Friday, January 24, 2020

papal sabotage?

Does anyone  remember  the strange things  that  kept happening  to  Benedict  before his  abdication? Early  in  his papacy he enjoyed  putting  on a black  cassock  and  going for a  walk  around the  Vatican  at night. He'd only take his assistant  Ganswein  with him. Somebody leaked it to the press and he stopped. Who leaked it and why with the hint that something  untoward  must be going on?

One year Benedict  decided to wear one John XXIII'ds old red caps.  Well John was a big ole man and the cap did not fit Benedict. It was way too big, he looked foolish and was mocked in both Catholic and secular media. Did Ganswein or anyone else in the papal household not see that the cap was too big and if they did why did they not point it out?

Does anybody  recall his valet who was spying  on Benedict and stealing  from him, Who  hired the  valet? Who interviewed him and who besides the pope did he report to? 

The really embarrassing sight of the homoerotic acrobats performing for Benedict  could have been avoided. The Pellegrini Brothers had just performed at the Barcelona gay circus. Didn't anybody at the Vatican know that? Did nobody check out their act with all the strutting, pouting and stripper moves before booking them? The pope was polite--- too polite for his own good, he smiled and clapped. It looked like the  Holy Father enjoyed  a strip tease show and people all over the world snickered. 

The rainbow flag was displayed right below the Vatican flag when the pope visited a town in Italy back in 2008, and the as the pope processed by he was of course photographed with it. The Congregation for the Propagation of the Faith was in charge of the staging of the visit so somebody official knew about the flag and approved it. Did it not occur to this person that the pope would be seen with a rainbow flag or was that the point of the exercise?


Even security seemed to fail him. A crazy woman tackled him twice in different years and the reaction from the Vatican press office seemed to be nonchalant. 



As Ian Flemming wrote, “Once is happenstance. Twice is coincidence. Three times is enemy action.”  Was everyone around Benedict, including Archbishop Ganswein, truly incompetent or was he sabotaged, in subtle as well as gross ways until he decided to leave the battlefield? 



Sunday, January 19, 2020

On Fr. Z's grouchiness and other random thoughts on a Sunday afternoon

  • Fr. Z. is a bit put out because nobody invited him to the protest in Germany this week. He compared it to a self licking ice cream cone which has a connotation that really surprised me coming from a priest. His criticism was not entirely fair. I believe Father was injured last year  when he was struck by a motorcyclist while crossing a street and he had a a bout with sickness around Christmas so who would expect him to be standing still in the cold for an hour? Besides he's just returned from a European trip that probably was not free. His superiors might not not have allowed him to attend anyway.

    I'm not picking on Father Zuhlsdorf. He's very good at what he does. I rarely go to his blog anymore but the travelogues and food photos are pleasant and cozy reading. If I were organizing a conference I'd call Fr. Z to say Mass and then hopefully cook something Italian afterwards but I wouldn't ask him to come participate in open confrontation that might get him into too much trouble. Every year when the US bishops have their meeting in Baltimore, Catholic laity and clergy show up and protest. I've never seen Fr. Z. among them, nor did I expect it of him. Open resistance has never been his thing. He's frank about using quiet action instead. He's always advising seminarians to shut up, pray and get ordained so they can make changes in their parishes slowly. 
     How many priests were at the event? Except for Archbishop Vigano, I didn't see any. Perhaps the organizers didn't want to get a priest into trouble. Bishops have been known to use extreme retaliation against annoying priests and the German bishop are aggressive in general. Archbishop Vigano's presence may have been a reason why the protest was not pre-announced.  Perhaps the organizers understand that three can keep a secret only if two are dead, as the old saying goes. At any rate, God bless Fr. Z. and keep him healthy and safe. Hopefully he cooked up some squid and garlic, had some good wine and calmed down.

  • Virginia was founded when England was sunk deep in Henry VIII's religion of convenience. The Episcopalians, who were known as Anglicans before the Revolution formed the First Families of Virginia and ran the colony. There are Episcopalian churches all over Virginia and they are the sites of the USA's earliest history. There's Bruton Parish Church, founded in 1674. There's St. Luke's, Virginia's oldest church, which if I were a millionaire I'd build a replica of and donate it to the my diocese and there's St. John's in Richmond where Patrick Henry gave his "Give Me Liberty or Give Me Death," speech. 

    Bishop Barry Knestout of the Diocese of Richmond says the pastor of St. Bede's in Williamsburg, VA offered his parish  to the Episcopalians for the faux consecration of Rev. Susan B. Haynes because neither the Episcopal Diocese of Southern Virginia nor the Episcopal Diocese of Southwestern Virginia have a church  big enough for the event.  He says it was an act of charity. In Virginia's long history there have been many Episcopalian bishops. This is not the first  time they've had their version of a consecration. Surely they have some place in Richmond that is big enough to hold a lot of people. St. Bede's is a very large church and both Rocky and I got the creeps by how blandly Protestant it looks but it is a CATHOLIC church and should not be used for non-Catholic functions. Luckily, there was an outcry from parishioners and Catholics from around the state and the Episcopalians have decided to find another place for their event.  
    St. Bede, pray for us.
    • When the annual collection for Catholic University is announced, Rocky and I pass on it. In fact, I've come the conclusion that most of the Catholic colleges should have been closed years ago. 

    Saturday, January 18, 2020

    Tuesday, January 14, 2020

    Pray for poor old Benedict

    I have a tender heart for the elderly and those who need someone to care for them. You may still be angry at Benedict for cutting and running out on us --- and I respect that but for God's sake, he's 93. He's weak.  Maybe he's always been weak and maybe Randy Engel is absolutely correct in the doubts she had years ago about him and maybe it's true that you can't trust any German bishop about anything ever---but this old man is surrounded by slimy people and I don't know who has his best interests at heart. I don't  trust Ganswein.

    One more thing, when I was my uncle, Sonny Boy's guardian, his clothes always looked presentable. His hair was always neat and his shoes were in good shape. My laundry standards were not and still aren't up to my mother's impeccable standards so she washed and folded all of his  garments herself. I bought him new clothes and hats any time I saw that he needed something.  When we took him out for excursions no-one who saw him would have known that there was anything wrong with him unless they tried to speak to him. There is no reason why Benedict should be looking unkempt in photos.

    Monday, January 13, 2020


    • Every time I see Benedict XVI I wonder who's taking care of him. His hair isn't combed in photos  and Archbishop  Ganswein keeps harping on his impending  death.




    • Theodore McCarrick must have one hell of a strong dead man switch mechanism in place. 






    • My father would be 80 years old at the end of this month if he had lived. My father-in-law would be 83 if he still lived. Both of them probably would sip a beer and chuckle at Prince Harry with a, "Boy you done ---- and stepped in it."
    • I've been watching the Spanish series on Queen Isabella on YouTube and it's fantastic. 




    • I've been seeing a lot of attacks on Exodus 90.  One individual even accused the founders of being Catholic grifters.  I've read the plan for the 90 days of using Exodus 90 and I can't find anything objectionable. If a man really can't afford the ten dollars a month fee he could if really motivated do it on his own. There is a spiritual exercise for college women created by different people called Fiat 90 that begins next month.


    • An actress who looks like she's lived a hard life won an award and stated in her thank-you speech that she never would have had her fabulous career if she hadn't had an abortion. She  seemed to think she'd actually done something brave and unique. Ridiculous. Hollywood glitter is mixed with with an unending river of blood and always has been.

       Read any biography of any of the old time Golden Age stars and you'll see that baby killing was common. Way back in the early 20s Gloria Swanson's husband reacted to her pregnancy by buying her a vitamin tonic that a pharmacist later told her was nothing of the kind. She divorced him but never got pregnant again. Lana Turner did it to save her career. Jeanette McDonald did it. Joan Crawford lied to her husband and told him she'd had a miscarriage.  According to people who knew her, Marilyn Monroe had so many abortions and so damaged her body it probably led to her miscarriage during her relationship with playwright, Arthur Miller. Judy Garland was betrayed by her own husband and mother who talked her into having an abortion because they feared it would affect her budding career as an adult actress. Ava Gardner was also legally married but feared that a pregnancy would get in the way of roles she wanted so she had an abortion.

      Two Catholic actresses were told to have abortions and rebelled in wildly different ways.  Lupe Velez  fell into complete despair and killed herself. Sweet faced but tough as nails, Loretta Young had her child and gave her up for adoption. Shortly after,Young defied the studio again by claiming her daughter and telling everyone that she was adopted. The actress at the Golden Globe awards is just one of many. 

    Sunday, January 12, 2020

    Pray for me oh Mother of God


    The March for Life and it's Catholic critics

    A not insignificant number of Catholics have a problem with the March for Life because they think the marchers are just having fun. Others are displeased because Catholic marchers are mixing with non-Catholics, especially Evangelicals, and Catholics who are pro contraception.  Others are convinced that any good that happens to the souls and intellect of the  marchers is canceled out because the marchers end up going to irreverent Masses at the FedEx Arena.
    Michael Voris just snapped at a young girl named Sophie for being excited about having gone to the march last year.



    It's true that the man who is fasting and praying and doing penance at home because of abortion and the  woman praying in front of an abortion center are greater than the marchers and it's true that the march is not supposed to be a big party but I'm not sure if slapping down this kid is really doing the pro-life cause any good.

    Friday, January 03, 2020

    Christmas Vacation random thoughts


    • I took two weeks of vacation for Christmas and I don't know why I've never done it before. This was truly restorative. Yesterday Rocky and I went to Southern Maryland and looked for birds. We stayed on the easy paths and didn't go on any long trails so we only saw 12 species. We also visited the Port Tobacco Carmelite convent. 

    The historic convent and chapel. The nuns live in the modern cloister. Occasionally we see the extern sister or hear the nuns praying behind the grate in the chapel. 

    Nativity scene at the convent chapel


    • This afternoon to my astonishment my favorite  political and social commentator spoke about the pope. He's not Catholic. In fact, he's a Baptist but he had  a bit of respect for the pope in general and was shocked to see him yell at a woman and slap her hands. Another person who only does political commentary and is at best, a nominal Christian as far as I can tell wrote about how disgusted he was upon seeing the video.
      A non Catholic relative asked me if I saw the video and she was both surprised and disapproving about it.  I've been trying to get this relative to convert for years....... I'm back at square one.
    • I'd heard about the South American seminarian pipeline but it wasn't until this vacation that I had time to spend a few hours reading about it. If the new priest at your parish came from Colombia, is a young man under 50 and went to certain seminaries on the East Coast you might want to find a new parish or keep an eagle eye on your son.
    • Some people are disappointed by Abby Johnson because she came out on the side of a hospital that wants to remove life support from a sick baby. I can only say that it is a bad idea to canonize someone  before they're dead. Abby doesn't make her money from abortions anymore. That's  great but it doesn't  mean she's  now the voice of wisdom on every  subject, nor does it mean she's a saint.

    • 42 million babies died from abortion in 2019. 


    St. Franis de Sales, Benedict, Maryland
    • On Saturday we went to the most beautiful Mass I've been to in a very time at St. Francis de Sales.

    Happy New Year


    Normally I don't really care for Berzosa's work but this is cute.