Here’s How the Father of Lies Operates:

First the Dark Lord tells everyone that marriage doesn’t matter. “It’s only a piece of paper!” they cried. He encourages promiscuity, sexual ‘freedom’, adultery, fornication and co-habitation. “Marriage? What’s Marriage? Just an outdated institution to keep women barefoot and pregnant and in the kitchen.” Let’s get rid of marriage. Let’s make divorce no-fault, cheap and easy. Marry as many times as you want, but marriage? It’s only a piece of paper.

Once that lie is firmly established simply shift it the other way around. “Marriage? We all want to be married!” Women want to marry each other. Men want to marry each other. Marriage is wonderful! Why are you denying me the right to be married! I want to be married too! I deserve to be married! I want to be married and spend the rest of my life with the person I love! Marriage! Marriage! It’s a wonderful thing marriage! We all want to be married!

This is the tactic: First destroy the sacred, the beautiful and the true, then once you’ve replaced it with a lie make sure everyone wants it. The same thing happened with ordination. “The Church is clerical! All those clergy! We want to de-clericalize the church! Get rid of the hierarchy! Don’t you know the Bible teaches the ‘priesthood of ALL believers! You don’t need a priest to confess. You can go straight to God. Those priests! They’re all misogynistic pedophiles! Priests! Creepy old guys in dirty cassocks. Yucch! Who wants to be a priest? Nobody. Seminaries are empty. Good. Ordination is outdated…”

Then the proponents of women priests say, “Why can’t we be priests? We want to be priests too? How can you deny our gifts? We want equal rights! We should be ordained too. We should be priests. How can you deny married men the priesthood? Don’t you know the first priests were married? Don’t you know there is evidence that there were women priests in the early church?? I mean there is a picture of a person in the catacombs who might be a woman who has her hands raised in prayer just like a priest!!!”

That’s why you have to stick to the truth. You start giving in to the protesters–the people who scream and bitch and moan and complain? As soon as you do they’ll turn the tables and get you for exactly the opposite fault.

Don’t appease bullies–especially if they’re being nice.

Eliot in Love
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  • Martin Greene

    Father – excellent post!

  • Andy

    “Don’t appease bullies–especially if they’re being nice.”

    The irony is strong with this one.

  • ramblingmother

    I just want to comment and say how much I appreciate you speaking out and being firm but loving. I am not a Catholic and I can say as a protestant some of the Catholic beliefs are different to me but I stand with Catholics in excerise of faith in Jesus Christ, Son of God, Redeemer of sinful man and Creator and Sustainer of the Universe. As it has been said before particularly in response to HHS mandate, we are all Catholics now. Keep up the good fight, (and if I may call you) Brother.

  • Dana Whtite

    And gay “marriage” will not be the end of it. Why can’t someone marry two women? Or, why can’t a woman have two husbands? If you object, you’re discriminating against them. For that matter, why can’t I marry my horse?

  • Sharon

    How true! When I was in college in the late 1960′s I don’t know how many times I heard that “just a piece of paper” line. Sometimes it was put much more crudely.

  • joselyn

    Great post Padre, I enjoy your down to earth no nonsense way of putting things. :)

  • Mike

    Exactly. Add to that “Children are a burden, pregnancy a disease!” followed by “How can you object to IVF? We have a right to have children by any means!”

  • Mr. Patton

    Fallacious and misleading arguments of “truth” are easily detected with the simplest categorical syllogisms.

  • MT

    On women priests — my friend, Dale, has a wonderful retort. Most people who are pushing for women in the priesthood have little to no regard for the priestly faculties granted by the Church. Basically, they are all Liberals interested in either transforming or destroying the Church. They deny that absolution is truly granted by a priest during Reconciliation, they disbelieve in transubstantiation, denying that a priest is truly performing anything at all miraculous in the Mass. So Dales asks: if you don’t believe that a male priest is actually acting ‘in persona Christi’ when administering the sacraments or when saying the Mass, that the priestly faculties are virtually meaningless, that priests are essentially able to do nothing that the Church claims they can do, why on earth would you be pushing for a woman to NOT be able to do it as well?

  • Glenn Juday

    It’s amazing that there are some who react to the real subjects of Fr. Longenecker’s posts with their gaze pointed exclusively downward into the micro terrain. The point is that some people, often otherwise quite intelligent as they will be quick to tell you, are easily led by lies, and by an intelligence clearly superior to their own.

    Life is a chessboard with moves and countermoves, but it does have a third dimension. It’s the dimension of “What’s is it all for, what does it all mean?” Those questions can’t be addressed with tactical moves, no matter how brilliant. A malevolent intelligence at work in the world has come up with the brilliant strategy of letting the smart ones among us convince themselves that they are not being manipulated when they plainly, and quite predictably, are – that no superior intelligence is guiding outcomes in their lives into a predictable pattern according to a plan, when it clearly is. The rejoinder always is, “I’m smart, the Church is dumb and is only for dumb people, I have thought deep thoughts, and I want, deeply want, my life to be just like this.” At least until the consequences become obvious, and then the only sensible response, in their minds, is despair. And it is such a predictable, utterly predictable, and deadly dull script that they slavishly adhere to as an authentic expression of their complete liberation.

  • Ric E.

    Good re-joinder!

  • Ian

    May we all be worthy to be called children of God

  • Ian

    Fascinating analysis Fr. Longenecker.

  • David

    You never cease to amaze. I also am impressed by some of the responses. You have an erudite group of blog followers. It is rare that I do not learn something useful from this blog. Thank you for your evangelization.

  • tom


  • stephanie

    Exactly! That is the slippery slope.

  • C Brett Bode

    The Church of Jesus Christ teaches these Truths: God loves us more than we love ourselves. God understands us better than we understand ourselves. God knows better than we do what is good/bad for us. This is message of the Church down through the ages.

    God proposed the Truth to Adam & Eve; they spurned God’s Truth, and elected to embrace the lie of Satan. God gifted Mankind with a free will. The Lover does not command reciprocity; he sacrificially longs for its object to freely choose to love in return.

    The Church proposes Truths to mankind…….confronts mankind and his institutions with the truth eminating from scripture and tradition….appeals to the individual human conscience and through individual consciences to human institutions, public and private. The Church may not violate the human conscience- it is duty bound to propose, but may not impose.

    Mankind must choose whom to love; each of us must, by the exercise of our wills, carve out of the warp and woof of our earthly existance our eternal destiny. Christ’s Church, like its King, only proposes, sacrifices, and loves Mankind……proposing the truth humbly, honestly, and with full knowledge that the Holy Spirit, God Himself, guides/judges its message down through time.

    History shows that the Church has often lacked humility and strayed into the business of “imposing” its truths on mankind…. when it has done so, the result has been consequentually negative for the Church and God’s peoples.

  • Angel

    Very insightful! Father, please continue writing on the subject: “How the Father of Lies operates”. I would like to know your thoughts on why the Devil must replace truth with a counterfeit. – Peace

  • Angel

    You friend Dale is very smart! But is it possible that (in a weird way) some liberal female “wanna be priest”, do believe in the power of the priesthood? This is freaky – for it could possibly warp into wiccan magic!
    Perhaps, further investigation is needed. Perhaps, Dale should conduct a survey to find out if the liberal female priestesses believe that they possess the power of the priesthood.

  • Gregory

    Thanks for this.

    I remember what Archbishop Fulton Sheen said, “The truth is still the truth even if no one believes it. And a lie is still a lie even if everyone believes it.”

    The sad thing today is that most believe and embrace the lie.

  • Dianne

    Can your horse agree to marry you?
    And what is your position on polygamy? The bible supports it. Lots of examples of polygamous marriage in the bible.

  • Dianne

    if you don’t believe that a male priest is actually acting ‘in persona Christi’ when administering the sacraments or when saying the Mass,

    Why does the person acting ‘in persona Christi’ have to be male? The person so acting is likely to not match Christ in a number of other ways: he’ll probably be older, most likely not Jewish or even of Middle Eastern descent, will speak a different language, will wear different clothing, etc. Why focus on one trait as the only important one? Why not insist that all priests be Jewish or all priests be no older than 30 to match Christ more perfectly?

  • Fr. Dwight Longenecker

    Sexuality is integral to the personality in ways that dress, age or ethnic background are not.

  • Fr. Dwight Longenecker

    Most people on this blog are Catholics. We are not Bible only Christians.

  • Brad

    To put it bluntly, because your coyness is demanding it: because the Church is the bride of Christ, whom He died for and is now feasting with eternally. A woman shamming in persona Christi would be a lesbian, wedded to the Bride.

  • Dianne

    Now I’m confused. Catholics don’t use the Bible as their source document? Or, at least, not all of it? Saying you’re not “Bible only” suggests that you use tradition in addition to the Bible, rather than instead of the Bible, but the answer is only responsive to my question if you mean that you replace parts of the Bible with other tradition.

  • Dianne

    So then lesbians can’t be holy too?

  • Dianne


  • Craig

    1. People with same sex attraction can be holy; but if i identify myself as “gay” and support same sex acts then that is wrong (as if a heterosexual supported sex outside of marriage).
    2. The Catholic Church has written and oral traditions and teachings that may/may not be changed. The teachings on Sacred Scripture are seen related (Old to New Testaments) to the teachings. Without such authority (eg, the Church Magisterium), one can interpret Scripture a million ways! Example: one minister at a baptist place may interpret a verse one way, but a baptist minister down the street may not. There is no consistency or even more, no Sacred authority to go by. Only the Catholic Church has his (not even the Anglican or Orthodox). Pax tecum.

  • Craig

    Diane, check these examples ( use a king james bible for this one time):
    2 Peter 1:20-21
    1Timothy 3:15
    2 Thessal. 3:6
    Acts 8:30-31

    May the Holy Ghost and Mary guide and protect you!

  • Mark H.

    Why do you believe the Bible supports polygamy? There are also examples of incest, adultery, murder, betrayal, and all kinds of other sinful behaviors. That doesn’t mean that the Bible “supports” those behaviors, it just means that they occurred.

  • Craig

    Christ changed what was to be changed: no more kosher, no divorce.

  • Fr. Dwight Longenecker

    The Catholic Church is the authority which properly interprets Scripture. In this particular case the Catholic Church observes the polygamy of the patriarchs in the Old Testament and asks if this is normative as a rule for Christian marriage. From the Old Testament sources and New Testament sources and 2000 years of tradition the Catholic Church concludes that although there was polygamy in the Old Testament, this is not God’s perfect will for humanity. This is what I meant by the saying that we are not “Bible only” Christians. We consider the Bible to be authoritative, and can teach nothing contradictory to the Bible, but on the other hand, the Bible is a complex document and it is properly interpreted by expert Church authorities. A parallel is the US Constitution. The document is, itself, authoritative, but we rely on the Supreme Court to interpret and apply the Constitution for us.

  • Angel

    Are you talking about acting out the sexual perversion? If they act out the perversion, then it is a sin.

  • Angel

    The good priest meant “Sacred Tradition” not man-made tradition.

  • Kendra Shriver

    Oh, it makes me so happy when Protestants and Catholics encourage one another! I see so many tearing each others’ beliefs down and it is refreshing to focus on the similarities. God bless you, ramblingmother. ;-)

  • savvy

    It’s more like you adapt to the sacraments, they do not adapt to YOU.

  • Balin

    Marriage doesn’t matter if it’s about being “in love” and not about “Love”. People “in love” don’t need a piece of paper. People can fall in and out of love as often as they may without ever needing a piece of paper.

    I have been told ever since childhood that when two people fall “in love”, or are “in love” they get married. If marriage is about falling “in love” and not about “Love” then it should be no surprise that homosexuals are wanting what they want. They are only wanting what everyone else has. Fair is fair.

    It is easy to blame the Dark Lord for lots of things but how much of this marriage mess was tailor made for him by the Christian establishment’s misrepresenting marriage in the first place for many many years as a union between two people who fall “in love” or are “in love” and failing to address and explain what marriage truly is? And we can add divorce too. Since we have failed to distinguish between “in love” and “Love” why should we be surprised that people want to marry whenever they are “in love” and divorce when they are “out of love”? Including homosexuals.

    If Christians don’t understand the difference between “in love” and “Love” -which is why so many side with the homosexuals on this issue- we shouldn’t be surprised homosexuals and secularists don’t either. And we should be even less surprised that Satan uses this to his advantage and our detriment. Satan can and should be blamed for much, but how much are Christians responsible for making his job easier than it needs to be?

    And the same would apply to the other points raised in the blog. It’s not enough to blame Satan. We must also ask ourselves how we may have made his job easier. The priest abuse scandal sure didn’t make his job any harder.

    Yes, we must stick to the Truth. But what is the Truth? We can’t just say “stick to it”. We must also stick to explaining the Truth so that we know what it is. We mustn’t protest too much when Satan uses our confusing “in love” and “Love” to his advantage or his using the priest abuse scandal and cover up to his adavantage or any other softball we toss his way. That’s his job. We need to explain the Truth so we know what we are sticking to and thereby make Satan’s job harder and begin to stop and reverse the secular/atheistic mess we had a hand in creating.

  • Angel

    You said: “History shows that the Church has often lacked humility and strayed into the business of ‘imposing’ its truths on mankind….when it has done so, the result has been consequentually negative for the Church and God’s peoples.” So ARE YOU TALKING ABOUT THE CATHOLIC CHURCH?

    Jesus told us to go and preach to the world: “Going therefore, teach ye all nations; baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost.”- Matthew 28:19
    DID YOU GET THAT? Jesus said: ‘Teach ye all nations.’ Sound pretty imposing to me. Jesus said that He is ‘the way the truth and the life, no one gets to Father but by me.’ SOUND PRETTY IMPOSING AGAIN.
    What is your point, man? The Church is there to lead people into heaven. We who are in the Body of Christ believe in Heaven and Hell. We don’ t want people to go the hell, BECAUSE WE CARE. So we have to be imposing. We have to teach the truth, even if you don’t like it. Why? Because we believe in the WORD OF GOD. And He commanded us to preach the truth! Surprise, surprise, look at up in the Bible, it’s every where: the command to preach the truth! WHAT DO YOU BELIEVE IT?

  • Fr. Dwight Longenecker

    In online discussions the use of all capitals is equivalent to yelling.

  • MT

    Dale asked that question to several friendly, but very Protestant, people at at a cordial get-together. These Protestants, for whatever reason, were all advocating for female priests in the Catholic Church. They admitted to not believing that a Catholic priest has any of the priestly faculties granted by the Church. So Dale’s question (“why do you care that a woman CAN’T do it either?”) really threw them off their game! I’ll bet there are females who both believe in the power of the priesthood and want to become priests. Maybe the question for them is “why do you believe what the Church says about the power of the priesthood, but disbelieve what the Church says about the necessity of the priest to be male?”

  • savvy

    The Question I usually ask , is what is a priest ordained to do? If they respond with comparisons to their pastor. I would tell them that they do not understand the whole concept of the priesthood.

  • Angel

    Sorry, Father. I am too intense!

  • Dianne

    Thank you for your response and I appreciate your patience with what I’m sure is a “Catholicism 101″ question.

  • Jack

    Lol. I can sympathize. What there needs to be, in these com-boxes, is an italicization button.

  • MT

    Something to keep in mind — were it not for Sacred, Apostolic Tradition, the Bible would not exist. What did those “Bible-only” Christians do for four hundred years before the Bible was compiled by the Church? And what did Bible-believing Christians do for 1400 years until the Bible came into print? The answer is that they followed the Sacred Tradition of the Apostles, which commenced at the origin of the Church that Christ Himself founded.

  • Brandy Miller

    The Bible does NOT support polygamy. In fact, if you read it very closely you will notice that all of the examples of polygamous unions in the Bible resulted in nothing but disaster and heartache for all involved. Rachel and Leah were divided by polygamy, each competing with the other for Jacob’s love and attention, and the children were divided by the same jealousy. Sarah instituted polygamy and then immediately became jealous of Hagar and the sons of Abraham were divided by it. Solomon’s polygamy led him eventually to abandon God and worship false idols. David’s polygamy resulted in the eventuality of his sons trying to kill one another out of jealousy.

    Remember that polygamy did not exist for Adam, nor should it have for any of the ancestors, though God permitted such things that does not mean that’s how he intended for it to be – just as He didn’t intend for divorce, but permitted it because of the hardness of men’s hearts.

    Last, but hardly least, we have God’s own example to follow. God is not a polygamist. The Father espoused Himself to one Bride, and remains faithful to Her. Christ espoused Himself to one Bride, and remains faithful to Her. The Holy Spirit espoused Himself to one Bride, and remains faithful to Her. Throughout every generation, throughout every trial, God remains faithful to His Bride no matter how far she may wander or what mistakes she may make along the way.

  • C Brett Bode

    Substitute “force” for “impose” and my post may be clearer.

    Yes, Jesus sent out his disciples on the great commission…….as he continues to do so today. The Gospel is the good news that God loves us, and like a loving father has sacrificed Himself for us, freeing us from sins shackles and enabling us with the aid of the Holy Spirit to reciprocate his love by turning away from sin and back to him.
    It is our job as disciples to spread the good news. It is up to the Holy Spirit and the individual listener to respond. It is not ours to force, coerce, impose, the gospel on any one……….we are to move on, shaking the dust from our sandals if our message is rejected.
    Re: What Church? The Church of Jesus Christ is experiencing disunity as it fractured asunder in the 12th Century when the great schism occurred and the Western (Roman) Church split from the Eastern Church. The Reformation saw further divisions in the Church and the Protestant (protest) Church came into being. The Protestant Church has continued to divide and now has thousands of divisions. Every follower of Christ should pray daily for a return to unity in Christ of all those who belong to Him….as Christ prayed in His high priestly prayer, “That they may all be one….”

    There is a religion which teaches “forced conversion” and execution of infidels who refuse to “convert”. We see it at work in the world today. Our brothers and sisters in Christ our being persecuted daily for the exercise of their conscience in the middle east and other areas of the world controled by Muslim fanatics. Sadly, various members and divisions of Christendom engaged in similar practices from time to time in the history of the Church- including the Roman Catholic Church.

    Yes, we have an obligation to speak the truth as our conscience dictates……..we are also obliged to submit humbly to one another in love, especially to those among us who have proven by their good actions, sacrifices, and knowledge of scripture and tradition; and that is because it is a very great sin to substitute our truth for the Truth that is in Christ Jesus. Beware the seven woes…..

  • Jennifer

    Hi Dianne,

    When Christ instituted the Holy Priesthood at the Last Supper, He chose all and only men as His priests. We have to tread lightly here; do we really want to question God’s own perfection and wisdom with how He designed His own Church?

    In other words, this is how God made His Church, and I trust Him to know exactly what He’s doing. Besides, the priesthood doesn’t exactly play to our strengths, does it?

  • Mick

    In my blissful ignorance, I always thought that what matters is not what people want, but what God wants… as in “Thy will be done on Earth as it is in heaven”. If it is not the will of God that women should be priests, then women should not be priests. If it is the will of God that women should not marry each other, if it is His will that men should not marry each other – let His will be done. How do we know? We ask and we trust, then listen to His Word, Tradition and His Church.

  • C Brett Bode

    Marriage between a man and woman is the Christian norm because the joining together of a man and woman with procreative potential is an icon of the Holy Trinity. It is precisely at this moment when mankind most nearly images God.
    The Trinity is a perfect union of three divine persons. Perfect, or “Divine” love is the glue which binds the Trinity into the Singularity we call God. As humans created in the image of God, we experience a kind of runity with one another, a drawing together into a relationship with another “unique” person when we love another……a child, a parent, a brother, a sister, a friend. We experience the desire to please this other, to protect this other, to give up something of ourselves (sacrifice) for this other. We refer to these relationships as being”bonded”. But, the relationship which most nearly images the Divine Trinity is the relationship of a husband and wife in the creative (conjugal) act. He, because he is male, initiates; she because she is female, recieves him and returns herself; each unselfishly giving and receiving one another as a gift- freely and completely offered and accepted generating between them the creative power which their Creator gifted to them. Homosexual sexual bonding is a form of “self” love which is devoid of “creative” power and along with other forms of human sexuality (other than the marriage of a man and woman) has therefore been generally considered as “unnatural”…….or “abnormal”throughout human history. Human sexuality practiced in any manner other than within a marriage of a man and woman is “abnormal”, “unnatural”, or in Church words, sinful.
    Learning to love as perfectly as possible one who is wholly different from oneself is good practice for human kind created to love One Holy different from ones self. Human life is truely only about love…….learning to love God, and love one another. Before the fall, loving perfectly was the most natural thing in the world, afterward, it became increasingly difficult. Then came Jesus.

  • Jared

    Brandy Miller: VERY well put. I may have to quote you.

  • Bill Sr.

    When those who wish to change our values they first must change our language and the liberal progressive leaders who have been writing our laws and regulations for the past decade are master at it.
    Who would have ever thought that under healthcare we’d come to believe pregnancy was to be considered a “disease” from which women must be protected, or if “contracted” can be viewed as “punishment”. Other tricks in vocabulary are more subtle. When debating an issue if you disagree with their agenda or arguments you are “divisive” or “confrontational” and to them “compromise” is when you are willing to capitulate to their wishes. This is the language the left and our own president are using today.
    The facts are today a new human life in the womb is no longer recognized as a gift from heaven or the procreated fruit of true love. Our president has even described its presence as a “punishment” for making a poor choice. Life in the womb is not treasured by society as its most valuable asset and our hope for the future.
    So if it has become a war of words we need to, as the president has said, “Level the playing field”. This society has decided womb life is no life and deserves “little consideration” and no “protection” under the law. Some, like our president have “personally” voted (three times) and “legislatively” determined that even when taken out of its “home” in the womb and “discarded” on an abortionist operating table having survived an attempt to be “destroyed” it must be “ignored” and left to die since it was “unwanted”. Unlike the unwanted and homeless on our streets these precious little souls currently have no tin cup or “neighborhood shelter” or government “assistance” program to turn to for help. When they “arrive” on the scene or sonogram they aren’t received like illegal aliens and given the “benefits of citizenship” like the thousands crossing our borders daily. In short, the most helpless of all “new life” in our country are not only the “least served” by us they are being deliberately challenged by a totalitarian regime as a “social problem” unless (pray God) they are actually desired by the “patient”…formerly known as mothers.
    We should add, lest you think otherwise, the next “target” for the “tyrants of translation” will be to “convince” us their wonderful healthcare system can no longer carry and somehow needs to eliminate or be “relieved” of the tremendous “burden” of the extremely expensive elderly “beneficiaries” of Obamacare.

  • Bill Sr.

    When you continue this kind of socialistic logic to its conclusions it is not hard to figure what is in store for us just down liberal lane. In fact it is already here.
    Since college girls are assumed to be entitled to have all the sex they can cram into four years of study and the cost of personally choosing to prevent their bodies from functioning normally to this heightened involvement with the sheer pleasure associated with nature it is now considered to be the obligatory responsibility of taxpayers to pay for their choice of personal physical fantasy and casual sexual pleasure one way or another until they are out on their own looking for work in a jobless market, what is next?
    Well then some other liberal government run system of healthcare like Planned Parenthood can take over the job and gladly kill off any inadvertent normal consequences (Obama calls them punishments) that happen in the anti-natural process. Rest assured by the two fisted combination of government run media and liberal theocracy their choices will be protected from any religious or moral theology.
    After that the plan currently on the medical horizon now is that should they decide to attempt to retrain their bodies to function normally and hopefully produce offspring as their bodies were designed to do they will be allowed to review the net results (about to be defined as a Non-person by liberal lingo) and if they are not satisfied with the appearance, sex, or health of the IT they, with rights of ownership, can request that IT be disposed of BEFORE or (the latest argument) AFTER BIRTH should the owner not be satisfied with her product up to a year or so without penalty, would you believe?
    Socialism touts pleasure without pain or penalty, in practice it is convenience without conscience.

  • Ramanie

    Dear Father. Thank you. This is a great article. God bless you