Thursday, March 16, 2023

The Knights of Columbus: Footsoldiers in the Auto-Destruction of the Church

Very quick post, which is perhaps super-obvious and a bit a biological man gloating after he beats a biological woman in a swim meet:

This photo about says it all, eh?

A discussion with a Fourth Degree knight regarding the state of the Knights of Columbus (as a fraternal Catholic organization, not as an insurance company) prompted me to poke around for a few minutes.  We were talking about how he never purchased the new (less flamboyant but more cringe-worthy) Fourth Degree outfit, and how many Fourth Degree assemblies and the priests who want the Fourth Degree pomp-and-circumstance have basically given the finger to headquarters and continue to wear the old garb.

Meanwhile, the Knights present themselves as a growing and vibrant organization of courageous men (all hiding behind masks even last fall, years after the start of the COVID drama).  And I found an interesting speech by el Supremo, only a few weeks before the COVID drama began, in which he gives us some chestnuts:

1. An absurd claim:

"A rising tide lifts all boats, and there has been a rising tide since the Second Vatican Council."

2. Disproving his own "rising tide" claim (again, before COVID church lockouts):

"Over the last 50 years, more than 26 million Americans have left the Catholic faith, along with millions more in Canada. In the past several decades alone, baptisms have fallen by more than 40%; sacramental marriages have plummeted by two-thirds; and the percentage of Catholics who attend Mass every week has dropped from more than half to just over 20%. Approximately four out of every 10 “born and raised” Catholics no longer identify as Catholics, and for every person in the United States who converts to the Catholic faith, seven leave"

3. Duh, but whose failure?  Not the hierarchy's, of course.

"My brother Knights, this crisis in our Church is really a crisis of evangelization — or rather, it is a crisis of a failure to evangelize. In a particular way, it is a failure to evangelize the Catholic family and to evangelize within the Catholic family."

4.  Some rebel, but to most rebel after years of good catechesis and devout sacramental practice?  Is it really the parents?  And if it is, is it because of the parents' bad formation?  And is it because it's just boring?  Or because it's effeminate and undemanding of manly characteristics?

"First, large numbers of young adults rebel after years of catechesis and sacramental practice under their parents’ guidance. Many of them find they were only going through the motions with their parents; they never really internalized the Catholic faith and now they find it boring."

5.  What could possibly be contrary to Catholic moral teaching in the Bergolian pontificate?  Oh yeah . . . using air conditioning, owning private property, achieving economic stability, defending anything that the Church taught prior to Paul VI's reign. 

"A second category is made up of Catholics who choose a lifestyle contrary to Catholic moral teaching and leave the Church."

6.  But where to reach out when they aren't at the feminized Mass?  Oh yeah, ...they're sleeping in on Sunday, probably with their girlfriend (or boyfriend):

"We must reach out to meet these men where they are. And when we do, we must show them that they are called to be men of charity, unity and fraternity."

7.  Maybe they'll add or restore something powerful to their program to buck the trend?

"Early in the new year, we will begin offering a new and groundbreaking combined exemplification of our principles of charity, unity and fraternity."

8. Will we call for more effort and more commitment on the part of Catholic men?

"When we ask them why, they tell us three ceremonies are too time-consuming and too difficult to attend. They also tell us that secrecy is unnecessary, and sometimes, it is even an impediment to joining. . . . Today, our current system is too often a stumbling block, not a gateway to membership."

9. Oh, heck, I give up.

For the full speech go here:

Monday, March 06, 2023

Yeah, some folks are still doing it.

 Saw a dude (or maybe it was a woman or more likely a nonbinary sort) wearing a mask alone in a car this weekend, goin' on three years since the BS started.  No, I didn't get this, and he wasn't operating a right-hand drive vehicle--that wouldn't have been SAFE.  This shot is snatched from a google search.

With such absurdity and sheepishness still prevalent, is the counterrevolution or a restoration of some sort possible?  Such things make one doubt.

Thursday, August 04, 2022

FSSP Seminary Appeal? Now? Really?

This evening I checked my mailbox and I found--quite ironically, considering my posts on the ICK Chicago Shrine and on St. Francis de Sales in Benedict MD--an FSSP Seminary Appeal letter.

First question:  Why?  I haven't given anything to any FSSP apostolate in about 10 years.  I haven't given any money to the larger FSSP or attended any FSSP event in at least 13 years.  Other than weddings and funerals, I've probably assisted at only 2 or three 3 Masses celebrated by Fraternity priests in the last 10 years.  You'd think they'd cull deadbeats like me from their mailing lists.  

Second question: what do they think it's worth, after they understate "There was a great deal of uncertainty in the wake of the motu proprio Traditiones Custodes. . . " that ". . . we received the Holy Father's endorsement to continue living out our charism."

Now again, it's not time to blame or gloat or do the "FSSP shouldn'a left Abp. Lefebvre" thing.  That's water under the bridge: Fr. Bisig and friends obviously couldn't accurately see the future in 1988, and of course none of us can change the past.  I respect my old friends at the FSSP chapel in Kansas City and most, if not all, of the Fraternity priests I've met.  They've gone down their own path in good faith, and while maybe they should have had a little more foresight, they're not morally culpable for the situation they're in.

But even if we don't criticize the FSSP for what's happened in the past, it's fair to ask (in reply to their request for donations) what they're going to do in the future.  

Looking only forward, I have to ask what exactly is the "Holy Father's endorsement to continue living out our charism?"    A pardon or commutation of  their death sentence?  A bull the level of Quo Primum? Or merely a brief stay of execution?

Established doctrine is not binding on the present occupant of the Holy See.  Solemn teachings of sainted Popes are not binding on him.  His own solemn pronouncements are not even binding on him.  But an unofficial assurance given in  a private audience is enough to bet your future on?  Really?

Who in the Fraternity's sphere of influence truly believes that the enemy comes for thee, but not for me?

This is one of those points where if I were still a benefactor of the FSSP, I'd want to know more, because supporting a seminary is much like making a contribution to a capital campaign--it's just that your long term investment is in a priest, which is infinitely more important than an investment in bricks and mortar.

My response would be something like this:

Dear Fr. Dorsa, I received your latest funding appeal for the seminary.  I am committed to see Tradition survive this difficult time and I am grateful for the Fraternity's work over the past decades.  But in these days, I must be a good steward of my treasure, and I must know for certain that what I give will be used to support Tradition.  I will make a contribution if I receive a document signed by the North American Provincial that assures me of the following:

    1.  That the Fraternity shall maintain its original charism, the formation of priests and the celebration of the sacraments and customs in existence on or before 1962, unadulterated orthodoxy in Catholic doctrine and morals, and service to the faithful attached to Tradition in all their apostolates in the face of  the enemies of tradition within the hierarchy and without, and without regard to their canonical consequences;

2. That the funds I give shall not be assessed by any diocese or the Holy See, nor shall any part of them be used for any purpose other than for the maintenance and growth of the seminary in its original charism; and

3. That if at any time in the next 20 years, the Fraternity should compromise its original charism or fail continue its mission on the scale it now functions, it shall remit an amount equal to the funds I give now to my alternate beneficiary, St. Thomas Aquinas Seminary, Dillwyn Pennsylvania.

I hope that, considering current affairs, and considering how the charism and mission changed so much in most Catholic institutes and orders in the late 20th century, you appreciate the need for your benefactors to confirm your institute's stability and its true commitment to tradition. 

Assuring you of our prayers,

KC Curmudgeon



Further to my point, from Fr Cusick

 This is another reference point for the issues below:

The Death of a Parish, by Fr. Kevin Cusick 

Three key quotes:

" As of September 21, Catholics in the Archdiocese of Washington, D.C., who prefer the Traditional Latin Mass (TLM) will be herded like prisoners of war into three officially designated camps. This while Pope Francis parades through Canada on an official apology tour for the Church’s role in doing virtually the same thing to the children of indigenous peoples in the residential schools."

"As a result of being declared off limits for offering the TLM, my parish will be down to 20, perhaps 30, people per Sunday with a weekly collection as low as $400 for a monthly budget of as much as $15,000"

"Our parish just recently completed a project of interior church renovation and decoration with a price tag of over a quarter million dollars. The very people who did the work of beautifying our sacred space cannot now use it for the primary reason for their efforts: giving the Lord the greatest glory through the offering of our spiritual patrimony in the Traditional Latin Mass."

And the ill-fated fundraising website:

Tuesday, August 02, 2022

Chicago and the Institute's Cautionary Tale

Let me begin by saying that I respect the members of the Institute of Christ the King and their faithful. I may be attending Mass elsewhere these days, but I'm still on good terms with the Institute priests I know, and of course with many people at the Kansas City oratory.  I appreciate the value of having people fight for Tradition inside the canonically regular structure of the Church, as well the value for those of us fighting outside the walls.  Or at least I appreciated it and supported it until recent events rendered the present battle unwinnable.

But I'm going to suggest that those who remain in that position learn from the Institute's "double-mugging" in Chicago.  Its nothing for anyone to gloat over--it's horrible--and I post this only as a cautionary tale to those who (like me at one time) have donated or who (unlike me) may in the future donate meaningful amounts of money for capital campaigns and other projects at diocesan TLMs, former Ecclesia Dei communities, or any other religious community that attempts to maintain both Tradition and "regular" canonical status.

From the mid-2000s up to 2015, the Institute raised millions of dollars from their faithful and other benefactors to convert St. Clara church in south-side Chicago into the Shrine of Christ the King.  Exactly how many millions I don't know.  If you know, comment below.  But in October 2015, as it seemed the Shrine was nearing completion, a fire destroyed it.

The Shrine was legally owned by the Archdiocese of Chicago, and the project was commenced under Francis Cardinal George (RIP).  I have no doubt it was undertaken in good faith under a supportive Bishop.  Yet, by the time of the fire, Cardinal George was dead of cancer and the Archdiocese was under the authority of Archbishop Blase Cupich. 

After some months of damage assessment and "what now?" discussions, Cupich and the Institute appear to have struck a deal.  As I gather (from publicly reported information and watercooler talk--not  any inside information from the Institute) Cupich would keep the insurance money--the proceeds representing the millions previously raised by the Institute from its faithful and other supporters, even though the Shrine probably paid those insurance premiums and it had a moral, and perhaps canonical, right to get the proceeds back for their project.  Cupich would in return convey the burned out shell of the Shrine to the Institute, and he could then spend the Shrine's insurance money on Pachamama statutes, diversity coordinators, dinners for Fr. Michael Pfleger and Lori Lightfoot, and other un-Catholic things.

That resolution was celebrated.  The massive surrender of the previous gifts of the benefactors seems to have been swept under the rug, and instead, the relevant parties summoned their Romanitas and exchanged insincere pleasantries with one another, and the Institute boasted that it would now have a secure and stable base in Chicago because they owned their own property, where they could do things their own way, according to their charism.

Or could they?  

The Archdiocese gave them the deed, sure enough.  It was a Quit Claim Deed (Cook County Clerks' Office, Document #1606829039) that had restrictions.  Many of those restrictions were perfectly fine, as they prohibited the property from being used for things sinful or unworthy of a place of Catholic worship.

But then there was this restriction:

"Any activity not listed above which is inconsistent with or contrary to the tenets of the Roman Catholic Church, including canon law, doctrine, moral law or customs, in the sole discretion of the then-sitting Bishop or Archbishop of Chicago."

Since then, it looks like the Institute has raised between $2 million and $4 million dollars for the post-fire restoration.  If you know more precisely, comment below.

All that fundraising has gone to restore a Church that they do indeed own, but in which Cupich can still prohibit the Sacraments under civil property law, even if the priests have the courage to ignore unjust canonical penalties

How much treasure has been stolen by Cupich from the traditional faithful?  How much have other bishops stolen from the traditional faithful?  How much more will be stolen in the next few months?  

In the old days, we pewsitters were expected to pray, pay and obey.  While we're not expected to pray much anymore, the hierarchy still wants us to pay and obey.  

But no!  We have to break with that mindset and we must be good stewards of the treasure we are entrusted with.  That means we must take reasonable steps to ensure that our material support will be used for the good work we intend it to be used for.   This is not the time for putting blind trust in anyone or anything other than Our Lord himself and the communion of the Saints. Every priest, every Bishop and every Pope  (Deo Gratias) will be replaced in time, and whatever personal trust you may have with even the best servant of the Church potentially means nothing once his successor takes control.  Here's a starter list of those steps towards good stewardship:

1.  Structure Regular Giving.  Make sure you're giving regularly in a way that ensures that your gift will be properly used. Between diocesan taxes to pay Chancery bureaucrats and insurance assessments to pay the modernist priests' boy-diddling-bills, it's not unheard of for 20% or 30% or 40% of your regular collection check to be going to the Chancery, not kept by the parish.  Is that what you intend?  Is letting the Chancery have that money really good for the Church in the long run?  
Instead, give in ways that aren't assessed by the diocese.  If you give for a specific  and stated purpose, under canon law (Can. 1300), it must be used for that purpose. So using those "utility" and "maintenance" envelopes or other specific gifts might help keep your donations out of the Chancery's hands (but be sure to ask your pastor/chaplain how it works in your diocese).  Back when I was attending a diocesan-sanctioned Mass that was served by a religious institute, I sent the institute's headquarters a check directly and marked it "to be credited to the account of St. Sebastian's parish, Podunk, Iowa." That meant a reduction in the bill that the institute sent to the chapel for use of their priests--a non-assessable reduction in expenses, rather than assessable income to the chapel.   

2.  Restrict Large Gifts.  Make sure anything large that you give, particularly to a capital campaign, is given with clear written restrictions.  When they ask you to pledge $25,000 or $100,000 for restoration of your chapel, make that pledge with the express restriction something like this

"This gift is to be used only for restoration to St. George's Chapel consistent with the plans shown to the donor in April 2022, and only upon condition that the sacraments are offered thereafter according to the liturgical books in use prior to 1963, and for no other purpose.  If for any reason the sacraments cease to be offered at least weekly according to this restriction at any time prior to the 50th anniversary of this gift, a cash amount equal to the full amount of the gift shall be transferred to the following alternate beneficiary: _________________"

Then fill in the blank with an alternate beneficiary who is both more likely to keep the faith and is particularly odious to the diocesan powers that be.  The nearest stable independent chapel, the local SSPX chapel, or the SSPX generally, may be a good alternate because they, for now, satisfy both criteria.  Like in my example, put a time limit on your restriction because perpetual restrictions are often found to be unenforceable from the start.  Fifty years is good.  The max should be 99 years.

3.Set up Alternate Support Structures.  If you are facing a bad situation (and if you're still in a hierarchically-sanctioned TLM, you are facing a bad situation, because even your good Bishop will eventually be replaced) there's also nothing (other than figuring out legal compliance) to stop you and your fellow faithful from setting up a 501(c)(3) foundation that can accumulate funds, support your chapel with them, and then redirect when the axe-man arrives.  Of course, managing such a fund will create more work, and perhaps some moral pressure, because it's not exactly how the Church should work, but then nothing in the Church is working as it should right now, right?

4.  Protect and Claw Back Committed Gifts to the Extent You Can.  If you are a major benefactor, (a) immediately stop making pledge payments due to the material change in circumstances, at least until you get the assurances described in #2 above,, and (b) talk to a lawyer to discuss what might be done to retroactively protect your previous capital campaign and other major gifts.  It may be tough to get the courts involved due to the religious absention doctrine, but property and money issues are ones that do occasionally get considered.  It may be worthwhile to explore your options.  If you have a friendly bishop, there's a small chance that he'll share your concerns.  If you have a lazy Bishop, there's a good chance that he'll try to figure out something that will avoid trouble and bad press.  If you have a bad Bishop, there's merit to just being a thorn in his side.

5.  Explore Alternatives.  I wrote, deleted, and rewrote this last step, because this post isn't about promoting the SSPX or encouraging everyone to go rogue.  Hopefully its inclusion won't undercut everything I said above.   But seriously, even if you think Abp. LeFebvre was wrong about there being a "state of emergency" in the Church in the 1976 or 1988, you have to ask yourself if he'd be correct now, or what else could happen that would make him correct.  I struggled with this one for a long time.  But ultimately, I decided that if the Barque of Peter is on fire, even though I know it won't sink and I can't abandon it, perhaps the safest place for me to fight the flames is with my family and my material treasure in a lifeboat alongside it, instead of being locked below decks in the brig.  I encourage you "regulars" to at least get to know what your options are for maintaining Tradition even when the worst happens.  Visit with the people in nearby "rogue" chapels  (most of them are kind and reasonable, and no more odd than the people you already know at your sanctioned TLM Masses).  There may be some really strange groups at the fringes, but most independent and SSPX chapels are filled with people just trying to get to heaven, same as you in your sanctioned TLM before it was wiped out.  As Bishops shut down Masses during the 2020 lockdowns, these "lifeboat" chapels flourished, and they're almost all too small and their resources are too limited.  Consider whether your treasure might be safer in one of the "lifeboats," even if you remain to fight as long as possible in the burning ship.

Conclusion.  This may seem easy for me to propose, from my "rogue" vantage point where I don't have to deal with the same politics and attachments.  But I'm not accusing the Institute of acting in bad faith.  They're not the thieves.  They were un-strategic and Pollyanna-ish, to be sure.  Careless victims, but not the bad guys.  

I'm giving suggestions to you "regulars" as someone who spent over 10 years in "canonically regular" TLM chapels, and I understand what the issues are.  Between my time at the local FSSP chapel and my friendships with folks at the local ICK oratory, I have, over the years, given thousands of dollars for  their capital projects, and it's very likely that those thousands of dollars will end up lost--up in smoke, buildings liquidated and spent by future Bishops on Pachamama conferences, and so forth.  My loss will be only in the thousands and paid over time, so it's an inexpensive lesson for me.  But it's heartbreaking to see the tens or hundreds of thousands of dollars given by individual traditional Catholic benefactors, which aggregates to tens or hundreds millions of dollars overall, that will be lost if things continue as they are. 

Friday, August 07, 2020

I don't normally get my news from NPR or NYT, but here it furthers my point

So, if you die with fentanyl AND meth AND cannabis in your system AND you're drunk AND a thug cop's knee is your neck when you die, you're still a COVID death?

(, June 4)

This is not to suggest George Floyd wasn't murdered...intentionally choking someone does trump all the other factors.  But it does show how easy it is to invent the number's we're being fed about Coronavirus.

Tuesday, July 28, 2020

Adherents of the new religion

Thoughts from someone I know very well:

They don special vestments for their rituals.   They stand before a crowd of believers and assure us of their concern for those congregated before them and the community at large.  They tell us what they want us to believe and how we should act, with just a few generalizations and even fewer details about how they arrived at their teachings.  They tell us we must rethink our assumptions about living and our personal priorities.  They don’t stand before us to be questioned, but to pontificate.  When questioned, they invoke their own authority more often than they give us the foundational information that underlies their teaching. 

When one teaching conflicts with another or has no empirical grounding, we’re told it’s a mystery (they say "model" or "theory").  The translation of their sacred texts and catechisms—their doctrine itself—can be subtly altered, and when no longer useful to them, old teachings are either ignored or explained away—even to the point that they mean the opposite of what we were told only a short while before.  When one dares to question the latest pronouncement from the pulpit, they and their true faithful stop their ears, or ostracize him for his questioning—he is a denier-heretic-schismatic-apostate!  Questioners and doubters such as he lack the proper credentials, proper screening, and due admission to the ranks of their clergy, and shall not be permitted to ask such questions! 

You know where I’m going with this.  It’s not an original thought….many people, including CS Lewis, have addressed it before.  I’m not caricaturizing Christianity, or Catholicism in particular, either before or after Vatican II.  I’m writing about the Established Religion of the 21st Century, SCIENCE.  


When SCIENCE is invoked in 95% of conversations (and 99% of media reports), you have to remember that the speaker is not talking about a method of understanding the natural world—a rational process of induction, deduction, hypothesizing, counter-hypothesizing, and verifying or challenging data.  The speaker invoking SCIENCE almost always refers to a religion.  It’s a religion that is jealous of its influence and centralizes power in its clergy.  It actually demands of its adherents MORE faith, and LESS personal study or personal accountability than quaint, superseded religions like orthodox, hierarchical Christianity.

Doubts and contradictions aren’t dissected and refuted; they’re mocked and shouted down, either by the clergy themselves or their acolytes (the media and politicians).

  • Objective scientists wouldn’t confuse correlation and causation (“with COVID” or “from COVID”), and they certainly wouldn’t mandate that peers do so in reporting their data. 
  • Objective scientists would reject test results that can’t distinguish historical from current conditions (so at some point in the patient’s life, she’s had a coronavirus of some sort?).
  • Objective scientists would dismiss (or at least heavily discount) test results that can’t distinguish between the subject of inquiry and similar, but distinct things (does she have a common corona cold, or COVID-19?).  
  • Objective scientists who once told us to expect herd immunity wouldn’t have orchestrated, or even allowed, a change in the narrative from “deaths” to even vaguer “cases” for political reasons, or for the economic benefit of their friends in the pharma industry.  
  • Objective scientists would control for other variables (co-morbidities like COPD, harmful treatments like NYC ventilators, and completely unrelated causes like being choked to death by a thug cop while having 4x the lethal level of Fentanyl in your system) in their conclusions.
  • Objective scientists would evaluate the numbers in context (i.e., “how does COVID compare to typical flu?” or “Given that everybody dies of something, what COVID deaths are really ‘excess deaths?’”). 
  • Objective scientists would look for and take into account secondary consequences of their actions (“how many people have come to harm due to our recommendations, and does that harm outweigh the putative good?”)
  • Objective scientists wouldn’t recommend actions or policy changes based on anecdotes.
  • Objective scientists would make a distinction between hypotheses, theories, and verifiable facts.
  • Objective scientists would be candid and open when they are wrong.

But practitioners and clergy of the religion of SCIENCE?  They either actively violate these rules, or they encourage or permit their media and political acolytes to do them.

And in doing so, they diminish (or eliminate) our respect for them.  Worse, they make it less likely that we will trust them and respond properly when “the big one” comes and we DO need to take them seriously.   Someday, we’ll probably face a very serious pandemic threat.  But at least a large minority of the population, including me, won’t take it seriously, because those who in theory we should be watching have completely unmasked themselves in the last six months. 

Yes, I reject SCIENCE as a religion, but I welcome more rational inquiry based on the scientific method. 

Tuesday, June 18, 2019

Catholic Divorce

It's been several years since I published anything substantive on the blog (insofar as I ever did), and it's been over two years since I've published anything at all.  But the other day someone asked me about the old Cave, and I thought I might see if I could remember the password to unlock it.

Alas, I could not remember it--it had something to do with....hmmm....I forget.  But I did managed to reset the password thanks to upgrades by Google.  And here I am.

I know that no one is reading, but I do find it useful to write from time to time, even to an imaginary audience, just to get a thought processed and out of my mind.  And so, this has been on my mind due to local circumstances.

In order to validly marry, in ordinary circumstances, a Catholic but have vows witnessed by a priest who's been granted faculties by the local ordinary, the bishop.  

No ordinary faculties, no marriage?  Or so they say?  That's the biggest issue I hear with those challenging marriages witnessed by independent or other non-canonically-deputized, non-chancery-stamped priests in reliance on ecclesia supplet in the current crisis of the Church? 

 But let's look at the other side.  Can you say the converse:  "ordinary faculties=valid marriage?"

Of course not.

One must ask if priests who do have regular faculties are capable of witnessing a valid marriage in any case.  What are the odds that YOUR marriage will be upheld if put before a tribunal?

Let's see the annulment scores for Archdiocese of Kansas City in Kansas, for a period even before Papa Jorge "improved" the annulment process:

  • For 2011: 198 marriages annulled, 4 upheld: a 2% validity rate.
  • For 2012: 193 marriages annulled, 3 upheld, a 2% validity rate. 
  • For 2013: 225 marriages annulled, 7 upheld, a 3% validity rate.
  • For 2014: 186 marriages annulled, 0 upheld, a 0% validity rate.
Yet, old Archbishop Joe and his Kansas tribunal have found more valid marriages than Bishops Finn and Johnston in the Diocese of Kansas City-St. Joseph on the Missouri side:

  • For 2011: 107 marriages annulled, 0 upheld: a 0% validity rate.
  • For 2012: 68 marriages annulled, 0 upheld: a 0% validity rate.
  • For 2013: 77 marriages annulled, 0 upheld, a 0% validity rate.
  • For 2014: 72 marriages annulled, 0 upheld, a 0% validity rate.
Kudos to for making at least some of the data available.  It would be nice to have more recent stats (after implementation of the Bergoglian..cough...reforms).  But if publication of those stats isn't now discontinued, they are only available by feeding the beast...i.e., by putting money into the hands of the Canon Law Society of America for a copy of their proceedings.

So yes, I'm aware that some of those annulments in the two Kansas City dioceses are probably for marriages contracted in other dioceses, but really, the vast majority must be local. I'm also aware that "happy" marriages don't come before the tribunal, so the odds may perhaps be somewhat in favor of a finding of nullity.  It's not an unfiltered sample.  And finally, if someone with an obvious "loser" case comes up against an honest priest, they'll probably be told "don't bother filing...either honestly embrace celibacy or honestly embrace sin."

Did I just say "Perhaps somewhat it favor of a finding of nullity?"  Perhaps it wouldn't surprise me if 50%, or 60%, or...heck...even 70% of annulment cases were justified.  Alas, that's the case in some dioceses...let's see...Mobile AL, Nashville TN, Phoenix AZ, Paterson NJ.

But 100% annulments, or darned near it, YEAR after YEAR?  If that ain't a sham, I don't know what is.  How on earth can someone in good conscience feel free to marry based on the finding of such kangaroo courts?  

Well, I guess, conscience is the key for those participating in the scam.  Such is our age of malformed conscience.

But those who do engage in the sham....they've chosen to.  What about the rest of us?
  1. Given that annulments are about as hard to get as chigger bites on a Kansas summer evening, how does someone of genuine faith and a well-formed conscience--someone who DOES have a legitimate basis for an annulment--proceed through the kangaroo courts and look to their judgment with moral certainty?  The illegitimate use of the tribunal sullies the legitimate use as well.  I'm guilty of this myself--when I hear someone is "re"married after an annulment, my presumption is one of doubt.  Not [always] doubt of the individual's good faith, but doubt about the process.  I know that's not fair to the individual.  But it can't be helped.
  2. How does someone of genuine faith and a well-formed conscience who thinks he IS validly married know that is in fact the case?  It seems that even before Papa Jorge's relaxation of the supposedly difficult (cough) process, getting an annulment was an annoyance but a fait accompli around here.  Doesn't the record cast a shadow of moral doubt over all our marriages? Are we all living in sin?
Just reflecting and wondering.  And I'm well aware of the logical gaps in this thinking, which is why I pose these as questions rather than answers.

Tuesday, September 26, 2017

"Today, Lutherans and Catholics have come to acknowledge that more unites than divides us." [Cough]

So the Curmudgeon is back?  Well, yes, for the moment.

I can't bring myself to close the blog down completely, because so many people from old KC Catholic grade schools use it as a defacto place to connect and reminisce (I guess they don't have FaceBook?)

But we've lost the Culture War.  We've lost the battle to regain the structures of the Church for the forseeable future.  So there seems little point in raising hell about everything in Western society or in the larger Church.

However, there's occasionally something more local that's worth noting, and worth raising our vocies on.  The Holy Father doesn't have to deal with you and me (or even that fellow who appears to be Pope, but we can't be 100% sure, given just the publicly-known violations of Universi Dominici Gregis surrounding his ascension).  But hey, what about closer to home?   Abp Joe Naumann in Kansas and the new forgettable Bergolian appointee who appears to have replaced Bishop Finn (but we can't be 100% sure of) in Missouri--these fellows can't stop their ears completely.

And here's a chance to be heard!  Franciscan Heresy is coming to Kansas City on Friday night.  There's a Lutheran/Catholic Celebration of the Reformation.  Abp. Joe and Bp. whats-his-name (the Sacristy card says Jacobus--that's all I remember) are going to cuddle up with some ELCA "bishop" and talk about what unites us rather than divides us.  

It's not bad enough that they're Lutherans, who are going to be affirmed in the Augustinian monk-turned-heresiarch's pernicious errors regarding Justification, Scripture, and the Sacraments.  These are members of the Evangelical Lutheran Church of America.  Now if we were going to "dialogue" with Missouri Synod or Wisconsin Synod Lutherans, that might be something.  Even though they're in damnable error, we can be reasonably certain that they're Christians of a sort.   The ECLA is the home of the left-wing, new age goofballs who change scripture, celebrate sodomy, and make regular donations to National Public Radio.  They're the subsect that you join when you want to be a modern-day habitless nun, or a prancing Jesuit, but your old German grandfather will write you out of your will if you cease to be Lutheran.  They're not serious people.

But then again, who better to "dialogue" with if you're a spineless, faithless post-Vatican II bishop, huh?

So I encourage everyone to show up and do some sidewalk counselling.  Maybe you'll instantly shake just one person out of his syncretic complacency.  Maybe you won''ll just piss someone off.  But hey, that's planting a seed that might grow.  And it's fun to piss off the right sort of person now and then, isn't it?

  Does anyone have a 2-page to 8-page tract explaining why the so-called "Reformation" shouldn't be celebrated?  It would be great to hand it out to people as they came down the sidewalk.   If so, email me, and I'll pay to print a few hundred copies if it's well done.  

Oh, and as for me, I'd be there, but I just found out about this, and it's archery whitetail season in Kansas, and I've already made a solemn promise to take the eldest of the little Curmudgeons out.  I'm not going to let Abp. Naumann's evil mess up my family commitments.  The eldest Curmudgeon will be a factor in my life for a lot longer than the Archbishop (or at least I hope so), so I must keep faith with her.

If you can't go, but you want to call and ask some hard questions of the organizers, here are your (Catholic) contacts:

Fr. Joseph Arsenault  (Ecumenical Officer-KC Kansas archdiocese)

Fr. Paul Turner (Ecumenical Officer-KC Missouri diocese)