USF: Traditional, Progressive or Door #3?

I’m sure all sorts of strange noises of shock and exasperation came out of my mouth as I was reading this:

And then this came out before I could even get an article written:

So, you’re going to get a two-fer.  Let’s take them one at a time.

It’s taken me awhile to process this boatload of fantastical theories.  It rather epitomizes why the vast majority of schools bearing the “Catholic” moniker are a danger to society.  I mean, people actually believe what is spewed here is Catholic!

Traditional, Progressive, Both?

How about neither?  I choose door number three.  Dissenting is probably what that door would be labeled.  No progress is being made.  In fact, we’re kind of stepping back to the decadence and debauchery of ancient Rome or Greece at the University of San Francisco.  Without a doubt, it’s anything but traditional unless you’re counting lunacy as some sort of tradition.

The tall, dark wooden doors of the St. Ignatius Church are open every day from dusk ’til dawn, yet a relatively small fraction of the USF’s students are seen among the pews. Metal crosses decorate the front walls of many classrooms in the Lone Mountain building, though only a handful can be seen in any of the newer classrooms down the hill. The prevalence of the school’s religious identity appears to have slowly but surely weakened on campus over the years.

The school’s religious identity has slowly but surely weakened?  I don’t think so.  Unless slow and sure means 100 miles per hour in a Midwestern thunderstorm.  That said, most of USF sees things through a myopic lens, so 50 years for them is FOREVER.  Wait until they find out how long eternal life and hell last.  What a wakeup call that’s going to be.  Unfortunately, I’m reasonably sure it’s not considered much there.

A majority of students are mainly attracted to USF because of its liberal and open-minded reputation. While the University is proud of its close connection to the progressive city of San Francisco, it also has a deep Jesuit Catholic identity. At times, it’s hard for some people, students especially, to reconcile these two aspects of USF.

Deep Jesuit identity?  Again, people need look at the history in total.  It’s not just one person’s lifetime.   Does anyone see the “Jesuit Catholic identity” of their founders in the vast majority of today’s Jesuits?  One would have to wonder if these kids actually know the names of Jesuit saints.  There are not two aspects of USF, just the one, liberal, open-minded one, progressive (or the stupid one, as those of us with some knowledge and sanity would say).

As she cautiously sipped her freshly brewed latte in the cafeteria in the University Center, Consuelo Reyes, a sophomore communications major, explained her initial attraction to USF. Reyes said, “[I could] see honesty, progressiveness, sincerity, and integrity rooted in the values that this school had when it came to education.”

How about Catholicism?  Anyone? Not important?  Didn’t think so.

At the beginning of the 2015-2016 school year, USF President the Rev. Paul Fitzgerald, S.J. spoke at the annual faculty and staff meeting. During his talk, he proposed a conversation on the Jesuit university experience. In an email response to questions about his proposal, Fitzgerald wrote, “[I] asked deans and directors to have conversations with their team members about how well we are fulfilling the vision statement that we articulated back in 2008.” He explained that the first round of conversations would discuss USF’s Catholic and Jesuit tradition while the other “four essential features” of this tradition would be part of later conversations.

As director of USF’s University Ministry, Julia Dowd has been involved in these conversations at USF. She said that although Catholicism gets a bad rap in society these days, “It’s important to claim who we actually are because if we don’t, other people get to claim what ‘religious’ looks like.

Ummm… Honey, you don’t get to explain what Catholicism is.  You don’t get to define it.  You don’t get to shape or change it.  It is what it is, and anyone can look to Her teachings to see Her.  What does “religious” look like?  Who the heck cares when the school you attend doesn’t even teach the True Faith?

A year ago, San Francisco Archbishop Salvatore Cordileone sparked conflict with many local Catholics with his decision to require teachers at Catholic high schools to sign a morality clause that depicts sex outside of marriage and same sex relationships as “evil.”

Holy Moses!  Do your homework, dear student reporter!  THIS IS WHAT THE CATHOLIC CHURCH TEACHES!!!  This isn’t some new and exciting teaching Archbishop Cordileone invented.  HE WAS CITING THE TEACHING OF THE HOLY CATHOLIC CHURCH!  Get it through your thick skulls, liberals.  If you don’t like it, fine.  Just admit that it is so and that you dissent from it.  Stop this whole “Isn’t the Archbishop a great big meanie?!” routine and admit that you HATE the teaching of the Faith you profess.  I mean, a little honesty would be nice.

In opposition to the archbishop’s edict, 100 prominent Roman Catholic donors and church members, including many Catholic educators, former Catholic Charities board members and executives, and the father of New England Patriots quarterback Tom Brady Jr., published a full-page open letter in the San Francisco Chronicle that asked Pope Francis to replace Archbishop Salvatore Cordileone. The signers wrote, “Archbishop Cordileone has fostered an atmosphere of division and intolerance.”

Or, as most of us can see, the Archbishop is teaching the exact same thing as Pope Francis.  You know what’s funny?  The non-Catholic flaming liberals point this out on a regular basis.  Sadly, they’re a little more honest than the Catholics. 

Among the signers of the letter was Charles Geschke, whose family name is on USF’s Geschke Center and who served USF’s Board of Trustees for about 18 years.

Via a phone conversation, Geschke who went to a Jesuit high school, a Jesuit university, and taught at a Jesuit college for about five years, said he signed the letter because, “As a lifelong Catholic and very involved in Catholic causes, I didn’t feel he [Cordileone] represented my viewpoints on what it means to be a Christian in a pluralistic world.”

Oh Mr. High and Mighty, heaven forbid the Archbishop doesn’t represent your viewpoints!  Because, you know, that’s oh so important.  The megalomania of these rich, liberal Catholics is staggering.  Pluralistic world?  Does the word “missionaries” mean anything to you?  Again, might be nice if you knew just a bit about the Jesuit missionaries after your Jesuit high school and college tenure.

The archbishop’s action has made it more difficult for some students to associate with Catholicism because of his exclusivity. When asked about the significance of Cordileone’s stance, Reyes said, “It’s important to recognize and respect each individual student’s decision to either engage religiously throughout their academic career or not.”

How about this?  It’s important for the students’ moral souls to teach them just what the Catholic Faith is.  What a thought!  Imagine a Catholic school trying to help people gain heaven!  Nobody is putting a gun to these students’ heads and making them accept Catholicism.  They can accept or reject it, but that doesn’t mean a Catholic school or a Catholic bishop shouldn’t do everything possible to teach authentic Catholicism.  The only threats being made here are to the Archbishop. 

In addition to the archbishop sending a bold and conservative message to the San Francisco Catholic community, last summer Fitzgerald faced a situation which seemed to represent the tension between Catholic principles and his own apparently more liberal views. Fitzgerald attended the San Francisco Pride Parade with others from USF in support of LGBTQ+ members. This happened the same week he removed a tweet an assistant in the university’s communications office sent out under USF’s Twitter account in support of the U.S. Supreme Court ruling that made same-sex marriage the law of the land. When the tweet was criticized by conservative Catholic groups, Fitzgerald issued a statement that said the tweet did not reflect the views of USF. This caused some confusion and upset among USF students: if even their own president was having trouble expressing to his multi-layered identity, how were they supposed to have an easier time?

Oh, believe me, Fr. Fitzgerald doesn’t have any Catholic principles, so his liberal views aren’t in conflict with anything other than authentic Catholicism and he really doesn’t give a rip about that.  I’m quite sure the only reason for a tweet retraction is that someone with money wasn’t too happy.  Money is the only thing that could possibly stop Fr. Fitzgerald from erasing every last trace of Catholicism.  Might be the only reason crosses still exist on that campus.

“It’s clearly a sensitive and relevant topic, I mean for students for faculty for staff, everyone, for Father Fitzgerald. Right?” said Conor Smith, a USF resident minister. “So I think it’s a great question to be asking like where does the university stand on some of these issues and is the university’s stance necessarily reflective of the student body and the staff and faculty who work here.”

LOL!  It sounds like the liberals a starting to turn on each other.  I’m all for Conor Smith’s proposal.  Let’s hear the answer, Fr. Fitzgerald!  Well?  Come on, let’s just put the cards on the table.  I’m sure young Conor doesn’t understand the careful balance of donor money.  We probably should let Conor in on the fact that money really does make the liberals’ world go ‘round.

The identity formation dilemma for students at USF is nuanced and multifaceted. Attempting to address all parts of a student’s identity and not compromise their progressive ideals (for those who have them) is not an easy task for a Jesuit university to accomplish, though it is critical to acknowledge the multiple layers of students identities — which seems to be the goal of these conversations. The root of the tension for USF lies in balancing students’ identities with modern times, all while maintaining the core Jesuit and Catholic education principles.

Interviews with various members of USF’s community revealed a range of reactions to this tension. Reyes explained her battle with this tension and her concerns about coming across as hypocritical. Although she is currently not practicing Catholicism as she has in the past, she is worried that if she were to return to practicing, her progressive values would conflict with Catholic rules.

Let me just clear this up for you, Ms. Reyes.  Yes, your progressive values would be in conflict with Catholic truths (or doctrines, as those who actually practice the Faith call them.)  Full disclosure: you will also most likely find yourself in conflict with the Catechism, Canon Law, and a lot of disciplines.  Catholicism isn’t for wimps.  We are the Church of martyrs.  Conflict is our middle name, whether it be internal or societal.

Sophomore media studies major Jennifer Kang said she hasn’t experienced any sort of religious pressures at USF. “I never felt like an outsider as a non-religious person,” said Kang, who also observed, “USF is pretty conscious of change and current events and is willing to hold important conversations about it.”

A simple “Gag!” will suffice here.  That’s because USF is about as non-religious as you, Ms. Kang,  unless moral relativism is now considered a religion.

Connor Smith, who worked for a USF volunteer program in the Philippines after he graduated from Boston College, said, ”Working with Jesuits and working and going to school at Jesuit establishments — that is the educational model and framework that includes things that have become really important to me.

Smith took a moment to share his own complexities of having a Catholic identity and being a gay man, since he believes the church’s conservative approach to social issues will carry on. “You work for a university that can’t necessarily ‘come out’ so to speak and support gay issues or any other issues that the church is terrible at addressing,” said Smith. After a moment of reflection, Smith shrugged and sighed, saying, “To keep that identity as both progressive and a Catholic is hard.”

Connor Smith just spelled it out even if he doesn’t know it.  These two “identities” (they are really choices) are completely incompatible.  If they are claiming both, one of them is a lie.

Now let’s look at Coach Azzi’s comments.  Totally intimidating don’t you think?  First she says:

Azzi said of anyone who “has an issue” [with her same-sex attraction lifestyle]: “I don’t want to coach them anyway.”

And then she says:

They first told four players over lunch, and their response — and that of their teammates later — was ‘overwhelmingly supportive.’

Um, yeah.  Coach Azzi, let’s think about this.  Do they have a choice?!?! You just said you didn’t want to coach people who didn’t accept your lifestyle, and then you say that they were overwhelmingly supportive?   You’ve basically said “Get in line or you don’t play here!” No pressure on the players here. How so very “tolerant” you are!

Lastly, there’s this:

The Chronicle quoted one student saying, “Frankly, I don’t see how this can have a negative effect on our program. If someone loses interest in our program because they hear that two of our coaches are married to one another, they are clearly missing the point.”

Who’s missing the point?!?!  You know, the one about the University of San Francisco supposedly being a Catholic school.  Don’t feel bad, anonymous student.  Most people at USF, teacher or student, seem to miss that minor little point.  Grooooooaaaaaannnnnn!

Just one last bonus for you from Fr. Fitzgerald:

Coach Azzi has entered into a civil marriage according to the laws of the land,” Fr. Fitzgerald stated. “We will afford her every benefit and legal protection which she is due. The university is a Catholic Jesuit institution that is purposefully diverse and dedicated to inclusivity.

It’s so wonderful to see Fr. Fitzgerald follow in the tradition of so many of the Jesuits who were martyred rather than to ever follow “law of the land” that was contradictory to the Faith.  Oh, wait.  Maybe not so much.  Honestly, how do the Jesuits like Fr. Fitzgerald and his ilk live with themselves?  I mean, it’s just EMBARRASSING!  Certainly doesn’t sound like the heavy hitting Jesuits who built the order!  Anyone see these saints putting forth the drivel of Fr. Fitzgerald?

And touching our Society, be it known to you that we have made a league – all the Jesuits in the world – cheerfully to carry the cross you shall lay upon us, and never to despair your recovery, while we have a man left to enjoy your Tyburn, or to be racked with your torments or consumed with your prisons. The expense is reckoned, the enterprise is begun; it is of God, it cannot be withstood. So the faith was planted; so it must be restored. ~Edmund Campion (Restored, USF, not destroyed! I think you’re mixing up some letters.)

To have prevented one single sin is reward enough for the labors and efforts of a whole lifetime. ~Saint Ignatius (It would seem like 97% of the modern Jesuits have gotten this one completely backwards.)

Many, many people hereabouts are not becoming Christians for one reason only: there is nobody to make them Christians. ~Francis Xavier (Who knew the Jesuit schools of America would resemble Francis Xavier’s missionary territory?!)

Freedom of belief is pernicious, it is nothing but the freedom to be wrong.  ~Robert Bellarmine  (Take that all you moral relativist!)

Better that only a few Catholics should be left, staunch and sincere in their religion, than that they should, remaining many, desire as it were, to be in collusion with the Church’s enemies and in conformity with the open foes of our faith.  ~Peter Canisius  (You modern Jesuit college types have fallen far away from the inventors of Jesuit education!)

So, please USF, how about you spare us all of the “Jesuit Catholic identity”delusions and admit you gave that up a while back?!


Sorry to Break it to You: Wishes Aren’t Ponies

Try not to cry on the keyboard when  you read this.  Some seemed very determined to inflict their sins on children.  It’s just really, really sad that the liberal agenda, all the way around and more often than not, directly targets children.  It really shouldn’t be surprising, though.  There is much historical basis for targeting children in the destruction of a country.  Why would anyone think this would change?  We haven’t learned from history but are repeating it.  When will we learn?

Emphasis from here on is mine.

Terry Weldon, who runs the blog Queering The Church, believes that Pope Francis’ “Amoris Laetitia” did not denounce gay parents in the 256-page document. While Weldon recognizes that the pope did reiterate his stand on gay marriage, it could be wrong to assume that this same stand also extends to same-sex parenting.

Amoris Laetitia, Gay Marriage and ‘Certain Stability’

Weldon boosted his argument by citing another passage from the pope’s message. “We need to acknowledge the great variety of family situations that can offer a certain stability,” wrote Pope Francis in the document. Weldon told Gay Star News that “certain stability” could also pertain to same-sex parenting and even gay adoption.

Hopes and wishes aren’t reality, Terry.  You might live in a world… Scrap that! You definitely live in a world where science and reality have been suspended.  The sad thing is that you can’t escape reality without injury.

I’m going to have to assume that Terry Weldon is hoping that people cannot Google.  Either that or he can’t handle such an easy task himself.  Regardless, he’s urging people to believe fantasy not backed by facts.

Let me help you, Terry.  (Google, Terry, it’s a beautiful thing.)

…the Pope has rejected the idea of same-sex marriage as an “anthropological regression” and stressed that when it comes to adoption, “every person needs a male father and a female mother.”


“If there is a union of a private nature, there is neither a third party nor is society affected,” he writes. “Now, if the union is given the category of marriage and they are given adoption rights, there could be children affected.”

Every person needs a male father and a female mother that can help them shape their identity,” says Pope Francis.

Explaining further, he says, “It is often argued that a child would be better cared for by a same-sex couple rather than in an orphanage or an institution. Those two situations are not optimal. The problem is that the State does not do what it has to do.”

 “They should streamline the procedure of adoption, which are never-ending, so that these children can have a home,” says the pontiff. “One failure of the State does not justify another failure of the State. The underlying issue must be addressed. More than a marriage law so that people of the same sex can adopt, we have to improve the adoption laws, which are excessively bureaucratic and, in their current implementation, encourage corruption.”

In short, the Holy Father says not to add insult to the injury which is the adoption bureaucracy.  Let’s not fail the children again by allowing same-sex couples to adopt.  Let’s fix the system so that children can get what they need: a male father and a female mother who can properly help them to shape their identity.

And, Terry, here’s more from Google to disprove your silly pondering:

Pope not happy about the same-sex adoption proposal in Malta:

Pope Francis gave his blessing to a referendum that would ban marriage and adoption rights for same-sex couples in Slovakia:

Pope’s comments (as Cardinal Bergoglio) on same-sex adoption:

And then there’s this from the then-cardinal:

I write these lines to each of you who are in the four monasteries of Buenos Aires.  The Argentine people will face, in the coming weeks, a situation whose outcome may gravely injure the family.  This refers to the project of the law regarding marriage of persons of the same sex.  What is at stake here is the identity and survival of the family:  father, mother and children.  At stake are the lives of so many children who will be discriminated against in advance, depriving them of the human maturation that God wanted to be given with a father and a mother.  At stake is the outright rejection of the law of God, engraved also in our hearts. 

I remember a quote from St. Therese when talking about her childhood illness.  She says that the envy of the Devil wanted deprive her family of the entrance to the Carmel of her older sister.  Here also is the envy of the Devil, by which sin entered into the world, which cunningly seeks to destroy the image of God: man and woman receive the mandate to grow, multiply and subdue the earth.  Do not be naive: it is not a simple political struggle; it is the destructive attempt toward God’s plan.  It is not a mere legislative project (this is only the instrument) but a ”movement” of the father of lies that seeks to confuse and deceive the children of God.  Jesus tells us that to defend ourselves against this lying accuser, he will send us the Spirit of Truth.

So, Terry, no, it would not be wrong to assume that the Church’s “gay marriage” ban also extends to “gay adoption.”  It would be wrong of you to assume that “certain stability” would ever include same-sex couples.  As the Holy Father stated, that is “a ‘movement’ of the father of lies that seeks to confuse and deceive the children of God.”

You Keep Using That Word!

Word of the Pontificate: Integration

What in the heck does it mean to the Church? To the liberal dissenter, it means to make everyone the same (like any good socialist would think). Everyone gets to do the same thing no matter what they’ve done. It seems to be their new word for moral relativism.

Integration actually means to combine or bring together. It doesn’t mean we’re all the same, but we come together and make up a whole. Or at least, this is what Pope Francis appears to mean by it. Whatever the meaning, it certainly doesn’t mean Communion for all. How do I know? The Pope said so.

Despite this, Fr. Antonio Spadaro (editor of La Civiltà Cattolica) and Archbishop Blaise Cupich continue to make such fantastical statements as “without limits on integration, as appeared in the past” or “I wouldn’t bar anyone from Communion!” By the way, I totally take Archbishop Cupich at his word, which is why he should never be a cardinal. I’m pretty sure someone could walk up to him wearing a “Gravely depraved and proud” tee-shirt and Cupich would hand Our Lord them because, you know, they need to be “fully integrated,” too.

What has been the Pope’s only direct statement on “integration” and the Eucharist? Well, people seem to have forgotten that one, so here’s a reminder for them, as well as Fr. Spadaro and Archbishop Cupich:

Being integrated into the Church does not mean “taking communion.”

Yeah, liberals, that was from the Holy Father less than two months before Amoris Laetitia dropped. As usual, you oh so conveniently overlooked that one and went for your own interpretation. Also notice the example he gave of a couple in an “irregular situation” who are integrating WITHOUT receiving Communion.

My heart goes out to those who are in an “irregular situation.” The Church does need to help them and, quite frankly, leaders like Archbishop Cupich are a huge reason why many people find themselves in the situation in the first place. They failed to educate them big time, and when they do get educated, they realize that they are now in “irregular situation” and they become quite bitter. The liberal pastors spent so much time trying to instill their doctrine of moral relativism into people that they lead them into more and more “irregular situations” despite the perennial Church teachings to the contrary. They insisted from the get-go that doctrine was going to change, and the faithful paid for it, just as they did with Humanae Vitae. The consequences of the lack of authentic teaching have been devastating for the family.

I wonder if these liberal dissenting members of the clergy realize that they could quite literally have hell to pay for the destruction of the family? Their agenda is going to mean nothing on judgment day, and they’ll suddenly realize, “Hey, there is a difference between wheat and chaff and sheep and goats. We’re not all the same!”

Let’s all pray that those finding themselves in “irregular situations” can find true integration into the Church instead of what’s being peddled by Fr. Spadaro, Archbishop Cupich, most of the Jesuit order, etc., which puts them further at odds with the teachings of the Church.


Top Things Wrong with America’s Top 5

America Magazine, that is. Fr. James Martin, SJ, (because what other order would put out this level of hooey?) has spoken.  Not surprisingly, he has produced an odd little video starring the editors of America.  I’m thinking they might not have actually read Amoris Laetitia, but regardless, this video has little to do with the actual document and it’s got this really annoying disco soundtrack, to boot.  Let go of the 70s, Fr. Martin!  You can do it!

Besides the editors of America, I’m guessing more than a few nominal Catholics haven’t actually read the document, nor will they.  They’ll just take the Fr. Martin and ilk paraphrasing of it as the fifth gospel.  Wonder why the editors of America actually don’t encourage you to read it???  Try “Let’s just keep the flock ignorant and tell them what we think it means.”

First, we all need to give a big thanks to One Mad Dad who, through his technical wizardry, captured the transcript so we don’t have to actually listen to the background music. If you want to watch it, just google the title and Fr. James Martin, SJ and it’ll pop right up.

Here we go! 

Top 5 – Amoris Laetitia

Fr. Martin kicks off this comedy of errors: Pope Francis’ groundbreaking new document, Amoris Laetitia, “The Joy of Love,” asks the Church to meet people where they are, consider the complexities of people’s lives and respect people’s consciences when it comes to moral decisions. The apostolic exhortation is mainly a document that reflects on and encourages families, but it is also the Pope’s reminder that the Church should avoid simply judging people and imposing rules on them without considering their struggles. His goal is to help families, in fact, everyone, experience God’s love. All this may require what the Pope calls “new pastoral methods.” So, let’s look at the top five takeaways from Amoris Laetitia.

First thing, please don’t use these “5 takeaways” as the document.  That would be plain silly.  If you want to start by taking these sheeples’ comments and using “ctrl f” to search the document, you won’t find any of the “takeaways” accurately quoted in the document.  Can you say “spin,” Fr. Martin?  It should be relatively easy, since you are the master of it.  Let’s just go over some of the ridiculous.

Right off the bat, Fr. Martin uses that catchy phrase proponents of moral relativism love: “Meet people where they are.”  Quite frankly, this has always been just a fluffy way to state the obvious.  Where else do you meet people?  Of course, they’re not going for the “greet” version of meet.  They’re talking more about “coming down to their level.”  What Fr. Martin doesn’t say is that he pretty much wants the Church to stay down at that level.  This annoys me to the hilt, because I am a mother and a teacher and have been encouraging people to “grow up” instead of staying at some stunted plateau.  Does anyone really think the Holy Father wants us to remain spiritually stunted?  Well, I suppose those who think sin is determined merely by what we think it is are hoping that’s what he wants.  However, if you take the document in its entirety, how could anyone in good conscience say that?  Internal forum, maybe?

Really, the phrase “internal forum” needs to be discussed before moving on.  The dissenters from Church teaching would have you believe this means you can have a discussion with yourself and decide if you think your sin is really a sin.  “So what do you think, self?  Do you really think that God thinks sleeping with someone outside of marriage is a sin?  Nope?  OK, we’re good.  Bring on Communion!”  Seriously, people actually believe this, and the Fr. Martins of the world aren’t going to do a darn thing to dispel that error.  Let’s just look at what it really means, because that ain’t it.  

It’s all about marriage and the family in Amoris Laetitia, so let’s go with these explanations:


Thanks, gentlemen!  You notice that they actually back up their definitions with Canon Law and previous popes?  Fr. Martin can’t actually do that, because it would undermine his argument. 

Next, Fr. Martin says the Holy Father asks us to “respect peoples’ consciences when it comes to moral decisions.”  Not so much.  We should take them into consideration, and more often than not, there’s the directive for pastors to help rightly form consciences.  Fr. Martin consistently ignores the latter and distorts the former as “we must respect peoples’ actions based on their consciences.”  Would Fr. Martin say that about a murderer?!?!?  My guess is not so much.  He doesn’t want you to think about applying this theory across the board.  He only wants you to apply it to his pet sins.

Not to be outdone by Father Martin, Associate Editor Olga Segura continues:

The Church needs to understand families and individuals in all their complexity. The Church needs to meet people where they are, so pastors should avoid judgments that don’t take into account the complexity of various situations. In other words, one size does not fit all and black-and-white thinking is not helpful. People are encouraged to live by the Gospel, but they should also be welcomed into a Church that appreciates their struggles and treats them with mercy. Overall, Pope Francis calls for an approach of accompaniment.

Actions can be judged regardless of the situation, Olga.  What cannot be judged is the culpability of a person.  That’s what Amoris Laetitia says starting on paragraph 303.  It doesn’t say that “irregular situations” are good.  Irregular situations are never good, but the culpability in the situation may mitigate the person committing the act.  This is and has always been Church teaching.  So, when Olga says, “In other words [OMM: you know there’s going to be trouble with this] one size does not fit all and black and white thinking isn’t helpful,” she is flat out wrong.  The “rules” DO fit us all.  The only thing that isn’t a one size fits all is our culpability based on how one’s conscience is formed.  Is it formed well?  Is it poorly formed? And what’s the pastoral remedy put forth by the Pope for all of this?  HELPING PEOPLE TO RIGHTLY FORM THEIR CONSCIENCES! 

Olga goes onto say that people should live by the gospel, “but they should be welcomed into a church that appreciates their struggles and treats them with mercy.”  Wouldn’t we all say “Duh!” to that?  Sadly, that’s really not where the America crowd is headed.  Their idea of mercy is to rubberstamp all sorts of immoral behavior.  The Pope urges the Church to accompany sinners NOT THE SIN.

Executive Editor Tim Reidy adds:

The role of conscience is paramount in decision-making. Individual conscience needs to be better incorporated into the Church’s practice. In other words, the traditional belief that conscience is the final arbiter of the moral life needs to be recovered. The Church is supposed to form consciences, not to replace them, says the Pope. And while it is true a person’s conscience needs to be formed by Church teaching, our conscience does much more than just follow rules. Conscience also recognizes with a certain moral security what God asks of us.

Um, hello? When did it get lost and who lost it? I’m reasonably sure that was Tim, not me.  The problem with his statement is that he doesn’t now nor did he ever understand this traditional belief.  I’m thinking he missed this:

Authority in this case, the Magisterium, may well speak of matters moral, but only in the sense of presenting conscience with material for its own deliberation. Conscience would retain, however, the final word. Some authors reduce conscience in this its aspect of final arbiter to the formula: conscience is infallible.

Nonetheless, at this point, a contradiction can arise. It is of course undisputed that one must follow a certain conscience or at least not act against it. But whether the judgment of conscience or what one takes to be such, is always right, indeed whether it is infallible, is another question. For if this were the case, it would mean that there is no truth—at least not in moral and religious matters, which is to say, in the areas which constitute the very pillars of our existence. For judgments of conscience can contradict each other. Thus there could be at best the subject’s own truth, which would be reduced to the subject’s sincerity. No door or window would lead from the subject into the broader world of being and human solidarity. Whoever thinks this through will come to the realization that no real freedom exists then and that the supposed pronouncements of conscience are but the reflection of social circumstances. This should necessarily lead to the conclusion that placing freedom in opposition to authority overlooks something. There must be something deeper, if freedom and, therefore, human existence are to have meaning.

 Managing Editor Kerry Weber:

Divorced and remarried Catholics should be more fully integrated into the Church. Divorced and remarried people are not excommunicated. Rather, they are members of our Church. We can help them feel more welcome in the Church in a few pastoral ways, says the Pope: by looking at the specifics of their situation, by having priests counsel them privately in what’s called an “internal forum,” and by respecting that the final decision about their level of participation in the Church is ultimately left to their conscience.

Oh, honey, does what you said sound like this? 299.

I am in agreement with the many Synod Fathers who observed that “the baptized who are divorced and civilly remarried need to be more fully integrated into Christian communities in the variety of ways possible, while avoiding any occasion of scandal.  The logic of integration is the key to their pastoral care, a care which would allow them not only to realize that they belong to the Church as the body of Christ, but also to know that they can have a joyful and fruitful experience in it.  They are baptized; they are brothers and sisters; the Holy Spirit pours into their hearts gifts and talents for the good of all.  Their participation can be expressed in different ecclesial services, which necessarily requires discerning which of the various forms of exclusion currently practised in the liturgical, pastoral, educational and institutional framework, can be surmounted.  Such persons need to feel not as excommunicated members of the Church, but instead as living members, able to live and grow in the Church and experience her as a mother who welcomes them always, who takes care of them with affection and encourages them along the path of life and the Gospel.  This integration is also needed in the care and Christian upbringing of their children, who ought to be considered most important”.

Again, “internal forum” doesn’t mean what you propose it means. 

Associate Editor Ashley McKinless:

We should no longer talk about people “living in sin.” In a sentence, [OMM: a drastically altered sentence with some fancy omissions] reflecting a new approach, the Pope says, “It can no longer simply be said that those living in ‘irregular situations’ are living in a state of mortal sin.” Other members of non-traditional families, like single mothers, need to be offered understanding, comfort, and acceptance. When it comes to these people, the Church needs to stop applying moral laws as if, in the Pope’s vivid words, “they were stones to throw at a person’s life.”

Whoa!  Whoa!  Whoa!   Young lady, by altering just a few words, you not only misquoted the pope, you completely changed the meaning of the statement the Pope made.  Let’s look at what he ACTUALLY said (emphasis will show what this babe did):

301. For an adequate understanding of the possibility and need of special discernment in certain “irregular” situations, one thing must always be taken into account, lest anyone think that the demands of the Gospel are in any way being compromised.  The Church possesses a solid body of reflection concerning mitigating factors and situations.  Hence it is can no longer simply be said that all those in any “irregular” situation are living in a state of mortal sin and are deprived of sanctifying grace.


305. For this reason, a pastor cannot feel that it is enough simply to apply moral laws to those living in “irregular” situations, as if they were stones to throw at people’s lives.

Are America followers really that gullible? Nowhere did it say the Church cannot apply moral laws, yet that is what the America staff would like you to believe.  It says it’s not enough to simply apply the laws.  Again – DUH!  Honestly, I’m not sure what the Pope dealt with in his country, but I can’t remember the last time I heard of a priest saying, “You are sinning.  Go away!” 

And, really, single moms?!?! What the heck was that?  What Ashley and the other editors really wanted to say was homosexual couples, but they knew that analogy would never fly, so they threw out the most sympathetic red-herring they could find. 

Editor-in-Chief Matt Malone, SJ:

Traditional teachings on marriage are affirmed, but the Church should not burden people with unrealistic expectations.

Errrrrk!  Stop right there.  Can anyone show me where that is in Amoris Laetitia?  I didn’t remember reading it.  Went back and did a search and cannot find it anywhere.  Last time I checked, all things were possible with God, not unrealistic.  Does America really think the Church is asking us to do an impossible thing?

Father Malone continued:

As the Church has always taught, marriage is between one man and one woman, marriage is indissoluble, and same-sex marriage is not considered. At the same time, the Church has often put upon people what Francis calls an artificial theological ideal of marriage that is removed from people’s everyday lives. At times, these ideals have been a tremendous burden. And to that end, priests need to be better-trained to understand the complexities of people’s married lives.

And the actual statement?

36. We also need to be humble and realistic, acknowledging that at times the way we present our Christian beliefs and treat other people has helped contribute to today’s problematic situation.  We need a healthy dose of self-criticism.  Then too, we often present marriage in such a way that its unitive meaning, its call to grow in love and its ideal of mutual assistance are overshadowed by an almost exclusive insistence on the duty of procreation.  Nor have we always provided solid guidance to young married couples, understanding their timetables, their way of thinking and their concrete concerns.  At times we have also proposed a far too abstract and almost artificial theological ideal of marriage, far removed from the concrete situations and practical possibilities of real families.  This excessive idealization, especially when we have failed to inspire trust in God’s grace, has not helped to make marriage more desirable and attractive, but quite the opposite.

Again, ask yourselves why there are so reticent to accurately quote Amoris Laetitia. Also note that the Pope’s writing has nothing to do with same-sex marriage, and the attempt to tie it to that is nothing more than dishonest.  Nice try, America editors!  Nice try!

Want to see what it actually says about same-sex marriage and same-sex “union”?

  1. No one can think that the weakening of the family as that natural society founded on marriage will prove beneficial to society as a whole.  The contrary is true: it poses a threat to the mature growth of individuals, the cultivation of community values and the moral progress of cities and countries.  There is a failure to realize that only the exclusive and indissoluble union between a man and a woman has a plenary role to play in society as a stable commitment that bears fruit in new life.  We need to acknowledge the great variety of family situations that can offer a certain stability, but de facto or same-sex unions, for example, may not simply be equated with marriage.  No union that is temporary or closed to the transmission of life can ensure the future of society.  But nowadays who is making an effort to strengthen marriages, to help married couples overcome their problems, to assist them in the work of raising children and, in general, to encourage the stability of the marriage bond?

“…de facto or same-sex unions …may not simply be equated with marriage.”  Wait, didn’t you try to do exactly that, Fr. Malone? You just slid it right in there.  In fact, Father, same-sex unions are not only “not considered,” as you say, they are not considered marriage.  Period.  End of story.  The Holy Father does not equate it with marriage.

Aaaaand Fr. Martin brings it all home for those not likely to read the document:

Overall, Amoris Laetitia asks the Church to help families of every sort and people in every state of life. They need to know that, even in their imperfections, they can be homes for God’s love, as well as places where people will experience that love. The new apostolic exhortation offers a vision of a pastoral and merciful Church that welcomes and encourages families and all people to experience the joy of love.

You know what, Father Martin? You’re doing what you always do.  You make these statements, but you never suggest how.  We can only find joy of love in TRUTH.  Yes, there is reality in our imperfections, but there shouldn’t be satisfaction in them.  This doesn’t lead us to the truth.

Moms are always going to go back to the analogy of what happens when you touch a hot stove.  If you touch it, it’s going to burn you.  In your reality, editorial staff of America, it’s only going to burn you if you think it’s hot.  This isn’t the Truth.  It’s going to burn you no matter how you perceive it.  Now, do we need to teach our children this by letting them get burned? Do we tell them they should just never attempt cooking and to stay out of the kitchen? Not if we are a loving parent.  We explain it over and over again, if necessary.  That is the loving course of action.  Just letting our fellow Catholics “touch the hot stove” to form their conscience isn’t the loving way to go.  It could end up as a minor injury or it could end up as a permanent, painful scar. We must explain the reality of what will happen over and over again.  Is a parent judgmental to give that “homily” time and again?  Nope.  They are protective.  That’s how our pastors should be.  They should teach us over and over again until we understand, no matter how uncomfortable it makes us.  They should help us rightly form our consciences so we can understand the truth that brings us true joy.


It’s pathetic when young college students can’t tell a priest from a member of the KKK. (Profanity warning: One of the ignorant youngsters decidedly wanted to further show his ignorance by using an “f” bomb in his message.) Let me help you politically correct morons who prefer to yell “Hate!” when they see white rather than actually look at a person, dressed in a white robe, with a Rosary around his waist taking a leisurely stroll around campus. 

Here are members of the KKK:


 Here are members of the Dominican Order of Preachers:


Anyone see the difference?  Well, here are a couple:  How about the Klan’s pointy hood with eyeholes cut in them versus the Rosaries around the waist of the Dominicans?  Another difference?  Klansmen robes are meant to hide cowardly bullies who are doing evil deeds so no one can differentiate one from another.  The white robes of the Dominicans?  Those are meant to draw attention and show a difference between the wearer and the average Joe, like most other uniforms of one type or another.  Need a priest?  Need a police officer? There’s one!

It would be so nice if people could exercise a little common sense before throwing themselves into a tizzy and trying to find a so called “safe space” to hide in like a blanky fort.  First, how many Klansmen put on their robes and wander around campus, by themselves, without their hood on?  Granted, they’re not too bright, but do you really think they have a death wish?  Also, how many Klansmen wander into the local yogurt shop for fro-yo wearing their Klan robes?  Oh yeah, that happens all the time.

Anyone want to bet we’re going to hear how these priests shouldn’t wear their habits because people might mistake them for Klansmen?  Or that it’s just too traumatic for college students to see white robes, you know, due to “history.”  5,4,3,… (FYI, the Dominicans have been wearing white a lot longer than the KKK.) 

Seriously, people have got to learn to pause before whining and crying about every little thing.  We certainly have raised a nation of clueless wimps who get traumatized over the slightest thing like someone wearing a white robe or someone writing Trump slogans in chalk.  Oooohhhhh, how scary!  How do these students even leave their dorm rooms with the agoraphobia they’ve developed?

So, if anyone even remotely suggests that any member of the clergy ditch their habits, clerics, etc., because some snowflake says they are reduced to fear and trembling, the answer should be an unequivocal “NO!”  The religious in this world cannot cave to the insanity. That would cause even more harm to these kids who have, apparently, been failed by the rest of the adults in their lives.  The Dominicans need to keep the white robes and awesome capes and stand out as much as possible.  The college kids are lucky to have them around and to have them available to them, no matter who they are, what they’ve done, or what faith they profess.  These prissy little college students need to become more familiar with them to understand how ridiculous they’re acting.  Forget teaching tolerance – the Dominicans can teach them true charity, something much better than so-called tolerance.  People are being killed and martyred all over world by “the offended,” yet we are turning ourselves into a nation of the “offended.”  For all the tolerance they preach at these campuses, there seems to be very little.  Too bad they know so little of history and fail to recognize how totalitarian it’s going to get if we stay on our current course.  They’ll be no better than the Klansmen who scare them.  They’ll just be in a different “Klan.”  I mean, they basically just accused this guy of “Being a Priest while White.”  Racist much, little college kids?  I’m betting they might have taken just a bit more time before hyperventilating if this had been one of the black Dominicans shown above.  Either that, or their heads might just have exploded. 

So, here’s a big thank you to the lone Dominican who decided to stroll through campus in your habit praying your Rosary for these ungrateful brats.  Here’s a thank you also to the students who didn’t cave to the trauma of seeing someone in a white robe and took just a second to use some common sense.  Don’t stop being you.  Hopefully you guys will serve as a great example to those neurotic people who see hate everywhere.  Here’s also hoping that you can be the ones to stop the next – what one student brilliantly called it – fear culture fail.




Häagen-Dazs is Bad for You!

 Outstanding, Bishop Doerfler!  From a mom whose house and church have always been filled with chant and polyphony, thank you so very much! 

I’m sure there will be a lot of wailing and gnashing of teeth at this line:

b. Effective immediately, no other hymnal may be purchased.

I think I just might have cried tears of joy at that one.  No more Häagen-Dazs (our pet name for Marty Haugen and David Haas)???  What will the people do?  How will they worship?!? Oh, I know, maybe they’ll actually learn the Catholic hymns and chant that sustained the saints!  Woot!

Now, to those who will cry, “Our kids are just not going to get this!” or “Latin? It’s a dead language!”, nobody will ever accuse me of being a linguist.  Heck, forget Latin, I slaughter the English language on a daily basis, which is really, really bad for a homeschooling mom.  Guess what?  My kids learned Latin just fine.  Not only did they learn it, they learned what it meant.  They learned the history behind it.  They learned what most people in my Gen X generation did not – why it’s important.   Surprisingly, they weren’t scarred for life (or at least not for that reason).  Yes, parents!  They can be taught to eat big people food.

So, how did we do this, you may ask?  We started them young, which, I’m happy to see, is part of Bishop Doerfler’s plan.  It’s a perfect time to learn music and a language.  Sadly, I did not and am a complete failure at both. I’ve had to work at it a bit more than my kids.  But, sorry, people, it’s still not that hard.  There are reasons there are memes like this:

et cum spiritu tuo

The music is what helped me memorize the Latin, and from there, the translation just wasn’t that hard.  I can now translate a lot of the non-sung stuff without using the cheat sheet found on the opposite page of the missal.  Why am I telling you just how unlearned I am?  Because I’m the perfect of example of, “If I can do it, anyone can!”  My kids, well, they’ve surpassed me by a mile.

What’s going to happen with the poor children who can’t sing Barney songs in Mass? I’m betting some really awesome children’s choirs will pop up.  This will please a lot of people except the ones who have mini-Whitney Houstons who won’t get the rippin’ solos anymore.  For most parents, you’re in for some serious beauty from your kids!  The bishop is focusing on chant here, but I can tell you polyphony is not far behind.  When you hear the amazing things that can come out of some, say, nine to fourteen year olds singing in parts, you will be brought to tears.  When you see how heavenly the Mass can be accompanied by such kids, you will realize that it’s not really about them (although you can still be super proud they’ve just helped to raise the level of worship).

So, parents, before any of you start chastising the bishop for this one, realize he has a reason for doing this and it’s to help all of his flock.  You will survive the trauma of not hearing Häagen-Dazs at Mass.  Soon, you won’t even know it’s missing.  You’ll be hearing the music of the saints.  Try to look at this as a privilege (I can tell you many around the country are jealous).  Encourage, help, donate to this effort. You will be amazed at what your kids will show you about the Faith.

I hope and I pray that more bishops will follow suit.  Music is a powerful thing!