This video is a bit long, but well worth watching.
I won’t go into the details because I don’t know the details, and also because I can see from a distance that the details are rife with petty malice, self-righteous viciousness and lies.
It seems that Pope Francis kissed somebody’s hand and one of my colleagues said something about heresy and, of course, the money changer christians are all in a big kerfluffle because the Pope, once again, spoke out in favor of the poor. What’s more, he did this in direct violation of their true theology.
That theology is the self-serving, greed-driven Ayn-Rand-derived neo-con economic theory/theology that is being put on the altars of a lot of Christians’ hearts these days. It is being blessed and promoted in direct contradiction to the teachings of the law and the prophets and Christ the Lord by sin-sick clergy who are twisting the Scriptures to suit the politics of the destructive wing-nuts on the right of the political spectrum.
I’ve written extensively about the wing-nuts on the left of the political spectrum and their Gospel-twisting clergy. But from what little I know, this particular hate-off was fueled and carried forth by the right-wing-nuts of today’s culture/politics-worshipping fallen (little c) christianity.
I’m quite certain that a lot of Public Catholic’s readers are going to come at me with pitchforks and torches for saying this, but my friends, you have got to choose. Follow Christ, or follow the apologists of your political party. You can not serve them both and you cannot follow them both.
On the one hand, we have the arguments of those who buttress claims that Jesus really supports abortion, gay marriage, euthanasia, etc. They use distorted lying interpretations of Scripture to support what is in fact, anti-Christ. On the other hand, we have those who claim that Jesus really supports transferring the wealth of the people into the hands of a few greedy campaign donors and impoverishing the people of this great nation in the process. They use their own distorted, lying interpretations of Scripture to support what is also and in fact, anti-Christ.
What is the difference between them?
They are two sides of the same coin. And they both are leading people down the wide path that goes straight to a hell that exists on this earth and in the next life simultaneously. We are making a hell of this heaven with our politicized christianities.
You cannot — can not — follow either of these heretical (there’s that word) — self-serving, false and evil wing nut christianities and follow Jesus. It is not possible. It cannot be done.
Choose this day, people. Choose who you will serve. Will you walk down the wide road of political expedience and ez-pz morality crafted by the lying liars of politicized little c christianity? Or will you and your house serve the Lord?
The christianity being taught by the wing nuts on both sides of the political spectrum is not the Christianity that leads to eternal life. This bastardized christianity is from the pit, and it leads straight back to the pit. There is no life in these teachings; no Gospel, no Jesus. They come from people who have sold their souls to the political store. Their words are justifications of evil. They are teachings for and about themselves, their greed, and their fallenness. They are not in any way about Him.
Which is why their fruit is lynch mob carrying-on on the internet and in other places. Their fruit is death, dissolution, impoverishment of the many for the few and destruction. They lead people into self-righteousness and crazy viciousness. They fuel slander, malice, envy and an endless cycle of cruel, hate-filled attacks that resemble a debauch more than a discussion.
The internet is full of what amounts to verbal orgies of hatred, directed in the name of Christ — in the name of Christ — at anyone who disagrees with the gospel of wing-nut political christianity.
I looked over the rim of my week off and saw the destructive hate-off. I saw it and I thought, there they go again. I can tell you that from that safe distance it was clear to me that satan was running the show. We are living in times when our world is falling away from Christ. The exhortations and temptations to fall with it are varied and many. But the most sinister come from fallen christians who try to induce us to live by the world’s lights while proclaiming that we are following Him.
Is that heresy? I don’t know. I’m not theologian enough to say. But it is blasphemy. It is taking the Lord’s name in vain. Of that I am entirely certain.
Here, for your delectation, are a few random quotes, pulled from my rather spotty memory. Read them and think. And stop supporting fallen religious leaders and political demagogues who have the temerity to lecture God on morality.
Cboose. This. Day.
Who said that?
Money is the root of all of evil.
It is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle than a rich man to enter the kingdom of God.
Do not store up treasures on earth … store up treasures in heaven … for where your treasure is, there will your heart be also.
If you have done it to the least of these, you have done it to me.
You cannot serve both God and money.
My house shall be called a house of prayer, but you are making it a den of robbers.
But the deceitfulness of riches and desire for other things enter in and choke the word and it becomes unprofitable.
What does it profit a man to gain the whole world and forfeit his own soul?
Who said that?
Whoever loves money never has money enough; whoever loves wealth is never satisfied.
The love of money is the root of all kinds of evil.
Do not be hard hearted or tight fisted toward your poor brothers and sisters.
You have hoarded wealth in the last days. The wages you failed to pay the workmen who mowed your fields are crying out against you.
If a man shuts his ear to the cry of the poor, he too will cry out and not be answered.
He who mocks the poor shows contempt for his maker.
The righteous care about justice to the poor, but the wicked have no such concern.
He who is kind to the poor lends to the Lord.
A fortune made by a lying tongue is a fleeting vapor and a deadly snare.
Do not exploit the poor because they are poor and do not crush the needy in court, for the Lord will take up their case and will plunder those who plunder them.
Wealth is worthless in the day of wrath.
The Vatican Mistresses, a group of 26 women who either are or want to be having sexual affairs with Catholic priests, sent a letter to Pope Francis asking him to allow their lovers to marry them.
This isn’t the first time a group of women who are having affairs with priests have written a pope. Pope Benedict got a similar letter.
I could respond to this in quite a few ways, but I think I’ll focus on the fantasy life of these women. Evidently they, along with their sisters who wrote the earlier letter, have bought the lie their boyfriends are telling them. They believe that these guys want to marry them, and are dissuaded from doing so because … well … because they are priests who have taken some sort of vow.
First of all, ladies, if these guys were all that serious about their vows, you wouldn’t be writing this letter in the first place. The reason? You wouldn’t be having an affair with the guy, and neither would anybody else.
Second, if he wanted to marry you, he would.
So far as I know, there aren’t any bishops standing outside parish rectories with AK-47s, keeping your boyfriends locked inside. They can leave any time they want.
They don’t leave because they’ve got a good deal. They have all the respect and adulation that Catholics heap on their priests, the immense authority and freedom of action that is part and parcel of being a pastor, and lots of boys’ nights out and camaraderie with the other priests. Their bills are paid, the health insurance is up to date and gifts and goodies from adoring parishioners rain down on them steadily.
And they’ve got you on the side.
In the words of Dustin Hoffman’s character in Little Big Man, they’re not just playing Indian, they’re living Indian. Or, as we say it here in Oklahoma, they’ve got a bird’s nest on the ground.
The person whose life is truncated is you, girlfriend. The person who is paying the price for this whole affair is, well, you. You are the one who has taken herself off the dating market to languish in the shadows. Your lover is standing at the front of the church, holding the Host aloft while the choir sings Amen. He’s the belle of the ball, and you are the little match girl, looking in.
If he wants to marry you, he can do it. He just doesn’t want to.
Because he’s got it pretty good as things are.
So, ladies, my advice to you is to stop being stupid. Let your collared lover find himself someone else to believe him. Stop gathering at closed Facebook pages to support one another in this waste of your lives. Don’t write any more letters to the Pope.
Dump you boyfriend and get on with the business of looking for a man who is willing and capable of loving you back out in the sunshine, in front of the whole wide world.
Stop thinking that Pope Francis is the reason you’re living like this. Because Pope Francis has nothing to do with it. You’re deluding yourselves ladies, and that alone is the reason for your dilemma.
If he wanted to marry you, he would.
From The Daily Beast:
A group of women claiming to be the secret paramours of priests have written to Pope Francis to urge him to roll back the church’s celibacy requirements.
A popular pontiff, Pope Francis receives hundreds of letters every day—but a recent one, signed by 26 women who would like his permission to have sex with their priest-boyfriends, was undoubtedly not like most of the others.
The letter, published on Vatican Insider website on Sunday, began with a plea for the pontiff to take heart and make celibacy optional for the signatories’ paramours, who happen to be priests. “Dear Pope Francis, we are a group of women from all over Italy (and further afield) and are writing to you to break down the wall of silence and indifference that we are faced with every day,” wrote the women (who signed with their first names and a last initial). “Each of us is in, was or would like to start a relationship with a priest we are in love with.” Their phone numbers were also apparently made available in case the pope would like to call the women.
The women, who reportedly met up on a closed Facebook group, say they represent only a “small sample” of an apparently large group of secret lovers of priests. According to Vatican Insider, the letter noted, “a lot has been said by those who are in favour of optional celibacy but very little is known about the devastating suffering of a woman who is deeply in love with a priest. We humbly place our suffering at your feet in the hope that something may change, not just for us, but for the good of the entire Church.”
The women admitted that they knew it was wrong to enter into amorous relationships with priests, and implied that, at least to some extent the priests respected their vows of chastity, but added, “in most cases, despite all efforts to renounce it, one cannot manage to give up such a solid and beautiful bond. Unfortunately, this brings with it all the pain of not being able to live it fully.”
I started not to write about this. It’s one of those stories that I don’t like one bit.
Evidently a very young Jacqueline Bouvier met Father Joseph Leonard when she was in Dublin in 1950. This was three years before she married Senator and future President John F Kennedy.
She and the priest became friends and she corresponded with him at key points in her life — when she suffered a miscarriage in 1956 and later after the assassination of President Kennedy in early 1964. The letters were based on friendship, but they were also part of a pastoral relationship in which she discussed her faith.
Jacqueline Kennedy would not be the first public person who confided in a priest because she believed the priest wouldn’t gossip about her. Sadly, she’s also not the first person to be disappointed in this belief.
Now, these personal letters are on the auction block and their contents are being published everywhere.
Does no one but me see that this is wrong?
Father Joseph Leonard and Jacqueline Bouvier, 1950. Photo Source: Boston Globe
Why did Father Leonard keep these letters? I wrote earlier today that I will never talk about the private things that my constituents have shared with me through the years. I didn’t say, but it is true that I am also going to destroy any records of these conversations as soon as I leave office, such as phone calls or follow-ups related to them. Those are all I have, since I do not write down the personal things people tell me, and I do not keep their letters in which they confide deep things from their lives.
Not one word my constituents told me will ever surface.
I do not understand priests who gossip about their parishioners, especially when they talk about the gut wrenching things that people share with them. Jacqueline Bouvier Kennedy’s letters were clearly written not just to a friend, but to a friend who was a priest, because he was a priest. No one but the priest should ever have seen or heard about them. They certainly should not be on the auction block to make money.
From Catholic News Service:
DUBLIN (CNS) — Newly released letters between former U.S. first lady Jacqueline Kennedy and a Dublin-based priest reveal Kennedy’s struggles to keep her faith after her husband’s assassination.
The letters exchanged by Kennedy and Vincentian Father Joseph Leonard, who died in 1964, are set to be auctioned in Dublin in June. Excerpts were published in The Irish Times newspaper.
I am leaving the Oklahoma legislature. Last week was a week of formal goodbyes.
I gave a farewell speech to the House, which you can watch, if you’d like. Go here to see the video. The House Democrats held their annual Sine Die Party, and roasted me and other departing legislators. The Democratic Legislative Assistants prepared a delicious luncheon (Covered dish. All their best cooking. It was to die for.) with a cake with all our names and said another round of good-byes. I even got a small — and lovely — good-bye editorial in the Oklahoman.
We are still in the busiest time of the legislative process. We haven’t shut down. Not at all. That means I’m going to be tres busy until we actually do sine die. (Sine die is the motion we make to adjourn the legislative session.) But I am grateful beyond words to my colleagues for giving me these many avenues of good-bye.
Each of these things is a rite of passage for what has to be a huge transition in my life. Leaving the legislature is a little bit like a soldier, coming home from a war. You are leaving a combative, total environment which engages you on every level and returning to a world that now seems out of kilter by comparison.
Wherever people are for a period of time, that becomes their normal. Normal for me has long ago become the totally unreal world of elected politics.
At the same time, I am way past glad to be leaving. God gave me something like marching orders for the rest of my life a few years ago when I was sitting in the cathedral at Fatima. I’ve dithered since then, occupied and preoccupied by the legislative wars and the many needs of my constituents. If you don’t think that these things are a 24/7 occupation that devours of all your thoughts and passions, then, you my friend, have never been a legislator.
Those of us who legislate or who have legislated know that there are very few jobs that swallow you whole like legislating does. It is difficult to disengage enough to maintain your friendships and family and retain something of your personality.
As for fulfilling the call that God gave me, I found it well nigh impossible. I need more than corners of time in my days to write the things He wants me to write. I’m not going to discuss in detail what I think this is all about. I have a lot of praying to do first.
I do know that I am not going to abandon the political process. I am also not going to stop writing about the intersection of public life and Christianity on this blog. I will, if anything, be a lot more free to talk about these issues now that I’m not bound to protect the privacy of so many people.
That is not to say that I will be talking about closed door conversations with my colleagues or divulging the almost endless private things that my constituents have shared with me through 18 years of elected office.
I have represented, cared for and cared about thousands of people for a very long time. In the course of that, many of them have opened their souls to me. I have never and I will never talk about the people who trusted me to be their voice in government and who honored me by opening their lives and hearts to me in conversations that were in fact and in truth non-sacramental confessions.
All these things I take with me to my grave.
What I will talk about is the intersection of public policy and publicly stated comments, actions, etc. I’ve operated for a long time using the standard that if something is published and circulated publicly, I can talk about it. That won’t change. It will, rather, be enhanced by the fact that I know what’s behind these things. I will be a lot less guarded in my opinions in the future when I do not have the responsibility for many thousands of people on my shoulders.
Christians in America have a mountain in front of us. After more than two hundred years of having things our way, we are faced with a society in which we are beleaguered. We live in post Christian America. Our task is to re-convert our nation to Christ. Right now, we are not up to that task. We are, in fact, confused, divided and overawed by our opposition.
That’s what I’m going to write about. Because somebody needs to do it. And because I am uniquely qualified for the job.
My favorite Representative Hamilton photo. From Rose Day 2014.
I tried to remember to thank everyone in this speech, but I somehow forgot to mention — even though I wrote their names down and they were right in front of me — two of the most important people. Louise Scoles, who fought for my election and was my sponsor when I entered the Catholic Church. And George Violette, my brother by another mother, who is family in every way except blood. I love both of you.
The “Tony” I introduce in the video is Tony Lauinger, president of Oklahomans for Life and Vice President of National Right to Life. He is my friend. I know that he will remain my friend after I leave office.
If you want to watch the speech, go here.
Pope Francis does it his way.
In a complete departure from previous papal trips abroad, he is bringing two friends of other faiths along with him on his upcoming trip to the Holy Land.
Pope Francis’ longtime friends, Rabbi Abraham Skorka and Omar Abboud, a leader in Argentina’s Islamic community, will accompany him on his journey to the Holy Land later this week.
The Vatican spokesman called this a “novelty.” I think of it as a symbol of what this land of many faiths could, and hopefully one day will, be.
From The New York Daily News:
VATICAN CITY – A rabbi and a Muslim leader will join Pope Francis on his upcoming trip to the Holy Land, the first time an official papal delegation has included members of other faiths, the Vatican said Thursday.
Francis’ two longtime friends and collaborators from his days as archbishop of Buenos Aires, Rabbi Abraham Skorka and Omar Abboud, a leader of Argentina’s Islamic community, are on the official delegation for the May 24-26 trip to Jordan, the West Bank and Israel.
The Vatican spokesman, the Rev. Federico Lombardi, said their presence on the delegation was an “absolute novelty” desired by Francis to show the “normality” of having friends of other faiths.
Skorka and then-Cardinal Jorge Mario Bergoglio together wrote “On Heaven and Earth,” which explores Jewish and Catholic perspectives on a host of issues. Abboud, meanwhile, was Bergoglio’s main Muslim interlocutor in Buenos Aires and recently participated in an Argentine interfaith pilgrimage tracing the key stops of Francis’ upcoming tour.
The Vatican has acknowledged that complaints listed in a canonical petition it received from alumni of Georgetown University are “well founded.”
What this means in real life, I’m not sure. Hopefully, it signals the beginning of a return to Catholic education at Catholic universities.
I, the undersigned, a Catholic in full communion with the Church, in keeping with the rights, duties and obligations of the Laity and the Christian faithful under the 1983 Code of Canon Law to make known our needs to our pastors through petition, to maintain communion with the Church, to perfect the order of temporal affairs, and legitimately to vindicate our rights in the Church, as well as the rights and duties we have under Article 4 of Ex corde Ecclesiae, we express our grave concern that our rights to know and follow the truth of the Catholic Church, to a Christian education, and others, have been violated by Georgetown University’s twenty-one year refusal to comply fully with the law of the Church through the implementation of the general norms of Ex corde Ecclesiae, and its eleven year non-compliance with certain particular norms adopted for the United States, which has led directly and indirectly to the tolerance and promotion of deviations from authentic doctrinal and moral teachings by Georgetown University authorities, a long series of Scandals to the faithful through actions inconsistent with a Catholic identity, and a growing threat to souls through the ever-spreading ideology of radical autonomy in Georgetown’s institutional initiatives, and to the academic freedom of professors and students in favor of new illiberal and intolerant orthodoxies. I, therefore, petition in the protection of my rights and in fulfillment of my duties in accord with Canon Law, for such relief to obtain the implementation of canon law and Ex corde Ecclesiae that has been requested by the Petition submitted by William Peter Blatty.
The Vatican replied to the petition on April 4. Here is the text of their letter to Mr Blatty from Archbishop Angelo Vicenzo Zani, the secretary for the Congregation for Catholic Education.
CONGREGATIO DE INSTITUTIONE CATHOLICA
(DE STUDIORUM INST!TUTIS)
Rome, 4 April 2014
Dear Mr. Blatty,
Further to our letters to you of 22 October 2013 and 19 December 2013, both with
the above protocol number, our Congregation has examined your petition for hierarchical
recourse in the matter of Georgetown University. We hereby notify you that:
(1) The matters to which you referred in your communications to this Dicastery
cannot be considered grounds for a hierarchical recourse, inasmuch as the
petitioner in such a recourse must be able to show that he/she has suffered an
objective change in his/her condition due to an administrative act.
(2) Your communications to this Dicastery in the matter of Georgetown University
instead constitute a well-founded complaint. Our Congregation is taking the issue
seriously, and is cooperating with the Society of Jesus in this regard.
Taking the opportunity to express to you our sentiments of consideration and
esteem, we remain
Sincerely yours in Christ,
Archbishop Angelo Vincenzo Zani
May 15 is the United Nation’s International Day of the Family.
Monsignor Vicenzo Paglia, the president of the Pontifical Council on the Family, will go to New York to address the United Nations for this event. He also had a few words to say in advance. He commented that people will say “forever” to a soccer team (or here in Oklahoma, to the Sooners) but to their own husband or wife, not so much.
The family has been sliced and diced almost out of existence by our modern culture. Now, it is being legally defined into meaninglessness. Without the family as a base, other forms of community fail alongside it.