Tag Archives: vultures

Amoris laetitia: road kill and vultures


This gargantuan vulture was munching away on freshly prepared road-pizza the other day as I went to visit one of my infirm parishioners. The size of the vultures in the mountains here amaze me. When they jump up to fly off they only get as high as one’s windshield. And hitting one of these at any speed would be like having a cement block come crashing through the window, providing more road kill of bird and human for other vultures.


He didn’t like being disturbed during his dining experience and gave me one of those typical vulture evil eyes, turning his head toward me in mid-wing-flap, as if to say that I would pay for such an interruption, with me being his next road-pizza meal. This, however, is not on my agenda, not for this actual vulture, and not for any figurative vulture either, and there are plenty of the latter by the way. We must be attentive to the directions and discernment provided to us by our guardian angels, who, if we are willing, will clear up our intellects to see the truth of the matter right before us. If we have fear, we will die. Opinion is fear (as the Angelic Doctor Thomas Aquinas instructs). We must be one with the truth, and the truth is a living Person, Jesus Christ, the Divine Son of God. I received this comment in the linked post below, it needing to be up top in its own post:

Father, I will be really honest and say that I struggle with all this. I am no theologian or great spiritual thinker. I have no problem with what you wrote [here: Flores for the Immaculate Conception (rorate caeli and conscience edition)]. It just leaves me with this feeling of confusion. Peter, the understanding that Jesus is the head, the Holy Spirit in us and around us and guiding/instructing. Yes, I believe. To love the Holy Father in the way you say – yes. But to love what it looks like any leader might be doing? [Never!]

Are we to understand that the Will of God is being carried out just as He wishes in Rome, in our dioceses, etc? [Not necessarily. We must be strong. We must discern. That’s work. But don’t be afraid. Would you accept everything Judas said? Or Peter in his denial of Jesus? No? So, we must discern.] Are we to submit and agree that all is in His will? [You use a capital letter for “His” meaning our Lord. So, for that question, the answer is yes, with distinctions. God provides good things for us, and also permits, because of original sin and free will of people, bad things. Just because God permits evil doesn’t mean that God thinks that evil is good. But all things do work for the good of the one who loves God. God can bring good out of evil, just as our Redemption and Salvation is taken from the Passion and Death of our Lord.] I guess what I am asking is – how are we supposed to see all of it? [From the perspective of being tortured to death on the cross in solidarity with Jesus in His solidarity with us. From THAT perspective.] If it looks like the institutional (for lack of a better word) Church [Roman Curia might be used] is being torn apart, and so many are so hurt and confused and just don’t know for sure exactly what we are supposed to do in a very real and daily-life way in our parish, or how we are supposed to respond when another thing comes down from the Vatican or our Archbishop?? [We are all to respond with humility and fidelity to Jesus, who is the Truth, and thus with steadfast faith enlivened in Sacred Tradition and with Sacred Scripture and with the great Magisterial interventions. Look, there is a difference between the Magisterial interventions of the Council of Trent on the one hand and then an exhortation which is called an incentive to dialogue on the other hand. Period. If we don’t accept that, we have ulterior motives. It is like saying that 2+2≠4 just because, you know, just because (just because that is then a license to do anything.) We must strain to perceive our guardian angels’ direction] I just can’t seem to find peace in this. It’s almost as if the only way I can feel any peace is if I shut all of it out. But I can’t shut all of it out. [Right! Good for you. Falling asleep alongside Peter, James and John during Jesus’ agony in the Garden of Gethsemane is no way to go about things. We are to watch and pray so as not to enter into temptation. Yes. Arise! Let us be going! for the betrayer, the world, the flesh and the devil, is at hand.]

Oh, and who are those pesky figurative vultures? They are the ones who insist that Amoris laetitia is an ex-Cathedra ultra-super infallible decision in its every word and implication when it absolutely is not. To insist that it is, whether on the ultra-super-traditional-ism-ist side of things or the liberal side of things is to kill the faith of people. That is not good. That makes for death. And then the vultures are demons.


Filed under Amoris laetitia, Missionaries of Mercy

When a WAKE turns into a KETTLE, run for your life!

turkey vultures buzzards

Being a Minnesota boy, I always thought that our dangerous animals were timber wolves and moose and that’s it, and that here in North Carolina, panthers and bears and red wolves and wild boar and lynx comprised what was dangerous and that’s it. But now I’m meeting up with huge numbers of vultures. I’ve never seen anything like it.

While out on Communion Calls yesterday I disturbed a “WAKE OF VULTURES”, which is what a group of turkey buzzards are called when they are feeding on a carcass. Gruesome. The fellow pictured here takes a bit of looking at to see what you are looking at. Even though he is flying away, his head is turned back and looking directly at you, staring at you, noting who you are, saying to you ever so dreadfully: “You’re not so big. Fifty of us could finish you off in a few minutes! Just you wait!”

This is about the northernmost stretch of their normal territory, which means the ones in these parts can have a wing-span edging on toward seven feet. What a fright! What scares me about these guys is that they can congregate in enormous groups. Down the way in Brevard there is always a “KETTLE OF VULTURES” (meaning they are in flight, stirring around as in a vortex in a kettle), near the Triangle Marathon gas station on the Southwestern end of town. But out here in the Smoky Mountains, just yesterday, I saw a KETTLE nearby that had what looked to be 175 vultures, no exaggeration. I thought perhaps more like 225. I mean, what are they planning to feed on up there? Why do they wait, stirring the kettle like that? It seems to me that if they put their minds to it, they could easily kill live prey just by sheer numbers, including human prey. Yikes! So many!

Anyway, an active imagination is sharpened by not watching TV! (I don’t have one.) I heartily recommend just taking in the show outside. It’s refreshing. That helps purity of heart, agility of soul. Nature is absolutely wonderful. Most entertaining. Having said that, here’s a heart-stopping video of a just-born calf. The vultures are demons. Relentless. But, with a little love, they are stoppable, and yet, oh my…

If you want to make it that demons will have a really difficult time trying to bother you, regular confession is the best way to go. If you are repentant, that’s pretty much a guarantee of purity of heart and agility of soul. And you’ll have plenty of mama cows, that is, guardian angels, to protect you. [I’m now ducking for cover, having just compared my guardian angel to a mama cow!]


Filed under Nature