gift to the president: copies of his three major writings.

The first is his encyclical, “Evangelii Gaudium” — The Joy of the Gospel.  This is about finding the core of Christianity. It’s about real faith. It will speak to Francis’ reason behind his statement, “No true Christian would build a wall.”

Next is “Amoris Laetitia” — The Joy of Love. This is about family, about sexual mores, divorce, communion and all those thorny issues the church is dealing with as the meaning of “family” in a secularized world has changed. The key here is that it is neither conservative nor liberal. It was Francis’ unique way of speaking the truth in love.

And finally, “Laudato Si” — On Care of Our Common Home. This is the major encyclical on the environment and climate change. It had a big release in 2015, with many seeing this as a central focus of Francis’ papacy. It is an issue they may disagree on, but again, Francis is about persuasion. He’s letting his writing do the talking.

President Trump said, “Well, I’ll be reading them.”

Most of the real diplomacy work took place during the president’s brief meeting afterwards with the Vatican’s Secretary of State Cardinal Pietro Parolin, and the Secretary for Relations with States Monsignor Paul Richard Gallagher.

Reports called them “cordial discussions” that included talks about a joint commitment in favor of life,  freedom of worship, and  freedom of conscience – all issues the Catholic Church is concerned about.

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3 Responses to PopeWatch: The Meeting

  • Two things that occur to me after reading this post: 1) Francis’ giving copies of his own writings
    to Trump smacks of that same egotistic behavior we saw when Obama gave Queen Elizabeth II
    a gift of an iPod loaded with recordings of his speeches. And 2) It’s pretty rich to act friendly
    and respectful in a face-to-face meeting with Trump, and then turn around and have him badmouthed
    in Il Sismografo. Especially when that badmouthing includes an accusation of “say(ing)
    everything and the opposite of everything”. I’d say that a supposed ally who behaves like that
    is himself “not particularly reliable”.

    I’m guessing that Pope Francis has likely insured that in any future dealings with President Trump
    the Holy See will be humored and ignored in the most diplomatic, politest way.

  • “..Francis is all about finding common ground” .
    “The key here is that it is neither conservative nor liberal.” “Francis is about persuasion. He’s letting his writing do the talking.”


  • Trump should go out of his way to praise the Catholic religion itself from a historical perspective and the great figures of the past, especially Christ himself, who pointed the way to achieving world peace.

    And he in no way should acknowledge the Modernist vision of the Church and it’s focus on secular issues and Socialist ideology as expressed by Pope Francis who is essentially an anti-Catholic figure.

PopeWatch: Separated at Birth

Wednesday, May 24, AD 2017

In anticipation of the grand meeting in Rome of Pope and President:

The leader can be described thusly:

  1. He is impulsive.
  2. He insults enemies.
  3. He uses twitter daily.
  4. He loves media attention.
  5. His most ardent supporters resemble a cult.
  6. He is autocratic.
  7. He is sometimes inarticulate when he goes off script.
  8. He is a source of division.
  9. His statements are frequently factually challenged.
  10. He believes in conspiracy theories.

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6 Responses to PopeWatch: Separated at Birth

  • Yep. All of the above. Except, there is one yuuge difference. President Trump recently said at Liberty University, “In America, we worship God, not the Government.” Or, put another way, we worship the Creator, not Creation.

  • Well, ginny, there is actually another difference. Pope Francis is a hardened ideologue who is not shaken by facts and President Trump has no ideological core.

  • Other than that one is an intellectual and one is the total opposite of an intellectual, one has led a life or oral rectitude and service and the other debauchery and self-service, one tells the truth, the other one lies, etc.

    This post veers into the territory of false witness, Donald Trump’s home turf.

  • Pope Francis an intellectual? I doubt even he would claim that. Oral rectitude? The Pope Francis insult generator would testify against that. A life of service? In what cause? That of Cardinal Kasper, the old adversary of Pope Benedict?


    Telling the truth? Pope Francis has the habit of saying things that are just not so. His belief, repeatedly stated, that arms merchants cause wars for example. Pope Francis is a walking epitome of the fake news concept.


  • This post veers into the territory of false witness, Donald Trump’s home turf.

    Mote removal might not be on the current schedule.

  • It appears the President has a knack for surrounding himself with good advisors, good people and also that he is willing to listen and learn..
    I don’t know if the pope selected his closest advisors or if they selected him.

PopeWatch: Justice

Tuesday, May 23, AD 2017

14 Because strait is the gate, and narrow is the way, which leadeth unto life, and few there be that find it.

Mathew 7: 14



Pope Francis continues with his mercy uber alles theme:



Pope Francis says Catholic leaders do a “great injustice” when they say God judges sinners when in fact he forgives sinners with his mercy.

At an evening prayer service Friday in Fatima, Portugal, Francis said: “Mercy has to be put before judgment and, in any case, God’s judgment will always be rendered in light of his mercy.”

Francis has riled the more doctrinaire wing of the church with his mercy-over-morals priorities, particularly after the last two doctrine-minded papacies. He recently concluded an entire Holy Year on trying to show the more merciful side of the church.


Francis delivered the mercy-trumps-judgment message on the first day of a two-day visit to the shrine at Fatima, where three shepherd children reported having visions of the Virgin Mary 100 years ago. Francis will declare two of the children saints on Saturday, the 100th anniversary of the apparitions.

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8 Responses to PopeWatch: Justice

  • “What an odd time we live in when Catholics can get sounder moral instruction on this key point from a dead, drug and alcohol addicted, Protestant Country singer than from the Vicar of Christ.”

    Yup, and that’s true mercy 😉

  • And the way it is all in the Washington Post ( owner Jeff Bezos) makes us Catholics all look as foolish as the Bezos of the world think we are.
    The resolve of the evil one!
    Pope has said his time will be short before he goes to the father’s house.
    I can not Imagine how he can stand quietly in prayer in front of the statue of Mary without feeling the heat.
    Years ago we used to wonder about how an anti christ would be able to fool the world.

  • Mercy and justice – neither one comes before the other. God’s mercy is perfect, as is His justice. That’s incomprehensible but true.

    If we open ourselves to God’s grace we will fall under His mercy. If we fail to, we fall under His justice. Both are equally real. God doesn’t need anything from us, and we can’t enhance His glory. We will either bring glory to His justice or to His mercy. But God is love, and wants us to fall under His mercy. He created us to sing His praises in Heaven.

    It’s merciful to talk about God’s justice, and it’s just to talk about God’s mercy. I can’t fault the Pope for either. I can fault the Post for doing a bad job in their religion reporting. But people these days need the full message, as people always do, about God’s mercy and justice.

  • “If we open ourselves to God’s grace we will fall under His mercy. If we fail to, we fall under His justice.”
    Well said Pinky. God forces no one into heaven. God condemns no one into hell. God is. Man must will to get to heaven. Man must will to avoid hell. The choice in free will belongs to man. God does not and cannot contradict Himself. Given free will, man must will to belong to God in Mercy, Justice and Love. Only prayer from Pope Francis may convert the hearts of those who refuse God’s mercy. It is man’s choice. Neither God, nor Pope Francis can impose God’s mercy on a reprobate who refuses God’s mercy.

  • Yes -my literal earthly understanding of justice and of mercy are certainly inadequate!
    Justice and Mercy “kissed” at the cross. Justice and Mercy stand together- Mercy is just, and justice is mercy
    BUT we are in Time and Place.
    God is outside time, there is no chronology in Him – His attributes of justice and mercy are eternal -we would think of them as “coincidental” if they were in time but they are. mysterious (like Jesus’ eternal “sonship” and shared esse)

    For us, there comes a time when the cup is full. There needs to be repentence before death, before entering timelessness.. “today” like the good thief did.
    Time can run out on us- like a fugitive 🙂

  • Isn’t God’s perfect justice in the fact that he gives us the freedom to ask, or refuse to ask, for his perfect Mercy?

  • It seems to me that God’s perfect justice would be in throwing me into Hell for all of my sins, and that God’s mercy gives me the unearned opportunity to ask for His mercy. I’ve already cashed in my Freedom chip with my first sin. At this point, all I can do to appeal to justice is wash myself in His blood and say “this debt was paid”.

  • When “Pope” Francis speaks of mercy he really means antinomian: 1 : one who holds that under the gospel dispensation of grace (see 1grace 1a) the moral law is of no use or obligation because faith alone is necessary to salvation. 2 : one who rejects a socially established morality.

    “Pope” Francis quite simply is a heretic.

PopeWatch: Council of Jerusalem

Monday, May 22, AD 2017



The Pope takes a look at the Council of Jerusalem to accuse those who oppose him of trying to impose ideology rather than doctrine:



The Holy Father was commenting on the First Reading, from the Acts of the Apostles. He noted that even in the first Christian community “there were jealousies, power struggles, a certain deviousness that wanted to profit from and to buy power.” There are always problems, he said: “We are human, we are sinners” and there are difficulties, even in the Church. But being sinners leads to humility and to drawing close to the Lord, as Saviour who saves us from our sins. With regard to the gentiles who the Spirit called to become Christians, the Holy Father recalled that, in the reading, the apostles and the elders chose several people to go to Antioch together with Paul and Barnabas. The reading describes two different kinds of people: those who had “forceful discussions” but with “a good spirit,” on the one hand; and those who “sowed confusion”:

“The group of the apostles who want to discuss the problem, and the others who go and create problems. They divide, they divide the Church, they say that what the Apostles preached is not what Jesus said, that it is not the truth.”

The apostles discussed the situation among themselves, and in the end came to an agreement:

“But it is not a political agreement; it is the inspiration of the Holy Spirit that leads them to say: no things, no necessities. Only those who say: don’t eat meat at the time, meat sacrificed to idols, because that was communion with the idols; abstain from blood, from animals that were strangled, and from illegitimate unions.”

The Pope pointed to the “liberty of the Spirit” that leads to agreement: so, he said, the gentiles were allowed to enter the Church without having to undergo circumcision. It was at the heart of the “first Council” of the Church: the Holy Spirit and they, the Pope with the Bishops, all together,” gathered together in order “to clarify the doctrine;” and later, through the centuries – as at Ephesus or at Vatican II – because “it is a duty of the Church to clarify the doctrine,” so that “what Jesus said in the Gospels, what is the Spirit of the Gospels, would be understood well”:

“But there were always people who without any commission go out to disturb the Christian community with speeches that upset souls: ‘Eh, no, someone who says that is a heretic, you can’t say this, or that; this is the doctrine of the Church.’ And they are fanatics of things that are not clear, like those fanatics who go there sowing weeds in order to divide the Christian community. And this is the problem: when the doctrine of the Church, that which comes from the Gospel, that which the Holy Spirit inspires – because Jesus said, “He will teach us and remind you of all that I have taught’ – [when] that doctrine becomes an ideology. And this is the great error of those people.”

These individuals, the Pope explained, “were not believers, they were ideologized,” they had an ideology that closed the heart to the work of the Holy Spirit. The Apostles, on the other hand, certainly discussed things forcefully, but they were not ideologized: “They had hearts open to what the Holy Spirit said. And after the discussion ‘it seemed good to the Holy Spirit and to us.’”

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5 Responses to PopeWatch: Council of Jerusalem

PopeWatch: Catholic Education

Saturday, May 20, AD 2017


From the only reliable source of Catholic news on the net, Eye of the Tiber:



Facing financial ruin due to the high cost of trying to provide their son with a good Catholic education, sources confirmed Thursday that parents of high school freshman Johnny Irving, Tom and Lisa, are quite impressed with their son’s growing knowledge of every tenet of every religion, but Catholicism.

According to the freshman’s parents, Irving has gained an immense amount of knowledge about the Koran, The Analects of Confucius, and the Book of Mormon in his class Fundamentals of Catholic Doctrine 101.

“It’s breathtaking the amount of non-Catholic knowledge he’s learning in his Catholic Doctrine class,” Lisa Irving told EOTT. “We’re about a paycheck or two away from filing for bankruptcy just so Johnny can learn about everything but Catholicism at a Catholic school, but it’s so worth it. He always comes home telling us interesting things about Catholic teaching like how according to the Church the most important doctrine is coexistence. And how the Church teaches that it’s pointless to evangelize since a person’s own consciousness, being infused by a higher spirit, stirs within him or her at birth and sanctifies every belief, whim, or desire that person has. I didn’t know that. Probably because I went to Catholic school when classrooms had crucifixes and whatnot in them.”


Lisa went on to say that, though her son still has never heard of the Nicene Creed, that he had memorized several verses from the Koran that incidentally mention Jesus, and that through Buddhist teachings, he has come to learn about Christ the bodhisattva.

“Listen, some people might think $40,000 for a four-year high school education seems absurd, ” Lisa Irving went on to say. “But tell that to me when my son graduates summa cum laude, which of course he will graduate with since every student in that fine scholastic institution graduates with that honor.”

At press time, Johnny is studying for his midterms in one of the school’s mandatory classes, Advanced Being Nice.

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5 Responses to PopeWatch: Catholic Education

  • I must confess that I went (too often drinking when I should have been thinking) through a Catholic college wheree ach year three credits of Theology were required. I earned three of them for a course on Islam taught by a Bulgarian priest who had been in a labor battalion with the Axis forces in Italy. FYI they were white-washing the filthy paganism back then, too.

    It is Armed Forces Day. Greet theme ever with grateful hearts.

  • During my college years, my parish was a huge old church,
    run by members of an order once famous for its missionary work, but
    now sadly heterodox and decadent. I volunteered to teach CCD, and
    another volunteer and I were assigned to teach the high schoolers. The
    workbooks we were given to use had been purchased at great expense from
    a convent publishing house and were short on information and long on
    new age psychobabble. We quietly shelved them and taught from a

    These were good kids, and some had been in Catholic schools their entire
    academic lives. But they were almost utterly ignorant of the basics of
    the Faith. The Trinity? Never heard of it. Real Presence? Appalled and
    disgusted. I had the students raise their hands if they thought Jesus was
    a man, but not God. Half the class. God, but not a man? The other half.
    What about both God and man? One hand.

    It wasn’t that these kids were jerking my chain and pretending to not know
    these things– the basics of the Faith were almost completely unknown to
    them. Their parents had put them through Catholic schools, and had them
    attending CCD, all with the understanding that they were being taught these
    things– and they were not. I cannot speak to why the parents weren’t
    talking with their teens to find out what they’d learned, or reinforce and
    explain articles of faith. But I can say that this affluent parish with 3(!) priests,
    a seminarian doing his diaconate year, and both a paid Liturgist and a Director
    of Religious Education on staff seemed unperturbed with the status quo.
    Those kids had had their birthright– the Catholic Faith– traded for a mess
    of porridge and the parents and staff at the parish didn’t appear to see
    the problem.

  • Clinton, my parents wasted their money on so called Catholic education in the 1970s.
    I got the Internet in early 1999 and learned more in three months than I learned in eight years of Catholic school and CCD.

  • Sad but true. I did not catch on to what happened until the ‘90s when I met a Louvain priest and Bible scholar who I realized had lost his faith.

  • My local Diocese’s newspaper has a weekly section entitled “Our Catholic Youth”. The pages are dedicated to the 5-8% of catholic school children who attend private school in the Diocese. Costs for such schooling have risen to $6K per child for each year of grade school and $12K per child for each year of high school. The local Diocese high school imports 30% of it’s students from two neighboring diocese as it is located near a major highway, and 20% of it’s students are non-catholic. Each year Pro Life essays are promoted by the Diocese but only for those in attendance at the Diocese schools. Those in attendance at the Diocese high school are pushed to attend the most expensive colleges across the country, in the words of the high school president “students attendance at elite colleges ($$) is the measure of the quality of the high school”. The student’s then gain the diocese high school a reputation, while incurring a lot of debt. Judging by the alumni newspaper (I attended the HS 35 years ago when things were quite different), few marry, and those that do typically have only 1 maybe 2 children.
    – Typical students are white, upper middle class with no more than one sibling.
    – My wife and I having been promoters of NFP, know many who use NFP in the area and know of no parents who have children in the schools who do not use contraception. We in fact are laughed at for being promoters of NFP and having four children.

    I recently stopped receiving the Diocese newspaper, the hypocrisy was just too much.

PopeWatch: Maduro’s Buddy

Thursday, May 18, AD 2017



Father Raymond de Souza calls out Pope Francis in regard to Venezuela:


On the return flight from Cairo, the Holy Father was asked about Venezuela and appeared to depart from his neutrality – against the opposition:

Part of the opposition does not want this [dialogue]. Interesting, the opposition itself is divided and, on the other hand, it seems that the conflicts are increasingly escalating.  But there is something happening.  There is something moving forward, and I’ve been informed of this, but it’s still very much in the air as yet. Everything that can be done for Venezuela must be done.  And with the necessary guarantees.  Otherwise we are just playing childish games that lead nowhere.

What that answer meant was unclear, except that the pope appeared to be blaming the opposition. It did not take long for that response to be heard in Venezuela and the dismay to be heard in Rome.

The next day the Regina Coeli address lurched toward restoring some kind of balance, with Pope Francis appealing “to the government and all the members of Venezuelan society to avoid any further forms of violence, to respect human rights and to negotiate solutions to the serious humanitarian, social, political and economic crisis that is exhausting the population.”

The Maduro regime, having lost the delaying tactic of mediation, proposed instead a constitutional convention to draft a new constitution for Venezuela.

This would have the benefit of dissolving the National Assembly, which has been controlled by the opposition since 2013.

Earlier this year, Maduro had his allies on the supreme court strip the National Assembly of its powers, until an international protest forced a reversal.

The opposition has rejected the constitutional reform tactic, as have the Catholic bishops. On Saturday, Maduro denounced the bishops for taking a harder line against him than Pope Francis. He publicly called for the Venezuelan bishops to agree to his proposals in obedience to Pope Francis.

Vatican diplomacy has now stumbled into a place where Maduro considers Pope Francis an ally against the bishops of Venezuela.

It is a repeat of Vatican fumbling in Ukraine, where local Catholics felt that Pope Francis was siding with the Russian invaders. The Russia-Ukraine situation was fast-moving and great power politics – not to mention the delicate ecumenical situation with the Russian Orthodox – were at play.

Nothing of the sort is at play in Venezuela. It is the pope’s backyard. If the Holy See is positioned on the side of tyranny in opposition to her own bishops, it would be an inexplicable catastrophe. So much of the Holy Father’s defense of the suffering and exploited would ring hollow.

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16 Responses to PopeWatch: Maduro’s Buddy

  • “I’m not conservative nor liberial. I’m apostolic.” -PF

    As always…. actions do speak louder than words.

    My prayers for him haven’t ceased and I hope your prayers haven’t either. Not easy but highly necessary since we can’t underestimate the power of prayer nor God working miracles. Conversion.

  • My prayer is that failing Bergoglio’s repentance, God shows mercy to both Venezuela and the Church, and ends this horrible Pontificate.

  • The Church has to navigate in a certain political and economic matrix. I don’t think its necessary (and it’s usually quite inadvisable) to say much about these dimensions of life. There is much else to discuss. Here we are again and he not only opens his trap, he makes a clown out of himself in the process. How many reporters did venerable Pius Xii ever speak to?

  • “The Church has to navigate in a certain political and economic matrix.”

    Great popes aid in changing the matrix, as John Paul II did in Poland.

  • Did Papa Foxtrot ever meet an atheistic totalitarian he didn’t like?

    “I’m not conservative nor liberal. I’m apostolic.” -PF. Outrageous! He endorses every left-wing cause/policy point and disregards 2,000 years of Church teaching when they can’t be subverted to push socialism and state control over the means of production.

  • Great popes aid in changing the matrix, as John Paul II did in Poland.

    I see your point. There is a distinction between a place that is constitutionally atheist (say, Soviet Russia) and a place where there’s ample evidence of Chesterton’s dictum that there’s a whole lot of ruin in a nation (say, the Dominican Republic, or contemporary America). What you have in Venezuela is a place with a damaged political economy that a military pseudo-intellectual and a labor meathead have (with the aid of their minions) turned into a catastrophe. Francis I don’t think has the background or tools to make sense of any of it.

  • “Francis I don’t think has the background or tools to make sense of any of it.”


  • “Francis I don’t think has the background or tools to make sense of any of it.” Pope Francis has advisers who are grounded in Catholic doctrine. There is no excuse for his embrace of Maduro’s communist principles.

  • He’s just following the old dictum: “No enemies to the Left.”

    It is his political lodestar.

  • Pope Francis has advisers who are grounded in Catholic doctrine. There is no excuse for his embrace of Maduro’s communist principles.

  • T. Shaw

    I agree. He goes out of his way to support leftists agenda’s….green speak, guest speakers who support population control..but woe to the rigid conservatives​..money loving weapons manufacturers.

    Because his words don’t always… support his actions, I’ve made my prayers for him to be conversion prayers. I may miss the indulgences but I’m okay with that. His need is far greater than mine at the moment.

    St. Pope JPII…pray for us.

  • Pope Francis has a one track (auto-Leftist) mind and listens to no one but himself. The “tools at his disposal” are not used or even wanted.

  • Philip: My son told me that the hole in the ozone layer that scared the pants off the world and made hair spray illegal, freon refrigerant unacceptable and that went on for decades, was later found out to be a much ado about nothing. It was later learned that the hole moved around the world and is a natural occurrence. How people were bullied by the terror of the hole in the ozone layer. Now we have climate change. Francis is old enough to have been included in the hole in the ozone layer sky is falling fright. Francis’ job is to pray, especially if the sky is falling. If there is climate change that is unnatural, Pope Francis has not been praying hard enough.

  • Mary De Voe.

    I have to agree with your statement about praying hard enough and our Pope.

    Listening is the majority of our prayers.
    I feel as though the listener isn’t listening or has cultivated a relationship in his listening that is counter to the Holy Spirit.
    This is based upon his actions and words.

    I do not believe the Holy Spirit is in conflict with The Father Almighty and Jesus Christ.
    His ambiguity tells me that the listener is tuned into a foreign host. Not good.

  • And then he makes perfect sense; http://www.lifenews.com/2017/05/19/pope-francis-no-research-justifies-killing-human-embryos-unborn-babies-precious-in-the-eyes-of-god/

    It’s why we must keep praying for him.
    Conversion for him and for all of us!

PopeWatch: Que?

Tuesday, May 16, AD 2017


Phil Lawler at Catholic Culture notes that Pope Francis uses Jesuit doublespeak when he wishes to avoid endorsing Catholic teaching:

As the question-and-answer session was coming to a close, a Portuguese journalist was given the opportunity for a final question. He asked the Holy Father to comment on the fact that in Portugal, an overwhelmingly Catholic country, the political trend is favorable to recognition of same-sex marriage, acceptance of abortion, and now perhaps even euthanasia. Here is the Pope’s reply:

I think it’s a political problem. And that also the Catholic conscience isn’t a catholic one of total belonging to the Church and that behind that there isn’t a nuanced catechesis, a human catechesis. That is, the Catechism of the Catholic Church is an example of what is a serious and nuanced thing. I think that there is a lack of formation and also of culture. Because it’s curious, in some other regions, I think of the south of Italy, some in Latin America, they are very Catholic but they are anti-clerical and ‘priest-eaters’, that … there is a phenomenon that exists. It concerns me. That’s why I tell priests, you will have read it, to flee from clericalism because clericalism distances people. May they flee from clericalism and I add: it’s a plague in the Church. But here there is a work also of catechesis, of raising awareness, of dialogue, also of human values.

So, given an opportunity to comment on the collapse of Catholic moral principles in a Catholic society—it could easily be described as a softball question—the Pope said… What?

Read that answer again, and tell me what the Pope thinks of Catholics who, in public life, betray Catholic principles. Good luck.

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10 Responses to PopeWatch: Que?

  • Only liberals love what he says. God, we don’t want Jorge Bergoglio dead or wish him any ill will, but for the sake of your Holy Church, please end this Pontificate in Your way and by Your will, in Jesus’ Holy Name, Amen.

  • I had my good wife read his response just to see she could make heads or tails out of it. No luck. PF is an evil clown. Pope Chastisement.

  • Curiously, we don’t have the expression “priest-eaters” in English. One does in French; « bouffeur de curé » is a common term for an anti-clerical, especially an anti-clerical politician, of the stamp of Jules Ferry, Emile Combes or George Clemenceau.

    It should not be confused with secularism (although the two often go together). Anti-clericalism, in the sense of wishing to curb the powers and privileges of the clergy, was common enough throughout the Middle Ages and the clergy were often the butt of satire.

    There was a streak of anti-clericalism, too, in Jansenism, as witness the Synod of Pistoia in 1786. Many of the supporters of Joseph II’s ecclesiastical legislation were Jansenists and a number of the deputies on the committee that drew up the Civil Constitution of the Clergy (1790) during the French Revolution were Appellant Jansenists.

  • The man never fails to disappoint. He is all doubt and confusion all the time.

    He acts like liberals in this respect he only cites Jesus and the Gospels when needed to support his liberal agenda.

    Finally (Thank god!), “que” (accent over the e) is literally translated “what?” I have known Spanish speakers to use the word “como” or “how” in such situations.

    Our Lady of Fatima, pray for us.

  • “No Pope would be better than this Pope.”

    Pope Francis: Creating wannabe sedevacantists since 2013.

  • What relationship does that answer have to the question? I’m afraid our Holy Father is nuts – the Japanese brain surgeon is right in his diagnosis. Can you ever imagine Benedict XVI, or St. JP II, or Pius XII ever giving a response like that ?

  • I think he said it is caused by a lack of formation and of culture. He noted that people consider themselves Catholic, but they are against priests and authority structures, priests being the very ones who bring them the sacraments and the faith–so in other words it doesn’t make sense, there is a hole in their buckets. Claiming to be Catholic while being antiCatholic is incoherent.
    Unfortunately he also seems to me to be a priest-eater- so many things he says seems to make the priesthood more and more marginal

  • The Pope was trying to say hypocritical Priests who overstate their priesthood for their own personal gain , I think this Pope uses a dialogue that challenges all when he speaks without really condemning directly
    Which is a good thing only real conservative Catholics to the point of being fanatical in their views will take offence ,

  • “I think this Pope uses a dialogue that challenges all when he speaks”

    The Pope only challenges those who seek to uphold the teachings of the Catholic Church and/or those who differ with him politically. His mode of operation is perfectly understandable after four years.

  • Seems like the usual meaningless gobbledygook indicating he didn’t want to answer the question because he doesn’t really believe in Catholic doctrine. Bad answer from a bad guy.

PopeWatch: Pontius Pilate

Monday, May 15, AD 2017



Sandro Magister wonders why the Vatican is silent on the persecution by the Venezuelan government against the Church:


The number of dead is now around forty, the wounded number a thousand. It is the price of a month of popular demonstrations, even of only women dressed in white, against the presidency of Nicolás Maduro, in a Venezuela on the brink.

A Venezuela in which a new factor has recently taken the field, and this is the growing, systematic aggression against properties and personnel of the Catholic Church.

Vatican sources – starting with “L’Osservatore Romano” – as detailed as they are in covering the developments of the crisis, are sparing with news about aggression against the Church.

There is not a single reference to this even in the letter that Pope Francis wrote on May 5 to the Venezuelan bishops, who on the same day published a vibrant declaration against the announcement made by Maduro of a “constitutional convention” to reform the state for his use and consumption, meaning in practice – the bishops charge – to impose “a totalitarian, militaristic, violent, oppressive police state system” even worse than the “21st-century socialism” set up by Maduro’s predecesssor, Hugo Chávez, a leader still praised by many leftist populist groups in Latin America and elsewhere.

For Sunday, May 21, the bishop have called a “Day of prayer for peace in Venezuela.” But meanwhile, here is an initial survey of the aggression against the Catholic Church, published by the Venezuelan journalist Marinellys Tremamunno in La Nuova Bussola Quotidiana of April 2:

> Venezuela, inizia la persecuzione della Chiesa

Nothing is off-limits. Death threats and blasphemous graffiti on the walls of churches. Masses interrupted by incursions of Chavist “colectivos.” Caracas cardinal Jorge Urosa Savino silenced during the homily and forced to leave the church. The venerated image of the Nazarene in the cathedral of Valencia smeared with human excrement. The chanceries of the dioceses of Guarenas and Maracay plundered. Thefts of consecrated hosts in Maracaibo. The headquarters of the episcopal conference devastated. One priest killed in Guayana and another abducted.

But it doesn’t end there. On May 4, the doors of the cathedral of Caracas were damaged and its walls were covered with graffiti in praise of the government. That same day, a crowd of students from the Catholic university marched on the episcopal residence, as a sign of solidarity.

Because by now the bishops too are an “enemy” against whom the Maduro presidency is lashing out with vehemence. Especially after the failure at the outset of the attempt at mediation between the government and opposition groups supported at the end of last year by pope Jorge Mario Bergoglio through his envoys:

> Venezuela, a Nation on the Brink of the Abyss (7.11.2017)

The stance adopted by the Vatican authorities to foster a reconciliation among the parties was that expressed by Cardinal Pietro Parolin, formerly the nuncio in Caracas before his appointment as secretary of state, in the letter he sent to the parties in mid-December, “in the name and at the behest of the Holy Father.”

In it, he identified four conditions for the opening of dialogue:

– humanitarian channels to guarantee the population food and medicine;
– restitution to the parliament (in which the opposition groups are in the majority) of the prerogatives stipulated by the constitution;
– the liberation of political prisoners;
– new free elections.

But the Maduro presidency has not wanted to meet any of these conditions. On the contrary, it has made additional decisions that have ramped up the repression.

And Pope Francis has been punctually informed about everything. Also through direct conversations with Venezuelan bishops, including the president of the episcopal conference, Cardinal Baltazar Porras Cardozo, archbishop of Mérida, who met with the pope in Rome on April 27, on the eve of his journey to Egypt.

So one can understand the disappointment and anger of many Venezuelans, including bishops, when two days later, on April 29, during the customary press conference on the flight back to Rome from Cairo, Francis said this about the crisis in Venezuela:

“There was an effort by the Holy See, but this did not produce results, because the proposals were not accepted, or were diluted with a ‘yes, yes, but no, no.’ We all know the difficult situation in Venezuela, which is a country that I love very much. I know that now there is insistence – I believe on the part of the four former presidents [of Colombia, Spain, Panama, and Santo Domingo – editor’s note] – to restore this facilitation. I believe that conditions have already been presented. Very clear conditions. But part of the opposition does not want this. Because it is curious, the opposition is divided. And, on the other hand, it appears that the conflicts are intensifying all the time. There is something astir, I am informed about it, but it is very much up in the air. But everything that can be done for Venezuela must be done. With the necessary guarantees. If not, we are playing ‘tintìn pirulero’ [where everyone wants to get out of paying the pledge – editor’s note], and this is no good.”

The next day, Sunday, April 30, speaking at the “Regina Caeli,” Francis moderated somewhat the dismissive words he spoke on the plane against the Venezuelan opposition groups, practically blamed for being the ones who ruined the agreement. He addressed “a heartfelt appeal to the government and to all the components of society that every further form of violence be avoided, human rights be respected, and negotiated solutions be sought for the grave humanitarian, social, political, and economic crisis that is devastating the population.” But this correction has by no means calmed the waters. Twelve hours later, in fact, the opposition groups wrote a letter to the pope in which “not divided but unanimous” they said that they agree to the conditions set by Cardinal Parolin – unlike the government, which has always rejected them – and indicated free elections as the only way out of the crisis.

The fact is that between Pope Francis and the Venezuelan bishops, concerning the crisis that is ravaging the country, there is an abyss. The bishops stand with the population that is protesting against the dictatorship, and are respected and listened to as authoritative guides. While Bergoglio is judged on a par with Pontius Pilate, unforgivably reckless with Maduro and Chavism, in addition to being incomprehensibly reticent on the victims of the repression and on the aggression that is striking the Church itself.

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3 Responses to PopeWatch: Pontius Pilate

  • This outcome was inevitable in Venezuela. Chavez, like Castro, was a criminal who should have stayed locked up. Chavez got himself elected, blamed the US for all of Venezuela’s problems, praised Castro and has sought to turn Venezuela into another Cuba. Mauro is an extension of Castro. As I was not yet born when Castro seized power, how much did the Church protest? Not much, I’ll bet. In the Pontiff’s mind, only the Right persecutes and only the Right is a tyranny. Venezuelans should expect no help from him. What can you expect from a man who has praised Communism and Communists?

  • I meant to say Mauro is an extension of Chavez.

  • For the Pope to speak about the situation truthfully is to undermine his Communist views which are his entire reason for being. What is truth, indeed. Truth must be tailored to fit the Pope’s view.