Jul 31, 2007

U.S. priests flocking to learn Tridentine Mass!

The photo above is of a seminary chapel of the Institute of Christ the King Sovereign Priest, one of the orders that is helping U.S. priests learn to celebrate the Tridentine Mass.

Yesterday's (July 30) Washington Times reported (click on this post's title) that U.S. priests are flocking to learn the ancient but ever-new rite.

This excerpt from the article tells the story:

"Monsignor Michael Schmitz, vicar-general of the Florence, Italy-based Institute of Christ the King, said he has received hundreds of calls from interested clergy.

"'This is a nationwide phenomenon,' he said. 'Many more parish priests and younger priests are interested in learning to celebrate the Latin Mass.

"'Whenever the Latin rite is celebrated, you get many young people,' he added. 'They are looking for something that speaks to the soul, and the beauty of the liturgy is awe-inspiring. The heartfelt presence of God really affects them.'"

This excerpt also tells the story:

"The Elmhurst, Pa.-based Priestly Fraternity of St. Peter trained 50 priests on performing the rite this summer at its Our Lady of Guadalupe seminary in Denton, Neb.

"Its September session is already full and its Elmhurst bookstore got a 'big upsurge' in demand for priestly training materials within two days of the announcement, said the Rev. Carl Gismondi, a Fraternity priest studying theology at the Dominican House in the District."

There is lots more good news in the news article, so be sure to read all of it.

Wonder how many of our priests in the Archdiocese of Los Angeles are signing up? Sure hope it's many of them.

Jul 30, 2007

She says Cardinal Mahony said, "The Catholic Church is not the only church"

Today's (July 30) Los Angeles Times carries an article (click on this post's title) about Cardinal Roger Mahony's meetings with clergy sex abuse victims.

Here is an excerpt:

"Two sisters, Elizabeth, 56, and Mary, 51, arrived full of anger for their February meeting. But they said they felt a real connection with Mahony as he looked through old photographs that showed them, as children, with their abuser, Brother Joe Stadtfeld. In one, the monk was holding Elizabeth, then in grade school, on his lap, giving her a kiss.

"They also shared with the cardinal several letters from Stadtfeld, who died in 1995, asking for their forgiveness. 'No longer did it feel like we were alleged victims,' Elizabeth said of the meeting. 'We felt that [Mahony] believed, that he believed that this happened.'

"Mary also told Mahony that she hoped to return to some form of spirituality but that because of the abuse, she could no longer believe in the Catholic [C]hurch.

"The response from the leader of L.A.'s Catholics surprised her. 'He said to me, "The Catholic [C]hurch is not the only church,"' Mary said."

If this sad lady's recollection of their conversation in February is accurate, don't you think our Prince of the Church could have said something better to her, something that would help her return to the Sacraments and to real spiritual help and solace?

Perhaps the Cardinal or his spokesman Tod Tamberg could respond publicly to the L.A. Times article in order to clear things up about what His Eminence said, or meant.

Jul 29, 2007

A New York Times hit piece on the Tridentine Mass

Someone at the New York Times does not like the Tridentine Mass.

In today's (July 29) edition, New York Times editorial board member Lawrence Downes attacks the Tridentine Mass in what has to be a patently phony, set-up op-ed piece (click on this post's title).

He says he "drove through a strange liturgical neighborhood" last Sunday by going to a Low Mass at Chicago's wonderful -- Downes does not think it that -- St. John Cantius Parish, where in the past several years the pastor has turned a parish ready to close into a thriving one by restoring the sacred there: Bringing back the Tridentine Mass, and reviving Gregorian Chant, Latin and Greek classes and true Catholic culture.

Of the Tridentine Mass, Downes says he has never "seen, heard or smelled one." Well, thanks to that flirtation with blasphemy and to the rest of his op-ed piece, we can smell him out, and the odor is sulphur.

Downes does not tell us -- although he does mention "a clutch [emphasis added] of seminarians in the front row" -- but thanks to the Catholic revival there, vocations to the priesthood have been flourishing at St. John Cantius Parish http://www.cantius.org/

Downes does admit the parish is thriving. But he says the Tridentine Mass he attended made him "irate" because, he claims, it "reassert[s] the unchallenged authority of ordained men" and hands Mass "entirely back to Father."

Downes shows his liberal elitism and snobbery by actually complaining about the Tridentine Mass attracting "Smart, devout, ambitious Catholics — ecclesial young Republicans, home-schoolers, seminarians and other shock troops of the [F]aith..."

He calls the Tridentine Mass "silent, submissive worship" and the beautiful sanctuary "oddly barren."

Downes makes other mistakes, saying "the Latin rite...took hold in the 16th century" and "there was nothing to hear" -- he claims he, and by extension everyone, could not hear the celebrant praying the Mass.

Part of the phony, set-up angle to all this is that Downes says he phoned -- of all 300 million+ people in the United States -- Eugene Kennedy, who just happens to be an ultra-liberal ex-priest.

Kennedy, he says, "spoke fondly of" the Tridentine Mass but said he wouldn't want it back.

Downes paraphrases Kennedy as saying, "Priests aren’t ready; it takes years to learn. And forget about the laity..."

What a ludicrously false statement, that the Tridentine Mass takes years to learn!

Downes does not explain why the laity love the Tridentine Mass and flock to it if there is no place for them in it. Of course the laity participate!

Downes also does not explain why MILLIONS of Catholics have stopped attending the New Mass and have LEFT THE FAITH in the almost 40 years since its introduction.

Do flock to the web site of St. John Cantius Parish and see all that a Catholic parish can be. May every parish become like this one. Amen!

What about exorcisms for molesters?

This is a serious post with some serious questions.

Do you suppose that any clergy sex molesters in Los Angeles and elsewhere have needed, or still need, exorcism? Have you seen any articles by exorcists or bishops about this?

You would think a molester might be under demonic influence to the extent of being at least obsessed.

Have any exorcisms ever been carried out on clergy sex molesters? Have any exorcisms been suggested or recommended for them? Have any molesters ever sought exorcism?

I am not at all saying that exorcism would cure a molester. But maybe it could have some beneficial spiritual influence and lead to ultimate repentance.

If any exorcist, padre or obispo has any thoughts on this, I would love to hear from him. Thank you in advance.

Op-ed piece: Cardinal Mahony and bishops should step down

You have to register to see the bulk of it, so I haven't done that, but ole Q has found out that an opinion piece in today's (July 29) Santa Barbara News-Press, by law professor Stanislaus Pulle, calls for Cardinal Roger Mahony and his bishops and top staffers to resign right away.

The online edition of the newspaper supplies only this paragraph from the op-ed piece:

"It's time now that the resignation of Cardinal Bernard Law of Boston be replicated in the archdiocese of Los Angeles, if a meaningful healing and unifying process is to emerge from the crises of these past seven years. Cardinal Roger Mahony and all those who aided and assisted him, including associate bishops, must submit their resignations without further delay if the [C]hurch is to regain its spiritual and temporal preeminence in the nation's largest Catholic congregation encompassing Los Angeles..."

Jul 28, 2007

Journalist Chris Weinkopf's beautiful tribute to Catholic priests

In mid-July, just after the $660 million settlement announcement, Chris Weinkopf of the Los Angeles Daily News wrote "A Word on Priests," a beautiful, heartfelt tribute to the Catholic priesthood (click on this post's title, and when you get to the page, scroll about halfway down) .

Mr. Weinkopf wrote this:

"And yet God's mercy always remains. Peter was also one of Christ's handpicked, the rock upon whom His Church would be built. Peter would deny Christ three times. Yet despite the evil that men -- even priests and bishops -- can do, 'the gates of the netherworld shall not prevail against it.' As Peter shows, there is always God's mercy, always His healing...

"As for the rest of us, with so many bad priests garnering so much attention at the moment, I'd like to say a special thanks to the many, many, good priests who selflessly give of themselves to serve others. The ones who spent their weekends bringing Holy Communion to the sick and dying in hospitals, or sitting in hot confessionals ministering to their flocks; the ones who bring credit to the Church and to God.

"I had the honor of spending the weekend with one such priest, Fr. Vincent Serpa of Catholic Answers, who was leading a retreat in my town. A Dominican who loves with all his heart and lives to serve. The Church and the world could use more like him.

"Let's not forget these good priests, not just for the work they do, but also for the critical role they must play in the healing."

Kudos to you, Mr. Chris Weinkopf, for this beautiful post of yours -- and God bless you and yours.

The Cathedral as "a model Church for all Parish Churches"

There it is, in black and white, in the second paragraph on the first page of the web site of the Cathedral of Our Lady of the Angels (click on this post's title):

"The Cathedral serves as a 'model Church for all Parish Churches' in the style and content of its liturgical celebrations."

Hmmm. And hmmm.

By the way, think we'll see Tridentine Masses in the Cathedral very soon? Are parishioners of the Cathedral parish petitioning Cardinal Mahony for them? Let's hope and pray they do.

Jul 27, 2007

Catholics want to intervene in San Diego diocese case

An Associated Press article (click on this post's title) says Parishioners for Churches and Schools, a group headed by Patrick Hazel, filed a motion yesterday to be allowed to intervene in the Diocese of San Diego's bankruptcy proceedings.

The group "asked a federal bankruptcy judge Thursday to prevent churches, schools and charitable missions from being closed or sold to settle sex-abuse allegations against the San Diego diocese."

Mr. Hazel said:

"We believe sincerely and deeply in our hearts, as Catholics, that if a settlement reduced the ability of the [C]hurch to educate its children or to do its charitable work, that would be unjust. The parishioners who provided donations had no knowledge of the abuse, didn't condone it, didn't authorize it. They are innocent."

A hearing in the diocese's case in federal bankruptcy court is set for Sept. 6.

Archdiocesan officials might have to testify

Yesterday's (July 26) issue of the Los Angeles Times had a story (sorry, I do not have the link) in the California section, "Prosecutor to query archdiocese officials in trial of ex-priest."

The case is that of George Miller, 69, who was charged this week with molesting a boy from Pacoima from 1988 to 1991. The six counts against him could get him 18 years in the pen.

The "several" Archdiocesan officials who might have to testify are not likely to include Cardinal Roger Mahony, said a deputy district attorney.

Jul 26, 2007

Prayer for the Return of the Tridentine Latin Mass

The following holy prayer is from www.unavoce.org

Grant, we pray, Almighty God,
That through the intercession of St. Joseph,
The peace, order and beauty of the Tridentine Latin Mass
May be restored to our churches. Amen.

Resources for obtaining the Tridentine Mass

If you want to find resources about the Tridentine Mass (illustrated above), click on this post's title to go to the website of Una Voce (which means, "one voice").

There you will find, under "resources and support," the "Lumen Gentleman" page where you can add your name to those of a bunch of lovers of the Tridentine Mass.

In numbers there is strength, after all, and it might well be that everyone in each parish will need all the allies they can get in order to obtain the Tridentine Mass the Pope has promised us.

Father Zuhlsdorf quotes Bishop Steib of Memphis as writing that "substantial numbers" of the faithful are required before any request for the Tridentine Mass will be honored.

Earth to Bishop, Earth to Bishop: The Pope never said that!!!

Father Z. also quotes Bishop Steib as writing that his diocese is already doing what the Pope wants -- by allowing the Tridentine Mass in just two places!

As ole Q has said, and taken heat for, the roadblocks are on the way here in the USA.

Jul 25, 2007

"Liturgy in Your Language"

All the phony claims about people not being able to understand the Tridentine Latin Mass are just that: Phony. Missals take care of any problem, and they help to make Latin easy to understand.

But speaking of not being able to understand the Mass: The Catholic liberals who schedule bilingual Masses and multicultural events such as the Rosary Bowl do not mind it at all that many or most in the congregation cannot understand all the languages being used.

Look at the many languages in which Holy Mass is said in our Archdiocese of Los Angeles (click on this post's title). Do the speakers of the many languages understand each other's Masses? Are translations provided for everybody?

Nope. And nope.

So why are the liberals making a fuss about Latin? Simple: They disapprove of some or much of the theology that the Tridentine Mass embodies and expresses, and they do not want us exposed to it.

Jul 24, 2007

The adultery alcalde won't shut up

Did you hear our Los Angeles mayor/alcalde Antonio Villaraigosa on the radio yesterday? He was proudly proclaiming that, yes, he is in a "relationship" with that (female) reporter and he is not going to stop.

What a jerk. Oops, I'd better not say that.

We have to be careful how we treat this situation, because we don't want to offend the adultery community.

And we mustn't be intolerant and judgmental, not to mention self-righteous and holier-than-thou.

After all, adulterers are just like the rest of us.

And we don't want to commit adulterophobia, do we?

Jul 23, 2007

This letter should make liberals scream

A letter to the editor in last Friday's L.A. Times (sorry, I do not have the link) should make liberals scream.

In it, Mr. William S. Hulsy of Santa Ana writes:

"The lesson to take away from the sexual abuse scandals is a return to discipline exemplified in the Latin Mass....It has been said that the Latin Mass reflects 'a church of visible discipline and hierarchical structure, the ancient discipline of the priesthood, the moral authority of bishops and the pope, a way of looking at the human relationship to God'....we need to return to the better ways of the past."

In a sentence not quoted here, Mr. Hulsy thinks there were no sex abuse scandals in the past. As we know, there were some -- but not anything close to the situation of recent decades.

Say what you will, but the Church was better off when we had the Latin Mass , and the liturgy and the sensibilities of the faithful were not the playthings of liberal clergy.

Maybe, in the wake of the Pope's directive, more priests will celebrate the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass more reverently and according to the rubrics, in the New Rite as well as the Tridentine.

Jul 22, 2007

Who has damaged Catholic churches the most -- criminals, bigots, the insane, or liberal bishops?

After commenter Tony recently asked about the hours the Cathedral downtown is open, and I supplied them (see comments under "Two bombshells from Cardinal Levada"), a commenter Anonymous remarked that, like the Cathedral, many Catholic churches around the USA cannot remain open 24/7 because of the threats of crime, vandalism, etc.

That prompted me to make the following comment to Anonymous, and I think it is worth displaying here:

"Another thought: In recent years and decades, by far the greatest damage to Catholic churches has come not from criminals, bigots and the insane but from liberal Catholic bishops who bulldoze, sell off or wreckovate them."

This is an absolutely true, indisputable statement. The greatest physical damage to our beautiful Catholic churches is perpetrated by bishops, not by criminals, the insane or bigots.

We need no more liberal bishops!

The L.A. Times

Today's Los Angeles Times carries an article (click on this post's title), "The Teflon Cardinal," by far-left author David Rieff, only son of the late far-left author Susan Sontag.

Rieff predicts the Cardinal will survive the molest/cover-up/payout scandal because, he estimates, about 70% of the more than 4 million Catholics in the Archdiocese of Los Angeles are Latino/Hispanic and, he again estimates, most of them are loyal to the Cardinal because he has a long track record of being pro-"immigrant" and pro-labor.

Rieff says that when he researched and wrote a previous article about L.A., not one Latino/Hispanic parishioner brought up the scandals to him.

I think Rieff somewhat overestimates the percentage of Hispanic/Latino Catholics who remain loyal to Cardinal Mahony.

Incidentally, Rieff makes a mistake by calling Cardinal Mahony a descendant of Irish immigrants. The Cardinal's dad was adopted by a family named Mahony.

Jul 21, 2007

Letter-writers defend Fighting Father Malloy

If you want to see three GREAT Catholic letters to the editor, see today's (July 21) San Francisco Chronicle (click on this post's title).

In one letter, Gibbons J. Cooney of San Francisco, who drops in here to comment sometimes, defends Father John Malloy, S.D.B., from previous letter-writers who attacked him.

Mr. Cooney writes: "Father John is hated (and loved) because he is a Catholic priest who teaches Catholic doctrine -- one of which is the sinfulness of homosexual behavior."

In the next letter, Dolores Meehan of San Francisco, who with Eva Muntean co-founded the pro-life West Coast Walk for Life, writes:

"Indeed, this is why I look to Father John Malloy and priests like him who have the courage to risk our anger and disfavor by not only calling us to righteousness, but committing their life and ministry to helping us find the way.

"A good surgeon does not hesitate to cut away cancerous growth; a good priest does not hesitate to cut away our sin. If only we had more priests like Father Malloy."

And then Father Malloy himself writes in to say this:

"I was only expounding the Catholic teaching in reference to sexual actions. Many people, also of the Catholic faith, seem unclear about Christ's teaching in this regard.

"We believe that Scripture and the teaching of the official Catholic Church, i.e., the pope with his bishops, gives us clarity in matters of moral principles. Christ loved sinners. He did not tolerate sin."

As I said -- three GREAT letters.

Religion reporter: The cover-ups cost me my faith

Los Angeles Times reporter William Lobdell has a long article (click on this post's title) in today's (July 21) edition of that paper in which he says he was planning to join the Church but because of the cover-ups he did not go through with it.

What would you say to him? I would say, "Bill, do not let anyone's misdeeds or crimes separate you from Jesus' Church, the Blessed Sacrament and all the Sacraments, and God's bountiful grace. Concentrate not on the misdeeds of a relative few but on God's truth and on the holiness of hundreds of thousands of good priests and hundreds of millions of good Catholics. Come home and find rest and peace and truth and salvation in Jesus."

Things like this are why I say we need to work and pray to restore people's faith in the wake of the scandals. I never said that is all we shoud do, of course.

Msgr. Byrne: Canon Law allows removal of prelates who fail to act when they should

In today's (July 21) edition of the New York Times, you might want to read the letter to the editor (click on this post's title) by Msgr. Harry J. Byrne of the Bronx.

Msgr. Byrne writes:

"Had the church’s canon law been followed, bishops who knowingly reassigned miscreant clergymen would have been held accountable. Canon 1395 provides that a cleric who commits a violation of the Sixth Commandment with a person under 16 can be punished by removal. Canon 1389 states that one in authority who performs or omits an act of governance to the harm of another can be punished by removal.

"The bishops shielded themselves from accountability in their Dallas Charter of June 2002, formulated to protect young people in the future. Quick action to remove an abuser was rightly promised. But not a word was said about any bishop who in the future would secretly reassign an abuser.

"It was precisely these reassignments that exponentially multiplied the abuse and damage to children."

Matt Abbott also has a letter in the same edition; he says he will stay in the Church despite the scandals.

Jul 20, 2007

Two bombshells from Cardinal Levada

The July 17 issue of Catholic San Francisco, the Archdiocese of San Francisco's newspaper, reports (click on this post's title) on an interview with Cardinal William Levada, whom Pope Benedict XVI named head of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith.

The Cardinal has some interesting things to say, such as that the Congregation's recent document on the Church was aimed primarily at Catholics who misunderstand the nature of the Church.

The Cardinal also dropped a couple of bombshells.

The first was when he said the Pope's new directive on the Tridentine Mass "was not primarily aimed at the United States." How can he say that, when the directive itself says no such thing?

The Holy Father did not write, "Oh, by the way, the U.S. bishops get to ignore my commands. They do that anyway," did he?

You will see the second bombshell in this paragraph from the Catholic S.F. article:

"At the time of Vatican II, there was a temptation and a tendency to place Church practices and teachings in pre-conciliar and post-conciliar 'baskets,' he [Cardinal Levada] said. 'I know I did it. There was a kind of "throw this out, here's the new stuff". I think many of us regret that.' "




At least he says, "I think many of us regret that." Forty years after the fact, though.

"THROW THIS OUT"! By throwing so much out, they also DROVE out tens of thousands of priests and sisters and millions of lay people. And it is still happening today.

Maybe Cardinal Levada is making amends with the new document on the Church.

We need lots of amends these days, and from many directions. Let them start by restoring the Tridentine Mass widely and accessibly.

Jul 19, 2007

His Eminence will take out loans to fund the settlement

Today's Los Angeles Times reports (click on this post's title) this:

"The Los Angeles Archdiocese plans to pay its share of a record clergy sexual abuse settlement by liquidating investments, taking out BANK LOANS and selling up to 50 non-parish properties, including its administrative headquarters, according to diocesan representatives." [emphasis added]

The Times also says that in late May, "Mahony traveled to Rome to consult with Vatican officials on financial aspects of the settlement and to receive required approvals for the loans and property sales under consideration..." Imagine the impression that made.

The Times also reported this:

"Cardinal Roger M. Mahony and others have said the archdiocese, which drained its litigation reserve fund in payouts for a partial clergy-abuse settlement in December, will try to avoid harming 'essential ministries' and does not plan to sell any parish or school properties.

"Still, the archdiocese, the most populous in the country, 'will have to be a much leaner operation than it is now,' [C]hurch attorney J. Michael Hennigan said. 'The liquidity it has comes from investments that produce income that supports diocesan operations.'"

But that's not all. It gets worse:

"The archdiocese has drawn up a list of 49 other properties that may be sold, some of them vacant land that had been reserved for future church expansions, including in fast-growing Santa Clarita, Hennigan said."

And still worse:

"Hennigan said, however, that specific choices are yet to come. 'I don't think any of the hard decisions have been made, but there will be no impact on essential ministries. The magic word in that sentence is "essential,"' he said."

Oh, and by the way:

"Both men [ Hennigan and Tod Tamberg] said the church's downtown landmark, the Cathedral of Our Lady of the Angels, which cost $189.5 million to build, would not be included in any property sales. Tamberg pointed out that the cathedral is also a parish church and that the archdiocese has promised to protect parish assets in the settlement.

"In addition, Hennigan said the cathedral was built with funds raised specifically for that purpose and cannot be used to cover other costs."

Somewhat similar considerations did not stop the Archdiocese from selling Mrs. Doheny's Gutenberg Bible and other are volumes in 1987, did they?

Do you think stopping abortions will become "an essential ministry" in this Archdiocese in the future? It is not exactly that now, as we know and as millions of aborted babies could attest.

Jul 17, 2007

The L.A. Times ... and what we need to do

Today's Los Angeles Times goes after Cardinal Mahony with front-page stories (click on this post's title), a lead editorial, letters to the editor, an op-ed piece and a column by Steve Lopez.

We should pray for people to not lose their faith over the scandals, of course. We should counsel and encourage anyone who is wavering by reminding them that we should never let any scandal separate us from Jesus and His Church, which unlike others has the full Bible and has Jesus truly present in every tabernacle.

We should also pray for a renewal of holiness, resolve and vigor among every Catholic in our Archdiocese, so that we not only withstand the scandal, we take initiative: We must do our part as never before to spread the Gospel of Jesus Christ far and wide. It is up to you and me and all of us to bring back the fallen-away and to win new souls for Christ and His Church.

And an essential part of Catholic witness today must be pro-life work, because it touches on the biggest moral and social wrongs today, so many people's involvement in the killings of millions of babies in the womb and in the fornication and adultery that lead to the baby-killing.

Holy See's spokesman talks about L.A.

Today Reuters is reporting (click on this post's title) that Jesuit Father Federico Lombardi, spokesman for the Holy See, has commented about the settlement in L.A.

Jul 16, 2007

An abysmal reaction

The Associated Press today reported (click on this post's title) that the judge has accepted the settlement.

The news story ends with this irrationality:

"Vivian Viscarra, 50, who attends Mass at the Cathedral of Our Lady of the Angels, said the victims deserve the payout even though it could hurt the [C]hurch's ability to deliver important services.

"'It's making me reevaluate my views of whether people in the ministry should be married. People do have needs,' she said."

Inasmuch as the overwhelming number of molesters were after sodomy with young men and boys, how could anyone think that the molesters would want marriage, or that marriage could deter them from their disordered lusts?

"My own testifying would not have been a problem"

Today's Los Angeles Daily News story (click on this post's title) on the Cardinal's settlement says this:

"[Cardinal Mahony] said the [C]hurch's decision to settle on the eve of the trials - which were set to begin today - had nothing to do with keeping him from testifying.

"'My own testifying would not have been a problem,' he said."

The politicians

Today's Los Angeles Times news story (click on this post's title) on Cardinal Mahony's settlement includes this passage:

"John Manly, another plaintiffs' attorney, was not so generous, saying city leaders should call for Mahony's removal.

"'How is it that the [C]hurch and cardinal are engaged in misconduct so bad that they are willing to pay basically a billion dollars, with their legal fees, yet not a single public official has called for him to be removed?'"

It is a sad day for our Church when such quotes are in the newspapers.

"This terrible sin and crime"

The Cardinal Mahony settlement news story (click on this post's title) in today's New York Times quotes His Eminence as calling the abuse "this terrible sin and crime."

In that case, when priests admitted to him that they had committed these things, why did he not report the crimes to the authorities?

Even if the "therapy" the Cardinal sent them to had worked, that would not have erased the crimes they had already committed.

This is from the news story:

"John Manly, a lawyer for 50 of the victims, said the victims had been forced to use the civil courts to expose sexual predators and call [C]hurch officials to account because the criminal justice system had failed.

"'I think the question people need to ask themselves is how can Roger Mahony pay three-quarters of a billion for criminal acts, and essentially walk free?' Mr. Manly said. 'Especially since it’s other people’s money, and he has clearly been given special treatment by law enforcement and the power structure in L.A. When is there going to be some accountability, and if not, why?'"

Jul 15, 2007

Now it's $660 million

Today's Associated Press story (click on this post's title) about Los Angeles Cardinal Roger Mahony's settlement of 508 clergy sex abuse cases puts the $$ total at $660 million.

Cardinal Mahony's settlement puts the national total at more than $2 billion. Clergy sodomy and other perversions are expensive.

This is in the AP story:

"The settlement will not affect the archdiocese's core ministry, Mahony said, but the church will have to sell buildings, use some of its invested funds and borrow money. The archdiocese will not sell any parish property, he said."

Last December the Archdiocese of Los Angeles paid $60 million to settle 45 cases that insurance did not cover.

The news story adds this:

"Under the latest deal, the archdiocese will pay $250 million, insurance carriers will pay a combined $227 million and several religious orders will chip in $60 million. The remaining $123 million will come from litigation with religious orders that chose not to participate in the deal, with the archdiocese guaranteeing resolution of those 80 to 100 cases within five years, [Archdiocesan lawyer] Hennigan said. The archdiocese is released from liability in those claims, [Archdiocesan spokesman] Tamberg said."

And this: "Plaintiffs' attorneys can expect to receive as much as 40 percent of the settlement money — or $264 million — for their work."

The Cardinal has a statement at the Archdiocesan website http://www.la-archdiocese.com/

Some pastors have told their flocks in recent years that they can avoid giving money to the Archdiocese downtown and still fulfill their obligation to support their local parish -- by earmarking their donations to a restricted fund in their parish, if the parish has one or more of them. Building funds and sanctuary-upkeep funds are typical such restricted funds.

Jul 14, 2007

BREAKING NEWS: L.A. to pay $600 million to settle abuse cases (and to shield Cardinal?)

The Associated Press has just reported (click on this post's title) that the Archdiocese of Los Angeles on Monday will settle its around 500 clergy sex abuse cases for around $600 million, which breaks down to about $1.2 to $1.3 million per claimant.

The story says not everything is worked out and negotiations are still going on this weekend.

The deal supposedly will include release of confidential personnel files on the clergy after review by a judge.

Not known yet is who will pay what -- the Archdiocese, religious orders and insurers.

The first trial was supposed to begin on Monday. No doubt the deal will keep Cardinal Roger Mahony from having to testify on the witness stand in any of the cases.

Will the Cardinal try to portray this as a victory and "a positive development?"

"NOT" just for the SSPX...that's "not" as in, "N-O-T"

Cardinal Dario Castrillon de Hoyos, president of the Pontifical Commission Ecclesia Dei, said this to the Italian newspaper Il Giornale (sorry, I don't have a link) on July 8:

"I wish to clarify, though, that the papal document has not been made for the Lefebvrists, but because the Pope is convinced of the need to underline that there is a continuity in the Tradition, and that in the Church one does not move forward by way of fractures. The ancient Mass has never been abolished nor forbidden.”

Bishop Donald Trautman of Erie has now said the opposite -- that the Pope's document was made for "those in schism."

I trust the Cardinal's assessment more than the bishop's. How about you?

And besides, the Pope himself said he was taking action for more people than the SSPX.

By the way, when are we going to hear a U.S. bishop echo the Pope's praises of the Tridentine Latin Mass in Summorum Pontificum? Their response so far is to cavil about it.

Did Bishop Skylstad really say that to the Vicar of Christ?

Probably you have heard the rumor that "the U.S. bishops asked Pope Benedict XVI not to issue Summorum Pontificum."

An article (click on this post's title) that is making the rounds on the Internet lends some credibility to that rumor.

EWTN's Raymond Arroyo writes, "According to several prelates I have spoken to, Bishop William Skylstad, the president of the American Bishops Conference, flatly told the [P]ope that the U.S. bishops opposed any revival of the old rite."

P.S. By the way, I should mention that this week's issue of The Tidings did run a letter to the editor that is well-written and very supportive of Summorum Pontificum.

What Cardinal Mahony could do for Summorum Pontificum

Know what Cardinal Mahony could do for Summorum Pontificum, for the Holy Father who has authored it and decreed it and for the glorious Tridentine Latin Mass?

He could be as generous with it as he was in the Nineties with girl altar boys. Recall that he said, as his rationale for illicitly using girl altar boys, "While we currently do not have permission..."

Well, Cardinal Mahony now has permission, and in fact an order, and from the Vicar of Christ himself. Let him now be as bold in obeying that order as he was brazen in disobeying by using girl altar boys.

"Extraordinary," you say?

Our many recalcitrant, obedience-challenged liberal bishops and clergy are decreeing, and making what they hope is a self-fulfilling prediction, that the Tridentine Latin Mass will not be celebrated often and widely because it is the "extraordinary" form.

Yet these are the same liberals who for decades now have used "EXTRAORDINARY ministers of the Eucharist" at Mass often and widely and far more than could ever be "necessary."

What phonies they are. Sickening phonies.

So if the liberals are going to use "extraordinary" to mean "rare" or "in practice, never," for the Mass of the Ages, then they have to use it that way for "extraordinary ministers." The liberals have to get rid of the extraordinary ministers. That'll be the day.

Or the liberals have to use the "extraordinary" Tridentine Latin Mass just as widely and often and ubiquitously as they use "extraordinary ministers." That'll really be the day.

Jul 13, 2007

Told you so! The roadblocks are on the way already

If anyone accuses you of lack of charity and of presuming ill will because you wonder whether the U.S. bishops will drag their feet on Summorum Pontificum as much as they have on Ecclesia Dei, just have them look at the statement (click on this post's title, then click on the link at the site) of Erie Bishop Donald Trautman (pictured above) on Summorum Pontificum.

Bishop Trautman's shocking, unbelievable -- but totally predictable, unfortunately -- statement is the epitome of foot-dragging, resistance and defiance to the Vicar of Christ. Friend Allyson Smith has passed it along from Patrick Archbold's http://www.creativeminorityreport.com/

Bishop Trautman starts out with a bald-faced mischaracterization, misinterpretation, inaccuracy or whatever you wish to call it: He claims that Summorum Pontificum "is prompted by [the Pope's] desire to reach out to those Catholics in schism because of their non-acceptance of the liturgical reforms of the Second Vatican Council."

Sed contra! As we know, the Pope specifically mentions lots of other Catholics, too. Does His Excellency need a remedial course in reading comprehension -- and in English as well as Latin?

The bishop then refers to supporters of the TLM as "still clinging to" it. That condescending smear language means we are emotionally backward cavemen. His smear is exactly analogous to that of the pro-abortion news media who always say we pro-lifers "clutch our Rosary beads."

It gets worse. Bishop Trautman says he already permits a grand total of two Latin Masses in his large diocese, so "I do not foresee a pressing pastoral need on the part of our people." Never mind that the Vicar of Christ has just said HE sees such a need for Holy Mother Church!

Then His Excellency says he will issue "diocesan norms to help apply...the Pope's letter" and he will give an exam to "priests who might want" to say the TLM [emphasis added].

More ominously, Bishop Trautman fires this shot across Summorum Pontificum's bow:
"Further, there will be need to ascertain that the common good of the parish prevails and to ascertain what constitutes a stable community of those requesting the 1962 missal."

Told you so. And most ominously of all, Bishop Trautman says, "We must keep in proper perspective the pope's [sic; read, "Pope's"] more generous use of the liturgical rites prior to [sic; read, "of 1962"]."

Imagine! The bishop of Erie says we have to keep the Vicar of Christ's order "in perspective!"

I think I'd rather keep the bishop of Erie's authority level in perspective when compared to that of the Holy Father. How about you?

Somehow not surprisingly, Cardinal Roger M. Mahony of the Archdiocese of Los Angeles has had this same Bishop Trautman speak at his annual Religious "Education" Congress.

Anyway, didn't ole Q warn everyone about resistance and foot-dragging being a possibility? Yep, sure did.

Priests have been ASKING to learn the Latin Mass

The Providence Journal in Rhode Island, had a good story (click on this post's title) on Summorum Pontificum last Sunday.

The story quotes Father Joseph Santos of Providence, a longtime proponent of the Latin Mass, as saying 20 priests, especially young ones, have been asking him to teach them the Latin Mass, and he thinks he will begin Latin Mass classes for them.

If you are a priest here in L.A. who can teach the Latin Mass, or who wants to learn it, or who knows other priests in either of these categories, please feel free to write in here and tell us what you are learning and hearing. Thank you in advance!

Jul 12, 2007

What the U.S. bishops have said about Summorum Pontificum

You can see our U.S. bishops' material on Summorum Pontificum at this pdf file:

Some of their remarks might prompt some comment.

What is Pittsburgh talking about?

Have you seen the Diocese of Pittsburgh's Department of Worship's statement (click on this post's title) on Summorum Pontificum?

At the end of its paragraph about priests celebrating private Masses according to the 1962 Missal, the Pittsburgh Diocese says, "It is important to note that the celebration of the Roman Missal of Pope Blessed John XXIII is not permitted at regularly scheduled weekday or Sunday [sic]."

"Regularly scheduled weekday or Sunday [Masses]" are not private Masses, so what is the Diocese of Pittsburgh talking about?

"Not permitted at regularly scheduled weekday or Sunday [sic]" is not in Summorum Pontificum -- or it is in it about as much as aborting babies is in the U.S. Constitution.

What is Summorum Pontificum about if not permitting the 1962 rite at "regularly scheduled weekday or Sunday" when the faithful have requested it?

Are the liberals going to interpret Article 5.2's permission from the Holy Father as meaning pastors will permit only occasional Latin Masses, not permanently scheduled ones?

More proof that defying Humanae Vitae was a big mistake

We already know that it was terribly wrong of those various bishops and priests, starting back in 1968, to defy Humanae Vitae, Pope Paul VI's tremendous encyclical letter on marriage and contraception, and to mislead the faithful in Confession and counseling from then on.

The July 15 issue of the National Catholic Register provides more proof of that, as if any were needed, in a must-read front-page article (click on this post's title), "Contracepting the Environment -- Environmentalists Mum on Poisoned Streams."

The "Greens" who pretend to be so concerned about Earth refuse to say or do anything about all the hormones from artificial contraceptive pills that get flushed into our streams, rivers, lakes and oceans, where they are causing radical deformities in fish, frogs, etc., and wreaking who knows how much more damage to the environment and probably the rest of us.

The now-retired pro-life worldwide missionary Father Paul Marx, O.S.B., Ph.D., has always said, "God always forgives, man sometimes forgives, nature never forgives." Nature itself gives the lie to the smarter-than-thou dissident, anti-life Catholics who defy the Magisterium.

We shoud all read, or re-read, that wise and holy tribute to married life, Humanae Vitae, which Pope Paul VI issued 39 years ago this month, on July 25, 1968. You can find it at www.vatican.va or http://www.papalencyclicals.net/Paul06/p6humana.htm

A "common-sense" Q & A on Summorum Pontificum

If you want to see one blogger's "common-sense" Q & A on Summorum Pontificum, please go to my most recent post, "What about the Vatican Press Office's Information Sheet?" and see the comment by "Anonymous 11:27 p.m."

That comment reprints a blogger's lengthy Q & A on the new Motu Proprio. That Q & A is just one blogger's opinion, but it warrants serious reading, commentary and any correction as needed. (Commenter Dad29 has already commented.)

Jul 11, 2007

What about the Vatican Press Office's Information Sheet on the Motu Proprio?

To see several useful links to and about Summorum Pontificum, click on this post's title.

But what do you think of the document at one of the links: The Holy See's Press Office's Information Sheet about the new Motu Proprio?

What authority could an unsigned press information sheet from a press office have? Zero, no?

The reason I am asking is that the information sheet says this:

"5. In parishes, in practice, the liturgy being used will not change: instead, it will be possible for the pastor to add to the Masses celebrated in the ordinary form, a second Mass according to the extraordinary form."

Nothing like this is in the Holy Father's Motu Proprio, nor is it in his explanatory letter.

If pastors have to add a Mass, on Sundays or on weekdays, the only times available for the added Mass will be inconvenient, less desirable ones, won't they?

Watch the liberals who belittle the authority of the Holy Father's Motu Proprio start to claim that the press office's information sheet is a highly authoritative document, or to imply that what is says is actually in the Motu Proprio.

Here is a good resource for the Tridentine Latin Mass

If you are a priest who wants to learn the Latin Mass, or if you know a priest who does, or if you just want to learn more about that Mass, then visit the inspiring and beautiful website of the Institute of Christ the King Sovereign Priest (click on this post's title).

The same goes if you want to see what undeformed, unwreckovated Catholic churches look like: How conducive to worship and how beautiful they are.

This is the way every parish could be.

Jul 10, 2007

Don't forget what else Pope Benedict has said about Latin

In Sacramentum Caritatis, on February 22 of this year, Pope Benedict XVI gave us this instruction:

#62. Speaking more generally, I ask that future priests, from their time in the seminary, receive the preparation needed to understand and to celebrate Mass in Latin, and also to use Latin texts and execute Gregorian chant; nor should we forget that the faithful can be taught to recite the more common prayers in Latin, and also to sing parts of the liturgy to Gregorian chant.

Ask your cardinal or bishop if they have obeyed, or are planning to speedily obey, this request from the Vicar of Christ.

Is your seminary teaching Latin now, or will it next semester?

Is your diocesan liturgy office, or some other diocesan office, teaching Latin prayers and Gregorian chant to the laity, or will it in the very near future?

We should ask our bishops and chancery offices to do these things between now and the Sept. 14 deadline the Holy Father has set.

Jul 9, 2007

The Tridentine parish, and other considerations

Let us hope and pray that the Motu Proprio's provision for a bishop to establish a Tridentine parish does not become a way out for the bishops to shove everyone who loves that Mass into one parish and to stifle celebration of that Mass in the rest of the parishes.

Let us hope and pray that any Tridentine parishes they might establish are not in high-crime downtown areas, remote rural areas, high school chapels, convent chapels, hospital chapels and other inconvenient places.

And let us not put up with them scheduling such Masses at inconvenient times -- early morning, mid-afternoon, late evening. Let them turn a regular Sunday Mass into a Tridentine one. And what would be wrong, in a parish with two daily Masses, with making one Tridentine?

Attention, liberals!

Liberals consider him only the Bishop of Rome, and themselves infallible but not him. He is only the Pope, the Holy Father, the Vicar of Christ.

But we must remind the liberals every so often that Pope Benedict XVI has written this in Summorum Pontificum:

"What earlier generations held as sacred, remains sacred and great for us too, and it cannot be all of a sudden entirely forbidden or even considered harmful. It behooves all of us to preserve the riches which have developed in the Church’s faith and prayer, and to give them their proper place.”

Got that, liberals? "Cannot be...considered harmful."

Watch EWTN at 6 p.m. tonight for Summorum Pontificum analysis

If you get EWTN, watch tonight at 6 p.m.

A special edition of "The World Over," live, is going to comment on Summorum Pontificum.

The guests include:

Most Rev. Fabian Bruskewitz, Bishop of Lincoln, Nebraska
Monsignor James Moroney, Executive Director of the USCCB Secretariat for the Liturgy
Fr. Kenneth Baker, SJ, Editor of Homiletic & Pastoral Review
Most Rev. Thomas G. Doran, Bishop of Rockford, Illinois
Fr. George Gabet, FSSP, North American District Superior of the Priestly Fraternity of St. Peter

Jul 8, 2007

It is PHONY to say nobody wants the Tridentine Latin Mass

You can always count on liberals to be predictable...and wrong. Case in point is Los Angeles Cardinal Roger Mahony's spokesman Tod Tamberg.

Pope Benedict XVI issues a Motu Proprio -- Summorum Pontificum -- and explanatory letter in which he praises the Tridentine Latin Mass and urges wider celebration of it.

So what does His Eminence Cardinal Mahony's spokesman immediately do? Throw cold water on it, and misrepresent the entire situation, too.

You can see Tamberg's quote in today's Los Angeles Times article about Summorum Pontificum(click on this post's title):

"'The appeal of a Mass only in Latin is quite limited,' said Tod Tamberg, spokesman for the Los Angeles Archdiocese, the largest in the U.S. His office estimates that about 650 people attend Latin Masses in the archdiocese each month."

But didn't His Eminence say not too long ago that he thinks only 1% or so of Catholics want the Tridentine Latin Mass? In an Archdiocese of several million, that 1% would constitute not "650" but tens of thousands. The Cardinal's spokesman's office had better get in sync with his boss.

How could a Mass that sustained the Church Universal for more than a millennium and was deeply loved by the faithful in all circumstances and in all the world suddenly have "limited appeal?"

The truth is, the Tridentine Latin Mass has "limited appeal" only to liberals and those unfortunates whom they have misled and dumbed down for the past 40 years. Given a fair chance, the faithful today, just as always, will love the Mass of the Ages.

But will the liberals give the Tridentine Latin Mass a fair chance? They have not, for 40 years, and Cardinal Roger Mahony's spokesman Tod Tamberg sure does not sound inclined to.

Celebrate diversity and change: Free the Tridentine Latin Mass

Your Eminence, Your Excellencies and Reverend Clergy of Los Angeles,

In the name of celebrating diversity and embracing it, please let people in each parish come together in small groups -- small groups are in nowadays, right? -- between now and Sept. 14 so they can request regular celebration of the Tridentine Latin Mass in their respective parishes.

Please do not be afraid of change; please do not resist change; please do not cling to the past.

Allow this innovation; allow this diversity.

The Church in America has done the best it can for the past 40 years to ban the Mass of the Ages, the Tridentine Latin Mass, and to criticize it and misrepresent it, to erase knowledge of it among the faithful and to make attendance at it as hard as possible for the faithful.

That institutional hierarchical and clerical hostility to the Tridentine Mass, spanning 40 years and three generations now, is precisely why you can claim that few people want it. The U.S. Church has given the faithful no chance to know about it and love it.

Please be big of heart, and honest, and generous.

Enough with cheap, petty tricks on your flock, such as assigning Tridentine Latin Masses to remote parishes or hospital chapels or monasteries, and scheduling them at inconvenient hours.

Please: Celebrate diversity! Embrace diversity!

Jul 7, 2007

"Facing away from the people"

Summorum Pontificum does not say anything about which way the priest should celebrate Mass.

But while I am commenting today about the Mass, may I say that it is a typical big lie when the liberals say that in the Tridentine Latin Mass, the priest was "facing away from the people."

No, he wasn't. He was LEADING the congregation.

Is a soldier or Marine who leads his comrades into battle "facing away" from them? Of course not. He is LEADING them.

What about vernacular-Latin missals?

It would have been good if Summorum Pontificum had ordered the bishops in each country to print up vernacular-Latin missals and provide them to parishes and for sale to individuals.

Catholics who were around in the Sixties and before will tell you that OF COURSE the congregation could understand the Latin Mass, because they ALL had vernacular-Latin missals with them and because, having attended Mass all their lives, they understood all the steps of the Mass and they had come to understand much or all of the Latin anyway.

About demand for Tridentine Latin Masses

Do not let anyone, from a Cardinal on down, tell you that the Tridentine Latin Mass cannot be celebrated because of "lack of demand."

Don't look now, but Catholics who were around in the Sixties will tell you there was no big public demand for Mass in the vernacular at the time.

"Lack of demand" is a phony issue.

There was no demand for personal computers 40 years ago. Should they have been prohibited?

Is Art. 5.1 in "Summorum Pontificum" an unfortunate loophole?

"Summorum Pontificum," Pope Benedict XVI's new Motu Proprio, issued today, die septima mensis Iulii (July 7), will take effect die decima quarta Septembris huius anni (Sept. 14 of this year), in festo Exaltationis Sanctae Crucis (on the Feast of the Exaltation of the Holy Cross).

The Motu Proprio and the Pope's explanatory letter make clear that he wants wider celebration of the Tridentine Latin Mass. But the way I read the document -- what about you? -- pastors do not have to provide for any such Mass at all unless an existing Tridentine Latin Mass group in the parish requests it. See the relevant sections of the document, below.

The Catholic News Service provides these summary points about the Motu Proprio:

-- "Any priest can celebrate Mass in private using the 1962 missal, except in the Triduum."

-- "Catholic lay people may attend a priest's private Mass that uses the 1962 missal."

-- "If a recognized group of Catholic laity asks its parish priest to celebrate Mass according to the 1962 missal, he should do so."

-- "The 1962 missal can be used for Mass on any weekday, but no more than one Tridentine Mass should be celebrated in a given parish on Sundays. "

So does the point about the parish group give you pause? Here it is in "Summorum Pontificum," first in the unofficial English translation and then in the official Latin:

Art. 5.1. In parishes where a group of faithful attached to the previous liturgical tradition exists stably, let the pastor willingly accede to their requests for the celebration of the holy Mass according to the rite of the Roman Missal published in 1962. Let him see to it that the good of these faithful be harmoniously reconciled with ordinary pastoral care of the parish, under the governance of the bishop according to Canon 392, avoiding discord and fostering the unity of the whole church.

Art. 5, § 1. In paroeciis, ubi coetus fidelium traditioni liturgicae antecedenti adhaerentium continenter exsistit, parochus eorum petitiones ad celebrandam sanctam Missam iuxta ritum Missalis Romani anno 1962 editi, libenter suscipiat. Ipse videat ut harmonice concordetur bonum horum fidelium cum ordinaria paroeciae pastorali cura, sub Episcopi regimine ad normam canonis 392, discordiam vitando et totius Ecclesiae unitatem fovendo.

The potential trouble with this is, how many parishes have already existing groups attached to the 1962 Missal? If we form such groups between now and Sept. 14, will that satisfy pastors?

Also, I do not see anything that says a pastor may schedule regular daily or Sunday public parish celebration of Tridentine Latin Masses on his own initiative.

By the way, the holy illustration above is from the website of the Priestly Fraternity of St. Peter.

Jul 5, 2007

What will the motu proprio say?

Apparently we are just about on the eve of Pope Benedict XVI's new motu proprio. Its release is expected to take place this Saturday.

Remember when its release was expected this past January? Half a year ago!

I am not expecting the motu proprio to allow sweeping change, but I hope I am wrong about that.

I am also not expecting our U.S. bishops overall to agree with it, to characterize it accurately to us and to implement it fairly. I hope I am wrong about this. But their track record of recent decades on the Tridentine Mass just does not inspire confidence -- does it?

But let us pray -- I mean, OREMUS.

Jul 4, 2007

Happy Independence Day!

Happy Independence Day! For a fine reference site on the Declaration, click on this post's title. You can read about all the signers there, including Catholic signer Charles Carroll of Carrollton.

Let us "breathe a prayer, shed a tear," for all who have died for our beloved country. May Almighty God, the Author of Life and Liberty, have mercy on them all and reward them all.

And if anyone ever tells you that our clergy and hierarchy may not say anything about politics and government, just tell them right back to study all the crosses in our military cemeteries at home and to ponder that our fellow Catholics have constituted at least a quarter of all the military men and women who have ever served, suffered and died for American liberty.

Our fellow Catholics have bought and paid for our freedom, and we will not be silenced now.

Jul 3, 2007

"Hot enough for ya?"

As our summer temperatures heat up, we will all find ourselves asking our friends, and being asked, "Hot enough for ya?"

That reminds me of the story, and maybe you've heard it, too, about the good elderly pastor at Mass on a sweltering Sunday who told the congregation he would give only a short sermon. Then he told them, "Here is my entire sermon: If you think it's hot now, just wait."

You and I and everyone should take this story to heart, of course.

Sadly, it came to mind this morning when I learned that today's Los Angeles Daily News reports (click on this post's title) that our pro-abortion mayor, Antonio Villaraigosa, is in adultery with a Telemundo TV reporter and that is why his wife Corina has filed for divorce.

The mayor is admitting it, news sources say.

According to the News, the mayor's wife says their teenage daughter Natalie Fe "is so upset" that she wants to change her name to Raigosa, her mom's surname before she and then-Antonio Villar combined their names when they married.

Having his wife's name, "Raigosa," still spliced to his after a divorce would be a little awkward for the mayor and his future political ambitions, don't you think? What will he do?

So during this hot summer, let us each think about the Four Last Things (Death, Judgment, Heaven, hell) as they apply to ourselves. And let us pray for the mayor and his accomplice in adultery, that they will think about them, too.

O My Jesus, forgive us our sins! Save us from the fires of hell. Lead all souls to Heaven, especially those in most need of Thy mercy. Amen!
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