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Friday, May 30, 2014

Jesus, Is That You?

In the heat of summer, many Mississippians have described their air conditioners as “heavenly.” But one Jackson County man says his AC actually shows the face of Jesus.
Christopher Goldsberry just bought the unit from a friend, who he describes as a modern day “Sanford and Son” type junk dealer. The friend had just bought a trailer full of stuff, and Goldsberry was looking over the haul when he spotted the face on an old, rusty AC unit.
“When I saw that, I was taken aback. I knew who that was immediately, so I had to take a picture to send to my girlfriend,” said Goldsberry.
Goldsberry said he couldn’t let the peculiar find go, so he bought the unit for $10.
What he finds truly amazing is that the man he bought the unit from did not recognize the face of Jesus in the rust. Goldsberry said he is Catholic, but does not attend church regularly. He is wondering why what is so clear to him is invisible to others.

I, too, am a Catholic, but I attend church regularly. And I don't think it's Jesus. It's Jase Robertson .

Islamic Outreach, Part XLII

From an earlier post on this blog:

Pope Francis spoke to the diplomatic corps and amongst other things, said, "Hence it is important to intensify dialogue among the various religions, and I am thinking particularly of dialogue with Islam."

Meanwhile, the Associated Press reports:

BANGUI, Central African Republic (AP) — Muslim rebels stormed a Catholic church compound in the capital of Central African Republic on Wednesday, killing as many as 30 people in a hail of gunfire and grenades, witnesses said.
The attack on the compound at the church, where thousands of civilians had sought refuge from the violence ravaging Bangui's streets, is the largest blamed on Muslim fighters since their Seleka coalition was ousted from power nearly five months ago.
Wednesday's attack marked a rare attack on a house of worship, as Catholic churches have served as sanctuaries for both Christian and Muslim civilians since the country erupted into sectarian bloodshed in December.

When an Obligation is Not Obligatory

Ascension Thursday has passed, and I went to Mass. Why? It's a Holy Day of Obligation, that's why. But wait, you say...didn't the diocese say it was OK to move the Solemnity of the Ascension to Sunday?

First, of all, the diocese can't move solemnities around. HOWEVER, in 1998 the United States Council of Catholic Bishops approved a proposal that would allow individual ecclesiastical provinces to transfer the feast day. They sent the request to  the Congregation for Divine Worship and Sacraments for final approval.

Our ecclesiastic province is Illinois - the dioceses of Belleville, Springfield, Peoria, Rockford,  Chicago, and Joliet. Where is Acension Thursday still Ascension Thursday? Boston, Hartford, New York, Newark, Philadelphia, and the state of Nebraska.

The thing is that it is not just the moving of the day, but the entire liturgy moves with it. So at St. Joseph's yesterday we did the liturgy for the Holy Day of Obligation - and will probably use the liturgy for the 7th Sunday of Easter on June 1st. If Father Uriel does use the 7th Sunday liturgy, does  that mean those who did not attend Mass on Thursday will not complete their obligation for the Solemnity of the Ascension?

If I Ever Go Looking For My Heart's Desire Again...

... I won't look any further than my own back yard.

What? The Pope was in the Middle East and made an unscheduled stop.

Pope Francis then proceeded to Manger Square, where he was due to celebrate an open-air Mass. His route took him right along the Israeli separation wall, which blocks the old Jerusalem-Hebron road and runs around the Tomb of Rachel – a sacred site for Christians, Jews, and Muslims – annexing it to the Israeli side.
As he drove past the wall in his special open-topped jeep, the Pope made an unscheduled stop. He stepped out of his vehicle and walked over to the wall, near to where someone had sprayed the words “Free Palestine.” In a gesture laden with symbolism, he prayed here in silence for several minutes before pressing his forehead to the wall, crossing himself, and continuing on his way.

What does it mean? The Palestinians claim that the Pope was praying that the Israelis would tear down the wall. Some Israelis said that the Pope insulted them by questioning their need to keep the Palestinians out.

If the Palestinians are correct, maybe the Pope can look for other walled areas to tear down!

Friday, May 23, 2014

P.S. - You're Not a Priest

The awesome Bishop Thomas Paprocki of Springfield has lovingly lowered the boom on Mary Kelderman. What did she do? She decided to become ordained as a "priest".

In an on-line article entitled "Dear Woman Priest, You're Excommunicated... Love, Bishop Paprocki", we get the details:

Bishop Paprocki wrote to her last month asking her to reconsider her plan, but evidently she ignored him and tried to be ordained a priest at a Unitarian church on May 5.

Bishop Paprocki promptly issued a decree of excommunication (and if you’ve never seen one of those before, they look like this).

The bishop also issued this statement to his diocese:

Please be advised that Ms. Mary F. Keldermans of Springfield, Illinois, has attempted to be ordained a priest for “Roman Catholic Womenpriests, Inc.” in a ceremony at the Abraham Lincoln Unitarian Universalist Congregation in Springfield on May 5, 2014. As a result, she has incurred an automatic excommunication reserved to the Apostolic See.
Kick save, and a beauty!

Tuesday, May 20, 2014

We Salute You, Diocese of Detroit!

Cathedral of the Most Blessed Sacrament

From the Diocese website:

 Detroit's Catholic history dates back to 1701. In that year, Antoine de la Mothe Cadillac led a group of French traders and two priests to the banks of the Detroit River. There they founded Ste. Anne, the first Catholic Church in Detroit.

The diocese of Detroit was established by Pope Gregory XVI in 1833, more than 100 years after French settlers built their first church here. At the time, the diocese included all of Michigan, Wisconsin, Minnesota and portions of the Dakotas, east of the Mississippi River.
The diocese predates even the state of Michigan, which did not join the union until 1837. At that time, the boundaries of the diocese were changed to fit into Michigan’s newly-established borders.
Ste. Anne de Detroit Church was the first church built by settlers in 1701. The church served as the diocese's first cathedral from 1833 to 1848.
In 1937, Detroit was elevated to an archdiocese and His Eminence, Edward Mooney was named as our first archbishop. In the following decades the region’s population grew steadily, which required the expansion of many parishes under Mooney.
Today, the Archdiocese of Detroit comprises the six counties of southeast Michigan—Lapeer, Macomb, Monroe, Oakland, St. Clair and Wayne. 

The first bishop of the Diocese of Detroit was also the first German-born Bishop in America -Friedrich Rese. He brought in the Poor Clares, started a convent and a school for girls...and by 1837 had lost his mind and was shipped back to Rome.

The Trouble With Jesuits, Part 19

It's time for commencements, and the Jesuits schools are doing a bang-up job selecting its speakers! Let's take a look:

GEORGETOWN UNIVERSITY: Secretary of the Treasury Jacob Lew. Said Mr. Lew about ObamaCare, "We didn’t expect to get the support of the bishops or all Catholics. We think it is a very good resolution of the problem. It’s gotten the support of a wide range of organizations from Catholic charities and the Catholic Health Association to Planned Parenthood."

BOSTON COLLEGE U. S. Secretary of State John Kerry. Kerry is pro-gay marriage and pro-abortion. He said,

“I am a Catholic.  And I grew up learning how to respect those views.  But I disagree with them, as do many.  I can't legislate or transfer to another American citizen my article of faith.  What is an article of faith for me is not something that I can legislate on somebody who doesn't share that article of faith.  I believe that choice is a woman's choice.  It's between a woman, God and her doctor.  That's why I support that.  I will not allow somebody to come in and change Roe v. Wade.” 

 Santa Clara College: Father Jon Sobrino, S.J., whose work was criticized by the Vatican as containing “erroneous and dangerous propositions” concerning the divinity of Jesus Christ, to deliver the commencement address to the Jesuit School of Theology graduate.

After the Vatican’s notification, Archbishop Fernando Sanez Lacalle, then archbishop of San Salvador, reportedly barred Fr. Sobrino from teaching theology in any Catholic center “until he revises his conclusions on a basic point of our faith: the divinity of Jesus Christ who is truly the Son of God made man.” 

Monday, May 19, 2014

Guitarist Needed!

St. Monica Catholic Church in Santa Monica, CA is looking for a musician!

A guitarist is needed for the 9:30 a.m. Mass. Please contact Jeffrey
Bonilla at or (310) 566-1521 if interested.
Maybe you can get Steve Colbert to do an interpretive dance!

Not the Nuns on the Bus

Father Z. posted a story to cleanse your palette after having to read about the "Nuns on the Bus":

Dominican Sisters of Summit, NJ
Dear Fr. Zuhlsdorf,

Pax Christi!
Thanks for all the hard work and balanced reflection you share on your blog. I don’t know how you do it but I’m glad you do!

Could you do something for us, the nuns OFF the bus?

We have launched a capital campaign to build a much needed new wing onto our monastery. Our monastery looks big but it’s because it is nearly all chapel! Our chapel is nearly the size of our local Catholic Church! We are running out of cell space in the professed dorm and need to take back the cells used for work and sewing rooms. Any “extra” space that would be standard in a monastery was sacrificed in order to make building our monastery possible after the Great Depression and we never really finished it. For years we’ve been making do but as time goes on the needs have changed and we are getting quite cramped!

Read more here. And if you can't contribute, at least buy some soap!

Nuts on a Bus

Did I write "Nuts"? I meant something else. In case you haven't been following the story, The Leadership Council of Women Religious (LCWR) has been criticized and is being further evaluated by the Vatican.

The three points of the investigation are:

1)  Addresses at the LCWR Assemblies.Addresses given during LCWR annual Assemblies manifest problematic statements and serious theological, even doctrinal errors.

2) Policies of Corporate Dissent. The Cardinal spoke of this issue in reference to letters the CDF received from “Leadership Teams” of various Congregations, among them LCWR Officers, protesting the Holy See’s actions regarding the question of women’s ordination and of a correct pastoral approach to ministry to homosexual persons, e.g.letters about New Ways Ministry’s conferences. The terms of the letters suggest that these sisters collectively take a position not in agreement with the Church’s teaching on human sexuality.

3) Radical Feminism. The Cardinal noted a prevalence of certain radical feminist themes incompatible with the Catholic faith in some of the programs and presentations sponsored by the LCWR, including theological interpretations that risk distorting faith in Jesus and his loving Father who sent his Son for the salvation of the world. Moreover, some commentaries on “patriarchy” distort the way in which Jesus has structured sacramental life in the Church; others even undermine the revealed doctrines of the Holy Trinity, the divinity of Christ, and the inspiration of Sacred Scripture. 
Subsequently, in a letter dated February 18, 2009, the CDF confirmed its decision to undertake a doctrinal Assessment of the LCWR and named Most Rev. Leonard Blair, Bishop of Toledo, as the CDF’s Delegate for the Assessmen.

Recently, Cardinal Muller criticized the LCWR. They fought back:

We ask you to personally ntervene with Cardinal Müller and Archbishop Sartain and remove the unjust mandates imposed on LCWR over two years ago.
In addition, a public apology to Dr. Johnson and LCWR leadership would speak volumes about the institutional Church’s intent to truly listen to women and honor their voices.

 Not going to happen.

Thursday, May 15, 2014

Always Listen to Your Father

Or you might as well cut of your ear. From Wikipedia: The father of Vincent van Gogh tried unsuccessfully to get his son to voluntarily take treatment for his disorders in Gheel. See the post below about St. Dymphna to find out why!

Self Portrait with Bandaged Ear, Van Gogh

Choate Medical Center Feast of St. Dymphna, May 15

St. Dymphna's story is a compelling one. She was the daughter of a pagan Irish king and a Christian mother. After her mother died, her father began a search for a woman who looked like his dead wife. He decided on - his daughter, Dymphna. She ran away and hid, but daddy dearest tracked her down in Belgium. When she refused his advances he cut off her head.

Remarkably, (from Wikipedia):

In 1349 a church honoring her was built in Gheel. By 1480, so many pilgrims were coming from all over Europe, seeking treatment for the mentally ill, that the church housing for them was expanded. Soon the sanctuary for the mad was again full to overflowing, and the townspeople began taking them into their own homes. Thus began a tradition for the ongoing care of the mentally ill that has endured for over 700 years and is still studied and envied today. Patients were, and still are, taken into the inhabitants of Gheel's homes. Never called patients, they are called boarders, and are treated as ordinary and useful members of the town.They are treated as members of the host family. They work, most often in menial labor, and in return,they become part of the community.Some stay a few months, some decades, some for their entire lives. At its peak in the 1930s, over 4,000 'boarders' were housed with the town's inhabitants, comprising a legacy of community based care for the mentally ill that that we need to learn from and utilize today.

Notice the green outfit in the drawing:

 Veronica Luekin, a modern American housewife once thought to have experienced apparitions of the Virgin and Saints, claimed to have seen Saint Dymhna appear as a young girl in green and white satin. Many modern holy cards now portray Dymhna in green and white, holding a book and white lilies, even though the visions of Luekin were officially judged by Bishop Mugavero of Brooklyn ( in 1986 ) to have no credibility.


Veronica Lueken was from Bayside, Queens who claimed to see Mary,  St. Therese of Lisieux, St. Joseph., St. Paul, St. Robert Bellarmine, St. John the Evangelist, St. Theresa of Avila, St. Thomas Aquinas, and St. Bernadette. Oh, and Archangels Michael and Gabriel.

In 1986, Bishop Mugavero of Brooklyn investigated and declared the whole thing, and I quote, 'BOoOoOoOogus!"

She also saw St. Dymphna - wearing a green dress. And that became the standard (See drawing at the top).