Tuesday, March 28, 2017

Public Catholics

I've said it before and I'll say it again: public Catholics need to be clean. If you did something that could lead to your being blackmailed you need to come out and admit it in public. Sooner or later somebody is going to find out and when we really need you, you will think about your mortgage and your reputation, and your kid's college fund (if you are a layperson) and let the Faith down.

There is an old Jamaican expression, "The higher the monkey climbs, the more of his backside he exposes." That means that higher you rise the more your private life will be scrutinized. Be honest with yourself before you start earning a living off of the Church or someone else will do it for you.


Friday, March 24, 2017

Benedict Option? Nope

There has been more talk recently about Rod Dreher's Benedict Option book. I remain unimpressed. Quietly stepping out of public life and and peaceably going about our business will not work. The Devil will not leave us alone in our little country enclaves and neither will his servants on earth. Ask the laypeople, nuns, monks and priests who were martyred by the Tudors, the Communists and the Nazis.

Instead of trying to hide out let's look at what St. Benedict actually did. He worked to save souls. He built. He preserved learning. Let's look at the history of Spain. From Pelayo to Isabella is a long time. Nobody who was with Pelayo and saw the first victory against the Moors lived to see Isabella finally drive them out. There will not be instant gratification but Catholics, instead of bleating to the world, "Look, do as you please, just leave us in peace!", how about going on the offensive?   It took the evil people who infested our church and schools, and politics decades to get things to where they are now. Why do you think --without a miracle that a correction would be instant? It takes much longer to build than it does to destroy.

Someone is muttering, "Okay Dymphna, what do we do?" Well for a start, let's stop feeding the beast. Stop following the crowd. Go home after work instead of getting bombed at happy hour. Get married and have children. Reject feminism and any other ism that isn't Catholicism. Refuse to give to any heretical groups or disobedient, modernist orders. Don't give to Catholic Charities. Don't give to anything run by the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops. Refuse to give money to a parish that has a prima dona priest or leave the parish. Read old Catholic books. Do not allow immorality in your house. If that means  telling your elderly mother than no, she can not come to your place with her new "husband" and sleep in the same guest bedroom then so be it. Be polite to your brother and his boyfriend at family events do not have them at your place. Live your life in such a way that your children will not be able to look back and remember that you preached a lot but backed down whenever it was inconvenient or painful.

Don't send your kids to Catholic-in-name-only high schools and colleges. In fact, don't demand that your kid go to college at all if he or she has no interest in the medical, legal, architectural or scientific professions. Community college and trade schools won't leave them in debt until they are 50 and will actually give them skills that will make them employable. None of these things require that you move to a compound in the backwoods and wait for the FBI to show up with a flamethrower.

Sunday, March 19, 2017

St. Joseph, pray for us




This tender painting is one of my favorites. Having found Our Lord in the Temple,the Holy Family is returning home to Nazareth. St. Joseph is so relieved that he's picked up Jesus, who probably wasn't all that light by this time and is carrying Him. 

Sunday, March 12, 2017

St. Peter Damian, pray for us

“Who can expect the flock to prosper when its shepherd has sunk so deep into the bowels of the devil?”  St. Peter Damian



Saturday, March 11, 2017

If you corrupt the people, you can do anything








If you corrupt the people, you can do anything. That idea isn't new of course, but it popped into my head this morning when I looked again at the ugly and according to the artist, deliberately erotic painting in the cathedral of Terni-Narni-Amelia, Italy. Archbishop Vincenzo Paglia, who commissioned this thing  and had himself included, naked and embracing a another naked, pert bottomed man was not  called to the Vatican and asked "Vinny, what the heck is wrong with you?" Instead, he is now the head of the  Pontifical Academy for Life. What does the Academy do?  It reaches out to the scientific world and talks about bioethics from a Catholic perspective.  Way back in 2007, Archbishop Paglia looked at his odds and gambled that he could have this abomination painted in a cathedral and get away with it because both his superiors and his people were too mired in laxity that most wouldn't say a word about it.  He won but what pray tell, does a man who spent his parishioner's money to have himself painting naked and to have Our Lord painted with visible genitalia, really care about fighting abortion, eugenics or euthanasia? To put it bluntly, he knows nobody is going to stop him so what is he up to at the Academy?


Many people looked at the Synod on the Family and the upcoming discussion of the priesthood and saw a sly attack. Now I've started to wonder if the end game all along was just to destroy the morals of the people. If the guy and gal in the pew believes they can leave their spouses, get a cheap, quick annulment and prance up to Communion* and the fornicating couple who didn't even bother to marry in any form can be fawned over at Mass and receive Communion then maybe... maybe most of them will mutter something about mercy and say nothing when they read that  pope has reduced the punishment for some priests who enjoy pedophilia.   

In the Protestant and secular world this has already happened. The divorced and remarried, unrepentant adulterer are welcomed and even lead churches. The unchurched man who is unapologetic about being  "married" again  or a shameless lothario has little serious  to say about other people's sins. He may crack a nasty joke among friends but he's not making any real objections lest he be seen as hypocritical. Hollywood, and all of the mainstream media glamorized sexual sin and the people followed. Now we gasp impotently at where it has all led.



*I suspect that devout divorced Catholics are being used to further an agenda. How many people who ditch a spouse and marry a new lover really care about going to Mass and receiving Communion, without fanfare anyway? 

Thursday, March 09, 2017

Keep calm and skip the trip to the theater

  • I've said it before, I'll say it again. Parents, Disney is not your friend. It and all of Hollywood pumps out social manipulation, which is sometimes gross but usually subtle. The gross manipulation is bad because viewing porn, blasphemy, and certain violent scenes leaves a bruise on the soul but even this is less dangerous than the clever, subtle version that drip,drip, drips slow acting poison into our society day in and day out. Your kids may be embarrassed if they don't have the latest Disney merchandise but they will survive if you don't go to the new Beauty and the Beast movie. The more worrisome problem may be the adults. It's astonishing how many adults obsess over Disney films to the  point of dressing up like the characters, decorating their homes with artwork depicting their film favorites and turning their fandom into a way of life. I've read many essays by Catholic laymen and priests telling young men to give up video games but I've yet to come across anything telling people that dressing up like Cinderella when you are 24 years old, watching the new Star Wars sequels 50 times in a row or carrying on like a banshee if you meet someone who doesn't like your favorite movie, shows subnormal maturity. 




  • Last month it was reported that the SSPX bought property in Rome and a deal with the pope was eminent. Some people lost their minds over this and one even compared Arbishop Fellay with the betrayer of St. Thomas Moore. The SSPX says the story is false.  Somebody is lying but who? 



  • Rocky and I took a few days off to celebrate our wedding anniversary and took a road trip to Pennsylvania. We went to Mass at St. Joseph's Church in Lancaster County. I think it's the most beautiful parish church I've ever seen and outside of my own parish, it was probably the most well done Novus Ordo Mass I have ever attended.