Saturday, May 22, 2004
CAN GLOBALISM BE CHRISTIANIZED ?
Our Pope thinks it can and keeps trying to influence the power brokers. But he seems to be fighting a losing battle. Here is another attempt from Zenit. Click on the May 19 link to get the story.
Pope Describes Church's Idea of a United Europe
Includes Extension of EU to the Continent's Geographic Limits
VATICAN CITY, MAY 19, 2004 (Zenit.org).- John Paul II expressed the Church's desire for a truly united Europe that respects human and Christian values and exemplifies peace and prosperity.
That desire includes the enlargement of the European Union to the Continent's geographic limits, the Pope said.
The Holy Father expressed this idea Saturday when he received in audience the participants in the 4th Meeting of the Postsynodal Council of the Synod of Bishops' 2nd Special Assembly for Europe.
It was the first meeting held by the cardinals and prelates since the promulgation of the apostolic exhortation "Ecclesia in Europa," and the May 1 enlargement of the European Union, which now has 25 members. ...
If he is not successful in Christianizing globalism, will he have helped to inaugurate the reign of the anti-Christ?
Thanks to a reader for sending it in.
E-MAIL FROM LEE PENN
Check this out .... pedophilia and coverup in the 1600s in an Italian religious order.
Fast forward to 2002 ... same song, 400th verse. Across continents and centuries, nothing has changed.
But never mind, go back to sleep. After all, priestly sex abuse is only a problem in America, due to the press, the greedy lawyers, and the Catholics who disobey the ban on contraception. Maybe it's all due to Vatican II, anyway. And those who sleep can take a nice, long cruise down De Nial river.
Sins of the fathers
Karen Liebreich invites us to draw comparisons across the centuries with her account of paedophile priests in 17th-century Italy, Fallen Order
Saturday May 22, 2004
Fallen Order: A History
by Karen Liebreich
384pp, Atlantic, $16.99
Pope John Paul II has kept noticeably quiet on the subject of Catholic priests who sexually abuse children. But in 2002, after high-profile cases in Europe and the United States, he was moved to acknowledge the problem - briefly.
Paragraph 38 of his annual Holy Thursday letter alluded to priests who succumb to "the most grievous forms of the mysterium iniquitatis [mystery of evil] at work in the world". Such behaviour puts other priests in a bad light, said the Pope, without mentioning what it does to the victims.
Fallen Order focuses on sexual abuse within a religious order in 17th-century Italy, and the attempts to cover it up. The book invites us to draw comparisons across the centuries, and it is infuriating to see how little the rhetoric of the Catholic Church has changed in these matters. Its aim can still seem to be to make abuse less terrible by couching it in euphemisms, especially Latin ones, then attributing it to outside forces, rather than to the criminal behaviour of a responsible adult....
[Go to the website to read the rest of the story.]
A commenter below picked up on the Process Church of the Final Judgment. Kennedy devotes an early chapter in the book to this group and its association with Paul Shanley. One of the sources listed is this Fortean Times article which gives a good overview of The Process. Kennedy quotes this article in the book. The DeGrimstons, who founded the cult, were former members of the Church of Scientology. They used L. Ron Hubbard's methods when founding their Compulsions Analysis.
Hubbard's association with Crowley and Jack Parsons is documented on the web.
As the commenter below indicates, this cult worshipped Jehovah, Jesus, Lucifer and Satan as the four co-equal dieties. Their inner circle, something all occult groups seem to have, was called The Omega.
Paul Shanley and another priest accused of molestation, Bernard J. Lane, who ran the Alpha Omega House for wayward boys, are both discussed in connection with The Process. Kennedy writes:
It is not clear to what extent Shanley was involved in the Process Church, but it is certain that he exchanged details about potential recruits with Processians for his "youth ministry." (p. 63) ...many erlier NAMBLA members in New York City were also members of the Process Church. (p. 67)
Shanley's involvement with NAMBLA is also discussed in this chapter.
One thing I left out of yesterday's blog which I should have included is the fact that William Kennedy is Catholic. As the book cover indicates, "Kennedy "is a lifelong Catholic who loves his Church and is sickened and angered by its corruption: he writes not to attack the Church, but to purify it. Every American who is shocked by the pedophilia scandal, every Catholic who knows that his Church is seriously ill and prays for its healing, should read this book." I would second that last comment. The book certainly puts into context what we have been reading in the news.
Friday, May 21, 2004
ABU GHRAIB WORSE THAN 9/11 ?
By Joseph D'Hippolito
May 20, 2004
In the spirit of Jonathan Swift, perhaps the Bush Administration should consider placing the Vatican on the list of rogue states that support terrorism.
Such a modest proposal might arouse Rome from the esoteric philosophizing, latent anti-Americanism and attitude of appeasement that characterizes the Holy See?s response to jihadism and Islam.
The Vatican?s foreign minister, Archbishop Giovanni Lajolo, became the latest prelate to embarrass himself and his superiors with absurd public remarks. On May 12, Lajolo told the Roman newspaper La Repubblica that the Abu Ghraib scandal hurt the United States more than the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks....
Go to the website to read the rest.
E-MAIL FROM LEE PENN
A knowledgeable friend, who lives in Fatima, has confirmed the main points of this story for me. The Spirit of the United Religions has taken the shrine of Fatima.
The critical boundaries crossed during the service that was reported in Portugal on May 5 are these:
1. Allowing non-Christians to pray at the altar of a Catholic church ... an altar that ought to be reserved for the celebration of the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass, the Divine Liturgy.
2. The decision by the Bishop of Leiria-Fatima and the Rector of the Shrine of Fatima to allow the Hindu priest to clothe them with with a Hindu "priestly shawl," a garment adorned with texts from the Gita, Hindu scripture.
Be certain that - given the controversy last fall over opening Fatima to multiple faiths - that Rome knows what is going on here.
If you get a blank page, click the "home page" link on the right.
Malachi Martin was correct in his assertion that Lucifer's Lodge exists within the Church of Rome. Unfortunately, there are no quick answers as to how to deal with this horrible state of affairs. Lucifer's Lodge is an ongoing problem. It is still in operation and should be of major concern to people of goodwill everywhere.
With that statement, William H. Kennedy closes his investigation into the sexual abuse crisis in the Roman Catholic Church.
One searches for the words..."shocking"? If only I were shocked. Things I was not prepared to believe of priests have turned out to be true. The time to be shocked passed with the reading of Goodbye, Good Men; Amchurch Comes Out; Lead Us Not Into Temptation.
"Inaccurate"? But I don't think that it is inaccurate. Some of the material in the book had already surfaced in research I had done over the last several years. Kennedy uses quotes from newspapers like the Boston Globe. The accounts of priestly sexual abuse that he uses to tell his story are familiar. Half way through reading the book I checked some of the unfamiliar sources and found them credible. He does use a few marginal sources which I would like to check further.
"An exaggeration" then? I've read too many of the press releases to even think it for a moment. Much of this has already appeared in the Boston Globe and elsewhere. Kennedy merely connects the dots.
In trying to sum up Kennedy's book, only one word comes to mind..."diabolical." And just maybe that is the only word that needs to be said.
A trio of priests--Fr. Malachi Martin, Fr. Al Kunz, and Fr. Charles Fiore--became aware that something was seriously wrong in the Catholic priesthood and began collecting data. William Kennedy came a bit later to join in the investigation, making it a foursome. Today all but Kennedy are dead. Fr. Kunz's death in 1998 was sudden and bloody; and the crime has not been solved. Fr. Fiore's health as well as Fr. Martin's declined immediately after the murder. Within 16 months Fr. Martin was dead, and Fr. Fiore was not well enough to continue the investigation. He died in March 2003. Kennedy states that a mutilated calf also found the morning that Fr. Kunz's body was discovered is the calling card or signature of Satanists.
Kennedy discusses the OTO and Aleister Crowley, along with Jack Parsons, AMORC, Rose Croix. He also mentions a cult called The Process Church, Scientology, Charles Manson, and Fr. Paul Shanley and so much more. The Processians were active in the Harvard Square area in the 1960's, which means they were active in Paul Shanley's stomping grounds. Later they moved to California near the headquarters of Charles Manson. There is some controversy over how much contact Manson and Shanley had with these cultists. What Kennedy does point out is similarities in rituals and some evidence of exchanges between them.
In fact similarities are the basis of what he presents. Essentially he offers information about which the reader is asked to draw his own conclusion. He shows, for example the similarity between the Alpha Omega House, a retreat house for wayward and displaced youth, and the Devil's Room at Loftus Hall. Both rooms, he believes, were used for ceremonies which included sex magick; and he explains how sexual rituals are intended to make the practitioner a god, and in some cases Jesus Christ come again.
He talks about the abuse of nuns which has not come out in the press, and a priest who concentrated on abusing young women who were studying to enter the religious life. He paints a rather different picture of Magdalene laundries than the one recently released in the press.
He speaks of ceremonies that took place in Catholic convents which are reminiscent of Rosicrucian ceremonies; and tells stories of prostitution within convents, lurking in the history of the Catholic Church. I have not yet had time to verify this.
He develops a very interesting line of reasoning centered on cults from the early days of the Church which preached a married Christ who had children, attempts to show how this heresy remained alive down through the centuries, and where it surfaces today, including in The Da Vinci Code.
There is a great deal in this book that will prompt further investigation. If he is correct in all of his assertions, it will explain a lot of what we are seeing develop in the culture. It will not exhonorate the Vatican, however. Once again it appears that Rome knew. Rome did nothing.
I was surprised that he did not touch on Eugene Vintras and on the Mariavites. Perhaps he had to keep the book to a certain length and decided to leave them out. Neither did he discuss the Paris occult revival. Possibly for the same reason.
What he has done is link the details of news reports to historical information and in that way tells his story. The bulk of the book is quoted material from a great variety of sources. It's a hard book to put down.
I wonder if anyone who had not done some investigating into the occult would take Kennedy seriously. It helps to already know about Crowley and Parsons and their relationship with Scientology, and a little about Masonic obediences, and the Mormon Church before picking up the book. Otherwise this seems just too fantastic to be true. I would expect those bloggers who poke fun at conspiracy theories to poke fun at this book. They would be wrong. Had the abuse scandal not been broken by the Boston Globe there is little chance this story would have been told because no one would believe it.
In the next several days, if all goes as planned, I will be looking at his sources on the web, which means that most likely the usual blogging won't get done. But we'll have to see how that works out.
has been stormy. One band of storms arrived at 2:45 a.m. and didn't depart until 5:45. Another came through around 4:30 this afternoon, turning on the street lights which never went out again. It looked like the end of the world on the Cleveland news tonight, when they showed the cloud over the entire city skyline and a blackness in the distance that looked like an impenetrable curtain. More are possible tonight.
Needless to say, storms disrupt blogging time.
Thursday, May 20, 2004
IT CAME TODAY...
While I was getting dinner, UPS dropped it off. The book I've been anticipating since first learning of its existence. And so I opened it instead of watching the perogi's cook. It was hard to say in leafing through it whether this was going to be a noteworthy book or not. And then I started reading the Introduction.
The perogis were nearly burned. I started the coffee maker without putting the pot in place and nearly had a coffee-covered kitchen floor. And I couldn't keep my mind on dinner conversation. And that's just the result of reading the Introduction.
So if this blog is quiet for awhile...if there are no new posts up until later in the week...you will know what is occupying my attention.
BULGING SEMINARY IN DENVER
Patrick Madrid has a blog at Envoy Encore linking the article on the seminary expansion in Denver. Two separate seminaries are actually involved:
The first-floor classrooms of the nearly $4.7 million expansion will be used by seminarians from Redemptoris Mater Archdiocesan Missionary Seminary and St. John Vianney Theological Seminary. There are 81 men studying at the two seminaries.
Redemptoris Mater is an NC-Way seminary, isn't it? I wonder how the number (81) breaks down?
A CERTIFICATE OF DE-BAPTISM
is provided by the National Secular Society, in case you ever want a complete transformation into a life of sin. I didn't actually look at the certificate since my computer kept flashing the warning that the script was harmful.
The Church of Virus BBS, offers links to the above as well.
UK-SHOPPING-WAREHOUSE, Anarchist Cook Book Downloads website offers a link to the certificate. So do a few other websites.
Positive Atheism goes one better and also offers a "Baptism Removal Service" courtesy of the Humanist Association of Canada. They have a webpage dedicated to De-conversion stories.
Is a De-Baptism Certificate a license to sin? Hmmm...Somehow I suspect that God isn't in the business of revoking His promises (or in this case it would be His burdens). I think I'll skip the De-baptism Ceremony, thanks anyway.
And thanks to a reader for the tip on this one!
NEW WORDING FOR MARRIAGE VOWS IN ITALY
The bishops have approved new wording for the marriage vows. No longer will Italians "take" their spouse. Now they will "receive" their spouse. The idea is that this will help eliminate the concept of possessing the spouse.
So now, I guess, when interaction with the spouse is breaking down, a mate can brood, "Cripe, and I did this to myself!"
WITH KERRY, IT'S NOT JUST ABOUT BABIES ANYMORE
PORTLAND, May 19, 2004 (LifeSiteNews.com) - US Presidential candidate John Kerry, who has angered Catholics for his endorsements of abortion and same sex unions, added euthanasia to the list while campaigning in Oregon. While on a break in Portland, Kerry was interviewed by Steve Law for the Statesman Journal.
In language that closely mimics the rhetoric of abortion supporters, Kerry says that Oregon's euthanasia law is a "complex" issue best decided locally. "I think it's up to the states to decide what they're going to do there. It's a very complicated, thorny, moral, ethical issue that people wrestle with. And I don't think it's the government's job to step in," he said.
Now I want to know something. I want to know if it's moral to release misguided politicians from their misery?
Our Lady of Fatima, pray for us!
HUMAN CLONES NOT HUMAN BEINGS
I've written about it, but never thought it would happen in my lifetime. But it didn't take 'em long to figure out that this product of technology--while it might look human, and walk like a human, and talk like a human if it were allowed to develop--cannot be used as a commodity to fix other humans with medical problems if it's been called a human being. The slave class is being generated in the scientists laboratory, folks. And we thought Frankenstein was a ghoul.
BUENOS AIRES, May 19, 2004 (LifeSiteNews.com) - A group of Argentinean scientists is calling on the their government to overturn a 1995 law banning all human cloning. Committee of Ethics in Science and Technology has urged the use of cloning to produce human embryonic stem cells for research into diseases.
In a statement, Alberto Kornblihtt, a representative of the Committee, said that the product of human cloning is not a human being. He made the distinction between 'therapeutic' and 'reproductive' cloning calling reproductive cloning "socially" unsafe. He said, "Even if the technical problems are solved, reproductive cloning is unjustified from a medical and social point of view." The Committee was set up in 1991 to advise government in areas of science ethics and is also urging the Argentinean government to reconsider its support of a UN proposal to ban cloning for any purpose and to allow cloning for research.
The next step would be to overturn the notion that reproductive cloning is "socially" unsafe. There is no way to ground that designation in accepted moral principles. It's only a matter of time.
Our Lady of Fatima, pray for us!
Blogger credit to a reader.
A LITTLE TIFF IN COSTA RICA OVER THE EARTH COUNCIL
From the National Post:
Global maestro of sustainable development Maurice Strong is in a pickle down in Costa Rica. The government in San Jose is chasing one of his most important global policy instruments, the Earth Council, for US$1.65-million, charging the council with the "wrongful sale" of land which the government had granted it for a headquarters. As a result, the council has left the island.
In the wake of the Rio Earth Summit in 1992, Mr. Strong -- perennial United Nations player-referee and now a key advisor to Prime Minister Paul Martin -- set up the Earth Council as a "watchdog" on the process he had started himself. It was to keep up the pressure for Agenda 21, Rio's doorstop socialist wish list, as well as for global restrictions on carbon emissions (which brought us the horrors of Kyoto).
The council was also to seed myriad new non-governmental organizations to spread the gospel of sustainable development, and push the notion of an "Earth Charter," which had been rejected at Rio.
As the location for this beacon of radical environmentalism, Mr. Strong chose Costa Rica, well known for its status as eco-tourist paradise and tax haven. In 1996, the Earth Council was granted land on which to build a new headquarters, with the provision that the land would have to be returned if the council shut down or moved on.
Intriguingly, the funds to build the new headquarters were to come from part of the proceeds of issuing Costa Rican Carbon Bonds, a Swiftian emissions trading instrument which entitled the bearer to emit CO2 if he paid the government of Costa Rica not to torch its own rain forest. Hence "value" would be created literally from thin air, with the proceeds to flow to part of Mr. Strong's master plan to save the world from capitalism. At least capitalism as practised by others.
There are more details at the website.
Wednesday, May 19, 2004
DAN BROWN LEFT SOMETHING OUT
He decided it was just too controversial according to an article at FoxNews.com.
Dan Brown said that when he wrote the best seller that dissects the origins of Jesus Christ and disputes long-held beliefs about Catholicism, he considered including material alleging that Jesus Christ survived the crucifixion.
While speaking at a benefit Tuesday for a New Hampshire writers' group, Brown said the theory is backed by a number of "very credible sources," but that he ultimately decided it was too flimsy.
"For me, that was just three or four steps too far," he told the crowd of more than 800 people.
He admits in the article that Holy Blood, Holy Grail was his source, and says that he is writing a sequal, a clue to which is contained in the cover of The Da Vinci Code:
Brown's discussion of his book, during which he answered audience questions, was a rare public appearance for him. He has declined most requests for media interviews this year, saying he is focusing on writing the sequel to his book.
He said the new book, set in Washington, D.C., would focus on the Free and Accepted Masons, a secretive fraternal organization. He said the architecture in Washington is soaked in symbolism and plays a major role in the novel. He also said the dust jacket of "The Da Vinci Code" contains a code that reveals information about the sequel.
48 HOUSE CATHOLICS WARN BISHOPS' STANCE COULD SPARK BIGOTRY
Forty-eight Roman Catholic members of Congress have warned in a letter to Cardinal Theodore E. McCarrick of Washington that U.S. bishops will revive anti-Catholic bigotry and severely harm the church if they deny Communion to politicians who support abortion rights.
The letter's signers, all Democrats, include at least three House members with strong antiabortion voting records.
"For many years Catholics were denied public office by voters who feared that they would take direction from the Pope," they wrote. ". . . While that type of paranoid anti-Catholicism seems to be a thing of the past, attempts by Church leaders today to influence votes by the threat of withholding a sacrament will revive latent anti-Catholic prejudice, which so many of us have worked so hard to overcome."
The three-page letter, dated May 10, was sent to McCarrick because he heads a task force of U.S. bishops that is considering whether, and how, the church should take action against Catholic politicians whose public positions are at odds with Catholic doctrine.
CATHOLIC SCANDAL IN THE MOVIES
It was inevitable, wasn't it? Our scandal would be turned into a movie. CruxNews links the story from the Boston Globe.
CYBER-CHURCH MEETS CYBER-SATAN
The world's first online church has been forced into an urgent rethink after computer hackers logged in as "Satan" and disrupted services with four-letter expletives and racist remarks.
The Church of Fools said Wednesday it had shut to outsiders its pulpit, lectern and space round the altar to stop less than religious types giving messages definitely not from the Almighty.
The Web site -- launched a week ago by the Bishop of London in a fanfare of publicity about the new 21st century way of connecting to God -- continues and "worshippers" can still join the congregation online.
But the British organizers of the project -- sponsored by the UK Methodist Church -- said their attempts to smite blasphemers have fallen on stony cyberground.
Churchwardens armed with "smite" buttons said they had been unable to cope with calls from around the world and different time zones 24 hours a day.
Bogus "worshippers" -- they join the virtual church as 3-D cartoon characters -- have logged in as "God," "Jesus" and "Satan." They have greeted newcomers with: "Satan loves you" and walked up to people praying, shouting four-letter words.
Here is the Church of Fools website.
Blog credit to Crux News.
Just in case you are wondering what the congregation at the Church of Fools believes, check out the 11th Commandment contest. The winners and the runner-ups give a rather grim picture of what worshippers in this cyber-church are all about.
PATRICK J. BUCHANAN
writes a scathing critique of American culture titled "What Do We Offer the World?" posted on the American Culture website, sent in by a reader. The concluding paragraph:
A society that accepts the killing of a third of its babies as women's "emancipation," that considers homosexual marriage to be social progress, that hands out contraceptives to 13-year-old girls at junior high ought to be seeking out a confessional ? better yet, an exorcist ? rather than striding into a pulpit like Elmer Gantry to lecture mankind on the superiority of "American values."
It's not all that we offer, but I can't argue with him that some of what we offer is pretty raunchy!
E-MAIL FROM DR. BOND
I have received an email today from Dr. Jeffrey M. Bond, President of College of St. Justin Martyr, concerning the continuing saga at the Society of St. John. He links this article from the Times Leader about Fr. Urrutigoity. The article confirms that Fr. Urrutigoity appears in priestly garments in a child's missal currently being published by Patmos, Inc..
Dr. Bond claims that Urrutigoity "has been in continual violation of the diocesan ban" against wearing priestly garb, and that the evidence can be seen on the Society website. "At the bottom of the SSJ's home page, click on the link to photos of the SSJ's recent Holy Week and Easter celebrations, and you will see Urrutigoity in no less than thirteen of these pictures."
Referring to the article in which Maria Orzel suggests a picture taken before 2002 would not violate the prohibition, Bond says, "Neither [Bishop] Martino nor Orzel seem to comprehend the significance of the SSJ's efforts to rehabilitate Urrutigoity as 'child friendly' by publishing this photograph at the present time in a child's missal. What difference does the date of the photograph make? The SSJ, through its lay corporation, Patmos, is currently offering this book for sale and using it to raise money (as the SSJ's most recent fundraising letter makes manifest). Hence, the SSJ is clearly presenting Urrutigoity as a priest in good standing, yet he is not."
LIFESITE HAS A REPORT ON POPULATION CONTROL
Toronto, May 18, 2004 (LifeSiteNews.com)? We must first stress that the 66-page LifeSiteNews.com document to which this story refers is a MUST READ for all persons concerned about life, family and even freedom. For a small percentage of activists and leaders, there is little that is new in the document but, for the vast majority, the all-important big picture it reveals is a critical must learn project. Without this understanding, most will continue to fight against shadows and ignore real culprits.
A LOOK BACK
On a slow news day sometimes it's interesting to revisit old information and compare it with the contemporary scene. In that light, a look back at a Wanderer interview with Malachi Martin discussing Windswept House is sort of interesting. The interview appeared in the May 1997 issue.
CALL TO ACTION WEBSITE ON CHURCH REFORM
Interesting picture at the top of the website. Are you ready for that in your parish? It's difficult to tell even what it is. In any case, those folks in white appear to be liturgical dancers. Is that a priest in that multi-colored thing?
Personally, I like this part:
In 1990, in the face of an institution that was becoming increasingly oppressive we published "Call for Reform in the Catholic Church"(sic) In that document we pointed to the church's growing lack of credibility among its members as well as in the larger world. "Unfortuntely, today's church is crippled by its failure to address fundamental justice issues within its own institutional structures. It thus becomes a stumbling block both to its own members and to society."
As though we haven't had "reform" ad nauseum via CTA since Vatican II. They just don't seem to get it--they are the problem, not the solution.
A reader sent in an article at Seattle Catholic dealing with conspiracy theories. It begins:
In the early part of the 20th century an author named Nesta Webster penned a provocative work called The Cause of World Unrest. In it she posited, as she did in other books (including her much reprinted study of the French Revolution) that all human events were shaped by a small but malevolent conspiracy. Interestingly, Catholic historian and apologist Hilaire Belloc expressed impatience with such conspiracy-fixations in a letter to an American friend in 1924:
The Cause of World Unrest is a book written by a woman called Webster. In my opinion it is a lunatic book. She is one of those people who have got one cause on the brain....
Belloc thought people were fools who denied certain conspiratorial elements in history, "but people are much bigger fools who... ascribe every revolutionary movement to Jews and secret societies." Such people ignore the obvious if unexciting causes of revolution. Instead, he says, "there is a type of unstable mind which cannot rest without morbid imaginings, and the conception of single causes simplifies thought. With [Nesta Webster] it is the Jews, with some people it is the Jesuits, with others the Freemasons and so on. The world is more complex than that. Many of the facts quoted are true enough, but the inferences drawn are exaggerated."
Nesta Webster is cited frequently in occult literature, but she gets a bad rap at least half of the time. Since she is so controversial, I haven't read her material.
But the really interesting comment in the article is this one--at least for me anyway:
An article that might have offered clarification on this confusing topic, but instead only added to existing perplexity, was Sandra Miesel's "Swinging at Windmills: A Close Look at Catholic Conspiracy Theories," published in Crisis magazine in 2002.7 While raising a few valid points, she undermined her criticism of conspiracy theories with contentious and misleading statements. Her bias was so flagrant that it invited a reprimand from Dr. Alice von Hildebrand who said that Miesel "overshoots her mark and weakens her conclusions" by blithely dismissing Cold War Communist infiltration of the West, including the Church. Yet we know that this infiltration was both intense and widespread as shown in such carefully documented post-Soviet studies as The Secret World of American Communism based on KGB files, which says that "the widespread popular belief that many American Communists collaborated with Soviet intelligence... was well founded." 8 Clearly, Miesel's explanation was as simplistic as that of the "merchants of paranoia" she lambastes. As with the majority of journalists, she has succeeded merely in eliminating the sensible middle ground, leaving us with the prevailing extreme views on the subject.
The influence of subversive organizations in history is undeniable. Most recently the Daily Telegraph (UK) documented the machinations of the Skull and Bones Society in the careers of both George W. Bush and John Kerry. Political scientist Kenneth Minogue tells us that "the roots of modern ideology are to be found in the development of various rationalist secret societies (such as the Bavarian Illuminati founded in 1776 by Adam Weishaupt) from the second half of the eighteenth century onwards." 9 The Oxford History of the French Revolution acknowledges that "masons were to be found among the leading revolutionaries in France." 10 This same presence was felt in the nationalist and socialist upheavals of the 19th century. In his biography of the Italian revolutionary Garibaldi, J. Ridley states that the secret order of the Carbonari, who were linked to the Freemasons, "were the pioneers of the modern revolutionary underground organization." 11 None of the above sources can be dismissed as lunatic ravings.
At the same time, a judicious reading of history shows that there is no cut and dried pattern to political activities, including clandestine organizations. Freemasonry made significant strides amongst the nobility and royalty of France prior to the Revolution of 1789 and members of the Lodge were well represented on both sides of that conflict, as they were in the American War for Independence. Such overlapping involvement in secret societies, many of them unconnected or even rivaling one another, cannot be explained as part of a "unified field theory" of conspiracies, however plausible that may sound.
Indeed, as the article states, they cannot be dismissed. What throws people who look for a consistent theory--developed by a personality in the leadership role, built upon and expanded, coming to some recognizable power, and ultimately drawing to a conclusion--what the article calls "unified field theory," is that they can't find it. And they will never find it. The only consistency that can be found in the material world is the cause itself, and that cause is the destruction of the Catholic Church. There is an arch conspirator, but he is not human. He uses his human subjects to do his work, and drops them like yesterday's garbage when he is finished using them. The consistency lies in the spiritual world, and it can be traced back to Eden. "You, too, can be God" or "a god" nearly always appears somewhere in the plot. If the machinations attempt to undo God's working in His world, it's part of the conspiracy.
What Sandra did was attempt to claim that the lack of connected evidence was proof that no conspiracy existed. That was how she got into the sort of difficulties that Seattle Catholic cites. One simply cannot dismiss the evidence because the overarching conspirator can't be found, though many fall into this trap.
My own response to Sandra's Crisis article is here (scroll down) among the letters to the editor.
Tuesday, May 18, 2004
PLANET ZIRCON IN THE NEWS AGAIN !
WorldNetDaily reports that a German couple were unable to conceive after 8 years of marriage, and so they went to a fertility clinic where it was discovered they hadn't tried sex.
Yup! It does say that. Now if you believe this one, wait while I get out my tropical iceberg brochure!
Thanks to a reader for sending in this one
DIALOGUE IS A WAY OF EVANGELIZING, SAYS JOHN PAUL II
This is the title of an article at Zenit which is subtitled "Addresses Challenges of Migration in an Age of Globalization."
To me the article reads like a prescription for syncretism. But the one line that stands out above all the others is this one:
"Each culture is an approach to the mystery of man, also to his religious dimension, and this explains - as the Second Vatican Council affirms - why some elements of truth are also outside the revealed message, including among nonbelievers, who cultivate lofty human values, despite the fact that they do not recognize their source," [emphasis mine] the Holy Father added.
"Outside the revealed message"... Where does this truth outside of the revealed message come from? What is its source? If it is not revealed, the source can't be God unless we decide that God works through strange gods. It is possible that man on his own could arrive at a truth that is God's truth. If we are going to accept that idea, then it is not unreasonable to conclude that I can arrive at a truth and so can you. We have a window of opportunity here to define truth for ourselves.
If another culture has arrived at truth, it is by definition a "revealed truth." There is only one source of truth. The Pope's statement is monstrous. I would like to think there is an error in the translation. But who knows these days. Maybe the Pope really does think there is some source of truth outside of revealed truth. Hey...it promotes dialogue, afterall. One wonders, though, who is evangelizing whom?
ANOTHER VIEW OF IRAQ
A mailing list I'm on has this letter out tonight. It comes from a soldier in the Army National Guard Signal Battalion. I'm leaving out his name and the specifics of his company since I don't have his permission to use that information. He asks in the email to get the word out, so here is what he writes:
As I head off to Baghdad for the final weeks of my stay in Iraq, I wanted to say thanks to all of you who did not believe the media. They have done a very poor job of covering everything that has happened. I am sorry that I have not been able to visit all of you during my two week leave back home. And just so you can rest at night knowing something is happening in Iraq that is noteworthy, I thought I would pass this on to you. This is the list of things that has happened in Iraq recently: (Please share it with your friends and compare it to the version that your paper is producing)
-Over 4.5 million people have clean drinking water for the first time ever in Iraq.
-Over 400,000 kids have up to date immunizations.
-Over 1500 schools have been renovated and ridded of the weapons that were stored there so education can occur.
-The port of Uhm Qasar was renovated so grain can be off loaded from ships faster.
-School attendance is up 80% from levels before the war.
-The country had it's first 2 billion barrel export of oil in August.
-The country now receives 2 times the electrical power it did before the war.
-100% of the hospitals are open and fully staffed compared to 35% before the war.
-Elections are taking place in every major city and city councils are in place.
-Sewer and water lines are installed in every major city.
-Over 60,000 police are patrolling the streets.
-Over 100,000 Iraqi civil defense police are securing the country.
-Over 80,000 Iraqi soldiers are patrolling the streets side by side with US soldiers.
-Over 400,000 people have telephones for the first time ever.
-Students are taught field sanitation and hand washing techniques to prevent the spread of germs.
-An interim constitution has been signed.
-Girls are allowed to attend school for the first time ever in Iraq.
-Text books that don't mention Saddam are in the schools for the first time in 30 years.
Don't believe for one-second that these people do not want us there. I have met many many people from Iraq that want us there and in a bad way. They say they will never see the freedoms we talk about but they hope their children will. We are doing a good job in Iraq and I challenge anyone, anywhere to dispute me on these facts. So If you happen to run into John Kerry, be sure to give him my email address and send him to Denison, Iowa. This soldier will set him straight. If you are like me and very disgusted with how this period of rebuilding has been portrayed, email this to a friend and let them know there are good things happening.
ROD DREHER TAKES THE BISHOPS TO TASK IN THE DALLAS MORNING NEWS
The article was sent to me in email, but I may have seen it in Amy Welborn's blog this morning as well. Unfortunately Dallas Morning News requires registration. The title of the article is Bishops ignore their burning house. Here is some of the content:
For an entire generation, Catholics in this country have not been taught the basics of the faith.
In a powerful essay published in The Wanderer, a conservative Catholic newspaper, Father Joseph F. Wilson writes that this communion controversy is taking place as if the church in America has clearly and forcefully taught its people what the Eucharist is, and why abortion is so morally repugnant. Nonsense, says the Brooklyn priest, who argues that parishes have fed their people a steady diet of noncontroversial, content-free "mommy religion" for so long that nobody should be surprised that Catholics don't understand what the church teaches, and why.
"They may come to Mass, but they are, sadly, never really fed, never really formed in the Catholic faith," the priest says. "And their attitudes and values morph into what we would expect of amiable pagans."
"And as a church," he concludes, "we have done this to ourselves."
This is exactly correct. The episcopal crusade for electoral pro-life purity brings to mind a principal overseeing a failing high school, who marches into a classroom demanding that illiterate children who have been taught by incompetents suddenly read a passage from Shakespeare.
It's true that we have not often been taught from the pulpit. I have personally heard a few homilies that made the Church's position on abortion quite clear, but it's possible that others have not.
But can it also be said that we are not aware that Catholics oppose abortion when Right to Life groups have kept this aspect of Catholic theology ever before our eyes? Even the evening news covers the demonstrations outside of abortion clinics. Could a Catholic truly remain ignorant that this is a teaching of the Church?
What seems more likely to me is that most Catholics know what the Church teaches, but also have concluded that the "primacy of conscience clause" leaves the door open for them to make their own decision about their own circumstances. Also contributing to the confusion are the dissenting voices promoting abortion while wearing a Catholic label. The fact that these have not been silenced goes a long way to explaining why Catholics might believe there is some wiggle room on the subject of abortion. It is by not silencing these dissenting voices that the bishops have failed, more than it is a matter of teaching from the pulpits. The blame for not silencing these dissenting voices, on the subject of abortion and a lot of other Catholic theology, does not stop at the bishops, but rather it creeps up the hierarchical ladder to the very top. These voices have every right to be heard. What they do not have every right to is to claim to be Catholic while voicing their dissent.
NEWS?? FROM PLANET ZIRCON
where this chicken is subservient to your commands.
Just don't ask it to jump on the couch.
(Considering the costume, I suspect this chicken has some tricks under its feathers that I don't want to know about!)
DID WE DO IT TO OURSELVES ?
LifeSite has a story on the web from Phil Lawler:
BOSTON, May. 17 (LifeSiteNews.com) - Phil Lawler, editor of the Boston based Catholic World News and author of five books and numerous articles, has responded to today's beginning of legally sanctioned homosexual unions in Massachusetts. In his Phil's Forum for today, Lawler lays out the case that Christians themselves are to a large degree responsible for this logical outcome of the acceptance of contraception.
Lawler writes, "The degradation of marriage did not begin with a Massachusetts court decision late last year. It began a few decades ago, when 'ordinary' married couples? began routinely using contraceptives. At that point, the typical American marriage-- which might have looked, from the outside, very much like that beautiful old union-- was itself based on acts of sexual perversion."
Sigmund Freud, Lawler explains, said that, "it is a characteristic common to all perversions that in them reproduction is put aside as an aim. This is actually the criterion by which we judge whether a sexual activity is perverse-- if it departs from reproduction as its aim and pursues the attainment of gratification independently."
Monday, May 17, 2004
THE VATICAN LIST OF DISSENTERS
Found it for the first time tonight. It's on the Vatican Website titled Documents of a doctrinal nature. I see that Hans Kung and the Abbe de Nantes are both there, as is a letter to the Bishop of Cleveland from March 1967. Too bad some of the material is not in English.
CRUX NEWS NOW HAS A DAILY FEED
Bookmark this page for the daily updates from Michael Rose.
The story at the top of the Crux website tonight is the Scranton Times Tribune report on the accusations against the Society of St. John priests, Fr. Eric Ensey and Fr. Carlos Urrutigoity:
It was only after the lawsuit was filed, Mr. Bendell contends, that the priests' attorney, Sal Cognetti, asked to have the psychological records sent to him.
"At that point, Bishop Timlin was faced with a choice," Mr. Bendell wrote in his argument. "On one hand, he could insist upon following through with the standard procedure of obtaining the records and protecting the bodies and souls of the children of the diocese from potential sexual predators. Or he could acquiesce to the wishes of the priests' attorney in order to give them a tactical advantage in civil litigation. Bishop Timlin chose the latter path ...."
Dr. Jeffrey Bond is looking more credible all the time!
MOVE OVER JOHN KERRY, RICK SANTORUM IS HERE
From the website of National Catholic Reporter:
With his enthusiastic endorsement of pro-choice stalwart Arlen Specter, R-Pa., pro-life champion Rick Santorum, R-Pa., has, arguably, done more for the cause of abortion rights than either Ted Kennedy, D-Mass., Tom Daschle, D-S.D., or John Kerry, D-Mass., will ever be able to achieve.
Whatever one?s view of Specter or his pro-life opponent Pat Toomey, Santorum?s pivotal role in the primary election battle does us all a favor by exposing the faulty logic of those who would use the sacraments to punish pro-choice Catholic politicians.
A little background: Specter, a four-term senator increasingly out-of-step with his party on social issues, faced a surprisingly strong challenge from Toomey, a social and fiscal conservative. Specter was strongly backed by President Bush and the national Republican political apparatus, fearful that Toomey would be a weak general election candidate at a time when continuing Republican control of the Senate is a top priority. Santorum, a leading conservative Catholic legislator, to considerable criticism from his supporters, opted to endorse Specter over Toomey, Santorum?s ideological brother. More than a few pro-lifers and self-proclaimed ?faithful Catholics? saw Santorum?s endorsement as a betrayal. And that same betrayal would, of course, go for Bush.
Does this mean that he has been excommunicated by Bishop Sheridan?
SANTA MUERTE IN THE NEWS AGAIN
is in the news again, this time at Reuters. This article offers a picture of the sidewalk shrine that is different from the last death's head bride. From the website:
At the host's lavish ranch, where former beauty queens plied guests with alcohol and cocaine, Aridjis says he witnessed members of Mexico's political and business elite worship at a secret altar to Santa Muerte -- his first encounter with the phenomenon.
What to make of this claim?
"Santa Muerte is a saint like any other. She performs many miracles," said shaven-headed taxi driver Eduardo Ruben Villegas, 35, who sports multiple tattoos and has an altar in his home to Santa Muerte.
He has been a devotee since she cured his sister of cancer, he said. Villegas has an image of Santa Muerte hanging from the rear view mirror of his taxi, on his car keys and on three pendants he wears around his neck. "She protects me a lot in my car. I haven't ever been assaulted," he said.
Blog credit to Spirit Daily
IF YOU REMEMBER "ELJOYA"
or "Bileworm", you might want to stay up late Wednesday night. He tells me he will be shellacking a hot dog on the Jay Leno Tonite Show. There's a story behind this, of course, but I'll let you watch the show and discover it.
THE PERFECT ACCOMPANIMENT TO ROBERT LENTZ'S ICONS
Sr. Mary Lou Kownacki, OSB's litany for the arrival of the new millennium:
O Cosmic Christ,
and through you
and for you,
all things were created...
Here are a few more choice entries:
Through Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart,
musician of Holy Mystery,
you bathed the world in beauty.
For those who may not know, Mozart wrote the Masonic opera "The Magic Flute"
And this one
Through Meister Eckhart,
you refused to abandon the inner light.
a controversial Dominican mystic who periodically drifted off into heresy.
Through Teilhard de Chardin,
scientist of the cosmos,
you imagined a new heaven and a new earth.
Teilhard, the darling of Matthew Fox and other heretics
Saints, preserve us from airhead nuns.
Sunday, May 16, 2004
"MAYBE I HAVE DONE TOO LITTLE..."
According to Reuters, this is a statement from his new book to be released May 18:
Vatican City - In a new autobiography, Pope John Paul wonders if he has been strict enough in his leadership of the Church, a self doubt that will surprise many people who have seen the pontiff as authoritarian.
In excerpts printed by Il Giornale newspaper on Sunday ahead of the book's publication on May 18, the pope said church leaders had to admonish people as well as lead them in faith.
"I think that in this aspect, maybe I have done too little. There is always this problem of how to balance authority and service. Perhaps I need to criticise myself for not having tried hard enough to lead," the pope wrote.
Blog credit to Novus Ordo Watch.
A reader sent a link to this article at www.Chiesa, which claims that the Pope does not write all of his own material:
"Even as a writer, Karol Wojtyla is different from what many believe. He doesn't in the least consider himself a genius. And not even a poet. He enjoys writing poetry, but he smiles at the deluge of enthusiasm with which these poems are reviewed: 'If I were not the pope, they wouldn't even look at them'. When they were published in Poland in the monthly magazine 'Znak', he signed them with the pseudonym Andrzej Jawien, he was so embarrassed about them. He refused to be made an honorary member of the Writers' Union."
Wojtyla loves to wax ironic upon his other writings as well, those destined to become part of history: his encyclicals, books, and speeches. "Since I became pope, it's been much easier, because other people write for me." Entirely true. His habitual practice is to write out by hand, in Polish, only the essential passages. After that, in a few lines of Latin, he gives to others the guidelines to complete the work.
For a few of the encyclicals, the names of the specialists most involved have leaked out: the missionary Piero Gheddo for "Redemptoris Missio" in 1990, and bishop and theologian Rino Fisichella for "Fides et Ratio" in 1998.
As for his autobiographical books, the first, "Gift and Mystery," 1996, which covers his childhood, young adulthood, and the years of his priesthood, was born from an interview with the former vice-director of the "Osservatore Romano," Gianfranco Svidercoschi; and this second one, which is entitled "Get Up, Let's Go" and recounts his years as bishop of Krakow, had as its primary drafter a Polish bishop who is also his friend, Stanislaw Rylko, president of the Pontifical Council for the Laity.
Can we assume that he does, however, proofread the final draft? In the case of documents such as Fides et Ratio I would certainly hope so!
PROPOSED OAKLAND CATHEDRAL
A reader sent in the website for the slide show of a proposed cathedral for Oakland.
I like it!
Not surprisingly, the design comes from Notre Dame. It's light years better than what Los Angeles got stuck with.
DEBATE IN AMY WELBORN'S BLOG ON BISHOP SHERIDAN'S LETTER
is interesting. Fr. Rob has joined the discussion.
THE CONTINUING STORY OF THE SSJ
The president of the College of St. Justin Martyr, Dr. Jeffrey Bond, has been heading up a campaign to stop the alleged sexual abuse that has taken place within the Society of St. John. The details of this campaign are spelled out at the college website. I have just received in email a copy of a letter addressed to Bishop Martino discussing a recent activity of the SSJ. This, in part, is what it says:
Your failure to shut down the Society of St. John, a homosexual cult in your diocese, is now bearing the expected malevolent fruit. The SSJ's latest scam is to publish a child's missal in which its morally twisted clerics pose as models for future generations of traditional Catholic children. The SSJ is now hawking this missal to the public, eight pages of which can be downloaded at http://www.patmos.us/Missal_Part1_Introit.pdf.
On page seven of this missal you will see Fr. Carlos Urrutigoity, fully vested, posing as a model priest delivering a sermon. While you have been busy shutting down Catholic elementary schools in your diocese, the SSJ has been busy rehabilitating Urrutigoity as "child friendly" by preparing to place his image in the minds of unsuspecting Catholic boys. What will happen when these boys eventually meet the real Urrutigoity to whom they will be especially vulnerable having already been introduced to him as an exemplary priest from the picture in their child's missal?
I've visited the pdf file. There is, indeed, a picture such as is described in this letter. The charges are serious and ongoing. If this priest is guilty of what has been charged, this latest tactic is diabolical.
Those who contribute to the Society of St. John, a traditional Latin Mass society, might want to investigate the charges spelled out on Dr. Bond's website before making future contributions. At one time the college was associated with the Society, but it has detached itself from them over this scandal.
BOUTROS-GHALI HAS A LOVE AFFAIR WITH THE OCCULT
according to a report by Judi Mcleod at the Toronto Free Press website:
Strange goes to weird when one peeks into Boutros-Ghali?s career at the UN.
Like many of the UN secretary-generals who came before him, Boutros-Ghali has a love affair with the occult.
At least, unlike Javier de Cuellar, the Secretary-General immediately before him, Boutros-Ghali did not claim to have been whisked off by aliens on Nov. 30, 1989.
When closely checked about the veracity of this event, de Cuellar has been downright dodgy, but in response to an enquiry about the abduction from the Prince of Liechtenstein, he did not deny it happened...
And that's not even getting into the well-known 'spookdom' of New Ager, special UN advisor Maurice Strong. Working with former Soviet President Mikhail Gorbachev, Strong has admitted that his UN Earth Charter is a replacement for the Ten Commandments. His wife, Hanna runs a 200,000-acre New Age Spiritual ranch in Crestone, Colorado.