Monday, September 28, 2015

A moment with St. Maria Goretti in Philadelphia

By Michelle Bauman

(Catholic News Agency) Pilgrims roaming the streets of downtown Philadelphia in the days before Pope Francis’ arrival had the opportunity to venerate one of the Church’s youngest canonized saints.

The relics of St. Maria Goretti – on tour throughout the U.S. – spent a few days at St. John the Evangelist Church.

Gathered from across the globe for the World Meeting of Families, pilgrims stood patiently in lines that stretched back several city blocks, waiting for a few moments to pray in front of the young saint’s body.

The story of St. Maria Goretti is a beautiful witness of forgiveness. At age 11, she was approached by neighboring farmhand Alessandro Serenelli, who attempted to seduce her. She rejected his advances, and he tried to rape her. When she continued to fight back, he stabbed her 14 times, killing her. As she died, she told him that she forgave him and hoped that he would one day be in heaven with her.
Eventually, Serenelli underwent a powerful conversion and became a lay brother. There have been calls of his canonization cause to be opened.


Friday, September 25, 2015

Cardinal Danneels Admits Being in Mafia Dedicated to Unseat Pope Benedict XVI

By Tantumblogo

Pride goeth before the fall.  The modernists are apparently feeling very powerful and secure, because they are starting to open their mouths and crow about both their opposition to Pope Benedict XVI, dropping hints they played a role in his abdication, as well as quite possibly illicitly organizing to elect Pope Francis.
Further serious concerns are being raised about Cardinal Godfried Danneels, one of the papal delegates chosen to attend the upcoming Ordinary Synod on the Family, after the archbishop emeritus of Brussels confessed this week to being part of a radical “mafia” reformist group opposed to Benedict XVI.
It was also revealed this week that he once wrote a letter to the Belgium government favoring same-sex “marriage” legislation because it ended discrimination against LGBT groups.
The cardinal is already known for having once advised the king of Belgium to sign an abortion law in 1990, for telling a victim of clerical sex abuse to keep quiet, and for refusing to forbid pornographic, “educational” materials being used in Belgian Catholic schools.
He also once said same-sex “marriage” was a “positive development,” although he has sought to distinguish such a union from the Church’s understanding of marriage.
……..At the launch of the book in Brussels this week, the cardinal said he was part of a secret club of cardinals opposed to Pope Benedict XVI.
He called it a “mafia” club that bore the name of St. Gallen. The group wanted a drastic reform of the Church, to make it “much more modern”, and for Cardinal Jorge Bergoglio to head it. The group, which also comprised Cardinal Walter Kasper and the late Jesuit Cardinal Carlo Maria Martini, has been documented in Austen Ivereigh’s biography of Pope Francis, The Great Reformer.
The plain implication is that these men were probably driving forces behind the Vatileaks and other difficulties that plagued PBXVI’s pontificate, helping convince the beleaguered Pope Emeritus that abdication was his best alternative.  Of course, there have also been dark hints of a turncoat “disciple” of Ratzinger that played a key role in convincing him to abdicate, promising him that someone of a like mind would be elected and bring the constant stream of scandals afflicting the Vatican to an end.  Who that turncoat is has not been revealed to date.

Nevertheless, this second admission, coupled with admissions made in the book alluded to in Pentin’s post above (The Great Reformer), seems to point to at least a reasonable possibility that there was illegal collusion between various cardinals at the conclave of 2013... (continued)


Speaker John Boehner Will Resign From Congress

(New York Times) WASHINGTON — Speaker John A. Boehner, under intense pressure from conservatives in his party, will resign one of the most powerful positions in government and give up his House seat at the end of October, throwing Congress into chaos as it tries to avert a government shutdown.

Mr. Boehner made the announcement in an emotional meeting with his fellow Republicans on Friday morning...

Most recently, Mr. Boehner, 65, was trying to craft a solution to keep the government open through the rest of the year, but was under pressure from a growing base of conservatives who told him that they would not vote for a bill that did not defund Planned Parenthood. Several of those members were on a path to remove Mr. Boehner as speaker, though their ability to do so was far from certain... (continued)


Tuesday, September 22, 2015

Pope Francis Reverses Position On Capitalism After Seeing Wide Variety Of American Oreos

(The Onion) WASHINGTON—Admitting the startling discovery had compelled him to reexamine his long-held beliefs, His Holiness Pope Francis announced Tuesday that he had reversed his critical stance toward capitalism after seeing the immense variety of Oreos available in the United States. “Oh, my goodness, look at all these! Golden Oreos, Cookie Dough Oreos, Mega Stuf Oreos, Birthday Cake Oreos—perhaps the system of free enterprise is not as terrible as I once feared,” said the visibly awed bishop of Rome while visiting a Washington, D.C. supermarket, adding that the sheer diversity of flavors, various colors and quantities of creme filling, and presence or absence of an outer fudge layer had led to a profound philosophical shift in his feelings toward the global economy and opened his eyes to the remarkable capabilities of the free market. “Only a truly exceptional and powerful economic system would be capable of producing so many limited-edition and holiday-themed flavors of a single cookie brand, such as these extraordinary Key Lime Pie Oreos and Candy Corn Oreos. This is not a force of global impoverishment at all, but one of endless enrichment.” At press time, the pontiff had reportedly withdrawn his acceptance of capitalism, calling any system that would unleash a Roadhouse Chili Monster Slim Jim on the public “an unholy abomination.”


Monday, September 21, 2015


(Catholic League) Bill Donohue comments on an article in yesterday’s Washington Post by columnist George Will; it is syndicated in other papers today:

“He [the pope] stands against modernity, rationality, science and, ultimately…open societies.” This is the kind of anti-Catholic trope that uneducated bigots have been trotting out for about a century. Now it is being advanced by George Will, an atheist whose latest cause is assisted suicide. He is an educated man, but his grasp of Catholicism is on a par with that of Bill Maher’s.

In my latest book, The Catholic Advantage: How Health, Happiness, and Heaven Await the Faithful, I took Will to task for showcasing his ignorance of my religion when, in the 1980s, he misinterpreted what Cardinal John O’Connor meant when he said Catholicism is a “theology of suffering.” New York City Mayor Ed Koch got it, but it was over Will’s head.

Not surprisingly, Will doesn’t like Pope Francis. The Holy Father, he opines, is known for emitting “clouds of sanctimony.” He speaks with authority: pomposity, which is a close cousin to sanctimony, is his signature style. More important is his twisting of the pope’s position on materialism to mean that he is anti-electricity.

Will is a wordsmith, so he ought to know the difference between consumerism and “compulsive consumerism.” The latter is indeed a sin (a concept that is admittedly hard for atheists to understand). Why? Because it suggests extravagance, the kind of materialistic indulgence that no Christian can condone.

If it weren’t for Catholicism, there would be no Age of Science, so it is mind-boggling that Will would suggest otherwise. More recently, as Pope Benedict XVI has said, when faith and reason are severed, serious problems emerge. Will gets the latter but not the former. Neither did the 20th century’s totalitarians.



Saturday, September 12, 2015

Mecca crane collapse `act of God`: Engineer

(Z News) Mecca: The collapse of a construction crane that killed 107 people at Mecca`s Grand Mosque was "an act of God" and not due to a technical fault, an engineer for the developer said Saturday.

The massive red and white crane, which crashed into the court of the mosque during a rainstorm and high winds Friday, also injured around 200 people.

The engineer for Saudi Binladin Group, which is carrying out a massive expansion of the mosque, told AFP the crane, like many others on the project, had been there for three or four years without any problem.

"It was not a technical issue at all," said the engineer, who asked not to be identified.
"I can only say that what happened was beyond the power of humans. It was an act of God and, to my knowledge, there was no human fault in it at all..."

Saudi Binladin Group belongs to the family of the late al Qaeda leader Osama bin Laden.


Monday, September 7, 2015

Pope Francis Reforms Roman Catholic Marriage Annulment Procedures

(Reuters) VATICAN CITY — Pope Francis has reformed the Roman Catholic Church's cumbersome procedures for marriage annulments, a decision keenly awaited by many couples around the world who have divorced and remarried outside the church.

The Vatican said Monday that the pope had written a document known as a Motu Proprio, Latin for "by his own initiative," which changes the way Catholics get annulments.

The details of the document, which is expected to streamline and simplify the procedure, will be released Tuesday at a Vatican news conference.

An annulment, formally known as a "decree of nullity," is a ruling that a marriage was not valid according to church law because certain prerequisites, such as free will, psychological maturity and openness to having children, were lacking.

The 1.2 billion-member church does not recognize divorce. Catholics who divorce and remarry outside the church in civil services are considered to be still married to their first spouses and living in a state of sin. This bars them from receiving sacraments such as communion.

The new procedures follow the pope's appointment a year ago of an 11-member commission of lawyers and theologians to propose reform of the process. The Vatican said at the time that he wanted to "simplify and streamline" the procedure while "safeguarding the principle of the indissolubility of marriage."

The situation of divorced and remarried Catholics who want to fully participate in the church is a topic of great debate, particularly in countries such as the U.S. and Germany, and it will be a main topic at a synod of bishops from around the world at the Vatican next month.

Making it easier for divorced couples to receive annulments would allow them to return to the sacraments.

Progressive bishops want the church to be more merciful toward Catholics whose first marriages have failed.

One Vatican expert on marriage annulments said that the new rules would not change the criteria for getting annulments but that they would make the procedures easier.


A conservative revolt is brewing inside the Vatican

U.S. Cardinal Raymond Leo Burke, left, stands by Pope Francis saluting bishops, at the end of weekly general audience in St. Peter's Square at the Vatican, Sept. 2, 2015. (Alessandra Tarantino/AP)

On a sunny morning earlier this year, a camera crew entered a well-appointed apartment just outside the 9th-century gates of Vatican City. Pristinely dressed in the black robes and scarlet sash of the princes of the Roman Catholic Church, the Wisconsin-born Cardinal Raymond Burke sat in his elaborately upholstered armchair and appeared to issue a warning to Pope Francis.
A staunch conservative and Vatican bureaucrat, Burke had been demoted by the pope a few months earlier, but it did not take the fight out of him. Francis had been backing a more inclusive era, giving space to progressive voices on divorced Catholics as well as gays and lesbians. In front of the camera, Burke said he would “resist” liberal changes — and seemed to caution Francis about the limits of his authority. “One must be very attentive regarding the power of the pope,” Burke told the French news crew.

Papal power, Burke warned, “is not absolute.” He added, “The pope does not have the power to change teaching [or] doctrine.”

Burke’s words belied a growing sense of alarm among strict conservatives, exposing what is fast emerging as a culture war over Francis’s papacy and the powerful hierarchy that governs the Roman Catholic Church.

This month, Francis makes his first trip to the United States at a time when his progressive allies are heralding him as a revolutionary, a man who only last week broadened the power of priests to forgive women who commit what Catholic teachings call the “mortal sin” of abortion during his newly declared “year of mercy” starting in December. On Sunday, he called for “every” Catholic parish in Europe to offer shelter to one refugee family from the thousands of asylum-seekers risking all to escape war-torn Syria and other pockets of conflict and poverty.

Yet as he upends church convention, Francis also is grappling with a conservative backlash to the liberal momentum building inside the church. In more than a dozen interviews, including with seven senior church officials, insiders say the change has left the hierarchy more polarized over the direction of the church than at any point since the great papal reformers of the 1960s.

The conservative rebellion is taking on many guises, in public comments, yes, but also in the rising popularity of conservative Catholic Web sites promoting Francis dissenters; books and promotional materials backed by conservative clerics seeking to counter the liberal trend; and leaks to the news media, aimed at Vatican reformers.

In his recent comments, Burke was also merely stating fact. Despite the vast powers of the pope, church doctrine serves as a kind of constitution. And for liberal reformers, the bruising theological pushback by conservatives is complicating efforts to translate the pope’s transformative style into tangible changes... (continued)


Sunday, September 6, 2015

CDF: Medjugorje Parish Priest and "Seers" Not Allowed to Spread Messages Within the Parish of Medjugorje

By Gianluca Barile

Via Google Translation:

"The Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, with a warning, signed by Cardinal Gerhard Ludwig Müller, has forbidden the parish priest, Fr. Marinko Sakota, and six alleged seers who claim to see the "Lady" for 34 years, to take evidence or spread "messages" within the parish of Medjugorje. It is a blow dealt to the "Ministry of Propaganda" of Medjugorje, the machine of the communication of the alleged seers, so dubbed because it is able to convey, in near real time, the lyrics of "messages", already translated into several languages in every corner of the world, thanks to social networks and the countless devotional sites. This is, in yet another confirmation, after the ban imposed on some of the alleged visionaries to hold public meetings in Italian Dioceses, which we proceed towards a "black smoke" regarding the recognition of the supposed apparitions..." (continued)


Tuesday, September 1, 2015

Father John Corapi Update

By Matt C. Abbott

(Renew America)  A bit of good news to share: A reliable source has informed me that Father John Corapi, a popular priest among orthodox Catholics who departed public life after a tumultuous period a few years ago, remains in the priesthood and is re-establishing his spiritual life.

There's no indication he'll be returning to public life anytime soon, if ever. However, it's nice to know that Father Corapi can at least be a quiet prayer warrior during this extremely difficult time in the Church and world.

I won't go into the particulars about what transpired in the past – it's water under the bridge – and I'm sure there's information on the Internet (some of it more reliable than other information, obviously) for those who may not be familiar with the situation. Plus, those who really didn't pay attention to him in the first place likely don't care one way or the other about his current status.

The bottom line is that we all are wounded and spiritually/morally fall often (I know I do!). We just have to try our best to keep moving forward in faith in this "valley of tears." A very difficult task, I must say. That doesn't mean condoning moral corruption or remaining silent about it, but we all need God's mercy.

Our Lady of Perpetual Help, pray for us.



From Father Z:
Huge news. This was under embargo till noon, Rome time, which must be honored. [UPDATE: The Bollettino is now available HERE]
The Year of Mercy begins 8 December 2015 until 20 November 2016.

It is about to be announced that the Holy Father has sent a letter to Archbishop Rino Fisichella, President of the Pontifical Council for the Promotion of the New Evangelization about the upcoming Extraordinary Year of Mercy...  (continued)