30 December 2016

Question of the Day: "How Would an Adult Act If One Were Currently President of the U.S.?"

Vladimir Putin gives a good example.  He is schooling our dear leader in international relations and, for that matter, leadership.

De-escalating the situation until a Constitutionally-mandated change of leadership is a smart move by Putin. It also benefits us, as he is seeking to avoid the war Obama, Hillary and the chicken-hawks Mc Cain and Grahamnesty desperately want.

Keep a weather eye out until January 20; Chavez ain't out yet.

Good Stuff

From EOTT:



Well, the novus ordo is certainly one area where we know that the Russians didn't hack anything.

29 December 2016

Did I Mention He's an Idiot??

And dangerous? And reckless?

I apologize if I have been unclear.

Typical, feckless Democrat foreign policy. Talk tough, get in a bind, blame it on someone else. He is really spoiling for WWIII before Trump can get in office; since Operation Hillary failed spectacularly, the masters must find another way.

Hey, media, why not report something instead of functioning as the DNC party propaganda office?

Dear Building Management,

Dear Uber-Neighbor, Dear Guy with the three thousand inflatables in his yard since Halloween, Dear QT clerk, and all my wonderful fellow men,

It's still Christmas! It's not even New Year's Day, let alone Epiphany, or February 2nd!  Christ is born in Bethlehem of Juda!  Rejoice!

Merry Christmas!

28 December 2016

Dear Bill DeWitt: If You Ever Want Me to Stop Buying Tickets, Just Do This

I would say that nobody would fall for this, but we know that's not true.  It seems that professional sports are going to a biometrics-based scheme to "facilitate" the easy entry of fans into their venues. That's right-- you want to see Adam Wainwright pitch? Just give us your iris scan.  We'll take care of it.  

I would say I'm flabbergasted, but I knew that our future was dim when I found out Six Flags wants your fingerprints to get a season pass.

Fire Damages Sanctuary at St. Monica Parish

Arson is being investigated.

27 December 2016

This Man is an Idiot

And recklessly dangerous, too.

Meditation on the Sleep of the Infant Jesus

A wonderful Canticle by St. Alphonsus Liguori, translated by Rev. R.A. Coffin, found in The Liturgical Year. If you don't own The Liturgical Year, you really ought to put it on next year's Christmas List.


Mary sings - the ravish'd heavens
Hush the music of their spheres;
Soft her voice, her beauty fairer
Than the glancing stars appears:
While to Jesus slumbering nigh.
Thus she sings her lullaby.

Sleep my Babe! my God! my Treasure!
Gently sleep: but ah! the sight
With its beauty so transports me,
I am dying of delight:
Thou canst not thy Mother see,
Yet thou breathest flames to me.

If within your lids unfolded,
Slumbering eyes! you seem so fair;
When upon my gaze you open,
How shall I your beauty bear?
Ah! I tremble when you wake,
Lest my heart with love should break.

Cheeks than sweetest roses sweeter.
Mouth where lurks a smile divine -
Though the kiss my Babe should waken,
I must press those lips to mine.
Pardon, Dearest, if I say,
Mother's love will take no nay.

As she ceased, the gentle Virgin
Clasped the Infant to her breast.
And upon his radiant forehead
Many a loving kiss impress'd:
Jesus woke, and on her face
Fixed a look of heavenly grace.

Ah! that look, those eyes, that beauty.
How they pierce the Mother's heart;
Shafts of love from every feature
Through her gentle bosom dart
Heart of stone! can I behold
Mary's love, and still be cold?

Where, my soul! thy sense, thy reason?
When will these delays be o'er?
All things else, how fair so ever.
Are but smoke:- resist no more!
Yes! 'tis done! I yield my arms
Captive to those double charms.

If, alas, O heavenly beauty!
Now so late those charms I learn.
Now at least, and ever, ever,
With thy love my heart will burn
For the Mother and the Child,
Rose and Lily undefiled.

Plant and fruit, and fruit and blossom,
I am theirs, and they are mine;
For no other prize I labour,
For no other bliss I pine;
Love can every pain requite,
Love alone is full delight.

Feast of St. John

We pray to thee, O holy Apostle! for the Church of God. She was planted and watered by thy labours, embalmed with the celestial fragrance of thy virtues, and illumined by thy sublime teachings; - pray now, that these graces may bring forth their fruit, and that, to the end of her pilgrimage, faith may be firm, the love of Jesus fervent, and christian morals pure and holy. Thou tellest us, in thy Gospel, of a saying of thy Divine Master: I will not now call you my Servants, but my Friends [John 15:15]: pray, dear Saint, that there may come to this, from our hearts and lips, a response of love and courage, telling our Emmanuel, that, like thyself, we will follow him whithersoever he leads us.

--from The Liturgical Year. A very timely prayer for our Church, in the midst of crisis.

On this day also, traditionally, is the blessing of wine, in honor of St. John's deliverance from poison. There is still the opportunity tonight at St. Francis de Sales Oratory after 6:30pm Mass. More info on the custom generally, here.

26 December 2016

Canon Commins Hits the Ice

Merry Christmas! STLToday has just posted a nice article on St. Francis de Sales Oratory's own Canon Jean-Baptiste Commins.  In the Summer, you can see him at the basketball court; in the Winter, the ice rink.

Oh, and I guess I should mention you can see him celebrating Mass and hearing confessions, too.

Like all the priests at SFDS, they spend lots of time in the confessional, and are zealous in the celebration of the Church's liturgy. We are blessed to have them.

(An aside: In a past post on the sign and sacramental that is the Roman cassock, many commenters agreed with me that the cassock, while it sets one apart as undeniably a cleric, is also a magnet that draws ordinary people into seeking out that priest. He is apart, or to say it another way, holy, set apart for a purpose. But that state also communicates that he is there for us. Set apart for us

People respond to the cassock. 

Unlike some critics whose motivations are questionable, far from feminizing a priest, the cassock is a manly garb. The vast majority of priests wearing it are manly, as men should be.)

Be that as it may, just wait until I give him trouble about being dashing

25 December 2016

Merry Christmas

My sincere best wishes and prayers for a holy and happy Christmastide to all readers. Christ is born!





24 December 2016

Annual Repost: Two Christmas Eves



There would be tea brewing on the stove in the kitchen. The coals would show red with thin blue flames where one of the stove covers had been tilted. Then, there would be a candle, perhaps two, for there could only be candles on Christmas Eve. They would be burned down pretty low now, it being after eleven o'clock when he would reach home. About ten minutes past eleven, he always reached home. His stamping the snow off his shoes on the steps outside would be the signal for the handful of tea to be dropped into the pot. There would be candles in the next room, too, the dining room they called it. And then beyond that, another candle or two. Always candles on Christmas Eve. Not many candles. A few candles, but good candles special for the vigil. They would spear the dark with steady yellow flames, and make long, rich shadows on the walls and on the pictures on the walls. The ceiling would be lighted without shadows.



There were never shadows like these Christmas Eve candle shadows. They gave mystery to the house, and a soft strangeness that you never found on any other night.



The Boy would throw his hat and coat on the chair by the kitchen stove. Then, he would go on through the dining room, as they called it, into the other room. She would meet him, as she got up from the floor where she would be setting out the presents before the tiny crib. Her knees would be stiff, he knew, and her poor body tired, but she would get up with her white face happy in spite of its whiteness, and her always bright eyes brighter, and she would turn to him for a glance of appreciative pleasure. He knew she would look for that, though she had made the house clean, had washed and mended the old lace curtains, had scrubbed the floors--hadn't he noticed the kitchen floor, white with the grain showing?-- had swept and dusted not so much for his pleasure this night, but because God was coming. But she would look to see if he were happy. He would scowl. It was defensive, or perverse. But he would scowl, and while he scowled he would notice how white her hair showed on the side that caught the light of the candles.



"My poor boy is tired," she would say.



Then he could hold the scowl no longer. He would say:



"Ma, the crib is beautiful."



Then he would get down on his knees beside it. There would be a little red sanctuary lamp on the floor before it, with the white wick floating in oil. At twelve o'clock the lamp would be lighted. If you should happen into the room--the parlor they called it-- in the early hours when the candles would be out, you would see only this, the red lamp with its tiny light flickering. It would cast a spell over you, this unsteady small light showing red on the floor beneath you. You would stand there and look at it, unstirring, unthinking, for minutes.



So, the Boy would get down on his knees beside the crib. It would be the same little crib they had last Christmas, and the Christmas before that. There would be the little imitation thatch shed, open in front. Outside, would be three shepherds with two sheep, kneeling. Inside, would be St. Joseph with his brown cloak and white beard and our Mother with her blue dress. In back would be the ox and the ass, the ox with his head low. And in the center, on a few wisps of hay-- real hay that the peddler fed his horse--would be the tiny figure of Him who was all the world.



He would kneel there, before the shed that was not a foot high, and move the figures about a bit. He always liked to have the ox and ass close to the crib. Then, he would study the presents, laid out before the crib as tenderly as the Wise Men must have laid out their gifts. They would still be in their boxes. He would not touch them, not until daybreak. Then, they would all stop for a swift minute on their way out to Mass.



Afterward, after Mass and Communion, they, with their glass of water drunk but not yet with breakfast, would strew the floor with red strings and wrapping paper and boxes. How much colorful rubbish a few little things could make! For there were but a few things before the crib: a fountain pen, a tie, two books, a box of handkerchiefs... He could recognize everything from their boxes, thin square boxes for handkerchiefs, long boxes for gloves and ties. . . . But he knew, anyway. He and his mother had conspired together for the family. He had his gifts, too. But they would not be put out until he was safely in bed....



Then, she would call from the kitchen. He had better hurry. It was getting close on midnight. So he would have his cup of tea, and a slice of brown-crusted white bread that had come from the oven that afternoon. And maybe a piece of the fruit cake, the rich, dark fruit cake heavy with spice and raisins that was always in the house on Christmas Eve. She would have her cup of tea with the cream-- for they would use the cream tonight-- showing brown gold on top. But she would have only tea for it was the vigil of Christmas.



That would be beautiful. He would tell her all that had happened at work. How old Nelson was worried because his little girl was ill, and it was Christmas Eve. How the yardmaster who cursed constantly was quiet today, and swore only when he was mad. How Big Mike had gone down to St. Mary's to confession with him, and how the church was crowded. Everything, everything. . . .



And then he would empty his pockets of all his money, including the gold piece the firm had given him for Christmas. That would be his supreme moment-- to give over every dollar, every cent. He had been doing that so long now but it never, for some strange reason, failed to make him gulp with happiness. Hadn't they bought the piano together, his mother and he, the upright piano with the green covering that came with it? Hadn't thy bought the new heavy rug for the parlor, the two of them, conspiring this way? Weren't they saving now to buy the house?-- the house out of town a little distance, the house with a garden, quiet, but near the church.



How happily she would look at him. How proudly. And he would drain his teacup so that he could hold the cup high and hide his eyes, his moist eyes. . . .



That would be beautiful, beautiful.



"Pray for those poor souls who have no home on Christmas Eve," she would say, as always she had said.



And the Boy would pray.







The Pullman porter gave a quick turn to the Young Man's chair. The Young Man who had been dozing sat up abruptly.



"Grand Central, suh."



The porter was holding his overcoat.



The Young Man was dazed.



Wasn't there tea brewing, and a red fire showing where the stove corner had been tilted? And across from him. . . .



Across from him was a row of Pullman chairs. Empty, of course. Who else but a harried reporter would be traveling thus into New York at eleven o'clock on Christmas Eve?



The porter took his tip and was gone. The Young Man made his way hazily out into the station.



And there were candles, one or two that spotted the room with yellow flames and threw long shadows. . . .



"Reservation?" asked the room clerk in the hotel.



The Young Man nodded and wrote his name. A tall bald-headed man in a dinner jacket staggered across the heavily ornate hotel lobby. Two gaudy young women tittered.



Candles, a few candles. . . .



"Front!"



A thin, small, ageless bellboy, in blue uniform and silver braid, appeared mechanically. He took his bags and led the way to the elevator.



And she was there, rising from the crib on the floor. How white her hair showed where it caught the light of the candles. . . .



"The heat on, sir?" The bellboy was turning the valve on the radiator. The steam began to pound through the pipes.



The Young Man moved to the window. Twenty stories below him the city was stirring out of its newly laid cover of snow. Even in the dark, the roofs were white, the cornices and window ledges were white. Far, far down, the streets were white, white spotted with black, streaked with black.



"Looks like a white Christmas."



The bellboy spoke impatiently. The Young Man gave him his tip. He banged the door as he left.



The Young Man turned back to the window.



It was the same little crib with its imitation thatch, and the few wisps of hay-- real hay the peddler fed his horse. . . .



The Young Man looked down. Everywhere there were lights, ragged lights, pointed lights, clustered lights, solitary lights, white, red, yellow lights. But the Young Man did not see. He drew the shade and turned from the window.



And there was St. Joseph in his brown cloak and our Lady in her blue dress and the tiny figure of Him who was all the world. . . .



The Young Man still had on his overcoat. Under the mirror of the dresser was a collar button of a former guest which the maid, in her cleaning, had missed. He fixed his eyes on it but did not see. He was without heart and his mind whirred. Where, he was asking himself dazedly, where in this world's maze of people and places, where in this wilderness of stars and philosophies, where is Home?



Hadn't they bought the piano together, and the rug....



The Young Man threw himself on the bed.



"Dear Jesus! Dear Mother of God!"



His sobbing filled his cell in the mountain of earth and steel, glass and stone.



"Dear Mother of God!"



And she would say, "Pray for those poor souls who have no home on Christmas Eve..."



"Dear Jesus!" He sobbed.



The while midnight came, and with it Christmas.

 
--From Dan England and the Noonday Devil, Myles Connolly, 1951

Christmas Eve Morning


Jer. 29:11, 12, 14

Said the Lord: "I think thoughts of peace and not of affliction. You shall call upon Me and I will hear you, and I will bring you back from captivity from all places."

____________

Since the moment I read the passage above on the 23rd Sunday after Pentecost earlier this year, I have drawn great comfort and joy from it. From that day to today, so many things that have happened in the world and the Church that confirm the trust and joy we must have in God and His plan. 

He thinks thoughts of peace and not of affliction. 

We shall call upon Him and He will hear us.

He will bring back us back from all our captivity.

Of course, we deserve punishment for our sins and those of the world. Of course, if we were hit with the chastisement Our Lady forewarned us of at Fatima, Akita and other places, we would have no cause for complaint.  But get this: there is a reason He sent His Mother to us. There is a reason He was born in Bethlehem.

He thinks thoughts of peace and not of affliction.

Our prayers always are heard by God, and lately it seems that on some of the larger issues in the Church and world the answers are positive: In the one field, Brexit, Trump, and other votes in Europe finally bring a defense against the centrally planned globalist regime of slavery. In the other, the dubia of the Four brave Cardinals have roused the faithful from despair, paralysis and lethargy. We have identified a way to witness for Christ in the saddest of circumstances.

We have called upon Him and He has heard us.

And of course, more important for each of us than our external freedom, our lives, even the visible structure of the Church, is freedom from sin. The times, being evil, are making us wake up. The sifting of souls in response to the truth is what Christ said it was: a sword. It divides. We are for Christ or against Him. We must remain faithful. He will come quickly to save us.

He will bring back us back from all our captivity.

So, be joyful. Be thankful. Our Lord is nigh! Come, let us adore Him! And what better way than to meditate upon the martyrology from today's Prime, which as usual anticipates the martyrology of the succeeding day. Thus, today, we read these wonderful words:
____________

In the year, from the creation of the world, when in the beginning God created Heaven and Earth, five, thousand, one hundred and ninety-nine; from the flood, two thousand, nine hundred and fifty-seven; from the birth of Abraham, two thousand and fifteen;  from Moses and the coming of the Israelites out of Egypt, one thousand, five hundred and ten; from the anointing of King David, one thousand and thirty-two; in the sixty-fifth week, according to the prophecy of Daniel; in the one hundred and ninety-fourth Olympiad; in the year seven hundred and fifty-two from the founding of the city of Rome; in the forty-second year of the empire of Octavian Augustus, when the whole earth was at peace, in the sixth age of the world, Jesus Christ, eternal God, and Son of the eternal Father, desirous to sanctify the world by His most merciful coming, having been conceived of the Holy Ghost, and nine months having elapsed since his conception, is born in Bethlehem of Juda, having become man of the Virgin Mary. 

THE NATIVITY OF OUR LORD JESUS CHRIST, ACCORDING TO THE FLESH
 
The same day, the birthday of St. Anastasia, who, in the time of Diocletian, first suffered a severe and harsh imprisonment on the part of her husband Publius, in which, however, she was much consoled and encouraged by the confessor of Christ, Chrysogonus. Afterwards she was thrown into prison again by order of Florus, prefect of Illyria; and finally, having her hands and feet stretched out, she was tied to stakes, with a fire kindled about her, in the midst of which she ended her martyrdom in the island of Palmarola, whither she had been conveyed with two hundred men and seventy women, who have made martyrdom a glorious thing by the various kinds of death they so courageously endured. 

At Rome, in the cemetery of Apronian, St. Eugenia, virgin. In the time of the emperor Gallienus, after working many miracles and gathering to Christ troops of sacred virgins, and after long combats under Nicetius, prefect of the city, she was finally put to the sword. 

At Nicomedia, many thousand martyrs, who had assembled for divine service on our Lord's Nativity, when the emperor Diocletian, ordering the doors of the Church to be closed, and fire to be kindled here and there, as also a vessel with incense to be put before the entrance, and a man to cry out that those who wished to escape from the conflagration should come out and burn incense to Jupiter, all with one voice answered that they preferred to die for Christ. They were consumed in the fire, and thus merited to be born in Heaven on the day on which Christ vouchsafed to be born on Earth for the salvation of the world. 

At Barcelona, in Spain, the birthday of St. Peter Nolasco, confessor, and founder of the Order of Mercedarians, renowned for virtue and miracles. His feast is celebrated on the 31st of January, by order of Alexander VII.


And elsewhere in divers places, many other holy martyrs, confessors, and holy virgins.

On This Christmas Eve

I would be true, for there are those who trust me;
I would be pure, for there are those who care;
I would be strong, for there is much to suffer;
I would be brave, for there is much to dare;
I would be brave, for there is much to dare.

I would be friend of all--the foe, the friendless;
I would be giving, and forget the gift;
I would be humble, for I know my weakness;
I would look up, and laugh, and love and lift.
I would look up, and laugh, and love and lift.

I would be faithful through each passing moment;
I would be constantly in touch with God;
I would be strong to follow where He leads me;
I would have faith to keep the path Christ trod;
I would have faith to keep the path Christ trod.


--Howard Arnold Walter, 1906




23 December 2016

Cardinal Burke, We Have Your Back


As we approach the blessed and joyous feast of Our Saviour's Birth, it is unseemly to have to post about the current, ominous "investigation" into the Knights of Malta.  

But I do so to ensure that Cardinal Burke is fairly represented and that his supporters know that whatever may appear in the mainstream or Vatican-directed press, there is ample reason to remain steadfast. 

We cannot know for sure, of course, that Cardinal Burke is being targeted for retribution by the thugs of the Amoris Laetitia cabal oozing about the Vatican, but it sure smells. If retribution it is, remember it is for standing to witness for Christ Himself. For asking the pope to uphold the Church's teaching.

Anyway, Lifesite News posted this article, informing the faithful that the Grand Master of the Knights of Malta asked an official of the Knights to resign after learning this person was overseeing the distribution of contraceptives while in his post with the Knights. When thus confronted, he refused to resign and thus was sacked. This action of the leader of the Knights was supported by Cardinal Burke.  

That's the story as reported.

If true, then not only would a Vatican-ordered discipline of Cardinal Buke reek of retribution for the Dubia, but it would require Francis to side with a person who violated his own oath of obedience to the order, and who, in violation of Church teaching, was acting in the name of a Catholic order to distribute gravely immoral items to the poorest of the poor.

For the record.

Merry Christmas-- I'm still praying for a Christmas miracle that Francis will uphold the faith and not break it over his pride.

And for the record, knowing that this blog has the reach of a gnat's arm, and for regardless of what good it will do, I want to say that if anyone comes after Cardinal Burke unjustly, I will make it my business to oppose him and to rally anyone in my reach to his defense.


22 December 2016

The Hits Just Keep Coming: Francis Orders Investigation of Knights of Malta

I forget-- who is the Cardinal Patron of the Knights?  Oh yeah, Raymond Leo Cardinal Burke. But don't worry, this is only looking into possible abuse of power by the Grand Master in a personnel decision

Right. I am confident that information is accurate. After all, why else would the Knights come under papal scrutiny just now?

Remember Fr. Manelli of the FFI?

It's all too confusing for me.

Mother Miriam's Community Told to Leave Tulsa Diocese by New Bishop

Very sad news, though Mother Miriam (you may remember her in her previous "life" as Rosalind Moss, the noted Catholic apologist) will take it for what it is-- part of God's plan for her order.  This hits home to me, as Mother Miriam has always been so kind to me and so encouraging about this blog. I remember her periodic visits to St. Francis de Sales with joy.  

And now this. Well, friends, the wheels they are a-turning. Keep the faith in charity and be hopeful until they stop. Then we will see if Our Lord is not on top.

Weird. Why Did I Have to Read This in the Foreign Press?

Electoral college "rebels" who wanted to dump Trump were in contact with Clinton campaign officials.

December 2016 Comes Right Before 2017


For the Fatima file, a snapshot of US-Russian relations right now. As Our Lady indicated, Russia will be our chastisement or our deliverance; who knows, maybe both?

Since Vaticanisti Love Lord of the Rings Quotes

"The Company of the Dubia shall be Four, and the Four Cardinals shall be set against the Four Henchmen that are evil."








21 December 2016

If a pope were to "formally profess heresy he would cease, by that act, to be the Pope"

Let that sink in.

A cardinal of the Catholic Church has now said publicly, as a fact, what has been written about, speculated about, reasoned about, by theologians and saints for hundreds of years.

The end of the proposed adultery and communion game in Amoris Laetitia will end before it begins.

By definition. 

There will be a recantation, orthodox "clarification", or this:


If a pope were to "formally profess heresy he would cease, by that act, to be the Pope".

19 December 2016

"We intend to serve th[e] truth no matter what it takes."

And all of us in the Church who are cardinals, bishops, we have the responsibility to defend the truth; whether we seem to be numerous or we seem to be very few doesn’t make any difference. It’s the truth of Christ which has to be taught.-- Raymond Cardinal Burke

Hello again, nice to be with you after a longer break than I expected. As usual, the hiatus puts me at the back end of commenting on the most important news of the month-- and I don't mean the electoral college.

No, the news of the month concerns a different college, the College of Cardinals--  and much, much more. I mean the spectacular and portentous interview by Raymond Arroyo of EWTN of Raymond Cardinal Burke.  Lifesite News has a great article summarizing it, and is good enough to also provide the entire transcript of the interview at the bottom of the story.  It is from and upon the interview that I intend to quote and comment.

The subject of the interview of course is the debacle of Amoris Laetitia and the dubia of the Four Cardinals seeking clarity-- hopefully but not expectedly Catholic clarity-- from Pope Francis. Arroyo and His Eminence establish quite well in this interview that a) the Cardinals are serious; b) their dubia have not been answered by any word or action from Francis or his cadre of creepy toadies before or since its publication; c) yes, the Cardinals will be forced to take corrective action should His Holiness not uphold the unchangeable teaching of Christ and His Church; d) His Eminence gives an indication for what that correction will be; and, e) most importantly, His Eminence clarifies just what a schism is and what it is not-- to the extent that AL or the dubia involve a schism, those who are standing for Christ are not the schismatics. And if anything, the Cardinals are highlighting and opposing a schism that is already there.

If you have not already done so, please, please read the entire interview. Stuff's getting real.  Three Qs & As serve to encapsulate the whole:


Raymond Arroyo: Father Antonio Spadaro who is a very close collaborator with the pope—in fact, he’s his ghost writer on a lot of these documents—he has really become the vanguard of taking down the critics of Amoris Laetitia or anyone who would even question the thinking here or the doctrine that’s implied through these pastoral adjustments. Spadaro said, and I quote, and I think he’s talking about you, that these questions, the dubia that you presented to the Holy Father, is an attempt to ramp up the tension and create division within the Church. Is that what you’re trying to do?


Cardinal Burke: No. In fact, we’re trying to address the division which is already very much ramped up, to use his phrase. Everywhere I go…many faithful, priests and bishops, and lay faithful, [with] whom I speak are in a state of very serious confusion on this matter. Priests tell me that one priest is telling the faithful one thing in Confession, other priest another thing. Only when these questions, which we have raised according to the traditional manner of resolving questions in the Church which have to do with very serious matters, only when these questions are adequately answered will the division be dissipated. But as is happening right now, as long as this continues, the division will only grow and of course the fruit of division is error. And here we’re talking about the salvation of souls, people being led into error in matters which have to do with their eternal salvation. And so Father Spadaro is very much in error in that affirmation.

[...]

Raymond Arroyo: Your Eminence, many of the pope’s supporters and your critics have said he’s already answered your questions when he embraced the implementation plan of Amoris Laetitia of those bishops in Buenos Aires. In it, they said you don’t need an annulment and those who are divorced and remarried with the accompaniment of their pastor in certain cases can come forward and receive Communion. And the pope said, ‘This is exactly as it should be.’ What’s wrong with that? Didn’t he already answer your question?


Cardinal Burke: Not at all. He’s given his own opinion on the matter. The question can only be answered in terms of what the Church has always taught and practiced, as for instance is illustrated in the book which was published for the 2014 synod Remaining in the Truth of Christ. And it’s one thing [for] the pope can say what is written in Amoris Laetitia is interpreted correctly to mean that an individual priest can permit someone who’s in an irregular matrimonial union to receive the Sacraments without a firm purpose of amendment, but that doesn’t resolve the question. The question is, what does the Church teach? It’s not a matter of…some speculative idea I may have about how to approach these questions, but how does Christ in His Church address such questions? That’s, until that answer is provided, we remain in a confused state.

[...]


Raymond Arroyo: In our final moments, I have to raise this. I was sort of struck, amazed really, at an interview the Holy Father gave where he suggested that those who are ‘rigid’—and that’s the term he uses…sort of locked in their ‘rigidity’ over doctrine and otherwise, that they suffer from a compulsion or a condition. Your reaction to that, and what are you and these your fellow cardinals do if you don’t get a positive reaction from the Holy Father and say, some answer on this point of clarification?


Cardinal Burke: Well, first of all, we—our presentation of the five questions is done with great serenity and with great respect. They are not the reactions of people who are suffering from emotional disorders. That we’re very deeply concerned about the truth of the doctrine of the faith and its integrity is not a sign of illness. What will we do? We have to continue to serve the truth with charity and so especially those of us who are cardinals, who are the principal advisors of the Holy Father, have a very solemn obligation to defend the Church from these kind of attacks at her very foundation. I mean, we have to remember that we’re talking about teaching about marriage and its fruit, the family, and to attack that teaching is to destabilize the whole Church and society in general. And so the responsibility is very great and we certainly—I only can speak for myself, but I know from my fellow cardinals who have been involved with me—we intend to serve that truth no matter what it takes. I, for my part, will never be part of a schism. I’m a Roman Catholic and defending the Roman Catholic faith is not the cause of my being separated from the Church. And so I simply intend to continue to defend the faith out of love for Our Lord and for the, his mystical body, my brothers and sisters in the Church, and I believe the other cardinals are of the same mind.

If I can briefly summarize Cardinal Burke, I would say that unless the pope himself answers the dubia in a formal way adhering to the Catholic Faith, then after a certain point the Four Cardinals will correct him, at once for heresy or later for failing to do his job in defending the faith. Then, a crisis of sorts will be precipitated. The pope may react with discipline, or he may remain silent (officially, that is-- he seems not to be capable of refraining from insults) until his end. Whether now or after his death, the Church will be forced to repudiate his teachings. Open schism lurks, but that will forced by those who embrace heresy.

The Four Cardinals will not back down, Burke says-- they stand for Christ and "intend to serve that truth no matter what it takes."

Interesting times. God bless the Four Cardinals, and may he soften Francis' heart to the truth.

BREAKING NEWS!

Bill Clinton admits he voted for Donald Trump.

15 December 2016

Thanks for Your Patience

Lots and lots of work, and also seasonal doings, have prevented regular blogging. Back at it tomorrow.

09 December 2016

Scat Cat and His Band of Alley Cats

I only wish I were referring to the Disney semi-classic The Aristocats.  But the photoshopped horror (PUBLISHED BY VATICAN RADIO AND NOT SOME IDIOTIC LOCAL CATHOLIC BLOG) of Francis as Martin Luther is creeping me out, especially after the pope's unfortunate and bizarre poop comments. I can't believe this is happening...

Well, leave it to better students of history than yours truly to note the unsettling similarity between Luther and the first pope to claim he had a good point after all-- they talk about the scat:

Is it a coincidence that Martin Luther too had a preoccupation with feces? It was he who penned such gems as “I am ripe s---, so is the world a great wide a--hole; eventually we will part” and “I have shat in my pants and breeches; hang them on your neck and wipe your mouth with them.” (There is more here if you are interested). And it was Saint Thomas More who wrote of Luther that “he conceives nothing in his head other than stupidities, rages and insanities; [and] has nothing in his mouth other than sewers, sh-- and dung—with which he plays the buffoon more filthily and obscenely than any actual buffoon ever did.”

As Maureen Mullarkey has written regarding this stercoraceous eruption from the mouth of Mount Bergoglio: “This pontificate is a cornucopia of last straws.” Indeed, take your pick. Damian Thompson, protesting “the Pope’s bizarre rant about eating faeces” over at The Spectator, notes the widening disillusionment with this calamitous papacy before concluding: “The Pope turns 80 this month. A surprising number of Catholics are wondering whether this might not be an appropriate moment for him to retire. Count me among them.”

But Rod Dreher best captures the essence of the problem. In a blog post entitled “Poop Talk with Pope Francis,” he delivers this devastating one-liner: “The Vicar of Christ, ladies and gentlemen.”


Francis is determined to bring the papacy down to his level, and the whole Church along with it. To the extent humanly possible, the Church has become his plaything. The result is at once a demonstration of the power and the peril of the papacy.


08 December 2016

Tota Pulchra Es

Today is the great Feast of the Immaculate Conception of the Blessed Virgin Mary, amazingly still considered an actual, all-day, Sunday-through-Saturday Holy Day of Obligation. If you have not yet heard Mass today, consider the 6:30pm Solemn High Mass at St. Francis de Sales Oratory.

As Mary, the Immaculate Conception, is the primary patroness of the Institute of Christ the King Sovereign Priest, the faithful who assist at Mass at an Institute apostolate may obtain a plenary indulgence, under the usual conditions.


Daily Consecration of the Institute of Christ the King Sovereign Priest to the Blessed Virgin Mary 

In the presence of God Almighty, Father, Son, and Holy Ghost, and with heaven and earth as our witness, we prostrate ourselves at thy feet, O Mary, Our Lady. 

We acknowledge Thee as our Mother, as the Immaculate Conception, living tabernacle of the Divinity, as Queen of angels and of men, as Mother of the Church and of the Catholic priesthood, and as refuge of the afflicted. That is why, small and weak that we are, we wish to consecrate to Thee our Institute, our families, our persons, our works, our future, all that pertains to us and is in us, and which God, in His immeasurable goodness, has entrusted to us for our good use.

We also consecrate to Thee the value of our good actions, past, present, and future, leaving to Thee the entire and full right of disposing of us and all that belongs to us. Mary, be our Mother; sanctify us, purify us, correct us, guide us, pray for us and protect us.

Help us to perfectly fulfill the duties of our state of life. Extinguish in us all self-love, which prevents Thy Divine Son, King and Sovereign Priest, from reigning in and around us.


Cover abundantly with thy maternal protection all the parishes, chapels, schools, works and missions entrusted to the Institute, and mayest Thou forever impede the devil from reigning, in any manner, in this Institute which desires to be entirely Thine for the greater glory of God, the exaltation of our Mother the Holy Catholic Church, and for the conversion of sinners. Amen.



07 December 2016

I Can't Wait to Read This One

"Justice is a big rug. When you pull it out from under one man, a lot of others fall too."

--Dorothy Kilgallen

One of the benefits of being married to the best woman in Christendom is being deprived of cable and satellite television. What's that, you say? Yes, my beloved wife Sharon does not believe in spending money on television. I can spend money on whiskey, bubble gum, books, trips, jewels, binoculars, and the head of a mule, but not on television.

This sacrifice I make to marital harmony (and no doubt to the betterment of my soul and the souls of my children) has one great material benefit: my lazy, TV-watching self has to take what comes over the old antenna. In this way I see stuff I would never take the time to see. 

This reality is a mixed bag, to be sure. For instance, a few years ago I became a regular viewer of the '80s dreck Knight Rider. I snapped out of it soon enough. But, on the other hand, I was fascinated by a local PBS show about St. Louis brick-making companies in the early 20th Century. Sad to say, I couldn't look away.

All this leads me to the inimitable Dorothy Kilgallen. Not having cable, I don't get the Game Show Network. I get the cheap, antenna-TV knock-off Buzzr, which sometimes comes in if the antenna is positioned justright. On this network, late at night, one may see the classic, horribly-preserved-on-film game show, What's My Line?.

One thing that some annoying and ignorant critics say of we rigid, traditional Catholics is that we hanker to a mythical, halcyon day of goodness and decency that never actually existed. I defy you to watch What's My Line? and tell me that class, decency, good manners and intelligence have not practically disappeared in the last fifty years. The panelists, host and guests of this show are witty, urbane, and cultured. It is a joy to watch. For one moment, compare this show to the current, Steve Harvey iteration of Family Feud. Do it. You now have an encapsulation of the fall of Western Civilization.

So, having had the joy to watch What's My Line?, I have developed an after-the-fact fascination and fandom for the late, great Dorothy Kilgallen. She is a personification of wit, wisdom, charm and social grace. She was a television star at the beginning of the so-called golden age of television.  Yet Dorothy Kilgallen was not an actress of stage or screen-- she was a newspaper reporter, and a good one at that. 

Kilgallen's success as a woman in a field where women were rarely seen (and please, I am no lefty-feminist, so I'm not going too far with this) was proof of the quality of her work. Tough as nails. Chicago-born, New York educated. Irish. Catholic. 

Her life was tragically and suspiciously cut short. She died in 1965 due to ethanol and barbituate poisoning. Yet, this cause of death might have been a Hillary-style deal, because there is nothing in her background that suggested addiction. She was not considered depressed, let along suicidal. Yet suicide or accidental overdose was the cursory conclusion, and likely you have never heard about her in any context apart from the game show.

So, was she murdered? And why in the world would anyone want to murder her?  

Let's see. What story was she investigating before her death?

The JFK assassination. And when Kilgallen was on a story, she followed it to the end. To the truth. Just saying.

I am very much looking forward to reading The Reporter Who Knew Too Much, by Mark Shaw.