Friday, June 30, 2023

Just a note. But what a note.

A reminder that it’s all worthwhile. Eternally.

Don’t forget to thank your priest. Take it from me: it goes straight to the heart. Laus Deo.

Thursday, June 29, 2023

My latest column: “Synod Cancer: ‘Creating’ Catholic-Free ‘Spaces’ In The Church?“

June 29, 2023


“Welcome” is a predominant theme of the Instrumentum Laboris presented in Rome on June 20 for the next phase of the “Synod on Synodality.”

The document makes clear a demand for the priority of “creating spaces” for those who feel excluded because of their status or sexuality. You likely know the list: divorced and remarried, LGBTQ+ individuals, and now we hear of “polygamists” as well. The document reportedly also calls for “more female governance, possibility of female deacons and married priests.”

The drumbeat refrain that has been sounded all along through the Synod process since 2021 which has led to this moment is that these groups who live in ways contrary to Church teaching or who champion certain changes in Church practice are not welcome. Thus, the perceived need to create “spaces” for them in which their needs and aspirations are somehow satisfied.

A reporter at the presentation of the Synod Instrumentum Laboris in Rome asked if all this means that Church teaching on sexuality is “up for discussion.” Cardinal Hollerich, the relator, punted by saying that, no, we are not doing that. He responded that there are some “who do not want to walk with us” but that for those who do, we want to welcome them.

But we are left to ask again: What does this mean? Does “welcome” mean that the host must satisfy all of the demands of the guest without question otherwise we fail to be a good host?

“How can we create spaces where those who feel hurt by the Church and unwelcomed by the community feel recognized, received, free to ask questions and not judged? In the light of the Post-Synodal Apostolic Exhortation Amoris Laetitia, what concrete steps are needed to welcome those who feel excluded from the Church because of their status or sexuality (for example, remarried divorcees, people in polygamous marriages, LGBTQ+ people, etc.)?” (Instrumentum Laboris, Synod on Synodality, B 1.2, question 6).

If I enter someone’s house and insist that I want to wear my shoes, when the custom of the house is to take them off upon entering, does it necessarily follow that I must interpret such to mean that I am not being welcomed? It is only my shoes that are not being welcomed, and then only if they remain on my feet. Surely I am capable of changing my attitude to accommodate the concept of welcome to exclude choice of footwear?

The Church is the Body of Christ. Jesus is the space that welcomes all. He has been with the Church from her very beginning because the Church has always been in every way His Body in the world. How we are to now create “spaces” for alien and contradictory elements within the Body of Christ, now judged to be unwelcoming of sin?

Read the rest:

Tuesday, June 27, 2023

Undermining the Deposit of Faith requires removing those who defend it

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Pledge your prayers for Bp. Strickland HERE

(LifeSiteNews) — By now you’ve all heard the news of the Vatican’s investigation into Bishop Joseph Strickland of Tyler Texas, a bishop who has – at least for orthodox Catholics in America – taken on the mantle of Bishop Fulton Sheen as “America’s Bishop.”

For those who have been aware of Pope Francis’ reign of terror in the Vatican and seen, for example, the cancellation of Cardinal Raymond Burke, the shunning of Cardinal Joseph Zen, and the shocking rebuke of Cardinal Robert Sarah, the news of this investigation into Bishop Strickland is not surprising and certainly full of foreboding.

The latest news we have at this time about visitation phase, where the Vatican had Bishop Dennis Sullivan of Camden, New Jersey, and former Bishop Gerald Kicanas of Tucson, Arizona, is that the interview portion is complete.

In order to understand the gravity of this situation, you need to know about Bishop Kicanas, a former auxiliary Bishop of Chicago.

Kicanas was the head of Catholic Relief Services (CRS) in 2012 when they were funding pro-abortion groups. When LifeSite and American Life League pointed out that CRS was funding major pro-abortion groups, like Population Services International, which markets abortion drugs in the developing world.

He defended the $2.7 million grant to the abortion giant, saying it was for malaria prevention, bashed LifeSite for “misinformation,” and even cut a major CRS printing contract with the husband of the head of the American Life League in retaliation.

At the U.S. bishops’ conference in 2018, Bishop Kicanas was among a rat pack of bishops and cardinals wanting to change the bishops’ voter guide to downplay abortion as a primary concern. Joining Kicanas was a who’s who of the most unfaithful bishops in America, including Bishop (now Cardinal) Robert McElroy of San Diego, Bishop John Stowe of Lexington, Kentucky, and of course Chicago Cardinal Blase Cupich.

And remember, back in 2010 he was all set to become the president of the USCCB. The homosexual-pushing Rainbow Sash Movement endorsed him. Kicanas was vice president, and it was customary to go from vice president to president. But he was so controversial that Cardinal Timothy Dolan was appointed instead.

However, Kicanas’s history on priestly sexual abuse was likely the final nail in the coffin of his failure to be approved to take the top spot in the USCCB. Before becoming Bishop of Tucson, Kicanas served as the rector of the Mundelein Seminary in Chicago. During his time there he allowed future child molester Father Daniel McCormick to be ordained despite allegations of sexual misconduct.

Bishop Kicanas recently defended himself against allegations of wrongdoing by saying, “I never received any allegation, report or concern about McCormack during his seminary years at Mundelein that involved sexual abuse of anyone.”

The National Catholic Register has pointed outthat Kicanas was at least aware of McCormick engaging in consensual homosexual acts while intoxicated, if not actual illegal abuse. According to the NCR article, Kicanas commented on these early “experiences” by saying, “Evaluation indicated that the nature of the experiences he had related was experimental and developmental, although it indicated that drinking might be a concern.”

That is who Pope Francis sent in to investigate Bishop Strickland!

Like most good men, good bishops are very trusting people. And therefore, they do not suspect ill intent in those they meet. However, among those who are living corrupt lives, suspicion is the name of the game. They tend to distrust everyone because they themselves are not worthy of trust. So when you have a man like Bishop Kicanas doing the investigation on Bishop Strickland, it is very concerning.

While Bishop Strickland might believe it is going to be fair, I find that hard to believe. Rather, I think that, from my experience of watching these things play out over the last 25 years, bad bishops conspire against good ones to have them removed.

That Pope Francis is going after Bishop Strickland is not new news. A month ago, Terry Barber of Virgin Most Powerful Radio revealed that the papal representative in America, Christophe Pierre, had waved his finger at Bishop Strickland during the bishops’ conference years ago.

Bishop Strickland is a hero. He not only stands for life and family, faith and freedom with dignity and a deep love for Christ, he is courageous even when he knows it may cost him. That is what saw him come to Los Angeles to defend the dignity of nuns and pray for deliverance from anti-Christian spirit invading America. His great love for the faithful and for Pope Francis is what led him to publicly correct the Pope, saying that “it is time for me to say that I reject his program of undermining the Deposit of Faith. Follow Jesus.”

So we must pray for Bishop Strickland now. Please join in praying for him, fasting for him, and if you’d care to do so with us, we will be delivering to Bishop Strickland a prayer pledge soon. Please click here or on the link below to add your name to the prayer pledge and share that with all those you think might like to join.

Source: John Henry Westen, LifeSite

Saturday, June 24, 2023

My latest column: "Orthodoxy Under Attack In Columbus"


June 22, 2023


Being a “cradle Catholic” is one thing. Dying an intentional Catholic quite another. A current contretemps in Columbus decidedly proves the case.

Jack D’Aurora is quite upset. Or perhaps merely disappointed. He, a columnist in a Columbus paper, at any rate makes clear that he approves of the Paulist Fathers and their pomps and works. The current bishop of the place, however, believes that their public manifestations of faith, or the lack of it, must be corrected and has acted accordingly. This has met with the considered disapproval of Mr. D’Aurora, who takes care at the end of a column penned by him in the "The Dispatch", to describe himself as a “cradle Catholic.”

This assumes, we are to take it, that once a “cradle Catholic” always a Catholic in the fullest and most correct sense of that word. But defining the word “Catholic” in its relation to the truth seems to be the issue at the heart of this matter.

In the published pieced authored by D’Aurora, he charges Bishop Fernandes of Columbus with no less than dissembling. He writes, “Why is it Columbus Catholic Diocese Bishop Earl Fernandes cannot speak the truth? In the May 28 edition of The Dispatch, he again denied that he forced the Paulist priests to leave the Newman Center last year and repeated the fiction they ‘chose to leave’.”

The layman’s rash mischaracterization of the bishop may be completely unnecessary. As one who writes columns weekly I can certainly understand the temptation to discover conflict where there is mere misunderstanding. Or the lack of readiness to admit there may be a number of ways to describe one reality that may in fact not be contradictory, contrary to first impression following initial acquaintance with the facts. Or that the one launching accusations of lying may in fact be himself playing fast and loose with the truth. Upon collecting various accounts of a matter, one finds often that each person offering an opinion may choose to highlight a different aspect of the case. More than one of these may at the same time be true.

What we do know is true is that the bishop in each place over which he is given jurisdiction has the sacred duty of determining the suitability of any given priest to teach, sanctify, and govern as a collaborator in the episcopal ministry within his diocese. This is part of the perennial truth pertaining to the concept “Catholic.”

Anyone who has year upon year glanced at the titles available on the website of the Paulist publishing house or perused the selection of books on display in the windows of the Paulist establishment in Boston is well aware that the organization has long labored to undermine essential truths of the Faith. If the Paulists in Columbus were holdouts in this effort, it surely would have been considered newsworthy and very unlikely to have escaped our attention thus far.

Given what we know of the very public and unapologetic lack of orthodoxy for many years on the part of Paulists generally, that the bishop sought to exercise some gentle oversight by determining how many Paulists may serve the not inconsiderable number of young and impressionable Catholics on a local college campus, and what sorts of pastoral work they would be authorized to undertake in that regard, is hardly to be considered draconian.

D’Aurora’s overheated reaction to a bishop exercising oversight in what could only be described as a pastoral manner and more than generous, given the untrustworthy nature of the Paulist apostolate. That, as a result, the Paulists overreacted and chose to pull up stakes entirely is not to be laid at the bishop’s door.

Also, in the same column, D’Aurora sounds the alarm:

“Beyond his aversion to the truth, Fernandes is blind to the reality about him. For years, the Catholic Church has been losing members and has failed to recruit enough priests. Fernandes sees the need to close 15 of his churches as ‘an adventure.’ Memo to Bishop Fernandes: Your ship is taking on water. This is an emergency and time to rethink everything.”

Physician, heal thyself. That a bishop, or Paulist priests, or even a Pope may misrepresent the truths of the Faith, whether culpably or not, is one thing. For D’Aurora to act as though this fact gives him license to do the same, appearing as he does to take cover behind dissemblers holding ecclesiastical office, is quite another. The Catholic Deposit of Faith, as numerous catechisms make clear, and as Bishop Strickland tirelessly labors to demonstrate, is independently verifiable apart from any person who claims to accurately or not represent it, for anyone who chooses to research the matter. Numerous souls manage to do so, and enter into communion with the Church as a result, all the time.

The office itself of bishop, Pope, or priest, is not what makes the content of his personal speech in homilies or writings or conversation true. The truth is ever independently true apart from the one who claims to be truthful. The writings and teachings and enunciations of ecclesiastics to be verifiably truthful must always and ever be submitted to the judgment of the Church’s Deposit of Faith and morals. It is precisely the role of bishop to personally ensure this very thing within his diocese.

That D’Aurora, or others for that matter, are shocked and perhaps even scandalized, in the good sense of that word, as a result of witnessing bishops like Fernandes in the act of exercising their apostolic teaching office, is a good thing. We should ardently pray for more of it.

D’Aurora again claims an ability to analyse the truth, this time of cause and effect, in the same article: “But the church hierarchy does excel at one thing: losing people. Pew Research reports there are 6.5 former Catholics in the U.S. for every Catholic convert. ‘No other religious group analyzed in the 2014 Religious Landscape Study has experienced anything close to this ratio of losses for gain via religious switching’.”

Worth remarking then that D’Aurora absolves the Paulists of any responsibility for the loss of faithful over these many years, given the long presence of these priests on campuses and in urban areas. And blames the bishops. He does not grant the possibility that Bishop Fernandes recognizes the pastoral emergency and properly credits the Paulists and their devious ilk for the growing bleed of Catholics from active participation in the Church which the writer decries. And that he has chosen to take action which will stanch it.

The business of the Church is truth. Christ is the truth and has consigned the unchanging Word in Himself never to be mutilated or altered. With the confidence of that same faith Bishop Fernandes knows well it is the mission of the Church to be faithful, not “successful” as the world judges.

As St. Paul, one of the first and greatest evangelizers, taught:

“I planted, Apollos watered, but God gave the growth. So, neither he who plants nor he who waters is anything, but only God who gives the growth. He who plants and he who waters are equal, and each shall receive his wages according to his labor. For we are God’s fellow workers; you are God’s field, God’s building” (1 Cor. 3:5ff).

St. Paul says our work is merely to plant the seed of truth and then to let God do His work. A tragedy his namesakes in the ministry failed to take note.

Thank you for reading and praised be Jesus Christ, now and forever (

A version of this column was published the in the June 22, 2023 edition of The Wanderer Catholic Newspaper.

Wednesday, June 21, 2023

“Ruin: A How-To”


On October 5, 1941, a Soviet bomber pilot reported the presence of a German armored column on a highway eighty miles outside Moscow, racing toward the city’s outer line of defense. He was arrested, because Soviet authorities didn’t tolerate defeatism, alarmism, and absurd conspiracy theories. I’d tell you where that German column actually turned out to be, but you already know.

This was the Soviet Union’s experience of 1941, over and over and over again.

You can’t tell this dude anything

Germany and the Soviet Union signed a non-aggression pact in the summer of 1939, and then Stalin sank his fingernails into the thing and believed it. It was declarative political reality, paper with signatures, and it was pretty clear to Koba that the German leader wasn’t the kind of guy who went around telling lies. Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn: “Not to trust anybody was very typical of Josef Stalin. All the years of his life did he trust one man only, and that was Adolf Hitler.” I thought of Stalin and his trustworthy Bavarian bro this week because I was reading MT Anderson’s magnificent book about Dmitri Shostakovich and the siege of Leningrad, and he covers all of this as background:

Several sources quite specifically reported to the Soviet government that the Germans would invade around dawn on June 22. Their reports can be found in the Soviet archives in a “folder of dubious and misleading reports.” Then, shortly before dawn on June 22, Germany invaded the Soviet Union. Military leaders on the border called in reports of the invasion, and the people they talked to in Moscow declined to believe them. Soviet border troops held their fire, seeing Germans while being ordered to understand that no true invasion could possibly be underway. Stalin knew better, and contradicting Josef Stalin was known to be a fatal mistake. Achieving an entirely avoidable surprise, the Germans destroyed much of the Soviet air force on the ground, parked wingtip-to-wingtip for the convenience of the invader’s bombers.

The Germans lost the resulting war, but they lost it because Soviet leadership accepted the waste of human life to grind down the enemy. The US and the UK each lost a little over 400,000 people to World War II; the Soviets lost somewhere well north of 20 million, about half of that in civilian deaths. 

An invasion that could have been met with brutal severity from the first moment instead achieved considerable initial success against a supine nation because the Soviet leader, and the chain of subordinates beneath him who were forced to adopt his conception of facts and truth, assumed that things they didn’t wish to believe constituted disinformation. Millions of lives were wasted for that 

illusion. A society that categorizes inconvenient truths in this way is committing a form of suicide, hiding from hard facts that demand acknowledgment. 

Now: In 2021, the lab leak theory was a disgusting lie with “racist roots.”

In June of 2023, the, uh, first people who got sick with Covid turn out to have been, uh, scientists at the lab in Wuhan. BUT THEY PROBABLY HAD SOME BAT SOUP AT THE WET MARKET, IS WHY, or something.

Stupid conspiracy theorists, you people are such MORONS, do you actually bel— okay, that one’s true too. 

We’ve somehow developed an industry of professional information barriers, dimwitted parasitical human garbage whose sole function in life is to prevent understanding by pasting “disinformation” stickers on things that you’re not supposed to know. 

Resisting the Intellectual Illiteratti

3 hours ago · 39 likes · 18 comments · Ashmedai

The problem now is rice bowls: too many people get paid to do this. It’s not just a social cancer — it’s a career field.

We’ll be ignoring these people for the rest of our lives. But they’ll hold their grip on the mediocre mindsthat occupy government, academia, and the allegedly mainstream media, and their destructive function will persist. They have to be destroyed, and they probably can’t be destroyed. Interesting trajectory implied. “Tell me how this ends.”


© 2023 Chris Bray
548 Market Street PMB 72296, San Francisco

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