Category Archives: Priesthood

“Hold on, please! They’re coming!”

kristallnacht

Apologies for making an analogy with Kristallnacht and the Shoah. It’s just that, honestly, this is what popped into my mind this morning when on the phone with Father Gordon, who’s in prison. The guards were coming to do count. When this happens, almost daily while we’re on the phone, Father Gordon J MacRae (ABOUT) says:

“Hold on, please! They’re coming!”

He then has to run out and stand in line and get counted. Big deal, right? I’ve heard him say this thousands of times over the years. But this time it was different. For me, it was electrifying: “They’re coming!” Honesty, the Nazi murderers coming to kill came to mind.

I mentioned this to Father Gordon just a few minutes ago when he got back on the phone, and then told him of a step even further that that. It struck me that this murderous analogy is not only what he himself meant to convey, but that he meant something even further. It came to mind that the “Hold on!” referred to just wait until we’re both in heaven, momentarily, and then we’ll pick up on this conversation where we left off…” as if to say, “Big deal about getting murdered; who cares about that if we have the Lord’s life within us, a life which is stronger than death?”

Father Gordon, becoming quiet for a moment, then responded to say that he can’t really speak about this, but, he said ever so reflectively, “The analogy is not totally improper.”

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Filed under Missionaries of Mercy, Priesthood, Prison, Vocations

Adoration on the Vigil of Immaculate Conception: record numbers, again.

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While the world goes crazy, ripped in this direction and that, there are those who are stably before our Lord Jesus. Mary does that for us, leading us to her Son. Meanwhile, there are a zillion Confessions during adoration. This is when I am most happy as a priest and it very much strikes me that I am living out the fatherhood of priesthood, being a father of the parish family. Meanwhile, during these dark times, from round about this region, there are a number of men who are expressing interest in being candidates to be seminarians for Charlotte Diocese.

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Suspect *because of* being a priest yet having been a victim

I remember a time some ten years ago when I met some priest friends for the first time in something like 13 or 15 years. They were friends, so I spent some time with them catching up. They were by anyone’s reckoning, “traditionalists”. Whatever, they were my friends I refused to sneak about and hide in order to speak to them. I did so openly, and got smashed down for it. It was said that now, I too, was suspect, since, bluster, bluster, bluster, I had been seen speaking with them! I had no idea, having been overseas for so many years, that things had disintegrated so badly in these USA. Anyway, I figured I would get some spiritual direction about it from yet another priest, and I was again smacked down by my superiors, and this time it was demanded that I reveal what the conversation was about with my stateside spiritual director. I protested that it was spiritual direction and so was privileged, and so I wouldn’t say. That was the end of me.

Years later, in speaking with another ecclesiastical superior who I think is a saint about all this, I could tell he was interested in what the conversation with the spiritual director was about as well, though he told me not to say anything if I didn’t want to. I said that, actually, it’s pretty humorous. The discussion of the spiritual direction was about how to deal with ecclesiastical superiors who want to know about one’s spiritual direction! He roared with laughter. Hahaha.

Anyway, it is pretty tough being a priest these days, as many treat priests as being guilty by association with priests who are guilty or not, as that isn’t known, as no due process is allowed, what with the accusation itself being the proof of whatever crime. Really? Yep. That makes the bishops into heroes, you know, the same old abuse of power so as to do the self-worship thing by which all the abuse came about to begin with.

Meanwhile, what if you were to have a priest who is – ooo! suspect for being a priest! – who is totally disgusted with such abuse, who was himself abused as a kid? Pretty tough, that. I’ve written at length about my own experiences as an unwitting kiddy porn star in what is surely still by far the largest kiddy porn operation ever wrought anywhere at any time to date – as this lasted for years in multiple junior high schools on a massive scale.

Oh, I should add here that the story of speaking with traditionalist priests wasn’t the only thing that made me suspect. I was also loudly claimed to be a priest who abuses kids because, get this, because I also offer what is called the Tridentine Mass, the Old Mass, the Latin Mass, the 1962 Mass, the Traditional Mass, and that Mass – it was said – was in and of itself abusive to any kids present with their families as they would also witness adherence to the Truth of our Redemption, which was said to be passé, overwith, done, a thing of the past, of history, it being a disservice then to celebrate the Mass of the Ages, an abuse of kids and everyone else.

So, the Mass of the Ages = abuse. I see. I’M GUILTY!

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Lol! But then… Donkeys and Jesus

Donkeys, always with the Holy Family, know the entirety of the hell the Holy Family went through. Behold, the reality of a donkey with the Holy Family, with Mary being the Ark of The Covenant:

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I love it.

Mind you, if you think the donkey is scowling and is upset with his burden, no no, it’s not that way; instead, the donkey knows he’s on a forced journey bringing the Holy Family into exile in Egypt because of Herod murdering all the boys in Bethlehem in order to kill Jesus. The donkey, hardly upset with the Holy Family, is practicing his situational awareness. Gooood donkeeey!

This is my life while bringing Jesus in the Blessed Sacrament on my far flung Communion Calls to shut-ins, to those in Rehabs and Nursing Homes and Hospitals. I hope Jesus thinks I’m a gooood donkeeey! ;-)

And if anyone needs reminding about the great situational awareness of any good donkey, remember that donkeys are put in with flocks of sheep as they are superb at protecting the flock from predators. All priests should be gooood donkeeeys!

DONKEY FOX

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Not just a singing donkey: true Opera. Why all priests should be donkeys.

A reader sent this in, knowing that I think donkeys are the best:

  • They’re always with the Holy Family: Nazareth to Bethlehem to Egypt, all the back to Nazareth, and then bringing Jesus to the Cross.
  • They’re intelligent, not stubborn (mules are stubborn, for a reason), instead only doing what they understand (which is really smart). This is why those who interfere with children would have been better off (as Jesus says) to have a specifically (always left untranslated) donkey-millstone tied about one’s neck and thrown into the sea. In other words, donkeys are much more intelligent than those who do such things.
  • They sing, their praying being braying, but the donkey above has moved to opera!
  • They guard the flock, stopping the threat of predators:

DONKEY FOX

All priests should be donkeys, and be proud of it.

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Free rosaries for priests: unbreakable, made with love by laity. I’ll pay postage

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A number of makers of unbreakable rosaries have sent in unbreakable rosaries. There are smaller versions and bigger versions. I’m clutzy so I like the big ones. Unbreakable is a necessity for me. All I do is break breakable rosaries, so these are great.

Comments are moderated. I won’t let comments through on this post. If you’re a priest and would like an unbreakable rosary, just put your name and address in a comment and I’ll get it sent out to you forthwith.

One is spoken for already (but I don’t have the address yet). Let me know which one you would like. Also let me know if you’re easy about it and would be happy with any of these.

These were made with love to assist our priests. Thanks to our rosary makers!

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You are a donkey but you carry Christ

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“Asinus es, sed Christum portas.”Saint Augustine

The Palestinian donkey above, near the hermitage yesterday, guards the herds from predators, as donkeys do. He sports the Cross of Christ well.

I should always like to be the guard-donkey priest that carries Christ, The Priest.

DONKEY FOX

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Poetry by six year old Gordon J MacRae

scot beer

Father Gordon J MacRae, troublemaker that he is, since he was a six year old, composed and broadcast this poem out loud, before God and everyone:

Isn’t it nice that we have faces
They contain my favorite places
Eyes to see
Ears to hear
Nose to smell and
Mouth for beer

Wow. At six years old! I love it.

It’s reminiscent of SCOTUS Justice Brett Michael Kavanaugh’s love for beer. ;-)

BTW, there’s no yearbook for six year olds, nor any Senate Committee by which he might defend his reputation against, say, Voice of the “Faithful.”

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Ensuring Low Mass rubrical precision at diocesan priests’ retreat with a Glock

Some practice altars were set up to refresh the exactness of rubrics of the guys for low Mass.

It’s surprising who was assisted on this or that point. It’s always good to have other sets of eyes for that which is important.

When teaching a seminarian the low Mass back in 2010, he was cautioned that should he mess up on this or that rubric he might hear a gun get racked in the congregation as a warning to stay awake. There are those who get apoplectic with an honest mistake. When he made a mistake I would imitate the sound of a gun being racked. There was laughter all around.

He’s now a priest. He was with us sharpening up his rubrical precision. Upon a miniscule mistake I tapped my holster… click… to laughter… bringing things full circle.

One of the vicar foranes of the diocese, himself expert with guns, asked for the Glock and – ensuring it was empty of any possible magazine and any possible chambered round – waited for the next small slip up so as repeatedly to make the tell-tale racking sound with the slide multiple times, again to the laughter of all.

A good time was had by all. Newly scheduled low Masses are being added around the diocese. I love this diocese.

By the way and just to say, I once asked an FSSP priest if any of their members would make a breathless correction if anyone made an honest mistake. He said never. Not in the seminary. Not after ordination. Breathlessness is only for those who don’t know Jesus.

To the point:

  • All things liturgical are NOT about all things liturgical.
  • All things liturgical are about Jesus Christ, King of kings, Lord of lords, He who is the Prince of the Most Profound Peace.

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Ultra-clericalistic notes on the retreat. Mysterium tremendum et fascinans.

img_20181009_204643232~26310944525712038803..jpgI don’t drink at all. Because I carry. But, hey! I’m on retreat. I was still wanting to celebrate the *Justice*. So I Kaved in, so to speak.

Meanwhile, as I listen to stories of my fellow priests and share a few of my own, I am heartened at what a great diocese we have here in Charlotte. There are so many good and holy priests. Such good laity. A good and holy bishop who prays for us, has time for us. I had an hour and forty minutes with him the other day.

Our retreat director, a church history prof and a student of all things Ratzinger, is hitting all the right notes. I’ve heard only good reactions.

Meanwhile, there is all the right sort of clericalism going on, you know, besides talking shop, lots of adoration and getting guys up to speed on the Low Mass[!] For instance, tonight, before confessions, we have a super-clericalized meal planned: massive steaks, baked potatoes, wine (I might have to Kave in again).

And before us all in all this is what the retreat director has been putting before us:

Mysterium tremendum et fascinans.

When’s the last time you’ve been on a good spiritual retreat? With Confessions, Adoration, no apologies for being Catholic?

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Homily 2018 10 04 Lambs and wolves

wolf angry

Wolves are scary. As a youngster I remember walking back home from the Blessed Sacrament Chapel in the parish for miles along a forest gravel road in the north woods of Minnesota and about halfway I heard what could only have been a wolf (LOUD!) obviously with rabies screaming and crying and shrieking and hoooowling and hooowling as it traveled parallel to me, instigating me to ask my guardian angel that I be invisible in every way to that wolf so that I might get home safe.

Jesus said that He would be sending out his disciples as lambs in the midst of wolves. So what are we to think about that? Wolves would nip at a hoof of lamb and toss it spinning into the air, bleating helplessly. They would then each take a hoof and the nose and pull it apart, gorging themselves.

Question: How do we prepare for such encounters? Disguise oneself as a wolf? Be all tactically prepared, as if that would save us analogously from the spiritual pitfalls associated after original sin with the world, the flesh and the devil?

Answer: Just be the lamb to whom Jesus provides a love stronger than any pitfalls, a love stronger than death. I want to go to heaven. That‘s what’s important. How about you?

Be the lamb!

And be that lamb in the midst of the wolves!

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Adoration, Confession, Peter’s Keys

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Our weekly Sunday morning holy hours 6:00-7:00 AM at Holy Redeemer sometimes have a quiet moment or two, during one of which I took this picture. We have the rosary or a chaplet, lauds, chants. After exposition, to make sure we have some quiet, I stay on my knees before the Blessed Sacrament for the first ten minutes. But after that, I go back to the Confessional. I mean, people kneeling before our Lord makes for a busy confessional. Always so very inspiring, making any priest, even me, happy to be one with Jesus in His priesthood.

I would just like to point out the bit of yellow that you see through the window on the outside of the door. That’s the flag of the Holy See, the Papal Flag. We have to remember, do we not, that the Holy Father, whatever anyone might think about him, whatever Jesus might think about him, still has the power of keys, still delegates such powers with the apostolic mandate of bishops, who still sub-delegate that to the priests.

I make no apologies for being in solidarity with the Bishop of Rome – the most attacked-by-Satan bishop in the world – praying for him. I always mention him during Mass (not all do, you know), and at the end of the intercessions, the bidding prayers. I mean, I have cloistered nuns who pray for my wretched soul. When I complain to them that they are getting me in trouble with all those prayers because Jesus will ask me what I actually did with all those graces, they instantly say that such trouble with Jesus is alright since – “Look at it this way” they say – just think of where you would have been if we weren’t praying for you at all. Oh my.

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Our Courageous Seminarians: Happy to be called to the hell of Calvary in solidarity with Jesus. Beatitude!

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So many! Might you pray in solidarity with them as they follow our Lord’s call even while all of hell is unleashed? Here, then, is the prayer:

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In the midst of the present crisis we’re trying to do right by our Lord Jesus, building our own seminary to do this.

All our big donors for the seminary – who do their research – have said that things have changed because of the present crisis, saying that because of all the horrible news and the lackadaisical attitude to be found pretty much everywhere about faith and morals, from seminaries to priests to bishops all the way to Rome, they have changed their minds on their big donations.

Instead of donating what they promised, because, they said, we’re trying our best to do the right thing in every way, they are all going to double their donations. That means, from $500,000.00 to $1,000,000.00 for one donor, and so it went with the others.

Here in the diocese of Charlotte, we’re doubling down, entrenching with our Lord Jesus. More attendance at Mass. More Confessions. More Adoration. More vocations. And after that, more vocations again.

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Speaking against priests retirement assessment and what happened then

DONKEY FOX

Donkeys are often the Shepherds of Sheep because they kill the wolves.

This past weekend we started taking up a second collection for priests retirement, which is an obligatory assessment proportionally burdening parishes as stipulated by the “central administration” of Charlotte Diocese.

I told everyone that I totally DISagree with this collection as it should be totally unnecessary. “Just my opinion,” I said, “but I don’t think priests should ever retire. I think they should be martyrs.” My “tone” was that of encouragement for priests.

Of course there was laughter with that statement as I had preached rather ferociously about the present crisis. The laughter means that they agreed. ;-) But, of course, they know that such a grace is up to our Lord’s providence, so they contributed with generosity to the retirement fund. Priests are humbled with this lay led shepherding of the older donkeys shepherds.

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Knotted nylon rosaries for priests? Update: Encouragement for priests!

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This was made for me by a seminarian at a seminary where I was teaching a while back. He added the miraculous medal. He’s now a priest after the Heart of our Lord. I added the medal of Saint Benedict (gift from a cloistered Benedictine nun who prays for me).

I really like unbreakable rosaries as I’ve broken all other “unbreakable” rosaries. Also, I guess it’s the nylon, it doesn’t twist up into unknottable knots. Perhaps it carries the blessing of Our Lady Undoer of Knots. Anyway, I love everything about it.

To the point: A priest friend noted my EDC mention of this rosary and wondered where he could get one. I’m going to be brave and ask if anyone knows how to make such things and wouldn’t mind making such a rosary for a priest. Note the color! Note that the “Our Father” knots about twice as many twists as the “Hail Mary” knots. Don’t worry about medals. Priests know how to add their favorite medals or crucifixes.

I mean, we want to support good prayer of our priests, right? Even priests can be saints. Difficult to imagine that, I know, but it’s true. We need to help each other get to know Jesus through Mary all the more all the time. But if we can’t attempt such a rosary, perhaps a Hail Mary for him and all priests would be awesome: Hail Mary…

Update: We have a promise of a rosary or even a few coming up in a few days. This is great encouragement for us priests from the laity. This is much needed these days. So, thanks especially for that. In fact, this is what I’m sensing: the Holy Spirit is firing up the Mystical Body of Christ, more Mass attendance, more Adoration, more Confession, more personal support and encouragement. All priests thus encouraged are most thankful.

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Perfecting EDCC for priests: “car carry”

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EDCC (every day car carry) for a priest should include rituals new and old with useful quick reference pages for emergencies at the moment of death. I have a standing permission from the bishop to do house blessings as exorcisms of a place as long as it’s within the territory of my parish, which is gargantuan geographically, and also for elsewhere as long as the parish priest of that parish is good with it. Holy Water with the old blessings / exorcisms is a must not only for blessings and exorcisms but also for emergency baptisms, for the blessings of graves at burials.

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An epi-pen is a regular for the EDCC, as is THE EXTRACTOR. You can get one SAWYERs EXTRACTORs on Amazon for like 12 bucks. It’s a reverse syringe, so that pressing the plunger make for suction. There are different size cups depending on the kind of wound or snake bite. There are so many brown recluse spiders and timber rattlers round about, not to mention yellow jackets and such. This is extremely powerful, much better than anything else I’ve ever seen. I’ve used it really a lot, enough to wear one out, and these are heavy duty. I guess I either look for trouble or trouble searches me out.

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This rides around with me for any eventuality… as does this:

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A fire extinguisher? It’s pretty small, fitting into the passenger door bottle holder. I guess the reason is past experience with an el-cheapo car, which was leaking gasoline onto the red hot headers, so much so quickly that the gasoline was cooling the headers. I mentioned that I smelled gas to a truck driver and he took a look and said that I had a really good guardian angel, because there’s absolutely no way that a fire shouldn’t have immediately engulfed the whole car right through the so-called firewall. And here I had been driving around like that for quite a while. That was years ago.

On the floor of the back seat there’s all that’s needed for the day-off target practice…

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Perfecting EDC for a priest

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Starting with the lower left moving clockwise, not on the belt:

  • Unbreakable nylon rope knotted rosary with miraculous and St Benedict medals.
  • Purple stole for Confession and sacraments and sacramentals like exorcism.
  • Hospital I.D.
  • Bait wallet with a dollar bill and fake credit cards etc. I’ve been shaken down before. Not a pleasant experience. But I don’t want to be hamstrung without the contents of my real wallet. If this works until you can exit the scene, great. If not, it buys you precious seconds to put another plan into action.

Inside the belt also not carried on the belt (left to right):

  • Oleum Infirmorum (unseen: personal medicines)
  • Voice recorder, for when I can’t take notes but have to remember something, also for homilies at whatever of the churches on whatever day.
  • Pen, which goes on the shoulder pen pocket.
  • El-cheapo watch that no one would want to steal or be envious about.
  • Real wallet, which includes medical cards, credit cards, drivers licence, gun permit, car insurance and registration, USCCA insurance (I can’t recommend this more), enough cash for rubbish food if on the road way too long on any day, and for ammo for the days off.
  • Phone which also contains all medical indications such as conditions and meds taken and those that are essential and why and counter-indications for whatever might be done in an emergency situation.

Lower right corner:

  • Scapular of Mount Carmel (I have a super long and wild history with this). This goes  over the undershirt and under the 5-11 shirt.
  • Pyx from Lourdes given to all permanent chaplains by UNITALSI. Of course, I only have this when I’m carrying the blessed Sacrament. It hangs around the neck but the Pyx is placed deep in a very useful 5-11 shirt cargo pocket over the heart. Ritual books can also fit in these huge cargo pockets when visiting hospitals, rehabs, nursing homes, shut-ins. The 5-11 tactical shirts are the best clergy shirts I know.

On the belt, starting with the handgun:

  • Glock 19 Gen 4 with no backstrap, no Hogue grip, with tritium sights installed in Smyrna (this is something I’ve had to bring to the fore for real a number of times). I’m guessing I’m one of the most shot at priests. Nothing has ever connected. All it takes is once. Many have suffered that and are on their way… For them: Hail Mary… The Glock is chambered with 15 in the magazine. These are defensive rounds. The Glock is carried appendix, but outside which makes it possible. I don’t even know it’s there even after all-day carry, which is, in fact, all day, every day.
  • Keys by the zillions, which hang from the Serpa Blackhawk, the dreaded, hated, dangerous holster which I love to pieces as an aggressor simply cannot defeat it’s locking mechanism, but which is, relatively speaking, zero problem for the carrier.
  • Tourniquet. This is not just about guns. I’m often doing dangerous things with chainsaws and such. Also, the leg is such that if there were even a minor accident in the wrong conditions, compound fractures would be all too easy and multiple.
  • On the right side, a flashlight, really bright, also with strobe. Use it all the time.
  • Two mags situated for quick combat reload with full metal jacket. I mean, if you need this, someone’s wearing a ballistic vest, right?
  • Attached to the bottom of the mag carrier is a 2 1/2″ straight blade in combat position for the left hand but also available to the right hand. This is also opposite side appendix carry outside the belt, which makes it possible.

Just to say, I wear the 5-11 tactical shirt NOT tucked in, and so a multitude of sin is covered over, you know, like the love of God and neighbor in all good contrition covers a multitude of sin. ;-)

Then there’s car-carry EDC for a priest. More on that in another post.

Any suggestions most welcome.

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Whistle-blower Priest murdered?! Rejoice and be exceedingly happy…

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The other week when I snapped this picture of one of the doors of Saint Peter’s Basilica in Rome I very much noticed the grotesque nature of how martyrdom comes about: Yikes!

But now, not long after, I review this scene of the martyrs and call to mind the Beatitudes and so long to be with them, no longer seeing anything grotesque, no longer any shock. I only see their enduring love and oneness with the Truth, who is our Way and Life. I see that such love, given them by God as placed into tabernacles of the Holy Spirit is a love stronger than death, is enthusiastic to go to heaven even in the midst of torture and death. Such great love! Look at that! Such great love!

Then, last night, the special report below from Church Militant showed up at the very top of my youtube recommended-for-me list. The old television journalistic investigative reporter spirit comes to the fore for Michael Voris especially in this episode. Hats off to him. Spectacular work. Really well done.

I would add just one more thing to that report: there really are a lot of priests like the one spoken about in this special report. It makes me think that the author of a certain eleven page report is not wrong to have removed himself from availability to others to do him harm. Saint Thomas More insisted that we have to use our wits to stay alive, but if Providence provides that we be martyrs, well, that’s up to the Lord. This is well worth the watch. While I say “Yikes!” again for a moment, I then am again in awe of the martyrs, how they have a love which is stronger than death, the Love of our Lord, who is Himself the One, the only One, who will come to judge the living and the dead and the world by fire:

After seeing this, I immediately called up the author of one of the “packages” I brought over by hand to be directly delivered into the hands of Pope Francis with particular oral explanations (which was done). I told the author of that “package” that he had better watch his back. We had a great discussion about heaven. I am heartened. I just now spoke with the author of the other “package” and told him the same thing. Both packages go the heart of the present crisis. They indicate that something must be done.

But, all the same, whatever way it works out, if it all comes to violence and martyrdom, rejoicing in Jesus’ Truth and Love stronger than death is always the way to go. Again, I am heartened by the witness of of the authors of my “packages.”  So, just to say:

  • Verbum Domini manet in aeternum.
  • Copiosa apud Eum Redemptio.
  • Misericordias Domini in aeternum cantabo.

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Homily 2018 09 19 Assessing Jesus, John

flautist

In this homily I went after the legitimacy of we, the great unwashed, assessing Jesus and John. Pfft. Like that‘s going to work. Pfft.

Jesus said to the crowds:

“To what shall I compare the people of this generation?
What are they like?

They are like children who sit in the marketplace and call to one another,

♬ ‘We played the flute for you, ♬ but you did not dance. ♬
♬ We sang a dirge, ♬ but you did not weep.’ ♬

For John the Baptist came neither eating food nor drinking wine,
and you said, ‘He is possessed by a demon.’

The Son of Man came eating and drinking and you said,
‘Look, he is a glutton and a drunkard,
a friend of tax collectors and sinners.’

But wisdom is vindicated by all her children.”

That Wisdom is God’s Love. God is Love.

That Wisdom is God’s Truth. God is Truth.

But the manipulators of political correctness unto themselves know nothing of God’s Love, of God’s Truth. So that can’t see anything of honesty and integrity of the lives of Jesus and John.

Here’s the deal: they cut off John’s head with their self-absorption; they crucified Jesus with their self-absorption. It all comes down to self-absorption.

To save us from self-absorption is why John pointed out Jesus; it’s why Jesus stood in our place, the innocent for the guilty, to have the right in His own justice to have mercy on us. And we were oblivious. God loved us while we were yet sinners. Yep. The Light shining into the darkness. Thank you, Lord. You’re the One. You’re the only One.

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Review Board rejects Paul of Tarsus

Saint Paul Conversion Damascus Caravaggio

The vicious, murderous Saul, was graced with a vocation by Jesus. But Lord, he said, they will hold my past against me! I am evil and bad. Don’t worry, Jesus replied, I shall be with you. And so it was, Saint Paul would boast of his weakness so as to give Jesus the glory.

If we go before our judgment and Satan would be allowed to accuse us for all we have done, each one of us, and if God would judge us only on those accusations, whether true or false, out of context or not, we would all be going straight to hell. The faith is about mercy, about the Good News, the Evangelium, the Gospel, not about an uncontrollable lust to condemn all to hell with no chance of redemption, with no chance of salvation if they are not already mirror images of ourselves. The faith is not about only bad news confirming only bad news. Playing the part of the Accuser, damning others with no chance of redemption and salvation, is a rejection of Christ who redeemed all and wants that the many be saved. Jesus said that those who deny him before men He will deny before His Heavenly Father.

It’s time, I think, to re-publish something I came across back in the early 1980s at Father Paul Marx’ Human Life Center in Collegeville, MN (which later became Human Life International in Front Royal, VA), then operated by the famous R.M. I put this up on this blog a few years ago, and have used many times in my life.

A gate-keeper psychologist for vocations to the priesthood for a nearby Archdiocese (he hated that description of himself), passed this bit of parody below around to everyone, poking fun at those in his profession who had no faith whatsoever (slightly edited).

It demonstrates that if one is looking for something to condemn, one can find ten thousand examples even in the greatest of saints. And any one of those things is today way more than enough to have one sent off for an “evaluation” at, say, the homosexualist crusaders at Saint Luke Institute, the results of which evaluation are predetermined by the one who is paying (not by what is actually known about the subject). Dismissals from the clerical state are multiplied. When you have a troublesome priest like the one described below, they are literally cast out of the priesthood. Truly. Pretty much everywhere.

I mean, just imagine, there are those even among the cardinals of the Church who condemn our Lord as a failure for having died on the Cross. They say this with a reluctant and sad voice of a forced admission. For them, even our Lord should have been sent away for evaluation and then dismissed. Isn’t it true that those who only condemn have to look for more to condemn, even if it is not there? The following is a call for an examination of conscience for us all:

MEMO

To: Paul of Tarsus, Independent Missionary, Corinth, Greece
From: CYA Missionary Board

Dear Mr. Paul:

We recently received an application from you for service under our Board.

It is our policy to be as frank and open-minded as possible with all our applicants. We now have an exhaustive study of your case. To be plain, we are surprised that you have been able to pass as a bona fide missionary.

We are told that you are afflicted with severe eye trouble. This is certain to be an insuperable handicap to an effective ministry. Our Board requires 20/20 vision.

Is it true that you have a jail record? Certain brethren report that you did two years’ time at Caesarea, and were imprisoned at Rome too. You made so much trouble for the businessmen at Ephesus that they refer to you as “the man who turned the world upside down.” Sensationalism has no place in the missions. We also deplore your lurid “over the wall in a basket” episode at Damascus.

We are appalled at the obvious lack of conciliatory behavior. Diplomatic men are not stoned and dragged out of the city gate, or assaulted by furious mobs. Have you ever considered that gentler words might gain you friends? Why, we even read in one place where all men turned against you, those of like faith too. I am enclosing for your edification a copy of Dallas Carnegus’ book entitled, How to Win Jews and InfluenceGreeks.

Your ministry has been far too flighty to be successful. First Asia Minor, then Macedonia, then Greece, then Italy, and now you are talking of a wild goose chase into Spain. Have you not suspected that a nice cozy spot in some permanent location might do more good? Concentration is more important than dissipation of one’s powers. You cannot win the whole world by yourself. You are just one little Paul!

In a recent sermon you said, “God forbid that I should glory in anything save the cross of Christ. ” It seems to us that you ought also to give some glory to our heritage, our denominational program, the unified budget, and the World Federation of Churches. And by all means don’t forget the League of Consensus and the Society of Niceness.

It’s amusing to us how you say you do the work of an evangelist when there are just a few of you romping around the countryside. Our method is to spend months in promoting evangelistic campaigns. With a full house, there’s bound to be some action: your methods are too uncertain.

And who do you think you are in telling our church leaders that you long to impart some spiritual blessing to them! Are they not educated enough to have their own blessing? Frankly, Mr. Paul, it’s a trifle too humbling to have plain ordinary men like yourself stand on the same platform with our titled professionals.

Dr. Luke reports that you are a thin little man, bald, frequently sick, and always so agitated over your little church groups that you sleep very poorly. He states that you pad around the house praying half the night. A healthy mind and a robust body is what we expect and require.

You recently wrote to Timothy that you had “fought a good fight.” Fighting is hardly a recommendation for a missionary. No fight is a good fight. Jesus came not to bring the sword, but peace. You boast too that you fought wild beasts at Ephesus. What on earth do you mean?

It hurts me to tell you this, Paul, but in my 25 years of experience I have never met a man who is so opposite to the requirements of this Mission Board. If we were to accept you, we would be breaking almost every rule in modern missionary practice.

Mr. Heady High-Minded
Director of the MISSIONARY BOARD

That could be edited to include more, of course. For instance, one could say that Paul’s words against the rancor and violence of bullying homosexualist crusaders (Romans 1:18 to the end of the chapter) is not the inclusive way to go these days.

We could add another bit of sarcasm in reference to Paul’s condemnation of doing evil to achieve good, which was very much the modus operandi described in detail in the USCCB’s document on medical ethics.

I wonder if we could come up with a list of saints who were dismissed or discounted or ignored or despised by the world and, indeed, within the Church, but who became the greatest of saints. Oh, that’s right. It would be all of them.

But no, really, how about Saint Francis? Remember his conversation with Brother Leo on perfect joy? That would surely seal one’s fate in most seminaries as being against the super mansions that some of our bishops have built.

And then consider Saint Benedict Joseph Labre?

Saint Ignatius was hailed as insane by all during his visit to Jerusalem?

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