Ballad of the Ordinary Man III: The Apostolate of the Laity


By Charlie Johnston


I am a realist. Partly because of this, miracles have always struck me as a matter of course. If God IS, of course He is not bound by the normal laws He has instituted to govern the universe. If He is not, it is perfectly natural that there are things we do not understand. The whole course of our lives, if lived seriously, is a progression from lesser to greater understanding – and the ultimate understanding that there are some things that may ever remain a mystery to us.

It is baffling to me that so many moderns, confronting a phenomenon they do not understand, stubbornly insist it cannot exist at all. Weirdly, they consider this a sign of their intelligence! If that type of intelligence governed the world, we would never have gotten past club and cave. In college, my astronomy professor was J. Allen Hynek, head of the US Air Force Project Bluebook, which examined the striking phenomenon of UFO’s. He would never discuss Project Bluebook in class, but frequently did public talks on it open to all students. He would ridicule those who insisted that because they believed there was no intelligent life on other planets, there could be no such things as UFOs. He said UFOs were a well-attested, but mysterious phenomenon, so the proper scientific approach was to examine the phenomenon without preconceptions. It had nothing to do with aliens – except that aliens were one possible explanation for them. In one of the most delicious phrases I have ever heard, Dr. Hynek contemptuously said that those who could not separate a particular phenomenon from their preconceptions were not scientifically minded at all, but were in the grips of a debilitating “temporal provincialism.” The modern world is filled with people who think they are smart but are just suffering from temporal provincialism.

On the other hand, I am equally taken aback by those who seem to depend on miracles to sustain their faith. A seeming miracle has three possible sources that I am aware of: a) it miraclescan come from God, b) it could be one of the devil’s imitative parlor tricks or, c) it could be a natural phenomenon we don’t yet understand. A miracle can be a useful goad to get someone to re-examine their own impoverished belief systems or to contemplate more seriously the claims of God. It can only be an introduction, a doorway, to faith, though – not a foundation. In the Gospels, every time Jesus performed a miracle, it was to illustrate a larger truth of faith. Go back and check it for yourself. He did NOT cure all the sick, He did NOT feed all the hungry. He used His miracles as a sort of visual aid to help direct us to the foundational truths that, if embraced, WOULD feed all the hungry and direct all to eternal life. Authentic miracles are gold, but it is the altar of authentic faith which sanctifies the gold rather than the gold sanctifying the altar.

Some get so enthused at the idea of miracles they get obsessed by imputing miraculous qualities to perfectly mundane events. This debases the very point of miracles – and leaves the real thing in disrepute as dodgy superstition. In modern times, the phenomenon at Fatima, Lourdes…the tilma of St. Juan Diego…more than a few Eucharistic miracles…and the healing described in the coming movie, “Breakthrough,” are clearly miraculous. There is a great wealth of real miracles. Imputing miraculous qualities to perfectly normal events, though – or creating soothing urban legends that fall apart under examination, just makes it easier for skeptics to dismiss all reports of miracles as hokum.

The devil, then, makes use of two powerful weapons that men give him as a pure gift: the refusal to examine anything not immediately understandable, a form of pride that the ignorant count as intelligence; and a credulous enthusiasm to impute miraculous qualities to perfectly ordinary things – that saps credibility from the real thing.

Faith and Reason

It is not because of miracles that I believe, nor do I accept miracles simply because I believe. After the Resurrection, Jesus showed Doubting Thomas His wounds. Because he saw, Thomas believed. Jesus told him, “Blessed are those who have not seen and yet believe.” (John 20:29). Given that I have had visitations since my earliest memories, I can’t count myself among those who Jesus calls blessed in this passage. On two important occasions, I have shown my willingness to forego such things entirely in favor of having the Church. I believe because Christianity, seriously examined, offers the only consistently coherent and stable explanation of life and the universe. Science, you say? Which science? That of today, that of 50 years ago, or that of 500 years ago? Science is adoubting_thomas1 shifting desert: what was accepted as true a few years ago is revealed as false today, and what is true today will be revealed as false a few years from now. The scientific method is a stable, powerful tool for discerning truth, but the conclusions of science at any given point in history are transient, subject to further examination. There is no such thing as “settled” science. In Christianity, specifically in Catholicism, we are called to seek truth through the twin tools of faith and reason. Most of the greatest historical defenders of reason have been men of faith. This is because we are to seek God with our whole heart, mind, and soul.

Often, the people who are most faithfully devoted to God are the last to receive the benefit of miracles. St. Bernadette Soubirous, who uncovered the miraculous spring at Lourdes, died of tuberculosis, borne of her childhood cholera. She reportedly told her superiors that the healing from the miracle she uncovered was “not for her.” What, then, is the purpose of miracles if it is not to confirm the faith of the most faithful? None of us can know the mind of God, but we can observe the circumstances and learn from them. Though there may be more, I think there are three main purposes that prompt God to perform and reveal a miracle:

  • To assure us of His tender love.
  • To bolster the faith of the timid and uncertain.
  • To manifest Himself boldly to an unbelieving age.

Times of Tribulation

The greatest profusion of miracles seems to come at the times of greatest crisis – of apostasy and disbelief in salvation history. Contrary to popular belief, most of the Old Testament prophets were NOT miracle workers. Only four routinely performed miracles.

The first was Moses. He was sent to free the captive Jewish people from their Egyptian masters. God performed miracles through Moses to demonstrate to Pharaoh that He IS God and is all powerful – and to force the issue of releasing the captives. Once the journey out from Egypt began, the Jews proved incredibly recalcitrant and faithless despite the prodigy of miracles they had seen and benefitted from. Again, God performed a multitude of miracles through Moses to hold this ill-tempered, ungrateful people together through their 40-year journey. (It is largely their continual appetite for apostasy moses parting the seaand grumbling that persuaded me that miracles are not sufficient to sustain faith. Faith is an act of the will, an entire turning towards the living God. Miracles happen whether one has faith or not. Faith just makes them easier to accept. To the faithless, they are a rebuke.)

It fell to Joshua to lead the Israelites in occupying the land which was promised. The process of inheriting the land involved, again, a multitude of miracles. While the people delighted in these, there was a clear, cautionary warning inherent to them. God was giving them victory, but in ways calculated to remind them that it was by His power, not theirs, that they were favored. It was a goad to fidelity, a goad that was often and quickly unheeded.

Perhaps the most prodigious miracle workers were Elijah and his successor, Elisha, who dominate the two books of Kings. The united Davidic Kingdom reached its Zenith early on in Kings, with Solomon’s dedication of the Temple. After that, corruption and rot set in quickly. (Prosperity and peace seem ever to be a much greater challenge to faith and fidelity than hardship and trial). The kingdom, rent by internecine strife, soon split in two, between the larger northern nation of Israel and the smaller southern kingdom of Judah. The northern king almost immediately set up idolatrous shrines – including a reappearance of golden calves. The northern kings were overwhelmingly idolatrous, tyrannical and wicked. While the Temple was in the southern kingdom, Judah, it was not long before it, too, tolerated idolatrous shrines and chased after strange gods. Both the political systems (the kings) and the religious authorities (the priests) had become deeply corrupted. The pillars which faithful people wanted to count on had crumbled. It was in this setting that God sent two major prophets, first Elijah and then his successor, Elisha, to comfort and give hope to His people. Both were prodigals of miracles, that the Jews might be reminded who the true God IS. Elijah was a prophet of judgment, while Elisha was more a prophet of mercy. Even so, their efforts were not enough to preserve the kingdoms – Israel was ultimately decimated by foreigners and Judah taken into the exile of the Babylonian captivity. It was enough, however, to preserve a remnant faithful, even in exile, so that the godly Jewish people did not perish from the earth.

Signs of the Times

Now, in an echo of the books of Kings, all the political, social and religious pillars upon which we have relied are in deep crisis, if not complete collapse. In the American political system, a large anti-God faction presses for the end of civil rights and equal justice under law, determined that it shall rule or ruin. Actually, this ethos is entrenched throughout the world, largely under the guise of globalism. The rule of law in the west is in tatters. In England, a Christian street-preacher can be arrested…and Christians can be arrested for objecting to Muslim street-preachers. The beautiful land of Australia, which I have long dreamed of visiting, is off my wish list now. Giving rein to a toxic anti-Catholicism, it convicted Cdl. George Pell when the evidence showed not only that Pell did not do what he was accused of, but could not possibly have done it. I know few American judges so corrupt they would not have ended this trial when the evidence showed the accusations were a literal impossibility. But law is just another crude cudgel of power in much of the world now. It has no more to do with justice than Soviet show trials did.

Socially, we are given to absurd enthusiasms that have never been heard of in history. Gender can now be anything you want it to be, completely divorced from genetics and reality. Of course, the cudgel of law is now being mounted to any who insist on staying connected to reality. “Social (In)justice Warriors” style their preferences as “rights” while denouncing actual civil rights as bigotry or some ‘ism that must be stamped out. Religious leaders often try to appease the mob rather than proclaim Christ. It was right of Christian leaders to denounce a recent slaughter of Muslims in New Zealand…but I would have been heartened if those same leaders had even bothered to notice the double number of Christians who had been systematically slaughtered by Muslims in Nigeria the same week.

A host of Bishops busy themselves explaining why Jesus and the Apostles didn’t mean what they actually said. A cabal of homosexual clerics has infiltrated the highest levels of the Church – both abusing the faithful and protecting themselves from any consequences for such abuse – while simultaneously attacking Scripture and Magisterial teaching as stuff for chumps. At the Vatican, it is the faithful chumps who are purged and the faithless predators who are promoted. Few who are not morally compromised and theologically suspect are promoted in a Vatican that increasingly resembles an ongoing criminal enterprise.

simon helping jesus
Time for Simon to step forward

Yes, we are in a reprise of the books of Kings. Does it portend an advent of a new age of miracles? Personally, I think it does. God has been hinting at His new advent with signs in the skies and in the lands, with convulsions and boomings…but a hard-hearted people determined to chase after their own pleasures has been blind and deaf to these signs. I think it is prelude to an extended and large-scale manifestation of His power, that God IS. Should this be the case, it will hearten many of the faithful, it will give pause to many who have lost heart – and many who have wallowed in decadence, thinking there would be no accounting. But it will enrage some, including more than a few who wear clerical robes. Some men just will not accept any power greater than themselves – and will react in violent rage to proof of it. So, the time of trial is upon us. It will wax and wane, sometimes giving false hope that all is well and at others, false fear that all is lost. But it will burn until it has burned itself out, like the French Revolution, the Third Reich, and the Rwandan Genocide. Depraved disorder cannot help but ultimately consume itself. The fundamental question, as it always is, is when Jesus looks to earth, will He find faith here?

A True Remnant

I hate using the word, “remnant,” for it is so often abused in self-congratulatory vanity. A true remnant does not look at all those other poor sinners with prim disapproval – or glee at their destruction. A true remnant recognizes its own sinfulness, its own reliance on God, and the implacable Divine command that it minister to all even as it defends the faithful against depredations. Like its Father in heaven, it yearns for the reclamation of souls, rather than their destruction. With that said, God responds quickest to a remnant which keeps actual faith with Him, a people who keep His commandments – and trust His word without perverting it. (I speak not of genuine disagreements here; we literally have clerics and theologians now who argue that the command to sexual fidelity in marriage actually means that if it’s consensual, it’s okay. Never thought I’d live to see the day when some high Church authorities would adopt the occultist Aleister Crowley’s dictum to “Do what you will” as doctrinal truth). We are called then, like Joshua, to resolve that we will serve the Lord, whatever the world – and trendy, worldly clerics – choose. To be a remnant for Christ; to be Gideon’s 300 (Judges Chapters 6-8); to be Christ’s yeast in the dough of the world (Matthew 13:33).

These Things Must Come

I take it as a given now that war will come, both to America and to the world. I deeply appreciate the work Donald Trump has done to give us time to gird our loins, but he is like the Dutch boy with his finger in the dike. Unfortunately, we have a lot of holes in this dike, with more bursting forth each day. Many malevolently ambitious types are busy poking more holes, while most officials who aren’t actually malevolent just want to keep from getting wet – so this little Dutch boy is getting little help. The dike is going to burst and we will be flooded – until God intervenes.

Christians are under siege throughout the world, whether in the hard martyrdom of execution in the Middle East and Africa or the soft martyrdom of bankruptcy, silencing and imprisonment in the West. The late Cardinal Francis George of Chicago said, back in 2013, that he “…would die in his bed, his successor would die in jail and that man’s successor would be executed in the public square—after which the martyr’s successor would, as the Church had done so often in the past, help pick up the fragments of a broken civilization and start again.”

Given these assumptions, my mind turns to practical matters – how to endure with fidelity until the Lord’s appointed time?

I ponder the Old Testament Book of Tobit. While most people know the story well enough, few note that Tobit and Tobias lived in the Northern kingdom of Israel, which was completely apostate and corrupt almost from the start. Except for rare trips to the Temple in Jerusalem in neighboring Judea, they had no faithful priests or licit places of worship in the northern kingdom. And yet, God sent the Archangel Raphael to aid and guide them. What is made clear in Tobit is that even when surrounded by corruption –

St. Raphael and Tobias

even when you physically have no place you can go to worship licitly – you can remain close to God by doing the corporal acts of mercy (feeding the hungry, clothing the naked, burying the dead, ministering to the prisoner, the widow, the orphan) and living traditional piety (prayer, fasting and almsgiving). And God will abide with you. People worry about what they would do if they can’t receive communion. Tobit directs you to the answer – corporal acts of mercy and traditional piety. God does not abandon you because others oppress and harass Christians. It is not what goes into a man that defiles him in God’s eyes, but what comes out. Ensure, then, that what comes out; truth, honor, courage, devotion to the sacred, are your lodestones.

There is no question that God keeps faith with those who keep faith with Him, even when the corruption of society, government, and the clergy is almost universal. Fortunately for us, the corruption of the clergy is nowhere near the extent it was in the northern kingdom of the divided Davidic kingdom. But when the ordinary faithful are beset by aggressive persecutors and the top levels of society, government, and religion have become rife with corruption, they are badly shaken. They need support and encouragement to keep faith AND to live their evangelical call. As Cardinal George said, they need some help “pick(ing) up the fragments of a broken civilization and start(ing) again.”

A Clan of Christian Soldiers

This has dominated my thought since late last year. A people under siege by cultural barbarians need encouragement and mutual support systems, especially when their top leaders have abandoned and betrayed them. Keep in mind that the overwhelming majority of Priests and mid-level Bishops have not betrayed the faithful or Christ – though many, even of these, are cowed by the growing snarls and howling of the mob. They, too, must be cared for in our mutual support systems that they become true pillars of that system of caring for the faithful.

I have been thinking of establishing clans – or tribes – around the country and, perhaps, the world, for people of faith to encourage, uphold and defend each other in the midst of tribulation. While I usually think in terms of regions (which is how I organized states politically), that will not do here. It is senseless to spend as much time trying to organize inhospitable areas as it is growing enthusiastic ones. When boundaries are regional, it focuses on geography rather than fidelity and courage. I am looking for a coalition of the willing. Even when I was politically establishing regional coordinators, I spent my time where I found eager enthusiasts, reasoning that their enthusiasm was more likely to spill over and ignite a neighboring region than wasting efforts trying to push the unwilling into action. If you work from clans, they can grow organically depending on their effectiveness.

There are a number of areas that such clans must be concerned with. Among these are shelter, food, security, child care, education and communication – all of which I have begun work on. Do not think I am speaking of some impotent refuge or withdrawal movement. Rather, I speak of a network. We are to be yeast in the dough of society, not refugees in the catacombs. Every clan should have some provision for sheltering Priests, Preachers and Religious. Two decades ago, it was unthinkable that pastors could be fined or jailed for preaching the ancient faith, yet today it is happening in almost every western country save the United States. And in the States, laymen are routinely fined and prosecuted for simply living their Christian or Jewish faith with fidelity. If the anti-God leftist mob gains pre-eminence for a time (and it is almost certain they will press violently for it), it is entirely likely that faithful religious leaders are likely to face the sort of purges that have, at times, become raging infernos in France, Spain, Mexico, Russia, China and other countries – but this time throughout the world at the same time. We need to uphold faithful clerics as they uphold us. If a clan has a central location where people can gather in times of crisis, that is good. But they can’t go just to hunker down: they must always be focused on how to go forth and evangelize the world.

The Apostolate of the Laity

Here I AmWhat is clear is that, this time, the world will not be renewed by great heroes and elite knights. It will be renewed by ordinary people, working together in mutual faith with God and with each other. Renewal of the Church will not come through top officials. St. Paul VI said, in 1972, that the smoke of satan had entered the Church. I wonder if he knew then that, just over four decades later, the Vatican, itself, would be blazing merrily away. This is the moment for the ordinary man.

My plans for this year are fluid. If the world does not blow up in the interim, I plan to hit the road in late May. I will go, giving presentations wherever I am asked – starting first in the north and eastern parts of the country and then, after a sabbatical in late summer and early fall, going off to the southern and western parts of the country. This time the presentations will focus on how to create a network of mutual aid in trying times and how to keep vibrant faith in faithless times. Even more, it will be about how to convey the joy of that faith to a weary, bleeding world. Keep in mind that many who are eagerly pulling down the pillars that hold up a stable, peaceful world think themselves idealists – with no idea that they are summoning chaos, violence and darkness. Oh, how they will suffer! But for many, it will be a blessed suffering, for it will be the gate back to the joy and peace that vibrant faith brings. Many of them will see the fruit that their depredations bear – and will, first in agony, then in despair, and finally in chastened humility, look once more for truth rather than just for power and pre-eminence. Some will not: some men just want to watch the world burn.

These plans could change in a heartbeat. I always keep my hiking gear close at hand. If I hike it will not be to escape, but to confront the aggressors and hearten the faithful. I don’t know how God intends this should all unfold. What I do know is that this is not the end. God is calling each of us to choose – and when we choose Him to be fruitful and multiply, to bring many back with us to present as an acceptable offering to Him. He calls us not just to talk about courage and fidelity, but to live it fully in uncertain times, trusting that He will give us what we need IF we keep faith with Him, trust in Him, and act as His hands and feet to call His prodigal children back to Him. That means we must serve with all our hearts, all our mind, and all our soul – to be faithful unto death (which for the truly faithful is just our birth to heaven).

My pilgrimage taught me many things. Each day, I did not know where I would sleep that night. Many days, I did not know what I would eat – or whether I would have anything to eat at all. I never knew when I would be able to be in a Church to worship (except when I approached a sizable town) or what church it would be. If Christ was authentically proclaimed, that was sufficient for me under those circumstances. I spent over a year going forth into the unknown each day. Along the way, my little, simple journey touched thousands of people and gave them new heart – and in doing so, gave me new heart. What a glorious time it was! Now we are all on the outskirts of the unknown – and the world will not be at peace again until we have chosen to make our pilgrim journey through this dark valley. God is sufficient to us. If we walk with charity, fidelity, firmness and resolve, we will look back and realize that never were we closer to God in each minute than when we walked with confidence into the unknown in trying times – by His side. There is cause for fear, no doubt. Walk with fidelity, though, and you will be stunned to find a sublime joy deeper than any you have ever known in the very midst of trial. The King calls us to be His fishers of men even as we keep faith with each other.

Peace and justice are established by making prudent choices – in policy and in faith. I will write more on some simple truths about issues that have become viciously snarled and tangled through the vanity and hubris of worldly temporal and spiritual leaders. Even now, I have begun work to build these networks and help them establish independent action, in communion with each other when and where possible. Remember, as I have constantly said, that all faithful Christians and Jews are equal partners in the work before us – and all people of good faith are to be treated as true neighbors. For those of us who are Catholic, we are working to recollect the hierarchy to what they are called. In the midst of massive hierarchical corruption, I echo what Jesus said about the scribes and Pharisees in Matthew 23:2,3, “…practice and observe whatever they tell you, but not what they do, for they preach, but do not practice.” And in this, I note that what the Church authentically tells us is contained in Scripture and the Magisterium, not the vain and mindless ramblings and revolt of faithless leaders. If any should preach to you seeking to correct the “errors” of Christ and His Apostles, “let him be accursed” to you. (Galatians 1:8).

St. Patrick and the Snakes

St. Patrick entered the pagan land of Ireland to universal hostility. Amazingly, there are no well-attested miracles attributed to him, save the banishment of the snakes. Even the pious legends about him make for thin gruel when it comes to miracles. Yet in the midst

the Great St. Michael, by Rafaello Sanzio
The Great St. Michael – Rafaello Sanzio

of this universal hostility, he founded some 300 Churches and baptized over 120,000 people. Until its recent reversion to pagan sensibility, Ireland had been the most reliably Catholic country in the world for over 1,500 years.

Whether God opens a new age of miracles or whether your fidelity unto death is, itself, the miracle, it is through the laity and the mid-level clergy that the world and the faith will be renewed, an era of peace will settle over the world, and the Immaculate Heart will triumph.

That is what the apostolate of the laity is. Though your leaders abandon faith, though those you should be able to count on abandon you, though the world attacks and despises you for your goodness and charity, keep faith and live the prayer of doing. When you do this, you are not alone. The people of the kingdom and the people of heaven will rise together and God will re-establish His kingdom among us.

Convert what snakes you can and banish the rest. Be the miracle.

278 thoughts on “Ballad of the Ordinary Man III: The Apostolate of the Laity

  1. I’m in and I’m inviting you to visit and speak to our “tribe”. Willing and thankful, God has made it clear ours is one of his “houses”. Contact me at (edited out email address) to set the date in May. We are in Solon, Iowa between Cedar Rapids and Iowa City on Lake Macbride.

    Liked by 4 people

    1. Welcome to commenting, Patty. I edited out your address for safety’s sake on a public forum. While we haven’t yet formally heard the route Charlie will take when he launches a nationwide journey, his visits around the country in previous years have been scheduled via the wonderful volunteer coordinator of his schedule. For all who are interested in a visit from Charlie, remain with us here and simply watch for an announcement when Charlie discerns the time has arrived to hit the road. God bless you, Patty, and all the folks from your state – Iowa – where I was born and raised.

      Liked by 3 people

      1. Charlie & Beckita please count us in! We are here to help you to do God’s Will any way you need. You are welcome back to Southern Maine any time. There is always a bed, home cooked meals, and enthusiastic supporters here for you. God bless you & thank you for all that you do!
        Beth, Joe, Bob & Earle

        Liked by 4 people

        1. SO great to hear from you, Beth, Joe, Bob & Earle. May we all keep a vigil of prayer for Charlie as we continue to take our next right steps right we are, wherever in the world we may be. God bless you all, too, as we continue sailing onward, in solidarity, through the choppiest waters yet to come.

          Liked by 1 person

  2. Thank you Charlie,

    Your words give hope!

    I sure need it! I am so sick and tired of being sick and tired of this whole mess!

    injustice abounds and it is killing me. I am so furious at the Pope’s anemic hand slapping response to the abuse crisis that I can’t stand to look at any photos of him. I had the same reaction to Barrack Obama photos.

    There is increased disunity in my home, and community. I do envy the dead who have finished the good race already.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Little, a coupla’ thoughts. Primarily, I see two kinds of fatigue. Oh, there will always be disagreeable, wearisome, burdensome folks around, and they can certainly add to our fatigue if we allow it. It’s the kind of fatigue that comes from overburdening ourselves with worries and battles that aren’t ours. 80% of the time I find myself thinking, “not my clowns, not my circus.”

      Then there’s the fatigue of an honest day’s work, whatever we’re called to. However difficult the work to each, part of the reward is peace. I try to avoid staunching the flow with comparisons and thinking the other person may or may not have it easier. What a grace to be exactly who we are, right where we’re at. Yes, folks in Heaven are alive, but so are we.

      Half the battle is to not be a disagreeable, wearisome, burdensome person ourselves, which is achieved by doing our best to live in God’s Will. Again, best to avoid the comparisons and envy and let God keep tabs on the details of the journey. Any honest person in the struggle would tell you that none of this comes easy.

      A quick afterthought about horses. They’re natural and impressive runners, but the fact is they really just want to lounge around with other horses in lush, quiet pastures. And who can blame them? I came upon three mustangs snoozing on their sides in a sandy wash some weeks back. A band stallion was on the far bank keeping watch. I was quiet, and didn’t cause any alarm because they’re familiar with me. Just watched the stallion for a moment, until he gave the others a nearly imperceptible cue (“Get up, let us go.”) So, they popped up and off they went at a gallop.

      Oh, I don’t begrudge any critter their rest, but there’s just nothing quite like the awesome beauty of a band of stallions hitting full stride.

      Liked by 3 people

  3. Just did a reread of ” The Harbinger”. As to how people respond to diasters , we, as a Nation need to respond as did Ninevah !!!

    Liked by 3 people

  4. NEWS & MILINET: Articles for Christians –2 April
    What Did Pope Francis Mean By His Remarks About ‘Proselytism?’

    Fox Business Host Slams Pope as ‘Weak’ on Walls, Socialism

    God Chose You to Live at This Moment in Church History

    Five Lenten Personality Disorders and Cures

    Unplanned Helps Pro-Lifers Tell the Truth about Abortion

    Disney’s ‘Dumbo’ fails to soar at box office as faith-based film ‘Unplanned’ surprises with strong debut

    SCOTUS Declines to Dismiss Charges against Pro-Life Activists


    How the Left Keeps Me Religious

    One weird state, three weird cities
    By Joseph Max Lewis

    America’s electoral college is a collection of representatives from each of our states, elected by their states to support a specific Presidential candidate. They meet and vote by state in a second election to finalize the election of our President. It’s a system that ensures anyone who wants to be President has to appeal to a large section of the entire country, not just the largest population centers. The college ensures every vote counts.
    Now, incensed they’ll no longer be allowed to join their illegal alien pals in beating American citizens on the streets of our cities, or to riot and burn buildings to the ground, persecute police officers and use the same bathroom as little girls, enraged leftists demand we amend the Constitution to abolish the electoral college because:
    Hillary won the popular vote!!!!
    It’s true. According to the Christian Science Monitor, Hillary Clinton won the U.S. popular vote by about 2.9 million votes. Boy, that seems like a lot, but according to CBS News Hillary won California by 4,269,978 votes.
    So take out California and Donald Trump won the popular vote total of 49 states by over 1 million votes. Since the left wants to talk about amending the Constitution, maybe instead of amending the Constitution to abolish the electoral college we should amend it to abolish counting California’s votes!
    Seriously, Hillary lost the popular vote total of 49 out of 50 states by over 1 million votes and really only won with California, and, if you get right down to it, probably only won California in Los Angeles, San Francisco and San Diego.
    Who knows if she really even won there?
    In Michigan for example, Wayne County Clerk Cathy Garrett has reported that 248 of Detroit’s 662 precincts – that’s 37 percent – tabulated more ballots than the number of voters tallied by workers in the poll books. During Michigan’s presidential recount Secretary of State Ruth Johnson’s office announced “significant mismatch” problems at roughly 20 of Detroit’s 490 precincts.
    Mrs. Clinton won 95 percent of Detroit’s vote.
    Regardless, if being ruled by weirdos in California isn’t scary enough, what about being ruled by 3 weird cities?
    In the 2016 Presidential election, Hillary won the popular vote in New York City, 1,969,920 votes to Trumps 461,174 – over 1.5 million, in Los Angeles, Hillary won, 1,601,382 to Trumps, 525,308 – over 1 million votes and in Chicago and Cook County, Hillary won by 1.1 million votes.
    In just New York City, Los Angeles and Chicago, Hillary won over 3.6 million more votes than Trump did. Are these the people you want deciding who becomes President?
    Everyone agrees, even people who live in one, there’s something about living in a big city that makes you weird. As reported by Travel and Leisure: “To Caitlin Sandburg, her hometown of San Francisco provides a safe haven—for oddballs.
    “Once you’ve been here long enough, nothing surprises you,” says the hospitality exec. “Whether it’s a naked person walking down the street, someone dressed in full drag, or ‘Burning Man’ types, no one really raises an eyebrow. Being a freak here is so normal.”
    Even so, according to Travel and Leisure readers, there are cities that are weirder than San Francisco and two of them are Los Angeles and New York City. Noticeably missing is Chicago. Evidently Chicago’s not weird, just homicidal. Chicago remains our country’s murder capital. According to the Associated Press, “One of the most violent years in Chicago history ended with a sobering tally: 762 homicides, the most in two decades in the city and more than New York and Los Angeles combined.” This is the city that re-elected Rahm Emanuel as its Mayor in 2015.
    We’re not a collection of cities or one big state, we’re a continental nation with many interests that all deserve to be represented. That’s what our wonderful electoral college system does, it gives all of us a fair shake.
    This is a column of opinion and satire. The author knows of no undisclosed facts. To comment or learn more, contact Lewis, at and click on Rimersburg Rules. © Joseph M. Lewis the author of Separation of Church and State and The Diaries of Pontius Pilate.

    The Dems’ Plan to Make Elections Obsolete


    Valerie Jarrett: I still haven’t accepted Trump is president

    Dana Loesch Reminds Us Of Eric Holder’s Shady Past With This Single Tweet

    Federal Judge Rules Calif. Magazine Confiscation Law Unconstitutional

    The Biggest College Scandal of All

    NJ Governor: ‘I Look Forward to Signing’ Bill Legalizing Assisted Suicide

    Nielsen Orders ‘Emergency Surge Operations’ on Southwest Border

    Allen West: The Real ‘Manufactured Crisis’ Perpetrated by the Progressive, Socialist Left

    Maryland Assisted Suicide Bill Dies
    VP Mike Pence Tweets: ‘Good to See Movie Theaters’ Showing ‘Unplanned’ Movie
    John Huber leaves Congress in dark on FBI probe: ‘It’s like Where’s Waldo?’
    Cocaine production ‘through the roof,’ moves through U.S. to meet expanding global demand
    China Bans All Types of Fentanyl, Cutting Supply of Deadly Drug to U.S. and Fulfilling Pledge to Trump
    Stunning setbacks in Turkey’s elections dent Erdogan’s aura of invincibility
    Trump has a Russia problem in Venezuela


    Liked by 3 people

      1. This is getting interesting. SoG Maria Esperanza forewarned of troubles with some from the Asian race and she also said a large and a small country would conspire to bring great danger to the world. Onward through these waters. Steady, in the Lord, as she goes.

        Liked by 1 person

  5. On this 14th anniversary of his passing, St. John Paul II please intercede for all of us, esp. unbelieving scientists…

    Liked by 5 people

  6. Latest Medjugorje Message, April 2, 2019 – Apparitions to Mirjana

    “Dear children, as a mother who knows her children, I know that you are crying out for my Son. I know that you are crying out for truth, for peace, for that which is pure and not deceptive. That is why I, as a mother, through the love of God, am addressing you and calling you that, by prayer and a pure and open heart within yourselves, you may come to know my Son – His love, His merciful heart. My Son saw beauty in all things.

    He seeks the good in all souls-even that which is little and hidden-so as to forgive evil. Therefore, my children, apostles of my love, I am calling you to adore Him, to ceaselessly give Him thanks, and to be worthy. Because He has spoken to you divine words, the words of God, the words which are for all and forever.

    Therefore, my children, live joy, radiance, unity and mutual love. This is what you need in today’s world. In this way you will be apostles of my love. In this way you will witness my Son in the right way. Thank you. ”

    Liked by 5 people

  7. Charlie, this is such a rich, beautiful piece. So clear and concise. So practical! So hopeful! I read it last evening and again this evening.
    Today’s Lenten reflection on the Gospel [John5:1-16] by a Redemptorists Fr J McGowan, lined up nicely with what you are saying. The incident is where Christ simply tells the crippled man to “Rise, take up your mat, and walk.” The guy is healed! Fr McGowan states that this incident brings home to us the fact that the power of God never dispenses with human effort. God works with our cooperation. Pray, keep asking, but we also have to DO. Sounds like TNRS to me.

    Liked by 4 people

  8. We are so grateful for Mother Angelica!

    The beautiful prayer below is an excerpt from EWTN Founder Mother Angelica’s book, Ad Lib with the Lord. It is especially helpful when you’re having a bad day!

    Check it out below:

    Prayer in Times of Discouragement

    “O God, my mind whirls around in confusion and my soul seems destitute of all consolation. It is as if all the world and all my life wore telescoped into one moment and I carry the burden of it all. I cannot see any future except tomorrow being another today.

    All my yesterdays crowd around me, some accusing and some regret filled. It is like a prison with a thousand voices shouting for attention.

    Divine Jailor, You have the key to release my soul from the prison of discouragement. Unlock the doors and let me roam freely into the regions of Your love. Deliver me from the tyranny of my own will.

    Surely You take no pleasure in my soul disquieted within me, for then I am wrapped in myself: Do I hear You whisper, “Unlock the door for the key is within. I wait ready to enter and comfort you.”

    Jesus, I trust in you!

    Liked by 7 people

  9. Steve BC, all of a sudden I can’t like anything on this blog. Yesterday I left a comment….but today I can’t like anything. What happened? What do I do? Any ideas? Thank you.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Diane, if you click on the “Menu” bar at the top right hand side of the page, among the list is “ANSWERS TO TECHIE QUESTIONS”. On the page that opens you can read about what to do to get the “Like” function going. I realize it was working before but is not working now, yet, so many of us have bumped into moments like these with WordPress and going through the steps described may lead you to the problem. Let us know if you need more assistance, Diane.

      Liked by 1 person

            1. Diane, appears to have removed that option to stay logged in a few months ago. I have had to log in every day ever since.

              Liked by 1 person

              1. Gosh, then why do you think I’m able to remain logged in, SteveBC? Every time I come to the site, I’m here without logging in. Interesting.


                1. Beckita, I believe that the need to log in begins once you log out and have to log back in. There will be no “Stay logged in” option. I think the status of “Stay logged in” will remain until the first time you log out after being permanently logged in.

                  So my question to you and MP is whether you have stayed logged in over the last 3 months, or have you recently logged out and had to log back in?

                  Doug, iPhones are different. I have to log into Twitter every day on my Mac but am permanently logged into Twitter on my iPhone.

                  Liked by 2 people

                    1. Thanks for trying this, MP. I’ve been quietly hunting for an answer to this because I’m not the only person affected. It’s causing a fair amount of upset among people who are not necessarily tech-savvy. For that reason as well as personal laziness, I would like to know how to get back on easy log-ons and staying logged in.

                      Your test cancels one of my hypotheses. Now I’m going to have to work up another hypothesis! 😀

                      Whatever the reason, a number of people are having to log in every day (including me), and I don’t know why some people are having to do that and some are not.

                      I’m open to ideas. Anyone have any suggestions?

                      Liked by 1 person

                    2. Yes, MP, that’s the problem. If a person is logged in permanently from 3 months ago, that will hold, but as soon as you log out once, you’re dead. You have to log in pretty much daily after that (depends on whether you sleep your computer or shut it down). I use a Reply button to log in using the blue “W” icon and then reload the page, but that’s a daily pain.

                      If this were WPorg, I could modify one of the settings pages (a PHP page) with persistent code, but this is WPcom, so I can’t do that here.

                      I’m still looking for possibilities to try. Ever hopeful!

                      Liked by 1 person

                  1. Steve, In order to access the computer facility to be able to restore my “like” marking ability, I logged on using a bad password, so I could reset. I did manage to reset with the new password, but did not spot any capability to restore the “like” function. I also made a comment about that problem.

                    Liked by 2 people

                    1. Yes, Jack, you’ve found the loss of the “Stay logged in” option, as have I. The reason for some people being able to stay logged in and some not is a mystery to me at the moment.

                      Are you having to log in every day or are you being kept logged in automatically since your password reset?

                      Liked by 1 person

                  2. What you more precisely say is correct, Steve. While there’s no actual option, “stay logged in”, in essence it is what happens unless I intentionally “log out.” However, the reason I mentioned it is because you reported that you need to “log in every day” which seems odd to me since I don’t have to do that. It’s that variance that I wondered about… why one person must log in daily while another simply remains logged in.


                    1. Right, Doug?! Love it! 🙂 And I’m an artist at heart… ever freely interpreting. Give me a full keyboard and the precise chords with the precise notes and watch the magic happen. (Or as the person who first subbed for me to accompany at Sunday Mass said: “What the heck?! Where were all those notes you play?!”)

                      Liked by 1 person

                  3. Hi SteveBC and all. I have had to log in again myself several times, but it is because I clear my browsing data often (I’ve been known to pick up viruses so am trying to be careful). Don’t know if anyone else has been clearing their data more often? Once I’m logged in, it’s permanent unless I do a data “purification”. 🙂

                    Liked by 2 people

  10. HI Charlie and all, I’ve been so busy with teaching and tutoring that I’ve seemed rather ‘out of pocket’ to a number of friends, colleagues, and relatives. But I have been reading even when I had no time for comment.

    Some general observations about the theme of what we do in this time:

    1. Over half a century ago, even in the 1920’s 30’s, 40’s and 50’s— a number of Catholic writers, thinkers, commentators, and statesmen made statements such as, ‘if the current trends continue, … Western Civilization may well collapse under its own intellectual weight’ — or, ‘The barbarians are at the gates, we need great saints to lead us out of this moral desert’, — or, ‘Socialism will ultimately destroy the Christian societal edifice built upon Graeco-Roman Culture – that culture as refined by 2,000 years of Christianity.

    2. As it says in Scripture, for those of us who were part of the War Tocsin alarms from thinking Catholics of the 20th Century, ‘That which we had feared the most has come upon us’. I can assure one and all that it serves no comfort to say, ‘told you so’. And that is why you don’t hear people who could, actually say that. Why not? Because it is so saddening to rethink how all of this could have been avoided if more people had simply answered heavens multitudinous calls to repentance.

    3. Or as the cartoon character, Pogo, used to opine, ‘We have met the enemy, and he is us.’

    I have one main observation for the finest course for those of us who recognize the dire straits of our current situation: Besides the obvious necessity for a ‘regula’ of Sacramental life and grace, we must concentrate on the virtue of Charity – all types of charity. We must attach ourselves to BOTH corporal and spiritual charity.

    As St. Paul teaches, Spiritual Charity is superior to Corporal Charity [yet both are absolutely necessary].

    For those who might ask, what is he getting at here, recently posted to my facebook page about the necessity of loving and praying for our enemies, and mentioned the name of a rather infamous American Cardinal – then and still in residence at a Capuchin Monastery in Middle America. Jesus wants him to repent and be saved. If I don’t also wish that from my heart – I am truly no part of any kind of Remnant. Rather, I’m an integral part of the problem which has brought us to this sorry contemporary state of affairs.

    Only love can conquer evil – and Our Lord and Our Lady wish us to be pullers at the oars of saving Charity, rather than passengers in the Charity boat.

    All my love in Christ


    Liked by 7 people

    1. Great to hear from you, Desmond. Amen to what you write! All of it. Our leaders reflect who we – collectively – had become, both temporally and spiritually. SO grateful for the authentic visitations and messages from Our Lord and Our Lady which have awakened an army of intercessors, people who are not only concerned about their own conversion and salvation but who realize any mother, and especially our Mother, wants to gather round ALL her children at times of great celebration. I realize the complete Triumph of Our Lady’s Immaculate Heart will be missing the ones who CHOOSE to defy God and persist in refusing to bend the knee. But until the end of this transition into the period of Peace, promised at Fatima, it’s so worth the effort to pray for ALL of our Mother’s children. It was she who, also at Fatima, conveyed that too many poor souls go to hell because they lack the prayers of believers.

      Prayers for you and your work with your students, Desmond.

      Liked by 3 people

  11. Good news everyone! Chicago elected a gay black woman as mayor! Lori Lightfoot is lucky the lesbian black left-handed Muslim tranny ‘woman’ didn’t run. She would have won for sure despite having only $28.50 in *aers campaign fund.

    Good luck, Lori. I know you’ll have that city back to first world status in no time.

    *Source: Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender Resource Center


    1. Couldn’t find the news article with this link, Christopher. If you resend the correct link, I’ll replace this one with it.


      1. Sorry, Beckita. Here’s the link where I found the news article.

        The link I originally provided should take you to the LGBT Resource Center. You know, just so nobody thinks I’m making up fake pronouns out of thin air. In fact, maybe we should all study the chart there so as not to trigger anyone during everyday conversation. 🙂

        My usual ZeroHedge advisory: The comment sections there get pretty ruff-n-tumble. Not for polite company.

        Liked by 3 people

  12. I’m thinking that the below verse & The Lord’s direction through St Faustina are same, Same. Fix on Jesus & Trust in Him ….. especially in confusing & troubled times ….. like These-Days!!!

    HeartLight Daily Verse – 3 April

    Hebrews 12:2
    Let us fix our eyes on Jesus, the author and perfecter of our Faith, who for the joy set before him endured the cross, scorning its shame, and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God.

    Thoughts on today’s verse:
    “He drives where he looks, he drives where he looks!” That statement by a disgruntled elderly wife about her husband really spoke the truth. But then it’s true of all of us. We “live like where we look” That’s why it’s important to fix our eyes on Jesus!
    Almighty and holy God, without your grace and the gift of your salvation I could not approach you with confidence. Thank you for sending Jesus! Thank you for his life, his death, his resurrection, his exaltation and his intercession. I pledge this day to keep my eyes on him! Through him I pray. Amen.
    Visit for more

    NEWS & MILINET: Articles for Christians

    ‘Christ is alive!’ — Pope issues apostolic exhortation ‘Christus Vivit’ to young people following synod

    Why is Socialism Gaining Popularity?

    Hmm: AOC’s Former Staffer Has An Interesting Admission About ‘Democratic Socialism’

    How Now Shall We Live?

    By the Lakes of Babylon

    Exclusive – Rep. Byrne: Bullying, Boycotts, and Censorship – The Left Is Trying to Silence Conservatives

    Chinese city offers cash incentives to informants on illegal religious groups

    Lori Lightfoot Elected Chicago’s First Black, Lesbian Mayor

    Texas Bills Would Protect Religious Freedom From LGBTQ Bullying

    Sen. Tom Cotton Calls for IRS Investigation into Political Hate Group Southern Poverty Law Center

    It’s Time For Hillary Clinton To Answer For Her Role In The Deep State Coup!


    George Washington University students vote to remove ‘offensive’ mascot

    House Democrat speaks out: ‘I am offended by this whole conversation about socialism’

    Inslee Calls Parts of the Country ‘Non-Enlightened’

    House Democrats have repeatedly blocked anti-infanticide vote. Republicans just made the next play to force their hands


    Castro Plans to Grant Millions Amnesty, Gut Immigration Enforcement

    How Bad Does Border Have To Be For Democrats To Admit It’s An Emergency?

    5 Federal Courts on Mexican Border Lead Nation in Criminal Convictions

    The Cruel Joke of Reparations

    A tale of two Michigans

    The Human Gated Community

    Asian, Latino families take on sex education in California schools

    ASIA/INDIA – Suicide of a Hindu girl: extremists attack a Catholic school

    The movie abortion supporters don’t want you to see–Marc A. Thiessen
    Pope Francis says Catholic Church should support women’s rights
    Satanic symbols and shattered statues: Several Catholic churches have been under attack in France


    Liked by 2 people

    1. Thanks, Bob. It’s a gem. I love the work of Janet Smith. She speaks and writes frankly and is fearless in wanting to bring all to light for the purpose of cleansing and accountability so we may embrace reform and renewal.

      Liked by 2 people

  13. Charlie, I don’t know why you don’t see it. GOD HAS ALREADY INTERVENED. And precisely when you said it would happen. With patients , the fruits will become more recognizable. The storm though, still comes. God bless us all.

    Liked by 2 people

  14. Faith & reason are our best foundation, as the miraculous does loose it’s wonder with the doubts that creep in over time.

    Spending time reading the New Testament does inspire & strengthen faith for some reason, maybe the words in the gospels themselves have some life-giving nourishment that our souls need, but we cannot perceive…

    Liked by 2 people

  15. I sometimes gives this as a explanation for faith:

    There’s no other standard of morality on earth that is comparable to Christianity, human nature wants to rebel against the Bible & it’s rules. If Christianity was a man made invention, it would of died when Christ was crucified, and most certainly after the Judaism (of that time) and the Romans would of made quick work of those early followers. Christianity stands as a testimony to God & Christ after 2000 years because God miraculously helped Christians, otherwise human nature would of done a way with the Bible a long time ago.

    People try to claim there’s other morality out there, but communism shows just how cruel & oppressive atheists can become when the power is in their hands, I don’t need to explain the evils of Islam, and when asked whether a non-Christian can go to Heaven my response is: “it’s like a camel trying to go through the eye of a needle” how can one be moral if one doesn’t have reference & standard to go by?


  16. Sorry coming to this discussion late…however, I thought this piece from Charlie was excellent and enlightening. Today, while doing some more reading, I came across an interesting piece from a new interview of Cardinal Sarah, such a beloved man! He will have a new book out in Sept, which is soon, the way things are going. But he was most profound and I hope others will read it. Just a few notes:” This quote is from an interview given by Cardinal Sarah!
    “When the Church becomes overburdened with human structures, it obstructs the light of God shining out in her and through her. We are tempted to think that our action and our ideas will save the Church. It would be better to begin by letting her save herself. “…”We need saints who dare to see all things through the eyes of faith, who dare to be enlightened by the light of God.” I thought of Charlie when I read this last line.

    Liked by 3 people

    1. Robill, I’m excited to read the English translation of Cardinal Sarah’s new book. Thanks for these quotes. So agree with your closing line AND I know the ability to “… be saints who dare to see all things through the eyes of faith, who dare to be enlightened by the light of God.” is exactly what Charlie has been preparing each one of us to be and do. May God complete this good work He has begun in Charlie and in each of us

      Liked by 2 people

Comments are closed.