Thursday, September 13, 2018

Florence

Tuesday, September 11, 2018

Monsignor Gänswein appears to be sold...

This may be my "just-when-I-thought-I-was-out-they-pull-me-back-in" blog post.



But I'm gonna let all y'all do the conversing in the comboxes. I'm verklempt.




Monday, September 10, 2018

Tom Piatak: "Be careful what you wish for."

Tom Piatak wisely cautions Catholics against putting confidence in the princes who run our state governments to help clean up the Catholic Church's abuse and corruption problems. Excerpt:

The Pennsylvania grand jury wanted the bishops to end their opposition to extending statutes of limitations for civil lawsuits. If this recommendation were accepted, the principal beneficiaries would include plaintiffs' lawyers and those hurt would be ordinary Catholics who harmed no one, but who would ultimately need to pay for the judgments and settlements and who would also see the infrastructure they built torn apart to enrich the plaintiffs' bar. Note that the Pennsylvania grand jury did not recommend any cap on damages to accompany a change in the statutes of limitations.

Other recommendations are likely to be bolder. The Royal Commission in Australia recommended an end to priestly celibacy and a removal of the seal of the confessional in certain cases. Some Australian jurisdictions have followed up with laws requiring priests to report certain confessions to the police.

How long before a grand jury investigating clerical sexual abuse recommends that the Church allow not just married priests, but gay married priests?

He ends with the admonition to "be careful what you wish for". I would add to this to be careful what you settle for in the way of secular justice. The state can regulate, tax, fine, imprison, etc. but it cannot change things. The people who want to dispose of Trump via an arduous impeachment process would get Pence as the "new boss" if they would miraculously find success. I would welcome punishment of Catholic clergy if their crimes would be uncovered, but I would not but too much stock in it.


Thursday, September 6, 2018

The Crazy Left

Larry Elder's Anthem Protest Article

This article about the NFL national anthem protests by conservative talk radio host Larry Elder is worth revisiting now that Colin Kaepernike (kaepernike.com is already taken   don't you hate it?) has been signed as a major endorser, symbol, icon, etc. Elder asks "Do facts matter?" Here are some of the facts he presents with the numbers; you can decide how to answer the rhetorical question best.

According to the Centers for Disease Control, since 1968 police killings of blacks have declined nearly 75 percent. According to The Washington Post, almost 500 whites were killed by cops in 2015, an average of more than one a day. Two hundred fifty-nine blacks were killed by the police. Most suspects killed by police had a weapon.

Yes; more whites are killed by the police than blacks.

Last year, The Washington Post put the number of unarmed black men killed by the police at 17, less than the number of blacks likely struck by lightning. Twenty-two unarmed whites were killed by the police. Any death that results from police misconduct is one death too many, but the point is that police killing of a suspect is rare, no matter the race of the suspect or the cop. And a police shooting of an unarmed black male is still more rare.

Even the frequency of interactions with police are greater or the same for whites than for blacks:

According to Philippe Lemoine, writing in National Review, a white person is, on average, more likely to have interactions with the police in any year than a black person, 20.7 percent vs. 17.5 percent. It is true that a black person is more likely to have multiple contacts with the police. But according to the data, multiple contacts with the police are rare, as well. Lemoine writes that 1.2 percent of white men have more than three contacts with the police in a year versus 1.5 percent of black men.

Read the whole thing. Burning sportswear might be a dumb thing to do, but continuing to believe the false narrative of widespread police brutality against blacks is even dumber. It amounts to sacrificing everything we have learned by looking at the evidence.



Wednesday, August 29, 2018

Please Read Bishop Morlino's Letter

Bishop Morlino's letter on the abuse scandal is very good. (H/T RedState) Here are several highlights:

If you’ll permit me, what the Church needs now is more hatred! As I have said previously, St. Thomas Aquinas said that hatred of wickedness actually belongs to the virtue of charity. As the Book of Proverbs says “My mouth shall meditate truth, and my lips shall hate wickedness (Prov. 8:7).” It is an act of love to hate sin and to call others to turn away from sin.

The summary is the aphorism "Hate the sin; love the sinner," but the people advocating the second often do it at the expense of the first. It is very difficult to say "It's ok to be gay," and condemn the gay lifestyle as gravely sinful and destructive. But it is, and it needs to be done more especially by those who are called as teachers in the Catholic Church.

There has been a great deal of effort to keep separate acts which fall under the category of now-culturally-acceptable acts of homosexuality from the publically-deplorable acts of pedophilia. That is to say, until recently the problems of the Church have been painted purely as problems of pedophilia — this despite clear evidence to the contrary. It is time to be honest that the problems are both and they are more. To fall into the trap of parsing problems according to what society might find acceptable or unacceptable is ignoring the fact that the Church has never held ANY of it to be acceptable — neither the abuse of children, nor any use of one’s sexuality outside of the marital relationship, nor the sin of sodomy, nor the entering of clerics into intimate sexual relationships at all, nor the abuse and coercion by those with authority.

We've known this, and we have constantly received reflexive disdain for pointing it out. From the Catholic League, 2010: "The conventional wisdom maintains there is a pedophilia crisis in the Catholic Church. Popular as this position is, it is empirically wrong: the data show it has been a homosexual crisis all along. The evidence is not ambiguous, though there is a reluctance to let the data drive the conclusion. But that is a function of politics, not scholarship." But so many others have pointed it out. We're called bigots; we've become used to it. We're realists.

It is time to admit that there is a homosexual subculture within the hierarchy of the Catholic Church that is wreaking great devastation in the vineyard of the Lord. The Church’s teaching is clear that the homosexual inclination is not in itself sinful, but it is intrinsically disordered in a way that renders any man stably afflicted by it unfit to be a priest. And the decision to act upon this disordered inclination is a sin so grave that it cries out to heaven for vengeance, especially when it involves preying upon the young or the vulnerable. Such wickedness should be hated with a perfect hatred. Christian charity itself demands that we should hate wickedness just as we love goodness. But while hating the sin, we must never hate the sinner, who is called to conversion, penance, and renewed communion with Christ and His Church, through His inexhaustible mercy. 

At the same time, however, the love and mercy which we are called to have even for the worst of sinners does not exclude holding them accountable for their actions through a punishment proportionate to the gravity of their offense. In fact, a just punishment is an important work of love and mercy, because, while it serves primarily as retribution for the offense committed, it also offers the guilty party an opportunity to make expiation for his sin in this life (if he willingly accepts his punishment), thus sparing him worse punishment in the life to come. Motivated, therefore, by love and concern for souls, I stand with those calling for justice to be done upon the guilty.

If you get away with sin in this world, there is more likelihood that you end up in Hell. That is common sense applied to spiritual reality.

Obviously I advise everyone to read the entire thing. And when I say everyone I am including myself; I haven't finished it yet.  I need to get back to work now.

Thank you, Bishop Morlino.


Tuesday, August 28, 2018

Msgr. Ronald Knox's The Creed in Slow Motion

There are a lot of great public domain books out there about the Catholic faith. One that I'd been meaning to read for some time but just got around to it is The Creed in Slow Motion by Monsignor Ronald Knox, the famous English priest and Catholic convert. The book is a collection of addresses delivered during World War II; here is an excerpt from the first chapter:

Well, we are starting off this afternoon with “I believe in God”; that ought to last us for the length of a whole sermon, even if we cut it down as much as we can. Let me direct your attention first of all to the use of the word “I”. Surely that's curious, if you come to think of it? Surely saying the Credo ought to be a tremendous congregational act, uniting us in a common profession of faith, and surely at that rate it ought to start “ WE believe”? But it doesn’t, you see, ever take that form. Go out to Lourdes, and watch from the top of the slope tens of thousands of candles flickering there below, in the torch-light procession. So many of them, they don’t look like separate candles; it is just a vast haze of light. And the people who carry them are singing Credo; Credo, not Credimus. And so it is at Mass. If you watch the Gloria, it is we all through, Laudamus te, Benedicimus te, Adoramus te, Glorificamus te, and so on; we lose ourselves in a crowd when we are singing the Gloria. But when we sing the Credo, we are not meant to lose ourselves in a crowd. Every clause of it is the expression of my opinion, for which I am personally responsible. Just so with the Confiteor; it is always Confiteor we say, not Confitemur, even when we are saying it together. Why? Because my sins are my sins, and your sins are your sins; each of us is individually responsible. So it is with the Credo; each of us, in lonely isolation, makes himself or herself responsible for that tremendous statement,” I believe in God”.

Interesting to read since the liturgists had changed the English translation to "We believe" back in the post-Vatican II reforms and it was recently returned to "I believe" in the changes of seven or eight years ago. I like how Father points out that the first person plural is used extensively in the Gloria and also the imagery of how the combination of candles make a brighter light; the "I"s combine form a large "we". The collective is comprised of individual parts, of individuals, in fact.

I will continue to post on this highly enjoyable work. It possesses the clarity of thought, precision and focus which is often lacking in much of today's religious writing discussion.




Wednesday, August 22, 2018

Starting the political prisoner clock for Mark Shea

Last night, Catholic writer Mark Shea predicted that the cult of President Donald Trump would love it if the President began taking political prisoners. "I wonder how long till Trump starts taking political prisoners? His cult would love it," were his actual words.



It's an interesting question. That is why I am starting a count up clock to see how long it will take for Donald Trump to begin holding people in prisons for their political beliefs. It only made sense to start this clock at President Trump's inauguration on January 20 of the year 2017 to make it fair on him. So far we are up to 579 days, 12 hours and some odd minutes.

With regard to his "cult", I'm not sure who is circumscribed by this description. Possibly he means Republicans in general who he claims are racists, and therefore being cult members is just a hop, skip and jump from that. I am not the member of any cults, though, even though I am a Republican. However I am not aware of being a racist, and subconscious racism is supposedly a thing, so it is possible that I am a cult member without realizing it.

Hmmmmm.... I wonder if you can have a mental disorder without realizing it.

UPDATE: (9/11/2018) Well, I decided in the spirit of Catholic fraternity I would remove the clock from the side-bar and just leave it here. In these days of turmoil I don't want to tout the asininity of fellow Catholics overly much.


Wednesday, July 25, 2018

I'm not alone in my Trump v. Democrats take

I get irritated with some of the actions of my choice for President, Donald Trump. But I get irritated with the media and the Democrats even more, as I have said. I'm not alone in this take on things. In this WSJ opinion piece, Ted Van Dyk advises the Dems to "get a grip". Excerpt:

National security and the economy are the two principal issues in any presidential campaign. The Trump record in both those realms should be critiqued by Democrats. They should, in turn, offer credible alternative policies. If they do, and their presidential candidate seems reasonable, Democrats can reclaim the White House in 2020 not through a constitutional crisis but through a free election and with a popular mandate.

My own guess: By 2020, Mr. Trump will have fatigued the public. Voters will be turned off by him, just as they were in turn by the Johnson, Nixon and Carter presidencies. They will want to see another face on their TV sets. The danger is that Democrats by then may have fatigued the public even more.

Fatigue is right. I have some diehard Trump fans for friends who I argue with regularly when politics comes up about how the man could dial it back a little and have an even higher approval record than his current 46%. They argue that he needs to be tough to "drain the swamp" whenever he goes all-caps on Twitter or when he insults political opponents. I just don't see him losing these people if he took a Twitter hiatus, and I think he could pick up a few supporters if he moderated his style while keeping the substance which most conservatives other than the die-hard never-Trumpers support.

But Trump is moderate compared to the Democrats. Whether it's Cory Booker going full-Biblical on the Kavanaugh pick, John Brennan accusing Trump of high-crimes and misdemeanors for his perceived easy treatment of Putin or a gallery window depicting the beheading of the President, the Democrats currently own crazy, and they seem to be attempting to turn mob-fueled, unhinged, violent insanity into a monopoly.

One Grand Gallery, 1000 E Burnside St, Portland, OR 97214.
Phone number is 
(971) 266-4919

Friday, July 20, 2018

#Walkaway Campaign is real

The number of Walkaway Campaign members is now almost 150,000. The new smear is to call them the work of "Russian bots".



I don't agree with this assessment, but I will also point out that not all these people just left the Democratic Party. Some left quite some time ago; one woman whose last name is Holder claims that she is Eric Holder's cousin and she left back when Reagan was running. Others are people like me and some of my online friends who were never Democrats.

But there are others who are the real deal. Click on the #walkAway tag at the bottom of this page to see some Youtube vids of the main type of member, people who have just been red-pilled like Candace Owens.