Wednesday 29th March 2017

Recent Articles:

The Pope’s Soundbites

March 29, 2017 Frontpage Comments Off on The Pope’s Soundbites


I have been wondering if liberal Catholics were going to gloat in public over the liberalizing efforts of Pope Francis. So far, they haven’t, as far as I can tell. There may be some chuckling in private among liberal Catholic circles over the dilemma faced by conservative Catholics who have prided themselves on their loyalty to the papacy, now that they find themselves regularly at odds with the Pope’s comments on issues such as homosexuality and global warming. But I haven’t seen much snickering in the open about “conservative cafeteria Catholics.”
At least not in mainstream publications such as America and Commonweal. You will find high praise for Francis’ “compassion” and “openness to change” in these venues, but no “nonna-nonya-nah-hah” smugness. … Continue Reading

Tribute Shows How . . . Michael Novak Developed His Growing Wisdom As He Left The Static Left

March 28, 2017 Frontpage Comments Off on Tribute Shows How . . . Michael Novak Developed His Growing Wisdom As He Left The Static Left


Developing thinking about a moral approach to practicing capitalism was a major contribution by philosopher Michael Novak, who moved from being celebrated on the left to revered by the realistic in a life that ended at age 83 in February.
His website ( described him as “author, philosopher, theologian” at the top of the page. He indeed was those, but also helped thinkers see how economies worked, and why capitalism was better than state systems that seemed to captivate many clerics.
Himself a former seminarian, Novak was a correspondent for the National Catholic Reporter during the Second Vatican Council and wrote the 1964 book The Open Church, which his website describes as applauding “the purposes of Pope John XXIII and his successor, Paul VI — ‘to throw open the windows of the church’.”
At his most notable, he was as prominent in Catholic chatter as Raymond Cardinal Burke is today — although initially on the other side of the religious aisle. … Continue Reading

Radical Left-Wing Social Experiments Are Killing America

March 27, 2017 Frontpage Comments Off on Radical Left-Wing Social Experiments Are Killing America


“Interesting how a 14-year-old girl gets raped by illegal immigrants at Rockville High School and third-wave feminists are silent. Anything to perpetuate the ‘white-patriarchy-is-to-blame-for-all-our-problems’ narrative, right? Don’t talk to me about equality and empowerment, ladies. Your movement is a joke” — Allie Beth Stuckey,

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She is specifically referring to the recent case of two illegal immigrants, ages 18 and 17, who are accused of raping a 14-year-old girl in a Rockville, Md., high school. Because of the illegal status of the perpetrators, radical leftists and their friends in the mainstream fake “news” media refuse to condemn or even report on the case because it puts illegal immigrants in a bad light. This kind of negative publicity about illegal immigrants, of course, goes against the insane politically correct left-wing narrative which is very pro-illegal immigrant.
Stuckey makes a great point about the hypocrisy of today’s fake “third-wave” feminists (who are one of the many tentacles of the radical left-wing, the others being troublemakers like the ACLU, Black Lives Matter, LGBTQ agitators, Muslim and environmental extremists, the Ninth Circuit Court, the Democratic Party, and of course the mainstream fake “news” media). … Continue Reading

Amid Spies’ Smoke And Mirrors . . . What’s The Reality Behind Trump Tying Himself To Ryancare?

March 26, 2017 Frontpage Comments Off on Amid Spies’ Smoke And Mirrors . . . What’s The Reality Behind Trump Tying Himself To Ryancare?


In Washington’s current maelstrom of speculation about who’s spying on whom, the questions go even deeper.
When a victim of spying said “Yes” on the phone, did he really mean “No” but intended to conceal his meaning from possible interception? Or did he really mean “Yes” when he said “Yes,” but hoped to mislead the eavesdropping spy into thinking he actually meant “No”?
Collecting information covertly means not only preparing transcripts but also analyzing them for elusive significance, to extract the pearl within the ugly, resistant shell.
And we’re not even talking about the Neil Gorsuch public hearings for the Supreme Court, where leftist senators hoped to mind-read hidden, evil thoughts into the openly stated ideas of the apparently conservative, well-meaning jurist from Colorado.
mGovernments routinely snoop on each other, even if their diplomats put on cheery faces at garden parties with foes. If spying isn’t the oldest profession, covert action is at least as old as when Cain tried to mislead God that he wasn’t keeping tabs on Abel’s whereabouts. … Continue Reading

Clericalism Continues To Thrive In The Church

March 25, 2017 Frontpage Comments Off on Clericalism Continues To Thrive In The Church

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Pope Francis has condemned clericalism repeatedly, insisting that it goes hand in hand with corruption. Russell Shaw, an expert on the subject, writes that the “illness” of clericalism has been with us for so long “that most of us take it for granted. In fact, we’re clericalists ourselves.”
Just what is this thing called “clericalism,” anyway? In one sense, it’s reminiscent of Justice Potter Stewart’s observation about hard-core pornography: “Perhaps I could never succeed in intelligibly [defining it],” he wrote, “but I know it when I see it” (Jacobellis v. Ohio, 1964).
In that spirit, Pope Francis has seen “clericalism” in the corruption endemic to his native Latin America, as well as in the “rigorism” of his critics who are (to say the least) uncomfortable with his theological ambivalence. … Continue Reading

Will Russiagate Backfire On The Left?

March 24, 2017 Frontpage Comments Off on Will Russiagate Backfire On The Left?


The big losers of the Russian hacking scandal may yet be those who invested all their capital in a script that turned out to be based on a fairy tale.
In the March 20 Intelligence Committee hearings, James Comey did confirm that his FBI has found nothing to support President Trump’s tweet that President Obama ordered him wiretapped. Not unexpected, but undeniably an embarrassment for the tweeter-in-chief.
Yet longer-term damage may have been done to the left. For that hearing showed that its rendering of the campaign of 2016 may be a product of fiction and a fevered imagination.
After eight months investigating the hacking and leaking of the emails of Clinton campaign chief John Podesta and the DNC, there is apparently no evidence yet of Trump collusion with Russia.
Former Director of National Intelligence Gen. James Clapper has said that, as of his departure day, January 20, he had seen no evidence of a Russia-Trump collusion. … Continue Reading

Cynicism And Skepticism

March 23, 2017 Frontpage Comments Off on Cynicism And Skepticism


It is a dilemma that classroom teachers struggle with: How do we promote a healthy skepticism among our students, without encouraging cynicism, when discussing the great issues of the past or current events? We want our students to learn to see through false claims and propaganda, to spot humbug. On the other hand, we do not want for them to assume that everyone is a phony with base motives.
There is, for example, a difference between the argument in favor of United States’ military and economic intervention in Eastern Europe after World War II and that of the Soviet Union.
That said, it cannot be denied that there is a tendency of political leaders and partisans to flip-flop on their principles when it becomes advantageous for them to do so. That is what is meant when we hear people say, “Arguments about process are bogus.” … Continue Reading


March 22, 2017 Frontpage Comments Off on Lutherlust

Flashback 1967

Editor’s Note. This was published in The Wanderer November 9, 1967

By Jerome Docherty, O.S.B

Being a senior citizen I am an Oldster, and therefore just 60 years out of date to the Youngsters. And as for the Council of Trent, well that is just 400 years out of date! It is very strange therefore to me, an Oldster, to see the Youngsters resurrecting Luther who died just 430 years ago! If their only fault were inconsistency one could be tolerant. But their main fault is very grave. Their efforts to re-evaluate and rehabilitate Luther con­stitute a severe judgment and condemnation of all the Popes who dealt with Luther or managed the Council of Trent, of that same Ecumenical Council itself, and of all the contemporary theologians, many of whom were saints.


The Popes, the Council and the theologians are all condemned as lacking the ability to enter into Luther’s mind or rise to the level of his lofty thought. Is not this presumption on the part of men who lack the mental acumen of the Popes, scholars and saints of Luther’s day? These were all learned men, and at the least, masters in-theology, and knew more about Cath­olic theology than Dr. Martin Luther. Many of them were intellectual giants, like Lainez, Salmeron, Peter Canisius, Baronius. Ignorance of this fact may excuse your presumption, but cannot … Continue Reading

Did Obama Spy On Trump?

March 21, 2017 Frontpage Comments Off on Did Obama Spy On Trump?

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The question of whether former President Barack Obama actually spied on President Donald Trump during the 2016 presidential campaign and transition has been tantalizing Washington since President Trump first made the allegation several weeks ago. Since then, three investigations have been launched — one by the FBI, one by the House of Representatives, and one by the Senate. Are the investigators chasing a phantom, or did this actually happen?
Here is the back story.
Obama would not have needed a warrant to authorize surveillance on Trump. Obama was the president and as such enjoyed authority under the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act to order surveillance on any person in America, without suspicion, probable cause or a warrant.
FISA contemplates that the surveillance it authorizes will be for national security purposes, but this is an amorphous phrase and an ambiguous standard that has been the favorite excuse of most modern presidents for extraconstitutional behavior.
In the early 1970s, President Richard Nixon used national security as a pretext to deploying the FBI and CIA to spy on students and even to break in to the office of the psychiatrist of Daniel Ellsberg, one of his tormentors. … Continue Reading

Rape, Abortion, And Domestic Violence

March 21, 2017 Frontpage Comments Off on Rape, Abortion, And Domestic Violence


Years ago when I worked as a volunteer coordinator at a domestic violence shelter, I was still young and more liberal in my views than I am now. It was a demanding job where I witnessed a lot of pain, suffering, and heartache. Thankfully I also saw women and children survive and move on to a better life in a few cases.
Some of the outreach and networking we did was with rape victim advocate organizations. We would sometimes work with the same women and families who had sadly also experienced some form of sexual assault.
The one thing that bothers me to this day is how the domestic violence and rape victim advocates and the organizations dedicated to help these women and families are staunch pro-abortion advocates.
One of my tasks was to train volunteers how to appropriately answer the emergency calls we received from women seeking shelter. Part of the intake interview, depending on whether the woman was safe at that moment or not, took place over the phone. The main interview to assess the woman’s and her children’s needs took place once they had safely arrived at the shelter. … Continue Reading

Raymond Desouza . . . Shield of Faith PART 4

Chris Manion . . . European Union's Demographic Whimper; Vatican Hosts The Enemy; Can Rogue Federal Judiciary Be Controlled?


Catholic advocates critical of Trump’s order to review Clean Power Plan

WASHINGTON (CNS) — Catholic environmental advocates decried President Donald Trump’s executive order that would begin a review of his predecessor’s Clean Power Plan, which set targets to reduce greenhouse gas emissions from coal-fired power plants. The advocates said that reversing…Continue Reading

Mexican bishop: faithful have a duty to oppose abortion, protect life

The Catholic faithful have “a serious, human, and societal responsibility” to protect human life, a spokesman for the Mexican hierarchy said in a message for the national Day for Life. Bishop Francisco Javier Chavolla Ramos of Toluca, the chairman of…Continue Reading

Canon lawyers and theologians to hold conference on ‘deposing the pope’

PARIS, March 17, 2017 (LifeSiteNews) — Canon lawyers, theologians, and scholars will be meeting in Paris in two weeks to discuss a topic that has never been the focus of a Catholic conference before: How to depose a heretical pope.…Continue Reading

Planned Parenthood chief begs Ivanka to ‘stand up for’ abortion

NEW YORK, March 24, 2017 (LifeSiteNews) – Any woman who votes for the American Healthcare Act, which defunds Planned Parenthood, is “betraying every woman in America,” Planned Parenthood president Cecile Richards said during a somber interview this morning. Speaking to BuzzFeed,…Continue Reading

Chaput: Everyone who’s a legal citizen should come pray for immigrants

Philadelphia, Pa., Mar 18, 2017 / 05:32 am (CNA).- As fears of deportation threaten to keep many immigrants home from a prayer service on Sunday, Archbishop Charles Chaput of Philadelphia is calling on citizens and legal residents to attend the…Continue Reading

Rabbi says Pope’s homilies could threaten Catholic-Jewish relations

March 13, 2017 An Italian rabbi has raised a protest against the topic of a conference to be held by the Italian Bibilical Association: “Israel, people of a jealous God. Consistencies and ambiguities of an elitist religion.” Rabbi Giuseppe Laras…Continue Reading

This man drives for Uber to spread the pro-life message

TROY, Ohio, March 10, 2017 (LifeSiteNews) – As an abortion abolitionist, Bryan Kemper wears many different hats – including sharing the pro-life message while driving for Uber. “I am in an area where I drive a lot of college students…Continue Reading

The secret obsession that will destroy modern feminism

March 8, 2017 (LifeSiteNews) – What does it mean to be a woman? Planned Parenthood and the modern-day feminist movement are profoundly confused about this. Today is International Women’s Day. Planned Parenthood and its allies would have people believe that…Continue Reading

Planned Parenthood refuses Trump offer to give up abortions and keep funding

March 7, 2017 (LifeSiteNews) – Planned Parenthood has declined an offer from President Trump to keep – and possibly increase – its federal funding in exchange for ceasing to commit abortions. The proposal was an “impossibility” for Planned Parenthood officials,…Continue Reading

Pope’s Address to Roman Clergy (Part I)

The Holy Father’s Meditation The Progress of Faith in the Life of a Priest “Lord, increase our faith!” (Luke 17:5). This question arose spontaneously in the disciples when the Lord was speaking to them of mercy and said that we…Continue Reading

Southern MN Catholic diocese files bankruptcy over abuse claims

MINNEAPOLIS — The Catholic Diocese of New Ulm, Minnesota filed for bankruptcy protection on Friday, the 14th U.S.  Catholic diocese nationwide and third in Minnesota to do so in the face of mounting claims of sexual abuse by clergy. The…Continue Reading

Trump hit with ultimatum on global ‘atrocity’

An organization representing the sentiments of more than a quarter-million Americans is asking the nation’s new U.N. ambassador, Nikki Haley, to urge the global body to launch a campaign to protect Christians and other Read more at

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This Weeks Comments And Letters . . .

Culture Of Life 101 . . . “An Introduction To The Problem Of Euthanasia”

By BRIAN CLOWES Part 2 (Editor’s Note: Brian Clowes has been director of research and training at Human Life International since 1995. For an electronic copy of chapter 23 of The Facts of Life, a 150-page treatise on all of the aspects of euthanasia, e-mail him at + + + We have covered the definitions of the varieties of…Continue Reading

Today . . .

Could Dozens Of Shuttered Catholic Churches Become Immigrant Sanctuaries?

Roman Catholic activists are calling on the Archdiocese of New York to take a stronger stance against deportation. While dozens of churches, mosques and synagogues across the city are opening their doors to immigrants, providing everything from know-your-rights training to physical sanctuary from Immigration and Customs Enforcement, they say Cardinal Timothy Dolan isn’t doing his share. Some are calling on Dolan to explicitly denounce deportation, while others see an opportunity in the dozens of empty…Continue Reading

Will the Roberts Court Allow Catholic Hospitals to Keep Underfunding Pension Plans?

The U.S. Supreme Court on Monday heard arguments in a series of cases with the potential to allow businesses like Catholic hospitals to avoid complying with employee benefits law by exploiting a “church plan” exemption. If the Roberts Court sides with the businesses, that could mean

Canadian surgeons harvesting organs from euthanised patients

Taking advantage of the country’s new law, Canadian transplant surgeons have harvested organs from dozens of euthanasia patients. According to the National Post, 26 people in Ontario who died by lethal injection have donated tissue or organs. This involved mostly corneas, skin, heart valves, bones and tendons. The National Post’s report only covered Ontario. Bioethicists, Transplant Quebec and an ethics committee of the Quebec government in Quebec argued last year that euthanasia could be a good…Continue Reading

VIDEO: Card. Burke about the future of the Five Dubia about ‘Amoris laetitia’

At St. Raymond of Penafort Church in Virginia (which if I am not mistaken was built by my my friend Fr. James Gould), another Raymond, Card. Burke, answered a question about the Five Dubia submitted by the Four Cardinals about the infamous objectively murky bits of Amoris laetitia. The Dubia That Won’t Die. So far, Pope Francis has not given any clear answer to the Five Dubia, though surrogates (e.g., Card. Schoenborn, Card. Coccopalmerio, et al.) have

Analysis: Did Pope Francis just condemn Communion for the remarried?

The Pope’s statements have the internet abuzz – but their importance has been exaggerated For the last couple of days Catholic social media and the blogosphere have been preoccupied with some reported remarks by Pope Francis. The remarks carry weight because they come from an impeccable source – the president of the Chilean bishops’ conference, Bishop Santiago Silva, and its secretary Bishop Fernando Ramos – and because they relate to the great ecclesial controversy of the moment:…Continue Reading

Culture Of Life 101 . . . Eugenics: Prelude To World War

By BRIAN CLOWES (Editor’s Note: Brian Clowes has been director of research and training at Human Life International since 1995. For an electronic copy of more than a thousand pro-eugenics quotations, including those by Margaret Sanger, e-mail him at + + + “Everything must be examined from this [utilitarian] point of view and used…Continue Reading

Discriminating Tolerance

By JAMES K. FITZPATRICK It has become routine for commentators on the right to criticize the hypocrisy of campus leftists who shout down conservative speakers. The charge is that leftists were in favor of freedom of expression when they were a minority on campus, but now, after gaining control of the administrations and faculties at…Continue Reading

Russia Is The New West

By JUDE DOUGHERTY Iben Thranholm is little known in the United States. A media host and journalist in Denmark, she is also a theologian and a recognized authority on the work of Soren Kierkegaard. Alarmed by the demonization of Vladimir Putin and by the West’s increasingly belligerent attitude toward Russia, an attitude that contradicts everything…Continue Reading

A Nation Divided

By LAWRENCE P. GRAYSON “A house divided against itself cannot stand,” said Abraham Lincoln in June 1858, less than three years before the Civil War began. “It will become all one thing or all the other,” he continued. “Either the opponents of slavery will arrest the further spread of it…or its advocates will push it…Continue Reading

Finally Fitting In

By DONALD DeMARCO MWhen he was lecturing at the University of Chicago, Mortimer Adler identified himself as a Jew teaching Catholic philosophy at a Protestant school to a class of atheists. The image of not quite fitting in was characteristic of Adler’s life, though he was never one to complain about it. The absence of…Continue Reading


Our Catholic Faith (Section B of print edition)

Pope Francis’ Message For World Youth Day… “The Mighty One Has Done Great Things For Me”

(Editor’s Note: Below is the Vatican-provided text [slightly abridged] of the Holy Father’s message for this year’s World Youth Day, which will be held on Palm Sunday, April 9, 2017, at the diocesan level on the theme: “The Mighty One has done great things for me” [Luke 1:49]. ZENIT made the text available. The original was issued in English on…Continue Reading

A Leaven In The World… Good News Vs. Fake News

By FR. KEVIN M. CUSICK I’ve been fascinated by news, primarily as it is peddled by means of the daily “broadsheet,” since grade school when I single-handedly founded a newspaper for ensuring all eight grades of my parochial school would be well informed on the matters of the day. I remember well the saintly woman, Mrs. Dumais, a busy mother…Continue Reading

What Is Faith?… A Different Kind Of Objection To Original Sin

By RAYMOND DE SOUZA, KM Part 30 In this article we will consider a different kind of objection: those directed against God’s justice. Fifth objection: “The punishment which God inflicted for eating a bit of fruit was excessive.” Reply: In the first place, this objection depends upon a literal interpretation, and we have already dealt with this in previous articles.…Continue Reading

The Eucharist: Sacramental Sacrifice

By DON FIER Part 4 As we continued our consideration of the Holy Eucharist as a sacramental sacrifice last week, we saw that this most august “Sacrament of sacraments” is not only a sacrificial memorial (making present) of Christ’s sacrifice on the Cross on Calvary, but “is also the sacrifice of the Church” (Catechism of the Catholic Church [CCC], n.…Continue Reading

Catholic Replies

Q. In a recent reply, you essentially condemn suicide bombers to Hell. However, if a person really believes in the righteousness of something strong enough to die for it, even if it is objectively evil, is he not acting in good conscience? The Church has never declared that a particular person is in Hell, not even Judas. — T.F.B., California.…Continue Reading

Catholic Heroes… Blessed Lodovico Pavoni

By CAROLE BRESLIN Brescia is an Italian city in the foothills of the Alps. It has stunning vistas, ancient ruins, historic forts, castles, and modern buildings standing beside ones that are many centuries old, as well as foundations that date back to 1,200 BC. Brescia was once a Roman province. In the early Middle Ages, it was captured by the…Continue Reading

Catholic Heroes… St. Toribio Alfonso De Mogrovejo

By CAROLE BRESLIN Those who wish to attack the Catholic Church usually bring up two “weapons”: the Crusades and the Inquisition, which started in the Middle Ages. The Spanish Inquisition had the most just procedures and did not exile the Jewish people the way England (in 1290) and France (in 1306) did. In the late 16th century, King Philip II…Continue Reading