The 9 Stages of Irrelevance

If you haven’t figured it out, there are many in the Church hierarchy who are hoping you completely lost your memory of the last few decades, let alone 2018. It’s like they hope we’ll totally forget what’s been going on if they just keep telling us to just wait a little longer on that reform they promised us. Sometimes I think it’s because they don’t have children (well, none that we know about) and don’t understand that, when parents are trying to protect their children, our memories are pretty hard to erase.

I know many of you are going to tell me that the abuse has been going on for decades longer, and I don’t disagree, but really, 2002 was the biggest coordinated media-focused effort where we were told that the Church would move hell and high water to make sure the abuse stopped. Meh, not so much.

2018? That was the year the mainstream media, law enforcement, and legal organizations decided that they were no longer going to ignore what was going on. For some, it was just too good of a story. Heck, even Hollywood decided not to ignore it. For others, it was a payday for their law firm. I’m going to assume law enforcement just wanted to protect and serve. Those of us faithful Catholics who have been diligently saying “It’s still happening!” finally had allies, albeit strange allies. The enemy of my enemy and all.

Let’s start with early 2018. In February, news broke that the Vatican, from the Pope on down, had ignored the abuse of children at a deaf school. Then came the scandal in Chile where the Pope actually said that those accusing the bishop there were spreading calumny. Then in America the McCarrick abuse came to media light (although soooooo many knew long before it hit the mainstream media, including the Vatican). Then there was the scandal in the Honduran seminary which was attempting to be turned into a gay brothel. Geez. (The head of that archdiocese is Cardinal Maradiaga – papal buddy and appointee to the C9). Oh, and Cardinal Maradiaga was also investigated in 2017 and accused of financial mismanagement by the papal envoy. Let’s see, where is he now? Still working at the Vatican. He also accused the 50 Honduran seminarians as “gossipers.” And then came all the grand juries and investigations in other countries, such as Germany. And let’s not forget Archbishop Vigano.

The pattern that emerged last year was

1) accusation

2) denial

3) blame the accusers,

4) “Oh! Uh, yeah. It happened. We just didn’t know!” (even though everyone knew), 5) “Oh, we’ll fix what we said was already fixed!” 

6) “The laity must get involved!”

7) “We’re going to ignore the laity!”

8) “You can’t do anything, we’re working on it!”, “Still working!” and finally

9) “It’s the laity’s fault and definitely, definitely, definitely not a problem with homosexual priests!”

Seriously, it’s a looonnnggg pattern, but one played out just like that in the U.S. Let me refresh your memory:

1) Victims quite clearly made accusations about McCarrick and to the police departments around the country for quite a while.

2) The McCarrick situation was totally ignored, and he was even given nice little awards here and there. While some dioceses took accusations seriously, some quite evidently ignored them. Again, McCarrick was a perfect example.

3) I think Archbishop Vigano is a perfect example of what happens when you step out of line and shed some light on the reality of the situation.

4) Cardinal Tobin is the perfect person cast in the “We knew nothing!” role. The guy lived with one of the biggest perpetrators, but yeah, he didn’t see a thing, along with Cardinal Cupich, Bishop McElroy, Cardinal Mahony, Cardinal Dolan, Cardinal Wuerl, etc., etc., etc.

5) The Vatican said they’d fix the problem in February. The USCCB tried to actually give it a go in October but were cut off at the knees by Cardinals Wuerl and Cupich thanks to the Vatican. The Vatican said “No trying to do anything until we have our grand meeting in February,” which then only became a meeting on half of the abuse problem (minors) and totally ignored the other half. They also haven’t uttered a peep on the USCCB’s proposals which they said would be dealt with. What were those? How to police the authority (bishops) and…

6 & 7) setting up lay oversight. Remember? That idea has been floated since 2002 but has never happened with any degree of credibility. Lay women have quit the Vatican “Papal Commission on the Protection of Minors” organization because nobody was listening, AND have we heard about that in any concrete terms at the “Meeting on the Protection of Minors?” Again, let’s not forget the USCCB was going to vote on a lay oversight committee until that was forbidden by the Vatican.

8) This laughable “Meeting on the Protection of Minors” kicked the can down the road even before they started downplaying all expectations that they would be able to do anything (not that we expected anything). We’ve ignored a HUGE chunk of the problem for decades! Why start now?

9) We are told that by liberal mouthpiece Massimo Faggioli, as seen here, that it’s all our fault due to “clericalism”. You, ladies and gentlemen, all need to apologize for the abuse crisis. You treated your priests with a little too much trust and reverence. And believe me, Massimo is not the only one to try and float this idea, just the latest.

https://onemadmomblog.wordpress.com/2018/09/04/martins-twitter-manifesto/
Ninth, clericalism must die. The system that privileges the word and status of bishops and priests over those of lay people (and parents); that insists on an exaggerated deference for clergy and bishops, and that has functioned as a closed world, must be dismantled.

 

https://onemadmomblog.wordpress.com/2018/09/27/its-your-fault-laity/
So, what is clericalism? Clericalism is an exaggeration of the role of the clergy to the detriment of the laity. In a culture of clericalism, clerics are put on a pedestal and the laity are overly deferential and submissive to them. Pope Francis notes that clericalism is not only fostered by priests, but also reinforced by lay people.

Just what is clericalism in the mind of Bishop Zinkula?

Perhaps a few examples of clericalism would be of assistance:

Coddling seminarians and telling them how special they are.

Insisting that priests or deacons go to the front of the line at meals and wakes because they are more important and busier than everyone else.

People telling me, when I am pondering an issue, “Whatever you want, Bishop.”

It all comes down to your fault, people, no matter how you slice it. If you show respect for your local priest, seminarian, or bishop, you might as well have abused the victims yourself. If you call out the abusive clergy, you are “The Great Accuser.” Just face it, fellow faithful, this “Meeting on the Protection of Minors & Blatant Ignoring of the Rest of the Victims” is going to give the Church ZERO help in fixing the problem. It’s all on you, and it’s definitely not going to be done by the national bishops’ conferences or the Vatican at this point. They have produced NOTHING that hasn’t already been chatted about before at the endless conferences and summits. This was a dog and pony show, but they seemed to forget that they should bring dogs and ponies. But it’s not about homosexuality. Sure. Not. At. All. In. The. Least.

So how is this going to get fixed now? This is going to be done bishop by bishop, diocese by diocese, and some of the good guys are going to be completely skewered for it. Hopefully, the good leaders will start to realize that “sly as the serpent, gentle as the dove” is going to have to be the new method of operation, and I’m hoping they will start some sort of coalition to protect the faithful. The American bishops had to sit on their hands for four months waiting for some scraps of food to be tossed their way. Apparently the master forgot about them. What are they going to do now? Their March meeting is coming fast. Are they just going to ignore the fact they were told to wait for instructions that never came? Or are they going to demand that the supposed canonical questions are ironed out and they can implement their ideas?

Think about it. The Church hasn’t even come up with a plan to stop one of the most heinous things going on in the world today. It’s not simply that they’ve failed to implement a plan. It’s that they don’t have one. I’m quite sure that some bishops and cardinals don’t want anyone to police them. Clearly that was the reason Cardinals Cupich, Wuerl, and their ilk worked so hard to make sure that didn’t happen and will continue to do so.

BTW, I’d like to thank the reporters who have heard the laity loud and clear when we asked repeatedly when homosexuality’s role in the abuse crisis would be dealt with. I hope they keep hammering them on this. The hierarchy will continually try to reframe the answer to a question not asked. The question isn’t “Did homosexuality make them do it?” The question is “What are we going to do with the knowledge that the overwhelming number of these cases involved homosexual activities by priests?” The answer is obvious to anyone who actually wants to stop abuse.

 

Buckle Up, Fellow Catholics!

Thanks to those who told me they couldn’t wait to hear my thoughts on the youth synod.  There’s probably been enough said, and I’m quite sure I’ve mentioned how I sometimes get lost when there’s too much material (and it is never-ending) but I feel like I’ve let you down, so let me sum it up for you:

giphy
(via GIPHY)

You have to admit that Rome has become a bit of a dumpster fire as of late. Not sure we can expect much more than that in the near future. If Cardinal Sarah declines the commenting job, what can I hope to achieve?

This article, however, did catch my eye. As we go over it, I will definitely draw your attention to something that I’ve been predicting.

http://eponymousflower.blogspot.com/2018/10/can-coccopalmerio-remain-cardinal.html

Friday, October 12, 2018

Can Coccopalmerio Remain a Cardinal Another Day?

Sadly, in this pontificate, the answer is “Yes, he can.” In fact, he can remain so for many, many, pathetically sad more days.

(Rome) Cardinal Coccopalmerio is already the second close confidante of Pope Francis to make revelations about a degenerate double life. At noon today, the Vatican announced another sensational move in connection with the McCarrick case and the Pennsylvania report: Cardinal Donald Wuerl was retired as Archbishop of Washington.

I’m not sure I’d call it sensational. They were always prepared to throw Cardinal Wuerl under the bus if they had to. What should have been done weeks ago was finally done after many other efforts failed to distract us from Cardinal Wuerl. It was simply a “live to fight another day” move, a bone to the faithful who didn’t quietly go away.

What’s wrong with this pontificate?

Well, for starters, it seems like many in Rome think they are made of Teflon. Only now, their proverbial eggs are starting to stick to the pan and they can’t figure it out. For years they’ve gotten away with it. They’re completely in denial about how this is going to go from now on.

The events come thick and fast. At the end of July, Cardinal Theodore McCarrick was forced to renounce his cardinal status because he had led a degenerate double life abusing his position and engaging in inhumane sexual contact with subordinate priests and seminarians. It was the first denial of this kind in Church history.

Not fast enough. I mean, that was three months ago, and Cardinal McCarrick was just drop shipped to a cozy monastery. When’s the canonical trial going to commence???

Since then, his successor as Archbishop of Washington, Cardinal Donald Wuerl, has been in the crossfire. Wuerl was accused of knowing McCarrick’s misconduct and covering it. Pope Francis had to drop his friend McCarrick, but tried to hold on to Wuerl. However, a few weeks ago it was speculated that Francis might also drop Wuerl to rescue at least one other McCarrick protégé, Cardinal Kevin Farrell. Farrell had been called to Rome by Francis, allegedly on McCarrick’s recommendation, and made Prefect of the new Dicastery for Lay, Family, and Life, and made cardinal. Farrell lived with McCarrick in the same house for several years, but the Pope does not want to hear about his homosexual double life. Not everyone believes that.

Oh, yeah, Cardinal Wuerl was hardly the worst of the worst. He was just the one closest to retirement caught up in this debacle and the easiest one to whack. The were totally covering Cardinal Farrell’s behind. So, what we have to do now is to keep voicing our outrage about him. No way you live with a notorious dude like Cardinal McCarrick and don’t know. Again, as Bishop Lopes said, EVERYONE knew McCarrick was a dog.

Two days ago, the next scandal burst already. LifeSiteNews lit the bomb Coccopalmerio, another pope confidant. Cardinal Coccopalmerio was President of the Pontifical Council for Legislative Texts until last April. After the revelations, the US news portal Church Militant wrote:

“True. We have our own well-placed sources in Rome, which confirmed it to us weeks ago. Cardinal Coccopalmerio was present at the gay drug orgy by his secretary. Capozzi got busted. Coccopalmerio got off scot-free. Now he advises the Pope on sanctions against Viganò.”

Does anyone really have trouble believing this anymore? At best, Cardinal Coccopalmerio knew about Msgr. Capozzi and was still trying to get him made bishop.  At worst, he was partying right along with him. Personally, I find the latter more believable. The guy is just creepy.

On August 26, Archbishop Carlo Maria Viganò, the former nuncio in the United States, had sounded with a dossier with which he made serious accusations against Pope Francis and demanded his resignation. He accuses the ruling Pope of having known about the “perverse and diabolical” homosexual double life of Cardinal Theodore McCarrick since June 2013, but did nothing. Rather, Francis made the scandal cardinal into his personal confidant for the United States.

Cardinal Ouellet pretty much stated that the Holy Father knew but just didn’t care enough about an old dude who was about to retire. That might have been believable a while ago, but Pope Francis asked Archbishop Vigano about Cardinal McCarrick AND got Cardinal McCarrick involved with the China mess. If the Holy Father just couldn’t be bothered with an old guy about to retire, he sure gave him an important assignment.

In his dossier Viganò listed numerous names, which he assigned as working in the Vatican “gay lobby”. It was only with the help of this gay lobby that it had been possible to cover up McCarrick’s machinations and to keep his personnel file clean.

If only Archbishop Vigano were the first to do so. Look at those names. They have been implicated time and time again.

Coccopalmerio is examining how Archbishop Viganò could be punished.

And here is the part to pay particular attention to. It backs up some of my worst theories about what could happen. Let me say this, if Rome is smart, they will leave Archbishop Vigano alone and simply act as if he never existed. My feeling, however, is they are going to try to pin him with schism. Yes, it would be ludicrous, but after reading Cardinal Ouellet’s letter, that is a BIG concern of mine.

Read here for context, but here are the super troubling parts (emphasis mine):

Is not communion with the Successor of Peter an expression of our obedience to Christ who chose him and sustains him with his grace?

I think it is abhorrent, however, for you to use the clamorous sexual abuse scandal in the United States to inflict an unmerited and unheard of a blow to the moral authority of your superior, the Supreme Pontiff.

Dear brother, how much I wish that I could help you return to communion with him who is the visible guarantor of communion in the Catholic Church.

but you should not finish your priestly life involved in an open and scandalous rebellion that inflicts a very painful wound to the Bride of Christ,

and come back to better feelings towards the Holy Father

that profoundly harms the communion of the Church.

This letter was the shot across the bow. I also think Cardinal Ouellet was dispatched to test the waters on how far they could sanction Archbishop Vigano before they lose more favor. So, boys and girls, I think it’s time that you read all about what “schism” is. I don’t think it’s going to be too long before you hear it, even though it would be a really, really bad move and would be completely divisive to the Church at large. We’re not talking Lefebvre level event. We’re talking about giant meteor impact type event. Long version:  http://www.newadvent.org/cathen/13529a.htm Short version: http://www.vatican.va/archive/ENG1104/_P2H.HTM

Can. 751 Heresy is the obstinate denial or obstinate doubt after the reception of baptism of some truth which is to be believed by divine and Catholic faith; apostasy is the total repudiation of the Christian faith; schism is the refusal of submission to the Supreme Pontiff or of communion with the members of the Church subject to him.

There was no declaration of refusal of submission to the Holy Father by Archbishop Vigano. In fact, Vigano asked the Holy Father to do what only the Holy Father can do. I actually think Archbishop Vigano dropped his testimony and went into hiding to prevent an all-out rupture in the Church. From what I understand, there are some canonical reasons they need to find and essentially serve him. Until then, nobody has to make any judgment calls as to who is cast as Athanasius in this little play. It also gives the searchers for truth time to uncover things that move this all along to an ending. What that might be, I know not!

On 5 September, the Roman historian Roberto de Mattei warned that Pope Francis would not clean up after the revelations, but let heavy sanctions against Archbishop Viganò be tested. De Mattei asked, “Will Archbishop Viganò be punished for telling the truth?”

De Mattei wrote:

Pope Francis is examining this possibility. If true, as confirmed by several sources, he has consulted Cardinal Francesco Coccopalmerio and several other Church lawyers to study possible canonical sanctions to be imposed on the Archbishop beginning with the suspension of a divinis.

Geez! They might want to do some polling. Like I said, this isn’t one order they’re contending with. There is an overwhelming number of the faithful who are ticked off beyond belief, and there are more people paying attention now than ever before.  Sending Cardinal Ouellet out there to say, “I can only surmise that some of those prelates are not of your preference or the preference of your friends who support your interpretation of matters,” shows a complete lack of understanding of how offended the laity is over the abuse scandals. He might as well have said, “I’m going to get you, my pretty, and your little dog, too!” while ignoring the fact there’s a bazillion Tin Men, Cowardly Lions, and Scarecrows out there. And, while they like to repeatedly point to McCarrick as the lone bad guy, they might also want to look at the crazy amount of grand jury investigations. So, just what do you think is going to happen if they suspend Vigano a divinis? Honestly, it will be ugly.

If this news were correct, it would be extremely grave and a bit surreal, especially as the ‘expert’ called to punish Msgr. Viganò would have been Cardinal Coccopalmerio, who was accused by the former nuncio of being a part of the United States “gay lobby” that is at work in the Vatican.

It should not be forgotten that the Cardinal’s secretary, Msgr. Luigi Capozzi, is involved in a case of homosexuality, in which the position of his superior has yet to be clarified. The real problem is of course another. The Catholic Church as a visible society has a criminal law because it has the right to punish the faithful who have violated their laws.

This is one of the reasons I hope Archbishop Vigano remains in hiding until a bit of house cleaning can be done.

On October 10, the Canadian press agency LifeSiteNews revealed that in the “case of homosexuality” not only the secretary Capozzi, but Cardinal Coccopalmerio was personally involved.

It wouldn’t surprise me in the least. Can’t confirm or deny, but I hope some of the law enforcement called in grow a conscience and spill, if this indeed happened.

“Silence is not a solution”

Famous Spanish columnist Francisco Fernandez de la Cigoña today indignantly raised the question:

“Can Coccopalmerio stay cardinal for another day?”

The revelations are either “compellingly denied, or a drug addict and practicing homosexual can no longer be Cardinal.”

One would hope. One would hope.

The Catholic publicist went even harder into court:

“Silence, which suddenly now seems to be pleasing to this pope, whose pontificate has so far been conspicuous, does not solve anything and does not give Francis much time when others of his charges are involved in even greater scandals and disgraceful impudence.

Above all, it would be painful if the pope, whose sympathies were obviously in many respects with the wrong persons, would distrust even the decent ones now.

I think it even goes beyond that. Seriously, it would be nice if he put his own house in order before dealing with Archbishop Vigano. Who’s a greater threat to the Church right now? Is it those who may have engaged in drug fueled homosexual orgies, or Archbishop Vigano??? Can we deal with the worst of the worst first?

This afternoon, Cardinal Wuerl announced his retirement as Archbishop of Washington. He still remains cardinal and can thus participate in an upcoming conclave. However, the pontificate of Pope Francis loses important supports. McCarrick and Wuerl controlled another McCarrick pupil, Bishop Michael Brandsfield, a million-dollar foundation in the US that can be described as this Pope’s “private account”.

And a whole new scandal. Honestly, I’m losing track of them. I’m not even that upset that Wuerl is still a voting cardinal. If I were him, I’d figure out quickly that I was a serious scapegoat for even worse people and vote the polar opposite of the way they would like.

Of the three, only Wuerl is left. McCarrick lost his dominating position with his cardinal dignity, his protégé, who was president of the foundation, had to be retired by Francis in mid-September. He was accused of sexual abuse in the Pennsylvania Report.

Oh, replacements just as bad will probably be appointed unless we pray for some serious divine intervention.

At the moment, some things are falling apart, and that could even be the pontificate of Pope Francis.

I have no idea of what’s going on in his head, but I’m sure his “advisors” are wickedly bad at their jobs. Or maybe they are just wicked. Either way, I’m also reasonably sure they’re just watching out for themselves. Archbishop Vigano could have been his best “employee” had he just listened. He was probably once far more on the Holy Father’s side than any of the people surrounding him now.

Buckle up, my fellow Catholics! I’m afraid the ride is about to get bumpier. Remember, we can and must still pray like crazy for a little help down here.

Tripling-down on Accusing Greatly!

After Pope Francis tripled-down on his “Great Accuser” homilies, I finally got around to reading them for myself, and yep, they were as sad as reported.  I never want to take reporting at face value without going to the source.  I hate to say it, but after reading them, I get the feeling that Pope Francis thinks we are naïve, or maybe he’s just naïve himself.  Either way, he picked the wrong bible verses to latch onto.  Personally, I think it always a bad PR move to put yourself in the role of Jesus, Job, etc.

It also seems to me that Pope Francis also did what he was preaching to everyone else not to do.  In our Church, an accusation doesn’t get any bigger than accusing someone of acting like satan. Not one, not two, but three “shoot the messenger” homilies have been lauded by a whole lot of people who have been quite legitimately outed for the clericalism of their compadres who want to normalize same-sex attraction.

So no, Holy Father, I don’t think this is a Job situation at all, or at least you have GREATLY miscast the characters.  I think it’s more like a Paul and Timothy situation. I just can’t believe God nor Job would want the evil deeds of others hidden.  Do you?  Let’s look at Job.  :

Job 1:6-20

One day, when the heavenly powers stood waiting upon the Lord’s presence, and among them, man’s Enemy, the Lord asked him, where he had been? Roaming about the earth, said he, to and fro about the earth.  Why then, the Lord said, thou hast seen a servant of mine called Job. Here is a true man, an honest man, none like him on earth; ever he fears his God, and keeps far from wrong-doing. Job fears his God, the Enemy answered, and loses nothing by it. Sheltered his life by thy protection, sheltered his home, his property; thy blessing on all he undertakes; worldly goods that still go on increasing; he loses nothing. One little touch of thy hand, assailing all that wealth of his! Then see how he will turn and blaspheme thee. Be it so, the Lord answered; with all his possessions do what thou wilt, so thou leave himself unharmed. 

So here we’ve got satan telling God that Job only follows Him because he hasn’t faced any hardship.  Yeah, that has everything to do with Archbishop Vigano.  Sorry.  If Archbishop Vigano didn’t rock the boat, he’s probably be leading a pretty cushy life right now. So the character assassination is way off base here. Talk about hardship, he’s in hiding.

Now let’s look at 1 Timothy.  This one sounds a bit more familiar and applicable to the situation. Maybe it should be adopted by anyone who feels the least bit bad that THOUSANDS of people have been molested and raped at the hands of priests.  The “worrying about my image” homilies really need to cease. My comments interjected:

 

1 Timothy 1:3-20

There were some who needed to be warned against teaching strange doctrines (Sounds quite familiar these days!), against occupying their minds with legends and interminable pedigrees (Some are definitely legends in their own mind, like the ones who end in SJ), which breed controversy, instead of building up God’s house, as the faith does. (Breeding controversy is exactly what the likes of Cardinals Wuerl, Tobin, and Cupich, Bishop McElroy, and Frs. Martin, Rosica, and Reese do.) The end at which our warning aims is charity, based on purity of heart, on a good conscience and a sincere faith. (What?  Paul and Timothy aren’t the “Great Accusers” but there warning is aimed in charity, purity of heart, good conscience, and sincere faith?  Somebody else tell me they see the likeness to Vigano, not Cupich!) There are some who have missed this mark, branching off into vain speculations; who now claim to be expounding the law, without understanding the meaning of their own words, or the subject on which they pronounce so positively. (Do we not see that at EVERY turn with Cupich, Tobin, Kasper, Martin, Reese, Rosica, and a multitude of others???)  The law? It is an excellent thing, where it is applied legitimately; (Yes, the Pontifical Secrets have their place but, as Archbishop Vigano points out, they were never meant to cover up for abusing priests, bishops, and cardinals!!!) but it must be remembered that the law is not meant for those who live innocent lives. It is meant for the lawless and the refractory; (Hmmm. Lawless and stubborn.  That would appear to those charged in Archbishop Vigano’s testimony.) for the godless and the sinner, the unholy and the profane; for those who lay violent hands on father or mother, for murderers, for those who commit fornication or sin against nature, the slave-dealer, the liar, the perjurer. All this and much else is the very opposite of the sound doctrine (and which faction has been trying to promote same-sex attraction as normal and healthy?) contained in the gospel I have been entrusted with, that tells us of the blessed God and his glory. How I thank our Lord Christ Jesus, the source of all my strength, for shewing confidence in me by appointing me his minister, me, a blasphemer till then, a persecutor, a man of violence, author of outrage, and yet he had mercy on me, because I was acting in the ignorance of unbelief. The grace of the Lord came upon me in a full tide of faith and love, the love that is in Christ Jesus. How true is that saying, and what a welcome it deserves, that Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners. I was the worst of all, and yet I was pardoned, so that in me first of all Christ Jesus might give the extreme example of his patience; I was to be the pattern of all those who will ever believe in him, to win eternal life. Honour and glory through endless ages to the king of all the ages, the immortal, the invisible, who alone is God, Amen. This charge, then, I give into thy hands, my son Timothy, remembering how prophecy singled thee out, long ago. Serve, as it bade thee, in this honourable warfare, (And this is one of the reasons the charge of “civil war” doesn’t faze me. This is indeed a spiritual war for souls.) with faith and a good conscience to aid thee. Some, through refusing this duty, have made shipwreck of the faith; (Oh, yes, some definitely have done so.) among them, Hymenaeus and Alexander,(and Cupich, McElroy, Farrell, Wuerl, Kasper, etc., etc., etc.) whom I have made over to Satan, till they are cured of their blasphemy. (No accusing there!)

So, you can see between the two verses, there are valid accusations by St. Paul (I mean he even named names) and a supposition by satan.  Why Pope Francis even tries to go there is beyond me.  It’s like somebody whipped out a concordance and just looked up “accusations” then said, “Hey! There’s a verse that says satan is an accuser. Let’s go with that against Archbishop Vigano!”, but they never bothered to actually read the rest of the verse. To make matters worse, they then repeated it and will likely continue to do so.  I’m not sure that betting the laity will take anything on face-value is the way to go these days anymore.  Google makes it so easy to fact check these days, and people have messaged me saying “I was researching this scandal and came across you!”  People are fact checking, as depressing as it is.

That said, there is exposing truth and there is promoting lies.  These are obviously quite different. God is the author of Truth, and satan is the author of lies.  To say that putting forth truth comes from the devil sounds like something an abuser would say, don’t you think?  Fr. Rutler said it best in his interview with Raymond Arroyo:

https://youtu.be/ard3AOk9Bn0?t=646

Well, I’m a parish priest I am in no position to fault or correct the Pope who is the Vicar of Christ. I can only express what moral theologians would call admiration, that is astonishment, at attributing to the Pope, uh, repudiating to the Pope, imputing to the devil, an exposure of the truth. Now, I, the devil is the Prince of Lies the last thing he wants to do is to expose the truth so if the truth is being exposed. that is not the devil’s work. That is the Holy Spirit.

This is how most of us feel, especially the victims of abuse. We are utterly amazed that those exposing truth are being compared to satan, especially when the accusations have been corroborated time and again. Satan is the author of lies and tries to suppress the truth. His accusations are false and misleading.

Maybe the Vatican sound-bite creators might want to do some pondering on this verse:

Romans 1:18

For the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men who suppress the truth in unrighteousness

And for heaven’s sake, can somebody in the PR department at the Vatican, at the very least, let the Holy Father know that the “I’m silent like Christ.” isn’t going over well here?

The Crux of Vigano

****See update at the end.****

So, when I wrote my last post, I already knew about the attacks on Archbishop Vigano.  I didn’t address them at that time, though, because I get really annoyed when I draw attention to National catholic Reporter and their ridiculous propagandizing under the guise of “reporting.”  Now, however, it’s crossed over to Crux, although it’s wrapped in John Allen’s usual school of nice.  He just tries too hard to see both sides as if there’s no agenda there, either.  He can’t call a spade a spade when this Pope has fulfilled all his hopes and dreams on the economy, war, poverty, and the death penalty.

Here’s the part where I’m going to launch into my Archbishop Carlo Maria Vigano apologist persona and point out how weird it is that the Pope who touts honesty and transparency in giving interviews on planes told the reporters to basically go suck lemons.

Making sense of McCarrick cover-up charges against Pope Francis

John L. Allen Jr.Aug 27, 2018 EDITOR

Yes, let’s use a little common sense, not hopes and dreams.  Let’s just look at the reality of the situation.

DUBLIN – As Pope Francis wrapped up a 32-hour visit to Ireland on Sunday, the cold, windy and rainy weather undoubtedly put a damper on turnout. Officials had expected around a half-million people to flock to Dublin’s Phoenix Park for the concluding Mass, for instance, but in the end the Vatican said 300,000 people turned out.

Ireland has been hit hard by clergy abuse, but yeah, it’s the weather. Do I know why people didn’t show?  Of course not, but neither does John Allen, and that’s pretty much how this whole article goes.  Let’s show an event and provide some correlation and causation that may or may not exist. The problem here is that it becomes a character assassination piece on Archbishop Vigano – but done in a nice way.  Sigh.

Let me state this at the outset, and I just ran across a piece from Rod Dreher that pretty much says the same thing – Archbishop Vigano’s motives for doing what he did DON’T MATTER ONE BIT.  He made claims that the Pope can either confirm or deny, so how about we see that happen???  Honestly, I like Vigano and I always have.  He was crucial in some amazing episcopal appointments and did his best to try to save this nation. He’s a staunch supporter of traditional marriage and he’s against admitting homosexuals into seminary.  Is he bitter about being appointed to this miserable country (Catholic wise, that is)? Does he have an axe to grind or is he thinking of the countless victims of McCarrick and club? Don’t know, don’t care.  I only care about the facts laid out while using a little common sense on the allegations against him.

Yet as it turns out, the meteorological storms Francis faced paled in comparison to the metaphorical ones breaking on Sunday, in part related to his overall handling of the clerical sexual abuse crisis, but more specifically to an astonishing claim by a former papal ambassador in the U.S. that Francis had lifted restrictions imposed on Cardinal Theodore McCarrick under Pope emeritus Benedict XVI, despite being informed of misconduct concerns against McCarrick in June 2013.

Yes, the bad does pale in comparison to thousands of lives altered by this abuse scandal.  The claim by Vigano wasn’t astonishing.  That’s what’s so terribly sad about it.  The only thing that was astonishing is that someone broke through the cone of silence.

Aboard the papal plane on Sunday, Francis basically challenged reporters to judge those accusations for themselves – the clear suggestion being that if they did so, the charges would crumble under their own weight.

Oh, yeah, he sure challenged them.  He didn’t take the 5th at all.  Sigh.  What happened to his reasoning for never formulating answers ahead of time?  What happened to the transparency and authenticity which supposedly come from his interviews on a plane?

Assuming journalists take the pontiff up on his offer, so far we have only the word of that former ambassador, Italian Archbishop Carlo Maria Viganò, that he personally informed Francis on June 23, 2013, of the sanctions imposed on McCarrick by Benedict.

Over and over again on Sunday, I was pressed by colleagues and ordinary folk alike for an answer to one burning question: “How seriously should we take this?”

Here’s my bottom line response: Take it seriously, but with a large grain of salt.

But, pray-tell, why, John?  This was a very public accusation with dates and names included, and the only response has been “No comment.”  Who is more suspect at this point?  Sure, Archbishop Vigano could be flipping insane, but he’d have to be to put out something like this simply because of sour grapes.  This isn’t a simple “The Pope knew” statement.  This one puts it all on the line.  Also, who has a lengthier track record of abuses being brought to light and ignored.  ***cough***Honduras***cough***

One certainly can’t dismiss the charge out of hand, if for no other reason than never before has a former papal ambassador accused a sitting pope of complicity in what would amount, if true, to a criminal cover-up.

I’m not sure it could actually be considered criminal since it was the over-18 crowd and no charges have been brought yet.  If it was true, it really would be far more than a cover-up.  It would be allowing a dirty old man to wander free in the Church after sanctions had been placed on him by prior Pope.

To be clear, this isn’t some anonymous figure claiming to have sent the pope a letter. Viganò was the pope’s man in America for five years, and over that time he certainly had the means and opportunity to inform the pope of things if he wanted to.

Right.

Further, there’s a symbolic dimension to the situation. Francis has been charged with mishandling an abuse allegation, and if there isn’t a credible and transparent effort to get to the bottom of things, then the pontiff’s rhetoric in Ireland about being “firm and decisive in the pursuit of truth and justice” might ring hollow.

Right, again, especially after his fumbling of other large-scale abuse issues.

On the other hand, there are at least four reasons why a large grain of salt is warranted.

And here comes all of the stuff that doesn’t change the fact a list of charges have been laid out to confirm or deny.

To begin with, the 11-page statement Viganò released to reporters probably undercut his own credibility in key respects. The letter contains charges of some form of wrongdoing or questionable behavior against no fewer than 32 senior churchmen, and in most cases Viagnò himself acknowledges that his comments are based on no more than supposition and/or connecting the dots.

Uh, OK.  That’s a sweeping generalization.  If you had gone for “some of his comments”, you might have been close, John. Let’s go down the list, shall we?

Bertone is known for putting homosexuals in positions of authority.  Not supposition.

McCarrick admitted he had shared his bed with seminarians.  Not supposition.

Sodano was given all the McCarrick info.  Not supposition.

Sodano tried to cover up the Maciel case.  Not supposition.

Sodano responsible for putting McCarrick into power. Finally, a supposition and a good one at that.  Makes total sense, though.

Cardinal Re wanted nothing to do with McCarrick.  Not supposition.

Sambi gave Bertone the file.  Not supposition.

Montalvo sent a report to Bertone.  Not supposition.

Sodano sent out a press release saying Maciel case was closed.  Pope Benedict smacked that idea down.  Not supposition.

Bertone didn’t quibble over Vincenzo de Mauro (another one everyone knew was an active homosexual).  I guess you could say supposition, but do we hear any quibbling?

Cardinal Francesco Coccopalmerio and Archbishop Vincenzo Paglia subvert Catholic teaching on homosexuality.  I guess you’d throw that under supposition.  But, really?!

Cardinals Edwin Frederick O’Brien and Renato Raffaele Martino?  Don’t know them, so I’ll give John one point for supposition.

Cardinal Wuerl?  Not sure how anyone could think John is this ignorant at this point.  Supposition based on a mound of evidence that he knew a whole lot more than he’s saying.

When anyone hurls around accusations quite so lightly, it’s difficult to know how seriously any one ought to be taken.

Bishop Paul Bootkoski and Archbishop John Myers?  They made payouts, for heaven’s sake.

Farrell?  Supposition, but a very logical supposition.  That said, he’s kind of one of the lackeys, so who knows.

Cardinal O’Malley?  Dude!  This was his job.  He either was completely incompetent or he knew big time.

Second, Viganò has a history.

Now onto John’s suppositions.

He was a key player in the “Vatileaks” scandal under Pope emeritus Benedict XVI, which pivoted on confidential documents being stolen and leaked to the press by a papal butler. Among them were two letters by Viganò to Benedict and Cardinal Tarcisio Bertone, the Vatican’s then-Secretary of State, protesting his impending appointment as ambassador in the U.S. on the grounds that he wanted to remain in the Government of the Vatican City State and continue battling financial corruption.

I love how you’re a key player in “Vatileaks” when your stuff was found and leaked.

Then as now, the letters contained a mix of factual detail with innuendo and conspiracy theories, and it proved arduous – in some cases, basically impossible – to separate the wheat from the chaff.

As conspiratorial as the current testimony, John?  Says you.

Third, Viganò arguably undercut his credibility by not dealing with his own record on the abuse issue.

And here’s the only place they might have game, although I think witch hunt.

According to a 2014 memo, first made public in 2016, Viganò as nuncio quashed an investigation – going as far as demanding that evidence be destroyed – into then-Archbishop John Nienstedt of St. Paul and Minneapolis, who was being investigated for misconduct with seminarians as well as cover-up of sexual abuse. In 2015, Nienstedt stepped down as head of the archdiocese.

By not at least trying to explain his actions in the Nienstedt case, Viganò left open some serious question marks

So if you’ve got some serious question marks for him, what punctuation are you tallying for the Holy Father at this point?

Let’s go over a bit of a timeline here.  Nienstedt was accused of inappropriately touching a teen during a post-confirmation photo shoot in December of 2014.  It was investigated by police, and in March of 2014 they said, after an intensive investigation, that no charges were warranted. Archbishop Vigano then met with Nienstedt in April. All other allegations against Nienstedt were decades earlier and seemingly he said/he said statements.  Oddly enough, they all magically appeared after the battle over “gay referendums” started in Minnesota.  So, in quite good conscience, Vigano likely concluded that the police found nothing in the case of the confirmand and that this was likely an attack launched by proponents of “gay marriage.”  Right or wrong, Vigano looking the other way was hardly as habitual as, say, the Holy Father.

As far as Nienstedt goes, I think he did indeed blow it not removing some priests and he resigned.

Fourth, it may be difficult for many observers to escape the impression that all this was orchestrated with a political agenda in mind.

In the statement on McCarrick, Viganò clearly betrays a generally conservative political bias, among other things in his frequently derisive commentary on prelates and clerics he finds to be excessively “pro-gay” – such as an offhand claim that Italian Cardinal Francesco Coccopalmerio and Archbishop Vincenzo Paglia (both former or current Vatican officials) “belong to the homosexual current in favor of subverting Catholic doctrine on homosexuality.”

Wait, John!  I thought suppositions were verboten?!  And really, fighting for traditional marriage and following the rule of keeping homosexuals out of seminary are political things?  You can keep your head in the sand about Coccopalmerio and Paglia, but that’s really how we got into this mess, isn’t it, John?  Sorry, but when you’ve already spoken highly of homosexual relationships AND your buddy you’re recommending for bishop gets arrested for hosting a homosexual orgy…

There’s also the question of why Viganò’s statement appeared today, on the very day Francis was struggling to address the abuse scandals in Ireland.  Adding all that up, the release of the statement can’t help but strike some as an orchestrated maneuver.

Oh, what mystifying conspiracy does that allude to?  And really, why suggest it when you’re just going to turn around and say:

(As a footnote, if this was indeed orchestrated, it had to be a pretty off-key orchestra. Had Viganò restricted himself to releasing a crisp, one-page statement focusing solely on the charge against Francis, a former nuncio’s standing would have guaranteed a wide echo. As things stand, it’s understandably difficult for many people to know quite what to make of it.)

Is it some grand design or isn’t it?  Could Archbishop Vigano simply given up hope that anything was ever going to be done after the decade or so of reports?

“I believe the statement speaks for itself, and you have enough journalistic capacity to reach the conclusions,” Pope Francis told reporters on Sunday.

Time will tell what conclusions are indeed reached, but a sober point of departure right now probably would blend genuine curiosity with healthy skepticism.

My skepticism lies with the hierarchy of the Church. The Pope’s lack of a response is troubling, particularly when, as you, John, so eloquently put it, he is fond of “taking questions on every topic under the sun with no filters and no limits, speaking without notes and delivering straight answers.”. Where are those straight answers? Why don’t you spend a little less time trying to downplay Archbishop Vigano and more time trying to get those answers for all of the victims? Writing things off as “political” doesn’t do a darn thing for them.

While Allen wants to suggest the whole testimony of Archbishop Vigano is supposition, again, please read the whole sad thing for yourself.  https://assets.documentcloud.org/documents/4784141/TESTIMONYXCMVX-XENGLISH-CORRECTED-FINAL-VERSION.pdf

Not five seconds after publication this came in:
https://www.documentcloud.org/documents/4788059-Nienstedt-English-Final.html

LifeSite also has an article with the supporting documents. https://www.lifesitenews.com/news/vigano-issues-new-statement-documents-to-clear-his-name-of-false-charges

Whatcha think John Allen?

This firm belongs to the group “Lawyers for All Families,” who fought against Archbishop Nienstedt over the approval of same-sex marriage in the State of Minnesota.

Who was the braniac who chose the law firm that wants to take down the Church in the “gay marriage” issue to investigate and how did anyone in authority agree to that?  Where should the skepticism lie again?  Can’t imagine why anyone would think that Archbishop Nienstedt wasn’t going to get a fair shake there.

 

 

The Top-Tier Villains

This!  Please read every last page of it. 

 https://assets.documentcloud.org/documents/4784141/TESTIMONYXCMVX-XENGLISH-CORRECTED-FINAL-VERSION.pdf

If you want to know what needs to be done, it’s this.  Good men need to step up and shed some light on the truth. WHO IS NEXT?!  Collegiality for the sake of collegiality and at great cost to the victims has got to stop.  I think we can all understand if a predator has gotten away with something under your reign due to their sly ways and insufficient evidence but the silence has got to stop no matter the personal cost to you.

With the exception of Wuerl who I had truly hoped was turning around after a few good statements, we have ranted against every single one of the American losers here at great length.  Their deceit, malfeasance and general stupidity is not a secret in any way.  Let’s go down the list:

McCarrick

Tobin (NOT Thomas Tobin)

Wuerl

Cupich

McElroy

Mahony

Farrell

O’Malley

And last but not least…

Martin

I would also add a few more but they’re more like the wallflower wannabees in the popular kids’ club. These are the dirty deed doers and EVERYONE KNOWS IT!  Think about it, it’s so well-known that a housewife from Nowhereville has the same top-tier villain list.

Thank you Archbishop Vigano!  I know your enemies are already preparing to mount an offensive.  I’ve already seen the warning shots.  Thank you for not remaining silent even though you know hell is headed your way.  In your kindness, dear readers, please keep him in your prayers.

And, please, dear good bishops and cardinals, don’t let leave him hanging all by himself.  If you know something, say it.  This is a time for true transparency instead of all the talk.

Oh, and yeah, by and large, this is an active homosexual problem or so says the hundreds of pages in the grand jury report.  Some should stop being so gleeful when a woman or child is raped or molested just so you can parrot the party line “Stop scapegoating homosexuals!”  It’s quite a sick tactic.  Stop wagering on the hope that nobody will bother to read for themselves.  If you really had the victims in mind you would take the first easy step of vetting seminarians for homosexual tendencies and adhering to the directives already in place.  I can tell you that 80% of the victims if would have been thankful to have had that done before their horror stories happened.

#stopthesilence #catholiccybermilitia

 

 

A Few Good Men

Oh, boy, here we go again!  Here are a bunch more policies and procedures coming our way. Never mind that immoral people don’t usually follow procedure. (Didn’t the McCarrick debacle teach us anything?) We’re still going to burden the rest of the good folks who, apparently, are as weak as those who have been caught and have zero common sense when it comes to how to avoid any appearance of impropriety. So, Cardinal Wuerl’s suggestion the Vatican and the church in America handle it is ridiculous. Honestly, insanity would be if we expected a different result after decades of fumbling this crisis.

How about we try a few other things first? Here are some suggestions:
The Holy Father

At the top of the list goes a canonical trial for McCarrick in an ecclesiastical court with, say, Cardinal Burke running the trial. Did I miss someone talking about this viable option??? I saw that McCarrick was “ordered to a life of prayer and penance until a canonical trial”, but when was the last time that actually happened? Usually we wait around for police to come a-knocking. Why do we need to wait for civil authorities, though? This isn’t the American judicial system where things like this take years to get to trial and many times the abusers die before being brought to judgment. The Church can act far more swiftly. If we think abusing people is a crime, how about we act like it? I know people are calling for laicization, but that’s the easy way out for them, and McCarrick resigning is sweet, too, but how about the Holy Father puts the right tough talk into action. There’s nobody else who can pull that trigger and haul his behind into an ecclesiastical court, for

In ecclesiastical law, cases affecting civil rulers or cardinals, also criminal cases of bishops, are still reserved exclusively to the Roman pontiff. http://www.newadvent.org/cathen/04447a.htm

Of course, the Holy Father can appoint people to represent him, but wouldn’t it say something if he actually presided?  After decades of this crud, it might be nice if a Pope had to sit and hear the testimony of the victims.  It could, however, be a “You can’t handle the truth!” moment.  The same thing applies to all of the other scandals around the world – Chile, Honduras, etc.  Want to stop it, Holy Father?  Acting like it’s a crime would be a start. Bring them all before an ecclesiastical court!

Our Priests

Then, how about we go back to some fire and brimstone homilies? Stop being the “Church of Nice” and talk about things that make people feel uncomfortable. Let them know what sin is and what happens as a result of it. For those of you who don’t know, that would be spiritual death and hell. When we adopt the “consequences don’t exist, just be nice” attitude, of course nobody realizes there are going to be repercussions for their actions, and that causes a ripple effect throughout society.

Structure, structure, and more structure. Quite frankly, the holiest and most effective priests I know don’t get a day, week, or month off (mainly because their bishops hate them). They’re so busy that they don’t have time to engage in immorality. Their precious time off is spent in their own spiritual direction and formation such as the annual retreat. How does this compare to, say, the life of my husband? He has to get up every day and go to work. When he gets home, he is a husband to his wife and a father to his children. Does he get to sit and watch TV and relax a bit? He does on a good day, but outside of his regular work schedule he has cars to fix, yard work, home repair, etc., and he never gets to take the dad thing off. That is his all-encompassing vocation. Even when he takes a moment to catch a beer with a friend, it’s kind of a mutual help session, not an “I can ditch my vocation for a few hours and let my mind wander.” That, quite frankly, is how many men get in trouble. They’re not enjoying the company of people struggling in a similar life, they’re “cutting loose.” They’re trying to escape from their lives, even if temporarily. Sadly, that small little breach usually becomes wider and wider. I’ve seen many a debate about whether priests should have a day off or get to retire. I say no.  Sound harsh? Let me explain. This isn’t to say they shouldn’t get time to relax. My husband has much less work time on the weekend. He does get to escape “the career” without every escaping the vocation. He rather mixes business with pleasure. So, am I saying Fr. So and So shouldn’t get to go play golf on Tuesdays? Nope. In fact, I’m sure much spiritual direction has been given and received on the links. I am saying that he shouldn’t be “checking out” from his vocation. We, as lay people, should also help in this area. Having the parish priest over for dinner can be mutually spiritually beneficial event. I think I’ve made it clear to my priest friends that I will be extremely displeased (use your own translation for this one) if they scandalize my kids in any way.

The Seminaries and Seminarians

Next, we need a few good men! We need to tell those who are discerning priesthood that there is, from the get go, a spiritual battle for their souls. Mortal combat will ensue. Clearly, the liberals see the priesthood as more of a fraternity where they are accepted and coddled (and apparently corrupted) the rest of their lives. Seminary should look more like bootcamp and a little less like college. Uncomfortable, hard, very structured, and the threat of discipline always looming overhead. That’s where “zero tolerance” needs to start. We need to encourage masculinity. We are suffering from a toxic lack of masculinity (hat tip Culture Project for this perfectly worded phrase). We need to teach them how to be fathers who are responsible for the physical and spiritual welfare of their families. In fact, might I suggest heavy physical as well as spiritual training?  Seriously, if the military engages in that form of formation, shouldn’t we go even further with our priests? There’s a reason the military engages in physical and psychological training. They want a cohesive unit, a disciplined unit, and most importantly, an obedient unit. In fact, when they started lowering their standards, they lost in all of those areas. When the Church gave up the “court-martial” of abusing priests (see my last post here), what did they think was going to happen? The same disaster happened when we no longer acted like dissenting from Church teaching was a bad thing.

Now, it sounds like some seminarians knew and were quite willing participants. That would be an epic failure on the part of the Church to 1) educate people that they have an immortal soul and 2) to properly vet seminarian candidates. Of course, I’m sure in some seminaries, they’re being vetted to see if they might be willing to be the type who would engage in some sort of lewd conduct. (Sigh.  Sometimes it’s hard to come from the point of view that this is not all seminaries and that there are some really good ones out there.) 

As for the seminarians who weren’t willing and were caught off guard, you knew when it happened to you. Thank you to the ones who did try to sound the alarm. I’m sure you were promptly booted for being too rigid. To the rest, I’m failing to understand how one could just go with the “I just wanted to survive the awful McCarrick seminarian days and move on to the priesthood.” Maybe that’s too harsh. I’m not blaming the victim but from now on, you guys need to have a plan in place. Maybe you didn’t even realize what the heck was going on until you were at the “What the hell?” moment. However, you were/are going for the job of saving souls – even the souls of your fellow wayward seminarians – so I’m not sure how louder whistles, or, rather, air horns weren’t sounded.  I’m sure you’d at least heard the word “millstone” once or twice. That’s how bad these creepers are.

While I don’t know what it’s like to prepare for the priesthood, I can definitely say that you’re probably going to experience a same-sex attracted incident somewhere along the way.  It’s permeated our society and our Church. Keep your head out of the sand and take the burden you’ve been given by that person and deal with it. Yep. It really is happening and it’s going to affect us all if you don’t speak up.  What’s worse? It might affect our youth. And, yes, based on the torment whistle-blowing seminarians have received, you are likely going to be persecuted. I’d love to say you’re going to go to your superior and he’s going to take care of it. That might be the case depending on where you are, but there’s too good of a chance it’s not going to happen. Start thinking of your future flock now. Be prepared for the possibility and have a plan of action. If your seminary refused to deal, move on to the bishop, the neighboring bishop, or if all else fails, perhaps the media. Oh, they’ll do something. They can’t resist. But, again, think about your future flock. I mean, seriously, when someone in your flock comes to you and says they’ve been a victim of some sort of abuse or harassment, what are you going to tell them? “Keep you head down and try to avoid the situation?!”

So, my young seminarian friends, let me cover something that has been apparently lacking all along the way. If someone harasses or abuses you, sound the alarm first and worry about the vocation later. The immediate “vocation” is to stop evil from happening. Worry about the rest later after you’ve gone this first round with satan. People I care about are in seminary, so I do not take this lightly.

I’m also partial to the idea that at least one class should be taught by a married couple with kids. I like to think of it as a course in reality. That would, of course, include the topic of the traumatized couple needing to go to confession should ANYONE hurt their child in any manner. I don’t think most abusers understand the depths of a parent’s love and the depth of insanity that appears when our kids are hurt. That alone could be a “scared straight” course.

The Laity

Parents of minors, why would your children ever need to be alone with a priest outside of a confessional? Yes, I’m probably a paranoid freak about the safety and well-being of my children, but you might want to join me. We still try to keep a very careful balance of not making our children fear priests and letting them know anyone can act in and evil immoral manner. Yes, that’s hard to do. We teach our kids they shouldn’t be alone with, really, any adult who is not us in a private space, and of course, the usual physical boundaries that should be taught should they ever find themselves in that situation.  Quite frankly how is it that some make it all the way to seminary and don’t know how to blow the proverbial whistle when someone is acting inappropriate is way beyond me.

Lastly, again, remember that satan exists and this is all his handiwork. We need to find the balance between Pollyana and suspicious. People who have done or will do satan’s work will and have always existed in the Church. We can’t let this take our faith away from us, no matter how shocking it’s been. If we don’t walk through life trying to figure out where satan is daily trying to steal our souls, then no matter what goes on in the world around us, he will get us at least a good portion of the time. #banfoxesinhenshouses #CatholicCyberMilitia

 

 

Georgetown Has an Identity but it Ain’t Catholic!

Hey, Georgetown, I’m disappointed in you! Really? You couldn’t come up with anyone more offensive to Catholic Doctrine than Cecile Richards? I guess Hitler’s dead, so he’s out. Xi Jinping, president of China, maybe? Come on, stretch your mind! I’m sure you can do it! At least you did manage to come up with someone more obnoxious than Larry Flynt. Cecile will be hard to top, but I’m quite confident that you can and will do it, unless someone finally gives you the time out you deserve.

http://www.cardinalnewmansociety.org/CatholicEducationDaily/DetailsPage/tabid/102/ArticleID/4738/BREAKING-Planned-Parenthood-President-Cecile-Richards-to-Speak-at-Georgetown.aspx

I’m sure the usual Jesuit gymnastics will kick in soon. You know, “Freedom of speech!”, “We listen to all point of view”, “How can we reach out to them if we don’t know them…”, “it’s not us, it’s a student organization”, etc. In other words, the usual load of Jesuit hooey.

None of this is going to change the fact that Cecile Richards is responsible for the death of almost 3 million babies via surgical and chemical abortion, and who knows how many more through contraception. Sorry that you care so little about the women at your university that you’re even letting her name be uttered there, much less giving her the royal treatment. I hope you have to pick up the pieces of the shattered lives you are contributing to so you learn.

What is Cardinal Wuerl going to do about this? The Cardinal Newman Society has already submitted a Canon Law case to him a while back: http://www.cardinalnewmansociety.org/catholiceducationdaily/detailspage/tabid/102/articleid/2277/canon-law-case-against-georgetown-submitted-to-cardinal-wuerl.aspx  Is Cardinal Wuerl going to stand by his most amazing piece of writing from last year that I discussed here: https://onemadmomblog.wordpress.com/2015/05/28/tang-or-fresh-squeezed/? Or is he going to wimp out and do nothing?

Before he acts(or doesn’t), I’d like to remind Cardinal Wuerl of his words (http://www.adw.org/wp-content/uploads/2015/05/Being-Catholic-Today-Pastoral-Letter.pdf):

The Church is not a business, a club, or a special-interest group. The Church is not the result of like-minded people coming together and deciding to form an organization, nor are her moral teachings decided by popular vote or societal trends.

And this:

When we come to the institutions of the Church – its parishes, schools, universities, charitable organizations, health care facilities and more – these too must reflect a genuine Catholic identity with visible communion with the Church, both universal and local, and fidelity to Catholic teaching. As Pope Francis has implored, each of these institutions and those involved in their operation must be oriented toward the mission of the Church (Evangelii gaudium, 27). The purpose of these entities – and the task of those who work for them – is to lead people to Jesus.

Is Cecile Richards helping Georgetown accomplish the mission of the Church, or is she doing just the opposite? Forget about Richards, what about Georgetown itself? I’m reasonably sure it’s a resounding “No!” It’s high time we cut them loose. They are an embarrassment. They’ll probably refuse an order to stop calling themselves Catholic, but at least the Church will have stated that they have lost that Catholic identity. Doesn’t sound like a big deal until you consider donors who want to donate to a Catholic label. That’s where it really hurts, and it’s all about the bottom dollar in places like Georgetown that don’t place a priority on being Catholic.

So, Catholics and pro-lifers everywhere should contact Cardinal Wuerl and let him know that, regardless of his honorary degree from GU, you think inviting Cecile Richards to Georgetown is an affront to the Faith and he should do something about it. The Archdiocese of Washington doesn’t seem to want to make contact too easy, so I’ll help you out:

Cardinal Wuerl on Twitter: https://twitter.com/cardinal_wuerl

Archdiocese of Washington on Twitter (maybe they’ll flag it for him): https://twitter.com/WashArchdiocese Mailing address: 5001 Eastern Ave, Hyattsville, MD 20782

Generic email: digitalmedia@adw.org

Phone number: 301.853.4500

Facebook (probably have to use the comments section, since they don’t allow you to post to the page): https://www.facebook.com/adw.org/

Personally, I recommend tweeting – a lot. Anyone got a clever hashtag? Please share. I also recommend joining the protests that will occur. I’m sure faithful Catholics and other pro-lifers are not going to sit on the sidelines while this happens. The Cardinal might want to note that this will not be quietly swept under the rug.

This is where the rubber meets the road, dear Cardinal. Either you think Catholic identity is important, or you do not. Either you care about the eternal souls of those under your care, or you do not. Either you are going to do your job, or you are going to turn a blind eye. Who said this again?

Furthermore, a particular responsibility is incumbent upon the bishop with regard to Catholic institutions and their Catholic identity (Veritatis splendor, 116). His is the responsibility to see that our Catholic institutions are places where the faith permeates the culture. Our schools, for example, at all levels, should provide the environment where revealed truth, reason and charity are engaged in an ongoing effort to shed greater light on the human condition. In whatever area of endeavor, the Catholic identity of the effort should be found, for example, in a mission statement. And the message it voices should exhibit a vision of life that is rooted in Christ, articulated in his Gospel and manifested in his Church.

Oh, yeah, it was you, Cardinal Wuerl. Please exercise your responsibility! If not now, when? Could there really be a worse situation you are waiting for? If you don’t act now, I’m sure that Georgetown will accommodate. Finding people to slap the faces of the faithful seems to be their hobby.

 

 

Cardinal Wuerl Must Have Seen a “Call to Battle!”

This: http://cardinalsblog.adw.org/2015/12/at-the-service-of-the-truth-and-love-of-jesus-christ/  Please read while I’m putting my eyes back in my head, tongue back in my mouth, and getting my chin off the floor! What the heck?! Can we get more of THIS Cardinal Wuerl? Better yet, can he please write responses for the Pope on this issue?  Just a couple of months ago I was lamenting his ambiguous synod comments and now this?

 

First, any person who struggles in trying to live according to the revealed truth of Catholic teaching should know the Church recognizes his or her dignity as created by God and that the person need not face life’s challenges apart from the grace of the Lord and his Church, which seeks only the highest good for everyone.

The Church recognizes that we all need to grow in faith and in closeness to the Lord. Simply acting contrary to Church teaching on occasion would not preclude serving as a ministerial employee or volunteer. For us to acknowledge that we are sinners, as we do, is to admit that occasionally we too have at times not lived up to the truth. On those occasions, we are expected to acknowledge our failings and seek to amend our lives in Christ.

However, if one persists or effectively insists that they are right and the Church is wrong, in the face of such irreconcilable differences it is not discrimination or punishment to say that continued ministerial service is not possible. It is not a question of personal private activity, but the social consequences of conduct which undermines the Church’s ability to fulfill her mission. When there is the potential for scandal that might lead people astray regarding the Catholic faith, continued service becomes untenable. (Emphasis from here on out, all mine!)

<Snip for brevity – it’s all awesome though!>

“We all are at the service of the mission of Christ,” and particularly for those in ministerial positions, “no one can claim a right simultaneously to work for the Church and to work against her belief” (23). When a person involved in ministerial activity offers a counter-witness to Catholic teaching by words or public conduct, however earnest they may be, experience shows that it can lead people away from the truth and otherwise have an adverse effect on our mission. The Church not only must be free to then take corrective steps, it has an obligation in charity and truth to do so.

<snip>

And no official would ever continue to employ someone who in his off-hours publicly demonstrated that he was opposed to the official’s policies or campaigned for the official’s opponent.

That last line harkens back to Archbishop Cordileone’s comment during his handbook fight. It’s a big “Duh!” the liberals just don’t seem to get or it’s the double standard they want us to simply take with our mouths shut.

The Church we serve is not ours, but Christ’s. The greatest mercy of the Church is to be faithful witnesses of his truth and love. It is precisely through the witness of authentic Catholic teaching, which is the revealed truth of the Gospel, that the parishioners in the pews, the young people in our schools, the people served in our charitable ministries, and the world at large will find salvation.

This is kind of the perfect response I wish the Holy Father had given, rather than the “Who am I to judge?” response.  I think every cardinal and bishop should bookmark this one. No need to re-invent the wheel. Clear. Concise. No backpedaling and, most importantly, NO APOLOGIES for doing what the Church is supposed to do! Did I think I’d be giving kudos to Cardinal Wuerl twice in a year’s time? I’m not sure I thought I’d even do it once.  Here’s hoping 2016 sees that trend continue and here’s hoping our cardinals and bishops continue to focus on strengthening the mission of the Church in this new year!

 

 

The Tragic Error

I know “THE RULING” came out on Friday, but if you didn’t hear a homily this weekend that at least mentioned the SCOTUS marriage debacle or Religious Freedom, that might be why we’re in the mess we’re in today.  A disaster of this epic proportion at least deserves a nod, don’t you think?  Let’s hope by next weekend, we’ve all heard about it from our individual pastors.

Thanks to Catholic World Report, I was able to spend the day reading the comments from many of the U.S. Bishops (http://www.catholicworldreport.com/Blog/3985/bishops_across_the_country_weigh_in_on_scotus_ruling.aspx). I’m sure they’ll be posting more as they come in, but I have to say, I was underwhelmed by most of them.  I realize these are just preliminary statements, but you’d think that something of this magnitude would deserve more than just a short paragraph or two.  Some of them didn’t even bother mentioning the children who are affected.  As a mom, it has been just devastating to me to think about how this is going to affect my children, grandchildren, and children in general.  Thank you to those bishops and cardinals who took the time to mention that all children deserve a mom and a dad as the norm (you can keep your anomalies to yourselves; nobody is trying to offend you by not listing them all).  Considering how long it’s taking us to turn around Roe vs. Wade in the mind of the public, it is likely going to affect my great-grandchildren and beyond.  Kennedy was Reagan’s worst mistake

I really can’t decide whose statements are the worst.  Many were just lacking.  I have to admit I’m a tad bit annoyed at the bishops who reminded us that we must be civil and respectful of all human beings even if they disagree with us.  I missed who was advocating something other than being Christian.  It seemed more of a media play.  One comment I wasn’t particularly thrilled about was this ambiguous one from Bishop McElroy:

The Catholic community of San Diego and Imperial counties will continue to honor and embody the uniqueness of marriage between one man and one woman as a gift from God–in our teaching, our sacramental life and our witness to the world.  We will do so in a manner which profoundly respects at every moment the loving and familial relationships which enrich the lives of so many gay men and women who are our sons and daughters, our sisters and brothers, and ultimately our fellow pilgrims on this earthly journey of life.

Why wouldn’t we respect loving, familial relationships of people with homosexual inclinations?  There’s certainly nothing wrong with those.  Is he separating the words “loving” and “familial” for a reason?  What kind of familial relationships are we talking, NON-loving familial ones?  Ask me why I’m asking. Why, thanks!  Back in the Archbishop Quinn days, Bishop McElroy (then Msgr. McElroy) appeared to be part of the club that rejected the Vatican’s prohibition of homosexual adoption and the broad extension of civil rights to homosexuals.  He didn’t feel it was binding on them but rather an advisory (https://web.archive.org/web/20080906233415/http://www.ignatius.com/Magazines/CWR/charities.htm). Of course, that’s how most things from the Vatican were received in the SF Archdiocese during the Archbishop Quinn days.  They were simply opinions to be ignored, so forgive me for being skeptical about Bishop McElroy’s current statement.  If Bishop McElroy is hinting that we must be respectful of homosexual acts or their desire to adopt children, nope we don’t.  Given the history, it’s really hard to tell.  Now’s not the time for unclear statements.

As far as the good statements, here’s an amazing one from Bishop Strickland of Tyler, TX.  Your Excellency, thank you for giving one of the biggest tongue lashings on this one.  I’m going to quote it in its entirety, because I don’t want anyone to miss one line of it (https://www.dioceseoftyler.org/news/2015/06/bishop-stricklands-statement-on-u-s-supreme-court-decision/):

Bishop of Tyler

TO THE PRIESTS, DEACONS, CONSECRATED RELIGIOUS AND CATHOLIC FAITHFUL OF THE DIOCESE OF TYLER, OUR BROTHERS AND SISTERS OF OTHER FAITH TRADITIONS, AND ALL PEOPLE OF GOOD WILL IN THE THIRTY-THREE COUNTIES OF NORTHEAST TEXAS THAT MAKE UP THE DIOCESE OF TYLER:

On the morning of June 26, 2015, the Supreme Court of the United States handed down a 5-4 decision establishing the legal right of two individuals of the same sex to legally marry in all 50 states. By doing so, the Court has acted in contradiction to their duty to promote the common good, especially what is good for families. I join with the Bishops of the United States in calling this decision a “tragic error.”

Let me unambiguously state at the outset that this extremely unfortunate decision by our government is unjust and immoral, and it is our duty to clearly and emphatically oppose it.  In spite of the decision by the Supreme Court, there are absolutely no grounds for considering unions between two persons of the same sex to be in any way similar to God’s plan for marriage and the family. Regardless of this decision, what God has revealed and what the Church therefore holds to be true about marriage has not changed and is unchangeable.

Marriage is not just a relationship between human beings that is based on emotions and feelings. Rather, our Sacred Scriptures and Sacred Traditions tell us that God established true marriage with its own special nature and purpose, namely the good of the spouses and the procreation and education of children.

While taking a strong stand for marriage is the duty of all who call themselves Christian, every type of unjust discrimination against those with homosexual tendencies should be avoided. We must treat these individuals with loving kindness and respect based on their dignity as human persons. Christ rejects no one, but he calls all of us to be converted from our sinful inclinations and follow the truth He has revealed to us. Nevertheless, our continued commitment to the pastoral care of homosexual persons cannot and will not lead in any way to the condoning of homosexual behavior or our acceptance of the legal recognition of same-sex unions.

While some of us may have family members who have same-sex attraction, and there are even some who are members of our local churches, this decision to require the legal recognition of so-called marriage between homosexual persons should in no way lead us to believe that the living out of this orientation or the solemnizing of relationships between two persons of the same sex is a morally acceptable option.

We know that unjust laws and other measures contrary to the moral order are not binding in conscience, thus we must now exercise our right to conscientious objection against this interpretation of our law which is contrary to the common good and the true understanding of marriage.

Given this and recognizing my responsibility and moral authority as the shepherd of this Church of Tyler, I will shortly issue a decree in this Diocese establishing, as particular law, that no member of the clergy or any person acting as employee of the Church may in any way participate in the solemnization or consecration of same-sex marriages, and that no Catholic facilities or properties, including churches, chapels, meeting halls, Catholic educational, health or charitable institutions, or any places dedicated or consecrated, or use for Catholic worship, may be used for the solemnization or consecration of same-sex marriages.

Finally, I call on the Catholic faithful of the Diocese to turn in prayer to the Holy Family of Jesus, Mary and Joseph, asking their intercession for our nation that all of us may come to a greater understanding of the beauty, truth and goodness that is found in marriage as revealed to us by our Savior.

I instruct that this letter is to be publically read by the priest-celebrant following the proclamation of the Gospel at all Masses of obligation in the parishes, missions and chapels of Diocese of Tyler on the weekend of July 3-4, 2015.

Given at the Diocesan Chancery On the 26th day of June Friday of the 12th Week in Ordinary Time In the Year of Our Lord Two Thousand Fifteen

Most Reverend Joseph E. Strickland Bishop of Tyler

Now, I don’t really know the Diocese of Tyler or Bishop Strickland (I just simply have more going on then to know them all – sorry, it’s a mom thing – I barely can keep my kids straight some days), but I’d have to say the faithful there have been blessed by this statement.  It is clear in every respect, and when he said, “let me be unambiguous,” he meant he was going to be the opposite of Bishop McElroy!  This is how it’s done!

Bishop Strickland is right!  We should not just sit here and resign ourselves to it. We should work, no matter how long it takes, to overturn this sucker.  Yep, it’s likely to take as long as overturning Roe vs. Wade, but we must chip away at it constantly and save as many of our children as we can.

Bishop Strickland is the one bishop I saw who used the “dignity” statement and yet clarified to the hilt that we couldn’t condone sin and we ALL should turn away from our sinful inclinations.  Bravo!

I am really glad Bishop Strickland is in Texas, for his sake, because I’m just guessing he’ll be a little better received there than if he were in San Francisco.  If the “100 Prominent Something or Others” here in the San Francisco area thought their teacher handbook had inflammatory language in the beginning, they’d be out of their minds with this one.  (Let’s hear it one more time!)

Given this and recognizing my responsibility and moral authority as the shepherd of this Church of Tyler, I will shortly issue a decree in this Diocese establishing, as particular law, that no member of the clergy or any person acting as employee of the Church may in any way participate in the solemnization or consecration of same-sex marriages, and that no Catholic facilities or properties, including churches, chapels, meeting halls, Catholic educational, health or charitable institutions, or any places dedicated or consecrated, or use for Catholic worship, may be used for the solemnization or consecration of same-sex marriages.

I pray this man continues defending the Faith in this amazing and concise way! God bless Bishop Strickland!

I also want to give a few other tips of the hat.  Once again, Cardinal Wuerl seemed to have put a lot of thought and effort into his statement, which I appreciate, because this is so crucial.  Here are a couple highlights (http://cardinalsblog.adw.org/2015/06/the-implications-of-the-supreme-courts-ruling-on-same-sex-marriage/):

Our faith is not based on human preferences but the revealed Word of God.

<snip>

The ancient Maxim “love the sinner but hate the sin” is central to our behavior because it refers to all human beings. The Lord asks us to “be perfect, just as your heavenly Father is perfect,” but he does so in reference to how we are to love one another (Matthew 5:48). In the Sacraments, he also gives us the grace to do so. The Church has and always will meet people where they are to bring them closer to Christ.

Bishop Wenski made a short but strong statement that shows us what we’re in for in this country, and it’s not pretty. He shows the history of bad laws and their consequences (http://www.miamiarch.org/CatholicDiocese.php?op=Article_Statement+by+Archbishop+Wenski+on+Supreme+Court%92s+decision+on+same-sex+marriage):

Roe v. Wade has resulted in more than 50 million abortions.  Yet, abortion still troubles the conscience of America and an increasing majority of Americans reject “abortion on demand”.

This decision redefining marriage will also bring bad consequences. Losing the understanding of marriage in our culture as a conjugal union of a man and a woman in a permanent and exclusive commitment conducive to welcoming and raising the children born from such a union weakens the family as the basic cell of society; and it imperils the human flourishing of future generations. Allowing “an act of the will” to be substituted for “legal judgment” is a recipe for tyranny.

The Michigan bishops’ joint statement (http://www.micatholic.org/advocacy/news-room/news-releases/2015/bishops-respond-to-decision-to-redefine-marriage/) heavily focused on the rights of the child (we miss you out here Archbishop Vigneron!):

Every child has a mother and a father and even though each child deserves to be loved and raised by them together, we are conscious of and loving toward those circumstances in which this arrangement of a married mother and father in the home is not reality. Married couples unable to conceive children or family structures that differ – single parents, widowed parents, adopted children and those being raised by grandparents or other family members – merit compassion and support for their life situations, which at times can be difficult and challenging. The Church and her ministries must remain conscious of and respectful toward these differing dynamics, especially when support, counsel and love is sought.

The Colorado Bishops’ Conference also defended the rights of children and predicted doom and gloom. Sadly, I’m sure they are correct (https://t.e2ma.net/message/mm60g/ew4jvd):

The coming months will likely be filled with more questions than answers, given the thousands of laws nationwide related to marriage that will be adversely impacted by the court’s action. We are concerned that hateful rhetoric and discrimination against those, whose religious and moral beliefs support the true definition of marriage that has existed for millennia, will intensify. We will continue to pray that people with differing views on marriage will be able to express their beliefs and convictions without fear of intimidation or hostility, and more importantly that religious freedom and liberty will be supported and defended.

The days, weeks, months and years ahead will require courage, strength and prayer. All people of good will must remain united in defense of marriage between one man and one woman, while bearing witness to the love and mercy of Jesus Christ.

I’m sure Archbishop Coakley will get dinged for using rhetoric, but he chose the correct adjectives – tragic and devastating.

(http://www.archokc.org/top-news/5514-archbishop-coakley-statement-on-supreme-court-ruling-for-same-sex-marriage).

Read them and weep my friends. These are indeed the times that try men’s souls. Maybe some trials are very good for the souls. I suppose something has to wake up the slumbering and a little persecution will do that. I just pray for our future generations. If our cardinals, bishops and priests stand up and lead, we’ll be fine. If not, it’s going to be a long, long road of tragedy and devastation.

Imagine: Is This How John Thought It Would Turn Out?

I think we have seen enough people commenting on Laudato Si today.  I’m not going to touch that one.  There would seem to be a lot of different interpretations around from various people I’d tend to consider faithful Catholics.  I’ll have to hunker down and read it soon.  I, myself, wasn’t too worried, but others seemed to be in a near panic about its release.  From what little I’ve read, “Be good Catholics!” has seemingly been the message.

Instead, I am going to focus on the terrible shooting in South Carolina and what’s been coming out of the liberals mouths ever since: “Guns! It’s all the fault of the guns!”  Sorry, Mr. President and all your loyal followers, this is your fault that this has happened over and over again!  When you teach the nation’s children on a daily basis that belief in God is wrong, killing children in the womb is right, and morality is whatever you want to make of it, this is what you get.  There is no belief that life is sacred.  I’m not really sure how any of you liberals can honestly look America in the eye and call this shooting evil.  I can, but can you?  You’ve said time and again that murder is a choice and reality is what you want it to be, not what it actually is.  What did you expect?  I’m sure this young man had a reality all his own.  You rubber stamped his right to his reality so his wishes and whims superseded everyone else’s.  What?  That’s not what you meant?

Archbishop Wuerl spoke to the AFL-CIO the other day (http://saltandlighttv.org/blog/general/cardinal-wuerl-the-catholic-ideal-of-solidarity-and-the-new-evangelization).  The speech didn’t get a lot of play, but it was, once again, actually pretty good.  I’m not yet used to “bold Catholicism” coming out of his mouth, but it is so refreshing!  Somebody always has to chime in with, “Yeah, we’ll see about that,” but frankly, I don’t care what the man did or didn’t do yesterday, he’s been kind of awesome as of late.  Keep it up Cardinal!  To the rest of us, give credit where credit is due.  One part of the speech, in particular, hit me when I heard about the shooting in South Carolina:

A number of years ago I was invited to speak at the Catholic Center at Harvard University. The designated theme was “The Role of Faith in a Pluralistic Society.” At the conclusion of my presentation, a skeptical professor who self-identified as an atheist and who taught in the law school was the first to present a question. He asked, “What do you people think you bring to our society?”

The reference to “you people” was to the front row of the audience that was made up of representatives of a variety of religious traditions, all of whom were in their appropriate identifiable robes.

Since he was a lawyer, I asked if he would mind if I answered his question with a question of my own. When he nodded in agreement, I asked: “What do you think the world would be like if it were not for the voices of all of those religious traditions represented in the hall? What would it be like if we did not hear voices in the midst of the community saying, you shall not kill, you shall not steal, you shall not bear false witness?

What would our culture be like had we not heard religious imperatives such as love your neighbor as yourself, do unto others as you would have them do to you?

How much more harsh would our land be if we did not grow up hearing, blessed are they who hunger and thirst for righteousness, blessed are the merciful, blessed are the peacemakers?

What would the world be like had we never been reminded that someday we will have to answer to God for our actions?”

To his credit, the man who asked the question smiled broadly and said, “It would be a mess!”

Well, America, welcome to the mess that’s been created by vilifying the unborn, the elderly, Christianity in general, Catholicism in particular, and ignoring morality. You reap what you sow, and you’ve sowed it well. Guns are not the evil that killed these people. The lack of respect for God, the devaluing of human life, and the blatant disregard of the consequences of our actions led to this tragedy. Give yourselves a pat on the back for this one, liberals. You wanted to “Imagine” it like John Lennon, and you’re seeing what it will be like if Christianity doesn’t fight back with everything they’ve got.

Cardinal Wuerl goes on to say:

Recent popes have spoken about certain social and cultural challenges in our world today, including relativism, which denies the existence of objective truth and the natural moral order; secularism, which treats religion as a solely private matter and thus dismisses appreciation of God and the importance of religious faith, values and institutions in the public square; materialism, which can all too easily focus attention on personal gain at the expense of the common good and the needs of others, and individualism which can center on the self and lose sight of our dependence on others as well as the responsibilities that we bear towards each other.

There also persist in our culture various ideologies and mentalities which view all of social life through the lens of economic class, ethnic, racial or sexual identity, ideology or political party preference. Here, we see the separation of people into competing interests.

Pope Francis with his clear words and inviting ways offers a powerful counterpoint to these forces. He speaks often in opposition to a “globalization of indifference” and a “throwaway culture” in our world today, “according to which everything is disposable. A culture that always leaves people out of the equation” – the unborn, young people, the elderly, the sick, those who are deemed to be of no use (Interview, Radio of the Archdiocese of Rio, July 27, 2013).

Can anyone look around the world we’ve seen lately and deny that we live in a throwaway culture?  We literally throw human beings away on a daily basis! Society no longer says there is an objective truth a la Dolezal and Jenner. Archbishop Salvatore Cordileone (#cardinalcordileone) knows all too well that natural moral order went out the window a long time ago for those railing against him.  Now we have 9 dead because society convinced a kid that none of the people he shot had intrinsic value.  Heck, he might not have thought them people at all because objective truth went bye-bye.  There was no thought about the consequences of his actions, let alone about God or life. People are going to have to stop blaming everything other than the what is actually causing this to happen. Plain and simple – society has made these kids this way. The liberals pushed for moral relativism, and the Catholic Church let them roll right over them for the sake of political correctness.  Basically, a few good men did nothing.  Edmund Burke was right about that one.

I’m hoping the new generation of a few good men will do something or we will just keep living in a dystopian novel of insanity and violence.  The Catholic Church has got to lead the way on this one.  Not only do they need to rally each other, they need to rally all of Christianity.  The laity must urge our cardinals and bishops to lead this fight as much as we possibly can because I hate to imagine the insanity that awaits our future grandchildren if we fail.