Friday, September 28, 2007

book sale

Now, this is an idea for a book sale!
And I thought recycling into toilet paper was the best and right thing to do with certain books!

One shepherd

One of my favorite series of readings in the Divine Office comes to a close today, St. Augustine's Sermon on Pastors. Today it ends with:

"All shepherds should therefore be one in the one good shepherd. All should speak with the one voice of the one shepherd, so that the sheep may hear and follow their shepherd; not this or that shepherd, but the one shepherd. All should speak with one voice in Christ, not with different voices. Brethren, I beg all of you to say the same thing, and to have no dissensions among you. The sheep should hear this voice, a voice purified from all schism, freed from all heresy, and so follow their shepherd, who says: My sheep hear my voice and follow me."

Thursday, September 27, 2007

Masonic membership

the question of Masonic membership by Catholics came up recently, and the clarification by the Holy see that such membership is as forbidden now as it was under the previous Code of Canon Law. The argument against this had been that it was explicitly forbidden in the old code, and is not in the new code. The clarification from the Vatican was that the explicit censure was subsumed under a broader Canon:



Can. 1374 A person who joins an association which plots against the Church is to be punished with a just penalty; however, a person who promotes or directs an association of this kind is to be punished with an interdict.

The Mason's argument "but we don't plot against the Church..." does not hold water either, because the competency to determine this is reserved to the Holy See; not even a bishop holds this competency.

Reading this I also discovered the following:

Can. 1373 A person who publicly incites among subjects animosities or hatred against the Apostolic See or an ordinary because of some act of power or ecclesiastical ministry or provokes subjects to disobey them is to be punished by an interdict or other just penalties.

It is to be observed that the penalty does not apply, unless certain conditions are met:

Can. 1321 §1. No one is punished unless the external violation of a law or precept, committed by the person, is gravely imputable by reason of malice or negligence.
§3. When an external violation has occurred, imputability is presumed unless it is otherwise apparent.

Addressing the possible cases where imputability is excused (cann. ⇒ 1323 and ⇒ 1324;):

Can. 1325 Crass, supine, or affected ignorance can never be considered in applying the prescripts of cann. 1323 and 1324;


Can. 1326 §1. A judge can punish the following more gravely than the law or precept has established:
2/ a person who has been established in some dignity or who has abused a position of authority or office in order to commit the delict;

Seems straight-forward and reasonable. I'll admit, however, that I don't know the difference between ferendae sententiae and latae sententiae.

more of interest...

Can. 1371 The following are to be punished with a just penalty:
1/ in addition to the case mentioned in ⇒ can. 1364, §1, a person who teaches a doctrine condemned by the Roman Pontiff or an ecumenical council or who obstinately rejects the doctrine mentioned in ⇒ can. 750, §2 or in ⇒ can. 752 and who does not retract after having been admonished by the Apostolic See or an ordinary;

Can. 750 §1. A person must believe with divine and Catholic faith all those things contained in the word of God, written or handed on, that is, in the one deposit of faith entrusted to the Church, and at the same time proposed as divinely revealed either by the solemn magisterium of the Church or by its ordinary and universal magisterium which is manifested by the common adherence of the Christian faithful under the leadership of the sacred magisterium; therefore all are bound to avoid any doctrines whatsoever contrary to them.

§2. Each and every thing which is proposed definitively by the magisterium of the Church concerning the doctrine of faith and morals, that is, each and every thing which is required to safeguard reverently and to expound faithfully the same deposit of faith, is also to be firmly embraced and retained; therefore, one who rejects those propositions which are to be held definitively is opposed to the doctrine of the Catholic Church.

Can. 752 Although not an assent of faith, a religious submission of the intellect and will must be given to a doctrine which the Supreme Pontiff or the college of bishops declares concerning faith or morals when they exercise the authentic magisterium, even if they do not intend to proclaim it by definitive act; therefore, the Christian faithful are to take care to avoid those things which do not agree with it.

I suppose weak faith and pride are the chief obstacle to fulfilling this last.

update: I probably wouldn't have posted this if I'd read Anita's post from this morning. My confession is that last night the CCL book was out in support of discussing Masonic membership, and I suppose we both found it enlightening enough to share with you. Since I have, don't feel bad if you come across this twice in one day!

and from RORATE-CÆLI
Obedience to the Lord, reminds Pope Benedict, is obedience to Holy Mother Church:

...obedience to God’s will, obedience to Jesus Christ, must be, really and practically, humble obedience to the Church. This is something that calls us to a constant and deep examination of conscience.

It is all summed up in the prayer of Saint Ignatius of Loyola – a prayer which always seems to me so overwhelming that I am almost afraid to say it, yet one which we should always repeat:

“Take O Lord, and receive all my liberty, my memory, my understanding and my entire will. All that I have and all that I possess you have given me: I surrender it all to you; it is all yours, dispose of it according to your will. Give me only your love and your grace; with these I will be rich enough and will desire nothing more”. (Benedict XVI, Mariazell - Vespers, September 8, 2007)

From Idaho Chooses Life

NEWS RELEASE 9/26/2006
For More Information:
David Ripley

ICL Urges Bishop Driscoll to Intervene

“We issue a public call for Idaho’s Catholic Bishop, Mike Driscoll, to intervene quickly and forcefully in the brewing scandal involving Sister Helen Prejean,” ICL Executive Di­rector David Ripley said in a statement issued Wednesday. Sister Prejean is scheduled to be the keynote speaker at an event to raise money for the Idaho ACLU on Friday, September 28th. (Please see their homepage).

This nefarious organization plays a pivotal role in undermining Christian morality and the sanc­tity of both family and human life.

They proudly proclaim their tenacious opposition to laws like Parental Consent, which has caused untold damage to girls and families – but the larger harm has been the preborn children snuffed out by their accomplices at Planned Parenthood. The Idaho ACLU has opposed every bill in the Legislature since its inception designed to protect preborn children.

A quick view of their website demonstrates beyond debate that they are also involved in a deeper and more pernicious campaign to undermine morality – particularly targeting vulnerable teenagers and preteens. (Please see their “comic strip” on abstinence education).

And there is probably no other organization in America with an agenda more hostile to basic Christian tenets than the American Civil Liberties Union.

Sister Helen Prejean, made a celebrity by her work to end the death penalty, is not just helping the ACLU build its war chest – she is also a keynote speaker at the upcoming Fall Conference, designed to educate and build the faith of rank-and-file Catholics across the state. It is obvious that she cannot fulfill both obligations without causing scandal and demoralizing countless Christians across Idaho.

We ask Bishop Driscoll to intervene. We respectfully and prayerfully urge him to ask Sister Helen to withdraw from Friday’s fundraising gig. If she is unwilling to do so – then we believe it appropriate for Bishop Driscoll to remove her from the Fall Conference.

“It is crucial that the Catholic Church not be misunderstood as sanctioning the radical agenda of the ACLU,” concluded Ripley.

We urge all defenders of the innocent to contact Bishop Driscoll’s office and urge him to take action: 342-1311.

I found the following at Sr. Prejean's blog, it is in response to criticism following her signature appearing on an ad in the New York Times last year calling for the removal of President Bush:

The life issues involved in the beginning of life are exceedingly complex. My stance on abortion is a matter of public record. I stand morally opposed to killing: war, executions, killing of the old and demented, the killing of children, unborn and born. As I have stated publicly many times, I stand squarely within the framework of "the seamless garment" ethic of life. I believe that all of life is sacred and must be protected, especially in the vulnerable stages at the beginning of life and its end.
I signed the ad because as a follower of the way of Jesus and a U.S. citizen, I cannot stand by passively and silently as I witness my government wage such grievous oppression and violence.

what I find hard to comprehend, is if George Bush is such a horror, where is the horror over the work of the ACLU? Is sister so focused on one small button on the "seamless garment" that she is willing to overlook the rest of the entire garment, shredded without mercy by the enemies of life who she is willing to raise money for? How does one blanket oppose the death penalty whereby one would ask the state to renounce the use of lethal force over those tried and convicted of heinous crimes, yet remain silent in turn about granting that same lethal force to be used against the most innocent and vulnerable among us? Why is execution with a trial so much worse than execution without one?

Tuesday, September 25, 2007

Humpty Dumpty

During the two days I was off work to be in Oregon, someone pushed off the wall the Humpty Dumpty database that it is my working life to nurse and coax; I'm not even interested in the usual denials (I didn't do it) because I don't really care that much about who, I just need to patch it up so that things work well again. my chain of Humpty-Dumpties must fall in the right order for all the complex interconnected databases to function properly, which they have done without failing for the last 8 years (hard to beleive). Anyway, that is a long description of why the dearth of posts for the last week! so, oddly, the number of visits recorded by Sitemeter has actually increased (does that mean readers prefer me not to post?) so I'm putting up a list of where recent visitors have come from, as I always find this rather interesting.

United States Rupert, Idaho
United States Canton, Massachusetts
France Collobrires, Provence-Alpes-Cote d'Azur
United States Boise, Idaho
United States Moscow, Idaho
Canada Essex, Ontario
United States Laurel, Maryland
United States Syracuse, New York
United States Boulder, Colorado
Poland Warsaw, Warszawa
United States Fairfax, Virginia
Austria Wien
United States Hinesville, Georgia
Italy Napoli, Campania
United States Star, Idaho
United States Kirkland, Washington
United States Lebanon, Pennsylvania
Australia Camberwell, Victoria
United States Anderson, South Carolina
United States Phoenix, Arizona
United States Laurel, Maryland
United States Jackson, Mississippi
France Paris, Ile-de-France
United States Columbia, Missouri
United Kingdom Greenford, Slough
United States Atlantic City, New Jersey
France Paris, Ile-de-France
Canada Montral, Quebec

So for all those who regularly drop by, and those who come and go, may God's love and mercy be with you, sustain you, and bring you to everlasting life.

Thursday, September 20, 2007

Prayers needed for Phil & Sandra's son

Just in:

Please pray for Abraham and family. Abraham was seriously injured last night while riding his motorcycle. Broken arms, hands, pelvis, legs, one knee. No internal injuries and he was wearing his helmet. Pieces of broken bones were in his neck/spine area. That was first to be operated on. In ICU now. At this writing, 7:30 AM, MT, don't know how he's doing (I'm at home whileSandra at hospital).

In Christ & Dominic,
Phil & Sandra Ferguson

Phil and Sandra are perpetually professed members of the Bl. Margaret of Castello Chapter of the Third Order of St. Dominic.

Wednesday, September 19, 2007

Basics... in a nutshell

If you're fighting a Catholic hospital for this, here's the ammo...

First question: Is the administration of food and water (whether by natural or artificial means) to a patient in a "vegetative state" morally obligatory except when they cannot be assimilated by the patient’s body or cannot be administered to the patient without causing significant physical discomfort?

Response: Yes. The administration of food and water even by artificial means is, in principle, an ordinary and proportionate means of preserving life. It is therefore obligatory to the extent to which, and for as long as, it is shown to accomplish its proper finality, which is the hydration and nourishment of the patient. In this way suffering and death by starvation and dehydration are prevented.

Second question: When nutrition and hydration are being supplied by artificial means to a patient in a "permanent vegetative state", may they be discontinued when competent physicians judge with moral certainty that the patient will never recover consciousness?

Response: No. A patient in a "permanent vegetative state" is a person with fundamental human dignity and must, therefore, receive ordinary and proportionate care which includes, in principle, the administration of water and food even by artificial means.

* * *

The Supreme Pontiff Benedict XVI, at the Audience granted to the undersigned Cardinal Prefect of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, approved these Responses, adopted in the Ordinary Session of the Congregation, and ordered their publication.

Rome, from the Offices of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, August 1, 2007.

William Cardinal Levada
Angelo Amato, S.D.B.
Titular Archbishop of Sila

That about covers it. hat tip to Curt Jester

NUTSHELL: (From Fr. Z)

One of the important points to remember is that food and water are not medicine. A person is a vegetative state remains a human being with the need for what is basic to human life. If people see food and water as medicine, as if that person was receiving them as if they were therapy, then you can more easily argue for their denial. Of course there are situations in which adminstering food and water actually harm a person more than they help. Then hard decisions must be made.

But never forget, and keep yourselves attuned to the basic principles. If food and water are seen as therapy for a bad condition, they can be more easily denied. That is the fundamental error being made in many cases. That is why this statement, the response from the CDF, is so important.

notice the date of the Vatican CDF news release?


do you suppose it's a coincidence that the clarification regarding feeding and hydrating the comatose/PVS individual is released on the same day as the provisions of Summorum Pontificum are in force?

A day late, and a perennial


Father John Donoghue is home from the hospital and planning on
celebrating the 7:00 a.m. Mass tomorrow Wednesday
Thank you, Dave

Closing thought from Amerio in Iota Unum:

333. Diagnosis and prognosis.

Faith in Providence thus proclaims the possibility that the world might rise and be healed by a metanoia which it cannot initiate but which it is capable of accepting once it is offered. The Church’s task in this critical moment is not to attempt to “read the signs of the times,” because “It is not for you to know the times and seasons” (Acts 1:7); it is rather to read the signs of the eternal will, that are there to be read in every age, and stand steadfast before the face of every generation that passes with the centuries.

Monday, September 17, 2007

J & P; Discernment

On Thursday, before I left to take my daughter to Oregon, I read the following in Iota Unum by Romano Amerio; it gave me much to think about, especially in the process of evaluating the participation of our Dominican LPC in the politics of the world. this is a long read, but quite good. the italics and bolding are my own emphasis.

332. Metaphysical analysis of the crisis.

That there is a crisis in the Church and that it is connected with the crisis in the world at large, is universally admitted except by a few odd voices that insist on saying only what people would like to hear, and that prevent themselves from being taken seriously by the very absurdity of their assertions. It is also universally admitted that the crisis takes the form of an imbalance between what may be briefly described as the material development of the human race on the one hand, and its spiritual development on the other. The truth is that this imbalance is the result of an inability to keep technical developments within the ambit of moral developments, and thus to put things in any coherent order. The root cause of the confusion that has characterized the centuries of the modern era is a lack of unity, that is, the absence of a principle to coordinate and unify the various goods with which man is confronted. Unity is the essential condition for the existence of any being, and also for its perfection. The Good, which is itself supremely One, is reflected in creatures in a multiplicity of ways, but that multiplicity is itself contained within an order, that is, in another unity since order is the coming together of many into one; it is the existence of that unity which makes the multiplicity of lesser goods a true image of the single, primordial, eternal Good.

What then is the reason the modern world has lost this unity? I ought here to point out that the unifying principle can never be one of the elements that has to be unified, but must instead be something external and superior to them all; thus mankind’s problems cannot be resolved from a standpoint within man himself. The modern world, by contrast, attempts to unify its goods on the basis of one of the goods internal to it. But none of them in fact has this unifying capacity, because all of them are partial and they are often at odds with each other: economics, pleasure, personal development, freedom. The good that can unify these multiple goods is that ultimate Good by which all things are made and towards which they all converge. This ultimate Good is external to the order of goods it unifies. It is the thing that makes an ordered series of connected things out of the disordered series of unconnected things of which life apparently consists, in such a way that one answers to another and the whole interlocks in a graded series of goods mounting towards an end.

But to return to the question: why is it that the modern world cannot make these connections, and set things in a definite order? Obviously as has been often, perhaps too often, said in this book, because it has lost the concept of an ultimate goal by shutting itself within an absolute Diesseitigkeit (this-worldliness). Something that disposed men to set aside any last end, but does not force them to do so, is the limitation of the human spirit itself. It is this limitation that tends to make men incapable of doing what needs to be done to grasp the order in the world, and of establishing a scale of values. The task is threefold. First, to appreciate individual goods for that they are; second, to grasp the relation that each good has with the primal Good which is both the world’s first cause and its last end. Third, in the light of that relation, to understand the synthetic connection of each good with every other, and set them all in a unified vision of the good as a whole.

When knowledge of the world was limited and not very detailed, the various goods in life that man was aware of were perceived indistinctly in a unitary whole, informed by a single set of values, which was in fact religious in character. An awareness of the relation of things to ultimate reality dominated the human mind and constituted an all embracing form that unified experience. But although the mind of man can contain the whole range of goods in this way, it cannot do so when they become clearly distinguished and fully developed, each within its own sphere. In such circumstances, the mind can no longer envisage different kinds of goods in a single view, as it could when they were less clearly distinguished, but instead considers them one after another, individually. Thus in the modern world we frequently come across the phenomenon of people who base their existence on some particular kind of good and who live it out as if it were autonomous and could subordinate all other goods to itself; this particular good arrogates to itself the role which properly belongs to the prime transcendent good alone. This is in effect to bestow on one kind of worldly good a sort of religious significance amounting to idolatry. Different kinds of good are artificially separated from each other, torn out of their true settings, and cut off from the primal good that sustains them: la forma universal de questo nodo (Paradiso, XXXIII, 90. “The universal form of this knot.”) is thus lost. Individual goods thus tend to take an unlimited hold upon men, and since their relation to the supreme good is not grasped, their autonomous existence, and the muddying vision that they cause when not harmonized in a religious view of life, tend to produce an anti-religious or at best a non-religious attitude in men. Religion then becomes an element in this world; which is what produces secondary Christianity. A transcendent goal beyond this world is first of all restricted within the bounds of changeable individual minds, under the protection of liberal principles, and then is watered down into a complete this-worldliness, since the force of logic ends up dissolving it into an absolute Dieseitigkeit. The Archbishop of Avignon regards the dissolving of Christianity into this world as the distinctive achievement of Vatican II: “The Church,” he says, “has sought a new definition of itself and has begun to love the world, to open itself to it, to turn itself into a dialogue” (O.R., 3 September 1976). This constitutes an attempt to get away from a plurality of goods, to diverse for the mind to contain, and to return to a unified view of the good. But the return is not to be effected, as it should be, by a restoration of the supremacy of a unifying, transcendent good lying beyond the world, but by setting up a pseudo-principle immanent within the world, that refuses to look yonder for an ultimate explanation or to seek an end for man beyond his life in time. The reef upon which this attempt founders is the impossibility of an independent dependency, which is the key ideal in the whole of our analysis.

it all seemed so simple, so straight forward as I left Idaho and traveled across the central Oregon high desert. It even still seemed to make sense when I arived in Bend, which has now grown to 75,000 from the little town it used to be. Everything seemed so clear, until sitting on the throne in a restroom at Central Oregon Community College, and draped over the handicap rail was, not the sports page, but the COCC eco-news! I discovered that I had to save the world from a variety of threats, and that I could save the world with something called carbon offsets. From the local paper I even discovered that I could offer a starting bid of $500,000 to name a new shark species and save it, as did the Golden Palace casino in Monacco when they saved the monkey their $750,000 bid gave them rights to! The people of Bend seemed so unified in their support of green, as they stood in line to get into expensive restrauants, and drove their huge SUVs around the dozens of new round-abouts. Amazing; exchange eco-guilt for conviction! I took the scenic route back to Boise. Avoiding the dry desert, I wanted to see the big trees; here in the desert I miss them. They were everything I remembered, so I had to go express my gratitude to their magnitude!

Then there were the hunters talking about shooting elk over beer and the OSU game at the Austin Junction; "shooting the bull" has a whole new meaning now...

So, after three days exposure to Oregon, I became, for a brief moment, a tree hugger! Something deep within us certainly yearns for the known and the visible that is, and easily distracts us from the First Cause of that which is. Perhaps the renunciation of living in this desert is a blessing which I'd never counted before.

The memory of something outside to unify that which is within kept drawing me back...

The Triennial Ritual: Elections

The Chapter held Elections yesterday, and by the grace of God elected for a three year term from October 21, 2007:

Mark Gross, OPL, Prior;
Stephanie DeNinno, OPL, Subprioress;
Kathleen Schuck, OPL, Treasurer;
Anita Moore, OPL, Secretary;
Mike Turner, OPL, Formation Director;
Les Fitzpatrick, OPL, Whip;
Dorothy Brown, OPL, at large;
Gayle Boyer, OPL, Homedale Director;
John Keenan, OPL, Lay Provincial Council Representative.

St. Dominic, pray for us.

Thursday, September 13, 2007

Mass in Latin at Our Lady of the Valley: Friday, September 14.

Please note an item of interest learned this morning: You are invited to attend the Sacrifice of the Mass celebrated by Msgr. Kelly in Latin this Friday, 14 September 2007, at 8:30 a.m. at the Our Lady of the Valley Parish Church, 1122 Linden, Caldwell, Idaho, [208.459.3653].

Wednesday, September 12, 2007


This brief extract ties in to discussions of local interest on preaching and justice.

From Vienna, a Lesson on How to Sing the Mass
by Sandro Magister

In Loreto, Benedict XVI instead personally participated in the afternoon meeting with the young people, organized by the heads of the pastoral care of young people for the Italian bishops' conference. But here, too, he made a clear departure from the prepared script. On the one side, there were the young actors who took turns reading – with theatrical flair, but still in a contrived manner – the passages selected by the organizers, many of which were taken from the Bible. On the other side, there was the pope, who set aside the texts prepared for him by the offices of the curia and responded to questions from the young people with spontaneous, improvised words that were unmistakably his own, and therefore also capable of penetrating the heart. While he was speaking and saying profound, demanding, touching things, there was an impressive silence and attention among the three hundred thousand young people listening to him. In any case, Benedict XVI did not appear to be isolated. He had the full agreement of the young men and women who recounted their personal stories, some of them dramatic, and asked him questions. He had with him the missionary Giancarlo Bossi, recently freed from Islamic kidnappers in the Philippines. Father Bossi spoke simply and said little, but what he said made clear to everyone what it means to be a genuine missionary of the Gospel of Jesus, and not a humanitarian worker or an anti-globalization activist.

Resourcement. Amerio made an interesting observation that to claim a resourcement which eliminates all resourcements which went before, is to declare your own resourcement to be invalid from the get-go. And so goes the hermeneutic of rupture and discontinuity, which would take another 20+ years after Amerio's book to be "named" by pope Benedict XVI.

On the lighter side

Roger sends the following:

Idle Thoughts of a Retiree's Wandering Mind...

I had amnesia once -- or twice.
Protons have mass? I didn't even know they were Catholic.
All I ask is a chance to prove that money can't make me happy.
If the world were a logical place, men would be the ones who ride horse ssidesaddle.
What is a "free" gift? Aren't all gifts free?
They told me I was gullible and I believed them.
Teach a child to be polite and courteous in the home, and when hegrows up, he'll never be able to merge his car onto the freeway.
Experience is the thing you have left when everything else is gone.
One nice thing about egotists ... They don't talk about other people.
My weight is perfect for my height, which varies.
I used to be indecisive . Now, I'm not sure.
The cost of living hasn't affected its popularity.
How can there be self-help groups?
If swimming is so good for your figure, how do you explain whales?
Show me a man with both feet firmly on the ground, and I'll show youa man who can't get his pants off.
Is it me, or do buffalo wings taste like chicken?

Tuesday, September 11, 2007

Fr. Donoghue update

Bill and Ruth Robertson pass along this update from Fr. Marcellus

Sent: Tuesday, September 11, 2007 1:37 PM
Subject: Fw: Father John Donoghue's condition,,,,URGENT !!!

I just finish talking with Fr. John's sister.

Add to the report below the following update:

---Fr. John had decided to come back to Boise although weak, he was scheduled to travel this Wednesday.

---He got worse and too weak to travel.

---He is holding well at the hospital.

---Hopefully, then, from the hospital he will be taken to a nursing facility for two weeks minimum to see if he gains some strength and can travel back to Boise.

Fr. Marcellus

I confess that in my selfishness I too pray that the Lord for the time being deny Father Donoghue his well earned rest; I am sure he would rather be at home with the Lord, but with good cheer he will continue to work in the Lord's vineyard as long as he draws breath.

Taste and see that the Lord is good - Fr. Donoghue is a man who makes it clear that he has seen, he has tasted, and yes, the Lord is good; very good.

Justice and Peace

Some thoughts based on current discussion of the participation of the Lay Provincial Council in the politics of the world.

Many seem unaware that to hunger and thirst for justice is to be consumed with the desire to render in act what is personally due, not to legislate for what are perceived "rights" of others. Now what is due from Dominicans to the world is the preaching of the word of God; from the acceptance of the word of God comes obedience to the will of God; and the act of obeying God's will is justice and from this comes peace, a foretaste in this world of that peace which passes all understanding in the next. To believe that peace can be obtained in the here and now, apart from God, is a fools errand; a false peace that can only be obtained by coercive force.

All men desire peace, but all men are not willing to end their war on God in order to obtain it. Prefering to place their own will above that of God, justice is perverted and peace will not be obtained.

Oddly upside down as the things of God often are to the world, to hunger and thirst for justice entails not only the overwhelming desire to do God's will, but a concommittant willingness to suffer injustice patiently united to our Lord. Perhaps this is what grates the most on the materialist spirit of the age.

Monday, September 10, 2007

Father Donoghue needs your prayers

As many of you know Father John is on vacation in Pittsburg, PA but was having difficulty breathing this last weekend and was admitted to the hospital where his condition was stabilized and then he was released Saturday.

But then last night (Sunday) he became very ill again and was transported by ambulance to the hospital in Pittsburg where he remains. His niece Grace just called to advise that the medical staff told her that the only things keeping him alive are prayers and massive quantities of steroids.

Please kindly continue your prayers so that he may return safely to Boise soon.

God Bless,


Light reading

Orthometric adjustment tool.

A. M. D. G.




The first part of our work will embrace the study: 1. Of the Christian revelation, and of the credentials by which it is known to be from God; 2. Of the Catholic Church, as the Heaven-appointed teacher of the Christian revelation.

The Christian Revelation and its credentials.

Under this head we are to consider: 1. The nature of revelation; 2. The credentials of revelation; 3. Pre-Christian revelations; 4. The Christian revelation; 5. The records of the Christian revelation; 6. The credentials of the Christian revelation; 7. The miraculous spread of the Christian revelation.


The Nature of Revelation.

7. Revelation is the removal of a veil. When the discovery of truth is made by our natural powers, it is called natural revelation. By it man can easily know the existence of God as the First Cause and Master of all things, the Rewarder of good and evil; the survival of the soul in another life of happiness or misery; the principles of the moral law, in particular the duty of worshipping and serving God; etc. These truths have been known in all ages by all men who had the full use of reason. St. Paul, in his Letter to the Romans, speaking of the ungodly, writes: “The invisible things of Him (of God), from the creation of the word, are clearly seen, being understood by the things that are made; His eternal power also, and Divinity: so that they are inexcusable. Because that, when they knew God, they have not glorified Him as God, nor given Him thanks” (I, 20, 21). And of the moral law he says that even the gentiles have the law “written in their hearts, their conscience bearing witness to them” (II, 15). Many other truths concerning God can be known by reason; as is proved in Natural Theology, a division of Metaphysics.

8. The word “revelation” is however more commonly used in another meaning; and it is in this latter sense that we shall take it throughout this book; namely, to designate a manifestation of truth by God to man by a light superior to reason. In this meaning it is properly called “supernatural revelation”. It is supernatural, because such light is not part of our nature, nor due to it, nor attainable by its unaided power. It supposes a special action of God announcing the truth to man. He has made this announcement through Prophets, Apostles, and other sacred writers, but especially through His Divine Son. He has thus taught us that we are destined to a supernatural happiness to which our nature cannot possibly give us a claim, and which is to consist of seeing God face to face. A supernatural end cannot be reached but by supernatural means which our nature by its own powers can neither discover nor employ (n. 172).

9. To make known to us our supernatural end and the means of attaining thereto, a supernatural revelation was, therefore, absolutely necessary. Though it is not thus necessary for the knowledge of natural truths, even of such as regard religion and morality, still many difficulties impeded the acquisition of such knowledge by unaided reason. In particular, very few men have the talent and the opportunity to study such subjects deeply; and, even under the most favorable circumstances, owing to the depravity of the human heart, there always have been doubts and errors on many important points of morality and religion. This is abundantly proved by the history of past ages; and it is seen even to-day in the teachings of various philosophic systems which deny, or at least question, our most important duties to God. Therefore, a supernatural revelation is, not indeed absolutely, but yet relatively necessary for the proper understanding even of the natural law; it is necessary considering the condition of mankind. It may also be called morally necessary, the necessity arising from the fact that, while there is no physical impossibility, yet there is such a great difficulty in acquiring such knowledge as a man needs to lead a life worthy of himself and of his Creator. Those who reject revelation are fond of calling themselves “rationalists”, as if they were more rational than other men, while they are so irrational as to refuse additional light when it is offered them; and thus they act most rashly in matters in which the highest interests of man are concerned.

10. When we know a fact or truth, whether by our own powers or by revelation, we may still fail to see how the matter can be explained. It is then called a mystery: a natural mystery, if we arrive at the knowledge of its existence by our natural powers; a supernatural mystery, if by revelation only. That the scenes which we have formerly witnessed are recorded in our memory, we know; but how they are there recorded, is a natural mystery; how the three Divine Persons are one God, is a supernatural one. It is absurd for any man to deny that there are natural mysteries; a fortiori, we cannot deny that there are supernatural ones: for the things of God must necessarily be more incomprehensible to us than the sensible things around us. “The things that are of God,” says St. Paul, “no man knoweth but the Spirit of God”; and he adds that we have received this Spirit, “that we may know the things that are given us from God” (1 Cor II, 11, 12). We have then no right to refuse acceptance of a revelation, on the plea that it contains mysteries.

follow the link and read on...

Saturday, September 08, 2007

highlights of my week

Although it's been a busy week, and one plagued with migrain headaches, these gems were gems in my week:

From Monday’s Office of Readings,
From the Imitation of Christ,

Many hear the world more easily than they hear God; they follow the desires of the flesh more readily than the pleasure of God.

The world promises rewards that are temporal and insignificant, and these are pursued with great longing; I promise rewards that are eternal and unsurpassable, yet the hearts of mortals respond sluggishly.

Who serves and obeys me in all matters with as much care as the world and its princes are served?

Blush then, you lazy, complaining servant, for men are better prepared for the works of death than you are for the works of life. They take more joy in vanity than you in truth.

I am accustomed to visit my elect in a double fashion, that is, with temptation and consolation. And I read to them two lessons each day: one to rebuke them for their faults, the other to exhort them to increase their virtue.

From Thursday and Saturday’s Office of Readings,

A sermon on the beatitudes by St. Leo the Great, pope.

Concerning the content of Christ’s teaching, his own sacred words bear witness; thus whoever longs to attain eternal blessedness can now recognize the steps that lead to that high happiness. Blessed, he says, are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven. It might have been unclear to which poor he was referring, if after the words Blessed are the poor, he had not added anything about the kind of poor he had in mind. For then the poverty that many suffer because of grave and harsh necessity might seem sufficient to merit the kingdom of heaven. But when he says: Blessed are the poor in spirit, he shows that the kingdom of heaven is to be given to those who are distinguished by their humility of soul rather than by their lack of worldly goods.

After preaching the blessings of poverty, the Lord went on to say: Blessed are they who mourn, for they shall be comforted. But the mourning for which he promises eternal consolation, dearly beloved, has nothing to do with ordinary worldly distress; for the tears which have their origin in the sorrow common to all mankind do not make anyone blessed. There is another cause for the sighs of the saints, another reason for their blessed tears. Religious grief mourns for sin, one’s own or another’s; it does not lament because of what happens as a result of God’s justice, but because of what is done by human malice. Indeed, he who does wrong is more to be lamented than he who suffers it, for his wickedness plunges the sinner into punishment, whereas endurance can raise the just man to glory.

Next the Lord says: Blessed are the meek, for they shall inherit the earth. To the meek and gentle, the lowly and the humble, and to all who are ready to endure any injury, he promises that they will possess the earth. Nor is this inheritance to be considered small or insignificant, as though it were distinct from our heavenly dwelling; for we know that it is the kingdom of heaven which is also the inheritance promised to the meek. The earth that is promised to the meek and which will be given to the gentle for their own possession is none other than the bodies of the saints. Through the merit of their humility their bodies will be transformed by a joyous resurrection and clothed in the glory of immortality. No longer opposed in any way to their spirits, their bodies will remain in perfect harmony and unity with the will of the soul. Then, indeed, the outer man will be the peaceful and unblemished possession of the inner man.

And somewhere this last few days, I read something for which I’ve lost the citation but went something like this:

Joseph’s brothers did more for him by their evil and malice than they ever might have by their kindness.

Now that’s something to think about.

Friday, September 07, 2007

Getting beyond shame

Father Z (wdtprs) posted the following article (his own comments in red):

Church in the World
8 September 2007

Dutch Dominicans call for laity to celebrate Mass

William Jurgensen

THE DOMINICAN Order in the Netherlands has issued a radical recommendation that lay ministers chosen by their congregations should be allowed to celebrate the Eucharist if no ordained priests are available. [Are they out of their minds? This sounds like the leavings of Schillebeeckx to me.]

In a booklet posted to all 1,300 parishes in the country, it says that the Church should drop its priest-centred model of the Mass in favour of one built around a community sharing bread and wine in prayer. [In other words become Protestants.]

"Whether they are women or men, homo- or heterosexual, married or single, makes no difference. What is important is an infectious [give the homosexual component "infectious" might be quite apt.] attitude of faith," said the brochure, which has been approved by the Dutch order’s leaders. However, the Dutch bishops’ conference promptly said that the booklet appeared to be "in conflict with the faith of the Roman Catholic Church". It said it had no prior knowledge of the project and needed to study the text further before issuing a full reaction. [And to gather the stake, wood and oil.]

The 38-page booklet, Kerk en Ambt ("Church and Ministry"), reflects the thinking of the Belgian-born Dominican theologian Fr Edward Schillebeeckx. [Thought so. This was the pure **** we were force fed in my U.S. seminary by the, then, vice-rector and, now, ex-priest who taught sacramental "theology". We had a constant diet of Schillebeeckx’s books. I don’t think it is a surpise that, from my class at that seminary and for that diocese, I am the only one from my year still in active ministry.] In 1986 the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith under the then Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger warned Fr Schillebeeckx that his views on the Eucharist and lay ministry were "erroneous" but took no action against him. The booklet was written by four Dominicans including Fr André Lascaris, a theologian at the Dominican Study Centre for Theology and Society in Nijmegen. Fr Lascaris was involved in peace work for Northern Ireland from 1973 until 1992 and has published numerous articles and books on conflict, violence, forgiveness and reconciliation. The other authors are Fr Jan Nieuwenhuis, retired head of the Dominicus ecumenical centre in Amsterdam, Fr Harrie Salemans, a parish priest in Utrecht, and Fr Ad Willems, retired theology lecturer at Radboud University, Nijmegen.

The booklet says that many Dutch Catholics are frustrated that combining parishes and closing churches is the main response to the challenge of a dwindling clergy. "The Church is organised around priests and actually finds the priesthood more important than local faith communities," said Fr Salemans [Funny… does that not sound just like the wacky ideas of Sr. Joan Chittister?] in an interview posted on the order’s Dutch website. "This is deadly for local congregations."

Using the early Church as its model, the booklet said a congregation could choose its own lay minister to lead services. The minister and the congregation would speak the words of consecration together. "Speaking these words is not the exclusive right or power of the priest," the booklet said. "It is the conscious expression of faith by the whole congregation." [Heresy.]

The ranks of Dutch Dominicans have thinned along with those of other clergy, and now number only 90 men. Since 2000 around 200 parishes in the Netherlands have been closed due to the lack of priests and the fall in church attendance

That the sons of St. Dominic would betray Jesus Christ in such manner is beyond understanding, but that is how things are in some quarters.

St. Paul said, "And how shall they hear without a preacher?" woe is to the preacher who is a dumb dog that does not bark, but blindly leads others into the pit.

St. Dominic, pray for us.

History of the World

I received this humorous forwarded email from Dominican Tertiary Kathleen Schuck.

History Lesson

The two most important events in all of history were the invention of beer and the invention of the wheel.

The wheel was invented to get man to the beer. These were the foundation of modern civilization and together were the catalyst for the splitting of humanity into two distinct subgroups:

1. Liberals 2. Conservatives.

Once beer was discovered, it required grain and that was the beginning of agriculture. Neither the glass bottle nor aluminum can were invented yet, so while our early humans were sitting around waiting for them to be invented, they just stayed close to the brewery. That's how villages were formed.

Some men spent their days tracking and killing animals to B-B-Q at night while they were drinking beer. This was the beginning of what is known as the Conservative movement. Other men who were weaker and less skilled at hunting learned to live off the conservatives by showing up for the nightly B-B-Q's and doing the sewing, fetching, and hair dressing. This was the beginning of the Liberal movement.

Some of these liberal men eventually evolved into women. The rest became known as girlie-men or wussies. Some noteworthy liberal achievements include the domestication of cats, the invention of group therapy, group hugs, and the concept of voting to decide how to divide the meat and beer that conservatives provided.

Over the years Conservatives came to be symbolized by the largest, most powerful land animal on earth; the elephant. Liberals are symbolized by the jackass.

A few modern liberals like Mexican light beer (with lime added), but most prefer a chilled glass of Sauvignon Blanc, with passion fruit and kiwi aromas which are marked by grassy notes, then rounded out on the midpalate by peach flavors crisp and refreshing, with a hint of chalky minerality on the finish; or Perrier bottled water. Liberals dislike beef, but sushi, tofu, and French food are standard liberal fare.

Another interesting evolutionary side note: most of the liberals women have higher testosterone levels than their men. Most social workers, personal injury attorneys, Ivy League professors, journalists, dreamers in Hollywood, group therapists and "alternative" lifestyle advocates are liberals. Liberals did invent something: the designated-hitter rule because it wasn't fair to make the pitcher also bat.

Conservatives drink Sam Adams, Harpoon IPA or Yuengling Lager. They eat red meat and still provide for their women. Conservatives are big-game hunters, rodeo cowboys, lumberjacks, construction workers, firemen, medical doctors, police officers, corporate executives, athletes, Marines, and generally anyone who works productively. Conservatives who own companies hire other conservatives who want to work for a living.

Liberals produce little or nothing. They like to govern the producers and decide what to do with the production. Liberals believe Europeans are more enlightened than Americans. That is why most of the liberals remained in Europe when conservatives were coming to America. They crept in after the Wild West was tamed and created a business of trying to get more for nothing.

Here ends today's lesson in world history: It should be noted that a Liberal may have a momentary urge to angrily respond before forwarding it. A Conservative will simply laugh and appreciating the truth of this history will forward immediately to others, especially liberals just to piss them off.

Thursday, September 06, 2007

How can I miss you when you won't go away?

Trying to get two teens off and away to a start in life on their own, the old Dan Hicks song has haunted me all summer. Anita (bless you) called to my attention:

Dan Hicks and the Hot Licks
Egyptian Theatre
700 W. Main
Boise, ID 83701

$29.50 at the Egyptian box office, 387-1273; $32 day of show.
7:30 p.m. Sept. 6

That's as close to wanting to go to a concert I've come since the 70s; close, but not going. Did give me a smile, however.

YouTube has "I Scare Myself" but I haven't found an online version of "How can I miss you when you won't go away."

Wednesday, September 05, 2007

"Orthometer" test at local parish

Peter Simon passed; may light perpetual shine upon him.

Father sends his best to Anita and Sue.

Behind the Spud Curtain?

too good to pass.
hat tip to Fr. Richtsteig at Orthometer.