Tuesday Ear Tickler: Obama Surrogate Michael Sean Winters Smears the US Bishops

clock December 18, 2012 01:09 by author John |

The Tuesday Ear Tickler award is Solemn Charge’s weekly recognition of teachers who “Tickle the Ears” of those who “no longer endure sound doctrine”. In the spirit of 2 Timothy 4 2-4, this award serves to identify theological or doctrinal errors, dissent or hostility toward the Magisterium of the Catholic Church, or writing that undermines the purpose of each human soul – to know love and serve God so as to enjoy eternal happiness with Him in Heaven. I make no judgment of the writer’s intentions. Usually the winner of this award was raised in the 60’s so that right there is a mitigating factor toward their culpability for their actions. I do judge concrete actions and the quality of ideas, however…

Today’s winner is Michael Sean Winters, a critic of many of the Church’s teachings. Winters writes for the National Catholic Reporter, which officially endorsed women priests and called the Church’s teachings on the matter an “injustice”. This week, he has accused the US Bishops of playing politics and accosting them for standing up for religious liberty and against some of the nefarious initiatives of the President and his administration. (Winters’ comments in the red quote boxes, my comments in black.)

The President should fix the HHS mandate exemptions because doing so would be good politics for the Democrats, as I argued yesterday. Today, it is necessary, sad but necessary, to consider why President Obama may have a different political calculation and why the U.S. bishops need to look in the mirror when asking how they found themselves in this mess.

The President should fix the HHS mandate because it is a direct violation of our religious freedom. Who cares about politics? If Winters thinks that politics is the primary reason to remove the draconian mandate, he has his heart in the wrong place. This isn’t about strategy, this is about serving God. If you are forced to sin, you are left with either violation of the law or violation of your faith. The bishops found themselves in this mess because 40 years of poor catechesis left 50% of the American Catholic populate with so little understanding of their faith that they voted for a man that stands directly opposed to every major moral stance of the Church.

But, ignore [the achievement of electing the first black President] the bishops did. They greeted the incoming president with a postcard campaign about…..drumroll…the Freedom of Choice Act or FOCA. It mattered little that FOCA had never passed a committee vote in any Congress since it was first devised in the early 1980s as a fundraising device. It mattered little that it was clear the incoming President had bigger fish to fry. No, the bishops wanted to set down a marker and they did. This presidency would be viewed through one lens and one lens only, the pro-life lens. It didn’t matter that in forty-five years since Roe v. Wade, the Republicans had done precious little on abortion and the pro-life movement had become a cheap date for the GOP. Obama was the enemy.

They greeted him with a postcard campaign about the Freedom of Choice Act because he promised that passing it would be his first act in office. Removing all restrictions on abortion is an enormous assault on the morality of the nation. Winters should realize this, but he is more concerned about politics is seems. The pro-life lens is the most important lens. Our society has devolved into moral decay. There are so many fronts that could be opened in the war being waged for souls, but the battle for life is the most important and the most telling of our society. If we insist on allowing the slaughter of our own children, what does that say about our nation? The Republicans have not delivered on the life issue. That we can agree on. The problem, however arises when a candidate like Obama promises to expand the killing by removing restrictions on it. The life issue is not the only issue, but it is the most important. We cannot shift focus away from it until it has been resolved.

This was followed by the bishops’ decision not to support the Affordable Care Act. There were – and are – problems with the ACA. The concern most prominently voiced by the bishops, that the ACA would provide federal funding of abortions, required a very expansive reading of the text. Mind you, sometimes judges do render expansive readings of legislative texts. But, a court in Ohio has ruled that, on its face, the ACA does not permit federal funding of abortion. The bishops were more on target, as we have since learned, in their concern about the lack of statutory conscience exemptions in the law. And, they were undoubtedly correct that the failure to include undocumented immigrants in the law’s provisions was a serious lack. Nonetheless, the bishops seemed shrill and hysterical in their opposition to the ACA.

If Winters’ view is that the bishops are “shrill and hysterical”, what does that say about him and his newspaper whining about women’s ordination? The bishops were standing their ground on religious freedom and the right to life. The NCR was railing against the authentic teaching of the Catholic Church. The NCR prints shrill editorials from Obama surrogates castigating the Church for its stance on contraception. Coincidence? This article by Winters only solidifies my view that the NCR is simply a front for the Obama administration to influence wish-washy Catholics. Winters issues light criticism of the President, but like so many other Democratic apologists, he bends over backwards to minimize those criticisms and emphasize Obama’s concern for the poor and equality, even though Obama has stood by while poverty has risen and has stirred the pot of division on nearly every large politically divisive issue. Winters is losing any credibility he had left, as is the NCR. He knows why the Bishops have come out against Obama’s policies. It isn’t because he is a Democrat. It is because his policies are direct attacks on the Catholic Church. If a Republican proposed such evil policies, the Bishops would oppose them too.

The NCR has already been asked by the late Bishop of Kansas City to stop calling itself “Catholic”. They in their self-righteous arrogance have refused. They are a lie at best, and an agent for moral confusion. If you subscribe to the National Catholic Reporter, stop now. You are funding a campaign against the Catholic Church.

I hereby award the Tuesday Ear Tickler Award for December 18, 2012 to Michael Sean Winters.

Ear Tickler Award - Michael Sean Winters


Tuesday Ear Tickler – John McCarthy Spills Liberal Tripe Across the Page at the National Catholic Reporter

clock November 27, 2012 03:05 by author John |

The Tuesday Ear Tickler award is Solemn Charge’s weekly recognition of teachers who “Tickle the Ears” of those who “no longer endure sound doctrine”. In the spirit of 2 Timothy 4 2-4, this award serves to identify theological or doctrinal errors, dissent or hostility toward the Magisterium of the Catholic Church, or writing that undermines the purpose of each human soul – to know love and serve God so as to enjoy eternal happiness with Him in Heaven. I make no judgment of the writer’s intentions. Usually the winner of this award was raised in the 60’s so that right there is a mitigating factor toward their culpability for their actions. I do judge concrete actions and the quality of ideas, however…

Today’s winner is John McCarthy, an Obama surrogate and member of the oxymoronic group, “Catholics for Obama”. This week, McCarthy came out swinging against the bishops for defending the freedom of religion and against the magisterium as a whole for upholding the sanctity of the marital act. Leading off with the title, “Can Birth Control be Pro-Life?”, he conveys his lack of exposure to both science and the Catholic faith. Apparently, campaigning for Obama leaves little time for reading authentic Catholic teaching such as the “Theology of the Body”. (McCarthy’s comments in the red quote boxes, my comments in black.)

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recently released numbers that said abortion rates have dropped 5 percent between 2008 and 2009 -- an all-time low. For so many of us in the faith community, we have to ask: Why the decrease?

I'd love to say that the answer was because of our swift economic recovery and that women finally have the resources they need to bring children into the world. Unfortunately, this isn't yet the reality. The Washington Post finds an important correlation: "At the same time the abortion rate took a big drop, use of more effective contraceptives had recently increased."

Let’s make this clear since McCarthy doesn’t get it. Surgical abortions decreased because chemical abortions increased. The numbers he quotes look only at surgical abortions. They cannot however track abortions caused by the “more effective” birth control methods which cause implantation abortions. I’m going to chalk this up to ignorance, but that is an assumption on my part. I like to presume the best of people, and therefore I will not assume that he prefers one type of abortion over another.

The bishops aren't going to be moving anytime soon on the relationship between abortions and birth control -- probably because they're still fighting for religious freedom or something -- but the laity needs to start thinking more seriously about the issue.

Here we see a rather childish dig at the bishops of this country who courageously defend our religious liberty from the blatant frontal assault launched by the president and his administration. McCarthy feigns ignorance on the subject, with his “or something” remark, but the joke is on him. Clearly he doesn’t understand the issue, the rights and freedoms involved, or the enormity of the suffering inflicted on the Church and its members throughout the course of history by wicked governments. McCarthy, working for Obama of course would side with the President rather than the Catholic Church. The fact that a newspaper purportedly serving that Church would publish his liberal tripe is offensive and telling of the mentality that exists at the Reporter.

Is it more moral for a woman to use birth control than have an abortion? I certainly think most members of the laity (about 97 percent of who use birth control) would resoundingly agree. If it lowers the rate of abortions, should the church more actively advocate for prayerful use of birth control in family planning?

While these are certainly just a series of questions, the new information is important for the laity to consider as we tackle these larger issues. What are your thoughts?

Well, since he asked, I have a few thoughts on the matter. The first is that the end does not justify the means. This is not a matter of simply choosing the lesser of two evils as if one or the other of them is unavoidable. Surely McCarthy is not a moral theologian, but he should have been informed on this subject at some point by some faithful Catholic in his life. With his logic, we could simply forcibly sterilize everyone. Abortions would completely cease if that was the case. Is it more moral to sterilize than to abort? The Church is not concerned with the abortion rate. The Church is concerned with the salvation of souls. Abortion is murder. It is gravely sinful and destroys the light of Christ in the soul of the abortionist, the mother, and anyone who willingly cooperates with the abortion.

Here is the third option that liberals like McCarthy do not even acknowledge: self-control. Rather than throwing up our hands and assuming that people are unable to control their sexual impulses like rabbits, the Church in her wisdom preaches self-control. The will is not subordinate to the urges. There is a method of family planning that is both effective and moral: NFP. It requires self-control for a few days each month. Are we that devoid of willpower that we cannot control ourselves for a few days a month? Is it better that we violate the dignity of marriage and chemically abort children than we practice a little self-control?

I hereby award the Tuesday Ear Tickler Award for Tuesday November 27, 2012 to John McCarthy.

Ear Tickler Award for John McCarthy



Tuesday Ear Tickler Award: Catholics For Obama Confusing Consciences

clock November 6, 2012 01:02 by author John |

The Tuesday Ear Tickler award is Solemn Charge’s weekly recognition of teachers who “Tickle the Ears” of those who “no longer endure sound doctrine”. In the spirit of 2 Timothy 4 2-4, this award serves to identify theological or doctrinal errors, dissent or hostility toward the Magisterium of the Catholic Church, or writing that undermines the purpose of each human soul – to know love and serve God so as to enjoy eternal happiness with Him in Heaven. I make no judgment of the writer’s intentions. Usually the winner of this award was raised in the 60’s so that right there is a mitigating factor toward their culpability for their actions. I do judge concrete actions and the quality of ideas, however…

Today’s winner is a group known as “Catholics for Obama”, comprised of several politicians and shills for Obama who have either an improperly formed conscience or are outright sellouts for a quick political buck. That group’s oxymoronic title is akin to slogans such as “Vegans for Meat”, “Hamsters for Housecats”, or “Dentists for Coca Cola”. I have outlined several of the licentious claims and moral equivocation found on the website, which was designed primarily to allow people to violate their conscience in supporting the “First Gay President” as Newsweek crowned him.

Let’s get the obvious facts down first. Obama stands for unlimited abortion rights, including taxpayer funded abortion, abortion up to the last day of pregnancy, partial birth abortion, and abortifacient contraception. He is in support of homosexual marriage, which the Bible calls an “abomination”. He is also the president who has forced the Catholic Church to pay for contraception, sterilizations, and abortifacients in violation of their consciences. If a Catholic votes for Obama in accordance with their conscience, it would appear to me that they have an improperly formed conscience. If a person murdered 5 people, but gave money to 20 homeless people, would you consider them a good person? I wouldn’t. It follow then, that a person who advocates for the right to kill 1.3 million people each year could not be called a good candidate for president, no matter how much his social safety nets help people.

Caroline Kennedy of Catholics for Obama

“I have never had a president who inspired me the way people tell me that my father inspired them. I believe I have found the man who could be that president – not just for me, but for a new generation of Americans”. - Caroline Kennedy

I hate to break it to you Carline, but inspiration is empty if it is devoid of goodness and grace. As a Catholic, you should know that inspiration to the good is honorable and virtuous. Inspiration is evil if it promotes evil. Barack Obama promotes the culture of death. He is eyeball deep in the blood of unborn children. Shame on you Caroline Kennedy for promoting evil.

Marcy Kaptur of Catholics for Obama

“From his time as a community organizer in eight Chicago parishes, Senator Obama has demonstrated his appreciation for the Catholic Social Tradition and its focus on the common good.” – Marcy Kaptur

Marcy Kaptur sounds so shallow. Does she really not understand that the primary social justice issue is abortion? Does she really not know that abortion is murder or is she simply ignoring the fact in order to achieve a prestigious appointment in the Obama administration and reap campaign money from Planned Parenthood? Shame on you Marcy Kaptur for abandoning your conscience whether though malformation or disregard.

Senator Bob Casey of Catholics for Obama

“He has appealed, as Abraham Lincoln asked us to do many years ago, to the better angels of our nature” – Bob Casey

Bob Casey claims that Obama has “appealed… to the better angels of our nature.” If by better angels, you mean the angel of death, then yes, I believe Senator Casey is correct. Barack Obama is the most unapologetic abortion-minded president in the history of our country. If you support that man, I find it hard to believe that you are truly “Pro-Life” as Casey claims to be. Shame on you Bob Casey for muddying the waters, confusing Catholics and promoting the pro-abortion, pro-gay marriage, anti-Catholic Obama.

Douglas Kmiec of Catholics for Obama

“One of the things I kept discovering was that Obama was sounding more Catholic than most Catholics I know.” – Douglas Kmiec

Well, I can’t argue with that statement because I don’t know how many Catholics Kmiec knows. Perhaps that is an indictment of the people Kmiec associates with. Perhaps Kmiec doesn’t get out much. Perhaps Kmiec is being disingenuous. Regardless, that kind of moral equivocation is disgraceful. Kmiec received a comfy ambassador assignment as his 30 pieces of silver after providing cover for Obama-supporting Catholics in 2008. A man of his education should have a better-formed conscience than that. Shame on Douglas Kmiec for confusing the consciences of countless Catholics.

I hereby award the Tuesday Ear Tickler Award to Caroline Kennedy, Marcy Kaptur, Bob Casey, Douglas Kmiec, and the rest of the disgraceful “Catholics for Obama” group.

 



Tuesday Ear Tickler: Eric Miller Hails Obama as a "Pro-Life Hero"

clock October 22, 2012 21:52 by author John |

The Tuesday Ear Tickler award is Solemn Charge’s weekly recognition of teachers who “Tickle the Ears” of those who “no longer endure sound doctrine”. In the spirit of 2 Timothy 4 2-4, this award serves to identify theological or doctrinal errors, dissent or hostility toward the Magisterium of the Catholic Church, or writing that undermines the purpose of each human soul – to know love and serve God so as to enjoy eternal happiness with Him in Heaven. I make no judgment of the writer’s intentions. Usually the winner of this award was raised in the 60’s so that right there is a mitigating factor toward their culpability for their actions. I do judge concrete actions and the quality of ideas, however…

Today’s winner is Eric C. Miller, who makes the specious claim that Barack Obama is a “Pro-Life Hero”. Sorry, I should have warned you to put that hot coffee down before I conveyed Miller’s ridiculous canonization of the pro-abortion President. Any claims of personal injury as a result of that statement should be directed toward Mr. Miller. Anyway, without further delay, let’s get down to taking apart his argument and exposing the shallow thinking it espouses. (Miller’s comments in the red quote boxes, my comments in black.)

On October 3rd researchers at the Washington University School of Medicine published a study with profound implications for policymaking in the United States. According to Dr. Jeffery Peipert, the study’s lead author, abortion rates can be expected to decline significantly—perhaps up to 75 percent—when contraceptives are made available to women free of charge. Declaring himself “very surprised” at the results, Peipert requested expedient publication of the study, noting its relevance to the upcoming election.

First, we should assert that when this study mentions abortion, it fails to consider chemical abortions caused by pills/hormones that cause an “implantation abortion”, where the child is conceived, but cannot implant or dies shortly after implantation. Peipert asked for expedient publication because it had positive political connotations for the Obama campaign. If the results had been the opposite (which I now doubt could be in the realm of possibility given Peipert’s jubilant “expedient publication) I wonder if they would have been published at all.

As most observers surely know, the Affordable Care Act (aka “Obamacare”) requires insurance coverage for birth control, a provision staunchly opposed by most of the same religious conservatives who oppose legalized abortion. If Peipert is correct, however, the ACA may prove the single most effective piece of “pro-life” legislation in the past forty years.

Wrong! If being “pro-life” means that surgical abortions decrease while chemical abortions increase, then perhaps this statement could be true. The same reasoning could be used to call a fielding error by the shortstop a nice hit by the batter, or a doctor who cheated on his final exams in medical school a valedictorian and top-ranked surgeon. If you want to change definitions, then you can make any statement true.

Encouraging as these results are from both a women’s health and, ostensibly, pro-life perspective, they become even more so in light of their economic benefits. Author Brian Alexander notes that, according to a 2011 study from the Guttmacher Institute, “unplanned pregnancies cost the United States a conservatively estimated $11 billion per year,” money that may be saved simply by covering the cost of birth control.

Working from a false assumption allows you to claim that contraceptives are “pro-life”. If contraceptives are so powerful and positive in their societal impact, then we would have seen great decreases in unplanned pregnancies, STDs, and abortion since their widespread incorporation into society decades ago. The opposite has happened. As contraceptives have become more widely used, these societal scourges have likewise increased. One statistic that you will not hear mentioned by the likes of Miller or other culture of death apologists is the fact that the higher the devout Catholic population of a country, the less abortion, STDs and unplanned pregnancies that country has.

Peipert himself touted this benefit. “The way I look at it as a gynecologist with an interest in women’s health and public health and family planning, is that this saves money,” he said. “When you provide no-cost contraception, and you remove that barrier, you finally reduce unintended pregnancy rates. It doesn’t matter what side one is on politically, that’s a good thing.” Dr. James T. Breeden, president of the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists, called the data “an amazing improvement,” adding, “I would think if you were against abortions, you would be 100 percent for contraception access.”

Peipert has identified himself as a contraceptive pusher. Do you think that the “lead author” of a study’s personal bias would translate into skewed results? Pardon the pun, but that is surely a “conceivable” possibility. Hey I’m not the only one using lame puns. Peipert started it with his blatant reference to “removing the barrier” around contraceptives. While we are at this, if Dr. Breeden thinks that simply reducing abortions would make someone in favor of a morally corrupt way of achieving that end, then why not simply sterilize all the poor people? That would also reduce abortions. Both are morally unacceptable. That’s why. Repeat after me, “The end cannot and does not justify the means”.

But it remains the case that, by and large, those most opposed to abortion are not “100 percent for” contraception access. In fact, Peipert’s study comes at a time when more than thirty federal lawsuits have been filed by social conservatives bent on overturning the ACA’s contraception mandate. In many cases, these suits are “religious freedom” complaints, arguing that requiring religiously affiliated organizations to include contraception in their health care plans violates their rights of conscience. These claims are, in most cases, dubious given that the ACA offers a religious “accommodation” whereby the onus of contraceptive coverage is placed on insurance companies rather than organizations.

Notice the inflammatory language about conservatives? “Bent” Those federal lawsuits were filed because the Obama administration trampled on the right of conscience for Christians. How clueless do you have to be if you fail to grasp the reason that over 100 institutions are suing the Obama administration? This is the most insidious violation of religious freedom in recent memory. The dubious claims are found in the phony “accommodation” given by the administration, which basically states that religious organizations will still fund contraception and abortion-causing drugs, but the administration will pretend that isn’t the case and expect Churches to follow the lead. In a word, the policy is arrogant.

Such efforts by social conservatives to oppose the ACA betray both an unseemly partisanship and a nervous insecurity. It seems entirely plausible that, in the contraception mandate, leaders of these groups see not a violation of their own freedom so much as a weakening of their ability to dictate the terms by which their members live.

Miller claims the “social conservatives” are exhibiting an “unseemly partisanship” and “nervous insecurity”. There are two problems with that assertion. First, it is judgmental, assuming that the religious groups and private businesses have a political agenda when they are fighting for their most basic right – the right to honor God. Second, it would seem a “nervous insecurity” is warranted given the boot the President has firmly placed on the neck of the Church. Miller shows his utter ignorance of Church teaching by claiming that the Church dictates the terms by which their members live. The Church doesn’t do that, Mr. Miller. God does. The Church doesn’t want to pay for sin. It is a pretty simple concept, yet one that Miller cannot grasp.

But by addressing the problem of unintended pregnancy—rather than the politically fraught problem of abortion—“Obamacare” addresses the issue at its root. Though abortion has served as the central locus of the “culture war” for nearly forty years, it has always been a secondary concern—a problematic solution to a deeper and less sensational problem. By insisting on mere illegality, pro-life forces have turned a blind eye to the troublesome side-effects of illegal abortion even as they dedicated themselves to a largely symbolic political victory. And since the political divisions accompanying the debate have become so intractable, hope for a deliberative resolution has long ceased to exist.

Wrong! The root of the problem is immorality. If people didn’t devalue sex, we wouldn’t have unintended pregnancies. Liberals have promoted free and indiscriminate sex. The effects are plaguing our society. Illegalizing abortion will reduce abortions. Less abortion means less innocent children killed. It is a very straightforward principle. Saving lives isn’t symbolic. It is heroic. Shame on Miller for suggesting otherwise.

I am not so naïve as to believe that this conclusion is likely to be reached soon, or without further contest. Nor do I anticipate that Tom Minnery or Bryan Fischer will embrace President Obama as a pro-life hero. But it seems to me that, if conservatives really believe in the evil of abortion, they are morally obligated to embrace a policy that stands to limit it so impressively.

If Miller wasn’t so naïve, he would understand that the only force which morally obliges us is God. Shallow logic, hollow rhetoric, and empty insults do not constitute a moral obligation. Miller is ignorant of Church teaching, which precludes him from speaking intelligently about conscience, morality and religious freedom. He fills this hole in his argument with judgmental, condescending accusations devoid of merit. Miller is tickling ears and leading souls away from Christ.

I hereby award the Tuesday Ear Tickler Award for Tuesday, October 23, 2012 to Eric C. Miller.



What is the Culture of Death? (The Catholic Meaning)

clock October 19, 2012 19:29 by author John |

Skulls by Paul CézanneThe term “culture of death” is frequently tossed around in Catholic conversation. It has such a striking sound to it and describes so succinctly the attitudes of secular culture, that it has been picked up and used by the general population in recent years. While we may use the term and feel confident that it conveys our thoughts, we should pause a minute and define what the term actually encompasses.

Where did the Term “Culture of Death” Originate?

The actual term “Culture of Death” first entered common use after Pope John Paul II mentioned it several times in the 1993 encyclical, Evangelium Vitae. Evangelium Vitae was one of the timeliest and influential writings John Paul II produced during his pontificate. Evangelium Vitae is Latin for “the Gospel of Life”. In this encyclical, John Paul II wrote about the intrinsic value of every human life, which must be welcomed and loved from the moment of conception to the moment of natural death. Here is a quote from this great encyclical:

This situation, with its lights and shadows, ought to make us all fully aware that we are facing an enormous and dramatic clash between good and evil, death and life, the "culture of death" and the "culture of life". We find ourselves not only "faced with" but necessarily "in the midst of" this conflict: we are all involved and we all share in it, with the inescapable responsibility of choosing to be unconditionally pro-life.

John Paul II may have developed the phrases “Culture of Life” and “Culture of Death” from the Didache, a first or second century text of the Church. The Didache explains the “Way of Life” and the “Way of Death”.

What does “Culture of Death” Mean?

The Culture of Death is a very broad term, which describes evil behavior. It goes beyond the mere evil acts, however. In the deepest sense, it describes the attraction our culture has with sin, lust, and death. Our culture not only permits, but promotes abortion, euthanasia, murder, revenge, suicide (assisted or otherwise), war, capital punishment, contraception, human cloning, human sterilization, embryonic stem cell and fetal research, In Vitro Fertilization, homosexuality, promiscuity, infidelity, and divorce.

These proclivities lead to the destruction of life and its natural origins. They devalue human life, leading to an explosion of all types of sins. When we do not value human life, we do not value people. This leads us to sin by harming ourselves and others since we do not see the face of God in others. Here is what the Didache says about the “Way of Death”:

And the way of death is this: First of all it is evil and full of curse: murders, adulteries, lusts, fornications, thefts, idolatries, magic arts, witchcrafts, rapines, false witnessings, hypocrisies, double-heartedness, deceit, haughtiness, depravity, self-will, greediness, filthy talking, jealousy, over-confidence, loftiness, boastfulness; persecutors of the good, hating truth, loving a lie, not knowing a reward for righteousness, not cleaving to good nor to righteous judgment, watching not for that which is good, but for that which is evil; from whom meekness and endurance are far, loving vanities, pursuing requital, not pitying a poor man, not laboring for the afflicted, not knowing Him that made them, murderers of children, destroyers of the handiwork of God, turning away from him that is in want, afflicting him that is distressed, advocates of the rich, lawless judges of the poor, utter sinners. Be delivered, children, from all these.

Other Articles You Might Like:

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What is the Catholic Meaning of Humility?

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What are the 7 Spiritual Works of Mercy?

Matthew 10 and a Kick in the Pants for the Soldiers of the New Evangelization



Sr. Joan Chittister Has a Tantrum When Asked About Contraception, Abortion, Ordination of Women

clock October 9, 2012 07:08 by author John |

Sister Joan Chittister recently was interviewed by LifeSiteNews. It started off cordially, but after being asked about her positions on certain teachings of the Church, she went into a full-out tantrum. It is actually rather amazing how some dissidents will dance around a question when it is presented plainly to them. Here is an exerpt:

JC: Now we're into infallibility. We have two infallible teachings in the Church.
LSN: Okay. Which teachings are those?
JC: Well, I expect you to know because you're the one asking the question. And this doesn't fall in either of those.
LSN: Okay. Well that would be somewhere where we differ in our opinion.
JC: Is this infallible?
LSN: What?
JC: I don't know. Whatever you're talking about. What are the infallible teachings in question?
LSN: Well, the question about women's “ordination”, contraception…
JC: Ordination is a question of infallibility?
LSN: Absolutely.
JC: Oh, well then what happened to Peter and his mother-in-law?
LSN: What do you mean?
JC: Well, Peter had a mother-in-law.
LSN: Yes?
JC: Well, was Peter allowed to be a priest? What are we doing here?
LSN: Yes.
JC: We had married priests all the way to the 13th century. None of them were priests?
LSN: I'm not talking about married ordination. I'm talking about women's ordination.
JC: Ah. Women's ordination. I see. That's your problem. Women, right.

Read the rest here ==>



Catholic Bishops of Illinois to Produce Bulletin Inserts for Upcoming Election Season

clock September 19, 2012 11:02 by author John |

The Catholic bishops of Illinois will be distributing 4 bulletin inserts on the Sundays leading up to the election. Looking at the introductory insert, it appears the inserts will be rather clear and speak in unmistakable terms about the upcoming election and the importance of not supporting a candidate who is pro-choice, anti-traditional marriage, and anti-religious freedom.

Some bishops have already been using very clear language about the elections, including Bishop Robert Morlino (link to mp3 download of Morlino on the Drew Mariani show), Archbishop Chaput,  and Archbishop Lori.   So the question will then come down to a basic question: How many people will follow these principles? Few will be able to claim ignorance on this one.



Liberal Wisdom-Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities

clock September 14, 2012 07:37 by author John |

lib•er•al  ˈlɪbərəl,ˈlɪbrəl [lib-er-uhl, lib-ruhl]
adjective
1. favorable to progress or reform, as in political or religious affairs.
2. favorable to or in accord with concepts of maximum individual freedom possible, especially as guaranteed by law and secured by governmental protection of civil liberties.
3. favoring or permitting freedom of action, especially with respect to matters of personal belief or expression: a liberal policy toward dissident artists and writers.

Remember when this was what liberalism stood for? Remember when liberals fought for individual freedom? It’s been awhile, but at one point, I think this was actually the case. Nowadays, being liberal means advocating for the government to take away your freedoms so that they can educate, indoctrinate and compel you to do what they think is best. Let me give you a few examples.

Sex education used to be the responsibility of parents. Given that the family’s attitudes toward sex and sex education spring from the fundamental moral values of that family, it seems fitting that this responsibility should be given to the family. This is not the case anymore. Liberals have seized this realm and forced on our children in public schools their anything-goes mentality, belittling and dismissing the concept that people can and should wait until marriage to engage in the marital act.

The care for the health of your child used to be an inalienable right of parents. In most cases, it still is, unless of course there is the possibility that you do not submit to the wisdom of the liberals regarding “reproductive health”, which of course is translated into plain English as abortion and contraception.  If your child has a headache and needs a Tylenol, you must first give your permission before they can have it. If on the other hand, that same child becomes pregnant, and has been convinced that they should just “have it taken care of” with an abortion, you do not have the right to know in some states that are run by liberals. If you don’t want your child to engage in the marital act before marriage, but your child has been convinced by the liberals that you are “outdated, archaic, or bigoted against women’s health”, there is free contraception waiting for that child at school.

Parents have a choice now if they would like to avoid having liberals indoctrinate their children. They can pay double for the education of their children by handing over to the government the tuition necessary to send their child to public schools by paying their property taxes, and then paying tuition to a private school for the actual education of their child. The other option is to pay the tuition only once, but to take the responsibility for educating their child into their own hands and engage in homeschooling. This is a noble and difficult task, which many parents cheerfully undertake so as to give their children the values, knowledge, and properly formed conscience which those children deserve.

Enter the liberals. A proposal from the UN, signed by President Obama now seeks to subtly undermine the right of parents to educate their children in this way. Furthermore, the ambiguous nature of the language in the bill would have broad and woeful consequences for any parent raising their child in a way liberals disagree with.

CatholicCulture.org has this story:

The Home School Legal Defense Association (HSLDA) is urging the Senate not to ratify the United Nation’s Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (CRPD). President Barack Obama signed the treaty in 2009, and a Senate vote on ratification is expected this month.

“Article 7 of the UNCRPD gives government the ability to override every decision of a parent of disabled children if the government thinks that its views are in ‘the best interest of the child,’” said HSLDA Chairman Michael Farris. “This is a radical attempt to take away parental rights.”

The Vatican has also refused to sign this agreement due to the liberals inserting the mandatory phrase “reproductive health” into it. I think it is a requirement for any agreement passed at the UN to include that phrase, regardless of the subject the agreement deals primarily with. Here is the Vatican’s response to this:

We opposed the inclusion of such a phrase [reproductive health] in this article, because in some countries reproductive health services include abortion, thus denying the inherent right to life of every human being, affirmed by article 10 of the Convention. It is surely tragic that, wherever fetal defect is a precondition for offering or employing abortion, the same Convention created to protect persons with disabilities from all discrimination in the exercise of their rights, may be used to deny the very basic right to life of disabled unborn persons.

For this reason, and despite the many helpful articles this Convention contains, the Holy See is unable to sign it.

Now take a look at how clever the liberals are. If you oppose this article, you will be shouted off the stage as an evil person, who hates people with disabilities. Never mind the fact that the article takes away your parental rights, and promotes the evil of abortion. The article is titled “Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities”. If you oppose this agreement, that means you oppose what the title of the agreement says, right. Liberals just love straw man arguments. That is why they crafted this agreement in this way. They create a title that sounds noble and just, but subtly insert language that will work to take control of the upbringing of your children away from you if your child is disabled.

Now all they have to do is assert that little Johnny is disabled because he is left handed, or needs reading glasses or has a loose tooth. If he is “disabled” that probably means that you are no longer equipped to raise this child, and it is probably better off that the liberals do it for you. We are not quite there yet with the technology, but when we can determine all of these physical traits through a genetic test, then the liberals will be there, ready to monitor your pregnancy and check for these traits so that you don’t burden yourself or society with a child that is not “optimal”.

The only thing that can change the world for the better despite what the liberals say is prayer. Make that 2 things: prayer and votes. Get out there. Pray and vote!



Hobby Lobby Sues the Government of the United States of Obama Over HHS Mandate

clock September 12, 2012 13:42 by author John |

The arts and crafts supply store Hobby Lobby is suing the government over the HHS mandate. While they do not object to contraceptives, they do object to abortion-inducing drugs, as a matter of religious principle. It is good to see another business, particularly a large one jump into the ring to fight the draconian Obama administration over this attack on religious freedom and freedom of conscience. Read more...



Tuesday Ear Tickler: Christina Pelosi is Praying for a Schism

clock September 11, 2012 05:03 by author John |

Tuesday Ear Tickler: Christina Pelosi is Praying for a Schism

The Tuesday Ear Tickler award is Solemn Charge’s weekly recognition of teachers who “Tickle the Ears” of those who “no longer endure sound doctrine”. In the spirit of 2 Timothy 4 2-4, this award serves to identify theological or doctrinal errors, dissent or hostility toward the Magisterium of the Catholic Church, or writing that undermines the purpose of each human soul – to know love and serve God so as to enjoy eternal happiness with Him in Heaven. I make no judgment of the writer’s intentions. Usually the winner of this award was raised in the 60’s so that right there is a mitigating factor toward their culpability for their actions. I do judge concrete actions and the quality of ideas, however…

The Tuesday Ear Tickler award for this week goes to Christina Pelosi, writing for the bastion of truth and wisdom, the Huffington Post. It will be a bit difficult to dissect this article simply because the content is all over the map, she rambles, and her blog post goes on forever, but regardless, let us get started. Her comments are in red, mine in black. Pelosi starts out by comparing herself to the distraught George Bailey in “It’s a Wonderful Life”. She quotes his prayer from the movie:

"Dear Father in Heaven: If you're up there and you can hear me, show me the way. I'm at the end of my rope. Show me the way, God."

Aside from the obvious doubt about God’s existence expressed in the prayer, let us hope that she is actually sincere in the prayer, and not just using it for theater. She then swiftly moves into a diatribe against the Church for asking the nuns of the LCWR to be a little more Catholic and a little less shaman:

Apparently, dedicating their lives to caring for the sick and helping the poor wasn't enough. The Vatican accused them of promoting "radical feminist" ideas and demanded that they crank up the volume on opposing abortion and gay marriage. In short, the Vatican wanted to see less help and more hate.

Here we have straw man argument #1. Do you really think the Vatican wants to see more hate? This seems a bit over the top to me. Can anyone doubt the fact that they are drifting out of reach of Catholic identity? They promote everything except the authentic truth of the Church.

Pelosi apparently supports sending money to organizations that promote sinful activities like Oxfam. Then she goes into the tired old line about outdated and backwards policies:

The Church's backwards and outdated policies relating to women in particular and equality in general were nothing new; but its singular focus on these issues coupled with its demand that everyone else do the exact same thing was. So much for free will.

Perhaps it would surprise Pelosi to learn that free will does not entitle a person to sin. Freedom is the ability to do what you ought to do, not whatever you want to do. We live in a free country, but that doesn’t mean you can steal from someone. We are a society of laws, which ensure the protection of everyone. The same can be said for the Church. There are laws that guide us in getting to Heaven. In society, you can break the laws and suffer the consequences. The same can be said for your immortal soul. When you break a law of the Church, you are hurting someone – whether it be yourself or others, and by doing so, you damage your relationship with God. I mean this is like 2nd grade catechetics we are dealing with here. I am going to call this straw man argument #2.

Pelosi then meanders into the work that Melinda Gates is doing – you know, helping prevent AIDS by encouraging people to have sex and giving them a condom. What could go wrong there? Encouraging people to have sex whether protected or not will not prevent AIDS. Abstinence prevents AIDS. Giving people condoms causes them to be more promiscuous and the time will come when they want sex and don’t have a condom handy or the condom will break and so on. Here’s Pelosi’s take on it:

When questioned about the conflict between her foundation's work and the Church's position on contraception, Gates answered, "We're not going to agree about everything, but that's OK." How refreshingly reasonable.

Going back to the society of laws parallel – that is like saying well, I just robbed a bank, and I know the police aren’t going to agree with me about it, but that’s OK. People that are so nonchalant about sin, especially sin on a grand scale are going to have a lota ‘splainin to do at the pearly gates. On she rambles:

But the big question that remains is this: Where are we all going, anyway?

My sister used to say, "I'm a Kennedy Catholic," when people were surprised to find out that she was both a Democrat and a Catholic. The distinction between Democrats' and Republicans' respective brands of Catholicism has only gotten more pronounced in recent years, with social justice liberals filling the pews on the left side of the Church and conservative crusaders occupying the right. These days it's hard to believe we worship the same God, let alone practice the same religion.

I would agree with her that it is hard to believe we are worshipping the same God. In fact I am pretty sure that some of the nuns in the LCWR have acknowledged as much. Social justice liberals are not “filling the pews”. They are increasingly avoiding church and falling away from the faith.

For decades I prayed that the Catholic Church would evolve, but not anymore. Now I'm holding out for a schism, instead. We'll be the Social Justice Catholic Church and they can be the Conservative Catholic Church.

Now she tries to get cute about this by suggesting a schism. How nice. Yes, let us rip Christ’s Church apart rather than conform to His teachings. Lady, you can call your church anything you want, but unless you are in union with the 2000 years of Catholic Wisdom, then it will not be Catholic. Continuing on her rambling diatribe…

In the Social Justice Catholic Church, there will be no more of this nonsense over contraception. Once we've put that non-issue to rest, we'll be freed up to tackle other non-issues, too -- like marriage and gender equality.

In the Social Justice Catholic Church, everyone will be treated equally -- men, women, gay or straight. And everyone will be allowed to marry, even priests. And speaking of priests, no one will be disqualified from being one based on gender or sexual orientation. Priest shortage? What priest shortage?

I’m guessing that Pelosi hasn’t read the book of Romans yet. Particularly Romans 1:26-27, in which testimony is given against homosexuality:

“Therefore, God handed them over to degrading passions. Their females exchanged natural relations for unnatural, and the males likewise gave up natural relations with females and burned with lust for one another. Males did shameful things with males and thus received in their own persons the due penalty for their perversity.”

How dare I quote the Bible when defining sin? I’m wondering how she can rationalize that verse. This seems pretty clear-cut to me. If that doesn’t settle the question, we could look at 1 Corinthians 6:9-10, Exodus 20:14, Ephesians 5:3, Leviticus 18:22, Leviticus 20:13, or many others. The list goes on. So does Pelosi:

So, what makes the Social Justice Catholic Church different from any other inclusive and reasonable church, like the Unitarian Church, for example? Two thousand years' worth of rituals and a treasure trove of accessories, that's what. We're keeping all of the cool incense burners, water-sprinkler thingies, holy days, saints and sacraments. Oh, and the wine. We're definitely keeping the wine.

I was thinking the same thing. She sounds like she would fit right in with the Unitarians. Does she think that ignorance is a good quality? Water Sprinkler thingies? Really? I’m guessing she means the aspergillum. Does she want to keep all the holy days? Really? Even the Feast of the Chair of Peter? She may want to keep the sacraments, but she will have a rough go of it trying to make them valid, much less licit. By wine I gather that she is talking about the Precious Blood of Christ? If she starts a schism, it is likely that wine is exactly what she will have. We will still have the Precious Blood, along with the Precious Body, confession, and last rights when or if she comes crawling back when the loose lifestyles she supports cause incalculable suffering and emotional damage, not to mention the spiritual harm. Don't forget the spiritual harm. She is still going. Let's try to follow along for a little while longer. It is almost over - I promise...

Now let's talk facilities. I've been to the Vatican, and it's huge. We can divide that thing straight down the middle and still have plenty of room for both groups. The Conservative Catholics can have Pope Benedict, but I call dibs on John Paul II's crypt. I know JP Deuce made some mistakes (papal infallibility notwithstanding), but I liked him. I guess you could say he had me at (Polish trade union) solidarity.

If she knew anything about John Paul II, she wouldn’t want him. You know that whole thing about no women priests, he called it Ordinatio Sacerdotalis. He also put out some nice work on the dignity of Human life that would probably cause Pelosi to choke on the Kool-Aid she is drinking. That one was Evangelium Vitae. Back to Pelosi...

I may not live to see the day when everyone is treated with basic human dignity and enjoys access to modern medicine here on earth. But after the schism, at least I can take comfort knowing that's what awaits me in Social Justice Catholic heaven.

Basic human dignity is what the Church is pushing for. Articles like Pelosi’s don’t help in that effort. By allowing and encouraging people to live in sin, we are destroying their dignity and robbing them of eternal happiness in Heaven. Here she brings it home for us (finally):

And with marriage equality and contraception flowing freely, I’m betting Jesus, his 12 “go-to” guys and his home girl Mary Magdalene will all be there, too. With that guest list, you know the dinner parties in Social Justice Catholic Heaven will be as fabulous as they are endless – with bottomless glasses of wine and a place at the table for everyone.

By “marriage equality” I am guessing she means Church sanctioned sodomy? I’ll take the bet about Jesus being up there. He is already booked to headline the “Second Coming Tour” when he will not come as he did the first time – in humility, but as the Just Judge. And here we have the statement that sums up her view of the world. “a place at the table for everyone”. She is right about that – there will be a place at the table for everyone. The problem is that not everyone will want to sit at the table. That is what this whole life thing is about. You either choose to love God or you choose to love sin. You can’t have it both ways.

I hereby award Christina Pelosi with the Tuesday Ear Tickler Award for Tuesday, September 11, 2012