Saturday, July 31, 2010

"Relativism on the Right"? -- Father Keenan's Charge and the Debate

Patrick Archbold of Creative Minority Report rejects Father James Keenan’s charge that Traditionalism can lead to ‘relativism’ on the Right. Father James Keenan just happens to be a Jesuit priest at Boston College. Kyle Cupp, of Journeys in Alterity believes that the Theologian Father James Keenan is correct in his assessment. But, as you see from Father Keenan's words and in Kyle’s post deciphering whether either Father Keenan or Kyle Cupp is referring to Tradition or the traditions of the Church is like nailing jell-o to the wall. Kyle uses this inconspicuous wording that would give a private eye a run for his money in finding out where he stands on this particular issue.  After a reevaluation of my thoughts on Kyle’s post, and after searching the internet more extensively I have become further enlightened on Father Keenan’s social views and must ask Kyle Cupp a few questions: Is the Church’s Teaching on “homosexual marriage” one of those truths taught by the Church that is a merely time-bound tradition that would make a relativist out of a believer in its transcendent truth? Is the Church’s teaching on forbidding women from becoming priests one those truths of Traditions that shouldn’t be understood as timeless? What truths are not timeless? What Traditions that a person of faith believes in puts them in danger of relativism?

While on earth, as faithful Catholic Christians, we must follow apostolic Tradition which was originally handed down by Jesus to the apostles, and those teachings were then in turn the handed down to others via the apostles oral teaching. These teachings largely are consistent with those contained in Scripture. Both the oral and written Tradition were handed down and entrusted to the Church. When we speak of those Traditions that we as Catholics must follow as are unchangeable we are referring to the Apostolic Tradition and not the ecclesial traditions which, according to the Catechism, are “the various theological, disciplinary, liturgical or devotional traditions that have been adapted or changed over time while remaining faithful to Tradition at the same time.”

If both Father Keenan and Kyle are referring, not to Tradition, but rather to traditions (note the changing in the casing of the “t”) being changed over time then they are correct. From my research it has become self-evident that at least in some respects Father Keenan is referring to changing apostolic Tradition and not merely some of those ecclesial traditions. From my net research, it seems most likely that Father Keenan is referring to Tradition so in my final conclusion I must agree with Patrick Archold’s assessment of Father Keenan’s statement. Following the Tradition of the Church can never lead to relativism. But, Father Keenan’s mode of thought has the possibility of leading to scandal and even heresy.

Monday, July 26, 2010

Interesting Saying by C.S. Lewis

In The Four Loves by C.S. Lewis, Lewis writes "If Affection is made the absolute sovereign of a human life the seeds will germinate. Love, having become a god, becomes a demon."

I found this quote to be very interesting.

Dr. Miravalle Speaks on Our Lady of Guadalupe -- Part 1/3

Sunday, July 25, 2010

Counseling Student Pressured to Change Christian Beliefs in the Name of Diversity

Here is another instance of how diversity and tolerance are used to discriminate against individuals who believe in traditional Christian beliefs.

Here are 2 definitions of diversity:
1) diverseness: noticeable heterogeneity; "a diversity of possibilities"; "the range and variety of his work is amazing"
2) In the political arena, the term diversity (or diverse) is used to describe political entities (neighborhoods, student bodies, etc) with members who have identifiable differences in their backgrounds or lifestyles.

It seems as though that the way the term diversity is used in our society today is quite antithetical to the word's actual meaning. It seems as though progressivism has hijacked yet another word in our society to mean something it doesn't (like social justice). Do those people who claim to believe in diversity actually believe in diversity or just in acceptance of different groups with the same liberal ideology? Those people who claim to champion the cause of diversity are actually against diversity of thought. The champions of tolerance are not very tolerant. That's another misnomer. The faculty at Augusta State University are demanding that the student be tolerant of others' beliefs while they are refusing to be tolerant of her beliefs. Liberals version of tolerance equals outright intolerance of the worst kind.

Augusta State University gave a graduate student in counseling named Jen Keeton an ultimatum -- either give up your Christian beliefs or be expelled from the graduate counseling program. What happened to our right to Freedom of Religion? The student expressed her Christian beliefs on homosexuality and then ASU faculty targeted her because she refused to compromise her Christian beliefs.

"Faculty members had demanded she 'attend at least three workshops … which emphasize … diversity training sensitive toward working with GLBTQ populations.' They also wanted her to "develop" her knowledge of homosexuality by reading 10 articles and increasing her exposure to homosexuals and lesbians by attending 'the Gay Pride Parade.'"

They said that she must change her whole Christian belief system to conform to the American Counseling Association's code of ethics. But, this doesn't make sense since the code of ethics covers behavior regarding treatment of clients and not belief systems. Plus, she hadn't even seen one client, so how did she violate a client when she hadn't even seen any clients yet? It is quite apparent that Jen Keeton was being discriminiated against for her christian beliefs and not because she did anything unethical or violated any code of ethics.

Bob Unruh, BRAVE NEW SCHOOLS 'Lose Christianity or face expulsion' Georgia student told to read 'gay' lit, attend 'pride parade,' change beliefs, WorldNetDaily July 22, 2010

Keeton VNR from ADF Media Relations on Vimeo.

Pope Benedict is Writing a Book About the Infancy of Jesus

Friday, July 23, 2010

Hatred of Heresy Is Good!

The Obama admin Reduces Funding for Faith-Based AIDS Programs

While I don't believe that individuals or organizations should be totally reliant on the government for funding I also don't think getting some help from the government is wrong either. I really hope they figure out about getting additional funding for the AID's patients. My prayers are with those that are HIV/AIDS patients undergoing treatment and also those who help aid in their treatment. With help from God, I hope and pray that they attain the additional necessary funding soon.

VIENNA (CNS) -- Large reductions in funding for AIDS work around the world are putting at risk the lives of people who depend on faith-based organizations for care, treatment and support, warned Catholic activists and others participating in the XVIII International AIDS Conference.

Results from a rapid assessment of 19 faith-based organizations working on AIDS in poor countries was conducted in June by the Ecumenical Advocacy Alliance, which announced the results at a July 21 news conference.

The study found that all but two of the agencies surveyed were already experiencing at least a flat-lining of funding. Some had already been forced to make cutbacks in the past six months while others had been warned that cuts in funding levels are about to be announced.

Becky Johnson, the researcher who compiled the report, said funding cuts to faith-based groups could devastate poor areas of the world, such as sub-Saharan Africa, where such organizations provide up to 70 percent of health care and HIV-related services.

U.S. Maryknoll Father Richard Bauer, executive director of Catholic AIDS Action, a program of the Namibian bishops' conference, expressed concern that he may soon be forced to chose who lives and who dies.

"We provide support for over 14,000 orphans, and this cut in funding forces me to ask which child I have to say no to. What are the criteria? Is it the poorest kids, the HIV-positive kids, do we do psycho-social assessment, or what?" Father Bauer asked. "The donors say I've got to cut 20 percent, and I need their help in figuring out where. But when I ask, they respond with deafening silence."

Father Bauer's largest single funder is the U.S. President's Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief, or PEPFAR, created in 2003. The priest said PEPFAR has told him to expect a decline in funds through 2015. That cut is rumored to be 20 percent, Father Bauer said, while the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria, another major donor, has indicated that he will soon lose an initial 10 percent, with more cuts likely to follow.

"PEPFAR wants to fund the government because they see that as more sustainable. Excuse me, but the government of Namibia came into existence only in 1990, whereas the church has been there for hundreds of years. If you're really interested in sustainability, then fund the church," Father Bauer told Catholic News Service.

The phrase "Treatment 2.0" debuted in Vienna, pushed by people such as Microsoft co-founder Bill Gates and former U.S. President Bill Clinton as code for doing more with less, for being smarter in carrying out programs. Yet Father Bauer said it does not apply to his programs.

"Everyone is talking Treatment 2.0 and that we have to be smarter. In some of the larger NGOs and government programs, they can do that. But faith-based organizations like the one I work with have no padding in the budget. We run things on a shoestring. Out of a sense of justice and integrity I never padded our budget. It's already bare bones. I put in there just what I needed to provide services," he said.

"Yet we just got a 17 percent increase in our electricity cost. There's a petrol increase. And salaries have to go up at least 5 percent a year if we want to keep qualified staff. My fixed costs are going up, and the funding is going down. Yet they say, 'Be smarter.' Well, I give them my budget and say, 'How do I do that?' Because I don't have the answer," he said, adding, "I think the faith-based organizations have been smarter all along." CONTINUED

Monday, July 19, 2010

The Reuters Deception -- Hide Religion of Persons Who Murdered Priest's Family

Jihad Watch points out that Reuters displays unethical journalism in refusing to name the murderers religion- Islam. In Nigeria, Muslims with machetes killed a priest's family and burned the Church. Reuters makes a point to ensure that you have knowledge when a Muslim is a victim but goes way out of its way to hide the reality when "peaceful" Muslims hurt or kill person/persons. Reuters need to simply do their job -- report the news, report the facts. But, it is crystal clear that Reuters and other MSM outlets have a Pro-Muslim and Anti-Christian bias. It is so sad that his family was murdered, and so brutally. I will be keeping both the Nigerian priest and the souls of his family members who were murdered in my prayers.

Sunday, July 18, 2010

Exploring Nicomachean Ethics by Aristotle Part 1

I have been delving deeper into various philosophical works. I have started reading NICOMACHEAN ETHICS by Aristotle ( translated by W.D. Ross) and have found the it quite interesting.

Here is the first few paragraphs:

EVERY art and every inquiry, and similarly every action and pursuit,
is thought to aim at some good; and for this reason the good has
rightly been declared to be that at which all things aim. But a
certain difference is found among ends; some are activities, others
are products apart from the activities that produce them. Where
there are ends apart from the actions, it is the nature of the
products to be better than the activities. Now, as there are many
actions, arts, and sciences, their ends also are many; the end of
the medical art is health, that of shipbuilding a vessel, that of
strategy victory, that of economics wealth. But where such arts fall
under a single capacity- as bridle-making and the other arts concerned
with the equipment of horses fall under the art of riding, and this
and every military action under strategy, in the same way other arts
fall under yet others- in all of these the ends of the master arts
are to be preferred to all the subordinate ends; for it is for the
sake of the former that the latter are pursued. It makes no difference
whether the activities themselves are the ends of the actions, or
something else apart from the activities, as in the case of the
sciences just mentioned.

If, then, there is some end of the things we do, which we desire for
its own sake (everything else being desired for the sake of this), and
if we do not choose everything for the sake of something else (for
at that rate the process would go on to infinity, so that our desire
would be empty and vain), clearly this must be the good and the
chief good. Will not the knowledge of it, then, have a great influence
on life? Shall we not, like archers who have a mark to aim at, be more
likely to hit upon what is right? If so, we must try, in outline at
least, to determine what it is, and of which of the sciences or
capacities it is the object. It would seem to belong to the most
authoritative art and that which is most truly the master art. And
politics appears to be of this nature; for it is this that ordains
which of the sciences should be studied in a state, and which each
class of citizens should learn and up to what point they should
learn them; and we see even the most highly esteemed of capacities
to fall under this, e.g. strategy, economics, rhetoric; now, since
politics uses the rest of the sciences, and since, again, it
legislates as to what we are to do and what we are to abstain from,
the end of this science must include those of the others, so that this
end must be the good for man. For even if the end is the same for a
single man and for a state, that of the state seems at all events
something greater and more complete whether to attain or to
preserve; though it is worth while to attain the end merely for one
man, it is finer and more godlike to attain it for a nation or for
city-states. These, then, are the ends at which our inquiry aims,
since it is political science, in one sense of that term.

Does the State have a greater cause than man? Should the State really dictate to man what is right and what is wrong? And to what extent, if so? How much should the State interfere into our lives?

Raphael Tapestries in London for Pope's Visit

From TheTapestryHouse:

Only seven of the ten original Cartoons, produced by Raphael, for the Sistine Chapel Tapestries, survive today. The Raphael Tapestries, as they have since become known, were created during the High Renaissance, and were commissioned, around 1515, by Pope Leo X. It is believed that the Raphael Tapestries were completed one year later, towards the end of 1516. This is because a final payment was recorded, made to Raphael, on December 20th, of that year. The Raphael Tapestries were first displayed in the Sistine Chapel, during the Christmas celebrations of 1519. It should be remembered, even though Raphael had completed the Cartoons for the Tapestries, they still had to be woven!

Today, the only surviving, drawn to scale, full size Cartoons, of the Raphael Tapestries, are on display at the Victoria and Albert Museum, situated in London, England. The Raphael Tapestries were only hung, in the Sistine Chapel, during important ceremonies. However, they were pillaged, just over ten years later, during the ‘Sack of Rome’, which occurred on May 6th, 1527. It is believed that the original Raphael Tapestries were burned, to retrieve the precious metals, usually woven into Tapestries of this caliber. Or, the Tapestries were cut into pieces and dispersed around Europe. There is a great possibility that both are true. It was customary, during these times, for the Victor to confiscate the Tapestries of the defeated party, and cut them down.

The Raphael Tapestries depicted scenes from the Gospels. Specifically, the Life of Saint Peter and Saint Paul, as described in the Acts of the Apostles. Four, of the ten original, Raphael Tapestries were dedicated to the Life of Saint Peter. The four Tapestries were, “The Death of Ananias”, “The Miraculous Draught of Fishes”, “The Handing Over of the Keys” and “The Healing of the Lame Man”. The six remaining Raphael Tapestries were dedicated to the life of Saint Paul; “The Conversion of Saint Paul”, “Saint Paul in Prison”, “Saint Paul Preaching in Athens”, “The Blinding of Elymas, the Sorcerer”, “The Sacrifices in Lystra” and “The Stoning of Saint Peter”.

Friday, July 16, 2010

Midnight Call

Mixing Mass and Soccer is Sacrilegious

From CatholicCulture: "Bishop Joseph Punt of Haarlem-Amsterdam has suspended a parish priest, Father Paul Vlaar, who wore orange vestments-- the color of the Netherlands’ World Cup team-- during Sunday Mass on July 11. Father Vlaar also acted as a goalkeeper during Mass, standing in front of a goal as a parishioner kicked a soccer ball down the aisle."

“On Sunday 11 July, Pastor Paul Vlaar of Obdam celebrated the Holy Eucharist in the spirit of the Football World Cup, wearing an orange chasuble, and did insufficient justice, in text and form, to the sanctity of the Eucharist,” a diocesan statement noted. “The footage of this has caused indignation among faithful here and abroad.”

This is outrageous, that a priest would think that this acceptable. Thank goodness the Bishop has taken a stand. Apparently Father Vlaar has been warned about his profane behavior before.

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

The Long Goodbye

Medjugorje Visionaries May Appear Before Vatican

"The Vatican commission that studies apparitions at Medjugorje is considering whether or not to question the six visionaries. The official Italian agency ANSA has revealed this.

They want them to speak about the Virgin's message and of the alleged secrets she revealed to them. In August of 1982 visionaries spoke in front of another commission founded by the bishop, but did not want to reveal the supposed secrets.

Benedict XVI started this new commission in March of 2010 to shed light on the alleged appearances of the Virgin that since 1981 have taken place at Medjugorje, Bosnia-Herzegovina.

Italian Cardinal Camillo Ruini heads the commission. It has 16 experts in fields such as Mariology, apparitions of the Virgin and psychology.

The visionaries' answers will be decisive in clarifying if the Virgin really appeared at Medjugorje, a city that has turned into Europe's third most important religious place. And each year more than 1 million people visit."

For many years I have been an advocate spreading both the message of Medjugorje and for Mary to be considered the Mediatrix and Coredemptrix of all graces.

Monday, July 12, 2010

Catholic Professor Fired For Being Faithful To Church Teaching on Homosexuality

This is against our first amendment rights. Dr. Howell is a faithful Catholic who has been persecuted for his religious beliefs. He was explaining the Catholic Church's beliefs with regards to homesexuality and homesexual acts in a course on Roman Catholicism. The Catholic Church believes that homosexual acts are sinful. It was his choice to take the course. If he was so offended by Catholic beliefs then he shouldn't have taken the course.


"The local press has published the email of Dr. Howell’s that prompted the student complaint as well as the complaint itself. It’s pretty clear that the university chose a poorly presented student complaint (who did not even understand what was being taught) over Dr. Howell’s reasonable and rational presentation of the material.

As Catholics, we can’t allow this injustice to stand. If a university can have valid grounds for firing a professor as upstanding a this one for an opinion so universally held by the Church, other universities will be able to gradually push out faithful Catholic teachers from their institutions once they decide the positions taken by the Church and being defended by such-and-such a teacher are inconvenient or offensive.

I am happy to know that the Alliance Defense Fund is representing Dr. Howell and that they are in the process of deciding how best to proceed legally.

In the meantime, there is something we can do.

Let’s swamp the University of Illinois Public Affairs office with emails from concerned Catholics letting them know how offensive and unjust it is to fire a teacher simply for being Catholic. You can contact them at"

Sunday, July 11, 2010

Bishops Clarify What Catholic Church Says on Abortion and Tough Cases

On June 23, 2003 the Bishops released this clarification on hard cases:

From LifeNews “On November 5, 2009, medical personnel at the St. Joseph's Hospital and Medical Center in Phoenix, Arizona, performed a procedure that caused the death of an unborn child. Most Reverend Thomas Olmsted, the Bishop of Phoenix, has judged that this procedure was in fact a direct abortion and so morally wrong….”

The Committee on Doctrine reminded us that “…. abortion (that is, the directly intended termination of pregnancy before viability or the directly intended destruction of a viable fetus) is never permitted… One may never directly kill an innocent human being, no matter what the reason… By contrast, in some situations, it may be permissible to perform a medical procedure on a pregnant woman that directly treats a serious health problem but that also has a secondary effect that leads to the death of the developing child… The difference can be seen in two different scenarios in which the unborn child is not yet old enough to survive outside the womb.”

“In the first scenario, a pregnant woman is experiencing problems with one or more of her organs, apparently as a result of the added burden of pregnancy. The doctor recommends an abortion to protect the health of the woman… The surgery directly targets the life of the unborn child. It is the surgical instrument in the hands of the doctor that causes the child's death. The surgery does not directly address the health problem of the woman, for example, by repairing the organ that is malfunctioning… The abortion is the means by which a reduced strain upon the organ or organs is achieved. As the Church has said many times, direct abortion is never permissible because a good end cannot justify an evil means....”

“In the second scenario, a pregnant woman develops cancer in her uterus. The doctor recommends surgery to remove the cancerous uterus as the only way to prevent the spread of the cancer… The woman's health benefits directly from the surgery, because of the removal of the cancerous organ. The surgery does not directly target the life of the unborn child. The child will not be able to live long after the uterus is removed from the woman's body, but the death of the child is an unintended and unavoidable side effect and not the aim of the surgery. There is nothing intrinsically wrong with surgery to remove a malfunctioning organ. It is morally justified when the continued presence of the organ causes problems for the rest of the body.”

“Surgery to terminate the life of an innocent person, however, is intrinsically wrong… Nothing, therefore, can justify a direct abortion. No circumstance, no purpose, no law whatsoever can ever make licit an act which is intrinsically illicit, since it is contrary to the Law of God which is written in every human heart, knowable by reason itself, and proclaimed by the Church.”

May the Law of God, proclaimed by our Church and through our bishops, inspire each of us to work for the protection of every human person, mother and child alike.

So, this clarification made by the USCCB makes clear that Bishop Olmstead was following Church teaching and Sister Margaret Mary McBride dissented from Church teaching.

Friday, July 9, 2010

Catholic Culture Clash 7-9-10

Sexual lyrics linked to pre-coital activities.

Kagan's "Don't ask Don't Tell" policies.

Cardinal Schonborn desecrates Mass

Scientists have developed 'fake' blood for use on battlefield.

Women's ordination is a grave offense, and sex abuse news.

Latin Mass

Church Abuse Scandal, New York Times & the Problem with “hucusque vigens”

A canon lawyer and The New York Times are in agreement - that the Church's canon-law system exacerbated the sex abuse crisis in the United States.

Nicholas P. Cafardi, a canon lawyer, explains why he agrees with the New York Times article called,“Church Office Failed to Act on Abuse Scandal,”:

It is rare when issues of canon law make the front page of the New York Times and even more rare when the secular media gets their canonical issues right. But the Times story of July 2, 2010, “Church Office Failed to Act on Abuse Scandal,” did just that. As the Times reported, it truly was a failure in the church’s canon-law system that exacerbated, if it did not help to cause, the clergy child sex-abuse crisis in the United States.

When the crisis first broke in the mid-1980s, U.S. canon lawyers (me among them) thought that the new Code of Canon Law, promulgated in 1983, limited the canonical prosecutions of priests who had sexually abused minors to crimes that were reported within five years of their occurrence. The new canon 1362 said that the statute of limitations on such crimes was five years after their commission.

The problem with that statute, of course, is that it takes children much longer than five years to come to terms with an instance of abuse and begin to tell people about it. The literature suggests that the average time for a child to figure out exactly what was done to them, how wrong it was, that it was not their fault, and that they have nothing to fear from telling people about it, is about twenty years. So a five-year statute on child sexual-abuse crimes is unrealistic to begin with. CONTINUED

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

CHA Feared Government More than Bishops

Should these rogue nuns who persist on disregarding our Bishops' authority on matters of faith and morality, such as abortion, be reprimanded in some fashion?