Archive for the ‘Church doctrine’ Category

This won’t earn him a lot of friends in Massachusetts:

A Worcester Catholic school has flown the Pride and Black Lives Matters flags for more than a year, but now the Worcester bishop is calling for school leaders to take the flags down.

The Nativity School of Worcester, a Jesuit middle school, started flying the flags in January 2021. But in a statement, Bishop Robert J. McManus said the flags contradict the school’s teachings.

“The flag with the emblem Black Lives Matter has at times been coopted by some factions which also instill broad-brush distrust of police and those entrusted with enforcing our laws. We do not teach that in our schools,” McManus wrote in a statement, adding “And, while we teach that everyone is created in the image and likeness of God, gay pride flags are often used to stand in contrast to consistent Catholic teaching that sacramental marriage is between a man and a woman.”

Of course it’s a Jesuit school and of course they are pushing back and of course the media will go whole hog against the Bishop but he has Christ and the gospel on his side:

Blessed are you when they insult you and persecute you and utter every kind of evil against you (falsely) because of me.

Rejoice and be glad, for your reward will be great in heaven. Thus they persecuted the prophets who were before you.

Matt 5:11,12

Apparently he not only knows his sermon on the mount but he knows his Ezekiel as well

Thus the word of the LORD came to me:

Son of man, speak thus to your countrymen: When I bring the sword against a country, and the people of this country select one of their number to be their watchman, and the watchman, seeing the sword coming against the country, blows the trumpet to warn the people, anyone hearing but not heeding the warning of the trumpet and therefore slain by the sword that comes against him, shall be responsible for his own death. He heard the trumpet blast yet refused to take warning; he is responsible for his own death, for had he taken warning he would have escaped with his life.

But if the watchman sees the sword coming and fails to blow the warning trumpet, so that the sword comes and takes anyone, I will hold the watchman responsible for that person’s death, even though that person is taken because of his own sin.

You, son of man, I have appointed watchman for the house of Israel; when you hear me say anything, you shall warn them for me. If I tell the wicked man that he shall surely die, and you do not speak out to dissuade the wicked man from his way, he (the wicked man) shall die for his guilt, but I will hold you responsible for his death. But if you warn the wicked man, trying to turn him from his way, and he refuses to turn from his way, he shall die for his guilt, but you shall save yourself.

Ezekiel: 33:1-9

You can always tell a churchman who actually believes in God when he takes that line seriously

Pray for the Bishop. He is going to be attacked without mercy.

Today is Ash Wednesday and the Beginning of Lent.

As we enter this Holy Season at a time of tumult and war let us remember today’s first reading at Mass and approach the day with hope:

Even now, says the LORD,
            return to me with your whole heart,
            with fasting, and weeping, and mourning;
Rend your hearts, not your garments,
            and return to the LORD, your God.
For gracious and merciful is he,
            slow to anger, rich in kindness,
            and relenting in punishment.
Perhaps he will again relent
            and leave behind him a blessing,
Offerings and libations
            for the LORD, your God.

Blow the trumpet in Zion!
            proclaim a fast,
            call an assembly;
Gather the people,
            notify the congregation;
Assemble the elders,
            gather the children
            and the infants at the breast;
Let the bridegroom quit his room
            and the bride her chamber.
Between the porch and the altar
            let the priests, the ministers of the LORD, weep,
And say, “Spare, O LORD, your people,
            and make not your heritage a reproach,
            with the nations ruling over them!
Why should they say among the peoples,
            ‘Where is their God?’”

Then the LORD was stirred to concern for his land
            and took pity on his people.

There are many great word in the Old Testament but for my money there are no words more meaningful and more hopeful for all of mankind than these words from the 2nd Chapter of the book of Joel

May we take them to heart

I offer thee Lord Jesus this eighth decade in honor of the Proclamation of the Kingdom of Heaven and I ask of thee through this mystery and through the intercession of thy Holy Mother the ability to see the works of God all around us

The introduction I use when praying the 3rd Mystery of Light of the Rosary

Let me direct you to something from the Original Bill James Baseball Abstract concerning Joe Morgan and pitchouts which never seemed to work on him:

An announcer asked him about it one time—this was years ago and I’m paraphrasing the answer as I remember it–but as I recall he said that somebody would always give it away, and usually you could pick up three or four clues. The pitcher would not throw over to first like he usually would, or he’d look at you a little bit different, or he’d rush the delivery home or the first baseman or second baseman would try to cheat toward the bag. or the catcher would look down at you right before giving the signal or would set himself up a little different so he could get up and throw. He said once you picked up on one thing you would look for the others and you’d see them too. I used to play cards with a guy like that. He’s read your eyes and knew what you had. Drive You Crazy

The Bill James Historical Baseball Abstract 1995 P349

What does that have to do with the price of tea in China? Well Fifty two years ago or so at the Vatican some priest, or Bishop or Cardinal involved with the making of the New Roman Missal for the mass was composing opening prayers for the mass for every single day of the year. Occasionally the same opening prayer would be used on multiple days. Here is the opening prayer that was composed to be used from the Sunday before Ash Wednesday to the Tuesday before the feast:

Grant us oh Lord we pray
that the course of the world
may be directed by your peaceful rule
and that your Church may rejoice
untroubled in her devotion.
Through our Lord Jesus Christ, your son
Who lives and reigns with you in the Unity of the Holy Spirit
One God forever and ever, Amen!

This prayer was said at every Sunday mass yesterday and at every daily mass today and will be prayed at every daily mass tomorrow before Ash Wednesday which the Pope has asked the faithful to be a day of prayer and fasting for peace.

Now to those who have trained themselves to be blind to the works of God in their midst it’s a complete coincidence that a prayer written over five decades ago might be appropriate for the situation today.

But to the faithful who like Joe Morgan could see what was happening around him, it’s yet another example of the providence of God providing man with what they need just when they need it.

And like Joe Morgan once you pick up on this you’ll be surprised at what you see and notice all around you..

This 2nd sunday after Christmas is where we celebrate the coming of the wise men (traditionally Jan 6th also known as “little Christmas” ) who came from the east to see the Christ child.

This Sunday feast also marks the final full week of Christmas under the current calendar. Under the old one the Christmas season ran a full 40 days.

The coming of the wise men is a big deal for several reasons:

  1. The Wise men were not Jews (likely Zoroastrians) yet they saw the star in the east and traveled to Bethlehem to worship the Christ child. As such a trip would be long and arduous this means that other than Mary, Joseph, Elizabeth and Zachariah they were the first people who were aware of the coming of the Lord.
  2. Since such a trip carrying valuables was a time consuming and dangerous prospect the wise men had to be wealthy enough to make such a trip, have security for such a trip and to have the valuable gifts that were given to the Christ child. This flies in the face of many leftist Christians who uniformly attempt to give a Marxist spin on Christianity.
  3. It a notable contrast that these three wise men or kings not only humble themselves before God but follow God’s inspiration to avoid king Herod when heading back home while Herod with the knowledge of Jewish scripture and prophesy instead rebels against God with the slaughter of the innocents in order to circumvent what he sees as a threat to his rule.

So when people try to spin Christianity in general and Christmas in particular remind them of the wise men who confound their agenda but also confirm what is often said, that God works in mysterious ways.