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Archive for September, 2014

sandracano3

On the day that Roe v. Wade was handed down in 1973, a companion case, Doe v. Bolton was handed down as well. The Doe case made abortion legal in all nine months of pregnancy. Like Norma McCorvey of the Roe case, Bolton’s name was used without her knowledge or consent. From Lifesite News:

Cano told the Catholic Register, “It’s a nightmare to be connected to a case that I never wanted to be connected to. Doe v. Bolton allows abortion up to the ninth month. This case takes children’s lives.”

“Back in 1970,” Cano begins, “I had a very complicated marriage and had two children in foster care. I was pregnant and wanted to get my babies back from foster care. I was poor, uneducated and ignorant. My life was very unstable. I was in a survival state. I went to Atlanta Legal Aid to get a divorce. Whoever was there to try to help me, I trusted. That’s how I became unknowingly involved with Doe v. Bolton. Never once did I know that we were going to kill babies.

“I can’t understand how a case like this could go to the Supreme Court without anyone knowing or speaking to me to find out if what the attorney was presenting to the court was true. I was so ignorant I didn’t know that there were two cases that legalized abortion.

“I ran away to Oklahoma to keep from having an abortion. They knew I was against abortion. Grady Memorial Hospital said I had gone before a panel of nine doctors and nurses to seek an abortion. I never sought an abortion. The hospital has no records because I never went to the hospital.

“It was only later that I learned that, through Margie Pitt Hames, I had sued Georgia Baptist Hospital to have an abortion.”

The Register asked how she discovered the truth and she replied, “In 1974, I went to Georgia Right to Life to try to find someone to help me. I told them that I was the woman who was involved in the abortion law, but didn’t know what it was about. They sent me to Fayetteville to seek help. On and off over the years, I would come forward, but when you don’t have money or people willing to help, a lot of people think you’re someone off the nut wagon.

“In the 1980s, I talked to an Atlanta Journal and Constitution newspaper reporter. She told me I had to prove who I was. I asked, “How do you do that?” She told me I had to go down to the court to verify that I was the person involved in the case. When I did that, they told me I had to go to the Federal Archives building. When I did that, they gave me this humongous book to look through. I didn’t understand half of it. I was out of my league. There was also a sealed envelope. I wanted to open it, but couldn’t. They told me that I would have to go to the court to have my records unsealed. Someone at the court showed me how to petition the court to unseal the records.

“A week later, Judge Owen Foster called me. He told me, “I don’t normally do this, but think you need a lawyer. We’re going to be hearing your case.” I found an attorney and went down to the court to unseal the records. Margie Pitt Hames didn’t want me to open the records. After unsealing the records I wrote to the Supreme Court. They said that the statute of limitations had passed.”

“They connected my name to a case that I never knew about in the beginning, never participated in, never believed in. I carried a guilt for many, many years. I was just a pawn,” Cano told The Blaze.

Read the rest here.

Eternal Rest grant unto her, O Lord, and let Perpetual Light shine upon her.
May she rest in Peace, Amen.

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Supporting Jill Stanek

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On December 24, 2009 Pro-life nurse/blogger/speaker/activist/apostle, Jill Stanek, gave me the Christmas gift of a lifetime. After having encouraged and even insisted that I start my own blog, Jill promoted it on her own extremely popular blog. See it here.

For those who may not know, Jill was the Ob/Gyn nurse who broke open wide the issue of babies born alive and left to die. Some are from botched abortions, some having severe congenital anomalies. In insisting that this issue come into the light it cost Jill her livelihood as a nurse. If there is anyone more detestable in medicine than a whistleblower, it’s a Christian, pro-life whistleblower. Jill abandoned the peace and economic surety of a solid nursing career to follow the lead of the Holy Spirit into the wilderness of the life issues. Like Peter and the other apostles who left their fishermen’s nets to follow Jesus, Jill left it all behind and never looked back.

In that time, Jill jumped into the emerging world of blogging, recognizing the internet as the new town square for the shrinking global village. She has gathered under her roof at Jillstanek.com every activist, physician, scientist, clergy person with a positive program and promoted their work. She has become a hub of news and information. When Twitter emerged, Jill jumped right on board and has used the medium to mount several successful campaigns against the abortion industry.

All during that time, she has crisscrossed the nation and traveled the globe in her apostolic mission to end abortion and restore a culture of life and a civilization of love. Those of us who do so know the toll this takes on our family lives and on our finances. In all of that time Jill has never asked for support for her blog, and following her example neither have I. However, today Jill has posted on her blog a very modest request for support. Read it here. It is the first time in her blog’s eight years that she has done so. If she’s asking, then there is good reason.

I would humbly ask that those reading this consider lending support for Jill’s ongoing and indefatigable work in ending this horrendous scourge of abortion. Click the link to her site, read her request, consider how incredibly modest her request is (compared to many who always ask for as much as you can possibly afford), and then prayerfully consider your response.

I am only one of many, many people with whom Jill Stanek has been completely generous with her time and resources.

It’s reciprocity time.

God Bless.

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John Vianney, Good and Holy Priest
O holy Priest of Ars, you lived in an age of much upheaval, in a time when men turned their backs on God. Your bishop told of a parish to which he wished to send you where there was no love. He assigned you to Ars and said that you would be the Priest who would enable the people to know the love of God. Not only did you draw these people back to God, but your saintly reputation soon spread and many people were converted to a life of holiness. You said that a good Priest, a Priest after Christ’s own heart is the greatest treasure that God can give a parish. Give us such Priests!

O great St. John Vianney, once again we are living in day of upheaval. There is much evil in the word. Obtain for Cardinal Dolan the grace to persevere in his faith and never to despair. May he walk with the Lord and trust in Him all the days of his life. Obtain through your heavenly intercession, for Cardinal Dolan the grace of modeling his life after that of Jesus Christ, that his people will know the love of God. More than ever the people need him to be able to bring the world to Christ.
Pray for Cardinal Dolan and all Priests, O great Priest of Ars.

Novena Prayer: O holy Priest of Ars, St. John Marie Vianney, you loved God and served Him faithfully as His Priest. Now you see God face to face in heaven. You never despaired but persevered in your faith until you died. Remember now the dangers, fears and anxieties that surround Cardinal Dolan and intercede for him in all his needs and troubles especially console him in his most difficult moments, grant him serenity in the midst of crisis, and protect him from evil. O St. John Vianney, I have confidence in your intercession.
Pray for Cardinal Dolan in a special way during this novena.

Amen.

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pope

Timothy Cardinal Dolan is my archbishop, an as such he is entitled to my respect and obedience. There have only been a couple of times where I have publicly disagreed with him and written of it. It is not bishop-bashing, but rather the strongly worded disagreement of a faithful and respectful son of the Church. As such, critique must always be balanced by prayer for the Cardinal’s intentions. This novena is that prayer. Please join each night after 8PM EST as we pray for Cardinal Dolan’s intentions. We begin…

St. John Vianney, Lover of Penance and Mortification O holy Priest of Ars, you led a life of detachment from worldly pleasures. Your meals consisted of a boiled potato each day; you slept a few hours each night. But you did all of this so that you would be able to serve God to the best of your ability. Your life was portrayed by the saying: We complain when we suffer. We have much more reason to complain when we do not suffer, since nothing likens us to our Lord as the bearing of His cross.

O great St. John Vianney, in these days when we are surrounded by so many comforts and pleasures, it can be so difficult for us to do penance for our sins and live a life of detachment. I resolve to offer some sacrifice today for the expiation of Cardinal Dolan’s sins and the sins of all mankind. Assist Father in accepting the cross God chooses to send him. May he embrace the life of sacrifice to which Priests are called. May he willingly offer his whole life to God! Obtain for Cardinal Dolan the grace to imitate the life of Christ by the bearing of His cross.

Novena Prayer: O holy Priest of Ars, St. John Marie Vianney, you loved God and served Him faithfully as His Priest. Now you see God face to face in heaven. You never despaired but persevered in your faith until you died. Remember now the dangers, fears and anxieties that surround Cardinal Dolan and intercede for him in all his needs and troubles especially console him in his most difficult moments, grant him serenity in the midst of crisis, and protect him from evil. O St. John Vianney, I have confidence in your intercession.
Pray for Cardinal Dolan in a special way during this novena

Amen.

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Timothy Cardinal Dolan is my archbishop, an as such he is entitled to my respect and obedience. There have only been a couple of times where I have publicly disagreed with him and written of it. It is not bishop-bashing, but rather the strongly worded disagreement of a faithful and respectful son of the Church. As such, critique must always be balanced by prayer for the Cardinal’s intentions. This novena is that prayer. Please join each night after 8PM EST as we pray for Cardinal Dolan’s intentions. We begin…

O holy Priest of Ars, your life was filled with humility. You wore an old cassock. You ate meager meals. You realized that before the throne of God, you were one of His creatures made to glorify God and praise Him in all things. You said that the first virtue is humility; the second, humility; and the third, humility. You counseled people to remain humble, remain simple and the more one is so, the more good he will do. Your simplicity of soul and your uncluttered way of life led you to sanctity.

O humble St. John Vianney, when Cardinal Dolan forgets he is totally dependent on God for everything, intercede for him with Almighty God, to allow him to see that without His Creator nothing is possible and that he must rely on God for everything. He is his Creator, who keeps him in existence at every moment. Obtain for Cardinal Dolan the grace of humility. May his life exemplify your humility and simplicity, a life uncluttered, a life totally dependent on God.

Novena Prayer: O holy Priest of Ars, St. John Marie Vianney, you loved God and served Him faithfully as His Priest. Now you see God face to face in heaven. You never despaired but persevered in your faith until you died. Remember now the dangers, fears and anxieties that surround Cardinal Dolan and intercede for him in all his needs and troubles especially console him in his most difficult moments, grant him serenity in the midst of crisis, and protect him from evil. O St. John Vianney, I have confidence in your intercession.
Pray for Cardinal Dolan in a special way during this novena.

Amen.

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Compass_T_E

In the debates that have sprung up on the place within the Church for homosexual and lesbian persons, many point toward the argument over a biological basis for sexual orientation. Apart from the fact that there is no real credible science regarding a biological basis for orientation, the argument misses the mark by a mile… on both sides.

I often ask students to consider that heterosexual orientation and sex drive is in all likelihood rooted in brain structure, as well as biochemical and genetic function. If that is true, then a biological basis for same-sex attraction can be stipulated (if only for argument’s sake). Such stipulation does not rule out the effects of child rape and imprinting as a neurological mechanism that follows on environmental factors. In that case, a biological mechanism can rightly be seen as an intrinsic disordering of normal function.

But let’s stipulate, for a moment that sexual orientation, especially heterosexual orientation is indeed biologically rooted and determined.

What has this to do with moral law, or reshaping moral norms?

It is a fallacy put forth by homosexuals that biological orientation ought to be the basis for changing the rules on marriage and sex within the Church. It supposes that all heterosexuals are free to marry by dint of orientation. Nothing could be further from the truth.

Every diocese in the United States has a Marriage Tribunal with stacks and stacks of active annulment files on any given day. There are all manner of impediments to the valid exchange of vows, and it is the investigative work of the tribunal to ascertain whether any impediments existed at the time vows were exchanged.

Among the impediments to marriage is impotence on the part of the male. If a man cannot engage in intercourse, the couple cannot consummate the marriage. These denials of applications for holy matrimony between two people who love one another with all their hearts are some of the most difficult to deal with. Homosexuals and lesbians cannot consummate their “marriages,” cannot enter into that physical exchange of radical self-donation that brings forth new life from such an embrace. They cannot consummate God’s wise design. Neither can many other heterosexuals.

There are people who cannot marry because of emotional or developmental disability or delay. There are many who are developed enough to desire the good of marriage, and KNOW that they are not deemed desirable enough for marriage. It is at once heartbreaking and at the same time an opportunity for channeling the desire to love, to sacrifice for another. There isn’t a false dichotomy between marriage and an “everyone else” category, with everyone else living in limbo. There are all sorts of dynamic single states.

That is where our priests and religious, our consecrated single laity are the examples of credibility. Not all are called to, or capable of marriage. “Some freely renounce it for the Kingdom” (Matt 19:12), and the Church has a long and rich history in doing it all very well.

So arguments over biological basis of orientation are really irrelevant within the Church. God has a wise design, and that wise design excludes many heterosexuals from sacramental marriage and leads them into equally fulfilling lives of sacrificial love outside of marriage. There is no room within that design for surrogate motherhood, with childless couples of any orientation using women as broodmares and bitches, reducing the glory of womanhood to that of human livestock.

There is no room for lifestyles that have as a celebrated principle that motherhood and mothers are entirely unnecessary in the life of a child.

There is no room for lifestyles that have as a celebrated principle that fatherhood and fathers are entirely unnecessary in the life of a child.

The only orientation that matters is God’s wise design. There are all manner of moral means to bring oneself into conformity with that wise design. The difference between virtue and vice is the assertion of the will toward or against God’s design.

Biology has nothing to do with it.

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CARDINAL DOLAN PRAYS DURING MASS EARLIER THIS YEAR

Timothy Cardinal Dolan is my archbishop, an as such he is entitled to my respect and obedience. There have only been a couple of times where I have publicly disagreed with him and written of it. It is not bishop-bashing, but rather the strongly worded disagreement of a faithful and respectful son of the Church. As such, critique must always be balanced by prayer for the Cardinal’s intentions. This novena is that prayer. Please join each night after 8PM EST as we pray for Cardinal Dolan’s intentions. We begin…

St. John Vianney, Model of Purity O holy Priest of Ars, your life was a model of purity. Your life of chastity was a source of edification to all. You said that when a soul is pure all the court of heaven looks upon it with great joy. Today we are experiencing a great disregard for the virtue of purity; it is looked upon with ridicule by worldly standards.

O great St. John Vianney, more than ever before, we need your prayers and help in avoiding sins of impurity. I ask you to help Cardinal Dolan to keep pure in mind and in body and give good example in his speech, conduct and in his faith. Obtain for him the strength necessary to combat temptations against the virtue of purity, which could lead him away from God. Unite your prayers with those of Mary Immaculate to implore God that Cardinal Dolan be pure in mind and heart and preserve him from those sins which are so displeasing to God.

Novena Prayer: O holy Priest of Ars, St. John Marie Vianney, you loved God and served Him faithfully as His Priest. Now you see God face to face in heaven. You never despaired but persevered in your faith until you died. Remember now the dangers, fears and anxieties that surround Cardinal Dolan and intercede for him in all his needs and troubles especially console him in his most difficult moments, grant him serenity in the midst of crisis, and protect him from evil. O St. John Vianney, I have confidence in your intercession.
Pray for Cardinal Dolan in a special way during this novena.

Amen.

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In recent videos Church Militant TV founder, Michael Voris, has ended his “Vortex” segments by stating that the time has come for an “authentically Catholic uprising.” That Michael has been calling out many of the bishops for less than stellar shepherding in the face of an aggressive secularism and the rise of an even more hostile homosexualist agenda is nothing new. Such is the case with the criticism of Cardinal Dolan over his welcoming attitude of an out and proud homosexual group being allowed to march under their own banner at this St. Patrick’s Day Parade. They will be led by the parade’s Grand Marshall, Timothy Cardinal Dolan, right past St. Patrick’s Cathedral. See Voris’ criticism in the video below:

Michael has crossed a line: A very dangerous line.

Calling for the abdication of Cardinal Dolan and many other non specified bishops, coupled with the stern admonition that the time has come for an, “authentic Catholic uprising,” has the potential to incite passions in those who might not be as stable as one would hope. Consider this line from his commentary:

“Do not think the punishment visited on you will not be of the most severe sort when you die, perhaps even before you die, if you do not change.”

Michael needs to walk this one back: Way, WAY back. At this point Cardinal Dolan would be right to wonder at the intention behind that statement. It sounds like a veiled threat.

It would be helpful if Michael operationally defined what that uprising looks like to him. What is an authentically Catholic uprising in the 21st Century?

Letter writing campaign to the Apostolic Nuncio?

Protests outside of the Chancery or Cathedral?

Withholding offerings?

Novena marathons?

Intercessory prayer chains?

WHAT???

When one poses with a sword, critiques constantly, and starts calling for authentically Catholic uprisings, it is time for some soul-searching. This is most especially true in light of Canon Law:

Can. 1373 A person who publicly incites his or her subjects to hatred or animosity against the Apostolic See or the Ordinary because of some act of ecclesiastical authority or ministry, or who provokes the subjects to disobedience against them, is to be punished by interdict or other just penalties.

Those of us who write or who have other platforms in media have a duty, in love, to offer commentary on our bishops when they cross a line. I have done so only a few times because a bishop’s authority comes down to him from Jesus, through the Apostles. That is a dread reality with which to contend. Authentic Catholic critique must always call the people to pray for the bishop, to mortify themselves if necessary for the bishop’s sake.

Calling the faithful to non-specified acts of uprising for the sake of a bishop’s soul places the souls of those engaging in uprising in danger: hence the reason for Canon 1373. It places Michael’s soul in equal peril.

If Cardinal Dolan (God forbid!) ends up going to hell, he’ll go there with his eyes wide open (as do all who end up in hell). There are more than enough of us who have cried out at key moments in his time here as archbishop. What is needed is prayer for the bishops, and sacrifice. There needs to be less bashing and more catechesis, more instruction in right living.

More humility.

If zeal for the House of the Lord causes the weak in faith who listen to Michael to fall away out of disillusionment, will he not bear responsibility for that? Regarding the hypocrisy of the Pharisees, Jesus told the people to do what they tell them, but don’t do as they do.

I’m not picking that up in Michael’s broadcasts.

It’s Michael’s shop over at Church Militant TV, so unsolicited advice is usually never an occasion of joy. However, he needs to walk this uprising thing back all the way, before something bad happens. In walking it back, Ephesians 4 contains the dynamic tension of Paul calling for purity, begging for unity, and admonishing that our anger should be without sin.

Calling for an unspecified uprising, coupled with calls for bishops’ abdications, all in light if Canon 1373 can rightly be adduced to be an example of righteous anger that has morphed into sin. It foments disrespect and disobedience, and quite possibly even violence among those on the lunatic fringe who gravitate toward watering holes for the dissatisfied.

Michael Voris is a genuinely good man who is bigger and better than that. His programming seems to have taken a dark turn and needs to reflect more of his goodness and far less of his anger, to adhere to Paul in 1 Thes 5:

[12] But we beseech you, brethren, to respect those who labor among you and are over you in the Lord and admonish you,
[13] and to esteem them very highly in love because of their work. Be at peace among yourselves.
[14] And we exhort you, brethren, admonish the idlers, encourage the fainthearted, help the weak, be patient with them all.
[15] See that none of you repays evil for evil, but always seek to do good to one another and to all.
[16] Rejoice always,
[17] pray constantly,
[18] give thanks in all circumstances; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you.
[19] Do not quench the Spirit,
[20] do not despise prophesying,
[21] but test everything; hold fast what is good,
[22] abstain from every form of evil

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Photo Credit: Photo via http://www.newemangelization.com/michael-voris/discussion-with-michael-voris/

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cardinal-timothy-dolan-39143f1da1f175ee

Timothy Cardinal Dolan is my archbishop, an as such he is entitled to my respect and obedience. There have only been a couple of times where I have publicly disagreed with him and written of it. It is not bishop-bashing, but rather the strongly worded disagreement of a faithful and respectful son of the Church. As such, critique must always be balanced by prayer for the Cardinal’s intentions. This novena is that prayer. Please join each night after 8PM EST as we pray for Cardinal Dolan’s intentions. We begin…

St. John Vianney, Lover of Sinners O holy Priest of Ars, you spent many long hours daily in the confessional. People came to you for forgiveness of their sins from far-off places. Although you despised sin, you always received the sinner with much love and forgiveness.

O holy confessor of the Lord, St. John Vianney, awaken in Cardinal Dolan a sense of his sinfulness before the eyes of God. By your Priestly example, grant him a love of the reception of the Sacrament of Penance. Obtain for him the understanding that it is in confessing his sins that God’s mercy is poured out upon him and he draws closer to Christ. Obtain for him a deep hatred of sin and the grace to resist temptation. Teach him the value of frequent confession, where he meets Jesus, our Savior, the source of all mercy and consolation. Contrite and forgiven may all those with whom he comes in contact act with that same mercy. Pray that Cardinal Dolan always love the Sacrament of Penance. Pray that he may call sinners to repentance with his good example and lives in complete service to our Lord.

Novena Prayer: O holy Priest of Ars, St. John Marie Vianney, you loved God and served Him faithfully as His Priest. Now you see God face to face in heaven. You never despaired but persevered in your faith until you died. Remember now the dangers, fears and anxieties that surround Cardinal Dolan and intercede for him in all his needs and troubles especially console him in his most difficult moments, grant him serenity in the midst of crisis, and protect him from evil. O St. John Vianney, I have confidence in your intercession.
Pray for Cardinal Dolan in a special way during this novena.

Amen.

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DolanCOA_New

Timothy Cardinal Dolan is my archbishop, an as such he is entitled to my respect and obedience. There have only been a couple of times where I have publicly disagreed with him and written of it. It is not bishop-bashing, but rather the strongly worded disagreement of a faithful and respectful son of the Church. As such, critique must always be balanced by prayer for the Cardinal’s intentions. This novena is that prayer. Please join each night after 8PM EST as we pray for Cardinal Dolan’s intentions. We begin…

St. John Vianney, Greatly Devoted to Our Blessed Mother O holy Priest of Ars, your life was consecrated to the Blessed Mother. You prayed earnestly to her, entrusting your Priesthood to her care. You begged all the faithful to pray the rosary, the favorite prayer of Mary, our Mother. You summed up the reason for your great love of our Lady by saying: We have only to turn to the Blessed Mother to be heard. Her heart is all love.

O great John Vianney, I ask you with all my heart through the merits of Jesus and the intercession of Mary, the Virgin Mother to make Cardinal Dolan’s life patterned after that of our heavenly Mother, full of love for God and his neighbor. Obtain for him a deeper love for our Lady and a filial confidence in her. She is the person to whom he can turn in times of distress when lonely or upset or in times of temptation. Inspire Cardinal Dolan to consecrate his life to his Mother in heaven. May he know the powerful protection of Mary’s Mantle all the days of his life.

Novena Prayer: O holy Priest of Ars, St. John Marie Vianney, you loved God and served Him faithfully as His Priest. Now you see God face to face in heaven. You never despaired but persevered in your faith until you died. Remember now the dangers, fears and anxieties that surround Cardinal Dolan and intercede for him in all his needs and troubles especially console him in his most difficult moments, grant him serenity in the midst of crisis, and protect him from evil. O St. John Vianney, I have confidence in your intercession.
Pray for Cardinal Dolan in a special way during this novena.

Amen.

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Timothy Dolan

Timothy Cardinal Dolan is my archbishop, an as such he is entitled to my respect and obedience. There have only been a couple of times where I have publicly disagreed with him and written of it. It is not bishop-bashing, but rather the strongly worded disagreement of a faithful and respectful son of the Church. As such, critique must always be balanced by prayer for the Cardinal’s intentions. This novena is that prayer. Please join each night after 8PM EST as we pray for Cardinal Dolan’s intentions. We begin…

St. John Vianney, Adorer of the Blessed Sacrament holy Priest of Ars, you had such an overwhelming love for Christ in the Blessed Sacrament that you prayed for hours in His presence. You said that when our Lord sees them coming eagerly to visit Him in the Blessed Sacrament, He smiles upon them. They come with that simplicity which pleases Him so much.

O Saint of the Eucharist, may your example enkindle in Cardinal Dolan a deeper love for Jesus in the Blessed Sacrament. By your prayers, never let him doubt Christ’s Real Presence, but obtain for him a firm faith rooted in the Eucharist. Help him not to be afraid to defend or preach Christ’s Real Presence in the Blessed Sacrament. Obtain for him the grace to approach our Lord with simplicity of heart as he lays his soul’s innermost thoughts before Jesus’ Sacred Heart. Keep Cardinal Dolan under your continual protection, that he may be supported by your example and assistance and be faithfully devoted to Christ in the Blessed Sacrament. May his life reflect the belief of our Lord’s abiding presence with us. O St. John Vianney, by the power of your intercession, give us Priests devoted to the holy Sacrament of the Altar.

Novena Prayer: O holy Priest of Ars, St. John Marie Vianney, you loved God and served Him faithfully as His Priest. Now you see God face to face in heaven. You never despaired but persevered in your faith until you died. Remember now the dangers, fears and anxieties that surround Cardinal Dolan and intercede for him in all his needs and troubles especially console him in his most difficult moments, grant him serenity in the midst of crisis, and protect him from evil. O St. John Vianney, I have confidence in your intercession.
Pray for Cardinal Dolan in a special way during this novena.

Amen.

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Timothy Cardinal Dolan is my archbishop, an as such he is entitled to my respect and obedience. There have only been a couple of times where I have publicly disagreed with him and written of it. It is not bishop-bashing, but rather the strongly worded disagreement of a faithful and respectful son of the Church. As such, critique must always be balanced by prayer for the Cardinal’s intentions. This novena is that prayer. Please join each night after 8PM EST as we pray for Cardinal Dolan’s intentions. We begin…

St. John Vianney, Full of Zeal for Souls O holy Priest of Ars, you taught men to pray daily: O my God, come to me, so that You may dwell in me and I may dwell in You. Your life was the very living out of this prayer. The divine life of grace abided in you. Your zeal for the salvation of souls was manifested by your total self-surrender to God, which was expressed in your selfless service to others. You gave of yourself unreservedly in the confessional, at the altar, in the classroom, in fact, in every action you performed.

O great St. John Vianney, obtain for Cardinal Dolan the realization that God also dwells in him when he is free of sin. Remind him that the salvation of his soul is the fulfillment of his existence. Awaken in him a sense of self-giving for the salvation of souls. Obtain for Cardinal Dolan, by your intercession, a zeal for souls like your zeal. May he see that God dwells in him and in his fellow men. Obtain for him from our Lord the grace to lead all men to salvation. Let your prayer be his: If you really love God, you will greatly desire to see Him loved by all the world.

Novena Prayer: O holy Priest of Ars, St. John Marie Vianney, you loved God and served Him faithfully as His Priest. Now you see God face to face in heaven. You never despaired but persevered in your faith until you died. Remember now the dangers, fears and anxieties that surround Cardinal Dolan and intercede for him in all his needs and troubles especially console him in his most difficult moments, grant him serenity in the midst of crisis, and protect him from evil. O St. John Vianney, I have confidence in your intercession.
Pray for Cardinal Dolan in a special way during this novena.

Amen.

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Irish_Pirate-1

Last week the St. Patrick’s Day Parade Committee in New York City decided to allow an openly homosexual group to March under their own banner, and Cardinal Dolan (Next year’s Grand Marshall) embraced the decision openly, warmly, and uncritically. These events created an outcry among Catholic writers, myself included. Among the rather strongly worded opinions was that of Msgr. Charles Pope, whose blog post on the Archdiocese of Washington’s website lasted about as long as a pint of Guinness at the parade before it was taken down. Lifesite News has archived it here. The article is as potent as it is brief, and it merits a thoughtful reply.

In abstract, Msgr. Pope points out how events such as the St. Patrick’s Day Parade and the Al Smith Dinner have become shells of their former selves, “farcical,” to use his description.

Now the St. Patrick’s Parade is becoming of parade of disorder, chaos, and fake unity. Let’s be honest: St. Patrick’s Day nationally has become a disgraceful display of drunkenness and foolishness in the middle of Lent that more often embarrasses the memory of Patrick than honors it.

In New York City in particular, the “parade” is devolving into a farcical and hateful ridicule of the faith that St. Patrick preached.

On the Al Smith Dinner,

Decades ago the “Al Smith Dinner” was a time for Republicans and Democrats to bury the hatchet (even if only temporarily) and come together to raise money for the poor and to emphasize what unites us rather than what divides us. But in the old days the death of 50 million infants was not what divided us. We were divided about lesser things such as how much of the budget should go to defense and how much to social spending. Reasonable men might differ over that.

But now we are being asked to raise toasts and to enjoy a night of frivolity with those who think it is acceptable to abort children by the millions each year, with those who think anal sex is to be celebrated as an expression of love and that LGBTQIA… (I=intersexual, A= Asexual) is actually a form of sanity to which we should tip our hat, and with those who stand four-square against us over religious liberty.

His recommendation,

It’s time to cancel the St. Patrick’s Day Parade and the Al Smith Dinner and all the other “Catholic” traditions that have been hijacked by the world. Better for Catholics to enter their churches and get down on their knees on St. Patrick’s Day to pray in reparation for the foolishness, and to pray for this confused world to return to its senses. Let’s do adoration and pray the rosary and the Divine Mercy Chaplet unceasingly for this poor old world.

But don’t go to the parade; stay away from the Al Smith Dinner and all that “old school” stuff that hangs on in a darkened world. And as for St Patrick’s Day, it’s time to stop wearin’ the green and instead take up the purple of Lent and mean it. Enough of the celebration of stupidity, frivolity, and drunkenness that St Paddy’s day has become. We need penance now, not foolishness. We don’t need parades and dinner with people who scoff at our teachings, insist we compromise, use us for publicity, and make money off of us. We’re being played for (and are?) fools.

End the St Patrick’s parade. End the Al Smith Dinner and all other such compromised events. Enough now, back to Church! Wear the purple of Lent and if there is going to be a procession, let it be Eucharistic and penitential for the sins of this age.

It’s hard to argue with a priest of Msgr. Pope’s caliber. In so many ways he’s right. What has gone out from the Church in large measure is holiness. But then, that’s nothing new. Look at Mardi Gras (Fat Tuesday). In medieval Europe, the day before Ash Wednesday was an occasion of binge eating of meats and cheeses, old flour before the severe fast for Lent. All manner of perversion crept into the occasion until we arrived at what exists today. Hardly an evening of examination of conscience. The same for what has happened to All Hallows Eve (Halloween).

There can be no doubt that the Church is besieged on all fronts, and we are witnessing the development of a siege mentality. Abroad we hear of Hindus killing Christians in India, Muslims slaughtering Christians across the Middle East and in Africa, and the threatening of the Pope’s life by these savages.

At home we are witnessing the decay of democracy and the rise of a totalitarian state. The bishops, Cardinal Dolan in particular, have been played for fools by President Obama, and the cardinal speaks of “being disappointed,” by the betrayal of Obama’s promises on contraceptive and abortion mandates. Religious liberties are being eroded by a president who doesn’t see the beheadings of Americans as a declaration of war by an enemy who has promised to fly their flag from the White House; but that same president claims that opponents of his HHS Mandate are waging a war on women. So the Little Sisters of the Poor are at war with us, but ISIS is not.

Gay marriage has taken deep root, while traditional marriage is being opted out of at frightful rates. And now out and proud gays being led along Fifth Avenue in parade by a cardinal who has expressed no opposition whatsoever. The same cardinal welcomed President Obama to the Al Smith Dinner (where his predecessors actually prevented some nasty politicians from attending) with equally warm and uncritical embrace as he has the gay contingent he’ll lead along Fifth Avenue past his own cathedral.

It’s easy to see where Msgr. Pope wants to pull out of the Al Smith Dinner and the St. Patrick’s Day Parade. Respectfully, I must disagree.

This is New York City, and as the world knows we’re fighters here. We don’t lie down and die, and we don’t take no for an answer. Retreat and surrender are not in our DNA. That’s why this is all so visible. But many in the church are in headlong retreat, abandoning the high ground to the adversary. Consider how many dioceses have closed their adoption agencies rather than comply with new laws mandating that they work with gays and lesbians to place children for adoption. Why?

Why close down? Are these children not worth fighting for? Why go down without a fight? Why die with a whimper, when being forcibly shut down by armed police would make a better demonstration of the thuggishness of Obama’s ilk, of the erosion of religious liberty?

Several bishops have spoken of having to shut down other vital operations rather than comply with the HHS Mandate. Again, why?

Retreat emboldens the enemy, and increases the bloodlust with which they pursue us. In the end, the very churches that Msgr. Pope recommends we retreat to will have their tax-exempt status taken away. Then what? What happens in the face of increasingly punitive and crippling taxes by an adversary dedicated to our demise in the public sphere?

No. The answer is no.

The Al Smith Dinner raises a great deal of money for Catholic Charities. We don’t need to invite the most rabidly pro-abortion politicians, but we can use the sharp satire of the evening to skewer them on the important issues. Who suffers if we retreat from this event, whose tone is set by New York’s archbishop? We all do, and the poor most especially.

Similarly, why retreat from the St. Patrick’s Day Parade? The parade was never on par with the sort of Eucharistic procession now advocated by Msgr. Pope. While it certainly honored Ireland’s patron saint it was at least as much a projection of political power by the minority Catholic population in New York and the other cities, a message to the protestant ruling class that here they were not protected by a monarch. Here the Irish had an equal voice, and their growing numbers demanded a different reality than what they suffered in the old country.

New York’s archbishops, from the building of the cathedral post-Civil War, have lived in a stately mansion on Madison Avenue. A faith-filled Irish populace led by our Irish bishops were a force to be reckoned with, and politicians came to that mansion with hat in hand. That is no longer the reality in New York.

Catholics’ faith and fervor have been watered down through a combination of poor catechesis, extinct evangelization, and socioeconomic upward mobility that leads to less reliance on God for survival and celebrates self-initiative. It doesn’t help when our bishops and clergy don’t fight back. Waving the white flag has become habitual and has set a tone for the laity. Would that the USCCB organize boycotts of all the parade sponsors who forced the inclusion of openly gay contingents. Would that our clergy and laity get on board. Would that we have a segment in every bulletin listing the corporate lepers who wage war on us.

Big Gay has seized control of the corporate world, threatening them with crippling PR campaigns if they don’t comply. That’s how Big Gay made an end run around a US Supreme Court ruling protecting the right of the Boy Scouts to determine membership criteria. It’s how they have leveraged the St. Patrick’s Day Parade Committee when Big Gay lost every court challenge against the parade organizers.

Big Gay (who are only 1.6% of the population) does not back down, while for over a decade we have been in headlong retreat. We are more than big enough to win a boycott battle against these same corporations, especially if we partner with like-minded protestants and other religious groups.

No, Msgr. Pope. We can do both. We can yet again become the holy people you call for us to be, AND stand our ground. That’s OUR dinner, not Obama’s. That’s OUR saint, OUR parade, not Big Gay’s. Those are OUR children in orphanages, whose care has been entrusted to US, not Big Gay.

A church that will not fight for orphans will not fight for itself. If it will not fight for itself, if it will not become holy once again, that parade will become our funeral procession.
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Tonight is Night Two of our Novena for Priests right here at Coming Home. We are praying this Novena for Cardinal Dolan’s intentions.

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Timothy Cardinal Dolan is my archbishop, an as such he is entitled to my respect and obedience. There have only been a couple of times where I have publicly disagreed with him and written of it. It is not bishop-bashing, but rather the strongly worded disagreement of a faithful and respectful son of the Church. As such, critique must always be balanced by prayer for the Cardinal’s intentions. This novena is that prayer. Please join each night after 8PM EST as we pray for Cardinal Dolan’s intentions. We begin…

Jesus, Good Shepherd,
You sent us the Holy Spirit to guide Your Church
and lead her faithful to You through the ministry of Your priests.

Through the inspiration of the Holy Spirit, grant to Your priests
wisdom in leading,
faithfulness in teaching,
and holiness in guarding Your sacred Mysteries.

As they cry out with all the faithful, “Abba, Father!”
may Your priests be ever more closely identified with You
in Your divine Sonship
and offer their own lives with You, the one saving Victim.

Make them helpful brothers of one another,
and understanding fathers of all Your people.

On this first day, renew in Your priests deeper faith,
greater trust in You,
childlike reliance on our Mother Mary,
and unwavering fidelity to the Holy Father and his bishops.

Holy Mary, intercede for your priests.
St. Joseph, protect them.
St. Michael, defend them.
St. John Vianney, pray for them.

Amen.

To St. John Vianney

St. John Vianney, Who Accepted the Cross, O holy priest of Ars, as a young seminarian you encountered many obstacles on the road to the Priesthood, but you realized that to suffer was to suffer with Christ on Calvary, and so, if following our Lord meant taking up His cross, you lovingly embraced it. Your motto in life became loving while suffering and suffering in order to love. You did not get discouraged, but your strong faith united you closer to Jesus every day of your life.

Oh great St. John Vianney, you know what is needed for Cardinal Dolan’s salvation —a strong faith able to accept the will of God in all things. To serve Christ, he too must take up his cross and follow Him. By your prayers, obtain for him a heart full of courage and strength. Obtain for Cardinal Dolan that same courage and strength to follow Jesus wholeheartedly even if it means following Him to Calvary. Intercede for him before the Lord that he may do the will of God, obey the commandments, and loyally love the Church, the Bride of Christ.

Novena Prayer: O holy Priest of Ars, St. John Marie Vianney, you loved God and served Him faithfully as His Priest. Now you see God face to face in heaven. You never despaired but persevered in your faith until you died. Remember now the dangers, fears and anxieties that surround Cardinal Dolan and intercede for him in all his needs and troubles especially console him in his most difficult moments, grant him serenity in the midst of crisis, and protect him from evil. O St. John Vianney, I have confidence in your intercession.
Pray for Cardinal Dolan in a special way during this novena.

Amen.

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The decision by the organizers of New York’s St. Patrick’s Day Parade to allow a group of gays from NBC to march openly under their own banner, “OUT@NBCUniversal,” was nothing short of a betrayal of all that was best in the Ancient Order of Hibernians, who have resisted this for more than two decades. That New York’s Timothy Cardinal Dolan welcomed the move, saying the organizers have his, “confidence and support,” is a scandal of epic proportion.

Lest any read these words and interpret them as unwelcoming of LGBT persons in the Church, the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith issued a letter to the world’s bishops in 1986 instructing them on the pastoral care of homosexual persons. Read it here.

Those of us who are horrified at the specter of New York’s Archbishop leading the parade as Grand Marshal, leading a banner announcing a contingent of out and proud gays past our beloved Cathedral (named for St. Patrick), will undoubtedly be called haters. As with all evil, listen to the epithets hurled at the faithful and then you have the identity of those doing the hurling.

Haters.

Catholics who love God, love His Church, love His order of creation are called haters for not supporting those whose lifestyle spits in the face of all that is holy. Is it really hateful to proclaim that children need both a mother and a father living under the same roof, and that this is part of God’s wise design?

Is it hateful to observe that mothers and fathers bring very different gifts and skill sets to the table, and that children need both?

Is it really hateful to suggest that God created a complementarity between the sexes and that humans are completed in their formation within a milieu that nurtures this dynamic complementarity?

Is it really hateful to suggest that the needs of children are the starting point of all consideration and not the needs or predilections of the adults?

If one is a supporter of the gay agenda, then the answer to all of the above is a resounding YES!

But who are the real haters? What do we say of those who say that a mother is an optional accessory in the life of a child, that motherhood itself is entirely unnecessary?

What do we say of those who say that a father is an optional accessory in the life of a child, that fatherhood itself is entirely unnecessary?

What do we say of those who rent women’s bodies as nothing more than incubators (and this includes many heterosexuals), who reduce women to the level of livestock: broodmares and bitches, all because of their own sterility?

What do we say of those who patronize an industry where women are artificially inseminated like so many cattle?

Who is at war with whom here?

What do we say of those people?

Here is what we DON’T say: We don’t cast them out of the Church. We don’t suppose that our sinfulness is more pleasing and acceptable to God than theirs. We don’t arrogantly assume that we will be heading to Paradise and that they will not.

We say to those people: Welcome brother. Welcome sister.

We accept them as individuals, but not as a militant class with an agenda that flies in the face of the Magisterium. No out and proud banners and, in fact, this is how the Ancient Order of Hibernians has dealt with this for 22 years. All are welcome to march, but not under a gay pride banner. They have their own parade for that. And what a parade it is. Filled with naked men in nothing but thongs. Until the parade route was shortened, the Gay Pride parade marched past St. Patrick’s Cathedral where men mooned the cathedral, gave it the finger, and chanted “Shame! Shame! Shame!” at it, and the faithful, by extension.

How the Cardinal can see this as an occasion of unity beggars the imagination. He has alienated his most faithful in exchange for… what?

If the openly gay group were the Courage ministry who struggle to lead chaste lives in accordance with God’s plan as articulated by the Magisterium, that’s a win-win. But that is not what happened here. He has alienated his most faithful by not standing against the AOH members of the committee and their change in direction to welcome the rebellion itself, to LEAD them along Fifth Avenue. Does he suppose that having paraded under their own banner they will abandon their lifestyle and flock to Courage, flock to confession?

This decision comes within the context of not waging an aggressive campaign against gay marriage in New York State, not speaking out against the move to admit openly gay scouts in Boy Scouting, welcoming the most anti-Catholic, anti-life president in history to the Al Smith Dinner, his enthusiastic comments about Michael Sam; not crossing swords with Governor Cuomo when he attempted to legalize abortion in New York for all 9 months, reduce penalties for botched abortions, etc.

Cardinal Dolan could take a page from Cardinal O’Connor. O’Connor didn’t budge an inch against the gates of hell that were turned loose on him by the gay community. He stood them down with the fortitude of a lion. At the same time he volunteered weekly at an AIDS hospice he created and insisted on being called, “Father John,” while dressed simply as a parish priest. He cleaned bedpans and wiped bottoms.

Humility and Fortitude in seamless union.

To be certain, the parade was losing the major corporate sponsorships that make the parade possible. Equally certain is that Cardinal Dolan could have led a boycott against those companies who dared to profane the parade in honor of his diocese’s patron saint. He could have rallied his brother bishops in this and sought the aid of wealthy Catholics to make up the shortfall until these businesses came around. He could have boldly proclaimed the instruction from the CDF linked above. He could have shown disgust and indignation at the allegation that any who are faithful to God’s wise design are haters. He could have stood for the dignity of women and condemned homosexual marriage and the use of women by gay men as broodmares. He could have stood for the dignity of lesbians and condemned artificial insemination as beneath their dignity.

But he didn’t.

There are some Catholic writers and commenters who criticize the actions of the bishops at every turn. That has seldom happened here. But there seems to be a blind spot when it comes to the gay agenda here in New York. It is dangerously seductive to think that one’s adversaries applauding us is somehow a triumph for unity.

It was never what Jesus envisioned for us when He reminded the Apostles that if they find the world hates them, to remember that it hated Him first.

It was never what Jesus envisioned for us when He said, “Woe to you when all men speak well of you.”

It was never what Jesus envisioned for us when He said not to worry about what we will say when put on trial, that the Holy Spirit will give us the words.

It was never what Jesus envisioned for us when He reminded us that He did not come to bring peace, but a sword.

Jesus did all He could to instruct us that there would be great strife and divisions, all in His name. He never, EVER said that there would be unity, though He prayed that all would be one as He and the Father are one. But that oneness does not come at the expense of the truth, otherwise the Cardinal’s pulpit becomes as hollow as the parade that the AOH committee members just defiled.
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Beginning tomorrow night, September 6 at 8 PM , Coming Home will have the Novena for Priests for the intentions of Cardinal Dolan. He needs the prayers, and I need the practice. Let’s all join in.

Update: A draft copy was inadvertently published a few moments ago identifying the AOH as having made the recent decision to allow gays in the parade. This has been corrected to show that it is AOH members on the parade committee. The AOH stepped back from direct involvement a few years ago.

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