Thursday, October 23, 2014

What Kind of Person Thinks Pope Francis is Corrupt?

Father Angel: (and if you're on Tumblr, you need to follow him)

The kind of person who does not understand that he is a slum priest, and believes his outreach to gays, divorced and remarried, single parents, drug addicts, immigrants, and the poor, is a phony and shallow attempt to please people, get the media to think he is a saint, and then use his popularity to overthrow 2000 years of Catholic Tradition on faith and morals.
Basically, haters gonna hate. Until Pope Francis is dead and cold, some Catholics will have their minds made up that he is not Catholic enough, and is doing damage to the Church, because he makes them feel uncomfortable with all his “novelty” and departures from the pastoral style of previous popes. 
The rest of us need to go on and press forward in the practice of faith, hope, and charity. We need to stop demanding from Francis that he lives up to our “litmus” test of a real pope. We need to dwell on the fact that most of the world considers Francis to be a force of good and a beacon for peace. Building on that enormous cache of goodwill which the Pope has built up, we need to stop fighting about him as a doctrinal teacher and accept him as a shepherd who is pushing us to be a missionary Church of joy and simplicity.

Synod Redux: Lessons for Conservatives

So much in this piece that hits the nail on the head.

What pope Francis is trying to do is combine doctrinal orthodoxy with pastoral sensitivity.

It's not enough to tell people they're wrong.

It's funny because pro-lifers have understood this for decades. You can't just tell a woman abortion is murder. You have to find the reasons for her desire for abortion, and help solve her problems.

But somehow this message of outreach and compassion is lost in the conservative Catholic blogosphere. All Pope Francis is trying to do is take what we've learned in the pro-life movement and apply it to the rest of the Church

How do we reach out to gays? How do we reach out to the divorce & remarried?

In sum, we need to learn this lesson:

To put it a bit differently, conservative Catholics tend to slip into the belief that we can convert people by arguing with them, while liberals believe they can convert people by agreeing with them. Both are wrong. To bring people into the Church we need to meet them, befriend them, listen to them, accompany them, evangelize them. That is the fundamental message of Pope Francis, and to drive home that message he is willing to tolerate—perhaps even to encourage—a raucous Synod meeting. 

And about that synod meeting.

Nobody seems to raise the possibility that perhaps Pope Francis is allowing Cardinal Kasper to speak because he thinks he's wrong, and this is how you destroy an argument.

You let the person advancing it make it.

Then you let everyone shoot it down.

Isn't this what happened at the Council of Nicea? Arian was allowed to make his point.

Then it was torpedoed.

Vigil to re-start Friday

Hello all

Things are back to normal on Bank Street, in fact the abortuary never stopped doing abortions, even when Bank Street was under lock down, they still continued work as usual.

The 40 Days for Life Bank Street vigil resumes at 7 am on Friday October 24. We will continue daily from 7 am to 7 pm until Sunday November 2nd.

Please make an effort to spend some prayer time at the vigil.

Vigil Cancelled for Today

The 40 Days for Life vigil will be cancelled again today due to a continued lockdown in the downtown core.

The vigil will resume when the situation goes back to normal.

Wednesday, October 22, 2014

40 Days for Life Cancelled Today in Ottawa for TODAY

I suppose this should go without saying, but 40 Days for Life vigil is canceled today due to today's lockdown.

Bank Street has been evacuated.

(I'm personally having a sick day so don't anticipate too much activity on my part).

EDITED TO ADD: The vigil is expected to return once the situation is resolved.

Monday, October 20, 2014

Cardinal Dolan: Pope Francis Isn't Trying to Bring People to the Church (...)

...He's trying to bring Church to the People:

Rather than ministering only to the officially worthy, minister to everyone—gay, divorced, disenchanted—and then worry about making them worthy. “Don’t lead with the chin, don’t lead with controversy,” Dolan said. “Don’t even lead with the mouth. Lead with the heart and you’re going to win a lot of people.”

That, of course, is not exactly how the Church worked before Francis came to town. During the last two pontificates, the rules came first, and often they tightened in response to cultural advances in the secular world. To many Catholics struggling with the pressures of real life in that real world, those rules meant Catholicism was an ever-more exclusive club where traditionalist prelates and Catholic fundamentalists could blackball anyone who couldn’t live by the rules. It was a Church in which homosexuals were “intrinsically disordered” and divorced and remarried Catholics were “adulterers.”

Leaving aside the mischaracterization of gays as "intrinsically disordered" (people are not intrinsically disordered) this parallels what I wrote about the purpose of the synod.

Sunday, October 19, 2014

Justin Trudeau Could Be Denied Communion: Ottawa Auxiliary Bishop

Love Bishop Riesbeck!

Ottawa's Auxiliary Bishop Christian Riesbeck has warned that there is a possibility that Canon Law 915 could be enforced against Justin Trudeau to deny him Holy Communion if he does not back off his decision to ban pro-life candidates from running for nominations to represent the Liberal Party of Canada in the next federal election.

Canon Law states that those who are "obstinately persevering in manifest grave sin are not to be admitted to Holy Communion.

"Out of concern for safeguarding the reverence that is due Our Lord in the Eucharist and to avoid scandal, one could possibly apply this norm even in the case of a pro-abortion Catholic politician who is extremely vocal about his position."

Very good step.

Always lots of talk about this but... never any action.

UPDATE: Catholic-Legate picked up the story and saw an FB comment  at the bottom of the article of someone who attended the same Mass as Trudeau. QUOTE:

the argument is, I think academic, on the several occasions I have been with him at Mass, he did not receive communion.

John writes:

Some smart reporter out there should ask him to confirm whether he is receiving Communion or not. And, if he isn’t, boy does the fun then begin.

Here's another possibility:

He doesn't care whether or not he receives Communion.

Maybe that would be even sadder.

VIDEO: Why Christianity Opposes Same-Sex Relations, But Not Pork-Eating

This Lutheran video explains it very clearly:

This Quote From Pope John Paul II on Homosexuals is A Propos

I just watched CTV News' coverage of the Synod.

And I just want to facepalm.

The Church has never been against welcoming anyone.

The Church is not so keen on people who have an agenda to change Church teaching.

The MSM characterized the mid-term report as "revolutionary".

When it's not at all.

Consider this quote from Pope St. John Paul II

The human person, made in the image and likeness of God, can hardly be adequately described by a reductionist reference to his or her sexual orientation. Every one living on the face of the earth has personal problems and difficulties, but challenges to growth, strengths, talents and gifts as well. Today, the Church provides a badly needed context for the care of the human person when she refuses to consider the person as a “heterosexual” or a “homosexual” and insists that every person has a fundamental Identity: the creature of God, and by grace, his child and heir to eternal life.

It makes it sound like Pope Francis has some unique agenda to make homosexuality acceptable.

That's far from the truth.

This is about meeting homosexuals where they are and help them conform their lives to the Church teaching.

Any other interpretation of the Synod is wrong.

On the Temptation of Hostile Inflexibility

From Pope Francis' message to the Synod Fathers:

And since it is a journey of human beings, with the consolations there were also moments of desolation, of tensions and temptations, of which a few possibilities could be mentioned: 
 - One, a temptation to hostile inflexibility, that is, wanting to close oneself within the written word, (the letter) and not allowing oneself to be surprised by God, by the God of surprises, (the spirit); within the law, within the certitude of what we know and not of what we still need to learn and to achieve. From the time of Christ, it is the temptation of the zealous, of the scrupulous, of the solicitous and of the so-called – today – “traditionalists” and also of the intellectuals.

I anticipate a lot of negative feedback on this point.

Faithful Catholics are right to be concerned about doctrinal orthodoxy.

Considering all the heresy and loss of faith, we have lots to complain about.

And when heresy raises its ugly head, we need to raise a ruckus.

 But sometimes, that insistence on doctrine leads to a lack of imagination.

I recently wrote about how sometimes conservatives often anticipate the reception their doctrinal announcements would receive by marginalized Catholics, so they figure: just state doctrine, let the chips fall where they may, and the onus is on the sinners to change, not for conservative Catholics to do anything.

That makes it all so easy, doesn't it? Present the doctrine, present the logical arguments, and if they don't get it, that's their affair. They have to carry the burden, all we have to do is proclaim and argue.

Pope Francis is saying: Try harder.

He doesn't want to change doctrine. But he doesn't want doctrinal orthodoxy to be an obstacle to thinking of creative ways to adapt to both doctrine and personal circumstances.

The conservative reflex on the divorced & remarried is that they can't have communion, end of story.

The Pope is saying: it's not end of story. What can we do for them?

That's where the surprises come in. This is where the pope demands that we be creative so that we get them to the goal of living in an acceptable situation.

I'm writing this because I've seen people get upset at the pope's comment.
Thinking that he's opposed to orthodoxy.

But that's not that at all. The Pope spoke against the temptation to neglect the Deposit of Faith (how long has it been since you heard a pope use that phrase!) and to come down from the cross.

Does this sound like the rantings of a liberal?

Sometimes I wish people would approach Pope Francis with the attitude that he has something to teach us.

That maybe being orthodox and demanding orthodoxy isn't enough.

We need to step up our game and try to find concrete ways to achieve all our goals.

In that sense, I think Pope Francis is a gift to the Church.

Instead of complaining about all the wrong he's done, let's try to work with him. He's really on our side.

Do we want a leader? Well, he's leading. I think he might be on to something.

Saturday, October 18, 2014

Justin Trudeau Tells of His Faith in God

From an article about his upcoming memoir:

Trudeau was raised a Catholic as a child, saying prayers and reading the Bible with his father and two brothers. By the time he was in his 20s, he had become a “lapsed Catholic.”

Then came the death of his younger brother, Michel, in a British Columbia avalanche in 1998. To help deal with his grief, he attended a course on Christianity.

“It came at exactly the right time. Trusting in God’s plan. For someone as rational and scientific and logical and rigorous as I am, to accept the unknowable and to re-anchor myself in faith was really, really important to me.”

“Since that moment, I still consider myself and have re-found myself of a deep faith and belief in God.”

Trudeau stresses he believes in the “separation of church and state” in his political thinking.

Some good priest needs to adopt him. A faithful priest.

A Google Translation of the Holy Father's Address to the Synod Fathers

UPDATE: Now in a proper translation.

UPDATE: EyeBeleave offers a rough translation.

Synod14 - 15th General Congregation: Speech by the Holy Father Francis for the conclusion of the Third Extraordinary General Assembly of the Synod of Bishops, 18/10/2014

Friday, October 17, 2014

ESPN Magazine Allows Snarky Question to QB About His Large Family

Alternate headline:

Man is challenged on his reproductive choices: Dad-shamed for producing so many children.

Hey folks, his body, his choice.


What the Heck is Pope Francis Trying to Accomplish With This Synod Anyway?

Last night I was having a conversation about Pope Francis and the Synod.

And I believe Pope Francis is deeply misunderstood.

I don't think people understand his motives.

I don't think faithful Catholics are fully confident about his orthodoxy.

Some people think that what's really trying to do is change the practice of distributing communion to the divorced & remarried.

But the Spanish bishops asked Pope Francis point blank about the issue, and he said the doctrine cannot be changed.

So it's highly unlikely the practice will change either.

So what the heck is Pope Francis trying to do with this synod anyway?

VIDEO: Synod Says No to Secular Agenda-- Cardinal Pell

Love that man. You need to watch this video and post it everywhere.

Thursday, October 16, 2014

Newfoundland Archbishop Hopes for Acceptance of Same-Sex Unions


In an interview with CBC's On the Go Tuesday, Archbishop Martin Currie said the church must uphold its teaching that marriage is between a man and a woman. 
But he added, "Hopefully we can find some accommodation where (same-sex) unions are accepted and respected and they can have a part in the church life."

This really needs some reaction.

I tweeted the Archdiocese of St. John's. 

This should not be left to stand, uncontested.

Perhaps There Is ONE Revolution Occuring in the Church

Perhaps There Is ONE Revolution Going On in the Church

Sorry I have't blogged in a little bit.

I apologize for that trite apology for not having blogged.

(How very Canadian of me!)

But this Synod14 has been keeping me glued to social media and the blogs.

Before this Synod happened, I was trying not to worry about it. And I'm ultimately NOT that worried, in the very long term (spoiler: God wins in the end). But like many Catholics, I was quite taken aback by some of the tendencies emerging in the relatio.

So I've been reading the #Synod14 hashtag, commenting on it, and some of my stuff has been retweeted. I even tweeted to Cardinal Napier my concerns about the Relatio, how it's being misinterpreted and manipulated, and how need absolute doctrinal clarity.

I've also conveyed my concerns to Msgr. Paul-Andre Durocher, the Canadian delegate to this synod.

I in no way wish to overstate my influence on Catholic matters, but I feel my little voice contributed to the chorus of rejection of this Relatio.

Cardinal Napier and Msgr. Durocher wouldn't know me from Adam.

But what they do know is that lay people have had strong enough reactions to impart their views to them.

I don't recall a single Vatican event that has been so intensely scrutinized or which has engendered so much immediate reaction.

I feel like us "normal" Catholics  here at the bottom of the pyramid are having some kind of impact on the Vatican.

For decades, it's felt like I have absolutely zero impact on Church affairs.

But in the age of blogs, social media and instaneous reaction and connection, I finally feel like somebody is listening and that I can make a difference.

Now some might scoff at the idea that faithful Catholics have any kind of impact, considering the text of the Relatio. But think back 20 years ago before social media. This document might have been published and (if anyone had paid attention to it) it would have been passed off as Vatican fiat and us laity had nothing to say about it.

We were expected to take that crap.

Now, if something comes out the Vatican, and it's not up to snuff, the laity can do something about it. The Holy Press Office had the wisdom of creating a hashtag for this synod (#Synod14) and so anybody who wants to comment or pass on a story can do so.

There's also tons of commentary, and it's aggregated on sites like BigPulpit, Pewsitter and

I don't believe the laity have ever had a hand in formulating a Vatican document -- ever-- the way they are having an impact today.

The folks at the top understand that their next document has to do better. They know that if they don't communicate the correct message, there's going to be a lot of blowback and the faithful aren't going to take too well.

And while the faithful are not bishops, in this day and age, the faithful are very much the transmitters of Catholic doctrine and ideas-- in an age when many clergy shirk from stating Catholic doctrine plainly.

So it's a bad idea to tick them off. You want the bishops and the engaged lay people on the same page.

I suspect that a lot of bishops would have been upset at the Relatio regardless of lay reaction, but perhaps their opposition might have been less strong. When laity put things in plain language, instead of the politicalese that some clergy use, that strengthens them in their resolve. The truth is made clear.

Maybe this Synod might not be so bad after all.

Tuesday, October 14, 2014

QUOTATION: Jesus on the Cross

Archbishop Fulton J. Sheen
This figure upon the Cross is not a Gestapo inquisitor, but a Divine Physician, Who only asks that we bring our wounds to Him in order that He may heal them.

--Archbishop Fulton J. Sheen

Taken from The Catholic Breadbox.

Monday, October 13, 2014

There is No "Shift" on Homosexuality in the Catholic Church

Don't believe the hype.

The bishops really need to push for clarity in the final document.

Pastoral approaches are fine.

But liberal Catholics and secularists will distort the document to their own end.

Write about the pastoral attitudes that are needed.

Just repeat the Church's teaching on the issue being addressed so there is no confusion.

So remind people that homosexual relations are intrinsically disordered, all the while valuing people with such tendencies and what they can bring to the world.

QOTD on the Birth Control Pill

From Jonathan Eig, author of The Birth of the Pill:

One of the intended consequences of the pill is it puts all the responsibilities on women and men have gotten used to the idea that they don't have to do anything.

I don't know for sure if that was intended, but it's certainly been welcome.

The truth is, so long as there's a hookup culture, men will live as if contraception is the woman's problem.