Friday, May 28, 2004

Update on the Catholic School Teacher's Union

The "Association of Catholic and Elementary Educators" is listed as another of the 'working groups' of Catholic Action Network. They have recently posted a letter to Archbishop Burke:

Most Reverend Archbishop Raymond L. Burke
The Catholic Center
4445 Lindell Blvd. St. Louis MO 63108

Dear Archbishop Burke:
As you are aware, the Association of Catholic Elemen­tary Educators (ACEE Local 1312) is an affiliated Local Union of the Carpenters' District Council of Greater St. Louis and Vicinity. Mary Chubb, President of Local 1312, has dutifully reported to this office that the spokes­man for the Archdiocese of St. Louis, Most Reverend Robert Hermann, has made certain remarks concerning Labor Unions in general and ACEE Local 1312 in par­ticular, that has me personally disturbed and concerned.

Statements such as ACEE Local 1312 is using "scare tac­tics" and stating that "unions are outmoded", "unions mean strikes", using "phony documents", "unions are not the way to go" and "unions are eroding" affect the integ­rity of not only ACEE Local 1312, but also this District Council, and all labor organizations.

Mrs. Chubb recently wrote to you, asking if Bishop Hermann's comments portrayed the St. Louis Archdio­cese's position on Labor Unions. If this is indeed the case, I would like to hear this from you, as the Archbishop of the St. Louis Archdiocese, rather than from one of your subordinates. Since you are new to the St. Louis area, as a professional courtesy, I have decided to give you the benefit of the doubts that Bishop Hermann has raised by his degradation of Unions, and slanderous remarks to­ward an affiliate of this District Council.

Perhaps, you should be made aware of the position of this District Council and its affiliated Local Unions. When­ever asked for assistance, financial or otherwise, the Car­penters' District Council has always been there to help. We support many efforts of many parishes within the Archdiocese with financial contributions, on a regular basis. The neighboring parishes of our District Council offices know they can always count on the "Carpenters" for support. This assistance comes from hardworking people, in forty- four counties hi Missouri, thirty-three counties in Illinois, and people in all walks of life, includ­ing the members of ACEE Local 1312. The Carpenters' Union represents "working people" and not just those who work in the construction industry. It is appalling to be slapped in the face with such remarks for the helping hand that has always been extended to the Catholic Church in St. Louis.

Bishop Hermann's response to Mrs. Chubb's letter asking for the position of the Archdiocese on Labor Organiza­tions remains unanswered. It only stated that many things were taken out of context, which is hard to believe since the two officers of Local 1312, Mrs, Mary Chubb, and Ms. Stephanie Funiaole, who also attended the meeting with Bishop Hermann, both clearly understood Bishop Hermann's message.

It is my duty, as the Executive Secretary-Treasurer of the Carpenters' District Council of St. Louis and Vicinity, to report matters such as this to the District Council Dele­gates who represent the 22,000 members from the thirty-nine affiliated Local Unions. As mentioned earlier, I also feel it is necessary to give you and the Archdiocese the benefit of the doubts raised by Bishop Hermann, and al­low you to respond to our question.

Are Bishop Robert Hermann's remarks and degrading comments about Labor Unions made to Mrs. Mary Chubb and Ms. Stephanie Funiaole the position of the Archdiocese of St. Louis?

Tuning is of the utmost importance in this matter. Hear­ing no response by the end of April will leave me no choice but to fulfill my obligations and report this heart wrenching situation, first to my members and then to all Labor Unions in the Community.

Terry Nelson
Executive Secretary-Treasurer
We had very few, if any, lay teachers in grade school when I was there many years ago. For the most part, all of them, the sisters and lay teachers did an excellent job. My stong foundation in the faith is largely the result of many very good religious sisters solidly committed to educating us when we were children.

Had so many not abandoned this noble endeavor to pursue and embrace eco-theology and other strange activities, perhaps this subject would not be pertinent. While there are, no doubt, many very good lay teachers involved in Catholic education, one wonders why they go into this field fully aware that the pay and benefits are different from that of public schools. How many are more concerned with providing a solid Catholic foundation for children as opposed to other reasons?

A call to Evangelize through the media, especially the Internet


Archbishop John Foley, president of the Pontifical Council for Social Communications, highlighted the need to "launch a special effort of evangelization through the media, including and perhaps especially through Internet." And he went on to express his view that "some media plan would be essential to make the contents of the Catechism better known and understood."
VIS Article.

The Holy Father Addresses Bishops from Wisconsin, Illinois, Indiana

Every Christian, in carrying out this prophetic mission, has taken on a personal responsibility for the divine truth revealed in the Incarnate Word, handed on in the Church’s living Tradition, and made manifest in the efforts of believers to spread the faith and to transform the world by the light and power of the Gospel (cf. Redemptor Hominis, 19).

This "responsibility for the truth" demands of the Church a forthright and credible witness to the deposit of faith. It calls for a correct understanding of the act of faith itself as a graced assent to the word of God which enlightens the mind and empowers the spirit to rise to the contemplation of uncreated truth, "so that by knowing and loving God, men and women may also come to the fullness of truth about themselves" (Fides et Ratio, Proemium). An effective proclamation of the Gospel in contemporary Western society will need to confront directly the widespread spirit of agnosticism and relativism which has cast doubt on reason’s ability to know the truth which alone satisfies the human heart’s restless quest for meaning. At the same time, it must firmly defend the Church as being, in Christ, the authentic minister of the Gospel and the "pillar and bulwark" of its saving truth (cf. 1 Tim 3:15; Lumen Gentium, 8).

For this reason, the new evangelization calls for an unambiguous presentation of faith as a supernatural virtue by which we are united to God and become sharers in his own knowledge, in response to his revealed word.

An essential element of the Church’s dialogue with contemporary society must also be a correct presentation, in catechesis and preaching, of the relationship between faith and reason. This will lead to a more fruitful understanding of the spiritual dynamics of conversion as obedience to the word of God, openness to "putting on the mind of Christ" (Phil 2:5), and sensitivity to that supernatural sensus fidei by which "the people of God, under the guidance of the sacred magisterium to which it is faithfully obedient, adheres indefectibly to ‘the faith which was once for all delivered to the saints’" (Lumen Gentium, 12).
Vatican Article.

Swiss say Pope must go

Seventy-four per cent of Swiss think the Pope should retire because of his age and poor health, according to a survey published by “L’Hebdo” magazine.
Does this mean that only about 25% of professed Catholics in Switzerland are actually Catholic?
In the survey of 1,025 people, just 17 per cent said the Pope - who celebrated his 84th birthday last week - should remain in office.

"People are focused on external matters like age and health. I would say we have a cult of youth,” (Dr Agnell) Rickenmann, (secretary-general of the Swiss Bishops' Conference) told swissinfo.
Of course they are...Rather than being focused on reaching heaven or praying for the Holy Father, let's concern ourselves with things of this world.
Respondents were also asked what Pope John Paul II was best known for.

In answer, 34.6 per cent named an “irresponsible” stance against condoms in the age of Aids, while 24.2 per cent answered that he had “strengthened” the Catholic Church. Twenty-five per cent had no opinion.
It seems that at least 35% are profoundly confused and perhaps ignorant in basic moral theology.
Theologian Hans Küng said the open letter was “absolutely correct”. He too, called for the resignation of the Pope, and said a new pontiff should push for major church reforms.
Hans Kung - Theologian? Of course, he is...

Article here.

Survey: Bishops Shouldn't Pressure Voters

About 71 percent of American voters believe U.S. Roman Catholic bishops should not publicly pressure Catholic politicians on abortion, according to a survey released Thursday.

When broken down by Catholic voters, 66 percent said the bishops should not publicly pressure Catholic lawmakers and 87 percent said the bishops' comments would not influence their vote in November.
Did they also ask these questions of those professed Catholics?
Do you attend Mass at least every Sunday?
Do you practice artificial contraception?
Do you go to Confession at least monthly?
Do you believe in the Real Presence of Christ in the Holy Eucharist?
Do believe in Hell?

No, I didn't think so...


God's Judgment Is Hope for Believer, Says the Holy Father

John Paul II says that for a believer, God's judgment should be a reason for hope, not fear.

"He is, indeed, judge, but he is also Savior; he condemns evil but recompenses faithfulness; he is justice but above all love," the Pope said during today's general audience.

"To his victory is associated the testimony of the martyrdom of Christians. There is a profound participation in the redeeming work of the Lamb on the part of the faithful who have not hesitated -- love for life did not deter them from death," the Holy Father said.
We are called upon to be martyrs, witnesses, for Jesus. We are called upon to be holy and, by our example, to lead others to Christ.

Zenit Article.

How low can we go?

LOGO, a new cable television network targeted at lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) viewers will be launched by MTV Networks, a division of Viacom Inc. (NYSE: VIA, VIAB) on February 17, 2005. The new channel will be advertiser-supported, targeting primarily gays and lesbians, 25-49, and will provide a mix of original and acquired programming that is authentic, smart, inclusive and open-minded.

Creating a network specifically for the LGBT community is something we've wanted to do for a long, long time, and it's an idea we feel is overdue," said Tom Freston, chairman and CEO of MTV Networks. "Despite our nation's progress on civil rights and the growing visibility of gay people in business, society and even in television programming -- what has been missing is a full-time home for this important and influential audience on television. We have big plans and hopes for LOGO and I'm thrilled to finally announce its arrival."
I believe that we are witnessing the collapse of America before our very eyes. Looking at our culture has deteriorated over the past 40+ years is something I would have never believed could happen.

We are in need of God's might hand of justice and mercy if we are to turn our society around from its headlong dash toward destruction.

Yahoo article here.

Cardinal Keeler weighs in on Politicians and Holy Communion

Addressing a national controversy for the first time, Baltimore's Cardinal William H. Keeler said he opposes an attempt by some bishops to politicize Communion and deny the sacrament to Catholic politicians who support abortion rights.

"Our position is ... Catholics have a responsibility to examine their own conscience and see if they are in a state that is appropriate for the reception of the sacrament," he said. "We don't need bishops to get into the act."
It is certainly a laudable goal to have Catholics examine their own consciences...but as a result of decades of failed catechesis, it seems that far too many professed Catholics are unable to do that. Until such time as Catholics are adequately educated in the faith, this policy will fail. Until Catholics are again able to properly distinguish virtue and vice, good and evil, morality and immorality, other measures are needed to illuminate that Truth which has been obscured by Satan and a decadent society, and sustained by the failure to educate the faithful.

Article here.

Thursday, May 27, 2004

This essay is adapted from his (Avery Cardinal Dulles) most recent McGinley Lecture, delivered at Fordham on March 2, 2004. In it, the Cardinal surveys the revival of apologetics over the past generation and discusses the strengths and limitations of reasoned argument in bringing people to the faith. He concludes that successful apologetics depends not only on argument but also effective witness on the part of the apologist.
Recent popes have been calling the Catholic Church to a new evangelization. To evangelize, we must allow the testimony of God, of the apostles, and of the Church to speak through us. This we cannot do with confidence and success unless we have assured ourselves that the testimony is credible and unless we are able to convince others that this is the case. Holy Scripture instructs us not to neglect apologetics. "Always be prepared," says the First Letter of Peter, "to give a defense (apologian) of the hope that is in you" (1 Peter 3:15). If we love Christ and cherish our faith, and if we wish to spread its saving influence, we will not shirk this important responsibility. The time is ripe, the need is urgent, for a rebirth of apologetics.
This is an excellent article which should be read by every budding Catholic apologist - actually every Catholic!

A 'Watchdog' Group Asks IRS to Revoke CO. Diocese Tax Exempt Status

Barry W. Lynn, executive director of Americans United for the Separation of Church and State, said the church should lose its tax-exempt status because it used church resources for political purposes.
Where has Barry been for past few decades while, primarily, minority pastors of various protestant denominations have used the pulpit to support por-abortion, pro-welfare, pro-entitlement, politicians?

Is the persecution just getting started?


HLI President's Statement on Scandal in the Catholic Church

Rev. Thomas J. Euteneuer, president, Human Life International, rebukes the 48 "Catholic" U.S. congressmen who claim being denied communion because of their pro-abortion stance will "revive anti-Catholic bigotry":

"The Lord Jesus had a term for those who professed to believe in sacred principles and then contradicted those principles by their public positions and actions: hypocrites. Every wretched sinner, public or private, who turned away from sin, always received the fullness of His mercy, but He could not and would not countenance the pharisaical posturing of those legalists who knew the meaning of the law and flouted it anyway. If terms like 'whitewashed tombs full of dead men's bones' and 'brood of vipers' say anything, they express the Lord's perfect contempt for such hypocrisy and those who think they know more than God.

"I have one very simple suggestion for all 'Catholic' Pharisees who want to be in the Church but not of the Church: spare us all your scandal mongering and get the hell out."
I had missed this press release and can honestly say that I feel much the same.

What must be distinguished in things of this nature are those who are honestly and legitimately confused about a particular Church teaching and those who boldly, proudly and, at times, publicly denounce the teaching of the Church making no effort to even try to understand it or accept it on faith.

Perhaps, now is the time to differentiate between those professed Catholics who are sinners even though they still make the effort to accept everything that is proposed for our belief with those others who are also sinners and who may rightly be called material 'heretics' because of the express rejection of the Church's teachings. This outright rejection separates one from the Church, the Mysical Body of Christ. Those who have been advised of the Church's teachings yet willfully embrace that which is contrary to the truth would be formally guilty of heresy. It is scandalous that these errors are permitted to occur in the Church with few, if any, consequences for the offending parties. Thic cannot possibly promote the doctrinal teachings of the Church, nor does it teach the meaning of true charity.

Maybe it is well past the time for Bishops to notify those publicly embracing a heresy, knowing it to be contrary to divine and Catholic faith, to be advised of the teaching of the Church on the matter at issue so as to prepare a case for the the use of Canon 1364 which states:
1. With due regard for can. 194, part 1, n. 2, an apostate from the faith, a heretic or a schismatic incurs automatic (latae sententiae) excommunication and if a cleric, he can also be punished by the penalties mentioned in can. 1336, part 1, nn. 1, 2, and 3.
2. If long lasting contumacy or the seriousness of scandal warrants it, other penalties can be added including dismissal from the clerical state.
One reason for a formal notification would be to educate the 'material heretic' so that a defense of Canon 1321 may not be used later. A person who has not prudently weighed the issues involved in their action is not punished. Canon 1321 reads:
1. No one is punished unless the external violation of a law or a precept committed by the person is seriously imputable to that person by reason of malice or culpability.
2. A person who has deliberately violated a law or a precept is bound by the penalty stated in the law or that precept; unless a law or a precept provides otherwise, a person who has violated that law or that precept through a lack of necessary diligence is not punished.
3. Unless it is otherwise evident, imputability is presumed whenever an external violation has occurred.
It does not seem to pastorally wise to allow the rampant dissent in the Catholic Church to go undisciplined. Archbishop's Burke's use of Canon 915 is a most welcome start, it seems, to cleaning up the Church and providing commendable pastoral leadership in our times. True charity requires these actions. It is not charitable to permit a brother to walk blindly toward the edge of a cliff without some sort of warning to prevent his inevitable death.

Hello, Kettle? This is Pot.

In recent weeks, what Fr. Andrew Greeley has labeled "the fringe of the hierarchy" has been busy overtime. The theological offspring of the peculiar ways of Bishop Fabian Bruskewitz of Lincoln, Neb., (where the real cathedral is a football stadium), and their spiritual kin, many newly in bishops' robes, have been grabbing headlines.

Bruskewitz is famous for, among other things, excommunicating Catholics in his diocese who belonged to a reform group that counted among its members several other bishops and hundreds of priests and nuns.
How strange it is for Fr. Andrew Greeley to be referring to Bishops Bruskewitz and Sheridan and Archbishops Burke and Chaput as the "fringe"...Of course, of all people, he should know what fringe is.

So, if I understand this 'logic', defending the Church, teaching the Faith, presenting the Truth, and sacrificing one's life to save souls is what constitutes being on the "fringe"?

Our good bishops and priests need our prayers more than ever. They are being attacked both from within and from the outside world for being faithful shepherds of Christ's children.

Those bishops and priests who are confused about what they must do also need our prayers so that they might be graced with God's truth and light and receive the strength to His will.

National unCatholic Distorter article here.
Archbishop Harry Flynn has said Rainbow Sash members will not be denied Communion, reserving such an action for "extreme" circumstances.
Just then, what are "extreme" circumstances, pray tell - or do any such "extreme" circumstances even exist in our day of enlightenment? To openly defy Church teaching on sexual sins, especially the abomination of homosexuality, and to openly approach the altar to receive our Lord's Body and Blood not only unrepentently, but in a public manifest display of arrogance and disobedience is worse than shameful. What is even worse than there are bishops and priests who allow such scandals to occur. This failure to discipline wreaks havoc on the faithful who, unless having properly formed their consciences, can only become more confused at what the Church teaches.

Some, however, will try to prevent the Rainbow Sash members from receiving Holy Communion. This is being done to protect the Blessed Sacrament from sacrilege, something that some others should do, but won't.

Story here.

Public Sin and the Reception of Holy Communion

Excerpted from a homily posted on the Wanderer:
We have bishops and priests now who refuse to deny the Eucharist to people who are in public sin. They (the people) refuse to make the distinction between private and public. For instance, if I knew that one of you was living a sinful life and you came up to the communion rail, I would have to give you Holy Communion because, number one, I do not know if you have been to Confession; or even if I know that you had not, to deny you Holy Communion would cause a scandal because it would draw the attention to other people that what you are doing privately is now being made public.

So unless I talk to you first and tell you, “If you come up to Communion, I will not give you Holy Communion,” the Church says that even though it is a sacrilege on your part to receive Holy Communion if you are in the state of mortal sin, I would still have to give you Communion.

However, if one is a politician who has a public record of being pro-abortion, pro-euthanasia, pro-human-cloning, if there is some other public exposition of your sin, like these unfortunate souls who show up all over the place with rainbow sashes telling people that they are practicing a homosexual lifestyle and demanding that they receive Holy Communion, at that point, it is a sacrilege on the part of the priest to give them Holy Communion because their sin is no longer private – it is now public.

But there are many who do not want to cause waves, and so they refuse to stand up for Jesus; instead, being politically correct is what is more important.

When it came to things that were wrong, Jesus Christ did not remain silent. He taught the truth; He did not wimp out. He did not water it down; He told people exactly what was going to happen to them if they did not change their lives.

...they (Jesus and the Apostles) continued to preach the truth right up to the point when they were thrown out of town. Would that we had priests and bishops today who would do the same.

We have to make sure that we are following the right shepherd.

We have a Good Shepherd, and none of us is going to be able to stand before the Lord and say, “But Father said it was okay. The bishop didn’t do anything about it, so it must have been okay.” The Lord will look at you and say, “I’ll deal with that priest or that bishop when they get here. You, on the other hand, knew better, and I’m going to hold you responsible for what you knew.” We know the truth. It is written in our hearts and on our minds; we are without excuse.
Great homily...Link here

Cardinal Law appointed head of St. Mary Major Basilica in Rome

Pope John Paul II on Thursday gave Cardinal Bernard F. Law an official position in Rome, naming the former Boston archbishop who resigned in the sex abuse scandal as head of a basilica.

Law will have the title archpriest of St. Mary Major Basilica, a largely ceremonial post often given to retired prelates.
Article here.

Wednesday, May 26, 2004

Instruction on the Festival of Pentecost

Rev. Fr. Leonard Goffine's

Ecclesiastical Year

Copyright 1880

What festival is this?
It is the day on which the Holy Ghost descended in the form of fiery tongues, upon the apostles and disciples, who with Mary, the Mother of Jesus, were assembled in prayer in a house at Jerusalem. (Acts II.)

Why is this day called Pentecost?
The word "Pentecost" is taken from the Greek, and signifies fifty. As St. Jerome explains it, this was the last of the fifty days, commencing with Easter, which the early Christians celebrated as days of rejoicing at the resurrection of the Lord.

Why is this day observed so solemnly?
Because on this day the Holy Ghost, having descended upon the apostles, the law of grace, of purification from sin, and the sanctification of mankind, was for the first time announced to the world; because on this day the apostles, being filled with the Holy Ghost, commenced the work of purifying and sanctifying mankind, by baptizing three thousand persons who were converted by the sermon of St. Peter; and because on this day the Church of Jesus became visible as a community to the world, and publicly professed her faith in her crucified Saviour.

Why did the Holy Ghost descend on the Jewish Pentecost?
Because on their Pentecost the Jews celebrated the anniversary of the giving of the law on Mount Sinai, and God would show by sending the Holy Ghost on this days that the Old Law had ceased and the New Law commenced. God also chose this time, that the Jews who on this day came together from all countries to Jerusalem to celebrate the Pentecost, might be witnesses of the miracle, and hear the New Law announced by the apostles.

Why is the baptismal font blessed an the vigil of Pentecost, as on Holy Saturday?
Because the Holy Ghost is the Author of all sanctity and the Fountain of baptismal grace, and because in the Acts (i. 5.) the descent of the Holy Ghost itself is called a baptism.

In the Introit of the Mass the Church rejoices at the descent of the Holy Ghost and sings:

The Spirit of the Lord hath filled the whole earth, allel.; and that which containeth all things hath knowledge of the voice, Allel., allel., allel. (Wisd. I.7.) Let God arise, and his enemies be scattered: and let them that hate him, fly before his face. (Ps. 67.) Glory etc.

COLLECT (Prayer of the Church)
O God, who on this day didst instruct the hearts of the faithful by the light of the Holy Spirit: grant us in the same spirit to relish what is right, and ever to rejoice in His consolation. Through — in the unity of the same, etc.

(Acts II. I-II.) When the days of Pentecost were accomplished, they were all together in one place; and suddenly there came a sound from heaven, as of a mighty wind coming, and it filled the whole house where they were sitting. And there appeared to them parted tongues as it were of fire, and it sat upon every one of them:. and they were all filled with the Holy Ghost, and they began to speak with divers tongues, according as the Holy Ghost gave them to speak. Now there were. dwelling at Jerusalem, Jews, devout men, of every nation under heaven. And when this was noised abroad, the multitude came together, and were confounded in mind, because that every man heard them speak in his own tongue: and they were all amazed, and wondered, saying: Behold, are not all these that speak
Galileans? And how have we heard every man our own tongue wherein we were born? Parthians, and Medes, and Elamites, and inhabitants of Mesopotamia, Judea, and Cappadocia, Pontus, and Asia, Phrygia, and Pamphilia, Egypt, and the parts of Lybia about Cyrene, and strangers of Rome, Jews also and Proselytes, Cretes and Arabians: we have heard them speak in our own tongues the wonderful works of God.

Why did the Holy Ghost come upon the apostles in the form of fiery tongues?
The appearance of fiery tongues indicated the gift of language imparted to the apostles by the Holy Ghost, and inflamed their hearts and the hearts of the faithful with the love of God and their neighbor.

Why did a mighty wind accompany the descent?
To direct the attention of the people to the descent of the Holy Ghost, and to assemble them to hear the sermon of the Apostle Peter.

What special effects did the Holy Ghost produce in the apostles?
He freed them from all doubt and fear; gave them His light for the perfect knowledge of truth; inflamed their hearts with the most ardent love, and incited in them the fiery zeal for the propagation of the kingdom of God, strengthened them to bear all sufferings and persecutions, (Acts V. 41.) and gave them the gift of speaking in various languages, and of discerning spirits.

(John XIV. 23-31,) At that time, Jesus said to his disciples: If any one love me, he will keep my word, and my Father will love him, and we will come to him, and will make our abode with him. He that loveth me not, keepeth not my words: and the word which you have heard is not mine, but the Father's, who sent me. These things have I spoken to you, abiding with you: but the Paraclete, the Holy Ghost, whom the Father will send in my name, he will teach you all things, and bring all things to your mind, whatsoever I shall have said to you. Peace I leave with you, my peace I give unto you: not as the world giveth, do I give unto you. Let not your heart be troubled, nor let it be afraid. You have heard that I said to you, I go away, and I come unto you. If you loved me, you would indeed be glad, because I go to the Father; for the Father is greater than I. And now I have told you before it came to pass, that when it shall come to pass you may believe. I will not now speak many things with you; for the prince of this world cometh, and in me he hath not anything. But that the world may know that I love the Father, and as the Father hath given me commandment, so do I.

Why is the Holy Ghost expressly called "Holy," since this attribute is due to each of the divine persons?
Because He is the Author of inward sanctity and of all supernatural gifts and graces, and therefore to Him is especially ascribed the work of man's sanctification.

What does the Holy Ghost effect in man?
He enlightens him that he may know the truths of religion and salvation, and the beauty of virtue; He moves him to desire, to aim after and to love these things; He renews his heart by cleansing it from sin, and imparts to him the supernatural gifts and graces by which he can
become sanctified, and He brings forth in him wonderful fruits of holiness.

What are the gifts of the Holy Ghost?
According to the Prophet Isaias they are seven:
1.The gift of wisdom, which enables us to know God, to esteem spiritual more than temporal advantages, and to delight only in divine things.
2. The gift of understanding, by which we know and understand that which our faith proposes to our belief; children and adults should pray fervently for this gift, especially before sermons and instructions in the catechism.
3.The gift of counsel, which gives us the knowledge necessary to direct ourselves and others when in doubt, a gift particularly necessary for superiors, for those about choosing their state of life, and for married people who live unhappily, and do not know how to help themselves.
4. The gift of fortitude, which strengthens us to endure and courageously overcome all adversities and persecutions for virtue's sake.
5. The gift of knowledge, by which we know ourselves, our duties, and how to discharge them in a manner pleasing to God.
6. The gift of piety, which induces us to have God in view in all our actions, and infuses love in our hearts for His service.
7. The gift of the fear of the Lord, by which we not only fear the just punishment, but even His displeasure at every sin, more than all other things in the world.

Which are the fruits of the Holy Ghost?
As St. Paul (Gal. V.. 22-23.) enumerates them, they are twelve: 1. Charity. 2. Joy. 3. Peace. 4. Patience. 5. Benignity. 6. Goodness. 7. Longanimity. 8. Mildness. 9. Faith. 10. Modesty. 11. Continency. 12. Chastity.
To obtain these fruits as well as the gifts of the Holy Ghost, we should daily say the prayer: "Come, O Holy Ghost, etc."

Why does Christ say: The Father is greater than I?
Christ as God is in all things equal to His Father, but as Christ was at the same time Man, the Father was certainly greater than the Man-Christ.

Why does Christ say: I will not now speak many things with you?
Christ spoke these words a short time before His passion, and by them He wished to say that the time was near at hand when Satan, by his instruments, the wicked Jews, would put Him to death, not because Satan had this power over Him, but because He Himself wished to die in obedience to the will of His Father.

Proposed Bread Recipes for the Holy Eucharist at St. Cronan's

I just came across these recipes. I am forwarding these to the Archdiocese. My guess is that they will result in invalid matter.

Recipe #1
Preheat oven to 375°
Sift together:
1.5 c whole wheat flour
1.5 c white flour
1.5 T baking powder
1 t salt
1 c water
.25 c honey
3 T cooking oil

Recipe #2
Preheat oven to 425°
Sift together:
1.5 c whole wheat flour
.5 c white flour
.5 t salt
.5 t baking soda
Cut in:
1.5 T butter or vegetable shortening
4-5 T honey
Add in small amounts:
up to .75 c cold water
I suppose if one is going to ignore or reject the liturgical laws and directives of the Church with regard to the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass, why bother with having valid matter. After all, is the Real, True, and Substantial Presence of Christ in the 'gathered community' or in the consecrated bread and wine?

Link here.

Cardinal Arinze Explains Reasons for Instruction on Eucharist

"The Greatest Treasure the Church Has"

VATICAN CITY, MAY 26, 2004 ( Cardinal Francis Arinze minces no words when it comes to the Blessed Sacrament.

Q: In the United States, but also in Europe, a great debate erupted over the consistency of Catholic politicians. There are several cases in which politicians declare themselves Catholics and then vote on laws and make statements in clear contrast with Church teachings, as is obvious in the case of the support of laws that facilitate abortion, euthanasia, homosexual marriages, and the spread of anti-life contraceptive schemes. Access by these public personages to the Eucharist creates scandal among the faithful. Does the instruction address this problem? What are the indications furnished on this matter by the dicastery over which you preside?

Cardinal Arinze: Moral theology and canon law explain which Catholics may and which may not receive holy Communion.

The instruction "Redemptionis Sacramentum" mentions some of these details in paragraphs 81 and 82, but does not examine the question you pose in a direct way. It is for the bishops in each diocese and country to explain to their people this discipline and the doctrine that gives origin to it.

"The Holy Eucharist is the greatest treasure that the Church has on earth: It is Christ himself," said the prefect of the Congregation for Divine Worship and the Sacraments.

"Is it any wonder if the Church is careful to protect and guard the celebration of this august mystery?" he asked.
Zenit Article.

Moral theology and canon law explain which Catholics may and which may not receive holy Communion. It is for the bishops in each diocese and country to explain to their people this discipline and the doctrine that gives origin to it. Some bishops get it...others, unfortunately, either don't or choose to ignore it while allowing the scandals to continue. May God have mercy on them!

June 18 - The Feast of the Solemnity of the Sacred Heart of Jesus

Friday, June 18, is the Feast of the Solemnity of the Sacred Heart of Jesus.

In honor of this great feast and in thanksgiving for the countless blessings Our Lord has showered on all of us, the Men of the Sacred Hearts of Jesus and Mary have again, this year, arranged to have a special Mass of the Sacred Heart at St. Rita's Church which is located at the Corner of North & South and Page Avenue in Vinita Park. It is about one-half mile east of I-170 on Page.

Mass will begin at 7:30pm, Friday, June 18. Fr. John Miller, C.S.C. will celebrate the Mass and give his homily on "Heart of Jesus, Substantially United to the Word of God".

All are invited to attend. Refreshments will be served after Mass in the church basement.

Now more than ever, we need to deepen our devotion to Our Lord and His Blessed Mother.

For those who have not enthroned the Sacred Heart within their homes and wish to do so, sign-up cards will be available after Mass. For more information, call:
Jimmy McGrew
President, St. Louis Chapter
Men of the Sacred Heart
(636) 240-2157

Catholics Against Sacrilege...

Where: Main entrance of the Cathedral of St. Paul
When: Sunday, May 30, at 11:15 a.m.
Why: Pray a Rosary of Reparation for all sins against the Holy Eucharist.

Maybe all who cannot attend in person can join in spiritually?


It's a matter of honesty

Archbishop Chaput addresses what is means to be "in communion", what it means to make the claim that one is Catholic.

It's a matter of honesty: to receive Communion, we need to be in communion

When we sin by theft, lying, adultery, pride, gossip, anger, envy, callousness to the poor, pornography or indifference, we do not live "in keeping with what Christ taught." We remove ourselves, by our actions, from friendship with God. That means we need to turn back to the sacrament of penance before we receive Communion. In fact, many of us today need a deeper devotion to confession simply to regain a basic understanding of grace and sin.

Likewise, if we ignore or deny what the Church teaches, or refuse to follow what she teaches, we are not "in communion" with the Catholic faith. We separate ourselves from the community of believers. If we receive Communion anyway, we engage in a lie.

Claiming to be Catholic and then rejecting Catholic teaching is an act of dishonesty and a lack of personal integrity. Worse, if we then receive Communion, we violate every Catholic who does believe and does strive to live the faith fully and unselfishly. And that compounds a sin against honesty with a sin against justice and charity. Again, as Justin Martyr said: "No one may take part (in the Eucharist) unless he believes what we teach is true."
Archbishop's Column here.

An 'interesting' local liturgy committee

I find it hard to believe that in 2004 some of these things are still happening in the Archdiocese of St. Louis. I came across this quite unexpectedly when doing some routine checking of some sites for updates.

So still, there are lay people giving homilies and proudly, it seems, posting the schedule on the web (Click on Pentecost) explaining when they will be 'preaching' on Sundays. Here are a couple for this Saturdy/Sunday, the Feast of Pentecost.
Subject: Pentecost
Start Date: Saturday, May 29 5:00PM
End Date: Saturday, May 29 6:00PM
Summary: Presider: G. Kleba
*Lector: L. Hiseczynski
Preacher: M. Uline
Euch Mins: L. Meyer & D. Delay
Sacristan: S. Collins

Subject: Pentecost
Start Date: Sunday, May 30 8:00AM
End Date: Sunday, May 30 9:00AM
Summary: Presider: G. Kleba
* Lector: M. Martir
Preacher: M. Uline
Euch Mins: R. McLarney & L. Newbone
Sacristan: S. Collins

*For readings, visit the Liturgy Committee Website:
I also found the liturgy committee minutes quite interesting. As I am not sure how long they will be posted, I thought I would include them here below. I have 'bolded' what I thought were interesting tidbits of info:
Minutes -- Liturgy Committee Meeting
13 May 2004 7:05p

In attendance: Mary Lou Gavan, Barb Guilds, Madonna Kuciejczyk-Kernan, Diane Gozdzialski, Bill Barrett, Gerry Kleba, Stephen Dalay, & Sean Collins.

Unable to attend: Marilyn Unline, Anne Perkins, Martha Stegmaier, Sharon McMullen Orlett, Jean Snyder, Eileen Heidenheimer, Cathy Hartrich, & Julia Wimmer.

The meeting was called to order by Sean and Mary Lou led us in prayer.

Sean briefly outlined the genesis of this committee: it comes in response to a need described at the last Parish Assembly. He said that much of the liturgy at Saint Cronan’s is quite good, but there is a need for organization. He thanked Marie Andrews for her extraordinary work in preparing the parish for Holy Week on short notice.

Sean then went on to describe the basic organization of the present committee:
(A) There is a need for a concerted effort to make consistent (in terms of inclusiveness) the language we use in our common prayer. To that end, he described a need for work on (1) the Lectionary, (2) the Presider’s Prayers, (3) General Intercessions, and (4) the Creed.

He suggested that the first three items could be taken up immediately by the committee, but that the issue of the Creed would be tabled for the time being. There was a brief discussion of our use of the Renewal of Baptismal Promises in lieu of a Creed in the meantime. Sean will continue working on the issue of language and will post texts (readings, intercessions, and prayers) on the liturgy committee’s website:

(B) The second issue that needs the committee’s immediate attention is the organization of the lectors and the Eucharistic ministers. The current schedule expires at the end of May. Mary Lou and Barb have volunteered to organize these ministries and to remind ministers of their dates of service. A sign-up system will be presented to the parish the weekend of May 15-16 – with Sean making an announcement at 5p and Barb doing so at 8a and 10a.

(C) Julia Wimmer has volunteered to organize bakers in the community to provide homebaked loaves for our weekend liturgies. Bill Barrett is interested in baking. Mary Lou and Louise Lears have also expressed interest. Gerry offered freezer space on the second floor of the rectory. We should evaluate how this system works in June and then decide whether to suspend our order of “store-bought” hosts.

(D) Stephen Dalay ahs offered to organize gardeners in the parish to provide cut flowers through the summer and fall months. Dr. Warren Wimmer has offered his green thumb to this effort. Others need to be recruited. Flowers should be delivered to the side door of the church (opposite the rectory’s side door) in water before 3:30p on Saturdays. The 5pm Sacristan will take them in to the church and arrange them. This system will begin on Trinity Sunday (June 6).

(E) Diane G. offered to organize a rota of Sacristans for all three liturgies. Our aim is to have set-up completed 30-minutes before the start of the liturgy, so as to minimize the distraction of “busy work” for any who arrive early, and to free Gerry (or another Presider) to greet the community as it arrives. Sean has posted a checklist on the website for sacristans – please e-mail him with any corrections/additions.

(F) There was a brief discussion of issues of Art and Environment. Sean outlined plans for Pentecost, Trinity and Corpus Christi (May 30, June 6, June 13 respectively.)

PENTECOST: Sean will build a mobile to suspend overhead – utilizing three new red silk banners being made by Annie Scheumbauer and lighted votive candles. Two pieces of red fabric will be processed in before the Gathering Song (perhaps as the choir/community chants the Taizé Veni Sancte Spiritus) – these pieces of fabric will be draped on the Ambo and the Altar. Red ribbons on the T-bar stands – placed outside the doors. Candles at each window. (See Art & Environment document for Pentecost on the website.)

The Pascal Season ends with Pentecost – the “Easter” drapes come down after Pentecost – and the Paschal candle moves to the font in the chapel. “Ordinary” Time begins with two Solemnities that follow Pentecost.

TRINITY: A much simpler plan focused on the Rublev icon of the “Three Visitors to Abraham and Sara.” The icon will be processed in lieu of a cross – and copies of the icon will be given to everyone during the homily. Louise Lears is preaching that day and will use the icon in her preaching.

CORPUS CHRISTI: Sean admitted to being a little stumped as to how to mark this Solemnity. He suggested prominent placement of home-baked bread and a flagon of wine in the chapel at the beginning of the liturgy. Madonna suggested that we ask members of the parish to write reflections on how they (we) are called to be the Body of Christ. Gerry seconded this notion, adding that it would be a terrific way to mark Ordinary Time by noting the ordinary ways we are called to be the Body of Christ.

Those present all seemed to support this idea. We’ll solicit the first 8-10 reflections in time to be printed, bound, and distributed on Corpus Christi (June 13) – and Gerry will invite others in the parish to contribute their reflections which will be collected and distributed later in the summer. If you are interested in organizing this project, please let Sean know.

(G) OTHER BUSINESS: Madonna suggested that there might be the need for some gentle catechesis in regards to the “space” around the baptismal font – so that it not be ignored or treated in a secondary way. She reminded us that when the church building was redesigned (16 years ago) the baptismal font was purposefully placed beneath the window where it would be bathed in light. Sean expressed the opinion that baptisms should occur there routinely, rather than moving the font to the front of the assembly. While two of the three parts of the rite could easily occur “up front,” when it came time to “get wet” the assembly should move to the font. Gerry agreed.

There was also some discussion of keeping clutter under control in the chapel. Mary Lou suggested a “Clutter Control Patrol.” It was agreed that this was something we, as a committee, should keep an eye on.

Young people in the community who are moving forward to confirmation will be blessed on Pentecost – and will work with the music minister to lead us in the final song that day – a terrific way for us to end the Paschal Season.

(H) No time was set for the next meeting. We’ll see how the committee shakes down before scheduling it. In the meantime, there’s plenty of work to do.

Sean forgot to mention dance for Pentecost. Madonna and Kathy Davis will organize this – to occur during the offertory. Jean Synder is also interested. Others are welcome.
This is just way too cool! Maybe I could forward them the link to Son Dance Ministries?
Gerry led us in prayer to conclude the meeting at 8:30p.
Respectfully submitted: smc
Surely, all of this has been cleared with the Office of Worship or Archbishop Burke?

And don't forget to check out some of the great Liturgical Resources that are listed, such as:
Call to Action
The Inclusive Liturgy Project
Catholic Action Network

*** updated ***
It appears that sometime in June the links/web pages were removed. Maybe its all underground now and no longer PUBLIC on the web?

Cardinal Mahony welcomes Rainbow Sash Movement Members

Cardinal Mahony of the Archdiocese of Los Angeles has notified the Rainbow Sash Movement that his Cathedral will welcome Rainbow Sash Members as part of the Catholic Family to his Cathedral, and when RSM members present themselves for Communion they will recieve It.

Cardinal George has instructed those in his archdiocese to deny the Holy Eucharist to those who would be so bold as to approach the altar for Holy Communion. Yet Cardinal Mahony encourages those who public manifest and promote grave sin to "gather faithfully together"...
Cardinals George and Mahony both support the Teaching of the Catholic Church, however, one promotes discrimination at the Eucharistic table, and the other does not.
Unfortunately, the RSM is wrong on this count. Cardinal Mahony does NOT support the teachings of the Church.

Link here.

Tuesday, May 25, 2004

Adoration-for-Vocations Campaign Under Way

From Zenit:
A vocations resource Web site ( has launched a campaign of Eucharistic adoration and letter writing inviting the laity to show gratitude for priests and to pray for their perseverance.

Cardinal George: No communion for homosexual protesters Sunday

Gay Catholics who plan to identify themselves by wearing a rainbow sash in church Sunday should be denied communion, according to a memo Cardinal Francis George has written to all pastors in the Archdiocese of Chicago.

[T]he cardinal wrote that wearing the sash indicates disagreement with church teaching that gay sexual relations are sinful, and therefore those who wear the sash should not receive communion.

[Cardinal] George added that "the policy of the U.S. Council of Bishops is not to give Communion to those wearing the sash. If they come to Communion like every other member of the Church, without the sash which is a sign of their opposition to Church teaching, they may receive. This is also the policy of this Archdiocese."
Chicago Sun-Times Article here.

And the issue with pro-abortion politicians and others is...what?

60 Parishes to close in Boston

There are presently 357 parishes in the Archdiocese of Boston in 144 surrounding cities and towns. The reconfiguration actions announced Tuesday May 25, 2004 will bring that number to 292 parishes. The changes will result in 60 actual church closings.

International Pilgrim Virgin Statue of Our Lady of Fatima Visits the Diocese of St. Louis

With Permission of Archbishop Raymond Burke, June 1-21

Scheduled Itinerary:

Our Lady of Fatima (Florissant) 8 AM- 8 PM, June 1

St. Ferdinand (Florissant) 7 PM Mass, June 2- 7 PM, June 3

Regina Cleri (St. Louis, 63119) 7 AM- 7 PM, June 4

St. Elizabeth of Hungary (Crestwood) 5 PM Mass, June 5- 12 PM, June 6

Immaculate Conception (Arnold) 6PM-10PM, June 6

St. Joseph’s Cottleville (St. Charles) Program 7-9 PM, June 7

St. Vincent de Paul (Perryville) 8 AM, June 8- 8:30 AM, June 9

Immaculata (Richmond Heights) 12 PM, June 9- 12 PM, June 10

St. James (Catawissa) 7 PM, June 10- 7 PM, June 11

St. Louis Basilica (Clayton) 8 AM Mass -5 PM, June 12

St. Raymond’s Maronite Church 8PM –12 PM, June 13

St. Matthias (Mehlville) 2PM-5PM, June 13

St. Anthony of Padua (High Ridge) 8 PM, June 13-7 PM June14

St. Michael the Archangel (Shrewsbury) 8 AM Mass- 7 PM, June 15

Our Lady of Lourdes (Washington) 5 PM- 9 PM Mass, June 16

St. Agnes Home (Kirkwood) 4:30 PM, June 17- 3 PM, June 18

St. Clement (Des Peres) 6 PM, June 18- 3 PM, June 19

Passionist Monastery (Ellisville) 5 PM, June 19- 5 AM, June 20

St. Agatha (St. Louis) 7 AM- 5 PM, June 20, and processing to…

St. Francis de Sales (Soulard) 6 PM, June 20- 8 PM, June 21

The history of the International Pilgrim Virgin Statue begins in 1946. At that time, after the youth of Portugal attended a Congress in Fatima, they took the Statue from display in the Cova on pilgrimage to Lisbon. As they walked the route they stopped at the towns and people gathered to pray. In Lisbon when they entered the cathedral, the miracle of doves occurred. Many other phenomena also occurred inspiring devotion and inspiring the fervor among the people.

The statue was returned to its place in the Cova de Iria but many people wished for a visit in their own communities. The Bishop asked Sr. Lucia in a letter about sending the statue on tour. Sr. Lucia responded with a letter suggesting that the new statue, just then being made, by the famous sculptor Jose Thedim be used as a pilgrim statue. The Bishop agreed and, on May 13, 1947, this new statue was blessed and named the International Pilgrim Virgin Statue of Our Lady of Fatima.

Almost before it began its journey, so many places wanted her visit that it was realized a second statue should also be blessed. This second statue made also by Jose Thedim was completed and blessed by the Bishop of Fatima on October 13, 1947 (Exactly 30 years to the day after the great miracle of the sun which was to draw the worlds attention to Mary’s Message.) His Excellency remarked that this would be the Western statue and that the two statues would travel about until finally they could enter Russia.

The Bishop of Fatima entrusted the Western statue to Mr. John Haffert, who later became the cofounder of the Blue Army of Our Lady of Fatima in America. It entered the United States, through Canada at Buffalo, New York, on December 8, 1947. (December 8th being our patronal Feast Day of the Immaculate Conception.) At Buffalo 200,000 people lined the streets and welcomed Our Lady on that occasion. To fulfill the mandate of the Bishop to travel, teach and inspire, Mr. Haffert assigned the first custodian, Fr. McGrath of Canada. The statue has always had a full time custodian and has never stopped traveling in its entire 52 years. Succeeding Fr. McGrath, was Fr. Breault, and others have continued to the present time.

The miracles, favors, and signal graces were so numerous from the very beginning that even the Holy Father, Pope Pius XII, reflected on them in his famous radio address to the pilgrims at Fatima, May 13, 1951. He recalled having crowned the Fatima statue in 1946: “In 1946 we crowned Our Lady of Fatima as Queen of the world, and the next year, through her pilgrim image, She set forth as though to claim Her dominion, and the miracles She performs along the way are such that we can scarcely believe our eyes at what we are seeing.”

Physical cures attributed to the presence of the statue have been documented many times. The changes in _expression and coloration, and even the pose of the statue have been reported innumerable times. But, the important miracles are the spiritual cures and gifts Our Lady bestows. The sudden conversion of a stubborn heretic is a good example. Another important miracle is the enlightenment of someone who has resisted the idea of statues or the idea of praying to saints. The spiritual miracles are infinitely more valuable than the things we can see, touch, or measure.

Miracle of Tears, July, 1972, New Orleans, LA

During Her tour of the New Orleans diocese, the statue shed tears on numerous occasions. This was the first time that the press reported widely the miracle of tears from the IPVS. Although it is known that tears had run from Her glass eyes numerous times before, none of those had gained much attention. This time the press began to report it, large crowds flocked around and even Archbishop Hanann was asked to comment by reporters. He took the statue and had it investigated. That was the first time it was discovered that the moisture was human tears and also the first time photos began to circulate. The statue has shed tears very frequently ever since.

We believe these manifestations of 1972 are related to the tragic legalization of abortion. Abortion was being debated and decided at that time, just before the infamous January 22, 1973 Supreme Court decision.

The miracle of tears is something that is often reported. It happens in more than one way. Frequently, an individual sees tears on the statue while others at the same time do not. Perhaps this is mystical and not physical. But other times all present see the same thing and the tears can be wiped away causing dampness on the cloth. This then is a physical miracle. Regarding the number of times it has occurred, most go undocumented, and almost all go without publicity. Therefore, although we know it has shed tears dozens, and probably hundreds of times, only a few have been published. (We have photos of the statue crying July 24, 1995, in Highland, IN)

The Collapse of the Church in the West: 1960-2000

By FATHER G.H. DUGGAN S.M. - Christian Order Magazine, February 2004

It is a fact, now evident to everyone, that the Church in the West - that is, the countries of Western Europe, the United States, Canada, Australia, New Zealand - has in recent decades suffered a severe setback; severe enough to call it a collapse.
In his book The Battle for the American Church, the historian Monsignor George A. Kelly, has the figures up to 1979 for the Church in the United States. They were then horrendous and there has not been any improvement in the intervening years. Nor is the statistical picture notably different in the other countries that, with the United States, constitute the West.
Some of the causes of this collapse are listed:
Denying the Real Presence and the Immortal Soul
The Catechetical Revolution
The Moral Collapse (such as the rejection of Humanae Vitae)
The Liturgical Revolution

The collapse of the Church in the West has greatly weakened the whole Church in her never-ending conflict with the world. The road to recovery will be long and arduous. The principal means, and the most effective, at the disposal of the individual Catholic to hasten the dawn of a brighter day are, as always, prayer and sacrifice.

Father Duggan is a distinguished philosopher-theologian. He writes from New Zealand.

U.S. Catholics Exhorted to Recover Devotions

John Paul II recommended that U.S. Catholics recover "devotions of popular piety" as a means of personal and communal sanctification.

"A renewal of these devotions will not only help the faithful in your country grow in personal holiness but will also act as a source of strength and sanctification for the Catholic Church in the United States," the Holy Father added.
Zenit Article

Worcester bishop shocks gays with `evil' statement

The new leader of the Catholic Diocese of Worcester stunned gay rights supporters by writing in a church newsletter that Catholics, especially public officials, pushing to legalize same-sex marriage are ``in cooperation with evil.''

"Oh, my God. Wow," gasped Marianne Duddy-Burke of Boston Dignity, a group of gay Catholics. "It's an appalling statement on so many levels. It disregards a civil servant's duty to the entire community."
Yes, Marianne, the truth can be shocking and hard to accept, most especially for those who are in need of truth.
After recognizing gays and lesbians as ``brothers and sisters in the human family,'' the note ends with a bombshell: ``Moreover, it must be pointed out that Catholics, especially public officials, who willingly and with approval facilitate the legal sanctioning of same-sex unions are involving themselves in cooperation with evil.''

‘Lukewarm’ Is the Wrong Temperature

In the wake of a recent reiteration of Catholic teaching with regard to abuses of the sacrament of Holy Eucharist, there has been a flurry of commentary from bishops. Not all of it, in case you haven’t noticed, is encouraging.

Cardinal Theodore McCarrick of Washington, D.C., has made no bones about what he would do if a rabid pro-abortion Catholic approached him for Holy Eucharist – he would give the body of Christ to this individual. No question about it. In fact, he has recently stated, “I have not gotten to the stage where I am comfortable in denying the Eucharist.”

Comfortable? What kind of a notion is that? What do you mean, comfortable? Don’t we all remember how Catholics got the miracle of Holy Eucharist in the first place? It had little to do with comfort. It had everything to do with Christ suffering undeniable pain as he hung on the cross for three hours before He died. Comfortable?

Christians are called by Christ to follow Him, to imitate Him; and that can mean being very uncomfortable – particularly in the midst of a godless, secular culture.

And if you're still missing the point, there is the statement Pope John Paul II made just last year, in his encyclical Ecclesia de Eucharistia:

“The judgment of one's state of grace obviously belongs only to the person involved, since it is a question of examining one's conscience. However, in cases of outward conduct which is seriously, clearly and steadfastly contrary to the moral norm, the Church, in her pastoral concern for the good order of the community and out of respect for the sacrament, cannot fail to feel directly involved. The Code of Canon Law [915] refers to this situation of a manifest lack of proper moral disposition when it states that those who “obstinately persist in manifest grave sin” are not to be admitted to Eucharistic Communion.
Commentary by Judie Brown here.

Missouri Citizens to Vote on Homosexual 'Marriage'

But when is the question????
State lawmakers voted May 14 to put the constitutional amendment for the marriage ban to a public vote. But Secretary of State Matt Blunt, a Republican, has not yet done so because, he said, he has not received official, signed notice from legislative leaders.

Gov. Bob Holden and Nixon, both Democrats, have argued that a signed notice is unnecessary and that Blunt has received enough documentation of the legislative vote to set the election in August, which Nixon says was the intent of lawmakers.

“They felt, given the circumstances in the country right now, the people of Missouri needed a chance to speak on this question,” said Paul Wilson, an assistant attorney general who argued the case before the appeals court Monday. “The governor is giving them that chance at the earliest possible date, and that's the August election.”

Putting the issue on the November ballot could affect general election races, including those for governor and president. A strong turnout for the gay-marriage amendment could help Republican candidates.
Article here.

Introduction to the “Sexual Underworld” within the Church

...many Catholics within the Joliet Diocese and elsewhere...are frustrated and unsure of what to do regarding the liturgical abuses and heretical teachings being forced upon them by their bishop’s action or inaction. The faithful are constantly reminded of their obligation to contribute their hard-earned dollars to fund the destruction of their parishes and schools. They are pressured to pay for the creation and operation of special “ministries,” which in some cases, are used as a tool to undermine Church teachings and promote the “gay agenda.” While all this is going on, many of their 9 to 5 priests are involved in sexual relationships, living in lavish homes, and taking “Gay Cruises”, while the local Church disintegrates.

Catholic Charities in Massachusetts - adoption to homosexuals?

We at MassNews feel compelled at this time to tell about a Franciscan Brother on Cape Cod, Br. Alexis Brugnolo, who has sent messages around the Internet this month that Catholic Charities in Massachusetts is giving many children for adoption to homosexuals. Apparently, one-half of their children go to homosexuals.
Br. Brugnolo writes: One is a young mother of Fall River, who approached catholic charities a few years ago, while Archbishop Sean O'Malley was Bishop of Fall River.
She requested an application form for adoption; and was shocked to
find that this form allowed two males or two females to adopt as the
prospective parents. She inquired immediately to the Catholic Charity Office in Fall River which issued her the form, and asked if it was the policity of Catholic Charities Fall River to give children in adoption to sodomitic couples. The answer she received was that they "do not discriminate".
The Sacred Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith has spoken explicitly about this, yet many choose to ignore the Church.

Link here.

Midwest Bishops go to Rome...

Cardinal Francis George and other Roman Catholic bishops from Illinois, Indiana and Wisconsin will travel to Rome today to deliver their "state of the diocese" reports to Pope John Paul II.
Bishops from Illinois, Indiana, and Wisconsin are on their way to meet with the Holy Father. Article here.

Monday, May 24, 2004

Lineamenta Provides Precis On Eucharist — For Bishops

The Lineamenta for next year’s 11th General Synod of Bishops, "The Eucharist: Source and Summit of the Life and Mission of the Church," provides a precis of Church teaching on the Eucharist, rooted in the teachings of the Apostles, the Fathers of the Church, particularly St. John Chrysostom, the Council of Trent, Vatican II, and the encyclicals of Popes Pius XII, Paul VI, and John Paul II.

This synod, Jan Cardinal Schotte, general secretary of the synod, recently explained, is unusual in several respects, particularly because Pope John Paul II called for it after he released his latest encyclical, Ecclesia de Eucharistia, which reflected his grave concern that too many Catholics, including priests, do not understand what the Eucharist is. But, he said, in the preparation for this synod, the Pope also wishes to lead bishops to "take a pastoral inventory" on what Catholics believe about the Eucharist, to report on how well bishops are teaching Church doctrines on the Eucharist to their people, and to assess whether or not some liturgical celebrations cause a "disorienting situation for the faithful," among other items.
Wanderer Article by Paul Likoudis.

Kerry Shouldn't Take Communion, Says Canadian Bishop

"Despite repeated admonition from bishops, first private, then public, he adamantly insists that he will continue to receive Communion when he attends Mass no matter what. … By sharing in Communion, Catholics testify that they are in fundamental union of heart and mind. On fundamental life issues, Kerry is clearly offside."

John Paul II Cautions About Factions Within Church

Zenit Article here.

Holy Father's address to Bishops of Texas, Oklahoma

The full text of the Holy Father's Address is here.