Welcome to the Weekend Roundup! – News & Views – 10/16/21

Since Joe Biden’s presidential election victory on November 3, 2020, the American Catholic bishops have contemplated how to react to Catholic politicians like Biden and Nancy Pelosi who support the abortion genocide, with many bishops saying they should be banned from receiving the alleged eternal life-giving Jesus wafer. The bishops met in June and voted to move forward with a process that might ultimately revoke the eligibility of politicians like Biden and Pelosi to receive the Jesus wafer. The upcoming meeting in November will continue the process. Recent actions by Pelosi’s archbishop and pope Francis symbolize the opposing views on this issue within the church hierarchy. Conservative archbishop, Salvatore Cordileone, called upon the Catholics of the San Francisco diocese to pray for Pelosi’s conversion. In contrast, progressive pope Francis warmly welcomed Pelosi on her recent visit to the Vatican.

While the über progressive German Catholic church is in the midst of its own “Synodal Path” initiative to identify and implement reforms, pope Francis has launched a two-year, church-wide synodal initiative. Conservatives fear the process will erode the church’s hierarchical structure and dilute traditional doctrine, which is exactly what Francis has in mind.

The majority of U.S. Roman Catholics do not attend mandatory mass on Sunday and have little knowledge of or interest in the ongoing squabbles between pope Francis and his progressive supporters and church conservatives. In a recent Pew Research poll, 65% of U.S. Catholics said they have not heard of pope Francis’ recent clampdown on the Latin mass and 83% said they have a favorable view of the pope.

The Vatican is not a nation in the sense that we all understand, but rather is the administrative center of the Roman Catholic church. Vatican “City” covers only 110 acres and has only 800 residents. President Ronald Reagan blundered when he assigned the first U.S. ambassador to the Vatican in 1984.

France and Europe were shaken by a recent report that 200,000 French children were sexually abused by Catholic clerics since the 1950s. Pope Francis offered the obligatory apology, but the fact remains that popes and prelates never took concrete steps to address the abuse and cover-up.

As a young child, I enjoyed watching reruns of “The Adventures of Superman” TV series (1952-1958) featuring George Reeves as “The Man of Steel,” Noel Neill as Lois Lane, and Jack Larson as Jimmy Olsen. Reeves was paunchy and the plots were hokey, but there was always a good moral message. The LGBT+ steamroller is leaving no stone unturned.

Welcome to the Weekend Roundup! – News & Views – 10/9/21

The above headline rocked France and Europe this past week, but this is just the tip of the iceberg. Multiply this horror by every Catholic European nation and then by century after century of Catholic clerical authoritarianism.

The German Catholic church’s Synodal Path initiative continues. Progressives will be demanding ordination of women, intercommunion, and the end of mandatory clerical celibacy. With Germans leaving the Catholic church in droves, the hierarchy is desperate to enact people-pleasing reforms.

Cardinal Peter Turkson states abortion genocide-supporter, Joe Biden, should not be denied the Jesus wafer and that communion should be denied only in extreme cases, such as to a “known murderer.” Huh?

Pope Francis issued a formal apology to Mexico for the Roman Catholic church’s role in Spain’s colonization of that country, which included forced baptisms. Some Spanish politicians took offense to the pope’s apologies.

This past Monday was the feast day of Francis of Assisi, one of Catholicism’s most famous “saints.” It is alleged that Francis had the “stigmata” (wounds of Christ) and regularly levitated. Myths aside, Francis was an ardent animal lover who referred to animals as brothers and sisters in the Lord and often preached sermons to them. Many Catholic parishes invite members to bring their pets to church on Francis’ feast day in order for the priest to bless them. Priests are considered to have divine abilities conferred through their ordination, including the ability to bless inanimate objects and living things.

Ninety-one-year-old Pat Robertson leveraged his position as head of CBN (Christian Broadcasting Network) into that of political broker (founder of Christian Coalition) and candidate for POTUS in 1988. Over the decades, he has made dozens upon dozens of prophecies (“God told me…”) that failed, bringing ridicule upon the Gospel. Credulous souls still send in their checks.

Some bemoaned the Notre Dame conflagaration of 2019 as symbolic of the demise of “Christianity” in France and in Europe. But, as Leonardo De Chirico writes in this article, the genuine Gospel of salvation by God’s grace alone, through faith alone, in Jesus Christ alone was never preached from the pulpit of Notre Dame or any other Roman Catholic church. Which is “worse,” today’s almost completely secularized Europe or the Europe of the past totally dominated by the false gospel of RC-ism?

Welcome to the Weekend Roundup! – News & Views – 10/2/21

Last weekend, we had an article about some remarks pope Francis made while on a recent trip to Slovakia that were critical of conservative Catholics. He had quipped that conservatives had “wanted (him) dead” as an outcome of his July surgery, but it was his remarks about the EWTN (Eternal Word Television Network) conservative Catholic media conglomerate that is critical of progressive pope Francis in some of its reporting and commentary that really roiled conservative Catholics this past week. In his remarks, pope Francis charged that EWTN is in league with the devil: “There is, for example, a large Catholic television channel that has no hesitation in continually speaking ill of the pope. I personally deserve attacks and insults because I am a sinner, but the church does not deserve them. They are the work of the devil. I have also said this to some of them.” I could not have dreamed up this “conservative Catholics vs. the pope” drama six years ago when I began this blog.

Zealous Catholics are protesting the recent release of “Benedetta,” a film depicting lesbianism within an Italian convent in the 17th-century. I’m not recommending that anyone see this film, which I’m sure is salacious beyond measure, but it’s ironic that Catholics take offense to this movie when their religious institution has been overrun by a scandal tsunami of abuse (by priests and nuns) and cover-up for the last twenty years. Catholic convents, seminaries, and rectories have been magnets and incubators of deviancy for centuries. For a very unsalacious examination of scandal within an 19th-century Italian convent, read “The Nuns of Sant’Ambrogio: The True Story of a Convent in Scandal” by historian, Hubert Wolf. See my review, here.

Reports of the abuse and murder of indigenous children at Catholic-run residential schools in Canada go back decades, but the entire country was outraged to the core when hundreds of unmarked graves were discovered in early June. An additional one-thousand unmarked graves were subsequently identified via radar survey. This week, the Canadian bishops finally offered an official apology. Why did it take almost four months? Pope Francis has yet to apologize for the latest chapter in this genocide.

Cardinal Raymond Burke, one of the most outspoken critics of pope Francis within the RCC and a former anti-vaxxer, is out of the hospital, but still recovering from his near-fatal battle with COVID-19.

Last weekend I reported that an altar tabernacle containing Jesus wafers was stolen at a Denver RC church, along with other items. The thief was apprehended and some of the stolen articles were recovered, but not the missing Jesus wafers, causing the Catholic parishioners great sorrow and anguish. Not to worry, Catholic friends! The real Jesus is currently seated on His throne at the right hand of God the Father. What you need to worry about is some day He will return to judge all those who have not accepted Him as Savior by faith alone.

TBN booted these two carnival hucksters from their lineup in an effort to transition to Furtick-style, ultra-cool guys. Who gives these charlatans money?

Welcome to the Weekend Roundup! – News & Views – 9/25/21

The Notre Dame (“Our Lady”) cathedral in Paris, France caught fire back on April 15, 2019 and suffered major damage. Efforts are already underway to rebuild the structure and it’s scheduled to partially reopen in 2024, the same year that Paris hosts the Olympics. The full restoration will take more than a decade and cost over $1 billion dollars. In its entire 850-year history, the genuine Gospel was never once preached within the walls of Notre Dame.

The wafer wars continue as conservative Catholic clerics attempt to block pro-abortion Catholic politicians like Joe Biden and Nancy Pelosi from receiving the Jesus wafer while pope Francis and his progressive allies strongly oppose the wafer police.

While many Catholic churches throughout the Rust Belt are permanently closing their doors due to lack of attendance, this new church being built in Visalia, California will be the largest Catholic church in the country with a seating capacity of 3200. Why so big? The region has a growing Catholic Latino population, but few priests. None of the attendees of the new church, scheduled to open in 2022, will hear the genuine Good News! of salvation by God’s grace alone, through faith alone, in Jesus Christ alone.

Catholics believe their priests turn bread wafers into the actual body, blood, soul, and divinity of Jesus Christ. They genuflect and bow down in reverent worship to the Jesus wafer. Catholics are distraught beyond measure in a case such as this where Jesus wafers were stolen out of an altar tabernacle. For Catholics, it is an unthinkable act of desecration. As God’s Word states, Jesus Christ is currently seated at the right hand of God the Father (Hebrews 10:11-13). There’s no one who can steal Jesus!

Pope Francis had major surgery back in July to remove a 13-inch segment of his large intestine. While visiting Slovakia this month, the 84-year-old Francis quipped to fellow Jesuits that some conservative Catholic prelates and priests were hoping the progressive pope didn’t make it out of surgery. In his talk, Francis also took swipes at the EWTN Catholic media conglomerate that frequently criticizes the pope. We live in unusual times when many conservative Catholic clerics consider the pope to be a near or outright heretic.

Evangelical pastor, theologian, and expert on Roman Catholicism, Leonardo De Chirico, examines the writings of a conservative Catholic who hopes the next pope is NOTHING like Francis. Whether he’s progressive or liberal, the next pope won’t be preaching the genuine Gospel.

In this article, Dr. Leonardo De Chirico speaks about his upcoming book about Catholicism, “Same Words, Different Worlds,” due out on October 21st. Pre-order your copy at Amazon here.

I’m all for everyone getting vaccinated, but I thought it was sadly comical when I heard N.Y. Governor, Kathy Hochul, cite the pope in her argument against religious exemptions. “I’m not aware of a sanctioned religious exemption from any organized religion, in fact, they are encouraging the opposite,” Hochul said. “Everybody from the pope on down is encouraging people to get vaccinated.” From the pope on down? Sheesh!

Welcome to the Weekend Roundup! – News & Views – 9/18/21

Pope Francis’ recent clampdown on the Latin mass continues to draw the ire of conservative and traditionalist Catholics. I became an altar boy while in fifth grade and had to memorize all of the Latin responses for the mass liturgy. When I was in seventh or eighth grade the parish switched over to the “Novus Ordo” English mass liturgy. This article reminded me of the very popular joke told by Catholic children when all masses were said in Latin and phone numbers at the time had word prefixes:

Question: What’s God’s phone number?
Answer: Et cum spirit 2-2-0.

That was a play upon the Latin exchange between priest and congregation at mass:

Priest: Dominus vobiscum (The Lord be with you)
Congregants: Et cum spiritu tuo (And with your spirit)

Funny yet sad because we Catholic children never heard the genuine Gospel of salvation by God’s grace alone, through faith alone, in Jesus Christ alone at mass or at parochial school.

Catholic priest and chaplain of the NYFD, Mychal Judge, was the first recorded casualty of the 9/11 terrorist attack on the World Trade Center. Judge had worked with HIV patients and was open about his homosexuality. Those advancing the LGBT agenda within the RCC are pressing the Vatican to canonize Judge.

It’s interesting how future-pope, cardinal Jorge Bergoglio’s rise in status within the RCC hierarchy was partly the result of the reaction to 9/11.

When I was a young student at a Catholic parochial school back in the 1960s, the nuns regularly held up Ireland as a wonderful Catholic country where people took their religion very seriously. Irish public sentiment turned radically against the church with revelations of widespread abuse at church-run residences for unmarried mothers and their children.

The conflation of faith and nationalism has been an extremely popular paradigm in America ever since the Puritans established the Massachusetts Bay Colony four-hundred years ago.

Back on August 30th, 2020, influential pastor, John MacArthur, of Grace Community Church in Los Angeles declared from the pulpit that “there is no (COVID-19) pandemic.” In the same statement, he told his congregation that public health safety mandates were largely a demonic-orchestrated effort “to shut down churches that preach the gospel.” Use of PPE and social distancing were discouraged at the church and associated ministries. Last December and January, Pastor MacArthur was absent from the pulpit for several weeks. It was announced that MacArthur just needed some rest and was preparing for a conference. On August 29th, 2021, MacArthur admitted to his congregation for the first time that the real reason for his extended absence eight months previous was because he had contracted the COVID-19 virus. That information had been deliberately suppressed in an effort to sustain the “there is no pandemic” paradigm at GCC. Such calculated deception is not praiseworthy.

Back on July 4th, I reported that Joe Burress, my former pastor at Victory Baptist Church in Henrietta, New York was arrested for sexually abusing two children and pled guilty to one charge (see here). On September 2nd, Burress was “sentenced” to six years of sex offender probation. Probation? People are routinely sent to jail/prison for crimes much less serious than the sexual abuse of children.

Welcome to the Weekend Roundup! – News & Views – 9/11/21

Last weekend, we had an article about Jewish rabbis who were upset with pope Francis’ remarks in a recent homily in which he stated that the (Mosaic) Law does not give life. Francis has backpedaled, saying, Oh, you’re fine. The irony of Francis’ initial remarks on the Law is that the RCC teaches its members that they must obey the Ten Commandments (impossible!) in order to merit Heaven. The RCC formally recognized Judaism as a legitimate pathway to salvation at its Second Vatican Council (1962-1965).

It’s wisely said that you can’t legislate morality, but I was pleased to see Texas pass legislation severely restricting abortions in that state.

Above is an interesting article from the Boston Globe, the newspaper that initially broke the pedophile priest and cover-up scandal twenty tears ago. As the article revealingly states, of the hundreds of U.S. bishops who enabled priest predators over the centuries or abused people themselves, “Uncle” Ted McCarrick is the only one to have lost his clerical status.

Troubled entertainer, Britney Spears’ legal battle to liberate herself from conservatorship has been on the television news for several months. Spears, a nominal Baptist, announced she’s now a Roman Catholic. Don’t expect any changes in her über-sexually suggestive stage routines.

I imagine most of the violence directed at Catholic churches is in reaction to Rome’s official refusal to bless same-sex marriages and its reprehensible track record in regards to the priest sexual abuse and cover-up scandal.

Hurricane Ida wreaked havoc from New Orleans to New York City. Climate change is impacting the planet in major ways. Amidst a pandemic surge and challenging manifestations of climate change (rising temperatures, fires, droughts, uptick in hurricanes, rising coastal waters, etc.) the Lord is our immovable Rock.

Welcome to the Weekend Roundup! – News & Views – 9/4/21

The LGBTQ steamroller continues to make inroads into Roman Catholicism. Conservative Catholics have grudgingly given ground to progressive pope Francis’ pragmatic reforms, but this is a line in the sand they will not cross.

Roman Catholics are obligated to attend mass each and every Sunday under threat of eternal damnation. But what to do when a hurricane is barreling down on you? The bishop of Louisiana issued a dispensation allowing Catholics in the state to skip mass last Sunday because of Hurricane Ida without incurring a mortal sin. Only 37% of U.S. Catholics attended mandatory Sunday mass every week prior to the pandemic.

Speaking of mandatory Sunday mass attendance, the pandemic played havoc with the already declining attendance numbers. In-person mass attendance decreased nationwide during the pandemic, from 37% in 2019 to about 30% in June 2021 according to a recent Gallup poll. Catholic priests and prelates assert the alleged soul-saving graces conferred at mass cannot be received while watching via television or streaming.

In a recent homily, pope Francis referred to the writings of the Apostle Paul (Galatian 3:21) that the Law does not give life. Of course, Jewish rabbis took great offense to the pope’s remarks and are asking him to retract his statement. The pope is in an interfaith pickle and must word his response carefully. Since the Second Vatican Council (1962-65), the RCC recognizes Judaism as a legitimate pathway to salvation, contrary to what God’s Word says. We agree with the pope (and God’s Word!) that the Jewish Law does not give life, however, neither does Roman Catholicism’s false gospel of salvation by sacramental grace and merit.

This liberal Catholic priest wrings his hands as the conservative faction of the RCC further aligns with MAGA-ism.

Pope Francis is gradually preparing Catholic clergy and laity for the ordination of women as deacons. This is akin to rearranging the deck chairs on the Titanic. Catholic priests and deacons propagate the RCC’s false gospel of salvation by sacramental grace and merit.

It’s sad to see that evangelicals are strongly associated with pandemic denial and opposition to public heath safety protocols and vaccinations despite these undeniable outbreaks.

Welcome to the Weekend Roundup! – News & Views – 8/28/21

Back in late-July, I first shared the story about the outing of gay priest and high-level USCCB administrator, Jeffrey Burrill, by a conservative Catholic website. At the time, I didn’t foresee the ripple-effect implications. We’ve since learned that MANY other Catholic priests utilize the Grindr gay-hookup app on their smart phones and fear being exposed as well. The takeaway from the scandals of the last twenty years is that the very Catholic priests who exhort their parishioners to merit their salvation (impossible!) are some of the biggest moral failures.

A percentage of conservative American Catholics have bought into the same the-pandemic-is-a-hoax, anti-vax, group-think that’s sadly rife within evangelicalism. They’ll passionately defy progressive pope Francis’ instruction to get vaccinated until they end up in the hospital ICU. While Bergoglio is right about getting vaccinated, he simultaneously propagates Roman Catholicism’s spiritually-deadly false gospel.

Speaking of Catholic anti-vaxxers, prominent conservative cardinal and anti-vaxxer, Raymond Burke, caught the C-19 virus and struggled for his life in an already-overburdened hospital ICU. Burke is now off of the ventilator, but remains hospitalized. I wonder if he’s still anti-vax?

The only remains of the first Roman Catholic church in New York City (and State), the church’s bell, has been put on display. The bell’s peal called unwary Catholics to the anti-Biblical “sacrifice of the mass” and the other particulars of the RCC’s false gospel of salvation by sacramental grace and merit. The object deserves dishonor rather than veneration.

Pope Francis is a progressive anti-doctrinalist when it comes to many Catholic tenets, but he’s in lock-step with Catholic conservatives in his views on the Jesus wafer and Mary worship (aka “veneration”).

According to official Catholic policy, only Roman Catholics with no unconfessed mortal sin on their soul may receive the Jesus wafer, but liberal priests have been inviting non-Catholics to receive the Jesus wafer at funeral and wedding masses for decades.

Catholic priests have been trained to ask probing questions about embarrassing sexual sins of those who come to them for confession, supposedly in order to exact a “good” (thorough) confession. The scandals of the last twenty years exemplify how millions of Catholic children and women were exploited over the centuries by predatory priests, often beginning in the confessional booth.

The terms, “born-again Christian” and “evangelical Christian” have largely lost their meaning.

Welcome to the Weekend Roundup! – News & Views – 8/21/21

Gymnast-extraordinaire, Simone Biles, made headlines by pulling out of events at the recent Tokyo Olympics due to mental strain. Only a handful of American Catholic celebrities wear their religion on their sleeve. That group includes Stephen Colbert, Patricia Heaton, Mark Wahlberg, and Biles. Catholic media sources loved to brag on Biles, noting how she kept a rosary in her gym bag during competitions. But Biles caused a big stir within conservative Catholic circles after the Olympics by joining fellow Catholic, President Joe Bidden, in supporting abortion “rights.” Biles’ book, “Courage to Soar” (2016), was a bestseller at “Christian” bookstores.

Catholic internet sites are still abuzz over the outing of monsignor Jeffrey Burrill. Data illegally obtained from the cell phone of the secretary-general of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops revealed that the priest/administrator visited gay bathhouses and frequently used the “Grindr” gay-hookup app. A conservative Catholic internet site, The Pillar, outed Burrill as part of an offensive against the queer culture within the Roman Catholic clergy.

Catholic conservatives and traditionalists continue to fume over pope Francis’ restriction of the Latin mass via his Traditionis Custodes apostolic letter of July 16th. They will certainly defy the 84-year-old progressive pope and cling to the hope that his successor shares their philosophical bent.

Cardinal Raymond Burke is one of the leaders of Catholic conservatism and an outspoken critic of pope Francis. While he caused harm by discouraging his followers to get vaccinated, he caused even greater harm by propagating Roman Catholicism’s false gospel of salvation by sacramental grace and merit.

I have made a note to eventually read the book mentioned in this article, “Mass Exodus: Catholic Disaffiliation in Britain and America Since Vatican II” by Stephen Bullivant. Unfortunately, the Rochester library system doesn’t have a copy.

Last Saturday was the deadline for filing claims against Roman Catholic dioceses for priest sexual abuse under New York State’s Child Victim Act. Here in Rochester, 475 former victims filed claims against the diocese, while in nearby Buffalo, 924 filed claims against the diocese. That number was double the largest number ever filed in the more than 20 prior diocese bankruptcy cases in the U.S., stretching back to 2004.

Welcome to the post-Weekend Roundup! – News & Views – 8/16/21

Whoops! My weekend was a bit of a whirlwind, so here’s the roundup a couple of days late. Sorry for the delay!

We’re seeing a dramatic surge in Coronavirus/Delta-variant cases, especially in the Bible Belt. Pastors and politicians bizarrely soapbox against “vax and mask fascism,” while hospital ICUs and morgues are simultaneously bursting at the seams. Evangelicals should be at the forefront of the vaccination effort, but instead we are the demographic of greatest resistance and even outright hostility.

The Roman Catholic church has a split personality when it comes to granting religious exemptions from vaccinations. Some bishops say yay to exemptions, others nay.

It’s dramatically ironic to read about a Vatican official warning of “spiritual abuse” within conservative Catholic circles that propagate “clericalism” when the Roman Catholic church in general has spiritually abused billions over the centuries with its false gospel of salvation by sacramental grace and merit.

Most Catholics don’t pay attention to the sordid details of the pedophile priest scandals or to the internecine squabbling between the conservative and progressive factions of Catholic clerics and overzealous laity. If they do attend mandatory Sunday mass, they do their duty and don’t give much thought to their religion until the following Sunday.

The writer of the first article ponders why evangelical churches accommodate divorcees, but do not accommodate practicing homosexuals, when the Bible teaches both are wrong. Well, that’s just bad reasoning. Sins of the past are not comparable to ongoing sin. The LGBT steamroller is relentless. It cannot abide the Bible’s teaching regarding homosexuality.

Hillsong is unraveling. Even without all of the scandal, it’s an aberrant movement focusing on prosperity and emotionalism/religious hysteria.

This newly-constructed, 315 feet-tall statue of Mary in the Philippines typifies Roman Catholic Mariolatry.