Posts Tagged ‘frank pavone’

Click here for Danger 1: The errors of the Church

Click here for Danger 2: The Sin of Pride

I urge you, brothers, in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, that all of you agree in what you say, and that there be no divisions among you, but that you be united in the same mind and in the same purpose. For it has been reported to me about you, my brothers, by Chloe’s people, that there are rivalries among you.

I mean that each of you is saying, “I belong to  Paul,” or “I belong to Apollos,” or “I belong to Kephas,” or “I belong to Christ.”

Is Christ divided? Was Paul crucified for you? Or were you baptized in the name of Paul?

St. Paul’s 1st Letter to the Corinthians 1:10-13

If there is one thing that you will note if you read the old Testament is that the children of Israel are constantly falling back into a state of idolatry from household Gods to Solomon giving sacrifices to his wife’s Gods to the various high places. No matter how much God asserts himself in doing things for them and saving them when they cry out, Israel again falls back into idolitry.

This is of course not purely a religious state of man but something that crosses all of those lines. All one has to do is look at our culture of sports and celerity and you can see that we constantly erect idols to worship and follow. Just take a look at the Taylor Swift ticket insanity if you don’t believe me.

And of course we see this in various megachurches from our protestant brothers whereby a “bishop” will make an idol of themselves and obtain wealth power and influence.

The real danger of all of these things is that the idol becomes more important that the God to be worshiped. This is in fact one of the great advantages of the Catholic system and hierarchy as it provides a check not just to personalities within the church getting too big for their britches but for any cause to supersede the cause of Christ and salvation which should be the primary goal of any and all in the Church. Lewis warned of this in the Screwtape letters:

Certainly we do not want men to allow their Christianity to flow over into their political life, for the establishment of anything like a really just society would be a major disaster. On the other hand we do want, and want very much, to make men treat Christianity as a means; preferably, of course, as a means to their own advancement, but, failing that, as a means to anything—even to social justice. The thing to do is to get a man at first to value social justice as a thing which the Enemy demands, and then work him on to the stage at which he values Christianity because it may produce social justice. For the Enemy will not be used as a convenience.

CS Lewis The Screwtape Letters #XXIII

I have already heard reports of outraged people saying they are going to other denominations due to this case and as I’ve already noted Frank Pavone has, to his credit already urged people not to go down that road.

Even so there are some who might be holding off again due to idolatry, again following the idol to those folks I’d like to remind them of what I wrote at the very start:

there are priests who have some background because when he was still Fr. Frank Pavone they were aware of the history between himself and the Bishops over him. His willingness to defy edicts from Bishops would not tend to grab sympathy from people who like him have taken a vow of obedience to such authority nor might the final result be a surprise to them.

And if there is one priest who knows the background of all of this it’s Fr. Stephen Imbarado the protest Priest. A tireless foe of Abortion who led the Eucharistic Procession here in Fitchburg before the Planned Parenthood in Fitchburg that our local and state press completely ignored but less that two years later, they were gone. (My videos of those events are all over Rumble) He recently put out a post on facebook on the subject. I’m having trouble embedding the video but you can see it via the link below

If you are even slightly considering dodging the church and the sacraments over this I urge you to watch this video and I urge you alto to take the warning that the folks at Church Militant gave of those who will use this events both to promote schism and to obtain your email for fundraising purposes.

This event is a tool that the enemy will try to use against your soul and let me remind you the enemy that I’m referring to is not the curia in Rome or the left or even Planned Parenthood, it is the only real enemy the Devil whose primary goal is to separate you from Christ and the Church for the purpose of obtaining your soul. He will use any tool toward this end and while I suspect he has a great hatred for Frank Pavone for all he’s done over the decades for the cause of life he will happily hold him up as an idol before you to saying: “See how horrible he is being treated by the church. How can you follow a church like that?”

That’s the danger and the game being played on you, don’t fall for it.

Lt. Barney Greenwald: I’m glad you brought that up, Mr. Paynter, because that’s a very pretty point. You know, I left out one detail in the court martial. It wouldn’t have helped our case any. [to Maryk] Tell me, Steve, after the Yellowstain business, Queeg came to you guys for help and you turned him down, didn’t you?

Lt. Steve Maryk: [hesitant] Yes, we did.

Lt. Barney Greenwald: [to Paynter] You didn’t approve of his conduct as an officer – he wasn’t WORTHY of your loyalty! So you turned on him. You ragged him – you made up songs about him. If you’d given Queeg the loyalty he needed, do you suppose the whole issue would have come up in the typhoon? [to Maryk] You’re an honest man, Steve, I’m asking you. You think it would’ve been necessary for you to take over?

Lt. Steve Maryk: [hesitant] It probably wouldn’t have been necessary.

Lt. Barney Greenwald: There!

Ensign Willie Keith: [horror-stricken] If that’s true, then we *were* guilty.

Lt. Barney Greenwald: Ah, you’re learning, Willie! You’re learning that you don’t work with a captain because you like the way he parts his hair; you work with him because *he’s GOT* the job, or you’re no good! Well, the case is over. You’re all safe. It was like shooting fish in a barrel.

The Caine Mutuny 1954

Go here for Part 1: The Errors of the Church

Mortal sin is a horrible thing and of the mortal sins murder ranks high on the list and abortion is one of the worst types of murder there is.

  • It is the murder of an entirely innocent person.
  • It not only kills the child but all those who would be descended from that child
  • It’s a murder that is done with the consent of the mother and often with the complicity of the father & grandparents

That is what makes it something to be fought and opposed but in terms of a sin deadly to the soul there is one sin that sin is pride.

C.S. Lewis The Screwtape Letters #7

Pride is the sin of the devil, pride is the sin that created hell, pride is the sin where we put ourselves up above God. Pride is the sin that offends the first and greatest commandment. Remember what Christ himself said when asked about the subject:

One of the scribes, when he came forward and heard them disputing and saw how well he had answered them, asked him, “Which is the first of all the commandments?” Jesus replied,

“The first is this: ‘Hear, O Israel! The Lord our God is Lord alone! You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, with all your mind, and with all your strength.’ The second is this: ‘You shall love your neighbor as yourself.’ There is no other commandment greater than these.”

The scribe said to him, “Well said, teacher. You are right in saying, ‘He is One and there is no other than he.’ And ‘to love him with all your heart, with all your understanding, with all your strength, and to love your neighbor as yourself’ is worth more than all burnt offerings and sacrifices.” And when Jesus saw that (he) answered with understanding, he said to him,

“You are not far from the kingdom of God.”

And no one dared to ask him any more questions.

Mark 12:28-34

Note that Jesus put the love of God before the love of neighbor. To fight abortion is a fine and worthy cause but to love God comes before it.

And that’s where the danger to Frank Pavone comes in.

One of the primary vows of a priest or religious is obedience. Obedience to valid authority above him or her. The rule doesn’t say “obedience if the person is smart”, “obedience if the person is holy” it’s obedience.

The church has been around for 2000 years, Over that time we’ve had Popes and Bishops that ran the entire gamut from Saintly, to, mediocre to bad as is normal in any institution. This is also true for Priests, in my lifetime I have been in parishes with good priests, saintly priests, prideful priests and bad priests but the mass was still the mass and the Eucharist still the Eucharist.

Moreover if we want examples of obedience to a seemingly bad decision we can turn not only to the great saints but great saints in living memory. Padre Pio for example had his authority to hear confession and say mass removed from him for years before they were restored. Or consider this exchange between the Lord and St. Faustina when Christ commanded her to request permission for a particular mortification and was refused:

I apologized for taking up Mother’s time and left the room. At that very moment I saw Jesus standing at the kitchen door, and I said to Him. “You commanded me to ask for these mortifications, but Mother Superior will not permit them. Jesus said:

I was here during your conversation with the Superior and know everything. I don’t demand mortification from you, but obedience. By obedience you give great glory to Me and gain merit for yourself.

The Diary of St. Faustina Notebook 1 #28

I will concede that obedience, particularly to a request we might find unjust and when it seemingly impedes a beneficial end is not easy but again it cuts to two critical things

  1. Trust in God
  2. Keeping the priorities in order

CS Lewis put it very well:

Once you have made the World an end, and faith a means you have almost won your man and it makes very little difference what kind of worldly end he is pursuing. Provided that meetings, pamphlets, policies, movements, causes and crusades, matter more to him than prayers and sacraments and charity, he is ours—and the more “religious” (on those terms) the more securely ours. I could show you a pretty cageful down here.

C.S. Lewis The Screwtape Letters #7

Again I don’t know the details or the history concerning the former Fr. Frank Pavone, the Vatican or the individual Bishops he has crossed swords with. I don’t know what is true and what is not and my personal dealings with Fr. Pavone have always been great. He always struck me a priest dedicated to the cause of life.

If he were to ask my advice on the matter, I’d say submit in humility and in prayer, while still working with Priests for life. There is no reason why Mr. Frank Pavone can not advance the cause of life as long as he has God behind him and if God wills that he once again be Father Pavone it will happen.

He has already made one statement in his exchange with the folks at Church Militant on these events which is likely the single most important public statement he could have made.

It’s fair to say that as a priest Fr. Frank Pavone has done a lot to advance life and save souls but In my opinion this statement by Mr. Frank Pavone may do more to save souls that might be in danger than anything else he could do as it directly addresses the third great danger which will be the subject of my final piece in this series.

I’ll continue to pray for him and all involved in the case I suggest you do as well.

Then Jesus spoke to the crowds and to his disciples, saying,

“The scribes and the Pharisees have taken their seat on the chair of Moses. Therefore, do and observe all things whatsoever they tell you, but do not follow their example. For they preach but they do not practice…”

Matthew 23:1-3

Before I begin this series of posts let’s stipulate the following right up front:

The fight against Abortion is just and right and the efforts of Priests for Life in general and the former Father Frank Pavone in particular to oppose abortion and promote life have been to my knowledge a fine and noble undertaking in the best traditions of the Catholic Church and a service to all humanity.

That being said let’s get to the issues at hand.

There is a lot we don’t know about about the Frank Pavone case and the Vatican can take a lot of credit for this. However there are priests who have some background because when he was still Fr. Frank Pavone they were aware of the history between himself and the Bishops over him. His willingness to defy edicts from Bishops would not tend to grab sympathy from people who like him have taken a vow of obedience to such authority nor might the final result be a surprise to them.

But all of this is internal from as one might put it, “inside the club” outside the club this looks very different.

It looks like the Vatican which has over the last few years been very forgiving to those openly flaunting church teachings even to the point of advocating mortal sin while cracking down on the faithful.

As the Vatican letter states Fr. Pavone is a very public figure and creating this image, without explaining to the faithful the background behind it is not only foolish and short sighted, it plays into the hands of every group whose primary goal is to bring down the church, it increases the chance of schism and suggests a double standard for those who follow church teaching on subjects like abortion and those who do not. Given the recent history of the church under this pontiff I suspect very few daily mass Catholic will find such a double standard surprising

The folks at Church Militant put it best, even if all that is alleged by the Vatican is true and correct, and it’s very possible that it is, this was not the way to do things in a media age.

More importantly it illustrates the problem with putting off an issue that was illustrated during the gay pedophilia scandals.

Over and over the church rather than confronting the issue up front when it happened, they punted, transferred and tried to hide the issues. Stalling only made things worse until the scandals exploded much worse then it would have been it they had just been taken care of when they first came up.

If the then Father Pavone was disobeying his bishop back in his days in NY the church would have been better off cracking down at once, punting on the issue and stalling on the issue is one of the reasons why it’s a crisis for the church.

I know and concede that the Vatican by it’s very nature moves slowly and quietly and whenever possibly privately but this is just plain stupid and contrary to the spirit of Christ who when before Annas said:

The high priest questioned Jesus about his disciples and about his doctrine. Jesus answered him,

“I have spoken publicly to the world. I have always taught in a synagogue or in the temple area where all the Jews gather, and in secret I have said nothing. Why ask me? Ask those who heard me what I said to them. They know what I said.”

When he had said this, one of the temple guards standing there struck Jesus and said, “Is this the way you answer the high priest?”

Jesus answered him,

“If I have spoken wrongly, testify to the wrong; but if I have spoken rightly, why do you strike me?”

John 18:19-23

When you have truth on your side, the thing to do is be open. The church should understand that and act accordingly.

Of course there is the possibility that the folks at the top who made this decision DO understand it and are silent because of it. I hope and pray this is not the case. I honestly don’t know, and frankly I suspect most of the people who read this post don’t know either.