Tag Archives: archdiocese portland oregon

VIDEO: Most Rev. Alexander K. Sample’s homily at the Rite of Election Feb. 17, 2013

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Okay. I’m taking another day off to go to his installation in Portland…

Catholic Citizens of Illinois Joins Catholic Media Coalition Boycott of the Annual CCHD Collection

Catholic Citizens of Illinois has once again joined the boycott of the Annual Catholic Campaign for Human Development Collection. The statement of the Catholic Media Coalition is below. After the USCCB announced a review and renewal policy that would improve vetting of grantees, we were hopeful that the CCHD would take a new direction. We have also posted below the Executive Summary of the investigation by American Life League and the partners at Reform CCHD Now which indicate that rather than improvement, the questionable groups that receive grants from the CCHD have actually increased.

CATHOLIC MEDIA COALITION ENDORSES BOYCOTT OF ANNUAL CCHD COLLECTION

For years the Catholic Campaign for Human Development (CCHD) has awarded grants to organizations that work against Catholic teaching, particularly with regard to human life and marriage. Not only have donations from generous Catholics in the pew gone to groups that organize and lobby against Church teaching, but they have indirectly, and even directly, helped to elect liberal politicians who advance evil causes.

In view of the recent devastating report from American Life League and ReformCCHDNow which indicates that the problems continue and have even worsened, the Catholic Media Coaltion endorses a boycott of the annual CCHD collection and urges Catholics to give instead to local organizations that serve the poor. Crisis pregnancy centers, Catholic free clinics and food pantries, Catholic shelters and homes for unwed mothers, organizations that serve the third world through clean water and immunization projects are all worthy alternatives to CCHD.

Despite their assurances to the contrary CCHD continues to funnel a large percentage of donations into community organizing groups and coalitions that are hostile to the faith and undermine the family. That is, certainly, no way to help the poor.

Catholic Citizens of Illinois has once again joined the boycott of the Annual Catholic Campaign for Human Development Collection. The statement of the Catholic Media Coalition is below. After the USCCB announced a review and renewal policy that would improve vetting of grantees, we were hopeful that the CCHD would take a new direction. We have also posted below the Executive Summary of the investigation by American Life League and the partners at Reform CCHD Now which indicate that rather than improvement, the questionable groups that receive grants from the CCHD have actually increased.

Below is the Executive Summary of the 2010-2011 CCHD Grants Report, Frequently Asked Questions Report and the Letter of Dr. William Marshner, the Theologian at Christendom College who reviewed the current grantees.

EXECUTIVE SUMMARY FOR 2010 – 2011 CCHD GRANTS REPORT

Background

For a number of years, there has been concern with the grants that CCHD distributes. There have been specific complaints that a significant portion of the grants have been given to organizations working in direct contradiction to Church teaching.

In 2009, American Life League joined with several other concerned organizations to form the Reform CCHD Now Coalition. In March of 2010, the coalition sent a report on CCHD to each bishop, showing that, in 2009-2010, 51 out of 237 groups receiving CCHD funding either directly or through coalition membership promoted abortion, birth control, homosexuality, and/or Marxism. Thus, 21% of the groups funded by CCHD were involved in such work.

As a result of this activity, CCHD conducted an internal effort to revamp its grant process and ensure that all grantees adhered to strict guidelines. The results were published in a CCHD Renewal Document.

2010-2011 Grantees

In January, 2011, CCHD published its list of 2010-2011 grantees. At that time, American Life League reviewed the list and was disappointed to see that many of the offending organizations were still on the list and, in fact, others have been added.

The attached report documents that, of the 218 organizations funded by CCHD, 14 are directly involved in activities contrary to Church teaching and 40 are actively involved in coalitions with such activities. Thus, 54 groups (24%) funded by CCHD are involved in anti-Catholic work.

The number, and percentage, of offending organizations has actually INCREASED in the last year -from 51 to 54 groups and from 21% to 24%.

These 54 organizations received a total of $1,863,000 of the $7,608,000 distributed in CCHD grants in 2010-2011.

Frequently Asked Questions

1) What is the primary purpose of Reform CCHD Now’s (RCN) 2010-2011 CCHD Grants Report?

The primary purpose of the Grants Report is to assist the bishops in maintaining the Catholic identity of the CCHD. RCN supported the USCCB’s effort to strengthen CCHD’s grant guidelines through the review and renewal process. RCN’s 2010-2011 Grants Report is an evaluation of the CCHD’s grantees applying the Review and Renewalguidelines adopted by CCHD after last year’s report.

2) Is the information in this report just based on “unverified web-based information”?

The researchers used Open Source Analysis, a methodology of tools and techniques promulgated by the U.S. Director of National Intelligence (DNI), the Department of Defense (DOD), and the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO). This research methodology is also widely practiced in investigative journalism and commercial competitive intelligence.

These tools and techniques require the application of rigorous fact checking, source reliability and credibility scoring, and cross referencing with other independent sources for verification. CCHD’s dismissal of this methodology as “unverified web-based information” indicates a refusal to accept the serious nature and reliability of this research.

For more information regarding the reliability of open source analysis seehttp://www.fusion2004.foi.se/papers/IF04-1172.pdf.

3) Was this report discussed with CCHD staff prior to release?

Yes, in April 2011. The 2010-2011 CCHD Grants Report was hand delivered to the executive director of the CCHD and the findings regarding each individual grantee was discussed. Similar additional meetings with USCCB staff took place in the six months prior to the public release in October.

CCHD’s “Response to Recent Attacks on CCHD,” claims “While some progress was made in these sessions, they usually ended with ALL disagreeing with the CCHD mission as set forth by the bishops and CCHD disagreeing with ALL’s efforts to accuse groups of violating CCHD guidelines based on web searches and without any contact with the groups or dioceses.”

1. ALL made clear that it has never disagreed with “the CCHD mission as set forth by the bishops.” ALL is only concerned with the funding of organizations whose actions, agendas, and ideologies are antithetical to Catholic moral and social teaching: advancing abortion, homosexuality, birth control, and Marxism contrary to the CCHD mission as set forth by the bishops.

2. The information contained in the report is factual. To date, CCHD staff does not dispute the facts but disagrees with ALL’s understanding of them.

4) Was this report discussed with bishops prior to release?

Yes. The Grants Report was provided to the head of the CCHD subcommittee in March 2011 and to the president of the USCCB in July 2011. The Grants Report was then sent to the entire body of U.S. bishops in September 2011.

5) Is the information in the 2010-2011 Grants Report old or recycled “charges”?

Thirty-five of the 55 grantees (63 percent) that violate CCHD Review and Renewal guidelines profiled in this year’s report were not in last year’s report. New information on the grantees from last year is also included in the report. The CCHD claim that “These are not new accusations, but a repackaging of past charges” is accurate only in that 20 grantees which were on last year’s report are again profiled this year because funding them continues to violate grant guidelines and Catholic moral teaching.

6) Has the CCHD refuted the findings and evidence outlined in the 2010-2011 report?

In the CCHD’s “Response to Recent Attacks on CCHD” document, CCHD offers no specific response to any evidence contained in the full report. The response claims, “They [ALL] rely almost exclusively on unverified web-based information and primarily on Internet sites of organizations that are NOT funded by CCHD.”

As was addressed in the question on methodology [FAQ #2], this statement is not accurate.

1. Primary Sources: Information that an organization posts on its own website is a primary source, i.e. an organization’s own statement of its actions, ideologies, and agendas. In essence, it is the official public face of that organization.

For example, the Intercommunity Justice and Peace Center (page 78 of the report) listed its friends and colleagues as follows:

National Organization for Women, Equality Cincinnati, International Socialist Organization, and P-FLAG: Parents, Friends and Families of Lesbians and Gays.

IJPC promoted these organizations that advocate for abortion, same-sex marriage, and/or Marxism. This information is not unverified, nor was it found on some other website. This is irrefutable. (IJPC has since updated its web site but the screen capture is within the report.)

2. Secondary Sources: Information collected from other websites, media outlets, and documents related to CCHD grantee activities include press releases, official grant reports, annual reports, program guides, event announcements, voting guides, and other such sources. Such documents do not constitute “unverified web-based information,” but are indeed standard sources used both in research and legal proceedings.

The veracity of these materials is deemed to be highly reliable because they are not based upon rumor or hearsay, are subject to public scrutiny, and are official reports from various organizations regarding the activities of themselves and their participants and members.

7) What are the findings regarding coalition memberships of CCHD grantees?

The CCHD guideline very clearly states, “CCHD will not fund groups that are members of coalitions which have as their organizational purpose or coalition agenda, positions or actions that contradict fundamental Catholic moral and social teaching.”

The report details dozens of grantees with coalition memberships that defy Review and Renewal grant guidelines. All information provided was cross-referenced and verified from a variety of independent and primary sources. Attributing all these violations to rogue employees and errors of membership does not seem plausible.

8)Has the report been reviewed by a moral theologian?

Yes. The report was thoroughly reviewed and analyzed by Dr. William Marshner, professor of theology at Christendom College. Click here to read Dr. Marshner’s findings regarding the moral validity of the report.

Mr. Paul Rondeau, Executive Director

American Life League

Sir:

Last week, you expressed the wish that a moral theologian review your “Investigative Report on the Catholic Campaign for Human Development’s Grants for the Year 2010-2011,” prepared this July; and I volunteered to do so. My academic credentials and publications are available for inspection on the website of Christendom College, where I have taught for over 30 years. I should confess at the outset that, before turning to the academic life, I worked for several years in journalism and was published in periodicals distinctly critical of what many churchmen accepted as “renewal” in the decade after the close of Vatican II. Since then, I have come to accept the pastoral wisdom of the Church’s “preferential option for the poor,” of which the CCHD is a striking expression. I therefore undertake this review with sincere personal sympathy for the Campaign and sincere respect for its guiding principles.

As you say on p. 3 of your well-organized Report, it is CCHD policy that “no grantee may participate in or promote activities that contradict the moral and social teachings of the Church.” The moral basis for this policy is the fact that funding an organization is practical willing (as opposed to just wishing) that it succeed in what it regularly does. Hence the funding of an organization is formal cooperation in what it regularly does.

But in Catholic moral theology, it is never licit to cooperate formally in an immoral project. Hence a CCHD grantee must not do or promote, as a regular part of its work, anything evaluated by Catholic doctrine as immoral. Thus the CCHD policy is morally sound. But its implementation is another story. Your Report has documented at least 11 cases which, in my judgment, are cases in which prima facie the grantee has done or promoted an immoral activity.

These cases are:

Centro Campesino (granted $35 K), which distributes condoms, as CCHD now admits; it claims to have defunded the group, but evidence for this correct decision is not yet forthcoming; the bishops are owed an explanation of what exactly has been done;

Somos un Pueblo Unido (granted $45 K), which trains immigrant women to advocate “reproductive justice” (i.e. contraception and abortion) and which took from other sources at least two grants to do so; CCHD has yet to explain its lack of response to this information;

NY City AIDS Housing Network (granted $30 K) which is listed on an NYC government website as a place to get condoms; CCHD has yet to explain its lack of response;

Southwest Organizing Project (granted $ 45 K); which is involved in the Elev8 sex-ed program, which distributes condoms and IUDs and refers for abortions at Marquette Middle School in Chicago; CCHD was informed of this problem by its own regional director, Mr. Rey Flores; to date, CCHD has explained neither its lack of response nor its termination of Mr. Flores;

Desis Rising Up and Moving (granted $ 35 K), which advocates and participates in groups advocating sexual “liberation” and abortion;n Michigan Interfaith Voice, A.K.A. Gamaliel of Michigan (granted $ 25 K), which has taken grants from the pro-abortion and pro-homosexual Arcus Foundation to advance Lesbian-Gay-Bisexual and Transsexual (LGBT) rights, which include a “right” to be legally “married”;

Michigan Organizing Project (granted $40 K), which has taken grants from the Arcus Foundation for the same purpose in 2007-2009 and in 2011;

Coalition LA (granted $45 K), which produced a voters’ guide favoring same-sex marriage and telling people to vote NO on the ballot-measure to repeal it; the issue here is not just how the state will treat homosexual persons but whether state law will abandon the meaning of the word ‘marriage’, contrary to Catholic doctrine;

Women’s Community Revitalization Project ($40 K), which sponsored a pro-abortion voter’s guide in Pennsylvania and took money from a feminist, pro-abortion organization called Women’s Way; CCHD was informed of this problem in 2009 but re-funded the group in 2010; since the bishops of PA have played an historic role in the pro-life cause, they are certainly owed a specific explanation of this payment to their declared enemy;

Philadelphia Unemployment Project (given $25 K), which, despite its good work toward issues of workers’ compensation, sponsored the same kind of pro-abortion voter’s guide; in a state as heavily Catholic and Democratic as Pennsylvania, it passes belief that the Church cannot find a pro-labor organization that keeps fully clear of the culture of death;

Restaurant Opportunities Center of NY (given $40 K), which produced “guidelines” telling businesses to make questionable accommodations to LGBT preferences, including permission to cross-dress during work-hours and to choose whichever lavatory suited the worker’s subjective preference.

In every one of these cases, the grantee has behaved in such a way that continued funding puts the Church in a position of formal cooperation (or in the apparent and proximate danger of formal cooperation) with moral evil. The problems with United Workers Association, Intercommunity Justice and Peace Center, and Georgia Latino Alliance for Human Rights are addressed below in conjunction with organizations cited in the coalitions category of the Report.

Your Report also documents many cases which pose a lesser but still serious problem, namely, that of unwise material cooperation. These are cases in which a CCHD grantee has affiliated with (or become a member of) some broader organization (hereafter: umbrella group) which sponsors, advocates, etc., actions and positions of which the Church cannot approve. With commendable clarity about this problem, CCHD policy reads as follows: “CCHD will not fund groups that are members of coalitions which have as their organizational purpose or coalition agenda, positions or actions that contradict fundamental Catholic moral and social teaching.”

Again, the policy is correct and seems straightforward, but its implementation is problematic. You list 13 umbrella groups; given your documentation of what appears on the websites maintained by these groups, it is prima facie the case that CCHD grantees belonging to them violate the policy just stated. They ought to be defunded, and yet they are not.

I see only two ways to explain this situation. Either the policy is not really adhered to, or else its wording is a work of the lawyer’s art, in which ‘organizational purpose or coalition agenda’ is a technical expression meant to exonerate umbrella groups whose immoral activity is not their sole or primary public purpose. In that case, the policy is too tightly drafted, in my judgment. It fails to secure the moral good for whose sake one avoids material cooperation with evil wherever possible: the moral good of giving no appearance of evil.

You also provided for my review some recent correspondence of yours with the Campaign. It is good to see that a dialogue has been begun. Still, I cannot be satisfied with CCHD’s blanket dismissal of much of your Report, on the ground that your information is taken from websites.

Everyone knows that websites can be in error or out of date. But why would a grantee or umbrella group post and maintain on its own website false or obsolete information? To say the least, one needs to see specific explanations. Perhaps providing such explanation would require man-hours of work to which the CCHD does not think ALL, as an outside group, is entitled. But the bishops of the United States are most certainly entitled.

With hope that these reflections may be of use to you and to the Church, I am

Yours in Christ,

W. H. Marshner,

Professor of Theology

Christendom College

[YouTube/Pics] One Spirit ~ One Call Protest: Mass boycott and public protest within the Archdiocese of Portland, Oregon, 9.26.10

[PICTURED/OREGONLIVE]: Jane Rickenbaugh practices sacred dance prior to Sunday’s boycott of Holy Mass and public protest in downtown Portland, Oregon.]

Ashtoreth Rising: Medieval circle dances to some mythical ancient pole goddess won’t “magickly” empower confused laity. It will, however, help in furthering empower ‘the spirit of disobedience’ guiding the women priest movement into grave sin and self-excommunications. Video and Pics follow…

 

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Archbsp. Calls Boycott: ‘Cancel subscriptions to Oregonian…’

First in nation… Response to media “Catholic Bashing”

 

Oregon Catholic Population:

12.1%  432,170

To Cancel Subscription Now:  Contact The Oregonian Customer Service Department By Phone, Call 503-221-8240 OR 1-800-452-1420, or by e-mail, homedelivery@oregonian.com

On the last day of March, Archbishop John Vlazny published a letter for the faithful encouraging them to give serious consideration to canceling their subscriptions to the Oregonian newspaper. His words come in response to the Oregonian’s publishing inflammatory and egregiously ignorant editorials, articles, and cartoons about the Church. His complaints are directed toward the secular media and the Oregonian in particular. In addition, he complains about the the lack of taste the publication has shown during our holiest season and the hostility it has supported in its editorials. Archbishop Vlazny goes on to reaffirm the ongoing efforts on the part of the Church, in particular, the Archdiocese of Portland, to seek out the protection of our children. Reflecting on the most effective way to reconcile with victims and the relentless bashing of the media, he writes:

Archdiocese of Portland, Oregon:

Statement from Archbishop John G. Vlazny March 31, 2010

It did not take long for me on the morning of March 31 to cancel my subscription to the Oregonian. This was not the first time I had contemplated such a move. When the “Catholic bashing” was principally local, I thought this was something I simply had to endure along with the rest of you. Why? The jury of public opinion seemed to conclude that the church deserved such punishment because it was no better than anyone else in handling the problem of child sexual abuse. But I was always suspicious that there was more behind all the attention given to our plight by the secular media.

Let me be specific about my complaints. In the column on March 29 by syndicated columnist, E.J. Dionne Jr., towards the end of his clever attempt to ridicule the Vatican, we find this bold assertion: “The church needs to cast aside the lawyers, the PR specialists and its own worst instincts…” If that’s not bad enough, try this: “The church will have to show not only that it has learned from the scandal, but also that it’s truly willing to transform itself.” Now you tell me, when you are served with a lawsuit for millions of dollars, is it malicious to seek a lawyer’s help? PR specialists? Dream on. As for “transformation”, ask anyone who works for the church or pays attention to church activities about all the efforts at victim assistance and child protection which have been incorporated into church policies both here and elsewhere.

Then on March 30 there was the unconscionable cartoon on the editorial page which unfairly belittled our Holy Father, Pope Benedict XVI. It was a portrayal dripping with hostility, an attack against our high priest, our universal pastor, our faithful teacher, the one person who, in the eyes of the world, symbolizes all that we are and do as Catholics. I was insulted and I hope you were too. People called wondering what I would say or do. I’m grateful for the prod. Can you imagine the reaction people of other faiths or persuasions would have if their leadership were so publicly scorned? The Oregonian wouldn’t dare publish something so ugly about the Dalai Lama. Nor should they.

The last straw came on March 31. On the editorial page again, this time in the form of a prominent editorial, the editors arrogantly scolded the church for its past failures in handling this matter of child sexual abuse and, in an insulting and unfair attack, chose this most holy time of the year, during our church’s Year of the Priest, to connect the practice of celibacy among our clergy with the problem of child sexual abuse, when everyone knows that most abusers by far are married persons! Is every single person now under a cloud of suspicion? Or only single Catholic priests? If only the latter, don’t you wonder why?

For more than ten years as Archbishop of Portland, in one way or another, I have pondered these challenges and perhaps taken them more seriously than they merited.

But I knew that reconciliation and healing among those aggrieved would only be possible if we who are the church were truly repentant and serious about doing better. But the media could never be satisfied. Why? It’s a trick as old as the human race. “When you don’t like the message, destroy the messenger.” The Catholic Church, in exercising her prophetic role and responsibility, is sometimes a very lonely speaker when addressing reasonable solutions to problematic realities like abortion, devaluing marriage and family life, injustices in the economy which lead to unabated poverty demeaning the sacredness of human sexuality and the place of religion in the public forum.

The Oregonian is most likely no more guilty than its counterparts in other communities, but that’s the newspaper for most of us in Portland and other folks in western Oregon who like a paper with a “big city” feel. But the triduum of hostility, arrogance and ridicule that greeted readers during the early days of Holy Week, at the expense of the Catholic Church, is simply not tolerable and should not be condoned without some form of protest. The editors, of course, hold all the cards, so what to do? I canceled my subscription and urge others to do the same. Something will be missing while I sip my morning coffee, but with less time for breakfast, maybe I can jog a bit farther and eat a bit less. There’s inevitably something good that can be discovered in most unpleasant situations.

My friends, we Catholics are not perfect, but we are deserving of human respect. I had thought I should delay making assertions like these until later. Well, later arrived this morning with the last issue of the Oregonian that will be delivered to my home in the foreseeable future.

To Cancel Subscription:  Contact The Oregonian Customer Service Department By Phone, Call 503-221-8240 OR 1-800-452-1420, or by e-mail, homedelivery@oregonian.com

Archdiocese of Portland, Oregon, 2838 E. Burnside Street, Portland, Oregon 97214-1895 503/234-5334 Fax 503/234-2545

HT/St Anne Catholic Church

WRITE YOUR BISHOP TOO — (Your State Stats)

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Two Excommunicated in Canada, Two More To Follow? …Archdiocese of Portland Oregon Next

               You won’t find it in your local newspaper or anywhere on the internet, but reliable sources tell me the Zion Train is coming our way here in the Archdiocese of Portland Oregon on Saturday, June 7th, 2008. That is, Zion United Church of Christ in Gresham is offering its worship space to misguided Catholics assisting them in committing the canon crime of self-ordination in direct opposition to Catholic faith and tradition.

Last Thursday, in Victoria, British Columbia, James Lauder and Monica Kilburn-Smith (left) hopped the soul train to nowhere up in Canada and were ordained priests by the dissident group Roman Catholic Women Priests. The trouble is, that very same week the Congregation for the  Doctrine of Faith decreed “absolutely and universally” those who do so, along with the presiding Bishop, self-excommunicate themselves–Latae sententiae.

Last Year’s Ramblin’ Wreck…

               In 2007 Toni Tortorilla (right) mocked church teaching, sacred authority and the presence of Christ within the Sacrament of Holy Orders here in the Archdiocese of Portland by her consecration, and next Saturday her lesbian partner Ruth Boeski will, (at least in her own mind), also join her in the priesthood along with another woman who will become a deacon.

               Last year, Archbishop Vlasny denounced the phony ordinations after the fact some days later, along with rebuking the offending church who offered their premises for the protestant service. Some folks have perceived that our Shepherd acted too slowly and without enough force, but to be fair it seems the mode of operation of R.C.W.P./C.T.A. is intentionally designed to thwart Bishop’s from acting within their own dioceses until after the damage is done by:

  • Organizing phony consecrations secretly ahead of time with the help of local Call To Action groups
  • Keeping dates and times of events from Bishop’s within their dioceses in order to prevent them from acting in defending their flocks.
  • Inviting only sympathizers and the press until the ceremonies are complete, and then,
  • Reveling afterward in self-generated publicity–as their websites so clearly reveal.

The Two Cities…

               Interestingly enough, but probably no coincidence, is the fact that Archbishop Vlasny will be consecrating authentic priests at St. Mary’s Cathedral in Portland on the same day, meanwhile, across town R.C.W.P. with the help of Call To Action will be consecrating souls into the dangers associated with hell and everlasting regret.

               Yes, I mention the possibility of hell here, and I do so charitably and without fear. The Catholic Church is needed for eternal salvation and has been established by its Divine Founder as his fount in the world, and these organizations along with Zion United Church of Christ are together promoting and leading souls into dangerous contrary positions concerning the infallible teaching of the fount: the Church has no authority to ordain women as priests.

[Editors note: See: Ordinatio Sacerdotalis here, and I highly recommend the fine article by Christopher Zehnder explaining infallibility in this matter, and why its neither despotic nor patriarchal – just faithful; a perfect title].

The Z Train and False Ecumenism…

                If undermining the spiritual health and destination of Catholic souls is not worrisome enough, the fact that Zion United Church of Christ is in partnership with the Archdiocese of Portland as members of Ecumenical Ministries of Oregon (EMO) is troublesome as well.

                According to Carolyn Wendell, founder of Voice of Catholics Advocating Life, “the Archdiocese of Portland takes no action against these churches to stop these practices and we pay tens of thousands of dollars in membership fees to the Ecumenical Ministries of Oregon.”

               Mrs. Wendell is a Pro Life Activist within the diocese who finds it disturbing that the Respect Life Office goes unfunded while the Office of Peace and Justice–which acts as an free advertising vehicle for Ecumenical Ministries of Oregon–receives ‘just from the Archbishops Appeal alone’ $60,000. She is seeking a just share for pro life activities in the diocese. It’s her hope, as her website notes, that truth and priorities will eventually prevail as more and more Catholics in our diocese realize as I have concerning EMO that: 

In effect, according to the current logic, Catholics in our diocese through our tithing are helping to fund a organization whose members, for the second year in a row, continue to disrespect the faith and tradition of Catholicism in the name of ecumenism. In this case, false ecumenism…

               Perhaps the time has come to reassess our priorities concerning our relationship with Ecumenical Ministries of Oregon, I don’t know, that’s for our Bishop to decide.  But, I do know that this year, anyway, the Z Train will not blindside our Bishop nor the flock he alone is rightfully charged with culling and tending. Note: I ask all my readers to help get the word out on this affront to the Sacrament of Holy Orders.

Welding Pennies on the Track…

               The Z Train has yet to arrive, and I truly hope my sources are wrong… But if not, let everyone gather their pennies and place them on the tracks together in the hope of derailing these continual errors and threats to unity by writing Archbishop Vlasny and respectfully asking that:

  • He confirm, address, and prohibit within our diocese these false consecration(s) scheduled for June 7th.
  • He reaffirm the Congregation for the Doctrine of Faith Decree forbidding the consecration of women to the priesthood.
  • Act to bring before the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops a resolution to declare that the tenets and actions of the Church dissent groups Call To Action and Roman Catholic Women Priests are not reconcilable with Catholic faith and morals, and thereby, are to be dissolved.

Let us also pray for all those above in peril to come to their true sense of faith…

After all, why should we (or they) sit alongside the streams of Babylon weeping in rememberance of Zion, when we know in our hearts the truth that we have been planted alongside the River of Life?  (Psalms 137:1) 

The Way of the Jubilee at Lourdes by Archbishop John Vlazny

Catholic Sentinel 05.23.08              

               It has been 150 years since the Blessed Virgin appeared to St. Bernadette Soubirous at Lourdes. There in southern France the sesquicentennial jubilee is being observed with great joy and solemnity. Eighty-nine pilgrims from the Archdiocese of Portland gathered there on the weekend of April 26-27 to participate in the way of the jubilee. It was a faith-filled and unforgettable experience.              

               We pilgrims left Portland on April 21 and along the way we had many opportunities to honor the Mother of God as we traveled around France. Many churches there are named in honor of Our Lady. We celebrated Mass at the Notre Dame Cathedrals in Rouen and Chartres. We visited Notre Dame Cathedral in Paris. Everyone agreed that the centerpiece of the pilgrimage was our Sunday morning Mass at the Grotto in Lourdes. We were joined by a group of people from Scotland. It was there that Our Lady appeared to St. Bernadette on eighteen different occasions between Feb. 11 and July 16 in the year 1858.

               The Most Rev. Jacques Perrier, the Bishop of Tarbes and Lourdes, tells us that six million people come to Lourdes every year. They come because it is a place where Christians can freely express their faith, where the sick and people with disabilities have priority, where prayer, service and fraternity between people is so evident, where children and young people find special delight and where any person can be open to God.

               We pilgrims from the archdiocese went to Lourdes to pray for healing, reconciliation and peace in our families, in our church and in our world. Like Pope Benedict XVI during his papal visit to the United States in April, we too were especially mindful of all those who were victims of child sexual abuse for too many years in our own church community. We turned to the Lord for the wisdom, compassion and understanding we need to become instruments of healing for all who have been aggrieved.

               Pope John Paul II once said that “Lourdes is the spring where the conscience becomes clear and clear again.” Pope Benedict XVI plans to come to Lourdes in August. There he will meet with the bishops of France as he met with the American bishops in D.C. during his pastoral visit this past April. Both of these remarkable pastors, like all visitors to Lourdes, look upon this world famous shrine as a place of spirituality that helps people live in our world today. As Bishop Perrier observed, the story of Lourdes is written each day by the pilgrims who come here. It is a living story.

               Our Portland pilgrims arrived late on Saturday afternoon, April 26. After supper at our hotel we participated in the nightly torchlight procession during which many languages are used in the praying of the rosary and the singing of the “Ave Maria.” There are six official languages at the sanctuary: French, Italian, Spanish, English, German and Dutch. It was a wonderful preparation for the splendid Sunday with Our Lady which was to follow.

               After Sunday morning Mass at the Grotto, most of our pilgrims participated in “The Jubilee Way.” This is a “mini-pilgrimage” all around the sanctuary which was designed by the people of Lourdes in order to help pilgrims experience the jubilee. Along the way there are four stages at which pilgrims pause to pray and to accept a sticker for their jubilee badges. When all four stickers are received the badge is complete. I shall treasure this jubilee insignia and I know it will be a special reminder for all of those prayerful days in Lourdes.

               The first stage of The Jubilee Way was the parish church where we saw the baptismal font in which St. Bernadette was baptized. We saw a facsimile of Bernadette’s baptismal certificate which had been slightly damaged in a fire. A beautiful reredos invokes the life of Bernadette. We were reminded that even before she became a visionary, she was a Christian. The sticker we received represented the Baptism of an infant.

               The second stage was the “Cachot,” an abandoned prison cell where the Soubirous family lived at the time of the apparitions. Bernadette’s family, her parents and their four children, lived in this single room, a humid and dark place of misery and shame. Our God seems to delight in calling upon the poor to be his special messengers. There we pilgrims received a sticker representing Bernadette.

               The third stage was the road to the Grotto from Bernadette’s home. Before reaching the Grotto we were able to walk by the fountains whose water comes directly from the Grotto. During the day most of the pilgrims washed and drank this water. Some even went to the baths in order to be cleansed spiritually and physically. Every pilgrim received a sticker which represented the Blessed Mother.

               The final stage of the Jubilee Way was the Hospital Oratory where Bernadette made her first Holy Communion on June 3, 1858, in the midst of all the apparitions. It was there that Bernadette met the Sisters of Charity of Nevers, the community which she eventually joined and among whom she lived in Nevers, far removed from Lourdes, until her death on April 16, 1879. There every pilgrim received the sticker representing Holy Communion. The Jubilee Way began in Baptism and ended in the Eucharist and service. Such is the Christian life.

               During her apparitions to Bernadette the Blessed Mother often spoke about the need for contrition and prayers for sinners. She asked Bernadette to look for water. Bernadette did and found a wellspring that was running clear and still does so today. This water is still a beautiful sign of conversion, a sign leading us on the path to joy and reconciliation.

               All of the holy places in Lourdes helped our pilgrims to express and experience their sincere desire for reconciliation. Many took the opportunity to receive the sacrament of Penance. Adoration of the Blessed Sacrament is prominent. There are several places at the shrine where this takes place. Most impressive of all, in my judgment, is the fact that persons with disabilities, physical, mental or psychological, are given a most gracious welcome to the shrine.

               My sisters and brothers from the archdiocese experienced that welcome in late April. It was an experience we shall never forget. I pray that the graces of The Jubilee Way will be shared with all our friends and neighbors now that we are back home. Ave Maria!

Editor Note: Click here to place your prayer(s) within the Holy Mass at the Grotto of Lourdes, France.

Perpetuating Sin

By now, word is out throughout Catholic America concerning the infamous 10:00 am Mass at Most Holy Redeemer in San Francisco, California, this past Sunday, October 7th, wherein two Sisters of Perpetual Indulgence received Holy Communion from Bishop George H. Niederauer. maejoy.jpg

To be fair to the Bishop, it appears from viewing the video that at first he desires only to offer a blessing to the first SPI member approaching him for communion, and perhaps, although its unclear, the Bishop may have even questioned the man concerning the state of his soul before reception.

One thing is clear. There was no such inquiry for the next communicant.

As the lead-in to the video correctly informs us, “the Sisters of Perpetual Indulgence are a group of predominately homosexual men who dress up as caricatures of Catholic Nuns and engage in many activities that openly mock the Catholic Church and her beliefs.”bbc_468x363.jpg

This same group welcomed participates arriving at the Folsom St. Fair which earlier in the week ignited a firestorm of Catholic protest after a sleazy promotional representation of the “Last Supper” was revealed. The Catholic League has since initiated a boycott of the Miller Brewing Company who was co-sponsoring the event.

A False Church and a False Christ

In his revealing article The Truce Of 2005?, Richard John Neuhaus links the unwillingness of Rome in 1968 to discipline both theologians and priests who at that time rejected papal teaching and campaigned publicly against the encyclical Humanae Vitae, with that of today’s open dismissal of the relatively new 2005 instruction on homosexuality and the priesthood.

The uninterrupted link here, is fear on the part of Rome that requiring strict adherence to Church teachings on faith and morals by pastors and theologians may cause schism within the Church. Mr. Neuhaus goes on to contemplate such an schism near the end of his article, suggesting that there would be a distaste for such a open action on the part of Church dissenters–a leftist lefebvrite movement if you will.

For the faithful man, woman, or family in the pew, of course, this concern of the hierarchy to avoid open schism would almost be laughable if not for the fact that created souls and their eternal destinies are involved.

As we all know, there already exists both open and silent rebellion and schism, albeit more dangerous and insidious in nature, because instead of splintering themselves off from Holy Mother Church, these schismatics have decided to remain within her bosom for the openly expressed purpose of creating a false Church and a false Christ under the guise of renewal and false ecumenism.

Correct me if I’m wrong, but, true Catholic renewal consists of a life-long conversion of the soul away from the ways of the world, the flesh and the Devil and involves obedience to both God and the Church in God, as we struggle daily towards holiness.

Right?

How is it then, that in too many ways this false renewal and perpetuation of sin–in clear disobedience to the laws of God within His Church–continues to be presented as a good to the innocent, the ignorant and guilty alike? The innocent, in that they are scandalized, the ignorant, in that they become confused, and the guilty, in that they are denied the authentic path of true conversion leading to divine mercy, forgiveness, and everlasting life.

Yes, I’m sure there are many Catholics angered at the assault upon the Most Holy Eucharist by these two members of SPI, But, let us remember what the worldly do not know concerning Our Lord: we do not doubt the mercy of God, or as Sacred Scripture attests, the rejoicing in heaven for one sinner who repents, and no less so for these two Sisters of Perpetual Indulgence. [They are not the problem.]

Facing Facts North of the Border

Soon CCD classes will resume at our parish, and with them my underlying irritation with our mandatory “safe environment” program will return as well. Yes, I want my childrenst-andrew-catholic-church.jpg safe. No, I don’t agree with introducing such material into the hearts and lives of young children in the days of their innocence. This is the parents duty.

On the other hand, the duty of the hierarchy is to actually create a safe environment. And this they must do by addressing without denial the predominate cause of the sex abuse scandal: homosexual priests and the many structures and organizations found within the Church that supports and perpetuates the acceptance of such unnatural behavior.

Dipping back south for a moment, Bishop Niederauer’s own statement of record reveals the presence of denial found within some quarters of the hierarchy and underlines its reluctance, or fear, to stir the pot and address what’s needed: 

“Also, some who are seriously mistaken have named sexual orientation as the cause of the recent scandal regarding sexual abuse of minors by priests.”

Yet, it remains widely known to all, by means of the Bishops own study, that 80 percent of instances of sexual abuse by priests were perpetrated upon teenage boys and young men…

Yes, I will take my children to CCD in the upcoming weeks. But, I will do so exasperated in the knowledge that following the bankruptcy of this diocese and the 100-million-dollar-plus settlement for Catholic victims of sex crimes in this state, our diocese appears to be unable to confront the reality of the pro homosexual lobby plaguing the Church, nor does it seem willing to discipline those organizations of support made up of priests and laity who themselves continue to defy the sure norms of Catholic faith and morals…

…As evidence by:

  • The invitation and presentation in May of avowed homosexual activist Priest Fr. Schnexnayder from Oakland, California, who was allowed to give a workshop on homosexuality/lesbianism at a Portland parish, despite the common sense pleas of Oregon Catholics to our Bishop to cancel the event.

  •  The presence in Portland and Salem of the Vatican condemned pro gay agenda driven group “Dignity”.

  • The establishment in at least six oregon parishes of the “Dignity” inspired national movement called “The Catholic Coalition of Welcoming Parishes”.

  • The continuance of public scandal by participation of three Catholic parishes in the Queer Pride Parade and program in Portland this summer under the banner of kpq.gif“Keep Portland Queer”. Along with the participation of our three Catholic parishes, other entrants included the above-mentioned “Catholic Coalition of Welcoming Parishes” and, of course, the Portland Chapter of “The Sisters of Perpetual Indulgence…” 

Enough is enough. It’s time for a house cleaning. A true renewal.