By Charlie Johnston
We have just started our Easter quarterly fundraising appeal. Yeah, I know, I hate these things, too. But at CORAC we charge for nothing while offering a ton of services and activities – and we have to get the money somewhere to keep things afloat. In a little over a week, I will be working at designing and manufacturing the Brazen Serpent Prayer Cards to help those who are suffering vaccine remorse and, soon enough, vaccine panic. We will need about $10,000 for the initial order of those to give away. We are also now designing one-panel double-sided cards on how to deal with various emergency situations: loss of utilities, how to forage for food, identifying and purifying water supplies and more. They will be easy to pack up and carry with you. We are putting together a clearing house of employers and skilled employees who did not take the Covid shot for easy access to those who lost their jobs or just want to work for a company that values freedom and fundamental human rights. We are presenting on-line catechism classes each week, led by the noted eschatologist, Desmond Birch. Our prayer teams are putting a prayer-in-action initiative to connect people who have loved ones that are far from home and isolated with people who live in those areas so that we better care for each other and make stronger the bonds between all of us – and give distant relatives some peace of mind.
Besides all that, we continue to run the homeopathy classes for all, we are running new sustainability classes in gardening and preparing solar array instruction videos, expanding our ham radio network across the nation, and building a system where people can set up home school consortiums across the country. And with all of this, we still keep our monthly nut at just around $10,000. I know that the Biden economy is taking a big toll on all of us – but we continue to be responsible and frugal…and give all who come an opportunity to work together to make their families and communities stronger. Please give us the biggest donation you can today. You can donate online or send a check to: CORAC, 18208 Preston Rd., Ste. D9-552, Dallas, Texas 75252. If you are put off at all by that “suite” number, go to the office and you will find it is a FedEx Mail Delivery service. We do a lot, but we are what we called down south a “cornbread and butterbeans” operation. We are the opposite of the government, which takes a lot from you and only gives you a little. Our way is to ask a little of you and give you a lot. Strike a blow for faith, family and freedom. Give today.
By the way, this is NOT the section of this article that the title of this piece refers to.
I had tuna for lunch yesterday. Or maybe it was beef or turkey – after all, I am not a biologist. Thank God I am an ordinary fellow and not a Supreme Court nominee. I know the difference between a man and a woman – and that I had tuna for lunch yesterday. Viva la difference!
A biologically male cyclist was cut from a British women’s race after a huge number of the women who actually have female chromosomes and plumbing threatened to boycott the race en masse if he was allowed to compete against them.
It is hideous that it has reached this point, but if women’s sports are to be saved from male opportunists and predators, we are going to have to learn to just say no to the nonsense. It is not, of course, just women’s sports at stake, but our culture generally. The predatory purple-haired, nose-ringed weirdos are in an absolute meltdown that Florida Governor Ron DeSantis signed the anti-grooming bill that prevents these cultural barbarians from talking about sex to our smallest children. They have reacted like a vampire to a crucifix, hissing and spitting. God bless him, Gov. DeSantis just said no – and parents in Florida can breathe a lot easier.
In other areas we have to think creatively to provide an alternative. In Communist Poland, which was heavily Catholic despite the government’s hatred and hostility, to be recognized, a marriage had to be done through the government. The hardy Poles adapted: they got the marriage credential from the state organs and then got their real marriage in the Church. The state could require all it wanted, but the actual practice of the Poles made the state increasingly irrelevant, ripe for the taking when St. John Paul the Great gave it a good shove. Perhaps women should form women’s athletic leagues open only to biological women. Go ahead and compete in the adulterated nonsense the NCAA is promoting, but then get the real results and records in the leagues they create. It will make the NCAA more irrelevant than it already is – and give everyone the opportunity to compete on a genuinely level playing field.
I am utterly worn out with all the “marginalized” stuff. Obtaining the sobriquet of “marginalized” is the weird modern path to power and privilege. Enough. The process of socialization means adapting ourselves to others to be part of the larger group. There is a LOT more room for variety within that context than woke “thinkers” acknowledge. Even in high school, one of our friends was gay. We all thought, well, that’s kind of weird, but she is okay…and everything went on as normal. Nobody, including the girl in question, thought everyone should affirm and celebrate her peculiarity – just go on as normal.
My sophomore counselor in high school became a trusted confidante. He was sent to be a principal at an elementary school in the district my junior year. In my senior year he came back as the high school principal. After the first few weeks of school, he took me aside and asked me what had happened to me while he was gone. I didn’t quite understand. He elaborated, “When I left you were one of those smart kids that was kind of a twink (his exact term). Those kids usually get bitter, resentful and withdrawn. I come back and you are the biggest big man on campus I’ve ever seen. What happened?” I laughed and told him I always liked people, that sometimes I WAS kind of weird, and I never could much resent people who noticed. So I kept liking people generally and most of them decided they liked my kind of weird. He laughed and said he wished he could bottle that attitude and give it to every smart kid who was kind of a twink early on.
We can all just get along if we would only try. But it is just stupid to try to take the weirdest quirks of a few people and try to make it the norm for everyone. We have to learn to say no to this stuff without rancor, but fight like mad when anyone attempts to impose it upon us. We can all live with each other’s weird quirks without being forced to adopt them ourselves.
One of the things we have done at CORAC without making much ado about it is making provision for Priests and Pastors who are persecuted. We have places where they can stay and embryonic support networks. It is a good preparation – but a lot trickier than it looks.
Our purpose is to build and strengthen the hierarchy in conformity with the direction of Jesus Christ and the Magisterium. There is some persecution of some Priests from within for their fidelity to the Magisterium. But, as with any organization, there are some Priests who want to claim persecution when they don’t get their way – or when their interpretation of a matter does not prevail, but a different, though reasonably legitimate interpretation does. The Bishop runs the Diocese. If someone wants to claim the mantle of persecuted because the Bishop has authority that he doesn’t, that is not sufficient. A Priest has a greater duty of obedience to his Bishop than a layman does – both an administrative duty as well as a deeper spiritual duty. That does not bother me. In fact, it is how it should be. During the course of my investigation by my Archdiocese, I voluntarily accepted a mildly greater duty of obedience than the average layman, though not nearly as extensive as that of a Deacon or Priest. That means that, on many matters, the Bishop’s judgment is binding whether it is contrary or not to an affected individual’s judgment.
Yet a Bishop’s judgment is not omnipotent in all things. A Priest may fully and licitly dissent from a Bishop’s spiritual judgment if it is contrary to the clear meaning of Christ’s words or the Magisterium – and from his administrative judgment if it involves the risk of physical harm. Thus, if a Priest has been cancelled by his Bishop because he preached that homosexuality is contrary to Scripture, for example, we want to help that Priest. Though it is not widely known, there are more than a few Bishops in this country who will take in Priests who have been persecuted for orthodoxy by unworthy Bishops. The vaccine mandates in a Diocese are a case of administrative abuse. Even before the evidence started accumulating on how dangerous these Covid shots are, it only took a little examination to determine that it was a type of gene therapy never attempted on humans before, that it had been disastrous in animal trials, and that effective therapies were being vigorously suppressed. A Bishop who imposed mandates on his Priests or his flock without doing this rudimentary level of investigation failed God and betrayed the flock he was charged with protecting. These are legitimate and serious grounds for lawful resistance.
So I worry about how to help those Priests who are cancelled for the latter grounds while staying away from those who are merely willful and want to be their own Bishop. The ideal for any Priest who has been cancelled for abusive reasons is to get regularized in a Diocese that values orthodoxy. If he is not interested in that, there is a serious problem with him. The goal is to build up the Church in orthodoxy and union, not in making further divisions by clerics who just want to have their own way in all things.
Then there is timidity. I had one Priest contact me from a particular Diocese with a seemingly genuine concern. I vetted him by checking with other Priests in the Diocese who I knew and trusted and whose discretion I trusted as well. It checked out. But the Priest insisted that I be the only one in contact with him. At a minimum, if we are going to refer to any resources, a Priest must communicate with the head of the committee and the Regional Coordinator. If he is not willing to do that, we cannot help. I have not heard back from him since I told him that.
I will not report a Priest to his Bishop for any inquiry he makes. But even if he is theologically or politically perfectly in line with me, I will not help for reasons of mere willfulness. We are called to build up the Church, not dismantle it.
For now, I am very restrained – for neither the committee head nor I have worked through all the dangers involved and the safeguards necessary. If persecution suddenly comes in a large way from outside, we have been building up a network that can and will house both persecuted Priests and Bishops. In all things, the question is how to build up the City of God.
It brings to mind a fundamental principle we must all seek to imprint ever more deeply in our hearts. It is easy to be reactionary – to rush in to try to correct any perceived wrong. But that often leads to correcting one abuse with another one that is equally bad – or even worse. (Sounds like American government these days, doesn’t it?) We have to use our reason and judgment not just to see abuses, but the potential for abuses in how we respond to them and so, how to follow Christ’s dictum to judge righteous judgment. It is why I counsel deliberation in all things. We must work to always be bold in the things we do and never be brash. Let us adopt the principle that so many in the medical profession have abandoned: First, do no harm.
If communication goes out for any length of time, meet outside your local Church at 9 a.m. on Saturday mornings. CORAC teams will be out looking for people to gather in and work with.
Find me on Gab at Charliej373 or at the CORAC group.
The Corps of Renewal and Charity (CORAC)
18208 Preston Rd., Ste. D9-552
Dallas, Texas 75252