Archives for August 2015

Elsewhere: fallibility


To be Catholic is to be in union with the infallible teaching of the Church. “Cafeteria Catholics,” for example and to be blunt, are in schism with the Church and often objectively in a state of mortal sin. Nothing could be more serious.

It is important therefore to know what the Church infallibly teaches and to accept it. That is, to live by her dogma and other doctrines. It is also important to respect her shepherds when they teach on faith and morals. They are experts in these matters and ordained by Christ to His priesthood.

The Church will prevail until the end of time, but she may suffer setbacks in her influence and effectiveness of mission. Some of that is unavoidable in standing for the truth. Other times, she simply shoots herself in the foot. This has been occurring more frequently as the Vatican and our bishops make pronouncements in areas of prudential judgment far beyond their competence – such as in complex science, economics and political areas.

The most recent example is the Vatican’s apparent endorsement of the Iranian nuclear agreement. This is an area in which they are completely unqualified. Actual experts are divided on (but increasingly leaning against) this proposal precisely because it is more likely to lead to nuclear war then prevent it.

This is not an argument about the morality of nuclear or any other war. Catholic social teaching is well developed in this area. It would be appropriate for the Vatican to remind everyone of that teaching and to applaud efforts to avoid war and nuclear war in particular. Unfortunately, they unwisely went far and dangerously beyond that. Again.

In my opinion, this will have absolutely no impact on the debate (thank God). It will only serve to needlessly diminish the Church’s influence.

William Kilpatrick takes a close look at this particular issue for Crisis Magazine:

When Church leaders comment on international events they show a remarkable propensity for explaining those events in more or less the same way that secular liberals do. The flip side of this penchant is a tendency to ignore what their own theological training might tell them about important issues.

Take the recent Vatican endorsement of the Iranian nuclear agreement. After the global powers finally reached a deal, the Vatican wasted no time in praising it. Shortly after the announcement, Vatican spokesman Fr. Federico Lombardi said that the agreement “is viewed in a positive light by the Holy See.” Bishop Oscar Cantu, the head of the U.S. bishops’ Committee on International Justice and Peace, called on Congress to “support these efforts to build bridges that foster peace and greater understanding,” and he warned Congress not to “undermine” the deal. For his part, Cardinal Theodore McCarrick, the former archbishop of Washington, D.C., applauded the deal in an essay for the Washington Post. He opined that we can trust the Iranians because Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei once issued a fatwa that “declared the possession and use of nuclear weapons as incompatible with Islam.”

Coincidentally, both President Obama and Secretary of State John Kerry have also referenced the fatwa as evidence of good faith on the part of the Iranians. According to Obama in September, 2013, “Iran’s supreme leader has issued a fatwa against the development of nuclear weapons.”

The trouble is, the existence of the fabled fatwa is in dispute. Apparently, no one has been able to produce the text. According to a “Fact Checker” article in the Washington Post, the fatwa appears to be no more than an urban legend. However, seeing as the likes of John Kerry believe in it, we could be kinder and call it an “urbane legend” — the kind of thing that ought to be true because sophisticated people say it’s true.

A fatwa against nukes? Although bishops can’t be expected to understand the finer points of uranium enrichment or the technical difficulties of inspecting secret underground sites, they might be expected to have a better grasp on whether or not using nuclear weapons is contrary to the faith of Islam.

Kilpatrick goes on to closely examine and contrast Iranian beliefs to ours. It’s a very good, eye opening piece. Read it all at: Faith-Based Negotiations with Faith-Based Fanatics.

He does not mention it, but another crucial thing to be aware of relating to the alleged fatwa is al-Taqiyya. That is the Islamic word for concealing or disguising one’s beliefs, convictions, ideas, feelings, opinions, and/or strategies. Applied it means that lying to deceive infidels to bring world domination is completely acceptable. This is not hidden, but quite well known.

7 Quick Takes Friday (set #178)

7 Quick Takes Friday

This week: The latest issue of New Evangelists Monthly awaits your perusal. Three more videos have been released of Planned Parenthood peddling baby organs. A good, short video from Christopher Stefanick on the existence of God. An unusual (but good) approach to Christian evangelization from Letters to the Exiles. Spike is in a love triangle, between a Marine and a Capitol Police officer. Wild Bill shares some thoughts about those superior, intelligent atheists. How to use an 8.5 ton excavator to serve a hot dog.

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New Evangelists Monthly

Issue #32, August 2015, of New Evangelists Monthly is ready for your enjoyment! Scores of faithful Catholic bloggers have contributed their very best pieces from July. Contributing authors this month include: Virginia Lieto, Nancy Shuman, Stephen Korsman, Matthew Coffin, Matthew Plese, Birgit Jones, Ellen Gable Hrkach, Barbara Szyszkiewicz, Tracy Smith, Adam Crawford, Jennifer James, Brantly Millegan, Frank Rega, Kathleen S, Connie Rossini, Fr. Chori Jonathin Seraiah, Fr. Vladimir Echalas, Rick Becker, Margaret Felice, Michael Seagriff, Laura Pearl, Jenn Tatum, Nancy Ward, Kathleen Laplante, Christian LeBlanc, Shannon Vandaveer, Melissa Overmyer, George Sipe, Rich Maffeo, Allison Howell, Dn. Scott Dodge, Carolyn Astfalk, Jamie Jo, Allen Hebert, Denise Hunnell, Cindy Hurla, John Schroeder, Robert Collins, Elizabeth Reardon, Paul Roy, Sara Boyle, Rose O’Donnell, Anthony Layne, Sr. Maresa Lilley, Leslie Klinger, Larry Peterson, Roxane Salonen, Tony Agnesi, Bartimaeus Timeo, Lisa Ponchak, Matthew Rose, Molly Oshatz, David Torkington, Christina Sawchuk, Vinny Carr, John Shimek, Shannon Ball, Rick Rice, Fr. Tucker Cordani, Anna Coyne, Brian Gill, Andy McNutt, Fr. Ben Hadrich, Jeff Walker, Larry T, Joe Simmons, Susan Fox, Larry Fox, Dave Wanat, Rita Buettner, Tom Perna, Fr. Richard DeLillio, Amy Parris, Sr. Margaret Obrovac, Sharon Babineau, Justin Soutar, Joseph Shaw, Jessica and Manny Archuleta, Pat and Nicole Padley, Fr. Adrian Danker, Barbara Hosbach, Theresa, Lyn Mettler, Melody Marie, Bethanie Ryan, Julian Barkin, Fr. David Bird, Monica McConkey and Tara Baker.

This monthly “meta-magazine” showcases faithful Catholicism from theology to family life and “everything in between.” Enjoy it now at

Read Now

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Planned Parenthood apparently lives by the adage that a lie told loud enough and often enough will be believed. They, and their liberal political and media backers, are doing just that in the face of an avalanche of undercover videos documenting their baby organ sales.

I previously featured aspect the first two videos (here and here). Here are the next 3. I understand there are plenty more. This is systemic, not lone wolfs acting against policy. The videos are not all edited in some magical manner to make them say anything other than what the PP executives happily said (the full, unedited versions are also available for doubters).

If you are a supporter of these ghouls, do NOT believe what you may have heard about the videos. Watch them yourself. These are human bodily organs, harvested from the human beings PP kills.

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Christopher Stefanick gives some quick proofs for the existence of God:

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The Letters to the Exiles folks take an unusual approach to Christian evangelization. This video is called The Drink for What Ails You:

I like it. It is funny, makes the points well, and does so in a way that can reach people that other approaches do not.

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A Marine combat veteran and a Capitol Police officer both share a special bond with a life-saving friend — a dog named Spike. CBS Evening News has the story:

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I am not completely comfortable with Wild Bill’s approach, but he does make a good point about how impressively smart those elite atheists are. Or so they think.

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A gas station / mini-mart chain in Norway wished to promote their hot dogs. For this, they build one with an 8.5 ton excavator. This is not exactly a piece of “precision equipment.” The operator displays some very impressive skill.

Some random thoughts or bits of information are worthy of sharing but don’t warrant their own full post. This idea was begun by Jennifer Fulwiler and is now continued by Kelly Mantoan. So, some Fridays I too participate when I have accumulated 7 worthy items. Thank you Kelly for hosting this project!

New Evangelists Monthly – August 2015, Issue #32

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