Be Merciful, O Lord – Short Takes


By Charlie Johnston

Over the weekend, I got into a little dispute with one of our key leaders here, Steve BC. I had written, at one point, in my last article, that “there is no such thing as ‘settled’ science.’ Steve objected, noting that there ARE some areas that are settled. I responded that I know, I was just intentionally using a little hyperbole to emphasize the point. He was astonished – and even more upset that I would intentionally do that. At first, I was baffled as to why he was upset. Using hyperbole for effect is a common rhetorical tool. I thought about it over a day and concluded he was entirely right and I was entirely wrong.

A lot of ideologues on the left constantly engage in scientism. They claim what they want to be true to be “Science!” when it is no such thing, just an effort to dress up their own opinion. This started, I suppose, with Karl Marx claiming his political and economic philosophy of communism to be “science.” It is irritating. Those who engage in scientism routinely ignore science when it completely contradicts them, such as the genetic reality of gender or the actual humanity of the unborn. They falsely claim “settled science” to support their dubious, disputed ideological policies – such as man-made climate change. The truth is, they know next to nothing either of science or the scientific method. It seemed reasonable to me to kick back at their extravagant, ignorant claims – particularly when they are so condescending in their extravagant ignorance.

What got me, as I contemplated the dispute, was thinking of the doctrine of faith. There are people who think the more harsh and severe a practice is, the holier it is – and are constantly identifying things they don’t like as ‘sin,’ – when they are merely things they don’t like. This irritates me. But I realized that if someone of stature tried to combat this by saying that there is no such thing as “settled” doctrine, I would be furious. It would not just be a rebuke to those who try to abuse doctrine to grind their personal axes; it would be an offense to honest people of good will, for it would substitute one ugly false caricature with its opposite – and what truth is there?

There is such a thing as settled science, though not nearly as much as the ignorant want to think. The scientific method is one of the noblest tools at our disposal for finding truth – and is slowly pushing back the boundaries of ignorance of the natural world. There is such a thing as settled doctrine. It is not as extensive as the advocates of a harsh asceticism want to think – but a LOT more than modern enemies of faith, both in and out of clerical robes, acknowledge.

This site was designed to be a place where truth – and the search for it – is pre-eminent and pre-eminently respected. Hyperbole can be a useful rhetorical tool, but only when it is patently obvious to everyone that that is what it is – and is being used for effect. When applied obscurely, it is an offense and a falsehood that compounds the very offensive falsehood it is set against. We have many people from many walks of life who follow this website; scientists, doctors, lawyers, scholars, economists, architects…you name it. Each has devoted  himself to a particular discipline – and they deserve a lot better than coming here to see their discipline caricatured. I screwed up – and more badly than I originally realized. I am grateful for the expertise that you all bring to bear here. And I am grateful for a team that, though it treats me with respect, will tell me candidly that I have screwed up when I actually screw up. I will do better on this – though it is a comfort to have people around who help catch me when I fall of my own foolishness.

Thanks, Steve.


I watched the movie, “My Girl,” the other night. It is a movie that has a lot of heart, both funny and poignant. My kids and I watched it together and loved it when they were little. I chose it both because I enjoyed it back in the 90’s and because the screenwriter, Laurice Molinari (credited in the movie by her maiden name, Elehwany) had come to a presentation of mine a few years ago with her husband – and said she was a regular reader.

Among the many different folks here, we have a nice little contingent in Hollywood. The creator of the premium TV series, “True Detective,” is the son of a key coordinator of ours in Louisiana. The series is very dark in places, but in the first season, I saw how the creator used the tension between the two main characters as a device to deeply explore his own attitudes to faith and religion.

Peter MacNicol, star of such shows as 24, Ally McBeal, Numbers, Veep, and the movie, Sophie’s Choice, secured and paid for the venue for my first presentation in Los Angeles. At a private dinner for organizers a few years ago, I was delighted to meet his wife of some 30 years – and he proudly told me of the circle of committed Catholics in Hollywood peter macnicol and mewho collaborate with each other on projects for the faith. He was very proud of its history, noting that Gary Cooper had taken the lead in raising money to pay for the erection of a great Parish Church years ago (I forget which Parish). I loved MacNicol in Numbers and Sophie’s Choice, in particular. He has such a quirky, dry, understated sense of humor on screen that tickles me…and I had asked what he was playing in now. He told me “Veep,” but said his character is loathesome and asked me not to watch it because of that. I laughed, but he was serious – so I have never watched it (though I have lately done a reprise of Numbers).

We have people of good will here from across the spectrum of society at large. In Washington (and, actually, in a few other places) I had people from the State Dept. and the CIA in the audience. (Some suggested that the CIA folks were there to assure themselves I am just a nut – but one of our top friends is a retired CIA agent who cut his teeth at the Bay of Pigs. For many of all these people, this site is an island of sanity and good will in a world gone mad with vitriol. My little dispute with Steve BC recollected to me how important it is that we preserve this island in truth and good will for all who value the same.


Rumors abound that Atlanta’s Archbishop, Wilton Gregory, will be appointed to head the Archdiocese of Washington, D.C. I was delighted when I heard this.

Why, you might ask, would I be delighted to hear an LGBT-promoting Bishop is heading to one of the nation’s key Archdioceses? Well, it was clear that under this pontificate, only seemingly heterodox clerics need apply for such an important position. But there is more to the story where Archbishop Gregory is concerned.

He was my Bishop when I was in Belleville, Illinois – and I was trumpet player at the Cathedral. He originally was brought in to clean up some of the most hideous cases of sexual abuse in the country. Belleville was a spider’s nest before he got there. He did a good, solid job…and was well-liked in a Diocese that, at first, was not favorably disposed to being headed by a black Bishop. In most Masses he celebrated there, I was in the balcony with my trumpet (whenever the Bishop does a Mass, it is an event). I noticed early on that he had a magnificent way with children. They loved him. He was lively, engaging and natural with them without the annoying condescension or singsong nonsense most take on when trying to relate to kids. He is the best cleric of any type I have ever seen in how he speaks with and engages children.

At the time the sexual scandals erupted in the Church in America 17 years ago (a gentle hill compared to where we are globally today), Gregory was the President of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB). I was troubled, for though he was an effective Bishop with a lot of heart, I did not hear much in the way of defending the truths of faith from him.

I lived near the Cathedral then. Often during the week, I would walk to the Cathedral and back, sometimes sitting inside for a bit. I used these opportunities for prayer. One day in the spring of 2002, I was praying specifically for Bishop Gregory – and wondering whether he would help resolve these things in the upcoming Conference of American Bishops in Dallas. Just as I came in view of the Cathedral in the distance, I was internally shown some things about the Bishop. He was overly concerned about image and worried way too much about being liked, but the Lord showed me that he had great depths – and God would use him one day as a hero of the faith in a time of crisis. Now no one needs accept this, but it is the coin I have followed all my life, so I was content.

The Dallas Conference, on the other hand, infuriated me. Jesus was scarcely mentioned and the Bishops acted like the Board of Directors for Catholicism, Inc., coming up with pathetic temporal “norms” that did not address the spiritual nature of the crisis at all. In the aftermath of the conference, I wrote Bishop Gregory an angrily intemperate letter – that touched bluntly on some prophetic things. (Trust me, I can do angrily intemperate with the best of them). I handled it in a way where I was sure he would get it and read it.

A couple of years later, I had to arrange a private meeting with the Bishop and a US Senate candidate. Awkward situation. I called my original spiritual director, a man of

Archbishop Wilton Gregory
Archbishop Wilton Gregory

great institutional heft who knew, advised, and was respected by most of the Bishops in the US. I told him the situation and asked if he would give Bishop Gregory a call. My director was curious about what I wanted him to say. “Oh, nothing substantial,” I said, “Just assure him that I am not a nut.” My director howled with laughter and said he would call him that day.

As it turned out, the meeting was just with the three of us…the Bishop, the Senate candidate and me. To my pleasant surprise, Bishop Gregory was very kind and downright affectionate to me. Without letting the other know what was going on, he quoted sections of my letter approvingly to me with real warmth and kindness. It was touching and reassuring. But it was obvious enough that, after we left, my candidate asked me what the deal was with the interactions between the Bishop and me. I just told him, “We have history.”

There are some men in clerical robes who have made themselves enemies of the faith, determined to remake it in their own disordered image. I do not believe that Archbishop Gregory is one of them, even though I often disagree with certain actions he takes. Rather, I think he just does not want to give offense and wants everyone to get along.

He is a gifted managerial Bishop. Yet I am more convinced than ever that, when push comes to shove, he will remember and show that, first and foremost, he is an Apostle of the Living Christ. And the very attributes that lead him to play with heterodox claims will, in that time, lead him to proclaim the faith truly and boldly, but with a gentle kindness that draws people back to it. God has a plan – one that uses both our strengths and our flaws to accomplish His Sovereign Will.

301 thoughts on “Be Merciful, O Lord – Short Takes

  1. Love this post, Charlie. How heartening it is to see you live what you teach and advocate for in these times… which is foundational for peaceful, ordered living in any times. May we ever emulate such as this in our community, for none among us is without mess ups/missteps. Thanks so very much for the tip about Archbishop Gregory! You’ve shared just enough to inspire us all to keep him in prayer if, indeed, he is named Archbishop of Washington DC because, I think, whoever becomes the ordinary there is going to need a lotta’ backup prayer.

    Prayers for our friends in Hollywood who are keeping the faith!

    Liked by 10 people

  2. Thanks for the interesting article, Charlie. I have another short take that is on a completely different subject, but one in which you and your readers might be interested because it involves a subject that you have written about before, the deep state. Last night, Bishop Emeritus Rene Gracida posted the following article on his blog. I read it and thought that it was a very interesting one in which Mr. Harry Richardson of “The Pickering Post” wrote about all our corrupt political/government connections to date.

    I have to link Bishop Emeritus’s article because when today I tried to get back to the actual article, which I was able to see last night, on “The Pickering Post” website, it has completely disappeared. Somebody does not want us to see these connect-the-dots connections. See the link below…

    We are in trouble as you have said. We do live in a deep state.

    Liked by 4 people

    1. Hi texasooz. I have read /heard this information previously from additional sources including the Q posts and certain Fox News programs. Most amazing to me is that the crooks have not yet been arrested and tried with the guilty placed in prison.

      Liked by 5 people

    2. Boris Pasternak, best known as author of Dr. Zhivago, lived through the Russian Revolution when he was a very young man. He wrote that, a few years into it, everyone realized it was all lies – and that you could be jailed or even executed if you did not pretend to believe the lies…that you had to watch what you said even among friends, for some of them thought to advance themselves by denouncing you for making fun of the lies. Strange we have reached that stage in this country even before actual revolution.

      Bishop Gracida does some great work. I like his eye for compiling stories that should be noted. At 95 years old, he continues to chug merrily away. What an amazing man!

      Liked by 8 people

      1. Amen! Truly an amazing man! After reading his book, “An Ordinary’s Not So Ordinary Life” it is no wonder that God has kept him on this earth. I learn something from him everyday He is a good shepherd.

        Liked by 5 people

      2. ” and that you could be jailed or even executed if you did not pretend to believe the lies…that you had to watch what you said even among friends, for some of them thought to advance themselves by denouncing you for making fun of the lies. Strange we have reached that stage in this country even before actual revolution.”
        Sounds like China, Venezuela etc etc.

        Liked by 4 people

      3. Hi Charlie. I’ve been a reader since the beginning of your blog and have been to hear you speak twice. As I was reading your post on Bishop Gregory I could not help but think your comments could equally and as charitably be applied to Pope Francis especially the last one! In fact, if I wouldn’t have known better, it sounded to me like that’s who you were describing!! Totus tuus, Maria! Sheri (Michigan)

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          1. Me too Phillip Frank and I can’t help but think about when Charlie used to warn us about the schism in the Church not being about the liberals leaving the Church (which I always thought it would be!!) because the satan is way too smart for that!! Instead it was going to be those people who think they are “more Catholic than the pope” leaving!! (not sure of his exact words!) As I watch what is going on it seems he was right!! Do you know anyone who has a good solid blog who thinks the way we do about Pope Francis? (I get really tired of all the attacks) Thank you!!


              1. Mark Mallet is in the Holy Land. He claims he is very broke, but he has made this trip. I find this odd and disconcerting. …. I follow another fellow who gets “messages” and he was in Paris recently. Also, asking for money. …….Charlie lives a simple life and goes to Mt. Meeker when he needs to recharge. As far as I can see, Charlie never asks for money…… If Christ is in the Eucharist, then why do these messengers need to travel all over the place to “find” Him? …..Mark Mallet has questioned the validity of Sondra Abrahams and her mission which God gave her, though she lives a simple and faithful life dedicated to Christ. She never takes donations…. I sometimes question Mark Mallett.


                1. While I don’t always agree with what Mark Mallett writes, I think it’s very possible that someone may have gifted him with the Holy Land pilgrimage and I think that would be a lovely gesture given to one who has, recently, been enduring some great trials.

                  I must also say, being one who has made pilgrimage to many shrines in many places in the world over a period of roughly 25 years, my opportunities to make pilgrimage were never driven by a desire to find Christ in a way that diminished my great love for Him in His Eucharistic Presence.

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                  1. Beckita is correct: Someone paid for Marks trip to the Holy Land.

                    “…For many, this ministry has become a life-line in the growing insanity of our times, and so I thank God for being so good to all of us through this little apostolate. However, upon my return from the Holy Land (which was paid for by a very kind priest!), faced with a pile of bills and taxes and nothing left in our bank account, I am reminded how I am very much dependent upon Divine Providence. That is, I am dependent upon your generosity in helping me to continue to reach thousands through this “prophetic mission.”



                    I love reflecting on Mark Mallet’s essays and insights yet do not believe I should contribute to his expenditures. Contained within his blog he writes of spending over $80,000. toward a high quality Audio of the Chaplet of Divine Mercy and Rosary albumn.

                    For me, I would gladly pay a subscription fee to read his material, but feel uncomfortable providing $ to his prophet-ability.

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                    1. Yes, SeanSullivan, I think that is the point I was getting at, but you got to it much better than I did. Although Mark said Jesus told him he could reach people through music, I think the recording studio was a bit much. In addition, he now is asking for donations in order to travel and give talks. I am not sure he needs to do that to get this message out. He has a lot of readers. He says he is financially constrained, but he is pushing the envelope on spending. I give him a little money every month, and I am very sorry to hear about the severe troubles on his farm, but his actions do not seem to reflect his financial problems…..Also, when looking at his writings, he was somewhat critical of Sondra Abrahams. She says she sees angels and, also, hears Jesus’s voice. Once in a while there are signs of this. One of these signs is a bit of white feather floating around her and he saw this in her presence. He commented that it could have come from one of two sources. I thought that was rather small of him. I have met Sondra several times. She is dedicated to Christ in every way. She is humble. Never accepts any money. I am very impressed with her! …. As far as prophecy goes, we could say that Mark’s knowledge also could come from one of two places. So, though I respect Mark, I have been pondering some of this as of late.

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                  2. Yes, it was possibly a gift. I have thought of that. ….. As far as going through great trials, aren’t we all?

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                2. Wantobe In order to come up with the right answer, one has first to come up with the right question. Putting the wrong question in someone’s lap and then not finding a good answer is not a valid approach or method of criticism. We must be willing to appraise others fairly. Would we not want the same for ourselves? Are we not all searching for the truth in our search for guidance? Watch and pray, pray and watch. TRUST in the Lord.

                  Liked by 3 people

                  1. Just A Sojourner, I am known to be very fair and kind. People also comment that I am generous to the extreme. However, when I have a concern, I eventually raise. I am not sure what is the right question you want to ask. Maybe you could ask that question?

                    Liked by 1 person

                    1. Wantobe Not all are called to the same sort of active ministry. Charlie at times has been called to travel and to give talks and I’m sure he appreciates well the different affects and effects of the difference between the written and spoken word and he is prepared to go out again on the road when that time should come again. Mark Mallet has a ministry with elements of music and both written and spoken word. Far be it for me, or anyone else for that matter, to make cursory judgements as to what is most appropriate for anyone else to conduct the ministry they are called to. To some no doubt, a written ministry is most adequate and appropriate. I leave it up to them to listen to and to respond to their own guidance. I have enough to deal with my own personal challenges. Peace be with you.

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              2. I used to pray for Pope Francis’ intentions. Now I pray he be guided by the Holy Spirit as he leads the church. I will stay faithful to the church.

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            1. Even Mark Mallet admits we have had a lot of sinful popes. Though Francis has not invoked the doctrine of infallibility, and he has not officially changed the churches teachings, he surely looks like he wants to do exactly that with the way he raises up people who are soft in Church doctrine and strong on popular social doctrine of the current age. Popular social doctrine of the age is a world without national borders, redistribution of income, socialized medicine (where the government tells doctors what they can prescribe for a condition and who is too expensive to treat), softness on sexual transgressions, and so much more which has never been part of the teachings of Catholicism. In meantime, he suggests that Catholics talk to much much about the sin of abortion. … and the result is that we now have states and people accepting infanticide as a social good and as a woman’s right. Those politicians who support his social agenda are greeted with smiles and rosaries in papal audiences because they, of course, want all the other things he wants and share his political and social agenda that will likely lead to one world order. No, I do not think I am a perfect Catholic. Far from it. However, Francis is a product of leftist revolutionary and socialist theology. In my opinion, and I am sad to say it, he acts more like a politician than a pastor. He has solid faith in central control which always leads to loss of personal freedom and eventually totalitarianism…. Christ made it clear that His Kingdom was of this world. While he wanted us to take care of each other (“love thy brother as thyself), he did not want political revolution. He wanted us to repent of sin and experience a moral revolution within ourselves…..I find it especially upsetting that those politicians who clearly promote infanticide are not excommunicated from the Catholic Church, while at the same time claiming in public and the press that they are most definitely taking the moral high ground and following the teachings of Christ. The is clear and absolute sin and surely an insult to Our Lord and Savior. I do not understand why the Bishops and the Pope do not have the courage to take a stand against this most heinous and horrific sin of infanticide. If there was ever a need for excommunication as a way to address heinous sin, it is truly needed right now in the national and international stage. Francis is not shy about many other issues. Why are he and the bishops so weak on this? The commandments say, “thou shall not kill”. They do not command us to accept any particular political system or even a borderless society. Let Francis stand for absolute moral truths. Be clear and be strong, be vocal on ten commandments, as a pastor should.

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              1. I meant to say that Christ made it clear that His Kingdom was not of this world. I expect you all caught the typo. 🙂

                Liked by 2 people

    3. Why am I astounded?! Nothing that crowd does/did should surprise us. Please Lord, expose them all!!

      Great post, Charlie, as always. I’m thrilled to hear of your fans in many, possibly, unexpected places.

      Liked by 5 people

      1. Wantobe I have followed Mark Mallet for over ten years and know the history of him, his wife and eight children and his ministry. I too provide him support through a modest monthly stipend. No, I don’t necessarily agree with everything he does or says. He has never ask for my advice.
        There is so much that I could say but since I don’t even know where to begin, therefore I will not. Peace be with you.

        Liked by 1 person

        1. As far as Mark Mallett, or Charlie or ANY prophet/prophecy goes, scripture has the answer to how we must discern these things. It says in 1 Thessalonians 5:21 to “Test everything and keep what is good.” And through these things even St Paul admits he “lacks” but that he is fulfilled in Christ;
          “17 For Christ did not send me (Paul) to baptize, but to preach the gospel—not with wisdom and eloquence, lest the cross of Christ be emptied of its power.” (1 Corinth: 17).
          St Paul admits that God has enriched us with multiple witnesses for His Kingdom so all His spiritual gifts are made available to us: “5 For in him you have been enriched in every way—with all kinds of speech and with all knowledge— 6 God thus confirming our testimony about Christ among you. 7 Therefore you do not lack any spiritual gift as you eagerly wait for our Lord Jesus Christ to be revealed”.(1 Corinthians 5-7).
          The “kicker” is Paul tells us we still await for Jesus to be revealed fully. This doesn’t happen until the end. Still, *every spiritual gift necessary has been made available to us*. So you and me, Mark and Charlie, everyone of us…visionary or whatnot, hold a piece of the puzzle to share but must wait for the full story in the end. In the mean time, let us build each other up and learn from one another with the light we can share by our life, our understanding and our love of the things God has given us.
          “27 But God chose the foolish things of the world to shame the wise; God chose the weak things of the world to shame the strong. 28 God chose the lowly things of this world and the despised things—and the things that are not—to nullify the things that are, 29 so that no one may boast before him.”

          Liked by 1 person

          1. True that, Phillip. And we have the Church’s protection found in our obedience to her legitimate authority, for what we may believe to be authentic may be declared not so.

            Liked by 1 person

  3. Charlie, truly this generous apology puts paid to our disagreement, and – bonus for us all – you have expanded it into a wonderful conversation on this kind of problem. Thank you!

    Liked by 11 people

  4. I agree with Steve, hyperbole destroys credibility as soon as the one to whom the hyperbole is directed realizes it’s “fake news”. However, we often see things that defy even settled science. We Christians call these instances miracles–they defy logic and science. So you are both right gentlemen!

    Speaking of Christians and Catholics in Hollywood, I just heard a wonderful presentation by Neal McDonough this morning. (Minority report, project bluebook, suits, justified…) His story of faith in a faithless industry was inspiring.

    I hope Archbishop Gregory goes to Washington, I think he was a rockstar at the Dallas conference. It’s easy to pick apart specific things one would have done differently but for the time he was the perfect leader. And, Jesus was there every moment. The Blessed Sacrament was exposed the whole time. I had never been much of a fan of adoration before then, but I learned to love it while I was there – with the tutelage of a remarkable woman from the Diocese of San Antonio who taught me how to “Hang out with Jesus”.

    Finally, I am so happy with the reception the movie “Unplanned” is getting at the box office! A sign of hope, perhaps?

    Liked by 5 people

    1. Yes, 2 steps fwd with Unplanned success, however, looks like one step backward with:
      “The U.S. Supreme Court denied a request by the Thomas More Society to dismiss what the public interest firm says is a “discriminatory” lawsuit brought against undercover journalist David Daleiden by abortion giant Planned Parenthood.” Our Lady of Tepeyac pray for us.

      Timely, about a week ago a choir from St. John Cantius in Chicago, of young people, went to the Illinois state capitol building and sang Conventry Carol” about the Holy Innocents in the rotunda.

      Liked by 4 people

      1. Oh Maggie. That chorus. Those young people. Soul-piercing. Thank you for the links. Here’s a separate link, within the story at Fr. Z’s blog, for the The Little Innocents Project. Ever keeping David and his work in prayer.

        Liked by 3 people

      2. Don’t read too much into the Supremes rejection at this point, Maggie. The Supreme Court does not usually take up a case unless it is both important judicially AND has largely exhausted local litigation options. I did not think the Supremes would take this up just yet. There have been injustices aplenty, but it is not decided. Right now, David is involved in recorded depositions with abortion doctors and key officials of Planned Parenthood. Getting them on record under oath has been a key goal from the start. To be completely candid, things are going so well I personally prefer the momentum things have gotten not be disrupted just yet.

        Liked by 6 people

        1. Good to know, Charlie; appreciate the reliable and reassuring info. Their status in the news is a good reminder to reignite prayers and keep them in our donation rotation when possible, (link in the menu).

          Liked by 4 people

  5. unfortunately here in Atlanta, we do not have high regard for our Archbishop. He has allowed errant groups New Ways ministry and Faithful Families run amok and one church even had a gay couples group pot luck dinners every month. He is a SJW first and foremost……

    Liked by 3 people

    1. I know. That is why I said he is unlikely. If he were obviously orthodox, he would never be appointed. If he was well thought of by genuinely faithful Catholics, he would not be appointed. He will probably continue to try to please all in Washington – but when push comes to shove, I think there will be a surprise in him.

      Liked by 2 people

  6. With all due respect Charlie, I am having a hard time seeing or believing what you write of Archbishop Gregory. Being a Catholic in Atlanta, with young children to raise, I have not seen the bishop you are talking about. All I have seen is a political, social justice advocate, that has other allies do the groundwork in the diocese to keep his appearance fairly innocuous. He is extremely effective at this. He has allowed destructive teaching in our Catholic Schools and to parish youth. The focus in our diocese is always on social justice issues, rarely magisterial truths that help keep our children in the church and on the path to Heaven. In fact, it seems that the priests who try to uphold and teach these truths are creatively blocked. He has allowed Father Martin to speak at two parishes in the diocese. I sat in on one of Martin’s talks. It was a battering of half-truths (as a holy priest told me are in essence, lies) to a group who so desperately needs the complete, loving truth that can only be found in the Catholic Church. Martin also stood at the Shrine of the Immaculate Conception and called faithful Catholics, who uphold church teaching on sexuality, haters. Laity were very upset at this personal invite of Gregory to Martin. Archbishop Gregory never met with them. In fact, many correspondences to the Archbishop are ignored on a regular basis. The Shrine, under Archbishop Gregory, is certainly worth investigating too. The actions allowed at the shrine are not worthy of our Lady.

    If my eyes and ears have deceived me in all that my family and many others in my diocese have witnessed with Archbishop Gregory, I will certainly beg forgiveness and offer an apology. In the meantime, I will continue to pray for the restoration of our diocese and Mary’s protection of our families.

    Liked by 5 people

    1. D, I am not disagreeing with you at all. If I had argued that Archbishop Gregory is an icon of orthodoxy, you would be right to call me an idiot. I say he seems a heterodox Bishop who does things that are offensive to the faithful – but I think there is more there. Again, I say, that under this pontificate only those who offend the faithful need apply for advancement. I argue that Archbishop Gregory may ultimately not be what Pope Francis thinks he is – and I say it from direct experience. I honestly do not understand why some here are arguing with me that he has been a heterodox Bishop who has supported offensive things – when that is also what I say…and said in this piece. You will have nothing to apologize for. I do not argue that he has been an icon of orthodoxy…quite the opposite. I say he is going to be a SURPRISE at a critical moment. The very definition of a surprise is someone who acts differently than you expected based on his past history.

      William Seward, the front-runner for the nomination, surprised all by, within a year or two, becoming Abraham Lincoln’s closest confidant in the cabinet. He was a surprise.

      Benedict Arnold, an effective military leader, surprised all by becoming a traitor to America.

      Donald Trump has surprised many – including me – in the conservative movement and the Christian community by being one of our most effective advocates ever.

      If you had argued about any of these men, before they surprised everyone, that they were extremely unlikely to do what they did because of their past history, you would have been right. I did not argue that Archbishop Gregory is a likely champion of orthodoxy, but that he will be a surprise precisely because of his past history.

      Liked by 7 people

      1. I have not seen Unplanned yet, but someone commented the other day along similar lines that God allowed Abby Johnson to go to work at Planned Parenthood and then “surprise”, look at all the good that has come of it since.

        I was also reading today about the three people Jesus raised from the dead being an image of sinners being restored to life. The daughter of Jarius had been dead only hours. The son of the Widow was being carried off to the grave. Lazarus had been in the grave for three days. Even Lazarus was raised from the dead. Both of these things to reflect on, along with Charlie’s comment about this Bishop, are a reminder to me that we can have hope that even those long dead can be brought back to life by Our Lord.

        Liked by 6 people

  7. As a Catholic in Atlanta I was very discouraged to see his continual support of a group called Fortunate Families. He invited them numerous times to speak at events and said Masses for them. They are openly gay. The Courage chapter in Atlanta was never asked to speak and he never said a Mass for them. He even put links to Fortunate Families on the Christ The King website and encouraged all the parishes in the diocese to do so as well.

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  8. “He (Bishop Wilton Gregory) was overly concerned about image and worried way too much about being liked, but the Lord showed me that he had great depths – and God would use him one day as a hero of the faith in a time of crisis. Now no one needs accept this, but it is the coin I have followed all my life, so I was content.”

    To this point Charlie made from personal experiences with Archbishop Gregory as well as the inner light given to Charlie about the potential good God could do in the Archbishop, here’s an excellent analysis of the Archbishop’s, now officially confirmed, appointment to the Archdiocese of DC.

    Said it before and I’ll say it again: BOATLOADS of prayer for Archbishop Gregory are in order so he can do what God wants him to do and be who God wants him to be at this critical juncture. May this be the start of something which sparks repentance, renewal and reform which ripples throughout the entire American episcopacy.

    Our Lady, the Immaculate Conception, Patroness of the United States, wrap your Mantle around Archbishop Wilton Gregory so that he fully cooperates to bring about what God wills to do through, with and in him.

    Liked by 6 people

      1. I understand, San San. But it really is a case of more than “everyone can change.” I would not have much hope for the appointment, myself, were it not for the perspective points which Charlie has made. There has to be someone who seems to be of the stripe of appointments made in recent years or the potential candidate would be passed over in a heartbeat. Now, we have information concerning the positive strengths of Archbishop Gregory and we now know that there is hope for change. This says to me: hang on to that hope, but don’t wait for magic; pray and do penance for the change to happen. May it be!

        Liked by 5 people

  9. NESW & MILINET: Articles for Christians–4 April
    Catholicism in a Time of Dissolution

    What’s Next for Conservatives?

    Catholic School’s Groundbreaking Lawsuit Could Strike Down LGBT Laws Across the Nation

    Prepare Your Children NOW for Life in Post-Christian America

    67 Nonprofit Leaders Urge Media to Drop ‘Anti-Christian and Morally Bankrupt’ SPLC

    In Memorium: Letter Writing




    Pro-Life Health Care Network Gets a Boost from Federal HHS Grant

    ‘Unplanned’ and ‘Roe v. Wade’ Bring the Pro-Life Movement to the Movies

    Rep. Jayapal: Protect Transgender Freedom by Regulating All Americans

    In Wisconsin, a Vote against Anti-Christian Bigotry

    Pete Buttigieg: A Woman Cannot be Free Unless She Can Kill Her Baby in a Late Term Abortion — And Men Need to Stay Out of It

    Watch this guy boldly speak the truth about abortion in front of state lawmakers

    Georgia Gov Will Sign Abortion Ban Despite Alyssa Milano Protest: “Not Worried What Hollywood Thinks of Me”

    First-Ever Virginia March for Life Takes Place In Response To Democrats’ Late-Term Abortion Extremism

    Falsehoods and Fear

    Metastasizing Media Mendacity

    MSNBC Panel Speculates Vague NYT Story Shows Barr Pushed ‘False Information’ on Mueller Report


    The Seven Most Undercovered Obama Scandals

    NY Times Can’t Figure Out Why Va. Race and Assault Scandals Faded: It Starts With (D)

    Mueller the Boy Scout

    Twitter, Facebook still haven’t suspended Louis Farrakhan even after he said, ‘Jesus died because he was…too soon to bring about the end of the civilization of the Jews’

    Millions Of Facebook Records Found On Amazon Cloud Servers

    A Rising Tide of ‘Islamophobia,’ or Fake News?

    You’ll be shocked how far down the communist checklist we are

    University of Kansas Offering Course on ‘Angry White Males’ This Fall

    Student Stands Against Liberal Mob Demanding Thomas Jefferson Statue be Removed

    The Admission Scam Is Another Reason To Destroy Academia As We Know It

    Russian Collusion Hysteria Part LXXVI: Some Of Mueller’s Investigators Not Happy With AG Barr

    DEEP STATE LEAK: Mueller’s Team Says Trump Report More Damaging Than Bill Barr Reveals

    GOP Senator Puts Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey on Notice: Time for a ‘Third-Party Audit’ of De-Platforming Policies


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    1. regarding “Deep state Leak” above (2nd to the last)
      here’s what Rush Limbaugh says about it
      “But these sources are not members of Mueller’s team. These are associates of members of Mueller’s team. In other words, it’s not Mueller, and it’s not Weissmann, and it’s not Strzok Smirk or any of the other actual members of Mueller’s team. These are like friends of Comey, you know, from Bible study that are out leaking. It’s so utterly predictable.

      But once again we’re up against what we’re always up against, and that is people who only read the New York Times or watch CNN, Washington Post, they have a totally skewed version of what’s going on. They now believe that the Mueller report has things in it that Barr is being dishonest about and has lied about. And it isn’t true. It isn’t true. We’ll deal with this in great detail in a moment.”

      Liked by 2 people

  10. PS:
    Just how far, what extreme measures and which domestic/foreign “Agents” will The Usual Suspects be willing to contemplate in order to destroy Trump, his Deplorables and ANYONE else who dares object to their, daily ever more, radical Agendas? …. Eh?!!? …. keep your powder dry!!!

    Team Mueller and the Predictable “Leak Campaign” – But The Much Bigger Issue is the 40 FBI Agents…

    Rudy Giuliani Discusses Democrat Desperate Effort to Weaponize Mueller Report…

    Jim Jordan and Devin Nunes Discuss Politicization of Mueller Report…


    Liked by 5 people

  11. Sadly ;-(, I’d bet that Voris is essentially correct about the contents of the below.
    I do Hate the idea of our, still!!, none-too-pure Dept. of Just-Us involving Our Church in a RICO Investigation but So Be It as it has become painfully obvious that Our Church “Leadership” will only produce Spin, Chaff, BS & Jamming ;-(

    (NOT) MAKING AMERICA GREAT AGAIN – Too many US bishops are socialists at heart.


    Liked by 6 people

  12. Thanks so much Charlie for the reply. I do not know much about William Seward, but I think there were a few who were not surprised by Benedict Arnold. There were definitely some who were not surprised by Trump.

    Despite his actions, many in Atlanta prayed for Archbishop Gregory. I am sure that these prayers will continue for D.C. That all will be revealed for the restoration of Christ’s church. When I pray for the specific intention of our Archdiocese leadership and the restoration of our diocese, Bella Dodd and her work recruiting communist priests and ultimate repentance of this work always comes to mind. Social justice is a battering ram for communism. We can only pray that those who continue this work of attempted destruction of church and state under the deception that communism is a superior philosophy, will see the light, like Bella Dodd. So many souls have been lost along the way.

    Liked by 3 people

  13. I’m sorry, but I can not believe that Science is ever Settled since it has been, is, and will be created by a Living God who can change it any time He wants! If you ever watch all of the “dimensions” of all the Physics shows on TV, (pun intended) the best we can ever do is understand to a degree what God has created up to this point. Maybe when we get 100 percent “Divinized” (who knows when that will happen), and if we are more involved in the creation of other multiverse universes we will understand Science better 🙂 but I think God and Creation will always be a Mystery, thanks be to God!

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Bob, I see both/and at work. Just one wee example: there are natural laws (part of science) which God gave us and some are, definitely, settled. A simple example: today, a vehicle needs gas to function and if a person decides to put sand in the gas line, scientifically, it ain’t gonna work and, worse, the engine might well be destroyed. This doesn’t preclude the wonders of science yet to be discovered, as you mention above. I’m sure the scientists – by training and trade – in our community can give much more elegant examples than I.

      Liked by 1 person

    1. Ah, identifying him as an unorthodox, lgbt-promoting Bishop to Pope Francis will only assure the Pope that he has made the choice he wants. I appreciate this petition: I feared that if any in high authority read my piece, it might give them pause about Archbishop Gregory. This petition will surely convince them they have got the man to do the damage they want. And so it plays out. Time will tell who has called it truest.

      Liked by 4 people

      1. Charlie,

        You are right – he may turn out to be something better when the fire comes to temper his iron. Now, I will not deny that I looked askance at his appointment as I am all too well aware that he presided over the kangeroo court that tried Father Jim Haley, a canonical farce that made a joke of justice and wrecked a good and holy priest. This trial alone would be enough to give certain parties the blessing of support of Bishop Gregory.

        However, as Beck’s has stated, Bishop Gregory needs our prayers, and he needs them now more than ever. I also think he needs a St. Michael stone – now I have given one to Bishop Richard Malone of Buffalo and Paul Chomnycky of Stamford because they are my bishops, and I have one lined up for my pal Bishop Nicholas Samra of Newton. But, I do not know Bishop Gregory and I am afraid if a stone was sent by some isolated person, like me, it would be placed aside and not delivered. Someone who knows him should give him one of these stones. Every priest I have given them too has found them invaluable.

        And now, just a reminder to us all – Love will keep us together – A good cheesy song from Captain and Tennile from 1975!

        Liked by 5 people

          1. Sheralyn80,

            It bears worth repeating what Deacon Guadelupe Rodriguez of the Diocese of Austin Texas wrote about these stones:

            “In 490 AD, through a series of miraculous events, St. Michael the Archangel indicated that he had chosen a cave in Gargano, Italy, to be a shrine in his honor. . . .

            While most Catholic churches are consecrated and made holy by the local bishop using sacred chrism oil and blessing prayers, the cave needed no such consecration for as St Michael told the bishop,
            “It is not necessary that you dedicate this church that I myself have consecrated with my presence.” . . .

            Everyone who carried a relic stone from the cave on their person with faith was miraculously delivered from the plague. . . .

            Over the centuries exorcists have used the St. Michael relic stones from the cave to liberate the demonically possessed and those who need deliverance because they are obsessed (mental) or oppressed (bodily exterior). St. Padre Pio would often send persons needing deliverance to the cave of St. Michael, and they would be liberated.”

            We are entering times of increased and open demonic activity as well as the beginnings of persecution. The stone will be of great protection to you personally, as well as a way for him to help others, as well as battles with purity.

            Liked by 1 person

          1. Mick, I really liked that song when it came out = my older sister got the record, so I enjoyed it. I had not listened to it in 30 + years when it popped into my head, so I had to listen to it again.

            I also hope to send you the promises seeds this week. Got my mower up and going and my tiller I next.

            Liked by 1 person

            1. Just now saw this comment, James. Thanks in advance; and you’ve really got your tiller up and running already? I’m just now getting around to starting my tomato and pepper seeds!

              Liked by 1 person

  14. Charlie,
    I am beginning to suspect we are in THE apocalyptic times of Revelation, THE END..The Prophecy of the Third Secret of Fatima…….”

    Vatican City, Apr 3, 2019 / 06:33 am (CNA).- Reflecting upon his recent apostolic journey to Morocco,
    Pope Francis said Wednesday that God desires a greater sense of fraternity among Catholics and Muslims as “brother children of Abraham.”

    Pope Francis walked back an earlier statement Wednesday on God “willing” a plurality of religions, saying that in reality God only permits the existence of many religions.
    In a joint statement with the Grand Imam of Al-Azhar Ahmad Al-Tayyeb, Pope Francis said in February that the plurality and diversity of religions “are willed by God in His wisdom,” just as God wills a plurality of colors, sexes, races, and languages.

    This Abu Dhabi declaration elicited a wave of criticism from Catholic theologians,…….Father Thomas Weinandy, for instance, the former head of the U.S. bishops’ doctrinal office, said he found the statement disturbing for its apparent reduction of Jesus Christ to just another guru or religious leader.
    “What I find very sad and scandalously troubling” Father Weinandy told Lifesite News, “is that, in the midst of it all, Jesus is being insulted. He is reduced to the level of Buddha or Mohammed when in fact he is the Father’s beloved Messianic Son, the one in whom the Father is well pleased.”The only religions that God positively willed are Judaism and Christianity for he himself founded these religions through his own positive divine actions and revelation,” Weinandy said. (more on link)

    Liked by 2 people

    1. My husband is reading “The Political Pope” right now…a book researched and written about our current Pope by George Neumayr. The highlights he has shared with me are downright scary.

      Liked by 2 people

      1. Thanks for mentioning the book. I am not sure I can read it. I can see what is happening and I feel ill when I contemplate it. However, I will put it on my reading list for the time when I think I can stomach some more bad news. 🙂

        Liked by 2 people

        1. I understand StJudithwanttobe….that’s why I’m not reading it myself…just hearing occasional bits of it from my husband. He has a much stronger stomach than I do. If all the author’s research is remotely true….it’s pretty scary.

          Liked by 2 people

    2. To say that all religions are equal is the heart of free masonry. This is evil at its core. It creates confusion as it attempts to minimize Christianity and the redemption of Christ.

      Liked by 3 people

      1. All people are equal in potential and dignity before God but all religions, some with contradictory tenets, teachings and beliefs cannot be equally true. God can not be contradictory.

        Liked by 4 people

        1. Huh? Other religions may have elements of truth, but to say all religions are equal is simply false and is a main underlying tenant of free masonry. This is why the church so rejects it. There is only one religion that embodies the full truth and that is the Catholic faith. Free masonry is a tool of the evil one to create confusion which has the effect to cause folks to reject all religions. This is the danger of it. Jesus says “I am the way, the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father but through me.”

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          1. Doug, just a sojourner knows what you’re saying about the fullness of Truth. I do believe it’s simply a bing and I’ll be happy to edit it when he gives the green light to do so.

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          2. Doug. Beckita is right. Auto-correct strikes again. It seems to edit after I proof-read and post. Sneaky little devil.

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          3. I’d call that part of the ‘tool’ the claw, for prying. He wields the head directly on believers so that weakened and dazed from the blows, they live their faith less and hypocrisy more. Wouldn’t it be great if the whole mass of Catholics truly embodied the Catholic Faith?

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    1. And, thought Bishop Gracida and I are friends, he knows that this is an area where we disagree. Perhaps, in the end he will be proved right, but I remain dubious about trying to engage in rhetorical gamesmanship to try to deny the plain meaning of a plain statement, that was accepted by all at the time. It smacks of “I had my fingers crossed behind my back” childishness.

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      1. There is some discussion elsewhere on the internet about whether the German bishops and theologians (including Ratzinger) had developed a deformed theology of the office vs. ministry of the papacy based on their written works on the subject over the last 40 years. The issues surrounding Pope Benedict’s resignation being raised go to this issue, based on the Latin wording of the official resignation. Quite frankly, it is all above my pay grade and I just pray for the “Holy Father.”

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        1. Eric, thank you for bringing up the matter of the 50-year-old Modernist strategy discussed at length by Kasper, Rahner, Ratzinger, and others. As you may know, the dissertation of Fr. J. Michael Miller from 1979 brings much of these theologians’ discussions to light. The Modernist goal to fundamentally transform the monarchical, divinely instituted Papacy by using the rhetorical gamesmanship of conflating the Papal Office (munus or papatus) with the Petrine Ministry (ministerium) is a key piece of the plan to “demythologize” the singular position of the Successor of Peter.

          To achieve this “fraternal” goal requires progressing in such a way that a synodal-type of a more ecumenically palatable “board of directors” would become the novus ordo of the Papal Office whereby the jobs of that office would potentially be administered by not just a bi-furcated headship but a trinitarian headship: one Roman Catholic, one Orthodox, and one Protestant (this seems to be one of Cdl Walter Kasper’s thought experiments). You can find some of the dissertation, The Divine Right of the Papacy in Recent Ecumenical Theology, here:

          As Charlie allowed, it may be that Bishop Gracida (as well as others including Professor Radaelli and Msgr. Bux) will be proved correct in calling attention to and requesting an examination of the juridical validity of the Feb 11, 2013 announcement particularly in light of Canon 332.2. If so it would seem that God has used BXVI’s decision (childish or not, mistaken or not) to safeguard the infallibility of the Papal Office as well as both the indefectibility of Holy Mother the Church and the immutability of Her doctrine.

          Besides uncovering the rot that, as Desmond and others have pointed out, has been festering for over one hundred years, perhaps yet another blessing of BXVI’s difficult decision is the uncovering of the Modernists’ strategic plan to fundamentally transform the monarchical, divinely instituted Papacy. I know that except for this singular action of BXVI, I myself would never have investigated the matter and would be left unaware and thus unable to defend Holy Mother against yet another vanguard of the unrelenting onslaught of Freemasonic Modernism.

          Liked by 1 person

      2. Charlie, I appreciate your reply as well as your allowance that a juridical examination of the Latin rhetoric may prove BXVI’s resignation invalid. As for your assertion that it was “accepted by all at the time”, as noted in the article at Bishop Gracida’s blog, Professor Enrico Radaelli published his Supplica to His Holiness Pope Benedict XVI on February 18, 2013–seven days after the announcement. In this document, the professor urged the Pope to take back his renunciation. I don’t know if you read the article at Bishop Gracida’s blog but it contains a summary of Professor Radaelli’s article which can also be found here:

        The following article explains the evidence of the potential invalidity according to the law itself. I hope that you would review it sometime.

        Should Bishop Gracida and others prove correct in this matter, I do not see how admitting that Benedict is Pope gives anyone a “Get Out of Jail Free” card. It does potentially, however, put an end to the confusion of the “reign” of former Cdl Bergoglio. For IF Pope Benedict resigns in accord with the law before he dies, that demonstrates that the March 2013 conclave was unnecessary and thus no one was elected. There is no need to bring heresy, substantial error, coercion, motivation, Universal and Peaceful Acceptance, etc… to the table. It would be necessary to call a new conclave. If Pope Benedict doesn’t resign according to the law, he is still Pope; the rot has been revealed and people the world over get to choose between rot and Truth.

        Perhaps the rules governing Cardinal Electors that Bishop Gracida has proposed would be enlisted for the new conclave. Anyway that I look at it, it will be a mess–there will be no “Get Out of Jail Free” card. People the world over will still have to choose. It may be that the black-and-white evidence on which to base our choice will just be clearer.


        1. We will not get through this until we have paid the last farthing for our sustained disobedience over a long period of time. While we discuss many subjects, the FOCUS here is what we must do to become holy again, to herald the coming of the Triumph of Our Lady’s Immaculate Heart. That necessarily involves noting areas where we have failed. But the focus is never going to become finding panaceas that impute all the blame to others while absolving us of our role in the degradation of society and culture. So yes, I think a lot of frustrated people are coming up with a whole lot of “get out of jail free” cards that absolve them of any serious effort to examine their own faults in all this. And that is NOT where we are going to go here. If this theory proved true and Pope Francis were removed, it would NOT change the influence of a gay mafia in the highest places; it would NOT change that many of the faithful have abandoned articles of faith, such as against abortion and contraception and the proper definition of the family; it would NOT change the refusal of many clerics and successors of the apostles to uphold and defend the faith sent out by Christ and His Apostles. I am much more ambitious than to seek the ouster of a single individual. I want the renewal of a whole culture and that is what I work towards. Until we renew ourselves and spread the joy of the faith to those around us, faithless clerics will be like shark’s teeth: every time one is knocked out another will pop up to take its place. I am determined that we banish the shark – and those sharklike qualities that each of us have. We will not get past this until we have paid the last farthing – and that includes turning those eyes searching for evil without to remove the planks from our own eyes.

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          1. Let me be very clear, Charlie, I agree with you wholeheartedly on every single point that you make in this reply. Would you clarify one point? Surely you don’t mean that in focusing on and removing our own planks we should not address objective realities including the possible invalidity of Benedict’s renouncement?

            In regards to the choice that I spoke of–Benedict or Bergoglio (and the mess that this choice necessarily creates)–how do you envision the big-picture-end-game in regards to St. Ambrose’s statement, “Where Peter is, there is the Church”?

            Perhaps the recognition and then declaration from the laity that Benedict is Pope will usher in the metanoia via the chastisement of which others have recently mentioned. And then Our Lady’s Immaculate Heart will be able to triumph in the fertile ground of holy souls.


            1. I don’t know how much you agree, for if one reads my comment, I say specifically that we must discuss objective realities and problems candidly. You focus to the point of obsession on this issue as if it will resolve things. It will not. As to how I see the big picture/end game…I do not see it as my duty to determine how God is going to play things out. Rather, I think it my duty to take each step with faith and fidelity knowing that God knows what he is doing.

              I know that if we had had a notably orthodox Pope, the predators would still be in hiding. Pope Francis has convinced them it is okay to come out. I don’t think that was his intention, but that is the result. God rarely, if ever, works in the straight-line narrative so many want to impose on him. Much of the big-picture-end-game will be a surprise to me…and it certainly will be to you. That is why I so emphasize simple faith and fidelity, without neglecting to discuss real problems.

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          2. Charlie, congratulations on seeing this as a ‘quick fix’ attempt – at a time in which we are WAAAAAY beyond quick fixes.

            Some discussion of Benedict XVI somewhere in the thread brought the following to mind.:

            Back in the 1960’s – by the end of Vat. Council II in 1964, a comparatively young and callow Fr. and theological Dr., Joseph Ratzinger, was already rapidly distancing himself from Karl Rahner, et al. Why? Because by the end of Vatican Council II, Ratzinger had discovered that he and his old professor and mentor [Rahner] “lived on two different theological planets.” [In academe – such a statement is tantamount to declaring that two men share almost nothing as far as theological basics.]

            By the end of 1969, with its student riots at Tubingen, Prof & Dr. Ratzinger began a reassessment of things taught to him by his old mentor, Rahner. He came to the conclusion that the chaos being witnessed in many German ‘Catholic’ Universities could be directly traced back to the twisted subjectivism of Rahner (despite the fact that Rahner tried to present himself to the world as a ‘Thomist)’. [If Rahner was ever a real Thomist, then Desmond Birch is a blueberry muffin.]

            By the early 1980’s Ratzinger had ensconced himself in the teachings of St. Augustine, i.e., had become a theological Augustinian [as was Thomas Aquinas. Anyone who disagrees with that assessment of Thomas has most probably never objectively studied – just for example – Thomas’ Quaestio’s in the Summa. Therein, Thomas initially anchors most of the answers to those Quaestios in texts from Augustine.]

            Anyone who actually knows their theology in general, and really knows the contemporary theology of Ratzinger/Benedict XVI – either knows or should know that to think or indicate that Benedict XVI holds any major theological brief with Rahner – certainly doesn’t even know the Ratzinger who came to Rome in 1983 to become head of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith under Pope John Paul II. Such can most definitely be repeated the same man later, in his role as Pope Benedict XVI.

            Meanwhile, back at the ranch, removal of one man is hardly a goal which will address the current chaos in the Curia – or the Vatican in general – as you so eloquently pointed out, Charlie. In my opinion it is ‘root and branch’ time. When the herd is being stampeded toward a cliff, one doesn’t stop to get rid of one rustler – not even a leader of the rustlers. You have to get ahead of the herd and turn it. No man can do that on his own today – not even a great Saint. [Even if you actually got a leader of the rustlers in hand,] It is going to take some Divine Intervention, and in the meantime, we must all keep our eye on the ball. TNRS. In my case, that means getting my own house much more in order.

            I’m 78 & I have a painful hip, I must use auxiliary oxygen for heavy work/exercise, & metastasized cancer. But those are trifles. I have not yet come to the point that I habitually love my enemies. Jesus gives me the COMMAND, not a wish, to so forgive, pray for, and love my enemies – no matter how vilely they might speak to or of me,or treat me in general. In short,

            In short, I have – from a Christian point of view – some serious character flaws. If ever there was a time for my NRS to seriously work on turning my life 100% over to Christ [which is a prerequisite to being able to habitually love my enemies] this is it.

            If I am not even that close to Christ, I’m really not in a position assess the world around me in any depth – at least as far as in depth solutions to the world’s spiritual or ecclesial milieu. What is my work which Christ calls me to at this point in salvation history? It is to do my best to live every day as if it were my last, to hopefully say yes to every call and/or inspiration of the Holy Spirit in how to live with or next to my neighbor – and to be a light unto the Gentiles.

            Liked by 6 people

            1. Thank you for the history on the development of the theological thinking of Pope Emeritus Benedict, Desmond.

              Love your closing three paragraphs. Truth upon which we all can reflect. No stones zinging your way from Montana on the examen inherent in your words. Just prayer for greater zeal in evangelizing and the fiery desire to do better.

              Liked by 3 people

                1. In my experience in years of door to door evangelization, the degree to which the evangelist is in union with God – and has CONCRETE events or things they can proclaim which Christ has done for them – is directly related to their success in evangelization. Only CONCRETE things or events capture their attention enough to get them to listen to you further.

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                  1. Love this, Desmond. Straight from real experience and it tickles me with delight to envision you with the length, heighth, depth and breadth of your knowledge and expertise, walking with a fellow disciple to evangelize door to door. What a glorious dimension of humility in practice!

                    Liked by 2 people

                    1. Beckita, when I walk with my brother – often their personal favors or gifts from God greatly outshine me own. When that happens, I try to let them do most of the witnessing. Why? Because I can learn as much from them at that level as the people at the doors we knock upon. There is always a ‘faster gun’ in Dodge City. 🙂

                      Liked by 3 people

                    2. Love this SO much, Desmond. And so we are – if we but remain open and discern the apropos response to the opportunity – lifelong learners, teachers and companions on the Road to Emmaus, witnessing to Christ Who works through, with and in us in the wild west of our times.

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                  2. “Concrete.” Exactly. I love a good second, third, fourth hand account that’s edifying. Love it if someone shares something from the life of a Saint. But what better… what more compelling on a number of levels than getting it from the horse’s mouth? In everyday encounters, what can we share that comes more naturally and seems more authoritative than that? Does it come off as self-absorbed? Ah, well, we really have no control over how a person reacts, but we can always refine our delivery with a little bit of practice, and a whole lot of trust.

                    On an early morning trek with some kids, I really had to marvel at the differences sometimes between adult and kid trekking parties. Kids never seem to fret about the details of the excursion because I think they’re often better at actually being attentive and immersed in the moment. That, and they get excited about some cool destination you’ve painted a curious picture of. Ah, adults. Where are we going? […followed by them making small talk.] How far? […next comes the shop talk] Are their snakes? […yet more shop talk, because someone at work reminds them of a snake.] Do you know where we’re going? […worried stares.] Me: Heron Rest. Not as far as you think, but probably farther than you think you can go. This is the desert, not Disneyland. [Calm grin, followed by pointing at a cool critter sitting in a tree a mere 50 yards away.]

                    If I sometimes answered the adults honestly about whether or not I know where I’m going, I’d have to say, “Nope. We’re simply exploring today.” Fortunately, kids just assume they’re exploring.

                    Thematically, it was all about “be heralds of the King” today. No sweat, because God has provided endless metaphors in the Spring Desert. Already the lush green and first tiny wildflowers from the abundant rains have already faded to dusty golds, giving way to the heartier blooms that can flourish in the increasing heat. Some of the most impressive blooms will actually come at the pinnacle of the summer heat. Maybe the best thing about it all, was that I hardly had to say a thing… just point something out every once in while, and answer a pointed question or two. And with that, they all felt a little bit heroic. Just like those tiny, fragile blooms that have already faded. Gone, but what an honor to be among the first heralds of Spring.

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            2. Charlie, I thank you for your patience. I hope that you might grant me this chance to try to explain myself. It seems to me that I have never in all my comments EVER implied that examining the juridical validity of Pope Benedict’s renouncement would be a “quick fix” or a Get-Out-of-Jail panacea. It seems to me that I have been impugned with an idea that I neither think nor have written. Perhaps others think that verifying Benedict as the Pope is a “quick fix”; I do not.

              Rather, I have acknowledged in my own previous comments on this and other ASOH articles the long-standing, deep-reaching, tentacle-engulfing issue of man-centered, Freemasonic, Modernist infiltration into every nook and cranny of the Establishment Church, culture, and institutions of the West and the world. There is no easy fix for this Great Apostasy. I have read your comments and it seems from your replies to me that you have found in the “penumbra” of my comments an intention that does not exist either in my heart or mind or in what I have written.

              I am at a loss how to make clear to you that as I see it the point of the choice–Benedict or Francis–is not about the removal of one man, but about the big-picture, end-game, fundamental choice between Catholicism and Modernism, blessing or curse, life or death, joy or dread. Why? Because where Peter is, there is the Church.

              Even more profoundly and why the proposed examination of juridical validity leads to no easy-peasy, “tah-dah” resolution is that the choice for each individual is to acknowledge God in making that choice and thus freely embrace all that is entailed by making that choice; taking the next right step based on that choice; and finally being a sign of hope through the actions necessitated by that choice. This is what you have been teaching us and what will put an end to those treacherous, shark-tooth-like clerics.

              To be clear, this is where I see the blessing of an “every-last-farthing-must-be-paid” chastisement because it leads to the necessary sea-change metanoia and allows for the fertile ground awaited by Our Lord and Our Lady so that her Immaculate Heart will triumph in souls and in the world. Clearly this process that I have just described entails no quick or easy fix.

              How exactly and when exactly God will pull this rabbit out of the hat, I have no idea and I have never said that I do. Might the juridical validity of the munus/ministerium rhetoric play a part? I don’t know, but in justice and in light of objective reality all I’m saying is that it should be examined. As always, God is in control of the results of that examination as well as when or if it will even happen.

              For myself, I do my best to hold on to Our Lady’s hand and take one step at a time hoping it will be the next right step.


              1. Oftentimes, people evade their full responsibility in a crisis by focusing on a single point and exaggerating it out of all proportion to what it is in itself. So a couple of questions to you on the larger issues:

                1) What specific and doable steps do you think must be taken in order to effect real reform OTHER THAN ousting the current Pope?

                2) In your extensive studies on these issues, how do you deal with other Popes who acted objectively contrary to Scripture and the Magisterium? Perhaps Pope Liberius, who helped advance and inflame the Aryan heresy, before ultimately grudgingly repenting of it? Or Pope Benedict IX, who sold the Papacy to an ambitious climber? What about Pope John XII who murdered some people and was ultimately killed by a jealous husband who caught that Pope in bed with his wife? The Medici and Borgia Popes? Or maybe Pope Boniface VIII, who was savagely lampooned in Dante’s “Divine Comedy”? Were all these Popes also invalid, or do you reserve that for Pope Francis? And if they were valid, how would you have dealt with the real problems in the Church during their papacies?

                3) How does the culture play out in this? I think that the problems Pope Francis has brought to the fore by his strange acts reflect a lengthy period of growing problems in the world and the Church – that Pope Francis is a prominent symptom of what ails us, not the source thereof. Do you have any specific proposals on how to treat the disease rather than just a symptom? And if you reject my diagnosis bluntly, please say so and make a real prescription. Ousting the Pope without grappling with the underlying problems is like telling a cancer patient to take two aspirins and call back in the morning. The aspirins may be appropriate, but in the absence of a fuller diagnosis, it is an absurdity.

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            3. Desmond, perhaps you are not familiar with the footnotes and bibliography of Abp. J. Michael Miller’s 1979 dissertation, The Divine Right of the Papacy in Recent Ecumenical Theology. They show that the sources for his research were articles and books whose authors included Ratzinger, Rahner, Kasper, Burns, Scheffczyk, de Vries, and many others with whom you are likely familiar. Depending on the author, these various documents were written in the 50’s, 60’s, and through the 70’s.

              As you have noted it was during some of this same time period that Prof & Dr Ratzinger was reassessing and distancing himself from his previous mentor, Rahner. Yet, even with his reassessment and distancing, as a scholar he still contributed to and even edited publications to which now Cdl Walter Kasper contributed. In fact, the title of one of Miller’s sources which is a collection published in 1978 and edited by Ratzinger is Service to Unity. On the Nature and Mission of the Petrine Ministry.

              I only note this information as facts that can be verified and not to imply any collusion or Modernist conspiracy on any one of the authors’ parts. Correct me if I am wrong, but do not scholars sometimes collaborate on projects even when they “[live] on two different theological planets”? Being neither a scholar nor theologian, I have no idea on this point.

              I hope that you will read my comment to Charlie regarding my explanation of your valid point that “we are WAAAAAY beyond quick fixes” and my understanding of the potential that an examination of the juridical validity of Pope Benedict’s renunciation might play in this time of world-wide apostasy. Hint: It in no way implies or portends a quick fix.


              1. Well, I will say, I am MUCH more slow to correct people who have spent almost 60 years specializing in the subjects I dabble in than you are, Islam. I am sure that Desmond is gratified to see that, from your vast stores of study and insight, you concede that at least one of his points is valid. Perhaps if he lives to study and write full-time on theology for another 60 years he can catch up to you.

                Yeah, more than a little snark here. But Islam, you are illustrating what I keep trying to identify as a key problem going forward. Working from a few facts, you leap to large conclusions – when the way to wisdom is to go from the study of many facts, one should make small conclusions. Instead, you have an idee fixe that you are focused on and will NOT hear even one with a global reputation of accomplishment in the fields you opine about. Can a genuine amateur be right where a genuine professional is wrong? (I do not include all the faux professionals who have showy credentials but little learning). It happens sometimes – but that type of amateur seeks questions…he asks questions that actually change the dynamic, rather than just pounding a single idee fixe that he thinks resolves all things. You said earlier that you do not think it resolves all things, yet this is the only subject you pound on. You certainly see it as the critical issue. I rarely see you speak of how we can do the homely job of living our faith better individually and applying it to the myriad of practical situations we must deal with every day – just oust the sitting Pope and we will be on the road to recovery.

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                1. Thank you, Charlie, for giving me room to explain to you and others here at ASOH. I am grateful for your correction once again of what you perceive as my position and I will ruminate over your instructions. However, in all fairness, the community of next-right steppers here at ASOH as well as in other com-boxes and my “non-cyberspace” life know that BiP is not the only subject I address–er, pound.

                  You have to admit that I told Desmond that I am no scholar and no theologian when I did ask him a question about scholarly collaborations to which I do not know the answer. His answer could “change the dynamic” for me and others here, but you’ve commented in his stead (as you have every right to do) and did not even answer my question. Maybe the question was stupid and deserves no answer. Very well.

                  Again, I am at a loss at how to explain or persuade you to look beyond what you perceive to be my position. I guess that is just the way it is. You seem stuck. Perhaps more significantly, however, I come away with a sense–I own this as my perception of community dynamics at ASOH–that to challenge you (like Steve BC recently did) is to earn a snark-lashing of sorts based on your perception whether it is truly deserved or not. It seems to me that this kind of dynamic might lead commenters towards self or group-censorship–kind of like Gil Bailey’s scapegoat/pneumonic phenomenon.

                  Again, I admit it is your right and even your duty to snark and upbraid as you see fit. I can only restate my appreciation and gratefulness for being given the chance to make aware, explain, and ask questions.


                  1. I appreciate you hanging in there. I would say, though, that snark-lashing is rare from me. You are one of only two commenters who have been on the receiving end of such in the last few months. I reserve it for when someone just will not make their point and move on, but insist upon pushing everyone to agree that any who disagree are obviously all wrong and the particular commenter is completely right. I will go further and say that I think you would be hard-pressed to find a head of any site who routinely engages with commenters who is so receptive to and thoughtful about serious disagreement. Make your point as persuasively as you can, remembering what the focus of this site is – and if you don’t receive a chorus of hosannahs, consider the possibility that maybe you have not been as persuasive or as in possession of all the facts that you think you have been. Steve BC was a bad example for you to use, for in his case, I completely reversed course, which kind of undercuts your argument that I am intolerant of opposing opinions.

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                    1. I agree, Charlie, that your snark lashing is indeed rare and very rare. Also, I gratefully acknowledge the fact of your engagement with commenters. It is awesomely refreshing. To be clear I have not said nor have I ever meant to imply that you are intolerant of opposing positions. Not at all. Your allowing me the opportunity to “hang in there” speaks to your fairness. Again, I am eternally grateful that you have even allowed the opportunity to present the case. This is also an indication of how unusual and rare you, your blog, and this community are.

                      i do now see that I have been remiss in connecting BiP to being “a sign of hope” while we endeavor to take “the next right step” which is the core mission of this site. I apologize for the kerfluffle this has caused in the ASOH community. Therefore, I will endeavor to make that connection by noting the hopeful and even joyful reactions I have witnessed in both Catholics and non-Catholics after having shared the evidence of the possibility of BiP with them. Perhaps that will help to shift my troublesome insistence into perspective, but perhaps not. So be it.

                      First of all, you are correct in noting that I find the issue of “where Peter is” to be critical. Perhaps I make too much of this point. I don’t know. If possible I would like to have a discussion about St. Ambrose’s truism and how significant or insignificant a matter it has been in history and how or if it pertains to what the Church is experiencing today. Maybe Desmond would even weigh in on that discussion. That would be for another time, if you would allow it.

                      Back to the connection of BiP to the core mission of this blog. I believe that some people’s hopeful glimmer that I have witnessed is related to “cognitive dissonance” that Stormtracker Ed expounded upon in a comment the other day. This next piece may be where we seem to be at loggerheads.. It seems to me that their hope rises due to the possible examination of the evidence itself and what it might reveal and NOT due to the wrong-headed idea that declaring the resignation invalid according to the law itself will be a quick fix. NO, indeed not.

                      Rather, to a man they seem to understand that the longstanding, Freemasonic, Modernist cadre of shark-tooth-like clerics and laity that has refused to leave Holy Mother Church and has worked to transform Her into a man-centered, utopia-producing, philanthropic organization will likely maintain control of the infrastructure while the fullness of the Faith will reside in the “stinky sheep” who are forced out of the infrastructure and underground. They understand that more likely than not, the havoc and persecution raging in the Middle East, China, Rwanda, Europe, Central and South America, South Africa, and Nigeria will burst out of its cocoon here in North America where it has been nurtured in its incubation by useful idiots and leftist, atheistic communists as they complete their “long march through the institutions”.

                      Thus as you note, Charlie, every last farthing will be paid collectively (as it should be) and the blessing of justice and mercy will begin to be met on a universal level (as it should be).

                      This is wherein “the sign of hope” exhibits for the people I have spoken to about the evidence of BiP: they seem to experience an immediate and sustained spiritual and mental relief. Some people have even called it a “red-pill” moment. Almost reflexively they understand that they might not need to “square circles” like Chapter Eight of Amoris Laetitia or the apparent abrogation of immutable doctrines like Capital Punishment. When informed of the existing black-and-white evidence that might indicate BiP, they breathe a sigh of relief and say something like, “Whew! Either way (Benedict or Francis) it’s going to be bad, but I’m glad to know that there’s a possibility that I am not going crazy.” And that, persuasive or not, is the connection to this site’s core mission and my case.

                      For myself in regards to Ratzinger/Benedict, I greatly appreciate Desmond’s detailed and considered explanation. It was confirmation of what I intuited and what I see as God’s hand working in this time of apostasy. (And no, I don’t claim to know anything with any certainty except that there is a God and I’m not Him and that the Faith from which that certainty stems is a pure gift that can be lost). To be clear, for me, Benedict is a hero and not a coward or an abusive father.

                      It seems to me that kind of like Trump (and no, Trump is no Messiah and I do not put my trust in him or government), Benedict was the only man for the job because at one time, as his earlier writings indicate, he leaned towards Rahner’s theology. BUT as Desmond explains so beautifully, along the way he “got back in the boat”. In my opinion it was a conversion through grace. Some people don’t seem to want to allow for the grace of his conversion or for the possible working of grace in his choice of words on February 11, 2013. But since he is still alive, it seems to me that his past leanings may have allowed for the fatal flaw in the Modernists’ attempt at total and complete takeover. This fatal flaw strikes me as similar to the satan’s thinking that he had destroyed Jesus through the crucifixion; yet that was not the supernatural reality.

                      I find it frustrating when some say that Benedict was a bad father who abandoned his children and betrayed us. That is not at all my take on his singular difficult decision in history. Again, I think Benedict is a hero. I could be wrong.

                      As I see it (please take it or leave it), God has used Benedict’s difficult and maybe triumphant decision to allow the extensive rot to be revealed (you say as much, Charlie) while possibly using this human means to protect His promises of infallibility of the Papal Office as well as the indefectibility of Holy Mother Church and the immutability of Her doctrine. Again, I could be wrong. God’s ways and thoughts are not mine–thank God.

                      If the matter of “where Peter is” is less critical than I intuit OR the examination of juridical validity according to the law itself never occurs OR it proves otherwise than BiP, then I will stay as I am “in the boat” and I will encourage others to do the same. For just as at other times in my life when the mystery of God’s ways were totally beyond my apprehension, because of the gift of Faith I can only stand with Peter and say, “Where else would I go? You alone have the words of eternal life.”


                    2. Thank you for this much more balanced and nuanced take on your argument. I would note that Desmond did not say that Cdl. Ratzinger got back in the boat; rather that Karl Rahner got completely out of it – and Ratzinger was not willing to go there with him. It is, I think, an important distinction.

                      Your second to last paragraph is key. Four years ago, as it became obvious that some troubling things were coming from Pope Francis, I was largely defending him. At one point, I was speaking privately with a friend in media who was doing the same. I told him he should really limit his defenses very narrowly to the particular subject at hand, a limited rather than a sweeping defense. I went through the history of the Papacy and reminded him it could get a LOT worse than it was then – and still not affect the validity of the Papacy or even this particular Pope. I mused that Catholics in general had long been imputing authority on a much larger scope than any Pope actually had – even imputing purely temporal and political authority that he does NOT have to him. I also noted that not one in a thousand has any clue how tightly limited infallibility is and how rarely it comes into play…yet people seem to think every casual thought that passes a Pope’s lips must be infallible. That has NEVER been actual Catholic doctrine. Yet if you think it is, then you must seek for reasons why he is not really Pope or else believe the Church is false. I know the Church is true and has been led by more than a few unworthy pontiffs in its history – and some who even enjoyed writing bad and heretical theology (doesn’t matter if they don’t proclaim it ex cathedra in union with the Bishops of the world – infallibility does not apply). I suspected even then that we had drifted into a dangerous papolatry that God might well use this papacy to correct.

                      As for Amoris Laetitia, there is no need to go into exotic palliatives. For a Pope’s rare infallible pronouncements to be valid, they must be made in union with the Bishops of the world. The Bishops do not have to meet, only to give the consent of silence. If a group of Cardinals formally objects or files a Dubia, the doctrine is not confirmed until that dubia has been answered and met with the consent of the Bishops of the world. I know the Vatican thought it was clever in not responding to the dubia – but the reality is that Amoris Laetitia cannot begin to be considered settled doctrine until the unanswered questions are answered and then confirmed by the Bishops. Given the Pope’s refusal to answer, Amoris Laetitia could probably not be determined to be doctrinal without a formal council of Bishops, even were the dubia to be finally answered.

                      I know on one occasion Pope Francis said that some pronouncement he made was “irreformable.” The fact is a pronouncement does NOT become irreformable because a Pope wishes it or even commands it to be so. It only becomes irreformable when it fully meets several objective criteria. As much as Pope Francis likes to pretend to an imperial will that sweeps everything before him, the Pope is only a Monarch, not an autocrat. He is the successor of Peter, not of Christ. As tumultuous and disordered as this papacy may have been so far, there is nothing in it that affects infallibility or ineffability. People are very upset because they do not know the formal doctrine of the Church on these matters. I pray that all these events will goad people to studying what it actually is rather than the misguided ideas many have long held.

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                    3. And the mystery of the church lives on. If the papacy (not the pope) is torn down, what will we be left with? I see it as pure confusion and this is precisely what the evil one wants. If everything is muddled, then it feeds into confusion and the relative value system being propagated which feeds the spirit of free masonry where all religions are the same. The cynicism it engenders will cause folks to lose trust in most, if not all institutions. Government and socialism will start to fill the void as people look for purpose. The good news is God really is in control and history shows that the right saint will come at the right time. I endeaver to do my part to be a little saint. Blessings!

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                    4. Amen, Doug.
                      Heaven and earth shall pass away, but my words shall not pass away.
                      And I say also unto thee, That thou art Peter, and upon this rock I will build my church; and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it.


                2. Well said, Charlie, Sorry about my late response(s). I was AWOL on an extended date with my wife yesterday afternoon and evening – and with old friends, Margarito and Consuelo from the San Luis Valley in Southern Colorado. You saw them with me at Mass this morning.

                  Charlie, I see that my ‘quick fix’ observation, mayhap has struck a nerve somewhere – so I shall try to respectfully pour some Balm of Gilead upon it.

                  Perhaps if I also apply some bandage of further explanation in the form of further data about Ratzinger/Benedict and Rahner – a bandage to hold that balm, so to speak – some passions may cool.

                  At the Council [Vatican Council II], in its sessions, forums, and even outside on the streets of Rome, Rahner had only just begun to reveal how radical his thinking had become. His coming out of a dissident(?) closet – was quite gradual. Rahner did not all at once announce that he was out of step with the balancing role of Catholic Tradition – particularly in the light of ‘Divine Revelation’. The fullness of that revelation took years. [If you wish I can expand upon this later to some of the others here, Charlie.]

                  EXEMPLI GRATIA: One of the most contested battles at the Council took place during the drafting of the Dogmatic Document on Divine Revelation, ‘Dei Verbum’ [‘The Word of God]’. The ‘German Bishops’ ‘ draft on the ‘Word of God’ completely ignored any significant role for Tradition. It was essentially – if subtly – a document which appeared to be Scripture Alone in orientation.

                  The German Wing of the attending Bishops made such determined demands on the drafting Commission such that no agreement or compromise could be found which was consistent with the teachings of the Church on the role of Tradition.

                  At that point, POPE PAUL VI stepped in with his famous ‘INTERVENTION’. That intervention replaced the language of what we today know as Numbers 9-12 of’Dei Verbum’. In fact, it was and remains the strongest statement in the history of the Church on the role of Tradition. It even surpassed the Council of Trent in that regard.

                  Paul VI made it clear that this concept of the integral role of Tradition with Scripture in Divine Revelation was ‘De Fide’ – and that the Council must use his exact language which he had injected into the document.

                  While R’atzinger did not yet have a clear view totally clear of Rahner’s influence, Paul VI’s Intervention’ began to open the eyes of the young Ratzinger [still in his 30’s – yet already a Conciliar ‘peritus’ (expert) & personal theological advisor to German Cardinal Frings at the Council]. Within a couple of years he was completely free of Rahner’s influence on subjects such as ‘Tradition’ as part of Revelation.

                  Next, he began to recall the examples of Rahner attending evening meetings on the streets of Rome at outdoor cafes – where Rahner ridiculed the idea that both Sacred Scripture and [Sacred] Tradition came from the same font – which is as a whole interpreted by the Magisterium. Rahner would while holding court on this subject, snicker at the idea of turning two faucet handles [one for Scripture and the other for Tradition] at the same time – by mimicking that action with his hands extended in front of him. No role for Sacred Tradition there.

                  While somewhat with his fellow German theologians at the there. In particular he had acted with Charity towards those he disagreed with. It is said by confidants of Ratzinger, that he began to notice the less than charitable words and actions of his old mentor at the Council.

                  Did that make him break his student/mentor and friendship relationships with Rahner? No, it didn’t. Frankly, grown ups who are mature Christians do not act like that. No, they don’t. The mature ones try to exercise positive influence, maintain love, keep open communication, speak and act with love … act with the Caritas [totally self-sacrificial] form of love.

                  Next, Rahner was central in forming the theological Journal, ‘Concilium’ in the last year of the Council, 1965. Ratzinger, believing that open communication would always win the day for truth, joined in the editorial effort of that publication. It was manned for the most part by leaders of the progressive wing at the Council.

                  After he experienced the horror of the student uprisings at the University of Tubingen in 1969, in 1973 he helped found the theological Journal, ‘Communio’ – which was much more conservative or traditional than ‘Concilium’ was, or ever has been since. He also stopped working on Concilium.

                  In 1975 he wrote an article on the 10th Anniversary of the close of Vatican Council II, strongly criticizing the positions of the progressives who wanted to go beyond what the Council had said, in effect, who began to openly ‘spin’ the meaning of the Council Documents – particularly the Dogmatic Documents. He spared not the radical Traditionalists either – who as he accurately observed – wanted to return to the formal and dry uber-intellectual sounding scholastic style and writings of the pre-conciliar age.

                  [I was a University student in both milieus. I saw, experienced, the synoptic value of the scholastic style, while at the same time I truly appreciated the openness to non-scholastic language which in my approach by then was CAPABLE of more ably speaking deeply from and to the heart as well as the head. Jesus exemplifies the ability for both approaches [speaking to both heart and head] in the Gospels.]

                  At this point the intellectual breach between Ratzinger and Rahner was more or less complete. But Ratzinger still – being both a human being and a Christian – did not despise his old professor. But from there on, he continued to grow in his independent understanding of the roots of the Church & and Her Mystical Body. He was in gradual yet rapid theological development from 1969 through till the early 80’s.

                  He continued to try to work with the Progressive wing of the theological world – again in an attempt to try to guide it back into the mainstream of Catholicism. He tried to work with those uber-progressives he now radically disagreed with on many key issues.

                  That is why and how 6 years later, Pope St. John Paul II chose him in 1981 to become Prefect of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith [CDF] – where he did a masterful job. I have friends and some colleagues who were his closest allies there at CDF – and they observed that growth which gradually continued into Ratzinger’s old age.

                  In that role as Prefect, Ratzinger attracted the hatred of both the Radical Left and the Radical Right [the Left openly calling him ‘Der Panzer Cardinal’]. Both those extremes are riddled with wannabe theologians who view themselves as experts qualified to attack and ridicule men of good will who theologically live outside their camp. In most cases, they do not have a proverbial clue about advanced theology, nor in many cases about charity towards opponents – not from a truly Catholic perspective,

                  Callow fellows of any age are wont to play the role of 5th Quarter Quarterbacks [someone who announces after the game that he saw everything clearly – claiming the same insights DURING the game – and thereby trying to belittle men whom they could not hold a candle to on the theological or intellectual playing field].

                  Friendships, personal, professional or intellectual do not die – certainly not in a moment – not with mature Christian adults.

                  And just to assure one and all that I do not consider myself above the fray – I confess that once upon a time – in the early 70’s – I was one of the hotheads among the Uber traditionalists – who didn’t know his limitations. I could not really see when I was either cherry picking events, or accepting as authoritative the critiques of other wannabe’s – to attack or belittle the theological writings of men and some women whom I did not yet even remotely understand. [I was a typical uber-traditionalist or uber-leftist in THAT PARTICULAR regard.]

                  I am still learning. I study on average at least 3 to 4 Hours a day. I do not know it all – nor will I ever. But at 78, I have finally I think, come to understand the basic differences between what I might want to think I know – and what I really don’t know.

                  God is good. He led me to this – and gave me the grace to accept this fact – and to apply it daily to my thoughts and meditations. More importantly – he has taught me that to unqualifiedly judge others as heretics or dissidents is a dangerous game to play with my eternity.

                  Earlier in ignorance I could do that with only venial sin. But once this lesson above has been well taught and accepted – it gives one pause in judging others or playing the expert where in fact I am only still a student – compared with a Ratzinger or a Wojtyla, etc., etc.

                  Beyond that, I can’t judge others who do that either. I can only try to get them to weigh and consider over the long haul – and never to think they have arrived – or to imagine themselves as experts within areas they have not much more knowledge than a rank beginner. If the day ever comes in which you hear me say I have arrived – please pray very hard for me.

                  “Pray for me, as I will for thee, that we may one day merrily meet in heaven.” [St. Thomas More.]

                  All my love in Christ


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                  1. Thank you, Desmond, for your gentle balm in answering my question and for confirming with your personal experience and expertise what I had suspected through your description of the mature, Christian response to polarization. I suspect that the 2X4 moment you described in an earlier comment is part of God’s long haul strategy to gather as many of His chicks who will come to Him with recognition, repentance, contrition, and conversion.

                    I am with you in acknowledging with Saint Paul, “Pray for me lest I myself be cast away” should I think I that I “have arrived”. Surely it is only at the Beatific Vision where any of us truly “arrive”.

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                    1. I was speaking in that case – primarily – in the area of actual indepth knowledge about great minds such as, for instance, Joseph Ratzinger & Karol Wojtyla. I read and often hear people speaking of their work (as if they are intimately familiar with their works, people who in actual fact do not know or comprehend their work at all. Such people one hears such trying to critique these great thinkers. People who do not really have a proverbial clue about what Wojtyla & Ratzinger actually believe and teach.

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                3. If I may interject a (serious/facetious) segue…Is it ok to pray for RBG to want to enjoy retirement, (in the best of health), away from SCOTUS and officially step down? As Kavanaugh’s voting record is disconcerting…

                  “Justice John Roberts and the court’s newest member, Brett Kavanaugh, have voted in tandem on nearly every case that’s come before them since Kavanaugh joined the court in October. They’ve been more likely to side with the court’s liberal justices than its other conservatives.”


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                  1. Umpteenth predicament: should I take B’s time to clear my comment about my typo or just let it go; (my angel switched my q and g keys.) From now on, I shall let sleeping typos sleep undisturbed. Anyway, Jesus, Mary, I love you, save souls.

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                    1. Oh Dear Maggie, Ask, and it shall be given you; seek, and ye shall find; knock, and it shall be opened unto you: For every one that asketh receiveth; and he that seeketh findeth; and to him that knocketh it shall be opened. 😉

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  15. I’m completely out of the loop…for 2 1/2 weeKS we’ve all been working & visiting my mother in law who is back in icu forever trying to pull out her ivs…ugh…she’s gonna be the death of our family…lol..j/k. Funny thing. my Holy hour today I opened up to the scriptures of the cure of Peters mom in law..hahaha…I don’t know though. ..she’s septic and everything is shutting down…glad u n Stevebc are no longer in disagreement, Charlie is fun & funny…stretching forth my hand…ouch…plz keep us all in ur prayers. .TNRS ASOH…xoxoxoxoxoxo 🤗😘😇

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    1. Linda, you can count on my ongoing prayers for you and yours. I am heartened by your cheery demeanor despite the difficulties you are undergoing. xoxoxoxoxoxo {{{Linda}}} ❤

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      1. Awwww jlynnbyrd…God bless you so much…I’m glad I’m coming off as cheery because inside I’m a real selfish mess😞 truly, watching the goodness and raw holiness of these heroic nurses & drs gives me a glimpse of what Charlie describes as the prayer of “doing!” They are amazing & such a sign of hope to us all

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    2. Charlie and I are fine, Linda, but thank you so much for your concern. I figure that I have learned so much from Charlie over the past few years that I should return the favor a little bit. The balance still heavily favors him toward me, though. 😀

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      1. Stevebc you just made me laugh out loud😅.. thank you for that…you two are like a couple of springtime squirrels playfully chasing each other through the newly budded trees🤗🤗

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      1. Mick 5 of her 7 grandchildren surrounded her tonight with such love and devotion it made me numb in speech at their love for their gramma…one of them, her name is Jennifer, took to pulling off her oxygen mask, giving her water, and wiping her mouth continuously knowing she was endangering herself with the harmful pneumonia bacteria. .no gloves…no fear….she has never been baptised, but her love for her grandmother amazed me. I ask of you all prayers for her that she might come to know Christ and become baptised…what a beautiful soul. ..oh my

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          1. Come to find out, she said when she was 11, Jesus just appeared to her while she lay in her bed. She said she just stared at His face for such a long long time…she is wearing a little cross and her grandma opened her eyes and reached for it. I witnessed it myself. Of course Jennifer started crying…I was praying the chaplet over grandma today…alone…and I could be bat dodo crazy, but I interiorly felt Christ tell me that the delay of all this “end of life” thing was not really about Mary, for she is destined for heaven, but that it was for all those around her in her time of need to kinder faith, or ignite it. We all have such this special bond now spending all this time together….How I love God’s family. ..Mary…in my opinion is truly a living unknown Saint

            Liked by 3 people

  16. Brothers and Sisters, take time to watch this documentary on drugs and homelessness “Seattle is Dying” on Youtube. Be aware that San Francisco is WORSE than Seattle. If you care about society at all, we must gather the ill and do what Rhode Island is doing. Something must be done.

    Please watch and pass on to anyone that might have some clout in your cities……pass to your representatives.

    Liked by 6 people

    1. Thanks for bringing this to our attention, San San. I think the first three comments under the video say a lot about why Seattle and San Francisco, among other large American cities, are in trouble. Toss out God, bring in liberalism/socialism and voila… a host of human problems emerge. Maranatha!

      Liked by 4 people

    2. Sansan, my big city home town is Seattle. That is where I met my wife Jean. That is where we married. in 1969. Frankly, the extreme left controlled not just Seattle – but most King Country politics even then. Leftists thrive in chaos. They know that. The chaos you see in Seattle is not accidentally created by dummies. The Left intends that chaos.

      Seattle had the lowest church attendance rate of any city in the USA in the 1960’s – and long before then. Seattle was primarily a pagan haven even in the 1960’s. So in large part was San Francisco. San Francisco was a homosexual haven by the mid-1950’s.

      We left Seattle the year we were married. Whenever I revisited Seattle after being away for awhile, a cold chill went up my back as I went through town. [I’m NOT exaggerating – nor did I imagine it.].

      The first time that happened in January of 1973, I called my best friend from my parents house where I was visiting. [He was my best man at my wedding – and we had been best friends in University. He was a devout Catholic – and one of the most observant men I’ve ever known.]

      He lived up in Mt. Vernon. I told him about that ‘cold chill’ feeling and asked him if he thought I was imagining things or ‘weirded out’ or something. I will never forget his answer. He said, ‘No, I’m down there every couple of months or so to visit mom and dad for a day. I feel it every single time. Most of the Catholics I know who are spiritually aware or attuned to people and things around them – if they don’t live here and so aren’t blind to it due to familiarity – the attuned types feel it – just like you just did Dez. It’s not always as strong a feeling as you had, sometimes just a feeling of unease. But you are far from alone.’

      I asked, ‘What is it? He said, ‘I think it is actually the devil, or his servants. Whatever it is, you sensed pure evil.’ [That is my memory of that conversation from about 45 years ago.]

      I finally managed to get my sister out of there about 2 years ago. She sold the house and moved to Kansas to relocate near one of her sons. It took her a while to get used to ‘normal’. Only after she had been gone for a while did she realize just how horrific Seattle has become. It is a nightmare. You could quite literally not pay me enough money to live there. I feel sorry for those who cannot get out.

      All my love in Christ


      Liked by 6 people

      1. Desmond, so happy that you and yours made it out of Seattle. I live in the Bay Area and volunteer at St. Vincent de Paul. Yesterday while giving out lunches I experienced the demon first hand. This one woman who is usually quite stoic came in “high as a kite”, she was hissing and sticking her tongue out at me and growling. The demon in her asked me if I wanted to get high, I said no. The sickness of drugs and homelessness is everywhere. I pray that the video I posted brings about radical change. Even though we’d like to move out of this area, I feel that God wants us here to do what we can to save souls.

        Liked by 7 people

      1. Please watch the Video. Rhode Island has a government “drug” program to help those addicted get off of meth, Heroin, etc. People either stay in jail or participate in the program. It’s been running for 3 years and they’ve been able to get the rot off their streets.

        Liked by 5 people

      2. Christine, I am watching this documentary with my DH now and the second part of the video speaks to some amazing drug programs, non-profits group involvement and laws already on the books properly enforced that seems to have made a positive impact on lives and the community. ❤

        Liked by 2 people

    3. My sister and her family just moved from Seattle to Wyoming. She felt almost a sense of panic – needed to leave. I remember the day when Seattle proudly legalized marijuana…

      Liked by 5 people

      1. Joe, my husband grew up in Seattle. He loves it there; but the first time I visited his family there (25 years ago, when we were dating), I felt what I can only describe as an evil presence as soon as I arrived in the city. I’ve never been able to shake that. For years, my husband talked about maybe wanting to retire there. That freaked me out, so I started praying like crazy. Anyway, the last time he was there a couple of years ago, he came home and said, “As much as I love Seattle, I could never live there again; it’s changed too much.” Thanks be to God that we’ve dodged the “Seattle retirement” bullet.

        Liked by 5 people

    4. If any of you who know I live south-east just outside of the Seattle area wonder why I have not commented about the obvious decline of sense in Seattle, I used to spend a lot of time in Seattle in the 80’s and less as the time went on due to withdrawal from a deteriorating situation that made it more difficult to go and be there. In these days, I prefer not to go there unless I have to due to traffic and parking problems to say the least. I have been aware of the deterioration and worsening irresponsibilities occurring there. I have absolutely no effect there and can only lament and pray.

      Liked by 2 people

  17. Love the Holy Boldness of Cardinal Sarah! Can hardly wait to read the English translation of his new book: Le soir approche et déjà le jour baisse (Evening approaches and the day is now almost over).

    Many articles are sharing treasures therein, such as this: “The Guinean cardinal, prefect of the Vatican’s Congregation for Divine Worship, said that using the Bible to promote migration constitutes “false exegesis,” adding that it is better ‘to help people flourish in their culture than to encourage them to come to Europe.’”

    Word is the English edition of the book should be out around September 1st. As Edward Pentin reports here, “The book, the last volume of three that he has written with the French author Nicolas Diat, will be ‘the most important’ due to what he says is the ‘decadence of our time’ that has ‘all the faces of mortal peril.’”

    Liked by 8 people

    1. I’ll say it again — Cardinal Sarah is a great man, a holy priest, and a courageous shepherd. With the possible exception of Joseph Ratzinger (Benedict XVI) I cannot think of a more noble person walking the earth today. Alas, as my Irish Literature professor, Mary Curran Doyle, used to say, “giants are no longer in vogue”, so large segments of the Church ignore this man. But I believe that his message will prevail because he has given himself completely to the Lord. Send us, O Lord, Holy Apostles for your Church.

      Liked by 12 people

          1. Point well taken, Diane. At the same time, evil must eventually exhaust itself, so the expectant question must be: What’s in God’s Plan to renew His Church? He’s THE ONE with Supreme Expertise in drawing good from the most vile evil. As Angel Gabriel said: For nothing will be impossible with God. 😉

            Liked by 3 people

    2. In in-depth interview, (translated), with Cardinal Sarah about his views on various matters. Snippet:

      “We are accustomed to barbarism. It doesn’t even surprise us anymore! I want to raise a cry of alarm, which is also a cry of love. I do so with a heart full of filial gratitude for the Western missionaries who died in my land of Africa and who communicated to me the precious gift of faith in Jesus Christ. I want to follow their lead and receive their inheritance! ….

      But I would like to point out that everything is prepared for a renewal. I see families, monasteries, and parishes that are like oases in the middle of a desert. It is from these oases of faith, liturgy, beauty, and silence that the West will be reborn.”

      Liked by 5 people

  18. Charlie, I could not figure out how to reply directly to your post about Bishop Gregory, so I’m just putting it here.

    The part which peaked my interest was your justified revulsion over the banality of the 2002 Dallas USCCB meeting which was supposed to “deal with” the clerical ‘homosexuality’ issue.

    I was right there, interviewing people, staying in the same hotel. Wilton Gregory was Chairman and in charge of that meeting. I watched him as the order was given to all the Bishops in attendance that, the word and term of homosexuality was not even to be mentioned or brought to the floor in open meeting.

    I was scandalized when that order was given, and daily as no Bishop seemed to have the desire and nerve to publicly stand up for the truth by stating the obvious that: the vast majority of clerical sexual abuse is directed at adolescent boys and young adult males – that rooted in “society’s acceptance of homosexuality”.

    Then, on the last day, in the next to the last session [if I remember the sessions correctly] Bishop Fabian Bruskewitz of Lincoln, NB, heroically stood and faced down the many powerful voices in that room who did not want the homosexuality issue to be raised. I was in that room, I heard him defend the truth in the face of the attendant ‘roaring lions’.

    I have no issue with Gregory as to how he ran a diocese. I have no issue outside of what he did at that and some other USCCB functios. He most often spoke in a politically correct voice within his role as head of the USCCB.

    Again, I have no in depth knowledge of how he runs a diocese. I do know he was not what I had hoped for as head of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops.

    I mean no offense. I simply felt a moral obligation to witness to what I saw and heard in Dallas – and to express some dismay at his recent appointment to D.C.

    All my love in Christ


    Liked by 7 people

    1. Thank you for your witness, Desmond.

      We, the Church, are in such a tangled web of a mess. Born and raised in Bishop Bruskewitz’s neighboring state of Iowa, I often heard wonderful things about the Diocese of Lincoln in Nebraska and the faithful, orthodox leadership of Bishop Bruskewitz. After attending a Catholic conference in Lincoln last June, news of serious, longstanding problems with homosexual clergy in the Diocese of Lincoln burst onto the scene of the already shocking McCarrick explosion. Rod Dreher has covered this (the problems at the Diocese of Lincoln) extensively over at his site on the American Conservative. A series of articles are here, with a new one published this week as Bishop Conley has been faced with addressing these problems. Unfortunately, Bishop Bruskewitz did NOT handle things well at home. I do not wish to ruin his name; his good deeds are many and give glory to God. My point is that we have all fallen short. Charlie’s closing line to this, his latest piece, rings true in the face of the revelations involving the good, orthodox Diocese of Lincoln: God has a plan – one that uses both our strengths and our flaws to accomplish His Sovereign Will.

      A quote from the original article in Rod Dreher’s series: “Monsignor Leonard Kalin, was the vocation director for the Diocese of Lincoln and pastor of the Newman Center at the University of Nebraska for an entire generation (1970-1998) under two bishops with a reputation for impeccable orthodoxy. When he died a decade ago, Kalin was remembered publicly as a good and holy shepherd of young souls. It was a façade.”

      Be Merciful, O Lord. Maranatha!

      Liked by 5 people

      1. We have all fallen short. Yes. This ought to be the one gut-wrenching truth that we confront first in order to able to go to Our Suffering Lord without pretenses, without dozing, without fleeing on a course that could lead to despair. So necessary to remove the baggage and useless human calculations from our thinking. Acknowledging our many personal failures and affronts to His Word, reminding ourselves constantly that we owe Him everything, and the slightest big of trust in Him is sufficient to get back up on our feet again and again.

        Awake. Alert. Nimble. Docile. Trusting.


        Liked by 5 people

      2. Beckita, thank you for this information. I have met with and discussed many faithful issues with Bruskewitz. Before now, I had not heard of this. Conley I know from his term as an auxiliary Bishop here in Denver. He is very faithful/orthodox from everything we saw and heard of him here. I must now include him on my special needs prayer list.

        Liked by 3 people

        1. You know, Desmond, I do think there was a time when good bishops – and lay people – sincerely believed they were protecting the Church, and the priest, by trying to deal, in a discreet way, with those who had grave problems. I imagine there was sincerity in hoping that moving such a priest would, in the classic sense, take him away from the occasion of sin and, hopefully, that fresh start would bring about needed change. Who can know, for each individual bishop, when he became overwhelmed with the reality that such a way of trying to deal with a problem wasn’t effective?

          What struck me most deeply as the problems in Lincoln have come to light is the truth that we need Divine Intervention to set things right.

          Liked by 5 people

    2. Dearest Desmond…I borrowed ur book from the library, Trial, Tribulation & Triumph…but I think I will purchase it…it’s a very big book…can’t wait to read it…I have no time…I keep asking Jesus if maybe there might be a book abode in the Kingdom so that (should I be fortunate enough to make it through to heaven by God’s great Mercy) we can all read all these WONDERFUL and heartening books 🤓

      Liked by 3 people

      1. Dear Linda, I indeed hope you will enjoy its various sections – dealing with the past, the present, and the future.

        Liked by 3 people

      2. Linda, In heaven – after someone have received the Beatific Vision, ALL KNOWLEDGE is available to them simply by questioning and thinking about it. It will be ‘mediate’ knowledge, not ‘immediate’ knowledge such as God possesses [God knows all thing at once, immediately, without thought or questioning].

        The one thing those in heaven cannot comprehend even ‘mediately’ is this: they cannot comprehend God as He comprehends Himself.

        In a word, there is no need of books in heaven. Just as Christians begin to share in the Divine Nature of God at the moment of their Baptism, the process is not complete till and if they enter heaven. This holds true of the human learning process as well – which continues till the Beatific Vision,

        The purpose of books is to help us learn in the here and now – where we need learned knowledge [garnered from books or otherwise] in order to live an orderly holy life on earth.

        All my love in Christ


        Liked by 8 people

        1. Dearest Desmond,
          That makes so much sense to me. Thank you for taking the time to explain all that to me. The people of God amaze Me by their illumiination of faith their goodness & their generosity.

          In lieu off all that…I guess I best get reading if only 1 page per day😄

          All my love in Christ as well🤗

          Liked by 2 people

          1. Right, Linda, I strongly recommend against trying to read it in a single sitting. It has many levels. The average educated layman can learn much of the Church’s teachings in it. On the other hand, it has the depth to be used as a seminary text on Tradition or Eschatology. The first time I saw absolute proof of this, was when I was at EWTN filming one of the series down there. As Colin Donovan and I were walking on campus, three young Franciscan priests ran up to me and asked, ‘Are you Desmond Birch?’ I responed, ‘Why do you want to know?’ [Colin and I both laughed.] They then told me that their Eschatology priest/prof at Mt. Saint Mary’s had used it to teach their eschatology class. They then whipped out their copies and asked for autographs. They were so impressive has holy young priest monks. My heart felt particularly light for the rest of the day.

            Liked by 2 people

      1. I understand that. I am equally disappointed in what I have just heard about Bruskewitz. I haven’t read the evidence – but it doesn’t sound good. There were better choices for D.C., as not just any old Diocese. It’s Archbishop will be appointed Cardinalk – and will be the American Churchman most closely related with the Papal Nuncio there. Frankly, I’m dismayed at THAT prospect.

        Liked by 3 people

        1. Indeed, I have realized the importance of the See of DC and it’s why Charlie’s sharing of the interior light he received is cause for us all to pray very much that God’s Will is done through, with and in Archbishop Gregory. In prayer, looking with joyful hope for prelates all over this country and world to rise to the greatness God wants to take them in these times of dire need.

          Liked by 3 people

    3. Ah, I found the footage I wanted to share. As agonizing as it is to witness, I’m counting on a great rousing and the necessary response. Most days we can but watch and pray.

      Liked by 4 people

        1. Somebody recently shot and killed beauties like these a bit downriver. Coming up that wash seeing first one, then another and another in that posture would give anyone pause. I caught a flicker of an ear, then noticed the band stallion in the upright position. Just 3 snoozing mustangs and the alert one who understood how tired his buddies were. I don’t count anything as dead until it’s clearly dead. And even then, anything is possible.

          Liked by 3 people

  19. I asked Desmond if I could share a reply he wrote to someone on FB today. After Desmond posted a link to the article, Catholicism in a Time of Dissolution, found here at Crisis Magazine, a question was raised about the reasons for why we are in this dire state in the Church. Dynamic insights here.

    Desmond’s reply:

    The answer to your question is that it would take something of large book length to convincingly explain the reasons for the current dissolution. And, I happen to know for a fact that it isn’t explained merely by saying there are bad ‘broken’ men in the Church and Her hierarchy.

    The current melieu took centuries to develop – centuries of weak and bad philosophy, theology, ecclesiology, Protestant Revolt, social disintegration in the post Industrial Revolution Age, societal and moral dislocation from two devastating World Wars in the 20th century, etc., etc.

    Despite appearances to the contrary, the Lavender Mafia is much more a result of previous weakness and corruption, rather than the root cause. The root causes go back centuries.

    The author of this article is trying to get all serious Catholics to see just how great the current problems are. If every Lavender churchman dropped dead tomorrow, does anyone here believe that would stop the false doctrine and other moral perversions. 2/3 of those born and baptized Catholic in the USA think abortion should be a matter of personal choice. 90% of the married ‘Catholic’ couples of child bearing years think contraception is up to one’s personal conscience, etc.

    All the Lavenders dropping dead would not solve those problems!

    Only a general societal metenoia can or will accomplish this. Our Lady of Fatima described this in general over a century ago, in 1917. IF MAN REFUSED TO CONVERT, GOD WILL SEND A CHASTISEMENT OF SUFFICIENT PROPORTIONS TO GET THEIR ATTENTION.

    A note of humor. Most people in my generation or older, knew about the bullheaded stubbornness of mules. Anyone who had ever had to work with a mule was an expert in dealing with them. So here comes the most famous joke about the stubbornness of mules:

    One day a mule auctioneer was approached by a customer who had bought a pair of
    ‘trained mules’ from him the previous day. The customer had brought the mules back with him. He said to the auctioneer, ‘You said these were trained mules. They don’t obey the very simplest commands. They just stand there and go ‘Heee-Haaa’ every time I tell them to ‘Giddyap’.

    The auctioneer said, ‘Well, did you get their attention first?”

    The customer said, ‘What are ya talking about?’

    The auctioneer picked up a wooden 2×4, walked up and hit both mules between the ears as hard as he could. Then he said, ‘Giddyap’ and the mules instantly obeyed. Then he said, “First thing, you gotta get their attention.”

    I suggest that a quite high percentage of our people today may need a 2×4 treatment in order experience ‘metanoia’ sufficient to obey God and His law. They’ve been warned many times – by Our Lady of Fatima, etc. I’ve experienced so called good Catholics dismissing Fatima, etc. My belief is that God is going to have to get our attention.

    Liked by 10 people

    1. So, by degrees over time. Only stands to reason that movement in the right direction will be by degrees also, thus a work requiring much patience. Many are anticipating a mighty swing of the 2×4 in God’s Hand, a rousing and much deserved wallop to hasten movement in these times. “Get up, let us go.” No doubt a course the sluggish and woefully backslidden would rather not take. Heck, I suspect most of humanity has at least some objections to that route. Do not fear.

      St. John Paul II made a pretty big deal out of the youth. A great example to follow for those called to take up that portion of the work. I don’t agree with the old adage, “You can’t teach an old dog new tricks.” You can, but how very difficult, and how much inexhaustible patience it requires. Most often it’s just a case of putting them on your back, or at least on the back of a pack mule, to tote them uphill… kicking, screaming, and objections notwithstanding… with nothing more than prayer, fasting and sacrifice. Probably sounds unceremonious, but I’ve never been one to get hung up on superfluous ceremony.

      Whether the folks of our day, or the critters in the wild, I find it interesting most of the time it is the youngins’ that are willing to look our way, listen and approach. No wonder, since they are still relatively unbroke, somewhat nimble, and famished for the Truth.

      In the outdoors, the wild colts Bandit, Toh Yah, Xīwàng are examples of this to me. Don’t want to get sidetracked or bore anyone by sharing snippets of my trekking, but consider that God speaks to each of us in the way He sees fit. Oh, how many youth are like this colt, Toh Yah, shown in the following clip. Reminds me of Matthew 19:14 (but just ignore the website plug at the end, since I didn’t have time to edit it out).

      Not surprisingly the wee John Bosco Adventure Club continues to bloom, as solo treks have increasingly become group treks. Most recently, girls have been showing a keen interest, particularly in up close critter encounters of the mustang sort. Thing about taking the girls, is that they’re more successful at getting their dads to come along at some point. It follows that the dads, then, get the boys to come along. Pays to be nimble, since I tried this first the other way with little success.

      Long story short, I welcome all, but find the youth a better place to start.

      Liked by 6 people

      1. Nothing wrong about starting with youth. That’s why I teach seminarians.

        On another note, I don’t fear a chastisement for several reasons 1) It has been foretold by dozens of Canonized Saints, Blessed and Venerable. 2) They all testify that it will be sent as a mercy to wake up the somnolent. 3) If substantial numbers of of mankind does not repent and convert – the world will be on the verge of destroying a massive percentage its populace – if said mankind is left to its own devices.

        There is nothing to fear in the possibility of a great chastisement – because if it comes, it WILL be a Great Mercy. And the truly faithful will sense its approach and be spiritually well prepared for it.

        The only people who will have reason for fear – with be those who have rejected the waves of grace they will have received prior to such a possible event.

        All my love in Christ


        Liked by 5 people

    1. Respectfully, let this name go… who cares. He does not win and is a fool to back a creation who lost.

      I am sick and tired of everyone bringing this name up as Charlie has repeatedly stated he wished he never spoke of this person. Why continue to harp on the issue? I ask one and all, respectfully, to let this issue lie.

      Liked by 5 people

      1. I am unaware of what others may or may not say (including Charlie) in regard to any topic discussed other than what he or one his own may have placed in the particular arcticle to share with the public. I rarely ever address any of his followers nor do I read their commentaries below an arcticle, although I do pray all may benefit from Charlie’s understanding of what God has set out for him to do. If I take the moment to place a comment it is in regard to what is written in the arcticle not to what may be written by anyone else below or their own understanding of it. If I place a comment it is for a reason that I do so even should no one agree with it nor understand why I have written what I have written. As all are rightly entitled to speak openly here they may always do so, but remember that also I also reserve that same right to do so. May I now respectfully say to you “Do not ever tell me what I may or may not say, it is not your place to do so. And I personally I do not really care what you are sick & tired of” Good day to you.

        Liked by 1 person

          1. My apology, Sean, as I first cleared your video after only watching a bit of it and thought it was a humorous way of responding. However, when I viewed the entire clip, I discerned that it could easily be misconstrued and become something that fosters a fight so I have removed the link to the video.

            I think Charlie’s correction has been sufficient to refocus us on holding each other in good will.

            Again, my apology to you, Sean, and to all for not viewing the footage to the end before clearing it.

            Liked by 1 person

          2. Talking about a propensity earlier to go to the mashie niblick, this is without a doubt my favorite scene from “Tin Cup.” We’ve all got a little Roy (golfer) and Romeo (caddie) battling within. It’s pure fiction but all works out in the end.

            Liked by 3 people

        1. R. Sey, your original comment was cleared…as was Sean’s. Your avowal that you do not read what anyone says in comments here and do not care – and your prickly attitude towards mild criticism – smacks of a certain arrogant, imperiousness that is deeply unbecoming (and, of course, your assertion is undercut by the fact that you did, indeed, read Sean’s comment.) Please do not speak to fellow commenters as if they are your subjects and you, their master. It would have been sufficient to extend your disagreement.

          Liked by 3 people

          1. Unfortunately the setting for the website was accidentally changed unbeknownst to me therefore allowing his response to my own comment to appear in my email as does this one of yours. I was not going to respond to it at all however the phrase “sick & tired etc” seemed to be directed at me personally implying that I should be stifled and as such appeared condescending in nature therefore it was offensive to me. How a phrase may appear to you in writing may appear very different to someone else. My intention was not to give a harsh reply it was in response to the offensive phrase. If I misunderstood the phrase than I apologise to both your commentor & to yourself. Please do not presume my thoughts or attitudes to be of ill will however I also do not wish to be spoken down to as if I am your subject or that my voice is worth less than that of anyone else.

            Liked by 4 people

            1. Thanks, R. Sey. Now I understand what you are getting at better. Sean was noting that I have said, in response to such questions, at least 20 times, that I wished I had never mentioned that guy – as it is not necessary. And yet, people keep asking me or referencing him. In any case, sharp elbows, but no harm, no foul.

              Liked by 3 people

              1. Elbows…
                No one has elbows like Gordie Howe…

                I watched this thirty minute tribute to Mr. Hockey and say this is the quickest 27 minute video I have watched. Murray Howe’s eulogy of (awesome) his Father’s life is a demonstration of TRNS & Be a sign of hope… course of life. It is heartwarming and uplifting listening of Gordie’s goodness.

                Elbows? May we, one and all have such generosity and love of our fellow brother and sisters. (While at the same time being a Policeman on the rink:)

                R. Sey… I had contemplated a few snarky replies but prayed on this, at the afternoon 3PM hour of Divine Mercy, I found myself praying for you (and I) :

                For conversion of sinners during praying the Stations of the Cross and of the Chaplet of Divine Mercy. Soon thereafter, I offered these prayers and (everything else) into the evening mass Vigil of the 5th Sunday of Lent Offertory. Thankfully, merging our prayers into the Eternal Sacrifice.

                I hope you realize my comments were not directed, to you, per se, but to the greater ‘Charlie’ audience who believe ‘that’ guy holds any relevance.

                Liked by 4 people

  20. Following on Beckita’s quote from Desmond, I am coming to think that we get the leadership we deserve. We as a Catholic people, particularly in Europe and North America, with a few exceptions, have not been particularly careful in carrying out the commands of our Lord or the teaching of the Church. How can we demand more from our priests and bishops than we are willing to give?

    I pray for the Pope and the bishops every day and I keep hoping that among them there is a Thomas a Beckett who will rise against the culture of the day to uphold and protect the Church. God has done this before. We should not despair. thinking that He will not do it again. The Holy Spirit is capable of far more than we can imagine.


    Liked by 9 people

    1. Yes, JT! This very concept of how our leaders reflect the people came to the fore from Charlie back at TNRS during the lead up to the 2016 election… and this is so for the very reason you express. There is an ongoing beautiful dynamism between a holy shepherd and a holy people when both strive to fully live the Gospel. We lay people can inspire and encourage our shepherds as much as they inspire and encourage us.

      So with you, in thinking and in prayer, for what you name in your second paragraph, JT. My prayer is for many saints, both clerical and lay, to rise from the ashes of what we have collectively wrought that each one of us becomes a living icon of the Ballad of the Ordinary Man.

      Liked by 5 people

    2. And Desmond is correct in saying that “the current milieu took centuries to develop….”. Does anyone doubt the impact that the two World Wars of the last century has had on our current situation? Twice the Christian nations of Europe brutally savaged one another. Besides the astronomical body counts, Europe had its soul shattered, losing hope and courage and having its ability to reason further weakened (which began centuries before with Descartes’ philosophical proposition, “Cogito, ergo sum”.) This “turn to the subject” elevated subjectivity over objectivity and is the progenitor of today’s “dictatorship of relativism”.

      As Mark Steyn has said many times — a people, a culture, a civilization that has lost hope has lost the innate desire to live, to continue to propagate itself. It loses it desire to have children. A marvelous allegory of this phenomenon is found in PD. James’ novel, “The Children of Men”.

      I believe that Desmond is right that this systemic and long-standing situation will only be resolved by a widespread metanoia that can solely be ignited by the movement of the Spirit. Perhaps the spark has already been set — I believe that we are now seeing glimmers of the Holy Spirit’s cleansing fire at work that will eventually turn this present darkness into the Light of Christ.

      Liked by 7 people

      1. Yes, Frank. Amen to the Holy Spirit’s effusion of purifying fire, turning darkness to Light!

        I, too, believe Desmond nailed it and it’s why I asked him for permission to post his thoughts. Many writers have suggested that the onset of this process was the Age of Enlightenment during the “Long 18th Century” when the reorienting of politics, philosophy, communication, technology, etc. began, based on reason while shunning the “superstition” of religion. Our Mother observed these things; she knew the dangers of this path which rejected God. I think it no accident that Our Lady appeared to St. Catherine Labouré in 1830 (And despite all the false alleged visitations and messages, our Mother has, surely and certainly, authentically and prolifically, continued to reach out to us, getting our attention for the sake of our own souls and for the sake of helping her to reach out to the still too many lost souls.) At the Rue du Bac, she demonstrated that she had moved onto the evil one’s turf to protect her precious children by introducing the Miraculous Medal, promising miracles, reminders to an increasingly faithless generation that God is ALIVE and He IS the same yesterday, today and forever. But OH how stiff-necked we humans can be, as the Mass Readings and the Office of Readings in the Divine Office are reminding us during this Lenten Season. As we, repentant stiff-necked ones (OK maybe you’ve never been stiff-necked but I certainly, but not proudly, have been.), make our way through the Exodus of our times, may we ever heed Our Lady’s exhortations to hold fast to our rosaries and focus on her Son in His Eucharistic Presence AND may we heed the exhortations of the prophet who hosts us at this site to balance our fervent and persistent prayers with good works – next right steps – for St. James said it well: What good is it, my brothers and sisters, if someone claims to have faith but has no deeds?

        During the original Exodus, the Israelites were accompanied by God’s Presence in the Pillar of Cloud by day and the Pillar of Fire by night. So, too, in our times, He remains with us in a most profound way in the Blessed Sacrament, both during the day and during the night. And every so often, He graces us with a concrete view, even if but a misty sight of His Great and Glorious Light, such as last summer when Father and I were adoring Him at the Cathedral of the Risen Christ in Lincoln, NE.

        First, I took a pic of the side altar where we had attended Mass and were adoring:

        Then I shifted position to take another shot:

        All Glory to God that we are not alone!

        Liked by 7 people

      2. Interesting you should refer to that Frank. In the last few days, the name of Descartes and his initiation into the philosophical world the concept of total subjectivism [Cogito ergo sum/I think therefore I am.] In both Contemporary and Neoplatonic philosophy – this very subject has come up as the root of the mental/intellectual breakdown in the the former ‘Christendom’ – the inheritor of the Graeco-Roman Culture – refined then by and through 1400 years of Christianity.

        Many of the late Medieval’s strayed from that path in larger or lesser ways. But the break point was Descartes. Most of the worst of the existentialist nihilists of the 20th century claim him as their eldest ancestor [Jean Paul Sarte comes to mind]. Am assisting one of my students with a lengthy paper of the loss of any sense of true freedom in Sarte.

        All of that kind, by the measure of the average normal person when they are exposed to those nihilist notions – conclude that those philosophers are either joking [or putting everyone on] – or – they are man as hatters. Really bad philosophy CAN do that to people. It can result in a self-inflicted form of total divorce from reality – a strong form of diagnosable mental illness [when found in anyone besides wannabe philosophers 🙂

        Liked by 2 people

  21. “Augusto Del Noce is the most important thinker we don’t know. That’s our loss—but it needn’t remain so.” (Francis X. Maier; First Things. ).
    “Del Noce’s use of the word “totalitarian” needs some explanation. He did not mean a society run by bullyboys in jackboots. He was far more worried about a culture addicted to science and technology as the only “real” forms of knowledge; a culture hollowed out and stupefied by the material well-being its tools provide; a culture subject to the resulting philosophy of scientism that renders questions of transcendence irrelevant by confining the human horizon to the here and now.”
    “Del Noce was not a Luddite (someone who resists progress), he welcomed the obvious benefits in new technologies. Like Jacques Maritain, whom he admired, he praised the good in modernity, especially “its attention to the subjective aspect of the apprehension of truth, and thus to freedom; to the form in which truth is welcomed as such.”

    Liked by 3 people

  22. Beckita, I can understand a Bishop of twenty five or thirty years ago who did not understand that homosexual predators cannot be ‘rehabed’ – and then reassigning someone who had gone through ‘rehab’ once to a new parish [in the belief he had been cured]. That is credible, understandable.

    What I can find no rational excuse for, is the reassignment of repeat offenders, allegedly cured by repeated rehab. This is unbelievable, not credible. This happened in too many Dioceses.
    In the particular case of the former Cardinal, now ‘Mr.’, McCarrick, he sent repeat offenders out without any ‘treatment’. He HIMSELF was a malignant predator who tried to force seminarian after seminarian to ‘sleep’ with him. That was his Modus Operandi with all his seminarians.
    That went on for around 35 years in multiple dioceses. Information about his assaults on seminarians began to publicly surface as far back as 1993. It was described as an ‘open secret’ amongst a significant number of the American heirarchy.

    For men such as McCarrick, there can be no credible excuse. I am not speaking about forgiveness here – that we must offer to everyone. What rational excuse for the Bishops who knew and did nothing.

    This lack of credible excuse is especially apropos for those who are resolute in their refusal to admit their guilt, or to apologize, let alone to ask for forgiveness from their victims and their families, and from all the faithful Catholics who have had to deal with the shame he and others like him have unapologetically brought upon our Church. It is also lacking for those who repeated reassigned repeat offenders to new parishes – after obvious repeated failures of rehabilitation.

    I pray for such men. I can make no credible excuses for them – as there are no reasonable excuses available. Forgiveness and prayer, yes. Excuses, no.

    All my love in Christ


    Liked by 7 people

    1. Amen, Desmond. Hate the sin; love the sinner. And hold the offenders to account, thereby, offering protection for teens and young men.

      Sadly, I think the distinction between forgiving and holding to account is an area where Pope Francis has gone awry. Perhaps, in the beginning of “rehabilitating” prelates and priests with homosexual problems, he wasn’t aware of the dangers, yet, we are now years into the knowledge of realizing that repeat offenders shuffled around to new positions only enables these men to hurt themselves and others. In his own words in that infamous speech which then Cardinal McCarrick gave at Villanova, McCarrick spoke of pre-conclave discussions concerning who would make a good Pope for our times and he specifically spoke about then Cardinal Bergoglio as a good choice. ( When I consider what McCarrick said, added to the information which McCarrick’s long-term victim, James Grein, shared about the St. Gallen group, I continue to wonder if Pope Francis’ acceptance of his election in the last conclave placed him squarely beholden to the Lavender Mafia and under duress due to fear of the ugliest of ugly tactics – which you and others have described in previous comments – for which the homosexual mafia is known.

      Prayer, fasting and penance for all.

      Liked by 5 people

      1. I had long ago observed that “Hate the sin, love the sinner” is not as simple as it would first appear. It can be very challenging indeed just how to show love for the dinner without appearing to condone the sin.

        Liked by 3 people

        1. Ha, just…your little typo reminded me of when I was dining with a family who had seven children. I love lively children (probably because I was the oldest of six myself, and the din of a lively group of kids hearkens back to joyful times for me.) I can truly say that, on that occasion, I loved BOTH the dinner and the din!

          Liked by 5 people

        2. JAS, I have the same struggle. I often love(d) sinners conditionally and Bishop Robert Barron really spoke to my heart and sensibilities. “Love is willing the good of another for the other.” I want(ed) the good of the other to appease me! As you can see, I still have not perfected this loving approach, yet.

          Here is a short blog post of how Bishop Barron explains this:

          Liked by 2 people

          1. Internal thoughts of love and wishing the best for all including dinners is the easier part, the external is the more challenging, for example Pope Francis’ “Who am I to judge?”

            Liked by 3 people

            1. There, it slipped it past me again, dinners for siinners. I’m going to have to take it off automatic correction as an aspect of spell check. Sorry for my lack of computer proficiency When I went back and proof read it, it had done it again. Now it is underlining it as a misspell. Apparently it has an aversion to “sinners.”.

              Liked by 4 people

    2. “I pray for such men. I can make no credible excuses for them – as there are no reasonable excuses available. Forgiveness and prayer, yes. Excuses, no.”
      Is it probable that the “intrinsic disorder” found in homosexuals slants all thier other world views as well? Scripture gives the lesson that once we fall away we descend into homosexuality, not the other way round.(Romans 21-22). “Because that, when they knew God, they glorified him not as God, neither were thankful; but became vain in their imaginations, and their [foolish heart was darkened.]
      22 Professing themselves to be wise, [they became fools]”.
      They are not available to excuses but pity as they have proven to us who “see” thier wrongdoings by the condition they have descended into. There is a reason for thier condition which is called “foolish” and therefore they act unreasonable. We, who are still in the light of reason (grace), cannot fathom this because we see something which they cannot, thus the dilemma to reason out why they act this way is actually God’s gift to us to see how, if one falls away from the light of truth, they will descend into an unreasonable, inexcusable condition as a “sign or omen” for those of us who still believe.

      Liked by 2 people

    3. Desmond,

      I see on FB that you said that Theodore McCarrick is living in a monastery (I can’t comment on FB — I can only poke around using my wife’s account). Since Mr. McCarrick has been laicized, isn’t he outside of the jurisdiction of the Church? I don’t see why he is living in a monastery, if he is now a laymen. The only reason I can imagine him being there is because the Church is legally obligated to provide him with a pension plan includes housing. But even if he is in a monastery, I can’t see how the Church can control his movements. While McCarrick is “a priest forever” because of the indelible mark he received in Holy Orders, he is not a member of the clergy in the temporal realm. I don’t see how the Church has any more authority over him than they do over, say, Mick Jagger.

      Can you clear this ups for me? Thanks.

      Liked by 2 people

    4. Desmond,

      The Bishop’s action were preceded by those in the legal justice system. It was an open joke in mid 1960’s California, that criminal offenders would go out from prison, and then go back to back to prison to be rehabilitated. In a Carl Bark’s Uncle Scrooge Story, the House of Haunts from May 1966, at the beginning the Beagles Boys brag about being rehabilitated in Studious Hours prison. At the end of the story, the Judge askes the Beagle Boys how many times they have been rehabilitated, and the Beagles say “Ten times that we can remember judge.” Then the judge says: “Then I sentence you to be re-re-re-re-re-re-re-re-re-re-rehabilitated again!” So, the never ending rehabilitation was already in place.

      Liked by 2 people

  23. Call me paranoid, Charlie, but I sometimes worry that you are “internally shown” things about me. Then you’d realize — but probably not be surprised — that I’m not as holy as I let on here! I’m jesting, of course, but the thought has crossed my mind on more than one occasion. Did such insight help you find good people like Beckita and Steve BC?
    WOMEN’S HEALTH, to add to this topic I’ve been discussing:

    Had an opportunity to REMOVE a Mirena intrauterine device from a woman today, which causes abortion of a fertilized egg, but she declined to have a male student in the room.

    COLLEGE: I have another clinical rotation at a local university health clinic. The patients are generally 18-26 y.o. students mostly Caucasian and female. I’m shadowing an excellent nurse practitioner. She is a Lutheran married to a Catholic man, and they’ve chosen to attend Sunday Mass with their children and raise them Catholic.

    Well, on Tuesday, a female student came in for a birth control refill. The NP handed me her prescription pad to fill out. I said, “I won’t be able to fill that out.” She asked, “Why not?” I said, “For ethical reasons….I’m sorry, I should have explained that better up front.” (I just got over a brutal flu infection, didn’t sleep well, drove 1 hour to this clinic, and it was the first task she threw at me before my coffee had kicked in….I was grouchy).

    Then she opened up, stating that she was a Lutheran and at one point even teared-up saying that this was a “very emotional issue” for her…..and I quietly listened.

    That is what happens when a Christian morally objects to doing something that another Christian is doing themselves. I vaguely stated my reason for not participating in prescribing an oral contraceptive and she correctly assumed that it was because of my (our) faith. And in such a situation, the other Christian feels compelled to respond and justify why they are OK with performing that “unethical” act, although I made no such accusation or demand. Nonetheless, she felt the need to explain her position to me.

    I’ll forgo the content of her brief and articulate monologue, but here was my take-away: She sees her prescribing birth control pills or other methods of contraception as a means of PREVENTING ABORTION. Yes, this is a fallacy in many ways, but that was the thrust of her reasoning. She is doing something “necessary” and “good” in order to prevent a potential evil.

    That is also probably why the other Christian provider at the Women’s Health Clinic said a young girl was “smart” for starting contraception….to prevent abortion (among other reasons).

    South Dakota does not permit this evil act….praise God.

    Anyway, the NP closed her monologue by praising my stand to refuse to write birth control prescriptions and also encouraged me to stick to my guns after I graduate.

    The only other thing I said to her was, “Thank you.”

    Perhaps in the future she will re-examine her stance.

    Liked by 10 people

    1. WOW, Patrick! You are on the front lines and what an outstanding witness you gave.

      Giggling at your opening line. That thought crossed my mind when I read this piece, but then Maria Esperanza read my soul the first time I met her. I knew she was capable, but I didn’t think much about the vulnerability of it all until there we were, heart to soul. That said, how many times a fragile one who knew Maria’s gift of soul-reading would start in about how sorry s/he was for past sins and Maria put an immediate halt to such as that with the reminder that no one is exempt from a sin history. So, here we are, Patrick, all full-fledged members of the repentant sinners club which evokes such gratitude for God’s Mercy so that how could we ever harshly judge another sinner? We’ll just keep confessing and rising, again and again, to love with all we’ve got through the end of our days here in exile and into eternity.

      Liked by 7 people

      1. How little we may have shame for our sins that are in plain view of God, Jesus, and Our Lady even as we commit them, but the thought of another human being seeing our soul like that is downright intimidating and embarrassing! We got it backward!

        What a blessing to have spent time with Servant of God Maria Esperanza! (Saints have a way of finding each other! 😉)

        Liked by 6 people

        1. Ain’t that the truth, Patrick. And, yes, we SIMs do magnetize each other and give support that better evangelizers we become. (SIM = saint-in-the-making)

          Liked by 5 people

      2. Wow Beckita….I had the same vulnerable feeling when I sat across from Fr. Jozo at his Retreat House in Široki Brijeg during lunch one day. Gulp! Please add me to your Repentant Sinners Club!

        Liked by 5 people

        1. Amazing story about Fr. Jozo, Diane. What year(s) were you there? When I visited Široki Brijeg, I was walking a hallway in the retreat house when Fr. Jozo stepped out of a room, saw me, asked my Croatian guide to tell me he wanted to see me in his office and then laid hands, first, on my throat and, then, on my right shoulder while praying in his native tongue. Truly have never exactly discerned what it was about but have pondered on possibilities with Fr. W’s input.

          Liked by 4 people

          1. Since it is said that Fr. Jozo can read souls, that’s an interesting story about you and Fr. Jozo, Beckita. Too bad your Croatian guide wasn’t there to tell you what he was praying about. I’m sure it was important! I was at his retreat in 2002. Sitting across from me at that lunch, he was very serious and not smiling much. In the next two years you might say I greatly cleaned up my act, and ended up with a group being blessed by him in a church in Herzegovina in 2004…..this time when he came down the line to me, he had a huge smile for me and lovingly patted my face as he blessed me. My fellow pilgrims wanted to know what that was all about and I could only guess that he was seeing a different me from two years before. Thank you Dear Lord and Blessed Mother for the good work you continually do in us.

            Liked by 3 people

              1. Dear Beckita, you are the beautiful one. I’m just out here doing my best to improve on a life that I’ve made many mistakes in and continue to do so….but until it’s over I’ve got another chance to do good. Thank you for your kindness always.

                Liked by 2 people

                1. Side by side, we’re all climbing the mountain of holiness, Diane. Besides, we all have secret fears to face and minds and motives to amend. I love saint biographies which reveal how God can draw such good from the lives of those saints who repented and threw themselves wholeheartedly into service for Him and His people.

                  Liked by 2 people

    2. PD, here’s how Charlie ended up picking me:

      One day, Charlie got invited to spend a couple of days with SteveBC and his Mom while touring the country. He arrived, relaxed for a couple days, and then S and his Mum drove Charlie to his next destination. While visiting and relaxing, Charlie saw that S had a lot of free time (being a lazy no-good layabout), so he hatched a plan to make S earn his keep in this world.

      One day, somewhat later, Charlie wrote in a post on TNRS website that he was going to have to gather a little help and would be asking someone to take the lead on developing a TEAM (shudder). He said in that post that he would be contacting this putative leader soon and would not disclose the person’s name at that time.

      Being a no-good layabout with lots of free time, S had the chance to read that post shortly after it came out, and his immediate thought was (truth here), “Wow, some poor sucker is about to have his life turned upside down. Glad it’s not me!”

      30 seconds after saying that, S turned his attention to his email Inbox, and lo and behold, an email from Charlie (who S barely knew at this time) appeared just then. With sinking gut, S found out upon reading that email that HE was the sucker! OMGosh, trouble in Paradise!! Visions of future no-good layabout lazy days in the sun went fluttering like an entire herd of stampeding drunken butterflies out the window open at that time to a lovely cool summer breeze.

      Alas and alack.

      When S later asked Charlie why he picked S for this position, Charlie replied, “You were the only sucker, er, sterling fellow I knew at the time who wasn’t busy.”

      And the rest is, as “they” say, History.

      Liked by 13 people

        1. Diane, the visit did happen. The sentence with “truth here” really did happen, as did the 30-second-later email. All the rest is either vastly overplayed or for entertainment value only. I’m happy you liked my story!

          Charlie and I have always respected and liked each other. I must say that I was surprised when he asked me, since we really had not spent much time together. However, as you and I know, Charlie is willing to bet on people and give them opportunities to excel. That one of those bets happened to be on me is something I consider a great compliment.

          That he also bet on Beckita isn’t just a compliment to her, but also inspired. I may contribute the occasional funny story, but she holds this community together in ways even Charlie could not. We are most fortunate to have her with us, and yes, Beckita, this is a compliment to you, much deserved. In the midst of the turbulent wake of my stampeding butterflies story, I don’t want that to be missed by anyone. 🙂

          Liked by 5 people

          1. Awww, Steve. Thank you for your never-ending kindness. God bless you in all the dimensions of His Wonders that He infused in your being when He created you. And, truly, God bless each one in this glorious community, each with wondrous gifts and talents, particularly and precisely chosen when God created each of us that we be suited to man a particular post in this great Storm and Rescue. May we ever walk, shoulder to shoulder, sometimes lifting up another and sometimes being lifted as we build the Civilization of Love God yearns to bestow upon us if we but answer His call to co-create.

            Liked by 4 people

          2. Ha Steve, I do believe the most important parts of your story…..just not the exaggeration parts…although you have a way with humor that I greatly like! and I agree that dear Beckita and you and Mick and all those other people involved in keeping this wonderful site going are all worth your weight in gold. Charlie sure knows how to pick ’em!!! And thank you Steve for your awesome technical expertise after word press threw a fast ball at me! 🙂

            Liked by 3 people

      1. Actually, I knew from the start that Steve had chops – and some in important areas where I didn’t. I also knew that, like many brilliant people I know, he could get so single-mindedly focused he would occasionally lose sight of the big picture. I suspected that, because of this, sometimes he was not fully and properly valued. But I knew what incredible value he had – and I knew if he got single-mindedly focused on something, I could just tell him. And he was so good at what he does, I trusted that he would be able to tell me when I lost sight of the big picture because of my occasional single-minded focus. That was my actual thinking at the time. I value people with skills and guts. And I know how to work with them.

        Liked by 7 people

        1. Charlie, thank you for the kind words. I hope you were entertained by my explanation. 🙂

          Certainly my time spent here with you and other members of the NRS Team and so many truly fine people in our community has taught me much, stretched me often, and brought me many benefits in return for all those lost butterflies. I’m a better man as a result, and I thank you for your willingness to invite me to participate these past four years.

          In fact, though, my participation has often been overshadowed by the contributions of other members of our Team and by heart-warming and brilliant comments from so many others. And when I have asked for prayers for my mother or members of my family, many here have provided them without stint.

          Of course, Patrick Daniel, you and I particularly acknowledge Beckita, who every one of us knows has contributed so much. Should Beckita decide to go butterfly collecting, we would all miss her presence in so many ways. 🙂

          Liked by 6 people

      2. “…no-good layabout lazy days in the sun went fluttering like an entire herd of stampeding drunken butterflies out the window open at that time to a lovely cool summer breeze…”

        Hymm… though true, the above plus duties may be completed on a beach, anywhere in the World via a laptop, VPN, and air-card (cellular, SAT) if WiFi unavailable.

        Liked by 3 people

        1. Sean, you are so right, and I have been re-collecting one or two of those butterflies every now and then since that moment! 😀

          Liked by 3 people

      3. I just love it that you stretched your literary style legs here, SteveBC. “Alas and alack.” Ha! Folks here, often surprising and new, have so much more dimension than they let on. Charlie used the term “farthing” earlier to good effect, but he’s just as likely to drop consult-the-dictionary-terminology as he is to use an “I reckon.” Even B with her often substantial and melodious compositions isn’t above dropping a well-placed “ain’t.” The mashie niblick is the go-to in my bag, but golfers ought to have a certain proficiency from spoon to niblick if they want to conquer the course. The habitually expressive ones, at any rate.

        Liked by 5 people

        1. And I, MP, am impressed with your reference to the ancient Niblick. I haven’t heard that one for a while, since I used to play golf in my increasingly long ago childhood. 🙂

          Liked by 3 people

    3. Well done, PD. Even though you might have felt some discomfort with your colleague, you can live with your decision with your head held high.

      One fact revealed in the movie “Unplanned” is that contraceptives (including IUDs) fail to prevent pregnancy a surprising percentage of the time. (Sorry, I can’t give you the exact figures just now.) For decades now, people have been deceived into thinking that “being responsible” when they’re sexually active but “not ready” to have children means using birth control; thus, when pregnancy occurs anyway (and it often does), the next logical step is abortion.

      I say again, Patrick, and I stand with you: Calmly stand your ground.

      God bless and keep you.

      Liked by 6 people

      1. Thanks, Marie. Actually, I’m so comfortable with this NP, there wasn’t a moment of awkwardness.

        She did mention that one of my instructors and site evaluators is a Catholic and that she, too, practices without prescribing OCPs. I plan to talk with her about how I can survive in this hostile healthcare world without compromising my integrity or Christian beliefs in practice.

        👍 Ah, here is an interesting one: We had a young female come to the Women’s clinic. She has a condition called Factor V Leiden, a congenital blood clotting disorder. She also has a history of both deep vein thrombi (DVT) and a pulmonary embolism (PE). Therefore, she is not eligible for oral contraceptives or hormone-releasing devices like the Mirena as these increase a woman’s risk of throwing a clot (having a stroke). SOOOOO….we talked to her about NATURAL FAMILY PLANNING. We discussed how straight-forward it is, how it’s been used for thousands of years, and the basics on how to do it. That was enjoyable for me! 😁

        Why are we not recommending this natural option more? The birth control pill implies that women are too stupid to use this simple method, or that humans are utterly incapable of not having sex for 4 days out of the month. Oral contraceptives carry significant short-term and long-term risks that are not adequately discussed in most physician offices. Hmfph!

        Again, I hold fast to the hope that abortion and contraception will eventually become a tragedy — a holocaust — of the past.

        Thanks for the encouragement, Marie!

        Liked by 6 people

        1. Patrick Daniel: “Why are we not recommending this natural option more?”

          One reason is that Big Pharma would lose a lot of money and pushes the idea that natural options are ineffective.

          Liked by 3 people

    4. 😔 CORRECTION: South Dakota does permit abortion because of the Roe v Wade ruling. Abortion would be banned if this were to be overturned. Fortunately, it is a relatively uncommon practice.

      There are 2 providers of abortion in the state.

      Regarding consent laws for those under 18: The state requires that one of your parents be told of your decision 48 hours before the abortion, but a judge can excuse you from this requirement.😔

      Liked by 5 people

  24. NEWS & MILINET: Articles for Christians 5/6 April
    Prayers For President Trump During West Coast Travel…

    Catholic cardinal calls mass migration ‘a new form of slavery,’ says Bible shouldn’t be used to promote it

    Canadian tribunal fines Bill Whatcott $55,000 for expressing Christian views on “transgenderism”

    Mormon Church reverses policy against children of gay parents

    Is Vatican II Irrelevant Now?

    Jordan Peterson Unpacks What Drives the Left and How to Restore Meaning

    Democrats Have To Decide Whether Faith Is An Asset For 2020

    Court upholds Kentucky’s abortion law requiring ultrasounds

    Democrat Congresswoman Tired of Republicans Trying to Stop Infanticide: “Oh My God, They Just Will Not Quit”

    Southern Poverty Law Center is Punished for the Wrong Crimes

    Bozell Signs Letters Demanding Media, Social CEOs Abandon Hate-Filled, Anti-Christian, Anti-Conservative SPLC

    WATCH: Protester Jumps on Stage at LSU to Disrupt Charlie Kirk and Candace Owens’ TPUSA Speech

    Maryland’s ‘Red Flag’ Law Turns Deadly: Officer Kills Man Who Refused To Turn In Gun

    61-Year-Old Woman Gives Birth To Own Granddaughter For Gay Son Using His Husband’s Sister’s Egg

    Shadow Government: Barack Obama Arrives in Berlin to Meet With Angela Merkel in Private

    The Real Fascists: House Democrats Want Oversight Over FOX News

    BREAKING: Russian Historian Svetlana Lokhova Breaks Silence – Says Deep State FBI and Stephan Halper Set Up Gen. Flynn (VIDEO)

    GOP Senators Alert Barr to Allegations Mueller’s Team Misrepresented Trump Campaign Emails to Fuel Russian Collusion Conspiracy Theories

    Grassley: Democrats Are Using IRS For Political Purposes, ‘Nixonian’ Tactics

    Amazon Ditches Seattle As Business Tax Threats And Homeless Epidemic Reach Peak Liberal

    Doctors Are Now Giving 8-Year-Old Girls Testosterone, Claiming They’re ‘Transgender’


    Liked by 4 people

  25. “There is such a thing as settled science, though not nearly as much as the ignorant want to think. The scientific method is one of the noblest tools at our disposal for finding truth – and is slowly pushing back the boundaries of ignorance of the natural world. There is such a thing as settled doctrine. It is not as extensive as the advocates of a harsh asceticism want to think – but a LOT more than modern enemies of faith, both in and out of clerical robes, acknowledge.”
    ——-Charlie Johnston

    “There are more things in heaven and earth (science), Horatio,
    Than are dreamt of in your philosophy.
    ——–William Shakespeare Hamlet to Horatio

    It’s funny how dots start coming together for me. Settled Science vs Settled Religion.

    The temptation here is to view this relationship as either or polar opposites. The false premise is the vs. It’s not vs.

    I have run into the term COGNITION a lot lately. Beginning with the idea of Cognitive Dissonance. Cognitive Dissonance is a condition that occurs when we attempt to hold two inconsistent thoughts or cognitions in our minds at the same time. Classic example: I am a Communist. I am a Catholic.

    Problem with these two inconsistent cognitions: From the Communist point of view you cannot be a good authentic atheist Communist and be a Catholic God Fearer at the same time. From the Catholic point of view you cannot be a God Fearer and a God Denier at the same time.

    If you try to hold these two inconsistent thoughts in your head simultaneously it causes great distress leading to duress and depression and anxiety and spiritual angst and physical effects. Cognitive Dissonance sickens you. Inevitably, in response to the distress of Cognitive Dissonance a person seeks to resolve the inconsistency in some way shape or form.

    So how do we live, survive or thrive is a world increasingly dominated by myriad forms of Cognitive Dissonance in our lives from social, to family, to political, to spiritual, to Church, to economic and even scientific Cognitive Dissonance? How do we keep from going crazy? How does society keep from killing itself to make distressing thoughts cease to torture us? More importantly, how do we resolve our own personal case of Cognitive Dissonance (we are all afflicted).

    One of the coping mechanisms the human body has to deal with the stress of Cognitive Dissonance in our lives is to react with denial or to block incoming physical evidence or intellectual cognitions which conflict with our most cherished beliefs. In other words we refuse to believe our own eyes. We can’t even hear opposing ideas or disturbing thoughts. We blot things out to protect disturbing distressing cognitions from entering our brains. Our senses are distrusted or turned off. We are tuned in mainly to Confirmation Bias. Physical evidence or data or thoughts which confirm what we already believe from our upbringing and training and what the nuns taught us. If it confirms what we learned on Mom’s knee or in our community or at school then we are strengthened in our bias and it is quite reassuring bringing some sense of peace and well being. For good or ill. We watch FOX or CNN but probably not both.

    “Belief System
    It is the mind believing in a reality regardless of outside facts, questions, or influence. If a person believes the sky is orange than they will appear truthful.”

    People are selling us stuff all the time. Some believe what they are selling is authentic and truthful. Some are being deceptive. Sometimes it is hard to know which is which. How do we trust incoming data? How do we deal with an uncomfortable reality that conflicts with long held cherished beliefs?

    I came across an interesting Book Review in the Wall St Journal this morning. The book is ‘How to Think Like a Roman Emperor’. The hook that got me thinking is the author is a Cognitive Behavioral Psychotherapist. There’s that word again.

    “Marcus Aurelius is famous for his practice of Stoic philosophy. It would come in handy when one of his generals declared himself emperor.

    …Emperor from 161 to 180, Marcus is remembered not merely for his long reign but for his practice of Stoicism—a school of philosophy founded in Athens by Zeno of Citium around 300 B.C. Stoicism counsels its adherents not to place too much importance on things outside their control. Rather than fret about the frustrations of our daily lives, the Stoics advise, it is better to bring one’s will in accord with nature and approach the present moment with composure.

    It’s a mind-set that comes in handy when a rebel army threatens your throne. Marcus’ “Meditations,” essentially his personal journals, were largely written while he was on campaign amid various military engagements, and are today considered Stoic scripture. In “How to Think Like a Roman Emperor,” Mr. Robertson, a cognitive-behavioral psychotherapist, shows how Marcus’ example can be of use to the rest of us. Marcus’ worldview was not an idle intellectual exercise, he argues, but a form of wisdom forged by real-world experiences of friendship, loss and crisis……

    As part of a long-term succession arrangement, Marcus had been adopted as the son of the emperor Antoninus, who himself had been adopted by his own predecessor, Hadrian. In Marcus’ adoptive father and grandfather, Mr. Robertson finds two vastly different influences on the budding Stoic. Historians, he notes, portray Antoninus as humble and even-tempered, a man whose example Marcus sought to emulate. Hadrian, by contrast, was quick to anger and paranoid. His “growing suspicion, intolerance, and persecution of his supposed enemies,” Mr. Robertson writes, were “completely at odds with Marcus’s values.” Rebuking Hadrian’s example, Marcus made a point during his reign “of allowing his political opponents to go unpunished when they publicly ridiculed or criticized him,” whereas Hadrian “would have had them banished or beheaded.”

    As he shares fragments from Marcus’ life, Mr. Robertson distills the emperor’s philosophy into useful mental habits—the core lessons of “How to Think Like a Roman Emperor” are more behavioral than historical. He recommends “undertaking any action while calmly accepting that the outcome isn’t entirely under your control.” He also discusses the benefits of anticipating adversity and preparing to meet both success and failure, which “can help you avoid feeling angry, surprised, or frustrated when events don’t turn out as you might have wished.” Envisioning undesired scenarios in advance of any pursuit can provide mental armor that comes in handy when things inevitably don’t go exactly as we had hoped.

    Think of Marcus on the eve of the march against Cassius. Imagining his mind-set as he prepared to address his troops, Mr. Robertson writes that the emperor reminds “himself, as always, that he must be ready to accept meddling, ingratitude, violence, treachery, and envy.” He tells the soldiers that “there’s no point . . . feeling bitter about the rebellion in the east” and “assures them of his heartfelt regret that they must be engaged in war after war in his service.”

    In the end, a drawn-out war would be unnecessary, as Cassius would be killed by his own soldiers while Marcus’ army marched southeast to meet him—but not before the emperor made an impression on his own men with “the calm demeanor with which he faces adversity—even this, the greatest in a series of betrayals.”

    Some kind of Stoicism in the face of a world full of Cognitive Dissonance and the confusion and discomfort and distress and chaos and even violence to resolve the pain of trying to maintain and resolve inconsistent thoughts at war with themselves in the world seems like a pretty good defense mechanism to maintain one’s own personal sanity and perhaps more broadly in society at large.

    Keep calm and carry on.

    Let’s bring it a little closer to home.

    How do we engage and deal with the Cognitive Dissonance in our own lives?

    A little Charlie Johnston brand of keeping calm and carrying on Christian Stoicism. Acknowledge God, Take the Next Right Step and be a sign of Hope for others. Play your position as well as you can.

    Liked by 5 people

  26. Gospel reading for today, Saturday, 4th week of Lent:
    7:45 So the guards went to the chief priests and Pharisees, who asked them, “Why did you not bring him?” 7:46 The guards answered, “Never before has anyone spoken like this man.”…

    Cardinal Sarah, Future Pope of the Catholic Church
    “As a bishop, it is my duty to warn the West”: An interview with Cardinal Sarah….

    Liked by 5 people

      1. I too loved that choir. When I was singing with the Sweet Adeline’s Barbershop Chorus in northern Minnesota, we used to sing that beautiful song. It brought back wonderful memories.

        Liked by 5 people

      2. Yes…. A kind priest paid for Mark Mallett The reader s, will receive the fruit of marks journey.
        Regarding the $80,000 spent on C. d s ….. This is for every one to gain…, not for Mark personally. he is using his gifts and talents the best he can for all.
        Mark has thousands of readers….. thousands…. Yet in his January call for support he received from 100 people!! We do not know everyone’s circumstances… But 100 responses’!!!
        I believe he gives his all. Open our hearts and do what we can.
        Let’s be positive and help each other.
        I found Marks latest article very interesting. I believe Cardinal Sarah’s interview does reflect what the Holy Spirit has spoken through Mark! It is a Warning to all of us.

        Liked by 3 people

  27. Here’s one to add to crewdogs lists.
    [audio src="" /]
    It was found at April 7 maked Flashback: what a sermon
    It explains the cover-up/agenda and the priest talks from personal experience of being in a seminary in the 80″s.

    Liked by 2 people

  28. Gosh Diane…. a colleague who just retired sang with the Sweet Adelines here. They haVe been to a few countries and won medal. I think they were in usa 2 or so years ago ….. Can’t remember where.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. My Lambzie also sang with the Sweet Adelines. It is so beautiful to hear these ladies sing four part harmony acapella. Kinda like watching wild Mustangs in the desert. In case you are wondering, they have nothing to do with each other, other than they both expresse a bit of God’s beauty.

      Liked by 6 people

      1. Really Doug? That’s terrific! What part did Lambzie sing? I was a Lead. I have an old scrapbook filled with pictures from my Sweet Adeline days. How I loved those talented ladies! I was in Northern Minnesota at the time.

        Liked by 2 people

          1. I send my love and best wishes to a fellow Lead! I’m sure she does miss it, as do I. We moved out of the area and I wasn’t able to find another Sweet Adeline Chapter close enough to join. I treasure the memories as I’m sure your Lambzie does!

            Liked by 2 people

    2. Oh Anne, that’s wonderful. I have met many Sweet Adelines from around this country and attended many conventions but all in the U.S. It’s an awesome organization! I’m sorry but I can’t remember where you’re located?

      Liked by 2 people

      1. Australia. Down under. Yes…. I have heard them sing…. So good. I think they went to los Vegas.


  29. NEWS & MILINET : Articles for Christians – 7April
    The Fifth Sunday Of Lent 2019

    Emails show Planned Parenthood behind California rule to make churches pay for abortions

    Born Alive Bill Will Be Major 2020 Issue


    The Most Thinly Disguised Anti-Semitism

    Belarus officials demolish crosses placed in memory of Stalin’s Soviet terror victims

    Mormon leaders talk spirituality, not changes, at conference

    Stimulating Simulations: Evidence for God, Not Hackers

    There Is No ‘God Problem’: Part I

    On Joe McCarthy, Washington Post Gets It Embarrassingly Wrong–Jack Cashill

    The Left Wants More Government Because of Their Irresponsible Behavior

    Democrat Presidential Conference Opens with Communist Cop-Killer’s Chants

    Cue The Outrage: Trump Mocks Ilhan Omar At A Republican Jewish Coalition Event And Liberals Are Triggered

    Swastika-Clad Protesters Interrupt Trump Speech to Jewish Republicans

    Watch: Civil Rights Leader Unleashes on 2020 Dems, Al Sharpton for Reparations Support

    Democrats Kiss The Ring Of Al Sharpton

    The intolerant Left thirsts for blood


    Obama’s in Berlin subtly bashing the President and supporters


    Hey Liberals, On Media Bias, Please Remove the Plank from Your Own Eye



    One truthful Democrat emerges to call out party’s ‘delusions’

    Award for Mike Pompeo mysteriously rescinded, proves our politics just hit a new low–Marc Thiessen


    Pompeo says he is ‘confident’ 3rd US-NK summit will happen

    No summit with China’s Xi Jinping until a deal to end trade war is final, Donald Trump says

    Navy Amphib Sails Through South China Sea with a Bunch of F-35s Aboard

    Feds warn: China sending ‘thousands’ of spies to US colleges

    First, This Marine Was The Victim of Road Rage. Then, He Was The Victim Of Red Flag Laws.

    Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez: ‘What We Need to Do is Have a Serious Conversation’ About Cow Flatulence

    Anti-government protests spread across the Balkans


    Venezuelans rally to demand power, water and end to Maduro

    Where not even graves are safe

    Hillary’s email server a ‘serious’ problem, 74% of Americans say in new poll. Even 73% of Democrats agreed


    Liked by 3 people

  30. sharing the news about the latest book of Cardinal Robert Sarah,
    “Le soir approach et déjà le soir baisse” (“It is nearly evening and the day is almost over”) is the third book in his Trilogy.

    The English edition, “The Day is Now Far Spent”, expected to be released on September 1, 2019, can now be pre-ordered from Ignatius Press
    on-line with a discount.

    In the opening paragraph of his new book, he writes, “I can not longer remain silent. I may no longer remain silent”.
    In his exclusive interview with the French magazine, La Nef, the author of God or Nothing and The Power of Silence, says,
    “as a Bishop, it is my duty to warn the West”. (Excerpt below from the interview).

    Also scroll down for other sites, including the Le Nef interview with the title “Un monde reconstruire” (a world to rebuild).


    In the first part of your book, you describe “a spiritual and religious collapse.” How does this collapse manifest itself? Does it only affect the West or are other regions of the world, such as Africa, also affected by it?

    The spiritual crisis involves the entire world. But its source is in Europe. People in the West are guilty of rejecting God. They have not only rejected God. Friedrich Nietzsche, who may be considered the spokesman of the West, has claimed: “God is dead! God remains dead! And we have killed him…” We have murdered God. In view of God’s death among men, Nietzsche would replace him with a prophetic “Superman.”

    The spiritual collapse thus has a very Western character. In particular, I would like to emphasize the rejection of fatherhood. Our contemporaries are convinced that, in order to be free, one must not depend on anybody. There is a tragic error in this. Western people are convinced that receiving is contrary to the dignity of human persons. But civilized man is fundamentally an heir, he receives a history, a culture, a language, a name, a family. This is what distinguishes him from the barbarian. To refuse to be inscribed within a network of dependence, heritage, and filiation condemns us to go back naked into the jungle of a competitive economy left to its own devices. Because he refuses to acknowledge himself as an heir, man is condemned to the hell of liberal globalization in which individual interests confront one another without any law to govern them besides profit at any price.

    In this book, however, I want to suggest to Western people that the real cause of this refusal to claim their inheritance and this refusal of fatherhood is the rejection of God. From Him we receive our nature as man and woman. This is intolerable to modern minds. Gender ideology is a Luciferian refusal to receive a sexual nature from God. Thus some rebel against God and pointlessly mutilate themselves in order to change their sex. But in reality they do not fundamentally change anything of their structure as man or woman. The West refuses to receive, and will accept only what it constructs for itself. Trans-humanism is the ultimate avatar of this movement. Because it is a gift from God, human nature itself becomes unbearable for western man.

    This revolt is spiritual at root. It is the revolt of Satan against the gift of grace. Fundamentally, I believe that Western man refuses to be saved by God’s mercy. He refuses to receive salvation, wanting to build it for himself. The “fundamental values” promoted by the UN are based on a rejection of God that I compare with the rich young man in the Gospel. God has looked upon the West and has loved it because it has done wonderful things. He invited it to go further, but the West turned back. It preferred the kind of riches that it owed only to itself.

    In the conclusion of my book, I speak about a poison from which are all suffering: a virulent atheism. It permeates everything, even our ecclesiastical discourse. It consists in allowing radically pagan and worldly modes of thinking or living to coexist side by side with faith. And we are quite content with this unnatural cohabitation! This shows that our faith has become diluted and inconsistent! The first reform we need is in our hearts. We must no longer compromise with lies. The Faith is both the treasure we have to defend and the power that will permit us to defend it.
    He goes on:
    First I would like to explain why I, a son of Africa, allow myself to address the West. The Church is the guardian of civilization. I am convinced that western civilization is passing at present through a mortal crisis. It has reached the extreme of self-destructive hate. As during the fall of Rome, elites are only concerned to increase the luxury of their daily life and the peoples are being anesthetized by ever more vulgar entertainment. As a bishop, it is my duty to warn the West! The barbarians are already inside the city. The barbarians are all those who hate human nature, all those who trample upon the sense of the sacred, all those who do not value life, all those who rebel against God the Creator of man and nature. The West is blinded by science, technology, and the thirst for riches. The lure of riches, which liberalism spreads in hearts, has sedated the peoples. At the same time, the silent tragedy of abortion and euthanasia continue and pornography and gender ideology destroy children and adolescents. We are accustomed to barbarism. It doesn’t even surprise us anymore! I want to raise a cry of alarm, which is also a cry of love. I do so with a heart full of filial gratitude for the Western missionaries who died in my land of Africa and who communicated to me the precious gift of faith in Jesus Christ. I want to follow their lead and receive their inheritance!
    How could I not emphasize the threat posed by Islamism? Muslims despise the atheistic West. They take refuge in Islamism as a rejection of the consumer society that is offered to them as a religion. Can the West present them the Faith in a clear way? For that it will have to rediscover its Christian roots and identity. To the countries of the third world, the West is held out as a paradise because it is ruled by commercial liberalism. This encourages the flow of migrants, so tragic for the identity of peoples.
    A West that denies its faith, its history, its roots, and its identity is destined for contempt, for death, and disappearance.
    But I would like to point out that everything is prepared for a renewal. I see families, monasteries, and parishes that are like oases in the middle of a desert. It is from these oases of faith, liturgy, beauty, and silence that the West will be reborn.
    Read the whole thing.
    See original French interview with auto translation here:

    See also:

    Liked by 5 people

    1. Thank you, San San. It might be a little cognitive dissonance I’m experiencing or maybe just a God-incidence, but wasn’t the title of one of Cdl Sarah’s not too distant books something about Silence? I believe this Silence was in reference to reverence and not to cover ups. I am relieved that he has chosen to no longer remain silent. God be praised!

      Liked by 4 people

  31. CJ, I appreciate your optimism, however, Watch “The Vortex — Revolting Choice” on YouTube

    Thoughts? 🤔🙏🏼 God Bless you and your ministry, I’ll remember all of you at Holy Mass today.

    Liked by 3 people

    1. Tell me, what choice that Pope Francis would make would not be a revolting choice? Does anyone think he is suddenly going to start appointing orthodox defenders of the faith? Even so, I still do not like writing headlines that only need the name filled in in the blank. I still like to consider the fullness of the person involved to the best of my ability. I will not argue that Archbishop Gregory is a stanch defender of the faith. I will maintain that despite his frailty, he is not an enemy of the faith as so many recent appointees are.

      Thanks for remembering us at Mass today.

      Liked by 3 people

    2. Hi Bob. Nice to see you again and thanks so much for your prayers at Mass. I’ll include a link here which has the written version of the video you’ve shared. For many, it’s easier and less time consuming to read the news rather than viewing and listening. Charlie’s well read on developments, both secular and in the Church so I expect he’s seen Michael Voris’ take and more about the new appointment.

      Charlie has actually shared a lot about his view concerning Archbishop Gregory’s appointment, writing from the experiences of his actual encounters with the Archbishop and, also, CJ has shared excellent insights as well. In gentleness, I remind us all that reading through comments here is worthy for gaining more understanding as the posts and related topics are discussed. In this current piece posted, part three of these short takes gives a good summation of Charlie’s opinion based on personally observing Archbishop Gregory in action. Further, Charlie has shared an incredible light concerning the Archbishop’s potential should he respond to the Plan and grace God has for him. In the comments Charlie has said:

      Added to the direct comments about Archbishop Gregory, Charlie also suggested this concerning the Holy Father’s influence which, I think, is pertinent to considering Archbishop Gregory’s appointment: “I know that if we had had a notably orthodox Pope, the predators would still be in hiding. Pope Francis has convinced them it is okay to come out. I don’t think that was his intention, but that is the result. God rarely, if ever, works in the straight-line narrative so many want to impose on him. Much of the big-picture-end-game will be a surprise to me…and it certainly will be to you. That is why I so emphasize simple faith and fidelity, without neglecting to discuss real problems.”

      Looking at the bigger picture, we have the hierarchy that we have. It seems many prelates and priests have made mistakes and/or deliberately covered up in one way or another and/or have been or are actively homosexual. (And these problems are a reflection of the state of the laity from whose ranks these men were called by Christ to be priests.) Further, this is only one aspect of the loss of faith which has afflicted, not only the clergy, but us ALL to greater or lesser degrees. Given this reality, it surely seems that the pool for selecting an orthodox Bishop for an open see who has an un-compromised record is slim. It’s a mess all right. No Bishop has the legitimate authority to discipline a brother Bishop; only the Pope has such authority. And no one, absolutely no one, in the whole Church has authority over the Pope. HE has the Supreme Authority.

      Honestly, when Charlie wrote so long ago that he would experience a time where he would be tempted to lose hope, I can see where this temptation will come to us all and the current state of the Church is a mighty temptation to lose hope and dwell on hopelessness, which becomes an entry point for the evil one to tempt people to abandon ship. Yet, we’ve GOT to TRUST in God’s Plan. We’ve lived this kind of misery in cycles since Christ established His Church and, actually, throughout all salvation history.

      Again, today, the Father in Heaven is disciplining us, allowing us to experience the consequences of abandoning the Covenant He made with us. Just as He has, throughout the ages, rescued us with surprising interventions, so He will again guide us through reforming the disorder we have wrought. We already have g.r.e.a.t. power – the Power of His Holy Spirit – to participate in the renewal. We CAN live the holiness of a life firmly established in prayer (including the prayer of doing which TNRS embodies), fasting and penance which redounds to holiness in every corner of the world as all the while we remain hidden in the bosom of the Church, right where we are. And OH! The power of the hidden way is glorious and beautiful.

      Liked by 5 people

  32. Everybody, I remembered you and yours and your intentions at the holy and divine Divine Liturgy today, with especially attention to what Linda and Desmond wrote about, their own issues.

    May Lent continue to be fruitful for all!

    Liked by 8 people

  33. As I watched this, I could not help but wonder what kind of “Red (& Lavender) Thread” (The Administrative State) has infiltrated Our Church since WWII ….. am I the only guy here who was lead to believe that Pope Benedict was near death six+ years ago… and why he stepped down … but still living @ Vatican …… ’cause he wanted it that way!!!??? or could it be that “The Wolves” took him out? …. & wanted to keep him close @ Vatican ….. we may never know …. in this Life.

    Diana West Discusses The Red Thread – Why Did The Administrative State Target Donald Trump?…


    Liked by 6 people

  34. dear friends, TNRS-ers, and squirrels……hope I haven’t left anyone out. To begin – I am so grateful for all of you, even those with whom I may not agree. I especially appreciate the prayers. I have decided to do a sort-of retreat. I am going to disconnect my TV and computer and turn off my phone starting on Palm Sunday and not reconnect until after easter. I will pray and listen for God when I would have otherwise been distracted/entertained. I am going to be quiet. Please join me if you feel so led. I will be praying for all and whatever needs you may have. Pax Christi to everyone.

    Liked by 6 people

  35. I found Charlies commentary on Bishop Gregory so full of hope! Thank you Charlie for telling us your experience and I am 100% behind you on this. I look forward to seeing the end result of Bishop Gregory”s tenure in Washington DC.Praise be to God.

    Liked by 4 people

    1. Agree with you, Noreen. And it is a time to pray and offer sacrifice for Archbishop Gregory so that he can live up to what he has promised as reported here from the Catholic News Agency.

      Liked by 5 people

  36. HeartLight Daily Verse – 8 April

    Romans 5:10
    If, when we were God’s enemies, we were reconciled to him through the death of his Son, how much more, having been reconciled, shall we be saved through his life.
    Thoughts on today’s verse :Jesus didn’t just die for my sins, he lives for me. In fact, he is at God’s right hand claiming me as his own (see 1 John 2:1-2). If he was willing to die to save me, what will he withhold now that he lives victorious over death?
    Holy and Righteous Father, I thank you for Jesus, who is at your side and knows my heart, struggles, and world. I thank you for your constant care and protection through all of my difficulties and triumphs. Please make your presence known more clearly today than ever before as I try to serve you with wholehearted devotion. Through Jesus I pray. Amen.
    Visit for more

    NEWS & MILINET:Articles for Christians – 8 April
    THE HIVE – This is how it works.


    Yale Law School policy may discriminate against Christian groups, Sen. Ted Cruz says

    In Academia as in Government, Personnel Is Policy

    How Socialists Will Usher In a New Hell on Earth

    WATCH: CBS Cameras Cut Away the Moment Texas Tech Starts Praying

    Stacey Abrams: Georgia Fetal Heartbeat Bill Is ‘Evil’



    Pollak: ‘Mayor Pete’ Buttigieg and Liberal Religious Bigotry

    Buttigieg: ‘Hypocrisy’ of Evangelicals Supporting Trump Is ‘Unbelievable’

    Australia’s Catholic Population Drops 2.7% in Five Years

    Australian Air Force Pilots Told: Consider ‘Gendered Social Roles’ During Bombing Operations

    Missing in America Project buries 42 ‘unclaimed’ veterans in Texas and Florida

    On abortion, the judicial ‘umpires’ picked a team

    Bombshell: House Intelligence Is Going After ‘Intelligence Leakers’ And Conspiracy Pushers

    Tom Fitton — Spygate “The Worst Corruption Scandal in American History”

    Trump hits another one out of the park in naming Herman Cain to Fed board–Monica Showalter

    The Tea Party is back!–Lloyd Marcus

    You Can’t Put America First Until Washington’s Foreign Bribery Industry Has Been Shut Down

    CDC Study: Violence Against Older Adults Is Rising And An ‘Underreported Public Health Problem’

    Watch: Kim Foxx Remains Silent as Supporter Calls Chicago Police ‘Blue Klux Klan’

    Not Fresh Air: NPR , NY Times Can’t Find Failed Socialism in Venezuela

    Bill de Blasio goes full-blown socialist, says America needs ‘actual redistribution’ of wealth

    Far-left pundit Paul Krugman: ‘Deranged and irrational’ President Trump ‘is trying to kill you’

    UK: Paedophile Illegal Migrant Killed Christian Convert Wife After Visa Row

    Khan’s London: Average of 40 Knife Crimes Every Day

    Ireland Launches Police Hijab, Claims ‘Diversity’ Deficit a ‘Time-bomb’ Making Migrants ‘Radicalise’

    France Admits There Is ‘Real Collusion’ Between People-smugglers and Migrant ‘Rescue’ NGOs

    Judge Apologises for Freeing Migrant Who Killed Italian for Being ‘Happy and White’

    New Zealand official calls Facebook ‘morally bankrupt pathological liars’


    Liked by 4 people

  37. Have you heard of this lady? Wowsers! She should run for office. It’s always fun to hear someone with whom you agree!

    Liked by 1 person

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