Saturday, September 25, 2004

Full-Page Ad in National Post Compares Abortion to Slavery, Holocaust

The ad is running in a Canadian newspaper and has the following quotes:
* "In the eyes of the law... The slave is not a person." Virginia Supreme Court decision, 1858

* "An Indian is not a person within the meaning of the Constitution." George Canfield - American Law Review, 1881

* "The statutory word 'person' did not in these circumstances include women." British Voting Rights case, 1909

* "The Reichsgericht itself refused to recognize Jews... as 'persons' in the legal sense." German Supreme Court decision, 1936

* "The law of Canada does not recognize the unborn child as a legal person possessing rights." Canadian Supreme Court - Winnipeg Child and Family Services Case, 1997
How many more millions must die before we come to our senses?

See the Ad.

Friday, September 24, 2004

A mother revives her campaign to change the Sacrament of the Holy Eucharist

I thought I had posted this last night but it was posted as a draft...
A mother is stepping up her campaign to get the Roman Catholic Church to permit the use of nonwheat-based hosts in the sacrament of Holy Communion.

Liz Pelly-Waldman on Tuesday sent a second letter to Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger, prefect of the Congregation for the Doctrine of Faith at the Vatican, in which she asked the Church to "revisit the theological definition of bread."
I'm certain Cardinal Ratzinger is right on top of this!
Pelly-Waldman . . . began her quest to get the Church to permit the use of communion wafers made of nonwheat-based flour after she learned that the First Holy Communion of her 8-year-old daughter, Haley, was considered invalid by the Diocese of Trenton.
Well, not exactly - the Church teaches that matter of the Sacraments cannot be changed - the Diocese of Trenton, in communion with the universal Church, explained the doctrine to the Ms Pelly-Waldman...
Pelly-Waldman said she decided to write a second letter after she received no response to the first one written to Ratzinger several months ago.
Oops! It looks like Cardinal Ratzinger is NOT on top of this...
Pelly-Waldman in her latest letter addresses the question of whether transubstantiation -- the Catholic doctrine that says the moment the wafer is consecrated by a priest it turns into the body of Christ -- occurs in nonwheat-based hosts.
Hmmm...Either someone failed to properly explain transubstantiation or the woman wasn't listening. Of course, even a correctly educated grade school student would be able to answer this question. She could have asked a priest (not the one who attempted to consecrate a rice wafer) or her bishop rather than the good cardinal. Maybe, though, he will answer by sending her a copy of the Catechism?
Pelly-Waldman said she agrees with the position that the matter now is between her and the Vatican, rather than between her and her local church or the Trenton diocese.
The diocese explained it once and she didn't like the answer or the explanation...
"This is not something that should be decided by the diocese," she said.
The diocese passes on faithfully what it has received, the bishop faithfully hands on what he has received - this is called Sacred Tradition. This Sacred Tradition, with Sacred Scripture make up the Deposit of Faith, the interpretation of which has been entrusted to the Magisterium of the Church. The diocesan bishop, in communion with the Holy Father, explains the truth to her, but it falls on deaf ears....Why?
"I'm questioning 2,000 years of tradition," she said. "To think that in a matter of two months that I've even had this much of an effect is amazing. This is basically a David and Goliath here. I'm happy with how far we've come."
Someone needs to tell her that her complaint, (the problem of which has been addressed previously) will go nowhere. Remedial catechesis is needed: form, matter, intention, what sacraments arem why Christ instituted them, why the Church has been given the authority to teach and interpret, etc, etc...someone should engage in a spiritual work of mercy and go over all of this with her. It might save her some further embarassment.

She should also consider what is best for her daughter who suffers from the disease which prevents her from receiving our Lord under the species of bread. Keep both her and her daughter in your prayers - perhaps, with the guidance of the Holy Spirit, she will come to understand and accept the crosses that our Lord wishes to give us so tha we will bear them for Him and for our own sanctification.


Important reminders for tonight and tomorrow

Tonight at 9:00pm CST on EWTN, the first of Priests for Life's six part series we air (actually this is a rebroadcast of Wednesday's program). I understand that this is a "Must See" series for Catholics who want to be better prepared to present authentic Catholic teaching with regard to our involvement in the political life.

Tomorrow, Saturday 25, there will be a Latin Mass celebrated by Fr. Oppenheimer of the Canons Regular of the New Jeursalem in Ofallon, MO. Details here.

Catechists: instruments of God’s joy and peace

Archbishop Burke comments on catechists and states that his first responsibility is to teach the faith.
To put it plainly, I depend upon our catechists to teach the faith with integrity and, therefore, I have the responsibility to provide for catechists the ongoing education and formation which will equip them to hand on the deposit of faith to those whom they catechize.

This is a very good article and he explains just how we can find joy and peace:
Only when we have disciplined ourselves to honor the truth about our relationship with God, with one another and with the rest of creation, do we find abiding joy and peace in our lives.
We are also reminded that "Doctrinal formation goes hand-in-hand with spiritual formation." We must also be keenly aware that "the catechist teaches others the way of life which he or she lives. The catechist teaches Christ, in whom he or she lives." We must be properly formed spiritually as well as doctrinally.

The Archbishop's article is here.

Ex-priest is charged in child sex case

A former Roman Catholic priest, whose whereabouts is unknown, has been charged with sexually abusing a boy when he was a parish priest in recent years in St. Louis, police said Thursday.

Juan Duran, 44, was named Wednesday in an at-large warrant with statutory sodomy in the first degree.

Jim Orso, spokesman for the archdiocese, said he knew little about Duran, except that he was ordained in 1996 and was assigned in Memphis before St. Louis.
The article states that Duran may now be living in Bolivia. He was assigned to St. Francis de Sales Parish at the time of the allegations.


United Way Supports Abortion

United Way supports Planned Parenthood, one of the world's foremost abortion promoting and performing agencies.
Many people over the years have simply quit giving money to y\the United Way. It's a shame that its deteriorated the way it has.


Thursday, September 23, 2004

More RFT Letters about Archbishop Burke

The letter keep coming in to the RiverFrontTimes regarding Archbishop Burke and the scandalous attack articles written about him recently.

The first letter is from a man who thinks he is a comedian. But, then he goes over the edge by calling the Archbishop "Gay Ray"...
Burke's Works

Not everybody loves Raymond: I am a survivor! From age nine through age sixteen I was under the absolute control of a homosexual priest [Malcolm Gay, "Immaculate Deception," August 25]. Together we did everything one can imagine that a man and boy can do. After many years of psychosis, I went to the chancery office to tell them my story. That was a waste of time.

Gay Ray is the worst example of an archbishop I can imagine. Burke is such an egomaniac, he is not going to have any priests left to follow him because he is leading them down a path which will destroy the church.
Name withheld by request
He further concludes that Archbishop Burke is an egomaniac. It seems quite apparent that the man has never met or talked with the Archbishop for this could not be farther from the truth. In addition, any priests who might leave the Church in order to avoid following the Archbishop would be leaving sooner or later anyway. And lastly, Archbishop Burke is leading the faithful on a path of renewal and sanctity in order that the Church here might be saved from those who are intent on destroying her.

Next, we have another supporter of the Arcbishop who sees him as he really is.

Wicked ways: For all those "anonymous" priests who are selling their eternal souls to belong to some unnamed American secular "church" and who choose to anonymously persecute good, holy and faithful Archbishop Burke, I have a warning:

Read Ezekiel 3:17-20 -- you may be "anonymous" here on earth, but God will be waiting for you after your deaths.
Darla Meyers
Hudson, Wisconsin
Next...As heartbreaking and demoralizing as it must be to lose a son to suicide, one must remain hopeful. We can be certain the God, Who is All-Just, will deal with unrepentant sinners in a most fitting manner. I, too, believe that the names of the perpetrators of these crimes should be released.

Requiescat in pace: We have no proof but believe my son, who committed suicide in 1984, was one of those abused by Michael McGrath. And of course he was often reassigned. I hope you can publish the names of all the abusers.
Name withheld by request
And finally, unending praise is bestowed on Malcom Gay for what some conclude is a truthful and thoroughly documented account of a bishop's response to abuse allegations. Some others, however, are not so eager to join in this adulation since the full truth was absent the article.

A rare and telling tale: I can't imagine all the research required to put this type of article together. Malcolm Gay's hard work is appreciated. Even though the victims' statements are disturbing to read, they are key to understanding the true scope of the clergy abuse problem. It is rare to read a true and documented account of a bishop's response to victims' allegations, and very telling.
Kim Fischer
Crystal City

Dr. Ed Peters comments on recent Zenit article

From Ed Peters:
For a brief clarifying comment from me on an otherwise good annulments interview (in ZENIT) with Roman canon law professor Fr. Miguel Ortiz, click on:

Karl Keating: "Catholic Answers will not be intimidated!"

In a brazen attempt to silence anyone who opposes legalized child-killing in America, the nation’s leading pro-abortion Catholic—Frances Kissling of Catholics For a Free Choice—has launched a full-scale attack on Catholic Answers for publishing the Voter’s Guide for Serious Catholics. On September 20, 2004, Kissling and CFFC filed a “complaint” with the IRS, claiming erroneously that our voter’s guide violates tax rules governing non-profit charitable organizations.

And—get this—she’s going to try to STOP US from running the voter’s guide as a full-page ad in USA Today!
Catholic Answers Press Release in response to "Catholics for A Free Choice" complaint to the IRS.

Let’s make a deal: Catholic conscience and compromise

It’s a good time to reflect on the meaning of the Kennedy-Cuomo legacy.
That’s a deal with the devil, and it has a balloon payment no nation, no public servant and no voter can afford.
Archbishop Chaput's latest column.

Wednesday, September 22, 2004

Anne Burke fears for priest panel autonomy

The outgoing head of the U.S. Catholic Church's review board on sex abuse issues said Monday that bishops were planning to appoint a nun to the panel, a move she feared would reduce the board's independence from church hierarchy.

In a sometimes fiery speech at Loyola University Chicago, Illinois Appellate Court Judge Anne Burke said the plan was more evidence of what she called "mischievers at work" within the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops...
Reading this article, one gets the impression that she wants to have the final say in what goes on int the NRB - in a way, very similar to others who want to overrule decisions of the hierarchy.

For example:
"We find ourselves at a turning point in which forces within the hierarchy are seeking to derail much of what has occurred," Burke said Monday.

Bishops at a closed meeting this summer tried to delay a proposed 2004 audit of whether dioceses were complying with efforts to end the abuse crisis...Both efforts failed, said Burke, "because we raised holy hell."

"Then they put in someone [Sister Carol Keehan] who didn't go through that process [of board member selection]. That is a violation of trust," Burke said.
It seems Karl Keating's advice would be best. Anyone with a modicum of rational thinking knows the reasons why the scandal occurred.

The Chicago Tribune article on Anne Burke is here.

Catholics must obey God at polls

Here is an Opinion article published in the Atlanta Journal Constitution by a Catholic parishioner supporting Archbishop Donoghue and others:
Atlanta Archbishop John Francis Donoghue and others have chosen to remain faithful to the vows of obedience they professed at their ordination. I fully support them.
I think most Catholics support the good and faithful bishops.

Full Article is here.

And then there is this opposing opinion. 'Archbishop does not control our thinking'.
And to whom does the author refer for her dissenting opinion? None other than Cardinal Theodore McGarrick of Washington, Cardinal Roger Mahoney of Los Angeles and theologian John Courtney Murray. Apparently she does not hear the voice of the Holy Father or Cardinal Ratzinger. She states, in part, to support defiance to "Hunmanae Vitae" and other moral issues:
Listening to other authorities in addition to the hierarchy became a necessity for most U.S. Catholics after a pope issued the encyclical on birth control in the 1960s. At that time, many looked to the Canadian bishops' response — with its acknowledgment of the role of individual conscience — and to the reasoning of moral theologians to navigate the confusion caused by that encyclical.

The frequent use of abortion on demand, almost as a method of birth control, is not the only moral issue of importance to Catholics during this election year. The Scriptures and Catholic teaching call us to active concern for others, especially the poor, those enduring the violence of war, and all who suffer discrimination. This is not a one-issue election.
She could not be more wrong - all nearly all accounts. She would do much better to assent to the fullness of truth of Catholic Moral teachings and conform her will to that of Christ and His Church.

Dissenting article here.

Northeast Deanery Consolidation Plan revealed

The plan for the Northeast County Deanery is to reduce 25 parishes to 10.

The South City Deanery proposal has not yet been made public.

Hopefully, we will not experience the same problems that the Boston Archdiocese is going though (church sit-ins, etc).

According to the Post Dispatch:
Combine Transfiguration, St. Aloysius and Our Lady of Loretto parishes in the Spanish Lake area into a single parish under a new name at Our Lady of Loretto, 11725 Bellefontaine Road. St. John Neumann School, an area school on the Loretto grounds, would be kept or merged with another school south of Interstate 270.

Combine St. Jerome, St. Pius X, St. Catherine of Alexandria, Our Lady of Good Counsel and Corpus Christi parishes in the Jennings-Bellefontaine Neighbors area into a single parish under a new name at Good Counsel, 1134 St. Cyr Road. The school at Corpus Christi would be merged into the one at Good Counsel, possibly also with St. John Neumann School.

Combine St. Dismas, Our Lady of Fatima, St. Thomas the Apostle and St. Christopher in the Florissant area into a single parish under a new name at St. Dismas, 2650 Parker Road. The school at Fatima would be merged into the one at St. Thomas.

Combine St. Bartholomew, Sts. John and James, Good Shepherd and St. Sebastian in the Kinloch-Ferugson area into a new parish under a new name at Good Shepherd, 1050 Smith Avenue. Good Shepherd's school would be merged into the one at Sts. John and James.

Merge North American Martyrs into Sacred Heart in Florissant, keeping Sacred Heart's school, and merge Our Lady of Mercy into St. Martin de Porres in Hazelwood.

Preserve St. Ferdinand, St. Sabina, St. Norbert and St. Angela Merici parishes and their schools in the Florissant area, and maintain Our Lady of Guadalupe in Cool Valley as a parish for Hispanic Catholics. Guadalupe's school would be merged into the combined one at Sts. John and James.

Saint's Blood Reportedly Liquefies - Again

I had missed this the other day.
So said Cardinal Michele Giordano, archbishop of Naples. Before thousands of faithful gathered in the cathedral this morning, on the liturgical feast of the city's patron, the cardinal announced that the saint's blood liquefied yet again.

The miracle of the liquefaction of St. Januarius' blood, contained in a sealed glass vial, can occur three times a year: on Sept. 19, his feast day; the first weekend of May; and Dec. 16, anniversary of the eruption of Vesuvius in 1631 which, according to tradition, ended after the faithful prayed to the city's patron.

Januarius, bishop of Benevento, was decapitated in 305.
Zenit article.

Publisher of Catholic magazine forced to resign

Deal Hudson, publisher of Crisis magazine and, until recently, a top Bush political adviser on outreach to Roman Catholics, will resign from the magazine at the end of the year after five of his most influential columnists pressured the board to get rid of him.
I received Deal's E-Letter last night and he indicated that he resigned of his own volition. Additional accusations are rumored to be about. I think he has done the right thing by resigning from Crisis Magazine.


Bishop Gracida's editorial

There is only one thing that could be considered proportionate enough to justify a Catholic voting for a candidate who is known to be pro-abortion, and that is the protection of innocent human life. That might seem to be contradictory, but it is not.

Tuesday, September 21, 2004

Have you heard of this? I'm not

I' was created for the purpose of showing women that exercising their legal right to terminate their pregnancy is not the blood-spattered guilt trip so many make it out to be.

It is not intended to make women’s decisions for them, but to provide information to make the choice that will be best for them.

This site exists to tell women that it’s okay not to feel sad or ashamed after an abortion.

You are not a baby killer. You are not irresponsible. You are not selfish. And, above all, you are not evil.
The Evil One, the liar and the father of lies, the murderer from the beginning has enlisted the aid of others to speak with such confidence to humanity!
"The primary reason INS was created was that almost without exception all other story sites were full of regretful women. If a woman who had had a positive abortion experience attempted to post to one of these sites, they were turned down--even at the sites that claimed to be "neutral."
The site has posted many, many "stories" of "positive" abortion experiences - fulfilling the desire to murder the innocent - exercising a "right?" to deny God His rights and their children their rights to life.

The stories give an insight into the confusion and sin that enslaves these people. It is an example of the depravity that has taken over far too many people in this country and in others. Unfortunately, the millions of murdered children are not in a position (yet!) to tell of their "positive" experiences of being aborted.

Prepare yourself for anger and sorrow if you read these stories.

Send an email of thanks and support to Archbishop Myers

This email came in today at lunch time.

I am sharing it with you and, with Austin Ruse, ask that you send an email of thanks and gratitude to Archbishop John Myers for his recent article in the Wall Street Journal (Excerpts of his article were posted here yesterday). I sent my email to him minutes ago.

Dear Colleague,

We continue reporting on the vital question of whether Catholics may vote
for a pro-abortion politician. While specifically Catholic, this ongoing
analysis can be helpful to all people of faith in wrestling with this
question. We report today on a brave Archbishop and a conference held last
week in Washington DC.

Spread the word.

Yours sincerely,

Austin Ruse

Action item: I am providing a link to Archbishop John Myers Wall Street Journal column from Friday:

Read this wonderful teaching document and then send an email of thanks to this brave man who no doubt will come under attack from those on the left. You can email him at This is vitally important. I am looking for 500 messages from all over the world and from all faiths. Do not hesitate. Do it now.
September 21, 2004 Volume 2, Number 7

Voting Questions Continue, Abortion Dominates

The question of whether or not Catholics may vote for pro-abortion candidates in light of a note by a prominent Vatican cardinal has continued to gain steam in the last week. One American Archbishop published a column in a national newspaper saying that in practical terms no issue exists today that would trump the issue of protecting the unborn. And at a major conference in Washington DC addressing the same question, several prominent Catholic scholars emphatically declared abortion and the protection of human embryos to be the preeminent issue for Catholics voters.

As reported in last week's Culture & Cosmos, many media outlets have reported that Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger, in a recent memorandum addressed to US Bishops, gave approval for voting for pro-abortion candidates as long as the voter agreed with the candidate on other serious issues. The debate hinges on the proper definition of the phrase "proportionate reasons," a term used in the memorandum that has specific meaning within Catholic moral theology. Ratzinger, the Vatican's leading theologian, said any vote for a pro-abortion politician is cooperation in "evil." But a person who votes for a pro-abortion politician may receive communion if he voted that way for "proportionate reasons."

Newark Archbishop John J. Myers attempted to answer the question of what such proportionate reasons could be in a column published in Friday's edition of the Wall Street Journal. "[F]or a Catholic citizen to vote for a candidate who supports abortion and embryo-destructive research, one of the following circumstances would have to obtain: either (a) both candidates would have to be in favor of embryo killing on roughly an equal scale or (b) the candidate with the superior position on abortion and embryo-destructive research would have to be a supporter of objective evils of a gravity and magnitude beyond that of 1.3 million yearly abortions plus the killing that would take place if public funds were made available for embryo-destructive research. Frankly, it is hard to imagine circumstance (b) in a society such as ours."

Myers emphasized that abortion could not be spoken of in the same way as other social justice issues. "Certainly policies on welfare, national security, the war in Iraq, Social Security or taxes, taken singly or in any combination, do not provide a proportionate reason to vote for a pro-abortion candidate."

Ave Maria School of Law sponsored a gathering of scholars Thursday to address questions surrounding Catholic politicians and abortion at the National Press Club in Washington DC. With well over 300 in attendance, Father Richard John Neuhaus, the publisher and editor of First Things, made a pointed statement on the priority of abortion. "Is it permitted to vote for someone like a Kerry? Rome and the Bishops have been abundantly clear that abortion is not one of many issues. This is singular and it does have priority. . . . Any well instructed Catholic has had it repeatedly, insistently, persuasively, winsomely, lovingly put on his or her conscience that we have a moral obligation to positively protect innocent human life."

Princeton University professor Robert P. George, also speaking at the conference, offered an in-depth critique of attempts by Catholic politicians like former New York Governor Maria Cuomo to justify their pro-abortion position. George stressed that promoting the pro-life position is not an imposition of one's religion because it is a position derived from natural law. "The Church teaches that the right to life is a fundamental norm of justice and human rights that can be understood even apart from divine revelation and Church authority."

Copyright, 2004 --- Culture of Life Foundation. Permission granted for unlimited use. Credit required.

Culture of Life Foundation
1413 K Street, NW, Suite 1000
Washington DC 20005
Phone: (202) 289-2500
Fax: (202) 289-2502

Canonist says bishops must deny Communion to dissident politicians

Franciscan Father John J. Coughlin, a civil and canon lawyer, said church law obliges bishops to deny Communion to politicians who obstinately refuse to budge from a public position upholding legal abortion despite warnings and efforts to educate them on why their view is contrary to church teaching.

But he said there may be good pastoral reasons for not doing that during an election campaign.

Father Coughlin, who teaches law at the University of Notre Dame, addressed the canon law aspects of the question Sept. 16 at a conference, "Public Witness/Public Scandal," which was devoted to exploring various aspects of the topic.

The question has led to a national controversy this year, sparked in large part by the candidacy of the Democratic presidential nominee, Sen. John F. Kerry, a Catholic who supports keeping abortion legal. The Ave Maria Law School and Our Sunday Visitor Foundation co-sponsored the daylong conference, held at Washington's National Press Club.
I wonder if the "good pastoral reasons" for refusing to obey Church law are akin to the "proportionate reasons" confusion of late? It would be interesting to hear or read what these "pastoral reasons" might be - Certainly, we have all witnessed the problems caused by many of those in authority who resort to using the term "pastoral reasons" to justify all sorts of questionable actions and inactions.


"Catholics for a Free Choice" File IRS Complaint Against Catholic Answers

WASHINGTON, Sept. 20 /U.S. Newswire/ -- Following is a statement of Frances Kissling, president of Catholics for a Free Choice:

Catholics for a Free Choice today filed a complaint with the Internal Revenue Service against Catholic Answers, Inc. for blatant violation of its charitable status. CFFC called on the IRS to exercise its "authority to revoke the tax-exempt status of Catholic Answers and bring an action to enjoin this organization from again distributing this guide through national newspaper advertisements in October."
For those who have welcomed the clarity of the Catholic Answers' Voter's Guide, this should come as no surprise. For those of us who have helped to distribute the "Guide", this should be an impetus for us to do even more.


Ad campaign challenges Catholics to vote their faith

Catholic Citizens of Illinois (CCI), a self-described orthodox Catholic organization, announced the forthcoming launch of a multi-state radio ad campaign designed to motivate faithful Catholics to the polls on November 2 to vote their faith in the upcoming election.

CCI, according to a statement released, characterized their forthcoming ad campaign as a response to "Pope John Paul II's call for Catholic men and women to become engaged in the public defense of the faith."
This is a commendable effort on the part of a Catholic group to use the media to educate the public, especially since a recent Post-Dispatch poll shows Kerry ahead in Illinois by 15 points.

Article here.

Vatican's new Latin dictionary

The Vatican has produced a new dictionary of modern words in Latin, including translations for words like hot pants, punk and Lambrusco wine.

The book has been produced by the Latinitas Foundation and is intended to provide updated vocabulary for theologians writing in Latin about current issues.

Another Article on the Diocese of Tucson

Diocese files for bankruptcy
The Catholic Diocese of Tucson proposed a bankruptcy reorganization plan on Monday that would compensate victims of sexual abuse while resulting in little or no disruption to the operations of its 75 parishes.
Arizona Republic

Pray for the soul of Eugene Armstrong

and for his family and friends.

I pray also that the brutal animals committing these atrocities will be found and summarily eliminated from the face of the earth.
U.S. officials confirmed that Armstrong, who was abducted Thursday, had been brutally murdered, saying they found his body and identified his remains.

The horrific video shows a bound and blindfolded Armstrong sobbing and rocking while kneeling on the floor surrounded by five masked gunmen.

The terrorist in the middle — whose voice sounds like Zarqawi's, according to some analysts — reads a diatribe in which he calls President Bush a "Christian dog" and castigates the United States about its refusal to release Iraqi women from jails.

Then the masked madman rushes Armstrong from behind, pulls out a knife and bellows, "Since you didn't release our sisters, here's the first infidel."

The killer then begins slicing off Armstrong's head, while the victim gasps and blood spurts from his neck. When the unspeakable act is finished, the killer holds up the severed head and places it on Armstrong's body.

We can be certain that sooner or later justice will prevail.

Monday, September 20, 2004

Diocese of Tucson Files for Bankruptcy

TUCSON, Ariz. — The Roman Catholic Diocese of Tucson (search) filed for bankruptcy protection Monday under the weight of debt and pending litigation from clerical sex abuse cases.

The diocese is only the second in the nation to seek the protection of a bankruptcy court in the wake of extensive and continuing legal action stemming from sexual abuse of children by parish priests.

The Portland (Ore.) Archdiocese was the first when it filed July 6.

The decision will subject the Tucson Diocese's financial operations to court scrutiny for the first time, and potentially open the way for non-church interference.

Tucson Bishop Gerald F. Kicanas (search) had signaled his intent in June, telling parishioners in a letter that bankruptcy protection appeared to be the only option remaining for the diocese, which serves some 350,000 Catholics in 75 parishes.
Another one...I hope this is a mistake.

Updated Info on the Nov 9 Archbishop Burke Dinner & Talk

The topic of Archbishop Burke's talk will be:

“Catholic Moral Teaching and the Common Good”.

More information (including the menu) is here.

You may want to make reservations early so that you don't miss this event with one of the more courageous bishops of the U.S.

On EWTN - Election 2004: The Catholic Vote

This Friday at 9:00pm CST EWTN will air the first show of this six-week series.
Join EWTN for the six weeks prior to the 2004 Presidential election, as this series walks you through issues of voter responsibility.

Along with special guests, Father Frank Pavone explains what the Church teaches and includes information as to recent documents issued by the U.S. Bishops and the Vatican, the correct understanding of Church and State, what faithful citizenship encompasses and what to expect from our elected officials.

The series also talks about what clergy and laypeople can do to stay involved in the process, and the critical impact of this year's national election on public policy to Supreme Court nominees.
See this link for additional times and information.

Archbishop John Myers tells us about "Proportionate Reasons"

Fr. Greeley and any others who misconstrue the Church's teaching regarding those who support the genocidal murder of innocent children should take note - this is a teaching moment:
What are "proportionate reasons"? To consider that question, we must first repeat the teaching of the church: The direct killing of innocent human beings at any stage of development, including the embryonic and fetal, is homicidal, gravely sinful and always profoundly wrong. Then we must consider the scope of the evil of abortion today in our country. America suffers 1.3 million abortions each year--a tragedy of epic proportions. Moreover, many supporters of abortion propose making the situation even worse by creating a publicly funded industry in which tens of thousands of human lives are produced each year for the purpose of being "sacrificed" in biomedical research.
Now we get to the crux of the matter, which is explained in easy to understand terms (at least for those whose minds have not yet been clouded):
Thus for a Catholic citizen to vote for a candidate who supports abortion and embryo-destructive research, one of the following circumstances would have to obtain: either
(a) both candidates would have to be in favor of embryo killing on roughly an equal scale or

(b) the candidate with the superior position on abortion and embryo-destructive research would have to be a supporter of objective evils of a gravity and magnitude beyond that of 1.3 million yearly abortions plus the killing that would take place if public funds were made available for embryo-destructive research.
Now lest those of Catholic Action Network, and other such persuasions still not understand, Archbishop Myers will try and make it even more clear:
Certainly policies on welfare, national security, the war in Iraq, Social Security or taxes, taken singly or in any combination, do not provide a proportionate reason to vote for a pro-abortion candidate.

Many priests in St. Louis Archdiocese on Retreat

This week, a number of priests will attending a retreat with Archbishop Burke. Please pray for them that they will have a rewarding and spiritual retreat.

As if most of us didn't already suspect this...

Annulment Reform Needed, Vatican Official Says

Tribunals in some countries (notably the United States and Canada) are quick to provide annulments on uncertain grounds, while in other countries the faithful find it difficult to pursue even clear-cut cases of nullity. That was the testimony of Joaquin Llobel, a canon-law instructor at the Pontifical University of the Holy Cross and a member of the tribunal for the Apostolic Signatura.

Sunday, September 19, 2004

DVD Sales of “The Passion” Enrage Critics....

...about 100 theologians have now signed a statement condemning the film for being anti-Semitic.
Don't know who "they" are yet but now Friday's article in the St. Louis Review is starting to make to sense...
Commenting on this is Catholic League president William Donohue:

“The arrogance of the theologians who hate this movie is unsurpassed. Consider the comment, ‘we also acknowledge that many who see the film are honestly unaware of its anti-Jewish elements.’ Read: many who like the movie are just too dumb to pick up on its bigoted elements. But fear not, to the rescue come the learned ones.
Pretty close to how I felt after reading Fr. Heier's article...

Fr John Perricone Dinner and Talk

We attended the Fr. Perricone Dinner and Talk this evening. To begin Fr. Perricone looks just like he did when he did his series on EWTN, "The Most Glorious Act, Understanding the Mass".

Before Fr. Perricone's talk on "Put Not Your Faith in Princes", we were blessed to have Fr Daniel Oppenheimer, Prior of the Canons Regular of the New Jerusalem, deliver an update on what has transpired since last Sunday. They have found a place of residence in west St. Louis county on some acreage owned by the Archdiocese. They will not be too distant from those in the St. Charles county area and they intend to get moving immediately. More information will be forthcoming soon.

Fr. Perricone gave a brilliant talk on the Catholic faith, the faithful, politics, government, our responsibilities, the culture, and so forth. He quoted from several people, including Pope Leo XIII. We are reminded that we are to tranform our society and the world and not be tranformed by the forces of evil which are attempting to usurp anything and everything, including the Church. It was a powerful talk!

I can only imagine how wonderful it must be to be a student of his - his humor, knowledge, and fidelity all combine to make listening to him teach a really enjoyable and learning experience. (I imagine the same can be said of other local priests here in St. Louis (like Fr. Eugene Morris and Fr. Michael Witt) whose radio talks are indeed learning experiences and wonderfully presented)

I did not take notes, understanding that a CD will be made available of the talk in a week or so. I will let anyone interested know when it is finished.

Louisiana voters approve amendment protecting marriage

People are speaking out againt activist judges...
With 99% of precincts reporting, the amendment was winning approval with 78% of the vote, and support for it was evident statewide. Only in New Orleans, home to a politically strong gay community, was the race relatively close, and even there the amendment was winning passage. Turnout statewide appeared to be about 27% of Louisiana's 2.8 million voters, somewhat low for a state election.
It looks like the people of Louisiana knew exactly what they needed to do. They didn't buy this argument, either:
Louisiana already has a law stating that marriage can be only between a man and woman.
Without a constitutional amendment, a state is left wide open to judicial tyranny...


Sept 19- Before the Beauty of God.

The great painter Ingres gave his pupils this precious counsel, "Study beauty only on your knees."

Thus before the least objects possessing aesthetic value, this artist could have one adopt an attitude of prayer.

Was he wrong? What are the infintesimal drops of beauty that conceal realities here below if not reflections of God? In the same manner that the sun is reflected in a drop of dew, God is often manifested in a mere nothing to the soul who knows how to see Him.
What is to be said then, of the attitude one should have in contemplating God Himself? Assuredly Infinite Beauty does not reveal Itself to us here below without veils. God permits us to contact Him only through faith; earth is not the place to see Him face to face. But does not faith, if it is lively, disclose many things to me? What accounts for its lack of vitality in me if not my negligent spirit of adoration that has become routine, weak in its desire to possess its Adorable Master?

Must there not be more respect in my prayer, not so much an exterior respect perhaps as an interior effort to keep myself in recollection, rich in possession and in conquering love? Am I not too often inert, drowsy, without a living will? Young artists were counseled to kneel to study the beauties here below, and I dare to be so remiss in my adoration before the Beauty of the Most High?

"My God I believe that You are Infinite Beauty, that You deserve the most respectful adoration. Pardon my negligences in posture at prayer; give me a more active faith, a more ardent and more vital comprehension of what both the virtue of religion and my title of religious demand. If there is a place or a moment when I ought to merit this beautiful title in its fullness, it is when I am invited to become more closely united to You in prayer. Make of my prayers true prayers; of my devotion, true adoration; of my poor efforts to unite myself with You, a love that in its ever increasing veneration and fidelity is truly religious."
from the book Meditations for Religious
by Fr. Raoul Plus, S.J.

16th Sunday after Pentecost-Instruction on Keeping Sunday Holy

Is it lawful to heal on the Sabbath-day? (Luke XIV. 3.)

Why did Christ put this question?

Because the Jews, particularly the Pharisees, were so very superstitious in keeping the Sabbath, they would not recognize Jesus as the Messiah, while He healed on the Sabbath, which was really a good work. But, if the Jews were so conscientious, through superstition and hypocrisy, and considered the performing of an external good work on this day as a sin, some Christians, on the contrary, blinded by avarice and worldly pleasure, place themselves heedlessly, nay, insolently above the commandment to observe the Sabbath, and do not consider those things as wrong which are sometimes very grievous sins.

Consider, my dear Christian, you serve your body the whole week, you use all your powers for temporal business, to support yourself and your family, and God blesses you, if you work with a good intention. Now God chose one day in the week, Sunday, and in the year several other holidays, which you should devote to His service and the salvation of your soul; is it not, therefore, the greatest ingratitude to steal these days from God and your soul, and employ them to gain a transient good, or to indulge in vain, sinful pleasures? At certain times man gives rest to irrational animals, and you give the powers of your body and soul none of the rest they would and should find in quiet devotion, in prayer and meditation, in attending divine service, in receiving the holy Sacraments, &c. If you inquire whence come these shameful violations of Sundays and holidays, you will find that there is no other reason than love of gain and avarice, sinful love of pleasure, and often complete want of faith and confidence in God's providence. We wish to become rich by all means, and we do not reflect that. this will not happen without the blessing of God, and that wealth is a net, in which thousands entangle themselves to their eternal, perdition. We wish to live merrily and enjoy ourselves, but we do not consider that our life is only a time of penance, to attain that eternally blissful rest, of which Sunday is an emblem. We spend Sundays and holydays in idleness, vain conversations, buying and selling, servile work, or in still worse things, without experiencing the slightest scruple. But God will cover the violators of His sacred days with confusion and shame, (Malach. II. 3.) and permit many temporal evils to come upon them, as proved by daily experience. The blessing of God can never rest upon those who never care for it, but rather make themselves unworthy to receive it, by violating days consecrated to God. Let this be a warning to you.

PRAYER: O good Saviour! how manifest are meekness, and wisdom in all Thy words and actions! O, grant, that we may regulate all our actions in such a manner, that they may be acceptable to Thee and tend to the edification of our neighbor. Give us the grace to employ all the days, consecrated to Thee, for Thy honor and our salvation, that we may never raise ourselves above others, but follow Thee in all humility.