Monday, 31 March 2014

There can never be any "right" to evil, to sin

We hear much talk about "gay rights", "abortion rights" and so on. How can this be? where did this perverted sense of freedom come from? What will it lead to? Pope John Paul II provides us with some answers from Evangelium vitae. 

"...the moral conscience, both individual and social, is today subjected, also as a result of the penetrating influence of the media, to an extremely serious and mortal danger: that of confusion between good and evil, precisely in relation to the fundamental right to life. A large part of contemporary society looks sadly like that humanity which Paul describes in his Letter to the Romans. It is composed "of men who by their wickedness suppress the truth" (1:18): having denied God and believing that they can build the earthly city without him, "they became futile in their thinking" so that "their senseless minds were darkened" (1:21); "claiming to be wise, they became fools" (1:22), carrying out works deserving of death, and "they not only do them but approve those who practise them" (1:32). When conscience, this bright lamp of the soul (cf. Mt 6:22-23), calls "evil good and good evil" (Is 5:20), it is already on the path to the most alarming corruption and the darkest moral blindness".

Saturday, 29 March 2014

Fiat Lux: And God said: "let there be light, and there was light..."

"For you were heretofore darkness, but now light in the Lord. Walk then as children of light". St. Paul 

Our Blessed Lord is the light of the universe. Light is a godly gift, to be celebrated...not darkness. For it is under darkness that sin is worked. 

North Carolina Catholic school divided over teaching on homosexuality

Anger at Charlotte Catholic school after speaker criticizes homosexuality

Some parents and students at one of North Carolina’s largest Catholic schools are outraged after a Nashville Dominican nun who holds a doctorate in theology criticized homosexuality in a presentation to students, according to the Charlotte Observer.
Apparently the school invited  Sr. Jane Dominic Laurel, a Dominican, to speak at a school assembly. Notably missing from all accounts of this story is what she actually said. Controversialists and polemicists on all sides are busily filling comboxes and sending petitions even as we speak. As tempting as it might be to add to the stream of bile rising over this conflict, I thought it might be interesting to get some idea what was actually said.

Sr. Jane Dominic Laurel OP
According to the website of Aquinas College, the talk was likely Sr. Jane's Masculinity & Femininity, Difference and Gift based on JPII's theology of the body. I cannot find anything on the actual talk but here's a link to the Newman Connection which offers a video course on the theology of the body. You can listen to Sr. Jane Dominic Laurel, OP expound on the theology of the body. So, instead of jumping head first into the fray, sit back and listen to some of the stuff they are fighting about.

Newman Connection: Rich Gift of Love

Addendum: Nearly 1,000 attend Charlotte Catholic meeting on nun’s speech

Good luck getting any concrete information about what was actually said. The meeting was closed to the public and media so any reports are the accounts of attendees. Her assembly talk was a one hour distillation of her usual lecture course so at least some of it was off the cuff and we are relying on second hand accounts from students.
During her speech, Laurel quoted studies that said gays and lesbians are not born with same-sex attractions, and that children in single-parent homes have a greater chance of becoming homosexual, Hains and others said.
The catechism does not attempt to explain the origins of homosexuality. For those of you who are not in possession of a catechism... 
(2357) Homosexuality refers to relations between men or between women who experience an exclusive or predominant sexual attraction toward persons of the same sex. It has taken a great variety of forms through the centuries and in different cultures. Its psychological genesis remains largely unexplained. Basing itself on Sacred Scripture, which presents homosexual acts as acts of grave depravity, tradition has always declared that "homosexual acts are intrinsically disordered." They are contrary to the natural law. They close the sexual act to the gift of life. They do not proceed from a genuine affective and sexual complementarily. Under no circumstances can they be approved.

(2358) The number of men and women who have deep-seated homosexual tendencies is not negligible. They do not choose their homosexual condition; for most of them it is a trial. They must be accepted with respect, compassion, and sensitivity. Every sign of unjust discrimination in their regard should be avoided. These persons are called to fulfill God's will in their lives and, if they are Christians, to unite to the sacrifice of the Lord's Cross the difficulties they may encounter from their condition.

(2359) Homosexual persons are called to chastity. By the virtues of self-mastery that teach them inner freedom, at times by the support of disinterested friendship, by prayer and sacramental grace, they can and should gradually and resolutely approach Christian perfection.
I am quite prepared to defend the Church's teaching about homosexuality as stated here. I am not prepared to defend any particular scientific study without knowing anything about it.

Read more here:

Read more here:
Masculinity & Femininity: Difference and Gift
Masculinity & Femininity: Difference and Gift
Masculinity & Femininity: Difference and Gift
Masculinity & Femininity: Difference and Gift

Wednesday, 26 March 2014

Stop the Insanity!

I am a member of an organization that wantonly and with premeditation engages in activities that would result in being incarcerated for a psychiatric assessment in some parts of this country. I am, of course, talking about the St. Vincent de Paul Society and the activity is giving away money in the form of grocery vouchers to complete strangers. To be fair, I had no idea I was engaging in such a dangerous and subversive activity. That was before I read the following...

Halifax man lands in psychiatric ward after handing out money to strangers

All last week, Halifax was roiled by sightings of a “mystery man” roaming the city and handing out money to strangers.
The sums were large: $100, $50 bills and an assortment of silver coins. The recipients were picked seemingly at random: workers taking a smoke break, passengers on a bus or even a couple sitting on their porch.
Reportedly dressed in patched pants and a wool jacket, the man would tell people he lived in the woods. Sometimes he would point skywards and tell them to thank God, other times he would hint he was the vanguard of a movement to “take back the wealth.”
“I think he did a good job for mankind,” said a clerk at Citadel Coins, one of the Halifax coin shops where the man had come to stock up.
On Monday, Haligonians finally learned the identity of their enigmatic benefactor: Richard Wright, a P.E.I. man who had barely returned home to Charlottetown before he was apprehended by local mental-health authorities.
This sort of behavior constitutes "a substantial disorder of thought, mood, perception, orientation or memory that seriously impairs judgment, behavior, capacity to recognize reality or ability to meet the ordinary demands of life" so I should turn myself in.  Don't wait for the rush... place a few large bills in your parish poor box and then report to your local police station for psychiatric evaluation.

Monday, 24 March 2014

Lenten Reflections for Bloggers

to be read aloud
in all churches and chapels of the Diocese of Portsmouth on
23rd March 2014, the Third Sunday of Lent

Dear Pilgrims,

I need to raise with you a very serious matter, one that it is appropriate for us to consider during this season of Lent. For Lent is a time of Christian warfare, when, accompanying Christ in the desert, we engage in battle against spiritual evils, both within and without. In this season, we seek “to hear the Word of God, to convert, to remember our Baptism, to be reconciled with God and neighbour” and to use the weapons of Christian penance, namely, prayer, self-denial and charity. So let me first wish you the grace of God for a happy Lent! May this Lent be for you a truly favourable time, a springtime of faith, a season of real renewal and rebirth, as we prepare to celebrate Easter.

But let me draw closer to my theme. From the Bible and from the Catechism, we know that there are basically two types of sin: mortal and venial. A sin is ‘missing the mark,’ a failure to follow our in-built drive towards truth, goodness and love,4 an offence against God and neighbour, a thought, word, deed or omission breaking God’s law, damaging self, hurting others and harming our society. A mortal sin, as its name suggests, is lethal; it cuts us off from Christ and His Church, deserving the “eternal death of hell,” whereas a venial sin is a disorder that wounds and impairs our communion with God. To commit a mortal sin, three conditions are necessary.8 We must have full knowledge. We must give complete consent. (Obviously, external pressures, disordered emotions and pathological or addictive patterns of behaviour can diminish the free character of the offence committed.) It must also be a grave matter, something that directly contradicts one of the Ten Commandments.

Let us consider the Eighth Commandment, not least within the context of today’s digital age. The Ten Commandments make explicit the natural law written into every human heart. They tell us to love God (Commandments One to Three) and to love our neighbour (Commandments Four to Ten). The Eighth Commandment says this: “You shall not bear false witness against your neighbour.” In other words, we must exercise discretion, respect others and their privacy, and not engage in slander, gossip and rash judgment. We must avoid calumny, that is, slurring and damaging people, and not spread abroad their sins and failings. How do I use Facebook or Twitter? Am I charitable when blogging? Do I revel in other people’s failings? All this is grave matter. Yet when we think of our news media and TV, in which fallen celebrities are pilloried, reputations shredded and people’s sins exposed, it sometimes seems our popular culture thrives on breaking this Commandment.

The Truth is always graced. When we speak the Truth, our words are always laden with the Holy Spirit, piercing the heart of the listener and inviting them to accept our words and put them into action. “O that today you would listen to his voice; harden not your hearts” exclaimed today’s Psalm. We see this too in the Gospel, that magnificent account of Jesus meeting the Samaritan at the well. Jesus was thirsty from the journey, but what He was really thirsting for was the woman’s faith. In the ensuing dialogue, like a piece of theatre, He encouraged her with the promise of “living water,” the Holy Spirit, “a spring welling up to eternal life.” When Jesus, His Heart full of compassion, gently spoke to her the truth about her past and about Who He was, she was transformed. She ran off to tell the whole town she had found the Messiah.

In Lent, we think about serious things, our choices, our sins, our redemption. In this season, the Church invites us to purify our desires, especially our deepest desire for happiness, for love, for goodness and truth. In making a moral decision, we cannot choose simply on the basis of what gives us pleasure and what causes us pain. We must also take account of our values, of what is right and what is wrong, recognizing that often, to do the right thing involves self-sacrifice. This is why to purify our desires, to be happy in life, to be psychologically healthy, we must pray. We must be people of prayer. We must develop a personal relationship with God. St. Theresa of Lisieux once said: “For me, prayer is a surge of the heart, a simple look towards heaven, a cry of recognition and love.” We must find time and space every day to pray our morning and night prayers, from the heart to the Heart of Jesus. We cannot be saved unless we pray. We must read the Gospels, use a prayer book, visit the Blessed Sacrament, listen in silence, say the Rosary and the Angelus, maybe recite part of the Divine Office, and take part in the greatest prayer of all, the Sacrifice of the Mass.

One last point. This Lent, I urge you to make good use of the Sacrament of Reconciliation. There is no better way to effect Lenten renewal than to meet Jesus One to one, Face to face, in the Sacrament of Penance, burying our sins in Him and rising with Him to new life. This Sacrament is the only means of being forgiven a mortal sin and a huge support in dealing with venial sins and bad habits. The ‘secret’ of a good confession is a careful examination of conscience, which is why reflecting in prayer on the Ten Commandments is a great help. Indeed, on our Lenten journey with Christ in the desert, we will not reach Jerusalem unless we make a good confession, and so I urge you to find time to celebrate this therapeutic Sacrament now, with a priest near you. So, once again, I wish you a Happy Lent! Thank you for listening. May God bless you all. Please pray for me, as I do for you, every day.

In Corde Iesu
+ Philip
Bishop of Portsmouth.

Original pdf file

Saturday, 22 March 2014

A REQUIEM FOR A MODERNIST (or, Kirk and Spock as theologians).... we are within sensor range of Eden...

Captain's log 11.10.1962, Vatican City...

...let's get together and have some fun,
I don't know how to do it, but it's got to be done"

.... modernist theology took care of this lad,
we watch in reverence as Narcissus is turned to a flower.
A flower?

Friday, 21 March 2014

Toronto Rooming House Fire

On Thursday March 20 there was yet another rooming house fire in Toronto. Two people were killed and ten others were treated for smoke inhalation. 

As I sit here waiting for the other shoe to drop I can remember my own experience with rooming houses. When I first arrived in this country it was common to see 'Room for Rent' signs all over some neighborhoods in Toronto. At the time it was quite a respectable way for a family to manage the mortgage on a house. The family would live on the lower floors while the roomers would live upstairs. In my own case, I once had an upstairs room next to a park in St. Anthony's parish. Since the owners and I were of the same national descent, they regarded me as some sort of long lost relative. I remember sipping some aqua vita in the kitchen with the grandfather who spoke not a word of English. It was quite a pleasant experience. 

Today this is no longer the case. Real estate speculators will buy up houses and rent them out to all comers at exorbitant rents. I have seen windowless basements subdivided into rooms at $400 each. I have lived in a rooming house with a crack dealer living upstairs and the days following check day a living hell. What is driving this downward spiral?

The answer ought to be obvious... greed. Back in the 70's it was possible for a family of relatively modest means to afford a home in the city. This is no longer true and the city is becoming increasingly polarized between the haves and the have-nots. Take a look at the following graphs...

The white areas are the middle income neighborhoods, lower income is red and high income is blue. Notice the shrinking middle income areas. Also notice the effects of gentrification. My own neighborhood, the Beach, was distinctly middle income back in the 70's but by 2005 has become solidly high income. The graphs paint a disturbing picture of a city that is heading towards where New York City is... a place for the extremely rich or the extremely poor with nothing in between. 

What does this have to do with a rooming house fire? Simply this... as low income housing passes from families and homeowners to real estate speculators we can expect more and more of this abuse. The other shoe dropping I mentioned earlier is that I expect our local government to enact bylaws which will protect the real estate vultures at the expense of reducing low income housing. Outlawing rooming houses, multiple family dwellings and basement apartments might protect real estate values and prevent block busting but it will do nothing to bring home ownership within reach of middle income earners. It is these middle income earners who will provide decent housing of the kind I lived in back in the 70's. You cannot expect the value of your property to continually escalate without causing serious problems across the board. Do we really want this city to become islands of penthouses and mansions surrounded by tenements and slums?

Three Cities Within Toronto

Austrian Catholic MEP, Ewald Stadler, speaks out on Ukraine, Crimea and US-EU war-mongering

The Austrian Member of European Parliament, Ewald Stadler, (also a practicing "traditionalist" Catholic) has given a wide ranging interview with Sophie Schevernadze of Russia Today television. Herr Stadler makes it clear that American neo-con Russophobes (I would emphasize Othodoxy "phobes") dominant a number of countries in Europe (e.g. Germany), manipulating them to do their "master's'" will etc. 

What is becoming quite evident, is that the "news" being reported in the regular media is full of falsehoods. Watch, listen and learn. 

Also, an earlier interview from late last year with Pat Buchanan is very, very revealing. 

Wednesday, 19 March 2014

The Orthodox Church again denounces the evils of "same-sex marriage"

In an interview on the upcoming Pan-Orthodox Council, set for 2016, Metropolitan Hilarion of Volokolamsk, spoke (amongst other things) candidly about relations with the Catholic Church. Though we disagree with him on his view of the Papacy; his openness, his honesty, his aversion to evasive niceties is refreshing. And his bluntness also extends to the serious moral deviations taken by a number of large protestant sects with regards to sexual morality. Indeed, just the other day, an Anglican clergyman has announced that he intends to "marry" his "partner". 

Question: The previous Council took place before the split into the Orthodox and the Catholic Churches. Will the unification of the Orthodox and the Catholics and the role of the Pope of Rome in the Christian world be discussed by the Council?
-  Attempts to unite the Churches after the schism were made at the 1274 Council of Lyons and the 1438-1445 Council of Ferrara-Florence. But they failed and only aggravated the schism. There is no item on Orthodox-Catholic unification on the Pan-Orthodox Council’s agenda, especially as a considerable part of the Western Christian world broke away from Catholicism with time to form various groups of Protestantism. The problem of Christian unity arises only indirectly in dealing with the dialogue between the Orthodox and the non-Orthodox. Besides, it should be noted that such developments as the blessing of same-sex cohabitations observed now in some Protestant communities not only make it impossible for the Orthodox to maintain dialogue with these communities but also make us doubt their belonging to Christianity.

Tuesday, 18 March 2014

St. John Chrysostom on the evil that is homosexuality: the truth of God rejected; vile affections result

"the primacy of the objective moral order must be regarded as absolute by all"
Inter Mirifica

St. John Chrysostom
In the present period, the corruption of morals has increased, and one of the most serious indications of this corruption is the unbridled exaltation of sex. Moreover, through the means of social communication and through public entertainment this corruption has reached the point of invading the field of education and of infecting the general mentality...

...there are those who have put forward concepts and modes of behavior which are contrary to the true moral exigencies of the human person. Some members of the latter group have even gone so far as to favor a licentious hedonism.

As a result, in the course of a few years, teachings, moral criteria and modes of living hitherto faithfully preserved have been very much unsettled, even among Christians. 

So began the introduction to Persona humana, the 1975 document on sexual morality released by the Congregation of the Doctrine of the Faith. Unfortunately, rather then settle the matter for those who claim to be Christian, this document, as well as the Catechism of the Catholic Church have been unable to change minds and hearts. One could say that things since 1975 have got considerably worse. What else is one to conclude with priests and lay Catholics promoting (for example) the "homosexual agenda" (that is, whilst officially rejecting "gay marriage" are evasive on other aspects of the "gay subculture"?). If a Catholic claims to oppose "gay marriage", but is silent on the intrinsically evil nature of homosexual acts, what is one to conclude? If a Catholic claims that "gays" "love" each other, and that homosexual relationships cannot be compared to other evils, what are we think? If Catholics march in "gay Pride Parades", thereby giving public affirmation, what are we to deduce? Fr. Dariusz Oko, has termed the new proposals that obfuscate the evil of homosexuality as a "homoheresy" or "gender-ideology". The Polish Bishops Conference has dealt with this in a well reasoned Pastoral Letter dated the 2013 Feast of the Holy Family. 

The relics of St. Gregory the Theologian
and St. John Chrysostom
Persona humana distinguishes between those who have undertaken a homosexual lifestyle as a deliberate moral choice, and those who may be suffering from some sort of psychological pathology. Whatever the case,  "no pastoral method can be employed which would give moral justification to these acts on the grounds that they would be consonant with the condition of such people. For according to the objective moral order, homosexual relations are acts which lack an essential and indispensable finality. In Sacred Scripture they are condemned as a serious depravity and even presented as the sad consequence of rejecting God".

St. John Chrysostom, in his series of Homilies on Romans provides us with a detailed theological exposition on why homosexuality is one of the most evil of sins; why it is and forever remains one of the "four sins that cry to heaven for vengeance". Catholics need to see the world from God's perspective, not theirs. Some may, out of a sense of misguided compassion, wish to downplay Church teaching on the intrinsic evil of homosexual acts; some may wish to dismiss, out of hand, those who adhere to the Church as "fanatics"; others, even clergy, may pander in various ways with the "gay liberation" movement - in all of this a betrayal of Christ and His Church can be seen. We can no more pander to other sins, than to the sin of homosexuality. Certainly, culpability of some may be minimal due to a subjective psychological condition, but objectively each and every homosexual act is intrinsically evil. 

The Church, via the Catechism of the Catholic Church states that temptations towards homosexuality constitute a trial; it is for these people that we are called upon to show compassion. "This inclination, which is objectively disordered, constitutes for most of them a trial. They must be accepted with respect, compassion, and sensitivity" (n 2358). The Church does not ask us to respect sinful actions, nor to encourage those who engage in an aggressive public manifestation of homosexuality as a form of "liberation", or would seek to change civil legislation that would promote positive evil. Thus, the Church forbids not only "gay marriage", but also, "civil unions". 

The evil of homosexuality does not grow in a vacuum. The Patriarch of Constantinople demonstrates how it is that "ungodliness" and the rejection of truth that leads to men becoming "fools". And from this great conceit in a false wisdom, and refusal to follow the way of God, humanity would be given up to uncleaness and lusts of the heart.... ultimately these would exchange truth (e.g. marriage being between a man and a woman) for a lie (psuedo "gay marriage") and so on. In all of this, they reject the Creator and serve the creature. They become idolators. Homosexuality is, ultimately, a perverted sexual manifestation of self-idolatry, self-worship. It is, as the saint will say, "satanical", as it is at heart, blasphemy. 

In Book Four of his Homilies, the holy Patriarch provides us with a detailed exposition of the verse 1, 26, 27: 

For this cause God gave them up unto vile affections: for even their women did change the natural use into that which is against nature: and likewise also the men, leaving the natural use of the woman, burned in their lust one towards another.

The saint continues: 

They changed the truth of God for a lie. And with regard to the men again, he shows the same thing by saying, Leaving the natural use of the woman. And in a like way with those, these he also puts out of all means of defending themselves by charging them not only that they had the means of gratification, and left that which they had, and went after another, but that having dishonored that which was natural, they ran after that which was contrary to nature. But that which is contrary to nature has in it an irksomeness and displeasingness, so that they could not fairly allege even pleasure. For genuine pleasure is that which is according to nature. But when God has left one, then all things are turned upside down. And thus not only was their doctrine Satanical, but their life too was diabolical.

And reflect too how significantly he uses his words. For he does not say that they were enamoured of, and lusted after one another, but, they burned in their lust one toward another...

...For there is not, there surely is not, a more grievous evil than this insolent dealing. For if when discoursing about fornication Paul said, that Every sin which a man does is without the body, but he that commits fornication sins against his own body (1 Corinthians 6:18); what shall we say of this madness, which is so much worse than fornication as cannot even be expressed? For I should not only say that you have become a woman, but that you have lost your manhood, and hast neither changed into that nature nor kept that which you had, but you have been a traitor to both of them at once, and deserving both of men and women to be driven out and stoned, as having wronged either sex. And that you may learn what the real force of this is, if any one were to come and assure you that he would make you a dog instead of being a man, would you not flee from him as a plague? But, lo! You have not made yourself a dog out of a man, but an animal more disgraceful than this.

...But nothing can there be more worthless than a man who has pandered himself. For not the soul only, but the body also of one who has been so treated, is disgraced, and deserves to be driven out everywhere. How many hells shall be enough for such? But if you scoff at hearing of hell and believest not that fire, remember Sodom. For we have seen, surely we have seen, even in this present life, a semblance of hell. For since many would utterly disbelieve the things to come after the resurrection, hearing now of an unquenchable fire, God brings them to a right mind by things present. For such is the burning of Sodom, and that conflagration! And they know it well that have been at the place, and have seen with their eyes that scourge divinely sent, and the effect of the lightnings from above. (Jude 7) 

Consider how great is that sin, to have forced hell to appear even before its time! ...

And what is there more detestable than a man who has pandered himself, or what more execrable? Oh, what madness! Oh, what distraction! Whence came this lust lewdly revelling and making man's nature all that enemies could? 

Links: The website of the Patriarchate of Constantinople

Sunday, 16 March 2014

Fr. Paul Nicholson on St. Joseph and Family Life

Fr. Paul Nicholson presents an excellent talk on St. Joseph and family life. With his Feast day this coming Wednesday, and being the Patron of Canada, we should redouble our devotion to the Protector of the Church.

Friday, 14 March 2014

Why they hate Vladimir Putin

OECTA's evil decision to march in the world "Gay Pride" Parade is a direct attack on the Church and Cardinal Collins

"Therefore it is essential to educate in and about the truth: ... the truth about mankind, about creation, about institutions, and so on. Alongside education in the righteousness of the heart and mind, the young also need, now more than ever, to be educated in the meaning of effort and perseverance in the face of difficulty. They need to recognise that all human action must be responsible and coherent with the desire for the infinite, and that this action should form a part of their growth, with a view to developing a humanity that is increasingly fraternal and free from the temptations of individualism and materialism". (Pope Benedict XVI)

The strident, militantly secularist Ontario English Catholic Teachers Association (OECTA) has recently decided to participate in the upcoming "world" so-called "Gay Pride Parade" to be staged - sadly - here, in Toronto, this summer. This wicked event will defile our city with public displays of not only nudity, but depraved and unnatural sexual acts. Catholics should remember that what is contrary to truth, justice has no right for propagation, no right for public display. There is no such thing as "gay" rights; no one has a right to commit sin. 

It is bad enough that the Police (refusing to enforce the law on public nudity) and leading politicians will be participating; but for a group of teachers from the Catholic school system, established constitutionally to protect education rights for English-speaking Catholics? This decision by those who control OECTA is a complete betrayal. It is also - and this must never be forgotten - a betrayal of young people who may be struggling with temptations towards same-sex attraction, and need love and guidance. These young people will now be officially encouraged to succumb to the "gay" lifestyle, and abandon Christ and His Church. 

It would be good for Catholics to re-read Cardinal Collin's on the Ontario Government's attempt to force Catholic schools to abandon, what the Cardinal calls: "a particular approach to life which is largely in harmony with their family and faith convictions". 

Pope Benedict XVI and the Cardinal
How much more the Cardinal's words apply to the decision by OECTA's controllers to participate in celebrating publicly one of the four sins that cries to heaven for vengeance.

Applying the Cardinal's words to OECTA shows the depth of their treachery. Those who claim to be Catholic within the OECTA administration have entered upon a path of schism and heresy.

The Cardinal points out that the Catholic schools must uphold Catholic teachings. OECTA has decided that it does not want to. This monstrous decision to march is a decision truly worthy of Judas. It is time Catholic teachers stopped sitting on their hands; stood up, attended the OECTA meetings and drove these heretics out!

Some background on OECTA dissent: 

2006 "Catholic Teachers" Conference with Gregory Baum

So that there can be no confusion as to what OECTA officially stands for, I will quote directly from the document "Equity Report -Final" on two profoundly important issues relating to the Catholic Faith. One that attacks the sacred priesthood, hence the sacramental economy; the other, the overthrowing of sexual ethics. The 1997 document received recent impetus from OECTA in a TSU Committee Annual Report (2008) on strategies for continued implementation.

1. OECTA supports the "ordination" of women to the sacramental priesthood. This being contrary to the Magisterium.

"The role of the Catholic Church's teaching on the denial of priestly ordination to women which continues to reinforce sexist divisions in the Catholic Church, and its continued insistence on exclusively male language for God, acts as a significant brake on efforts to combat sexism in the Catholic school. Teachers and students, already socialised into sexism within society, operate within the environment of the Catholic school where religion reinforces rather than challenges systemic and individual sexism. The religious teaching and exercises of the Catholic school are held to be the highest expression of its raison d'etre. How can the school curriculum (seven sacraments for men, six for women), language (God is only and at all times addressed as Father), imagery (statues and pictures of God as male) and the central ritual of Eucharist (led only by a male priest) not promote, at the very centre of its most cherished values, that God is male and therefore male is God? ...As educated Catholic laity, teachers must take the risk to be proactive in using inclusive language and in exposing and challenging the sexism and stereotyping that emanate from Church sources".

2. OECTA supports active homosexual relationships. This being contrary to the Magisterium.

"All homosexual sex is categorized as sinful by the Catholic Church. This has a number of ramifications in the lives of Catholic gays and lesbians. It means that life-long chastity is the only way of life imposed on gay or lesbian Catholics, unlike heterosexuals, who always have the option of marriage. This in and of itself places an enormous burden on gay and lesbian youth and adults. In a heterosexist society, adjustment to a gay or lesbian identity presents major hurdles. For the Catholic, the issue of remaining eternally celibate presents an additional burden...
...Gay and lesbian teachers want to present a positive role model of adjustment and pride in their sexual orientation for the sake of both gay and straight students. But because official spokespersons for the Catholic Church constantly thrust the question of illicit lifestyle into any discussion of sexual orientation, coming out as a gay or lesbian teacher or student in a Catholic school is fraught with difficulties unimagined by heterosexual peers". 
"Report on Equity 1997"; Employment Equity Task Force/Affirmative Action committee, Toronto Secondary Unit, OECTA            
An address by Pope Benedict XVI on Catholic Education may be read here. 

All referenced OECTA documentation can be downloaded here.

A very interesting essay on Gregory Baum by Msgr. Fenton can be read here.

Thursday, 13 March 2014

Is the evil specter of Stalin still haunting Russia and the Crimea?

Joseph Stalin, that tyrannical murderer who made Adolph Hitler look like a choirboy, still has his apologists and admirers. It is deeply disturbing to see images of this fiend being carried about in the Crimea; to see the loathsome red flag of communism being carried and held aloft. Let me make my position clear: I oppose the hard communism of Lenin-Stalin, as well as the "soft, white gloves" variety as practiced by the increasingly secular and anti-Christian EU; Canada and the USA. 

Russian Television has made much recently of "fascists" in Kiev. Yes, it is deeply disturbing to see admirers of Bandera; but it is even more so to see admirers of Stalin and Lenin. If we are going to denounce totalitarian killers: they all must be denounced. Sadly, there are those in Russia, the Ukraine and White Russia who refuse to come to grips with the monster of iniquity that Stalin and his gang were. 

Just one example of Stalin's brutality was the Katyn Massacres. 

From PBS: 

Partners in crime
"On March 5, 1940, Stalin and other high-ranking Politburo members signed a document condemning nearly 22,000 imprisoned Poles to death. Those being held at three camps, Ostashkov, Starobelsk, and Kozelsk (a camp near Smolensk), mostly Polish officers and other members of the Polish elite, were transferred and disappeared during the months of April and May 1940. These people, who Stalin had decided were “hardened and uncompromising enemies of Soviet authority,” were brutally murdered by the NKVD under Stalin’s direct authority".

Communists marching in the Crimea

Soviet veteran and others holding an image of their hero

A Crimean holding aloft a communist flag, Lenin "icon" before a statue of the odious Lenin

Communists carrying Ukrainian and Soviet flags in the Crimea

Wednesday, 12 March 2014

A Lenten Meditation by Susan Fox: "The Beloved"

I am honoured to recommend for your prayerful reading, a poetical meditation by our dear friend, Susan Fox: 


Written in the Alps, 1973, Grenoble, France

by Susan Fox

He comes with leaves,
drops brown and crackling
onto pavement,
shrieks cold and sharp
through the city;
He rises and dies.

Have you heard the
rustling from the mountains?
Can you see His
autumn red slashed across the hills?
Rain sweet and fresh, He tastes of morning....

The complete poem may be read here.  

Saturday, 8 March 2014

The Catholic Church absolutely forbids as evil, civil recognition of so-called same-sex unions

There are absolutely no grounds for considering homosexual unions to be in any way similar or even remotely analogous to God's plan for marriage and family. Marriage is holy, while homosexual acts go against the natural moral law. Homosexual acts “close the sexual act to the gift of life. They do not proceed from a genuine affective and sexual complementarity. Under no circumstances can they be approved”.

Sacred Scripture condemns homosexual acts “as a serious depravity... (cf. Rom 1:24-27; 1 Cor 6:10; 1 Tim 1:10). This judgment of Scripture does not of course permit us to conclude that all those who suffer from this anomaly are personally responsible for it, but it does attest to the fact that homosexual acts are intrinsically disordered”.(5) This same moral judgment is found in many Christian writers of the first centuries and is unanimously accepted by Catholic Tradition.
Those who would move from tolerance to the legitimization of specific rights for cohabiting homosexual persons need to be reminded that the approval or legalization of evil is something far different from the toleration of evil.
CONGREGATION FOR THE DOCTRINE OF THE FAITH: Considerations regarding proposals to give legal recognition to unions between homosexual persons

With the pretext of regulating one context of social and juridical cohabitation, attempts are made to justify the institutional recognition of de facto unions.  In this way, de facto unions would turn into an institution, and their rights and duties would be sanctioned by law to the detriment of the family based on marriage. The de facto unions would be put on a juridical level similar to marriage; moreover, this kind of cohabitation would be publicly qualified as a “good” by elevating it to a condition similar to, or equivalent to marriage, to the detriment of truth and justice.  In this way, a very strong contribution would be made toward the breakdown of the natural institution of marriage which is absolutely vital, basic and necessary for the whole social body...
 If the family based on marriage and de facto unions are neither similar nor equivalent in their duties, functions and services in society, then they cannot be similar or equivalent in their juridical status...
Marriage and the family are of public interest; they are the fundamental nucleus of society and the State and should be recognized and protected as such.  Two or more persons may decide to live together, with or without a sexual dimension but this cohabitation is not for that reason of public interest. The public authorities can not get involved in this private choice.  De facto unions are the result of private behavior and should remain on the private level. 
Pontifical Council for the Family: Family, marriage and "de facto" unions. 

Wednesday, 5 March 2014

Ronald Reagan was pro-Russian, pro-Orthodox (a reminder to neo-con interventionist war-mongers)


          I am honored to have this opportunity to extend warm greetings to the Council of Bishops of the Russian Orthodox Church Abroad as you gather in Montreal.
          You deserve the highest commendation for your efforts in support of the return of religious and civil freedom to the Russian people.  Your work furthers the interests of all members of the human family, because it is inspired by faith in the Creator and by the desire for liberty that burns in the hearts of every man, woman, and child on earth.
          The values you hold aid in the preservation of your own great heritage and in the strengthening of religious principles within each nation where your Church is located.  In safeguarding the wondrous beauty and timeless grandeur of the ancient faith and culture of your motherland, you provide all mankind with the hope that this magnificent institution will one day be restored to its former place in the life of the Russian nation and people.
          You have my best wishes for your meeting and continued success in all your efforts.

                                                                   Ronald Reagan



Deeply-respected Mr. President!

          The bishops of the Russian Orthodox Church Abroad, who have come from every continent to assemble in council, were deeply touched by your words of greeting and ask you to accept the expression of their gratitude.
          While we are honored by the attention you have shown us, we value still more your grasp of the situation of the Russian Orthodox Church and the Russian people who have suffered since 1917 under the yoke of atheistic communism.  Millions and millions of martyred clergy and faithful from different social strata appeal to our Lord, but we rarely see such profound understanding on the part of government authorities as we have encountered from you.
          In thanking you with all our heart, we pray that the Lord will preserve you in good health and strengthen you in your endeavors which have such importance for the United States and the whole world.  May the Lord confer His blessing upon you in that position in which He placed you in order to fulfill His divine will.

                                                Metropolitan Philaret
                                                President of the Sobor of Bishops
                                                of the Russian Orthodox Church Abroad

                                                          Bishop Gregory,
                                                          Secretary, Sobor of Bishops

The Bandera genocide against Polish women and children in Wolhynia 1943

Stepan Bandera, the "hero" of so-called Ukrainian nationalists, was a sadistic and bestial murderer of well over one hundred thousand Poles. His military Nazi units also were responsible for exterminating at least 9000 Jews in 1941.  His fanaticism also led his debased followers to even murder Ukrainians who did not approve of his vile activities. 

This loathsome creature is presently receiving a posthumous hero's welcome in Kiev. American Senator, John McCain, who distinguishes himself in outrageous foreign buffoonery, outdid himself this past January, by sharing the stage in Kiev with "Banderowscy". 

The Ukraine will never heal unless this sad nation comes to terms with her dark past. All nations have made mistakes, some disastrous: it is the mark of a mature people to admit to mistakes, which may include evil crimes. 

The following video is a heart-rending memorial to Polish women and children murdered by Bandera's OUN-UPA paramilitary. 

May God grant the Ukrainian nation peace and reconciliation.