Monday, May 16, 2011

Benedict XVI: laity key to formulating, implementing social doctrine
“Christ’s lay faithful cannot be just passive users and executors, for they are key players in the actuation of the Church’s social doctrine, and valuable partners of the Church’s pastors in its formulation,” Pope Benedict XVI said on Monday at a conference organized by the Pontifical Council for Justice and Peace to mark the 50th anniversary of Blessed John XXIII’s seminal social encyclical, Mater et magistra.

The Holy Father also stressed the importance of prudential reasoning and judgment regarding the implementation of the Church’s social doctrine, recalling Blessed John XXIII’s own words on the matter in Mater et magistra: “Differences of opinion in the application of principles can sometimes arise even among sincere Catholics. When this happens, they should be careful not to lose their respect and esteem for each other. Instead, they should strive to find points of agreement for effective and suitable action, and not wear themselves out in interminable arguments, and, under pretext of the better or the best, omit to do the good that is possible and therefore obligatory.”
Read more HERE

Sunday, March 6, 2011

Direction for Our Times?

In the 1980s a false 'visionary' was travelling the world with her messages. She managed to deceive a Marian theologian from Dublin who promoted her throughout Ireland and Europe. Vassula Rydén, a divorcee, not Catholic, claiming, from November 1985, to be receiving private revelations dictated by an entity which she identifies with Jesus. The messages are available in 10 to 12 volumes.

The Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith issued two warnings and invites all the faithful not to regard Mrs. her writings and speeches "as supernatural and to preserve the purity of the faith that the Lord has entrusted to the Church". The Congregation continues to refrain from an explicit condemnation,simply because Mrs Rydén, a Greek Orthodox, does not fall under the jurisdiction of the Church.

In 2003 another divorced woman appeared claiming to have 'conversations' with Jesus, the saints, God the Father, and I guess, everyone in Heaven. And she has written 'volumes'. No surprise.

In 2005 a thread started on a Catholic Internet forum named “The Catholic Community Forum.” A forum member going by the name “MDS” posted on September 17, 2005 an E-mail exchange that he had with a representative of the Direction for Our Times DFOT apostolate, later reproduced on another website, Unity Publishing. MDS was troubled that the DFOT representative was unwilling to name Anne’s Bishop. MDS wanted to write to the Bishop and ask for a statement as to where Anne and her apostolate canonically stood in his Diocese. MDS wasn't happy with the reply so he then took the E-mail exchange to the Catholic Community Forum for their thoughts. Unity Publishing picked up the thread and followed up the story. The woman 'Anne' was using a false name saying 'heaven' told her not to reveal her real name in order to protect her family. Richard Salbato from Unity Publishing exposed her real name as Kathryn Ann Clarke, a divorcee from Chicago.

Mr. Salbato disclosed the written source of his expose of Anne as Kathryn. He produced E-mail correspondence (goes with a warning of explicit language!) of an intimate conversation between Anne/Kathryn and her DFOT C.E.O. The correspondence revealed "a heavily vulgar woman who claimed to be receiving messages from heaven even while the correspondence was occurring." (Wiki). Her travel engagements were reduced to zero and she indicated to Catholic writer Deal Hudson that she only travels when [heaven] tells her to travel.

Getting back to MDS and the bishop in question. 'Anne' or her associates sought the Imprimatur which was obtained on September 8, 2005 by Bishop Escaler of the Philippines.

Bishop Escaler was retired as of 1997, which has led to questions about the validity of his Imprimatur for her Volumes. For a more detailed analysis on this read here.

It turns out that 'Anne' the lay apostle lives in Co. Cavan, Ireland and her bishop is Leo O'Reilly. He granted permission in 2006 for her materials to be disseminated. He states, "In so far as I am able to judge, she is orthodox in her writings and teaching." On the DFOT website they quote the Bishop:
I have known "Anne," the founder of the movement, for several years. She is a Catholic in good standing in the diocese, a wife and mother of small children, and a woman of deep spirituality.
Bishop O'Reilly never once actually states in his 2006 letter that he has given permission for her materials to be disseminated. What he does say is that she does not publish anything without his permission. It is presumed that he has given permission, but his letter is not precise. Fine. But she is claiming to have supernatural 'conversations' and he is ignoring the vulgar 'conversations' she had with her CEO publisher. Why is this? Questions need to be asked.

Finally, the 'volumes' are being published and distributed by none other than Veritas, the publishing company and chain of bookstores owned by the Irish Bishops Conference.

Recommended reading - the E-mail correspondence between Kathryn Ann Clarke and her CEO.

While recognising the validity of Unity Publishing's findings on Anne the lay apostle, Cailin does not endorse the site itself.

Thursday, March 3, 2011

Genuine and True

A young man recently sent me a private message on Facebook to tell me I'm wasting my time talking about God, because God doesn't exist.

I replied, "I believe He does indeed exist".

He responded, "Do you have any evidence to prove that God exists?"

"Yes. Jesus.", I answered.

When someone claims to have a supernatural vision of, for example, Our Lady, the Church does not say that it believes that Our Lady is appearing, but instead that it believes the person who claims that they have had a vision is telling the truth. The individual goes through a rigorous examination to see if they are a person of honesty, credibility, truthfulness, and of sound mind and spirit.

So how do we know that Jesus is the Son of God? A good place to begin is to study the testimony of the witnesses. The disciples witnessed Jesus perform miracles, they witnessed Him calming the sea, they witnessed Him on Mount Tabor with Moses and Elijah, and heard the voice of God say "This is my Son, the beloved, listen to Him". And above all St. John the Evangelist tells us:
"But when they came to Jesus and found that he was already dead, they did not break his legs.
But one of the soldiers pierced his side with a spear, and at once there came out blood and water.
And he who saw it, has given testimony, and his testimony is true. And he knows that he what he says is true; that you also may believe."
John 19:33-35
A closer look at the word 'true' reveals:
True (ἀληθινὴ)
Genuine, according to the true ideal of what testimony should be.

True (ἀληθῆ)
Literally, true things. As distinguished from false. Thus, by the use of the two words for true, there are brought out, as Westcott remarks, the two conditions which testimony ought to satisfy; the first, that he who gives it should be competent to speak with authority; and the second, that the account of his experience should be exact."
Three days after his death, Jesus appeared to Mary Magdalen and the other disciples. What Jesus said came true. And on the third day......

Yes, I believe God does indeed exist.

Saturday, February 19, 2011

Saint Peter Canisius

Pope Benedict XVI's Wednesday General Audience is spiritual food for the soul. On Wednesday the 9th February, the Pope talked about Saint Peter Canisius.


Thursday, February 17, 2011

The Morning After Pill

Catholic Teaching
Statement on the So-Called "Morning-After Pill" Pontifical Academy for Life, October 31, 2000

It is a well-known chemical product (of the hormonal type) which has frequently been presented by many in the field and by the mass media as a mere contraceptive or, more precisely, as an "emergency contraceptive", which can be used within a short time after a presumably fertile act of sexual intercourse, should one wish to prevent the continuation of an unwanted pregnancy.

The inevitable critical reactions of those who have raised serious doubts about how this product works, namely, that its action is not merely "contraceptive" but "abortifacient", have received the very hasty reply that such concerns appear unfounded, since the morning-after pill has an "anti-implantation" effect, thus implicitly suggesting a clear distinction between abortion and interception (preventing the implantation of the fertilized ovum, i.e., the embryo, in the uterine wall).

Considering that the use of this product concerns fundamental human goods and values, to the point of involving the origins of human life itself, the Pontifical Academy for Life feels the pressing duty and definite need to offer some clarifications and considerations on the subject, reaffirming moreover already well-known ethical positions supported by precise scientific data and reinforced by Catholic doctrine.

The morning-after pill is a hormone-based preparation (it can contain oestrogens, oestrogen/progestogens or only progestogens) which, within and no later than 72 hours after a presumably fertile act of sexual intercourse, has a predominantly "anti-implantation" function, i.e., it prevents a possible fertilized ovum (which is a human embryo), by now in the blastocyst stage of its development (fifth to sixth day after fertilization), from being implanted in the uterine wall by a process of altering the wall itself. The final result will thus be the expulsion and loss of this embryo. Only if this pill were to be taken several days before the moment of ovulation could it sometimes act to prevent the latter (in this case it would function as a typical "contraceptive"). However, the woman who uses this kind of pill does so in the fear that she may be in her fertile period and therefore intends to cause the expulsion of a possible new conceptus; above all, it would be unrealistic to think that a woman, finding herself in the situation of wanting to use an emergency contraceptive, would be able to know exactly and opportunely her current state of fertility.

The decision to use the term "fertilized ovum" to indicate the earliest phases of embryonic development can in no way lead to an artificial value distinction between different moments in the development of the same human individual. In other words, if it can be useful, for reasons of scientific description, to distinguish with conventional terms (fertilized ovum, embryo, fetus, etc.) different moments in a single growth process, it can never be legitimate to decide arbitrarily that the human individual has greater or lesser value (with the resulting variation in the duty to protect it) according to its stage of development.

It is clear, therefore, that the proven "anti-implantation" action of the morning-after pill is really nothing other than a chemically induced abortion. It is neither intellectually consistent nor scientifically justifiable to say that we are not dealing with the same thing. Moreover, it seems sufficiently clear that those who ask for or offer this pill are seeking the direct termination of a possible pregnancy already in progress, just as in the case of abortion. Pregnancy, in fact, begins with fertilization and not with the implantation of the blastocyst in the uterine wall, which is what is being implicitly suggested.

Consequently, from the ethical standpoint the same absolute unlawfulness of abortifacient procedures also applies to distributing, prescribing and taking the morning-after pill. All who, whether sharing the intention or not, directly co-operate with this procedure are also morally responsible for it.

A further consideration should be made regarding the use of the morning-after pill in relation to the application of Law 194/78, which in Italy regulates the conditions and procedures for the voluntary termination of pregnancy. Saying that the pill is an "anti-implantation" product, instead of using the more transparent term "abortifacient", makes it possible to avoid all the obligatory procedures required by Law 194 in order to terminate a pregnancy (prior interview, verification of pregnancy, determination of growth stage, time for reflection, etc.), by practising a form of abortion that is completely hidden and cannot be recorded by any institution. All this seems, then, to be in direct contradiction to the correct application of Law 194, itself debatable.

In the end, since these procedures are becoming more widespread, we strongly urge everyone who works in this sector to make a firm objection of moral conscience, which will bear courageous and practical witness to the inalienable value of human life, especially in view of the new hidden forms of aggression against the weakest and most defenceless individuals, as is the case with a human embryo.

Monday, February 14, 2011

A New Evangelisation

THE Pope will be officially told the Irish Catholic Church is "on the edge" of national collapse and has only five to 10 years to make a radical recovery by giving laymen and women a greater say in decision-making.
So says John Cooney, religion correspondent, of The Irish Independent.

Cooney reports that Cardinal Sean O'Malley, the archbishop of Boston, gave this commitment at a private meeting with members of the recently formed Catholic Priests' Association.

Redemptorist priest Fr Tony Flannery, revealed that Cardinal O'Mallley engaged in "serious discussion" with the association. Fr. Flannery was addressing the annual meeting of The People of God, (Pobal Dé), a lay reform group, who want more involvement in Church leadership and decision-making by the laity.

Fr Flannery said Cardinal O'Malley told the association that the Irish church had a decade, at most, to avoid falling over the edge and "becoming like other European countries" where religion is marginal to society.


Do not listen to the prophets of doom, who wish to change the RCC to suit their own lifestyles and Celtic spirituality. The Holy Spirit is very alive and active in Ireland. The Lord has been preparing faithful people for many years now to go out into the whole world and proclaim the Good News. The Lord is in charge, but before the new evangelisation could begin, the 'filth' in the Church needed to be cleared out. Dirty and clean water cannot be mixed in the same glass without sullying the purity of the water. So, yes, the time is here. The ground has been prepared. The seeds are being sown at this very time. And the harvest will be rich. In due time.

Saturday, February 12, 2011

A Vote for Labour is a vote for Abortion


Michael D Higgins, Labour Party, talked to Newstalk Radio on Friday 11th February about David Quinn, Iona Institute. The original broadcast can be found here. If you go to part 3 of the show and jump to 53:30.

David wrote a great piece in the Irish Independent on the 11th entitled
"Any vote for the Labour Party is a vote for abortion".
He simply pointed out the hypocrisy of the Labour Party for canvassing outside Sunday Masses, looking for votes from Catholics who no doubt are pro-life. David pointed out the fact that many of the Sunday Mass goers don't actually know that Labour intends to bring in abortion on demand, based on the UK model.

Higgins' opening line is
"This is a scandalous article".
Where's the scandal? David is speaking the truth. Is the scandal not that Labour want to introduce abortion on demand? It is scandalous that they are attempting to deceive Catholic voters. They want to destroy the life of the unborn right up to birth in the name of the goddess 'choice'? This is scandalous.

He says there is an arrogant misstatement in every paragraph! He also calls it rubbish:
"I know all this rubbish and the black stuff that's in it".
What on earth is he into? What black stuff? He calls the 'Alive' newspaper a 'rag' newspaper,(run by the Dominicans). Any man who would react so strongly to the truth turns the torch right around on his own face.

And this man is running to be the President of Ireland next November. God help us.

JUST OUT: The Labour Party Equality Chairman, Bernard Cantillon has said that he wants "ABORTION ON DEMAND IN IRELAND NOW." Mr Cantillon made his comment in a Facebook conversation.

Saturday, February 5, 2011

New Missal Translation

The Association of Catholic Priests, representing about 400 of Ireland’s 4,500 priests has made an urgent plea to the country’s bishops to postpone the introduction of the new English translation of the Missal for at least another five years.

Representatives from the priests’ group said the proposed literal translations from Latin had produced texts that were “archaic, elitist and obscure and not in keeping with the natural rhythm, cadence and syntax of the English language”.

What? Do they think the Sacred Liturgy is a novel?

Fr Dermot Lane, president of Mater Dei Institute of Education in Dublin, said the priests want the bishops to begin consulting with priests, liturgical committees and lay people to develop new texts that would inspire and encourage the faithful.

These priests do not represent the laity. Is it not very presumptuous of the priests to decide for us lay people what will or will not inspire and encourage us? Such arrogance. They seem to think that the Irish people will not be able to 'understand' the new translation. We are mature adults, with mature faith, who love and are faithful to the Magisterium of the Church. To be quite honest I'd rather listen to the Pope and our bishops and embrace what they have proposed rather than rebellious, anti-hierarchical, sometimes heretical priests.
One priest, Fr Gerard Alwill, a priest in the Diocese of Kilmore, said:
“We are saying very clearly that this new translation of the Missal is not acceptable… We are deeply concerned that if these new texts are imposed, they could create chaos in our church. Our Church doesn’t need chaos at this time."
Fr PJ Madden said the association feared that the imposition by the Vatican of a revised prayer book containing arcane language would lead to
"chaos and confusion".
Is it not possible that the 1970 translation in use for the past forty years is seriously flawed and in fact has caused much confusion among the laity. There is much less ‘full and active participation’ in the Mass in Ireland now than there was 40 years ago. Perhaps the current English translation, ‘a new and improved version’ of which the ACP would welcome, is one of the reasons for this?

Surely the new English translation of the Roman Missal represents "a catechetical moment for the whole Church" in the country. I look forward to the moment when only the priest says "Through Him, with Him, in Him" and the congregation says with one voice "Amen"! I look forward to the moment when the congregation will kneel at the Consecration and at the appropriate parts of the Mass instead of the situation we have at the moment where the people either don't know or don't care. What have the Priests of the Priests' Association done in the last 30 years to address that? Nothing!

The liberals in the Church are scared and scare-mongering. Their drift from Holy Tradition to the point of protestantising the Catholic Church has finally been road blocked.

Deo gracias.

Newspaper coverage:

Irish priests claim new Mass translation is ‘elitist and sexist’.

Priests fear Mass confusion as Vatican gets lost in translation.

"He took the cup."

Priests say missal is 'sexist and elitist'

Priests’ Association “gravely concerned” over new missal.

A list of Catholic Blogs with reference to the New Missal.


Dissident Irish priests try to create discord and resentment against the new translation.