Monday, January 22, 2018

The Source Of The Problem


 In the more than four years that I have been regularly posting on this blog each week, I have communicated with all kinds of ersatz "Traditionalists." While the large majority of my readers are good people trying to be loyal to the Church in this age of near universal apostasy, there nevertheless remain those that exemplify what was meant by the prophet Zechariah when he wrote, "Strike the shepherd, and the sheep shall be scattered..." In a time of prolonged sedevacantism, people go far astray without a true pope. I have thought quite a bit about the unusual groups that have emerged posing as faithful Traditionalist Catholics in the wake of Vatican II. I have identified the basic groups and what I believe is the underlying source of the problem. Despite their claims that they are the true remnant, most wind up placing themselves outside the One True Church. First, the groups:


  • Feeneyites: Those who deny Baptism of Blood (BOB) and Baptism of Desire (BOD), the most infamous of whom are the phony "Benedictine" brothers, Fred and Bobby Dimond of New York's Most Holy Family "Monastery." 
  • Vacancy Pushers: This is the term I have coined for those who not only reject the "papacy" of Roncalli (John XXIII)  up to Bergoglio (Francis), but "push back the date of the vacancy" by denying the authenticity of pre-Vatican II popes. They accomplish this by digging up some obscure quote from an encyclical or some other papal document of a prior pope, twist it out of context, and declare him an "antipope." There are three main groups; those who, like Michael Bizzaro, declare Pope St. Pius X (d. 1914) as the last pope; those who recognize Pope Pius IX (d. 1878) as the last pope; and the followers of cult leader Richard Ibranyi of New Mexico, who have the last pope as being Pope Honorius II (d. 1130 AD!).
  • Recognize and Resistors: Those who recognize all Vatican II "popes" yet feel free to decide when, how, and if they will obey them. (Groups like the Society of St. Pius X [SSPX] and Bp. Williamson's St. Marcel Initiative, and the notorious Bergoglio-defenders,Robert Siscoe and John Salza). 
  • Apparitionists: People who exalt private revelations and apparitions whether approved by the Church (such as Our Lady of Fatima) or not (such as Our Lady of the Roses) over the teaching of the Church. They obsess over the alleged "true meanings" of messages (as if salvation depended on them), or even accept them to the exclusion of authentic Church doctrines in some area(s). The late "Fr." Gruner falls squarely in this category. 
  • Home Aloners: Like an ecclesiastical version of the 1990 movie, these poor souls think that you cannot go to any Traditionalist priest, but must remain "home alone" without the Mass or sacraments because no one (according to them) has been properly "sent" by the Church. As a consequence, Traditionalist clergy allegedly have no authority to offer Mass and administer the sacraments. 
  • Conclavists: The men and women who believe that, like in the case of David Bawden ("Pope" Michael), you can run a "conclave" with your mommy, daddy, two nice neighbors, and a self-anointed female "theologian" as "electors" on a Kansas farm, thereby producing a "pope." Some Conclavists, like the Palmar de Troya cult, claim "divine intervention," as when Clemente Dominguez said Christ Himself appeared to him in a vision and declared he would become pope upon the death of Montini ("Pope" Paul VI). 
  • Science Deniers: My term for those who think that in order to preserve the faith, they must deny modern science. You must believe that the Earth is exactly 6,000 years old, and/or Earth is the center of the universe. They treat these opinions as "dogma." It is the opposite of some atheists who think that to preserve science you must deny God.   

To make matters more confusing, there are more groups, but these are the vast majority out there. Some people are not easy to pigeon-hole because they can fall into more than one group, such as the former Protestant minister, Gerry Matatics, who used to be both a Feeneyite and a Home Aloner, but is now just Home Alone giving "courses" regarding every subject under the sun on Facebook. You could also be a Science-Denier and a Vacancy Pusher, or an Apparitionist and a Conclavist.

So what's causing these pseudo-Traditionalist groups? All of them either do not understand, or willfully reject, the Magisterium of the Church. As a result, they get things seriously wrong, and most place themselves outside the Church. The purpose of this post will be, therefore, to give a proper exposition of what the Magisterium really is, and what we must believe. I will also answer common objections to the proper role of the Church's Magisterium. In so doing, I will also point out how some groups got it wrong. Nothing that will be written below is mine; I take credit for nothing. It is the teaching of the One True Church Herself. It is my hope that by understanding the teaching authority of the Church, you will never fall into these errors, and maybe this post will give you the ammunition necessary to rescue friends and family that have, unfortunately, fallen victim to them.

The Magisterium

1. What is the Magisterium? According to theologian Parente, it is "the power conferred by Christ upon His Church and strengthened with the charism of infallibility, by which the teaching Church (Ecclesia docens) is constituted as the unique depository and authentic interpreter of divine revelation to be proposed authoritatively to men as the object of faith for their eternal salvation." (See Dictionary of Dogmatic Theology, The Bruce Publishing Company, Milwaukee, [1951], pg. 170). Therefore, the Church is divinely appointed to teach all necessary truths of faith to people, free from error, in order that they may attain Heaven. "Magisterium" comes from the Latin magister or "teacher." Christ told His Apostles "Go therefore, teach ye all nations..."(St. Matthew 28:19). 

2. What constitutes the Magisterium? According to theologian Van Noort: "The subject-matter of divine- Catholic faith are all those truths proposed by the Church's Magisterium for our belief as divinely revealed...The principle laid down above is contained almost verbatim in this declaration of the [First] Vatican Council: 'Further, all those things are to be believed with divine and catholic faith which are contained in the Word of God, written or handed down, and which the Church, either by a solemn judgment, or by her ordinary and universal Magisterium, proposes for belief as having been Divinely-revealed.' [Dogmatic Constitution on the Catholic Faith]" (See Dogmatic Theology, Newman Press 3:220-221[1960]; words in brackets and emphasis are mine). 

The Magisterium, therefore, is expressed either solemnly or in an ordinary and universal way. This is clear from both Church history and the dogmatic decree of the First Vatican Council (1870).  The former exercise of the Church's teaching authority is called the Solemn or Extraordinary Magisterium and the latter is called the Universal and Ordinary Magisterium ("UOM"). Both are equally infallible

3. The Extraordinary Magisterium. As theologian Van Noort writes, the Extraordinary Magisterium is comprised of: "(a) definitions made by the pope speaking ex cathedra; (b) definitions made by particular councils which have either been ratified by the pope in solemn form, or accepted by the universal Church. The term 'definition' covers creeds and professions of faith which have been edited or solemnly approved by the supreme Magisterium of the Church." (Ibid, pg. 221). However, this is not the usual way the Church teaches us, hence it is called "extraordinary." The purpose of infallible definitions made solemnly is to confirm what has already been taught by the UOM when brought under attack by heretics. For example, the heresiarch Arius was already considered a heretic for denying the Divinity of Christ (taught by the UOM) before the solemn definitions at the Ecumenical Council of Nicea in 325 A.D.  Martin Luther was likewise considered a heretic for denying the Mass was a real Sacrifice, and teaching justification by faith alone, before the condemnations of the Ecumenical Council of Trent. Exactly what, then, is the UOM?

4. The Universal and Ordinary Magisterium Explained. According to theologian Scheeben, "The Criteria, or means of knowing Catholic truth may be easily gathered from the principles...nearly all set forth in the Brief Tuas Libenter, addressed by Pius IX to the Archbishop of Munich." (See A Manual of Catholic Theology 1:89). Pope Pius IX wrote, ""For even if it were a matter concerning that subjection which is to be manifested by an act of divine faith, nevertheless, it would not have to be limited to those matters which have been defined by express decrees of the ecumenical Councils, or of the Roman Pontiffs and of this See, but would have to be extended also to those matters which are handed down as divinely revealed by the ordinary teaching power of the whole Church spread throughout the world, and therefore, by universal and common consent are held by Catholic theologians to belong to faith." Pope Pius IX, Tuas Libenter (1863),DZ 1683 (Emphasis mine)

Again the Supreme Pontiff writes, "But, since it is a matter of that subjection by which in conscience all those Catholics are bound who work in the speculative sciences, in order that they may bring new advantage to the Church by their writings, on that account, then, the men of that same convention should realize that it is not sufficient for learned Catholics to accept and revere the aforesaid dogmas of the Church, but that
it is also necessary to subject themselves to the decisions pertaining to doctrine which are issued by the Pontifical Congregations, and also to those forms of doctrine which are held by the common and constant consent of Catholics as theological truths and conclusions, so certain that opinions opposed to these same forms of doctrine, although they cannot be called heretical, nevertheless deserve some theological censure." Tuas Libenter (1863), DZ 1684.

 Van Noort explains: "Clearly if a truth is capable of being declared an object of divine-catholic faith through the force of this ordinary and universal teaching, there is required such a proposal is unmistakably definitive........The major signs of such a proposal are these: that the truth be taught throughout the world in popular catechisms, or even more importantly, be taught by the universal and constant agreement of theologians as belonging to faith." (Van Noort, Ibid, pg. 222; Emphasis mine). 

Canon 1323 of the 1917 Code of Canon Law further gives proof of the belief of the Church regarding the UOM and imposes on the faithful the obligation of consent. The eminent canonist Augustine writes, "The universal and ordinary Magisterium consists of the entire episcopate, according to the constitution and order defined by Christ, i.e., all the bishops of the universal Church, dependently on the Roman Pontiff...What the universal and approved practice and discipline proposes as connected with faith and morals must be believed. And what the Holy Fathers and the theologians hold unanimously as a matter of faith and morals, is also de fide." (See A Commentary on Canon Law, pg.327)

Finally, a great summary by theologian Scheeben, "Although the assistance of the Holy Ghost is not directly promised to theologians, nevertheless the assistance promised to the Church requires that He should prevent them as a body from falling into error; otherwise the Faithful who follow them would all be lead astray. The consent of the theologians implies the consent of the Episcopate, according to St. Augustine's dictum, 'Not to resist an error is to approve of it---not to defend a truth is to reject it.'" (Scheeben, Ibid, pg. 83). 

Remember, too, what constitutes an "approved theologian": Clerics of eminent learning, and orthodoxy in doctrine, at least as insofar their writings are used by the faithful and in seminaries, with the knowledge of (and with no opposition from) the hierarchy and the Holy See. (See, e.g,. theologian Salaverri, Sacrae Theologiae Summa, IB, [1955]). 

The Two Errors Inherent in the Pseudo-Traditionalist Groups

I) Reject all teaching except infallible pronouncements from popes and Ecumenical Councils. Here, they jettison most Church teaching. They even (ironically) reject the infallible pronouncement of the First Vatican Council that the UOM is infallible! This is akin to ripping out more than half the pages of a book and expecting to get the story correct. It's not happening.

II) Only accept those infallible pronouncements from the popes and Ecumenical Councils according to their private interpretations, and reject the teaching of the approved theologians which is how the Church teaches us through Her Universal and Ordinary Magisterium, as infallibly defined at the Vatican Council (1870).Theology, like law or medicine, is a science. As such, it is handled by professionals trained and overseen by Holy Mother Church. A layman attempting to interpret a dogma is like a non-physician trying to "diagnose himself" on WebMD or a non-lawyer attempting to defend himself in court. Would you want to entrust your possible loss of liberty to a non-lawyer's advice? Would you let a non-surgeon operate on you and risk death? Of course, no rational person would do this, yet some Traditionalists will risk their eternal salvation by trusting in wannabe "Benedictines" with no formal ecclesiastical education and training, or a "pope" who was "elected" by his parents on their Kansas farm.

Objections Answered

  • Theologians are not infallible. Yes, individual theologians can be in error, but not as a corporate body. What kind of teaching authority would that be? It is blasphemous to suggest that Christ's One True Church could allow error to go unchecked for almost two millennium, as in the case of BOD and BOB. The Church would have defected, but this is impossible. St. Alphonsus Liguori and St. Thomas Aquinas taught both the absolute necessity of water baptism and BOD/BOB. This would imply that two of the greatest theologians and Doctors of the Church--brilliant men--were contradicting themselves in their own writings if what the Feeneyites teach is true. This smacks of a mental disorder being attributed to two of the greatest saints in Church history. Notice too, the hypocrisy and irrationality of the Dimond brothers who state that these saints made "innocent mistakes" regarding BOD and BOB, yet everyone else who believes it is of bad will and damned to Hell. Consider the countless popes and saintly bishops and priests who scrutinized the works of Aquinas and Liguori for hundreds of years. Their works were especially scrutinized for heresy and error when they were considered for canonization and again when being considered for the title of "Doctor of the Church." Yet not one pope, bishop, or priest caught the "innocent mistake" until an excommunicated Jesuit from Boston came along in the 20th century. Please.
  • We only need to believe infallible teachings of the popes and Ecumenical Councils. The Church has condemned this very idea. Condemned proposition #22 of the Syllabus of Errors, addressed to the whole Church teaches, "22. The obligation by which Catholic teachers and writers are absolutely bound is restricted to those matters only which are proposed by the infallible judgement of the Church, to be believed by all as dogmas of the faith." Pope Pius VI in Auctorem Fidei, 1794, condemns: ''...the Church, governed by the Holy Spirit, could impose a disciplinary law that would be not only useless and more burdensome for the faithful than Christian liberty allows, but also dangerous and harmful."  Pope Gregory XVI in Quo Graviora (1833) states, "The Church is the pillar and foundation of truth, all of which truth is taught by the Holy Spirit. Should the Church be able to order, yield to, or permit those things which tend toward the destruction of souls and the disgrace and detriment of the sacrament instituted by Christ?" Pope Pius XII condemns the idea popes need not be given assent in their teachings that are not ex cathedra: "It is not to be thought that what is set down in Encyclical Letters does not demand assent in itself, because in these the popes do not exercise the supreme powers of their Magisterium. For these matters are taught by the ordinary magisterium, regarding which the following is pertinent ‘He who heareth you, heareth me.’; and usually what is set forth and inculcated in Encyclical Letters, already pertains to Catholic doctrine." (Humani Generis [1950]).  Hence, not adhereing to this principle, "recognize and resist" folks can claim Bergoglio is pope because he was "not speaking infallibly" when he allowed adulterers to receive the Novus Bogus "communion" or Wojtyla was not infallibly speaking when he wrote Ut Unam Sint. It is impossible for the pope to approve that which is erroneous or evil. You must either accept what they do, or reject their claim to the papacy! 
  •  The information on the UOM is incorrect. No, I cited the infallible teaching of Vatican Council I (1870), and the Code of Canon Law which was promulgated by Pope Benedict XV. The Church is infallible in Her universal disciplinary laws, such as the Code. The approved theologians likewise echo what the Council and the Code teach regarding the UOM. 
  • You reject the popes from John XXIII to Francis, so we can apply the same rule to past popes and reject them. No, you are not "applying the same rule." I reject Vatican II and its so-called "popes" based on the complete irreconcilable ecclesiology taught pre- and post- Vatican II. Everyone realized something was seriously wrong (or at least very different) in the aftermath of Vatican II. No pope or theologian taught that non-Catholic sects are a "means of salvation" as did Vatican II. As a matter of fact, the exact opposite was taught. The errors were notorious and ubiquitous; there for all to see and the rejection of Roncalli to Bergoglio is based on the loss of papal office taught by the theologians. This is not the same as claiming, e.g. Pope Pius IX was the last pope because of some obscure quote pulled out of context written by Pope Leo XIII which allegedly makes him a "heretic." There was no huge movement claiming the Church had changed from Pope Pius IX to Pope Leo XIII, who kept Tradition intact, condemned Freemasonry, and declared Anglican orders invalid. To say otherwise is just plain false. 
  • We must elect our own pope right away to end this confusion. Easier said than done. I agree that we need to work towards such a state of affairs, but that's very different from having your mommy, daddy, and some nice neighbors "elect you to the papacy." It has all the validity that should come with a tinfoil tiara. 
Conclusion
 The Feeneyites, and the other pseudo-Traditionalist groups suffer from what a friend of mine called a "sickness of soul." I agree. The sickness comes from a rejection of the authentic Magisterium. They fall into every imaginable error and, unfortunately, make Traditionalists look strange (at best) and deranged (at worst). Almost all of them (with very few exceptions) are uncharitable boors. I could retire a wealthy man right now if I had a dime for every time they resort to ad hominem attacks calling me (and anyone else who does not agree with every jot and tittle they profess) "liars," "apostates," etc. Then again, when you don't have facts or logic on your side, name-calling is all that's left to do. Please remember how the Church teaches us, and avoid the source of the problem that makes you "Traditionalist Catholic" in name only. 

Monday, January 15, 2018

The Center Of Attention


Prayer is the raising of the mind and heart to God. Unfortunately, for some members of the Vatican II sect, prayer is going deep within yourself! Many parishes, schools, and retreats of the sect push what is known as "centering prayer," which is defined as a technique that concentrates on emptying the mind of thought through the repetition of a single word, known as a mantra. If this sounds pagan to you, that's because it is based on Eastern pagan religions, and is being taught to the unsuspecting as a form of "Christian contemplation." The truth and dangers regarding centering prayer will be explored in this post.

Apostate Priest of Eastern Mysticism

 The leading proponent of centering prayer is one Fr. Thomas Keating. Born in 1923, Keating entered an austere Trappist monastery in 1944, and was ordained to the holy priesthood in June of 1949. He was the abbot of St. Joseph's Monastery in Spencer, Massachusetts from 1961 until his retirement in 1981. According to Fr. Keating's own website:

During Fr. Keating's term as abbot at St. Joseph's and in response to the reforms of Vatican II, he invited teachers from the East to the monastery. As a result of this exposure to Eastern spiritual traditions, Fr. Keating and several of the monks at St. Joseph's were led to develop the modern form of Christian contemplative prayer called Centering Prayer. Fr. Keating was a central figure in the initiation of the Centering Prayer movement. He offered Centering Prayer workshops and retreats to clergy and laypeople and authored articles and books on the method and fruits of Centering Prayer. In 1983, he presented a two-week intensive Centering Prayer retreat at the Lama Foundation in San Cristabol, New Mexico, which proved to be a watershed event. Many of the people prominent in the Centering Prayer movement today attended this retreat. Contemplative Outreach was created in 1984 to support the growing spiritual network of Centering Prayer practitioners. Fr. Keating became the community's president in 1985, a position he held until 1999.

Fr. Keating is an internationally renowned theologian and an accomplished author. He has traveled the world to speak with laypeople and communities about contemplative Christian practices and the psychology of the spiritual journey, which is the subject of his Spiritual Journey video and DVD series. Since the reforms of Vatican II, Fr. Keating has been a core participant in and supporter of interreligious dialogue. He helped found the Snowmass Interreligious Conference, which had its first meeting in the fall of 1983 and continues to meet each spring. Fr. Keating also is a past president of the Temple of Understanding and of the Monastic Interreligious Dialogue.

Perhaps the biggest testament to Fr. Keating's dedication to reviving Christian contemplative practices is his choice to live a busy, public life instead of the quiet, monastic life for which he entered the monastery. Fr. Keating's life is lived in the service of sharing the gifts God gave him with others.

The site also states, In the 1970s, answering the call of Vatican II, three Trappist monks at St. Joseph's Abbey in Spencer, Massachusetts, Fathers William Meninger, Basil Pennington and Thomas Keating, looked to these ancient sources to develop a simple method of silent prayer for contemporary people.

(See http://www.contemplativeoutreach.org; Emphasis mine).

Centering prayer, therefore, has its roots in pagan religion and Vatican II; most notably that robber council's damnable declaration Nostra Aetate ("The Relation of the Church to Non-Christian Religions"). In paragraph #2 it states:

Thus in Hinduism, men contemplate the divine mystery and express it through an inexhaustible abundance of myths and through searching philosophical inquiry. They seek freedom from the anguish of our human condition either through ascetical practices or profound meditation or a flight to God with love and trust. Again, Buddhism, in its various forms, realizes the radical insufficiency of this changeable world; it teaches a way by which men, in a devout and confident spirit, may be able either to acquire the state of perfect liberation, or attain, by their own efforts or through higher help, supreme illumination. Likewise, other religions found everywhere try to counter the restlessness of the human heart, each in its own manner, by proposing "ways," comprising teachings, rules of life, and sacred rites. The Catholic Church rejects nothing that is true and holy in these religions. She regards with sincere reverence those ways of conduct and of life, those precepts and teachings which, though differing in many aspects from the ones she holds and sets forth, nonetheless often reflect a ray of that Truth which enlightens all men. Indeed, she proclaims, and ever must proclaim Christ "the way, the truth, and the life" (John 14:6), in whom men may find the fullness of religious life, in whom God has reconciled all things to Himself. (Emphasis mine).

 This is another example of the heretical ecclesiology of Vatican II. All religions contain some "ray of Truth" (often referred to as "elements of truth") and are to be "respected." The Church of Christ ( heretically considered distinct from the Catholic Church) is present "partially" in every religion according to how many "elements" it has, but is present "in its fullness" in the Catholic religion which has all the "elements." To have all the truth/elements is best, but to have some truth/elements is also good and can lead to salvation. By this insanity, you could "respect" Satanism because it teaches "some element of truth" such as the existence of fallen angels. Vatican II then pays lip service to Christ as "the Way, the Truth, and the Life" after having effectively denied His One True Church and its absolute necessity for salvation.

Fr. Keating and Vatican II stand condemned by Pope Pius XI in Mortalium Animos (1928), para. # 2:
For which reason conventions, meetings and addresses are frequently arranged by these persons, at which a large number of listeners are present, and at which all without distinction are invited to join in the discussion, both infidels of every kind, and Christians, even those who have unhappily fallen away from Christ or who with obstinacy and pertinacity deny His divine nature and mission. Certainly such attempts can nowise be approved by Catholics, founded as they are on that false opinion which considers all religions to be more or less good and praiseworthy, since they all in different ways manifest and signify that sense which is inborn in us all, and by which we are led to God and to the obedient acknowledgment of His rule. Not only are those who hold this opinion in error and deceived, but also in distorting the idea of true religion they reject it, and little by little. turn aside to naturalism and atheism, as it is called; from which it clearly follows that one who supports those who hold these theories and attempt to realize them, is altogether abandoning the divinely revealed religion. (Emphasis mine).

Likewise, Pope Leo XII in Ubi Primum (1824), para. # 14:
It is impossible for the most true God, who is Truth Itself, the best, the wisest Provider, and the Rewarder of good men, to approve all sects who profess false teachings which are often inconsistent with one another and contradictory, and to confer eternal rewards on their members. For we have a surer word of the prophet, and in writing to you We speak wisdom among the perfect; not the wisdom of this world but the wisdom of God in a mystery. By it we are taught, and by divine faith we hold one Lord, one faith, one baptism, and that no other name under heaven is given to men except the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth in which we must be saved. This is why we profess that there is no salvation outside the Church. (Emphasis mine).

Turning to the (False) God Within

 According to Fr. Keating's website: Centering Prayer is a receptive method of silent prayer that prepares us to receive the gift of contemplative prayer, prayer in which we experience God's presence within us, closer than breathing, closer than thinking, closer than consciousness itself. This method of prayer is both a relationship with God and a discipline to foster that relationship. Here we see the Eastern gobbledygook at work. What, exactly, does it mean to be "closer than consciousness itself"? 

 Centering prayer actually isn't prayer at all. Prayer is meant to lift us up in thought to God, Who is totally distinct from us so we can be in a loving relationship with Him. Centering prayer has the person repeat a monosyllabic word ("mantra") to express his "intentionality" of being "one with God." He is to return to this word to prevent any distracting thought (holy or otherwise). The idea is to suspend thinking as much as possible.  Why would you want to do that? The intent of the technique is to bring the practitioner to the center of his own person or being. There he will allegedly experience the presence of the "God who indwells him." You look for God, as if He were a part of you, because in these pagan Eastern ideologies, God and the universe are one. This takes the form of pantheism or panentheism. 

These positions are similar, and in stark opposition of Church teaching that God and the universe are entirely distinct. According to one source that gave what I believe to be an accurate and concise definition:

Pantheism is the belief God and the universe can be equated; that God is the universe. This is different from panentheism (also called monistic monotheism), where all is in God; it says the divine interpenetrates all aspects of the universe and transcends it. So in panentheism the divine is separate, whereas in pantheism the universe itself could be defined as the divine. (See https://www.quora.com/What-exactly-are-pantheism-and-panentheism).

The First Vatican Council infallibly defined:

 1. If anyone shall deny One true God, Creator and Lord of things visible and invisible; let him be anathema. 

2. If anyone shall not be ashamed to affirm that, except matter, nothing exists; let him be anathema. 

3. If anyone shall say that the substance and essence of God and of all things is one and the same; let him be anathema. 

4. If anyone shall say that finite things, both corporeal and spiritual, or at least spiritual, have emanated from the Divine substance; or that the Divine essence, by the manifestation and evolution of itself, becomes all things; or, lastly, that God is a universal or indefinite being, which by determining itself constitutes the universality of things, distinct according to genera, species and individuals; let him be anathema. 

5. If anyone does not confess that the world, and all things that are contained in it, both spiritual and material, have been, in their whole substance, produced by God out of nothing; or shall say that God created, not by His will, free from all necessity, but by a necessity equal to the necessity whereby He loves Himself; or shall deny that the world was made for the glory of God; let him be anathema. 


The Evil of Centering Prayer 

  •  If centering prayer is to lead us to contemplation, and if contemplation is the experience of the loving presence of God, how can this happen if we reject His grace through loving thoughts of Him by banishing the active thought process? It is more of a hypnotic state than anything contemplative, and cannot be truly thought of as prayer in any Catholic sense of the word.
  • It actually goes against the teaching of St. Teresa who warns against suspending intellectual operations on our own (unless/until God gives the grace of infused contemplation): Unless His Majesty has begun to suspend our faculties, I cannot understand how we are to stop thinking, without doing ourselves more harm than good...(See The Interior Castle, fourth mansion, chapter 3). 
  • Fr. Keating attempts to defend the practice on his website as follows, Centering Prayer does not "empty the mind" or exclude other forms of prayer.  It is not a "technique" that automatically creates "mysticism" or a means "to reach an altered state of consciousness."It is important not to confuse Centering Prayer with certain Eastern techniques of meditation such as Transcendental Meditation. The use of the sacred word in Centering Prayer does not have the particular calming effect attributed to the TM mantra. Nor is the sacred word a vehicle leading to the spiritual level of one's being as it is in TM. There is no cause-and-effect relationship between using the sacred word and arriving at some altered state of consciousness. The sacred word is merely the symbol of the consent of one's will to God's presence and action within based on faith in the doctrine of the Divine Indwelling. "Sacred word"? "Divine Indwelling"? Not only is this Hinduism dressed up as "renewed Christian prayer," but Fr. Keating lies. His comrade, Fr. Basil Pennington (1931-2005), helped him spread centering prayer. Fr. Pennington approved a Catholic participating in TM, despite the fact that the introductory ceremony to TM, the Puja, involves worship of a dead Hindu guru and that the mantras given those being initiated are in fact the names of Hindu "gods." This is a direct mortal sin against the First Commandment. 
  • Fr. Keating, despite his protestations to the contrary, admits that his centering prayer work is based on the false ecumenism of Vatican II. He states on his website, It’s a very dismal scene sociologically for a young person who’s open to spiritual growth.So what can the religions do about this?  I think they will have to give a strong witness of nonviolence, of understanding, acceptance, appreciation and friendship to other religions even though they have personal dislikes of some things they do. What is being understood, in other words, is that we believe now, following Vatican II, that the Spirit is working in them also.  That means that the Word of God is manifesting itself in them without the words that we’re familiar with and is perhaps guiding them and is the source of grace for them.The fact that the Incarnation took place means that Christ is in relationship to every human being.  Hence, everybody is religious just by becoming one and is in relationship – you don’t have to get it – you are in relationship to the Source or Creator.  (Emphasis mine). 
  • The emptying of the mind by repeating a mantra is explained by proponents of centering prayer as a preparation for infused contemplation and likened to acquired contemplation. This simply is not Catholic teaching. According to the great theologian Garrigou-Lagrange, "If by acquired contemplation we mean a prayer distinct from simplified affective prayer, in which the intellect is totally absorbed by its object and in which we place ourselves by the suppression of all rational activity, we thereby not only create a degree of prayer unknown to St. Teresa and St. John of the Cross, but we likewise oppose their explicit teaching. In fact, St. Teresa repeatedly opposes the total suppression of discourse and the movement of thought as long as one has not received infused contemplation (Life, chapter 12; The Interior Castle, fourth mansion, chapter 3; The Ascent of Mount Carmel, Bk. II, chapter 15). (See The Three Ages of the Interior Life, St. Louis, B. Herder Book Co. [1948], 2: 311; Emphasis mine). 
  • Finally, there is a completely false notion of sin and human nature that comes with centering prayer. At the center of our being is NOT God; rather, we are born in Original Sin and devoid of God. We need the grace of baptism to have God dwell in us. If we are unfortunate to lose sanctifying grace, we must regain it through the Sacrament of Penance, or at least an Act of Perfect Contrition with the intention of confessing as soon as possible to regain the state of grace. Centering prayer claims you receive the experience of God regardless of your sins, by overcoming the "otherness" of God and finding Him "within"--an idea direct from pagan Hinduism. Again, as Fr. Keating states, "The fact that the Incarnation took place means that Christ is in relationship to every human being.  Hence, everybody is religious just by becoming one and is in relationship – you don’t have to get it – you are in relationship to the Source or Creator."

Conclusion
The apostate priest, Fr. Thomas Keating, has been busy spreading Eastern pagan ideology and pagan prayer under the guise of "silent prayer for contemporary people" in much the same way the Novus Bogus "mass" is an "updated version" of worship. Both are based on the heretical ecclesiology and ecumenism of Vatican II. Most frighteningly, people who practice centering prayer are so eager to "hear something supernatural within themselves," that in such an altered/hypnotic state precipitated by a pagan mantra, they open themselves up to suggestions of demons. It is a pagan practice, not some "updated form of monasticism"  for the laity. 

Centering prayer is aptly named if only for one reason: Like the Novus Bogus, it makes humans the center of its focus. People look for "god within" and to be told they are all good, all holy. Humans get the praise. There is no need for One True Religion, or to repent. It is then that those involved will find themselves in the center of the deception from which they may (God forbid) never escape. 

Monday, January 8, 2018

Perversity University


On Sunday, December 17, 2017, while Traditionalists were celebrating Gaudete Sunday (the third Sunday of Advent using the rare rose-colored vestments), "Father" Gregory Greiten of  St. Bernadette parish in the Vatican II sect diocese of Milwaukee said he was "breaking the silence of gay men in the clergy so he could reclaim his own voice." "I am Greg. I am a Roman Catholic [sic] priest[sic]. And, yes, I am gay!" he told worshipers Sunday. He received a standing ovation. (See https://www.usatoday.com/story/news/nation-now/2017/12/18/gay-priest-comes-out/961960001/).

  According to Vatican II sect priest Donald B. Cozzens, an estimated 23% to 58% of "priests" are in fact sodomites. That would mean that there are anywhere from 8,554 (low) to 21,571 (high) sodomite "priests" in the United States today based on the most recent figure of approximately 37,000. (See The Changing Face of the Priesthood, Liturgical Press, [2000]). How did we get to this point? Even 30 years ago, the thought of giving a standing ovation to a man who is mentally ill and/or morally deranged would have been unthinkable. Timothy J. Dailey, PhD, Senior Research Fellow at the Center for Marriage and Family Studies of the Family Research Council, wrote in his 2004 article, "Homosexuality and Child Sexual Abuse":

The circle of abuse is the tragic legacy of the attempts by homosexuals to legitimize having sex with boys... Individuals from the 1 to 3 percent of the population that is sexually attracted to the same sex are committing up to one-third of the sex crimes against children...The evidence indicates that homosexual men molest boys at rates grossly disproportionate to the rates at which heterosexual men molest girls. To demonstrate this it is necessary to connect several statistics related to the problem of child sex abuse:
1. men are almost always the perpetrator;
2. up to one-third or more of the child sex abuse cases are committed against boys;
3. less than three percent of the population are homosexuals.
Thus, a tiny percentage of the population [homosexual men], commit one-third or more of the cases of child sexual molestation.

The Vatican II sect members have not only has lost their faith, but obviously their marbles as well, if they can't link sodomites to the wave of child rape in their sect that has come forth since 2002. Mr. Greiten's "bishop," Jerome Listecki, not only supported his "coming out," but gave his approval for the National Catholic (sic) Register to publish an article that Greiten had written in their next issue, published on the following day. Greiten writes, "...there are no authentic role models of healthy, well-balanced, gay, celibate priests to be an example for those, young and old, who are struggling to come to terms with their sexual orientation." What? Homosexuality is one of the "Four Sins That Scream To Heaven For Vengeance" along with murder, oppression of the poor, and defrauding laborers of their rightful wages. As politically incorrect as it is for me to write this, it is no more possible to have a "healthy, well-balanced" sodomite, than there is to have a "healthy, well-balanced" murderer. 

 Fr. DePauw, my spiritual father, was in charge of admissions to Mount St. Mary's Seminary for the Archdiocese of Baltimore. He told me he rejected over 75% of the applicants because he suspected they were perverts. He rejected many others on suspicion of Modernism. All this he did with the full support of Archbishop Francis Keough, a prelate he described as "saintly." He also claimed that's why everyone who had the ear of Pope Pius XII did all they could to denigrate him and prevent him from obtaining the red hat of a Cardinal, a dignity expected to be given the Archbishop of Baltimore. When Abp. Keough took ill, Bishop Lawrence Shehan was appointed Coadjutor, meaning he would automatically succeed to the Archbishopric upon the demise of Abp. Keough.

 Shehan had already obtained a reputation in Bridgeport for being a "Modernist dictator" going back to his appointment there in 1953. When Abp. Keough left this world on the Feast of the Immaculate Conception in 1961, Shehan's first priority was to remove Fr. DePauw from his position and replace him with a priest who was "pastoral" towards those with "sexuality issues." (Read: a pervert who wanted other perverts to infiltrate the priesthood and destroy it). By the 1980s, St. Mary's was referred to as the "Pink Palace" for its "gay" subculture. Shehan would persecute Fr. DePauw and calumniate him relentlessly for the rest of his life. He was an arch-Modernist at Vatican II, and was given the red hat by Montini in 1965. He tried everything he could to shut down Father's Catholic Traditionalist Movement in 1964, and he just might have succeeded had it not been for Bishop Kurz, Cardinal Spellman and Cardinal Ottaviani. Shehan passed in 1984, never having retracted the calumnies against Fr. DePauw. I shudder to think where he is now. 

I tell this story because this is where the rot began; in seminaries and (formerly) Catholic colleges. It is important to indoctrinate people to accept both heresy and moral perversion under the veneer of "erudition." According to Father Andrew Walker, the situation at the Baltimore seminary was so bad that the vice rector delivered a lecture "in front of at least 150 people when he stated, ‘Yes, we accept openly gay seminarians; that's our policy.’" (See "Homosexual Culture Undercuts Priesthood," NewsMax.com, April 5, 2002). 

The Bizarre and Unnatural Legitimized
  When you send your children to college, don't think that only secular colleges and universities are left-wing, anti-God, and proponents of immorality. The "Young America's Foundation" ("YAF") regularly audits course catalogs, textbook requirements, and other components of today's colleges. According to YAF:

Today’s universities create "diversity and inclusion" centers and joyfully publish statistics on the diversity of race, gender, and sexual orientation of their faculty while remaining entirely homogeneous when it comes to diversity of ideas. As tuition rates increase and students face increasing levels of college-related debt, the value and quality of education plummets. Rather than churning out the next generation of American leaders, so-called "premiere" institutions graduate class after class of adults who are unable to tolerate opposing viewpoints. (See YAF.org) 

The following is an actual list of courses offered in "Catholic" colleges and universities in the United States.  WARNING!! Extremely disturbing content below.

From the Jesuit-run GEORGETOWN UNIVERSITY:

WGST 233: Culture, Politics, HIV
This course explores the affects attached to raced, sexed, and gendered embodiment through a comparative reading of discourse written on the bodies infected/affected in the transnational AIDS epidemic. In focusing on the two populations whose images have come to define popular perceptions of the epidemic—urban Western gay men and disenfranchised African women and children—we examine the shared affects of abjection and narratives of triumph attached to these bodies. Using a transnational feminist lens that pays particular heed to the racing and gendering of these bodies in a global context, we will question the ways in which these narratives of embodiment erase other bodies affected by the disease (such as African-American heterosexuals and queer Africans). We will also look at the ways in which people living with HIV/AIDS have crafted a number of transnational links that provide the opportunity for both resistant and complicit performances.
(See: https://myaccess.georgetown.edu/pls/bninbp/bwckctlg.p_disp_course_detail?
cat_term_in=201730&subj_code_in=WGST&crse_numb_in=233; Does anyone even know what this drivel MEANS?--Introibo)

THEO 025: The Bible and Horror
The Bible can be a scary book. From chaos monsters like Leviathan and Behemoth, to God's terrifying nighttime attack on Moses in Exodus 4, to the beast with seven heads and ten horns in the book of Revelation--the Bible often reads more like horror literature than religious literature. In this course we will explore why that might be. That is, what might religion and horror (or the monstrous) have in common, and how finally do they differ? Why does the horror genre draw so often on biblical and religious themes (as in Dracula's favorite quote from the book of Leviticus, "the life is in the blood")? And is the supernatural a necessary part of religion, or can religion exist within the bounds of reason alone? The class will engage in close readings of selected biblical texts, and move on to Gothic literature and modern films. A good deal of writing and reading will be required.
(See: https://myaccess.georgetown.edu/pls/bninbp/bwckctlg.p_disp_course_detail?
cat_term_in=201730&subj_code_in=THEO&crse_numb_in=025)

From the Archdiocese of Newark-run SETON HALL UNIVERSITY

POLS 2351: The Politics of Marriage
This course focuses upon gay marriage as a contemporary political idea, part of an important public policy debate. Gay marriage is bound to a larger historical, religious and cultural narrative. The course focuses upon the European and American experience. Other non-western and indigenous traditions are introduced to assist in examining the diversity and complexity of the topic. Complementary ideas are introduced and evaluated, most notably social construction and essentialism. This endeavor requires careful attention as many important voices here (women and queer individuals in particular) are historically marginalized.
(See: https://www.shu.edu/academics/upload/2017-2018-Undergraduate-Catalogue.pdf)

From the Jesuit-run XAVIER UNIVERSITY

THEO 324: Religion and Hip Hop
This course explores the relationship between religion and hip hop culture. Economic disenfranchisement has always played an important role in hip-hop culture. Similarly, the"religious" is consistently cited within hip-hop culture as a means of identity construction and ethical formation. Given these concurrent themes operating with hip hop, we will examine the various ways in which religious discourse, epistemologies, narrative and meaning constructs, classification schemes, language-worlds, images, ideas, rituals, and overall sensibilities are expressed in the performance of hip hop and concurrent cultural industries. To this end, we will place selected aspects of hip hop culture in dialogue with established religious traditions.

(See: https://banssbprod.xavier.edu:8099/PROD/bwckctlg.p_disp_course_detail?cat_term_in=201801&subj_code_in=THEO&crse_numb_in=324)


And even if not "Catholic," I had to give you an idea of what madness has infiltrated the Ivy Leagues. From COLUMBIA UNIVERSITY here in NYC:

SOCI UN 3985: Queer Practice
Is there a particularly “queer” way to live? Does a queer perspective mitigate for certain forms of social, interpersonal or political action? Are there sets of vocations, engagements or relationship formations that are, in and of themselves, distinctly queer? Or is queerness something that can infuse or transform pre-existing modes of personal or relational action? How does any of this relate to the version of “queer” one learns in college? Is a university education necessary, or even useful, for living a queer life? 

Does academic queer theory have any relevance to "real-world" politics, affects or activisms? Do classroom projects within Gender & Sexuality Studies prepare us to engage in projects of social change, political efforts, or in any meaningful way, to work more closely with others on shared goals related to social justice? Does a liberal arts education prepare us to navigate ideological, intellectual and interpersonal differences? To move from a critical gaze at social institutions into institutional change? To become more robust citizens of a world that includes a multiplicity of viewpoints, perspectives and values? Finally, at its best, what should the university classroom do to prepare students to forge their own social and political perspectives, and to move from gaze and consideration into movement and action?
(See : http://bulletin.columbia.edu/columbia-college/departments-instruction/sociology/
#coursestext)

Conclusion
The Modernists and perverts have turned the seminaries and colleges into cesspools of immorality and heresy. That's why a whole congregation can applaud Mr. Greitan's profession of unnatural desires. That's why Bergoglio tells us "Who am I to judge?" Seminaries are places for sodomites to hook-up while the few that aren't homosexual or bisexual are taught to accept unnatural vice as "normal." Since Vatican II, the Fathers, Doctors, and approved theologians/canonists have all been jettisoned from seminary. No longer will Aquinas, Liguori, Van Noort, Pohle, Prummer, and Regatillo be taught. They are replaced with Karl Rahner, Charles Curran, Richard O'Brien, Hans Kung, and Teilhard de Chardin. The colleges and universities that used to prepare people for their God-given vocation now compare the Bible to horror movies, try to show the "interface" between profanity-laced hip-hop music and religion, and make "gay OK." 

 When I graduated college in the 1980s, there was still solid education. Ditto for when I went to graduate school and law school. Since circa 2000, when the first generation of post-Vatican II graduates came into power, all Hell (literally) broke loose. Things will only get worse. Parents, please let this post serve as a warning as to where you send your children to college. Know what they do and what they learn. Earlier, I mentioned the lunacy of giving a standing ovation for a murderer, but can I see that happening in a Vatican II sect parish for someone who works for Planned Parenthood? Yes. Maybe, as some of my readers have suggested, the end isn't too far off. God help us; no One else can. 

Monday, January 1, 2018

Singing For Satan---Part 6


 This week I continue my once-per-month series of posts regarding an informal study I undertook in the early 1990s regarding rock and pop music. The purpose of my study (and the background to it) can be read in the first installment of August 7, 2017. If you have not read that post, I strongly encourage you to do so before reading this installment. I will only repeat here the seven (7) evil elements that pervade today's music:

1. Violence/Murder/Suicide
2. Nihilism/Despair
3. Drug and alcohol glorification
4. Adultery/ Fornication and sexual perversion
5. The occult
6. Rebellion against lawful superiors
7. Blasphemy against God, Jesus Christ in particular, and the Church

 The exposing of the bands/artists continues.


U2 and Bono

 One of the most deceptive bands of all time, U2, was formed in Dublin, Ireland in 1976. While many people see them as a "Christian band" or " a band of Christians," because of their philanthropy and the Biblical references to which they sometimes allude, in actuality U2 is very anti-Christian. The band is composed of "Bono" (b. Paul Hewson in 1960), "The Edge" (b. David Evans in 1961), Adam Clayton, and Larry Mullen, Jr. Originally calling themselves "Feedback" and then "The Hype," the group settled on "U2" in 1978 because it was open to interpretation and purposefully ambiguous. 

 The band has sold over 175 million albums worldwide, and were inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 2005; their first year of eligibility. U2 dominated the music charts during the 1980s and 1990s, and remain very active today, having released their 14th studio album on December 1, 2017 entitled Songs of Experience. They have won an incredible 22 Grammy Awards (more than any other band in history). Rolling Stone magazine ranked them #22 in its list of the "100 Greatest Artists of All Time," and ranked Bono #32 of the "100 Greatest Singers of All Time."  Bono and The Edge share the honor together of being listed by that same magazine as #35 on the "100 Greatest Songwriters of All Time."  


Good Voice, Evil Music
 Paul Hewson received his world-famous moniker "Bono" from his friend Gavin Friday who called him "Bono Vox" an alteration of the Latin "Bonavox" roughly translated as "Good Voice." Hewson liked it and dropped the "vox," hence being known as "Bono" ever since. Bono dubbed his friend David Evans "The Edge" because of his sharp features and sharp mind when helping Bono compose songs. Bono is indeed the spokesman and "face" of U2. 

 Bono was raised by a Catholic father and Protestant mother. His father was a nominal Catholic and (sinfully) agreed with his wife that their first child would be raised Anglican, and their second Catholic. Even though Bono was the second child he was taken to both Catholic Churches and Anglican services growing up. 

Bono has tried to ensnare people into believing that the message of Christ is about philanthropy to the exclusion of necessary beliefs. He professes to believe that Christ is God. As recently as 2013, Bono stated, "And I believe that Jesus was, you know, the Son of God,” Bono said, according to a transcript provided to Religion News Service. “I understand that for some people and we need to … if I could be so bold, need to be really, really respectful to people who find that ridiculous." (See http://www.wnd.com/2013/06/u2s-bono-jesus-is-the-son-of-god/#HBOe17ix1v4ZuzEV.99)

 He also throws some religious songs on albums to further deceive the public. U2's song 40, is a reference to Psalm 40. Here are the lyrics:

I waited patiently for the Lord
He inclined and heard my cry
He brought me up out of the pit
Out of the mire and clay
I will sing, sing a new song
I will sing, sing a new song
How long to sing this song
How long to sing this song
How long, how long, how long
How long, to sing this song
He set my feet upon a rock
And made my footsteps firm
Many will see
Many will see and fear

This is what Bono and U2 want you to think about them. Dig beneath the surface and you'll find the sinister truth. Bono has dressed up on stage as Mr. Macphisto, a play on the name Mephistopheles, a demon featured in German folklore. After the release of their album Achtung Baby in 1991, Bono "thought he needed a character point in the show[concerts], and the character was MacPhisto, the Devil, a very theatrical character. It was the first time he had done a character like that. And then we came up with a gold suit and red lamé, a ruffled shirt, the make-up and the Devil horns. Bono really took on the persona and got into character."  Even his friend The Edge described it as "disturbing."

"It was really a bizarre kind of chilling feeling seeing him," Edge says. "It was everything we discussed. It was very disturbing, very unreasonable, and nothing to do with entertainment. It was something much heavier. I thought the idea of the horns was over the top, I thought it was spelling it all out, but in fact it really works."
(See http://www.canadanne.co.uk/macphisto/who.html).

Below is a picture of Bono as Mr. MacPhisto, poking fun at religion.



Bono Reveals His True Colors

 In his book In Other Words: Artists Talk About Life and Work, author Anthony DeCurtis asks Bono about dressing up as a devil and calling the "Archbishop" of Canterbury on the phone while telling the audience religious leaders were some of his closest friends. Bono replied, "It's true. I often wonder if religion is the enemy of God. It's almost like religion is what happens when the Spirit has left the building." (See above referenced book, Hal Leonard Corp. Pub. [2005],  pg. 282; Emphasis mine). 

Bono is an ecumenist who sees the "three Abrahamic faiths" as equal, and wants them to work together for a world-wide religion. During U2's 2005 tour, Bono had the "Coexist" sign flash in the background while he led the fans in chants of "Jesus, Jew, Mohammed--it's true." (See https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HVoemrstxbI). 


 In their song In God's Country, the band sings that they stand with the "sons of Cain."

Sleep comes like a drug
In God's country
Sad eyes, crooked crosses
In God's country

Naked flame
She stands with a naked flame
I stand with the sons of Cain
Burned by the fire of love
Burned by the fire of love (Emphasis mine)

God doesn't feel the same way. In 1 John 3:12, we read: "Do not be like Cain, who belonged to the evil one and murdered his brother. And why did he murder him? Because his own actions were evil and his brother’s were righteous."

In the song Peace On Earth, the band tells us they want "Heaven on Earth" and eschew the message of Christ in the Gospel of St. John 14:27, "Peace I leave with thee; My peace I give unto thee. Not as the world gives do I give to thee. Let not thy hearts be troubled, neither let them be afraid."

Heaven on earth
We need it now
I'm sick of all of this
Hanging around
Sick of sorrow
Sick of pain
Sick of hearing again and again
That there's gonna be
Peace on earth...

Jesus, in the song you wrote
The words are sticking in my throat
Peace on earth
Hear it every Christmas time
But hope and history won't rhyme
So what's it worth?
This peace on earth

Peace on earth
Peace on earth

Peace on earth

The song If God Will Send His Angels blasphemously asserts that God can't help us, and even if He could, He really doesn't care.

Nobody else here baby
No-one else here to blame
No-one to point the finger
It's just you and me and the rain
Nobody made you do it
No one put words in your mouth
Nobody here taking orders
When love took a train heading south
It's the blind leading the blond
It's the stuff, it's the stuff of country songs
Hey, if God will send his angels
And if God will send a sign
And if God will send his angels
Would everything be alright?
God's got his phone off the hook, babe
Would he even pick up if he could?
It's been a while since we saw that child
Hangin' round this neighborhood (Emphasis mine).

The tune Wake Up Dead Man, contains a profanity as it rips into Our Lord and blasphemously denies the Resurrection by calling Christ a "dead man."

Jesus 
Jesus help me 
I'm alone in this world 
And a f***ed up world it is too (profanity censored by me)
Tell me 
Tell me the story 
The one about eternity 
And the way it's all gonna be 
Wake up 
Wake up dead man 
Wake up 
Wake up dead man 


Bono: Fast (and Gruesome) Facts
  • He founded the ONE Campaign, aimed at fighting extreme poverty and incurable diseases especially in Africa. How does Bono envision helping in this cause? Contraception and abortion! U2 performed concerts for the Contraception Action Campaign and the Irish Family Planning Association. Christ said, "For the poor you have always with you..." (St. Matthew 26:11) and "Seek ye first the Kingdom of God..." (St. Matthew 6:33). 
  • In the Communist rag, Mother Jones Magazine of May 1, 1989, Bono was asked, "How do you feel, for instance, about abortion?" He responded, "I just have my own ideas. I believe that it’s a woman’s right to choose. Absolutely."
  • He urged Ireland to legalize sodomite "marriage" and celebrated when they did make it legal, during a concert back in 2015. He said, "It’s a moment for us to thank the people who brought peace to our country, who had the courage to compromise in Ireland..."We have peace in Ireland today, and — in fact, on this very day — we have true equality in Ireland," he added. "Millions turned up to vote yesterday to say love is the highest law in the land. ...If God loves us, whoever we love, wherever we come from, then why can’t the state?" He also changed the lyrics to their smash 1984 hit Pride (In the Name of Love)--about Dr. Martin Luther King's murder--to say "They could not take away your gay pride" in place of "they could not take your pride." (See https://www.huffingtonpost.com/2015/05/26/u2-ireland-gay-marriage-_n_7442984.html). 
  • Liberal Protestant sects and their colleges/seminaries are openly considering making U2's lyrics and Bono's ideas part of the curriculum! In the book Get Up Off Your Knees, several contributing authors, including Eugene Peterson, author of The Message Bible translation, praise Bono and U2 as a "prophetic voice." In fact, Calvin College offered a class which analyzed U2′s influence on Christians. (See "Calvin College on U2," Christianity Today, February 23, 2005). 
  • While wearing the cross, he will sing the song I Still Haven't Found What I'm Looking For." Not exactly the message you'd expect to hear from one who allegedly follows Our Lord! In that same Mother Jones interview, Bono said, "...we don't have any answers...I Still Haven't Found What I'm Looking For. How much more clear can you make it?"

Conclusion
U2 and Bono are the most cunning liars and deceivers in today's world of music. They can rant and rave about how they are "Christian," and Bono can talk about his alleged "belief in Christ" until they are all blue in the face. The facts show us a group of liars who promote contraception, abortion, sexual perversion, religious indifferentism, and blaspheme Christ. Don't be taken in by charitable causes and token songs in praise of God. They fail the test set by Our Lord Himself, "Beware of false prophets, who come to you in the clothing of sheep, but inwardly they are ravening wolves.By their fruits you shall know them. Do men gather grapes of thorns, or figs of thistles? Even so every good tree bringeth forth good fruit, and the evil tree bringeth forth evil fruit. A good tree cannot bring forth evil fruit, neither can an evil tree bring forth good fruit. Every tree that bringeth not forth good fruit, shall be cut down, and shall be cast into the fire.Wherefore by their fruits you shall know them." (St. Matthew 7:15-20). 

Monday, December 25, 2017

The Glories Of St. Joseph


 As this post will be published on Christmas Day, I wish all of my readers a Blessed Nativity of Our Lord, and God's blessings throughout 2018. While I was meditating about Christmas this Advent, it occurred to me that the one person that seems to get the least recognition is the great St. Joseph, foster-father of Jesus Christ. There are Christmas hymns and carols that exalt Our Lord, Our Lady, and even the Magi--but not St. Joseph. St. Joseph, being the exemplar of humility, is no doubt happy that this is the case. However, in this week's post, I wish to bring to everyone's attention the glory that rightfully belongs to St. Joseph, and encourage all to be more devoted to him.

 Patron of the One True Church

 On the feast of the Immaculate Conception, December 8, 1870, Pope Pius IX decreed that St. Joseph was to be made Patron of the Catholic Church, and raised his feast day (March 19) to the rank of Double of the First Class. The decree Quemadmodum Deus, was published by the Sacred Congregation of Rites, and the text at the end seems like it could be written especially for our times:

On account of this sublime dignity which God conferred on His most faithful Servant, the Church has always most highly honored and lauded the Most Blessed Joseph next after his spouse, the Virgin Mother of God, and has implored his intercession in all her great necessities.

And now that in this most sorrowful time the Church herself is beset by enemies on every side and oppressed by heavy calamities, so that impious men imagine that the gates of hell are at length prevailing against her, the Venerable Prelates of the whole Catholic world have presented to the Sovereign Pontiff their own petitions and those of the faithful confided to their care, praying that he would vouchsafe to constitute St. Joseph Patron of the Catholic Church.

Moreover, when at the Sacred Ecumenical Council of the Vatican they renewed still more fervently this their petition and prayer, Our Most Holy Lord, Pius IX, Pope, moved thereto by recent deplorable events, was pleased to comply with the desires of the Prelates, and to commit to the most powerful patronage of the Holy Patriarch Joseph both himself and all the faithful and solemnly declared him Patron of the Catholic Church, and commanded his festival, occurring on the 19th of March, to be celebrated as a double of the first class, but without an octave on the account of Lent.


Patron of A Happy Death

 St. Joseph has always been venerated as the Patron of a Happy Death, i.e., a death in the state of sanctifying grace assuring us of Heaven. There are three very good theological reasons for so designating St. Joseph:
  • As the foster-father of Christ, St. Joseph can plead for us before Christ's Throne more effectively than anyone except his Immaculate Virgin Spouse
  • St. Joseph is the only saint to have an official Litany of the Church in his honor. In the litany of St. Joseph, he is called "Terror of demons." When Satan and the hordes of Hell make a last assault on our soul, who better to drive them away? In the book Begone Satan, which chronicles a dire case of demonic possession in Iowa during the year 1928, it is revealed that the exorcist was almost killed in an accident. When he resumed the exorcism, the demons revealed it was their intention to kill him in the accident, but "your powerful Patron" stopped us (St. Joseph)
  • His death was most happy, having Jesus and Mary at his deathbed to comfort and console him. He can be there for us, at the hour of our death, with his Immaculate Virgin spouse and Divine Foster Son.    

The Special Prerogatives of St. Joseph Considered


 There are several great privileges that many pre-Vatican II theologians believed could rightfully be ascribed to St. Joseph. Since the Great Apostasy, these issues cannot be decided. One of the leading "Josephite theologians" was the great Fr. Francis Filas. Theologian Filas was Chairman of the Theology Department at Loyola University in Chicago. He had published five books and twenty-four (24) scholarly articles on St. Joseph. The Oratory magazine lauded him as "one who has probably said more about St. Joseph than any other man in history." I have compiled the material below, about the most recent (pre-Vatican II) theological opinions on St. Joseph from the book St. Joseph and Daily Christian Living, The McMillan Company, NY, [1959], by theologian Filas. 

1. St. Joseph Pre-Sanctified in the Womb
 Joseph's holiness as second only to the Blessed Virgin Mary, goes hand in hand with his dignity. The theology of St. Joseph begins on the basis that his dignity surpasses all humans except the human nature of Jesus Christ and the Blessed Mother. The reason for this principle lies in God's providential choice of the Saint as the virginal husband of the Mother of God, and as Foster-Father of the God-Man Jesus Christ. His intricate closeness to Jesus and Mary means he was privileged above all other men.

 In the 15th century, certain theologians began to discuss whether or not Joseph was conceived without Original Sin. By the early 19th century, it was admitted by all he was not, and the dogma of the Immaculate Conception as a unique privilege of Mary confirms this conclusion. The theologians' opinion had evolved to claiming that St. Joseph was pre-sanctified in his mother's womb, just as is commonly taught regarding St. John the Baptist who "leaped for joy" in St. Elizabeth's womb when the pregnant Virgin Mary visited.

As there should be complementary virtues between spouses, it befits St. Joseph's vocation to have been pre-sanctified. St. Joseph is so intimately linked to the absolute purity of heart that existed in Jesus and was mirrored so faithfully in the Immaculate Heart of Mary. If Joseph had sinned at any time in his life, even in the slightest degree, this would have been a disgraceful flaw in one so close to God. It is therefore piously believed that St. Joseph was freed from Original Sin in his mother's womb, and never committed any actual sins, mortal or venial for his entire life. 

 Some object that only St. John the Baptist received this grace because Christ said, "Amen I say to you, there hath not risen among them that are born of women a greater than John the Baptist: yet he that is the lesser in the kingdom of heaven is greater than he." (St. Matthew 11:11). The theologians teach that Christ was using hyperbole to make a point that John's holiness was truly great. If we were to take Christ's words literally, that means St. John would be greater in holiness than either the Blessed Virgin Mary and even Jesus Himself, both born of a woman. This conclusion is manifestly false.

 St. Luke 7:28, gives a more faithful rendition of those words, "For I say to you: Amongst those that are born of women, there is not a greater prophet than John the Baptist. But he that is the lesser in the kingdom of God, is greater than he." In the absence of Magisterial authority to decide the issue, all we can say is if  this privilege was necessary and fitting to St. Joseph for his great vocation, then God bestowed it upon him. Beyond this point, we cannot go.

2. St. Joseph Assumed Body and Soul into Heaven

 Whereas the Immaculate Conception was a privilege unique to Mary, her Assumption was not.  A rather enigmatic text in the Gospel of St. Matthew (27:52) implies that at the resurrection of Christ, there were other bodies that rose from the dead united with their souls. "And the graves were opened: and many bodies of the saints that had slept arose,.." This would imply the Old Testament "saints" who achieved salvation (i.e., Isaiah). There are some theologians that teach these people had to die again, but there are difficulties with this opinion. If reception of Christ's Body, Blood, Soul, and Divinity in the Eucharist is a pledge of our future resurrection, how much more so should be the pledge for the man who protected and loved Him as He grew into Manhood? Should he not be given an anticipated resurrection and be united (body and soul) with Jesus and Mary in Heaven? Theologian Filas calls the Assumption of St. Joseph "a probable theological opinion."

The Honors Bestowed on St. Joseph by the Church

  •  He is the only individual saint to have a public Litany
  • He has a feast (March 19) and "baptized" the Communist "May Day" when Pope Pius XII made May 1st, the feast of St. Joseph the Workman, thereby showing the true Christian meaning of Labor 
  • He is the only saint with a month (March) and a day of the week (Wednesday) dedicated in his honor
  • He is regarded as a "Universal Patron Saint" because you can turn to him in all your needs for efficacious help as Patron of the Catholic Church
  • He has been lauded by several popes in Magisterial documents; Quemadmodem Deus and Inclytun Patriarcham (Pope Pius IX); Quamquam Pluries and Neminem Fugit (Pope Leo XIII); Bonum Sane (Pope Benedict XV), and  Divini Redemptoris (Pope Pius XI).


Conclusion
 In a world of dead-beat dads, single parent homes, and sodomite "marriages," we need St. Joseph's example of what true fatherhood and being a real husband is all about. In the time of the Great Apostasy, let us not fail to call upon him to see us through. Wear the Cord of St. Joseph, use St. Joseph's Oil, pray the Chaplet of St. Joseph and the Litany of St. Joseph (especially on Wednesdays, during March, and on his feast day) for all your spiritual and temporal needs. 

As the great Herbert Cardinal Vaughan remarked, "Of old it was said to the needy and suffering people in the kingdom of Egypt: 'Go to Joseph, and do all that he shall tell you.' (Genesis 41:55)...The same is now said by the Sovereign Pontiff to all needy and suffering people in the kingdom of the Church: ITE AD IOSEPH"  Indeed! Let us all remember to GO TO JOSEPH!  

Monday, December 18, 2017

The Science Of Prayer


 There is a definite method or "science" to prayer. The Church, and all Her great saints, remind us that prayer has four ends, or purposes, namely; to adore God, to atone for sin and beg forgiveness, to thank God for all He has done, and to petition Him for our needs and wants. I try to remember this at Mass and when I pray the Rosary. I remember to pray for the needs and spiritual goods of all my readers. Recently, a good friend of mine asked me to pray for his parents who are, sadly, both very ill. He is not even Christian, but believes in the power of prayer. I have hopes for his conversion one day. Unlike my friend, there are those who disparage prayer as "useless" and an "excuse not to do something."

 In 2006, there was what is now known as the "Benson Study," named after the chief medical and scientific researcher on the project, Dr. Herbert Benson. It was a large-scale statistical study purporting to show whether petitionary prayer for recovery from illness has any effect. Talk about "putting God to the test"! (See e.g., Deuteronomy 6:16, and St. Luke 4:12). Patients who had had coronary artery bypass graft surgery at 6 US hospitals were randomly assigned to one of three patient groups.One patient group received intercessory prayer (for an uncomplicated recovery) after being informed that they may or may not receive prayer; one patient group did not receive prayer after being so informed; and one patient group received prayer after being informed that they would receive prayer. Individuals were prayed for by their first names only, and their identity was not known to those praying. Those praying belonged to one of three Christian groups. Complications occurred to 52 per cent of the first patient group, to 51 per cent of the second group, and to 59 per cent of the third group. The virtually identical figures for the first and second group, both of whom were uncertain whether they would receive prayer, was regarded as a "negative result" showing that intercessory prayer has no effect. (See Study of the Therapeutic Effects of Intercessory Prayer (STEP) in cardiac bypass patients: a multicenter randomized trial of uncertainty and certainty of receiving intercessory prayer. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/16569567). 


Does the Benson Study Prove Prayer is Useless?

 While atheists and agnostics are cheering, the study does absolutely nothing to confirm prayer is useless or give credence to the alleged non-existence of God. Certainly, to want someone healed is a laudatory objective. However, that doesn't make prayer some kind of "magic" whereby God is bound to do what we want.  God hears our prayers, and answers them (if it is good for us) in a way best for us. Yet when we pray for another person, God knows far better than we do whether it will be best for that person and others affected by him, that he should recover immediately or later or not at all. According to theologian Ott, "The Fathers assert Divine foresight of conditioned future things when they teach that God does not always hear our prayers for temporal goods [such as the restoration of health], in order to prevent their misuse; or that God allows a man to die at an early age in order to save him from eternal damnation [due to God's foreseen knowledge that the man would abuse his free will in old age and die in mortal sin]." (See Fundamentals of Catholic Dogma, The Mercier Press [1955], pg.42; Parts in brackets are mine). 

It is also a truth that God uses suffering during our short stay here on Earth to make us better people. Suffering provides me the opportunity to become courageous and patient, as well as a chance to strengthen my faith in God despite of the suffering--like Job. My suffering gives others the chance to develop sympathy and help me both temporally and spiritually. Society has the chance to invest in ways to help suffering people like me, and choose to invest money to find a cure and give other means of support. Lastly, I can unite my suffering to the Suffering Savior Whom I follow and expiate for my sins and those of others. 

The Benson Study operates on the assumption that prayer, if efficacious (and assuming a Good God exists), should produce positive results whenever used by anyone. Besides the mistake of thinking that healing is the only (or greatest) good, the study also sees no merit in suffering. In addition, there are other problems which I will explore next.

Confounding Variables

 As a former NYC science teacher, I found this definition of a confounding variable to be both simple and right on target:
 Simply, a confounding variable is an extra variable entered into the equation that was not accounted for. Confounding variables can ruin an experiment and produce useless results. They suggest that there are correlations when there really are not. In an experiment, the independent variable generally has an effect on the dependent variable. For example, if you are researching whether a lack of exercise has an effect on weight gain, the lack of exercise is the independent variable and weight gain is the dependent variable. A confounding variable would be any other influence that has an effect on weight gain. Amount of food consumption is a confounding variable, a placebo is a confounding variable, or weather could be a confounding variable. Each may change the effect of the experiment design.(See http://www.softschools.com/examples/science/confounding_variable_examples/479/). 

First Confounding Variable: Putting God to an Explicit Test
According to theologian Jone, the essence of the sin of tempting God is to make an experiment of one of the perfections of God (His Wisdom, Power, etc.) God is tempted explicitly if one does something or asks something for the purpose of ascertaining whether He possess a certain power or here and now uses it. The sin of tempting God is always mortal sin. (See Moral Theology, The Newman Press, MD, [1962], pg.100).Don't expect God to answer prayers that are motivated by sinful desires.

Second Confounding Variable: Dishonest Prayer
According to philosopher of religion, Professor Richard Swinburne, why would God answer prayers to test someone's hypothesis? They are not really praying out of compassion for the afflicted, but to further some experiment. In the Benson Study, people were not praying out of genuine love and compassion for the afflicted. They didn't even know for whom they were praying. This might be called "dishonest prayer" or prayer from insincere/non-compassionate reasons. (See  Science and Theology News, April 7, 2006; Swinburne, Richard, Response to a Statistical Study of the Effect of Petitionary Prayer ).  

Third Confounding Variable: All Prayers Are Not Equal
The Holy Sacrifice of the Mass and the Rosary are by far superior to all other prayers. Were these used? Were there any Traditionalists? God will only help non-Catholics to dispose them to eternal salvation in the One True Church.  The prayer of a devout Traditionalist in the state of grace is most efficacious because "Without faith, it is impossible to please God." (Hebrews 11:6). The only true Faith is that of the Traditionalist Catholic Church.

The True Power of Prayer

 It is a truth that God knows all things with infallible certainty. If that is the case, how is prayer effective? If God knows a certain person will die as the result of a car crash, but people pray for his recovery and the person survives, then God didn't "know" he would die as the result of a car crash; He seemingly "changed His mind." The Bible does speak in such terms, but it's a metaphorical way of speaking, not literal. According to theologian Molina, God has predestined things according to the foreseen merits and demerits of people. Since God already knew you would pray, He took those prayers into account before He ordered the universe (See, e.g. discussion of Molina and predestination in Ott's Fundamentals of Catholic Dogma, pg. 243). We also see in the Bible how God knew how people would react in any given situation. For example we read in St. Matthew 11:21, " “Woe to you, Chorazin! Woe to you, Bethsaida! For if the miracles that were performed in you had been performed in Tyre and Sidon, they would have repented long ago in sackcloth and ashes." God knew how the people would have responded to miracles. 

 So when you pray, remember that God has factored your prayers into His Divine Plan!

Conclusion

We can't have "scientific studies" that will prove or disprove the power of prayer. The true science of prayer has been outlined by the great saints, most notably St. Francis de Sales, St. Ignatius of Loyola, St Alphonsus Liguori, St. Louis de Montfort, and St. John of the Cross (among others). There has been given significance to your prayers from all eternity by Almighty God. I'll never forget (and try to live by) the aphorism Fr. DePauw passed on to me: "Remember! Pray as if everything depends on God--which it does. But then act as if everything depends on you!"