Friday, November 24, 2023


 Michael Voris is gone.  Christine Niles says she submitted her resignation on November 10th.  I'm not dancing a jig but it is for the best that this is so.  Watching the whole Church Militant show play out over the years has been like watching a case of folie a deux syndrome and it became disturbing on primal level. Have you ever seen something so ugly that your skin tingled and your stomach tightened? That's the effect Voris's reportage had on me.

I've seen comments on Twitter condemning  anyone who is gloating that  the board of Church Militant forced him to resign. but while there were a few people who were delighted and expressed themselves in really crass ways, the majority of Catholic media has either been silent or been kind.  

To those who say "Oh, this is a tragedy. Voris  and Church Militant have done such good and been so influential for Catholicism,"I suggest that you read Randy Engel's 2017, article, "All The Men Behind the Opus Dei Curtain," and then go to Mass this Sunday and afterward mention CM and Voris to your friends. Most will tell you they never watched or read his Tweets and the rest will ask, "Who?" The majority of Catholics around the world have no idea who Michael Voris is or who Taylor Marshall, Patrick Coffin, Michael Lofton or Kennedy Hall are.  

 Pray for Voris  that he gets his spiritual life in order but I think we can all do without CM or Voris's type of journalism. Six months or so, if he shows up again on the media stage please don't give him money. Don't look to professional media Catholics to be your spiritual guides. 

Saturday, November 11, 2023

Tertullian, St. Ignatius, a pop song and one lone bishop

St. Ignatius of Antioch always leaves me awestruck.  He was a disciple of St. John, the Evangelist, and was the third bishop of Antioch. In his old age during the reign of Emperor Trajan the holy bishop was taken prisoner in Antioch and carried off to Rome. He was going to be eaten alive by lions for the amusement of the Flavian Amphitheater going public. Most people today facing such an end  would have been reduced to screaming hysteria, but Ignatius managed to write six letters to his fellow Christians encouraging them and letting them know that he was ready to lay down his life for Jesus. Read those letters and you will be amazed and inspired. 

A bishop cannot be a coward. A bishop, if he is worthy of his cassock should be ready to suffer and die for the love of Our Lord and in defense of his flock.  Non Veni Pacem has posted parts of a letter to Bishop Strickland  from an unnamed friend of the bishop's that quotes Tertullian and exhorts Bishop Strickland to remember and behave like St. Ignatius. The bishop  mentions the letter in a speech. Non Veni Pacem links to the whole thing.  It is a beautiful letter and the speech is one that will stick with me. When I read it, I remembered the first time I heard the song, How This Ends. That song is one of my all time favorites and was a calming factor during a very hard time. 

How It Ends Lyrics

Hold your grandmother's Bible to your breast

Gonna put it to the test

You wanted it to be blessed

And in your heart

You know it to be true

You know what you got to do

They all depend on you

And you already know

Yeah, you already know how this will end

There is no escape from the slave catcher's songs

For all of the loved ones gone

Forever's  not so long

And in your soul

They poked a million holes

But you never let them show

Come on, it's time to go

And you already know

Yeah, you already know how this will end

Now you've seen His face

And you know there's a place in the sun

For all that you've done

For you and your children

No longer shall you need

You always wanted to believe

Just ask and you'll receive

Beyond your wildest dreams

And you already know

Yeah, you already know how this will end

I think Bishop Strickland of Tyler, Texas has a pretty good idea  how his current situation ends. No, he will not be fed to lions but the rest of his life is going to be quite different than what he may have expected when he first went to the seminary. St. Ignatius and St. John Fisher, please pray for your brother. 

Sunday, November 05, 2023

Random thoughts on a warm Sunday morning.

  •  A lot of people in DC and London are shocked and frightened by the huge anti-Israel marches. I'm mystified as to why. Did these people think that a Muslim person whether a refugee, naturalized citizen or second or third generation born citizen would go "Yay Israel,"!, on command? Have you read their book? It clearly states what they believe. 

     A lot of middle class people live in an intellectual  and social bubble. They are so happy that a new restaurant from --- country has opened up or they fondly remember going to college with a person from --- country and assume foolishly, that everyone from --- is just like their old college buddy. Worse, they see minorities of all spectrums as mere symbols for them to patronize and virtue signal about.  Northern Virginia and the whole DVM has a huge population of people from countries who don't like Israel. Of course, they are expressing themselves. Those of you who work for Catholic Charities migrant services or other NGOs especially have no excuse for being surprised.

  • I don't like professional Catholics. The man or woman who makes their living from the Faith will do and say whatever is necessary to keep the mortgage paid. Instead of going to the endless conferences these people keep putting on and fattening their wallets; why not read a a book written by a saint? Why not go to Adoration or on personal pilgrimage? 

  • I enjoyed the You Tube videos of a really interesting woman who had similar tastes in clothes, home d├ęcor,  history, and art to mine but out of no where she dropped a bomb. She's a practicing  "good" witch. Nope. I'm out. I blocked her channel and was quite disappointed. The typical occultist is not just  that oddly smelling girl whom nobody liked back in school.  It's gone mainstream and  you'd be shocked to see how many apparently normal people you know are involved. 

  • We're going to South Carolina this month to clean all the family graves and order any necessary repairs. I'll be bringing Klean Logik Headstone Cleaner and D/2 Biological Solution  with me but I'll buy the brushes and water buckets at Walmart when I get there. Mama will supervise while I clean and Rocky and Uncle Junior can be the water brigade.  It's been too long since I was last saw my father's grave and I'm really looking forward to saying a rosary there. 

  • In your charity, could  you say a prayer for a particular priest? When I looked up at him during the processional I was shocked. He looked terribly sick and unsteady all through Mass and I wanted to grab him and check his pulse. 

Tuesday, October 31, 2023

A Ghostly Tale for All Hallows Eve

Years ago when I was still in high school I read a collection of ghost stories called "Haunted Heartland." Most of them weren't a bit scary and were presented in  the dry  businesslike fashion of a folklorist who is merely collecting materials for a dissertation, but one tale stuck with me. It was the story of Fr. Louis Lesches, a priest assigned to St. Mary's College in Minnesota, who tried to kill his superior, Bishop Patrick Hefron. The bishop was saying Mass in the seminary chapel one morning when he turned around and saw Fr. Lesches standing behind him. To the bishop's surprise, the priest was wearing a Prince Albert suit instead of his cassock or clericals. To add to this surprise the bishop quickly realized that  the priest was packing heat. Fr. Lesches fired a gun three times, hitting the bishop twice.

At that time Fr. Lesches was already the number one problem child of the diocese. Although he was said to be brilliant and had done well in the academic part of his seminary studies, he was also overly emotional, insubordinate, and felt that the bishop was persecuting him. He'd failed at all of his parish assignments and now Bishop 
Hefron had recalled him to St. Mary's to keep a close eye on him. 

 Bishop Heffron's vestments, orneriness, and his great physical shape probably saved his life.  Instead of dropping dead or swooning he yelled at his now panicked attacker and chased him out of the chapel. Fr. Lesches was captured and spent the rest of his life in a mental hospital.

 Students have been claiming to see the ghost of Fr. Lesches on campus for decades. It's a spooky tale but I hope everyone who hears or reads it will stop and say a prayer for this poor, strange, unstable man who never should've been ordained but is a priest forever and one who probably really needs our help now. 

Sunday, October 01, 2023

What the heck is WRONG with people?

 When 26 year old Baltimore CEO Pava LePere was found  partially clad, strangled and bludgeoned to death in her own apartment building I noticed that MOST of the comments in both secular news and among men on Catholic Twitter mocked the victim and expressed satisfaction that she was dead.

 Pava supported Black Lives Matter. The irony of her murder by a man whom she would have presumably championed and whom she naively let into her controlled access building  was enough for an explosion of schadenfreude. 
One Catholic man in particular seemed triumphant and  kept posting on Twitter, "She let him in." The last time I checked, he'd made his statement several times.

Look, I get that men are frustrated. There are many silly young women who flit from one fad to another with no deep thought about their own safety or much of anything else but Pava was murdered. How can you call yourself a Catholic man and revel in her death?  She obviously didn't grow up in a neighborhood like the one I did and unlike mine,  her parents may have never taught her you don't open to the door to anyone you don't know because it's better to be seen as rude than dead. At 26, she was old enough to be my daughter and I look at her photo with sadness. Thank God, the killer, who so far, has attacked three women has been caught. 


Sunday, September 10, 2023

Pray for Frank Walker!

 Please pray for Frank Walker, of Canon 212 and The Stumbling Block.  He has had a stroke.   He's a fine man and has always been very gracious to me. 

Sunday, September 03, 2023

and the hits just keep on coming -- random thoughts for a chilly Sunday morning

  •  I went for my annual physical and the results weren't all sunshine and giggles. I've been anemic all my life but apparently this time the doctor was concerned that my hemoglobin is too low even for me so I'm off for more tests. I was advised to do this as soon as possible.  I became weirdly angry and answered the doctor with one one word sentences and was pretty curt when I couldn't do that. Sorry about that. I stayed angry for two days and kept Ennio Morricone's music on repeat and now I'm so tired I'm just flat.

  • Francis may be a legitimate pope or not but for practical purposes his bottom is firmly planted on Peter's throne and he is wielding power with glee.  Just as Our Lady said repeatedly in different apparitions good priests, monks, whole convents, the occasional bishop and cardinal are being persecuted. We hear shocking heresy coming out of Rome daily.  Men who pledged allegiance to Sodom  are riding high. People who worship  at a Latin Mass  are  being pushed out of their parishes.  Even people who go to a reverent as possible Novus Ordo where the priest does not face the people while serving Mass are under attack. We have a pope who is mean.  We've had bad popes in the past 2000, years but when was the last time in living memory did we have a pope who was so stunningly nasty and who spewed insults on a daily basis?  Yet and still, we have to cling to the Bark of Peter. If the changes coming out the Synod are as bad as people are saying they will be many of us are going to have to make decisions. Find a decent priest. Go to a true Mass. Go in a basement, a field,  a hotel room or cemetery chapel if you have to.  Our grandparents did this and more when Vatican II landed on them and that is why you and I had the chance to go to a TLM. 

  • 3 Reasons to Not Believe in Aliens....

  • This is truly weird. Colm Flynn of EWTN shows Chinese Catholics who traveled to visit Francis in Mongolia. Since the Chinese government forbade this, Flynn is exposing these people to danger for what? A few clicks? A pat on the back in the comments?  It reminds me of the Night Stalker case where then San Francisco mayor, Diane Feinstein blabbed details not known the public which led to the serial killer disposing of his shoes and continuing his reign of terror. Flynn should not have shown these people on camera. 

  • Theodore McCarrick successfully ran down the clock. He's either faking dementia, or he and his protectors kept him going until he genuinely slid into the terrible mental fog of senility.  We do not put people on trial who are too feeble minded to understand what is going on and speak for themselves so the charge of molesting a 16 year old at a wedding reception in 1974 ,was dismissed. This may make some readers angry but I don't think that if the case was tried fairly, there was much chance of conviction. Was there any forensic evidence? Were there any living witnesses to back up the victim's story? But this is besides the point. McCarrick should have been laicized, excommunicated, and tried in civil court DECADES ago. The festering sore of a scandal remains. Bishops and Cardinals knew what Uncle Ted was doing. Seminarians knew what he was doing and whispered about  the New Jersey beach house.

    Father Issac Relyea is, to my knowledge the only person who has said with his characteristic bluntness what he thinks about the seminarians who complied with McCarrick's  sexual demands. McCarrick's "nephews" are in high places today. For a long time nobody was appointed to a bishopric  in the United States unless McCarrick vouched for them. Watching Cardinal Kevin Farrell telling an interviewer that he had no idea-- never saw or heard anything that made him raise an eyebrow about what McCarrick was doing in the whole five years he was a  DC diocese bishop and living in the same four bedroom apartment as the cardinal was the icing on a stomach twisting cake for many people.  St. Peter Damian, pray for us!


Monday, August 07, 2023

Random thoughts on a gut punch of a Monday morning.

  •  In your charity could you please pray for my oldest male cousin? He had an aneurysm yesterday and was taken off the ventilator today. He was only 57.

  • I was reading a rant about Parental Alienation a few days ago and sighed.  It reminded me of another man who was a talented writer and who was quite frank and unapologetic about his wild days back in the 70s and early 80s. He changed his life and overcame his addictions but did so too late. He blamed his divorced wife for turning their daughter against him to point where she refused any contact with him. What many Boomers forget is that bad episode in their lives --that hiccup in an otherwise okay life happened during their child's formative years. Your episode was their life. You being the bad guy or gal is the shadow over their childhood and no, despite what you were told by the experts, childhood resilience doesn't mean forgetting.  Your ex may have manipulated the situation and caused every fight but your adult child remembers standing in the door way while you screamed and cursed and perhaps even got physical in your anger.

    There are wicked parents who use their children as weapons against their ex but if you gave your child a river of sad memories when they were young then you can't expect them to want your company now that you are old.

  • World Youth Day has been a cringe worthy occasion probably going back to 1986. These mega Masses and goofy 1970s antics that are supposed to appeal to the young  have to stop. Sacrilege at WYD is so common that people now accuse the pious who are shocked of "pearl clutching," and the sophisticated folks claim it's no big deal. Bishop Strickland pointed something out that actually gave me a  little hope.  If the bishop is correct and this was the lowest attended WYD since 1986, then perhaps parents are wising up.


Wednesday, July 12, 2023

Random thoughts on a Wednesday night

  •  I've never heard Dr. Smith speak before. She's sharp as a tack. I think she's a bit too soft of JPII but for anyone who still is walking around with rose colored glasses about our bishops she's an excellent dose of reality. 

  • Taylor Marshall has dropped out of the presidential race...of course. 

  • I dislike the phrase human trafficking because it's a polite euphemism for pimping and sex slavery; things that should be should not be sugar coated.  Some people comfort themselves with the idea that this only happens in the big city or in poor areas. These snobs are deluding themselves.  A few years ago I read about a young man in his 20s  who took his teen aged girlfriend  to a motel room and would not let her leave. He and his friend placed an online ad and sold her to the degenerates who answered the ad and met them at the motel. This atrocity went on  for weeks. Eventually, the police were notified by someone and she was rescued. Her family thought she was a runaway.  This happened in a cute, historic tiny Virginia town that tourists visit.

  • Covid sent a lot of people over the edge. Rocky and I went to Chesapeake Beach last week and I was fascinated by how many people were dressed like they were in their bedrooms. It was a whole lot of pajamas and lounge wear. I'm not talking about young people either. The worst dressed people with unkempt hair who looked like they had just come out of their dens were in their 40s and 50s. It's like a lot of people just don't have the will or energy to even groom themselves.

    In my area violent crime has exploded. People seem to have shorter fuses in general and something odd is happening with the homeless population. Psychotic episodes are becoming more frequent and going to the gas stations has become unnerving. There are so many wild eyed men standing in the parking lots glaring at people or demanding money. Rocky used to get gas before he went to work in the mornings. Now he goes in the afternoon when there are more customers at the station. 


Saturday, June 24, 2023

When the poisons hatch out

 When Fr. James Jackson was arrested for viewing gigantic amounts of child and infant pornography it set off a bizarre chain reaction throughout certain corners of Catholic social media. For going on three years now I've watched a saga that has no heroes and a lot of people who have been taken for fools, driven mad  or had their private lives exposed. 

I suppose the second step after the arrest was the fundraiser Restoring the Faith Media podcaster, Mike Parrot set up to hire a private investigator to look into the accusations against Fr. Jackson. At the time I thought the effort was a well-meant act of folly, like Don Quixote tilting at windmills. Fr. Jackson did not have one or two nasty photos saved on a shared computer in the rectory living room. Albino character assassins from the Vatican didn't sneak into his rooms and plant smut on his computer. No lay person with a grudge just waltzed into the rectory, hit the Dark web for what must have been many hours and high stepped out like cartoon villain without a priest, a secretary, the sacristan or a housekeeper noticing and questioning. Maybe things are really loose in Rhode Island but from my childhood to today I've never been to the rectory without having a good reason and my presence was known and expected. Getting into a rectory or a separate parish office without an appointment is close to impossible. 

Enter Church Militant. That crew seem to take great personal glee whenever they can report on a juicy nasty story especially if it involves sex or anyone who's considered to be in Traditional Catholic circles. For reasons that have never been clear, CM's leadership seemed to take a personal offense toward the fundraiser. A phone call was made to the RTF guy and he was told that he ought to stop the fundraiser and return the donor money. Both CM and RTF agree on this point but after that the story turns into a wildfire.  RTF says that CM threatened and attempted to blackmail him. CM says that RTF was told that if the fundraiser was not stopped the public would be informed  that the whole thing was unsound. RTF released a video declaring that he was being attacked and then the armies of supporters for CM and RTF formed. 

 On RTF's side were old friends who had blogs or Twitter accounts of their own, and many new people who were disgusted by CM in general and were naturally sympathetic to anyone who spoke back to them. On CMs side were their fans, Catholic media owners who had positive relations with CM and enemies of RTF.

CM advised a person who is described as a long-time friend to the organization that a story was going to be run on the RTF guy and hoped it wouldn't cause any trouble for the friend. The long-term friend ended his business relationship with RTF, who was naturally furious. RTF cried out that CM had gotten him fired from his job. Many people, myself included were appalled.  CM fired back with grass burning fury. Rather than a naive young man whose family was in danger of going without due to his job loss, CM portrayed him in a much different light. A statement of a former business partner was published and a number of things were posted about his property and his relationship with the Oblates of St Augustine. 

At some point a lawsuit for defamation was filed and the whole saga moved to the sewer. Sordid things were posted daily. Accusations of grave sins by the leading parties  were exposed to the public. In addition, there were accusations of hacking, invasion of privacy in regards to people's addresses and photos of homes, harassment and tale telling about people who weren't even part of the story but happened to be friendly with either side. 

Finally the legal proceedings concerning the defamation claim  concluded and the drama shifted to an administrative proceeding of the Marines. 

Fr. Jackson plead guilty.  The formal part of the saga is at an end.  Neither side can let the revolting matter drop and neither side can resist in schadenfreude. Everyone involved with this thing looks horrible and it's one more example of what bad, really bad things can occur when lay people make their money and fame off the Faith. Please, instead look to the saints and pre-Vatican II catechisms for clarity, instruction and advice. 

Sunday, June 11, 2023

Fr. Jackson gives his plea

  •  Father James Jackson plead guilty, The reaction has been quite muted in Catholic circles. I think everyone with any shred of sense knew after the Kansas arrest that he must be guilty. By this point even the people who donated to both his legal defense fund and the Mike Parrott private investigation now realize  this. Of course there is sorrow but the idea that he was set up by someone who had access to both the rectory computer in Rhode Island and was able to follow him to Kansas is dead. The man who claimed repeatedly in public that he could  barely check his e-mail was deep into one the most nasty and demonic corridors of the Dark Web. Are there innocent priests who have been falsely accused? Yes and St. Gerard could tell you all about it  but the technological nature and precise  locations of  what  Fr. Jackson was accused of made it almost impossible to be anything but guilty.

    My father-in-law refused for many years to have Internet access because he was afraid of seeing random  sinful content. Attempts to  tell him that the Internet isn't like a Monty Python sketch and he wasn't going to see a disembodied nude bosom float by while he was browsing on AOL were ignored and the family either sighed or chuckled.  I think everyone knows by now that you have to go search for hardcore pornography. Sometimes you can see immodesty by accident, for example a lewd woman is photographed almost naked as she goes to an awards show and you see the photo on your news site, but to see carnal acts with underage  probably kidnapped and enslaved victims you have to go on an deliberate hunt. You and I usually do our  browsing on the surface Web and  frequently do business and serious research on the Deep Web; sites that require registration, IDs and passwords and sometimes payment  to obtain the information therein. Then there's the Dark Web where you can engage in criminal activity. I've met or read about people who have to go to the Dark Web to test their company's security or as part of criminal investigations and they all say that you can't just accidentally find it like Alice falling down the rabbit's hole. 

    When the authorities allowed Fr. Jackson to go to his sister's house while waiting for trial they did so on several conditions. He was told to stay away from computers but they found one with internet access hidden on the premises. That's why he was removed from Kansas and taken into custody. Clearly this is a man who lied about being an Internet Luddite. 

    What can we learn about this tragedy?  Kipling would be shaking his head and adding a stanza to "The Gods of the Copybook Headings", if he were alive. It's the same old lesson: Perverts go where the object of their perversion is. 

    As many Mormons, Boy Scout parents, public school parents, and Protestants can tell you, a pervert will go to school and get credentialed and even marry some poor woman as part of his cover in order to be around his chosen victims. The ones who aren't as smart as they thought they were, get caught after a few years but the really clever ones, especially the ones who join rings of like-minded monsters get away with it until they die and face the awesome and inescapable justice of  God. Fr. James Jackson was not the man, many people thought he was but remember that Judas was not the man the Apostles thought he was either. 

    Our Lady of La Salette, who said there would be priests like Fr. Jackson, pray for us. 

Thursday, May 18, 2023

The Taylor Marshall Presidential Bid Is Ridiculous

I like Fr. Nix. He's a loyal friend to Taylor Marshall so although I think he's making a mistake, I get why he's defending Marshall's ridiculous bid to run for president.  Dr. Marshall is in for a nasty surprise. He's a big fish in a small pond but he's going to get chewed up and spat out in the secular political media milieu.  Marshall is used to either fawning attention or hysterical attacks from people who can't articulate why they don't like him. He's never been patted on the head and gotten the patronizing treatment some give to their eccentric but harmless relatives.  He's also never faced an absolutely vicious attack by political operatives who have the ability to dig into his distant past, his finances, harass his family or search for bitter ex-girlfriends. 

Anne Barnhardt had several things to say about his decision and I have to agree. This is a publicity stunt. He will get a book out of it but I think he's also going to lose fans. Have you noticed that other than The Pillar most of Catholic media land has been silent about Marshall's announcement?  They aren't mocking him but they aren't cheering him on either. That silence means that even his buddies know that this is not a serious campaign. 

Tuesday, May 02, 2023

Random thoughts on a Tuesday morning.

  •  I don't care for Taylor Marshall but I have to give him and Jesse Romero their due. They are, to my knowledge the only people who addressed the Satanic convention that happened last week-end  in Boston. Everyone else maintained silence on the affair. I feel sorry for the poor housekeeping staff at the Marriot (I don't want to hear anymore nonsense about the owners being  devout Christians),  who had to clean up afterwards because you know darn well, that grotesqueries beyond what decent people should ever have to see took place in those hotel rooms. 

  • Last week Rocky and I visited the Canons of New Jerusalem in West Virginia for Mass. As soon as Father began praying I was deeply moved and felt at home. This was the first traditional Mass that my husband and I have been able to attend since Cardinal Gregory and Bishop Burbidge reduced  the TLM parishes. 

  • My allergies have been brutal this year. Yesterday I woke up with a headache, a scratchy throat and a stomach ache from my sinuses draining. I think I woke up two or three times from nausea and pain alone. Extra strength Tylenol and Spam fried rice made me feel better. Boy, I wish it would rain and clear out this pollen for a few days. 

  • Okay, this scared me. 

  • Ireland is going to get it good and hard and will fully deserve it. 


Friday, April 07, 2023

Holy Week up to Easter Vigil

  •  Something was off about Palm Sunday Mass this year. There was no procession and  Father must blessed the palms  without his mic on or before Mass. The palms were brought out late and if you didn't grab a one right before Mass you didn't get one unless you were obviously disabled  and the ushers brought it to you. The palms were also taken away after Mass and Rocky had to go to the usher's sacristy to get ours. Father's homily, and the music were excellent. A lot of the regulars were not there and Rocky estimated it was about 100 less people than normal.  

  • We went to the Spy Wednesday Mass and Tenabrae service at our old parish
    And whilst they were eating, he said: Amen I say to you, that one of you is about to betray me. 
     22 And they being very much troubled, began every one to say: Is it I, Lord?  23 But he answering, said: He that dippeth his hand with me in the dish, he shall betray me.  24 The Son of man indeed goeth, as it is written of him: but woe to that man by whom the Son of man shall be betrayed: it were better for him, if that man had not been born.  25 And Judas that betrayed him, answering, said: Is it I, Rabbi? He saith to him: Thou hast said it.   

    In this illustration of the Last Supper by Brother Max Schmalzl we see Judas clutching his bag of silver. I wonder if Brother Max was thinking of this passage from Matthew when he created this artwork.  Notice the arrogance and disrespect of  Judas's posture. Everyone else is in an attitude of worship, kneeling or standing  but Judas looks like a bored guest. He  called the Lord "Rabbi," something the Apostles hadn't done for nearly three years. Peter and the others said "Lord," "Master" and referred to Him as the Christ. Judas, says Rabbi, as if Our Lord were just any rabbi in any synagogue. 

  • Mass of the Lord's Supper was wonderful. Fr. said the Novus Ordo as well as it can be done. I was impressed by the parishioners. Everyone was decently dressed. The parents paid attention to their children and the large church was so packed late comers had to stand. Father's homily was excellent. Rocky said he learned some things he hadn't thought of before. We wanted to do the seven church pilgrimage but Rocky was very tired and we needed to go home. 

  • Easter Vigil was okay...mostly.  Bishop Burbidge preached a nice, inoffensive  homily. The music was fine. The decorations were not as nice as in previous years and the crowd was again, noticeably smaller than last year. 

Saturday, April 01, 2023

Rules for Catholic Twitter (Works for other sites too)

 Rules for Catholic Twitter

  1. Do not go on any form of social media if you are easily hurt by other people's opinions. 

  2. Do not ask for advice and become offended when people give it.

  3. Don't offer marital or child rearing advice unless you are committed to calling the shot as you see it and don't really care what people think. 

  4. Do not show your children's photos.  

  5. Do not show photos of the outside of your home or the road near your home.  It's really easy to find you that way. Practice OPSEC and use your common sense. 

  6. Do not use your real name unless you are a public figure. Normal people with jobs could end up fired or with an unhinged madman at the doorstep at 3 in the morning. See Rules 4 and 5 again. 

  7. If you use your real name or have made it easy to for complete strangers to figure out who you are don't shame your children and adult relatives by sharing their personal business. 

  8. Do not strip your loved ones of their dignity by showing the world  photos of them in a helpless, sick and dying state then ask for privacy or be offended by the nasty and crazy comments you get. 

  9. Do not talk about how simple, poor and humble your life is while showing photos of your trip to Europe on "pilgrimage," and be shocked if you get blowback. Look, we all know you didn't bilocate to Europe. The passport, tickets, food and lodgings and in country transport cost big  money. Some people will attack you because they are jealous, and shame on them but others will see you as a hypocrite and might call you out.  

  10. Do not keep posting about how much you hate whatever site you are on and how evil everyone is. Just leave. 

  11. Don't say shocking things just for views and then get all righteous when someone becomes alarmed and calls either the cops or CPS. 

  12. Do remember that everybody has an opinion and while a lot of them are better left unsaid, except for blasphemy and unrepentant admission or approval of certain sins, they have a right to them just as you have a right to yours.

  13. Don't let what's happening on Twitter or any site turn you into a nut---please!  If you feel yourself becoming obsessed turn the computer off. Go be with your family. Attend to the  duties  of your state in life and consider leaving the site for good. 

  14. Don't get mad if someone comments negatively about your immodest photos.  You needed attention. You got it.    

  15. Pray more. 

Sunday, March 12, 2023

75 days

In his homily our parochial vicar criticized the people who haven't come back to Mass after the shut downs.  He implied that they were lazy sinners. He was right to an extent  but didn't our bishops go right along with the shutdowns? With a few exceptions the only priests I saw doing outside Masses were SSPX. Most of the Faithful  including the weak,  the foolish,  and the isolated were set adrift. For 75 days we couldn't even go unmasked into an empty church for private prayer without being threatened with arrest by the parish priest or a parish staffer.  I've read many heartbreaking stories of people who wrote about how they begged their parish priest to come give a loved one Last Rites during the shutdown and were rejected. We were all told that watching Mass on TV, Facebook or You Tube was good enough and those who mourned the loss of the Mass were called neurotic and selfish.

Even when the civil authorities allowed us to return to Mass, depending on where you lived, the restrooms were closed. Think of all the adults who need to visit the restroom before or after Mass because of age-related or some chronic physical  condition. All these people had to choose between staying away from their parish or risk soiling themselves in public. Even porta-pottys were locked.  How about an apology for abandoning the flock? That YouTube Mass didn't cut it. Frankly, as I sat in the pew and heard Father, I was pissed. 

Wednesday, February 15, 2023

You aren't going to lose your TLM because somebody is grieving about losing theirs

 This week I read a Tweet by a nice woman saying that the TLM will be cancelled in her parish. People rushed to accuse her of lying. People outside the diocese actually had the nerve to write that she apparently didn't hear what she heard her priest announce. Others rushed in to say that no, Bishop Barron, of World on Fire fame had actually given her an upgrade by inviting the SSPX to take over a church/chapel in another part of the diocese roughly two hours away. "See," they cackled. "Bishop Barron isn't cancelling anything!" How is losing the TLM in your parish that you've been attending and having to go elsewhere not cancellation? 

The most disgusting part of this pitiful episode has got to be the self righteous Pharisees braying, "You bad Trads complain and will make the saintly bishop so mad he'll take the TLM away from all us! Thank God we're glad Trads and not stupid and ugly sinners like you!"

That's like saying to an abuse victim to hush and not cry so much or they'll  provoke the abuser to beat them some  more.  If your bishop is so thin-skinned, petty and evil that he crushes people because a handful irritate him  then I hate to break it to you but you don't have a good and holy bishop. You don't even have a bread and butter bishop who's mostly decent even if he is a company man. You have a martinet, a cruel step-father and someone who ought not be a bishop. 

I've always believed that the diocesan TLM was doomed and would not last much longer than Pope Benedict XVI's life. That doom has nothing to do with a grouchy Trad in Dubuque  talking on Twitter, Facebook or Blogger. You aren't going to lose your TLM because somebody openly grieved about losing theirs. You are going to lose it because Pope Francis and all his boys hate Tradition. If you can't offer sympathy to a person who is sad because they can't go to  Mass anymore then for the love of God, at least don't pile on with the abuse. 

Saturday, February 11, 2023

Random thoughts on a Saturday Afternoon.

  • St. Peter, pray for us 

  • Shortsighted people dismiss the importance of the Chinese balloon because China and most of our "allies" already spies on us everyday but spying wasn't the point. By sending a balloon to violate the US airspace the Chinese conducted a humifaction ritual and they got away with it. 

  • The bishop's Lenten Appeal starts next week. Rocky and I may find another parish to go to so we don't have to sit through the always uncomfortable speech that will take the place of the homily. 

  • I don't excuse Kari Lake for losing her Faith but not being able to even go into a church during Covid didn't help. 

  • Pope Benedict XVI's posthumous book was such a disappointment that nobody is talking about it. If the Italian nick-name for Pope Paul VI was "The Sad One," then surely poor Benedict's should be something like, "The Pitiful". 

  • Have you ever noticed how many NBA or NFL players went to Catholic high schools? Most don't seem to have taken the Faith from their school years  but their athletic skills were what the school wanted them for and they made money for the school. If your kid's school is financially sound because it's an athletic powerhouse but the kids don't go to Mass regularly and they don't even have a school chapel then what are you paying for?

  • Did you see that hideous , blasphemous jacket Damar Hamlin had on at the Super Bowl? He's not a nice guy.

Mother Mary Lange, pray for us

Sunday, February 05, 2023

No quick answers in the Neumayr tragedy

 When I first read that George Neumayr was dead I thought it was a stupid joke but then messages from various sources confirmed the news. It is said that he died of malaria, which seems odd to many people. In every photo he Tweeted from Cote d'Ivoire  he was either chomping a cigar or looking like a happy tourist posing with the locals. He didn't appear feverish or in pain at all. On the other hand, he did complain of an episode of food poisoning. It is possible that the nausea, vomiting, and diarrhea that can come with malaria or Yellow Fever  was mistaken for sickness from eating food that had been poorly cooked or kept in unsanitary conditions. Tap water is potable in Cote d'Ivoire but the State Department advises that you stick to bottled water and realize that the ice cubes in your drink at the restaurant or bar probably came from the tap. 

Nobody has commented on what  George Neumayr's general health was like but  some men, even ones who don't look robust,  have the mental and physical  constitution  of bulls. It takes something  catastrophic to make them drop or even admit to being sick. 

Years ago, my Uncle Junior got  walking pneumonia and would have died if other relatives hadn't nagged him into seeing his doctor, who after seeing him, called an ambulance. Until he was unconscious my uncle was insisting that he just had a cold and was not really sick. I can see Neumayr refusing to accept being sick, especially while on a business and pleasure trip until it overwhelmed him. 

Multiple people have written eloquently about the tragic loss of this much loved and admired Catholic author and reporter. There is  passionate speculation about his enemies in various chanceries and the circumstances surrounding his death and there may never be a satisfactory answer. 

I am about to write something indelicate and if you are someone who loved the late George Neumayr you may want to stop reading now. It's been about three weeks since the death and there have been no indications that  George was able to marry his fiancee and the body was buried in country. Presumably the remains are  in a morgue until Neumayr's next-of-kin can fulfill all the local government requirements for release. There  have been no reports about the conditions of morgues in Cote d'Ivoire. Has the body been embalmed?  Does Cote d'Ivoire require that? Have tissue samples been preserved? The mortal remains may have deteriorated beyond the point where a proper autopsy is even possible. 

Contrary to what you've seen in the movies our government doesn't automatically ship deceased civilians home nor does the government pay any medical facility bills. The US consulate takes charge of personal effects and assists next-of-kin to navigate the laws of the land when a citizen dies overseas. 

If a US citizen dies in a first world country getting the body home in a timely fashion can be done. A friend of my mother and of mine  died in London*, while studying there. The embassy did a fine job helping his elderly parents make it to the hospital in time before he was removed from life support and then with paperwork and accommodations until the poor parents could return home. Everything was done with speed and efficiency and kindness. The time from my friend's death to his funeral was not too much more than if he'd died in the US. George Neumayr was visiting a third world country. Nothing about this process is going to be quick. 

Out of all the countries to visit in Africa, Cote d'Ivoire is one that shouldn't be on your list unless you are an experienced third world traveler or have family there. The State Department has four levels of travel advisories from "exercise normal precautions," down to the last one which is "do not travel".  Cote d'Ivoire is rated at level three, that is  "reconsider travel." 

The country has high violent crime. Home invasion, robbery and carjacking are common. Local police, government officials and soldiers have been known to demand bribes. Embassy personnel are not allowed to travel at night.  Visitors are strongly urged to make "evacuation plans that do not rely on U.S. government assistance," avoid crowds and "obtain comprehensive medical insurance that includes medical evacuation." In the State Department's Traveler's Checklist it states that medical evacuation for treatment could cost up to  $100,0,,,, x n00.

  Lepanto Institute said that George Neumayr refused to go to the hospital-- probably until he couldn't object anymore-- and if you read the State Department description of medical facilities in Cote d'Ivoire I see why: 

  • Adequate health facilities are available in Abidjan and other major cities, but health care in rural areas is below U.S. standards.
  • Public medical clinics lack basic resources and supplies.
  • Hospitals and doctors often require payment “up front” prior to service or admission.
  • Credit card payment is not always available, and most hospitals and medical professionals require cash payment.
  • Medical staff may speak little or no English.
  • Generally, in hospitals only minimal staff is available overnight. Consider hiring a private nurse or having family spend the night with the patient, especially a minor child.
  • Patients bear all costs for transfer to or between hospitals. 
Ambulance services in the public system are:

  • not widely available, and training and availability of emergency responders may be below U.S. standards.
  • not equipped with state-of-the-art medical equipment.
  • Injured or seriously ill travelers may prefer to hire a private ambulance or take a taxi or private vehicle to the nearest major hospital rather than wait for a public ambulance.

In short, Cote d' Ivorie can be a dangerous place and whatever bad happens there could end up staying there. This is a tragedy that probably won't end with a neat explanation. May George Neumayr rest in peace.

*  British medicine may be free but I'd rather cut my trip short than trust NHS doctors especially as a foreigner. To this day I still think my friend would be alive if he'd gone to see a doctor at home. 

Thursday, February 02, 2023


 A Medieval  hymn for Candlemass

The queen of bliss and of beauty.

Behold what life that we run in,

Frail to fall and ever like to sin

Through our enemy's enticing;

Therefore we sing and cry to thee:

Revertere, revertere,

The queen of bliss and of beauty.

Come hither, Lady, fairest flower,

And keep us, Lady, from dolour;

Defend us, Lady, and be our succour,

For we cease not to call to thee:

Revertere, revertere,

The queen of bliss and of beauty.

Turn our life, Lady, to God's lust, [pleasure]

Sin to flee and fleshly lust,

For, after him, in thee we trust

To keep us from adversity.

Revertere, revertere,

The queen of bliss and of beauty.

This holy day of Purification

To the temple thou bare our salvation,

Jesu Christ, thine own sweet Son,

To whom therefore now sing we:

Revertere, revertere,

The queen of bliss and of beauty.

Farewell, Christmas fair and free!

Farewell, New Year's Day with thee!

Farewell, the holy Epiphany!

And to Mary now sing we:

Revertere, revertere,

The queen of bliss and of beauty.

Sunday, January 29, 2023

Rest in peace, Sonny Boy

 My Uncle Sonny Boy, died in 2015. Today would have been his birthday.   I loved him very much. 

Tuesday, January 10, 2023

These People Just Can't Be Anything But Nasty

Petulant, nasty, vicious beyond the pale and just plain tacky.  Cardinal Gambetti may have pleased his master on earth but he'll  have to explain his behavior to the One who wept over Lazarus one day. 

Who made the decision that Benedict's body should be stuffed into a van without a coffin or even a shroud to cover the body? We package our groceries with more care.  Have you ever seen a dead body transported like that for a funeral? 

Saturday, January 07, 2023

Random thoughts on a Saturday morning

  • Rocky and I made a short visit on Epiphany Eve to a local parish on Epiphany Eve. I was startled to see Fr. Rupnik's art on the catechetical material in the vestibule. This is nothing against the parish or the pastor who are both known to be fine but shows how ubiquitous Rupnik's work is. Those hideous, dead goggle eyed mosaics are everywhere. Just trashing any images of his work or painting over originals is going to cost a fortune.  

  • Pope Benedict's funeral was enlightening in many ways but I'll mention one very small thing I noticed. I signed onto Twitter and looked at the various professional Catholic accounts. One guy was raging at his enemies and making homosexual jokes. One woman who considers herself to be superior to most Catholics and Americans in particular but constantly seems to be flirting with Eastern Orthodoxy spent the day being bitter and miserable. Days before the funeral  she  stated that she "DGAF" about Benedict. Both these people have asked for donations from Catholics in the past and presume to tell us how we're wrong or ignorant about the Faith. The uglier they got, the uglier they looked themselves. They reminded me of the old Ronald Dahl quote.

  •  If you have a good parish with a holy priest please don't post photos of him or the interior online unless he agrees.  Do not video his homilies without his permission. We have come to the point where even celebrating the Novus Ordo as reverently as it can be done and sticking to the rubrics is going to cause good priests to be attacked by their bishops.